How dire is Rutgers’ situation in the secondary? It’s decided the best tack to take is to slightly weaken the offensive side of the ball in order to prop up that defensive unit.
Head coach Kyle Flood announced Tuesday that wide receiver Ruhann Peele will be moving to cornerback in an attempt to add depth to a unit that’s been decimated by injuries and departures. In less than a month, the Scarlet Knights have lost starter Lew Toler to a season-ending injury while another starter, Ian Thomas, abruptly left the program to pursue a baseball career. Toler’s replacement, Nadir Barnwell, has been suspended for at least this weekend’s game following an arrest on a drunk-driving charge.
The situation prompted Flood to approach Peele Monday about a position switch. “We felt from a skill set and from an athleticism standpoint that he would be the best option,” the coach said of the freshman.
Peele’s 18 receptions are third on the team, while his 163 receiving yards are fifth. While the move is expected to be short-term, Peele, who played some safety in high school, is ready to do whatever it takes to help the team.
“I’m a football player. I’ll do what’s best for the team,” said Peele. “If (Flood) thinks it’s going to help the program this week, that’s what is going to help the program.
“I’m trying to soak up everything, learn everything I possibly can to help the team on defense this week.
Turns out they breed dudes in sports other than football.
Boston College head coach Steve Addazio revealed Monday that Max Schulze-Geisthovel (not pictured) will handle kickoff duties for the Eagles this fall. Schulze-Geisthovel is no ordinary new addition; he is a German native that currently plays for BC’s men’s soccer team.
“Guy is going to really help us on kickoffs,” said Addazio. “He’s got a strong, live leg. He’s working on his field goals. But I know right now he’s going to help us on kickoff. He puts it high and deep and pretty consistently. He’s as strong a leg as I’ve seen here. So that’s a good thing. We’ll see how he does on the field goal part. Every once in a while, you get a little something. We don’t have a huge walk-on population, nature of the place. A lot of state schools have things like that pop up a little easier. But this is great. Nice little gift there.”
A 6-foot-2, 190-pound midfielder from Drensteinfurt, Germany, Schulze-Geisthovel appeared in 19 games as a senior last fall and led the club with seven goals.
Mike Kroll handled kickoffs and place-kicking duties for the Eagles last fall, averaging 61 yards on 55 kickoffs while hitting 12-of-14 field goals. As a team, Boston College ranked 69th nationally in kickoff average.
Florida is heading to the Dallas area to kick Michigan’s behind, and one of Dallas’s own is heading to Gainesville.
Former Texas offensive lineman Jean Delance announced Monday he will transfer to Florida. Delance made the announcement on his Twitter account. Florida has not confirmed the addition as of press time.
Delance announced a transfer from Texas last week after not getting snaps in the Longhorns’ 2-deep. “I have ultimately decided transferring is the best decision for me to pursue a fresh start at another school,” Delance said at the time. A 6-foot-5 offensive tackle from the east Dallas suburb of Mesquite, Texas, Delance signed as a member of the 2016 class who appeared in two games as a true freshman last fall.
Delance will be able to take a redshirt in transferring from Texas to Florida and emerge with three seasons to compete for the Gators.
It’s certainly expected that Shane Buechele will start at quarterback for Texas this fall. After all, he did so last season and performed capably well — about as well as you could expect for a true freshman on a 5-7 team. Buechele’s competition for the job is true freshman Sam Ehlinger, and you definitely wouldn’t bank on a true freshman beating out an incumbent starter.
Tom Herman confirmed as much Monday. Herman said Buechele would start if the Maryland opener was tomorrow, and that will be the case until it isn’t.
“As of today, Shane’s starting,” he said. “Now, does that guarantee he’ll start against Maryland? No. But, he’ll take the bulk of the ones. If he doesn’t take advantage of them, Sam plays better than him, that’ll change. As of now, Shane’s getting the bulk of the one reps, but Sam will continue to do that…. It’s a good battle, but you can tell Shane’s played 12 games of college football.”
The question, of course, is not who will take the first snap against Maryland, but how much Ehlinger will play and how long Buechele can hold him off.
It’s no secret Herman asks his quarterbacks to take hits, and Ehlinger seems better equipped to do that. Texas lists Ehlinger carrying 230 pounds on his 6-foot-2 frame, compared to Buechele’s 6-foot-1, 205-pound build. Ehlinger compiled 2,395 rushing yards and 35 touchdowns while playing through injury for the bulk of his senior year. Buechele rushed for 151 yards on 97 carries, while also setting Texas freshman records with 2,958 passing yards.
LSU is keeping the tradition of a live tiger mascot alive with the announced addition of Mike VII. The new Mike the Tiger has moved into his new spacious digs and is already having football fans and animal lovers fall in love with him.
The newest addition had to be checked to make sure he was qualified to be released into LSU’s special habitat that has been the home for previous tigers. Mike VII will not be making appearances at Tiger Stadium on game days as has previously been a tradition. Instead, Mike VII will be able to roam a recently updated and renovated tiger habitat in style and root on the Tigers from the comfort of his new home.
Mike VI died of cancer last October.