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Cignetti & IUP a great fit

Tonight Curt Cignetti leads the D-II Crimson Hawks of IUP (1-0) against 8th ranked Bloomsburg (2-0) in a game televised on CBSSN and which will stream live on the NCAA's website.

This past off-season Cignetti, who was the wide receivers coach and recruiting coordinator at Alabama, accepted the head coaching position at IUP, the same position his dad held for 20 years (1986-2005).  Cignetti's father, Frank, led IUP to the national championship game twice and the program finished in the Top 25 19 times in 20 seasons.  

Curt Cignetti spoke recently about his decision to accept the position, "It is a little bit of a different move, but it was the type of challenge and opportunity that I really wanted.  I maybe could have stayed at Alabama or gone on to the NFL and stayed an assistant coach for the next 15 years but I really wanted to be a head coach.  It will also give me a little more time around my family.  At places like Alabama, you’re gone a lot recruiting and you sort of lose contact with the people that are important to you.  It was a little bit of a lifestyle shift.”

At IUP, Frank Cignetti attends every practice, "I watch practice but I don’t say anything.  Believe me, he’s been around a lot of great coaches and been mentored well by them. His opportunity to work with Nick (Saban) at Alabama put the icing on the cake for him as far solidifying his philosophy and views on how he wants to run a program. I’m strictly a spectator.”

One thing that Cignetti has had to adjust to is the massive difference in budget coming from Alabama, "The money and things that come with (being at a large Division I school) … you take for granted at places like Alabama.  At a Division II school you wear a lot more hats. You have a lot less personnel in the office to help do things like order equipment and schedule facilities and travel itineraries. You’re involved in a lot more things at this level that you never had to worry about at the Division I level.”




Money plays

Whenever we notice game checks, we like to keep everyone informed of the market.  Today, we've got Idaho's numbers for this year.

This year, the Vandals travel to Texas A&M (for $850,000), to Virginia (for $700,000) and to BYU (for $500,000).  

Idaho has also stroked some checks, paying both Bowling Green (which beat Idaho 32-15 in week 1) and North Dakota (who Idaho beat 44-14 in week 2) $125,000 each to come play in Moscow, ID.  




UFL Staffs - Virginia and Omaha

So, the UFL season opener is tonight.  For those that might have lost track, the league this year is playing with 4 teams (Virginia, Omaha, Sacramento and Las Vegas).  

Virginia and Omaha play tonight while Vegas and Sacramento play Saturday night.  The league tells us that all tevelvised games will be streamed live on www.ufl-football.com; unfortunately tonight's game is not televised and thus will not be streamed. 

We thought we'd take this opportunity to catch you up on the current staff's of the 4 teams (will give you Virginia and Omaha now...the other two on Saturday as a reminder of that game).  

Virginia:

Head Coach - Marty Schottenheimer

Offensive Coordinator - Terry Shea

Running Backs - Gerald Carr

Wide Receivers - Bobby Saunders

Offensive Line - Bill Laveroni

Tight Ends - Chet Fuhrman

Defensive Assistant - Kurt Schottenheimer

Defensive Line - John Marshall

Assistant Defensive Line - Delbert Cowsette

Linebackers - James Willis

Defensive Backs - Lionel Washington

Special Teams - Mike Stock

 

Omaha: 

Head Coach - Joe Moglia

Offensive Coordinator - Bart Andrus

Offensive Line - Don Lawrence

Running Backs / Tight Ends - Brock Olivo

Wide Receivers - Kevin Daft

Quality Control / Offensive Line - Robert Hunt

Defensive Coordinator - Tom Olivadotti

Defensive Line - Brandon Noble

Defensive Backs - Pete Kuharchek

Quality Control / Defensive Line - Mike Gallagher

Special Teams - Richard Kent

 

 

 




Thursday TV

First order of business, we need to set the record straight...no, Les did not show up at Mississippi State's Cowbell Yell last night.

Now, let's get to the TV schedule.  "Have a nice day!"

NFL:

None

College:

LSU at Mississippi State - 8PM - ESPN

Bloomsburg at IUP - 8PM - CBSSN

High School:

Cherokee Trail (CO) at Mullen (CO) - 7:30 - ESPNU

Chandler (AZ) at Basha (AZ) - 10PM - FSN 




Cowbell Yell...trust us, you want to see this

Fairly large game Thursday night in StarkVegas Starkville as LSU comes to town to play on ESPN.  

The University has cancelled all classes for Thursday in order for the fans to work up an appropriate lather pre-game (and yes in the SEC that means beginning tonight).  The New York Times has an article about the energy that Mullen has brought to town.  Think about that, the New York Times has an article about Mississippi State and Starkville, MS.  

Earlier today we saw a few tweets about former players showing up on campus (Fred Smoot in a white Rolls Royce).  Clearly there's excitement for this game.  

Tonight, Bulldog faithful have turned out in large quantity to participate in the first ever Cowbell Yell (we're pretty sure the gents up in Oxford are having quite a laugh about this right now).  Mississippi State AD Scott Stricklin just tweeted that over 9,000 people have shown up so far for the event.  Impressive for a Wednesday night.

But moments ago our night just got that much better as Brandon Marcello who covers Mississippi State for the Clarion Ledger tweeted out a link to the video below.  Yes, that's head coach Dan Mullen chest bumping Fred Smoot at the Cowbell Yell.  Phenomenal.  Can't wait for the game tomorrow.

 




Video: Sweet new trophy room at Oregon State

Nice inside look at the new trophy room at Oregon State.

At the 20 second mark you get quick glimpse at the players lounge as well.  Looks good. 

 




Dooley: Muschamp's guys haven't shown their stuff

Derek Dooley takes his team to the Swamp this weekend (3:30 CBS game) to play a 2-0 Florida team.  

After practice today, Dooley spoke with reporters (video below).

A couple of quotes from Dooley:

On what it's like to go to the Swamp: "Last year we played Memphis on the road but that's a little different environment than the swamp" - [editor's note> a possible nomination for understatement of the year?]

On all of the different things Florida can do on offense: "Yeah, if you go look at Charlie's history just the first two games of last year's Kansas City Chiefs there were 10,000 different plays"

"We haven't seen hardly anything from them because of the two games they've played.  Same thing on defense.  They played vanilla defense the whole game.  They're not going to do that against us."  

"It's a new staff.  They've played two games where it was over at halftime.  So they haven't shown their stuff."

 

 




Update on Mike Leach

Coach Leach went on a radio show called 3 guys in a garage this morning and went through what has become the standard update...wrote a best selling book, it sets the record straight, Texas Tech is wrong, Craig James hired a PR firm to smear Leach, etc...

But, Leach did offer the following when asked about how bad he wants to get back into coaching, "I'm looking forward to getting back...I mean this has been fun too, I guess the difference would be I have a lot of variety now.  The one thing about football is you have kind of a narrow existence.  And now I get to see and do all kinds of things...I never thought I'd get to do the best selling writer thing, to broadcast TV, to be on the radio, to travel a lot...I've gotten to go on movie sets...all the stuff that you'd kind of like to do, I've gotten to do a lot of it.  But you know, the payoff as far as everybody pulling together and working together and the sense of accomplishment that you get when you win a football game you know I miss that and I don't know that the payoff equals that...I like the intensity, everybody pulling together, that goes with coaching football.

In short, Coach is ready to go..."Yeah, I'm looking forward to getting back."

We're all looking forward to have Coach Leach back on the field.

The full audio (18 minutes) is available at this link.