Barry Switzer

AP Photo/John Bazemore

College Football Awards Recap: Derrick Henry named Maxwell Award and Doak Walker winner

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Alabama running back Derrick Henry had a big night at the 2015 Home Depot College Football Awards Show in Atlanta Thursday. The two Heisman finalists walked away with some of the top honors of the night, with Henry being named the Maxwell Award and Walter Camp Player o the Year winner and the Doak Walker Award winner as the nation’s best running back.

Henry became the first running back to win the Maxwell Award since 2002 when Penn State’s Larry Johnson won the award. He is the second player from Alabama to win the award in the past three seasons, joining quarterback A.J. McCarron in 2013. McCarron was Alabama’s first Maxwell Award winner. Earlier in the evening, prior to the award show, Henry was also named the Walter Camp Player of the Year, giving Henry three individual awards by the end of the night.

Henry was not the only Heisman finalist to take home some hardware Thursday night. Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson was named the Davey O’Brien Award winner as the nation’s top quarterback. The Davey O’Brien Award winner has gone on to win the Heisman Trophy each of the past five seasons and all but one season since 2006. Stanford’ Christian MCaffrey was up for a handful of honors but did not take any awards home.

Maxwell Award (Player of te Year): Derrick Henry, Alabama

Bednarik Award (Best Defensive Player): Tyler Matakevich, Temple

Davey O’Brien Award (Best QB): Deshaun Watson, Clemson

Biletnikoff Award (Best WR): Corey Coleman, Baylor

Doak Walker Award (Best RB): Derrick Henry, Alabama

Rimington Trophy (Best C): Ryan Kelly, Alabama

John Mackey Award (Best TE): Hunter Henry, Arkansas

Outland Trophy (Interior Lineman): Joshua Garnett, Stanford

Jim Thorpe Award (Best DB): Desmond King, Iowa

Ray Guy Award (Best P): Tom Hackett, Utah

Lou Groza Award (Best K): Ka’imi Fairbairn, UCLA

Home Depot Coach of the Year: Dabo Swinney, Clemson

Disney Spirit Award: Hank Goff, Concordia University, St. Paul

Contributions to College Football Award: Barry Switzer, Oklahoma

Barry Switzer weighs in on Oklahoma fraternity racism story

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You knew at some point former Oklahoma football head coach Barry Switzer was going to be given an opportunity to speak his mind about the recent story regarding a racist video connected to the Sigma Alpha Epsilon chapter in Norman. As the university’s leadership took actions to shut down the fraternity on campus and current head coach Bob Stoops joined his players in an on-campus protest and demonstration, Switzer came to the defense of the chapter as a whole, stating the entire chapter should not have to be punished for the acts of a few captured and shared on video.

“I understood that supposedly they were called bigots that lived in this house, none of them could live on this campus. I haven’t seen the interview, but if that happened and occurred, that’s no different from what those kids did on that bus,” Switzer told KOCO in Oklahoma City.“Throw a blanket over these kids that are here and say that they’re bigots? That’s unacceptable.”

According to The Dallas Morning News, Switzer is an honorary member of SAE. Switzer also says he has never heard the racist chant before seeing the video of fraternity members chanting it on a bus.

“It hurts me because I have a vested interest in this. I am an SAE and I know the kids in this house,” Switzer said. “I spend some time over here and I know what they’re like. Hey, I wouldn’t put up with that crap either and they don’t either and they don’t believe in it.”

While this story is not directly tied to the Oklahoma football program, it has led to at least one player on the recruiting trail taking a step back for now. Four-star 2016 Texas offensive tackle Jean Delance announced his decision to decommit from Oklahoma, which quickly led to current Sooners looking to repair the damage supposedly done. The sad fact is racism exists just about anywhere you look. Unbelievable as it may be in the year 2015, this is not just an Oklahoma problem. If anything, the leaders in place at Oklahoma should be applauded for the handling of this story, including Stoops with the football team.

Barry Switzer would be an offensive genius if coaching today

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If Barry Switzer were still coaching today, it sounds like he would have a good old time with calling plays. In an interview with ESPN.com on Wednesday, Switzer said he would likely be coaching offense in a similar fashion to what Oregon and Auburn are doing. In fact, Switzer said he would take pages from both programs’ playbooks.

“If I were coaching today, I would be running what Oregon and Auburn run,” Switzer said, as transcribed by Al.com. “I would be up-tempo, like Oregon, and I would have more option, like Auburn.”

The best of both worlds.

Of course, a return to the wishbone could be fun to watch at times too. It might require a bit of tweaking today, but mixing that in with some up-tempo and some option would be a nice blast from the past.

One thing Switzer might struggle with in today’s game is covering up misdemeanors by his players, as he previously admitted to doing during his coaching days in Norman.

Barry Switzer admits to covering up Sooners misdemeanors

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Barry Switzer is a controversial college football legend. The head coach of 12 Big Eight championships and three national champions during his time at Oklahoma admitted recently he worked with the local authorities to keep misdemeanor crimes committed by Oklahoma football players under wraps.

“I’d have local county people call me and say, ‘One of your guys is drunk and got in a fight and is jail down here.’ And I’d go down and get him out,” Switzer explained to USA Today. “Or I’d send an assistant coach down to get his ass out. The sheriff was a friend of the program. He didn’t want the publicity. He himself knew this was something we didn’t need to deal with in the media or anything with publicity.”

Keep in mind that Switzer coached in a different era. Even the smallest crimes seem to find their way to the public in today’s age, and Switzer may not have been able to keep things on the down-low as much in today’s game as he apparently could in the 1970s and 1980s. This kind of relationship would be ripped to shreds in today’s world of college football with the way it is covered. Switzer is aware of that as well.

“This is back before social media and the Internet and all that,” he said. “And most colleges ran it that way. Most coaches ran it that way. We all did.”

Switzer did say he never took any part in covering up any major or felony crimes. The coach of the Sooners was only focused on keeping minor crimes out of the public light, and apparently he had help in high places to allow that to happen.