01/20/18- Nic Shimonek, Sr, Texas Tech, 6-3, 218 Nic Shimonek threw a touchdown to Steven Dunbar as the West defeated the East 14-10 in the annual East-West Shrine Game Saturday at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. The Texas Tech quarterback completed 12 of 18 passes for 108 yards to lead the West. Colorado's Phillip Lindsay was the game's leading rusher with 51 yards on 12 carries. Dunbar, a wide receiver out of Houston University, caught three passes for 52 yards. Down 10-7, he caught the winning touchdown with just 1:23 left in the fourth quarter. Wisconsin's Natrell Jamerson put the West on the board with a 68-yard fumble recovery for a 7-0 lead. After a Drew Brown field goal from 33 yards out cut the East's deficit to 7-3 with just 3 seconds left in the half, Ohio State quarterback J.T. Barrett hooked up with receiver Marcus Martin on a 4-yard TD pass to give the East the lead with 1:57 remaining in the third quarter. Barrett threw for just 69 yards on 5-of-13 passing, but it led the East. Northern Iowa's Daurice Fountain led all receivers with 61 yards on three catches. The West outgained the East 261-238 in offensive yards. - The Sports Xchange
01/20/18- Baker Mayfield, rSr, Oklahoma, 6-0, 220 Reigning Heisman Trophy winner Baker Mayfield appeared to call his shot well ahead of the 2018 NFL Draft. With Dolphins wide receiver Kenny Stills making an Instagram appearance on Thursday, Mayfield chimed in with the following hashtag: "#GetMeToMiami." After an initial spark over social media, Mayfield attempted to douse the flames by citing his ties with his fellow former Sooners player in Stills. "Just so everybody knows... I commented about playing for Miami because I was talking to a former Sooner in Kenny Stills," Mayfield wrote on Twitter. "Everybody can relax, I will play anywhere that gives me a chance. I'm not picky, I will go anywhere and strive to uplift a franchise and win ball games. The Dolphins, who own the 11th overall pick in the draft, dealt with quarterback issues after Ryan Tannehill sustained a torn ACL in the summer. Jay Cutler came out of retirement, but Miami failed to find its stride and finished with a 6-10 mark. Mayfield completed 70.5 percent of his passes and threw for 43 touchdowns and six interceptions this season with Oklahoma. - The Sports Xchange
01/20/18- Demry Croft, rSo, Tennessee State, 6-4, 205 Tennessee State has added four Football Bowl Subdivision transfers with the arrivals of former Alabama linebacker Mekhi Brown, Minnesota quarterback Demry Croft, Illinois linebacker Christion Abercrombie and Connecticut defensive back John Robinson IV. All four are eligible to participate in spring practice with Tennessee State this year. Brown had seven tackles for Alabama this past season. He was caught on camera shoving an Alabama staffer on the sidelines after being penalized for unsportsmanlike conduct during the College Football Playoff championship game. Croft made six starts in 2017 and completed 41.5 percent of his passes for 674 yards with four touchdowns and seven interceptions. He ran for 311 yards and four touchdowns. Abercrombie had 11 tackles and Robinson had two tackles this past season. - AP College Football
01/19/18- Zerrick Cooper, rFr, Clemson, 6-1, 220 Clemson reserve quarterback Zerrick Cooper is leaving the Tigers. Cooper announced his decision on Twitter on Friday. Cooper is a 6-foot-2, 220-pound redshirt freshman from Jonesboro, Georgia. He played in seven games this season behind starter Kelly Bryant, passing for 256 yards and two touchdowns. Cooper would've been part of a crowded quarterback room of young passers this fall seeking playing time with Bryant returning for his senior year. The Tigers have highly regarded young prospects in Hunter Johnson and Trevor Lawrence looking to move up the depth chart when spring practice starts. Cooper said in his post he would miss the team. But after talking with family thought the best thing for him was to leave because he wanted to play and compete. - AP College Football
