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Tag:Chip Patterson
Posted on: August 4, 2011 10:06 am
Edited on: August 4, 2011 10:10 am
 

Ga. Tech DL McCoy sidelined by medical condition

Posted by Chip Patterson

Georgia Tech touted defensive lineman Denzel McCoy unfortunately will never get to see his time on the field for the Yellow Jackets, his career reportedly over due to an undisclosed medial condition. CBSSports.com's Larry Hartstein reports that head coach Paul Johnson has made the difficult, but necessary, decision to keep the redshirt freshman off the field.

"It's disappointing for Denzel, but we've got to look out for his well-being," Johnson said. "It's just not worth the risk.

"You just tell him, 'There are bigger things than football.' He came here to get a degree from Georgia Tech and hopefully he'll do that."

Just because McCoy can't be on the field with his teammates does not mean that Johnson plans to keep him from being a part of the program. According to Ken Sugiura of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, McCoy will remain on scholarship and work as an assistant to the director of player personnel.

McCoy had offers from Alabama, Auburn, Florida State, Notre Dame, Penn State, and Stanford - to name a few - coming out of high school. Doctors first discovered this undisclosed condition last summer before his freshman year. It is disappointing that McCoy's football career could be over just as it was starting, but a lot of credit goes to the Georgia Tech doctors and training staff for keeping the players health as the top priority.
Posted on: August 4, 2011 9:44 am
Edited on: August 4, 2011 3:58 pm
 

James Rodgers cleared for 'limited' practice

Posted by Chip Patterson

Oregon State star wide receiver James Rodgers has had a tumultuous 10 months since suffering a season-ending knee injury against Arizona last October. Rodgers has undergone two knee operations and a difficult recovery process, but the redshirt senior has finally been granted permission from doctors to return to the field.

"After consultation with the physician, James Rodgers has been cleared to practice in a limited fashion for a to-be-determined amount of time," head coach Mike Riley announced in a prepared statement.

Riley said that there would be more meetings with the physician and more information in the coming weeks, but for Beaver fans any positive news is encouraging regarding Rodgers' health. The wideout was granted a fifth year of eligibility after missing the final seven games of the 2010 season. James brother, Jacquizz, led the Beavers in rushing last year picking up 1,258 yards and 14 touchdowns. James will be wearing Jacquizz's number (No. 1) in 2011, and has the potential to have an equally impressive impact if he can stay healthy. Rodgers serves not only as a dangerous deep threat but is also is the focal point of Oregon State's return game when healthy.

Oregon State will kick off fall camp Aug. 8.
Posted on: August 3, 2011 5:52 pm
 

Backup UNC RB Hunter Furr seeking transfer

Posted by Chip Patterson

When Butch Davis was dismissed as head coach of the North Carolina football program, many Tar Heel fans feared that potentially upset players may seek playing opportunities elsewhere. On Wednesday, interim head coach Everett Withers announced that backup running back Hunter Furr plans to leave the program.

"Hunter came to me this week and asked for his release," Withers said. "He is seeking an opportunity for more playing time and I respect his wishes. We've enjoyed having Hunter in the program and I wish him nothing but the best as he continues his college career."

Furr, who had five carries for 30 yards in the 2010 season, appears to be leaving for reasons completely unrelated to Davis' dismissal.

"I would like to thank the entire Carolina coaching staff for their support and guidance over the last two years," said Furr. "I''ve enjoyed being a part of this program and I've developed several great relationships with teammates and coaches. I feel it's in the best interest of my football career to transfer and compete for playing time at another institution. I have nothing but respect for Caoch Withers and I believe he will do an outstanding job building the program."

Furr was listed as the second string running back on the final spring depth chart behind Ryan Houston, but it is possible that with the new availability of redshirt freshman running back Gio Bernard he was beginning to see his window closing. The 5-foot-10, 205-pound Bernard was ranked as a top 15 running back nationally by most scouting services and is expected to serve as a compliment to Houston's more physical running style.

Withers also announced on Wednesday the completion of the coaching staff for the 2011 season with the promotion of Steve Sisa to safeties coach. Sisa worked in player development last season, and will step into the role left vacant when Withers was promoted.

"With practice beginning in just a few days, we wanted to move quickly to complete our staff," Withers said. "I felt it was most important to add someone who knew the players and was a good fit with our other coaches. Steve has developed outstanding relationships with our players and is excited to begin."

The Tar Heels open fall camp on Friday in Chapel Hill.
Posted on: August 3, 2011 10:46 am
 

TCU 2012 Big East schedule released

Posted by Chip Patterson

CBSSports.com's Brett McMurphy spoke with TCU athletic director Chris Del Conte at Big East Media Day this week in regards to the program's future, particularly in the Big East. Del Conte spoke about head coach Gary Patterson's opportunity to "create his own shadow" and the $105 million expansion and renovation to Amon Carter Stadium. The stadium construction is expected to be done in time for the 2012 season, which will kick off against Grambling Sept. 8.

Here's how the Horned Frogs first season in the Big East is shaping up:

HOME GAMES
Grambling
Oklahoma
Virginia
Cincinnati
Louisville
South Florida
West Virginia

ROAD GAMES
Pittsburgh
Connecticut
Rutgers
Syracuse


Seems pointless to try and predict how this schedule will look for the Horned Frogs seeing as we are still a season away, but we can do it anyway.

Connecticut, Rutgers, and Syracuse were picked 6,7, and 8 in the 2011 preseason media poll, so I find it difficult to foresee either of those teams quickly becoming big-time threats before 2012. Pittsburgh could certainly present a challenge, though much of the defense that is expected to dominate in 2011 will have graduated. I expect opportunity to host the rest of the possible Big East title contenders in a rowdy new stadium will benefit the Horned Frogs in their initial season as a league member.
Posted on: August 3, 2011 9:35 am
Edited on: August 3, 2011 9:41 am
 

Report: Henderson could miss entire 2011 season

Posted by Chip Patterson

When Miami head coach Al Golden addressed the status of touted offensive tackle Seantrel Henderson at ACC Media Day, he was proud to inform the media that Henderson had dropped his weight just under 350 pounds and was getting in shape after being troubled with some back issues in the spring. He did not expect Henderson to be ready for the start of camp, guessing that he would miss the first "7-10 days."

The expectations for Henderson changed on Tuesday when it was reported that the sophomore tackle will undergo back surgery, with no timetable set for his return. According to the report, Henderson's procedure is scheduled for Aug. 8, but no details have been revealed on the extent of the operation.

Tuesday evening Jorge Milian, of the Palm Beach Post, cited a team source that suggested Henderson could miss the entire 2011 season, with many other reports around Miami suggesting a similar outcome.

Henderson was the top rated recruit in the nation coming out of high school and started 10 games for the Hurricanes in his freshman campaign. However, back issues kept him limited during spring practice and he was expected to battle 6-foot-7 320-pound Malcom Bunche for the started tackle job this fall.

If Henderson is out for the season, the greatest hit the Hurricanes will take is to their depth. Bunche has received good reviews from his work in the spring, but the redshirt freshman still hasn't seen any action in a game. Luckily for Miami, seniors Harland Gunn, Tyler Horn, and All-ACC senior Brandon Washington are all healthy and ready to lead the unit heading into camp.

The school has not made an official statment on Henderson's status, but Golden is expected to address the issue on Friday in a news conference.
Posted on: August 2, 2011 1:50 pm
Edited on: August 2, 2011 1:51 pm
 

Big East Media Day: Coaches Highlights

Posted by Chip Patterson

Big East Media Day got started in Newport the the release of the preseason media poll and opening remarks from commissioner John Marinatto and all eight head coaches. Each coach was given several minutes to address the media and share some thoughts on the upcoming season.

Pretty much every coach spent some time talking about the competition in the league. It was pointed out several times that 5 of the 8 teams have earned a share of the conference title since 2006, and all eight teams have earned at least one bowl berth in the last two years. Also many of the coaches expressed their excitement for the arrival of TCU and the topic of the upcoming media deal negotiation was not ignored. Other than Rutgers head coach Greg Schiano, no other coach has been in his current post for longer than three seasons. The anxiousness to get into fall camp was another common theme, particularly for new coaches Todd Graham, Dana Holgorsen, and Paul Pasqualoni.

Below are some highlights from each coach's time at the podium.

Rutgers - Greg Schiano

- Schiano acknowledged the late-season collapse from 2010. "The wheels came off," he explained to the media. "We'll return Rutgers football to its winning ways, to bowl games." The Scarlet Knights had been to five straight bowl games (winning four in a row) until 2010's last place finish.

- One of the weakest points in Rutgers' offense a year ago was the offensive line. With new offensive coordinator Frank Cignetti, Schiano believes the Scarlet Knights will return to being a "power football team." Says they've made some schematic changes to the line, but also believes they "are a better group than we were at any time last year."

