Posted by John Taylor on January 10, 2014, 4:53 PM EDT
One of three Cal football players to transfer since the end of the 2013 season, Johnny Ragin has found himself a new football home for the 2014 season and beyond.
The linebacker, Oregon announced, has transferred into the Ducks football program and is already enrolled in school. Because he transferred within the Pac-12 conference, Ragin would normally be forced to sit out the next two seasons; however, Ragin won an appeal and, after sitting out 2014, will be eligible to play for the Ducks in 2015.
Ragin becomes the second Cal player to win an appeal after transferring within the conference, joining offensive lineman Freddie Tagaloa. The middle of last month, Tagaloa announced he would be transferring to Arizona.
A three-star member of Cal’s 2013 recruiting class, Ragin was rated as the No. 4 player in the state of Oregon. He played in eight games as a true freshman.
Posted by John Taylor on April 21, 2015, 7:57 AM EDT
I think this is the point in the program where I remind everyone, once again, that marijuana should be legal before the whiny comments commence.
Now, with that out of the way, cornerback Boaz Joseph (pictured, right) was cited last Thursday by University of Nebraska-Lincoln police for possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia. The citations stemmed from an investigation related to a different matter.
Investigators found 3.3 grams of marijuana, about one-tenth of an ounce, in a tobacco tin in Joseph’s room in a 711 Folsom Lane apartment, Assistant Police Chief Charlotte Evans said Monday.
Joseph, 21, was one of three people cited for having drugs and paraphernalia in the apartment after officers executed a search warrant there in a fraud investigation, Evans said.
UNL police were looking for credit card and shipping information suspected to be at the apartment after someone tried to ship speakers there using a stolen credit card, she said.
Another of the three cited was Ishmail Jackson, a former Cornhusker football player who’s most famous for being the nephew of actor Matt Damon and for being suspended for the Gator Bowl following the 2013 season.
In June of last year, Joseph, a redshirt freshman, was cited for theft by unlawful taking, the Omaha World-Herald wrote at the time, “after a surveillance video allegedly captured him walking by, boarding and riding off on a ‘bait bike’ used by [University of Nebraska-Lincoln] police to curb bike theft.”
“Coach [Mike] Riley and athletics administration are aware of the incident,” an NU statement regarding the latest incident read. “We have no additional comment at this time.”
After taking a redshirt his true freshman season in 2013, Joseph played in five games in 2014. Most of that game action came on special teams.
Posted by John Taylor on April 21, 2015, 6:46 AM EDT
Yep. Argyle. On a football uniform.
Monday, North Carolina, in conjunction with apparel supplier Nike, announced what it described as a “refresh” of the Tar Heels’ “brand identity.” The refreshed look is the culmination of an 18-month process, which the university stated utilized “student-athletes, coaches, administrators and alumni to gather insights on key attributes of the institution.”
The refresh will impact all 28 UNC varsity sports, not just the football team.
“We are excited to once again partner with Nike, one of the most recognizable brands in the world, to help us refresh and refine our marks and logos,” athletic director Bubba Cunningham said in a statement. “The changes are subtle, but they celebrate our history and create consistency as we further seek to distinguish our brand. This is our blue and we’re proud of it.”
The most interesting aspect of the refresh is that argyle, a fixture on the basketball program’s uniforms for more than two decades, has been integrated into the new football look, both on the uniforms and the helmets. Take a look at the new duds that would no doubt turn Alex P. Keaton and Carlton Banks into Tar Heel football fans:
While that will very likely be the case with Willis, he’s giving immediate eligibility, Dorial Green-Beckham-style, the old college try.
In a conversation with CaneSport.com, Willis claims that he was actually dismissed by new UF head coach Jim McElwain. The defensive lineman also confirmed that he has applied for a so-called “run-off” waiver with the NCAA.
The “run-off” waiver is a little known provision of the NCAA handbook where a player can petition to be ruled immediately eligible if the NCAA finds that the player left their previous institution against their will, i.e. they were “run-off” from the program. Here are the requirements to apply for such a waiver, from athleticscholarships.net
Documentation demonstrating that the student-athlete would not have had the opportunity to return to the previous institution’s team for reasons outside the control of the student-athlete.
