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College Football Today

College Football Today

STARS

-Denard Robinson, Michigan, rushed 24 times for 235 yards, threw for a touchdown and helped lead the Wolverines to a 44-13 rout at Purdue.

-Tajh Boyd, Clemson, threw for a career-high 397 yards and two TDs, ran for another score and caught a pass for a 2-point conversion and the No. 15 Tigers beat Georgia Tech 47-31.

-Josh Nunes, Stanford, threw for a career-high 360 yards and two TDs in the No. 18 Cardinal's 54-48 win over Arizona.

-Matt Scott, Arizona, set school records by completing 45 of 69 passes while throwing for 491 yards and three TDs in the Wildcats' 54-48 loss to No. 18 Stanford.

- Joe Southwick threw for three touchdowns and Boise State took advantage of five turnovers to breeze past Southern Mississippi 40-14.

-Josh Woodrum, Liberty, threw for 373 yards and three TDs in a 42-35 win over Gardner-Webb.

-Mike Gillislee, Florida, ran for a career-high 146 yards and two TDs, bringing the No. 10 Gators to life in the second half to beat fourth-ranked LSU 14-6.

-John Hubert, Kansas State, ran for 101 yards and four TDs on just 10 carries to lead the No. 7 Wildcats to a 56-16 rout over rival Kansas.

-Gio Bernard, North Carolina, rushed for a career-high 262 yards and a TD to help the Tar Heels beat Virginia Tech 48-34.

-Trent Steelman, Army, rushed for 141 yards and three TDs to help the Black Knights beat Boston College 34-31 to snap an eight-game losing streak.

-Tyler Van Tubbergen, Western Michigan, threw five TD passes and ran for a score in a 52-14 victory over Massachusetts.

-Colton Chapple, Harvard, threw three of his four TD passes to Andrew Berg in a 45-13 victory over Cornell.

-Mike Colvin, Lehigh, passed for 415 yards and four TDs and ran for a fifth score in a 35-14 win over Columbia.

-Jamal Jackson, Appalachian State, threw four TD passes, ran for one more and had 398 all-purpose yards to lead the Mountaineers to a 35-23 win over Elon.

-Kade Bell, Jacksonville, threw three of his four TD passes to Andrew Robustelli in a 38-17 victory over Morehead State.

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FROGS' STREAKS OVER

The longest winning streak and conference winning streaks in the FBS are over.

Jared Barnett threw three touchdowns to Josh Lenz, who later had a scoring toss of his own on a trick play, and Iowa State beat No. 15 TCU 37-23, two days after the Horned Frogs suspended quarterback Casey Pachall.

TCU had its 12-game winning streak, tops in major college football, snapped in its first Big 12 home game.

The Frogs had won a nation-best 25 conference games in a row, the first 24 while winning the Mountain West championship each of the past three seasons. They won their Big 12 debut at Kansas three weeks ago, and hadn't lost a conference game since Nov. 6, 2008, at Utah.

Iowa State won for only the third time in 33 road games against a Top 25 team since 1996. Barnett had another one of those wins, as a freshman last season at Texas Tech in his first career start.

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PENN STATE RALLIES

With his team a little stunned after giving up a 75-yard punt return for a touchdown, Penn State coach Bill O'Brien walked up and down the sideline giving players a pep talk.

After everything they've been through over the past year, these Nittany Lions weren't going to be denied, even after trailing by 11 going into the fourth quarter.

Quarterback Matt McGloin had the go-ahead score on a 5-yard touchdown run with 2:37 left, one of three fourth-quarter scores for Penn State, and the Nittany Lions stormed past No. 24 Northwestern 39-28.

The Nittany Lions scored three times in the final 9:49, starting with McGloin's 6-yard touchdown pass to Allen Robinson on fourth down as the receiver dragged along the back line of the end zone. Michael Zordich had a 2-point conversion run to get Penn State within 28-25 before McGloin's scramble for a score sent the homecoming weekend crowd into a frenzy.

The Nittany Lions then stuffed Northwestern's last-gasp drive after Trevor Siemian's pass for Kain Colter was tipped away on fourth down. Zordich added a 3-yard touchdown run with 1:30 left to put a punctuation mark on the wild finish.

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NUMBERS

9-Sacks, including five by Michael Cole, in Maine's 26-3 win over Delaware.

293-Career receptions by Duke's Conner Vernon to set the Atlantic Coast Conference record.

500-Wins by Bowling Green in its 94 seasons after beating Akron 24-10. The Falcons have 349 losses and 51 ties.

614-Yards rushing by Georgia Southern in its 45-13 win over Western Carolina.

3,905-Career yards rushing by Michigan's Denard Robinson, setting a Big Ten record for a quarterback and breaking a tie with Kent State's Josh Cribbs to move into fifth place in NCAA history.

