Fri, 19 Apr 2019

CFB notebook: UCFs Milton does not play at East Carolina

Sports Xchange
21 Oct 2018, 13:16 GMT+10

Central Florida coach Josh Heupel did not play quarterback McKenzie Milton in Saturday night's 37-10 win for the10th-ranked Knights at East Carolina because of a game-time decision regarding injuries.

"I just didn't feel he was ready to go," Heupel told reporters.

Milton suffered an ankle injury in last week's win at Memphis, but he was in pads with his helmet at game time against East Carolina. According to multiple reports, Milton is also suffering from shoulder soreness and an injury with his right throwing hand.

Redshirt freshman Darriel Mack Jr. started at quarterback for UCF, which has won 21 straight games. Milton's string of 27 consecutive starts was snapped.

Central Florida improved to 7-0 with the victory. The Knights do not play again until Nov. 1 at home against Temple. Heupel wanted to give Milton extended rest heading into the last month of the regular season.

Milton, a junior from Kapolei, Hawaii, has completed 119 of 200 passes for 1,797 yards with 16 touchdowns and only four interceptions. He has thrown only one interception in the last four games after having three in a 38-0 win over South Carolina State on Sept. 8.

At 5-foot-11, 185 pounds, Milton has rushed for 204 yards on 48 carries with six touchdowns.

--Washington State coach Mike Leach accused the Pac-12 Conference of favoritism in a series of text messages, Yahoo Sports reported Friday.

The website obtained a series of texts that Leach sent to conference officials, in which he lambasted one conference official while questioning the league's commitment to player safety and asking if there was an attempt to "manipulate wins and losses."

The barrage of messages from Leach to the conference stemmed from a controversial non-call during Washington State's 39-36 loss at USC on Sept. 21.

Leach was angered that USC linebacker Porter Gustin was not cited for targeting after a helmet-to-helmet hit on Washington State quarterback Gardner Minshew.

After the game, Leach would not comment on the hit by Gustin and instead directed reporters to call Woodie Dixon, the Pac-12 general counsel and senior vice president of business affairs.

Yahoo Sports reported last week that, in the same game, Dixon telephoned the press box and overruled officials on a non-targeting call by Cougars linebacker Logan Tago on USC quarterback JT Daniels. After that report, Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott announced that the conference will overhaul its replay protocols.

Days after the game, Leach blasted Dixon in a text to Pac-12 vice president of officiating David Coleman, writing: "Woodie is a total coward and is afraid of USC. I look forward to telling him in person."

Leach also sent a direct text to Dixon in response to the non-call on Gustin's hit.

"Don't ever waste my time, making me sit through some sanctimonious speech or demonstration on player safety or targeting if you are going to continue to alibi what happened last Friday," Leach texted.

--Indiana running back Morgan Ellison was permanently dismissed from the school's football team.

Ellison, the team's leading rusher in 2017, also was suspended from the university for 2 1/2 years, the Indiana athletic department announced Friday night.

"Effective today, Oct. 19, 2018, sophomore Morgan Ellison has been suspended for 2 1/2 years from Indiana University," the statement read, "dismissing him from all university-related activities and resulting in his permanent dismissal from the football team."

The move came two months after Ellison was suspended indefinitely from all team activities. He returned to practice in September for nearly three weeks until the panel's findings were released.

After a university sexual misconduct hearing earlier this month, Ellison was found responsible for sexually assaulting a fellow student while she was sleeping, the Indianapolis Star reported. The assault continued after the victim awoke, according to the report.

Ellison, who during the hearing denied using force, was allowed to appeal the initial findings. He lost the appeal, leading to Friday's suspension, according to records.

"I am glad justice has been served," the woman told the newspaper. "And it will never undo what was done, but I am at least content that the school made the right decision."

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