College Football Notes Feb. 14-20, 2016

by BoCarter | Posted on Tuesday, February 16th, 2016

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College Football Notes

By Bo Carter

Johnny Lattner, a 1979 College Football Hall of Fame inductee from Notre Dame and the 1953 Heisman Trophy recipient, passed away Feb. 12. Born Oct. 24, 1932, he was 83. Lattner, a 6-1, 190-pound halfback at Notre Dame from 1951-53, can claim more offensive and defensive records than anyone else during his career. In 1951, his sophomore year, he saved the Irish from defeat at the hands of Iowa. Notre Dame trailed, 20-13, with less than a minute and a half to go. It was fourth-and-ten on Notre Dame’s 22-yard line, but instead of punting, Lattner threw his first college pass, a 23-yard completion, against the wishes of Hall of Fame Coach Frank Leahy. With 45 seconds left, Lattner raced 55 yards to the goal line, scoring the touchdown that helped Notre Dame to a 20-20 tie. In a 28-21 victory against Oklahoma during his senior season, Lattner carried the ball 24 times for a 4.1 rushing average, caught two passes for 42 yards and intercepted a pass. He also punted nine times that afternoon, compiling a 38-yard average. After the game he modestly stated, “It was everybody’s game; the whole team made it possible.” As a senior, Lattner played 421 of a possible 600 minutes. He scored nine touchdowns, accounted for 855 yards in rushing and catching, intercepted four passes, accounted for 424 yards in kick returns, and punted for a 35-yard average. His accomplishments earned him the 1953 Heisman Trophy and the Maxwell Award for a second consecutive year. He would also twice claim All-America honors. For additional information, please access:

NFF College Hall of Fame Facts

Some notable birthdates in NFF College Hall of Fame annals in the Feb. 16-22 time period are Feb. 16 (1931) Dick Modzelewski, West Natrona, Pa.; (1964) Teel Bruner, London, Ky.; Feb. 17 (1872) Pat O’Dea, Melbourne, Australia; (1892) Bob Neyland, Greenville, Texas; (1905) Andy Oberlander, Chelsea, Mass.; (1920) Jackie Hunt, Huntington, W.Va.; (1936) Jim Brown, St. Simons Island, Ga.; (1938) Jim Christopherson, Wadena, Minn.; Feb. 18 (1895) George Gipp, Laurium, Mich.; (1947) Leroy Keyes, Newport News, Va.; (1962) Gary Reasons, Crowley, Texas; (1963) Chuck Long, Norman, Okla.; Feb. 19 (1918) Forest Evashevski, Detroit, Mich.; Feb. 21 (1921) Bob Dove, Youngstown, Ohio; (1899) Matty Bell, Fort Worth, Texas; (1864) George Woodruff, Dimmock, Pa.; (1886) Bill Hollenbeck, Blueball, Pa.; (1915) Mickey Kobrosky, Springfield, Mass.

Notable anniversary death dates for Hall of Famers are Feb. 17 (2009) Brad Van Pelt, Owosso, Mich.; Feb. 18 (1994) Jake Gaither, Tallahassee, Fla.; Feb. 19 (2011) Ollie Matson, Los Angeles, Calif.;

Feb. 20 (1912) Francis Wistert, Chicago, Ill.; Feb. 22 (1998) Warren Woodson, Dallas, Texas.

Happy birthdays to NFF College Hall of Fame members Feb. 16 Dick Modzelewski (a spry 85), Teel Bruner, Feb. 17 Jim Brown (a spry 80), Jim Christopherson, Feb. 18 Leroy Keyes, Gary Reasons, Chuck Long…

More College Football Notes

Rice and Texas have slated a three-game series in 2019, ’21 and ’23…Florida and Miami (Fla.) could return to their regular rivalry as soon as 2019. The schools last met in football in 2013…Washington State has made two date changes to its 2017 schedule with the Nevada-WSU game moved to Sept. 23 and the Montana State-WSU on Sept. 2 (previously set for Sept. 16, 2017)…Old Dominion and Virginia will meet three times in 2018, ’20 and ’22.

