Thursday, April 27, 2017

SWAC Football Media Day scheduled for July 14



BIRMINGHAM, Alabama – As summer nears, the excitement and anticipation of a new football season is upon us.

The signal of a season anew begins with the annual Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC) Football Media Day that will once again take place at the Birmingham Marriott on 3590 Grandview Parkway on Friday, July 14.

All head coaches are returners from the 10-member institutions and will be available for interviews at this time.

Among the coaches scheduled to appear will be James Spady (Alabama A&M), Brian Jenkins (Alabama State), Fred McNair (Alcorn State), Broderick Fobbs (Grambling State), Tony Hughes (Jackson State), Rick Comegy (Mississippi Valley State), Willie Simmons (Prairie View A&M), Dawson Odums (Southern), Michael Haywood (Texas Southern), and Monte Coleman (Arkansas-Pine Bluff).

Two players per team will also appear for interview opportunities as well as the revealing of the 2017 SWAC Preseason All-Conference selections and the predicted order of finish conducted via a vote by school head football coaches and sports information directors.

The official start to the 2017 football season will feature live video coverage via SWAC Digital Network. The three-hour broadcast will display a stage session, one-on-one interviews on the set of SDN. In addition, league head coaches and student-athletes will also join SDN live audio stream as part of the continuous coverage on www.swac.org.

A more detailed schedule with information on head coaches and student-athlete interview times will be released at a later date, however the event production will include:

SWAC Commissioner Address
Photo Opportunities
Season Preview by Head Coaches
Championship Promo
SWAC Preseason Teams Announced
SDN Video Stream and SDN Radio
SWAC Audio Drops
Print Media Interviews
One-on-one TV Interviews

COURTESY SWAC MEDIA COMMUNICATIONS

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Juan Dixon comes 'full circle' in being introduced as Coppin State men's basketball coach



BALTIMORE, Maryland -- The day after Coppin State fired Michael Grant last month, Juan Dixon called his attorney in Baltimore.

“I’m going to get that job,” Dixon told Gary Leibowitz.

At the time, Coppin State athletic director Derek Carter knew who Dixon was but didn’t have the former Maryland star in mind.

“He wasn’t on my short list,” Carter said Wednesday.

The force of Dixon’s personality, an impressive resume as a former college star and NBA player and the coaching plan he laid out once he met with Carter a couple of weeks later led to what eventually transpired late last week.

In being introduced as the team’s next coach at a campus news conference Wednesday, it was clear that the 38-year-old Dixon was grateful for what he the “amazing opportunity” he was given to run his own Division I program for the first time.

CONTINUE READING

Clark Atlanta Releases 2017 Football Schedule

ATLANTA, Georgia -- Clark Atlanta Football has finalized the 2017 schedule with 10 games - including eight versus Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference opponents. The schedule also includes an NAIA and Division I opponent.

The Panthers will open the season at home versus Edward Waters from the NAIA ranks at 6:00 P.M. on Sept. 2. CAU will continue at home by hosting Central State the next week at 6:00 P.M. on Sept. 9.

The first road game will be in the third week with a trip to Tuskegee on Sept. 16 with the road trip continuing the next weekend at Lane on Sept. 23.

Clark Atlanta will host Division I opponent Grambling State on Sept. 30 at 4:00 P.M. with another home game the following week versus Fort Valley State on Oct. 7 at 4:00 P.M.

The final home game will be on Oct. 21 at 2:00 P.M. versus Albany State for Homecoming and Senior Day.



The complete schedule is listed below and can also be found HERE.

9/2/2017 6:00 PM Edward Waters
9/9/2017 6:00 PM Central State University
9/16/2017 TBA @ Tuskegee University
9/23/2017 TBA @ Lane College
9/30/2017 4:00 PM Grambling State University
10/7/2017 4:00 PM Fort Valley State University
10/14/2017 TBA @ Benedict College
10/21/2017 2:00 PM Albany State University (Homecoming)
10/26/2017 6:00 PM @ Miles College (THURS. NIGHT)
11/4/2017 TBA @ Morehouse College

CLARK ATLANTA UNIVERSITY SPORTS INFORMATION

Albany State University names new head football coach

ALBANY, Georgia – The Albany State University director of athletics has selected a new head coach for the university's Golden Rams Football Program. Gabe Giardina, offensive coordinator and offensive line coach at Charleston Southern University, begins his head coaching duties at ASU April 24, 2017.

Giardina, selected from a pool of more than 100 applicants following a national search, has more than eight years of experience in football leadership roles at the collegiate level.

Both ASU President Art Dunning and Director of Athletics Sherie Gordon said the university's focus on student success played a major role in the selection of the coach and thus they greatly valued the input of student-athletes in the selection process.



"We wanted a strong leader with a plan and genuine passion about the social and academic development of our young men," Gordon said. "We wanted someone committed to recruiting in the state and in bordering states. We wanted someone who could connect with our student-athletes and engage positively with the university and the Albany community. We wanted a winner. We have found that person in Gabe Giardina."

"I met with our director of athletics after four finalists came to campus for a series of interviews. Upon completion of that process, I accepted her recommendation for this appointment," Dunning said. "Having a head football coach who is committed to building character, promoting academics as a priority and working to ensure that our players graduate into meaningful careers aligns directly with our goal for student success. I am pleased to welcome Coach Giardina and his family to Albany State University. I look forward to working with him to develop and sustain a winning football program on and off the field of play."

"Wimberly and I could not feel more blessed and excited to join the Albany State family. We are glad to make our home at a place with such a rich history and tradition," Giardina said. "From the moment this process started we could sense and feel the passion and commitment that both Dr. Dunning and Sherie Gordon have for the development of the student athlete as a whole person. We are going to win with culture, character and integrity. We want to be Albany's team!"

Giardina continued, "We are going to be a bright light in this community that alums and community members will be proud of by the way our young men compete on the field and by the way they conduct themselves off the field. It is our goal that all our players have the type of experience that truly transforms their lives and puts them on a path to do the same for others, all while bringing home championships to southwest Georgia."

During his recent tenure at Charleston Southern University, led by a multiple option offense, CSU's football team amassed 36 wins in four seasons, the most winning four years in that program's history. The team won two Big South Conference championships in 2015 and 2016, and made two NCAA playoff appearances. In 2014 and 2016, the offense averaged more than 400 yards per game. Charleston Southern ranked 14th in the NCAA Division I FCS Coaches Poll at the conclusion of the 2016 season.

Giardina also has three years of experience as an assistant head coach and special teams and running back coordinator at CSU. He served as an offensive coach for wide receivers at Delta State University in 2012.

Building character and scholarship in football players is just as important to Giardina as building a winning team on the football field. Under his tutelage, five CSU players earned national and conference academic honors.

As a student and graduate assistant for the University of Alabama, Giardina worked for both Mike Shula and current Alabama Head Coach Nick Saban. He played for the Crimson Tide from 2000 to 2003. He appeared in nine games and earned Academic All-SEC honors in 2003.

Giardina and his wife Wimberly, a board certified music therapist, have three children, Frank Foster, DeAra and Whitt.



What others are saying about Gabe Giardina:

"Gabe did a great job for us at The University of Alabama, and we appreciate his contributions to our program. The characteristics that made him a good coach while he was here will be the same that make him a successful coach at Albany State and we wish him the best of luck."
Nick Saban, Head Football Coach, The University of Alabama

"Gabe Giardina is not only a talented and intelligent football coach, he is a wonderful leader, developer and molder of young men. There will be no shortage of energy, passion and maturity as he leads the Albany State football program. His development as a coach is a direct reflection of his core values of faith, integrity and the importance of family."
Mike Shula, Offensive Coordinator, Carolina Panthers

"Gabe has been in preparation for this opportunity for many years. He is a leader of men who gets the most out of his players. Gabe is demanding yet passionate in his relationship with his players. He has the utmost integrity and will communicate a clear vision for the football program. He and his beautiful wife Wimberly will be a valuable addition to the Ram family and the city of Albany. This is the beginning of something very special for Albany State football."
Jamey Chadwell, Offensive Coordinator, Coastal Carolina University

About Albany State University … Albany State University, in Southwest Georgia, has been a catalyst for change in the region from its inception as the Albany Bible and Manual Training Institute to its designation as a university. Founded in 1903 to educate African-American youth, the university continues to fulfill its historic mission while also serving the educational needs of an increasingly diverse student population. A progressive institution, Albany State University seeks to foster the growth and development of the region, state and nation through teaching, research, creative expression and public service. Through its collaborative efforts, the university responds to the needs of all of its constituents and offers educational programs and service to improve the quality of life in Southwest Georgia. For more information see http://www.asurams.edu. Follow the university on  Twitter at @AlbanyStateUniv and on Facebook at Albany State University Official Page.

