Michigan State will be without leading receiver B.J. Cunningham for the Capital One Bowl after he broke his foot in practice.

The school says Cunningham hurt himself Saturday and had surgery the next day. The junior is expected to recover in time for spring practice.

The seventh-ranked Spartans face 15th-ranked Alabama in the Capital One Bowl on Jan. 1.

Cunningham led the team with 50 receptions during the regular season, for 611 yards and nine touchdowns. Michigan State does have other options, though. Mark Dell caught 49 passes for 761 yards, and Keshawn Martin added 29 catches.

Cunningham is trying to make the best of the situation.

"Bored at home . . . mom won't let me move unless its to go use the bathroom lol," Cunningham tweeted yesterday.

"B.J. had another outstanding season, and I know that he'll work hard during his rehab and set himself up for a big senior year," Michigan State coach Mark Dantonio said. "Fortunately, wide receiver is a position of strength for this football team, so B.J.'s injury will provide opportunities for others to step forward and make plays for us offensively."

Noteworthy

* West Virginia senior cornerback Brandon Hogan has officially been ruled out of the Dec. 28 Champs Sports Bowl against North Carolina State with a torn ACL in his left knee, according to a report on ESPN.com. He suffered the injury in the regular-season finale victory over Rutgers. Hogan, who was suspended for one game earlier this year after a DUI arrest, had 37 tackles and three interceptions this season.

* Syracuse senior punter Rob Long will have to undergo post-operation treatment after doctors found malignant cells in a brain tumor removed a week ago.

Orange coach Doug Marrone says Long is expected to be at the Pinstripe Bowl when Syracuse plays Kansas State on Dec. 30 at Yankee Stadium. Marrone says treatment is expected to begin after New Year's.

Long said in a statement released by the university that "we remain optimistic and positive toward a favorable outcome."

* Pittsburgh football coach Mike Haywood apparently doesn't plan to retain any of coach Dave Wannstedt's assistant coaches.

Haywood interviewed Wannstedt's staff after being hired on Thursday, but no announcement has been made about any staying.

Miami assistant head coach Bill Elias is accompanying Haywood to Pitt. Elias formerly was the head coach at Gannon.

Pitt has not yet said if Wannstedt will coach the Panthers (7-5) in the Jan. 8 Compass Bowl against Kentucky (6-6). Wannstedt was forced to resign following a 7-5 season.

* No special plans for Joe Paterno on his 84th birthday - just two Penn State practices.

The Nittany Lions spent the day drilling in the morning and afternoon in Clearwater, Fla., as they get ready for the Outback Bowl against Florida on Jan. 1.