- Pat Forde at Yahoo Sports8 hrs ago
OXFORD, Miss. – The University of Mississippi athletic program is under investigation by the NCAA for potential rules violations in multiple sports.
Athletic director Ross Bjork confirmed to Yahoo Sports on Wednesday that Ole Miss “is working with the NCAA” in an ongoing investigation. Bjork said the school has not received a Notice of Allegations from the NCAA, nor does it have a date set for a hearing before the NCAA Committee on Infractions. He declined further comment.
Multiple sources told Yahoo Sports the Mississippi football and women’s basketball programs are subjects of the investigation. One source with knowledge of the probe said the bulk of the potential violations relate to women’s basketball. The source said the current football staff of head coach Hugh Freeze is not believed to be implicated in any major violations, and that much of the football inquiry dates back to actions by a previous Ole Miss staff. Freeze is in his third year at the school. The source said there have been no new allegations, all NCAA interviews have completed and the school is waiting for the NCAA Department of Enforcement's next step.
- Pat Forde at Yahoo Sports8 hrs ago
Northbound on Highway 25, Miss. – Rick Cleveland has a drawl so delightful that it feels like his words are coated in melting butter. It is the organic byproduct of spending 60 of his 61 years here, in a state he affectionately refers to as the “poorest, fattest and least educated in America.” He’s as Mississippi as catfish and cotton.
The entire Cleveland family is a state institution. Ace Cleveland was the longtime sports information director at the University of Southern Mississippi and has his name on the school’s football press box. His son Bobby became the state’s leading outdoors writer. And then there was son Rick, who became the foremost voice on Mississippi sports as the longtime columnist at the state’s flagship paper, the Jackson Clarion-Ledger – a man so well-connected that he’s known as “The Governor.”
When the newspaper quit caring, Rick got out. Today he is the executive director of the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame and still writes a syndicated weekly column. Riding shotgun through the countryside between Jackson and Starkville Tuesday, Rick’s soft drawl suddenly changed pitch as he contemplated a Saturday like no other in state history.
- Pat Forde at Yahoo Sports1 day ago
The Cincinnati Bearcats didn’t play the first two weeks of this football season, which gave coach Tommy Tuberville the chance to play couch potato.
Remote in hand, he traversed across the college football landscape for hours watching games. The player who stood out most to him?
Notre Dame quarterback Everett Golson.
“Gosh almighty, he’s good, now,” Tuberville said. “He’s real good. I think he’s made the most improvement. He’s got the team on his back.”
The first time Tuberville (or anyone) laid eyes on Golson in a game since the 2012 season was during Notre Dame's season opener against Rice. It was his initial game back since being booted out of school and missing the 2013 season for cheating on a test.
- Pat Forde at Yahoo Sports2 days ago
Forty names, games, teams and minutiae making news in college football (hazmat suits sold separately in Ann Arbor):
NO TRESPASSING IN THE HORSESHOE
The Dash isn’t advocating violence, but Ohio State strength coach Anthony Schlegel (1) gets a helmet sticker for authoritatively dealing with the dolt who ran onto the field during the Buckeyes’ game against Cincinnati on Saturday night. If you are dumb enough to come out of the stands and onto the field, well, then you may get the body slam you deserve.
To date in 2014, the two best hits in the blighted Big Ten have been delivered by an offensive lineman on an interception return and a strength coach.
THE LAST OF THE UNBEATENS – AND WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO THEM IN OCTOBER
- Pat Forde at Yahoo Sports3 days ago
Every Sunday, I will play Selection Committee member, take a look at the College Football Playoff picture and offer my bracket. Feel free to agree or disagree, starting with the latest development in Forde’s Fab Four: the defending national champions are out, making room for the initial appearance by Alabama.
The lesson this week: bye weeks are your friend. With several of the top teams receiving scares, it was better to sit out the final Saturday of September and move up by not playing.
