LSU Super Bowl
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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.)

Conference USA releases 2020 football schedule

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The calendar reads 2020 and now Conference USA is ready to start filling in dates this fall for the upcoming football campaign.

In a release issued on Wednesday, the league announced dates and opponents for their 2020 football schedule. You can find team-by-team schedules here or the overall composite week-by-week schedule here.

CUSA will once again play eight conference games and will essentially see the league slate from last season flip venues from home to road. The divisional alignment is set to remain the same, with 14 teams split evenly across an East and West Division.

There will be plenty of new faces for the upcoming campaign in the conference, including at reigning champion Florida Atlantic after Lane Kiffin’s departure to Ole Miss and the hiring of former Florida State head coach Willie TaggartJeff Traylor also takes over at UTSA and Ricky Rahne will be the new head coach at Old Dominion.

The Conference USA title game is also scheduled for Saturday, December 5 and will mark the quite the anniversary as the league begins its 25th season of play on the gridiron.

Marshall posts a league-high eight First Team All-Conference USA selections

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Florida Atlantic won the conference, but Marshall won the All-Conference USA team.

The Thundering Herd, who finished second to FAU in the East Division, placed eight players on the first team to FAU’s five. (However, three of the eight first-team Herd were specialists.)

The conference will not name individual awards until Wednesday, but here’s betting that Florida Atlantic will have the winner there. Sophomore quarterback Chris Robison threw for nearly 3,400 yards and 26 touchdowns, while tight end Harrison Bryant led all FBS tight ends with 61 grabs and 1,004 yards while scoring seven touchdowns.

Western Kentucky came in third with four first-team selections.


OFFENSE

QB- Chris Robison, R-So., Florida Atlantic
QB- J’Mar Smith, R-Sr., Louisiana Tech
RB- Benny LeMay, Sr., Charlotte
RB- Brenden Knox, R-So., Marshall
OL- Cameron Clark, R-Sr., Charlotte
OL- Junior Diaz, Gr., Florida Atlantic
OL- Brandon Walton, Sr., Florida Atlantic
OL- Levi Brown, R-Sr., Marshall
OL- Miles Pate, R-Sr., WKU
TE- Harrison Bryant, Sr., Florida Atlantic
WR- Jaelon Darden, Jr., North Texas
WR- Quez Watkins, R-Jr., Southern Miss
WR- Lucky Jackson, R-Sr., WKU

DEFENSE
DT- Channing Hames, R-Sr., Marshall
DT- Garrett Marino, R-Sr., UAB
DE- Alex Highsmith, R-Sr., Charlotte
DE- DeAngelo Malone, Jr., WKU
LB- Tavante Beckett, R-Jr., Marshall
LB- Blaze Alldredge, Jr., Rice
LB- Kristopher Moll, Jr., UAB
DB- Meiko Dotson, R-Jr., Florida Atlantic
DB- Amik Robertson, Jr., Louisiana Tech
DB- Chris Jackson, Sr., Marshall
DB- DQ Thomas, Sr., Southern Miss

SPECIAL TEAMS
K- Justin Rohrwasser, R-Sr., Marshall
P- John Haggerty, Jr., WKU
KR- Jaylond Adams, R-So., Southern Miss
PR- Talik Keaton, Fr., Marshall
LS – Matt Beardall, Sr., Marshall

Penn State OC Ricky Rahne hired by Old Dominion to be head coach

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Old Dominion’s search for a head coach may have come to a close. Penn State offensive coordinator Ricky Rahne will be named the next head coach of the Monarchs, according to a report from FootballScoop.com.

Old Dominion has yet to officially announce the hiring the time of this post, but that could be coming shortly (in which case this post will be updated with the official confirmation from the school).

Rahne has been a part of the Penn State coaching staff under James Franklin since 2014. Rahne came to Penn State from Vanderbilt with Franklin after coaching on Franklin’s Vanderbilt staff for three seasons. Rahne served as an interim offensive coordinator in 2015 for Penn State’s bowl game following the firing of offensive coordinator John Donovan. Rahne remained as the quarterback coach when Penn State hired Joe Moorhead to be the offensive coordinator. Rahne was given the permanent title of offensive coordinator after the 2017 season after Moorhead was hired to be the head coach at Mississippi State.

It is unknown at this time if Rahne will stay on board Penn State’s coaching staff to coach the offense in the Cotton Bowl against Memphis, thus pulling double-duty coaching the Penn State offense and taking over control as head coach at Old Dominion. Expect that to be addressed whenever Rahne gets a chance to address the media following a formal introduction.

Rahne would replace Bobby Wilder as head coach of Old Dominion. Wilder resigned from the position earlier this month after 13 years with the school, including 11 seasons. Wilder helped to start up the football program from scratch in 2007 and compiled a record of 77-56 as the program ascended quickly to join Conference USA at the FBS level.

UPDATE (6:30 p.m. ET) – Old Dominion has officially announced the hire. Rahne will formally be introduced on Wednesday.

Bobby Wilder resigns at Old Dominion

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Another coaching domino has fallen, as Bobby Wilder is out at Old Dominion.

“I have resigned as head coach of the ODU football program as I feel it’s in the best interest for this program going forward,” Wilder said Monday. “I have poured my heart and soul into this university and our football program, but I feel this is the best decision for Old Dominion University. I plan to be an asset throughout the transition for the University.

“I would like to thank President Broderick for the opportunity he gave me 13 years ago to coach at Old Dominion University.”

The only head coach the program has ever known, Wilder started toe ODU program in 2007 and went 77-56 in 11 seasons. Highlights over that span include trips to the FCS playoffs in 2011-12 and a share of the Conference USA East Division championship with a Bahamas Bowl victory in 2016.

That 2016 breakthrough proved to be a peak, though. The Monarchs went 5-7 in 2017, 4-8 last season and 1-11 this fall, concluding with a 38-22 loss to Charlotte — a program younger than ODU but headed, coincidentally, to the Bahamas Bowl this month.

“Coach Wilder has dedicated the last 13 years of his professional career in the pursuit of excellence for ODU football,” ODU president John Broderick said. “I am extremely grateful to Bobby Wilder, our assistant coaches, our student athletes and our football support staff. Collectively they have given everything of themselves. They have represented ODU with class and dignity.”

A national search is underway to find the second head Monarch, and Shane Beamer will be a name to watch here.