Former Clemson WR Brian Wofford killed in accident

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The extended Clemson football family has suffered a loss as a former standout wide receiver was killed this past week.

First reported by multiple media outlets, the university confirmed via a press release that Brian Wofford died Friday morning after the motorcycle that he was driving was hit by an automobile at an intersection in the city of Moore, SC.  The accident occurred at approximately 11:15 local time and Wofford, who was wearing a helmet the release stated, died at the scene.

From OrangeAndWhite.com:

According to the S.C. Highway Patrol, Wofford was riding his 2008 Yamaha motorcycle west on Reidville Road when a 2003 Saturn driven by 20-year-old Jewell Cote of Pacolet attempted to turn right onto Reidville Road from Plateau Street, entering the road in the motorcycle’s path.

Cote was not injured in the wreck.  The accident remains under investigation.

Wofford played for the Tigers from 1996-99 and had 138 receptions for 1,857 yards and 13 touchdowns over his career.   He still ranks 10th in school history in receptions, ninth in reception yards and is tied for eighth in school history in touchdown receptions.

His 147 yards receiving in the 1999 Chick-fil-A Bowl remains a postseason record for the school.

His coach his senior year was Tommy Bowden, who released a statement through the school on his former player’s death.

“When you come to a new program you look to players who will set a standard of excellence and will bind your team together. Brian was one of those players in my first year.

“He was top notch in every area. He was a terrific student, a hard worker during practice, a leader…he was everything college athletics is all about from a positive standpoint. He represented our football program, our university and his family with great distinction.

“One thing I remember about Brian was how happy he was when he heard what our offense was all about. He knew he would get a lot of opportunities as a receiver in our offense and he made the most of it.”

At the time of his death, the 34-year-old Wofford was the head of the Spartanburg city parks system.

Our thoughts, prayers and condolences go out to Wofford’s family and friends during this heartbreaking time.

(Photo credit: Clemson athletics)

Illinois boots three players charged with home invasion and robbery

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Illinois head coach Lovie Smith has dismissed three players charged with home invasion and robbery. Offensive linemen Darta Lee and Howard Watkins and tight end Zarrian Holcombe have all been dismissed from the program, according to a statement.

Lee and Holcombe were previously suspended by Smith for violations of team rules. Watkins had also been indefinitely suspended following the initial allegations. All three players claimed the incident that led to the charges was nothing more than an innocent prank, but the authorities and Smith didn’t seem willing to buy that claim.

Each player faces a mandatory prison sentence of 4-15 years on each count against them if found guilty.

Report: Conference USA to air at least 15 football games on Twitter in 2017

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Conference USA is in a position where it needs to think outside the box and look to stay ahead of the curve in a changing TV landscape. It appears to be ready to air games on Twitter in 2017.

A report from The Virginian-Pilot says broadcast company STADIUM will air at least 15 football games involving Conference USA teams this fall. STADIUM is the result of a recent merger between the American Sports Network, 120 Sports and Silver Chalice (which also owns Campus Insiders and the online ACC Digital Network). The ASN had owned the broadcast rights to Conference USA games through the end of the 2017-2018 sports season that will carry over to the STADIUM deal (allowing for Conference USA basketball games to be aired on Twitter as well). It was announced earlier this month STADIUM intended to broadcast Conference USA games on Twitter, but it was unknown how many games might make it to the networking service. STADIUM reportedly has an interest in continuing to air Conference USA contests beyond the next athletic season.

Conference USA still has broadcast deals with ESPN and CBS Sports in effect as well, so don’t expect the premiere matchups in the conference to be aired on Twitter. However, by sharing the games online, Conference USA is hoping to reach a wide-spread audience and have the opportunity to be a trending topic. It could work, as Twitter would make sure the game is given a steady feed to allow for a pleasant viewing experience and fan interaction in real time.

Conference USA saw TV revenue take a big hit over the last year. Last summer, Conference USA’s television revenue reportedly dropped to just $2.8 million for the entire conference following realignment changes. Finding a home on a streaming platform now would be key for the conference’s future stability.

Alabama DC Jeremy Pruitt named son after former Tide linebackers Reuben Foster and Ryan Anderson

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It is not at all uncommon for children born in the state of Alabama to be named after Alabama football legends, but it is not every day you see a child of an Alabama coach receives a name inspired by former Alabama football players.

Defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt announced the birth of his new son, Flynt Anderson-Foster Pruitt, on Twitter. Alabama fans will likely already know the connection to the new child’s name, as used the last names of two former Alabama football players to create the middle name of Anderson-Foster; Ryan Anderson and Reuben Foster.

Maybe this is more common than I’m aware of, but regardless of how often a coach names a child after former players, this is a testament to the relationship the Pruitt family established with both former Alabama linebackers. And now there will be a bond for years to come between the coach and his family and Anderson and Foster.

Helmet sticker to Al.com.

Wisconsin’s season tickets for 100th anniversary of Camp Randall are a thing of beauty

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The Wisconsin Badgers are gearing up for their 100th season playing home football game sin Camp Randall Stadium. As part of the season-long celebration, Wisconsin put some brilliant artistic detail into their season tickets for the 2017 season.

Each ticket to a home Wisconsin game is designed like a retro-style program. These are beautifully done and mimic the style of a program cover from decades past. I’m particularly fond of the program cover for the Purdue game, which features Wisconsin’s Bucky floating in space with a ship with the Purdue logo nearby. Is that a space train? The Band Day program for the game against Florida Atlantic also looks fantastic.

These tickets will surely be must-have collectibles for Wisconsin fans. If Wisconsin wants to make a few extra bucks, then blowing up these images and selling them as posters may be a good decision as well. And I wouldn’t put it past Wisconsin to suit up in a retro-style uniform for at least home game this season in Madison.