Graham Watson

  • Heisman Watch: Washington's Jake Browning faces the MUSS

    Graham Watson at Dr. Saturday 14 hrs ago

    This week’s Heisman Watch focuses on Washington quarterback Jake Browning. He hasn’t gotten a ton of pub, perhaps it’s that West Coast bias thing, but he’s definitely a candidate to watch. He’s been carving up Pac-12 defenses, but he’ll have his work cut out for him this weekend in front of a raucous Utah crowd.

    Also, this week marks the first time we’ve put a Group of Five player on the list. Again, he might suffer from that same West Coast bias, but he’s definitely worth talking about.

    Here’s the rest of Heisman Watch for Week 9:

    Lamar Jackson had a rough game against Duke in Week 7, but rebounded masterfully against N.C. State last week while throwing for 355 yards and three touchdowns, and rushing for 76 yards and a score. Jackson’s four touchdowns broke the touchdowns responsible for record and he’s showing no signs of stopping. Jackson should have another excellent week against a Virginia team that has one of the worst total and scoring defenses in the country.

    – – – – – – –

  • Jim Harbaugh's yearly $9 million contract makes him the nation's highest-paid coach

    Graham Watson at Dr. Saturday 17 hrs ago

    Nick Saban is no longer the nation’s highest-paid college football coach.

    According to USA Today’s annual release of coaching salaries, Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh will earn more than $9 million in 2016 ($9,004,000). That’s a big jump from a year ago, when Harbaugh was making $7,004,000 and trailed Saban by less than $100,000.

    Part of the jump is thanks to a life insurance loan Harbaugh agreed to back in August. In that contract restructuring, Harbaugh makes $5 million as a base salary and then an additional $4 million as a loan against a premium on a life insurance policy taken out by the university. Harbaugh then receives an additional $2 million for each of the next five years as part of the loan. The $4 million he receives in 2016 is paid in increments. He received $2 million on June 3 and will receive the other $2 million if he’s still the Wolverines’ coach on Dec. 6.

    Saban, who has long been the salary torchbearer on this yearly list, is second with $6,939,395, followed by Ohio State’s Urban Meyer ($6,003,000), Oklahoma’s Bob Stoops ($5,550,000) and Florida State’s Jimbo Fisher ($5,250,000).

    – – – – – – –

  • Emails show LSU thought handling of game against Florida was 'a joke'

    Graham Watson at Dr. Saturday 1 day ago

    LSU athletic director Joe Alleva, Board of Supervisors athletic committee chairman Blake Chatelain and team spokesman Michael Bonnette were among school officials upset with the way the SEC handled the LSU-Florida game during Hurricane Matthew.

    In a series of emails obtained by WRBZ-TV, Alleva and Bonnette called the situation “a joke” in the wake of Georgia-South Carolina being rescheduled for Oct. 9 and the LSU-Florida game being postponed indefinitely. Both games were supposed to be played on Oct. 8, but were forced to reschedule because of the impending weather.

    As early as Oct. 4, when it became evident Hurricane Matthew was going to alter the game schedule, Alleva offered several options to play the contest, including playing at a neutral site. But Florida athletic director Jeremy Foley declined all requests and was sure the game would be played in Gainesville on Saturday.

    During the email chain from Oct. 6, which was when the official postponments started to become public, Chatelain asked Alleva whether he thought Florida wanted to play the game as much as LSU did?

  • Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly disappointed in AD's vote of confidence

    Graham Watson at Dr. Saturday 1 day ago

    Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly said Tuesday he was disappointed that athletic director Jack Swarbrick had to give him a vote of confidence last Friday.

    Notre Dame started the season ranked in the top 10, but are now 2-5 coming off a bye week and the groans about the coaching situation have been persistent. But Swarbrick didn’t flinch. He said in no uncertain terms that he was sticking by Kelly.

    “Brian will lead this team out of the tunnel opening day next year,” Swarbrick said. “I can tell you I continue to have complete confidence in Brian. I think you really see what you’ve got in a coach with how they manage times like this, and I think he has done a great job of it.”

    While Kelly was appreciative of his athletic director’s words, he was unhappy they had to be said in the first place.

    Kelly also said he could empathize with how fans were feeling. He said the Irish’s issues were complex, but stopped short of calling them frustrating.

    Kelly is 57-28 with Notre Dame. His best season came in 2012 when the Irish went 12-1 after losing to Alabama in the national championship game.

    More NCAAF coverage from Yahoo Sports:

    – – – – – – –

  • Boise State remains undefeated despite turnovers, crazy finish

    Graham Watson at Dr. Saturday 6 days ago

    Boise State remained undefeated after squeaking by BYU 28-27 on Thursday, but the game was not without its last-second drama.

    On BYU’s final series, the Cougars drove from their own 8-yard line to get in range for a 44-yard field goal, which they opted to take on second down with 15 seconds remaining. Boise State blocked the kick and thought it had the game won, but BYU recovered the block and because it was only second down, it still had two plays and 10 seconds remaining.

    Unfortunately for BYU, it was not able to recreate the magic it had in this game last year when it beat the Broncos with a Hail Mary as time expired, but both teams tried their best to make the game equally as entertaining.

    BYU forced five Boise State turnovers, including two pick-sixes that helped give the Cougars a lead in the first half. However, the BYU offense wasn’t much help. Quarterback Taysom Hill completed 21 of 42 passes for 187 yards and one rushing touchdown. Hill looked good on the final drive, but he took an ill-advised sack that ultimately pushed the field goal back.

