Video: This is how Penn State develops their 'edge' under Franklin
At first glance, nothing about Penn State's first workout session under James Franklin and Dwight Galt looks any different than what other programs across the country are doing at this time.
However, in order to create an edge, the end of the workout features two players fighting over a tire. There's a very specific reason why that event is held to the end of the workout.
“Control your breathing,” Franklin told the guys at the end of the workout. “We do that at the end because anybody can do it when they’re fresh. We want to see how you guys are going to compete when times are tough."
"How are you going to compete when you’re tired? This is about mental and physical toughness.”
If you don't have something in your workouts with a competitive edge factor, you may want to consider adding something like this. Makes a lot of sense, especially for a new staff trying to create a new identity.
Mike Gundy goes off on a classic Twitter rant
Late Thursday afternoon, Scott let this tweet fly:
Something tells me Mike Gundy might drop some knowledge shortly re this ten second proposal. Enjoy— FootballScoop Staff (@footballscoop) February 13, 2014
Channeling his 40-year-old self, Gundy proceeded to rip it into the rule change, 140 characters at a time.
The no huddle, fast tempo style has changed the game of CFB. Our sport has exploded in popularity with high scoring games & packed stadiums.— Mike Gundy (@CoachGundy) February 13, 2014
College Football is constantly evolving. Coaches have to make adjustments based on their team, their talents and their opponents.— Mike Gundy (@CoachGundy) February 13, 2014
The 10-second rule is like asking basketball to take away the shot clock - Boring!. It’s like asking a blitzing linebacker to raise his hand— Mike Gundy (@CoachGundy) February 13, 2014
Why change our sport at the peak of its popularity— Mike Gundy (@CoachGundy) February 13, 2014
Some of the responses were just as good, if not better, than the original.
RT @CoachGundy: DON'T COME AFTER UP-TEMPO OFFENSES, WHICH HAS DONE EVERYTHING RIGHT. COME AFTER ME! I'M A MAN!— Ben Kercheval (@BenKercheval) February 13, 2014
I think the only way to settle this tempo debate is a good, old-fashioned street fight. Choose sides/weapons carefully, fellas.— David Ubben (@davidubben) February 13, 2014
Mike Gundy on a Twitter rant! Looking at you, Bert.— Mark Ennis (@Mengus22) February 13, 2014
Mike Gundy won twitter today.— Richan Gaskins (@CoachGSeatbelt) February 13, 2014
If Gundy drops the mic w #Karma twitter might implode— FootballScoop Staff (@footballscoop) February 13, 2014
How much 'hard data' does the NCAA have on the 10-second rule? None
We've had coach reaction to the NCAA's proposed 10-second rule, as well as a story on where the rule comes from. But we haven't spoken to the people that will ultimately implement the rule (if it passes, which remains doubtful): the officials.
Dennis Dodd of CBSSports.com spoke to Rogers Redding, national coordinator of the College Football Officials organization. He's the Mike Pereira of college football, the spokesman for all men in stripes. If anyone could explain the rationale behind such a large piece of legislation, it would be him.
Surely, there would be some real numbers proving that this rule is a necessary step to make the game a safer place, right?
No. This is the NCAA, after all.
"I think it's fair to say it's one of those things that's been growing," Redding told CBSSports.com. "It hasn't been a huge surge. It's kind of one those things that was floating in the background and it kind of came to a head. ...
"I think it's fair to say there's not really much hard data on this."
Art Briles had an interesting suggestion, though I'm not sure it accomplishes the aim the committee was looking for. "If they're going to change anything in my mind, change it to a 35-second [play] clock," Briles said. "People don't want to come sit in the stands and watch the clock move."
Ultimately, proponents of the rule are looking for a way to get gassed defenders out of the game. Turns out the committee has noticed all those players faking injury to stop the game, and their cries have been heard.
"If you've got a [defender] who's [tired] and can't get out of the game, we don't want to get in a situation where people are saying he's flopping to the ground," Redding said. "This is an opportunity from the standpoint of the rules committee to make it a little more fair."
Only one thing is certain at this point: this fight is just beginning.
Tony Gibson is the new defensive coordinator at West Virginia
Dana Holgorsen didn't have to look far to find his new defensive coordinator. He just walked down the hall.
FootballScoop reported Wednesday night that West Virginia would tap Gibson to be its defensive coordinator in 2014 and that the Mountaineers would replace outgoing coordinator Keith Patterson by hiring a defensive line coach.
