Team competition day: Coach vs. Player

Somehow we all know how this one is going to end...but still this is just fun to watch. 

Akron strength assistant Donald Day suits up to take on one of the fastest players on the team. 


Photos: Mark Dantonio live tweeted a tour of the Spartans' new locker room

No one would describe Mark Dantiono's Twitter game as Rose Bowl eligble, but he does command a decent presence on the social media platform.

That "presence" reached a whole new level today as he decided to snap some pics of the new locker room and graphics around the football facility to share with everyone. Most of the tweets have already eclipsed the 100 retweet / favorite mark within an hour of going public.

Last May when we went and visited East Lansing, the entire staff walked away impressed with the current facilities, and we also got the opportunity to sit down with Dantonio and talk about SEC and Pac 12 facilities. The first questions that coach Dantonio asked when we sat down with him in his office was "What can we do to get better?" and "What are other programs doing with facilities that we aren't?".

As you can see from the updates around the facility, Dantonio was as sincere as can be and is always looking for ways to get better.

Paul Rhoads on what Mark Mangino brings to Iowa State: "Simplicity"

Rare is the staff where the offensive coordinator has a more accomplished resume - as a head coach - than the head coach himself. But after a season in which Iowa State finished eighth in a 10-team league in total offense, ninth in yards per play, and ninth in scoring, it's a necessary one.

Rhoads had what amounts to a line change on his staff last season with the exchange of six assistants. "That's a lot of change. That's a lot of transition," he said. Highlighting that list, unquestionably, is Mark Mangino. Mangino won the Broyles Award in 2000 for his efforts as Oklahoma's offensive coordinator in driving the Sooners to a national championship, and then earned national coach of the year accolades for taking Kansas to the Orange Bowl in 2007. 

Mangino was the first coach in college football history to win both honors, and has since been joined by Gene Chizik, David Cutcliffe and Gus Malzahn. 

Rhoads and Mangino both hail from western Pennsylvania, though they did not know each other personally until the interview process. "I coached against him in 2009, my first year as the head coach at Iowa State," Rhoads said," and then his proven track record as a play caller, as a tough guy, type of coach in what he could bring to our offensive mentality that way, but at the very top of the list was the simplicity with which his offenses have had success, and that was something that our program needed."

The look and feel of the 2014 offense should be similar to 2013, especially with playmakers Quenton Bundrage and Aaron Wimberly returning, but the functionality should be much cleaner this time around. "We're going to be a spread system. It's a generic term but we're going to deploy at lot of three wide reciever sets one back offense. We're not going to huddle. Those are familar," Rhoads said. "The change I think you're going to see will be in the very pace that we utilize and also the simplicity of what it is that we're trying to accomplish. We're not smart enough in Ames and even though it has several nicknames that would indicate that, that we're going to go out and outsmart other coaches and other teams, we want to be simple where our kids can execute at a high rate of speed, and I think that's exactly what Mark brings to our offense."

Mangino was out of coaching in between his final season at Kansas and his one-year stint as Youngstown State's offensive coordinator last fall. In between that time, Mangino's wife Mary Jane battled cancer (which she has now beaten), which Rhoads believe has provided him with a different perspective.

"He was anxious to get back to this level," Rhoads said. "He and his wife Mary Jane had been through cancer. I think he gained a different perspective on the game, let them step back and get back to it at Youngstown State and get the taste for it. He wasn't going to just jump back in at any job. I think he saw the opportunity for success at our place. He liked the way that the program was being run. He knew that we're full of toughness from playing us in 2009 and talking to other people that had been playing us since then."

Day 2 of Big 12 Media Day: Stoops, Rhoads, Holgo, Snyder, and Strong

We're rolling into Day 2 of coverage at Big 12 Media Day, where the day will start off with Oklahoma's Bob Stoops (10am CST), followed by Paul Rhoads (10:30am), Dana Holgorsen (11pm), Bill Snyder (11:30) and Charlie Strong (noon).

Check back throughout the day for all the pertinent updates.

10:00am CST - Oklahoma head coach Bob Stoops

10:30am CST - Iowa State head coach Paul Rhoads

11:00am CST - West Virginia head coach Dana Holgorsen

11:30am CST - Kansas State head coach Bill Snyder

12:00pm CST - Texas head coach Charlie Strong

The most "DFO" answer ever

I've spent some time around James Franklin and his staff over the past few years. They work hard, they play hard, they are always thinking about what is in the best interests of their program and their players and they almost always have smiles on their faces. It's not easy to do all of this unless you have an excellent support staff.  

Having spent plenty of time with Penn State director of football operations Michael Hazel over the years, I can attest that he is truly one of the better guys at his craft. He keeps the wheels greased for the program and keeps everything moving in the right direction. 

Well, this morning I saw this video in which James Franklin went back to his alma mater to speak at graduation. I noticed that Michael Hazel is the one guy who traveled with Franklin. I've got the video below set to play at the relevant mark; but you simply have to see this two minute segment for yourself. Hazel's response to what do you like to do late at night is truly the most "DFO" answer ever. 

Head coaches around the country will laugh at this clip...and then they will think to themselves, "Man, I wish I had a guy like that on my staff."

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