Getty Images

First set of playoff rankings to be released Oct. 30

Leave a comment

In yet another sign that a new college football season is getting close to kicking off, the College Football Playoff has released the important dates and protocol for 2018.

The first set of playing rankings, the CFP confirmed, will be released on Tuesday, Oct. 30 from 7-8 p.m. ET.  That initial will be the first of five released before the final CFP rankings that will set the four-team playoff field as well as New Year’s Six Bowls will be unveiled on Sunday, Dec,. 2, starting at noon ET.

Tuesday, October 30, 7-8 p.m. ET
Tuesday, November 6, 9-9:30 p.m. ET*
Tuesday, November 13, 7-8 p.m. ET
Tuesday, November 20, 7-8 p.m. ET
Tuesday, November 27, 7-7:30 p.m. ET
Sunday, December 2, Noon-4 p.m. ET

*Approximate start time will be 9 p.m. for the Champions Classic basketball doubleheader. The rankings will be revealed live between the Michigan State vs. Kansas and Duke vs. Kentucky games.

In January of this year, the CFP announced six new members of the committee that will select the 2018 playoff field:

  • Oklahoma athletic director Joe Castiglione
  • Former journalist/current journalism professor Paola Boivin
  • Former Rice/Clemson/Arkansas/Air Force head coach Ken Hatfield
  • College and NFL Hall of Famer Ronnie Lott
  • Georgia Tech athletic director Todd Stansbury
  • Florida athletic director Scott Stricklin

The six new additions bring the committee back to a dozen voters, including Robert Morris president Christopher B. Howard (term expires in Feb. of 2020), former Virginia Tech head coach Frank Beamer (2020), Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith (2020), former Southern Miss head coach Jeff Bower (2019), former Central Michigan head coach Herb Deromedi (2019) and Oregon athletic director Rob Mullens (2019).

Mullens will serve as the selection committee’s new chairperson.

“We’ve had four very successful seasons and I look forward to a fifth,” said Rob Mullens in a statement. “We’re in good shape heading into this upcoming year.”

In addition to rankings release dates, the CFP also reaffirmed its recusal policy.

The selection committee recusal policy remains consistent with previous years, which states, “A recused member shall not participate in any votes involving the team from which the individual is recused.”

“A recused member is permitted to answer only factual questions about the institution from which the member is recused but shall not be present during any deliberations regarding that team’s selection or seeding. Recused members shall not participate in discussions regarding the placement of the recused team into a bowl game.

“If a committee member or an immediate family member, e.g., spouse, sibling or child, (a) is compensated by a school, (b) provides professional services for a school, or (c) is on the coaching staff or administrative staff at a school or is a football student-athlete at a school, that member will be recused. Such compensation shall include not only direct employment, but also current paid consulting arrangements, deferred compensation (e.g., contract payments continuing after employment has ended) or other benefits. The committee will have the option to add other recusals if special circumstances arise.

Recusals for the 2018-19 season are as follows:

Arizona State – Paola Boivin
Central Michigan – Herb Deromedi
Florida – Scott Stricklin
Georgia Tech – Todd Stansbury
Ohio State – Gene Smith
Oklahoma – Frank Beamer, Joe Castiglione
Oregon – Rob Mullens
Southern Mississippi – Jeff Bower
Virginia Tech – Frank Beamer

Ohio State co-DC Jeff Hafley reportedly rebuffed interview overtures from Cincinnati Bengals

Getty Images
Leave a comment

The Cincinnati Bengals were rebuffed in its pursuit of an SEC defensive coordinator this past week.  As it turns out, they pursued another coordinator at the collegiate level — and were shot down yet again.

According to a report from the NFL Network, the Bengals sought an interview with new Ohio State co-defensive coordinator Jeff Hafley for their still-vacant coordinator job. “However,” the report stated, “he’s not going to renege on his commitment to OSU after taking the job last month.”

On Jan. 7, the Buckeyes confirmed Hafley and Michigan assistant Greg Mattison had been named as co-coordinators on Ryan Day‘s first OSU coaching staff.

The 39-year-old Hafley — he’ll turn 40 in April — has spent the past three seasons as the defensive backs coach for the San Francisco 49ers.  All told, Hafley worked at the NFL for the last seven seasons.

Hafley’s last job at the collegiate level coming at Rutgers in 2011 as part of the coaching staff of Greg Schiano, who was let go by Day as OSU’s defensive coordinator early last month.

Ex-Illinois WR Mike Bellamy returning to Illini as RBs coach

Getty Images
Leave a comment

A familiar face will reportedly be next up on the offensive side of Lovie Smith‘s Illinois coaching staff.

Bob Asmussen of the Champaign News-Gazette was one of a handful reporting Friday that Smith is set to name Mike Bellamy as his new running backs coach.  While there’s nothing yet official from the football program, a school official stated that a staff announcement could come as early as this weekend.

The hiring of Bellamy, who would replace an assistant lost to a MAC school, would mark a Champaign homecoming on a couple of fronts.

In the late eighties, Bellamy was a first-team All-Big Ten wide receiver and second-team All-American kick returner for the Illini.  Then, from 2012-15, Bellamy served as wide receivers coach at his alma mater.

The past two seasons, Bellamy was the wide receivers coach at Toledo.  In between his stints at Toledo and Illinois, he was a quality control coach at Mississippi State in 2016.

Arkansas reportedly hiring Auburn staffer for on-field role

Getty Images
Leave a comment

One SEC West school has turned to another from the same division to fill a hole on its coaching staff.  Reportedly.

According to 247Sports.com, and citing two sources familiar with the decision, Chad Morris is expected to hire Kenny Ingram as Arkansas’ defensive line coach. Morris’ move to add a new assistant to his Razorbacks staff was triggered by John Scott‘s move to South Carolina earlier this offseason.

Ingram, who played his college football at Arkansas State, has spent the past two seasons as the Director of Player Relations at Auburn.

Prior to his time on The Plains, Ingram worked as the defensive line coach at Cincinnati from 2015-16.  From 2006-09, he was on the coaching staff at Memphis, including a turn as defensive coordinator his last season with the Tigers.

In 2012, Ingram worked with the defensive line at his alma mater ASU.

Lincoln Riley’s brother named App State running backs coach

Getty Images
Leave a comment

Garrett Riley is a bright, accomplished coach in his own right, but until he wins back-to-back Heismans with two different quarterbacks (or, at least becomes a head coach in his own right), he’s going to be known as his big brother’s little brother. With that in mind: Lincoln Riley’s brother has been announced as Appalachian State’s new running backs coach.

“I’m excited to be part such a traditionally successful program,” Riley said in a statement. “I’m humble and grateful to have the opportunity to be around this organization and work with Coach Drink and the rest of the staff that I’ve known about for several years. Look forward to continuing the great success that Appalachian State’s had, and I can’t wait to start working with the players.”

Garrett followed Lincoln to Texas Tech and East Carolina before branching out on his own at Kansas, where he joined the staff as an offensive analyst in 2016 and was promoted to quarterbacks coach in 2017 and tight ends/fullbacks coach in 2018.

Appalachian State has not announced an offensive coordinator under new head coach Eli Drinkwitz — and certainly the head coach, a former offensive coordinator himself, will have tremendous sway on his favored side of the ball initially — it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Riley become the Mountaineers’ offensive coordinator in 2020 or 2021. “We’re looking to be cutting edge on offense, and we expect him to continue to push that,” Drinkwitz said Friday. “His experience coaching in North Carolina will also benefit our program.”