Nebraska Red Out Shirt Angered Texas

Take a good look at that shirt now because you probably won’t see it again. The Web site www.redoutshirt.com came up with that shirt to sell to Nebraska fans ahead of the big game with Texas this weekend. Nebraska is going with a Red Out in Lincoln to get their fans together to support the team.

The fans have been looking for revenge ever since last year’s Big 12 title game which Texas won on a last-second field goal. The :01 on the shirt refers to the play before the kick where Colt McCoy scrambled and threw an incompletion. Time appeared to have expired, but an extra second was added to the clock and Texas won the game.

As the Austin American-Statesman points out via College Football Talk, the Texas Longhorns trademark department got after the site for using the Longhorns logo on the shirt. The Horns logo is obviously a huge seller for the university, but my guess is the upside down logo is what really pissed them off. If you don’t believe me, just ask Vince Young what an upside down horns can do to a man.

San Diego St. Screwed by BYU Home Cooking in Replay Booth

San Diego St. opened up the checkbook two years ago after suffering through an entire decade without a winning record. They brought in Brady Hoke from Ball St. who went 4-8 in his first year. Under Hoke, the Aztecs appear to improve drastically this season and they’re now 3-2. Sadly, if it weren’t for two key calls wrongly going against them, they could be 5-0.

The Wiz of Odds showed us that a block in the back sprung Missouri’s T.J. Moe for a game-winning 68-yard touchdown in the final minute against San Diego State last month, making the Aztecs 2-1. Our man Jay Christensen also points out that San Diego St. was victimized by another missed call in an egregious case of home cooking.

Down 17-14 late in the 3rd quarter, the Aztecs forced a fumble at the 25 yard line. BYU running back J.J. Di Luigi (great name) was ruled down by the refs so Brady Hoke challenged the call. Replays (and the picture above) clearly show that Di Luigi lost the ball before being ruled down, but for some reason the replay booth upheld the call. Now we know why.

One of the people working the replay booth was a BYU employee! They actually had BYU video coordinator Chad Bunn reviewing plays, and of course he was not fair. Thanks to the call that wasn’t overturned, the Cougars were able to keep the ball and went on to score a touchdown.

San Diego State scored in the 4th to pull within three, and their defense didn’t allow another point to the Cougars. They lost 24-21 falling to 3-2, but it’s safe to say they could have easily won this game. The good news is the replay workers were suspended by the Mountain West. I say they shouldn’t ever be allowed to work another game.

Rebel Black Bear Is New Ole Miss Mascot

Much like the Confederate flag hanging atop the South Carolina statehouse, moving on from Colonel Reb was long over due for Ole Miss. After being without a mascot for the past seven or so years, Ole Miss finally decided on a new mascot to represent the Rebels. Based on a student vote, the Rebel Black Bear was selected. The Rebel Land Shark unfortunately came in second, while “Hoddy Toddy,” a saying exchanged between Ole Miss fans, came in third. Here are pics of the Rebel Black Bear thanks to the Clarion-Ledger:

If you ask me, Ole Miss is just biting off other schools. Cal, Baylor, Missouri State, Maine, Brown, Montana, and Northern Colorado all already have Bear mascots. In contrast, how many sharks do you know of? And no, the team from Any Given Sunday doesn’t count. They really blew it if you ask me, but anything is better than Colonel Reb. The next step is eliminating the whole “Rebels” nickname altogether.

UCLA Football Showing Little Improvement Under Rick Neuheisel

There have been some really nice moments for UCLA’s football team this year. They beat Houston at home, knocking out two quarterbacks in the process. Just two weeks ago, Rick Neuheisel got his signature win with the team — a one-sided victory in Austin. But the team is still 3-3, and the biggest issue to me is the way this team is playing, and the embarrassing nature of its losses.

UCLA fell to Cal on Saturday 35-7, and they lost 35-0 to Stanford earlier in the year. Losing 70-7 to the NorCal schools is simply unacceptable, and that goes for any team in the Pac-10. The Bruins have no passing game whatsoever, and they moved to the pistol offense which seems to be effective, but they don’t have the right quarterback for the system. The offensive line hasn’t provided necessary protection, and the receivers can’t create separation. The defense is solid with some good playmakers, but it’s hard to have success if they’re on the field constantly and starting off in poor field position.

