In four match-ups in which Michigan State and Iowa have squared off as ranked teams, Iowa is 4-0.
Sparty and the Hawkeyes have a date in the Big Ten Championship game scheduled for Saturday night in Indianapolis. History is on Iowa's side heading into the contest. They're undefeated in the four match-ups when both teams were ranked, most recently demolishing the then-fifth-ranked Spartans to the tune of 37-6 in 2010. That's Michigan State's worst loss as a Top-5 team. Overall, Iowa leads the series 23-20-2.
Michigan senior OLB James Ross III has accepted an invitation to the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl.
For the 2015 campaign, Ross recorded 34 tackles (5.5 TFL) and a singular sack. The 6-foot-1, 227-pound senior's numbers might not jump off the charts, but TFY Draft Insider's Tony Pauline praised him over the summer for his explosivity, his in-game intelligence and his lack of fear. His best collegiate year came back in 2013, when he logged 85 tackles (5.5 for loss), 1.5 sacks and two forced fumbles. He's been significantly less productive over the last two seasons.
Washington sophomore LB Keishawn Bierria has "markedly improved his game and production this season," notes TFY Draft Insider's Tony Pauline.
Pauline made a shaded comparison to former Washington standout Shaq Thompson, writing that Bierria shares Thompson's "fierce and explosive demeanor" despite a relative lack of size. Bierria checks in at 6-foot-1, 220 pounds. For the 2015 season, he's recorded 70 tackles (7.5 for loss), 3.5 sacks and a forced fumble. Pauline sees him as a "defender [who] will stand out in a system which gives him a free run to the action."
UCLA junior WR Devin Fuller has accepted an invite to the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl.
Fuller logged 24 catches for 259 yards and three scores in nine games played during the 2015 campaign. Injuries forced the 5-foot-11, 195-pound junior to miss three games. He hasn't recorded more than 471 yards receiving in any of his three seasons with the Bruins, but will try to impress in postseason bowl play.
On his Monday radio show, former Georgia HC Mark Richt indicated that "about five" schools have contacted him.
While Richt declined to tick off the names of the schools, it's been previously reported that Maryland is among the suitors. Said Richt, "Yeah, there’s about five today. It’s kinda crazy. But I’m not sure, again, what I’m gonna do yet. But it’s nice to have opportunities and options." The longtime Bulldogs coach indicated that he would make a decision based on what's best for his family. Two possibilities include Missouri--where he interviewed in 2000 prior to taking the Georgia gig--and Miami. Richt's a Hurricane alumnus.
TFY Draft Insider's Tony Pauline noted that Ohio State redshirt sophomore OLB Darron Lee "set the tempo" of Saturday's 42-13 win over Michigan.
Pauline specifically pointed out several plays Lee made in the first quarter, including a hurry of Michigan graduate QB Jake Rudock on third down, a "dynamite play" in coverage and an open-field stop. He finished the game with seven tackles (one for loss) and a pair of QB hurries. Pauline called him "a three down defender with potential in a variety of schemes" and went on to write that from what he's heard over the last two months, there a good chance the 6-foot-2, 228-pound redshirt sophomore will enter the 2016 NFL Draft.
According to ESPN, Middle Tennessee and Western Michigan will play in the Popeyes Bahamas Bowl.
Middle Tennessee had already accepted the bowl bid. Now, the other side of the match-up is ready to be set, as Western Michigan will reportedly receive a bid later this week. Both teams finished out with 7-5 records during the 2015 campaign. There will be 41 bowls over the next month-plus.
Minnesota redshirt senior CB Briean Boddy-Calhoun has accepted an invite to the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl.
Boddy-Calhoun's coming in hot, too, having just returned an interception for a touchdown in Saturday's 31-21 loss to Wisconsin. It was his third interception of the season. In addition, the 5-foot-11, 188-pound redshirt senior has logged 43 tackles across nine games. He missed three contests due to a knee injury. In September, TFY Draft Insider's Tony Pauline voiced concern over Boddy-Calhoun's size and rawness in coverage, ultimately labeling him as a potential third-round selection.