College Football
NCAAF News Wire
  • Tuesday, March 3, 2015
    Cities vie for future CFP title game
    By The Sports Xchange

    Bids to become the host city for the 2018, 2019 and 2020 College Football Playoff are heating up, and as many as seven cities are getting consideration.

    • ESPN reported Atlanta, Charlotte, Jacksonville, south Florida -- the regional bid includes Broward and Palm Beach counties -- Minnesota, San Antonio, and Santa Clara, Calif., are expected to place bids. Arlington, Texas, hosted the inaugural CFP championship game in January.

      Santa Clara is the game-day home of the NFL's San Francisco 49ers. Levi's Stadium will host the Super Bowl in February 2016.

      The 2016 National Championship game will played in Glendale, Ariz., at University of Phoenix Stadium, the site of Super Bowl XLIX, on Jan. 11, 2016. The Orange Bowl and the Cotton Bowl will have the semifinals. After nearly upsetting Arlington for the 2015 game, Raymond James Stadium in Tampa will host the 2017 game on Jan. 9.

      ---Ohio State self-reported 47 minor Big Ten and NCAA rules violations in 2014, but most of those did not involve the football program, according to a report Tuesday.

      One that was tied to football involved a text from a 4-year-old to a recruit last May 27.

      Wide receivers coach Zach Smith's son picked up his phone and accidentally sent an automatic text reply to a prospect, reported The Lantern, Ohio State's student newspaper. After the inadvertent text, the university sent a letter of education to coaches outlining NCAA texting rules and phone security. The NCAA decided against reviewing the case.

      The Ohio State football program was responsible for only eight of the 47 minor violations, according to reports, with the remainder spread across the athletic department. Another football violation resulted from impermissible on-campus contact by coach Urban Meyer with a junior college player last fall.

      ---The Idaho Vandals will be allowed to go bowling this year.

      On Tuesday, the school released a statement saying the football program had met the NCAA academic minimum requirement to become eligible for postseason play.

      The program was prohibited from playing in a bowl game last season because the program did not meet the minimum standard required by the NCAA. Not only was the program not allowed to play in a bowl game, but the Vandals saw valuable practice time curtailed. Per NCAA sanctions, coach Paul Petrino's program was stripped of four hours of practice each week.

      --The University of Texas launched a fan loyalty plan on Tuesday to reward those who contribute to the university and spend money on season tickets.

      Priority for tickets, parking, postseason games and other hot-ticket events will be based on past season tickets purchases, seat contributions and financial gifts to the university, the school announced. The loyalty points system will go into effect for 2015 football season tickets. Previous contributions and ticket purchases since 1986 will be added to an individual's points.

  • Tuesday, March 3, 2015
    Idaho bowl ban lifted
    By The Sports Xchange

    The Idaho Vandals will be allowed to go bowling this year.

    • On Tuesday, the school released a statement saying the football program had met the NCAA academic minimum requirement to become eligible for postseason play.

      The Vandal program was prohibited from playing in a bowl game last season because the program did not meet the minimum standard required by the NCAA.

      Not only was the program not allowed to play in a bowl game, but the Vandals saw valuable practice time curtailed. Per NCAA sanctions, coach Paul Petrino's program was stripped of four hours of practice each week.

      "We never make excuses, but that hurt. That' big," Petrino said.

      All the Vandals have to do now is win six games to become eligible to play in a bowl game. The program has not won more than one game in a season since 2011 and has not reached the six-win mark since 2010.

  • Tuesday, March 3, 2015
    Texas to use loyalty program for tickets
    By The Sports Xchange

    The University of Texas launched a fan loyalty plan on Tuesday to reward those who contribute to the university and spend money on season tickets.

    • Priority for tickets, parking, postseason games and other hot-ticket events will be based on past season tickets purchases, seat contributions and financial gifts to the university, the school announced.

      The loyalty points system will go into effect for 2015 football season tickets. Previous contributions and ticket purchases since 1986 will be added to an individual's points.

      Five points will be given for every $100 in contributions to the school received since Sept. 1. One point for every $100 in tickets purchased since 1987 will be added to the points balance.

      "The loyalty points system adds value to all season ticket and Longhorn Foundation members," Texas athletic director Steve Patterson said. "It also rewards those who make a lifetime commitment in Texas athletics and our student-athletes through philanthropic contributions, which are vital to the future success of our programs. ...

      "Across all areas, we are working to improve the fan experience through increased customer service. This is one component of that overall goal. It directly reflects a need expressed by our fans that we were able to provide a solution."

