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Barry Sanders (and his OL) to serve as grand marshals for Oklahoma State homecoming

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Thirty years ago, Barry Sanders authored perhaps the greatest individual season any college football player has ever had. The eventual Heisman winner racked up 344 carries for 2,628 yards and 37 touchdowns — in 11 games. Count it by today’s standards and Sanders ripped off 2,850 yards and 42 touchdowns over the course of a single season.

Look at this work of art.

Voted in 2014 as the greatest individual season in college football history, Sanders’s 1988 campaign has become more impressive now than it was 30 years ago. In the day and age of pass-first offenses, Sanders’s record-breaking campaign may never be approached again, let alone duplicated. For instance, in 2014 Melvin Gordon rushed for 2,587 yards and 29 touchdowns, but needed 14 games to get there.

On Tuesday, Oklahoma State announced it is getting the band back together to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Sanders’s Heisman campaign.

“Cowboy fans have very fond memories of watching Barry play,” said Blaire Atkinson, interim president of the OSU Alumni Association. “Given the anniversary, we couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate Homecoming than with the addition of our Heisman award winner and his teammates.”

Added Sanders himself: “1988 was such a special year for OSU football. The fact that I get to celebrate the 30th anniversary at Homecoming with my coaches, teammates, and of course our fans, is very special to me.”

Sanders and his offensive line — known as the War Pigs — will serve as grand marshals of Homecoming, which means leading the Sea of Orange parade on Saturday morning and appearing at the Cowboys’ 98th Homecoming game later that day on Oct. 27 as Oklahoma State hosts Texas.

2017 finalist Trace McSorely of Penn State headlines Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award preseason watch list

NCAA FOOTBALL: JAN 02 TaxSlayer Bowl - Penn State v Georgia
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If you thought Watch List Season 2018 had come and gone, you’re sorely (McSorely?) mistaken.

Tuesday morning, the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award announced its preseason watch list, which features 49 of the top quarterbacks in the country.  In our annual reminder, the award is given yearly to the top signal-caller in the country who is either a senior or fourth-year junior on schedule to graduate with their class and takes into account his accomplishments both on and off the field.

Headlining this year’s preseason watch group is Penn State’s Trace McSorely, who was a finalist for the 2017 version of the award claimed by Oklahoma State’s Mason Rudolph.

All nine FBS conferences are represented, with the Pac-12’s nine and SEC’s seven leading the way.  Next up at six each are the ACC, Big Ten and Conference USA, followed by the Mountain West (five), AAC (three), Big 12 (three), MAC (two) and Sun Belt (one).  One football independent, Notre Dame’s Brandon Wimbush, made the initial cut as well.

Below is the complete 2018 preseason watch list for the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award:

Jake Bentley, South Carolina
David Blough, Purdue
Ross Bowers, Cal
Jake Browning, Washington
Kelly Bryant, Clemson
K.J. Carta-Samuels, Colorado State
Christian Chapman, San Diego State
Keller Chryst, Tennessee
Taylor Cornelius, Oklahoma State
Eric Dungey, Syracuse
A.J. Erdely, UAB
Ryan Finley, NC State
Nick Fitzgerald, Mississippi State
Ty Gangi, Nevada
Will Grier, West Virginia
Justice Hansen, Arkansas State
Justin Herbert, Oregon
Alex Hornibrook, Wisconsin
Tyler Huntley, Utah
Tyree Jackson, Buffalo
Daniel Jones, Duke
Kyle Kempt, Iowa State
Hasaan Klugh, UTEP
Brian Lewerke, Michigan State
Drew Lock, Missouri
Jake Luton, Oregon State
Trace McSorley, Penn State
Marcus McMaryion, Fresno State
McKenzie Milton, UCF
Gardner Minshew, Washington State
Steven Montez, Colorado
Hayden Moore, Cincinnati
James Morgan, FIU
Shea Patterson, Michigan
Bryce Perkins, Virginia
Gus Ragland, Miami of Ohio
Malik Rosier, Miami
Brett Rypien, Boise State
Kyle Shurmur, Vanderbilt
J’Mar Smith, Louisiana Tech
Jarrett Stidham, Auburn
Brent Stockstill, Middle Tennessee
Jordan Ta’amu, Ole Miss
Khalil Tate, Arizona
Alex Thomson, Marshall
Clayton Thorson, Northwestern
Brady White, Memphis
Manny Wilkins, Arizona State
Brandon Wimbush, Notre Dame

Heart of Dallas Bowl could leave Dallas after 2018 season

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If someone on the Dallas City Council doesn’t change their mind, the Heart of Dallas Bowl could leave the heart of Dallas after this season.

