The National, 4/16/12: Spring, Sprung.

This is football. It is a thing that happened this weekend. In Charlottesville, VA, of all places. (Cue Ron Prince jokes.)


The last few days haven't been awash with excitement, and I had more than a few things come up which got in the way of me compiling a rundown on Friday (or even a delayed one on Saturday). These things, they happen.

Leading off: A whole bunch of high-profile schools went out and played some football on Saturday. It's a ritual about which I am curiously apathetic, but then I'm also apathetic about recruiting news; I want real football, not football-like substance to tide me over.

Of course, not everything went as planned. Nebraska had to cancel their scrimmage due to Tornadomageddon, while Indiana and Purdue both had to retreat to indoor facilities. On the other hand, there are shiny new statues of Cam Newton and Bo Jackson outside of Jordan-Hare Stadium, and I know which of the two I'd be more interested in seeing.

Getting Away Scott Drew free: For two Big 12 games, anyway. Baylor's self-imposed sanctions over Textgate were deemed sufficient by the NCAA. To be fair, the sanctions were not all that mild; Baylor's recruiting is going to take a fairly severe hit this season. Most importantly, there's a 22% chance we'll only have to put up with Scott Drew once in 2012-13, for which we should all be grateful.

Hogwash: Bobby Petrino is still fired, and intends to stay that way without putting up a fight. Some NFL-type candidates seem interested in the job. And Christianne Harder, a recruiting and social networking consultant for Western Kentucky who applied for the job Jessica Dorrell ended up with, is kinda pissed off over what the scandal means for women seeking jobs in college football. A must-read.

Something we won't see in person: Missouri's got new uniforms, including what I have to grudgingly admit is a totally bitchin' new alternate helmet.

Even if he's as sleazy as his daddy, it's probably an improvement: Florida International will move on from the Isiah Thomas debacle under the guidance of their new head coach, one Richard Pitino, late of the Louisville staff. He may want to avoid South Beach, as I can think of one scandal he could get into there even more embarrassing than the one in which his father found himself. A less snarky note: Pitino will be the youngest head coach in D-I, at 29.

More coaching news: North Texas coach and former LSU star Johnny Jones will be taking over in Baton Rouge, while our old nemesis Larry Brown is apparently sniffing pretty hard at the tail of the Southern Methodist Mustang.

Transfers and departures and signings, oh my: As you're surely all aware, Alex Oriakhi has fled the sanction-riddled UConn campus to enroll at Mizzou, while Bradley Beal is departing Florida for the NBA. Shabazz Muhammad is headed to Westwood after signing with UCLA, and in news that somehow did not, in fact, manage to shock the world (or anyone at all), Nerlens Noel committed to Kentucky.

A somber conclusion: Two Western Kentucky players celebrated their spring game by getting shot in a local club. Neither player's injuries are life-threatening, though exact details on the extent of their injuries are still unavailable. A Florida student, however, was not so lucky. Michael Richard Edmonds, Jr. apparently leapt to his death from a stairwell in UF's Ben Hill Griffin Stadium last night.

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