NCAA Football

Penn State Nittany Lions vs. Ohio State Buckeyes Betting Odds, Football Pick

Ohio State owns three straight victories over rival Penn State, seven wins in the last nine meetings between the teams and a 6-3 record against the spread over that same span. The unbeaten Buckeyes shoot for a fourth straight win over the Nittany Lions Saturday night at the Horseshoe in Columbus.


Point spread: The Buckeyes opened as 17.5-point favorites, according to sportsbooks monitored by Odds Shark. (Line updates and matchup report)

College football pick, via Odds Shark computer: 40.9-18.4 Buckeyes


Why the Penn State Nittany Lions can cover the spread

The Lions are off to a 5-1 start to this season after beating Indiana last week 29-7 and easily covering as four-point home favorites. That game was tied at 7-7 after one quarter, but Penn State scored the last 22 points of the game. The Lions outgained the Hoosiers 420 yards to 234, outrushed them 154-79 and held the ball for almost 36 minutes, although it should be noted Indiana was without its starting quarterback.

Penn State opened this season with an upset versus Temple but buried the game tape and responded by winning its next five games. With good performances by quarterback Christian Hackenberg, who has thrown just two interceptions this season after tossing 15 last season, and the defense, which has limited its last five foes to 12 points per game, the Lions could make some real noise this week.


Why the Ohio State Buckeyes can cover the spread

Ohio State isn't playing up to preseason expectations, but that's only because those expectations were so sky-high. The defending national champs are 6-0 this season after dispatching Maryland last week 49-28, although they couldn't quite cover as 31-point favorites.

The Buckeyes spotted the Terrapins the first touchdown of the game, then scored the next three. When Maryland tied the game early in the third quarter, Ohio State responded by scoring the next 28 points.

Buckeyes quarterback Cardale Jones, who has caught some flak recently, came up with his best performance of the year last week, throwing for 291 yards with two scores and no picks, while running back Ezekiel Elliott produced his 11th straight 100-yard rushing performance.

Ohio State hasn't really clicked yet this season; when it does, it's going to embarrass somebody.


Smart pick

Buckeyes financial backers are suffering this season because their team is favored by so much so often. While undefeated, Ohio State is also just 1-5 ATS. So while OSU will likely win this game, the smart play here is Penn State, plus the points.


Betting trends

Ohio State is 7-2 straight up and ATS in its nine games at home against Penn State.

The total has gone over in five of Penn State's last six games.

Penn State is 0-4 ATS in its last four conference games on the road.


All point spread and lines data courtesy of Odds Shark, and all quotes gathered firsthand unless otherwise noted. Check out Twitter for injury and line movement updates and get the free odds tracker app.

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Michigan State Spartans vs. Michigan Wolverines: Betting Odds, Football Pick

Michigan State long played the role of little brother in the football rivalry with Michigan, but things have changed. The Spartans have won six of the last seven meetings outright and covered the spread in the last seven in a row.

In a big early-season Big Ten battle, the Spartans and Wolverines play for the Paul Bunyan trophy on Saturday afternoon at the Big House in Ann Arbor.


Point Spread: The Wolverines opened as seven-point favorites.

Odds Shark Computer Pick: Wolverines 28.9, Spartans 19.3


Why the Michigan State Spartans Can Cover the Spread

Michigan State is 6-0 after beating Rutgers 31-24 last week. The Spartans trailed early, took a 24-14 lead in the third quarter, allowed the Knights to come back and tie the score at 24-24, then won it on LJ Scott's short touchdown run with less than a minute to go.

Michigan State gained 489 yards to Rutgers' 349 and had over 34 minutes of possession. However, it couldn't cover as a 12.5-point road favorite.

So stretching back to last season, the Spartans have now won 10 games in a row.

Michigan State has become quite the road warrior under head coach Mark Dantonio, going 25-14 straight up and 27-11 against the spread over its last 38 road contests. That includes a 2-1 SU and 3-0 ATS mark at Michigan Stadium.


Why the Michigan Wolverines Can Cover the Spread

Jim Harbaugh owns a proven record of rebuilding programs, but nobody expected the quick turnaround he's pulling off at his alma mater. Michigan is off to a 5-1 start (4-2 ATS) under Harbaugh after routing a ranked Northwestern team 38-0 last week, easily covering as a 10-point home favorite.

The Wolverines returned the opening kickoff for a touchdown Saturday and never let the Wildcats in the game, as the defense pitched its third straight shutout.

On the day, the Wolverines gained 380 yards to Northwestern's 168, won the ground battle handily (201 yards to 38) and held the ball for over 37 minutes.

Two weeks ago, Michigan blanked Maryland 28-0, and it blanked BYU 31-0 three weeks ago. The Wolverines have also out-gained their last five opponents by an average of almost 250 yards.


Smart Pick

Michigan State is 8-1-1 ATS its last 10 times out as an underdog, winning six of those games outright. If this game were lined before the season started, Michigan State might have been favored. Despite Michigan's great play as of late, the smart money here resides with the Spartans, plus the points.


Betting Trends

  • Michigan State is 7-0 ATS in its last seven games against Michigan.
  • Michigan State is 0-6 ATS in its last six games.
  • The total has gone under in six of Michigan's last seven games at home.


All point spread and lines data courtesy of Odds Shark, all quotes gathered firsthand unless otherwise noted. Check out Twitter for injury and line movement updates and get the free odds tracker app.

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Iowa Hawkeyes vs. Northwestern Wildcats Betting Odds, College Football Pick

After winning and covering in Madison a couple weeks ago, Iowa is 5-2 both straight up and against the spread over its last seven Big Ten road games. Northwestern, on the other hand, even after a victory and cover against Minnesota a couple weeks ago, is only 2-7 SU and 3-6 ATS over its last nine conference home contests.

In a big game in the Big Ten West, the division-leading Hawkeyes battle the Wildcats Saturday afternoon in Evanston.


Point spread: The Hawkeyes opened as 2.5-point favorites, according to sportsbooks monitored by Odds Shark. (Line updates and matchup report)

College football pick, via Odds Shark computer: 20.3-17.2 Hawkeyes


Why the Iowa Hawkeyes can cover the spread

Iowa is off to a 6-0 start to this season, 4-2 ATS, after beating Illinois last week 29-20. The Hawkeyes took the lead for good midway through the second quarter and held on from there, although they couldn't quite cover as 11-point home favorites. Iowa outrushed the Illini 278-46, as running back Jordan Canzeri went off for 256 yards on 43 carries, and won time of possession by a 36-24 margin. And usually numbers like that are good for covers.

Two weeks ago the Hawkeyes held the Badgers running game to just 86 yards in a 10-6 conference road victory. On the season the Iowa defense ranks 23rd overall, and fifth against the run, allowing just 78 yards per game. Now the Hawkeyes go against a Northwestern team that just got shut out at Michigan.


