On more than one occasion, we’ve noted that, even if a player places his name into the portal, they can still return to their original program. This week, that very scenario has played out yet again.
Earlier this offseason, it was confirmed that USC wide receiver Velus Jones had placed his name into the NCAA transfer database, the first step in a potential move away from the Trojans. On Twitter Monday, however, Jones indicated that he has decided to remain at USC and continue his collegiate playing career with the Trojans.
Feels great to be a Trojan can’t wait to get back to work with my brothers war time! ⚔️ ⏳
Jones, a three-star 2016 signee, was fourth on the Trojans in receptions (24) and receiving yards (266) as a redshirt sophomore this past season. He also led the team with a 22.7 yards per kick return average.
After a slow start, Alabama continues to make inroads on the football recruiting trail. Significant inroads.
Monday, four-star defensive back Devonta Smith, a one-time Ohio State commit, committed to Alabama football. Two days later, four-star defensive end Dallas Turner did the same. The Florida high schooler, who had Florida, Georgia, Michigan and Oklahoma as part of his Final Five, gave his verbal in a video.
Turner had taken a visit to Tuscaloosa back in February. That trip seemed to clinch the deal for the Crimson ide.
“I knew after the visit,” Turner said. “I just liked the amount of history at the school and how productive the school is and the high standards that they have for their players. …
“I trust [the Alabama football] program the most. I feel like they want me to be the best version of me.”
Turner is rated as the No. 2 weakside defensive end on the 247Sports.com composite. The Fort Lauderdale high schooler is the No. 10 recruit regardless of position in the Sunshine State. He’s also the No. 44 prospect overall on that same composite.
The two commitments continue a significant uptick in recruiting success for the Crimson Tide.
Roughly six weeks ago, Alabama held the No. 54 class in the country for the 2021 cycle. Right behind Rice. And just ahead of UTSA. Now? The Tide sits at No. 12 nationally — after they were No. 19 following the Smith commitment. In the SEC, they now have the No. 4 class in the conference behind Tennessee (No. 4), Florida (No. 8) and LSU (No. 9).
Here’s to guessing, though, that the Tide is not finished on the recruiting trail. Far from it, in fact.
There is history behind such confidence, of course. Just once since Nick Saban took over has Alabama finished outside the Top Five in recruiting. That was the 2007 class, signed in February of that year. One month after Saban was hired.
Oklahoma’s Lincoln Riley will take a 10% cut in pay
Go ahead and add the Oklahoma football coach as taking one for the team. Or school, as the case may be.
Wednesday, Oklahoma announced that, with the start of the 2020-21 fiscal year, the athletic department is initiating cost-cutting measures that will help slash “approximately $13.7 million in controllable operating expenses.” Included in that is a 10% salary reduction for any university employee earning a salary of $1 million or more per year. Oklahoma head football coach Lincoln Riley, of course, is part of that group.
Last year, Riley was paid nearly $6.4 million, a figure that was second in the Big 12 and ninth nationally. With a 10% reduction, Riley would forego in the neighborhood of $640,000.
All of us understand that a number of circumstances will unfold in the weeks ahead,” he said. “Our staff continues to monitor our expense and income projections closely and we’ll take other actions, as necessary.”
Castiglione added that he was pleased that the department was able to balance its budget for the 2019-20 fiscal year.
“It’s a testament to our staff and our practices that we were able to balance our budget for fiscal year 2020,” Castiglione said. “We have always benefited from excellent teamwork in our department, but our staff has come together as never before. I am very proud of our people.
Below is a partial list of FBS programs that have initiated various cost-cutting measures for athletic department personnel, including coaches:
The sports world, including college football, has essentially screeched to a halt as countries around the world battle the coronavirus pandemic. As such, there’s a dearth of college football news as spring practices have all but been canceled at every level of the sport. And there’s even some concern that the health issue could have an impact on the 2020 college football campaign.
In that vein, we thought it might be fun to go back through the CollegeFootballTalk archives that stretch back to 2009 and take a peek at what transpired in the sport on this date.
So, without further ado — ok, one further ado — here’s what happened in college football on July 2, by way of our team of CFT writers both past and present.
(P.S.: If any of our readers have ideas on posts they’d like to read during this college football hiatus, leave your suggestions in the comments section. Mailbag, maybe?)
Then again, that doesn’t much matter as the running back has reportedly opted to start over at Garden City Community College. The news of the JUCO move was first reported late last week.
It’s expected that Grant will spend the 2020 season at the Kansas junior college, then move back to an FBS school. That would leave him with two years of eligibility at this level of football starting in 2021.
Grant was a three-star member of the Florida State football Class of 2018. The Georgia native was rated as the No. 17 running back in the country on the 247Sports.com composite. He held Power Five offers from nearly two dozen schools, including Florida, Georgia and Tennessee.
In 2019, Grant didn’t see the field at all for the Seminoles. As a true freshman, Grant played a dozen games. In that action, he ran five times… for zero yards. He did, though, lead FSU by averaging 22.5 yards on 11 kick returns. Additionally, he totaled nine tackles on special teams.