Thursday 10/25 - Latest News & Notes

Associated Press
Posted Oct 25, 2012

The latest news and notes for the college football world.

2012 News Rundown

October 25

October 25 - Buckeyes QB says he's fine after injury

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - When Ohio State quarterback Braxton Miller first was hurt in Saturday's game against Purdue, he didn't know what to think.

He'd never before been thrown down on his head and neck.

``I didn't know what it was,'' he said of his injury. ``I was just a little bit dizzy from the hit, whiplash. So they sent me to the hospital to see what it was.''

Tests determined that Miller, a sophomore who ranks among the top rushers in the nation, did not have a concussion or any other serious injury. He was cleared to return to practice immediately. The only lingering problem has been a slightly sore neck.

``No. 5 is doing good,'' coach Urban Meyer said after Ohio State's Wednesday practice. ``Full-speed practices really yesterday and today. Sore neck, but today's much better. He lifted (weights) and he's good to go.''

Miller was tackled from behind by Purdue defensive back Josh Johnson late in the third quarter of No. 9 Ohio State's home game. He was thrown hard to the turf, had difficulty getting up, and then had to be carted off the field.

``It was just one of those type hits you clench your eyes,'' Miller said.

The ninth-ranked Buckeyes trailed 20-14 when he left. Backup Kenny Guiton threw an interception and the Ohio State offense surrendered a safety, but Guiton led a last-minute, 61-yard drive that resulted in a touchdown pass and two-point conversion pass with 3 seconds left to force overtime.

The Buckeyes (8-0, 4-0 Big Ten) ended up pulling out an improbable 29-22 win.

In the hospital, Miller was trying to find out how his teammates were doing.

``I just kept asking the nurse. (She'd say), `I don't know. We're working on you,''' he said with a laugh. ``I just kept asking and they finally told me.''

Miller has been receiving daily rehab of massage, stretching, ice and anti-inflammatories for a sore neck. Other than that, he says he's 100 percent.

Meyer said Miller is not under any limitations for Saturday's big showdown against Penn State (5-2, 3-0). He is listed as the starter.

``I'd say I'm full go,'' Miller said.

October 24 - O'Leary: UCF eligible for postseason competition

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) - Central Florida will be eligible to compete for both the Conference USA championship and a bowl game this season with its appeal of a one-year football postseason ban not scheduled to be heard until next year.

Knights' coach George O'Leary said Tuesday the NCAA has set the hearing for late January.

The ban was the only penalty UCF challenged as part of sanctions levied in July for major recruiting violations in football and basketball. UCF also received a one-year postseason ban in basketball, $50,000 fine, five years' probation, reduction of basketball scholarships, and limits on football recruiting.

UCF (5-2, 3-0 C-USA) has accepted all penalties except the football postseason ban. Should UCF lose its appeal, it would serve its football ban in 2013 when it enters the Big East.

October 24 - Golson will start against eighth-ranked Oklahoma

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) - Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly says quarterback Everett Golson did well during a full workout and will start for the No. 5 Fighting Irish at No. 8 Oklahoma on Saturday.

Kelly said Tuesday that Golson is at 100 percent. Kelly benched Golson against Brigham Young last week as a precaution, saying he wanted to give him more time to recover from a concussion sustained in a helmet-to-helmet hit against Stanford.

Kelly says Golson is feeling confident heading into the game against the Sooners (5-1).

Golson has struggled at times for the Irish (7-0), but Kelly says he is making progress. Kelly says Golson had his best four plays against Stanford just before he was hurt.

October 23 - Wyoming coach Christensen suspended 1 week, fined

LARAMIE, Wyo. (AP) - Wyoming coach Dave Christensen has been suspended one week and fined $50,000 for his actions following an Oct. 13 loss to Air Force.

Athletic director Tom Burman said Monday that it's important to send the right message to the team about taking responsibility for your actions.

Last week, the Mountain West Conference reprimanded Christensen for his postgame conduct, saying it violated the league's sportsmanship rules. Christensen has apologized.

Christensen confronted Falcons coach Troy Calhoun on the field after Air Force's 28-27 victory.

He accused the Falcons of faking an injury to their starting quarterback in the fourth quarter so they could set up the next play without taking a time out. Air Force took the lead on the next play when backup quarterback Kale Pearson scored on a bootleg.

Assistant head coach Pete Kaligis will serve as interim head coach this week and will lead the Cowboys against No. 21 Boise State on Saturday.

Burman said in a written statement that the decision to suspend and fine Christensen was in the best interest of the university and the athletic department. ``The reputation of our University and of our athletics programs is of the upmost importance,'' he said.

He said another consideration was the well-being of the players. "I think it is important to send the right message to them in terms of taking responsibility for your actions,'' Burman said. ``This has been a difficult time for those young men. We hope that our fans will show their support for the team this coming weekend.''

University President Tom Buchanan said in a written statement that he supported Burman's decision to fine Christensen over his ``unacceptable and inappropriate behavior.''

``Such action does not reflect the values and the integrity of our athletics program or of the University of Wyoming,'' Buchanan said.

October 23 - Mizzou QB Franklin likely to miss Saturday

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) - Missouri quarterback James Franklin will likely miss his second consecutive game when the Tigers play Kentucky on Saturday.