Why the Northwestern Wildcats can cover the spread

The Wildcats won their first five games this season, including their season opener over Stanford and their Big Ten opener over Minnesota, but laid a big egg in a 38-0 loss at Michigan last week. Northwestern gave up a touchdown on the opening kickoff, and things just went downhill from there. No amount of disinfectant can scrub that stain clean; the Wildcats just have to put last week behind them and move on.

Two weeks ago Northwestern pitched a shutout of its own in a 27-0 victory over the Gophers. The Wildcats outrushed Minnesota that day 184-74, and they shockingly outrushed the Cardinal back in that Week 1 win 225-85. In fact, Northwestern has outrushed five of its six opponents this season by an average of almost 85 yards per game.

College football is an emotional game, and emotions can vary from week to week; after last week's debacle the Wildcats are prime candidates for a bounce-back effort.


Smart pick

This should be a tight one, as the spread indicates, but ultimately, Northwestern is a better team than it showed last week and will be eager to prove it. The smart money here rides with the Wildcats.


Betting trends

Northwestern is 6-2 SU in its eight games at home against Iowa.

The total has gone under in five of Northwestern's last six games.

Iowa is 6-2 ATS in its last eight conference games on the road.


All point spread and lines data courtesy of Odds Shark, all quotes gathered firsthand unless otherwise noted. Check out Twitter for injury and line movement updates and get the free odds tracker app.

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Arizona State Sun Devils vs. Utah Utes Betting Odds, Analysis, Football Pick

Arizona State is 4-0 against Utah since the latter joined the Pac-12 four seasons ago, but the last two meetings have been close, with the Utes covering as underdogs. But enough of that—Utah looks to snap that streak and stay undefeated when it hosts the Sun Devils Saturday night in Salt Lake City.


Point spread: The Utes opened as 6.5-point favorites, according to sportsbooks monitored by Odds Shark (line updates and matchup report).

College football pick, via Odds Shark computer: 21.7-21.1 Utes


Why the Arizona State Sun Devils can cover the spread

ASU laid an egg a few weeks ago against USC but has won two straight since, including a 48-23 victory over Colorado last week. The Sun Devils led 14-0 seven minutes into the game and pushed that to 38-10 midway through the third quarter on their way to the cover as 16-point favorites. Arizona State outrushed the Buffaloes 231-49, while quarterback Mike Bercovici threw five touchdown passes, which gives him 14 on the season.

Two weeks ago the Sun Devils bounced back from that bad loss to the Trojans by beating UCLA at the Rose Bowl 38-23. ASU outgained the Bruins by more than 100 yards and basically dominated, winning outright as a 12-point road dog.

If the Sun Devils can come up with another performance like the last two, they might not need the points to cover.


Why the Utah Utes can cover the spread

Utah is off to a 5-0 start, after holding off Cal last week 30-24. The Utes took a 10-7 lead late in the first quarter and never trailed after that, eventually piling up 265 yards rushing. Running back Devontae Booker had 222 of those yards, while the defense picked off Heisman candidate quarterback Jared Goff five times.

Utah led by double digits twice but in the end came up one point short of pushing the spread as a seven-point favorite.

The Utes opened this season with a 24-17 victory over Michigan, which looks even better now after what the Wolverines have done recently. Utah also exposed Oregon as the pretender it is at the moment with that 62-20 blowout in Eugene three weeks ago.

Four years ago the Utes lost the matchup with Arizona State by three touchdowns; three years ago they lost by four touchdowns. Two years ago, though, Utah led by two scores in the second half before succumbing 20-19. And last year's game went to overtime before the Utes fell 19-16. Natural progression indicates Utah snaps this four-game slide Saturday night.


Smart pick

The Utes are suddenly a chic pick to click, climbing up the rankings and even into the national championship conversation. But head coach Kyle Whittingham might be wise to ban his players from reading media, because the hype can only hurt. Arizona State, meanwhile, sees this game as a chance to take the lead in the Pac-12 South. The smart choice here is the Sun Devils.


Betting trends

Arizona State is 4-0 straight up in its last four games against Utah.

Arizona State is 8-0 straight up and against the spread in its last eight games in October.

Utah is 1-5 against the spread in its last six conference games at home.


All point spread and lines data courtesy of Odds Shark. All quotes gathered firsthand unless otherwise noted. Check out Twitter for injury and line movement updates and get the free odds tracker app.

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Arizona State Sun Devils vs. Utah Utes Betting Odds, Analysis, Football Pick

Arizona State is 4-0 against Utah since the latter joined the Pac-12 four seasons ago, but the last two meetings have been close, with the Utes covering as underdogs...

Read the full article on Bleacher Report...

Alabama Crimson Tide vs. Texas A&M Aggies Betting Odds, College Football Pick

Texas A&M is off to a 5-0 start to this season and is 4-1 against the spread. Alabama, meanwhile, is 5-1 but only 2-4 versus the numbers. The Crimson Tide will go off as road chalk when they hit Kyle Field for a key game in the SEC West on Saturday afternoon in College Station.


Point spread: Crimson Tide opened as three-point favorites, according to sportsbooks monitored by Odds Shark (line updates and matchup report)

College football pick, via Odds Shark computer: 34.2-24.7 Crimson Tide


Why the Crimson Tide can cover the spread

Since dropping that game against Ole Miss last month, Alabama has won three straight contests, including a 27-14 decision over Arkansas last week. The Tide trailed the Razorbacks at the half, 7-3, but scored the next 24 points to take control.

Alabama also had the spread covered as a two-touchdown favorite until allowing a meaningless Hogs touchdown with a minute-and-a-half to go. On the night, the Tide outgained Arkansas 396-220, held the supposedly vaunted Razorbacks rushing attack to just 44 yards on just 25 carries and won time of possession by a 34-26 margin.

Two weeks ago, Alabama went into hostile territory in Athens and pounded Georgia, 38-10, so the Tide have no problem playing quality opponents in tough spots.


Why the Aggies can cover the spread

The Aggies sit just a half-game back of first-place LSU in the SEC West, with conference victories over Arkansas and Mississippi State. Two weeks ago, A&M beat the Bulldogs 30-17, covering as four-point favorites, then had last week off.

The Aggies rolled through their first four games this season, averaging almost 42 points per game, then got outplayed by the Razorbacks but prevailed in overtime, 28-21. Two weeks ago, A&M grabbed an early two-score lead over Mississippi State and never let go, eventually racking up 516 yards of offense with help from a second straight 300-yard passing performance from quarterback Kyle Allen.

The Aggies returned a ton of talent this season, including plenty of players who remember losing to Alabama last year, 59-0. So revenge, or at least redemption, might factor into their efforts on Saturday.


Smart pick

Alabama, of course, is fully capable of winning this game and covering this spread as road chalk, but this is a big one for A&M, and the off week in this instance should help. The smart choice in this spot is the home dog.


