CFB notebook: Notre Dame QB Book expected to start against Syracuse

The Sports Xchange

November 12, 2018 at 3:52 pm.

Notre Dame quarterback Ian Book is expected to be under center for Saturday’s game against Syracuse at Yankee Stadium.

Coach Brian Kelly said Book is expected to practice on Tuesday after missing Saturday’s game versus Florida State with an upper-body injury. Barring any setbacks, Kelly said that Book should get the nod over Brandon Wimbush for the Fighting Irish (10-0).

Notre Dame is ranked No. 3 in this week’s Associated Press poll and was No. 3 in last week’s College Football Playoffs rankings. Syracuse is No. 12 in this week’s AP poll and was No. 13 in last week’s CFP rankings. New CFP rankings will be released Tuesday night.

Book sustained his injury in Notre Dame’s 31-21 win at Northwestern on Nov. 3. He watched Wimbush toss three first-half touchdowns in a 42-13 triumph over the Seminoles on Saturday. Wimbush also rushed for 68 yards on 12 carries but was intercepted twice against Florida State.

Book has completed 74.5 percent of his passes for 1,824 yards and 15 touchdowns with four interceptions this season. He has also rushed for 218 yards and four scores.

–Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa has been bothered by a knee injury in recent weeks, but head coach Nick Saban said he plans to have Tagovailoa play this week against The Citadel.

Tagovailoa left the Mississippi State game on Saturday after getting hit on his right knee, which is the one that has bothered him. But Saban said Tagovailoa is OK and will practice in preparation for Saturday’s game against The Citadel, which will be a huge underdog.

Saban was asked Monday if he would consider leaving Tagovailoa on the bench for Saturday’s game to allow him to rest the knee.

“No. Why would we do that?” Saban said. “I mean, to say this was not an important game or he doesn’t need to play? I think we need to do a better job of the people playing around him, doing what they’re supposed to do so he doesn’t get hit. And he needs to do a better job of stepping up in the pocket and getting rid of the ball, which he had several opportunities to do.

“Some of these hits could be avoided by better execution, and I think that’s what we’re going to focus on, not trying to take a guy out of the game so he can’t improve or do what he needs to do to get better.”

Tagovailoa was sacked four times against Mississippi State and sat out the fourth quarter. However, Saban said Tagovailoa could have returned if needed in the Tide’s 24-0 win.

–Duke safety Dylan Singleton will be sidelined indefinitely with a broken ankle.

The school reported that Singleton underwent surgery Sunday to repair the injury sustained a day earlier in the first half of a 42-35 victory over North Carolina.

Singleton is the 15th player with starting experience for Duke to miss at least one game this season due to injury. He will sit out the team’s final two contests — including this weekend’s game at Clemson (10-0, 7-0 Atlantic Coast Conference) — and likely a bowl game as a result of the surgery.

The junior recorded 73 tackles in 10 contests and had four games with at least 10 for the Blue Devils (7-3, 3-3).