Articles By Steven Lassan

Path: /college-football/big-12-gets-it-right-no-conference-championship-game-needed
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Whether it was the amount of teams in the league, getting left out of the playoff, a championship game, the nine-game schedule or expansion, the ’s future has been an ongoing debate since the last round of conference realignment.

 

But on Tuesday, the league took a step in the right direction by deciding not to add a conference championship game.

 

At last week’s playoff committee meeting, executive director Bill Hancock reach the four-team playoff in 2014. And following last week’s meetings, who was ready to implement a 13th game to help his league match the other Power 5 conferences.

 

But let’s take a step back and revisit the final week of the season. How often will a team with a No. 3 quarterback destroy a Power 5 team in the conference championship game by 59 points? It’s pretty rare. Florida State won by only two points in the ACC Championship over Georgia Tech. If the Seminoles lost to the Yellow Jackets, Baylor would have been the No. 4 team in the playoff.

 

The was just a couple of points or breaks away from getting one team in the playoff last year. So what’s the rush to change? There should be zero.

 

While the is the only Power 5 league without a conference title game, adding one doesn’t necessarily help this league in the playoff mix. In fact, a 13th game on an annual basis could hurt the Big 12 champion more than it helps.

 

Right now, the has a good setup. The round-robin schedule allows every team to play one another and an additional conference championship game would only add the potential for a loss for the league’s No. 1 team.

 

One look through the history of the Big 12 Championship should give the athletic directors enough of a reason to not add a conference championship game. In 1996, No. 3 Nebraska lost to an unranked Texas team. No. 3 Kansas State was upset by Texas A&M in 1998, No. 3 Texas lost to No. 9 Colorado in 2001, and the most memorable result was No. 1 Oklahoma losing to No. 15 Kansas State 35-7 in 2003.

 

College football is a cyclical sport. Conferences are up in some years, down in others. One season of data on the college football playoff isn’t enough to make enough long-term decisions about a league. If the Big 12 gets left out of the playoff in seven out of the next eight years because it doesn’t have a conference championship game – then it’s time to revisit the issue.

 

The Big 12 could help itself a little by implementing a non-conference rule forcing every team to play a Power 5 opponent outside of league games. That’s an easy way to bolster the strength of schedule metric. And it certainly wouldn’t hurt the overall conference strength if Oklahoma and Texas were back among the nation’s elite once again.

 

Could a Big 12 Championship matchup help the conference? Sure. But it’s a 50-50 shot. The champion isn’t guaranteed to win the game, and there’s as much potential for this game to hurt the No. 1 team.

 

Until there’s clear proof that the Big 12’s playoff hopes are hindered on a yearly basis by not having a conference title game, not adding a 13th contest or expanding is the way go.

 

This doesn’t happened too often, but in this case, the Big 12 got it right by just staying the course.

Teaser:
The Big 12 Gets it Right: No Conference Championship Game is Needed
Post date: Wednesday, May 6, 2015 - 10:00
Path: /college-football/wake-forest-unveils-new-football-uniforms-and-helmets-2015
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Wake Forest’s black and gold uniforms and helmets are getting a new look for the 2015 season. The Demon Deacons unveiled the new look on Tuesday, which features three different jerseys, including the usual black and white designs. And there’s a new black jersey, featuring gold on the sleeves.

 

There’s also some tweaks to the helmet, including a shiny gold design, as well as two different black variations. Here's the full gallery from the .

 

 

The school also released a video to debut the uniforms:

 

Teaser:
Wake Forest Unveils New Football Uniforms and Helmets for 2015
Post date: Tuesday, May 5, 2015 - 13:33
Path: /college-football/ranking-secs-college-football-coaches-2015
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Success with any college football team starts with coaching. Even if a program doesn’t have the resources of the nation’s elite jobs, a good coach can elevate a program into national title contention. However, similar to any position on the field, statistics may not tell the full story when judging a coaching tenure.

 

This is not simply a list of coaches ranked by accomplishment or wins. While those aspects are important, it doesn’t provide a complete picture of how successful coaches are. Winning 10 games at Alabama is different than winning 10 games at Kentucky. Also, every program has a different amount of resources available. Hierarchy in college football also plays a vital role in how successful programs are. It's always easier for programs with more built-in advantages to contend for a national title on a more consistent basis.

 

A couple of other factors to consider when ranking coaches: How well are the assistants paid? A staff with two of the nation’s top coordinators could be a sign the head coach is better as a CEO and may not be as strong in terms of developing gameplans. How is the coach in the X’s and O’s? Can the coach recruit? Are the program’s facilities on par with the rest of the conference? Much like assistants, a program needs good facilities to win big. If a team is winning at a high level with poor facilities and a small budget, it reflects positively on the head coach. Is the coach successful at only one stop? Or has that coach built a solid resume from different jobs?

 

Again, wins are important. But our rankings also take into account a blank slate. If you start a program from scratch, which coach would you hire knowing what they accomplished so far and their career trajectory? Remember, you don't get the assistants - only the head coach. And head-to-head wins do not matter for this ranking.

 

Ranking the ’s Football Coaches for 2015

 

1. Nick Saban,

Record at Alabama: 91-17 (8 years)

Career Record: 182-59-1 (19 years)

 

Maintaining a place among college football’s elite every year is no easy task. However, as long as Alabama has Saban, the Crimson Tide will factor into the Playoff mix and remain among the nation’s top threats to win the national championship every season. In Saban’s eight years in Tuscaloosa, Alabama has won 10 games at least seven times and has not lost more than one game in play in four years. And of course, we can’t forget about the three national championships during the BCS era. Additionally, the Crimson Tide has seven consecutive finishes inside of the top 10 in the final Associated Press poll. Recruiting and developing talent is another strength of the program under Saban, as Alabama has reeled in the No. 1 recruiting class over the last five seasons and 48 players have been drafted since 2009. 

 

Related:

 

2. Gus Malzahn,
Record at Auburn:
20-7 (2 years)
Career Record: 29-10 (3 years)

 

In just three seasons as a head coach, Malzahn has already entrenched his name among the best in the nation. After a 9-3 record at Arkansas State in 2012 (his first as a head coach on the FBS level), Malzahn has guided Auburn to a 20-7 mark over the last two years. The Tigers played for the 2013 national championship and finished No. 2 in the final Associated Press poll after the loss to Florida State. Auburn slipped to 8-5 last year, but Malzahn should have this team back in contention for the title in 2015. Prior to being a head coach on the FBS level, Malzahn was one of the nation’s top offensive coordinators at Auburn and Tulsa, with a one-year stop at Arkansas in 2006. He’s also known for his stint as a high school coach at Springdale High School in Arkansas from 2001-05. Malzahn is one of the game’s top X’s and O’s tacticians on offense and upgraded his defense with the addition of Will Muschamp as his new coordinator.

 

3. Steve Spurrier,

Record at South Carolina: 84-45 (10 years)

Career Record: 226-85-2 (25 years)

 

Spurrier enters 2015 ranked No. 2 among active FBS coaches with 226 career wins. South Carolina slipped in 2014 after three consecutive 11-win seasons, but Spurrier has elevated a program that had only one 10-win campaign prior to his arrival in 2005. Additionally, out of the six times the Gamecocks have won at least nine games, four of those have taken place under Spurrier’s watch. And Spurrier’s track record is no secret, as he went 122-27-1 at Florida from 1990-2001 and 20-13-1 at Duke from 1987-89. It’s not easy for coaches to maintain success over a 20-year span. Spurrier has had to tweak a few things along the way, but as evidenced by his recent success at South Carolina, he’s still one of the game’s top coaches.

 

4. Mark Richt,

Record at Georgia: 136-48 (14 years)

Career Record: 136-48 (14 years)

 

Georgia hasn’t won a title since 2005, but the Bulldogs usually rank near the top of the conference. Richt has guided Georgia to three double-digit win seasons over the last four years, and the Bulldogs finished No. 2 in the final Associated Press poll in 2007. The talent level certainly isn’t an issue for Georgia, as the program owns the No. 3 roster in the SEC over the last five seasons. And with a 7.6 national average, the talent level is in place for the Bulldogs to contend for a national title. Under Richt’s direction, Georgia has never finished lower than third in the East and has lost more than two games in SEC play only five times over the last 14 years.

 

5. Gary Pinkel,

Record at Missouri: 113-66 (14 years)

Career Record: 186-104-3 (24 years)

 

Pinkel has been a consistent winner throughout his tenure at Missouri. The Tigers average 8.1 wins a season under Pinkel and have claimed back-to-back East Division titles after a 5-7 record in their debut. Prior to joining the SEC, Missouri posted seven consecutive winning campaigns from 2005-11, including a 12-2 mark and a No. 4 finish in the final Associated Press poll in 2007. Pinkel’s success isn’t limited to just Missouri, as he went 73-37-3 in 10 years at Toledo. Despite a national recruiting rank of 39th nationally over the last five years, the Tigers won the SEC East in back-to-back years and will begin 2015 as one of the favorites in the division once again. That’s a huge credit to Pinkel and his staff’s ability to find and develop talent every year. 

 

6. Dan Mullen,

Record at Mississippi State: 46-31 (6 years)

Career Record: 46-31 (6 years)

 

Mullen is the perfect example of why job hierarchy within a conference matters when ranking coaches. Mississippi State is the toughest job in the SEC West, and this program’s 27.4 finish nationally over the last five years in recruiting ranks No. 7 within its own division. However, the Bulldogs are 46-31 under Mullen and are coming off just the third double-digit win season in program history. Last season, Mississippi State climbed as high as No. 1 in the Associated Press poll for the first time and finished No. 11 in the final ranking – the second-highest mark in school history. Since a 5-7 mark in Mullen’s debut, Mississippi State has recorded a winning record in five consecutive years and is 22-26 in the . Even though the Bulldogs suffered some heavy personnel losses this offseason, Mullen has elevated this program and the talent level has improved to ensure a quick rebuild.

 

Related:

 

7. Hugh Freeze,

Record at Ole Miss: 24-15 (3 years)

Career Record: 54-22 (6 years)

 

Ole Miss has made steady improvement under Freeze, including a nine-win campaign in 2014. The Rebels have made a bowl game in all three of Freeze’s seasons in Oxford and went as high as No. 3 in the Associated Press poll in 2014. And if injuries didn’t take a toll on the 2014 team, Ole Miss easily could have won 10 games for the first time since '03. While Freeze doesn’t have the track record of some of the coaches in this league, he’s already a proven winner at three different jobs. In addition to the 24 wins at Ole Miss, he went 20-5 at Lambuth from 2008-09 and 10-2 at Arkansas State in '11. As we mentioned in the introduction, it’s not a list of career accomplishments. Based upon what Freeze inherited and has done in three years at Ole Miss, his career trajectory is higher than several names on this list.

 

8. Les Miles,

Record at LSU: 103-29 (10 years)

Career Record: 131-50 (14 years)

 

2015 is shaping up to be one of the most interesting years of Miles’ tenure at LSU. The Tigers have slipped in the SEC pecking order over the last three seasons and last year finished outside of the Associated Press top 25 poll for the first time since 2008. LSU’s 4-4 mark in SEC play in 2014 was the first non-winning record in conference games in six seasons. Additionally, Miles lost top assistant and defensive coordinator John Chavis to rival Texas A&M, and the offense ranked 13th in the SEC in scoring last year. Plenty of question marks surround LSU for 2015, but Miles has showed before he’s capable of getting the program back among the best in the SEC. The Tigers went 17-9 from 2008-09, yet rebounded with four consecutive seasons of at least 10 wins from 2010-13. LSU has averaged a 6.8 finish nationally in recruiting rankings over the last five years. With that type of talent in place, the Tigers have the necessary pieces in place to get back to the top of the SEC.

 

9. Butch Jones,

Record at Tennessee: 12-13 (2 years)

Career Record: 62-40 (8 years)

 

The arrow on Tennessee’s program under Jones' leadership is clearly pointing up entering 2015. The Volunteers went 5-7 in Jones’ first season but improved to 7-6 and returned to a bowl for the first time since 2010. Upgrading the talent on Tennessee’s roster has been a priority for Jones, and the coaching staff has inked back-to-back top-10 signing classes. With the talent on the rise, a solid core of personnel in place, and a team that won four out of its final five games, Tennessee is poised to take another step forward in 2015. Prior to Tennessee, Jones guided Central Michigan to a 27-13 record in three years (2007-09) and led Cincinnati to a 23-14 mark from 2010-12.

