Moore sole Carolinas player on Butkus list ... New BCS
voters panel already in for shakeup
destination has well-worn path to ECU ... NCAA adds extra
year to Gamecocks' probation
nets suspension for ECU's Flournoy ... Cincinnati will enter
Big East without Huggins ... VPI poised to pony up to keep
Virginia announces halt to ECU ticket sales ... Polling
company unveils official BCS voters list
West angling for clearer path to BCS
Press preseason college football poll
signs $1.7 million per year deal with UVa
West tidying up postseason deals
1070 touts Pirates, Panthers, new shows ... Fort Worth Bowl
embraces Mountain West, TCU... NYC schools reap windfall
from NCAA-NIT deal
inks football coach to long-term pact ... NCAA, NIT
apparently come to terms in lawsuit
takes stand in NCAA-NIT legal clash
decree has some schools on war path
sheriff brings law and order to Gatorville
2005 College Football Hall of Fame class
Bend at odds with Hall of Fame over $$$
Stadium among 'shrines' on pigskin 'tour'
offense may stay in holster awhile
News Nuggets, 08.27.05
— — — — —
NOTES FROM ECU AND BEYOND...
Previous Day Nuggets...
Next Day Nuggets...
Compiled from staff reports
and electronic dispatches
Huggins ouster speeds up Cincy AD's departure
CINCINNATI — Andy Kennedy was hired as
interim head coach at Cincinnati on Friday, two days after Bob Huggins was
forced out as the Bearcats' basketball coach.
Kennedy had been Huggins' top assistant
and served as recruiting coordinator the past four years. Before that, he
spent five years as an assistant at UAB, where he is the school's No. 2
The 37-year-old Kennedy said he is
grateful for the opportunity, and he has Huggins' blessing.
``This has been a very difficult time
for men's basketball at the University of Cincinnati,'' Kennedy said. ``I
have been given the charge to move this program forward, to put the focus
back on our student-athletes.''
Outgoing athletic director Bob Goin
will step down on Jan. 1 so his successor can evaluate the program before
searching for a permanent replacement for Huggins, spokesman Tom Hathaway
said. Goin had been expected to wait until June 30 to retire as athletic
Goin will take another job with the
university for the final six months of his contract, Hathaway said.
Huggins quit Wednesday, a day after the
school said he would be fired if he didn't resign. He agreed to a $3 million
buyout for the rest of his contract.
Richard Katz, Huggins' lawyer, said
Thursday he and the university's lawyer probably won't complete details of
the buyout until next week.
The sides are discussing when Huggins
will leave and how much he will get. The school is willing to let him stay
as an adviser for three months, easing the transition to an interim coach.
Huggins led Cincinnati to No. 1
rankings, a Final Four and 14 consecutive NCAA tournament appearances during
his 16 seasons at Cincinnati. The Bearcats also had numerous player arrests
and violations during his stay, drawing NCAA probation.
Kennedy said he had mixed emotions
about taking over for Huggins.
``We're all dealing with this as best
we can,'' Kennedy said. ``We're not going to lie down, I assure you,
tomorrow. We are not going to forfeit this season. We're going to do what we
came here to do, and that's push forward.''
Kennedy said he knew when he accepted
the job that he could have a brief tenure.
``I'm the interim head coach,'' he
said. ``That means today, and I guess the rest is up to debate.''
NCAA issues 'heads up' on new spearing rule
NEW YORK — The NCAA has a warning for
college football players: See what you hit or expect to get flagged.
The NCAA changed its spearing rule in
the offseason to remove any reference to intent. The old rule penalized
players who intentionally led with their helmets, forcing officials to judge
whether a dangerous, high-speed hit was deliberate. Not anymore.
Georgia athletic trainer Ron Courson,
who headed a task force that studied the rule and initiated the change, said
he hopes that more penalties will lead to a safer game.
``If we're in a game where we have five
holding penalties, I know it's going to be addressed on Monday,'' Courson
said. ``If we have five of these penalties, it's going to get addressed.''
Courson felt compelled to do something
about the spearing rule after he was an eyewitness to one of the scariest
hits of the 2004 season.
``Football is a violent game even if
played appropriately, but if you do something inappropriate it can change
your life,'' he said.
Georgia's Reggie Brown made a catch
over the middle against Auburn and before he could turn up field, Junior
Rosegreen flattened the receiver with a helmet-to-helmet hit that sent
chills through Jordan-Hare Stadium.
Courson attended to Brown as the player
lay motionless on the field.
Brown was lucky: He only ended up with
a concussion. Rosegreen was even luckier. The way he led with his head left
him vulnerable to a spine injury.
The hit got Courson thinking about how
rarely he's seen spearing called in college football. The problem, he found,
was in the wording of the rule.
``The rule said 'He must intentionally
use his helmet to spear,' and we felt like it's hard to find an official to
realize whether or not the players intentionally used it or whether he was
just making a hit,'' Southeastern Conference coordinator of officials Bobby
Gaston said. ``So that will be a rule and a point of emphasis, not only in
our conference, but nationally.''
The NCAA is providing each school with
posters showing what an illegal hit looks like. Courson also put together a
video with examples of dangerous hits along with a presentation for athletic
trainers to show their players and coaches.
Florida safety Jarvis Herring said the
``See What You Hit'' sign is in the Gators' locker room.
``The way we practice, we're taught to
keep our head up anyway, so it's not a big change,'' he said. ``But we're
aware of the new rules. We just don't know how it's going play out in games.
Hopefully, it doesn't change much.''
Spearing generally brings to mind a
tackler lowering his head and planting his helmet into another player's
While it may seem that the player on
the receiving end of such hits is most vulnerable, the player delivering the
blow is in far greater danger, Courson said.
``Our team doctors came and talked to
our team about spearing and said how the intent of the rule is really to
protect the guy who is spearing,'' Notre Dame coach Charlie Weis said.
The difference between a safe hit and a
potentially fatal one is mere inches.
``When you bend that head forward your
spine becomes perfectly straight and it can't absorb shock,'' Courson said.
``My head stops and my body is still going. It's called axial loading.''
Two of the most tragic and well-known
examples of what can happen when a tackler drops his head are the cases of
Chucky Mullins and Curtis Williams. Mullins was a defensive back for
Mississippi who was left paralyzed after a hit he delivered in a game
against Vanderbilt in 1989. He died 18 months later.
Williams was playing defensive back for
Washington when he was paralyzed trying to make a tackle against Stanford in
2000. Like Mullins, Williams died 18 months later.
``Unless you've been around somebody
that's had one of those serious neck injuries, you just don't know how
devastating it can be,'' Tennessee coach Phillip Fulmer said.
Last season, a helmet-to-helmet hit
left Tennessee Tech receiver Drew Hixon with a serious head injury. Hixon is
returning to school, but not the football team, this fall.
``This isn't an epidemic, but we do see
a couple a year where you say, 'That was a dangerous hit,''' NCAA associated
director Ty Halpin said.
Courson hopes the media will be more
discerning about what hits they glorify on television. Rosegreen's hit on
Brown was all over the highlight shows.
``If the media doesn't realize what's
an illegal hit, kids are going to see it and say 'I want to be on the
highlights,' and the media is teaching bad habits,'' he said.
News Nuggets are
compiled periodically based on material supplied by staff members; data
published by ECU, Conference USA and its member
schools; and reports from Associated Press and
other sources. Copyright 2005
Bonesville.net and other publishers. All rights reserved. This material may not be
published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.