The Tim Tebow Foundation of the 2009 NFF William V. Campbell Award winner from Florida is sponsoring Your Night to Shine prom nights for special needs’ youngsters at 200-plus high schools and churches in the United States and eight countries total with thousands of volunteers and families already participating. This is second year of Your Night to Shine during the sixth year of the Tebow Foundation…Notre Dame WR Corey Robinson (the son of Navy and NBA basketball legend David Robinson) has been named student government president for the 2016-17 academic year. Corey Robinson has helped organize Notre Dame and area schools’ used equipment to underserved youngsters in South Bend, Ind…Eastern Michigan athletics is commemorating the 100-year anniversary of the first high school state tournament in basketball history in 1916…Boise State students continue to get multiple browses on a preseason photo at Albertsons Stadium where they formed a large “B” covering some 40 yards of the football field.

Air Force head coach Troy Calhoun had his contract extended through the 2020 season…TCU head coach Gary Patterson underwent knee replacement surgery and has lost 30 pounds during the rehab process…Indiana head coach Kevin Wilson may have his complete contract extension and financial terms released publicly in coming days…Arizona is in the process of hiring a new recruiting coordinator…Arizona State named former Nebraska, Oklahoma and Texas assistant coach Jay Norvell as passing game coordinator/receivers coach…Arkansas is reported to be bringing in Reggie Mitchell as running backs coach…Penn State has continued to include extensive background checks in the staffing of its assistant football coaching slots…San Diego State defensive line coach Osia Lewis accepted the same assignment at Vanderbilt for 2016…South Alabama named Kevin Sigler named cornerbacks coach…Southern Mississippi selected Shannon Dawson as offensive coordinator; Jack Wright named as offensive line coach and Derek Nicholson as a new assistant…New Tennessee tight ends coach Larry Scott had his contract finalized…Former Ole Miss and Texas defensive backs coach Chris Vaughn is seeking a new college or NFL coaching position after leaving UT…Utah football has new staff assignments for Pablo Cano, Robert Blechen and Alema Fitisemanu prior to 2016 spring drills…Arkansas State added assistant coaches Norval MacKenzie and Allen Rudolph to the football staff…Duke named Ben Albert assistant head coach defensive line coach…Former Houston head coach Tony Levine is 2016 assistant head coach at Western Kentucky…Kansas added Texas high school coach Jeff Jordan to the staff…Oregon quarterback coach David Yost has received a two-year contract with $350,000 in remuneration…San Jose State named Ron English defensive coordinator and added three defensive assistants to its 2016 gridiron staff…Stanford defensive line coach Randy Hart has retired…Former Wisconsin defensive backs coach Daronte’ Jones has accepted a post in the NFL…California hired Garrett Chachere as coach of the running backs and Art Kaufman as linebackers coach…Former Colorado standout Darian Hagan is returning to Boulder to coach UC running backs…2015 Southern Miss defensive coordinator David Duggan is seeking a position at another school or professional team…Former Texas RB Anthony Johnson will be back in campus as 2016 Longhorns’ running backs coach…Arkansas offensive coordinator Dan Enos had his contract extended through 2019 with new financial incentives…Auburn named Austin Tucker to its 2016 coaching staff…The Citadel chose Blake Harrell as defensive coordinator…LSU named Jabbar Juluke of Texas Tech running backs coach while wide receivers coach Tony Ball will not return for the 2016 season. Tigers’ defensive analyst Chevis Jackson has accepted a defensive coaching post at Ball State…The Southeastern Conference is inquiring about the status of a trip to Florida by Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh and selected student-athletes…Ole Miss assistant football recruiting director Branden Wenzel has finished his tenure in Oxford, Miss….Mississippi State made Brad Peterson the new director of player personnel…In South Carolina Republican presidential candidate and Ohio Gov. John Kasich mentioned NFF College Football Hall of Fame player Steve Spurrier of Florida (and head coach at Duke, UF and South Carolina) as a possible 2016 vice presidential running mate…Former Louisiana Tech safeties coach Karl Scott is coming to Texas Tech as cornerbacks coach.

Homesteads: Hometowns of more 2016 college head coaches – Pennsylvania: Ray Priore, Albany, N.Y.; Penn State: James Franklin, Langhorne, Pa.; Pittsburgh: Pat Narduzzi, New Haven, Conn.; Portland State: Bruce Barnum, Vancouver, Wash.; Prairie View A&M: Willie Simmons, Tallahassee, Fla.

