WSU voice Robertson retires after 52 seasons

Bob Robertson, who was in his 52nd season on the Washington State football radio broadcast, announced he will retire immediately.

Robertson began calling Cougars games as the play-by-play announcer in 1964 and remained in that role until sliding over to the analyst chair in 2011.

“I’ve been with the Cougars a lot of years, more than half a century, calling basketball, football for the fans around the Northwest and elsewhere around the country and I’ve enjoyed every minute of it,” Robertson said in a statement. “It’s been great to be with you Cougars at your meetings and get-togethers, and I hope we can do it again and I’m sure we will.”

He was inducted into the WSU Athletic Hall of Fame in 2001-02 and also spent 23 years calling the school’s men’s basketball games. He spent several years as a sports anchor in the Seattle market and was the television voice of Notre Dame football and basketball for two seasons in the 1950s.

The Cougars’ current radio broadcast team is Matt Chazanow (play-by-play), former quarterback Alex Brink (analyst) and Jessamyn McIntyre (sideline reporter).

To conclude every broadcast, Robertson would say: “Always be a good sport, be a good sport all ways.”

Best of Week 7: 'Dixieland Delight' makes its glorious return to Alabama

Best of Week 7: 'Dixieland Delight' makes its glorious return to Alabama

Alabama fans did their best to keep the “Dixieland Delight” tradition alive on Saturday night. 

Week 7 has us singing a new verse of an old tune.

The biggest news this week in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, was Tua Tagovailoa’s sprained knee the return of beloved stadium anthem “Dixieland Delight” for the Crimson Tide’s game against Missouri.

The fan favorite — by the band Alabama, the three-time Country Music Association Entertainers of the Year, no less — was last played in Bryant-Denny Stadium in 2015, but was nixed due to the annotations made by a large segment of the crowd (their additions indicated in bold):

Spend my dollar (on beer)
Parked in a holler ‘neath the mountain moonlight (Roll Tide)
Hold her up tight (against the wall)
Make a little lovin’ (all night)
A little turtle dovin’ on a Mason Dixon night (F— Auburn)
Fits my life (and LSU)
Oh so right (and Tennessee, too)
My Diiiixielaaaaaaaaand Delight

Such a shame to corrupt a beautiful tune about … what’s that now? We’ll let Wikipedia break it down:

“The song’s title refers to the girlfriend of the singer. Later in the song, [songwriter Ronnie] Rogers conjures up images of various forest animals (e.g. a white-tailed buck and a red-tailed hawk) and how they bring peace to him, before returning to how the main character plans to become intimate with his girlfriend during their weekend outing.”

Seems like the perfect jam to get the people going in the fourth quarter. So along come athletic director Greg Byrne, Tide running back Damien Harris, UA student body president Price McGiffert and one Miss Terry Saban, begging fans to let “Dixieland Delight” live by not saying the very bad words.

And we’re pleased to report that it made its triumphant return, albeit with an assist from the stadium’s speaker system which blasted the word “beat” over the offending word before Auburn.

Miss Terry is so very proud of y’all. “Dixieland Delight” lives to see another day. Now let’s see what happens when the song plays in the Iron Bowl.


Warning: You might get fired up

LSU defensive end Breiden Fehoko, from Hawaii, performs a haka outside Tiger Stadium with his dad to get ready for Georgia. In retrospect, this was probably a bad sign for the Dawgs, who lost 36-16.


Swish swish

Ohio State’s band has joined your mom in learning how to floss.

Meanwhile, Iowa State not only treated its fans to a 30-14 upset of No. 6 West Virginia, but also this scene at halftime.


A decade of Dabo

A year ago today, Clemson introduced Dabo Swinney as its interim head coach following the ouster of Tommy Bowden. The Tigers released a video to commemorate the anniversary.


Was it in the basement?

Did you know Texas A&M and South Carolina played for a trophy? Gamecocks coach Will Muschamp did not.

According to myaggienation.com, the trophy hasn’t been seen in past years because it has actually been at the Alamo. It’ll stay there for the fifth year as the Aggies are 5-0 against South Carolina since joining the SEC.

Wanna see it? Here it is being held by Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush.


Just kicking it around

Tennessee forced a Jarrett Stidham fumble and bounced it down the field until picking it up for a touchdown.


Off the bench

After Sam Ehlinger left with a shoulder injury on the first drive of the game, Texas quarterback Shane Buechele took over and helped the No. 9 Longhorns to a 23-17 win.

What they’re wearing

Illinois honored a legend for its homecoming game against Purdue.

Ole Miss wore all whites for its visit to Arkansas.

West Virginia suiting up in the Stormtrooper unis for its night game at Iowa State.

Meacham out as Jayhawks' offensive coordinator

Meacham out as Jayhawks' offensive coordinator

The Kansas Jayhawks fired offensive coordinator Doug Meacham on Wednesday, the school announced.

