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Path: /college-football/bo-pelini-versus-mike-riley-nebraskas-2015-non-conference-schedule

Fans at large didn’t ask for it and you may not have either. However, there’s at least the smallest wonder of how Bo Pelini would’ve done in 2015 thus far had he been given one more chance to prove he was the coach that Dear Ol’ Nebraska U needed.


Let’s take seven years of what we know about Pelini’s exploits as the Huskers' head man to help us determine if he could best Mike Riley’s efforts, meet them or do even worse. For the sake of argument, not only does Pelini get one more year, but his former staff does as well.


Remember that all injuries remain in effect, De’Mornay Pierson-El’s included.


BYU: One thing that Pelini could always be counted on is when running into a team with superior talent or coaching, he’d lose nine times out of ten. With that said, I see him having just as much trouble with Taysom Hill as Riley’s squad did.


I don’t think the game comes down to a Hail Mary, but Bronco Mendenhall’s boys still play rough and Bo goes berserk over the no-call that took out David Sutton (rightfully so). No matter who’s at the helm, the opening game winning streak dies. Bo starts out 0-1.


South Alabama: The talent disparity here is too much for the Jaguars to overcome and the score likely looks very similar. While Pelini doesn’t have a Rex Burkhead or Ameer Abdullah, he does have Tommy Armstrong and there’s worry that until DPE returns, he’ll overuse the quarterback in read option situations.


The improvements made with Riley and Langsdorf aren’t there, but Nebraska rides Terrell Newby, Mikale Wilbon and Imani Cross to victory. Pelini sits at 1-1 just like Riley.


Miami: This is the big one. Miami jumps out to a 17-0 lead almost immediately and lead 27-3 with 13:50 left to go in the third quarter. Pelini’s on the road facing a quarterback in Brad Kaaya who’s having a banner day and his team’s down by a huge margin.


The Hurricanes are faster, Armstrong’s making poorer choices and one of the best players on his team is sidelined. Offensive coordinator Tim Beck tries throws everything he can think of the kitchen sink at Miami.


However, not only does Nebraska fail to rally or come within an arm’s length of overtime, they get embarrassed and the Hurricanes enter the polls easily. Locals get restless with another blowout as Bo sits at 1-2.


Southern Miss: The Golden Eagles show shades of past scrappy teams and aren’t intimidated by Memorial Stadium. Pelini is again working with injuries playing a major factor considering defensive tackle Vincent Valentine is out.


Southern Miss saw Miami run on Nebraska, so Maliek Collins gets double-teamed, frequently causing the Big Red to give up chunks of yardage on the ground. The passing of quarterback Nick Mullens allows for plenty of scoring opportunities.


Beck is able to put together a game plan that leans on the talent edge giving Nebraska the ability to move the ball into opposing territory often. Unfortunately, the Huskers have to settle for three Drew Brown field goals and a few well-placed Sam Foltz punts once they get there.


Armstrong has a roller-coaster day and his work is for naught on a number of occasions, as Beck attempts a couple of pass plays to tight end Cethan Carter that fall incomplete. Bailing on tight end use, he attempts long bombs, one of which gets picked off late in a game that looked sloppy and ended sloppier.


Everyone is praying for Pierson-El’s return for a miraculous resurgence as the Huskers now have a 1-3 record.


Bottom Line: Mike Riley takes the comparison with a 2-2 record, but not simply because he is Pelini’s replacement.


If you review, Pelini required that one extremely special player to always take over on the field who often got run into the ground. Since he didn’t have Pierson-El, that possibility was taken away from him.


Once games got out of hand, he became flustered and his players followed suit. He claimed he knew how to stop the run, yet put up historically bad numbers trying to do so.


As of this writing, Nebraska claims the No. 7 rushing defense in the country (no doubt in large part to the grand number of passing yards being given up, but still a notable statistic). Like him or not, Bo would be setting the table for his departure from Lincoln already.  


— Written by Brandon Cavanaugh, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network. Be sure to follow Brandon on Twitter @eightlaces and Periscope (eightlaces), and like his Facebook page.

Bo Pelini versus Mike Riley: Nebraska's 2015 Non-Conference Schedule
Post date: Monday, September 28, 2015 - 10:30
Path: /college-football/arizona-state-unveils-new-gray-be-hammer-alternate-uniforms

Arizona State has unveiled a new gray alternate uniform for its Oct. 3 matchup against UCLA. The uniform is known as the ‘Be The Hammer’ alternate and sports a gray scheme, largely due to the program using a sledge hammer to break a rock after big accomplishments.


The Sun Devils will wear the gray helmet and pants for Saturday’s game against the Bruins to go along with the program’s alternate white jersey from the opener against Texas A&M.


Here’s the full look at Arizona State’s alternate uniform:






Arizona State Unveils New Gray 'Be The Hammer' Alternate Uniforms
Post date: Monday, September 28, 2015 - 10:18
Path: /college-football/5-takeaways-georgia-techs-loss-duke

For the second straight week, Georgia Tech has to fight back in the fourth quarter just to make the game look close. First it was Notre Dame. Now it’s Duke. Both losses hurt but in two totally different ways. Georgia Tech has an identity crisis and no one knows why.


Here are five takeaways from Georgia Tech’s loss to Duke.


Georgia Tech’s special teams play was the difference in the game

The special teams blunders started early in the first quarter for the Yellow Jackets when senior long snapper Sean Tobin snapped the ball way over the head of punter Ryan Roadwell. Roadwell then tried to pick the ball up and throw it, unsuccessfully, and giving the Blue Devils the ball in Georgia Tech territory. Four plays later, Duke scored. The next Georgia Tech offensive drive ended in a 69-yard punt return by Duke’s Ryan Smith to the Georgia Tech 1-yard line. Shaquille Powell would score on the next play to put Duke up 19-3 in the first quarter. It didn’t get any better for the Jackets later, as Duke return man DeVon Edwards took the opening second half kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown putting the Devils up 26-13. The Yellow Jackets couldn’t get anything going for themselves on special teams, as they averaged just 18.6 yards per kick return and 3.0 yards per punt return.


Duke’s defense played smart, stay-at-home football

You have to give David Cutcliffe and company credit here. When playing a triple-option team, you have to be disciplined and contain each and every run threat. Duke did this in a spectacular way. The Devils allowed only 173 rushing yards on 60 carries resulting in a 2.9 yards per carry average, the second-lowest total by a Paul Johnson team since a 2013 bowl loss to Mississippi. The Blue Devils gave up 316 total yards and lost the time of possession and turnover battle but when you only allow Georgia Tech to muster 16 first downs, you put yourself in a great position to win.


Justin Thomas continues to struggle

I thought after the Notre Dame loss, Georgia Tech would scale down the passing game and let the run game take over. The problem is, when your run game is only averaging 2.9 yards a carry, you have to throw the ball to try and make up the other seven yards to make a first down. The only problem with that is, Thomas finished the game with a QBR of 18.4. Woof. For the second week in a row Thomas failed to complete even half of his passes and threw just as many interceptions as he did touchdowns. Thomas was supposed to be the best player on this team but he has yet to show that he has fully embraced that role.


Georgia Tech’s defense can’t stop anyone

You give up 30 points to Notre Dame and I get it. Notre Dame has playmakers and depth even when their guys go down. You give up 34 to Duke when its quarterback has a QBR of 25.3 and you’re just plain awful. It doesn’t help that the special teams gave you nothing but still, how do you give up 34 to Duke? For the second straight year the Yellow Jackets gave Duke a short field on multiple drives and couldn’t get key stops when they needed them.


Paul Johnson looks lost

Why do I think Paul Johnson looks lost? Because a Paul Johnson offense doesn’t throw the ball. The Yellow Jackets have thrown the ball over 40 times in the last two games.




I can’t tell if Paul Johnson is trying something new or if he really doesn’t think his run game can get it done but either way he is trying everything on his play card to get Georgia Tech in the end zone. The problem is, it’s just not working. The identity of this team was established the moment Johnson was hired as head coach. Everyone knew what was coming. And Johnson didn’t care. He was going to make you stop him. But in the past two weeks Johnson has made it somewhat easier when you go away from what you have been so successful at doing on the offensive side of the ball. I really wish I had an answer for what Johnson is thinking but I don’t think even he knows.

— Written by Justin Nails, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network. Follow him on Twitter @justinnails.

5 Takeaways from Georgia Tech's Loss to Duke
Post date: Monday, September 28, 2015 - 10:00
Path: /college-football/five-thoughts-notre-dame-after-week-four

Notre Dame accomplished a lot of its goals in its game against UMass. Most importantly, the Irish won the game 62-27. The margin of victory meant a lot of playing time for many of the young Irish players. Also, the Irish emerged from the game injury free, a first for them this season.


But the game was far from perfect. With a game at Clemson next up on the schedule, the Irish have a lot to work on this week in practice.


Here are five thoughts on Notre Dame coming out of week four.


1. The Defense Has to Improve

Notre Dame came into the game with what seemed to be a stout run defense but questions against the pass. The Irish now have questions all around. UMass and the nation’s No. 121 running game put up 148 yards on the ground. A good chunk of that (83 yards) came on one run, but the Minutemen running backs were surprisingly effective. At the same time, UMass threw for over 300 yards. And it wasn’t like it was all in garbage time at the end of the game. Notre Dame’s defense better be completely different next week if the Irish are to compete with Clemson.


2. 457 Yards Rushing

UMass has a terrible rush defense. But 457 yards is 457 yards. It doesn’t matter if UMass had nine guys on the defense all day. That’s a lot of yards rushing. C.J. Prosise continued his spectacular play and freshman Josh Adams topped the 100-yard mark. The Irish offensive line abused the UMass defensive front and it got worse as the game wore on.  


3. Getting Others Involved

The Irish offense had been very dependent on Will Fuller and C.J. Prosise through the first three games. While both of those players had big games, they also got some help. Josh Adams had 133 yards rushing and Dexter Williams had 48. They both had a touchdown. Amir Carlisle led the team with five catches and Alize Jones had three for 56 yards. It was nice to see Fuller and Prosise on the bench for much of the second half.


