It’s not often that a head coach finds himself in line for a dismissal as his team’s preparing to play for a conference championship, yet that’s precisely the position Rick Neuheisel finds himself in Sunday morning.
In the aftermath of an embarrassing 50-0 loss to cross-town rival USC, multiple reports surfaced that Neuheisel will be out after Pac-12 South “champion” UCLA gets their heads handed to them by Oregon in the conference championship game Friday night.
The Los Angeles Times writes that “Neuheisel’s chances of retaining his job are bleak, according to influential people close to the program who did not want to be identified publicly because the decision was not final.” Citing multiple sources close to the program, the Los Angeles Daily News writes that “Neuheisel will be relieved of his duties following the team’s appearance in the Pacific-12 Conference championship game Friday.”
Following the shellacking at the hands of the Trojans Saturday night, athletic director Dan Guerrero would not specifically address Neuheisel’s job status.
“We will do a valid assessment when we’re done strapping on the uniform,” Guerrero said.
Despite claiming the divisional crown, the Bruins are just 6-6 this season. Were it not for Arizona State’s four-game implosion to end the season that will likely cost Dennis Erickson his job, Neuheisel could very well have been dismissed shortly after last night’s game, if not earlier.
As for potential replacements, the Orange County Register reports that Boise State coach ChrisPeterson, Houston’s Kevin Sumlin and Cincinnati’s Butch Jones the leading candidates.
For the second time in less than a month, two members of the Purdue football program have found themselves on the wrong side of the law.
This time around it’s a pair of freshmen, linebacker Wyatt Cook and defensive end Chazmyn Turner, who are in a bit of a predicament, with the Indianapolis Star reporting that both players were arrested over the weekend. Cook was charged with minor consumption of alcohol while Turner was charged with possession of marijuana.
No details of what led to the arrests and charges were made public. The program is aware of the incident, but have not stated what if any punishment either could be facing.
Cook was a three-star member of this year’s recruiting class, Turner a two-star. Neither has played in a game this season.
In the middle of last month, two freshmen cornerbacks, Evyn Cooper and David Rose, were arrested and charged in connection to stolen bicycles. Those two were members of this year’s recruiting class as well.
It is no secret that Under Armour is making a nice serious push in acquiring university apparel deals, but the Texas Longhorns is not one it will be likely to whisk away from The Swoosh. According to one report from the Austin American-Statesman, University of Texas officials broke off a meeting with Under Armour and are now expected to stay with Nike moving forward.
The University of Texas has been a partner with Nike since 2000. The contract between the two gives Nike an exclusive window in which it can match or improve on any offers made to the school from rival companies such as Under Armour or Adidas. It is unknown if Under Armour made a formal offer to Texas or how much such an offer could have been valued. What is pretty much commonly known is the Texas brand is still a nice asset in the athletics apparel business, even if the Longhorns are struggling on the football field. Having Texas wear your gear is still a quality investment, which makes Texas a highly sought-after commodity.
Per the American-Statesman report, Texas is expected to sign what would be the biggest deal currently going in collegiate athletics. Considering the handsome deal recently signed between Nike and Michigan, that would mean Texas would be looking forward to more than $169 million from Nike. Michigan signed a 15-year contract valued at $169 million, which will bring an end to its current relationship with Adidas in 2016. As part of the deal, Michigan will become the first football program to wear the Jordan brand logo on its football uniforms. Could Texas be the next? For now that is just something to ponder.
Nike recently lost partners at Arizona State and Miami. Last year Notre Dame began a new partnership with Under Armour, signing a $90 million contract.