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Big 12 football notebook: TCU defensive end Devonte Fields suspended

TCU suspended defensive end Devonte Fields on Tuesday pending the results of a police investigation into whether he punched a former girlfriend in the head and threatened her with a gun while shouting, “I should blast you!”
by Berry Tramel Published: July 22, 2014

TCU suspended defensive end Devonte Fields on Tuesday pending the results of a police investigation into whether he punched a former girlfriend in the head and threatened her with a gun while shouting, “I should blast you!”

Fields was voted the Big 12’s preseason Defensive Player of the Year.

Officers said 20-year-old Haley Brown's right check was swollen, and she had a cut under her eye when they arrived at a Fort Worth home early Sunday. Police said no charges have been filed, and Fields has not been arrested. An emailed statement from TCU says the school doesn't tolerate harassment or misconduct by a student and that the allegations against Fields will be go through an internal discipline process while he is “separated” from the university.

COMMITTEE TALKS GAME LENGTH

Big 12 officiating director Walt Anderson said the rules committee in the offseason talked about possibly letting the clock run after a first down, as a way to speed up the game. The idea was tabled for a year. “I know it will come up at least for discussion this next year,” Anderson said.

Anderson said the SEC is using wireless technology this season and “that’s got a lot of promise in terms of being able to expedite the review process so that we don't have a referee have to run 60 or more yards back to the headset and then run back, which sometimes takes us a little longer than the players to do that.”

Anderson said game time is a concern and that the average length of games has decreased from around 3:30 a few years ago to 3:15 now. Anderson said the Big 12 average was 3:25, the longest among the major conferences. The shortest among the five leagues was 3:16.

STRONG BACKS OFF

New Texas coach Charlie Strong annoyed his fan base several weeks ago when he said the Longhorns weren’t national-championship caliber. Strong backed off that statement Tuesday.

“At the time I made that statement we were just in phase two,” Strong said. “I break our program down into five phases. The first phase is we started January where guys come and go to work right away ...it’s all about just building and reshaping the bodies. Phase two is spring practice. And then phase three is where we get back into summer condition. But we just completed phase two, and I said after looking at phase two, we're not going to go compete for a championship, not looking at phase two, because we had a lot of work to do.

“If you think about it, we were not a healthy football team at that time. But we still have some work to do. I can't say just how far off we are and that we will not know that until we go compete this fall. But we still have work to do. Now, we're not as bad as we used to be.”

SNYDER APPROACHES 75

Kansas State coach Bill Snyder turns 75 in October. Since Snyder was hired by KSU after the 1988 season, his fellow conference opponents have had a combined 48 head coaches. Does that make Snyder feel old?

“The age factor, I can't negotiate that,” Snyder said. “It is what it is. And I'm as old as time and that's not going to change. Probably the significant thing for me — and I think I've learned this a long time ago — when I was a young coach, started off in the high school level and moved to a lot of different places, and I was always one of those coaches that I wanted to be someplace else other than where I was.

“In other words, I wanted to continue to climb. So when I was a high school assistant, I wanted to be a head coach. When I was a head coach, I wanted to be a college assistant. When I was a college assistant, I wanted to be a head coach. So that went on for a considerable period of time. And I was half in/half out, so to speak. And consequently I was not a very good football coach at all, probably not a very good person.

“And I learned some time ago, probably 30 some‑odd years ago, that I needed to do it a little differently. And my decision was, simply put, that be where you are. And I chose to do that. And that allowed me to become better at things I was doing and never looked to move on. It wasn't significant to me. I valued where I was, where my family was and doing what we were doing, and that was kind of the approach that I've taken.”

DURANT DISSES DIGGS

Texas cornerback Quandre Diggs said he’s upset that Thunder superstar and Texas alum Kevin Durant followed him then unfollowed him on Twitter. "Thought we were UT boys,” Diggs said.

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by Berry Tramel
Columnist
Berry Tramel, a lifelong Oklahoman, sports fan and newspaper reader, joined The Oklahoman in 1991 and has served as beat writer, assistant sports editor, sports editor and columnist. Tramel grew up reading four daily newspapers — The Oklahoman,...
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