Thursday, September 29, 2011

What's wrong with Genshaft blocking UCF entry into Big East?

USF president Judy Genshaft has denied reports that she is spearheading a movement to block Central Florida’s entry into the Big East Conference.

Before anyone gets into whether it’s true or not a better question is whether she should be praised or maligned.

It’s no secret USF cannot get into the ACC because FSU and Miami are adamantly opposed and Florida would never push for the Bulls to become a member of the SEC.

To make matters worse, with the demise of the Big East a possibility, USF is not being talked about an addition to any other BCS conference though the ACC and SEC would seem the most logical because of the geography.

So is Genshaft just protecting her school? It seems you can make a good argument for that especially with college presidents just looking after me, me and not considering the collateral damage they are causing in the conference realignment frenzy.

Several newspapers, including New Jersey’s largest newspaper, the Newark Star-Ledger and the Boston Globe have accused Genshaft of blocking the University of Central Florida’s entry into the Big East Conference.

Genshaft called the allegations false and said she is not stopping any university from coming into the Big East. She said when a school from the same state as a current Big East member wants to join those schools are usually silent.

The Big East football membership is in trouble with recent announcements by Syracuse and Pittsburgh they are leaving the conference for the ACC. Due to contractual obligations they might not be able to leave until after the 2013 football season.

In the meantime, Big East officials are looking at inviting other schools. Navy and the Air Force Academy at the top of their list.

Those statements that are out in the press are not true. That is not the case,” Genshaft said.

“I am not stopping any university from coming in. What is happening is the league, or the conference, now is looking at schools and they have looked very much at schools that are not in any of the states that are represented by the Big East schools right now. The ones that they’re looking at right now, they do not sit in any state that the Big East schools currently are inn,” she said.

The presidents of the Big East member schools will discuss the future of the conference at a meeting this weekend, UConn President Susan Herbst said Wednesday.

"Big East presidents have been engaged in frequent communication by phone or in person," she said. "We're committed together to make the Big East work, to make it stronger in spite of the announcement that Syracuse and Pittsburgh will leave to go to the ACC.”


Mike Jenkins continues to play like his '09 Pro Bowl season

Mike Jenkins is looking more like the Pro Bowler we saw in ‘09 .

The cornerback out of Southeast was solid against Washington Monday night making three sure-stop solo tackles that prevented a big gain and covered Redskins’ receivers like a blanket.

His only disappointment was not holding onto a potential interception. He continues to play hard despite a sprained shoulder that forced him to temporarily leave the game and has eight solo tackles and two pass deflections in three games.

In his Pro Bowl year in 2009 Jenkins had 19 pass deflections and five interceptions. Last year he slumped to only nine pass deflections and one interception in a season that was considered lost.

Jenkins is determined to get back to his Pro Bowl style of play the the talent he showed at USF. So far this year he has been a sure tackler with eight solo tackles and has been among the best cover corners in the country.

Former 'Canes star Axon still toting the ball

A lot of people are asking about Ben Axon. Glad to report he is alive and well though not carrying the rock as much as he did last year when he led national JUCO runner-up Butler Community College in rushing.

Axon transferred to Holmes CC in Mississippi because he needed a course to graduate in December that he couldn’t get at Butler CC, according to Manatee assistant coach Chris Conboy.

Axon has carried the ball only 10 times for 42 yards, but is reportedly still a top FBS prospect.


Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Adrian McPherson continues to shine in backup role

Patience must be a virtue for Adrian McPherson.

The Southeast High legend continues to hang tough with the Montreal Alouettes though he doesn't get the respect he deserves.

McPherson is backing up Canadian Football League legend Anthony Calvillo and can’t get any respect. In he CFL Calvillo is looked upon as a combination of Tom Brady, John Elway and Johnny Unitas.

Calvillo suffered a concussion last week against Edmonton. McPherson came off the bench completed 6 of 6 passes for 92 yards and ran 45 yards on five carries show more athleticism than his aging counterpart.

But all the talk this week is about Calvillo coming back Friday. Apparently the CFL policy on concussions is like the old NFL: If you can stand and walk a straight line you are okay to play.