ALBANY STATE UNIVERSITY GOLDEN RAMS SPORTS INFORMATION

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Records Fall, Edward Waters Tigers Dominate at 2017 GCAC Track and Field Championship

New Orleans – With expectations high of each school, competitive energy was through the roof at the 2017 Gulf Coast Athletic Conference Track and Field Championship, sponsored by Triple B's Cajun Corner and LCMC Health.

Several meet records fell at the annual track and field competition, many at the hands of the Edward Waters (Fla.) College Tigers. Thrower Greg Bradshaw took down the meet record of 37.91 meters in the men's hammer with a throw of 41.94 meters to start the Tigers off with a win to begin the day. Coming in to the championship, hurdler Carl Elliott, III was ranked No. 8 in the nation, but rose to No. 2 with a 14.24 second performance to win the top spot in the 110-meter hurdles.

The Southern University at New Orleans (SUNO) Knights again proved their dominance in the sprints. Shadae Gylton took town fellow Lady Knight Orenthia Bennett's 2015 54.94 400-meter record in 2015 with a time of 54.17. The Lady Knights 3200-meter relay team of Shantae Green,

Kimona Smikle, also broke the meet record held by the 2012 Lady Knights relay team. Shadae Hilton took down fellow Lady Knight Orenthia Bennett's 2015 400-meter dash record with a time of 54.17. The Lady Knights' 3200-meter relay team beat the Conference record by a second, coming in at 9:54. Sprinter Jahnoy Thompson took first in the men's 100-meter, 200-meter and 400-meter dashes.
Conference records were also broken in the field events. Dillard University's Quamel Sessoms destroyed the previous meet record of 7.09 meters in the long jump with a final distance of 7.67 meters. Ellexsie Haughton, representing Edward Waters College, brought down the women's shot putt record of 12.21 meters with a final mark of 12.36 meters.

Three teams saw their campaigns for national glory kept alive. All three men's 400-meter relay teams from Edward Waters (Reginald Wright, Dontae LeCorn, Heiden Cummings and Wayne Richardson), SUNO (Chadwayne Vidale, Danielle Richards, Brian Smith and Jahnoy Thompson) and Dillard University (Quamel Sessoms, Larry Trimble, Tyrone Barrow and Artis McCoy) hit National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Outdoor Nationals qualifying times in the event. Individually, Edward Waters' Hieden Cummings hit an NAIA-B qualifying time of 21.56 in the men's 200-meter dash. Dillard's Kahlia Columbis qualified for NAIA Outdoor Nationals in the women's 400-meter dash with a time of 56.35 in her third place finish.

The Edward Waters Lady Tigers and Xavier Gold Rush battled for the women's championship throughout the day, until the strength of the Gold Rush distance corps pulled away in the women's 5000m. The top 4 runners in the event were Taylor Price, Dionysia Love, Brianna Pace and Maliya Vaughn, respectively, earning the Gold Rush 26 points in the event to Edward Waters' 3, and bringing their totals to 183 and 177 points as the day wound to a close.

On the men's side, strong performances by the Tigers placed them solidly in first place early, and they simply never let up. Edward Waters nearly doubled the total points earned by their nearest competitors, the scrappy Dillard University Bleu Devils. In the end, Edward Waters finished with 303 points to Dillard's 149.

Full meet results are available at RedStixtiming.com.

GULF COAST ATHLETIC CONFERENCE MEDIA RELATIONS

Langston Picked 2nd in CSFL Spring Coaches Poll


LANGSTON, Oklahoma -- Arizona Christian University was voted as the league's favorite in the 2017 Central States Football League (CSFL) Spring Coaches Poll. The Firestorm won its second consecutive conference championship last season and posted a perfect 6-0 record in CSFL play along with a 7-3 overall record. ACU received 63 points in the poll and took seven of the nine first place votes. The poll is comprised strictly of the league's head coaches vote.

Langston University was ranked second and finished six points behind ACU. The Lions received 57 total points and received a first place vote. Wayland Baptist University (Tex.) also received a first place vote and finished third in the poll with 50 votes.

Southwestern Assemblies of God University (Tex.) sewed up fourth place with 39 points and Oklahoma Panhandle State University, who recently was granted membership into the NAIA, ranked fifth with 37 total points. Lyon College (Ark.) landed in the sixth spot with 30 points and Bacone College was ranked seventh with 23 votes. CSFL newcomer Texas Wesleyan University received 14 votes and was polled in eighth place, while Texas College rounded out the poll with 11 points.

During the 2017 season, nine teams will compete for the CSFL title, including four teams from Texas, three schools from Oklahoma and one University out of Arizona and Arkansas. The CSFL is comprised of Arizona Christian University, Bacone College, Langston University, Lyon College (Ark.), Oklahoma Panhandle State University, Southwestern Assemblies of God University (Tex.), Wayland Baptist University (Tex.), Texas College and Texas Wesleyan University.

2017 CSFL Preseason Poll
Rank School Points (1st Place Votes)
1 Arizona Christian University 63 (7)
2 Langston University 57 (1)
3 Wayland Baptist University (Tex.) 50 (1)
4 Southwestern Assemblies of God Univ. (Tex.) 39
5 Oklahoma Panhandle State University 37
6 Lyon College (Ark.) 30
7 Bacone College 23
8 Texas Wesleyan University 14
9 Texas College 11

CSFL MEDIA COMMUNICATIONS

Wiley Wildcats' Dynasty Continues With Fourth Straight RRAC Championship


TATUM, Texas – The Wiley College men's track field team exerted its dominance over the Red River Athletic Conference with its fourth consecutive title Saturday at Tatum Eagle Stadium.

The Wildcats scored 266 points which was far and above Our Lady of the Lake University's 94. They won 11 of 13 running events. Marbeq Edgar (JR/Choiseul, St. Lucia) and Laban Kandie (FR/Kenya) shared the High Point Athlete with 36 points. Edgar won the 800-meter run (1:54.04) and the 1,500-meter run (4:08.15). He was runner up to Kandie in the 3,000-meter (9:25.94) and 5,000-meter (16:32.01) runs. Kandie won the 3,000-meter run in 9:20.59 and the 5,000-meter run in 15:23.37.

Overall, Kandie won three races with his victory in the 10,000-meter run Friday. Kandie was third in the 1,500-meter run (4:14.43).

Oraine Palmer (SO/Kingston, Jamaica) won the 100 and 200-meter dashes in 10.42 and 21:28. He was a member of the RRAC Champion 4 x 100-meter relay team with Jesse Berkley (JR/Siparia, Trinidad), Quinn-Lee Ralph (SR/Trinidad &Tobago) and Machael Mark (SR/Princess Town, Trinidad). Rajay Hamilton (JR/Jamaica) won the 400-meter dash in 47.80. Jose Garcia (FR/La Joya, Texas), Roger Ali (SR/Enterprise, Trinidad ), Hamilton and Kimorie Shearman (FR/St. Vincent) narrowly won the 4 x 400-meter relay at 3:15.94.

Wiley College had RRAC All-Conference athletes in almost every event Saturday. Ralph was runner up in the 100-meter (10.50), 200-meter (21.38) and 400-meter dashes (48.10). His time in the 400-meter dash surpassed the NAIA 'A' Qualifying standard. Mark finished third in the 100-meter dash (10.74). Hamilton finished second in the 1,500-meter run (4:13.90) and was third in the 200-meter dash (21.96) and 800-meter run (2:00.38). Shevan Parks (FR/Jamaica) finished second in the 800-meter run (2:00.35) and third in the 5,000-meter run (16:33.97). Shearman finished third in the 400-meter dash (48.96). Kendell Perouza (SR/Barataria, Trinidad) finished third in the 400-meter hurdles (55.54).

