July 23 News: Steve Spurrier Cuts Bizarre Promo on Retirement

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Steve Spurrier may be nearing the twilight of his illustrious career, but the Head Ball Coach is insistent the end isn’t here for him yet. To that end, he called a press conference Wednesday that amounted to little more than a pro wrestling promo.

It was decidedly heel (read: “bad guy,” for those unversed in carnie speak) in its tone, with Spurrier playing the part of Bobby “The Brain” Heenan to Mark Bradley’s “Mean” Gene Okerlund.

Bradley, a columnist for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, did little more than others around college football last week when he speculated about the future of South Carolina. Spurrier himself invited such speculation at the end of last season, when offhandedly mentioned coaching the Gamecocks for only two or three more years.

Bradley wrote this response, which makes great points.

Spurrier’s press conference intimated others around the SEC are now using that against South Carolina in recruiting, though Wednesday’s tone was decidedly more harsh than the HBC’s candor offered last week at SEC media days.

On Wednesday, Spurrier described that candor as “heehaw[ing]” around the topic.

Obviously the questions and the early eulogizing of his career — which, admittedly, I am somewhat guilty of — got to Spurrier. But for someone as rightly beloved for his quips and sense of humor, sometimes at the expense of others, Spurrier came off thin-skinned, as Bradley just as rightly addresses.

Spurrier’s airing of grievances come on a day SEC counterpart Gus Malzahn sustained criticism for his complaints on ESPN about the current Playoff structure, ditto Art Briles for his “brand name” lamentations.

Former 4-Star OL Recruit Jordan Poland Dismissed from Arizona

Daniel Berk, The Arizona Daily Star

Jordan Poland, a former 4-star offensive line prospect and one-time commit to USC, was dismissed from Arizona Wednesday.

Poland was arrested by Tucson Police and is still being held. Information on the nature of charges against him is limited, though Rich Rodriguez issued a statement along with Arizona athletic director Greg Byrne, is published at the above Daily Star link.

Chattanooga Dominates Preseason SoCon Polls

Gene Henley, The Chattanooga Times Free Press

Defending Southern Conference champion Chattanooga is a heavy favorite to repeat in 2015, and two-time Offensive Player of the Year, quarterback Jacob Huesman, is projected to win a third.

NFL draftniks will want to keep tabs on Huesman, a candidate to breakout as a hot 2016 prospect. He’s a dual-threat playmaker, coming off a 2014 campaign in which he broke the 1,000-yard mark rushing, but his passing as progressed each of his three seasons running the Mocs offense.

At 6-foot-2, 220 pounds, Huesman has the size to play quarterback professionally. And, if that’s not in the cards, he has collegiate experience at wide receiver.

There’s a lot of time between now and the 2016 NFL draft. In the interim, Huesman is a leading candidate for the 2015 Walter Payton Award, and Chattanooga is a team to watch in the FCS championship hunt.

The Top-10 Ranked Prospects in the Big Ten the Last 10 Years

Sean Merriman, BTN.com

Big Ten Network’s Sean Merriman takes an interesting look at the 10 most highly rated prospects to commit to Big Ten schools in the past decade, how their college careers played (or are playing) out, and what’s next for them in the football season to come.

The list is heavy on Ohio State signees, as one might expect, with Terrelle Pryor ranked No. 1. Somewhat ironically, there isn’t a single current Buckeye on the list — though 2012 recruit Noah Spence is still playing college football. Spence transferred to Eastern Kentucky after his dismissal from Ohio State.

In total, just four schools have representatives on the list. Wisconsin is one, and the other — Maryland — landed its elite prospect, Stefon Diggs, when it was still an ACC member. Diggs played one season in the Big Ten.

Ohio State rival Michigan’s recent failures are really highlighted with this list, but there’s reason for optimism in first-year head coach Jim Harbaugh’s debut campaign.