Originally created 12/08/00

College football notebook



University of South Carolina cornerback Sheldon Brown was named to the American Football Coaches Association All-America team on Thursday.

The junior was a first-team pick and becomes the first Gamecock since Sterling Sharpe in 1987 to be named to a first team to one of the major All-America squads.

Brown led a defense ranked highly in scoring defense, rushing defense, passing defense and total defense. He led the Gamecocks with four interceptions and started all 11 games for South Carolina, which finished 7-4 and will play Ohio State in the Outback Bowl on Jan. 1 in Tampa, Fla.

Brown was the team's third leading tackler with 71 total.

GEORGIA TECH:

Dustin Vaitekunas, a former offensive tackle who left after a harsh disciplinary drill ordered by coach George O'Leary, has applied for re-admission to the school.

Vaitekunas said he would not play football again at Tech - at least not under O'Leary, who has agreed to a new $1.1 million a year contract.

During practice Sept. 25, O'Leary instructed four defensive linemen to simultaneously charge the stationary Vaitekunas to teach him what a quarterback felt like after missed blocks. All four hit the 6-foot-7-inch, 314-pound lineman, some full bore. O'Leary claimed the players misunderstood his intent.

Vaitekunas was not seriously injured, but he left campus. His mother, Wanda Charpring, accused O'Leary of excessive punishment and hired a lawyer to explore pursuing criminal charges.

FLORIDA:

Leading rusher Robert Gillespie could miss the Sugar Bowl after arthroscopic surgery on his right knee.

Gillespie, a junior, had cartilage damage in his knee. Doctors estimate a three-to-six-week recovery and said his status is questionable for the Jan. 2 game against No. 2 Miami.

Gillespie started six of the 11 games he played this season and rushed for 678 yards and five touchdowns.

He ran for 45 yards in the SEC title game Saturday as a backup. Earnest Graham, who had moved into Gillespie's starting position, had 169 yards in Florida's best rushing performance this season.

VANDERBILT:

Linebacker Jamie Winborn said he will make himself eligible for the NFL draft next spring and bypass his senior year.

Winborn led the Southeastern Conference in tackling as a freshman and sophomore. He was second on the team this year with 105, despite being suspended for the first two games because of dealings with a financial adviser.