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ACC announces full 2020 football schedule

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College hoops might be the focus for many along the eastern seaboard but planning can soon commence for the fall after the ACC released their full 2020 football schedule on Wednesday.

You can find the full composite ACC football schedule here or the team-by-team breakdown here.

“The accomplishments by our collective football programs over recent years has been remarkable and a compliment to our players, coaches and the leadership at our schools,” said ACC Commissioner John Swofford. “As we look ahead, there’s no shortage of excitement and anticipation for what the 2020 season will bring. Once again, our fans will have an opportunity to watch all of our games across a variety of platforms, including ACC Network which continues to be successful in showcasing our schools and programs.”

On top of the usual ACC slate of divisional and crossover games, Notre Dame will once again be featured heavily on the schedules of league opponents as a result of the school’s annual agreement with the conference. All told there will be six matchups involving the Irish, including a neutral site game against Wake Forest at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte (Sept. 26).  Notre Dame travels to both Pitt (Oct. 17) and Georgia Tech (Nov. 14) while Duke (Oct. 31), Clemson (Nov. 7) and Louisville (Nov. 21) will play in South Bend.

That game against the defending conference champ Tigers is particularly notable given the College Football Playoff implications it carries with Dabo Swinney’s group having a great shot at starting as the preseason No. 1 in 2020 and Brian Kelly likely fielding a top 15 (or higher) team.

Also interesting is the number of trips the ACC will make down to Atlanta for some big non-conference outings (which were obviously previously announced). Florida State will open the Mike Norvell era against West Virginia on Sept. 5 while Virginia plays SEC East champ Georgia on Labor Day. A week later, North Carolina plays Auburn as part of a very tough start to the season for Mack Brown and company with UCF and FCS powerhouse James Madison also on the docket.

We’ll see how it all sorts itself out come September but something says that for all the change that has gone on in the league, the end result of Clemson holding up the trophy probably isn’t going to change anytime soon.

LSU, two B1G schools will have most players on Super Bowl rosters

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The LSU Tigers football program represented the sport well in winning the 2019 national championship, and now they’re set to be well-represented when the next level crowns its Super Bowl champion as well.

Sunday afternoon, the Kansas City Chiefs again overcame an early deficit to beat the Tennessee Titans in the AFC Championship game. In the NFC championship game, the San Francisco 49ers pummeled the Green Bay Packers to earn a berth opposite the Chiefs in Super Bowl LIV. That game will be played at the home of the Miami Hurricanes, Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Feb. 2.

The 49ers, seeking their first Super Bowl win since 1994, have four former LSU football players currently listed on their official online roster*. The Chiefs, in search of their first title since 1969, have one former LSU football player on their Super Bowl roster. That total of five is tied for the most for a single school in this year’s game.

The number for LSU is matched by a pair of schools from the Big Ten — Iowa and Penn State — for the most players on Super Bowl rosters this year. Three former Nittany Lions and Hawkeyes play for the 49ers, two for the Chiefs.

Two SEC schools, Florida and Vanderbilt, each have four former players as part of the game, as does Stanford. Middle Tennessee State and San Diego State are two of a gaggle of schools with three players on teams playing in the game, which is the most of any Group of Five conference member.

Conference-wise, it was the SEC leading the way (again) with 32 players, followed by the Big Ten’s 22. The ACC (17), Pac-12 (16), Big 12 (12) and Conference USA (11) were the only other FBS leagues in double digits.

As for the other conferences?

  • Mountain West, nine
  • AAC, six
  • MAC, five
  • Sun Belt, four

Football independents accounted for six players. There were a total of 21 players who played at levels of football other than the FBS.

Below are all of the individual schools that will be represented on Super Sunday:

FIVE
Iowa
LSU
Penn State

FOUR
Florida
Stanford
Vanderbilt

THREE
Arizona
Auburn
Clemson
Kansas State
Middle Tennessee State
Mississippi State
Notre Dame
Ohio State
Oklahoma
Pittsburgh
San Diego State
South Carolina

TWO
Alabama
BYU
Central Michigan
Duke
FAU
Florida State
Georgia Southern
Michigan
Michigan State
NC State
Ole Miss
Oregon
Purdue
Southern Miss
Tennessee
Texas
Texas A&M
USF
Utah
Virginia

ONE
Air Force
Alabama A&M
Appalachian State
Arizona State
Arkansas
Baylor
Boston College
Bowling Green State
Buffalo
Cal
Cincinnati
Colorado
Colorado State
Colorado State-Pueblo
Eastern Illinois
Eastern Michigan
Eastern Washington
Georgia
Georgia Tech
Grand Valley State
Harvard
Hawaii
Illinois
Indiana
James Madison
Louisiana Tech
Louisiana
McGill (Canada)
Minnesota
Montana State
New Hampshire
New Mexico State
North Texas
Northern Illinois
Northern Iowa
Oklahoma State
Old Dominion
Oregon State
Princeton
Samford
San Diego
San Jose State
SMU
South Carolina State
TCU
Temple
Texas Tech
UConn
Utah State
Valdosta State
Villanova
Virginia Tech
Wagner
Washington
West Alabama
Western Illinois
Western Kentucky
Wyoming

(*Includes players on injured reserve, practice squad, etc.)

