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Jerry Kill: Our only goal as a staff is one thing...

Minnesota head coach Jerry Kill, fresh off his #1 ranking from Athlon’s College Football Preview, hit the speaking circuit yesterday in the great state of Minnesota.

Kill told a group of Gopher fans, “The thing that we want from you more than anything is your loyalty, we want your support.  It’s going to be tough.  It won’t be easy.  Some days you’ll say, ‘Boy, I don’t know.’”

“Everywhere I’ve been, when we started, they’ve said ‘Boy, I don’t know.’ You can’t change things over night.  You’ve been patient for a long time.  I know some of you say, ‘Too damn long.’  I understand that.  I wish I had a magical wand or a crystal ball to make it right.”

“Our only goal as a staff is one thing…I want to see you smile and I want you to say ‘Boy, I’m proud of that football team and they reflect the great state of Minnesota.”

“Change is hard.”

“I’ll be honest with you.  We have a vision.  It’s not going to be easy.”

The Gophers open at Southern Cal.  The next three games are in Minnesota against New Mexico State, Miami (OH), and North Dakota State.




Oliver Luck: Would I do it again? I don't know.

West Virginia athletic director Oliver Luck just completed a radio interview with 93.7 The Fan in Pittsburgh.

As you probably know, there have been a number of stories that have surfaced recently regarding Dana Holgorsen and Bill Stewart.  We have been hesitant to mention the news because several stories have seemed skepitcal at best.  We wanted to hear from the horse's mouth.

Holgorsen and Stewart have yet to speak publicly, but here are the interesting comments from Oliver Luck:

“I’d be the last one to deny that we're in a little bit of a controversy.”

“It’s difficult to know what’s fact and what’s not.  I’ve got to have to time to figure that out.  I can’t really say much at this point beyond that.”

“We are having a little bit of drama.  I think the program is in pretty good shape.  We can get this all sorted out.”

“My information has left me with a high level of confidence that there were a number of blatant inaccuracies of these allegations (with Holgrosen).”

“I have a high level of confidence in his (Holgorsen’s) persona and discipline.”

Asked if he would make the coaching in-waiting hire again, Luck said, “I thought it made sense at the time.  Dana was given the opportunity to come in and focus on the offense, for Stew to act as the mentor, give him a bit of understanding of the state and the culture of Mountaineer football.  So in my mind, I thought in made some sense. In retrospect, we can all second guess.  Would I do it again, I don’t know.”




A Rocky Ending: Mike Hamilton to resign today

According to WBIR in Knoxville, athletic director Mike Hamilton will resign today as the athletic director at Tennessee.

Hamilton has been the athletic director at Tennessee since 2003, when he replaced Doug Dickey.

During his tenure, Hamilton hired Bruce Pearl, Lane Kiffin, and Derek Dooley.  He also made the decision to ask for the resignation of former head football coach Phil Fulmer.

In 2007, Hamilton dismissed successful baseball coach Rod Delmonico, who led the Vols to two SEC titles and three College World Series appearances.  Delmonico was the national coach of the year in 1995.

Most recently, Hamilton dismissed head baseball coach Todd Raleigh.

The resignation comes before the NCAA hearings for recent voilations against the basketball and football programs.

Oh, let the "Phil Fulmer for AD" rumblings begin.

UPDATE: During his press conference today, Hamilton said, "I think today was inevitable. I need to close this chapter of my life and move ahead."




Mike Leach creates a Top 9 list

Mike Leach seems down on the state of college football at the current moment, so he went to the keyboard on Monday.  

Leach, who many believed was portrayed in an unfair manner by the media, used twitter to share his thoughts.

@Coach_Leach wrote, “Football is a world of overreacting to a number of things.”

Here’s the list that followed:

1) Notion that everybody cheats.                                                                   
2) The main individual at fault is always the HC
3) Oversigning.
4) All athletes are broke.
5) Media's role as arbitrator.
6) Players don't know the difference between right & wrong.
7) The notion Coaches search for ways to cheat.
8) The notion administrators are blind to everything.
9) Notion boosters easily controlled.

Leach is currently living in Key West, Florida (perhaps in the house below).  He co-hosts the College Football Playbook on Sirius/XM hosted with Jack Arute.  The show airs from 12 - 3 pm EST on channel 91.  Tune in, today.  Should be a good one.

keywest




Doug Marrone: Those are the people we should be helping, not the players

Syracuse head coach Doug Marrone has a unique take on the issue of paying student-athletes.

To say the least, Marrone is on the opposite side of the spectrum than Steve Spurrier, who proposed paying student-athletes $300 per game.

Marrone told The Post-Standard, “I think the focus is so wrong when it’s put on the student-athletes.”

“It should be put on those people who can’t afford to go to school. Or on those people whose parents are working two and three jobs to send them to college. Or on those people who work and go to school part-time or full-time or through the summer. Or on those students behind the counter who are serving food to their peers or washing their peers’ dishes to pay for their education.”

