College Football Notes Dec. 29-Jan. 2

by BoCarter | Posted on Monday, December 29th, 2014

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Are there too many 2014-15 bowl games? With 38 involving 76 of the total of 128 NCAA FBS teams, the answer probably is yes…
But the level of play and amended conference agreements that previously had teams playing 2-3 times over periods of 5-6 years have been a boon to close games (see South Carolina 24, Miami, Fla., 21; USC 45, Nebraska 42; Western Kentucky 49, Central Michigan 48; as examples), and the six CFP-related bowls offer plenty of ntrugue and proving the experts wrong scenarios…Stay tuned.

College Football Notes:
NFF College Hall of Fame Facts
Some notable birthdates in NFF College Hall of Fame annals in the Dec. 30-Jan. 5, 2015, time period are Dec. 30 (1941) Mel Renfro, Houston, Texas; (1946) Barry Alvarez, Langeloth, Pa.; (1966) Dr. Joe Micchia, Sharon, Pa.; (1896) Homer Norton, Birmingham, Ala.; Dec. 31 (1875) Charles Rinehart, Uniontown, N.J.; (1918) Ray Graves, Knoxville, Tenn.; (1928) Hugh McElhenny, Los Angeles, Calif.; (1932) Don James, Massillon, Ohio; Jan. 1, 2015 (1901) Century Milstead, Rock Island, Ill.; (1901) Frank Sundstrom, Middleton, N.Y.; (1925) Jack Cloud, Britton, Okla.; (1927) Doak Walker, Dallas, Texas; (1936) Don Nehlen, Canton, Ohio; (1940) Mike McKeever, Cheyenne, Wyo.; (1962) Pierce Holt, Marlin, Texas; (1967) Derrick Thomas, Miami, Fla.; Jan. 2 (1890) Vince Pazzetti, Wellesley, Mass.; (1912) Tony Blazine, Canton, Ill.; (1930) Bob Williams, Cumberland, Md.; (1959) Darrin Nelson, Sacramento, Calif.; Jan. 4 (1898) Jess Neely, Smyrna, Tenn.; (1898) Jack Harding, Avoca, Pa.; (1925) Johnny Lujack, Connellsville, Pa.; (1929) Darrell Mudra, Omaha, Neb.; Jan. 5 (1891) Hube Wagner, Monaca, Pa.; (1892) John Beckett, Eight Mile, Ore.; (1910) Ed Widseth, Gonvick, Minn.; (1919) Al Blozis, Garfield, N.J.; (1921) Paul Governali, New York City; (1924) Arnold Tucker, Miami, Fla.; (1938) E.J. Holub, Schulenburg, Texas; (1926) Buddy Young, Chicago, Ill.; (1965) Tracy Ham, Gainesville, Fla.

Notable anniversary death dates for Hall of Famers are Dec. 30 (1925) Frank Hinkey, Southern Pines, N.C.; Dec. 31 (1967) Bishop Frank Juhan, Sewanee, Tenn.; (1992) Bill Spears, Harriman, Tenn.; Jan. 1 (1991) Edgar Miller, Annapolis, Md.; Jan. 2 (1977) Dale Van Sickel, Newport Beach, Calif.; (1999) Raymond “Rags” Matthews, Ft. Worth, Texas; Jan. 3 (1969) Buzz Borries, West Orange, Fla.; (2003) Sid Gillman, Carlsbad, Calif.; Jan. 4 (1943) Bill Edwards, New York City; (2000) Tom Fears, Palm Desert, Calif.; (2013) Pete Elliott, Canton, Ohio; Jan 5 (1975) Claude “Monk” Simons, New Orleans, La.