01/18/18- Baker Mayfield, rSr, Oklahoma, 6-0, 220 2017 MANNING AWARD WINNER: Reigning Heisman Trophy winner Baker Mayfield was named the recipient of the 2017 Manning Award on Thursday. The Oklahoma quarterback passed for 4,627 yards and 43 touchdowns this season to claim the honor, which is given to the nation's top college quarterback. It is the only award to consider postseason performances in voting by a national media panel as well as Archie, Peyton and Eli Manning. Mayfield led the Sooners to a Big 12 championship and a semifinal berth in the College Football Playoff. "To say he took a different path to success would be an understatement," Archie Manning said in a statement. "I doubt there's ever been a player who walked on to two different teams and reached this level of success." Mayfield left Texas Tech due to communication issues with the coaching staff and then enrolled at Oklahoma in January 2014. He joined the Sooners as a walk-on a month later and was named the starting quarterback for 2015. Mayfield won the Manning Award over the following finalists: Ohio State's J.T. Barrett, Clemson's Kelly Bryant, USC's Sam Darnold, Alabama's Jalen Hurts, Louisville's Lamar Jackson, Penn State's Trace McSorley, Central Florida's McKenzie Milton, Oklahoma State's Mason Rudolph, Auburn's Jarrett Stidham and Arizona's Khalil Tate. Former Clemson star Deshaun Watson was the recipient of the previous two Manning Awards. - The Sports Xchange
01/18/18- Mason Rudolph, Sr, Oklahoma State, 6-4, 230 A sprained left foot will keep Oklahoma State quarterback Mason Rudolph out of the Senior Bowl, according to an NFL Media report Wednesday. Nebraska quarterback Tanner Lee is expected to replace Rudolph on the roster for the annual all-star game in Mobile, Ala. The injury is not serious enough to require surgery, but the initial recommendation from doctors was two weeks of rest. That should give Rudolph enough time to heal before the NFL Combine in February. The 6-foot-4, 230-pound Rudolph will still participate in measurements and interviews at the Senior Bowl, but he won't have a chance to improve his NFL Draft stock in practices. NFLDraftScout.com ranks Rudolph as the sixth-best quarterback prospect in 2018 and a likely second-round pick.
At Oklahoma State, Rudolph completed 63.2 percent of his passes for 13,618 yards and 92 touchdowns with 26 interceptions during his four-year career. Rudolph's absence leaves the Senior Bowl with a quarterback group that includes Heisman Trophy winner Baker Mayfield of Oklahoma, Wyoming's Josh Allen, Virginia's Kurt Benkert, Washington State's Luke Falk, Richmond's Kyle Lauletta, Western Kentucky's Mike White, Troy's Brandon Silvers and Lee. The 6-4, 220-pound Lee passed for 3,143 yards and 23 touchdowns with 16 interceptions last season at Nebraska. He is rated as the No. 23 quarterback prospect by NFLDraftScout.com. - The Sports Xchange
01/18/18- Jason Driskel, rJr, Florida Atlantic, 6-2, 210 Jason Driskel is ready for the real world. The Florida Atlantic quarterback announced Thursday that he's ending his football career, even though he would have been eligible to return to the Owls next season. Driskel is about to graduate with a civil engineering degree. "It was always a dream of mine to play quarterback at the FBS level and I'm proud of accomplishing that goal," Driskel wrote in a social media post . "It has never been a dream of mine, however, to play football beyond college."