Betting trends

Alabama is 9-1 SU in its last 10 conference games.

Alabama is 4-1 SU and 1-4 ATS in its last five games.

Texas A&M is 5-12 ATS in its last 17 conference games.


All point spread and lines data courtesy of Odds Shark; all quotes gathered firsthand unless otherwise noted. Check out Twitter for injury and line-movement updates and get the free odds tracker app.

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Without QB Will Grier, Florida's Playoff Hopes Rest on Gators Defense

Florida's first tough loss of the 2015 season wasn't sealed in a football stadium on a Saturday afternoon—it came in a Monday press conference.

Head coach Jim McElwain announced Monday that Gators starting quarterback Will Grier has been suspended for one year after testing positive for a banned performance-enhancing substance found in an over-the-counter supplement, per Edward Aschoff of

Now Florida must head to LSU Saturday for a cross-divisional matchup of undefeated opponents without its offensive leader.

But while Grier won't suit up for the Gators in Death Valley, the rest of the players who have been key to Florida's unexpected and unbeaten start to 2015 will.

Was Grier one of the most important—if not the most important—players for the Gators as the starting quarterback? Absolutely. But he's just one player in a team game.

Florida has 10 other starters on the offensive side of the ball and numerous role players who have also made tremendous strides so far in 2015. One of the most inexperienced offensive lines in the country pushed Ole Miss around. The running backs and receivers are more consistent and explosive under a new coaching staff.

And then there are those excellent Gators who line up on the defensive side of the ball—the ones who are going to keep Florida's increasing hopes of playing for a championship alive.

Florida's offensive resurgence with McElwain and Grier has been well-documented at this point. But even with a new coaching staff, an elite Florida defense has remarkably improved its averages from a top-notch 2014 under former head coach Will Muschamp.

One of the biggest surprises from the Florida defense this season has been its improvement in the pass rush despite losing first-round draft pick Dante Fowler Jr. this offseason. According to Daniel Thompson of Gator Country, the Gators are averaging more sacks per dropback than last season. 

Combined with star defensive backs such as Vernon Hargreaves III and Jalen Tabor, Florida's pass defense has been elite in 2015. But Florida defensive line coach Chris Rumph said last week that he believed the best was still yet to come from the Gators up front.

"They’re still flashing," Rumph said, per Thomas Goldkamp of 247Sports. "We still haven’t played our best game yet as a unit. We have some guys that have some good individual performances the first few games, but as a unit, we’ve still got a ways to go. Those guys have to get better, I’ve got to coach them better."

Florida will be able to lean on that success and hunger from the defensive line in the next few weeks. Before facing Georgia's Greyson Lambert and Florida State's Everett Golson later this season, the Gators must tackle the challenge of an improving Brandon Harris at LSU.

Then, of course, there's Leonard Fournette.

LSU's Heisman front-runner at running back and its intimidating home-field advantage—a trademark night game in Death Valley—give the Tigers a clear edge over the Gators. Before the Grier news came down Monday, Florida already opened as a 6.5-point underdog, per Odds Shark

As Martin Fennelly of the Tampa Tribune wrote Monday, the difference between an expected loss for Florida in Baton Rouge on Saturday and a road upset is on the defense, not the adjusting offense.

"Look, neither Grier nor Harris was going to try to tackle Fournette, not that anyone has done much of that this season," Fennelly wrote. "I think LSU was going to win this game even with Grier, despite Florida’s stout defense showing large amounts of game while shutting down Ole Miss."

The Gators have already excelled on defense against a high-powered offense for an undefeated team. But LSU is a different animal than Ole Miss, and it's one the Gators will have to hunt away from home.

And even with its statistical dominance this season, Florida's defense knows it must step up against the run after what happened the last time it faced a good rushing attack. 

Florida allowed 254 yards and two touchdowns on 51 carries to the likes of Tennessee's Joshua Dobbs, Jalen Hurd and Alvin Kamara in its thrilling comeback victory over the Volunteers.

Now, with Fournette coming up, McElwain is calling out his rush defense.

"We’ll see how we do in practice," McElwain said, per Zach Abolverdi of the Gainesville Sun. "We’ll see if we actually wrap up. He’s probably excited as hell right now, saying 'I may be staring at a 300-yard game against these guys.'"

How Florida's defense handles Fournette and the rushing threat of Harris will set the tone for the stretch run of the 2015 season.

Georgia might not have star running back Nick Chubb for the rest of its season, but it can still lean on talented reserves such as Sony Michel and Keith Marshall. Then there's Dalvin Cook for Florida State—the nation's No. 2 running back behind Fournette.

Judging by the challenges the Gators still have left this season, Florida's playoff push will be decided by the play of its elite defense more than its offense.

As Andy Staples of Sports Illustrated wrote Monday, Florida is currently viewed as a team playing with "house money" after its better-than-expected start to 2015. Even without Grier, the Gators have already set themselves up in good position to challenge for the SEC title.

"If backup quarterback Treon Harris and a still-ferocious defense can somehow beat LSU or Georgia... Florida would stand a strong chance of winning the SEC East," Staples wrote. "The loss of Grier represents the loss of a little of that house money—but not all of it."

If Florida is able to cash in this season, the defense will take it straight to the bank.


Unless otherwise noted, statistics courtesy of

Justin Ferguson is a college football writer at Bleacher Report. You can follow him on Twitter @JFergusonBR.

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USC Recruits React to Trojans Firing Steve Sarkisian

The immediate response to Monday's news of the firing of head coach Steve Sarkisian varied throughout the program's 14 commits.

Sixteen, if you want to count outside linebackers Daelin Hayes and Mique Juarez, who have both decommitted since Sunday. Hayes decommitted hours after Sarkisian originally was placed on a leave of absence on Sunday. USC terminated Sarkisian the next day.

And then Tuesday morning, Juarez announced his decommitment via Twitter. Juarez was the highest-ranked USC commit and the program's lone 5-star pledge.

As USC attempts to bounce back, recruits are now in situations where they have to make big decisions: Do they stick with USC or go elsewhere?

While Hayes said he's still a fan of the USC coaching staff, he made his decision on Twitter, announcing that he is reopening his process:

The Trojans aren't expecting to lose many commits, but damage control will need to be done. Monday evening, flex tight end Thaddeus Moss, the son of NFL receiver great Randy Moss, tweeted that he is canceling his official visit to USC:

Moss was scheduled to make the trip the weekend of Nov. 27, as was Hayes. Now, it appears that neither will show for the big game against UCLA.

There are those commits who are weighing all pros and cons before making a final decision—which is expected with a decision of this magnitude. Receiver Tyler Vaughns said he needed additional time to clear his head and process everything happening.

"Right now, I just hope Sark gets the help he deserves," Vaughns said. "I'm praying for him."

As for his commitment status, Vaughns simply said, "We will see in the next few days."

