Hart Drafted by Jags, Expansion & Realignment in the SLC
by, 04-27-2010 at 11:35 AM (1427 Views)
Larry Hart was [url=http://www.southland.org/ViewArticle.dbml?SPSID=90019&SPID=10812&temp_site=NO&DB_OEM_ID=18400&ATCLID=204935698]drafted[/url]in the fifth round by the Jacksonville Jaguars on Saturday, becoming the highest Central Arkansas football player to ever be selected.
A two-time Southland Conference Defensive Player of the Year, Hart was the only player in the conference selected and at that point, the fifth player from the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) taken. In addition to his conference accolades, Hart was a two-time All-American selection and will now join former Bears defensive end Jacob Ford (Tennessee Titans) and tight end/fullback Marquez Branson (Denver Broncos) on an NFL roster.
According to Hart, the Jaguars plan to leave him at defensive end, despite rumors of a potential switch to the outside linebacker position.
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Potentially lost in the mix this weekend was that Lamar athletic director Billy Tubbs was [url=http://www.beaumontenterprise.com/sports/local/deals_could_mean_bigger_things_for_lu_athletics.html]quoted in the Beaumont Enterprise[/url] as saying that his program's five year plan is to be in the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS).
The quote from Tubbs reads, ""Yes, we plan to do that, in a five-year program we would like be in the FBS, which is the Bowl Subdivision. That's where we aspire to be. As things are moving around, we want to position ourselves to have the possibility of upgrading our football program."
Lamar becomes the third SLC program to state in public that they are interested or in the process of moving to FBS, joining Texas State and UTSA. TXST is currently in the midst of [URL=http://www.collegesportingnews.com/entry.php?40-Drive-Stalled-Hardly.-TXST-Fueling-the-Engine]"The Drive"[/URL], an initiative they hope lifts their program to the FBS level while UTSA athletic director Lynn Hickey has made it clear the school will [URL=http://www.collegesportingnews.com/entry.php?31-UTSA-Throws-Curveball-Announces-FBS-Plan]skip the SLC with intentions on being FBS[/URL].
A fourth school, Sam Houston State, is in the middle of an evaluation that will review the school's standing at the FCS level, examine how the school can improve, what it needs to do and what would be needed if the school does look into FBS.
Conference realignment and expansion will impact the league at some point. SLC commissioner Tom Burnett may have said it best, when quoted in the same Beaumont Enterprise article in which Tubbs was quoted.
[quote]"I liken it to what someone told me, 'It's like what happens when an earthquake hits. How far are you from the epicenter?'" Southland commissioner Tom Burnett said. "If the Big Ten takes one team, then the quote experts say there will not be much of a ripple. If the Big Ten takes five teams, and another 10 teams make a move, the waves are a big bigger. It's too early to say."[/quote]
How much longer until the expansion and realignment chatter becomes deafening? It is a matter of those movers and shakers in the Big 10 and Pac-10 to decide that. Those will be the first dominoes to fall...
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We will be back later today with news from spring football, a major injury in the Southland and more!