A written statement from the applicant institution that the student-athlete is in good academic standing and meets all progress-toward-degree requirements at applicant institution.
A written statement from the student-athlete’s previous institution indicating that the previous institution supports the request.
Willis’ self-proclaimed dismissal came after multiple physical run-ins with Gator teammates, so how he could argue that he could not return to the team for reasons outside of his control is head-scratching to say the least. Additionally, as UF and The U are in-state rivals, it seems highly unlikely that the former would help the latter by writing a letter of support for Willis.
A decision on the waiver is expected at some point next month at the earliest.
Posted by John Taylor on April 20, 2015, 8:48 PM EDT
For the second time in six months, Randy Ramsey has some educational issues to clear up before moving forward.
Arkansas head coach Brett Bielema confirmed Monday that Ramsey has been suspended from the football program. According to Bielema, the linebacker needs to clean things up academically, and needs to do it post-haste.
“He has got to have some urgency in the classroom immediately,” Bielema said according to ESPN.com in explaining the suspension. “No off-the-field [legal issues], just got to get him going in the classroom because we invest a lot in them and we hope to have our biggest returns when they are sophomores, juniors and seniors and getting better.”
Ramsey didn’t travel to last October’s game against Texas A&M because of academic issues.
A three-star member of Bielema’s second Razorbacks recruiting class, Ramsey played in seven games as a true freshman last season. He started one of those contests, the Sept. 20 win over Northern Illinois.
Posted by John Taylor on April 20, 2015, 7:45 PM EDT
Make room, David Shaw. And, Jameis Winston, make room on your couch as well.
Earlier this month it was reported that Winston, expected to be selected by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers with the first-overall pick of the 2015 NFL draft, would not attend the Chicago festivities in person. Instead, the 2013 Heisman Trophy winner has decided to stay in his home state of Alabama to be close to his ailing grandmother, who is unable to travel due to health concerns.
According to tweet from a writer on Florida State’s official website, head coach Jimbo Fisher will be in Birmingham for the first round of the draft Thursday night, April 30, as well, offering support to a player who played a major role in FSU’s 2013 national championship. After spending opening night with his former player, Fisher will then spend the next two days, Friday and Saturday, serving as a guest analyst on the NFL Network’s coverage of Rounds 2-7.
Jimbo Fisher said he'll spend the first round of the draft with Jameis Winston in Birmingham.
Posted by John Taylor on April 20, 2015, 5:21 PM EDT
There has to be a recruiting/solicitation parallel in there somewhere, right?
Regardless, the latest individual to land on CFT’s “Days Without An Arrest” ticker is not a player but a coach, with Cal wide receivers coach Pierre Ingram arrested April 16 following a prostitution sting. Ingram, who also holds the title of recruiting coordinator, was charged with misdemeanor solicitation of a lewd act.
The Contra Costa Times writes that Ingram “was arrested after he allegedly solicited an undercover officer online and then showed up at the Motel 6 on Embarcadero.”
There is no word from the school on what this does or doesn’t do to Ingram’s status with the football program moving forward, although an indefinite suspension will likely be the first order of business.
Ingram spent the past two seasons as the Bears’ running backs coach before moving over to receivers. He’s also widely considered the program’s top recruiter.
(Photo credit: Cal athletics)
UPDATED 5:24 p.m. ET: Cal has confirmed that Ingram has been placed on administrative leave, presumably paid, as they further assess the situation. Ingram did not take part in Saturday’s spring game because of the incident.
Posted by John Taylor on April 20, 2015, 4:54 PM EDT
A mini-run of players diving headfirst into offseason legal issues continues, with Northern Illinois the latest program to take a hit.
The DeKalb Daily Chronicle is reporting that linebacker Rasheen Lemon has been arrested on a domestic battery charge. The charges stem from an incident that occurred April 12. No details of what led to the arrest have been released.
NIU officials learned of the situation late last week, and indefinitely suspended Lemon from the football program.
If the incident results in any type of game or games suspension, it would be a significant blow to the Huskies’ defense.
After starting two games in 2013, Lemon started every game in 2014 as a redshirt junior. Lemon was second on the team in tackles (90) and quarterback hurries (six), and tied for second in forced fumbles (two). He was also tied for fifth in sacks (2.5).