Wide receivers Josh Imatorbhebhe and Velus Jones Jr. said they're still Trojans as of now. Imatorbhebhe's declaration came with a caveat of sorts.

"I'm still committed," he told Bleacher Report's Tyler Donohue, "but feel that it's wise to explore the other options that I have."

Jones tweeted that while he's in Sarkisian's corner, he's keeping his options open, despite maintaining his commitment:

Don't be surprised if several other commits have the same reaction. There's still plenty of love for USC without Sarkisian for a lot of athletes—particularly if some of the assistants remain on staff.

Offensive coordinator Clay Helton has taken over as interim head coach, and wide receivers coach Tee Martin is a must-keep, as he tops the list in the 247Sports recruiter rankings. He's had his hand in recruiting several of the 15 pledges.

The good news is that USC has commits who are staying with the program regardless of the situation. Defensive tackle commit Keyshon Camp said he is looking forward to representing the Trojans.

"I'm still committed to USC," Camp said. "I just send my blessings out to Coach Sark and his family."

Safety C.J. Pollard also said that he is still a solid commit to the Trojans. Pollard's commitment is important, as he's currently the team's only defensive back pledge.

"It's an unfortunate situation," Pollard said via public statement. "I think Sark is a great guy. My prayers are with him as he recovers."

Pollard then delivered news that will lift the spirits of USC fans.

"I'm still committed to USC," he said. "I have not wavered at all. I'm hopeful that USC will bounce back from it all."

USC is hoping to put Sarkisian's firing behind it quickly. The show must go on, which means the Trojans have to prepare for a road game Saturday against Notre Dame and then continue a brutal Pac-12 schedule, which includes Utah at home and Cal on the road this month, as well as November matchups with Arizona, Colorado, Oregon and UCLA.

And with recruiting being a lifeline, USC will need to continue focusing on landing some of the best players in the 2016 class. Among the players to watch are Isaac Nauta, the nation's top-ranked tight end, and local product Jack Jones, the nation's No. 3 athlete.


Damon Sayles is a National Recruiting Analyst for Bleacher Report. All quotes were obtained firsthand unless otherwise noted. All player ratings are courtesy of 247Sports' composite rankings. Follow Damon via Twitter: @DamonSayles.

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Watch High School LB Glide Through Air for Insane 1-Handed INT

Just when the quarterback thought he had a clean pass through the middle, here comes Justin Perkins with the gliding interception while keeping in stride en route to the touchdown.

Watch the play and let us know what you think!

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2017 ATH Antjuan Simmons Breaks Down Recruitment, Ohio State Visit

Given that he currently resides in Ann Arbor, Michigan, 2017 3-star athlete Antjuan Simmons is living in the shadows of all things related to the University of Michigan football program. 

The Wolverines have yet to offer Simmons, but the 6’1”, 205-pounder—who could play running back or linebacker at the next level—is perhaps the nation’s hottest recruit with 14 offers over the last three weeks. 

Schools from four of the five Power Five conferences are included in his offer spree. Also included in his flurry of offers is a tender from defending national champion Ohio State. 

Simmons made his way to Columbus last weekend for the Buckeyes' big win over Maryland. 

“The visit was really good. I got to talk with the whole coaching staff and my boy [current Buckeyes freshman running back] Mike Weber,” Simmons told Bleacher Report. “Me and him train together with Coach [Daryl] Graham. Overall, it was just a really good visit. I got to see what it's like on campus on game day. I got to see the campus and all of that type of stuff.”

Ohio State corners coach and special teams coordinator Kerry Coombs is his main recruiter. Simmons notes that he has begun to keep in contact with the Buckeyes staff on a weekly basis.

He even notes that the staff joked with him about his proximity to their most hated rivals.

“They just want me to make it back down to campus more often and get away from the Big House as much as I can and to stay in touch with them,” Simmons said with a chuckle.

Since receiving his offer from the Buckeyes in late September, Simmons admits that the program has made an impression on him. Head coach Urban Meyer and his staff have also impressed someone close to him who figures to be very influential when Simmons makes his decision.

“They are definitely trending in the right direction,” Simmons said of Ohio State. “I got a really good vibe from the coaching staff, and my mom did too. It’s not easy for people to get on mom’s good side.” 

While his profile has skyrocketed in recent weeks with offers from powers such as LSU, Miami, Michigan State, Notre Dame, Penn State and Tennessee, Simmons has maintained a mature approach about his recruitment.

“It’s been crazy. I’ve been able to talk with a lot of coaches over the last few weeks, Simmons explained. “But, I’m just trying to stay focused on our season. That’s what has been getting me to stay grounded. It’s cool, but I’ve got to stay on top of my schoolwork and keep a level head about everything.”

Even though he’s halfway through his junior year, Simmons has already concocted a plan on when a decision will eventually come. However, it’s a situation that will not entirely depend on when he reaches that conclusion.

“It depends on what happens with some of the other guys on our team,” Simmons said. “We have some guys who need some more looks [from colleges]. If that continues, then I will hold out so we can get more attention on our games and let colleges continue to come out and see us play. But if every one is good on that end, I will try and make the decision as early as possible.”

Simmons does not have a group of favorites yet, although he did mention LSU, Miami, Michigan State, Ohio State and Notre Dame as schools that are currently pushing hard for him. He also has identified a few factors that will take precedence in his decision-making process.

“I want to study kinesiology,” Simmons said. “So I definitely want a school that has my major. I want to see how the coaches take care of their players while they are there and even after football. I’m just looking for a place where I’ll be comfortable.”


Sanjay Kirpalani is a National Recruiting Analyst for Bleacher Report. Unless otherwise noted, all quotes obtained firsthand and all recruiting information courtesy of 247Sports.

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Chaotic College Football Season Right Up LSU's Les Miles' Alley

"This year is setting up perfect for a Les Miles-coached team."

Former LSU running back Jacob Hester knows exactly what that means.

In 2007, his Tigers vaulted all the way up from No. 7 in the penultimate BCS standings to the No. 2 spot following their win over Tennessee in the SEC Championship Game and losses from Missouri and West Virginia on the final weekend of the season.

It was a fitting end to one of the wildest seasons in college football history.

There were no dominant teams in 2007, and this year is already taking an eerily similar path.

In Week 5 this year, four top 10 teams lost. In Week 5 in 2007, five top 10 teams suffered defeats. 

No. 1 Missouri lost to No. 5 Kansas in the Big 12 Championship Game to open one door for LSU in 2007, and Pitt toppled the second-ranked Mountaineers to open another, and the top five was a revolving door all season that, at one time, landed South Florida at No. 2, Boston College at No. 3 and then—the cherry on top—saw Ron Zook lead Illinois to the Rose Bowl.

Then a senior, Hester and his Tigers really weren't supposed to be in position to play for a national title, much less win one.

