Transfer U

By Brad Hubbard | @bradhubbard


We have covered the topic of graduate transfers before but a new crop has emerged and it raises new and different questions.

Dakota PrukopDakota Prukop was the first “name” quarterback to make a move. Like Vernon Adams, Prukop, is moving up from the FCS level (Big Sky Conference as well) to Oregon. Prukop turned down Alabama and Texas in the process.

This is the second year in a row that an FCS quarterback is moving into the quarterback role at Oregon. This begs the question, has Oregon been unable to recruit a young quarterback? Do they really look at their quarterback recruits and think, ‘man, we’re toast if we don’t get a transfer in here’ ? The Oregon coaching staff should do a better job of identifying, recruiting and developing a quarterback because there is no way that crossing your fingers and hoping a graduate transfer QB just decides to go to Eugene.

Texas A&M lost two quarterbacks….in a week! Top recruits Kyle Allen and Kyler Murray both decided to transfer away from College Station. Add that to Kenny Hill, who transferred last year, and that makes three top QB’s who have left the Aggies in the last two years. Unlike the graduate transfer Prukop, Allen and Murray will have to sit out a year just like Hill is currently doing at TCU.

Trevor KnightFormer Oklahoma quarterback (and Sugar Bowl MVP) Trevor Knight has decided to leave Sooner nation behind. Knight started plenty of games for the Sooners but his inconsistent play led to walk-on transfer (and eventual Heisman contender) Baker Mayfield getting the starting nod. Funny thing is, Knight might walk into a starting role at A&M because Hill, Allen and Murray decided to leave.

Patrick TowlesOther graduate transfers this off season include former Kentucky signal-caller Patrick Towles who is moving onto Boston College and former Georgia backup Faton Bauta who will take his skills to Colorado State. Both are eligible to play immediately for their new schools.

Florida’s Will Grier is another quarterback who like Allen and Murray, will have to wait to play. He is under NCAA suspension for essentially PED use and regardless of where he goes, he will still have to serve his suspension.

Earlier this year in the column ‘College Football Free Agency’ that we didn’t think graduate transfers was a trend. We were right, it’s not a trend….it’s a full blown movement!

Players, in particularly quarterbacks, are making it clear that if they don’t feel their job is safe or have the opportunity to move to a bigger and better program then they will jump at the chance.

Sounds just like the working world doesn’t it?

On the other hand, while quarterbacks like Russell Wilson and Vernon Adams have found success, there are plenty who have failed to impress. As we alluded to in the post ‘Transfer Dreams’, just because you started somewhere else doesn’t mean you will succeed (much less start) at another school.

In other words, past performance isn’t indicative of future success.

Schools would be better served by going the parallel route: recruit and develop a quarterback and if a graduate transfer drops in your lap then all the better. Either way you should come out on top. Meanwhile, don’t think for a minute that we’ve seen the end of the graduate transfers.

The Best Day In Sports. Period.

By Brad Hubbard | @bradhubbard

It may be a cosmic event or maybe just plain old luck. Either way, Saturday May 2, 2015 is shaping up to be one of the greatest days in sports history. Just about every major professional sport will be represented and then some. The only question is, is it too much?

Mayweather vs Pacquiao

Let’s start with the one off, the fight between Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao. They won’t actually start fighting until around 8:30pm Pacific standard time (PST) on Saturday at which point they will truly begin to split the estimated $300 million in pay-per-view money. 60-40 to Mayweather of course. It’s the biggest fight boxing has seen since Mayweather took on Oscar De La Hoya. It will probably be the last great matchup for a generation.

Before this of course is a smorgasbord of sporting events.

The 141st running of the Kentucky Derby will take place around 3:25pm PST. It’s the one time a year that a wide spectrum of people care about horse racing and women get to wear big hats.

The events that we are use to seeing this time of year are of course Major League Baseball, Major League Soccer, the NBA Playoffs, NHL Playoffs, and the NFL Draft.

