Only one 5-star played in the Super Bowl?
Head coaches, in general, mock recruiting rankings. Every coach has their own story of a 2-star recruit that is now making plays in the NFL.
South Florida head coach Skip Holtz dropped an interesting stat during an interview with ESPN’s Brian Bennett.
Holtz said, “They told me a stat that there was one five-star player in the Super Bowl. I would much rather value my assistant coaches' decisions and working with the high school coach and evaluating film, academics and the quality of people than I would just chasing stars on a recruiting board.”
Of course, we’re not sure Rivals or Scout existed when Hines Ward was coming out of high school.
Holtz continued his point, however, by adding, “I think if you want to evaluate a recruiting class, you evaluate them three or four years down the road, when you find out who is even going to make it to that college or university because of the academics and then how they're going to develop and how they'll mature. That's why the NFL isn't predicated on just four- or five-star athletes.”
“I ask the question, who's the big-time guy? And who's making the evaluation on how many stars there are next to a young man's name? I keep using Chris Johnson, who was a two-star athlete out of Orlando who's one of the best players in the NFL today. You look at Nate Allen who was a safety here who went to the NFL and was up for rookie of the year on defense -- he was a two-star athlete when he signed here. When we went back and looked up the people who signed four years ago with Nate Allen, right below his name was a four-star player that I've never even heard of.”
According to Rivals, Tennessee Titans running back Chris Johnson has offers only from UCONN and Eastern Kentucky before opting to sign with East Carolina.
UPDATE: Thanks to an email from an observer of the site, we have uncovered some hardcore details.
There were three 5-star players based on Scout.com ranking that were on the rosters of Pittsburgh and Green Bay. Rashard Mendenhall, Desmond Bishop, and LaMarr Woodley were all 5-star players. Of the 48 players on the rosters that are young enough to have received a ranking from Scout.com , 15 of those players were highly ranked 4-star players.
Head coach sends strong & clear point to the media
Like most college football head coaches, Syracuse head basketball coach Jim Boeheim wants the media to keep things in perspective.
Following a win over West Virginia on Monday night that snapped a two-game losing streak, Boeheim ripped the media. Syracuse is 21-6 and 8-6 in the Big East, but the Orange haven't lived up to the preseason media hype. Boeheim didn’t lose his cool too badly, but made a very clear point to the media during his presser.
Some coaches try to ignore the media. Some coaches say they don't read the papers. Boeheim admits he reads and listens to the media, and he takes things personal. In fact, he takes things very personal.
Boeheim explained, “I will say that Larry Bird was a pretty great player. One season he averaged 30 points and 15 rebounds a game. But he had like 10 bad games and had like 8 points and shot something like 20% in those games. My point is that you can’t judge people, players, coaches on a little segment like this. If you start judging people on a little segment, then I think you are on very poor journalistic grounds because I think there are some coaches out there that will be in the Hall of Fame that I will beat 80% of the time.”
“I coached against Rick Pitino when he was at Providence five times and once when he was at Kentucky and we were 6-0 against him. One of his teams went to the Final 4 and we beat them 3 times. So now, we’re (media) all of a sudden going to put in the paper that I lost 6 straight to Rick Pitino. Why don’t we put that we beat him 6 straight? Go ahead. That’s really good. Why don’t you keep doing that? When people write and say things about me, it’s always personal. It always will be.”
Asked by the media if he’s been treated unfairly, Boeheim said, “I don’t think it’s ever fair to take a snap shot. I don’t think that’s how you judge people, coaches, or players. But that’s how it’s done around here.”
“Geez, I’m ten months older than when I won Coach of the Year in the country. I must have really got him by something in the last 10 months, huh?”
Towards the end, Boeheim turned to asking a few questions.
Boeheim: “Let me ask you something. Is John Beilein (Michigan head coach and former West Virginia head coach) a pretty good coach?”
Reporter: “I don’t know.”
Boeheim: “John (another reporter), do you know?”
Reporter: “I don’t think.”
Boeheim: “You don’t think (as in disbelief sarcastically). You’re right.”
Grad assistants earning their opportunity to coach
It looks as though not as many grad assistants will move up to full-time positions this off-season as last year. According to our research, 24 grad assistants landed full-time D1 coaching positions last off-season. Less than 15 have made the jump this year, so far.
Here's a rundown of the grad assistants that have landed full-time D1 jobs this off-season:
Randy Edsall hired LSU offensive quality control John Dunn as tight ends coach. Dunn was on the LSU staff with new Maryland offensive coordinator Gary Crowton.
Troy head coach Larry Blakeney hired Texas Tech grad assistant Sean Reagan to coach the quarterbacks.
Bill Cubit hired North Carolina offensive grad assistant Josh Gattis to coach the wide receivers at Western Michigan.
Kent State head coach Darrell Hazell hired Northwestern special teams quality control Jafar Williams as running backs coach.
Dan Mullen and Larry Fedora each promoted grad assistants to serve as wide receiver coaches. At Southern Miss, Fedora promoted Walt Bell to wide receivers coach. Mullen promoted Angelo Mirando to wide receivers coach.
Derek Dooley promoted defensive grad assistant Peter Sirmon to linebackers coach.
At Utah State, Gary Anderson promoted defensive grad assistant Frank Maile to defensive line coach.
I’ll bring you with me:
UL-Lafayette head coach Mark Hudspeth brought Marquase Lovings from Mississippi State to UL-Lafayette, where he will coach the running backs. Lovings served as the defensive grad assistant for the Bulldogs last season.
Steve Addazio hired his grad assistant at Florida, Justin Frye, to coach the offensive line at Temple. Frye actually went briefly to North Texas with Dan McCarney, but then decided to join the Temple staff under Addazio.
Darrell Hazell hired Ohio State defensive quality control Marcus Freeman as linebackers coach.
Don Treadwell brought Michigan State grad assistant Zak Willis with him to Miami (OH). Willis will serve as the special teams coach / recruiting coordinator. Michigan State intern Nick Siatris also followed Treadwell to Miami (OH). He will serve as the defensive tackles coach.
Dan McCarney hired Florida grad assistant Anthony Weaver as linebackers coach at North Texas.
Here is the complete list of coaches that went from a grad assistant position to full-time D1 coach last year:
James Bettcher - Ball State (Defensive ends)
Marty Spieler - Buffalo (Tight ends / assistant special teams coordinator)
Mike Daniels - Buffalo (Running backs)
Kort Shankweiler - Central Michigan (Running backs)
Jared Allen - Florida Atlantic (Wide receivers)
Lamar Owens - Georgia Tech (A backs)
Kliff Kingsbury – Houston (Co-offensive coordinator / quarterbacks)
Ryan Solesky – Louisville (DFO)
JaJuan Seider - Marshall (Running backs)
Zach Smith - Marshall (Wide receivers)
Sedrick Irvin - Memphis (Running backs)
Adam Braithwaite - Michigan ( Safeties)
Napolean Sykes - Navy (Safeties)
Brian Haines - Ohio (Tight ends)
Scott Turner - Pitt (Wide receivers)
Bryant Young - San Jose State (Defensive line)
Charles Clark - San Jose State (Defensive backs)
Louis Ayeni - Toledo (Running backs)
Sonny Cumbie - Texas Tech (Inside receivers)
Clark Lea - UCLA (Linebackers)
Jovan Bouknight - Utah State (Wide receivers)
Robert Rodriguez - UTEP (Linebackers)
Terry Obee - Western Kentucky (Wide receivers)
Quick Hits: Dabo, Kevin Wilson, Todd Monken, Addazio
Dabo is hyping Clemson’s brutal 2011 schedule: “This is certainly the most challenging schedule since I have been at Clemson, including my time as an assistant.”
“I don’t know how many teams nationally have three straight games against FBS teams that won at least 10 games the previous year. All Clemson fans will be excited to have the defending national champions come to Death Valley.”
“Florida State and Virginia Tech back-to-back is a tall order to open the conference schedule. We are going to have improve on the road over last year. The five teams we play away from home won 44 combined games last year. Those will all be difficult places to play with sold out crowds.”
Kevin Wilson explains how he plans to install an offense at Indiana: “I’m a no-huddle offensive guy, so I move fast. But I’ve never had a playbook where I said we have to run these plays. Who’s your quarterback? What can he do? What’s your offensive line? What can they block? These are the things you have to look at.”
“You have to run the ball. You have to be physical. You have to take care of the ball. We’ll try to be wide open. But, offensively, you have to work toward your strengths. We’re not coming in and saying, ‘This is the system.’”
Oklahoma State offensive coordinator / quarterback coach Todd Monken says he doesn’t know what the offense will look like: “To be honest….that is an interesting question because I really don't know.”
“If Dirk Koetter would've left the Jaguars and I would've become the coordinator there. I would've run what they'd run.”
“I don't know how we don't. With those guys already knowing it, it just doesn't make any sense (to change) when you only have three weeks (during spring football). You'd waste the whole spring.”
“With that being said, I'm not Dana and I can't go out and teach it that way.”
Quoting Temple head coach Steve Addazio: "I love challenges, I can't wait. Listen, this program was in limbo and while in limbo, it hit rock bottom. Now we're going to put a bubble on the field, we have all kinds of things going on here for a high school football player to look at us. They'll be involved in a program that's going up. It's Division I football, and it's tough. We want to be a program that continues to win, and want our kids to be around winning in a city that embraces sports. You can't beat that."