They had fallen in triple overtime to Kentucky on the road earlier in the season, but just when Hester thought they were back in the mix for the national title, they fell at home to Houston Nutt's Arkansas Razorbacks the week prior to the SEC Championship Game.

"We lost two games in triple overtime, and those were heartbreakers," Hester said. "I can remember losing to Kentucky, and back then, really, we thought if you had a loss you were kind of out of it. We thought we were. Then obviously when we lost to Arkansas, we thought there was no way we'd be in."

Miles never let his team quit. 

"If you lose, digest it quickly; don't wallow in it and get ready to play next week, because you never know what is going to happen," said former LSU offensive lineman T-Bob Hebert, who redshirted on that 2007 team and hosts Double Coverage on 3WL 1350 in New Orleans.

This season is shaping up just like that one.

Why? There are no elite teams in college football.

Ohio State, the current No. 1 team in the country, has looked like the 2015 version of last year's Florida State squad—winning with its C-game more often than not. If head coach Urban Meyer doesn't pick things up, that C-game will become its 2015 A-game, and the Buckeyes will be toast.

No. 2 Baylor isn't exactly known to be a juggernaut this year either. Sure, the offense is putting up numbers that are impossible to achieve in Madden, but the defense might be their Achilles' heel during the grind of the Big 12 season. 

No. 3 TCU is riddle with injuries with a defense that has been far too inconsistent, No. 4 Utah needed six turnovers to outlast Cal, No. 7 Michigan State has struggled in virtually every game and No. 8 Florida just lost starting quarterback Will Grier for the rest of the year.

"There are a lot of really good football teams this year, but there's not one or two elite teams that we are used to having the last couple of years," Hester said.

Because all teams are flawed, the door is open wide for Miles and the Tigers.

We all know about Leonard Fournette. The superstar running back for the Tigers has rushed for 1,022 yards and 12 touchdowns in just five games this season and is the unquestioned front-runner in the race for the Heisman Trophy. 

But the Tigers are flawed.

Quarterback Brandon Harris topped the 200-yard mark through the air for the first time this season last week against South Carolina when he threw for 228 yards and two touchdowns, but 62 yards and one of those scores were on a bizarre tipped pass to Travin Dural. In three out of LSU's five games this year, Harris has failed to even top the 100-yard mark through the air.

"The biggest problem is if the quarterback is making bad decisions," Hebert said. "Last season, Anthony Jennings was a little inaccurate, and a lot of times he was making poor decisions. Stats haven't been great for Harris this year, and it seems like I'm making excuses for him every single week, but his decision-making has been really solid. At times he's been inaccurate, but he's getting a lot of drops from receivers."

Despite that, Fournette has saved the day, and the new-look defense under first-year coordinator Kevin Steele has held opponents to just 291.4 yards per game—third in the SEC.

Typically, one-dimensional offenses get beaten. This year, though, it's looking like every other team in the country is spinning its wheels, while LSU is simply going about its business.

How well have things shaped up for LSU?

With the suspension to Florida's Grier, LSU will play its fourth straight game against a team starting a backup quarterback (Grier, South Carolina's Perry Orth, Eastern Michigan's Brogan Roback and Syracuse's Zack Mahoney). The last full-time starting quarterback to start against LSU was Auburn's Jeremy Johnson, and that was his last start on the top spot of Auburn's depth chart.

LSU still has a rather daunting path, with games against Florida this weekend, at Alabama in early November and a stretch run that includes a home tilt vs. Arkansas, road trip to Ole Miss and a season finale vs. Texas A&M in Baton Rouge. 

Tough, yes. But this season feels like it's going to take a lot of twists and turns before all is said and done, which plays right into the "Mad Hatter's" personality.

Miles is living a charmed life so far this season, and the chaos around him and incomplete nature of even the top-ranked teams in college football are setting up 2015 to be the "Autumn of Miles."

"You know Les Miles: He's quirky and crazy, and that's why we love him," Hester said. 

The quirky and crazy Miles is a perfect fit for what's shaping up to be a quirky and crazy 2015 college football season.


Quotes were obtained firsthand unless otherwise noted. Recruiting information is courtesy of 247Sports. Statistics are courtesy of

Barrett Sallee is the lead SEC college football writer and national college football video analyst for Bleacher Report as well as a host on Bleacher Report Radio on SiriusXM 83. Follow Barrett on Twitter @BarrettSallee.

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Shawn Elliott Named South Carolina's Interim Head Coach

South Carolina named co-offensive coordinator Shawn Elliott as its interim head coach Tuesday following the abrupt resignation of Steve Spurrier on Monday night, as reported by's Mark Schlabach.

Thayer Evans of Sports Illustrated first reported Elliott would take over for Spurrier.

Andy Staples of Sports Illustrated states Elliott has been waiting for this opportunity and draws a parallel to Clemson's Dabo Swinney:

Elliott spent more than a decade at Appalachian State, first as a player and then as an assistant, before joining Spurrier's staff in 2010.

Naming an interim from within the current coaching staff rather than trying to immediately find a full-time replacement following the sudden change of heart from Spurrier is the right move. It provides a sense of stability and gives the department time to conduct a full search.

The team is off to a tumultuous 2-4 start with two blowout losses to ranked teams (Georgia and LSU). The Gamecocks' game against the Tigers also had to be moved to Louisiana after historic floods impacted South Carolina, making it incredibly difficult to focus on football.

Elliott, who's served as the run game coordinator and the offensive line coach, will do his best to help the players make it through the difficult stretch. Depending on how the team responds, he might emerge as the best long-term option for the position as well.


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College Football Rankings 2015: Win-Loss Records, Week 7 Standings for Top 25

Expect a substantial shuffle among the college football Top 25 rankings after the Week 7 slate.

There are five games pitting ranked teams against each other, including two SEC showdowns featuring Top 10 matchups. Nine of the Top 10 teams and 14 overall remain unbeaten.

The Week 7 mark generally indicates which teams are contenders and sprinkles a few surprise squads as well. Florida and Michigan, two storied programs that have spun a string of disappointing seasons, are back ahead of schedule and very much alive in the College Football Playoff picture.

It's also at this point of the year that the Heisman Trophy race takes form, and though LSU Tigers running back Leonard Fournette holds the pole position, a few dark horses could solidify their arguments with strong showings this weekend.

With arguably the most monumental slate of the season thus far ahead, here is the Associated Press Top 25.


FSU Remains Unbeaten, Cook Creating Heisman Chatter

The Florida State Seminoles jumped a spot to No. 11 in the latest rankings after a thrilling 29-24 win over the Miami Hurricanes in Week 6.

The three-time defending ACC champions entered the season with questions surrounding their offense after the departure of Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Jameis Winston and the addition of his high-profile replacement, Notre Dame transfer Everett Golson.

