College Football Nation: Rutgers Knows How to Party and Eastern Michigan Sees Gray

Jeff Hostetler FishWrap, FishWrap Archive

We are fewer than four weeks away from kickoff. Honestly, I am going to start grilling just so I can be ready for kickoff. Week 1 will be here before we know it, and we will have some amazing match-ups to look forward to.

Even though no actual football games are going on yet, the football news is just pouring in. You have gray turf, ice parties and the “Power 5” gaining some level of autonomy from the NCAA. What a summer — please, someone, just score a touchdown already!

Eastern Michigan has never been known for being good at football and probably never will. Recently, however, the Eagles decided to try to draw attention to their football team, but not by actually playing football. They have installed gray turf with the hope it will encourage some positive headlines for their football program. Maybe they’re hoping the change of turf will bring a little Boise State magic to their football team, because they could use just about anything after going 10-26 the last three years.

With how tough his players have it, Rutgers coach Kyle Flood looked to add a little reward after a hard day’s practice. He turned their after-practice ice bath time into a full blown party. Pretty sweet little set up — but I don’t know how I would feel sitting there with a bunch of dudes. It’s nice to see some of the coaches still having fun and not taking it too seriously. It is just a game, after all, even if $millions are on the line.

Speaking of money, Bill Snyder of Kansas State ripped college athletics. He basically told everyone that college sports, especially football, has become all about the “all-mighty dollar!” Love it! The sport that we know and love is changing every day. These changes have occurred mainly due to money, not the best interest of the sport. Snyder said it is sad that a player will now choose a school based on its facilities or what a building looks like instead of the education and college experience.

As you all know, Snyder has been around college football since before the forward pass was even invented, so he knows a thing or two. Just one example of how money has changed college football: rivalry games. We longer get Missouri vs Kansas, Texas vs Texas A&M, or Colorado vs Nebraska. It’s just sad to see how you can throw a few dollars in front of a school’s face and it throws out all its traditions and everything it holds dear to its athletics programs.

As if the NCAA didn’t already have enough on its plate, it voted Thursday to grant the “Power 5” conferences power to set up their own rules. It is a decent read, but really I view it as a way for the haves to officially grind the have nots into the dirt and take all the money and power. We understand there is a big difference between a program like Oregon compared to, say, a San Jose State — but ugh — this is going to get complicated and messy. Let’s just play the game and move on.

Oregon fans — want to join in hating on the NCAA? Well, here is another reason to get on board with the push for the NCAA to change its rules and policies. Oregon gave a recruit some toiletries since he forgot his at home. I’ve got to say, if I was being recruited by a school and it gave me shaving cream and a razor — done deal. I would be committed. Oh my Gosh, the NCAA needs to change it up. No wonder they are so hated right now. It is silly stuff such as this that needs to be thrown out or revised.

With kickoff less than a month away, we will soon get into some predictions for Week 1, along with all the news from off the field. I will also put out my thoughts on who will make the Playoff and why — and, believe it or not, as much of an SEC homer I am, I don’t see the SEC winning it all this coming season. You will just have to wait until later to find out who I am predicting will win it all.


1. Kentucky going after B1G

2. Nebraska fan still struggling

3. College football mailbag

4. Power 5 threats

5. Auburn audible

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