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2013 Georgia football signees

Mark Richt AP

(Below are the bios released by Georgia on the new members of its 2013 recruiting class.)

JOHNATHAN ATKINS
DL, 6-4, 305
Thomson, Ga., Thomson HS
Hargrave Military Academy (Va.)

JOHNATHAN ATKINS…Born: December 21, 1992…Enrolled at UGA in January, 2013…Fox Sports NEXT three-star prospect, #23 DT in the country…DawgPost #23 overall prospect in Georgia…Enrolled at UGA in January, 2013…Prep School: Hargrave Military Academy…Finished the 2012 season with 42 total tackles, 2 sacks, 5 tackles for loss and one blocked kick…Hargrave Military Academy Head Coach: Troy Davis.

High School: Thomson…SuperPrep All-Dixie Team…Scout.com three-star player, #23 DT nationally, #23 overall prospect in Georgia…Rivals.com three-star player, #40 DT nationally, #52 overall prospect in Georgia…ESPNU four-star player, #11 DT nationally, #119 overall prospect nationally, #55 overall prospect regionally, #12 overall prospect in Georgia…#122 in the ESPNU Top 150…247sports.com four-star player, #17 DT nationally, #16 overall prospect in Georgia…Participated in the 2012 Under Armour All-American game…High School Coach: Milan Turner.

DAVIN BELLAMY
DL, 6-5, 235
Chamblee, Ga., Chamblee HS

DAVIN BELLAMY… Born: Dec. 27, 1994….High School: Chamblee… PrepStar All-Southeast Region….Fox Sports NEXT four-star prospect, #27 defensive end, #233 overall prospect nationally… Dawg Post rates Bellamy the #4 DE and #20 overall prospect in Georgia… Rivals.com three-star prospect, #25 defensive end in the country and #54 overall in Georgia… ESPN.com four-star recruit, #25 defensive end, #30 overall in Georgia and #299 overall nationally… 247Sports.com three-star recruit, #21 defensive end in the country, #31 overall player in Georgia… As a junior Bellamy recorded 10 tackles for loss and five sacks… Played injured through much of his senior season but managed to post five sacks…High School Coach: Allen Johnson.

PARIS BOSTICK
DB, 6-1, 217
Tampa, Fla., Plant HS

PARIS BOSTICK…Born: July 10, 1995 …High School: Plant…PrepStar All-Southeast Region…Fox Sports NEXT three-star prospect, #34 safety in the country…Rivals.com three-star player, #40 S in the country, #85 player in Florida…ESPN Three-star player, #54 S in the country, #418 player in the Region, #153 player in the state…247sports.com three-star player, #86 player in Florida, #45 safety in the country…Ranked as the 18th best prospect in Tampa Bay by the Tampa Bay Times…averaged 9.1 tackles per game during his senior season…High School Coach: Robert Weiner.

AULDEN BYNUM
OL, 6-5, 270
Valdosta, Ga., Valwood HS

AULDEN BYNUM…Born: September 14, 1994…Graduated early and enrolled at UGA in January, 2013…High School: Valwood…PrepStar All-Southeast Region…Fox Sports NEXT three-star prospect, #65 OT in the country…Dawg Post #7 OT and #69 overall prospect in Georgia …Rivals.com three-star player, #40 OT nationally, #38 overall prospect in Georgia…ESPN.com three-star player, #47 OT nationally, #55 overall prospect in Georgia…247Sports three-star player, #39 OT nationally, #53 overall prospect in Georgia…Helped lead Valwood to a 14-0 record during his senior season…High School Coach: Ashley Henderson.

JOSH CARDIELLO
OL, 6-3, 283
Buford, Ga., Buford HS

JOSH CARDIELLO…Born: March 24, 1995…Graduated early and enrolled at UGA in January, 2013…High School: Buford… PrepStar All-Southeast Region…Fox Sports NEXT three-star prospect, #5 center in the country…Dawg Post #1 C and #30 overall prospect in Georgia…Rivals.com three-star prospect, #22 C nationally, #35 overall prospect in Georgia…ESPN.com four-star prospect, #19 C nationally, #37 overall prospect in Georgia…247sports.com threer-star player, #25 OG in the country, #41 player in Georgia…2012 Atlanta Journal-Constitution Class AAA All-State Team…2012 Georgia Sports Writers Association Class AAA First Team All-State…2011 Georgia Sports Writers Association Class AAA Second Team All-State…Helped lead Buford to three straight GHSA State Championships, winning the title in 2010 and 2012…Also played on defensive line…High School Coach: Jess Simpson.

REGGIE CARTER
LB, 6-1, 225
Snellville, Ga., South Gwinnett HS

REGGIE CARTER…Born: September 20, 1994…Graduated early and enrolled at UGA in January, 2013…High School: South Gwinnett…PrepStar All-Southeast Region…Rivals.com and Scout.com four-star recruit…Named to the 2012 Georgia Sports Writers Association All-State Class AAAAAA first-team defense…Selected to the 2012 Atlanta Journal-Constitution Class AAAAAA All-State defense…Fox Sports NEXT four-star prospect, #9 MLB and #195 overall prospect in the country…Dawg Post #1 MLB and #16 overall prospect in Georgia….Ranked as #15 linebacker in the country and No. 22 overall prospect in the state of Georgia by Rivals.com…247sports.com three-star player, #23 ILB in the country, #33 player in Georgia… ESPN three-star player, #32 ILB in the country, #57 player in the state…High School: Coach: John Small.

JORDAN DAVIS
TE, 6-4, 225
Thomson, Ga., Thomson HS

JORDAN DAVIS…Born: March 10, 1995…High School: Thomson…PrepStar All-Southeast Region…Rivals.com three-star prospect, #19 TE nationally, #33 ranked player in the state of Georgia…Fox Sports NEXT three-star prospect, #15 TE in the country…Dawg Post #1 TE and #32 overall prospect in Georgia …247sports.com three-star prospect, #13 TE nationally, #30 ranked player in the state of Georgia…ESPN.com three-star prospect, #15 TE nationally, #85 ranked player in the state of Georgia …2012 All-CSRA…2011 Augusta Chronicle Second Team All-Area…Helped Thomson to a 12-1 record in 2012, making it to the Class AAA State Quarterfinals where they lost to Cartersville 21-13…Recorded seven catches for 102 yards and a touchdown during his senior season for Thomson…High School Coach: Milan Turner.

REGGIE DAVIS
WR, 6-0, 159
Tallahassee, Fla., Lincoln

REGGIE DAVIS…Born: November 22, 1995…High School: Lincoln…Rivals.com four-star prospect, #27 WR nationally, #36 ranked player in the state of Florida, #230 overall prospect nationally… Fox Sports NEXT three-star prospect, #110 WR in the country…247sports.com three-star prospect, #74 WR nationally, #85 ranked player in the state of Florida…ESPN.com four-star prospect, #45 WR nationally, #52 ranked player in the state of Florida, #293 overall prospect nationally…Nominated for the Army All-American game…Holds Lincoln’s record for most receiving touchdowns in a game with three…Helped lead Lincoln to a 12-2 season in his senior campaign that ended with a 41-25 loss to St. Thomas Aquinas in the Class 7A State Championship…Recorded 32 catches for 486 yards and four touchdowns during his senior season, as well as 13 carries for 85 yards and a touchdown…Also ran track at Lincoln and helped lead the Trojans 4×100 relay team to a State Championship in 2012…High School: Yusuf Shakir.

