There have been many a surprise when it comes to the latest round of underclassmen declarations, but this one, much to the delight of the Arizona State coaching staff, may top them all.
At a press conference Tuesday evening, standout defensive tackle Will Sutton stunned many by announcing he was eschewing an early shot at the NFL draft and will instead return to the Sun Devils for his senior season. The talented lineman said that he made up his mind earlier today to return because he had goals at the collegiate level he had yet to reach.
Sutton’s decision to return is a huge boon for the Sun Devils.
Despite missing one game with an injury, Sutton was tied for third in the nation in sacks (13) and tied for second in tackles for loss. In both cases, one of the players he was tied with was South Carolina’s Jadeveon Clowney. Following the season, he was named the Pac-12’s Defensive Player of the Year and a consensus All-American, one of just four defensive lineman afforded the latter honor.
Had Sutton decided to make himself available for the draft, he would’ve been a lock for selection in the first round.
D’haquille Williams may have some additional explaining to do to NFL personnel if another report is accurate.
Monday night, Auburn announced that the star wide receiver had been dismissed from Gus Malzahn‘s football program. A day later, reports surfaced that Williams’ dismissal came after he went on a weekend “bar rampage” following one of his friends getting the heave-ho from a local drinking establishment over a dress-code issue. It was alleged that Williams had punched a pair of security guards, a bartender’s assistant and an unnamed patron of the bar.
The unnamed, however, now has a name.
According to the ABC affiliate in Montgomery, Ala., and a citing a source close to the AU program, Tigers center Xavier Dampeer‘s jaw was on the receiving end of one of Williams’ alleged punches. The website wrote that “Dampeer has been treated and released from East Alabama Medical Center, according to a worker at the hospital.”
Malzahn was asked Tuesday if any other Tiger players were involved in the incident. “I’m not going to get into any details,” the coach said according to al.com.
No charges have been filed in connection to the incident.
“We cannot file charges until the injured person(s) comes forward,” Auburn police chief Paul Register told the television station. “Unless an officer personally sees a fight, no arrests can be made.”
If Illinois is going to improve upon its solid 4-1 start to the 2015 season, it’ll have to do so without a significant cog in its offensive machinery.
On the official injury report release Thursday night, the Illini confirmed that Josh Ferguson has been ruled out of Saturday’s game against No. 22 Iowa. The decision is not exactly a surprise as Ferguson has been doubtful in the run-up to the road game against the Hawkeyes.
Ferguson sustained an injury to his right shoulder in the first quarter of last Saturday’s last-second win over Nebraska, and has been unable to practice at all this week.
Ferguson’s 381 rushing yards, three rushing touchdowns and 5.4 yards per carry are all tops on the team. He’s added 12 receptions for 28 yards and another touchdown coming out of the backfield.
With Ferguson sidelined, the bulk of the running-game load is expected to shift to Ke’Shawn Vaughn. Through five games, Vaughn is second on the Illini with 325 yards and a pair of touchdowns.