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Maryland down 2 grad assistants during August camp

Maryland will be without two of their main horses, both graduate assistant coaches, during the first sixteen practices in August camp.

The university self-imposed the penalty on the program as part of two rules violations that occurred during last season under former head coach Ralph Friedgen.

The Terps were found to have exceeded the 20-hour rule last season.

According to a release this morning, Maryland used an extra 1.25 hours each week on football related activity.  Also, certain quality control coaches attended voluntary summer workouts last season.

Sounds like Maryland was trying to replicate the Michigan strategy.

As a result, the quality control coaches will not be allowed to observe or participate in on-field activities during August camp this year.  

In reality, things just became a little tougher for coordinators Gary Crowton and Todd Bradford.

The Terps open with four consecutive home games beginning with Miami (FL).  After the season opener against the Hurricanes, Maryland hosts West Virginia, Temple, and Towson.

 

ESPN sets killer Thursday night schedule, but here comes the NFL

If you are reading this site, chances are that Thursday nights in the fall mean one thing to you…the start of the college football weekend.  In fact, as of today, only sixty-three days remain until the first Thursday night primetime game of 2011 on ESPN, UNLV at Wisconsin.

Let’s be honest, ESPN could broadcast Bowling Green at Idaho.  You would still watch it.

For years, college football has stolen the spotlight of sports entertainment on Thursday nights in the fall.  However, here comes the NFL, which is proposing a new eight-game early season Thursday night schedule.

According to the LA Times, “The new eight-game package would be for the first half of the season. The NFL's own cable channel, the NFL Network, already has an eight-game schedule for the second half. Besides the NFL Network, other potential bidders include Comcast Corp., which owns the sports channel Versus; Turner Broadcasting, which owns TNT and other channels that could carry games; and News Corp., parent of Fox and the cable channel FX.”

Early season NFL Thursday night games could start as early as the 2012 season.

In the meantime, let’s look forward to the 2011 college Thursday night primetime schedule.  It's a great schedule. 

  September 1- UNLV at Wisconsin 
  September 8- Arizona at Oklahoma State 
  September 15- LSU at Mississippi State 
  September 22- North Carolina State at Cincinnati 
  September 29- South Florida at Pittsburgh 
  October 6- California at Oregon 
  October 13- USC at California 
  October 20- UCLA at Arizona 
  October 27- Virginia at Miami (FL) 
  November 3- Florida State at Boston College 
  November 10- Virginia Tech at Georgia Tech 
  November 17- North Carolina at Virginia Tech 
  November 24- Texas at Texas A&M 7PM (Thanksgiving)
  December 1- West Virginia at South Florida 

 

As only Jon Gruden can...

Seriously, is there anyone out there with the ability to focus on the positives (when there are few, if any to talk about) as Jon Gruden can?

Gruden shared his thoughts about Terrell Pryor on the Scott Van Pelt Show this afternoon on ESPN Radio.

Here are Gruden’s comments:

“You can’t deny the fact that this guy has very rare physical size and strength to play football, whether it be quarterback, receiver, or some creative role at the next level.”

“There is something for Terrell Pryor to do, that’s all I’m saying.”

“He is a premier game day competitor.  I do know this…I’d find something for Terrell Pryor to do.  I don’t know about being a return guy.  I do think if you watch the Fiesta Bowl his freshman year, you see him stand out there at wide receivers against Texas, Beckman throws a fade streak in the end zone, and he jumps up and takes it away like he’s stealing from a child.”

“I’ve seen him stiff are defensive ends.”

Gruden did bring up the fact that NY Jets head coach Rex Ryan effectively utilizes Brad Scott, a former college quarteback at Missouri.

“He could be an outstanding receiver with the size and strength advantage much like Calvin Johnson in Detroit.  There are not many athletes like this that I’ve worked out.  Go on YouTube and watch him on the high school basketball court.  When I stood on the sidelines at the Rose Bowl, I thought he was Julius Peppers.”

“I do think somebody is going to pull the trigger and acquire the rights to someone they can use.”

“I see a big guy that has won a lot of games.  If you ask me, someone is going to find something for Terrell Pryor to do.”

Translation…Gruden wouldn’t touch Pryor as a quarterback.

 

Jon Embree says Colorado players have changed habits

It’s only sixty-six days until Jon Embree will lead the Colorado Buffaloes against Hawaii in his first game as a head coach.

Embree has already declared the opener at Hawaii as a “brick game,” a tradition started by former Colorado head coach Bill McCartney, but discontinued by Dan Hawkins.

A win…and the Buffs will have a new gold brick outside the locker room signifying one of the bigger wins in program history.

Embree said yesterday at the Colorado Football Kickoff Luncheon, “We've accomplished some great things here. We've won a national championship, we've played in some of the biggest games in college football history. They (our players) need to know that, they need to understand what they're a part of."

Despite losing a number of players from the roster in the off-season, Embree is optimistic about 2011 and beyond.

He explained, "Because I know me. I know my coaching staff. I believe in those players . . . that they've made unbelievable changes in their habits off the field, the fact that every guy is there this summer working out. I don't think that guarantees anything, but it gives you a chance."

According to Embree, twenty-four players were under a 2.0 GPA when he inherited the program.  After starting a 6:45 am study table, only two players on the team finished the spring semester below a "C" average.  

That's a start, but the progress the Buffalo supporters want to see is on the field.

Embree and his new coaching staff open at Hawaii, but return to Boulder in week #2 to host Cal.  

Iowa State getting a "big boy" video board

Before the start of the 2011 season, Iowa State will have a brand new, massive video board and speaker system in the North end zone.

The construction is well underway and evident by the video below, this is a “big boy” display that will certainly enhance the fan’s experience at Jack Trice Stadium.

In fact, the entire display weighs 67,050 pounds.  The high-definition screen measures 36 feet high and 79.5 feet wide.  Iowa State contracted with Daktronics for the project.

Iowa State opens the season by hosting Northern Iowa.  A week later, the Cyclones will host in-state rival Iowa.  Texas, Texas A&M, Kansas, and Oklahoma State will all make trips to Ames this season, as well.

Jack Trice Stadium holds a capacity of 55,000.

 

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