Dr. Saturday - NCAAF

  • Former UNLV running back David Peeples died Wednesday according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal. He was 29.

    Peeples, a Las Vegas native, died at Mountain View Hospital with the cause of death “yet to be determined.”

    Peeples, the Gatorade Nevada Player of the Year in 2003, enrolled at UNLV in 2004 after a decorated career at Cheyenne High School in North Las Vegas. He rushed for 3,334 yards and 30 scores in his high school career, but his time at UNLV was marred with injury.

    UNLV Sports Information Director Mark Wallington and Denver Broncos linebacker Brandon Marshall, a Las Vegas native, paid tribute to Peeples on Twitter.

    Overall, in parts of four seasons, Peeples rushed for 566 yards and eight touchdowns as a Rebel.

    For more UNLV news, visit Rebel-Net.com.

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    Sam Cooper is a contributor for the Yahoo Sports blogs. Have a tip? Email him or follow him on Twitter!

  • Even though his team came up short and lost in the semifinal round to eventual champion Ohio State, Alabama head coach Nick Saban said the College Football Playoff as a whole was a success in its first year.

    However, beyond the teams that cracked the top four, Saban said at a coaches conference held by the Minority Coaches Association that the Playoff actually had a negative effect on the rest of the bowl teams.

    From the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer:

    He noted the lack of attendance and interest in some of the smaller bowl games. While plenty of interest was created for the CFP, he said, it subtracted from the attention given to the other games. In his estimation, it’s a problem because it takes away the opportunities for “positive self-gratification” for a number of players on teams that do not have as much success at the end of the year.

    Several FBS coaches across the country have said that they support the idea of expanding the Playoff beyond four teams, though CFP representatives haven’t budged on the four-team format just yet.

    Saban says that would further detract from the rest of the bowl games.

    “For the four teams that were in it, it was a great experience. It was a great experience for us,” Saban said. “I don’t know if we’re going to be able to coexist with a bowl system and a playoff system. I think you’ve got to have one or the other.

    “You know, if we’re going to have an eight-team playoff, 16-team playoff, I don’t think you’re going to have bowl games. I’m not advocating either one. I’m just saying it’s going to be difficult for those two things to co-exist.”

    New Florida head coach Jim McElwain agreed with Saban.

    “The issue there is that I think it will lose a lot of what is college football,” McElwain said. “I’d hate to see that.”

    It doesn’t seem like coaches will have to deal with the possibility of expansion any time soon. CFP executive director Bill Hancock said earlier this month that there has been “no talk of expanding” and that “we need to give (the four-team format) a chance” beyond just one year.

    The College Football Playoff’s current contract for four teams is 12 years (with 11 more to go).

    For more Alabama news, visit TideSports.com.

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    Sam Cooper is a contributor for the Yahoo Sports blogs. Have a tip? Email him or follow him on Twitter!

  • The folks in Ann Arbor seem to be really jacked up about the beginning of spring practice.

    First, new Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh said the first day of spring drills is “like coming out of the mother’s womb” and that he would attack it “with an enthusiasm unknown to mankind.”

    Practice began on Tuesday and Wolverines defensive backs Jabrill Peppers and Blake Countess showed that they head-over-heels excited to be back on the field.

    That’s Peppers, a redshirt freshman, showing off his gymnastics skills during what looks to be a special teams drill. Peppers, who recently moved from cornerback to safety, missed the majority of the 2014 season with various injuries. The former five-star recruit is expected to make an impact for the Wolverines in the fall.

    Two days after Peppers’ impressive backflip, fifth-year senior Blake Countess took the gymnast skills to another level.

    Unlike Peppers, Countess, an All-Big Ten honorable mention selection in 2014, actually has a gymnastics background from his youth, so that seems like a bit of an unfair comparison. Still, it shows off the kind of athletic ability the Wolverines will have on display in their secondary in 2015.

    Following the conclusion of Friday’s practice, the Wolverines have a week off before picking things up again on March 10. From then on out it’s three practices per week until the team’s spring game on Saturday, April 4.

    For more Michigan news, visit TheWolverine.com.

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    Sam Cooper is a contributor for the Yahoo Sports blogs. Have a tip? Email him or follow him on Twitter!

  • Four Oregon State players, including two offensive linemen with starting experience, have decided to retire.

    The program announced Friday that the retirement of offensive linemen Garrett Weinreich and Grant Bays, defensive end Glyeb Ewing and safety Zack Robinson are all related to medical issues.

