• When the Miami Hurricanes kick off the 2013 season, they will do so in style thanks to alumnus Dwayne Johnson. You might know Johnson better as The Rock, the wildly popular professional wrestler and action movie star.
Miami named its locker room for Johnson, a starter on the Hurricanes’ defense in the early 1990s and donor to the program.
The new Miami football locker room dedicated to The Rock. http://t.co/QvgadswGxV
— Michael Casagrande (@ByCasagrande) August 9, 2013
• The NCAA restored the eligibility of Wake Forest running back Josh Harris on Friday, the university announced. Harris was declared ineligible last week for unspecified reasons, striking a major blow to the Demon Deacons’ postseason aspirations.
Harris rushed for 608 yards and five touchdowns last season. He’ll be a vital component of the Demon Deacons’ retooled offense, which will use quarterback Tanner Price in more zone read type plays.
• Mike Riley might remain mum on who will start at quarterback for his Oregon State Beavers come Week 1, but there is no doubt who OSU’s top receiver will be. Junior Brandin Cooks is no longer “sidekick” to former Beaver standout and current Steelers rookie Markus Wheaton, the Associated Press’ Anne M. Peterson reports.
• Georgia Bulldogs head coach Mark Richt got an improved effort from his squad in Thursday’s practice, per Dawn of the Dawg.
The two-time defending SEC East champion Bulldogs struggled through a sluggish scrimmage on Wednesday.
• The new Kentucky Wildcats coaching regime is implementing several changes, including a higher tempo offensive style under coordinator Neal Brown. Its success will hinge largely on the development of the offensive line, which Wildcat Blue Nation breaks down.
• Michigan State donned pads for the first time in the preseason late this week. Following what Spartan Avenue called the final “pre-preseason” workout, head coach Mark Dantonio praised his cache of running backs and remained tight-lipped on the Spartans’ quarterback competition.
• Charlotte is the latest athletic department to get on board with football. The university’s program recently began practice for its inaugural season. Whether the 49ers find success on the gridiron or not, Pick Axe Digest says football is an economic win for the school.