RESULTS

WILEY COLLEGE WILDCATS SPORTS INFORMATION

Former Maryland Terp Juan Dixon to be next men's basketball coach at Coppin State

BALTIMORE, Maryland -- Juan Dixon, who left Baltimore nearly 20 years ago for College Park and went on to become one of the biggest stars in the history of the Maryland men’s basketball program, is finally coming home.

Dixon, 38, will be the next men’s basketball coach at Coppin State in West Baltimore. Sources familiar with the situation said Saturday that he has accepted the job and will be introduced in the coming week.



In a text to The Baltimore Sun on Saturday, a Coppin State athletic department spokesman said, “Coppin State will be making a statement next week regarding the next coach of the men’s basketball team. Date and time to be determined.”

It marks the first time Dixon, who was the all-time leading scorer for the Terps and the Final Four's Most Outstanding Player in leading Maryland to its only national championship in 2002, will run a Division I men’s program.

After a seven-year NBA career that began as a Washington Wizards first-round draft pick and a brief stay in Europe, Dixon returned to the college game as a special assistant to Maryland coach Mark Turgeon in 2013.

CONTINUE READING

Can Juan Dixon turn Coppin State into a mid-major contender?

BALTIMORE, Maryland -- Juan Dixon is a historically important college basketball player. In an era of the sport when it wasn’t yet as easily accessible as it is today, he transcended the game. Time has gone by, however. The world is different. Gone is the player, and in its place is a Division I basketball coach.

That’s right. Juan Dixon is going to once again attempt to create greatness. This time, it will be as the head coach of Coppin State.

It is hard to put into words as to how important Dixon was to Maryland. Maybe it is partially this author romanticizing him over the years to the point it no longer matches any facts, but Dixon was to the Maryland Terrapins to what most marquee players are to blue-blood programs.



With Gary Williams’ face forever implanted on one cheek, Dixon was the other half of the face of Maryland hoops.

A thorough history lesson is not needed when discussing him in terms of his lasting impression. We can point to his prolific scoring (because it was prolific) as proof of his impact, or Maryland’s rise to national prominence during his tenure with the program to help better understand the impression he left, but his long lasting legacy is that he — along with help, obviously — aided in making Maryland, well, Maryland (at least for my generation).

Is some of that hyperbolic? No. Maybe. Probably.

CONTINUE READING

SAU Men Breeze To 20th Consecutive CIAA Track and Field Title; SAU Women Place Third

Shakinah Brooks And Anthony Soriano Win CIAA MVP Awards

BOWIE, Maryland -- On Saturday, the Saint Augustine's University men won its 20th consecutive title and the Saint Augustine's University women finished third in the CIAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships on the Bowie State University campus.

The Falcons, led by CIAA Men's Field MVP Anthony Soriano (Fr./Riverside, CA), scored 174.5 points to cruise past Virginia Union (126.5) and Virginia State (105) in the men's events. Johnson C. Smith was fourth (100) followed by Bowie State (61), Lincoln (Pa.) (50) and Livingstone (24).

The Lady Falcons scored 131 points to finish third in the women's standings. Winston-Salem State nipped Johnson C. Smith 145-144 after scoring nine points in the final event - the discus throw. The Golden Bulls, who were the defending champions, led 144-136 after winning the 4x400 relay.

Virginia State was fourth (48), Livingstone placed fifth (46) and Bowie State finished sixth (43.5). Shaw placed seventh (31) followed by Lincoln (Pa.) (19.5) and Virginia Union (13).

Soriano scored 26 points for the Falcons by placing second in the high jump and the javelin throw, third in the triple jump and fifth in the long jump. Shakinah Brooks (Sr./Raleigh, NC) was named CIAA Women's Field MVP after scoring 22 points for the Lady Falcons. She was victorious in the long jump and placed second in the triple jump for 18 points in addition to finishing sixth in the 100 dash and eighth in the 200 dash.

Brooks was one of several championship winners for the Falcons and Lady Falcons. Jumonne Exeter (Jr./St. Vincent) and Shaquille Dill (So./Pembroke, Bermuda) both won two events with Exeter taking the long jump and triple jump and Dill earning the 800 and 1500 runs. Shawn Rowe (Sr./West Palm Beach, FL) was victorious in the 400 hurdles and Tia-Adana Belle (Sr./St. George, Barbados) was the winner in the women's 400 hurdles.

SAINT AUGUSTINE'S UNIVERSITY SPORTS INFORMATION

WSSU women win CIAA track title

BOWIE, Maryland -- Winston-Salem State scored 145 points to beat Johnson C. Smith by one to win the CIAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships held over the last two days at Bowie State.

The Rams finished with 145 points and the Golden Bulls were next with 144. St. Aug’s was third with 131 points and Virginia State was fourth with 48 points.

St. Aug’s won the men’s title with 174.5 points with Virginia Union second with 126.5 points.

Taska Johnson of the Rams was second in the 1,500 and 800 meter runs. Teammate Ty-Leah Hampton won the 100 meters and the 200 meters. Kayla Foy was second in the 100 meters and Dom Kiplagat of the Rams won the 3,000 meters.

CONTINUE READING

Arrests cast shadow over Alcorn spring game

LORMAN, Mississippi -- Saturday’s Purple and Gold Spring Game never had a chance to be Alcorn’s finest hour, because it didn’t last that long.

The arrest of 18 players this week in connection with a brawl that broke out on April 10 cast a shadow over the annual spring scrimmage, which ended after four offensive possessions about halfway through the second quarter.

Coach Fred McNair addressed the media for the first time since the arrests, and said he planned to let the process play out before he made any decisions about potential penalties for the players involved.

“Anybody who has been a football player or a student on campus knows things like that happen,” ASU coach Fred McNair said. “It’s no problem. We’re going to handle that. The University did a great job putting out a statement on it. So we’re just going to take it and wait until they get done with their process.”

Saturday’s scrimmage had a weird feeling from the get-go, when it started in earnest about 45 minutes later than the scheduled 2 p.m. kickoff.

CONTINUE READING

Saturday, April 22, 2017

S.C. State Wins 2017 MEAC Women's Tennis Championship


NORFOLK, Virginia — South Carolina State, the top seed out of the Southern Division, won its second straight Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) women's tennis championship with a 4-3 win over Hampton in the championship match Saturday morning at the Folkes-Stevens Tennis Center on the campus of Old Dominion University.

The Lady Bulldogs have won 12 of the last 13 titles.

Hampton, the No. 1 seed out of the Northern Division, grabbed early control by seizing the doubles point. Mariam Mitaishvili and Kristina Titova came away with a 6-1 victory, while Mikaela Pierce and Cherise Slocombe emerged victorious 6-2 to give the Lady Pirates the opening point.

With the match tied at 3-3, Andjela Vasic took Slocombe to three sets before emerging with the 5-7, 6-4, 6-2 win to clinch the match.

All told, South Carolina State picked up singles wins in the Nos. 3, 4, 5 and 6 positions – all while Titova and Mitaishvili won the Nos. 1 and 2 singles matches in straight sets. Titova defeated Marketa Marcanikova 6-2, 6-2, while Mitaishvili won her match 6-2, 6-2.

Marcanikova was named the tournament's Outstanding Performer, while head coach Hardeep Judge was named the Outstanding Coach.

The Lady Bulldogs earn the MEAC's automatic bid to the NCAA Div. I Women's Tennis Championships; the selection show will be on Tuesday, May 2 at 5:30 p.m. on NCAA.com.

Outstanding Performer: Marketa Marcanikova, South Carolina State
Outstanding Coach: Hardeep Judge, South Carolina State

All-Tournament Team
#1 Doubles: Mariam Mitaishvili/Kristina Titova, Hampton
#2 Doubles: Mikaela Pierce/Cherise Slocombe, Hampton
#3 Doubles: Oleksandra Filippova/Smaranda Petreanu, South Carolina State

#1 Singles: Kristina Titova, Hampton
#2 Singles: Mariam Mitaishvili, Hampton
#3 Singles: Andjela Vasic, South Carolina State
#4 Singles: Marketa Marcanikova, South Carolina State
#5 Singles: Claudia Roca, South Carolina State
#6 Singles: Smaranda Petreanu, South Carolina State

SOUTH CAROLINA STATE UNIVERSITY SPORTS INFORMATION

FAMU Rattler Men Capture 2017 MEAC Tennis Championship


NORFOLK, Virginia  — Florida A&M ended South Carolina State’s string of dominance on Saturday at the Folkes-Stevens Tennis Center on the campus of Old Dominion University, defeating the Bulldogs 4-2 in the championship match of the 2017 Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) Men’s Tennis Championship.