4. A Punt Return for a Touchdown

Notre Dame’s punt return game has been pathetic during Brian Kelly’s time at Notre Dame. The last time the Irish returned a punt for a score was in 2009, which was Charlie Weis’s final year at Notre Dame. But when freshman C.J. Sanders returned a UMass punt 50 yards for a touchdown in the second quarter, it changed the entire complexion of the game. As a freshman, Sanders has made some poor choices on when (and when not) to fair catch a punt. But with the ball in his hands, he is the most natural punt returner Notre Dame has had in quite some time.


5. No One Got Hurt

When tackle Ronnie Stanley went down after getting rolled on by DeShone Kizer, all Irish fans had to think, “Oh no, not again.” But Stanley returned and there were no other injuries to Irish players. Tight end Tyler Luatua and wide receiver Corey Robinson didn’t play due to prior injuries, but nobody got seriously hurt in the game. That may have been the most important aspect of all.


— Written by Jon Kinne, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network and a college football fanatic. Kinne has been writing about recruiting for the Irish Sports Daily for 10 years. Follow him on Twitter @JonRKinne.

Five Thoughts on Notre Dame After Week Four
Post date: Monday, September 28, 2015 - 09:30
All taxonomy terms: Green Bay Packers, Kansas City Chiefs, NFL
Path: /nfl/kansas-city-chiefs-vs-green-bay-packers-preview-and-prediction-2015

The NFL can’t think of a better way to prime the pump for Super Bowl 50 than to feature the participants in the first-ever super showdown. But pitting Green Bay and Kansas City against each other is more than just an exercise in nostalgia. Both teams have large aspirations, and this early-season meeting will help both accumulate more information about where they stand in the NFL hierarchy.


Green Bay stands at 2-0 after surviving its Sunday night meeting with Seattle, despite three key players — RB Eddie Lacy, WR Davante Adams, DT Josh Boyd — leaving the game with injuries. Boyd has been placed on IR, but Lacy and Adams could play this week. The Chiefs, meanwhile, are no doubt still angry about coughing up a late lead against Denver and would like to stay relevant in the AFC West with a win. Though KC dropped the decision against the Broncos and still has some lingering problems from the past, like an inability for its receivers to find the end zone, the Chiefs remain formidable and have tremendous motivation not to fall to 1-2 in a tight division. “We’ve moved on,” Kansas City coach Andy Reid said. “That’s where I’m at. If you’re still on that game, you and I are in a different place.”


Kansas City at Green Bay


Kickoff: 8:30 p.m. ET (Monday)


Spread: Green Bay -6.5


Three Things to Watch


1. Passing Fancy

When Green Bay WR Jordy Nelson went down during the preseason with a torn ACL, many thought the Packers were in deep trouble, since Aaron Rodgers’s top receiver and incredible weapon would be missing. But things look pretty good so far, even though Randall Cobb continues to come back from a shoulder injury, and James Jones gets acclimated to the team after an absence. Cobb leads the team with 13 catches and has impressed with his dedication.


“He's a tough competitor," receiver Jeff Janis told the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel. "I don't think anything is really going to hold him back unless he physically cannot play. He just showed me what he showed me since I've known him. I don't think you could really even tell during the week that anything was bothering him. He's a tough dude." Jones has three TD catches, and Adams has nine. Rodgers, meanwhile, has been excellent, completing 76.8% of his throws, accumulating five TDs and throwing zero interceptions.


2. Turnover Issues

With about five minutes left in last week’s loss to Denver, there were plenty of Chiefs fans who expected their team to escape the game with a 2-0 record. Then came the tying TD. And with overtime looming, Jamaal Charles lost a fumble that was returned for six points. Hello, 1-1. The Charles gaffe was crippling, but it is one part of a KC’s minus-two turnover margin. QB Alex Smith, while accurate (65.5 percent) has tossed a pair of picks, and the Chiefs have had trouble with fumbles. Since Kansas City’s offense is not based on big plays, it must sustain drives and be more careful with the football.


3. Walking Wounded

It’s bad enough for Green Bay that Nelson is gone. It’s tough, too, that starting right tackle Bryan Bulaga is out for several weeks with a knee injury, and that Boyd is on injured reserve. But if the Packers are without Adams and Lacy for this week’s game, because of their ankle injuries, it could be too much. Sure, Cobb and Jones can handle the heavy lifting at receiver, but Adams is second on the team with nine catches, and Lacy has 94 yards rushing. The Packers have good talent and depth, but every team has its limits.


Final Analysis


This is an interesting matchup between a pair of teams with different agendas. Green Bay is on a high after bumping off Seattle last week and can take early control of the NFC North by moving to 3-0 with a victory. The Packers are defying the injury bug, largely because their defense has been sturdy, and Rodgers has been outstanding.


Kansas City, meanwhile, could well find itself two games behind Denver if it loses to the Packers, and the Broncos already have a head-to-head advantage. The Chiefs must cut back on turnovers, find a way to get their wide receivers into the end zone and make sure they don’t let Rodgers and the Green Bay passing attack get too comfortable. The Chiefs are good, but right now the Packers are better.


Prediction: Packers 24, Chiefs 20


— Written by Michael Bradley, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network. Bradley is a writer and broadcaster based in suburban Philadelphia. Follow him on Twitter @DailyHombre.

Kansas City Chiefs vs. Green Bay Packers Preview and Prediction
Post date: Monday, September 28, 2015 - 09:00
All taxonomy terms: College Basketball, News
Path: /college-basketball/ranking-big-ten-basketball-coaches-2015-16

These are interesting times for coaches on top of the Big Ten.


Tom Izzo is coming off a frustrating regular season and a triumphant trip to the Final Four. Bo Ryan is coming off the best two-year stretch of his career and a (perhaps premature) retirement announcement.


John Beilein and Thad Matta both had disappointing seasons. Tom Crean overachieved, but he still enters this season on the hot seat.


And perhaps none of them will have a better team in 2015-16 than Mark Turgeon.


The Athlon Sports College Basketball Preview magazine is available now.


Podcast: Who should be No. 1 in College Basketball in 2015-16?

Subscribe: iTunes | Stitcher


Ranking the Big Ten Basketball Coaches for 2015-16



1. Tom Izzo, Michigan State

Record at Michigan State: 495-199, 233-107 Big Ten

NCAA record: 46-17, seven Final Fours, one championship

Number to note: Izzo’s first three Final Four teams were No. 1 seeds. His last four were seeded seventh (2015), fifth (2010, 2005) and second (2009).

Why he’s ranked here: Izzo is 15 years removed from his national championship, but he’s on one of the best runs of his career. Michigan State has won at least 27 games in seven of the last eight seasons.


2. Bo Ryan, Wisconsin

Record at Wisconsin: 357-125, 172-68 Big Ten

NCAA record: 25-14, two Final Fours

Number to note: Ryan is 42-24 against Tom Izzo, John Beilein and Thad Matta. He’s also the only one of the four with a winning record against each of the other three.

Why he’s ranked here: Will he retire or won’t he? Either way, Ryan just capped the best two-year span of what’s likely a Hall of Fame career. If Wisconsin slips back to pre-Kaminsky/Dekker levels, that’s still a top-four finish in the Big Ten and an NCAA appearance.


3. John Beilein, Michigan

Record at Michigan: 166-110, 78-66 Big Ten

NCAA record: 16-9, one Final Four

Number to note: How about this for ball security: Nine of Beilein’s last 11 teams at Michigan and West Virginia have ranked in the top 25 in turnover rate.

Why he’s ranked here: Last year’s 16-16 debacle should be credited to injuries and bad luck. With Caris LeVert and Derrick Walton back, Michigan and Beilein should be back in the Big Ten title discussion.


4. Thad Matta, Ohio State

Record at Ohio State: 299-94, 132-60 Big Ten

NCAA record: 24-13, two Final Fours

Number to note: Ohio State is 5-12 against Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Michigan State and Wisconsin the last two seasons.

Why he’s ranked here: In general, Matta is as steady as they come. He’s only missed the NCAA Tournament twice as a head coach. Ohio State was under NCAA sanctions in one of those; the Buckeyes won the NIT in the other. That said, the Buckeyes have taken a dip the last two seasons, finishing fifth and sixth in the Big Ten and failing to reach the Sweet 16.


5. Mark Turgeon, Maryland

Record at Maryland: 87-50, 37-33 ACC/Big Ten

NCAA record: 6-6

Number to note: In eight seasons at Maryland and Texas A&M, Turgeon’s teams have ranked in the top 40 in defensive efficiency on KenPom six times.

Why he’s ranked here: Turgeon led Maryland to its best season since the 2003 national championship last year and will have a preseason top 10 team for the first time in his career.


6. Fran McCaffery, Iowa

Record at Iowa: 96-75, 42-48 Big Ten

NCAA record: 3-7

Number to note: McCaffery’s 67 wins over the last three seasons in the most for Iowa in a three-year span since Tom Davis went 77-25 from 1986-89.

Why he’s ranked here: McCaffery has revived the Hawkeyes' program, but he still has work to do to get Iowa into the same stratosphere as Michigan State, Wisconsin, Michigan and Ohio State.


7. Tom Crean, Indiana

Record at Indiana: 121-111, 49-77 Big Ten

NCAA record: 9-8, one Final Four

Number to note: Three of Crean’s last four teams have shot 40 percent or better from 3-point range.

Why he’s ranked here: Perpetually on the hot seat, Crean is entering a critical season. The Hoosiers have had a winning Big Ten record twice since he was hired in 2008.


8. Matt Painter, Purdue

Record at Purdue: 212-125, 101-75 Big Ten

NCAA record: 8-8

Number to note: Purdue has lost seven in a row to Michigan State, four in a row to Wisconsin, seven of eight to Ohio State and four of the last five against Michigan.

Why he’s ranked here: Painter has pulled Purdue out of its two-year funk since the Robbie Hummel class left. The Boilermakers have a huge season ahead of them.


9. Tim Miles, Nebraska

Record at Nebraska: 47-79, 21-33 Big Ten

NCAA record: 0-2

Number to note: Nebraska hasn’t finished in the top 100 offensive efficiency since 2000-10 or the top 90 since 2003-04. Last year’s team was the worst offensive showing for Nebraska since 2002-03.

Why he’s ranked here: This time last year, Miles appeared to have Nebraska on the rise after the Cornhuskers’ first NCAA appearance since 1998. Last season showed how far his roster has to go.