  • Tuesday, March 3, 2015
    Ohio State's minor violations include 4-year-old's text
    By The Sports Xchange

    Ohio State self-reported 47 minor Big Ten and NCAA rules violations in 2014, but most of those did not involve the football program, according to a report Tuesday.

    • One that was tied to football involved a text from a 4-year-old to a recruit last May 27.

      Buckeyes wide receivers coach Zach Smith's son picked up his phone and accidentally sent an automatic text reply to a prospect, reported The Lantern, Ohio State's student newspaper.

      After the inadvertent text, the university sent a letter of education to the football coaching staff outlining NCAA texting rules and phone security. The NCAA decided against reviewing the case.

      The Ohio State football program was responsible for only eight of the 47 minor violations, according to reports, with the remainder spread across the athletic department.

      Another football violation resulted from impermissible on-campus contact by coach Urban Meyer with a junior college player last fall.

  • Tuesday, March 3, 2015
    Seven cities bidding to host CFP title game
    By The Sports Xchange

    Bids to become the host city for the 2018, 2019 and 2020 College Football Playoff are heating up, and as many as seven cities are getting consideration.

    • ESPN reported Atlanta, Charlotte, Jacksonville, South Florida -- the regional bid includes Broward and Palm Beach counties -- Minnesota, San Antonio, and Santa Clara, Calif., are expected to place bids. Arlington, Texas, hosted the inaugural CFP championship game in January.

      Santa Clara is the game-day home of the NFL's San Francisco 49ers. Levi's Stadium will host the Super Bowl in February 2016.

      Bids submitted by the May deadline will be weighed before a host city is identified in October.

      The 2016 National Championship game will played in Glendale, Ariz., at University of Phoenix Stadium, the site of Super Bowl XLIX, on Jan. 11, 2016. The Orange Bowl and the Cotton Bowl will have the semifinals.

      After nearly upsetting Arlington for the 2015 game, Raymond James Stadium in Tampa will host the 2017 game on Jan. 9.

  • Sunday, March 1, 2015
    Report: Duquesne player dies of self-inflicted gunshot
    By The Sports Xchange

    Chris Johnson, a Duquesne football player who had previously played at Florida, died on Friday as a result of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to the medical examiner, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported Sunday.

    • Johnson, 22, had completed his senior season in 2014 at Duquesne, an FCS school. He had 104 tackles and two interceptions in two seasons at Duquesne.

      "Everyone associated with the Duquesne football program is deeply saddened by the tragic loss of Chris," Duquesne head coach Jerry Schmitt said in a statement. "Chris was a passionate football player who was also a great teammate, who was loved by many. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Chris' family at this difficult time."

      Johnson transferred to Duquesne from Florida in 2013. He had been a special-teams player with the Gators.

  • Saturday, February 28, 2015
    UNC QB Williams out for spring practice
    By The Sports Xchange

    North Carolina quarterback Marquise Williams will miss spring practice because of a hip injury.

    • Williams, one of the top quarterbacks in the ACC last season, "will return full speed in August," the school announced Saturday.

      As a redshirt junior last season, Williams threw 21 touchdown passes and nine interceptions and ran for 788 yards and 13 touchdowns. North Carolina went 6-7, 4-4 in the ACC.

      With Williams out this spring, Mitch Trubisky will run the first-team offense.

      "There's a lot of continuity with 'Quise coming back," quarterbacks coach Keith Heckendorf said. "Marquise is our starting quarterback, and it's been that way since the middle of the season when he kind of took the reins and went with it. But that's not going to eliminate the competition."

  • Friday, February 27, 2015
    Texas A&M assistant sues former school
    By The Sports Xchange

    Johnny Chavis, the new defensive coordinator at Texas A&M, reportedly has filed a lawsuit against his new school and his old one, LSU, to avoid paying a $400,000 buyout.

    • Texas A&M later denied that a suit was filed against it, however.

      Chavis' old contract with LSU mandated that he pay the school if he left with more than 11 months remaining on his contract. That deal ran through Dec. 31, 2015, and the question is over the timing of his departure, according to KBTX in College Station, Texas, which reported the lawsuit.

      Texas A&M's hire of Chavis was reported Dec. 31, 2014, and Chavis claims in the lawsuit that LSU athletic director Joe Alleva demanded the $400,000 payment on Jan. 2. But Chavis said he did not turn in his 30-day notice until Jan. 5, making Feb. 4 his final day -- less than 11 months before the expiration of his LSU deal.

      Chavis is arguing he does not owe LSU $400,000, and his reported suit against Texas A&M is an apparent safeguard in case he loses his case against LSU.

      In the lawsuit, Chavis says Texas A&M is "currently obligated to satisfy or cause to be satisfied the liquidated damages, if any, associated with Chavis' previous Employment Agreement with LSU."

      According to the suit, Texas A&M is "unwilling to tender the liquidated damages demanded by LSU because it does not believe that liquidated damages are called for under the Employment Agreement as mentioned above."

      Later Friday, Texas A&M University denied any claim that a suit has been filed against it by Chavis, nor does it agree that Chavis owes the LSU Tigers any money.

      "There is not a dispute between Coach Chavis and Texas A&M," the university said in a statement reported in the Advocate. "The University stands behind its commitment to Coach Chavis to pay any buyout due to LSU. The issue is that Texas A&M disagrees with LSU that any buyout payment is actually due."

      LSU attorney Thomas Skinner told KBTX, "We're not going to comment on the substance of the allegations in the lawsuit other than to say that LSU is going to seek to fully enforce its rights under the contract and we're very confident in the outcome."

  • Thursday, February 26, 2015
    Mississippi State extends Mullen's contract
    By The Sports Xchange

    Dan Mullen, who guided Mississippi State to a No. 1 ranking in 2014, signed a four-year contract extension through the 2018 season on Thursday.

    • Mullen's $4.275 million annual average salary will make him the ninth highest-paid coach in college football but fourth in the SEC behind Alabama's Nick Saban, Texas A&M's Kevin Sumlin and LSU's Les Miles, according to USA Today data. The four-year extension is the longest permitted by state law.

      "Dan has done a phenomenal job in leading our football team the past six years and we're happy to be in a position to reward his efforts while making sure he'll be able to continue building a championship program for Mississippi State," Bulldogs athletic director Scott Stricklin said.

      "Under Dan's guidance, Bulldog football has achieved a level of consistent success unparalleled in our history, during which time we've been ranked No. 1 in the nation and appeared in elite bowl games. We're proud Dan is our coach."

      Under Mullen, Mississippi State has compiled a 46-31 record in six seasons, including a 10-3 mark in 2014.

      The extension might quiet some of the speculation about Mullen leaving Starkville for another opportunity.

      "It's a privilege to represent our university, our program and our fans here at Mississippi State," Mullen said. "I appreciate Scott Stricklin and our administration who have given us the tools and resources to be successful and develop Bulldog football into a national brand over the last six years.

      "We spent five weeks ranked No. 1 last season for the first time, but we have only scratched this surface on what we can accomplish here. We have created a winning culture both on and off the field and built a program that has sustained success in the nation's toughest conference. I've always said we are going to win a championship here, and I firmly believe that."

  • Thursday, February 26, 2015
    College football notebook: LSU reportedly punished
    By The Sports Xchange

    The LSU football team will be prohibited from signing early enrollees to financial-aid agreements for two years as part of SEC-mandated punishment for a violation last year, according to a report Thursday.

    • LSU reported the violation after a recruit who had signed a financial-aid agreement backed out on enrolling and went to Alabama instead, according to the Advocate. The financial agreement had allowed LSU unlimited contact with the recruit, but when he chose not to attend LSU that contact became a violation. LSU reported it Feb. 3.

      The SEC's punishment also includes a loss this year of 10 percent of LSU's recruiting days (21 of 210), which includes any visit to a recruit's school.

      --- TCU quarterback Trevor Boykin will undergo surgery on his left non-throwing wrist in April but is expected to be 100 percent for voluntary summer workouts.

      Horned Frogs coach Gary Patterson said this week that the procedure involves repairing a fractured bone that Boykin played with for much of last season while wearing a soft cast.

      TCU starts spring practice on Friday and Boykin will be involved until he has the surgery.

      --- Linebacker Alton Meeks said he will transfer out of the Iowa State football program. The school confirmed Meeks' departure to the Ames Tribune.

      Meeks was a high school quarterback who started two games at middle linebacker as a redshirt freshman in 2014 before losing his starting job. He finished the season with 12 tackles in 11 games.

      Meeks' transfer brings to nine the number of players who have departed the Cyclones' program since January.

      Juniors Kane Seeley and Jordan Harris are expected to compete for the starting middle linebacker job.

      ---Former Baylor walk-on running back Silas Nacita, who received national attention when people learned he had been homeless for a year, said Thursday he is sorry for breaking the rules by living with an acquaintance.

