College football notebook

Each finalist has a chance to make Heisman history

Heisman Trophy candidates Johnny Manziel, right, and Manti Te'o will be in New York on Saturday night for the award ceremony.
Mike Segar/Reuters
Heisman Trophy candidates Johnny Manziel, right, and Manti Te'o will be in New York on Saturday night for the award ceremony.

Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te’o was looking forward to a break after a five-city-in-five-days tour, during which he has become the most decorated player in college football.

‘‘I’m just trying to get a workout in and get some sleep,’’ he said Friday about his plans for the night.

Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel seemed to have more energy when he arrived at a midtown Manhattan hotel with his fellow Heisman Trophy finalist.


‘‘It’s just taking it up a whole ’nother level, but happy to be here,’’ he said.

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Manziel and Te’o spent about 30 minutes getting grilled by dozens of reporters in a cramped conference room, posed for some pictures with the big bronze statue that they are hoping to win, and were quickly whisked away for more interviews and photo opportunities.

Manziel, Te’o, or Kansas State quarterback Collin Klein, the other finalist who couldn’t make it to town Friday, each has a chance to be a Heisman first Saturday night.

Manziel is trying to be the first freshman to win the award. Te’o would be the first winner to play only defense. Klein would be K-State’s first winner.

Te’o is already going to need a huge trophy case to house his haul from this week. He has won six major awards, including the Maxwell as national player of the year. He’ll try to become Notre Dame’s eighth Heisman winner and first since Tim Brown in 1987.


‘‘I can only imagine how I would feel if I win the Heisman,’’ he said.

The announcement will be televised on ESPN Saturday night at 8.

Jones to Tennessee

Tennessee introduced new coach Butch Jones, formerly of Cincinnati, who said he was taking over ‘‘the best college football program in America.’’

Jones went 23-14 at Cincinnati the last three years. He faces the task of rebuilding a former Southeastern Conference power that posted three consecutive losing seasons under Derek Dooley, who was fired Nov. 18.

Jones agreed to a six-year contract worth $18.2 million. Colorado had offered him a five-year deal worth at least $13.5 million. Jones also had been linked to the Purdue coaching job before removing himself from consideration.


Cincinnati has made defensive line coach Steve Stripling its interim head coach for the Dec. 27 Belk Bowl against Duke in Charlotte, N.C., while searching for Jones’s successor.

One-sided battle

The Army-Navy series is not only the most patriotic rivalry in sports, it’s turned into one of the most one-sided. Navy has won 10 straight, doubling the previous winning streak of either team in a series that stretches to 1890. On Saturday in Philadelphia, Army gets another chance to bring home the coveted Commander-in-Chief’s Trophy. Army and Navy each defeated Air Force, putting the prestigious trophy up for grabs for the first time since 2005. Army (2-9) hasn’t hoisted the CIC trophy since 1996. Navy (7-4) won it a school-record seven straight seasons through 2009 before giving way Air Force the last two seasons. Navy’s 27-21 win over Army last season was the tightest margin since the winning streak started . . . Penn State and Pitt will play in 2018 and ’19, extending a previous deal that revived the dormant series . . . Vernon Dunnom of Division 2 West Liberty (W. Va.) was arrested on charges related to a slaying in Florida. Dunnom, 24, was arraigned in Ohio County Magistrate Court on charges of first-degree homicide, attempted homicide, two counts of robbery. Authorities said two people were shot, one fatally, during a robbery Nov. 17 in Miami Gardens, Fla.