NIU Coach Thomas Hammock on Ravens Transition From Ray Rice (Exclusive)

thomas hammock

Newly minted Northern Illinois football coach Thomas Hammock spent the past five seasons as running backs coach of the Baltimore Ravens, and his first year on the job was tumultuous to say the least. During Hammock’s third month on the job, the video of Ray Rice beating his fiancee was released, and the team promptly terminated the contract of the franchise’s all-time second leading rusher.

On Friday, Hammock, a NIU alum, was introduced to the Chicago media as the next head football coach. During the media session, Hammock was asked about how he grew and developed as a person during his time in Baltimore.

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2019 NFL Mock Draft 1-21-19

nfl draft

It’s 2019 NFL mock draft time! The order is now set, up until the divisional round of the playoffs. Team needs were sometimes, but often not taken into account, as it’s still early for a 2019 mock draft in the purest sense.

A true 2019 NFL mock draft can’t really be composed until after 2019 free agency. Have issues with the picks? Of course you do! Many often bones to pick, so have at it in the comments section. Just try to not be like the others who hurl insults and instead keep it classy and professional. Sure, this disclaimer will go completely ignored, as it always does, but I’ll say it anyway- “THERE IS NO NEED FOR NAME CALLING!”

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Top Priority for New NIU Football Coach Thomas Hammock Must Be Bowl Wins

thomas hammock

Thomas Hammock officially returned to Northern Illinois University after having spent the last five seasons as the running backs coach with the Baltimore Ravens. As a player, Hammock rushed for 2,432 rushing yards in his NIU career (1999-2002), which still ranks 13th all-time in school history. The currently 37-year-old Hammock returned to DeKalb, to serve as running backs coach under Joe Novak during 2005-06.

In Hammock’s first season, future Chicago Bear Garrett Wolfe rushed for 1,580 yards and 16 touchdowns in just nine games as NIU won the MAC West Division and appeared in the MAC Championship Game for the first time. The next season, Wolfe rushed for an national high 1,928 yards as the Huskies reached the Poinsettia Bowl.

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Notre Dame QB Brandon Wimbush on Why He’s Off Social Media

brandon wimbush notre dame fighting irish

Editor’s note: re-running this today, in the wake of the news that Brandon Wimbush has officially transferred to Central Florida, and will play his final season of college football at UCF.

The adverse effects of social media are being further studied everyday. As the alarming results of these findings continue to gain more publicity, social media usage has started to stagnate. Facebook, Snapchat and Twitter have stopped growing. Only Instagram is maintaining steady growth right now.

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2019 Northwestern Football Very Early Season Preview

2018 was a banner, yet still very strange season for Northwestern football. It saw the first winless non-conference regular season since 1992, Gary Barnett’s very first season in Evanston. However, it also included a very nice bowl win over the Pac 12 runner-up/winner of the league’s south division.

It was an autumn that brought Pat Fitzgerald’s worst loss (Akron) since his very first home game in charge (New Hampshire, 2006) and his first Big Ten Coach of the Year award, on strength of a 8-1 league record. At various points during the season, Fitzgerald brought attention to his non-believers and detractors. At times, he mentioned the odds-makers, bloggers, Clayton Thorson critics and media who he felt didn’t give the offensive line as much positive publicity as he felt they deserved.

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2019 Notre Dame Football First Look Season Preview

The 2018 Notre Dame football season ended in a manner that no one affiliated with the program wanted- a very lopsided loss to #2 Clemson in the Cotton Bowl semifinal. The end result was a margin of defeat that was only one point better than the 2012 BCS National Championship game.

Naturally, lots of 2012/2018 analogies have been made, but that narrative has plenty of limitations, as Notre Dame football has changed so much since then.

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Four Clemson Football Players Who Could be First Round NFL Draft Picks

clemson football

Clemson football is the program that comes closest to matching Alabama’s dominance in recent years. At least in the College Football Playoff era. In this the fifth season of the CFP, the 20 berths so far break down like this: Alabama 5, Clemson 4, Oklahoma 3, Ohio State 2, Notre Dame, Oregon, Florida State, Georgia, Washington and Michigan State all have 1. 

So of the 20 berths, 60% have gone to just three teams, and Clemson football is one of them. Dabo Swinney’s program beat Alabama for the 2016 national title, but lost to them in the 2015 national championship and 2017 Sugar Bowl semifinal. The odds makers have both teams as double digit favorites to win their semifinal games and play for the national title again; which would make it the third time in five years.

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#1 Alabama Crimson Tide vs #2 Clemson Tigers: National Championship Game Preview, Prediction

national title game

The #1 Alabama Crimson Tide and #2 Clemson Tigers will meet in the national championship game for the third time in four years —and it seriously has me wondering whether or not the north actually won the Civil War.

Seriously though, right now it seems that a couple programs in the southeastern part of the country play a completely different sport that is far above the rest of college football and below the NFL. And we just don’t know when and how the rest of the country will find a way to close the gap.

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Clemson QB Trevor Lawrence Should Be the #1 Overall Pick in His Draft Class

trevor lawrence

Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence is the kind of player that could hypothetically force a conversation about applying the NBA “one and done” rule to football. Much has been made in basketball about the extremely talented kids who shouldn’t be forced to go to school, ply their trade and not get paid, when they have the ability go pro and make money doing what they love right now. 

No one talks about in football, and yes these players are rare, but the 6-5, Cartersville, Georgia native has a NFL caliber arm right now. Beyond the arm talent, he has the whole package in the eyes of NFL scouts. (Just needs to add a few pounds of muscle) 

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Six Potential Destinations for Former Notre Dame QB Brandon Wimbush

brandon wimbush notre dame fighting irish

Notre Dame QB2 Brandon Wimbush has now made it official that he’s going to transfer out, and find a place where can start next season. This development was expected, as news of a potential transfer emerged heading into the Cotton Bowl semifinal. Wimbush started four games this season, and 12 last season, becoming just the third quarterback in Notre Dame history with more than 1,000 yards passing and 500 yards rushing in the same season.

Sometimes, but not always, transfers pick a location close to home for their final season and thus we start the listicle with two destinations that aren’t far from Teaneck, New Jersey (home town of the Isley Brothers BTW!).

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Notre Dame Football: Three Players the Fighting Irish Really Need Back in 2019

julian love

The very one-sided loss to #2 Clemson in the Cotton Bowl Semifinal showed the country that Notre Dame football still has a major gap to close on the national elite programs While the end result and overall big picture mirrored what happened versus Alabama in 2012, the program is still very different from what it was six years ago.

While many have been analogizing 2012 and 2018 Notre Dame football, the comparisons have some limitations. Right now Clemson and Alabama are at a level that’s a tier above the rest of the nation and in 2019 we’ll see if anyone can traverse that chasm.

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Pat Fitzgerald Emphatically Shoots Down Green Bay Packers Rumors

pat fitzgerald

So much for the Pat Fitzgerald to the Green Bay Packers rumors. In celebrating a record setting come-from-behind Holiday Bowl victory over the #17 Utah Utes, the Northwestern head coach made an emphatic statement.

It was reported by multiple outlets on Sunday that Packers CEO Mark Murphy, who elevated Fitzgerald to head coach in 2006 when he was NU athletic director, was interested in interviewing Fitzgerald for the open Packers head coaching position.

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