Happy birthdays to NFF College Hall of Fame members Dec. 30 Mel Renfro, Barry Alvarez, Dr. Joe Micchia, Dec. 31 Ray Graves (a spry 96), Jan. 1, 2015 Don Nehlen, Pierce Holt, Jan. 2 Bob Williams, Darrin Nelson, Jan. 4 Darrell Mudra (a spry 85), Jan. 5 Arnold Tucker (a spry 90), E.J. Holub, Tracy Ham…

Southern Miss and Troy have slated a two-game series scheduled for 2016 and ’19…Boise State and Florida State have a two-game set slated for 2019 and ’20…Houston and Kansas will meet in 2019 and ’20…Minnesota-Duluth say No. 3 and Ohio Dominican at No. 4 finished just behind Colorado State-Pueblo and Minnesota State-Mankato NCAA Division II championship participants in the final DII coaches’ poll of the season…The final NAIA poll of the year has been released in celebration of the 59th annual NAIA football championship.

NCAA FCS Subdivision, Division II, Division III and as well as 2014 NAIA football postseason pairings, and the complete brackets with updated results can be found at NCAA.com/football, NCAA.com/FCS and http://www.naia.org/ViewArticle.dbml?DB_OEM_ID=27900&ATCLID=209768278…The 2014 NAIA champion was Southern Oregon, NCAA Division II winner was Colorado State-Pueblo (first NCAA title) and Wisconsin-Whitewater captured the NCAA DIII. The FCS title game will be an All-Missouri Valley Conference menu with first-time entrant Illinois State tackling three-time defending champion North Dakota State on Saturday, Jan. 10, at Frisco, Texas.

LSU fans helped decorate many of the roadways around Nashville, Tenn., with bilIboards prior to the LSU-Notre Dame Franklin Templeton Music City Bowl…Illinois and Louisiana Tech distributed food and met with families with the CitySquare Group in Dallas to assist underserved people in South Dallas before the Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl…A game ticket in mint condition from the 1969 Arkansas-Texas Big Shootout in Fayetteville, Ark., has been uncovered on the worldwide web.

New head coaching appointments in recent days have included Pat Narduzzi at Pittsburgh, Mike Bobo at Colorado State…Florida State head coach Jimbo Fisher has received an eight-year contract extension… Virginia Tech head coach and winningest active NCAA FBS mentor Frank Beamer coached from the press box during Tech’s tussle last Saturday with Cincinnati in last week’s Military Bowl…Boise State head coach Bryan Harsin is in the process of having his long-term contract restructured…North Texas head coach Dan McCarney and longtime sports broadcaster, host and media consultant Scott Murray were featured in ESPN.com’s coverage of post-2014 bowl contests…Former Mississippi State defensive coordinator Geoff Collins accepted that same post at Florida…Michigan State tabbed Harlon Barnett and Mike Tressel as to co-defensive coordinators for the Spartans’ bowl bash vs. Baylor…Baylor head coach Art Briles chose his son Kendal Briles as offensive coordinator for the Goodyear Cotton Bowl against MSU…Former Nebraska standout and longtime Oregon assistant coach Scott Frost has been associated with several recent head coaches’ openings… Oregon State tabbed as new assistant coaches Kalani Sitake, Iliasa Tuaiki, Chad Kauha’aha’a, Derrick Odum, T.J. Woods, and Evan Simon. Sitake and Tuaiki left the Utah coaching staff for Oregon State while five other assistants came with head coach Gary Anderson from the Wisconsin program…Former Utah assistant coach and Wyoming head coach Dave Christensen has accepted a post as an assistant with Texas A&M’s offensive units…Rutgers athletics is providing bowl bonuses for its 2014 coaching staff…Texas Tech is completing interviews for its defensive coordinator opening.

Homesteads: Hometowns of more 2014 college head coaches – North Texas: Dan McCarney, Iowa City, Iowa; Northwestern: Pat Fitzgerald, Orland Park, Ill.; Notre Dame: Brian Kelly, Everett, Mass.; Ohio: Frank Solich, Johnstown, Pa.; Ohio State: Urban Meyer, Toledo, Ohio.

