Ben Queen-USA TODAY Sports

West Virginia suspends 11 for opener; bans not tied to virus

Leave a comment

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — West Virginia suspended 11 players for its season opener for undisclosed violations of team rules.

Coach Neal Brown announced the suspensions Saturday before the Mountaineers played at home against Eastern Kentucky.

The school would not specify what the players did, except to say this is not related to the coronavirus.

Among them were slot wide receivers T.J. Simmons and Isaiah Esdale, tight ends T.J. Banks and Mike O'Laughlin, and two starting offensive linemen, center Chase Behrndt and left tackle Junior Uzebu.

Also suspended were backup offensive linemen Zach Davis and Tairiq Stewart, backup wide receiver Zack Dobson and long snapper JP Hadley.

Freshman cornerback Vincent Okloli was the lone suspended player on defense.

Big 12 moves ahead with fall sports beginning in September

Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
1 Comment

Baylor coach Dave Aranda could see a weight being lifted off the shoulders of his players during a meeting Tuesday night, when word began to filter out that the Big 12 Conference would attempt to play football this fall.

“You could just see the joy,” Aranda said. “Everyone was smiling. Guys were cracking jokes, were excited.”

Months of uncertainty had finally given the Bears and their conference rivals the slightest bit of clarity. If all goes according to plan, they will take the field for a non-conference game next month, then begin a round-robin league schedule on Sept. 26 with the intention of crowning a Big 12 champion on Dec. 12 near Dallas.

That doesn’t mean they will be competing for a national title, though. The Atlantic Coast and Southeastern conferences have so far joined the Big 12 in playing this fall, but the Big Ten, Pac-12 and many smaller conferences are trying for the spring.

So will there be two national champions, like there sometimes were when poll voters declared who was best? Will an autumn champion play a spring champion? Will this year, like so many things around the world, simply be one to forget?

Those are among the questions that still must be answered.

“We have a College Football Playoff call next week and we’ll obviously talk about this. It’s going to be a while into the season before all that is resolved,” Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby said Wednesday. “There probably isn’t any obvious reason why it couldn’t work to continue to try to play a postseason, but you’re looking at a December-January time frame right in the heart of the virus season. I just think it’s too early. We’re going to have to be patient.”

Patience is something the league has been preaching since March, when the coronavirus pandemic began shutting down sports in the U.S. as it turned the world upside down.

The Big 12’s board of directors have been speaking on an almost-daily basis with infectious disease experts, scientists and physicians while getting the input of coaches, administrators and athletes. It came up with a plan it believes will work.

Fall sports will begin after Sept. 1 with football playing a schedule in which each team can play one non-conference game before league play begins a few weeks later. The schools will all play each other to give them 10 total games.

All athletes will be subject to three tests per week – likely Sunday, Wednesday and Friday – in “high contact” sports such as football, volleyball and soccer. Should an athlete test positive, they would be subject to echocardiograms, a cardiac MRI, blood tests and other examinations before they are cleared to return.

Non-conference opponents also must adhere to Big 12 standards the week before competition.

“We have been unwavering in putting our focus squarely on the well-being of our student-athletes and staff members,” Oklahoma athletic director Joe Castiglione said. “There has been great effort expended in areas like testing and sanitizing, which are part of a comprehensive plan.”

TCU Chancellor Victor Boschini, who chairs the board of directors, acknowledged things could change at any time. The Big Ten, for example, had released a conference-only schedule before scrapping the fall season just days later.

“If at any point our scientists and doctors conclude that our institutions cannot provide a safe and appropriate environment for our participants, we will change course,” Boschini said.

The Big 12 wanted to wait until August to reach a decision on fall sports to see what would happen as teams began their preseason camps. And while there were numerous outbreaks when athletes returned to campus in June for workouts, most of the league’s 10 schools have not reported any positive tests for several weeks.

“Frankly, we found that what we thought was golden 60 days ago is garbage today. It’s an ever-evolving environment,” Bowlsby said, “and we will find ourselves with bump spots during the fall. There isn’t any doubt about that. But I think we are very well-prepared to deal with those things.”

That doesn’t mean there aren’t still more questions that answers.

Does a school that experiences an outbreak during the week forfeit their game? What are the chances that coaches try to game the system for a competitive edge? Is there a number of positive tests league-wide that ultimately would force the Big 12 to call off the season? Do players lose a season of eligibility if only five or six games are played?

Bowlsby acknowledged most of those questions do not have answers, at least at this point. But he hopes the NCAA will provide some clarification soon on such issues as eligibility and financial aid.

He also agreed that it would be difficult for the Big 12 to continue if the ACC and SEC ultimately move to the spring.

