Gator Bowl hangs in balance as Texas A&M deals with COVID outbreak
Officials at the TaxSlayer Gator Bowl were holding their breath after being told that one of the teams set to play in the New Years' Day bowl game, Texas A&M, is dealing with a COVID outbreak and may not have enough players to compete in the game.
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.
Texas A&M runs past North Carolina in Orange Bowl, 41-27
Texas A&M head coach Jumbo Fisher raises his hands during the trophy presentation at the Orange Bowl NCAA college football game, Saturday, Jan. 2, 2021, in Miami Gardens, Fla. Texas A&M defeated North Carolina 41-27. 14 North Carolina 41-27 on Saturday night — capping a winless bowl season for the Atlantic Coast Conference. North Carolina: The Tar Heels gave up 24 points in the fourth quarter, after allowing just 17 points in the first 45 minutes. North Carolina still could finish ranked for only the fourth time in the last 27 seasons. North Carolina: An ACC opponent likely awaits in Week 1 next season.
Texas A&M, North Carolina look forward, await Orange Bowl
13 CFP) in the 87th edition of the Orange Bowl. “I always say this: The Orange Bowl is as good as it gets,” Texas A&M coach Jimbo Fisher said Friday. Thing is, neither of those running backs — Michael Carter and Javonte Williams — chose to play in the Orange Bowl. “That’s 4,000 yards worth of offense and our leading tackler on defense and two captains,” North Carolina coach Mack Brown said. With them gone, it means even more pressure will be on North Carolina quarterback Sam Howell.
Snubbed by committee, Texas A&M will face UNC in Orange Bowl
It will be North Carolina’s first time in the Orange Bowl, and the first meeting between the schools. You want to be in it but at the same time, we're in the Orange Bowl, man." BOWL WINNERSThe Orange Bowl coaches certainly know how to end seasons with victories. Brown is 14-8 in the postseason, plus has been part of the Orange Bowl twice as an assistant coach. WELCOME BACKFor Fisher, it’s a return to a stadium where he’s gone 6-0 — including a pair of Orange Bowl victories.
CFP: Alabama-Notre Dame, Clemson-Ohio St as Aggies left out
Notre Dame was picked Sunday over Texas A&M for the final spot, ending what little drama there had been. Alabama, Notre Dame, Clemson and Ohio State have also held the first four spots in the AP Top 25 since Oct. 25. The Atlantic Coast Conference is the second league to have two teams in the playoff, joining the SEC in 2017. After sitting second in the CFP rankings for a month, Notre Dame was blown out 34-10 by Clemson in the ACC championship. Barta said the disparate number of games played by contenders — along with far fewer cross-conference games than usual —- was a challenge for the committee all season.
No. 5 Texas A&M makes last CFP case in 34-13 win over Vols
5 Texas A&M closed its case for inclusion in the College Football Playoff by mauling Tennessee by three touchdowns. Texas A&M, ranked third in the nation in third-down conversion percentage (55%), didn't punt in the first half. Texas A&M's advantage went to 17-7 when the Aggies turned a Bailey fumble into a 23-yard field goal by Seth Small. Tennessee: After the second game of the season, the Vols were tied with Notre Dame for the longest winning streak among FBS teams. A victory over winless Vanderbilt ended the skid, but the loss to Texas A&M ended the regular season on a sour note.
Mond, No. 5 Texas A&M finish strong in 31-20 win over Auburn
Kellen Mond passed for two touchdowns and ran for a third and the fifth-ranked Aggies scored 17 points in the fourth quarter of a come-from-behind 31-20 victory over Auburn on Saturday. Texas A&M coach Jimbo Fisher wasn't interested in speculating on how the win might affect his team's playoff chances. He completed 18 of 23 for 196 yards, highlighted by two TDs to Jalen Wydermyer, and ran for 60 yards. The Aggies ran for a season-high 313 yards and held a 16-minute advantage in time of possession. Auburn: Was outgained 168-21 in the fourth quarter.
Miami has 3 games PPD by virus; A&M on pause for 2nd week
So we can complain about this and this and that but, listen, we’re still getting to play football,” Fisher said. Last week, 15 FBS games were called off because of COVID-19, the most yet this season. Major college football conferences have been tweaking policies to provide their schools flexibility to schedule games on short notice. That probably won't work for LSU-Alabama, which was among four SEC games postponed last week. __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
Virus postponements hit SEC, Big Ten; 8 games across FBS
Among the three SEC games still on for this Saturday, Arkansas will visit No. Orgeron said he expects most of his players in quarantine due to contact tracing back next week. Texas A&M coach Jimbo Fisher said his team only had two positive cases as of Wednesday afternoon, but contact tracing had taken a toll. “Candidly, the numbers around contact tracing have emerged as one of our biggest challenges to playing. “The contact tracing has the potential to magnify even one positive test,” Sankey said.
Postponement, outbreaks: SEC takes a hit from COVID-19
The conference on Monday postponed Saturday’s game between No. 20 Auburn and Mississippi State because of positive COVID-19 cases and quarantining within the Bulldogs’ program. 5 Texas A&M paused in-person activities after a player and a staff member tested positive for COVID-19 after returning from a win at South Carolina. LSU is battling an outbreak that could put Saturday's game against No. ___More AP college football: https://apnews.com/Collegefootball and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25.
