Notre Dame v USC

USC not ready to pull trigger on Barkley’s replacement


For those wondering who will replace Matt Barkley under center for USC, you’re going to have to wait a while longer for the answer.

In its latest depth chart released Saturday, the Trojans listed Max Wittek (pictured, No. 13) OR Cody Kessler (pictured, No. 6) — in that order, for what it’s worth — at the quarterback position.  The redshirt sophomores have engaged in essentially what’s been a two-man battle for the starting job since the start of spring practice.

Thus far head coach Lane Kiffin has declined to tip his hand as to which direction he’s headed, even as some think he already knows who the starter will be and is simply making the season-opening opponent — Hawaii, coached by former USC offensive coordinator Norm Chow — guess right up until kickoff.

Gamesmanship aside, USC will head into the 2013 season with co-starters at the position, with Kiffin making it crystal clear that neither contender grabbed the job by the throat.

“If somebody would have outperformed the other one, we wouldn’t be here,” Kiffin said. “But they both did really well.”

The quarterback position, though, is not the only position without a designated starter for the Thursday opener at Aloha Stadium.

In fact, all four positions in the secondary have an “OR” between the top two players, with both safety positions carrying an “OR” between the top three players.  Right guard, tight end and tailback also include co-starters.  Or co-co-starters for the latter as the RB pecking order goes “Tre Madden OR Silas Redd OR Justin Davis.”

Redd, the Trojans leading rusher in 2012, missed the latter half of spring practice with a knee injury.  Earlier this week, Kiffin said he’s “not sure he will be” available for the opener as the back continues his recovery.

Dismissed by ‘Cuse, Ashton Broyld lands at West Georgia

Ashton Broyld, Steele Divitto
Associated Press
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A little over two months after getting the boot from Syracuse, Ashton Broyld has found himself a new college football home.

Multiple outlets have picked up on the fact that Broyld is now playing for Div. II West Georgia.  Broyld left the Orange listed as a running back, but is playing wide receiver according to the team’s official roster.

There was already a familiar face in the locker room upon Broyld’s arrival as Wayne Williams is playing defensive tackle for the Wolves.  Williams announced in late June that he had decided to transfer out of Scott Shafer‘s ‘Cuse program.

I checked in on them,” Shafer said of his two former players Thursday. “I’m happy to see those guys are still playing football.”

In 2013, Broyld led the team in both receptions (52) and receiving yards (452). Broyld was the Orange’s leading receiver through the first three games last season before a lower-leg injury caused him to miss eight of the last nine games.

In late July, Broyld was dismissed for violating unspecified team rules.

Vols ‘very confident there was no inappropriate conduct’ between Butch Jones, player

KNOXVILLE, TN - OCTOBER 11:  Head coach Butch Jones of the Tennessee Volunteers watches the action during a game against the Chattanooga Mocs at Neyland Stadium on October 11, 2014 in Knoxville, Tennessee.  (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
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In the midst of reports that he had a physical altercation with one of his Tennessee players during summer camp this year, Butch Jones labeled the speculation “absolutely ridiculous.”

Apparently, his bosses agree with the head coach.

At a board meeting Thursday, UT-Knoxville chancellor Jimmy Cheek stated that he and athletic director Dave Hart had done their “due diligence” in investigating the accusations that Jones and senior offensive lineman Mack Crowder were involved in some type of physical skirmish during practice this past August.  The end result of interviews with Jones, coaches and players was the conclusion that there was nothing to the reports and message-board rumors.

“There’s been a lot of rumor and misinformation on social media and message boards about an alleged incident during football practice,” Cheek said according to‘s Wes Rucker. “It’s not our practice to respond to rumors, but I thought it was important to let you know that we’ve done our due diligence and Dave Hart and I are very confident there was no inappropriate conduct with any players or coaches.”

Shortly after Cheek spoke at the board meeting, Crowder took to Twitter with a series of missives that speaks around the issue.