Associated Press

No. 17 Miami storms from 20-point deficit to top Florida State

7 Comments

At the 11:52 mark of the third quarter, it appeared No. 17 Miami was headed for the most frustrating loss of the Mark Richt era. Florida State wasn’t putting much offense together, but the ‘Noles didn’t need much offense — they used a punt return touchdown, another long punt return, a fumble and an ill-advised fourth down attempt to build a 27-7 lead.

But Miami stopped stepping on its own feet and stomped on Florida State, as the Hurricanes stormed back for a 28-27 win.

The comeback started when Sheldrick Redwine sacked Deondre Francois and forced a fumble, handing the Hurricanes the ball at the FSU 20. N’Kosi Perry hit Lawrence Cager for a touchdown pass on a 4th-and-goal from the three to pull Miami back within 27-14; both of Miami’s first touchdowns came on fourth down passes to Cager.

After the score, Miami (5-1, 2-0 ACC) continued making trouble for Florida State inside Seminoles territory when Michael Pinckney stepped in front of a Francois pass at the FSU 22.

Miami again capitalized on a short field, as Perry needed only one play to hit Jeff Thomas for a 17-yard score and pull the ‘Canes within 27-21 at the 4:17 mark of the third quarter.

After a pair of punts, Florida State (3-3, 1-3 ACC) had a chance to push its lead back to two scores but a 45-yard double pass touchdown was called back upon review for an illegal forward pass, turning a 34-21 lead into a 2nd-and-12. The ‘Noles moved into field goal range, but Ricky Aguayo — good from 42 and 53 yards in the first half — missed a 43-yard try at the 12:42 mark of the fourth quarter.

Another Florida State mistake immediately led to more Miami points, as Perry found Thomas for a gain of 32 yards and then Brevin Jordan for a 41-yard scoring strike, his fourth of the day, giving Miami the lead with 11:52 remaining.

Florida State possessed the ball three times after falling behind 28-27, but all three possessions ended in three-and-outs.

Miami could have added to the lead after obtaining a 1st-and-goal from the 1, but Richt chose to kneel away the final minute rather than punch in another score.

Francois passed for just 129 yards on 30 attempts (15 completions), and the ‘Noles mustered just 70 rushing yards on 33 attempts. The Seminoles gained just 14 first downs and were 5-of-16 on third down, in addition to the two crucial turnovers and the killer penalty.

Perry, meanwhile, completed only 13 of his 32 passes, but those 13 completions went for 204 yards with four touchdowns and no interceptions.

The win extends Miami’s all-time lead to 33-30 and hands the Hurricanes consecutive wins over their upstate rivals for the first time since taking six straight from 2000-04.

Wisconsin TE Luke Benzschawel medically retires after fourth knee surgery

Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
Leave a comment

Wisconsin redshirt senior tight end Luke Benzschawel is calling it a career. The senior announced he is medically retiring from the sport of football following his fourth knee surgery.

I consider myself fortunate to have been part of the Wisconsin football program for the past four years. I have not been as fortunate when it comes to my health,” Benzschawel said in a statement shared on his Twitter account on Monday. “However, after undergoing a fourth procedure on my knee, and despite giving everything I have to get back on the field, my doctors and I have decided that the time has come for me to step away from the game.

Benzschawel played in 15 games during his injury-plagued college career with the Badgers. Benzschawel is the younger brother of former Wisconsin offensive lineman Beau Benzschawel. Benzschawel injured his knee during fall camp last August and did not see the playing field during the 2019 season as a result.

Alabama strength coach Scott Cochran leaving Tide for new on-field coaching role at Georgia

Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images
Leave a comment

One of Alabama’s most recognized sideline personalities appears to be heading to another SEC program. Alabama strength and conditioning coach Scott Cochran, a man whose identity has become as well known as any strength coach can possibly be over the last few years, is reportedly heading to Georgia to take on a brand new role.

There have been many reasons for Alabama’s overall success with Nick Saban as the head coach. Having Cochran on his staff has certainly been one of the key reasons because he has been recognized as one of the nation’s top strength and conditioning coach (he’s won the award for top strength coach twice). And it may not be much of a coincidence that Cochran has been one of the only assistants on the staff for each of Saban’s national championship seasons between Alabama and LSU. His voice and energy seen on the field in warmups and on the sidelines has become a draw for television cameras in more recent years and he has been one of the leaders in the movement to recognize more strength and conditioning coaches during gamedays.

