Florida State head coach Jimbo Fisher made what seemed like the only logical choice Monday, dismissing quarterback De’Andre Johnson after video of the talented freshman punching a woman surfaced. But given Oklahoma’s reinstatement of Joe Mixon, Johnson’s dismissal wasn’t necessarily a slam-dunk decision.
Johnson’s attorney issued a non-apology apology Monday shortly after media outlets picked up the surveillance video, initially published at the Tallahassee Democrat.
It’s not fair to expect Johnson to self-incriminate in a public statement. Still, passing off blame in the opening sentence and extending apologies to those “directly affected,” including Jimbo Fisher, but not the victim, is a bad look.
“While it is clear from the video that De’Andre Johnson was not the initial aggressor, his family wants to take the lead in helping him learn and grow from this experience. He is currently participating in community service, and faith-based programs focused on battered women, substance abuse, and the empowerment of children. De’Andre is extremely embarrassed by this situation and would like to express his heartfelt apologies to everyone, including those who were directly affected, Coach Fisher and his team mates, the entire Florida State University community, as well as his family and friends.”
Hopefully the “programs focused on battered women” have an impact on Johnson and he matures in the wake of this awful incident. As for Jimbo Fisher, the Florida State coach made the only move he could.
Terry P. Johnson, The Student Section
Onto much lighter news: With Independence Day, we’re barreling toward the start of the 2015 college football season with all the momentum of a #FatGuyTouchdown. CFBHuddle.com’s friends at The Student Section help get the party started with a countdown of seven terrific plays sure to whet your appetite for the game’s return.
Here’s a sample of what you can expect to find there:
Colorado head coach Mike MacIntyre called his 2015 team a varsity, after operating with the youth of a J.V. his first two seasons in Boulder. The Buffs are indeed heading into the new year with the best lineup Colorado football’s had since at least 2007 — the last year the Buffaloes bowled — but it’s going to be an uphill battle to get on the right side of .500.
I preview Colorado’s 2015 season for Today’s U., which offers the most hope the program’s had in a long time. The Buffs may not reach a bowl game in the coming season, but they’ll spoil someone’s season in the Pac-12.
The University of South Alabama finished a landmark season, reaching the Camellia Bowl for the first postseason in program history. The Jaguars’ success attracted 17,445 fans to Leeds-Peebles Stadium in Mobile, on average, a jump of 1,519 over the previous campaign.
With progress for the young program and growing interest in the region, South Alabama’s interest in an on-campus venue makes sense. From the university’s release:
“The University of South Alabama football program has generated significant support and excitement among our students, our alumni, our faculty and staff, and our many supporters in the community,” said Athletics Director Joel Erdmann. “We want to carefully examine the many questions that have to be answered before we can make a decision on whether to move forward with an on-campus stadium.”
I interviewed Erdmann for an NCAA.com feature on South Alabama in 2010, when the Jaguars were playing a schedule that featured prep schools and Div. II opponents. FBS membership and bowl games was a far-off vision, but Erdmann said then that launching football sparked interest from prospective students and donors alike.