The Rattlers won their first MEAC title in men’s tennis since 2000.

The Bulldogs captured the doubles point to begin the match, but the Rattlers bounced back in a big way during singles play. Of the five singles matches that ran to completion, Florida A&M won four of them; the Bulldogs’ lone singles win came in the No. 6 slot, where Aleksander Stupar came away with a 6-1, 6-4 victory.

Karlyn Small and Walner Espinoza picked up straight-set victories for the Rattlers; Small defeated Jakub Vitek 6-3, 6-4 in the No. 3 slot, while Espinoza won in the No. 4 position 6-2, 6-4 over Soufiane Mouline.

The clincher came in the No. 5 spot, where Frederico Nani overcame a 4-3 deficit in the final set, scoring the last three points to secure a 0-6, 6-2, 6-4 victory over Stanislav Baco.

Carlos Waitman, in No. 2, also had a three-set win – 2-6, 6-2, 6-0 over Vladyslav Yanchenko.

Espinoza was named the tournament’s Outstanding Performer, while head coach Rochelle Goldthreate was named the Outstanding Coach.

The Rattlers earn the MEAC’s automatic bid to the NCAA Div. I Men’s Tennis Championships; the selection show will be on Tuesday, May 2 at 5 p.m. on NCAA.com.

TOURNAMENT HONORS
Outstanding Performer: Walner Espinoza, Florida A&M
Outstanding Coach: Rochelle Goldthreate, Florida A&M

All-Tournament Team
#1 Doubles: Martin Figura/Jakub Vitek, South Carolina State
#2 Doubles: Vladyslav Yanchenko/Stanislav Baco, South Carolina State
#3 Doubles: Frederico Nani/Jalen Evans, Florida A&M
#1 Singles: Courage Okungbowa, Florida A&M
#2 Singles: Arjun Ramakrishnan, Morgan State
#3 Singles: Karlyn Small, Florida A&M
#4 Singles: Walner Espinoza, Florida A&M
#5 Singles: Frederico Nani, Florida A&M
#6 Singles: Aleksander Stupar, South Carolina State

FLORIDA A&M 4, SC State Bulldogs 2
Apr 22, 2017 at Norfolk, Va.

MEAC MEN'S CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH RESULTS
Singles competition

1. FIGURA,Martin (SCSUM) vs. OKUNGBOWA,Courage (FAMUM) 4-6, 6-3, 2-4, unfinished

2. WAITMAN,Carlos Agust (FAMUM) def. YANCHENKO,Vladyslav (SCSUM) 2-6, 6-2, 6-0

3. SMALL,Karlyn (FAMUM) def. VITEK,Jakub (SCSUM) 6-3, 6-4

4. ESPINOZA,Walner (FAMUM) def. MOULINE,Soufiane (SCSUM) 6-2, 6-4

5. NANI,Frederico (FAMUM) def. BACO,Stanislav (SCSUM) 0-6, 6-2, 6-4

6. STUPAR,Aleksander (SCSUM) def. SKOROMNYY,Illya (FAMUM) 6-1, 6-4

Doubles competition

1. FIGURA,Martin/VITEK,Jakub (SCSUM) def. ESPINOZA,Walner/WAITMAN,Carlos Agust (FAMUM) 6-3

2. YANCHENKO,Vladyslav/BACO,Stanislav (SCSUM) def. OKUNGBOWA,Courage/SMALL,Karlyn (FAMUM) 7-5

3. MOULINE,Soufiane/DIAZ,Edgar (SCSUM) vs. NANI,Frederico/EVANS,Jalen (FAMUM) 5-6, unfinished

FLORIDA A&M UNIVERSITY SPORTS INFORMATION

FAMU Interim Head Basketball Coach resigns

TALLAHASSEE, Florida -- FAMU Interim Head Basketball Coach Lamont Franklin has resigned and left the FAMU program. Franklin was the last member of Byron Samuels’ coaching staff at FAMU.

Franklin was given the interim title after the university informed Samuels he would not be brought back after the Rattlers season ended. Currently only Gerald Gillion who is not an employee with FAMU is on the Rattlers coaching staff. Gillion is on a temporary contract with the school to help with recruiting.

FAMU is just one of four division one schools in the country with out a head coach.

CONTINUE READING

Cheyney Wolves To Play at Alabama State in Turkey Day Classic

CHEYNEY, Pennsylvania -- Cheyney University football will head to Montgomery, Alabama to face Alabama State University on Thanksgiving Day in the 94th Annual Turkey Day Classic on Thursday, November 23, 2017 at ASU Stadium on the Alabama State campus.

The contest scheduled to begin at 3:00 p.m., (2:00 p.m. in Alabama), will mark the first meeting between two of the nation's oldest Historically Black College and Universities (HBCU). Cheyney University celebrating its 180th Anniversary as the nation's First HBCU founded in 1837 and Alabama State, who are commemorating their 150th year anniversary, founded in 1867.

The Turkey Day Classic features a week of activities and acts as the homecoming game for Division I Alabama State out of the Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC) eastern division. The Hornets have hosted the Turkey Day Classic every year since 1924.

The Turkey Day Classic is the longest running HBCU Classic in the nation, and has featured just seven different opponents including Tuskegee (1924-'70, '72-'85, '88-'90, and '93-2012), Mississippi Valley State ('71), Clark Atlanta ('86), Johnson C. Smith ('87 and '91), Fayetteville State ('92), Stillman (2013-14) and Miles (2015-16).

Cheyney Head Coach Chris Roulhac, Albany State '70, competed against Alabama State as a member of the Albany State football teams. "I look forward to going back to Alabama State and being a part of this historic event." Roulhac sees this as a great opportunity to grow the Cheyney brand and understands the significance of the contest. "It's an honor to travel to Alabama for the 94th Annual Turkey Day Classic, and to play in their new stadium, in our 180th year as they celebrate their 150th."

The Wolves are in the midst of spring practice and have an open practice scheduled for tomorrow Saturday, April 22, inside O'Shields-Stevenson Stadium at 1:00 p.m. as part of the Community Day festivities at Cheyney University.

The Annual Blue-White Scrimmage to close out the spring will be held at 12:00 p.m. on Saturday, April 29 inside O'Shields-Stevenson Stadium.

To see the official Turkey Day Classic release from Alabama State University, click HERE.

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CHEYNEY UNIVERSITY MEDIA COMMUNICATIONS

Albany State Rams football set to showcase talent in spring scrimmage

ALBANY, Georgia — The Albany State football program believes they have the talent in place to withstand the personnel changes that may come.

Interim head coach Anthony Kelly said he expects a number of players on both sides of the ball to give Rams’ fans a taste of what’s to come in the annual Blue-Gold Spring Scrimmage Saturday at 2 p.m. at the Albany State University Coliseum.

Under center will be former Monroe High School standout Charles Stafford and Billy Cobb, who is returning this season from injury. Both players have overcome obstacles, but it is Stafford who is expected to get the nod when the season officially begins. Kelly said he’s already seeing what made him such an impressive signee out of high school.

“We are now beginning to see the kid we recruited from Monroe High School a few years ago,” he said. “You see the arm strength, you see the poise as he stands in the pocket and gets rid of the ball. You see the leadership in terms of he’s leading the offense. He’s a little bit more vocal. He’s showing the confidence that we have expected from him, that you would want from a quarterback. He’s just matured.”

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Tuskegee second in Division II football attendance

TUSKEGEE, Alabama -- For the 14th consecutive year, the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SIAC) led all NCAA Division II conferences in football attendance.

In Division II, there was a record-breaking attendance of over 3.2 million across the 930 games with an increased average of 3,459 per game.

Tuskegee was second among Division II teams with an average attendance of 10,130. Miles (9,624), Fort Valley State (8,850), Morehouse (8,370) and Albany State (8,057) rounded out the top 10.

