In this edition of the LKSOC…Notre Dame can’t stop anybody, the Segway guy meets his end on a Segway and the new Terry Dean:
◊ The generosity of the Irish
Notre Dame has played three teams this season that are currently ranked (Michigan, Michigan State and Stanford). In those contests, the Irish rolled up an extremely robust 1,347 combined yards of total offense (449 ypg). What do they have to show for that fine body of offensive work? An 0-3 record in those games.
That’s because Notre Dame hasn’t come close to stopping any of the aforementioned teams. Total yards per game allowed against that trio? 471. Total yards per play given up to those same teams? A brutal 6.0 per snap.
It’s the same old same old in regard to Brian Kelly-coached teams playing ranked opposition. Last season, his Cincinnati Bearcats averaged 447.5 ypg of total offense against three ranked opponents but also yielded 472.7 ypg in those same games. To take the next step, Kelly’s got to figure out how to slow down good teams.
◊ Who NOT to hug after a big win
Word of advice to Auburn quarterback Cameron Newton…after winning a big game, try to refrain from hugging the referee like you did as the clock ran down to 0:00 in your team’s 35-27 victory over South Carolina. It just looks, well, sort of odd:
◊ I know why the caged Stephen Garcia sings
When does one generation end and the next one begin? I ask this because we’re not that far removed from Steve Spurrier tossing Terry Dean aside in favor of Danny Wuerrfel. So is it too soon to call Stephen Garcia this generation’s Terry Dean? Or should I just call him Terry Dean Part 2?
This past Saturday, Garcia looked pretty damn masterful in leading South Carolina to a 20-7 lead over Auburn. But after he caught a case of the fumbles that Auburn took advantage of, Spurrier yanked him in favor of true freshman Connor Shaw. Of course Shaw proceeded to throw two interceptions, because that’s what a wet behind the ears kid does when he’s thrown into the fire that way.
The funny thing is, the move was such a head scratcher that a friend of mine who was surfing multiple games texted me to ask how Garcia got hurt. You know, because that’s the only logical reason why a true freshman would have replaced him at that point in the game. My reply? “Hurt? No, Garcia just got Terry Deaned.”
Jesus, OBC, I know you were pissed at Garcia, but in lieu of taking it out on him the way you did, why not wait until the next practice to scream at him in front of the team? Instead, you chose to take away your team’s best chance to win a meaningful SEC road game.
I know people want to knock the production of Spurrier’s quarterbacks at South Carolina and imply that means that the studs he had at Florida were infinitely better. While that’s true to a point, I also think defenses back in the 1990’s were slightly less evolved than they are now. Back then, a Spurrier quarterback could just throw the skinny post at will. Today, they just can’t, and the last person who seems to understand that is Steve Spurrier.
In regard to Dean, here’s a fascinating quote from Spurrier from 1994:
“I’ve done a lousy job coaching Terry Dean, and I felt like at this time Danny deserved a chance to be our player based on performance,” coach Steve Spurrier said Tuesday. “I just haven’t been able to get Terry to play the way I’d like him to. I just haven’t done a very good job preparing him.” (Orlando Sentinel)
If Shaw assumes the starting quarterback job on a full-time basis, expect a very similar quote from the OBC in about a month regarding Garcia.
◊ Would this be like Burger King’s CEO choking to death on a Whopper?
Talk about a screwed up way to meet your end: Jimi Heselden, the owner of the company that manufactures Segways, died after driving his own personal Segway over a cliff. This picture from the Daily Mail provides all the details you need to know:
◊ A big road test = a first for an awful lot of Volunteer players
As if you need any more proof that Tennessee’s football program is essentially starting over from scratch, Volunteer coach Derek Dooley dropped the following nugget concerning his team’s trip to LSU this coming Saturday:
“The bigger challenge besides that is it’s going to be the first road game for almost half of our travel squad. I think I counted about 30 guys out of the – we’ll probably travel 66 to 68 guys — 30 of them have never even been on a road trip at Tennessee. So we’ll have to talk a lot about that and how we handle it professionally and how we handle the crowd, and a hostile environment. So a lot of challenges this week.” (Chattanoogan.com)
◊ The Big 12 race is interesting again…maybe
This Thursday night’s contest between Texas A&M and Oklahoma State is mighty intriguing on a couple of levels. First off, if you like points, this one should have plenty of them: OSU is currently first nationally in total offense (596 ypg) while Texas A&M checks in at #10 (501.3 ypg).
The second is that the Big 12 is suddenly a helluva lot more wide open than it initially appeared to be. With Texas getting kicked in the teeth by UCLA, Oklahoma not exactly looking invincible and Nebraska looking to be very good but not quite great, who’s to say an A&M or OSU couldn’t make this thing very interesting by season’s end? Hell, even K-State is 4-0 right now.