A native of Van, W. Va., Gibson played at Glenville State and coached previously in the Mountain State at Gilmer County High School (1995), Glenville State (1996) and West Virginia (1999-07) and spent the 2011 season at nearby Pittsburgh. He followed Rich Rodriguez to Michigan in 2008 and then joined his original staff at Arizona in 2012 before returning to Morgantown as safeties coach in 2013.
Gibson can help West Virginia most by just sticking around. He'll be the Mountaineers' fourth defensive coordinator in as many years and, as a well-liked coach with the aforementioned ties to the area, he's an important piece to a staff that needs to build continuity.
In his first year back on the staff, Gibson helped West Virginia's secondary post improvements in yards per attempt allowed, opponent completion percentage, opponent passer rating, touchdown-to-interception ratio and passing defense.
Video: The process to succes
The past few months have been extremely busy for the University of the Cumberlands (NAIA - KY).
The Patriots made their first ever appearance in the NAIA national title game (a loss to Grand View), had their head coach leave for a D-III job, and hired a successful high school coach, and alum in Matt Rhymer to lead the program into the future.
As you can see in the video, and hear in coach Rhymer's voice, reaching the national title game is no longer the goal at The Cumberlands. They'll only be satisfied when they bring home the hardware, proving that they are the top team in all of NAIA.
That doesn't happen without a process, and this clip is a glimpse into what coach Rhymer's looks like.
The driving force behind the 10-second rule: Bret Bielema
House of Cards is one of my favorite shows. I think it's amazing television.
For those of you who haven't seen it (and considering it airs exclusively on Netflix, that's the vast majority of you) here's House of Cards in a nutshell: Kevin Spacey plays Frank Underwood, a Congressman from South Carolina that ruthlessly outworks and outmaneuvers his rivals in an effort to arrange Washington's political chessboard in an effort to serve his most important constituent: himself. Underwood is a master at playing people right in front of their faces without them even suspecting they've been played.
With season two of House of Cards debuting tomorrow, I've been thinking about Underwood a lot lately. It turns out Underwood has a college football counterpart, and his name is Bret Bielema.
The Arkansas head coach is all-in against the tempo offenses that have engulfed the sport in the past two years. Wednesday's proposed rule change has been dubbed by some as the Saban-Bielema Rule, but Bielema has beaten the drum harder than anyone.
He proposed a 15-second substitution period after every first down to the NCAA last June. "Not to get on the coattails of some of the other coaches, there is a lot of truth that the way offensive philosophies are driven now, there's times where you can't get a defensive substitution in for 8, 10, 12 play drives," Bielema said at the time. "That has an effect on safety of that student-athlete, especially the bigger defensive linemen, that is really real."
He was at it again during SEC media days in July. "All I know is this: there are times when an offensive player and a defensive player are on the field for an extended amount of time without a break," he said. "You cannot tell me that a player after play five is the same player that he is after play 15. If that exposes him to a risk of injury, then that's my fault. I can't do anything about it because the rules do not allow me to substitute a player in whether I'm on offense or defense.
"The problem that people have is you look at it just from an offensive or defensive point of view. I'm looking at it from a head coach's point of view, that the personal well-being and safety of my players is paramount."
Like a Capitol Hill veteran, Bielema has framed his war against tempo offenses as a safety issue. Player safety is the "our children are the future" issue of college football, partly because it is an important issue, and partly because no one can disagree with it without risking political suicide. And Bielema has been very good about transitioning the conversation to his version of player safety, a version that just so happens to benefit him competitively.
Bielema has built his career on his brand of ground-and-pound football, and anything that slows down the wave of tempo offenses - on the field and in recruiting - is good for him. The rest of the SEC is getting faster by the year, but morphing to match everyone else is not a realistic option for Bielema. He's dug in. So he has to change the rules. In the adapt-or-die nature of college football, this is his path to survival.
Fast forward to Monday. Arkansas held a Monday morning press conference to introduce new defensive coordinator Robb Smith. The press conference was in the morning because Bielema had a flight to catch.
Bielema on early Smith presser:"I have a plane to catch. (NCAA) rules committee meeting in Indy that takes place the next three days."— Thomas Murphy (@TomMurphyADG) February 10, 2014
Hold on a minute. There are two FBS coaches with voting privileges on the NCAA's football rules committee , Air Force's Troy Calhoun and Louisiana-Monroe's Todd Berry. Bielema was in Indianapolis purportedly to represent the interests of the AFCA.
Let's recap what we have here. A coach that's submitted legislation before and has been outspoken about formatting the game to fit his style - Arkansas was 118th in total plays in 2013 - is not on the rules committee but manages to get a seat behind closed doors with the committee.
So who was Bielema ultimately stumping for in Indianapolis?
