Dogs using precaution with Marshall



Georgia tailback Keith Marshall, who has a right shoulder contusion, practiced in a noncontact jersey for the second day in a row on Wednesday.

Georgia coach Mark Richt said that was just a precaution leading into Saturday’s game with Georgia Tech.

“We just didn’t want him to get lit up on something that was sore,” Richt said. “He’s fine. He’ll play. He’s been practicing all the scout team work stuff.”

• The Bulldogs hope to play in the BCS national title game in Miami on Jan. 7, but Georgia still has a wide range of bowls where it could land if it doesn’t win its final two games.

One is the Chick-fil-A Bowl, which will have two representatives at Saturday’s game. The bowl said both Georgia and Georgia Tech are “being scouted as potential representatives.”


PLAYOFF TV DEAL: The college football playoff system will be televised on ESPN for 12 years once it starts after the 2014 season, the network said Wednesday.

The title game will be played on a Monday, at least a week after the semifinals.

The deal is worth about $470 million a year, a person with knowledge of the terms said.

ESPN will own the rights to all six bowls involved in the four-team playoff system. Conference commissioners had decided that the two semifinals would rotate among those half-dozen sites; the four not involved each year will host major bowl games similar to the current BCS contests.

The title game will be bid out each season through a separate process.

The sites for the host bowls are still to be determined, though the most likely landing spots are the Fiesta Bowl in Glendale, Ariz., the Cotton Bowl in Arlington, Texas, and the Chick-fil-A Bowl in Atlanta.


FLORIDA: Will have its starting quarterback back in the starting lineup against one of its biggest rivals.

Coach Will Muschamp said Wednesday that sophomore Jeff Driskel will return to the starting lineup for Saturday’s game at No. 10 Florida State (10-1).


SOUTHERN CAL: The NCAA was “malicious” in its investigation of a former Southern California assistant football coach who was linked in a report to a scandal surrounding Heisman Trophy-winning tailback Reggie Bush, a judge said Wednesday.

The NCAA’s report on ethical breaches by Todd McNair was flawed, and the former coach has shown a probability he can win his defamation claims, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Frederick Shaller said.

The NCAA had sought to have the case dismissed, but Shaller disagreed. He said after reviewing sealed documents in the McNair inquiry, which was tied to a gift scandal involving Heisman Trophy-winner Reggie Bush, he was convinced that the actions of NCAA investigators were “over the top.”