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ANOTHER WILD FINISH

Another wild overtime finish in the Navy-Air Force rivalry. Only, this time, the Midshipmen came out on top in their quest to regain the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy.

Navy beat Air Force 28-21 when right guard Jake Zuzek recovered freshman quarterback Keenan Reynolds' fumbled snap in the end zone.

After the unusual touchdown, defensive end Wes Henderson knocked down Connor Dietz's pass on fourth-and-6 from the 21 to seal Navy's win, a significant first step in the Midshipmen's quest to regain the trophy that represents superiority among the three service academies.

Last year's game also went to overtime in Annapolis, Md., with Air Force prevailing 35-34 thanks to a controversial call. Officials ruled a touchdown celebration by Navy went overboard, and penalized the Midshipmen for unsportsmanlike conduct. The long conversion attempt from 35 yards was blocked by Alex Means. Then, the Falcons scored, and Parker Herrington added the conversion to give Air Force the wild win.

Herrington had the chance to win it again this time, but his 51-yard field goal attempt sailed wide left as time expired in regulation. It was his second miss of the afternoon and fifth in six tries this season for the senior.

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CHOMP, CHOMP

Florida got its biggest victory yet under second-year coach Will Muschamp, beating the No. 4 Tigers 14-6 in Gainesville, Fla. The 10th-ranked Gators trailed 6-0 at halftime, but scored on consecutive drives by running on 17 of 18 plays. Mike Gillislee ended both of them with 12-yard touchdown runs, one in the third quarter and another early in the fourth. It was third time this season that Florida trailed at half against a Southeastern Conference rival and came back to win.

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DEE-FENSE

Florida safety Matt Elam stripped the ball from LSU's Odell Beckham Jr. following a 56-yard reception on third down in a game the Gators won 14-6 thanks to a dominant defensive performance. The Gators harassed quarterback Zach Mettenberger, who completed 11 of 25 passes for 161 yards, with an interception. Overall, the Tigers were held to 200 yards of offense and eight first downs. ... Michigan State, which gave up nearly 200 yards in the first quarter, held Indiana to 37 yards and two first downs in the second half of a 31-27 win over Indiana. ... No. 22 Rutgers suffocated Connecticut 19-3 to remain undefeated. The Scarlet Knights held UConn's ground game to 53 yards on 28 carries, though UConn benched leading rusher Lyle McCombs for the first quarter after he was arrested and charged with second-degree breaching the peace on Friday.

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YOU GET A LOSS! AND YOU GET A LOSS! AND ...

LSU was one of four undefeated teams to lose in Saturday's early games, falling 14-6 at No. 10 Florida. Iowa State handed No. 15 TCU its first loss, 37-23, to stop the Horned Frogs' 12-game winning streak, which had been the longest in major college football. Penn State made it four straight victories by beating No. 24 Northwestern 39-28. The Wildcats were trying to go to 6-0. Also, unranked Texas Tech lost 41-20 at home against No. 17 Oklahoma.

Two late games featured undefeated teams playing each other - No. 5 Georgia at No. 6 South Carolina and No. 8 West Virginia at No. 11 Texas.

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The Caps' Cup-winning roster is a lesson in building through the draft

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USA TODAY Sports

The Caps' Cup-winning roster is a lesson in building through the draft

Every year, the Stanley Cup-winning team shows the importance of building through the draft. This year, that team is the Washington Capitals.

With the NHL Draft starting on Friday, let’s break down the Capitals roster from the playoffs to see just how it was put together.

Acquired by the draft: Nicklas Backstrom, Madison Bowey, Travis Boy, Andre Burakovsky, John Carlson, Christian Djoos, Shane Gersich, Philipp Grubauer, Braden Holtby, Evgeny Kuznetsov, Dmitry Orlov, Alex Ovechkin, Chandler Stephenson, Jakub Vrana, Nathan Walker, Tom Wilson

Acquired as a free agent: Jay Beagle, Alex Chiasson, Brett Connolly, Matt Niskanen, Brooks Orpik, Devante Smith-Pelly

Acquired by trade: Lars Eller, Jakub Jerabek, Michal Kempny, T.J. Oshie

The first thing to note is that the vast majority of Washington’s roster is made up of draft picks. Specifically, the majority of the Caps’ top six on offense, three of its top six defensemen and both goalies were drafted by the team.

Of the free agent signings, only two were big money players in Matt Niskanen and Brooks Orpik. In 2014, defense was a major question mark for the Caps and Brian MacLellan made a splash as the new general manager by signing both blue liners to big deals. The majority of the signings, however, are cheap, low risk and high reward players.

Finally, the trades include players who filled obvious needs. The Caps needed Oshie to shore up the top six, Eller was brought in to be the third line center, Kempny stepped in as a top-four defenseman and Jerabek was brought in for defensive depth.

