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Georgia Bulldogs 2017 Football Schedule

Date Opponent / Event Location Time / Result TV Countdown
09/02/17 vs. Appalachian State Athens, Ga. TBA    
09/09/17 at Notre Dame South Bend, Ind. 7:30 p.m. ET NBC  
09/16/17 vs. Samford Athens, Ga. TBA    
09/23/17 vs. Mississippi State * Athens, Ga. TBA    
09/30/17 at Tennessee * Knoxville, Tenn. TBA    
10/07/17 at Vanderbilt * Nashville, Tenn. TBA    
10/14/17 vs. Missouri * Athens, Ga. TBA    
10/28/17 vs. Florida * Jacksonville, Fla. TBA    
11/04/17 vs. South Carolina * Athens, Ga. TBA    
11/11/17 at Auburn * Auburn, Ala. TBA    
11/18/17 vs. Kentucky * Athens, Ga. TBA    
11/25/17 at Georgia Tech Atlanta, Ga. TBA    
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Under Armour All-American Tommy Brown[1] has committed to the Crimson Tide[2], becoming Alabama's first verbal along the offensive line in the 2018 class. Read below to see why Brown could quickly contribute in Tuscaloosa:

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. -- Tennessee[1] defensive coordinator Bob Shoop doesn't expect a lawsuit filed against him by his former employer to be a distraction as the Volunteers' defense attempts to bounce back from a disappointing season.

Penn State sued Shoop for breach of contract over the circumstances of his January 2016 departure. Shoop has filed a counterclaim indicating he was forced out rather than leaving Penn State on his own.

"It's not a distraction at all," Shoop said. "The only time it's any distraction is when you guys bring it up."

The lawsuit filed by Penn State earlier this year says Shoop was required to pay the university half his base salary for the remaining term of his contract if he decided to leave early. Shoop was Penn State defensive coordinator from 2014-15 before leaving for Tennessee .

According to the complaint, Shoop wouldn't have to pay the buyout only if he received a head coaching job within one year of his exit date. Penn State is seeking nearly $900,000 from him.

In a counterclaim filed last month, Shoop's lawyers said he was forced out of Penn State after encountering "intolerable" working conditions. The counterclaim said Shoop "was constructively discharged/terminated from, or forced or compelled to leave" Penn State.

Shoop declined to go into detail on the lawsuit Friday during a press conference to preview preseason practice, which begins July 29.

"I appreciate the fact that a lot of you are interested in the situation with regard to me and Penn State," Shoop said. "I can't comment on it at this time. I promise you it's just a matter of a contract. We have a number that we feel we owe them and they have a number that they feel we owe them, and people who know a lot more about this stuff than I do are handling it. ... It's really nothing that I even think about it on a daily basis unless I read about it in the paper or you guys tell me about it or call me about it."

The lawsuit represents another obstacle for Shoop, who already has his hands full trying to rebuild the Vols' defense. Tennessee went 9-4 last season but allowed 37.1 points per game in its final seven matchups against Football Bowl Subdivision opponents.

Shoop has the Vols' support -- on and off the field.

Tennessee head coach Butch Jones said at Southeastern Conference Media Days earlier this month that he has "no concerns whatsoever" about Shoop in the wake of this lawsuit.

Senior safety Todd Kelly Jr[2]. says he believes Shoop is more comfortable now that he's had a year to get used to being with a new program.

"I think he's confident," Kelly said. "I think he's the man for the plan, no question."

Shoop's defenses had ranked among the nation's top 25 programs in yards allowed each of the five years before his arrival at Tennessee, but the Volunteers didn't come close to reaching that benchmark last year. Tennessee ranked 95th in total defense and tied for 68th in scoring defense.

"I've been coaching a long time," Shoop said. "I don't think I've seen a group of guys with a bigger chip on their shoulder and more determined."

Tennessee now must replace Philadelphia Eagles first-round draft pick Derek Barnett -- the school's all-time sack leader -- as well as Pittsburgh Steelers third-round pick Cam Sutton and Detroit Lions fourth-round selection Jalen Reeves-Maybin.

