Oct 16, 2021; Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA;  Miami Hurricanes head coach Manny Diaz reacts in the fourth quarter at Kenan Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Miami’s Manny Diaz favored to be next NCAA coach fired

Move over, Sark, Manny Diaz is coming through.

Steve Sarkisian was installed Monday as the favorite by SportsBetting.ag to be the next NCAA football coach fired. That lasted all of an hour before the Texas Longhorns’ embattled coach was passed by Miami’s Diaz.

The Hurricanes became bowl eligible with Saturday night’s win over Virginia Tech, which fired coach Justin Fuente last week, but Miami (6-5, 4-3 ACC) is widely expected to part ways with Diaz.

Sarkisian is in his first season with the Longhorns, and only 10 months into his tenure. But the heat in Austin has ratcheted up with Texas (4-7, 2-6 Big 12) mired in a six-game losing streak, the program’s longest since 1956.

Diaz quickly moved to the 2-1 favorite to be the next NCAA coach fired at SportsBetting.ag, followed by Sarkisian at 3-1 and Georgia Tech coach Geoff Collins at 6-1.

Florida fired Dan Mullen over the weekend, and the Gators and Hurricanes could potentially be competing for a similar pool of candidates should Diaz be let go.

University of Louisiana coach Billy Napier’s name has been tied to a number of potential openings and is the 4-1 favorite by the sportsbook to be the next Gators coach. He’s followed by Lane Kiffin (5-1), who would be willing to leave Ole Miss for the Miami job, according to a report last week by Yahoo reporter Dan Wetzel.

Next NCAA Coach Fired Odds
Manny Diaz, Miami (2-1)
Steve Sarkisian, Texas (3-1)
Geoff Collins, Georgia Tech (6-1)
Scott Frost, Nebraska (7-1)
Jeff Scott, South Florida (7-1)
Dino Babers, Syracuse (7-1)
David Shaw, Stanford (8-1)
Mike Bloomgren, Rice (8-1)
Ken Niumatalolo, Navy (12-1)

Next Florida Gators Head Coach Odds
Billy Napier (4-1)
Lane Kiffin (5-1)
Mario Cristobal (6-1)
Bob Stoops (8-1)
James Franklin (8-1)
Mark Stoops (8-1)
Luke Fickell (9-1)
Eric Bieniemy (12-1)
Matt Campbell (12-1)
Bill O’Brien (16-1)
Dan Quinn (16-1)
Dave Clawson (16-1)
Deion Sanders (25-1)
Jamey Chadwell (25-1)
Urban Meyer (50-1)
Tim Tebow (100-1)

–Field Level Media

Nov 20, 2021; Morgantown, West Virginia, USA; West Virginia Mountaineers running back Leddie Brown (4) runs the ball and is tackled by many Texas Longhorns defenders during the first quarter at Mountaineer Field at Milan Puskar Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Ben Queen-USA TODAY Sports

West Virginia hands Texas its sixth straight loss

Jarret Doege passed for 290 yards and three touchdowns and Leddie Brown rushed for 158 yards and a score as West Virginia snapped a two-game skid with a 31-23 win over Texas on Saturday in Big 12 action in Morgantown, W.Va.

The wire-to-wire win kept bowl hopes alive for the Mountaineers (5-6, 3-6 Big 12) and extended the losing streak to six games for the Longhorns (4-7, 2-6), their longest since 1956.

Doege threw TD passes of 20 yards to Sam James, 14 yards to Winston Wright and 7 yards to Sean Ryan, the latter giving the Mountaineers a 28-17 lead late in the third quarter.

The Longhorns, playing without star running back Bijan Robinson, struggled in the first half offensively but rallied under backup quarterback Hudson Card to pull within 28-23 early in the fourth quarter.

A late 45-yard field goal by the Mountaineers’ Casey Legg and an interception on Texas’ ensuing drive clinched the win for West Virginia.

Card passed for 123 yards and a touchdown before being forced from the game late in the fourth quarter. Keilan Robinson had 111 yards and a 49-yard TD on nine carries for Texas.

The Mountaineers drove 75 yards on the game’s opening possession, with Doege finding James to establish the early lead. West Virginia added to its advantage with an 11-play, 80-yard march that was capped by Doege’s toss to Wright in the back corner of the end zone with 13:44 to play in the second quarter.

