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Major changes to NCAA enforcement policy to take effect next week

The NCAA will vote on a major change in its enforcement policy next week, holding head coaches accountable for rules violations committed by their assistants. The new bylaw is applicable for all Division I sports, but we will, of course, focus on how things will change for football coaching staffs. Read the full NCAA document here.

The NCAA Division I Board of Directors will vote on the proposals this coming Tuesday, and if passed the NCAA's Bylaw will hold head coaches responsible for the actions of all assistant coaches and administrators that report, either directly or indirectly, to the head coach. A head coach will now be held responsible for all Level I and Level II (major violations such as academic fraud or recruiting  inducements) violations.

After August 1, 2013, a head coach may be suspended a full season for Level I violations and a half season for Level II infractions. The NCAA does provide some wiggle room for head coaches. As stated in the legislation, a head coach will be suspended "unless the coach can show that he or she promoted an atmosphere of compliance and monitored his or her staff."

Change doesn't stop there as, effective August 1, 2013, a head coach may be suspended for any Level III violations committed by assistant coaches. The NCAA defines a Level III violation as:

  • In-person, off-campus contacts during a dead period (particularly during the NLI signing dead period.

  • Exceeding the permissible number of contacts with a prospective student-athlete.

  • Intentional or significant game-day simulations and/or impermissible recruiting aids.

  • Providing team gear or other inducements to prospective student-athletes.

  • Violations that occur as a result of engaging nonscholastic third parties in the recruiting process (e.g., prescheduled unofficial visits that are impermissibly funded, etc.).

  • Collective recruiting violations and/or other intentional recruiting violations (e.g., multiple impermissible early phone calls, multiple impermissible contacts, providing inducements).

  • Holding 7-on-7 events on an institution's campus and/or otherwise attending or being involved in nonscholastic events.

  • Impermissible benefits to student-athletes or inducements to prospective student-athletes by third parties that the coaching staff knows about or is involved with.

  • Providing a written offer of athletically related financial aid to a prospective student-athlete prior to August 1 of the prospect's senior year in high school.

The NCAA strongly encourages head coaches to be proactive in looking for possible violations and to communicate their strategy and expectations with both their staffs and their superiors on campus through monitoring and documentation. For example, head coaches are expected to assign a staff member as a liaison to the university's compliance staff, and also assign staff members to monitor specific areas of compliance. 

Credit to USA Today's George Schroeder and Dan Wolken for their report.

Here is ESPN's update on the changes:

Really good Notre Dame video

College GameDay is in Norman this weekend for Notre Dame's match up with the Sooners. Oklahoma is 0-4 all time when hosting the Irish (the last meeting at Memorial Stadium took place in 1966).

Here's a solid video highlighting Notre Dame's fast 7-0 start, including some passionate pre game words from Brian Kelly, and their big goal line stand against Stanford. Pretty well produced.

The opening quarters of each half will be key for the Irish, as Notre Dame has outscored their opponents 84-10 in the first and third quarters.

The game will get started at 8pm ET and can be seen on ABC.


"You can't simulate Oregon's speed"

Tomorrow night, Colorado will face the best offense that they've seen all season when they travel to Oregon to take on the Ducks.

That's not to say that the past few weeks have been easy. In their past three outings, the Colorado defense has faced Arizona State (23rd nationally in total offense), UCLA (top 25 nationally in rushing, passing, and total offense), and a very talented USC offense with Matt Barkley, Robert Woods, and Marqise Lee.

Through the first seven weeks of their schedule, Colorado is giving up nearly 500 yards per contest (112th nationally) and 43 points (119th nationally), and has also allowed 133 plays of over ten yards (119th nationally).

With this week's game coming against one of the highest powered offenses in the country, head coach Jon Embree was asked how they are simulating Oregon's speed.

"You can't. We don't have, we only have a couple fast guys anyway. It's not like we have a plethora of them to put out there to simulate that."

"But the tempo of the offense, I think we've done a good job simulating that." Embree said.

The tempo tomorrow will be unlike anything that Colorado has seen so far this season. The defense has been on the field for an average of 71 plays per game, and Oregon is coming into the game averaging 83 snaps per game, and producing 51 points per game off of those snaps (2nd nationally). And if you've watched Oregon this season, you know any one of those 83 snaps can go for six at any moment.

Kickoff is scheduled for 3pm ET on the Pac 12 Network.



Another interesting HS uniform out of Florida

Word has it that Miami Carol City high school will be getting some new uniforms next season, due to a donation made by a famous musician.

Apparently, the rapper Flo Rida had some new uniforms made up for his alma mater after seeing the interesting neon uniforms that Delray Beach Atlantic high school wore a few weeks ago.

Carol City's new threads can only be described as one of a kind.

The helmets feature a headdress to pay homage to their "chief" mascot, while the numbers are in some sort of cubed pattern. The most interesting part may be their pants, where a chief's head stretches across both pant legs.

Take a look for yourself.

The uniforms should make their debut next season, in honor of the 50th anniversary of the school.


Friday TV - Big East and Mountain West games on tonight

You've got your choice between a Big East and Mountain West match up tonight.

Eastern time listed.


No games


Cincinnati at Louisville - 8 - ESPN

Nevada at Air Force - 8 - CBSSN

High School:

Lake Catholic (OH) at Walsh Jesuit (OH) - 12 - Sportstime Ohio

Greensburg Central Catholic (PA) at Jeannette (PA) - 3:30 - Root Sports Pittsburgh

Plantation (FL) at St. Thomas Aquinas (FL) - 7 - FSN North

Milton (GA) at Walton (GA) - 9 -  ESPNU

Hart (CA) at Valencia (CA) - 10:30 - Fox College Sports Atlantic

Colorado to add "a number of staffers" to help recruiting

Colorado athletic director Mike Bohn said that they plan to hire a number of staffers to aid in recruiting as early as next spring.

