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Dan Hawkins visited 9 colleges this spring, reflects back on Colorado

Former Colorado head coach Dan Hawkins visited 9 different college programs during spring practice.  He will soon head to Stockholm, Sweden for a month to watch his son Cody play in a semi-pro league and oddly enough, will begin working on a Ph.D in psychology.

Hawkins told Rivals’ writer Tom Dienhart, "I have been working these Nike combines. I have been to a lot of spring practices -- Oregon, Oregon State, BYU, TCU, Missouri, Air Force, Colorado State, Colorado School of Mines and Rutgers.”

Reflecting back on his tenure at Colorado, Hawkins offers no excuses.

He said, “When you are the head guy, it's no excuses. You either get it done or you don't. All the other particulars don't matter. I grew a lot and learned a lot. The interesting thing is I'm probably a way better coach now. I probably know more and am more organized and more convinced about what should be done now more than ever. But when you get fired for not winning enough games, sometimes people think you don't know anything.”

"I had a discussion with Pete Carroll about this. After he went through the New York Jet deal and the New England Patriot deal and got hired at USC, I think he was more convinced than ever about what needed to happen. But sometimes in our society, we don't view failure as that type of a learning operation."

Colorado is a difficult job.  Plenty of coaches that we have talked with believe Hawkins is capable of leading another program.  From 2001-2005, Hawkins was 53-11 as the head coach at Boise State.  The Broncos were 37-3 against conference opponents.  

We hope to see Hawkins back on the sideline in another year.

Dan McCarney creating sense of urgency as new stadium nears completion

North Texas head coach Dan McCarney believes that opening the season against a conference opponent (FIU) will create a sense of urgency during summer workouts.

Following the season-opener, North Texas will play Houston, at Alabama, Indiana, and at Tulsa.

It seems as if McCarney has created a sense of urgency since his introductory press conference on November 30, 2010.

The Mean Green is set to open their brand new stadium against Houston.

McCarney told the Denton Record-Chronicle, “We know what they can do and what they can’t do and what needs to be done. That wasn’t some fabricated statement. I believe if we are going to be competitive we have to make the most physical improvement of anyone we play.”

“It’s not just guys in the trenches, it’s offensive skill guys, special teams guys, running backs and wide receivers. We all know it’s a year-round program of development now and we have some major strides we need to make in the months ahead.”

Edsall laying the law, building a foundation at Maryland

Randy Edsall is making academics a priority for the Maryland Terps.  It’s all part of Edsall’s plan to lay a strong foundation for his new program.

Senior wide receiver Quinton McCree told the Washington Times, “The day he walked in and gave a speech, I knew he was about business. I knew ‘That’s it.’ It’s like when I went to Hargrave Military Academy. It was no playing around. It was straight academics.”

Edsall said, “If we don’t teach them that, then were not doing what were supposed to. If we do those things, the results out on the field, that’ll happen. I’m confident that’s going to happen. If you don’t lay the foundation right from the get go, it’s not going to happen.”

We were surprised to hear offensive coordinator Gary Crowton has implemented certain parts of Oregon’s offensive scheme.  The Baltimore Sun has reported the Terps spent time watching Oregon film this spring and will utilize some of the up-tempo style that has become the staple of the Ducks' offense.

Edsall's first game as the Maryland head coach will be against Miami (FL).  Out of the gates, the Terps host Miami (FL), West Virginia, and Temple.

Here are some highlights of the Maryland spring game:


8 colleges had at least 6 players drafted, none played in a BCS bowl

North Carolina and USC led the way with nine players selected in the NFL draft.

Miami (FL) had eight players selected, while Nebraska had seven.  Clemson, Georgia, Iowa, and LSU each had six players drafted.

Rivals writer Mike Huguenin uncovered one of the most interesting facts regarding this year’s draft.

Huguenin pointed out that none of those eight programs played in a BCS bowl game, and Clemson and Georgia even finished with losing records.

Miami (FL) was taken to the woodshed by Notre Dame in the Sun Bowl.  Nebraska lost in miserable fashion to Washington in the Holiday Bowl.

Oregon, who played in the BCS National Championship game, had just one player drafted.  LB Casey Matthews went in the fourth round to the Philadelphia Eagles.

TCU had 5, Ohio State had 5, Auburn had 4, Stanford had 4, Oklahoma had 4, UCONN had 3, and Arkansas had 3 players drafted.

9 UNC players were drafted including DT Marvin Austin, LB Bruce Carter, WR Greg Little, LB Quan Sturdivant, DB Da’Norris Searcy, RB Johnny White, QB TJ Yates, DE Robert Quinn, and TE Ryan Taylor.

9 USC players were drafted including RB Allen Bradford, FB Stanley Havili, WR Ronald Johnson, DB Shareece Wright, TE Cameron Jordan, OL Tyron Smith, DL Jurrell Casey, WR David Ausberry, and OLB Malcolm Smith.

