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Tag:Florida
Posted on: February 14, 2011 3:31 pm
Edited on: February 14, 2011 5:53 pm
 

Urban Meyer becoming CFB watchdog

Wow, Urban Meyer sure did pop off didn't he? 
In a widely distributed (on Twitter) radio interview , Florida's former on-again, off-again coach made some pretty damning statements. Well, damning considering they came from him. 

Meyer: “What I’ve seen the last five years is a complete turn in the integrity of the college coaching profession. It’s completely turned the other way. Maybe I wasn't exposed to it because I was in the profession. Right now, it’s not good because the risk-reward is 'Have at it, do what you’ve got to do to get the great player, go win games and at the end of the day we’ll find out what happens down the road …'"

The news here is not that Urban Meyer sees a radical change in the coaching profession. The reaction should be: duh. The "last five years"? That does coincide with the SEC's current championship run, but the coaching profession was fairly sketchy before 2006. I seem to remember Alabama being on probation a couple of times before that. 2006 was after Reggie Bush had left USC but before he would burn the program to the ground. And there were those approximately 30 players arrested at Florida while Meyer was there. 

Of course, coaches weren't directly involved with those cases. But it remains hypocritical for coaches to take credit for Johnny's 3.5 GPA then claim ignorance when the spit hits the fan. If Meyer was a part of that system, then he is turning into the Carrie Nation of college football.

And let's not forget he profited greatly -- and continues to profit -- off a system he calls corrupt. Meyer is ESPN's latest in-between-jobs coaching analyst superstar.

While he was on his stump, Meyer also seemingly took a run at Tennessee basketball coach Bruce Pearl. 

Meyer:  “You tell me how a young man who is a wide receiver (Dez Bryant of Oklahoma State) and he lied to the NCAA and they took away his eligibility and he was never allowed to play again. And then there are violations in other areas of the country and that doesn’t happen.”

Radio host: “Coach of Tennessee basketball (Bruce Pearl) did the same thing (lied to the NCAA). Sat out eight games lost a little money and he’s back coaching right now.”

Meyer:And Dez Bryant is out of the profession."

Meyer agreed with host, former coach Dan Dakich, that coaches should be fired if they are found guilty of major violations.

Meyer: "That's the only answer. There's a reason why people don't rob banks. The risk-reward is you're going to jail. Right now, if you commit -- they call them secondary violations, which is comical; they're not secondary -- if you commit a secondary violation, it's a slap on the hand." 


Meyer also said he developed "a recommendation" that he sent to "a good chunk of athletic directors and presidents and commissioners." It would have been nice to get some specifics -- you know, names of coaches, specific recommendations -- out of Meyer. For now, the news is that he said these things, not necessarily that these things are going on.

Meyer: "I've had a couple of meetings already. It's a question of how much do they want help? I think there were 28-something players suspended last year. If that's not a red flag ... We don't want this to turn into minor leagues for the NFL, or maybe we do..." 

"I'm no longer a football coach and that's had a part with why I stepped away."

Once again, it would be nice if the coach named names and provided us with the list of recommendations. We can only hope they're coming. Soon.



Category: NCAAF
Posted on: February 10, 2011 2:28 pm
Edited on: February 10, 2011 2:33 pm
 

National notes leading w/ TCU-Wisconsin

Let's straighten out this TCU-Wisconsin mini-controversy. There's a huge reason the Horned Frogs did not want to play the Badgers for the second time in nine months. Its 2011 schedule is all but full.

TCU took a bit of a beating in the court of public opinion this week when Badgers coach Bret Bielema casually mentioned on a radio show that he had been approached by a third party to play the Horned Frogs in Madison in 2011. TCU turned down the "offer." Words like "rematch" and "ducking" entered the conversation on the always level-headed Worldwide Interweb. 

It wasn't a true rematch in that Wisconsin wasn't willing to return the game. There was no ducking because, in truth, TCU's schedule is about to be finalized. The public just doesn't know about it yet. 

The only other opening on the TCU schedule is expected to be filled by BYU on Friday, Oct. 28 at Cowboys Stadium. Pending the final contracts, that's the way it's going to be. TCU's other non-conference games are against Baylor, SMU, Louisiana-Monroe and Portland State. The Froggies will be playing five non-conference games because there are only seven conference games in its final season in the Mountain West.