Injuries limited Sutton to seven games and Reeves-Maybin to four games last season. The extended absences of Sutton and Reeves-Maybin exemplified the way injuries hampered Shoop's defense throughout the 2016 campaign.

Shoop sees plenty of cause for optimism.

He says defensive end Jonathan Kongbo[3] is "on a mission" one year after the heralded junior-college transfer failed to deliver any sacks. He praises the senior leadership of defensive tackle Kendal Vickers[4]. He emphasizes the importance of linebacker Darrin Kirkland Jr[5].

Shoop's mission is to build a stronger and deeper defense that can withstand any injuries that might arise this fall.

"The lessons I learned personally is you can never have enough guys," Shoop said. "We've got to continue to develop depth.... because you never know. This league is such a physical league, and there's so much attrition."

Friday, 21 July 2017 14:29

Whom should Ole Miss hire to replace Hugh Freeze?

Written by

Hotty toddy, gosh almighty, who the hell are we? Ole Miss is asking itself the question after coach Hugh Freeze's stunning resignation Thursday after school officials found a "pattern" of personal conduct issues that included phone calls to a number associated with a female escort service.

Freeze went 39-25 at Ole Miss and guided the Rebels to a Sugar Bowl championship, two victories over Alabama when the Tide were ranked in the top three and several decorated recruiting classes. He also leaves the program in a perilous spot, as Ole Miss self-imposed a postseason ban this season, already is operating with self-imposed scholarship reductions and still faces the outcome of an NCAA investigation that traces back to 2012.

Ole Miss will get through the season with Matt Luke, the team's co-offensive coordinator and line coach promoted Thursday to interim head coach, before pursuing Freeze's permanent successor. It will be no ordinary search, given the timing and the uncertainty around the program.

Thankfully, ESPN.com's search firm is always working, and it convened for a surprise midsummer brainstorming session. Andrea Adelson and Edward Aschoff (an Oxford, Mississippi, native) joined me to break down the Ole Miss job, the strategy for the search and the candidates the school should pursue.

CONWAY, S.C. -- Coastal Carolina[1] coach Joe Moglia will miss the Sun Belt Conference's yearly football gathering after having a precautionary medical procedure.

Doctors found a precancerous nodule on his trachea that they wanted to remove. The 68-year-old Moglia is recovering from the operation. Athletic spokesman Mike Cawood said Friday in an email to The Associated Press that Moglia is fine and just wanted to have the surgery done before the season began.

Moglia isn't expected to miss any time once the team begins camp next month. He's beginning his sixth season with the Chants, who are playing their first season in the Sun Belt.

Coastal Carolina associate head coach Jamey Chadwell will fill in for Moglia at the Sun Belt gathering that starts Sunday.

Shortly after the resignation of football coach Hugh Freeze, the Ole Miss Rebels[1] lost a commitment from 2019 prospect Bobby Wolfe[2].

Wolfe, a cornerback from Houston, confirmed his decommitment to ESPN on Thursday night.

The fallout from an NCAA investigation had already crippled Ole Miss' recruiting efforts in the 2018 class, currently with a class of 10 commitments outside of the top 25 class rankings. Of the 10 commitments, only one, receiver Demarcus Gregory[3], is ranked as a four-star recruit.

That is in stark contrast to the 2016 class for Freeze and his staff. It boasted 13 ESPN 300 commitments, including the second-ranked prospect overall, Greg Little[4], and the No. 7 prospect, Benito Jones[5].

The 2018 class has yet to see a decommitment, but the prospects are well aware of the impact the resignation and NCAA investigation will have on their potential future. Ohio offensive lineman Blaine Scott[6] has been committed to Ole Miss since May, but he will take some time to think about his recruitment in the days to come.

"Right now I'm just laying low," Scott said. "I will make a decision in a few days."

Gregory said he isn't conducting any recruiting interviews as of now. The rest of the commitments are still intact. The news is still fresh, though, and the investigation continues, so more decommitments could be on the horizon for the Rebels.

