Memphis: New meeting room and locker room
A couple pictures of Memphis' new football facilities are making their way around Twitter and the web.
The meeting room looks impressive, and as if Coach Fuente's enthusiasm isn't contagious enough, those piercing Tiger eyes will make it impossible to doze off during team meetings.
"Coaches don't have a rewind button"
We are all well aware of the highs and lows of the coaching profession. Work hard and land a great job, stay for a few years and continue to work your tail off only to be with another program in a few seasons, sometimes by choice, and other times due to circumstances beyond your control. That's life in the coaching world.
Back in 2002 Craig Bohl was let go as the defensive coordinator at Nebraska under Frank Solich. Shortly thereafter in 2003, he was named head coach at North Dakota State and has since led the program from a D-II school to an FCS powerhouse, including a 14-1 record and National title in 2011. The Bison have also racked up wins over both Minnesota and Kansas in the past two seasons.
In the FCS National title game this past year, Bohl took a page out of his mentor Tom Osborne's book and called a fake punt that went for 27 yards and a critical first down. That's just part of his competitive makeup as a coach.
“Coaches are competitive. Our environment is not static. There are certain times you have to take risks.”
On the very next play, they built off of that momentum and took a screen pass 39 yards for a touchdown and ended up national champs, winning 17-6.
As Sam McKewon of the World-Herald notes in his article on Bohl, "coaches don't have a rewind button", and Bohl rarely looks back on the turbulent times. “This game is humbling, not every day is going to be a Chamber of Commerce day.” he says.
When Bohl needs to reflect he simply swivels his chair around to take a look at a sign in his office.
“I have a sign in my office that says ‘Just coach the team'. Whenever I get in that mind-set, I turn around, look at that sign and say to myself, ‘Just coach the team.' That's what I'm doing.”
Virginia Tech's camo uniforms
Add Virginia Tech to the list of schools that will be participating in the Wounded Warrior project.
The helmet will be full camo, and a sneak peak of the white jersey's feature camo numbers. The Hokies will wear the uniform when they travel to Bowling Green on September 22 to honor Military Appreciation Day.
As we have seen the past couple years, Under Armour selects a few schools every season to feature the Wounded Warrior uniforms in order to help raise awareness and provide services and programs for injured service members and their families. Other schools that have worn the Wounded Warrior gear include Utah, Maryland and Texas Tech.
Jimbo Fisher: Invest in recruiting
USA Today came out with an interesting article over the weekend detailing Florida State's recruiting expenses, which have eclipsed the $500,000 mark since Jimbo Fisher has taken the reigns.
According to the article, during Bobby Bowden's final season the Seminoles spent an estimated $280,000 on recruiting. In Fisher's first year as head coach that number rose to $500,000 and increased again to $525,000 for 2011-2012. To help put that in perspective, the entire athletic department at Florida State spent $1.6 million on recruiting for 2011-2012.
Noting that most recruits won't even consider schools that don't offer them by their Junior year, Fisher admits that the evaluation process had to be accelerated when he was hired.
"We're on sophomores and freshmen now. If you haven't offered them yet...you're done. You aren't even getting in the hunt."
"If you wait like in the old days and only travel at the end, you won't have anybody to sign. There are no players left. Now, it's the early bird gets the worm. It's all about a relationship. Recruiting is all about relationships. And relationships don't just come, 'Hey, c'mon, I've got a great school.' No, they take time."
With the changes in recruiting over the past few years, Fisher and his staff focused on closing the gap on the programs that had made headway on the recruiting trail.
"The landscape of recruiting in general has changed. Recruiting used to be a segmented time of year. Now? It's 365 days a year. Recruiting never, ever, ever stops now. That's the nature of our business."
"With our classes, for the money, we're probably the best bang for your buck in the country. I don't understand people who think you're gonna make money on a company and you don't invest in it. The investment is recruiting. If we get the right players and we win games, the school makes more money, we make more money, the community makes more money, and we're all happy. Recruiting is the lifeline".
GA of the Day - Will Peagler a.k.a. "Outback" (Univ. of Louisiana Lafayette)
If you've been in the coaching profession for a while, you might have heard the legend of "Outback" at Clemson. For those who haven't, here's your chance to meet a legend...Will Peagler, also known as Outback.
In all seriousness, Coach Peagler is one of those guys you love to be around. Smart young man who has a bright future.
Watch the video and you'll see an engaging, sharp young coach who has learned a lot from some excellent coaches along the way. Towards the end of the interview you'll hear him speak about competing to be the best possible coach in the country. Love the passion!
Golfing with Bill O'Brien
Bill O'Brien took part in Penn State's Coaches vs. Cancer golf outing earlier this month with the cameras following him and his group for most of the course to catch all of his interactions with both the legends and fans of Penn State.
The event, which has been hosted by the basketball program since 1996, holds a special place for O'Brien because his mother is a two time breast cancer survivor.
At one point during the video as O'Brien is lining up for a putt, one of the members of his group encourages him with a "C'mon Mike, show 'em how it's done", to which O'Brien could only reply with a polite "Mike?".
Rumor has it that one group in particular had the opportunity to golf with O'Brien, but passed on it to golf with a more seasoned veteran of the outing. However, for the record, their whole group referred to him by his correct name when asked.
Judging from the video, the outing looks like a great time was had by all on the way to raising about $2 million dollars for a great cause.
Les to grads, "Operate with Swagger"
Les Miles was back in Elyria, OH for his 40th high school reunion yesterday and made a surprise appearance at the graduation ceremony for the current Elyria High seniors.
Miles urged the graduates to find their own goals and live life with passion.
Cindy Leise of the Chronicle Telegram has the story; but we couldn't leave you without passing on this Lesism...
Coach Miles told the graduates to "operate with swagger." "Swagger really means style," Miles said. "I've never met an Elyria High graduate who didn't have style."
UM AD Dave Brandon: We didn't want to change
There has been plenty of talk about Oliver Luck being one of the top athletic directors in the country, and understandably so. But the job that Michigan AD Dave Brandon has been doing an should not be overlooked. Brandon has been able to take one of the nations strongest athletic programs from top to bottom and institute changes previously not thought possible.
When Brandon took over as the Michigan AD almost two years ago, he took over a organization that he described as "inward-focused" and has since expanded the staff from 275 members to 308 (including creating many new positions including as chief marketing officer and chief information officer), and put a renewed focus on marketing, event execution, and information technology.
One of the first things that Brandon did upon taking the job was to take a close look into what he was inheriting. One thing that he found out pretty quickly was that the University of Michigan did not welcome change.
"Why? Because we're Michigan. We didn't want to change, we were stuck in, 'This is the way we do things at Michigan.' If we didn't like the way things were going, we would just sing the fight song. If it looked like Texas was growing faster than us, if Ohio State kept beating us, if Florida was zooming past us, we'd just sing the fight song. And the reality is, we just didn't want to change."
Unsurprisingly, each change ranging from putting numbers on the helmets, to the football programs first night game at The Big House was met with resistance.
"Every change I have ever proposed has been met with resistance 'You're going to put lights in Michigan Stadium? You're going to play a night game? You're going to put the kids in a vintage uniform? Oh my God, you're going to put numbers on the helmets? How can you do this?'"
"I don't care what it is, any change that's been proposed, this has been a culture that wants to resist it, because we all want to go back to the way it was when we were there, because that's friendly and that's comfortable.
"Every change I have proposed has been met with resistance. But you know what? I don’t care."