Take a look at the latest news and notes in NCAA Football:
Urban Meyer Decision Finally Comes Down
The Urban Meyer decision finally came down this week and the Ohio State University coach has been suspended for the first three games of the season. Meyer has been on administrative leave after wide receivers coach Zach Smith had been fired for domestic abuse. In regards to Meyer, the investigation was based around if he had any knowledge and what actions were taken in regards to the domestic abuse. Since the ruling has come down, many have accused the university of putting the football program ahead of human decency. Meyer also is forfeiting six weeks of pay as a result of the punishment. Athletic director Gene Smith was also punished, although his suspension lasts for just over two weeks.
It will be interesting to see how his tainted reputation affects the university moving forward. For instance, 4-star linebacker Kane Patterson has already de-committed from Ohio State. The linebacker, who had been pursued from other powerhouses like Alabama, Clemson and Texas A&M, seemingly wants to reevaluate his decision after the uncertainty that has surrounded Meyers and the program. It will be interesting to see if this affects any of the other commits or future recruiting efforts.
Jeff George Jr. Transferring From Michigan
Jeff George Jr., the son of former NFL quarterback Jeff George, is struggling to find a place he fits in. After transferring out of Illinois following last season, George Jr. will be transferring out of Michigan now as well. Early indications are that he might be transferring to Pittsburgh. In parts of 5 games last season for Illinois, Jeff George Jr. went for 470 yards and 4 touchdowns, but he also threw 5 interceptions.
Several Decisions Made In Quarterback Competitions
With the season just around the corner, college football teams around the country are having to make the tough roster decisions. One of the most important decisions always stems around the quarterback position, and some of those decisions are starting to trickle through. After enjoying a few seasons of first-round pick, Baker Mayfield, Oklahoma has decided on their quarterback. They are going with Kyler Murray to start the season. As a former 5-star recruit, Murray had some limited exposure last season. He had 359 yards on 18 completions. He also had 3 touchdowns over the course of limited playing time in seven games.
The Horned Frogs have also decided on their quarterback.. Sophomore Shawn Robinson will be the starting quarterback this season. As a backup last year, Robinson went 13 for 27 with a 184 yard and 3 touchdowns. He also had 159 yards on the ground. While Robinson is the starter, it wouldn’t be surprising if Penn transfer Michael Collins sees some time throughout the season, especially if Robinson falters at any point.
One quarterback competition that might spill into the regular season is the one at Alabama. Both Tua Tagovailoa and Jalen Hurts have been battling in the offseason for the starting nod. Hurts led Alabama throughout the season last year; however, after struggling in the first half, Tagovailoa is the one that took them down the stretch in the National Championship game. With both having strong preseasons, it would not be surprising to see them both have opportunities in the first game against Louisville.
It does not sound like UCLA coach Chip Kelly is in any hurry to decide on his quarterback. He has indicated that he is going to slow play it and they coaching staff will sit down in the days to follow to discuss a course of action. Right now the likeliest contenders for the job include redshirt sophomore Devon Modster, Michigan graduate transfer Wilton Speight and freshman Dorian Thompson-Robinson.
Indiana Suspends Leading Rusher From Last Season
While details remain murky on why, the Indiana Hoosiers have suspended their leading rusher from last season. Sophomore Morgan Ellison, who went for 704 yards and six touchdowns last season, will at the bare minimum likely miss their first game against FIU. It is unclear who will replace Ellison, but Cole Gest, who had 428 yards rushing last year, may be the most likely.
Maryland Continues To Be In Hot Water
Maryland has already been dealing with an investigation into the handling of Jordan McNair, the offensive lineman who died in June as a result of heatstroke during an offseason team workout. Now, there is another investigation as to whether the school used university funds to defend football players in a sexual misconduct case. Conflicting reports have come out in regards to the used funds. The university says that it happened under former AD Kevin Anderson, and that they didn’t know about it until the invoice was received at the president’s office. The attorney who represented the players has a different version, though. He indicates that he was hired by head coach D.J. Durkin and didn’t have much contact with the athletic director. Regardless, it is an even worse look for a program that has already been dealing with turmoil following the death of their offensive lineman.