Archive for June, 2012

Arrests: UGA running back star arrested

Georgia running back star Isaiah Crowell has been arrested, the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer has revealed.

The star Bulldogs running back is in jail facing three weapons charges after Athens police stopping Crowell’s car found a weapon under his seat with an altered serial number. There was also the ‘odor of marijuana’, although no drugs were found.

“Crowell was arrested on charges of carrying a weapon in a school zone, and having an altered ID mark, both felonies”, the paper said.

The arrest will immediately trigger an indefinite suspension from bound-to-be-furious Georgia coach Mark Richt, and it has been speculated that Crowell could be kicked off the team.

He is currently in jail with a $7,500 bail on his head.

 

Recruiting: Vanderbilt lands defensive commitment

Vanderbilt has added defensive end Landon Stokes to its 2013 recruiting class, 24-7sports has reported.

The Orlando Prep star had offers and interest from over 30 schools, including Missouri, the two Mississippi schools, as well as Clemson and West Virginia.

Stokes – Vandy’s 13th overall commitment – is ranked as Rivals’ 31st-best weakside defensive ends in the country and the 96th player in all of Florida.

 

It’s Official: College Football Has Its Play-Off

After 100 years of controversy, College Football at last has its play-offs, starting in 2015, the NCAA has said.

The four-team play-off will start in 2015, and the first ‘Final Four’ will be chosen by Selection Commiteee – and teams will be ranked on Win-Loss record, strength of schedule, head-of-head and then if a team is conference champion, USA Today reporter Nicole Auerbach tweeted. She added that the make-up of the selection committee is still to be decided.

Virginia Tech president Charles Steger told a press conference: “I am delighted to report our endorsement of a four-team seeded play-off”, and added that they will be taking fan suggestions for a new replacement name for the BCS, which has caused so much controversy during its existence.

The first new National Title Game will be on January 12th, 2015. Six BCS Bowls will be used as semi-final places with the Rose, Sugar and Orange Bowls absolute certainties. It was also tweeted by @TheUpset  – quoting ESPN’s Joe Schad – that the remaining BCS Bowls would also be chosen by the Committee, in essence enlarging the Committee’s decision-making agenda. SI’s Andy Staples simply said about the matter: “They don’t know yet”.

Joe Schad reported via Twitter: “Big 12 commish Bob Bowlsby says he sees a 15-member selection committee”.

The play-offs will happen over 12 years, and the most important thing for the conferences – the money – hasn’t been decided on yet. Neither has the TV network that will show the games, although all the major networks are thought to be in the running. SportingNews.com said that it could make the Kings of College Football $5bn.

SEC Commissioner Mike Slive said that an eight or 16-team play-off (which some fans were rooting for) didn’t fit into the academic calendar.

 BOTTOM LINE: It took a while, but we’ve got a play-off! Why couldn’t we start this year? CBS Sports Bryan Fischer noted: “Selection committee will look at W-L first and foremost. If Boise State or any other team goes undefeated, 99.9% chance they’re in playoff.” That’s good news for smaller schools.

 

 

Sumlin suspends two A&M players

Kevin Sumlin, the new Texas A&M coach, has wasted no time as a disciplinarian, suspending two starters for the first game of the season.

Junior linebacker Steven Jenkins and defensive back Howard Matthews  were each given a one game ban for violating team policy.

What they did is not quite clear.

Matthews had 28 tackles and two sacks in his first season for the Aggies, while Jenkins had 61 tackles and 1 sacks in 2011.

One A&M fan tweeted: “Well, that was quick. Two difference makers on the defense out for a game. I would say Sumlin has sent a message.”

BOTTOM LINE: Texas A&M had one of the Big XII’s worst defenses last year (which was saying something) and this news – if only for one game – won’t make their start to life in the SEC any easier. Jenkins is going to be a big miss at linebacker,  where he is expected to start, while Matthews is expected to start at safety.

Recruiting: New WR commits to Mississippi State

Wide receiver Scott Austin has committed to Mississippi State, it has been widely reported.

The 6 ft 4, 180 lbs receiver out of Biloxi was ranked as the 14th best player in the State by Rivals.

“It came to the point where I had a lot of stress on me on where I wanted to go and who really wanted me at heart,” he told the Clarion-Ledger. “MSU has five receivers leaving and this is a good opportunity to probably start as a true freshman.”

He is the third player in the Dan Mullen’s 2013 receiving corps to be over 6 ft 3, the Clarion Ledger noted.

Southern Miss had also recruited Austin.

 

Who’s the best QB in the SEC?

As y’all know by this website, we spend our time being very, very nice about the SEC. But September rolls closer, we’re going to say a few things that you probably won’t like and certainly won’t agree with.

But, as my uncle Hank said to me: “Opinions are like mouthholes. Everyone’s got one” (He may have substituted the word ‘mouth’ for something else, but not on this family website!)”.

So if you really think Quarterback 2 is a better QB than QB 1, then make sure you comment to tell us where we went wrong. You never know, we might listen….