    The 6-foot-6, 312-pound Weinreich earned the starting role for the Beavers at left guard entering the 2014 season. He started the opener against Portland State but re-aggravated a knee injury he originally suffered in his true freshman season in 2012. From that point on he struggled to return to the field and saw action in only two games for the season. That same injury caused him to miss the entire 2012 season and limited him to just four games on special teams as a redshirt freshman in 2013.

    Like Weinreich, the 6-foot-3, 288-pound Bays was entering his redshirt junior season for the Beavers. He started a combined 10 games over the past two seasons at right guard, but according to The Oregonian, Bays dealt with a “nagging back issue” for much of his career.

    After redshirting as a true freshman in 2012, the 6-foot-2, 205-pound Robinson appeared in 19 games over the past two seasons for the Beavers, mainly on special teams. However, both seasons were cut short due to injury. In 2013, it was a knee injury that kept Robinson out of two games. In 2014, Robinson missed the team’s final three games with an unspecified injury. Overall, Robinson registered eight tackles, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery in his career.

    Ewing, a three-star recruit from Waukon, Iowa, took a redshirt in 2014.

    The Beavers start their first spring practice under new coach Gary Andersen on Tuesday, March 3.

    For more Oregon State news, visit BeaverBlitz.com.

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    Sam Cooper is a contributor for the Yahoo Sports blogs. Have a tip? Email him or follow him on Twitter!

  • Another Oregon lineman has decided not to return for a fifth season.

    A month after defensive tackle Sam Kamp made the decision due to health concerns, Oregon announced Thursday that offensive lineman Andre Yruretagoyena, a potential starter in 2015, will retire from football for personal reasons.

    “We wish him all the best,” said Oregon head coach Mark Helfrich.

    Yruretagoyena was a redshirt junior in 2014 and started the first two games of the season for the Ducks before going down with a leg injury. That injury kept him sidelined for much of the season, but he was able to play but not start in the team’s final four games, including the Pac-12 title game, the Rose Bowl, and the College Football Playoff title game.

    Overall in his Oregon career, Yruretagoyena played in 17 games. According to a release from Oregon, Yruretagoyena said he now plans to “focus on getting my body healthy and graduating.”

    “I have the utmost respect for all my coaches and teammates, and can’t thank them enough for the support and opportunity to represent the University of Oregon,” Yruretagoyena said.

    “I’d also like to thank the fans of the team for their support and taking their time to come to games; they’re a very big part of this program and their support will always be a huge motivator for the team. I wish the team nothing but a successful year and can’t wait to watch.”

    In addition to Yruretagoyena, Oregon also needs to replace departed seniors Hroniss Grasu, Jake Fisher and Hamani Stevens along the offensive line. Fortunately for the Ducks, senior left tackle Tyler Johnstone is set to return after missing all of last year with an injury.

    Additionally, Cameron Hunt, Tyrell Crosby, Matt Pierson, Jake Pisarcik and Doug Brenner – all of whom started at least one game last season – are set to return.

    Oregon starts spring practice on March 31.

    For more Oregon news, visit DuckSportsAuthority.com.

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    Sam Cooper is a contributor for the Yahoo Sports blogs. Have a tip? Email him or follow him on Twitter!

  • The man who vandalized Howard's Rock at Clemson's Memorial Stadium may not have realized he'd be caught on camera. Or if he did, he was pretty brazen.

    The school released surveillance images from the vandalism, which show a man hitting the glass case surrounding the rock with what appears to be a rod. The incident shattered the glass around the case, though Clemson said the rock itself appeared to be unharmed. Construction crews working on the stadium found the rock's case vandalized on Wednesday morning.

    The suspect has not been found yet. From WLTX:

    The suspect was wearing a navy blue jacket, blue jeans, work boots, and gloves with reflective material on the knuckles and back of the hand. The pickup he was in is similar to a Ford Ranger. Anyone with information should call Clemson police at 864-656-2222 or Crimestoppers at 1-888-CRIME-SC.

    The rock has been removed from Memorial Stadium until a new case is found.

    For more Clemson news, visit TigerIllustrated.com.

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    Nick Bromberg is the assistant editor of Dr. Saturday on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at nickbromberg@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

  • If you're familiar with anything Texas A&M-related on Twitter, you've undoubtedly seen the #WRTS hashtag when it comes to recruiting.

