ACC releases 2012 schedule

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Finally, right?

After some delay, the ACC has released its 2012 football schedule. For many ACC teams, conference play gets started right off the bat with Boston College hosting Miami and Georgia Tech going to Virginia Tech on Labor Day weekend.

The defending ACC champ, Clemson, will head to Atlanta to take on Auburn in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Classic, a rematch of the 2007 Chick-fil-A Bowl. The Tigers (of Clemson) also host Virginia Tech on Oct. 20 after sweeping the Hokies last year in ACC play.

Speaking of the Hokies, they’ll travel to Pittsburgh and play future ACC member Pitt on Sept. 15.

Miami will travel to Soldier Field in Chicago to take on Notre Dame on Oct. 6 (Catholics vs. Convicts) for a rematch of 2010’s Sun Bowl, and Maryland will host Randy Edsall‘s former team, UConn, on Sept. 15.

The conference will hold four Thursday night games beginning in late October, starting with Clemson at Wake Forest on the 25th. Other Thursday night games include Virginia Tech at Miami (Nov. 1), Florida State at Virginia Tech (Nov. 8) and North Carolina at Virginia (Nov. 15).

The ACC’s championship game, as it has been in year’s past, will be the first weekend in December on the 1st.

Here’s how each of the 12 ACC schedules shake out:

BOSTON COLLEGE
Sept. 1 MIAMI
Sept. 8 MAINE
Sept. 15 at Northwestern
Sept. 22 OPEN
Sept. 29 CLEMSON
Oct. 6 at Army
Oct. 13 at Florida State
Oct. 20 at Georgia Tech
Oct. 27 MARYLAND
Nov. 3 at Wake Forest
Nov. 10 NOTRE DAME
Nov. 17 VIRGINIA TECH
Nov. 24 at NC State

CLEMSON
Sept. 1 AUBURN (Georgia Dome)
Sept. 8 BALL STATE
Sept. 15 FURMAN
Sept. 22 at Florida State
Sept. 29 at Boston College
Oct. 6 GEORGIA TECH
Oct. 13 OPEN
Oct. 20 VIRGINIA TECH
Oct. 25 at Wake Forest
Nov. 3 at Duke
Nov. 10 MARYLAND
Nov. 17 NC STATE
Nov. 24 SOUTH CAROLINA

DUKE
Sept. 1 FLORIDA INTERNATIONAL
Sept. 8 at Stanford
Sept. 15 NORTH CAROLINA CENTRAL
Sept. 22 MEMPHIS
Sept. 29 at Wake Forest
Oct. 6 VIRGINIA
Oct. 13 at Virginia Tech
Oct. 20 NORTH CAROLINA
Oct. 27 at Florida State
Nov. 3 CLEMSON
Nov. 10 OPEN
Nov. 17 at Georgia Tech
Nov. 24 MIAMI

FLORIDA STATE
Sept. 1 MURRAY STATE
Sept. 8 SAVANNAH STATE
Sept. 15 WAKE FOREST
Sept. 22 CLEMSON
Sept. 29 at South Florida
Oct. 6 at NC State
Oct. 13 BOSTON COLLEGE
Oct. 20 at Miami
Oct. 27 DUKE
Nov. 3 OPEN
Nov. 8 at Virginia Tech
Nov. 17 at Maryland
Nov. 24 FLORIDA

GEORGIA TECH
Sept. 3 at Virginia Tech
Sept. 8 PRESBYTERIAN
Sept. 15 VIRGINIA
Sept. 22 MIAMI
Sept. 29 MIDDLE TENNESSEE
Oct. 6 at Clemson
Oct. 13 OPEN
Oct. 20 BOSTON COLLEGE
Oct. 27 BYU
Nov. 3 at Maryland
Nov. 10 at North Carolina
Nov. 17 DUKE
Nov. 24 at Georgia

