Romo gets paid
Tony Romo earned an average of $9.1 million over 14 seasons with the Dallas Cowboys. He’ll earn nearly double that in one year with CBS after reportedly signing a $100-million deal worth $17 million per year, which would make him the highest-paid NFL analyst in TV history.
Michael Thomas, who’s slated to make $11 million in 2020, used Romo’s deal to push back against the new CBA proposal, tweeting “[T]hat’s why we shouldn’t sign the new CBA agreement no way the announcer should be making more than 90% of the players.”
Only four receivers have a salary cap value over $17 million this season: Sammy Watkins, Julio Jones, Mike Evans and Tyreek Hill. Sixteen quarterbacks are above $17 million, a group that Romo’s successor Dak Prescott could join with an exclusive franchise tag.
Last week, Packers’ CEO Mark Murphy said he’s intrigued by the XFL’s kickoff formation, noting the increased safety with decreased speed. A day later, Will Muschamp, said the “kickoff may be where [college football] is headed.”
And on Friday, The Citadel announced the adoption of several XFL rules for their spring game on March 7, among them:
Kickoffs: Kick from the 35-yard line with the coverage team at the return side’s 35, five yards away from the return team. Neither team is allowed to move until the returner catches the ball.
No PAT: Offense may run a play from the 2-, 5-, or 10-yard line to score one, two, or three points, respectively. If the defense returns a turnover to the endzone, they are awarded the number of points the offense was attempting to score.
Double-forward pass: Double-forward passes are allowed as long as the first pass is behind the line of scrimmage.
Watch your weed
Says the MLB despite removing marijuana from its list of drugs of abuse earlier this offseason.
“Marijuana will be removed from the list of drugs of abuse and will be treated the same as alcohol as part of changes announced Thursday to the joint drug agreement between MLB and the players’ association. In addition, suspensions for marijuana use will be dropped from the minor league drug program.”
The joint drug agreement apparently did not eliminate penalties for using marijuana, according to a memo obtained by ESPN’s Jeff Passan:
“For baseball players taking advantage of a new drug policy in which marijuana use is permissible, the commissioner has a warning: Just don't show up to the ballpark high.
“Even though Major League Baseball removed marijuana from its banned-substance list during the offseason, the league last week told teams that players remain subject to potential discipline for using or possessing the drug, according a memo obtained by ESPN.
“In the memo, deputy commissioner Dan Halem wrote that the league maintains the right to punish players who break existing marijuana laws, such as possession and distribution, as well as for driving under the influence.”
Related from SI’s Kalyn Kahler: How much do NFL teams care about marijuana-related incidents given the changes to the CBA?
Odds & Ends
Richard Pitino’s buyout and potential replacements candidates if he’s fired … LSU student charged with burglary and trespassing after breaking into Tiger Stadium on two separate occasions to drive an ATV onto the field … Remember that Eastern Washington faculty report on athletics? Yeah, that’s not happening … Inside baseball’s fight to reclaim its soul … New trailer for Jordan Peele’s ‘Candyman’ … Los Angeles deputies are under investigation for sharing graphic photos of the Kobe Bryant crash … There must be more appetizing ways to gain weight … This woman is a Wheel of Fortune wizard.
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