Kansas State director of athletics John Currie joins other Big 12 Conference ADs in seeking tougher non-conference schedules in upcoming years… Popular assistant AD/media relations Jason Baum completed his tenure at Rutgers with his role in New Era Pinstripe Bowl last Friday while fighting a kidney stone…Notre Dame athletics named former UCLA RB Jonathan Franklin as administrator for student welfare and development…Ball State’s longtime athletics equipment manager Tex Ritter is retiring after 29 years.

The Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl will feature a record team payout of $1.6 million in 2014…Central Michigan’s three-lateral touchdown against winning Western Kentucky in the Popeyes Bahamas Bowl brought back memories of the famed 1982 California-Stanford touchdown run into the Stanford band as Cal used rugby-type laterals to score on a kickoff return…Both Illinois and Louisiana Tech programs entered the Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl with 586 all-time wins, and Tech emerged with its 587th all-time triumph last Friday.

Conference USA finished 4-1 in bowls from Dec. 20-26 with team-friendly road trips to Nassau, Bahamas (Western Kentucky). and Honolulu (Rice). The circuit is 10-5 over the last three seasons in postseason play, now is 4-0 in four visits to the Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl and equaled its most wins and top victory percentage for bowls in a single season.

ESPN.com’s Mark Schlabach predicted all 39 bowl winners in a recent tome on that website and was 6-4 through the first 10 games chronologically on the docket…Fox Sports Net is airing an All-Big East Conference lineup of five basketball games on Thursday, Jan. 1.

Western Kentucky QB Brandon Doughty leads NCAA FBS with 49 touchdown passes and 4,830 net yards via the air in 13 contests…Navy junior QB Keenan Reynolds already holds the NCAA FBS career mark for touchdowns with 62 and a full season remaining in 2015…San Diego State RB Donnel Pumphrey entered he bowl season as the No. 4 FBS rusher nationally with 146.3 yard per game…Louisiana Tech OL Mitchell Bell has accepted an invitation to the NFL Players Association Collegiate Bowl, and Bulldogs DB Xavier Woods set a Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl mark with a 69-yard interception return and moved into second place nationally (with a school-record 230 yards) behind Louisville’s Gerod Holliman with 245 INT return yards. Holliman is the 2014 Jim Thorpe Award recipient. Bulldogs’ junior RB Kenneth Dixon has scored a school-record 366 points for Tech, has scored a touchdown in a school-most 13 consecutive skirmishes and tied his own LT record for touchdowns in a season with 28 along with the 2012 outing…Former UAB safety Ja’Kii Moore has transferred to North Texas with immediate eligibility for 2015…Arizona State WR Jaelen String will enter the NFL draft in spring ’15.

NFF Hall of Fame player and Middle East Air Force veteran Chad Hennings of Air Force was featured on NBC Television about his Dallas-Fort Worth Rubicon Real Estate holdings and ex-college football student-athletes he has hired along with his two recent books…NFF College Hall of Fame coach Lou Holtz attended his first Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl last Friday to watch his son Skip Holtz’s Louisiana Tech squad take on Illinois.

The total share for 2014-15 bowl games for the 10 FBS conferences is projected to exceed $500 million…Forbes magazine tabbed Texas’ 2014 squad as the most valuable team in college football with an estimated worth of $131 million – $9 million more than runnerup Notre Dame…Ole Miss and Mississippi State programs were featured in a financial report on their impact of both being rated among the Top 12 nationally at season’s end for the first time in school history.

The IFRA has tabulated (and still counting) numerous 2014 teams and where they rank in all-time scoring standings in all college divisions. They are 1. Mount Union (Ohio), 878 points; 13. Morningside (Iowa), 721; t-24. Southern Oregon, 685; and Wesley (Conn.), 685; t-59. Texas A&M-Commerce, 649; 84. Mary Hardin-Baylor, 629; 88. John Carroll, 626.

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