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Luke Fickell explains his plan as Ohio State head coach

Having watched Luke Fickell’s introductory press conference, our first reaction was simply that Fickell is totally jacked to be the head coach of the Buckeyes.

Fickell was loving the spotlight, had answers, and shared a specific vision.

According to Fickell, the emphasis will be on 1) Respect  2) Toughness  3) Being men of action.

Asked why he was the right guy for the job, Fickell stated, “It’s starts with understanding what it takes, what it means to be a Buckeye. Understanding what the foundation is and maybe having some ideas how we can get better in places. Also, knowing this state…”

Fickell said, “It’s about something bigger than a coach.  And that’s what we’ll hammer home with them (recruits) continually.”

“We are going to continue to educate, educate, educate our guys.”

“Ohio State’s expectations will not change.  We will embrace the expectations of being a Buckeye.”

“I’m a Buckeye through and through.  Yes, it hurts at times.  But we are going to continue to move the program forward.  I’m not going to say I’m not disappointed, I'm not upset, but we’re moving forward.”

“We’re looking at this as a way we can get better.  How can we take this situation and make us better?”

“Our biggest challenge is the kids.”

“It’s a daily grind. We will attack those situations as they arise.”

Fickell mentioned that he would hire a defensive assistant to fill the open position on the staff.  He could also shift around some special teams responsibilities.

He finished the presser by saying, "I just want to say one thing.  We will have three goals this year...to lead the nation in effort, turnovers, and toughness."

Clemson coordinator Chad Morris admits clear advantage for the offense

Several weeks ago, South Carolina defensive coordinator Ellis Johnson made the statement that hurry-up offenses are deteriorating college football.

Having coached at the college level since 1975, Johnson made some terrific arguments, mainly centering around the notion that offensive coordinators clearly have an unfair advantage with today’s rules.

Our article with Johnson’s quotes was one of the highest viewed articles ever in FootballScoop history.

Now, Clemson offensive coordinator Chad Morris is admitting what Johnson believes.

Morris, who joined Dabo Swinney’s staff in the off-season after a season at Tulsa, believes the NCAA will change the rules eventually to even the playing field.

Morris told The Post & Courier, “I still think the hurry-up system is still on that cutting edge. You are starting to see a few more teams doing it, but you are going to see a lot more teams doing it over the next five to eight years.”

“What I think will eventually happen is you'll see college football change its rules to try not to give the offense an advantage. I think that's coming. I don't know when, and I don't know if they are going to go back to the 25-second clock or what -- there is talk out there. But I think you are going to see something eventually change and go back to a more level playing field."

Morris and Johnson will coach against each other for the first time in Columbia on November 26th.

Father points to 9-1 record against Michigan, his son Tressel will keep the name

Lebron coming up short will certainly be the main news in the state of Ohio on this Monday June 13, 2011.  Bar managers are already expecting a better than normal “happy hour” this afternoon, as many in Cleveland will raise their glasses and give cheers to King James’ failure to win a title last night.

But there’s another story that will be coffee room talk.  This one comes from The Columbus Dispatch.

Writer Jeffrey Sheban has tracked down several parents who decided to name their newborns “Tressel” back in the early 2000’s.

Sheban talked with the parents of Tressel Cochran, Tressel McCoy, Tressel Miller, Tressel Bockover, and so on.  Let’s be serious, anyone known as Tressel might not be trusted as easily.

Anyone considering name changes?

Brent Huffines, father of Tressel Huffines, said, “Do I have any regrets? No. I think he got a raw deal, and she (my wife) thinks he got a raw deal. Tressel was 9-1 against Michigan, and I still respect him off the field."

There was no statement from Mr. Huffines on if Tressel had gone 5-5 against Michigan.

Another parent, Katie Bockover, said, "People are asking if she's changing her name. Absolutely not. No remorse, no regrets, no way."



Holgorsen explains his plan during unusual presser

In case you missed the news, it’s understandable.

Dana Holgorsen was introduced as the West Virginia head coach on Friday evening while you were out to dinner.  Before your waiter even brought your appetizer to the table, the press conference was over. (Less than 14 minutes)

Holgorsen did have time to acknowledge, “This is the chance of a lifetime.  I understand that.”

He explained, “I will say that nothing will change offensively, nothing will change defensively, nothing will change from a special teams standpoint.  We’re going to go on as we were in the last practice of the spring.”

So what’s your message to the team going to be?

“Stay the course….nothing is changing,” said a typically relaxed Holgorsen.  “The one thing that will be stressed everyday is unity.  Everyone needs to be in this thing together.  That’s from a player’s standpoint, coach’s standpoint, administrative standpoint, and fan’s standpoint.”

He added, “The West Virginia University football team is way bigger than me.  It’s way bigger than any former coach, player, former player, any of that.”

“The timetable had been set in December, it’s just been accelerated a little bit.”

“We’ll be united as coaches, players, administrators, and fans to bring championships here to Morgantown.  I look forward to many, many days to singing Country Roads through a whole bunch of wins here in the near future.”

West Virginia athletic director Oliver Luck did not address much at all regarding Bill Stewart stepping down.  He did blame the distractions of the last few weeks as the reason for asking for Stewart’s resignation.

Here is the press conference video:

Players eligible for frequent-flyer miles on team flights

On this unusually slow Friday morning, we’d like to send a salute to Cleveland Plain Dealer writer Bill Lubinger, who uncovered some good stuff, and has subsequently reported the information in his article this morning.

