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Pac-12 Notes


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Pac-12 Notes


October 16th

… Foe Pause … 

Washington loses two starters for the season

From ESPN … Washington’s loss to Arizona State on Saturday, its first of the season, was even more damaging than it first seemed.

The Huskies lost a pair of starters, left tackle Trey Adams and cornerback Jordan Miller, to season-ending injuries, coach Chris Petersen announced Monday. Adams tore the ACL in his right knee, while Miller suffered a broken ankle.

Adams came into the season billed as a potential All-American after being named first-team All-Pac-12 as a sophomore last season. He has started 31 of Washington’s past 34 games, dating back to his true freshman season. Senior Andrew Kirkland is expected to start in his place.

Miller’s loss comes while the Huskies are already without fellow starting cornerback Byron Murphy, though Murphy is supposed to return at some point this year. Miller and Murphy are both first-year starters.

With USC’s 28-27 win over Utah, Trojans may be the Pac-12’s best hope for a playoff bid

From CBS Sports … Utah’s Pac-12 South run took a big hit, and that’s great for USC: Since joining the Pac-12, the Utes have been one of the tougher outs for USC in division play, and USC’s path back to playoff contention starts with winning the division and playing for the conference title. Utah, like USC, came into the game with one conference loss to a team from the Pac-12 North. Saturday’s game decided a crucial head-to-head advantage in the standings and delivered a big hit to Utah’s run at winning the Pac-12 South.

USC’s ground game is the soul of the offense: When Sam Darnold is in the zone and in rhythm with USC’s wide receivers, it’s easy to see why the NFL Draft scene is drooling about his potential. But that group sputters sometimes, and the Trojans have to rely on the ground game for large chunks of yards during key moments of close games. Ronald Jones II is a proven hard runner with great vision, and freshman Vavae Malepeai has been huge in two games of increased action with Stephen Carrnhurt. While there’s a future NFL quarterback under center, the soul of USC, and the part of their game that has been the most consistent, is running the dang ball.

Continue reading story here


October 15th

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Pac-12 lines … Colorado a 10.5-point underdog to Washington State

From 5Dimes.com

Pac-12 lines:

– Utah is a 10.5-point favorite at home against Arizona State (1:30 or 2:00 p.m., MT, Fox)

– UCLA is a 6.5-point favorite at home against Oregon (2:00 p.m., MT, Pac-12 Networks)

– No. 11 USC is a 4.0-point underdog on the road against No. 13 Notre Dame (5:30 p.m., MT, NBC)

– California is a 1.0-point underdog at home against Arizona (6:00 p.m., MT, Pac-12 Networks)

– No. 15 Washington State is a 10.5-point favorite at home against Colorado (8:45 p.m., MT, ESPN)

– Idle … Washington, Oregon State; Stanford …


October 14th

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Pac-12 games provide shocking results

… “Sun Devils use strong defense to stun No. 5 Huskies 13-7” … From ESPN

… “USC rallies, then holds on to beat Utah 28-27” … From ESPN

… “Big game by Love leads No. 23 Stanford past Oregon 49-7” … from ESPN

… “Wildcats run wild on Bruins in 47-30 win” … from ESPN


October 13th

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Washington State falls hard, 37-3, to California

From ESPN … Ross Bowers found a way to overshadow California’s opportunistic defense that forced seven turnovers and had nine sacks.

An acrobatic flip into the end zone will do just that.

Bowers scored on the touchdown leap and the Golden Bears used a dominant defensive performance to stun No. 8 Washington State 37-3 Friday night for their first win in 14 years against a top 10 team.

“I didn’t think I could go left or right so why not over the top,” Bowers said. “Luckily I was able enough to land safely and all that stuff.”

Camryn Bynum had two of California’s five interceptions against Luke Falk, and the Bears (4-3, 1/3 Pac-12) overwhelmed the Cougars (6-1, 3-1) for a signature win under first-year coach Justin Wilcox.

Cal was just 1-52-1 against top 10 teams since 1978 with the only win coming over No. 3 Southern California in 2003 before breaking through against mistake-prone Washington State.

