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Bengals adding free-agent linebacker

Published: Saturday, March 18, 2017 @ 8:55 PM

            ST. LOUIS, MO - DECEMBER 6: Tavon Austin #11 of the St. Louis Rams is tackled by Kevin Minter #51 of the Arizona Cardinals in the first quarter at the Edward Jones Dome on December 6, 2015 in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)
ST. LOUIS, MO - DECEMBER 6: Tavon Austin #11 of the St. Louis Rams is tackled by Kevin Minter #51 of the Arizona Cardinals in the first quarter at the Edward Jones Dome on December 6, 2015 in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)

The Cincinnati Bengals have reached agreement with former Arizona Cardinals linebacker Kevin Minter after hosting the free agent last week, numerous outlets reported.

Minter, 26, was an inside linebacker in Arizona’s 3-4 defense. He was rated as the fifth-best free agent linebacker on the market by Pro Football Focus (PFF).

A 2013 second-round draft out of LSU, Minter has started all 32 games the last two years.

According to PFF, Minter was inconsistent last season, with 20 missed tackles, but was rated above average in pass coverage.

In anticipation of Minter’s departure, the Cardinals brought back former Bengals and Browns linebacker Karlos Dansby with a one-year deal earlier in free agency.

Kentucky coach John Calipari discusses plan for Jarred Vanderbilt vs. Florida

Published: Saturday, January 20, 2018 @ 4:49 AM

Kentucky coach John Calipari finally got a brief glimpse of true freshman Jarred Vanderbilt, but it was a promising one. Now, he’ll get a longer look at his uber talented point-forward.

According to The Courier-Journal, Vanderbilt will play 16 to 18 minutes in Kentucky’s huge SEC showdown against rival Florida on Saturday night.

That may not seem like much, but the 5-star prospect and No. 12 overall recruit in this year’s class exhibited the impact he can make in limited time against South Carolina on Tuesday.

Making his debut, Vanderbilt went for 6 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists and a block in just 14 minutes of the Wildcats’ 76-68 loss to the Gamecocks. The plan for that contest was for Vanderbilt to only play 12 minutes.

No. 18 Kentucky (14-4, 4-2 in SEC) will need all the help it can get as it hosts Florida (13-5, 5-1), which boasts the best record in SEC play up to this point.

Notre Dame football: 3 players who might consider transfer

Published: Saturday, January 20, 2018 @ 4:37 AM

The Notre Dame football program is coming off a 10-win season and has the No. 8 incoming recruiting class in the country according to the 247Sports composite rankings and one of the side effects to that reality is that players buried on the depth chart will inevitably seek to transfer.

It’s completely healthy and necessary in a lot of regards for both the program and the player, as it opens up roster space for younger players who have greater long-term potential and gives players a chance to find a place to play. Everybody can eventually be better off in these situations (though Notre Dame generally runs a slightly lower risk of this than many because of the quality of their education).

So, with that in mind, let’s take a look at the Notre Dame roster and depth chart and take a look at three players who could consider leaving South Bend with a transfer.

Notre Dame NG Brandon Tiassum

Brandon Tiassum simply hasn’t been able to find his way onto the field in three years on campus. He’s played in just 3 games in his career and recorded 2 tackles and with Jerry Tillery and Kurt Hinish returning plus Jayson Ademilola and Ja’Mion Franklin coming in, there’s not a great chance of that changing.

With Tiassum and really everyone else we discuss here, it simply comes down to what he values more: a chance to play or the best possible education. And there’s really no wrong answer and a transfer could even allow him to strike some happy balance between finding playing time and still getting a great education.

Notre Dame S D.J. Morgan

D.J. Morgan is in the same boat as Tiassum and that will be the general theme here, as no higher-profile players look like flight risks at the moment unless Ian Book winds up being passed on the depth chart by Avery Davis and Phil Jurkovec (when he gets on campus) or Brandon Wimbush winds up buried on the depth chart somehow.

Morgan simply has played sparingly in two games during two years at Notre Dame and the entire safety rotation will be back in 2018 with Derrik Allen on the way. If he wants playing time, he’ll likely have to find it elsewhere.

Notre Dame TE Nic Weishar

Nic Weishar will graduate with a degree in finance this spring and has one remaining year of eligibility. So, he can stay and will continue to be an ancillary piece in the tight end rotation and possibly earn a starting role in what will be a crowded room or he can become a graduate transfer.

Chances are he won’t make a decision either way until after he sees the spring shake out and gets his diploma. If he has a chance to start and replace Durham Smythe, he’ll probably stay. If he looks like he’s going to be passed up by Brock Wright, Kmet Cole, incoming freshman George Takacs and Tommy Tremble, or Alize Mack should he be allowed to return, then maybe he leaves.

WATCH: Oklahoma signee Brian Asamoah delivers huge hit during International Bowl

Published: Saturday, January 20, 2018 @ 4:29 AM

Defensive reinforcements are coming to Oklahoma.

Take 2018 Sooners signee Brian Asamoah for example. The 3-star linebacker played in the International Bowl between the United States’ U19 team and Canada’s U19 team on Friday, and he brought the wood late in the second period.

Asamoah, a product of Columbus, Ohio, was a huge verbal pledge for the Sooners. Oklahoma stole the 6-foot-1 linebacker straight out of Ohio State’s backyard, and it even got Asamoah’s commitment right before the Sooners’ win over the Buckeyes.

Hits like the one Asamoah delivered in the International Bowl should be a good sign of things to come. Oklahoma’s defense struggled plenty in 2017, but the Sooners staff is closing well in its recruiting efforts for the current class.

Asamoah signed with Oklahoma during the early period. He ranks as the No. 33 outside linebacker in the country and No. 22 overall prospect from Ohio, according to 247Sports.

Kansas freshman PF Billy Preston signs with Bosnian professional team

Published: Saturday, January 20, 2018 @ 4:16 AM

Billy Preston’s career as a Kansas Jayhawks has reached its end before it ever really got started.

On Saturday, the freshman and former McDonald’s All-American signed with Bosnian professional team BC Igokea, according to multiple reports.

“We are thrilled to welcome Billy Preston to our Club,” BC Ikogea said in a statement. “We watched him when he was in High School at OakHill Academy and in the McDonalds All Star game. We are honored to have such a tremendous talent in our organization. We were watching his situation closely and reached out to his family to show interest and ultimately reached an Agreement with the family Attorney in California on a contract for the rest of the season. We know Billy is an NBA prospect so we will do our best to continue his development to help him excel for our club and fulfill his goal which is to be an NBA star in the near future.”
This story will be updated.