Posted on: September 3, 2010 6:38 pm
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Want to see celebrities' sons play HS football?

Posted by Adam Jacobi

It's Friday night, and what better way to spend the evening in preparation for the first football Saturday than catching some high school football? "Sure," you may respond, "but the significant other can't be persuaded to join me, as she's no fan of athletics!" And that's a common (if not universal) complaint.

Fortunately, those with no interest in sport often have interest in famous people, and what better way to bring these two great tastes together than with MaxPreps.com's list of the top 10 celebrity's sons in high school football?

The list includes some of the top preps in the nation, including Deion Sanders Jr., Ray Lewis III, and Barry Sanders. You can guess who these guys' dads are. Also, Fred Taylor's son Kelvin--the star of some ridiculous (if slightly contact-averse, but we're picking nits here) highlights--is on the list.

But again, to people whose interests don't directly involve the NFL, the term "celebrity" might not apply. For these people, you'll probably have to pony up the money for a trip to Westlake Village, outside of Los Angeles. That's the alma mater of Nick Montana, son of Joe Montana, and the current home to both Trevor Gretzky (yep) and Trey Smith... that'd be the son of Will Smith. Oh, sure, you can also see one of Will's kids doing sports by just watching The Karate Kid in the theaters, but c'mon, that's not football. Besides, movies are all CGI these days. Gotta see the real thing.

Posted on: September 3, 2010 3:58 pm
 

NCAA: Jeremiah Masoli can play immediately

Posted by Adam Jacobi

Reversing a decision made just two days ago, the NCAA just announced this afternoon that Jeremiah Masoli may, in fact, play for the Ole Miss Rebels, starting tomorrow. Here's the text of the NCAA's decision:

University of Mississippi football student-athlete Jeremiah Masoli may compete immediately, according to a decision today by the NCAA Division I Subcommittee for Legislative Relief. The subcommittee’s decision overturns the staff decision to grant the graduate student transfer waiver with the condition that Masoli could not compete until the 2011-12 academic year.

According to NCAA rules, created by member schools, football graduate student-athletes must receive a waiver in order to compete if they enroll at a university other than where they received their undergraduate degree.

Every NCAA waiver process includes a staff decision first and an opportunity for the school to appeal that decision to an independent committee. This group is comprised of representatives of NCAA member schools and conferences. Throughout both stages of the waiver process, the case is reviewed and evaluated based on the specific facts of that particular case, as disclosed during the review process. In this case, the staff, subcommittee and school all acknowledged the complexity of the waiver request.

The NCAA staff received the waiver request from Ole Miss on Aug. 13 and received the final piece of information from the school on the evening of Aug. 30. After considering that final piece of information, the NCAA staff issued its decision the morning of Aug. 31. The appeal decision was given three days later.

This largely procedural explanation is in relative contrast to the denial from earlier this week, which stated that the intent of the waiver was not to allow an opportunity for athletes to avoid disciplinary action at their initial school.

While that argument isn't inherently incorrect, it's a non sequitur, one that should have prompted an easy response from Ole Miss' lawyers, something like "Would you mind showing me where, in the waiver's guidelines, we might find that 'intent' or 'spirit'?" Clearly, it's not there, because Masoli's going to be playing tomorrow.

Posted on: September 3, 2010 3:28 pm
 

Butch Davis could have gone to LSU... twice

Posted by Adam Jacobi

LSU fans who spend the week chuckling at the misfortune of Butch Davis and the Tar Heels, who are missing somewhere between 12-15 players for tomorrow's game in Baton Rouge, should heed a little caution and consider a sobering fact: Butch Davis has, on multiple occasions, come very close to being the head coach at LSU.

The Shreveport Times detailed the Tigers' extended courtship with Davis, noting that before hiring Nick Saban in 1999 and then Les Miles in 2005, LSU came very close to taking Davis instead; in '99, Davis had been too open about his interest to eventually coach in the NFL, and then health problems derailed what would have been a sure hire by the school in '05.

This is not to insinuate that LSU is a crooked school or that they would have intentionally courted the type of academic malfeasance that has been alleged with the Tar Heels today, of course. It's not like Butch Davis interviewed with North Carolina and told them "I'm planning on farming out my players' classwork to my kids' tutor." 