A road win over OSU might give Mike Sherman the in with Aggie fans that he’s so desperately wanted. Is it just me, or have they wanted him fired since BEFORE he was actually hired? It’s hard to tell who Aggie fans dislike more, Sherman or Mack Brown.
As for Oklahoma State, how about the season Brandon Weedon’s been having at quarterback? I know, I know, there are 6-A schools in Texas high school football that have played a tougher schedule to this point, but try to turn your nose down for just a second and give the kid a break. He’s averaging 325 ypg passing on 9.7 yards an attempt, and unlike Houston’s Case Keenum, Weedon doesn’t keep throwing it to the other team.
◊ Calipari’s silly excuses
Here is an excerpt of John Calipari’s interview with Jon Soloman of the Birmingham News this week:
Calipari suggested Kentucky lost to West Virginia in the Elite Eight last season in part because the Wildcats were looking ahead to Duke in the Final Four.
“Do you know how badly we wanted to play Duke?” Calipari said. “I think that’s why we played so badly against West Virginia. We wanted Duke so badly we couldn’t see straight.”
Kentucky shot 4 of 32 on 3-pointers in the loss to West Virginia. (Birmingham News)
That’s a pretty good excuse…except for the fact that at the time of his own team’s loss, Duke hadn’t played Baylor yet in its own regional final. Kind of hard to look ahead to playing a team that hasn’t yet advanced.
◊ This and that
LSU is apparently staying with Jordan Jefferson at quarterback. Yeah, as if there’s a more attractive option on the depth chart…Talk about a couple of teams that dodged bullets this past Saturday: UCF had Kansas State dead to rights before losing, and UAB was shoveling dirt on Tennessee’s coffin before letting that one slip away…Speaking of ones that got away, what a couple of batshit stupid 4th quarter throws by Arkansas quarterback Ryan Mallett in his team’s narrow loss to top ranked Alabama. Heisman my ass…Because no intraconference play has yet to begin in the Big East, the overall records of its teams are used to sort them out in the standings. So as of right now, Syracuse sits atop the league at 3-1 while Cincinnati is 1-3 and in last place. It’s still VERY early, but what a difference a season makes.
When Bryce Brown was the #1 recruit in the nation coming out of Wichita in 2009, you just knew his college ride wouldn’t be a smooth one. Back then, his street agent Brian Butler actually implied he might advise Brown to skip college altogether and play in the Canadian Football League. Nah, that shouldn’t have sent up red flags to anyone.
Butler’s basically a college football version of Sonny Vaccaro, meaning that he’s a slimeball of the highest order. The guy actually sold updates of Brown’s recruitment for $59 a year. And I’m sure he cashed in many other ways as well when he was shopping his prized blue chipper around to colleges.
Brown settled on Tennessee as his college choice, and if you pay any attention at all to college football, it’s been a pretty tumultuous year for that program. Between the player arrests and the sudden defection of Lane Kiffin, there’s been more heartache than glee lately in Volunteer Nation.
So with the hiring of Derek Dooley as the new coach, everyone is hoping for a fresh start. That includes Bryce Brown, but the fresh start he’s looking for is back at Kansas State. Brown let Dooley know about his decision to transfer to Manhattan, but he did it via text message this past Tuesday night before heading back to Wichita. Way to man up, Bryce.
Dooley has now confirmed that he hasn’t granted Brown a release and apparently doesn’t intend to do so. Here’s the rationale he provided to Austin Ward of the Knoxville News Sentinel:
Citing three main areas of evaluation, Vols coach Derek Dooley confirmed late Friday night that Brown will not be released from his scholarship - and the fact his request was made in a text message appears to have little to do with the ultimate decision.
“As with the other players who have asked for a release, I went through the same process with the same criteria with Bryce,” Dooley said. “These are the three key factors - what their personal investment into the program was, did they have their heart into it and did they give it a good, fair shot. No. 2, the harm that their departure creates for the organization. No. 3, how they handle it as a professional.
“I’ve done that with every one of these guys — with Aaron (Douglas), with Todd Campbell, with Nick Stephens, Nick Lamaison and now Bryce. So now my decision based on those three factors with Bryce is not to release him.” (Knoxville News Sentinel)
In a meeting with Dooley a few days before sending his now infamous text message, Brown apparently didn’t hint at wanting his release. All parties involved (including Brown’s father Arthur) agree on that:
“Bryce met with Coach Dooley on Saturday for about 30 minutes and Dooley asked him not to tell anyone they talked,” Arthur Brown said. “I’m really not sure why.”
Dooley acknowleged he met with Brown on Saturday but said he was not asked for a release.
Arthur Brown also said his son, one of the nation’s top recruits entering last season, did not ask Dooley for a release at that meeting. This week Dooley said that the reason Bryce has not been released is because he “has not come to me, looked me in the eye and said, ‘I want a release.’” (ESPN.com)
I’m absolutely positive that the moves Bryce Brown has made this past week were in large part influenced by Brian Butler. And the train wreck that has ensued says all you need to know about Butler’s ability as an adviser as well as the Brown family’s collective judgment in steering Bryce in the right direction.