Lubinger asks you to consider the following: “A university arranges for its players, not the college, to earn frequent flyer miles for road trips.”

NCAA violation?

Answer: Permissible.

According to NCAA compliance, “Student-athletes may earn frequent-flier miles when traveling for practice or competition, depending on the university. But staff members can't roll their miles over to a student-athlete.”

Of course, most teams charter a plane, so frequent-flyer miles are not available.  In the NFL, the teams pay for the flights, but the individual players are able to add the frequent-flyer miles, not the teams.

Still, presumably, a number of director of football operations (DFO's) are hoping this article slides down the FootballScoop homepage before their head coach becomes aware of the benefit.  Talking about a nightmare for DFO's.  Paper work, questions, procedure, compliance, etc.

Our guess, look for an Andy Staples special next week to see which schools are providing this benefit.

According to this frequent-flyer comparison chart, you would be smart to take advantage of the benefits offered by either United or Alaska Airlines, the only airlines to rank with over “A” rating.

Here are 7 programs that could take serious advantage of frequent-flyer miles this year:

San Jose State will fly to: UCLA, Colorado State, BYU, LA Tech, Utah State, and Fresno State.

Stanford will fly to: Duke, Arizona, Wazzu, USC, and Oregon State

New Mexico State will fly to: Minnesota, San Jose State, Hawaii, Georgia, LA Tech, BYU

Navy will fly to: Western Kentucky, South Carolina, Rutgers, Notre Dame, SMU, and San Jose State

Boise State will fly to: Atlanta (Georgia game), Toledo, Fresno State, Colorado State, UNLV, and San Diego State

Southern Miss will fly to: Marshall, Virginia, Navy, UTEP, and East Carolina

Tulane will fly to: Duke, Army, East Carolina, SMU, Rice, and Hawaii

Syracuse will fly to: USC, Tulane, Louisville, Pitt

Notre Dame AD talks future scheduling and primetime kick-offs

Notre Dame athletic director Jack Swarbrick says the Irish will “look to look to do an off-site game with an SEC opponent at some point, but we don’t have one on the immediate horizon.”

This comes on the heels on last month's statement by head coach Brian Kelly that Notre Dame will not be taken seriously until they beat an SEC opponent.

What about night games?

The Irish will host USC in a primetime kick-off this season in South Bend, but don’t expect multiple night time kick-offs in the near future.

Swarbrick said, “No. I think that’s highly unlikely. We’ll evaluate this after this one-year experiment and see how it goes. And if it works well, we’ll do another one, but I don’t see multiple ones.”

Right now, if you have an extra $1782, you can visit StubHub and buy two sideline tickets near the fifty yard-line for the USC game.

Swarbrick said, “Our approach to game day has changed pretty dramatically, generally. There’s a whole different structure, different way we approach it. And I think in the past year especially – perhaps the past two years – you could really see a difference in the atmosphere around game day and the experience people are having. So I felt comfortable, with that infrastructure in place, with that altered approach in place, it was time to try it (primetime kick-off) again.”

Writer calls out the NCAA, makes interesting points

College Football News writer Pete Fiutak has called out the NCAA.

In a lengthy breakdown, Fiutak has provided the NCAA with several options to turn around the negative attention currently surrounding the world of college football.

The most interesting part of Fiutak’s report deals with his prediction that the large TV deals will soon lead to the TV networks having power over the NCAA.

Fiutak writes, “Even stickier will be the lucrative TV deals, because very, very soon the networks that paid billions of dollars for the rights to the biggest college football games and the top showcase teams will demand to have some say in the matter about how the Ohio States and USCs of the world are punished.”

“Imagine telling Fox that the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox are on probation and probably won’t be good enough to make the playoffs over the next three years. What if a major network bought the rights to the AFC only to later find out that Pittsburgh and New England were ineligible to win the Super Bowl? Eventually there’ll be a butting of heads considering so much money and so much exposure is at stake, and at some point some TV executive is going to break something tasteful if another top BCS program gets crushed because some dopey booster gave a kid a car.”

Fiutak suggests that one option is the NCAA should say, “Play time is over, boys.” 

“The NCAA should come out and say that anything and everything that happened before June 1, 2011, and isn’t currently being investigated, will be forgotten and forgiven. Congratulations everyone, you got away with it. More power to you. However, going forward, play time is over.”

Take a look at the options that Fiutak suggests including The Right Way, The Wrong Way, and My Way.

Guys sleeping in tents

The Cameron Crazies do it when UNC comes to town.  iPhone fanatics are known to do it on launch day.  We're sure there are better examples; but that's what we've got this morning.

People sleep in tents when they are passionate about the experience and can't wait to be the first to experience the feeling.

Well, for football coaches; about the closest opportunity we have for this feeling is coming next week...the Angelo Football Clinic.  

The preseason magazines have all rated this the best speaker lineup of this Summer and where else do you get the opportunity to spend a few hours one on one with this caliber of speaker after they finish speaking to the group as a whole?  Great format, something everyone should experience.  

Update>>>> The leadership of the clinic has called to inform us that there actually are a few number of hotel rooms still available so no need for the camping equipment this time...unless you really just want to.  If you do decide to camp out, remember to pack heavy on the Keystone Lights.  You never know who might join you to talk ball.