CFT: Recruit creates stir with fake visit to Notre Dame
2014 recruit creates stir with fake visit to Notre Dame
Based on the twists and turns the Manti Te’o saga has taken over the past week, of course someone did that.
Sunday, 2014 recruit and Georgia verbal commitment Stanley Williams spoke glowingly to 247Sports.com‘s Notre Dame website regarding a visit he had taken to the school over the weekend.
“The visit went great,” Williams said. “It was great to experience something new and different, and we had a great time at the game. I had been looking forward to it for a while, and it was great to just get out there and see a new place. I plan on getting up there a couple more times in the future.”
Williams added that while he was interested in the Irish prior to the visit, “[a]fter taking the visit there, they are definitely high up there on my list and a factor in my recruitment.
The only problem? Williams never actually visited the school.
In a note posted this afternoon atop the original story, the site wrote “BlueandGold.com has now learned [Williams] never made it to South Bend for the visit.” Why Williams, who is one of the top players in the state of Georgia, would make up a story about visiting Notre Dame is not known.
It’s not like the player needs the attention; he already holds offers from, among others, Auburn, Clemson, Florida State, Georgia, Georgia Tech, LSU, Mississippi State, Oregon, South Carolina and Tennessee. 247Sports.com rates him as the No. 4 all-purpose back in the country in the Class of 2014, while Rivals.com has him listed as a four-star recruit.
What the recruiting trail repercussions will be for Williams is unclear. Jason Sapp, editor of Blue & Gold Illustrated, likely summed up the short-term damage as it pertains to the Irish with an open-ended tweet posted on his Twitter account.
“If a recruit is looking for a quick way to drop off of a program’s big board…”
(Tip O’ the Cap: SBNation.com)
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Hired a little over a year ago in the wake of the worst scandal in the history of collegiate sports, David Joyner will remain on the job at Penn State for the foreseeable future.
In a press release, Penn State announced that David Joyner will remain on as athletic director through the end of president Rodney Erickson‘s term. Erickson’s term comes to an end in June of 2014, at which point a national search for a successor will be launched.
“I have confidence in Dr. Joyner and want him to continue as part of my leadership team while I am president,” said Erickson in a statement.
Joyner was named acting athletic director in November of 2011 as the replacement for Tim Curley, who was hit with perjury and failure to report charges relating to the Jerry Sandusky child-sex abuse case.
Heading the search for a replacement for Joe Paterno, Joyner played a significant role in the hiring of Bill O’Brien last January. In 2012, amidst all of the distraction related to the scandal and subsequent sanctions, O’Brien led the Nittany Lions to an eight-win season, taking home multiple coaching awards at season’s end.
When (if?) Miami and Oregon appears before the NCAA at some point this year, there’ll be some new faces on the committee charged with hearing their response to allegations of improprieties in their respective football programs.
While most of the attention on this past weekend’s NCAA Board of Directors meeting was focused on new — and relaxed — recruiting rules, eight individuals were also added to the Committee on Infractions. Included in that group is former Michigan head coach Lloyd Carr.
Carr spent the last 28 years of his collegiate coaching career with the Wolverines, the last 13 as head coach. He left following the 2007 season as the third-winningest coach in school history, his 122 wins trailing only Bo Schembechler (194) and Fielding Yost (165).
From 2000 through 2005, Carr, a 2011 inductee into the College Football Hall of Fame, served on the NCAA Football Rules Committee. In the midst of the Jim Tressel/Ohio State scandal in May of 2011, Carr took the NCAA’s enforcement arm to task.
“I know it’s a difficult time because the issues are serious, but it’ll be up to the NCAA to find out what did and did not happen,” Carr was quoted as saying. “And they need to do a better job in my judgment.
“If you’re going to have a system that the public, the fans, respect and buy into, you better have a way of making sure those people who are violating the rules don’t prosper. You’ve got to invest the money to have investigators and whatever else you need.”
Also appointed to the committee, which will now consist of 18 members, was outgoing Georgia president Michael Adams.
Below are the other new members of the infractions committee:
– Norman Bay, director of enforcement, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) (and former University of New Mexico law faculty).
– Carol Cartwright, former president of Bowling Green and Kent State.
– Bobby Cremins, former Georgia Tech men’s basketball head coach.
– Thomas Hill, senior vice president of student affairs at Iowa State.
– Joel Maturi, former Minnesota athletic director.
– Sanker Suryanarayan, university counsel, Princeton University.