BRENDAN DOUGLAS
RB, 5-11, 202
Augusta, Ga., Aquinas HS

BRENDAN DOUGLAS…Born: July 14, 1994…High School: Aquinas…Scout.com two-star prospect…Rivals.com three-star prospect, #5 FB nationally…ESPN.com three-star prospect, #4 FB nationally, #148 overall prospect in Georgia…247Sports two-star prospect, #13 FB nationally, #174 overall prospect in Georgia…2011 and 2012 Atlanta Journal-Constitution Class A All-State, 2011 Offensive Player of the Year…2012 Georgia Sports Writers Association Class A First Team All-State…Rushed for 1,424 yards and 22 touchdowns as a senior, following a 1,569-yard, 27-touchdown junior campaign…Also played linebacker on defense…High school coach: Matt LeZotte.

LEONARD FLOYD
LB, 6-4, 220
Eastman, Ga., Dodge County HS
Hargrave Military Academy (VA)

LEONARD FLOYD…Born: September 8, 1992…Prep School: Hargrave Military Academy…Rivals.com four-star prospect…247sports.com four-star prospect, #4 overall prep school prospect nationally, #4 ranked player in the state of Virginia…Fox Sports NEXT four-star prospect, #18 DE and #142 overall prospect in the country…Dawg Post #11 overall prospect in Georgia …Helped lead Hargrave to a 7-3 record in 2012…High School: Dodge County …SuperPrep All-Dixie Team…Scout.com four-star prospect, #18 DE nationally, #142 overall prospect nationally, #11 player in the state…Rivals.com four-star prospect, #13 DE nationally, #177 overall prospect nationally, #12 overall prospect in Georgia…ESPN.com four-star prospect, #28 DE nationally…247Sports four-star prospect, #123 ranked overall player nationally, #10 ranked OLB nationally, #11 ranked overall player in Georgia …Atlanta Journal-Constitution Class AA All-State Team…Georgia Sports Writers Association Class AA All-State first team…As a junior recorded 81 tackles, including 14 for a loss and six sacks, as well as 549 receiving yards and three touchdowns at tight end…High School Coach: Rex Hodges.

SHAQUILLE FLUKER
DB, 6-1, 192
Meridian, Miss., East Mississippi CC

SHAQUILLE FLUKER…Born: February 5, 1992…Junior College: East Mississippi CC… PrepStar All-Southeast Region…247Sports four-star prospect, #28 JUCO prospect nationally, #2 S nationally, #11 overall prospect in Mississippi…ESPN.com four-star prospect, #36 JUCO prospect nationally… Fox Sports NEXT three-star prospect….2012 NJCAA Honorable Mention All-American…Helped lead EMCC to its first-ever NJCAA National Championship in 2011…Recorded 106 tackles and seven interceptions through two seasons for EMCC…Junior College Coach: Buddy Stephens.

High School: Meridian…Rivals.com three-star prospect…MaxPreps #136 prospect nationally, #3 prospect in Mississippi…2010 Mississippi/Alabama All-Star Game selection…2010 Mississippi Association of Coaches 6A First Team All-State…2010 Clarion Ledger Second Team All-State…Helped lead Meridian to 2010 6A State Runner Up finish…High School Coach: Larry Weems.

J.J. GREEN
ATH, 5-8, 171
Kingsland, Ga., Camden County HS

J.J GREEN…Born: June 22, 1995… Graduated early and enrolled at UGA in January, 2013…High School: Camden County… … PrepStar All-Southeast Region…Member of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution 2012 Super 11 and Class AAAAAA All-State first team…Named to 2012 Georgia Sports Writers Association All-State Class AAAAAA First-team offense…Fox Sports NEXT three-star prospect, #72 CB in the country…Dawg Post #5 CB and #80 overall prospect in Georgia…#50 ranked Athlete in the country and #47 prospect in the state of Georgia by Rivals…247sports.com three-star player, #30 CB in the country, #27 player in Georgia…ESPN three-star prospect ranked #32 LB in the country and #57 ranked prospect in Georgia….High School teammate of QB Brice Ramsey…Helped lead Camden County to the quarter-finals of the GHSA play-offs where they lost to eventual state champion Norcross…Recorded 39 tackles, 3 interceptions, 1 sack, 919 rushing yards and 16 total touchdowns his senior season of high school…High School Coach: Jeff Heron.

DE’ANDRE JOHNSON
DL, 6-3, 311
Newnan, Ga., Northgate HS

DE’ANDRE JOHNSON…Born: September 4, 1994…High School: Northgate… PrepStar All-Southeast Region…Fox Sports NEXT three-star prospect, #52 DT in the country…Dawg Post #4 DT and #55 overall prospect in Georgia …Rivals.com three-star prospect, #41 overall prospect in Georgia…ESPN.com three-star prospect, #84 DT nationally, #120 overall prospect in Georgia…247Sports three-star prospect, #31 DT nationally, #38 overall prospect in Georgia…2012 Georgia Sports Writers Association Class 5A Second Team All-State…2012 Score Atlanta Final 50 selection…Also competed on track and field team as shot putter…High School Coach: Tommy Walburn.

KENNAR JOHNSON
DB, 6-2 185
Perkinston, Miss., Gulf Coast (Miss.) C.C.

KENNAR JOHNSON… Born: December 18, 1992… Junior College: Gulf Coast (Miss.) CC…Rivals.com three-star prospect, #94 among JUCO prospects nationally…247sports.com three-star recruit, #133 among JUCO prospects, #10 ranked JUCO CB…Fox Sports NEXT three-star prospect…In 2012 he recorded 34 tackles and three pass break-ups…As a freshman he played for Reedley College in Reedley, Calif., he later transferred to Gulf Coast (Miss.) CC for the 2012 campaign…Gulf Coast (Miss.) CC Head Coach: Steven Campbell.

High School: East Ridge HS…Honorable Mention for Orlando Sentinel’s Central Florida Super60…As a senior he recorded 92 tackles, five interceptions, three forced fumbles, eight pass break-ups and one defensive touchdown…Competed in long jump and 4×100 relay on the track and field team…High School Head Coach: Bud O’Hara.

RICO JOHNSON
WR, 5-11, 172
Swainsboro, Ga., Swainsboro HS

RICO JOHNSON…Born: February 23, 1994…High School: Swainsboro…PrepStar All-Southeast Region… Fox Sports NEXT three-star prospect, #57 WR in the country…Dawg Post #3 WR and #61 overall prospect in Georgia …Rivals.com three-star prospect, #53 overall prospect in Georgia…ESPN.com three-star prospect, #122 WR nationally, #93 overall prospect in Georgia…247Sports four-star prospect, #42 WR nationally, #24 overall prospect in Georgia…2012 Georgia Athletic Coaches Association North-South All-Star Game selection…Also competed as sprinter on track and field team, taking first in the 100-meter dash at the 2012 GHSA State Track Championships…High School Coach: David Johnson.

