Patriots rally for 27-13 win over Cardinals, Murray hurt
Mac Jones threw for 235 yards, Raekwon McMillan had a crucial fumble return for a touchdown and the New England Patriots earned a 27-13 win on Monday night over the Arizona Cardinals, who lost starting quarterback Kyler Murray in the first quarter to a potentially serious knee injury.
Newton believes COVID testing mishap contributed to release
Former Patriots quarterback Cam Newton says he was caught by surprise by his release by New England and believes his weeklong absence near the end of training camp due to a mishap related to COVID-19 testing protocols contributed to coach Bill Belichick’s decision.
Jones, Smith, Harris reconnect at Alabama's pro day No. 2
Patrick Surtain II and Mac Jones had the spotlight at Alabama's Pro Day, Tuesday, March 23, 2021. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara, File)DeVonta Smith was there for quarterback Mac Jones once again, this time it was at Alabama's latest pro day. “He didn't have to do that,” Jones told the SEC Network, which aired the pro day. '”Jones showcased his arm strength a week after participating in the Crimson Tide's first pro day. “Mac was just on me like, ‘Bro, come catch, come catch, come catch,’” Smith told the network.
Playmakers wanted: Defending champ Alabama replacing stars
Saban and Alabama opened spring practice Friday, March 19, 2021l with an immediate goal. For now, they need to find replacements for three of college football's top offensive weapons. Patterson, File)Nick Saban and Alabama opened spring practice Friday with an immediate goal. He also didn't get a spring practice last year because of the pandemic. The Crimson Tide holds its spring game on April 17 and opens the regular season against Miami on Sept. 4 in Atlanta.
Despite no combine, NFL releases list of who merited invites
The last NFL event not impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic was the 2020 combine in Indianapolis. A year later, with the 2021 combine canceled, the league has released a list of players who would have merited invitations. (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File)The last NFL event not impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic was the 2020 combine in Indianapolis. A year later, with the 2021 combine canceled, the league has released a list of players who would have merited invitations. Cornerbacks got the most invitations with 44, including all-Americans Shaun Wade of Ohio State, and Patrick Surtain of national champion Alabama.
Alabama follows up title by finalizing star-studded class
The recruiting class that Alabama finalized Wednesday has the highest rating in the history of the 247Sports Composite team rankings, which go back to 2010. Steve Wilfong, the director of recruiting for 247Sports, notes this celebrated Alabama class arrives as most of the Tide’s decorated 2017 class departs. Ad“You’re replacing one of the best recruiting classes ever for what they accomplished with maybe the best recruiting class on paper coming in,” Wiltfong said. While plenty of SEC teams joined Alabama in signing impressive classes, Ohio State stood out from its Big Ten foes. All three were quarterbacks, with Bryce Young enrolling at Alabama, DJ Uiagalelei selecting Clemson and CJ Stroud selecting Ohio State.
Franks-to-Yeboah TD seals National's 27-24 Senior Bowl win
National Team running back Michael Carter of North Carolina (7) is tackled by American Team linebacker Jabril Cox of LSU (19) and American Team defensive lineman Chauncey Golston of Iowa (90) during the NCAA college football Senior Bowl in Mobile, Ala, Saturday, Jan. 30, 2021. Fitzpatrick had six catches for 90 yards in the showcase game for senior and graduate NFL prospects. Jamie Newman then completed a 10-yard touchdown pass to Trevon Grimes with 49 seconds left for the American team. AdJamie Newman then completed a 10-yard touchdown pass to Trevon Grimes with 49 seconds left for the American team. The American team was without two of national champion Alabama’s biggest offensive weapons.
Alabama QB Mac Jones heads into Senior Bowl on gimpy ankle
The next game he plays is for his NFL draft stock, provided the Alabama quarterback's gimpy left ankle is good to go. Senior Bowl executive director Jim Nagy said the plan is for Jones to dress out and see how his ankle feels. “Just being in that room, I already learned so much about NFL football,” he said. Mond started 44 games for the Aggies, Ehlinger logged 43 starts for the Longhorns,Mond led the Aggies into College Football Playoffs contention in his final season. I just wanted to come and kind of learn more about NFL football and learn a new playbook, which I thought I did a good job with.
NFL draft early entry list has 3 national title-winning QBs
Those 128 players, plus three more who inquired about their draft status but didn't need special eligibility, were on the NFL's official list released Friday as available to be drafted after giving up their remaining college eligibility. The 30 players with college eligibility remaining after completing their degree requirements had to notify the NFL of their intentions for the draft. As for those 98 players granted special eligibility without yet finishing their degrees, that was one fewer than last year and the lowest total since 95 in 2017. Players less than four years removed from high school who have not completed a degree need to be granted special entry to the draft by the NFL. Southern California has the most players leaving early for NFL draft eligibility with six.
