- Ivan Maisel, ESPN Senior Writer
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1. Tom Osborne had a tough standard to live up to as Nebraska athletic director -- the one he set as the Huskers football coach for 25 years. Not only did Osborne stabilize a football program that had gone shaky under his predecessor, but he shepherded the university from the internecine battles of the Big 12 to the safe and financially secure harbor of the Big Ten. You’d have to say that when Osborne retires in January, he will have met that tough standard.
2. In the first week of the season, Penn State quarterback Paul Jones volunteered to head coach Bill O’Brien to take snaps at tight end and fullback. Jones said it in a joking fashion, but O’Brien didn’t want to hear that from a second-team quarterback who still didn’t have a good grasp of the offense. In fact, O’Brien said that week that if starter Matt McGloin couldn’t play, freshman Steven Bench would go into the game. Jones did move to tight end, and now he’s leaving. Attrition with a new coach is not abnormal. O’Brien’s problem is that the NCAA sanctions won’t allow him to refill the roster.
3. So now Georgia quarterback Aaron Murray is a nerd, as Dawgs wide receiver Tavarres King told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. King meant it as a compliment to Murray’s knowledge. I made the same point last month about Stanford junior Josh Nunes, who won the starting job because head coach David Shaw trusted the offense in Nunes’ hands. Given the split-second reads that quarterbacks make when they break the huddle, not to mention when they take the snap, a big arm these days had better be connected to a big brain.
13hSharon Katz, ESPN Stats & Information
2dTom VanHaaren and Erik McKinney