Over at Iowa State, athletic director Jamie Pollard made a bold move today by naming Texas defensive coordinator Gene Chizik to replace Dan McCarney. Bold, because Chizik was one of the hottest names in coaching circles. Bold because nobody gave Pollard a chance to sign Chizik. Bold because even after Pollard announced they had found their man, he faked out Scout.com, who went on to report that Central Michigan's Brian Kelly was going to be the head coach.
Imagine that...an internet recruiting site getting their facts wrong. Go figure.
But back to Pollard. Combine this hire with the hiring of Greg McDermott and the $135 million fund raising campaign underway at Iowa State, and you get the impression of an athletic director making things happen. Iowa State is certainly upping the ante and getting into the game in the Big XII.
Meanwhile, the fallout from the Belckis and Buckhead saga of graft and excess claimed UNO athletic director David Herbster today. I have mixed feelings on this one; I can't hold Herbster responsible for all of UNO's problems. Nearly all of them predated Herbster's arrival on campus and many were the result of mismanagement by the now ousted UNO administration. Herbster had some good ideas, but some were so poorly implemented, they ended up backfiring. But Herbster in the end needs to bear some responsibility for not questioning the excesses of his supervisors and not keeping boosters more aware of the situation at UNO. In any event, this change is probably for the best. This allows UNO athletics to start with a clean slate.
The bowl negotiations are hot and heavy after Texas A&M's upset of Tejas last Friday. Apparantly, A&M athletic director Bill Byrne is working hard to get the Aggies into the Holiday Bowl. However, now it seems Texas is now the choice for the Cotton Bowl, which now begs the question of where would the Huskers play if they don't win against Oklahoma on Saturday. Some rumors have Nebraska dropping to the Alamo Bowl to play Iowa. Why do I have this image of Barry Switzer at work, delivering a bag of tacos to Steve Pederson's office?