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CFB Insider

Rodeo Bowl Triumphs, Transfer Portal Turns

Crowned by Sports Illustrated as "unassailably the best bowl week diversion," the 2022 Rodeo Bowl presented by Kroger took home the esteemed "Best Event Award" at the Bowl Season Awards during the industry's annual conference.

As the Rodeo Bowl basks in its well-deserved accolade, the college football world gears up for the spring transfer portal, which brings with it the potential for significant changes in teams' dynamics.

The annual migration of college football players in search of new opportunities is in full swing, and the sport is bracing for the ripple effects these changes will have.

The spring transfer portal, which opened on April 15, provides 15 days for athletes to seek fresh horizons and for programs to reinforce their squads.

The portal has become a focal point of excitement this season, sending tremors through the college football world as star players embark on bold new journeys.

Among the early transfers, former Michigan Wolverines' starting quarterback Cade McNamara has bid farewell to Ann Arbor for a fresh start with the Iowa Hawkeyes. 

McNamara's move comes after a mixed-success season at Michigan, and the change of scenery could be the catalyst he needs to thrive truly.

In another attention-grabbing move, DJ Uiagalelei, once considered Trevor Lawrence's successor at Clemson, has opted to leave the renowned program for new opportunities at Oregon State.

The highly sought-after quarterback's decision holds the potential to disrupt the Pac-12 and establish the Beavers as a formidable presence on the national stage.

As the spring transfer portal spins, college football fans and analysts eagerly anticipate more announcements. With additional high-profile players expected to reveal their decisions in the coming days, the impact of this year's portal will undoubtedly reshape the sport's landscape and set the stage for an exciting and unpredictable 2023 season.

Here's a list of some players who have decided to enter the transfer portal and attend a new school this fall:

1. WR Jordan Hudson, TCU

2. CB Bobby Taylor, Texas A&M

3. DB Jahquez Robinson, Alabama

4. DT Tywone Malone, Ole Miss

5. TE Elijah Brown, Alabama

6. RB Sy'Veon Wilkerson, Jackson State

7. LB Brenden Grant, Florida State

8. CB Jalil Tucker, Oregon

9. WR Brenen Thompson, Texas

10. DB Jaden Davis, Oklahoma



NRG Stadium to Host Two Matchups for 2023 Concacaf Gold Cup

This year’s Gold Cup marks the seventh edition hosted at NRG Stadium

HOUSTON – Today, in the 17th edition of the Concacaf Gold Cup, (the Confederation of North and Central America and Caribbean Association Football) announced that NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas will host the matchups of Haiti vs. Qatar and Mexico vs. Honduras in the 2023 Gold Cup. The two matches are scheduled for Sunday, June 25, with Haiti vs. Qatar scheduled for 5 p.m. CT and Mexico vs. Honduras starting at 7 p.m. CT. 


The Concacaf Gold Cup, which takes place biannually, is the official national team championship of the region, which includes North America, Central America and the Caribbean. This year’s tournament is scheduled to take place from June 16 to July 16, 2023 and marks the seventh time NRG Stadium will host the Gold Cup, which is tied with Soldier Field for a record number in the history of the tournament. NRG Stadium hosted over 70,000 fans per match in 2019 and 2021, which marked the most attended matches in the entire tournament.  

“We are honored to once again host the Concacaf Gold Cup at NRG Stadium,” said Lone Star Sports and Entertainment General Manager David Fletcher. “Houston is home to the best soccer fans in the country and we look forward to providing them another edition of this world-class event. Our community is excited for this draw and we are looking forward to welcoming the participating teams to our vibrant city.”

Mexico and Honduras will open their respective tournament runs at NRG Stadium. The 2023 Concacaf Gold Cup marks the Mexican National Team’s 20th visit to NRG Stadium, the most appearances at any venue in the United States. In 2021, Mexico defeated Honduras 3-0 in the Gold Cup quarterfinal to advance to the semifinal at NRG Stadium against Canada.

Haiti will face off against Qatar, the host-nation team of the 2022 World Cup, in the first match of the doubleheader. Qatar is returning to the Concacaf Gold Cup for the second time, following their appearance in 2021 which also featured a match in Houston.  

In addition to two matches being played at NRG Stadium, the city of Houston will host four other matches at Shell Energy Stadium, making Houston the only market with two host venues in this year’s tournament.   

