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Oklahoma to stripe Memorial Stadium for UCLA game

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Once again, Oklahoma is going to stripe Norman Stadium for a home game this season. As they did last year, Oklahoma will color coordinate the sections of their home stadium in school colors to keep the color coordinating fan trend in full swing this fall.

The game Oklahoma has chosen for this year’s stripe-out game will come early on September 8 when the Sooners host Chip Kelly and UCLA in Week 2.

Oklahoma will hope this year’s stripe out goes better than last year’s attempt. Oklahoma orchestrated a stripe out for the home game against Iowa State, which turned out to be the lone loss for the Sooners until the College Football Playoff. Iowa State stunned Oklahoma, 38-31.

Manning Award features 30 QBs on its preseason watch list

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Don’t quote me on it, but I do believe we have come to the final preseason watch list of the 2018 offseason. Maybe?

Thursday, the Manning Award released its initial list of the top 30 quarterbacks in the country to watch for the upcoming season, although a player not on this initial list is not necessarily precluded from winning the award. This is the only major award, it should be noted, that is handed out after the bowls, and is named in honor of the quarterbacking triumvirate of Archie, Peyton and Eli Manning.

Highlighting this latest watch list are four of the finalists for the 2017 award claimed by Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield — Penn State’s Trace McSorely, UCF’s McKenzie Milton, Auburn’s Jarrett Stidham and Arizona’s Khalil Tate.

All 10 FBS conferences are represented, led by the SEC’s five and four each from the ACC and Big Ten. The Pac-12 is next with three, while the remaining leagues — the AAC, Big 12, Conference USA, MAC Mountain West and Sun Belt — come in with two apiece. A pair of football independents, Notre Dame and UMass, are also represented.

Of the 30 watch listers, 17 are seniors and 12 are juniors. The lone sophomore is Virginia Tech’s Josh Jackson.

Below is the complete 2018 Manning Award preseason watch list:

Jake Bentley, Jr., South Carolina
Jake Browning, Sr., Washington
A.J. Erdely, Sr., UAB
Caleb Evans, Jr. UL-Monroe
Mason Fine, Jr., North Texas
Ryan Finley, Sr., N.C. State
Nick Fitzgerald, Sr., Mississippi State
Andrew Ford, Sr., Massachusetts
Ty Gangi, Sr., Nevada
Will Grier, Sr., West Virginia
Justice Hansen, Sr., Arkansas State
Ben Hicks, Jr., SMU
Alex Hornibrook, Jr., Wisconsin
Josh Jackson, Soph., Virginia Tech
Daniel Jones, Jr., Duke
Kyle Kempt, Sr., Iowa State
Brian Lewerke, Jr., Michigan State
Drew Lock, Sr., Missouri
Trace McSorley, Sr., Penn State
McKenzie Milton, Jr., Central Florida
Gus Ragland, Sr., Miami (Ohio)
Malik Rosier, Sr., Miami
Nathan Rourke, Jr., Ohio
Brett Rypien, Sr., Boise State
Kyle Shurmur, Sr., Vanderbilt
Nathan Stanley, Jr., Iowa
Jarrett Stidham, Sr., Auburn
Khalil Tate, Jr., Arizona
Manny Wilkins, Sr., Arizona State
Brandon Wimbush, Jr., Notre Dame

Auburn confirms future home-and-home dates with Baylor, UCLA

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For those who favor Power Five-vs.-Power Five games being played on campus, Thursday was a pretty good day.

Auburn announced earlier in the day today that it has secured future home-and-home series with both Baylor and UCLA.  You will have plenty of time to make travel arrangements, though, as those four games won’t be played until 2025-28.

Going in alphabetical order, Auburn will travel to Waco to play Baylor on Aug. 30, 2025.  The Tigers will then return the hosting favors the following season as the Bears will make the trek to The Plains for a Sept. 5, 2026, date at Jordan-Hare Stadium.

“We are excited to announce a home-and-home series with Auburn,” BU athletic director Mack Rhoades said in a statement. “This is an exciting opportunity for our student-athletes to compete against a tradition-rich Power 5 opponent and for our fans to enjoy games against a top out-of-conference team.

“One of our goals is to provide a challenging schedule each and every season. Non-conference games like these, in addition to the Big 12’s true round-robin conference schedule, will help us continue to put our teams in position to compete for championships.”

As for the UCLA series, the Tigers will travel to the historic and iconic Rose Bowl on Sept. 4, 2027.  On Sept. 2, 2028, Auburn will host UCLA.

The 2027 game will mark the first-ever meeting between the Tigers and Bruins.

The Tigers and Bears (oh my!) have met four times previously, the most recent coming way back in 1976 at Auburn.  Those two teams first met in the 1954 Gator Bowl, with Auburn picking up its first and only win in the miniseries as the Bears hold a 2-1-1 lead all-time on the Tigers.

West Virginia reportedly looking to end relationship with Papa John’s

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The fallout over racist comments from the founder of Papa John’s are continuing to spill over into college football, with West Virginia becoming the latest program to take a look at their deals with the pizza company.

Per the Daily Athenaeum, Mountaineers officials confirmed that they are exploring their options with regards to Papa John’s and a split between the two parties is on the table before the season starts in Morgantown.

“We’re having conversations internally, externally and then we will come to a decision hopefully here in the very near future about what the involvement looks like for this season and moving forward,” Matt senior associate athletic director Matt Wells told the paper. “Our relationship has been with the local franchisee, not necessarily corporate, so that’s why we’re taking our time and having some very thorough discussions before we make any final decisions on what the relationship looks like this season.”

The university as a whole is also looking into their relationship with Papa John’s and likely will come to some sort of agreement about what to do with the athletic department. The Athenaeum reports Papa John’s is one of 19 corporate partners for the Mountaineers and is the only pizza company on the list.

Should WVU parts ways, they’ll be one of several schools who have put quite a bit of distance between them and Papa John’s over the past month. Louisville famously took the name off their stadium at the beginning of August and others like Oregon State have suspended their deals with the company.

The Mountaineers open the year against Tennessee with a neutral site game but return to Morgantown for their home opener against Youngstown State on September 8.

Two four-star Texas freshmen ruled out for at least 2018 opener

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A couple of members of Texas’ 2018 recruiting class who were supposed to contribute this season for the Longhorns this season won’t be able to do so immediately.

The UT football program confirmed Wednesday that linebacker Ayodele Adeoye and linebacker/safety DeMarvion Overshown will be sidelined for at least the Sept. 1 opener against Maryland.  Both players are dealing with knee injuries they sustained during a scrimmage this past Saturday.

According to Chip Brown of, Adeoyo is dealing with an MCL sprain that could keep the true freshman out for up to six weeks.  Such a timeline, at least on the long end, means that Adeoyo could potentially miss games against Tulsa (Sept. 8), USC (Sept. 15) and TCU (Sept. 22) as well as the opener.

While there is no timeframe yet for Overshown’s return, the school stated in its release that both players are expected to “miss an extended period of time.”

Both Adeoyo and Overshown were four-star signees this past recruiting cycle.  Per‘s composite board, only three players in the Longhorns’ most recent class were rated higher than Overshown — a pair of five-star safeties in Caden Sterns and B.J.  Foster as well as four-star cornerback Jalen Green.