Driskel helped lead the Owls to an 11-3 season in 2017, along with a Conference USA championship and a win in the Boca Raton Bowl. He completed 67 percent of his passes this past season for 2,247 yards and 15 touchdowns, while throwing only four interceptions. Driskel was the offensive MVP of FAU's 50-3 win over Akron in the Boca Raton Bowl, throwing for 270 yards and two touchdowns and running for another two scores. "I undoubtedly will miss my teammates and the game with all of its trials and tribulations, but I will not regret the decision to move into the next chapter of my life," Driskel wrote. He thanked several coaches for their help at FAU, including current Owls head coach Lane Kiffin and former coaches Charlie Partridge and Brian Wright. Driskel said Partridge honored his commitment to FAU "when he didn't have to," and Wright "saw in me what a lot of others did not." - AP College Football
01/18/18- Shane Buechele, So, Texas, 6-1, 205 Texas quarterback Shane Buechele will undergo surgery for a torn muscle in his hip and abdomen area but should return in time for spring practice in March. Buechele was the full-time starter as a freshman in 2016 then split starts with freshman Shane Ehlinger in 2017. Buechele started the Longhorns' win over Missouri in the Texas Bowl. Buechele played only the first half of the Texas Bowl but didn't play in the second. Texas officials said he tore a hip abductor in the game but the injury wasn't announced until Wednesday night. Surgery was scheduled for Thursday. Buechele passed for 1,405 yards and seven touchdowns in nine games in 2017. - AP College Football
01/17/18- Jeff George Jr., rSo, Illinois, 6-2, 215 QB Jeff George Jr. is leaving the school as a graduate transfer to seek an opportunity elsewhere. George, the son of former NFL quarterback Jeff George, announced Wednesday on Twitter his intentions not return for his final two years with the Fighting Illini. As a graduate transfer, he would be eligible to play immediately for another FBS program. George was one of three Illinois quarterbacks who played last season. In seven games, he passed for 1,273 yards and seven touchdowns but was intercepted 10 times.
01/17/18- Tyler Hilinski, rSo, Washington State, 6-2, 213 Washington State quarterback Tyler Hilinski has died from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound. The 21-year-old Hilinski was discovered in his apartment after he didn't show up for practice Tuesday. A rifle "was recovered next to Hilinski and a suicide note was found," according to the Pullman Police Department. Hilinski was the presumptive starting quarterback going into next season. He started Washington State's Holiday Bowl loss to Michigan State after Luke Falk was unable to play due to a wrist injury. Washington State president Kirk Schulz tweeted, "Our thoughts and prayers are with the Hilinski family."
Hilinski appeared in eight games during his sophomore season, throwing for 1,176 yards and seven touchdowns. His most memorable outing came in the second week of the season when he led Washington State from a 21-point deficit in the fourth quarter to beat Boise State 47-44 in triple overtime. Hilinski threw for 240 yards and three touchdowns coming off the bench. His only start came in the bowl game against Michigan State, although he played extensively in a loss to Arizona. Former Washington State linebackers coach Roy Manning, who recently left for a position at UCLA, tweeted , "Words can't describe what I'm feeling right now. My heart is beyond saddened. Please pray for the family and all of us affected!" Hilinski is from Claremont, California, and went to high school at nearby Upland. He arrived on campus in 2015 and redshirted before appearing in four games in 2016. - AP College Football
01/16/18- Kyle Kempt, rSr, Iowa State, 6-4, 210 Iowa State still is hoping the NCAA grants a sixth season of eligibility to quarterback Kyle Kempt, who led the Cyclones to an 8-5 record last season, including a win over Oklahoma. Kempt has not yet received a verdict from the NCAA regarding his petition for another season of eligibility, according to the Des Moines Register. "I feel confident that we can come out of this as good or better at quarterback than we've ever been at Iowa State," coach Matt Campbell said Monday during an interview with the Register. "It's a really fluid situation right now. The percentages continue to go back and forth -- yes, we think Kyle will be back, no we don't think he'll be back, and yes he will. It's a little unsettling, but we have to prepare as if Kyle wouldn't be coming back." Kempt was listed as a senior during the 2017 season, but is referring to the "run off rule" in his attempt to get another season.
