Nebraska, Michigan No. 1-2 in spring game attendance (so far)

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Spring football was a big deal at a pair of Big Ten institutions this month. Nebraska pulled in a crowd of over 76,000 fans this past weekend in Lincoln to see the spring debut of new head coach Mike Riley. The 76,881 Husker fans in attendance would have topped the nation’s leading spring game attendance number pulled in by Alabama a year ago. Seeing a new head coach make his spring debut was also a huge draw at the University of Michigan. The Wolverines are not traditionally a powerhouse when it comes to spring game attendance, but with an estimated crowd of 60,000 flowing through the ticket gates for a glimpse of the Jim Harbaugh era, Michigan has held on strong this spring.

As a reminder, not every school treats the end of the spring practice schedule in the same fashion. Some schools charge a small fee for a ticket, others open the doors with no charge for admission. Others do not hold a game or live scrimmage for one reason or another, and sometimes the final practice doesn’t even take place in the football stadium. In addition, some schools do not track attendance figures at all, leaving us to resort to the best reported estimates where applicable.Some numbers are still coming in and to be confirmed, but here is your most up-to-date top ten in spring game attendance heading into the third weekend of the month of April.

Some numbers are still coming in and to be confirmed, but here is your most up-to-date top ten in spring game attendance heading into the third weekend of the month of April.

1. 76,881 – Nebraska (Big Ten)

2. 60,000 – Michigan (Big Ten)

3. 46,815 – Georgia (SEC)

4. 42,807 – Oklahoma (Big 12)

5. 37,000 – Clemson (ACC)

6. 22,788 – USC (Pac-12)

7. 22,580 – South Carolina (SEC)

8. 21,000 – Florida (SEC)

9. 17,250 – Florida State (ACC)

10. 15,000 – Ole Miss (SEC)

We should see some changes in this top ten this weekend. A handful of spring game attendance powers are scheduled for spring ball this weekend, including the defending national champions from Ohio State. The buzz surrounding the quarterback position and continued celebration of a national championship could give a boost to a traditionally strong spring attendance. Penn State should also draw well if the weather looks good. In the SEC we will have Alabama, Auburn, LSU, Missouri and Mississippi State closing out the spring. Notre Dame and Texas will also be playing their spring games this weekend.

2020 Notre Dame signee arrested on burglary charges, no longer welcome as part of Fighting Irish football team

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The Notre Dame football team has seen its most recent recruiting class thinned thanks to an off-field incident.

During the Early Signing Period last month, Landen Bartleson signed on as a member of the Notre Dame football team’s 2020 recruiting class.  Bartleson had been expected to enroll at the university this coming summer.

Instead, Bartleson is one of three individuals arrested and charged with burglary, criminal mischief and receiving stolen property.  Bartleson, 18, and two 16-year-old juveniles were taken into custody Friday by Danville, Kentucky, law enforcement officials.

The particulars, from WKYT-TV:

Danville police say officers were called to check out a burglary that happened overnight at a store on Westridge Drive.

Police say the suspects smashed a window and stole multiple weapons.

As a result of the off-field incident, the Notre Dame football program has cut ties with Bartleson.  A statement from head coach Brian Kelly confirmed the development.

After reviewing all of the facts available to us and speaking with the Bartleson family, we informed them that Landen will no longer be welcomed as a member of our football program.

“This incident is very much out of character for the man we have come to know and we wish Landen and his family well.

Bartleson is a three-star 2020 prospect, rated as the No. 6 player regardless of position in the state of Kentucky.

Iowa State QB Re-al Mitchell latest to enter name into transfer portal

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The portal has claimed another name and Iowa State’s quarterback depth will suffer as a result.

Cyclones signal-caller Re-al Mitchell became the latest enter the NCAA Transfer Database this week and confirmed on social media that he was leaving Ames for another opportunity elsewhere.

The move is fairly unsurprising given that Mitchell arrived on campus in the same recruiting class as current starter Brock Purdy. With a pathway to significant playing time blocked by one of the best young QB’s in the sport, a ticket out of town seemed like it was coming sooner or later for the team’s No. 2 on the depth chart.

A dual-threat known for his speed, Mitchell was originally ranked as a three-star prospect coming out of high school who picked ISU over Arizona, Illinois, Kansas State, South Carolina and others. He wound up playing in six games under Matt Campbell over two seasons and threw for an even 100 yards and one touchdown.

A Southern California native, it’s possible a move back West could be in the cards for Mitchell. He appears to be insistent on playing under center but did see spot duty as a wide receiver during his stint in Ames.

Following the departure of Mitchell, Campbell will quite a bit of youth behind Purdy on the team’s depth chart. Freshman Aidan Bouman enrolled early for spring practice while fellow Class of 2020 QB and four-star recruit Hunter Dekkers will arrive later as they battle it out for backup reps. Iowa State opens the season at home against FCS South Dakota before heading to Kinnick Stadium to take on rival Iowa in Week 2.

Texas LB Ayodele Adeoye to miss spring practice with foot injury

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New Texas coordinator Chris Ash’s task at turning around the team’s defense got a tad bit harder on Saturday.

According to a release from the school, linebacker Ayodele Adeoye suffered a foot injury and will undergo surgery to correct it. While he is expected to be back in time for summer workouts, the upcoming trip under the knife will knock him out for all of spring practice in Austin.

Adeoye was a top recruit out of high school in 2018 but played in just four games and redshirted his first year on the Forty Acres. He turned into a regular starter (nine games) last season however and was fifth on the team in tackles (45) while recording an interception and 2.5 sacks.

With the redshirt sophomore out, the Longhorns depth this spring as they re-tool under Ash will certainly be tested. Fellow rising sophomore David Gbenda likely will take on an increased role based on the depth chart — though he might have to earn his way back after being sent home from UT’s Alamo Bowl win over Utah due to a violation of team rules.

Texas opens the 2020 season at home against USF and new head coach Jeff Scott before heading to Baton Rouge for a must-see game against reigning national champion LSU in Week 2.

Miami DL Scott Patchan enters transfer portal

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The transfer portal has giveth for Miami football and it’s taken away.

Less than a week after Hurricanes got a big pickup in the form of Temple grad transfer DL Quincy Roche, the program learned that veteran defensive end Scott Patchan had entered his name into the transfer portal via an announcement on social media:

Patchan started six games last season and played in all 13 for Miami in 2019. He recorded 33 tackles and 2.5 sacks while in the lineup but ultimately took a back seat to star pass rusher Greg Rousseau and a host of others.

The loss of Patchan certainly hurts the depth head coach Manny Diaz has to play with but is by no means a killer given what will return in 2020 along the line. In addition to Rousseau (coming off a 15.5 sack campaign) and former AAC Defensive Player of the Year Roche, rising sophomore Jahfari Harvey saw action and former five-star Jaelan Phillips will be eligible after transferring from UCLA.

Patchan, who received a waiver from the NCAA for a sixth-year after injuries hampered his career, will be immediately eligible for his new school.

Miami opens the 2020 season with a game against Temple as part of a three-game homestand against Group of Five opponents before traveling to Michigan State for a big non-conference test.