10. John Groce, Illinois

Record at Illinois: 62-42, 24-30 Big Ten

NCAA record: 4-3

Number to note: Groce has had a winning conference record just twice in seven seasons as a head coach — both of his last two years at Ohio.

Why he’s ranked here: Groce has faced some bad luck in terms of recruiting misses and injuries (the latter will continue this season), but the fact remains that Illinois was shut out of the NCAA Tournament in back-to-back years for the first time since 1991-92.


11. Richard Pitino, Minnesota

Record at Minnesota: 43-28, 14-22 Big Ten

NCAA record: 0-0

Number to note: Of Minnesota’s 13 Big Ten losses last season (including the tournament), nine were by six points or fewer.

Why he’s ranked here: Last year’s 18-15 campaign has dimmed some of the optimism around Pitino. His name has come up around other jobs, but he has yet to prove he can win with the one he has.


12. Chris Collins, Northwestern

Record at Northwestern: 29-36, 12-24 Big Ten

NCAA record: 0-0

Number to note: Collins’ 29 wins in his first two seasons is the best start for a coach in Northwestern history.

Why he’s ranked here: After two seasons of rebuilding the roster, Collins is expecting a substantial leap forward in his third season.


13. Patrick Chambers, Penn State

Record at Penn State: 56-75, 16-56 Big Ten

NCAA record: 0-1

Number to note: Penn State has had four Big Ten losing streaks of 16 games or more in the last three seasons, including an 0-14 start in 2012-13.

Why he’s ranked here: Penn State has been to three NCAA Tournaments and three NITs in the last 20 years. Chambers’ lone postseason appearance is in the CBI. A strong recruiting class in 2016 could be the turning point for his program.


14. Eddie Jordan, Rutgers

Record at Rutgers: 22-43, 7-29 American/Big Ten

NCAA record: 0-0

Number to note: Rutgers has had many bad teams, but the Scarlet Knights’ No. 215 KenPom ranking last year was their worst since 2002.

Why he’s ranked here: Jordan and Mike Krzyzewski have one thing in common: Their most recent win came against Wisconsin. Jordan’s was on Jan. 11.

Ranking the Big Ten Basketball Coaches for 2015-16
Post date: Monday, September 28, 2015 - 08:00
All taxonomy terms: College Football, News
Path: /college-football/cover-2-college-football-podcast-week-4-review-2015

Hosts Braden Gall and David Fox break down the three biggest games and storylines of Week 4.


The Pac-12 dominated the headlines in Week 4 with the State of Arizona and Oregon suffering crushing losses while Stanford, Utah and the City of Los Angeles won big. The Big 12 dealt with serious heartbreak while the SEC's pecking order is disarray. Who is to be blamed for the Vols loss in The Swamp? All of that and so much more on this edition of the Cover 2 Podcast.



Send any ideas, questions or comments to @BradenGall or @DavidFox615 or email [email protected]. The podcast can be found on and our podcast RSS feed.

Cover 2 College Football Podcast: Week 4 Review
Post date: Sunday, September 27, 2015 - 16:35
All taxonomy terms: MLB, Overtime
Path: /overtime/nationals-pitcher-jonathan-papelbon-attacks-bryce-harper-dugout

Things aren't going too well for the Nationals this season.


At some point, problems are bound to rise to the surface. During the game against the Phillies, they did just that. Bryce Harper hit a pop up and jogged to first. As the slugger got back to the dugout he received an earful from Jonathan Papelbon, who apparently wasn't too happy about it. Things then got physical.



Papelbon was left in the game while Harper was ejected, even though it looked like the pitcher was the one who started it all. 


Update: Jonathan Papelbon's season with the Nationals has come to an end for "unacceptable behavior." The closer was suspended for four games without pay and will also accept a previously imposed three-game suspension from MLB for throwing a pitch too close to the head of Orioles shortstop Manny Machado last week.

Post date: Sunday, September 27, 2015 - 16:18
All taxonomy terms: Video, videos, NFL, Overtime
Path: /nfl/jets-wr-brandon-marshall-tries-lateral-turns-ball-butt-fumble-eagles

Sometimes you watch the Jets, and there are literally no words. 


During the game against the Eagles, Brandon Marshall tried to lateral on a first down for some odd reason and of course turned the ball over. Marshall picked up 15 yards, but oh that wasn't enough.


In Jets history, is this worse than the infamous butt-fumble?


Post date: Sunday, September 27, 2015 - 14:42
All taxonomy terms: NFL, Overtime
Path: /nfl/steelers-rams-game-delayed-field-catches-fire

Burn baby, burn. This isn't a disco inferno.


The Steelers-Rams game was delayed thanks to a pyrotechnic mishap. As the Rams took the field, part of it caught on fire from the famous fireworks they let off before each game. 


In the bottom right corner you can see where the turf is catching on fire.



When in doubt, break out the shopvac. 


Post date: Sunday, September 27, 2015 - 13:38
All taxonomy terms: ACC, Air Force Falcons, Akron Zips, Alabama Crimson Tide, Appalachian State Mountaineers, Arizona State Sun Devils, Arizona Wildcats, Arkansas Razorbacks, Arkansas State Red Wolves, Army Black Knights, Army West Point Black Knights, Auburn Tigers, Ball State Cardinals, Baylor Bears, Boise State Broncos, Boston College Eagles, Bowling Green Falcons, Buffalo Bulls, BYU Cougars, California Golden Bears, Central Michigan Chippewas, Charlotte 49ers, Cincinnati Bearcats, Clemson Tigers, College Football, Colorado Buffaloes, Colorado State Rams, Connecticut Huskies, Duke Blue Devils, East Carolina Pirates, Eastern Michigan Eagles, FAU Owls, FIU Panthers, Florida Gators, Florida State Seminoles, Fresno State Bulldogs, Georgia Bulldogs, Georgia Southern Eagles, Georgia State Panthers, Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets, Hawaii Warriors, Houston Cougars, Idaho Vandals, Illinois Fighting Illini, Indiana Hoosiers, Iowa Hawkeyes, Iowa State Cyclones, Kansas Jayhawks, Kansas State Wildcats, Kent State Golden Flashes, Kentucky Wildcats, Louisiana Tech Bulldogs, Louisville Cardinals, LSU Tigers, Marshall Thundering Herd, Maryland Terrapins, Memphis Tigers, Miami Hurricanes, Miami Ohio RedHawks, Michigan State Spartans, Michigan Wolverines, Minnesota Golden Gophers, Mississippi State Bulldogs, Missouri Tigers, MTSU Blue Raiders, Navy Midshipmen, NC State Wolfpack, Nebraska Cornhuskers, Nevada Wolf Pack, New Mexico Lobos, New Mexico State Aggies, North Carolina Tar Heels, North Texas Mean Green, Northern Illinois Huskies, Northwestern Wildcats, Notre Dame Fighting Irish, Ohio Bobcats, Ohio State Buckeyes, Oklahoma Sooners, Oklahoma State Cowboys, Old Dominion Monarchs, Ole Miss Rebels, Oregon Ducks, Oregon State Beavers, Penn State Nittany Lions, Pittsburgh Panthers, Purdue Boilermakers, Rice Owls, Rutgers Scarlet Knights, San Diego State Aztecs, San Jose State Spartans, SMU Mustangs, South Alabama Jaguars, South Carolina Gamecocks, South Florida Bulls, Southern Miss Golden Eagles, Stanford Cardinal, Syracuse Orange, TCU Horned Frogs, Temple Owls, Tennessee Volunteers, Texas A&M Aggies, Texas Longhorns, Texas State Bobcats, Texas Tech Red Raiders, Toledo Rockets, Troy Trojans, Tulane Green Wave, Tulsa Golden Hurricane, UAB Blazers, UCF Knights, UCLA Bruins, UConn Huskies, UL Lafayette Ragin Cajuns, UL Monroe Warhawks, UMass Minutemen, UNLV Rebels, USC Trojans, Utah State Aggies, Utah Utes, UTEP Miners, UTSA Roadrunners, Vanderbilt Commodores, Virginia Cavaliers, Virginia Tech Hokies, Wake Forest Demon Deacons, Washington Huskies, Washington State Cougars, West Virginia Mountaineers, Western Kentucky Hilltoppers, Western Michigan Broncos, Wisconsin Badgers, Wyoming Cowboys, American Athletic, Big 12, Big Ten, Conference USA, Independents, MAC, Mountain West, Pac 12, SEC, Sun Belt, News
Path: /college-football/10-amazing-college-football-stats-week-4-2015

Numbers and statistics are a huge part of college football. Every Sunday, reading updated box scores and stats is like Christmas for fans and media members. Some stats like total offense and total defense are overrated, but each help paint a picture for a team or particular game.


Whether the stats are historic, advanced or just an observation from a box score, Athlon Sports brings the most intriguing, important, historic and bizarre stats from around the weekend of college football action:


10 Amazing College Football Stats from Week 4


62: Points Scored by Utah in Victory Over Oregon

Utah turned in one of the most impressive performances of Week 4, thoroughly dominating Oregon 62-20 in Eugene. The 62 points scored by the Utes were the most by any road opponent in Autzen Stadium history. All three sides of the ball were critical in scoring the upset, as the offense averaged 7.2 yards per play, the defense held the Ducks to 13 points in the first half, and the special teams duo of kicker Andy Phillips and punter Tom Hackett delivered with key plays.


Related: College Football's Week 4 Awards


0-9: Arkansas’ Record Under Bret Bielema in Games Decided by 7 Points or Less

Arkansas was considered a team on the rise entering 2015. But after four games, the Razorbacks might be lucky just to get to a bowl game. Winning close games has been a problem for this program under third-year coach Bret Bielema, as the Razorbacks are 0-9 in matchups decided by a touchdown or less. The bad luck (or inability?) to win close games continued in Week 4, as Arkansas fell 28-21 to Texas A&M in overtime.


200+: Back-to-back 200-Yard Games by LSU RB Leonard Fournette

Another Saturday, another impressive performance from LSU running back Leonard Fournette. The sophomore rushed for 244 yards and two scores on 26 attempts in LSU’s 34-24 victory at Syracuse. Fournette’s back-to-back 200-yard games are the first in program history, and the sophomore’s 631 yards through three games is the best mark by a FBS rusher in the last 15 years.


