Peyton Manning is giving his alma mater $3 million.

Tennessee announced his contribution Friday night and said it will go to the football program and the Peyton Manning Scholarship endowment.

Manning graduated from Tennessee after the 1997 football season and was the No. 1 pick in the 1998 NFL draft. The scholarship has been around since Manning turned pro and is given to two first-year students in the school's Honors Program. With his gift, the school says the goal is to expand the scholarship to four students annually.

In addition to the scholarship expansion, the school said Gate 16 at Neyland Stadium will be renamed the Gus Manning Gate as part of Peyton Manning's donation.

Gus Manning has been a member of UT's athletic department for 64 years. He first joined the program as the sports information director in 1951 and has served multiple roles within the department. A new athletic dining hall on campus will also be named for Carmen and Deborah Tegano. Carmen is a long-time member of Tennessee's athletic department and current associate athletic director while Manning had Deborah as a professor at UT.

"Gus and Carmen both personify what it means to be a Vol for Life, and both have made the University of Tennessee a better place," Peyton Manning said in a school statement. "No one has served Tennessee and its athletics program better than Gus, and Carmen has also served this University with tremendous distinction.

"We have been fortunate to maintain a close friendship with Gus, Carmen, and Debbie Tegano since I left UT, and our sincere hope is that the decision to honor them in this way is reflective of the positive impact they continue to have on this great University."

Earlier this week, UCLA announced former quarterback and NFL Hall of Famer Troy Aikman gave $1 million for the school's strength and conditioning facility.

For more Tennessee news, visit VolQuest.com.

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Author: Nick Bromberg
Posted: April 25, 2015, 2:49 am

Tennessee's Von Pearson, left, pulls in a touchdown pass during the first half of the TaxSlayer Bowl NCAA college football game against Iowa, Friday, Jan. 2, 2015, in Jacksonville, Fla. (AP Photo/The Florida Times-Union, Bob Self)Tennessee wide receiver Von Pearson is a suspect in a rape case, the Knoxville Police Department said.

According to the Knoxville News Sentinel, the alleged rape occurred “between 3-4 a.m.” at an off-campus apartment and was reported “about 6 a.m. Friday." The alleged victim “identified Pearson as her attacker,” Knoxville Deputy Chief of Police Gary Holiday said.

No charges have been filed against Pearson, who has been suspended indefinitely by the program.

According to the Sentinel, six witnesses – including two UT football players – gave statements to KPD.

“Investigator Colin McLeod was called the University of Tennessee Medical Center about 6 a.m. to investigate a report of a forcible rape, according to the incident report.

During the initial investigation, KPD investigators took statements from the victim, several witnesses — five men and a woman — and alerted the Sexual Assault Center, according to Holliday.

Two UT players are listed among the six witnesses. Wide receiver Alton “Pig” Howard, 22, of Orlando, Fla., and defensive end Dimarya Mixon, 20, of Compton, Calif.”

Holiday said in a statement that the investigation is in its early stages and is ongoing.

The 23-year-old Pearson, joined the Vols program in 2014 after two seasons playing at the junior college level, has been working with the first team offense throughout the spring. He was second on the team with 38 catches and 393 receiving yards last season and led the Vols with five touchdown receptions.

The Vols’ spring game is scheduled for Saturday at Neyland Stadium.

For more Tennessee news, visit VolQuest.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 24, 2015, 8:41 pm

Call WR coach Pierre Ingram (bearinsider.com)A week after Cal recruiting coordinator and wide receivers coach Pierre Ingram was arrested in a prostitution sting, the University announced Friday that his contract will not be renewed.

“As you are aware, Assistant Football Coach Ingram was placed on paid administrative leave following his recent arrest for solicitation. We are not renewing his contract and he will no longer represent or act on behalf of this University in any capacity,” Cal Athletics said in a statement.

According to the San Jose Mercury News, Ingram, 30, was arrested on April 16 for allegedly “soliciting an undercover officer online.” Ingram, who was recently named the Bears’ passing game coordinator, showed up at a Motel 6 in Oakland and was arrested on “suspicion of misdemeanor solicitation of a lewd act.”

Ingram was one of five men arrested in the sting operation. He has a court date scheduled for next month, police said.

The Cal athletic department said in a statement that it became aware of the matter “prior to the spring game,” which was played on April 18.

Pierre Ingram’s attorney, Darryl Stallworth, released a statement on his client’s behalf saying that Ingram is “deeply sorry.”

Here is a statement from Pierre Ingram's attorney, Darryl Stallworth. #Cal pic.twitter.com/5TQzzXMyQs

— Mike Vernon (@M_Vernon) April 20, 2015

Ingram was entering his sixth season as an assistant under head coach Sonny Dykes, including three at Louisiana Tech. After spending the last two seasons as the Bears’ running backs coach, he was moved to wide receivers coach and passing game coordinator before spring practice began.

The Bears finished spring practice last week. 

For more Cal news, visit GoldenBearReport.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 24, 2015, 7:21 pm

The NCAA announced the findings of its investigation into Oklahoma State's football team and the biggest penalty the Cowboys received may be the four-year football ban of its Orange Pride program.

The investigation started after a series of articles from Sports Illustrated in the fall of 2013 about alleged NCAA violations within the program. The articles said there was a pay for play system set up, players were in a "weed circle," there was cheating and detailed the role of hostesses in the recruitment of athletes.

From the NCAA:

This case stemmed from a series of articles published about alleged NCAA violations. The university alerted the NCAA to the allegations and a cooperative investigation began. More than 50,000 emails and other documents were reviewed and nearly 90 interviews of current and former student-athletes, coaches, staff and boosters were conducted. The investigation determined that many of the allegations from the series of articles were unfounded; however, the panel concluded that the university violated its drug testing policy and committed recruiting violations.

The line about the allegations being unfounded is not new. In October, the NCAA and Oklahoma State released a joint statement saying the same thing.

The NCAA said that OSU didn't follow its own written policies for students who had positive drug tests and "the athletics director believed he had latitude in the application of the policy and deferred to the head football coach’s recommendation on whether to suspend student-athletes who failed a drug test. As a result, five football student-athletes competed in a total of seven games when they should have been withheld from competition."

The NCAA findings also said the Orange Pride program, an all-female group who hosts recruits during visits to the school, "engaged in impermissible hosting activiities" over a four year period. As a result, the football team is not allowed to utilize the program for four years.

In addition to the four-year ban, the program is on probation from Friday to April 23, 2016, fined $5,000 and an additional $3,500 for the seven ineligible player games (at $500 per player). The university will self-impose a limit of 30 official visits per year and caches can participate in one fewer off-campus "evaluation" for the next year. The school will also self impose a 10 day reduction in evaulation days in the fall and spring over the next year.

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Author: Nick Bromberg
Posted: April 24, 2015, 4:24 pm

Remember back in January when Ohio State quarterback Cardale Jones visited a kid in the hospital and beat him 98-35 in NCAA Football? Well, now that kid – Jared Foley – wants a rematch, but in a different game.

Hey cardale it's Jared and I'm doing we'll wanted to know if I can get that rematch. @CJ12_ pic.twitter.com/6Ggsj2iaS3

— jared foley (@bearfoley) April 23, 2015

@bearfoley rematch? You sure? May I remind you....... 98-35, lucky that wasn't on PS4, I really took it easy on you bro

— Cardale Jones (@CJ12_) April 23, 2015

@MakeHistory_JD @bearfoley bro, you only can say rematch when the game was close, I destroyed him man, go practice Jared

— Cardale Jones (@CJ12_) April 23, 2015

Instead of NCAA Football, Jared thinks he can get the best of Jones in NHL 15.

@CJ12_ hey let me know when I can get it and maybe I'll also play you in somthing I can beat you in

— jared foley (@bearfoley) April 23, 2015

@bearfoley what game you THINK you can beat me in man

— Cardale Jones (@CJ12_) April 23, 2015

@CJ12_ NHL 15

— jared foley (@bearfoley) April 24, 2015

Though he was hesitant at first, Jones took him up on the challenge – with a caveat. If Jones loses, Jared has to pay for the game.

@bearfoley NHL 15😰 bro, I'm black, I don't play NHL 😂

— Cardale Jones (@CJ12_) April 24, 2015

@CJ12_ I'm good at that game tho

— jared foley (@bearfoley) April 24, 2015

@bearfoley give me a couple weeks, I'm about to go buy it now, if I lose you have to reimburse me for buying NHL 😂

— Cardale Jones (@CJ12_) April 24, 2015

@CJ12_ ok go buy it and will see who wins

— jared foley (@bearfoley) April 24, 2015

@bearfoley ok, I'll let you know when I'm ready

— Cardale Jones (@CJ12_) April 24, 2015

We’re anxious to see how this rematch plays out.

For more Ohio State news, visit BuckeyeGrove.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 24, 2015, 4:21 pm

Oh Jim Harbaugh, your Twitter game is superb.

After the drama surrounding satellite football camps this week, the Michigan coach took to Twitter on Friday morning to post a "letter" to coaches of all rival schools. Behold its wonder.

As a Collegial gesture we invite Coaches from Every College to be involved in our football camp. #Compete #ExposureU pic.twitter.com/lMM4ZiSLx2

— Coach Harbaugh (@CoachJim4UM) April 24, 2015

Michigan is hosting nine camps in seven states this summer.

The best thing about this letter is that if it wasn't written by Harbaugh, he had a ghostwriter who really knows his style. The all-caps spellings of "UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN FOOTBALL CAMP," "AMERICA" and the random capitalizing of in-sentence words are peak Harbaugh.

Hopefully this is taken as nothing more than a joke by SEC coaches who aren't too fond of the loophole allowing other coaches to coach at camps further than 50 miles away from their campuses (SEC coaches are banned from doing so by the conference). Or if it isn't, one or two should show up just to prove that they were paying attention to Harbaugh's invite. That may be even funnier.

For more Michigan news, visit TheWolverine.com.

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Author: Nick Bromberg
Posted: April 24, 2015, 3:30 pm

Arizona State head coach Todd Graham during the second half of an NCAA college football game against Arizona, Friday, Nov. 28, 2014, in Tucson, Ariz. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)Though Arizona State coach Todd Graham thinks progress has been made in college football with the implementation of the College Football Playoff, he still says changes need to be made with the way teams schedule.

Graham says scheduling should be “equal for everybody,” with all Power Five teams playing the same amount of conference games instead of scheduling mediocre teams to put up easy wins.

“Everybody should play nine conference games,” Graham said per AZfamily.com. “Why nine games instead of eight? Because you play one more conference game that your fans want to see instead of scheduling a team that no one wants to see because you’re scheduling wins and don’t want to be out of the four-team playoff.”

The Pac-12, Arizona State’s conference, and the Big 12 already play nine-game conference schedules and the Big Ten will begin doing so in 2016. However, the ACC and SEC have relented and will continue with an eight-game conference schedule moving forward, but each team must schedule a non-conference game against another Power Five opponent.

Graham said the fans want to see more interesting matchups instead of the usual early season cupcakes.

“We need to consider what the fans want,” Graham said. “Fans don’t want to see you schedule four easy wins, then get two conference wins to get into a bowl game. That’s un-American.”

Arizona State opens up the upcoming season with a neutral site game against Texas A&M and has games locked in with Texas Tech, Michigan State, BYU and LSU in the future. Still, Graham’s team has non-conference games scheduled with Cal Poly and New Mexico this season, Northern Arizona and UTSA in 2016 and New Mexico State in 2017.

Those aren’t exactly juggernauts, but Graham’s point about all Power Five teams playing nine conference games certainly makes sense. Graham has some other ideas, too, including expanding the playoff to eight teams.

"In the future, I would love to see us expand to an eight-team playoff and keep the major bowls intact," Graham said. "Every conference champion gets an automatic bid. You'd have five automatic bids and three at-large.”

Graham thinks the playoff will expand and will do so “in the near future.”

For more Arizona State news, visit ASUDevils.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 24, 2015, 2:44 pm

Former Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston was asked by ACC Digital Network to re-enact a memorable scene from Remember the Titans, so Winston put on his best Coach Boone impression for the cameras.

He’s not exactly Denzel Washington, but Winston did a pretty good job bringing out the intensity of Washington’s famous locker room speech.

For comparison, he’s the scene from the movie.

Cornerback P.J. Williams, Winston’s former teammate at FSU, was brought in for another reenactment, but Winston does most of the work.

That one wasn’t quite as impressive.

Both players are preparing for next week’s NFL draft; maybe they can pursue a career in film after their playing days come to an end.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 24, 2015, 12:15 am

Michigan State unveiled new Nike Mach Speed uniforms for the 2015 season on Thursday. The new uniforms are an update to the Spartans’ classic green and white look, but also included a brand new alternate home jersey.

Ed Davis, Jack Allen, Shilique Calhoun & Connor Cook model MSU’s new Nike uniforms (Nike Mach Speed) @usnikefootball pic.twitter.com/PfppHJDlKx

— Spartan Football (@MSU_Football) April 23, 2015

Updated look for Michigan State: New alternate uni inspired by bronze Spartan shields & the phalanx battle formation pic.twitter.com/tnfGvkREvg

— Heidi Burgett (@heidiburgett) April 23, 2015

According to a release from MSU and Nike, the new uniforms include “lightweight fabric innovation built for maximum speed, ventilation and comfort” and “three distinct woven mesh fabrics for optimal thermoregulation.” 