Golson broke out in Saturday's win with 291 yards and a touchdown. More chiefly, he has yet to turn the ball over, which was his pitfall for the Fighting Irish, having thrown 14 interceptions in 2014. Golson is a key factor to the Seminoles' success, but as Jared Shanker of noted, "Florida State remains undefeated because of [running back Dalvin] Cook."

With a hindered hamstring, Cook ran for 222 yards on 22 attempts with a pair of touchdowns in FSU's win over Miami. He also hauled in three catches for 47 yards and another score. It marked his third game in five tries with more than 150 yards rushing, and he's averaging nine yards per carry on the season.

Cook's best highlights against Miami were showcased in a video by the ACC Digital Network.

Head coach Jimbo Fisher believes Cook ranks among the nation's elite, per Shanker.

"You saw Dalvin Cook, one of the best pure players in college football. That guy is something different now," Fisher said. "I'm glad he's on my team, I know that."

Cook ranked fourth among Heisman candidates in a USA Todaypoll released this week.

FSU takes on struggling squads Louisville and Georgia Tech before a trip to No. 5 Clemson in a game that will likely determine the fate of the ACC Atlantic. Kirk Herbstreit of ESPN noted an FSU victory in Death Valley could position the Seminoles for a second straight trip to the College Football Playoff.

There is still much football to be played, but if Cook stays healthy and Golson continues to avoid mistakes, Florida State could go from sleeper to contender.

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College Football Rankings 2015: Power Ranking All 128 Teams for Week 7

Week 6 of the 2015 college football season didn't provide many upsets, at least not among the top teams, but it's not just wins and losses that lead to changes in how the power rankings come together each week.

Unimpressive wins can do just as much damage as a defeat, while a narrow loss can actually improve a team's resume by showing it can hang close when it was given no shot to compete.

Bleacher Report's power rankings are comprised of an average of five sources: B/R's weekly Top 25, the Associated Press Top 25, the Amway Coaches Poll, ratings guru Jeff Sagarin's computer rankings and the author's personal rankings for every FBS school. The top 50 teams are broken down individually, while the rest of the 128 FBS teams are summarized in a few easy-to-digest chunks.

Check out where everyone ranks after six weeks, and then give us your thoughts in the comments section.

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What Tennessee Can Use from Win over Georgia for Rest of 2015 Season

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Ever since last year's dramatic, come-from-behind overtime win over South Carolina, the Tennessee Volunteers have been waiting on that version of Joshua Dobbs to return.

He was there in Neyland Stadium on Saturday evening, decked out with his teammates in the Smokey gray uniform, a shield on his helmet fit to play super villain to Georgia in a 38-31 victory.

"I just went out and did my job. My job is to score touchdowns," Dobbs said after a 312-yard passing performance that was only part of the story in a game where he accumulated 430 total yards of offense. "I did that."

And the Vols were much better because of it. Offensive coordinator Mike DeBord called for more rollout passes and designed quarterback runs a week removed from inexplicably trying to transform Dobbs into a dropback passer against an Arkansas team that had struggled against mobile signal-callers.

Not only was that the way Dobbs needed to be handled against the Bulldogs; it's the way he needs to be unleashed against Alabama in two weeks and in every game moving forward.

If you make Dobbs a passing quarterback only, he's average. Utilize his dual-threat skills, and he can do special things, such as become only the third SEC quarterback in the past decade to throw for 300 yards and run for 100, joining Tim Tebow and Johnny Manziel.

It's just one of the several lessons UT coaches should have learned from a potential program-flipping win Saturday. Whether they take what they learned and apply it to the rest of the season may determine just how far these Vols can go.

"They had a different look," Vols coach Butch Jones said of his team. "This football team was not going to be denied."

It's that type of mentality Tennessee has been missing. Now that they have displayed it's in them, how can they cultivate that throughout the rest of the season and into the future?

Let's take a look at some things the Vols need to take from that victory over Georgia that can help them the rest of the way.


Open it up

Playing with a big lead against Oklahoma and Florida, Tennessee appeared to go the ultra-conservative route in order to protect a lead.

When the Vols got into a 24-3 hole against the Bulldogs, they were anything but timid. Instead, Jones dialed up numerous plays to get UT back into the game and ultimately into the lead.

Going for it on two fourth downs late in the first half not only led to the first Tennessee touchdown, it also had to give the Vols faith that their coaches trusted them to make plays. It was a bit of a desperation moment, and they came through both times.

UT methodically ran its offense throughout the game, finishing with 90 plays to UGA's 62, but the Vols were able to stay on the field because DeBord's play mix was so much better. They threw the ball downfield more, and even when it didn't work, they loosened up the defense.

They also got running back Alvin Kamara in space, and he absolutely must be involved in the offense more moving forward—as a runner and as a receiving threat where he grabbed two touchdown passes against UGA.

Jalen Hurd can't do everything by himself.

Dobbs' ability to beat teams with his legs was on full display, and the Dawgs had to account for that. They struggled doing so, and coordinator Jeremy Pruitt's unit suffered a forgettable day in the process.

Of course, when the Vols needed just one first down to really make things difficult on Georgia at the end of the game, DeBord called three consecutive Dobbs runs, and the quarterback couldn't quite make the yardage for a first down.

Was that a regression to the conservative style that had doomed the Vols this year? Maybe so. But it felt at the time like putting the game on the shoulders of a player who had refused to be denied all day. That's OK to do, too.

You want the ball in the hands of your best players with the game on the line, and that's what DeBord did.

He didn't come through with the first down that time, but if you keep displaying faith in him, he will. Maybe the Vols just needed to prove to themselves and everybody else that they were capable of making pivotal plays with the game on the line.


Trust your recruiting

There's a reason why everybody in the nation wanted prospects such as Preston Williams, Kahlil McKenzie, Jauan Jennings and Darrin Kirkland Jr.

They're really good young players.

All four played major roles for the Vols along with numerous others, and after working them in gradually over the first part of the season while less-talented upperclassmen took away valuable snaps, they played prominent roles in the win over Georgia.

Also, when sophomore guard Jashon Robertson went down with an injury, Jones played freshmen Chance Hall and Jack Jones along the offensive front, and both responded with exceptional games. They should have been playing more all along. Both are talented, and both proved the future is bright on the line.

The future should be now.

"They stepped up, were very calm and very poised," Jones said of the duo. "A lot of times when youngsters go in there, you get false starts, pre-snap penalties, missed assignments and all that, and they did not have that tonight. They played like a veteran group."

Jones has a little bit of Phillip Fulmer in him in that he likes to play the most experienced guys. There's nothing wrong with that if those upperclassmen are better players, but in most cases recently, they aren't. The Vols not only played a bunch of the young players against UGA, they leaned on them.

But it isn't just playing the freshmen. With the game in dire straits near the end of the first half, Jones opened up his offense and trusted all that talent he has recruited to make big plays. They proved they could, and that's the only way you grow up and get better.

