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Ex-UGA QB Jacob Park wins Iowa State backup job by injury default

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There was a fairly decent chance that Jacob Park would’ve landed on the No. 2 quarterback spot on Iowa State’s depth chart anyway.  Thanks to an injury, he’s wrapped that job up.

Head coach Matt Campbell confirmed this past week that Zeb Noland sustained an unspecified knee injury that will sideline him for the entire 2016 season.  Noland suffered the injury in a non-contact drill during a Thursday practice, leading to speculation that the true freshman tore an ACL.

Noland and Park had been battling to be the backup to starter Joel Lanning.

We look forward to having him back,” Campbell said. “He should be full strength by the time we start spring practice.

“It’s just one of those things that’s part of football and fortunately we’ve got depth at that position. Zeb was really playing well for us and doing some great things, but it’ll give him a chance to kind of sit back now and really take some time to study. The silver lining in all of this is he’ll come back, he’ll be 110 percent when he comes back and it’ll be nothing that has longterm effects on Zeb and his performance going forward, so that’s huge for us.”

Noland was a three-star 2016 signee.  He enrolled early at ISU and participated in spring practice.

Park, meanwhile, is a transfer from Georgia by way of the junior college ranks who will man the backup job after a season away from the sport.  Park did not play football in 2015, instead focusing on academics at Trident Technical College in Charleston, SC.

In mid-June of 2015, it was confirmed that Park would be transferring from Georgia.  Two weeks later, he visited Alabama, although nothing ever came of that interest.  247Sports also reports that park had conversations with Pittsburgh and Virginia Tech before opting for ISU.

A four-star member of UGA’s 2014 recruiting class, Park was rated as the No. 12 pro-style quarterback in the country; the No. 4 player at any position in the state of South Carolina; and the No. 229 player overall according to Rivals.com.  Park worked mainly with the scout team during his only season with the Bulldogs.

With Noland sidelined, the No. 3 spot will likely fall to Kyle Kempt.  Kempt began his collegiate career at Oregon State before going the JUCO route.

Dick MacPherson’s grandson one of six added to Sean Lewis’ first Kent State staff

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Sean Lewis‘ first staff at Kent State will come armed with a famous coaching surname.

The football program announced Monday that Lewis has hired a total of six new assistants. One of the coaching sextet is Mackey MacPherson, the grandson of former Syracuse head coach Dick MacPherson.

The younger MacPherson will coach the Golden Flashes running backs after spending the past two seasons as an offensive graduate assistant with the Orange.  Both Lewis and MacPherson were on Dino Babers‘ staff at the ‘Cuse.

The other full-time assistant hired by Lewis are as follows:

Zac Barton — special teams coordinator
Brian Cochran — defensive line
Jon Cooley — safeties coach
Matt Middleton — wide receivers coach
Bill O’Boyle — offensive line

Nearly two weeks ago, Lewis announced the hiring of his coordinators on both sides of the ball.

Western Kentucky’s Joel Iyiegbuniwe declares early for draft

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There’s a new leader in the clubhouse for “Early Entrant With the Most Vowels in his Surname.”

On his personal Twitter account over the weekend, Joel Iyiegbuniwe announced that he is leaving Western Kentucky early and making himself available for the April NFL draft. The linebacker, a native of Bowling Green, Kent., stated that he came to his decision “[a]fter much thought, prayer and discussion with my family, coaches and advisors.”

This past season, Iyiegbuniwe led the Hilltoppers in tackles with 117, tackles for loss with 11.5 and forced fumbles with three. He was named first-team All-Conference USA following the regular season.

Including last season, Iyiegbuniwe had started 27 straight games at outside linebacker for the Hilltoppers.

Today is the deadline for draft-eligible players to inform the NFL of their intentions.

Kent State announces signing of ex-Auburn QB Woody Barrett

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One day after Woody Barrett announced that he has found a new college football home, the school has confirmed as much.

Kent State sent out a press release Monday evening acknowledging that Barrett has signed with the football program. After spending the 2017 season at a Mississippi junior college, the quarterback will be eligible to play immediately in 2018.

Counting this coming season, Barrett will have three years of eligibility remaining.

“We’re excited about Woody’s potential, his ability and his raw tools both throwing and running the football,” new Golden Flashes head coach Sean Lewis said in a statement. “And we’re excited to have him on campus to be training with our team as we get ready for spring ball.”

A four-star member of Auburn’s 2016 recruiting class, Barrett was rated as the No. 6 dual-threat quarterback in the country that cycle. He took a redshirt as a true freshman, then opted to transfer from the Tigers in May of last year, ultimately ending up at the JUCO level.

At Copiah-Lincoln Community College this past season, Barrett passed for 1,294 yards and eight touchdowns in nine games, adding another 485 and six on the ground.

Michigan confirms hiring of Sherrone Moore as TEs coach

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One hole on Jim Harbaugh‘s coaching staff has been filled.

The football program confirmed Monday that Sherrone Moore has been hired and will serve as Harbaugh’s tight ends coach. Moore will replace Greg Frey, who moved on to a job on Willie Taggart‘s staff at Florida State.

The 31-year-old Moore — he’ll turn 32 in early February — spent the past four seasons coaching tight ends at Central Michigan. This past season, he added the title of assistant head coach as well as taking over as the MAC program’s recruiting coordinator.

Moore began his coaching career as an offensive graduate assistant at Louisville from 2009-12. He was promoted to tight ends coach in 2012, spending that season as well as 2013 in that role.