    More college football coverage on Yahoo Sports:

    – – – – – – –

  • BYU tried the worst fake punt from its own end zone

    Graham Watson at Dr. Saturday 6 days ago

    BYU tried what could easily be called the worst fake punt of the 2016 season on Thursday when it tried to fool the Boise State defense from inside their own end zone.

    This is the worst fake punt of all time. End of discussion.

    — Kyle Bonagura (@BonaguraESPN) October 21, 2016

    Coach Kalani Sitake justified the move by saying at halftime “on film, we thought we had it.” Well, they didn’t have it, not even close to having it, the play failed miserably and Boise State should have had the ball on the 1-yard line were it not for a unsportsmanlike conduct penalty that backed the Broncos up to the 17.

    However, in a strange twist of events, that penalty actually seemed to turn the game in BYU’s favor. Boise State couldn’t get its offense started and missed the ensuing field goal. After BYU did little on offense, the Cougars defense grabbed its second pick-six of the game to take the lead 17-14. And then, BYU forced a fumble on Boise State’s next possession.

    There’s no doubt that was exactly how BYU coach Kalani Sitake saw that working out.

    – – – – – – –

  • Virginia Tech takes control of ACC Coastal with 37-16 win against Miami

    Graham Watson at Dr. Saturday 6 days ago

    Virginia Tech took control of the ACC Coastal Division on Thursday night with a 37-16 win against Miami.

    The game started as a defensive duel with both teams trading field goals in the first quarter, but Virginia Tech settled in and took a 16-3 lead before Miami quarterback Brad Kaaya found Braxton Berrios in the end zone with 19 seconds remaining before halftime.

    But the second half was all Virginia Tech. The Hokies scored on their second and third possessions, and while Miami did get a touchdown in the quarter, it either punted or turned the ball over on downs on five of their six second-half possessions. Much of that was because of Virginia Tech defensive front, which notched seven sacks in the contest.

    Virginia Tech rebounded from last week’s upset loss against Syracuse and now hold wins against North Carolina and the Hurricanes, two of the top contenders for the division crown. The Hokies will travel to Pitt next week.

    For more Virginia Tech news, visit

    – – – – – – –

  • Virginia Tech executes the rare fullback-to-fullback TD pass (Video)

    Graham Watson at Dr. Saturday 6 days ago

    During the third quarter of Virginia Tech’s game against Miami, the Hokies decided to get creative on offense and allow their fullback to take the lead.

    Sam Rogers, who already had a career-long 52-yard reception earlier in the game, took the handoff from quarterback Jerod Evans, faked the rush, and then tossed a 13-yard pass to fellow fullback Steven Peoples for the score.

    Not sure the last time college football saw a fullback-to-fullback pass, but this was pretty awesome.

    The score gave the Hokies a 30-16 advantage and they ultimately won the game 37-16.

    For more Virginia Tech news, visit

    – – – – – – –

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

  • Once top recruit Gunner Kiel to make his first 2016 start against East Carolina

    Graham Watson at Dr. Saturday 6 days ago

    Senior quarterback Gunner Kiel will make his first start of the 2016 season on Saturday when Cincinnati meets East Carolina, coach Tommy Tuberville announced on his radio show Thursday.

    Kiel was a two-year starter for the Bearcats in 2014 and 2015, but he suffered a major head injury on Sept. 24 against Memphis and hasn’t been able to consistently regain that starters’ form.

    He’s attempted just 11 passes this season and has spent most of the year third on the depth chart behind Hayden Moore and Ross Trail. But the Bearcats are looking for some sort of spark after losing two straight and three of the last four. Cincinnati ranks 105 th nationally in scoring offense with just 23 points per game, and the quarterbacks have thrown 10 interceptions to just eight touchdowns.

    This is an offense that was one of the nation’s most potent a year ago. It ranked sixth nationally in passing and total offense. It averaged 33.8 points per game.

    Perhaps, Tuberville is hoping Kiel, who was once one of the nation’s most sought after quarterbacking recruits, can help rekindle last season’s magic and get the Bearcats back on track for the second half of the year.

    – – – – – – –

  • Heisman Watch: Lamar Jackson faces tough NC State defense

    Graham Watson at Dr. Saturday 7 days ago

    With all of the Heisman candidates either winning or not playing last weekend, there was little change in our Heisman Watch. This week, the spotlight shifts to Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson, who will have a tough matchup against NC State this week. This is also an opportunity for J.T. Barrett and Jake Browning to make up ground on Deshaun Watson.

    Here’s a look at this week’s Heisman Watch:

    Lamar Jackson did not have his greatest game against Duke last week, but he did have the all-important go-ahead touchdown, which helped the Cardinals to a 24-14 win. In that game, Jackson completed just 50 percent of his passes for 181 yards and rushed 21 times for 144 yards. He had two touchdowns. He’ll face a much tougher opponent this week in NC State, which has the No. 5 rushing defense in the country and 18 sacks.

    A bye week could not come at a better time for Deshaun Watson, who had a dismal performance against NC State and was a missed field goal from being knocked out of the playoff picture. In that game, Watson threw his first-ever pick-six, but he still managed to complete 75 percent of his passes for 378 yards and two touchdowns and rush for a score.

    – – – – – – –