And seriously, LSU fans; do not mock Butch Davis this weekend or thereafter, because you are tempting the mischievously cruel football gods if you do. After all, Les Miles' job isn't completely safe, and do these sound like the words of people who are trying to put any distance between their former school and Davis?

In reference to the '99 opening:

"We interviewed Butch before we talked to Nick [Saban]," former LSU Board of Supervisors member Charles Weems of Alexandria said this week. "We really thought he was great."

Weems along with LSU chancellor Mark Emmert and Board of Supervisors member Stanley Jacobs of New Orleans were in Miami to talk to Davis.

"We were very interested in Butch," Weems said. "He was really impressive, but the situation was that Butch knew he was going to be going to the pros sooner or later.

And from the '05 opening:

"It was too bad," [former LSU AD Skip] Bertman said. "I would've taken Butch in a heartbeat."

"It's sad because he really cleaned up the Miami program," Bertman said. "Butch is a super straight shooter. He was the new sheriff in Miami. He's a clean guy. I hope they get this worked out at North Carolina. Butch is a great coach."

Posted on: September 3, 2010 1:54 pm
Edited on: September 3, 2010 2:00 pm
 

Does Terrelle Pryor have inside track on Heisman?

Posted by Adam Jacobi

If a selection of voters is any indication, Terrelle Pryor is likely your (insanely) early leader for Heisman consideration. StiffArmTrophy.com announced the first voter survey of the season, and while Pryor isn't atop the list, he will be very soon:

rank player weighted% votes
1 Alabama RB Mark Ingram 100% 88
2 Ohio St QB Terrelle Pryor 99% 87
3 Washington QB Jake Locker 84% 74
4 Boise St QB Kellen Moore 81% 72
5 Houston QB Case Keenum 79% 70
6 Pitt RB Dion Lewis 77% 64
7 Arkansas QB Ryan Mallett 77% 69
8 Oregon St RB Jacquizz Rodgers 70% 59
9 Wisconsin RB John Clay 56% 47
10 Stanford QB Andrew Luck 53% 47

Yeah, Mark Ingram's not staying on top--especially the longer his knee forces him to sit on the sidelines.

It's important to note, though, that these types of lists don't behave in the same way a team poll would. For teams, it's pretty much a win-go-up, lose-go-down ordeal, and tracking stats is a much more nuanced process than that. Further, these are all purely projections for 2010; Terrelle Pryor wasn't even a Heisman finalist last year, so it's not as if he's being rewarded for past performance or anything. Thus, if he doesn't meet those expectations, he'll tumble down the list--there are way too many quarterbacks west of the Mississippi who'll be putting up absurd stats this year.

Aside from the top 10 listed above, the only non-QB, non-RB candidates in the top 25 are Georgia WR A.J. Green at no. 16, Iowa DE Adrian Clayborn at no. 23, and Alabama WR Julio Jones at no. 25. Jones seems comically underrated, but as mentioned earlier, this is early. If he puts up numbers, he'll rise up this list, and if he doesn't, they'll find someone else. 

Posted on: September 3, 2010 10:02 am
 

12-15 Tar Heels will not play against LSU

Posted by Chip Patterson

When North Carolina departed for Atlanta on Friday morning, there a few faces missing from the group.  

Head Coach Butch Davis had already announced that Marvin Austin was suspended indefinitely and sources revealed late Thursday that Greg Little also would not make the trip.  Austin and Little were both central figures in the NCAA's initial agent-related investigation earlier this summer.

But the worst-case scenario for North Carolina came true on Friday morning, with the official announcement from the university that a minimum of 12 and potentially 15 players would not be playing against LSU.

The University of North Carolina has declared six student-athletes on the football team ineligible for Saturday's season-opening game for violating school and/or NCAA rules. The University is also withholding at least six other student-athletes from Saturday's game while the investigation continues.

The six ineligible student-athletes include: defensive tackle Marvin Austin, cornerback Charles Brown, cornerback Kendric Burney, wide receiver Greg Little, defensive end Michael McAdoo and defensive end Robert Quinn.