At home, the Spartans will wear green jerseys with the option of either matching green pants, or white pants. Conversely, the team will go with white jerseys and green pants on the road. 

Front view of home jersey (Nike Mach Speed) @usnikefootball #Spartans pic.twitter.com/SMxgxKXBuv

— Spartan Football (@MSU_Football) April 23, 2015

Front and shoulder view of road jersey (Nike Mach Speed) @usnikefootball #Spartans pic.twitter.com/2RTvbqo9SX

— Spartan Football (@MSU_Football) April 23, 2015

Connor Cook models MSU’s all white road uniform (Nike Mach Speed) @usnikefootball #Spartans pic.twitter.com/NvkxnW6yh2

— Spartan Football (@MSU_Football) April 23, 2015

Jack Allen models MSU’s all green home uniform (Nike Mach Speed) @usnikefootball #Spartans pic.twitter.com/TLGXna8kmc

— Spartan Football (@MSU_Football) April 23, 2015

An alternate home jersey and helmet present a new option for the Spartans. 

Shilique Calhoun models MSU’s alternate home jersey (Nike Mach Speed) @usnikefootball #Spartans pic.twitter.com/Wb8iW7pXO9

— Spartan Football (@MSU_Football) April 23, 2015

Michigan State’s alternate bronze helmet (oxidized metal finish) @usnikefootball #Spartans pic.twitter.com/mamsL2zrxq

— Spartan Football (@MSU_Football) April 23, 2015

The team's classic green helmet also has a new "anodized aluminum finish."

Michigan State’s new green helmet (anodized aluminum finish) @usnikefootball #Spartans pic.twitter.com/TwoGGPNujt

— Spartan Football (@MSU_Football) April 23, 2015

You can take a closer look at the Spartans' new uniforms at Nike's website or in the video below. 

VIDEO - Michigan State Football releases New Nike Uniform Design for Fall 2015 #BTN2Go http://t.co/cwJhWiUYKb

— Spartan Football (@MSU_Football) April 23, 2015

For more Michigan State news, visit SpartanMag.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 23, 2015, 10:50 pm

FILE - In this Dec. 2, 2014, file photo, UAB offensive tackle Steve Pickern hugs UAB supporter Justin Craft after UAB President Ray Watts announced the shut down of the UAB football program in Birmingham, Ala. (AP Photo/AL.com, Joe Songer, File)UAB said it made the decision to end its football program (along with rifle and bowling) in November because it could not afford to continue supporting the program. However, an independent economic analysis firm released a study Thursday that claims football actually made money for the university and the decision to terminate the three sports was "ill-advised from a net cash-flow perspective."

"We find that the three sports in question did not cost the university anywhere near the $3.75 million indicated on UAB's accounting statements," Dan Rascher and Andy Schwarz, partners of Bay Area firm OSKR, wrote. "Instead, after making the sort of adjustments suggested by the economics literature, we conclude that the three sports were effectively break-even to slightly positive. Football and bowling showed a modest positive return for 2013-14, the last year for which complete data was available. Rifle showed a deficit, but the three-sport balance was positive to the tune of $75,000." 

According to ESPN, Rascher and Schwarz wrote in their study that athletic scholarships “cost UAB 65 percent less than their listed prices” because “any tuition number assigned to that scholarship is not a hard cost to the university.” 

They also wrote that there would even be enough money to cover cost-of-attendance scholarships for UAB athletes, especially with the College Football Playoff bringing in more money to the sport. 

"We conclude that going forward, anticipated improvement in ticket sales from 2013-14 levels and new College Football Playoff revenues will outpace new expenses from Cost of Attendance stipends and unlimited food allowances," they wrote. "Once these new revenues and expenses kick in, we anticipate the aggregate annual surplus from football, bowling, and rifle would exceed $500,000, even without including the anticipated but hard-to-quantify benefits to admissions and enrollment, donations, and media exposure."

UAB’s athletics task force originally hired OSKR on March 7 to complete a report about the school’s finances. However, the contract between the university and OSKR was canceled a week later because UAB was worried that OSKR’s report could be biased after reading articles written by Schwarz that were “critical of UAB’s decision to end football,” according to CBS Sports.

OSKR responded to the allegations of bias in its report.

"We stand behind our numerical work as honest, sincere, conservative, and certainly not biased in favor of maintaining the football, bowling, and/or rifle programs. It's just that the unbiased numbers happen to support that outcome."

Rascher and Schwarz were also involved in the Ed O’Bannon v. NCAA trial as consultants for the plaintiffs. According to ESPN, Rascher “challenged the accounting methods used by the NCAA to assert that most athletic departments in major conferences lose money.” 

Even after the contract broke off, OSKR continued and its own accounting methods to complete its 156-page UAB report, which was “calculated to produce conservative estimates.”

Since breaking off its contract with OSKR, UAB’s athletics task force enlisted College Sports Solutions (CSS) to complete a report by May 15.

UAB spokesman Jim Bakken said in a statement to CBS Sports Thursday that the decision to terminate the three sports was “based on the best information available at the time, but a thorough review of the data used to make that decision is important to the UAB community. UAB leadership looks forward to revisiting the decision with community input after the completion of the College Sports Solutions review, due May 15. It is the intention of UAB leadership to make the most informed decision possible based on an objective review of actual numbers." 

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 23, 2015, 9:09 pm

(Brace Hemmelgarn - USA TODAY Sports)Wisconsin athletic director Barry Alvarez said he only expects 10,000 to 20,000 fans to attend the Badgers spring game on Saturday.

Other Big Ten schools like Ohio State (99,391), Nebraska (76,000), Penn State (68,000) and Michigan (60,000) brought in huge crowds this spring. Why won’t Wisconsin fans pack Camp Randall to see a team that has played in the conference title game in three of the past four seasons?

According to Alvarez, they might just have better things to do.

“I just think there’s too many things to do in Madison that we have not – through a number of coaches – been able to generate that type of interest,” Alvarez said per the Wisconsin State Journal.

Only the south and east sections of the stadium will be open for seating Saturday for Paul Chryst’s debut as head coach. The past four spring games have averaged between 8,000 and 12,000 at Camp Randall, but as long as the stadium is filled when the fall rolls around, the program doesn’t have anything to worry about.

After all, spring games are nothing but glorified practices anyway.

For more Wisconsin news, visit BadgerBlitz.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 23, 2015, 6:38 pm

NCAA President Mark Emmert answers questions during a news conference at the Men's Final Four college basketball tournament Thursday, April 2, 2015, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)NCAA president Mark Emmert spoke with reporters Thursday at an Associated Press Sports Editors meeting in New York City and touched on some of the issues facing collegiate athletics.

Emmert discussed the Big Ten’s recent proposal for freshmen ineligibility in football and men’s basketball, saying the NCAA has been “heavily involved” in the conversation.

“I’m really pleased that the Big Ten presidents want to at least have the conversation about it, because it’s worth having,” Emmert said according to USA Today.

Emmert said the idea has "all kinds of problems" and is "highly controversial," but is "worthy of debate."

Emmert especially didn't seem to be on board with freshmen ineligibility if its main purpose is to curb the number of college basketball recruits who declare for the NBA after one year in school.

“The real question we need to address is, are students sufficiently serious about being students as well as athletes? And are they sufficiently prepared to be successful as a student as well as an athlete?” Emmert said.

Emmert, while pointing out the NCAA’s minimum grade-point average increasing from 2.0 to 2.3 next year, said one potential benefit for freshmen ineligibility would be to help student-athletes who may be behind academically compared to their peers.

Regarding an issue that solely pertains to college football, Emmert said coaches participating in satellite camps is “on the top” of the NCAA oversight committee’s list of issues to look at. 

Big Ten coaches – particularly Penn State’s James Franklin and Michigan’s Jim Harbaugh – are scheduled to participate as guest coaches at football camps across the country this summer. Franklin and his staff were at camps in Florida and Georgia last summer and are scheduled to attend five more this year. Meanwhile, Michigan’s staff is attending nine camps in seven states in June.

The SEC, which outlaws such a practice, wants to see it banned. ACC commissioner John Swofford voiced a similar sentiment Thursday.

"Whether they throw the gates open or whether they close it down will be their call," Emmert said per the Associated Press. "Having different rules in different places, that's a de facto decision. If one or more conferences is doing it then it seem inevitable that all the conferences will say, 'Yes, let's do it.' So that's a decision by default. If that's where they (the oversight committee) want to be, fine but at least make a conscious decision."

Additionally, Emmert was again asked about the NCAA’s handling of the scandal at Penn State in which the football program was hit with scholarship reductions, a bowl ban, vacated wins and the school was fined $60 million. Emmert said Thursday that the sanctions were “right and appropriate,” even though 112 of the program’s wins were restored and the scholarship reductions and bowl ban were lifted.

Emmert did concede, however, that the NCAA could have “handled the communication differently.”

“I think communication could have been handled a lot better,” Emmert said. “Certainly I could have done that a lot better. But the reality is it was a very, very difficult circumstance for the university. I think the executive committee wound up in the right place.”

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 23, 2015, 6:05 pm

We now have it on record from a former Alabama player that Ohio State quarterback Braxton Miller has been to Tuscaloosa recently. Which totally means he's going to be Alabama's quarterback in 2015, right?

No.

From GulfLive.com:

Former Alabama star Jalston Fowler, who is preparing for the NFL draft, told The Opening Kickoff on WNSP-FM 105.5 on Thursday morning the Buckeye quarterback visited this past season.

"Yeah, he actually came down," Fowler said. "He and Trey DePriest are best friends. They have been best friends since they were small kids up in Ohio. He and Trey DePriest are boys. I only saw him down here once. He came down to hang out with Trey. He came over to the apartment. It was some time this year."

This certainly adds a bit of context to the mentions of Alabama and Miller in the same sentence, doesn't it? Earlier in the week, radio host Paul Finebaum said a source had told him there was a chance Miller would transfer to Alabama. Another sportswriter tweeted Wednesday that Miller had been to Alabama "three times."

Miller and DePriest grew up near each other in Ohio. While Miller went to Wayne High School, DePriest went to Springfield. After Finebaum's comments went public Tuesday, Alabama coach Nick Saban said he wasn't going to talk about players on other teams when asked about Miller, though he didn't rule out a graduate transfer joining the team.

If Miller graduates in the summer, he could transfer as a graduate transfer and play immediately in 2015. However, as we said Tuesday, there have been no direct indications he's considering the option, which wouldn't give him much preseason prep time with a new team.

(H/T CBS Sports)

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Author: Nick Bromberg
Posted: April 23, 2015, 5:08 pm

Virginia quarterback Matt Johns (15) makes a pass during the first half of an NCAA college football game in Charlottesville, Va., Saturday, Oct. 4, 2014. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)Greyson Lambert started nine games for Virginia last season, but has fallen to second-string at quarterback at the conclusion of spring practice.

On the program’s post-spring depth chart, which was released Thursday, junior Matt Johns was listed ahead of Lambert as the Cavaliers’ starting quarterback.

“Matt did the best job,” UVA head coach Mike London said per the Richmond Times-Dispatch. “He was most productive. He was most efficient. It wasn’t close.”

Johns and Lambert, a fellow junior, split first-team reps for most of the spring. The competition will continue into the fall, but Johns has a leg up in the battle for now.”

“It’s definitely a fluid situation. This reflects if we were playing a game tomorrow, and we’re not,” offensive coordinator Steve Fairchild said.

Johns appeared in every game for the Cavs last season and made three starts after Lambert went down with an injury. For the season, he threw for 1,109 yards, eight touchdowns and five interceptions while completing 55 percent of his passes. Lambert completed 154-of-336 passes (46 percent) for 1,972 yards, 10 touchdowns and 11 interceptions.

Fairchild said that when evaluating overall performance in the spring, Johns “graded out slightly higher” than Lambert, who is “disappointed” he fell on the depth chart.

Elsewhere on the offense, junior Taquan Mizzell and redshirt sophomore Daniel Hamm were listed as co-starters at running back. The 5-foot-10, 190-pound Mizzell ran for 280 yards and two touchdowns last season. Hamm, who is also listed at 5-foot-10 and 190 pounds, ran for 75 yards and touchdown in 2014.

London also announced that senior wide receiver Dominique Terrell asked for and was granted his release from the program. Terrell combined for 60 catches for 641 yards and a touchdown from 2011-2013. He sat out the 2014 season with an injury.

For more Virginia news, visit CavsCorner.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 23, 2015, 5:02 pm

Just like the SEC, the ACC supports a ban on satellite camps. However, if there isn't a universal rule banning FBS coaches from participating in the camps, ACC commissioner John Swofford said his conference could reconsider its stance if there's no rule.

From ESPN:

"Right now we intend to keep our conference agreement [with the SEC] as is and push for a national rule that prohibits it," Swofford told ESPN.com on Thursday. "We just don't feel like it's a healthy part of the recruiting process in college football. We may have to ultimately reconsider it if the rules continue to allow it, because we're not going to put ourselves at a competitive disadvantage in recruiting if we were to feel like we were disadvantaged, but our primary purpose right now is to try to gain support for a national rule that prohibits it."