      "The bottom line is that I broke the rules," he wrote on Twitter. "I should've never accepted the help and I am deeply sorry for my actions.

      "At the time I did not think this was inappropriate behavior, but now I can see that I made a mistake by disregarding guidance from Baylor compliance on what benefits I may accept," said Nacita, who was dismissed by the team Wednesday. "I take full responsibility for my choice to accept these inappropriate benefits."

  • Thursday, February 26, 2015
    Report: LSU punished for recruiting violation
    By The Sports Xchange

    The LSU football team will be prohibited from signing early enrollees to financial-aid agreements for two years as part of SEC-mandated punishment for a violation last year, according to a report Thursday.

    • LSU reported the violation after a recruit who had signed a financial-aid agreement backed out on enrolling and went to Alabama instead, according to the Advocate. The financial agreement had allowed LSU unlimited contact with the recruit, but when he chose not to attend LSU that contact became a violation. LSU reported it Feb. 3.

      The SEC's punishment also includes a loss this year of 10 percent of LSU's recruiting days (21 of 210), which includes any visit to a recruit's school.

      A financial aid agreement commits the school to the player and allows unlimited contact, but the player can still be recruited by other schools and ultimately can sign elsewhere.

  • Thursday, February 26, 2015
    TCU's Boykin will have wrist surgery
    By The Sports Xchange

    TCU quarterback Trevor Boykin will undergo surgery on his left non-throwing wrist in April but is expected to be 100 percent for voluntary summer workouts.

    • Horned Frogs coach Gary Patterson said this week that the procedure involves repairing a fractured bone that Boykin played with for much of last season while wearing a soft cast.

      TCU starts spring practice on Friday and Boykin will be involved until he misses final week when he has the surgery.

      "We're going to make sure that gets fixed right," Patterson said. "He won't go through the last three practices of spring, three or four. We'll get that done so he's ready to go come August."

      Boykin did not miss a game last year after sustaining the injury in October. After a breakout 2014 season in which he was named the Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year, the senior is expected to enter 2015 as a Heisman Trophy candidate.

  • Thursday, February 26, 2015
    Cyclones LB Meeks transferring
    By The Sports Xchange

    Linebacker Alton Meeks said he will transfer out of the Iowa State Cyclones football program. The school confirmed Meeks' departure to the Ames Tribune.

    • Meeks was a high school quarterback who started two games at middle linebacker as a redshirt freshman in 2014 before losing his starting job. He finished the season with 12 tackles in 11 games.

      Meeks' transfer brings to nine the number of players who have departed the Cyclones program since January.

      Juniors Kane Seeley and Jordan Harris are now expected to compete for the starting middle linebacker job.

  • Thursday, February 26, 2015
    Once-homeless Silas Nacita 'deeply sorry' for violation
    By The Sports Xchange

    Baylor walk-on running back Silas Nacita, who received national attention when people learned he had been homeless for a year, said Thursday he is sorry for breaking the rules by living with an acquaintaince.

    • "The bottom line is that I broke the rules," he wrote on Twitter. "I should've never accepted the help and I am deeply sorry for my actions.

      "At the time I did not think this was inappropriate behavior, but now I can see that I made a mistake by disregarding guidance from Baylor compliance on what benefits I may accept," Nacita wrote continued via Twitter. "I take full responsibility for my choice to accept these inappropriate benefits."

      Nacita, a native of Bakersfield, Calif., was a backup last season and rushed for 191 yards and three touchdowns. He walked on at Baylor in the summer of 2014 after being homeless.

      "Silas Nacita will not be a part of the football program moving forward due to rules violations that impact his eligibility," Baylor athletic director Ian McCaw said Wednesday in a statement released by the school. "We appreciate his contributions to Baylor football and wish him well as he completes his studies."

      Earlier Wednesday, Nacita said on Twitter that the NCAA ruled him ineligible because he accepted impermissible benefits while he was homeless last summer.

      The NCAA, however, tweeted that it did not issue any decision regarding Nacita's eligibility: "The NCAA did not declare Silas Nacita ineligible and Baylor has not requested a waiver for him."

      An errant autocorrect gave fan favorite Nacita the nickname "Salsa Nacho."

      "A few months before enrolling, a close family friend approached me and said they didn't want me sleeping on floors and wondering how I was going to eat the next meal," Nacita wrote on his @Salsa_Nacho Twitter account, "so they insisted on putting me in an apartment and helping out with those living expenses.

