Friday, August 18, 2017

Harris commits to Bethune-Cookman

SUFFOLK, Virginia -- Senior Lady Bulldog Camary Harris has decided where to play her college basketball.

Bethune-Cookman University will be getting a strong King’s Fork High School guard in Harris. This week, she decided she wanted to end her college recruitment and take her talents down to Dayton Beach, Fla., in the fall of 2018.

Harris was the starting point guard on an all-time historic King’s Fork girls’ basketball team. She orchestrated the offense and made plays for her teammates, which saw them playing for the 4A state championship back in March. What made Harris’ play so impressive last season was that she worked her way from an ACL injury. Because of her solid play at the point guard position, she started to spark the interest of NCAA Division I coaches. She was offered by both BCU and Hampton University and decided to roll with BCU.

“The reason I decided to go ahead and commit to BCU is because it was a very family oriented environment,” the senior Lady Bulldog said. “Everyone was really friendly and respectful to one another. The women’s basketball program is really good, and the coaching staff is wonderful.”

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UH hoops to open season vs. Arkansas-Pine Bluff

HONOLULU, Hawaii – The Hawaii basketball team will open its 2017-18 season against a very familiar foe.

Arkansas-Pine Bluff is the first official opponent on the Rainbow Warriors’ schedule Nov. 10, UH announced in revealing the order of its Outrigger Resorts Rainbow Classic opponents today. It is the second time in four years UH slotted the Golden Lions of the SWAC for its opener (2014-15), and in all it will be the sixth trip in eight years to Manoa for UAPB.

UH follows with games against North Dakota (Nov. 12) of the Big Sky and Troy (Nov. 13) of the Sun Belt in the round-robin tournament format. It hasn’t yet been announced if the last game of the tournament will be a late-night game in the ESPN College Hoops Tip-Off Marathon as in recent seasons.

Troy previously put out the field for the Rainbow Classic as part of its schedule but the order of opponents was unknown.

Pine Bluff went 7-25 last season, but North Dakota and Troy made the NCAA Tournament as 15 seeds. UH beat UAPB 64-44 last season and lost to Troy 65-63 at the Stan Sheriff Center.

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ASU, Tuskegee stars receive national preseason honors

MONTGOMERY, Alabama -- Head coaches Brian Jenkins and Willie Slater aren’t the only recognizable names competing in the rekindled Tuskegee-Alabama State rivalry game Sept. 2 at ASU Stadium.

Senior Sam Baptiste, Jonah McCutcheon and Osband Thompson made the Black College Football player of the year watch list and landed on the BOXTOROW preseason All-American team this week.

Baptiste earned first-team All-SWAC honors for the Hornets last season after helping clear run lanes for the conference’s top rushing attack led by 1,200-yard rusher Khalid Thomas. The 6-foot-4, 340-pound lineman out of Waycross, Georgia has the look of someone who could join another ASU lineman in the NFL.

The Oakland Raiders drafted Jylan Ware in the seventh round last April. Baptiste is on an early path to get that prized phone call next spring.

Right now, Baptiste and the ASU offense is preparing to find ways to move the ball on a Tuskegee defense led by Thompson and McCutcheon.

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Takeaways from Jackson State's final fall scrimmage

JACKSON, Mississippi -- Tony Hughes said Thursday that his Tigers aren’t anywhere close to being a finished product.

Jackson State held its third fall scrimmage on the campus of Germantown High School, and although Hughes liked the intensity and physicality he saw, he said he didn’t think his team was ready for the season opener against TCU in two weeks.

“We still have a lot of stuff to clean up,” Hughes said.

Here’s a few highlights and observations from that third scrimmage.

Backfield rising

Depth in the defensive backfield was the only real question mark on that side of the football coming into camp, and the Tigers have found some answers thanks to some young players.

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Alcorn Braves Unveil Challenging 2017-18 Basketball Schedule

LORMAN, Mississippi -- Going up against four NCAA Tournament teams from last year in the non-conference slate, the Alcorn State University men's basketball program released its 2017-18 schedule Thursday.

Alcorn will play a total of 14 home games including nine SWAC contests at the Davey L. Whitney Complex.

The Braves will go on the road to face 2016-17 NCAA Tournament teams in Vanderbilt, Iowa State, Creighton and Baylor. Alcorn will also head to LSU, Northern Iowa, Central Arkansas and Tulane non-conference.

"We put together a very challenging schedule this year that will show us what we're made of early. We have a really young team, but we still want to compete and play at a high level," said head coach Montez Robinson. "The goal for us is to stay healthy and be prepared for conference play."

The season opener is set for Friday, Nov. 10 at LSU. After five road games, the Braves will play their home opener against Yale on Wednesday, Nov. 22.

Alcorn will also host non-conference games against Concordia (AL), Rust College, Fisk University and Blue Mountain College.

SWAC play will begin Monday, Jan. 1 when the Braves head to Prairie View A&M. Alcorn's first conference home game is against Jackson State on Saturday, Jan. 6.

The conference will repeat its double round robin format where each school plays each other twice (once home, once away). The top-eight teams in the final standings will qualify for the SWAC Championships beginning Tuesday, March 6.

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Imhotep graduate one of MEAC’s top running backs

PHILADELPHIA, Pennsylvania -- The start of college football season is right around the corner for many Black colleges. There are a number of great players among the ranks of the Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

Mike Waters is a name to remember as the season unfolds. Waters, an All-Public League standout at Imhotep Charter, is a terrific running back for Delaware State. A year ago, Waters really showcased his talent as a freshman. He led the Hornets in rushing with 820 yards while scoring five touchdowns. He set a school freshman record with that rushing mark. Waters finished third in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference in rushing.



The 5-foot-10, 190-pound sophomore made third-team All-MEAC. He also was named Hero College Sports FCS freshman All-America.

He broke the Hornets’ freshman single-game record with 224 yards rushing on 30 attempts against Howard University last season. Big things are expected from him this season. He had a tremendous scholastic career, leading Imhotep Charter to its first PIAA state championship in school history. He had an impressive 201 yards and scored three touchdowns in a 40-3 victory over Erie Cathedral to capture the state crown. Waters has been named preseason All-MEAC second-team.

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Tuesday, August 15, 2017

PVAMU Football To Open 2018 Season At Rice On August 25



PRAIRIE VIEW, Texas -- The Prairie View A&M University football team will open the 2018 season at Rice on Saturday, August 25.

It will be the second time in three seasons the Panthers and Owls will meet on the gridiron. In 2016, Prairie View A&M gained 457 total yards in the 65-44 loss.

The game will be played in Week Zero, which is allowed under NCAA rules because Rice plays at Hawaii that season.

"It's a great game for us to open the 2018 season," said PVAMU head coach Willie Simmons. "Anytime we can play FBS teams in our area, it helps us. It allows our fans to travel to the game. We had a really good following last year at Rice. For us to be able to schedule games of this magnitude with so many good teams within driving distance of Prairie View is great for our program. It will be a good measuring stick for us and a good gauge for where we are as a team to start the season."