Bama hires ex-Texans coach O'Brien as offensive coordinator
FILE - In this Aug. 21, 2020, file photo, Houston Texans coach Bill O'Brien watches during an NFL football training camp in Houston. Alabama has hired former Texans coach O'Brien as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip, File)TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – National champion Alabama has hired former Houston Texans head coach Bill O'Brien as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. O'Brien also served as offensive coordinator for the Nittany Lions and won national coach of the year honors after going 8-4 in 2012. A 28-year coaching veteran and former Brown defensive player, O'Brien was also offensive coordinator at Duke.
New Texas coach Sarkisian defends "The Eyes of Texas"
(AP Photo/Vasha Hunt, File)AUSTIN, Texas – Fresh off a national title with Alabama, Steve Sarkisian plans big changes to Texas' football program. Sarkisian said that while discussion about "The Eyes of Texas "and other issues are welcome, “'The Eyes of Texas' is our school song. Texas, without a conference championship since 2009, is itching to see if Sarkisian can produce similar results in Austin. Texas expects quick results from Sarkisian, recent winner of the Broyles Award given to college football’s top assistant coach. Asked about scheduling A&M again, Sarkisian said “I would love to play that game.”Sarkisian is Texas’ fourth head coach since 2009.
Perfect Alabama finishes No. 1 in AP Top 25 for 12th time
(AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. – Alabama finished the season No. 1 in the AP Top 25 for the 12th time, extending its record by completing the program’s first perfect season since 2009. With 12 AP titles overall — Paul “Bear” Bryant was coach for five and Gene Stallings for one — Alabama has four more than Notre Dame, in second place with eight. The Big 12 finished with a perfect record in five bowl games. ___Follow Ralph D. Russo at https://twitter.com/ralphDrussoAP and listen at https://westwoodonepodcasts.com/pods/ap-top-25-college-football-podcast/___More AP college football: https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-college-football-poll and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25___This story has been updated to correct the number of national titles for Alabama to 12, not.
Unstoppable Tide: Alabama routs Ohio St for national title
1 Alabama won the College Football Playoff national championship game 52-24 against No. 7 overall, breaking a tie with Alabama great Paul “Bear” Bryant for the most by a major college coach. “To me this is the ultimate team,” Saban said. “To me this team accomplished more than almost any team," Saban said. “Heaven's knows what he would have done if he played the whole game,” Saban said.
Bama's Waddle back practicing, status for title game unclear
Now the question is will he be able to play in the title game Monday night against Ohio State? “I think you absolutely have to prepare as if he's going to play,” Ohio State defensive coordinator Kerry Coombs said. Ohio State President Kristina M. Johnson posted photos on Twitter showing her visiting with coach Ryan Day and the team in the school's indoor practice facility. WEST COAST EXPORTSThe West Coast will be well represented in the national championship game among the players, if not the football programs themselves. Alabama All-America tailback Najee Harris, Ohio State wide receiver Chris Olave and Buckeyes All-America guard Wyatt Davis are all from California.
Alabama's Smith becomes 1st WR to win Heisman in 29 years
Smith became the first wide receiver to win the Heisman Trophy in 29 seasons Tuesday night, breaking the monopoly quarterbacks have had on the award by beating out three of them. “Just to be one of the very few that played receiver to win the Heisman, it means a lot to me,” Smith said. Smith is the third Alabama player to win the Heisman, all since 2009. 1 receiver, Smith shined. ___Follow Ralph D. Russo at https://twitter.com/ralphDrussoAP and listen at https://westwoodonepodcasts.com/pods/ap-top-25-college-football-podcast/___More AP college football: https://apnews.com/Collegefootball and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25
Alabama, Ohio State travel different paths to title game
Ohio State won 49-28. “This team, this program, we persevered through so much,” Ohio State running back Trey Sermon said Monday. In addition to Sarkisian's imminent departure, Alabama has to take care of some Heisman Trophy business while preparing for the matchup with Ohio State. Ohio State (7-0) won that meeting en route to the national title. OHIO STATEOverview: Like many teams, Ohio State faced major obstacles during the pandemic.
