- Sam Cooper at Dr. Saturday52 mins ago
The phrase “Those who stay will become champions” goes back a long way at the University of Michigan, but that didn’t stop in-state rival Michigan State from using it for some well-orchestrated trolling.
Curtis Blackwell, Michigan State’s recruiting director, tweeted a photo of a group of Spartans from the Detroit area with the phrase “Those who have stayed are already champions.” Included are banners from MSU’s Big Ten championships in 2010, 2013 and 2015 and another fact: “Since Mark Dantonio’s arrival in 2007, every Spartan that has stayed at MSU for four years has won a Big Ten Championship.”
- Nick Bromberg at Dr. Saturday1 hr ago
We conclude our conference preview series with a look at the teams in Group of Five conferences as well as those teams who play without a conference.
Houston emerged in 2015 as the clear choice to represent the non-Power Five conference teams in the New Year’s Six Bowls. Will the choice be as clear-cut this year? The Cougars are certainly starting the season with a good reputation; don’t discount preseason rankings at the end of the season.
Boise State could challenge for the Group of Five spot too, assuming a key defensive position is addressed adequately during the season. And don’t sleep on San Diego State, either.
Here’s how we see the Group of Five conferences shaking out (as well as a breakdown of the four independent teams) in predicted conference standings that are guaranteed to be incorrect by the end of the season.
- Graham Watson at Dr. Saturday4 hrs ago
The girlfriend of Notre Dame cornerback Devin Butler said the accusations that Butler was violent with police officers outside of a South Bend bar are false.
Butler’s girlfriend Haleigh Bailey, told the South Bend Tribune she was with Butler when the incident occurred and that the reports are not accurate.
“I was there that entire night,” Bailey told the paper. “Reports say that everyone left the scene but I was still there and saw everything officers did to Devin.
“He was abused, and wrongly arrested. He never tackled an officer and he never intentionally hurt anyone. He had no reason to be tazed because he was never resisting arrest, and he was already on the ground complying when they tazed him.”
- Sam Cooper at Dr. Saturday5 hrs ago
Like the Big 12 in 2014, the Pac-12 was the lone Power Five conference to miss out on a berth in the College Football Playoff last year. Stanford and Utah started out 8-1, but were both upset Nov. 14, effectively burying their chance (and the conference’s) at college football supremacy. The Pac-12 had seven teams with at least eight wins in 2015 and the league looks to be chock full of parity again, but could that be its downfall?
A two-loss team has yet to make it into the CFP; the Pac-12 could fall victim to its own depth (and some tough non-conference scheduling) with the league’s best teams beating up on each other. But that depth is a two-way street. If a Pac-12 team ends its regular season with only one loss, there’s no way it misses out, right?
Offensive Player of the Year: Christian McCaffrey, RB, Stanford Defensive Player of the Year: Budda Baker, DB, Washington Newcomer of the Year: Davis Webb, QB, Cal
NORTH DIVISION (in predicted order of finish)
2015 record: 12-2 (8-1 Pac-12) 2015 finish: 1st North, Pac-12 champions
- Nick Bromberg at Dr. Saturday5 hrs ago
North Carolina State QB Ryan Finley has been granted a sixth year of eligibility by the NCAA.
Finley transferred to NC State from Boise State. He got the medical redshirt because he missed 10 games in 2015 because of an ankle injury and also missed most of 2014 because of a shoulder injury. His ankle injury at the beginning of last season opened the door for then-freshman Brett Rypien to take over the starting gig for the Broncos.
The QB transferred after the 2015 season and is eligible immediately because he graduated from Boise State. The addition of a sixth year means he’s eligible for 2017 and 2018 as well.
Per the team’s depth chart, Finley is also listed as the co-starter at quarterback for the Wolfpack along with Jalan McClendon. The two are vying to replace Jacoby Brissette, the team’s starter last season.
- Nick Bromberg at Dr. Saturday8 hrs ago
One Iowa professor believes the school’s mascot looks too angry and wants the bird’s facial expressions to be happier.
Resmiye Oral, a pediatrics professor, wrote an email to the Iowa athletic department regarding her feelings towards the mascot, which has a toothy facial expression. From the Iowa City Press-Citizen:
“I believe incoming students should be met with welcoming, nurturing, calm, accepting and happy messages,” Resmiye Oral, a clinical professor of pediatrics at UI, wrote recently in an email to UI athletic department officials. “And our campus community is doing a great job in that regard when it comes to words. However, Herky’s angry, to say the least, faces conveying an invitation to aggressivity and even violence are not compatible with the verbal messages that we try to convey to and instill in our students and campus community.”
She told the paper she wants the bird to show more emotional variety.
- Nick Bromberg at Dr. Saturday8 hrs ago
It looks like we could see Georgia running back Nick Chubb get some playing time in the first game of the season.
Georgia coach Kirby Smart said Wednesday that Chubb could get some carries in the game. Chubb was sidelined for the remainder of the 2015 season in October of last year when hesuffered a nasty left knee injury against Tennessee.
“I think everybody’s in line to get carries,” Smart said via UGA Sports and NBC 11. “Nick’s in line, Elijah’s (Holyfield) in line, Brian’s (Herrien) in line, Brendan Douglas is in line, Tae Crowder’s in line. All those guys are in line to get carries.”
- Nick Bromberg at Dr. Saturday19 hrs ago
This is a stretch, Larry Fedora.
Former Illinois coach Tim Beckman is now a volunteer coach at North Carolina. Beckman spent the 2015 season out of football after he was fired a week before the season as multiple former players reported mistreatment.
Fedora, the North Carolina head coach, said Wednesday that Beckman didn’t lose his job over the allegations of mistreatment. Rather it was because he wasn’t successful enough.
“I don’t believe everything I read, all right,” Fedora said via the News & Observer. “I know Tim. I know his side of the story, also. So I was comfortable with it. If I wouldn’t have been, obviously I wouldn’t have brought him. I wouldn’t have allowed him to be in our program.
“But I was very comfortable with it. I don’t have any issues with it at all.”
Fedora also had this to say.
- Dr. Saturday at Dr. Saturday22 hrs ago
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Rutgers students could leave the team’s home opener with $1,000.
OK, the probability isn’t too high. But it exists. The school announced the return of its kickoff contest against Howard on Sep. 10.
Rutgers announced today that 100 students in attendance at its home opener will win $1K each if the team returns the opening kickoff for TD.
— Dr. Saturday (@YahooDrSaturday) August 24, 2016
Students get free tickets to the game and the contest applies to the opening kickoff of the second half if Rutgers elects to kick off to start the game. If Rutgers does return the kick for a TD, it will randomly select 100 students to win $1,000 each.
- Nick Bromberg at Dr. Saturday23 hrs ago
Stanford quarterback Ryan Burns will start the team’s opening game of the season vs. Kansas State on Sep. 2.
Senior Ryan Burns will be Stanford's starting QB in the season opener against Kansas State, Keller Chryst to see action vs. Wildcats
— Alan George (@treeSIDjorge) August 24, 2016
Burns was competing with Keller Chryst for the right to succeed Kevin Hogan at the position. Hogan was drafted in the fifth round by the Kansas City Chiefs in the 2016 NFL draft.
Chryst was considered the favorite for the job after throwing nine passes in 2015. A sophomore in 2016, Chryst was the only other quarterback besides Hogan to throw a pass last season.
“Both have played really well. We’re going to start with Ryan and support him as best we can,” Stanford coach David Shaw said via the San Jose Mercury News. “Keller will get his section of the game plan. He’s going to play, not just run the ball.”