The full match schedule and venue assignments for all 15 stadiums were announced at today’s tournament draw in Los Angeles. For more information about the 2023 Concacaf Gold Cup, including schedules, tickets and other details, click here.  

About Lone Star Sports & Entertainment

Lone Star Sports & Entertainment is an event management company founded in 2003 that is closely affiliated with the NFL’s Houston Texans. Since its founding, LSSE has established itself as the leading sports event promoter in Houston. In addition to producing annual college football events such as the TaxAct Texas Bowl, LSSE has emerged as a premier promoter for international soccer matches, including the Copa de Lone Star, Copa America Centenario, the 2010 MLS All-Star Game featuring Manchester United, the 2006 FC Barcelona U.S. tour, the International Champions Cup, the 2003 and 2008 matches between the United States and Mexico, and the 2005, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2019, 2021 and 2023 CONCACAF Gold Cups.



Houston’s NRG Stadium, Shell Energy Stadium to host 2023 Concacaf Gold Cup

Tournament will be played in 15 stadiums across 14 cities; Houston is only city with 2 venues selected

Miami, FL (Monday, April 10, 2023) – Concacaf has today announced the 15 stadiums in 14 metropolitan areas that will host matches of the 2023 Concacaf Gold Cup, including two stadiums in Houston. NRG Stadium, home to the Houston Texans, and Shell Energy Stadium, the home of Houston Dynamo FC and the Houston Dash, are each slated to host matches in this summer’s tournament.

The 17th edition of Concacaf’s flagship competition for men's national teams will be played between June 16 – July 16 and will crown the best national team in the region. Today’s announcement comes after the Confederation confirmed that Our Final, on Sunday, July 16, was awarded to Los Angeles’ SoFi Stadium.

Houston is the only city with two stadiums selected to host matches in the tournament. The 2023 Concacaf Gold Cup is a key part of a series of championship sporting events brought to Houston through the efforts of the Harris County-Houston Sports Authority, including the 2023 NCAA Men’s Final Four, the 2024 College Football Playoff National Championship, the 2024 Junior Olympic Games and the 2026 FIFA World Cup.

Harris County-Houston Sports Authority CEO Janis Burke said: “With our  large, diverse and incredibly passionate soccer community and a pair of world-class soccer stadiums, it’s no surprise that Houston has not one, but two venues selected to host matches in this summer’s Gold Cup tournament. It’s such an amazing time to be a sports fan in Houston. Our organization is proud to lead the bid efforts and to work with our sports teams to continue bringing these type of amazing events to our region.”

This summer marks the seventh time NRG Stadium will host the Gold Cup. NRG Stadium was the most attended Gold Cup venue in 2021, when Mexico defeated Canada 2-1 in a semifinal match in front of over 70,000 fans.

Lone Star Sports and Entertainment General Manager David Fletcher said: “We are honored to once again host the Concacaf Gold Cup at NRG Stadium. Houston is home to the best soccer fans in the country, and we look forward to providing them another edition of this world-class event. Our community is excited to see this Friday’s draw and welcome participating teams to our vibrant city very soon.”

The 2023 edition of the Gold Cup is the sixth tournament to feature matches at the recently-renovated Shell Energy Stadium. The venue has hosted every edition of the competition since 2013.

Houston Dynamo Football Club Chief Operating Officer Jessica O’Neill said: “We are excited to showcase a newly renovated venue for the Gold Cup this summer and offer fans an enhanced experience as they support their national team at Shell Energy Stadium. We take pride in ensuring that the hospitality of Houston is enjoyed by all who will join us for these world-class competitions.”

The 2023 Gold Cup is a key part of the region’s vibrant summer of football, which will also include the Final of the Scotiabank Concacaf Champions League on June 4, and the Concacaf Nations League Finals in Las Vegas, NV, between June 15-18. 

Regarding this exciting 2023 Gold Cup announcement, Concacaf President and FIFA Vice President, Victor Montagliani, said: “The Concacaf Gold Cup is our flagship competition and showcases the very best of men’s national team football in the region. With each passing edition this competition has reached new heights on and off the pitch and I am certain the 2023 tournament will deliver outstanding football and capture the imagination of fans across our confederation and beyond.

