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Miami expects three stars to leave early

Wire services
Published December 7, 2003

MIAMI - The Hurricanes are expecting the early departure of three juniors who likely will become first-round NFL picks.

The South Florida Sun-Sentinel reported that tight end Kellen Winslow, defensive tackle Vince Wilfork and safety Sean Taylor have informed Miami coaches they will leave school early.

UM is having the game film for all three, and junior cornerback Antrel Rolle, evaluated by the NFL's advisory committee so they will get a more accurate assessment of their draft status.

Rolle, who boosted his stock by shutting down Pittsburgh wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald for the second straight year, appears undecided because he's not a guarantee for the first round.

Winslow was coy, telling the crowd of boosters, players, coaches and alumni, "Hopefully, I'll be here next year," at the conclusion of his acceptance speech for the receiver of the year honors. His comment drew more laughter than applause.

Wilfork, who is likely to be the first of the UM players picked because he plays a position that's in high demand, said "coaches already know" of his intent. Taylor told reporters their assumption of him leaving "is right."

Six Hurricanes could be projected as first-round picks, which would be an NFL record.

Senior linebackers D.J. Williams and Jonathan Vilma are rated among the best at their positions, along with senior offensive lineman Vernon Carey.

FAU 48, NORTHERN ARIZONA 25: Jared Allen passed for 228 yards and three touchdowns in three quarters as visiting Florida Atlantic advanced to the Division I-AA semifinals. FAU (11-2) hosts Colgate, a 28-27 victor over Western Illinois, Saturday.

ARMY: Former Nebraska coach Frank Solich said he spoke with Army officials about their opening and was impressed with the commitment to the football program. But he withdrew from consideration.

"I gave it careful consideration," Solich said. "It was an honor to be interviewed because when you are talking about the academy, you are talking about the very finest people around. Whoever gets the position is going to have a great situation."

Army appears willing to pay for a prominent candidate; academy officials are prepared to double and perhaps triple the more than $200,000 salary they paid Berry, the New York Times reported.

DUKE: Ted Roof was hired as coach, his five-week audition turning into a full-time job.

Athletic director Joe Alleva said Roof, 39, signed a long-term contract. He was hired over three other candidates, including former Detroit Lions coach Bobby Ross. Roof has no previous head-coaching experience.

"He proved to me he could be a head coach in his audition," Alleva said.

Roof was 2-3 as interim coach after Carl Franks was fired Oct. 19, breaking the program's 30-game ACC losing streak with a victory over Georgia Tech and a 13-game skid against rival North Carolina. Two losses were close games against Tennessee and North Carolina State.

"I've known what I've wanted to do since I was 17 years old," Roof said. "I wanted to be a head football coach in the Atlantic Coast Conference. There has been no other goal."

Since going to their last bowl in 1994, the Blue Devils are 18-83, including three 0-11 seasons.

The players endorsed Roof for the full-time job one week after he took over for Franks.

OREGON: Coach Mike Bellotti agreed Friday to a one-year extension that will keep him with the Ducks through the 2008 season. His salary remains $650,000, with incentives that could push the total to $1.1-million, the school said.

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