Oregon's Kelly, Thurmond voted for Tebow
July, 30, 2009
By Ted Miller | ESPN.com
Posted by ESPN.com's Ted Miller
LOS ANGELES -- These notes should seem random and all over the place.
- Oregon coach Chip Kelly made his Pac-10 media day debut with this quip: "Both myself and Walter Thurmond voted for Tim Tebow as first-team, SEC quarterback."
- Speaking of quarterbacks: None were on hand representing any of the ten teams. No reporter or conference administrator on hand could remember a Pac-10 media day that didn't feature a single quarterback.
- USC coach Pete Carroll said that oft-injured linebacker Luthur Brown may not be with the teams this year due to academic issues. The Trojans already rebuilding linebacking corps has taken a couple of hits of late, with incoming freshman Frankie Telfort's career ending due to a heart condition and Malcolm Smith, one of the stars of spring, undergoing surgery on his esophagus.
- Arizona coach Mike Stoops showed up looking like he could suit up this fall. Stoops, long a serious runner, hit the weights hard in the offseason, clearly in order to make paunchy reporters feel bad.
- All 10 coaches posed for a pre-news-conference photo, surrounding the Rose Bowl trophy. There were lots of grins and backslaps. The Rose Bowl, site of the BCS title game, is double-hosting this year.
- Stanford running back Toby Gerhart on his running style: "Coach [Jim] Harbaugh said I like to feed people my pads."
- Carroll was asked what he would do if he could change something about college football: "We would have an awesome playoff system."
- Arizona State coach Dennis Erickson on linebacker Mike Nixon, who played pro baseball for a while and received a nice signing bonus, which allows him to pay his own tuition and own his own home: "It's the greatest house I've ever seen for somebody not on scholarship. his house is a hell of a lot bigger than mine."
- Arizona safety Cam Nelson was asked if it bothered him that the Wildcats were picked eighth in the media poll. "It doesn't bother me at all," Nelson began, unconvincingly. Stoops then interrupted, "That means it does bother you." One got the feeling Stoops and Nelson both were perturbed, though only 13 points separated the Wildcats and No. 5 Arizona State.
- California coach Jeff Tedford said the Bears may travel to Minnesota for their Sept. 19 game a day early to get acclimated to the time change, but he also said he doesn't believe the a.m. kickoff last year at Maryland was as much of an issue as the humidity.
- Oregon State linebacker Keaton Kristick showed up at the hotel Wednesday in what looked suspiciously like a "lightning yellow" and green Nike T-shirt -- Oregon colors! The Beavers notoriously caffeinated captain -- he'd hit the hotel Starbucks minutes after his arrival -- said something about "Brazil" and "soccer" to explain himself.
- With sociable Oregon coach Mike Bellotti now the Ducks athletic director, there was real concern about whether any coaches would show up in the Pac-10 hospitality suite Wednesday night. Fortunately, Erickson and Washington State coach Paul Wulff showed up to chat and enjoy free food and libations.