      "Because I accepted that offer instead of choosing to be homeless, I am no longer eligible to play football and pursue my dream. I had no idea I was breaking any rules, but I respect the decision of the NCAA."

      Nacita clarified Thursday that the family friend was merely an acquaintaince from Bakersfield, Calif., and that the university compliance office was uncomfortable when the arrangement was first offered.

      Nacita had transferred from Cornell but was unable to enroll in 2013. He said he lived homeless for the next year and took online community college courses at a library. He earned first-team Academic All-Big 12 honors in his first year at Baylor.

      Nacita thanked coach Art Briles and said he would gladly return to the team if it ever becomes an option.

      "From here," Nacita wrote, "I would like to get back to my studies so that I'm not paying off these student loans when I'm 50. Thank you."

  • Wednesday, February 25, 2015
    College football notebook: Formerly homeless Baylor player released
    By The Sports Xchange

    Baylor walk-on running back Silas Nacita, who received national attention when people learned he had been homeless for a year, is no longer on the team.

    • Nacita, a native of Bakersfield, Calif., was a backup last season and rushed for 191 yards and three touchdowns. He walked on at Baylor in the summer of 2014 after being homeless.

      "Silas Nacita will not be a part of the football program moving forward due to rules violations that impact his eligibility," Baylor athletic director Ian McCaw said Wednesday in a statement released by the school. "We appreciate his contributions to Baylor football and wish him well as he completes his studies."

      Earlier Wednesday, Nacita said on Twitter that the NCAA ruled him ineligible because he accepted impermissible benefits while he was homeless last summer.

      Nacita had transferred from Cornell but was unable to enroll in 2013. He said he lived homeless for the next year and took online community college courses at a library. He earned first-team Academic All-Big 12 honors in his first year at Baylor.

      ---Oregon tight end Pharaoh Brown's playing future is unknown as he recovers from a serious injury that nearly resulted in amputation of his leg.

      In a win over Utah on Nov. 8, Brown suffered two torn ligaments in his right knee and a stretched artery that caused internal bleeding and cut off blood flow below his right shin. That issue had doctors contemplating amputating the lower leg, he told The Oregonian.

      Brown was hospitalized in Salty Lake City for nearly a week after the game and has had three surgeries on the leg since then.

      He is riding a stationary bike and jogging lightly on an underwater treadmill, but he is unsure whether he will be back in time for his senior season or whether he might redshirt.

      "I mean, this is a career decision, so I want to make sure my stuff is fully healed, that I can do everything and not rush back," said Brown, who caught 25 passes for 420 yards and six touchdowns last season. "That's why I don't even look that long out. If I'm able to play, I'll play. If I'm not, I'm not."

      ---Seattle Seahawks coach Pete Carroll will receive an honorary degree from USC on May 15, the day before he is inducted into the USC Athletic Hall of Fame, the school announced Wednesday.

      Carroll led USC's program from 2001 through 2009, a decade during which the Trojans dominated college football. They won two national titles (2003 and 2004) and lost in a third championship game in 2005, amassing a 97-19 record under Carroll.

      He left USC after the 2009 season to become coach of the Seahawks and has taken the NFL team to the Super Bowl in each of the past two years. Last year, when the Seahawks beat the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl XLVIII, Carroll became the third coach to win championships in college and the NFL.

      In 2010, the NCAA retroactively revoked USC's 2004 title and all 12 wins from 2005 -- part of the penalties the organization administered after it found that running back Reggie Bush had received improper gifts and should have been ineligible during those games.

      The NCAA's actions were criticized by Carroll and many outside observers, with Carroll saying in 2010 that he was "shocked and disappointed in the findings" and adding in 2014 that the NCAA had made a "terrible error."

  • Wednesday, February 25, 2015
    Once-homeless Baylor RB Nacita no longer on team
    By The Sports Xchange

    Baylor walk-on running back Silas Nacita, who received national attention when people learned he had been homeless for a year, is no longer on the football team.

    • Nacita, a native of Bakersfield, Calif., was a backup last season and rushed for 191 yards and three touchdowns. He walked on at Baylor in the summer of 2014 after being homeless.

      "Silas Nacita will not be a part of the football program moving forward due to rules violations that impact his eligibility," Baylor athletic director Ian McCaw said Wednesday in a statement released by the school. "We appreciate his contributions to Baylor football and wish him well as he completes his studies."

      Earlier Wednesday, Nacita said on Twitter that the NCAA ruled him ineligible because he accepted impermissible benefits while he was homeless last summer.

