NCAA Football News

Best Offensive Coordinators in College Football

Offense gets all the attention in college football, but actually compiling a list of the best offensive coordinators is actually a tad more complicated than you'd think. Basically, there's not one defined set of responsibilities from one OC to another. Everyone does it a little differently. 

With few exceptions, we try to stay away from the co-offensive coordinator titles as much as possible. This is a common thing in college football, but it's easier to pin down everything when it's one person running the show. Additionally, the tough part about listing offensive coordinators is that so many head coaches, in essence, hold that position. In many instances, the head coach will call the plays while OCs will draw up game plans. 

Some of these things are unavoidable. With that in mind, let's proceed. Selections were made on offensive stats, improvements, accolades and player development.

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Lou Holtz's House Damaged by Fire Likely Caused by Lightning

The Orlando, Florida, home of former college football head coach Lou Holtz suffered significant damage Sunday, likely due to a lightning strike that started a fire.

Yahoo Sports' Dr. Saturday tweeted out a picture of the damage done:

The Orlando Sentinel (via Graham Watson of Yahoo Sports) provided additional details about the house and the fire, noting it took multiple hours to extinguish the blaze. Per Watson, "The home, which is reportedly worth $1.6 million, was engulfed in flames and took 60 Orlando firefighters to fight and more than three hours to extinguish. Two firefighters suffered minor injuries during the blaze, but there were not other reported injuries."

Holtz retired from coaching in 2004 after spending six seasons at South Carolina. In 33 seasons as a college football head coach, the 78-year-old won 249 games and one national championship in 1988 with Notre Dame. He was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame in 2008.

He had been working as an analyst at ESPN since 2004 before leaving the network in April. 

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Derrick Nash, Central Michigan DB, Dies at Age 20

Derrick Nash, a Central Michigan football player who was diagnosed with leukemia, died from the disease at the age of 20 on Monday.

Central Michigan football's official Twitter feed announced the news Monday night:

Central Michigan director of athletics Dave Heeke released a statement about Nash's death, per

This is a very difficult loss for our football program and entire Chippewa Athletic Program. Derrick was an inspiration to us all and the fight he showed will never be forgotten. The incredible courage he exhibited in never allowing this terrible disease to dampen his positive outlook on life, is a tremendous representation of the type of man he was. Our thoughts and prayers are with Derrick's family and friends during this difficult time.

In May 2013, Hugh Bernreuter of spoke to Nash following his diagnosis and about signing his letter of intent to play college football. "Playing Division I football...I never thought I would get the chance, but I was getting the chance," Nash said. "Signing that letter of intent was the greatest moment in my life. It was something I thought would never happen."

CMU's release on its website noted that, after going through treatment, Nash took part in spring practice in 2014 and was set to earn a spot on the roster before doctors found the leukemia had returned.

Nash would never get the chance to play in a game for Central Michigan. He redshirted in 2014 while undergoing further treatment for the disease, though he did get to serve as an honorary captain for the Chippewas in the Bahamas Bowl in December.

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Georgia Bulldogs Fact or Fiction: Will Nick Chubb Lead SEC in Rushing in 2015?

The Georgia Bulldogs are seemingly always in contention in the SEC. Will that be the case in 2015?

Bleacher Report's Stephen Nelson was joined by Bleacher Report's College Football Analyst Barrett Sallee as they played a game of Fact or Fiction.

Where will Georgia finish in 2015? Check out the video and let us know!   

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Top 5 Takeaways from ESPN's Updated Recruiting Rankings

The beauty of 247Sports' composite rankings is that they make shakeups in any of the four major recruiting sites—247Sports,, and—more of a topic of discussion in the college football recruiting world.

When ESPN released its updated ESPN 300 on Monday, a few players were rewarded with a bump in their 247Sports composite rankings.

Here are five takeaways from the new ESPN 300 rankings.


Sterling-Cole continues to impress

ESPN thinks very highly of quarterback Dillon Sterling-Cole—and rightfully so. Once unranked in the ESPN 300, the uncommitted 4-star is now at No. 111 in the latest rankings.

Sterling-Cole's rise since the spring has been very impressive. When he won quarterback MVP honors at The Opening Dallas Regional in March, he was a 3-star player and the No. 27 dual-threat quarterback. He's now the No. 9 pro-style quarterback after showcasing his skills throughout the spring and summer.

All eyes are on Sterling-Cole, who has schools like Texas A&M, Houston, UCLA, Florida and several others on his list. Texas A&M fans are hoping to land him, as he is an Aggie legacy: His father is former Aggie Chris Cole, who went on to play receiver in the NFL for the Denver Broncos.


Major spikes from the defensive front

Nothing helps a player's confidence like watching his rankings escalate emphatically. Four uncommitted, 4-star defensive ends saw a rise of at least 70 spots on Monday.

Brandon Bowen proved to be the biggest winner, as he jumped 190 spots from No. 351 to No. 161. Another triple-digit jumper was Antonneous Clayton, who rose 106 spots from No. 217 to No. 111.

Prince Sammons, a bigger man among big men at 6'8" and 280 pounds, climbed from No. 258 to No. 159, just missing a triple-digit increase in the rankings. Justin Madubuike "only" rose 74 spots but managed to jump into the national top 100, escalating from No. 169 to No. 95.

A fifth defensive end, Georgia 4-star commit Chauncey Manac, rose 75 spots from No. 149 to No. 74.