AD Chris Del Conte's "Anytime, anyplace, anywhere," blast was in reference to Ohio State after Gordon Gee's "Little Sisters of the Poor," comment during the season. It doesn't apply to Wisconsin which was not committed to a return game. TCU is at a level now that it doesn't have to take one-off games on the road. 

It has future home-and-homes scheduled with Oklahoma, Virginia, LSU and Arkansas.




England, Hong Kong weigh in on the BCS: Nothing like a little foreign influence in the BCS. 

The San Diego State International Sports MBA Case Competition is taking on the postseason system in its annual contest involving some of the world's best MBA programs. Twelve schools are being asked to present their best alternatives for postseason college football. The winning group of students will present their case this summer to Mark Cuban, a noted BCS critic and NBA referee baiter who proposed his own playoff plan last year.

Among the MBA programs involved are San Diego State, UCLA, USC, Cal, Notre Dame, Texas, Florida as well as -- wait for it -- Oxford and Hong Kong University.

"We're really interested in what they say, they have no skin in the game," said Greg Block, a media relations director at San Diego State. 

Per the press release, "The largest hurdle ... is to work around the existing personalities and relationships in the current system, making it possible for an independent, outside company to navigate the existing power structures, earn a profit and enact lasting change that is supported by all (I-A) universities."

A time-saving hint for the MBAers: They might start by calling the Rose Bowl, Big Ten and Pac-12 to figure out how to get those three entities in a playoff. No one inside the system has been able to do it yet.

A winner will be determined Friday night. 



Signed and sealed: If you want to view the inner workings of an NCAA CEO you'll have to wait another 57 years. 

Bumping around the NCAA website this week, I discovered something called the Richard D. Schultz Papers. If that sounds like something akin to presidential papers, you're right. Schultz was the NCAA's second executive director from 1987-1993, following the iconic Walter Byers. During his time NCAA basketball revenue skyrocketed, a football playoff became topical and gender equity became a major issue as Title IX took hold.

The point is, you may have to wait a while to read about it.  Schultz' papers were sealed back in 1993 for 75 years or until 2068. All 111 boxes, taking up 57 linear feet. 

"There are some documents the public will never see," said NCAA librarian Lisa Douglass. 

The records are open only to NCAA employees and to "outside researchers" at the discretion of NCAA librarian, according to the site. I don’t know how much juicy stuff is in there but Schultz was not without a bit of controversy in his career. He resigned in 1993 after an investigation into improper loans given to athletes while he was AD at Virginia. 

Juicy stuff, if you're an NCAA nerd like me and love poking around that that kind of stuff. For some reason Byers' papers are more accessible. Those of Cedric Dempsey, who replaced Schultz and Myles Brand are still being assembled.
Posted on: December 31, 2010 10:47 pm
 

Breaking down Weis to UF

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- If Charlie Weis is about to leave the Chiefs to become Will Muschamp's offensive coordinator, he is taking a demotion.

Not because of Muschamp or Florida. It's simple football job math: Being an offensive coordinator in the NFL is a much better job than being an offensive coordinator in college -- even at a top 10 program like Florida.

In the NFL you don't have to recruit which means you have more time to do your job. No matter what they tell you, most coaches consider recruiting a nuisance. They know it has to be done, but no one grows up dreaming of recruiting. They grow up dreaming of calling ball plays.

That's what Weis does best. He showed that this season with Matt Cassel and the Kansas City offense. Cassel has become a borderline All-Pro. The running game is the best in the NFL. The offense trusts Weis and Weis trusts his players. If this move happes, though, is suggests some underlying friction between Weis and head coach Todd Haley.

It's no secret that Haley has a combustive temper. The same goes for Weis. This could be a clash of two football minds that can't be rectified. But the fact that Haley brought in Weis suggests the head coach subjugated his ego a bit. Haley employed two former head coaches as his coordinators (Romeo Crennel is the D coordinator).

That's why it becomes more than curious if Weis returns to college coaching. The man is not exactly the picture of health. He has a knee is so bothersome that it might require a replacement at the end of the season. In the middle of all that, he is supposed to recruit for a new boss trying to get Florida back to the top? It's not going to be easy.

