Willie Taggart: You can count on it
Does any head coach in college football rivals Willie Taggart’s optimism?
Heading into his second years as Western Kentucky head coach, Taggart is convinced the Hilltoppers are “going to have a consistently successful, big-time college football program – you can count on it.”
You gotta like that.
So what’s the plan?
Taggart told the American Chronicle, "We're going to get back to a more blue-collar approach in terms of how we work to become better players and coaches. We're not asking for any handouts. We're going into the season with an understanding that we have to work for every ounce of respect and success we achieve.”
"It will mean staying a little longer on the practice field, staying a little longer in the weight room, staying a little longer in the film room and working a little harder while we're doing all that. If we work at it like I expect us to, there's no reason we can't be the best team in our conference -- no reason at all."
Under Taggart, the Hilltoppers have finished with the top ranked recruiting class in the Sun Belt two years in a row. That’s certainly a good place to start.
In 2011, Western Kentucky opens against Kentucky in Nashville, TN. Still haven’t quite figured that one out yet. The next three are at home against Navy, Indiana State, and Arkansas State.
Former Cane shares candid words about Randy Shannon era
Former Miami (FL) defensive back Ryan Hill shared some candid words about the Randy Shannon era with the Miami Herald.
Hill talked mostly about the ridiculous immaturity on the team, a lack of respect of authority, and drugs. He believes that if the program is going to get back near the top of college football, then Al Golden is going to have to implement serious changes.
Hill said, “In my early years at UM, there were guys who were freshmen who acted like adults — Jon Beason, Teraz McCray, Greg Olsen. When I was a senior last year, some sophomores and juniors acted like freshmen. Guys would do silly stuff like pulling their pants down, wearing crazy stuff.” (See photo of Jacory Harris below)
“Guys would come late to meetings. They would schedule appointments and not show up or listen to iPods in class. I was always told by academic advisors to talk to [teammates]. Some kids got worse after they got here. People were purposely doing stuff to mock Randy Shannon or do their own thing.”
In Hill’s eyes, there was a another problem that existed as well.
“Coach Shannon put fear in guys not to do pot during the season. But I know there were a couple guys that beat the system. Nobody got caught. Now coach Golden has a problem on his hands, and he has to figure out how to handle it.
Hill, a defensive back out of Tallahassee, played in 49 career games, starting 18.
Shannon led Miami (FL) to a 28-22 record in his four years as head coach. The Hurricanes were 16-16 in ACC games. After losing to South Florida in the final game of the 2010 season, Shannon was relieved of his duties as head coach.
Colt McCoy's wife randomly calls ESPN radio, disgusted with boosters
Colt McCoy’s wife, Rachel, made a random phone call to ESPN Radio this morning during The Herd with Colin Cowherd.
Rachel McCoy is disgusted at how boosters and educated men try to provide gifts and free dinners to Texas players, specifically Colt.
Rachel McCoy said Colt was regularly offered free dinners, but “people in Texas are just being friendly and they don’t mean anything by it at all.”
Here’s the problem, however.
“You’ve got guys who are grown adult men with law degrees, educated men, you look at it and say what are they going to gain from this. Really, to me, it’s to say I bought ‘so and so’ dinner. Hey, I took ‘so and so’ to do this. These grown men, it’s just their pride.”
“You have to go after these adult men.”
“You cannot expect 19 or 20 year-old kids to say no to free stuff when they are in college. It’s silly. We need to make something more set for these adults to keep them accountable. I just think it’s to be able to tell their buddies, honestly.”
“Most of these boosters, it’s not to make them player better, they are not giving them cars to play better. They’re not going to play better if you give them a car. But they want to be remembered down the line when the make it to the NFL, they think they’ll be remembered as they guy that help me. They’re not going to be remembered because they bought them a car or dinner.”
And let’s be honest, if anyone knows what really goes on, it’s probably the longtime girlfriend of the starting quarterback at the University of Texas.
Schiano: Unanimously, everyone is concerned about the onsides kick
Greg Schiano appeared as a guest on the Scott Van Pelt Show on ESPN Radio this afternoon to talk about his proposal to eliminate kick-offs.
In case you missed Schiano’s proposal, you can read it here.
Today, Schiano further explained, “I worry as much about the onsides kick-off. You’d be hard pressed to find a coach that doesn’t think the onside kick isn’t one of the most dangerous plays in sports. It’s setup for some bad things.”
“I brought it up to my fellow Big East coaches at the Big East meetings. Unanimously, everyone is concerned about the onsides kick. Then I think when you think about the regular kick-off, the size and speed has changed tremendously in the last 20 years. Certainly, the bone structure hasn’t. So something has got to give.”