“The question should be: How do we get them an opportunity? Those are the people we should be trying to help. Not the student-athletes because when you think about it, they have pretty good lives.”

“The fact is, at the end of the day scholarship athletes don’t have the kinds of financial difficulties that other students incur.”

Marrone is set to enter his third season as the head coach at Syracuse.  The Orange has finished 4-8 and 8-5 in his first two seasons.  Syracuse opens the 2011 season against Wake Forest, Rhode Island, and at USC.




Shocker: Tubs wants 2004 title

The BCS has officially stripped the national championship from USC for the 2004 season.

USC athletic director Pat Haden said, "The BCS alerted us today that their presidents have voted to vacate USC's 2005 BCS Championship Game victory. This was not an unexpected outcome.  We will comply with all requirements mandated by the result of this BCS vote."

In a move everyone from Istanbul to Opelika saw coming, former Auburn head coach Tommy Tuberville now wants the title.

In 2004, Auburn ran the table, going 14-0 including a Sugar Bowl win over Virginia Tech. That year, Auburn defeated LSU 10-9, Georgia 24-6, Alabama 21-12, and Tennessee in the SEC Championship game 38-28.

Today, Tuberville stated, "Someone should be awarded title. If not, the team that had to forfeit is not really punished."

Auburn finished #2 in both the AP and Coaches polls that year.  Tubs was honored as the national coach of the year.

The captains of the undefeated Tigers were Cadillac, Ronnie Brown, Jason Campbell, Carlos Rogers, and Bret Eddins.  Players!




If Greg Schiano gets his way, then start training your son to punt

Perhaps inspired by the Eric LeGrand situation, Rutgers head coach Greg Schiano believes he has a better and much safer alternative for kick-offs.

According to Star-Ledger, Schiano’s thinking is:

Replace all kickoffs with a punting situation, including after the opening coin toss and to start the second half. So, as an example, when Team A scores a touchdown, it immediately gets the ball back on a fourth and 15 from its own 30-yard line.

It can punt it back to Team B — the most likely outcome and a safer play since the bigger collisions usually happen on kickoffs.

Or it can line up and go for the first down, essentially replacing an onside kick with an offensive play that would require more skill than luck.

Schiano says, “It would lead to much less impact and fewer collisions, but it would still be a way to get the game started in similar field position.”

This makes us wonder if all it’s going to take is one more significant injury, maybe to a well-known player, and kick-offs are done.

If you have a ten year-old son, make sure he is punting.  Punters are going to become a premium for college coaches.  In reality, punters will become so valuable that coaches will likely put two punters on scholarship.  

After college, you can betr the average NFL salary for a punter will nearly double the current earnings.




2011 special teams analysis

Heading into the 2011 season, twenty-five BCS programs return the combination of their starting place-kicker and punter.  On the flip side, seventeen programs must replace both their starting place-kicker and punter.

Several off-season coaching changes will lead to a different identity on special teams at several places.

In the off-season, Dabo Swinney and Mack Brown split up the special teams responsibilities amongst the staff. Steve Spurrier hired former Minnesota special teams coordinator John Butler when Shane Spurrier departed for Virginia Tech.

When Joe Robinson left LSU for North Carolina, Les Miles hired former NY Giants assistant special teams coach Thomas McGaughey as the new special teams coordinator at LSU.  Robinson was honored as the FootballScoop Special Teams Coordinator of the Year in 2010.

Some of the new special teams coordinators include Charles Bankins (Vanderbilt), Michael Barrow (Miami), Dan Ferrigno (Michigan), Lyndon Johnson (Maryland), Clayton White (UCONN), Mark Hagan (Indiana), J.D. Brookhart (Colorado), and Randall McCray (Pitt).

Here are the 25 programs that return the combination of starting kicker and punter:

ACC: Boston College, Clemson, FSU, Duke, Virginia

Big 12: Iowa State, Oklahoma, Texas

Big East: UCONN, Louisville, South Florida

Big Ten: Indiana, Purdue, Wisconsin

PAC-12: Cal, Oregon, and Washington

SEC: Georgia, Kentucky, Vanderbilt, Alabama, Arkansas, Ole Miss, Mississippi State

Independent: Notre Dame 

Here are the 17 programs that must replace both starters from a year ago at place-kicker and punter:

ACC: Maryland, NC State, Georgia Tech, Miami, Virginia Tech

Big 12: Kansas, Texas Tech

Big East: Pitt

Big Ten: Nebraska

PAC-12: Arizona State, Colorado, USC, Utah

SEC: Auburn, LSU, South Carolina, Tennessee

Here are the 14 programs that return only the starting place-kicker:

Arizona, Baylor, Florida, Illinois, Iowa, Michigan State, Missouri, Rutgers, Syracuse, Texas A&M, UNC, Wake Forest, Washington State, and West Virginia

Here are the 11 programs that return only the starting punter:

Cincinnati, Kansas State, Michigan, Minnesota, Northwestern, Ohio State, Oklahoma State, Oregon State, Penn State, Stanford, UCLA,