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Alabama (still) a massive favorite over Louisville, other Week 1 lines

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It’s been about four months since we checked in on the Week 1 betting lines in college football, highlighted by Alabama’s installation as a massive favorite for its date with Louisville in Orlando.

And in the four months since, the public has clearly lost faith in the Nick Saban Football Machine.

After starting as a 29.5-point favorite, Alabama has been downgraded… to a 28.5-point favorite, according to lines released by Bet Online.

Other lines of note:

  • UCF (-20.5) at Connecticut
  • Northwestern (+4.5) at Purdue
  • Colorado (-6) vs. Colorado State (at Denver)
  • San Diego State (+14.5) at Stanford
  • Florida Atlantic (+23) at Oklahoma
  • Oregon State (+38) at Ohio State
  • Texas (-10.5) at Maryland
  • Boise State (-10.5) at Troy
  • Arizona (-14) vs. BYU (at Phoenix)
  • Auburn (-3.5) vs. Washington (at Atlanta)
  • Ole Miss (-1.5) vs. Texas Tech (at Houston)
  • West Virginia (-7) vs. Tennessee (at Charlotte)
  • North Carolina (+6) at California
  • Michigan (+2) at Notre Dame
  • Alabama (-28.5) vs. Louisville (at Orlando)
  • Miami (-3) vs. LSU (at Dallas)
  • Virginia Tech (+6.5) at Florida State

Check out the entire list of lines here.

Pac-12 announces record $509 million in revenue, school distribution of $30.9 million each

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While Pac-12 fans may still grumble about the performance of Commissioner Larry Scott or the lack of distribution for the conference’s networks, there’s still plenty of dough being raked in by the league.

Following the Pac-12 spring meetings in Arizona this week, the conference announced a record $509 million in total revenue for the 2016-17 fiscal year that was a four percent increase year-over-year. The distribution to schools also reached an all-time high at $371 million total (roughly $30.9 million per school), an 8% increase.

“The Pac-12 is committed to supporting the academic mission and athletic values of our universities, and we are pleased with the continued financial growth that supports this mission,” said Scott in a statement.  “This commitment is core to our Pac-12 Networks, which annually showcases to a national audience 850 live Pac-12 events, including an unprecedented number of football, basketball, Olympic and women’s sports.”
“The strong financial performance recorded by the Pac-12 Conference provides valuable resources to our universities to support our educational and athletic goals, including opportunities for the over 7,000 student-athletes competing on our Pac-12 campuses,” added USC President and Chairman of the Pac-12 CEO Group, Max Nikias.
As big as those numbers sound, they still are a tad behind their Power Five peers. The Big 12 recently announced a smaller $371 million in total revenue but a slightly bigger $34.3 million per school. Then there’s the SEC, which had over $650 million in total revenue and just over $41 million per school.
Still, it’s not like the Pac-12 is in the poor house after raking in half a billion dollars last year.

Tim Drevno’s resignation letter to Michigan made public

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It appears we can finally, officially, put the Tim Drevno era at Michigan to bed.

In February, three days after Jim McElwain was officially hired as U-M’s quarterbacks coach and amidst rumors that the former Florida head coach could take over play-calling duties, Drevno announced that he would be stepping down as the Wolverines’ offensive coordinator. Drevno also served as the program’s offensive line coach.

Two months later, mlive.com obtained a copy of the coach’s resignation letter through the Freedom of Information Act. Drevno gave no specific reason for his resignation in the letter, stating only that he is “willing to help in any manner needed during the transition phase, but I fully understand if it is more appropriate to amicably sever ties in a more expedient way.”

Eight days after he left U-M, Drevno’s name was connected to a job at USC; two days later, the Trojans announced his hiring as running backs coach.  This marks his second stint in the Land of Troy as he was line coach and running-game coordinator in 2014.

Drevno, who was also on Jim Harbaugh‘s staffs at Stanford and with the San Francisco 49ers, spent the past three seasons in Ann Arbor. Under Drevno’s direction, the Wolverines’ offense was tied for 91st nationally in averaging 25.2 points per game this past season.

Stanford awards Jack Richardson a scholarship after walk-on was only QB available for spring practice

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Every team can claim to be a little beat up during spring practice but few have had to deal with the situation Stanford found themselves in the past few months without a scholarship quarterback available. Yep, not a single one.

Incumbent starter K.J. Costello is still dealing with a hip injury and freshman backup Davis Mills continues to recover from a knee injury in high school. Keller Chryst transferred to Tennessee to really force the issue, which has resulted walk-on Jack Richardson and offensive coordinator Tavita Pritchard (yes, really) taking most of the snaps under center for the team this spring.

Well, there is some good news to come out of the tough situation as head coach David Shaw awarded Richardson a scholarship after Saturday’s Cardinal and White spring game.

“After the team broke it down, coach Shaw took me and my family aside and put me on scholarship,” the quarterback told Pac-12 Networks afterward. “It means a lot. Being a walk-on, it makes you appreciate the grind of school work and stuff like what my parents have sacrificed to allow me to come here. On a personal level, that was one of my goals — to earn a scholarship.

“I just got done being in tears.”

Kudos to the Cardinal for rewarding the signal-caller after all that extra work this spring. Given that recent signee Tanner McKee won’t be on campus for two years after a mission trip, Richardson seems like he will remain a key part of the quarterback room beyond just this upcoming season too.

LSU announces signing of Stanford transfer Terrence Alexander

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Because of early losses to the NFL — Donte Jackson (HERE) and Kevin Toliver (HERE) — as well as a hit on National Signing Day — losing five-star Patrick Surtain Jr. to rival Alabama — Ed Orgeron had made it crystal clear that LSU was in the market for a graduate transfer in the secondary.  Thursday morning, the head coach officially got his man.

LSU announced earlier in the day today that Terrence Alexander has signed with the football program.  The announcement comes not long after the cornerback took an official visit to the Baton Rouge campus.

It had been confirmed early last month that Alexander would be transferring from Stanford.  As he will be coming in as a graduate of his now-former university, the defensive back will be eligible to play immediately this coming season, which will be his final year of eligibility.

A three-star member of Stanford’s 2014 recruiting class, Alexander was rated as the No. 23 player at any position in the state of Louisiana coming out of high school in New Orleans. He played in a total of 40 games his first three seasons before an injury in the 2017 opener cost him the remainder of the season.

Because of that injury, Alexander was granted a medical redshirt for the 2017 season.