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Jumbo Package: Thursday 2 April 2015

Next man up...

I don't know why you want to live in Michigan either, Tom.
I don't know why you want to live in Michigan either, Tom.
Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Gregg Marshall will remain at Wichita State, gets new seven-year deal -

Sources told that Marshall's new deal at Wichita State is a seven-year deal worth $3.3 million per year. The 52-year-old led the Shockers to the past four NCAA Tournaments. He has earned a No. 1 seed, made two Sweet 16s and one Final Four.

I don't think anyone, Battle included, thought Wichita State could come up with $23MM over seven years to retain Marshall. I'm guessing that even Marshall was shocked by that offer, which comes fairly close to doubling his salary. Can't fault the man for staying at a place that is familiar and comfortable to him and his family when the compensation is that close- Yahoo reports that Alabama offered "nearly $4 million per year." Good luck to Gregg, and now we move on. BamaBrave4 will have a piece outlining candidates later in the morning. Surely someone worthwhile will take our money.

Social media explodes on frenzied night as Gregg Marshall decides to stay at Wichita State |

Reactions were posted by media members, fans and even Gregg Marshall's family once news broke Wednesday night that Marshall will be staying at Wichita State rather than taking over at Alabama, news Alabama confirmed in a statement from athletic director Bill Battle.

Some amusing reactions in there, particularly from Alabama fan Hunter Johnson.

Alabama practice report: Tide secondary shuffling as Smith remains absent - The Anniston Star: Sports

--With Smith out, there are more opportunities for senior Jabriel Washington and true freshman Ronnie Harrison. Those two were the safeties when the Tide worked on its dime packages. The rest of the group had Tony Brown and Eddie Jackson in the cornerback spots, Maurice Smith at star and Laurence "Hootie" Jones at money. Reuben Foster was the lone linebacker.

Interesting that Hootie is working at the money spot while Harrison and Washington play safety. The thought of Jabriel and a freshman manning those two spots frankly makes me want to grab the Maalox. As always, trust in Saban. Also mentions that Cooper Bateman is still working with the receivers and threw no passes during the media viewing period.

Jonathan Taylor's lawyer hopes Alabama reinstates client after accuser recants |

"I certainly would hope so," Athens attorney Kim Stephens told on Wednesday evening. "My thought, from an outside perspective, in light of all the backlash, that coach Saban and university took as a result of the false accusations that were made and the removal from the team, I think it would be hard for him to take (Taylor) back on the team in spite of the recantation. "But I think fairness would dictate that they'd reconsider and at least talk to the accuser or former accuser in the case, then make a decision based on that."

Mr. Stephens is simply doing his job here, but even he recognizes that it ain't happening. If it turns out that this was a complete fabrication then Taylor may have a shot at getting on somewhere else, but I can't imagine that Saban wants anything to do with the distraction that would come from having him on the roster.

Austin, Tucson, Little Rock, Orlando apply to host NCAA bowl games

Four cities -- Austin, Texas; Tucson, Arizona; Little Rock, Arkansas; and Orlando, Florida -- applied to the NCAA to add new bowl games this season, sources told If approved as expected, there would be a record 43 bowl games, including the College Football Playoff title game, requiring 84 teams to fill each bowl. That would mean 66 percent of the 127 FBS teams would go bowling.

Look, I get the argument that more football is better than less football, but bowl games used to be a reward for a successful season. I guess being in the top two-thirds is now considered "successful." Welcome to 2015 'Murica.

Kentucky Wildcats, Duke Blue Devils lead best football-basketball coaching combos

4. Tom Izzo and Nick Saban School: Michigan State Overlap: 1995-99 Saban became college football's preeminent coach at a time of unprecedented parity, winning three national titles in four years at Alabama to go with his 2003 championship at LSU. He's the first college football coach to win national titles at two different schools. Izzo, meanwhile, will always be linked to Michigan State, where he started as an assistant in 1983 before succeeding Jud Heathcote. Despite seven regular-season Big Ten titles, Izzo is known for his postseason prowess. He has taken each of his past 18 teams to the NCAA tournament, winning a national title in 2000 and reaching seven Final Fours. Much of Izzo's basketball philosophy is rooted in football, and he remains close with Saban, who in 1999 guided MSU to its best season since 1966.

I mean, Tom, the weather is beautiful down here. There are golf courses everywhere that you and Nick could play once every six months when he takes his 12-hour break from recruiting. You can get so much house for your money and taxes are low. Best of all, it's not Michigan. Once you're finished with that whole Final Four thing this weekend why don't you, I don't know, come have a look?

College Football Teams Use Girlfriends As Recruiting Tools : NPR

In doing all he could to recruit, a coach from the University of Michigan did not merely contact a player. The coach sent a hand-written appeal to the player's girlfriend. Inevitably, she posted the note on social media. Bloomberg View sports writer Kavitha Davidson calls this unprofessional, desperate and creepy.

The Landon Collins recruitment is also mentioned. Yes, there is something a bit unseemly about reaching out to the young ladies who happen to be dating prized recruits. If only that was the creepiest thing college football coaches do in the recruiting process.

UConn coach Geno Auriemma rips men's college basketball - College Basketball -

I mean women's basketball is behind the times. Men's basketball is even further behind the times. Every other major sport in the world has taken steps to help people be better on the offensive end of the floor. They've moved in the fences in baseball, they lowered the mound. They made the strike zone so you need a straw to put through it. And in the NFL you touch a guy it's a penalty. You hit the quarterback, you're out for life. You know, in the NBA, you touch somebody in the perimeter, you whack guys like they used to do when scores were 90 to 75, they changed the rules.

OK, whatever, Geno. You can have your high scoring basketball. You stay away from my college football though.

Softball Continues Hot Hitting in 12-1 Win Over Southern Miss - ROLLTIDE.COM - University of Alabama Official Athletic Site

All but one of the nine batters in the Alabama (27-8) starting lineup reached base safely in the game, including four multi-hit performances. Demi Turner had her fourth straight multi-hit game, going 2-4 out of the leadoff spot with a pair of RBI. Danae Hays went 2-3 with three RBI while Chaunsey Bell drove in three on one swing, launching her third homer of the year in the bottom of the fourth inning. Starter Sydney Littlejohn (11-1) allowed just one run, a second inning solo home run, on four hits, facing just 20 batters on 68 pitches over 5.0 innings.

The bats are on fire and Littlejohn dominates again from the mound. Roll Tide!