And the early Christmas scheduling gifts for college football fans continue rolling in this afternoon.
Earlier today, Ben noted that an agreement in principle had been reached to renew the storied Nebraska-Oklahoma rivalry next decade. Around that same time, a series featuring schools from the Big Ten and SEC will kick off as well.
In a press release, Arkansas announced that it had reached an agreement on a future home-and-home series with Michigan. The Wolverines subsequently confirmed the news in their own release.
The Razorbacks will travel to Ann Arbor in 2018, while the Wolverines will make the trek to Fayetteville the following season.
“We are pleased to be able to add the University of Michigan to our football schedules for the 2018 and 2019 seasons,” UA athletic director Jeff Long said in a statement. “The home and home series will feature matchups between two tradition rich programs representing two outstanding conferences. As a program, we will continue to look for opportunities to schedule high-profile non-conference opponents to further enhance our national profile and complement our competitive Southeastern Conference schedule.”
The 2018 game will mark just the second time the two schools have squared off in football. Following the 1998 regular season, Michigan dropped Arkansas 45-31 in the Citrus Bowl, now known as the Capital One Bowl.
In addition to the series with UA, UM announced the completion of its 2015 and 2016 schedules. The Wolverines added a one-off game against BYU in the former year, and single games against Hawaii, Miami (Ohio) and Ball State the latter.
One of the more underrated storylines heading into Week 6 continued its tack of uncertainty Tuesday.
During the first quarter of Florida State’s win over Wake Forest this past Saturday, Dalvin Cook tweaked his hamstring and didn’t return to the contest. The sophomore running back was initially labeled as day-to-day for this weekend’s game against Miami, and that hasn’t changed as Jimbo Fisher reaffirmed that Cook’s status for the in-state rivalry game remains up in the air.
“We’ll keep waiting,” the head coach said, adding that, because of Cook’s knowledge of the offense, he could sit out of practice the entire week and still take the field against the Hurricanes.
“He knows what to do, you can keep him healthy and do that there’s no doubt about that,” Fisher said.
Cook is far and away FSU’s leading rusher, with his 142.5 yards per game good for eight in the country and his six rushing touchdowns tied for 20th. The Seminoles’ No. 2 rusher, Mario Pender, is still dealing with the aftereffects of a collapsed lung that will sideline him for at least another week.
Oklahoma State’s defense has taken what will likely prove to be a very significant and impactful blow.
On Twitter as well as Instagram late Tuesday night, Ryan Simmons announced that he “recently tore my MCL & PCL which will require surgery.” As a result, Simmons, who was injured in the Week 5 win over Kansas State, will miss the remainder of the 2015 season, even as OSU has yet to officially confirm the linebacker’s status moving forward.
Because Simmons is a senior, and this is his final season of eligibility, the end of his 2015 season would also mean the end of his collegiate career.
Simmons has started the last 31 games for the Cowboys. He was second on the team in tackles last season, and his 26 career tackles for loss makes him OSU’s active leader in that category as well.
On his official bio, it’s written that Simmons is “[o]ne of the unquestioned leaders of the team, both on and off the field.”