- Sam Cooper at Dr. Saturday3 hrs ago
A few months after the NCAA announced that it would institute a handful of new academic policies beginning in 2016, the ACC has launched an initiative to make college prospects more aware of the changes.
For prospective Division I student-athletes who are graduating from high school in 2016 or later, the student-athlete must graduate with a 2.3 GPA in order to be eligible as a true freshman in college. With this new requirement and others on the way, the ACC released a video to get the word out to prospects.
- Sam Cooper at Dr. Saturday5 hrs ago
One of football’s favorite couples, ESPN college football sideline reporter Samantha Ponder and Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder, recently had their first child. The pregnancy was kept under wraps until the news of the Ponder’s new daughter emerged on social media in the past few days.
With Vikings training camp getting started this week, ESPN Vikings reporter Ben Goessling confirmed with Ponder, a Florida State alum, that his wife gave birth to a baby girl named Bowden.
Yes, the child is named after legendary Florida State head coach Bobby Bowden, Ponder’s coach from 2006-2009 in Tallahassee.
“Ponder and his wife, ESPN college football reporter Samantha Ponder, welcomed their first child earlier this month. They named their little girl Bowden Sainte-Claire Ponder -- the middle name is the same as Samantha's, while the first, of course, pays homage to retired Florida State coach Bobby Bowden.”
I'm sure that tribute will bring a smile to the face of any FSU fan.
- Sam Cooper at Dr. Saturday6 hrs ago
Oh, Steve Spurrier. This is the time of year the Ol’ Ball Coach refers to as “talking season,” and the South Carolina head coach was at it again Tuesday.
At ACC Media Days Monday, Dabo Swinney, the head coach of South Carolina’s top rival, Clemson, said jokingly that he and Spurrier were “from different planets.”
“He’s from Pluto and I’m from Mars,” Swinney said.
Spurrier responded with a light jab of his own during his visit to ESPN Tuesday.
“Dabo probably thinks there’s only, what, nine planets out there. I think I read where Pluto may not be considered one now,” Spurrier said.
- Sam Cooper at Dr. Saturday8 hrs ago
Notre Dame freshman Jonathan Bonner can predict the future -- at least the eighth-grade version of Bonner can.
Bonner, a 6-foot-3, 245-pound defensive end from Chesterfield, Mo., is a three-star recruit who committed to the Fighting Irish last June. Despite having offers from schools like Michigan State and Missouri, Bonner committed to Notre Dame the day he received his scholarship offer from the school.
Bonner did not have to think about the decision for very long -- Notre Dame was the school he envisioned himself attending for years.
Back in May, Bonner tweeted out a letter from eighth grade that he wrote to his future self. Now that he has arrived in South Bend, the letter, which offers words of advice for his future on and off the field, has made its way around social media.
This letter from my 8th grade self shows that my life is headed in the right direction. I had high expectations too! pic.twitter.com/0oafDRpHBn
- Sam Cooper at Dr. Saturday9 hrs ago
Punching a glass window is a bad idea. LSU freshman Trey Lealaimatafao learned this the hard way.
According to NOLA.com, Lealaimatafao suffered a serious arm injury after punching a glass window in the Tigers’ weight room on Monday. The 6-foot, 300-pound Lealaimatafao, a three-star defensive tackle from San Antonio, Texas, was reportedly “upset about a disagreement with his girlfriend.”
In another report, the Advocate, citing two “independent sources,” said that Lealaimatafao punched the window following “a dispute with another football player.”
When he punched the window, which is situated between the weight room and the indoor practice facility, the glass reportedly “tore through” Lealaimatafao’s bicep. A witness described the scene to NOLA.com as “horrific.”
- Sam Cooper at Dr. Saturday10 hrs ago
Georgia defensive lineman Jonathan Taylor was arrested for the second time this offseason in an incident that occurred early Tuesday morning. According to the Athens Banner-Herald, Taylor was arrested and charged with “aggravated assault/family violence” after an alleged incident with his girlfriend. The charge is a felony.
Police said that the 6-foot-4, 336-pound Taylor was the “primary aggressor” in a “domestic violence incident” that occurred in a residence hall on Georgia’s campus. Campus police had been called by a third party at 2:47 a.m. to “meet a possible victim.”
Per the Banner-Herald, police determined that the female victim, a UGA student who is not enrolled in summer school, was “possibly strangled by the offender." The incident occurred in Taylor’s dorm room after an argument, according to University of Georgia police chief Jimmy Williamson.
“There were visible signs of injuries about her neck,” Williamson said.
Williamson added that both Taylor and the victim were living together.
After abruptly leaving Wisconsin to take the Arkansas job, Bret Bielema’s first season in the SEC couldn’t have gone worse on the field. The Razorbacks went 3-1 in the non-conference schedule, and then promptly put up a goose egg in conference play, losing all eight contests to finish 3-9.
Despite the rough transition from the Big Ten, Bielema maintains that his program is improving in every way, just not in the win-loss column.
“If you sat down and interviewed my AD, I think he would tell you in every aspect other than wins, you can't do anything but be happy with what we've done,” Bielema said. “We've increased GPA, accountability, our APR. All those things are skyrocketing. Our kids aren't getting in trouble. We're doing positive things that lead me to believe they're learning and understanding what we're asking them to do. When that thing comes full circle, we're going to start to win. When we win, it's going to be able to maintain a winning style than this other thing that we've been living through.”
The always affable Les Miles did not disappoint at SEC Media Days Wednesday.
After updating the crowd of reporters about his children and the Miles family’s “miserable, but great fun” vacation to Austin, the LSU head coach expressed sly confidence about his young, but explosive Tigers.
Coming off a 10-3 season, the Tigers lost over a dozen players to the NFL, including several underclassmen, but Miles isn’t worried about those who think LSU might have a bit of a down year.
“I would be willing to bet that not many picked Auburn a year ago,” Miles said. “Our position is, ‘Don't bother us, we don't care, we just want to work, we want to improve, we want to play one game at a time, we want to point at the next opponent.’ We understand that doesn't mean that we're in the immediate talk, but if we continue to do the things we've done in the past, we'll earn our way.
“I like us. I like us in every game.”
Reliance on freshmen
This will be fun.
It was announced Wednesday that Alabama and Southern California will square off to kick off the 2016 season with a neutral site game. The game will be played as a part of the eighth annual Cowboys Classic at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas on September 3.
It will be the first regular season matchup between the two storied programs since 1978, a year when both teams shared the national title. The last overall matchup between the Crimson Tide and Trojans was the 1985 Aloha Bowl, a 24-3 Alabama win.
Alabama has played five neutral site games, winning four, since Nick Saban took over and will open its 2014 campaign in Atlanta against West Virginia. The Tide will also open its 2015 season against Wisconsin in Arlington.
The Trojans originally had a home date scheduled with New Mexico on that date, but that game has been switched to September 19, 2020.
The risky business of player-agent relationships may cost several Texas players their eligibility.
News emerged Monday from the Austin American-Statesman that two Texas football players each “received a meal paid for by an agent” and that their NCAA eligibility for 2014 was in question. Texas reported the incident to the NCAA on June 6, but the school would not confirm the names of the players.
Then on Tuesday, Texas Rivals affiliate Orangebloods.com reported that St. Louis-based agent Justin Bingman tweeted multiple times about having dinners with several different Longhorns players in March. The tweets, which have since been deleted upon discovery, stated that Bingman had dinner with linebackers Jordan Hicks and Steve Edmond on March 24.
The tweet about Edmond read:
"Had dinner with @SteveBigMoney33 last night, MLB for Texas. We all had a great time with many stories. #Longhorns"
And the tweet about Hicks said: