NCAA Football Review: Ohio State, LSU, Longhorn Network and More

| by

Each week during the off-season we will be doing this feature that is simply called "This Week In College Football". We will cover the biggest news and stories of the past week and give some opinions and analysis.

In addition to covering the weekly happenings we are more than mid-way through our Pre-Season Previews and we currently have 75 FBS previews up on the site. This week we previewed Arizona St, California, Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico St, and UNC. Next week we will have Auburn, Georgia Tech, Tulsa and Utah among the teams that we will preview. Last week in this column week talked about Jeff Demps, Georgia Tech getting hit with probation, Georgia losing a RB and moving a LB over to fill his spot and Bobby Petrino booting Greg Oden's brother from the team.

This week was SEC Media Days so that feel of college football is really starting to get in the air. Let's talk about the biggest stories this week in college football:


Earlier this week, the NCAA shocked everybody who is not an Ohio State grad or fan when they said they didn't find any evidence tOSU failed to properly monitor it's football program and said they did not find any new violations. All of the really good NCAA investigators must have been busy down south and not on this case! On a serious note though, this is pretty shocking and while it looks like this is over for now I would not be surprised at all if more were to come out at a later date. For now it's Jim Tressel that tOSU has labeled as the lone gunman and that defense seems to have worked for them. Ohio State didn't get off scot free but they came out of it as good as they could in my opinion.

Ohio State will overhaul it's compliance office, which I'm not sure why they would be doing if they didn't feel they "failed to properly monitor" it's programs. They also vacate the 2010 season victories, which means nothing except to SEC fans who can still brag that tOSU cannot beat them (tOSU still gets to keep the money paid out from the bowl game). Looks like tOSU comes out of this a lot better than most expected as a program but they will still be hurt on the field by the loss of their coach and several key players.


Some information popped up this week that LSU WR Russell Shepard (who along with Rueben Randle has the most receptions of any returnee for the Tigers) could possibly miss some time this year due to a housing issue. According to Tiger Sports Digest Shepard moved in with a member of the athletic department (who is also his girlfriend). It is believed that the payment for said housing might not be in compliance with NCAA rules.

Last year something like this happened over at South Carolina where players were getting discounted rent at the Whitney Hotel. There were about 10 players involved with this but only three were held out of the first game (Jariel King, Chris Culliver and Weslye Saunders- and Saunders had a lot of other issues with Spurrier). This will be an interesting story to watch as the Tigers open up against Oregon as they cannot afford to lose anybody for that big game.

In other LSU news, the NCAA accepted their proposed penalties for major violations. LSU will serve a one year probation, will limit their recruiting visits by 10% and they had already imposed a two scholarship reduction last season (although has them signing 29 players last year and 24 in 2009). But there is good reason to be happy if you are an LSU fan. LSU branded beer is coming your way and it will be sold during football games this year. Geaux Tigers!


There was a lot of concern coming out of the Big 12 this week in terms of what games would be shown on the Longhorn Network and if High School games would be shown (which would be a huge recruiting advantage for Texas). Right now, the Longhorn Network's plan to televise High School games is on hold waiting for the NCAA to make a call. One reason Big 12 schools are concerned is because the VP of the Longhorn Network is already calling out recruits by name and actively using his position to help Texas recruit them. Maybe it was an innocent name dropping or miscue but guys in this position don't make these kinds of mistakes on the radio. This was either a calculated move or the guy is an idiot. You make your choice. Because of all the hub-bub around this situation the rumors of Texas A&M to the SEC have once again opened up. SEC czar Mike Slive even made the statement that he could get to 16 teams in 15 minutes. The plot thickens.


The headline sounds worse than it is. On Monday, about 30 minutes before I went on with Michael Felder to record a podcast about Georgia football, the news came down that Carlton Thomas would be suspended for at least the first game of the season (which also happens to be against Boise St). Yes, Thomas is the leading returning rusher for Georgia but he still figured to around third on the depth chart for the game once all was said and done and he is a situational back. Georgia will depend more heavily this year on incoming freshman Isaiah Crowell and RB turned LB turned RB again Richard Samuel to tote the majority of the load this year. Stay tuned to this one folks cause it's going to be a very interesting and fluid situation at RB for Georgia leading up to their Georgia Dome opener with the Broncos of Boise State.


USC RB Marc Tyler was suspended for the season opener after being filmed by TMZ and making some very interesting comments. We will let you watch the clip for yourself and make your own opinions but I think we all agree in that this age of media (where everybody has a cell phone that takes pictures and video and can immediately put them on the internet via facebook, youtube and twitter), college athletes have to be smarter about what they do, when they do it and who is watching then they ever have been in the past.


- Trent Richardson showed up on the internet this week posing for some pictures in a clothing store and signing a helmet. Word is that Bama already looked into this last year and their compliance department said Richardson did not receive discounts or additional benefits. The Alabama fanbase can commence breathing.

- Tennessee self-imposed two years of probation based on the rouge natures of Lane Kiffin and Bruce Pearl. And to think, they almost named Dan Radakovich as their AD (yep the guy who got Georgia Tech put on probation last week).

- Former Florida RB Mike Blakely had his appeal to allow him to play immediately for Auburn denied this week. That's actually one position that Auburn seems like they have a handle on this year with all of the departures from last season.

- We will leave you with the media picks for the SEC. Agree, disagree? Chime in to the discussion.



First-Team Offense
Position Name, Team Ht. Wt. Class Hometown
TE Orson Charles, Georgia (71) 6-3 241 Jr. Tampa, Fla.
OL Barrett Jones, Alabama (148) 6-5 311 Jr. Memphis, Tenn.
OL Bradley Sowell, Ole Miss (72) 6-7 315 Sr. Hernando, Miss.
OL Cordy Glenn, Georgia (71) 6-5 348 Sr. Riverdale, Ga.
*OL Larry Warford, Kentucky (55) 6-3 340 Jr. Richmond, Ky.
*OL Brandon Mosley, Auburn (55) 6-6 306 Sr. Jefferson, Ga.
C William Vlachos, Alabama (97) 6-1 294 Sr. Mountain Brook, Ala.
WR Greg Childs, Arkansas (103) 6-3 217 Sr. Warren, Ark.
WR Alshon Jeffery, South Carolina (152) 6-4 233 Jr. St. Matthews, S.C.
QB Aaron Murray, Georgia (117) 6-1 211 So. Tampa, Fla.
RB Marcus Lattimore, South Carolina (130) 6-0 231 So. Duncan, S.C.
RB Trent Richardson, Alabama (119) 5-11 224 Jr. Pensacola, Fla.
Second-Team Offense
Position Name, Team Ht. Wt. Class Hometown
TE Phillip Lutzenkirchen, Auburn (57) 6-4 253 Jr. Marietta, Ga.
OL D.J. Fluker, Alabama (52) 6-6 335 So. Foley, Ala.
OL Alex Hurst, LSU (33) 6-6 329 Jr. Bartlett, Tenn.
OL Bobby Massie, Ole Miss (30) 6-6 325 Jr. Lynchburg, Va.
OL Chance Warmack, Alabama (24) 6-3 320 Jr. Atlanta, Ga.
C Ben Jones, Georgia (45) 6-3 316 Sr. Centreville, Ala.
WR Marquis Maze, Alabama (22) 5-10 180 Sr. Birmingham, Ala.
WR Joe Adams, Arkansas (17) 5-11 190 Sr. Little Rock, Ark.
QB Stephen Garcia, South Carolina (23) 6-2 230 Sr. Lutz, Fla.
RB Knile Davis, Arkansas (50) 6-0 230 Jr. Missouri City, Texas
RB Michael Dyer, Auburn (23) 5-9 206 So. Little Rock, Ark.
Third-Team Offense
Position Name, Team Ht. Wt. Class Hometown
*TE Michael Williams, Alabama (12) 6-6 269 Jr. Reform, Ala.
*TE Brandon Barden, Vanderbilt (12) 6-5 245 Sr. Lincolnton, Ga.
OL Grant Cook, Arkansas (21) 6-4 318 Sr. Jonesboro, Ark.
OL Kyle Nunn, South Carolina (21) 6-5 296 Sr. Sumter, S.C.
OL Rokevious Watkins, South Carolina (18) 6-4 334 Sr. Fairburn, Ga.
*OL Alvin Bailey, Arkansas (14) 6-5 319 So. Broken Arrow, Okla.
*OL Addison Lawrence, Mississippi State (14) 6-4 300 Sr. Coldwater, Miss.
*OL Gabe Jackson, Mississippi State (14) 6-4 320 So. Liberty, Miss.
C Travis Swanson, Arkansas (9) 6-5 305 So. Kingwood, Texas
WR Jarious Wright, Arkansas (8) 5-10 180 Sr. Warren, Ark.
WR Emory Blake, Auburn (7) 6-1 197 Jr. Austin, Texas
QB Jordan Jefferson, LSU (12) 6-5 224 Sr. St. Rose, La.
RB Brandon Bolden, Ole Miss (5) 5-11 221 Sr. Baton Rouge, La.
RB Tauren Poole, Tennessee (3) 5-10 215 Sr. Toccoa, Ga.
First-Team Defense
Position Name, Team Ht. Wt. Class Hometown
DL Jake Bequette, Arkansas (100) 6-5 271 Sr. Little Rock, Ark.
DL Josh Chapman, Alabama (85) 6-1 310 Sr. Hoover, Ala.
DL Kentrell Lockett, Ole Miss (69) 6-5 248 Sr. Hahnville, La.
DL Malik Jackson, Tennessee (63) 6-5 270 Sr. Northridge, Calif.
LB Dont'a Hightower, Alabama (144) 6-4 260 Jr. Lewisburg, Tenn.
LB Courtney Upshaw, Alabama (82) 6-2 265 Sr. Eufala, Ala.
LB Danny Trevathan, Kentucky (69) 6-1 230 Sr. Leesburg, Fla.
DB Mark Barron, Alabama (140) 6-2 218 Sr. Mobile, Ala.
DB Robert Lester, Alabama (79) 6-2 210 Jr. Foley, Ala.
DB Stephon Gilmore, South Carolina (64) 6-1 194 Jr. Rock Hill, S.C.
DB Morris Claiborne, LSU (163) 6-0 177 Jr. Shreveport, La.
Second-Team Defense
Position Name, Team Ht. Wt. Class Hometown
DL Devin Taylor, South Carolina (56) 6-7 248 Jr. Beaufort, S.C.
DL Nosa Eguae, Auburn (37) 6-2 261 So. Mansfield, Texas
DL DeAngelo Tyson, Georgia (30) 6-2 306 Sr. Statesboro, Ga.
*DL Fletcher Cox, Mississippi State (26) 6-4 295 Jr. Yazoo City, Miss.
*DL Travian Robertson, South Carolina (26) 6-4 298 Sr. Laurinburg, N.C.
LB Chris Marve, Vanderbilt (61) 6-0 235 Sr. Memphis, Tenn.
LB Jerry Franklin, Arkansas (35) 6-1 245 Sr. Marion, Ark.
LB Ryan Baker, LSU (22) 6-0 227 Sr. Grand Ridge, Fla.
DB Dre' Kirkpatrick, Alabama (50) 6-3 192 Jr. Gadsden, Ala.
DB Brandon Boykin, Georgia (43) 5-10 183 Sr. Fayetteville, Ga.
DB Janzen Jackson, Tennessee (34) 6-0 187 Jr. Lake Charles, La.
DB Neiko Thorpe, Auburn (31) 6-2 185 Sr. Tucker, Ga.
Third-Team Defense
Position Name, Team Ht. Wt. Class Hometown
DL Melvin Ingram, South Carolina (21) 6-2 271 Sr. Hamlet, N.C.
DL Barkevious Mingo, LSU (21) 6-5 240 So. West Monroe, La.
DL Sam Montgomery, LSU (20) 6-4 250 So. Greenwood, S.C.
*DL Tenarius Wright, Arkansas (15) 6-2 252 Jr. Memphis, Tenn.
*DL Dominique Easley, Florida (15) 6-1 285 So. Staten Island, N.Y.
LB Shaq Wilson, South Carolina (18) 5-11 233 Jr. Jacksonville, Fla.
LB C.J. Mosley, Alabama (17) 6-2 234 So. Theodore, Ala.
*LB Jon Bostic (12) 6-1 238 Jr. Wellington, Fla.
*LB Jerico Nelson, Arkansas (12) 5-10 216 Sr. Destrehan, La.
DB Casey Hayward, Vanderbilt (18) 5-11 188 Sr. Perry, Ga.
DB T'Sharvan Bell, Auburn (18) 6-0 180 Jr. Kissimmee, Fla.
DB Tyrann Mathieu, LSU (17) 5-9 180 Sr. New Orleans, La.
DB Tramain Thomas, Arkansas (16) 6-0 198 Sr. Winnie, Texas
First-Team Specialists
Position Name, Team Ht. Wt. Class Hometown
PK Blair Walsh, Georgia (110) 5-10 192 Sr. Boca Raton, Fla.
P Drew Butler, Georgia (118) 6-2 214 Sr. Duluth, Ga.
RS Brandon Boykin, Georgia (53) 5-10 183 Sr. Fayetteville, Ga.
AP Trent Richardson, Alabama (71) 5-11 224 Jr. Pensacola, Fla.
Second-Team Specialists
Position Name, Team Ht. Wt. Class Hometown
PK Caleb Stugis, Floirda (24) 5-10 192 Jr. St. Augustine, Fla.
P Tyler Campbell, Ole Miss (21) 6-2 227 Jr. Little Rock, Ark.
RS Onterrio McCalebb, Auburn (29) 5-10 170 Jr. Fort Meade, Fla.
AP Joe Adams, Arkansas (42) 5-11 190 Sr. Little Rock, Ark.
Third-Team Specialists
Position Name, Team Ht. Wt. Class Hometown
*PK Zach Hocker, Arkansas (10) 6-0 180 So. Russellville, Ark.
*PK Bryon Rose, Ole Miss (10) 5-11 197 Jr. Raleigh, N.C.
P Ryan Tydlacka, Kentucky (13) 6-1 185 Sr. Louisville, Ky.
RS Marquis Maze, Alabama (28) 5-10 180 Sr. Birmingham, Ala.
AP Trey Burton, Florida (22) 6-2 222 So. Venice, Fla.
SEC Predicted Order of Finish
SEC CHAMPION - Alabama (98), LSU (29), Arkansas (18), South Carolina (14), Georgia (4), Florida (2), Ole Miss (2)
Eastern Division (First Place Votes) Team Points
1. South Carolina (114) 931
2. Georgia (38) 794
3. Florida (12) 731
4. Tennessee (2) 496
5. Kentucky (1) 340
6. Vanderbilt 215
Western Division (First Place Votes) Team Points
1. Alabama (111) 925
2. LSU (30) 790
3. Arkansas (23) 717
4. Mississippi State (1) 455
5. Auburn 406
6. Ole Miss (2) 214