“We want to keep Philly kids in Philly, without a doubt. Not everyone can go to Penn State. But, you have to be smart. Like any sales, you target any opportunity and the people that you think you have a chance you can get. I don't want to spin my wheels against kids who don't have a chance of coming here. That's what we have to do, target accurately.”
Mike Gundy rockin Bieber's "Baby" as his ringtone
As you probably saw on Quick Hits earlier today, Justin Bieber’s iPhone ringtone is set to Mike Gundy’s “I’m a man. I’m 40” speech. For those of you coaches that aren't familiar with Bieber, he's the 16 year-old Canadian POP-R&B artist that has stormed the music industry.
Today, during a press conference to introduce three new assistant coaches, Mike Gundy returned the favor. In the middle of the presser, Gundy’s cell phone went off to the ringtone of Bieber’s “Baby ft. Ludacris.”
Gundy went on to say he’d like Bieber to buy a suite and perform a concert in Boone Pickens Stadium. Here's the short clip of Gundy style humor:
Urban Meyer talks about a complete turn of integrity in college coaching
Now that Urban Meyer is not a current coach, he won’t hesitate to speak his mind. Meyer admitted on Friday during an interview with 1070 The Fan in Indianapolis, that being able to speak his mind is part of the reason he walked away from coaching.
Meyer explained, “What I’ve seen the last five years is a complete turn in the integrity of the college coaching profession. It’s completely turned the other way. Right now, it’s not good because the risk-reward is ‘have at it, do what you’ve got to do get the great player, go win games and at the end of the day we’ll find out what happens down the road."
“You tell me how a young man who is a wide receiver (Dez Bryant – Oklahoma State) and he lied to the NCAA and they took away his eligibility and he was never allowed to play again. And then there’s violations in other areas of the country and that doesn’t happen.”
Thanks to SportsbyBrooks, you can listen to the interview.
Quick Hits: Muschamp, Joe Rob, Jim Reid, and Bieber's ringtone
Will Muschamp explains he’s not a CEO: "As a leader or in a leadership role, you have to be yourself. I'm not a CEO. That's not my M.O. I'm going to be involved with the players. I've always envisioned myself in that (head coaching) chair, but when you get in it, it's different. Still, I enjoy scheming. I like drawing up Xs and Os. As a head coach, you can get pulled away from that job. That's not going to happen."
LSU special teams coordinator Joe Robinson thinks it critical for a punter to be the holder on field goals: "The reason I have fought for the punter - not just at LSU but over time - is that they spend two or three hours together every day with the kickers," Robinson said. "The chemistry is there. When you have quarterbacks, you're lucky to get a few minutes a day with them. They're too busy."
"Josh Jasper broke the school record for (field goal) accuracy. He had his punter holding for him every day for two years. I don't think that's accidental. When a kicker has a guy with him all day, every day, holding hundreds and hundreds of balls, that's going to make a difference."
Virginia defensive coordinator Jim Reid talks about pass rushers: “In the two years I was with the Dolphins, we looked at tape after tape after tape (for a great pass rusher to draft), and if you’re a dynamic pass rusher and you’re a first-round draft choice, you’ll never have to work again the rest of your life except at the game of football. They come in different shapes and sizes. Da-Da (Virginia signee) isn’t 6-5, 275, but has quickness and speed.”
Your boy Justin Bieber has Mike Gundy's "I'm a man. I'm 40" speech as his iPhone ringtone. Watch as Beiber explains why.
Syracuse DC Scott Shafer explains coaching moves
Syracuse head coach Doug Marrone has shifted around his defensive coaching personnel in hopes of expediting the process of development of a core group of young players on defense.
The moves start up front where defensive line coach Jimmy Brumbaugh will now coach only the defensive tackles. Central Michigan defensive line coach Tim Daoust has been hired to coach the defensive ends.
Defensive coordinator Scott Shafer will now direct the defensive backs, while John Anselmo moves to outside linebackers. Dan Conley will remain with the linebackers, focusing on the inside players.
Shafer explained the personnel moves to Syracuse.com by saying, “It kind of goes back, for me, to when I was at Stanford (defensive coordinator in 2007). This is how we did it. And we got more productivity because we had more coaching going on.”
“We've got to shore it up, up front. Because you win and lose up front. We definitely have a big task on our hands, because we have a bunch of new faces and jerseys out there that people aren't going to recognize.”
“When you have more guys at the interchangeable positions, then you get a little more technique-specific coaching, which is why I was looking at sliding the people around the way we have.”
“At the first level (line of scrimmage) with looking at where we are, losing a bunch of D-tackles this past year, now we say to ourselves, 'How can we bring the young kids along best.' And that's when we decided it might be smart to go to the system of having two defensive line coaches.”
The 2011 Syracuse non-conference schedule includes at USC, Toledo, at Tulane, Rhode Island, and Wake Forest.