Photo by Tyler Smith/Getty Images

40 of college football’s top assistants recognized by Broyles Award

2 Comments

The Broyles Award announced the 40 assistant coaches to be up for consideration for this year’s award. The award honors the top assistant coach in college football and was first awarded in 1996. Over the years, a number of Broyles Award winners have gone on to become head coaches, including Duke head coach David Cutcliffe, Georgia head coach Kirby Smart, UConn head coach Bob Diaco, Pittsburgh head coach Pat Narduzzi and Houston head coach Tom Herman. Will any of this year’s nominees go on to be a head coach soon? There are certainly some names worth considering for some jobs.

Some top names on this year’s Broyles Award list of nominees includes Clemson defensive coordinatorBrent Venables, LSU defensive coordinator Dave Aranda, Michigan defensive coordinator Don Brown and Colorado defensive cooridnator Jim Leavitt. There are a few offensive coordinators on the list as well, including Penn State’s Joe Moorehead and Pittsburgh’s Matt Canada, but defensive coordinators seem to be the story of the year for the Broyles Award.

low is the full list of nominees for this year’s Broyles Award:

  • Alabama – Jeremy Pruitt, Defensive Coordinator/Linebackers
  • Arkansas State – Joe Cauthen, Defensive Coordinator/Linebackers
  • Army West Point – Jay Bateman, Defensive Coordinator
  • Auburn – Kevin Steele, Defensive Coordinator
  • Boise State – Scott Huff, Co-Offensive Coordinator/Offensive
  • Washington State – Alex Grinch, Defensive Coordinator/Secondary
  • Brigham Young – Ed Lamb, Special Team Coordinator/Safeties
  • Clemson – Brent Venables, Defensive Coordinator/Linebackers
  • Colorado – Jim Leavitt, Defensive Coordinator/Linebackers
  • Colorado State – Will Friend, Offensive Coordinator/Offensive Line
  • Georgia Southern – Chad Lunsford, Special Teams Coordinator/Tight Ends
  • Houston – Todd Orlando – Defensive Coordinator
  • Indiana – Tom Allen, Defensive Coordinator
  • Iowa State – Tom Manning, Offensive Coordinator/Offensive Line
  • Louisiana Tech – Todd Fitch, Offensive Coordinator/Wide Receivers
  • LSU – Dave Aranda, Defensive Coordinator
  • Miami – Manny Diaz, Defensive Coordinator/Linebackers
  • Michigan – Don Brown, Defensive Coordinator/Linebackers
  • Missouri – Glen Elarbee, Offensive Line
  • Navy – Ivan Jasper, Offensive Coordinator/Quarterbacks
  • Nebraska – Trent Bray, Linebackers
  • North Carolina – Larry Porter, Special Teams Coordinator/Running Backs
  • North Carolina State – Ryan Nielsen, Defensive Line
  • Oklahoma State – Mike Yurcich, Coordinator/Quarterbacks
  • Old Dominion – Brian Scott, Offensive Coordinator
  • Ole Miss – Matt Luke, Co-Offensive Coordinator/Offensive Line
  • Ohio State – Kerry Coombs, Special Teams Coordinator/Cornerbacks
  • Penn State – Joe Moorhead, Offensive Coordinator/Quarterbacks
  • Pittsburgh – Matt Canada, Offensive Coordinator/Quarterbacks
  • South Carolina – Travaris Robinson, Defensive Coordinator/Defensive Backs
  • Stanford – Mike Bloomgren, Offensive Coordinator/Offensive Line
  • Temple – Phil Snow, Defensive Coordinator/Safeties
  • Troy – Matt Moore, Co-Offensive Coordinator
  • UCF – Erik Chinander, Defensive Coordinator
  • USC – Clancy Pendergast, Defensive Coordinator
  • Wake Forest – Mike Elko, Defensive Coordinator/Safeties
  • Western Kentucky – Tony Levine, Co-Offensive Coordinator/Special Teams Coordinator
  • Western Michigan – Kirk Ciarrocca, Offensive Coordinator/Quarterbacks
  • West Virginia – Tony Gibson, Defensive Coordinator/Linebackers
  • Wisconsin – Justin Wilcox, Defensive Coordinator/Linebackers

Oklahoma’s Lincoln Riley was named the Broyles Award winner in 2015.

Tennessee frosh All-American OL Trey Smith out indefinitely with ‘medical issue’

Getty Images
Leave a comment

A potentially serious issue has arisen at Tennessee as starting offensive lineman Trey Smith is out indefinitely with a “medical issue.” While the nature of the issue was not disclosed, Smith will miss at least the the first portion of spring practice, but his absence could linger much longer than just spring ball.

Smith is reportedly seeking further medical evaluations. Wes Rucker of GoVols247 reported there is no timetable for Smith’s return, but VolQuest, citing sources close to Smith, reported he is expected to return in time for the 2018 season.

