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College Football 2011 Week 11: Moving Forward

Nabraska and Penn State Football Logos

By Cabrone D. Brewer

The current atmosphere surrounding the area of central Pennsylvania known as Happy Valley is the antithesis of its namesake.

As members of the Penn State community continue to weather the fallout from the school’s handling of sex abuse allegations against former assistant coach Jerry Sandusky and subsequent firing of legendary coach Joe Paterno after 46 seasons, the football team must now prepare to face No. 19 Nebraska on what will ultimately be remembered as the most somber Senior Day in PSU history.

Having recently passed former Grambling State coach Eddie Robinson for the all-time FBS lead in wins with his 409th victory over Illinois, Paterno will now be forced to watch the game from outside the confines of Beaver Stadium for the first time in a career that stretched over six decades.

Security measures have been enhanced in the borough of State College, as local police look to maintain order ahead of the riots experienced Wednesday night when news first broke that the Hall of Fame coach had been relieved of his duties at the university.

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College Football 2011 Week 10: Championship Caliber

LSU and Alabama football logo

By Cabrone D. Brewer

If you’re an avid sports fan, chances are you haven’t been able to escape from the hype surrounding two of college football’s most dominating forces in recent weeks.

Now, you’ll finally get the chance to witness the outcome of their acquaintance.

For only the fifth time in BCS history, No. 1 and No. 2 will meet each other in the regular season as No. 1 LSU travels to Tuscaloosa to face SEC West rival No. 2 Alabama in a high-stakes positioning battle of championship importance.

Both teams have been on a collision course towards this highly anticipated matchup since the first BCS rankings were released Oct. 16, boasting heavy offensive and defensive arsenals that have allowed them to thoroughly decimate opponents in the process. Alabama ranks at the top of the FBS in rush defense, yards per game and points per game, while LSU lingers close behind in all categories.

Saturday will mark the first time that two SEC teams have met before the conference title game ranked No. 1 and No. 2 in the nation — not to mention the winner of the LSU-Alabama contest has played in the SEC championship game four of the past six years.

It may be hard to believe, but there other games of note this weekend in the SEC as well.

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College Football 2011 Week 9: Shakeups and Showdowns

Clemson University Paw LogoBy Cabrone D. Brewer

If you were searching for a heavy dose of tricks and treats this Halloween weekend, you didn’t have to look much further than your living room TV.

Six undefeated teams remain in the 2011 season after a frightful week of intense college football action left many schools looking for answers to the season that might have been.

After suffering their first defeat at home in 39 games, No. 11 Oklahoma traveled to Manhattan and decimated previously undefeated No. 10 Kansas State 58-17 on the Wildcats’ home turf.

Oklahoma quarterback Landry Jones threw for a school-record 505 yards and the Sooners had a season-high 690 yards of total offense against the Big 12’s top defensive unit. Jones and the Sooners started slow, but piled the offensive and defensive pressure on thick in the second half — holding K-State to only 32 yards of total offense after halftime.

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College Football 2011 Week 9: Looking Ahead

College football logos for Michigan State and Stanford Universities

By Cabrone D. Brewer

The debate over which school has the No. 1 team in college football lost two contenders in grand fashion last weekend, and many of us will witness yet another team get brushed to the side next weekend when No. 1 LSU and No. 2 Alabama face each other in Tuscaloosa.

In the mean time, however, some schools are looking to garner a few votes for the No. 1 position, while some are simply looking to put the pieces back together after devastating outcomes to the previous weekend’s contests.

No. 11 Oklahoma, who recently ended a 39-game home winning streak in Norman at the direction of a surprising Texas Tech squad, takes a field trip to the Little Apple to face No. 10 Kansas State.

After taking the field as the preseason No. 1 in the AP Poll, the eleventh-ranked Sooners look to avoid dropping back-to-back conference games for the first time since 1998 against a resurgent Kansas State team that boasts the top-ranked defense in the Big 12 conference.

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College Football Player Makes It Big with Only One Hand

Univsersity of Albany LogoFive years ago, Eddie Delaney was a freshman at the University of Albany. Like many young men, Delaney had played football in high school and wanted to continue playing the sport now that he was in college. So, Delaney and his father made an appointment with the university’s football coach, Bob Ford. Although Delaney had been a team captain in high school, Ford had some reservations about him.

“We were concerned about his hand,” Ford said. “I guess probably 70 percent of the coaches in the nation might have said, ‘No, you can’t do it.'”

Wait, why would a football coach be concerned with a player’s hand? Oh, I guess I forgot to mention one important fact: Delaney was born with only one hand.

Luckily, Ford did allow Delany to join the scout team as a walk-on defensive end player and Delaney practiced against the first-string offensive line. The Great Danes went undefeated in conference games that year. During this time, Delaney gave everything he had to the game.

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College Football 2011 Recap: Home Wrecked

Texas Tech Football LogoBy Cabrone D. Brewer

It was supposed to be another walk in the park for No. 3 Oklahoma Saturday evening in Norman, but lowly Texas Tech waited calmly in the shadows of Memorial Stadium to suddenly rain on the Sooners’ parade.

After heavy thunderstorms in the area delayed the start of the game by more than hour, unranked Texas Tech emerged from the locker room en fuego as quarterback Seth Doege threw for 441 yards while the Oklahoma defense subsequently relinquished a dismal total of 572 yards to help the Red Raiders escape Norman with a 41-38 victory.

The Sooners’ hopes for a spot in the national title game have severely diminished after the four-touchdown underdog Red Raiders became only the third team in the Bob Stoops era to defeat Oklahoma on their home turf.

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College Football 2011 Week 8: In Full Swing

Bowl Champions Series LogoBy Cabrone D. Brewer

The first half of the season is in the books and from the results of the first BCS computer rankings of the season, the No. 1 LSU Tigers have carved out a nice niche in the polls.

LSU is ranked No. 1, followed by Alabama, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Boise State in a close-knit BCS race that currently sets up two epic conference thrillers in the Big 12 and SEC later this season.

As for the games at hand this weekend for schools ranked in the current BCS poll, it should be business as usual for most of the parties involved.

Still searching for an identity this year in the SEC, No. 19 Auburn travels to Baton Rouge to take on No. 1 LSU Saturday afternoon. LSU will play without three key players — cornerback Tyrann Mathieu, running back Spencer Ware and defensive back Therold Simon — who were all suspended for Saturday’s match for a violation of team rules earlier in the week.

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College Football 2011: Bring on the BCS

bowl champion seriesBy Cabrone D. Brewer

In a season full of surprises, one thing remained constant Sunday night: LSU is simply ahead of the pack.

The Bayou Bengals were granted the No. 1 position in the first BCS Poll to be released this season — besting Southeastern Conference rival Alabama and perennial Big 12 powerhouse Oklahoma in the celebrated mid-season standings that combine the Coaches’ Poll, Harris Poll and a compilation of six computer rankings to place the top two schools in the national championship at the end of the season.

If the current trajectory stays on course, the BCS will become an interesting topic of conversation when No. 1 LSU meets No. 2 Alabama Nov.5 in Tuscaloosa and No. 3 Oklahoma battles No. 4 Oklahoma State during Bedlam Dec. 3 in Stillwater.

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College Football 2011: Hello, Goodbye

College Football Big 12 Logo

By Cabrone D. Brewer

Fall is certainly a season of change.

Adding depth to a string of off the field changes that are emerging this season, Texas Christian University announced that they would be joining the Big 12 conference and snubbing the Big East before they ever had a chance to play a game in the league.

The move shifts the focus back to the realignment issue circulating college football this season, with the Big East left to ponder the fate of its conference following departure announcements by Syracuse and Pittsburgh earlier this year.

Arizona may have a solid relationship with the Pac-12, but coach Mike Stoops is searching for new employment opportunities after receiving his walking papers from the Wildcats earlier this week.

The firing of coach Stoops wasn’t completely unexpected — Arizona is currently sporting a 1-5 record six games into the season.

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College Football Week 6 Recap: OU Defense Shines in Big D

OU Logo in Red

By Cabrone D. Brewer

A game traditionally billed as a shootout between Oklahoma and Texas turned into an ugly blowout early Saturday afternoon, with the No. 3 Sooners dismantling the No. 11 Longhorns 55-17 in the 106th installment of the Red River Rivalry at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas.

Oklahoma’s voracious defense was absolutely sensational from beginning to end — converting a school-record three of five turnovers into touchdowns and matching another record with eight sacks.

Quarterback Landry Jones was firing on all cylinders as well, completing 31 of 50 passes for 367 yards and no turnovers. Running back Dominique Whaley continues to impress both coaches and fans, breaking a 64-yard touchdown run in the third quarter as the stingy Sooner defense limited Texas to only 36 yards rushing on 45 attempts.

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