“Any time anybody at any level has decided they weren’t going to play or they were going to do something different, it affects us,” Bowlsby said. “I don’t know we would want to be the only college football conference playing. To the questions about the postseason – that would pretty much eliminate the postseason.”

The decision to move forward this fall was met with overwhelming approval from coaches and athletes, many of whom simply wanted clarity as they pressed on with daily workouts in anticipation of a season.

“They want to compete,” Kansas State coach Chris Klieman said. “Especially seniors, they only have so many opportunities to compete. It’s pretty special when you go into your senior years. Those are the guys I’m really hopeful have a chance.”

Whether they compete in front of fans is a question that the Big 12 is leaving to local jurisdictions. Each state has put its own limits on crowd sizes, some of them barring any large gatherings altogether, and schools will be forced to adjust their ticketing plans to adhere to the recommendations of public health officials.

Regardless, and at least for now, those players will be on the field in some fashion next month.

“The last two days in particular, the anxiety and stress, for coaches and players, was something we talked quite a bit about,” said Aranda, the first-year Baylor coach. “I’ve got a lot of faith in our team, and a lot of faith in our players, in terms of doing the right thing. Nowhere at any point in the past is taking care of each other as important as it is right now.”

U.S. Army All-American Bowl alumni by NFL team

Getty Images
Leave a comment

For 18 years, the U.S. Army All-American Bowl has put the best high school football players in the country against each other. While the majority of players went on to play at the collegiate level, not all advanced to achieve their dream of playing in the NFL. Check out the list of NFL players who competed in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl here:

Don’t forget to watch the 2018 U.S. Army All-American Bowl on NBC and the NBC Sports app January 6th at 1:00 P.M. ET. 

