01/20/18- Cameron Smith, Jr, Southern California, 6-1, 250 NFL Early Entries: College Winners and Losers: Winner/loser -- USC: There was buzz that redshirt sophomore quarterback Sam Darnold would come back for one more season, but it's hard to pass up being the potential No. 1 pick in the draft. The Trojans' offense was further cut off at the knees when it lost its two other biggest playmakers -- running back Ronald Jones II and receiver Deontay Burnett -- while the defense lost freakishly talented end Rasheem Green. Could have been worse: Offensive lineman Toa Lobendahn, linebackers Cameron Smith and Porter Gustin, and cornerback Iman Marshall are among top prospects who will be seniors in 2018. - Anthony Gimino, The Sports Xchange
01/19/18- Garrett Dolan, rSr, Houston Baptist, 6-1, 240 The NCAA handed Houston Baptist's football program two years of probation Friday along with a public reprimand and recruiting penalties after coach Vic Shealy failed to promote an atmosphere of compliance by creating his own student host program. Shealy asked his daughter to be a student host and she enlisted members of her sorority to be hosts and provide campus tours for prospects, the NCAA said. The program didn't work under the university's regular campus visit policy for host groups, which is against NCAA rules. Houston Baptist is a Football Championship Subdivision team that plays in the Southland Conference. Shealy has coached the team since its inception in 2013.
The probation runs through Jan. 18, 2020. Shealy will also be restricted from engaging in face-to-face recruiting visits with prospects and their families for the first week of the contact period in the next two years. The school must also limit its official football visits to 26 in each of the two years of probation. The university added several self-imposed penalties, including a reduction in the number of coaches participating in off-campus evaluations and reducing the total number of evaluation days. Shealy's recruiting activity will be reduced by two weeks this spring. - AP College Football
01/15/18- *Joel Iyiegbuniwe, rJr, Western Kentucky, 6-1, 230 Rising redshirt senior linebacker Joel Iyiegbuniwe will forgo his final season of eligibility on The Hill and enter the 2018 NFL Draft. "After much thought, prayer, and discussion with my family, coaches, and advisors, I have decided to enter the 2018 NFL Draft," Iyiegbuniwe said. "I would like to thank my family, teammates, and coaches for all of their support the last three years. Staying in Bowling Green to continue my college education was the best decision of my life. I am one credit hour away from graduating, and I will graduate this spring. All the memories, friendships, and lessons I have learned the last three years will last a lifetime."
In 2017, Iyiebuniwe led WKU with 116 total tackles, including 51 solo tackles, and his 11.5 tackles for loss also led the Red and White. His tackle numbers this season were the third-most in a single season in the FBS era, and his 200 career tackles rank him sixth in the FBS era. He capped his WKU career with an All-Conference USA First Team performance, the third-straight such honor for a WKU linebacker. - WKU Football
01/15/18- *Roquan Smith, Jr, Georgia, 6-0, 225 LB Roquan Smith, the Butkus Award winner as the nation's top linebacker, announced Monday he will enter the NFL Draft. Although it took him until the deadline day to declare, his decision comes as no surprise, considering he is a potential top 10 pick. NFLDraftScout.com rates him as the No. 9 prospect.
Smith (6-1, 225) led the charge on defense for Georgia, which lost 26-23 in overtime to Alabama in the national championship game. He made 137 tackles, including 14 for loss and 6.5 sacks, in 15 games. He earned SEC Defensive Player of the Year honors, was the Defensive MVP of the Rose Bowl victory over Oklahoma, and took home MVP honors in the SEC title game.