Related: 20 Plays That Define College Football's Crazy Week 4 Games


1,357 and 107: Combined Yards and Points in TCU’s 55-52 Win Over Texas Tech

As expected, TCU and Texas Tech provided plenty of offensive fireworks in Week 4. The Red Raiders and Horned Frogs combined for 1,357 total yards and 107 overall points in the thrilling 55-52 win by TCU. The box score is a dream for fans of offense, as these two teams combined for only seven punts, nearly 900 passing yards and 70 first downs.


3.6: Tennessee’s Average Yards Per Play in Second Half Games Against Oklahoma and Florida

Tennessee is just a couple of plays away from a 4-0 record. However, the Volunteers have sputtered on offense in the second half of games against Florida and Oklahoma. Excluding overtime versus the Sooners, Tennessee ran 68 plays in the final two quarters against the Gators and Sooners and mustered only 245 total yards and 10 points. Whether the play-calling is too conservative or personnel issues are too much to overcome, the Volunteers left a lot to be desired on offense in two very winnable games. And as mentioned by ESPN’s Dari Nowkhah on Saturday night, FBS teams are 188-3 when leading by 13 points in the fourth quarter this season. Two of those losses belong to Tennessee.


5: Rushing Touchdowns Needed by Navy QB Keenan Reynolds to Set FBS Record

Navy quarterback Keenan Reynolds is closing in on former Wisconsin running back Montee Ball’s FBS rushing touchdown record after scoring three times on the ground in Week 4. In the Midshipmen’s 28-18 win over UConn, Reynolds led the way for Navy’s offense, recording 142 yards and three scores on the ground, while completing three of four passes for 40 yards and a touchdown. Reynolds ranks No. 2 in FBS history with 73 rushing scores and needs five more to break Ball’s record (77).


Related: College Football's All-Injured Team for 2015


31: Consecutive Road Losses by Kansas

Kansas’ struggles on the road continued on Saturday, as the Jayhawks lost 27-14 to Rutgers to drop to 0-3 under new coach David Beaty. The loss against the Scarlet Knights was the 31st consecutive defeat by this program in road games. The 31-game road losing streak is the longest since 1978, surpassing Kansas State and Akron’s 30-game mark. Barring a surprise upset, the Jayhawks are headed for an 0-12 record this season.


105: Total Yards Allowed by Michigan Against BYU

Lost in Harbaugh mania in Ann Arbor has been the play of Michigan’s defense through the first four games of 2015. This unit delivered a dominant performance against BYU, limiting the Cougars to just 105 overall yards, zero points and a 4 of 15 mark on third-down attempts. BYU crossed midfield only three times on 12 possessions and never reached Michigan’s 40-yard line.


440: Average Passing Yards a Game by Bowling Green QB Matt Johnson

Bowling Green’s “Falcon Fast” offense has been flying high in 2015. Johnson has recorded four straight 400-yard games to open the season and has 13 passing scores through the first four contests. Johnson is averaging 440 passing yards per game and has 1,760 overall so far. Assuming the Falcons win the MAC East and play in a bowl, Johnson has 10 remaining contests in 2015 and needs to average around 410 passing yards a game to break the FBS single-season record held by former Texas Tech quarterback B.J. Symons.


12: Georgia RB Nick Chubb’s Consecutive Games of 100 Rushing Yards

While most of the nation focuses on LSU running back Leonard Fournette, Chubb quietly continues to post big numbers for the Bulldogs. In an easy win over Southern, the sophomore rushed for 131 yards on 15 carries, which was his 12th consecutive 100-yard performance. Chubb is one 100-yard game away from tying the school mark by Herschel Walker. Of course, getting No. 13 won’t be easy with Alabama up next for Georgia in Week 5.

10 Amazing College Football Stats from Week 4 2015
Post date: Sunday, September 27, 2015 - 12:00
All taxonomy terms: Denver Broncos, Detroit Lions, NFL
Path: /nfl/denver-broncos-vs-detroit-lions-preview-and-prediction-2015

Two weeks ago, this game was considered must-see television. Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos coming to town for a matchup with an up-and-coming Lions team with unlimited offensive firepower. But as of Wednesday, there were still tickets available for the Detroit season home opener, likely due in part to a 0-2 record where the Lions have looked completely inept on both sides of the football.


Lions’ players and coaches continue to insist the season is a marathon and not a race, but with the Seahawks and Cardinals still on the horizon following this Week 3 matchup with a 2-0 Broncos team, Detroit is already in a must-win situation.


Denver at Detroit

Kickoff: 8:30 p.m. ET (Sunday)
TV Channel: NBC
Spread: Broncos -2.5


Three Things to Watch


1. Rodney Harrison talks Matthew Stafford
The "Sunday Night Football" analyst did not back down from his comments this week after saying the Lions’ quarterback does not have much respect around the locker room following a late hit from Vikings linebacker Anthony Barr. “This is a cheap shot right here, and nobody comes to his defense except a rookie lineman,” Harrison stated on the telecast. “This is crazy. This just shows me how much respect this team has for Matthew Stafford. Not a lot.” Harrison reiterated his point again this week on Pro Football Talk, posing the question “do you think the Patriots would let this happen or the Indianapolis Colts or the Denver Broncos to Peyton Manning? Never, not on his sideline.” This topic will surely come up again for what should make for some interesting pre-game discussion.


2. Protection Issues
Both teams are struggling mightily to keep their quarterbacks upright to start the season. Stafford has been bruised and battered in the first two weeks, and despite being listed as Probable vs. Denver, the Lions' quarterback is likely to be playing with sore ribs. Quick passes may be the name of the game for Detroit to protect its starting quarterback. On the flipside, the Broncos are tied for fourth in sacks allowed with seven. The presence of a rushing attack would ease some of that pressure, but the Broncos have averaged just 2.8 yards per attempt. Whichever team keeps its quarterback the cleanest will likely come out on top.


3. Autograph session
On Sunday, Detroit cornerback Darius Slay will get his first opportunity to go against one of his favorite quarterbacks while growing up, Peyton Manning. And if he is fortunate enough to get an interception, the third-year pro will not hesitate to ask for an autograph from the future Hall-of-Famer. "I'm letting him know now, if I get a pick from him, he's got to sign that," Slay told the Detroit Free Press earlier this week. "He's got to sign that. I got to have that. He got a signature right then on the spot. I'm going to have the pen in my pocket.”


Final Analysis


This game may just come down to which offensive line can hold up the longest. If the offensive line concerns on both sides are a wash, then the determining factor may be which defense can generate a pass rush on the opposing quarterback. Give me the Von Miller/DeMarcus Ware combination in that battle. The Lions will keep it close early on with a boost from the crowd in the home opener, but they are clearly not the same team from a year ago and will fall to 0-3.


Prediction: Broncos 31, Lions 20


— Written by Mike Bainbridge, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network. Bainbridge is a graduate of Northern Illinois University and current writer for Make sure to follow him on Twitter @MikeBainbridge2.

Denver Broncos vs. Detroit Lions Preview and Prediction
Post date: Sunday, September 27, 2015 - 08:45
All taxonomy terms: Chicago Bears, NFC, Seattle Seahawks, NFL
Path: /nfl/chicago-bears-vs-seattle-seahawks-preview-and-prediction-2015

Its must-win Sunday for the Seattle Seahawks and the Chicago Bears as both teams are off to 0-2 starts. The Seahawks had a 17-16 lead in the fourth quarter at Lambeau Field last Sunday against Green Bay, but they just could not slow down Aaron Rodgers late, as the Packers pulled away for a 27-17 win. Consequently, Seattle now has its back against the wall moving forward this season if Pete Carroll's team is going to get one of the top two seeds in the NFC playoffs.


The Bears are in a transition season for first-year head coach John Fox and are looking to find their way defensively as they have allowed 79 points in two games. Then, on top of that they will be without starting quarterback Jay Cutler, who is out for multiple weeks due to a hamstring injury. Backup Jimmy Clausen will be under the center at CenturyLink Field. This creates a very ominous uphill battle for Chicago to try and send the Seahawks to 0-3 in front of an angry group of 12s.


Chicago at Seattle


Kickoff: 4:25 p.m. ET (Sunday)
TV Channel: CBS
Spread: Seattle -15 O/U 45


Three Things to Watch


1. Kam Chancellor returns

Common sense finally prevailed in the ongoing Chancellor saga, as he finally reported to the Virginia Mason Athletic Center and got back to work. For Chancellor, the mission is going to be plain and simple - he needs to go out and make plays and act like the leader that he thinks he is. It is also going to be very fascinating to see what type of reaction he gets on Sunday from the crowd if the defense is introduced first. The odds are that Chancellor will get a mixed reaction from the crowd if the Seattle sports radio caller sample size is any indication, as callers were not so quick to forgive Chancellor right away.


2.  Getting Jimmy Graham involved early

After only targeting the All-Pro tight end just twice last week in the loss to Green Bay the question has to be asked why go out and acquire an elite pass-catching playmaker like Graham if you are not going to use him. On Friday, Graham did his part to downplay reports that he is frustrated with his role in the Seahawks' offense in response to a report earlier in the week he was “pissed off” about his role. It would be a wise decision by offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell and Carroll to get Graham touches early on in this game, especially in the red zone. Otherwise, the Seahawks will run the risk of this becoming a potential chemistry issue within the locker room if they don’t take a proactive approach to use Graham properly as a pass catcher.


3. Seahawks' running game
With Marshawn Lynch battling a calf issue that puts him as a game-time decision, it will be a great opportunity to turn Fred Jackson loose if Lynch is unable to go. Jackson has the ability as a runner and especially as a pass catcher out of the backfield to help keep the chains moving if Lynch can’t play. Russell Wilson also needs to continually be let loose with the read-option packages. The Seahawks offensively started to get into a nice rhythm in the third quarter against the Packers when they scored 14 points as a result of Wilson using his legs more with the zone-read element of the offense. Also, a concerted effort to pound the football down the throats of a suspect Bears defense should give some confidence to a Seahawks offensive line that needs to continue to grow as a unit and running the football is the best recipe to jumpstart that.

Final Analysis


This should be a very straightforward type of home opener for Seattle, as Chicago just simply does not have the horses to stay with the Seahawks over the course of 60 minutes. An ideal start would be to put together an opening, 10-play, 75-yard drive that's finished off with a Jimmy Graham touchdown to put the Bears down early. Then defensive coordinator Kris Richard needs to allow his charges to go aggressively after Clausen, who will be making just his second start in the last five seasons. The end result of this game if it goes to plan should have Tavaris Jackson getting some playing time in the fourth quarter and Seattle should easily cover the 15-point spread on Sunday with a confidence-building win.