 

Related:

 

10. Kevin Sumlin,

Record at Texas A&M: 28-11 (3 years)

Career Record: 63-28 (7 years)

 

Texas A&M has made a successful transition to the SEC under Sumlin’s watch. In addition to fielding an explosive offense, the Aggies are 28-11 over the last three years and have a 13-11 record in SEC play in that span. With the program entrenched in the nation’s toughest conference, along with facility upgrades to compete with the SEC’s elite, Sumlin will be looking to push Texas A&M even higher in the conference standings. The Aggies’ win total in SEC games has declined from six (2012) to four (2013) to three (2014). While the offense has been among the league’s best since 2012, the defense has struggled mightily. But Sumlin took a big step in fixing that side of the ball by hiring John Chavis away from LSU. Prior to the last three seasons at Texas A&M, Sumlin guided Houston to a 35-17 record in four years from 2008-11. 

 

11. Bret Bielema,

Record at Arkansas: 10-15 (2 years)

Career Record: 78-39 (9 years)

 

The overall coaching depth in the SEC is on display when Bielema ranks as the No. 11 coach on this list. Arkansas has showed marked improvement under Bielema in the last two years, and the Razorbacks are poised to take another step forward in 2015. After a 3-9 mark and a winless record in SEC play in 2013, Arkansas finished 7-6 and lost four games by a touchdown or less last fall. The Razorbacks closed 2014 by winning four out of their final six games, including a 31-7 destruction of Texas in the Texas Bowl. Prior to Arkansas, Bielema went 68-24 at Wisconsin and led the Badgers to four seasons of double-digit wins. The Razorbacks are clearly headed in the right direction, and Bielema’s physical style of play fits right at home in the SEC.

 

Related:

 

12. Jim McElwain,

Record at Florida: First Year

Career Record: 22-16 (3 years)

 

After three seasons at Colorado State, McElwain was tapped as the replacement for Will Muschamp at Florida. Although Muschamp guided the Gators to an 11-2 mark in 2012, this program underachieved over the last four years with a 29-21 record. McElwain seems like the right coach to get the program back on track after a 22-16 record with the Rams, as well as a previous stint as an offensive coordinator under Nick Saban at Alabama from 2008-11. Colorado State improved its win total in each of McElwain’s three years, including a 10-win mark in 2014. Prior to calling the plays at Alabama, McElwain made stops as an assistant at Fresno State, Michigan State, Louisville and in the NFL with the Raiders. His offensive background will pay dividends for a program that has struggled mightily on that side of the ball in recent years.

 

13. Mark Stoops,

Record at Kentucky: 7-17 (2 years)

Career Record: 7-17 (2 years)

 

Kentucky is making progress under Stoops, making the jump from two wins in 2013 to five in '14. The Wildcats also went 2-6 in SEC play last year, equaling the amount of conference victories recorded from 2012-13. Kentucky was close to bowl eligibility in 2014, losing to Florida by six in three overtimes and by four to Louisville in the regular-season finale. The overall talent level and direction of this program have each improved since Stoops took over after the 2012 season. The next challenge is getting Kentucky to the postseason. With 12 starters back, that could happen this fall.

 

14. Derek Mason,
Record at Vanderbilt:
3-9 (1 year)
Career Record: 3-9 (1 year)

 

James Franklin left big shoes to fill in Nashville after leading the Commodores to three consecutive bowl appearances. While repeating that success in the first year was going to be tough for Mason, Vanderbilt slipped to 3-9 and went winless in SEC play for the first time since 2009. The Commodores also lost four conference games by 20 or more points, and two of their three wins came by less than three points. Mason plans on taking over the defensive play-calling duties in 2015 and a staff overhaul should help the offense improve after averaging only 12.8 points per game in SEC contests. Mason had plenty of success as a coordinator at Stanford. Will the Commodores show big improvement in year two?

Teaser:
Ranking the SEC's College Football Coaches for 2015
Post date: Tuesday, May 5, 2015 - 11:00
Path: /college-football/ranking-accs-college-football-coaches-2015
Body:

Success with any college football team starts with coaching. Even if a program doesn’t have the resources of the nation’s elite jobs, a good coach can elevate a program into national title contention. However, similar to any position on the field, statistics may not tell the full story when judging a coaching tenure.

 

This is not simply a list of coaches ranked by accomplishment or wins. While those aspects are important, it doesn’t provide a complete picture of how successful coaches are. Winning 10 games at Alabama is different than winning 10 games at Kentucky. Also, every program has a different amount of resources available. Hierarchy in college football also plays a vital role in how successful programs are. It's always easier for programs with more built-in advantages to contend for a national title on a more consistent basis.

 

A couple of other factors to consider when ranking coaches: How well are the assistants paid? A staff with two of the nation’s top coordinators could be a sign the head coach is better as a CEO and may not be as strong in terms of developing gameplans. How is the coach in the X’s and O’s? Can the coach recruit? Are the program’s facilities on par with the rest of the conference? Much like assistants, a program needs good facilities to win big. If a team is winning at a high level with poor facilities and a small budget, it reflects positively on the head coach. Is the coach successful at only one stop? Or has that coach built a solid resume from different jobs?

 

Again, wins are important. But our rankings also take into account a blank slate. If you start a program from scratch, which coach would you hire knowing what they accomplished so far and their career trajectory? Remember, you don't get the assistants - only the head coach. And head-to-head wins do not matter for this ranking.

 

Ranking the ACC’s Football Coaches for 2015

 

1. Jimbo Fisher, Florida State
Record at Florida State:
58-11 (5 years)

Career Record: 58-11 (5 years)

 

Fisher has returned Florida State to the nation’s elite, guiding the Seminoles to a 27-1 mark over the last two seasons and the 2013 national championship. Under Fisher’s watch, Florida State has averaged 11.6 wins a season and has three consecutive finishes in the final Associated Press poll. Replacing Jameis Winston won’t be easy, but Fisher is one of the nation’s best at talent evaluation, and the Seminoles will continue to win at a high level under his watch.  

 

Related:

 

2. Bobby Petrino, Louisville

Record at Louisville: 50-13 (5 years)

Career Record: 92-34 (10 years)

 

Petrino’s return to Louisville was a success, as the Cardinals finished 9-4 in their first season in the . And Petrino’s team was neck-and-neck with the top teams in the conference, losing by just six points to Clemson and was defeated by Florida State after leading the defending national champs going into the fourth quarter. In Petrino’s 10 years as a college head coach, he’s won at least eight games every season but one. The Cardinals have some key pieces to replace for 2015, but the program is in good shape for the long haul with Petrino in control.

 

3. David Cutcliffe, Duke

Record at Duke: 40-48 (7 years)

Career Record: 84-77 (13 years)

 

Cutcliffe has elevated Duke into an annual bowl team in the , and after winning the Coastal Division title in 2014, the Blue Devils finished second last season. How big of a difference has Cutcliffe made with Duke since 2008? The 10-win 2013 campaign, and the 19 victories in a two-year span are the best marks in school history. Cutcliffe is regarded for his work with offenses and quarterbacks, but he deserves more credit for his work as a head coach, especially at a program like Duke where it’s not easy to maintain success.  

 

4. Paul Johnson, Georgia Tech

Record at Georgia Tech: 58-35 (7 years)

Career Record: 165-74 (18 years)

 

2014 wasn’t necessarily a make-or-break year for Johnson at Georgia Tech, but it was fair to wonder where the program was headed after a 14-13 mark from 2012-13. The Yellow Jackets entered 2014 with low expectations and delivered with a surprising 11-3 season and a Coastal Division title. In Johnson’s seven seasons in Atlanta, Georgia Tech has never finished under .500 in conference play. Additionally, the Yellow Jackets have played for the Championship three times. 

 

5. Frank Beamer, Virginia Tech

Record at Virginia Tech: 231-115-2 (28 years)

Career Record: 273-138-4 (34 years)

 

Beamer is college football’s longest-tenured coach entering the 2015 season. Virginia Tech has won 231 games under Beamer’s watch, which includes a streak of eight consecutive seasons of at least 10 wins from 2004-11. While Beamer’s longevity deserves plenty of consideration here, it’s also worth noting Virginia Tech is just 22-17 over the last three seasons and has not finished in the final Associated Press poll in that span after recording 12 top-25 finishes in 13 years from 1998-2011. The Hokies tied for second in the Coastal Division in 2013 but slipped to fourth in 2012 and fifth in 2014. Can Beamer return this program back to the top of the Coastal in 2015? 

 

6. Dabo Swinney, Clemson

Record at Clemson: 61-26 (7 years)

Career Record: 61-26 (7 years)

 

Swinney has helped Clemson football reach its potential with four consecutive seasons of at least 10 victories. The Tigers have not lost more than two games in ACC play during that span and finished No. 8 in the final Associated Press poll in 2013. Swinney is also regarded for his work on the recruiting trail, as – among all 128 teams over the last five seasons. It’s no secret the Tigers invested heavily in their coordinators – Chad Morris (now at SMU) and defensive play-caller Brent Venables – to allow Swinney to focus on being the program CEO. What type of impact will Morris leaving have on the offense? That’s the big question facing Clemson in 2015 and beyond.

 

Related:

 

7. Steve Addazio, Boston College

Record at Boston College: 14-12 (2 years)

Career Record: 27-23 (4 years)

 

Even though he’s won only 14 games in two seasons at Boston College, Addazio is off to an impressive start with the Eagles. In the two years prior to Addazio’s tenure, Boston College went 6-18 and missed out on a bowl appearance in both seasons. But Addazio has made the Eagles a tough out in the ACC once again, and the program is coming off back-to-back bowl appearances. Addazio’s tenure is even more impressive when you consider he was able to mesh his systems with the returning talent in 2013, as well as recruit a graduate transfer (Tyler Murphy) at quarterback with a slightly different approach on offense. With only nine returning starters, Addazio has a tough assignment just getting Boston College back to a bowl in 2015. However, the track record suggests the Eagles will be pushing for a winning record once again. 

 

8. Al Golden, Miami

Record at Miami: 28-22 (4 years)

Career Record: 55-56 (9 years)

 

2015 is a critical season for Golden at Miami. The Hurricanes are just 16-16 in four years of ACC play under Golden and 28-22 overall. For a program that has the ability to recruit at a top 10-15 level, a .500 mark in conference games is a troubling sign. Golden did inherit some obstacles when he took over the program, including the Nevin Shapiro scandal and NCAA investigation, which was a cloud hanging over the program for over two years. Prior to taking over at Miami, Golden went 27-34 at Temple, which included a 17-8 record over the final two years (2009-10). With one of the ACC’s top quarterbacks in Brad Kaaya, Miami has the potential to challenge for the Coastal Division title. But potential has been the key word surrounding this program for a few years. It’s time for Golden to deliver.  

 

9. Dave Doeren, NC State

Record at NC State: 11-14 (2 years)

Career Record: 34-18 (4 years)

 

If NC State picks up in 2015 where it left off last season, it’s a safe bet Doeren will rank higher on this list next year. The Wolfpack showed marked improvement in Doeren’s second season, going from a 3-9 and winless team in the ACC in 2013 to an 8-5 squad in 2014. NC State also finished 3-5 in ACC games and won four out of its final five games, including a 35-7 rout over rival North Carolina. Prior to NC State, Doeren went 23-4 at Northern Illinois and guided the Huskies to an appearance in the Orange Bowl in the 2012 season. Recruiting at NC State is on the rise too, as the Wolfpack have signed back-to-back top-35 classes after not finishing higher than 54th from 2011-13.

 

10. Larry Fedora, North Carolina

Record at North Carolina: 21-17 (3 years)

Career Record: 55-36 (7 years)

 

The ongoing NCAA investigation/uncertainty at North Carolina certainly isn’t helping Fedora’s tenure in Chapel Hill. However, the Tar Heels have regressed in wins since posting an 8-4 record in 2012. North Carolina finished 7-6 in 2013 and slipped to 6-7 in 2014. Aside from the regression in the win column, the biggest concern for Fedora has to be fixing a defense that ranked 14th in the ACC in yards per play allowed. The hire of Gene Chizik as the team’s coordinator should address that side of the ball, and North Carolina has one of the league’s most talented offenses in place. Could 2015 be the best year of Fedora’s tenure with the Tar Heels?