The NCAA can grant additional years to players who are "run off" from their original four-year schools. Kempt signed with Oregon State originally, but did not play in his two seasons there. "They told me I wasn't going to play there," Kempt told the Register. Kempt spent the 2015 season at Hutchinson Community College in Kansas, then joined the Iowa State roster. He was on the Cyclones' scout team in 2016, but had a breakout game in 2017 against Oklahoma, hitting 18 of 24 passes for 343 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions in a 38-31 win on the road. Kempt did not throw a pass in FBS competition before that game. - The Sports Xchange
01/15/18- K.J. Carta-Samuels, rJr, UCLA, 6-1, 221 QB K.J. Carta-Samuels is leaving as a graduate transfer for UCLA, CBS Sports reported Monday. Carta-Samuels, who served as Jake Browning's backup the past two seasons, will enroll at UCLA this spring and be eligible to play in the fall. He will stay in the Pac-12 and have one year of eligibility remaining. Carta-Samuels leaves Washington with 27 of 47 career completions for 310 yards and three touchdowns in 25 games.
01/15/18- Quinten Dormady, Jr, Tennessee, 6-3, 222 Quarterback Quinten Dormady is leaving Tennessee after a junior year in which he lost his starting job and suffered a season-ending injury. Dormady tweeted Monday that "after weeks of reflection, I've decided to complete my degree from Tennessee and transfer for my final year of eligibility." Dormady, who is 6-foot-4 and from Boerne, Texas, started Tennessee's first five games this past season. He completed 55.5 percent of his passes for 925 yards with six touchdowns and six interceptions. He was replaced by Jarrett Guarantano midway through the year and later underwent season-ending shoulder surgery. Dormady tweeted that "I am making great progress every day with the help of my family, my friends and doctors." Dormady's decision leaves Guarantano, Will McBride and incoming freshman JT Shrout as Tennessee's scholarship quarterbacks. - AP College Football
01/15/18- Jalan McClendon, rJr, North Carolina State, 6-4, 221 North Carolina State redshirt senior quarterback Jalan McClendon will play elsewhere next season as a graduate transfer.The school announced McClendon's decision Monday. He is scheduled to graduate in May and has a year of eligibility remaining. McClendon was in position to inherit the starting job when Jacoby Brissett headed to the NFL after the 2015 season. But Boise State graduate transfer Ryan Finley arrived with experience in new coordinator Eli Drinkwitz's system and won the starting job for 2016. McClendon has been Finley's backup ever since, throwing just three passes last season. Finley recently announced he's returning for his final season instead of entering the NFL draft. In a statement, McClendon said he "enjoyed every bit of this university." - AP College Football
01/14/18- *Chase Litton, rJr, Marshall, 6-5, 232 QB Chase Litton is skipping his senior season to enter the NFL Draft, the school announced Sunday. Litton (6-6, 232) started 34 games for the Thundering Herd and leaves fourth on the school career list in completions (727), fifth in passing yards (8,332) and fourth in touchdowns (72).
01/12/18- Jacob Eason, So, Georgia, 6-4, 235 Quarterback Jacob Eason said Friday he is leaving Georgia, an expected decision after he lost his starting job to freshman Jake Fromm. Eason made the announcement on his Twitter account. "Thank you UGA for an incredible two years," he wrote. "The memories and relationships I have made will truly last a lifetime. I will miss suiting up in red and black, but Athens will always be a place I can call home." Eason didn't indicate where he intends to play next, but The Seattle Times reported this week that he is expected to transfer to Washington. Eason played his high school football at Lake Stevens, Washington, and would be in position to take over the Huskies' starting job after sitting out a year under the NCAA's transfer rules. Jake Browning is returning for his senior season at Washington, which is expected to be one of the nation's top teams in 2018.
