From "physically inferior and mentally scarred" to a bowl game
Just three years ago, the Washington Huskies were 0-12.
Enter Steve Sarkisian and the Huskies have gone 5-7 and 6-6, while accepting a bid this year to the Holiday Bowl.
Washington AD Scott Woodward told the Seattle Times, "In my opinion, what was done last season (2009) was incredible. Our team was not only physically inferior to the teams that they played in that season, they were mentally scarred from losing. And they (coaches) had to change a whole mind-set.”
Woodward, a former assistant AD at LSU, admits his goal was to make a “Nick Saban type of hire” by bringing in Steve Sarkisian. Two years later, Woodward couldn’t be happier.
"We're here to win the game. We're here to get better as a program, but I also want this to be a celebration," Woodward said. "I want the kids who have been through the depths of misery to really experience some sunshine in a metaphorical and a literal way. I just want them to experience joy and a real celebration, because it's been a rough road for the seniors.
"I'm not afraid to say that we are striving to win championships. And I think Steve's the right guy to do so. But I'm not as optimistic as Steve on the quick turnaround.”
UW will play Nebraska on December 30th in the Holiday Bowl.
Wisky OC Paul Chryst responds to Texas speculation
Various websites (not FootballScoop) have connected Wisconsin offensive coordinator / quarterbacks coach Paul Chryst to the opening on Mack Brown’s staff at Texas.
According to Chryst, that’s news to him.
Chryst said today, “I'm pretty lucky. Wisconsin isn't unique to this, but the players are fun to be around. We're not always having laughs and giggles, but I appreciate [them] a ton. They work, they want to be good. They're willing to do what you ask.”
"I work with a group of guys on the offensive side of the ball that I truly enjoy being around and are really good football coaches. I appreciate what Bret [Bielema] has done and allowed us to do."
Chryst was 1 of 4 finalists for the FootballScoop Offensive Coordinator of the Year award. The Badgers are in Los Angeles preparing for the Rose Bowl game against TCU.
Wisky is a 3-point dog to the Frogs.
Clemson coaches freezing their ass off in Charlotte
Clemson and South Florida are set to kick-off at 12 pm EST on Friday in the Meineke Car Care Bowl in Charlotte.
Unfortunately, the Tigers were greeted by frigid temperatures and brutal field conditions during the first practice in Charlotte.
On Monday, Clemson enjoyed the luxury of practicing on ice. Luckily, today’s temperature in Charlotte rises to 30 degrees, but as we noticed on Weather.com , it feels like 26.
Clemson long-snapper Matt Skinner explains, “The problem is most of the time when you practice on a field, you would like to practice on grass, but when you have this stuff called compact ice, you slip on it. It hurts.”
“I’m cold, but it doesn’t matter. You gotta do what you gotta do.”
Here’s the video of practice #1 in Charlotte:
Quick Hits: Tubs, Riley, Walker, and Coker
Tuberville wants to get back to running the football: "I like what we're doing. I couldn't have come in here and just been a running team with the type of personnel that was already here.”
"But I still believe in running the football. More than what they did in the past. That's the biggest difference. We want to be a bit more physical and be able to run the ball, which will help throwing it down the field, too."
"The problem in doing this offense is it takes awhile to recruit to it. It's a process. A lot of people don't want to take that time and sacrifice to work in an offense like this."
East Carolina offensive coordinator Lincoln Riley reflects back on this week – one year ago at Texas Tech: "It was just a circus after that (Leach leaving). Just about the worst week you can imagine. It was hell."
Dwayne Walker sends a clear message: “I'm a head coach now. Despite the struggles and challenges we've had here the last two years, that doesn't mean it's not going to work out. I can't control the rumors. It's like putting a movie together. You have to put the pieces together before it's complete."
"I think some of this stuff is worth fighting for, but I don't want people to think it's all on resources. At the end of the day, (the coaches) have got to figure it out. It's not a pity party."
Larry Coker describes year #1 at UT-San Antonio: "It has been tough. You practice all week just like if you were preparing for a game. Then you get to Saturday and there is no game. But it has been fun. We've found some players and it has been interesting to say the least."
