It’s kind of a hectic weekend on the Plains. Let’s get to the news ….
BIG RECRUITING WEEKEND PLANNED
About 25 recruits will be in town this weekend for what Auburn coaches are terming a “The Big Cat Weekend,” according to our good friends who are all over the recruiting scoop at AuburnSports.com. Topping the list are the nation’s top two ranked running backs — Lache Seastrunk of Temple, Texas, and Marcus Lattimore of Duncan, S.C. Here is a list of some of the highest-ranked players expected to be in town, courtesy of Rivals.com:
- RB Lache Seastrunk, 5-11, 192, Temple, Texas, 5-star
- RB Marcus Lattimore, 5-11, 210, Duncan, S.C., 5-star
- WR Trovon Reed, 6-0, 173, Thibodaux, La., 4-star
- WR Jeremy Richardson, 6-4, 190, Springville, Ala., 4-star
- WR Antonio Goodwin, 6-2, 170, Atlanta, Ga., 4-star
- OG Eric Mack, 6-4, 315, St. Matthews, S.C., 4-star
- OT James Stone, 6-5, 297, Nashville, Tenn., 4-star
- OLB Khairi Fortt, 6-3, 220, Stamford, Conn., 4-star
- DE J.C. Copeland, 6-2, 240, LaGrange, Ga., 4-star (a Tennessee commit)
- CB Ryan Ayers, 5-10, 175, Douglasville, Ga., 4-star
McNEIL LEAVES FOR BIRMINGHAM-SOUTHERN JOB
DeMarco McNeil, who stayed on from Gene Chizik‘s staff as a defensive graduate assistant after working two years under Tommy Tuberville, has left Auburn to coach defensive line at Division III Birmingham-Southern. McNeil, who played for the Tigers from 1999-2003, first joined the Auburn staff as a student assistant in 2007.
SEC SCHOOLS GET BIG PAYOUT THIS YEAR
There was plenty of news coming out of the annual SEC meetings in Destin, Fla., where the conference announced a combined payout of $132.5 million among the 12 schools. That’s $11.1 million per school for you non-math majors. That’s the most the conference has ever paid out, topping the the previous best of $127.6 million last year. This year’s breakdown was as follows:
- $52 million: Football television
- $25.4 million: Bowl games
- $23.1 million: NCAA championships
- $14.3 million: SEC football championship
- $13.6 million: SEC basketball television
- $4.1 million: SEC men’s basketball tournament
The SEC also limited the size of signing classes to 28 per year, a rule that will go into affect next year. Auburn signed 28 exactly last year. Ole Miss signed 37, prompting the change.
JACOBS TALKS TV TIMES
In a rare blog update on the Auburn athletic Web site, athletic director Jay Jacobs outlined some of the changes to the SEC’s football TV schedule now that it has new deals with CBS and ESPN. Here are the finer points:
- Eleven of Auburn’s 12 games will be televised in 2009. The 12th game will be available on pay-per-view.
- The majority of the season, CBS will get first choice to televise a game of the week at 3:30 p.m. ET.
- ESPN has the rights to every other SEC home game, giving the conference three channels where games can be found if they are not on CBS — ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU.
- Most ESPN and ESPN2 games will be in primetime on Saturday nights. ESPN will also televise two Thursday night games.
- ESPN Regional Television replaces Raycom and will televise games on affiliates like Raycom did in the past with early kickoffs.
- CBS will air the SEC championship game on Dec. 5, 2009.