Posted by John Taylor on April 20, 2015, 3:54 PM EDT
Earlier this month, Jeremy Johnsonhad yet to separate himself from the rest of the Auburn quarterback pack, even as he’s long been expected to be the successor to Nick Marshall. Monday, the expected officially came to fruition.
Head coach Gus Malzahn took to Twitter Monday afternoon to announce, to the surprise of absolutely no one, Johnson has been named as the Tigers’ starting quarterback. The anointing comes two days after Auburn’s spring game.
“Everyone in our program has 100 percent confidence in him!” Malzahn wrote in his tweet.
Johnson’s main competition had been redshirt freshman Sean White. Jason Smith and Tyler Queen were also technically in the mix.
Posted by John Taylor on April 20, 2015, 3:43 PM EDT
As has been the case for at least a decade, winning a national championship has its presidential privileges.
Monday afternoon, Ohio State became the latest college sports team to be feted at the White House, with President Barack Obama hosting the Buckeyes three months after OSU claimed the first-ever College Football Playoff title. OSU is actually the first college football team since Alabama in 2013 to visit 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue as Florida State was unable to manage a trip to D.C. last year to celebrate the Seminoles’ 2013 title.
This visit marked Urban Meyer‘s third, with the first two coming while he was the head coach at Florida. Meyer was hosted by George W. Bush following the Gators’ first title in 2006, then by Obama following the second one for the 2008 season.
As for this trip, the President hit on several notes surrounding the Buckeyes, mentioning defensive end Joey Bosa‘s now-famous shoulder shrug as well as his newly-shorn locks; thanked running back Ezekiel Elliott for tucking in his shirt, with the preseason Heisman contender asking the POTUS for a little help with the recent rule change on crop-top jerseys; referred to Michigan as “a certain team up North;” and made mention of title-winning quarterback Cardale Jones‘ “12-gauge” nickname.
I'm Just Saying, President Obama asked how was my daughter Chloe AND called me 12Gauge, no big deal
Posted by John Taylor on April 20, 2015, 3:16 PM EDT
In Texas A&M’s Class of 2013, seven wide receivers were signed. With this latest development, as SBNation.com notes, that seven has been whittled down to two.
On his Twitter account Monday afternoon, LaQuvionte Gonzalez announced that he has decided to transfer out of the A&M football program. No reason was given for Gonzalez’s departure, which comes a week or so following the end of spring practice.
A four-star member of A&M’s 2013 recruiting class, Gonzalez was rated as the No. 30 player at any position in the state of Texas and the No. 234 player overall by Rivals.com.
As a true freshman in 2013, Gonzalez was fifth on the team with 21 receptions and 240 receiving yards. His production took a precipitous drop in 2014, however, as he finished with just five receptions for 77 yards.
Ricky Seals-Jones and Jeremy Tabuyo are the only 2013 receivers still with the Aggies. That said, A&M is still loaded with talent at the position, mitigating all of those personnel losses.
Posted by John Taylor on April 20, 2015, 2:49 PM EDT
We don’t know yet to where Darell Garretson will be transferring. We do, though, know one place where he won’t be.
ESPN.com‘s Joe Schad tweeted that the former Utah State quarterback will be unable to transfer to Washington. Garretson had apparently expressed a desire in the Huskies, but because UW is a future USU opponent — the two teams will play in 2015 — the quarterback wasn’t given a release to that program.
Posted by John Taylor on April 20, 2015, 2:27 PM EDT
George O’Leary‘s former team and his current one have agreed to meet on the gridiron a little further down the road, Georgia Tech and UCF announced Monday afternoon.
The Yellow Jackets will travel to Orlando, Fla., on Sept. 16, 2017, and will then host the Knights on Sept. 19, 2020. The 2017 game will mark Tech’s first regular season non-conference game in the state of Florida since Sept. 19, 1981, a 27-6 loss to Florida in Gainesville.
Tech and UCF have met three times previously, the first coming in 1996 and the last in 2000. All three of those games, played at Bobby Dodd Stadium, were won by the Yellow Jackets.
O’Leary has been the head coach at UCF since 2004. Prior to that, he served as Tech’s head coach from 1994-2001.