So what does this show us?

First, the draft is absolutely critical to building a team’s core. True superstar players are hard to come by. Once a team gets one, they do everything they can to keep them. The draft is a team's first opportunity to acquire a certain player and, if they have superstar potential, sign them long-term. John Tavares this season looks headed to free agency and the buzz around him stems from the fact that he is very much the exception, not the rule. The base of the Caps’ Stanley Cup team was built by drafting star players like Ovechkin, Backstrom, Kuznetsov, Carlson, Holtby, etc.

This also shows the importance of the draft for depth. In the salary cap era, teams need to find enough cap room for their stars and their depth players. Having young players is absolutely critical because their low cap hit allows for the team to sign the expensive stars and make the important addition in free agency  or by trade. This is a formula that only works if those young players are productive as well.

Players like Vrana and Burakovsky, for example, played big roles in the playoff run, but also carried low cap hits.

So the Caps built a core through the draft and filled key roles with trades and mostly cheap free agent signings.

There is no formula for how to win a Stanley Cup, if there was everyone would do it, but this is about as close as you can come to one. A team has to draft very well and then build around those draft picks to be successful. You cannot hope to build simply through trades and free agency because of the cost. Trades always require sending an asset the other way and very often that asset turns out to be prospects or draft picks. Free agency, meanwhile, requires team overpay for top targets leading to serious cap trouble down the line.

There are always trades and free agent signings that prove to be important, but those are only pieces to a much large puzzle. To win a Stanley Cup, you have to build through the draft.

MORE CAPITALS COVERAGE:

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2018 NBA Draft: TV, live stream and radio info, things to watch

2018 NBA Draft: TV, live stream and radio info, things to watch

The 2018 NBA Draft will take place on Thursday night as the newest wave of potential superstars like DeAndre Ayton, Marvin Bagley III, Mo Bamba and Luka Doncic enter the league. Here is everything you need to know for the big night...

2018 NBA DRAFT

When: 7 p.m.
Where: Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
TV: ESPN
Live stream: WatchESPN.com
Radio: ESPN

Wizards draft picks: 15th overall in the first round, 44th overall in the second round

First round order:

1. Phoenix Suns
2. Sacramento Kings
3. Atlanta Hawks
4. Memphis Grizzlies
5. Dallas Mavericks
6. Orlando Magic
7. Chicago Bulls
8. Cleveland Cavaliers
9. New York Knicks
10. Philadelphia 76ers
11. Charlotte Hornets
12. Los Angeles Clippers
13. Los Angeles Clippers
14. Denver Nuggets
15. Washington Wizards
16. Phoenix Suns
17. Milwaukee Bucks
18. San Antonio Spurs
19. Atlanta Hawks
20. Minnesota Timberwolves
21. Utah Jazz
22. Chicago Bulls
23. Indiana Pacers
24.Portland Trail Blazers
25. Los Angeles Lakers
26. Philadelphia 76ers
27. Boston Celtics
28. Golden State Warriors
29. Brooklyn Nets
30. Atlanta Hawks

Top prospects:

1. DeAndre Ayton, C, Arizona
2. Marvin Bagley III, Duke
3. Luka Doncic, Slovenia
4. Jaren Jackson, Jr., Michigan State
5. Mo Bamba, Texas
6. Michael Porter, Jr., Missouri
7. Wendell Carter, Duke
8. Trae Young, Oklahoma
9. Collin Sexton, Alabama
10. Kevin Knox, Kentucky

Three things to watch...

Will Leonard get traded?

Last year's draft featured some big trades including Jimmy Butler going to the Timberwolves. This year, there seems to be at least a decent chance it happens with Kawhi Leonard of the Spurs. He wants a trade and they have been meeting with him in recent days, perhaps for a last-ditch pitch to remain with the team. If he gets dealt on draft night, it wouldn't be a huge surprise.

Who will the Kings pick?

A consensus has built for Ayton to go No. 1 to the Suns. After that, it's a major crapshoot and whomever the Kings select will produce a domino effect from there on down. Will they take Bagley, the safe pick, or go a riskier route with Doncic or maybe even Porter, Jr.? The best bet at this point appears to be Bagley, but nobody truly knows.

Where will Young and Porter, Jr. go?

The two most interesting prospects in this draft are Young and Porter, Jr. Young was a sensation in college basketball, but is undersized and appears to be boom-or-bust. He could flame out quickly at the next level or be some iteration of the next Stephen Curry. Porter, Jr. played only three games in college due to a back injury and now has hip issues as well. His talent is undeniable, but his injury history represents significant risk.

CLICK HERE FOR OUR 2018 NBA MOCK DRAFT

For more on the NBA Draft, check out our preview special episode of the Wizards Tipoff podcast: