December 06, 2010
Making the morning rounds.
• We hardly knew ye. The season's first early departure for the draft: Ole Miss defensive tackle Jerrell Powe, once the poster child for the academically-challenged jock during his winding, three-year odyssey to enroll in Oxford after being ranked as one of the top D-line recruits in the nation in 2005. He finally made it to campus in 2008 and leaves with six sacks and 21.5 tackles for loss to his name over three seasons. He may also leave with a degree, according to coach Houston Nutt, who said Powe, now 24, is "really close to graduation, and I hope he reaches that goal." In the meantime, go get paid, son. [Clarion-Ledger]
• Speaking of getting paid... With the annual Harbaugh-to-NFL chatter in full swing and Michigan fans tracking his every move, Stanford is stepping up to bring Jim Harbaugh back for another BCS run next fall: "We have a proposal in front of Jim and he's indicated he plans to accept it," athletic director Bob Bowlsby said Sunday. "He's got this year and four more on his contract. I expect that he will be our coach in the foreseeable future." If Harbaugh and projected No. 1 pick Andrew Luck are both en tow again in 2011, expect the Cardinal to be a chic preseason favorite with still-loaded Oregon coming to Palo Alto. [San Jose Mercury News]
• . Another Pac-10 coach who isn't going anywhere: Washington State's Paul Wulff, who will get a fourth year in Pullman despite a 2-25 Pac-10 record over the first three. The Cougars are awful, yes, but not quite as awful this year: They dramatically cut their average margin of defeat, upset Oregon State in Corvallis and rallied late to push Holiday Bowl-bound Washington to the brink of overtime in Saturday's Apple Cup. [Spokane Spokesman-Review]
• Meet the new boss. No more mystery in Colorado: Newly hired head coach Jon Embree was making the rounds in Boulder Sunday night, along with his offensive coordinator, CU legend Eric Bieniemy. The pair is expected to be introduced later today. Minnesota fans are also planning to meet their new head coach, Northern
Illinois' Jerry Kill, though the early returns suggest he's got a little
work to do to get the home crowd in his corner. [Boulder Daily Camera, Minneapolis Star-Tribune]
• Leave them kids alone. The NFL Players' Association handed down a nine-month suspension Friday to agent Gary Wichard, whose agency has been directly linked by a series of Yahoo! Sports reports to improper travel and other benefits on behalf of North Carolina defensive tackle Marvin Austin (right), as well as possibly employing UNC assistant coach John Blake as a runner. Austin was suspended prior to the season and eventually exiled from the team for all manner of largesse that likely extends beyond Wichard. [Yahoo! Sports]
The NFLPA also decertified USC's baby agent, Teague Egan, who has no clients, broke NCAA rules and shouldn't have been certified before picking up his undergraduate degree in the first place. It probably doesn't help that he also seems like a spoiled jerk, though we are talking about an organization that deals with agents as a matter of course, so it kind of comes with the territory.
• OK, we're finished. Breathe easy, Big East: The Big Ten announced Sunday that it's closed the book on expansion for now, content to settle in with the new 12-team format for a while. Per the conference's official statement: "Although the conference will continue to monitor the intercollegiate landscape, it will not be actively engaged in conference expansion for the foreseeable future and does not expect to be proactively seeking new members." [BigTen.org]
Quickly… Two men were stabbed, two police officers were injured and three were arrested in a massive brawl involving 50 to 75 people outside the Rose Bowl before the USC-UCLA game. … Greg Davis says reports of his demise have been greatly exaggerated. … Chris Ault congratulates his team after its win over Boise State. … Oregon's longtime play-by-play man gets a little misty over the Civil War win that sent the Ducks to the BCS title game. … A week-by-week recap of Oregon's uniform combinations this year. … A suggestion for the perfect rivalry trophy for Iowa-Nebraska. … And whoever stole the Lee Corso mascot head from the GameDay set would make Erin Andrews very, very happy if they gave it back.
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Matt Hinton is on Twitter: Follow him @DrSaturday.