01/09/18- *Frank Ginda, Jr, San Jose State, 5-11, 245 2017 ALL-MOUNTAIN WEST FOOTBALL FIRST TEAM (COACHES/MEDIA): LB Frank Ginda Jr. San José State,...Ginda becomes the just second San Jose State linebacker to earn first-team Mountain West football honors since the Spartans joined the conference in 2013. The three-year starter established a new single season conference record and the eighth best total by a NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) player for tackles in a season with 173 in the team's 13-game season. His 13.31 tackles per game average presently ranks 20th best among FBS players since the 2000 season when the NCAA standardized defensive statistics. Ginda also led the Spartans in solo tackles with 94, 13.0 tackles for loss and three forced fumbles. - San Jose State Football
01/09/18- Shane Johnson, rSr, Coastal Carolina, 6-0, 245 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE SECOND TEAM (COACHES/MEDIA): Shane Johnson (Coastal Carolina, LB, Sr.),...Johnson (Philadelphia, Pa.) led the Sun Belt with 12.0 tackles per contest in league games, while ranking second overall with 10.1 stops per game -- two-tenths behind the overall league leader. Despite missing two-plus game due to injury early in the season, the senior became just the sixth Chanticleer with at least 100 tackles in a season, finishing with 101 and joining the likes of Quinn Backus (three times), Jamar Leath (two times), Mike McClure, Andrae Jacobs and Maurice Simpkins. Johnson was named the team's Defensive MVP twice in 2017. First, in his return to lineup versus Georgia State after the injury, he compiled a then career-high 12 tackles. Three weeks later versus Texas State, he tallied a career-high 19 tackles, one shy of the CCU single-game record.
A CCU graduate in communication (May 2017) and member of the Team Leadership Council, Johnson either lead the team or was second on the team in tackles in his final eight games, including a team-best 12 tackles versus Georgia State, nine at Arkansas State, nine at Appalachian State, a career-high 19 versus Texas State, seven at Arkansas, a team-best 11 versus Troy, a team-best 11 tackles at Idaho and a team-best 13 in his finale versus Georgia Southern. Even though Johnson has only played 31 career games, Johnson ranks seventh on the CCU career tackles list with 212. - Coastal Carolina Football
01/09/18- Gabe Loyd, Sr, Texas State, 6-1, 232 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE HONORABLE MENTION (COACHES/MEDIA): Gabe Loyd (Texas State, LB, Sr.),...Loyd was also a two-year captain and a semifinalist for the Campbell Trophy as the National Football Foundation's Top Student-Athlete. He was one of the top defenders in the Sun Belt Conference, ranking 10th in the league with two forced fumbles. Loyd was also 14th among Sun Belt leaders with 6.8 tackles per game (83 tackles total) and 10.0 tackles for loss this season. In addition, he had 4.5 sacks to rank 17th among Sun Belt leaders. Loyd had career-highs of 12 total tackles and 10 solo stops at Arkansas State. He also had 12 tackles at Colorado. Loyd is graduating with a bachelor's degree in criminal justice this December. - Texas State Football
01/09/18- Bryan London II, rSo, Texas State, 6-1, 232 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE HONORABLE MENTION (COACHES/MEDIA): Bryan London II (Texas State, LB, So.),...London served as a team captain in 2017 and led the Bobcats in tackles for the second-straight season. He was one of the top all-around defenders in the Sun Belt, ranking 10th with 7.6 tackles per game (91 tackles total) and two forced fumbles. He tallied 3.0 tackles for loss and had a career-high of 2.0 tackles for loss at Troy. London record 10 or more tackles in four games, with season-bests of 13 total tackles and 12 solo stops against New Mexico State. He also tallied 12 total tackles against Georgia State. London also led the Bobcats with five pass breakups. - Texas State Football