The 2017 Panthers will open the season at Texas Southern in Labor Day Classic XXXIII on Sept. 2 at 8 p.m.



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Three for three: Florida A&M sets another season ticket sales record



TALLAHASSEE, Florida -- Once again, Florida A&M’s football program is reaping the benefits of a dedicated fan base.

The hard work being done in the ticket office certainly helps, too.

For the third year in a row, the Rattlers have set a season ticket sales record. Every year since Athletic Director Milton Overton’s first at the helm, the program has set new marks for season tickets sold.

Stephanie Kimbrough, director of ticket sales and operations for FAMU, said as of Monday afternoon, 4,472 season tickets have been sold. Last year’s total was 4,300.

“We’re shooting for 5,000,” she said. “We’re hoping we can get that last push. We’re trying to get those last ones this week and next week.

“I think people are starting to see the value of the Investing in Champions program and how it benefits our student athletes. That has contributed tremendously to our success.”

FAMU will open the 2017 college football schedule with the Jake Gaither Classic against Texas Southern in Bragg Memorial Stadium at noon on Aug. 26.



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Monday, August 14, 2017

Gold Nuggets picked 1st; 4 named preseason All-GCAC


NEW ORLEANS — Six-time defending volleyball champion Xavier University of Louisiana is favored to win the Gulf Coast Athletic Conference title again, according to a preseason poll of the league's head coaches.
     

XULA has four of the eight players on the preseason All-GCAC team: libero Amanda Perry, setter Tiffany Phillips, middle blocker/right side Hasani Salaam and outside hitter Juliana Tomasoni. Perry, Phillips and Salaam are sophomores; Tomasoni is a senior.
     

The GCAC announced the results Monday.
     

Following the Gold Nuggets in the predicted order of finish were Dillard in second place, SUNO third, Talladega fourth, Tougaloo fifth, Edward Waters sixth and Philander Smith seventh.
    

Perry, from Bolingbrook, Ill., and a graduate of Bolingbrook High School, was GCAC Defender of the Year, first-team All-GCAC and Louisiana Freshman of the Year in 2016 and set a XULA season record of 529 digs. Phillips, from Gardena, Calif., and a graduate of Bishop Montgomery High School, was GCAC Setter of the Year and second-team All-GCAC a year ago. Phillips led the conference with 8.34 assists per set.
    

Salaam, from New Orleans and a graduate of Lusher Charter High School, was second-team All-GCAC in 2016 and led the Gold Nuggets with a .249 hitting percentage and 62 blocks. Tomasoni, from Nova Trento, Brazil, and a graduate of Francisco Mazzola in her home country and Northeastern Oklahoma A&M, led the Gold Nuggets a year ago with 345 kills, 27 aces and 14 double-doubles and was second with a .242 hitting percentage and 391 digs. She was MVP of the GCAC Tournament, first-team All-GCAC and second-team All-Louisiana.
     

The Gold Nuggets, led by new head coach Pat Kendrick, will open their 10th season of intercollegiate volleyball Aug. 25 in the UM-Dearborn Early Bird at Dearborn, Mich. — 3 p.m. EDT against Trinity International and 7 p.m. against Madonna. The XULA home opener will start at 6 p.m. Aug. 29 against Mobile at the Convocation Center.

Ed Cassiere, Assistant Athletic Director for Communications
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Chicago State Cougars Finish 3-0 in the Bahamas with 93-79 Win Over CTG Knights

NASSAU, Bahamas – Chicago State men's basketball finished off its exhibition slate here with a 3-0 record after earning a 93-79 win today over the CTG Knights at Kendal G.L. Isaacs Gymnasium.

Juniors Anthony Harris (Gary, Ind./Griffith (Ind.)) and Fred Sims, Jr. (Chicago, Ill./North Lawndale) each produced seven points in the first quarter as CSU forced its opponents to shoot 26 percent from the field en route to a 26-13 lead then posted a slim 18-14 second quarter advantage to take a 44-27 leading margin at halftime. CTG outscored Chicago State by a 25-19 tally in the third quarter to close within 63-52 before the Cougars posted a slim 30-27 score in the final stanza to end the game.

The Green and White used balanced scoring to defeat the Knights as six of the seven players that played finished the game with double digit points. CSU also held advantages in rebounds (57-47), assists (19-10) and blocked shots (5-1).



Harris finished with a game-high 18 points and three steals to lead Chicago State, while senior Deionte Simmons (Detroit, Mich./Lewisville (Texas)) produced a double-double of a game-leading 18 rebounds and 15 points.

Sims, Jr. also tallied 15 points followed by redshirt freshman Travon Bell (Chicago, Ill./Mather) with 14 points and seven rebounds, and freshman Cameron Bowles (Chicago, Ill./Kenwood) added 13 points. Senior Glen Burns (West Memphis, Ark./West Memphis Christian) rounded out the group by scoring 13 points, grabbing eight rebounds and dishing out a game-high eight assists.

Van Hutchinson matched Harris for game high scoring honors with 18 to lead four CTG Knights in double figures. Livingston Munnings contributed a double-double of 14 rebounds and 13 points.

The Cougars will spend the next couple of days enjoying Nassau before they return to Chicago on Tuesday.

BOX SCORE

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Cam Newton's brother Caylin on Howard: 'This is my Auburn'

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Caylin Newton has spent much of his formative years in the shadow of his older brother, former Auburn quarterback Cam Newton.

Caylin is a decade younger than Cam, the former NFL MVP who stars for the Carolina Panthers, and has been compared to him at every stage of his childhood on the football field. Caylin is hoping to change that now that he's entering his freshman year at Howard, a small historically black university in Washington D.C. that plays in the MEAC.



"I'm trying to make my own path," Caylin recently told the Washington Post. "I'm trying to be a person that stands for who I am, but my last name is my last name. I get it. I mean, he's a big deal. NFL MVP. So I can't be not owning who my brother is."

Still, Caylin is trying to make a name for himself for the Bison after signing with the program in February. While both were standouts at Atlanta area high schools, Cam has 6 inches on his little brother and was a far more coveted prospect. Caylin threw for 3,322 yards and 33 touchdowns as a senior at Grady High while running for more than 1,000 yards and 13 scores, but his size disadvantage kept him more under the radar despite his family name.

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MEAC Monday: Hampton plays in Puerto Rico while UMES and Bethune-Cookman release 2017-2018 schedules

HAMPTON, Virginia -- WE HAVE SOME BASKETBALL GAME ACTION!

Two more MEAC teams have released their 2017-2018 schedules. Yet what really gets me excited is live basketball action, and thanks to Hampton we have a little warm up for the upcoming season.

How well are the Hampton Pirates coming together? A team-building trip can give us a few answers.

