Brady Hoke grapples with the shame of finishing his first year at Michigan with a mere Sugar Bowl berth. (AP)
• Can't fault his logic. Summer is the most frustrating point on the college football calendar when it comes to parsing coachspeak for actual facts. Every team had a really great summer. Every team's new strength coach has moved it light-years beyond last year's benchmarks. Offenses are crisper; defenses are really hunkering down (while playing faster at the same time). And every program's immediate and entirely attainable goal is to win a conference championship.
Brady Hoke, like everyone else in his profession, spoke along these lines when he first took the reins at Michigan last year. The Wolverines went 11-2 and won the Sugar Bowl. Those two losses were conference losses and cost them a shot at the Big Ten title. Hoke's self-assessment, therefore, is that he failed in his first year. This is our favorite thing any coach has said in months.
Elsewhere in Wolverenia: The starting running back gig is publicly up for grabs, and the receiving corps is thinned for the moment following Roy Roundtree's knee surgery.
• We return one more time to Friday's well. Previously on INTEGRITY OF THE COACHES' POLL: Lane Kiffin and USA Today got in a snit over his vote in their poll party. Today's episode: Kiffykins gives no bothers, and doesn't even want to be in your stupid Coaches' Poll. While we're all here, this is a fine time to argue over USC's crime statistics versus UCLA's.
• Concerning Auburn's Jovon Robinson. Jon Solomon wraps this up neatly for you: "Auburn is keeping the freshman running back out of practice while the NCAA investigates allegations that his Wooddale High School transcript was falsified." This, for the moment, is all the information we have, so please hold all jokes. Kyle Veazey has been all over this story from the Memphis end. The Bylaw Blog parses the eligibility issues in play.
• Injury report story hour. Monteé Ball spoke to the media for the first time since being assaulted two weeks ago ... Northwestern running back Treyvon Green is expected to make a full recovery after being hospitalized for a blow to the chest taken in practice ... Arkansas is exercising extreme caution with Knile Davis ... Penn State transfer Anthony Fera was out of practice with a groin injury just days after arriving at Texas ... and from the "injuries that have not technically happened yet but are eerily probable" department, UCLA has a job of work to do keeping all of quarterback Brett Hundley's limbs attached to his body.
• We've got movement on the freight elevator. Jake Stoneburner to return to wide receiving ... Georgia might end up throwing another true freshman in at tailback ... Texas could end up playing three quarterbacks, because why not.
• Roster blotter. Nebraska offensive tackle Tyler Moore and Alabama cornerback Travis Dixon have left their respective teams for non-specified personal issues ... McNeese State coach Matt Viator, whose last name contains almost all the letters needed to spell "violator," released a statement confirming he met with Tyrann Mathieu, which he's really not supposed to do.
CBS put together an impressive all-dismissals roster
, coached by Bobby Petrino ... A "Big Sky-WAC alliance" just looks sinister in print
... Tennessee was forced by weather to practice on a high school football field named for Steve Spurrier
, who sends his best wishes
... and we are inexplicably enchanted with Virginia Tech's turkey-footed helmets