That's why there would have to be something significant driving Weis away from Kansas City.  
Category: NCAAF
Posted on: December 11, 2010 8:19 pm
 

Muschamp reportedly at Florida

Two pretty good sources say Florida has its new coach.

The Florida Times-Union and Tim Tebow is twittering that Texas defensive coordinator Will Muschamp. Tebow "broke" the news with a tweet at about 8 p.m. ET saying, "Welcome to the Gator family Coach Muschamp."

Muschamp got his SEC head coaching job but not the one many thought it would be. Georgia always seemed to be a threat to call Muschamp back home but that's not the big-time SEC opening that was available. Florida apparently has its man three days after Urban Meyer resigned.

The 39-year-old Muschamp has been the coach-in-waiting at Texas for slightly more than two years. With Mack Brown's future as head coach open-ended, Muschamp can't be blamed for taking one of the best jobs in the country. Currently, he is making $900,000 per year with the Longhorns who, like the Gators, slumped badly this season (5-7). He'll get a hefty raise at Florida where the Gators are coming off a 7-5 season that led to a burned-out Meyer calling it quits this week.

Muschamp is a year younger than Meyer was when he came from Utah after the 2004. The former Georgia safety is a disciple of Nick Saban whose defenses are known for their aggressiveness and innovation.

Two years ago, Muschamp told me, "If I had left Austin, my wife was staying."

Not when Texas is down, Mack Brown's future is unclear and Florida comes calling.

 
Category: NCAAF
Posted on: December 8, 2010 7:27 pm
Edited on: December 9, 2010 11:01 am
 

Florida coaching candidates (updated 12/9)

GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- Welcome to Day 2 of the post-Urban Florida coaching search. This time it's for real. We think.

Florida AD Jeremy Foley says he'd like to have someone hired in 2-2 1/2 weeks. He also says he hasn't contacted any candidates. Of course, he hasn't. That's not the way searches work. Coaches who want to remain anonymous can keep on the down low by speaking to a third party. You can bet some influential Gators have been burning up the phone lines talking to candidates already -- probably some of these candidates.

Here's my list in descending order of probability...

Bobby Petrino, Arkansas:
You know Petrino would come. Moss is practically growing on him by now in Fayetteville. If he does leave, the Hogs cannot whine at all. You knew (or should have known) what you were getting into when you hired this guy.

It would be a good get for Foley, but for how long?

Kyle Whittingham, Utah:
Hire back-to-back Utah coaches? Why not? This is the perfect job at the perfect time for Whittingham. Meyer's former defensive coordinator with the Utes kept the momentum going after his boss left for Florida.

The biggest drawback: Whit is an accomplished head coach already headed to a BCS conference (Pac-12). He could take a bigger step going to the SEC. If they hired him, the Gators would play defense, I guarantee you that.



Dan Mullen, Mississippi State: This is almost too easy. Florida has to call him and Mullen has to accept to get out of StarkVegas after two seasons. Florida's offense hasn't been the same since the former Gators offensive coordinator left.

Here's what bothers me: Mullen isn't exactly known as an aggressive recruiter. His record in two seasons with the Bulldogs is still only 13-11. On the plus side: Steve Spurrier didn't enjoy recruiting either and he did all right. Mullen would unite the Gator Nation, although whoever gets hired is going to be the guy to follow the guy. Never a good thing in the coaching profession. You know what happened here the last time a coaching icon left.

Kevin Sumlin, Houston: Foley loves him.


Jon Gruden, NFL analyst:
This is getting tiring. Gruden's name will come up. It will gain momentum and he won't get the job. Unless they've absolutely fallen in love with him, ADs are wise to his act. Gruden wants to alert NFL GMs and owners that he is available. That's what the whole Miami thing was about.

Chip Kelly, Oregon: If his team wasn’t playing for the national championship I bet he'd more than listen. The timing, though, is a deal breaker. Kelly wouldn't leave until after the BCS title game (Jan. 10) and Florida sure wouldn't wait that long.