U.S. Army All-American Bowl  |  NFL Alumni
AFC EAST
Buffalo Bills
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Lorenzo Alexander LB 2001 Cal
DeAndre Coleman DT 2009 Cal
Seantrel Henderson T 2010 Miami
LeSean McCoy RB 2006 Pitt
Nick O'Leary TE 2011 Florida State
Tyrod Taylor QB 2007 Virginia Tech
Logan Thomas QB 2009 Virginia Tech
Deonte Thompson WR 2007 Florida
Miami Dolphins
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
A.J. Derby TE 2010 Arkansas
Anthony Fasano TE 2002 Notre Dame
Mike Hull LB 2010 Penn State
T.J. McDonald S 2009 USC
Ndamukong Suh DT 2005 Nebraska
MarQueis Gray TE 2008 Minnesota
Sam Young T 2006 Notre Dame
New England Patriots
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Martellus Bennett TE 2005 Texas A&M
Alan Branch DT 2004 Michigan
Marquis Flowers LB 2010 Arizona
Lawrence Guy DE 2008 Arizona State
Cassius Marsh DE 2010 UCLA
New York Jets
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Jermaine Kearse WR 2008 Washington
Austin Seferian-Jenkins TE 2011 Washington
AFC NORTH
Baltimore Ravens
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Andrew Donnal OT 2010 Iowa
Tony Jefferson S 2010 Oklahoma
Ryan Mallett QB 2007 Arkansas
C.J. Mosley LB 2010 Alabama
Justin Tucker K 2008 Texas
Cincinnati Bengals
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Tyler Boyd WR 2013 Pittsburgh
Vontaze Burfict LB 2009 Arizona State
Trey Hopkins G 2010 Texas
Dre Kirkpatrick CB 2009 Alabama
AJ McCarron QB 2009 Alabama
Cedric Ogbuehi T 2010 Texas A&M
Andre Smith T 2006 Alabama
Cleveland Browns
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Joe Thomas T 2003 Wisconsin
Kasen Williams WR 2011 Washington
Pittsburgh Steelers
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Martavis Bryant WR 2010 Clemson
Robert Golden S 2008 Arizona
Stephon Tuitt DE 2011 Notre Dame
AFC SOUTH
Houston Texans
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Brian Cushing LB 2005 USC
C.J. Fiedorowicz TE 2010 Iowa
Marcus Gilchrist CB 2007 Clemson
Corey Moore S 2011 Georgia
Tom Savage QB 2009 Rutgers -> Pitt
DeAndrew White WR 2010 Alabama
Indianapolis Colts
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Jonathan Bostic LB 2008 Florida
Andrew Luck QB 2008 Stanford
Barkevious Mingo DE/LB 2009 LSU
John Simon LB 2008 Ohio State
Al Woods DE 2006 LSU
Jacksonville Jaguars
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Arrelious Benn WR 2007 Illinois
Michael Bennett DT 2011 Ohio State
Chad Henne QB 2004 Michigan
Brandon Linder G 2009 Miami
Lerentee McCray LB 2008 Florida
Jalen Ramsey CB 2013 Florida State
T.J. Yeldon RB 2012 Alabama
Tennessee Titans
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Derrick Henry RB 2013 Alabama
DeMarco Murray RB 2006 Oklahoma
Quinton Spain OG 2010 West Virginia
AFC WEST
Denver Broncos
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Jake Butt TE 2013 Michigan
Jamaal Charles RB 2005 Texas
Kansas City Chiefs
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
George Atkinson III RB 2011 Notre Dame
Allen Bailey DE 2007 Miami
Eric Berry S 2007 Tennessee
Derrick Johnson LB 2001 Texas
De’Anthony Thomas RB 2011 Oregon
Spencer Ware RB 2010 LSU
Oakland Raiders
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Elijah Hood RB 2014 North Carolina
Tevin Mitchel S 2011 Arkansas
Los Angeles Chargers
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Keenan Allen WR 2010 Cal
Joe Barksdale T 2007 LSU
NFC EAST
Dallas Cowboys
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Brice Butler WR 2008 USC -> SDSU
Tyron Smith T 2008 USC
New York Giants
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Eli Apple CB 2013 Ohio State
Odell Beckham Jr. WR 2011 LSU
D.J. Fluker T 2009 Alabama
Devon Kennard LB 2009 USC
Philadelphia Eagles
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Nigel Bradham LB 2008 Florida State
Shelton Gibson WR 2013 West Virginia
Brandon Graham DE 2006 Michigan
Chris Long DE 2004 Virginia
Timmy Jernigan DT 2011 Florida State
Jaylen Watkins CB 2010 Florida
Stefan Wisniewski C/G 2007 Penn State
Washington Redskins
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Jonathan Allen DE 2013 Alabama
Vernon Davis TE 2003 Maryland
Kendall Fuller CB 2013  Virginia Tech