Brown should have stepped up, met with his coach and politely asked for his release. But after years of being a coddled blue chipper whose strings are being pulled by a two bit con man, I wonder if he even has the capability to do something that classy. That might be asking too much of the kid.
On the flip side, I think Dooley’s playing a dangerous game. Let’s not be naive, Butler was selling Brown’s services in 2009. So when Brown ended up at Tennessee, well, I’ll let you fill in the rest.
If Kiffin and Company found out a way to make it worth Butler’s while to get Brown to become a Vol, then Dooley really should sever ties as quickly as possible. If this drags out and Brown gets frustrated, who knows what sort of information regarding his recruitment might come to light.
If something were to surface, the NCAA won’t nail Kiffin because he’s already long gone. And Brown? He’ll just go about his business at K-State. No, it’ll be Dooley who has to deal with the wreckage in Knoxville. Smarten up, coach.
In the notebook today we have a new spin on stadium use, the NCAA’s agent dragnet continues, Georgia recruits acting a fool once they leave the Peach State and K-State doing something I didn’t think I’d ever see…
Florida Atlantic’s radically student friendly stadium
Ted Hutton of the South Florida Sun Sentinel shared some pics of Florida Atlantic’s new football stadium, as well as the following tidbits:
There was a lot of talk about keeping the stadium open during the week. This area could become a student lounge, with internet access and indoor and outdoor seating.
The idea is that students who live in the dorms can wander over and use the facility as a study or social area, so the stadium becomes more than just a place to gather five or six times in the fall.
It could also be the site of watch parties for away games. All that sounds good to me.
The more use the stadium gets between games, the better, especially with it located right next to the dorms and in close proximity to everything else on campus.
Be a shame to have it locked up 360 days of the year. (South Florida Sun-Sentinel)
You wanna know what would happen to students trying to get into places like Jordan-Hare Stadium in Auburn or Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor on a non-game day? It would be like a lot like this, only more violent:
The NCAA’s anti-agent rampage continues
With the NCAA already sorting out who has and who hasn’t been partying with agents in South Beach (those investigations have already touched Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina) and whether or not Maurkice Pouncey took $100,000 from an agent while still at Florida, college football’s reigning Heisman Trophy is also being scrutinized.
Alabama’s Mark Ingram apparently attended a party on May 12th in Washington D.C. at the District nightclub. The party was a celebration for players who’d just been drafted, and the guest list included Florida’s Joe Haden. TMZ provides some more details:
The University of Alabama says Ingram is on the up and up. The Compliance Department tells us, “Mark asked if he could visit Joe Haden at his home in Baltimore. We checked with the NCAA and they approved this trip as long as Mark provided receipts for his expenses.” (TMZ.com)
As with the Marvin Austin investigation at North Carolina, the NCAA probably needs more details on how travel was paid for and who picked up the tab once Ingram was in D.C. I hope for the sake of Alabama fans that Ingram hasn’t followed Austin’s lead and uploaded a ton of pics to Twitter that would cause even more head scratching among NCAA investigators.
Why do recruits lose their heads once they leave the Peach State?
It’s been a bad summer for highly recruited wide receivers from the Class of 2010 who left the state of Georgia to play elsewhere. First, Tennessee’s Da’Rick Rogers got into that bar fight in Knoxville and his status with the team is still uncertain.
Then word came last week that Notre Dame’s Tai-ler Jones was nabbed at a party in South Bend and charged with underage drinking.
The other highly prized Georgia wide receiver from the Class of 2010 who left the state was Markeith Ambles of McDonough, who followed Lane Kiffin to USC after being considered a Tennessee lock. Ambles was ranked by Rivals as the state’s second best recruit behind Rogers (Jones was tabbed as the state’s 9th best prospect).
As of this writing, there is no word on Ambles having gotten in a brawl at a club or getting nabbed with a brew in his hand. But there’s still some summer to go…
2010’s biggest scheduling surprise
Remember Bill Snyder’s first run as Kansas State coach? Back then, you had a better chance of being abducted by a Sasquatch family than seeing Snyder’s Wildcats schedule a decent out of conference opponent.
Take the 1998 team that won the Big 12 North for example, they played the following OOC murderer’s row: Indiana State, Northern Illinois and ULM. Those teams ended up with a combined 12-21 record and K-State beat the three of them by a combined score of 201-14.
Fast forward to the present day and K-State is trying to get back up that mountain following a 6-6 season. But in very un-Snyder-like fashion, the Wildcats will attempt to do so while not feeding exclusively on cupcakes. Oh, the Missouri State and North Texas games should be W’s, but the other two non-Big 12 opponents are UCLA and UCF.
I know, it’s not like Snyder will be leading his team onto the field against Alabama and Penn State. But two OOC bowl teams visiting Manhattan in the same season? That’s strange for me to see on paper.