With the addition of Tech, UCF continues to bolster its future schedules, with previously announced series including Stanford (2015,2019), Michigan (2016), Maryland (2016, 2017) and Texas (2017). Tech had previously announced a future home-and-home with UCF’s in-state rival USF (2021, 2022), and now has games scheduled every year from 2017-22.
Posted by John Taylor on April 20, 2015, 1:47 PM EDT
In mid-January, ESPN filed a lawsuit against the University of Notre Dame contending that the school was withholding police documents involving alleged campus crimes committed by unnamed student-athletes, which would be a violation of Indiana’s open records laws. Three months later, a judge has disagreed.
Monday, the South Bend Tribune writes, “[a] St. Joseph County judge ruled… that the University of Notre Dame isn’t required to give ESPN campus police department records because it’s not a public agency under state law.” While the judge sided with the private institution, he did so with some hesitancy and trepidation.
From the Tribune‘s report:
Superior Court Judge Steven Hostetler said he shared the Indiana public access counselor’s “discomfort” with the notion that a private party can exercise police powers without sharing records related to that power with the public, but that’s simply how the state’s Access to Public Records Act is written and has been interpreted.
Furthermore, the judge wrote in his 11-page ruling that “[t]his court will not strain the language of the statute in order to do what the Legislature has not, even though there are indeed persuasive reasons why the statute should be amended to read the way ESPN desires.”
ESPN had filed an open-records request with the university in November. An Indianapolis attorney representing ESPN told the Tribune he’s uncertain if an appeal of the ruling will be filed.
Posted by John Taylor on April 20, 2015, 12:21 PM EDT
Well, so much for all of the feel-good in the post directly below this one.
According to the Bloomington Herald-Times, Indiana defensive lineman Ralph Green III (pictured, No. 93) was arrested very early Sunday morning following an off-campus incident. Green was charged by Bloomington police officers with a trio of misdemeanors: battery, public intoxication and disorderly conduct.
As for what led to the arrest and charges…
Bloomington Police Department responded to a disturbance at the residence on North Lincoln and found Green struck the victim in the face, causing a complaint of pain, according to a preliminary police report.
IU has yet to comment publicly on the situation.
Green started nine of the 12 games in which he played as a redshirt freshman in 2013. He played in 11 games (no starts) this past season, and is expected to be a significant part of the Hoosiers’ line rotation in 2015.
Posted by John Taylor on April 20, 2015, 11:22 AM EDT
If you can’t hardly stomach all of the off-field issues surrounding the game of college football, this may be the elixir you’ve been looking for.
A few years back, the Pete Carroll-led USC Trojans football team essentially adoptedJake Olson, a teenage fan suffering from cancer of the retina in his right eye (he lost his left eye when he was less than one year old). It was subsequently determined that Olson would need the right eye removed; on his final day of sight prior to the surgery that would leave him blind for the rest of his life, he chose to attend a Trojans football practice.
Fast-forward roughly five years, and Olson is now an 18-year-old young man who became a long-snapper for his high school football team and is about to embark on his journey as a college student — at USC, of course.
Olson, the Los Angeles Times writes, “is a recipient of a Swim With Mike scholarship, awarded annually from the Physically Challenged Athletes Scholarship fund.” While he’s not a part of the Trojans’ incoming recruiting class, it appears that he will have part of his favorite team as a walk-on.
From the Times‘ report:
Olson, 18, was introduced as a Swim With Mike scholarship winner in February during an event where video highlights of incoming football players were shown to Trojans fans. He would join the program as a walk-on.
Olson said he was “stoked” to be headed to USC, which also accepted his sister.
“It’s a dream come true,” he said.
For Steve Sarkisian, it’s a matter of when, not if, Olson takes the field in a real football game.
“Someday, he’s going to snap in a game for us,” the head coach said. “When? I don’t know. But it will happen.
“When that day comes, it will be awesome.”
“I can’t even fathom what an extraordinary thing that would be,” Carroll said when asked about Olson playing in a game for his former program, with Olson, when the subject of preferential treatment came up, adding, “[I] just [want] the opportunity to prove myself like anyone else.”
Bravo to Olson, Sarkisian, Carroll and the entire USC program. That is going to be one special day when the young man takes the field for the first time.