Leave it to The Ol’ Ball Coach to dig up a years-old “rumor” regarding a rival SEC coach. At a time when the college football news cycle has slowed to a crawl.Speaking on something called the Paul Finebaum Radio Network, and as relayed by Jeremy Fowler‘s Orlando Sentinel blog, Steve Spurrier addressed the longstanding contention that Notre Dame is Florida head coach Urban Meyer‘s dream job.And the South Carolina coach did so without being prompted by the host.”They still got that rumor going down there, Paul, that if he has one more big year, he might be the Notre Dame coach,” Spurrier said at one point during the hour-long interview.Spurrier then compared the situation Meyer may be facing to the one that saw him leave the same institution after a long and successful tenure.”It’d be surprising if he left, but who knows?” Spurrier said. “He’s accomplished so much. I left after 12 years because I just said ‘Hey, I’ve done enough. Try something else.’ He may get to the point where he needs to try something else. Who knows?”Back in December, Meyer gave an interview to Miami radio station WQAM, and strongly hinted that the Irish gig is one that he will always hold in high regard.”Once my kids are done [with high school], maybe some day I’ll go coach there,” Meyer, whose youngest of three children is of middle-school age, told the station. “I don’t know that. That’s way down the road. Being a father and being able to recruit the best athletes in America within a five-hour radius of my home, that’s why I came to Florida. I thought we could have a great chance at success.”To be the head football coach of Notre Dame, you’re on a plane recruiting because you recruit San Diego as hard as you recruit New York as hard as you recruit Florida, Texas, Ohio. It’s a national recruiting base. I recruited there for six years, and I spent every night in a hotel in an airport. I’m going to be a good father first.”A week after that interview, Meyer attempted to quell the growing angst in Gator Nation created by that interview, but seemed to add more fuel than water to the fire.”Our staff has given our life to Florida football for four years,” Meyer said as the Gators prepared for their bowl game. “We plan on giving our life to Florida football for a long, long time. You start hearing, ’Well coach, I thought you said (Notre Dame was) your dream job.’ I grew up in the North and that was my dream job. Probably always will, but that has nothing to do with this.”In 2004, Meyer had the opportunity to take the Notre Dame job, but opted instead to leave Utah for Florida.Now, thanks to a fellow SEC coach, he will — once again — have to address the rumors that he could be leaving as soon as the 2010 season.Gee, do you think that’s exactly what Spurrier had in mind when he brought up this dream job unprompted? Naaahhh, that’s not how the Ol’ Ball Coach rolls.(Insert eye roll here)
Didn’t see that one coming, did you?
Late Monday morning, the SEC unveiled its 2019 all-conference team, as voted upon by the league’s coaches. SEC champion LSU and West runner-up Alabama tied for the most first-team selections with six apiece. SEC East champion Georgia was next up with four, while East runner-up Florida had three.
The Crimson Tide placed 14 players on the first- and second-teams, the most of any single school. The Tigers, LSU, version, were next at 11.
All told, 13 of the 14 schools in the conference placed at least one player on either team. Vanderbilt was the only team without a player selected.
According to the conference’s release, more than a dozen players have now been recognized twice on the All-SEC teams: Raekwon Davis (Alabama), Albert Okwuegbunam (Missouri), Trey Smith (Tennessee), Andrew Thomas (Georgia), Jerry Jeudy (Alabama), Tua Tagovailoa (Alabama), Grant Delpit (LSU), Braden Mann (Texas A&M), Alex Leatherwood (Alabama), D’Andre Swift (Georgia), Lynn Bowden Jr. (Kentucky), Derrick Brown (Auburn), CJ Henderson (Florida) and Rodrigo Blankenship (Georgia).
Kyle Pitts, Florida
Andrew Thomas, Georgia
Jedrick Wills Jr., Alabama
Alex Leatherwood, Alabama
Trey Smith, Tennessee
Lloyd Cushenberry, LSU
Ja'Marr Chase, LSU
Jerry Jeudy, Alabama
Joe Burrow, LSU
Clyde Edwards-Helaire, LSU
D’Andre Swift, Georgia
Lynn Bowden Jr., Kentucky
Derrick Brown, Auburn
Marlon Davidson, Auburn
Jonathan Greenard, Florida
Javon Kinlaw, South Carolina
Anfernee Jennings, Alabama
K’Lavon Chaisson, LSU
Nick Bolton, Missouri
J.R. Reed, Georgia
Grant Delpit, LSU
Xavier McKinney, Alabama
CJ Henderson, Florida
Rodrigo Blankenship, Georgia
Braden Mann, Texas A&M
Jaylen Waddle, Alabama
Albert Okwuegbunam, Missouri
Logan Stenberg, Kentucky
Adrian Magee, LSU
Prince Tega Wanogho, Auburn
Damien Lewis, LSU
Landon Dickerson, Alabama
Tua Tagovailoa, Alabama
Kylin Hill, Mississippi State
Najee Harris, Alabama
Jaylen Waddle, Alabama
Raekwon Davis, Alabama
Benito Jones, Ole Miss
Rashard Lawrence, LSU
Tyler Clark, Georgia
Daniel Bituli, Tennessee
K.J. Britt, Auburn
Terrell Lewis, Alabama
Derek Stingley, LSU
Trevon Diggs, Alabama
Nigel Warrior, Tennessee
Jacoby Stevens, LSU
Brent Cimaglia, Tennessee
Max Duffy, Kentucky
(* – Ties)
Not surprisingly, the man who opened the 2019 season as Memphis’ head coach won’t be there to finish out the year.
