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Les Miles out at Kansas after sexual misconduct investigation
Just over a week ago, it was revealed that Les Miles showed sexually inappropriate behavior towards female students during his time at LSU. Miles was initially placed on a brief administration leave by Kansas, but shortly after an investigation into the allegations, the school and coach “mutually parted ways.”
Somehow, Miles still netted himself a severance package despite Kansas clearly having grounds to rightfully terminate him. Miles will still earn his normal March payment, in addition to $2 million shelled out over the next few years in accordance to what Miles’ normal pay schedule would have been.
AD Jeff Long was fired not long after Miles was let go. Seeing as AD and HC are often tied together, it makes sense that Long was also let go considering it was his decision to bring Miles on in the first place.
In the wake of Miles’ firing, WR coach and passing game coordinator Emmett Jones has taken over as interim HC. It’s unclear if Kansas will try to make a new hire for this season or just ride out the 2021 campaign with Jones at the helm. Jones has been at Kansas for the past two seasons.
Ohio State, Duke shut down football programs over COVID-19
New season, same issues. At least through this year’s spring programs, while the nation-wide vaccination is rolling out, it’s likely we will continue to see stories like this just as we did last season.
As for the Buckeyes, things seem less serious. The exact number of potential cases was not revealed, though the program still decided to shut down for just over a week. The good news, however, is Ohio State already has their eyes set on starting things back up on March 19th, which makes it seem like this temporary shutdown was more of a precaution than anything. It’s a worthwhile precaution to take since this is just spring ball.
Duke, on the other hand, seems to have a much bigger issue. 10 or so players tested positive and/or will need to isolate for the foreseeable future. As such, Duke has not been really able to try to plan ahead for a potential restart since there is no telling exactly how much worse things could get if one or two things go wrong.
Additionally, COVID issues have even spread to the Duke basketball team. As a result of a handful of positive cases within the basketball program, Duke’s famed basketball team will not be participating in the March Madness tournament.
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Indiana HC Tom Allen inks seven-year deal
It’s hard to blame a program like Indiana for wanting to cling on for dear life to anything that sort of resembles success. They will almost certainly never become a legit powerhouse, but Tom Allen has helped bring them to a stable, competitive level and they do not seem to risk letting that go any time soon.
Allen inked a seven-year deal with Indiana. He’s only been with the school for five years to begin with, but the program is looking to double that.
In his four seasons as the full-time head coach, Allen has led the Hoosiers to a 24-21 record. Over the past two years, specifically, Allen has earned a 14-7 record with two bowl game appearances and a nice little stay in the AP Top 25 during the 2020 season. The last HC to get Indiana ranked was Bill Mallory back in the early-to-mid ‘90s.
Clemson RB Travis Etienne crushes 40-yard dash with 4.40 flat
Yes, everyone already knows Travis Etienne is fast. The dude was a threat to score from anywhere every time he touched the ball at Clemson. Still, it's encouraging to see the numbers match up to the film.
For what it's worth, the only RB to run a faster 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine last year was Wisconsin's Jonathan Taylor. Granted, Taylor did so with 20-to-30 extra pounds on him, so it was a bit more impressive, but it's clear Etienne still hit a great time that confirms his devastating speed.
Though this time does little more than confirm what we know, do not be shocked if a team ends up using it as part of their rationalization for making Etienne the first RB off the board come draft weekend.
Michigan AD Warde Manuel continues to make it difficult to believe HC Jim Harbaugh’s job is actually safe. Earlier this offseason, Harbaugh’s deal was restructured as an “extension,” but one that lowered his salary and made it easier for the Wolverines to get out of the deal if they wanted to. Considering Harbaugh’s reign over Michigan has been milquetoast at best, and downright bad in 2020, it makes perfect sense that any and all word from Michigan’s leadership is just, “No, no, we actually believe in him, trust us!”
Though it was a shortened, difficult season, Harbaugh led Michigan to its first losing season since the final Brady Hoke season in 2014. The Wolverines went just 2-4 with losses to Michigan State, Indiana, Wisconsin, and Penn State. Neither Michigan State nor Penn State were good in 2020. Additionally, it took Michigan three overtimes to escape their game against Rutgers with a win. Rutgers!
Manuel can say all he wants about Harbaugh’s job actually being fine, but it’s hard to imagine Harbaugh will be around in Ann Arbor very long if things do not pick all the way back up next season.