One of the lone bright spots in Butch Jones‘s final season, Smith, a 5-star recruit from Jackson, Tenn., became the first Tennessee true freshman to start at left tackle in over 30 years. Smith was a Day 1 starter for the Vols, starting at right guard for a season-opening win over Georgia Tech.

He led the club with 41 knockdowns on the year, including eight against Alabama.

He was a consensus Freshman All-American in 2017 and was rated by PFF College as the No. 1 offensive linemen among all freshmen and the No. 7 overall freshman in 2017.

Former Arizona State DB Robbie Robinson arrested for ‘terroristic threat’

Getty Images
3 Comments

Former Stanford and Miami Dolphins offensive lineman Jonathan Martin was detained and questioned by authorities on Friday after a social media post contained a vague threat to a school shooting, but that wasn’t the only such incident involving a former football player and a possible school shooting to emerge on Friday.

Former Arizona State defensive back Edward “Robbie” Robinson was arrested Friday night after making “terroristic threats” against students and staff at ASU after a social media account purporting to be his said he was trying to buy a gun to “spray the stadium up.”

Here is the tweet in question.

In another post, Robinson’s account posted a screenshot of a text message exchange with someone claiming to be an Arizona State police detective saying, “You’re not in trouble. We just want to talk to you.”

ASU police notified the campus after receiving word of “threats of violence against members of the Sun Devil athletics community,” according to the Arizona Republic.

Robinson (left, No. 6) was a 3-star recruit out of DeMatha Catholic High School in Hampton, Va., who signed with the Sun Devils as part of their 2016 class. He has not been enrolled in school for more than a year, according to the Republic.

Bond for Robinson was set at $50,000, and a GoFundMe account had raised just over $1,500 toward that number at press time. However, Robinson was still tweeting as of Saturday evening.

 

Former Michigan WR Drake Harris announces transfer to Western Michigan

Getty Images
Leave a comment

Michigan wideout Drake Harris announced  in November he’s leaving Ann Arbor for his final season of college football. On Saturday, we learned Harris is heading west. But not that far west.

Harris revealed in an Instagram post he will enroll at Western Michigan as a graduate transfer, allowing him to play immediately for the Broncos. “I’m happy to announce that I will be playing my last year of eligibility at Western Michigan University, while pursuing a masters degree. Excited to get working with Coach Lester and the rest of the coaching staff for a great year next season. Go Broncos,” he wrote.

Harris was one of the prized members of Brady Hoke‘s final recruiting class, but never found his footing as a Wolverine. In 25 career games, Harris caught nine passes for 60 yards.

He’ll join a receiving corps that returns intact but could use help. Western Michigan returns all eight wide receivers who caught a pass in 2017, but none of them snagged more than 30 receptions. WMU ranked 111th in completions and 116th in passing en route to a 6-6 finish in Tim Lester‘s first season as head coach.

Harris will face Syracuse in his first game as a Bronco — Aug. 31 in Kalamazoo — before returning to a familiar place for Game No. 2. Western Michigan visits the Big House on Sept. 8.

Jimbo Fisher vows to change culture at Texas A&M

Getty Images
10 Comments

If there was one thing that really seemed to put Kevin Sumlin on the hot seat during his time at Texas A&M, it was the Aggies seemingly annual collapse in the second half of the season and inability to finish games they had the potential to win. That explains some of the reason why the school ponied up to lure Jimbo Fisher from Florida State in a $75 million hire late last year.

While most of the outside focus on Fisher’s move to College Station has been centered on that humongous contract, there’s little question that hiring a national title-winning coach was a coup for the team. That subject was brought up again on the SEC Network’s Paul Finebaum Show Friday evening and ESPN college football analyst Booger McFarland relayed a rather interesting conversation he had with the coach earlier this year in which Fisher said something you typically don’t hear made public. You can head to the 8:18 mark (or there abouts) for the interview.

“I talked to Jimbo in Atlanta. I told Jimbo point-blank — the same thing I told you guys about Texas A&M the last several years — A&M is a soft program,” McFarland said. “Jimbo looked me in the eye and was like, ‘You know what, you’re damn right. We are soft, but I’m going to change that.’”

Something says that Fisher and the Aggies strength coaches are going to use the comments as a bit of a challenge in the weight room and during spring practice over the coming months as they lay the groundwork for the 2018 season. Even the most ardent maroon and white supporters would probably agree with the sentiment that the team went a little soft toward the end of Sumlin’s tenure but it’s not everyday you see a coach call out his new program quite like that.

Maybe it’s something in the water down there in College Station though, judging by some other comments by the school’s athletic director, but one thing is for certain — things are going to be very different at Texas A&M going forward.