MARYLAND
Sept. 1 WILLIAM & MARY
Sept. 8 at Temple
Sept. 15 CONNECTICUT
Sept. 22 at West Virginia
Sept. 29 OPEN
Oct. 6 WAKE FOREST
Oct. 13 at Virginia
Oct. 20 NC STATE
Oct. 27 at Boston College
Nov. 3 GEORGIA TECH
Nov. 10 at Clemson
Nov. 17 FLORIDA STATE
Nov. 24 at North Carolina

MIAMI
Sept. 1 at Boston College
Sept. 8 at Kansas State
Sept. 15 BETHUNE-COOKMAN
Sept. 22 at Georgia Tech
Sept. 29 NC STATE
Oct. 6 at Notre Dame
Solider Field, Chicago, Ill.
Oct. 13 NORTH CAROLINA
Oct. 20 FLORIDA STATE
Oct. 27 OPEN
Nov. 1 VIRGINIA TECH
Nov. 10 at Virginia
Nov. 17 SOUTH FLORIDA
Nov. 24 at Duke

NORTH CAROLINA
Sept. 1 ELON
Sept. 8 at Wake Forest
Sept. 15 at Louisville
Sept. 22 EAST CAROLINA
Sept. 29 IDAHO
Oct. 6 VIRGINIA TECH
Oct. 13 at Miami
Oct. 20 at Duke
Oct. 27 NC STATE
Nov. 3 OPEN
Nov. 10 GEORGIA TECH
Nov. 15 at Virginia
Nov. 24 MARYLAND

NC STATE
Aug. 31 TENNESSEE (Georgia Dome)
Chick-fil-A Kickoff, Atlanta
Sept. 8 at Connecticut
Sept. 15 SOUTH ALABAMA
Sept. 22 THE CITADEL
Sept. 29 at Miami
Oct. 6 FLORIDA STATE
Oct. 13 OPEN
Oct. 20 at Maryland
Oct. 27 at North Carolina
Nov. 3 VIRGINIA
Nov. 10 WAKE FOREST
Nov. 17 at Clemson
Nov. 24 BOSTON COLLEGE

VIRGINIA
Sept. 1 RICHMOND
Sept. 8 PENN STATE
Sept. 15 at Georgia Tech
Sept. 22 at TCU
Sept. 29 LOUISIANA TECH
Oct. 6 at Duke
Oct. 13 MARYLAND
Oct. 20 WAKE FOREST
Oct. 27 OPEN
Nov. 3 at NC State
Nov. 10 MIAMI
Nov. 15 NORTH CAROLINA
Nov. 24 at Virginia Tech

VIRGINIA TECH
Sept. 3 GEORGIA TECH
Sept. 8 AUSTIN PEAY
Sept. 15 at Pittsburgh
Sept. 22 BOWLING GREEN
Sept. 29 at Cincinnati
FedEx Field, Landover, Md.
Oct. 6 at North Carolina
Oct. 13 DUKE
Oct. 20 at Clemson
Oct. 27 OPEN
Nov. 1 at Miami
Nov. 8 FLORIDA STATE
Nov. 17 at Boston College
Nov. 24 VIRGINIA

WAKE FOREST
Sept. 1 LIBERTY
Sept. 8 NORTH CAROLINA
Sept. 15 at Florida State
Sept. 22 ARMY
Sept. 29 DUKE
Oct. 6 at Maryland
Oct. 13 OPEN
Oct. 20 at Virginia
Oct. 25 CLEMSON
Nov. 3 BOSTON COLLEGE
Nov. 10 at NC State
Nov. 17 at Notre Dame
Nov. 24 VANDERBILT

Penn State trustee says he’s ‘running out of patience’ with ‘so-called victims’ of Jerry Sandusky

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With Baylor seemingly running away with the title of most embarrassing university in collegiate athletics, a Penn State trustee has said “hold my beer.”

Friday, former Penn State president Graham Spanier was found guilty on one count of endangering the welfare of children in a trial related to his role in the Jerry Sandusky sex abuse scandal.  In an email to the Chronicle of Higher Education this week, PSU trustee Albert Lord had sharp words for the victims of Sandusky, who was found guilty on 45 of 48 child-sex abuse charges in June of 2012 and is currently serving a sentence of at least 30 years.

