1. Of the 14 defensive tackles drafted by the NFL in the first round in the past five years, six came from the SEC. That’s what made me take notice when Kentucky head coach Joker Phillips praised sophomore Donte Rumph this week. “He’s 325 pounds, really strong, explosive, understands how to come out of his hips, use his hands, get off blocks,” Phillips said. “He’s what we see every week. It’s a look we hadn’t seen here in a long time.” The Wildcats need Rumph on Thursday against Western Kentucky’s top running back, Bobby Rainey.
2. UConn postponed its opener scheduled for Thursday night against Fordham because the National Guard is using the Huskies’ home, Rentschler Field in East Hartford, as a staging area during the Hurricane Irene cleanup. UConn hopes to play over the weekend, either at Rentschler or somewhere nearby. A UConn athletic department official said the Yale Bowl, 45 minutes away, is the first option. Why consider giving up the home date and revenue? The Huskies and Rams don’t share an open week.
3. You can’t praise Rutgers enough for the way in which the university has embraced Eric LeGrand as he continues to rehab from the spinal injury he suffered last season. It’s not just the fundraising, which has been considerable. It’s keeping LeGrand engaged. Rutgers announced Tuesday that LeGrand will be a part of the radio team for the 2011 Scarlet Knights. I’m willing to bet that head coach Greg Schiano will dismiss any praise for the extraordinary effort as praising him for breathing. Don’t let him wave it off.