Prediction: Seattle 41, Chicago 17


— Written by Scott Whittum, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network and also writes for College Sports Madness, covering college football, basketball, softball and baseball. Follow him on Twitter @scottwhittum.

Chicago Bears vs. Seattle Seahawks Preview and Prediction
Post date: Sunday, September 27, 2015 - 08:30
All taxonomy terms: ACC, Air Force Falcons, Akron Zips, Alabama Crimson Tide, Appalachian State Mountaineers, Arizona State Sun Devils, Arizona Wildcats, Arkansas Razorbacks, Arkansas State Red Wolves, Army Black Knights, Army West Point Black Knights, Auburn Tigers, Ball State Cardinals, Baylor Bears, Boise State Broncos, Boston College Eagles, Bowling Green Falcons, Buffalo Bulls, BYU Cougars, California Golden Bears, Central Michigan Chippewas, Charlotte 49ers, Cincinnati Bearcats, Clemson Tigers, College Football, Colorado Buffaloes, Colorado State Rams, Connecticut Huskies, Duke Blue Devils, East Carolina Pirates, Eastern Michigan Eagles, FAU Owls, FIU Panthers, Florida Gators, Florida State Seminoles, Fresno State Bulldogs, Georgia Bulldogs, Georgia Southern Eagles, Georgia State Panthers, Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets, Hawaii Warriors, Houston Cougars, Idaho Vandals, Illinois Fighting Illini, Indiana Hoosiers, Iowa Hawkeyes, Iowa State Cyclones, Kansas Jayhawks, Kansas State Wildcats, Kent State Golden Flashes, Kentucky Wildcats, Louisiana Tech Bulldogs, Louisville Cardinals, LSU Tigers, Marshall Thundering Herd, Maryland Terrapins, Memphis Tigers, Miami Hurricanes, Miami Ohio RedHawks, Michigan State Spartans, Michigan Wolverines, Minnesota Golden Gophers, Mississippi State Bulldogs, Missouri Tigers, MTSU Blue Raiders, Navy Midshipmen, NC State Wolfpack, Nebraska Cornhuskers, Nevada Wolf Pack, New Mexico Lobos, New Mexico State Aggies, North Carolina Tar Heels, North Texas Mean Green, Northern Illinois Huskies, Northwestern Wildcats, Notre Dame Fighting Irish, Ohio Bobcats, Ohio State Buckeyes, Oklahoma Sooners, Oklahoma State Cowboys, Old Dominion Monarchs, Ole Miss Rebels, Oregon Ducks, Oregon State Beavers, Penn State Nittany Lions, Pittsburgh Panthers, Purdue Boilermakers, Rice Owls, Rutgers Scarlet Knights, San Diego State Aztecs, San Jose State Spartans, SMU Mustangs, South Alabama Jaguars, South Carolina Gamecocks, South Florida Bulls, Southern Miss Golden Eagles, Stanford Cardinal, Syracuse Orange, TCU Horned Frogs, Temple Owls, Tennessee Volunteers, Texas A&M Aggies, Texas Longhorns, Texas State Bobcats, Texas Tech Red Raiders, Toledo Rockets, Troy Trojans, Tulane Green Wave, Tulsa Golden Hurricane, UAB Blazers, UCF Knights, UCLA Bruins, UConn Huskies, UL Lafayette Ragin Cajuns, UL Monroe Warhawks, UMass Minutemen, UNLV Rebels, USC Trojans, Utah State Aggies, Utah Utes, UTEP Miners, UTSA Roadrunners, Vanderbilt Commodores, Virginia Cavaliers, Virginia Tech Hokies, Wake Forest Demon Deacons, Washington Huskies, Washington State Cougars, West Virginia Mountaineers, Western Kentucky Hilltoppers, Western Michigan Broncos, Wisconsin Badgers, Wyoming Cowboys, American Athletic, Big 12, Big Ten, Conference USA, Independents, MAC, Mountain West, Pac 12, SEC, News
Path: /college-football/college-football-week-4-awards-2015

Week 4 of the 2015 college football season is in the books. The Pac-12 was the conference in the spotlight on Saturday, as Arizona-UCLA, Oregon-Utah and Arizona State-USC were some of the weekend’s most anticipated matchups. However, all three games produced one-sided results. The mid-afternoon slate produced some of the best games from Week 4, including wild finishes at Tennessee-Florida and TCU-Texas Tech.


With another weekend of action in the books, it’s time to hand out the hardware to honor the best of the best from Week 4. Here’s a look at Athlon Sports’ picks for the offensive, defensive, coordinator, freshman and unsung hero from Week 4:


College Football Week 4 Awards


Co-Offensive Players of the Week: Trevone Boykin, QB/Josh Doctson, WR, TCU

We normally pick just one player for this award, but it’s hard to separate the performances of Boykin and Doctson since this duo delivered in the clutch for TCU on Saturday. Boykin completed 34 of 54 passes for 485 yards and four scores and also rushed for 42 yards on 14 attempts. Doctson was Boykin’s preferred target in the last-minute win over the Red Raiders, catching 18 passes for 267 yards and three scores.


Defensive Player of the Week: Jeremy Cash, S, Duke

Duke’s defense held Georgia Tech’s high-powered rushing attack in check on Saturday. The Yellow Jackets managed only 2.9 yards per carry and finished with only 173 yards on the ground. Cash was instrumental in the success of the defense on Saturday, recording 12 tackles (three for a loss), one sack and two forced fumbles.


Coordinators of the Week: Aaron Roderick/Jim Harding, Co-Offensive Coordinators, Utah

Utah’s gameplan on Saturday for its upset win at Oregon was flawless. The defense held the Ducks to just 20 points, while the offense recorded 7.2 yards per play, scored 62 points – the most by an opponent in Autzen Stadium history – and went 6 of 13 on third-down attempts. Roderick and Harding used a good mix of the run (273 yards), along with efficient passing from quarterback Travis Wilson (18 of 30 for 227 yards) to score one of the 42-point win in Eugene.


Freshman of the Week: Josh Rosen, QB, UCLA

A number of freshmen are worthy of a mention in this space, but it’s hard to pick against Rosen. The true freshman delivered a steady performance (19 of 28 for 284 yards and two scores) in UCLA’s 56-30 road win over Arizona in the Pac-12 opener for both teams. Rosen did not throw an interception against the Wildcats and also added a rushing touchdown in the third quarter.


Unsung Hero of the Week: Tyler Ervin, RB, San Jose State

Ervin’s performance against Fresno State will be overshadowed by what transpired between Texas Tech-TCU and LSU running back Leonard Fournette's monster game against Syracuse, but the senior posted a record-setting performance against the Bulldogs. Ervin rushed for 300 yards and three scores on 42 attempts and caught four passes for 45 yards in Saturday’s win, setting school records for most rushing yards and taking the top spot among all FBS players in 2015 for best single-game rushing performance. 

College Football Week 4 Awards
Post date: Sunday, September 27, 2015 - 08:25
All taxonomy terms: College Football, News
Path: /college-football/20-plays-defined-college-footballs-crazy-week-4-games-2015

Week 4 of college football’s 2015 season was crazy. While the schedule wasn’t deep with top 25 matchups, the slate produced several games decided in the final minute, unbelievable finishes, crazy plays and strange coaching decisions.


Don’t believe us? From the great plays to the crazy finishes, check out these 20 plays that defined Week 4. 


20 Plays That Defined CFB's Crazy Slate of Results in Week 4


1. TCU scores on tipped pass on fourth down to defeat Texas Tech:


2. Florida quarterback Will Grier hits receiver Antonio Callaway for a 63-yard touchdown pass on fourth and 14 for the winning score:


3. Tennessee kicker Aaron Medley misses game-winning field goal as time expires (and coach Butch Jones seems to celebrate a little too early):


4. Forced fumble by Texas A&M prevents Arkansas from winning late in the fourth quarter, as the Aggies later win in overtime:


5. Texas loses after punter loses snap late in fourth quarter, allowing Oklahoma State to kick game-winning field goal:


6. Rare penalty costs Ohio a chance to tie Minnesota with seven seconds left in fourth quarter:


7. Michigan running back De'Veon Smith disappears...then reappears for a 60-yard touchdown run:


8. LSU quarterback Brandon Harris somehow flips ball to running back Leonard Fournette for a huge gain:


9. Utah running back Devontae Booker throws a touchdown pass in a road win against Oregon:


10. West Virginia receiver Shelton Gibson runs into Maryland cheerleader:


11. Michigan receiver Amara Darboh makes a nifty one-handed grab in blowout win over BYU:


12. Utah fools Oregon special teams with decoy on return:


13. Penn State defensive tackle Austin Johnson returns a fumble for a touchdown:


14. Texas Tech QB Patrick Mahomes doesn't see snap going behind him for a TCU safety:


15. Syracuse punter Riley Dixon hurdles LSU defender on fake field goal attempt:


16. East Carolina wide receiver Isaiah Jones makes a one-handed catch to help the Pirates upset Virginia Tech:


17. Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy breaks out the dances moves after win over Texas:


18. Ole Miss defensive tackle Robert Nkemdiche scores third touchdown of the year on offense:


19. Overzealous official flags Texas coach Charlie Strong 15 yards for unsportsmanlike conduct:


20. USC WR/CB Adoree' Jackson makes a ridiculous stop and go move against Arizona State:

20 Plays That Defined College Football's Crazy Week 4 Slate
Post date: Sunday, September 27, 2015 - 08:20
Path: /nfl/san-francisco-49ers-vs-arizona-cardinals-preview-and-prediction-2015

When quarterback Carson Palmer was injured last season, the Cardinals were thinking big: playoffs — and beyond. Arizona was 9-1 and cruising. Palmer was piloting an offense that was extremely potent and looked practically unstoppable at times. After two games in 2015, ‘Zona appears to be back on that track, and the Cards get a chance Sunday to take a big NFC West step by dumping the visiting Niners.


