NCAA Football News

Should Florida Fans Worry About Outside the Lines' Discipline Report?

It's the offseason, and that means it's time for scandal.

Florida and Florida State were the subjects of a mini-scandal on Sunday morning, when ESPN's Outside the Lines featured the two schools as the two centerpieces of its larger investigation into the correlation of player discipline and how local law enforcement treats athletes.

In Florida's case, author and investigative reporter Paula Lavigne discovered that 80 Florida football and men's basketball players were named as suspects in more than 100 crimes between 2009-2014, which amounts to 24 percent of the rosters of those sports during the six-year span.

Is that concerning?


But most of these incidents were already known by the public, and those discipline issues were addressed by former head coach Will Muschamp

It was widely known that Florida was the poster child of bad behavior under former head coach Urban Meyer. As Matt Hayes of Sporting News pointed out in his 2012 feature on how Meyer "broke" the Gators, at least 30 football players were arrested under Meyer's watch from 2005-2010.

Janoris Jenkins' second run-in with the law came in January 2011 shortly after Muschamp was hired as Meyer's replacement in Gainesville. Since that time, Muschamp cleaned up the program.  

When quarterback Treon Harris was implicated in a sexual assault claim (which was later withdrawn) in October of last year, player discipline no longer was synonymous with the Florida program. As Brian Schmitz of the Orlando Sentinel pointed out, at the time the Harris new broke, only one Gator had been arrested in the prior 15 months.

When you're running an organization of 85 scholarship 18-22-year-olds, not including walk-ons, 15 months with only one incident is a pretty solid record.

Cleaning up the program is something that Muschamp was particularly proud of, and he mentioned it specifically in the press conference that announced his dismissal in November 2014.

I think that goes back to recruiting, you know, when you make decisions in the recruiting process, the type of young men you want in your locker room and the type of person you want on your football team and the type of individuals you want to represent the University of Florida. That it's an inexact science from the standpoint of the limited amount of contacts we have off campus, but doing your due diligence as a coach and assistant coach to make sure you have outlined for your assistants the type of young man you want in the program and a type of guy ‑‑ if a guy has issues as a 10th and 11th grader, he's probably going to have them as a freshman in college. We have tried to steer clear of that and move forward with the right kind of guy and I think this locker room has got that.

His boss, athletics director Jeremy Foley, even commented on Muschamp's ability to build a culture off the field while he was firing him.

"On a personal level I will miss working with Will every day," Foley said during the dismissal press conference. "He represents everything that is right about college athletics. That's not lip service; that's the flat-out truth. The environment inside our building is the best it's ever been because of Will."

Muschamp may have left new head coach Jim McElwain some offensive line issues to deal with—which early departures compounded—but the new man in charge of the program knows and appreciates the work Muschamp did off the field.

"Will and his staff did an outstanding job building the culture while getting some really good players," McElwain said at SEC spring meetings last month in Destin, Florida.

Florida has nothing to worry about regarding player discipline. 

From a public-perception standpoint, it's never a good thing to have one of the preeminent sports investigative outlets featuring the program in a negative light. And surely, fans and perhaps even coaches on the recruiting trail will use it against the Gators. 

But this has already been combed over time and time again.

The report from Outside the Lines meant to illustrate how some schools do have lingering discipline problems that are either overlooked by local law enforcement or cleverly defended by a local lawyer who's cozy with the athletic department.

That's not ideal because people who break the law—whether they're athletes or not—should be subject to the same legal process that applies to everybody else.

It's not exactly breaking news either.

Florida had—past tense—had a discipline problem and was borderline out of control. The report that aired on Sunday and the subsequent story that appeared online are nothing to worry about. Muschamp didn't produce on the field, but he cleaned up the program off of it.

Florida is better off because of him.


Quotes were obtained firsthand unless otherwise noted. All stats are courtesy of unless otherwise noted, and all recruiting information is courtesy of 247Sports' composite rankings.

Barrett Sallee is the lead SEC college football writer and college football video analyst for Bleacher Report, as well as a host on Bleacher Report Radio on Sirius 93, XM 208.