Arie Kouandjio OG 2010 Alabama
Morgan Moses T 2009 Virginia
Niles Paul WR 2007 Nebraska
Terrelle Pryor WR 2008 Ohio State
NFC NORTH
Chicago Bears
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Kyle Long T 2008 Oregon
Mark Sanchez QB 2005 USC
Detroit Lions
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Haloti Ngata DT 2002 Oregon
Greg Robinson T 2011 Auburn
Green Bay Packers
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Ahmad Brooks LB 2002 Virginia
Nick Perry LB 2008 USC
Minnesota Vikings
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Mackensie Alexander CB 2013 Clemson
Anthony Barr LB 2010 UCLA
Teddy Bridgewater QB 2011 Louisville
Stefon Diggs WR 2012 Maryland
Michael Floyd WR 2008 Notre Dame
Sharrif Floyd DT 2010 Florida
Kai Forbath K 2006 UCLA
Everson Griffen DE 2007 USC
Kyle Rudolph TE 2008 Notre Dame
NFC SOUTH
Atlanta Falcons
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Matt Bosher P 2006 Miami
Jake Matthews T 2010 Texas A&M
Carolina Panthers
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Derek Anderson QB 2001 Oregon State
Wes Horton DE 2008 USC
Matt Kalil T 2008 USC
Andrew Norwell OL 2010 Ohio State
Greg Olsen TE 2003 Miami
Chris Scott T 2005 Tennessee
Jonathan Stewart RB 2005 Oregon
Shaq Thompson LB 2012 Washington
New Orleans Saints
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Ted Ginn Jr. WR 2004 Ohio State
Al-Quadin Muhammad DE 2013 Miami
Alex Okafor DE 2009 Texas
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
DeSean Jackson WR 2005 Cal
Gerald McCoy DT 2006 Oklahoma
Donovan Smith OT 2011 Penn State
NFC WEST
Arizona Cardinals
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Alex Boone G/T 2005 Ohio State
Blaine Gabbert QB 2008 Missouri
D.J. Humphries OT 2012 Florida
Adrian Peterson RB 2004 Oklahoma
Patrick Peterson CB 2008 LSU
San Francisco 49ers
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Arik Armstead DE 2012 Oregon
Eli Harold DE 2012 Virginia
Aaron Lynch DE 2011 Notre Dame -> USF
Bradley Pinion P 2012 Clemson
Eric Reid S 2010 LSU
Seattle Seahawks
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Mike Davis RB 2012 South Carolina
Garrison Smith DT 2010 Georgia
Blair Walsh K 2008 Georgia
Sheldon Richardson DE 2009 Missouri
Los Angeles Rams
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Malcolm Brown RB 2011 Texas
Robert Quinn DE 2008 North Carolina
John Sullivan C 2003 Notre Dame
Sammy Watkins WR 2011 Clemson
Andrew Whitworth T 2001 LSU
Robert Woods WR 2010 USC
Free Agents
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Mike Adams T 2008 Ohio State
Justin Anderson G 2006 Georgia
Nate Askew LB 2010 Texas A&M
David Ausberry WR 2006 USC
Marvin Austin DT 2007 North Carolina
Jason Avant WR 2002 Michigan
Edwin Baker RB 2009 Michigan State
Calvin Barnett DL 2010 OK State
Connor Barth K 2004 North Carolina
Will Blackmon DB 2002 Boston College
Robert Blanton CB 2008 Notre Dame
Josh Boyd DL 2009 Mississippi State
Tajh Boyd QB 2009 Clemson
Allen Bradford LB 2006 USC
Michael Brewster C/G 2008 Ohio State
Ron Brooks CB 2008 LSU
Arthur Brown LB 2008 Kansas State
Curtis Brown CB 2007 Texas
Stevie Brown S 2006 Michigan
Tarell Brown CB 2003 Texas
Christian Bryant S 2010 Ohio State
Dan Buckner WR 2009 Arizona
Chris Burnette G 2009 Georgia
Reggie Bush RB 2003 USC
Nate Byham TE 2006 Pitt
Andre Caldwell WR 2003 Florida
Alex Carter CB 2012 Stanford
Michael Carter DB 2009 Minnesota
Tony Carter CB 2004 Florida State
Orson Charles TE/H 2009 Georgia
John Chiles WR 2007 Texas
Gerald Christian TE 2010 Florida -> Louisville
Jimmy Clausen QB 2007 Notre Dame
Quinton Coples DE 2008 North Carolina
Perrish Cox CB 2006 OK State
Rob Crisp OT 2010 N.C. State
Antonio Cromartie CB 2003 Florida State
Dorin Dickerson TE 2006 Pitt
Ahmad Dixon S 2010 Baylor
Ray Drew DE 2011 Georgia
Matt Elam S 2010 Florida
Shaquelle Evans WR 2009 UCLA
George Farmer WR/DB 2011 USC
Chris Faulk T 2009 LSU
V.J. Fehoko LB 2010 Utah -> Texas Tech
Josh Freeman QB 2006 Kansas State
Darius Fleming LB 2008 Notre Dame
Jeremy Gallon WR 2009 Michigan
Clifton Geathers DE 2006 South Carolina
David Gettis WR 2005 Baylor
Tavares Gooden LB 2003 Miami
Malliciah Goodman DE 2009 Clemson
Jonas Gray RB 2008 Notre Dame
