Keith Jackson remembered by several people. At SBN:
That training meant calling everything ABC threw at him, but college football was different. One of Jackson’s gifts that made him so, so good at college football games was to make the viewer feel at home wherever the game might be. Ann Arbor became the Big House, Nebraska became the friendliest town in the world, and even beneath “the broad shoulders of the San Gabriel Mountains” you could feel at home, because ... well Keith did, didn’t he? Nowhere wasn’t home on a Saturday if Keith was calling it, because he had a map with a single line connecting everything.
This was all part of a whole to him. The things with names had definite pronunciations only Keith could nail; the things without names would be given them in time. The language of this sport — right down to the love for the great, the ugly, the undersized, the local, and the brutal — is his.
"That big smiling face, and just the thrill and the love he had for doing college football," Bob Griese told SportsCenter when asked what he'd remember about Jackson, his longtime broadcast partner whom he started working with in 1985.
"He did it for a long, long time. ... He never intruded on the game. It was always about the kids on the field. Never, never shining the light on himself. And that was one of the things that I most admired about him."
By Andy Staples:
It was probably on some lazy Saturday afternoon or evening in 1990 when the sound burned itself into my memory. I was in seventh grade, and a Notre Dame linebacker with a previously checkered career was in the midst of an All-America season. He must have been playing on the road, because if he’d been in South Bend, Brent Musburger would have been the one saying his name. Instead, Keith Jackson was calling the game, and when that linebacker made a tackle, Jackson said…
And there it was.
From that point forward, the quintessence of college football in my mind was Keith Jackson saying the name Michael Stonebreaker as a drumline pounds out a beat between plays. I can’t think of the sport without hearing those two words uttered by that voice. I cover college football for a living, so I think about college football a lot. Consequently, my brain frequently serves up the memory of Keith Jackson identifying a 225-pound middle linebacker from Louisiana playing for a Catholic university in Indiana.
"I can't get them any more open than that." You may have had some similar frustrations midway through the Maryland game:
“I can’t get em more open than those 2 shots.”
— FOX College Hoops (@CBBonFOX) January 16, 2018
Bi-weekly David DeJulius hamblasting video. This one features nine(!) threes in a 49-point performance against Chicago Orr:
Sounds like fun. Next year's schedule is kind of a doozy:
From Michigan’s gauntlet to Oregon’s cakewalk, my 2018 Strength of Schedule Rankings: pic.twitter.com/CoAlFYGrMD
— Matt Smith (@MattSmithCFB) January 16, 2018
@ ND, @ OSU, @ MSU plus crossover games against a couple ten win teams in Wisconsin and Northwestern will do that.
Priority one: don't pay anyone. This would be an insane way to defuse the increasing media heat on the NCAA for restricting player mobility:
I spoke w/ an NCAA official this week who was “95% certain” transfers will soon be allowed to play immediately in basketball & football. Could be a one-time freebie, plus grad transfer option. So in theory, a student-athlete could play for three different schools w/o sitting out.
— Matt Schick (@ESPN_Schick) January 17, 2018
The grad transfer rule already sucks out loud for lower-level schools. Creating open season on every all-conference football and basketball player turns the MAC into a collection of JUCOs, essentially. It's far worse for competitive balance than paying kids would be, because you get to swoop in on anyone you missed and yoink them. You're also inviting kids to leave whatever degree program they're in for sports, damaging your hoary claims to academic integrity.
But it would eliminate a set of arguments against amateurism, so full speed ahead. Because keeping the money is all they care about.
Frank Ragnow on Ben Herbert. Strong, detailed praise for Michigan's new S&C guy:
"He's probably one of the most detail-oriented people I've ever met," Ragnow said. He then paused. "Actually, he is the most detail-oriented person I've ever been around. The first thing he's going to do with his players is a thorough individual evaluation of them. He'll learn their tendencies, strengths and weaknesses and try to get a feel for how their body reacts to different movements and different processes. Nutrition-wise, I'm guessing the Michigan players are going to learn a lot. Coach Herb is always finding new ways to gain an edge on the nutrition side of things and it was probably the one part of how he did things that I learned and took the most out of."
In addition to being good at S&C stuff, Ragnow "wouldn't let" Steve Lorenz hang up until he'd expressed what an excellent dude he was as well.
Exit various Irish. In addition to a few NFL departures, Brian Kelly booted four dudes. Three are offensive skill guys and will be relevant for Michigan's upcoming series against the Irish:
Stepherson was arguably Notre Dame’s most explosive receiver last season, finishing with 19 catches for 359 yards and five touchdowns. However, he was held out of the season’s first four games for a suspension that Notre Dame never publicly acknowledged.
The departures of McIntosh and Holmes come after a single public rules violation and seriously dent Notre Dame’s running back depth chart. With Josh Adams off to the NFL Draft, the Irish will likely open spring ball with just three scholarship running backs in Dexter Williams, Tony Jones Jr. and early enrollee Jahmir Smith.
The fourth is a DL who wasn't going to be in the rotation anyway.
Etc.: Andrew Ebbett and Chad Kolarik make the Canadian and American Olympic hockey teams, respectively. Francis Atuahene set to go high in the MLS Superdraft. Trey Burke reunited with THJ. Minnesota reporter suggests that there should be a Red Berenson trophy. I'm in.