Follow Barrett on Twitter @BarrettSallee.

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Alabama Football: 10 Best Players in Crimson Tide's History

With a championship legacy that stretches all the way back to the early days of college football, the Alabama Crimson Tide have fielded superstar players for more than a century.

Few programs can compare their All-American totals to the one enjoyed by Alabama, which has also had plenty of players who took home individual awards for excellence at their respective positions. 

As much as overall team success has been the ultimate goal for the Tide's program, it can boast some of the best players in the sport's history.

That's what makes distilling all the decades of Alabama history into one top-10 list of all-time best players so difficult. Different eras yield different kinds of stats. Narrowing down a group of more than 100 All-Americans means plenty of great players aren't going to make the cut.

School records, All-American selections, championships and individual awards are what determined the following top-10 list. It's far from an exact science, so there is plenty of room for debate and your own personal rankings in the comments below.

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What the Big Ten's Recruiting Rise Means for College Football

Three years ago, Urban Meyer took the podium at Big Ten media day for the first time as Ohio State's head coach.

In retrospect, his words might wind up being prophetic.

Meyer was both a stranger and expected savior—not just for a Buckeyes team coming off its first losing season in 23 years, but a conference that was struggling to maintain national relevance. A two-time national champion at Florida, Meyer had played a key role in turning the SEC into the country's premier conference.

And on that July 2012 afternoon in Chicago, reporters wanted to know how Meyer's new league could do the same.

"The SEC, the last few years, is kind of the kingpin with the success they've had in the BCS," Meyer said in response to a question about the perception of the Big Ten. "The one thing about college football, it's very cyclical. And the Big Ten for many, many years was without question the No. 1 conference in America. Right now, we're not, but there's a lot of coaches and players right now very intent on making it the best conference in America."

Some of the coaches have since changed and the Big Ten isn't quite there yet, but if the past six months have shown anything, it's that Meyer was offering more than just coachspeak at the time.

As first pointed out by recruiting analyst Marc Givler on Twitter, recent recruiting rankings prove as much, with the Big Ten laying claim to eight of the top 30 classes in Rivals' team rankings for the 2016 class.

The Big Ten's big showing holds true for the composite rankings as well, where eight teams are also ranked in the top 30, including four in the top 14.

For comparison's sake, the Big Ten possessed just three top-30 classes in 2015, four in 2014, three in 2013 and two in 2012. In 2011, Ohio State's last pre-Meyer recruiting class, four Big Ten teams ranked in 247Sports' top 30, three of which were ranked 16th or lower with the Buckeyes touting the highest-ranked class in the league at No. 7.

There's still more than seven months to go until national signing day, but should the Big Ten maintain its momentum, 2016 could mark the conference's most impressive recruiting haul since 247Sports began keeping track of recruiting rankings in 1999.

Recruiting and on-field performance have always shared a reciprocal relationship, as it's hard to win without recruiting quality players and it's hard to recruit quality players without winning.

It's not quite like asking whether it was the chicken or the egg that came first, as wins on the field don't always result in victories on the recruiting trail, but it's hard to ignore the success that a strong recruiting showing can bring.

For proof, one must look no further than the Buckeyes, who bounced back from their losing campaign in 2011 to reel off a 38-3 record in their first three years under Meyer, including last season's run to the national championship.

It's not a coincidence that Ohio State's first three classes under Meyer each ranked in the nation's top five, something that the three-time national champion head coach admitted he takes note of on a yearly basis.

"We do pay attention to that," Meyer said in 2013. "There is a correlation between how teams do, where your team is ranked, recruiting class is ranked."

If that's true—and further evidence presented by AthlonSports' Braden Gall would suggest it is—then the Big Ten could be in line for a historic run.

Not only are Ohio State (No. 2), Michigan State (No. 6), Penn State (No. 12), Michigan (No. 14), Minnesota (No. 26), Maryland (No. 27), Nebraska (No. 28) and Northwestern (No. 30) all on pace to add significant talent to their respective rosters next winter, but the reputation of the once-downtrodden league has already begun to shift.

