Five-Step Drop: June Jones Reportedly Denies Maryland Overtures
1. At least one big name has removed himself from the running to become Maryland's next coach -- and he turned down a huge pile of money to do so. SMU coach June Jones turned down an incentive-laden offer that could have paid him $3.5 million per year, according to Kate Hairopoulos of the Dallas Morning News. Other names linked to the job include Auburn offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn, though Gene Chizik says he has not spoken to anyone from Maryland, and Mike Leach, who will be a candidate for every coaching job on the planet until he actually gets hired.
2. Another Paterno has weighed in on rumors of a regime change at Penn State. This time it's Joe Paterno himself, who says he's not quitting. "To me, I'm a bit different than Urban (Meyer)," he said. "I've got people calling up saying: 'When the hell are you getting out?'" Paterno has always been known for his sense of humor. It's good to see he's still able to keep it in the midst of this situation. As for when he actually will retire, Paterno said, "I don't know when I'll get out. I honestly don't know."
3. When Paterno does retire, whether that's this week, next year or shortly after his 103rd birthday, Penn State will likely look for someone with ties to Penn State to replace him. Add one name to the list of potential successors: Mississippi State's Dan Mullen, a native Pennsylvanian whose father attended PSU and, according to Mullen, still has blue and white sheets on his bed. Mullen didn't say anything about wanting the Penn State job, but said, "It was all Penn State at my house growing up." That will be enough to move him up Nittany Lions fans' wish lists.
4. Georgia and Ohio State have signed something called a "memorandum of understanding" to play a home-and-home football series. Ohio State has always scheduled tough non-conference opponents, while Georgia is pretty much the only SEC school other than Vanderbilt that isn't too chicken to play a non-conference game outside the conference's footprint. So it isn't totally surprising that these two schools have agreed to tee it up. Just don't start booking those hotel rooms in Athens and/or Columbus yet. The games won't be played until 2020 and 2021.
5. Tuesday night's Insight Bowl between Iowa and Missouri was the first matchup between the two schools in a hundred years. That's a long time for two major programs to go without playing each other, and it's all the more curious since the two campuses are about 200 miles apart. Why have two schools so physically close to each other gone so long without meeting on the football field? David Briggs of the Columbia Tribune, Missouri's hometown paper, takes a look at several ugly racial incidents from the distant past which kept the schools from facing each other. It also helps to know that Iowa and Missouri once went to war with each other. Maybe we should just be grateful both teams agreed to show up for the bowl game.