“There’s no bright spot. We were pathetic,” Cougars coach Mike Leach said. “We’re a bunch of pathetic front-runners.”

Continue reading story here


October 12th

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Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott firmly opposed to paying student athletes

From CBS Sports … The ongoing debate of whether college athletes receive proper compensation for what they provide to their university seems to never go away, and Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott deposited his two cents on Thursday.

The ninth-year commissioner said at Pac-12 basketball media day that, in light of the massive college basketball scandal that has resulted in the arrest of several assistant coaches and Louisville’s Rick Pitino losing his job, he is firmly entrenched as a proponent of “amateurism.”

… Just last month, he wrote an op-ed for AZCentral.com explicitly stating that he’s against players receiving anything more than the value of a scholarship, ancillary benefits associated with that scholarship and the full cost of attendance stipend.

“Paying students a salary to play sports or allowing them to join a union would fundamentally change college sports as we know it,” he wrote. “It would push many sports that don’t generate revenue toward extinction.”

Players began receiving full cost of attendance stipends during the 2015-16 school year to cover ancillary expenses associated with attending college like travel to and from their hometowns, spending money, etc. It’s a figure that, until that point, was used to give perspective to current and prospective students on what typical students might spend at the school in addition to tuition.

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Pac-12 forms Task Force after NCAA forms Commission on College Basketball

From the Pac-12 … Pac-12 Conference Commissioner Larry Scott announced this morning the formation of a Pac-12 Task Force that will propose reforms to protect student-athletes and address certain systemic issues threatening college athletics. The announcement comes on the heels of the NCAA’s formation of a Commission on College Basketball yesterday, and is designed to both support that national effort as well as to explore more broadly related issues and how they could be impacting other sports.

“We believe strongly in the educational mission of college sports and its positive impact on student-athletes,” said Commissioner Scott. “We are committed to taking the concrete action steps to combat threats to the integrity of college athletics, and to both protecting our student-athletes and ensuring fair competition for the athletic programs in which they participate. The goal of our Pac-12 Task Force is to tackle the issues that have been raised in men’s college basketball and to suggest reforms that ensure that we stay ahead of potential more far reaching issues, in particular in the area of recruitment across college sports where in many cases the influence of third parties is growing.”

The Pac-12 Task Force will be composed of experts from both within and outside the conference, including coaches, athletic administrators, current and former student-athletes, and members of commercial entities involved in recruitment of student-athletes, among other stakeholder groups.

Initial members of the Pac-12 Task Force include Pac-12 athletic directors Dan Guerrero and Chris Hill, both of whom have extensive experience on the NCAA men’s basketball committee, where Guerrero served as chair; former basketball coach Mike Montgomery who is also serving on the NCAA Commission on College Basketball; former football student-athlete, NFL player, and FOX Sports analyst Charles Davis; and highly respected administrator Tom Jernstedt. Additional members will be named in the very near future. As part of its work, the Pac-12 Task Force will meet with outside entities involved in all aspects of the recruitment of student-athletes.

The Pac-12 Task Force mandate will include four areas:

  1. Education & Issues Identification – Educating university leadership and the conference as a whole on the college basketball and broader environment, and the issues that pose a threat to college athletics and to student-athlete welfare;
  2. Best Practices and Pac-12 Policy Recommendations – Identifying best practices and other actions that the Pac-12 can take forward to ensure student-athlete welfare and the integrity of college sports;
  3. System Reform Recommendations – Identifying and proposing policy recommendations to the NCAA to reform college basketball and college athletics on a national level; and
  4. Application of Learnings to Recruitment in Sports Beyond Basketball – Bringing forward proposals to apply Task Force learnings to address in particular recruiting in other sports, where the influence of third parties is growing.

The Pac-12 Task Force will issue findings and recommendations to the Pac-12 CEO Group by the end of the first quarter of 2018. The final report with a series of recommendations for both the Pac-12 Conference and the NCAA will be shared with the NCAA Commission on College Basketball in advance of their own final recommendations, as well as the national collegiate community.

Jon Wilner discusses the possibility of Jim Leavitt to Oregon State

Related … “Now is the perfect time for Oregon State to find a new identity by running the option” … from CBS Sports

From the San Jose Mercury News … Leavitt is a former head coach who understands limited resources. He built the South Florida program from nothing — it didn’t exist when he was hired — and eventually achieved multiple years of success in the Big East.

