Seven college football officials poached by the NFL for 2018


Few draw ire in college football quite like the officials do on a game-by-game basis but good news for fans just about everywhere: you no longer have to deal with seven of the zebras who were clearly biased against your team.

On Friday, the NFL announced their full roster of 121 officials for the upcoming 2018 season. While the loss of notable names like Ed Hochuli, Terry McAulay and Gene Steratore drew a lot of the attention from the announcement, there were several more notable names included in the league’s list that college fans might recognize as getting a promotion from Saturday’s to Sunday’s.

Among the seven college zebras who will now be throwing flags in the NFL: Land Clark (from the Pac-12), Matt Edwards (Big Ten), Chad Hill (SEC), Anthony Jeffries (SEC), Tony Josselyn (SEC), Mark Stewart (Big 12) and Don Willard (Big Ten).

As you can see, the SEC gets hit the hardest with three departures while the Big Ten sees two officials moving on. The ACC is the only Power Five league not to get an official poached (which might be an interesting data point in itself) while Clark was one of the Pac-12’s more well known flag-throwers in recent years. No word on who the conferences will replace the vacancies with as several were head referees.

While almost all the officials out there are unfairly maligned for many of their calls, something says that a few coaches around college football will be smiling a little bit wider on Saturday upon hearing that they won’t have to deal with any of these seven any longer.

Miami fires offensive coordinator Josh Gattis after 1 season

josh gattis fired
Reinhold Matay/USA TODAY Sports

CORAL GABLES, Fla. — Miami fired offensive coordinator Josh Gattis on Friday, ending the former Broyles Award winner’s time with the Hurricanes after only one season.

The school announced the move in a one-sentence press release, with no other detail: “Josh Gattis has been relieved of his duties as offensive coordinator, Miami head football coach Mario Cristobal announced Friday,” read the release, sent from a university spokesman.

The Hurricanes went 5-7 in Gattis’ lone season. He was brought in by Miami only a few weeks after winning the 2021 Broyles Award – given to the nation’s top assistant coach – while serving as Michigan’s offensive coordinator and helping the Wolverines reach the College Football Playoff.

But Miami’s offense, for a number of reasons, failed to meet expectations in 2022. Part of that was injuries; starting quarterback Tyler Van Dyke battled a shoulder injury, and the Hurricanes turned to Jake Garcia – who has since transferred – and Jacurri Brown for much of the season.

Miami scored 100 points in its first two games last fall, overpowering Bethune-Cookman and Southern Miss. The Hurricanes averaged only 18.3 points the rest of the way, and finished the year 5-0 in games where the defense allowed no more than 14 points – but 0-7 when opponents scored more than 14.

Miami was 86th nationally in total offense last season, averaging 367.1 yards per game, and 97th in scoring offense.

Gattis played at Wake Forest and worked at North Carolina, Western Michigan, Vanderbilt, Penn State, Alabama and Michigan before coming to Miami.

Audit: LSU discovered $1M overpayment to Kelly in 2022

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

BATON ROUGE, La. – LSU accidentally overpaid Tigers football coach Brian Kelly by $1 million during the first year of a 10-year, $100 million contract, but discovered the error and has moved to correct it, the Louisiana Legislative Auditor’s office said Wednesday.

Kelly was overpaid $1,001,368 in supplemental payments in 2022 because duplicate payments made both to Kelly’s LLC and to the coach directly.

The double payments began in May and continued until LSU officials detected the errors in November.

“LSU management and the head football coach have enacted an adjusted payment schedule so the amount of overpayment will be recouped by the conclusion of fiscal year 2023,” the Legislative Auditor’s report stated.

Kelly, who previously coached at Notre Dame for 12 seasons, was hired by LSU after the 2021 season, when the Tigers went 6-7 for its first losing season since 1999.

LSU exceeded expectations in Kelly’s first season in Baton Rouge, winning the SEC West Division and finishing 10-4 after a 63-7 victory over Purdue in the Citrus Bowl.