The point of David Hale’s ESPN article was about Dabo Swinney‘s potential future at Alabama, or lack thereof. The Clemson head coach is a natural replacement for Nick Saban one day, given that he’s beaten Saban two out of the last three times they’ve played, and that he’s an Alabama native, an Alabama graduate, a former Crimson Tide wide receiver and a former Crimson Tide assistant coach under two separate regimes.
Swinney has towed that thin line splendidly of late, repeatedly stating that, while he loves his alma mater, Swinney’s happy at Clemson and has no plans to leave. Still, the future remains unwritten and who knows how he’ll feel in 2025? Again, he’s done a remarkable job of showing affection to his alma mater and loyalty to his employer at the same time.
It was all going great, until he said something truly ridiculous:
“Who knows what’s going to happen down the road? I have no idea,” Swinney said. “I just try to be great where my feet are. That’s my focus every day. Who knows? They may do away with college football in three years. There may be no college football. They may want to professionalize college athletics. Well, then, maybe I’ll go to the pros. If I’m going to coach pro football, I might as well do that. I may get a terrible president or a terrible AD one day. I don’t know. I have no idea what’s down the road. But I know what we have at Clemson is special, and I wanted to make a commitment to the university. That’s what the message of the contract was.”
Here’s a piece of news for Swinney: College athletics already is a professional enterprise for everyone involved, everyone except the people actually doing the athletics.
Dabo knows this, he works in college athletics every day. In fact, Clemson will pay him $93 million to remain in college athletics for the next 10 years. Assuming he finishes out the life of the deal, Swinney will make well over $100 million over his professional career in college athletics.
The point of this piece is not to shame Swinney for his earnings — although it is incredibly bad optics for a guy making darn near eight figures a year to resent players earning a larger piece of the pie, particularly in a time where Congress is sniffing around the NCAA’s amateurism model. College athletics is a business, and at its highest levels it’s incredibly big business. Clemson is making exponentially more money off its football program than it did 30 years ago, and Dabo deserves a piece of that pie. But the players’ piece hasn’t grown at the same rate over the past 10, 20, 50 years. Not unless you want to count staff nutritionists (and their respective salaries) and some free rounds of putt-putt as compensation.
If we’re to read into the subtext of what Dabo’s saying here, it’s that the only reason he coaches college football is because the players don’t get paid. Turning boys into men? Shaping the next generation of young leaders? Helping form young men’s character in a critical portion of their lives? No, Swinney’s in it because his players don’t get paid.
Perhaps that’s an unfair reading into Swinney’s comments, but then again maybe it’s not. After all, he just told us how he really feels above.
I’m not sure if you knew this, but it can get hot in Tampa in the early fall. Humid. Steamy. Muggy. Downright uncomfortable. Sweat is a part of life there, especially if you’re spending your Saturday afternoons running around in full pads and a helmet.
As such, South Florida figured it’d be to their advantage to wear lightweight, breathable uniforms, and Adidas has produced.
On Tuesday, USF debuted a brand new WVN A1 uniform, the German-based manufacturer’s lightest uniform. USF was certain to point out they will be the only team in the threads this season.
“We are very excited that in the second year of our partnership with adidas our football team will be the only one in the country wearing their lightest weight uniforms,” USF AD Michael Kelly said in a statement. “We look forward to the Bulls looking great and feeling great in the new lightweight, breathable material.”
The design itself is slightly different from what the Bulls wore previously, solid green or white with green shoulders, cresting into golden bull horns on each side, above a solid color pant. The metallic material that comprises the golden Bull horn on each shoulder was developed in Israel.
Everyone has their own opinion when it comes to uniforms, but in this set of eyes these kits are a massive step up from the chainmail-style Adidas template South Florida wore previously, shown above.
The new, lightweight uniforms will take the field for the first time on Friday, Aug. 30 vs. Wisconsin (7 p.m. ET, ESPN).
Kansas State wide receiver Hunter Rison will pursue a second transfer in as many years, according to reports Tuesday from GoPowercat and the Wichita Eagle.
The son of Michigan State great Andre Rison, Hunter signed with his father’s alma mater in 2017 and caught 19 passes for 224 yards as a freshman before transferring to Kansas State. After sitting out the 2018 season, as per NCAA transfer rules, Rison shined in spring practice, but his career as a Wildcat was instantly derailed when he was arrested for domestic battery in April.
Rison was immediately suspended from the team, though he maintains his innocence. Charges have not been filed, and his first court appearance in the civil case related to the charge is scheduled for July 16.
“This will be my only response,” Rison wrote on Twitter at the time. “I will continue to be myself … A man of God, as well as a great student-athlete at this university. I have done nothing wrong.”
Texas linebacker Demarco Boyd will continue to be a UT student but no longer a Longhorn football player, according to Anwar Richardson of Orangebloods.
Boyd, a linebacker out of Gilmer, Texas, was suspended last season after he was arrested for an alleged assault last July.
According to Richardson, Boyd will remain in school until his graduate transfer, when he will pursue a graduate transfer elsewhere. A 3-star member of UT’s 2016 class, Boyd redshirted his first year on campus and played sparingly in his one season on the active roster.
He is the younger brother of former Texas cornerback Kris Boyd, a 2019 seventh-round pick of the Minnesota Vikings.
Particularly on the offensive side of the ball, Sterlin Gilbert‘s first-year roster at McNeese State will have a decidedly FBS look to it.
Earlier this month, the Cowboys announced the addition of four transfers from the FBS level to the roster — fifth-year senior wide receiver Rhashid Bonnette (Louisiana Tech), redshirt sophomore running back D’Andre Hicks (Appalachian State), redshirt sophomore defensive lineman Damien DeGruy (Fresno State) and third-year junior running back Elijah Mack (South Florida). As McNeese State plays at the FBS level, all four of the players will be eligible to play immediately in 2019.
Bonnette also comes to Lake Charles as a graduate transfer from Tech.
During his time in Ruston, Bonnette totaled 1,065 yards and three touchdowns on his 74 receptions. 22 of those catches, 300 of the yards and one of the touchdowns came this past season.
Mack, one of a handful of suspended Bulls ultimately dismissed from Charlie Strong‘s program late last year, ran for 59 yards on 14 carries in 10 appearances during his time at USF and will be a third-year junior this season.
After moving from the defensive backfield to the offensive backfield between the 2017 and 2018 campaigns, Hicks rushed for 185 yards and a touchdown in the first six games last year as a redshirt freshman before going down with a season-ending injury.
DeGruy played in a total of 16 games during his time with the Bulldogs, including a dozen as a true freshman in 2017. During that time, he was credited with eight tackles.