Saturday, August 31, 2013

FAMU's New band director retires 'drum major' title

Norfolk State University Spartan Sports Zone Launched

FAMU football: Cash makes immediate impression for Rattlers

TALLAHASSEE, Florida  -- Keonte Cash, the only freshman starter on FAMU’s football team, has been making an impression on coaches long before taking his first rep.

He was just a middle school kid who spent his spare time participating in dramatic plays or tinkering with baseball, when the coaching staff at Miami Jesuit called him to try out for the junior varsity team. Before his freshman season was over, he was promoted to varsity on the offensive line.

He started every game. What he did at Jesuit was so impressive, that his former coach now use his highlight film as a teaching tool.

“He is the best lineman we’ve ever had and I’ve been the head coach for 30 years,” said Richard Stuart. “He is a very smart young man; intelligent.


XU Gold Nuggets win in 4, will play for tourney championship

HOUSTON — For the Xavier University of Louisiana women's volleyball program, victories after first-set losses have been rare. But that trend has improved lately.
The Gold Nuggets defeated Columbia (S.C.) 25-27, 25-20, 25-20, 25-15 on Saturday morning for their third victory in as many matches at the UST Labor Day Tournament. Xavier is 10-73 all-time when losing the first set but has two such victories in the past five matches.
Taylor Reuther's sixth-consecutive double-double — 15 kills and 14 digs — Moira Kirk's 11 kills and reserve Claudia Haywood's seven kills and three blocks in two sets helped propel Xavier (5-2) into a 4 p.m. championship match later in the day against Montana Tech, the tournament's other 3-0 team.
The Nuggets were a roller coaster in the opening set, turning a 4-1 deficit into a 15-10 lead, then falling behind 21-19 before rallying again for a 25-24 advantage after a CeCe Williams kill. But Columbia prevailed, closing the set with three consecutive kills.
Xavier finally found some momentum late in the second set, with Haywood and Kirk collecting three kills apiece to pull the Nuggets out of a 16-14 hole and even the match. An 8-2 run helped Xavier pull away in the third set, and 8-1 and 10-2 runs in the fourth clinched the Nuggets' 21st victory in their last 22 neutral-site matches, a streak which began in 2011.
Reuther hit .159, her lowest since the season opener, but also served four aces, the most in a match by an XU player this season. Kirk hit .370, and Haywood — who sat out both Friday matches due to injury — hit a season-best .462 in 13 attempts.
Xavier produced 74 digs for the second consecutive match. Jodi Chatters had 20 to reach 60 for the tournament, Franziska Pirkl had 12 and Chinedu Echebelem nine. Pirkl had 32 assists in her second consecutive double-double and fourth of the season.
The Nuggets hit .208 — .286 in the final two sets — and served a season-high 10 aces. Echebelem had three aces to equal her career high. Columbia (0-4) served four aces, but only one in the final three sets.
By Ed Cassiere, Sports Information Director

Nuggets beat Loyola for first time ever, go 2-0 in Houston

HOUSTON, Texas  -- Xavier University of Louisiana beat city rival Loyola in women's volleyball for the first time ever and defeated the host school, St. Thomas, on Friday in the UST Labor Day Tournament.

The Gold Nuggets (4-2) defeated Loyola 25-13, 25-16, 25-16 and St. Thomas 25-19, 25-18, 22-25, 25-21.

Box scores:  Loyola    St. Thomas
Taylor Reuther extended her double-double streak to five with 12 kills and 16 digs against Loyola and 23 kills, a career best, and 14 digs against St. Thomas. Chinedu Echebelem had 10 kills, eight digs and season bests of three aces and a .450 hitting percentage against Loyola and 13 kills, a season high, and seven digs against St. Thomas. Jodi Chatters had 40 digs in the two matches, 23 against St. Thomas. Kerris Crier, playing collegiately in her hometown for the first time, had a career-high-tying nine kills and hit .471 against St. Thomas.

"We found some fluidity and continuity in terms of court chemistry," said first-year XU head coach Hannah Lawing, whose team hit better than .300 in both matches. "Our hitters are connecting better with our setters, and our defensive system was better executed than it was last weekend. We kept pressure on our opponents with our serves. Everybody on the bench was ready to go in when we needed them.

"Our hitters mixed up their shots really well, finding holes on the other side of the court and making adjustments to each team."

Loyola entered the tournament with an 11-0 series advantage against Xavier, including two victories a year ago.

"It felt good to win against a traditionally good program," Lawing said. "It was a relief not only to win the match but also to be in control the entire time."

