As it turns out, it’s USF that will see a prospect gain from Ohio State’s recruiting loss.
Bruce Judson is a four-star 2017 recruit rated as the No. 37 player at any position in the talent-rich state of Florida. He committed to Ohio State in January of 2015, becoming one of the first OSU commitments for the 2017 cycle. In October of 2015, Judson abruptly decommitted from the Buckeyes.
Why? Generally speaking, there was, in Judson’s opinion, a lack of communication between himself and Meyer post-commitment. “Coach Meyer contacted me enough to get my commitment,” Judson said, “[b]ut after a couple months, he just stopped talking to me.”
Specifically, however, there was one incident that seemed to lead to the decommitment — Meyer not recognizing Judson while on a visit. From SECCountry.com‘s early-May interview with Judson:
Long story short, I was walking in the hallway about to go to the indoor field and work out. (Meyer) was like, ‘Hey.’ I looked around. ‘Come here.’ He was like, ‘How you doing, you like your visit?’ I said, ‘Yeah.’ Then he’s like, ‘What up Richard LeCounte? Are you showing this guy (Judson) around?’ I was like, ‘Coach, I’m showing him around.’ He asked me, ‘Who are you?’ I told him Bruce. He said, ‘Oh, Bruce Judson from Florida. The speedy guy.’ I was like, ‘Yeah.’ He said, ‘I’m glad that you’re on board and glad you got up here.’ After that, I knew I was de-committing.
Fast-forward nearly three months, and Judson has now given a verbal commitment to USF. And, the fact that the Bulls are at least going to take a peek at the athlete at the quarterback position seemed to tilt the odds in the AAC program’s favor.
“USF told me I can come in my freshman year and work into the quarterback rotation and start at another position,” said Judson told the Orlando Sentinel. “I know I got big shoes to fill … going in trying to step in Quinton Flowers shoes at quarterback. I’m ready to fill his shoes and make something special at USF.”
In the face of intense pressure, the College Football Playoff has officially — and finally — blinked.
By most accounts, including the most important metric, television ratings, the New Year’s Eve slot for the College Football Playoff semifinal games was an abject failure. Despite the ratings bath and the calls from most corners to move the semifinals off New Year’s Eve, the powers that be had (stubbornly) remained steadfast in creating a new “holiday tradition.”
In March, however, the CFP at least somewhat acknowledged an issue, announcing that the start times for the 2016 playoff semifinals, on New Year’s Eve yet again, would be pushed back an hour from the year before. The thaw continued in April, with executive director Bill Hancock stating that the CFP “will continue to review this matter.” A couple of weeks ago, Hancock heavily intimated that it would be when, not if the semifinals would be moved off the last day of the year.
Thursday, that (mostly) came to fruition as the CFP announced that all future playoff games through the 2025 season (last year of the current 12-year contract) will be played either on a Saturday or a holiday. That doesn’t mean that New Year’s Eve is completely off the table, though.
One, the two semifinal games scheduled for New Year’s Eve following the 2016 season will go off as planned as it’s too late in the process to move them off that date; plus, Dec. 31 falls on a Saturday this year and would’ve been played on New Year’s Eve anyway under this new way of doing playoff business. Secondly, the semifinal games for the 2021 and 2022 seasons will still be played on Dec. 31. The games for the 2022 season will be played on a Saturday, on a Friday in 2021.
There are significant changes to the rotation, however, as the semifinal games that had been scheduled to be played on New Year’s Eve following the 2018, 2019, 2024 and 2025 seasons will now be played on Saturday, Dec. 29; Saturday, Dec. 28; Saturday, December 28; and Saturday, Dec. 27, respectively.
In the end, it was the right call for the sport and, more importantly, the fans.
“We had healthy discussions with a lot of people who love college football and we concluded that making these changes would be the right thing to do for our fans.” said Hancock in a statement.
“We tried to do something special with New Year’s Eve, even when it fell on a weekday. But after studying this to see if it worked, we think we can do better. These adjustments will allow more people to experience the games they enjoy so much. For these four years, our previous call is reversed.”
Below is how the revamped College Football Playoff rotation will look moving forward:
Even with that dark cloud handing over his head, Bo Davis didn’t stay unemployed for too long.
In late April, 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. The nature of the violations were not revealed, but the NCAA had made “multiple” investigations into the matter and Alabama has opened its own corresponding inquiry.
A day later, the Tide announced that Davis had, ahem, “submitted his letter of resignation.”
Nearly three months to the day later, the Jacksonville Jaguars announced that Davis was one of five coaching interns who have been hired by the NFL club. Davis will be helping the Jaguars with special teams.
Davis’ last foray into the NFL came with Nick Saban‘s Miami Dolphins in 2006.
In Tuscaloosa, Davis was officially replaced by Karl Dunbar a couple of weeks after his “resignation.” The investigations into the allegations of recruiting improprieties is ongoing.
Oklahoma State already knew it was going to be forced to replaced the production lost with the departure of leading pass-catcher David Glidden. Now, at least early on, the Cowboys will have to replace a man who was expected to help replace Glidden’s lost production as well.
According to a report from The Oklahoman, Marcell Ateman may not make his debut this coming season until October because of surgery performed on his foot recently. Ateman sustained a non-contact injury during summer workouts.
Should Ateman not return until the second month of the season, he would, at minimum, miss games against SE Louisiana (Sept. 3), Central Michigan (Sept. 10), Pittsburgh (Sept. 17) and at Baylor (Sept. 24). They also have a home date with Texas the first of October.
Ateman’s position coach confirmed the procedure to the newspaper, although he didn’t give a timeline for a return.
“I don’t know [when] that’s going to be,” said Kasey Dunn. “I’m hoping as soon as possible. He’s had a great summer. I don’t think it’s that big of a deal. I think he’ll be back probably sooner than later.
“I’m bummed though, because it’s a little bit of a setback for him. His play was going up, up, up. And it all started about Game 6 or 7 last year, where he really started to climb. Played well against Baylor. Played really well against Ole Miss. Had a great offseason. Summer was killer. And then he gets nicked.”
At least one report, and at least in these early stages, is a bit more optimistic:
#okstate source just told me Marcell Ateman had foot surgery but might be back for season opener. They won’t rush him for that game though.
— Nathan Thompson (@NathanDThompson) July 27, 2016
Ateman’s 45 receptions and 766 receiving yards were each third on the team. His five touchdown receptions were good for second.
The good news for the Cowboys is that one of their most productive pass-catchers of a year ago, second-team All-Big performer James Washington (53-1087-10), returns, as do four other receivers who caught at least 17 passes in 2015 — Jalen McCleskey (29-253-3), Austin Hays (22-200-1), Jhajuan Seales (18-321-2) and Blake Jarwin (17-200-2).