As if Ronald Darby‘s true freshman season at Florida State wasn’t outstanding enough, it becomes even more impressive when viewed in the light of what most would consider a rather significant injury.
Dating back to his high school days, Darby has been bothered by a hernia that he both literally and figuratively simply ran through — in addition to being a highly-touted football recruit, Darby is also something of a track phenom. The injury, though, had gotten to the point where simply running through it was no longer an option as the Orlando Sentinel reports the defensive back underwent surgery earlier this month to repair a sports hernia.
The procedure and subsequent rehab could sideline Darby through May, which would prevent him in participating in the Seminoles’ spring practice sessions that are set to commence in March. Darby could also miss the outdoor track season as a result of the surgery.
A Seminoles track coach told the Sentinel that, since Darby is on a football scholarship, they’ll defer to the football program as far as a timetable on a return to competition.
“We saw last year in high school that he had the injury last year and didn’t get it fixed and he didn’t run very well,” Ken Harnden said. “I would much rather get it right and come back and have him try to run really fast next year. So we’re not going to rush it.
“And they’re [the football program] paying the bills so we have to be careful with what we do over here.”
In 2012, Darby played in all 14 games and, at season’s end, was named the ACC’s Defensive Rookie of the Year. With fellow corner Xavier Rhodes leaving early for the NFL draft, Darby will be expected to play a more integral role in an FSU defense that’s been one of the top units in the country over the past couple of seasons.
The attorney for Oklahoma running back Rodney Anderson labeled the allegations against his client “patently false.” A few days later, the Sooners football player has been vindicated.
At a press conference Thursday afternoon, Cleveland County (Okla.) District Attorney Greg Mashburn announced that his office would not pursue charges against Anderson. The decision came after the prosecutor met with a Norman Police Department detective Tuesday afternoon and again Thursday morning.
Earlier this month, a woman filed for an emergency order of protection against Anderson; additional details subsequently emerged, with the woman describing the player in a written statement to the court as the “alleged rapist” and herself as the “victim of rape.” A hearing on the protective order had been scheduled for Dec. 18.
The alleged assault occurred Nov. 16, with the alleged victim claiming that she began recalling details of the alleged attack the weekend of Dec. 2 as she was speaking to a friend.
Late last week, it was reported that Anderson passed a three-hour lie detector test administered to him this past week by a retired FBI polygraph examiner. Bill Brown, the retired FBI investigator who has reportedly performed in excess of 3,500 such polygraph exams, was hired by Derek Chance, Anderson’s attorney, to administer the test. That attorney claimed that the accuser only went to the authorities with her claims after Anderson had rejected several of her advances.
Anderson currently leads the Sooners with 960 yards rushing and 11 touchdowns on the ground. He’s also caught 16 passes for 283 yards and another five touchdowns coming out of the backfield.
No. 2 Oklahoma is set to face No. 3 Georgia in the Rose Bowl New Year’s Day, with the winner facing the Clemson-Alabama winner for the right to play for the 2017 College Football Playoff championship.
For the second time since the regular season ended, Scott Frost is on the receiving end of some coaching hardware.
For his work at UCF, the Football Writers Association of America announced Thursday that Frost has been named as the recipient of the 2017 Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year Award. Frost, who was named as the new head coach at Nebraska upon the completion of the regular season, was also honored as the Home Depot Coach of the Year last week.
“Scott Frost is one of the up-and-coming coaches in college football,” said FWAA president Dave Jones in a statement. “What he did at UCF was nothing short of remarkable in just two seasons.”
Taking over a team that went 0-12 in 2015, Frost coached UCF to a 6-7 record last season. This season, Frost has the 12th-ranked Knights sitting at 12-0 after winning the football program’s second outright AAC championship and earning the Group of Five’s New Year’s Six bowl bid.
After some initial uncertainty, it was confirmed earlier this week that Frost will coach UCF in its Peach Bowl matchup with Auburn.
There were seven other finalists for this year’s Robinson Award, including Bill Clark, UAB; Lane Kiffin, FAU; Jeff Monken, Army; Lincoln Riley, Oklahoma; Kirby Smart, Georgia; Dabo Swinney, Clemson; and Jeff Tedford, Fresno State. Riley, Smart and Swinney all led their respective teams to this year’s College Football Playoff.
Just a little more than halfway through his original deal, Mike Bobo is getting a contractual attaboy.
Colorado State announced Thursday that Bobo has signed a three-year contract extension with the university. Bobo’s original’s deal was set to run through the 2020 season; this new deal extends him out through the 2022 season.
Under the extension, Bobo’s pay for the 2018 season will increase from $1.65 million to $1.8 million. For the remainder of the contract, he’ll be due raises of $100,000 annually.
“Mike Bobo has developed a strong foundation for our football program,” a statement from athletic director Joe Parker began. “His leadership and focus on creating an environment where young people can grow in their academic and athletic pursuits is the essence of intercollegiate athletics. We have shared championship aspirations for our program and continuity is an extremely important element to chartering the path toward achieving those aspirations.”
Through nearly three full seasons at CSU, Bobo has guided the Rams to seven wins each season, with this year’s bowl game still to be played. He is the first head coach in the football program’s history to reach a bowl game in each of his first three seasons.
The legendary Sonny Lubick is the only other CSU coach to lead the Rams to bowl games three seasons in a row.
“I am very grateful for the confidence shown in me by both Joe Parker and Tony Frank,” the former Georgia offensive coordinator said. “It is humbling and gratifying to be able to show my commitment to Colorado State University with the signing of this extension. I’m thankful for the terrific support of our fans and alumni, and the Fort Collins community that has welcomed my family and me, and has made us feel at home here. I would also like to thank the outstanding student-athletes and coaches in our program, as well as the university community for all of their hard work, support and investment in our football program. To see our new on-campus stadium become a reality is something we all are very proud of.”
Recruiting restrictions will remain in place for one former member of Nick Saban’s coaching staff.
The NCAA announced Thursday that former Alabama and current UT-San Antonio assistant coach Bo Davis must serve a two-year show-cause order instituted earlier this year. Davis had appealed to the NCAA Division I Infractions Appeals Committee to have the sanction removed.
The NCAA announced in April of this year that Davis was found by the Committee on Infractions to have “acted unethically when he provided false or misleading information about impermissible recruiting contacts” and was slapped with the order as a result.
In late April of last year, reports surfaced that Davis was expected to resign or be fired as Alabama’s defensive line coach after the school opened an inquiry into possible NCAA violations on the recruiting trail. A day later, the Tide announced that Davis had, ahem, “submitted his letter of resignation.”
The show-cause order runs from April 14, 2017, through April 13, 2019; Davis had argued in his appeal that the clock on the order should’ve started on the day he resigned from his job at Alabama. From the NCAA’s decision:
However, the appellate committee noted that neither NCAA rules nor past cases consider timing other than the announcement of penalties as the start date. The committee also noted the infractions panel provided substantial leniency to the former assistant coach given that he was subject to a show cause order ranging from a minimum of five years to a maximum of 10 years with a prohibition on all athletically related duties. The infractions panel noted in its decision that this shorter show-cause penalty was due to the nature of the underlying recruiting violations and the university’s swift action once the violations came to its attention.
As part of the NCAA-mandated sanctions, Davis is barred from all off-campus recruiting activities until the order runs out in April of 2019. Davis was hired by UT-San Antonio in February of this year as defensive line coach, and, at least for now, is still serving in that same capacity.