College Football Blog

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  • By Steven Lassan, 1 hour 6 min ago

    Washington quarterback Cyler Miles has been suspended for the 2014 season opener against Hawaii. Miles’ suspension was announced on Thursday at Pac-12 Media Days by first-year coach Chris Petersen.

    Miles was involved in an off-the-field incident in February and missed all of spring practice.

    The sophomore was reinstated to the team in May and is slated to compete for the starting job in fall practice with Jeff Lindquist and Troy Williams.

    Miles is considered a rising star in the Pac-12 and should reclaim the starting job in time for the second game against Eastern Washington.
     

    Williams and Lindquist will compete in the fall to start against Hawaii, and the Huskies are big favorites against the Rainbow Warriors.

    While the opener shouldn’t be too much of a challenge for Washington, getting Miles acclimated into the offense will be something to watch early in the year.

    After missing spring practice, the sophomore is already playing catch-up this fall. With Eastern Washington, Illinois and Georgia State on the schedule before playing Stanford, Miles will have time to transition into the starting role before the Huskies step into the heart of their Pac-12 slate.

     

  • By Steven Lassan, 7 hours 3 min ago

    Houston is expected to be one of the top contenders for the American Athletic Conference title in 2014, and the Cougars will have a new uniform design as they push for the conference crown.

     

    Houston released an updated look at its uniforms for the upcoming year on Wednesday, which is just a slight alteration on its 2013 design.

    Here’s a look at the 2014 uniforms:

     

  • By Steven Lassan, 2 days 50 min ago

    TCU defensive end Devonte Fields has been separated from the school after allegations stemming from a domestic disturbance case. Fields is under investigation, but no charges have been filed in the case so far. The Star-Telegram reported the details on Fields' status on Tuesday.

    Fields is indefinitely separated from TCU pending the outcome of the investigation into the allegations.

    The off-the-field incident comes at a bad time for Fields, as he was picked as the Big 12 preseason defensive player of the year for 2014.

    Fields played in only three games due to injury in 2013 and recorded two tackles for a loss. In 2012, Fields was voted as the Big 12 Defensive Freshman of the Year and won AP Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year honors.

    If Fields returns in time and at full strength for the season opener, he has a chance to be one of the top defensive ends in the Big 12 once again.

    Even without Fields, TCU’s defensive line will be among the best in the conference. The Horned Frogs return experience at end with James McFarland and Terrell Lathan, with Chucky Hunter and Davion Pierson anchoring the interior.

     

  • By Steven Lassan, 1 week 1 day ago

    Notre Dame is switching from natural grass to FieldTurf in 2014, and the Fighting Irish will also have a new field design.

    The traditional blank field with diagonal striping in the endzones has been a staple at Notre Dame Stadium, but there will be a slight alteration to the FieldTurf in 2014.

    The FieldTurf will feature a Notre Dame logo at the 50-yard line, along with shamrocks at the 35-yard line for kickoffs.

    Check out the school’s release for more information on the new field design for 2014:

  • By Steven Lassan, 1 week 1 day ago

    UCLA’s uniforms haven’t changed much in recent seasons, but the Bruins used an alternate “LA Midnight” look last season and recently unveiled a new “LA Steel” uniform for 2014.

    These uniforms are quite a change from the classic UCLA jersey and helmet and feature metallic design additions to the shoulder pads and around the numbers, which is a tribute to the bright lights of Los Angeles.

    According to the release on the official school website, this will be the first gray uniform in school history.

    Here’s a look at UCLA’s new alternate jerseys for 2014: 

  • By David Fox, 1 week 2 days ago

    HOOVER, Ala. — Will Muschamp opened his meeting with the media in Hoover with an 11-minute filibuster, acknowledging the business of his future employment but still putting off any real questions.

    “There will be a lot of chatter about hot seat business,” Muschamp said, unprompted. “That's part of it. The way you combat that is having a winning football team and winning football games, which is what we're going to do.”

    The “hot seat” is the media cliche of the preseason — who is on it, who is off, what does a coach need to do to get off of it or get fired.




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    After a 4-8 season, Muschamp draws the hot seat straw in the SEC this year, joining names like Derek Dooley, Joker Phillips and Houston Nutt (twice).

    “There was never any time in my mind that I didn't think I would be retained,” Muschamp said.

    After home losses to Vanderbilt and Georgia Southern and one of the worst offenses in the country, Muschamp isn’t defending record as much as he’s trying to instill hope.

    The record includes a Sugar Bowl but also the worst Florida season since 0-10-1 in 1979. The hope is that the offense won’t be ranked around teams like Eastern Michigan, Memphis, UConn and Idaho.

    For that, Muschamp added Duke’s Kurt Roper, his third offensive coordinator in four seasons. The move is expected to add more shotgun offense, more quick passes and more running opportunities for quarterback Jeff Driskel, recruited in the spread option under former coach Urban Meyer.

    The hope is also that Florida will stay healthier. Driskel was lost for the season in September. The injuries continued with Driskel’s backup, Tyler Murphy, and a host of other players on offense.

    By the end of the season, trainer Paul Silvestri visited Muschamp in the defensive coaching room at 10 p.m. one day game week. Silvestri was rarely in the football office at that time of night. He was this night to tell to coach that offensive lineman Tyler Moore injured his elbow in a scooter accident.