Alabama in record 5th CFP title game vs 1st champ Ohio State
Ohio State is back for the first time since winning the inaugural title in the CFP era. After the SEC champion Crimson Tide rolled past Notre Dame 31-14 in a Rose Bowl played deep in the heart of Texas, the No. 3 Buckeyes of the Big Ten beat Clemson 49-28 in the other CFP semifinal at the Sugar Bowl on Friday night. The Tigers were trying, like Alabama, to get to the title game for the fifth time in the seven seasons of the four-team playoff. Alabama was the top seed in the first four-team playoff, but Ohio State beat the Tide 42-35 in the semifinal Sugar Bowl.
Clemson star QB Lawrence sputters in Superdome again
And with that, Lawrence’s bid to finish an extraordinary college football career with his second national championship in three seasons slipped away. 2 Clemson in the College Football Playoff semifinal at the Sugar Bowl on Friday night. “Obviously they kicked our butt tonight," Lawrence said. Lawrence is one of four finalists, along with Alabama QB Mac Jones, Crimson Tide receiver Davonta Smith and Florida QB Kyle Trask. Still, he'll be remembered as one of the faces of college football — on the field and off — during a tumultuous junior year.
Roll Tide! No. 1 Alabama beats Notre Dame 31-14 in Rose Bowl
(AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth)ARLINGTON, Texas – A truly untraditional Rose Bowl setting, a very common result for Alabama in the College Football Playoff. 4 Notre Dame in a CFP semifinal Rose Bowl played inside about 1,400 miles from Pasadena, California. “I don't think there’s anything quite like the Rose Bowl, the tradition, the setting, the mountains. 3 Ohio State, which beat Clemson 49-28 in the other CFP semifinal at the Sugar Bowl on Friday night. PERFECT AT COWS HOMEAlabama is 5-0 at AT&T Stadium, with a pair of convincing CFP semifinal wins there.
Tide's DeVonta Smith the 1st WR to win AP Player of the Year
DeVonta Smith is The Associated Press college football player of the year, becoming the first wide receiver to win the award since it was established in 1998, Tuesday, Dec. 29, 2020. Jones received nine first-place votes and 67 points as he and Smith became the first teammates to finish 1-2 in the voting for AP player of the year. Smith is also the first Alabama player to win the award. Derrick Henry won the 2015 Heisman for the Tide, but Stanford's Christian McCaffrey was AP player of the year. ___Follow Ralph D. Russo at https://twitter.com/ralphDrussoAP and listen at https://westwoodonepodcasts.com/pods/ap-top-25-college-football-podcast/___More AP college football: https://apnews.com/Collegefootball and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25
Alabama's Jones, Smith, Harris lead 6 Tide AP All-Americans
Lawrence, the likely first pick in the next NFL draft, made AP All-America for the first time in his career. ___The 2020 AP All-America team:FIRST TEAMOffenseQuarterback — Mac Jones, junior, Alabama. Running backs — Najee Harris, senior, Alabama; Breece Hall, sophomore, Iowa State. Guards — Ben Cleveland, senior, Georgia; Tommy Kraemer, senior, Notre Dame. Safeties — Kyle Hamilton, sophomore, Notre Dame; Tykee Smith, sophomore, West Virginia.
Heisman finalists: Tide teammates plus Lawrence and Trask
(AP Photo/Brian Blanco, File)Alabama teammates Mac Jones and DeVonta Smith along with Clemson’s Trevor Lawrence and Florida’s Kyle Trask have been named finalists for the Heisman Trophy. Jones and Smith are the eighth set of teammates to be finalists together since the tradition started in 1982. The Crimson Tide is the second team to have three players in the top five in Heisman voting. In 1946, Army running back Glenn Davis won the Heisman, fellow running back Doc Blanchard finished fourth and quarterback Arnold Tucker was fifth. Iowa State running back Breece Hall was sixth this year, followed by Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields, BYU quarterback Zach Wilson, Notre Dame quarterback Ian Book and Florida tight end Kyle Pitts.
Harris scores 5 TDs, No. 1 Bama escapes No. 11 Florida 52-46
11 Florida in a 52-46 shootout for the Southeastern Conference championship Saturday night. “The resiliency this team has shown this season to win 11 games is pretty phenomenal.”After falling behind 35-17 by halftime, Florida (8-3, No. Alabama had won every game in the pandemic-affected season by at least 15 points until Florida gave the Tide a scare. Florida: The Gators might’ve pulled off the upset if not for some crucial mistakes in the first half. But Florida also had two silly penalties on apparent third-down stops, extending a pair of drives that turned into touchdowns.
