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Vols make QB change for Bama

By Compiled from Times wires

© St. Petersburg Times, published October 17, 2000

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. -- Freshman Casey Clausen will be the Volunteers' starting quarterback against Alabama, coach Phillip Fulmer announced after practice Monday.

It is the third quarterback change for the struggling Volunteers (2-3, 0-3 SEC).

"We feel like Casey gives us our best chance throwing the football and doing the things we need a quarterback to do," Fulmer said.

Redshirt freshman A.J. Suggs started the past four games after sophomore Joey Mathews started the season opener.

In the past three games, Suggs shared time with Clausen, who is scheduled to play the entire game Saturday against the Crimson Tide (3-3, 3-1).

Fulmer said earlier this season that he was waiting for one quarterback to emerge as the starter.

"We need someone to take charge. Nobody has really just taken command," Fulmer said.

Clausen didn't say whether he was surprised at the change, only that he was happy to get the opportunity. "The main thing is we've got to start winning football games again," he said.

PITT: With the tough part of their schedule coming up and the season nearly half over, coach Walt Harris has decided on a starting quarterback. John Turman will start Saturday against Boston College -- and beyond, Harris said, which means he also should start against No. 2 Virginia Tech and No. 4 Miami during the next four weeks.

SOUTH CAROLINA: The Gamecocks have won six games and earned a bowl bid for the first time in four years? So how come they don't feel like heading to Disney World? "How can we have a big head?" said guard Larrell Johnson, who played at Tampa's Robinson High. "We may have won six games, but we just came off an 0-11 season." Success is not only fleeting at USC, it's barely shown up in 107 seasons of football. The Gamecocks have one bowl victory, only one 10-win season and have never been better than .500 in the SEC. "When you have success, you want more of it," coach Lou Holtz said. "We are not content with what we have so far."

VIRGINIA: Already a huge underdog, Virginia might be without starting quarterback Dan Ellis at No. 6 Florida State on Saturday, possibly leaving the job to a redshirt freshman. Ellis strained his right hamstring in the Cavaliers' 31-23 victory over Maryland two weeks ago and didn't practice all last week. If he can't return to practice by Wednesday, either Bryson Spinner or Matt Schaub would start against the Seminoles.

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