    "WRTS" means "We Run This State," and while Kevin Sumlin has said he prefers using "YESSIR" when it comes to recruiting, others have used it. It, of course, can be interpreted as a shot at other Texas schools as the Aggies have started getting the highest-ranked recruiting classes in the state in recent years.

    However, A&M is now moving to officially distance itself from the hashtag.

    Why? Well, someone now related to the Texas A&M program filed a trademark for the wordmark.

    The father of Daylon Mack, a four-star defensive lineman who committed in the class of 2015 to the Aggies, filed a trademark for #WRTS in the middle of 2014. He even used the same attorney that Johnny Manziel used for his "Johnny Football" trademark.

    From ESPN:

    "Texas A&M has not had any plans -- past or future -- to trademark, purchase, or otherwise profit financially from #WRTS," the school said in a statement Thursday. "Texas A&M was aware of Mr. Coris Mack's trademark application but this trademark application had nothing to do with the recruitment of Mr. Daylon Mack as a student-athlete at Texas A&M."

    The school also said it has "disallowed licensees from using #WRTS in connection with Texas A&M trademarks, to include official logos, phrases and colors, in production of licensed goods. Texas A&M's Office of Business Development, which oversees the university's trademarks and licensing, is not a part of the athletics department, and is not involved in the recruitment of student-athletes."

    The move from Texas A&M makes sense now. If it finds a new hashtag to use for the next recruiting cycle, it has a chance for it to take over and everyone will move on from #WRTS before Mack's father uses the trademark. According to ESPN, Mack's father hasn't answered questions about the trademark to make it official yet. He has until to July to do so. 

    In case you were wondering what the trademark has been applied for, here are the categories requested in the application.

    A-shirts; Athletic apparel, namely, shirts, pants, jackets, footwear, hats and caps, athletic uniforms; Athletic pants; Athletic shirts; Baseball caps; Baseball caps and hats; Camp shirts; Cap visors; Capri pants; Caps; Caps with visors; Cargo pants; Clothing for athletic use, namely, padded pants; Clothing for athletic use, namely, padded shirts; Clothing for babies, toddlers and children, treated with fire and heat retardants, namely, pajamas, jackets, shirts, pants, jumpers; Fishing shirts; Golf caps; Golf pants, shirts and skirts; Golf shirts; Graphic T-shirts; Gym pants; Hats; Headgear, namely, athletic caps and hats; Hooded sweat shirts; Jogging pants; Knit shirts; Knitted caps; Knot caps; Long-sleeved shirts; Moisture-wicking sports pants; Moisture-wicking sports shirts; Over shirts; Pants; Polo shirts; Rugby shirts; Shirts; Shirts and short-sleeved shirts; Short-sleeved or long-sleeved t-shirts; Short-sleeved shirts; Sleeves worn separate and apart from blouses, shirts and other tops; Sport shirts; Sports caps and hats; Sports pants; Sports shirts; Sports shirts with short sleeves; Stocking caps; Stocking hats; Stretch pants; Sun protective clothing, namely, athletic shirts and pants; Sweat pants; Sweat shirts; T-shirts; T-shirts for athletic activity; Tee shirts; Toboggan hats; Toboggan hats, pants and caps; Track pants; Travel clothing contained in a package comprising reversible jackets, pants, skirts, tops and a belt or scarf; Triathlon clothing, namely, triathlon tights, triathlon shorts, triathlon singlets, triathlon shirts, triathlon suits; Waterproof jackets and pants; Wind pants; Wind shirts; Women's clothing, namely, shirts, dresses, skirts, blouses; Women's hats and hoods; Yoga pants; Yoga shirts

    Got any hashtag suggestions for A&M?

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    Nick Bromberg is the assistant editor of Dr. Saturday on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at nickbromberg@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

  • A soccer field in Honduras will bear the name of famous Georgia football coach Vince Dooley.

    Dooley, 82, has spent time in Honduras helping youth find alternatives to drugs and gang violence. He’s also helped plan the landscape of the field, which will include 160 hedges on the border similar to the border at Sanford Stadium where the Georgia Bulldogs play football.

    The field will be located at an elementary and middle school in the Agalta Valley and the scoreboard, which was donated by Coca-Cola, will have Dooley’s name. FIFA donated the goals.

    Dooley, who won 201 games and the 1980 national championship at Georgia, will be in Honduras on March 19 for the dedication along with Honduran president Juan Orlando Hernandez.