Six other student-athletes who will be withheld from Saturday's game include: tailback Shaun Draughn, defensive end Linwan Euwell, safety Brian Gupton, tailback Ryan Houston, safety Da'Norris Searcy and safety Jonathan Smith.

The number of games that those 12 student-athletes may miss has not been determined at this time. The investigation continues to include both agent-related and academic issues.

The University also continues to work today with the NCAA to determine the eligibility status of three other student-athletes. Those three will not accompany the team to Atlanta on Friday morning. Further information will be announced when a decision on their status for the game is reached. 



   
Posted on: September 3, 2010 12:10 am
Edited on: September 3, 2010 12:11 am
 

Utah needlessly ices and re-ices Pitt kicker

Posted by Adam Jacobi

With Utah holding a 3-point lead, Pittsburgh lined up for a game-tying field goal with three seconds left. Pittsburgh's money kicker, Dan Hutchins, sent the 30-yard kick through the uprights, and the game was tied.

Except it wasn't, because unbeknownst to every single player on the field, Utah coach Kyle Whittingham had called a timeout the instant before the snap, disallowing the field goal. So the teams lined up again, and Dan Hutchins kicked again. Except this time, Hutchins biffed the chip shot, hooking it left.

But that field goal didn't count either, because once again, Whittingham had iced Hutchins with a last-moment timeout. Utah's players and fans, nearly none of whom were aware that the timeout was called, celebrated until the officials restored order. At that point, Hutchins lined up for a third time, hit the field goal, and sent the game into overtime.

Three attempts at a field goal in a game situation, and only the last one counted. That's ridiculous.

The NCAA needs to stop allowing these types of situations to happen; frankly, they're wastes of everybody's time, and as evidenced by Whittingham's follies tonight, they rarely serve any demonstrable purpose. If a timeout's going to be called and enforced, players on the field need to be aware of it as it happens. The best way to accomplish this without making the rules even more needlessly complicated is to disallow timeouts from the sideline once the line is set on offense. 

Posted on: September 2, 2010 9:00 pm
 

Miami pounding Florida A&M

Posted by Adam Jacobi

There are a few competitive games being played today. FAMU-Miami is not one of them. The Hurricanes are drilling the Rattlers at the half, 35-0.

Jacory Harris is leading the charge, completing 12-15 passes for 210 and 3 TDs, and he's made it look as easy as you'd hope from someone playing Florida A&M.

Fans who continue to watch this game in the second half may reliably considered sadists.

Category: NCAAF
Posted on: September 2, 2010 8:16 pm
Edited on: September 2, 2010 11:30 pm
 

Kirk Ferentz's contract extension through 2020

Posted by Adam Jacobi

The Iowa Hawkeyes have just announced that Kirk Ferentz will be receiving a mammoth contract extension. The deal will push Ferentz's salary to over $4 million a year after incentives, which would make him the highest-paid coach in the Big Ten (at least, until Jim Tressel gets an extension).

The deal is good through 2020, which is not only a nice vote of confidence in Ferentz, but in effect a lifetime deal. Ferentz will turn 65 before the 2020 season, and it would be his 21st season at the helm of the Hawkeyes. If Ferentz stays that long, not only would he be the closest thing to a "lifer" in the Big Ten since Joe Paterno, but he'd also likely be extended through his 70th birthday for recruiting's sake. Big "if," of course, but Iowa's administration is making that invitation public now.

Now, some might look at the deal and wonder why Iowa's rewarding a coach whose seat was starting to get warm just three years ago and who's never made it to a Rose Bowl. But the reality of the situation is that Iowa's not an Ohio State or Michigan, and they don't have the institutional and traditional advantages a powerhouse would have. They're closing that gap year by year, mind you, but nobody would argue that Iowa's program is at the highest level yet. They've never played for a national championship, and they're usually not national championship contenders.

But what they can do is invest in a coach like a championship contender, and it's worked for the Iowa program so far. At the first sign of Ferentz's success in 2002, it was generally assumed that he would bolt either to an elite college program or the NFL, because Iowa wasn't considered a "destination school." Now, today, it certainly appears that Iowa is among those destination schools.

 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com