SEC Football Daily: July 30th


Synthetic marijuana is the latest front on the war on drugs waged by federal agencies and the NCAA. Commonly known as K2 and Spice, synthetic marijuana is becoming an increasing problem in college athletics. It was legal in the state of Alabama until last year. Spice consists of dried leaves from herbal products that have been treated with chemicals to mimic the effects of marijuana. “There just seems to be an explosion in the last few years of people developing synthetic mood-altering drugs,” Wilfert said. “It’s not something we’d seen before.” [AL]

The new kickoff rules could have a large effect on college football in general, particularly with starting field position and game planning. Because of the injuries that frequently occur on kickoffs, college football as a whole has new rules to save injuries. Kickoffs will now be at the 35-yard line instead of the 30, and touchbacks will be brought out to the 25 instead of the 20. “One view was the receiving team will now be a little quicker to say, ‘I’ll just take a knee and take it to the 25,'” said Steve Shaw, head of SEC officials. “But in talking to some of the special teams coaches in the spring, those that have really good kickers and good coverage will be tempted now to sky kick it and see if they can pin them in. The dynamics of how those rules come together will be intriguing to watch.” [AL]

Arkansas FB Kiero Small will play on both sides of the ball this season. Small came to Arkansas to play FB, but he got a look at LB this spring in Paul Haynes’ defense. “As Coach [John L.] Smith has said, he’s too good of a football player to have on the sidelines,” Haynes said. “So, when Paul [Petrino] and those guys are not using him, he’ll be over there with us. We’ve just got to figure out what’s the best way to put him in there, the smartest way to put him in there, and get him in there and do it.” [Arkansas Sports 360]

Florida picked up the top CB in the country last Friday. Vernon Hargreaves said he always wanted to go to UF since they had offered him. “I just sat down with coach Muschamp and coach (Travaris) Robinson and told them that’s where I wanted to go,” Hargreaves said. “I just kind of fell in love with the place.” Hargreaves’ father coaches at South Florida. [Gator Sports]

Florida is going to have to rely on its TEs more this season. WR is one of the weakest positions on the roster for the Gators, and TEs Jordan Reed is going to have to step up big. He has all the talent in the world, but he is invisible in big games. Along with Reed, Clay Burton Omarius Hines and freshmen Kent Taylor and Colin Thompson will be asked to make some plays, too, to compensate for the lack of big-time talent at WR. [Gator Sports]

After recently expressing interest in reaching out to Penn State players, Mark Richt now says he is not pursuing them. Here is what Richt said in a statement: “Currently, Georgia is not pursuing any of Penn State’s football players. We wish Coach O’Brien and the players the best.” Richt either had a change of heart or the Penn State players showed no interest. [AJC]

Missouri fan day has been announced. Sunday, August 5th, fans will be able to meet and get autographs from coaches and the players. Admission to the event is free, and it begins at 3:45 PM. This is the 10th annual Fan Day. Do you think Mizzou is proud to be in the SEC? You betcha. [Missourian]

Tennessee opens training camp and will spend five days at Milligan College in between Johnson City and Elizabethton. This will allow UT’s players to bond and sharpen focus for the upcoming season. Think ‘Remember the Titans’. It’s a very rare situation for colleges to spend their training camps away from home, but the NFL does it all the time. “I think they’re excited about it,” third-year coach Derek Dooley said. “It’s something they hadn’t done. It’s hard, but it’s fun.” [Times Free Press]

Kevin Sumlin wants a new attitude for the players. After last year, the fans were down on the team. During the bowl game, Sumlin walked around while the Aggies were winning, and several said ‘just wait until the second half’. “I had [a fan] ask me early what’s the attitude of the players,” Sumlin said. “But I asked him, ‘What’s your attitude?’ He said, ‘Coach, it’s been a rough year. I’m just down. It’s been a long season. I’m hurt.’ I said, ‘If you feel like that, how do you think the players feel? You ate turkey legs and drank beer at the games. What about this guy who got hit in the head about a 100 times a game?’” [Aggie Sports]



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