The Pirates played three games this weekend in Puerto Rico against international competition and went 3-0. On Friday, the Pirates defeated UC Bayamon 86-60 behind an impressive defensive performance. Outstanding sophomore guard Jermaine Marrow led the charge with 14 points, seven assists and five rebounds. The Pirates saw three others score in double figures as Austin Colbert scored 13, Lysander Bracey had 12 and Greg Heckstall added 10 points accompanied with 12 rebounds. The balanced offensive attack provided a comfortable lead, but it was the stifling defense that made the difference. The Pirates held UC Bayamon to just 26 percent shooting on the night.

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HAMPTON MEN FINISH PUERTO RICO TRIP 3-0 WITH 78-64 WIN

GUAYNABO, PUERTO RICO – The Hampton University men's basketball team finished a 3-0 weekend of international competition in Puerto Rico with a 78-64 win over Universidad Metropolitana (UMET) on Sunday night.

In a reverse of Saturday night's victory, Hampton opened the game outscoring the hosts 23-12 in the first quarter and held a 49-32 lead at the half. UMET outscored the Pirates 32-29 in the second half, but couldn't get closer.

Jermaine Marrow topped Hampton with 21 points and nine rebounds while Kalin Fisher added 12 points for the double figure scorers on Sunday.

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New York Jets Signs Former JSU WR Daniel Williams



NEW YORK, New York -- The Jets signed wide receiver Daniel Williams and waived WR Deshon Foxx.

Williams recorded 47 receptions for 599 yards and three touchdowns for Jackson State in 2016. The 6'3", 200-pounder totaled 2,497 yards and 19 touchdowns on 184 receptions in four seasons for the Tigers.

Foxx originally signed a reserve/future contract with the Jets in January, but was waived May 9. He was re-signed later that month when the team placed WR Devin Smith on injured reserve after he tore his ACL in Phase One of the offseason workout program.

Dan turned heads at JSU Pro Day in April, clocking a 4.3 in the 40 yard dash. He signed with the Raiders in May as an undrafted free agent and participated in rookie minicamp.

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Sunday, August 13, 2017

FAMU bound Wilson High graduate hit by stray bullet dies

Jamahri Sydnor
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Jamahri Sydnor spoke with the enthusiasm of a cheerleader and an eloquence beyond her years.

Whether the event was ordinary or exceptional, the 17-year-old approached it with unbridled energy and a broad smile. She jumped for joy for classmates who passed an exam or were accepted to college. She convinced a discouraged friend to stay in school and led an impromptu dance aboard a sightseeing boat around Manhattan.

She was so excited about her future and heading to Florida A&M University in about 10 days that she posted a copy of her acceptance letter on Twitter.

A single bullet ended her plans.

Sydnor died Saturday, two days after she was shot in the head by a stray bullet fired about 3:30 p.m. Thursday as she drove along a street in a Northeast Washington neighborhood.

Police said she remained on life support until Saturday, a difficult state for her friends to comprehend as they recalled her upbeat demeanor. “There was never a day I saw her she didn’t have a smile on her face,” said Patrice Arrington, the college and career coordinator at her school, Woodrow Wilson High in Northwest Washington.

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Alcorn students, faculty, and HBCU family remember longtime band director Samuel S. Griffin


LORMAN, Mississippi — The Alcorn State University family gathered in Vicksburg Saturday to say their final goodbyes to long-time band director Samuel Griffin.

To many people at Alcorn, Griffin wasn’t just a band director — he was a father figure. Annette Jones-Baskin is one of Griffin’s former students, “He’s been like a mentor, father figure, role model. He was a whole lot to me so he gave me the opportunity to go to college because I was from a family that couldn’t afford to send me to a university.”

Throughout his nearly 50 year career at Alcorn, Griffin provided dozens of students with scholarships and promising futures.

“He put quite a few people through school,” says former student Keith Thompson. “And if it wouldn’t have been for my band scholarship I don’t know if I would have even gone to school.”

Jeffrey Knight agrees, “The scholarships that he gave over the years, from all walks of life, venture out and get different careers and he was always behind them as long as you did a positive thing about it. He was always there for you.”

Griffin is best known for giving the marching band it’s nickname, Dyn-O-Mite.

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Griffin began his career at Alcorn in 1966. Following a brief period as assistant band director, Griffin assumed the position as director of bands in 1969. He created the marching band nickname, Sounds of Dyn-O-Mite and was well known for his auxiliary innovations, including the Golden Girls and the Purple Flashers Flag Corp. He led the marching band to halftime shows in high profile venues including the Miami Orange Bowl, Los Angeles Coliseum, Houston Astrodome, the Georgia Dome in Atlanta and the Superdome in New Orleans the year of its opening in 1975.

Griffin displayed his love for Alcorn by being one of the University’s top recruiters. Under his leadership, a number of students made Alcorn their school of choice. Many graduated to successful professional careers and lives, crediting Griffin as an integral contributor to their achievement.

While Griffin distinguished himself as a musician and band extraordinaire, he also supported the mission of the University through outstanding community service. In addition to the hundreds of parades for municipalities, school districts, and civic organizations, he served as a clinician and adjudicator for many festivals and competitions. Griffin retired from Alcorn in 2012.

In November 2016, the Band Hall at Alcorn was named in Griffin’s honor. In January 2017, he received the Honda Battle of the Bands’ Honoree Award for his outstanding contributions to historically black college and university marching bands.



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Nimmons trying to live up to family legacy at WSSU

WINSTON-SALEM, North Carolina --Jack Nimmons chuckles when asked the obvious question about his hall of fame father.

Nimmons, a junior defensive end for Winston-Salem State, says whenever his father, Jonathan “Sly” Nimmons, starts waxing poetic about his playing days with the Rams in the 1980s, the sentences start the same way: “Back when I played ... ”

But that’s OK with Jack Nimmons because he can’t think of a better role model to follow than his father, who is in the Big House Gaines Hall of Fame after being a four-year letterman and an All-CIAA, All-NAIA and All-America player.

“Of course he starts those sentences like that,” Nimmons said.

Nimmons, who is from Reidsville, has worked hard to become a starter for the Rams after beginning his college career at St. Augustine’s. After graduating from Reidsville High School he went to St. Aug’s, where he redshirted but never let his dream of going to WSSU die.

“I always wanted to come to Winston-Salem State,” Nimmons said. “So after the year at St. Aug’s, I took a chance and came here as a walk-on.”

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Zanders takes step forward, defense stands tall in NCCU Eagles’ scrimmage

DURHAM, North Carolina -- The North Carolina Central football team held a two-hour scrimmage at O’Kelly-Riddick Stadium Saturday morning. It was the first time coach Jerry Mack and his staff got a chance to evaluate the team under game conditions with officials and plenty of fans watching.

The Eagles, who start the season on Sept. 2 at Duke, have some holes to fill on both sides of the ball, especially on offense, where they have to replace seven starters. Two of the main concerns will be replacing quarterback Malcolm Bell and four offensive linemen.