Purdue director of athletics Morgan Burke will retire in July 2017 after 24 years at the helm in West Lafayette, Ind….Illinois hopes to have its new AD in place by the end of February. Three strong candidates, including Kansas deputy assistant AD Kelly Mehrtens, are no longer on the finalists’ board while at least four individuals still are in the running…Minnesota athletics is hoping its AD research firm completes its surveys soon for the upcoming hire. Interim AD Beth Goetz is among the candidates under consideration for the position…Carli Todd has been to the Texas Longhorn media relations office staff.

Super Bowl L had a league-high 23 alumni of Southeastern Conference schools and 17 from Big Ten schools. There were nine players from California and eight from the state of Texas.

The American Athletic Conference revealed its full 2016 schedule with the circuit opener on Sept. 10 when Connecticut travels to Navy. Other key non-conferences clashes are Brigham Young at Cincinnati, Virginia at Connecticut, East Carolina at Virginia Tech, Oklahoma vs. Houston (at Houston’s NRG Stadium), and Memphis at Ole Miss…Big Sky Conference commissioner Doug Fullerton is retiring from his post June 30, 2016.

Bleacher Report’s Top 20 defensive players returning for 2016 NCAA FBS include the likes of Ohio State LB Raekwon McMillan, safety Budda Baker of Washington, LB Malik Jefferson of Texas, LB Ben Boulware of Clemson, Ole Miss DE Marquis Haynes, and Florida State DE Derwin James…Houston QB transfer Kyle Allen was featured in a recent story about major college transfers and the impact on certain programs on both ends of the move…Texas Class 6A 2015 Player of the Year Sam Ehlinger of Austin Westlake HS has committed verbally to Texas to sign in February 2017.

Washington State’s Bob Robertson will work his 50th season behind the radio mike for WSU football and 45th in succession in 2016. He was WSU’s play-by-play broadcaster from 1964-68 and again from 1972-2016…American Sports Network has added record numbers of Twitter followers in recent weeks…The Meltwater Group is doing individual evaluations of the impact of college athletics media relations and other client PR areas…Rutgers athletics is making progress toward the $100 million goal for the RU Facilities Fund…Old Dominion continues to study the area where current stadium Forman Field is located as a probable tract for its new football facility…Kentucky football has initiated a parking donation fee for certain lots near the stadium while season and individual game ticket prices will remain the same as 2015.

All-Southeastern Conference and longtime head coach Bill Curry of Georgia Tech was featured in a special essay about racial and football equality on the NFF YouTube site last week… Of note, out of the 977 players and 211 coaches who are in the College Football Hall of Fame, no members were born or deceased on June 5, July 19, Aug. 11, Aug. 13, Oct. 21, or Oct. 28…Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards is working with state universities and athletics departments to try and alleviate some funding challenges caused by the recent severe slide in oil prices…Texas high school coaching legends Steve Lineweaver at Mansfield (Texas) HS and Terry Cron at Mansfield Summit HS have been named as interim head coaches to prepare those schools for new staffs and spring workouts…Attendance for the last two seasons of group high school football championships at Arlington’s AT&T Stadium in 2013 and Houston’s NRG Stadium in 2014 topped 410,000 in composite tickets sold.

Among the major changes proposed for 2016 by the NCAA football rules committee are allowing replay officials to make targeting calls after studying tapes, letting coaches and student-athletes use computer tablets on the sidelines, additional replay guidelines in several areas, and strong interpretation of the illegal player downfield penalty…The Texas Sports Writers Association is finalizing release of its six classification All-State teams under the guidance of Robert Cessna of the Bryan-College Station Eagle newspaper.

2016-17 College Football Playoff Bowl Schedule
(All Games Televised by ESPN, All Times TBD)
Dec. 31 – Chick Fil-A Peach Bowl, Atlanta, Ga., Georgia Dome (one semifinal will be afternoon and the other will feature a primetime kickoff TBD)
Dec. 31 – Fiesta Bowl, Glendale, Ariz., University of Phoenix Stadium
Monday, Jan. 9, 2017 – CFP National Championship, Tampa, Fla., Raymond James Stadium, primetime kickoff TBD


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