The Buckeyes' run through the College Football Playoff has obviously played a big role in that process, which has also been aided by the Wolverines' hiring of Jim Harbaugh and major bowl wins for both the Spartans and Wisconsin in the past year.

Add in bowl wins for Rutgers and Penn State in 2014, and it appears the Big Ten's recent recruiting rise could help create a perfect storm of sustained success.

"There was a perception out there," Meyer said this past spring. "I’m a believer that there’s only one way to eliminate perception, and that’s to get better. I think Michigan State has done a lot to help the Big Ten Conference. They won the Rose Bowl the year before and then they won a big bowl game this year.

"I think Ohio State’s done our share. We did not win a bowl game [in 2013]. Wisconsin beating Auburn. Obviously it’s a one-year cycle and we've got to do this for a while, where the SEC had a seven-year cycle going. So there’s a lot of pressure on the Big Ten to keep it rolling because it certainly did help change the perception."

As Meyer mentioned, his new conference has still yet to recreate the magic that his old one did, when four SEC programs won every national title from 2006-2012.

But 2014 was certainly a start, and if the recruiting rankings are any indication, it could be the start of something special as the Big Ten continues to close the gap on the league that is still considered the country's best.

The Big Ten and the SEC? Comparisons between the two don't seem as laughable as they did just three years ago—especially not to the head coach who may have helped jump-start a dynasty in each.

"Oh, very comparable," Meyer said this spring of the Big Ten and SEC. "I think [the Big Ten East Division] is kind of ridiculous right now as far as the quality of teams in it. And you can see how they did in bowl games.

"And the future too, I see a bunch of good recruiting going on on our side of the conference as well."

In more ways than one, Meyer's not alone.


Ben Axelrod is Bleacher Report's Big Ten lead writer. You can follow him on Twitter @BenAxelrod. Unless noted otherwise, all quotes were obtained firsthand. All statistics courtesy of Recruiting rankings courtesy of 247Sports.

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The Opening 2015: Breaking Down Each Top-25 Class' Commits, Targets in Beaverton

An expansive collection of elite college football recruits invade Beaverton, Oregon, in July for The Opening, an annual prospect showcase held at Nike's world headquarters. The action, which begins July 5 with Elite 11 finals, features one-on-one showdowns, battles between linemen and a star-studded seven-on-seven tournament.

Plenty of collegiate programs will follow the competition closely, as many committed players are set to test their skills. Meanwhile, recruits who remain undecided have an opportunity to further entice teams seven months shy of national signing day.

Here's a look at athletes on the radar for each squad currently listed among the top 25 in 247Sports' composite class rankings.

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Auburn vs. Alabama: Who Will Have a Better 2015 Season?

The 2015 Iron Bowl may be months away, but that doesn't mean the speculation can't begin. Alabama and Auburn will square off, and one team will earn the state's bragging rights. 

Bleacher Report's Barrett Sallee joined Stephen Nelson to discuss which team is primed to win the big game.

Who will win the 2015 Iron Bowl? Check out the video and let us know!    

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Auburn Football: How Tigers Can Win with a Running Back-by-Committee Approach

Auburn head coach Gus Malzahn might not know that old Black Eyed Peas song "Let's Get It Started," but make no mistake, he lives it.

During the first two years of his tenure as Auburn's head coach, his Tigers have kept runnin' and runnin', runnin' and runnin'.

Tre Mason won the No. 1 tailback spot early in the 2013 season and ripped off 1,816 rushing yards and 23 touchdowns en route to the SEC rushing crown and a trip to New York City as a finalist for the Heisman Trophy. 

A year later, the man he beat out—Cameron Artis-Payne—dashed for 1,608 yards and 13 touchdowns, also leading the SEC in rushing.

During his nine years as a college head or assistant coach, Malzahn has produced 12, 1,000-yard rushers.

Who's next?

It could be a combination of talented rushers.