The Latest: Tom Izzo tests positive for COVID-19
(AP Photo/Michael Woods)The Latest on the effects of the coronavirus outbreak on sports around the world:___Michigan State basketball coach Tom Izzo has tested positive for COVID-19. 20 Auburn and Mississippi State because of positive COVID-19 and quarantining within the Bulldogs’ program that the school says left the team below the minimum threshold of 53 available scholarship athletes. 5 Texas A&M paused in-person activities on Monday after a player and a staff member tested positive for COVID-19 after the team returned from its weekend trip to South Carolina. ___Arkansas football coach Sam Pittman has tested positive for COVID-19 and could miss the Razorbacks’ game at No. Pittman was tested Sunday as part of the team’s regular protocol and learned Monday that his test came back positive.
Gators Breakdown: Game Reaction | Texas A&M 41 – Florida 38
Florida suffers their first defeat of the season at the hand of Texas A&M after another dismal performance by the Gators defense. David Waters is joined by Nick de la Torre (Gator Country) and Graham Hall (Gainesville Sun) to review what went wrong on defense and another outstanding showing on offense. Get Gators Breakdown merchandise at https://www.ebay.com/str/gatorsbreakdownLISTEN: Catch up on previous episodes of Gators BreakdownFollow David Waters on Twitter @GatorDave_SEC to stay plugged in, or click one of the following to tune in:Megaphone | Apple Podcasts | YouTube | Google Play | Stitcher
Florida defense can’t stop Texas A&M in 41-38 shootout loss
Florida quarterback Kyle Trask (11) pass down field during the first quarter of an NCAA college football game against Texas A&M, Saturday, Oct. 10, 2020. in College Station, Texas. (AP Photo/Sam Craft)COLLEGE STATION, Texas – Jimbo Fisher got his first win against a top-five opponent since taking over at Texas A&M. 21 Texas A&M beat fourth-ranked Florida 41-38 on Seth Small’s 26-yard field goal as time expired Saturday. Texas A&M grinded it out on its next drive, passing just once on a 10-play possession capped by a 3-yard TD from Spiller. Florida led 28-24 early in the fourth when Spiller struck again, running 19 yards for a touchdown on a fourth-and-2 play.
Gators Breakdown: Texas A&M Game Preview 2020
4 Florida Gators take their second road trip of the season against their first ranked opponent at No. David Waters is joined by Cole Thompson (Locked On Aggies Podcast) to preview the Aggies. Jimbo Fisher and Kellen Mond lead an offense that can give the Gators' defense more fits. Kyle Trask looks to continue his great year vs a defense that struggled to stop Alabama’s high-flying attack last week. Get Gators Breakdown merchandise at https://www.ebay.com/str/gatorsbreakdownLISTEN: Catch up on previous episodes of Gators BreakdownFollow David Waters on Twitter @GatorDave_SEC to stay plugged in, or click one of the following to tune in:Megaphone | Apple Podcasts | YouTube | Google Play | Stitcher
Lone Star Sadness: Horns, Aggies form Axis of Underachievers
At the top of USA Today's most recent revenue rankings for college athletic departments are Texas and Texas A&M. Texas and Texas A&M have everything needed to put out a national championship-level football program. The Aggies and Longhorns refuse to play each other but combine to form an Axis of Underachievers in the Lone Star State. In three games against Alabama under Fisher, the Aggies are 0-3 by a combined 144-75. For now, though, Texas and Texas A&M continue to prove the adage that money can't buy happiness.
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.
Week 5 Preview: Top-25 matchups in SEC; ACC title rematch
including the Deep South's Oldest Rivalry, highlights the fifth week of the college football season. 4 Georgia on Saturday night as the second month of the season starts, but only the second week of SEC play. The first of three games that decide the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy might have sneaked up on college football fans. The Falcons will play six conference games to go along with Navy and Army. ___Follow Ralph D. Russo at https://twitter.com/ralphDrussoAP and listen at http://www.westwoodonepodcasts.com/pods/ap-top-25-college-football-podcast/___More AP college football: https://apnews.com/Collegefootball and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25
Coach Norvell, Florida State set for opener vs Georgia Tech
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Mike Norvell has waited nine months to coach his first game at Florida State. After the coronavirus-disrupted offseason, Norvell believes the Seminoles are ready to play their first game Saturday when Georgia Tech visits Doak Campbell Stadium. He has some impressive performances as a true freshman in 2017, coach Jimbo Fisher’s final season with Florida State, and again last year. “The main thing that coach Norvell hit on every day was just responding,” Blackman said. “I’m super excited going into my final year at Florida State,” Wilson said.
Florida State fires head football coach after less than two seasons
TALLAHASSEE, Florida (CNN) - Florida State University fired head football coach Willie Taggart on Sunday, one day after the struggling Seminoles lost 27-10 to its in-state rival, the University of Miami. "I spoke to Coach Taggart this afternoon to let him know of our decision," said Florida State athletics director David Coburn. He was head coach there from 2010-2012 after serving as an assistant from 1999-2006. Florida State had only two full-time coaches from 1976 to 2017 -- Fisher from 2010 to 2019, and legendary coach Bobby Bowden, who served 37 years as head coach. Defensive line coach Odell Haggins, a 26-year veteran of the FSU coaching staff, will serve as the interim head coach for the rest of 2019.