The NFL Draft is the only event where there isn’t any actual sporting activity happening. But this is a football nation and people will be glued to the draft (even the later rounds which will be happening on Saturday). It will be the first time that the Draft has been outside of New York City and the second time that it has been held in the month of May.

Yes, this may go down as the greatest day in sports history. Is it too much though? That’s for you to decide for yourself. There certainly won’t be a lack of options on Saturday that’s for sure. Our advice is to pace yourself and try to find a couple of people to split the $100 Mayweather vs Pacquiao ppv.

What to Watch Fri. 4/3 – Sun. 4/5

All times are Pacific.

Friday April 3rd

Oklahoma City Thunder at Memphis Grizzlies – 5pm ESPN: Two teams gearing up for the playoffs. Should make things interesting.

Montreal Canadiens at Washington Capitals – 4pm NHL Gamecenter: The Habs are locked into the playoffs while the Caps need to keep on winning if they want that Wildcard slot.

REMOTE

 

Saturday April 4th

Liverpool vs Arsenal – 4:45am NBCSN: A solid match first thing Saturday morning.

Vancouver Canucks at Winnipeg Jets – Noon NHL Network: Winnipeg is on the edge of the playoff chase and the Canucks are looking to secure a spot.

Final Four: Michigan State Spartans vs Duke Blue Devils – 3pm TBS: Great matchup between two of the best coaches in college basketball.

Final Four: Wisconsin Badgers vs Kentucky Wildcats – 5:45pm TBS: This is the matchup we’ve been waiting for this college basketball season. Holla!

Portland Timbers vs FC Dallas – 7:30pm MLS Live: While FC Dallas leads the West (and MLS) with 10pts in four games but Portland is the tough place to play and they really need a win.

 

Sunday April 5th

Houston Rockets at Oklahoma City Thunder – 10am ABC: Two teams looking at the playoffs and wondering, ‘Are we gonna play these guys in a month?’

Golden State Warriors at San Antonio Spurs – 4pm NBA TV: The defending champs are starting to get into playoff form. While it’s a regular season game, it will be fun to see how these two teams matchup if they were to meet in a seven game series.

St Louis Blues at Chicago Blackhawks – 4:30pm NBCSN: Two teams jockeying for playoff position.

St Louis Cardinals at Chicago Cubs – 5pm ESPN2: Baseball is back and it’s a St Louis vs Chicago kind of day.

 

The Sunday: The Boom and One Proud Papa

By Brad Hubbard | @bradhubbard

Saturday was suppose to be a low key day of college football. No top 10 matchups and only a few conference games of interest which meant of course that it would be a wild day which it was. Despite the upsets and close games two moments really took the cake. One involved a veteran announcer and the other a former coach celebrating his child’s success.

75 year old Brent Musburger has been calling football for a long time. He is now announcing the SEC Networks primetime game which meant that this week he was in Gainesville calling the Kentucky at Florida game. During OT he dropped ‘boom goes the dynamite!’ on a touchdown run by Kentucky running back Stanley Williams. Yep, he said it and it was glorious.

Possibly the best moment was one that most people were not aware off until Sunday morning. It was of former UCLA QB and Head Coach Rick Neuheisel, who is now an analyst for the PAC-12 Network, cheering on his son Jerry during the UCLA at Texas game.

Neuheisel Watching Son

http://pac-12.com/videos/rick-neuheisel-watches-son-jerry-lead-ucla-victory

Neuheisel’s son came into the game because of an injury to Heisman Trophy candidate Brett Hundley and helped lead UCLA to a hard fought victory over Texas in Dallas. So this came pretty unexpectedly. You could see Rick Neuheisel trying to balance being a dad and being a coach. In the end, being a dad won out.

Credit to the PAC-12 Network for shooting this and getting it out too. It’s such a great moment and with all of the terrible news this week it’s refreshing to see a proud papa celebrating his son’s success. And as Musburger would say, ‘boom goes the dynamite!’