SUGAR BOWL: No. 1 seed Oklahoma vs. No. 4 seed Texas A&M
- Pat Forde at Yahoo Sports9 days ago
Forty names, games, teams and minutiae making news in college football (ball-security instructional video sold separately in Ann Arbor):
FOUR WEEKS IN – WHAT WE’VE LEARNED
The Dash certainly has learned a lot in these first four weeks of the college football season. It has been a crash course of new knowledge. It’s great to arrive in late September so much smarter than before Labor Day.
Among the revelations to date:
We learned about a delightful internet meme that apparently is popular on college campuses. Yeah, the language is a little coarse, perhaps better suited for biker bars and minimum-security prisons, but isn’t it funnnnnn?
We also learned that said internet meme is best not shouted from a table top by a Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback who is under Title IX investigation at his school for alleged sexual assault.
Thus we learned that Jameis Winston (1) may never learn.
- Pat Forde at Yahoo Sports10 days ago
Every Sunday, I will play Selection Committee member, take a look at the College Football Playoff picture and offer my bracket. Feel free to agree or disagree, starting with this: Forde's Fab Four features the same teams as last week, but in different order.
Sugar Bowl: No. 1 seed Texas A&M (4-0) vs. No. 4 seed Florida State (3-0)
- Pat Forde at Yahoo Sports11 days ago
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – When Blake Sims ran back onto the field at Bryant-Denny Stadium after going to the locker room in the third quarter Saturday to have his injured shoulder checked, the transformation was complete.
The standing ovation he received from Alabama fans confirmed it: Sims had gone from unheralded to indispensable. From half-hearted acceptance to widely acclaimed. From game manager to game changer. From short-time starter to one of the all-time best performances in school passing history.
The fifth-year senior, who spent one season at running back and two more as the invisible backup to AJ McCarron, wasn’t supposed to be the guy leading this Crimson Tide team. The plan was for Florida State transfer Jacob Coker to step into the starting role, while Sims finished his career as more of a spectator than a competitor.
Coker is five inches taller and has the kind of arm that makes pro scouts’ pulse quicken. But a funny thing happened along the way to his Crimson coronation.
Sims wouldn’t get out of the way.
“From last year to spring, he improved a lot,” said star wide receiver Amari Cooper. “Then from spring to camp, he improved even more. So we had a lot of faith in him.”
- Pat Forde at Yahoo Sports13 days ago
Tara Trickett watches football games through binoculars. This is the byproduct of more than three decades of marriage to an offensive line coach. If you want to know what’s happening in the trenches, it helps to zoom in.
But the focus shifts to quarterback when her son, Clint, plays. And with her binoculars trained on the West Virginia quarterback last Sept. 28 against Oklahoma State, she knew before anyone else after one particular play that something was wrong with her boy.
“I could tell immediately he was hurt,” she said. “Just the way he was holding his arm.”
The problem was with his throwing shoulder. This was Trickett’s first start as a Mountaineer, and first college start since a fill-in appearance as a freshman at Florida State. He was hurt and he knew it, too. He couldn’t finish the upset of Oklahoma State, turning over the latter stages to backup Paul Millard.
- Pat Forde at Yahoo Sports14 days ago
And now, being a serial knucklehead finally has a price for Famous Jameis.
Florida State’s decision to suspend star quarterback Jameis Winston for a half against Clemson Saturday is the first football playing time he will miss at the school for disciplinary reasons. The cumulative effect of the Heisman Trophy winner’s recurring judgment lapses finally became too much for the school to overlook, brush aside or peddle off to the baseball team.
It is, frankly, about time. But it’s not enough time.
The Tomahawk-Chopping zealots who have blindly defended Winston through an assortment of situations grave and picayune will say it’s too much. They will say he’s just a college kid, unfairly persecuted, under an unreasonable microscope – still paying for a false accusation that yielded no charges last year. But they’ll complain mostly because, by Osceola, this is a big game. The opponent is Clemson, an Atlantic Coast Conference rival capable of handing the Seminoles their first loss since 2012.