TIM KIMBROUGH
LB, 6-0, 228
Indianapolis, Ind., Warren Central HS

TIM KIMBROUGH…Born: October 29, 1994…High School: Warren Central…PrepStar All-America Team… Fox Sports NEXT four-star player, #5 ILB and #93 overall prospect in the nation, #2 overall prospect in Indiana…Rivals.com four-star player, #3 overall prospect in Indiana, #150 overall prospect nationally…ESPN.com four-star player, #11 ILB nationally, #5 overall prospect in Indiana, #34 overall prospect regionally…247sports.com four-star player, #10 ILB in the country, #4 player in Indiana, #217 in 247Sports Top247…Selected to participate in the 2013 Army Bowl…Named to the 2012 MaxPreps All-American Football Team…Indianapolis Star Indiana Mr. Football runner-up in 2012…Named the Indianapolis Star Super Team Player of the Year…Had 90 solo tackles, 43 assisted tackles, 12 tackles for loss, four sacks, eight quarterback pressures, four forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries during his senior season in 2012…Extremely strong and possesses great closing speed…Excellent speed to the sidelines…High School Coach: Steve Tutsie.

BRANDON KUBLANOW
OL, 6-3, 290
Marietta, Ga., Walton HS

BRANDON KUBLANOW…Born: April 5, 1995…High School: Walton…PrepStar All-America Team… Fox Sports NEXT four-star prospect, 11 OG and #256 overall prospect in the country…Dawg Post #1 OG and #21 overall prospect in Georgia…Rivals.com four-star player, #2 center nationally, #15 overall prospect in Georgia, #155 overall prospect nationally…ESPN.com four-star player, #2 center nationally, #15 overall prospect in Georgia, #69 overall prospect regionally…247sports.com four-star player, #5 center in the country, #21 player in Georgia….Atlanta Journal-Constitution Super 11 and Class AAAAAA All-State first team….Georgia Sports Writers Association All-State first team…Also played defensive tackle at Walton…High School Coach: Rocky Hidalgo.

BRENDAN LANGLEY
DB, 6-1, 181
Marietta, Ga., Kell HS

BRENDAN LANGLEY…Born: October 16, 1994…High School: Kell…PrepStar All-America Team…The Marietta Daily Journal Cobb Defensive Player of the Year…2012 Offense-Defense All-American Bowl… Fox Sports NEXT four-star prospect, 19 CB and #173 overall prospect in the country…Dawg Post #2 CB and #14 overall prospect in Georgia… Rivals.com four-star recruit, #22 CB nationally, #227 overall prospect nationally, #17 overall prospect in Georgia…ESPN.com four-star recruit, #24 CB nationally, #26 overall prospect in Georgia…247sports.com four-star player, #15 CB in the country, #16 player in Georgia, #181 in 247Sports Top247…As a senior he had 60 total tackles, four interceptions, and a fumble recovery, he also recorded rushing, receiving, and return yards on offense…Talented athlete with great size for a cornerback…Helped lead Kell HS to a 9-3 record in 2012…Head Coach: Derek Cook.

URIAH LEMAY
WR, 6-2, 197
Matthews, N.C.; Butler HS

URIAH LEMAY…Born: May 8, 1994…High School: Butler … PrepStar All-America Team…2012 Class AAAA All-State Team…2013 Semper Fidelis All-America Bowl…NCPreps.com Top 10 Class of 2013… Fox Sports NEXT three-star prospect, #70 WR in the country…ESPN.com four-star recruit, #48 WR nationally, #26 overall prospect in North Carolina…247sports.com three-star recruit, #101 WR nationally, #15 overall prospect in North Carolina…Maxpreps.com four-star recruit…Had 43 receptions for 842 yards and 14 touchdowns, also rushed for 397 yards on 38 carries and 5 touchdowns in 2011…Tough receiver that can make tough catches in traffic…Head Coach: Brian Hales.

TRAY MATTHEWS
DB, 6-0, 194
Newnan, Ga., Newnan HS

TRAY MATTHEWS…Born: Oct. 18, 1994… Graduated early and enrolled at UGA in January, 2013…High School: Newnan…… PrepStar Dream Team 150…Rivals, Scout.com, 247 Sports and ESPN four-star prospect…Named to 2012 Georgia Sports Writers Association All-State Class AAAAAA First-team defense…Member of the 2012 Atlanta Journal-Constitution All-State Class AAAAAA defense…#6 ranked prospect in Georgia, #7 safety in the nation and #72 ranked prospect in the nation by Rivals.com…#10 ranked safety in the nation in ESPN’s Top 150….247sports.com four-star player, #13 safety in the country, #9 player in Georgia, #99 in 247Sports Top247.… Fox Sports NEXT four-star prospect….#9 safety and #99 overall prospect in the country… Dawg Post #2 safety and #8 overall prospect in Georgia…Recorded 51 tackles including 2.0 tackles for loss, 528 yards receiving and 42 yards rushing in his senior season at Newnan…Participated in the 2013 Army All-American Bowl game…High School Coach: Mike McDonald.

QUINCY MAUGER
DB, 6-0, 197
Marietta, Ga., Kell HS

QUINCY MAUGER…Born: March 4, 1995… Graduated early and enrolled at UGA in January, 2013…High School: Kell… PrepStar All-Southeast Region…Rivals.com three-star prospect, #26 safety nationally, #27 ranked player in the state of Georgia… Fox Sports NEXT three-star prospect, #75 S in the country…Dawg Post #83 overall prospect in Georgia …247sports.com three-star player, #97 safety in the country, #98 player in Georgia…ESPN.com three-star prospect, #42 safety nationally, #77 ranked player in the state of Georgia…2012 Georgia Sports Writers Association Class AAAAA Second Team All-State…2012 Atlanta Journal-Constitution Class AAAAA All-State…Marietta Daily Journal First Team All-County…GHSA Class AAAAA Region 7 First Team All-Region Defense…selected for the Cobb County All-Star Senior Bowl…Played both safety and WR during his senior season, recording 46 total tackles and one interception, and 18 catches for 325 yards and one touchdown…Helped Kell to a 9-1 record and the Class AAAAA Region 7 Championship…Recorded 13 solo tackles and two catches for 69 yards and a touchdown in the Region Championship game — Kell’s second Region Championship in three years…Recorded 108 tackles 5 interceptions, and 5 pass break-ups during his junior season in 2011…Helped Kell win the Class AAAA Region 5 Championship in 2010, and go on to make the GHSA Elite Eight…Enrolled at UGA in January and will participate in 2013 spring practice…High School Coach: Derek Cook.

CHRIS MAYES
DL, 6-4, 330
Griffin, GA
Spalding HS/Mississippi Gulf Coast CC

CHRIS MAYES…Born: September 27, 1991…Graduated JC early and enrolled at UGA in January, 2013…Junior College: PrepStar All-Southeast Region Team…Fox Sports NEXT three-star prospect, #50 DT in the country…247sports.com three-star player, #111 in JUCO prospects nationally….Recorded 17 tackles, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery for Mississippi Gulf Coast CC in 2011…redshirted in 2012…Junior College Coach: Steve Campbell.

High School: Spalding…2010 PrepStar All-Region Team…SuperPrep All-Dixie team…PrepStar All-Southeast Region team…Rivals.com four-star prospect, #26 DT nationally, #22 overall prospect in Georgia…Scout.com three-star prospect, #50 DT nationally…ESPN.com four-star prospect, #23 DT nationally…2010 Griffin Daily News All-Area DL…as a senior recorded 34 total tackles, nine tackles-for-loss, two QB sacks, and two blocked kicks…as a junior recorded 32 total tackles, 18 tackles-for-loss, three QB sacks, 10 QB pressures, and 3 blocked kicks in his first year playing organized football…also lettered in basketball…High School Coach: Clint Ashmore.

