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Sunday, July 21, 2019

College Football

Urban Meyer’s daughter shades Jim Harbaugh over comments

Nicki Meyer dad Urban

Urban Meyer’s daughter, Nicki, stood up for her father with some shade thrown at Jim Harbaugh on Twitter.

Harbaugh made a few headlines with some comments about Meyer on Tim Kawakami’s podcast this week. The Michigan Wolverines coach said Meyer has a great record but also is involved in controversies.

“Urban Meyer’s had a winning record. Really phenomenal record everywhere he’s been,” Harbaugh said. “But also, controversy follows everywhere he’s been.”

Harbaugh’s comments are factual, but some don’t like the source of the remarks and feel like it’s Harbaugh’s way of taking away from his 0-4 record as a head coach against the Ohio State Buckeyes. Nicki certainly thinks so.

She called Harbaugh’s remarks “a deflection strategy.”

The Meyer girls are always quick to come to Urban’s defense over social media, as we’ve seen many times in the past. Nicki’s not alone here as many other Buckeyes fans defended Meyer in response to Harbaugh.

Jim Harbaugh: Controversy follows Urban Meyer wherever he goes

Jim Harbaugh headset

Jim Harbaugh was never able to get the best of Urban Meyer when Meyer coached at Ohio State, but he clearly doesn’t feel that winning is everything when it comes to running a college football program.

In an appearance on “The TK Show” podcast with Tim Kawakami this week, Harbaugh spoke about everything Meyer was able to accomplish on the field at Ohio State. Meyer’s Buckeyes were 4-0 against Harbaugh and 7-0 overall against Michigan, but the Wolverines coach pointed out that “controversy” seemed to be a common theme with Meyer-led programs.

“Urban Meyer’s had a winning record. Really phenomenal record everywhere he’s been,” Harbaugh said. “But also, controversy follows everywhere he’s been.”

Unfortunately, that doesn’t matter for some people. Harbaugh went on to acknowledge that Michigan has always come up short since he was named head coach back in 2015.

“All you can be judged on is your record. What your record is overall. What your record is within your conference. What your record is with head-to-head matchups,” Harbaugh said, as transcribed by Kevin Harrish of Eleven Warriors. “I think you’ll find Ohio State is the only team with a better record, a better conference record than us (since I’ve been there) and has a better head-to-head matchup with us.”

While some viewed Harbaugh’s remarks as a swipe at Meyer, he was really just stating the obvious. Meyer had numerous players with character concerns during his time as the head coach at Florida, and more than two dozen players were arrested over a six-year span. He recruited and vouched for guys like Aaron Hernandez, who went on to murder multiple people.

More recently, Meyer was accused of ignoring domestic violence allegations against a member of his staff at Ohio State. That almost certainly contributed to his decision to step down following last season.

In terms of running a clean program, Harbaugh — and many other coaches — have Meyer beat. If you’re judging strictly on wins and losses, Meyer is one of the best to ever do it.

Nick Saban shares thoughts on idea he is difficult to work for

Nick Saban

Nick Saban is a hard-nosed coach who expects a lot from both his players and assistant coaches, and that is the main reason many have said he is difficult to work for. If that’s what it takes to achieve greatness, the six-time national champion has no problem with that reputation.

While meeting with reporters at SEC Media Days on Wednesday, Saban was asked if all the turnover on his coaching staff is a reflection of him being tough to work for. He said he finds it ironic that people say that and then coach their own programs with a similar style to his.

“You have to ask some of the people that work for me,” he said. “Always interesting that, you know, they may say that, but then when they get a job and they go do it, they do it exactly like we did it. So, I don’t know.

Saban noted how recruiting has become a 24/7 ordeal, and he said no part of the job with being a college coach is easy. He also explained how he tries to hold members of his staff accountable and to a high standard, which sometimes means doing things they don’t want to do. He compared having assistant coaches to raising children.

“So you have to make a choice and decision: You want to do it right, or you want to make everybody happy? No different than raising your children,” he said. “I go through this with (my wife) Terry when we’re raising our kids. She wanted to make them happy, and I wanted to make them do right.”

While his leadership style may not be for everyone, there’s no denying Saban has helped countless coaches advance their careers. Even someone like Lane Kiffin — who takes swipes at Saban any chance he gets — understands how much working for the Alabama legend helped him. That’s the trade-off when you work under him.

Texas A&M QB Kellen Mond: LSU players were cramping during 7-OT game

Kellen Mond

Get ready for some seemingly innocent comments from Kellen Mond to turn into bulletin-board material.

Speaking at SEC Media Days on Tuesday, Mond talked about the famous 7-overtime game between his Texas A&M Aggies and the LSU Tigers. Texas A&M won the game 74-72 on a successful two-point conversion following Mond’s sixth touchdown pass of the game.

Mond said this week that they could tell LSU was cramping towards the end.

Mond talking about his team’s playing condition compared to LSU’s will probably be a talking point when the teams meet in the upcoming season. They face each other in Death Valley on Nov. 30.

Steve Spurrier sees ‘huge year’ coming for Feleipe Franks

Feleipe Franks shush

Feleipe Franks took a big step forward last season for Florida. Former Gators head coach Steve Spurrier thinks Franks is due for an even bigger leap in the upcoming season.

Spurrier spoke at SEC Media Days on Tuesday and talked about Franks. He picked the junior quarterback to win the Heisman Trophy in the upcoming season and says he could have a “huge year.”

Franks only passed for nine touchdowns and eight interceptions as a freshman. He showed major improvement as a sophomore, throwing for 24 touchdowns and six interceptions, while rushing for seven scores.

Now that he has even more experience and will be in his second season under Dan Mullen, maybe Spurrier’s prediction will come true.

Texas QB Sam Ehlinger has good way of avoiding Twitter hate

Sam Ehlinger

If you think you can rattle Sam Ehlinger over Twitter, think again.

The Texas Longhorns quarterback spoke with the media Tuesday at Big 12 Media Days. He talked about why he isn’t bothered by hate sent his way on Twitter. It’s pretty simple: he doesn’t receive notifications about it.

Ehlinger received some reactions for his tweets supporting an amateurism reform bill, but apparently he didn’t see most of it.

He previously told The Athletic why it wouldn’t bother him. “I don’t really necessarily look at responses on Twitter. I don’t really care what homeboy with six followers has to say,” he said.

Ehlinger also has received some negativity this summer from both Baker Mayfield and Terry Bradshaw. Texas coach Tom Herman dismissed those comments as “irrelevant.”

Texas seems to be doing a good job of not letting any detractors bother them, allowing them to focus on their goals and not get derailed.

Mike Leach likes tweet about Texas Tech’s struggles since his firing

Mike Leach

Mike Leach is arguably Texas Tech’s most successful football coach in the last half century. His Red Raiders finished as the joint leader of the Big 12 South in 2008, the only time the school could stake a claim to anything resembling a conference title since 1976. That year, he led the team to an 11-2 record, only to be fired a year later under controversial circumstances.

Leach clearly has not forgotten his dismissal from Texas Tech, and still harbors some hard feelings. He made that clear Monday, when he liked a tweet that outlined the Red Raiders’ football program’s extensive struggles both before and after Leach’s tenure.

Leach has proven his worth since then, reviving a moribund Washington State program and finishing in the top ten nationally in 2018. It came after Texas Tech let him go over allegations that he mistreated Adam James, the son of former SMU star Craig James. Leach made clear how he feels about James last year, and this seems to be an indication of how he feels about Texas Tech. It’s fair to say he’s ended up with the last laugh.