Both UNC and USC finished 8-5.  

Check out Huguenin’s article to see the 13 players that declared early for the draft, but never heard their names called.

Tom O'Brien makes interesting decision, cuts loose Russell Wilson

In a surprising development, NC State head coach Tom O’Brien has given a scholarship release to quarterback Russell Wilson, the runner-up ACC Player of the Year.

Wilson, who is playing baseball in the Colorado Rockies organization, did not participate in spring practice.  O’Brien recently made the decision that Mike Glennon will be the starting quarterback, even if Wilson had returned to the team.

Wilson told the Charlotte Observer, "I really want the fans, N.C. State alumni and most of all my teammates to know if I had been given an equal opportunity to compete for the starting job, I would not have asked for my release. I am a competitor."

In a Friday night press release, O’Brien said, “Russell and I have had very open conversations about his responsibilities respective to baseball and football. While I am certainly respectful of Russell’s dedication to baseball these last several years, within those discussions I also communicated to him the importance of his time commitment to NC State Football.”

“My staff and I thank him for his contributions as a member of Wolfpack football and to this University and wish him only the best in the future.”

Wilson is not allowed to transfer to another ACC school or opponent on the NC State 2011 schedule.


Sark: My wife wants me to decide, so she doesn't have to keep asking

Third-year head coach Steve Sarkisian wrapped up spring practice this weekend at Washington without naming a starting quarterback.

Redshirt freshman Nick Montana and redshirt sophomore Keith Price both performed well and protected the football during the last fifteen practices.

It appears Sark will make a decision in the next few weeks.  He wants the starting quarterback to “fit the personality” of the team and offense.

Sarkisian said, “My wife wants me to decide, so she doesn’t have to keep asking about it.”

“It’s a great battle. I’ve been able to watch these guys continually compete – not necessarily with one another, but with themselves. Not just their own playing at the moment, but some of the adversity that can come with it."

“Maybe they struggle for a day, and the other guy has a good day. Maybe they have a couple of drops. Maybe it’s the weather. But they both improved to a high level. To think we have a redshirt freshman and a redshirt sophomore competing for this job and play the way they are is pretty encouraging.”

Overall, Sarkisian was really pleased how the Huskies improved as a “team.”  The Huskies named team captains earlier than usual in order to help bring the team together during summer voluntary workouts.

UW will open with Eastern Washington.  A week later the Huskies will host Hawaii, then travel to Nebraska.

Richt tested by frustrated Georgia fan, snaps back

A frustrated Georgia fan tested Mark Richt last night in front of 250 people during the Macon Bulldog Club.

Upset with the running game and play-calling, some clown wanted answers.

Richt wasn’t in the mood and responded, “I’ll tell you this, and you’re certainly close to an expert in football, I’m sure you are.”

“I see your frustration, I understand your frustration. I wasn’t born yesterday, I’ve coached football for 25 years, so I know what the hell I’m doing, OK?”

Lightening the mood, Richt then joked, “Excuse me for saying ‘h-e-double heck,’ I know there’s a media member here. Can you just say that I know what the heck I’m doing? Just so my Sunday school class doesn’t give me grief?”

According to Michael Lough, Richt later explained, “The bottom line is we don’t have a tailback right now who deserves to start, in my opinion. We don’t have a guy that’s proven that he can do all the things we’re going to ask that guy to do. There’s nobody that will stand up and say, ‘This is my job, I’m taking it and I’m keeping it.’ ”

After the speaking engagement, Richt met the clown outside in the parking lot and proceeded to apply a vicious anaconda choke hold on the man. **

The Dogs opens with Boise State in the Georgia Dome.  One week laster, the Bulldogs will host South Carolina.

** We are just kidding about the choke hold.

Monte Kiffin: Gruden will be back on sidelines soon

Monte Kiffin says Jon Gruden will be back on the sidelines in the near future.

Kiffin, who served as Gruden’s defensive coordinator at Tampa Bay, spoke about Gruden on the Petros & Money Show.

He said, “He’s kind of a natural.  He was always that way, great with the team. He loves talking ball.  He’s loves talking ball, talking quarterbacks and all those things, analyzing the draft.”

“All of those owners are watching real close.  And he’s probably going to get some offers in another year or so.  And I think he has a son that’s a junior and maybe he wants to see him finish high school, but I think he’ll be back in it before too long.”

Kiffin also praised Tyron Smith, who was the highest drafted offensive lineman from USC since Tony Boselli.

“When he went to the combine, he knocked their socks off.  Just when he went through the tests and stuff.  Here’s the thing, he loves football.  He doesn’t like it, he loves it.  You gotta love it.  He loves it and that’s what Lane told everybody.”

Kiffin, interestingly said that he stays at the Radisson on-campus a lot of nights during the season, but makes the traffic filled drive home on most nights during this time of year.

The Trojans begin the 2011 season by hosting Minnesota.