WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Purdue quarterback Robert Marve will miss the rest of the season after being diagnosed with a torn left ACL, the school said Thursday.
Boilermakers coach Danny Hope said he was in shock when Marve, a graduate of Plant High, went down during the first quarter of Saturday's 31-20 loss to Toledo.
"I don't even really know what happened," he said after the game. "I was just standing there watching and couldn't believe it."
Hope wasn't optimistic, and the team's orthopedist eventually confirmed his suspicion.
"Robert Marve is a big part of our football family," Hope said in a statement the school released Thursday. "He has worked extremely hard to be the great player that he is, and our heart goes out to him. Boilermaker Nation will rally behind him with all of its support through this tough time. I know he will continue to be an inspiration to his teammates and fans."
Marve, a junior who was not available for comment, tore the ACL in the same knee last year then bruised it Sept. 18 against Ball State. It was his first season with Purdue after transferring from Miami following the 2008 season.
Redshirt freshman Rob Henry has stepped in the past two games after Marve has been injured.
Ex-UNC assistant says loans didn't net favors
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. — Lawyers for former North Carolina assistant John Blake said their client received loans from longtime friend Gary Wichard, also a sports agent, but there was no arrangement to direct players to Wichard once they left for the NFL.
William Beaver said Wichard was trying to help Blake as he encountered financial trouble after being fired as Oklahoma's coach in 1998. Beaver wouldn't specify how much money was provided to Blake, who resigned as associate coach last month.
The NCAA is looking into agent-related benefits and possible academic violations in the program. Part of the investigation is a pair of trips defensive tackle Marvin Austin took to California in 2009 as well as three trips to Miami this year. Beaver said Blake didn't know Austin went to California to train with former Tar Heel teammate — and Wichard client — Kentwan Balmer at a facility near Wichard's office.
Meanwhile, safety Da'Norris Searcy was cleared to play Saturday against East Carolina. The senior, who started every game last season, missed the first three because of the investigation.
Saban denies forcing players to leave team
TUSCALOOSA — Alabama coach Nick Saban, responding to a Wall Street Journal story, said he is not involved in awarding medical scholarships and did not pressure players to leave the program.
Alabama has issued 12 medical scholarships since Saban took over in 2007, nearly half of the estimated 25 medical scholarships distributed by the 12-school SEC the past three years, the Journal reported.
A medical scholarship is intended so players too injured to play don't lose their financial aid, but a player who receives one is dismissed from the team. Critics claim it can be misused as a way to pressure players to quit for medical reasons even when they are healthy enough to play.
"I'm still kind of bitter," said former linebacker Chuck Kirschman, who took a medical scholarship last year because of a back injury.
"I don't have any question (that) every player we have given a medical to, it's been because of the … opinion of the medical staff," Saban said. "Those guys should not continue to play football because it would put their future in tremendous risk. … Whether the player agrees with that or not, I can't control. I don't make the decision."
Charles Hoke, a former offensive lineman who took the scholarship in 2008 because of a shoulder problem, said the choice was left up to him.
Appalachian St.: The school, which won I-AA national titles from 2005-07, will conduct a feasibility study on moving to I-A.
Michigan St.: Sophomore tight end Dion Sims pleaded guilty to receiving and concealing stolen property in the theft of laptop computers from several Detroit public schools. Sims, one of 10 men charged, was suspended indefinitely last week. He is set to be sentenced Dec. 6.
Va. Tech: Ryan Williams, who as a freshman last season set a school record with 1,655 rushing yards, will miss Saturday's game against No. 23 N.C. State with a sore hamstring.
Washington: Home games in 2012 will be at Qwest Field, home of the NFL's Seahawks, while Husky Stadium undergoes renovations.
Okla. St. 38: Texas A&M 35: Dan Bailey's 40-yard field goal with no time left lifted the host Cowboys in the teams' Big 12 opener. The Aggies (3-1) scored touchdowns 2:25 apart to tie it with 2:54 left. But A&M's Jerrod Johnson, who was 40-of-62 for 409 yards and five touchdowns, threw his fourth interception of the game. Shaun Lewis returned it to the A&M 40 with 16 seconds left. And three plays later, Oklahoma State (4-0) won it.
Basketball: Duke gets former Florida recruit
Austin Rivers, son of Celtics coach Doc Rivers and one of the nation's most highly recruited players, orally committed to Duke.
The 6-foot-4 guard, who is set to graduate from Winter Park High in the spring, was part of the U.S. team that won gold at the under-18 world championship in June.
He orally committed to Florida in 2008 but reopened his search when it failed to make the NCAA Tournament twice after winning consecutive national titles. His final decision came down to Duke, Kansas and North Carolina.
Duke cannot comment until it receives a letter of intent. The earliest Rivers can sign is Nov. 10.
Wake Forest: Center Tony Woods was given a suspended 60-day sentence after pleading guilty to a misdemeanor charge of assault. Police say Woods, suspended indefinitely from the team on Sept. 13, kicked and pushed down the mother of his 1-year-old son, causing her to fracture her spine.