SHAUN McGEE
LB, 6’3 233
Snellville, Ga., Brookwood HS

SHAUN McGEE…Born: February 24, 1995…High School: Brookwood…247sports.com four-star player, #30 OLB in the country, #25 player in Georgia…Rivals.com three-star prospect, #26 OLB nationally, #25 prospect in the state… Fox Sports NEXT three-star prospect, #53 DE in the country…Dawg Post #8 DE and #56 overall prospect in Georgia …ESPN.com three-star prospect, #43 DE nationally, #45 overall player in Georgia…As a senior he recorded 60 tackles and 4 sacks…Participated in Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl…Head Coach: Mark Crews.

JOHNNY O’NEAL
LB, 6-2, 225
Dublin, Ga., West Laurens

JOHNNY O’NEAL…Born: March 20, 1995…High School: West Laurens…PrepStar Dream Team 150…Georgia Sports Writers Association Class AAAA All-State team…Atlanta Journal-Constitution Class AAAA All-State team… Fox Sports NEXT four-star prospect, 11 MLB and #249 overall prospect in the country…Dawg Post #2 MLB and #20 overall prospect in Georgia…Rivals.com four-star player, #16 ILB in the country, #12 player in Georgia…ESPN.com four-star player, #5 ILB nationally, #17 overall prospect in Georgia, #72 overall prospect regionally…247Sports.com three-star player, #34 ILB in the country, #58 player in Georgia…Averaged 12.4 tackles a game and recorded three sacks during his seniorseason…High School Coach: Stacy Nables.

BRICE RAMSEY
QB, 6-3, 196
Kingsland, Ga., Camden County HS

BRICE RAMSEY….Born: April 11, 1995…Graduated early and enrolled at UGA in January, 2013…High School: Camden County…PrepStar All-America…Georgia Sports Writers Association Class AAAAAA All-State Team Honorable Mention…Atlanta Journal-Constitution Class AAAAAA All-State Team Honorable Mention…Fox Sports NEXT four-star player, #7 QB in the country, #82 overall prospect in the country…Dawg Post #1 QB and #5 overall prospect in Georgia…Rivals.com four-star player #14 QB in the country, #18 player in Georgia…ESPN four-star player, #115 on the ESPN150, #7 QB in the country, #53 player in the region, #11 player in Georgia…247sports.com four-star player, #3 QB in the country, #5 player in Georgia, #37 in 247Sports Top247… Participated in the Under Armour All-American Game…During his senior season, passed for 1,396 yards and 19 touchdowns while only throwing three interceptions …Also punted and kicked in high school… High School Coach: Jeff Heron.

RYNE RANKIN
LB, 6-1, 230
Orlando, Fla., East River HS

RYNE RANKIN….Born: October 1, 1993… Graduated early and enrolled at UGA in January, 2013…High School: East River…PrepStar All-Southeast Region Team…Ranked as #10 overall player in the Orlando Sentinel’s Central Florida Super60 and #56 in the Florida Top 100.… Fox Sports NEXT three-star prospect, #38 MLB in the country…Rivals.com three-star player #24 ILB in the country, #57 player in Florida…ESPN four-star player, #296 on the ESPN300, #13 ILB in the country, #140 player in the region, #53 player in the state…247sports.com four-star player, #16 ILB in the country, #40 player in Florida…Recorded 189 tackles in 2012…Also punted and kicked in high school… High School Coach: Marc Rankin.

JONATHON RUMPH
WR, 6-5, 215
Cayce, S.C., Brookland-Cayc
Holmes (Miss.) CC

JONATHAN RUMPH…Born: October 24, 1991… Enrolled at UGA in January, 2013…Junior College: Holmes CC… Named First-Team All-State and First-Team All-Region XXIII…ESPN No. 7 JUCO prospect…Rivals .com four-star prospect…Fox Sports NEXT four-star prospect, #2 JUCO WR and #3 overall JUCO prospect in the country…247Sports.com three-star prospect, ranked #57 among JUCO prospects nationally, #10 wide receiver and #14 player in Mississippi…Finished his sophomore season with 45 catches for 569 yards and three touchdowns. Had 42 catches for 778 yards and four touchdowns during his freshman campaign. Holmes CC Head Coach: Jeff Koonz.

High School: Brookland-Cayce…In addition to football, averaged over 18 points and six rebounds a game on the basketball court as a high school senior…High School Coach…Matt Gonzalez.

DEVONDRE SEYMOUR
OL, 6-5, 295
Suwanee, Ga., North Gwinnett HS

DEVONDRE SEYMOUR…Born: January 18, 1995…High School: North Gwinnett…ESPN.com four-star prospect, #14 ranked OT nationally, #27 overall prospect in the state of Georgia, #124 overall player in the Southeast region…ESPN Top 300 prospect, #259 overall prospect nationally…Rivals.com three-star prospect, #42 ranked OT nationally, #45 overall prospect in the state of Georgia…Fox Sports NEXT three-star prospect, #31 OT in the country…Dawg Post #3 OT and #28 overall prospect in Georgia…247sports.com three-star prospect, #31 ranked OT nationally, #46 overall prospect in the state of Georgia…Helped lead North Gwinnett to an 11-2 record his senior season, advanced to the State Quarterfinals but fell to state runner-up Lovejoy 21-6, ended the season as the fourth ranked team in the state of Georgia…Paved the way for a rushing attack that totaled 1,862 yards and 17 touchdowns for the season, the rushing offense averaged 143 yards per game and 5.4 yards per carry in 2012…Played a large role in North Gwinnett’s 10-2 record and a Region 7-AAAAA Championship his junior season…son of former Georgia All-American and NFL All-Pro Richard Seymour…Head Coach: Bob Sphire.

TRAMEL TERRY
ATH, 5-11, 193
Goose Creek, S.C.; Goose Creek HS

TRAMEL TERRY…Born: May 17, 1994… Graduated early and enrolled at UGA in January, 2013…High School: Goose Creek…PrepStar All-America Team…2012 Mr. Football- South Carolina…2012 USA Today All-USA second team…2012 HSSR SCHSL Statewide All-State Football Team…2012 Shrine Bowl selection…Scout.com four-star recruit, #18 WR nationally…Rivals.com four-star recruit, #20 WR nationally, #3 overall prospect in South Carolina…ESPN.com four-star recruit, #9 overall wide receiver, #2 overall prospect in South Carolina….ESPNU 150… 247sports.com four-star recruit, #8 WR nationally, #101 overall prospect nationally, #1 overall prospect in South Carolina… Maxpreps.com five-star recruit…As a junior he caught 44 passes for 833 yards and six touchdowns while rushing for 847 yards on 117 carries and 10 touchdowns…As a senior caught 48 passes for 792 yards and five touchdowns while rushing for 841 yards on 113 carries for 19 touchdowns…Multi-threat athlete…Helped lead Goose Creek HS to a 13-0 record in 2012…Head Coach: Chuck Reedy.

A.J. TURMAN
RB, 6-0, 198
Orlando, Fla., Boone HS

A.J. TURMAN…Born: April 4, 1995…High School: Boone… PrepStar All-America team… Fox Sports NEXT four-star prospect, #41 overall prospect in Florida, #37 RB in the country…Rivals.com four-star player, #260 Player on the ESPN300, #22 RB in the country, #37 player in Florida…ESPN four-star player, #22 RB in the country, #125 player in the region, #47 player in the state…247sports.com four-star player, #13 RB in the country, #26 player in Florida, #185 in 247Sports Top247…Ranked 7th best “Big Back” by MaxPreps…. Rushed for 1,245 yards and 15 touchdowns during his senior year… High School Coach: Phil Ziglar.