Here are some observations from the scrimmage:

Transfer quarterback Micah Zanders took the majority of the first-team reps. A sophomore out of Hinds (Miss.) Community College, Zanders threw a touchdown pass to sophomore receiver Xavier McKoy on the second drive of the day. He also threw a long pass to David Miller to set up a short touchdown run by Dorrel McClain. Zanders, who arrived in Durham over the summer, said he is getting much more comfortable in the offense and with the coaching staff. Mack, however, won’t hand the reins over to Zanders just yet.

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Only way to go is up: DSU Hornet players feeling positive during scrimmage

DOVER, Delaware — There’s a familiar refrain around Delaware State University’s preseason football camp.

All the Hornets can do is improve on last season after a 0-11 record.

“There’s only one way to go from last year,” said junior running back Brycen Alleyne. “The only way we can go is up. We’re on the up right now. Last year was last year, we’re definitely a different team than last year.”

“The only way we can go is up,” agreed sophomore quarterback Keenan Black. “We’re not focused on last year. The intensity has changed from last year and it’s like night and day. We’re moving up and trying to get better every day.”

“All we can do is go up,” Black added. “That’s what we got. That’s it.”

That’s the type of cautious optimism highlighting the camp so far. The Hornets know last year was the worst case scenario and they think they have the pieces in place to make sure it doesn’t happen again.

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S.C. STATE FOOTBALL: Linebacker corps features 2 of the best

ORANGEBURG, South Carolina -- Prior to the start of preseason football drills on Aug. 2, the consensus among the S.C. State defensive staff was that the front line would be the strength of the Bulldog defense in 2017. Nearly two weeks later, and after about 10 practices, that opinion has not changed.

But another group receiving a lot of praise is the S.C. State linebackers who, throughout camp, have demonstrated they are not very far behind the defensive line in talent and expectations. Two players in last year’s starting rotation – Tyler Smith and Shaquan Brock – have graduated and will be missed. But the staff is not expecting any drop-off in performance or execution.

“Between the linebackers and the defensive front,” they make up the strength of our football team this year,” Bulldogs head coach Buddy Pough said. “If our linebackers play up to their potential, we should be pretty good overall on defense and give our opponents a little something to think about.

“The depth of the group is still being developed, but we expect this position to play at a very high level.”

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Texas Southern Tigers open second week of practice in full pads

HOUSTON, Texas -- Texas Southern Tigers football kicked off the second full week of Fall camp with a spirited full pads practice session on Monday.

TSU Defensive Coordinator Tom Anthony has liked what he has seen out of the Tigers defense up to this point of camp and is pleased with the overall level of depth the Tigers boast defensively.

"I think we did a good job or recruiting a lot of depth on our football team at multiple positions on the field," said Anthony. "We have three guys that started nine of our eleven games last season in Sean Jones, Archie Rice, and Dondre Dobbins. With that being said pretty much every other spot on our defense is open."

Texas Southern has several key positions open on both sides of the ball and that has clearly become evident with the high level of completion exhibited throughout the Tigers practices.

"We have a lot of new faces having lost so many starters from last season," said Anthony. "The first week of camp was really good as far as position battles and guys competing for a job. Just seeing guys out there competing at a high level has been one of the positives from the first week of camp."

TSU will open the 2017 campaign on the road versus the Florida A&M Rattlers in Tallahassee. Despite not knowing too much about the varying personnel packages they will have to line up against Anthony seems confident in his teams' ability to adapt and adjust.

"We're focusing on the basics right now," said Anthony. "We'll go into that game with a lot of solid favorite calls out of our packages and our kids know that the first game of the season is always going to be about adjustments seeing as how team can change a lot schematically from year to year so we'll have to adjust to anything new that we might see."

Tickets for the 2017 Labor Day Classic which will be held this season at the TSU Tigers home BBVA Compass Stadium are currently on sale at the TSU and PVAMU bookstores as well as Wolf's Department store and the BBVA Box Office. Tickets can also be purchased online at www.axs.com.

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Alabama State wraps up second scrimmage of Fall Camp

MONTGOMERY, Alabama -- The Alabama State University football team completed its second scrimmage of the Fall Camp on Saturday morning at the ASU Football Stadium.

"We have improved in every phase and that's what we set out to do," Alabama State head coach Brian Jenkins said. "I think the day was prosperous for us. We saw some better things than we did in the last scrimmage. It was good to see some of the young guys get in there and perform and do some things."

The Hornets worked on all facets of the game as the offense improved from its first scrimmage.

"The offense is rhythm and timing," Jenkins said. "You've got to catch your rhythm and timing and that does take some time. But today the timing was a lot better and the rhythm was a lot better, which was good to see."

Alabama State's defense picked up where it left off in Wednesday's scrimmage and continues to show improvement from the defensive scheme that first-year defensive coordinator Osita Alaribe has installed.

"The defense is doing a good job and that's only going to make us better offensively," Jenkins said. "I'm glad to see the guys swarming the ball and glad to see the guys tackling the way that they are. Today they picked up where they left off on Wednesday."

The special teams have shown improvement during the fall and have made big strides with the addition of freshman kicker Hunter Hanson.

"I am very excited to have him in camp," Jenkins said. "I've been telling people that I thought this kid was special. I thought we really got lucky when we signed him. He has great work ethic and fits right in. He has a great championship leg and he will help us tremendously."

The Hornets have three more practices before school begins on Wednesday.

Alabama State will play six games at the ASU Football Stadium, including the opener – The Labor Day Classic: A Marion Nine Invitational – against Tuskegee. Tickets are still available and fans are encouraged to purchase tickets by calling the Alabama State University box office at (334) 229-4551 or (334) 229-8479. Fans may are able to purchase tickets online by clicking here or clicking here.

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For complete coverage of Alabama State football, please follow the Hornets on social media at @BamaStateFB (Twitter), /BamaStateSports (Facebook) and @BamaStateSports (Instagram) or visit the official home of Alabama State Athletics at BamaStateSports.com.

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AAMU's Spady pleased with Bulldogs after first scrimmage


SCRIMMAGE PHOTO GALLERY

HUNTSVILLE, Alabama -- To say that Head Coach James Spady was pleased after Saturday's scrimmage is an understatement.

In fact, he was more than pleased.

"I was pleased," he said. "I was so pleased with the way we competed."

And, speaking of competing, Spady said it's a "tight race" for the starting quarterback's position.

Redshirt junior Damian May and freshman Aqeel Glass are the prime contenders for the starting spot and both played well Saturday, Spady said.

The Bulldogs ran about 100 plays in the game-like situations which included referees.

On the offensive side, receiver Monte Jones had a couple of big grabs – one for a touchdown and the other negated by a downfield holding call. Running back Jordan Bentley broke loose on a 64-yard run and May, Glass and Dylan Smith engineered several drives.

Senior Nick Carden showed why he's the All-SWAC preseason team kicker and his left foot gives the Bulldogs a long-range scoring threat.