That could be a huge turning point for this program to get over that psychological hump.


Press the issue

Tennessee is still struggling mightily in getting to the quarterback on defense, something they have to address. Derek Barnett hasn't been completely healthy the past few weeks, and with Curt Maggitt out, opponents have been able to devote more attention to stopping Barnett.

Kyle Phillips missed the Georgia game with injury, and Corey Vereen and LaTroy Lewis haven't gotten the sacks in the interim. But the Vols did blitz more against the Dawgs, and they especially did in crucial third- and fourth-down situations.

That's from a lesson learned the hard way in the Florida game.

Did they get to Greyson Lambert much? No, not enough, and the nine UT sacks this year must improve. But they did harass the UGA quarterback and force him into some errant decisions. Getting some extra pressure on him led to Lambert completing less than 50 percent of his passes.

Defensive coordinator John Jancek told the Knoxville News Sentinel's Dustin Dopirak:

The biggest thing is to try to get Derek back and give him some rest. He plays every play. It's just the volume on him has worn him down. We'll work on some of our line stunts. We gotta get into some team situations where there's play action and we gotta convert and just continue to bang away at it. There's no real secret. There's no magic formula that you can go to that all of the sudden you're going to get a great pass rush. Just continue to work on it and be diligent.

The off week needs to see the Vols work on generating some creative ways to get after the passer.

But the Vols did better against Georgia than they have, getting one sack and being credited with four quarterback hurries. It's not where they need to be, but they need to realize that a four-man rush isn't getting the job done.

In key moments, send pressure and give the opponent something to worry about.


Band together

Throughout last week, Jones told the media that the negative publicity surrounding the program brought the team closer together.

At the time, it sounded like your normal, everyday coachspeak. But after a huge, 14-point point swing with Leonard Floyd's 96-yard return of Jalen Hurd's fumble and then down three scores, the college football world saw firsthand that wasn't lip service.

"Like I said earlier, it galvanized us and brought us closer," Jones said. "For them to feel this way tonight and our fans to feel this way is very rewarding."

Added senior left tackle Kyler Kerbyson: "Yeah, it give us confidence as a team, it lets us know we're good. It just felt like everything was slipping away in those three losses. But this one really changes your mindset as a player and lets you know you’re a really good team and you guys mesh really well. So this was definitely huge for us."

How huge? The Vols flipped the narrative from the team that always finds a way to choke to the one that came through. With six games remaining in the season and plenty of winnable contests upcoming, that's invaluable.

It certainly was therapeutic for senior safety Brian Randolph, who shrugged off a trying season to make the play of the year, batting away Lambert's last heave toward the end zone.

Winning heals everything. Is it all sunshine and unicorns in Knoxville? Most likely no, but that isn't the case anywhere. However, that internal strife needs to stay internal. Social media doesn't need to be blowing up with rumors about what may or may not have happened.

That isn't good for the psyche of a team, and it isn't good for the perception of a program.

UT has to utilize this win as a catalyst to band together and prove to each other what can happen when a team plays together and everything clicks. This team is talented enough to win every game it plays, but it must be on the same page.

When that happens, you wind up arm-in-arm, standing in front of your band directing them in a rendition of "Rocky Top" while a stadium full of jubilant fans sing along.

It's not a bad payoff. The Vols have to build on that feeling moving forward.


All stats gathered from unless otherwise noted. All quotes gathered firsthand unless otherwise noted.

Brad Shepard covers SEC football and is the Tennessee lead writer for Bleacher Report. Follow Brad on Twitter @Brad_Shepard.

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ESPN 30 for 30 Trojan War: TV Schedule and USC Football Documentary Preview

Pete Carroll has done a fine job as head coach of the Seattle Seahawks. Since taking over the team in 2010, the Seahawks have gone 50-31 (as of October 11) with two Super Bowl appearances and one win in the big game. 

He's transformed the team his way, drafting players like the overlooked Russell Wilson, cobbling together one of the league's great secondaries and getting big, brutish football players to buy into techniques like yoga and mindfulness. 

Barring a dynastic run for the ages, his achievements with Seattle won't ever be quite as transcendent—or, depending on your view of the NCAA's sanctions, transgressive—as what he accomplished as head coach of USC from 2000-2009.

Carroll's tenure at USC is the subject of Trojan War, the latest documentary from ESPN's critically acclaimed 30 for 30 series, which airs on Tuesday, October 13 at 9 p.m. ET on ESPN.

Directed by Aaron Rahsaan Thomas, the film will explore the glamour, glitz and eventual scandal that characterized the most dominant college football program of the 2000s, with a particular focus on the 2006 Rose Bowl national championship game against Texas, one of the greatest college football games of all time, per

Under Carroll, the Trojans finished in the Associated Press Top Five year after year, put together a 34-game winning streak and won one national championship (2005), with the latter two accomplishments being vacated following the NCAA's investigations into rule violations surrounding Reggie Bush. 

Bush, currently with the San Francisco 49ers, declined to participate in the film despite repeated requests, according to Scott Wolf of the Los Angeles Daily News

Bush reportedly was asked by former USC wide receiver and “Trojan War” producer Keyshawn Johnson “40 times” to participate in the film, which chronicles the Pete Carroll era, including the NCAA violations involving Bush.

Surprisingly, former USC assistant Todd McNair did participate, but did not discuss NCAA violations. McNair is currently suing the NCAA and was a key figure in sanctions. He has not coached since 2009.

With key figures regarding the NCAA violations unwilling to talk, it's perhaps little surprise that this portion of the film suffers, as Awful Announcing's Ben Koo noted in a lukewarm review of the documentary:

The film leaves about ten minutes in the end to look at the fall of the USC dynasty and it’s totally hollow. I wasn’t looking for an HBO Real Sports investigation, but viewers will be left going 'They keep eluding to stuff happening, but I forgot what the deal was.' Trojan War doesn’t mention any of the names of people or companies involved in the scandal....

Regarding Carroll's departure for the NFL ranks around the time of the scandal coming to light and its investigations, former USC running back LenDale White does at least get in one good shot at his former coach.

“He bailed as fast as he possibly could,” White says in the film, per Wolf. “Some guys may not get up here and say that, but I feel that he just left on the university.”

With the scandal relegated to mostly an afterthought, this film might turn out to be an especially fun ride for USC fans, and even nostalgic for Longhorns acolytes looking for something to lift their spirits in this trying season under head coach Charlie Strong.

The Rose Bowl game was a bonkers shootout between two legendary programs. Bush, White, Matt Leinart, Vince Young, Rey Maualuga, Jamaal Charles, Michael Griffin, Aaron Ross, etc.—it was a truly special collection of talent involved in that contest.