The additional personnel, totaling about six people, will not count against the NCAA's limit of coaches allowed to hit the road and recruit. Instead, they will be used to help identify, evaluate, and support prospective student athletes and help them in the transition in Boulder. Basically, they'll be taking care of the behind the scenes stuff, so that the coaches can go out and do what they do...which is recruit.

"It'd be huge. Right now, all the legwork and all that we're doing now takes away from all the other stuff we should be doing from an X and O standpoint, or anything else. Things like transcripts, all that stuff." head coach Jon Embree said.

The importance of recruiting was not lost on Bohn either, who said that he plans to add staffers to all athletic programs, starting off with football.

"The recruiting process is not emphasized or invested in at the level it needs to be. We recognize across the board, with all of our coaches when we meet, that it's about recruiting and about competing in this league of champions."

"We're trying to emphasize what we believe is integral to our success, and it's recruiting. We believe we have outstanding coaches who are recruiting and we want to further bolster their data, their research and their information for them to be better so they can attract (players) to what we believe is the premier college community in the country." Bohn explained.

As the Denver Post points out, the Buffaloes have only eight seniors on their roster, which is tied with Indiana for the second fewest in the country (Rice has just seven). So while coaches out on the road recruiting players that can compete at a Pac 12 level is very important, it is just as important for them to take measures to retain, educate, and develop the student athletes once they get on campus.

Good move here.

Video: Mark Snyder wants takeaways, not turnovers

To Texas A&M defensive coordinator Mark Snyder, and defensive coaches around the country, giving the ball back to your offense is one of the best feelings you can experience on game day.

In the grand scheme of things, it really doesn't matter whether it's a snap that goes over the quarterback's head and is recovered by the defense, or if a ball is ripped from the running back's hands and recovered by your guys. Obviously, both scenarios result in an extra possession for your offense, which is always a good thing.

But to Snyder, there is a distinct difference, and take aways is an area they have to get better in because teams in the SEC don't turn the ball over very often.

"We talk to our guys about taking the football away. If a team isn't going to turn the football over, we've got to take it away. So we talk about takeaways on defense."

"Turnovers are something that the offense gives to you." Snyder notes in the clip.

There you have it defensive coaches. Focus on takeaways, not turnovers.

Heading into this weekend's game with Auburn, the Aggies are coming off back to back weeks (against  Louisiana Tech and LSU) that the defense has failed to come up with a turnover (or takeaway for that matter). They currently rank 103rd nationally in turnover margin (-1), and have only gained 7 turnovers on the year (110th nationally).

Snyder says that needs to change in the coming weeks with road games against quality opponents like Mississippi State (7-0, 3-0) and Alabama (7-0, 4-0) in the next few weeks.

Brian Kelly on Oklahoma: "We want that consistency"

You may or may not be aware that Notre Dame will visit Oklahoma on Saturday night. It's the first time since 1966 that the Fighting Irish have traveled to Norman, and it's kind of a big deal. College GameDay will broadcast from the OU campus Saturday morning, and Brent Musburger and Kirk Herbstreit will call the game to a national, primetime audience  later that evening. The Oklahoman has called this game the second most anticipated Sooners home game in the Bob Stoops era

Beyond the noise, Notre Dame wants Saturday's game to turn into a symbolic passing of the torch. Oklahoma has won one national championship under Stoops and has played for three more. Meanwhile, Notre Dame is looking to go 8-0 for the first time since 2002. A win on Saturday night would likely throw Notre Dame into the thick of the national title chase deep into November for the first time since 1993. The Irish's next three opponents (Pittsburgh, Boston College and Wake Forest) are a combined 8-12 before a trip to USC on Thanksgiving weekend to close the regular season.

But Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly doesn't just want to occupy Oklahoma's usual perch among the nation's elite for this season. Kelly wants his program to emulate OU's dedade-plus run of success well beyond this fall.

“We want that consistency,” Kelly told the Oklahoman. “Year in and year out, you know Oklahoma is going to be part of the conversation. And that's where we want to get our football program.

“We're nowhere near that yet. We think we're moving in the right direction; we're trending the right way. But I think the hallmark of great programs is that consistency, the consistency that we saw here for a number of years that we haven't seen; we want to be able to bring that back.

“That takes time, and that takes a lot of winning," Kelly continued. "And that's why there's so much pride and tradition in their program as well.”

Indeed, Oklahoma has been a model of consistency during Stoops' tenure. Seven conference championships. Eight BCS bowl apperances. Ten seasons of double-digit wins. 

To his credit, Kelly does have Notre Dame's needle pointed in the right direction. After posting back-to-back 8-5 marks in his first two seasons at the helm for Notre Dame, Kelly has the Fighting Irish primed to boost its win total in year three, just like he did in previous stops at Central Michigan and Cincinnati. After winning 10 games in his first two years at Central Michigan, Kelly led the Chippewas to a 9-4 mark in Year 3. Likewise at Cincinnati, 10-3 and 11-3 records were bettered in Year 3 as the Bearcats finished the regular season 12-0. Success at Cincinnati ultimately led Kelly to Notre Dame.

Kelly's message to his program can be summed up as: "If you want to join 'em, beat 'em."