Freeze resigned, effective immediately, on Thursday night. The Rebels' athletic director told ESPN that school officials found a pattern that included calls from Freeze's university-issued cellphone to a number associated with a female escort service.

Regarding the ongoing NCAA investigation, the NCAA has accused the Rebels of 21 rules violations by current or former members of their football coaching staff. A new notice of allegations included eight new alleged rules violations and a charge of lack of institutional control.

The following is a list of commitments made to Power-5 programs from July 14-20:

ACC

Florida State[1]: Four-star Under Armour All-American Verdis Brown[2] (6-4, 323); DE Chaz Neal[3] (6-6, 255), grade pending

Big 12

Oklahoma[4]: Four-star ATH Jaquayln Crawford[5] (No. 135 in ESPN 300; 5-10, 163)

Texas[6]: Four-star Under Armour All-American WR Al'vonte Woodard[7] (No. 83 in ESPN 300; 6-1, 193)

Texas Tech[8]: WR KeSean Carter[9] (5-10, 146), grade pending; OG Hakeem White[10] (6-3, 281), grade pending

Big Ten

Indiana[11]: K Charles Campbell[12] (5-8, 180), grade pending; WR Miles Marshall[13] (6-3, 200), grade pending

Maryland[14]: S Jordan Mosley[15] (6-0, 190), grade pending

Michigan State[16]: Four-star DE Parks Gissinger[17] (6-3, 232)

Penn State[18]: Four-star Under Armour All-American WR Shaquon Anderson-Butts[19] (No. 300 in ESPN 300; 6-1, 202); Three-star TE-Y Judge Culpepper[20] (6-4, 256); Four-star WR Daniel George[21] (No. 290 in ESPN 300; 6-2, 201); Three-star QB-PP Will Levis[22] (6-4, 224); K Jake Pinegar[23] (6-1, 195), grade pending; Four-star S Isheem Young[24] (No. 170 in ESPN 300; 5-10, 200)

Pac-12

Arizona State[25]: OG Hunter Mayginnes[26] (6-4, 325), grade pending

Colorado[27]: CB Delrick Abrams Jr.[28] (JC; 6-2, 180), grade pending; Three-star WR Dimitri Stanley[29] (5-11, 180)

Washington[30]: 2019 QB-PP Dylan Morris[31] (6-1, 194), grade pending

SEC

Florida[32]: Four-star Under Armour All-American TE-H Kyle Pitts[33] (No.153 in ESPN 300; 6-6, 239)

Georgia[34]: 2019 WR Dominick Blaylock[35] (5-11, 185), grade pending; 2019 OLB J.D. Bertrand[36] (6-1, 210), grade pending

Mississippi State:[37] CB Ladarrius Bishop[38] (6-0, 189), grade pending

Independents / Group of 5

Notre Dame[39]: 2019 QB-PP Cade McNamara[40] (6-1, 173), grade pending

There's new leadership at Ole Miss after Thursday's surprising resignation from former coach Hugh Freeze.

Matt Luke, Freeze's longtime assistant, is now the interim head coach.

Here are five things to know about Luke, the man in charge of taking over a program on less-than-solid footing:

He knows Ole Miss as well as anyone: Following the usual path of succession and promoting a coordinator would have been a tricky move for athletic director Ross Bjork because offensive coordinator Phil Longo and defensive coordinator Wesley McGriff were hired less than seven months ago. So to make the transition as seamless as possible, they went with the coach who arguably knows Ole Miss better than anyone: Luke. Before Luke played as a center in the mid-1990s, his brother was a quarterback on the team. And well before that, his father was a defensive back. Entering this season, Luke, a Mississippi native who was a student assistant coach at Ole Miss in 1999 and is married to a woman from Oxford, was one of only two coaches remaining from Freeze’s initial staff in 2012. "He’s a leader," Bjork said. "He's a rock. He’s an Ole Miss Rebel."