He was on Jim Harbaugh’s staff with the 49ers, did a marvelous job in two years as the defensive coordinator at Colorado and is off to an encouraging start in Eugene.

He’s highly respect as a strategist and developer of talent; he could sell recruits on sending seven CU starters to NFL training camps this summer (as draft picks or free agents) and on his experience coaching Patrick Willis.

Hiring him would hurt Oregon, which is always a plus in Corvallis.

Also … and this seems central to OSU’s longer-term prospects … Leavitt would be different.

When you’re in Corvallis or Pullman or Tucson or most places in the Pac-12, being different has advantages. It has advantages in attracting recruits and advantages on Saturdays.

Leavitt would be the only Pac-12 head coach in the Pacific Northwest with a defensive background. That was the case with Andersen, but he didn’t hire the right staff (according to his own text messages) and couldn’t make it work.

Continue reading story here


October 11th

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List of candidates for Oregon State job includes CSU, Wyoming and Air Force coaches

From the Oregonian … With Oregon State football coach Gary Andersen‘s sudden departure this week, it’s now up to Beavers athletic director Scott Barnes to lead a national search for Andersen’s replacement. Here’s a list of potential candidates who could be on Barnes’ radar.

Mike Bobo, Colorado State head coach

Bobo has gone 18-14 at Colorado State and his Rams beat Oregon State 58-27 to open the 2017 season. The 43-year-old former Georgia assistant may be looking to ultimately go back to the SEC, like his predecessor Jim McElwain (Florida). But Bobo has found success out West and is regarded as one of the better offensive minds in college football.

Craig Bohl, Wyoming head coach

Craig Bohl led North Dakota State to three consecutive FCS national championships from 2011-13 and is 17-26 in three-plus seasons at Wyoming. The Cowboys have not yet reached lofty expectations in Bohl’s fourth year. However, the historic sustained success Bohl had at North Dakota State shows he’s a proven winner. He won Mountain West Coach of the Year in 2016 and has brought in a top pro prospect in quarterback Josh Allen. Styles would clash, as Bohl runs a pro-style offense and 4-3 defense.

Troy Calhoun, Air Force head coach

Roseburg High School graduate Troy Calhoun has been head coach at Air Force since 2007, appearing in nine bowl games and compiling an overall record of 78-57. Calhoun was a quarterback at Air Force in the 1980s under legendary coach Fisher DeBerry and then took over for DeBerry in 2007. The Falcons are off to a 1-4 start but Calhoun’s continued success with the complex triple-option offense under such unique circumstances make him an intriguing option.

… Check out other candidates here …


October 10th

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More questions than answers over Gary Andersen’s sudden departure from OSU

From the Oregonian … The ripple effects of Andersen’s decision to walk away six games into his third season and leave more than $12 million on the table will be long-lasting. And as the Beavers pick up the pieces for the second half of the season under interim coach Cory Hall, unanswered questions remained Monday about why Andersen and OSU split so suddenly.

The Oregonian/OregonLive reported that Andersen grew increasingly discouraged as the results just didn’t materialize and multiple sources told The Oregonian/OregonLive of internal dissension among some members of the assistant coaching staff.

OSU athletic director Scott Barnes on Monday said the coach was not in position to be fired for cause, did not have any serious health issues or other family-related issues. He would not elaborate on their conversations leading up to the mutual agreement, only saying those discussions “evolved” over time.

Barnes, a friend of Andersen since hiring him at Utah State before the 2009 season, publicly supported the coach less than two weeks earlier.

… “It was a shock honestly,” running back Ryan Nall said. “Coach A, when you see him get emotional like that, it’s usually about family. That was my first reaction when that happened: did something happen to his family? Lo and behold, something did. We are his family.”

Nall, one of 23 players remaining from the Mike Riley era, said the day was similar to when Riley surprisingly departed for Nebraska in 2014. He talked about players grieving, as tributes from players to Andersen continued to pour in over social media.