The defense also made several stops and pass breakups, forcing the offense into the field-goal situations.

And, as an added touch for some HBCU football atmosphere, the Marching Maroon & White marched into Louis Crews Stadium.

As for the Bulldogs, "We've made a tremendous amount of progress," Spady said. "They're doing the little things every day."

Spady did say there were things still to work out, such as game management by the quarterbacks, blocking assignments and the like.

But, overall, you can say he was "pleased."

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Florida A&M Offense Shows Marked Improvement in Scrimmage

TALLAHASSEE, Florida -- The Florida A&M football team had their best scrimmage of camp, led by quarterback Ryan Stanley. While the FAMU defensive unit continues to provide a stingy front, the first string offense broke the scoring with a long pass from Stanley to a streaking Marcus Williams. The beginning of what looks to be a more balanced team, still led by it’s defense, but with signs of explosiveness on offense, is just what head coach Alex Wood needed to see.

“We did some good things today on both sides of the ball. Obviously, our defense is just a little ahead of the offense at this point, but the offensive unit is beginning to show the signs of getting in sync and that’s exciting,” Wood said.

The veteran defensive ends continue to press the No.1 offense. Wood continues to pit the No.1 offense against the No.1 defense. While Calvin Darville and Elijah Price are arguably the best defensive end tandem in the conference, the offensive line is finding ways to solve them at times. Antonio Miller comes in as the third defensive end with a burst of pursuit hard to defend by any of the teams the Rattlers faced last year.



Miller feels the defense is gelling well in getting prepared for this season. “We’re coming out with a lot of energy and enthusiasm to get to the ball. We’re trying to shut down the run and force teams to pass. We feel we have the defensive backs to win that game and the ends that can get to the quarterback,” Miller said.

With exactly two weeks to the kickoff of the 2017 season, Stanley is eager to get to the first game. “We’re kind of tired of hitting one another. We are ready to play someone else, we’re ready for the season to start. Coming out for our third scrimmage you could see a big difference offensively. Across the board we’re getting our assignments down. As a whole we did a good job. Defense did a good job today too. We had a good hot day today and we took advantage of it,” Stanley said.

Special teams showed improvement as well as redshirt freshman Kalil Clark is proving that he is the man to beat as placekicker. The competition to replace All-MEAC punter Colby Blanton is still wide open as Clark joins three others competing for that position.

The Rattlers will open the season Aug. 26 against the Texas Southern Tigers in a 12 noon start. The game is designated as the inaugural Jake Gaither Classic and will be broadcasted on ESPNU.

The Rattlers will make an appearance at two events that have been combined into one. The Rattler Booster Kickoff and Fan Day have been combined into one big event this year. On Sunday, Aug.20, the Rattler Boosters will host their annual kickoff at the Al Lawson Center at 2PM. Tickets are $25 and include lunch. Patrons of the kickoff will be first in line to get autographs from the football team when doors open at 4PM for the general public for Fan Day, which is free of charge. The Rattler volleyball team will also be on hand to sign their posters as they prepare for the opening of their season.

FLORIDA A&M UNIVERSITY ATHLETICS MEDIA COMMUNICATIONS

NCCU Football Invites Fans to Attend Scrimmage, ‘Meet the Eagles’



DURHAM, North Carolina -- Fans of North Carolina Central University football will have an opportunity to see the team in action and up close on Saturday, Aug. 19, starting at 5 p.m. with an intrasquad scrimmage and followed by the annual "Meet the Eagles" at O'Kelly-Riddick Stadium on the campus of NCCU. Admission is free.

Fans will be able to meet the student-athletes and coaches of the 2017 NCCU football team, who will also be available for pictures and autographs. The NCCU Sound Machine marching band and NCCU cheerleaders will also be in attendance, and there will be inflatables for the kids.

NCCU kicks off the 2017 football season on Sept. 2 at 6 p.m. against Durham neighbor Duke University in the Bull City Gridiron Classic. The Eagles first home game is scheduled for Sept. 9 at 6 p.m. versus Shaw University inside O'Kelly-Riddick Stadium.

Season tickets are on sale now. For ticket information, call the NCCU Ticket Office at 919-530-5170 or visit NCCUEaglePride.com.

NORTH CAROLINA CENTRAL UNIVERSITY ATHLETICS MEDIA COMMUNICATIONS

Tennessee State Tigers' Wayne Martin Inks Professional Contract with Prishtina BC in Kosovo



NASHVILLE, Tennessee -- Recent Tennessee State graduate Wayne Martin (Brooklyn, N.Y.) signed his first contract to play professional basketball overseas for Prishtina BC in Kosovo.

“I don’t think I’ve ever been more proud of an individual than I am of Wayne Martin,” TSU Head Coach Dana Ford said. “He’s a college graduate of Tennessee State University and now he’s a professional basketball player. All the credit belongs to Wayne and his mom and their willingness to allow us to help him become who he is today.”

Martin starred for the Tigers for the last two seasons, helping lead TSU to back-to-back winning seasons. After transferring to TSU from Navarro College in Texas, the 6-7 forward put up 12.8 points and 9.1 rebounds per game in his two seasons in Nashville.

“Coach (Dana) Ford got me ready for the real world and for professional basketball,” Martin said.

- Prishtina BC competes in the Kosovo-SuperLeague.
- The 6-7 forward led TSU with 14.4 points per game en route to Second Team All-Ohio Valley Conference honors in 2016-17.
- Martin dominated on the glass, finishing second in the OVC with 9.2 rebounds per game and tying for third in the conference with 10 double-doubles as a senior.
- Martin also earned NABC Second Team All-District 19 and BOXTOROW First Team All-America for his play as a senior.
- The Brooklyn, N.Y. native made 47 starts with 60 appearances over the last two seasons with the Tigers.
- In his junior season with the Tigers, Martin put up 11.1 points and 9.2 rebounds per game.
- In his first game in a TSU uniform on Nov. 13, 2015, Martin made an immediate impact with 27 points and 21 rebounds at Loyola Maryland, becoming the first OVC player with a 20/20 game since Morehead State’s Kenneth Faried posted three such games in 2010-11.
- Throughout his TSU career, Martin recorded 20 double-doubles.



TENNESSEE STATE UNIVERSITY ATHLETICS MEDIA COMMUNICATIONS

TSU Tiger Camp 2017: Day 18 - Second Scrimmage



NASHVILLE, Tennessee -- THE SCRIMMAGE
- The defense forced a punt on the first three series of the scrimmage, including two three-and-outs.
- The Tigers scored on the fourth drive, needing five plays to go 80 yards. Seth Rowland started the drive with a 17 yard run. Tyler Black caught two passes from Hughes for 26 yards and carried once for 22 yards. Hughes capped of the drive with a two yard scoring run.
- The defense bounced back forcing a fumble in between a pair of three-and-out’s over the next three possessions. Antowan Malone forced a fumble to end a drive on just the second play as Michael Perry made the recovery.
- The offense drove 58 yards into field goal range, before miscues moved them out of range. Hughes combined with Miles Cavitt for 22 yards and Ronnie Killings for 23 yards. Hughes added an 11 yard run.
- The defense forced another three-and-out and a fumble to end a second drive.
- The offense converted the turnover into points going 43 yards in five plays. Seth Rowland opened the drive with a five yard run and capped it off with a one yard plunge for a touchdown.
- Hughes connected on passes with Lawrence Segree II for 12 yards and Cavitt for 25.
- Kullen Wells hit Mahlon Medley for 12 yards to open the final drive before the defense stopped the offense on the next three plays.