Since taking over for Doug Marrone earlier this month, new Syracuse head coach Scott Shafer has watched four assistants follow their boss to the NFL.
Shafer over the weekend lost yet another assistant, albeit for an entirely different reason.
The Orange announced Sunday that linebackers coach Steve Morrison has decided to leave the football program for what was described as personal reasons. In the same release, however, the team announced that Clark Lea has been hired to replace Morrison.
“Clark Lea has comes highly recommended by many well-respected college coaches,” Shafer said. “Coach Lea has worked closely with Coach Bullough in the past, which will help make a smooth transition on the defensive side of the ball. I am looking forward to having one of the best and brightest defensive coaches in the country join the Syracuse football staff.”
Lea spent last season coaching LBs at Bowling Green and has also coached at UCLA. Lea’s defensive boss with the Bruins was Chuck Bullough, who was hired last week as the Orange’s defensive coordinator.
In addition to Bullough and Lea, Shafer has hired George McDonald as his offensive coordinator and Tim Lester as quarterbacks coach. Two members of Marrone’s former staff — wide receivers coach Rob Moore and defensive line coach Tim Daoust – were retained by Shafer as well.
At one point a verbal commitment to Clemson, Robert Nkemdiche is no longer thanks in large part to his mother.
With National Signing Day just over two weeks away, the consensus No. 1 recruit in the Class of 2013 has apparently whittled his list of schools down to three. And, not so unexpectedly, all three are members of the conference that has won the last seven BCS championships.
Following an official visit to Gainesville over the weekend, Nkemdiche told ESPN Recruiting Nation that Florida, LSU and Ole Miss, in no particular order, are in the mix
“No school has been kicked down or anything, but I just have to see the other schools and compare them,” Nkemdiche told the website. “Florida, Ole Miss and LSU are battling for that top spot.”
Prior to Nkemdiche’s visit to the Gators, the website reports, the Rebels and Tigers had been in a two-way battle for the defensive end, with the former holding a slight edge. Nkemdiche’s brother plays for Ole Miss, and his mother has been quoted as saying she either wants the two to play together in Oxford or she wants her younger child to go to Alabama. At least for now, the latter doesn’t appear to be the case.
Nkemdiche is expected to announce his decision on signing day Feb. 6, although it would be far from surprising if his recruitment went beyond the first Tuesday of next month.
(Tip O’ the Cap: MrSEC.com)
Almost exactly a month ago to the day, Auburn announced that long-time Georgia assistant Rodney Garner was leaving the Bulldogs for a job on Gus Malzahn‘s first Tigers coaching staff.
Reportedly, Florida’s set to do the same to another SEC football program as well.
While neither school involved has officially announced the move, multiple media outlets are reporting that the Gators have hired Brad Lawing as their new defensive line coach. Lawing would replace Dan Quinn, UF’s defensive coordinator who left last week for the same job with the Seattle Seahawks.
Quinn had also served as the Gators’ DL coach.
Lawing has spent 17 of the past 24 seasons as a Gamecocks assistant. His first stint lasted 10 seasons (1989-98); his second has lasted seven years, returning to Columbia in 2006 during Steve Spurrier‘s second season as head coach of the Gamecocks.
Lawing also spent four seasons at Michigan State between his USC stints, with his first year with the Spartans coming in Nick Saban‘s final year before leaving for LSU.
(Photo credit: South Carolina athletics)
Oregon did the expected earlier Sunday afternoon and hired offensive coordinator Mark Helfrich to be the Ducks’ new coach. If nothing else, UO kept the hire in-house, something the program has done for decades.
Former Ducks coach and athletic director Mike Bellotti knows a thing or two about that. He joined Rich Brooks‘ staff as an OC in Eugene in 1989 and succeeded Brooks in 1995. So when it was time to name Helfrich as Chip Kelly‘s successor, Bellotti gave his stamp of approval.
“It’s great for everybody and it’s a great opportunity for Mark,” Bellotti said via the Oregonian. “It was important for the continuity of the program. Hopefully they’ll maintain as much of the coaching staff as they can and hopefully salvage the recruiting class.”
Helfrich was going to be named Oregon’s coach had Chip Kelly bolted to the NFL last year as he was expected to do. By all accounts, Helfrich is cut from practically the same cloth as Kelly and promised in Sunday’s presser that just about everything was going to remain the same.
Hopefully for his sake, and Oregon’s, that includes winning an average of 11 games a year.
Win 11 games in your first season and coach a Heisman Trophy winner? Yeah, that’ll result in some more cash for Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin.
