Florida State and 8 Programs Ticked off over Spring Practice
Spring football is here, and with it, always the hope for great college football in the fall.
Well, for most teams anyway.
Some teams, however, weren't happy with the way spring practice went. These are the teams and coaches who wanted more from their spring sessions than they got.
Who are they? Read on.
Boston College Eagles
Frank Spaziani is squarely on the hot seat, and nothing about spring seems to have made that better.
The Gazette put together this report about attendance at spring games, and Boston College finished last in the ACC with a mere 200 people showing up.
That's just sad. Even UTEP reported having 400 fans at a scrimmage.
That obviously says that the fans are not excited about what's going on at BC. Spaziani is now officially out of goodwill and must win to survive.
Sarah Glenn/Getty Images
This is the first season that Riley Nelson got the lion's share of the snaps, as Jake Heaps decided to transfer to Kansas this past December.
But Nelson and the Cougars got a bit frustrated as several key players, mostly on the offensive side of the ball, went down with injury.
Eight of those that had to sit out the spring were offensive linemen, limiting how much the Cougars really could practice on offense. And Nelson had to voice some of those frustrations:
"[Seven-on-7 drills are] good — but man, we aren’t going to go to South Bend or Boise, or up to Salt Lake, and play 7-on-7. We are 11-on-11, full pads, full go, so we got to start getting more quality reps."
As many of these players get healthy, fall should be better for Bronco Mendenhall and Co.
Wesley Hitt/Getty Images
Arkansas was supposed to be one of the hottest teams in the SEC West coming into the spring. After all, Tyler Wilson is holding his own and Knile Davis is back after missing the entire 2011 season with a torn ACL.
Then, Bobby Petrino rode into ruin on a motorcycle with his mistress. Now, Arkansas doesn't have a head coach.
This was virtually the worst-case scenario for a team hoping to upstage LSU and Alabama in the always stacked SEC in the fall. And since the best coaches are probably going to be tied up until the end of the season, Arkansas is probably going to have to go with an interim until year's end.
Eric Francis/Getty Images
It's not Bo Pelini's or Nebraska's fault that the Cornhuskers had to cancel their spring game due to bad weather. However, this does mean that Nebraska won't have a spring game for the first time since 1950.
And fans who bought tickets to see the Red-White Game won't be getting their money back. Instead, they'll get a discount for any home baseball or softball game.
Nobody's happy about having to cancel the spring game. Nebraska is losing an estimated $400,000 from lost concessions and memorabilia sales, according to AD Tom Osborne. And the players just wanted to play.
"It stinks we don't get to play," running back Rex Burkhead said. "Thanks to all the fans for coming out anyway. Sorry to disappoint them."
So in this spring game, nobody won.
Christian Petersen/Getty Images
The first Arizona spring game under Rich Rodriguez showed that the transition to RichRod's offense isn't going to be an easy one.
The Wildcats offense put the ball on the carpet five times and lost three of those fumbles. The defense didn't exactly play lights-out football either.
To make matters worse, junior safety Adam Hall injured his ACL for the second time in as many springs.
If spring is any indication, Arizona fans shouldn't expect an instant turnaround. Still, I wouldn't be overly worried. These things take time.
However, quarterback Matt Scott's play was encouraging, so that's certainly a positive.
Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images
When you feel like your team is not getting enough attention, throwing the media out of your spring practices just doesn't seem like the way to get the right kind of attention.
Not sure why Cardinals head coach Charlie Strong thought this was a good idea.
Strong acted like a child not getting enough attention from his mommy when a sibling does something great. In this case, Louisville's spring practice didn't get the attention Strong thought the program deserved, as the basketball team was making an improbable run to the Final Four during March Madness.
When confronted by the media after this decision, Strong had this to say, via ESPN:
"We are a BCS program," Strong said. "We are an elite program, and I am passionate about this program, and that's what I want to see in this community."
Props to Strong about being passionate about his program, but this was a silly distraction from the development of his team.
Notre Dame Fighting Irish
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images
Notre Dame fans hoping that the Fighting Irish would resolve their QB problems in the spring were sadly disappointed.
So, apparently, was head coach Brian Kelly.
The Notre Dame offense turned over the ball six times during the Blue-Gold Game. And even though the Irish have talent at quarterback and running back, consistency is still an issue.
Young QB Everett Golson and RB George Atkinson III both had some terrific plays. And then there was bobbled pitch that Atkinson put on the carpet for a turnover.
"Both of those guys are exciting, electric players," Kelly cautioned about Atkinson and Golson, "but they are a heart attack for me."
And Kelly knows a thing or two about heart attacks. After all, he looked like he had one against South Florida last season.
However, the silver lining here is that the Irish defense looks incredible. But we'll see if the offense can resolve their ball-handling issues.
Florida State Seminoles
Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images
Most coaches at least try to spin things in a positive way when their teams struggle.
"I thought we played very poorly on both sides," FSU head coach Jimbo Fisher said.
"I thought the first scrimmage was better than this one. On offense -- no consistency; had some not smart turnovers at times. On defense -- gave up a bunch of big plays, terrible on third down. At times both sides just dominated the other side."
And Fisher wasn't done. Apparently Florida State has gotten worse between their first and second scrimmages.
Jimbo Fisher, for one, can't wait for spring to be over.