Coming up on two months since dropping Notre Dame in favor of transferring to UCLA, highly-touted defensive lineman Eddie Vanderdoes has received the all-clear from the NCAA to play for the Bruins this fall.
Scout.com and CBSSports’ Bruce Feldman report that Vanderdoes has received clearance for immediate eligibility after going through the NCAA appeals process. Notre Dame, the school Vanderdoes signed with in February, had reportedly denied the five-star D-lineman his release from his National Letter of Intent. One initial concern for the Irish was believed to be that Vanderdoes would sign with USC, Notre Dame’s rival. The Bruins were also considered to be a favorite for Vanderdoes before Signing Day 2013.
However, Feldman reported in June that a family illness and a desire to be closer to home could factor into Vanderdoes’ appeals process. While UCLA has yet to officially comment on the latest reports, it appears that’s been the case. Had Vanderdoes lost his appeal, he would have had to sit out the 2013 season and would lose a season of eligibility, In other words, he would have four years to complete three seasons of eligibility.
It’s possible that Vanderdoes could see playing time this fall, especially if the hip injury to Bruins defensive end Owamagbe Odighizuwa forces some shuffling along UCLA’s defensive line.
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.