No TV Tuesday
No action until Thursday (when we will have both a Big East and NFL game).
All times are eastern.
Lane at his finest
The entire video below is good; but the last minute (with Kiffin in the locker room post game) is vintage.
By the way, who decided these white unis for UCLA were a good idea?
5 Finalists for the Broyles Award
Finalists were just announced for the Broyles Award.
Pretty solid group.
John Chavis - LSU
Paul Chryst - Wisconsin
Greg Mattison - Michigan
Garrick McGee - Arkansas
Sal Sunseri - Alabama
Yesterday the new athletic director at Illinois (Mike Thomas who came over from Cincinnati a few months ago), announced that Ron Zook would not return as head coach.
Just a couple of quick thoughts on this job. First, Illinois has the assets and the support within the university to win. The University has consistently invested in facilities (new weight room, good enough indoor practice facility, etc...). They have all of the standard amenities one would expect at a Big Ten program.
No doubt that the next head coach will need to have great recruiting capabilities in order to win consistently; but that shouldn't be a problem at Illinois.
In short, this should be considered a great job and we have no doubt (see our incoming texts) that a there will be significant interest in the job.
In his presser yesterday, athletic director Mike Thomas said he largely would lead the search and that he didn't anticipate relying on an outside firm. Thomas stated at the presser that he plans to use the Greg Byrne approach (i.e. "you won't hear from me again about this search until I announce the new coach").
It's early; but names being talked about by guys we believe are informed include Brent Venables, Butch Jones, Mark Stoops, Paul Chryst and plenty of others. We'll keep you posted.
In Tommy West's last season at Memphis, the Tigers went just 2-10. Larry Porter was brought in to improve the talent level starting with the local athletes. Porter was credited with bringing in some talent; however two seasons later, Larry Porter was released Sunday after winning just 3 games in 2 seasons.
Porter inherited a difficult situation without much depth or talent. In both of his seasons, Porter started true freshman quarterbacks.
The Memphis job is currently a difficult one. Tennessee historically has dominated the state in terms of recruiting. Vanderbilt is clearly on the rise. Ole Miss, just an hour away, will soon have a new coach, who undoubtedly will recruit the Memphis area hard. Even Arkansas State is now taking some players from the city. We understand the athletic director plans to step down within the year as well. At a school who's basketball team has done quite well, the commitment to the football program has not been so clear. Local financial support (i.e. Fedex) isn't as strong as it could be and is something the new staff and administration will need to shore up.
Couple all of that with the fact that inner-city Memphis is seeing increases in crime and poverty as well as education issues and this won't be an easy place to win.
Attendance was very, very low this season and it's going to take some new found excitement to begin to fill the Liberty Bowl again. Hate to use the term; but this really sounds like a rebuilding job.
Monday night football...the dome's going to be loud.
All times are eastern.
NY Giants at New Orleans - 8:30 - ESPN
Video: Zook's statement
Always a very difficult day for any coach. Ron Zook handled it with class.
In making the announcement, Illinois' AD was extremely complimentary of Zook as a person (called him an A+ person) and a leader (just felt the football team needed someone new at the helm).
46 teams still have games to play
A lot of coaching moves today and there will be plenty more this week...and 46 teams still have games to play.
Here's a look at what's left to go.
Thursday December 1, 2011
West Virginia at South Florida - 8pm - ESPN
Friday December 2, 2011
MAC championship game: Ohio vs. Northern Illinois - 7pm - ESPN2
Pac-12 championship game: UCLA vs. Oregon - 8pm - Fox
Saturday December 3, 2011
Syracuse at Pittsburgh - 12 - ESPN2
Conference USA title game: Southern Miss at Houston - 12 - ABC
Connecticut at Cincinnati - 12 - ESPN
Iowa State at Kansas State - 12:30
Wyoming at Colorado State - 2
UNLV at TCU - 2:30 - Versus
Utah State at New Mexico State - 3:30
Texas at Baylor - 3:30 - ABC
LA - Monroe at Florida Atlantic - 4
SEC Championship game: Georgia at LSU - 4 - CBS
Middle Tennessee at North Texas - 4
Idaho at Nevada - 4:05
Troy at Arkansas State - 4:30
New Mexico at Boise State - 6
BYU at Hawaii - 7:30 - ESPN2
Fresno State at San Diego State - 8
Oklahoma at Oklahoma State - 8 - ABC
ACC Championship game: Virginia Tech vs. Clemson - 8 - ESPN
Big Ten Championship game: Wisconsin vs. Michigan State - 8:17 - FOX
Saturday December 10, 2011
Army at Navy - 2:30 - CBS