Alabama has suspended linebacker Xzavier Dickson and running back Alvin Kamara for the Sugar Bowl, Andrew Gribble of AL.com reports. Crimson Tide coach Nick Saban announced the suspensions after Thursday’s practice.
Dickson backed up linebacker Denzel Devall in all 12 games for Alabama, tallying 13 tackles and a sack. Kamara did not see the field in 2013, thanks in part to an injured knee and the Tide’s depth at running back.
Alabama faces off against Oklahoma in the Allstate Sugar Bowl in New Orleans on Jan. 2.
We finally made it. Give yourselves a round of applause. I know how hard everyone worked all year. The late nights, the early mornings, the countless hours spent cooking, driving, sweating, shivering, cheering, yelling, scowling and refreshing Twitter feeds. This year took a lot out of all of us. But it was rewarding, that’s for sure. For a bit, it seemed as if this season might be a downer — but like every other year, it found ways to be truly special.
Between the Hashes wasn’t able to capture every great moment of 2013, but it certainly did its best to provide an accurate cross-section of the offbeat things that made up college football from week to week. What follows is an attempt to point out the best of the regular season. Feel free to add anything else you loved that didn’t make the cut in the comments.
As the great scholar Mario likes to say, let’s a go.
*Update: Voting for the first round is currently over. For second-round voting, please click here.
Maybe you hadn’t heard — and that’s okay, because it’s the holidays and they’re meant to be a time for families and sharing joy — but the Texas head-coaching job is currently open. After 16 seasons at the helm, Mack Brown officially resigned from his post last weekend to bring an end to the swirling rumors that engulfed most of the 2013 campaign. Now, everyone and their mother has been linked to the job. Nick Saban, Matthew McConaughey, Charlie Strong, a host of NFL candidates (including everyone’s favorite target Jon Gruden) and that Watson supercomputer from Jeopardy! are all on the list. Heck, you might be on the list, too. Because the holidays are also a time for making lists and checking them twice.
The Longhorns have assembled an eight-person search committee, but we here at Campus Union have come up with a better process for making a hire. The Texas job is for the people. This is America, after all. And these United States long for a democratic decision. The top 32 candidates who have been linked to the opening are included in SI.com’s winner-take-all bracket. The champion will (hypothetically) become the future Texas coach.
The Red Wolves have a new pack leader. After losing Bryan Harsin to the Boise State job on Dec. 11, Arkansas State has hired North Carolina offensive coordinator Blake Anderson as its next head coach, according to athletic director Terry Mohajir. Anderson will be the Red Wolves’ fourth coach in as many seasons. Steve Roberts was removed after a 4-8 campaign in 2010 for offensive coordinator Hugh Freeze. Freeze took the Ole Miss job after going 10-2 in Jonesboro in ’11, giving way to former Auburn offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn, who led the Red Wolves to a 9-3 record in ’12 before returning to the Plains.
Harsin, who served as an assistant at Boise State from 2001-10, had a brief two-year stint at Texas as quarterbacks coach and co-offensive coordinator before taking the Arkansas State job. When Petersen was hired at Washington after Steve Sarkisian left for USC, Harsin subsequently took over the Broncos. Which leads to Anderson’s ascension. The Red Wolves’ success is predicated on offense, and Anderson appears to be a good fit.
Lest we try and regale you with tales you’ve already heard about the Head Ball Coach, here’s a new one: Steve Spurrier on Gatorade baths. On Wednesday, the South Carolina coach talked about getting his guys back for dousing him in the electrolyte-packed sports drink. He discussed his plans of revenge and coaching up guys on proper Gatorade etiquette.
“By the way I got [Kyle] Fleetwood back today,” Spurrier said. “I got one of the two that hit me. The players got a big kick out of that too. He was on a knee during special teams. I got Fleetwood. I gotta get Kelcy Quarles. He’s next in line. He’s watching me everywhere I go now. It’s going to be tough to get Kelcy. But I got one of the two.”
Dino Babers will leave Eastern Illinois and become the new head coach at Bowling Green, the school announced on Wednesday.
Babers will replace Dave Clawson, who left Bowling Green to take over at Wake Forest. In a statement, Falcons’ athletic director D. Christopher Kingston said Babers’ background was a huge selling point in the university’s selection.
For the fifth consecutive year, Texas is the most valuable college football program, based on a study conducted by Forbes. Notre Dame is number two, with Alabama, LSU and Michigan rounding out the top five. The Longhorns are worth approximately $139 million, up $30 million from a year ago. The Fighting Irish are worth $117 million.
To determine college football’s most valuable teams, we consider each team’s value to its athletic department, its university’s academic endeavors, its conference and its school’s local economy. Athletic value consists of football profit that is directed toward supporting non-revenue sports, like softball or gymnastics, while a team’s value to academics consists of money that supports football scholarships or other non-athletic programming, like faculty support, non-athletic scholarships or a library fund. Conference value consists of revenue generated for other conference teams by participating in a bowl game, and a team’s value to its local community consists of the direct spending injected by fans visiting the area on days of the team’s home games.
Maryland students are known for placing items around the statue of Testudo, the Terrapins’ mascot located just outside of the school’s McKeldin Library, as “offerings” during finals week. But it seems at least one person in College Park took the tradition a step too far.
The 1,000-pound bronze cast and its offerings were set on fire a little after midnight on Wednesday, according to a report from the Baltimore Sun. A handful of Maryland students posted pictures of the fire on social media.
Louisiana-Lafayette (8-4) vs. Tulane (7-5)
Dec. 21, 9 p.m. ET (ESPN)
• Reason to watch: Louisiana-Lafayette’s offense has been mostly effective to date, averaging 34.6 points per game. Tulane ranks tied for 19th nationally in scoring defense, allowing only 21.2 points. When the teams collide in New Orleans, something has to give. The Green Wave also boast a turnover margin of 1.0, tied for ninth in the FBS. That opportunistic mindset is a major reason why coach Curtis Johnson’s program secured a bowl berth for the first time since 2002.
Half the fun of college football recruiting comes from the out of the box approaches certain coaching staffs take towards their prospects and recruits. Whether it’s Joker Phillips’ ridiculous Photoshops (#ComePlayWRForTheJoker) or Georgia Tech’s foreboding #themigration, recruits notice. But there’s still something to be said for the handwritten note.
NC State is famous for its YOU=BALLER technique. Now it seems Virginia has taken it a step further into obscurity. Three-star recruit and Virginia commit Jeffery Farrar received a note from Cavaliers coach Mike London, and on the inside (shown in a picture Farrar initially tweeted out) it merely read “YOU” and was underlined. Then signed by London.
UPDATE: Farrar took down the photo and added two tweets for clarification. SB Nation has the original photo.