      The NCAA, however, tweeted that it did not issue any decision regarding Nacita's eligibility: "The NCAA did not declare Silas Nacita ineligible and Baylor has not requested a waiver for him."

      An errant autocorrect gave fan favorite Nacita the nickname "Salsa Nacho."

      "A few months before enrolling, a close family friend approached me and said they didn't want me sleeping on floors and wondering how I was going to eat the next meal," Nacita wrote on his @Salsa_Nacho Twitter account, "so they insisted on putting me in an apartment and helping out with those living expenses.

      "Because I accepted that offer instead of choosing to be homeless, I am no longer eligible to play football and pursue my dream. I had no idea I was breaking any rules, but I respect the decision of the NCAA."

      Nacita had transferred from Cornell but was unable to enroll in 2013. He said he lived homeless for the next year and took online community college courses at a library. He earned first-team Academic All-Big 12 honors in his first year at Baylor.

  • Wednesday, February 25, 2015
    USC will honor Carroll with degree
    By The Sports Xchange

    USC apparently holds no grudge against Pete Carroll for the way his spectacular tenure as its football coach ended.

    • Carroll, now coach of the Seattle Seahawks, will receive an honorary degree from USC on May 15, the day before he is inducted into the USC Athletic Hall of Fame, the school announced Wednesday.

      Carroll led USC's program from 2001 through 2009, a decade during which the Trojans dominated college football. They won two national titles (2003 and 2004) and lost in a third championship game in 2005, amassing a 97-19 record under Carroll.

      He left USC after the 2009 season to become coach of the Seahawks and has taken the NFL team to the Super Bowl in each of the past two years. Last year, when the Seahawks beat the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl XLVIII, Carroll became the third coach to win championships in college and the NFL.

      In 2010, the NCAA retroactively revoked USC's 2004 title and all 12 wins from 2005 -- part of the penalties the organization administered after it found that running back Reggie Bush had received improper gifts and should have been ineligible during those games.

      The NCAA's actions were criticized by Carroll and many outside observers, with Carroll saying in 2010 that he was "shocked and disappointed in the findings" and adding in 2014 that the NCAA had made a "terrible error."

  • Wednesday, February 25, 2015
    After near-amputation, Oregon TE Brown's future in doubt
    By The Sports Xchange

    Oregon tight end Pharaoh Brown's playing future is unknown as he recovers from a serious injury that nearly resulted in amputation of his leg.

    • In a win over Utah on Nov. 8, Brown suffered two torn ligaments in his right knee and a stretched artery that caused internal bleeding and cut off blood flow below his right shin. That issue had doctors contemplating amputating the lower leg, he told The Oregonian.

      Brown was hospitalized in Salty Lake City for nearly a week after the game and has had three surgeries on the leg since then.

      He is riding a stationary bike and jogging lightly on an underwater treadmill, but he is unsure whether he will be back in time for his senior season or whether he might redshirt.

      "I mean, this is a career decision, so I want to make sure my stuff is fully healed, that I can do everything and not rush back," said Brown, who caught 25 passes for 420 yards and six touchdowns last season. "That's why I don't even look that long out. If I'm able to play, I'll play. If I'm not, I'm not.

      "I'm not getting out there 'til I'm 100 percent healed and not only 100 percent healed but 100 percent in my mind that I'm healed," he added. "A lot of people get out there and are timid to cut. When I'm on the football field, I'm a different guy and I only know how to play one way -- that's fast. I play hard, real nasty. I can't take it soft. I know how I play and how I gotta be to play at that level."

  • Tuesday, February 24, 2015
    Meyer, Buckeyes stuck on cruise ship
    By The Sports Xchange

    Alabama's defense couldn't do it.

    • Neither could Oregon's defense.

      Urban Meyer and Ohio State was unstoppable this year. That is until Tuesday.

      And leave it up to Mother Nature.

      Meyer is one of 2,500 passengers, which include numerous former players and Buckeyes fans, aboard the Royal Caribbean liner Brilliance of the Seas, which has been stopped in its tracks because of dense fog near Tampa.

      The ship was supposed to dock Monday, but the fog is not expected to lift until Tuesday night.

      On the bright side, the extra day at sea has given organizers of the Buckeyes Cruise for Cancer some more time to raise even more money.

      "We are good. No worries," Meyer texted the Columbus Dispatch on Tuesday. "We raised upward of $2 million. However, we are ready to get home."