In 2016, the SIAC recorded an attendance of 376,763 fans throughout 49 games. The average attendance at SIAC games last season was 7,689.



The SIAC has led all NCAA Division II conferences in football attendance for 25 of the last 27 seasons, dating back to the 1990 season. Since 1990, the SIAC has led NCAA Division II football attendance 25 times including totaling an attendance of at least 300,000 on 19 occasions.

“The support shown to SIAC student-athletes and member institutions underscore the unique and special relationships which SIAC schools share with their students, alumni and fans,” said SIAC Commissioner Greg Moore.

“We take great pride in these relationships as well as various game day traditions that bring families together and engage our respective college and university communities in such a positive manner.”

Among the most well attended games last season were the Chicago Football Classic (34,003) between Clark Atlanta and Central State, Kentucky State at Tuskegee (25,691), the Morehouse-Tuskegee Classic (23,612), Fort Valley State at Morehouse (22,476), and the Circle City Classic (21,024) featuring Central State and Kentucky State.

COURTESY TUSKEGEE UNIVERSITY NEWS

Hampton lacrosse coach, players to hold clinic in Baltimore on Saturday

BALTIMORE, Maryland -- When Lloyd Carter steps on the field Saturday morning at Carroll Park, he will have flashbacks of many other days spent there.

As a former head coach at Northwestern High in the late 1990s, he and City coach Anthony Ryan spent a lot of time working with young African-Americans to develop and spread the game of lacrosse.

Nothing has changed much through the years.

Carter, 58, is returning to the city as head coach of Hampton University, the first team at a historically black college or university to play at the Division I level.

Carter and his Hampton players, in conjunction with Charm City Youth lacrosse, will hold a clinic to teach skills, run scrimmages and then speak to the children about the importance of an education.

"We're going to board the bus around 5 or 5:30 and get there to work," Carter said on Thursday. "We tried to work something out last year, but got started too late. But this year, we worked on a time and this is a good way to help others."

"I've done this before with Blax Lax [a club team he formed with Ryan in 2002]and this is my way of reaching back into the community," said Carter, who played lacrosse at Morgan State University in 1977 until the school dropped the program in 1981. "It's a win-win situation for everybody."

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End to N.C. Central’s spring practice has championship feel



DURHAM, North Carolina – The North Carolina Central football program will look to the 2017 season Saturday afternoon before taking a look back at its 2016 success in the evening.

The Eagles will first conclude spring practice with their annual “Maroon vs. Gray” intrasquad game at O’Kelly-Riddick Stadium. Then members of last year’s team will be honored and presented with MEAC championship rings at a ceremony inside McDougald-McLendon Arena.

Coach Jerry Mack guided the Eagles to a 9-3 overall record and an 8-0 mark in the MEAC. They went on to play in the Air Force Reserve Celebration Bowl, losing to SWAC champion Grambling State 10-9.

Mack said his team’s goal this spring has been to develop younger players for new roles and to improve the fundamentals of the veterans.

The Eagles figure to be especially strong on defense, where ,,,

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Friday, April 21, 2017

Richard selected NAIA National Player of the Week

NEW ORLEANS — Xavier University of Louisiana's Antoine Richard was named NAIA National Player of the Week in men's tennis Wednesday — his third honor in two days.

Richard, a freshman from Laval, Quebec, and a graduate of Le Tremplin School, was named Tuesday as Gulf Coast Athletic Conference Player of the Week. Wednesday at XULA's Athletic Honors Night, Richard received the Male Athlete of the Year award.

Richard earned the NAIA award after winning 5-of-6 decisions April 10-16, including a 6-4, 3-6, 7-6 (7-5) victory against West Florida's Alex Peyrot, the third-ranked singles player in NCAA Division II. Richard became the first NAIA singles player of 2017 to beat an NCAA Division II opponent with a top-10 national ranking, and he gave Peyrot his only home singles loss of 2017 (nine decisions).

Another notable effort was in the Gold Rush's 7-2 home victory against William Carey, the NAIA's sixth-ranked team. Richard won in doubles and singles, including a 6-1, 6-0 triumph against NAIA No. 14 Vladyslav Ladygin.

Richard is the ninth XULA athlete to receive NAIA National Player of the Week, the fourth in men's tennis and the first in that sport since Corey Huggins in 2012. Richard's GCAC award is his third of the season.

The Gold Rush, 10-5 and ranked second in the NAIA, will travel to the University of New Orleans for the regular-season finale at 2 p.m. Monday.

XULA's NAIA National Players of the Week
Season Sport Name Year Date
2009-10 Women's Basketball Brittany Powell Senior Jan. 18-24, 2010
2010-11 Men's Tennis Zach Taylor Junior April 25-May 1, 2011
2011-12 Men's Tennis Loic Didavi Junior April 2-8, 2012
2011-12 Men's Tennis Corey Huggins Junior April 9-15, 2012
2011-12 Women's Tennis Kourtney Howell Sophomore April 23-29, 2012
2012-13 Women's Tennis Olivia West Sophomore March 25-31, 2013
2014-15 Women's Tennis Caroline Vernet Freshman March 30-April 5, 2015
2015-16 Women's Basketball Trana Hopkins Senior Feb. 22-28, 2016
2016-17 Men's Tennis Antoine Richard Freshman April 10-16, 2017

Ed Cassiere, Sports Information Director
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Nuggets sign 2 more, including state-champ sprinter


\NEW ORLEANS — Xavier University of Louisiana announced Friday the signing of Ariel Bell of White Castle, La., and White Castle High School and Lauryn Taylor of Sairburn, Ga., and Booker T. Washington High School to athletic scholarships. Both will compete in volleyball; Bell also will be a sprinter in women's track.

Bell is a three-time LHSAA Class 1A outdoor state champion in the 100-meter dash. In 2016 she tied the 1A meet record of 11.91 seconds in that event. In volleyball she was first-team all-district as a senior. Bell is a 5-foot-7 outside hitter.

Taylor, a 5-9 right-side/outside hitter, helped Booker T. Washington reach the quarterfinals of the GHSA Class AA state playoffs her senior year. Academically she ranked among BTW's top five percent each of her four years, and she has compiled 400 hours of community service.

Bell — XULA's fourth volleyball signee for next season — will major in business, and Taylor will major in chemistry/pre-pharmacy.

XULA is a member of the NAIA and the Gulf Coast Athletic Conference.

2017-18 XULA Volleyball Signees
Name Pos. Ht. Yr.* Hometown High School
Ariel Bell # OH 5-7 Fr. White Castle, La. White Castle
Eva Le Guillou S 5-9 Fr. Velizy-Villacoublay, France Emmanuel Mounier
Jaida Dowd OH 5-8 Fr. Aurora, Ill. Metea Valley
Lauryn Taylor RS/OH 5-9 Fr. Sairburn, Ga. Booker T. Washington

* XULA athletic classification in 2017-18
# also will compete in track and field

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Still No. 1: The SWAC tops all FCS schools in attendance



BIRMINGHAM, Alabama -- The Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC) is still number one in attendance for football games.

The SWAC remained the top-attended conference in the NCAA Div.-I Football Championship Series (FCS) for the 2016 season with a total reaching 678,355.

As a league, the SWAC averaged 14,132 in attendance in its 48 home football games, an increase in average of 1,309 per contest.

The Missouri Valley Conference were next in attendance as it drew an average of 11,095 in its 61 home games. The SWAC outnumbered the MVC by over 1,500 in total attendance despite playing in 13 fewer contests.

The Big Sky ranked third with an average of 9,719.

The SWAC has been the FCS leader in attendance in 38 of the previous 39 years and its most highly attended games did not factor into the figures. The Magic City Classic between Alabama A&M and Alabama State drew over 70,000 fans at Legion Field in Birmingham, Ala., the Bayou Classic drew 67,845 at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, La., and the State Fair Classic between Grambling State and Prairie View A&M drew 53,182 at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas, TX.

Five schools from the SWAC ranked in the top 20 with Jackson State ranking fourth in attendance among FCS schools (19,660) followed by Grambling State (16,335) in 10th, Alcorn State (14,343) in 13th, Southern (13,678) in 16th and Prairie View A&M (12,194) in 18th.