Junior college transfer Jovon Robinson, sophomore "Roc" Thomas, redshirt sophomore Peyton Barber and true freshman Kerryon Johnson will all compete for the top spot on the depth chart during fall camp.

Does one running back need to emerge? 

In a perfect world for Auburn, yes, because Malzahn and offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee would ideally like to keep one No. 1 tailback in for entire drives so that the Tigers don't have to substitute and can operate at a high tempo.

It's not a requirement for Auburn to have a true No. 1, though.

At 6'0", 230 pounds, Robinson has everything Malzahn wants in an inside running back—something that Mason and Artis-Payne both were. He was an absolute monster two years ago at Georgia Military College, rushing for 2,387 yards and 34 touchdowns, setting national junior college rushing records in the process. 

He's already getting a considerable amount of hype. He landed on Phil Steele's preseason fourth-team All-SEC team without having so much as one FBS carry under his belt. Who's alongside Robinson? Missouri's Russell Hansbrough, who rushed for 1,084 yards and 10 touchdowns a year ago.

Not bad company to keep.

What's more, he proved this spring that he has picked up his pass-protection responsibilities well.

"If he knows who he's getting, he does a really nice job there," running backs coach Tim Horton said, according to Joel A. Erickson of "From a pass protection standpoint, I think Jovon's been the most efficient and effective."

From a pure running perspective, though, Thomas might have an edge heading into fall camp. 

The 5'10", 203-pound former "Mr. Football" in the state of Alabama was known primarily as a slasher and changeup back as a true freshman. A funny thing happened in the spring game, though—he went north/south much more than he did as a true freshman and finished the day with 69 yards and two scores, according to stats released by the school.

"I know Coach (Tim) Horton's been working real hard about those guys just making one cut and getting their pads low and get some extra yards. I think they've improved throughout the spring in that area," Malzahn said, according to Auburn's postgame quotes.

That's huge for Thomas and enormous for the Tigers, because if Thomas can anticipate and hit those holes on time, his speed and shiftiness will allow him to turn those three-yard gains into eight-yard gains and more.

So what should Auburn do?

Play both of them at the same time if Malzahn can use them both to his advantage.

Thomas can be used in a variety of ways, including as an edge threat on inverse veer plays and read-option plays where quarterback Jeremy Johnson adds another element to rushing attack, can be a very dangerous slot receiver and go inside when needed.

Robinson can line up as the true tailback with Thomas motioning in at times or providing the option on jet sweeps.

The two primary contenders for the running back job at Auburn are vastly different players, much like Mason and Artis-Payne differed from former Tiger and jet sweep specialist Corey Grant. So use them both—give Thomas more true No. 1 running back responsibilities than Grant got.

If that happens, Barber and Johnson can battle it out for backup roles behind the duo, everybody can stay fresh and Auburn's rushing attack won't miss a beat.

In an ideal world, sure, Auburn would like to have a true No. 1 running back; but since both Thomas and Robinson are capable of handling the load while excelling in slightly different roles, the Tigers could benefit from both being on the field at the same time.


Quotes were obtained firsthand unless otherwise noted. All stats are courtesy of unless otherwise noted, and all recruiting information is courtesy of 247Sports' composite rankings.

Barrett Sallee is the lead SEC college football writer and college football video analyst for Bleacher Report, as well as a host on Bleacher Report Radio on Sirius 93, XM 208.

Follow Barrett on Twitter @BarrettSallee.


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Tale of the Tape: Will Treon Harris or Will Grier Win Florida's Starting QB Job?

The Florida Gators have been searching for a solid quarterback for the past few years, and the search rages on as Treon Harris and Will Grier are battling it out for the starting nod. 

Bleacher Report's College Football Analyst Barrett Sallee joins Stephen Nelson as they discuss who will win the starting QB position. 

Who will win the job? Check out the video and let us know! 

