Florida v Miami

39 DBs make up Thorpe Award watch list


The interminable Watch List Week (Part I) continues unabated Friday morning, with the Jim Thorpe Award the latest to release its group.

Given annually to the nation’s top defensive back, the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame announced earlier today a watch list consisting of 39 players. Four semifinalists for last year’s award — Alabama’s Landon Collins, Oregon’s Ifo Ekpre-Olomu, Florida’s Vernon Hargreaves (pictured) and Ole Miss’ Cody Prewitt — are a part of this initial list.

The three finalists for last year’s trophy — winner Darqueze Dennard of Michigan State, Justin Gilbert of Oklahoma State and Lamarcus Joyner of Florida State — were all selected in the May NFL draft.

All 10 FBS conferences were represented, led by five apiece from the ACC, Big Ten, Conference USA and Mountain West. The AAC, Pac-12 and SEC had four each.

A total of five schools placed two players apiece on the watch list: Arkansas State, Boise State, Florida State, Michigan State and UCF.  Of the 39 players, 19 are seniors, 13 are juniors and just seven are sophomores.

Below is the complete 2014 Thorpe Award watch list:

Kevin Byard, Middle Tenn, Jr.
Bryce Callahan, Rice, Sr.
Ibraheim Campbell, Northwestern, Sr.
Sam Carter, TCU, Sr.
Jeremy Cash, Duke, Jr.
Donald Celiscar, Western Michigan, Sr.
Landon Collins, Alabama, Jr.
Blake Countess, Michigan, Jr.
Su’a Cravens, USC, So.
Donte Deayon, Boise State, Jr.
Quandre Diggs, Texas, Sr.
Lorenzo Doss, Tulane, Jr.
Kurtis Drummond, Michigan State, Sr.
Ifo Ekpre-Olomu, Oregon, Sr.
Kendall Fuller, Virginia Tech, So.
Clayton Geathers, UCF, Sr.
Jacoby Glenn, UCF, So.
Vernon Hargreaves, Florida, So.
Anthony Harris, Virginia, Sr.
Rocky Hayes, Arkansas State, Jr
Jeremy Ioane, Boise State, Sr.
Jordan Lucas, Penn State, Jr.
Marcus Peters, Washington, Jr.
Cody Prewitt, Ole Miss, Sr.
Jalen Ramsey, Florida State, So.
Jordan Richards, Stanford, Sr.
Zack Sanchez, Oklahoma, So.
Derron Smith, Fresno State, Sr.
D’Joun Smith, Florida Atlantic, Sr.
Trevon Stewart, Houston, Jr.
Brian Suite, Utah State, Sr.
Cam Thomas, WKU, Sr.
Triston Wade, UTSA, Sr.
Ryland Ward, Bowling Green, Jr.
Trae Waynes, Michigan State, Jr.
Tre’Davious White, LSU, So.
J.J. Whittaker, San Diego State, Sr.
PJ Williams, Florida State, Jr.
Sterling Young, Arkansas State, Sr.

Auburn dismisses WR D’haquille Williams

at Georgia Dome on September 5, 2015 in Atlanta, Georgia.
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The turbulent career of one of the most talented wide receivers in the country, at least at Auburn, has come to an end.

Monday night, Gus Malzahn surprisingly — and not so surprisingly — announced that D’haquille Williams has been dismissed from the football program. No specific reason for the dismissal was given.

“When individuals fail to meet the expectations of our program, there has to be consequences,” Malzahn said in a statement. “I gave D’haquille the chance to prove himself. I am disappointed that it did not work out.”

Williams was suspended from AU’s bowl game against Wisconsin last year because of unspecified violations of team rules. After participating in spring practice, he was suspended for the early part of summer camp before being reinstated in the middle of August.

The senior had played in all four games this season, catching 12 passes for 147 yards. The former total is second on the team, the latter third.

Despite playing in just 10 of 13 games last season — in addition to the suspension, he missed two games with a knee injury — Williams led the Tigers with 45 receptions and five receiving touchdowns. His 730 receiving yards were second on the team.

The media tapped him as a first-team All-SEC preseason selection coming off that season.

USC’s Pat Haden sent UCLA’s Myles Jack a post-injury letter

LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 03:  USC Athletic Director Pat Haden addresses the audience during the press conference to introduce Andy Enfield as USC's new basketball head coach on April 3, 2013 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Victor Decolongon/Getty Images)
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Pat Haden may have a growing number of detractors in Southern California, but that hasn’t stopped him from showing a personal touch off the field.

Myles Jack, one of the most talented linebackers in not only the Pac-12 but also the country, sustained a season-ending knee injury in UCLA’s Week 3 win over BYU.  That injury may or may not have ended Jack’s collegiate career as he will be eligible for the 2016 NFL draft.

On his Instagram account Monday, Jack shared a letter of support from one of his admirers, who also happens to be the athletic director of UCLA’s bitter rival USC.

Pat Haden Myles Jack

While it’s not the handwritten variety one Big 12 coach would prefer, it’s still a classy gesture nonetheless on the part of Haden.