Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

Penn State’s Saquon Barkley declares for NFL draft

1 Comment

Penn State running back Saquon Barkley said he would announce his decision when he felt the time was right. A day after helping lead Penn State to a victory in the Fiesta Bowl, Barkley has revealed his decision. He’s going to the NFL.

As many suspected would be the case, Barkley will skip his final year of eligibility at Penn State and enter the NFL Draft, where he is expected to be one of the top picks in the draft and the top running back selected. Barkley announced his decision on his Instagram account with a lengthy letter to the Penn State community.

Barkley finished fourth in the Heisman Trophy voting in 2017 but won the Paul Hornung Award as the nation’s most versatile player. A consensus All-American and a two-time Chicago Tribune Silver Football recipient as the Big Ten’s best player, Barkley was a key player in Penn State’s rise the past two seasons in a brand new offense. The former four-star recruit rushed for 1,271 yards and 18 touchdowns and caught 54 passes for 632 yards and three touchdowns this season. Barkley also had an impact on special teams, where he returned 15 kickoffs for 426 yards and two touchdowns, both at the start of games.

Barkley’s departure from Penn State leaves the door open for Miles Sanders to take over the bulk of the running duties next season. Also a former top running back recruit from Pennsylvania, Sanders carried the football 31 times for 191 yards and two touchdowns in 2017 and continued to take over some special teams duties as well, as he did as a freshman in 2016. Penn State also adds Ricky Slade in the Class of 2018 to the running back haul as the Nittany Lions look to replace the production of Barkley next season.

Wisconsin WR Quintez Cephus taking leave of absence as he deals with pending legal issue

Getty Images
1 Comment

Wisconsin’s passing game has taken hit, although it remains to be seen how long its effects will linger.

On his personal Twitter account Saturday night, Quintez Cephus announced that he has been “forced to take a leave of absence from the team in order to focus all of my attention on clearing my name.” In his social media statement, the wide receiver stated he was informed by his lawyers Friday afternoon that the Dane County (WI) District Attorney’s office will pursue unspecified charges against him for an incident that occurred back in April of this year.

“I have been wrongfully accused of unlawful conduct and I am innocent of any allegations associated with this consensual relationship,” Cephus wrote, adding that the pending charges are the result of a three-month investigation.

No details of what led to this situation have been divulged.

While UW has yet to publicly address the development, they are expected to release a statement on the situation in the not-too-distant future.

Last season, Cephus led the run-centric Badgers in receiving touchdowns with six and yards per catch at 16.7.  His 501 receiving yards were good for second, while his 30 receptions were third on the team.

In April of last year, Cephus’ father was murdered after being shot in the head execution-style.

Georgia’s Zamir White, nation’s No. 1 running back in 2018, suffers torn ACL

Getty Images
Leave a comment

One of the crown jewels of Georgia’s top-ranked 2018 recruiting class will have to bounce back from a significant injury yet again.

Kirby Smart confirmed Saturday that Zamir White suffered an injury to his left knee during the second scrimmage of summer camp earlier in the day. The non-contact injury occurred when the true freshman was taking part in punt coverage.

While the head coach didn’t initially know the extent of the injury, a subsequent MRI revealed that White sustained a torn ACL in the left knee. The school has not yet confirmed the Athens Banner-Herald‘s initial report.

White suffered a torn ACL last November during his North Carolina high school team’s playoff run, but had been given the all-clear medically to fully participate in practice. That ACL injury, incidentally, was in his right knee.

A consensus five-star signee, White was the No. 1 running back on 247Sports.com‘s composite board and was the No. 9 player overall. Only one member of the Bulldogs’ class this year, quarterback Justin Fields, was rated higher than White.

White had been expected to help replace the production lost with the departures of Nick Chubb and Sony Michel to the NFL.

Nick Saban on injury concerns: ‘You just think whatever happens, we just s**t another player’

NCAA FOOTBALL: SEP 05 AdvoCare Classic - Wisconsin v Alabama
Getty Images
2 Comments

It’s still mid-August, but Nick Saban‘s already in rare form when it comes to dealing with the media.

Saturday. it was confirmed that backup linebacker Chris Allen will be lost for the entire 2018 season because of a serious knee injury. Additionally, offensive tackle Matt Womack, who underwent surgery Friday after reinjuring his foot, will miss 4-6 weeks.

Following today’s scrimmage, Saban became agitated when he was asked by a member of the media about his level of concern with the mini-spate of reserve players going down with injuries. From al.com:

I’ve been concerned all along,” Saban said. “So, I don’t even know why you’d ask the question.”

And then things really got rolling.

“Because you all don’t, you just think we just, whatever happens, we just s**t another player and everything is going to be perfect. All of our fans think that. You all think that. That’s what you write about. That’s the message you send out there.

For the record, Saban has shat quite well on the recruiting trail over the last decade:

2018: Fifth in 247Sports.com‘s composite rankings
2017: First
2016: First
2015: First
2014: First
2013: First
2012: First
2011: First
2010: Fourth
2009: Third

In that span, Saban has signed 41 five-star recruits and another 146 who were four-stars.

And the Class of 2019? Saban is getting s**t done yet again as the Crimson Tide is currently ranked No. 2 behind Georgia.

Mike Gundy no longer has awesome mullet

AP Photo
Leave a comment

Oklahoma State head coach Mike Gundy had a nice throwback look last season with a mullet that took the college football world by storm. Sadly, the party in the back is no more.

As seen in a recent video from Oklahoma State camp, Gundy’s hair is noticeably shorter in the back, although there may still be a foundation for an eventual mullet to make a return as the season progresses.

Here’s hoping Gundy decides to not get a haircut again until the Cowboys lose a game this season. Aside from a possible threat from Boise State in Stillwater early on in the season, there is a chance Oklahoma State could string together a good number of wins heading into November. That would give Gundy plenty of time to let that party animal grow out a little more.

Helmet sticker to Reddit.