SHAQUILLE WIGGINS
DB, 5-10, 165
Tyrone, Ga., Sandy Creek HS

SHAQUILLE WIGGINS…Born: Dec. 16, 1994…High School: Sandy Creek…PrepStar All-Southeast Region…39th ranked prospect on ESPN 150 list…Member of 2012 Georgia Sports Writers Association All-State Class AAAA First Team defense…Four-star rating from ESPN, 247 Sports, Rivals.com and Scout.com…Played in the 2013 Under Armour All-America game…Named to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution All-State Class AAAA defense…#6 rated cornerback and #5 ranked prospect in Georgia by ESPN…247sports.com four-star player, #16 CB in the country, #17 player in Georgia, #186 in 247Sports Top247s…#46 cornerback and #44 prospect in Georgia according to Rivals…Fox Sports NEXT four-star prospect, #15 CB and #150 overall prospect in the country…Dawg Post #1 CB and #12 overall prospect in Georgia…High School Coach: Chip Walker.

REGGIE WILKERSON
DB, 5-11, 162
Citra, Fla., North Marion HS

REGGIE WILKERSON…Born: June 22, 1994… Graduated early and enrolled at UGA in January, 2013…High School: North Marion…PrepStar All-Southeast Region…Orlando Sentinel Super60…Participated in the Florida HS Football Nike 7on7 Competition… Fox Sports NEXT four-star prospect, #34 overall prospect in Florida, #27 CB in the country…Rivals.com four-star recruit, #26 CB nationally, #42 overall prospect in Florida…ESPN.com four-star recruit, #15 CB nationally, #34 overall prospect in Florida…247sports.com four-star recruit, #25 CB nationally, #50 overall prospect in Florida…As a junior had 26 tackles, three pass defenses, one interception, and a fumble recovery…As a senior he had 28 tackles, one interception, and two fumble recoveries…Talented athlete with great ball skills that can play multiple positions…Head Coach: Craig Damon.

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A week before opener, Tim Beckman fired as Illini’s head coach

Tim Beckman AP

In the end, Tim Beckman‘s hot seat turned into an electric chair before the season even kicked off.

In a surprising move given only its timing, Illinois announced that Beckman has been dismissed as its head football coach.  The move comes exactly one week before the Illini open the 2015 season against Kent State.

The firing also comes more than three months after a former player accused the coach of “misuse and abuse of power,” while another stated shortly thereafter that Beckman “takes the cake as the worst coach I ever met.”  Athletic director Mike Thomas initially supported the beleaguered head coach, but the preliminary results of an external review into the accusations forced Thomas into pulling the trigger now instead of later.

“The preliminary information external reviewers shared with me does not reflect our values or our commitment to the welfare of our student-athletes, and I’ve chosen to act accordingly,” Thomas said in a statement. “During the review, we have asked people not to rush to judgment, but I now have enough information to make this decision in assessing the status and direction of the football program.”

The results, while preliminary, are damning, and show exactly why Thomas and the university had to make the move in the here and now. From the release:

During a preliminary briefing from the external reviewers, Thomas said he learned of efforts to deter injury reporting and influence medical decisions that pressured players to avoid or postpone medical treatment and continue playing despite injuries. He also said in some instances student-athletes were treated inappropriately with respect to whether they could remain on scholarship during the spring semester of their senior year if they weren’t on the team.

“Both of those findings are unsettling violations of University policy and practice and do not reflect the culture that we wish to create in athletic programs for our young people,” Thomas said. “I expect my coaches to protect players and foster their success on and off the field.”

Beckman has been fired for cause, meaning he will not receive the $3.1 million remaining on the last two years of his original five-year contract or the $743,000 called for if his contract had been bought out.

Replacing Beckman on an interim basis for the entire 2015 season is offensive coordinator Bill Cubit.  The release stated that “the external review did not indicate any findings related to Coach Cubit.”

In three seasons with the Illini, Beckman compiled a 12-25 overall record and a 4-20 mark in Big Ten play. He likely would’ve been fired after the 2014 season, but the Illini managed to win their final two games to earn a bowl bid.

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Louisville’s stadium expansion to push capacity past UK’s

PJCS expansion

That title, however, comes with an asterisk.

First, though, Louisville officials announced at a press conference that the home of the football Cardinals, Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium, will undergo what’s projected to be a $55 million expansion.  The expansion will add approximately 10,000 new seats — the release explains “1,000 modern club seats, 65 new premium loge level boxes, and 10 exclusive field level suites” will be part of new seating — which will push the capacity of PJCS to around 65,000.

Additionally, the football facility will see a significant upgrade as well as part of the renovation.

The Howard Schnellenberger Football Complex, which currently sits in the north end zone, will undergo a major expansion and facelift. The team’s weight room and conditioning center will double in size, creating a total of 20,000 square feet of work space for training, conditioning, and therapeutic support. A spacious player’s lounge, improvements for coaches’ offices and the team locker room, and expansive theatre-style meeting areas will also be among the enhancements for student-athlete development.

“We are extremely excited to launch this project and I know our fans are thrilled as well,” said athletic director Tom Jurich in a statement. “We worked extremely hard on this one to assure the timing was right before we moved forward. We feel that we have a plan in place that will excite our fans and continue to advance our program, which has truly gained a national stage with our university’s move to the ACC.”

Upon completion, PJCS will have a capacity greater than in-state rival Kentucky’s Commonwealth Stadium (61,000). Now the asterisk: Capacity had actually reached nearly 68,000 at Commonwealth in the late nineties prior to a current renovation that will actually reduce seating to the aforementioned 61,000.

Getting an attendance one-up on their rival, though, wasn’t part of the thought process, at least not publicly.

Whether or not UofL fans can consistently fill the additional seats remains to be seen.

(Photo credit: Louisville athletics)

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Lawyer for Jameis Winston’s accuser hired by Baylor rape victim

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The high-profile Baylor rape case has added a prominent new character, the Dallas Morning News is reporting.

According to the paper, nationally-known Title IX attorney John Clune of Colorado has been hired by the victim and her family to “investigate a number of issues surrounding the case,” including Baylor’s handling of it. A jury found earlier this week found that former Baylor football player Sam Ukwuachu had raped a former BU women’s soccer player in October of 2013, five months after his dismissal from Boise State.

Clune subsequently confirmed to the News in a phone conversation, as well as in a statement, that he is involved in the case.

“We are glad to see that President Starr and Baylor have chosen to conduct their own investigation and look forward to learning the outcome of that process,” Clune said in the statement. “Regardless of what facts these investigations may bare, there is a significant teachable moment here for all in higher education and we are hopeful that Baylor University embraces that great opportunity.”

A Waco attorney, Bill Johnston, is assisting Clune and his firm in their own investigation of BU’s handling of Ukwuachu.  It’s unclear if the attorneys’ investigation will extend to Boise State as well.

The hiring of Clune is perceived to be the precursor to civil action being pursued by the victim, although it’s highly unlikely the university would ever allow any lawsuit to see the light of day in a courtroom and would instead aggressively seek an out-of-court settlement.

Clune is likely most known as the attorney representing the woman who accused former Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston of raping her in 2012.  He also represented a woman in a civil suit who claimed three Oregon basketball players raped her; that case resulted in an out-of-court settlement for the alleged victim in which she received $800,000 as well as free tuition and housing while UO admitted no wrongdoing.