The NCAA prohibits coaches from hosting camps more than 50 miles from their school's campus. However, they can guest-coach at camps. The SEC prevents its coaches from using the loophole while other conferences like the Big Ten do not. The SEC would like a ban on the loophole to become a national regulation.

Penn State held a camp in conjunction with Georgia State last year and is doing so again this year. Nebraska recently scheduled one with the Panthers for 2015 and Michigan's staff is attending nine camps in seven states.

Swofford's stance is very similar to the one of Ohio State coach Urban Meyer, who told Yahoo Sports' Pat Forde that “I think that should be outlawed,” and then  “If it helps us, we’ll do it. And I think we might try one this year.”

According to ESPN, Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby and the chairman of the NCAA's oversight committee for football, the satellite camp rule is something the committee will take a look at.

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Author: Nick Bromberg
Posted: April 23, 2015, 4:37 pm

Jan 1, 2015; Pasadena, CA, USA; General view of the 2015 Rose Bowl college football game between the Florida State Seminoles and the Oregon Ducks at Rose Bowl. Oregon defeated Florida State 59-20. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY SportsThe Rose Bowl won’t put itself in the running to host the 2020 College Football Playoff title game.

According to the Los Angeles Times, the Tournament of Roses executive board looked at the “feasibility” of hosting the game, but ultimately decided against it.

“We would love to host a national championship game here,” Rose Bowl executive director William Flinn told the Times. “But we have to make sure it works for everybody.”

The College Football Playoff will award the title game designation for the 2018, 2019, and 2020 games this year. The Rose Bowl hosted the BCS title game four times between 1998 and 2013, but with the new CFP bidding process, it would have to stack up against other cities (with newer stadiums) for the chance to host the national championship.

According to the Times, host cities have to “underwrite the bid,” a cost that could range from $13 to $20 million.

“We’re not going to put a bid out on a hope and a prayer,” Flinn said.

The first three CFP title game locations were awarded to Arlington, Texas, Glendale, Ariz., and Tampa, Fla. According to the Times, those cities “must guarantee 10,000 hotel rooms and provide other perks, such as VIP transportation and parties.” The Tournament of Roses, a nonprofit organization, is “not compatible with the bid requirements,” Flinn said.

However, Flinn hopes the Rose Bowl could make it work in the future. To do so, conversations have taken place with officials in Pasadena and Los Angeles to make a “unified bid.”

As it currently stands with the College Football Playoff, the Rose Bowl hosts a national semifinal game every three seasons. Last year the Rose Bowl played host to the semifinal game between Florida State and Oregon. In the off years, the Rose Bowl will host a bowl matchup between the Pac-12 and Big Ten champions (unless a champion makes the four-team playoff).

The Rose Bowl’s next semifinal game will take place on Jan. 1, 2018. 

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 23, 2015, 4:02 pm

Ole Miss coach Hugh Freeze has a novel idea for a spring game format.

In an interview with the A to Z Show on ESPN Radio Nashville, Freeze said he'd love it if teams could scrimmage other teams during spring games. He said he feels his team doesn't gain as much from the traditional intra-squad scrimmage spring game format than it would with just another practice.

"I’ve been publicly saying I’m not a fan of the traditional spring game that we’re currently doing, Freeze said in his interview Monday. The kids want to divide up, the fans want you to divide up and really — I’m not sure how much we get out of it. I know we don’t get as much out of it if we were to just have another practice against each other but that’s not what everyone wants to see, so I kind of give in to that. I would love to see us be able to scrimmage another team and that way you can go ones on ones, twos on twos, threes on threes, really get something out of it and maybe even adopt a charity. Each team does that whether it’s a 1-AA opponent or a local opponent that you don’t play in the regular season. I think there would be a lot of interest in that. I wish we could do something like that."

You can listen to the entire interview here.

We like the idea a lot, even if teams were playing lower-level opponents. There's little sacred about the spring game tradition that needs to be saved and it's easy to see how fan interest would spike if teams weren't simply playing against themselves. And if we can dream a little bit, imagine if Texas and Texas A&M, Missouri and Kansas or any other longtime but currently not-being-played rivalry was reignited for a spring game? College football would become an even-bigger April topic in those areas.

Freeze said he would bring up the idea at the SEC's spring meetings in Destin, Fla. Current NCAA spring practice rules limit teams to 15 practices. Eight of those can be live-contact and three of the live-contact practices can include over 50 percent contact, usually in the form of an intra-squad scrimmage.

"I’m going to bring it up in our meetings in Destin and feel out how our coaches would feel about it and the conference would have to make the proposal," Freeze said. "And hopefully we can make that and I think it’d be a really fun event for everybody and at the same time we could give back because of all we’ve been blessed in this sport to have."

(H/T Jackson Clarion-Ledger)

For more Ole Miss news, visit RebelGrove.com.

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Author: Nick Bromberg
Posted: April 23, 2015, 3:32 pm

Nov 8, 2014; Boston, MA, USA; Boston College Eagles quarterback Darius Wade (4) pass the ball during the second half against the Louisville Cardinals at Alumni Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY SportsBoston College head coach Steve Addazio named his starting quarterback on Wednesday… sort of.

Addazio, who is entering his third season with the program, said on Wednesday’s ACC teleconference that Darius Wade emerged from spring practice atop the depth chart, but that’s not set in stone.

“You’re always going to let competition continue,” Addazio said, per the Boston Globe. “I never close the door on anything, on any position. But certainly coming out of the spring, Darius was the starter coming out of the spring.”

Wade, a 6-foot, 201-pound sophomore from Middletown, Del., will continue to compete with sophomore Troy Flutie (the nephew of BC great Doug Flutie) and true freshman Elijah Robinson during preseason camp. But for now, Wade is the top dog.

“Darius right now is taking the starting role with this football team at the quarterback position,” Addazio said. “He was the starter coming out of spring practice, and then of course we still have the whole summer ahead of us with Troy working hard and Elijah and (incoming freshman) Jeff Smith coming here in July.”

Wade was an early enrollee last January and saw a bit of game action behind Tyler Murphy for the Eagles last season, completing 3-of-8 passes for 23 yards and rushing for 12 yards on two attempts. With Murphy out of the picture due to graduation, Wade has an advantage in terms of experience compared to the rest of the position group.

“He’s starting to get a good handle on the offense. He throws the ball extremely well. He’s very deceptive,” Addazio said of Wade. “He has outstanding quickness and athletic ability. As spring wore on, he really started to make great plays and manage the offense properly. We’re excited about Darius.’’

Boston College has gone 7-6 in Addazio’s first two seasons leading the program. The Eagles open their 2015 season at home against Maine on Sept. 5.

For more Boston College news, visit EagleAction.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 23, 2015, 2:05 pm

Pitt has found its new athletic director.

According to ESPN, the school is planning to hire Utah State athletic director Scott Barnes.

Barnes has been with Utah State since 2008 and the football team has made a drastic turnaround under his watch. After Gary Anderen was hired in 2009, the team has gone 45-33. Four seasons were with Andersen and two with current coach Matt Wells. Before Andrsen went 7-6 in 2011, the last time Utah State finished above .500 in a season was in 1997, when the team was coached by John L. Smith.

He's also served as the chairman of the NCAA Men's Basketball committee.

One of the biggest priorities, at least for a segment of the Pitt fanbase, once Barnes starts his tenure at Pitt will be the possible continuation of the Backyard Brawl rivalry series with West Virginia. Last week, new West Virginia athletic director Shane Lyons said the possibility of renewing the series existed.

Wednesday, new Pitt coach Pat Narduzzi also expressed a willingness to play the Mountaineers again. Narduzzi, Michigan State's former defensive coordinator, was hired to replace Paul Chryst after Chryst left for Wisconsin (to replace Andersen, who went to Oregon State).

"I did read those articles on the West Virginia game, and obviously, the Backyard Brawl is something that I've grown up with," Narduzzi said during an ACC teleconference. "I think that's something the new athletic director here will have to answer that, and I'm sure we'll have that conversation when he gets here and also with Chancellor Gallagher as well on campus here.

"Obviously, you love to have those rivalries, and West Virginia is a great team in a great conference.  We want to play the best.  So we're always going to schedule some of the best opponents we can and really embrace future and past rivalries."

Pitt and West Virginia haven't played each other in football since 2011.

For more Pitt news, visit Panther-Lair.com.

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Nick Bromberg is the assistant editor of Dr. Saturday on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at nickbromberg@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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Author: Nick Bromberg
Posted: April 23, 2015, 2:03 pm

Clemson coach Dabo Swinney said Wednesday that while cost of attendance scholarships are a good thing, they're also a nightmare. Why? Because of the possible discrepancies in the additional stipends from school to school.

"Oh, there's no question. I mean, it's a nightmare," Swinney said Wednesday during an ACC teleconference. "I mean, I just think that the intent is good because I think we're finally modernizing the scholarship to reflect 2015, and there's a lot of positives that are coming about, even last year, being able to actually feed our guys like we need to be able to feed them. I think that was a positive. They tried the stipend thing. It didn't go through. So basically this is the way that they're getting that done, but there's some unintended consequences, and there's no question it's not a level playing field, and it is going to be the No.1 topic at all the coaches' meetings because it's not good.

"I think, again, the intent is good, but for one school to be able to pay $3,000 or $4,000 more than another school, then at the end of the day, guys are going to make decisions for the wrong reasons, and it shouldn't be that way.  I don't like where we are right now. We are where we are, but I think that there has to be a better solution somewhere down the road, and I think eventually we're going to get there. But it is where it is right now, and it's going to be a factor in the recruiting process, there's no question."

One of the first priorities after the Power Five conferences were granted the ability to make their own rules was to institute cost of attendance stipends into athletic scholarships. The extra money can help athletes with the expenses that come with being a college student.

“The way we’ve done it, where there could be tremendous difference in what we give as opposed to another school is able to give, we’ve never done anything like that in college football before,” Virginia Tech coach Frank Beamer said during the teleconference.

Need an example of the possible discrepancies? According to the Charleston Post and Courier, Clemson athletic director Dan Radakovich has estimated his school will need an extra $925,000 for cost of attendance stipends derived off the school's $3,608 "other expenses fee." Penn State's miscellaneous expenses figure is nearly $4,800. Over four years, it could be a difference of over $4,500.

Is it a figure enough to influence a recruit's decision? College football coaches apparently think it is. As we said back in March, we wonder if it'd be feasible for an independent agency to calculate the stipends. That way schools wouldn't have the opportunity to inflate their other expenses column to try to match or outflank other schools.

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Author: Nick Bromberg
Posted: April 23, 2015, 1:01 pm

In February, BYU athletic director Tom Holmoe said he wanted his school to be playing in a Power Five conference in the "near future." His football coach, Bronco Mendenhall agrees, and even put a timeline on what the near future is.

Mendenhall told KSL.com in a wide-ranging interview that the school needs to be in a Power Five conference in three years.

"When I speak in absolutes," Mendenhall said, "I know that doesn't work very well for expectations, because then that just means they're going to be met or not. But at some point, inclusion has to happen.

"I hate to be pinned down, but if someone were to force me, I'd say three years – it has to happen within three. Could it go longer than that? Yes, it could. Is it desirable, to me, to go longer than that? That answer is no."

Getting into a Power Five conference is easier said than done. And Mendenhall knows it, which is why he (and Holmoe) are strongly advocating for Power Five inclusion at every opportunity. While you could say it seems desperate, the Cougars are clearly wanting everyone to know that they're ready and willing to be a part of the next (inevitable?) round of conference realignment.

After Mendenhall's comments about moving to a Power Five conference in June, the Big 12 said it wasn't looking to expand.

And heck, the campaigning may already be paying off. The school has been added by the ACC and SEC as a "Power Five" opponent for non-conference scheduling purposes, an arrangement that's already paying off. The Cougars have home and home series set with Missouri and Mississippi State as well as Virginia.

For more BYU news, visit CougarNation.com.

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Nick Bromberg is the assistant editor of Dr. Saturday on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at nickbromberg@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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Author: Nick Bromberg
Posted: April 22, 2015, 9:39 pm

FILE - In this Feb. 21, 2015, file photo, Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston runs a drill at the NFL football scouting combine in Indianapolis. While 26 draft-eligible players have accepted invitations from the NFL to attend the proceedings later this month, Winston and Marcus Mariota are not among them. The two most recent Heisman Trophy winners and highest-profile players in this year's crop have opted to stay home with their families for the April 30-May 2 draft. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez, File)Former Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston says he was “hooked up” with free food at a Publix in Tallahassee last April, leading to his infamous citation for shoplifting crab legs. Publix says that isn’t true.

A spokesperson from the supermarket chain told USA Today that the company’s investigation last year concluded that an employee did not give merchandise to Winston.

“When we conducted the original investigation with the store associates and management both, we found no information that would corroborate the story that there was any arrangement for Jameis or any other FSU athlete to get any product for free,” Maria Brous, Publix’s director of media and community relations, told USA Today.

Winston, who was cited for stealing $32 worth of crab legs, was cited by the Leon County Sheriff’s Office and was forced to complete 20 hours of community service. He was also suspended from FSU’s baseball team for three games.

