Florida Gators linebacker Brandon Spikes earns national defensive player of the year award

Florida junior linebacker Brandon Spikes was named the Chevrolet Defensive Player of the Year on Friday. For winning, the automaker will donate $5,000 to the school's general scholarship fund.

Spikes, a finalist for the Nagurski Award as the nation's top defensive player, had 93 tackles (52 solo) and four interceptions, two of which he returned for touchdowns.

East Carolina: The NCAA granted quarterback Patrick Pinkney a sixth season of eligibility. Pinkney, who threw for 2,675 yards and 13 touchdowns in 2008, missed two seasons to a shoulder injury.

New Mexico: Tee Martin, who led Tennessee to an unbeaten season and a BCS title in 1998, was hired as quarterbacks coach. Martin, 30, part of the staff of new coach Mike Locksley, spent the past two years as an assistant at high schools in Georgia. Also hired as defensive line coach was Rubin Carter, a former Miami standout and Florida A&M's coach from 2005-07.

Texas: Jordan Shipley, who caught 89 passes for 1,060 yards and 11 touchdowns in 2008, will miss spring practice after right shoulder surgery. He is expected to be ready by the fall.

Miami-Oklahoma: The teams moved their 2009 game from Sept. 12 to Oct. 3 at Dolphin Stadium.

Baseball: Texas coach Augie Garrido, whose 1,629 wins are a Division I record, was suspended for four games by the school after Saturday's arrest on drunken driving charges.

fast facts

Senior Bowl

When: 7 tonight

Where: Ladd Peebles Stadium, Mobile, Ala.

TV: NFL Network (not on Bright House)

State players: North —

Tyrone McKenzie, linebacker, USF. South — Greg Carr, receiver, Florida State; Antone Smith, running back, Florida State; Jason Watkins, offensive lineman, Florida.

Florida Gators linebacker Brandon Spikes earns national defensive player of the year award 01/23/09 [Last modified: Friday, January 23, 2009 10:48pm]

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