Franklin was listed as ``doubtful'' on the team's updated depth chart released Monday. The junior sprained the medial collateral ligament in his left knee during the first quarter against Vanderbilt on Oct. 6.

Team spokesperson Chad Moller said Franklin would not be available for comment during Missouri's weekly media day.

Redshirt freshman Corbin Berkstresser is projected to start after completing only 12 of 29 passes for 126 yards and two interceptions against Alabama in Franklin's absence. Third-stringer Maty Mauk has sat out this season while redshirting.

Franklin also missed a game earlier this season with an inflamed bursa sac in his throwing shoulder suffered in a home loss to Georgia.

Missouri (3-4, 0-4 Southeastern Conference) was idle last week.

October 23 - Terps QB Hills has torn ACL, out for season

COLLEGE PARK, Md. (AP) - Maryland quarterback Perry Hills has a torn ACL in his left knee and is done for the season.

Terrapins coach Randy Edsall made the announcement Monday.

Hills' injury occurred in the second quarter of Saturday's game against North Carolina State. He threw an interception and was trying to make a tackle when he was flattened by an illegal block to the back.

Hills is the second Maryland quarterback this season to be sidelined by a torn ACL. C.J. Brown was lost in August and replaced by Hills, a true freshman.

In seven starts, Hills completed 97 of 169 passes for 1,336 yards and eight touchdowns. He threw seven interceptions.

Sophomore Devin Bruns and true freshman Caleb Rowe are the remaining quarterbacks on the Maryland depth chart.

October 22 - Spurrier expects Lattimore to start against Vols

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier expected star running back Marcus Lattimore back in the starting lineup this week against Tennessee.

Lattimore missed several practices last week with a hip bruise and got only three carries for 13 yards in a 44-11 loss to No. 3 Florida this past Saturday.

Spurrier said Sunday it didn't make sense to send Lattimore back into the game and risk aggravating the injury once the Gators opened a 21-3 lead midway through the second quarter.

The Gamecocks (6-2, 4-2 Southeastern Conference) rushed for just 36 yards. Kenny Miles started for Lattimore at The Swamp and finished with 15 yards. Freshman Mike Davis was the team leader with 20 yards on the ground.

South Carolina fell eight spots in the rankings to No. 17.

October 22 - Oklahoma State QB J.W. Walsh out for season

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - Oklahoma State starting quarterback J.W. Walsh will miss the rest of the season after hurting his knee in a 31-10 victory over Iowa State on Saturday, the latest blow in an injury-marred season.

Coach Mike Gundy said Sunday night that he believes Walsh was hurt within the first 10 or 20 plays of the game but never complained or came out of the game with the injury that will keep him out for the rest of the season.

Walsh ended up throwing for a career-high 415 yards and running for 46 more in the win. He threw for one touchdown and ran for another, in the fourth quarter. Gundy said the injury was not career-threatening.

``He finished the game. He ran, made throws. I'm speaking a little bit out of turn because it wasn't an injury that progressively got worse. It just happened and then he was able to play with the pain,'' Gundy said.

``I can only say that it was a pretty amazing performance. I would hate to use that term for a guy or a player on my team that's only a freshman, but for him to finish the game the way he did and run the football and never say a word was really a terrific performance.''

Walsh inherited the starter's job after freshman Wes Lunt was hurt in the third game of the season. The two had competed with Clint Chelf for the opening during the spring, after Brandon Weeden was taken in the first round of the NFL draft, with Lunt winning the job.

Gundy said he thinks Lunt will be able to start Saturday against TCU, but the Cowboys ``haven't figured that out yet.''

Oklahoma State also lost tight end Justin Horton to a season-ending injury. Receivers Tracy Moore and Isaiah Anderson missed last week's game against Iowa State and backup running back Jeremy Smith was limited. All had injuries that were not disclosed under the Cowboys' new, more restrictive policy.

``I just hate it for them because coaches, this is our life and we understand and we deal with these situations. But it just tears you up inside when you have to see a young man working their tail off get put in those situations,'' Gundy said.

``As a team, we're fine. We rally, other guys play and we keep rolling. But it's just a heartbreaker for a coach when you see a young man that's out for the year.''

October 22 - Idaho fires Akey with 1-7 record

MOSCOW, Idaho (AP) - Idaho fired football coach Robb Akey with the team 1-7 and coming off a blowout loss.

The school announced the move Sunday and promoted offensive coordinator Jason Gesser to interim coach. Gesser, a former Washington State quarterback, has been on the Idaho staff for two seasons.

Akey was 20-50 at Idaho since taking over in 2007. He had one winning season with the Vandals, going 8-5 in 2009 and beating Bowling Green 43-42 in the Humanitarian Bowl.

Idaho lost 70-28 to Louisiana Tech and allowed 839 yards Saturday.

``The president (Duane Nellis) and I believe it is important to make this move now so we can immediately begin the process of hiring a new coach for the 2013 season,'' athletic director Rob Spear said. ``We appreciate Coach Akey's enthusiasm and dedication to the University of Idaho, but this is the right move at this time.''Akey's contract runs through the 2014 season.

Idaho is a member of the Western Athletic Conference, which won't have enough members to compete in football beyond this season. The school already has plans to play as an independent starting next season.