Texas loses RB Johnathan Gray and DL Chris Whaley for rest of season

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Texas got some bad news when it learned that running back Johnathan Gray and defensive tackle Chris Whaley have both been lost for the season after getting hurt in the Longhorns’ 47-40 overtime win over West Virginia on Saturday.

Gray suffered an injury to his right achilles that will require surgery. He currently leads Texas in rushing with 780 yards and four touchdowns. Whaley injured his knee and finishes his season with 21 tackles, five tackles for loss, two sacks and an interceptions that he returned for a touchdown.

Luckily for Texas, it has a lot of depth at running back and defensive tackle. Junior Malcolm Brown has 442 yards and eight touchdowns and should take over most of the carries at running back, while junior Desmond Jackson and redshirt freshman Hassan Ridgeway are more than capable replacements for Whaley.

 

 

NCAA grants sixth season to Kent State’s leading tackler

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The early signing period is still a day away, but Kent State’s defense for next season has already been bolstered.

On his social media accounts recently, Matt Bahr announced that he has been granted another year of eligibility by the NCAA.  The linebacker will be able to use that sixth season in 2019, which will serve as his final year of eligibility.

Bahr didn’t play at all as a true freshman in 2014, then was sidelined for all but two games of the 2017 season because of injury.

Bahr’s 91 tackles this season were tied for the team lead, while his 5½ tackles for loss were tied for third and his three sacks tied for second.  He was also tied for third on the Golden Flashes in pass breakups with six and led with a pair of forced fumbles.

This year, Bahr was named as a semifinalist for both the Wuerffel Trophy and Campbell Trophy, the latter colloquially referred to as the “Academic Heisman.”

Starting Nevada safety transfers to BYU

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Nevada’s secondary loss will turn into BYU’s gain.

In early December, it was reported that Nephi Sewell will be transferring from Nevada.  Less than two weeks later, Sewell took to Twitter over the weekend to announce that he has decided to continue his collegiate playing career at BYU.

The move serves as a homecoming for Sewell as the defensive back played his high school football in the state of Utah.

As a sophomore this season, Sewell started all 10 games in which he played after starting eight games in 2017. His 53 tackles in 2018 were good for sixth on the team.

Sewell’s older brother, Gabe Sewell, is a junior linebacker for Nevada and currently leads the Wolf Pack in tackles with 85.  His younger brother, Penei Sewell, is a freshman offensive lineman at Oregon.

Kentucky’s Josh Allen adds fourth national trophy honor

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When it’s all said and done, Josh Allen is going to need a bigger trophy cabinet — or at least significantly expand his current one.

Monday, it was announced that the Kentucky senior was named as the 2018 recipient of the Jack Lambert Award. That trophy is handed out annually by the Touchdown Club of Columbus (OH) and given to the national linebacker of the year.

Previously this awards season, Allen had been named as the winner of the Bronko Nagurski Award (HERE) and Chuck Bednarik Award (HERE) as well as the recipient of the Ronnie Lott IMPACT Trophy (HERE). He also earned unanimous first-team All-American honors.

Allen’s 14 sacks this season set the football program’s single-season record, while his 28.5 career sacks are the most ever for a member of the Wildcats.

Utah OC Troy Taylor named head coach at FCS Sacramento State

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For the second time since the 2018 regular season came to an end, Kyle Whittingham has seen one of his assistant coaches leave for a head-coaching job.

Exactly a week ago, Utah State announced that Utah associate head coach Gary Andersen was returning to again lead the Aggies.  Monday, Sacramento State announced that Troy Taylor has been hired as the FCS program’s next head football coach.

Taylor, who spent two seasons as Whittingham’s offensive coordinator, was the starting quarterback at Cal in the late eighties after playing his high school football in the state of California.  He also began his coaching career at the high school level near Sacramento.

“I am thrilled to be the new head football coach at Sacramento State,” Taylor said in a statement. “My family and I are excited to move back home and take on the challenge of building the Hornet Football program into something the city can be very proud. I want to thank President Nelsen, Mark Orr and the rest of the search committee for giving me this opportunity.”

With bowl season left, Utah is sixth in the Pac-12 and 67th nationally in scoring 28.7 points per game.  In Taylor’s first season in charge of the offense, they averaged 29.5 ppg.

Whittingham has already replaced Andersen with former Ute football player Sione Po’uha.