Smith, Pitts are the real stars of SEC's Alabama, Florida
Alabama receiver DeVonta Smith and Florida tight end Kyle Pitts are the real stars of the leagues most potent offenses. Alabama receiver DeVonta Smith and Florida tight end Kyle Pitts are the real stars of the league’s most potent offenses. “He’s great at the point of attack.”Added Smith: “Pitts, he just makes unbelievable plays.”Pitts was in the middle of a cautious and costly decision last week. Pitts is a lock for the Mackey Award given annually to college football’s top tight end. But anyone who has watched even a little bit of Alabama and Florida this season knows who the real stars are.
Smith's TD return sparks No. 1 Tide's 52-3 tour of Arkansas
Alabama punt returner DeVonta Smith (6) returns a punt for a touchdown against Arkansas during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Dec. 12, 2020, in Fayetteville, Ark. – DeVonta Smith returned a punt 84 yards for a touchdown as No. 1 Alabama scored 28 points in a span of 11 minutes in the first half and rolled past Arkansas 52-3 on Saturday. Mac Jones, whose day was finished in the third quarter, threw for 208 yards on 24 of 29 passing for Alabama. Alabama: Another trip to Atlanta for the SEC title game, the Tide's third in five years.
Jones bolsters Heisman case; No. 1 Alabama beats LSU 55-17
1 Alabama used a slew of explosive plays to run away from LSU 55-17 on Saturday night. Jones threw three of his touchdown passes to Louisiana native DeVonta Smith, who went to the same high school as Louisiana Gov. Smith's first two touchdowns went for 65 and 61 yards to cap three-play, 75-yard drives for Alabama (9-0, 9-0 SEC). Each score pulled LSU as close as two touchdowns, but the Tide answered each with the two deep connections between Jones and Smith. LSU: Visits sixth-ranked Florida in a game rescheduled from Oct. 17 because of a COVID-19 outbreak affecting the Gators.
Week 14: Ohio State returns and BYU-Coastal square off
Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields throws a pass against Indiana during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Nov. 21, 2020, in Columbus, Ohio. 3 Ohio State is playing as much as who will be play playing for the Buckeyes this weekend. Ohio State seems to be on track to play at Michigan State on Saturday after a spike in COVID-19 cases in the program forced a cancellation of last week's road trip to Illinois. If Ohio State has one more game canceled it would be unable to meet the Big Ten's minimum game played to be eligible for the conference title game. UNDER THE RADARNebraska at PurdueNeither team is in the Big West race, but the interesting thing is the Boilermakers (2-3) have won two straight against the Cornhuskers (1-4).
College Football Picks: UGA vs. 'Bama and BYU's tough test
Alabama quarterback Mac Jones (10) hands off to running back Najee Harris (22) during the second half of the team's NCAA college football game against Mississippi in Oxford, Miss., Saturday, Oct. 10, 2020. Alabama won 63-48. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)
College Football Picks: UGA vs. 'Bama and BYU's tough test
Alabama won 63-48. 2 Alabama in a game that could very well be first of three meetings between the SEC superpowers. A conference title rematch in Atlanta would surprise no one and another meeting in the College Football Playoff would hardly be shocking. UCF (minus 3 1/2) at Memphis — @alanwooten19Knights have won 13 straight against the Tigers; average score in the last three: 50-42 ... UCF 45-44. ___Follow Ralph D. Russo at https://twitter.com/ralphDrussoAP and listen at https://westwoodonepodcasts.com/pods/ap-top-25-college-football-podcast/___More AP college football: https://apnews.com/Collegefootball and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25
Jones throws deep, No. 2 Alabama tops No. 13 Texas A&M 52-24
Briefly threatened early, Jones and the Crimson Tide (2-0) flexed their considerable big-play muscle in the passing game to put away the Aggies (1-1). “Our guys stayed the course and kept competing in the game,” Alabama coach Nick Saban said. “We won, so it's a good game,” Jones said, when asked if it was his best performance. Smith, a converted receiver, emerged as another needed threat in the passing game. Alabama: Any questions about production of the Tide's passing game after Tua Tagovailoa, Jerry Jeudy and Henry Ruggs III have been answered.
Roll redemption: No. 3 Alabama aims to restore dominance
3 Crimson Tide received that programs equivalent of a humbling last season, if an 11-2 record can qualify as such. Alabama failed to make the College Football Playoffs for the first time thanks largely to a 48-45, regular season-ending loss to rival Auburn. Making matters worse, that followed a 2018 season that ended with national championship game thrashing at the hands of Clemson. Speculation abounded that highly recruited freshman Bryce Young might push Jones for the starting job before COVID-19 canceled spring practice. Harris emerged as Alabamas latest star runner last season, gaining 1,224 yards and scoring 20 combined touchdowns rushing and receiving.