Dana Holgorsen: I start with coffee, then switch to Red Bull
People are still talking about the 70 passes and 838 total yards amassed in the West Virginia spring game.
Apparently, the new style of play has somewhat revitalized a fan base, which could purchase over 38,000 season tickets for the first time since 2008. Season ticket sales dipped to 34,000 last season.
The 2011 home schedule includes Marshall, Norkfolk State, LSU, Bowling Green, UCONN, Louisville, and Pitt. More importantly, AD Oliver Luck is working to sell cold beer inside the stadium. (We are hoping Luck understands LSU fans.)
Offensive coordinator Dana Holgorsen has created a buzz, as well. He certainly brings a different style of offense and a different personality to the program.
Holgorsen told the Register Herald, “I start in the morning with coffee and then switch to some sort of energy drink, typically Red Bull. It just keeps you going.”
After the 2011 season, Holgorsen will take over as head coach, but says his relationship with Bill Stewart is fine at this point.
“I think our relationship is fine,” Holgorsen said. “He’s a professional guy, and he’s a nice guy. And I’m a professional guy, and I get along with people just fine.”
Your first chance to watch the West Virginia will be on Sunday, September 4th at 3:30 EST. The Moutaineers will host Marshall and ESPN will broadcast the game.
Urban Meyer talks about 2nd year head coaches
During an interview today with SI.com writer Stewart Mandel, Urban Meyer emphasized how much teams improve under new head coaches from year one to year two.
Meyer won his first national title at Florida in his second season in charge in Gainesville. He also experience outstanding success at Bowling Green and Utah in year two.
Meyer said, “The second year is so much more productive because the first year you are just trying to figure everybody out. It’s a new system, the terminology, the practice routine, all the things that are critical to success are an issue.”
He then pointed out that Brian Kelly is entering his second year at Notre Dame and added, “When I was at Notre Dame (for spring practice), that was like a seasoned football team.”
Here is the list of coaches set to enter their second year at their respective programs:
Rob Ianello (Akron), Jeff Quinn (Buffalo), Dan Enos (Central Michigan), Butch Jones (Cincinnati), Ruffin McNeill (East Carolina), Jimbo Fisher (FSU).
Turner Gill (Kansas), Joker Phillips (Kentucky), Todd Berry (ULM), Sonny Dykes (LA Tech), Charlie Strong (Louisville), Doc Holliday (Marshall).
Larry Porter (Memphis), Brian Kelly (Notre Dame), Lane Kiffin (USC), Skip Holtz (South Florida), Derek Dooley (Tennessee).
Tommy Tuberville (Texas Tech), Bobby Hauck (UNLV), Mike London (Virginia), Willie Taggart (Western Kentucky).
PAC-12 lands awesome TV deal, includes Thursday & Saturday night primetime
The PAC-12 and ESPN have reached a twelve-year agreement to increase exposure via ESPN platforms.
Beginning with the 2012-2013 football season, ESPN will broadcast four Thursday night games and four Friday night games. ESPN will also broadcast the PAC-12 championship game every other year beginning in 2013.
In total, ESPN will air 22 regular-season PAC-12 games annually. ESPN will broadcast a total of five Saturday night PAC-12 games that will kick-off at 10:30 pm EST. Either Fox or ABC will broadcast another five primetime games.
Looking ahead to next season, not part of this particular agreement, ESPN will broadcast four Thursday night games that involve PAC-12 teams. Those games are Arizona at Oklahoma State, Cal at Oregon, USC at Cal, UCLA at Arizona.
Friday night nationally broadcasted games next season include Missouri at Arizona State, and USC at Colorado.
PAC-12 commissioner Larry Scott believes the additional revenue generated by TV deals will reduce stress on the member universities and allow certain schools to add sports that had previously been dropped.
The ESPN / Fox agreement will pay the conference $225 million per year. Last year, the conference only made a total of $60 million in media rights.
So much for lowering expectations, John Chavis can't wait for 2011 season
John Chavis is entering his third year as the defensive coordinator at LSU and couldn’t be any happier.
The longtime Tennessee assistant (1989-2008), Chavis is jacked about the talent, speed, and depth the Tigers have on defense heading into the 2011 season.
During a booster event in Lafayette, LA on Tuesday night, Chavis shared his optimism.
He said, "I'm looking forward to winning some championships. Let me tell you, that's what this team is preparing to do. There's a culture here at LSU, and it's about winning championships. No way are we satisfied with going 11-2 last season."
"We have everything we need here at LSU. I can guarantee you I'm one of the happiest coaches in the country."
LSU opens the season against Oregon in Cowboys Stadium (Arlington, TX). The next three games are against Northwestern State, at Mississippi State, at West Virginia.
