The Birmingham Bowl apparently had no issues rebranding into the BirmingHAM Bowl in 2018.
An absolutely bonkers final few minutes saw the lead change three times before Wake Forest survived a missed field goal as time expired to win 37-34 and triumph in the postseason for the third straight year.
The Demon Deacons ran off 20 consecutive points over the final three quarters at one point and improbably put together a six-play, 75 yard touchdown drive in the final 75 seconds that proved to be the game-winning points.
Making just his fourth career start, Wake quarterback Jamie Newman showed why he’s a true dual-threat under center by leading his team in both passing and rushing. The redshirt sophomore finished his first bowl game by throwing for 328 yards and a touchdown (one pick) while also rushing 23 times for 91 yards and a trio of scores as well. He also distributed the ball quite effectively in finding nine different receivers in the game — no small feat considering the team’s best player, Greg Dortch, missed the contest with an injury.
Tailbacks Matt Colburn (61 yards) and Cade Carney (51 yards) also chipped in on the ground while wideout Alex Bachman showed why he wears the No. 1 jersey with seven catches for a whopping 171 yards through the air.
Their efforts were just enough to overcome a big start by Memphis (up 28-10 at one point) and nearly a terrific finish too as the Tigers took nearly five minutes off the clock in the fourth quarter with an 88 yard touchdown drive to take the lead back. After their defense let them down a bit in allowing Wake to come back and score, the offense zipped down the field in just four plays to set up up a potentially game-tying field goal… but a false start backed up Riley Patterson, who sent the 43-yarder just wide.
QB Brady White was hot and cold during the game in throwing for 171 yards and a touchdown (one INT) but did do enough to keep the defense loose for his tailbacks. Patrick Taylor was the workhorse with 110 yards and a score while all-purpose threat Tony Pollard did a bit of everything with 109 yards and a touchdown on the ground to go with a 97 yard kick return — an NCAA record-tying seventh of his career.
The thrilling ending dropped Memphis to 8-6 on the season after holding big leads in each of their past two games (this one and the AAC title game against UCF). While the disappointment was clear on behalf of the Tigers, so too was the jubilation on the Wake Forest sideline after the game as they won three of their final four to close out 2018 at 7-6.
Earlier this offseason, Zach Wilson underwent surgery on his right (throwing) shoulder and, as a result, was sidelined for all of spring practice at BYU. With the start of the 2019 season a little over two months away, the quarterback gave a very positive update on his rehabilitation at the football program’s Media Day.
“Recovery is going good,” Wilson, who threw a football for the first time earlier this month since undergoing the surgery, told the assembled media. “I’m 100 percent on schedule for where I’m supposed to be.” Wilson’s head coach, Kilani Sitake, added that he “think[s] he’s on schedule and will be ready to roll.”
BYU will open up the 2019 campaign at home by playing host to in-state rival Utah Aug. 29 in the 100th renewal of the Holy War.
When Wilson started the Oct. 13 Hawaii game this past season, he became the seventh true freshman in Cougars history to start at quarterback. At 19 years, two months, he was also the youngest ever under center for the football independent.
Wilson went on to start a total of six games in 2018, capping off that rookie effort by pitching a perfect game in BYU’s bowl rout of Western Michigan.
For the second time this week, Illinois is on the receiving end of a Power Five transfer.
Late last month, it was reported that Brandon Peters was set to visit Illinois as well take trips to a pair of MAC schools in Bowling Green and Miami of Ohio. On Instagram Tuesday evening, the quarterback confirmed that he will be continuing his collegiate career with the Fighting Illini.
In early May, it was confirmed that Peters had signaled his intent to leave Michigan by entering his name into the NCAA transfer database.
Peters will graduate from U-M later next month, which allows for immediate eligibility for the Indiana native. He would also have another season of eligibility he can use the following year.
A four-star member of the Wolverines’ 2016 recruiting class, Peters was rated as the No. 6 pro-style quarterback in the country; the No. 1 player at any position in the state of Indiana; and the No. 61 player overall on 247Sports.com‘s composite board. Only two signees in Jim Harbaugh‘s first full class in Ann Arbor were rated higher than Peters.
After redshirting as a true freshman, Peters started four of the six games in which he played in 2017 and appeared to be the Wolverines’ quarterback of the future before Shea Patterson transferred into the program from Ole Miss. With Patterson starting all of last year, Peters attempted just one pass in five appearances this past season.
Peters’ decision to transfer from the Wolverines came a few of months after Patterson opted to return to U-M for another season instead of leaping early in the 2019 NFL Draft.
I’m not sure if you knew this, but it can get hot in Tampa in the early fall. Humid. Steamy. Muggy. Downright uncomfortable. Sweat is a part of life there, especially if you’re spending your Saturday afternoons running around in full pads and a helmet.
As such, South Florida figured it’d be to their advantage to wear lightweight, breathable uniforms, and Adidas has produced.
On Tuesday, USF debuted a brand new WVN A1 uniform, the German-based manufacturer’s lightest uniform. USF was certain to point out they will be the only team in the threads this season.
“We are very excited that in the second year of our partnership with adidas our football team will be the only one in the country wearing their lightest weight uniforms,” USF AD Michael Kelly said in a statement. “We look forward to the Bulls looking great and feeling great in the new lightweight, breathable material.”
The design itself is slightly different from what the Bulls wore previously, solid green or white with green shoulders, cresting into golden bull horns on each side, above a solid color pant. The metallic material that comprises the golden Bull horn on each shoulder was developed in Israel.
Everyone has their own opinion when it comes to uniforms, but in this set of eyes these kits are a massive step up from the chainmail-style Adidas template South Florida wore previously, shown above.
The new, lightweight uniforms will take the field for the first time on Friday, Aug. 30 vs. Wisconsin (7 p.m. ET, ESPN).
Kansas State wide receiver Hunter Rison will pursue a second transfer in as many years, according to reports Tuesday from GoPowercat and the Wichita Eagle.
The son of Michigan State great Andre Rison, Hunter signed with his father’s alma mater in 2017 and caught 19 passes for 224 yards as a freshman before transferring to Kansas State. After sitting out the 2018 season, as per NCAA transfer rules, Rison shined in spring practice, but his career as a Wildcat was instantly derailed when he was arrested for domestic battery in April.
Rison was immediately suspended from the team, though he maintains his innocence. Charges have not been filed, and his first court appearance in the civil case related to the charge is scheduled for July 16.
“This will be my only response,” Rison wrote on Twitter at the time. “I will continue to be myself … A man of God, as well as a great student-athlete at this university. I have done nothing wrong.”