John Thompson: "18 hours ago I knew nothing"
New Arkansas State defensive coordinator John Thompson hadn't even been on campus for 24 hours before he sat down to talk about his new job and environment, as well as his connections with the staff Gus Malzahn has assembled.
"18 hours ago I knew absolutely nothing" Thompson said of what he knew coming into his new position. Coming in, he had heard a lot of different stories on what he inherits on the defensive side of the ball and he has been able to recognize the young talent that the staff have been able to bring in since his arrival on campus.
Thompson also talked about his opportunity to join the staffs at Arkansas State in the past, but just felt that the timing wasn't quite right. After talking to Malzahn he said that he knew it was a great opportunity to return to his roots in northeast Arkansas and continue to build the program.
Western Michigan just released a video outlining their winter conditioning obstacle course that they have labeled "The Gauntlet".
The course has a little taste of everything from pushing and pulling a weighted sled, bear crawls, ropes, zig zagging around dummies, and a dead sprint all combined into a team relay set up.
Good stuff from Al Borges
The Big Ten Network's Howard Griffith sat down with Michigan offensive coordinator Al Borges to talk about his first season at the helm of the Wolverine offense, his philosophy, and what it means to be at Michigan.
When asked how he would describe the offense that he ran last season, Borges told Griffin that he has never been the type of coach who wants to run an offense with a name attached to it. "If its got a name, its got a theme, and then everybody will start doing clinics on how to defend it" Borges said.
"It's our job as coaches to make it fit for them, it's not their job to make it fit for you" Borges said about the changes he made when he knew he had Denard Robinson taking snaps for him this season. "The trick is to figure out how to fit your schematics to their skill set" he added.
There's plenty more great stuff in the video.
DeRuyter begins spring ball
Tim DeRuyter and Fresno State started their first of fifteen spring practices yesterday, and you can tell that he and his staff are bringing an up tempo style to both sides of the ball from the video below.
DeRuyter said that they are trying to "front load" a lot of the installation of the new offense and defense and compared the process to the kids trying to "take a sip out of a fire hydrant". He added that they hope to have 80% of the offense installed next week.
The Bulldogs spring game will take place March 25th at noon.
Teaching the ladies
There are worse assignments than to coach 100+ ladies from Louisiana for a day.
Chief, Frank Wilson and the guys seem to have enjoyed themselves and the ladies look like they loved their day as part of LSU football.
McCarney reminds us to smell the roses
Dan McCarney sat down with CBSsports.com's Brett McMurphy to talk about how things have been since his stroke a few weeks ago.
McCarney says that he remembers everything. It all started with a ringing in his ears, and he tried to stand up, but couldn't. He also recalls being scared for his wife and son (who were both in the room when it happened), as well as his two daughters.
"The first thing I'm thinking is my son and wife are right here: Is this it? I'm so emotional for them, not me. I can handle pain. I'm scared for them." McCarney recalled.
After his release, and sorting through countless voicemails and texts, there was one from mentor Urban Meyer. McCarney said that one thing that he learned from Urban after the leave of his own was to start to delegate more and "stick my nose in everything" and overall, just slow down a bit.
"Could I possibility enjoy life any more? I didn't think I could, but I do after that happened, can I cherish being a head coach any more? I didn't think I could, but I do. When those things happen to you, it really brings it into perspective: how much you have, how much you love what you do." he said.
McCarney's quote about the stroke being "nothing anything a little Grey Goose won't fix" was a huge hit on Twitter, and he admits he may have to wait a little longer to indulge in that. "I don't know a doctor yet that says a little Grey Goose will help recover. But after a victory, there's nothing like a Grey Goose."
It's good to hear that Coach McCarney is back to a (more reflective) version of his old self.
Video: Competition is the name of the game
New head coach Tim Beckman has the Illini competing in just about everything during their off season program.
In the video below you can see them competing as they run through bags, in cone drills, bowling, overhead keg carries around a few cones...and possibly even some Dance Dance Revolution (at about the 1:30 mark).
The Illini will kick off their spring game April 14th at 2pm.
Talent identification / development fee?
We don't think there is a coach out there that doesn't believe Gary Andersen is doing a great job at Utah State. This past season, in his third season at the helm, the Aggies won 7 games for the first time since 1993. He took them to a bowl game for the first time in 14 seasons. Yes, football in Logan, UT is pretty good these days and getting better.
One coach that we're certain has noticed is Kyle Whittingham at Utah who Andersen worked with and for at Utah for several years.
In fact, we've noticed that 6 of Whittingham's 9 full-time assistants have direct connections to Andersen.
Kalani Fifita Sitake, Dan Finn and Aaron Roderick were all with Andersen at Southern Utah prior to joining the staff at Utah. Chad Kauha'aha'a, Ilaisa Tuiaki both worked for Andersen at Utah State and we're pretty sure that Jay Hill was recruited to Utah by Andersen while he was on staff there.
Anyone else feel like Andersen should be getting some sort of royalty out of this deal?