The Jayhawks (2-4, 0-3 in Big 12) have lost three consecutive games.

Kansas coach David Beaty said in a statement that coordination of the team’s offense will be a “team effort” but that he will have the final say on playcalls.

“None of us are satisfied with the progress we are making on the offensive side of the ball,” Beaty said. “We hope that with this change we are better able to put our players in the best position to be successful.”

Meacham, who previously was offensive coordinator at TCU, was hired by Beaty before the 2017 season. He was a finalist for the 2014 Broyles Award, which goes to the nation’s top assistant, after helping the Horned Frogs’ offense boost its scoring by 21 points per game from the previous season.

Since Meacham arrived in Kansas, the Jayhawks are last in the Big 12 in yards per game (335.2), yards per play (4.85) and scoring offense (21.6 points per game), but they improved in scoring offense and yards per play under his watch, averaging 17.75 points and 4.7 yards per play in the two seasons before his arrival.

ESPN’s Sam Khan contributed to this report.

Tagovailoa practicing in full despite knee sprain

Tagovailoa practicing in full despite knee sprain

Alabama starting quarterback Tua Tagovailoa is dealing with a sprained knee he suffered during last weekend’s win over Arkansas, but coach Nick Saban said Wednesday it has not caused him to miss any reps in practice.

Tagovailoa, a Heisman Trophy front-runner, returned to Saturday’s game after suffering the injury and played briefly with a brace on the knee. He has been seen wearing a brace around the facility and during practice this week.

Alabama hosts Missouri on Saturday night.

Tagovailoa has started every game for the Crimson Tide this season. The sophomore from Hawaii has thrown for 1,495 yards with 18 touchdowns and no interceptions. He’s completing 75.2 percent of his passes and has rushed for a pair of touchdowns.

Behind Tagovailoa on the depth chart is Jalen Hurts, who started 28 straight games with a record of 26-2 prior to becoming a backup this season. The junior and former SEC Offensive Player of the Year has appeared in every game this season, completing 30-of-42 passes for 453 yards, five touchdowns and one interception.

Saban also updated the status of starting cornerback Trevon Diggs, who suffered a broken foot during the Arkansas game. After initially ruling him out “indefinitely” earlier in the week, Saban told reporters on Wednesday that he didn’t expect him back at all this season.

McNeill believes Sooners can fix defensive woes

McNeill believes Sooners can fix defensive woes

NORMAN, Okla. — Ruffin McNeill is more than ready to step in as Oklahoma‘s interim defensive coordinator.

He’s been down this road before. He took over as interim defensive coordinator at Texas Tech during the 2007 season and earned the full-time position for the 2008 and 2009 seasons. He later was named interim head coach at Tech for the 2010 Alamo Bowl and led the Red Raiders to a win over Michigan State. Now, Oklahoma coach Lincoln Riley has promoted him after firing defensive coordinator Mike Stoops.

McNeill, who formerly coached the defensive tackles, is thankful for the chance to lead the entire defense.

“I call it a blessing,” he said. “I’m grateful and honored to be at OU first. But the interim doesn’t bother me. I love challenges, and I love opportunities even more than challenges. … Sometimes, you get trained for situations like this.”

Those previous in-season promotions made McNeill the ideal person for the job, Riley said. When McNeill took over for the Alamo Bowl, Riley was interim offensive coordinator at Texas Tech and saw what McNeill could do.

“At the end of the day, I thought we needed somebody to unite the group, and it was really tough to look past Ruffin’s experience,” Riley said. “He’s done so much in his career. There’s very little in college football that he hasn’t done.”

Riley hired McNeill as assistant head coach in 2017. The familiarity McNeill has built since then should make the transition easier. He also benefits because the Sooners have an off week before playing TCU.

“I’m grateful to be around the family now for a second year, a second season,” McNeill said. “Most all the kids know who I am and how I am. I think with the change, it does give some players some opportunities. I’m looking forward to seeing the progress of those kids.”

McNeill said his goal is to keep things simple and focus on fundamentals. Tackling has been an issue for the Sooners, and they plan to fix it.

“I’m the simplest man you’ll know,” he said. “To me, clear mind, fast legs. Cloudy mind, slow legs. With that, we hope that they’ll play faster. At the same time, making sure we have enough calls to be effective and adjustments to be effective.”

The 11th-ranked Sooners still have a lot to play for. Both times the Sooners have reached the College Football Playoff, in 2015 and 2017, Oklahoma lost a game early in the season. The Sooners could return there if they win out.

Whether they can do that will depend a lot on McNeill’s unit, which gave up 501 yards in a 48-45 loss to rival Texas last weekend, costing Stoops his job.

“They’re going to be down a little bit because they put so much into it,” McNeill said of the Texas game. “But also, having been in it this long, the most resilient people on Earth are kids and how they bounce back. The last two days have been some of the most physical practices we’ve had in a long time. The intensity is there. They know they have a lot left.”