College Football Insider Blog 

An inside look at the teams, players, coaches and trends that shape college football Saturdays

SEC Power Rankings: Week 4

  • 6:30 am Monday, September 22nd, 2014 by Andy Johnston

Is this the year that Mississippi State makes a move? The Bulldogs sure looked like a contender, not a pretender, in their upset of LSU. Dak Prescott is beginning to receive some Heisman talk, but I’m not ready to put him among the leaders just yet.

Alabama (No. 2 last week) – Alabama moves ahead of Texas A&M because it put the “Roll” in “Roll Tide” with 645 yards of offense against Florida. Lane Kiffin is proving that he was a strong hire.

Texas A&M (No. 1) – SMU played road kill for the Aggies, who rested Kenny Hill for the [More]

Deshaun Watson to make first start for Clemson

  • 9:26 pm Sunday, September 21st, 2014 by Andy Johnston

Dabo Swinney did the right thing by not starting Deshaun Watson in Clemson’s game at Florida State.

He’s doing the right thing by starting him this week.

Swinney said Sunday that the incredibly talented freshman quarterback from Gainesville will be behind center when the Tigers host North Carolina at 7 p.m. Saturday.

“That’s the decision I had to make based on what I saw,” Swinney said on his Sunday conference call, as reported by the Charleston Post and Courier. “Had Cole played, well, like he played the first couple games, or Deshaun didn’t play well when he went in, we’d kind of [More]

Matt Mumme’s Air Raid offense powers LaGrange

  • 12:46 pm Friday, September 19th, 2014 by Andy Johnston

Matt Mumme has tweaked his father’s Air Raid offense here and there, but for the most part, it’s nearly identical to what Hal Mumme originated and has run at his many coaching stops.

Matt Mumme installed the wide-open system at LaGrange when he arrived as offensive coordinator in 2013 and is still calling the plays, even though he replaced Todd Mooney as coach midway through last season. (Read more about Hal Mumme in this ESPN The Magazine piece).

“I learned everything from him,” Matt said of his dad, who has been the coach at several schools, including Kentucky and Valdosta [More]

College football TV viewing guide: Five games to watch

  • 6:30 am Friday, September 19th, 2014 by Andy Johnston

What’s that strange site? A day of conference games? Finally. Look around and you’ll see plenty of what should be more competitive matchups than we’ve seen so far this season. Here’s the best of the bunch.

Georgia Tech at Virginia Tech, noon, ESPN

The Hokies were a little pokey at the start of last week’s loss to East Carolina. And it cost them. If Virginia Tech had won, it had a chance at going undefeated this season. That’s evaporated and now the Hokies have to slow Georgia Tech. Even if they don’t, can the Jackets slow them?

Florida at Alabama, 3:30 p.m., CBS

Florida [More]

Jameis Winston suspended for part of Clemson game

  • 11:33 am Wednesday, September 17th, 2014 by Andy Johnston

Heisman winner Jameis Winston will miss a half of Florida State’s game against Clemson on Saturday night as punishment for shouting an obscene phrase at FSU’s student union this week.

That’s the decision reached by coach Jimbo Fisher position after the ACC teleconference on Wednesday.

“Everything has been addressed and we’re getting ready for the game,” Fisher said, but then later added, “We’re deciding. We’re talking as things go on right now,” when asked about Winston’s availability against Clemson.

The top-ranked Seminoles host 22nd-ranked Tigers at 8 p.m. Saturday (ABC) in the ACC’s premier game of the year.

It was reported that [More]

SEC Power Rankings: Week 3

  • 6:30 am Monday, September 15th, 2014 by Andy Johnston

Not surprising, there’s some movement in this week’s SEC Power Rankings. South Carolina’s win over Georgia means the SEC West – again not surprising – controls the top six spots.

1. Texas A&M (No. 1 last week) – Kenny “Trill” Hill is better than Johnny Manziel. That’s premature, but the Aggies’ new QB has 11 TD passes and no picks. Very impressive.

2. Alabama (No. 3) – Maybe Amari Cooper should be the Heisman favorite. Like Hill, he’s off to a stupendous start with 33 catches in three games.

3. LSU (No. 5) – So LSU loses a bunch of defensive [More]

Man hides in Nick Saban’s bathroom, springs surprise proposal

  • 3:38 pm Friday, September 12th, 2014 by Andy Johnston

Bear with me. This one takes an explanation.

Drew Clayton, who graduated from Mississippi State, didn’t want to flush his chance at a grand marriage proposal.

His fiancee, Kayla Posey was finishing graduate school at Alabama last spring, where she worked as one of coach Nick Saban’s student assistants.

Her co-workers helped Clayton gain access to Saban’s office (he was out of town at the time), where he replaced one of the national championship rings with his ring. One of Posey’s jobs was to give tours of the athletic facilities, and Saban’s office was one of the stops.

Here’s how Al.com reported [More]

State notebook: Valdosta State ready for Cobb County stage

  • 12:09 pm Friday, September 12th, 2014 by Andy Johnston

Valdosta State has thousands of alumni throughout metro Atlanta, leading school officials to try for years to schedule a football game somewhere in the area.

College football TV viewing guide: Five games to watch

  • 9:51 am Friday, September 12th, 2014 by Andy Johnston

So much for the likes of Nicholls State, The Citadel, Lamar and Sam Houston State. The level of competition is improved – albeit slightly for some teams — which should lead to some fancy channel flipping at night.

East Carolina at Virginia Tech, noon, ESPN

Virginia Tech appears to be back. OK, it’s only two games, but the Hokies were unfazed by the masses and mystique of Ohio State’s Horseshoe last week. With no teams on their schedule currently ranked, Virginia Tech could be looking at a return to glory, when they averaged 10.5 wins from 2004-11. Let downs against teams like [More]

Todd Gurley is Heisman favorite in latest odds

  • 4:00 pm Thursday, September 11th, 2014 by Andy Johnston

The money is now on Todd Gurley to win the Heisman Trophy.

Of course, there’s nearly three months of the season to be played and votes aren’t due until December, so take that for what it’s worth.

Still, Georgia’s unstoppable running back rumbled to the top of the pack and is now the favorite — at 5-1 — to win this year’s Heisman Trophy, according to sportsbook Bovada.

There’s been a lot of movement at the top, with Gurley moving past Oregon QB Marcus Mariota, despite not playing last Saturday.

“The updated Heisman odds after Week 2 had Marcus Mariota as the [More]