News, Notes & Quotes - Oct. 5

Posted by: Chris Vannini on Wednesday October 05, 2016

- Paul Johnson didn’t hide his thoughts on Georgia Tech’s facilities this week.

Comparing the success of Clemson compared to GT, Johnson pointed to administrative commitment.

“Here’s what has to happen, it’s what I tell our team about playing: commitment has to meet expectations,” he said. “You can’t have expectations with no commitment. It won’t work, no matter what you do. So, if you say you want to be on this level, then you have to be committed to be on that level and you have to do what those people are doing. It’s as simple as that.”

He added, “You guys look, you don’t have to ask me. Do you think we have the same things Clemson does? How can the expectation be to beat them?"

Johnson now has a new athletic director in Todd Stansbury. I’ll assume the topic of facilities will be a big discussion. 

- Bob Stoops doesn’t expect many changes this Saturday with Charlie Strong taking over the Texas defense.

A year ago, Texas held OU to 1.8 yards per rush in the upset win. Can Strong do it again?

“I don’t think you can have a whole new defense in three, four days,” Stoops said on SiriusXM College Sports Nation. “How he calls may be different, obviously, but you’re going to work on the big body of their defense and be prepared for that. Then you react to it on the field.”

- Coming off a 24-13 loss to Texas A&M, Will Muschamp’s message to his South Carolina team is that hard work doesn’t always pay off, but you have to keep the belief.

“What I told them that life isn’t fair. Sometimes you can work really, really hard, and you’re not guaranteed of anything,” Muschamp said this week. “So you can’t get frustrated. You can’t let the negativity start to seep into your body and your brain. You’ve got to block it out and understand that we’ve just got to continue to work and continue to buy in and continue to believe in the things that they’re doing as players on offense, defense, and special teams and have that belief because right now it’s going to be negative.

“It’s easy to kick the guy on the curb, and that’s part of it. But right now we’ve got to continue to have the belief in what we’re doing, and we do. I believe in this group.”

The 2-3 Gamecocks host Georgia this Saturday.

- Notre Dame has just 3 sacks this season, but Brian Kelly is looking more to QB hurries when assessing what needs to improve in the pass rush.

“I want to be careful that we don't get too caught up in the fact that we're not getting sacks,” Kelly said. “I want quarterback hurries and I want pressures. So that needs to be the focus. The vocabulary to me in that defensive room is pressures and hurries. If we can do that and play the kind of coverage that I want, I'm going to be happy with the kind of pass rush that we get.”

- Mark Dantonio isn’t going all-in on young players to build for the future, as some fans have called for — especially at QB. This season isn’t even half over.

“We're not cashing out this year yet. We're a 2-2 football team,” he said. “… In line of everybody's getting reps in practice and those types of things, we'll make the best decisions for the team going forward as to who our quarterback is, and right now, it's Tyler O'Connor.

“I think that the guy has leadership ability. I think he shows toughness on the field. I think he made plays. If we win the football game, if the head coach decides to go for two or we win the football game in overtime, he's the hero of the game. Took him down the field and scored. But because that didn't happen, you know, he's thrown under the bus a little bit.”

- ESPN posted a fascinating oral history of Bill Belichick’s coaching career. These two quotes from Phil Savage stuck out.

--"My film breakdowns weren't what (Belichick) wanted, so he says, 'Let's just sit down and go through a few plays together.' We're getting ready for Tampa, he throws the first play up on the screen and starts going, from the inside out, over every single tiny detail. 'See this split of the linemen? That's 2 feet. That's 3 feet. That one's 2 feet between the center and the guard. Write that down. OK, now look at the splits of the wide receivers. The Z is inside the numbers. The X is outside. OK, the quarterback. Look! Right there! He looks to the left, to the right, to the left, then to the middle and then he hikes the ball. You gotta monitor that because it could help our defensive linemen get a jump on the snap.'"

--"Saban might be the greatest college coach ever, and I can honestly say in the last eight years at Alabama I have never once seen him tired. But in Cleveland, under Bill, he'd go slump down against a wall and stutter, 'I gotta get out of here, I can't function anymore.' Bill could outwork all of us."

- What does Oregon have left to play for at 2-3? Mark Helfrich was asked at his press conference.

“It absolutely has to become personal,” he said. “We talk about personal goals and why the guys do what they do. It’s very difficult to do what they do on a daily basis. You need that motivation, whatever, March 12 to have a great day on March 12 to know it’ll affect you in the season. Guys are learning the hard way, the slap-you-in-face way. It has to be a personal thing, absolutely.”

- Here’s a behind-the-scenes look at Michigan State’s loss to Indiana in the latest episode of Spartan Football All-Access.

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