After news of the incident emerged, Winston released a statement through FSU that said “went to the supermarket with the intent to purchase dinner but made a terrible mistake.”

“In a moment of youthful ignorance, I walked out of the store without paying for one of my items,” Winston’s statement read in part. “I make no excuses for my actions and will learn and grow from this unfortunate situation.”

Winston told police that he forgot to pay, but on ESPN’s Draft Academy, he told Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh (in a segment that was filmed in February) that a Publix employee previously “hooked us up” with a cake for a friend’s birthday, so he did the same thing with the crab legs.

"We met a dude that worked inside Publix and he said, 'Hey, anytime you come in here, I got you.' So that day, we just walked out and he hooked us up with that,” Winston said. “And when I went to get crab legs, I did the same thing and he just gave them to me and I walked out. And someone from inside the store had told the security that I didn’t pay for them and that’s how the whole thing started.”

Brous said that store associates and “the entire management team” of that Publix were interviewed and asked “directly” if any of them had an arrangement with Winston.

“There was no information that would lead us to believe that any of our associates were involved in giving away product,” Brous said.

Brous said the company sent a letter to Florida State on May 19 to inform the school of the investigation.

If someone from the supermarket was giving Winston free merchandise, it could be an NCAA violation. In a statement, Florida State athletic director Stan Wilcox said the school was not aware of the alleged arrangement Winston described and would work with the NCAA to see if a violation occurred.

“We have become aware of statements made by Jameis Winston during a recent interview with Jim Harbaugh describing the circumstances of his alleged receipt of food from a local grocery store,” Wilcox’s statement said. “The details disclosed by Winston in that interview were not previously known to the University. As is the case with all matters of this type, we will work in partnership with the NCAA to determine whether a violation occurred.”

Florida State head coach Jimbo Fisher said earlier Wednesday that he had “no knowledge of it” until Wednesday morning and believed Winston getting free food from the store was an “isolated incident.” He also said the school’s compliance department had been in touch with Publix.

“We did make contact with Publix back then to make sure there was nothing going on … talking to our compliance this morning. They had communications about that before, and they’ve had communications today,” Fisher said. “They think it’s a totally isolated incident that happened. They’re in the process of working with it right now. They don’t think it’s anything else more than that.”

Meanwhile, Winston, the 2013 Heisman Trophy winner, is projected to be a first round pick in next week’s NFL draft.

For more Florida State news, visit Warchant.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 22, 2015, 8:24 pm

Oct 19, 2013; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Connecticut Huskies tight end Sean McQuillan (49) carries the ball during the 4th quarter of the game against the Cincinnati Bearcats at Nippert Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rob Leifheit-USA TODAY SportsUConn starting tight end Sean McQuillan was charged with assault Friday after allegedly getting into a fight with his roommate at their off-campus apartment.

According to the Hartford Courant, McQuillan, a senior, was charged with a second-degree assault charge, a class D felony, and disorderly conduct, a misdemeanor.

According to police, McQuillan “assaulted another person resulting in significant facial injuries to the victim.” After posting bail and being arraigned in court Monday, McQuillan was ordered not to have any contact with his roommate but was “allowed to return to the apartment only to pick up his belongings.”

UConn is aware of the incident.

“The athletic department is aware of the situation and we will wait for the judicial process to take its full course,” UConn spokesman Mike Enright said in a statement. “In the meantime, Sean has a responsibility to finish out the semester academically.”

The 6-foot-3, 247-pound McQuillan, 22, started 11 games for the Huskies and hauled in 16 passes for 158 yards and a touchdown in 2014. Overall in his career, McQuillan has 41 receptions for 354 yards and two touchdowns.

According to the Courant, McQuillan is due in court on May 21. 

For more Connecticut news, visit UConnReport.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 22, 2015, 6:43 pm

Not long after Tennessee offensive lineman Coleman Thomas was cleared in the alleged theft of an Xbox, a former Tennessee defensive lineman has been charged.

Former Volunteer Michael Sawyers is now facing felony theft charges after being identified as a suspect. According to the Knoxville News-Sentinel, UT police obtained the charge on April 8 against Sawyers. He has not been arrested.

Thomas was initially charged with theft after he pawned an Xbox, three games and a controller at a GameStop. According to his lawyer, Thomas didn't know the items were stolen and the charges against him were subsequently dropped. The items had allegedly been stolen from a campus dorm.

From the News-Sentinel:

Thomas told authorities a former member of the football team had asked him to pawn the items. He also said that former Vol had a video gaming system the men had played on so he assumed the one he pawned was owned by the former teammate. Thomas gave the cash from the sale of the items to the former Vol, records state.

Sawyers is not identified as the former Volunteer. He was dismissed from the team earlier in the year for a violation of team rules. As a freshman in 2014, he played in four games and had two tackles. He was a four-star recruit in the calss of 2014 and the No. 7 player in the state of Tennessee according to Rivals.

Thomas was reinstated to the football team after the charges were dropped.

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Author: Nick Bromberg
Posted: April 22, 2015, 4:03 pm

TALLAHASSEE, FL - APRIL 11:  Head coach Jimbo Fisher of the Florida State Seminole watches action during Florida State's Garnet and Gold spring game at Doak Campbell Stadium on April 11, 2015 in Tallahassee, Florida.  (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)In an episode of ESPN’s “Draft Academy,” former Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston said he had a “hook up” for free food with a Publix employee that led to his infamous citation for shoplifting crab legs.

A day after the episode aired, FSU head coach Jimbo Fisher said he believes Winston’s belief that he could walk out of the store with free food was an “isolated incident,” according to Warchant.com.

In past interviews, Fisher said that Winston made a mistake when he walked out without paying. Fisher said Wednesday that Winston’s explanation on “Draft Academy,” which took place in a classroom segment with Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh, was the first time he heard of the “hook up” arrangement.

“If he says it is (true), I guess it is,” Fisher said on an ACC coaches’ teleconference. “I had no knowledge of it until I came in this morning.”

Fisher said FSU’s compliance department reached out to Publix after the incident.

“We did make contact with Publix back then to make sure there was nothing going on … talking to our compliance this morning. They had communications about that before, and they’ve had communications today,” Fisher said. “They think it’s a totally isolated incident that happened. They’re in the process of working with it right now. They don’t think it’s anything else more than that.”

Winston never made a public comment about the incident, but did say he made a “terrible mistake” in a statement released through FSU.

“In a moment of youthful ignorance, I walked out of the store without paying for one of my items,” the statement said in part.

Winston was suspended from the Seminoles’ baseball team for three games and performed community service after being cited.

For more Florida State news, visit Warchant.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 22, 2015, 3:56 pm

Stanford running back Kelsey Young runs against Utah during the second half of an NCAA college football game on Saturday, Nov. 15, 2014, in Stanford, Calif. Utah won 20-17 in overtime. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)Boise State received a boost to its depth at running back on Tuesday.

Head coach Bryan Harsin announced that Stanford running back Kelsey Young is joining the Broncos as a graduate transfer for the 2015 season. Young, who earned a degree in computer science, will be eligible to play immediately.

Young was the Cardinal’s second-leading rusher in 2014 with 331 yards on 66 attempts. He also caught five passes for 31 yards in 2014. In 2012 and 2013, Young combined for 270 yards and three touchdowns rushing and had 11 catches for 111 yards.

Young, the older brother of Boise redshirt freshman running back Cory Young, joins a group of backs looking to fill the void left by Jay Ajayi, who declared for the NFL Draft after his junior season.

In addition to Kelsey and Cory Young, the Broncos have sophomore Jeremy McNichols (159 yards, TD), senior Jack Fields (31 yards) and junior Devan Demas (173 yards, 2 TDs) on scholarship at running back. Raymond Sheard, a 2015 signee, won’t enroll at BSU after being arrested earlier this month.

Young wasn’t the only member of the Stanford backfield to transfer this week. Fullback Patrick Skov announced on Twitter Tuesday that he’ll transfer to Georgia Tech after graduating from Stanford in June. Skov played in 39 games for the Cardinal in the past three seasons and scored four rushing touchdowns. 

For more Boise State news, visit Blue-Turf.com. For more Stanford news, visit CardinalSportsReport.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 22, 2015, 2:51 pm

FILE - In this Jan. 1, 2015, file photo, Alabama head coach Nick Saban speaks to his players in the first half of the Sugar Bowl NCAA college football playoff semifinal game against Ohio State in New Orleans. Saban is expected to address the media Monday, March 30, 2015, after two Crimson Tide players were arrested in separate cases over the weekend. Defensive back Geno Smith and defensive lineman Jonathan Taylor are facing legal trouble again.(AP Photo/Brynn Anderson, File)Add Alabama’s Nick Saban to the list of SEC coaches who aren’t pleased with Big Ten coaches working at satellite camps in the South.

Michigan unveiled its “Football Summer Swarm Tour” last week that includes appearances at nine camps in seven states from June 4-12. One stop is right in Saban’s backyard at Prattville High School in Prattville, Ala. When asked at a Crimson Caravan stop Tuesday evening, Saban said satellite camps are “ridiculous.”

“If we’re all going to travel all over the country to have satellite camps, you know, how ridiculous is that?” Saban said, per Al.com. “I mean we’re not allowed to go to all-star games, but now we’re going to have satellite camps all over the country. So it doesn’t really make sense.”

As detailed in a column from Yahoo Sports’ Pat Forde on Tuesday, incoming SEC commissioner Greg Sankey, who called the camps “recruiting tours,” said that the league preferred the NCAA to outlaw the practice of coaching staffs being “guests” at other school’s camps.

The NCAA currently prohibits programs from hosting camps more than 50 miles from their own campus, but a loophole does allow coaching staffs to participate as guests at camps hosted by other schools – whether it’s at the high school level or a lower level of college football.

While other programs across the country have taken advantage of that loophole in the past, the issue first seemed to cause a stir among SEC coaches when Penn State coach James Franklin brought his staff to camps in Florida and Georgia last summer. Franklin will continue the practice this summer with stops in North Carolina, Virginia, Georgia, suburban Chicago and Detroit.

The SEC forbids its member programs from taking advantage of that loophole and Sankey said that the issue would be discussed at next month’s SEC meetings.

“I’m not sure that the others want our coaches going to places like State College, Pennsylvania, because very clearly, if we do take the approach others have, they will go places and run those satellite camps, and it will certainly, I would expect, change the tone of the conversation,” Sankey said.

Saban considers the camps a “competitive disadvantage” that needs to be addressed.

“I certainly think that we need to address this if it’s going to be a competitive disadvantage and other people are going to have these kind of camps,” Saban said. “So, I think it’s something that we’ll probably address as a conference, and I think it’s something we ought to look at from an NCAA standpoint because I think it’s best to have a rule where people come to your campus, they can come to your camp.”

For more Alabama news, visit TideSports.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 22, 2015, 2:03 pm

People associated with schools outside the Big 12 were also apparently frustrated with the College Football Playoff's process in 2014.

According to Warchant.com, two members of the Florida State Board of Trustees expressed concern at a March meeting over the ACC's status and one called for an expansion of the College Football Playoff.

"I think the perceived bias of the ACC in general, [with] Florida State falling to No. 4 in the rankings and still being undefeated and being [No.] 3 at the end of the season … a one-loss ACC team or two-loss ACC team is going to have a hard time breaking that top four," trustee Joe Gruters said. "I think the top ACC team over the next four or five years, we're going to be in that [No.] 5 to 8 category. And we're going to be on the outside looking in."

Gruters then asked for the school to urge the ACC to ask the Playoff to expand to eight teams. Not long ago, TCU coach Gary Patterson expressed his disappointment at the process that knocked the Horned Frogs from the top four of the standings during the last week of the season.

Trustee Edward Burr brought up the ACC's long-debated television network and said he wanted tangible signs of progress that the network was moving forward.

"All of the Big Five is going to have one except for us if we don't get something moving soon," Burr said. "And that's a major revenue source."

The ACC Network has been discussed ever since the last major round of conference expansion. While it's likely to happen eventually, the ACC and the Big 12 are the only Power Five conferences without a television network. And yes, we want to quickly point out that we don't think there's a correlation between CFP favoritism and conferences who have television networks. It's not like a bunch of people have access to the Pac-12 Network.

Does the ACC have a chance of its champion missing out on the Playoff in the next few years? Of course. And as FSU has been the conference's dominant team, it's natural that someone associated with the school would play the role of Chicken Little after one season of the CFP. But, as we saw last year, the chances of missing out are not limited to just the ACC. Until the final week of the season, the Big Ten was looking like it'd be left out.

According to ACC commissioner John Swofford, the conference hears the calls for CFP expansion but isn't endorsing them.

"I don't think there's any significant support for expanding the playoff at this point in time, particularly at the presidential level," Swofford told Warchant. "The feedback that we are getting is that the vast majority of individuals that make these decisions are completely supportive of the four teams at this point in time. And I would expect that to hold true through this 12-year contract in all probability. That remains to be seen, but there does not seem to be much momentum at all for expanding from four to eight."
For more Florida State news, visit Warchant.com.

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Nick Bromberg is the assistant editor of Dr. Saturday on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at nickbromberg@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!
Author: Nick Bromberg
Posted: April 22, 2015, 1:53 pm

We now have an explanation from former Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston about the crab leg incident from a Tallahassee, Fla., area Publix last spring.