Bob Stoops, Oklahoma: There will be some sentiment for Spurrier's former defensive coordinator to come "home". Insiders know that Stoopsie is perfectly happy in Norman, loves his AD (Joe Castiglione) and can continue to compete for Big 12 and national championships each year. Sorry, Gators.

Chris Petersen, Boise State: As much as I like Pete, he wouldn't last three minutes in Florida's media fish bowl. There's a reason he hasn't left yet. Petersen is completely comfortable at a place where he can win forever.

Larry Fedora, Southern Miss: Could be dark horse candidate.

Will Muschamp, Texas defensive coordinator:
If this had happened a year ago -- wait a minute, it did -- Muschamp might have a better chance. Anyway, no matter where the fault lies Muschamp's star fell a little bit this season after Texas' horrid 2010. Muschamp, with an SEC pedigree, could be a fallback candidate if the search hits some snags.

Charlie Strong, Louisville: Florida's former D coordinator is a strong recruiter and great man. Florida needs a rock star. Charlie Strong is not a rock star.

Jim Harbaugh, Stanford: NFL first, Michigan second, Stanford third if neither of the first two open up. Florida isn't going to be option No. 4.

 

Steve Spurrier, South Carolina: Don't. Think. So.

 

Posted on: November 28, 2010 8:20 pm
Edited on: November 28, 2010 8:23 pm
 

UF's Dan McCarney reportedly going to North Texas

North Texas is close to hiring Florida defensive line coach Dan McCarney according to this report.

McCarney is "99 percent sure" he is headed to North Texas according a source who spoke with the coach told CBSSports.com.

The 57-year old McCarney was head coach at Iowa State for 12 years from 1995-2006. He took the Cyclones to five bowl games, winning at least seven games in five of those seasons. In 2000 Iowa State finished 9-3, nearly upsetting Florida State that season.

After leaving Iowa State, McCarney spent one year as an assistant at South Florida before going to Florida as a d-line coach in 2008. His overall head coaching record is 56-85.

McCarney replaces Todd Dodge who was fired on Oct. 20. That leaves five openings in Division I-A -- Colorado, Minnesota, Miami, Indiana and Kent State.

McCarney is the eighth former Urban Meyer assistant to become a head coach. This would be the third straight season a Meyer assistant has left to become a head coach.

Charlie Strong, Florida  - Louisville
Dan Mullen, Florida  - Mississippi State
Doc Holliday, Florida  - Marshall
Kyle Whittingham, Utah  - Utah
Greg Brandon, Bowling Green  - Bowling Green
Mike Sanford, Utah  - UNLV
Tim Beckman, Bowling Green - Toledo

Category: NCAAF
Posted on: October 26, 2010 11:55 am
Edited on: October 26, 2010 1:47 pm
 

National Notes

All Cam Newton all the time? Seems like it especially with the question of the week that has risen up on various talk shows, Twitter accounts and in my brain:

Is Cam Newton better than Tim Tebow? At this point in time the answer is yes. Cammo is bigger (6-feet-6, 250 pounds), stronger (watch him bulldoze those linebackers) and faster than the Gainesville god known as Tebow. Newton won't approach Tebow's numbers because this might be his one and only season at Auburn.

The irony is that Florida had him and let him get away. Actually, Newton admits he let himself get away. The laptop incident didn't help but Newton was being redshirted and had an ankle injury in his final semester with the Gators. Tebow and John Brantley were ahead of him on the depth chart, making it easier for Newton to transfer.

After becoming the national juco player of the year, Newton found the perfect coach (offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn) with the perfect offense at Auburn. The rest you've watched each Saturday. The latest accomplishment was setting the SEC season rushing record by a quarterback -- with four games left.

"He's the best facilitator of the football as a college quarterback," said Pete Cordelli, a former Notre Dame assistant. "He runs his football team like he's a point guard. It's Showtime on the Plains. Who can you take and put on the other 119 teams  and make them better? Can you imagine him at Oregon or Oklahoma? Imagine if he was at Penn State, we wouldn't be talking about Paterno retiring. Imagine him at Ohio State?"

That's a lot of imagining but only one team has him. 


