Colorado has a new defensive coordinator, but that means Kentucky is now shopping the market. DJ Eliot will leave his job as defensive coordinator at Kentucky to take on the same role at Colorado. The news was first reported by FootballScoop.com and The Courier-Journal has followed that initial report with confirmation.
Eliot has ben Kentucky’s defensive cooridnator for the past four seasons and leaves Mark Stoops in need of hiring a new coordinator after years having Eliot working with him. It remains to be seen where Kentucky will look for their new defensive coordinator, but it is worth noting that two current assistants — defensive backs coach Steve Clinkscale and linebackers coach and special teams coordinator Matt House — have prior defensive coordinator experience.
Colorado had a vacancy to fill at defensive coordinator after losing Jim Leavitt after two seasons to Oregon to be a part of the new staff working under Willie Taggart.
The Pac-12 announced its 2017 schedule on Wednesday, beginning with a New Mexico State-Arizona State/North Dakota-Utah double-header and ending with the conference title game, once again set for Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif., on the first weekend of December.
The headliner is USC, the league’s presumed champion and best shot at snapping its 12-year streak without a national title, playing 12 consecutive games without a bye week. The Trojans open with home games against Western Michigan, Stanford and Texas, and play straight through their Nov. 18 finale against UCLA at the LA Coliseum.
Speaking of UCLA road games, the Bruins have a lot of them — and they’re all tough. They’ll go on the road to face Memphis, Stanford, Arizona, Washington and Utah (over a 6-day stretch) before their finale at USC. The Bruins also host Texas A&M and Oregon.
Washington’s title defense will begin with a trip to Colorado (after another pillow-soft non-conference schedule of Rutgers, Montana and Fresno State) along with a key stretch that requires a home game with Oregon followed by a trip to Stanford six days later.
For the full schedule, click here.
Dabo Swinney vanquished Bear Bryant‘s former team in the national championship game earlier in the week. Last night, the Clemson head coach claimed an award named in the legend’s honor. Again.
At a ceremony Wednesday, Swinney was named as the 2016 recipient of the Paul “Bear” Bryant Coach of the Year award. Swinney won the award last year, and is the first in its history to win it in back-to-back seasons.
The former Alabama walk-on becomes just the second two-time winner, joining Boise State’s Chris Petersen (2006, 2009).
Monday night, Swinney guided the Tigers to its first national championship in more than three decades.
Swinney and his counterpart on the opposing sideline, Nick Saban, were two of the nine finalists for the award. The other seven included Paul Chryst (Wisconsin), P.J. Fleck (Western Michigan), James Franklin (Penn State), Clay Helton (USC), Dana Holgorsen (West Virginia), Mike MacIntyre (Colorado) and Bob Stoops (Oklahoma).
Colorado has suspended safeties coach Joe Tumpkin while police open an investigation into an alleged domestic violence incident involving the Colorado coach and his ex-girlfriend, according to a Daily Camera report on Tuesday. Tumpkin has been suspended indefinitely with pay while the investigation unfolds.
According to the report, Tumpkin’s ex-girlfriend had a restraining order placed on Tumpkin last month and claims she was physically assaulted on multiple occasions during a relationship of three years. A hearing will be held at the end of January to determine if the restraining order will be made permanent.
The woman claims Tumpkin assaulted her on February 27, 2015 at a hotel in Broomfield, Colorado, claiming Tumpkin “threw her against a wall and then threw her on the bed when she tried to leave.” She later claimed other instances later in 2015 involved her allegedly being choked and bitten by Tumpkin after the two had moved in together. The woman also claims Tumpkin made death threats targeted at other men she showed any interest in. The most recent incident reported came last November prior to Colorado’s late-season game against Washington State when Tumpkin allegedly pushed his finger in the woman’s face and choked her against a wall and later dragged her by the hair the night after Colorado’s win against the Cougars.
What this means for Tumpkin’s future at Colorado is unknown for sure, but it comes at a time when he is being considered for being the program’s new defensive coordinator following the departure of Jim Leavitt for Oregon. Colorado can wait until the legal process plays out to make a decision on Tumpkin if he is the best option, but considering the assistant coaching carousel is now in full swing, it also stands to reason why Colorado may not want to wait very long to make a decision for the staff. That could hurt Tumpkin’s chances to be the defensive coordinator even if he was considered a strong candidate for the job. But, for now, that is nothing but pure speculation.
Alabama may have seen their dynasty temporarily derailed Monday night in Florida, but at least one wagering establishment expects Nick Saban to get it back on track post-haste.
Bovada.lv released its opening set of 2017 national championship odds very early Tuesday afternoon, with the bookmaker installing Bama as a 4/1 favorite coming off the loss to Clemson. Last year at this time, coming off their fourth title in seven years, the same book had the Crimson Tide as a 7/1 favorite.
The team ‘Bama beat, Clemson, is at 16/1, tied with ACC Atlantic rival Louisville and behind six other teams besides the one they beat on the field last night — Florida State (7/1), Ohio State (15/2), Michigan (9/1), Oklahoma (9/1), USC (9/1) and LSU (12/1). The other 2016 playoff team, Washington, is at 40/1, the same as 4-8 Notre Dame and behind the likes of Texas (28/1) and Miami (33/1).
Boise State, at 75/1, was the highest favorite amongst Group of Five programs.
Below are the complete list of 2018 title odds for the championship following the 2017 season, again courtesy on Bovada.lv: