With the help of players, coaches, TV analysts, school administrators and NCAA officials, AP College Football Writer Ralph Russo tackles on-and off-field issues affecting the sport throughout the year. The show gives everyone from the casual fan to the obsessed alum, an insider look into the AP Poll and all that is trending on campuses around the country. Be ready for the big game, signing day or spring practice with this weekly chat about college football.
The state of college football in Florida
At Florida, Dan Mullen is breaking in a new quarterback and trying to stay ahead of Georgia. At Florida State, Mike Norvell is just looking for some normalcy in year two of his tenure as the Seminoles coach. Matt Baker from the Tampa Bay Times joins AP’s Ralph Russo to discuss about the state of college football in the state of Florida, from Tallahassee to Miami. Also, Sports Law Professor Gabe Feldman joins the show to review the NCAA’s day in front of the Supreme Court and how the association can escape an NIL quagmire.
If you have questions or comments, email them to APTop25mailbag@gmail.com.
Harbaugh: How we Got Here and Where it’s Going?
There was a point where Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh was the most polarizing figure in college football. While he’s still maybe the most talked about college football coach outside of Nick Saban and Dabo Swinney, it’s getting harder to find supporters. This week on the AP Top 25 College Football Podcast, AP sports writer Josh Dubow, who covered Harbaugh with Stanford and the 49ers and is a Michigan alum, joins Ralph Russo to do a deep dive on where things stand with the Wolverines and their coach. What is a fair assessment of Harbaugh’s tenure and is there realistic hope that he can deliver on the promise and hope that followed him when he arrived at his alma mater in 2015.
Plus, what’s the status of Stanford football under David Shaw and why Josh spends hours a day battling Raiders’ fans on Twitter about David Carr.
If you’d like to send questions or comments to be used on the show, email APTop25mailbag@gmail.com.
Ralph’s Top 25 college football coaches: https://twitter.com/ralphDrussoAP/status/1376553969879818240
Who are College Football’s Best Coaches?
Ranking college football coaches is even tougher than ranking college football teams. But we tend to do it anyway, especially in the offseason. Stewart Mandel from The Athletic and Bruce Feldman from Fox join AP’s Ralph Russo to talk about their current Top 25 college coaches. Bruce and Stew are finally buying in on Brian Kelly as a top-three coach. Stewart gave James Franklin a big demotion after a tough year, but not so much with PJ Fleck. Bruce is still defending Jim Harbaugh and higher on veterans with a long track record like Gary Patterson, Kirk Ferentz and Mike Leach. And they both snubbed Mack Brown.
Plus, the NCAA’s latest misstep and should it cost Mark Emmert his job?
The Brackets Are Back!
The NCAA Tournament is back after a one-year pandemic-forced hiatus. That means the football show turns to basketball for a week. AP college basketball writer Aaron Beard joins Ralph Russo to break down the bracket, search for upsets and pick a Final Four. Plus, what went wrong this season for blue bloods Duke and Kentucky? And why can’t Indiana seem to recapture past glory. And we’ll sprinkle in a some football, too.
Trouble with Kansas, Plus Marshall Coach Charles Huff
The worst Power Five program in college football is once again in the news for all the wrong reasons. Kansas parted ways with coach Les Miles after revelations about inappropriate behavior toward women while he was at LSU. It is another setback for a program that has become synonymous with them. Max Olson from The Athletic joins AP’s Ralph Russo to discuss how Kansas football got so bad, why Miles was never the solution and where it goes from here. Plus, new Marshall coach Charles Huff joins the show to talk about his time working for James Franklin at Penn State and Nick Saban at Alabama, and how it prepared him for his first head coaching job.
Vandy’s new coach and CFB’s biggest underachievers.
New Vanderbilt coach Clark Lea played for the Commodores and grew up in Nashville. If there is a man who understands the challenges and potential for the football program of the Southeastern Conference’s lone private school, it’s Lea, the former Notre Dame defensive coordinator. Then Steven Godfrey of Banner Society joins AP’s Ralph Russo for an in-depth discussion on a topic suggested by a listener: Which programs have recently been the biggest underachievers in each of the 10 FBS conference?
To email questions or comments to the show use APTop25mailbag@gmail.com