So without further ado…

1) Aaron Murray (Georgia)

It’s a toss-up between Murray and Tyler Wilson of Georgia, but the reason why Murray’s No.1 is quite simply we think he’s going to have a better year. Yes, we realise that Murray, who threw for 3,000 yards and 35 TDs last season is losing Orson Charles, his tremendous tight end, but he keeps Malcolm Mitchell, Tavarres King, Marlon Brown and Michael Bennett at receiver – which will give him a huge amount of depth. Oh, and his running back Isaiah Crowell‘s going to be pretty good (if he stays out of trouble), too. And he’s keeping his staff offensively – which is more than can be said for Wilson and his motorbike-riding ex-coach, too.

2) Tyler Wilson (Arkansas)

Wilson is a brilliant quarterback, and is definitely going to go to the NFL. He’ll have great tailbacks in Knile Davis, Ronnie Wingo, Dennis Johnson to do some damage (expect John L. Smith’s offense to be pretty balanced), and with his arm, he’ll overcome the losses of Jarius Wright, Greg Childs and Joe Adams to turn Cobi Hamilton into a 1,000 yard receiver. Razorbacks fans hope.

3) AJ McCarron (Alabama)

AJ McCarron completes a pretty simple first 1-2-3 after an excellent National Championship Game vaulted him into big-time quarterback reckoning. No, we’re not a big fan of all the trash-talking he’s done with Tyrann Mathieu this off-season (would you guys shut up? Please?), but we ARE big fans of his on-the-field actions. With Trent Richardson gone, there’s going to be more focus on McCarron to perform (although Eddie Lacy is going to be special), and up his stats of 2,634 yards and 16 TDs that he put together in 2011. Kenny Bell (WR) and Michael Williams (TE) are going to be your receivers to watch out for, although with Alabama, anything can happen.

4) Connor Shaw (South Carolina)

Shaw replaced one of the jokes of 2011 in Stephen Garcia (sorry Gamecocks fans, but Garcia was a joke in his time at Williams-Brice) and was fantastic for the ‘Cocks – even though the loss of brilliant RB Marcus Lattimore could have crippled their season. We’ve ranked Shaw pretty highly because we think there’s a ton of good stuff to come – and with Lattimore back to carry some of the offense (and do some blocking) . Not only that, but after Garcia was booted, he went 7-1. And his coach is some guy called Steve Spurrier, who knows a bit about coaching quarterbacks. Ace Sanders and Justice Cunningham are going to have to pick up the load left by Alshon Jeffrey, though.

5)  James Franklin (Missouri)

WARNING: This ranking comes with a massive ‘Asterisk’, bearing in mind that he had shoulder surgery in the off-season.  Without surgery, the ‘Texan Tiger’ (our nickname, no-one elses) had a brilliant Big XII season, throwing for 2,686 yards and 21 touchdowns. Gary Pinkel’s going to give him even more chances to hit his spots in 2012 – particularly with the monster receiving target of Dorial Green-Beckham, who was the country’s No.1 prospect. If Beckham and Franklin both perform – and Columbia’s at its noisy best, SEC defenses should be on their toes.

6) Tyler Bray (Tennessee)

Tyler Bray could well be the man to turn around the Vols’ fortunes after the carnage left by Lane Satan Kiffin (2011 was a recovery year where it was somewhat of a miracle that the Vols finished 6-6 in the regular season). He’s got a great arm, he’s hungry, and he’s mobile -all the things that should have the Vol Navy cheering. A broken thumb put him out for almost half of the season (5 games). If the injury hadn’t happened – and Justin Hunter hadn’t succumbed to season-ending injury against Florida – then the Vols could well have been a real threat in the East. Now, the Vols could well frighten a few people in 2012 – definitely through the air.

7) Jordan Rodgers (Vanderbilt)

Rodgers is the last of the SEC’s proven starters this year, after going the whole season under the huddle (he finished 6-7, with 1,524 yards passing and 9 TDs). We saw a lot of grit from him against Georgia, when his legs – not necessarily his arm – seemed to scare the Dawgs defense and generate nearly 80 yards worth of rushing. His offensive line’s going to have to help more if Rodgers is going to keep down the interceptions mind – he threw more of them than he did touchdowns this year. But if you watch this clip roll against Florida, you’ll realise that he’s going to worry opponents. Can we mention he’s the  younger brother of future Hall of Famer Aaron Rodgers now?

8) Zach Mettenberger (LSU)

People are wondering why we’ve got Rodgers ahead of  Mettenberger and we’ll say this: Rodgers is more of a known quantity. Although Mettenberger clearly got a cannon, he wasn’t too bright in his decisions at Georgia (including a misdemeanor sexual battery charge) and managed to get himself booted out of Athens. One can only hope he’s grown up. But Les Miles needs a quarterback and needs one badly – even with one who’s going to need a lot of reps before the first game of the season- especially if you believe this review. But the 272 yard, 2 TD performance is a good start for the QB who reminds us an awful lot of Arizona State’s Brock Osweiler (that’s a compliment, by the way), and Les Miles will make sure he’s in shape for the big-time.