* The next question is whether Newton will go Prince on us and change his name to a symbol: N - mg = ma

(The equation is deciphered below)

* By the way, don't blame Urban Meyer. He's got enough problems. Critics want the Florida coach to get rid of lawbreakers (you might have heard there have been quite a few), but they want to blame him for letting Cam I Am for "getting away."

* If the top of the polls look unfamiliar, they should. Oregon is No. 1 for the second consecutive week in the AP poll. Other than USC, the last Pac-10 team to be ranked No. 1 in the AP poll was Washington in 1992 (five weeks). No. 2 Boise State is the highest ranked WAC team since BYU won the national championship in 1984.

* Boise rant of the week: At what point do 47-point beatdowns of WAC teams in some way equal a seven-point win over LSU. That's why I think Boise could win the SEC East, Big 12 and Big Ten.

* During this Alabama bye week, Nick Saban visited the Touchdown Club of Memphis. One snarky attendee  gave Nick his props and summed up the season properly -- at least from an Alabama perspective: "Congratulations on winning the BCS national championship last year and producing a Heisman Trophy winner. I know expectations are high in the state of Alabama and people expect another national champion and another Heisman winner. Fortunately, those expectations appear to be in reach. Auburn is No. 1 in the BCS and Cam Newton appears to be the leading candidate for the Heisman."

* What's the antidote for arrogance? Mack Brown is trying to figure that out. According to him, that's what Texas has been playing with for too long. Brown who called out his players after the Iowa State loss and, in the process, might have indicted his own motivation skills.

There is no excuse with bowl-bound Baylor coming in. The Longhorns roster routinely is comprised of the best players in Texas, some of the best in the country. Try to explain, then, how Baylor leads the Big 12 South eight weeks into the season. You can't.


* Sometimes we write too much about the winners, the BCS, bowl games, NCAA reprobates. This space is dedicated to the feel-good stories of late October.

Baylor clinched a bowl berth for the first time in 15 years after that Kansas State win. The season looked encouraging but Bears fans had learned not to assume anything. Quarterback Robert Griffin was coming off a blown-out knee. It lost at TCU by 35 earlier in the season.  Griffin now is arguably the best quarterback in the Big 12.
 
Western Kentucky broke a nation-leading 26-game losing streak in beating Louisiana-Lafayette. Akron and New Mexico now share the national lead; each have lost eight in a row. Oh, and another warning for the next Vince Lombardi at Minnesota: The Gophers are next with a seven-game losing streak.

Remember when Ron Zook was on the hot seat? Illinois' coach is a respectable 4-3, having beaten Penn State in the process. Its three losses are no disgrace, to Michigan State, Ohio State and Missouri. Those schools have a combined record of 22-1.

No shame either for Iowa State's Paul Rhoads. The Cyclones are now 4-4, chasing a bowl after beating Texas. Their four losses are to Iowa, Kansas State, Utah and Oklahoma. Combined record: 23-5.

Seven games into his second season, Syracuse's Doug Marrone has the Orange at 5-2, in second place in the Big East, a half-game behind Pittsburgh. (Pittsburgh has beaten Syracuse already so it has the tiebreaker)

For only the second time and for first time in six years Baylor and Iowa State won a Big 12 Conference game on the same day. Also for only the second time in Big 12 history, Texas and Oklahoma lost on the same day when coached by Bob Stoops and Mack Brown.

* Why could Cameron Newton nickname himself "N - mg = ma"? That is more or less the mathematical representation of Newton's first law of motion: An object in motion tends to stay in motion. If I were Newton, Cam not Sir Isaac, I'd copyright that sucker.

 


Posted on: October 21, 2010 5:33 pm
Edited on: October 22, 2010 11:10 am
 

Halfway Son of Weekend Watch List

BCS bowl projections halfway through the season:

BCS championship: Oregon* vs. Alabama*
Rose: Boise* vs. Iowa*
Fiesta: Nebraska* vs. West Virginia*
Orange: Florida State* vs. Ohio State
Sugar: Auburn vs. Oklahoma

*-automatic qualifier

Notes: Oregon and Alabama win out to advance to the championship game. Alabama beats both LSU and Auburn assuring that there will be no undefeated teams in the SEC. It then beats the SEC East champion to advance. Despite one loss, it vaults over undefeated Boise, the TCU/Utah winner and perhaps even Oregon.  It doesn't matter for the Ducks who stay in the top two because undefeated Boise, Utah/TCU can't catch it in the BCS standings. Meanwhile, other current undefeateds Auburn, LSU, Michigan State, Oklahoma and Missouri also lose locking in Oregon. Alabama would be playing for the first back-to-back national championship since Nebraska in the 1990s. Oregon would be playing for its first.