PHOTO GALLERY

SCRIMMAGE #2
Total Plays: 58
Red Zone Quarterbacks: Michael Hughes vs. Kullen Wells
Location: Hale Stadium
Weather: Mostly Sunny, 82

TOTALS
- Rushing: 29 carries for 103 yards
- Passing: 13-of-21 for 171 yards
- Touchdowns: Three (all rushing)
- Antowan Malone and Dante’ Ferguson forced fumbles
- Michael Perry and Joe Johnson recovered fumbles
- Vincent Sellers recorded the lone interception when he picked off Michael Hughes in the first red zone series.
- Latrelle Lee recorded a sack of Kullen Wells, while Michael Perry and Andrew Cothran teamed up to sack Hughes.



RED ZONE DRILL
- Vincent Sellers dropped a potential interception on second down, before stepping in front of a Michael Hughes pass one play later.
- The Tigers needed just one play to find the end zone on Wells’ drive as Seth Rowland busted through the right side and down the sideline for a 25-yard scoring scamper.

OFFENSE
- Redshirt sophomore Michael Hughes was 10-for-14 with 143 yards and one interception.
- Redshirt freshman Kullen Wells finished 3-of-7 for 28 yards.
- Sophomore Seth Rowland led all rushers with 63 yards on nine carries and two touchdowns.
- Running back Tyler Black caught a scrimmage high three passes for 36 yards; Miles Cavitt went for 47 yards on two receptions.

SPECIAL TEAMS
- The place kickers converted on all three PAT’s; Coby Weiss was 2-for-2, while Mitchell Boudreaux was 1-for-1
- No field goals were attempted
- Austin Rowley punted eight times; longest came on a 49 yarder from his own 18 yard line.

UPCOMING EVENTS
- Final scrimmage will take place on Sat., August 19
- The Senior Kickoff Luncheon is set for Fri., August 25
- Fan day will be held on Sat., August 26
- Tennessee State at Georgia State on Thur., August 31



QUOTES

Senior Defensive Lineman Latrelle Lee
- Thoughts on the defense
“I thought we played well in a lot of aspects. We played a lot of freshmen and underclassmen today. There were some mental busts here and there, but we played well. We played hard, played fast and we flew to the ball. We had a few turnovers today, so it was good.”

- On creating turnovers
“I think it’s really the scheme and how our coaches put us in spots to make those turnovers and then us just playing relentlessly. We really try to get to the ball and try to strip the ball to create turnovers.

Freshman Defensive Back Vincent Sellers
- On the defense’s performance in the scrimmage
“I felt that we came out pretty strong in the run game. I think we can still get a lot better. Coach has been putting us in a very good position to make plays, and we just have to keep getting better over time.”

- On understanding the defense as a freshman
“I’m getting pretty comfortable. I have a great starter ahead of me, Laquarius Cook. He’s given me all the insight on what to do and what not to do. I also have a great defensive coordinator who has been getting on me in meeting, so that’s helped me get pretty comfortable with the defense.”

Quarterback Michael Hughes
- On the positives from the offense
“Some of the positives today were that we drove the ball a couple times. That was a good thing that we did better than last week. We scored a couple of touchdowns, so that was a positive thing. We’re going against a great defense, and we got a couple of scores, so we’re good with that.”

- On getting to scrimmage
“It’s great. The one thing is that preparation is the key. When we can come out here and scrimmage against each other against a great defense like we have, that just makes a better team.”

Running Back Seth Rowland
- On the positives from the offense
“I think we did pretty well up front. We had good blocking up front and we got the ball off better than in recent scrimmages. We still have room to clean it up and get better.”

- On the running backs
“I think all the running backs did pretty well today. In the beginning, we were hot on running the ball. We were breaking runs every play.”

TENNESSEE STATE UNIVERSITY ATHLETICS MEDIA COMMUNICATIONS

Howard Bison RJ Cole Is Ready To Leave His Mark On The Hilltop

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- It's a new year on the horizon for the Howard University men's basketball team and freshman guard RJ Cole is ready to make his mark.

The three-star athlete under ESPN's ranking of the nation's top prep stars came to The Mecca from nationally ranked St. Anthony High School. With offers from various Division I programs, including crosstown rival Georgetown, Cole knew he wanted to switch things up.

"I chose Howard because of the education but I also wanted to be different, coming here for basketball," said Cole. "I thought this would be a change for me and a change for anyone else who would think of this as a different opportunity. This is a family. I like the culture here and the storied history around Howard."



Being different isn't an easy task, which Cole is learning as his first summer as a collegiate student-athlete winds down.

"Honestly, it's a lot," Cole stated. "It's been hard because I'm not used to having long classes, being so tired. We have to be in the weight room, at conditioning, practice, open gym and individual workouts. It's a big transition but I'm getting used to it. I just have to buckle down and take care of myself, getting the proper rest that I need. Even though it's a lot, it's really good to be around my teammates. Everyone here is cool and we're getting to know each other so it'll be easier when the season starts."

Although he spends plenty of time on Howard's campus, Cole had the chance to participate in one of D.C.'s most storied basketball traditions, playing in the Kenner League. He even got to team up with fellow Bison Charles "CJ" Williams.

"It's really helping because everyone is bigger than me," mentioned Cole. "It's more of a physical thing. Being able to get used to playing against pros and college guys helps me learn what to expect. How to take those hits or bumps and bruises now because I'm getting used to it this summer. It's helping a lot to be playing with CJ too. Playing in the Kenner League, we've been involving each other more and it'll help us during the season. We'll be able to gel better when it comes to those big situations, those big games."

Cole proved in high school that he was ready for big moments after he helped lead St. Anthony to a state title, the 28th overall under longtime head coach Bob Hurley Sr. However, he couldn't hide the fact that it took plenty of hard work to get there.

"When I first transferred to St. Anthony, it was tough because I wasn't used to someone always being on me," Cole admitted. "My dad was my coach before but this was different. Coach Hurley always had something to say. At first, I looked at it in the wrong manner but as I got older I realized that everything he said was because he wanted us to do well. He wanted us to do good for ourselves and good in life. It was a great experience. The player I was for him my senior year opened up doors for me. Our relationship is really close. I still talk to him and his family."

