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"We've definitely upped our talent level"

After Utah's first day of practice yesterday, one thing stood out to Kyle Whittingham.

Entering year two of Pac-12 competition, Coach Whit noted that the Utes have definitely upgraded their talent pool with the latest recruiting class.




McElwain helping to develop a mental edge

Every team in the country hits the weight room hard in the off season, but only a handful of teams are taking training to the next level in the off season.

Jim McElwain invited a mental training coach from IMG Academies to come on campus over the summer to help the Rams develop a mental edge.

According to Examiner.com, IMG came in and put every Colorado State player through a 16 class curriculum  that focused on "self reflection, teaching the young men accountability, social acceptance, character building and leadership." Colorado State was one of only six schools (Alabama, LSU, Oregon, Washington, Florida State) in the country to do that type of training.

McElwain talked about the mindset of the Rams and changing the culture during a press conference yesterday, which reinforced the importance of mental training.

“Anytime it's been a while since you've had success, you think, 'is it me?' Changing a mindset, changing a culture of thought, is something I think is very important.”

“What you do on a daily basis, and how you think, it only carries over into everything you do. It's habits that you do every single day.” McElwain explained.




Mora: "All jobs are open, including mine"

UCLA is one of a handful of programs that is taking their fall camp on the road starting tomorrow.

As Jim Mora explains, there's a multitude of reasons for taking the guys off campus to San Bernardino, perhaps the most important reason being team bonding.

Having everyone in a new environment may also help enhance the competitive nature of the team. As Mora explains, "All jobs are open, every single day, and that includes mine and all of our coaches."




Mullen gives the media guys a freebie

After their first practice of the year, Dan Mullen fielded a few questions from the media guys, and it only took about a minute and a half before he got up to walk out.

A few questions in, Mullen was asked about the status of a few guys in particular that weren't practicing. He answered by reminding the press that they have a policy about talking about injuries...but that wasn't enough to stop them from pressing.

After being pressed further, Mullen got up and made his way for the door, asking them to come up with better questions for tomorrow.

In the end, cooler heads prevailed and Mullen reminded them of the policy before fielding questions on everything from the advantages of having the majority of their freshman class for the entire summer, to the importance of having the flexibility to move and interior offensive lineman to tackle when it comes time to name the travel roster. 

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Wyoming's season teaser...is good

Wyoming went an impressive 8-5 last season, and although the future of the Mountain West is fairly uncertain at this point, Dave Christensen and his guys are quietly building a winner.

After getting ripped by Utah State (63-19), the Cowboys recovered to win 4 of their next 5, including a win over Air Force. Their only loss during that span was an 11 point defeat to TCU.

This video will have the Cowboy faithful ready for their September 1st kickoff against Mack Brown and the Longhorns. It's all less than a month away...




Weis: To me, ND and KU are the same

Kansas players reported to camp yesterday and will get the opportunity to go full pads come Monday.

Weis met with reporters briefly yesterday and talked about how they will measure success in his first year, as well as how the expectations differ at Kansas from his time at Notre Dame.

According to Weis, when it comes to measuring success it all starts in the wins and losses column.

"Did you win all the games you were supposed to win? Did you win some of the games you weren’t supposed to win? You don’t put a number on what that is."

"I can tell you, if you look at it, you won two last year. The fans will say, ‘well if you win four, that’s great improvement,’ What coach in their right mind would be thinking, what if we can just win four games? If so, then you hired the wrong coach."

When asked about expectations being different at Kansas, Weis offered up the following.




Video: Perseverance at its finest

Gallaudet University is a D-III school located in Washington D.C., and was the first school of higher education established in the United States to cater to the needs of the deaf and hard of hearing.

Head coach Chuck Goldstein and the coaching staff are coming off a 5-5 season where none of their five losses came by more than 16 points. Last season produced conference Rookie of the Year, and NFL hopeful, defensive back Tony Tatum. Tatum happens to be hard of hearing, very similar to the level of hearing that Redskins safety Reed Doughty lives with.

Even though he garnered a lot of D-I interest from coaches in high school before breaking his foot, Tatum played two years of basketball at Gallaudet before deciding to give football another try. As a result, Tatum has garnered high praise from coaches and also helped Gallaudet make ESPN with a "tip drill" highlight that was arguably one of the best plays from the 2010 season. The video has got an impressive 1.9 million views on YouTube.

This is a really fascinating story of perseverance and a reminder to us as coaches (and our players) of the importance of fighting through adversity, regardless of the obstacle.




Coaches Poll released

The USA Today Coaches poll was just released.

LSU (19), Alabama (20) and USC (19) shared first place votes, with LSU getting the majority of the points required to take the top spot. 

Seven SEC programs crack the top 25, five of them in the top 10. 

The rest of the poll is as follows:

1. LSU
2. Alabama
3. Southern California
4. Oklahoma
5. Oregon
6. Georgia
7. Florida State
8. Michigan
9. South Carolina
10. Arkansas
11. West Virginia
12. Wisconsin
13. Michigan State
14. Clemson
15. Texas
16. Nebraska
17. TCU
18. Stanford
19. Oklahoma State
20. Virginia Tech
21. Kansas State
22. Boise State
23. Florida
24. Notre Dame
25. Auburn