- Highly touted running back Savon Huggins has become a star in the Rutgers football community before even setting foot on campus. Schiano made no promises about the starting running back position, but instead listed the entire group and said that Huggins will "make for great competition" when camp opens.

West Virginia - Dana Holgorsen

- "Excited to get to do this a year early" was the closest Holgorsen came to mentioning former head coach Bill Stewart. However he did spend a considerable amount of time complimenting the work of defensive coordinator Jeff Casteel. While the Mountaineers lost seven starters from the defensive unit to the NFL, Holgorsen believes they have a "good nucleus" of players coming back to lead the 2011 edition of Casteel's defense.

- Holgorsen said that quarterback Geno Smith has picked up the new offensive system well. While Holgorsen has only been head coach since June, he's been working with the offense since his arrival in Morgantown before spring practice. He said that Smith's challenge now is "to make everyone around him better."

- "Tavon Austin is a dynamic kid who can touch the ball in a whole bunch of different ways," Holgorsen said of the junior playmaker. He made it clear the Mountaineers plan on putting the ball in his hands as much as they can.

Syracuse - Doug Marrone

- With an 8-5 finish and a Pinstripe Bowl victory, the Orange are fresh off their most successful season since 2001. Marrone, entering his second year on the job, made it clear that the goals for the program are to create a foundation and "become a competitive team year in and year out" in the league. The media projected the Orange to finish fourth in the conference, but well behind West Virginia, Pittsburgh, and USF.

- The Orange lost a lot of talent on defense, and Marrone made it clear that there will be lots of competition over the next month in camp. While the unit is solid at defensive end and safety, it sounds like the interior line, outside linebackers, and corner back positions are up for grabs.

- There was no update on the medical status of Prince-Tyson Gulley or any team decision regarding recently arrested wide receiver Marcus Sales. It has been reported that Gulley has been released from the hospital and is recovering at home, but the coach made no statement on either situation.

Charlie Strong - Louisville

- Strong won over the Cardinals football community in his first year by taking the team back to the postseason for the firs time since the 2006 season, when the Cardinals were Big East champions. He was able to deliver a bowl game experience to a team that had 25 seniors, with 14 in the starting lineup. Strong made it clear that the Cardinals will be looking for players to step up this fall, filling in for the mass exodus of players from the two-deep.

- There is no hiding the lack of experience at quarterback for the Cardinals. Junior Will Stein has the most experience of the group (2 starts), but Strong made sure to mention dual-threat freshman Teddy Bridgewater and wildcard QB Dominique Brown as well. In spring practice it looked like Stein had a lead on the job thanks to his comfort with the offense, but clearly every candidate will get a shot to earn snaps this fall.

- Strong said that the defense will likely be the team's strength this season, particularly the defensive line. Three starters return from last year's unit, and the entire two-deep has game experience. The Cardinals also return both starting safeties, most notably 2nd team All-Big East sophomore Hakeem Smith.

Paul Pasqualoni - Connecticut

- It seems odd that one of the "first-year" coaches was present for the first season of Big East football in 1991, but such is the way things have worked out for Connecticut's Paul Pasqualoni. He pointed out how different the league is now, noting that the diversity of champions in recent years contrasts to the conference's inception - where Miami took 9 of the first 13 Big East titles.

- With no starting quarterback (Pasqualoni has decided to let all four candidates continue to compete into fall camp), there has been an emphasis placed on the offensive line. The Huskies did a fantastic job moving the ball with Jordan Todman in 2010, and Pasqualoni hopes that USC-transfer D.J. Shoemate will be able to find similar success this fall.

- Expect multiple looks from the Huskies defense this season. Explained that he and defensive coordinator Don Brown (formerly with Maryland) have different backgrounds and are "merging" their systems. There will be some 3-4 and some 4-3 as the Huskies continue to develop the linebacker position. Pasqualoni says that he has an "outstanding defensive line," anchored by all-conference defensive tackle Kendall Reyes.

Todd Graham - Pittsburgh

- When Graham took the podium, it was impossible not to recognize his feeling of pride after being introduced as the Pittsburgh coach. He opened talking about how far he has come, from coaching middle school football 25 years ago to now finally being a head coach in a BCS AQ conference. He mentioned his great memories as an assistant at West Virginia (his first collegiate job), and expressed his excitement to return to the conference. He also indirectly gave credit to former head coach Dave Wannstedt, saying he "has a lot of respect for the job that has been done before him" to bring this team together.

- Graham used the phrase "high-octane" several times during his remarks, and Panther fans should get excited for what it could mean for the offense this fall. Not only will it lead to exciting football, but Graham actually believes that it will better suit quarterback Tino Sunseri as well. According to Graham, moving the returning starter back into the shotgun "accentuates" his talents.

- For all the talk about Graham's new "high-octane" offense, he was sure to point out his excitement for the defense, which returns most of a unit that ranked 8th nationally in 2010. In addition to the returning starters, the coaching staff is excited about the development that they saw this spring on the defensive side of the ball. Graham also singled out senior nose tackle Myles Caragein as "the leader of this football team."

Buch Jones - Cincinnati

- Unlike the rest of his colleagues, Jones spent no time going over personnel or specific team outlook in his opening remarks. Instead he commented mostly on his admiration for the conference and pleasure to be coaching the 5th oldest college football program in the nation. Leadership is clearly a theme of his right now, although he called it "misunderstood" by many in America. It was confusing, I know. I'm guessing he is saving all his specific football chatter for the afternoon.

- One remotely football topic Jones covered involved his opening remarks was returning an entire defensive unit. He described that it is "one thing to be older, but we have to be better," when referring to the returning defense. The Bearcats ranked near the bottom of the conference in most defensive categories, and must improve if they want to turn around last season's 4-8 performance.

Skip Holtz - USF

- I'll give the second-year Bulls' coach one thing: he deliver a straightforward and enthusiastic message. "We were three plays a year ago from winning 11 games," Holtz said. "But we were three plays away from probably winning four." The Bulls went to overtime twice in 2010, and played in seven games decided by 8 points or less. Holtz, who described his first year on the job as "a blur," clearly understands how close the conference competition can get in the Big East.

- Holtz spent a considerable amount of time praising the university's leadership for their efforts in USF's growth. From facilities to funding, the entire athletic department has benefited from an initiative by the school to become more than a "commuter school." According to Holtz, seeing the campus-wide push has created a sense of excitement around Tampa.

- Speaking of excitement, Holtz identified the Bulls' late season wins over Miami in Coral Gables and Clemson in the Belk Bowl as victories that created a "snowball effect" for the team. He said the way the team came together and finished the season created a lot of excitement about the future. But Holtz knows it is still too early to make any projections regarding the 2011 season.

"From August 3 to September 3 we are going to learn a lot about this football team," Holtz explained. "I think that the next month will determine the amount of success we have [as a football team]."

Posted on: August 2, 2011 1:29 pm
Edited on: August 2, 2011 1:31 pm
 

Virginia Tech All-ACC lineman out 4-6 weeks

Posted by Chip Patterson

As defending ACC Champions, it was no surprise to see Virginia Tech pull in several preseason honors at the ACC Football Kickoff last week in Pinehurst. The Hokies were once again picked by the media to win the Coastal Division, and three players were selected to the preseason All-ACC team.

One of those players, senior tackle Blake DeChristopher, is now questionable for the start of the season after straining a pectoral muscle. According to the team's trainer, DeChristopher strained his left pectoral muscle and will be out 4-6 weeks recovering.

While the Hokies are flushed with returning talent on the offensive line, losing a player of DeChristopher's caliber is a huge blow to the unit. He has been a starter since arriving in Blacksburg, and never has the line more important than they will be protecting new starting quarterback Logan Thomas and clearing holes for junior running back David Wilson.

Either redshirt junior Michael Via or junior Vinston Painter is expected to take over DeChristopher's duties until his return.
Posted on: August 2, 2011 9:33 am
 

Big East preseason media poll released

Posted by Chip Patterson

Big East Media Day kicked off Tuesday in Newport, RI with the announcement of the preseason media poll. West Virginia was the overwhelming favorite of the voting media at the event, collecting nearly all of the the first-place votes. With Pittsburgh coming in second place, the highest expectations will be on the conference's two newest coaches: Dana Holgorsen and Todd Graham. While Connecticut head coach Paul Pasqualoni is new at his post with the Huskies, he is no stranger to the conference after spending 13 seasons as the Syracuse head coach.

Here is the full rundown of the preseason media poll. Do you agree with the media? Let us know what you think in the comment section below.

1. West Virginia (21) - 188
2. Pittsburgh (2) - 162
3. USF (1) - 151
4. Syracuse - 98
5. Cincinnati - 96
6. Connecticut - 76
7. Louisville - 60
8. Rutgers - 33
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com