Alabama, Georgia Tech schedule future home-and-home

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We interrupt LSU Day here (and HERE and HERE and HERE) at CFT for some Alabama Crimson Tide football scheduling news.

Earlier Wednesday, both the Alabama Crimson Tide football program and their counterparts from Georgia Tech announced that the two schools had reached an agreement on a future home-and-home series.  The Crimson Tide will travel to Atlanta on Aug. 31, 2030, with the Yellow Jackets making their way to Tuscaloosa on Aug. 30 of the following season.

The two schools are actually old rivals, playing 52 times between 1902 and 1984.  That 1984 game, though, was the last meeting between ‘Bama and Tech.

The Tide leads the all-time series 28-21-3.

“We are excited to announce the addition of another outstanding home-and-home series,” Alabama Crimson Tide football head coach Nick Saban, who would be 78-years-old at the time of the first meeting in the home-and-home, said in a statement. “Our administration has made it a point over the past several years to continue to improve our schedule and this is another great example. Georgia Tech and Alabama have a long history of great football games and we are looking forward to continuing that tradition.”

“We’re excited to announce the additions of Alabama and Georgia State to our future football schedules,” Tech athletic director Todd Stansbury said in his statement. “In addition to being one of the nation’s top programs, Alabama is one of Georgia Tech’s oldest and most frequently played rivals, so we are very proud to renew the series for the first time in nearly half a century and allow new generations of fans to enjoy the excitement of the rivalry.”

Georgia Tech QB Lucas Johnson enters transfer portal

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Georgia Tech quarterback Lucas Johnson has announced he is entering the NCAA transfer portal. This will begin the process of evaluating all of Johnson’s options as he looks for a new program to suit up for in 2020.

“[My] family and I have decided that it is in my best interest to enter the transfer portal, as I have two years of eligibility left to play football,” Lucas said in his released statement via Twitter.

Johnson appeared in five games this season for Georgia Tech. He completed 21 of 37 pass attempts for 187 yards and a touchdown with one interception.

By entering the transfer portal, Johnson may have contact with any other college football program interested in recruiting him. As a graduate transfer, Johnson will be eligible to play with any other FBS program he transfers to in the 2020 season. And as noted by Johnson, he will have two seasons of eligibility remaining.

Barring any unforeseen changes, Georgia Tech’s passing game may still be led by James Graham in 2020. Graham appeared in 11 games for the Yellow Jackets and passed for 1,164 yards and 12 touchdowns with seven interceptions. But there could be a pretty open competition for the job beginning this spring with a pretty stocked quarterback position to sort through. Freshman Jordan Yates only appeared in three games last season, preserving a year of eligibility under the NCAA’s redshirt rule.

Death of 2020 Georgia Tech signee hit by freight train ruled a suicide

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The horrific death of a 2020 Georgia Tech signee by train has taken a turn toward the unimaginable.

Monday, Tech confirmed that Bryce Gowdy had died earlier in the day.  While the school didn’t reveal the cause of death, multiple media outlets reported that Gowdy died after being struck by a freight train in his hometown of Deerfield Beach, Fla.  The accident occurred at around 4:06 a.m. local time Monday morning.

According to CNN.com, the Broward County Medical Examiner’s office has since ruled that Gowdy’s death was a suicide. It had previously been reported that “the pedestrian (Gowdy) jumped in front of the train.”

Homicide detectives from the Broward Sheriff’s Office had been investigating Gowdy’s death.

Gowdy was set to begin classes at Tech Jan. 6.

“Our entire Georgia Tech football family is devastated by the news of Bryce’s passing,” first-year head football coach Geoff Collins said in a statement Monday. “Bryce was an outstanding young man with a very bright future. He was a great friend to many, including many of our current and incoming team members. On behalf of our coaches, players, staff and families, we offer our deepest condolences to Bryce’s mother, Shibbon, and his brothers, Brisai and Brayden, as well as the rest of his family members, his teammates and coaches at Deerfield Beach High School, and his many friends. Bryce and his family will always be a part of the Georgia Tech football family.”

Gowdy was a four-star member of Tech’s 2020 recruiting class. Only two signees in Collins’ class this cycle were rated higher than the 6-3, 210-pound Gowdy.

The wide receiver signed with the school in mid-December and was set to participate in spring practice.  And, again, he killed himself exactly one week before he was set to begin classes at Tech.

Sadly, this needs to be driven home.  Again.

Everybody needs help at some point.  Male or female, if you’ve gotten to that point, reach out for help.  It’s not a sign of weakness, it’s the ultimate sign of strength.  Talk to a family member, friend, co-worker, clergy, anyone.  If you’re too embarrassed to talk to someone you know, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is just a phone call away at 1-800-273-8255.

Just talk to someone.  Whether you believe it at the time or not, your life is worth it.