Perhaps the most head-scratching hire of the offseason came at Missouri when Barry Odom hired Derek Dooley to be the Tigers’ new offensive coordinator. It was eyebrow-raising for a number of reasons, starting with the fact that Dooley has never called plays before right down to his unceremonious exit from the SEC following a disastrous tenure at Tennessee.
Just ahead of the team opening fall camp though, it seems Dooley is doing some opening up himself. In an excellent Q&A with the St. Louis Dispatch, the always colorful coach discussed a number of topics like becoming an athletic director to working for Nick Saban to doing a job that he hasn’t done before. Perhaps the most notable parts of the piece are, as one might expect, Dooley reflecting on his time with the Vols however and he does not disappoint in talking about what went wrong in Knoxville.
“The difference was at Louisiana Tech everybody listened to me and did what I said. At Tennessee very few people listened to me and most of them did something different than what I said. That’s how it is at a lot of big places when you don’t come in empowered as “the guy.” you have to learn how to manage those environments,” said Dooley. “That’s what frustrated me. You can’t even compare the two. You had a lot of division going on between (Phil) Fulmer, (Lane) Kiffin and fans. There was a lot of division on campus. It was a different environment, and I didn’t see it that way but should have.”
Dooley did add that his three years at Tennessee were a “humbling” experience and has made him a better coach.
We’ll certainly find out if that’s the case on November 17 when Missouri heads to Tennessee for what could be a pivotal game for both teams in the race for bowl eligibility. Dooley probably won’t get a super warm welcome for his first trip to Knoxville since being fired by the Vols but at least both sides can take any hard feelings out on the field.
Never mind, I guess.
Earlier this month, Derek Green, a member of Oklahoma’s 2019 recruiting class, revealed that he would be pursuing a career in the military instead of a career in college football.
“I don’t want to waste anybody’s time,” Green said at the time, “because Oklahoma has a great group of guys on that defense that’s there and coming in and I want them to be successful and they can spend more time developing them while I try to serve my country.”
Green also confirmed at the time that he would be placing his name into the NCAA transfer database, although “that’s just in case I want to go back to it later, but as of right now I’m going to serve my country.”
Fast-forward a few days, and Green announced via Twitter that he will be putting his military career on hold and transferring to a football program other than the one with which he signed back in December.
Green was a consensus three-star signee for the Sooners who enrolled in classes at the university earlier this month. He was the only signee listed as a defensive tackle in OU’s class this year.
For the third time this offseason, first-year head coach Mike Locksley has pulled in a Power Five transfer to his Maryland program.
On his personal Twitter account Monday night, Josh Jackson announced that he has committed to continuing his collegiate playing career for Locksley at Maryland. Nearly four weeks ago, it was confirmed that Jackson would be leaving Virginia Tech as the quarterback had placed his name into the NCAA transfer database.
As Jackson is expected to graduate from Tech in May, he would be eligible to play for Maryland this coming season. Not only that, but he will have another year of eligibility he can use in College Park in 2020 as well.
After going through a tumultuous offseason, Jackson began 2018 as the Hokies’ starting quarterback only to suffer a season-ending injury in mid-September.
As a redshirt freshman in 2017, Jackson started all 13 games for the 9-4 Hokies. He passed for 2,991 yards and ran for another 324 yards while accounting for 26 touchdowns — 20 passing, six rushing. The passing yards were the most for an FBS freshman that season, while the touchdowns passes were the second-most at this level.
Given the fact that he’ll be immediately eligible, Jackson will head into summer camp as the favorite to lay claim to the Terrapins’ starting job under center.
In addition to Jackson, Maryland has landed transfers from wide receiver Sean Savoy and linebacker Keandre Jones. The former comes to College Park from Virginia Tech, the latter from Ohio State.
Not long after declaring he was looking to transfer, ex-Arizona State linebacker Jalen Bates has found his landing spot. Bates is heading to Colorado State.
On Monday, Bates announced to his Twitter followers he is a Ram. The message was posted with a Photoshopped image showing him in a Colorado State football uniform. Bates started 10 games for Arizona State last season, and he has appeared in 18 games during his college career with the Sun Devils. That’s a nice addition for the Rams.
Having already earned his degree from Arizona State, Bates will be eligible to p[lay right away for the Rams this fall.
Former Oklahoma State offensive tackle Arlington Hambright is ready for his final season of college football. He’ll play it at Colorado, Hambright announced via Twitter.
“I give all glory and praise to God, without him I would be nothing but I will be spending my last year in Boulder, Colorado playing in the Pac-12 under some GREAT coaches and for [an] amazing University,” Hambright announced, via Twitter. “Now let’s get to work!”
Reports of Hambright potentially transferring from Oklahoma State surfaced earlier this month as the player transfer fun has continued to run wild this offseason. While no specific reason for his reason for transferring has been made public, he will certainly be looking to close out his college football career on a high note. An ankle injury brought an early end to Hambright’s 2018 season after starting the first five games of the season. He did return for the Liberty Bowl against Missouri, but Hambright will look to get in a full season as a potential starter in the Pac-12 this fall.