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Tag:non-BCS
Posted on: July 11, 2011 7:33 pm
Edited on: July 11, 2011 7:50 pm
 

2011 Lou Groza Award watch list announced

Posted by Adam Jacobi

Here's the 30-man watch list of the 2011 Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker Award, as compiled by the Palm Beach County Sports Commission. The Groza Award has been awarded since 1992 to the best kicker in FBS (formerly I-A) college football.


Michael Barbour, East Carolina
Casey Barth, North Carolina
Rob Beard, Oregon
Maikon Bonani, South Florida
Randy Bullock, Texas A&M
Dan Conroy, Michigan State
Derek Dimke, Illinois
Ross Evans, TCU
Mitch Ewald, Indiana
Trey Farquhar, Idaho
Erik Folk, Washington
Nate Freese, Boston College
Kevin Goessling, Fresno State
Jack Griffin, FIU
Zach Hocker, Arkansas
Dustin Hopkins, Florida State
Danny Hrapmann, Southern Miss
Aaron Jones, Baylor
Ross Krautman, Syracuse
Abel Perez, San Diego State
Grant Ressel, Missouri
Bryson Rose, Ole Miss
David Ruffer, Notre Dame
Jimmy Stevens, Oklahoma
Will Snyderwine, Duke
Dave Teggart, UConn
Justin Tucker, Texas
Blair Walsh, Georgia
Phillip Welch, Wisconsin
Alex Zendejas, Stanford 

Overall, this is a pretty balanced -- and extensive -- list. The Big 12 leads all comers with five listed kickers out of 10, and all of the BCS conferences have at least three representatives on this list. 

Picking a favorite at this point of the process is nearly impossible. Not only is picking a top kicker such a subjective process that Alex Henery was left off the list of finalists entirely last season, but there's just a ton of good kickers this year. Here's the average stat line of these 30 kickers last year:

18.33 FGM, 21.93 FGA, .836 FG%; 43.97-44.97 XP, .978 XP%

Again, that's not an award-winning line; that's the average line of the top 30 non-senior kickers in 2010. Half of these guys missed three FGs or fewer on the entire year, and 14 hit all of their extra points. Whoever advances to the semifinalist and finalist stages is going to do so by the slimmest of margins, and we're talking about a sport with substantial statistical variations from year to year. That's not to say that Dan Conroy's going to go out and miss 10 field goals in a row or anything, but these guys are affected in some degree by the situations they're put into.

Posted on: July 11, 2011 5:18 pm
Edited on: July 11, 2011 5:27 pm
 

2011 Ray Guy watch list announced

Posted by Adam Jacobi

Here are the five members of this year's 2011 Ray Guy Award watch list, as determined by the Augusta Sports Council:

Bryan Anger (Sr.), California
Drew Butler (Sr.), Georgia
Kyle Martens (Sr.), Rice
Quinn Sharp (Jr.), Oklahoma State
Dawson Zimmerman (Sr.), Clemson

Obviously, Drew Butler (yes, the son of former Dawg kicker Kevin Butler) is the big name here, as he won the award as a sophomore in 2009 (see right) and was a finalist again last season. But compared to some of the other names on the list, Butler was a little -- just a little -- disappointing in 2010.

His 44.5 yards per punt were only good for 17th in the nation. Fortunately, Butler so rarely committed a touchback or outkicked his coverage that the Bulldogs still averaged more than 40 yards net per punt, which ranked fourth in the NCAA. Butler also uncorked a 50-yard punt in every game but two last year: the last two games of the regular season against Auburn and Georgia Tech, both of whose defenses were so cruelly porous that they only generated two opportunities for Butler to punt each game. Give Butler three opportunities, and he's going 50 at least once.

Past that, Oklahoma State's Quinn Sharp has a cannon of a leg, and he was second in the nation in punting average last year (the Cowboys were third in net punting average). With Brandon Weeden and Justin Blackmon both coming back in 2011, the Cowboys may not have a great deal of opportunities to punt this season, but as long as we're keeping track of punts by average yardage instead of total, Sharp should be fine.

One quibble, though, and I know this is just a watch list, but where the heck is UCLA punter Jeff Locke?

The senior is recovering from a hip injury that has kept him out of spring drills, so perhaps that's why he was left off the list. But a) UCLA expects him to be healthy for fall camp, and b) the man bombs. He has registered 34 touchbacks on kickoffs over the last two years; UCLA led the nation in net punting average last year; and Locke plays on a team with such a, shall we say, punt-intensive offense that he'll have loads of opportunities to show off his leg in 2011.

