After missing all of one season and most of another due to injuries, Kenny Anunike will see his collegiate career extended by one year thanks to the never-ending benevolence of the NCAA.
In a release, Duke announced that the defensive end has been granted a sixth season of eligibility by the Association. Anunike had previously received a medical hardship waiver from the ACC for a fifth season, which he utilized in 2012.
“I am excited about returning and taking this rare opportunity to play another year at Duke,” Anunike said in a statement. “It is truly great to be a part of this new era of Duke Football. With Coach Cutcliffe, the staff, my teammates and our fans, I believe that coming back will be my contribution in helping take our program to new heights. Go Duke!”
Anunike, who is majoring in biological anthropology and anatomy and is scheduled to graduate from Duke next month, missed all of the 2008 season and all but four games in 2011 because of ACL injuries. All told, the player has undergone four surgical procedures on his left knee since arriving at Duke four years ago.
This season, however, Anunike has been healthy throughout, credited with 36 tackles, six tackles for loss and a team-leading five quarterback sacks.
(Photo credit: Duke athletics)
Navy has seen one of its most productive players on the defensive side of the ball play for perhaps the final time this season.
Kwazel Bertrand sustained a broken ankle in the win over Air Force last Saturday, head coach Ken Niumatalolo confirmed earlier this week. As a result, the defensive back will very likely miss the remainder of the 2015 season.
And, because he is a senior and has no other eligibility avenues to pursue, it would effectively end his collegiate career as well.
“I feel terrible for Kwazel. It’s really unfortunate any time a senior goes down with a season-ending injury,” Niumatalolo said. “Kwazel has been a really good player for us and we’re going to miss his presence out on the field.”
Bertrand started 27 games over the past three-plus seasons, including all four in 2015.
You know how I know we’re gradually creeping up on the end of another regular season? Watch lists are being whittled.
The first major honor to do so is the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award, which is given out annually to the best quarterback who is a college senior or fourth-year junior. The preseason watch list was 30 quarterbacks strong; the newest list has been cut in half to 15.
The most recent list includes one of the top Heisman contenders (TCU’s Trevone Boykin) and the top two nationally in passing yards (Bowling Green’s Matt Johnson, Western Kentucky’s Brandon Doughty), as well as a quarterback who’s closing in on the all-time FBS record for rushing touchdowns (Navy’s Keenan Reynolds).
The Pac-12 leads all conferences with three watch listers, followed by two each from the AAC, ACC and Big Ten. The SEC has as many players (one, Mississippi State’s Dak Prescott) as the FCS (North Dakota State’s Carson Wentz).
Last year’s winner was Marcus Mariota of Oregon.
Trevone Boykin, TCU
Jacoby Brissett, NC State
Connor Cook, Michigan State
Brandon Doughty, WKU
Everett Golson, Florida State
Kevin Hogan, Stanford
Matt Johnson, Bowling Green
Cody Kessler, USC
Paxton Lynch, Memphis
Dak Prescott, Mississippi State
Keenan Reynolds, Navy
Nate Sudfeld, Indiana
Carson Wentz, N. Dakota State
Marquise Williams, North Carolina
Travis Wilson, Utah