Syracuse AD Daryl Gross (a former USC assistant AD) describes difference in West Coast recruiting vs. East Coast recruiting: "On the West Coast, frankly, recruiting is sometimes more about, 'Who's the last person you talked to?' Here you have to be familiar, you need credibility, you have to develop the relationships, you have to be respected. People here appreciate that. It's more about building trust over time."
Mario Cristobal celebrates bowl win with "I Hear A Symphony"
In his fourth year at FIU, Mario Cristobal led his team to a Sun Belt championship and Little Caesar’s Bowl victory.
Just as he envisioned his first bowl win as a head coach, Christobal celebrated the thrilling 34-32 victory with “I Hear A Symphony” by The Supremes blaring in the background.
Listen to the music in Motown as Cristobal meets with ESPN’s Quint Kessenich. Cristobal says, “The bottom line is the players, these coaches…they’ve had to overcome more adversity than anyone in the country over the last 4 years. No weight room, no place to train. They become conference champions and tonight they become Little Caesar’s Bowl champions.”
Sweet music selection from the Ford Field audio intern! Not one FIU player had ever hear of "I Hear A Symphony," which was a smash hit in 1966.
"The U" lands in El Paso without camouflage fatigues
24 years ago, the Hurricanes arrived in Phoenix, Arizona wearing camouflage fatigues. In preparation for a national title game against Penn State, the Canes rocked a swag line none other in college football. In fact, they scared little kids.
Today, the scene was a little different when the Canes arrive in El Paso, Texas.
From inside the Hurricanes’ plane, we got to see the arrival of “The U.” Intern #3 here at FootballScoop Headquarters particularly liked the “Rock That Body” music.
For your Monday morning entertainment, we’re posting the Hurricanes' arrival video in El Paso. For the record, the bottom video of the Hurricanes arriving in Phoenix is probably a bit more entertaining, but you don’t get the “Rock That Body” music.
Quick Hits: Tubs, Pelini, Mullen, Rich Rod, Dooley
Tuberville's statement regarding James Willis: “I wish James the best of luck, but it is important for (the) football team to keep pressing forward. We have a great defensive staff here that will carry the load along with my assistance as we prepare for Northwestern.”
Bo Pelini visited the San Diego Zoo on Sunday, will visit Sea World on Monday: "I'll do it all. I was at those places (last year). I'm going again. It's fun. It's a good experience. They're big places. There's a lot to do. You get to do things you didn't get to do last year."
During his own career, Dan Mullen has always studied Rich Rod’s offense: "I would watch every West Virginia game on tape, and I've done the same thing with Michigan. Rich does a fantastic job of getting the ball in the hands of his playmakers, which is the great thing about the spread. ... It allows you the flexibility to find different ways to get the ball to those playmakers in the open field."
Rich Rod says, “There are no patents on schemes” : "It's like if you've seen one West Coast offense, you've pretty much seen them all.There are no patents on schemes. We probably watch each other on film a little more than we let on and have snuck ideas from each other."
Derek Dooley compares college athletes from then and now: “When we were in college it was football, school, and girls, and, ‘Where are you going tonight?’ Those were the challenging issues at hand. These guys, there’s a lot more stuff flying.”
James Franklin says, "I can guarantee you that we will have a quarterback here." :
Mark Richt blames himself for poor pre-season decision
Georgia finished 6-6 this season, but Mark Richt blamed himself for the 1-4 start. Richt says his decision to eliminate tackling to the ground during the three August scrimmages, ended up really costing his team.
Richt said,"I started the season in camp probably not doing enough live scrimmaging and tackling to the ground. Ever since I've been coaching, that's all I've been around. But we've had a couple of years in a row. We had one season, we started the season we had 32 guys injured before the year even got started. And so I'm like, `Alright, this year, I'm going to do what some other teams do.”
“We were still going to scrimmage, you know have three big scrimmages, but we were going to try to go full speed but not go to the ground or not block below the waist to try to beat everybody to the gate."
"I definitely take the blame for the start because I didn't do a good job of getting them ready. I think it did make a difference and we did start to play pretty darn good after that. And I think has a lot to do with things turning around."
After ramping up a mid-season Monday practice, the Bulldogs began playing more like Richt had hoped. The Dawgs won 5 of 7 games down the stretch to become bowl eligible.
Georgia will play UCF in the Liberty Bowl on December 31st.