The university announced on Saturday that Sumlin will receive an extension and raise pending approval from the board of regents’ meeting on Feb. 1. Additionally, raises appear to be coming for Sumlin’s assistants.
The exact terms of the agreement aren’t known, but Sumlin currently makes $2 million.
As we say in the business, “pay the man.” Sumlin felt like the right hire for the Aggies to begin with, but I’m not sure too many people outside of College Station thought A&M would have the season they did in Year 1 under Sumlin. His case for coach of the year was as good as anybody’s this year.
A&M also currently has the No. 8 recruiting class in the country according to Rivals.com with signing day just a couple of weeks away. If 2012 was any indication, A&M is going to be a real player in the SEC West for as long as Sumlin is there. I can’t imagine Sumlin would leave for another job in the college ranks, but the NFL? It’s a possibility.
But Sumlin’s expected raise and extension is well-earned no matter how you look at it.
Even before Chip Kelly left Oregon to become the new coach of the Philadelphia Eagles, it was reported and widely believed that the Ducks would stay in-house and hire the team’s offensive coordinator, Mark Helfrich, to run the program.
Oregon interviewed five other candidates – it had to — but it would have been considered an upset if anybody but Helfrich was named Kelly’s successor.
But there was no upset on Sunday. As expected, Helfrich was named the new head coach at Oregon. He will have a five-year contract worth $9 million.
“Growing up in Oregon, raised about two hours from here, playing pick-up football in Autzen before there was all this other stuff around Atuzen Stadium and dreaming of someday playing in Autzen Stadium. Luckily, for Duck fans, I was never allowed to play in Autzen Stadium. Coach [Rich] Brooks and Coach [Mike] Bellotti at that time made a very good evaluation. But I had a couple high school games in there and that was the extent of that dream.
“My dad went to school and played here, my uncle played here, my brother, his wife, my mom, so many family and friends that went to school here just make this home. Coaching at Oregon is the pinnacle for me.”
The Ducks have been one of the highest-scoring offenses in college football under Helfrich and Kelly. This past season, Oregon ranked second in points per game 49.6, third in rushing yards with 315.2 and averaged 537 yards per game. Oregon also averaged roughly 81 plays per game this year, with the Ducks running 96 in the season-opener against Arkansas State.
(Hat tip: coachingsearch.com)
Manti Te’o broke his silence on the Lennay Kekua hoax story Friday night in an off-camera interview with ESPN’s Jeremy Schaap. The interview, over two hours long, still provoked many questions about the hoax and Te’o is no better off today in terms of clarifying his own story than he was before the interview.
Maybe Round 2 will work.
The New York Times reports that Te’o will sit down on camera with Katie Couric during her show “Katie” on Thursday to answer questions about the hoax. He’ll be joined by his parents, Brian and Ottilia.
The Times adds that Oprah Winfrey, who recently interviewed Lance Armstrong, also requested to interview Te’o. If anyone’s wondering why Couric was able to grab Te’o on camera, the fact both are represented by CAA might have something to do with it.
(Writer’s note: if you can, we ask that you please control your excitement.)
Now that new Purdue coach Darrell Hazell has inked his six-year, $12 million contract, he’s begun the process of putting together his coaching staff. On Friday Hazell announced the addition of six assistant coaches for the Boilermakers. Those additions are:
Greg Hudson, Defensive Coordinator
Jim Bollman, Offensive Line
Marcus Freeman, Linebackers
Jon Heacock, Cornerbacks
Kevin Sherman, Wide Receivers
Jafar Williams, Running Backs
Hudson joins Hazell’s coaching staff after spending the past three seasons as linebackers coach for Florida State. In 2012, the Seminoles ranked in the top 10 in scoring defense, rush defense and pass defense. Bollman comes from Boston College where he served as the offensive line coach/running game coordinator. He also spent 11 years as the offensive coordinator for Ohio State.
Freeman, Heacock and Williams all come to Purdue after serving under Hazell at Kent State while Sherman comes over from Virginia Tech.
It’s the offseason, so get ready for more of this.
Per the Lawrence Journal-World, Kansas linebacker Ben Heeney was cited for misdemeanor battery after an incident that took place last Sunday outside a local bar. According to the paper, Heeney apparently “battered employees” at the establishment after he was asked to leave. Heeney is scheduled to appear in court on Feb. 8.
“We are fully aware of the situation involving Ben,” Jayhawks coach Charlie Weis said in a statement. “We have discussed this with all of the parties involved and believe we know what truly happened. We are handling it internally with appropriate measures.”
