College Football Nation: NCAA on Trial and Auburn’s Paint Job

Jeff Hostetler FishWrap, FishWrap Archive


As this off season drags on, we really have only the Conference Media days to keep us busy along with the NCAA going to court against everyone. The NCAA will be on trial for five different cases in the upcoming months. All cases will change the college football world dramatically, if won.

With all this going on, the SEC commissioner, Mike Slive, decided to go proactive. He knows change must take place before these lawsuits not only drag down the NCAA but also drag down the schools from the power conferences. His plan calls for “Division IV” … basically all the BCS schools call the shots for what is best for their programs and stay with NCAA, but break away from the NCAA in one particular area — money.

Mr. Slive would like for schools to have more say when it comes scholarships, healthcare, and providing for the student athlete. I am all on-board for this plan but then the gap of haves and have-nots would grow out of control. But like they said in the article, will a New Mexico football ever be on the level of an Ohio State or Alabama?

While the off-season drags on, there will be some schools who will have fun with this at the expense of their rivals. Auburn decided to paint on their field the path taken by Chris Davis in the Iron Bowl. Even if Alabama beats Auburn for the next 10 straight years,  this play will haunt them for a very long time.

I used to always kid about the Big East being the joke of all conferences. Well, now I will shift that conference to the American Athletic Conference. They just realigned their divisions and will have Navy playing in the West Division. Does that make any sense at all? Well, they were the same people who were going to invite Boise State and San Diego State to be in the Big East Conference. What a joke! They will not let their ship sink.

If I was Cincinnati I would be begging the BIG 12 to take my school. Cincinnati has decent football and basketball. They are just as close as West Virginia and would probably take a “pay cut” to join the BIG 12, since they were passed over by the other conferences.  The American Athletic Conference is becoming a glorified “Conference USA.”

With Johnny Manziel leaving Texas A&M, you might think they would drop off and become second fiddle again in the state of Texas.  Wrong!  They have the stadium expansion, 3 top-10 NFL Draft picks to brag about, a top recruiting class, and more importantly they could have just landed their ‘Next’ Johnny Manziel by signing Kyle Murray. The Aggies beat out Oregon and Auburn for this kid. The momentum just keeps rolling in College Station. Charlie Strong will have a much harder time bringing Texas ‘back’ if Kevin Sumlin keeps the Aggies going strong like this. For now enjoy some highlights of Texas A&M’s future:

Rich Rodriguez has struck oil at Arizona … literally.  A powerful Arizona booster has sweetened the pot for Rich Rod to stay at Arizona and build them into a powerhouse! The school is working out the details of the contract details but one word describes it all — money!  He will get $1 million for winning a national championship at Arizona according to some of the contract details.

If I am Oregon’s Mark Helfrich or Oklahoma State’s Mike Gundy and I see this, I get to my agent and tell them to get to work. With school’s wanting the best coach leading their program, Arizona is looking for a way to keep their coaches and keep their teams competitive. It should be interesting to see what Nick Saban’s agent comes up with after seeing this. He probably will get a deal to be Governor of Alabama if he wins another national title.

Despite the season still being less than 89 days away, the NCAA and coaches are making it interesting. As more details emerge, we will have to keep you posted on the NCAA vs everyone trials. It will be interesting to see if Alabama “retaliates” for Auburn’s paint job.

Last but not least, players will be screaming to get paid after seeing Rich Rod and his deal. The players are the ones that make the coaches contracts relevant and are responsible for bringing in the money and it is going to get ugly with all of that. Enjoy the rest of the off-season and I am sure the Media Days will bring us some fun stuff to talk about. Putting Les Miles in front of a microphone always creates instant highlights.


1. Auburn wins 2004 national title

2. $40 million dollar settlement

3. Oklahoma State robbery

4. Notre Dame player back

5. New recruiting rules?

New 2024 FishDuck Publishing Schedule….

During the off-season the publishing schedule will consist of articles on Mondays and Tuesdays. Do keep checking as new articles could be published during the week when a writer has something to say.

In mid-August of 2024, we will go back to the seven-days-a-week of articles during the football season as we did in the football season of 2023.

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