Tue Aug 23 07:56am EDT
Making the morning rounds.
• They sang like 'Cane-aries. For the many of you (like me) wondering how seven non-Hurricane players implicated in the sprawling Nevin Shapiro scandal at Miami were cleared to play so quickly after the scandal broke last week, Dennis Dodd has your answer: They turned state's witness.
An NCAA spokesman not-so-subtly hinted to Dodd Monday that former Miami recruits Orson Charles (right, currently at Georgia), Andre Debose (Florida), Jeff Godfrey (Central Florida), Robert Marve (Purdue), Matt Patchan (Florida) and brothers Arthur and Bryce Brown (above, Kansas State) were all granted "limited immunity" that wiped away past violations if they agreed to cooperate in the NCAA's investigation of the dozens of current and former 'Canes also caught in Shapiro's web. "The enforcement staff has been given, by the membership, a pretty important investigative tool," the spokesman said, a tool at the NCAA's disposal "When we think that's really our only shot of getting that information." She was also clear that immunity is an extraordinary measure in an extraordinary case: Under normal circumstances, "You can't transfer to escape a penalty."
In the meantime, Miami has been granted no such favors: According to president Donna Shalala, the university is currently mulling the eligibility of 15 athletes, 14 of whom are likely football players, and at least ten of whom are likely starters. [CBS Sports, South Florida Sun-Sentinel]
• Today on "The Tigers' Court"... After successfully warding off a meeting with Baton Rouge police on Monday, senior quarterback Jordan Jefferson and three LSU teammates are expected to meet with investigators today about their role in a bar fight that hospitalized four people late last week. Jefferson, specifically, has been implicated by witnesses who claim he kicked a Marine in the head during the scuffle, and reports Monday night predicted multiple players would be hit with battery charges by the end of the week. [Associated Press, Times-Picayune]
• In Russell We Trust. Newly arrived quarterback Russell Wilson not only topped Wisconsin's first preseason depth chart Monday, but has also been named a co-captain after less than two months on campus since his transfer from N.C. State. "I think people just saw the leadership in him," sophomore left guard Travis Frederick told the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel after Monday's practice. "There is pure, raw leadership ability there. Ever since he came here he has worked tirelessly. I've seen him up there watching film. He picked up the offense in like two weeks." [Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel]
• Movin' on up. An 11-member study committee at Appalachian State voted Monday to recommend to ASU chancellor Ken Peacock that he begin pursuing a move from the Football Championship Subdivision to the Football Bowl Subdivision. In less bureaucratic terms: The Mountaineers are looking for a promotion.
App. State has played at the I-AA/FCS level since 1981, but has dominated over the last decade with six consecutive Southern Conference championships and three consecutive national title from 2005-07. Now, it may have Conference USA or even the Big East in its sights. [Winston-Salem Journal]
• The Rap Sheet, Jayhawk Edition. Kansas linebacker Benjamin Heeney, a 19-year-old true freshman, faces a September hearing after being arrested last month on one count of DUI and one count of racing on campus. Heeney pleaded not guilty to both counts on July 29, and a spokesman said discipline had been handled internally. [Lawrence Journal World]
More recently, sophomore running back Deshaun Sands was arrested Saturday night on an outstanding warrant for missing a June court date on a disturbing the peace citation he picked up in April. [Lawrence Journal World]
Quickly… The NCAA is putting off a decision about whether to allow high school highlights on the Longhorn Network, perhaps until the network actually gets a carrier. … Former California and Florida defensive end Chris Martin has landed at a Texas junior college, his third campus in less than a year. … Oregon loses a backup cornerback. … Michigan loses an incoming lineman. … Florida gets its backup quarterbacks in the mix. … Dan Persa is still limping, but insists he'll be ready for Boston College. … Utah State is making good with Polynesians. … Even Iowa's governor is dissing the new Cy-Hawk Trophy. … And sorry, Miami press corps, but you're making us all look bad here.