Shotgun Spratling | USCfootball.com

Staying cool while summer football heats up . . . We're "Just Sayin' " here

Lots to talk about as we heat up hereabouts as college football becomes a 24/7/365 deal.

The hits just keep coming. The news never ends. At least it doesn't seem to in a week where USC hosted the Trojans at the beach for conditioning work and the Rising Stars Camp on campus.

We're "Just Sayin' " get used to it. College football has figured out that the NFL was right. You want the big bucks and the big TV media deals and the big salaries, you'd better be ready to go 24/7 for 365 days a year, which is where this seems to be going.

So good work for Clay Helton & Co. here. Team and togetherness took the edge over toughness a bit in the heat and that's the smart way to do it . . . for one day. Because if you thought Stanford and Wisconsin made it a tough physical finish in 2015, Alabama is waiting to say "Howdy" to start 2016. Which is where we'll start here.

*** Because they seem to be pretty serious about it down Tuscaloosa way when, as the great NFL talent guru Gil Brandt tweeted out the other day, Alabama's strength coach is paid more than 10 head coaches in the Mid-American Conference . . . Just Sayin'.

*** Yes, that's right. Bama's Scott Cochran just got a $105,000 raise to $525,000 a year to make 'em big and strong and tough and ready by Sept. 3. Sure, it'd be easy to use this to take a shot at the Tide -- or the SEC -- but as long as this is about competing, and it's within the rules, such as they are, you gotta' just tip your hat to them and be ready when the time comes in Texas . . . Just Sayin'.

*** Here's the problem with that take for any member of the Pac-12 now that we know that the media revenues for the SEC and Big Ten are simply about to swamp every single Pac-12 program. And it's only going to get worse, way worse than the $7 million advantage those schools had this past year . . . Just Sayin'.

*** For example, by the time USC gets the Coliseum redesign/renovation paid for with its aggressive marketing campaign for the private boxes -- let's say in 20 years or so -- USC will be as much as $300 million to $400 million behind projected revenues in programs in either of those leagues as they move to double the Pac-12's $25 million a year deal the league is stuck with . . . Just Sayin'.

*** And maybe this isn't the time to mention it but wouldn't that extra $300/$400 million over the next 20 years come in handy if you wanted to really do the Coliseum right? . . . Just Sayin'. 

*** And sure, we know the only big bucks anyone in the Pac-12 is getting right now goes to the more than $5 million paid each year to the league's top two administrators -- Commissioner Larry Scott and Networks president Lydia Murphy-Stephans, who may have to start figuring out how to justify those numbers . . . Just Sayin'.

*** But you'd think in some not-too-distant future moment of clarity, a couple of the league's presidents might inquire just what the heck is going on here? . . . Just Sayin'.

*** What is going on is that both the ACC and the Big 12 seem to have passed the Pac-12's $25.1 million in revenues per school -- with the Big 12 jumping from $24 million to more than $30 million and the ACC up to $27.6 million each . . . Just Sayin'.

*** Back to Bama. We know it's fashionable to bash the Louisiana DA for his silly statement on why he's passing on prosecuting the Alabama pair for gun and marijuana possession as well as having a stolen gun in the car -- that those guys were out working hard and perspiring when the rest of us were sitting in air-conditioned comfort. But what he really said was they were getting off for being football players and you have to hope Cam Robinson and Hootie Jones do not take that message to heart . . . Just Sayin;.

*** We can only hope Nick Saban's indefinite suspension of the pair without a specified game penalty with weekly urine tests, regular drug counseling, monthly mental health counseling and twice-weekly meetings with the Tuscaloosa police on gun safety and with each doing 20 hours of community service and Robinson 26 hours of ride-along with the police and Jones 21 days in a drug rehab program does not reinforce the message that they got away with it . . . Just Sayin'.

*** One more thing: We'll see those two in September. We're guessing in Tuscaloosa, playing in the opener is the very definition of "community service" . . . Just Sayin'.

*** Now for a different, and snarkily funny take as always on all of this, here's former LA Times national college football columnist Chris Dufresne tweeting how the Alabama pair were "protected by the Louisiana-Monroe doctrine" and the "Louisiana DA refuses to back down even after learning Alabama opener vs. USC is in air-conditioned AT&T Stadium" and then finally: "Louisiana DA says he does have 'sufficient evidence' to charge Jim Harbaugh" however. Nice work as always by @DufRankman . . . Just Sayin'. 

*** And while we're giving Clay good marks for going to the beach and recruiting a Top 10 class his first year and making some terrific coaching hires and changing the culture at USC, that's not the national judgment right now. Athlon Sports has Clay as the nation's No. 86 coach in its 1-128 rankings that start with Saban at the top and have Clay as the lowest-ranked Pac-12 coach and the fifth-lowest-ranked coach in all the Power Five conferences and lower than any coach USC faces including No. 66 Matt Wells at Utah State . . . Just Sayin'.

You can follow me on Twitter at @dweber3440 or email me at weber@uscfootball.com.

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