Texas didn’t have a first down until its fifth possession but that’s when it found its footing and the scoreboard on Robinson’s long TD run that closed its deficit to 14-7 with 8:34 to play until halftime.

Brown answered for the Mountaineers with a 2-yard TD run at the 2:34 mark of the second quarter.

Cameron Dicker’s 50-yard field goal pulled Texas to within 21-10 at the half.

Card hit Xavier Worthy for a 52-yard TD connection to cut the West Virginia advantage to 21-17 in the third quarter. But the Mountaineers responded with another long drive that ended with a touchdown pass from Doege to Ryan.

Texas got a 6-yard scoring run from Roschon Johnson with 12:25 to play but the Longhorns failed on a two-point conversion pass.

–Field Level Media

A referee checks on Texas running back Bijan Robinson (5) after an injury during the game against the Kansas Jayhawks on Saturday, Nov. 13, 2021.

Mlc Ut V Kansas 1594

Longhorns RB Bijan Robinson (elbow) done for season

Texas running back Bijan Robinson, the third-leading rusher in the Big 12 Conference, is done for the season after dislocating his elbow.

Longhorns coach Steve Sarkisian on Monday said cornerback Josh Thompson is also done for the season with a fractured fibula.

Robinson was injured Saturday in the Longhorns’ stunning 57-56 overtime loss to visiting Kansas.

Robinson rushed for 70 yards on 5.0 yards per carry and had a touchdown reception against the Jayhawks before exiting.

On the season, Robinson has rushed for 1,127 yards, behind only Breece Hall of Iowa State (1,164) and Abram Smith (1,203) of Baylor in the Big 12, and No. 9 in all of FBS. Robinson also had 26 catches for 295 yards and four receiving touchdowns, good for second on the Longhorns this season. He has 15 TDs overall.

Robinson rushed for 703 yards and four TDs as a freshman in 2020.

The Longhorns are expected to fill the void with Roschon Johnson, Keilan Robinson and Jonathon Brooks.

Thompson had 34 tackles and an interception in nine games.

Texas (4-6) has two games remaining and must win both to become bowl eligible.

–Field Level Media

Texas Longhorns running back Bijan Robinson (5) gets tackled by Iowa State Cyclones defensive back Anthony Johnson Jr. (26) after gaining a first down during the second quarter at Jack Trice Stadium, Nov. 6, 2021, in Ames, Iowa.

Breece Hall, stout defense carry Iowa St. to rout of Texas

Breece Hall ran for 136 yards and two scores, and the Iowa State defense did the rest as the Cyclones rolled to a 30-7 win over Texas on Saturday in Big 12 Conference play in Ames, Iowa.

Hall picked up his two TDs and 98 of his yards in the third quarter when the Cyclones (6-3, 4-2 Big 12) rallied from a 7-3 halftime deficit and swamped Texas.

The Longhorns, who came in averaging 447 yards per game and 39.4 points per game, didn’t come close to matching those benchmarks, amassing just 207 total yards.

Texas (4-5, 2-4) only gained six yards, had just 14 offensive snaps and punted four times during the pivotal third quarter. Texas lost a fourth straight game for the first time since 2010.

Brock Purdy was 27-of-38 passing for 252 yards for Iowa State. Xavier Hutchinson caught eight passes for 96 yards and threw a touchdown pass while Andrew Mevis added three field goals, including a 51-yarder to cap the scoring.

Hudson Card passed for 101 yards and a touchdown for Texas after entering in relief of the ineffective Casey Thompson. Bijan Robinson had 90 yards rushing and caught eight passes for 36 yards but fumbled twice, the second coming early in the fourth quarter after which he left the game with an injury.

Robinson fumbled on his first carry of the game. Iowa State then moved 32 yards in seven plays to set the table for Mevis’ 24-yard field goal and a 3-0 lead at the 12:27 mark of the first quarter.

Xavier Worthy pushed Texas to a 7-3 lead via a 4-yard scoring pass on a jet sweep with 5:29 left in the second quarter. The TD came at the end of a 14-play, 78-yard drive.

Iowa State outgained the Longhorns 180-126 in the first half, limiting Texas to 44 passing yards. Robinson had 65 yards on 11 carries in the half, outdueling Hall’s 17 yards on seven totes.

