The excitement of the NRL and AFL finals began on the weekend, and that same hype will carry on to Coffs Harbour this week where the 2006 National 18 Years and under Championships are set to begin. Welcome to the pre-National 18’s edition of 60 Seconds in Touch! The National 18’s tournament is a fantastic opportunity to showcase some of the best junior Touch players in Australia. It consists of teams from state school systems, NTL permit areas and state bodies.Tournament staff made their way to Coffs Harbour on Sunday, with the constant rain and wind of concern to all. Weather predictions say it will be clearing up towards the end of the week, just in time for the Touch action to start!The Opening Ceremony for the event will take place at 11am on Wednesday. All teams are required to attend, and team captains will be involved in a march past. The ceremony will involve a farewell for the Australian sides heading to South Africa for the 2007 World Cup. Former Australian representative, Dean Russell will address the players and wish them well for the tournament. The Touch community will also be able to wish the players well, with several Boxing Kangaroo flags in the merchandise room for players and spectators to sign or record a message of good luck.South Sydney Rabbitohs NRL player and ex-Australian Touch representative, Joe Williams will be at this year’s tournament, he’ll be around the grounds helping out and checking out the junior talent.Those cheeky guys from the Fishbowl – the tournament control tower, are back again this year to entertain the crowd with their wit and humour. Adam Collins and Tony El Takchi will be announcing game times, warm up times, ‘match of the round’ and basically entertaining the crowd. Kane Weeks will be joining them on Saturday for finals day. Stay tuned to this website for their daily wrap up, ‘From the Fishbowl’.Thank you to the fantastic staff at the Coffs Harbour International Stadium for once again contributing to the success of the tournament. The fields are in immaculate condition as always, thanks to Russell and his ground crew. Thanks also to Frank and his staff will once again have a delicious range of food and drinks available for purchase.The crew from Sporting Images will be at the event this week shooting action shots and also team photos. Photographs will be available for purchase online at www.sportingimages.net following the tournament. Up to date information from the tournament, including results and feature stories will be updated as often as possible. The Sporting Pulse results website will show all game results, draws and touchdown scorers, so stay tuned to www.austouch.com.au for all the latest news.
The NRL and Touch Football Australia (TFA) are delivering free non-contact footy skills sessions to inactive kids in regional areas around Australia, thanks to a participation grant from the Australian Government’s lead sports agency, Sport Australia, as part of their Move It Aus ‘Find Your 30’ campaign.The partner organisations are delivering four skills sessions to both primary and high school kids, with a focus on those aged 13 to 18, and girls in particular. Once the participants have completed their four sessions, they’re provided the opportunity to take part in a gala day competing in games, to put their new skills into practice.NRL Chief Executive Todd Greenberg said the program would provide children with the opportunity to engage in their communities.“This program not only encourages healthy lifestyles, it provides a pathway for kids to transition into structured Rugby League and Touch Football competitions, which promote teamwork and a real sense of community,’’ he said.The programs are being delivered in regional areas of Western Australia, the Northern Territory, South Australia, Queensland and New South Wales.The NRL and TFA launched this program at Broome Touch Association on Thursday 24th October.TFA CEO Jamie O’Connor says that although the positive impacts of footy on individuals and communities all around the country are powerful no matter where you are in Australia, the impacts are even more significant in regional communities like Broome, Katherine, Mt Gambier and Griffith, which are just a few of the places where the program’s being run.“Passing or kicking a footy around helps you ‘Find Your 30’ minutes of physical activity a day, but in regional towns especially, footy can be the glue that draws the community, people of all ages, together in a healthy activity that brings benefits for physical and mental health,” he said.“The beauty about non-contact footy is that anyone can play – any age, gender, body shape and skill level – and everyone can play together, girls and boys, the young and old, family members, friends.”Minister for Youth and Sport Richard Colbeck said the Move It Aus Participation Grants program was about encouraging moreAustralians to get moving and make Australia the world’s most active and healthy nation.“The Morrison Government is pleased to support this partnership between the NRL and Touch Football Australia, which aims to encourage up to 4,000 Aussie kids to get involved in non-contact footy,” Minister Colbeck said.“We know some kids tend to drop out of sport and physical activity in their mid-teens so this is a fantastic initiative to reach children in regional Australia and give them fun opportunities to be involved in sport.”These programs are being delivered now up until June 2020. For details about where programs are currently running, or to register interest, go to playrugbyleague.com/play/move-it-aus/