“The 15 host cities and venues we have selected all have strong track records of hosting elite football, and world class events. I want to thank each and every one of them for their commitment to Concacaf, to our Gold Cup and to our sport. This is a tremendous time for football in the region with Nations Leagues, men’s and women’s Gold Cups, and other exciting national team and club competitions taking place over the next three years as we head towards the FIFA World Cup 2026.”

“I look forward with great anticipation to watching the Gold Cup Prelims in June and enjoying compelling football involving all the Gold Cup teams right through to the Final and crowning a champion in Los Angeles on July 16.” 

Fans interested in purchasing tickets to the session at NRG Stadium may join the waitlist at

2023 Gold Cup Draw

To kick off the 2023 Gold Cup, Concacaf will conduct the competition’s official draw on Friday, April 14, 2023, at SoFi Stadium. 

The live in-person event will begin at 12:00 pm PT/local time (3:00 pm ET) and will include the participation of Concacaf President and FIFA Vice President, Victor Montagliani, the head coaches of the national teams participating in the 2023 Gold Cup and important guests.

The draw will be available for fans across the region to view on One Soccer (CAN), FS2 (USA), TUDN (USA and MEX), ESPN (Central America and Caribbean), and other regional broadcasters. For other territories, the event will be available on Concacaf GO, Concacaf Facebook page, and Concacaf YouTube channel (all subject to territory restrictions).

For more details regarding the draw, including the procedures and seeded nations, click here. 

The 2023 Concacaf Gold Cup is sponsored by Modelo, Qatar Airways, Toyota and Valvoline.

About Gold Cup

The Concacaf Gold Cup is the Confederation’s premier competition for men’s national teams, crowning a champion every two years. Initially involving eight teams, the Gold Cup expanded into a competition that includes a 12-team Preliminary Round and 16-team Group Stage, all which qualify via the Concacaf Nations League. The tournament has been contested on 16 previous occasions. Mexico owns a tournament-record eight titles, followed by the United States with seven and Canada with one. For more information about the Concacaf Gold Cup, click here. 

About Concacaf

The Confederation of North, Central America, and Caribbean Association Football (Concacaf) is one of FIFA’s six continental confederations, servicing 41 Member Associations, from Canada in the north to Guyana, Suriname, and French Guiana in the south. Concacaf means football first. Our members are united by a shared vision: Love For Our Game, as well as a unique mission, to develop, promote and manage football throughout the region with integrity, transparency, and passion in order to inspire participation in the game.

About Lone Star Sports and Entertainment

Lone Star Sports & Entertainment is an event management company founded in 2003 that is closely affiliated with the NFL’s Houston Texans. Since its founding, LSSE has established itself as the leading sports event promoter in Houston. In addition to producing annual college football events such as the TaxAct Texas Bowl, LSSE has emerged as a premier promoter for international soccer matches, including the Copa de Lone Star, Copa America Centenario, the 2010 MLS All-Star Game featuring Manchester United, the 2006 FC Barcelona U.S. tour, the International Champions Cup, the 2003 and 2008 matches between the United States and Mexico, and the 2005, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2019, 2021 and 2023 CONCACAF Gold Cups.


CFB Insider

2023 Unleashed: College Football's Spring Blitz

As college football enthusiasts eagerly await the return of their favorite pastime, they can finally celebrate the start of spring practice, signaling the countdown to much-anticipated spring games. 

These annual showdowns provide a sneak peek into the 2023 season, unveiling the potential and promise of new and returning players. 

Missouri was the first from the Power Five to hit the gridiron when they took the field on March 18. 

Spectators were treated to an early look at the Tigers' restructured roster and a preview of the team's prospects for the upcoming season. 

The remaining Power Five teams are slated to follow suit throughout April, presenting their lineups and providing fans with an exhilarating preview of the forthcoming season.

BYU and four other Big 12 programs began preparations for the 2023 season last week, while the remaining nine schools commenced spring practices this week. 

These games present an opportunity for athletes to showcase their abilities and contend for starting positions. 

Concurrently, the coaching staff can assess their rosters and make critical determinations before the 2023 season.

As spring games transpire nationwide, fans can stay engaged by tuning in to various available television and streaming options. 

So don't miss out on the action - check out the times below to see when the SEC and Big 12 kick off their spring games and the corresponding viewing times!

