Train Hard: War Eagle!
Monthly Archive for February, 2009
Running back David Oku is baaaaack — back in Auburn, that is. That’s the word from AuburnSports.com, who says Oku is in Auburn taking an unofficial recruiting visit.
anyone else think he’s ours?
What’s up everyone… You may or may not know that I am a digital journalist reporter for WCBD-TV Channel 2 News in Mt. Pleasant, SC. We have recently been told we must start using Twitter throughout the day to keep our viewers informed as to what stories we are working news wise….So if any of you out there want another link to click on at work while your bored and want to follow my real time news stories… you can add/follow me @ http://twitter.com/WCBDNateStewart
War Damn Eagle
NBC ANNOUNCES NEW PRIMETIME COMEDY-REALITY SERIES CREATED BY JERRY SEINFELD MARKING THE ICONIC COMEDIAN’S FIRST TELEVISION SERIES SINCE ‘SEINFELD’
UNIVERSAL CITY, CALIF. – February 26, 2009 – NBC is proud to announce a new comedy-reality series created by superstar comedian and producer Jerry Seinfeld’s Columbus 81 Productions. Mr. Seinfeld has partnered with Ellen Rakieten, a 23-year veteran of “The Oprah Winfrey Show” on this project.
This new series titled “The Marriage Ref” (working title) will feature opinionated celebrities, comedians and sports stars who will candidly comment, judge and offer different strategies for real-life couples in the midst of a classic marital dispute.
The announcement was made today by Ben Silverman, Co-Chairman, NBC Entertainment and Universal Media Studios.
Describing his new creation, Mr. Seinfeld said, “This is not a therapy show, it’s a comedy show. After nine years of marriage I have discovered that the comedic potential of this subject is quite rich.”
“It will be revealing, edgy, controversial and very, very funny. Picture well-known people weighing in on a couple’s relationship issues — and deciding who is right and who is wrong — right on the spot, like a referee,” added Ms. Rakieten.
Mr. Seinfeld is thrilled to partner with Ms. Rakieten on “The Marriage Ref.” Rakieten joined “The Oprah Winfrey Show” as a producer at its inception in 1986, and was a major force in creating the most dominant program in daytime history.
“There is no better partner for me on this venture than Ellen. She has had such an amazing experience at Harpo, and our minds seem perfectly synchronized on the potential of this idea,” said Mr. Seinfeld.
For two decades Ms. Rakieten’s leadership and creativity earned “The Oprah Winfrey Show” unprecedented ratings. During her long tenure at Harpo, Ms. Rakieten produced over 3500 hours of television.
“NBC has a long and enormously successful relationship with Jerry and this great new concept reflects his incredible and unique point of view,” said Silverman. “Viewers will love this highly relatable new comedy.”
Added Paul Telegdy, Executive Vice President, Alternative Programming, NBC and Universal Media Studios, “While ‘Seinfeld’ was a hilarious look at single life, this new show will focus on the humor of relationships and marriage. It’s a great fit with the slate of alternative comedy we are building at NBC.”
The deal was brokered by Jeanne Newman.
AUBURN, Ala. (AP) — Gus Malzahn isn’t picking favorites among the contenders for No. 1 quarterback leading up to Auburn’s spring practice.
The Tigers’ new offensive coordinator said Kodi Burns won’t automatically hold onto that top spot. In fact, Malzahn said he won’t go into the spring with an established pecking order, giving all the quarterbacks a shot at running his no-huddle, spread offense.
“It’s going to be wide open,” he said Wednesday. “We’re coming into this thing new and everybody’s starting new, and they’re going to have to earn it.”
He said Burns, Neil Caudle, redshirt freshman Barrett Trotter and possibly Chris Todd will receive comparable practice repetitions to start spring practice on March 24, but Malzahn hopes to narrow it down “as soon as possible.”
Burns, who is trying to learn his third system in three years at Auburn, started the final six games of last season but was inconsistent passing.
Signees Tyrik Rollison and Clint Moseley will join the mix in fall camp.
“They’re all starting new,” Malzahn said. “And I think anytime you’re putting in a new system and new coaches at every position, that needs to happen.”
2. Gus does not do two-quarterback systems. There will be one quarterback. Period.
3. Mario Fannin would be a prime candidate for the Wildcat role, Malzahn said. He also believes newcomers Dontae Aycock, Emory Blake and Travante Stallworth could be Wildcats.
4. His goal is to run 80 or more plays a game.
5. The offense will be “fast,” Malzahn repeated several times. The assembled media were skeptical, because we’ve heard that before. But Malzahn was adamant.
“You hear a lot about no huddle and a lot about ‘fast,’ but our goal is to play fast. That’s who we are. That’s what we do. We’re not so much a no-huddle, look-to-the-side team. You will see us do that sometimes. That’s not really who we are. I like to think we’re a little bit different than everyone else.”