 

11. Dave Clawson, Wake Forest

Record at Wake Forest: 3-9 (1 year)

Career Record: 93-88 (15 years)

 

Prior to taking over at Wake Forest, Clawson was a successful head coach at three previous stops. From 1999-2003, Clawson went 29-29 at Fordham, with 19 of those victories coming in the final two seasons. After five years with the Rams, Clawson went 29-20 with two FCS playoff appearances at Richmond, followed by a 32-30 mark at Bowling Green from 2009-13. Clawson didn’t inherit a loaded roster and finished 3-9 with just one of those wins coming in conference play. However, Clawson seems to have Wake Forest moving in the right direction with a talented, young core in place for 2015 and '16.  

 

12. Pat Narduzzi, Pittsburgh

Record at Pittsburgh: First Season

Career Record: First Season

 

If we are buying stock in coaches for 2016 and beyond, Narduzzi is on the must-have list. The former Michigan State coordinator is ready to be a head coach after leading one of the nation’s top defenses from 2007-14. The Spartans ranked in the top five nationally for fewest yards per play and points allowed per game from 2011-13. Narduzzi’s defense was a big reason why Michigan State won at least 11 games in four out of the last five years. Pittsburgh is on its fourth coach in six seasons. However, Narduzzi seems like the right coach at the right time for the Panthers. 

 

Related:

 

13. Mike London, Virginia

Record at Virginia: 23-38 (5 years)

Career Record: 47-43 (7 years)

 

London entered 2014 on the hot seat but managed to earn another season in Charlottesville after the Cavaliers finished 5-7 and lost five games by eight points or less. London enters 2015 in the same situation, as his contact expires at the end of 2016 and there’s pressure to get Virginia back into a bowl game after three consecutive losing seasons. Recruiting has been a strength for London and his staff, with the Cavaliers averaging a 31.8 finish nationally since 2011. The 31.8 mark ranks No. 6 among teams, ahead of three other Coastal Division teams in Pittsburgh, Georgia Tech and Duke. But despite the success on the recruiting trail, Virginia has won only five games in ACC play over the last three seasons. 2015 is a make-or-break year for London.

 

14. Scott Shafer, Syracuse

Record at Syracuse: 10-15 (2 years)

Career Record: 10-15 (2 years)

 

Shafer went 7-6 in his first season at Syracuse (2013), but the Orange regressed to 3-9 last season. The four-win decline had a lot to do with injuries to key players, including quarterback Terrel Hunt. Improving the offense has to be a priority for Shafer and coordinator Tim Lester, especially since the Orange managed only 24 points in their final three games. Prior to Shafer’s promotion to head coach, he worked as a defensive coordinator with the Orange from 2009-12. Additionally, he made stops as an assistant at Michigan, Stanford, Western Michigan, Illinois and Northern Illinois. Syracuse seemed to be trending in the right direction after 2013. But after a three-win campaign last year, can Shafer get the program back into contention for a bowl? With a new athletic director coming, the pressure is on Shafer to produce.

Teaser:
Ranking the ACC's College Football Coaches for 2015
Post date: Monday, May 4, 2015 - 11:00
Path: /college-football/colorado-updates-uniforms-and-unveils-new-gray-alternates-2015
Body:

Colorado’s classic white and black jerseys are some of the best in the Pac-12. But every uniform needs an occasional refresh, and that’s exactly what the Buffaloes are doing headed into 2015.

 

On Friday, Colorado updated its white and black uniforms, along with a brand new gray jersey.

 

Overall, these are really sharp uniforms for the Buffaloes:

 

 

Teaser:
Colorado Updates Uniforms and Unveils New Silver Alternates for 2015
Post date: Friday, May 1, 2015 - 19:29
All taxonomy terms: College Football, Oregon Ducks, Pac 12, News
Path: /college-football/oregon-releases-new-salute-state-uniforms-2015-spring-game
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Oregon is set to close spring practice with its final scrimmage of the season on Saturday.

 

It’s a big spring in Eugene, as the Ducks are looking for a replacement for Marcus Mariota, as well as searching for new starters on defense.

 

Different uniforms and designs are nothing new for Oregon, so it’s no surprise the Ducks have unveiled new “Salute the State” jerseys and helmets for Saturday’s game.

 

Check out the Oregon spring game uniforms for 2015:

Teaser:
Oregon Releases New "Salute the Day" Uniforms for 2015 Spring Game
Post date: Friday, May 1, 2015 - 11:57
All taxonomy terms: 49ers, San Francisco 49ers, NFL, News
Path: /nfl/san-francisco-49ers-unveil-new-alternate-black-uniforms-2015
Body:

It’s hard to beat the traditional scarlet and gold uniforms that the San Francisco 49ers have each season.

 

But there’s a new look coming to the team in 2015. The 49ers unveiled a new black alternate jersey on the first day of the 2015 NFL Draft. The team also unveiled matching pants to give San Francisco all black uniforms.

 

This isn’t an awful look, but why mess with San Francisco’s traditional uniforms? 

Teaser:
San Francisco 49ers Unveil New Alternate Black Uniforms for 2015
Post date: Friday, May 1, 2015 - 11:07
Path: /college-football/ranking-big-12s-quarterbacks-2015
Body:

The is known for its high-scoring offenses and quarterback play, but the league enters 2015 with several unknowns under center. TCU’s Trevone Boykin is the clear favorite for first-team all-conference honors and one of the frontrunners for the Heisman Trophy. However, after Boykin is a host of unproven names. Oklahoma State’s Mason Rudolph ranks as our No. 2 quarterback after a promising finish to 2014, while we project Baylor’s Seth Russell to continue the successful run of signal-callers in Waco.

 

To help compile the rankings, there was some projection involved for 2015. This was not a ranking of quarterbacks only based on accomplishments so far or pro potential. All factors - pure talent, supporting cast, 2015 projection and scheme changes (just to name a few) - were considered and projected to rank the quarterbacks in the for 2015.

 

Ranking the Big 12 Quarterbacks for 2015

 

1. Trevone Boykin, TCU

2015 Year of Eligibility: Senior

 

Under new co-coordinators Sonny Cumbie and Doug Meacham, Boykin emerged as the Big 12’s top quarterback and one of the most improved players in the nation. TCU’s offense averaged 46.5 points per game last year, which was a significant bump from the 25.1 mark in 2013. Boykin threw for 3,901 yards and 33 scores last season and ranked second on the team with 707 yards and eight touchdowns. The senior is among the nation’s leaders for the 2015 Heisman Trophy.

 

2. Mason Rudolph, Oklahoma State

2015 Year of Eligibility: Sophomore

 

Rudolph’s emergence at the end of 2014 is a big reason why Oklahoma State is poised to move up the Big 12 standings in 2015. The true freshman did not play through the first 10 games but started the final three contests and guided the Cowboys to a 2-1 mark in that span. Rudolph ended the year with 853 yards and six scores, while completing 57 percent of his passes. With an improving offensive line and one of the Big 12’s top receiving corps, Rudolph should push for all-conference honors in 2015.

 

3. Seth Russell, Baylor

2015 Year of Eligibility: Junior

 

Russell takes the reins of Baylor’s high-powered offense after Bryce Petty expired his eligibility. Since 2010, the starting quarterback for coach Art Briles has passed for at least 3,500 yards in each season. Additionally, in three out of the last five years, the starter has eclipsed the 4,000-yard mark. Russell threw for 804 yards and eight scores in limited action last year, which included one start against Northwestern State while Petty was out due to a back injury.

 

4. Patrick Mahomes, Texas Tech

2015 Year of Eligibility: Sophomore

 

Putting Mahomes at No. 4 assumes he beats out Davis Webb for the job and starts all 12 regular season games. As a true freshman last year, Mahomes threw for 1,457 yards and 16 scores, with a bulk of his production coming in the final three games. Mahomes also brings a different element to the offense with his dual-threat potential. He only managed 104 yards on 46 attempts last season, but the rushing ability only adds to what should be a dynamic Texas Tech offense in 2015.

 

5. Baker Mayfield, Oklahoma

2015 Year of Eligibility: Junior

 

Oklahoma finished spring without a definitive answer under center, but all signs point to Mayfield taking the first snap of the 2015 season. Mayfield sat out last season due to NCAA transfer rules after leaving Texas Tech following the 2013 campaign. In Mayfield’s only season with the Red Raiders, he threw for 2,315 yards and 12 touchdowns and rushed for 186 yards and three scores. In Oklahoma’s spring game, Mayfield led all quarterbacks with 176 passing yards.

 

6. Skyler Howard, West Virginia

2015 Year of Eligibility: Junior

 

Howard entered spring neck-and-neck with William Crest for the No. 1 spot under center. However, Howard pull ahead throughout the offseason workouts, which may allow the West Virginia coaches to use Crest in an all-purpose role in 2015. Howard gained valuable experienced at the end of 2014 by starting the final two games and threw for 346 yards and three scores against Texas A&M in the Liberty Bowl. The junior college recruit was slated to redshirt last season but injuries to Crest and Clint Trickett forced him to play. Considering the track record of quarterbacks in Dana Holgorsen’s offense, it’s safe to assume Howard will post big numbers if he picks up where he left off in the bowl game and the Mountaineers find a replacement for star receiver Kevin White.

 

7. Tyrone Swoopes/Jerrod Heard, Texas

 

There’s a ton of potential with Texas’ quarterback situation in 2015. But will the Longhorns get consistent production from their signal-callers? Tyrone Swoopes and Jerrod Heard were both four-star recruits in the 247Sports Composite and finished spring in a tight battle for the No. 1 spot. Last year, Swoopes completed 224 of 384 passes for 2,409 yards and 13 scores. He also rushed for 262 yards and four touchdowns. Heard did not play as a redshirt, but he finished the spring on a high note by completing 20 of 29 passes for 177 yards in the spring game. The upside is there for both quarterbacks to take a step forward in 2015, especially with the offense shifting to more of a spread approach. 

 

8. Sam Richardson, Iowa State

2015 Year of Eligibility: Senior

 

Richardson was steady in his second full year as Iowa State’s starter, completing 254 of 451 passes for 2,669 yards and 18 scores. He missed the matchup against Kansas due to injury, but in Big 12 contests last year, the Florida native averaged 239 passing yards per game. The Cyclones should be better on offense in 2015, especially with a talented receiving corps in place, featuring the return of Quenton Bundrage from injury, along with the development of sophomore receiver Allen Lazard. Richardson should also benefit from another offseason to learn under coordinator Mark Mangino. With the returning talent at receiver, No. 8 might be too low for Richardson.

 

9. Joe Hubener, Kansas State

2015 Year of Eligibility: Junior

 

Hubener is the favorite to replace the underrated Jake Waters under center for K-State in 2015. The Kansas native has an interesting backstory, as he joined the program as a walk-on after never starting a game at quarterback in high school. In two seasons of playing time with the Wildcats, Hubener has completed 9 of 17 passes for 235 yards and one touchdown. He has rushed for 147 yards and three scores on 29 rushing attempts. Competing with Hubener for the starting job is sophomore Jesse Ertz and incoming freshman Alex Delton.

 

10. Michael Cummings/Montell Cozart, Kansas

 

Cummings is penciled in as the starter in Lawrence, but a knee injury in the spring game has clouded his availability for 2015. If Cummings returns in time, he should be the starter after completing 137 of 244 passes for 1,715 yards and nine scores last year. But if Cummings is sidelined for the full season, Cozart is the likely replacement. He threw for 701 yards and five scores and started five games in 2014. If the Jayhawks look to the future, true freshmen Ryan Willis or Carter Stanley could get a chance to play.

Teaser:
Ranking the Big 12's Quarterbacks for 2015
Post date: Friday, May 1, 2015 - 11:00
Path: /college-football/ranking-big-tens-quarterbacks-2015
Body:

It’s no secret Ohio State’s quarterback battle is the most intriguing storyline in college football this year. Cardale Jones, Braxton Miller and J.T. Barrett will compete this fall to take the first snap against Virginia Tech, and the winner of the competition – assuming they start the full year – should be a Heisman candidate.

