I think this may bring a merciful end to this particular story arc. Maybe. Hopefully?
A video on social media emerged over the weekend of former Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson, the engineer of the last-second win over Alabama in the national championship game earlier this year, being unceremoniously kicked out of a bar in Tuscaloosa. Reportedly, former Alabama linebacker Ryan Anderson, who played in the Tide’s death-in-the-family loss to the Tigers, and another ex-UA player, Wallace Gillberry, were among the individuals not-so-politely urging Watson and his girlfriend to exit the drinking establishment last Friday night.
Earlier this week, Anderson’s publicist claimed that his client approached Watson to suggest he leave “before the patrons escalated the situation.” Anderson even reportedly offered to pay Watson’s tab.
Wednesday, Anderson, a 2017 NFL draft prospect, offered further clarity to the situation, at least from his point of view. From al.com:
It was blown out of proportion. I didn’t ask him to leave,” Anderson said. ‘I simply made a suggestion. I told him it wasn’t smart for him to be there and if he had finished eating, he should get up out of there. That’s all it was.”
Anderson said Watson understood the suggestion — “He didn’t take it the wrong way” — and quietly left the popular Tuscaloosa bar. In another video posted of the incident, a female customer is overheard saying the situation was “sad” as fans confronted a seated Watson.
Anderson and Watson later texted and talked on the phone Saturday to make sure there were no lingering issues about the encounter.
“I just let him know what I was trying to do,” Anderson said of their Saturday conversation. “I was trying to help him.
So, in summation, a handful of Crimson Tide fans were acting like Neanderthal degenerates still butt-hurt over the title-game loss and felt the need to show their asses to the player largely responsible for costing them another championship. A former Crimson Tide football player then helped defuse the situation and prevented it from escalating.
Pretty much the end of the story, right?
The Texas Longhorns are a program many are expecting to see take a step forward in the first year with new head coach Tom Herman at the helm, but the Longhorns saw the depth on the offensive line just take a hit on Tuesday. Jean Delance, a former four-star recruit of the Longhorns, has announced via Twitter he is departing the program and has already been granted a release from his scholarship.
Reports out of Austin have suggested Delance was being moved around the offensive line with others competing for a spot on the line. Beyond looking for a fresh start, as Delance explains in his shared statement, the other factors leading to his decision have not been shared.
As for that fresh start, Delance will have to sit out the entire 2017 season if he transfers to another FBS program according to NCAA transfer rules. He would be ruled eligible to play this fall, however, if he transfers to a football program at the FCS level or below.
The Longhorns are already dealing with some offensive line concerns ahead of the start of the 2017 season. Elijah Rodriguez , a projected starter according to My San Antonio, will be missing some time due to an ankle issue that continues to linger.
Colorado and Northwestern have lined up a future home-and-home series for those planning ahead. The two schools announced a home-and-home series that will be played in 2025 and 2026, with each game being played on home campuses. None of that neutral field nonsense here!
Northwestern of the Big Ten will host Colorado of the Pac-12 on September 19, 2026. The Wildcats will make the trip to Boulder, Colorado the following season on September 11, 2027. The two schools have faced each other twice before, with Northwestern securing a 35-11 victory in 1951 and Colorado blowing out the Wildcats by a score of 55-7 in 1978. Each team won a game on their home field.
“This will be a great series for several reasons,” Colorado athletic director Rick George said in a released statement. “Not only is it a quality match-up between two great academic and Pac-12 and Big Ten institutions, it’s important for us to get to that part of the country and the Chicago area for our alumni we have there.”
You may remember a few years back, before the Big Ten expanded to 14 members and both conferences had 12 members, the Pac-12 backed out of an arrangement for a full conference vs. conference scheduling agreement with the Big Ten. That would have been fun to watch, similar to the various conference vs. conference series in college basketball, so any time we can get a Big Ten and Pac-12 team on the same field is to be praised.
As a Big Ten member, Northwestern is required to schedule one game per season against another power conference opponent. Northwestern has the power conference scheduling commitment fulfilled in 2017 with Duke, 2018 (Duke, Notre Dame), 2019 (at Stanford), 2021 (at Duke), 2022 (Duke), 2023 (at Duke), 2024 (Duke), 2026 (Colorado), and now in 2027 (at Colorado).
The Pac-12 has no similar scheduling requirement for Colorado.
Arkansas just signed up for a new 10-year multimedia rights deal with IMG College for a whopping $137 million, and the fans attending Razorback games are expected to reap the benefits in the future.
According to a report from Sports Business Journal, the new multimedia rights deal with IMG College — which handles multimedia rights distribution for all Arkansas sports coverage on TV and radio — will help Arkansas fund a stadium-wide networking upgrade to a handful of Arkansas athletics venues, including Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium. The upgrades will focus updating the wi-fi reception to allow for better connectivity for fans using their phones while attending games.
Now, if you are an Arkansas fan and feel as though you have heard about wireless upgrades before, that’s because you have. Arkansas announced plans to upgrade the wireless network status inside the stadium in 2014 as well. But anything upgraded in 2014 is already out of date by 2017 standards. It’s the same for mobile devices as it is the computer I am typing this one. Staying ahead of the curve in areas like this can be difficult, if not costly.
But with a brand spanking new multi media rights deal bringing in a dump truck of cash for Arkansas, the funds will be there to provide for the cost of upgrading the network inside the football stadium. So bring your phone, and your iPad, and whatever else you want to hook up to the network when you attend an Arkansas game. You might get improved service.
TCU defensive lineman Isaiah Chambers is leaving Fort Worth in order to stay closer to his family in a time of need. In a statement share don his Twitter profile on Monday, Chambers said his aunt (his legal guardian) is currently sick and not doing well.
Chambers was a four-star prospect out of Houston. It is unknown at this time what program Chambers will be moving to next. If he transfers to another FBS program, Chambers would need a family hardship waiver from the NCAA to play football this fall. Otherwise, Chambers will be required to sit out the 2017 season due to NCAA transfer rules. He can play this season if he lands at a lower division program in the FCS or below. For now, football is not the primary focus for Chambers, and given his family history, it goes without saying nobody will be faulting him for this decision in any way.
From a football perspective, the loss of Chambers is a setback for the depth at TCU on the defensive line. Any time a four-star talent and one of the top recruits from the state leaves the program for whatever reason, it is a concern for the roster. How TCU head coach Gary Patterson works his defensive line will be something to watch as the 2017 season quickly approaches at this point.
Helmet sticker to Land Grant Gauntlet.