The SWAC also saw the greatest increase in average attendance (1,309) among all Division I schools including FBS conferences.

The SWAC Championship between Alcorn State and Grambling State drew 24,917 to NRG Stadium in Houston, TX.



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Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Grambling State AD hires Director of Compliance

Tiffani-Dawn Sykes
Assistant Athletics Director for Compliance
GRAMBLING, Louisiana -- Grambling State University Athletics Director Paul Bryant added another important piece to his staff in his on-going effort to improve the GSU athletics program.

Bryant has hired Gramblinite Tiffani-Dawn Sykes as the assistant athletics director for compliance, effective Monday (April 10).

"I am so happy to have Ms. Sykes as a part of the University's team," said Bryant. "Her knowledge and experience in college athletics, particularly in compliance, will allow us to operate within the guidelines of the conference and NCAA. She will be committed to ensuring that the university and athletics staff are compliant in our approach to educating our student-athletes. We are very fortunate to have her at the helm of our compliance department."

"I am very excited to return to Grambling State University, a place that is very special to me," said Sykes. "As an alumna of GSU, I know how much our athletic program means to the Grambling community. I look forward to serving Grambling State University, its student-athletes, coaches and athletics staff for many years."
Sykes returns to her alma mater after four years as the NCAA Eligibility Specialist for the Norfolk State University athletics department, where she was responsible for evaluating degree audits and other academic records in an effort to ensure conformity with NCAA initial, transfer and continuing eligibility regulations. She also assisted with Academic Performance Program (APP), Graduation Success Rate (GSR) and other NCAA academic reports.

Prior to NSU, Sykes spent three years as the director of NCAA compliance at Chowan University from 2010-13. There, she was in charge of certifying all student-athletes for NCAA eligibility while coordinating the NLI and scholarship processes for the athletics department. Additionally, she was a member of the department's senior staff and the sport supervisor for bowling.

Sykes also has extensive sports information experience, having previously served as the sports information director at St. Paul's College (2002-06) and Virginia Union (2006-09). In 2009, Sykes served as the interim assistant sports information director at GSU and as the sport management specialist at the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) in 2010.

Sykes graduated cum laude with a bachelors of science degree from Virginia State in 2001, where she lettered in volleyball and track and field. She currently serves as the National Vice President of the VSU Alumni Association.

The Portsmouth, Va. native earned her masters from Grambling State in 2010, where she graduated summa cum laude. Sykes completed the NCAA Leadership Institute for Ethnic Minority Females in 2007 and is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., the National Association of College Directors of Athletics (NACDA) and the Women Leaders in College Sports, formerly NACWAA.

GRAMBLING STATE UNIVERSITY SPORTS INFORMATION

JOURNEY TO THE NFL: Former DSU standout Gabe Sherrod prepares to turn pro

PERRYVILLE, Maryland — Gabe Sherrod’s football career has been on an upward trajectory ever since he first stepped on the field to play Pop Warner football at Perryville Middle School.

It’s been a gridiron journey that included a trip to the 1A State High School Football Championship as Perryville’s senior quarterback in 2011, earning All-MEAC first-team honors as a defensive end at Delaware State University in 2015 and, most recently, strapping on a helmet as a fifth-year senior for Big Ten powerhouse Michigan State University.



Now, as he turns his attention to making the jump to the NFL, Sherrod has returned to the place where it all began: Cecil County.

“I’m going into unprecedented territory in that not a lot of people that I know, except for Larry Webster, made it [to the NFL] from this area, so I thought it was only right to come home and train around people I’m familiar with,” said Sherrod, referencing Elkton graduate Larry Webster, a defensive end drafted by the Detroit Lions in the fourth round of the 2014 NFL Draft. “This, after all, is where everything started and how I was able to branch out to Delaware State and Michigan State, so I just felt it was only right to come home. And spend time with family, as well. That time is invaluable. I don’t know where I’ll end up in the next couple of weeks, so spending time with my family and having them see my face, seeing their faces, it’s an all-around good thing to do at this point.”

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Texas Southern Lady Tigers Golf wins first SWAC Title in school history



ALEXANDRIA, Louisiana – The Texas Southern women's golf team claimed their first SWAC Women's Golf Championship in program history by shooting a 307-329-636 to wrap up play on Tuesday at the Links on the Bayou in Alexandria, La.

The Lady Tigers broke up a four-year title run by Alabama State, who had also taken the SWAC Women's Golf Championship in five in the previous six seasons.

Jackson State finished as runners up with a 349-338-687 followed by Prairie View A&M in third place (369-351-720) and Alcorn State in fourth (378-370-748).

Texas Southern's Amber Kuykendall shot even-under-par 71-73-144 to pace the Lady Tigers.

TSU teammate Jalyn Joseph was awarded the SWAC Women's Golf Freshman of the Year award after firing a 75-84-159.

Amber Kuykendall and Joseph were each named to the All-Conference First Team.

Texas Southern head coach Hank Stewart was named the SWAC Women's Golf Coach of the Year after guiding the Lady Tigers to their championship.

2017 SWAC Women's Golf All-Conference Team

First Team
Chanelle Avaricio, Alabama State
Amber Kuykendall, Texas Southern
Dismary Marquez, Alabama State
Makalia Brown, Jackson State
Jalyn Joseph, Texas Southern

Second Team
Saidah Bodden, Alabama State
Destani Burbank, Texas Southern
Tasita Garcia, Jackson State
Hillary Washington, Texas Southern
Keelin Floyd, Jackson State

TEXAS SOUTHERN UNIVERSITY SPORTS INFORMATION

Monday, April 17, 2017

ASU signee Ross brings scoring punch

MONTGOMERY, Alabama -- Jacoby Ross looks the part.

Watched a couple of YouTube videos of the Alabama State signee this weekend.

He has some handle, can shoot it from deep and get to the rim. Didn't see much mid-range game, but you can see why he averaged 23 points for American Basketball Institute.



Ross showed the ability to play off the ball a little bit and shake free for shots. Understand these are highlights, but the Alexandria, La., native looks like a talent who could help ASU right away.

"It's an honor to be able to go to college and to get my school paid for in the game that I like to play," said Ross in an interview with KALB-TV out of Alexandria. "They're like another home to me. They said they're going to take care of me and I was going to be the leader and that captain of the team. So I'm just going to take on that role and do my part."

The 5-foot, 10-inch point guard averaged 22.5 points, 4.5 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 2.9 steals while at Peabody Magnet High where he played for his grandfather, Charles Smith.

CONTINUE READING

Savannah State athletics move to NCAA Division II

SAVANNAH, Georgia -- Savannah State University (SSU) President Cheryl D. Dozier today announced the intent to classify all athletics programs from NCAA Division I to NCAA Division II, "pending approval by the NCAA. The announcement also signals the end of SSU’s membership in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) after the transition," the University reports today.

"This decision was made after months of discussion and deliberation in an effort to put SSU’s athletics programs in the best position fiscally, academically and athletically. This move allows SSU athletics to remain in competition and carry on their traditions," an SSU spokesperson says.

The administration "has maintained that fiscal responsibility for the betterment of students and the institution is priority. Senior administrators are in ongoing communication with the NCAA and the MEAC to create and coordinate a plan to have the most efficient transition," the University reports.

“While I am extremely proud of the progress our athletes and coaches have made at the Division I Level, it is not financially feasible for us to continue,” said Dozier. Additional details about the transition plan will be released in the coming months.

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Sunday, April 16, 2017

S.C. State football has competitive 20-17 spring game



ORANGEBURG, South Carolina -- For the most part, the play in South Carolina State’s spring football game on Saturday was just as good as the amazing weather fans and football recruits in the stands enjoyed.

While the defense stood strong most of the game, the offense showed signs of improvement through spring workouts and posted touchdown runs by two different quarterbacks, as the White team (offense) took a 20-17 win against the Garnet team (defense).

PHOTO GALLERY: S.C. State football spring game 2017

Even with the Bulldogs not playing a few returning starters on defense, there was one forced fumble and fumble recovery against the offense and one tipped pass that was intercepted.

All in all, the game on Willie E. Jeffries Field was a strong finish to the spring workout schedule for S.C. State and head coach Buddy Pough’s team.

