For the fifth time this year, and the third time in the SEC, a football program’s fans have “cost” their university financially.
Following Texas A&M’s epic seven-overtime win over LSU Saturday night/Sunday morning, Aggies fans descended on Kyle Field en masse in celebration of A&M’s upset of the Tigers. Monday, the SEC announced that A&M has been fined $50,000 for violating “the Southeastern Conference access to competition area policy, due to fans entering the field.”
This was the university’s first violation of a policy that was enacted in 2004; a second violation would result in a $100,000 fine and any subsequent violation would cost the school $250,000 for each occurrence. The conference noted in its release that “[f]ines levied against schools for violation of the access to competition area policy are deposited into the SEC Post-Graduate Scholarship Fund.”
The SEC had previously fined Kentucky (HERE) and LSU (HERE) for field-storming fans this season. The Pac-12 also fined Washington State for its own field-storming incident last month, while the Big 12 did the same to Iowa State.
This, though, likely isn’t the last time the SEC home office gets involved in a situation surrounding this game as it had previously been reported that an LSU football staffer, Steve Kragthorpe, was punched by an A&M staffer in the postgame maelstrom. It was subsequently confirmed that the alleged puncher is the nephew of A&M head coach Jimbo Fisher; Monday night, a statement attributed to Fisher was released by the football program.
Yet again, a young man with the rest of his life ahead of him has had it snuffed way too early.
Citing multiple sources, 247Sports.com confirmed Tuesday night that Joshua Ancrum, a Class of 2020 football recruit, was killed in a shooting earlier that day. The details of what led to the tragedy have not yet been divulged.
In a tweet posted early Tuesday evening, Ancrum’s 7-on-7 team mourned the high school junior’s passing.
A three-star cornerback, Ancrum held offers from Bowling Green, FIU, Southern Miss and USF. “That list was likely to grow, thanks to his strong showing at The Opening Miami,” 247Sports.com wrote. “Ancrum was named the MVP of the defensive backs at the camp with a couple of interceptions.”
Our thoughts, prayers and condolences go out to all of those impacted by Ancrum’s senseless and tragic death.
One of the greatest UCLA football head coaches of all-time is the latest to battle one of the most insidious diseases in the history of mankind.
UCLA has confirmed that Terry Donahue was recently diagnosed with an undisclosed form of cancer and underwent surgery this past Friday. The 74-year-old Donahue was released from the hospital Tuesday morning and is set to begin chemotherapy.
“The Donahue family appreciates everyone’s well wishes but requests privacy at this time,” the football program wrote in its release.
Donahue, who played his college football for the Bruins in the mid-sixties, served as the offensive line coach at his alma mater from 1971-75 before replacing Dick Vermeil, who left to take the same job with the Philadelphia Eagles, and taking over as head coach in 1976.
In 20 seasons leading UCLA, Donahue led the Bruins to a school-record 151 wins. From 1976-95, Donahue captured five Pac-12 championships and two conference Coach of the Year honors. He was the first coach in NCAA history to win a bowl game in seven consecutive seasons, and had a 10-9-1 record against crosstown rival USC.
In 2000, Donahue was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame.
Southern Miss and Troy on Tuesday jointly announced a four-game series to be spread across the next decade.
Troy will visit Hattiesburg on Sept. 18, 2021, but Southern Miss will not make a return visit until Sept. 14, 2024. The teams will then take the next three years off before resuming in Troy again on Sept. 16, 2028, and the series will conclude on Sept. 1, 2029 in Hattiesburg.
“We are excited to announce these future games for our football program,” Southern Miss AD Jeremy McClain said. “Our scheduling philosophy moving forward will continue to include regionally based opponents that provide great opportunities for fans to enjoy Golden Eagle football.”
Southern Miss and Troy have met nine times previously, first in 1937 and most recently 2016. The Trojans won both of those games, while Southern Miss took the seven in between.
As of today, Southern Miss has its entire 2021 non-conference slate lined up against teams from the state of Alabama. The Golden Eagles open at South Alabama, then visit Tuscaloosa a week after hosting Troy. The Trojans stand as USM’s only non-conference opponent on the books for the 2024, ’28 and ’29 seasons.
Troy, meanwhile, hosts Liberty on Sept. 11, 2021, and visits South Carolina a week after the trip to Hattiesburg. The Trojans will visit Memphis a week before hosting USM in 2024, and have no other games scheduled in 2028 or ’29.
Wyoming has hired Willie Mack Garza as the club’s safeties coach, the program announced Tuesday.
Garza is a new name to Cowboys fans but not new to head coach Craig Bohl. Garza worked for Bohl at North Dakota State from 2005-08. That stint led him to join Lane Kiffin‘s staffs at Tennessee (2009) and USC (’10). At Tennessee, Garza committed a show-cause penalty for violating a recruiting rule.
“I do want to make one thing clear, Willie Mack has acknowledged a mistake he made 10 years ago that resulted in him being disciplined by the NCAA for a recruiting violation,” Bohl said. “Since then, he has been reinstated by the NCAA. We have a reputation of holding ourselves to high ethical standards here at the University of Wyoming, and I expect Coach Garza to follow those high standards.”
Garza spent the past two seasons at Dixie State, a Division II school in Utah, including one as defensive coordinator. He left Dixie State earlier this year to become the co-defensive coordinator and defensive backs coach at Texas A&M-Commerce, another Division II school.
“First and foremost this is a blessing that Coach (Craig) Bohl and the University of Wyoming Athletics Department has provided me this opportunity to come coach here,” said Garza. “I love coaching. It is in my blood. I love being around the players and the other coaches, going into the WAR Room and preparing. This is also an opportunity for me to provide a platform for young men to be successful on and off the football field in the four to five years that they are here and for the rest of their lives.”
With Garza aboard, Cowboys defensive coordinator Jake Dickert will now transition to linebackers coach in addition to his coordinator duties.