Continue reading story here

From the Corvallis Gazette-Times

Here are some reactions by players on their Twitter accounts:

Running back Thomas Tyner: “GA is one of those guys you want to keep in contact with after football. Hurts to see him go, truly going to miss this man. Thank you for the opportunity you have given me. Love you coach!”

Linebacker Kee Whetzel: “He should NOT be gone … he was NEVER the problem. …”

Safety Jalen Moore: “Always kept it real since day 1. It never was about the money. Appreciate you for believing in me when I had nothing. Love u Coach A.”

… Now the Beavers head into the final six games of the season without a coach who for many was the only head coach they had played for in college.

“It’s a difficult spot to be in,” Nall said. “Nobody likes to lose a head coach right in the middle of the season, literally in the middle of the season, so all we can do is play for him and we said that in our meeting (Monday): play for him, play for one another, continue to fight, don’t give up. And just because the season’s not going the way we want it to doesn’t mean we can’t turn it around. There’s six games left and we can still win out and still go to a bowl game.”

Continue reading story here


October 9th

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Gary Andersen out as head coach at Oregon State

… First reaction … Couldn’t they have waited one more week? … 

Second reaction … Interesting how the parties agreed to part ways. Andersen gives up guaranteed contract through 2021, basically walking away from $12 million … 

Related … “Gary Andersen vowed he’d walk if he couldn’t win at Oregon State — and he just walked” … from the Oregonian

Press release from Oregon State … Oregon State University Vice President and Director of Athletics Scott Barnes announced Monday that head football coach Gary Andersen and the school have agreed to mutually part, effective immediately.

“I thank Gary for his many contributions to our student-athletes, OSU Athletics and Oregon State University,” Barnes said. “OSU football has advanced significantly in many ways during Gary’s tenure here, including in our facilities and student-athlete academic performance. This program is poised for success on and off the field.”

Oregon State University and Andersen have mutually agreed to release each other from all future contract obligations and payments, which were guaranteed through the 2021 football season.

“After many discussions with Scott, waiving my contract is the correct decision and enables the young men and the program to move forward and concentrate on the rest of this season,” Andersen said. “Coaching is not about the mighty dollar. It is about teaching and putting young men in a position to succeed on and off the field. Success comes when all parties involved are moving in the same direction.”

“This is an exceptionally difficult time for me, personally and professionally,” Barnes said. “I have known Gary for many years and respect him highly as a person, my friend, a head football coach and an incredible leader of young men. The timing of this is very difficult; however it is the best for all involved.”

“Coach Andersen’s decision to waive his remaining compensation is unprecedented in major college athletics,” Barnes said. “His decision is made for the right reasons and values, and it speaks volumes about the kind of honorable person that Gary Andersen is.”

Barnes said he immediately would undertake a national search to appoint a head coach for the 2018 season, and would utilize a search firm to identify and review candidates. He and OSU President Ed Ray will ultimately decide who will coach the Beavers.

In the interim, Barnes has appointed current Beaver assistant coach Cory Hall to lead the program.

Hall is in his second season with the team after joining Oregon State in January 2016. He has college coaching experience at Washington State University, Weber State University and the University of Wisconsin. In addition, he is a six-year NFL veteran, having played for the Atlanta Falcons and Cincinnati Bengals. Hall graduated from Fresno State University where he also played football. In his OSU tenure, he has coached former Beaver Treston Decoud, a fifth round draft pick last April by the Houston Texans, and current All-America cornerback Xavier Crawford.

Continue reading story here

RelatedCory Hall coaching resume

2016-present Oregon State – Cornerbacks
2015 Weber State – Secondary
2014 Wisconsin – Graduate Assistant/Defense
2011-13 Clovis North High School (Calif.) – Head Coach (3 division/section titles)
2008-11 Clovis North High School (Calif.) – Assistant Coach
2006 Washington State  — Graduate Assistant/Defense

ESPN Pac-12 Power Rankings … a glimmer of hope for CU fans

From ESPN … Wazzu announced its presence last week with its win against USC, but its 33-10 victory over Oregon reaffirmed the Cougars are for real. It’s the Huskies and Cougars atop the power rankings for a second consecutive week, and it would take a significant upset for that to change anytime soon.