Variety's Brian Lowry also notes the film spends plenty of time discussing how Carroll played up the Hollywood vibes in recruiting to USC and the problems that may have created:

The general assessment is that Carroll filled an appetite for showbiz flair in Los Angeles — which had lost its pro football teams — but 'created a monster,' as USC player-turned-broadcaster Petros Papadakis puts it, in terms of turning his players into stars and surrounding them with the trappings of celebrity, with sideline stalwarts like Will Ferrell and Snoop Dogg. 

It will be interesting to see what, if any conclusions the documentary draws about the culture under Carroll and the program's subsequent fall from grace. There are a great many characters worth exploring from that era of Trojan football. 

USC had all the big names and a virtual monopoly on great football in the Southland area with rival UCLA a mediocre outfit for much of that time period. Bush, Leinart and others were truly celebrities. It made for some sublime football. Whether or not it was all in fairness and worth the trouble is a debate that could reignite after the premiere.

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Texas Football: 5 Startling Statistics for the Longhorns Through 6 Weeks

Texas enters its bye as, statistically, one of the more interesting teams in the country.

Following their 24-17 upset of Oklahoma, the Longhorns get a break before they hit the second half of their season. They've certainly earned it, facing off with five Top 25 teams that have put them in a 2-4 hole.

But while Charlie Strong's team has a lot of work to do, it's hung in there. With a chance to get healthy and bring more of the young players up to speed, the Horns should be a pretty fun team to watch down the stretch.

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Laremy Tunsil's Suspension, Return Date Announced by Ole Miss

Ole Miss is off to a 5-1 start, beat Alabama and is ranked No. 13 in the Associated Press Top 25 poll, and it will be much more stout on the offensive line for the season's stretch run.

According to Ole Miss football's official website, the NCAA notified the school Monday that star left tackle Laremy Tunsil received a seven-game suspension and is eligible to return on Oct. 24 for the showdown against Texas A&M. The Rebels have already played six games, which means Tunsil will be back in his spot up front after Saturday’s contest against Memphis.    

Ole Miss withheld Tunsil for the first six games of the season during the NCAA’s investigation into improper benefits. The team’s website described why Tunsil was ultimately suspended:

It was determined by the NCAA that Tunsil received impermissible extra benefits that included the use of three separate loaner vehicles over a sixth-month period without payment, a four-month interest-free promissory note on a $3,000 down payment for purchasing a used vehicle, two nights of lodging at a local home, an airline ticket purchased by a friend of a teammate, and one day use of a rental vehicle.  In addition, it was determined that Tunsil was not completely forthcoming when initially questioned by NCAA investigators regarding the loaner vehicles.  He later corrected his account and since apologized. 

In addition to the suspension, Tunsil must pay back the value of the benefits to a charity, make the down payment on the vehicle and perform community service.

Tunsil released a statement, per the team’s website:

I take full responsibility for the mistakes I made and want to thank everyone for their continued support. I want to apologize to my teammates, coaches and the entire Ole Miss family for how my choices affected our program.  This was a learning experience, and I'm looking forward to being back on the field with my team and redeeming myself.  The last 10 months have been a physical and mental battle for me, but I love playing this game more than anything else.  I want to be here for my teammates who are depending on me to finish what we started together.

The impending return of the left tackle is a major boost for Ole Miss’ SEC championship aspirations.

Dane Brugler of CBS Sports projected Tunsil as the fourth pick in the upcoming draft, and the 6’5”, 305-pound tackle is a physical force as a run-blocker and clears lanes for the team’s playmakers. He is also fairly athletic for his size and able to move laterally as a pass protector.

The timing of Tunsil’s return is ideal for the Rebels as well. They will face Texas A&M, Auburn, Arkansas, LSU and their archrival, Mississippi State, with Tunsil back up front, which will help the offense survive the brutal physicality the SEC brings every week.

Ole Miss is already fifth in the nation with 46.8 points per game without Tunsil. Those numbers may get even better with the star tackle clearing the way up front.

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Steve Spurrier to Retire: Twitter Reacts to Coach's Reported Decision

When one of the most legendary head coaches of his era chooses to step down, it's bound to create quite a buzz on social media. Sports Illustrated's Thayer Evans reported Monday night that South Carolina head coach Steve Spurrier will retire, and he will do so with immediate effect, per the SEC Network.

Spurrier is 70 years old, and the Gamecocks are just 2-4 this season and unlikely to finish with a winning record. Still, his resignation comes as a bit of a surprise if only for the fact that he isn't waiting for the end of the year.

Gamecocks quarterback Connor Mitch appeared shocked by the abrupt nature of the news, tweeting, "Man it's been a crazy day."

Yahoo Sports' Dan Wetzel joked the "Ol' Ball Coach" likely already has plans for his first day of retirement:

Spurrier is unquestionably one of the greatest college coaches of the 1990s and 2000s. Should he truly be done, he'll walk away with a career record of 228-89-2 and one national championship to his name. ESPN Stats & Info put his incredible consistency into perspective:    

NFL Network's Albert Breer added this about Spurrier's overall legacy:

Smart Football's Chris B. Brown provided some highlights from Spurrier's glory days at Florida, which helped shape the future of college football:

Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze was one of many impacted by those dominant Gators teams:

Of course, for as much as Spurrier did on the sidelines, his eccentric personality will be remembered just as fondly. He has always been one of the most entertaining characters in college football, and he knew exactly how to get under the skin of his fellow head coaches.

USA Today's Paul Myerberg and ESPN's Jorge Sedano shared two of Spurrier's more memorable barbs at his SEC foes:

Let this picture of Spurrier visiting an Arby's in 2013 be the lasting image you have of him—at least while he was still a head coach:

College football in general became a lesser spectacle following Spurrier's departure.

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Virginia Tech vs. Miami: Complete Game Preview

The Virginia Tech Hokies (3-3, 1-1) snapped a two-game losing streak and picked up their first ACC win of the season with last week's 28-13 victory over N.C. State. 

Next up for the Hokies: longtime rival Miami (3-2, 0-1). 

The Hurricanes have their own two-game losing streak riding into this weekend's pivotal ACC Coastal Division contest. After beginning the 2015 season 3-0, the 'Canes have lost two in a row to Cincinnati and Florida State.

Miami and Virginia Tech were supposed to be battling it out for Coastal supremacy every season when the two schools joined the ACC back in 2004. However, much to the chagrin of league officials and observers, that hasn't been the case.

The Hokies have represented the division five times in the ACC title game and have won four league titles. Miami has yet to win the Coastal Division.

The Hurricanes lead the all-time series 19-13 and won last year's meeting decisively. The Hokies have won eight of the past 12 meetings between the fierce rivals.

  • When: Saturday, October 17, 2015
  • Where: Sun Life Stadium, Miami Gardens, Florida
  • Time: 3:30 p.m. ET
  • Radio: Virginia Tech IMG Sports Network. Here is a complete list of stations by area
  • Spread: The Hurricanes are presently six-point favorites, via Odds Shark

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