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Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby’s contract extended through 2025

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The future of the Big 12 conference still seems a little murky but one thing remains clear: commissioner Bob Bowlsby will be in charge no matter which way things go.

The league announced on Friday morning that Bowlsby’s contract was extended through 2025, keeping him at Big 12 headquarters through the next round of television negotiations and right up to the expiration date on the conference’s grant of rights.

“This is an important time for college athletics. This is an important time for the Big 12,” West Virginia President Gordon Gee, the chairman of the conference’s board of directors, said in a video statement. “To have a valiant and committed leader and someone who understands athletics as well as anyone in this country leading our conference is something that is very much important to the league and to the individual schools and I believe to college athletics.”

Bowlsby notably guided the Big 12 through on-again, off-again rounds of conference expansion the past few years and played a big role in bringing a football championship game and new tiebreaker scenarios to the league since he took over in 2012. The former Stanford and Iowa athletic director will be 73 at the end of his new contract, which is paying him right under $2.7 million a year according to USA Today.

Shane Buechele taking majority of first-team reps at QB for Texas

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As expected, there will be no channeling of Lou Gehrig and Wally Pipp in Austin.  Probably.

Shane Buechele suffered an injury to his right (throwing) shoulder in Texas’ season-opening loss to Maryland. Ever since, Tom Herman has stated very firmly that Buechele would return to his starting job when healthy.

After watching Buechele take what the Austin American-Statesman‘s estimated to be 60 percent of the snaps with the first-team offense in practice Tuesday, the first-year UT head coach pronounced that there’s “[n]o Wally Pipp for the moment.”

Sam Ehlinger, who started both games since Buechele’s injury, took the rest of the snaps with the starting offense.

“Thought both of them looked good,” Herman said according to the American-Statesman. “I asked Shane towards the end of practice and he said, ‘Coach I feel good.’ So we’ll continue to monitor his progress. Last week, he was a bit sore each day after throwing. But with a couple of days off here, hopefully we can get that soreness out.”

Herman stopped short of naming Buechele the starter in their next game, against Iowa State, although the Longhorns have a bye this weekend before squaring off with the Cyclones on Thursday the 28th.

In his two starts, the true freshman Ehlinger completed 36-of-67 passes for 520 yards, three touchdowns and a pair of interceptions. Both of those picks came in UT’s near-upset of USC in Week 3.

Oklahoma’s Amani Bledsoe sues NCAA over PED suspension, lost eligibility

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Amani Bledsoe has gone to court in an attempt to get something back that the NCAA has, for now, taken from him.

In October of last year, Bob Stoops confirmed that Bledsoe had been indefinitely suspended from the Oklahoma football team. While the then-head coach declined to confirm the reason or reasons behind the suspension, it was subsequently reported that the defensive lineman had violated the NCAA’s policy on performance enhancing drugs and would be suspended for one calendar year.

According to Tulsa World, Bledsoe filed a lawsuit last month in which he’s asking the courts to compel the NCAA to lift his suspension and give him back a year of eligibility. The NCAA had previously denied Bledsoe’s appeal of its initial ruling.

Bledsoe claims in the lawsuit that he had taken the protein powder, Inner Armour, of one of his teammates after he had run out of his own. Bledsoe was then subjected to random drug testing by the NCAA, which found that the sample he submitted tested positive for a substance called clomiphene, which the World describes as “commonly used to treat fertility problems in women but can also be used as a performance-enhancer because of its estrogen-blocking qualities.” A second sample tested positive for the same substance as well.

From the newspaper’s report:

The lawsuit states Bledsoe submitted the proteins and multi-vitamins he had recently taken and submitted them to athletic trainer Scott Anderson. Bledsoe and OU submitted the substances to an independent laboratory in Nashville, Tenn.

Testing revealed the Inner Armour substance contained clomiphene, but Bledsoe’s other powder and vitamins did not. After the testing, the laboratory purchased and tested another container of Inner Armour, and the test came back negative.

Bledsoe is eligible to return from the suspension for the Oct. 7 game against Iowa State. If the suspension isn’t lifted by the courts, the lineman will have missed a total of 10 games — the last six of the 2016 season, the first four of this one.

A four-star member of OU’s 2016 recruiting class, Bledsoe was rated as the No. 8 strongside end in the country; the No. 2 player at any position in the state of Kansas; and No. 155 on‘s composite board. As a true freshman, Bledsoe played in six games and was credited with three tackles.

Iowa overcomes 10-point fourth-quarter deficit, beats Iowa State to keep hold of Cy-Hawk Trophy

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It wasn’t easy, but Iowa has maintained its stranglehold on the coveted Cy-Hawk Trophy

Trailing 31-21 at the start of the fourth quarter, Iowa outscored in-state rival Iowa State 23-10 the rest of the way to claim a 44-41 win in overtime.  It marked the Hawkeyes’ third-straight win in the series, although the previous two had come by a combined score of 73-20.

This was also just the second overtime game played between the two programs, the first coming in 2011 (a 44-41 ISU win).

After tying the score at 31-all with 5:16 to play on a Miguel Recinos 23-yard field goal, the Hawkeyes could only watch as, two plays later, Georgia transfer Jacob Park connected with Hakeem Butler on a 74-yard touchdown pass to reclaim the lead.  After an exchange of punts, Akrum Wadley nimbly scored on a pretty 46-yard pass-and-run from Nathan Stanley with 1:09 remaining in regulation that was mostly run.

In overtime, an ISU field goal on its first possession was trumped by Stanley’s fifth touchdown pass of the day, this one a five-yarder to Ihmir Smith-Marsette.

Wadley led all rushers with 118 yards on the ground, and accounted for 190 yards of total offense.  Stanley threw for 333 yards, while Park passed for 347 in a losing effort.

Iowa now leads the all-time series 43-22.

LSU has FBS-high 51 former players on NFL opening-day rosters

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As the college game gets set to head into its second week of the 2017 season Saturday, the pro version is getting ready to kick off its latest season in full on Sunday as well. And, given how the conference has dominated drafts for more than a decade, it’s far from surprising to see SEC teams very well-represented on NFL rosters amidst that kickoff.

In data compiled by the NCAA, there are a total of 285 schools representing all levels of college football whose players are currently on NFL opening-day rosters. The Association makes sure to note that its “list includes players on active rosters, injury reserved lists, practice squads and the commissioner’s exempt list.”

And the FBS team with the most players currently on big boy rosters? LSU, with 51. Florida and USC are next with 45 each, followed by 44 apiece for Alabama and Miami. Ohio State (42) and Florida State (40) are the only other programs with 40 or more.

Four of the five Power Five conferences are represented in that Top 10.  Oklahoma, with 33, is the best the Big 12 has to offer.

Boise State is the first Group of Five team on the list with 21 former players in the show, more than the likes of TCU (20), Mississippi State (17) and Oklahoma State (13). Harvard also has nine players on current rosters, which is tied with Indiana and ahead of Wake Forest (eight), Washington State (eight), Iowa State (six) and Kansas (six).

New Mexico State, which is ticketed for FBS independence next season, has the fewest former players amongst FBS teams with two.

For the complete roster rundown, click HERE.