Chavis will once again be assisted by Ron Cooper (defensive backs) and Brick Haley (defensive line). New special teams coordinator Thomas McGaughey will also assistant on the defensive side.
Perfect timing: Chip Kelly offers genuine and chilling locker room speech
US troops flooded the Oregon locker room following the Ducks’ spring game. Head coach Chip Kelly’s speech was captured on film.
Last summer, Kelly visited Iraq, Afghanistan, Iran, and Germany as part of the overseas coaches tour. Since the experience, Kelly has expressed numerous times how truly humbling the experience was for him. On several occasions since, Kelly has openly celebrated the courageous and hard work of our troops.
On Saturday, in the locker room surrounded by players and troops, Kelly said, “I can’t tell you how much it means to us for what you guys do. We get a chance to play a great game, and it’s (just) a game. But what you guys do every day, put your lives on the line, sacrifice it for our country, so we can do what we do, we are in awe of you for what you guys do.”
The troops joined the Ducks in singing the fight song, then Kelly encouraged each of the troops to grab a player for a personal tour of the football facility.
He closed by saying, “From the bottom of our hearts, we can’t thank you enough for what you do.”
Here’s the video:
Chizik: We have to replace 30 scholarship players
Gene Chizik is concerned about Auburn’s youth. In fact, thirty scholarship players from the national championship team are no longer with the Tigers.
In five months, Auburn will open with Utah State. A week later, the Tigers will host Mississippi State.
Reflecting back on spring practice, Chizik said, “I just saw a lot of young faces. A lot of kids with some talent, not a lot of experience. Our numbers, obviously, have been affected by over 30 guys that were on scholarship last year that won’t be with our team this year. So you just have to get used to a lot of new faces and a lot of new names, but work really hard.”
To stay near the top in the SEC, Chizik says it’s a year round grind.
“College football is like one big circle; there’s no beginning, and there’s no end,” admitted Chizik. “You just go from one thing to the next. We typically get a little time off in the summer. You try to get away and get your batteries re-juiced for about two weeks. Other than that, it’s just always on the go.”
Some of the notable players that won't be with the Tigers are the four drafted players including QB Cam Netwon, DT Nick Fairley, DT Zach Clayton, and OL Lee Ziemba. Other key losses include Marion Fannin and Darvin Adams.
The Auburn road schedule includes at Clemson, at South Carolina, at Arkansas, at LSU, and at Georgia.
Top 2 overall picks once signed by a Franchione
Looking back on the 2011 NFL draft, it turns out that Dennis Franchione and his son Brad Franchione at one point signed the top 2 overall draft picks.
While serving as the head coach at Blinn College, Brad Franchione signed Cam Newton after the quarterback left the University of Florida.
Dennis Franchione was able to land Von Miller while leading the Texas A&M program.
Not bad for a father-son combo.
In the off-season, Dennis landed his first coaching job since his departure from Texas A&M. He is now the head coach at Texas State University. Not surprisingly, “Fran” hired his son Brad to coach the special teams and linebackers.
Texas State opens at Texas Tech. A week later, the Bobcats travel to Wyoming.
Texas State is moving from D1-AA to the WAC. Fran says one of the biggest obstacles in this transition to D1 is elevating every single part of the program. The Bobcats will compete in the WAC for the first time in 2012.
Weird fact: Did you know there is not a Lone Star Steakhouse in the state of Texas?
Want to talk about a true leader of a football team? Here's one for you.
Leadership. It’s often the difference going from good to great. It’s what college coaches are hoping to get out of their players during voluntary summer workouts when the coaches are not around.
It’s the essence of Drew Brees.
With the lockout ongoing and teams not allowed at their practice facilities, Brees has seized the opportunity to be a leader once again.
Starting today, the Saints surprised many be conducting an organized team workout at Tulane’s practice facility. Brees, the unquestioned leader of the Saints, setup the practice that was attended by numerous veteran players. It's the first of many workouts at Tulane, says Brees.
Asked what he’s trying to accomplish with these workouts, Brees said, “Honestly, it’s to prepare us to have a championship season. That’s obviously our ultimate goal. I feel like the more organized you can be as a team and the more you can communicate during this time, in May, June, July prior to a normal training…the better off you will be once the season does come around.”
“None of us know how long this (lockout) is going to last. This gives us the best position to be successful once the season does start.”
Brees added, “It helps being a veteran team, but also having young guys that are strong character guys and willing to follow the leaders on this team and when you have veteran guys showing up like Sharper, Vilma, Stinchcomb, and countless others, Heath Evans, David Thomas, then others can say ‘These guys are doing the right thing. These guys know how to be a pro and you know what, I want to be there because I want to show them I can be counted on, too.’”
And that, my friends, is leadership!