1. Washington … 2. Washington State … 3. USC … 4. Stanford … 5. Utah … 6. UCLA … 7. Oregon … 8. Arizona

9. California (3-3, 0-3): The Bears are looking less impressive by the week, as are their nonconference wins against North Carolina (1-5) and Ole Miss (2-3).  … CU hosts the Bears October 28th

10. Colorado (3-3, 0-3): They’re a few plays from being 5-1, but the Buffs are in the same spot in the Pac-12 standings as Cal and Oregon State.

11. Arizona State (2-3, 1-1): With Washington, Utah and USC upcoming on the schedule, ASU can make some noise … or it can fall into obscurity. … CU takes on the Sun Devils November 4th

12. Oregon State (1-5, 0-3): The Beavers’ 38-10 loss to USC was their narrowest margin of defeat this season. Let that sink in. … CU plays the Beavers this weekend


October 8th

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Pac-12 lines: Colorado a 12.5-point favorite over Oregon State

From 5Dimes.com ….

Pac-12 lines:

— No. 8 Washington State – a 14.0-point favorite on the road at California (Fri., 8:30 p.m., MT, ESPN)

— Colorado – a 12.5-point favorite on the road at Oregon State (Sat., 2:00 p.m., MT, Pac-12 Networks)

— No. 13 USC – a 13.0-point favorite at home against Utah (Sat., 6:00 p.m., MT, ABC)

— Arizona – a 1.0-point favorite at home against UCLA (7:00 p.m., MT, Pac-12 Networks)

— No. 5 Washington – a 17.0-point favorite on the road at Arizona State (8:45 p.m., MT, ESPN)

— No. 23 Stanford – an 11.0-point favorite at home against Oregon (9:00 p.m., MT, FS1)

Washington State enters Top Ten in both polls

Washington State defeated Oregon on the road, 33-10, earning its first top ten ranking of the season. Washington moved up a spot, taking position No. 5, while USC also moved up a spot, to No. 13.

The fourth Pac-12 school in the AP poll this week is Stanford, which defeated Utah, 23-20, and replaced the Utes in the poll, entering at No. 23.

The Associated Press poll:

1. Alabama
2. Clemson
3. Penn State
4. Georgia
5. Washington … +1
6. TCU
7. Wisconsin
8. Washington State … +3
9. Ohio State
10. Auburn
11. Miami (Fla.)
12. Oklahoma
13. Southern California … +1
14. Oklahoma State
15. Virginia Tech
16. Notre Dame
17. Michigan
18. South Florida
19. San Diego State
20. NC State
21. Michigan State
22. UCF
23. Stanford … +7
24. Texas Tech
25. Navy

Others Receiving Votes: Georgia Tech (3-1) 39; West Virginia (3-2) 26; Louisville (4-2) 25; Utah (4-1) 17; Florida (3-2) 9; LSU (4-2) 9; Kentucky (5-1) 6; Iowa State (3-2) 5; Texas A&M (4-2) 4; Memphis (4-1) 2

The USA Today Coaches poll: 

1. Alabama
2. Clemson
3. Penn State
4. Washington … +1
5. Georgia
6. Wisconsin
7. TCU
8. Ohio State
9. Washington State … +2
10. Miami (Fla.)
11. Auburn
12. Oklahoma
13. Southern California … +2
14. Oklahoma State
15. South Florida
16. Michigan
17. Virginia Tech
18. San Diego State
19. Notre Dame
20. NC State
21. UCF
22. Michigan State
23. Utah … -5
24. Navy
25. Stanford … +6 

Others Receiving Votes: Louisville (4-2) 85; Georgia Tech (3-1) 47; Kentucky (5-1) 41; West Virginia (3-2) 29; Texas Tech (4-1) 29; Florida (3-2) 23; Texas A&M (4-2) 14; Troy (4-1) 10; LSU (4-2) 9; Memphis (4-1) 9; Virginia (4-1) 5; Wake Forest (4-2) 5; Iowa State (3-2) 4; Iowa (4-2) 3; South Carolina (4-2) 3; Mississippi State (3-2) 3; Texas (3-2) 2; Colorado State (4-2) 2

Oregon State’s biggest issue: Quarterback

From the Oregonian … Oregon State stunk on Saturday. It played dumb. Special teams was a tangled mess. And OSU was as imaginative as a glass of water on offense.

