Kentucky undergraduate students have some added motivation - not that they need it - to attend the annual Blue-White scrimmage Tuesday night thanks to coach John Calipari.
Two lucky students will be chosen by Calipari and he will pay for their spring tuition. He used his Twitter account to publicize his plan Monday, but he didn't mention how he will choose the two students.
Attention UK students: I’m going to award two students who attend our Blue-White Scrimmage by paying for their undergraduate spring tuition.
— John Calipari (@UKCoachCalipari) October 28, 2013
It's not like Kentucky is hurting for fans in the seats for the scrimmage. Last year's blue-white game attracted 12,016 to Rupp Arena. Calipari also has the lure of one of the best recruiting classes in history this year and his team is ranked No. 1 in the preseason coaches' poll.
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Missouri earned the final spot in the Associated Press poll this week thanks to its 5-0 start and then justified the ranking by upsetting No. 7 Georgia 41-26 on the road Saturday.
Still undefeated (6-0 overall, 2-0 SEC), the question now becomes: can the Tigers remain ranked and contend for the SEC East Division crown without starting quarterback James Franklin? Missouri's senior QB suffered a separated shoulder in the second half and watched from the sideline as his teammates finished off the win.
Coach Gary Pinkel confirmed the injury after the game but told reporters he did not know how long Franklin would be out. But later in the day a report from CBSSports writer Bruce Feldman suggested Franklin might miss as much as six weeks, which would mean the Tigers would be without their starter and team leader for the rest of the regular season.
#Mizzou QB James Franklin is expected to be out for at least the next 6 wks, probably longer w a Grade 2 shoulder separation, per source.
— Bruce Feldman (@BFeldmanCBS) October 12, 2013
Top-ranked Alabama entered the season with quarterback A.J. McCarron and running back T.J. Yeldon receiving some preseason Heisman Trophy buzz.
But wide receiver Christion Jones stole the show as the two-time defending national champions looked ready to make a run at a three-peat - at least defensively - in a 35-10 win over Virginia Tech.
Jones returned a punt 74 yards for a touchdown in the opening minute of the game. He caught two passes for 48 yards and another score and also returned a kickoff 93 yards for a touchdown. He finished with 256 all-purpose yards.
Jones, a junior from Adamsville, Ala., nearly equaled his career touchdown total in the opener. He scored four times as a sophomore last season.
Alabama's offense will need to improve going forward. It managed only 21 points but the defense held the Hokies scoreless in the second half. Virginia Tech found an uncharacteristic soft spot in the first quarter when Trey Edmunds ran for a 77-yard score.
There have been plenty of uniform tweaks and changes in the college football offseason. Some good, some not so inspiring.
The University of Tennessee and adidasUS unveiled TECHFIT ShockWeb alternate uniforms in a Smokey color few associate with the school but that is in the Vols' color scheme. These are some of the better new uniforms we've seen this year.
The Tennessee state outline is used above player names on the back and the famous checkerboard pattern in the end zones at Neyland Stadium is used in the orange jersey numbers. The Vols will wear their traditional orange underneath in a base layer that also uses the checkerboard pattern.
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Jameis Winston is the favorite to win the starting quarterback job at Florida State this fall and he's already guarding against temptations that success might bring.
Winston talked with reporters Sunday at Seminoles media day and one of those media members asked him about avoiding "Manziel disease." It was a reference to Texas A&M Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel who has had a whirlwind offseason of partying, traveling and most recently for alleged potential NCAA violations.
"If I ever get Manziel disease, I want all of you to smack me in the head with your microphones," Winston said.
It's important to note that Winston was repeating the term "Manziel disease" used by the reporter and not coining it himself. It certainly wasn't a planned personal attack on Manziel.
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Injured Louisville guard Kevin Ware is already beginning to rehabilitate his broken right leg suffered in the NCAA tournament.
Ware tweeted a photo of himself riding a stationary bike today with a message quoting fellow injured basketball star Kobe Bryant's Facebook message last week. The tweet from Ware proved poignant in light of the bombings later in the day at the Boston Marathon.
Ware regularly uses his Twitter account to share inspiring messages for more than 177,000 followers, most of whom began to follow him after he suffered a horrific injury in an Elite Eight win over Duke.
— Kevin Ware (@_billionairebev) April 15, 2013
Ware underwent surgery several weeks ago to repair a compound fracture of his right tibia and had a rod inserted into his leg. He sat court side at the Final Four and cheered on his teammates as they won the national title against Michigan in Atlanta.
Louisville won its third men's basketball national title in the Georgia Dome on Monday, beating Michigan 82-76, and back home fans took to the streets to celebrate.
Based on early reports from the Louisville media, it appears Cardinals fans weren't following in the footsteps of Kentucky fans who burned couches and overturned cars a year ago when the Wildcats beat Louisville in the Final Four to advance to the 2012 national title game.
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That might change as the party continues into the night.
Louisville fans might want to save a little energy. They could have another celebration Tuesday night when the Louisville women take on Connecticut in the women's national championship game.
Few athletes or coaches have enjoyed the kind of day Louisville coach Rick Pitino experienced Saturday when he coached his Cardinals to a victory in the final four, advancing to the national title game, while a horse he co-owns named Goldencents won the Santa Anita Derby, earning a spot in next month's Kentucky Derby.
Louisville is the favorite to win it all as the No. 1 overall seed in the NCAA tournament, but Goldencents went off at Santa Anita at 6-1 odds.
The Cardinals overcame a 12-point second-half deficit to rally and beat Wichita State. Goldencents held off a late charge from race favorite Flashback to earn his victory in the 11/8-mile race in 1:48.76.
Goldencents is trained by Doug O'Neill, who trained 2012 Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes winner I'll Have Another.
Pitino has named three horses after players on this season's Louisville team, including Russdiculous (named after guard Russ Smith), Siva (named after guard Peyton Siva) and Gorgui (named after center Gorgui Dieng).
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Michigan might have been voted least likely to succeed from the Big Ten Conference when the NCAA tournament began two weeks ago.
The Wolverines struggled down the stretch of the regular season and lost in ugly fashion to Wisconsin in the Big Ten tournament. But they regrouped and found the offensive mojo that led them to a No. 1 ranking earlier in the year and blew away Florida 79-59 Sunday in the Elite Eight.
The Wolverines advanced to the Final Four for the first time since 1993 and the days of the Fab Five.
The victory is a measure of redemption for the Big Ten, which sent seven teams to the tournament with the other six falling short of the Final Four. The Big Ten has been considered the strongest conference in the nation all season.
Freshman guard Nik Stauskas provided the spark, scoring 19 points in the first half and finishing with 22, tying his career high.
Stauskas hadn't scored 20 points in a game since scoring establishing that career mark on Dec. 1 against Bradley.
It's up to you Michigan.
The overall strength of the Big Ten Conference has been one of the major story lines of this college basketball season, but after Ohio State lost in the West Region final Saturday night to upstart Wichita State, the Big Ten is in danger of being shut out of the Final Four.
So much for all the hubbub earlier this week about a possible All-Big Ten Final Four.
Michigan is the last Big Ten team remaining from seven that played in the Round of 64 and four that advanced to the Sweet 16. The Wolverines, a team many believed was ripe to be upset early entering the tournament, must beat Florida on Sunday to capture the South Region and advance to their first Final Four since those Fab Five guys made history in the early 1990s.
If the Wolverines come up short -- they are the underdog -- as fellow Big Ten Sweet 16 teams Ohio State, Indiana and Michigan State did, some will be tempted to label the conference as overrated.
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