 

Michigan State’s Connor Cook ranks No. 2 in the Big Ten quarterback, and the steady senior is poised to keep the Spartans in the hunt for 10 wins. After Cook, there’s a group of intriguing quarterbacks, starting with Penn State’s Christian Hackenberg. The junior hopes to rebound after a sluggish 2014 season.

 

To help compile the rankings, there was some projection involved for 2015. This was not a ranking of quarterbacks only based on accomplishments so far or pro potential. All factors - pure talent, supporting cast, 2015 projection and scheme changes (just to name a few) - were considered and projected to rank the quarterbacks in the Big Ten for 2015. 

 

Ranking the Big Ten Quarterbacks for 2015

 

1. Cardale Jones/Braxton Miller/J.T. Barrett, Ohio State

 

The Buckeyes have three proven and talented quarterbacks competing for the top spot this offseason. We listed all three names here, but the early favorite to take the first snap of the season has to be Cardale Jones. With Braxton Miller and J.T. Barrett recovering from injuries, Jones has been the top quarterback in the spring and played well in Ohio State’s final three games last year. If Jones starts the full season, he should be one of the nation’s top quarterbacks and a Heisman contender.

 

2. Connor Cook, Michigan State

2015 Year of Eligibility: Senior

 

Michigan State is 23-3 with Cook entrenched as the starting quarterback, and the senior should keep the Spartans among the nation’s top 10 teams in 2015. In two years as the starter, Cook passed for 46 touchdowns to just 14 interceptions and 5,969 yards. Cook isn’t going to post monster statistical totals in Michigan State’s offense, but he rarely makes mistakes and has earned back-to-back second-team Big Ten honors.

 

3. Christian Hackenberg, Penn State

2015 Year of Eligibility: Junior

 

2014 was a struggle for Penn State’s offense. With a rebuilding offensive line, the passing and rushing attacks for the Nittany Lions were never able to get on track. The overall depth and talent is better up front for Penn State in 2015, which should allow the offense to take a step forward in coach James Franklin’s second season. Hackenberg’s passing totals regressed from throwing 2,955 yards and 20 scores in 2013 to 12 touchdowns and 15 interceptions in 2014. Talent isn’t an issue for Hackenberg, but he needs more help from the offensive line.

 

4. Wes Lunt, Illinois

2015 Year of Eligibility: Junior

 

It’s a tossup among quarterbacks No. 4-7 on this list. Lunt is arguably the most talented passer out of that bunch, but he has yet to put everything together for a full season of production. However, that could change in 2015. Lunt’s 2014 season was limited by a leg injury, and he finished the year with 1,763 yards and 14 passing scores. The Fighting Illini offense will miss Mike Dudek’s playmaking ability at receiver while he recovers from a torn ACL. However, the cupboard at receiver isn’t bare for Lunt. Geronimo Allison (14.59 ypc in 2014), Justin Hardee and Malik Turner provide three capable options in the passing game.

 

5. Tommy Armstrong, Nebraska

2015 Year of Eligibility: Junior

 

It wouldn’t be a surprise to see Armstrong move up this list by the end of November. Of course, that’s assuming the junior has an easy transition to a new offense. New coach Mike Riley is changing up Nebraska’s offense to more of a pro-style attack, and Armstrong has to progress as a passer this season. In 13 games last year, Armstrong passed for 2,695 yards and 22 scores. He also added 705 yards and six scores on the ground. With Jordan Westerkamp, Jamal Turner and De’Mornay Pierson-El returning at receiver, everything is in place for Armstrong to succeed in 2015.

 

6. Nate Sudfeld, Indiana

2015 Year of Eligibility: Senior

 

Sudfeld’s 2014 season was cut short by a shoulder injury suffered against Iowa. Prior to his injury, Sudfeld was still trying to adapt to a new group of receivers and threw for 1,151 yards and six scores through six appearances. But rewind back to 2013 and it’s easy to see Sudfeld’s potential in Kevin Wilson’s offense. In 12 appearances (with eight starts), Sudfeld threw for 2,523 yards, 21 scores and completed 60.2 percent of his throws. Assuming he’s healthy, Sudfeld will have Indiana in contention for a bowl this season.

 

7. Jake Rudock, Michigan

2015 Year of Eligibility: Senior

 

After a two-year stint as Iowa’s starting quarterback, Rudock transferred to Michigan for his final year of eligibility. C.J. Beathard was expected to replace Rudock as the starter with Iowa this season, so getting a chance to learn under Jim Harbaugh and remain in the Big Ten is a good move for the senior quarterback. Rudock was productive from 2013-14 with the Hawkeyes, throwing for 4,819 yards and 34 touchdowns to interceptions. How quickly will he mesh with the supporting cast at Michigan? Harbaugh is one of the Big Ten’s top offensive coaches, and Rudock should have a solid year in 2015.

 

8. Mitch Leidner, Minnesota

2015 Year of Eligibility: Junior

 

In his first full season as Minnesota’s starter, Leidner led the Golden Gophers to an 8-5 record and a 5-3 mark in Big Ten play. The Minnesota native passed for 1,798 yards and 11 scores and rushed for 452 yards and 10 touchdowns last year. While Leidner’s debut was solid, there are plenty of areas for him to work on in 2015. Leidner has to become a better passer after completing just 51.5 percent of his throws last year. The struggles in the passing game aren’t solely on Leidner’s right arm, as Minnesota has to develop more playmakers at receiver. That task is even more critical with the departure of tight end Maxx Williams to the NFL.

 

9. Joel Stave, Wisconsin

2015 Year of Eligibility: Senior

 

Stave has been a steady presence for Wisconsin over the last three seasons. The Wisconsin native has passed for 4,948 yards and 37 scores since 2012. New coach Paul Chryst is tasked with improving the Badgers’ passing attack after averaging only 148.7 yards in 14 games last season. Considering the punishing rushing attacks Wisconsin has generated recently, a prolific passing game isn’t needed. However, Stave has to elevate his performance if the Badgers want to challenge Ohio State and Michigan State for a spot at the top of the Big Ten in 2015.

 

10. C.J. Beathard, Iowa

2015 Year of Eligibility: Junior

 

Jake Rudock was a solid starter for Iowa, but Kirk Ferentz and coordinator Greg Davis hope Beathard brings more big-play ability to the offense. In nine appearances last year, Beathard passed for 645 yards and five scores and completed 52 of 92 throws. It’s a small sample size to draw conclusions from, but it’s interesting to note Beathard completed three passes of 40 yards or more last year. Rudock had just eight with more playing time. With a strong arm and good mobility, Beathard could provide a spark for an Iowa offense that produced only 12 plays of 40 yards or more last season and ranked seventh in the Big Ten in scoring.

 

11. Caleb Rowe, Maryland

2015 Year of Eligibility: Junior

 

An offensive makeover is underway at Maryland this offseason. Quarterback C.J. Brown expired his eligibility, the receiving corps lost key targets Stefon Diggs and Deon Long, and the offensive line could have two promising freshmen start at the tackle positions. Rowe did not participate in spring practice while recovering from a torn ACL, but he is the favorite to replace Brown under center in 2015. The South Carolina native is a better pocket passer than Brown and is 123 of 229 for 1,768 yards and 12 scores over the last three years.

 

12. Zack Oliver/Matt Alviti/Clayton Thorson, Northwestern

 

It’s a wide-open battle to replace Trevor Siemian at Northwestern. Oliver, Alviti and Thorson finished spring with little separation, meaning the quarterback competition will extend into the fall. Thorson has the most upside, but Oliver and Alviti have the edge in experience. Oliver started the finale against Illinois last year and threw for 221 yards on 23 completions.

 

13. Chris Laviano, Rutgers

2015 Year of Eligibility: Sophomore

 

Laviano edged slightly ahead of LSU transfer Hayden Rettig for the starting quarterback job at the conclusion of spring practice. In Rutgers’ spring game, Laviano completed 8 of 10 passes for 140 yards and two touchdowns, while Rettig went 4 of 7 for 37 yards. Laviano also played in five games as Gary Nova’s backup last season, completing 11 of 28 passes for 107 yards. There’s some upside with Laviano, especially with top receiver Leonte Carroo returning for his senior year and an underrated stable of running backs. But will there be a transition period with Ben McDaniels taking over for Ralph Friedgen as the team’s play-caller?

 

14. Austin Appleby, Purdue

2015 Year of Eligibility: Junior

 

Appleby and Chris Laviano easily could be flipped on this list. However, for now, the edge goes to Appleby at No. 13. The Ohio native started the final six games of 2014 and passed for 1,449 yards and 10 scores, while adding 198 yards and five touchdowns on the ground. Appleby isn’t secure in the starting job, as Danny Etling and David Blough will push for time once again in the fall.

Teaser:
Ranking the Big Ten's Quarterbacks for 2015
Post date: Thursday, April 30, 2015 - 11:00
Path: /college-football/uconn-revamps-uniforms-and-helmets-2015
Body:

UConn is making a few alterations to its uniform and helmet after just two years of a new design.

 

On Wednesday night, the Huskies unveiled their new look for coach Bob Diaco’s second year.

 

Overall, this is a good design for UConn. And the helmet with the updated logo is a solid look.

 

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Teaser:
UConn Revamps Uniforms and Helmets for 2015
Post date: Wednesday, April 29, 2015 - 20:57
Path: /college-football/unlv-unveils-new-uniforms-and-las-vegas-themed-helmets-2015
Body:

It’s a new era of UNLV football with first-year coach Tony Sanchez making the jump from Bishop Gorman High School to the head coach position with the Rebels.

 

And Sanchez is hoping to revamp the program with a fresh start, including new uniforms and helmets for 2015.

 

On Wednesday night, UNLV unveiled its new uniforms and helmets for 2015, including a “Welcome to Las Vegas” sticker on the back of the helmets.

 

 

Teaser:
UNLV Unveils New Uniforms and Las Vegas-Themed Helmets for 2015
Post date: Wednesday, April 29, 2015 - 20:24
All taxonomy terms: Overtime, News
Path: /overtime/what-if-nba-teams-had-helmets
Body:

What if NBA teams had helmets? It’s an interesting question posed by James Politi and Luke Daly.

 

The NBA has a good collection of logos – new and old-school designs – so what better way to answer that question than to actually design helmets with NBA logos?

 

To help pass the long offseason until the start of the NFL, Politi and Daly created helmets for all NBA teams. :

 

Here are some of our favorites:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Teaser:
What if NBA Teams had Helmets?
Post date: Wednesday, April 29, 2015 - 12:17
Path: /college-football/ranking-pac-12s-quarterbacks-2015
Body:

Quarterback play is usually a strength in the Pac-12, and all signs point to 2015 as another deep year for signal-callers on the West Coast. USC’s Cody Kessler leads the way in our quarterback rankings, but California’s Jared Goff is a rising star and should have a huge season in Sonny Dykes’ offense.

 

After Kessler and Goff is a duo of intriguing quarterbacks in Arizona’s Anu Solomon at No. 3 and Oregon’s Vernon Adams at No. 4. As a graduate transfer, Adams has only one season of eligibility remaining. However, he is a huge addition to the Ducks as they look to replace Marcus Mariota.

 

To help compile the rankings, there was some projection involved for 2015. This was not a ranking of quarterbacks only based on accomplishments so far or pro potential. All factors - pure talent, supporting cast, 2015 projection and scheme changes (just to name a few) - were considered and projected to rank the quarterbacks in the Pac-12 for 2015.

 

Ranking the Pac-12 Quarterbacks for 2015

 

1. Cody Kessler, USC

2015 Year of Eligibility: Senior

 

The Trojans have playoff aspirations in 2015, and coach Steve Sarkisian’s team might have to lean on its offense early in the season with the departure of Leonard Williams at defensive end. Scoring points shouldn’t be a problem for USC next season, as Kessler is poised to challenge for All-American honors, and the receiving corps is stocked with talent. In 13 games last year, Kessler threw for 3,826 yards and 39 scores. He also tossed just five interceptions. One area for Kessler to improve in 2015: Performances against top 25 teams. In games against ranked teams in 2014, Kessler threw only four touchdowns to three interceptions.