But his qualifications extend beyond Oxford: He spent 10 years as a coach at Ole Miss, but Luke left to prove himself elsewhere a few times. His first paid position was as offensive line coach at Murray State from 2000-01, and after one season at Ole Miss under then-head coach David Cutcliffe, he went to Tennessee, where he was tight ends coach and recruiting coordinator for two seasons under legendary former coach Phil Fulmer. Before joining Freeze at Ole Miss in 2012, Luke linked back up with Cutcliffe at Duke, where he was offensive coordinator for four seasons.

How long he holds the job is anyone's guess: Bjork and chancellor Jeff Vitter had to move quickly when it became apparent that keeping Freeze was no longer an option. So if they're still in the process of formulating a game plan about how long to keep Luke as interim head coach, you'll have to be patient with them. "The team is the focus right now," Bjork said Thursday night. "I told the football staff that the No. 1 thing, from beginning to end, is the team and that's all that matters. I haven't even thought about a search. We had to get a plan in place right now. We start practice in less than two weeks. There will be a lot of time to conduct a search for a permanent head coach." In the meantime, Luke needs to find a replacement for himself, bringing Ole Miss up to the maximum of nine assistant coaches. Bjork said that could be an outside hire or a promotion from within.

His No. 1 priority might not be wins and losses: Ole Miss is on shaky ground right now. Freeze is gone, leaving a vacuum of leadership, and an NCAA investigation is looming. Recruiting has been hurt, scholarship limitations are already in effect and the school has self-imposed a one-year bowl ban. After the program's first losing season since 2011 last year, Luke has his work cut out for him. If he handles it well and keeps the locker room intact, Ole Miss has a chance to weather the storm. If not and the product on the field suffers, and in turn recruiting continues to wither, we could be looking at an extended rebuild for a team that had built a roster capable of competing with (and beating) the best of the SEC.

He has good pieces to work with: Speaking of the roster, there's a lot to like about Ole Miss on paper this season, especially on offense. Shea Patterson[1], who took over for an injured Chad Kelly[2] late last season, has the look of a young Johnny Manziel at quarterback. The true sophomore has the mobility, the arm and the improvisational skills to wreak havoc on defenses. What's more, he has plenty of weapons at receiver. There might not be a better trio of young receivers in the SEC than Ole Miss' A.J. Brown[3], D.K. Metcalf[4] and Van Jefferson[5]. If Eric Swinney[6] can provide some balance at running back, this offense will be capable of averaging 30 or more points per game. Although that might not be enough to contend for a division title with so many questions on defense and so many off-the-field distractions, it should make for a fun team to watch between the lines on Saturdays.

While we're still a ways from college football season, it's never too early to start looking at where the betting value lies for the upcoming season.

Phil Steele covers all angles in this four-part betting guide, giving you the best summer bets to make.


What do the Rice Owls[1] and Florida Gators[2] have in common? Phil has a strong take on how both teams will fare this season.

Alabama is the betting favorite, but there are plenty of good options for teams further down the board.

Phil scans the board for his best Heisman Trophy value bets, led by Stanford running back Bryce Love[3].

With lines out for many of the fall's most anticipated college football matchups, here's a look at the best bets to make now that could provide value on game day.

Thursday, 20 July 2017 23:42

Ole Miss Rebels Hugh Freeze hiring firing timeline

Written by

Hugh Freeze lasted five seasons as head coach at Ole Miss before he resigned amid scandal on Thursday evening.[1]

While the Mississippi native was a resounding success on the field during his tenure, winning nearly 60 percent of his games and reaching a Sugar Bowl, off the field the program had become the subject of an NCAA investigation and Freeze's own personal conduct ultimately ended up costing him his job.

Here's a look at the highs and lows of his tenure in Oxford, Mississippi:

Dec. 5, 2011: After a 10-2 season at Arkansas State -- his first as a head coach in college football -- Freeze is hired by Ole Miss to replace Houston Nutt. The Independence, Mississippi, native made his way through the ranks as a high school coach in Tennessee and was hired by Ole Miss first as a support staff member in 2005 and then as recruiting coordinator and tight ends coach from 2006 to '07. He was not retained when Nutt took the job in 2008.