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CFT 2015 Preseason Preview: Big 12 Predictions

TCU at Baylor

The Big 12 was left on the outside looking in of the College Football Playoff party a year ago, but it looks as though the odds are good the conference is not left out this season. TCU opens the 2015 season as the second-ranked team in the major polls and the Horned Frogs are joined by Baylor as popular picks to make a playoff push in 2015. But what about Oklahoma and Texas you ask? This year should see some improvements with both blueblood programs, although progress at each will be measured differently.

It is time for me to go on the record with some Big 12 predictions. Let’s just say I have a weird gut feeling about some of these.

1. TCU (Last year: 12-1, beat Ole Miss in Peach Bowl)
TCU returns a loaded offense with 10 starters coming back in 2015 from last season’s surging offense. That includes quarterback Trevone Boykin, who may be my top contender in the Heisman Trophy race this season thanks to his experience and supporting cast. TCU needs to replace just one offensive lineman, which puts TCU ahead of the curve compared to the rest of the conference. The schedule does have its challenges ahead of the Horned Frogs, including a season opener on the road against a solid Minnesota squad and road trips to Kansas State, Oklahoma State and Oklahoma. But I think TCU can manage to get away with wins in all three. In fact, I see TCU winning every game on the schedule this season, which would be a remarkable feat for this program on the rise. Most importantly, if TCU does live up to this prediction, there is not a shot they miss out on the playoff at the end of the season. None. There are some questions on the defensive side of the football, but I trust Gary Patterson will be able to address those concerns enough to get by while the offense is cooking.

2. Oklahoma (Last year: 8-5, lost to Clemson in Russell Athletic Bowl)
I feel rather optimistic about the Sooners this season, although I wonder why I feel this optimistic. Heck, I’ve even calling for Oklahoma to win a road game at Baylor. Call it gut instinct if you will. Oklahoma lost every game against a ranked opponent last season and holes were exposed by Baylor and Clemson. But Oklahoma hung in there with Kansas State and TCU and the Sooners have the best running back in the conference with Samaje Perine. I’m looking for a big year from Perine, if the rebuilt offensive line can help him out. I think Oklahoma gets off to an OK start, with the game at Tennessee a toss-up (I have it marked as a loss right now). I think Bob Stoops comes through with some solid performances to surprise some along the way to a second place finish in the Big 12.

3. Kansas State (Last year: 9-4, lost to UCLA in Alamo Bowl)
Here is what I have come to learn about Kansas State over the years. Bill Snyder is a good coach and finds a way to put together a solid team more often than not. You can look at Kansas State on paper and suggest there is no reason to be too excited about the Wildcats in 2015, and that is fine. Snyder will find a way to make it all come together, and he will have three fairly easy games and a bye week at the start of the season to get it all worked out before jumping into Big 12 play. That could get off to a rough start as well, but the bye week before hosting Baylor could be huge. I think Kansas State finishes strong in Big 12 play after the bye week.

4. Baylor (Last year: 11-2, lost to Michigan State in Cotton Bowl)
This one is sure to raise some eyebrows, and I fully understand. Baylor is seen by many as a Big 12 favorite and legitimate playoff contender. Eight starters are back on offense, and nine more on defense. If not for a slip up at West Virginia last season, Baylor would have been in the playoff with an undefeated record. Just like last season, the margin for error is extremely thin for the Bears. This may be a solid test for Art Briles, as he looks to work his quarterback magic once more with Seth Russell taking over a talented offense. With an experienced offensive line protecting him and Corey Coleman and KD Cannon as targets and running back Shock Linwood in the backfield, things should look pretty good for Baylor, right? I’m going with the gut instinct again here to explain why I have Baylor down so low in the Big 12 standings. I think Baylor gets off to a great start, but hits a road block after the second bye week. I’m putting Baylor down for back-to-back losses against Kansas State and Oklahoma and one more two weeks later against TCU. But they may be the best three-loss team in the nation.

5. Texas (Last year: 6-7, lost to Arkansas in Texas Bowl)
When Charlie Strong was hired as the head coach of Texas I said it might take a few years for him to have the Longhorns ready to compete for a Big 12 title. Entering year two, I think we start to see some signs of progress. With a couple of coaching changes on the staff, the hope is the offense begins to show some more consistency and efficiency. The Longhorns have to decide whether to go with Tyrone Swoopes or Jerrod Heard at quarterback and replace both starting tackles on the line, but things should start looking a little more stable on offense. After experiencing a setback in the season opener in South Bend against Notre Dame, the Longhorns rebound before hitting TCU and Oklahoma before the bye week. We will see this season there is still work to be done for Texas to compete against the best fo the conference, but it should start proving to us things are getting better.

6. Oklahoma State (Last year: 7-6, beat Washington in Cactus Bowl)
Another relatively low expectation for the Cowboys compared to many of the preseason previews out there. The big hang up for Oklahoma State for me will be the schedule. The road game at Texas I think ultimately goes down as a loss as the Longhorns look to make a bit of a statement. A road trip to West Virginia could go down as a loss as well, and TCU, Baylor and Oklahoma could all be home losses as well. Oklahoma State is probably more likely to go 1-2 in those big three games in the last half of the season, but I have them as losses right now.

7. West Virginia (Last year: 7-6, lost to Texas A&M in Liberty Bowl)
West Virginia should once again be somewhere in the middle of the Big 12, and will be one of those teams capable of pulling an upset. West Virginia will not be a pushover and should have some back-and-forth games, but the Mountaineers are not quite equipped to make a run at the Big 12 title. They are dangerous though as long as Dana Holgorsen is commanding the offense and a defense returning nine starters (including safety Karl Joseph). West Virginia’s biggest weakness is in the trenches. There won’t be enough of a push from the defense and the offensive line may not be the most dependable. The start of Big 12 play could be rough (at Oklahoma, vs. Oklahoma State, at Baylor, at TCU after bye).

8. Texas Tech (Last year: 4-8)
The bets thing about Texas Tech is Kliff Kingsbury and his swagger. But good looks do not translate to wins on the football field, and Texas Tech is the textbook example of that right now. I have little faith in Texas Tech’s ability to be consistent enough on offense and I have even less confidence in Texas Tech’s defense to stop anything. Sure, shootouts may be fun to watch at times, but the Red Raiders need a lot of things to start turning around if we are ever going to see this program recapture the magic the Mike Leach era offered at times.

9. Iowa State (Last year: 2-10)
You may not find a harder working two-win team in the country than Iowa State. Yes, it could be another long season for the Cyclones, and that could place head coach Paul Rhoads in some unfortunate territory at the end of the season, but there should be some bright spots for Iowa State along the way. Wide receiver Allen Lazard will be tough to slow down and could have a big season. And hey, they’re not Kansas.

10. Kansas (Last year: 3-9)
I have Kansas down for one win this season and even that might be a stretch. New head coach David Beaty has his work cut out for him, but at least he is bringing some passion to the rebuilding project in Lawrence. He will need it with just three starters returning on each side of the football field, and his quarterback was injured in spring practice. If Kansas does not beat South Dakota State in week one (not a given by any means), then the Jayhawks will be staring down an 0-12 record this season.

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Sam Ukwuachu’s dad: Art Briles didn’t know of son’s past violence

Oklahoma State v Baylor Getty Images

The he said/he said when it comes to the disturbing Sam Ukwuachu situation has added yet another layer.

Ukwuachu transferred to Baylor in May of 2013 after being dismissed by Boise State, and was found guilty earlier this week of the rape of a BU student that happened five months after he moved on to the Bears.  It surfaced during the rape trial that, while at Boise, Ukwuachu was involved in at least one episode of violence involving his then-girlfriend, which some have surmised triggered his dismissal by BSU.

