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Clemson: "We're the total package"
Photos: Washington's new unis
D-II version of "Evolution of Dance"

Well, this is cool...

Larry Fedora's staff will hit the road recruiting on Monday, and they won't be heading out empty handed. 

Take a look at this cool new asset they sent over and that they will be bringing to share with recruits beginning Monday. As you will see in the video, upon opening the "book" the screen awakens like an iPad screen does when you open the cover and nearly immediately a UNC video begins to auto-play. No action needed by the coach or the recruit. Very simple, very cool. The user can then choose to play either of two different videos (which the video staff at UNC can update before the coaches head out on the road...or before sending one of these to a recruit...or a donor). Think about the possibilities here.  

I checked with the UNC staff and these were far less expensive than I expected. Hats off to the UNC staff for being the first to bring these to the "market" but I'm guessing they won't be the last. 

One note that I noticed upon watching the video I took, the quality and clarity of the video within the "book" itself is excellent; however in my video, due to the angle at which I held the camera the quality doesn't come through as well. Trust me, this thing looks great in person. 

We appreciate coach Fedora and their staff for being willing to share this. Thank you.

After thinking more about this, and now that I know the price point, I can really imagine all sorts of applications for a "book" like this. Will share more thoughts in the coming days. Stay tuned...

Hows does a grad assistant make MLB.com you ask? Here's how...

Being a grad assistant requires long hours of thankless tasks with little to no recognition...

Unless you happen to jump out of your seat to snag a line drive at a local MLB game like Minnesota offensive grad assistant Trevor Olson did last night. Even though he seemed surprised to find the ball in his glove, it was a heck of a grab.

No one else in the area even got up to react to the ball flying their direction, so props to Olson on his cat-like reflexes.

The video isn't playable on mobile, so catch the whole thing here. Below is a still shot of the action.


Here are Washington's new unis

Yesterday Washington released their reaction video as they unveiled the new uniforms to the players.

Now we finally get a look at what the Huskies will be wearing as they usher in the Chris Petersen era of the program.

The all black look is sick, and while a lot of loyal Washington fans won't like the absence of the gold pants in the pic below (that combo does exist), the new unis still have a lot of historic appeal, yet still maintain a sense of modern attractiveness that will be a hit with recruits.

See more about the design details and inspiration here.



Clemson markets their program as 'the total package' in this video

Dabo Swinney's Clemson program took some fire earlier this week from an organization who has accused the program of being "too religious". Today Clemson released a video detailing why they're the "total package" when it comes to college football programs.

"If you come here, you're going to have all the resources to help make you successful. This is one of the top 21 private universities in the country, so you're not only competing with the best of the best on the field, but you're competing with the best of the best in the classroom."

"If you take the final top ten, and rank them by graduation rate, Clemson is second. We're seventh in football and second in graduation. There are very few schools that are winning on and off the field at Clemson."

That's the type of stuff that mom and dad like to hear. Towards the end of the video Dabo talks about what recruits really want to hear about, and that's their unique game day atmosphere.

"Monday through Friday we kind of mind our own business and we're in the 'academic' business...but on the weekends, we're in the show business. Then all of a sudden there are 100,000 people rolling into this town and it is just unbelievable."

"The electricity that comes with that, it's like nothing else. It makes grown men cry." Swinney notes.

Current and former players (like Sammy Watkins and Brian Dawkins) also weigh in on what makes Clemson a special place to go to school and play ball throughout the clip.

Great job here by the video staff who produced this one.

Video: D-II staff recreates the YouTube sensation 'Evolution of Dance'

The above "Evolution of Dance" video has accumulated over 258 million views in the past six years. It's one of the most iconic and popular YouTube videos ever. If you're one of the handful of people that hasn't seen it a few times, take a few minutes and soak it in.

Well to wrap up spring ball, the staff at Emporia State University (KS) wanted to keep things light and get a small piece of that pop culture pie.

This is absolutely outstanding, and some of these coaches are going to knock your socks off with their moves. This off season the entire country is doing their own dance off videos, so it's great to see coaches get creative with the trend.

Say goodbye to the Chick-fil-A Bowl, and welcome back the Peach Bowl

One of these things is not like the other:


The six College Football Playoff bowls are undoubtedly the most prestigious in college football, which is why the people running the Playoff wanted a certain symmetry among their names. Which means the Chick-fil-A Bowl had to go. 

ESPN's Brett McMurphy first reported the change a year ago, but it became official on Friday: the Chick-fil-A Bowl will now become the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl. Bowl officials will announce the change at a press conference on Monday according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. 

“It got down to what is our history, what is our heritage, what is our tradition and how can we pay homage to that in our name,” bowl president Gary Stokan told the paper. “We undertook research to find out what is the best name and how it fits with the bowl. That’s how we got back to Peach. We felt it was important to the fans, to the staff and to the volunteers who have committed to the bowl through the years. So we paid homage to the history and the tradition of the bowl.”

The game came into existence in 1968, known then as just the Peach Bowl. Chick-fil-A became the game's sponsor in 1998 and took over the name completely in 2006. While more and more bowls have ceded their names entirely in the name of sponsorship dollars (Russell Athletic Bowl, Capital One Bowl, Outback Bowl among them, and the TaxSlayer (Gator) Bowl is the latest), it's refreshing to see the conference commissioners and Playoff executives place heritage above the almighty paragon of capitalism at least for the game's championship system.

The prediction here is that, since Chick-fil-A held the complete title sponsorship for nearly a decade, many media outlets will still (frustrating as it may be to a purist like me) refer to the game as the Chick-fil-A Peach, completely forgetting that every other Playoff bowl - (Discover) Orange, (Allstate) Sugar, (Tostitos) Fiesta, to name three - also have title sponsors that get left off in the majority of instances.

The Peach Bowl, which remains a New Year's Eve institution, will host a College Football Playoff semifinal in 2016, 2019, 2022 and 2025, and the game will move from the Georgia Dome to the Atlanta Falcons' new retractable roof stadium in 2017. 

Mark Emmert asks for questions on Mike and Mike, and it doesn't go well

The bright minds at ESPN Radio and the NCAA thought they had a nice idea on their hands. With NCAA president Mark Emmert scheduled to appear on nationally syndicated morning show "Mike and Mike", the powers that be thought it would be a good idea to open up the forum to Twitter questions for Emmert. 

It wasn't a good idea.

Like it or not, the general public is becoming more and more fed up with the perceived plight of the student-athlete, and especially so with the guy paid seven figures a year to head the NCAA.

Ask Emmert

That wasn't all.

I didn't hear the segment, I only got to follow along through the greatness of Twitter. But from what I saw, Emmert didn't exactly do his cause any favors.

Would you use a spring practice to teach players how to approach summer? Sark did

Urban Meyer famously said that hiring Mickey Mariotti as his head strength coach was his most important hire after taking the job at Ohio State because strength coaches spend so much more time with players due to NCAA restrictions on coaches during the summer.

One of the most important times in player development is over the summer, when players have a full off season of the weight room and spring ball under their belts and look to take that momentum into the summer. During that summer session of their time will be spent with the strength staff (or holding practices on their own accord ), while the coaches have to take a more "hands off" approach for a few months.

With just two spring practices left, Steve Sarkisian decided to get proactive and start to train his guys how to practice over the next few months without the coaches. With just 15 spring practices allowed by NCAA rules, using one or two of them of it to prepare your guys for the summer is an interesting strategy that actually makes a ton of sense.

 After practice last night Sark explained their strategy.

"We really spent practice on trying to get our players prepared for summer when we, as coaches, don't get to be out here, and when our strength coaches don't get to be out here and these guys are out here working together in the summer preparing for fall camp. We want to make sure that they're doing things the right way."

"We want to be sure that they're warming up properly, that the leaders are stepping up, that there is organization, that they understand how to practice, because the big key is that we want to get better, but we also want to prevent injury."

"So that was the emphasis of today's practice, was really teaching these guys to coach one another through a summer practice because we're going to have about 16 of these through the summer, and it's imperative to our success that one, they get better and are working together well, but two, that we're also preventing injuries, which is key."

It's an interesting strategy that would be viewed differently from the FBS to the NAIA and Junior College levels, but it got me to thinking; With a set number of practices to get things accomplished with a new team (void of most, or all, of your incoming freshman class), how many coaches agree with Sark's strategy? Why or why?

Email or tweet your take to [email protected] or @CoachSamz (or leave them in the comments below), and I'll update the article with the best opinions from around the country. Be sure to add what level you coach at for context.

UPDATE 1: A few coaches have reached out to us to tell us that North Texas has followed a similar plan. They held their spring game as part of practice #14 and then used practice #15 similarly to how Sark ran practice last night.