Heeney was an All-Big 12 second-team selection as a sophomore in 2012. He led the team with 112 tackles and also recorded 12 TFL and a sack.
As expected, Moseley will stay enrolled at Auburn and work to finish his degree. Once he’s graduated, Moseley can transfer to another FBS program without having to sit out a year to satisfy NCAA requirements.
AuburnSports.com reported earlier this month that Moseley met with new AU offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee to discuss his future with the program. After that meeting is when the quarterback reportedly made the decision.
The soon-to-be fifth-year senior started eight games over the past two seasons. He’s also served as a backup twice, once to Barrett Trotter in ’11 and Kiehl Frazier this past season, but saw time as a starter midway through those years.
Moseley finishes his time at Auburn with 1,183 yards passing with as many touchdowns as interceptions (six).
(Hat tip: AP)
A little less than a month after being named Wisconsin’s new head coach, Gary Andersen has a new contract. Provided he signs it, that is.
The University of Wisconsin Board of Regents approved three contracts on Friday for Andersen, new offensive coordinator Andy Ludwig and defensive coordinator Dave Aranda. Specifically, Andersen will make $10 million over five years. That salary breaks down into $1.8 million initially made up of a base salary of $400,000 with annual raises of $100,000.
Ludwig and Aranda have two-year deals worth $480,000 annually with base salaries at $300,000. Per the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, that represents a significant increase from what former Badger coordinators Matt Canada and Chris Ash were paid ($265,000) in 2012. One of Bret Bielema‘s concerns before taking the Arkansas job was the compensation his assistants received.
It appears Wisconsin has addressed that concern, at least to start, with Andersen and his two coordinators.
The NCAA has been planning to slim/modify its rulebook for the better part of two years. Frankly, it seemed like it was never going to happen.
But on Saturday, the Association adopted a whopping 25 proposals with the intention of shifting its focus to better supporting student-athletes and modifying recruiting rules that are more enforceable.
You can check out the release from the NCAA HERE.
One of the big changes is that athletes will be able to receive “$300 more than actual and necessary expenses, provided the expenses come from an otherwise permissible source.” The debate on paying athletes more than the value of an athletic scholarship has been picking up interest over the past couple of years. The idea of compensating athletes at “market value” is unrealistic, but this is a step in the right direction for anyone who favors extra money for athletes.
Additionally, both student-athletes and recruits will be allowed to receive “actual and necessary expenses for training, coaching, health insurance and the like from a governmental entity.” Athletes and recruits can also receive “actual and necessary expenses” for athletes representing an institution during practices/competition as well as noncompetitive events.
Certain recruiting restrictions have also been eased or lifted altogether. For one, the NCAA will eliminate restrictions on methods and modes of communicating with prospects during the recruiting process. In other words, text messaging, instant messaging, social media messaging — these will all be permissible and unlimited so long as the communication is private.
So, yes, butt dialing is no longer considered an NCAA issue. However, exactly when a coach can begin
butt dialing contacting a recruit is still up for vote.
Speaking of coaches, the NCAA lifted restrictions on which staff members contact recruits. This will no longer be limited to a head coach and assistants. The only restriction is that non-coaching staff members cannot recruit off-campus. However, the NCAA did remove the limits on the number of coaches who can recruit off-campus at any one time. That was the so-called “baton rule.”
All 25 proposals go into effect on Aug. 1 of this year.
There’s more to be done and the USA Today has a good look into what lies ahead for the NCAA Rules Working Group. But this is a start. Loosening some of the recruiting restrictions that were simply outdated and more trouble than they were worth was a necessity.
Another college coach has been plucked by the NFL. This time, it’s Miami offensive coordinator Jedd Fisch.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported Saturday morning that Fisch will become the OC for the Jacksonville Jaguars. A spokesperson confirmed the news to the Miami Herald and South Florida Sun-Sentinel confirmed Schefter’s report as well.
Fisch has prior experience in the NFL. He came to Miami in 2011 after a brief stint with the Seattle Seahawks. He’s also coached with the Denver Broncos, Baltimore Ravens and Houston Texans.
The Miami Hurricanes averaged 31.4 points per game in 2012, but were streaky on offense. Still quarterback Stephen Morris threw for over 3,000 yards and freshman running back Duke Johnson rushed for nearly 1,000 and was one of the most explosive players in the country.
Fisch will become the second departure from Al Golden‘s staff. Wide receivers coach George McDonald joined Brett Bielema‘s staff at Arkansas, but left to become the OC at Syracuse about a month later.
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