Colorado State Rams

NORMAN, OK - NOVEMBER 10: President of the University of Oklahoma David Boren and Head Coach Bob Stoops of the Oklahoma Sooners talk before the game against the Baylor Bears November 10, 2012 at Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium in Norman, Oklahoma. Oklahoma defeated Baylor 42-34. (Photo by Brett Deering/Getty Images)
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Despite report to contrary, president David Boren says Oklahoma hasn’t made up mind on Big 12 expansion

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It wouldn’t be the Big 12 without a little drama, now would it?

Tuesday, Pete Thamel of SI.com reported it’s believed that Oklahoma president David Boren, long thought to be a major proponent of expanding the Big 12 beyond 10 teams, “has reversed course on his view of expansion.” This report comes nearly two weeks after T. Boone Pickens‘ BFF infamously — and very surprisingly — tapped the expansion brakes.

“I wouldn’t take expansion as a given,” Boren said Sept. 14. “I wouldn’t take it as a sure thing.”

According to Thamel’s report, it appears that BYU, long a favorite of Boren, and the uproar over its honor code has caused Boren, and thus the university, to shift gears when it comes to expansion. Additionally, OU’s regents are reportedly not in favor of expansion and are pressuring Boren “to convey that message.”

That shift, at least what he’s putting out there for public consumption, is news to Boren.

“I do not know where the speculation came from,” Boren said in a statement to ESPN.com, “but Oklahoma has not yet taken a position on expansion.”

It was thought that expansion could be decided at a meeting of chancellors and presidents in Irving, Tex., in the middle of next month, although that could be pushed to the end of the year, if not the beginning of 2017. A total of 11 schools made the cut as “finalists” should the Big 12 expand, with those nearly dozen schools presenting their cases over the past couple of weeks.

Of the 11, seven come from the AAC — Cincinnati, Houston, SMU, Tulane, UCF, UConn, USF — two from the Mountain West — Air Force, Colorado State — and one from Conference USA — Rice. The lone remaining school, BYU, is a football independent.

Colorado State to start third different QB in first three games

DENVER, CO - SEPTEMBER 2:  Quarterback Nick Stevens #7 of the Colorado State Rams passes against the Colorado Buffaloes under pressure from defensive end Jordan Carrell #92 in the first quarter of a game at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on September 2, 2016 in Denver, Colorado.  (Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)
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Once again, there will be a change at the quarterback position for Colorado State.

Junior Nick Stephens (pictured), the incumbent who was named second-team All-MWC last season, started the opener against Colorado, but was benched after going 6-20 for 31 yards and two interceptions. Faton Bauta, the graduate transfer from Georgia, started the Week 2 win over UT-San Antonio and continued the poor play at the position, going 6-17 for 82 yards.

Hoping the third time is a charm, head coach Mike Bobo announced that Collin Hill will start Saturday’s game against Northern Colorado.  Hill is an 18-year-old true freshman who was an early enrollee and participated in spring practice.

Bobo stated that he nearly pulled the trigger and named Hill the starter ahead of the season opener, but decided Stephens’ experience should win out.  Now, faced with a passing “attack” that’s last nationally in completion percentage and pass efficiency as well as 126th out of 128 teams in yards per game, Bobo has decided the future is now.

“I talk about it all the time. I talk about competition and having to do your job, but I feel comfortable with him going forward,” Bobo said in explaining the decision. “I expect him to play well, I expect us to improve in our passing game and improve offensively. Hopefully we’ll do enough to put ourselves in a position to win the ball game on Saturday.”

In the UTSA win, Hill hit on two of his six passes for 26 yards.

Former Colorado State RB Treyous Jarrells explains why he quit football for marijuana

FORT COLLINS, CO - SEPTEMBER 12:  Treyous Jarrells #3 of the Colorado State Rams carries the ball and is tackled by Jonathan Celestin #13 of the Minnesota Golden Gophers at Sonny Lubick Field at Hughes Stadium on September 12, 2015 in Fort Collins, Colorado.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
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The Coloradoan has a fantastic story up on former Colorado State running back Treyous Jarrells, who stopped playing football so he could continue to use marijuana (which is legal in the state of Colorado but a banned substance for Colorado State student-athletes).

