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Tag:Tom Fornelli
Posted on: February 2, 2012 12:40 pm
 

Oliver Luck not looking to be Big 12 commissioner

Posted by Tom Fornelli

There are a lot of questions surrounding the Big 12 right now, not the least of which is who will be the conference's next commissioner. Chuck Neinas, who was brought on to replace Dan Beebe, has no interest in removing the word "acting" from his title, and the conference has put a search committee together to find a replacement.

Although his school isn't even an official member of the conference yet, West Virginia athletic director Oliver Luck's name has been brought up as a potential candidate for the job, though it doesn't sound like he's all that interested in taking it. Luck told the Charleston Gazette that it's not really in his plans.

"I'd rather be on the search committee," Luck told the paper.

"No, I'm very happy with what I'm doing. We have lots to do here yet. I'm happy being on [school president] Jim Clements' team."

Others brought up as potential candidates include Conference USA commissioner Britton Banowsky, Notre Dame athletic director Jack Swarbrick, and NCAA interim vice president of championships and alliances Greg Shaheen.

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Posted on: February 2, 2012 11:37 am
Edited on: February 2, 2012 12:20 pm
 

Minnesota AD Joel Maturi retiring

Posted by Tom Fornelli

Minnesota athletic director Joel Maturi will retire on Thursday, the school announced. The school has a press conference scheduled for 11am to make the announcement. 

Maturi's contract was expiring and the school did not want to renew it.

Maturi sent an email to Minnesota's student-athletes, coaches and staff on Thursday morning to inform them of his retirement.

“It is with mixed emotions that I share with you that ... I will announce my retirement as the director of athletics at the University of Minnesota effective June 30th,” Maturi said in the email. “There is sadness because I have enjoyed every day of this 10-year journey. There is excitement because President [Eric] Kaler has asked me to remain next year as a special assistant to the president.” 

Maturi became Minnesota's athletic director in 2002, and was the first athletic director in school history to run an athletic department that had united both men's and women's programs. He also oversaw the fundraising and construction of the football team's TCF Bank Stadium. Still, in spite of his accomplishments at the school, it was the school's lack of success on the football field that may have ultimately led to his retirement.

Maturi hired Tim Brewster in 2007 after firing Glen Mason even though Brewster had never been a head coach or even a coordinator above the high school level. Minnesota went 15-30 under Brewster, who was fired after a 1-6 start in 2010 and received a buyout from the school. After Brewster's firing, a group of former Minnesota football players rallied against allowing Maturi to lead the next coaching search.

Minnesota then hired Jerry Kill from Northern Illinois with the help of former president of the alumni association, Dave Mona.

Maturi's contract runs through June 30th, and a search for his replacement will begin soon, as president Eric Kaler plans to have a replacement in place for July 1st.

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Posted on: February 2, 2012 10:53 am
 

Ohio State doesn't list Michigan on its schedule

Posted by Tom Fornelli

Were you aware that Ohio State and Michigan had a rivalry? It's true, they do.

The two schools actually aren't very big fans of each other, even though they play in the same conference and are practically neighbors. They've both tried to fix things, even resorting to neighbor's counseling at times, but it seems that no matter what the two schools try, just nothing works.

The relationship has gotten so bad as of late that the two schools won't even refer to the other by name. Heck, Ohio State won't even list Michigan on its schedule anymore.



What a shame. I thought those two kids were going to make it.

Photo via MGoBlog

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Posted on: February 2, 2012 10:26 am
Edited on: February 2, 2012 3:40 pm
 

Louisiana Tech's Duplessis dies at 21

Posted by Tom Fornelli

Sad news from Louisiana Tech on Thursday morning, as the school sent out a release confirming that running back Tyrone Duplessis passed away early Thursday morning at his off-campus apartment.

Duplessis was only 21 years old.

“Tyrone was a valuable part of this football family,” said head coach Sonny Dykes in a statement. “This is a tragic, senseless loss, but he made a lasting impact on this team, University and everyone that knew him.”

