College Football Insider Blog 

An inside look at the teams, players, coaches and trends that shape college football Saturdays

Death threats force carnival organizers to cancel Harvey Updyke appearance

  • 1:50 pm Friday, August 22nd, 2014 by Andy Johnston

Harvey Updyke is off the hook.

At least for any pies to the face or dunk tank splashes.

The organizers of a charity event scheduled for Sept. 29 in Mobile, Ala., canceled Updyke’s appearance after former Alabama quarterback AJ McCarron’s mother, Dee Dee Bonner, and wife Katherine received death threats on social media, ESPN.com reported.

An Auburn student was questioned by Auburn city police about a threat against one of the organizers, ESPN.com reported.

Updyke originally was scheduled to appear in a dunk tank or in a pie throwing booth.

The event was organized to honor John Oliver, who died from cancer last month, [More]

Auburn fans have opportunity to dunk, throw pie at Harvey Updyke

  • 7:45 am Thursday, August 21st, 2014 by Andy Johnston

If you’re still upset about the oaks in Toomer’s Corner, here’s your chance.

Harvey Updyke has said he will be either in a dunk tank or at a pie throwing booth at a charity event in Mobile, Alabama, on Sept. 27, ESPN.com reported.

You surely remember Updyke.

He’s the zealous Alabama fan — is there another kind? — who poisoned the beloved 130-year-old oaks after Auburn’s win over Alabama in the 2010 Iron Bowl, leading to their death and removal.

“He thought about it and thought about it,” Updyke’s wife, Elva, told ESPN.com. “His daughter said he needed to do it because [More]

Will SEC Network cut into football game attendance?

  • 2:20 pm Tuesday, August 5th, 2014 by Andy Johnston

There are nine days until the launch of the SEC Network (5 p.m. Aug. 14), which made an expected late rally to join DirecTV’s lineup (and its 20 million subscribers) and push its reach to 85 million households.

The SEC certainly will benefit from the network, mainly in the form of money. A lot of money.

But who else will profit from ESPN’s newest venture that will televise more than 1,000 live SEC sporting events, including 45 football games this fall?

An article at MrSEC.com runs down what it perceives will be the winners and losers from the SEC Network.

The winners [More]

Bob Stoops doesn’t like Nick Saban calling Sugar Bowl a ‘consolation’

  • 6:30 am Thursday, July 24th, 2014 by Andy Johnston

These coaching spats are getting out of hand.

I just profiled the ongoing verbal battle between South Carolina’s Steve Spurrier and Clemson’s Dabo Swinney, and now Oklahoma’s Bob Stoops and Alabama’s Nick Saban are going at it.

One day after Saban called the last season’s Sugar Bowl a “consolation game,” Stoops answered told ESPN: “That’s a good one.”

“They didn’t look like it was a consolation game on that first drive when they scored a touchdown and everyone thought they were going to rout us. I’ve been in plenty of those (non-national title games). We’ve played in a bunch [More]

Need a college football fix? ESPNU to replay 2013’s top games

  • 11:36 am Tuesday, July 8th, 2014 by Andy Johnston

If you’re tired of watching soccer or tennis or just need a warmup for the upcoming football season, you can watch what ESPN is calling the best 25 games of 2013 later this month.

ESPNU will air many of the Top 25 College Football Games of 2013, beginning with two on July 21. The top five will be decided upon by the fans from a list that includes these games (You can vote here; it ends July 28):

Auburn vs. Alabama
Florida State vs. Auburn
Ohio State vs. Michigan
Texas A&M vs. Duke
Auburn vs. Georgia

I don’t know about you, but it’s [More]

Report: SEC Network nears deal with Comcast

  • 4:28 pm Monday, June 30th, 2014 by Andy Johnston

You might want to hold out for a couple of weeks if you’re a Comcast subscriber who’s worried that you won’t have the SEC Network.

The SEC Network, which debuts Aug. 14, and Comcast, the nation’s largest cable provider, are “working out final details,” Comcast spokesperson John Demming told FoxSports.com. “We expect to come to an agreement in the near future.”

Comcast is a major provider metro Atlanta and Georgia, so it’s addition will be huge for SEC fans statewide.

Dish Network, AT&T Uverse and Google Fiber have agreed to carry the SEC Network, and adding Comcast, would put the SEC [More]

ESPN’s Lou Holtz says he’s retiring … again

  • 9:42 am Tuesday, May 20th, 2014 by Andy Johnston

Is it for real this time?

Lou Holtz has said he’s retiring before, but always returned to ESPN’s college football coverage.

He seems determined to leave for real when he told Blue and Gold Illustrated, a Notre Dame website, that he’s retiring after the 2014 season.

Here’s a part of the website’s Q&A with Holtz, who is 77 years old and has been with ESPN since 2004.

“I’d like to leave when people say, ‘Why are you leaving?’ not ‘When are you leaving?’ This is my fifth last year. They usually talk me into it. ESPN is a great organization to work [More]