Cincinnati's Tommy Tuberville said about pace-of-play proposal: "This came out of left." Said it was never discussed at AFCA. Not for it.— Ralph D. Russo (@ralphDrussoAP) February 13, 2014
Voila. Bielema's master plan worked.
Can confirm Nick Saban & Bret Bielema were in the room (but not voters) for the rules committee discussion that produced 10-second proposal.— Stewart Mandel (@slmandel) February 13, 2014
The NCAA Football Rules Committee formally recommended assessing a five-yard penalty for any team that snaps the ball before the 29-second mark on the play clock on all snaps except in the final two minutes of each half.
The rule is still a ways away from formal adoption, but this was Bielema's Frank Underwood moment. In a world that was bending away from his worldview, Bielema campaigned and lobbied to bend it back. For the coach of a 3-9 team, this was the only move he had to play. And, so far, he's played it to perfection.
Business is booming in college football. Here's why
For those in the media and advertising industries, Nielsen is the Bible. Nielsen's media research and television ratings are gospel across the media industry, and their figures direct billions of dollars in advertising cash flow as large corporations attempt to reach the audiences they want to influence. That's why networks can afford to shell out billion-dollar contracts.
Last week, Nielsen released its annual year-end media report for sports, and it's packed full of information that everyone in college football should know. Business is booming in college football, and this report details why.
Let's start with the most obvious, television viewers for each major American sport's largest event from the past year.
Super Bowl XLVIII: Seattle Seahawks vs. Denver Broncos - 112.2 million
NBA Finals Game 7: Miami Heat vs. San Antonio Spurs - 26.3 million
BCS National Championship: Florida State vs. Auburn - 25.6 million
NCAA Basketball Championship: Louisville vs. Michigan - 23.4 million
World Series Game 6: Boston Red Sox vs. St. Louis Cardinals - 18 million
Daytona 500 - 16.7 million
Kentucky Derby - 16.2 million
The Masters - 14.7 million
Stanley Cup Finals Game 6: Chicago Blackhawks vs. Boston Bruins - 8.6 million
What does this tell us about American culture? First, Americans love them some NFL. The Super Bowl drew more viewers than the biggest events of the NBA, college football, college basketball, Major League Baseball and NASCAR put together. The NFL also crushes the Oscars, the Emmys, the Grammys, American Idol and whatever else the entertainment industry can muster. The NFL is an entire continent full of 800-pound gorillas.
Aside from that, Americans like winner-take-all sporting events. LeBron, Tim Duncan and the drama of a Game 7 edged out the BCS championship for the second spot, and Louisville's thrilling win over Michigan came in fourth. Other than the win-or-go-home aspect of the NFL playoffs, those were the only sporting events to crack 20 million viewers.
Outside of the BCS National Championship, bowl games were the most-watched games in 2013.
2. Rose Bowl: Michigan State vs. Stanford - 18.6 million
3. Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma vs. Alabama - 16.3 million
4. Orange Bowl: Clemson vs. Ohio State - 11.4 million
5. Fiesta Bowl: Central Florida vs. Baylor - 11.3 million
Earlier this week, the NCAA reported that the SEC was once again college football's highest-drawing conference. And, once again, the SEC was also college football's top draw on television.
1. SEC - 9.7 million average viewers
2. Big Ten - 7 million
3. ACC - 5.3 million
4. Big 12 - 4.2 million
5. Notre Dame - 4 million
6. Pac-12 - 3.9 million
Nielsen also provided a nice look at which schools had the largest local fanbases, a term they defined as a percentage of the population that attended, watched or listened to a game over the past 12 months.
1. Ohio State (Columbus) - 66 percent
2. Alabama (Birmingham) - 65 percent
3. Arkansas (Little Rock) - 58 percent
4. Tennessee (Knoxville) - 56 percent
5. Oklahoma (Oklahoma City) - 55 percent
Each of those five schools has something in common. They're large state institutions without much local professional competition (three of the five have no local NFL competition at all) in mid-sized markets. It's much easier for Oklahoma to dominate Oklahoma City than it is for Stanford to own San Francisco.
Next, let's look chunk of fresh meat advertisers lock their teeth on, Twitter. According to Nielsen, here are the total tweets pecked out from each of America's largest sporting events.
