Getty Images

Les Miles returning to Death Valley as LSU honors 2007 title team

6 Comments

The Mad Hatter is coming back, although not in the way that many an LSU fan would like.

This year marks the 10th anniversary of LSU’s 2007 national championship team coached by Les Miles.  And, as he indicated earlier in the week, Miles be part of the 70-plus-person contingent who will be at Tiger Stadium to celebrate the school’s title.

That team will be honored on the field at halftime of the Auburn game Saturday afternoon, the school confirmed in a press release Thursday.  In addition to Miles, all five captains from that season — defensive tackle Glenn Dorsey, punter Patrick Fisher, quarterback Matt Flynn, running back Jacob Hester, safety Craig Steltz – will all be in attendance as well.

LSU claimed its third national title in the program’s history thanks to a 38-24 win over Ohio State in the BCS championship game in New Orleans.  Less than 10 years later, Miles was fired a third of the way through the 2016 season after the team struggled to a 2-2 start.

Miles’ replacement, his former defensive line coach Ed Orgeron, has LSU off to a 4-2 start in his first full season in Baton Rouge.

Below is the complete list of players who are expected to take part in this weekend’s festivities:

Charles Alexander (DT)
Rahim Alem (DL)
Matt Allen (OL)
Ryan Anders (PK)
Caleb Angelle (PK)
Will Arnold (OL)
Darry Beckwith (LB)
Will Blackwell (OL)
Jeremy Bunting (WR)
Donnie Chaucer (DB)
Mit Cole (TE)
Jacob Cutrera (LB)
Joey Crappell (SNP)
Andrew Crutchfield (PK)
Brady Dalfrey (P)
Colt Davis (PK)
Andrew Decker (OL)
Richard Dickson (TE)
Ricky Dixon (WR)
Early Doucet (WR)
Glenn Dorsey (DT)
Richard Dugas (C)
Josh Dworaczyk (OL)
Jai Eugene (DB)
Marlon Favorite (DT)
Patrick Fisher (P)
Matt Flynn (QB)
Ace Foyil (LB)
Stefoin Francois (LB)
Sean Gaudet (PK)
Daniel Graff (DB)
Josh Graham (DB)
Orlando Gunn (DB)
Donald Hains (DL)
Andrew Hatch (QB)
T-Bob Hebert (OL)
Trent Hebert (PK)
Brett Helms (OL)
Trey Helms (OL)
Jacob Hester (RB)
Lyle Hitt (OL)
Trindon Holliday (RB/RS)
Tyson Jackson (DE)
Josh Jasper (PK)
Herman Johnson (OL)
Quinn Johnson (FB)
Tremaine Johnson (DL)
Chad Jones (DB)
Mitch Joseph (TE)
Brandon LaFell (WR)
Pep Levingston (DE)
Cole Louviere (OL)
Joe Maltempi (DB)
Josh McManus (WR)
Ryan Miller (OL)
Chris Mitchell (WR)
Chad Moody (DB)
Richard Murphy (RB)
Ryan Perrilloux (QB)
Kirston Pittman (DE)
Stevan Ridley (RB)
Luke Sanders (LB)
Charles Scott (RB)
Robert Smith (OL)
Mark Snyder (OL)
Craig Steltz (S)
Curtis Taylor (S)
Terrance Toliver (WR)
Jimmy Welker (QB)
Keith Zinger (TE)

Florida’s statement on Jim McElwain’s death-threat claim is interesting, to say the least

Getty Images
5 Comments

Maybe it’s nothing, maybe it’s something.  Regardless, it’s something that bears watching.

Losers of two in a row and off to a 3-3 start to the season,  Florida has underperformed and underwhelmed to say the least.  So much so, in fact, that head coach Jim McElwain indicated Monday that he, his family, his coaching staff and players have been subjected to death threats by unknown individuals.

The head coach went into no detail publicly regarding the nature of the threats.  Apparently, it was the same privately when discussing the situation with his employer.

OK then.

Again, it could be in the same neighborhood as naked shark humping — nothing. Bears watching, though, as one very outspoken member of the Florida media is very much already doing publicly about a situation that was apparently reported to the media before it was reported to the police or even the university.

LOOK: Arizona State to wear Pat Tillman-themed uniforms

Associated Press
4 Comments

Pat Tillman is essentially the Knute Rockne of Arizona State football, the central figure that will be as important to the program 100 years from now as he is today. And while Notre Dame will wear Rockne-themed uniforms later this season, so, too, will Arizona State.

The program revealed Tillman-centric uniforms on Monday for their Nov. 4 game with Colorado, based on the uniform Tillman wore as a member of the U.S. Army while fighting in Afghanistan.

Tillman played linebacker at Arizona State from 1994-97 (he was named the Pac-10’s Defensive Player of the Year as a senior) and then spent four seasons with the Arizona Cardinals before the events of 9/11 inspired him to join the U.S. Army. He was a member of the Army Rangers before he was killed in action in Afghanistan on April 22, 2004, at age 27.

Arizona State unveiled a Tillman statue at Sun Devil Stadium at its season-opening win over New Mexico State.

“Pat spent his whole life trying to be the best person he could possibly be,” Kevin Tillman, Pat’s brother, said at the unveiling. “He didn’t focus on money, he didn’t focus on fame, he didn’t focus on a pretty statue. It was, ‘How can I make myself a better person in all these different facets of my life?’ And ASU gave him an opportunity to do that.”

Jim McElwain says family, players have received death threats over 3-3 start

Getty Images
15 Comments

Florida has lost two in a row and is off to a 3-3 start, and that streak will probably reach three on Saturday after the Gators meet No. 3 Georgia. While everyone knows SEC fans are passionate about their football, some have taken Florida’s struggles too far.

How far? By threatening to kill the players and coaches.

“I think it’s a pretty good lesson for the way things are,” head coach Jim McElwain said, via Only Gators. “There’s a lot of hate in this world and a lot of anger. And yet, it’s freedom to show it. The hard part is, obviously, when it’s threats against your own players, death threats to your families, the ill will that’s brought upon out there. And yet, I think it’s really one of those deals that really is a pretty good testament to what’s going on out there nationally. There’s a lot of angry people, and in this business, we’re the ones you take the shots at. And that’s the way it is.”

In my experience, it seems people lodging death threats are far more serious about the threat part than the, uh, other. But that’s easy for me to say, I’ve never received one.

Report: Sam Darnold expected to return to USC in 2018

Getty Images
7 Comments

Sam Darnold was appointed the No. 1 pick of the 2018 NFL Draft on the second day of 2017. As a redshirt freshman, Darnold torched Penn State to the tune of 33-of-53 passing for 453 yards with five touchdowns and one interception in a 52-49 Rose Bowl win.

One problem, though. Darnold hasn’t played like a No. 1 pick this season.

While he hasn’t been the most disappointing player on what’s turning out to be a disappointing USC team, Darnold has posted pedestrian numbers (for him): hitting 63.5 percent of his passes for an even eight yards per attempt with 17 touchdowns against 10 interceptions. He ranks 38th nationally in passing efficiency. This puts him, coincidentally, one spot ahead of former USC quarterback Max Browne.

On Monday, NFL Draft analyst Benjamin Allbright shared a report that Darnold is expected to return to USC next season.

Considering Ronald Jones could return next season and that Stephen Carr is just a freshman, the prospect of Darnold returning in 2018 has to take the sting out of a lost 2017 for Trojans fans.