01/09/18- Darrell Songy, Sr, South Alabama, 6-0, 235 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE HONORABLE MENTION (COACHES/MEDIA): Darrell Songy (South Alabama, LB, Sr.),...Lawrence (Smiths Station, Ala.) was second on the squad and among the top 15 in the conference in tackles after recording a career-high 83 to go along with three forced fumbles and three passes defensed, while Barge (Moultrie, Ga.) was credited with a career-best 77 stops - including three behind the line of scrimmage - four quarterback hurries and a pair of forced fumbles as he was third on the team and in the top 25 in the SBC in tackles. Songy (New Orleans, La.) collected 62 stops with five for loss as well as four passes broken up and an interception in his final season at the collegiate level, and Middleton (Gadsden, Ala.) shared the team lead with 3˝ sacks among his 26 total stops, adding four quarterback hurries and a fumble recovery in his last year as a Jaguar. - South Alabama Football
01/09/18- Bull Barge, Jr, South Alabama, 5-10, 225 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE HONORABLE MENTION (COACHES/MEDIA): Bull Barge (South Alabama, LB, Jr.),...Lawrence (Smiths Station, Ala.) was second on the squad and among the top 15 in the conference in tackles after recording a career-high 83 to go along with three forced fumbles and three passes defensed, while Barge (Moultrie, Ga.) was credited with a career-best 77 stops - including three behind the line of scrimmage - four quarterback hurries and a pair of forced fumbles as he was third on the team and in the top 25 in the SBC in tackles. Songy (New Orleans, La.) collected 62 stops with five for loss as well as four passes broken up and an interception in his final season at the collegiate level, and Middleton (Gadsden, Ala.) shared the team lead with 3˝ sacks among his 26 total stops, adding four quarterback hurries and a fumble recovery in his last year as a Jaguar. - South Alabama Football
01/08/18- *Roquan Smith, Jr, Georgia, 6-0, 225 College Football Playoff national championship game: No. 3 Georgia (13-1) vs. No. 4 Alabama (12-1) at Atlanta, Monday, 8 p.m. ET (ESPN)...PLAYERS TO WATCH: Georgia: LB Roquan Smith. The Butkus Award winner as the nation's top linebacker and the only defensive player to finish in the top-10 of Heisman voting. Even in a game that featured 104 points and more than 1,000 yards of offense, Smith was one of the best players on the field in the Rose Bowl against Oklahoma. - AP College Football
01/08/18- Dalton Herrington, Sr, New Mexico State, 6-2, 230 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE FIRST TEAM (COACHES/MEDIA): Dalton Herrington (New Mexico State, LB, Sr.),...Herrington led the Sun Belt in tackles with 124, which included 15 for loss and 5.5 sacks. His 124 total tackles is 10th-most in the country amongst Football Bowl Subdivision players. Aside from leading the conference in tackles, the Halletsville, Texas native also added one interception on the year. - New Mexico State Football
01/07/18- Tony Lashley, rJr, Idaho, 6-0, 239 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE FIRST TEAM (COACHES/MEDIA): Tony Lashley (Idaho, LB, Jr.),...Lashley racked up 123 tackles on the season, the most by a Vandal since 2007, ranking second in the Sun Belt. His 6.5 solo stops per game are the top mark in the league and No. 5 nationally. Lashley registered seven games with double-digit tackles, including a career-best 16 three times. He had 14 tackles for loss, fourth most in the Sun Belt. The Kansas City, Mo., native was an honorable mention choice last season as a sophomore. - Idaho Football
01/07/18- Kyle Wilson, Sr, Arkansas State, 5-11, 231 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE SECOND TEAM (COACHES/MEDIA): Kyle Wilson (Arkansas State, LB, Sr.),...A-State's second-team choices were made up of Chris Murray (Sr., WR), Ronheen Bingham (Jr., DE), Kyle Wilson (Sr., LB) and Justin Clifton (Jr., DB). - Arkansas State Football
01/07/18- Ed Hall, Jr, Idaho, 6-0, 218 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE HONORABLE MENTION (COACHES/MEDIA): Ed Hall (Idaho, LB, Jr.),...Hall led the Vandals with three interceptions, while ranking third on the team at 78 tackles from his weak side linebacker position. - Idaho Football
01/05/18- Eric Boggs, Sr, Appalachian State, 6-2, 236 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE FIRST TEAM (COACHES/MEDIA): Eric Boggs (Appalachian State, LB, Sr.),...Boggs has been the leading tackler three times for a group that ranked first or second among Sun Belt teams in both points allowed per game and yards allowed per game in all three of those seasons. With 97 tackles, 8.5 tackles for loss, 4.0 sacks and two interceptions this year, he is the only active FBS player with at least 342 career tackles, 12.0 career sacks and eight career interceptions. - Appalachian State Football
