Reggie Bush apologizes to USC AD Haden for 'a series of mistakes'

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In the two months since the NCAA levied quasi-historic sanctions on the USC football program, numerous byproducts of Reggie Bush‘s willingness to accept cash and prizes while a Trojan have caused monumental upheaval at Heritage Hall.

Several players, including one high-profile recruit, have fled the program, ostensibly in search of more playing time.  The long-time athletic director was nudged into “retirement”.  And, in a mostly symbolic gesture, the university shipped its copy of Bush’s 2005 Heisman back to the New York City trust charged with awarding it.

One thing that hasn’t happened, though, is perhaps the one thing that Trojan Nation would like most — a public apology from the man responsible for the mess.  Or, at the very least, taking ownership of the actions that led directly to the program he’s proclaimed he will defend until the day he diesmaybe — having to dig out of a sanction-laden hole.

The closest that’s come to happening was in late July, when Bush offered some meaningless, self-serving drivel offered up solely, it seemed, to make himself feel better in an uncomfortable situation.

“The whole situation is terrible and nobody feels worse about it than I do.”

Finally, however, Bush seems to be claiming ownership of the mess he created.

According to USA Today, Bush and new athletic director Pat Haden spoke recently, and the New Orleans Saints running back (gasp!) admitted wrongdoing and apologized for the things he’s wrought on his alma mater.

“He’s really contrite,” Haden says of Bush. “He knows he made a series of mistakes. It wasn’t just one mistake. It was a series of mistakes.

“He told me, ‘If I could turn the clock back, I would. If I could give the Heisman Trophy back, I would.”

One, it’s very easy to give that stiff-armed trophy back, Reggie.  It’s spelled “U-P-S”.  Google it.

Two, good for Reggie.  While it may not be the public one that’s necessary to allow him to completely move on from this and totally repair his image, the private mea culpa is a step in the right direction.

Now, take that final step and publicly admit the mistakes you’ve already admitted to privately and apologize to your fans and to the supporters of the college football program you claim to hold near and dear to your heart.

A whole helluva lot more people will respect that stance than currently do the “See No Evil, Hear No Evil, Speak No Evil” platform you’re presently standing on.

Vols ‘very confident there was no inappropriate conduct’ between Butch Jones, player

KNOXVILLE, TN - OCTOBER 11:  Head coach Butch Jones of the Tennessee Volunteers watches the action during a game against the Chattanooga Mocs at Neyland Stadium on October 11, 2014 in Knoxville, Tennessee.  (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
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In the midst of reports that he had a physical altercation with one of his Tennessee players during summer camp this year, Butch Jones labeled the speculation “absolutely ridiculous.”

Apparently, his bosses agree with the head coach.

At a board meeting Thursday, UT-Knoxville chancellor Jimmy Cheek stated that he and athletic director Dave Hart had done their “due diligence” in investigating the accusations that Jones and senior offensive lineman Mack Crowder were involved in some type of physical skirmish during practice this past August.  The end result of interviews with Jones, coaches and players was the conclusion that there was nothing to the reports and message-board rumors.

“There’s been a lot of rumor and misinformation on social media and message boards about an alleged incident during football practice,” Cheek said according to‘s Wes Rucker. “It’s not our practice to respond to rumors, but I thought it was important to let you know that we’ve done our due diligence and Dave Hart and I are very confident there was no inappropriate conduct with any players or coaches.”

Shortly after Cheek spoke at the board meeting, Crowder took to Twitter with a series of missives that speaks around the issue.

Michigan’s keeping ‘fingers crossed’ for leading rusher’s availability

De'Veon Smith
Associated Press
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Michigan played without its leading rusher in Week 5.  The Wolverines are hoping there won’t be a repeat in Week 6.

De'Veon Smith sustained a lower-leg injury in the Week 4 win over BYU and didn’t travel with the team for last Saturday’s win over Maryland.  Smith has been practicing with his teammates throughout the first few days of this week, and head coach Jim Harbaugh is guardedly optimistic that the running back will be available for what’s turned into a huge Big Ten matchup with Northwestern Saturday in the Big House.

“He’s practicing and I’m keeping my fingers crossed that he’s going to stay good and be ready to play,” Harbaugh said during a radio appearance Thursday morning. “But we’ll (keep) looking at that every day.”

Despite essentially missing a game and a half, Smith currently leads the Wolverines with 331 rushing yards and four rushing touchdowns. He’s added four receptions for 35 yards and a touchdown coming out of the backfield the first four games.

Should Smith be unable to go again, the Wolverines have three other backs with at least 100 yards on the ground: Ty Isaac (187, 7.2 yards per carry), Drake Johnson (125, 4.2 ypc) and Derrick Green (100, 3.3 ypc).

In addition to Smith, Harbaugh is hopeful Channing Stribling will be available this weekend as well.  The starting cornerback didn’t play against the Cougars because of injury