James Franklin

James Franklin could be back for Missouri this week


Missouri quarterback James Franklin could be back playing this Saturday when the Tigers take on Kentucky, head coach Gary Pinkel said on Sunday.

“I think he’s going to be very close next week,” Pinkel said. “We think it’s very possible he’ll be ready.”

Franklin, a senior, injured his shoulder early in the fourth quarter against Georgia back in mid-October. He has missed three starts since then. Freshman Maty Mauk relieved him against the Bulldogs and helped finish off a 41-26 victory for the Tigers. Since then, Mauk has steadily improved and is coming off his best game in a 31-3 beat down of Tennessee. Mauk threw for 163 yards and three touchdowns and rushed for 114 yards  against the Volunteers.

It’s no wonder he came through with such a big performance — the Missouri coaches were using the threat of Franklin’s return as a motivation for Mauk to step up his game.

They say if you have two quarterbacks, you don’t have a quarterback, but that’s not the case for Missouri right now. Whether they start Franklin or Mauk, the Tigers should be in good shape as they start the stretch run to capture the SEC East title.

SEC shut out of AP top five for first time in half a decade

Stephen F. Austin visits Amon G. Carter Stadium to play the No. 3 TCU Horned Frogs.
AP Photo

The polls are meaningless. Especially any poll that isn’t the College Football Playoff top 25 and even then, as the TCU learned late last season, even the penultimate ranking is as meaningless as the paper they’re metaphorically written on.

Still, they’re catnip to college football fans and observers. Place them in front of us and we can’t help but gnaw on them.

And with that said, a bit of milestone was reached in Sunday’s Associated Press Top 25, as the SEC was completely shut out of the top five.

That group breaks down as follows:

  1. Ohio State
  2. TCU
  3. Baylor
  4. Michigan State
  5. Utah

An SEC free top five hasn’t happened in nearly five full years; October 10, 2010 was the last time such a thing occurred. Oddly enough, two of the same five culprits occupied that ranking as well:

  1. Ohio State
  2. Oregon
  3. Boise State
  4. TCU
  5. Nebraska

Underscoring the lesson of the first paragraph, eventual national champion Auburn checked in at No. 6. Those Tigers moved up a spot the following week and never looked back.

None of this means anything at all, until it does. But that doesn’t mean we can’t have some fun along the way.

Georgia loses ILB Reggie Carter for the season

Reggie Carter, Charone Peake
AP Photo
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After battling to get on the field throughout the season’s first five weeks, Georgia is shutting down inside linebacker Reggie Carter for the rest of the year, Dawgs head coach Mark Richt confirmed Sunday evening.

Carter fought shoulder problems throughout the year, and saw action in only one of Georgia’s first five games. A junior, Carter will be eligible for a medical redshirt.

The Snellville, Ga., native recorded 28 tackles in 12 appearances in 2014 and eight tackles in eight appearances as a freshman in 2013. UAB transfer Jake Ganus started in the spot many pegged to Carter before injure ruptured his season.

Carter totaled two stops in one appearance this season.