The Cyclones retook the lead on Hall’s 47-yard touchdown run that culminated the opening possession of the third quarter. They added to their advantage on Hutchinson’s 49-yard TD pass to Tarique Milton after he caught a backward pass from Purdy.

Hall’s 2-yard scoring run expanded Iowa State’s lead to 24-7 with 4 minutes to play in the third quarter.

–Field Level Media

Sep 18, 2021; Athens, Georgia, USA; Georgia Bulldogs fans help recruit high school player Arch Manning after Georgia defeated the South Carolina Gamecocks at Sanford Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Texas, Georgia frontrunners to land Arch Manning

Arch Manning will make his fifth and final campus visit for Clemson’s game against Florida State this weekend, but the Tigers are not favored to land the five-star prospect.

The frontrunner to sign the nephew of Eli and Peyton and grandson of Archie is the Texas Longhorns. Steve Sarkisian’s team was installed as the +300 favorite by SportsBetting.ag on Thursday to land Manning on signing day.

The second-shortest odds belong to Georgia (+350), followed closely behind by SEC rival Alabama (+400).

Manning currently stars for Isidore Newman in New Orleans and is the nation’s No. 1 recruit in the class of 2023. He has already visited Georgia (vs. South Carolina, Sept. 18), Alabama (vs. Ole Miss, Oct. 2), Texas (vs. Oklahoma St., Oct. 16) and Ole Miss (vs. LSU, Oct. 23).

Eli Manning and his father, Archie, played for Ole Miss. The Rebels retired Eli’s No. 10 jersey during the game and even painted “Manning” in the end zones.

Ole Miss is being offered at +450 to land Arch Manning, followed by LSU (+500), Clemson (+550) and Tennessee (+1000), which is where Peyton starred.

Arch Manning signing odds:
Texas +300
Georgia +350
Alabama +400
Ole Miss +450
LSU +500
Clemson +550
Tennessee +1000
SMU +1200

–Field Level Media

Apr 24, 2021; Austin, Texas, USA; Texas Longhorns linebacker Jake Ehlinger walks off the field after the Orange-White Texas Spring Game at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports

Family says Jake Ehlinger died of accidental overdose

The family of late Texas Longhorns linebacker Jake Ehlinger said Thursday he died of an accidental overdose on May 6 of what was said to be Xanax laced with fentanyl.

The younger brother of former Longhorns and current Indianapolis Colts quarterback Sam Ehlinger was found dead at age 20 in Austin, Texas.

“Today we are sad to share that we have learned that Jake was a victim of an accidental overdose of what was believed to be Xanax laced with toxic drugs including deadly Fentanyl,” the family said in its statement. “The spread of counterfeit pills is an ongoing and significant issue throughout our country, particularly in schools, colleges, and universities.

“As our family continues to process Jake’s death, we felt it was important to share these details with the hope that Jake will not have died in vain. We pray that sharing Jake’s story will help shed light on this problem and prevent other families from also tragically losing a loved one.”

The younger Ehlinger had finished his redshirt freshman season before his death, although he did not see game action.

“Being a Longhorn meant everything to him, and he truly embodied all that it means to be one,” said Longhorns head coach Steve Sarkisian in May. “In the short time we were able to get to know him, he always was a joy to be around and gave everything he had in workouts, meetings, practice and in life.

“This is a tragedy beyond measure, and as I told the team today, in a time like this all we can do is open our hearts, pull together and do our best to provide love and support to each other, especially to the Ehlinger family.”

Ross Ehlinger, Sam and Jake’s father, died at age 46 in 2013 after suffering a heart attack during a triathlon in San Francisco.

–Field Level Media

Oct 2, 2021; Fort Worth, Texas, USA; Texas Longhorns quarterback Casey Thompson (11) shakes hands with fans after the game against the TCU Horned Frogs at Amon G. Carter Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Casey Thompson leads No. 21 Texas against No. 6 Oklahoma

Casey Thompson grew up immersed in Oklahoma football.

Thompson’s father, Charles, starred at quarterback for the Sooners in the late 1980s, leading Oklahoma to a pair of wins over archrival Texas. His brother, Kendal, played quarterback for the Sooners nearly a decade ago.

But Saturday, Casey Thompson will be on the other side of one of college football’s top rivalries, starting at quarterback for the No. 21 Longhorns when they take on the No. 6 Sooners in Dallas’ Cotton Bowl.

