Tuesday, March 24, 2009

A look around

* Charlie Weis announced on Monday that he'll remain on the field rather than coaching from the press box, which he had been considering. This is thoroughly unsurprising -- as I've noted before, I don't think there's ever been a coach who's run the show from upstairs on a regular basis, and with this being an obviously crucial season for Weis and Notre Dame, it doesn't seem like a good time to experiment with any significant changes.

* ESPN's headline, "NCAA rejects FSU's proposal on vacating wins," is a little deceptive. The NCAA has NOT rejected Florida State's appeal of the 14 wins it has been forced to "vacate"; it has only rejected school president T.K. Wetherell's proposal to have a commission set up to review future cases and to have FSU's punishment suspended until the appeal has been decided.

* I don't know what Nate Davis did piss off all the NFL scouts, but I'm stunned that only ONE team (the Colts) showed up to watch his pro day at Ball State. I didn't expect him to be a first-round pick by any means, but I would think that with the numbers Davis put up, he'd at least be worth taking a look at. It's not like every team in the league is loaded with quality options at QB.

* Southern Miss is without all-time leading rusher Damion Fletcher for spring practice after he pleaded guilty to firing a gun into the air at an apartment complex. There hasn't been any in-season suspension announced, but I wouldn't be shocked if he misses the season opener, essentially a warm-up game against Alcorn State, only to conveniently return for the Conference USA opener a week later against Central Florida.

* Vic Hall, a two-year starter at cornerback for Virginia who made a surprise appearance at QB against Virginia Tech, is the starting signal-caller heading into spring practice. This move wasn't completely out of the blue, as Hall apparently was a dominant quarterback in high school before switching to defense in college. Whether he can transition back and be even an acceptable passer remains to be seen -- Virginia's quarterbacks (Jameel Sewell and Marc Verica, mostly) have been somewhere between mediocre and bad during Hall's three seasons, and if he was so far behind those guys that he was immediately moved to defense, that doesn't speak too highly of his passing ability. I'm expecting an offense something along the lines of what Arkansas ran with Darren McFadden and Felix Jones -- a whole lot of read-option plays involving Hall and running back Mikell Simpson.

* Houston quarterback Blake Joseph, who lost out on the starting job last year to Case Keenum after starting five games in 2007, will not return for his final year of eligibility. Joseph put up good numbers when he was on the field, but Keenum distanced himself in '08 by finishing ninth in the country in pass efficiency and throwing 44 touchdown passes.

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