Big Ten links: Satellite camp ban still causing some grief

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Big Ten links: Satellite camp ban still causing some grief

So, SEC mouthpiece Paul Finebaum says Jim Harbaugh has “hijacked”— his word, not mine — college football with a run of stunts that included a national satellite camps tour last summer and a week of spring practice at Florida high school power IMG Academy.

“I think he has been an entertaining entrant to college football since he arrived in Michigan a year and a half ago. Entertaining,” said Finebaum. “That was then. I find him growingly and increasingly annoying now.”

I thought Harbaugh was just doing his job. He is supposed to win football games, not make friends.

Washington State coach Mike Leach says petty jealousy of Harbaugh is what led to the banning of satellite camps. And, the always wise and sage Leach is correct.

“It sounds to me a whole bunch of people need to worry about what they’re doing instead of what Jim Harbaugh is doing,” Leach told Sirius XM College Sports. “They need to coach their team and let Jim Harbaugh coach his. If Jim Harbaugh wants to do satellite camps, great. If he wants to do satellite camps wherever he wants to do them, great.”

Stanford’s David Shaw concurs with Leach in the notion that Harbaugh is why these camps were killed.

“Like anything like that, it was big and Jim wanted it to be big and that’s fine,” Shaw said Tuesday on “The Paul Finebaum Show“. “But, yes, I do believe it led to the rule change.”

It’s amazing the swiftness with which this rule was passed. It’s absurd, really.

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Count Nebraska safety Nate Gerry among those who doesn’t like the unlimited texting rule.

“I wouldn’t have liked it,” the Husker senior safety told the Lincoln Journal Star. “I think a lot of these kids are kind of getting overwhelmed with the whole social media thing as it is. I think a lot of kids are worrying about too much when they just need to worry about doing their own job, working hard and getting bigger, faster and stronger.

“I think it’s putting too much on them at a young age.”

The proposal would go into effect April 28, pending approval by the Board of Directors. The texting rule change brings football in line with other sports like men’s basketball, which has had deregulated texting since 2012.

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Finally, the NCAA ruled on the appeal of Drew Ott returning for the 2016 season after having last year truncated by injury. And, the verdict wasn’t good for the Iowa DE.

The decision comes more than four months after Ott first told reporters he had begun paperwork to request a medical hardship after October surgeries to repair a torn ACL in his right knee and ligament damage in his left elbow. Not having Ott will be a blow to the Iowa defense, which needs playmakers off the edge.

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Is Michigan State’s Malik McDowell the best defensive lineman in nation? I don’t know. But he wants to show that he is.

“I think I’m the best D-lineman in the country, I can’t lie,” McDowell said. “So if you want it and you ask for it, you’ve got to be willing to take on the pressure.”
Gotta like a guy with high standards.

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Mikey Dudek will miss another season at Illinois with a knee injury. But the wideout could return in 2016. Let’s all hope he can get back on the field.

“I’m not sure he’s out for the season,” Illinois OC Garrick McGee said earlier this week. “I know that he’s a really hard worker. I know that he has a great attitude and great parents.

“Nowadays, guys are coming back. I’ve had a couple guys who have had this same type of leg injury in spring ball and by the time you get to conference games, they’re back. I’ve had that happen before. I’m not completely ruling him out for the season.”

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The Ohio State passing game must improve. And Urban Meyer and OC Tim Beck are working on it.

The entire offensive staff must do more in 2016 than it did a year ago when the Buckeyes finished 41st in the country with 434.1 yards per game (11th rushing with 245.2 yards per game, 110th passing at just 188.8 yards per game).

“He took over for a very valuable guy and I just expect more out of him and our offensive staff in general,” Meyer said of Beck. “I think we have to do a better job than we did a year ago.
“I see it happening this spring.”

OSU will have to do it with a rebuilt offense, as the only star back is QB J.T. Barrett. Who will be the running back? Star wideout? And the line is being rebuilt.

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Tom Dienhart, BTN.com Senior Writer

About Tom Dienhart: BTN.com senior writer Tom Dienhart is a veteran sports journalist who covers Big Ten football and men's basketball for BTN.com and BTN TV. Find him on Twitter and Facebook, and send him questions to his weekly mailbag.

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