Sept. 1, 2012: Freeze wins his first game as Ole Miss' head coach, beating Central Arkansas 49-27. With Bo Wallace at quarterback, the offense takes off, ranking in the top five of the SEC in scoring, total offense and passing. The Rebels go on to lose three games by a combined 10 points, but still manage to get bowl eligible by beating in-state rival Mississippi State in the final game of the regular season.

Feb. 6, 2013: After a respectable first signing class at Ole Miss in 2012, Freeze blows the doors off of expectations with the No. 5-ranked class in the country. The class includes No. 1 overall prospect, DE Robert Nkemdiche, along with the No. 1 offensive tackle, Laremy Tunsil, and the No. 1 wide receiver, Laquon Treadwell. However, the star-studded haul on signing day also raises a few eyebrows about how such a class came together at a school not known for its recruiting prowess. A few days earlier, Freeze took to Twitter to post: "If you have facts about a violation, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. If not, please don't slander the young men."

Oct. 4, 2014: In what will go down as the signature win of the Hugh Freeze era at Ole Miss, the Rebs take down then-undefeated and No. 1-ranked Alabama 23-17. It's the first time the school has ever beaten the No. 1-ranked team, and it's pandemonium in Vaught-Hemingway Stadium as fans storm the field and the goalposts are carried out of the stadium. "It's a huge win for our program and our fans," Freeze says afterward. "It's been a tremendous day."

June 24, 2015: Star left tackle Laremy Tunsil is arrested on charges of domestic violence against his stepfather, Lindsey Miller. Miller later alleges that Tunsil was "riding around with football agents" at the time of the altercation that led to Tunsil's arrest. Ole Miss eventually suspends Tunsil for the first seven games of the 2015 season while the NCAA investigates alleged improprieties.

Jan. 1, 2016: Freeze helps guide the Rebels to a 48-20 rout of No. 16 Oklahoma State in the Allstate Sugar Bowl. It is Ole Miss' first time playing in the Sugar Bowl since 1970. The win also marks the first time the Rebels won 10 games since 2003. With one of the SEC's best offenses during the 2016 season, the Rebels pound out 554 yards of offense and even watch left tackle Laremy Tunsil rumble in for a 2-yard touchdown on a lateral.

January 2016: Ole Miss receives its notice of allegations stemming from a multiyear NCAA investigation. The football program is cited by the NCAA in 13 of the 28 rules violations levied against the school, with nine of the violations occurring during Freeze's tenure. There are four Level I violations, two Level II violations and three Level III violations.

April 29, 2016: On a day when the three crown jewels of the 2013 recruiting class are set to be drafted, Tunsil's social media is hacked. A video posted to his Twitter account shows the former No. 1-rated offensive tackle smoking a bong. Then, on Instagram, a screen shot of a text message exchange is posted showing Tunsil arranging for money from an Ole Miss staff member to pay his mother's rent and electricity bill.

May 27, 2016: Ole Miss self-imposes a double-digit reduction in scholarships (11) for the football program over a four-year span, as well as an already-served postseason ban for women's basketball, as part of its response to an NCAA notice of allegations. Ole Miss officials also ask the NCAA to delay the school's hearing with the Committee on Infractions so it can have more time to investigate whether former left tackle Laremy Tunsil received additional improper benefits while playing for the Rebels.

Feb. 23, 2017: Ole Miss self-imposes a one-year bowl ban for the 2017 season, after the university receives a new NCAA notice of allegations that accuses the school of lack of institutional control and Freeze of failure to monitor his coaching staff. The second NOA includes eight new alleged rules violations and the lack of institutional control charge. The NCAA now accuses the Rebels of 21 rules violations by current or former members of their football coaching staff.

July 12, 2017: Less than 24 hours before Freeze is set to arrive in Hoover, Alabama, for SEC media days, Nutt files a lawsuit against Ole Miss and the Ole Miss Athletic Foundation in which Freeze is named as a central figure. In the lawsuit, Nutt alleges that Freeze orchestrated a "smear campaign" against him. At media days, Freeze refrains from speaking about Nutt or the lawsuit other than to say that the timing was unfortunate. He chooses not to comment about the ongoing NCAA investigation either. "We look forward to our meeting with the Committee on Infractions and putting this behind us," Freeze said. It would be the last time Freeze spoke publicly as Ole Miss' head football coach.