Over the weekend, Mike Norvell accepted the job as head football coach at Florida State. Sunday, it was confirmed that Memphis had earned the Group of Five’s New Year’s Six bid and will face Penn State in the Cotton Bowl Dec. 28.
In a statement sent out through the university’s student newspaper, however, Norvell confirmed that he will not be on the sidelines when the Tigers face the Nittany Lions as he turns his full attention to the Seminoles.
It is with tremendous sadness announcing that I have coached my last game leading that great team. With the transition to a new opportunity and a restricted calendar, which is unique to this year, I will not be able to coach the Cotton Bowl. As I have told the team throughout my time, you give everything you have each and every day to the best of your ability focused on your CLIMB, and I could not stand in front of them without being able to prepare to the level they deserve. The team is in great hands with the administration, the coaching staff and the leaders on the team will continue to do what they have been trained to do and RESPOND.
Norvell won’t coach his new team in the Sun Bowl, either, as interim head coach Odell Haggins will guide the team for a fifth-straight game. It was confirmed yesterday that Norvell has decided to retain Haggins as part of his first FSU coaching staff.
As for Norvell’s former team, offensive line coach/running-game coordinator Ryan Silverfield has been named interim head coach. There’s a growing sense that Silverfield could end up being the permanent replacement when it’s all said and done.
Could Oklahoma make it four straight starting quarterbacks who began their collegiate careers somewhere other than Norman?
Dan Wetzel of Yahoo! Sports reported Monday that Utah State quarterback Jordan Love is considering a transfer away from the Aggies, provided he doesn’t make himself available for the 2020 NFL Draft as some expect. If Love, who would be leaving the Mountain West school as a graduate transfer, does decide to remain at the collegiate level, Oklahoma is listed by Wetzel as a potential transfer destination.
Houston and Texas Tech are mentioned as well. The Red Raiders are coached by Matt Wells, who was Love’s head coach the quarterback’s first three seasons at USU.
The 6-4, 225-pound Love passed for more than 3,000 yards each of the past two seasons, throwing 49 touchdowns versus 22 interceptions in that span. He rushed for seven touchdowns a season ago as well, although he was held without one on the ground this season.
Some view Love as a likely first-round draft pick, which will obviously influence his decision. In four career games against Power Five opponents, Love went 83-of-135 for 1,036 yards, four touchdowns and nine interceptions. This season against LSU, he completed half of his 30 pass attempts in a loss to LSU, throwing for just 130 yards and three interceptions.
Oklahoma has started a transfer under center each of the past five seasons — Baker Mayfield (began his career at Texas Tech) in 2015-17, Kyler Murray (Texas A&M) in 2018 and Jalen Hurts (Alabama) in 2019. Mayfield (HERE) and Murray (HERE) both won the Heisman Trophy — and went No. 1 overall in the 2018 and 2019 NFL drafts — and Hurts is a finalist for the award this season.
Yet another Power Five job has officially been filled.
Over the weekend, it was reported that Missouri was zeroing in on Eli Drinkwitz as Barry Odom‘s permanent replacement. Monday morning, the football program formally announced the Appalachian State head coach has taken the same job at Mizzou.
Drinkwitz will sign a six-year contract that averages $4 million annually, although further specifics, including the all-important buyout figures, have yet to be released.
“I can’t wait for every Tiger to meet Eli, he’s a special guy who has a magnetic personality that people will appreciate and enjoy,” athletic director Jim Sterk‘s statement began. “I’m thrilled to have him here at Mizzou leading our program, he’s got passion, a plan and a vision that will take this program to great heights. We went on a search looking for the right coach at a crucial time, and we found him. On behalf of everyone at Mizzou, I’d like to welcome Coach Drinkwitz, his wife Lindsey and their daughters Addison, Emerson, Ella and Parker Lynn to our family!”
The 36-year-old Drinkwitz is in his first season as the head coach of the Mountaineers, his first head-coaching job at any level of football. App State stands at 12-1 on the season after claiming its second-straight Sun Belt Conference championship Saturday with a win over Louisiana.
Prior to App State, Drinkwitz was the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at both NC State (2016-18) and Boise State (2015). He was also the tight ends coach at Boise in 2014 as well.
“I’m excited for the opportunity of a lifetime to be the head football coach at Missouri,” stated Drinkwitz. “This is a special place with special people. I know this is the Show-Me State, and I’m fired up to show this state what our football program is going to be all about. My wife, Lindsey, and our four girls are excited to join the Columbia community and be a part of Mizzou.”