Before rushing to judgment, read the whole story in which Jarrells makes some good points about pain management, painkiller abuse and just the general ridiculousness of how weed is viewed.

He entered his first season at CSU in 2014 with lingering ailments, though he never showed it. Playing running back for 16 years, dating back to Pop Warner football in Florida, took a toll on Jarrells’ knees. A 2015 surgery to repair a torn meniscus helped, but the pain never went away. His body ached.

Concerns about addiction to narcotic prescription painkillers and the long-term side effects of over-the-counter remedies such as acetaminophen led Jarrells to self-medicate. He’d done so since high school.

It was a calculated risk to use marijuana, but Jarrells said had he not, he wouldn’t have been able to endure the pain football caused.

Read the whole story here.

Jarrells, who rushed for 478 yards and six touchdowns in his college career, said he quit the team so he wouldn’t be subjected to drug testing that could’ve put his scholarship at risk. He graduated from CSU and now operates a grow room in Colorado.

Mountain West to consider expansion with or without Big 12 poaching

SAN DIEGO, CA - DECEMBER 05:  The Championship Trophy, with the Offensive and Defensive Player of the Game trophies, sit on a table fieldside prior to the Mountain West Championship game between the San Diego State Aztecs and  the Air Force Falcons at Qualcomm Stadium on December 5, 2015 in San Diego, California.  (Photo by Kent Horner/Getty Images)
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Regardless of what happens in one Power Five conference, one Group of Five league could be expanding.

Air Force and Colorado State of the Mountain West have reportedly made the cut as the Big 12 looks to expand by at least two teams and possibly four.  That conference could make their expansion decision as early as the next month.

In the meantime, the MWC won’t be sitting idly by waiting to be poached as commissioner Craig Thompson confirmed Saturday that his conference will look to expand independent of what the Big 12 does.  And, more to the point, Thompson doesn’t hide the fact that the league would like a presence in the state of Texas.

“I can say this — and I said it at our [football] media days. We have a lot of people saying, ‘If there’s an opportunity to be in your league, we’re interested.’ So there are numbers there,” Thompson said, without getting into any specifics. “I’ve challenged our membership to think about expansion — with or without losing [current] members. Do we look east? Do we look at the state of Texas, for example?

“So that’s probably going to be something we have to confront this year.”

The Salt Lake Tribune mentions current Conference USA members North Texas, Rice, UTEP and UT-San Antonio as possibilities from the state of Texas.  The Sun Belt’s Arkansas State is also considered a viable option.

Report: Memphis no longer a candidate for Big 12 expansion

MEMPHIS, TN - OCTOBER 17:  Daniel Montiel #80 celebrates with Paxton Lynch #12 of the Memphis Tigers after a touchdown against the Ole Miss Rebels at Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium on October 17, 2015 in Memphis, Tennessee.  The Tigers defeated the Rebels 37-24.  (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
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The Big 12’s list of potential expansion candidates appears to have shrunk by one notable name according to a recent ESPN report on Friday.

Sources told the network that the University of Memphis is the latest school to get cut from the Big 12’s list, which once numbered as many as 22 schools but is now down to a reported 11. The omission of the Tigers is bound to raise a few eyeballs as the athletic department has made significant strides in recent years and has the backing of powerful local booster Fred Smith and his FedEx empire.

The ESPN report noted that the 11 schools will begin meeting in Dallas with Big 12 officials starting next week, with a possible decision on expansion coming as soon as a board of directors meeting on October 17.

In addition to the notable names like Memphis and Boise State who are out of the running to join the Big 12, the names of the schools that could get an invite is just as notable. The usual suspects of BYU, Cincinnati and Houston were among the names ESPN reported are in the final 11, along with Air Force, UCF, UConn, Colorado State, Rice, South Florida, SMU and Tulane.

Interestingly, the report also said Memphis offering to take less revenue from the Big 12 actually may have hurt the school in the long run because the league wanted teams that could strengthen the conference as opposed to being “propped up” by an invite.

The entire Big 12 expansion process is seemingly never-ending but it appears that things are starting to move along now that the list of prospective schools has been riddled down. It remains anybody’s guess as to whether the Big 12 even expands at all, or whether they add two or four teams. Given how the process has played out so far, it might be wise to expect the unexpected.

Just ask Memphis.