Category Archives: Pac-12 Football

They got nothin’.

As a follow up to the previous post, check out two quotes from Washington State’s President Kirk Schulz.

“What the SEC has done is unify the other conferences in a way that nothing else could have, in terms of working together,” Schulz told the Hotline.

“A lot of people now are very concerned about the predatory nature of the SEC. More presidents are talking. There’s a lot of back and forth.”

Unified!  Predatory!  Heavy shit, but what exactly does it call for?

“After the Texas and Oklahoma news, there was some pushback and some thought that maybe we don’t need to expand. But the CFP still needs to expand to create more opportunities for more teams. There is more opportunity for Pac-12 schools with expansion with 12 teams than with four. Does it need tweaking? Perhaps. But I think there’s broad consensus that we need to move forward.

“I haven’t heard anyone in the Pac-12 footprint who thinks we shouldn’t expand. Look at small-market schools like Washington State and that year we had with Gardner Minshew. What’s our best shot to take advantage of a magical year like that? It’s an expanded playoff.”

Yeah, that’s what I thought.

In passing, here’s one last point:

Of course they do.

23 Comments

Filed under BCS/Playoffs, Pac-12 Football, SEC Football

TFW they expect you to do something

Shot.

Chaser.

I’m sure this will work out just fine.

33 Comments

Filed under Big 12 Football, Pac-12 Football

Location, location, location

Nailing down that coveted 11PM East Coast viewing window:

When all you’ve got to sell the networks is geography, you ain’t got much to sell.

By the way, you’re new here, George, so I’ll cut you some slack, but you might want to check with the Mountain West on that “the only conference” claim.

11 Comments

Filed under Pac-12 Football

“Anything that works elsewhere works even better in Las Vegas…’’

What a time to be alive, people.

One of the most influential event organizers in Las Vegas hopes to match the Pac-12 against opponents from the SEC and Big Ten in early-season showcase games at Allegiant Stadium in coming years.

“That’s something we will pursue,” Steve Hill, the CEO of the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, told the Hotline.

Hill “has a close working relationship with new Pac-12 commissioner George Kliavkoff, the former president of MGM Sports and Entertainment.”

Well, that’s certainly convenient.  And I’m old enough to remember when Vegas and sports gambling were anathema to the folks running college sports.  Which is to say I’m at least seven years old.

10 Comments

Filed under Pac-12 Football, What's Bet In Vegas Stays In Vegas

“It didn’t even seem like they wanted to hide it. It was so pervasive.”

What cracks me up about the unfolding recruiting scandal at Arizona State isn’t the scope of it, or even how brazen it was.  It’s how careless they were at carrying it out.

The dossier of documents sent to the Arizona State compliance department and the NCAA enforcement department on May 31 begins with a blunt message about allegations of NCAA improprieties in the ASU football program.

“I am writing this letter to inform you about recruiting violations that are occurring at Arizona State University in their Football department. My objective is…providing enough information to assure you if Arizona State football is looked into, there will be violations found.”

From there, the letter provides, sometimes in meticulous detail, allegations of a series of potential NCAA violations. It specifically names 10 Arizona State “individual staff members to investigate” and lists 13 “illegal recruiting prospects” who visited campus during the COVID-19 dead period.

Overall, there are more than a dozen allegations in the dossier, which was viewed by Yahoo Sports this week. Some of the allegations are specific and have documented receipts and screenshots of emails the dossier cites as evidence of ASU staffers allegedly arranging trips for prospects to visit campus.

Receipts!  The NCAA has the receipts!

… Sources told Yahoo Sports that a group of nearly a dozen staffers communicated regularly on group text about the allegedly illicit activities in the program.

The point of the group text wasn’t to accumulate allegations and pictures with a time stamp. Rather, it was used as a real-time exclamation of the disbelief of what was happening in the program, a source said. That disbelief was accentuated as staffers saw coaches who weren’t participating in the alleged behavior pushed out of their jobs or had responsibilities stripped away as associate head coach Antonio Pierce gained power.

“That group text wasn’t necessarily to bring to the NCAA, but it was a way to say, ‘Look at how blatant they are being about it,’” said a source. “It was a way we scoffed at it, like, ‘Can you believe these guys?’”

Nothing like real time, on sight analysis of major recruiting violations.

The rest of Thamel’s piece is a combination of “hells, yeah, we’ll tell everything we know about those fuckers” and “new phone, who ‘dis?” defenses from people with their names on unflattering evidence.  In other words, make sure your popcorn bag is full as you sit down to watch this unfold, friends.

Obviously, Herm Edwards’ big mistake was not hiring an SEC assistant coach who could direct him on how to do “if you ain’t cheatin’, you ain’t tryin'” the right way.

15 Comments

Filed under Pac-12 Football, Recruiting, The NCAA

O brave new world, that has such conferences in it.

You, a passionate college football fan:  what’s great about the proposed 12-team playoff is that it will encourage teams to beef up their schedules!  A real win-win for the fans!

The Pac-12, a P5 conference that sees the dollar signs on the horizon:  hold our beer.

Pac-12 athletic directors and incoming commissioner George Kliavkoff have engaged in preliminary discussions about significant changes to the structure of the football season as expansion of the College Football Playoff appears inevitable.

