Quick Outs: Missouri’s James Franklin Named QB1

Missouri coach Gary Pinkel said last week that James Franklin did enough to be named QB1 entering August practices. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Missouri QB James Franklin, who got stuck with the “embattled” tag for much of the 2012 season after showing promise in 2011, was named QB1 last Wednesday.

That Franklin even had to compete for the position shows that coach Gary Pinkel doesn’t buy into the theory that injuries alone explain his struggles in Year 1 of the SEC era. He battled redshirt freshman Maty Mauk, who will be QB2 despite a horrendous spring game, and part-time 2012 starter Corbin Berkstresser.

Missouri beat writer Dave Matter, in the same blog post, wrote that Franklin was the most accurate Tigers QB during the spring. This should cause concern to Missouri fans who have watched Franklin throw the ball over the past two seasons. Remember the Florida game last year? Even when Franklin shined in 2011, he often did so as much with his legs than his arm.

This position is a serious concern for the Tigers, who might very well enter the 2013 season at the crossroads. Pinkel has taken the program to levels it hasn’t reached since the 1960s. Yet last year has some wondering if Missouri can compete in the nation’s best league with its current Pinkel-patented spread offense, reliant on bubble screens and a finesse run game.

No matter who starts Game 1 against Murray State, early struggles could certainly mean more than one quarterback takes meaningful snaps in 2013.

 

Hill in Trouble: LSU RB Jeremy Hill got arrested Saturday morning after allegedly punching a man in the head at a Baton Rouge bar. The Associated Press reported a 20-year-old man said he was knocked out in a parking lot fight. A witness captured the fight on a cell phone and captured someone who appears to be Hill punching the victim.

Hill, a rising sophomore, was already serving two years’ probation for an alleged assault on a 14-year-old girl. He pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge.

East Baton Rouge Parish District Attorney Hiller Moore said that assuming Hill is found guilty, “then obviously he’d be in violation of his probation.”

Hill enjoyed a breakout season in 2012, emerging from the pack as LSU’s top option at tailback. He ran with anger and malice – giving the Tigers an explosive, powerful option capable of running over defensive backs and breaking long runs.

Coach Les Miles has not yet commented because he was working the NFL Draft for NFL Network.

 

Hancock Locks in Reservations for Four: BCS executive director Bill Hancock announced last week that the new College Football Playoff – again, a truly amazing original name – will remain a four-team event for at least 12 years.

The news doesn’t really come as a surprise for an organization that has acted for decades like any real playoff system would immediately kill college football. It does, however, squelch the hopes and dreams from those wishing the playoff would expand to eight, 16, 32, however many teams.

The first championship game of the College Football Playoff will be held at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas on Jan. 12, 2015.

Many believe it’s a matter of time before “bracket creep” – the natural expansion of tournaments – takes place, whether executives want it or not. It appears Hancock and his team will at least prevent any additional rounds for the time being.

 

Oklahoma State, Boise State Set Home-and-Home: Blue turf. Loud orange. Lots of waiting.

Oklahoma State and Boise State agreed to a home-and-home series, with a game in Stillwater, Okla. in 2018 and a return trip to Boise, Idaho in 2021.

Florida State scheduled a home-and-home with the chic Broncos. Those games are scheduled for 2019 (Tallahassee) and 2020 (Boise).

Go ahead and put it in your iPhone calendar. Then go ahead and make sure iCloud is turned on, because you will upgrade your phone probably five times minimum before the games are played.

In games to be played before the next president is inaugurated, Florida State and Oklahoma State will play a neutral-field game to start the 2014 season, location TBD.

 

ACCross the Pond?: ACC commissioner John Swofford told CBSSports.com that an idea has been brought up of playing men’s basketball and football games in Europe.

Obviously this would not be the first time a major sport has played regular-season games in Europe. The NFL has an annual game in London and the NBA has held seven pre- and regular-season games in London. Of course, Notre Dame and Navy opened in Dublin, Ireland last year in college football.

This would be different, obviously, because these players are amateurs. There’s also the hypocrisy that university presidents love hiding behind the “we have to remember that ‘student’ comes before ‘athlete’” slogan.

It’s too early to say this plan will actually develop – and that presidents and coaches will sign off – but it seems like an idea worth monitoring.

Topics: Boise State Broncos, Boston College Eagles, Clemson Tigers, Duke Blue Devils, Florida State Seminoles, Georgia Tech Yellowjackets, Louisville Cardinals, Miami Hurricanes, Missouri Tigers, North Carolina State Wolfpack, North Carolina Tarheels, Oklahoma State Cowboys, Pittsburgh Panthers, Syracuse Orange, Virginia Cavaliers, Virginia Tech Hokies, Wake Forest Demon Deacons

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