“Obviously, everyone knows my story. I’m from Oklahoma and I play for Texas, and so that alone is unique,” Thompson said. “But I’m just trying to focus on the matchup, focus on the game play, and focus on just keeping this offense and this team focused, and being able to just quiet out the noise.”

Thompson was heavily recruited by the Sooners in the 2018 class, especially late in the process after Cameron Rising flipped from Oklahoma to Texas. But Thompson chose to stick with the Longhorns, both in signing even after Rising’s flip and then sitting behind Sam Ehlinger for his first three seasons until he took over for Ehlinger in the Longhorns’ 2020 Alamo Bowl win over Colorado.

Thompson’s candidacy to take over permanently for Ehlinger got a boost in the bowl when he threw for four touchdowns in the second half. Following preseason camp, Hudson Card earned the starting nod from new coach Steve Sarkisian, who then turned to Thompson to take over the starting role in Game 3.

The Longhorns (4-1, 2-0 Big 12) have been much better offensively since Thompson took over, averaging 558 yards of total offense in the three games the junior has started, more than 200 more than they averaged in the first two games with Card starting.

While Thompson has played a big role in the Longhorns’ offense surge, running back Bijan Robinson has been perhaps the biggest reason for Texas’ improvement. Robinson has rushed for 480 yards over the last three games.

Oklahoma (5-0, 2-0) has flirted with danger in all four of its games against Football Bowl Subdivision opponents, winning each by a touchdown or less.

One of the Sooners’ issues has been getting their defense off the field. Opponents have converted just 34.7% of their third downs, but have attempted 19 fourth-down conversions — tied for most in FBS — and have converted 12 of them.

“We’ve had a number of time we’ve gotten opponents down to third down early in the series, and you’ve got to capitalize on those especially early in the game,” Sooners coach Lincoln Riley said. “It’s so important as far as setting a tone that way. We’ve done so many good things defensively this year, but we haven’t played our best early.”

Oklahoma has won the last three meetings between the teams (including the 2018 Big 12 Championship Game), and has won four of the last five in the annual October clash at the State Fair of Texas.

It will be the first taste of the rivalry for Sarkisian, who replaced Tom Herman in January.

“I love the pomp and pageantry of college football, I love the history, I love the nostalgia,” Sarkisian said. “To think this is the 117th time these two schools are meeting — that’s a crazy number, you know? So from that aspect of it, the State Fair, all that stuff, I’m looking forward to it.”

–Field Level Media

Dec 12, 2020; Columbia, Missouri, USA; A detailed view of a Georgia Bulldogs helmet during the second half against the Missouri Tigers at Faurot Field at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

Top 2023 QB Arch Manning lines up college visits; Georgia next

The dance card is filling up for five-star quarterback prospect Arch Manning.

The latest in the line of Manning quarterbacks, the No. 1 player in the Class of 2023 will be at Georgia on Saturday to watch the Bulldogs take on South Carolina in a Southeastern Conference showdown, 247Sports reported Thursday.

After that, per the report, Manning will be in Tuscaloosa when Alabama hosts Ole Miss on Oct. 2. He visited Alabama in the summer.

Manning also was in Texas during the summer, and he’ll return to Austin to watch the Longhorns play Oklahoma State on Oct. 16 in a Big 12 contest. Clemson, another summer stop, is on the agenda for the Oct. 30 game vs. Florida State, per 247Sports.

He has plans for Oct. 23, too. He’ll be at Ole Miss, the alma mater of grandfather Archie, dad Cooper and his Uncle Eli.

Ole Miss will retire Eli Manning’s number that day when the Rebels play LSU. The younger Manning seems to have some interest in the family lineage school.

“Oxford is amazing,” Manning told 247Sports. “Coach (Jeff) Lebby and Coach (Lane) Kiffin are some of the smartest offensive minds I’ve ever met. I met with Coach Kiffin it seems like four hours and he blew me away with his knowledge and they’re going to put up some points this year and I’m excited to watch them.”

The 6-foot-4 Manning said he doesn’t expect to make a decision until spring or summer, well after his third season as the starter at Isidore Newman in New Orleans is over. Other schools, including LSU, Stanford and Tulane, also could get looks.