Almost a year ago, Winston was issued a citation for shoplifting crab legs and crawfish and was suspended from the Florida State baseball team. The 2013 Heisman winner did community service as part of his punishment and was the butt of many, many jokes throughout the rest of the season.

In an episode of ESPN's Draft Academy filmed earlier this year and released Tuesday, Winston met with Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh and Michigan quarterbacks coach Jedd Fisch. The three were discussing topics that would come up in interviews with teams and Fisch brought up the crab legs incident. Harbaugh, after telling Winston to be "as serious as a heart attack" when mentioning the incident, then asked Winston exactly what happened. Here's what he said:

"Well, a week before was my buddy’s birthday and we had got a cake," Winston said. "We met a dude that worked inside Publix and he said, 'Hey, anytime you come in here, I got you.' So that day, we just walked out and he hooked us up with that. And when I went to get crab legs, I did the same thing and he just gave them to me and I walked out. And someone from inside the store had told the security that I didn’t pay for them and that’s how the whole thing started."

Despite the off-field questions surrounding not only the crab legs incident, but Erica Kinsman's allegations against him and a series of profanities in public that got him suspended for a game in 2014, Winston is the presumptive No. 1 overall pick in the 2015 NFL draft and will likely be a member of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

And of course, free food from a grocery store because of a football player's status can be an NCAA violation, though we're guessing it's unlikely this is going to result in any punishments or a big investigation, just as Braxton Miller's Instagram photo netted little from the NCAA. But now, thanks to the coach of another college football team, we have a public explanation from Winston. You've gotta love draft season and the programming it creates.

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Author: Nick Bromberg
Posted: April 22, 2015, 1:02 pm

Despite making no public statements to suggest he's heading to another school, speculation continues about Braxton Miller possibly not finishing his college career at Ohio State.

Tuesday, radio host and ESPN personality Paul Finebaum said a he talked to a source who said there was "a chance" Miller could end up at Alabama.

.@finebaum just said he talked to a source at Alabama who said there's "a chance" Braxton Miller comes to Alabama.

— Marc Torrence (@marctorrence) April 21, 2015

There's also a chance you could win the lottery this week.

Miller, as you know, missed the 2014 season with a shoulder injury, which he's currently rehabbing. He was replaced by J.T. Barrett and Barrett was replaced by Cardale Jones after he got hurt. Both Barrett and Jones are back, as you know. Both Barrett and Jones are good, as you know. So is Miller. And, Ohio State is keeping quiet about the quarterback competition for 2015.

Alabama coach Nick Saban was asked about any possible transfer on Tuesday. In the least startling news you've heard today, he said he was not going to talk about any players on other teams.

From AL.com:

"I'm not really to talk about any other players on any other team," Saban said before the question was finished. "I know nothing about any such rumors. I don't even know who you're talking about but I don't know about any of those things."

Because of the shoulder injury, Miller is seen as potentially the odd man out because he could be a graduate transfer and play immediately if he so chooses. In January, he said at Ohio State's celebration of its 2014 title that "We've got another year."

Barrett has said he thinks discussion of Miller transferring is "silly."

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Author: Nick Bromberg
Posted: April 22, 2015, 12:59 am

Notre Dame quarterback Everett Golson (5) loses the ball after being hit by Syracuse defensive end Isaiah Johnson, front, and linebacker Cameron Lynch during the first half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Sept. 27, 2014, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)Syracuse defensive lineman’s Isaiah Johnson’s football career could be over. 

The program announced Tuesday that team physician Dr. James Tucker medically disqualified Johnson from competing for Syracuse due to his history of concussions. Johnson, a 6-foot-4, 283-pound defensive end, was entering his junior year with the program.

In two seasons, Johnson played in 23 games and registered 10 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks and an interception.

Johnson suffered his first concussion in November 2013 when he sacked Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston. He missed the final two games of that season and told Syracuse.com in December 2013 that he “lost his memory for a week and a half” and that a concussion is “the worst thing (he’d) wish upon anyone.”

“I seriously don’t remember how I got home,” Johnson said of the return trip from FSU to Syracuse. “I mean, obviously on a plane, but I don’t remember getting on the plane. My dad said he came down. I don’t even remember seeing him.”

It’s unknown when Johnson’s other concussions occurred.

With the Orange replacing three starters on the defensive line, Johnson had a chance to see increased snaps in 2015. 

In addition to Johnson, two other Syracuse players – defensive end Tyler Marona and offensive lineman Kyle Knapp – had their careers cut short due to concussions in the past two seasons. 

For more Syracuse news, visit CuseConfidential.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 21, 2015, 10:52 pm

Pac-12 athletes claim they are "too exhausted to study effectively," according to a study conducted by the conference this month.

The study questioned 409 Pac-12 athletes from nine schools (USC, Utah and Arizona did not participate) about how they split their time between their sport and their studies. Many of those polled by the firm Penn Schoen and Berland, which is known for its work on the presidential campaigns of Bill and Hillary Clinton, said that physical exhaustion was a “major issue” and that the time demands of their sports created "anxiety and a loss of sleep that hinders academic and athletic performance."

CBSSports.com, which obtained a copy of the report, noted that loss of sleep was the main thing athletes noted as a drawback of being a student-athlete. Several noted that if they had a day off, they’d use it to sleep. Athletes also noted that travel creates issues with keeping up with homework, studies and sleep.

CBSSports.com also highlighted some other tidbits from the report:

* Eighty percent of Pac-12 athletes say they missed a class for a game in 2014-15.

* More than half (54 percent) say they don't have enough time to study for tests.

* Almost three-quarters (73 percent) said they felt a voluntary activity was considered mandatory. Some reported coaches threatening to "kick athletes off the team for missing voluntary activities."

* Two-thirds say sports demands impacted their social lives. "Pac-12 athletes express a desire to make new friends outside of their sports teams."

Despite concern over sleep and keeping up with studies, nearly all the athletes polled said they wouldn’t trade the time they have to spend on athletics, which many claimed was up to 50 hours per week after traveling, medical treatment and voluntary practices and meetings were factored.

Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott said he wasn’t sure whether the report would create some sort of NCAA legislation, but he did acknowledge that the conference needed to make sure there was healthy balance between the student and the athlete.

"Essentially we want to make sure we have the appropriate balance between academic and athletics," Scott told CSBSports.com. "Some things ... in certain areas may be out of whack."

-----

Graham Watson is the editor of Dr. Saturday on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email her at dr.saturday@ymail.com or follow her on Twitter! Follow @YahooDrSaturday

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Author: Graham Watson
Posted: April 21, 2015, 9:43 pm

(via NC State athletics)N.C. State defensive end Ty Linton is leaving the program, but he won’t be playing football at another school.

Instead, Linton, a sophomore, will enroll in Middle Tennessee State’s aeronautical science program to pursue his dream of becoming a pilot, the Wolfpack program announced.

"My dream has always been to become a pilot," Linton said. "My mom, dad and two sisters are in the flight industry so it's always been a passion of mine.”

The 25-year-old Linton arrived at NC State in 2014 after playing professional baseball in the Arizona Diamondbacks organization for three seasons. He missed the 2014 football season due to a torn ACL.

“I’m 25 years old with two knee surgeries behind me and no ambition to play football at the next level, so it’s time for me to start thinking about my career,” Linton said. “I want to thank Coach Doeren and the Wolfpack family for the opportunity to be a part of this program. I’ve met a lot of great people in a short time and consider my NC State teammates to be my brothers.”

The 6-foot-2, 254-pound Linton, a native of Weddington, N.C., originally signed with North Carolina as a recruit in the 2010 class, but decided to pursue a baseball career after the Diamondbacks selected him in the 14th round of the 2010 MLB draft.

"I'm proud of Ty for achieving admission to flight school," said Wolfpack head coach Dave Doeren. “He came here to follow his dreams and I have loved being a part of his career. He will be a very successful professional.”

Linton appeared in 116 games at the rookie and single-A levels as a baseball player. Overall, he had a .233 batting average with 10 home runs, 53 runs batted in and a .285 on-base percentage. 

For more North Carolina State news, visit TheWolfPacker.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 21, 2015, 8:30 pm

FILE - In this Oct. 13, 2012, file photo, Baylor's Matt Ritchey (45) stands by the Big 12 Conference logo painted on the field during an NCAA college football game against TCU in Waco, Texas. The ACC and the Big 12 are in the process of trying to change NCAA rules regarding conference championship games. Currently, a conference must have at least 12 teams, split into two divisions and all the teams in that division must play each other. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez, File)The Big 12 is the only Power Five conference that doesn’t have a championship game. During the league’s spring teleconference on Tuesday, most of the league’s coaches expressed support for a change – especially it would help a team from the league earn one of the four spots in the College Football Playoff.

If Baylor and TCU – the league’s co-champions – played again last season in a title game, would it have pushed one into the playoff instead of Ohio State, who destroyed Wisconsin 59-0 in the Big Ten title game? If that’s the case, the majority of league coaches want to see a change.

“If it makes a difference if we would get into the playoff, yes,” TCU head coach Gary Patterson said, per the Fort Worth Star Telegram. “If that’s important to our conference, then do it.”

The Big 12 is currently prohibited from having a championship game since it has only 10 members, but it has been widely reported that the NCAA would allow an exception for the Big 12 beginning in 2016. The issue will be discussed at the Big 12 spring meetings in May, according to the Star-Telegram.

"I think it'd be great," said West Virginia coach Dana Holgorsen, per The Oklahoman. "One thing I've always been a proponent of is everybody doing the same thing. Back when the Big 12 had a champion game and other leagues didn't, we were complaining about that. Being on the same level I think is important. Last year, I think it kind of hurt the Big 12 a little bit. Being on the same playing field is what everyone's after."

Oklahoma head coach Bob Stoops agrees with Holgorsen.

“If the selection committee is weighting and putting a scoring system to number of wins, number of games played, that extra game, if it matters that much, then I would be in favor of playing it,” Stoops said.

Kansas State’s Bill Snyder and Texas Tech’s Kliff Kingsbury also said they’d support a championship game.

“Based on what happened last year, it’s not as much about being for it or against it. It’s a matter of getting another quality game for our teams to keep up with the other Power Five leagues,” Kingsbury said.

Despite many coaches showing support, there were still a few coaches who aren’t on board, including Oklahoma State’s Mike Gundy, Texas’ Charlie Strong and Iowa State’s Paul Rhoads.

"I still think if you win our league, you're going to have a really, really good chance to get in the final four," Gundy said, via The Oklahoman. "If we had labeled one team this year (TCU or Baylor) as the Big 12 Conference champion, we would have gotten a team in this season. My personal opinion is, (the College Football Playoff)’s going to eight teams before we know it. I think I saw where there is a $200 million profit through the playoff system. I'm just not sure whether we should have a conference championship or just play our games."

Baylor coach Art Briles, whose team finished fifth in the final rankings, said if a team goes undefeated in league play, it won’t have an issue making the Playoff field.

“If you can go undefeated in our league, you’ll be in the College Football Playoff,” Briles said. “Whether that would have made a difference last year, I don’t know. That’s something we can all speculate on and still not know.”

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 21, 2015, 7:57 pm

Shameik Blackshear (via Rivals)The petit larceny charge against South Carolina signee Shameik Blackshear was dropped Tuesday morning after the alleged victim and a witness in the case decided not to testify. Additionally, the alleged victim requested to have Blackshear’s charge dropped, prosecutor Ben Shelton said in Bluffton (S.C.) Municipal Court.

According to the Island Packet, Shelton said the misdemeanor charge against Blackshear was not severe enough to force the alleged victim to testify.

Blackshear, a four-star defensive end, was accused of stealing a purse and safe from a house on Feb. 7. The total value of the stolen items was $1,390, according to the incident report.

Blackshear, who told police he was never at the house, was arrested at his high school on Feb. 13 and charged less than a week after signing with the Gamecocks on National Signing Day. Blackshear’s attorney, Thomas C. Taylor, said that there was a lack of physical evidence and that the witnesses’ statements changed. He also was critical of Bluffton police for the manner in which Blackshear was arrested.

“They chose to drag him out of the school in handcuffs in front of his friends and classmates, when he would have been glad to come down and meet police,” Taylor said according to Bluffton Today. “It was unconscionable. Shameik is a fine young man with a great family who has done a lot to make Bluffton proud.”

Blackshear is now set to arrive at South Carolina on May 30, Taylor said, and the arrest will be expunged from his record.

“From what we understand, he was innocent all the way,” head coach Steve Spurrier said, per The State. “Unless something comes up differently. We had heard that they would drop the charges. As far as I know, he is clear to come with the rest of the team. He was falsely accused.”

The 6-foot-4, 230-pound Blackshear, who was rated as the fifth-best player from South Carolina in the 2015 class, tore his ACL in the second game of his senior season. Taylor said his knee will be tested by South Carolina’s team doctors when he arrives on campus.

For more South Carolina news, visit GamecockCentral.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 21, 2015, 6:21 pm

Mack Brown is traveling the world on behalf of Texas.

According to the Austin American-Statesman, the former Longhorns coach is in Dubai to "meant to explore future possibilities for Texas athletics." While he's an ESPN analyst, he is also in a special capacity for the university.

