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Report: Texas said no to Northwestern RB transfer Venric Mark
Why did the Horns opt to pass on the highly productive back with a need at the position?
The Texas Longhorns could have potentially added former Northwestern Wildcats running back Venric Mark, but the Horns declined to accept the transfer, according to a report from CBS Sports.
A Texas native from Houston St. Pius X who enrolled at Northwestern as a member of the 2010 class, Mark opted to leave Northwestern last week for what were described as "personal reasons." In June, he was suspended for the first two games of the season for violating team rules.
Now headed for a program closer to his mother, who now lives in Lubbock, Mark reportedly had his interest in Texas shot down by head coach Charlie Strong because Strong "is cleaning house and isn't taking on new players at the moment."
Granted an extra year of eligibility after missing most of the 2013 season with a leg injury, Mark will be appealing to the NCAA for a waiver to play immediately because of those personal reasons or perhaps even because Northwestern ran him off, the loophole that Oklahoma is attempting to exploit with former Missouri wide receiver Dorial Green-Beckham.
Without knowing more about the circumstances, it's difficult to say whether the NCAA will grant his request for either reason.
And since the Horns are in need of more running back depth following the dismissals of senior Joe Bergeron and sophomore Jalen Overstreet, adding Mark would have made tremendous sense in that regard considering that the former Northwestern back ran for 1,366 yards with 12 touchdowns on the ground and two punt returns for touchdowns in 2012.
But the "no new players" wording makes more sense when considering the two-game suspension of Mark this season -- why would Strong risk giving up the ground that he's gained with his team by accepting a player who faced a suspension with his previous staff?
Having reportedly declined Mark, it appears the Horns will soldier into the 2014 season with only four scholarship running backs following the news that freshman D'Onta Foreman was cleared by the NCAA last week.
Even with the addition of Foreman, depth at the position is still razor thin with junior Johnathan Gray still untested following his return from the Achilles injury that ended his 2013 season.
Daily Round Up: 11 Days
Disclaimer: Before you proceed, just remember that none of the links are vetted and you may be reading something written by a 13-year-old, a so-called sports journalist or Clay Travis (is there really any difference between those options?). Read at your own peril.
Charlie Strong puts Texas on the right path. [San Antonio Express-News]
Strong breaks down the Texas roster. [247 Texas]
This will explain that photo of a hideous belt a player was wearing. [ESPN]
Texas Monthly has a new cover. [Texas Monthly]
Vince Young has a new job. [KXAN]
Moody's was not impressed with the BOR's infighting. [Texas Tribune]
The zone read will be fashionable this season. [NewsOK]
Mike Gundy had high praise for his QBs. [NewsOK]
It's time for TCU to get some recognition in the Big 12. [Ft. Worth Star-Telegram]
Iowa State has named a starting QB. [ESPN]
Money is killing college football. [Capital Gazette]
Mark these Saturdays on your calendar. [Zanesville Times-Register]
The Tim Tebow CFL Chronicles is a must-read. [SB Nation]
Thayer Evans is still writing for SI after that OSU article debacle? [SI]
Aggies continue to do stupid tings in the SEC. [Lost Lettermen]
Yes, this really is a college football schedule. It is not a mirage.
|Saturday, August 23rd
|SHSU at Eastern Washington
ESPN / watchespn
|Wednesday, August 27th
|Abilene Christian at Georgia State
||ESPNU / watchespn
Thanks to LSU Football for the schedule.