Pat Forde

  • Offseason filled with controversy fails to dim Jameis Winston's love of spotlight

    Pat Forde at Yahoo Sports8 days ago

    GREENSBORO, N.C. – Anyone who expected a more introverted, introspective, interview-averse Jameis Winston this football season had that notion dismissed within seconds Sunday at Atlantic Coast Conference media days.

    Immediately upon entering a claustrophobic circle of reporters clustered around his table – at least 50, probably more – Winston started talking. He hadn't even taken a seat before his mouth began moving.

    "Before I say anything, how does it feel to have an ACC team come in here with a national championship?" the Florida State quarterback asked the media. "Can we get a round of applause? We finally took it away from the SEC, y'all."

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  • SEC's next star RB drawing comparisons to Adrian Peterson, Michael Jordan

    Pat Forde at Yahoo Sports12 days ago

    HOOVER, Ala. – The Southeastern Conference lost a staggering amount of star power, ranging from the No. 1 pick in the draft (Jadeveon Clowney) to a Heisman Trophy winner (Johnny Manziel) to a quarterback with multiple championship rings (AJ McCarron, who takes show-stopping wife Katherine Webb with him).

    So the hunt has been on here at SEC Media Days to identify the new leading men of the league. But there is a good chance the Next Big Thing isn't here, and hasn't yet even suited up for a college game.

    His name is Leonard Fournette, and listening to the LSU contingent here talk about the freshman running back is to hear a legend grow in real time.

    "Leonard Fournette? Man," said senior teammate Terrence Magee, who is actually competing with Fournette for carries. "I know you've already heard about him. Who hasn't? I think he's going to have a great year. I'm excited to watch him play."

    Magee estimated that it took him "about seven seconds" to figure out Fournette was the real deal. He saw the New Orleans product break one long run on film and was sold.

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  • Dean Smith's former players backing Roy Williams in wake of North Carolina's academic scandal

    Pat Forde at Yahoo Sports18 days ago

    Dean Smith is alive but absent, his remarkable mind ravaged by the effects of dementia. While that has caused deep mourning among those who know and love the legendary former North Carolina basketball coach, there is one small sliver of relief regarding his current condition.

    He is unaware of the ongoing integrity crisis that has engulfed the program he built into a national model.

    "I'm tired of it," said former Smith-era player Richard Vinroot. "I want it fixed. I want it to end."

    The NCAA recently announced it has re-opened its investigation of an academic scandal at Carolina. That figures to follow the tracks of the school's ongoing (and latest) investigation of itself. Those investigations follow the drip-drip-drip of allegations of classroom shortcuts – and other embarrassing headlines – at a school that once proudly considered itself the ultimate intersection of competitive excellence and off-court class.

    "It pains me greatly," Vinroot said. "I have such high regard for Coach Smith. I revere him."

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