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Jayru Campbell (Cass Tech) wins Harlon Hill Trophy

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Ferris State junior quarterback Jayru Campbell was named the Harlon Hill Trophy winner Friday.

The Harlon Hill Trophy is awarded to the individual selected as the most valuable player in NCAA Division II and is considered to be the Division II equivalent of the Heisman Trophy. Campbell becomes the second Ferris State player to win the award. Fellow Bulldogs quarterback Jason Vander Laan won the twice award in 2014 and 2015.

To win the award, Jayru Campbell beat out eight other finalists including Hillsdale quarterback Chance Stewart. According to Ferris State, Campbell threw for 2,832 yards and 26 touchdowns while completing  60.6% of his passes and tossing just five interceptions. He also led the Bulldogs in rushing with 1,338 yards and 20 tds. Add in his one receiving touchdown and that makes Campbell responsible for 47 total touchdowns on the season.

Campbell was also named first-team AP All-America earlier this week and was recognized as the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference player of the year.

Campbell will be presented the Harlon Hill at a banquet in Little Rock, Ark., on Jan. 10.

Jayru Campbell will lead the 15-0 Ferris State Bulldogs against the 13-0 Valdosta State Blazers of Georgia in Saturday’s NCAA Division II Football Championship game in McKinney, Texas.

Making the most out of second chances

While the accolades have been piling up for Campbell in his first season playing at Ferris, the former Detroit Cass Tech star’s journey has been long and winding. After leading Cass Tech to back-to-back state titles as a freshman and sophomore, Campbell was arrested twice. Once for assaulting a school security guard and once for a case of domestic violence involving a girlfriend.

Following the arrests, Campbell lost his Michigan State football scholarship. After losing his chance at playing college football for a Power Five program, he found himself at Garden City Community College in Kansas.

Campbell transferred to Ferris State after winning a national championship at Garden City, where he played receiver, in 2016. Campbell sat out the entire 2017 season with a redshirt so he could focus on himself and make the most out of the second chance opportunity.

When asked why he gave Campbell a second chance, Ferris State head coach Tony Annese had the following to say:

“I was a high school teacher for 25 years. I had to give people second chances every day. That’s what an education does. I hope all coaches out there are willing to work with young people to bring out the best that’s in them — focus on the positive traits they may have, not the negative experience they had.”

While he still has doubters, there is no denying that so far Campbell has made the most out of his second chance.

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General Topic

Michigan Football’s biggest playoff Roadblocks

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Michigan had one of the toughest schedules in the country in 2018, and it isn’t going to get any easier in 2019.  Here is a look at some of the Wolverine’s most difficult games in 2019.

Michigan vs. Michigan State 

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Michigan will play Michigan State on November 16th in the Big House where they didn’t lose in 2018.  The Spartans had a disappointing 2018 season with an embarrassing loss to the Wolverines where they only had 94 yards.  Michigan State doesn’t have huge expectations for 2019, but they usually excel in those conditions like in 2017.  The Michigan vs. Michigan State game is always close, and I expect this season to be no different.

Early Prediction: Michigan-27 Michigan State-21

Michigan vs. Notre Dame 

Michigan will look to avenge an early season loss against the Irish in 2018 when they host Notre Dame on October 26th.  Notre Dame had a great 2018 season making the College Football Playoff for the first time and winning 12 games.  Both teams lost a lot of talent from last season but should still be highly ranked heading into the week eight matchup.  This very likely will be a night game in Michigan Stadium, and the atmosphere should be excellent.

Early Prediction: Michigan-30 Notre Dame-20

Michigan @ Wisconsin

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The Wolverines will travel to Camp Randall on September 21st to take on Wisconsin.  Camp Randall is one of the harshest environments in the country and Michigan has struggled there in recent years.  Wisconsin, like Michigan State, had a disappointing season but had a nice win to end the year against Miami and returns Jonathan Taylor, their superstar running back.  This will be Michigan’s first road game in 2019 and will be a tough game to win but Michigan should be the more talented team, and I expect them to pull out a close one.

Early Prediction: Michigan-28 Wisconsin-24

Michigan @ Penn State

Michigan will travel to Happy Valley on October 19th to face Penn State in their annual “whiteout” game.  Happy Valley could be the toughest road environment in the country, and it will be insane on October 19th.  The last time Michigan played at Penn State in a “whiteout” game, they got blown out 42-13.  Penn State lost a lot from 2018 including star QB Trace McSorley and RB Miles Sanders but beating Penn State in Happy Valley might be too hard of a task for the Wolverines.

Early Prediction: Penn State-38 Michigan-31

Michigan @ Ohio State 

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On November 30th Michigan will look to silence the haters and doubters when they host the Buckeyes in the Big House.  No matter what the teams’ records are “The Game” will always be one of the toughest on Michigan’s schedule.  Michigan has lost eight straight vs. the Buckeyes, and Jim Harbaugh still hasn’t beaten them as the Head Coach of Michigan.  Ohio State will be without Urban Meyer this season for the first time since 2011, and they also lost a lot of talent including Dwayne Haskins, a Heisman finalist.  This could be the year that Michigan finally breaks the losing streak.  They have a very talented roster and will get to play “The Game” in front of a home crowd of about 110,000.

Early Prediction: Michigan-42 Ohio State-31

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General Topic

BREAKING: Ohio State quarterback to enter transfer portal

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According to reports, Ohio State quarterback Matt Baldwin will enter the transfer portal.

With Baldwin transferring, the starting QB gig at Ohio State almost certainly belongs to Justin Fields, though he was a heavy favorite to win the job regardless.

 

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Detroit Red Wings News

SHOCKER! Steve Yzerman’s Lightning swept in Round 1 by Columbus

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Wow!

In perhaps the most shocking playoff result in recent memory, the 62-win Tampa Bay Lightning were swept in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs by the Columbus Blue Jackets.

http://gty.im/874354282

Of course, headlines were made before this season began when Lightning GM Steve Yzerman announced he’d be stepping down from that role in the final year of his contract and serve as an advisor. Speculation immediately ran rampant that it was a hint that he’d be returning home to the Detroit Red Wings.

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