“We feel like we got a lot done in developing some depth this spring,” Pough said. “We’re still working on ways to run the ball better and run it more often.

“All of our quarterbacks had their moments today and they had their boneheaded moments too. We’ve got the chance to throw the ball around a little bit, but that’s going to depend on our offensive line continuing to improve.”



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XULA Richard wins on road vs. NCAA Division II's #3 player


PENSACOLA, Florida — Xavier University of Louisiana men's tennis freshman Antoine Richard defeated one of the best players in NCAA Division II Saturday in a 6-4, 3-6, 7-6 (7-5) decision against West Florida senior Alex Peyrot.

Richard — a left-hander from Laval, Quebec, a graduate of Le Tremplin and the ITA's fourth-ranked NAIA singles player — won for the ninth time in 13 decisions this semester and stretched his win streak to six. Richard ended the 8-match win streak of Peyrot, who is third-ranked in NCAA D2.

"I just needed to stay focused throughout the match and keep fighting," said Richard, who won in three sets for the second time this week. "I felt good in the tiebreaker, felt fresh. I had been training well recently."

The victory gave Richard a split for the day with Peyrot, who teamed with Pedro Dumont for an 8-5 doubles victory against Richard and Moses Micheal.

West Florida won both dual matches against XULA, topping the Gold Rush 7-2 and the Gold Nuggets 9-0. West Florida's men (23-1) are ranked first in NCAA D2, and its women (20-6) are ranked sixth.

Karan Salwan scored the other XULA victory when his singles opponent, Warren Kuhn, retired because of an injury with Kuhn leading 6-3, 1-3. The Gold Rush (10-5), ranked second in the NAIA, lost to a top-10 D2 team for the second straight day. So did the Gold Nuggets (6-13), who are ranked ninth and have dropped six straight overall.

Emma Kranendonk, the only Gold Nugget to win a set, lost 3-6, 6-0, 6-4 to regionally ranked Paula Coyos.

The Gold Nuggets will play their home finale at 1 p.m. Saturday against NAIA No. 11 LSU-Alexandria. Dual matches Tuesday at the University of New Orleans were postponed for the Gold Rush and canceled for the Gold Nuggets. The Rush instead will visit UNO April 24 or 25, and the women's dual was dropped at the request of UNO coach Burzis Kanga.

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Rush, Nuggets fall to top-10 teams from Georgia


Results:  Men   •   Women

PENSACOLA, Florida — Moses Micheal was a double winner Friday for Xavier University of Louisiana, but Columbus State rallied to earn a 5-3 men's tennis dual-match decision that snapped the Gold Rush win streak at five.

In the women's dual, Columbus State beat XULA 5-0.

All four teams are top-10 nationally. XULA's men (10-4) are ranked second in the NAIA, and the women (6-12) are ninth. Columbus State's men (17-3) are ninth in NCAA Division II, and its women (18-2) are seventh.

Micheal and Antoine Richard rallied to beat KP Pannu and Maciej Kierkus 9-7 — the only XULA doubles victory of the day — and Micheal gave the Gold Rush a 3-2 lead against the Georgia team when he beat Zach Whaanga, regionally ranked in singles, 6-3, 6-3 on the second court.

But the Cougars then rattled off three straight singles victories, and Paul Sprengelmeijer clinched with a 7-6 (7-3), 6-4 decision against Karan Salwan at No. 3.

The other Gold Rush victory was on the fourth court, where Catalin Fifea cruised past Matei Avram 6-3, 6-2 and improved his singles win streak to nine. Fifea has not dropped a singles set in nearly two months.

"I was really impressed with Catalin Fifea and Moses Micheal in singles," XULA coach Alan Green said. "Fifea has been rock-solid all year, and Moses is getting better each day."

Micheal won in doubles and singles for the second consecutive day. Prior to Thursday, the freshman from Kaduna, Nigeria, had been a double winner in only 1-of-12 duals.

Friday was the first time in 34 duals that Salwan failed to win in doubles or singles. The only other time he was shut out was in the 2016 opener at Louisiana-Lafayette — his first dual match with the Gold Rush. Salwan and Tushar Mandlekar's 8-1 loss to Whaanga and Avram was the largest margin of defeat by a Gold Rush doubles team in a dual this season.

The Gold Nuggets dropped their fifth straight dual, and the Lady Cougars won their sixth in a row and 16th in their last 17. XULA's best efforts were at No. 1 doubles, where newly paired Charlene Goreau and Emma Kranendonk lost 8-5 to fifth-ranked Beatriz Leon and Beatriz Lopez, and at No. 6 singles, where Sha'Nel Bruins was tied at 5 in the first set with Saravinder Pannu (KP's older sister) when the dual was clinched and halted.

Goreau and Kranendonk trailed 2-0 and 5-3 before rallying to tie their match at 5.

XULA will play more NCAA D2 top-10 teams at 10 a.m. Saturday: West Florida's top-ranked men and No. 7 women. Venue will be the same as Friday — West Florida's Ralph "Skeeter" Carson Tennis Complex.

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Saturday, April 15, 2017

Coppin State Women's Basketball Signs Downs & Corbie For 2017-18 Season

BALTIMORE, Maryland -- Coppin State women's basketball head coach DeWayne Burroughs announced the signing of guards Camille Downs and Tsahai Corbie on Wednesday, April 12th. Downs and Corbie will join the Eagles women's basketball program for the 2017-18 season.

"With the signing of both Camille Downs and Tsahai Corbie along with Nadia Davidson, we are looking for immediate success and taking the program to another level in the upcoming 2017-18 season," Burroughs comments.

Camille Downs is a 5-7 guard from Stafford, VA who attended Colonial Forge High School. She led the Eagles to a 25-6 overall record as a senior in 2016-17 averaging 12.2 points per game along with 3.4 steals. Colonial Forge won the first women's basketball championship in school and county history with a 52-38 victory over the Oakton Cougars. Downs scored 21 points including all 14 of her team's first quarter points. She finished with nine rebounds, four steals, three assists and two blocks to go along with her game-high 21 points.

"Camille is very versatile on the court. She will be a great addition to our team since she can play the lead guard position all the way through to the power forward. Camille finds a way to score the basketball and you can see her love for the game every time she plays. I believe that she will come in and be an immediate impact."

Tsahai Corbie is a 5-7 guard from Brooklyn, NY who attended South Shore High School. Corbie was named the Girls PSAL MVP at the 2017 NYC Mayor's Cup and is ranked as a three-star recruit by ESPN. She won three PSAL Basketball Championships (2015, 2016, 2017), was named the 2017 PSAL MVP and earned the PSAL Basketball Champion Academic Achievement Award in 2015 for the highest GPA on the team. Corbie also garnered the Conrad McCrae AAU Tournament Student-Athlete Award in 2016, National Honor Society Inductee in April of 2015 and 2016, the Victory Collegiate Instagram Founders High Climbers Award in 2016, the Victory Collegiate Michael Jordan Student Athlete Academic Award in 2015 and also won the Rose Classic Super Jam Basketball Sportsmanship Award in 2015.

"Tsahai is a threat from long range and can shoot the three-pointer well. On the court she can play anywhere from the lead guard to a small forward. She is an all-around player that can score, rebound, assist and is always looking to make her teammates better. In addition she plays with a very high IQ for the game and loves to play the game and looks like she is having fun."

COPPIN STATE UNIVERSITY ATHLETICS MEDIA COMMUNICATIONS

Cal basketball has hired Coppin State's Keith Brown as Director of Basketball Operations

BERKELEY, California -- A California source has confirmed a report by Jeff Goodman of ESPN that head Bears basketball coach Wyking Jones has hired former Coppin State assistant Keith Brown as Director of Basketball Operations.

A special assistant to the head coach at Mount St. Mary's in Los Angeles during the 2015-16 season, who analyzed practices and games, Brown is a data-crunching analytics-centered mind.

He spent this last season as an assistant at Coppin State.

Brown spent six seasons at Nevada, helping to coach the Wolf Pack to the 2012 WAC title, as well as coaching teams that made the 2010 and 2012 NIT, with the 2012 team finishing 28-7.

