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Major Applewhite has big plans for Ed Oliver. Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images

Urban Meyer began his week by firing his recruiting coordinator

Urban Meyer and Ohio State were backed into a corner and had to fire the school’s WR coach as Big Ten Media Day was in full swing. The firing stems from college football insider Brett McMurphy reporting that ex-Ohio State Buckeye WR coach Zach Smith was involved in multiple physical altercations with his now ex-wife Courtney Smith. The earliest reported incident occurred in 2009 according to McMurphy which the Ohio State head coach knew about. Meyer said what you might expect when questioned about firing Smith. He referred to what’s best for the players and the program and let be known it wasn’t a unilateral decision on his part. Other were involved in making the final decision he let it be known.

None of that is even all that interesting. I’d sure like to know why Smith’s actions were deemed a fireable offense when it became public knowledge and not so when it was under wraps. Meyer says there is nothing to an alleged 2015 incident involving Smith and his ex-wife that is also in Murphy’s report. The police department who has jurisdiction agrees with Meyer. They say there is no record of a police report despite McMurphy publishing that he has seen the 2015 report. Smith appeared to be in good standing with the program so a potential 2015 incident that Ohio State knew about could make it extremely uncomfortable for the Buckeyes. Ohio State and Meyer rode the rails for as long they could with Smith. Meyer made it clear that multiple people had a say in the decision to fire Smith.

More Ed Oliver news

Houston coach Major Applewhite says Ed Oliver may see time on offense this season. Applewhite wants to get the ball to the future first round selection in anyway he can. That devil may care attitude could change rather quickly if an undersized cornerback decides go low to get Oliver on the ground. One “he’s slow to get up” situation could change Applewhite’s outlook on playing Houston’s best player both ways. I’m interested to see how many “Heisman Moments” Oliver can compile before caution takes over.

Khalil Tate knew exactly what he was doing

During Arizona’s coaching search after the unexpected firing of Rich Rodriguez one hot name to replace him was Navy man Ken Niumatalolo. Arizona’s star QB Khalil Tate wanted no part of the triple option, a staple of Niumatalolo’s offense and took to twitter to let everyone know about it. In an interview with Bleacher Report, Tate fully admits the tweet was a ploy to affect the coaching search, "I knew exactly what I was doing when I tweeted that out," Tate told Bleacher Report. "I don't do Twitter. When I tweet something, I download the app, tweet, then delete the app from my phone. So when I tweet, it's important." Tate continued, "I had to make sure I was heard, make sure the team was heard, because my teammates didn't want to run the triple option, either. So the idea was to tweet it out, let it get traction, then delete it. I knew people reading it would say, 'Why did he delete it?' But that just magnifies it more."

How impactful was his tweet? We’ll never really know. The Arizona administration will never admit they allowed a player, even if he happens to be their star player, to change the direction of a coaching search. I applaud Tate for attempting to maintain some control over his fate. He plays a sport that generally favors the administrators and coaches over the players. Did Tate’s tweet cause the Wildcats to change course and hire Kevin Sumlin? I hope so.


 

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Houston is falling down the rankings

Tigers pound Odorizzi, Astros with homers as Houston drops fourth in a row

The Astros have not looked great in their last four games. Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

After watching their hot start of 6-1 cool down to a 6-4 record with three straight losses, the Astros returned to Minute Maid Park on Tuesday night, looking to do a better job at home against a beatable Tigers team.

Recent games' woes would continue, though, with Houston's pitching getting blasted by the opposing offense and their own bats primarily quiet.

Final Score: Tigers 8, Astros 2

Astros' Record: 6-5, tied for second in AL West

Winning Pitcher: Matthew Boyd (2-1)

Losing Pitcher: Jake Odorizzi (0-1)

Astros score first, then Tigers unload on Odorizzi

Houston looked to have something brewing in the bottom of the second, with three singles in the first four batters of the inning, the third an RBI-single by Myles Straw to put the Astros in front 1-0. However, Matthew Boyd would limit the damage, getting back-to-back strikeouts to end the threat.

After two easy innings for Jake Odorizzi in his regular-season debut for his new team, he would allow a game-tying solo homer to Akil Baddoo, his fourth of the year, in the top of the third. Detroit struck again in the top of the fourth, getting a leadoff double to set up a two-run go-ahead home run to jump ahead 3-1.

They didn't stop there, getting another two-run bomb later in the same inning; a frame that would take Odorizzi 31 pitches to get only one out before Houston would bring in Bryan Abreu to get the last two outs. Odorizzi's final line in his debut: 3.1 IP, 7 H, 5 ER, 3 HR, 0 BB, 4 K, 80 P.


Detroit continues home run parade, Houston loses fourth in a row

Abreu would hope to do what Luis Garcia did the night before, eat up as many innings as possible after a poor outing from Houston's starter. The Tigers would get yet another two-run homer, though, in the top of the fifth, extending their lead to 7-1, with all seven runs coming over a three-inning span. For good measure, they'd knock one more out with two outs in the top of the ninth, making it 8-1.

As far as Houston at the plate, other than their string of hits to bring in a run earlier in the second, they were getting nothing done against Boyd, who would go six and two-thirds innings. Detroit's bullpen would finish things off, despite an all-too-late sac fly by the Astros in the bottom of the ninth, with Houston dropping their fourth-straight game and continuing to lose ground in the division.

Up Next: The finale of this three-game set with Detroit will be an hour earlier on Wednesday, getting underway at 6:10 PM Central. Lance McCullers Jr. (1-0, 1.80 ERA) will try to maintain his perfect record and improve upon his two five-inning one-run starts for the Astros, going opposite of Michael Fulmer (0-0, 2.57 ERA) for the Tigers.

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