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Alabama holds firm to top spot in coaches poll; Big Ten has four of top 10

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Following a dismantling of the USC Trojans, No.1  Alabama remains atop the latest Amway Coaches Poll, released this afternoon. The Crimson Tide locked up 62 first-place votes to stay comfortably ahead of No. 2 Clemson. The top two spot sin the coaches poll were unchanged from last week, but there was plenty of movement after that after this wild opening weekend to the college football season.

No. 3 Florida State and No. 4 Ohio State each moved up one spot in the coaches poll, followed by No. 5 Stanford and No. 6 Michigan moving up two spots each. No. 7 Houston jumped up six spots, moving ahead of No. 8 Michigan State in the process. No. 9 Georgia was bumped up seven spots as teams took a free fall out of the top 10, and No. 10 Iowa rounded out the top 10 this week. That puts four teams from the Big Ten in the top 10 of this week’s coaches poll.

No. 13 Oklahoma, No. 21 Notre Dame and No. 22 LSU each fell by at least 10 spots in this week’s poll following losses. LSU took the biggest hit, dropping 16 spots following a loss to Wisconsin in Green Bay. Notre Dame took a harsh hit for an overtime loss at Texas, falling 12 spots. No. 18 Ole Miss fell just six spots after blowing a big lead against Florida State. Teams dropping despite a win included Oregon and Tennessee.

Here is the full coaches poll, with first-place votes noted.

  1. Alabama (62)
  2. Clemson (2)
  3. Florida State
  4. Ohio State
  5. Stanford
  6. Michigan
  7. Houston
  8. Michigan State
  9. Georgia
  10. Iowa
  11. Washington
  12. TCU
  13. Oklahoma
  14. Tennessee
  15. Louisville
  16. Wisconsin
  17. Oklahoma State
  18. Ole Miss
  19. Baylor
  20. Texas
  21. Notre Dame
  22. LSU
  23. Oregon
  24. Texas A&M
  25. Florida

Others Receiving Votes: Miami (Fla.) 108; North Carolina 62; Utah 61; Boise State 52; UCLA 38; Nebraska 37; Arkansas 21; Auburn 16; Brigham Young 15; San Diego State 12; Western Kentucky 11; Navy 10; Pittsburgh 9; West Virginia 8; North Carolina State 7; Southern California 6; South Florida 5; Duke 4; South Alabama 3; Southern Mississippi 2; Colorado 1; Appalachian State 1; Toledo 1.

Bill Snyder adds two former K-State football players to Wildcats staff

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As has become customary, Bill Snyder has added familiar faces to his Kansas State staff.

K-State announced late Tuesday morning that Snyder has hired former Wildcats football players Zach Hanson and Eric Hickson.  The former will serve as tight ends coach as well as help with the offensive line, while the latter will coach running backs.

In its release, the football program noted that K-State now has seven full-time coaches who played for the Wildcats, the most former players coaching at their alma mater among all FBS staffs.

“I am pleased to have Zach and Eric back with us,” Snyder said in a statement. “Both have proven their capabilities not only as very successful position coaches and teachers, but also in the development of quality and valued young men. They both have a genuine interest in the life skills enhancement of those they work with. Having also been highly successful student-athletes in our program, they believe in and understand our program.”

Hickson spent the past three seasons as the running backs coach at Akron.  That was Hickson’s first coaching job at the FBS level.

A running back at K-State, he left the program in 1998 as the school’s all-time leading rusher; he now stands fifth on that list.

After Hanson finished up his playing career at K-State in 2011, he spent four years at his alma mater (2012-15) as a graduate assistant and quality control coach.  The past two seasons, he was a graduate assistant working with special teams and tight ends at North Carolina.

This will also be Hanson’s first full-time job at the FBS level.

Terry McLaurin’s decision to stay means Ohio State’s top six receivers returning in 2018

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With Ohio State breaking in a new starting quarterback in 2018, this is latest in what’s been a long line of welcome news for the Buckeyes.

Terry McLaurin confirmed on Instagram Monday night that he will be returning to the Buckeyes for another season.  The wide receiver was third on the Buckeyes last season with 29 receptions, 436 yards and six receiving touchdowns.

Thank you Lord for another opportunity. #last1

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Previously, wide receiver Johnnie Dixon, fourth on the team in receiving yards, announced his decision to return, as did OSU’s leading receiver in yards, H-back Parris Campbell. The Buckeyes’ leader in catches, K.J. Hill, could also have left early for the NFL.

With all of these decisions to stay, it means the Buckeyes will return its top six receivers in yards: Campbell (584), Hill (549), McLaurin (436), Dixon (422), Binjimen Victor (349) and Austin Mack (343). Those six also accounted for 29 of OSU’s 39 receiving touchdowns.

Tight end Marcus Baugh, who was fourth in receptions with 28 and seventh in yards with 304, is the most productive member of the passing game to depart as the senior has used up his eligibility.

Tennessee QB Quinten Dormady transferring from Vols

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Quinten Dormady began the 2017 season as Tennessee’s starting quarterback.  He’ll begin the 2018 season wearing a different uniform.

The erstwhile starter announced on his personal Twitter account Monday that, “[a]fter weeks of reflection, I’ve decided to transfer from Tennessee and transfer for my final year of eligibility.” As a graduate transfer, Dormady would be eligible to play this season at another FBS program.

In starting the first five games of this past season, Dormady had accounted for eight turnovers, six of which were the result of interceptions. Five of those picks came in losses to Florida (three) and Georgia (two).

Coming off a bye, redshirt freshman Jarrett Guarantano started the Week 7 loss to South Carolina after Dormady was benched following the loss to UGA.  Prior to the Week 9 road trip to Kentucky, it was reported that Dormady would be sidelined the remainder of the year because of a shoulder injury.

Dormady completed 76-of-137 passes (55.5%) for 925 yards, six touchdowns and the six interceptions this past season.  The 6-4, 222-pound junior finishes the Vols portion of his playing career with 1,282 yards, seven touchdown and six picks.  He also ran the ball 22 times for a total of 21 yards.

Chip Kelly and UCLA land ex-Washington QB K.J. Carta-Samuels

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K.J. Carta-Samuels may have left Washington, but he’s not leaving the Pac-12.

Carta-Samuels brother, Austyn, revealed on his own personal Twitter account that K.J. will be transferring to UCLA. “Chip Kelly, you just got yourself a QB,” the recruiting coordinator at Missouri wrote.

The younger Carta-Samuels brother subsequently told CBSSports.com that Kelly is “a huge reason why” he chose to move on to the Bruins.

In early December, Carta-Samuels announced that he would be leaving Chris Petersen‘s Washington football program.

Carta-Samuels will be joining Kelly’s squad as a graduate transfer, which means he’ll be one of the players fighting for the right to replace three-year-starting quarterback Josh Rosen. Earlier this month, Rosen did the somewhat expected and left early for the NFL draft.

A four-star member of UW’s 2014 recruiting class, Carta-Samuels was rated as the No. 12 pro-style quarterback in the country and the No. 24 player at any position in the state of California. Budda Baker, a second-round pick in the 2017 NFL draft, was the only signee in the Huskies’ class that year rated higher than Carta-Samuels.

Carta-Samuels played in 25 games over the past three seasons. He ended the Huskies portion of his collegiate playing career with 310 yards, three touchdowns and one interception in completing 27-of-47 passes.