Before Nevada, Brown served as an assistant at Seattle for two seasons, during which the Redhawks went 21-8 in 2008 -- the most wins by the program since the 1984-85 season. Prior to Seattle, Brown spent 2002-06 at Portland.

While with the Pilots, Brown helped guard Eugene Jeter become the second-leading scorer in program history, en route to earning first-team All-West Coast Conference honors in 2004 and 2006. Jeter and fellow guard Donald Wilson became the second-highest scoring tandem in Portland program history.

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JSU Pro Day: Javancy Jones DE/OLB


Overton: FAMU 'a couple of weeks' from basketball hire

TALLAHASSEE, Florida -- Florida A&M Athletic Director Milton Overton Jr. on Saturday said FAMU is still "a couple of weeks out" from naming a new head basketball coach.

Overton said more than 150 people applied for the job, more than he expected.

He said the sheer volume of applicants caused athletic department officials to open the application process more than he anticipated.

He added the search is taking long than he thought it would take, and right now the school is in the process of vetting backgrounds.

"We have a lot of people who want this job," Overton said.

"Even though we had some folks who we were kind of keying on, because we had a really good pool, we just extended the time. It's not optimal, but we have to find the right fit here."

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2017 FAMU Tampa Classic To Renew Rattlers Rivalry with Tennessee State Tigers



RETURN OF THE FAMU TAMPA CLASSIC

TALLAHASSEE, Florida -- – Confidence is high around the Florida A&M University (FAMU) Football Program as they prepare for the upcoming 2017 campaign, and that optimism is due in part to the tremendous fan support from Rattler Nation at Bragg Stadium.

Sparking the uptick in fan and alumni support has been the innovative INVESTING IN CHAMPIONS Annual Giving Program, a fundraising initiative which features a six donor levels, assuring patrons both football and basketball season tickets along with stadium parking, and other amenities all in one package.

This year’s campaign drive to raise $600,000 for Athletics to address Bragg Stadium renovations, as well as underwriting scholarships for student-athletes, and funding summer school tuition, has reached the $300,000 halfway point, thanks to the generous gifts of the Rattler faithful through the INVESTING IN CHAMPIONS program. Go to www.FAMUAthletics.com to Invest today.

The Rattler Nation commitment to athletics was a major factor in helping FAMU finish third (3rd) in NCAA Division I FCS (Football Championship Subdivision) in Home Attendance, averaging 19,710 fans for the four home games in 2016, finishing ahead of such national stalwarts as North Dakota State, Jackson (Miss.) State, Delaware, Grambling and North Carolina A&T.

That 19,710 average was tops among Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), marking the first time FAMU had surpassed traditional attendance kings, Jackson (Miss.) State and Southern-Baton Rouge out of the Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC).

An added benefit for donors to the INVESTING IN CHAMPIONS Program will be the opportunity to purchase advance priority seating for the renewal of the FAMU Tampa Classic featuring longtime rivals FAMU and Tennessee State, which will be played in Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida on Saturday, September 16, 2017.

FAMU Tampa Classic Tickets go on sale Tuesday, April 18th 2017 for Investing In Champions Members for an exclusive buying opportunity until the public on-sale. Go to www.FAMUAthletics.com to become a champion member or renew your Investing In Champion membership this year.

2017 FLORIDA A&M FOOTBALL SCHEDULE 

The Jake Gaither Classic 
Sat, Aug 26 TEXAS SOUTHERN UNIVERSITY Tallahassee, FL TBA 

(Central Time * War Memorial Stadium * SEC-TV)
Thu, Aug 31 University of Arkansas at Little Rock, AR 7:00 PM

FAMU Tampa Classic
Sat, Sep 16 Tennessee State University at Tampa, FL  TBA 

Sat, Sep 23 Savannah State University * at Savannah, GA 6:00 PM

Sat, Sep 30 NORTH CAROLINA CENTRAL * Tallahassee, FL TBA 

Sat, Oct 07 Norfolk State University * at Norfolk, VA TBA

2017 Homecoming Game 
Sat, Oct 14 NORTH CAROLINA A&T STATE * Tallahassee, FL TBA 

Sat, Oct 21 Hampton University * at Hampton, VA 2:00 PM

Oct 28 Morgan State University * at Baltimore, MD TBA

Sat, Nov 04 HOWARD UNIVERSITY * Tallahassee, FL TBA 

The Florida Blue Florida Classic 
Sat, Nov 18 BethuneCookman University * at Orlando, FL TBA 

* Conference Games

ATLANTA IS IN THE FUTURE

Rattler Football fans can also look forward to an annual FAMU Atlanta Classic return beginning in 2018. The 2018 FAMU Football Schedule will include three FAMU Classic Games.

Rattlers Strike, Strike and Strike Again !!!

TSU Tigers Cap Spring with Annual Blue and White Game

NASHVILLE, Tennessee -- Fans of the Tennessee State football team got their first glimpse of the 2017 Tigers on Saturday with the annual Blue and White Spring Scrimmage at Hale Stadium. Using a specialized scoring system, the offense wearing blue topped the defense in white by a 37-16 final score.

Quarterback Treon Harris engineered scoring drives on two of the first three possessions to lead the offense on the afternoon. The transfer from Florida rushed for a touchdown on the day, while fellow quarterback Michael Hughes also had a touchdown pass for the offense.

PHOTO GALLERY - BY SAM JORDAN



A five-play opening drive featured a 25-yard connection from Harris to wide receiver Patrick Smith down the left sideline. Harris, who was 3-for-3 passing on the first possession, capped the drive with a seven-yard touchdown run.

On the next drive, highlighted by Terrell Bonds’ pass breakup for the defense, the offense was forced to punt. Going 5-for-6 on the offense’s third possession, Harris was able to move the offense down the field for another score. Steven Newbold reeled in a pair of first down catches with tight end Aaron Cauthen adding an 18-yard reception near the red zone. Andrew Knox punched in a two-yard touchdown run to finish off the drive.

Hughes took over at quarterback for the offense for the remainder of the first half. The defense forced two punts on the next two possessions with Justin North securing a tackle for a loss to force a third and long on the first drive.

On the final possession of the half, Hughes orchestrated a six-play drive for a score. Wide receiver Ronnie Killings caught a 20-yard pass to set up first and goal before hauling in a seven-yard touchdown on the next play.

The defense stood up to the test to open the third quarter, forcing a pair of three-and-outs.

Hughes ran for a first down and the offense added another on an eight yard first down catch from DeVon Johnson before three-straight stops forced the third punt of the half.

On the final full possession of the game, which included three-first downs, the offense missed a field goal when the drive stalled.

The Spring Game concludes spring action for the Tigers. TSU opens the fall season on Aug. 31 at Georgia State in Atlanta, Ga.

TSU Head Coach Rod Reed
“I thought it went really well. I was pleased to see the offense come out and be able to move the football. We knew we were going to be very vanilla on defense today. There were a lot of things you didn’t see. No pressure, no blitzes or anything like that. I just wanted to see us sitting back in our base defense. Get to their assignments, make the blocks they needed to block, protect who they needed to protect. We broke down in protection a couple of times today but as you can see, Treon (Harris) is really athletic back there, and he’s able to get out of a lot of some situations that some kids just can’t do. That’s a great attribute that he has. I think it’s going to bode well for our program. Defensively, we wanted to see some young guys. We saw the older guys in there probably the first three or four series, and then we watched some young guys. We’re trying to develop a little bit of depth.”
- Thoughts on the scrimmage

“I think the attitude is a lot different. The kids are buying in. Like I said, today, we wanted things to be pretty vanilla. We’ve got a lot of stuff, if you were at the last scrimmage, you saw how dominant that the defense really was. Today, we wanted to sit back and be basic. The main thing is we wanted to come out and showcase a football team for next year. We wanted the fans to be able to come out to see some of the guys they’re going to see next year and to not get anybody injured. I think we accomplished all of that today.”
- On the defense

“He’s very illusive back there. He’s not just a scrambler. He’s got really good pocket awareness. He slides around in the pocket and he’s going to hold it until the very last minute before he gets out of there. You have to like that about your quarterback. He keeps his eyes down field.”
- On the play of quarterback Treon Harris

TENNESSEE STATE UNIVERSITY ATHLETICS MEDIA COMMUNICATIONS