North Texas: A red-shirt freshman, Riley Dodge, will likely play quarterback for North Texas this season.
Dodge's father, Todd, is North Texas's head coach. Since Todd Dodge took over before the 2007 season, the team has gone 3-21, and hasn't hd a winning year since 2004. North Texas will enter spring practice with Dodge and junior back-up Nathan Tune competing for the starting job. Tune threw 13 passes in six games last season. Dodge threw two passes on trick plays while playing wide receiver before suffering a concussion that ended his season.
Iowa State: Cyclone fans are hoping new coach Paul Rhoads, formerly the defensive coordinator at Auburn, can lead the program back to respectability.
Iowa State's win total has declined by one in each of the past three seasons, leading to a disappointing 2-10 finish last year. Somehow, that led Gene Chizik to getting the Auburn head coaching job.
Iowa State returns seven offensive starters, including quarterback Austen Arnaud, who threw for over 2,800 yards last year. Still, the Cyclones were held to 20 or fewer points in five games last season.
Rutgers: Expect the Scarlet Knights to be a Big East player again next year.
The team returns 16 starters and 48 letterwinners next season. Rutgers finished last season 8-5 overall and won seven consecutive games to end the season, including the program's third consecutive bowl victory with a 29-23 win over NC State in the PapaJohns.com Bowl. The Scarlet Knights conclude spring drills with the Scarlet-White Game on April 18.
Tulane: Opens spring practice on March 31 and concludes on April 25.
There is already an interesting story emerging at Tulane. Tulane defensive end Reggie Scott has been granted a sixth year of eligibility by the NCAA as a result of a medical hardship, the school announced today. He will return for his final season in 2009.
Scott, a 6-4, 260-pound defensive end from Charlotte, N.C., earned honorable mention All C-USA merits for the second straight year last season. He started 11 games and registered 31 tackles (25 solo), including 6.5 stops for lost yardage (35), and two sacks. He recorded his first career interception vs. #14 East Carolina, finished with a season-high six stops (5 unassisted) at Tulsa and recorded quarterback sacks vs. #14 East Carolina and SMU.
A three-year letterwinner and two-year starter, has played in 32 career games with 23 starts and boasts career numbers of 56 tackles (44 solo), 16.5 stops for lost yardage, seven sacks, three forced fumbles, one fumble recovery and one interception.
In his first career game as a true freshman in 2004, Scott had two quarterback pressures before suffering a season-ending injury in the opener against Mississippi State and received a medical hardship for the season. He played in seven games as a redshirt freshman in 2005, but suffered a season-ending injury at LSU during the third game of the year in 2006, and received a second medical hardship.
"We are excited for Reggie and elated that he'll be back on our defensive line this fall," Tulane head coach Bob Toledo said. "He will provide us with great experience and quality depth at the defensive end position because we also return Logan Kelley and Adam Kwentua, so it gives us the ability to move a back-up defensive end to defensive tackle and give us more depth on our defensive line."
Tulane went 2-10, 1-7 Conference USA last year.
Air Force: Head football coach Troy Calhoun will join four other FBS head football coaches to travel to the Middle East to visit U.S. troops this spring on the second annual Under Armour Coaches Tour.
Calhoun will join Mack Brown of Texas, Jim Tressel of Ohio State, UCLA's Rick Neuheisel and Houston Nutt of Mississippi, along with former Auburn coach Tommy Tuberville on the tour, which will meet and greet American military personnel in Afghanistan, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates. The tour is scheduled to depart McConnell Air Force Base in Wichita, Kan., on May 28 and return to the United States June 4.
The trip is coordinated through Armed Forces Entertainment, a Department of Defense agency, and Morale Entertainment.
Eastern Michigan: Army's 2009 season-opening opponent began practice this week under first-year coach Ron English, the former defensive coordinator at Louisville and Michigan. Eastern Michigan last had a winning season in in 1995, 6-5. The team concludes spring drills with a scrimmage on April 19.
Army opponents Spring Practice Tour: Part II
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