CHAPEL HILL, N.C. — John Blake has resigned as No. 18 North Carolina's associate coach, the school said Sunday.
Blake, who coached Oklahoma from 1996-98 and was in his fourth season on Butch Davis' staff, said in a statement issued by the school that he stepped down because "my presence has become a distraction."
The NCAA has spent much of the summer investigating if defensive lineman Marvin Austin and receiver Greg Little received improper benefits from agents.
The probe has since expanded to include possible academic misconduct, and 13 players did not travel to Atlanta for Saturday's game against LSU. Also drawing the NCAA's interest is Blake's longtime friendship with California-based agent Gary Wichard.
"Coach Blake had indicated to me in previous conversations that he would step down if he felt his presence with the football program would become a distraction," athletic director Dick Baddour said. "I know the young men he coached are tremendously disappointed, but Coach Davis and his staff will help and support them as the season moves forward."
Blake will be paid $74,500, an approximation of the $240,000 annual salary he would have received had he finished the season. The money will come from football revenues, the school said.
Vols lose star receiver
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Tennessee receiver Gerald Jones will miss 2-3 games with a broken left hand. That could keep the Vols' leading receiver for each of the past two seasons out of games against No. 11 Oregon, No. 4 Florida and UAB. The senior was hurt during the third quarter of Saturday's 50-0 win over Tennessee-Martin while catching a 37-yard pass.
Irish ratings up: The preliminary rating for Saturday's Notre Dame-Purdue game, Brian Kelly's first as Irish coach, was up 77 percent from last year's opener. NBC said the game drew a 2.3 overnight rating and 6 share compared with a 1.3 and 3 for the matchup against Nevada. Ratings represent the percentage of all homes with TVs tuned into a program. Shares represent the percentage of all homes with TVs in use at the time. Overnight ratings measure the country's largest markets.
61-yard field goal: SMU's Matt Szymanski made a 61-yard field goal during the fourth quarter of a 35-27 loss at Texas Tech. The longest field goal without a tee in a Division I-A game is 65 yards by Kansas State's Martin Gramatica on Sept. 12, 1998. Taylor Potts threw for 359 yards and four touchdowns as Tommy Tuberville won in his debut as Red Raiders coach.
Kentucky: Safety Winston Guy and defensive end DeQuin Evans didn't start Saturday against Louisville as punishment for being late to a team meeting, coach Joker Phillips said. He had declined to say why the two, atop the depth chart, entered the game late and Evans, a captain, didn't take part in the coin toss.
UCF: Running back Jeff Brinson, a star at St. Petersburg's Northeast High, is out for the season with a torn ACL. The school said only the injury occurred during a noncontact drill last week. Brinson transferred from Iowa during the summer, and the NCAA allowed him to play right away because his father is suffering from a heart condition.
No. 6 TCU 30, No. 24 Oregon St. 21: Andy Dalton ran for two scores and threw for one for the Horned Frogs at Cowboys Stadium. His 30th win passed Sammy Baugh for the school record.
No. 7 Okla. 31, Utah St. 24: DeMarco Murray ran for 218 yards and two scores, including a 63-yarder that made it 28-17 in the third. Oklahoma became the seventh I-A program with 800 wins, joining: Michigan, Texas, Notre Dame, Nebraska, Ohio State and Penn State.
No. 8 Nebraska 49, Western Ky. 10: Taylor Martinez, the first freshman to start an opener for the host Huskers, ran for 127 yards and three touchdowns and passed for 136 yards.
No. 12 Wisconsin 41, UNLV 21: John Clay ran for 123 yards and two touchdowns and Montee Hall 76 yards and two touchdowns for the visiting Badgers. Up 17-14, they outscored the Rebels 24-0 in the third.
No. 21 LSU 30, No. 18 UNC 24: The Tar Heels nearly rallied from a 30-10 halftime deficit in Atlanta. After recovering a fumble, T.J. Yates drove them to the LSU 6, but two passes into the end zone in the final seconds slipped through Zack Pianalto's hands.
No. 22 Auburn 52, Ark. St. 26: Making his first start, ex-Gator quarterback Cam Newton ran for 171 yards and two touchdowns and passed for 186 yards and three touchdowns for the host Tigers.
Fresno St. 28, Cincinnati 14: Ryan Colburn threw four touchdowns for the host Bulldogs. The Bearcats had won 18 straight regular-season games dating to Oct. 30, 2008, their only losses being the January 2009 Orange Bowl to Virginia Tech and January 2010 Sugar Bowl to Florida.
Information from the Orlando Sentinel was used in this report.