Art Briles claimed that Chris Petersendid not disclose that there had been violence toward women, but he did tell me of a rocky relationship with his girlfriend which contributed to his depression.”  Petersen countered that, in the phone conversation described by the BU head coach, he “thoroughly apprised Coach Briles of the circumstances surrounding Sam’s disciplinary record and dismissal.”

Petersen’s statement never mentioned specifically whether or not violence was discussed between the two coaches; in fact, Boise released a statement in the aftermath of the dispute that “Ukwuachu’s dismissal from the Boise State football team had nothing to do with accusations of any sexual assaults or with accusations that he physically assaulted any women.”

In the latest twist, Ukwuachu’s father, Felix Ukwuachu, stated during a radio interview that he heard the conversation between Petersen and Briles from the former’s perspective. And, according to the dad, Briles’ version of the events that preceded his son’s arrival in Waco is accurate. From KWTX.com‘s account of the radio spot:

Felix Ukwuachu, said in an interview with KWTX at his home in Houston, that he took a bus to Boise in May 2013 in order to pick up his son and met with Petersen who told him he was going to recommend the player to his “friend Art Briles.”

And he said he was in an outer office when Petersen placed the call.

“We could hear the whole conversation,” he said.

“Petersen said ‘Samuel is a dynamic player, a good boy’ (and) said he would be pleased if you take him into your school,” Felix Ukwuachu said.

Petersen “did not let Samuel go because of sexual abuse or any kind of abuse,” Ukwuachu said.

“Samuel was depressed, Samuel was homesick it was making him…think suicidal thoughts, so we decided that we told him you have to come home,” he said.

“Samuel was in good standing with University of Boise State, Boise state,” he said, and a transfer document that Baylor released confirmed that.

The fact that Briles and now the elder Ukwuachu claim Petersen vouched for the player in setting up the transfer might raise at least one eyebrow. In a damning report published shortly before the Ukwuachu, Texas Monthly wrote that “the two programs had some communication regarding Ukwuachu in which Boise State officials expressed reticence about supporting the player’s efforts to get back on the field.”

Then again, a report surfaced this week that then-Florida head coach Will Muschamp decided against pursuing Ukwuachu “after a Boise State athletic department employee detailed Ukwuachu’s troubles with a girlfriend.” That employee relayed allegations of physical abuse of his then-girlfriend while at Boise. Some have questioned how Muschamp allegedly could’ve known of violence in Ukwuachu’s past and Briles specifically and BU in general didn’t.

Ukwuachu was sentenced to 180 days in jail and 10 years of probation.

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Devlyn Cousin takes to social media to announce Cyclones departure

Devlyn Cousin

A little more than a week before Iowa State opens its season, the Cyclones’ depth along the defensive line has taken a bit of a hit.

On social media, Devlyn Cousin announced that he has decided to transfer out of the ISU football program and continue his playing career elsewhere. No reason was given for the abrupt departure.

Paul Rhoads subsequently confirmed the lineman’s departure.

“Devlyn and I met last night and he informed me of his decision to leave the football team and his intention to transfer to a school that is a better fit for him,” the head coach said in a statement. “He is going to stay in school at Iowa State for the rest of the fall semester and we will help him in the transfer process. We wish him success in his future.”

Cousin played in 16 games the past two seasons after redshirting as a true freshman in 2012.  He started two of those contests, with both starts coming in 2014.

In December of last year, Cousin was arrested and charged with simple serious domestic assault and obstruction of emergency communication after a verbal altercation with his girlfriend turned physical.  While he was indefinitely suspended, he ultimately was reinstated and entered summer camp No. 2 on the depth chart at tackle.

(Photo credit: Iowa State athletics)

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If rehab goes well, Hogs will lose Jonathan Williams to NFL

Jonathan Williams AP

At the rate things are going, Jonathan Williams may have played his final down as a member of the Arkansas football program.

Initially diagnosed with a foot injury that was expected to sideline him for an extended period of time, the Arkansas running back was subsequently ruled out for the entire season.  Williams, who sustained the injury during a scrimmage a couple of weeks ago, had two screws surgically inserted into his left foot to help promote growth and healing in a torn ligament.

If his rehab goes as expected, Williams said, he won’t be returning to the Razorbacks for the 2016 season.  Instead, he’ll make his way to the NFL as an early entrant in the draft.

Last season, Williams led the Hogs in rushing with 1,190 yards. His 12 rushing touchdowns were tied for the team lead with Alex Collins, who was second on the team with 1,100 yards.  The backs were the only FBS teammates to rush for more than a thousand yards last season.

Williams is Arkansas’ No. 10 all-time leading rusher with 2,321 career rushing yards. His 5.72 career yards per rush average ranks sixth all-time at Arkansas and his rushing total in 2014 was the eighth-best single-season mark in Razorback history.

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Andre Carter returning to Cal as student assistant coach

Andre Carter

A decade and a half after leaving Cal, Andre Carter is returning to the Bears football program.

The school announced in a press release that Carter has joined Sonny Dykes‘ staff in the capacity of student assistant coach.  Carter will assist Fred Tate in coaching the Bears’ defensive line.

Carter enrolled as an undergraduate at Cal earlier this year to pursue his bachelor’s degree in American studies.

“We are thrilled that Andre has returned to Cal to get his degree,” head coach Sonny Dykes said in a statement. “We are also looking forward to Andre being able to impart the knowledge he gained both on and off the field during a standout collegiate and NFL career to our players. He knows what it takes to succeed at the highest level of football and will certainly be a positive influence on everyone in our program.”

Carter was a consensus All-American in his final season at Cal in 2000.  His final two seasons, he was a unanimous first-team All-Pac-10 selection as a defensive end.

The 13-year NFL veteran hopes this position will help launch a coaching career at either the collegiate or professional level.

“Returning to Cal to earn my degree has been a life-changing experience,” Carter said. “I have already accomplished what I wanted to in football by playing at the highest level but there will be no greater feeling than earning my degree from one of the nation’s top universities. That’s why I’m back. …

“I feel I can impart the current players with the right way to play the game and the desire you need to have to be successful. There’s no greater satisfaction than becoming a coach.”

(Photo credit: Cal athletics)

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After leaving Irish for WMU, Anthony Rabasa leaves Broncos too

Wake Forest v Notre Dame Getty Images

As it turns out, Anthony Rabasa‘s stay in Kalamazoo was an extremely brief one.

Rabasa had transferred into the Western Michigan football program July 30, P.J. Fleck announced at the time.  Less than four weeks later, Fleck confirmed that Rabasa has decided to leave the Broncos and head back to his home in Miami.

From the sounds of it, the defensive lineman is giving up football entirely.

“He got here and he realized he wanted to move on with his life,” Fleck said. “We support him 100 percent. He’s a great kid. It’s just that football here wasn’t meant to be for him. He wants to head back down to Miami and start a career, which I don’t blame him for. He was in a battle here against some guys that are playing well.”

As a graduate transfer from Notre Dame, Rabasa would’ve been eligible to play immediately in 2015.

A three-star member of the Irish’s 2011 recruiting class, Rivals.com rated him as the No. 11 weakside defensive end in the country and the No. 54 player at any position in the state of Florida. After taking a redshirt as a true freshman, he played in two games in 2012 and five in 2013.

He didn’t see the field at all for the Irish in 2014.