As he continues his transition into college life with the 2017-18 school year starting in a couple weeks, the Union, N.J. native is on the path to having a successful rookie season.

"I've been playing basketball my whole life," Cole emphasized. "Being on the floor. Being able to play every night, to show up and put a jersey on your back. That's what it's about."

We'll definitely be watching. Will you?

by Candace Johnson, Assistant Director of Athletic Media Relations
HOWARD UNIVERSITY BISON MEDIA RELATIONS

Daley Named New Head Softball Coach at EWC

JACKSONVILLE, Florida -- Edward Waters has promoted Assistant Coach Brian Daley to be the fifth Head Softball Coach in program history. Daley replaces now former Head Coach and Interim Director of Athletics Stanley B. Cromartie, and helped lead the Lady Tigers to its most historic season in 2017.

"I affectionately call him "Sarge" because of his take-charge attitude of our program." said Cromartie. "What he has brought to our program in just a short time here is respectability across the country and I am confident that under his leadership, our program will continue to reach unprecedented heights."

A native of Beloit, Ohio and also growing up in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Daley, helped guide the Tigers to 27 wins last season, a runner-up finish in the Association of Independent Institutions (A. I. I.) Softball Championship, and the program's first-ever appearance in the NAIA Softball Opening Round. Under his guidance the Edward Waters College Softball team raised its team batting average over 90 points from the 2015 season.

Prior to joining EWC, Daley was the Head Varsity Softball Coach at Nathan B. Forrest/Westside High School in Jacksonville from 2013-2015. He helped lead the Lady Rebels/Wolverines to 36 wins during his two-year tenure. In addition to coaching at the high school level, Daley has coached with Jacksonville Storm and Pittsburgh Spirit fast pitch organizations and is also a member of the National Fast Pitch Coaches Association.

Daley is also a retired detective from the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police as well as a Non-Commissioned Officer in the United States Army Reserves. He holds a Master's Degree in Leadership from Mountain State University and Bachelor's Degree in Criminal Justice from Point Park University. Daley is currently working on a second Master's Degree from Texas Women's College in Kinesiology with a focus in Coaching.

"I would like to thank President Dr. Nathaniel Glover, Jr., Interim Athletic Director Stanley Cromartie and the entire Tiger community for this opportunity, as I am both honored and humbled to continue my coaching career at Edward Waters College." remarked Daley upon being hired. "I have high expectations of myself and the Tiger softball program and I am excited to get started."

EDWARD WATERS COLLEGE TIGERS SPORTS INFORMATION

Benedict Tigers Announces Three Staff Additions To Athletic Department

COLUMBIA, South Carolina – The Benedict College athletic department has announced three staff additions, said Willie Washington, Director of Athletics.

Joining the Tigers are Bridget Jones as Assistant Athletic Director and Senior Woman Administrator; Tiffani Hall as Head Athletic Trainer; and Michael Ellis as an offensive line coach for the football team.

"We are excited about our new staff joining the Benedict athletic program," Washington said. "I have known Ms. Jones for a long time and she will be a tremendous asset to our athletic program. Miss Hall will lead our athletic training operations and brings a great deal of experience. And we are glad to have Mr. Ellis back on our football staff and will help lift our team to new heights."


Jones is no stranger to Benedict College. Prior to joining the athletic department, she spent 5 ½ years as the Associate Vice President for Student Affairs, 10 years as Director of Community Life and two years as Director of Student Financial Services. For 15 years, she has volunteered as a Special Assistant to the Director of Athletics.

Her responsibilities will include overseeing internal and external financial reporting functions, fundraising and development activities, special projects, and student services. She will also be charged with overseeing the athletic enhancement program, which services over 275 student-athletes and serve as a liaison to various campus and off-campus offices. Ms. Jones will manage all women's sports and assist with the overall operations of the Athletic Department. In this role, she will also strengthen relationships with the NCAA and increase local and state business relations with the Benedict College athletic program.

Jones earned her Bachelor's degree in business with honors from Jackson State University in 1987 and her Master's in business administration (M.B.A.) from Jackson State University in 1995.

Hall joins Benedict after serving at Alabama State University, where she spent two years as an Athletic Trainer and interim Head Athletic Trainer. Prior to that, she worked as an athletic trainer at Eagles Landing Christian Academy in Atlanta, and an assistant athletic trainer at Bethune-Cookman University in Daytona Beach, Fla.

She earned her Bachelor of Science in biology from Morgan State University, then continued her education with a Master of Science in sport injury management from Life University, a Master of Science in athletic training from Florida International University and a Doctor of Business Administration in Healthcare Management (DHA) from California Intercontinental University in Los Angeles.

Ellis joins the football program as an offensive line coach, a position he held at Benedict from 2008-2011. Prior to returning to Benedict, he was an offensive line coach with the Metro City Bounty Hunters. He also served as an offensive line coach at Concordia College in Alabama, and spent five years as an offensive line coach at Alcorn State University, his alma mater. He earned a Bachelor's degree in communications from Alcorn State in 1995 and was a member of the football team, earning first team Sheridan Black College All-American honors in 1994.

COURTESY BENEDICT COLLEGE SPORTS INFORMATION

Libero Dalla Vecchia completes Gold Nuggets' class

NEW ORLEANS — Xavier University of Louisiana completed its 2017 volleyball recruiting class with the Friday announcement that Anna Dalla Vecchia signed an athletic scholarship.

Dalla Vecchia is a 5-foot-7 libero from Vicenza, Italy. She was selected the best libero in her region in 2013 and ranked third nationwide at the Italian Trophy of Regions competition. In 2014-15 and 2016-17 she helped her teams win league championships and earn promotions to higher-ranked leagues.

Dalla Vecchia, who will major in communication studies at XULA, is the Gold Nuggets' seventh signee. All will be freshmen this season.

Previously signed were outside hitters Ariel Bell of White Castle, La., Kayla Black of Magnolia, Texas, and Jaida Dowd of Aurora, Ill., setter Eva Le Guillou of Velizy-Villacoublay, France, middle blocker/right side Vivica Price-Spraggins of Chicago and right side/outside hitter Lauryn Taylor of Sairburn, Ga.

"I'm very excited about our 2017 recruiting class." first-year head coach Pat Kendrick said. "We have a good balance of athleticism and skill. With the strong core of returning players and this new group of student-athletes, I believe this season will be filled with exciting and highly competitive play."

The Gold Nuggets will open the season Aug. 25 in the UM-Dearborn Early Bird at Dearborn, Mich., against Trinity International at 3 p.m. EDT and Madonna at 7 p.m. The home opener will start at 6 p.m. Aug. 29 against Mobile at the Convocation Center. XULA won the last six Gulf Coast Athletic Conference regular-season and tournament championships and earned six consecutive automatic bids during that time to the NAIA National Championship.

