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Sprints Shows Up for the Heisman Trophy Ceremony and Will Muschamp's Hiring // 12.12.10

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We normally don't do Sprints on a Sunday, but yesterday was kind of busy.

2010 HEISMAN TROPHY WINNER: CAM NEWTON

Earlier on Team Speed Kills
Cam Newton Wins 2010 Heisman Trophy

Your context
A few more notes on Cam Newton's win:

  • He becomes the third Auburn player to win the award. Which gives them the edge against Alabama in something. Now if only they could come up with some way to retroactively determine Heisman Trophy winners from years before there was a Heisman.
  • For all the buzz, Newton really didn't come that close to O.J. Simpson. Even when you take into account that there were more points available in the Simpson vote, Newton still had fewer points and a smaller margin of victory than did O.J. Simpson. There were also 105 ballots that didn't include Newton's name and 40 that weren't returned. All of that points to the recruitment story costing Newton some votes. Not that we'll likely ever know that for sure.
  • Three of the last four Heisman winners have been from the SEC. Whether you think things like national championships and individual awards are indicators of conference superiority or not, it's clear that the SEC is the highest-profile conference in the nation right now.

All of this is good at least until the NCAA releases its enforcement measures.

Cammy-Cam Juice does not apparently make your public statements smarter
With all the money he's made about to make, you would think Newton would be able to hire a public relations specialist. Someone who would make sure he didn't say ...

"My parents," Newton said during his acceptance speech, "do a lot of things behind the scenes that go unnoticed."

Sigh. Now we know why Auburn wouldn't let him talk during the season.

Asked if he ever envisions having to return his trophy, Newton told a reporter, "Two letters for you, my friend, 'N-O.'"

It's an interesting question that the trust never had to confront with Reggie Bush. Because Bush "voluntarily" returned his Heisman, we still don't have any precedent for what the trust might do if the Heisman winner is ruled ineligible and doesn't choose to return the award. And the trust could also have to deal with what to do about the award if Newton is only ruled retroactively ineligible for some of the games he played in this season.

Mallett was 7th
The Arkansas quarterback placed behind Justin Blackmon of Oklahoma State and Michigan's Denard Robinson.

Auburn gains semantic edge on Alabama in proving classes matter
Unlike their football-crazed counterparts in Tuscaloosa, Auburn officials are going to hold class on the day of the national championship game. Sort of.

But the university is asking students and profes­sors to be understanding about absences. ... However, since many students and at least some faculty members will be in Arizona, there are no plans to punish scofflaws.

Hooray pointless rules! Especially those that allow you to say you're better than your archrival!

FLORIDA HEAD COACH WILL MUSCHAMP

Earlier on Team Speed Kills
Florida Hires Will Muschamp As Head Coach

Gainesville Sun: Meyer resigned because of health risks
Urban Meyer's decision to resign this year might not have been as inexplicable as we thought, and might not have been a simple wish to spend more time for his family. He might have once again faced a decision where he felt he had no choice.

Meyer was told by doctors last week that the symptoms he continues to experience -- including burning sensations in his chest -- would raise his cardiovascular risk factors, so he decided it necessitated his resignation, according to the source.

Dooley has great sources in the Florida athletics department, so his source here is probably pretty solid. In any case, it would seem to put the kibosh on the talk of Meyer coaching in the future, if it would be a risk to his health to do so.

This would be quite rude
Not that it would have an practical effect, though it could make things interesting if Florida and Texas were to meet in a bowl.

It was unclear late Saturday whether Florida contacted Texas men's Athletic Director DeLoss Dodds for permission to talk to Muschamp, or when and where Muschamp met with Florida Athletic Director Jeremy Foley. ...

Brown said the Longhorns respect Muschamp's decision.

"We were planning and hoping Will was going to be the next head coach at Texas, but obviously things didn't work out that way," Brown said in a statement. "He is a great coach and will be a good fit for Florida."

And Mack Brown's seat, which was only slightly warm after a 5-7 season, now has to be on fire. He's lost the head-coach-in-waiting and (as we will soon see) the in-house candidate for offensive coordinator, all while presiding over the worst season in quite some time. Brown's not going to be fired right now, but his margin for error seems to get smaller by the minute.

Major Applewhite will be the offensive coordinator
The Gainesville Sun is pegging Applewhite to take over on the offensive side of the ball. We'll see what approach he'll take to the beleaguered offense; he ran a spread at Rice in his one year there, didn't get much control of the offense under Saban in 2007 and has been running backs coach at Texas -- when Texas didn't have much in the running backs department to brag about.

Next on the target list: Kirby Smart
Apparently, it's going to be 2007 Alabama all over again in Gainesville. (2007 Alabama lost to Louisiana-Monroe.) Kirby Smart, who at least wasn't promoted to defensive coordinator until after that season, is next on the target list for Will Muschamp. We should note here that Smart makes $750,000 and has turned down offers elsewhere before. But Florida's defensive coordinator post has proven to be a valuable stop on the road to being a head coach.

That could lead to some awkward conversations
The person who wins the annual rivalry game gets to choose their favorite weekends, maybe?

"We'll get after each other. He'll do a great job," said Florida State HC Jimbo Fisher. Fisher and Muschamp own a beach house together in Florida.

Just remember to take your playbook whenever you leave.

OTHER COACHING CAROUSEL 2010 MOVES

No, it's just boilerplate. Why do you ask?
Bobby Petrino has a seven-year contract worth $3.56 million now. What does Arkansas get out of the deal?

The new agreement will also expand the non-compete clause in Coach Petrino's current agreement to include all Southeastern Conference institutions, rather than being limited to western division institutions only.

Not that there was anything driving that change. Nope, they have complete confidence that Coach Petrino wants to stay there forever. It's just one of those changes they thought needed to be made, you see.

Mississippi State loses a coach
But it's receivers coach Mark Hudspeth, who is now heading to Lousiana-Lafayette. Mississippi State fans were stunned by the news that someone actually coaches the wide receivers.

Joker Phillips being creative with the law
Who could possibly be in line to be hired by Kentucky for some of its coaching vacancies?

Rick Minter and Steve Pardue were both present at UK's practice on Saturday, standing on the field observing drills. ...

Phillips said the school can't announce a hiring until a vacant job is posted for seven days. Two assistant coaching positions were posted on UK's Web site on Tuesday. For now, Phillips refers to Minter and Pardue as "temporary" employees.

How quaint.

OTHER NEWS

It's probably the right call, but it's disappointing
Joker Phillips has suspended Mike Hartline for the bowl game after his arrest. That ends Hartline's career at Kentucky during his best season. In other news, the Lexington Police Department is apparently being mentored by the Athens Police Department.

Hartline was arrested early Friday morning and charged with second-degree disorderly conduct, alcohol intoxication in a public place and failure to notify the department of transportation of an address change, according to police reports. [Emphasis added.]

That's a crime?

Steve Spurrier has a secret plan for the bowl game
He won't say what he's going to do differently, but you almost have to tweak something after the last two postseason games.

"Obviously, whatever the heck we've done hasn't worked well the last two years. I don't know why. We'll do some things different."

Spurrier also uses an interesting phrase on how long he thinks he'll stay at South Carolina -- "three to five years." That's the first time I remember him using three. Could be reading too much into that, but Spurrier might be laying the groundwork for an exit after the 2013 season.