Offense isn’t a problem for San Francisco this season. It’s the other side of the ball that has caused some problems, particularly against the pass. If the 49ers don’t tighten things up, it won’t matter how well Colin Kaepernick (69.4 percent completion rate) is slinging it, they will be in trouble. A team that for the past few years tried to win games by playing solid defense and low-risk O has found itself in an opposite situation, thanks to injuries and retirements. SF can’t afford to let things get out of hand this week against a potent Cardinal attack.


San Francisco at Arizona


Kickoff: 4:05 p.m. ET


Spread: Arizona -6.5


Three Things to Watch


1. Larry Land

Arizona receiver Larry Fitzgerald was the NFC Offensive Player of the Week after catching eight passes for 112 yards and a regular-season personal best of three TDs in the Cards’ rout of Chicago. Fitzgerald is averaging 14.4 yards on his 14 catches so far and appears to be completely back to his Pro Bowl form.


“What I’m capable of doing, what I’ve done, it speaks for itself,” Fitzgerald said. “At this point, I’m just more so happy to be on a team that really has an opportunity to do something special.” With Palmer completing 64.3% of his passes and throwing seven TDs against one interception, it would appear as if Fitzgerald’s prosperity will continue.


2. Statistically Speaking

The Niners are enjoying some great individual performances on offense. Kaepernick has been exceedingly accurate, and running back Carlos Hyde has run for 211 yards and two scores, while averaging 5.4 yards/carry. Kaepernick is spreading the ball around well — Anquan Boldin and Vernon Davis have combined for 19 catches — and the Niners appear to have their attack running at a good clip.


3. D-ficient

Even though new Niners head coach Jim Tomsula has a defensive background, his team struggled mightily last week in the 43-18 loss to the Steelers. Ben Roethlisberger threw for 369 yards and three TDs in the rout, and opposing QBs are completing 74.6 percent of their throws. Unless the Niners tighten things up, there could be big trouble on Sunday in the desert.


Final Analysis


This is a huge game for the Niners, who run the risk of falling two games behind the Cards in the standings and helping Arizona get another quick start. San Francisco cannot afford to let Palmer get comfortable in the pocket, because he is extremely confident right now, and with Hyde to provide some balance, has the ability to lean on the running game if SF decides to blitz too much.


The Cardinals have a great opportunity to step forward in the West, and they can do it in front of their home crowd. There is no reason to think Arizona isn’t capable of the big start they authored last year, particularly in an NFC West that looks pretty wide open now. Jumping to 3-0 could set up big things down the road.


Prediction: Cardinals 31, Niners 23


— Written by Michael Bradley, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network. Bradley is a writer and broadcaster based in suburban Philadelphia. Follow him on Twitter @DailyHombre.

San Francisco 49ers vs. Arizona Cardinals Preview and Prediction
Post date: Sunday, September 27, 2015 - 08:15
All taxonomy terms: AFC, AFC East, Buffalo Bills, Miami Dolphins, NFL
Path: /nfl/buffalo-bills-vs-miami-dolphins-preview-and-prediction-2015

After suffering a shocking defeat at the hands of the Jacksonville Jaguars last week, the Miami Dolphins will return home to play in their first regular season home game of 2015 against their archrivals, the Buffalo Bills. The Dolphins hold a 58-43-1 (including postseason) advantage in their divisional rivalry against the Bills. The last time these two times played, Miami defeated Buffalo, 22-9, last November on "Thursday Night Football."


Buffalo is also coming off a loss as they were defeated 40-32 at the hands of the New England Patriots. In Week 1, the Bills manhandled the Indianapolis Colts 27-14 behind three Colts turnovers.


Buffalo at Miami


Kickoff: 4:25 p.m. ET (Sunday)

TV Channel: CBS

Spread: Miami -2.5


Three Things to Watch For


1. Miami’s offensive line

Despite changes throughout the years, the Dolphins offensive line has remained a problem for them each of the last three seasons. Former Pro Bowl left tackle Branden Albert was limited to 19 snaps against Jacksonville last week as he is still trying to recover from his knee injury from last season. His replacement, Jason Fox was mediocre at best.


Miami’s guards have also been a problem as Pro Football Focus ranks Jamil Douglas (72nd) and Dallas Thomas (74th) among the worst guards on their list. The poor play on the offensive line has not only affected quarterback Ryan Tannehill and the Dolphins passing game but also the team’s running game.


This week, Miami’s offensive line will be going up against arguably the best defensive line in the NFL. Last season, Buffalo led the NFL in sacks with 54 and they have three Pro Bowlers (Mario Williams, Kyle Williams and Marcell Dareus) on their defensive line.


Dolphins quarterback Ryan Tannehill has been sacked five times this season against average defensive lines in Washington and Jacksonville. Just imagine what the Bills defensive line could do against a subpar Dolphins offensive line.


2. Tyrod Taylor

Against the Colts in Week 1, Taylor played a very efficient game as he finished 14-of-19 for 195 yards with a touchdown pass and a total quarterback rating of 88.2. While he threw for 242 yards and three touchdowns last week against New England, Taylor also threw three interceptions and finished with an overall total quarterback rating of 32.6.


Patriots coach Bill Belichick made Taylor a pure pocket passer last week and that was the primary reason for the turnovers and the eight sacks on the quarterback. If Taylor can roll out of the pocket like he did in Week 1, this will give the Bills receiver a better chance to extend plays down the field. 


“He’s (Taylor) a very talented young man,” said Bills coach Rex Ryan on a conference call on Wednesday. He’s got some poise, he can all the throws and he can run.”


While Taylor rallied the Bills late in the fourth quarter, his mistakes were too much to overcome. Miami’s defense only has one sack on the season, so they will have to use the Belichick blueprint in order to slow down the mobile Taylor.


3. Dolphins' defense

For all the talk from the Dolphins players about how they could have the best defense in the NFL during the preseason, the unit has been anything but during the first two weeks of the season. Miami currently ranks 23rd overall in total defense, which includes having the 27th-best rushing defense in the NFL.


“Obviously we have high expectations about not just the pass rush but just the overall play of our group,” said Dolphins defensive coordinator Kevin Coyle after Sunday’s loss. “I think we would have certainly expected more through two games, but yet, I think we are seeing things that we anticipated from our opponents."


This week, Miami will have to contain one of the best running backs in the league in Bills' LeSean McCoy. While he has only rushed for 130 yards this season, McCoy is capable of having a big game against the Dolphins defense. Last season while playing for the Eagles, McCoy rushed for 1,319 yards and five touchdowns.


Miami has given up an average of 142 rushing yards per game in their first two games. If McCoy can run against the Dolphins defense, that will take pressure off of the Bills inexperienced quarterback, Taylor.


Final Analysis


Miami’s biggest problem the first two weeks of the season is their lack of in-game adjustments. They have failed to make the necessary changes to what teams are doing to them defensively and that’s why they struggled against Washington and lost to Jacksonville last week.


Buffalo is far more talented than the Redskins and Jaguars and they should be able to exploit a lot of the Dolphins weaknesses. Expect the Bills to run the football early and often on Sunday, which should set up opportunities for play action passes from Taylor and the Bills offense.


The Dolphins will have an uphill day trying to contain the Bills defensive line. Ryan is one of the best defensive coaches in the NFL and he will scheme a way to have constant pressure on Tannehill. 


Miami has to be able to run the football against Buffalo in order to win this game. The Dolphins ranked 30th in the NFL in rushing after the first two weeks. If Tannehill has to throw the ball 30 times or more to defeat the Bills, that will play right into Buffalo’s strengths.


Prediction: Buffalo 24, Miami 21


— Written by Antwan Staley, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network and has extensive experience covering Florida sports teams. Staley has written for Bleacher Report, Pro Player Insiders and is a reporter for Sports Talk Florida. Follow him on Twitter @antwanstaley.

Buffalo Bills vs. Miami Dolphins Preview and Prediction
Post date: Sunday, September 27, 2015 - 08:00
All taxonomy terms: Fantasy Football, injury updates, NFL, Fantasy
Path: /fantasy/fantasy-football-week-3-injury-updates-marshawn-lynch-lamar-miller-eddie-lacy-lesean-mccoy

There are no lack of running backs appearing on the Week 3 injury report. The late Sunday games alone is full of top-10 options entering this season, and that group doesn't include Eddie Lacy, who is Questionable for Monday night. So what should a worried fantasy owner do? Be sure to read the latest on these banged-up ball carriers below and check out the other key RB injuries before setting your lineup and then do what everyone else does — sit back and hope for the best. Also, don't forget about the important WR and QB/TE injuries.


Marshawn Lynch, RB, Seattle Seahawks vs. Chicago Bears (Sunday, 4:25 p.m.)

Questionable – Calf

After Lynch missed practice on Wednesday, fantasy owners thought it was just for a day of rest. He returned to practice in a limited capacity on Thursday and everyone breathed a sigh of relief. Then Lynch did not practice on Friday, which raised alarm bells. The Seahawks have said that he is going to be a game-time decision after testing his calf. This is the toughest call of the week. If he plays, Lynch is a clear RB1 against a terrible Bears defense. If he doesn't play, fantasy owners need to have a better option that is playing in the later Sunday games or Monday night.


Lamar Miller, RB, Miami Dolphins vs. Buffalo Bills (Sunday, 4:25 p.m.)

Questionable – Ankle

Miller injured his ankle in Week 2 and put in limited practices Thursday and Friday. He is on track to play, despite the Dolphins signing Jonas Gray from the practice squad. That may have just been an insurance move. Look for Miller to struggle on Sunday against a tough Bills defense. Between the matchup and the injury, Miller is a low-end RB2 this week with little upside.


Eddie Lacy, RB, Green Bay Packers vs. Kansas City Chiefs (Monday, 8:30 p.m.)

Questionable – Ankle

During Week 2, Lacy injured his ankle and did not return to the game. He missed practice time this week, but did put in a limited practice on Friday. The reports out of Green Bay are optimistic that he will suit up and play. However, not playing until Monday night leaves fantasy owners with a tough decision. Hopefully Lacy owners also have James Starks and just have to play one of them on Monday. If you are a Lacy owner without Starks, you may want to play it safe and start a running back you know is playing. Lacy could still be a RB1 for those willing to roll the dice to wait and see if he plays.


LeSean McCoy, RB, Buffalo Bills at Miami Dolphins (Sunday, 4:25 p.m.)

