BATON ROUGE, La. - Quarterback Matt Mauck, who led LSU to the BCS national title, will forego his final year of college eligibility and enter the NFL draft.
Mauck was 18-2 as a starter and set an LSU record with 28 touchdown passes last season.
"I want to give it my best shot and hopefully it will work out," he said.
Mauck, who turns 25 next month, graduated in December and is getting married in February.
"We wanted this guy to come back, but we're happy he has the opportunity," coach Nick Saban said. "He's been the leader, he's been the commander in chief out there."
The news wasn't all bad for the Tigers. Junior defensive end Marcus Spears said at the same news conference he would stay for his senior year.
"I made a four-year commitment and I'm going to stick to that," he said. "I'm going to be back in LSU."
Saban is still awaiting word from junior center Ben Wilkerson and junior defensive end Marquise Hill, who must decide by Thursday.
EASTERN MICHIGAN: Quarterback Chinedu Okoro and defensive back Yves Dieudonne were dismissed from the team after being charged in a campus party incident. Okoro was charged with injuring a police officer attempting to break up the party. Dieudonne was charged with resisting and opposing an officer causing injury.
FLORIDA STATE: Fabian Walker, the Seminoles' backup quarterback the last two seasons and the starter in the 2003 Sugar Bowl, enrolled at Valdosta State and begins classes today, coach Chris Hatcher said. "I know he's a great player, but he felt he was stuck behind Chris Rix," he said. "He has a new life here."
GEORGIA: Defensive coordinator Brian VanGorder won the Broyles Award, given to the nation's top assistant. VanGorder, 44, lost four Bulldogs to the NFL last year and four starters to injuries. But his defense ranked third nationally in scoring, sixth against the pass and fourth overall. He beat out Minnesota's Mitch Browning, Michigan's Terry Malone, Miami of Ohio's Shane Montgomery and Southern Miss' Tyrone Nix.
NEBRASKA: Coach Bill Callahan took firm control by firing seven assistants, including Bo Pelini, who led the Cornhuskers to an Alamo Bowl victory. Callahan will keep quarterbacks coach Turner Gill and recruiting coordinator Scott Downing at least through national signing day Feb. 4. "It was a tough couple weeks on my family," Pelini said. "You want to bring closure to it. I enjoyed my year, and now it's time to move on." Pelini will interview Thursday at Oklahoma for an assistant position. Callahan also fired offensive coordinator Barney Cotton, and assistants Marvin Sanders, Jimmy Williams, Tim Albin, Ron Brown and Jeff Jamrog.
SOUTH CAROLINA: David Reaves, a former assistant at Tampa Catholic, was given a full-time job to coach the secondary. Reaves, a graduate assistant the past two seasons, is the son of John Reaves, a former Florida Gator and Tampa native who formerly coached the Gamecocks quarterbacks. Coach Lou Holtz also hired two of his former players, Phil Petty and C.J. Frye, as graduate assistants.
TEXAS: Running back Cedric Benson and quarterback Chance Mock will return for their senior seasons. Benson had 1,360 yards last year and is third on the Longhorns' rushing list behind Ricky Williams and Earl Campbell. Mock threw for 1,469 yards.
- Times staff writer Brian Landman contributed to this report.