About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Cardiff boss Warnock furious with ref ‘experiment’ for Watford defeatby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveCardiff City boss Neil Warnock was furious after their 3-2 win over Watford.Andrew Madley officiated the game at Vicarage Road, which ended in a win for the Hornets, the young referee’s first Premier League game of the season.In fact it was only Madley’s second ever match officiating in the English top tier, a decision which left Warnock bemused.”I was disappointed in one or two things,” said Warnock.”I thought Murphy should have had a free-kick, I thought it was very similar to the one he gave on the edge of their box.”And I thought Troy Deeney was lucky not to get a card if I’m honest. Conditions were poor but once he started sliding in and the goalie was going to get it, he could have pulled his foot away.”When I’ve got Andre Marriner sat at the side of me and I’ve got a young referee who’s (refereeing) his first game of the season, I don’t understand that at all.”Whether it’s just because ‘it’s only Cardiff City and we’ll let someone have an experiment today…”
DONE DEAL: Leicester sign Italian striker Lorenzo after successful trialby Freddie Taylor10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveLeicester City have signed Davide Lorenzo on a short term deal.He was on trial at the club and impressed the coaching staff.Now the 24-year-old has a chance to show what he can do for the rest of the season.Per Italian reports, he had met Leicester’s owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha in a restaurant when he was working at a waiter some months ago. Vichai offered him a trial and the rest is history…He has previous stints at Juventus, Cosmos and the New York Red Bulls.”I am happy to have achieved this goal, I have pursued it for so long,” Lorenzo said to TMW.”I know that the contract was a consequence of the actions I have done inside and, above all, outside the field.”I refer to all the things I have experienced in the last years, during which I learned so much from my mistakes, now I just have to continue like this, training hard every day to get more emotions like that.” TagsTransfersAbout the authorFreddie TaylorShare the loveHave your say
TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Molde chief Neerland: Solskjaer will bring attacking style to Man Utdby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveMolde managing director Oystein Neerland expects Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to bring an attacking brand of football to Manchester United.Molde have agreed to ‘lend’ Solskjaer to United as a caretaker following the sacking of Jose Mourinho.Neerland said: “For us, he is an offensive coach who plays entertaining football and he sees winning 4-2 as being better than 1-0.“He is very good at building teams, working within a structure to develop home grown players and giving them confidence to play but also being able to know when to sell them when the time is right because that is how this club works.“He has been so successful here. He has been here for six years – before and after Cardiff – and is very stable, very loyal and, just like at Manchester United, he is a former player so he knows the club very well and knows the DNA of the club.“He is a very positive guy. He is very easy to like and has a clear vision of how to play football but also works well with individual players.“There is no doubt in my mind that he will do well at Manchester United. He is a club legend there and that immediately means he will get respect from the players and the fans.“I don’t know well enough what’s happened inside Manchester United to comment and I will be careful on what I say on that.“But what I do know is that it’s important that he knows the history of the club and knows Manchester United’s past and what makes them successful.“It’s new times for the players but I know they will like him personally, they will enjoy working with him and it will be a big challenge to get some good results.“Of course it’s a surprise but not so much when you remember he’s got such history with the club, understands the club and he is also such a nice guy. He works so well with players and is a gentleman.”
Liverpool boss Klopp won’t consider releasing Lallana for loanby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveLiverpool boss Jurgen Klopp won’t consider releasing Adam Lallana for loan.Sky Sports says Klopp has no plans to let Lallana leave on loan.The England international hasn’t had as many minutes as he would like since recovering from injury.There had been talk of him moving to Europe on a short-term deal with Besiktas reportedly making enquiry.But there is no chance of him going anywhere else to get match action this month.Lallana remains a key member of Klopp’s squad and the Liverpool boss has no plans to let any more of his players depart this month. TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say
TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say REVEALED: Arsenal chief Kroenke only Prem owner never to spend on their clubby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveStan Kroenke has not spent a penny of his personal fortune on Arsenal, it has been revealed.The Sun says he is the only Prem club owner not to dig into his own pocket to fund the team over the past decade.Arsenal owner Kroenke sits on a massive personal fortune of £7billion but has been unwilling to spend any of that money on the club.Instead the 71-year-old has restricted the Gunners to only using money the club brings in itself – leading to them falling behind their Premier League rivals.Arsenal’s business model means that, unlike the rest of the Prem, their spending was entirely funded from self-generated revenues – through television, sponsorship and marketing income, plus prize money.
Romero reveals Solskjaer has ‘restored happiness’ at Man Utdby Freddie Taylor10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveManchester United goalkeeper Sergio Romero says Ole Gunnar Solskjaer restored happiness to the playing group.The Norwegian has gone five from five since taking over as caretaker manager last month.And Romero believes that the players are enjoying their football.”We’ve had a great run,” Romero told the club’s website.”Not just the results, but the way in which we have won the games as well. Scoring five goals in one match was a big boost to confidence and was really something.”What we’re showing now, after a great Christmas, is only right for a club of this stature, [it] proves what we can do. The run we’ve had over Christmas and new year is testament to that.”[The manager] knows what he wants to achieve – both for the club and us as individuals. On the pitch and within the club, he has made it very clear from the outset so we know the expectation of us inside the club and externally.”You can see he has brought to the club a certain happiness and it is going well.” About the authorFreddie TaylorShare the loveHave your say
TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say REVEALED: Mourinho has Man Utd pay-off settledby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveJose Mourinho is free to negotiate his next job after being paid his compensation up front by Manchester United in December.The Daily Mail says United paid up Mourinho’s £15million compensation package immediately after he was sacked.The 55-year-old was dismissed on December 18 after two and a half seasons in charge.The fact that he received the pay-off on his departure from Old Trafford means he is free to return to management.A source said, “There are no issues over Jose’s contract with Manchester United. Everything has been sorted.”Jose is able to take on another job right now, but is in no rush. He is very relaxed about it and would be happy to wait until the end of the season if he needs to.”
Pogba willing to stay with Man Utd – for record wagesby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the lovePaul Pogba is demanding Manchester United make him one of the highest paid players in the world if they want him to stay.Tuttosport says the midfielder’s first choice is to leave United, with Real Madrid and Juventus keen.However, Pogba is prepared to stay with United if they accept his terms.The World Cup winner is seeking over €650,000-a-week to stay – or €34m-a-year.New contract talks commenced between the two parties on Tuesday. TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say
Burnley midfielder Jeff Hendrick: The key to early season formby Paul Vegas13 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveBurnley midfielder Jeff Hendrick admits a lack of Europa League football has worked in their favour this season.The Clarets are seventh in the Premier League table after an impressive start to the campaign. “We’ve progressed but I think last year was a bit different,” the midfielder said.“I know it was frustrating for us as players and maybe the fans, staff and everyone.“At the start of the season, with the games we had, it was difficult, it was tiring.“I was talking to my friend at Wolves when we played them and I said, ‘How are you getting on with the European football?’ and he just said he’s constantly tired.“Without even knowing, the travelling does take it out of you and that’s what happened with us last year.“Even when we were out of that, we tried to pick the performances up, but it didn’t work.“Eventually we sat down, we all got on the same track and the performances started to pick up and we got some points on the board, which we did need at the back end of last year.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say
Leicester boss Rodgers happy with win against Burnleyby Paul Vegas6 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveLeicester City boss Brendan Rodgers was delighted with their win against Burnley.City fell behind just after the first half’s midway point, as former Fox Chris Wood nodded in Dwight McNeil’s cross to give Sean Dyche’s men a 1-0 lead, which looked to be intact heading into the break.However, a fine piece of play from Harvey Barnes resulted in his delivery finding Jamie Vardy, whose header – his sixth goal in nine Premier League outings – levelled matters on the stroke of half-time. Youri Tielemans put the Foxes ahead in the 73rd minute.“It’s a very good three points without us being anywhere near our best,” Rodgers told LCFC TV. “I thought that we started slowly and we weren’t aggressive enough. Too many players probably felt that we could just play with the ball and not without the ball.“At this level, you can’t do that against a good team like Burnley who haven’t been beaten away from home since the beginning of the season. You have to earn the right, and we didn’t do that.“Thankfully, we got a goal just before half-time. It was a great cross and wonderful leap by Jamie [Vardy] and finish. But we had to be more aggressive in the game, it was too timid. Like I say, we didn’t want to do the other side of the game.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say
Tata Martino could’ve come in to MLS with his nose turned up. He had managed Argentina, one of the world’s most important national teams. He coached Barcelona, one of the world’s greatest club teams. Now he deigned to come to the United States and take over an expansion team. But it wasn’t like that. Instead, his players, who sent him off in December with a win in the MLS Cup final, remember the coach as a humble, straightforward figure who became beloved in the locker room and by fans. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? “I think the thing that probably stuck out to me the most is just how humble and how honest he is,” defender Greg Garza said last month ahead of the MLS Cup final. “Off the field, he’s a guy you can probably talk to about the game or talk about anything with and he’ll give you a straight answer – and tell you what he’s feeling or what he thinks about you on the dot. There’s nothing he hides. “He’s the kind of person that can sit in the middle seat on the plane on travel days, and he doesn’t complain about it. He doesn’t want to make himself feel a bit more special than any of us. He’s a part of this group, a part of this team.” Garza was one of several players Martino and Atlanta’s front office brought in to help build a team that won MLS Cup in its second year of existence. The team was made up of a mix of players – some MLS veterans, some rising South American stars, players who came to the team through the MLS Draft or trades. While Martino won’t build a national team like he did with signings in Atlanta, he will need to get a locker room to gel. It’s something he takes seriously and something that should serve him well as he looks to find places for veterans like Andres Guardado and Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez while making room for a new generation of players like Erick Gutierrez and Raul Jimenez, all fit around rising star Hirving Lozano. “I’ve seen teams where there are bad relationships in the locker room, but they can leave that aside and win on the field. For me, I’m not satisfied with any part of that,” Martino said before the final. “It’s very important to have a good group of people that get along well, where the people come in to work and do it in a happy way, that they enjoy being at the club. “And it’s not just the players, but the coaching staff, the trainers also, the kit-man, the people who work around the club. In these two years, we’ve been able to work in a marvelous environment with exceptional facilities. I think that good energy over the course of time transmits itself on to the field.” Atlanta’s players enjoyed the environment Martino fostered and backed him for success in his next step. His players say El Tri are getting a coach that is humble but also speaks clearly and directly. “He’s an excellent manager. He has a lot of good values as a person. He makes things very clear with short and direct messages,” center back Leandro Gonzalez Pírez said. “On the playing field, it’s the same. He speaks about working on tactics very clearly and knows a lot about football, so we’re going to miss him a lot.” Asked to single out a few characteristics he’ll miss about the manager, midfielder Miguel Almiron struggled to pinpoint one thing. “I think I’m going to miss everything about Tata,” he said. “Not just me, but my teammates, the fans in Atlanta. He’s a great person, and as everyone knows he’s a great manager.” A great manager who left a big mark on Atlanta. Now he’s on to his next challenge, one where he won’t have some of the same luxuries he had with the Five Stripes. There is no front office to search for players or owner to spend on reinforcements. It’s just Martino working with the same group of players for a few days at a time during FIFA windows. Yet, that’s the kind of coaching Martino said he wanted to get back to. It seems the intensity of Barcelona and dealing with only the game’s greats and soon-to-be greats left him feeling empty. Getting a team and actually teaching and helping players evolve with Atlanta United brought him joy. “I said what happened to me (in Atlanta) is I started to feel like a coach again from the perspective of putting a team together, signing players, giving the team an identity, see how the players are growing in the last two years,” Martino said. “A lot of times when you work at the top level, you feel like your part really isn’t as important, you don’t feel as involved in the growth. “Here the same thing happened as happened at Newell’s. I felt like I participated, I felt happy, I felt I had an influence on the growth of the team and the growth of the players, and I’ll try to conserve this and try to think about this above all when I have the possibility to choose another job.” Now he’s chosen to take on the challenge of managing El Tri, one where he’ll have plenty of opportunities to put his fingerprints on the team and – he hopes – build a long-term project that takes the Mexico national team to new heights and adds to an already-impressive legacy.
Liverpool defender Andrew Robertson has dismissed claims he urged Scotland team-mate Kieran Tierney to quit Celtic for the sake of his career.Bhoys left-back Tierney has reportedly already been the subject of one failed £15 million ($19m) bid from Arsenal after helping Celtic complete an historic triple treble last season.Transfer consultant Ian McGarry claimed Tierney’s chat with Scotland colleague Robertson has convinced the 22-year-old he should pursue a move south of the border. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Speaking on the Transfer Window Podcast, he said: “The second thing that has changed for Kieran Tierney is speaking to his international team-mate Andy Robertson. Lot of rubbish https://t.co/TYlzTNyA7o — Andrew Robertson (@andrewrobertso5) June 24, 2019 “Having won the Champions League at the end of last season, he’s told Tierney ‘look, don’t default your career for the sake of staying at the club you support’.”But Scotland skipper Robertson took to social media on Monday to distance himself from McGarry’s suggestion, quote tweeting an article about the subject with the post “lot of rubbish”. Celtic are reluctant to lose Tierney and the player still has four years remaining on his existing deal with the Scottish giants.Arsenal, though, are unlikely to be deterred as boss Unai Emery looks to rebuild his squad for next season after missing out on the Champions League.Tierney has played in a number of positions for Celtic, featuring at centre-back, centre-midfield and left-wing in addition to his most-natural left-back role. As well as reports linking him to north London, there have been some rumours of a reunion with Brendan Rodgers at Leicester as the former Hoops boss looks to put his own mark on the Fox’s squad. Robertson was released by Celtic at U15 level and but moved to fellow Glasgow club Queens Park where he went on to make his professional debut.The defender then blossomed after a move to Dundee United, and got a move south of the border to Hull City in 2014.After three season with the Tigers, Robertson moved to Anfield and has now emerged as one of the best left-backs in the Premier League, helping Liverpool secure the strongest defensive record in the top flight last season as they finished runners-up to Manchester City.
John Obi Mikel has announced his retirement from international football after helping Nigeria to third place in the Africa Cup of Nations.The Super Eagles lost to Algeria in the last four in Egypt, but atoned for that disappointment to a degree with a 1-0 win over Tunisia in the third place play-off.That game marked the last appearance in a Nigeria shirt for Mikel, who confirmed the end of his career for his country in a post on Instagram. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? It read: “Egypt is a country where I’ve started and have finished my national career. In 2006 I played my first official championship for my country. [The] 2019 Africa Cup of Nations marks my last championship for national team with Super Eagles. “My national career started in 2003 [at the] under-17 World Cup and I’m grateful for the national team for placing me on the world arena and giving me an opportunity to show my skill and have an incredible national and international career.”At the age of 32 it’s time for me to retire from the national team and let the youth take over, who’ve done an amazing job securing a bronze medal at AFCON 2019. “Thank you to all my Nigerian supporters and to my country for all the trust, support and love you’ve shown me over the past 15 years.”Mikel am out!”MIkel won the AFCON in 2013 and collected a bronze medal at the 2016 Olympic Games, while he also featured for the Super Eagles at the 2014 and 2018 World Cups.The former Chelsea star will continue his successful club career with Trabzonspor, having joined the Turkish side this summer.Mikel won two Premier League titles as well as Champions League and Europa League trophies in 11 years with Chelsea before spending a season at Tianjin TEDA.He returned to England in January this year with Middlesbrough and made 19 appearances as they finished sixth in the Championship – one point outside of the play-offs.Mikel has signed a two-year deal with Trabzonspor, but his contract includes an option to stay on for a third season.
ANN ARBOR, MI – OCTOBER 10: Michigan Wolverines head football coach Jim Harbaugh watches the action during the second quarter of the game against the Northwestern Wildcats on October 10, 2015 at Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor, Michigan. The Wolverines defeated the Wildcats 38-0. (Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images)Michigan is investigating possible NCAA violations by its student athletes regarding the rumored sale of team-issued shoes – the same violations that got North Carolina football players suspended – but Jim Harbaugh issued a major, promising update on Monday night.The Wolverines’ head coach told reporters on Monday night that he does not expect any of his players to get suspended as a result of the school’s investigation.Michigan announced this past weekend that it was investigating the possible sale of team-issued shoes to the same dealer that had a bunch of team-issued North Carolina shoes.The Wolverines’ investigation into possible sales was not just football-based, but Harbaugh’s team does receive a lot of special shoes.“There were a couple shoes that were reported to be out there, we’ve gone through everybody that’s currently on the roster and they’ve accounted for those pairs of shoes,” Harbaugh told reporters. “The latest (pair) I saw (on the market) was a No. 52 (pair of shoes). There’s nobody currently on the roster that had that number last year.”Harbaugh was then asked directly if he expected any of his players to be suspended.“No,” he said.Michigan opens its 2018 season on a major stage. The Wolverines are set to take on Notre Dame in South Bend, Ind. on Sept. 1.ESPN’s College GameDay is set to be there.
STARKVILLE, MS – OCTOBER 21: The Mississippi State Bulldogs move down the field against the Kentucky Wildcats during the first half of an NCAA football game at Davis Wade Stadium on October 21, 2017 in Starkville, Mississippi. (Photo by Butch Dill/Getty Images)One of the top quarterbacks in the country has been suspended for his team’s Week 1 game. The news of the suspension is fairly shocking.Mississippi State head coach Joe Moorhead announced this afternoon that his team’s starting QB, Nick Fitzgerald, will not be playing this weekend.Fitzgerald is one of the top quarterbacks in the country, coming off a really impressive 2017 season.He’s being suspended along with a couple of other players.Joe Moorhead announces Nick Fitzgerald has been suspended for the season opener against Stephen F. Austin— SEC Mike (@MichaelWBratton) August 27, 2018Fitzgerald, a senior, has more than 4,000 career passing yards and 39 touchdowns. He’s rushed for more than 2,000 yards and 33 touchdowns.His absence Week 1 likely won’t have much of an effect on Mississippi State’s chances, as the Bulldogs are taking on Stephen F. Austin.However, if Fitzgerald were to miss an extended period of time, that would be significant. Mississippi State is set to take on Kansas State in Manhattan Week 2. SEC play starts on Sept. 22.
BATON ROUGE, LA – NOVEMBER 03: Tua Tagovailoa #13 of the Alabama Crimson Tide runs for a third quarter touchdown while playing the LSU Tigers at Tiger Stadium on November 3, 2018 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Alabama won the game 29-0. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)We are about a month away from the presentation of the Heisman Trophy. There isn’t much drama surrounding the race this year.Barring a miraculous 11th-hour change, Alabama’s Tua Tagovailoa is going to take home the prize. He’s been outstanding all year, putting up big numbers on the best team in the country.However, that doesn’t mean there aren’t others also enjoying big seasons. ESPN’s David Hale made the case today that another signal caller has a strong resume for the award.According to Hale, Oklahoma’s Kyler Murray is right there for college football’s highest honor.In Bedlam, Kyler Murray made his case. He completed 21 of 29 throws. He averaged 12 yards a pass. He topped 400 yards of offense for the fourth time this season (and twice more, he has topped 395). Murray has done all this in the long shadow of last year’s Heisman winner, on an offense that lost its star tailback in Week 2, with a defense that has already required a change at coordinator and looks about as enthusiastic to slow down traffic as a TSA agent on his lunch break.We know Alabama would be elite with or without Tagovailoa. But take Murray off Oklahoma’s roster and the Sooners would be lucky to be a .500 team.Murray is an electrifying player. We’re sad he won’t be around next fall as he turns his attention to playing professional baseball.When the Heisman finalists convene in New York City on December 8, Murray will be in attendance. He’ll likely garner the second-most votes.But even with Hale arguing his case, he isn’t beating out Tua.
