It’s been over three months since former North Carolina head coach Butch Davis was fired over the summer with the NCAA giving the program a notice on allegations of improper benefits received by players and academic misconduct. Now, Davis is breaking his silence for the first time since releasing a statement on his dismissal.
In a nine-minute video which you can watch below, Davis addresses the “situation at North Carolina” and dives into what he feels are inaccuracies about his knowledge of accusations of wrongdoing by former assistant coach John Blake and tutor Jennifer Wiley.
Below are just a couple excerpts from Davis’ video (courtesy of InsideCarolina)
“Let’s talk for a bit about John Blake,” Davis says. “Did I know he had such a close relationship with a sports agent? No. Should I have known? I wish I had known. … After being named head coach at UNC, I presented John’s name, along with several other candidates, for the assistant positions that were open. These names were given to the University administration, and as far as I know, they each underwent and passed background checks. It was my understanding that under UNC policies, all football employees — including myself — need to be cleared by the human resources department for any history that would be relevant to the job. Further, it was also my understanding that the UNC compliance office would contact the NCAA to determine whether a candidate might have a history of violations at any former institution. So, to reiterate, did I know of John’s close relationship with an agent? No. Do I wish I had known? Yes.”
“A lot of have been said about (the tutor issue), almost all of it wrong. Tammy and I came to Miss Jennifer Wiley, the tutor, through the University’s academic support department when we asked for a recommendation for a tutor for our son. The department recommended only one person – Jennifer Wiley – and they did so glowingly. We immediately liked Jennifer, and still do; our son considered her to be like an older sister. From what I understand, the primary allegations against Jennifer arose when the academic support department neglected to tell her that she was absolutely forbidden to help any student athlete once we stopped being a tutor. I did not know about that failure and I wish it had not happened.”
The aftereffects of Hurricane Harvey continue to linger, in this case as it pertains to college football scheduling.
Houston and UT-San Antonio in March of 2016 announced a future four-game series, with two of the games set to be played at the latter’s home (2017, 2023) and two in the former’s (2022, 2024). Because of the once-in-500 years flooding event in the Houston area last August, however, the 2017 game was canceled.
In a press release Thursday, UTSA confirmed that the canceled 2017 game will now be played on Aug. 30, 2025, at TDECU Stadium in Houston. The 2023 game, which had been scheduled to be played in San Antonio, will now be played in Houston.
The 2022 and 2024 games had been scheduled for Houston’s home but will now be played in San Antonio’s Alamodome.
The two football teams have met twice previously, in 2013 and 2014. The road teams won each of those matchups, with the Roadrunners spoiling the opening of UH’s new stadium in the 2014 game.
In April, Fotu Leiato was arrested on a couple of charges related to the illegal removal of a parking boot from his vehicle. A month later, we’ve learned Leiato was given the boot from his current football program for good measure.
247Sports.com was the first to report that Leiato has been dismissed by first-year Oregon head coach Mario Cristobal. Further to the point, the linebacker’s dismissal came a day after his April arrest but the news didn’t surface until Thursday.
In the April incident, Leiato was arrested on charges of second-degree criminal mischief, second-degree theft and criminal trespassing. That was actually his second arrest this year as he was charged with misdemeanor trespassing in January.
The combination of the two arrests led Cristobal to pull the trigger on a dismissal.
Coming to Eugene as a three-star safety, Leiato played in 37 of 38 games the past three seasons. The Washington native earned the first start of his collegiate playing career during the 2017 season.
The senior had been in line to earn a starting job exiting spring and heading into the summer phase of the offseason.
Darren Kirkland‘s injury-plagued time on Rocky Top has come to an end.
On his personal Twitter account Thursday evening, Kirkland announced that he has decided to transfer out of first-year head coach Jeremy Pruitt‘s Tennessee football program. The linebacker gave no specific reason for his decision to move on from the Volunteers.
“Tennessee will always hold a special place in my heart,” Kirkland wrote. “These moments have been priceless and I’m a better player and man from this experience.”
As a graduate transfer, Kirkland would be eligible to play for another FBS program in 2018. Not only that, but he will have two seasons of eligibility remaining counting this year.
A four-star 2015 signee, Kirkland started 10 games as a true freshman and then another six in a sophomore campaign marred by a high-ankle sprain that forced him to miss four games. In summer camp last year, he suffered a knee injury severe enough to sideline him for the entire 2017 season.
The rehab from that injury kept Kirkland from being a full participant in Pruitt’s first spring practice this year.
Seth Littrell has done a great job turning around the program at North Texas but fans getting a look at the 2018 edition of his team will notice something right away that’s different when they take the field for the home opener: new turf. The Denton Record Chronicle reports that UNT is ponying up $625,245 for the latest “FieldTurf CoolPlay” turf at Apogee Stadium.
“We are excited about the turf,” Littrell said recently, according to the paper. “It was much needed. That turf has been used a lot and has gotten worn down. The new field will improve safety and will be a great resource for our kids.”
The old turf had a good run at the stadium after being installed back in 2011 but obviously the summer heat and 300+ pound bodies playing football will cause a little wear and tear. The Record Chronicle says that “North Texas” and “Mean Green” will be the end zones text while the midfield school logo will include a “dark green outline of the state of Texas.”
Completion of the project is expected to be done well in time for the first game against SMU in September. The school has released some shots of Apogee Stadium without the old turf and it certainly looks kind of wild to see a stadium sans a playing field: