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SEC Headlines 1/15/2014

headlines-wedSEC Coaching News

1. One prediction on the impact of Georgia hiring defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt: ”Might as well go ahead, beat the rush and make Georgia your favorite to win the SEC East in 2014.”

2. Pruitt replaces Todd Grantham who left for Louisville.  ”As a straight trade, it’s roughly comparable to swapping George McClellan for Ulysses S. Grant.” Pruitt was Georgia’s first and only choice.

3. Mississippi State offensive coordinator Les Koenning reportedly headed to Texas to join Charlie Strong’s staff.

4. How does Strong’s contract compare to the one at Texas A&M for Kevin Sumlin?

5. Mike Bianchi on why Strong didn’t get  a particular SEC job: “He was told that he didn’t get the job because he was a black man who had a white wife…”

6. Stewart Mandel on Lane Kiffin to Alabama: “The massive disconnect between the public perception of Kiffin and the opinions of those that know him have long fascinated me.”

7. LSU reportedly offers its offensive line coach position to Virginia Tech offensive line coach Jeff Grimes. 

8. Aggies make it official – announce the hiring of Terry Joseph as defensive backs coach.

SEC Football

9. Don’t expect the drug felony investigation involving Missouri receiver Dorial Green-Beckham to be resolved anytime soon.

10. Expect South Carolina’s linebackers to lead the defense in 2014.

11. Alabama freshman quarterback Luke Del Rio is leaving the Crimson Tide program. Son of Denver Broncos defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio.

12. Former Florida quarterback Tyler Murphy headed to Boston College.

13. Here are the nine early enrollees already on campus at Florida.

SEC/NFL Draft

14. Jadeveon Clowney to the Texans?  Houston owner is a South Carolina grad.

15. Early defections at LSU are up to six players - includes wide receiver Odell Beckham – but offensive tackle La’El Collins is staying for his senior season.

16. Total SEC underclassmen departing approaching 30 – deadline to declare is today.

17. Alabama receiver DeAndrew White says he’ll return for his senior season.

18. Alabama quarterback AJ McCarron won’t play in the Senior Bowl – wants to focus on NFL draft.

Media

19. Are college sports telecasts essentially” informercials under the guise of entertainment”?

20. The Sports Illustrated series detailing allegations at Oklahoma State has cost the school more than $100,000.

SEC Basketball

21. Auburn walk-on forward Alex Thompson is getting a scholarship.

Tonight’s schedule:

22. Auburn at Tennessee.  Can the Tigers get over the hump and break their 12-game SEC losing streak?

23. Mississippi State at Alabama.  Bulldogs haven’t won a conference road game in over a year.

24. South Carolina at Texas A&M. Two teams going in different directions;  South Carolina 0-2 to start SEC play – Texas A&M 2-0.

25. LSU at Ole Miss.  Rebels regret missing out on Johnny O’Bryant.  Ole Miss coach Andy Kennedy: “We spent a lot of time and energy recruiting Johnny.”

26. Our earlier roundup of Tuesday night SEC hoops.

Extra

27.  USA Today: The financial divide between the top five leagues in FBS and the other five leagues…is expected to grow dramatically with the SEC’s new TV money and the advent of the College Football Playoff, which begins next season.”

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Report: UT Loses Another Assistant

Tennessee football coach Derek Dooley has now lost seven of nine.  That’s assistant coaches this offseason, not the “Star Trek: Voyager” character named Seven of Nine (which gives us an excuse to drive up pageviews with a shot of Jeri Ryan).

According to VolQuest.com — the Rivals site covering Tennessee — safeties coach and recruiting coordinator Terry Joseph has confirmed to that site that he has accepted the position of secondary coach with Nebraska.  (Sorry, but that story is behind a paywall.)  That means Dooley will soon have to find his seventh new assistant since the end of last season.

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UT’s Dooley May Lose 7th Assistant This Offseason

There’s a scene in the movie “Titanic” — which has been running about 10 times a day on HBO recently — where rats are running down a hallway in hopes of finding an exit from the sinking ship.

On a completely unrelated note — yes, that’s sarcasm — Tennessee coach Derek Dooley might be on the verge of losing his seventh assistant coach of the offseason.  If safeties coach and recruiting coordinator Terry Joseph accepts an offer to become Nebraska’s new secondary coach, only Jim Chaney and Darin Hinshaw will remain as holdovers from last year’s Vol staff… and they will both have some new duties as well.

Joseph served as UT’s full secondary coach last year.  Entering the season, the Vols’ DBs were expected to be a strength of the team.  They weren’t.  Last month, UT hired Derrick Ansley — a former GA at Alabama under new UT D-coordinator Sal Sunseri — to take over the cornerbacks, leaving Joseph to focus on safeties alone. 

How Joseph feels about that move will certainly factor into his decision on the Cornhusker job.  As will money.  As will his view of where the Tennessee program is headed as compared to Nebraska’s.

Bo Pelini is looking for a new secondary coach after losing Corey Raymond to LSU earlier this week. 

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Cross Explains Decommitment From Tennessee

Imani Cross never intended to decommit from Tennessee.

But to his disappointment, that was the case for the running back from North Hall High School in Gainesville, Ga.

As Cross tells it, the Vols seemed to turn their back on their first commitment of the 2012 class.

“I definitely had high hopes on Tennessee,” he said. “I was a little disappointed but at the same time I realize when one door closes, another one opens. I’m just moving along.”

UT appeared to force that move when its interest in Cross slowed and the Vols began to recruit other running backs. Cross believed UT’s coaches didn’t try to contact him as much as before.

Cross said he recently called UT defensive backs coach and recruiting coordinator Terry Joseph to check in.

“When I did call him they told me there were other backs they were looking at and at the same time they were interviewing other running backs coaches and I would have to be reevaluated,” Cross said.

So Cross decided to reevaluate his own options. He said Vanderbilt, Wisconsin, North Carolina and Virginia have recruited him the hardest since he committed to UT in February. Kentucky, Georgia Tech, Maryland and Purdue have also offered scholarships.

Cross, who’s ranked the No. 19 running back in the nation by ESPN.com, said he has yet to schedule any trips. NCAA rules allow him to take up to five official visits.
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