Super Bowl XLVIII: Seattle Seahawks vs. Denver Broncos - 25.3 million
BCS National Championship: Florida State vs. Auburn - 4.4 million
NBA Finals: Miami Heat vs. San Antonio Spurs - 3.81 million*
NCAA Basketball Championship: Louisville vs. Michigan - 3.3 million
Kentucky Derby - 3 million
The Masters - 800,000
World Series: Boston Red Sox vs. St. Louis Cardinals - 716,000
Daytona 500 - 500,000
Stanley Cup Finals: Chicago Blackhawks vs. Boston Bruins - 466,000*
* - averaged on a per game basis
Again, the NFL is completely untouchable but, other than that, nothing drew more social engagement than the BCS championship. The BCS National Championship inspired more tweets over its three-and-a-half hours than all six World Series games combined. College football is a community event, in person and on television, and that's valuable to advertisers.
Speaking of advertisers, here were the five biggest advertisers for college football.
2. Taco Bell
4. Verizon Wireless
5. Home Depot
AT&T, Taco Bell and Verizon spread their spending out evenly across the sporting landscape, but Aflac and Home Depot invested their largest advertising dollars on college football. Home Depot basically funds College GameDay's entire budget. In the days of massive television contracts that foot the bills for new facilities and eight-figure contracts, these companies indirectly pay many coaches' salaries.
Lastly, here is a demographic breakdown of college football viewers for the 2013-14 bowl season. When advertisers look at which sports to buy, this is their scouting report.
Let's take a look at that last part, because that's what every advertiser is after: money. And college sports fans have a lot of it. In fact, college sports has more fans earning $100,000 or more a year than any sport other than golf and hockey. Add in the fact that college football's audience dwarfs golf, hockey and college basketball, and you can see why Saturday football is the most valuable advertising real estate on the market outside of the NFL.
NHL - 33 percent of fans earning $100,000 or more a year
Golf - 27 percent
College basketball - 27 percent
College football - 25 percent
NFL - 25 percent
Major League Baseball - 21 percent
Soccer - 20 percent
NBA - 18 percent
Motor sports - 14 percent
No huddle coaches weigh in on the new NCAA rules proposal
The newly proposed rule change to allow defenses 10 seconds to sub after every snap really struck a chord with a lot of coaches, especially within the no huddle coaching community, last night.
Rich Rodriguez took to Twitter to vent some of his frustration, and to be honest, I have to agree with everything that he put out there.
So I hear the football rules committee wants to slow the game down and make you wait ten seconds to snap--and penalty is delay of game!#wow— Rich Rodriguez (@CoachRodAZ) February 12, 2014
When you snap the ball has always been a fundamental edge for the offense- what's next-- 3 downs like Canada?#LetsGetBoring— Rich Rodriguez (@CoachRodAZ) February 12, 2014
Fundamental advantage for defense- pre snap movement- maybe that should be reviewed? #WhoMakesTheseRules— Rich Rodriguez (@CoachRodAZ) February 12, 2014
None of the coaches I've talked to knew about the new rule proposal regarding waiting ten seconds to snap the ball --wondering#HiddenAgenda?— Rich Rodriguez (@CoachRodAZ) February 13, 2014
Rodriguez and Hugh Freeze both added that if it is infact a safety issue, show coaches some data to support it. And if that is the case, Rodriguez makes the case that no huddle teams should be getting hurt more in practice? That's obviously not the case.
Mike Leach also brought up a good point in an ESPN article published last night, saying that football has always been a game of creativity and strategy, and the best coaches throughout history have always found a way to adjust.
"First off, I doubt it will pass, second, it’s ridiculous. All this tinkering is ridiculous." Leach explained.
"I think it deteriorates the game. It’s always been a game of creativity and strategy. So anytime someone doesn’t want to go back to the drawing board or re-work their solutions to problems, then what they do is to beg for a rule. I think it’s disgusting.”
Then, Leach provided a suggestion for coaches who are in favor of the rule change.
“My suggestion is rather than spending a bunch of time coming up with a bunch of really stupid rules, spend that time coaching harder. Worry about your own team and try to make your product better rather than trying to change the game so you don’t have to do anything.”
This will be a hot button topic all offseason, and considering the widespread impact it could have on the game, we'll continue to keep you updated on the various stances and opinions. As it sits right now, I'm standing firmly behind Rich Rod, Leach and the rest of the no huddle community and don't see that changing.
A lot more quality content on the subject from Rich Rod, Freeze, Leach (and others) in ESPN's column, which can be read here, and we've included a few more quotes from coaches on the subject below.
The only thing risking injury in an up tempo football game is the defense's pride! Nut up, it's football!— Bob Stitt (@CoachBobStitt) February 13, 2014
Baylor's Art Briles on the proposed rule change to limit hurry-up: "If the food tastes good, don't change the recipe."— George Schroeder (@GeorgeSchroeder) February 12, 2014
We got pulled over shortly after and was issued a delay of game for going to fast..#Tempo— Chad Morris (@coachchadmorris) February 13, 2014