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Mississippi State's Dan Mullen Calls out Jim Harbaugh and Satellite Camps

Several SEC coaches have already voiced their displeasure with satellite camps this offseason, but Mississippi State's Dan Mullen took it a step further on Monday night by directly calling out the man responsible for the conference's frustrations—Michigan's Jim Harbaugh.

Mullen was asked to share his thoughts on the satellite camp debate during an interview on SuperTalk Mississippi, and the Mississippi State coach didn't hold back in his criticisms of Harbaugh:

"The satellite camps, they're recruiting camps," Mullen said. "Basically it's a recruiting thing and a recruiting fair that they're doing. I'd imagine, Jim Harbaugh, if he's going to have a camp, would want to coach the kids in Michigan—the young kids in Michigan—maybe how to be better football players."

The Bulldogs head coach, whose team beat Michigan by a score of 52-14 in the 2011 Gator Bowl, said he was a fan of bringing young players onto the Mississippi State campus and teaching them football instead of the satellite camps.

"I'm sure they have [a camp on Michigan's campus]," Mullen said. "So why do they need one all over the place? The only purpose for it is recruiting. I don't think it's the right purpose for camps.

"We've probably had 1,000 kids on campus in camps. There's probably a couple guys who will be SEC players out of that group. There's a lot of guys learning a lot of football. That's our job as coaches to promote the game and help people be better football players, not just to go out and go recruit."

According to's Brendan F. Quinn, Michigan is holding two such camps in Ann Arbor this week—"Exposure U" and the "Aerial Assault" quarterback camp.

Harbaugh received plenty of attention earlier this year, during the early stages of this year's satellite camp debate, by "cordially" inviting every college coach in the country to Michigan's "Exposure U."

The SEC has banned coaches from hosting camps outside of a 50-mile radius from their campuses.

According to Bleacher Report's Barrett Sallee, the conference announced last month it would introduce national legislation that mirrors its own rule on satellite camps. If the legislation is not adopted, the SEC will lift its ban on satellite camps for next season.

SEC coaches' complaints over satellite camps are nothing new, as schools such as Notre Dame and Penn State have entered the conference's footprint to hold camps over the last few seasons. 

But the new Michigan coach has become the face of the frustration for the SEC because of his quick success with the camps—and perhaps that not-so-subtle jab in the invitation to attend "Exposure U."

Harbaugh hosted satellite camps in Prattville, Alabama, and Tampa, Florida, as part of Michigan's "Summer Swarm" Tour earlier this month, which netted several new commitments for the Wolverines.

Prattville, which is also home to 3-star Michigan fullback commitment Kingston Davis, is 176 miles from Mississippi State's campus and much closer to those of Alabama's Nick Saban and Auburn's Gus Malzahn. Both coaches have also stated their concerns with satellite camps.

But no one from the SEC had directly called out Harbaugh by name until Monday night, when Mullen added even more fuel to what has been a nationwide fire this offseason.

And like Michigan's recent hot streak in recruiting, this fire doesn't look like it's cooling down anytime soon.


Recruiting information courtesy of 247Sports.

Justin Ferguson is an on-call college football writer at Bleacher Report. You can follow him on Twitter @JFergusonBR.

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Who Is the Most Versatile Player on LSU's Roster in 2015?

LSU has an incredible amount of talent on their roster heading into next season, and the Tigers are looking to contend for an SEC title with this deep group in 2015. 

Watch as Bleacher Report College Football Analyst Michael Felder predicts who will be the most versatile player for LSU next season.

Who do you think will be the do-it-all player for the Tigers next year? Check out the video and let us know!

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College Football Schools That Belong in Different Conferences

Did you know that West Virginia is located a convenient 860 miles away from its nearest Big 12 opponent?

It’s a 12-hour drive that ends with the opportunity to watch the Mountaineers square off with Iowa State.

Running alongside the growing list of geographic blunders, other FBS programs aren’t in the appropriate league from a competitive standpoint. And then there are those schools that are situated in a conference that doesn’t provide the heated rivalries necessary to keep the flame of passion burning.

The 10 moves offered here will try to fix a variety of questionable conference affiliations. What it won’t attempt to do is reverse the most recent wave of realignment—returning Maryland to the ACC or Texas A&M to the Big 12.