LINCOLN, NE – NOVEMBER 24: Players for the Iowa Hawkeyes line up to take the field against the Nebraska Cornhuskers at Memorial Stadium on November 24, 2017 in Lincoln, Nebraska. (Photo by Steven Branscombe/Getty Images)Tyler Linderbaum joined the Iowa football program as a defensive tackle.Now, he may be the Hawkeyes’ center of the future.During preparation for Iowa’s Outback Bowl game against Mississippi State, Linderbaum made the move over to the other side of the line.By all accounts, it has taken quite well.The freshman was a three-star member of the Hawkeyes’ 2018 recruiting class, coming out of Solon High School in Iowa.247Sports‘ composite rankings had him at No. 409 overall in the class. He was ranked as the No. 28 defensive tackle in the country, and No. 2 recruit in Iowa.Tyler Linderbaum’s redshirt is intact, which means he could be a four-year starter at center for Iowa football.Offensive coordinator Brian Ferentz is pretty giddy about the results thus far, after some of the team’s bowl practices. From The Gazette:“I kind of felt like Jimmy Johnson on that,” Iowa offensive coordinator Brian Ferentz said Thursday. “I don’t know what they got back, but we got Linderbaum and that was pretty good.”That’s a reference to the trade former Dallas Cowboys coach Jimmy Johnson engineered with the Minnesota Vikings. The Vikings got running back Herschel Walker. The Cowboys got the building blocks to 1990s-era dominance.“I feel like he’s got some of the intangibles and on top some of the physical attributes that guys that have played well for us in the past at that position have had and he’s picked it up pretty quickly,” Ferentz said. “That’s a good start and we’re pretty excited about that.”Bowl games themselves are nice, especially those with large payouts. They’re also great experiences for players after a long season.Some coaches may argue that the 15 extra practices they give a team are the biggest benefit, though. Iowa is definitely making the most of its 15 practices this year.[The Gazette]
EL SEGUNDO, CA – SEPTEMBER 24: LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers laughs as he speaks on a set during the Los Angeles Lakers Media Day at the UCLA Health Training Center on September 24, 2018 in El Segundo, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)Urban Meyer’s final game with Ohio State will most likely draw the majority of the attention during the Rose Bowl, but it will also be the last time Parris Campbell plays for the Buckeyes.Although his senior season didn’t end with a chance to play in the College Football Playoff, Campbell has the chance to finish his collegiate career on the right note.While the Washington Huskies feature a physical defense, they’ll have their hands full trying to limit the star wideout. Campbell’s regular season totals of 79 receptions for 992 receiving yards and 11 touchdowns is extremely impressive.There is no question that many Ohio State fans will keep their eyes out on Dwayne Haskins, who might be playing his last game for the Buckeyes, but NBA star LeBron James is focused on watching Campbell on the gridiron.In an awesome post left on Twitter, James offered kind words to the senior leader.Here was James’ message for Campbell:Good luck today lil bro!! Finish your breakfast. @PCampbell21 #OH— LeBron James (@KingJames) January 1, 2019Well, it’s safe to say that James will be tuning in to see his hometown Buckeyes take the field.Ohio State and Washington will kick off at 5:00 p.m. ET from the Rose Bowl.The game will be on ESPN.