Charlie Strong won’t let Texas players flash hook ‘em Horns sign yet

Charlie Strong Texas Hook 'em

Just four short years ago, Texas was competing for a BCS National Championship behind Heisman Trophy candidate Colt McCoy. Since that game, the Longhorns have compiled a record of 30-17, which is nothing to brag about for a team that was once considered a national powerhouse. Charlie Strong hopes to bring a winning tradition back to Austin.

In order to do so, Strong is trying to change the culture that Mack Brown left behind. According to ESPN.com’s Max Olson, that includes everything from making players walk to practice to not allowing them to throw up the “hook ‘em Horns” hand gesture.

“They’ll get it back one of these days,” Strong said.

Strong was a Longhorn for a matter of hours before he was already throwing up the “hook ‘em Horns” at his introductory press conference. In fact, same of his former Louisville players criticized him and called him fake because of it. The Horns gesture is one of the first things recruits do when they decide to play ball at Texas, but apparently Strong feels it needs to be earned.

Strong also makes players take the half-mile trek from their dorms to the practice facility on foot. They used to be able to catch a bus. He has put an open-door policy into effect and is often spotted chatting football with several players at a time inside his office.

Culture change is one thing, but I’m not sure how I would feel about being told to not use the “hook ‘em Horns” gesture. In my opinion, starting positions are something a player has to earn. Taking pride in your school is not.

Jameis Winston calls Clemson football stadium ‘our house’ during baseball trip


Jameis Winston has discovered a new benefit of playing two sports in college — he gets to take shots at his rivals during the football offseason. On Saturday, the Seminoles baseball team traveled to Clemson for a game. As the team’s bus was driving through the Clemson campus, Winston posted the photo you see above of Death Valley on Twitter with two words accompanying it.

“Our house.”

Florida State traveled to Clemson in the middle of the season last year when the Tigers were ranked No. 3 in the nation. The Seminoles won the game 51-14 and went on to dominate the rest of their schedule en route to a national championship. What can you really say in response to that? Death Valley is Winston’s house for the time being.

H/T Dr. Saturday

Keyshawn Johnson Jr. gets scholarship offers from Florida State, Ohio State

Keyshawn Johnson Jr.

Keyshawn Johnson Jr. is still a freshman and didn’t even play varsity football last year, but he’s already picking up some big time scholarship offers.

The youngster and son of former NFL wide receiver Keyshawn Johnson attended a recent camp with his Los Angeles-based traveling 7-on-7 football team. The camp must have been well attended by college coaches, because Keyshawn Jr. has picked up five scholarship offers in the past few days. The impressive part is that the offers came from some really strong programs.

Keyshawn Jr., who played freshmen football for at powerhouse Mission Viejo High School in Calif., last season, was offered by Florida State, Arizona State, SMU, Ohio State and Utah.

His dad tweeted that he plans to take unofficial visits to Clemson and Ohio State this spring:

Keyshawn Jr. is listed at 6-foot-1 and 185 pounds as a freshman. His dad actually moved from Calabasas to Mission Viejo to serve as an assistant coach for the varsity program last season. One of the program’s most famous alumnus is Mark Sanchez. It looks like the two had a workout together on Saturday:

H/T MaxPreps

Josh Rosen commits to UCLA with nothing but Bruins hats

Josh RosenUsually when football recruits make their college commitment announcements, they set out a number of hats on a table in front of them and pick the hat of the school they plan to attend.

St. John Bosco quarterback Josh Rosen, who is the No. 1-rated QB in the 2015 recruiting class, decided to put a spin on the hat game that made his plans much more definitive.

As the young QB made his announcement, he had someone pull three hats out and lay them on the table. All three were different varieties of UCLA hats. Rosen also put on a Bruins hat to make it four.

Rosen’s announcement that he was planning to commit to the Bruins was one of the worst-kept secrets for a few months. Though the announcement lacked surprise, I’m sure it was no less exciting for the Bruins program.

Top QB recruit Josh Rosen expected to commit to UCLA

Josh RosenJosh Rosen, one of the top quarterback recruits in the 2015 high school recruiting class, will announce his college commitment plans on Thursday, and he’s expected to choose UCLA.

Rosen is a quarterback at St. John Bosco in Bellflower, Calif., and he threw for 3,200 yards, 39 touchdowns and seven interceptions while leading Bosco to a 16-0 season as a junior in the fall. Rosen is ranked by Rivals as the No. 1 player in the state and No. 2 player in the country. He has scholarship offers from notable programs like Alabama, Florida State, Michigan and Notre Dame, but he was believed to be most strongly considering UCLA and Cal.

It’s been a long-believed secret that Rosen would be committing to UCLA. According to the OC Register’s Ryan Kartje, Rosen was among a group of quarterbacks throwing at UCLA’s practice field on Wednesday:

That’s a pretty strong sign about his ties to the Bruins.

If Rosen does commit to UCLA, that would give the two rival SoCal programs the top two quarterback recruits in the 2015 class; St. Bonaventure quarterback Ricky Town committed to USC in late January. He and Rosen are 1-2 by most recruiting sites.

Below is a highlight video of Rosen:

Image via YouTube

Johnny Manziel has shoes with Texas A&M and Oregon logos on them


Johnny Manziel has officially moved on from Texas A&M and is preparing for life in the NFL, but that isn’t going to stop him from showing allegiance to the Aggies. Manziel signed an endorsement deal with Nike earlier this month, which probably helps explain why he recently showed off a new pair of Oregon-themed sneakers on Instagram.

As many of you know, Nike founder and chairman Phil Knight attended Oregon. It’s the reason they get more than half a dozen insane new uniforms throughout the course of a season. Still, Manziel had enough loyalty to have “Johnny Football” and the Texas A&M logo stitched inside the tongue of his new kicks. What a guy.

As OregonLive.com also reminded us, Manziel and Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota have been friends since they were both being recruited by the Ducks in 2010. If Manziel starts getting shoes with Alabama logos on them, Aggies fans can go nuts.

Florida State’s national championship rings are pretty impressive

Florida-State-logoLed by 2013 Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston, the Florida State Seminoles went a perfect 14-0 (8-0 ACC) and claimed their third football national championship earlier this year.

Now that the hard part is over, it’s time to enjoy the spoils that come with being on top of the college football world. This includes the ever popular championship rings.

Courtesy of Mark Robinson, Florida State’s Director of Football Operations, we have a look at fancy keepsakes.

For comparison purposes, here are Alabama’s 2012 national championship rings.