    “I can't tell you exactly what I said, but it wasn't good,” Muschamp said. “That was at a point where, you know, I asked him, You got to be kidding?  That was a point where, you know, it was just very frustrating.”

    Was it the injuries? Was it the offense? Was it bad luck? Or was it Muschamp?

    Florida may find out this season.

    “I’ve mentioned it multiple times today, there is no pressure,” Driskel said. “Every coach is on the hot seat.”

  • By Steven Lassan, 1 week 3 days ago

    Auburn quarterback Nick Marshall was recently cited for possession of marijuana and was replaced at SEC Media Days by tight end C.J. Uzomah.

    Marshall’s citation raised questions about his status for Auburn’s opener against Arkansas on Aug. 30, and coach Gus Malzahn did not clarify his quarterback situation in Hoover, Ala. on Monday.

    “It is a privilege and a reward to represent Auburn here at the SEC Media Days,” Malzahn said. 

    “Last Friday Nick lost that privilege. We have high expectations for our players, but specifically our quarterback, being the face of our program.
     




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    Up until last Friday, Nick has been a model student, teammate, and citizen. Nick made a mistake and he'll have to deal with the consequences. I'm not ready to say what those consequences are at this time, but he will deal with it. I know he's regretful and he feels very bad about it.”

    In his first season at Auburn in 2013, Marshall threw for 1,976 yards and 14 touchdowns and added 1,068 yards and 12 scores on the ground.

    Marshall began his career at Georgia but was dismissed from the team due to off-the-field issues.

    If Marshall is suspended or benched for the opener against Auburn, the Tigers will turn to sophomore Jeremy Johnson.

    Johnson threw for 422 yards and six touchdowns in limited action last year.

  • By Steven Lassan, 1 week 3 days ago

    Auburn’s defense is expected to improve in its second year under the direction of veteran coordinator Ellis Johnson, but the Tigers have suffered their first setback of the 2014 season. Coach Gus Malzahn announced at SEC Media Days that defensive end Carl Lawson suffered a torn ACL and is expected to miss most of the 2014 season.

     

    “I'd like to confirm that Carl had successful ACL surgery the first part of May,” Malzahn said at SEC Media Days. 

    “He injured his knee the last week of spring practice.  Dr. Andrews looked at it, wanted to wait a couple weeks till the swelling went down to be sure.  He confirmed he needed surgery.  It was successful.
     

    Carl is working extremely hard and he's determined to come back towards the end of this year.”

    Lawson is expected to return at some point during the 2014 season, and it would be a surprise if he spent the year as a redshirt, especially with a likely early entry into the NFL Draft after his junior year. The sophomore could target a late-season return, especially with key conference games against South Carolina, Ole Miss and Georgia in the final half of the year.

     

    As a true freshman last season, Lawson played in all 14 games, registered 20 tackles (7.5 for a loss) and recorded four sacks.

    Lawson was projected to be a third-team Athlon Sports All-SEC performer in 2014. His emergence was critical for an Auburn defense that was already losing first-round pick Dee Ford and defensive tackle Nosa Eguae.

    With Lawson out indefinitely, the Tigers need more from sophomore Elijah Daniel and senior LaDarius Owens off the edge.

    Auburn’s defense allowed 5.9 yards per play last season and gave up 29.6 points per game in SEC contests.

    Despite the yards and points allowed, the Tigers made stops when it counted. Auburn led the SEC in third-down defense and finished second in redzone defense.

  • By David Fox, 1 week 3 days ago

    HOOVER, Ala. — Invoking quotes from Dwight D. Eisenhower, Winston Churchill and Nelson Mandela, SEC commissioner Mike Slive on Monday reiterated his goal to change the NCAA's legislative process granting more autonomy for the five power conferences.

    Slive outlined the goals of the SEC, ACC, Big 12, Big Ten and Pac-12 to have autonomy in decision-making within in the NCAA or establish a new division. Slive’s statements at SEC Media Day on Monday mirrored his statements earlier in the spring.

    Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott and Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany have made similar such statements.

    “We are not deaf to the din of discontent across collegiate athletics that has dominated the news,” Slive said.

    “The educational and cultural significance of intercollegiate athletics is far too important for us not to seek positive solutions to existing challenges.  This is why we have been actively engaged in building a bridge to provide a needed avenue of change for the NCAA with the primary objective of enhancing the support enjoyed by Division I student‑athletes while maintaining and preserving the collegiate model.”




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    Autonomy would allow the SEC and the other four power conferences more ability to offer full cost-of-attendance scholarships, expanded health care and scholarships beyond five years.

    The NCAA board of directors is expected to vote on autonomy in August.

    “As I have said before, if we do not achieve a positive outcome under the existing big tent of Division I, we will need to consider the establishment of a venue with similar conferences and institutions where we can enact the desired changes in the best interests of our student‑athletes” Slive said.

  • By Steven Lassan, 1 week 3 days ago

    There’s a new era upon college football in 2014. The BCS era ended with Florida State’s victory over Auburn in Pasadena, and the playoff era is set to begin at the end of this season.

    There are plenty of changes for the new format, which features a four-team playoff, with a championship game that’s bid out to cities similar to the Super Bowl.

    And of course, there’s the hardware.

    The crystal ball trophy was an easily recognizable piece of hardware that was awarded to the champion in previous years. However, starting in 2014, the champion of college football’s playoff will get to hoist a new trophy.

    Check out college football’s new trophy, which was unveiled on Monday in Dallas:

     

     

     

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