 

2. Jared Goff, California

2015 Year of Eligibility: Junior

 

California’s offense thrived in coach Sonny Dykes’ second year, increasing its scoring average from 23 points a game in 2013 to 38.3 in 2014. A big reason for the offensive explosion was the development of Goff. In his second year as the starter, Goff threw for 3,973 yards and 35 scores to only seven interceptions. The junior is poised for an even better 2015 season, as California returns one of the nation’s best receiving corps and an underrated running back Daniel Lasco.

 

3. Anu Solomon, Arizona

2015 Year of Eligibility: Sophomore

 

Solomon was solid in his first year as the starter, completing 313 of 540 passes for 3,793 yards and 28 scores. He also rushed for 291 yards and two touchdowns. But Solomon suffered an ankle injury late in the year and struggled in his final two outings, tossing two picks against Boise State and throwing for only 34 yards against Oregon in the Pac-12 Championship. While Solomon’s finish left something to be desired, he should rebound with a full offseason to heal. Coach Rich Rodriguez is among the nation’s top offensive minds, and with a loaded receiving corps in place, Solomon is poised to improve off a promising freshman campaign.

 

4. Vernon Adams, Oregon

2015 Year of Eligibility: Senior

 

Adams is easily one of the nation’s most intriguing quarterbacks for 2015. In three years at Eastern Washington, Adams threw for 10,438 yards and 110 scores and added 1,282 rushing yards and 11 touchdowns. With one year of eligibility left as a graduate student, Adams transferred to Oregon for his final season. The senior inherits big shoes to fill with Marcus Mariota off to the NFL, but Adams is a dynamic replacement. It may take a game or two for Adams to adjust to the FBS level. However, the California native should keep Oregon’s offense performing at a high level and will be among the Pac-12’s top quarterbacks in 2015.

 

5. Mike Bercovici, Arizona State

2015 Year of Eligibility: Senior

 

This will be Bercovici’s first opportunity to be Arizona State’s No. 1 quarterback for a full season, but he’s already a known commodity in Tempe. The California native started three games in 2014 and finished last season with 1,445 yards and 12 passing scores to just four interceptions. Bercovici torched UCLA’s secondary for 488 yards and threw for 510 yards (and the game-winning Hail Mary as time expired) versus USC. If the senior picks up where he left off as a fill-in for Taylor Kelly, Arizona State’s offense will be among the best in the Pac-12 once again. And he has a little extra help on the way with the addition of UCLA graduate transfer Devin Lucien at receiver.

 

6. Kevin Hogan, Stanford

2015 Year of Eligibility: Senior

 

Stanford’s defense is expected to take a step back with the departure of a handful of key players. But even if the Cardinal isn’t as dominant on defense in 2015, coach David Shaw’s team could match last year’s win total with improvement on offense. Hogan is a three-year starter under center and is coming off back-to-back solid outings to end Stanford 2014 season. Against UCLA and Maryland, Hogan completed 30 of 39 passes for 423 yards and four scores. If Hogan picks up where he left off in 2014, the senior should have his best season in a Stanford uniform.

 

7. Sefo Liufau, Colorado

2015 Year of Eligibility: Junior

 

Liufau threw for 3,200 yards and 28 scores in his first full year as Colorado’s starting quarterback. The Washington native also completed 66.1 percent of his passes in Pac-12 games and finished 2014 by throwing for 317 yards against Utah. Liufau’s development is a big reason why the Buffaloes are poised to take a step forward in coach Mike MacIntyre’s third season after winning just one conference game over the last two years. Top receiver Nelson Spruce also returns, giving Colorado one of the Pac-12’s top quarterback-receiver connections in the conference.  

 

8. Travis Wilson, Utah

2015 Year of Eligibility: Senior

 

Wilson returned from an injury-shortened 2013 season to throw for 2,170 yards and 18 touchdowns. The California native lost the starting job to Kendal Thompson for two games but still guided Utah to its best record in Pac-12 play since joining the conference in 2011. In addition to his passing numbers, Wilson added 309 yards and five scores on the ground. The Utes need to find playmakers at receiver, but the offensive line is solid, and running back Devontae Booker is one of the best in the Pac-12. With a good supporting cast, the Utah coaching staff hopes Wilson puts everything together for a solid senior season.

 

9. Josh Rosen, UCLA

2015 Year of Eligibility: True Freshman

 

Talent certainly isn’t an issue for Rosen. The California native ranked as the No. 12 recruit in the 2015 247Sports Composite and enrolled in time to compete in spring practice. It’s never easy starting as a true freshman for a Power 5 team, but Rosen is UCLA’s best option at quarterback. Is he ready to take the reins of the Bruins’ offense in 2015? While he will need time to learn, UCLA should have a solid defense and returns standout running back Paul Perkins.

 

10. Luke Falk, Washington State

2015 Year of Eligibility: Sophomore

 

Falk isn’t guaranteed to start, as redshirt freshman Peyton Bender is still in the mix. However, Falk finished the spring on a high note, throwing for 323 yards and two scores in Washington State’s final scrimmage. Falk started the last three games of 2014 after Connor Halliday suffered a season-ending leg injury against USC. In five games last year, Falk completed 156 of 243 passes for 1,859 yards and 13 scores. If he holds off Bender, Falk is going to post huge numbers in Mike Leach’s high-powered offense.

 

11. K.J. Carta-Samuels, Washington

2015 Year of Eligibility: Redshirt Freshman

 

The Huskies have a three-way competition for the starting job with Cyler Miles not expected to return to the team in 2015. Carta-Samuels, Jeff Lindquist and true freshman Jake Browning will continue their battle into the fall after a close competition in the spring. Carta-Samuels is penciled in as the favorite here, but Lindquist or Browning could take the top spot in the fall. Carta-Samuels ranked as a four-star recruit in the 2014 247Sports Composite.

 

12. Seth Collins, Oregon State

2015 Year of Eligibility: True Freshman

 

All signs point to a rebuilding year in Gary Andersen’s debut at Oregon State. The Beavers return just nine overall starters and have significant question marks on both sides of the ball. Collins – a true freshman from California – finished spring ball with a slight edge over redshirt freshman Nick Mitchell for the starting job. Collins was regarded as a three-star recruit in the 247Sports Composite and completed 12 of 22 passes for 208 yards and two scores in Oregon State’s spring game. 

Teaser:
Ranking the Pac-12's Quarterbacks for 2015
Post date: Wednesday, April 29, 2015 - 11:00
All taxonomy terms: Arkansas Razorbacks, College Football, SEC, News
Path: /college-football/bret-bielema-receives-championship-belt-celebrate-arkansas-bowl-win-over-texas
Body:

Arkansas made quite the statement when it pounded Texas 31-7 in the Texas Bowl on Dec. 29. The Razorbacks thoroughly dominated their old Southwest Conference rivals, and while bowl games aren’t necessarily the best indicator of teams, it was a huge victory for coach Bret Bielema.

 

Fast forward to April and Bielema and Arkansas is still celebrating the victory over Texas.

 

On Monday, Bielema from a championship belt he received from the Texas Bowl victory. According to Bielema, the belt was produced by JT Custom Leather from Granbury, Texas.

 

Teaser:
Bret Bielema Receives Championship Belt to Celebrate Arkansas' Bowl Win Over Texas
Post date: Tuesday, April 28, 2015 - 12:44
All taxonomy terms: College Football, SEC, News
Path: /college-football/ranking-secs-quarterbacks-2015
Body:

A handful of SEC teams enter the offseason with uncertainty at quarterback, but there’s no doubt about which player belongs at the top of the rankings for 2015. Mississippi State’s Dak Prescott is the reigning first-team All-SEC quarterback and one of the top signal-callers in college football for 2015.

 

After Prescott is where the intrigue begins in the SEC. Auburn’s Jeremy Johnson is poised for a breakout year in his first season as the starter, while Texas A&M’s Kyle Allen and Tennessee’s Joshua Dobbs are two other rising stars to watch in 2015. Missouri's Maty Mauk and Arkansas' Brandon Allen are experienced options looking to make a move up the rankings.

 

To help compile the rankings, there was some projection involved for 2015. This was not a ranking of quarterbacks only based on accomplishments so far or pro potential. All factors - pure talent, supporting cast, 2015 projection and scheme changes (just to name a few) - were considered and projected to rank the quarterbacks in the SEC for 2015.

 

Ranking the SEC Quarterbacks for 2015

 

1. Dak Prescott, Mississippi State

2015 Year of Eligibility: Senior

 

En route to a top 10 finish in the Heisman voting, Prescott led Mississippi State to only its third double-digit win total in school history and earned first-team All-SEC honors. In 13 games last year, Prescott passed for 3,449 yards and 27 scores and added 986 yards and 14 rushing scores.

 

2. Jeremy Johnson, Auburn

2015 Year of Eligibility: Junior

 

Johnson might have the most upside of any quarterback in college football for 2015. The Montgomery native is at the controls of a high-powered offense and has impressed in limited action over the last two seasons. Johnson is 57 of 78 for 858 yards and nine scores since 2013 and has rushed for 40 yards and one score on 11 attempts. He may not have the mobility of Nick Marshall, but Malzahn will adapt the offense to fit Johnson’s strengths in 2015.

 

3. Joshua Dobbs, Tennessee

2015 Year of Eligibility: Junior

 

Dobbs provided a late-season spark for Tennessee’s offense in 2014. After not playing in the first seven games, Dobbs replaced Nathan Peterman against Alabama and threw for 192 yards and two scores in a 34-20 loss to Alabama. The Georgia native started the final five games for the Volunteers and guided the team to a 4-1 mark in that stretch. In his limited 2014 action, Dobbs threw for 1,206 yards and nine scores and added 469 yards and eight touchdowns on the ground.

 

4. Kyle Allen, Texas A&M

2015 Year of Eligibility: Sophomore

 

Similar to Auburn’s Jeremy Johnson, Allen is a quarterback with plenty of promise and upside in 2015. Allen replaced Kenny Hill as Texas A&M’s starter for the final five games of 2014 and finished the year with 1,322 passing yards and 16 scores. The Arizona native was the No. 10 prospect in the 2014 247Sports Composite and is only beginning to scratch the surface of his potential entering his sophomore year.

 

5. Maty Mauk, Missouri

2015 Year of Eligibility: Junior

 

Mauk has experienced his share of ups and downs as Missouri’s No. 1 quarterback. But in his first full season as the starter, Mauk guided the Tigers to a SEC East title and threw for 2,648 yards and 25 scores. Improving his play in conference games is a must if the Tigers want to challenge in the East Division once again. Mauk completed only 48.9 percent of his passes in SEC games last year.

 

6. Brandon Allen, Arkansas

2015 Year of Eligibility: Senior

 

New coordinator Dan Enos is tasked with helping Allen and the Arkansas’ passing offense take the next step in 2015. After dealing with a shoulder injury in 2013, Allen rebounded with a solid 2014 campaign and threw for 2,285 yards and 20 scores. Additionally, he only tossed five picks on 339 attempts. Expect more steady production from Allen in 2015.

 

7. Patrick Towles, Kentucky

2015 Year of Eligibility: Junior

 

Touted redshirt freshman Drew Barker will push for snaps this fall, but Towles is expected to claim the No. 1 spot for the opener. The Kentucky native quietly had a solid debut in his first full year as the starter, throwing for 2,718 yards and 14 scores. Towles also rushed for 303 yards and six touchdowns and ranked sixth in the SEC by averaging 251.8 total yards per game.

 

8. Jacob Coker, Alabama

2015 Year of Eligibility: Senior

 

Coker was expected by most to win the starting quarterback job last season, but Blake Sims edged the Florida State transfer and started all 14 games for Alabama. Coker enters 2015 as the frontrunner and holds a slight edge over David Cornwell for the No. 1 spot. In six appearances with the Crimson Tide last season, Coker threw for 403 yards and four touchdowns after completing 38 of 59 passes. Can Coker put it all together for a big senior year in Tuscaloosa?

 

9. Brice Ramsey, Georgia

2015 Year of Eligibility: Sophomore

 

Ramsey gets the nod here, but Faton Bauta made a strong case for the No. 1 job this spring. And needless to say, it’s safe to assume this battle will continue into the fall. Ramsey completed 24 of 39 passes for 333 yards and three touchdowns as Hutson Mason’s backup last year. Bauta has attempted only five passes in his Georgia career but brings more mobility to the position than Ramsey. The Bulldogs usually reload without much trouble at quarterback. The guess here is that continues, but Ramsey and Bauta will both see time early in 2015.

