Brian Hartline is happy in today's skull session.

Skull Session: Brian Hartline Breaks Down His Former Receivers, NCAA Considers Getting Rid of Limits on Assistant Coaches, and Ohio State is NFL U

It is the instant millionaire day.

Word of the Day: Affluent.

BREAKING THEM DOWN. One of my favorite things about Brian Hartline is that when you ask him a question, he gives you the real answer – not the answer he thinks you can comprehend, or coachspeak, or anything like that.

For example, when most coaches are asked to break down a player’s game, you get a lot of draft buzz words and phrases or extremely vague descriptions that could apply to every single player in the like “hard worker,” “extremely athletic,” ” very physical,” or “student of the game.”

But with Hartline, you get this:

On Wilson: “Garrett is gonna be very explosive. He’s a guy that is coming from the college hashes, and now gets to go play in the middle of the field on every single snap. I think the ability for him to get off the line of scrimmage, create separation at the catch point and then carry the ball after the fact is really gonna bode well in the NFL game. His catch radius is off the charts, and I think his ability to transition to the NFL will be smooth. Inside or outside, he’s plug-and-play. You can put him anywhere you want. …and Garrett’s an ultimate competitor. He wants team periods every single minute of practice; he hates scout team periods—that’s how he’s wired. He always wants to compete; he always wants the game on the line. That’s just how he’s operated, both in high school and college.”

On Olave: “Chris is gonna be a quarterback’s dream—they’re gonna know where he’s going, when he’s supposed to be there, [he’s] always in the right spot. His ball-tracking and his completion percentage when targeted is off the charts. So I think a quarterback is gonna really appreciate the way he plays. And when it comes to ball-tracking, he can do it all. He could create so much separation so consistently on Saturdays, that the need to rise up and go above guys was few and far between. But when you turn on the film, you can see him doing it over and over again, like Garrett does. … Chris can play anywhere, it comes down to what you need done; these guys have been trained to play in every spot. So it doesn’t matter what you want. They both have a great feel for the game, and they both can play outside, too. … Chris, in the room, has a quiet confidence to him. He’s not gonna always speak up all the time, but he’s gonna be pulling guys to the side, that’s just who he is. He’s got a big heart. Like Garrett, they’re ultracompetitors, they just want to win. Anything that helps them do that, they’re gonna do it.”

On Williams: “Jameson, it’s well documented, he’s very explosive, can play at a high rate of speed the further he gets down the field. What I loved about Jamo is he always had so much energy; he was always available on the field, never really dinged up and always was a guy who brought juice into practice. Whether the ball was coming his way or not, he was one of those guys you wanted to have out there with you. … He became a great route runner. We spent so much time working on his route craft, and he believed in it so much, he was getting really good at it. So he’s not just a speed guy; he’s a route runner, too.”

I feel like I am smarter after reading that.

It’s also so, so clear how personally invested he is in their individual development and growth as players. He talks about them with a level of pride that suggests their success is the single most important thing in his life right now – probably because it is.

I know I have my biases, but I sincerely have no idea how you could pass up the opportunity to have him as your coach if you had the chance. He’s the type of coach you would do anything for – even if that means buying several Apple Gift Cards to somehow help him with a presentation.

ALL THE COACH’S MEN. Technically speaking, the only coaches allowed to actually coach players under the current NCAA rules are the head coach, his 10 assistants, and two graduate assistants. That’s it.

As you might have noticed, nobody even almost follows that rule, with the armies of “quality control” coaches filling out every program directory across the country. So they’re going to change it.

Several athletic administrators and college sports insiders discussed the Transfer Committee’s concepts under the condition of anonymity. They include (1) eliminating scholarship caps on sports that offer only partial scholarships; (2) abolishing the limitation on the number of coaches per team; (3) expanding direct payments from schools to athletes; (4) reconfiguring the recruiting calendar; and (5) implementing closed periods in the NCAA transfer portal. At least the first three items will be left in the decision-making hands of individual conferences, if the concepts are approved.

While these are only concepts and not approved measures, the ideas are being socialized across the college sports landscape, both in conference-wide meetings and at administrative summits such as the one in Dallas hosted by LEAD1, an organization that represents the FBS athletic directors. The items will be central topics at league meetings next month, when coaches, athletic administrators and university presidents gather to discuss national and conference legislation. (Any recommendations would likely need approval from the NCAA Division I Council and Board of Governors before becoming official.)

“Change is coming,” says another athletic director on hand for the committee’s three-hour presentation Monday in Dallas. “We better get prepared. We shouldn’t be shocked if all this does happen.”

Honestly, this kinda rules. There is something beautifully and distinctly American about just collectively deciding not to follow a rule until they have absolutely no choice but to just like, change it. Can we do targeting next?

NFL U. As you watch Aidan Hutchinson become a top-five pick while Ohio State doesn’t have a single defensive player even in the first round, remember that today is very clearly the exception, not the rule.

You also can do this with a lot of things – winning seasons, Heisman finalists, Big Ten titles, College Football Playoff appearances, etc.

But also, the past doesn’t mean shit unless Ohio State handles the present and the future, too. Michigan needs to be put back in its place.

KILL IT WITH FIRE. Speaking of Michigan, I saw these abominations appear on my Twitter feed yesterday, and if I have to see them then you do, too.

I’m not sure which helmet is more jarring, but it’s definitely some Twilight Zone shit that’s going to haunt the folds of my brain for longer than I’d like to admit.


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