We just arrived in Dubai. Looking forward to a great trip building UT relationships! pic.twitter.com/pqiypAhPly

— Mack Brown (@ESPN_CoachMack) April 20, 2015

Dubai is beautiful! pic.twitter.com/V1oZV6IRbS

— Mack Brown (@ESPN_CoachMack) April 21, 2015

Texas athletic director Steve Patterson has talked about his international desire before. Texas basketball is playing in China and Patterson has brought up a football game in Mexico City.

Per the AAS, included in this picture Brown posted was Patterson's wife, Yasmin (an Arabic speaker), David Thomas, who works for the Longhorn Network and the Longhorn's Ricky Brown.

Good morning. It's Tuesday, 8:24 here in Dubai. 14 1/2 hour flight from Houston pic.twitter.com/w9gBpSavgy

— Mack Brown (@ESPN_CoachMack) April 21, 2015

If a Texas football game was to be played in Dubai, we're going to go out on a limb and guess it would be played in a climate-controlled stadium, especially if it was early in the season. Temperatures average close to 100 degrees in September in October. While November is cooler, it's still warm by many people's standards (88 degrees). If the World Cup wasn't going to be played outdoors in the hot months in Qatar, it's hard to believe that Texas football would either.

Of course, we're also going to guess that a game in Dubai isn't a possibility in the foreseeable future. The Mexico City game seems much more feasible and it could serve as a good experiment for other games around the globe.

For more Texas news, visit Orangebloods.com.

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Nick Bromberg is the assistant editor of Dr. Saturday on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at nickbromberg@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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Author: Nick Bromberg
Posted: April 21, 2015, 5:25 pm

(AP Photo/Waco Tribune Herald, Rod Aydelotte)Baylor head coach Art Briles has been outspoken in his displeasure about the fact that his team did not make the field of the inaugural College Football Playoff in December.

The Bears had an 11-1 regular season record and boasted wins over teams like TCU and Kansas State, but were edged out by eventual champion Ohio State for the fourth and final spot. Briles was asked Tuesday if his team’s lackluster non-conference slate hindered his team’s chances of earning a playoff spot. He was emphatic with his answer.

Art Briles asked about his non-conf. scheduling philosophy. Said non-conf schedule had “zero effect” on Baylor getting left out last season

— Jake Trotter (@Jake_Trotter) April 21, 2015

To recap, the Bears’ non-conference schedule included wins over one-win SMU, FCS Northwestern State, and 5-6 Buffalo. The Bears won those games by a combined score of 178-27.

To say that that cakewalk had “zero effect” on his team’s end-of-season resume just isn’t true. Sure, Briles would more-than-likely point to his team’s 41-27 loss to West Virginia in October as a bigger reason, but the non-conference games certainly didn’t help matters. 

For more Baylor news, visit SicEmSports.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 21, 2015, 5:17 pm

Jan 1, 2014; Jacksonville, FL, USA; A Nebraska Cornhuskers helmet sits on the field before the start of their game against the Georgia Bulldogs at EverBank Field . Mandatory Credit: Phil Sears-USA TODAY SportsUniversity of Nebraska-Lincoln police cited Nebraska defensive back Boaz Joseph last week for possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia.

According to the Lincoln Journal Star, police found “3.3 grams of marijuana” and a grinder in his apartment. The 21-year-old Joseph and two others were cited after officers “executed a search warrant in a fraud investigation,” said assistant Police Chief Charlotte Evans.

Evans told the Journal Star someone used a stolen credit card to ship speakers to the apartment and police were searching for “credit card and shipping information.” Joseph’s roommate, 21-year-old Deandre Pippens, was arrested in connection with the fraud case. Pippens, who is not a Nebraska student, was also cited for marijuana possession and having a digital scale. 

A third roommate, former Huskers defensive back Ishmail Jackson, was also cited for possession of drug paraphernalia. 

Joseph, a redshirt sophomore from Weston, Fla., played in five games as a redshirt freshman for the Huskers in 2014 and registered one tackle. He’ll have to pay fines for his two citations.

In response to the incident, Nebraska said in a statement that coach Mike Riley and the athletics administration “are aware of incident” and “have no additional comment at this time.”

Joseph was previously cited for theft for stealing a “bait bike” last June. Joseph completed a pre-trial diversion program and the case was eventually dismissed in December. 

For more Nebraska news, visit HuskerOnline.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 21, 2015, 4:35 pm

Oct 18, 2014; Tuscaloosa, AL, USA; Texas A&M Aggies defensive coordinator Mark Snyder at Bryant-Denny Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY SportsThe term “SEC speed” gets thrown around a lot to describe the level of athletes in the SEC compared to the rest of the country. After spending the past three seasons as Texas A&M’s defensive coordinator, new Michigan State linebackers coach Mark Snyder is very familiar with “SEC speed,” but says the Big Ten – MSU and Ohio State, at least – is right there with the SEC.

“That speed is real, trust me,” Snyder said Monday on Lansing 92.1 FM, per Mlive.com. “But we are right there with them, no doubt. I was here for pro day and had a chance to see the guys run, and the myth of the Big Ten versus the SEC (in terms of speed), I don’t see that here, and the little bit of Ohio State film I’ve seen, I don’t see it there. We have that type of speed in this program.”

Two former Michigan State players – running back Jeremy Langford (4.42) and cornerback Trae Waynes (4.31) – ran the fastest 40-yard dash among their respective position group at the NFL combine. That alone backs up Snyder’s statements about his new team.

Snyder's transition to Michigan State is still ongoing. He said he’s still learning the ways of the program and establishing relationships with the players on a daily basis. He’s been impressed with what he’s seen from the Spartans thus far.

“I think the team is oozing with confidence right now, to be honest with you,” Snyder said. “Our kids know they are good, they know they are well-coached, they know they can run with anybody in the country, they are not going to get out-hit or out-toughed.

“We have a group of guys that really love football, and I’ve been very impressed with that.”

The Spartans haven’t even played their spring game yet, but head coach Mark Dantonio said a few weeks ago that his team is already “game ready.”

“We could go out and play a game tomorrow,” Dantonio said on April 9. “We’re going to make mistakes, but we are game ready because we practice enough, we do enough things from a live standpoint, we tackle enough. We do the things that we need to do. When we hit the field we are moving, and we have a lot of guys with experience back.”

The Spartans will hold their annual Green-White spring game on Saturday.

For more Michigan State news, visit SpartanMag.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 21, 2015, 3:38 pm

Jim Delany, Commissioner of the Big Ten Conference speaks during a news conference to announce a partnership with Madison Square Garden Tuesday, Dec. 9, 2014, in New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)In response to the Big Ten’s 12-page paper detailing the benefits of freshmen ineligibility in football and men’s basketball, the Drake Group published a paper of its own that opposed the notion that a redshirt year would benefit student-athletes academically.

“Research indicates that athletes who did not compete were more likely than those who competed to end the year in poor academic standing even when admitted under normal admission requirements,” the Drake Group’s paper said.

Two of the Big Ten’s key points in its argument for freshmen ineligibility, which it calls “a year of readiness,” were that graduation rates in men’s basketball and football are worse than athletes in other sports and that most NCAA infractions occur in those two sports.

The Drake Group pointed out three negative impacts that would stem from the Big Ten’s proposal:

(1) academically capable students will be penalized by lack of access to extracurricular activities; (2) academically capable students who wish to complete four years of athletic eligibility will have to stay in school for one or two additional semesters, increasing the cost of education to these students or to institutions that provide athletic or other scholarship assistance (estimated to be $94.5 million); and (3) non-scholarship (walk-on) athletes who may be outstanding students will see their graduation dates delayed if they wish to compete for four years.

Absent a demonstrated positive academic impact and considering the adverse economic and academic consequences, freshmen ineligibility seems misguided for athletes generally, for all participants in revenue sports, or for football and men’s basketball players only.

The Drake Group said the Big Ten’s proposal “masks the real problem” that many of the athletes who are recruited to participate in big time Division I athletics are “unprepared” for the academic workload. These students, the paper said, are often admitted “by means of exceptions to normal admission standards, and then experience excessive athletically related time demands.”

While the Drake Group “supports the practice of special admissions” and said that decisions “related to diversification of the student population and advancing educational opportunities for underserved and lower socio-economic populations are ethically justified,” it said in its paper that “access to higher education should not mean open-door eligibility for underprepared athletes.” 

The Group reaches the conclusion that simply making freshmen in men’s basketball and football ineligible is a “simplistic approach” that does not “address the need for a major course correction to restore academic integrity to the conduct of intercollegiate athletic programs.”

In order to help students from these circumstances whose “academic profiles” are lower than that of his or her incoming class, the Drake Group wrote that he or she “should be subject to national athletic governance rules.” While those rules prohibit athletes from being eligible, they also provide students with additional academic support.

That support includes:

(1) athletic scholarship assistance to support the athlete during a year of transition and remedial learning if necessary; (2) academic skills and learning disability testing; (3) if necessary, a remediation program supervised by academic authorities; (4) if necessary, a reduced college credit course load to accommodate the time required for remediation; (5) a 10 hours per week participation restriction applicable to athletics-related activities (practice, meetings, etc.); and (6) tenured faculty oversight of the student’s academic progress throughout his or her enrollment at the institution.

The Drake Group’s research shows that athletes generally underperform academically when stacked against their non-athletic peers. It has seven recommendations for universitiess to implement to lessen the gap.

(1) full enforcement of the 20 hours per week limit on all athletically related activities when classes are in session; (2) no competition during final examination periods; (3) adoption of institutional policies by faculty senates approving the maximum percentage of classes that may be missed due to scheduled athletic competitions; (4) no athletic department requirement that athletes select majors and courses that are The Drake Group Position Paper: Freshmen Ineligibility in Intercollegiate Athletics April 20, 2015 Page 3 of 12 compatible with athletics practices, meetings or competitions, (5) the scheduling of football games on weekends exclusively, because both athletes and students who are non-athletes are likely to attend; (6) the provision of athlete academic support services by academic units only, not by the athletic department; and (7) adoption of NCAA continuing eligibility standards requiring that any athlete with a cumulative GPA less than 2.0 be ineligible to participate in athletics, be restricted to a maximum of 10 athletics practice or meeting hours per week, and remain ineligible until a cumulative 2.0 GPA is achieved.

The Drake Group’s paper, which includes its research relative to the benefits of redshirt years, can be viewed in its entirety here

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 21, 2015, 2:49 pm

Miami really wants you to get excited about renovations to Sun Life Stadium.

The facility, which hosts the Hurricanes and the Miami Dolphins, is in the midst of massive renovations detailed in a(n overly?) dramatic video due to be complete in 2016.

As you can see, a roof is being installed over the seating sections of the stadium and other upgrades are being made. And while we appreciate Miami's optimism when it comes to crowd size, we wonder just how often the stadium will be as full as it's shown in the renderings. Maybe they're playing Florida State in the video? Below are a few pictures from Miami games in 2014.

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Author: Nick Bromberg
Posted: April 21, 2015, 2:10 pm

If you've paid attention to Colorado State athletics over the last couple years, you may remember Justin Stank.

He's the superfan who was noticed during the 2013 NCAA tournament, when the Rams beat Missouri and lost to Louisville. Stank, set to graduate high school this spring, has been attending Colorado State games in a ram costume for much of his life.

He now has plans to be at Colorado State football games in the near future, though the goal is to be in a Rams uniform. He hopes to walk on to Colorado State's football team after getting his associate's degree at a Fort Collins-area community college.

From the Coloradoan:

Stank, now a senior, was recruited by NAIA and junior colleges to continue his football career, but there's only one school he's ever had an interest playing for, CSU. Since his grades won't allow him to enroll in the fall, he plans on attending Front Range Community College in Fort Collins to get his associate's degree before transferring in, similar to what former star running back Kapri Bibbs — now a Denver Bronco — did, Stank said, but as a walk-on.

At 5-7, Stank's height likely contributed to the lack of attention he got from big-time colleges. He played center at his high school and his coach said he was a great fit for his offense's system.

According to the Coloradoan, he got offensive line pointers from former Colorado State coach Jim McElwain. With McElwain now at Florida, Stank likely won't be playing for him in the near future, though we hope he can go from mascot to player. It'd be a pretty cool story.

For more Colorado State news, visit GreenandGoldNews.com.

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Author: Nick Bromberg
Posted: April 21, 2015, 1:05 pm

South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier still thinks Penn State coach Joe Paterno was treated unfairly during the Jerry Sandusky sex abuse scandal.

The former Penn State coach was fired from his post as the scandal involving his defensive coordinator took off. The topic of Paterno came up when Spurrier referenced him in an interview with The State about turning 70 years old. Spurrier's birthday was Monday.

From The State:

Question: When you were 50 years old, what did you think about guys who were coaching in their 70s?

Answer: Well, there weren’t many. There weren’t many because just nobody did it. Nobody lasted that long, and most of the time they didn’t last that long because at some point they quit winning as much as they used to win. Bobby Bowden, of course, went a long time, and they finally had to tell him, ‘You’re finished.’ Joe Paterno was still there. That was very unfortunate what happened up there. I still think he got a bad deal, got a terrible deal.

Q: In terms of taking so much blame?