The net effect to the Power Five leagues is the SEC stays even and the Big 12 picks up the two schools it needs to host a championship game. The ACC loses two members to return to 12, while the Big Ten and Pac-12 both gain two new schools.

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Nebraska Football: Ranking the 5 Most Consistent Players on the Cornhuskers

Nebraska football fans are a slightly different breed than most other college football fans. While other fanbases will lionize the highlight-reel escapades of their superstars, Nebraska fans celebrate offensive linemen and the tough guys who do the dirty work, day in and day out, to help their team succeed.

In that vein, let’s take a look at the guys new head coach Mike Riley has inherited who are the most consistent performers on the roster.

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Virginia Tech Football: Ranking the 5 Most Consistent Players on the Hokies

During Virginia Tech's current run of 22 consecutive seasons appearing in a bowl game, consistency became the trademark of the Hokies' program. Defense, special teams and a strong running game powered the Hokies to multiple 10-win seasons and BCS appearances.

However, the Hokies have struggled a bit over the last three seasons. Sure, Tech has reached a bowl game in each of those seasons, but it hasn't been easy. The Hokies needed a win over hated rival Virginia in the season finale to keep their streak alive in 2014. 

The biggest problem facing the Hokies over that time? A lack of consistency.

Bud Foster's defense has done its part and is annually among the best in the country. Unfortunately, the Hokies have struggled to find consistency under center, and the once-dominant special teams units have been outplayed. 

Can the Hokies return to the top of the ACC in 2015? If so, it will be because Tech finds consistency in all three phases. Here's a look at VT's five most consistent—not necessarily the best—players on the 2015 roster. 

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Big 12 Football: Best Players at Every Position

It's mid-June. With no practice or anything else to speak of, college fans are left to their own devices. That usually means debating never-ending circles of subjectivity like which players are the best.

The Big 12 might not be the most heralded conference at the moment, but it has its fair share of talent. From TCU quarterback Trevone Boykin to Oklahoma running back Samaje Perine and Baylor defensive end Shawn Oakman, there's a lot of quality talent on the field.

But who is the best at each position? 

We took 2014 stats into consideration, as well as preseason/postseason accolades, but players listed don't necessarily have to be stat leaders. Injuries, for example, can affect a player's numbers. 

And so, let us go forth with the best players at every position in the Big 12—a list that surely will not start a single debate or incite angry responses. Nope, none at all. 

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Insider Buzz: Under-the-Radar Prospects Who Will Shoot Up Recruiting Boards

The Sound Mind Sound Body camp in Detroit, Michigan, offered some of the best young talent in the country, as players came together to meet some big-time coaches and play some football. 

Bleacher Report national recruiting analyst Sanjay Kirpalani joined Stephen Nelson to discuss some under-the-radar recruits to watch out for. 

Which of these recruits will have a big impact at the next level? Check out the video, and let us know!

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Rapid-Fire Predictions for Top Uncommitted Recruits from Louisiana

The state of Louisiana has produced some of the best players in college football. There are a ton of uncommitted players out there who have yet to sign on the dotted line. 

Bleacher Report's Stephen Nelson was joined by National Recruiting Analyst Sanjay Kirpalani as they discussed all the top players from Louisiana.  

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Ohio State QB Commit Shows off His Buckeyes Tattoo

Danny Clark, 4-star pro-style QB, per 247Sports, and future Ohio State Buckeye is so committed to his future school that he decided to get a tattoo to prove it.

Watch as the youngster explains the loyal ink in the video above.  

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Which 2016 Recruits Does Tennessee Need to Land to Continue Incredible Momentum?

Tennessee has an incredible amount of talent heading into next season. The Volunteers pulled in one of the most dynamic classes in 2015, but can they repeat the success?

Bleacher Report College Football Analyst Michael Felder gives his surprises and disappointments from the Volunteers recruiting class.

How good can Tennessee be next season? Check out the video and let us know!

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