The terse version of the Nicktator has made an appearance in front of the media. Again.
Given how he finished off Alabama’s win over Georgia in last year’s national championship game, and how much further advanced he already is in the passing game than the incumbent, it’s long been thought that Tua Tagovailoa had the edge in claiming the starting quarterback job over two-year starter Jalen Hurts. However, an injury to the index finger on his left (throwing) hand the first day of spring practice led to surgery that has somewhat stilted the competition.
Following the first scrimmage of the spring Saturday, Nick Saban was asked how much Tagovailoa’s injury will play into the timeline for making a decision on a starter. In a stunning development, however, the normally jovial-with-the-media head coach turned testy in his response to the question.
First of all, I don’t have a time frame. So how could it affect it? You have a time frame. I don’t. So from your perspective, maybe I should ask you the question. From my perspective, if there is no time frame, how does it affect it? I can’t answer that. But I don’t think any time a player gets hurt at any position that he should be penalized for that.
That being said, it’s widely been assumed, even prior to Tagovailoa’s injury, that a decision on a starter wouldn’t be made in the spring and would instead be decided at some point during summer camp. Alabama, incidentally, opens the defense of its national championship against the Lamar Jackson-less Louisville Cardinals in Orlando Sept. 1.
A relationship that’s was wobbly as recently as last year has been further solidified thanks to today’s development.
Wednesday, it was reported that the ACC would be announcing future venues — or venue, singular — for its football championship game. A day later, the league confirmed, as expected, that its title game will remain in Charlotte for the foreseeable future.
The new agreement will keep the game at Charlotte’s Bank of America Stadium through the 2030 season. The city was already set to host the game in 2018, 2019 and 2020.
“Charlotte has been a tremendous home for the Dr Pepper ACC Football Championship Game and we’re pleased to announce the Queen City as our championship destination through 2030,” said conference commissioner John Swofford in a statement. “With the outstanding efforts by the Charlotte Sports Foundation, Carolina Panthers and city of Charlotte, our game has grown into one of the premier sporting events in the country. We look forward every year to this annual celebration of ACC Football.”
Charlotte had played host to the ACC football championship game every year since 2010 before a controversial bill resulted in the conference yanking the 2016 game from the city and moving it to Orlando. In 2017, the game was moved back to Charlotte.
Prior to 2010, the first three league title tilts were played in Jacksonville (2005-07) and the next two in Tampa (2008-09).
Colorado State is busy adding depth to the roster by utilizing graduate transfers from power conference programs. The newest addition is offensive lineman T.J. Roundtree, a graduate transfer from Louisville. The Rams announced the addition of Roundtree to the program on Friday.
As a graduate transfer, Roundtree will be eligible to play for the Mountain West Conference contenders this fall. Having Roundtree on the roster should help plug some holes on the offensive line after losing three starters from last year’s team. Roundtree could also potentially be protecting another graduate transfer addition to the program, quarterback K.J. Carta-Samuels. Carta-Samuels was formally added to the program earlier in the week after transferring to Fort Collins from Washington.
Roundtree played in five games for Louisville last season and all 13 games in the 2016 season. At 6′-5″ and 315 lb, he should add some weight to a Colorado State offensive line that is already pretty stacked in size, making for a formidable offensive line unit in the MWC.
Louisville’s interim AD is now going to be its permanent AD. The Cardinals announced Monday that Vince Tyra has signed a 5-year contract to remain as the school’s full-time athletics director.
“We are convinced that Vince Tyra is the right fit to lead the UofL athletics program,” said Louisville president Greg Postel, himself an interim. “He has provided strong leadership while continuing to move the Cardinals forward in all sports, building upon the legacy of previous athletics successes and taking the time to personally reach out to the UofL fan base and donors as much as possible. The feedback we received from donors, community members, employees, athletes, the ACC and colleagues throughout the country has been extremely positive.”
Tyra has been Louisville’s AD since Oct. 3, after longtime AD Tom Jurich was pushed out due to revelations from the ongoing FBI investigation into college basketball. Tyra will be just Louisville’s third AD since 1980; Bill Olsen held the job from 1980-97 and Jurich from 1997 to ’17.
“It’s an honor to take the reins of such an outstanding athletics program with its rich tradition of success,” Tyra said. “I look forward to continuing to work with our coaches and staff to put an outstanding product on the field while ensuring the success of our student athletes and representing UofL in a manner that will make the entire university family proud.”
Prior to Louisville, Tyra worked in the private equity industry in Greenwich, Conn. A Louisville native, Tyra is the son of former Cardinals basketball player Charlie Tyra and a former pitcher at Kentucky.
The ACC and the American have struck a deal for a football officiating alliance, the American announced Monday. The new program will see the two conferences cooperate on all things officiating, from training to scheduling to evaluation.
With the move, the ACC’s Dennis Hennigan will oversee the alliance, while the American’s Terry McAulay will step down as the league’s coordinator of football officiating and the American will hire a new supervisor of football officials.
“We are excited to partner with the ACC regarding the administration of our football officiating program,” AAC commissioner Mike Aresco said in a statement. “This alliance will provide both conferences with a deep roster of the best college football officials and will provide for greater efficiency and consistency in the training and evaluation of officials as well as enhanced opportunities for the recruitment of officials. We look forward to working with Dennis Hennigan, who was regarded as one of the top on-field officials in college football and has since become a leader on the administrative side. I also want to thank Commissioner John Swofford for his cooperation in reaching this mutually beneficial arrangement.”
The new alliance means ACC officials could oversee a Tulane-Tulsa game, while AAC officials would work a Clemson-Georgia Tech game. The ACC-AAC Alliance will go into effect for the 2018 season.