The possibility of Marcos Ambrose joining forces with Roger Penske in the Australian V8 Supercar series is official.
Team Penske announced Sunday night it had partnered with Dick Johnson Racing for the 2015 season and that Ambrose would drive the No. 17 entry.
“Team Penske is excited to partner with Dick Johnson Racing to compete in the V8 Supercars Championship starting next season,” Roger Penske said in a statement. “We believe in building our businesses through racing and our success on the track. With our new business ventures in Australia, it makes sense to showcase our brands through the V8 Supercars Championship and the opportunity to work with DJR and Marcos Ambrose convinced us to go forward.”
Ambrose's current NASCAR team, Richard Petty Motorsports, announced Saturday that Ambrose wouldn't be returning to the team in 2015. Shortly after the announcement, Penske said it had an announcement scheduled for early in the week involving the Supercars series.
Ambrose, a native Australian, was successful in V8 Supercars before he moved to NASCAR. He won the series championship in 2003 and 2004.
Arizona State's Taylor Kelly hurt his right foot against Colorado Saturday night, and there's no indication on if he'll be ready to play against UCLA.
According to AZCentral.com, a spokesperson for No. 16 ASU said coach Todd Graham would not be discussing Kelly's injury before Arizona State plays the Bruins on Thursday, Sep. 25. After the game, Graham said he was "very concerned"about Kelly's injury per the AP, though he later changed his tone in his radio interview and said Kelly would be fine.
Three top 10s in the first three races would have virtually guaranteed Aric Almirola's progression into the next three races of the Chase for the Sprint Cup.
He was working incredibly well on getting 1/3 of the way there Sunday at Chicago. Unfortunately, his engine didn't want to make it the entire way.
Almirola had moved himself into the top 10 among drivers like Jimmie Johnson and Dale Earnhardt Jr. when his car started spewing smoke on the backstretch on lap 231. His day was over.
After climbing from his car, he was greeted by team owner Richard Petty. Almirola said that it was the first engine failure he had in his three-year tenure at Richard Petty Motorports and per Racing Reference, he's correct. He'd never retired from a race because of an engine until Sunday.
So proud of my team! We rose to the occasion today and proved we can compete in the chase. Heartbroken for sure but they knew we were there
Brad Keselowski saw Kevin Harvick and Kyle Larson battling for the lead ahead of him and as Larson went high and Harvick went low heading into turn one, Keselowski took the middle.
It was the right option.
Keselowski stormed past both drivers and held on for the lead through a last restart to win the first race of the 2014 Chase for the Sprint Cup on Sunday at Chicago.
Larson and Harvick were having a fantastic battle off a restart with 18 laps to go. Larson had the lead and Harvick, who restarted second, was able to hang with him. The two ran side by side for virtually the entirety of two laps, but the great racing came at a price.
Keselowski was hanging around in third and got an incredible draft of the huge hole in the air the two were creating with 16 laps to go. As Harvick headed to the white line and Larson went towards the wall, Keselowski cut the middle and was clear by the time he was on the backstretch.
"I'm not really sure," Keselowski responded when asked how he made the pass in victory lane. "I'll have to watch the ESPN replay to figure it out. But we obviously had a great car ... these Fords have really come together for a strong Chase run."
After Week 2 provided us a disastrously bad sample for the Big Ten, Week 3 was a good opportunity to gauge the Big 12 as seven of the league's 10 teams played opponents from other Power Five conferences. What did we glean? It was a good week for the Big 12, even if the league won't challenge the SEC or Pac-12 for the title of the best conference, and it's better than the Big Ten and likely the ACC. In the words of Dennis Green, they are who we thought they were.
Let's start with the good.
Oklahoma did what it was supposed to against Tennessee at home, jumping out to a big lead and controlling the game. Oklahoma State, led by backup QB Daxx Garman, beat a UTSA team that gave Arizona a close game and beat Houston.
There isn't a QB controversy brewing in Westwood, Calif., but if UCLA's Brett Hundley is out for an extended period of time, UCLA now knows it can win a big game with Jerry Neuheisel at QB.
