News, Notes & Quotes - July 12

Posted by: Chris Vannini on Wednesday July 12, 2017

- With the new emphasis to flag any coach who goes onto the field to argue a call, the sideline get-back coach will be huge.

“Certainly all us coaches have gotten our assignments. Our coaches are going to hang on to us and make sure we don't go across that line,” Kirby Smart said. “I'm obviously concerned about it at a critical time, but it is the rule, and we follow the rules. I think, as head coaches, we've got to set a good example, and I think that's what the rules are in place for.

“It would be a good job, challenging job to manage that, especially at critical times in the game. You'd hate to see a game decided by something like that. But it's the rule. We've been briefed on it, and we all got to adhere to it.”

- If you’re going to ask Jim McElwain the umpteenth question about the quarterback battle, make sure it wasn’t just asked.

Late in a media scrum, McElwain answered a question about QB’s, and that was followed up by a generic question about naming a starter there. The reporter clearly wasn’t listening, and McElwain wasn’t interested in answering again.

“Did I hear that right?” he said. “Well thank you for that. That’s awesome. What did you hear? OK. That’s good. We’ll get there.”

- Camping is so important for Dan Mullen when recruiting a QB, but not necessarily because of the physical side of things.

“You got to be able to sit down and talk to them,” he said. “All of them you try to get to camp if you can within a camp where you actually get to coach them and work with them one on one. The biggest one to me is you take things that you can coach and you take things that are harder to coach, and you really want to look for guys that have the traits that are hard to coach.

“Whether it's the leadership, the mental, physical toughness, intelligence in processing information and decision making, those are some things that are sometimes harder to coach. You can coach someone to throw. Now, there's all different levels of that, but you want to look at the things that are harder to coach. And if they have certain part of those skill sets, then they have the potential for the things that are coachable.

“… I know that might sound coach cliché, but one of the things when NFL teams call and ask about Dak Prescott is he won. He took Haughton High School to levels they had not been to. He took Mississippi State to be the number one team in the country. People are surprised he took the Dallas Cowboys to the playoff. He's a winner.”

- Asked his most intense recruiting story, Ed Orgeron pointed to the night before Signing Day 2012 at USC.

“Tuesday night before Signing Day, Leonard Williams was committed to Florida,” Orgeron said on WJOX.” We got the call in Los Angeles at about 11 o’clock that the letter was going to Florida. Six o’clock that morning, Leonard was a USC Trojan. A lot of Slim Jims and Red Bulls. We stayed up all night. We did it across the country on the phone, all night long.

“That night, there was a lot of Red Bulls and Slim Jims, and it was worth it. Leonard turned out to be a great player, one of the best recruiting stories I can remember.”

- Training camps don’t open for a few weeks, but USC held a player-led practice on Tuesday.

Chris Vannini is in his fifth year with and serves as its managing editor. He has previously written for the Detroit Free Press, The Oakland Press, The State News,, 247Sports and SB Nation.  A graduate of Michigan State University, Chris now lives in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.  Be sure to follow @coachingsearch and send emails to