There was a lot of optimism when Neuheisel took over the program. He went out and stunned Tennessee on national TV in his first game, backing up all his talk. The team has had strong recruiting classes according to most rankings, and Neuheisel has talked up the program a good deal in the media. The problem is the results haven’t been there on the field on a consistent basis.

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Former Agent Josh Luchs Reveals Ugly Side of Paying College Football Players

SI has a wonderful story front page on their Web site entitled “Confessions of an agent.” The investigative piece, which is definitely worth your time, will also be featured in the October 18th issue of the magazine. In the article, Josh Luchs talks about how he got into the business of being a sports agent, which college football players he recruited, how he did it, and what made him get out of the business.

If you want to do the hit list of players, it’s quite extensive. Being based on the West Coast and from LA, UCLA players were one of Luchs’ biggest targets to recruit and some of the players he confirmed paying.

One of Luchs’ biggest points goes against Nick Saban’s “pimp” comment, as he contends many players have their hands out asking for money. Luchs justified paying players when he was younger because he was trying to get clients and felt he was helping out the players and/or their families. As he got older, he got tired of trying to be close with college kids and partying with athletes, and decided he wanted to do things without paying players.

Luchs began working for agent Gary Wichard, who has been targeted in the North Carolina investigation, but the two had a falling out and Luchs lost a lawsuit against Wichard. After being suspended by the NFLPA for a year because he withheld a player agent check from Wichard to use in the court case, he decided to get out of the business.

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Julio Jones Had Surgery on Broken Hand but Might Not Miss Any Time

As if losing to South Carolina on Saturday wasn’t already bad enough for Alabama, they found out that wide receiver Julio Jones also broke his hand in the game. Coach Nick Saban announced that Jones broke the hand in the first half of the game and underwent surgery today. Jones had a plate and screw in the hand, and according to the AP, Saban said Jones’ ability to play on Saturday at home against Ole Miss depends on his pain tolerance.

If Jones broke his hand in the first half of the game like they’re saying, then I’m guessing he’ll be able to play this weekend. Jones made one of the sweetest catches I’ve seen this year, plucking a laser from Greg McElroy out of the air just before halftime. His catch resulted in a touchdown and made it 21-9. Considering that catch came a minute before halftime, I’m guessing he had already broken his hand yet he still made the grab.

On top of the touchdown catch before halftime, Jones had three second half catches. If he can make plays like that with a broken hand, I’m guessing he’ll be able to play Saturday against Ole Miss. They’re saying it will depend on his pain tolerance, but the pressure to suit up will be great. This is the SEC schedule now, not San Jose State.

Photo Credit: Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images

Tim Brewster Pissed at Bret Bielama for Classless Two Point Conversion Attempt

The winner of the annual Minnesota-Wisconsin game receives one of the best trophies in sports — Paul Bunyan’s Axe. Minnesota coach Tim Brewster likely wanted to make good use of the axe by taking a swipe at Wisconsin coach Bret Bielama with it after the game.

In case you missed it, the Badgers beat up the Gophers 41-23 in Madison. Wisconsin had just gone up 41-16 on James White’s second touchdown run of the game. Instead of kicking the extra point, they decided to go for a two point conversion. Yes, a team up by 25 with under seven minutes left in the game decided to go for two.

Minnesota coach Tim Brewster was pissed about the decision, rightfully feeling like Bielama was trying to run up the score. Bielama explained that his coach’s chart told him to go for two when up by 25. Uhh, sure, whatever dude. A chart will tell you to go for two when you’re up by one and there’s three minutes left in a game. Any reasonable human being recognizes that going for two up 25 with seven minutes left is excessive.

As if his decision wasn’t bad enough, the Badgers were already covering the 21.5 point spread. Bielama, you’re out of excuses. Next time maybe you’ll do the right thing and kick the extra point instead. Brewster might not be there when you guys meet next year, but the players will be, and they might remember.

Photo Credit: Star Tribune