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Ex-FAMU QB Hepburn dead at 65

Published Oct. 7, 2005

Alkin Hepburn, a star quarterback at Florida A&M in the early 1950s, has died at age 65.

Mr. Hepburn died Oct. 14 at his Miami home, and the cause of death has not been determined, his son, Alkin Hepburn III, said Thursday.

Mr. Hepburn was the most valuable player in the Orange Blossom Classic in 1951, completing 10 of 11 passes for five touchdowns. That same season he was the MVP of the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.

During his Florida A&M career, he led the Rattlers to a 29-6 record and was named to the school's Hall of Fame in 1987.

After graduation and Army service, he coached football and basketball teams at Miami high schools.

He is survived by his son and daughter, Doris Hepburn.

Gator Bowl near deal?

JACKSONVILLE _ The Gator Bowl, searching for its place in next season's bowl picture, is close to a deal involving the Atlantic Coast and Big East conferences, the Florida Times-Union reported.

The two scenarios: The game will match the runners-up from the ACC and the Big East, or the SEC's No. 3 team against either the ACC or Big East runner-up.

In the latter scenario, the Gator Bowl would rotate with the Cotton Bowl on selection of the Big East and ACC runner-up. The Cotton Bowl's home team likely will be the Big Eight runner-up, the newspaper said. The Gator and Cotton bowls were passed over in August by the Bowl Alliance _ and a shot at a national championship game.

Dye retires from Auburn

AUBURN, Ala. _ Already in the rumor mill as a possible head coach at Georgia, Pat Dye has retired from his Auburn post.

Dye, 54, has been a special assistant to President William V. Muse since he was forced out as coach in November 1992 amid an NCAA probe. He filed for retirement effective Sept. 1, but said he is "still doing exactly what I was doing" for Auburn.

"I can't say I wouldn't be interested in coaching again," Dye said. "But me being interested in coaching again is a long way from me coaching again."

McNair shoots for record

LORMAN, Miss. _ When Steve "Air" McNair becomes the NCAA career total offense leader, he will not have fully lived up to his nickname.

McNair has taken a different route than Ty Detmer, the Heisman Trophy winner he would replace in the record book. Alcorn State's senior quarterback is 264 yards shy of breaking the 3-year-old record of 14,665 total yards set by Detmer at Brigham Young.

"Detmer was a pure passer," McNair said. McNair has 14,402 total yards _ 12,337 passing and 2,065 rushing.

Even though Alcorn (5-2) is hosting Southern University, the top-ranked defense in Division I-AA, McNair likely will break Detmer's record Saturday. He is averaging 482.3 total yards.

Butkus field narrowed

ORLANDO _ Thirteen semifinalists for the Butkus Award, going to the nation's outstanding linebacker, were announced by the Downtown Athletic Club.

The club will announce three finalists Nov. 17 and the winner on Dec. 9. Those in the running, in alphabetical order:

Antonio Armstrong, Texas A&M; Stephen Boyd, Boston College; Derrick Brooks, Florida State; Ron Childs, Washington State; Brian Gelzheiser, Penn State; Sean Harris, Arizona; Dana Howard, Illinois; Ted Johnson, Colorado; Steve Morrison, Michigan; Simeon Rice, Illinois; Ed Stewart, Nebraska; Lorenzo Styles, Ohio State; Jerrott Willard, California.

Gift charges raised

ATHENS, Ga. _ Former lineman Shannon Stevens, serving a prison sentence for drug possession, has accused Georgia of giving him money, a Jeep and other gifts in violation of NCAA rules.

According to documents obtained Thursday by the Athens Daily News, Stevens accused recruiting coordinator Bob Pittard and linebackers coach Frank Orgel of providing him with cash, clothes and cars during his abbreviated college career.

Stokes doubtful

LOS ANGELES _ Could J.J. Stokes play Saturday at Arizona?

Maybe. Probably, according to Gerald Finerman, UCLA's team physician.

Will Stokes play? Probably not.

Finerman, who has been treating Stokes for a bruised thigh muscle since the first game of the season, said that he could be available for limited duty.

Coach Terry Donahue said Stokes' condition would be reviewed today for a decision on whether to take him to Tucson and, if so, whether he will play.

"I just don't think he's going to play," Donahue said.

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