 

10. Chad Kelly, Ole Miss

2015 Year of Eligibility: Junior

 

Kelly continues the run of quarterbacks in this list not completely secure as the starter. The New York native started his career at Clemson and spent two years with the Tigers before transferring to East Mississippi Community College. In 12 games on the junior college level, Kelly threw for 3,906 yards and 47 touchdowns. Talent certainly isn’t an issue for the junior. Can he realize that potential under Hugh Freeze?

 

11. Will Grier, Florida

2015 Year of Eligibility: Redshirt Freshman

 

Treon Harris started the final six games of last season and guided Florida to a 4-2 mark. However, Harris could be unseated by Grier – the No. 48 prospect in the 2014 247Sports Composite – by this fall. Grier is a better fit for new coach Jim McElwain’s offense and finished spring by completing 8 of 11 passes for 136 yards in the spring game. While Grier’s arm should infuse some life into the passing attack, a bigger problem for McElwain and the Florida offense is a line that’s thin on overall depth and proven options.

 

12. Brandon Harris, LSU

2015 Year of Eligibility: Sophomore

 

Flip a coin on LSU’s starter right now. Anthony Jennings and Harris closed spring with little separation for the No. 1 job, which means the battle will continue into the fall. Jennings started 12 of LSU’s 13 games last year and threw for 1,611 yards and 11 scores. Harris made one start and completed 25 of 45 passes for 452 yards and six touchdowns. The upside is clearly in favor of Harris. But regardless of which quarterback starts, significant improvement is needed from the passing offense after averaging only 140.6 passing yards in SEC games last year.

 

13. Connor Mitch, South Carolina

2015 Year of Eligibility: Sophomore

 

Mitch didn’t play much as a freshman last year, completing 2 of 6 passes for 19 yards in two appearances. The sophomore spent the spring as the favorite to win the job and completed 10 of 16 passes for 183 yards and one touchdown in South Carolina’s final scrimmage. The North Carolina native was the No. 345 overall recruit in the 2013 247Sports Composite, and barring a big performance in the fall by true freshman Lorenzo Nunez, he should take the first snap of the season against North Carolina.

 

14. Johnny McCrary, Vanderbilt

2015 Year of Eligibility: Sophomore

 

McCrary was one of four quarterbacks to make a start for Vanderbilt last season. No Commodore quarterback eclipsed the 1,000-yard mark in passing yardage, with McCrary leading the way at 985. He also threw nine touchdowns and completed 51.3 percent of his passes. With Patton Robinette retiring from football this offseason, McCrary is the frontrunner, with Wade Freebeck and Shawn Stankavage the next in line.  

Teaser:
Ranking the SEC's Quarterbacks for 2015
Post date: Tuesday, April 28, 2015 - 11:00
All taxonomy terms: College Football, UCLA Bruins, Pac 12, News
Path: /college-football/ucla-student-willingly-gets-tackled-linebacker-myles-jack-good-reason
Body:

Danny Siegel is campaigning to be a student representative at UCLA, so he decided to take a hit from linebacker Myles Jack.

 

Yes, you read that correctly.

 

Jack is a likely All-American linebacker in 2015 and one of the Pac-12’s top returning players. Needless to say, Siegel probably felt this one the next morning.

 

Election commercials are usually must-skip television, but we give this one a thumbs up.

 

 

Teaser:
UCLA Student Willingly Takes a Hit From Linebacker Myles Jack
Post date: Monday, April 27, 2015 - 11:45
All taxonomy terms: ACC, College Football, News
Path: /college-football/ranking-accs-quarterbacks-2015
Body:

The ACC may not have a playoff contender with Florida State and Clemson each losing several key pieces off last season’s team, but this league will be intriguing with a solid group of quarterbacks returning to the conference in 2015. Clemson’s Deshaun Watson projects as the top passer in the ACC this season, as the talented sophomore is set to take control of a high-powered offense after shining in limited action last year.

 

Miami’s Brad Kaaya and Georgia Tech’s Justin Thomas take the next two spots after Watson, but North Carolina’s Marquise Williams and NC State’s Jacoby Brissett aren’t far behind. And there’s some intrigue with the other quarterbacks on this list, especially in Tallahassee as Everett Golson is expected to replace Jameis Winston, and Duke’s Thomas Sirk in David Cutcliffe's offense.

 

To help compile the rankings, there was some projection involved for 2015. This was not a ranking of quarterbacks only based on accomplishments so far or pro potential. All factors - pure talent, supporting cast, 2015 projection and scheme changes (just to name a few) - were considered and projected to rank the quarterbacks in the ACC for 2015.

 

Ranking the ACC Quarterbacks for 2015

 

1. Deshaun Watson, Clemson

2015 Year of Eligibility: Sophomore

 

Clemson will miss Chad Morris calling the plays, but the offense is in good hands with Watson and a deep group of skill players. Watson ranked as the No. 41 recruit in the 2014 247Sports Composite and threw for 1,466 yards and 14 touchdowns in eight appearances. Watson is recovering from a torn ACL but should be at full strength by this fall.

 

2. Brad Kaaya, Miami

2015 Year of Eligibility: Sophomore

 

There’s not much separating the No. 2 and No. 5 quarterbacks in the ACC this year. Based on pure talent, it’s hard to pick against Kaaya in this spot. He started all 13 games for Miami as a true freshman and threw for 3,198 yards and 26 scores. Kaaya’s supporting cast and offensive line is a question mark entering 2015, but he’s poised to take a step forward with another year to develop.

 

3. Justin Thomas, Georgia Tech

2015 Year of Eligibility: Junior

 

Thomas is the perfect fit in Georgia Tech’s option offense. In his first year as the starter, Thomas led the team with 1,086 rushing yards and eight scores. In guiding the Yellow Jackets to a Coastal Division title, he averaged 5.7 yards per carry and finished the season with back-to-back 100-yard efforts. Thomas wasn’t asked to throw much, but he tossed 18 touchdowns to just six scores and connected on nine passing plays of at least 40 yards.

 

4. Marquise Williams, North Carolina

2015 Year of Eligibility: Senior

 

Hip surgery sidelined Williams this spring, but if he’s 100 percent healthy by this fall, don’t be surprised if the senior ranks as high as No. 2 on this list. In eight ACC games last year, Williams passed for 2,021 yards and 14 scores to just five interceptions. Williams also led North Carolina with 783 rushing yards and 13 touchdowns last season. 

 

5. Jacoby Brissett, NC State

2015 Year of Eligibility: Senior

 

Brissett is another quarterback that could easily rank higher on this list by the end of the 2015 season. In his first year as the starter at NC State, Brissett threw for 2,606 yards and 23 scores and rushed for 529 yards and three touchdowns. The Florida transfer will have a rebuilt receiving corps to work with in 2015 but is poised to improve off his solid 2014 campaign.

 

6. Everett Golson, Florida State

2015 Year of Eligibility: Senior

 

The outlook for Florida State’s 2015 quarterback situation changed when Golson decided to transfer to Tallahassee. As a graduate transfer, Golson is eligible immediately and will push Sean Maguire for the starting job. In two years of playing time with the Fighting Irish, Golson threw for 5,850 yards and 41 scores and added 581 yards and 14 touchdowns on the ground. Picking up Florida State’s challenging offense will be Golson’s toughest task. Can he learn the complex Seminoles’ attack by September?

 

7. Chad Voytik, Pittsburgh

2015 Year of Eligibility: Junior

 

Voytik was steady in his first year as Pittsburgh starter, throwing for 2,233 yards and 16 touchdowns. The Tennessee native played better as the season progressed and threw only one interception over the final six games. Voytik has two of the ACC’s top skill players at his disposal in running back James Conner and receiver Tyler Boyd and one of the league’s best offensive lines. Voytik should take another step forward in his development under new coordinator Jim Chaney.

 

8. Reggie Bonnafon, Louisville

2015 Year of Eligibility: Sophomore

 

Three quarterbacks received starts for Louisville last season, and the Cardinals will open the fall with four players vying for the top spot. Penn State transfer Tyler Ferguson is a name to watch, and Will Gardner is returning from a knee injury this fall, but all signs point to Bonnafon taking the first snap for Louisville in 2015. As a true freshman last year, Bonnafon completed 61 of 120 passes for 864 yards and five scores. The Kentucky native’s athleticism could be a huge asset for a Louisville offense replacing three starters on the line. With Bobby Petrino calling the plays and tutoring the quarterbacks, whether it's Bonnafon, Ferguson, Gardner or Will Bonnafon, Louisville's offense should be fine at quarterback in 2015.

 

9. Michael Brewer, Virginia Tech

2015 Year of Eligibility: Senior

 

Brewer experienced his share of ups and downs in 2014. After leading Virginia Tech to an upset win over Ohio State with 199 passing yards and two scores, Brewer tossed seven picks in the next three games and threw for less than 200 yards in four out of his last six contests. Quarterback play isn’t solely to blame for the Hokies’ offensive woes, as the offensive line has struggled, and young skill players were thrown into the mix last year. Brewer should benefit from another offseason to learn coordinator Scot Loeffler’s offense. But can the senior cut down on the interceptions and add more big plays (only nine completions of 30 yards or more)? If he can, Brewer will move up this list in 2015.

 

10. Thomas Sirk, Duke

2015 Year of Eligibility: Junior

 

Intriguing. That’s the first word that comes to mind when examining Sirk’s potential in 2015. Coach David Cutcliffe is a noted quarterback guru, and Sirk played well in limited action last year. In 12 appearances, Sirk showed no ill-effects from an Achilles injury that ended his 2013 season, rushing for 238 yards and eight scores. He also completed 10 of 14 passes for 67 yards and three touchdowns. Considering Cutcliffe’s history and Sirk’s promising performance so far, he’s a quarterback to watch closely in 2015.

 

11. Terrel Hunt, Syracuse

2015 Year of Eligibility: Senior

 

Hunt’s 2014 season was cut short by a leg injury in Syracuse’s 28-6 loss to Louisville in early October. Prior to the leg injury, Hunt was off to a slow start and only had one touchdown pass on 83 completions. He also completed 57.2 percent of his passes and finished with 983 yards. Hunt’s mobility is a good asset for Syracuse’s offense, and the senior has 792 yards on the ground over the last two years. The Orange has to find a spark on offense, and Hunt’s return could be what this unit needs after averaging just 17.1 points per game in 2014.

 

12. Matt Johns, Virginia

2015 Year of Eligibility: Junior

 

In a bit of a surprise, Johns edged ahead of Greyson Lambert for Virginia’s starting quarterback spot this spring. Johns played in all 12 games and recorded three starts in 2014 and finished with 1,109 passing yards and eight scores. It’s a limited sample size, but Johns added some punch to the passing attack last year by connecting on seven plays – one more than Lambert had in nine starts – of 30 yards or more.

 

13. John Wolford, Wake Forest

2015 Year of Eligibility: Sophomore

 

Wolford was thrown into the fire as a true freshman last season. And all things considered, it wasn’t a bad debut for Wolford. The supporting cast was a huge question mark for the Demon Deacons last year, as the rushing attack averaged just 1.3 yards per carry, while the line allowed 48 sacks (the most in the nation). Wolford finished 2014 with 2,037 yards and 12 touchdowns and completed 58.3 percent of his passes. The supporting cast remains a question mark, but the sophomore should be better in his second as a starter.

 

14. Darius Wade, Boston College

2015 Year of Eligibility: Sophomore

 

With only eight career pass attempts and experience in three games, Wade enters 2015 at the bottom of the ACC quarterback rankings. However, there’s plenty of promise with the sophomore in his first year as Boston College’s starter. Wade earned Delaware’s 2013 Gatorade Player of the Year honors and was a three-star recruit in the 2014 247Sports Composite. Wade is a good fit in Boston College’s offense, but he is also working behind a line that lost all five starters and throwing to a receiving corps that needs more playmakers to emerge.  

Teaser:
Ranking the ACC's Quarterbacks for 2015
Post date: Monday, April 27, 2015 - 11:00
Path: /college-football/virginia-tech-unveils-new-alternate-helmets-2015-game-against-furman
Body:

Virginia Tech doesn’t deviate from its usual uniform combinations much, but the Hokies plan on wearing an alternate helmet for their 2015 matchup against Furman on Sept. 12.