Justin Green DB 2009 Illinois
Dorial Green-Beckham WR 2012 Missouri
Harland Gunn G 2007 Miami
Marcus Hall G 2009 Ohio State
Leon Hall CB 2003 Michigan
Dee Hart RB 2011 Alabama -> Colorado State
Ricky Havili-Heimuli DT 2010 Oregon
Nick Hayden DT 2004 Wisconsin
Vidal Hazelton WR 2006 Cincinnati
Kenny Hilliard RB 2011 LSU
Gerod Hollimon S 2011 Louisville
Michael Huey G 2007 Texas
Robert Hughes RB 2007 Notre Dame
Tim Jamison DE 2004 Michigan
Nico Johnson LB 2009 Alabama
Barrett Jones G 2008 Alabama
Jarvis Jones OLB 2009 Georgia
Nick Kasa TE 2009 Colorado
Greg Little WR 2007 North Carolina
Marcus Lucas WR 2010 Missouri
Colt Lyerla TE 2011 Oregon
Gabe Lynn S 2009 Oklahoma
Nick Mangold C 2002 Ohio State
Dior Mathis CB 2010 Oregon
Rey Maualuga LB 2005 USC
Taylor Mays S 2006 USC
Ellis McCarthy DT 2012 UCLA
Jacques McClendon G 2006 Tennessee
Brandon McGee CB 2008 Miami
Christine Michael RB 2009 Texas A&M
Ryan Miller G 2007 Colorado
Roy Miller DT 2005 Texas
Tony Moeaki TE 2005 Iowa
Rahim Moore S 2008 UCLA
Zeke Motta S 2009 Notre Dame
Jonas Mouton LB 2006 Michigan
Ryan Mundy S 2003 Michigan -> WVU
Aaron Murray QB 2009 Georgia
David Nelson WR 2005 Florida
Lucas Nix G 2008 Pitt
Xavier Nixon T 2009 Florida
Marquez North WR 2013 Tennesse
Owamagbe Odighizuwa DE 2010 UCLA
Jared Odrick DE 2006 Penn State
Michael Oher T 2005 Ole Miss
Frank Okam DT 2004 Texas
Jeoffrey Pagan DE 2011 Alabama
Matt Patchan OL 2008 Florida -> Boston College
Tana Patrick LB 2010 Alabama
Michael Philipp T 2009 Oregon State
Shakim Phillips WR 2010 Boston College -> UConn
DeVier Posey WR 2008 Ohio State
Jerrell Powe DT 2005 Ole Miss
Ronald Powell LB 2010 Florida
Brian Price DT 2007 UCLA
Kelcy Quarles DL 2010 South Carolina
Chris Rainey RB 2007 Florida
Rueben Randle WR 2009 LSU
Silas Redd RB 2010 Penn State -> USC
Trovon Reed DB 2010 Auburn
Matt Reynolds T 2005 Brigham Young
Gerell Robinson WR/TE 2008 Arizona State
Etienne Sabino LB 2008 Ohio State
James Sample CB 2011 Washington -> Louisville
Ricky Sapp DE/LB 2006 Clemson
Stephen Schilling G 2006 Michigan
Jonathan Scott T 2001 Texas
Lache Seastrunk RB 2010 Oregon -> Baylor
Jaxon Shipley WR 2011 Texas
Josh Shirley LB 2010 UNLV
Matt Simms QB 2007 Tennessee
Shayne Skov LB 2009 Stanford
Jacques Smith DE/LB 2010 Tennessee
Reggie Smith DB 2005 Oklahoma
David Snow C/G 2008 Texas
Brandon Spikes LB 2006 Florida
C.J. Spiller RB 2006 Clemson
Tony Steward LB 2011 Clemson
Jake Stoneburner TE 2008 Ohio State
Maurice Stovall WR 2002 Notre Dame
Damian Swann CB 2011 Georgia
Tim Tebow QB 2006 Florida
Justin Trattou DE 2007 Florida
DeAngelo Tyson DL 2008 Georgia
Aundrey Walker OT 2011 USC
Darrin Walls CB 2006 Notre Dame
R.J. Washington DL 2008 Oklahoma
Chris Watt G 2009 Notre Dame
J’Marcus Webb T 2006 Texas -> W Texas A&M
Beanie Wells RB 2006 Ohio State
Chris Whaley DT 2009 Texas
Donte Whitner S 2003 Ohio State
Aaron Williams CB 2008 Texas
Brennan Williams T 2008 North Carolina
Ryan Williams RB 2008 Virginia Tech
Trey Williams RB 2012 Texas A&M
Martez Wilson DE/LB 2007 Illinois
Ronnie Wingo RB 2009 Arkansas
Demetrius Wright S 2010 USC
Major Wright S 2007 Florida
Retired
NAME POS CLASS OF COLLEGE
Armando Allen RB 2007 Notre Dame
Sam Baker T 2003 USC
Jon Baldwin WR 2008 Pitt
Travis Beckum TE 2005 Wisconsin
Justin Blalock G 2002 Texas
Levi Brown T 2002 Penn State
Jeff Byers C 2004 USC
John Carlson TE 2003 Notre Dame
Shaun Cody DL 2001 USC
Dan Connor LB 2004 Penn State
A.J. Davis CB 2002 N.C. State
Anthony Davis T 2007 Rutgers
Fred Davis TE 2004 USC
Phillip Dillard LB 2005 Nebraska
Early Doucet WR 2004 LSU
Mike Golic Jr. C 2008 Notre Dame
Mike Goodson RB 2006 Texas A&M
Cedric Griffin CB 2001 Texas
Sergio Kindle LB 2006 Texas
Justin King CB 2005 Penn State
Jamarkus McFarland DE 2009 Oklahoma
Joe McKnight RB 2007 USC
Rashard Mendenhall RB 2005 Illinois
Zoltan Mesko P 2005 Michigan
Eugene Monroe T 2005 Virginia
Kenny Phillips S 2005 Miami
Brady Quinn QB 2003 Notre Dame
Konrad Reuland TE 2006 ND -> Stanford
Antonio Richardson T 2011 Tennessee
Keith Rivers LB 2004 USC
Trevor Robinson C/G 2008 Notre Dame
Jordan Shipley WR 2004 Texas
Marcus Spears DE 2001 LSU
Tom Zbikiowski S 2003 Notre Dame
Kamerion Wimbley DE 2002 Florida State
Percy Harvin WR 2006 Florida