… However, a source indicated the 10 commissioners of Football Bowl Subdivision conferences strongly favor the format outlined in the current proposal: Automatic bids for the six highest-ranked conference champions, with six more slots allocated to at-large teams.

If adopted, the format would dramatically increase the likelihood of the Pac-12 participating in the sport’s showcase event but stop short of assuring a berth.

That detail likely will weigh heavily on the athletic directors and Kliavkoff as they evaluate options for the conference schedule and the future of the division format.

Scrap the divisions, and the first-place team would meet the second-place team for the championship.

A single 12-team league would eliminate the nightmare scenario in which, for example, a four-loss division winner with no hope for making the playoff upsets a two-loss division winner that would have qualified.

The lack of a guaranteed berth would also have repercussions for the regular-season schedule: Combine the nine-game league slate with at least one high-level non-conference game, and Pac-12 teams have a treacherous path to compiling the record necessary to qualify for the CFP.

“All the issues have pros and cons,” Knowlton said, “but they aren’t made in a vacuum. What does a 12-team playoff mean for playing eight vs. playing nine?”

Hey, he’s just asking.

10 Comments

Filed under BCS/Playoffs, Pac-12 Football

TFW autonomy isn’t all it’s cracked up to be

Shot.

Chaser.

Larry Scott’s final legacy:  being legitimately shit-talked by a mid-major conference.

13 Comments

Filed under Pac-12 Football

“… it’s karma. You reap what you sow.”

Jesus, these people were brazen.

Earlier this month, an anonymous person sent a dossier of dozens of pages to the Arizona State athletic department. It included screenshots, receipts, pictures and emails related to numerous potential violations within Arizona State’s football program, according to sources.

… The documentation includes specific evidence of multiple examples of high school prospects taking illicit on-campus recruiting trips to the Arizona State campus. Those came during the pandemic-inspired dead period that ended June 1. For more than a year prior, NCAA rules explicitly banned players from visiting on campus because of COVID-19. The dossier, according to sources, lays out pieces of both the players’ trips to campus and how those trips were paid for.

Sources said members of the football program deliberately, blatantly and consistently broke rules related to hosting players during the dead period, including coach Herm Edwards meeting with recruits. A source added that the evidence included pictures of the visits, including Edwards with a recruit who ended up enrolling at ASU.

They’ve got the receipts, in other words.  Not that it sounds like it was very hard digging them up.

… Multiple sources indicated that at least 30 players visited campus over a span of months, a practice so common coaches referenced “official visit weekends” in staff meetings, coaches bumped into recruits and families in a back stairwell and a routine developed of facility tours being given around 9 p.m. or 10 p.m. at night.

On one weekend in October, there were so many high school kids visiting that a staff member parked a 12-person van in the staff parking lot to tour around recruits. The visits spanned months, sources said, including some in October, the weekend of the UCLA game in December and through the spring game, which one source said “was like an official visit weekend.”

“It wasn’t a secret,” said a staff member with direct knowledge of the visits. “As far as knowing everyone who came into that [football] office, the number is too big and the names are too many. They would bring in parents, their moms and dads and friends. They’d get a facility tour like they were on an official visit. They’d show you the weight room and training room. They’d show you everything.”

My only question is how is ASU not in the SEC?  This is like “if you ain’t cheatin’, you ain’t tryin'” on steroids.  Jeremy Pruitt can only shake his head in admiration.

25 Comments

Filed under Pac-12 Football, Recruiting

In sickness and in health

This gives a whole new meaning to the term “dead period” ($$).

The NCAA is investigating whether the Arizona State football program hosted high school prospects during the recent COVID-19 dead period, and possibly other recruiting violations, The Athletic has learned.

It’s unknown how many prospects Arizona State is alleged to have entertained during the COVID-19 period or when they might have visited. Per one source, the school’s athletic compliance office recently started interviewing staff members. A former athletic department employee said some people in the football offices are concerned about losing their jobs.

“ASU can confirm the NCAA is conducting an investigation regarding allegations related to our football program,” Arizona State vice president of media relations and strategic communications Katie Paquet said in a statement to The Athletic. “In accordance with NCAA bylaws, the university cannot provide further comment at this time.”

What makes this really special is that half the coaching staff, including head coach Herm Edwards, tested positive for COVID-19.

13 Comments

Filed under Pac-12 Football, Recruiting, The Body Is A Temple

“I don’t care about the ratings.”

Coach making over $4 million a year to finish no better than third in his division in the last three seasons is upset ($$) that one the primary entities that makes his salary what it is doesn’t kowtow to his personal scheduling preferences.

“I am pissed at Fox for our kickoff time against Kansas State,” Shaw told The Athletic. “… For Stanford in particular and Oregon to be going and playing in a different time zone, and give us an early kickoff, to me, is incredibly disrespectful. And it shows a lack of understanding of what we have to do, and the way that time difference truly affects us. It shows a lack of care for our student athletes.

You always know they’re serious when they say they’re doing it for the kids.

47 Comments

Filed under Fox Sports Numbs My Brain, Pac-12 Football