In a relief role this season, McPherson has completed 25 of 37 passes for 282 yards with one touchdown and one interception. He has rushed 40 times for 157 yards and two touchdowns.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

USF ends homestand with 52-24 rout over UTEP

USF routed UTEP 52-24 Saturday night at Raymond James Stadium to end its homestand with three straight dominating victories, but Bulls head coach Skip Holtz was far from pleased.

The Bulls begin Big East Conference play Thursday night at Pittsburgh and Holtz's biggest worry is special teams and his secondary, which allowed 240 yards passing and two touchdowns by UTEP quarterback Carson Meger.

UTEP had 251 yards on kickoff returns averaging 32 yards per return, which was the result of a a lot of missed tackles.

Holtz said a lot of the starters have been asking him to go on special teams and he said he is considering that and will make a decision after he reviews the game film.

B.J. Daniels had a stellar night running for 130 yards on 15 carries and completed 15 of 24 passes for 202 yards with two touchdown passes; both to Lindsay Lamar.

Terrence Mitchell was taken off the field on stretcher. Holtz said it was due to what could be a concussion and he was moving all his limbs and there was no neck injury involved.

"We have to do a better job with our pass defense. We played very poorly and lacked confidence. We almost played scared on the back-end," Holtz said.

USF Gamer: Bulls go up early 14-7 on UTEP

USF didn't waste any time getting on the board against UTEP when quaterback B.J. Daniels broke free for a career long 71 yard touchdown run Saturday night at Raymond James.

But the Miners answered with a big kickoff return that gave them a first down on the USF 33 and scored five plays later to tie the score at 7-7 with less than five minutes gone in the game.

But USF answered that with a 78 yard, 10 play drive that was capped off with a three-yard TD by Darrell Scott.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

East Carolina applies for membership in Big East

East Carolina announced today that is has applied for membership in the Big East Conference and no one seems to be pushing harder than Pirates head football coach Ruffin McNeal.

At his press conference this week, McNeal said: “If Conference USA was to dissolve and somebody picked East Carolina, they would be getting a blessing because we have the total package,” McNeill said. “You want fan support? We have it. You want facilities? We have them. You want market value? We reach all of eastern North Carolina, over to Raleigh and Charlotte and up into Virginia, areas people don’t always think about. We go everywhere.”

Meanwhile Reports continue to abound that Connecticut has not committed to staying in the Big East Conference as officials from that league reported Tuesday night.

UConn officials say they are looking at other options. Officials from West Virginia and Rutgers echoed similar thoughts on Monday, but seem less adamant that Connecticut about leaving the Big East.

Big East sources continue to repeat that the league is committed to recruiting new members with Navy and Air Force at the top of that list. Navy is an independent and Air Force is a member of the Mountain West Conference.

Navy has played in eight straight bowl games and Air Force has been in four straight. If they join the Big East they might insist Army comes along and it seems certain the league would be open to that. Navy has enjoyed its status as an independent and it is questionable whether it would want to join the Big East.

USF hoping to keep BCS status as Big East goes through shakeup-

It’s hard to tell who to believe these days in regards to conference re-alignment.

It makes one wonder about a statement released by the Big East Conference Tuesday night after holding an emergency session in New York City.

In a one paragraph statement, Big East Officials said they were committed to recruiting top level teams for their conference and the remaining football members have committed to stay.

Soon after the meeting, the statement on commitments was refuted by several reports. Most notably that Connecticut did not make a commitment and is pursuing entry into the ACC.

Big East Commissioner John Marinatto said there is not an urgent timetable to add other teams because Syracuse and Pittsburgh, which announced they are going to the ACC, are contractually obligated to the Big East through the 2013 football season.

It makes you wonder if Marinatto is naive or just trying to keep the wolves off his back and save his job. Contracts are broken all the time. It's one reason the ACC recently upped its exit fee to $20 million.

It has been reported that the Big East is pursuing the services academics, mainly Navy and Air Force along with Army. The reports say the conference has the University of Central Florida and East Carolina on the next tier of teams it is thinking of inviting to its football conference.

If the BCS remains intact with all that is going on it’s uncertain if those schools would help the Big East remain a BCS football conference. Read more: