• Let's put it in writing. A South Carolina legislator has introduced a proposal in the state House of Representatives that would require Clemson and South Carolina to play every season under state law, to the apparent consternation of both athletic departments. Not that anyone is suggesting that Clemson and South Carolina not play every year: The Tigers and Gamecocks have met every fall since 1909, the second-longest continuous streak of any I-A/FBS rivalry (the Minnesota-Wisconsin series is unbroken since the early 1890s), and Clemson athletic director Terry Don Phillips said he "cannot conceive of a realistic scenario" that would force an end to the series.
"You saw Texas and Texas A&M," said Rep. Nathan Ballentine, who introduced the proposal after uncovering a precedent in 1953, when the General Assembly overruled Southern Conference sanctions against Clemson to keep the rivalry alive. "That rivalry went by the wayside. Nebraska and Missouri dropped by the wayside [in 2010]. No one wants to see that happen here to our two universities where families enjoy the annual game, and it's great for our economy." [The State]
• I'm still here. Dorial Green-Beckham stole the headlines last week, but Missouri's biggest offseason addition may be a more familiar face: Offensive tackle Elvis Fisher, who was quietly granted a sixth year of eligibility Tuesday after missing the entire 2011 season with a torn patellar tendon in his knee. Before his injury, Fisher had started 40 consecutive games for the Tigers and picked up a few preseason All-Big 12 nods going into his senior year; if he's back at full speed this fall, he'll join South Carolina's T.J. Johnson (40 career starts) and Alabama All-American Barrett Jones (38 career starts) as the most experienced linemen in the SEC. [Columbia Tribune]
• Das Boot. Washington State linebacker C.J. Mizell has been forced to walk the plank after a weekend arrest for fourth-degree assault and second-degree criminal trespassing, both misdemeanors. According to police, Mizell — a regular starter last year until being overtaken by injuries — was booked on Sunday morning after punching a frat boy at the Delta Tau Delta house, then fleeing. Coach Mike Leach announced his dismissal on Tuesday.That probably shouldn't come as any surprise to Cougar fans: Mizell was already on thin ice with the previous coaching staff for (to quote the Spokane Spokesman-Review) "lacking work ethic" as a freshman, and (to quote former coach Paul Wulff) because he "chose to put his sweats on" at halftime of last November's loss to Washington. [Spokesman-Review, Associated Press]
• Orange = Green. The pending addition of Pittsburgh and Syracuse to the conference roster is expected to net the ACC at least $1 million to $2 million more per school in annual revenue, depending on renegotiations of the league's media rights deal with ESPN. As it stands, that contract is worth $1.86 billion over 12 years, or an average of about $13 million per year for each of the 12 current members. That number is projected to rise to $14 million or $15 million when the Panthers and Orange arrive next year — on par with annual payouts in the Big 12 ($15 million) and not far behind the current number in the SEC ($17 million), though expansion is likely to inflate that number, as well. The Pac-12 and Big Ten lead the pack at a reported $21 million per school per year. [Sports Business Journal]
• Parker! You're up for Parker. Kirk Ferentz didn't have to look far for his new defensive coordinator, tapping longtime defensive backs coach Phil Parker for a promotion after 13 years under retiring DC Norm Parker (no relation). Phil Parker is the first new coordinator Ferentz has hired on either side of the ball since arriving at Iowa in 1999 with both Norm Parker and Ken O'Keefe, who just resigned as offensive coordinator last week to take a job with the Miami Dolphins. [Cedar Rapids Gazette]
Quickly… The NFL releases the complete list of invitees to the NFL Combine. … Rivals ranks the top recruiters by conference. … Leaving Conference USA is going to cost Memphis $6.6 million, almost all of it in television rights fees. .. USC loses its second assistant coach in as many weeks to the NFL. … UNLV announces new coordinators on both sides of the ball. … Bill O'Brien settles in at Joe Paterno's old desk. … And Danny Hope doesn't know anything about a "gentleman's agreement" in Big Ten recruiting.
- South Carolina