Ohio State turns to J.T. Barrett, but will he be the Buckeyes' only QB?
Coaching against the top 25, Alabama's QBs and BYU's scheduling
1. The Wall Street Journal published a chart listing the records against AP top-25 teams of the head coaches in the five biggest revenue-producing conferences and Notre Dame. Good idea, especially for this shocker: Only 13 of the 65 coaches -- 20 percent -- had won more than they had lost. David Shaw of Stanford leads with a record of 14-4 (.778). Bob Stoops of Oklahoma is second at 50-23 (.685). Nick Saban of Alabama is 28-12 (.700) in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, but went only 22-23 (.489) while at LSU, Michigan State and Toledo. His overall record of 50-35 (.588) ranks seventh.
2. Most coaches looking for a starting quarterback like to name him a week or two before the season opener in order to get him more reps. Not Saban, who said on SiriusXM Wednesday that since Jacob Coker and Blake Sims are different types of quarterbacks, he likes making West Virginia prepare for both. Two things to consider: one, Coker still needs to learn the offense; two, Sims has a lot of respect in the Crimson Tide locker room. Saban has no interest in creating a divide.
3. BYU and Washington announced a home-and-home series in 2018-19. The Cougars don't schedule exclusively where Latter Day Saints members live, but it seems to help. Over the next six seasons, BYU will play 19 of their 29 away games (bowl tie-ins included) in eight of the 10 states that have the highest number of LDS members: Utah, California, Idaho, Arizona, Texas, Washington, Nevada and Florida.
Harvey Updyke's dunk tank
Auburn football fans might finally be able to seek their revenge against Harvey Updyke.
Updyke, the Alabama fan who infamously poisoned Auburn's beloved oak trees at Toomer's Corner in 2010, has agreed to appear at a charity event Sept. 27 in Mobile, Alabama, in which fans will be allowed to either dunk him in a dunking booth or throw pies at his face.
"He thought about it and thought about it," Updyke's wife, Elva, said. "His daughter said he needed to do it because it will show that he's not as big of a nut as some people believe. He told them they can do whatever they want to him if it will raise money for kids."
T.J. Hodges, an Alabama fan living near Chicago, is organizing the event to help raise money for the family of John Oliver, a boy from outside Mobile who died of cancer in July. Hodges started a nonprofit organization, Roses From Linda, after his mother passed away that helps raise money for family members to visit terminally ill patients before they die.
Hodges said he's still working out the particulars of the event, but former Alabama quarterback AJ McCarron, now with the NFL's Cincinnati Bengals, and his mother, Dee Dee Bonner, are helping organize and raise awareness for the charity event.
To read the rest of Mark Schlabach's story, click here.
#FauxPelini Breaks Silence
The most popular parody Twitter account in college football boasts 104,000 followers. The mystery man behind Faux Pelini visited with ESPN.com about the experience as a lampoon of Nebraska coach Bo Pelini.
Question: Where was the idea of Faux Pelini born?
Answer: When I first got involved with Twitter, I learned about comedy accounts and parody accounts, and there wasn't a Bo Pelini parody that had any traction. It seemed like there should be, given that this was back in 2010 during the height of what was thought to be his most colorful time as coach. There wasn't a grand design. I started making jokes, and it took off from there.
Question: How have you mastered the art of being funny in relation to Bo as a person and coach?
Answer: I pay attention to his demeanor in press conferences, on the sideline, of course, and try to create a caricature, which is just to take over the top little examples of what he does. I take it eight steps further and create this fake character. It takes to an extreme what people think he must be like, although we all know it isn't what he is. I think that's becoming clear now that he's not this one-dimensional, maniacal character. But Faux Pelini definitely is a one-dimensional, maniacal character. He hates stupid questions. He hates anybody questioning him. He hates anything irritating him.
To read the rest of Mitch Sherman's story, click here.