Big 12, ACC QBs pace Unitas Golden Arm Award watch list

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One of the last awards to release its annual preseason watch list has been the Unitas Golden Arm Award… until now, as you may have divined by the headline.

A total of 29 quarterbacks were named to this year’s watch list for the award, which has been handed out every year since 1987.  Last year’s winner was Stanford’s Andrew Luck, and other past winners have included Nebraska’s Tommie Frazier (1995), Tennessee’s Peyton Manning (1997) and Texas’ Colt McCoy (2009).

Just two finalists in the running for the 2011 version of the award are on this year’s watch list — Oklahoma’s Landry Jones and Arkansas’ Tyler Wilson.  Baylor’s replacement for Robert Griffin III, a finalist for the award in 2011, also made the initial cut, with Nick Florence serving as one of the six QBs from Big 12 schools on the list.

That number tied the Big 12 with the ACC for the most among any conference.  The SEC was next with four, followed by the Big Ten and Pac-12 with three apiece.

• Ryan Aplin, Arkansas State
• Matt Barkley, USC
• Tajh Boyd, Clemson
• Alex Carder, Western Michigan
• Derek Carr, Fresno State
• B.J. Daniels, South Florida
• Seth Doege, Texas Tech
• Nick Florence, Baylor
• Mike Glennon, NC State
• Landry Jones, Oklahoma
• Collin Klein, Kansas State
• EJ Manuel, Florida State
• AJ McCarron, Alabama
• Aaron Murray, Georgia
• Ryan Nassib, Syracuse
• Casey Pachall, TCU
• Keith Price, Washington
• Sean Renfree, Duke
• Bryn Renner, North Carolina
• Jordan Rodgers, Vanderbilt
• Denard Robinson, Michigan
• Nathan Scheelhaase, Illinois
• Geno Smith, West Virginia
• Brad Sorensen, So. Utah
• Tyler Tettleton, Ohio
• Logan Thomas, Virginia Tech
• Jeff Tuel, Washington State
• James Vandenberg, Iowa
• Tyler Wilson, Arkansas

(Photo credit: Unitas Golden Arm Award)

Beer sales approved for Marshall home football games

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Let the beer taps start flowing at the next home Marshall football game. The University announced today that beer sales at Joan C. Edwards Stadium have been approved by the Board of Governors starting this fall.

This is the latest decision in an evolving stance on alcohol sales at Marshall. Last year, the school began expanding the sale of alcoholic beverages such as beer and wine from the Big Green Room to chairback seating. Now, the majority of fans attending a football game in Huntington will be able to purchase alcohol. The expanded alcohol sales plan will help to build the infrastructure of Marshall’s facilities moving forward.

“This is a continuation of our goal to provide more amenities for our fan base that makes attending Marshall Football games a more enjoyable experience,” Director of Athletics Mike Hamrick said in a released statement. “We have played a lot of winning football in our stadium over the past five years and we have great opponents such as Pittsburgh, Boise State, North Carolina State, and Navy just to name a few over the next five years, and it is imperative that the investment in our fan experience matches our football brand.”

Marshall will keep some sections of the football stadium free of alcohol for those fans who wish not to be near the booze-loaded fans.

The announcement was coupled with some other stadium news regarding the future renovation plans for the football stadium.  Construction on the west side of the stadium should be completed by August, in time for the start of the 2017 college football season. The southwest side of the stadium will have a new retail location for fans.

Suspended Oklahoma DB Will Sunderland turns himself in for felony burglarly charge

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Days after an arrest warrant was issued, Oklahoma defensive back Will Sunderland turned himself over to authorities. According to The Oklahoman, Sunderland turned himself in on Tuesday and has since been released after posting a bond of $5,000. He was charged with second-degree burglary, a felony.

Sunderland will have to appear in court at a date to be determined. In the meantime, he remains suspended from the Sooners and all football activities under new head coach Lincoln Riley.

According to previous reports, Sunderland is accused of selling an XBox One and PlayStation 4, accessories and games to an electronics store in Oklahoma City for nearly $500. The merchandise reportedly was stolen from an Oklahoma dorm in March and sold later the same day.

Sunderland previously turned himself in for the misdemeanor charge for the stolen property. He does have a court date scheduled for the misdemeanor charge of possessing stolen property set for July 20.

Notre Dame to travel to Northwestern for first time in 40 years in 2018

AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh
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When news hit that Northwestern was going to host Notre Dame for a football game, you can be excused for automatically thinking the game would be transplanted to Soldier Field in Chicago. But the Wildcats will get the chance to entertain the Fighting Irish in Evanston for the first time in 40 years when Notre Dame comes to Northwestern’s campus in 2018.

Northwestern is scheduled to host Notre Dame on November 3, 2018, as locked in and confirmed by Northwestern’s 2018 schedule today. the last time Notre Dame played at Northwestern was in 1976. There have been five meetings between the two schools since, including two games played in Chicago. Notre Dame’s last win against Northwestern was in 1994, in Chicago.

For the Wildcats, it should be a loaded home schedule in 2018 that also includes home games against Duke from the ACC, division foes Wisconsin and Nebraska, in-state rival Illinois, and Michigan.

Northwestern has a two-game winning streak in the series with Notre Dame, including a 43-40 overtime victory in South Bend, Indiana in 2014.

Texas Tech gets commitment from ex-Arkansas WR Jojo Robinson

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JoJo Robinson‘s winding college football road will apparently take him next to Lubbock.

Using his Twitter account as a microphone, Robinson announced that, “with a lot of prayer and support,” he has decided to continue his playing career at Texas Tech.  The wide receiver had spent the 2016 season at a junior college, thus making him eligible to play immediately in 2017.

Including this season, Robinson will have two years of eligibility remaining.

Originally a Florida State verbal, Robinson ultimately flipped to Arkansas to become a four-star member of the Razorbacks’ 2014 recruiting class. He was suspended for one game his first season in Fayetteville after he was arrested for armed robbery after signing with UA; that charge was ultimately dropped.

In 2015, Robinson was dismissed by head coach Bret Bielema, reportedly for not going to class. Prior to that dismissal, he caught six passes for 53 yards as a redshirt freshman.

The Red Raiders had lost at least two wide receivers to transfer this offseason, including their top pass-catcher, Jonathan Giles, in late April.  Tech’s leader in receptions (69), receiving yards (1,158), receiving touchdowns (13) and yards per catch (16.8) last season ultimately opted for LSU a month later.

In early May, Tony Brown announced his decision to transfer as well.  Earlier this month, he revealed that he would be moving on to Colorado.