Getty Images

Gary Patterson regrets ripping Big 12 officials, says ‘it’s hard to be an officiating crew any more’

2 Comments

In the heat of the moment following the loss to Oklahoma Saturday, Gary Patterson lit into the officiating.  A couple of days later, the TCU head coach is attempting to cram the toothpaste back into the tube.

Patterson ripped officials for a critical intentional grounding penalty on his quarterback, Kenny Hill, that originally wasn’t called but ultimately flagged after the crew spoke to OU head coach Bob Stoops.  The Horned Frogs coach also lamented numerous holds by the Sooners that weren’t called.

“Bottom line to it is, I wasn’t happy with the officiating,” Patterson, who also took a shot at OU quarterback Baker Mayfield, said at the time.

Tuesday, Patterson acknowledged that he regretted saying the things he did following the game.  While he stopped short of a full-blown apology, Patterson’s public regrets, the coach stated, were his own and (winkwinknudgenudge) he wasn’t pushed into backing off the criticisms.

From ESPN.com:

When it came to officials, Baker, anything, the bottom line to it is you have to be bigger than all of it,” Patterson said. “You have passion. I think in my 19 seasons here I can count on two hands, maybe six times that I’ve said things that usually by the next day I’ve regretted. After that, by the time I got to my radio show [I regretted it]. That’s a good officiating crew. This game goes really fast. It’s hard to be an officiating crew any more.”

“I have a high respect for Bob Stoops and the University of Oklahoma, [athletic director] Joe [Castiglione],” Patterson said. “Bob’s a really good friend and I wish them the best. The bottom line is it’s been great football games. So in this day and age right now in our horizon, everybody throws things out, everybody thinks they can say whatever they want to. The biggest thing for me is I don’t want to be part of that. You go down and come back from 20 something points and you have some suspect things going on, but the bottom line is I’ve had some of those things go my way. You stay in this profession long enough you’re going to have some things that are going to be good for you and some things that aren’t.”

Patterson ended by saying, “From a football coach, that’s probably the closest to an apology as you’ll ever get, probably.

The loss to the Sooners was the Horned Frogs’ first in Big 12 play.

Illinois boots three players charged with home invasion and robbery

Photo by Steven Branscombe/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Illinois head coach Lovie Smith has dismissed three players charged with home invasion and robbery. Offensive linemen Darta Lee and Howard Watkins and tight end Zarrian Holcombe have all been dismissed from the program, according to a statement.

Lee and Holcombe were previously suspended by Smith for violations of team rules. Watkins had also been indefinitely suspended following the initial allegations. All three players claimed the incident that led to the charges was nothing more than an innocent prank, but the authorities and Smith didn’t seem willing to buy that claim.

Each player faces a mandatory prison sentence of 4-15 years on each count against them if found guilty.

Report: Conference USA to air at least 15 football games on Twitter in 2017

1 Comment

Conference USA is in a position where it needs to think outside the box and look to stay ahead of the curve in a changing TV landscape. It appears to be ready to air games on Twitter in 2017.

A report from The Virginian-Pilot says broadcast company STADIUM will air at least 15 football games involving Conference USA teams this fall. STADIUM is the result of a recent merger between the American Sports Network, 120 Sports and Silver Chalice (which also owns Campus Insiders and the online ACC Digital Network). The ASN had owned the broadcast rights to Conference USA games through the end of the 2017-2018 sports season that will carry over to the STADIUM deal (allowing for Conference USA basketball games to be aired on Twitter as well). It was announced earlier this month STADIUM intended to broadcast Conference USA games on Twitter, but it was unknown how many games might make it to the networking service. STADIUM reportedly has an interest in continuing to air Conference USA contests beyond the next athletic season.

Conference USA still has broadcast deals with ESPN and CBS Sports in effect as well, so don’t expect the premiere matchups in the conference to be aired on Twitter. However, by sharing the games online, Conference USA is hoping to reach a wide-spread audience and have the opportunity to be a trending topic. It could work, as Twitter would make sure the game is given a steady feed to allow for a pleasant viewing experience and fan interaction in real time.

Conference USA saw TV revenue take a big hit over the last year. Last summer, Conference USA’s television revenue reportedly dropped to just $2.8 million for the entire conference following realignment changes. Finding a home on a streaming platform now would be key for the conference’s future stability.

Alabama DC Jeremy Pruitt named son after former Tide linebackers Reuben Foster and Ryan Anderson

Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images
1 Comment

It is not at all uncommon for children born in the state of Alabama to be named after Alabama football legends, but it is not every day you see a child of an Alabama coach receives a name inspired by former Alabama football players.

Defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt announced the birth of his new son, Flynt Anderson-Foster Pruitt, on Twitter. Alabama fans will likely already know the connection to the new child’s name, as used the last names of two former Alabama football players to create the middle name of Anderson-Foster; Ryan Anderson and Reuben Foster.

Maybe this is more common than I’m aware of, but regardless of how often a coach names a child after former players, this is a testament to the relationship the Pruitt family established with both former Alabama linebackers. And now there will be a bond for years to come between the coach and his family and Anderson and Foster.

Helmet sticker to Al.com.

Wisconsin’s season tickets for 100th anniversary of Camp Randall are a thing of beauty

Photo by Tom Lynn/Getty Images
2 Comments

The Wisconsin Badgers are gearing up for their 100th season playing home football game sin Camp Randall Stadium. As part of the season-long celebration, Wisconsin put some brilliant artistic detail into their season tickets for the 2017 season.

Each ticket to a home Wisconsin game is designed like a retro-style program. These are beautifully done and mimic the style of a program cover from decades past. I’m particularly fond of the program cover for the Purdue game, which features Wisconsin’s Bucky floating in space with a ship with the Purdue logo nearby. Is that a space train? The Band Day program for the game against Florida Atlantic also looks fantastic.

These tickets will surely be must-have collectibles for Wisconsin fans. If Wisconsin wants to make a few extra bucks, then blowing up these images and selling them as posters may be a good decision as well. And I wouldn’t put it past Wisconsin to suit up in a retro-style uniform for at least home game this season in Madison.