9) Tyler Russell (Mississippi State)

Russell’s season as a back-up wasn’t particularly quiet – he threw for over 1,084 yards and 8 yards in MSU’s 7-6 season in 2011, and he had 635 yards passing and 5 TDs in 2010, too. Now that Chris Relf has left, Dan Mullen can concentrate his efforts on Russell – and the junior quarterback can sparkle under him. Expect at least 2,000 from Russell this year – particularly as he’s now going to be the go-to man.

10) Jacoby Brissett/ Jeff Driskel (Florida)

Both Brissett and Driskel are going to be chomping at the bit to be the starting quarterback at The Swamp, and both had some experience at QB level – especially with the injury to John Brantley – but not enough to have everybody screaming tears of joy. Some fans feel Brissett should get the nod, citing arm, feet and ‘gunslinger mentality’, while some feel Driskel should get the nod. The ultimate judge will Coach Will Muschamp.

11) Jameill Showers (Texas A&M)

There was a lot of love for Showers after the Maroon & White Game in Aggieland, when he went 20-31 for over 200 yards and two ‘crisply thrown’ touchdowns, according to reports. Showers ran for a touchdown in 2010 against Kansas State, but what’s really going to prove if he’s got it will be in A&M’s first big-time game against the University of Florida, who come and visit Kyle Field on 8th September. Great name, too!

12) Kiehl Frazier/ Clint Moseley (Auburn)

Some people think Frazier will get the job, and others think Moseley will. New Tigers OC Scott Loeffler will let us all know pretty soon now. We think Moseley’s going to provide the arm, but watch out for Frazier on running and trick plays to give a bit of rest for Onterio McCalebb, who’s going to take a hell of a lot of the ball this year – particularly now Michael Dyer’s transferred to Arkansas State.

13) Maxwell Smith (Kentucky)

Smith started Kentucky’s Spring Game had 353 yards passing and two touchdowns, but also gave up two interceptions. Sorry, but he’s going to have to buck up his ideas to get people thinking about Kentucky about something else other than basketball and horse racing. 3-1 Joker Phillips’ is even in a job by the end of the season, by the way.

14) Barry Brunetti/ Bo Wallace (Ole Miss)

Brunetti was brutal last season for the awful Rebels, and unless he’s markedly improved over the last few months, would it be a shock if Wallace – a juco transfer – gets the starting nod? After all, he had the better Spring Game, and he looks more about a future. Heck, even Freeze admitted it, saying: “Just off the top of my head, I thought Bo had the best day. He functioned very well and kept us on schedule for the most part.” Rebels fans can only pray for better than last year.

Demps fails to make US Olympic team

Former Florida star Jeff Demps has failed in his bid to explode into the 2012 Olympics as a 100m star.

Demps, the brilliant return man who had 23 touchdowns in his Gators career, made the final of the 100m US Olympics Trials in Oregon, but only came 7th. This left many people wondering what he’d given up a promising NFL career for.

Demps gave up football to focus on track just a few weeks after Florida’s bowl game with Ohio State. He said: “I can have the mindset of a full-time track guy now.”

It is not known whether Demps will try for a career in the NFL – where someone who has his speed could be the next Devin Hester – or continue his Olympic dream.

 

 

 

War Eagle Damn: Auburn QB arrested

Auburn quarterback Zeke Pike has been arrested for public intoxication, WLTZ has reported.

The quarterback, who is in the running for the Tigers’ starting job, was arrested on Saturday night. His bail was set to $300.

Pike started school at Auburn in January and participated in spring practice.

It is not known what playing time this will cost Pike.

 

Recruiting: Texas A&M grabs new WR commit

Texas A&M continued its recent excellent run of commitments by grabbing former wide receiver commit Kyrion Parker.

The 6 ft 3, nearly-200 lb player  from Texas had previously committed to LSU before de-committing to play for Sumlin instead.

“I just loved the coaching staff there,” Parker reportedly told 247sports.com in an interview. “Coach Sumlin is a great guy. He’s a down-to-earth coach and he’s funny. It was so welcoming there and I just love the program.”

“Plus the way they run their offense, I think my game fits perfectly into that spread. I also really wanted to play in the SEC because that’s where the best competition is and that’s where you’re going to get better at.”

Parker’s reason for de-committing from LSU was simple: home. He told ESPN’s recruiting site on June 15: “I just didn’t know if LSU was the right fit for me. I wanted to stay closer to my family. A lot of people say when you’re in college, you’re going to need someone to fall back on. That’s really it; I wanted to be closer to family.”

Parker had also had an offer from Mississippi State.

Uniwatch: On The New Georgia Helmets

Sorry guys, not a big fan of the new UGA helmets.

Yes, we respect Georgia’s country fanbase, but puhleeze – we much prefer the classic red ones as it has been since time and memorial.

If they ARE going to change it, why don’t they simply change to a black helmet for the ‘black out’ and nothing more, nothing less?

What do you think?

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