If his hip's working the way UCLA expects it to, he'll be a finalist for this award, when the list really matters.

Posted on: July 11, 2011 3:56 pm
 

2011 Outland Trophy Watch List released

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

Rolling on with the past weekend's Watch List announcements, here's the Outland Trophy's preliminary list. The trophy is handed out annually by the Football Writers Association of America to the nation's top interior lineman--either a defensive tackle, guard or center.

The 65 players on this year's Watch List are as follows:
Levy Adcock, Oklahoma State, OT
Jeff Allen, Illinois, OT
Don Barclay, West Virginia, OT
Chris Barker, Nevada, G
Kelvin Beachum, SMU, OT
Tony Bergstrom, Utah, OT
Mike Brewster, Ohio State, C
Ryan Miller, Colorado, G
David Molk, Michigan, C
Al Netter, Northwestern, OT
Lucas Nix, Pittsburgh, OT
Xavier Nixon, Florida, OT
Trevor Olson, Northern Illinois, OT
Kelechi Osemele, Iowa State, OT
Moe Petrus, Connecticut, C
Ken Plue, Purdue, G  
Dontari Poe, Memphis, DT
Nate Potter, Boise State, OT
Tydreke Powell, North Carolina, DT
Kheeston Randall, Texas, DT
Riley Reiff, Iowa, OT
Kendall Reyes, Connecticut, DT
Matt Reynolds, BYU, OT
Mitchell Schwartz, California, OT
Kawann Short, Purdue, DT
Bradley Sowell, Ole Miss, OT
Akeem Spence, Illinois, DT
Alameda Ta'amu, Washington, DT
Lane Taylor, Oklahoma State, G
Chris Thompson, Houston, C
Omoregie Uzzi, Georgia Tech, G
William Vlachos, Alabama, C
Larry Warford, Kentucky, G
Brandon Washington, Miami, G
Rokevious Watkins, South Carolina, OT
Billy Winn, Boise State, DT
Derek Wolfe, Cincinnati, DT
Jerel Worthy, Michigan State, DT
Kevin Zeitler, Wisconsin, G
By the conference numbers: Big Ten 13, SEC 11, Pac-12 9, ACC 7, Big 12 7, Big East 6, Conference USA 3, Independents 3, Mountain West 2, WAC 2, MAC 1, Sun Belt 1.

Posted on: July 11, 2011 3:03 pm
Edited on: July 11, 2011 4:04 pm
 

2011 Thorpe Award Watch List released

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

The 13-day reveal of Watch Lists for college football's major awards rolls on today with the Thorpe Award, given annually to the nation's top defensive back. Thirty-seven names made the Thorpe's initial list:
Ray Ray Armstrong, Miami (Fla.), SS
Mark Barron, Alabama, SS
John Boyett, Oregon, FS
Brandon Boykin, Georgia, CB
Morris Claiborne, LSU, CB
Alfonzo Dennard, Nebraska, CB
Tony Dye, UCLA, CB
Matt Elam, Florida, SS
Antonio Fenelus, Wisconsin, CB
Jamell Fleming, Oklahoma, CB
Donnie Fletcher, Boston College, CB
Blake Gideon, Texas, FS
Stephon Gilmore, South Carolina, CB
Casey Hayward, Vanderbilt, CB
Jayron Hosley, Virginia Tech, CB
Delano Howell, Stanford, SS
Duke Ihenacho, San Jose State, SS
George Iloka, Boise State, FS
Tony Jefferson, Oklahoma, FS
Leonard Johnson, Iowa State, CB
Coryell Judie, Texas A&M, CB
Dre Kirkpatrick, Alabama, CB
Robert Lester, Alabama, FS
Markelle Martin, Oklahoma State, SS
TJ McDonald, USC, FS
Chase Minnifield, Virginia, CB
Marco Nelson, Tulsa, FS
Brian Peters, Northwestern, FS
Greg Reid, Florida State, CB
Xavier Rhodes, Florida State, CB
Josh Robinson, UCF, CB
Trenton Robinson, Michigan State, FS
Harrison Smith, Notre Dame, FS
Keith Tandy, West Virginia, CB
Kenny Tate, Maryland, FS
Tramain Thomas, Arkansas, FS
Prentiss Waggner, Tennessee, SS
The conference-by-conference numbers break down as you might expect. Via the Jim Thorpe association press release: SEC (10); ACC (7); Big 12 (6); Big 10 (4); PAC 12 (4); C-USA (2); WAC (2); Big East (1); Independents (1). (Though no one was good enough to make the cut out of the Mountain West?) (Nevermind; the Thorpe's original tally still includes Boise State in the WAC.)

Of last year's 10 semifinalists, only Alabama's Mark Barron returns to the Watch List. (As for where Oregon's Cliff Harris is, we're not sure. Maybe the Thorpe is waiting to see how long his traffic arrest-induced suspension lasts?)



Posted on: July 8, 2011 10:52 am
Edited on: July 8, 2011 11:02 am
 

Outland Trophy Watch List released

Posted by Chip Patterson

Check the time, we got another watch for you. 

The Football Writers Association of America also released its 2011 Outland Trophy Watch list on Friday.

The trophy is awarded annually to the best interior lineman in college football. Only tackles, guards and centers from both sides of the ball (defensive tackles are included) are eligible for the award. Of the 65 players currently on the watch list, 16 of them are defensive tackles.

The Outland Trophy dates back to 1946 and is one of the oldest annual awards in college football.

This award honors the often-thankless positions that fight in the trenches and establish the line every Saturday. Last year's winner was Wisconsin OT Gabe Carimi.

Who do you have pegged as a favorite in 2011? Let us know in the comment section below.

2011 OUTLAND TROPHY PRESEASON WATCH LIST (65)
Levy Adcock, Oklahoma State, OT Ryan Miller, Colorado, G
Jeff Allen, Illinois, OT David Molk, Michigan, C
Don Barclay, West Virginia, OT Al Netter, Northwestern, OT
Chris Barker, Nevada, G Lucas Nix, Pittsburgh, OT
Kelvin Beachum, SMU, OT Xavier Nixon, Florida, OT
Tony Bergstrom, Utah, OT Trevor Olson, Northern Illinois, OT
Mike Brewster, Ohio State, C Kelechi Osemele, Iowa State, OT
James Brown, Troy, OT Moe Petrus, Connecticut, C
Jared Crick, Nebraska, DT Ken Plue, Purdue, G
Andrew Datko, Florida State, OT Dontari Poe, Memphis, DT
David DeCastro, Stanford, G Nate Potter, Boise State, OT
Blake DeChristopher, Virginia Tech, OT Tydreke Powell, North Carolina, DT
Lonnie Edwards, Texas Tech, G Kheeston Randall, Texas, DT
Joel Foreman, Michigan State, G Riley Reiff, Iowa, OT
Marcus Forston, Miami, DT Kendall Reyes, Connecticut, DT
Dalton Freeman, Clemson, C Matt Reynolds, BYU, OT
Garth Gerhart, Arizona State, C Mitchell Schwartz, California, OT
Cordy Glenn, Georgia, OT Kawann Short, Purdue, DT
Ben Habern, Oklahoma, C Bradley Sowell, Ole Miss, OT
Braden Hansen, BYU, G Akeem Spence, Illinois, DT
Logan Harrell, Fresno State, DT Alameda Ta'amu, Washington, DT
Dan Hoch, Missouri, OT Lane Taylor, Oklahoma State, G
Khaled Holmes, USC, C Chris Thompson, Houston, C
Jaye Howard, Florida, DT Omoregie Uzzi, Georgia Tech, G
Malik Jackson, Tennessee, DT William Vlachos, Alabama, C
Chris Jacobson, Pittsburgh, G Larry Warford, Kentucky, G
T.J. Johnson, South Carolina, C Brandon Washington, Miami, G
Barrett Jones, Alabama, G Rokevious Watkins, South Carolina, OT
Ben Jones, Georgia, C Billy Winn, Boise State, DT
Matt Kalil, USC, OT Derek Wolfe, Cincinnati, DT
Jonathan Martin, Stanford, OT Jerel Worthy, Michigan State, DT
Mike Martin, Michigan, DT Kevin Zeitler, Wisconsin, G
Zack Martin, Notre Dame, OT  
By conference: Big Ten 13, SEC 11, Pac-12 9, ACC 7, Big 12 7, Big East 6, Conference USA 3, Independents 3, Mountain West 2, WAC 2, MAC 1, Sun Belt 1.
Tackles, guards and centers are eligible for consideration
Candidates may be added or removed during the season

Posted on: July 8, 2011 10:40 am
Edited on: July 8, 2011 10:53 am
 

Bronko Nagurski Watch List released

Posted by Chip Patterson

The "Watch" Watch continues on as the Football Writers Association of America and the Charlotte Touchdown Club have released the first watch list for the 2011 Bronko Nagurski Trophy.

The award is given annually to the nation's best defensive player, as selected by FWAA All-America Committee members. Players can be added or deleted from the watch list at any time throughout the season, a player not on the list can work his way on by being name Defensive Player of the Week by the FWAA.

Check out the full watch list below. Any snubs? Who's your favorite? Let us know in the comment section below.

2011 BRONKO NAGURSKI TROPHY PRESEASON WATCH LIST (87)
Ray-Ray Armstrong, Miami, S Markelle Martin, Oklahoma State, S
Mark Barron, Alabama, S Mike Martin, Michigan, DT
Jake Bequette, Arkansas, DE Chris Marve, Vanderbilt, LB
Brandon Boykin, Georgia, CB Jonathan Massaquoi, Troy, DE
Nigel Bradham, Florida State, LB Michael Mauti, Penn State, LB
Tanner Brock, TCU, LB T.J. McDonald, USC, S
Arthur Brown, Kansas State, LB Chase Minnifield, Virginia, CB
Zach Brown, North Carolina, LB Charles Mitchell, Mississippi State, S
Vince Browne, Northwestern, DE Roosevelt Nix, Kent State, DE
Vontaze Burfict, Arizona State, LB Donte Paige-Moss, North Carolina, DE
Miles Burris, San Diego State, LB Dontari Poe, Memphis, DT
Tank Carder, TCU, LB Tydreke Powell, North Carolina, DT
Morris Claiborne, LSU, CB Shaun Prater, Iowa, CB
Quinton Coples, North Carolina, DE Kheeston Randall, Texas, DT
Fletcher Cox, Mississippi State, DE Kendall Reyes, Connecticut, DT
Jared Crick, Nebraska, DT Xavier Rhodes, Florida State, CB
Vinny Curry, Marshall, DE Adrian Robinson, Temple, DE
Lavonte David, Nebraska, LB Josh Robinson, UCF, CB
Alfonzo Dennard, Nebraska, CB Keenan Robinson, Texas, LB
Tony Dye, UCLA, S J.K. Schaffer, Cincinnati, LB
Marcus Forston, Miami, DT Kawann Short, Purdue, DT
Jerry Franklin, Arkansas, LB Mychal Sisson, Colorado State, LB
Stephon Gilmore, South Carolina, CB Shayne Skov, Stanford, LB
Zaviar Gooden, Missouri, LB Harrison Smith, Notre Dame, S
Logan Harrell, Fresno State, DT Akeem Spence, Illinois, DT
Cliff Harris, Oregon, CB Sean Spence, Miami, LB
Casey Hayward, Vanderbilt, CB Alameda Ta'amu, Washington, DT
Dont'a Hightower, Alabama, LB Keith Tandy, West Virginia, CB
Jayron Hosley, Virginia Tech, CB Kenny Tate, Maryland, S/LB
Jaye Howard, Florida, DT Bruce Taylor, Virginia Tech, LB
Delano Howell, Stanford, S Devin Taylor, South Carolina, DE
Bruce Irvin, West Virginia, DE Manti Te'o, Notre Dame, LB
Malik Jackson, Tennessee, DT Taylor Thompson, SMU, DE
Brandon Jenkins, Florida State, DE Danny Trevathan, Kentucky, LB
James-Michael Johnson, Nevada, LB Courtney Upshaw, Alabama, LB
Coryell Judie, Texas A&M, CB Prentiss Waggner, Tennessee, S
Mychal Kendricks, California, LB Bobby Wagner, Utah State, LB
Dre Kirkpatrick, Alabama, CB Brian Wagner, Akron, LB
Jake Knott, Iowa State, LB Korey Williams, Southern Miss, LB
Luke Kuechly, Boston College, LB Nathan Williams, Ohio State, DE
Robert Lester, Alabama, S Billy Winn, Boise State, DT
Travis Lewis, Oklahoma, LB Derek Wolfe, Cincinnati, DT
Brandon Lindsey, Pittsburgh, DE Jerel Worthy, Michigan State, DT
Brad Madison, Missouri, DE  
By conference: SEC 19, ACC 14, Big Ten 10, Big 12 9, Pac-12 9, Big East 6, Conference USA 5, Mountain West 5, Independents 3, MAC 3, WAC 3, Sun Belt 1.
Players may be added or deleted from the list before or during the season
Posted on: July 8, 2011 1:29 am
 

Forcier 'strongly considering' Hawaii, SJSU

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

He's already moved on from Michigan and Miami, so where's Tate Forcier headed next? From the sound of it, somewhere much closer to his original San Diego home. 

According to an ESPN report Thursday, Forcier is "strongly considering" two schools--Hawaii, where he plans to visit next week, and San Jose State. He is also reportedly holds an "interest" in Nevada.

If Forcier can wrangle a scholarship offer from all three of these schools -- and it's hard to imagine they wouldn't want to take a flier on him, considering his still-remarkable exploits as a true freshman for the Wolverines -- it seems somewhat obvious which would suit him best from a football standpoint. Hawaii has made stars out of plenty of quarterbacks before, and frequently ones that haven't possessed Forcier's live and accurate arm or his outstanding mobility in the pocket; the Warriors' Bryant Moniz, for instance, didn't receive a single scholarship offer coming out of high school before leading the entire FBS in passing yards last season. 

Like the Warriors, Nevada will also offer an established program playing at the Mountain West level starting next year. But at 6'0" and 185 pounds, Forcier may not have the frame necessary to absorb the poundings taken by the quarterback in Chris Ault's option-heavy pistol offense. (Though for what it's worth, Forcier was asked to make similar option reads out of Rich Rodriguez's shotgun during his time at Michigan; we're not sure he appeared to have any particular aptitude for it, however.)

As for SJSU, the Spartans have been a WAC doormat for years and are coming off a two-year span featuring all of three wins. Those fortunes might change under second-year coach Mike MacIntyre, but even if it does, will anyone notice once the conference has waved goodbye to Hawaii, Nevada, Boise State and Fresno State? 

Again, though: that's all from a football perspective. After both Tate's and older brothers Chris and Jason Forcier's nation-spanning careers (including collective stops at UCLA, Stanford, Michigan and Furman) family concerns -- not to mention academic concerns, after Tate's classroom issues in Ann Arbor -- may come first. And if that's the case, all bets are off.

Posted on: July 7, 2011 3:21 pm
Edited on: July 7, 2011 4:01 pm
 

This season could be Schnellenberger's last

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

There aren't too many head coaches that could be accurately described as "legends" still walking a college football sideline, but Howard Schnellenberger is one of them. The 77-year-old architect of the modern-day versions of former sad-sacks Miami and Louisville is now in his 11th season at Florida Atlantic, the Boca Raton program he guided from the ground up into the 2007 Sun Belt championship.

But could those 11 seasons be enough for either "Schnelly" or the administrators at FAU? Per today's article in the Sun-Sentinel, it sounds like they might be:
FAU Athletic Director Craig Angelos said he won't be discussing another extension [for Schnellenberger] until after the upcoming season.
"The focus this season is on opening our stadium and honoring all those who worked so hard to make it happen, and Howard was the one that pushed the hardest," Angelos said ...
As far as coaching beyond this season, Schnellenberger has been noncommittal, other than to say he would like to stay connected to the program.
"My plan is to be here in whatever capacity is best for the university or myself," Schnellenberger said ...
FAU needs to average at least 12,000 fans per game to generate enough income to pay off the stadium, so there will be pressure to win and generate fan interest.
"The more excitement surrounding the program the better for all of us. If you are relevant on the landscape and you will be better received," Angelos said.
Unfortunately for Schnellenberger, his team didn't win or generate much fan interest last year. The Owls went a disappinting 4-8 in 2010, and it wasn't even a watchable 4-8; the moribund FAU offense finished 113th in the FBS in scoring at less than 17 points per game. After three straight years of declining victories and few observers expecting anything special this year, it's easy to argue the program has already hit its peak under Schnellenberger.

The new stadium could change all of that, of course. But with both coach and administration so noncommittal, it seems equally possible that finally seeing it opened will be the final check mark on Schnellenberger's career "bucket list," and one more legend will ride off into the Florida sunset.


 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com