From ESPN’s David Hale, who wrote a fantastic story on why golf is so important for some college football coaches: South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier welcomes being challenged to a round of golf by one of his players, but he’s never lost.
The last to take his shot was kicker Ryan Succop, who played at South Carolina from 2005-08. Succop was good, and Spurrier knew it. The kickers are always the ones to worry about. So the coach made sure to set the odds in his favor, scheduling their match just as spring practice drew to a close. Spurrier had been out on the course enough to shake off the rust during the previous month, but the players rarely have enough time.
“You have to pick your spots when you play someone who’s a lot better than you,” Spurrier said.
Players only get one chance to beat the head ball coach. Succop had two triple-bogeys and shot two strokes worse than Spurrier, though he still shot a 79, which is still excellent.
There’s a lot more to Hale’s story than just the Spurrier anecdote — for a lot of these coaches, golf is an escape from the hectic nature of their jobs at the top of college football. Interesting stuff.
(Of course, Spurrier had another great quote this week, so it’s been a pretty good week for the HBC.)
Auburn head coach Gus Malzhan is a rich man. He’s set to become even richer.
It’s no secret that the Tigers’ head coach agreed to a new deal back in December that was worth a reported seven years at roughly $7 million a season. While the overall value of that would work out to around $49 million if Malzahn stays on the Plains until 2025, that’s not quite the amount that the school is committing to the coach if they decided to make a change down the road.
Speaking at a news conference for new athletic director Allen Greene on Friday, Auburn president Steven Leath told the Montgomery Advertiser that just over half of the money in the deal is fully guaranteed (so roughly $24.5 million) and that while there is an increased buyout on the Tigers side, it is not close to the reported $49 million mark that some thought it would be when figures were flying around at the end of 2017.
“I’m still a trust guy,” Leath told the paper. “Gus and I are functioning well together. We know the basic tenets, we’ve drawn things up and sent it to his attorney. So we’ll get that cleaned up pretty soon.”
He also confirmed the deal has not been signed by either side.
While Malzahn does seem like he’s on solid footing after guiding the team to an Iron Bowl victory, a SEC West title and a New Year’s Six bowl berth last season, he’s certainly no stranger to the hot seat given the fan base he works with and the sky-high expectations for the school. Either way, he’ll enter 2018 as one of the highest paid coaches in the country and a very rich man going forward, even if it wasn’t quite the security that some thought he was getting after a rumored flirtation with Arkansas several weeks ago.
Auburn checks in at No. 16 in CFT’s Way-Too-Early Top 25 for next season.
It’s becoming a regular occurrence around Madison this time of year but Wisconsin has renewed head coach Paul Chryst’s contract once again.
The UW Athletic Board approved the deal on Friday and keeps Chryst around with a five-year contract that runs through January 31, 2023. Other terms of the contract were not announced but this is pretty standard operating procedure for the school after the board did the same back in 2017 and 2016 to keep the coach on what amounts to a rolling five-year deal.
Based on his upgraded deal that agreed to last winter, Chryst is set to set make $3.3 million in 2018 with additional annual raises of $100,000 each year through 2023.
Chryst is 34–7 at his alma mater (53-26 overall as a head coach) and is coming off the team’s best season several years after going 13-1 in 2017 and capping things off with a victory over Miami in the Orange Bowl. The Badgers could be even better in 2018 given what returns to the starting lineup and were slotted in at No. 5 in CFT’s Way-Too-Early Top 25 for next season as a result.
Mike Bobo finally has his defensive coordinator as Colorado State announced on Friday that long time coaching veteran John Jancek was hired to run the Rams’ defense.
“I’ve had the opportunity to coach on the same staff with John at Georgia, and I’ve coordinated offenses that have gone up against his defenses,” Bobo said in a statement. “He has a great deal of experience coaching and winning at the highest levels of college football, and I’m very excited he is part of the Ram Family.”
The hire of Jancek comes a little over a week after the program nearly brought in former Alabama assistant Derrick Ansley, who was set to head to Fort Collins to take the DC job before getting hired by the Oakland Raiders and their new coach Jon Gruden. The team had an opening at the position after Marty English retired following the 2017 season.
Jancek most recently was a defensive consultant at Kentucky this past season but spent the three years prior as the coordinator at SEC rival Tennessee. All told, this is his fifth stop as a defensive coordinator at the FBS level — including a stint at Georgia that overlapped with Bobo’s tenure in Athens from 2005-2009. He also spent one season as the safeties coach at South Florida in 2016 in his last full-time on the field role as a coach.
Jancek’s move west caps off a busy week for Colorado State’s staff after Dave Johnson was hired as run game coordinator and offensive line coach on Tuesday.
Zach Rogers ended the 2017 season as a starter at Arkansas. Now, he’s set to begin the next first phase of his life post-football.
Rogers’ father confirmed to the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette that his son has decided to give up playing college football. According to the dad, the offensive lineman is pursuing a career in law enforcement, with the Democrat-Gazette reporting that Rogers has already interviewed with two police agencies in Washington County (Ark.).
A three-star member of the Razorbacks’ 2015 recruiting class, Rogers was rated as the No. 27 offensive guard in the country and the No. 48 player at any position in the state of Texas. After redshirting as a true freshman, Rogers played in three games in 2016.
Last season, when Frank Ragnow, a third-team All-American, went down with a season-ending injury, Rogers started the final five games of the year. Those were the only games he started in his collegiate career, although he would’ve entered summer camp this year as the favorite to land the starting job in the middle of the Hogs’ line.
Now, as the Democrat-Gazette notes, new head coach Chad Morris oversees a roster without a player who’s ever played the center position at this level.