  • Tuesday, February 24, 2015
    Bradley to lead UCLA defense
    By The Sports Xchange

    West Virginia senior associate head coach Tom Bradley was hired as defensive coordinator at UCLA.

    • Bradley played at Penn State and spent more than 30 years in State College. He served as Joe Paterno's defensive coordinator for 12 years before replacing Paterno in November 2011 as interim head coach during the Jerry Sandusky scandal after the university board of trustees removed Paterno.

      Bradley also coached the Mountaineers' defensive line.

      Bradley replaces Jeff Ulbrich, who joined the Atlanta Falcons as linebackers coach on Feb. 10, and be the third defensive coordinator for coach Jim Mora Jr. in the past three seasons.

      The Bruins run a 3-4 scheme but Bradley has primarily coached the 4-3 defense.

  • Sunday, February 22, 2015
    Ex-Saints TEs coach Malone lands at Purdue
    By The Sports Xchange

    Former New Orleans Saints tight ends coach Terry Malone is headed back to the college ranks.

    • Purdue head coach Darrell Hazell announced Sunday that Malone has joined the Boilermakers as tight ends coach.

      Gerad Parker, Purdue's tight end coach the previous two seasons, will take over as the wide receivers coach and maintain his role as the recruiting coordinator.

      The Saints parted ways with Malone this offseason after nine seasons.

      "I am very excited to have Terry join our staff," Hazell said in a statement. "He brings a tremendous amount of experience from the highest levels of football. He will be a valuable asset in the continued development of our offense."

      Malone, a veteran of more than 30 years of coaching, was one of the original members of Sean Payton's coaching staff in 2006 and helped New Orleans capture its lone Super Bowl title in 2009. Malone coached Jimmy Graham while in New Orleans, helping to elevate him into an All-Pro player and one of the most productive tight ends in the NFL.

      Before joining the Saints, Malone spent nine seasons as the offensive line coach and eventually the offensive coordinator at Michigan. He was a staff member of the Wolverines' 1997 national championship team under former head coach Lloyd Carr.

      Malone also has worked at Boston College (1996), Bowling Green (1986-95), Holy Cross (1985) and as a graduate assistant at Arizona (1983-84).

  • Friday, February 20, 2015
    N.C. State gives Doeren extension, raise
    By The Sports Xchange

    North Carolina State coach Dave Doeren, whose team improved by five wins in his second season, was given a two-year contract extension Friday.

    • Doeren, now signed through 2019, also received a raise in 2015 from $1.8 million to $2.2 million.

      "When we hired Coach Doeren, we realized he had the vision and commitment to elevate our program," athletic director Debbie Yow said. "He is an outstanding leader, is committed to building a championship-level program the right way, and positively impacts the lives of our student-athletes. We look forward with anticipation to what he and his staff will do over the next several years."

      Doeren replaced Tom O'Brien in December 2012, and the Wolfpack went 3-9 in 2013, including 0-8 in ACC games. But last season, they went 8-5 and beat Central Florida in the St. Petersburg Bowl.

      "My family and I are grateful for the opportunity to be a part of N.C. State and for the tremendous support we've received from Chancellor (Randy) Woodson, athletic director Debbie Yow and the entire Wolfpack Nation," Doeren said. "From an outstanding coaching staff to visible progress in adding and maintaining the best facilities, we have so much momentum right now and I'm excited for the future of N.C. State football."

  • Thursday, February 19, 2015
    Big Ten discusses freshman ineligibility
    By The Sports Xchange

    The Big Ten is seeking input from the member schools about the feasibility of making freshman football and men's basketball players ineligible to help them adjust to college life.

    • The conference said in a statement to ESPN.com on Thursday that there is no official proposal, but it is trying to determine the interest from its universities in a "national discussion regarding a year of readiness for student-athletes."

      Maryland's student newspaper, The Diamondback, reported Thursday that the Big Ten distributed "A Year of Readiness" document to schools and that Maryland's athletic council met to discuss it.

      "What I like about the concept of the proposal is it puts right up front the basic issue: Are we basically a quasi-professional activity or primarily an educational activity?" Maryland president Wallace Loh told The Diamondback. "And if you support it, you are basically saying very clearly the No. 1 priority is the education of the students.

      "If they do well because they spend more time, get more academic advising ... their freshman year, they're going to graduate. And I think it's worth spending an extra year of financial support to ensure that they graduate."

      Iowa football coach Kirk Ferentz sees merit in keeping incoming freshmen off the field during their first year in college.

