Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Catching up has identified the shrimp fork

The Oklahoma dudes are gone: All those Oklahoma receivers who got suspended a couple weeks ago -- including Jaz Reynolds, this year's obvious No. 2 across from Kenny Stills, and backup Trey Franks -- are off the team. This is from Bob Stoops:
"(They) have been removed from scholarship and we aren't counting on any of them.

"We'll keep moving forward. This program doesn't bank on any one individual player. We've recruited a lot of really good players, so we'll keep moving on."
Wow. There was a report from OUInsider at the time of the "indefinite suspensions" that Franks would be done for the year and Reynolds would be out for seven games (an oddly specific number); apparently not.

I'm gonna be lazy here and blockquote my previous post on the three guys' suspensions:
Reynolds was third on the team last year with 41 catches for 715 yards and five touchdowns and would be a significant loss, especially with Ryan Broyles gone. Kenny Stills is pretty dang good and a legitimate No. 1 wideout, but depth might be an issue since Reynolds and Franks are the only other scholarship receivers on the roster who have ever caught a pass and might not even be on the roster by the time the season rolls around. ...

Keep in mind that Landry Jones was flat-out not good last year after Broyles got hurt. Whether that continues with even less experience at receiver (at least for the first half of the year) remains to be seen.
Yeah ... that. It might not be a coincidence that Oklahoma requested a transfer waiver Monday for junior receiver Jalen Saunders, a Broyles clone who had 1,065 yards and 12 touchdowns last year for Fresno State, made the All-WAC first team and and then bailed when Pat Hill was fired. Given that his reasons for transferring were (according to him) purely coach/system-related, a waiver approval seems unlikely; I can't remember a guy ever getting approved to play immediately just because his previous coach got fired and he didn't like whatever was going on with the new guy. Oklahoma probably figured it was worth a shot anyways since (a) the depth chart at receiver this year is horrifying and (b) the NCAA makes inexplicable decisions all the time.

BTW, defensive back Cortez Johnson -- who transferred from Arizona after the Mike Stoops relocation -- also requested a waiver. His doesn't sound any more likely than Saunders' given the lack of a family-emergency-type justification.

This is so John L. Smith: How was I just made aware that John L. Smith has a Twitter account? This is the hilarity that emanated from it the other day:

EVERYBODY STOP WHAT YOU'RE DOING AND LEARN WHICH ONE IS THE SHRIMP FORK FOR SERIOUS THIS IS IMPORTANT. This is somehow both amazing and not at all surprising given the complete insanity of John L. Smith, who's apparently using "etiquette team dinners" as a way to fill the weekly time slot vacated by Bobby Petrino's "etiquette speed dating" (zing!).

As for his Twitter account, I've conducted a highly scientific study and determined that his tweets include an average of two exclamation points each and never fewer than one, because obviously tweeting is so exciting! #gohogs!!!
Hogs Win! Great game! Congratulations Razorbacks! Omaha Bound! Go Hogs!
 I have nothing more to add.

Speaking of Arkansas: The new-uniform unveiling du jour:

Reaction: The standard home/road unis aren't much different from the old ones and look fine, and I kinda like the different-but-still-classic-and-reasonable look of the white helmet. The black-ish ones are awful; they look color-reversed or something and are almost identical to Arkansas State's, which ... ummm ... yeah. Recreating another in-state school's uniforms just to have a black one because everybody's doing it = dumb. Get off my lawn, etc.

No more number retirement: Michigan announced a kind-of-vague program last year featuring "legends patches" as a way to honor guys whose numbers would typically be retired; the reason provided was that they simply couldn't retire any more numbers and still have enough for everybody to wear, thus honorary patches and the reissuing of the numbers.

The initial ceremony-type thing involved Desmond Howard and resulted in this, which will be worn by Roy Roundtree this year on the No. 21 jersey:

Program extension ahoy:
ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) -- College football's winningest school is putting three of its five retired jerseys back on the field, honoring former President Gerald Ford, Bennie Oosterbaan and Ron Kramer as "Michigan Football Legends," this year.
A current player to be determined by the football staff will start wearing Ford's 48, Oosterbaan's 47 and Kramer's 87 after each former star is honored with a ceremony.

"The success and acceptance of the Desmond Howard Legend recognition led to conversations with the family members who had retired jerseys, several of whom were never recognized or celebrated in the appropriate manner," Michigan athletic director Dave Brandon said in a statement. "The Ford, Kramer and Oosterbaan families want to see their family member honored in this way."

Tom Harmon's No. 98 and No. 11, which was worn by brothers Francis, Albert and Alvin Wistert, are the other two jerseys that have been retired.
Interesting. I don't have a particularly strong feeling about this either way given the school's number constraints (it seems unfair that Charles Woodson and Desmond Howard can't really be appropriately honored despite winning the freakin' Heisman Trophy) and the made-up-but-probably-true fact that 99 percent of Michigan fans can't identify more than half of the retired numbers and their accompanying players.

I do have two requests, though. The first: Don't issue those numbers to random Recruit X who almost definitely will have no appreciation for it and won't live up to it. I know that's what MGoBlog is calling for, but I'm of the opinion that it really has to be something meaningful that's earned over the course of a career, even if it means Player Y won't have a chance to establish his own number as something legend-worthy. The second: Keep 48 and 98 retired. Ford was the freakin' president of the United States, so his number obviously means something beyond "All-American offensive lineman," and Harmon was a Heisman winner who put up some of the most ridiculous numbers EVER, was on the covers of Time and Life, married a movie star and then went on to become a World War II hero (a legit hero). He was Tom Brady if Tom Brady had been even better at Michigan and then gone over and negotiated a Middle East peace treaty right after he left school. How is anybody gonna live up to that?

Anyway, other than that, I'm on board with the idea of doing something dynamic (for lack of a better word) to honor various dudes of yore rather than just putting a bunch of numbers across the top of the press box or whatever. And I don't seem to be alone ... so that's nice.

Sucks to be those guys: The punishment for Ohio State's Jake Stoneburner and Jack Mewhort, who were suspended indefinitely last week for "interfering with official business" (also known as urinating on the outside of a building at 2 a.m.):

No explanation needed.

Way to pay attention: South Alabama becomes an official member of the Sun Belt this year, according to everybody except the people in charge of NCAA Football, who are too busy trying to figure out how to include special mascot entrances and whatnot rather than include all the teams:
The Jaguars were left out of EA Sports' hit video game franchise NCAA Football 13 despite being a full-fledged member of the Sun Belt Conference in 2013.
Julie Foster, a communications manager at EA Sports, told, a South Alabama fan site, that the video game franchise didn't know South Alabama was going to be a full member of the FBS.

"South Alabama was a provisional member of FBS last year and did not play a full FBS schedule," she wrote the site in an email. "We did not receive confirmation that they were changing to a full FBS schedule this year until it was too late for inclusion in NCAA Football 13. South Alabama will be included in NCAA Football 14."
There are four schools moving up (for some reason) from the FCS to the Sun Belt this year, and South Alabama is the only one not included. Derp.

There's a reason I stopped buying NCAA Football two years ago, and while it has everything to do with gameplay and nothing to do with FCS team accuracy, this is a pretty good indicator of the state of the franchise. #bringback2kfootball


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