A: Correct. He did what the head coach is supposed to do. He told the athletic director, and (the AD) and the president let it die down I guess, and of course it flared up later. He was a good guy, a good friend. I liked him.

The interview with the State came on the heels of the publication of Spurrier's workout video.

Paterno told vice president Gary Schultz and athletic director Tim Curley when he was told of allegations surrounding Sandusky. In testimony to a grand jury before his death, Paterno said he figured Curley would handle the allegations "appropriately." They were not.

Shortly after his firing in November 2011, Paterno died in January 2012 at 85.

As part of the NCAA's punishment against Penn State, a portion of Paterno's wins were vacated in addition to a bowl ban, scholarship reductions and a fine. The NCAA reinstated Paterno's wins in January as part of a settlement agreement.

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Author: Nick Bromberg
Posted: April 21, 2015, 12:22 pm

Troy Aikman's name is going to be on UCLA's strength facility.

The former Dallas Cowboys quarterback and Fox NFL analyst donated $1,000,000 to UCLA's Wasserman Football Center. As a result of his donation, the strength center inside the building will be known as the Troy Aikman Strength and Conditioning Center.

"UCLA holds a very special place in my heart,” Aikman said in a statement.  “As you go through life, it is common to be defined by the company you keep.  I’ve been fortunate to be associated with two outstanding institutions.  In many eyes, I’ll always be a Dallas Cowboy, and I’m extremely proud of that.  By making this contribution to UCLA Football, It’s clear that I am, and always will be, a UCLA Bruin as well.  My time at UCLA helped mold me into the person I am today, and I want the Bruin student-athletes that come after me to have the same opportunity I had to achieve their boyhood dreams.” 

Aikman, an NFL Hall of Fame quarterback, transferred to UCLA after he left Oklahoma. After two seasons at UCLA, he was the No. 1 pick in the 1989 NFL draft by the Cowboys and won three Super Bowls in his career. His jersey was retired in November at UCLA.

The Wasserman Football Center is being built as part of upgrades to UCLA's facilities. According to a sheet published last fall, the strength and conditioing facility was the second-biggest asset in the facility (behind the facility and lobby) in terms of donor naming rights.

For more UCLA news, visit BruinSportsReport.com.

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Author: Nick Bromberg
Posted: April 21, 2015, 11:39 am

North Carolina will have new football uniforms for 2015 that incorporate the school's argyle pattern.

The updated uniforms are part of a school-wide "refresh." According to Nike, the school's 28 teams will all have consistent lettering, logos and numerals in 2015 and beyond.

“We are excited to once again partner with Nike, one of the most recognizable brands in the world, to help us refresh and refine our marks and logos,” North Carolina athletic director Bubba Cunningham said in a statement. “The changes are subtle, but they celebrate our history and create consistency as we further seek to distinguish our brand.  This is our blue and we’re proud of it.” 

The new football uniforms have the argyle on the collar on the home uniforms.

Here's a sample of what North Carolina wore in 2014.

The new uniforms look nice. And clean, which is a big deal as far as we're concerned. Thankfully North Carolina wasn't inspired by TCU's new uniforms and went with an argyle pattern all over the football jerseys.

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Author: Nick Bromberg
Posted: April 21, 2015, 12:42 am

EVANSTON, IL- SEPTEMBER 06: Kyle Prater #21 of the Northwestern Wildcats* is tackled by Rasheen Lemon #9 of the Northern Illinois Huskies on September 6, 2014 at Ryan Field in Evanston, Illinois. (Photo by David Banks/Getty Images)A leader on Northern Illinois’ defense ran into some legal trouble last week.

According to the DeKalb Daily Chronicle, redshirt senior linebacker Rasheen Lemon was arrested and charged with two counts of domestic battery and unlawful restraint on April 12. The unlawful restraint charge is a Class 4 felony that could result in probation or 1-3 years in prison.

Following his arrest last week, Northern Illinois suspended Lemon indefinitely.

According to police, the charges against Lemon, 22, stemmed from an argument with his girlfriend. From the Daily Chronicle:

According to court documents, Lemon, 22, and his girlfriend were arguing around 2 a.m. on April 12 when he pushed her to the ground and straddled her to hold her down. The 6-foot-1, 185-pound Lemon also stepped on her chest and caused a cut to the interior of her bottom lip, court records show.

Lemon was second on the Huskies with 90 tackles in 2014. He also registered 2.5 sacks, three tackles for loss and two forced fumbles. After redshirting the 2011 season, Lemon combined for 25 tackles, 1.5 sacks and 1.5 tackles for loss in 16 games played in 2012 and 2013.

Northern Illinois head coach Rod Carey declined to comment on the situation.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 20, 2015, 10:10 pm

Call WR coach Pierre Ingram (bearinsider.com)Cal’s top recruiter, Pierre Ingram, was arrested April 16 as part of a prostitution sting, according to the San Jose Mercury News.

Ingram, who is the Golden Bears’ recruiting coordinator and wide receivers coach, allegedly solicited an undercover police officer online and was arrested when he tried to meet her at a Motel 6. Ingram was one of five men arrested during the sting operation.

Ingram was booked on suspicion of misdemeanor solicitation of a lewd act and has a court date next month.

Ingram was responsible for most of Cal’s recruiting success, including taking the lead on three of the program’s four four-star recruits in the 2015 class as well as helping secure the team’s top in-state talent.

The school has not yet commented on the situation.

For more Cal news, visit GoldenBearReport.com.

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Graham Watson is the editor of Dr. Saturday on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email her at dr.saturday@ymail.com or follow her on Twitter! Follow @YahooDrSaturday

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Author: Graham Watson
Posted: April 20, 2015, 9:38 pm

Timing is everything; just ask this five-year-old Alabama fan.

According to a reader email sent to Barstool Sports, the young fan was attending his cousin’s wedding and yelled out a triumphant “Roll Tide!” at the perfect time – right as the groom kissed his bride.

The reader said that the whole family is full of huge Alabama fans.

It appears the young man has been taught well. 

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 20, 2015, 9:31 pm

President Barack Obama holds up a Ohio State football jersey that he was presented with from Ohio State football players Curtis Grant and Doran Grant, as head coach Urban Meyer watches at right. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)A few months after capturing a national title, the Ohio State Buckeyes made a trip to the White House in Washington D.C. Monday to be honored by President Barack Obama.

After leading those in attendance in an “OH-IO” cheer, President Obama lauded the Buckeyes for their achievements on and off the field.

“The Buckeyes hit their stride when it mattered most. At critical moments throughout the season, we learned about the character of this football team,” the President said.

Obama detailed the team’s incredible depth at quarterback from Braxton Miller to J.T. Barrett to Cardale “12-gauge” Jones, and even made sure to refer to Michigan as “the team up north” when mentioning Barrett’s injury against the Wolverines.

Obama also made sure to joke with running back Ezekiel Elliott about the NCAA”s new crop-top rule and mention standout defensive end Joey Bosa’s signature “shrug” celebration.

Once the President concluded his speech, OSU head coach Urban Meyer thanked Obama for being an early supporter for the creation of a College Football Playoff. Meyer also presented Obama with a game ball from the national title victory over Oregon and a red “Obama” No. 44 Buckeyes jersey.

pic.twitter.com/GqVPYxDTsI

— Urban Meyer (@OSUCoachMeyer) April 20, 2015

Later on Monday, the Buckeyes will he honored by members of Congress at the Capitol building. 

For more Ohio State news, visit BuckeyeGrove.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 20, 2015, 8:14 pm

Auburn has named Jeremy Johnson its quarterback of the future.

Johnson, a junior who was the favorite all spring, solidified his starting role with a fantastic first-half performance during Auburn’s annual A-Day game last Saturday.

Johnson led Team Auburn, which was made up of all first-team players, on four scoring drives. He completed 14 of 22 passes for 252 yards and two touchdowns in front of an announced crowd of 62,143 at Jordan-Hare Stadium.

We just named Jeremy Johnson our starting QB for 2015. Everyone in our program has 100 percent confidence in him! War Eagle!

— Coach Gus Malzahn (@CoachGusMalzahn) April 20, 2015

Johnson’s first touchdown passes came on a 36-yard strike to D’haquille Williams in the right corner of the end zone early in the first quarter. In the second quarter, Johnson found Ricardo Lewis on a 49-yard pass and then Williams for the score.

However, not everything was perfect. Johnson did have a stretch where he threw five incompletions in a six-pass span before ultimately finding Lewis.

"I didn't perform to my best that I thought I should have performed but I did OK," Johnson said. "It was really about giving our receivers a chance and let them make plays down the field … (The incompletions are) the plays that we got to make if we want to be successful this season."

Johnson is already drawing comparisons to Auburn’s former Heisman winner Cam Newton. The two players are similar in physique and throw a similarly strong ball. Auburn can only hope those comparisons are accurate in the fall.

“He’s got a lot of experience,” Malzahn told the SEC Network during the game telecast. “Even though he’s been the backup, he has as much experience as anyone with practice and game snaps. I thought he did a good job today and we have high expectations for him.”

For more Auburn news, visit AuburnSports.com.

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Graham Watson is the editor of Dr. Saturday on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email her at dr.saturday@ymail.com or follow her on Twitter! Follow @YahooDrSaturday

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Author: Graham Watson
Posted: April 20, 2015, 7:57 pm

Tennessee held Student Appreciation Day on Saturday at Neyland Stadium, allowing the student body to head down to the field for a Vols practice.

As practice came to an end, the players let loose by showing off their dance moves. The students on hand were especially impressed by fifth-year senior offensive lineman Kyler Kerbyson.

#StudentPractice15 pic.twitter.com/b5FN8jySu5

— Jake Auernheimer (@jakeauernheimer) April 18, 2015

Kerbyson, who started all 13 games for the Vols last season, shows off some serious skills – especially for a 6-foot-4, 317-pound lineman.

Sunday’s #Vols Briefing w/ news on #StudentAppreciationDay @A_kamara6 @MrHurd_1 @EMoseley_4 http://t.co/GwwgWqHHo4 pic.twitter.com/uhCcf7bUdy

— Tennessee Football (@Vol_Football) April 19, 2015

Here’s a full report from Student Appreciation Day.

The Vols’ spring practice schedule will conclude with next Saturday’s Orange and White spring game at 4 p.m. at Neyland.

For more Tennessee news, visit VolQuest.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 20, 2015, 7:21 pm

It’s been nearly six years since Jake Olsen became an honorary member of the USC football team. In the fall, the “honorary” title will be dropped and, as the Los Angeles Times reported, Olsen will join the team as a walk-on.

Olsen is an 18-year-old senior long snapper at Orange Lutheran. He has a 4.3 grade average, is a member of the golf team, sang in the school choir, and is blind.

Olsen was born with retinoblastoma, a rare form of retina cancer. He lost his left eye at 10 months and his right one when he was 12. It was around that time when he became an avid USC fan and met former coach Pete Carroll.

Olsen’s relationship with Carroll and ultimately the entire USC program was documented in a ESPN College Football Gameday piece in 2013. Olsen never let his blindness hold him back. He learned, thanks to the help of coaches and teammates, to be a long snapper and hit a golf ball. He became an inspiration to nearly everyone who met him. He helped pen two books and is an accomplished motivational speaker.

The Los Angeles Times had a lengthy feature about Olsen’s journey to USC, which included a desire to live a normal life despite his disability.

In February, Olsen received a Swim With Mike scholarship, which is awarded annually from the Physically Challenged Athletes Scholarship fund. The fund, which is named for former USC swimmer Mike Nyeholt, who was paralyzed from the chest down in a motorcycle accident, has raised more than $16 million and has funded scholarships at 85 universities since 1981.

USC coach Steve Sarkisian told the Los Angeles Times that he fully expected Olsen to participate in a collegiate game before his time with the Trojans was complete.

"Someday, he's going to snap in a game for us," Sarkisian told the paper. "When? I don't know. But it will happen.

"When that day comes, it will be awesome."

For more USC news, visit TrojanSports.com.

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Graham Watson is the editor of Dr. Saturday on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email her at dr.saturday@ymail.com or follow her on Twitter! Follow @YahooDrSaturday

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Author: Graham Watson
Posted: April 20, 2015, 6:06 pm

Nevada OL coach Ron Hudson (@coachrhud)Nevada offensive line coach Ron Hudson will miss spring football following an open-heart procedure about seven weeks ago.

According to a story in the Reno Gazette-Journal, an elevated heart rate and fatigue caused Hudson, 50, to visit an emergency room a couple months ago.

After a battery of tests, it was determined he had atrial fibrillation, an abnormal heart rhythm characterized by rapid and irregular beating. It would first be treated with medication. That helped, but it didn't fix the issue. So, once Nevada's season ended, he'd get an ablation.
That's a fairly routine, although invasive, surgery in which abnormal heart tissue is melted away. Hudson went in for that surgery Feb. 25. It would be a 45-minute procedure and he'd be good to go.
"I went into the hospital, they put me to sleep and I woke up and said, 'How did it go?'" Hudson said. "They said, 'We didn't do it.' I said, 'Why not?' The doctor said, 'We found a blood clot in your heart.'"

Doctors in Reno feared the blood clot could break off and travel to Hudson’s brain, so Hudson was referred to a specialist in California. Doctors there caught the blood clot before it broke off and stopped the atrial fibrillation.