He led Isidore Newman to an 18-3 record over his first two seasons.

“It’s so hard to know or tell, I’m just taking it one day at a time,” he said of his choice. “I want to like the culture because coaches and assistant coaches move and go everywhere. I want good guys around me and good coaches and a good town and a good education.”

–Field Level Media

Sep 11, 2021; Fayetteville, Arkansas, USA; Texas Longhorns quarterback Casey Thompson (11) rushes in the second half against the Arkansas Razorbacks at Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium. Arkansas won 40-21. Mandatory Credit: Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports

Texas to start QB Casey Thompson vs. Rice

Junior Casey Thompson jumped Hudson Card on the depth chart and was named the starting quarterback for Texas on Monday.

Head coach Steve Sarkisian made the move official as the Longhorns work to move past a 40-21 loss to Arkansas on Saturday and prepare for Rice.

“I think it will be good for Hudson to take a little bit of a deep breath after last week’s game,” Sarkisian said on Monday. “It will be a great opportunity for Casey to step in compete with the ones early on in the ballgame. So, feel good about that.”

Sarkisian said Card will remain part of the game plan but intends to let the flow of the game dictate where and how he’ll use his quarterbacks.

Thompson led two scoring drives late in the Arkansas game, and Sarkisian acknowledged he didn’t face tight coverage with the Razorbacks dropping multiple defenders.

Thompson had two rushing touchdowns and a 44-yard run, the longest of his career, against Arkansas.

Thompson also generated points in the opener against Louisiana with drives that led to a touchdown and field goal in that game.

Sarkisian said Card had anxious feet in the pocket, contributing to his 61 passing yards (8 of 15) in the loss to Arkansas.

Thompson, a redshirt junior in his fourth season, has played in nine career games. Card is a redshirt freshman.

Rice enters Saturday’s game with the Longhorns at 0-2 after losses to Arkansas and Houston.

–Field Level Media

Sep 4, 2021; Austin, Texas, USA; Texas Longhorns tight end Cade Brewer (80) hugs quarterback Hudson Card (1) after catching a touchdown pass in the first half of the game against the Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports

Hudson Card shines in debut as No. 21 Texas routs No. 23 Louisiana

Hudson Card passed for 224 yards and two touchdowns and ran for another score in his first collegiate start as No. 21 Texas began the Steve Sarkisian era with a 38-18 win over No. 23 Louisiana on Saturday afternoon in the season-opener for both teams in Austin, Texas.

Card was 14-of-21 passing and connected with six different receivers while playing three quarters for the Longhorns (1-0). Bijan Robinson ran for 103 yards and a touchdown and caught four passes for 73 yards and another score in Texas’ romp while Jordan Whittington led all receivers with seven catches for a career-best 113 yards.

The Longhorns’ defense limited Louisiana to 359 yards, 179 of which came in the final 12:24 of the game after things were out of reach. Dual-threat Ragin’ Cajuns’ quarterback Levi Lewis passed for 282 yards and a scoring pass late, combining with Kyren Lacy on a 19-yard touchdown.

Louisiana (0-1) got on the board first via a 37-yard field goal by Kenneth Almendares at the end of a 42-yard drive with 8:16 to play in the first quarter. Texas answered with an 18-yard TD pass from Card to Robinson at the 2:25 mark of the first that culminated an 11-play, 70-yard march.

The Longhorns added to their lead when Card hit Cade Brewer on a 6-yard touchdown pass with two minutes to play before halftime. Almendares booted a career-long 48-yard field goal on the final play of the half to allow the Ragin’ Cajuns to pull to within 14-6 at the break.

Robinson stutter-stepped his way to a 7-yard TD run on the opening drive of the third quarter to push Texas’ lead to 21-6. Louisiana responded on the ensuing possession with a 27-yard touchdown run around right end by Chris Smith before Almendares’ extra point was blocked by the Longhorns’ Keondre Coburn.

Card’s 3-yard scoring run expanded Texas’ advantage to 28-12 with 2:43 to play in the third quarter. Whittington’s 14-yard catch-and-run TD from backup quarterback Casey Thompson early in the fourth quarter removed any real notion of a comeback from Louisiana.

Texas’ Cameron Dicker booted a 49-yard field goal midway through the fourth quarter to provide the final margin of victory.

–Field Level Media