2017-18 XULA Volleyball Signees
Name Pos. Ht. Yr.* Hometown High School
Ariel Bell # OH 5-7 Fr. White Castle, La. White Castle
Kayla Black OH 5-9 Fr. Magnolia, Texas St. Pius X
Anna Dalla Vecchia L 5-7 Fr. Vicenza, Italy IIS S.B. Boscardin
Jaida Dowd OH 5-8 Fr. Aurora, Ill. Metea Valley
Eva Le Guillou S 5-9 Fr. Velizy-Villacoublay, France Emmanuel Mounier
Vivica Price-Spraggins MB/RS 5-11 Fr. Chicago, Ill. Whitney Young Magnet
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

Ed Cassiere, Assistant Athletic Director for Communications
XULAgold.com
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Harrier from standout Ohio program signs with Rush


NEW ORLEANS — Xavier University of Louisiana announced Friday the signing of Camren Sewell of Cincinnati to an athletic scholarship for men's cross country and track and field.

Sewell, 5-feet-11 and 150 pounds, competed two seasons apiece in varsity cross country and track for La Salle High School, one of Ohio's top distance programs. Sewell in 2016 helped the Lancers' cross country team finish second in district, qualify for regionals and win the Midwest Catholic Championships. In 2015 he helped the Lancers rank 17th in the final state poll and qualify for regionals.

Sewell's best times for La Salle were 4 minutes, 44 seconds for 1,600 meters and 10:21.27 for the 3,200 in track and field and 16:49.7 for the 5,000 in cross country. He achieved all those times during his senior season.

Sewell made the honor roll multiple times at La Salle and will major in biomedical engineering at XULA. Gold Rush coach Joseph Moses said Sewell will bid strongly to become the team's No. 1 runner this season.

XULA's men and women will open Aug. 25 in the Xavier Big Easy Opener at City Park, about four miles from the XULA campus. The women will run two miles starting at 5:30 p.m., followed by a 5,000-meter men's race at 6.

Ed Cassiere, Assistant Athletic Director for Communications
XULAgold.com
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City Park meet will open schedule for Rush, Nuggets

NEW ORLEANS — Xavier University of Louisiana's men's and women's cross country teams will compete at several familiar venues during 2017 en route to the postseason.

Joseph Moses, beginning his 13th season as head coach, announced Friday the schedule, which will begin Aug. 25 when the Gold Rush and Gold Nuggets play host to the Xavier Big Easy Opener at City Park, about four miles from the XULA campus. The women will run two miles starting at 5:30 p.m., followed by a 5,000-meter men's race at 6.

It will be third time in four years that XULA opens the season at home. The 2016 Big Easy Opener was canceled because of a waterlogged course.

2017 Schedule Pages:  Men   •   Women

XULA's second, third and fourth meets — the Mississippi College Season Opener Sept. 1, the Allstate Sugar Bowl Festival Sept. 9 and the LSU Invitational Sept. 16 — are repeats from last year.

The Sugar Bowl meet venue will be Lafreniere Park in suburban Metairie, La., giving XULA a second local appearance this season.

The Gulf Coast Athletic Conference Championships will be run in late October at Clinton, Miss. — the same site as the Sept. 1 meet. GCAC administration will announce details soon. XULA won the last 10 GCAC men's and women's team championships.

The GCAC team champions will qualify automatically for the NAIA National Championships Nov. 18 at Vancouver, Wash., which will play host to that meet for the fifth time and the first time since 2012.

XULA's returning letterwinners are Carlie Calais, Chinyere Jones, Dionysia Love, Brianna Pace, Taylor Price and Maliya Vaughan on the women's team and Oji Wells, Ammiel Williams and Darrick Williams on the men's. Price, a sophomore from Missouri City, Texas, was a GCAC individual champion in 2016.

Xavier University of Louisiana 2017 Men's and Women's Cross Country Schedule

Friday, Aug. 25
XAVIER BIG EASY OPENER, City Park, 5:30 p.m. women, 6 p.m. men


Friday, Sept. 1
Mississippi College Season Opener, Clinton, Miss., 5 p.m. women, 5:30 p.m. men

Saturday, Sept. 9
Allstate Sugar Bowl Festival, Metairie, La., 7:50 a.m. women, 8:25 a.m. men

Saturday, Sept. 16
LSU Invitational, Baton Rouge, La., 7:30 a.m. women, 8:10 a.m. men

Late October
Gulf Coast Athletic Conference Championships, Clinton, Miss., details TBA

Saturday, Nov. 18
NAIA National Championships, Vancouver, Wash., 10:30 a.m. PST men, 11:45 a.m. PST women


Home meets in BOLD CAPITAL LETTERS      All times are Central except where noted      Schedules are subject to change

Ed Cassiere, Assistant Athletic Director for Communications
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Saturday, August 12, 2017

KSU FOOTBALL | Thorobreds Looking Forward to 2017 Season



FRANKFORT, Kentucky -- Last year, the Thorobreds finished 4-7 overall, and made it to the SIAC Championship Game, where they fell 33-30 to Fort Valley St. University.

This year, they are hoping to make it back to the conference title game, and win it.

KSU head coach John L. Smith, who is entering his second season with the team, says he hopes last year’s loss in the conference title game is used as motivation for this year’s team:

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For FVSU Wildcats’ offense, success is about the right mindset

FORT VALLEY, Georgia -- Demontay Jones is back for the Fort Valley State Wildcats, and there are five other returning starters on the offense.

But even after the Wildcats won the SIAC title in 2016, head coach Kevin Porter isn’t satisfied with his offense. He wants to see more productivity and balance from that unit during the 2017 season, which opens with the Wildcats traveling to West Georgia on Aug. 31.

“Offensively, it’s going to be a challenge,” Porter said. “We want to do a better job of running the football, obviously, but if we can go out and get the right mindset about what we’re trying to do, I think we’ll be OK.”



The Wildcats struggled to run the ball in 2016, averaging just 2.9 yards per carry and 139.1 yards per game. Jamari Clark led the way with 438 yards on 90 carries, while Chauncey Jackson added 304 yards on 95 carries.

Junior offensive lineman Julian Williams is excited about his head coach’s challenge to improve the running game, and Williams thinks his group is up to that challenge.

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Hampton Pirates football looking to bounce back

COURTESY: HAMPTON UNIVERSITY ATHLETICS
HAMPTON, Virginia  -- The Hampton Pirates are trying to turn the corner for their football program. They're about a week into their pre-season practices under head coach, Connell Maynor who's in his 5th season at HU. They were 5-6 in 2016, but had a 5-3 record in the MEAC finishing third. The Pirates are picked to be 5th in pre-season polls in the conference. "You have to use it as fuel", Maynor says.

The Pirates come into 2017 as a team that's stout on defense. Among the players returning, senior safety, Brendan Cole who will help lead a squad that was second in total defense in the conference last season. "We like it when it's all on us", he says. They may have to shoulder more, while the offense tries to find its way. They're young in spots that includes wide receiver with the loss of Twarn Mixon and Rashawn Proctor to graduation.

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