Probable – Hamstring

McCoy has been dealing with a bum hamstring since the preseason, but he was able to practice in full this past week. He is going to play this weekend and is a RB1. His Week 1 totals were low, but in Week 2, he rushed for 89 yards and caught three passes for 27 yards. Expect him to improve on those numbers against a weaker-than-expected Dolphins defense.


C.J. Anderson, RB, Denver Broncos at Detroit Lions (Sunday, 8:30 p.m.)

Probable – Ankle

Anderson had been battling ankle/toe injuries, but he claims that he is healthy for Week 3. He will play, but the question is how effective will he be. In danger of losing the starting job to Ronnie Hillman, Anderson is on a short leash. Anderson will still likely split carries with Hillman, but he should get another chance at establishing his role as Hillman hasn't run away with the job. If Anderson can get the red zone carries (and convert them and not fumble), he should keep his job. For Week 3, he's a RB2.


Matt Forte, RB, Chicago Bears at Seattle Seahawks (Sunday, 4:25 p.m.)

Probable – Knee

Forte was limited in practice this week, thus earning the Probable tag. However, he is going to play. He's still an RB1 in Week 3, despite a tough matchup against the Seahawks. With Jimmy Clausen at the helm, expect Chicago to try to run the ball as much as possible. Forte is a solid pass-catching back as well, thus cementing his RB1 status, especially in PPR leagues.


— Written by Sarah Lewis, who is part of the Athlon Contributor network and lives, eats, and breathes fantasy football. She also writes for among other sites. Have a fantasy football question? Send it to her on Twitter @Sarah_Lewis32.

Fantasy Football Week 3 Injury Updates: Marshawn Lynch, Lamar Miller, Eddie Lacy, LeSean McCoy
Post date: Sunday, September 27, 2015 - 06:30
All taxonomy terms: Fantasy Football, injury updates, NFL, Fantasy
Path: /fantasy/week-3-fantasy-football-injury-updates-demarco-murray-chris-ivory-jonathan-stewart-todd-gurley-carlos-hyde

Week 2 was brutal in terms of injuries, as the list of running backs this week is longer than ever. There are plenty of big names on the injury report, so your backfield's depth may be tested this week. It's always hard to trust a player that has been injured all week, even if they have been solid for your team so far. Let's analyze the first wave of running back injuries and their playing status for Sunday below, and then be sure to check out the rest here. Don't forget about the WR and QB/TE injury updates as well.


Note: if a game date and time isn't included, the player is playing at 1 p.m. EST on Sunday.


DeMarco Murray, RB, Philadelphia Eagles at New York Jets

Questionable – Hamstring

Murray played in Week 2 (although was ineffective with 13 carries for two yards and five receptions for 53 yards), but injured his hamstring in practice on Wednesday. He sat out Thursday, but returned to full practice on Friday. He is on track to play, but based on his Week 2 performance, plus the matchup, is a RB2 on name value only. The Jets have not allowed a rushing touchdown yet this year and the longest run they've allowed has been 18 yards.


Chris Ivory, RB, New York Jets vs. Philadelphia Eagles

Questionable – Quad/Groin

It's already been said that Ivory will be a game-time decision with his groin/quad injury. Because there is a chance Ivory could make the injury worse by playing through it, fantasy owners should not count on having him in Week 3. He did put in a limited practice on Friday, but the Jets will likely rest him this week. Bilal Powell will get the start but is a RB3. The good news is fantasy owners will know early if Ivory is playing or not.


Jonathan Stewart, RB, Carolina Panthers vs. New Orleans Saints

Questionable – Knee

While Stewart hasn't exactly been spectacular so far this season (18 carries for 56 yards in Week 1, 17 carries for 62 yards in Week 2), he is the lead back on a team that likes to run the ball. He missed practice with a knee injury on Wednesday, but put in limited practices on Thursday and Friday. He will likely suit up and play against a terrible Saints defense. He is a RB2 with upside for Week 3.


Todd Gurley, RB, St. Louis Rams vs. Pittsburgh Steelers

Questionable – Knee

Coming back from ACL reconstructive surgery, this may be the week fantasy owners get to see Gurley in action. He's put in full practices, but he has yet to the see the field in the NFL. The Rams will likely ease Gurley into game action, putting him on a snap count and not using him in red zone opportunities right away. Gurley, as long as he's healthy and productive, should emerge as the lead back for the Rams, but the team is playing it safe with him. Fantasy owners should continue to stash Gurley, but don't start him this week, even if he's active.


Carlos Hyde, RB, San Francisco 49ers at Arizona Cardinals (Sunday, 4:05 p.m.)

Probable – Quad

After giving fantasy owners a scare in Week 2, Hyde appears good to go for Week 3. He did not have a concussion and the thigh injury was just a bruise. Hyde participated in full practices this week, and is a low RB1 for Week 3.


Lorenzo Taliaferro, RB, Baltimore Ravens vs. Cincinnati Bengals

Questionable – Foot

After acting as a touchdown vulture in Week 2, Taliaferro missed practice this week with a foot injury. He had missed time earlier this year with a knee injury, so this is a new issue. Taliaferro did practice on Friday, but he may not suit up on Sunday. At this point, he is not a fantasy option. If healthy, he has some value as a touchdown vulture, but do not take the chance to start him this week.


Andre Ellington, RB, Arizona Cardinals vs San Francisco 49ers (Sunday, 4:05 p.m.)

Doubtful - Knee

Ellington got in his first practice, a limited session, on Friday, after injuring his PCL in Week 1. The original timeline on the injury was two to three weeks. He should be able to practice this coming week, and assuming he doesn't suffer any setbacks, should play in Week 4. However, expect Week 3 to be more Chris Johnson (RB2) and David Johnson (RB3).


Tevin Coleman, RB, Atlanta Falcons at Dallas Cowboys

Out – Rib

Coleman broke his ribs in Week 2 and has been ruled out for Week 3. Devonta Freeman will be the lead back, but is a RB3 at best. Coleman may end up missing next week as well, depending on how the ribs heal and how he manages the pain.


— Written by Sarah Lewis, who is part of the Athlon Contributor network and lives, eats, and breathes fantasy football. She also writes for among other sites. Have a fantasy football question? Send it to her on Twitter @Sarah_Lewis32.

Week 3 Fantasy Football Injury Updates: DeMarco Murray, Chris Ivory, Jonathan Stewart, Todd Gurley, Carlos Hyde
Post date: Sunday, September 27, 2015 - 06:30
All taxonomy terms: Fantasy Football, injury updates, NFL, Fantasy
Path: /fantasy/week-3-fantasy-football-injury-updates-eric-decker-deandre-hopkins-mike-evans-brandin-cooks-davante-adams

While the list of wide receivers that are injured and may affect your lineup decisions for Sunday is shorter than the RB injuries (list 1, list 2) and the QB/TE injuries, it doesn't mean fantasy owners won't be scouring the waiver wire. Some of the players on this list shouldn't be surprises, but that doesn't make lineup decisions any easier. Let's take a look at the wide receivers on the Week 3 injury report.


Note: if a time isn't indicated, the player is playing at 1 p.m. ET on Sunday.


DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Houston Texans vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Probable – Head

On Wednesday's practice report, Hopkins showed up with a concussion. It isn't clear when the concussion happened, but he does need to go through the league's concussion protocol and be cleared before he can play, but the Probable designation is a good sign. The good news is that this is a 1 p.m. ET kickoff so fantasy owners should know early if they will have their WR1 or not.


Eric Decker, WR New York Jets vs. Philadelphia Eagles

Questionable – Knee

Decker suffered a knee injury in Week 2 and he did not practice at all this past week. Typically when players don't practice, they don't play. Decker has said he isn't going to play until he's 100 percent, and the tea leaves suggest if he couldn't get in a limited practice on Friday, he's not going to be at 100 percent on Sunday. Brandon Marshall gets a boost, and fantasy owners should expect to be without Decker for Week 3. Watch the practice reports to see his status for Week 4.


Mike Evans, WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Houston Texans

Probable – Hamstring

After missing Week 1 and putting up a goose egg for fantasy owners in Week 2, Evans is set to play in Week 3. He's put in full practices this week and reportedly will not be on a snap count. He is a WR1 against a beatable Texans defense. Jameis Winston will soon learn that Evans is the go-to guy on the roster.


Brandin Cooks, WR, New Orleans Saints at Carolina Panthers

Probable – Ankle

While Cooks is battling an ankle injury that kept him out of practice on Wednesday and Thursday, he did put in a full practice on Friday. However, between the ankle injury and the Luke McCown factor, he's a WR3 this week. He had 62 yards in Week 2, which is higher than his 49 yards in Week 1. Until Drew Brees (shoulder) is back, try to find other options for WR if possible.


Davante Adams, WR, Green Bay Packers vs. Kansas City (Monday, 8:30 p.m.)

Questionable - Ankle

Adams tweaked his ankle during Week 2's game, but was able to return to the game. He missed practice on Thursday, but put in a limited session on Friday. He was given the Questionable tag, but it appears that he will play on Monday. It's tough because the Packers don't play until Monday, but owners should feel fairly confident about penciling Adams into their lineups as a WR2.


Alshon Jeffery, Eddie Royal & Marquess Wilson, WRs, Chicago Bears at Seattle Seahawks (Sunday, 4:25 p.m.)

Out – Hamstring, Questionable – Back, Probable – Shoulder

Chicago’s offense is a M.A.S.H. unit right now with quarterback Jay Cutler out because of a hamstring injury and the wide receiver corps hobbling. Jeffery will miss a second straight game because of a hamstring injury, while Royal, who moves up to the No. 1 WR role in Jeffery’s absence, is Questionable with a back injury. Royal should play, same for Wilson, but neither should be counted on this week with Jimmy Clausen at quarterback and a hungry Seahawks defense back at home desperately wanting to get into the win column. If you have no other option, Royal is a WR4 at best this week.


— Written by Sarah Lewis, who is part of the Athlon Contributor network and lives, eats, and breathes fantasy football. She also writes for among other sites. Have a fantasy football question? Send it to her on Twitter @Sarah_Lewis32.

