- Sam Cooper at Dr. Saturday2 hrs ago
Kent State announced that starting center Jason Bitsko died unexpectedly Wednesday morning. He was just 21 years old.
According to a release from the school, Bitsko was “found unresponsive in his bedroom” at his apartment around 9 a.m. Police believe the cause of death to be “an undetermined medical issue.”
Bitsko, a redshirt junior, was in his fourth season with the Kent State program. He started all 12 games at center for the Golden Flashes in 2013 and was set to continue that role in 2014.
"Kent State University and the entire Kent community mourns his passing," said Kent State athletic director Joel Nielsen. "We are heartbroken by the news of Jason's death. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family, friends, teammates and everyone whose lives he touched."
Bitsko, a native of Huber Heights, Ohio, did not appear at Wednesday morning’s practice and “calls were placed to Bitsko’s roommate.” The roommate then found Bitsko in his bed and called 911. Police arrived at the scene “within three minutes of the call,” but he could not be revived.
- Sam Cooper at Dr. Saturday3 hrs ago
The name of the man who led the Florida Atlantic football program from the start will now grace the field at FAU Stadium.
The university announced Wednesday that the field at FAU Stadium in Boca Raton, Fla., will be named Howard Schnellenberger Field. Schnellenberger coached the Owls during their first 11 seasons, leading the program from the Division I-AA (FCS) level into the Division I-A (FBS) Sun Belt Conference in 2005.
Upon retiring in 2011, Schnellenberger registered a 158-151-3 record as FAU’s head coach. The decision to name the field after him was approved by FAU’s Board of Trustees Wednesday morning.
“I am humbled beyond belief that the University would bestow this great honor on the Schnellenberger family, and me personally,” said Schnellenberger. “This is probably the highlight of my coaching career. Thanks to the FAU Board of Trustees, the University, the fans, the players and the coaches that were an integral part of this.”
The school said in a release that Schnellenberger will be honored before the Owls’ home opener against Tulsa on September 13 – the start of the fourth season in FAU Stadium.
- Nick Bromberg at Dr. Saturday3 hrs ago
Gary Andersen, Les Miles is going to play your game.
After the Wisconsin coach said he wasn't going to name a starter until before the season-opener against LSU on August 30, Miles countered Tuesday and said he's going to wait to name a starter too.
LSU's quarterback battle is between Anthony Jennings and Brandon Harris and the decision likely won't be made public until before the game.
“We’ll tell the starter probably that Thursday [Aug. 28] when we put together the final list of starters, Miles said after a team scrimmage on Tuesday (via WWLTV.com).
Miles likes to be shifty and crafty and has maintained his stance on the battle since the spring so this could be a simple smokescreen. But he said Tuesday there was no separation between the two players.
- Sam Cooper at Dr. Saturday3 hrs ago
The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge has helped raise more than $30 million for the ALS Association (ALSA) in the last month. College football coaches and programs around the country have been participating, but for one SEC player, the movement means more.
Georgia senior offensive lineman Watts Dantzler lost his father, former UGA letterman Danny Dantzler, to ALS five years ago. Watching the Ice Bucket Challenge spread across the country has been incredible for his family.
“It’s such a terrible disease,” said Dantzler, per the Macon Telegraph. “With everybody helping out, tons of celebrities and stuff, it’s skyrocketed the normal donations, which is awesome. Hopefully that can make headway for an advancement of some things that can help slow it down or completely stop the disease.”
- Nick Bromberg at Dr. Saturday5 hrs ago
Louisville defensive coordinator Todd Grantham said he had a simple response when he heard of the report that said there was tension between him and Louisville coach Bobby Petrino.
"You know what, I have not seen the report," Grantham told Football Scoop. "I heard about it and you know, we're in camp, so we're busy. Truthfully I kind of laughed it off and went on to a meeting."
After Football Scoop gave Grantham a summation of the article, he flatly denied it. Sports Illustrated said Monday that there had been multiple feuds between Grantham and Petrino and Petrino would have gotten rid of Grantham if it wasn't for the five-year contract he signed in the offseason at Louisville after leaving Georgia.