“Our thoughts and prayers go out to Tyrone and his family,” said Athletics Director Bruce Van De Velde. “Tyrone was a special young man who was loved and respected by the Tech Family. He will be dearly missed, but I am sure his teammates and friends will honor and remember him through their commitment to fulfilling their potential.”

The cause of death has not yet been determined.

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Posted on: February 2, 2012 10:06 am
Edited on: February 2, 2012 10:07 am
 

Bo Pelini was in a car accident

Posted by Tom Fornelli

Nobody was hurt, but it sounds like Bo Pelini might be in the market for a new car after getting into an accident on Wednesday night.

The Nebraska head coach was on his way to the Cornhuskers recruiting dinner in Omaha, but he couldn't get out of Lincoln before his car was hit on the driver's side. According to the report in the Lincoln Journal Star, Pelini was heading eastbound on Old Cheney when he came to the intersection at south 34th street.

It was there that a car heading in the opposite direction suddenly turned left into his car.

"It was kind of nasty, but everybody's okay," Pelini told the Journal Star on Wednesday night.

Not to be deterred from the dinner, Pelini found another car to finish the drive to Omaha, as his car was too damaged to drive.

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Posted on: February 1, 2012 9:53 pm
Edited on: February 1, 2012 10:00 pm
 

Report: Tressel could take a job at Akron

Posted by Tom Fornelli

Just when the day seemed to belong to Urban Meyer and Ohio State's newest recruiting class, former Ohio State head coach Jim Tressel's name popped up in the news.

According to a report in the Cleveland Plain-Dealer, Tressel may be close to accepting a job at Akron. Tressel will not be joining the school as a coach, however, instead he'll be filling an administrative role within the school's athletic department.

"When Jim Tressel and other alumni assisted us in our search for a football coach last December, we began to engage in dynamic conversations about Jim's professional goals outside of athletics," the school told the Plain-Dealer. "We share a common interest in innovative programs for student success. Our discussions continue." 

Akron has an announcement scheduled for Thursday at 10am.

It wouldn't be the first job Tressel has taken since leaving Ohio State. He spent the 2011 season as an advisor with the Indianapolis Colts, and even interviewed to be their next head coach before the Colts hired Chuck Pagano to fill the role.

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Posted on: February 1, 2012 9:34 pm
 

Signing Day is bittersweet in South Bend

Posted by Tom Fornelli

If you look at the players Notre Dame has in its latest recruiting class, you can see why the Irish are ranked at #17 in CBS Sports National Signing Day Top 25 this year. After all, Brian Kelly and his staff managed to sign one of the top quarterbacks in the country with Gunner Kiel, got a perfectly named William Mahone -- if Irish fans aren't calling him "Pogue" before he even sets foot on the field, they're doing it wrong -- at running back, and continued to build on defense with players like Tee Shepard, Sheldon Day and Jarron Jones.

The problem is when you look at Notre Dame's list of commitments and realize who isn't there. That's when you notice wide receiver Deontay Greenberry is suddenly missing.

His name was supposed to be on that list, and his signature was supposed to be on a letter of intent coming across a fax machine, only it wasn't. Instead Brian Kelly was caught off-guard on Wednesday morning when he found out that Greenberry had given his letter of intent to Houston. Understandably, Kelly was a bit perturbed at the development.

"I used to have a saying about players like that and that was I'd rather play against him for four games than with him for four years," Kelly said shortly after hearing the news.

Kelly would later change his tune on Greenberry, saying it's hard "to feel disappointed about something I never had," but his original feelings reflected that of a fan base in shock. Five-star wide receivers just aren't supposed to turn down a chance to play at Notre Dame for a school like Houston. A school like Houston that just lost its head coach at that.

Times, however, they are a changing, both in South Bend where the Irish just aren't the powerhouse they want to be, and in the recruiting game, which is more national than ever before. 

The real reason Greenberry's switch hurts is because Notre Dame has a big playmaker to replace on offense next season in Michael Floyd. Nobody knows who is going to be lining up under center for the Irish next season. It could be Tommy Rees, Andrew Hendrix, Everett Golson or the newcomer, Kiel.

Whoever it ends up being, having a target like Greenberry available would have made things a lot easier.