Hundley injured his left elbow early in the first quarter of Saturday's game against Texas and was replaced by Neuheisel, the son of former UCLA coach Rick Neuheisel. And in three minutes left in the fourth quarter, Neuheisel tossed a 33-yard touchdown pass to Jordan Payton to give the No. 12 Bruins a 20-17 win over Texas.
Hundley's elbow was hurt on a QB run. As he fell to the ground on top of a Texas defender, his left elbow took the brunt of the impact as he braced himself with his left hand. He immediately jogged to the sidelines and was pushed down by coach Jim Mora for an injury timeout.
At halftime, Hundley was ruled doubtful for the game and spent the second half with a bag of ice on his elbow.
For most of his time replacing Hundley, Neuheisel leaned on a running game that racked up 217 yards. Though Texas quickly realized the lack of downfield passing and keyed on the run game.
We'll never know where the football in South Carolina QB Dylan Thompson's hand really was when he was down on the ground under a mass of linemen in the fourth quarter of Saturday's game against Georgia.
But the spot he got was enough as South Carolina converted a fourth-and-inches with 1:22 left in the fourth quarter to hold on for a 38-35 win and guarantee the Bulldogs wouldn't get the ball again.
How close was it? Officially, it was this close.
Spotting the football can be an inexact science, especially when it comes to QB sneaks. The ball was at midfield and Thompson simply needed to get part of the ball to Georgia's side of the field for a first down. While he was wrapped up in the backfield, Thompson didn't lose yardage. But he didn't gain much either, at least what officials could tell from the pile.
When the measurement was done, Georgia thought it had stopped South Carolina while South Carolina got the first down.
Louisville and Virginia were a bit chippy as the teams entered the locker room for halftime.
They both headed to the tunnel at the same time as Virginia led 10-7, and players started exchanging words. It went from there, as one Virginia player grabbed a Louisville player, who looks like he started swinging.
Officials quickly got into the middle of the brouhaha and threw flags. But the penalties offset as the second half kickoff was from the usual spot. There were no ejections either.
The teams were acting like long-time ACC rivals in the skirmish though this was the first time they had played each other as members of the ACC and the first time the teams had played each other since 1989, or before any of the players on each roster were born.
This will be a meeting that happens annually from now on though. The two teams are set as rivals in the ACC's 14-team format. Virginia won Saturday's meeting 23-21 and its fans stormed the field after the game.
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Rutgers is very jazzed about its first Big Ten home game and its fans are expressing their joy in some interesting ways.
The Scarlet Knights hosted Penn State on Saturday. The most, uh, prolific fan was a shirtless man with a cowboy hat. He spelled out "Hello Big Ten" on his chest in tan lines.
This game is attracting all types of fans. This guy put tape on and then went to the beach. 90 minutes later: voila pic.twitter.com/9av2AfI7h2
He also had the tan lines on his back spelling out "Welcome to Rutgers."
How long do you think it took to spell that out? And do you think someone helped him? Otherwise he's doing it upside down or in the mirror. (We're also not going to rule out the possibility that this isn't his first time embarking on this type of endeavor.)
Isaiah Ford's TD catch was about the only thing that went right for Virginia Tech in the first half against East Carolina.
Ford made an incredible 21-yard grab with a defender draped all over him late in the second quarter as the Hokies trailed 21-0. However, look closely at the GIF, we're not sure it was complete.
We're not taking anything away from Ford's effort. The defender on the play was called for pass interference (a penalty that was ultimately declined), but the ball appeared to hit the ground as Ford brought it into his other hand.
After a replay review, the call on the field stood due to a lack of conclusive evidence.
Inconclusive may be a good descriptor of the Hokies this season after the first half against East Carolina. A week after beating Ohio State on the road, the Virginia Tech looked flat out incompetent against ECU for most of the first half. The defense that stifled the Buckeyes and QB J.T. Barrett struggled against ECU's Shane Carden. Carden threw for nearly 300 yards in the first half and compiled all three of ECU's scores.