We’re at an odd point of the offseason where spring practices are over, but training over the summer hasn’t really begun. The athletes themselves don’t stop working out, but none of them are standing out in practice or making headlines with the team. That being said, there’s still plenty to analyze in the vast world of college football.
College Football News
**** Summer arrest season is upon us. And how. Over the weekend, UTEP QB Kai Locksley was arrested on suspicion of a myriad of misdeeds, including DWI, marijuana possession, terroristic threat and unlawful carrying of a weapon. The Miners quickly moved to suspend the redshirt junior. On Monday, a little light was shed on Locksley’s misadventure of a Friday night. Apparently, according to the complaint affidavit in the case, he threatened to shoot a group of people before getting into his car. When he was pulled over, Locksley admitted to having a weapon at his side.
We are almost certainly going to see a few more arrests this summer, but Locksley has set the bar pretty high for future would-be troublemakers.
**** While we’re on the topic of uncomfortable offseasons, let’s talk about Maurice Washington! The Nebraska sophomore was set to have a plea hearing for his “revenge porn” case on Wednesday. That has been pushed back to July 25, now. Washington was also cited for drug paraphernalia in early June, as if he needed to make life any more complicated for HC Scott Frost.
Frost is also dealing with the marijuana citation of freshman do-everything offensive weapon Wan’Dale Robinson. In and of itself, a few marijuana citations shouldn’t be taken too seriously, but Frost is probably already reeling his boys in. Robinson should be fine. Who knows on Washington. The team has not officially suspended him, but his plea hearing now rubs right up against the start of August camp.
**** Reminding us all that time truly is a flat circle, Bru McCoy is now officially back at USC, as though his spring Texas detour never happened. It is swell that the Trojans did not lose lose the five-star wideout, but they did lose something -- any real possibility that Bru could contribute in the fall. Had he just stayed at USC, we would have spent the offseason talking up his prospects. Instead, not so much. A year off to develop is not a bad thing, though, even for a five-star kid like Bru, who is probably more athlete than would-be impact freshman at this point.
Also officially transferring to the Trojans, four-star freshman CB Chris Steele. While we won’t give any brownie points to USC for gaining, losing, and then regaining-due-to-homesickness Bru McCoy, Steele makes for a legit get that they would not have had in January.
**** Two notable injury/surgery situations for the week. First up, a name you might know in Ohio State’s Tyreke Smith. The defensive end tweeted out on Thursday that he would be undergoing surgery that day. As of yet, there is no further information on the surgery, which might or might cut into August camp or the season beyond. More information on the former four-star’s situation figures to surface in the coming days. For now, we are in a holding pattern. Smith is expected to serve as an active rotational piece this season, assuming that he is not sidelined for an extensive amount of time.
The second notable injury to crop up on our radar is a toughie, with Indiana redshirt freshman WR Jacolby Hewitt tearing his ACL this week. Hewitt had himself a nice spring and the hope was that the former Caldova, Tennessee, prep standout might be ready to strut his stuff this fall.
Count the beginning of June as a sort of Rubicon for torn knee ligaments, as a player like Hewitt will be right on the borderline for coming back in late November and/or bowl action assuming a normal recovery.
**** Texas A&M has become the first SEC program to take the “you can sell alcohol to everybody” rule change from the conference and implement it. The general admission crowd will now be able to buy beer and wine through the third quarter at Kyle Field. There has not been a rush to take advantage of the new rule -- indeed, fuddie duddies Alabama, Georgia and Auburn have all already said that they won’t be making changes in the near future -- but there’s time yet. As if the SEC is not soaked in enough alcohol.
**** Cal struck it big this week, with Aaron Rodgers gifting a seven-million dollar donation to his alma mater to improve the locker room and start the Aaron Rodgers Football Scholarship. That scholarship will be bestowed upon a JUCO player every year. Rodgers, if you’ll remember, began his career in the JUCO ranks. We can dig the thought, here. Now if only Rodgers can donate an offense to the Golden Bears.
**** This was a relatively quiet week in the recruiting universe, but Alabama came out a winner per usual, with four-star LB Quandarrius Robinson the biggest name to fly off the board. At 6-foot-4, 217 pounds, the Birmingham native has a little bit of a spidery build at this juncture but plenty of room to add weight as he matures. Auburn, Kentucky and Nebraska are among the teams that missed out on Rivals No. 28 overall prospect, here.
**** Familiar Bama foe Georgia received a pledge of their own, but not on the defensive side. In their case, it was T Joshua Braun, who committed on Tuesday. At 6-foot-6, 335 pounds, Braun is a mammoth human being with a gravity all his own. He could be paving holes for five-star RB Kendall Milton in 2020 if Georgia plays its cards right. Milton is taking an official visit to Athens this weekend.
**** Shifting to the Big Ten, Wisconsin raked in four-star LB Nick Herbig. You might recognize that name, as Herbig is the baby brother of now-former Stanford G Nate Herbig, who went undrafted in April before landing with the Eagles as an undrafted free agent. Baby brother has shown nice potential in coverage and shows out well when asked to blitz. We’re just going to assume he plays with the requisite grit if Wisconsin is recruiting him.
Air Force RB Cole Fagan is no longer a member of the team. He is being investigated for an undisclosed matter, leaving the Falcons without their leading rusher from a year ago as summer crests over the horizon … Auburn WR Eli Stove (ACL) shed his knee brace following the team’s spring game and should be healthy at the start of August camp … Michigan DL Ron Johnson transferred to Rutgers. He’s a former four-star recruit, but never developed at UM … Speaking of UM transfers, WR Oliver Martin transferred to Iowa … ASU HC Herm Edwards is joining the journalism program and will serve as a guest lecturer on sports media this fall. As much as we would love to see Herm Edwards teach a class, we would prefer to audit Mike Leach’s “Insurgency and Football Strategies” … Tennessee frosh OL Melvin McBride retired due to health concerns … Ole Miss WR D.D. Bowie (a former four-star recruit) transferred to Jackson State … Penn State three-star T Grant Toufant flipped over to Ohio State … FSU saw their receiving corps thin by slight degrees, as four-star freshman Maurice Goolsby has decided to focus on baseball. He was not selected in the MLB amateur draft, it should be noted.