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Posted on: February 1, 2012 8:31 pm
Edited on: February 1, 2012 9:58 pm
 

National Signing Day Winners and Losers: Big Ten



Posted by Tom Fornelli


Breaking down who won and who lost in the Big Ten on National Signing Day

WINNER: The Recruiting Machine Known To Mankind As Urban Meyer

Scholarship limits, postseason bans, these things matter not to the one known as Urban Meyer. They will not keep him out of your high school classrooms where he's stealing your recruits. Since the day Meyer first set foot in Columbus as its new Caesar, high schoolers have flocked to the Buckeyes, previous commitments be damned. What was already a solid class was boosted on Wednesday by the addition of offensive lineman Kyle Dodson, who had previously committed to Wisconsin. Then there's the work Meyer did on the defensive line, closing on players like Noah Spence, Tommy Schutt, Se'von Pittman and Adolphus Washington, and it's no wonder this class is ranked third in the CBS Sports National Signing Day Top 25. Making matters even scarier for the rest of the Big Ten, Meyer's already locked up two top recruits in the 2013 class. The man -- machine? -- just cannot be stopped. 

LOSER: The Bottom Of The Legends And Leaders

Minnesota, Northwestern, Illinois and Indiana all managed to finish at the bottom of their respective divisions in 2011, and nothing in their 2012 recruiting classes makes you think any of the four will be climbing the standings anytime soon. Particularly when you compare their classes to the teams above them. Only two 4-star recruits signed with any of them, and both of those players are on their way to Northwestern: defensive end Ifeadi Odenigbo and defensive tackle Greg Kuhar.

WINNER: Fans Of The Old Big Ten

Remember the long, long ago of the late 20th and early 21st centuries when the Big Ten was dominated by Ohio State and Michigan? Yes, well, it appears those days may be upon us again. While we already went over Ohio State's impressive haul, the work put in at Michigan by Brady Hoke and his staff shouldn't be ignored. The Wolverines put together the fourth ranked class in the CBS Sports National Signing Day Top 25 thanks to signings like offensive lineman Kyle Kalis and defensive tackle Ondre Pipkins. Brady Hoke put a lot of emphasis on the offensive line and the defense in this class, and it could go a long way to ensuring that "Ohio" and "That School Up North" play twice a season for the next few years. For more on Michigan's 2012 class, you can watch Brady Hoke talk about his newest players here.

LOSER: Wisconsin

This isn't a knock on Wisconsin's class, though it is the smallest of any class in the Big Ten with only 12 commits. No, it's more a representation of the fact that Ohio State and Michigan seem to be back on their way to national prominence. The Badgers enjoyed the last few years and the struggles of the Wolverines and Buckeyes, taking advantage of their problems with two straight conference titles and Rose Bowl trips. This isn't to say that the Badgers won't win the Big Ten again anytime soon, but it just got a lot harder to do so.

WINNER: Penn State

You're not used to seeing the term "winner" in relation to Penn State's football program lately, are you? Well, when you consider all that has gone on in Happy Valley over the last six months, combined with the fact the team's new head coach is still busy trying to win a Super Bowl, you have to be impressed with what the Nittany Lions did on Wednesday. No, the 19 players that committed to Penn State won't blow you away as a whole, but it's a class that will ensure there's still talent at Penn State as the program tries to transition to a new era of Nittany Lions football.

LOSER: The Lack Of Attention Paid To Purdue's Class

You're probably confused right now, and I apologize for that. What I'm trying to say here is that while you weren't paying any attention, Purdue and Danny Hope went out and put together a pretty nice class in West Lafayette. Athlete Carlos Carvajal -- all 6 feet and 7 inches of him -- and defensive end Ryan Watson are probably the most intriguing prospects, but from top to bottom, this whole class is pretty solid. Especially considering Purdue's recent troubles on the gridiron. What's more surprising is how this class is spread across the country. While 4 of the 25 signees are from Indiana, the rest come from all four corners of the country, including New York, Florida, Alabama, Texas, Ohio and California. Depending on how quickly these players can contribute, the Boilermakers may catch some people by surprise in the next couple of years.

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com