It should come as little surprise Cochran would be an attractive option for Georgia head coach Kirby Smart, a former Alabama defensive coordinator who worked alongside Cochran in Tuscaloosa. What role Cochran will be taking on remains to be confirmed, however, as reports say he will not be Georgia’s strength and conditioning coach. That role is currently held by Scott Sinclair in Athens.

No matter what role Cochran takes at Georgia, and how that ultimately pans out for the Bulldogs, this is a notable loss for Saban and Alabama. Granted, Alabama should be able to find a more-than-qualified strength and conditioning coach to take over the very lucrative (and high-paying) job, so it’s not like this will turn Alabama football into a doormat (much to the dismay of Alabama haters around the SEC and beyond).

Ole Miss QB John Rhys Plumlee, RB Jerrion Early also starting for Rebels’ baseball team

Getty Images
Leave a comment

John Rhys Plumlee and Jerrion Early were two of the best athletes on Ole Miss’s football team in 2019. The pair, both true freshmen, led the club in rushing; Plumlee rushed for 1,023 yards and 12 touchdowns while also throwing for 910 yards and four touchdowns, and Early ran for 722 yards and six scores on nearly seven yards per carry.

But it’s actually an understatement to limit the backfield mates’ athletic ability to just the football team. They’re two of the best athletes at the school, period.

The Rebels’ baseball team, ranked No. 13 in the country by Baseball America, is off to a 6-1 start with both Plumlee and Early contributing.

Early, a 31st round selection by the Arizona Diamondbacks out of Jackson Prep in Walnut Grove, Miss., has appeared in five games with three starts at center field. He’s 1-of-8 with four walks, three runs scored and three stolen bases in as many attempts.

Plumlee has appeared in four games to date, starting Saturday’s win over Xavier in left field. He’s struggled at the plate thus far, going 0-for-7 with five strikeouts, though he has scored one run and stole a base in his only attempt.

The Hattiesburg native is not only juggling college classes while playing two sports, but he’s also in the midst of a quarterback battle with fellow rising sophomore Matt Corral while learning a new offense under new head coach Lane Kiffin and offensive coordinator Jeff Lebby.

Both players are giving it a go on the diamond, but their new head coach has made it clear where their bread is buttered.

“We want that to be (Plumlee’s) first priority, because if you’re going to be in something, I just think you go with it, and whatever time he has left he’ll come to us,” Kiffin told OM Spirit.

“I talked about it with baseball…let’s see how it goes,. They’re (Plumlee and Ealy) all in right now on baseball, and then let’ see. If they’re having a significant role, they’ll stay in there. If they’re not, then they’ll probably come back and do more football,” said Kiffin.

Utah WR Terrell Perriman now up to eight felony charges, dismissed from program

Getty Images
2 Comments

Utah wide receiver Terrell Perriman was already in serious trouble in late January when he was charged with allegedly raping and kidnapping a 17-year-old girl.

But his count of two felony charges has now grown to six, according to KSL, as Salt Lake County prosecutors are now charging him with three counts of rape, two counts of forcible sodomy, burglary, forcible sexual abuse and aggravated kidnapping.

According to KSL, witnesses saw Perriman force his way into a woman’s residence in the fall of 2018, when he allegedly forced her to perform a sex act on him. A month later, the victim says he forced his way into her apartment and again forced her to perform a sex act on him.

Then, in January, Perriman texted a woman to come to his residence, where he forcibly removed her leggings and raped her. He was arrested for that alleged rape two days later.

Utah head coach Kyle Whittingham announced Friday that Perriman has been dismissed from the team.

“He was suspended indefinitely when we initially became aware of the incident that led to his arrest,” Whittingham said in a statement. “At that time we said we would monitor the situation as it moved through the legal process. Today we were made aware of additional charges that led to our decision to dismiss him.

“Because of the ongoing legal process, and with Terrell no longer a part of our program, we will have no further comments regarding the situation.”

A Florida product, Perriman was a bit player for the Utes. After redshirting in 2018, Perriman appeared in 10 games for the Pac-12 South champions, primarily on special teams. He amassed two catches for nine yards and one rush for five in the Alamo Bowl, his last game as a Ute.