Forty-three years after he was convicted of felony larceny for his role in an armed robbery, 1972 Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Rodgers is seeking a pardon from the state of Nebraska.
On Thursday he’ll go before the state’s Board of Pardons and ask to have his conviction pardoned. He is eligible to be granted the pardon because at least 10 years have passed without any convictions or law enforcement issues by the former Cornhusker.
Rodgers and a couple of his buddies robbed a Lincoln, Neb., gas station in 1970, near the end of his freshman year. They got away with $90, which they split three ways. Two years later, Rodgers won the school’s first Heisman Trophy.
Rodgers went on to earn two degrees from his alma mater, in journalism and advertising. But the stigma of being an ex-felon has been a burden on him all this time.
“I have a history of 43 years now of rather decent things happening,” Rodgers said. “I’ve done and accomplished more things after I had a felony charge than most people ever do.”
Rodgers is getting support in his pardon effort from former Nebraska head coach Tom Osborne, who was Rodgers’ position coach at the time. Osborne wrote to the Pardons Board on his behalf.
“He has done many good things the last 40 years,” Osborne said, noting Rodgers’ work with charities and youth.
It seems the tumultuous offseason that Mark Dantonio has experienced dating back to last year is not ending with the 2017 campaign being well underway for his Spartans. That’s because the Michigan State head coach is dealing with yet another headache, this time caused by star running back LJ Scott. The Lansing State Journal reports that Scott was arrested on Wednesday for driving on a suspended license.
Now you might say, oh that’s not that big of a deal all things considered. Generally you’d be correct depending on the circumstances. Yet in this case it kind of is a big deal because this is the seventh time — yes, seven times — Scott has been arrested for the same general offense. So yeah.
Per the LSJ:
‘Scott, 21, was arrested and later released on a personal recognizance bond, East Lansing Police spokesman Lt. Chad Connelly said Thursday. He declined to comment further because Scott has not yet been arraigned.
The charge carries up to a year in jail if Scott is convicted because he has at least one prior conviction on the same charge, which is typically a 93-day misdemeanor.’
What might be worse is that the junior has been cited for the same issue across two different states, including Michigan and his native Ohio. The first instance happened back in February 2016 according to the paper, but charges were dropped after a citation was issued and a fine paid. Scott got caught later in March 2016 when he was speeding, another time in April 2016 after being involved in a car crash, and yet again in July 2016 by campus police.
But wait, there’s more.
Scott was pulled over and charged again this past March and another time as recently as July. The LSJ does not have information as to why his license was suspended in the first place but we can offer a few guesses.
What might be even more infuriating for Dantonio and the coaching staff is that Scott just posted a career high against Minnesota (194 yards) and seemed to finally emerge as the primary ball carrier over senior Gerald Holmes and fellow junior Madre London.
The school had not released a statement regarding the matter but it’s probably safe to assume that the Spartans will be without Scott on Saturday when they play Indiana.
If you wanted to see BYU and East Carolina play some more football, congrats because this is your lucky day.
Prior to the Cougars’ trip to Greenville this week, the two schools announced on Thursday that they will be adding another two game set to their ongoing series. As these schedule announcements usually do, the dates are well into the future — with a game in Provo for Oct. 15, 2022 between the two teams and a return date for Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium back east on Oct. 19, 2024.
“We have enjoyed the opportunity to play teams from the American Athletic Conference, including the current series with East Carolina,” BYU athletics director Tom Holmoe said in a release. “ECU is a great matchup and it was an easy decision to schedule another series with them. It provides our team with a unique travel opportunity, and it gives Cougar fans who live in the southeast another opportunity to see us play.”
The two sides are wrapping up the first two game series on Saturday as BYU travels to East Carolina in a game where the teams combined record is a whopping 2-12. The Cougars won 45-38 last year in Utah during the first meeting.
The upcoming series gives ECU three non-conference opponents for both 2022 and 2024 as a result, and becomes the first team scheduled by BYU for the 2024 slate.
So much for that.
In March, Antonio “A.C.” Carter, a former Alabama wide receiver, filed a lawsuit against new Florida Atlantic head coach and former UA offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin, FAU and the state of Florida. The suit claimed that Kiffin deliberately misled him regarding a job on the FAU football staff in order to benefit from his family relationship with a prospective recruit.
Thursday, the Associated Press has reported, Shelby County (Ala.) Circuit Judge Lara Alvis dismissed Carter’s case. As the lawsuit was dismissed with prejudice, it cannot be refiled.
Carter claimed that he was told by Kiffin earlier this year that his hiring as assistant strength & conditioning coach for the Owls was a “done” deal. He and his wife quit their jobs based on Kiffin’s assurances and moved to the campus, where Carter subsequently helped Kiffin and the Owls in recruiting.
However, after National Signing Day, Carter was told he would not be hired as he had not passed a background check. Carter had two unspecified prior minor misdemeanor charges on his record, one of which he claimed the prosecutor refused to pursue more than seven years ago. This turn of events came after an unnamed former four-star recruit with whom Carter had a personal relationship had already signed his National Letter of Intent with FAU.
In his first season at FAU, Kiffin has the Owls, which went 3-9 each of the past three seasons, at 3-3 and tied with Marshall at 2-0 in the East Division of Conference USA.
We’re all in the wrong business.
Earlier this month, Gary Andersen abruptly stepped down as Oregon State’s head football coach. While cornerbacks coach Cory Hall was named interim head coach, the football program is on the hunt for a permanent replacement.
To aid in that search, OSU has hired the search firm of DH International, Inc. And, according to information obtained by The Oregonian, that Chicago-based company could potentially get paid for its efforts.
DHR International, Inc. will conduct the search for a fee that “shall not exceed $200,000,” although Oregon State redacted the value of each fee installment in its response to a public records request.
The newspaper also wrote that “[athletic director Rick] Barnes… previously worked with DHR International when finding a new athletic director when he left Pitt for OSU.” It was DH International that also recommended Barnes for the Pitt job.