      "That would be one of the healthiest things we could do for college sports right now," Ferentz said, according to ESPN.com. "Recruiting's kind of a runaway train, and what a lot of people don't consider is there's a lot of serious pressure that's put on some players' shoulders that I'm not sure is healthy for them big picture-wise.

      "It would allow the guy to transition a little bit with a lot less fanfare and get their feet on the ground and get a good foundation established."

      Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott and Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby both have said there is growing interest in the idea among their colleagues.

      First-year freshmen have been eligible to compete during their first year of college since 1972. Before that, they were not permitted to play until their sophomore year.

      Opponents argue that such a restriction would hurt the conference in recruiting. The one-year rule currently in place for basketball, which allows players to leave school after one season for the NBA, is considered another deterrent.

      "One-and-done is a small percentage -- it's not even 1 percent of our student-athletes when you take all the schools," Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith told ESPN.com. "That's way off base to me. Do we have challenges with young people who aren't really prepared the way they should be to attack college education? No doubt about it.

      "I have not been a proponent of freshman ineligibility, but I keep my mind open that maybe it's something we have to consider."

  • Tuesday, February 17, 2015
    College football notebook: Buckeyes RB Elliott faces wrist surgery
    By The Sports Xchange

    Ohio State running back Ezekiel Elliott will have a second wrist surgery on Thursday, according to 11warriors.com.

    • Meanwhile, Buckeyes quarterback J.T. Barrett posted Tuesday on Instagram the screws removed from his right ankle that was fractured during the regular-season finale against Michigan.

      Elliott, the Buckeyes' leading rusher during their national championship season, had surgery on his right wrist in August. He compiled 1,878 rushing yards in 15 games last season, including 696 yards against Wisconsin in the Big Ten Championship Game, Alabama in the Sugar Bowl semifinal game and Oregon in the championship game.

      Barrett might be able to participate in spring practice in some fashion but is expected to be full speed for fall camp in August. The sophomore-to-be will be part of a highly anticipated quarterback battle with Cardale Jones and Braxton Miller for the starting job.

      ---Former University of Tennessee linebacker A.J. Johnson was booked on an aggravated rape charge after turning himself in on Tuesday.

      According to the Knox County (Tenn.) Sheriff’s Office, Johnson was released on $40,000 bond about 30 minutes after he arrived at the Roger D. Wilson Detention Facility in Knoxville, Tenn.

      Johnson, 23, and Tennessee cornerback Michael Williams, 21, were listed as suspects by authorities in a Nov. 16 alleged rape of a 19-year-old female student-athlete in Johnson's apartment after a game. Williams also is a suspect in a sexual assault of a second woman who has chosen not to pursue the case.

      Johnson graduated in December and was to participate in the NFL Combine this week in Indianapolis, but the league withdrew the invitation after the charges came to light. He was a four-year starter for the Vols and finished his career with 425 tackles.

      ---Before heading to NFL Combine in Indianapolis later this week, two of the top quarterback prospects have made a detour to Ann Arbor, Mich.

      Jameis Winston, who many believe will be the No. 1 pick in the draft, as well as Bryce Petty were on the Michigan campus Tuesday preparing for the combine with new Wolverines coach Jim Harbaugh.

      Winston and Petty had been working out with noted quarterback guru George Whitfield Jr. in San Diego before traveling to Ann Arbor. Whitfield, according to reports, went with Winston and Petty to Michigan.

  • Tuesday, February 17, 2015
    Buckeyes' RB Elliott to have wrist surgery
    By The Sports Xchange

    Ohio State running back Ezekiel Elliott will have a second wrist surgery on Thursday, according to 11warriors.com.

    • Meanwhile, Buckeyes quarterback J.T. Barrett posted Tuesday on Instagram the screws removed from his right ankle that was fractured during the regular-season finale against Michigan.

      Elliott, the Buckeyes' leading rusher during their national championship season, had surgery on his right wrist in August. He compiled 1,878 rushing yards in 15 games last season, including 696 yards against Wisconsin in the Big Ten Championship Game, Alabama in the Sugar Bowl semifinal game and Oregon in the championship game.

      Elliott, a junior-to-be, is one of the leading contenders to win the Heisman Trophy next year.

      Barrett might be able to participate in spring practice in some fashion but is expected to be full speed for fall camp in August. The sophomore-to-be will be part of a highly anticipated quarterback battle with Cardale Jones and Braxton Miller for the starting job in 2015.

      Barrett took over to start last season when Miller suffered a shoulder injury in preseason camp and led the Buckeyes to 11 wins.