Big 12

Baylor Saturday, April 22 12 p.m. ESPN+
Iowa State Saturday, April 22 11 a.m. --
Kansas Friday, April 7 7 p.m. --
Kansas State Saturday, April 15 -- --
Oklahoma Saturday, April 22 2:30 p.m. ESPN+
Oklahoma State None -- --
TCU Saturday, April 15 -- --
Texas Saturday, April 22 1 p.m. --
Texas Tech Saturday, April 22 12 p.m. ESPN+
West Virgina Saturday, April 22 12 p.m. ESPN+



Alabama Saturday, April 22 2 p.m. SEC Network+
Arkansas Saturday, April 15 12 p.m. SEC Network+
Auburn Saturday, April 8 1 p.m. SEC Network+
Florida Thursday, April 13 6:30 p.m. SEC Network+
Georgia Saturday, April 15 3 p.m. ESPN2
Kentucky  None -- --
LSU Saturday, April 15 1 p.m. SEC Network+
Mississippi Saturday, April 15 2 p.m. SEC Network+
Mississippi State Saturday, April 15 12 p.m. SEC Network+
Missouri Saturday, March 18 11 a.m. SEC Network+
South Carolina Saturday, April 15 7 p.m. SEC Network+
Tennesse Saturday, April 15 2:30 p.m. SEC Network+
Texas A&M Saturday, April 15 4 p.m. SEC Network+
Vanderbilt Saturday, April 8 6 p.m. SEC Network+


CFB Insider

New Year, New Players, New Possibilities

As spring practice draws near, the stage is set for the best incoming prospects to showcase their skills and stand out from the crowd.


So, it's no surprise that college football has adopted the "what have you done for me lately" mentality in 2023, reflecting the impressive impact of highly skilled transfers and first-year players in the 2022 season.


The transfer portal has become a goldmine for college football programs, providing an influx of talented and experienced players that can help coaches revamp their rosters. 


One position, the quarterback, has seen a major shakeup as many new signal-callers have found their way to different programs. As a result, the college football landscape is transforming as coaches aim to put their teams in the best position to succeed.


As fans eagerly await the start of the upcoming season, here are some of the standout newcomers to keep an eye on:


Alabama Crimson Tide


As Alabama football sets its sights on the 2023 season, fans of the Roll Tide can look forward to a new era of dominant offense. Coach Saban and his team have added three explosive weapons to their arsenal in the form of the top two running backs of the 2023 class, Richard Young and Justice Haynes. The Tide have also added five-star offensive lineman Kadyn Proctor and a new quarterback. With a potential emphasis on the running game, Young and Haynes could shine and be formidable forces on the field.


TCU Horned Frogs


The TCU Horned Frogs faced some significant losses this off-season, with key players such as QB Max Duggan, WR Quentin Johnston, and CB Tre'vius Hodges-Tomlinson departing the team. However, TCU is determined to build on the momentum from its successful 2022 season and has set its sights on acquiring top talent. The Horned Frogs have made a strong statement by landing six transfers from the SEC, including three from powerhouse program Alabama. This impressive haul consists of the highly touted JoJo Earle, a 5-9 wideout and kick returner rated No. 73 in the 2021 ESPN 300. With this talented addition, TCU aims to sign its highest-rated recruiting class in recent history, solidifying its position as a dominant force in the Big 12.


Texas Longhorns


Longhorn Nation is in high spirits after securing a commitment from one of the nation'snation's premier quarterbacks, Arch Manning, in July. Despite the transfer portal leading to talent departures from other programs, Manning's arrival has energized fans and heightened anticipation for the talented prospects joining the squad in the upcoming season. One such prospect is the 2023 class's top-rated linebacker, Anthony Hill, who sits at No. 16 in the ESPN 300 rankings. The combination of Hill's skills and Manning's talent has Longhorn fans eagerly awaiting the start of the new season.


LSU Tigers


As the LSU Tigers look to bounce back from a heartbreaking loss in the SEC championship game, they have moved to address a key weakness on their roster. The transfer portal has proven to be a valuable resource for college football programs, and LSU has taken advantage of it by adding two talented cornerbacks to the roster. Denver Harris, ranked No. 5 in the 2022 class, brings a wealth of experience to the secondary, having made an impact as a true freshman at Texas A&M. And Chestnut, a former Freshman All-American at Syracuse, has proven himself over two seasons with 83 tackles, four interceptions, and nine passes defended in 24 games. These two transfers could play a significant role in helping the Tigers reach their goals for the 2023 season.