Tennessee Vols officially bring Jay Graham back home to Rocky Top as RBs coach

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One former Tennessee Vols football player is the latest to illustrate that, yes, you can indeed go home again.

Monday, former Oklahoma running back DeMarco Murray returned to Norman as OU’s running backs coach.  Four days later, former Tennessee running back Jay Graham officially returned to Knoxville as Jeremy Pruitt‘s new running backs coach.

Graham played for UT from 1993-96.  During his time on Rocky Top, Graham ran for 2,609 yards and 25 touchdowns.

This will also mark Graham’s third coaching stint at his alma mater.  In 2012, he was the SEC school’s running backs coach.  His first coaching job was also at UT, as a graduate assistant in 2005.

“I’m excited to welcome Jay Graham back to Tennessee,” the Tennessee Vols football head coach said in a statement. “He is one of the best assistant coaches in the country, and his track record for developing running backs speaks for itself, as you can see several of the young men he has coached playing on Sundays. He’s the total package as a coach with his experience playing in the NFL and his years coaching in the SEC and ACC. He has [a] tremendous work ethic and an impressive ability to connect with young people. I was impressed by Jay from the start of our time working together and winning a national championship in 2013. He’s one of the best running backs ever to play at Tennessee, which I saw firsthand in the mid-90s. I’m thrilled to be working alongside him again and bringing him back to Rocky Top.”

Graham served as the running backs coach at Texas A&M the past two seasons.  He’s also coached the position he played at this level during FBS stops at Florida State (2013-17) and South Carolina (2009-11).

Prior to embarking on a career in coaching, Graham spent nine seasons in the NFL.

WVU RB Donaldson in concussion protocol, out for Baylor game

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MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (AP) West Virginia running back CJ Donaldson is in concussion protocol and will miss next week’s home game with Baylor after he was injured in a loss to Texas, coach Neal Brown said Tuesday.

Donaldson remained on the ground after he was tackled on a short gain in the third quarter of Saturday’s 38-20 loss to the Longhorns. His helmet and shoulder pads were removed and he was carted off the field on a stretcher. After the game he was cleared to travel home with the team.

“He’s recovering,” Brown said. “There is a strict return-to-play (policy) that we have to follow here and I’m zero involved in it. All I do is ask the question. They don’t even start the return-to-play until they’re symptom free.”

Donaldson, a 240-pound freshman, leads the Mountaineers with 389 rushing yards and six touchdowns, with an average of 6.9 yards per carry.

West Virginia (2-3, 0-2 Big 12 Conference) is idle this week and hosts Baylor (3-2, 1-1) next Thursday, Oct. 13.

Taulia Tagovailoa says he visited brother, Tua, over weekend

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COLLEGE PARK, Md. – Maryland quarterback Taulia Tagovailoa was able to visit his brother, Tua, last weekend after the Terrapins’ game against Michigan State, he said Tuesday in his first comments to reporters since Tua left the Miami Dolphins’ game against Cincinnati last Thursday with a frightening head injury.

Taulia played in Maryland’s win over Michigan State on Saturday but was not made available to the media afterward. He said Tuesday he was able to go to Florida and spend some time with his brother, who suffered a concussion four days after taking a hit in another game but was cleared to return.

“He’s doing good, everything’s fine,” he said. “My biggest thing was just seeing him and spending as much time as I can with him. I came back Sunday night.”

Tagovailoa said he appreciates the support for his brother.

“My brother’s my heart. He’s someone I look up to, someone I talk to every day,” he said. “It was just a hard scene for me to see that.”

Tagovailoa said he was in constant contact with his mother about his brother’s situation, and he was finally able to talk to Tua on Friday night.

“I really just wanted to go there and just spend time with my family, hug them and stuff like that,” Taulia Tagovailoa said. “But he told me he’s a big fan of us, and he’d rather watch me play on Saturday. … After that phone call, I was happy and getting back to my normal routine.”

Tagovailoa indicated that his brother’s injury didn’t make him too nervous about his own health when he took the field again.

“I guess when that happens to someone like my brother, or when anything happens to one of my family members, I don’t really think of how it will be able to affect me,” he said. “I just think of: `Is he OK? How’s he doing?”‘

Although it was a short visit to Florida, he said he and Tua made the most of their chance to be together.

“I just wanted to make sure he’s healthy and stuff, which he is,” Taulia Tagovailoa said.