“Running out of sympathy for 35 yr old, so-called victims with 7 digit net worth,” the trustee wrote in a portion of the email. “Do not understand why they were so prominent in trial. As you learned, Graham Spanier never knew Sandusky abused anyone.”

Spanier was found not guilty on two other charges, a second count of child endangerment and one count of criminal conspiracy.

In a statement, the chairman of the school’s board of trustees, Ira Lubert, attempted to distance the body from Lord’s comments.

“Al Lord’s comments are personal and do not represent the opinions of the board or the university.”

Sun Belt commish issues statement on Arkansas gun law

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A highly-charged state law continues to garner the attention of the college football world.

Last week, the state of Arkansas legislature passed a law (House Bill 1249) that would allow concealed-carry handguns on publicly-owned property, which would include college sporting events.  A day later, and after realizing, amidst considerable controversy, the potential for alcohol-fueled fans to attend an SEC football game armed, the state’s senate voted to amend the law to exclude college sporting events.

The amendment still must pass through the House of Representatives, leading SEC commissioner Greg Sankey, with the University of Arkansas as a member of his conference, to release a statement Tuesday that was no doubt meant to apply pressure ahead of the vote.  Thursday, the Sun Belt’s commissioner, Karl Benson, followed suit out of concern for his membership, including Arkansas State in football.

During the last week I have followed closely the news articles regarding Arkansas House Bill 1249, and now also a potential amendment to what is now Act 562. Given that both the University of Arkansas at Little Rock and Arkansas State University are members of the Sun Belt Conference — and as my colleague Greg Sankey of the Southeastern Conference has stated — I too support the Arkansas State Senate’s exemption in Senate Bill 724 that would prevent firearms from being allowed inside publicly funded stadiums and arenas in the State of Arkansas.

It’s unclear when the House will vote on the amendment.  Regardless of which version of thew law is finally agreed upon, it will go into effect Sept. 1.

Arkansas opens its 2017 season Sept. 2 against Florida A&M in Fayetteville.  Arkansas State’s home opener is a week later against the Miami (Fla.).

Foot injury could sideline Auburn’s Tashawn Manning for rest of spring

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After kicking cancer’s ass, this latest health issue hardly qualifies as a big deal.  Still, it’s a thing.

Tashawn Manning has been battling an unspecified foot injury of late, which has limited the defensive tackle’s availability for most of the first two-thirds of Auburn’s spring practice sessions.  With just five practices remaining, Manning could very well be sidelined for al of them.

“The problem is this is Day 9 and Saturday will be Day 11, so there’s a probability” that the player will not see the field for what remains of spring practice, Manning’s position coach, Rodney Garner, said according to al.com.

Around Thanksgiving of 2015, Manning, then an Auburn verbal commit, was diagnosed with acute promyelocytic leukemia.  In July of last year, he was finished with chemotherapy and declared cancer-free.

The defensive lineman didn’t play at all last season, instead taking online classes as he built up his strength as well as his weight after losing more than 60 pounds because of the chemo.  In January, he enrolled at AU and, two months later, was cleared to participate in the spring.

Suspended Mich. St. staffer receives one-MONTH contract extension

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A disturbing situation in East Lansing has added a head-scratching twist.

According to ESPN.com, and by way of a Freedom of Information request, Michigan State football staffer Curtis Blackwell was on the receiving end of a one-month contract extension earlier this month.  Blackwell, whose title with the football program is director of college advancement and performance, was set to see his contract expire at the end of this week.

What makes this development noteworthy is that Blackwell has been indefinitely suspended by the Spartans since early February.

Around that time, it was confirmed by the university that three still-unnamed MSU football players had been suspended after allegations of sexual assault were made against them last month.  An unnamed football staffer was suspended at the time as well; that staffer was subsequently identified as Blackwell.

A police investigation, as well as a Title IX probe, into the allegations continue.  Blackwell is not accused of participating in the alleged sexual assault, but rather a non-sexual crime that’s connected to the investigation.

Mark Dantonio hadn’t spoken publicly about the allegations until earlier this week, and the head coach probably would’ve been better served to have kept it that way.