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Wolverine DT Bryan Mone likely lost for season with broken leg

Michigan v Indiana Getty Images

In the run-up to Jim Harbaugh‘s first game as head coach at his alma mater, Michigan has forced to deal with a significant health issue along its defensive line.

Harbaugh confirmed during a press conference earlier in the day that Bryan Mone sustained a broken bone in his lower leg during a recent practice session.  Harbaugh labeled the injury as “long-term,” intimating that the defensive tackle will likely be sidelined for the entire 2015 season.

It was a freak play,” Harbaugh said. “I’ve never seen it before in a practice or games.”

And just how did the freakish occurrence transpire? From mlive.com:

After Michigan’s defense blocked a field goal, Mone rolled out and attempted to block for Jabrill Peppers on a return attempt when his leg was rolled up, resulting in a broken bone in his leg.

Mone appeared in 12 games as a true freshman last season, making one start. He was projected to rotate at nose tackle this season.

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Five-star signee, Gators’ likely starting LT set to undergo surgery

Martez Ivey

On the same day Florida revealed that, as expected, they will go with two quarterbacks in the opener, they also revealed that one of the players who would’ve been charged with protecting them very well might not be available.

Prized 2015 recruit Martez Ivey has been dealing with an unspecified leg injury that dates back to his high school days.  The injury progressed to the point where medical intervention was necessary, with head coach Jim McElwain confirming that the offensive lineman will undergo arthroscopic surgery Friday.

With the season opener against New Mexico State nine days away, there’s no timetable for a return.

“This morning, Martez came in with a sore leg and we went and had it looked at,” McElwain said. “There was something existing there. We’ll get him in there and scope that tomorrow morning. Found a preexisting thing that was kind of bothering him. We’ll get that cleaned up.

“I have no idea exactly when his return will be. … He’ll be back. I don’t know how quickly or anything yet. But it’s not. … it doesn’t appear to be a season-ending thing or anything like that.”

The good news for UF is that, after the opener, they have games against East Carolina and Kentucky before its first “real” test of the season against Tennessee Sept. 26.  That game begins a stretch of five straight games against teams currently ranked in the Associated Press Top 25.

The 6-5, 302-pound Ivey was one of the highest-rated recruits in the country last season, with Rivals.com rating the five-star lineman as the No. 1 tackle in the country; the No. 2 player at any position in the state of Florida; and the No. 4 player overall.  He’s been working with the first-team offense and had been widely expected to be the starting left tackle when the season opened.

(Photo credit: Rivals.com)

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NCAA denies Ishaq Williams’ appeal, won’t play for Irish in 2015

Ishaq Williams AP

As it turns out, Notre Dame won’t have Ishaq Williams on the field this season after all.

That much was confirmed by Brian Kelly, with the Irish head coach announcing Thursday that Williams’ appeal to the NCAA that would’ve allowed him to play in 2015 has been denied.  Williams did not attend classes at ND or any other institution during the spring semester, leading in part to the NCAA issue.

That’s how Williams’ situation differed from KeiVarae Russell‘s.  Russell attended classes during that same period, and, after re-enrolling in school in late May, was cleared by the NCAA earlier this month to play in 2015.

Williams had been formally readmitted to Notre Dame around the same time as Russell, and Kelly seemed mildly optimistic the player would be back on the field this year.

Williams and Russell were suspended for the entire 2014 season because of the findings rendered in an academic fraud investigation. Five players were initially suspended, with only safety Eilar Hardy playing at all in 2014. Bowling Green announced late last month that Hardy had transferred into its football program.

The defensive lineman had played in 24 games the two seasons prior to his suspension and was expected to be a starter in 2014.  Had he been cleared by the NCAA, he would’ve been a significant contributor in the Irish’s line rotation.

As for Williams’ immediate future…

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‘Neck instability’ sidelines starting Vols S LaDarrell McNeil indefinitely

Alabama v Tennessee Getty Images

A suspension to one of Tennessee’s most productive offensive players wasn’t the only negative news coming out of Knoxville Thursday.

On the same day Pig Howard‘s one-game suspension was announced, head coach Butch Jones also revealed that LaDarrell McNeil will be sidelined indefinitely for what’s being described as ‘neck instability.”  Jones acknowledged that the safety could miss an extended period of time because of the issue.

“LaDarrell McNeil, this one came kind of out of nowhere,” Jones said. “Very, very unfortunate. I feel for him. He’s had some neck instability there, so he’s undergoing further examination. But he will be out an extended period of time, and it could be a lengthy period of time.”

247Sports.com‘s Wes Rucker writes that “Jones said McNeil’s ‘life after football’ was going to be the program’s priority,” adding that “[c]oaches using phrases like that can be an ominous sign for a player’s future on the field.”

Whether the senior defensive back will be sidelined temporarily or permanently, it will serve as a huge blow to the Vols’ defense.

The past three seasons, McNeil has played in 36 games. He started 31 of those contests, including 24 the past two seasons.

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Pitt loses RB Rachid Ibrahim to season-ending Achilles injury

Rachid Ibrahim, Kendall Fuller AP

An experienced member of Pittsburgh’s backfield has been put on the shelf courtesy of a non-contact injury.

First-year head coach Pat Narduzzi confirmed Wednesday that Rachid Ibrahim sustained an injury to his Achilles tendon in “one of those freak accidents that happens.” The injury, which occurred earlier this week, will sideline the running back for the entire 2015 season.

While he won’t have a concrete impact on the field this season, Ibrahim is already doing what he can to have an impact off of it.

He was choked up shortly after they told him what it was and what the recovery time was,” running backs coach Andre Powell said. “That afternoon, he was in meetings and he was talking in meetings and communicating with the young kids. He’s tough, he’s a leader, and he’ll fight through it.”

Used mainly as a third-down, change-of-pace back behind reigning ACC Player of the Year James Connor, Ibrahim was fifth on the team with 263 yards rushing last season, although his 8.0 yards per carry were tops on the team.  He also had 11 receptions for 73 yards coming out of the backfield.

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Erstwhile Irish RB Greg Bryant says he’s reopening recruitiment

Purdue v Notre Dame AP

It appears that Greg Bryant has all but closed the door on a return to South Bend next year.  Or any year after that, for that matter.

Earlier this month, and after he was suspended for the first four games, it was confirmed that Bryant had been declared academically ineligible and wouldn’t play at all in 2015.  While head coach Brian Kelly stated Bryant would be , the running back’s father stated that, even as he would be returning to classes at the school, he wouldn’t be reporting for summer camp.

However, the school part won’t come to fruition as Bryant posted on Instagram that he participated in his first practice Thursday at ASA Miami, a junior college in Florida and is coached by a former Notre Dame staffer.

Additionally, Bryant stated that he has decided to reopen his recruitment.  While that doesn’t necessarily preclude a return to the Irish, it appears he will be looking in other directions to restart his FBS career in 2016.

Below is his complete social media missive.

Had my first practice with my new team ASA Miami today and it went great! They gave me a opportunity to wear #1 this season! I’ll be keeping everyone updated with highlights and games. Opening up my recruitment so my next move will be my best move. Kinda feel like HIGHSCHOOL again getting offers and everything hahah. Highlights coming soon.

Last season as a true sophomore, Bryant’s 289 yards rushing were good for second on the team. Bryant was a five-star member of the Irish’s 2013 recruiting class and was rated as the No. 3 back in the country.

If he returns to the FBS level next year, Bryant would have two years of eligibility remaining.

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