College Football 2011: The 5 Most Shocking Offseason Storylines

Erik UnderwoodCorrespondent IIIAugust 25, 2011

College Football 2011: The 5 Most Shocking Offseason Storylines

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    The 2011 offseason could go down as the most news-worthy in college football history. 

    Between the scandals at Ohio State and Miami, and some of the poor decisions made by individuals at other schools, the headlines have been filled with shocking stories over the last few months.

    After sifting through the numerous headlines, here are five of the most shocking we've seen so far.

Bill Stewart Tries to Smear Dana Holgorsen

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    Dana Holgorsen was brought in to West Virginia as the coach-in-waiting for next season. 

    According to several sources inside the West Virginia football program, current coach at the time Bill Stewart did not get along with his future replacement.

    The scandal was uncovered when a West Virginia newspaper reported that Holgorsen had been kicked out of six different establishments, all for alcohol-related behavior. 

    When West Virginia investigated where the stories came from, they found Stewart at the root of it.

    Stewart had asked a former beat-writer for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette to dig up stories on Holgorsen in an attempt to smear his reputation.

    When Athletic Director Oliver Luck uncovered what really happened, Bill Stewart was bought out and fired from West Virginia.  He stated that the reports were "inaccurate."

    Holgorsen will make 1.4 million dollars as the West Virginia head coach this year.

Hurricane Shapiro Hits "The U"

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    Yahoo! Sports dropped a bombshell after interviewing former Miami Hurricane booster Nevin Shapiro from his prison cell after being convicted of running a 930 million dollar Ponzi scheme.

    Shapiro claimed that he provided illegal benefits such as cash, cars, jewelry, and prostitutes to 72 Miami Hurricane football players from 2002-2008.

    If the allegations are found to be true, Miami would be in gross violation of NCAA rules. 

    This would also be the second time they would be charged for a similar violation, making them a repeat offender. 

    Repeat offenders could face the ultimate punishment, the "Death Penalty."

    This would mean the Miami Hurricane football program would cease to exist for the next year.  The only other team to be hit with this was SMU in 1987, and it took them nearly two decades to show some signs of recovery.

    Supporters of the Hurricane program are biting their nails while waiting to hear what the NCAA uncovers in their investigation, and are hoping to have football every season as planned.

OSU Players Trade Memorabilia for Cash; Tressell Resigns

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    In what would be considered the second biggest scandal of the offseason, several Ohio State football players were alleged to have traded equipment and memorabilia to a local tattoo shop owner in exchange for tattoos. 

    Drugs, cash, and alcohol were also reported to have been involved in some deals.

    The figurehead at the front of the "Tat Five" scandal was quarterback Terrelle Pryor, who chose to leave the Buckeyes and enter the NFL Supplemental Draft. 

    He was chosen in the third round by the Oakland Raiders, but will have to sit the first five games of the season in accordance with the punishment that he would be serving if he remained at OSU.

    Jim Tressell was made aware of what the players were doing, but chose not to report it to the NCAA.  This is a big no-no with the NCAA and Tressell was forced into resignation because of it.

    The Buckeyes are still waiting for the NCAA to decide on what their fate will be, but dodged a major bullet when it was stated that they were not being charged with the "Failure to Monitor" charge that is so deadly to most schools who are investigated.

LSU Players Involved in Baton Rouge Bar Brawl

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    What is an LSU Tiger to do after the last session of two-a-days?  Go to the bar and celebrate of course.

    However the celebration turned into a legal headache when four LSU players were involved in a bar fight that left one man with three cracked vertebrae. 

    He required hospitalization and may be the reason that somebody sees the inside of a jail cell for a while.

    The police are likely pursuing felony second-degree battery charges, a crime that carries lengthy jail time for those convicted.

    The most note-worthy of the players was senior quarterback Jordan Jefferson, who was expected to be a starter and leader for the Tigers this season. 

    Les Miles has not commented on who will start since the incident, but held Jefferson out of practice for a day before re-inserting him with the first team offense.

    The players who were there have talked to the police, who searched Jefferson's apartment and confiscated several brown bags of evidence. 

    They also collected a DNA sample from the senior quarterback to investigate whether or not he was involved in the fight.

    The poor decisions made by Jefferson and his teammates could cost LSU as they open their season with a very tough game against Oregon.

Butch Davis Canned by Tar Heels

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    Butch Davis found himself amidst the center of yet another NCAA investigation this year at North Carolina. 

    The Tar Heels were once again being looked into for everything from improper benefits to academic fraud.

    The University of North Carolina had stated that Davis would remain the head coach, even praised him for the job he did last year after losing several players to suspension following the first news of scandal.

    But the second wave of allegations were the straw that broke the camel's back. 

    The University stated that the damage done to their reputation was just too much, and that coach Butch Davis would be relieved of his duties in July.

    This came as quite a surprise following the vote of confidence given to Davis after last year. 

    Now, with no long-term head coach and more investigations looming, the Tar Heels find themselves behind the 8-ball and wondering what their future will hold.