After starting for Georgia as a freshman, Eason began this season as the No. 1 signal-caller ahead of Fromm. But a knee injury in the opener against Appalachian State knocked Eason out of the lineup, and he never got the job back. Fromm guided the Bulldogs to a 13-2 record, their first Southeastern Conference title since 2005 , a thrilling victory in the Rose Bowl and a spot in the national championship game against Alabama. The Tide rallied from a pair of 13-point deficits to beat Georgia 26-23 in overtime. Eason was a five-star recruit who initially committed to the Bulldogs with former coach Mark Richt. After Richt was fired, Eason hinted that he might go to another school but wound up staying at Georgia under new coach Kirby Smart in 2016. As a freshman, Eason completed 55 percent of his throws for 2,430 yards and 16 touchdowns, with eight interceptions. - AP College Football
01/10/18- *Josh Allen, rJr, Wyoming, 6-4, 240 Wyoming's Josh Allen has accepted an invitation to the Senior Bowl, becoming the eighth and final quarterback for the game that is considered the nation's premier showcase for NFL prospects. Allen isn't a senior, but fourth-year juniors that have graduated are eligible to participate in contest. Allen, who is projected to be a first-round selection by Rob Rang of NFLDraftScout.com, completed 56 percent of his passes and threw for 1,966 yards with 19 touchdowns. He also rushed for 201 yards and five scores. Allen joins Heisman Trophy winner Baker Mayfield of Oklahoma and Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award winner Mason Rudloph of Oklahoma State in the game to be played at Mobile, Ala. The other five quarterbacks on the roster are Western Kentucky's Mike White, Richmond's Kyle Lauletta, Washington State's Luke Falk, Virginia's Kurt Benkert and Troy's Brandon Silvers. The staffs of the Houston Texans (South) and Denver Broncos (North) will coach the game. - The Sports Xchange
01/10/18- *Josh Allen, rJr, Wyoming, 6-4, 240 2017 ALL-MOUNTAIN WEST FOOTBALL HONORABLE MENTION (COACHES/MEDIA): Josh Allen, Sr., QB,...Allen led a very young Cowboy offense in 2017. The junior engineered three game-winning scoring drives late in games this season versus Hawai'i (in overtime), at Utah State (with 3:45 remaining in the 4th quarter) and versus Colorado State (with 4:21 left in the 4th quarter). The leadership the two-year team captain showed throughout the season in leading Wyoming to a 7-5 record and a second-place finish in the Mountain Division at 5-3 was immeasurable. Allen ranked No. 5 in the league in points responsible for (10.8 points per game) and No. 5 in pass completions per game (14.10 completions per game). Allen threw 13 touchdown passes this season and only six interceptions, while rushing for another five TDs. He has helped lead the Cowboys to back-to-back winning seasons and back-to-back bowl appearances the past two seasons. He was unable to play the final two games of the regular season after suffering a shoulder injury in a road win at Air Force. - Wyoming Football
01/09/18- Brandon Silvers, rSr, Troy, 6-2, 219 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE HONORABLE MENTION (COACHES/MEDIA): Brandon Silvers (Troy, QB, Sr.),...Silvers completed 62.9 percent of his passes for 2,985 yards with 13 touchdowns and just six interceptions. Among quarterbacks with at least 400 passing attempts nationally, Silvers ranks third with an interception just once every 68.7 pass attempts. He ranks third in Sun Belt history in career completions (945), fourth in passing yards (10,379) and fifth in touchdowns (67). - Troy Football
01/09/18- Drew Lock, Jr, Missouri, 6-3, 225 QB Drew Lock is staying with the Missouri Tigers for his final year after he considered taking the plunge into the 2018 NFL draft, the school announced Tuesday. As a junior in 2017, Lock led the Southeastern Conference with 304.9 passing yards per game and set school and SEC records with 44 touchdown passes while throwing 13 interceptions. With Lock helping to lead the way, Missouri finished with seven wins this past season and made its first bowl appearance since 2014. Lock will join eight other returning starters next fall at Missouri. And with seven returning starters on defense, the Tigers are optimistic about 2018.
01/09/18- Jacob Eason, So, Georgia, 6-4, 235 Sophomore Jacob Eason, who was Georgia's starting quarterback when the 2017 season began, is expected to transfer to Washington, the Seattle Times reported Tuesday. This does not come as a surprise based on a series of events that seems likely to push Eason back to third string next season. As a true freshman, Eason started the final 12 games of the 2016 season after replacing Greyson Lambert in the opener. Eason then started the 2017 opener against Appalachian State, but he suffered a knee injury that knocked him out of the game. He was replaced by true freshman Jake Fromm, who led the Bulldogs to a berth in the national championship game before losing in overtime to Alabama.
