Jameis Winston

Report: FSU will pay part of Jameis Winston’s insurance policy


Florida State protects its assets, and the school’s primary asset at the moment is quarterback Jameis Winston.

The school agreed to pay part of Winston’s $10 million disability and loss of value insurance policy, according to ESPN.com’s Jared Shanker.

The amount Florida State will contribute hasn’t been publicly revealed, but the estimated premium on the policy is in upwards of $60,000.

Florida State will pay its share out of the school’s Student Assistant Fund. The Student Assistant Fund was created “to assist student-athletes in meeting financial needs that arise in conjunction with participation in intercollegiate athletics, enrollment in an academic curriculum or that recognize academic achievement.”

Winston is the second high-profile NFL prospect to receive similar assistance. Texas A&M did the same for offensive tackle Cedric Ogbuehi to help sway his decision.

Florida State head coach Jimbo Fisher fully advocates this type of assistance to keep athletes in school.

“To me, that’s the greatest thing that’s going on in college sports today because it keeps kids in school,” Fisher said during ACC Media Days. “They all want to leave for the money. If I know the money is guaranteed, I can stay and get a college degree.”

Florida State is clearly investing long-term in their Heisman Trophy winner. Winston, who led Florida State to an ACC title and a national championship, is eligible to leave for the NFL after this season. By investing in Winston now, it could persuade the quarterback to stay in Tallahassee beyond the spring of 2015.

After all, Winston’s father, Antonor Winston, already wants his son “to succeed with one more year in baseball and two more years in football.”

Florida State just may have bought itself a little more time.

Starting LB C.J. Johnson reveals surgery on social media, Ole Miss confirms

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Ole Miss will be without a starting piece of its defensive puzzle for an extended period of time, both the player and the school revealed Tuesday.

With rumors swirling about his condition, C.J. Johnson confirmed on his personal Twitter account late this morning that he will be undergoing surgery at some point in the not-too-distant future.  The linebacker sustained an injury to his left knee in last Saturday’s loss to Florida and did not return to the contest.

Subsequent to that posting, Ole Miss confirmed that Johnson underwent surgery earlier in the day to repair a torn meniscus in his knee.  The procedure and rehab will sideline Johnson for a period of 4-6 weeks.

At the low-end of the prognosis, Johnson would miss the next four games — New Mexico State, Memphis, Texas A&M, Auburn — and return for the Nov. 7 game against Arkansas.  The high-end would have him sidelined until the regular-season finale against Mississippi State.

Johnson had started all five games at middle linebacker for the Rebels.  He started 26 games at defensive end the past three years before moving to linebacker.

Butch Jones labels rumor of ‘physical altercation’ with Vols player ‘absolutely ridiculous’

ATHENS, GA - SEPTEMBER 27:  Head coach Butch Jones of the Tennessee Volunteers yells at Marquez North #8 during the game against the Georgia Bulldogs at Sanford Stadium on September 27, 2014 in Athens, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
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Already in the crosshairs for his 2-3 team’s late-game failures, Butch Jones now finds himself under increasing scrutiny for something that allegedly happened a couple of months ago.

The website Gridiron.com, which features such respected journalists Tony Barnhart and Mike Huguenin among others, reported earlier today that the Tennessee head coach was involved in what was described as a “physical altercation” with senior offensive lineman Mack Crowder during summer camp this past August.  The source close to the program added that practice film that day captured the alleged incident, although it’s unclear if that tapes still exists.

From the site’s report:

The incident occurred during fall camp, about the time that news started to come out about a few offensive linemen who were considering stepping away from the program. Crowder walked off the practice field one day and missed a day or two of practice, and Brett Kendrick and Dylan Wiesman were said to be contemplating their futures. Sources say the players’ actions stemmed from an incident between Jones and Crowder.

The website also made a Freedom of Information request seeking any correspondence between the university and the Crowder family be turned over, but writes that UT “administrators said any sort of letter or correspondence that may or may not have happened was covered under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act.”

Monday, Jones labeled what began as message-board speculation that he had struck one of his Vols players as “absolutely ridiculous.” The Knoxville News Sentinel contacted Crowder’s father, with the paper writing that “he had no comment and did not want to give validation to message boards.”

At least publicly, the university has yet to address the allegations.  Jones will get yet another chance to address the speculation with the media in the very near future.