- Sam Cooper at Dr. Saturday5 hrs ago
Earlier in the month, Notre Dame announced that offensive coordinator Mike Denbrock would miss the first few weeks of preseason camp after undergoing an undisclosed medical procedure. Tuesday it was revealed that Denbrock, in his first year as Notre Dame’s OC, has prostate cancer.
The cancer was discovered in June after a blood test showed “very elevated” levels of prostate-specific-antigen. Surgery was scheduled soon after and caused him to miss the beginning of camp, but at media day Tuesday, Denbrock said he is feeling much better, though not quite at 100 percent.
Understandably, he’s had to scale back his work load some as the recovery process continues, but he said that he is “feeling stronger every day.”
- Nick Bromberg at Dr. Saturday5 hrs ago
Jack Hoffman, the boy who scored a touchdown in Nebraska's 2013 spring game, starts treatment for a reoccurrence of his cancer Thursday. After practice Tuesday, the Nebraska football team wanted to send Jack a message.
Coach Bo Pelini, WR Kenny Bell, RB Ameer Abdullah and others spoke in front of the camera for an impromptu support video that ended with a "We love you Hoffmans" and a team huddle that ended with "Team Jack." before breaking to the locker room.
Yes, it's really cool.
Hoffman's family posted on August 6 that his cancer had returned. Hoffman has an inoperable brain tumor and he had been in remission until the summer. His family is traveling to Boston for treatment.
After befriending former Nebraska RB Rex Burkhead, Hoffman, now 8, got the chance to run for the touchdown last year as a 7-year-old and has become a big part of Nebraska's team.
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- Nick Bromberg at Dr. Saturday6 hrs ago
Welcome to our Dr. Saturday feature titled "Random offseason tweet of the day." With real games just days away, coaches and players are still tweeting about non-football-related things as the season approaches. In this space, we'll try to find the funniest and goofiest tweets of the day. If you see something, don't hesitate to send it to us.
Are punters and kickers quickly becoming the most dangerous players in college football?
Texas A&M punter Drew Kaser broke a light at the team's indoor practice facility with a punt on Tuesday.
Earlier this month, South Carolina K Ellott Fry shattered the rear windshield of a car with a kick.
- Nick Bromberg at Dr. Saturday7 hrs ago
Could Louisville fly drones over Papa John's Cardinal Stadium during football games this fall? It's possible.
The drone took off and filmed Louisville's scrimmage over the weekend and according to Louisville's social media director, the practice could be expanded to gamedays. Pending knowledge of FAA rules, of course.
Nick Stover, director of social media for the athletic department, says the drones could become a frequent sight at games. But first he and his team have to become more familiar with the drones and any applicable laws.
“They’re still a fairly new phenomenon to civilians so we’re contacting the FAA and other agencies,” he said. “We have a lot of ideas we are exploring.
Louisville's first idea should be to have a drone following coach Bobby Petrino and defensive coordinator Todd Grantham at practice to see if the report of tension between the two is true.
- Graham Watson at Dr. Saturday19 hrs ago
Kansas started the calendar year with four potentially great options at running back — Darrian Miller, four-star recruit Traevohn Wrench, Brandon Bourbon and Taylor Cox — now none of those four will see the field for the Jayhawks this season.
The latter two, Bourbon and Cox, both suffered season-ending injuries in the past two days. Bourbon, who was expected to be the starter, tore his ACL during a scrimmage on Sunday and Cox tore his Achilles during a non-contact drill on Monday.
“I feel bad for both Brandon and Taylor as they were looking forward to the opportunity to be the replacement for James Sims,” coach Charlie Weis said in a statement. “I sat down with each of them individually and talked through their options and was happy that they chose to further their education, while attempting to play again next year if things work out.”
Both players have already used their redshirt seasons, but will apply for a sixth year of eligibility with a medical hardship waiver.
Earlier this year, Wrench, who was the biggest recruit in the Kansas signing class, failed to qualify academically and enrolled at Butler Community College, and Miller left the program in June citing “personal reasons.”