This is a break down of Auburn’s 2004 Offense vs. Malzahn’s 2006 Offense at Arkansas
Strength of Schedule: Auburn ……. 5th nationally Arkansas ….. 9th nationally
Total Offense: Auburn …… 25th nationally Arkansas …. 29th nationally
Scoring Offense: Auburn …… 18th nationally Arkansas …. 31st nationally
Yards per play: Auburn …… 6.35 yards Arkansas …. 6.29 yards
TD Ratio: Arkansas ….. 1 every 15.3 plays Auburn ……. 1 every 15.9 plays
3rd down Pct: Auburn …… 46% Arkansas …. 42% Total
Touchdowns: Auburn …… 54 in 13 games Arkansas …. 55 in 14 games
Avg number of 1st downs: Auburn …… 20.8 per game Arkansas …. 17.8 per game
Redzone Scoring Pct: Auburn ……. 79% Arkansas ….. 78%
Redzone TD Pct: Arkansas …… 67% Auburn ……… 62%
Yards gained per possession: Auburn …… 34.8 yards Arkansas …. 31.8 yards
At Oklahoma State, running backs coach Curtis Luper and wide receivers coach Trooper Taylor were just a stone’s throw away from Tulsa and Gus Malzahn’s high-octane offense.
“I was stealing his offense anyway when I was at Oklahoma State,” Taylor said. “Now I don’t have to steal it.”
But he still has to learn it.
Auburn’s coaches have been extending their work hours into the late nights and weekends to learn Malzahn’s quick-hitting, constant-motion offense.
“For us, it’s seven days a week,” Luper said. “Since our families aren’t here, we can kind of do that.”
During Tony Franklin’s brief tenure, a lack of unity among coaches in installing his pass-happy spread attack was apparent, as confusion cropped up game after game before Franklin was fired.
Taylor said the coaches have rallied around Malzahn’s offense and that he was impressed by the offensive coordinator in first meeting him because he refused to call it “The Gus Malzahn offense.”
“His whole deal was it was going to be our offense together as a group to help win championships,” Taylor said. “That was impressive to me.”
Malzahn will inherit a number of speedy, small receivers recruited specifically to be key cogs in Franklin’s offense. Now, the focus will be on how to fit them into it.
“We’re getting into it intimately and seeing where we can put our existing players and how we can plug them into this system,” Luper said. “Now we know how to recruit for it.”
Auburn has gotten lots of positive pub for the recruiting ability of several of the new staff members. Trooper Taylor and Tommy Thigpen in particular, have come in with reputations as outstanding recruiters. Predictably, some mediots have questioned whether anybody on the staff can actually “coach”, or if they can just recruit. I don’t know where the notion that recruiting and coaching are mutually exclusive came from, but it doesn’t hold water. Hard work gets results, whether it’s pursuing great high school athletes, or teaching technique, or game planning. Based on their backgrounds, I think these guys can do it all.
Gus Malzahn is only 4 years into college coaching, but he is a sought-after speaker at coaching clinics around the country. It always seems silly to call a football coach “a genius”, but Malzahn has already proven he is one of the more innovative offensive coaches in the sport. His two years at Tulsa were as productive as any offense in the nation. The fact that his Tulsa offense generated almost 8,000 yards in 2008, averaging 570 per game, is just plain mind-boggling.
I haven’t seen a lot of hype about offensive line coach Jeff Grimes as a recruiter, but his reputation as an offensive line coach is very good in the western half of the country. Grimes has been hired by some of the best offensive coaches in college football, including Dirk Koetter, Ken Hatfield, Dan Hawkins, Gary Crowton, and Bronco Mendenhall. Being sought by and working with those coaches is pretty impressive to me.
The guy coming in with the biggest recruiting rep, at least around the SEC, is wide receivers coach (and assistant head coach) Trooper Taylor. But, can Trooper coach? Well, let’s see what he’s done with wide receivers. At Tennessee, as running backs coach, he had two 1,000 yard rushers in 2004. In 2006, also at UT, he was wide receivers coach, and made an All-American out of Robert Meachem. That year, 3 UT wide receivers combined for over 2400 yards receiving. The following year, in 2007, three NEW wide receivers combined for 2100 receiving yards. Maybe more impressive than his success at Tennessee is the fact that while at Tulane from 1999-2003, Taylor put 4 wide receivers into the NFL, and had a trio in 2001 lead the country with 2,384 yards on 185 catches.
New AU running backs coach Curtis Luper has impressed already with his successful recruitment of Texas high school QB phenom Tyrik Rollison. But can he coach? As running backs coach at New Mexico, he produced the Mountain West Conference’s all-time career rushing leader. At Oklahoma State in 2006, he had 3 running backs combine for 2000 rushing yards, and the OSU Cowboys led the Big Twelve Conference in rushing in both 2006 and 2007.
Tracy Rocker is admired by defensive line recruits for his own accomplishments as a player, having been a two-time All-American, and winning the Lombardi and Outland awards. But he may be a better coach than he is a recruiter. Rocker’s DL at Ole Miss last year led the nation in tackles for loss, and was 4th in the SEC with 39 sacks. Two of his players earned All-America honors in the 2008 season. Prior to following Houston Nutt to Ole Miss, Rocker coached 1st round draft pick Jamaal Anderson, and NFL draft picks Jeb Huckaba and Keith Jackson.
Bottom line, Yes, these guys can recruit. They can also coach, and based on past history, I’m inclined to think they may be better coaches than recruiters. Only time will tell.