In March, the Dallas City Council rejected an $800,000 incentive package to keep the game and now, with $200,000 pitched in from the city’s tourism board, the City Council is also rejecting a $200,000 grant that would come from the Park and Recreation Department’s general fund. The grant would need 12 votes from the city’s 15-member board, and it currently has 11.

One member rejected the grant on grounds that it amounts to corporate welfare, while councilman Philip Kingston told the Dallas Morning News he was against it on football terms, saying the HOD Bowl is “a crime against the bowl system.”

The Heart of Dallas Bowl launched in 2010 after the Cotton Bowl Classic left the Cotton Bowl stadium for Arlington’s AT&T Stadium. While the Cotton Bowl Classic never struggled to draw fans to an outdoor game in Dallas’s dicey January weather, the Heart of Dallas Bowl has not benefitted from the Cotton Bowl Classic’s tradition and high-level tie-ins. The Heart of Dallas Bowl also faces a high level of competition from surrounding postseason games. In addition to the Cotton Bowl Classic, the Dallas-Fort Worth area also hosts the Frisco Bowl, the Armed Forces Bowl and the FCS National Championship.

The 2013 HOD Bowl drew 48,313 fans — good for a bowl game, but still roughly half of the Cotton Bowl’s 92,000 capacity — to see Oklahoma State’s 58-14 blowout of Purdue. But last year’s game failed to inspire Utah and West Virginia fans to spent the day after Christmas outdoors in Dallas to watch a 6-6 team beat a 7-5 team. Utah’s 30-14 win over WVU drew an announced crowd of 20,507 fans, but TV cameras showed a crowd closer to 2,000.

While the 2018 game is not in question, the 2019 Heart of Dallas Bowl would not take place unless a Dallas City Council member changes their mind.

“There is the option of looking at other facilities,” Heart of Dallas Bowl executive director Brant Ringler told the paper, “but we’re so far into the year right now, hopefully we’ll continue to play here.”

If the HOD Bowl survives at another location, it would not be the first time an ESPN-owned bowl moved from its home location. The Miami Beach Bowl lasted for three years before moving just up Highway 75 from the Heart of Dallas Bowl and becoming the Frisco Bowl.

Report: Oklahoma State P Zach Sinor undergoes hernia surgery

NCAA FOOTBALL: DEC 29 Alamo Bowl - Oklahoma State v Colorado
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I would think for a punter, this would be an especially troublesome medical issue.

Citing an unnamed source, The Oklahoman reported Tuesday that Zach Sinor underwent hernia surgery Tuesday morning. The Oklahoma State senior alluded to the medical procedure in an Instagram post Tuesday afternoon.

“[S]urgery went well! Thanks everyone for the support,” Sinor wrote on his private account.

The newspaper wrote that, “[d]epending on the severity of the hernia, Sinor’s recovery time could be as short as a week or two, or as long two months.” OSU opens the 2018 season three weeks from Thursday against FCS Missouri State. They open Big 12 play with a home game with Texas Tech Sept. 22.

Last season, Sinor’s 43.1 yards per punt was third in the conference, behind only Texas All-American Michael Dickson (47.4) and Kansas State’s Nick Walsh (43.6). His biggest claim to fame, however, was likely the Heisman Trophy campaign he launched for himself in the summer of 2017.

Oklahoma State new home for A&M grad transfer Kemah Siverand

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Nearly four months after leaving Texas A&M, Kemah Siverand has found a landing spot in the Aggies’ old conference home.

In a tweet posted to his personal Twitter account late last week, Siverand announced that he would be continuing his collegiate playing career at Oklahoma State. The announcement came on the same social media platform that the defensive back utilized to confirm his departure from A&M in mid-April.

As a graduate transfer, Siverand (pictured, left) will be eligible to play immediately for OSU in 2018. As an added bonus for the Cowboys, he’ll have a year of eligibility he can use in 2019 as well.

Siverand was a four-star member of A&M’s 2015 recruiting class. After beginning his collegiate career as a wide receiver, the Cypress, Tex., native moved to defensive back between the 2016 and 2017 seasons. He caught two passes for 16 yards in two games as a redshirt freshman in 2016, then was credited with six tackles in 12 games this past season.

Siverand’s decision to transfer came not long after Kevin Sumlin was fired (HERE) and Jimbo Fisher hired (HERE) as A&M’s head football coach.