Hudson will be on blood thinners for at least a year and the normally boisterous coach will have to be fairly tame while the Wolf Pack practices this spring. He’ll be able to return to recruiting in May and will likely be back on the sideline in the fall.

"It puts things into perspective very quickly," Polian told the Reno Gazette-Journal. "The fans and everybody, I don't think they understand the level of commitment the coaches and players give. People tell you it's not life or death, but we take this very seriously. When you see something like that, you take a step back and remember what's really important. Obviously, being a husband and father is the most important thing for him."

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Graham Watson is the editor of Dr. Saturday on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email her at dr.saturday@ymail.com or follow her on Twitter! Follow @YahooDrSaturday

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Author: Graham Watson
Posted: April 20, 2015, 5:35 pm

Indiana defensive tackle Ralph Green III, left, and defensive tackle Nate Hoff, right, sack Iowa quarterback Jake Rudock during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Oct. 11, 2014, in Iowa City, Iowa. (AP Photo/Matthew Putney)Indiana defensive lineman Ralph Green III was arrested early Sunday morning on multiple charges.

According to the Herald-Times, Green, a redshirt junior, was charged with battery, public intoxication and disorderly conduct after allegedly “slapping a 20-year-old woman in the face.”

Police said Green slapped the woman when she “refused to dance” with him.

From the Herald-Times:

According to Bloomington Police Department Capt. Joe Qualters, Green was trying to dance with the victim at a residence in the 1300 block of North Lincoln street. She refused to dance and attempted to get away, Qualters said, causing a disturbance between the woman, her boyfriend and Green. Qualters said Green grabbed her by her waist during the disturbance and slapped her on the right side of her face.

When police arrived on the scene, Green was “yelling belligerently.” Bloomington Police Department Capt. Joe Qualters said Green then “attempted to enter a vehicle through the passenger side and began honking the horn and yelling.”

Officers asked him to stop. When Green exited the vehicle, officers “noticed he had red and watery eyes and was saying back and forth while speaking.” A field sobriety test was conducted and Green registered a .201 blood alcohol content.

Qualters said that the victim had “no marks, redness or swelling,” but wants to pursue charges against Green, who was taken into custody at 1:42 a.m.

After becoming aware of the incident, Indiana announced that Green III has been suspended from football activities.

“Indiana University Athletics and the IU football program are aware of the arrest of Indiana University student-athlete Ralph Green III. We take this situation very seriously as we do all conduct-related issues, on or off the field, among our student-athletes,” the school said in a statement.

“Ralph has been suspended from all football activities effective immediately, and the IU Office of the Dean of Students has been notified of the allegations consistent with Department of Athletics policy. We will continue to gather facts, monitor the legal and university processes, and take further action as the evolving situation warrants.”

The 6-foot-5, 315-pound Green played in 11 games for the Hoosiers last season and registered 19 tackles, 4.5 tackles for loss and one sack. As a redshirt freshman in 2013, Green played in 12 games and made nine starts while recording 25 tackles, a sack and 4.5 tackles for loss. 

For more Indiana news, visit Peegs.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 20, 2015, 5:09 pm

Tyrone Swoopes is still Texas’ starting quarterback.

After Saturday’s spring game, coach Charlie Strong said Swoopes did nothing to lose his starting role and backup Jerrod Heard did nothing to change that.

“I don’t want to turn this into a quarterback controversy,” Strong said according to the Dallas Morning News. “When you look at it, Tyrone has come into the spring as a starter. I don’t know that Heard has done anything yet to unseat him as a starter. I said he’s closed the gap, which is what you want.

“Ty is still the No. 1 guy at this point.”

Swoopes finished the spring game completing 17 of his 31 passes for 159 yards. He had an interception called back by a penalty and a dropped pass in the end zone. He also threw a ball out of bounds that hit a young boy in the face. Strong made Swoopes check on the boy while medics attended to him. The boy was OK.

“I just told him that I was sorry,” Swoopes said. “I burned a ball out of bounds, and I caught him not paying attention. He looked pretty bummed about it.”

Strong said he expects Swoopes, a junior, to be better this season simply because the team around him is better. Texas spent the spring making improvements to the offensive line and changing the offense from a pro-style to an up-tempo spread attack that should play better in the offense-dominant Big 12.

As for Heard, a redshirt freshman, the Texas coaching staff was pleased with his progress this spring, but even he admitted he had a long way to go.

"The game is still fast for me," Heard said. "I really do have to have the team's confidence in me. My job is to show them that when my number is called, I'll be ready."

Heard, who is the more natural fit for the Longhorns’ up-tempo offense, completed 20 of 29 passes for 177 yards. He scrambled for a touchdown and scrambled to covert a fourth down that set up a field goal. But he also fumbled a snap, tossed an interception on an underthrown pass and had a potential interception dropped by a defender.

Strong said he hoped Swoopes would continue to progress throughout the summer so he would be the starter heading into the season opener against Notre Dame.

“The thing about it is I hope I don’t have to go into Notre Dame and start a redshirt freshman,” Strong said.

For more Texas news, visit Orangebloods.com.

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Graham Watson is the editor of Dr. Saturday on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email her at dr.saturday@ymail.com or follow her on Twitter! Follow @YahooDrSaturday

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Author: Graham Watson
Posted: April 20, 2015, 4:40 pm

Baylor offensive guard LaQuan McGowan (80) catches a touchdown pass from quarterback Bryce Petty (14) during the second half of the Cotton Bowl NCAA college football game against Michigan State Thursday, Jan. 1, 2015, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/LM Otero)Baylor is ready to prove that using LaQuan McGowan as a tight end was not a one-time thing.

McGowan, a converted 6-foot-7 guard who weighs in at 400-plus pounds, caught an 18-yard touchdown pass against Michigan State in the Cotton Bowl. Since then, McGowan, who told Fox Sports that he was “425 (pounds) butt naked” and “probably about 440” in pads for the Cotton Bowl, has practiced exclusively at tight end for the Bears and is listed as a co-starter coming out of spring practice.

Baylor head coach Art Briles says the team is ready to unleash McGowan, a fifth-year senior who he has nicknamed “The Annihilator.”

“I don’t have to worry about what I say about him, because no one else has got anybody like him,” Briles told Fox Sports’ Stewart Mandel. “He’s the most unique football player in the United States with his combination of size and athletic skill.

“He’s going to be a dominant player. Not just a guy who jogs out on the field and does his job, he’s going to be dominant in what we ask him to do.”

The Baylor defense got a taste of McGowan, who’s now down to 405 pounds, throughout spring practice. The coaches actually had to put no-contact restrictions on McGowan so he wouldn’t injure his defensive teammates.

“Me and a linebacker (Grant Campbell) went head-to-head and it didn’t end well,” McGowan said. “They’re going to take the chains off (for the first game). I’m going to come out with a full head of steam.”

He also had a 21-yard catch during the Bears' spring game: 

McGowan struggled to get on the field during his first three years with the program. Offensive coordinator Kendal Briles said McGowan had trouble keeping up with the Bears’ fast-paced offense. Now as a tight end, he’ll be able to substitute in-and-out to the point where he can stay fresh.

Kendal Briles, Art Briles’ son, said that tight ends play around “45 to 60 snaps per game” and catch “around 24 to 30 passes” per season in the Bears’ offense. With McGowan (and his huge hands) splitting time with 2014 starter Tre’von Armstead, Art Briles says they think they’ve found the perfect role for McGowan to contribute in a big way.

"I think we've found his niche," said Art Briles. "It's taken four years but we've found the way he can help our football team win games and help himself, and that to me is inspirational. We stereotype these guys in their roles because of their body types, and that's something we have to be careful with."

For more Baylor news, visit SicEmSports.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 20, 2015, 4:00 pm

Ohio State held its spring game Saturday in front of nearly 100,000 fans at the Horseshoe. Before the annual Scarlet-Gray game got underway, fans were entertained with several competitions.

For one, the quarterbacks, along with former Buckeye Troy Smith, competed in a long-toss competition. Cardale Jones beat J.T. Barrett with this insane 74-yard throw. For what it’s worth, Braxton Miller did not participate.

Oh, just Cardale Jones slinging a ball 74 yards: pic.twitter.com/Pdvi48ZP6M

— Land-Grant Holy Land (@Landgrant33) April 18, 2015

Here’s another angle.

The Buckeyes also showcased their circle drill for the fans and Jones got to square off with fellow quarterback Stephen Collier.

Jones is listed at 6-foot-5 and 250 pounds. I wouldn’t want to absorb that hit, but it looks like the 6-foot-4, 225-pound Collier handled it just fine.

Once the game was finally played, Jones threw for 304 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions and led the Gray team to a 17-14 victory. Collier threw for 157 yards, two touchdowns and three interceptions for the Scarlet. Barrett (foot) and Miller (shoulder) are still on the mend and sat out. 

For more Ohio State news, visit BuckeyeGrove.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 20, 2015, 3:03 pm

HOUSTON, TX - OCTOBER 02: Head coach George O'Leary of the UCF Knights waits on the field during the first half of their game against the Houston Cougars at TDECU Stadium on October 2, 2014 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)George O’Leary isn’t a big fan of the usual intrasquad spring games we see across college football each year.

The UCF head coach said Saturday after his team’s scrimmage that he is going to reach out to coaches from Florida schools to see if they'd be interested in playing an exhibition game.

“I’d much rather see the competition level improve that way. Where you can make a true evaluation of where you’re at and give the money to charity,” O’Leary said, per the Associated Press.

O’Leary went with a starters vs. reserves format for the Knights’ spring game and the starters predictably came out on top, 20-6. Though he said it turned out to be “one of the better spring games” UCF has had during his tenure with the program, O’Leary thinks an exhibition with another program would generate more excitement.

“You’re not going to game plan things. You just go out and execute, take the kicking game out of it and I think it would be a lot more fun,” O’Leary said. “At least you’d get a lot more interest in the spring games.”

While the idea sounds good in theory, would other schools go for it? Most fans would most likely be on board with O’Leary’s idea, but opposing coaches are far more concerned about the health of their players than putting on a bigger show for the fans.

For more UCF news, visit UCFSports.com.

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Author: Sam Cooper
Posted: April 20, 2015, 2:29 pm

Ezekiel Elliott has collected another honor stemming from his 2014 season.

The Ohio State running back won the 2014 AAU Sullivan Award on Sunday afternoon. The award is given to the top amateur athlete.

Elliott beat out Shawn Barber, Simone Biles, Meryl Davis and Charlie White, Katie Ledecky and Jahlil Okafor. Barber is a pole vaulter from Akron, Biles is a U.S. gymnast, Davis and White are U.S. ice dancers, Ledecky is a U.S. swimmer and Okafor won the basketball national title with Duke earlier in April.

In his acceptance speech, Elliott said he couldn't imagine winning a gold medal in the Olympics. Ledecky won a gold medal in the 2012 Olympics. He thanked his parents, coaches and teammates at Ohio State.

"Football's a team sport and I'm nothing without my boys around me," Elliott said.

Playing the entire season with a broken left wrist, Elliott was Ohio State's driving force in the final three games of the year as the Buckeyes won the first College Football Playoff. He finished with 1,878 yards and 18 touchdowns.

Last year's winner was former Penn State offensive lineman John Urschel.

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Author: Nick Bromberg
Posted: April 19, 2015, 9:58 pm

Florida defensive back J.C. Jackson is charged with armed robbery after he went over to an acquaintance's residence on Saturday.

According to police, Jackson visited with two men who the occupants of the apartment didn't know. Then Jackson left, leaving the two unknown men at the apartment. One pulled a gun on the residents, took things, and left.

From the Gainesville Sun:

At 3:45 p.m. Jerald Christopher “J.C.” Jackson came to visit an apartment of an acquaintance in a complex at 4400 SW 20th Ave. but entered the home with two men who were unknown to the people who lived there, according to a Gainesville Police Department report. Jackson quickly took off and left the strangers inside, and one of them pulled out a handgun,

The man — not identified in the report — grabbed a bag of suspected marijuana and, with the gun, demanded the three residents lie on the floor and empty their pockets. One resident — whose identifying information was redacted from the report — told GPD officers the man pressed the handgun against his face and demanded to know the location of his supply of drugs and cash, the report states.

Here's @GainesvillePD summary on arrest of Gator football player JC Jackson. pic.twitter.com/BdpwmzjNwV

— Vic Micolucci - WJXT (@WJXTvic) April 19, 2015

According to the police report, $382 was taken. Jackson is charged with robbery with a firearm and is being held on $150,000 bail. He reportedly called the residents of the apartment after he was contacted by police.

Jackson redshirted in 2014 after he suffered a shoulder injury. He was a four-star recruit in the class of 2014 and set to be a possible starter in 2015.

On Christmas Eve, Jackson was grazed by a bullet in a shooting. A native of Immokalee, Fla., Jackson was back home and had a bullet brush past his eyelid when someone shot at the vehicle he was occupying. A high school teammate in the car with Jackson was shot in the face.

For more Florida news, visit InsideTheGators.com.

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Nick Bromberg is the assistant editor of Dr. Saturday on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at nickbromberg@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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Author: Nick Bromberg
Posted: April 19, 2015, 3:40 pm

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