Move over Ohio State. Make room Oregon and North Carolina. Y’all could have yourselves some additional company atop the NCAA hot seat in the not-too-distant future.
According t0 the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer, a police investigation into the Columbus (Ga.) Parks and Recreation Department has turned up what could be potential issues for the eligibility of two Georgia student-athletes — one football and one basketball player.
The paper writes that an unauthorized bank account controlled by a pair of top Department officials was used to pay for flights to and from Los Angeles for Jarvis Jones, who was a member of a city-funded, Nike-sponsored AAU basketball team at the time. Jones, expected to start at linebacker this season, began his collegiate career at USC in 2009 before transferring back to his home state last year.
The total cost of the four flights to and from Atlanta/Los Angeles was $828.40, and came after Jones signed with USC in February of 2009.
NCAA rules do not allow amateur sports organizations to provide expenses for athletes in excess of actual and necessary travel, room and board, apparel and equipment for competition and practice.
A Columbus PD official told the paper that “the NCAA was “aware of the investigation, allegations and actions of the individuals we had under investigation.”
“We are aware of it and will do our due diligence in looking into the matter,” UGA athletic spokesman Claude Felton told the Athens Banner-Herald Sunday.
The NCAA will not confirm or deny that they are in the midst of an investigation into the situation involving Jones.
LSU coach Les Miles is one of the more interesting figures in college football, as you all know.
To that point: He’s had the market cornered on Australian punters for the last six seasons. First it was Brad Wing — who was awesome, unlike the officiating in that video — in 2010 and 2011, then it was Jamie Keehn, who punted for LSU from 2012-2015.
But fear not, LSU has another Aussie punter this year in redshirt freshman Josh Growden. Take it away, Les:
I can only imagine Miles is referring to this when he said “speak Australian:”
Ohio State suspended wide receiver Torrance Gibson for the season, but the decision to ban the redshirt freshman didn’t come from coach Urban Meyer or the athletic department.
Meyer made that distinction known on Monday, via ESPN.com:
“It was not from the athletic department or football,” Meyer said during his weekly news conference Monday. “I disagree with it.”
Meyer didn’t provide any details on what transpired or what, if anything, could be done about it given his opposition to the discipline. Ohio State has not commented on the nature of the violation.
Gibson was suspended for a violation of Ohio State’s student code of conduct. He was previously suspended for a game during the 2015 season, a year in which he redshirted.
Georgia coach Kirby Smart said running back Nick Chubb, who tore his PCL last year in a gruesome injury, is 100 percent ready to go for the Bulldogs’ opener Saturday against North Carolina.
Smart said Chubb won’t be on a “pitch count,” confirming that the star running back won’t be limited at all in Week 1. His availability will be key for a Georgia offense that hasn’t named a starter yet, though could very well go with true freshman Jacob Eason over senior Greyson Lambert.
Chubb, who was injured Oct. 10 last year in Georgia’s loss to Tennessee, carried 92 times for 747 yards with seven touchdowns in 2015. The junior has 2,294 yards and 21 touchdowns to his name since exploding onto the national scene as a freshman in 2014.
Unlike his counterpart in Austin, Kansas State coach Bill Snyder revealed who his starting quarterback for Week 1 will be on today’s Big 12 teleconference.
Jesse Ertz, who started K-State’s season opener last year only to suffer a season-ending torn ACL on the first play of the game, will get the nod for the Wildcats’ opener at Stanford on Friday.
Ertz beat out Joe Huebner and Alex Denton to win the job back.
“In all reality, he’s been more consistent than the other two,” Snyder said.
K-State went 6-7 last year with Huebner as its quarterback and lost to Arkansas in the Liberty Bowl. Huebner completed 47.6 percent of his passes for 1,837 yards with nine touchdowns and 10 interceptions, and also rushed 180 times for 613 yards with 13 touchdowns.
Ertz, a former two-star recruit from Burlington, Iowa, hadn’t appeared in a college game before suffering that season-ending injury against South Dakota State last year.