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

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  • With an NHL game being played at Michigan Stadium last year and another scheduled for Minnesota’s TCF Bank Stadium on New Year’s Day 2016, another Big Ten football venue – Penn State’s Beaver Stadium – seems like another logical location for a future Winter Classic game.

    The Philadelphia Flyers and Pittsburgh Penguins have one of the fiercest rivalries in the NHL, so bringing that matchup to State College, which is right in the middle of the state, would make for an awesome atmosphere at 107,282-capacity Beaver Stadium. NHL commissioner Gary Bettman thinks so too, and he told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review that the league has discussed it.

    “There’s been talk about it,” Bettman said. “I’m intrigued by the possibility. But it’s not anywhere close to fruition.”

    While that’s at least somewhat promising for Pennsylvania hockey fans, it also got us thinking about what other college football venues could host hockey games.

    Notre Dame Stadium – South Bend, Indiana

    Built in 1930, Notre Dame Stadium is one of the most iconic venues in all of college football. The stadium currently holds 80,795 and a $400 million renovation project is on the way. Once those renovations are complete in South Bend, a Blues-Blackhawks game would be a great way to show it off.

    Ohio Stadium – Columbus, Ohio

    Michigan did it, so you know the Buckeyes want to show that they can put on a better show at Ohio Stadium in Columbus. The Horseshow holds 104,944, so you’d probably need to bring in the Detroit Red Wings to play the Columbus Blue Jackets to fill the joint. It would be awesome.

    Rose Bowl – Pasadena, California

    California may not be the most outdoor hockey-friendly environment, but if a Ducks-Kings game could be played at Dodger Stadium last year, a game could totally be played at the iconic Rose Bowl. The San Jose Sharks-Los Angeles Kings rivalry has intensified with playoff meetings in three of the past four seasons. A game at the 92-542-seat Rose Bowl would be a ton of fun.

    Michie Stadium – West Point, New York

    This would be a bit more of an intimate environment than the others with a capacity of just 38,000, but an outdoor game at the United States Military Academy would make for a great aesthetic. There are plenty of NHL teams that could be involved, including the Buffalo Sabres, the New York Rangers, the New York Islanders and the New Jersey Devils.

    Others: Neyland Stadium (Tennessee), Milan Puskar Stadium (West Virginia), High Point Solutions Stadium (Rutgers)

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    Sam Cooper is a contributor for the Yahoo Sports blogs. Have a tip? Email him or follow him on Twitter!

  • LSU won't be able to sign any recruits who wish to enroll early to financial aid agreements for the next two years.

    The Advocate found the penalties handed down from the SEC via a public records request. The penalties stem from a player who signed a financial aid agreement with LSU to enroll early in January. When a player does so, the school he signs an FAA with is allowed unlimited contact – but only if he early enrolls with that school. The player didn't, and therefore LSU violated the unlimited contact provision.

    As part of the sanctions, LSU will also lose 21 (10 percent) of its 2015 recruiting evaluation days.

    The name of the recruit is unknown and the Advocate said LSU declined comment. The report does list one player who signed a FAA early but didn't sign a LOI with LSU.

    From the Advocate:

    Matt Womack, an offensive tackle from Mississippi, signed a financial aid agreement with LSU in August intending to enroll at the school in January. Instead, Womack de-committed — as hundreds of prospects do each year — and signed a National Letter of Intent with Alabama in February.

    Financial aid agreements, instituted by the NCAA in the fall of 2013, allow high school seniors who plan to enroll early to sign with that school starting Aug. 1 of their senior years.

    A financial aid agreement doesn’t bind the player to that particular school like a National Letter of Intent does, but it affords coaches of that school unlimited contact with the signee — contact that would normally be considered against NCAA rules.

    However, Womack's father said in the fall to the Clarion-Ledger that LSU wasn't using the financial aid agreement to contact his son on an unlimited basis.

    Players can sign multiple financial aid agreements. Therefore, by initiating unlimited contact with a not-rock-solid recruit who has signed a financial aid agreement with the intention to enroll early, programs run the risk of the violation LSU committed.

    LSU's 2015 recruiting class was ranked No. 8 in the country by Rivals.

    For more LSU news, visit Tigerbait.com.

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    Nick Bromberg is the assistant editor of Dr. Saturday on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at nickbromberg@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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