All true.

And all of them sins.

But none of those was the Beavers’ biggest one. Because college football is a quarterback-driven game and Oregon State made the trip without a competent one. The resulting 38-10 loss to USC will be explained in a variety of ways, all of them sad, aggravating and frustrating. But without a competent signal-caller I don’t know how anyone expects OSU (1-5) to win a game. Even against a Trojans team that looked ripe for an upset.

What I’m saying is, Jake Luton, please get well.

Also, Gary Andersen, drop what you’re doing and find the next quarterback.

Continue reading story here


October 7th

… Foe Pause … 

USC takes out CU’s next opponent, Oregon State, 38-10

Related … “Oregon State Beavers squander chances, fall to Sam Darnold and USC” … from the Oregonian

From ESPN … Cornerback Iman Marshall and linebacker Uchenna Nwosu were two of the last Southern California players to reach the locker room after helping push the hydration cart back into the locker room, an apt conclusion to a perfectly workmanlike win.

Sam Darnold threw for 316 yards and three touchdowns, Ronald Jones II ran for a score and the No. 14 Trojans beat Oregon State 38-10 on Saturday.

“We beat them handily, but not like we wanted to,” USC safety Chris Hawkins said. “The score says we played well, the stats say we played well. We can get a lot better. I’m not satisfied, but I think it was a good win for us.”

USC (5-1, 3-1 Pac-12) bounced back from last week’s 30-27 loss at No. 11 Washington State, but its performance remained enigmatic. The offense had 512 yards, but Darnold turned the ball over twice. The defense held the Beavers scoreless in three sudden-change opportunities, but still had the occasional lapse in concentration. Freshman walk-on Chase McGrath made his eighth straight field goal this season, but Ajene Harris muffed a punt.

Continue reading story here

No. 11 Washington State remains undefeated with 33-10 win over Oregon 

Related … ” ‘We’ve just got to play better’: Undermanned Oregon Ducks falter against Washington State, 33-10” … from the Oregonian

From ESPN … Luke Falk threw for 282 yards and three touchdowns and No. 11 Washington State held Oregon scoreless after the first quarter for a 33-10 victory Saturday night.

The Cougars (6-0, 3-0 Pac-12) were on their first trip after quirky scheduling gave them their first five games at home. The team is off to its best start since winning seven to start the 2001 season.

Erik Powell contributed to the victory with field goals from 25, 52, 47 and 29 yards.

True freshman Braxton Burmeister made his first college start and threw for 145 yards and a touchdown for Oregon (4-2, 1-2). He also threw two interceptions.

Justin Herbert started at quarterback for the Ducks to start the season, but he broke his collarbone in Oregon’s 45-24 victory over California last weekend.

Running back Royce Freeman, who also left the game against Cal because of injury, started against the Cougars and ran 16 yards on his first carry. He finished with 62 yards rushing.

Continue reading story here


8 Responses to “Pac-12 Notes”

  1. ep

    you here nothing from or about Sean Miller with this basketball scandal. If AZBuff reads this let us know what the local scoop us. I would love to see the little arrogant Miller join Pitino in the parking lot of a Florida Walmart holding a “will coach for food” sign.

  2. Kevin

    Leavitt would be a brilliant hire by OSU. I’d love to see him out of Oregon too.

  3. Chirality

    I would be so pissed if OSU hired Leavitt. Realistically, my ideal situation last year was “Baylor hires MacIntyre, CU promotes Leavitt.”


  4. VK Berlin

    Time to go get Chris Naeole.

    Right now.


  5. buffnaustin

    Gary Anderson is my newest hero. Expectations actually meant something to him and he didn’t wait until OSU had to pay nor did he hold them hostage for what he saw as his failures.

  6. Chris

    Honestly, I think this OSU game just got a lot more difficult. Yeah, there may be some dysfunction because the HC is out, but I always feel like the affected team pulls together and fights…

    Buffalo up!

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