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Alabama remains super in latest Super 16 Poll

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After continuing to tighten their grip on the top spot in the AP and coaches polls this week, the Alabama Crimson Tide also flexed some muscle atop the latest Super 16 Poll from the Football Writers Association of America and the National Football Foundation. Alabama received 48 of a possible 51 first-place votes to remain on top of the Super 16 Poll once again, with Georgia and LSU each receiving one of the remaining first-place ballots submitted this week.

Like in the AP and coaches polls, Alabama’s ownership of first-place votes has trended up each week the Super 16 has been released. Alabama received 36 first-place votes in the preseason Super 16 Poll and has managed to add to their total each successive week the poll has been released.

This week’s Super 16 poll saw some newcomers after a week of upsets and critical outcomes across the nation. At No. 13, Michigan is back in the Super 16 poll where they started in the preseason ranking. The Wolverines are back for the first time since opening the season with a loss at Notre Dame. UCF, who has continued to trend upward in the overall voting since the preseason poll, has finally made their debut in the Super 16, coming in at No. 14 this week. After a brief drop off the poll last week, Wisconsin is back, this week taking No. 15. And at No. 16 is Kentucky, following the Wildcats taking down Mississippi State, who went from being No. 13 to one of the last few schools to receive any votes overall.

Oklahoma State, Mississippi State, and Virginia Tech each received votes this week but all three fell out of the top 16 after suffering losses this past weekend. Other schools receiving votes after not receiving any last week are Miami, Texas, Duke, South Carolina, Texas Tech, and USF.

Super 16 Poll – Week 5

  1. Alabama (49 first-place votes)
  2. Georgia (1)
  3. Clemson
  4. Ohio State
  5. LSU (1)
  6. Oklahoma
  7. Stanford
  8. Penn State
  9. Notre Dame
  10. Auburn
  11. Washington
  12. West Virginia
  13. Michigan
  14. UCF
  15. Wisconsin
  16. Kentucky

As a disclaimer, three contributors to College Football Talk are voters in the Super 16 Poll; Zach Barnett, Bryan Fischer, and myself, Kevin McGuire.

Florida State parts ways with offensive line coach Greg Frey

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A self-created hole has suddenly, but not unexpectedly, opened up on Willie Taggart‘s Florida State coaching staff.

In a statement sent out by the university, Taggart announced that he has decided to part ways with one of his assistants, Greg Frey.  Frey, who was a member of FSU’s 1993 national championship team, spent this past season, his first, as the Seminoles’ offensive line coach while also holding the title of run-game coordinator.

Below is the head coach’s statement, in its entirety:

This morning I informed Greg Frey that we are moving in a different direction with our offensive line coaching position. I appreciate the hard work and expertise Greg brought to our program and understand how important it was for him that FSU be successful. I wish Greg and his family the best as he continues his coaching career. We are working to fill this position quickly.

This past season, FSU’s line surrendered 36 sacks, a total that was 12th in the ACC and tied for 16th-worst nationally.  Even worse, the Seminoles’ 2.8 yards per rushing attempt was 129th out of 130 teams at the FBS level.

Frey came to Tallahassee after spending one season as the run-game coordinator/offensive tackles coach/tight ends coach at Michigan.  Prior to that, he was the line coach at Indiana for six seasons.

Penn State reportedly losing special teams coordinator to NFL

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Those of you who had Penn State in the “Next Power Five Program to Lose an Assistant to the NFL” pool, collect your winnings.

While nothing is official from his new employer, 247Sports.com has reported Friday morning that Penn State assistant Phil Galiano is leaving James Franklin‘s coaching staff to pursue an opportunity in the NFL.  The specific NFL club for which Galiano is leaving wasn’t divulged.

Penn State subsequently confirmed Galiano’s departure from the program.

“We are excited for Phil and his family. This is a tremendous opportunity for Phil to return to the NFL,” the statement from the school read. “We are very appreciative of Phil and everything he has done for our program over the last two years. We wish him nothing but success moving forward.”

Galiano has been with the Nittany Lions for two seasons, first as a defensive consultant in 2017 and then as special teams coordinator and assistant defensive line coach this past year.  Prior to that, he was the special teams coordinator at both Miami (2016) and Rutgers (2015).

From 2012-13, Galiano was an assistant special teams coach on Greg Schiano‘s Tampa Bay Buccaneers staff.

Galiano would be the second change to Franklin’s staff this offseason.  Wide receivers coach David Corley was dismissed in early January and replaced a couple of weeks later by Gerad Parker.

Judge signs arrest warrant for Nebraska RB Maurice Washington

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The next step in Maurice Washington‘s legal odyssey has been taken.

Thursday, the Omaha World-Herald reported, a Santa Clara County (Calif.) judge signed a warrant filed earlier in the week that seeks the arrest of the Nebraska running back for alleged violation of that state’s revenge-porn law.  It’s alleged that Washington sent a sexually-explicit 10-second video, recorded two years prior by someone other than Washington, involving a then-15-year-old female and two other boys, neither of whom was Washington, to that same female in early March of 2016.  The female has claimed she is being sexually assaulted in the video, which shows the teenager performing oral sex on one boy while another masturbates.

Washington has already been charged with a felony count of possessing a video or photograph of a person under 18 who is engaging in or simulating sexual conduct and a misdemeanor count of posting a video or photograph of a person engaging in or simulating sexual conduct without consent, leading to the person suffering emotional distress.  Washington had dated the alleged victim prior to the video being recorded.

With the arrest warrant signed, Washington is now expected to turn himself in to California authorities at some point in the not-too-distant future.

From the World-Herald:

Washington’s attorney, John Ball, released a statement Thursday saying Washington will “continue to move forward with a self-surrender” and will voluntarily appear in court in California. Ball said a time frame for that first court appearance is still to be determined.

“We expected this, and were prepared for it,” Ball said. “… Mr. Washington will remain fully cooperative in this matter.

While the university and the NU football program were aware that authorities in California as well as the Nebraska Attorney General’s Office were actively seeking to speak to Washington, and were made aware of some type of situation involving the player in mid-September of last year, they have steadfastly maintained that they were not privy to the details of the situation until Feb. 8 of this year.

After some academic uncertainty throughout the offseason, Washington was cleared to join the Cornhuskers football team in early August of last year.  As a true freshman, and despite the off-field cloud hanging over him from the start of the season, Washington rushed for 455 yards and three touchdowns, numbers that were both good for third on the team.  His 24 receptions were also third-best, while his 221 receiving yards were fourth.

Syracuse makes addition of first-team All-SBC DE to the roster official

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So much for that bit of uncertainty.

Earlier this week, Coastal Carolina defensive end Jeffrey Gunter tweeted that he had decided to continue his collegiate playing career at Syracuse.  A bit of consternation ensued in Orange Nation, however, as the lineman deleted not only the tweet announcing his move to the ACC school but his Twitter account as well.

Fears were allayed Thursday, though, as Syracuse confirmed Gunter’s addition to Dino Babers‘ roster.

Gunter will be forced to sit out the 2019 season in order to satisfy NCAA transfer rules.  He’d then have two years of eligibility he could use beginning with the 2020 season.

After totaling 14 tackles for loss and five sacks this past season, Gunter was named first-team All-Sun Belt Conference.  In addition to Syracuse, Gunter had also considered NC State, North Carolina and Oregon.