Williams, Stroud, Hooker finalists for Maxwell as top player

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
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Quarterbacks Caleb Williams of Southern California, C.J. Stroud of Ohio State and Hendon Hooker of Tennessee have been named finalists for the Maxwell Award as the player of the year in college football.

The Maxwell finalists were announced Tuesday along with finalists for most of the other awards that will be presented Dec. 8 on ESPN.

Williams is throwing for more than 300 yards per game and has 34 TD passes against just three interceptions. Stroud has thrown for a nation-leading 37 touchdowns and has the highest passer rating. Hooker was leader of the nation’s No. 1 offense before an anterior cruciate ligament tear in his left knee ended his season Nov. 19.

Other award finalists:

Chuck Bednarik Award (defensive player of the year): Will Anderson Jr., Alabama; Ivan Pace Jr., Cincinnati; Tuli Tuipulotu, USC.

Biletnikoff Award (outstanding receiver): Marvin Harrison, Jr., Ohio State; Xavier Hutchinson, Iowa State; Jalin Hyatt, Tennessee.

Lou Groza Award (outstanding kicker): Christopher Dunn, North Carolina State; Joshua Karty, Stanford; Jake Moody, Michigan.

Ray Guy Award (outstanding punter): Mason Fletcher, Cincinnati; Bryce Baringer, Michigan State; Adam Korsak, Rutgers.

Davey O’Brien Award (outstanding quarterback): Max Duggan, TCU; C.J. Stroud, Ohio State; Caleb Williams, USC.

Outland Trophy (outstanding interior lineman): Calijah Kancey, Pittsburgh; Olusegun Oluwatimi, Michigan; Peter Skoronski, Northwestern.

Jim Thorpe Award (outstanding defensive back): Tre’Vius Hodges-Tomlinson, TCU; Clark Phillips III, Utah; Devon Witherspoon, Illinois.

Doak Walker Award (outstanding running back): Chase Brown, Illinois; Blake Corum, Michigan; Bijan Robinson, Texas.

Burlsworth Trophy (outstanding player who began his career as a walk-on): Aidan O'Connell, Purdue; Carlton Martial, Troy; Stetson Bennett, Georgia.

John Mackey Award (outstanding tight end): Brock Bowers, Georgia; Michael Mayer, Notre Dame; Sam LaPorta, Iowa.

Clemson gives raises, contract extensions to staff

Ken Ruinard/USA TODAY NETWORK
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CLEMSON, S.C. — Clemson’s board of trustees approved raises for special teams coordinator and cornerbacks coach Mike Reed and defensive tackles coach Nick Eason.

Reed and Eason also received one-year extensions keeping them tied to the Tigers through Jan. 31, 2026.

Reed, who’s been with the Tigers since 2013, had his yearly salary increased $50,000 to $800,000. Eason, the former Clemson standout defensive lineman, joined the staff this past season. He also had his compensation upped by $50,000 to $800,000.

Seven other assistants were given one-year extensions by the trustees’ compensation committee, but without a raise in salary.

Co-defensive coordinators Wes Goodwin and Mickey Conn had their contracts extended through Jan. 31, 2026.

Defensive ends coach Lemanski Hall, tight ends coach Kyle Richardson, offensive line coach Thomas Austin, running backs coach C.J. Spiller and wide receivers coach Tyler Grisham all got one-year extensions through Jan. 31, 2025.

New offensive coordinator Garrett Riley last month received a three-year contract at $1.75 million per season.

Clemson will pay its 10 on-field assistants $7.475 million this season, an increase of $925,000 from the total for 2022.

The Tigers went 11-3 last season, winning the Atlantic Coast Conference title for the seventh time in the past eight seasons.

South Carolina’s Beamer suspends three freshmen from program

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Corey Perrine/USA TODAY NETWORK
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COLUMBIA, S.C. — South Carolina coach Shane Beamer said freshmen Monteque Rhames II, Anthony Rose and Cameron Upshaw were suspended from the football program.

There was no reason given for the suspensions in the school’s statement Friday. Online records showed Rhames, 18, was booked last night and was being held at the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center on charges of carrying weapons on school property and obstructing justice.

“Our student-athletes know what is expected of them,” Beamer said. “They know that both the university and the football program will hold them accountable for their actions and decisions.”

None of the three have played for the Gamecocks.

Rose is a 6-foot-1, 190-pound defensive back from Miami who enrolled in January 2022 and redshirted this season. Rhames and Upshaw were part of South Carolina’s latest recruiting class and enrolled last month.

Rhames is a 6-5, 235-pound defensive lineman from Sumter and Upshaw is a 6-2, 193-pound safety from Perry, Florida.