Remember Katherine Webb, AJ McCarron’s girlfriend who rose to fame when filthy ol’ Brent Musburger ogled her during the 2013 National Championship game? Well, in the early stages of 2014 there’s a new quarterback armpiece in charge, and her name is Lindsey Duke (Yes, that’s her Christian name – in other news “Amy Clemson” is scheduled to be the football ‘it girl’ of 2015). Duke is the girlfriend of projected top overall NFL draft pick, Blake Bortles, out of Central Florida and has been steadily gaining steam since the New Year. [embedgallery id= 380103]
This year, at least, everyone seems to be a “Dukie,” including UCF head coach George O’Leary – who said the following about the Queen of the Combine dominating Bortles in number of Google searches: “I would hope as a head coach that the numbers would be reversed, but obviously you haven’t seen his girlfriend. She deserves six million Googles,” the 67-year-old O'Leary told ESPN.
Duke dominated news at the Combine Wednesday, which admittedly isn’t the hardest thing to do considering NFL Network anchors doing wind-sprints counts as "news" at this thing. Nonetheless, Dan Patrick got Bortles to tell a story about NFL executives grilling him about Duke on his radio show. One NFL higher-up wanted to know whether or not Duke would be joining them for dinner during one of these "interviews":
On the other end of the Combine spectrum Wednesday was Johnny Manziel. The day began with a 62-year-old man and a 76-year-old man telling the world that Manziel is destined to become the NFL’s next blazing dumpster fire.
Former Eagles quarterback Ron Jaworski told 97.5 The Fanatic in Philly:
“Manziel may fall (in the draft). I’m not crazy about him, to be honest with you. I’ve only looked at five games. I wouldn’t take him in the first three rounds. That’s my opinion. It’s incomplete right now. But he has not done a whole lot to me.”
Jaworski was promptly tasered by ESPN executives for the comments.
Then former Cowboys and Oklahoma coach Barry Switzer dropped this thoughtful nugget about “Johnny Football” to CBS Sports Radio 920 AM in St. Louis:
“I’m gonna tell you. I said Johnny Manziel is … I don’t like his antics. I think he’s an arrogant little prick … I’ve said that and I’ll say it again. He’s a privileged kid, he’s embarrassed himself, he’s embarrassed his teammates, his program. He’s embarrassed his coach. And they’ll all have to defend him because they have to coach. I know that. I spent 40 years in the damn game so I know how it works.”
Soooooo, what we learned today - according to grumpy, old football minds: Lindsey Duke good. Johnny Football bad.
Follow Metro Boston sports editor and columnist Matt Burke on Twitter@BurkeMetroBOS