July 20, 2017: Freeze resigns[2], effective immediately, for what Ole Miss chancellor Jeffrey Vitter described as a "pattern of personal misconduct."

Ole Miss[1] football coach Hugh Freeze resigned effectively immediately on Thursday night, a week after he addressed speculation about his job future at SEC Media Days and about six weeks before the Rebels kick off the season against South Alabama.

Ole Miss officials didn't immediately provide a specific reason for Freeze's resignation. A news conference is scheduled for 8:30 p.m. ET in Oxford, Mississippi.

In six seasons, Freeze guided the Rebels to unprecedented heights, but his success was also sullied by an ongoing NCAA investigation. In February, the school self-imposed a one-year bowl ban for the 2017 season, after it received a new NCAA notice of allegations that accused the school of lack of institutional control and Freeze of failure to monitor his coaching staff.

The notice of allegations included eight new alleged rules violations and the lack of institutional control charge. The NCAA has now accused the Rebels of 21 rules violations by current or former members of their football coaching staff. Ole Miss agreed to forfeit its share of SEC postseason revenues for this coming season, which could be as much as $7.8 million, after it had already self-imposed a double-digit reduction in scholarships for football in May 2016 as part of its response to an NCAA notice of allegations it received in January 2016.

Freeze, 47, had a 39-25 record in six seasons with the Rebels, including a 19-21 mark against SEC foes. After going 10-3 in 2016, Ole Miss slipped to 5-7 this past season.

Among other charges, the NCAA accused the Rebels of providing improper benefits, including cash payments and merchandise, to prospects, as well as lodging and meals to recruits and their families. Freeze probably faced a multi-game suspension this coming season if he were found guilty of failing to monitor his staff.

The Rebels are expected to appear before the NCAA Committee on Infractions in Indianapolis later this summer, possibly in September.

Last week, former Rebels coach Houston Nutt sued Freeze and Ole Miss in federal court, accusing him and the university of orchestrating a smear campaign against him.

The lawsuit, filed in federal court in Oxford, alleges that Freeze and other school officials created a "false narrative" in an effort to place primary blame on Nutt for the NCAA's ongoing investigation.

According to the complaint, Nutt seeks damages to cover "lost wages, emotional distress, embarrassment, attorney's fees and punitive damages."

The suit leveled its harshest allegations at Freeze, alleging that he conducted off-the-record conversations with sports journalists as part of a "smear campaign."

The lawsuit says that it "is common knowledge among sports journalists that Coach Freeze does not take kindly to criticism." It also characterizes Freeze as "consistently exhibiting behaviors that are massively defensive," "going to extraordinary lengths through social media and otherwise to promote his self-image as a deeply spiritual Godly man who's done nothing wrong and is being persecuted," and "attempting to cultivate personal relationships with sports journalists for the purpose of promoting his self-image through positive news stories.

At SEC Media Days, Freeze chose not to comment on Nutt, who accused him and the university of orchestrating a smear campaign against him, but said that he was "disappointed by the timing of it" coming one day before he and his players arrived in Hoover, Alabama, for SEC media days.

"This is the fifth year in a row I've been here and I can't talk about our players," Freeze said, wanting to turn the focus away from off-field issues. Freeze said he took responsibility for the ongoing NCAA investigation into the program, pointing out how the school self-imposed scholarship limitations and a bowl ban.

"It's a lot we inherited and caused in some cases," Freeze said, alluding to the previous coaching staff.

After inheriting a team that won only two games in 2011 and had lost 14 consecutive SEC contests, Freeze guided the Rebels to four straight bowl games in his first four years -- the first Ole Miss coach to do it. Ole Miss was one of only five FBS programs in the country to make consecutive New Year's Six bowl appearances in the first two years of the College Football Playoff.

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