More news about defensive ends

The new composite rankings feature 22 defensive ends in the top 200, and six of those are in the top 50. Nick Bosa is the nation's No. 2 strong-side defensive end behind 5-star Shavar Manuel, but Bosa, also a 5-star player, rose from No. 31 to No. 8 in the composite rankings. Manuel is at No. 6.

While Bosa cracked the top 10, other defensive ends saw an impressive bump in the composite rankings on Monday. Marlon Davidson, another 5-star defensive end, jumped from No. 53 to No. 22. Florida State 4-star commit Janarius Robinson rose 47 spots from No. 83 to No. 36. McTelvin Agim, a 4-star end and the top-ranked player in Arkansas, went from No. 79 to No. 55.


Geaux-ing for the win

Teams like Florida State, Miami and reigning national champion Ohio State have either double-digit commitments or near-double-digit commitments from the ESPN 300. However, the team to beat currently is LSU.

The Tigers are the top-ranked team in the 247Sports composite recruiting team rankings with 17 commits. Among the members in the ESPN 300 are 5-star cornerback Saivion Smith, 5-star defensive tackle Edwin Alexander, 4-star quarterback Feleipe Franks and 4-star receivers Dee Anderson and Stephen Sullivan.

The good news for LSU is that more commits could be coming. The Tigers are in a solid position to land 5-star studs such as defensive tackle Rashard Lawrence, offensive tackle Willie Allen and safety Brandon Jones.


An interesting race for No. 1

The top two players in the ESPN 300: Rashan Gary and Greg Little.

The top two players in the 247Sports composite: Rashan Gary and Greg Little.

The battle for the top-ranked player in the nation appears to be down to a dynamic, uncommitted, 5-star defensive tackle and a technically sound, 5-star offensive tackle committed to Texas A&M, respectively. Betwen them, the two have nearly 60 reported offers.

The summer and fall, however, will play a key role in who ultimately finishes as the No. 1 player.

Will it be Gary or Little, or will another 5-star prospect overtake them? Quarterback Jacob Eason is the No. 3 player in the 247Sports composite. Defensive tackle Dexter Lawrence, who rose 37 spots from No. 54 to No. 17 in the ESPN 300, is No. 4 in the 247Sports composite.

Next month's The Opening could be a determining factor in who ends up where.


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

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Danny Etling Transferring to LSU Is Great Insurance at QB for Les Miles

Ever since Matt Flynn led LSU to a national title following the 2007 season, the quarterback position—save for Zach Mettenberger's senior year in 2013—has been a wasteland.

Ryan Perrilloux couldn't stay on the field, Andrew Hatch and Jarrett Lee struggled, the Tigers won in spite of Jordan Jefferson and Anthony Jennings wasn't exactly a game-changer in 2014.

Help is on the way, just not immediate help.

According to Greg Ostendorf of, former Purdue quarterback Danny Etling will enroll at LSU this fall, will sit out the 2015 season due to NCAA transfer rules and have two years to play starting in 2016.

He's a tremendous insurance policy for head coach Les Miles and his staff.

Ideally, Miles and offensive coordinator Cam Cameron would like either sophomore Brandon Harris or junior (and recently suspended) Anthony Jennings to evolve into a star this year and hold down the job for at least the next two seasons. 

At this point, though, that might be the college football equivalent of searching for a unicorn, and having Etling waiting in the wings in 2016 will give Miles and his staff some security.

The native of Terre Haute, Indiana, completed 55.5 percent of his passes (239-for-429) during his first two seasons at Purdue, threw 16 touchdowns and tossed 12 picks. The former 4-star prospect in the class of 2013 has a strong arm, can stand tall in the pocket and deliver the ball on time and on the money.

His stats from Purdue don't exactly jump off the page, but that's not the point nor is it all that important.

He's the most accomplished quarterback on the LSU roster right now, and unless Jennings or Harris bucks the trend and is successful in 2015, he will be next year when he's eligible to play.

Plus, Etling might benefit from the talent around him—especially at wide receiver where Malachi Dupre will be a junior when Etling can play, and other wide receivers like D.J. Chark, John Diarse and Tyron Johnson will have plenty of experience under their belts. 

As Barton Simmons of 247Sports notes, he could shine in the pro-style system of Miles and Cameron.

What's more, he'll be the only true pro-style quarterback on the roster in 2016. 

Jennings and Harris are both dual-threats, and the loser of the battle this year has a good chance of leaving before the 2016 season. Justin McMillan signed in the class of 2015 and enrolled early, but he is also a dual-threat. The Tigers have a commitment from 4-star stud Feleipe Franks, but he's also a dual-threat and it's a lot to ask for a true freshman to come in, play and succeed right away in the SEC.

Etling not only provides a solid pro-style option for the staff, but he also can act as a bridge to get from the current situation that's unstable-at-best, to Franks.

Does Etling have the same buzz surrounding his name as Florida State graduate transfer Everett Golson? 

No, of course not.

But he is a solid insurance policy for Miles to have in 2016 and beyond, and he could become a star with LSU's stable of wide receivers at his disposal.


Quotes were obtained firsthand unless otherwise noted. All stats are courtesy of unless otherwise noted, and all recruiting information is courtesy of 247Sports' composite rankings.

Barrett Sallee is the lead SEC college football writer and college football video analyst for Bleacher Report as well as a host on Bleacher Report Radio on Sirius 93, XM 208.

Follow Barrett on Twitter @BarrettSallee.

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