Besides Fromm, Georgia is adding Justin Fields, ranked the nation's No. 1 overall recruit in the class of 2018 by ESPN. A dual-threat quarterback, Fields announced he plans to enroll at Georgia this winter, allowing him to participate in spring football. Eason is from the state of Washington and played his high school football at Lake Stevens, which is about a 40-mile drive to Seattle. If Eason does, in fact, transfer to Washington, he would be required to sit out the 2018 season, then would have two seasons of college eligibility remaining. Eason was 4 of 7 for 28 yards this past season. He completed 55.1 percent of his passes with 16 touchdown passes and eight interceptions in 2016, when the Bulldogs finished 8-5. - The Sports Xchange
01/09/18- Tua Tagovailoa, Fr, Alabama, 6-1, 219 Alabama freshman quarterback Tua Tagovailoa has been named offensive player of the College Football Playoff championship game after leading the Crimson Tide to a come-from-behind 26-23 overtime win over Georgia. Tagovailoa replaced an ineffective Jalen Hurts to start the second half and led the Tide back from deficits of 13-0 at half and 20-7 in the middle of the third quarter. He completed 14 of 24 passes for 166 yards and three touchdowns, including the winning 41-yarder in overtime. The former prep star from Hawaii also ran 12 times for 27 yards. - AP College Football
01/09/18- Tua Tagovailoa, Fr, Alabama, 6-1, 219 Alabama's 26-23 thriller over Georgia was the first national championship game to go to overtime since 2003. That's the year Ohio State outlasted Miami 31-24 in double overtime at the Fiesta Bowl in a game that settled the BCS Championship. There have been some close games since, including the 41-38 Rose Bowl classic in 2006 when Texas beat Southern California. Two years ago, Alabama beat Clemson 45-40 and then the Tigers returned the favor last season with a 35-31 win decided on a last-second touchdown pass. This year's OT game was settled on a 41-yard TD pass from Tua Tagovailoa to DeVonta Smith. - AP College Football
01/09/18- Tyler Rogers, rSr, New Mexico State, 6-2, 218 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE THIRD TEAM (COACHES/MEDIA): Tyler Rogers (New Mexico State, QB, RS-Sr.),...Rogers led the Sun Belt with 3,825 passing yards and finished third with 26 touchdowns. The Peoria, Ariz., native capped off the regular-season ranked second in completions per game (29.0), fifth in passing yards (3,825), second in passing yards per game (347.7), 16th in touchdowns (26) and sixth in total offense (348.1). - New Mexico State Football
01/09/18- Tua Tagovailoa, Fr, Alabama, 6-1, 219 Nick Saban made a quarterback switch at halftime and Alabama has its fifth national championship in nine years thanks to wild overtime victory. Tua Tagovailoa hit fellow freshman DeVonta Smith for a 41-yard touchdown pass as Alabama rallied from a 13-point deficit in the third quarter for a 26-23 victory over stunned Georgia on Monday night in the College Football Playoff Championship Game. Rodrigo Blankenship kicked a 51-yard field to start overtime, but Tagovailoa, who had replaced starter Jalen Hurts, hit Smith in the end zone one play after taking a sack. The victory gave Saban six national championships -- one at LSU -- and tied him with Alabama legend Bear Bryant for the most ever. Alabama, down 20-7 at one point, appeared set to win in regulation, but kicker Andy Pappanastos was wide left from 26 yards out as time expired.
Tagovailoa's winner in overtime was his third touchdown pass of the game. He finished 14 of 24 for 166 yards. Georgia freshman quarterback Jake Fromm was 16 of 32 for 232 yards and a touchdown, throwing two interceptions to Tagovailoa's one. Alabama went for it on fourth-and-4 from the 7-yard line and tied the game with 3:49 remaining in regulation as Tagovailoa hit Calvin Ridley in the end zone to climax a 66-yard drive that benefited from a Georgia pass interference call. Tagovailoa replaced Hurts to start the second half and led Alabama to a touchdown on his second series, hitting Henry Ruggs III from 6 yards out. - The Sports Xchange