--The Fiesta Bowl would gladly welcome Nebraska which it hasn't had since 2000. West Virginia would be making a second trip to the Valley of the Sun in four years.

--The Orange Bowl gets one of its more intriguing matchups as Florida State returns to the big time returning to a BCS bowl for the first time since 2005. Ohio State has to settle for an at-large berth after failing to win a sixth consecutive Big Ten title. The Buckeyes return to the Orange for the first time since 1977.

--The Sugar is filled with two at-large participants. Oklahoma returns to New Orleans for the first time since the 2004 (2003 season) national championship game loss to LSU.


Ranking the remaining MICs

11. Urban Meyer, Florida: Let's not forget that 20 years ago, Florida football didn't matter. Post-Zooker, Meyer made it a bigger national power than it was under Spurrier.

12. Joe Paterno, Penn State: No matter how his career ends, JoePa will leave the program in great shape.

13. Frank Beamer, Virginia Tech: An example of having patience with a good coach. Beamer started out terribly but the administration allowed him stay. Now he's one of the best in the country.

14. Al Golden, Temple: The nation's hottest young coach has got it back to the point where the Big East should consider inviting back the Owls.

15. June Jones, SMU: The first and only coach to lead the Ponies to a bowl game since the death penalty. That's good enough for me.

16. Mike Riley, Oregon State: Beavers win eight or nine each year and are always a factor in the Pac-10 race. Don't forget the Civil War is in Corvallis this year.

17. Larry Blakeney, Troy: In the same category as Snyder and Paterno on a smaller scale. Would Troy even exist without Blakeney?

18. Pat Hill, Fresno: Never won a WAC title but kept the Bulldogs relevant to the point that they're jumping to the Mountain West.

19. Jimbo Fisher, Florida State: It's early but all the signs are good that FSU will soon be back on the national scene.

20. Bronco Mendenhall, BYU: Like Meyer, Bronco is allowed a down year.

21. Bo Pelini, Nebraska: If the NFL doesn't come calling, Nebraska will begin winning championships again under Bo.

22. Bret Bielema, Wisconsin: Saturday's win allowed BB to make this list. Ohio State was his second win over a ranked Big Ten team. Barry Alvarez' hand-picked guy is trending upward.

23. Greg Schiano, Rutgers: The momentum has slowed since 2006 but Rutgers is back among the living under Schiano to the point that the Big Ten is sniffing around.

24. Pat Fitzgerald, Northwestern: Operating with a low budget against Big Ten giants, the Wildcats are more than competitive with Fitz.

Oregon set the school season scoring record Thursday in the season's seventh game. The Ducks have 386 points and are averaging more than 55 points per game ... Strange how two Big Ten programs defined themselves by invoking Vince Lombardi this week. First Minnesota AD Joel Maturi said, "It's not like he would be replacing Vince Lombardi," of the new coach after firing Tim Brewster. Then Rich Rodriguez said this about his struggling defense: "Listen, Vince Lombardi could come too and [it's] not going to fix some of the problems we have on defense." ... Ohio State (at Minnesota) hasn't lost consecutive games since 2004 ... TCU has lost one fumble this season ... Texas A&M has lost 12 consecutive televised games dating back to 2008. The Aggies play at Kansas Saturday on Fox Sports Net ...

In this Week of the Head Shot in the NFL, it's interesting to note that Arkansas' Ryan Mallett was knocked out of Saturday's game with a concussion. He practiced Tuesday and will play Saturday against Mississippi ... The last six Auburn-LSU games have been decided by six points or less ... Mississippi State is ranked for the first time in nine years ... Until BYU kicked a field goal in Saturday's 31-3 loss, TCU had not allowed a point in almost three games -- 175 minutes, 10 seconds. A third straight complete shutout would have marked the first time in college football since Boston College in 1992.

 

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