01/05/18- Anthony Flory, Jr, Appalachian State, 6-1, 233 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE HONORABLE MENTION (COACHES/MEDIA): Anthony Flory (Appalachian State, LB, Jr.),...Within the honorable mention selections, Flory ranks second on the Mountaineers with 79 tackles, and Reed's five touchdown catches are second among Sun Belt tight ends. Stout's 38 tackles are tied for third among Sun Belt interior linemen this season, and Hennigan is tied for first among the nation's true freshmen with seven touchdown receptions. He has caught 44 passes for 556 yards and is coming off a four-touchdown performance against Louisiana. - Appalachian State Football
01/04/18- *Joel Iyiegbuniwe, rJr, Western Kentucky, 6-1, 230 2017 CONFERENCE USA FOOTBALL FIRST TEAM (COACHES): LB - Joel Iyiegbuniwe, Jr., WKU,...Iyiegbuniwe had 105 tackles (which led WKU, while ranking fifth in C-USA and t-36th in the nation) - including a team-high nine for loss - with three forced fumbles. The Bowling Green native made double-digit tackles in four games, including a career-high 15 in back-to-back weeks at Marshall and vs. Middle Tennessee. - Western Kentucky Football
01/04/18- *Roquan Smith, Jr, Georgia, 6-0, 225 2017 ASSOCIATED PRESS ALL-BOWL TEAM: Linebacker: Roquan Smith, Georgia (Rose): The Butkus Award winner made 11 tackles , including a key third-down stop in overtime that forced Oklahoma to kick a field when a touchdown would have won it for the Bulldogs. - AP College Football
01/04/18- T.J. Brunson, So, South Carolina, 6-0, 230 2017 ASSOCIATED PRESS ALL-BOWL TEAM: Linebacker: T.J. Brunson, South Carolina (Outback): Brunson made 13 tackles - including nine solos - and recorded two sacks to help the Gamecocks erase a 16-point deficit in a 26-19 victory over Michigan. - AP College Football
01/03/18- Alvin Jones, Sr, Texas-El Paso, 5-11, 230 2017 CONFERENCE USA FOOTBALL HONORABLE MENTION (COACHES): LB - Alvin Jones, Sr., UTEP,...Julian Jackson, Alvin Jones, Kalon Beverly, Devin Cockrell, Nik Needham, Alan Luna and Jake Sammut received All-C-USA honorable mentions. Jones led the Miners in tackles for a third consecutive season. The native of El Paso racked up a career-best 102 tackles during his senior campaign, while adding 47 solo stops, 10.5 tackles for loss and 4.5 sacks to lead the defense. Jones also ranked tied for third in C-USA and 17th in FBS with a trio of forced fumbles. Jones recorded 15 tackles against Arizona and LA Tech. - UTEP Football
01/02/18- D.J. Sanders, Sr, Middle Tennessee, 6-0, 233 2017 CONFERENCE USA FOOTBALL HONORABLE MENTION (COACHES): LB - DJ Sanders, Sr., Middle Tennessee,...This year's All-C-USA Honorable Mentions for MT are QB Brent Stockstill, OL Robert Behanan, OL Chandler Brewer, DL Walter Brady, LB D.J. Sanders, DB Reed Blankenship, DB Jovante Moffatt and K Canon Rooker. - Middle Tennessee Football
01/02/18- Jordyn Brooks, So, Texas Tech, 6-0, 240 2017 ALL-BIG 12 FOOTBALL HONORABLE MENTION (COACHES): Jordyn Brooks (LB),...14 Red Raiders – Madison Akamnonu, Cameron Batson, Jordyn Brooks, Travis Bruffy, Dylan Cantrell, Vaughnte Dorsey, Kolin Hill, Eli Howard, Dominic Panazzolo, Nic Shimonek, Paul Stawarz, Justin Stockton, Mychealon Thomas and Broderick Washington, Jr. – earned honorable mention accolades. - Texas Tech Football
01/02/18- Russell Farris, Sr, Louisiana Tech, 5-11, 232 2017 CONFERENCE USA FOOTBALL HONORABLE MENTION (COACHES): LB - Russell Farris, Sr., Louisiana Tech,...Louisiana Tech also had 11 players named Conference USA Honorable Mention, including Jarred Craft (RB), Boston Scott (RB), Kam McKnight (WR/TE), Rhashid Bonnette (WR), Joshua Outlaw (OL), Ethan Reed (OL), Jordan Bradford (DL), Deldrick Canty (DE), Russell Farris (LB), Dae'Von Washington (LB) and Jonathan Barnes (K). - Louisiana Tech Football
01/02/18- David Long Jr., rSo, West Virginia, 5-11, 222 2017 ALL-BIG 12 FOOTBALL HONORABLE MENTION (COACHES): David Long Jr (LB),...Earning honorable mention for the Mountaineers were Dravon Askew-Henry (DB), Al-Rasheed Benton (LB), Reese Donahue (DL), Will Grier (QB), David Long Jr (LB), Colton McKivitz (OL), Kenny Robinson (DB), Elijah Wellman (FB) and Ka'Raun White (WR). West Virginia finished the regular season with a 7-5 overall record and 5-4 in the conference, tying for fourth place. - West Virginia Football