 

The helmet was unveiled during Saturday’s spring game in Blacksburg.

 

Check out Virginia Tech’s new helmet for Military Appreciation Day on Sept. 12:

 

 

Teaser:
Virginia Tech Unveils New Alternate Helmets for 2015 Game Against Furman
Post date: Saturday, April 25, 2015 - 16:37
Path: /college-football/michigan-state-updates-uniforms-and-unveils-new-spartan-themed-alternate
Body:

Michigan State’s green and white uniforms are some of the best in the Big Ten. And with spring practice wrapping up in East Lansing, the Spartans have decided to unveil their new uniforms for 2015.

 

There’s not a drastic change in the green/white combinations, but Michigan State will have a new alternate for 2015. , the alternates were inspired by Spartan shields and the phalanx battle formation.

 

Check out Michigan State’s green and white uniforms and the new alternate:

Teaser:
Michigan State Updates Uniforms and Unveils New Spartan-Themed Alternate
Post date: Thursday, April 23, 2015 - 20:02
Path: /college-football/north-carolina-updates-football-uniforms-argyle-design-2015
Body:

North Carolina’s uniform is one of the best in the ACC, and the Tar Heels will open 2015 with a revamped design to the helmet, jersey and pants.

 

By no means is this a drastic redesign for North Carolina. However, the uniform features argyle on the uniform and helmet.

 

Here are more photos of North Carolina’s football uniforms for 2015:  

Teaser:
North Carolina Updates Football Uniforms With Argyle Design for 2015
Post date: Tuesday, April 21, 2015 - 08:30
All taxonomy terms: NFL, News
Path: /nfl/cleveland-browns-unveil-new-uniforms-2015-season
Body:

The 2015 season is still a few months away, but Cleveland is getting an early start by releasing its updated jerseys for the upcoming year.

 

The Browns didn’t drastically alter their uniforms in this update, but it's also hard to call this change an improvement. One of the biggest changes is the addition of the word "Cleveland" on the front of the jersey.

 

Here’s a few photos from Tuesday night’s release in Cleveland:

 

 

Teaser:
Cleveland Browns Unveil New Uniforms for 2015 Season
Post date: Tuesday, April 14, 2015 - 20:12
Path: /college-football/army-shows-awesome-new-uniforms-and-logo-athletic-rebrand
Body:

Army’s entire athletic program will have a new look and logos following an announcement about an athletic rebrand.

 

Army’s athletic programs will now be known as Army West Point. Additionally, sharp new uniforms and logos are coming in 2015.

 

for more information on why Army is rebranding its programs as Army West Point.

 

Here’s some photos from Monday’s announcement: 

Teaser:
Army Shows Off Awesome New Uniforms and Logo in Athletic Rebrand
Post date: Monday, April 13, 2015 - 21:28
All taxonomy terms: College Football, TCU Horned Frogs, Big 12, News
Path: /college-football/tcu-unveils-new-uniforms-2015
Body:

TCU just missed out on playing in college football’s playoff in 2014, and the Horned Frogs will resume their quest for the national championship with a new uniform combination in 2015.

 

After Friday night’s spring game, TCU released its new jerseys and helmets for the upcoming year, which featured a few differences from last year’s variation.

 

TCU’s new uniforms feature a purple, gray and frog skin design. Here’s a look at the new uniforms for 2015: 

Teaser:
TCU Unveils New Uniforms for 2015
Post date: Friday, April 10, 2015 - 21:33
Path: /college-football/college-footballs-top-25-players-rise-2015
Body:

Each season always brings a new cast of college football stars. Whether it’s touted true freshmen living up to the hype in their first season on campus, a sophomore ready to emerge in their second year, or an upper classmen taking on a bigger role, there’s no shortage of breakout player options in the preseason.

 

Which players might emerge with a breakout year in 2015? Here’s a list of 25 players on the rise for this season, headlined by Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson and Auburn signal-caller Jeremy Johnson.

 

And if you want to go deeper, take a look at the individual position breakdowns – , , and – for on the rise options this spring.


Related:
 

College Football's Top 25 Players on the Rise for 2015

 

1. Deshaun Watson, QB, Clemson
Clemson has won at least 10 games in each of the last four seasons and has a good shot at extending that streak to five in 2015. Watson is the biggest reason for optimism and potential at contending for the ACC Championship, as the sophomore is expected to be at full strength in his recovery from a torn ACL by the season opener. The Georgia native ranked as the No. 41 recruit in the 2014 signing class and completed 93 of 137 passes for 1,466 yards and 14 scores in his debut. Watson also rushed for 200 yards and five scores last season. The departure of coordinator Chad Morris was a big loss for Clemson, but with Watson’s return and a talented group of skill players, the Tigers will be among the ACC’s best on offense in 2015.

 

2. Jeremy Johnson, QB, Auburn
Johnson varies slightly in style to former starter Nick Marshall, but Auburn’s offense shouldn’t miss a beat in 2015. The Alabama native ranked as the No. 11 pro-style quarterback in the 2013 signing class and has played well in limited action over the last two years. Johnson completed 29 of 41 passes for 422 yards and six scores in 2013 and threw for 436 yards and three touchdowns in 2014. He also has two starts under his belt, including one against Arkansas (2014). Johnson may not have the dynamic mobility of Marshall, but the junior is going to have a huge season directing the offense for coach Gus Malzahn. 

 

3. Leonard Fournette, RB, LSU
Fournette was regarded as the No. 1 player in the 2014 247Sports Composite and certainly didn’t disappoint in his Baton Rouge debut. In 13 appearances, Fournette rushed for 1,034 yards and 10 scores. He also made an impact on special teams, averaging 26 yards per kickoff returns and one touchdown. With LSU struggling to find consistent production from its passing game, the ground attack will have to carry the offense in 2015. With Terrence Magee and Kenny Hilliard out of eligibility, Fournette should see an uptick in carries and production next year and should be considered a lock for All-SEC honors this offseason.

 

4. Dalvin Cook, RB, Florida State
With quarterback Jameis Winston off to the NFL, the focus for Florida State’s offense shifts to the ground attack and talented sophomore Dalvin Cook. As a true freshman last season, Cook rushed for 1,008 yards and eight scores and caught 22 passes for 203 yards. The Miami native averaged 141.3 rushing yards over his final three games, including 6.9 yards per carry in the Rose Bowl against Oregon. Cook was a five-star recruit coming out of high school and is poised to push for All-American honors in 2015.

 

5. Adoree' Jackson, CB/WR, USC
Jackson is one of the Pac-12’s most explosive players and one of the nation’s top all-around playmakers. The Illinois native caught 10 passes for 138 yards and three touchdowns last season and scored four times on special teams. Jackson also recorded 49 tackles (four for a loss) and broke up 10 passes in 2014.
 

6. Shaq Lawson, DE, Clemson
Clemson ranked first nationally by holding opponents to just four yards per play in 2014. But coordinator Brent Venables will have his hands full this spring, as the Tigers return only two starters and lose several standouts from the front seven. Lawson is expected to be one of the defense’s top linemen after recording 34 tackles and 3.5 sacks in a backup role last season.
 

7. Jabrill Peppers, DB, Michigan
Peppers was expected to play a meaningful role in Michigan’s secondary last season, but the New Jersey native was sidelined after three games due to a leg injury. With a full offseason to recover, Peppers is ready to become a key contributor for the Wolverines. New coordinator D.J. Durkin plans to use Peppers as a safety in 2015, which should allow the No. 3 prospect in the 2014 247Sports Composite to emerge as a impact defender for Michigan this year. 
 

8. JuJu Smith, WR, USC
The biggest void on USC’s offense heading into 2015 is at receiver with the departure of Nelson Agholor. Last season, Agholor led the Trojans with 104 catches for 1,313 yards and 12 scores. Coach Steve Sarkisian isn’t hurting for options at receiver with the emergence of Smith, along with the addition of a talented recruiting class for 2015. Smith ranked second on the team with 54 catches for 724 yards and five scores last season and is expected to emerge as quarterback Cody Kessler’s go-to target in 2015.


9. Mason Rudolph, QB, Oklahoma State
It’s no coincidence Oklahoma State’s improvement on offense late in the year came with Rudolph at the helm. The Cowboys scored at least 30 points in five games against Power 5 opponents. Rudolph was the quarterback for two of those efforts, including an impressive 38-35 win over Oklahoma and a 30-22 bowl win over Washington. The South Carolina native finished 2014 with 853 passing yards and six scores in three appearances. Rudolph needs more help from his supporting cast in 2015, but the potential is certainly there for the sophomore to earn All-Big 12 honors.
 

10. Rod Johnson, OT, Florida State
Florida State’s offensive line struggled to find consistency through the first half of 2014 but performed better late in the season. The line’s improvement was largely due to Johnson taking over at left tackle and shifting All-American Cameron Erving to center. Johnson started the final five games of 2014 and will be one of the ACC’s top offensive linemen in 2015.  
 

11. Malik Zaire, QB, Notre Dame
Zaire isn’t guaranteed the starting job for 2015, as Everett Golson remains in the mix after throwing for 3,445 yards last season and enters next season with 23 starts under his belt. However, all signs point to Zaire emerging as Notre Dame’s No. 1 option under center. In seven appearances last season, Zaire completed 21 of 35 passes for 266 yards and one touchdown, while rushing for 187 yards and two scores. The Ohio native’s most-impressive outing took place against LSU in the Music City Bowl, throwing for 96 yards and a touchdown, while adding 96 yards and a score on the ground in the upset win over the Tigers. With a strong supporting cast in place, Zaire has all of the necessary pieces for a breakout year.
 

12. Mackensie Alexander, CB, Clemson
Alexander is one of two Clemson players to make this list. The Florida native was forced to redshirt in 2013 due to injury but quickly emerged as the team’s top defensive back last season. Alexander started all 13 games, recorded 21 tackles and six pass breakups, while also playing the most snaps by a freshman in school history. Alexander should be one of the ACC’s top cornerbacks in 2015.
 

13. Raekwon McMillan, LB, Ohio State
Ohio State’s defense doesn’t have many question marks entering spring ball, but the linebacker corps is looking for a new starter after the departure of Curtis Grant. There should be a flawless transition from Grant to McMillan, as the Georgia native was regarded as the top recruit in the Big Ten for the 2014 signing class. McMillan played in 14 games last season and recorded 54 tackles, one interception and 2.5 sacks.
 

14. Corey Clement, RB, Wisconsin
Melvin Gordon leaves big shoes to fill at running back for Wisconsin, but new coach Paul Chryst is inheriting a rising star in Clement. The New Jersey native was Gordon’s top backup in 2014 and rushed for 949 yards and nine scores on 147 attempts. Clement never recorded more than 17 rushing attempts in a game last year, so there’s plenty of room for his overall production to grow with more carries in 2015. He also rushed for 547 yards as Wisconsin’s No. 3 running back in 2013. Clement may not match Gordon’s 2,587 rushing yards from last season, but he should be one of the Big Ten’s top running backs in 2015.
 

15. Malik Jefferson, LB, Texas
Jefferson ranked as the No. 10 prospect in the 2015 247Sports Composite and big things are expected from the Texas native in 2015. With the Longhorns replacing Jordan Hicks and Steve Edmond, Jefferson has a clear path to major snaps or a starting role. Expect Jefferson to be one of college football’s top freshmen performers.
 

16. Kyle Allen, QB, Texas A&M
Since joining the SEC in 2012, the Aggies have averaged 41.3 points per game. Life after Johnny Manziel presented a few challenges in 2014, but the arrow on Texas A&M’s offense is pointing up headed into 2015. Allen started the final five games for coach Kevin Sumlin, including a four-touchdown performance against Auburn and a 294-yard effort against West Virginia in the Liberty Bowl. The Arizona native finished 2014 with 1,322 passing yards and 16 touchdowns. Allen will be pushed by talented freshman Kyler Murray this offseason, but the edge in experience should help the sophomore hold onto the starting job. With a talented receiving corps returning, Texas A&M’s passing offense should be among the SEC’s best once again in 2015.
 