Week 3 Fantasy Football Injury Updates: Eric Decker, DeAndre Hopkins, Mike Evans, Brandin Cooks, Davante Adams
Post date: Sunday, September 27, 2015 - 06:30
All taxonomy terms: Fantasy Football, injury updates, NFL, Fantasy
Path: /fantasy/fantasy-football-week-3-injury-updates-matthew-stafford-jason-witten-delanie-walker-jordan-cameron

By the third week of the season, the fantasy injury report just seems to be getting longer and longer. Long enough in fact, that there's more than enough names to go around each position. Note that these are the fantasy-relevant players that may be truly questionable. Some players appear on the injury report with a probable tag after practicing all week, and they will be active on Sunday. Week 2 was apparently a bloodbath in the NFL, and we're here to analyze the aftermath.


Before sizing up the ailing QBs and TEs below, don't forget to check out the RBs (here and here), as well as the WRs.


Note: if a time isn't indicated, the player is playing at 1 p.m. ET on Sunday.


Matthew Stafford, QB, Detroit Lions vs. Denver Broncos (Sunday, 8:30 p.m.)

Probable - Ribs

Stafford was on the injury report after getting banged up in Week 2. He was slow to get up after taking some brutal hits, but he did put in full practices all week. He should play Sunday night, but the question is how well. The Denver defense has allowed the fewest yards through the air this season. Stafford hasn't been lighting up the stat sheet in his first two matchups (532 total yards, four touchdowns, three interceptions). The matchup and the injuries make him a QB2 this week.


Drew Brees, QB, New Orleans Saints at Carolina Panthers

Out – Shoulder

Brees was ruled out on Friday after he reportedly didn’t have any “zip” on his throws in practice. Luke McCown will fill in, which means all Saints pass catchers can be downgraded. Unfortunately for Brees' owners, the timetable for his return depends on how quickly he can get back to throwing like he is capable of.


Jay Cutler, QB, Chicago Bears at Seattle Seahawks (Sunday, 4:25 p.m.)

Out – Hamstring

Cutler has been ruled out with a hamstring injury he sustained during the game in Week 2. Jimmy Clausen will take the reins in what should be a blowout game in Seattle. Wide receiver Alshon Jeffery (hamstring) also has been ruled out already. Avoid all Bears if possible this week. Cutler may be back in Week 3 depending on how fast the hamstring heals.


Delanie Walker, TE, Tennessee Titans vs. Indianapolis Colts

Probable - Wrist

After missing Week 2 with a wrist injury, Walker is on track to play today. He practiced in full all week, and especially with all of the other injuries at tight end, is a TE1 for Week 3. He did score a touchdown in Week 1 and he has a good shot at finding the end zone again against the Colts.


Jason Witten, TE, Dallas Cowboys vs. Atlanta Falcons

Probable – Ankles/Knee

Even though he’s dealing with two sprained ankles and a sprained knee, the expectation is that Witten will play today. After all this is the same durable guy who played through a lacerated spleen last year and countless other injuries. A couple of sprains isn't going to stop him. However, with Brandon Weeden at the helm, it's hard to trust Witten this week. He's a TE2 in case Weeden uses him to check down, but don't expect too much.


Jordan Cameron, TE, Miami Dolphins vs. Buffalo Bills (Sunday, 4:25 p.m.)

Questionable – Groin

Cameron injured his groin in Week 2, but was able to put in some practice time this week. It appears that he will play on Sunday, based on the practice reports. The Bills were torched by Patriots tight ends in Week 2, but Cameron isn't exactly Rob Gronkowski. However, Cameron is still a low-end TE1 if active. He does play in a late game, so be sure to have a backup, just in case.


Ladarius Green, TE, San Diego Chargers at Minnesota Vikings

Questionable – Head

Green showed up to practice on Tuesday with concussion-like symptoms. He either suffered a concussion in Sunday's game or is still dealing with symptoms from his earlier concussion. Either way, he has to pass through the concussion protocol before being cleared to play. Based on either how close the concussions were or how long the symptoms have lasted, it is a good bet that Green sits out Week 3.


Austin Seferian-Jenkins, TE, Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Houston Texans

Out – Shoulder

Seferian-Jenkins has a strained shoulder and will be out for the next four to six weeks. Brandon Myers is the tight end in Tampa Bay, but is not worth rostering in fantasy leagues.


Dwayne Allen, TE, Indianapolis Colts at Tennessee Titans

Out – Ankle

Allen is dealing with an ankle sprain, and has already been ruled out for Week 3. Fire up Coby Fleener as a TE1 as long as Allen is sidelined. Follow the practice reports this coming week to get an early idea on Allen’s Week 4 status.


Brandon Pettigrew, TE, Detroit Lions vs. Denver Broncos

Out – Hamstring

Pettigrew missed Week 2 and he has been ruled out for Week 3 with a hamstring injury. This bodes well for Eric Ebron owners. It is unclear when Pettigrew will return.


— Written by Sarah Lewis, who is part of the Athlon Contributor network and lives, eats, and breathes fantasy football. She also writes for among other sites. Have a fantasy football question? Send it to her on Twitter @Sarah_Lewis32.

Fantasy Football Week 3 Injury Updates: Matthew Stafford, Jason Witten, Delanie Walker, Jordan Cameron
Post date: Sunday, September 27, 2015 - 06:30
Path: /college-football/knee-jerk-reactions-southern-mississippi-golden-eagles-vs-nebraska-cornhuskers

After a game that featured more starts and stops than a kid driving his first manual transmission, Nebraska came out on top against the Golden Eagles of Southern Mississippi 36-28. Per usual, there are some immediate takeaways from what is the Huskers’ last non-conference game. Let’s review:


- Tommy Armstrong became the second player in school history to reach 1,000 yards passing in just four games also chalking up a career-high 431 yards of total offense.


Plenty of career-highs were chalked up against the Golden Eagles, but Tommy Arm-So-Strong had himself what is becoming a regular efficient day aside from a few hiccups here and there.


- The running game still has room to improve, but lo! It’s the Andy Janovich Show! The H-back tallied 68 yards on the ground and 53 yards receiving. Said Riley of his performance, “I don't know if every game running-wise will work out like that for our fullback, but it certainly was good today." Aw shucks, coach.


- Surely this will shock you. Jordan Westerkamp set a new career-high 11 catches netting Nebraska 118 yards and a score. Brandon Riley also had a day and a half with three snags for 112 yards.


It was a very disappointing day for Cethan Carter who didn’t seem to have his head in the game as he gave a half-hearted effort. His route running and pass catching were tepid at best.


- This offensive line needs a kick in the pants as after four games, the best of the five is redshirt freshman Nick Gates. The others don’t play to the whistle or take plays off including captain Alex Lewis and center Ryan Reeves still suffers from high snaps.


- It stinks having Jack Gangwish on the sideline, but depth is being built with the work of Freedom Akinmoladun. He’s outplaying junior Greg McMullen on the opposite end and when Gangwish is ready to return, I look forward to see if there’s a battle for a Blackshirt.


- Considering what Trent Bray and the Nebraska linebackers have had to deal with this season, I have to say they’ve performed admirably. Groin issues plague this group forcing Chris Weber, Luke Gifford and Marcus Newby to step up.


There’s going to be yards given up. If you were an opposing offensive coordinator, wouldn’t you take advantage? It’s tough to watch, but this group does have its moments despite razor thin depth.


- The changes to the secondary didn’t suddenly hold the Golden Eagles to under 200 yards passing, but there may be a new weak link.


While Jonathan Rose, Chris Jones and Joshua Kalu all work well at the cornerback and nickel roles respectively, safety Byerson Cockrell’s play is becoming a concern quickly.


- How about Drew Brown? Brown tied the NCAA record for most field goals in the first half and set a new career-long of 50 yards besting his 49-yarder versus Miami earlier this season. The kid went five of six on the day and that is why you have a special teams coach.


Unfortunately, there was a botch on an onside kick following a Southern Miss score. However, Riley took responsibility and noted that after the mistake, he and special teams coach Bruce Read made sure that Westerkamp was back to recover a pooch kick later in the game.


Bottom Line: After a rough 2-2 non-conference slate, the Huskers are pretty banged up. However, they may see a very welcome face return to the sideline all padded up next week.  Yeah, No. 15.


— Written by Brandon Cavanaugh, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network. Be sure to follow Brandon on Twitter @eightlaces and Periscope (eightlaces), and like his Facebook page.

Knee-Jerk Reactions: Southern Mississippi Golden Eagles vs. Nebraska Cornhuskers
Post date: Saturday, September 26, 2015 - 19:00
All taxonomy terms: College Football
Path: /college-football/west-virginia-wr-shelton-gibson-pummels-maryland-cheerleader

As a football player, you're used to running over people.


Shelton Gibson took couldn't put on the brakes after scoring a touchdown and ran right into a Maryland cheerleader. Ouch. The West Virginia wide receiver was running too fast and she clearly couldn't move out of the way in time.


Who said cheerleading was easy?


Post date: Saturday, September 26, 2015 - 16:53
All taxonomy terms: High School
Path: /high-school/warren-hills-regional-hs-quarterback-dies-evan-murray-summit

Warren Hills Regional High School quarterback suffered an unimaginable fate after an injury during a Friday night football game.


Evan Murray was injured in a 14-12 loss to Summit High School but, according to, finished the game. It wasn't until after the game that he succumbed to his injuries. The senior quarterback suffered a lacerated spleen with "massive" bleeding that led to his death. Murray's spleen was abnormally enlarged which made it more susceptible to injury.


"We're all very deeply saddened by the passing of Evan Murray," superintendent Gary Bowen said. 



Post date: Saturday, September 26, 2015 - 11:37
All taxonomy terms: College Football
Path: /college-football/best-signs-college-gameday-ucla-arizona-state-josh-rosen-meek-mill-drake-diddy-espn

Saturday morning really brings out the best in everybody.


Some of the best "signage" came out for the UCLA-Arizona game, and it did not disappoint.



Okay Brian Williams... #ruinthebruins #itsgameday #Zonazoo #zonazoocrew

A photo posted by Noah Deitch (@noahdeitch) on



Lots of Diddy out there.



#collegegameday #arizona #beatucla

A photo posted by Caleb (@calebovo) on



Even though the game is against UCLA, Arizona fans can't help but to take some jabs at in-state rival Arizona St.




Elements of Drake and Meek Mill.



#collegegameday #arizonafootball #zonazoo ❤️

A photo posted by Heby Song (@hebyss) on




Last but not least, there's a new lead in the mystery of who killed Tupac. 


Post date: Saturday, September 26, 2015 - 09:41