Category: NC State Wolfpack

FORT WORTH, TX - OCTOBER 03:  Trevone Boykin #2 of the TCU Horned Frogs looks for an open receiver against the Texas Longhorns in the second quarter at Amon G. Carter Stadium on October 3, 2015 in Fort Worth, Texas.  (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
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Unitas Award whittles watch list in half down to 15

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You know how I know we’re gradually creeping up on the end of another regular season?  Watch lists are being whittled.

The first major honor to do so is the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award, which is given out annually to the best quarterback who is a college senior or fourth-year junior.  The preseason watch list was 30 quarterbacks strong; the newest list has been cut in half to 15.

The most recent list includes one of the top Heisman contenders (TCU’s Trevone Boykin) and the top two nationally in passing yards (Bowling Green’s Matt Johnson, Western Kentucky’s Brandon Doughty), as well as a quarterback who’s closing in on the all-time FBS record for rushing touchdowns (Navy’s Keenan Reynolds).

The Pac-12 leads all conferences with three watch listers, followed by two each from the AAC, ACC and Big Ten.  The SEC has as many players (one, Mississippi State’s Dak Prescott) as the FCS (North Dakota State’s Carson Wentz).

Last year’s winner was Marcus Mariota of Oregon.

Trevone Boykin, TCU
Jacoby Brissett, NC State
Connor Cook, Michigan State
Brandon Doughty, WKU
Everett Golson, Florida State
Kevin Hogan, Stanford
Matt Johnson, Bowling Green
Cody Kessler, USC
Paxton Lynch, Memphis
Dak Prescott, Mississippi State
Keenan Reynolds, Navy
Nate Sudfeld, Indiana
Carson Wentz, N. Dakota State
Marquise Williams, North Carolina
Travis Wilson, Utah

Hurricane threat pushes start of Michigan-Maryland way up

IN SPACE - SEPTEMBER 30:  In this handout from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Hurricane Joaquin is seen chruning in the Caribbean September 30, 2015. Joaquin was upgraded to a category 1 hurricane early on September 30. The exact track has yet to be determined, but there is a  possibity of landfall in the U.S. anywhere from North Carolina to the Northeast.  (Photo by NOAA via Getty Images)
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With Hurricane Joaquin either headed toward the United States or out into the Atlantic Ocean but still impacting the Eastern seaboard, depending on which computer model is the weather flavor of the minutes, the system has the potential to impact a handful of college football games this weekend.

In fact, the threat of it has already impacted one game.

Due to expected adverse weather, Michigan announced early Thursday afternoon, the start time for its game Saturday against Maryland in College Park has been moved up to noon ET.  The Wolverines and Terrapins had originally been scheduled to kick-off at 8 p.m. ET.

The stated reason for the move is “the potential impact of Hurricane Joaquin.”

“The weather experts are still dealing with uncertain probabilities for the course of Hurricane Joaquin,” UM athletic director Jim Hackett said in a statement. “Thus we remain vigilant on developments and will err on the side of safety for all participants and fans.”

As a side effect of the Michigan-Maryland move, the Big Ten announced that “Nebraska’s game with Illinois, which was scheduled to kick off at 2:42 p.m. (central), will now kick off at 3:02 p.m.” The delay is to accommodate any potential weather-related delays that could arise during earlier games.

Other games that could potentially be affected by Hurricane Joaquin include, among others, Pittsburgh-Virginia Tech, Louisville-North Carolina State, Boston College-Duke, Florida State-Wake Forest and the huge Notre Dame-Clemson matchup. Thus far, though, none of those games have been impacted, although that could obviously change over the next 24-48 hours as the system moves closer to landfall, if that’s indeed its eventual path.

In fact, one of the schools hosting one of the games mentioned seems to have adopted a “bring it on” attitude when it comes to the weather.

N.C. State gives the boot to Shadrach Thornton

Tyler Hunter, Shadrach Thornton
Associated Press

As it turns out, Shadrach Thornton‘s third legal strike will be his last at North Carolina State.

Late Wednesday afternoon, the university announced that Thornton had been dismissed from Dave Doeren‘s football program.  The move comes the same day that reports surfaced regarding the running back’s involvement in a moped accident — he allegedly struck and injured a pedestrian — that ended with his arrest and multiple misdemeanor charges.

“It’s an unfortunate set of circumstances, but we’ve made the decision to dismiss Shadrach from our program,” the head coach said in a statement. “We will continue to support him academically, and help him earn his degree.”

This was Thornton’s third legal incident in a little over two years.

In 2013, he was suspended for the opener after being charged with violence against a female. He was indefinitely suspended in December of that year for another run-in with the law, and reinstated in August of last year.

On top of that, he was suspended for the first two games of the 2015 season, reportedly for failing a second drug test.

If Thornton could stay out of trouble he’d be one of the most productive backs in the country.  Thornton has led the Wolfpack in rushing each of the last three seasons, with his totals increasing from 694 yards to 798 to 907 last season. In August, he was named preseason first-team All-ACC.

Despite missing two full games, Thornton’s 203 rushing yards are second on the Wolfpack this season.

This is Thornton’s final season of eligibility, meaning his collegiate career has come to an end.