COACHING CAROUSEL 2010 (NOW USING BIG TEN COUNTING METHODS)
Miles doesn't exactly say 'No'
As Year2 predicted, it didn't take long for the Les Miles-to-Michigan speculation to begin. In fact, given that Miles' Cotton Bowl press conference was taking place as the Michigan news broke, it took literally not time at all. Despite the best efforts of the Cotton Bowl moderator, Miles was forced to give a non-denial denial.
I’m really here to speak about no other school. I’m really here to speak about LSU. Michigan will be fine. They will always be Michigan. Speculation is not factual. The only thing I can say to you is my focus is complete. We’re preparing to play a great A&M team. That’s my want and desire.
Speculation was never going to be factual at today's press conference, given that there is almost no chance that Michigan was going to call Miles right now. That said, the leading candidate still seems to be San Diego State's Brady Hoke, much to the chagrin of some Michigan fans.
And to be completely honest, it's not clear that Miles would be a much better fit culturally at Michigan than Rodriguez was. Sure, he is a "Michigan man," but it would be hard to come up with a Michigan man who is much more different that Lloyd Carr than Miles. Given that Carr reportedly still has some influence on the athletics department in Ann Arbor, that could mean something.
Plus: I'm seeing zero buzz about this on the same blogs that gave it some of its mileage three years ago. That doesn't mean LSU can say definitively that Miles will be back in 2011 -- Michigan's still his alma mater -- but it does seem that this speculation is based more on thin air than it was the last time around.
Manny Diaz headed to Texas
And I'm not really sure how big a deal that is. The Statesman makes much of his improvement in scoring defense, but in what you might call the "sounder" number -- total defense -- Mississippi State went from 10th to 8th. That's an improvement, but not a huge one. That said, it is still an improvement, and the Western Division Bulldogs will have to hope that it doesn't leave with Diaz.
Sunseri in the running again for Pitt job
The charred embers of the Pitt football program have reached out to Sal Sunseri of Alabama as a candidate to take over for the deposed Mike Haywood, who briefly took over for the deposed Dave Wannstedt. Sunseri's son recently committed to Alabama, though the family decision might be unnecessary if Penn State's Tom Bradley gets the job as expected.
Close to what?
There was a missing follow-up at Mark Richt's press conference, and all you need to read to know that is one of his quotes.
"We're not looking to blow anything up," Richt said. "In my opinion, we are very close. We are very close."
Um, close to 7-6? Or 8-5? I'm not trying to run Georgia into the ground, but a team that finished the year with a losing record is not generally one that is close to anything more than average.
But don't worry. Richt now has had some of his administrative chores removed from his docket so that he can focus on -- I'll let him tell you.
"Things are being put in place that are going to help free me up to spend more time doing the things that I love the most, which is study the game of football and be an expert and be on the cutting edge."
Yes, Mark Richt has decided to become an expert on college football. And it only took him 10 years to figure out that expertise in the game might be useful for, you know, a head coach.
"We want to meet Coach Weis before John does anything," John Brantley III said Wednesday. "That may not be for a while."
If arrogant and abrasive aren't their cup of tea, then Brantley is as good as gone.
No chance that the ESPN cameras will be looking for him, I'm sure
Perhaps the most interesting answer to any question Cam Newton got today.
Q. Is your dad coming?
A: Yes, he’s coming.
I'm telling you, Auburn's decision to distance the program from Cecil Newton must really be killing the guy on the inside.