Posted on: January 19, 2011 5:54 pm
Posted by Tom Fornelli
While the Randy Edsall Award* of 2010 hasn't been handed out yet, there isn't much question that Wisconsin offensive coordinator Paul Chryst is the runaway favorite to win it this season. Chryst's name has popped up for job openings with Minnesota, Texas, Vanderbilt, Pitt and even the Dallas Cowboys. Of course, none of those jobs actually panned out, but it seems there's another NFL team now interested in Chryst.
The Wisconsin State Journal is reporting that Wisconsin AD Barry Alvarez has told the paper that the San Francisco 49ers have sought permission to talk to Chryst. The 49ers recently hired Jim Harbaugh -- maybe you heard -- as their new head coach, and Harbaugh just hired Geep Chryst to coach tight ends and quarterbacks in San Francisco. Geep is Paul Chryst's brother, and it's also a name I'm not sure how to pronounce.
Anyway, what San Francisco wants from Chryst, I don't know. Greg Roman has already been hired as offensive coordinator, so if Chryst is to be offered a job, it'd likely be as a position coach. There's also talk that a raise is in the works for Chryst at Wisconsin, and that it's just awaiting approval by the school's Board of Regents in February. So whether Chryst has any interest in leaving Madison or not, the fact that others are interested in him has earned him a raise at the very least.
*The Randy Edsall Award is an award I just made up. It goes to the college football coach who's name pops up in the most coaching rumors during an offseason. For the past few years Edsall's name came up in seemingly every opening, but he never left UConn until this season when he took a job at Maryland after his name was never even mentioned as a candidate.
Posted on: January 17, 2011 1:31 pm
Posted by Jerry Hinnen
If the nationwide trend this offseason has been for premium-grade junior talent to surprisingly come back to school -- see Andrew Luck, Justin Blackmon, Michael Floyd, etc. -- no one told the SEC.
Just ask Georgia, who over the weekend lost outside linebacker-slash-pass rush specialist Justin Houston to the draft just ahead of the deadline . Houston joins the Bulldogs' A.J. Green in forgoing his senior season in Athens and is projected as a late first-round pick in the latest CBSSports.com mock draft .
For a player custom-made for the NFL's predominant 3-4 defense -- just ask NFL-trained Georgia defensive coordinator Todd Grantham, whose 3-4 schemes made Houston a 10-sack terror off the edge, not to mention a Nagurski Trophy finalist -- the decision to come out couldn't have been too difficult. (We won't be surprised if Houston winds up looking like a steal if he does go as late as currently projected.) But it won't make it any easier for Mark Richt or Bulldog fans to stomach; between Houston's departure and the graduation of seniors Akeem Dent and Darryl Gamble, Grantham's linebacking unit will have to be almost entirely rebuilt.
Unfortunately for Richt, after the 6-7 disaster of 2010, he may not be able to afford to wait for that rebuilding job to pay dividends. He paid Grantham good money to come to Athens from the Dallas Cowboys, and now Grantham will have to earn it. With major improvement required to keep Richt employed and now neither of the Bulldogs' best players from 2010 available in 2011, there won't be any time to waste.
Posted on: January 13, 2011 6:33 pm
Edited on: January 13, 2011 10:51 pm
Posted by Adam Jacobi
Earlier, we reported that there were strong indications that Connecticut was looking to hire ex-Miami offensive coordinator Mark Whipple as its new head coach. And while Whipple did end up being one of the finalists for the job vacated by Randy Edsall two weeks ago, the Boston Globe reported today that UConn has hired former Syracuse head coach Paul Pasqualoni instead.
Pasqualoni, 61, compiled a 107-59-1 record at Syracuse from 1991 to his firing in 2004, and while those numbers are fine -- winning 100 games at the I-A level is no trivial feat -- TNIAAM rightly notes that the program diminished in quality under him; two of Pasqualoni's 10-win seasons came in his first two seasons with the team, and his only three non-winning seasons were his last three. Since his firing, Pasqualoni has been an assistant in the NFL with the Dallas Cowboys , then the Miami Dolphins , then the Cowboys again (briefly) this season.
What this means for Whipple is unclear, other than that he won't be on the sidelines at Connecticut this season; he was not retained by new Miami coach Al Golden after Randy Shannon was fired, so it's not as if Whipple's still got a job to come home to. Whipple was a successful head coach at Massachusetts and other smaller programs, and he has assistant experience both at Miami and in the NFL. His skill set is still impressive, and at 53, he's got plenty of miles left on him. It's just up to him to convince a new team that his Hurricanes' offensive struggles were aberrations and not indications of larger strategic shortcomings in Whipple's game-planning.
Posted on: October 28, 2010 12:04 pm
Posted by Tom Fornelli
While Oklahoma State has already announced that wide receiver Justin Blackmon will be suspended for this week's game against Kansas State following his DUI arrest on Monday , and Blackmon has issued an apology, there still is the question of how Blackmon came across the tickets to Monday night's Dallas Cowboys game at JerryWorld.
JerryWorld is an expensive place to see a football game, one of the most expensive in the NFL, and given all the troubles going on throughout college football about contact between players and agents, it's a natural question to ask. How did Blackmon get those tickets, and will it result in any kind of NCAA violation for the school?
Well, at the moment, the school is pretty confident that Blackmon did nothing wrong to acquire the seats.
Dallas Cowboy tickets are believed to have been provided to Blackmon and his friends by the father of a former OSU player. Cowboy athletic director Mike Holder would not comment on the Blackmon situation, but OSU sources indicate that athletic department officials are confident that no extra-benefit NCAA violation has occurred.
Which may be true, but considering everything Oklahoma State went through with Dez Bryant last season -- who happens to be a former OSU player that plays for the Cowboys, but this is just my brain connecting dots -- the last thing they want is the NCAA sniffing around campus right now.