Schiano talked about the norm these days… a 240-250 linebacker that can really run. After all, it’s still force = mass x acceleration.
“I don’t think the guys are more violent. They are just much better trained and the training starts at such an early age.”
Of course, Schiano’s team is a blue-collar team, so don’t think he’s trying to gain an advantage that would benefit his style of play.
“I think people realize, especially people who know me, you may beat us, but you’re going to leave the game sore and bruised when you play a Rutgers team. That’s not the intent…to the game a soft game.”
To wrap up the interview, Schiano did mention that Eric Legrand is gradually, but slowly improving. His spirit is giving him a chance.
Jerry Kill: Our only goal as a staff is one thing...
Minnesota head coach Jerry Kill, fresh off his #1 ranking from Athlon’s College Football Preview, hit the speaking circuit yesterday in the great state of Minnesota.
Kill told a group of Gopher fans, “The thing that we want from you more than anything is your loyalty, we want your support. It’s going to be tough. It won’t be easy. Some days you’ll say, ‘Boy, I don’t know.’”
“Everywhere I’ve been, when we started, they’ve said ‘Boy, I don’t know.’ You can’t change things over night. You’ve been patient for a long time. I know some of you say, ‘Too damn long.’ I understand that. I wish I had a magical wand or a crystal ball to make it right.”
“Our only goal as a staff is one thing…I want to see you smile and I want you to say ‘Boy, I’m proud of that football team and they reflect the great state of Minnesota.”
“Change is hard.”
“I’ll be honest with you. We have a vision. It’s not going to be easy.”
The Gophers open at Southern Cal. The next three games are in Minnesota against New Mexico State, Miami (OH), and North Dakota State.
Oliver Luck: Would I do it again? I don't know.
West Virginia athletic director Oliver Luck just completed a radio interview with 93.7 The Fan in Pittsburgh.
As you probably know, there have been a number of stories that have surfaced recently regarding Dana Holgorsen and Bill Stewart. We have been hesitant to mention the news because several stories have seemed skepitcal at best. We wanted to hear from the horse's mouth.
Holgorsen and Stewart have yet to speak publicly, but here are the interesting comments from Oliver Luck:
“I’d be the last one to deny that we're in a little bit of a controversy.”
“It’s difficult to know what’s fact and what’s not. I’ve got to have to time to figure that out. I can’t really say much at this point beyond that.”
“We are having a little bit of drama. I think the program is in pretty good shape. We can get this all sorted out.”
“My information has left me with a high level of confidence that there were a number of blatant inaccuracies of these allegations (with Holgrosen).”
“I have a high level of confidence in his (Holgorsen’s) persona and discipline.”
Asked if he would make the coaching in-waiting hire again, Luck said, “I thought it made sense at the time. Dana was given the opportunity to come in and focus on the offense, for Stew to act as the mentor, give him a bit of understanding of the state and the culture of Mountaineer football. So in my mind, I thought in made some sense. In retrospect, we can all second guess. Would I do it again, I don’t know.”
A Rocky Ending: Mike Hamilton to resign today
According to WBIR in Knoxville, athletic director Mike Hamilton will resign today as the athletic director at Tennessee.
Hamilton has been the athletic director at Tennessee since 2003, when he replaced Doug Dickey.
During his tenure, Hamilton hired Bruce Pearl, Lane Kiffin, and Derek Dooley. He also made the decision to ask for the resignation of former head football coach Phil Fulmer.
In 2007, Hamilton dismissed successful baseball coach Rod Delmonico, who led the Vols to two SEC titles and three College World Series appearances. Delmonico was the national coach of the year in 1995.
Most recently, Hamilton dismissed head baseball coach Todd Raleigh.
Oh, let the "Phil Fulmer for AD" rumblings begin.
UPDATE: During his press conference today, Hamilton said, "I think today was inevitable. I need to close this chapter of my life and move ahead."
Mike Leach creates a Top 9 list
Mike Leach seems down on the state of college football at the current moment, so he went to the keyboard on Monday.
Leach, who many believed was portrayed in an unfair manner by the media, used twitter to share his thoughts.
@Coach_Leach wrote, “Football is a world of overreacting to a number of things.”
Here’s the list that followed:
1) Notion that everybody cheats.
2) The main individual at fault is always the HC
4) All athletes are broke.
5) Media's role as arbitrator.
6) Players don't know the difference between right & wrong.
7) The notion Coaches search for ways to cheat.
8) The notion administrators are blind to everything.
9) Notion boosters easily controlled.
Leach is currently living in Key West, Florida (perhaps in the house below). He co-hosts the College Football Playbook on Sirius/XM hosted with Jack Arute. The show airs from 12 - 3 pm EST on channel 91. Tune in, today. Should be a good one.