17. Joshua Dobbs, QB, Tennessee
The insertion of Dobbs into the starting lineup in late October sparked Tennessee to a 4-2 finish over its last six games. The Georgia native threw for 192 yards against Alabama after replacing Nathan Peterman in the first half and guided the Volunteers to a 45-42 upset win over South Carolina by accumulating 467 total yards and five scores. Dobbs also played well in the bowl win over Iowa by accounting for 205 yards and three scores. The junior should have more help from his supporting cast in 2015, as Tennessee should be healthier at receiver, and a young offensive line has a full offseason to grow. Dobbs should push for All-SEC honors in 2015.
 

18. Seth Russell, QB, Baylor
Over the last five seasons, Baylor’s starting quarterback has averaged 4,031 yards and 30 touchdowns. With Bryce Petty off to the NFL, the keys to a high-powered offense are in Russell’s hands. Of course, he has to hold off a challenge this offseason from sophomore Chris Johnson and talented true freshman Jarrett Stidham. However, there’s a clear edge in experience for Russell, as he has one start under his belt and completed 48 of 85 passes in 2014. The Texas native torched Northwestern State for five scores and 438 yards last year and completed 8 of 17 passes for 82 yards in relief of Petty against Texas Tech. With one of the nation’s top receiving corps in place, Russell – if he wins the job – will be next standout quarterback for coach Art Briles.
 

19. Nate Gerry, S, Nebraska
Gerry surprisingly earned only honorable mention by the coaches All-Big Ten team last season. The South Dakota native started all 13 games in 2014 and recorded 88 tackles and five interceptions. New defensive backs coach Brian Stewart should help Gerry develop into one of the Big Ten’s top performers at safety in 2015.


20. Budda Baker, S, Washington
Washington’s secondary experienced its share of ups and downs last season. However, after playing freshmen and sophomores in major roles in 2014, the Huskies should see improvement from a secondary that gave up 55 passing plays of 20 yards or more. Baker was regarded as the No. 55 recruit in the 2014 247Sports Composite and played significant snaps as a true freshman. In 13 games, Baker recorded 80 tackles, one sack, one interception and six pass breakups.
 

21. Christian McCaffery, RB, Stanford
For the first time since the 2007 season, the Cardinal did not have a rusher reach the 1,000-yard mark in 2014. That one-year 1,000-yard rusher drought could be short-lived, as McCaffrey is primed for a breakout season in 2015. As a true freshman in 2014, he recorded 300 rushing yards (seven yards per carry) and caught 17 passes for 251 yards and two scores. McCaffrey recorded at least 57 rushing yards in three out of the final four games, including 77 against Utah on Nov. 15.
 

22. Demario Richard, RB, Arizona State
The future of the Arizona State backfield appears to be in good hands with Richard leading the way in 2015. The Sun Devils also return D.J. Foster (1,081 rush yards in 2014), but the senior is expected to shift to more of a running back/receiver role in 2015. Richard was solid in limited action last year, rushing for 478 yards and four scores on 84 attempts. He eclipsed the 100-yard mark against a tough Utah defense on Nov. 1 and contributed 41 yards on seven attempts in the bowl win over Duke. Richard should have no trouble exceeding last year’s numbers in 2015.

 

23. Harold Brantley, DT, Missouri
Missouri has been a factory for All-SEC talent at defensive end over the last two seasons, but don’t overlook Brantley’s contributions to the defense in 2014. The Pennsylvania native made six starts as a freshman in 2013 and emerged as the team’s top interior player last year. In 14 games, Brantley recorded 30 tackles (five for a loss) and three pass breakups. With two seasons under his belt, Brantley should be poised for his best year in a Missouri uniform.


24. Malik McDowell, DT, Michigan State
McDowell was a huge catch on the recruiting trail for coach Mark Dantonio, and the Michigan native didn’t disappoint in his true freshman campaign. McDowell played in all 13 games and recorded 15 tackles and 1.5 sacks. With Lawrence Thomas expected to move to defensive end this spring, McDowell is expected to take on a bigger role with the line for 2015. Expect to see McDowell wreaking havoc against opposing Big Ten offensive lines this year.
 

25. Wyatt Teller, OG, Virginia Tech
Teller redshirted in his first season at Virginia Tech and made the transition from defensive end to the offensive line. And despite not starting a full season, Teller emerged as the Hokies’ top lineman. Teller started 13 games, including the final six as a starter. The Virginia native should be an All-ACC performer in 2015.

Teaser:
College Football's Top 25 Players on the Rise for 2015
Post date: Thursday, April 9, 2015 - 10:30
Path: /college-football/college-footballs-top-15-quarterbacks-hot-seat-2015
Body:

Quarterback is easily the position with the most pressure in any college football season. Whether it’s a quarterback fighting to keep a starting job, replacing a standout from the prior season or just looking to elevate their overall play, signal-callers will be securitized and watched closely all offseason.

 

With spring practice underway, quarterback play is under the spotlight and battles across the nation are up for grabs. Which 15 quarterbacks head into 2015 with big expectations as they replace a big name? And which quarterbacks are fighting to hold onto the job this offseason?

 

Here are 15 names to consider as names on the hot seat (for various reasons) in 2015: 

 

Six Quarterbacks …Fighting to Remain a Starter

 

Michael Brewer, Virginia Tech

Brewer experienced his share of ups and downs in 2014, and the pressure is on the Texas native to take a step forward. In 13 games last season, Brewer threw for 2,692 yards and 18 scores and led the Hokies to an upset win over Ohio State. However, he also tossed seven picks in ACC play, passed for only 80 yards in a loss to Miami and threw for 126 yards and one interception in a 6-3 defeat against Wake Forest. Virginia Tech has one of the nation’s best defenses, and a talented group of skill players returning in 2015. If Brewer cuts the number of interceptions and plays with more consistency, the Hokies can challenge for the Coastal title. If Brewer stumbles, Brenden Motley appears to be next up on the depth chart.

 

Jake Coker, Alabama

Coker was expected to win the starting job after transferring from Florida State to Alabama last season. However, Blake Sims held off Coker for the No. 1 spot and threw for 3,487 yards and 28 scores. With Sims expiring his eligibility, the job is Coker’s to lose this spring. The senior will see competition from freshmen David Cornwell and Blake Barnett and junior Alec Morris. With an elite defense and rushing attack, Alabama doesn’t need Coker to be an All-SEC passer. But can he deliver with the game on the line and make enough timely throws to elevate the Crimson Tide into the national title?

 

Anthony Jennings, LSU

According to the recruiting rankings, LSU has one of the SEC’s best rosters. But even with a roster loaded with raw talent, the Tigers won’t contend for the West Division title unless the quarterback play improves in 2015. Jennings completed only 48.9 percent of his passes last season and finished 2014 by averaging only 110.4 yards in SEC contests. Jennings is locked into a tight battle for the starting job, as sophomore Brandon Harris ranked as the No. 75 prospect in the 2014 247Sports Composite and played in eight games last year.

 

Trevor Knight, Oklahoma

Settling the quarterback job is the top priority for new coordinator Lincoln Riley. The Sooners have ranked near the bottom of the Big 12 in passing offense in back-to-back seasons and averaged only 184.8 yards through the air in conference contests in 2014. Knight appeared to be a rising star after his performance against Alabama in the Sugar Bowl, but he finished with just 14 touchdowns to 12 interceptions last year. Knight will be pushed by Texas Tech transfer Baker Mayfield and Cody Thomas this spring. Can he find the form that propelled the Sooners to a bowl win over Alabama at the end of the 2013 season? Or will Knight lose the battle to start under center?

 

Joel Stave, Wisconsin

Defense and the stellar play of running back Melvin Gordon led the way for Wisconsin last season. The Badgers averaged only 150 passing yards in Big Ten games, with Stave throwing for 1,350 yards and nine scores. He also tossed 10 picks and completed 53.4 percent of his passes. Even though Gordon is off to the NFL, the rushing attack should be strong with Corey Clement in a full-time role. But how much of a difference will new coach Paul Chryst make with the passing attack? Tanner McEvoy moved to defensive back, leaving Bart Houston, D.J. Gillins and freshmen Alex Hornibrook and Austin Kafentzis as candidates to push Stave for the starting job. The sluggish passing game isn’t all Stave’s fault, as Wisconsin has to develop more weapons at receiver this offseason.

 

Tyrone Swoopes, Texas

A similar storyline is set to unfold at Texas in coach Charlie Strong’s second season. The Longhorns will be strong on defense and enter the year with question marks on offense. Swoopes finished 2014 with 2,409 passing yards and 13 scores and added 262 yards and four touchdowns on the ground. Texas plans to make a few tweaks to its offense in 2015, which includes utilizing the quarterbacks more on the run. Swoopes will be pushed for time by redshirt freshman Jerrod Heard this spring and needs to show marked improvement in order to stay at the top of the depth chart for 2015.

 

Five Players Under Pressure At National Title Contenders

 

Vernon Adams, Oregon

Replacing a Heisman Trophy winner is never easy. However, that’s the task ahead for Oregon coach Mark Helfrich this offseason. Adams is transferring from Eastern Washington but won’t arrive on campus until this summer. The California native was one of the top players on the FCS level over the last three seasons and should be a good fit in the Ducks’ high-powered offense. Adams is a dynamic playmaker and could be one of the Pac-12’s top quarterbacks in 2015. How quickly will he pickup the offense and adjust to play on the FBS level?

 

Jeremy Johnson, Auburn

All signs point to Johnson as the next breakout star at quarterback. The junior is at the controls of coach Gus Malzahn’s high-powered offense and played well in limited action through the first two seasons of his career. Johnson is a different quarterback than his predecessor Nick Marshall. The Montgomery native is a 6-foot-5 pocket passer with a cannon for an arm. Johnson certainly isn’t a statue in the pocket, but the quarterback runs under Marshall likely won’t be as prominently featured in 2015. If Johnson lives up to the hype, Auburn could win the SEC title and rank among the four teams for a playoff bid.   

 

Sean Maguire, Florida State

Maguire has the monumental task of replacing Jameis Winston after one of the best two-year runs by a starting quarterback. While losing Winston to the NFL was a huge blow to Florida State, coach Jimbo Fisher is one of the top offensive minds in the nation and a noted quarterback guru. Maguire made his first career start against Clemson last season, completing 21 of 39 passes for 304 yards and one score. The New Jersey native is expected to claim the starting job this spring and will have a strong supporting cast at his disposal in 2015.

 

Brice Ramsey, Georgia

Out of the quarterbacks in this section, Ramsey is the one with the least amount of job security. The sophomore entered spring as the frontrunner to replace Hutson Mason but will face competition from Jacob Park and Faton Bauta. In eight games last season, Ramsey completed 24 of 39 passes for 333 yards and three scores. Will Ramsey emerge as the favorite under new coordinator Brian Schottenheimer? The Bulldogs have one of the nation’s top running backs in Nick Chubb, along with a defense that should be better in coordinator Jeremy Pruitt’s second season. Contending for a national title could hinge on how quickly Georgia settles its quarterback situation.

 

Seth Russell, Baylor

Russell saw significant action last year, which included one start while Bryce Petty was dealing with a back injury. In eight appearances, Russell completed 48 of 85 throws for 804 yards and eight scores. Coach Art Briles is one of the best in the nation at finding and developing the next star at quarterback, and Baylor’s offense won’t miss much of a beat with Russell under center. However, if he stumbles, Jarrett Stidham – the No. 38 prospect in the 2015 247Sports Composite – will be ready to push for snaps.

 

Not in Danger of Losing the Starting Spot…But Has to Play Better

 

Tommy Armstrong, Nebraska

If Armstrong develops as a passer under coach Mike Riley and Nebraska’s new offense, the Cornhuskers can win the Big Ten’s West Division in 2015.

 

Kevin Hogan, Stanford

Hogan turned in two solid performances at the end of 2014, and it’s critical for Stanford’s offense to shoulder more of the load in 2015 with several key players departing on defense.

 

Mitch Leidner, Minnesota

Leidner is a good fit for Minnesota’s offense with his mobility (452 yards and 10 scores in 2014), but he has to improve his completion percentage (51.5).

 

Maty Mauk, Missouri

Mauk completed only 48.9 percent of his passes in SEC games last season. Improving that number is critical to Missouri’s hopes of winning the East once again in 2015. However, the Tigers must replace their top three receivers from last year.

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Post date: Thursday, April 2, 2015 - 11:00

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