Barry Sanders Jr. whittles list of schools to four

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For those in Cowboy Nation hoping for another/the next Barry Sanders to bring his ankle-breaking abilities to Stillwater someday, there’s some good news this morning as a high schooler with a direct genetic link to Barry v1.0 has the school residing on his short for-the-moment list.

Of course, he’s still two years away from hitting a college football field and all the schools that are in the recruiting mix are at the mercy of the changing whims of a teenager, but still, there’s a chance.  A chance at a player whose DNA apparently did not stray far from that of his father’s.

Speaking to OkBlitz.com, Barry Sanders Jr., one of the top high school running backs in the Class of 2012, said he is currently focused on four schools amongst the multitudes who have offered him scholarships.  His father’s alma mater Oklahoma State is one of them, obviously, as well as defending national champion Alabama, UCLA and Florida State.  He’s also received offers from Auburn, Notre Dame, Tennessee and Texas A&M among others.

When it comes to following in his famous father’s collegiate footsteps or striking out on his own path, though, the younger Sanders is getting no pressure from his family to go either way.

“I haven’t really felt much pressure, because my family hasn’t really been pressuring me,” he said. “I think that when people start feeling the pressure, it’s because it’s coming from the family and the people you’re around. But nobody I’m really close with has been pressuring me into it, so I feel like I can go anywhere I want to.”

Sanders will be in Dallas for the Oklahoma-Texas rivalry game, and also intends to take in the Alabama-Ole Miss game Oct. 16.  It appears that Nick Saban and the Tide are putting a very hard sell on Sanders, impressing upon the young man the success of their running backs of late.

“He told me they get a lot of television exposure, and how Ingram winning the Heisman has a lot to do with it, and how their last four freshmen running backs and have gotten some solid playing time,” Sanders said of a conversation with Saban. “That’s very good to hear when you want to play early and make a contribution to the team. He said Tuscaloosa is a great place, and I look forward to going down there to visit.”

Sanders has no timetable for giving a verbal commitment.

Rico McWilliams, 18-game starter at corner for Gamecocks, gives up football

BATON ROUGE, LA - OCTOBER 10:  Malachi Dupre #15 of the LSU Tigers catches a pass in front of Rico McWilliams #1 of the South Carolina Gamecocks during the third quarter of a game at Tiger Stadium on October 10, 2015 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.  (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
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South Carolina has seen one of the most experienced members of its secondary not only leave the program but the sport as well.

Rico McWilliams has decided to leave the Gamecocks and give up football, first-year USC head coach Will Muschamp announced Monday.  No reason was given for the decision.

McWilliams had started 18 the past three seasons, but began to tumble down the depth chart in the spring and failed to gain much ground in summer camp.  He had left camp early on for what were described as personal reasons, but eventually returned.

I am back with the team and have to stay focused,” the cornerback said just three days ago.

As a redshirt junior last season, McWilliams started 10 of USC’s 12 games, the lone exceptions being the contests against Georgia and Texas A&M.  He was credited with 32 tackles, two pass breakups and a fumble recovery.

Additionally, Muschamp announced that redshirt freshman wide receiver Christian Owens had left his team as well.  A three-star 2015 signee, Owens didn’t play as a true freshman.

Jim Harbaugh clarifies comments on Colin Kaepernick anthem controversy

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Via social media, Jim Harbaugh has attempted to walk back some of his strong talk.

Monday, the Michigan head coach was asked to comment on one of his former San Francisco 49er players, Colin Kaepernick, who kicked up quite the controversy this past week by sitting down during the playing of the national anthem to protest what he believes to be the mistreatment of African-Americans in this country. Not surprisingly, the outspoken Harbaugh didn’t mince many words.

“I acknowledge his right to do that, but I don’t respect the motivation or the action,” the coach said.

A short time later, Harbaugh took to Twitter to offer a clarification that he had no issue with Kaepernick’s motivation, merely his methods.

Baylor suspends starting safety Chance Waz for first two games

WACO, TX - SEPTEMBER 12:  Chance Waz #18 of the Baylor Bears at McLane Stadium on September 12, 2015 in Waco, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
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Even as Baylor looks to put a tumultuous offseason in the rearview mirror, the football team simply can’t get away from the dark cloud hanging over the program.

Interim head coach Jim Grobe announced Monday that Chance Waz has been suspended for the Bears’ first two games of the upcoming season.  The only reason given was unspecified disciplinary issues.

The suspension will cost the defensive back games against Northwestern State and SMU.  Waz will be eligible to return for the Sept. 16 game against Rice.

After playing in 11 games as a true freshman in 2014, Waz started 11 of the 13 games in which he played last season.  He was again projected as a starting safety entering summer camp.

Speaking of BU starters, Ishmael Zamora is still listed as a first-team wide receiver on the final preseason depth chart released by the Bears Monday.  Zamora was caught on video beating his dog with a belt and kicking it, and was ultimately charged with misdemeanor animal abuse.

Grobe said he’s still awaiting the university’s decision on what if any punishment Zamora may be facing as a result of the incident.

LB Xavier Preston reportedly suspended for WVU’s opener vs. Mizzou

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The West Virginia football team has had a rough go of it the last month or so.

In late July, Larry Jefferson, expected to be a part of WVU’s defensive line rotation, was arrested on drug charges and removed from the roster.  This in mid-August, two-year starting safety Dravon Askew-Henry sustained a torn ACL that will knock him out for the season; shortly thereafter, starting left guard Adam Pankey was arrested on a drunk-driving charge and ultimately suspended for at least the opener against Missouri.

As it turns out, Pankey won’t be alone on the suspension sidelines as WVMetroNews.com is reporting that linebacker Xavier Preston will be suspended for the opener as well. No reason has been given for the punitive measure, and the football program has yet to confirm it.

The third-year sophomore would be eligible to return for the Sept. 10 Youngstown State game.

Preston played in 13 games last season. He has been described as the heir apparent to Nick Kwiatkowski at outside linebacker for the Mountaineers.