The Gold Nuggets never trailed in any of their sets against Loyola and closed the first two sets with 7-1 runs. Consecutive kills by Jodi Hill, Reuther and Moira Kirk ended the match.

St. Thomas scored the final four points of the third set to extend the match and led 16-14 in the fourth after overcoming a 9-4 Xavier advantage. But four St. Thomas errors, four Reuther kills and a Darian Harris ace helped the Nuggets escape with their fourth win in their last five matches and their first this season on an opponent's court.

Xavier will play Saturday, the second and final day of the tournament, at 10 a.m. against Columbia (S.C.) and 4 p.m. against Montana Tech. Xavier's home opener will start at 1 p.m. on Sept. 14 against Voorhees in the Convocation Center.

By Ed Cassiere, Sports Information Director

Victories for XU Rush and Jackson, school record for Fakler

Catherine Fakler
CLINTON, Mississippi — Xavier University of Louisiana scored team and individual men's victories Friday and broke a women's school record in its first cross country meet of the 2013 season, the Mississippi College Opener at Choctaw Trails Course.
The Gold Rush scored 54 points to win the men's championship by 14 points over runner-up Mississippi College, and XU junior Kwame Jackson won the 5,000-meter race in 16 minutes, 34 seconds. It was Jackson's second collegiate victory and his first since winning the 2011 Gulf Coast Athletic Conference title on this same course.

Junior Catherine Fakler was third in the women's race, running a school-record 15:34 for 4,000 meters. Teammate Zahri Jackson, who did not compete because of injury, set the previous mark of 16:27.58 two years ago in this same meet. The Gold Nuggets were third in team scoring with 73 points, trailing Blue Mountain (34) and Millsaps (54).
Results:  Men    Women

Info for students interested in joining the 2013-14 Gold Star Dance Team.  PDF files:  workshop    auditions

The team championship was the 19th in the modern era of the XU men's program, the 11th in the regular season and the first in a season opener since 2007. Jackson, who led a field of 49 runners, scored the first regular-season victory by a Gold Rush runner since Matt Pieri in 2010.
"I told our guys in the huddle just before we started that they needed to win this meet. There was no reason why they shouldn't," said ninth-year XU coach Joseph Moses. "Kwame came out relaxed and confident and was running smooth. When he came out those of woods on the back of the course for that final uphill stretch, he was running by himself."
Jackson won by 10 seconds over runner-up Ryan Campbell, a freshman from Mississippi College.
Both Gold Rush newcomers finished in the top 10. Sophomore Brent Kitto, running in his first cross country meet since transferring from Louisiana Tech after the 2011 season, placed third in 16:48. Freshman Christopher August was ninth in 17:24.
Also finishing for Xavier were David Holobowicz (12th place, 17:40), Charles Shaw (29th, 18:48) and Aaron Yarmush (31st, 18:57). Holobowicz posted his best collegiate time at this distance.
Former Belhaven and Carson-Newman runner Hannah Reese, running unattached, was the top female finisher. Blue Mountain's Kelsea Posadas was second.
Mississippi College was unable to supply official times for all the women. Xavier's Donyé Coleman was 12th in 17:29, followed by Hannah Finnegan (16th place, 17:54), Reeka Belton (18th, 18:00), Danielle Rogers (29th, 19:17) and Hali Yarmush (30th, 19:19). Coleman's finish was her second highest in a regular-season collegiate meet. Belton and Rogers are freshmen.
"Catherine stepped up and ran a good race," Moses said. "It was great to see Donyé, a senior, step up and post a high finish. But I thought our women could've won this meet, too, even though we weren't at full strength. We need to redeem ourselves next week."
Both XU teams will compete Sept. 7 — one week from Saturday — in the Loyola Wolf Pack Invitational at Lafreniere Park in Metairie, La., a New Orleans suburb. Both collegiate races will be 5,000 meters, with the women starting at 7:50 a.m. and the men at 8:25. It will be the second of five regular-season meets for Xavier and its only local appearance of 2013.

By Ed Cassiere, Sports Information Director

WSSU solid in final scrimmage

WINSTON-SALEM, North Carolina -- Winston-Salem State put the finishing touches on preseason camp with a controlled scrimmage Thursday morning.

With a week left before the Sept. 5 opener at UNC Pembroke, Coach Connell Maynor wanted to see his offense and defense against each other once more, and he liked what he saw.

"The biggest thing is we didn’t get anybody hurt,” said Maynor, who sat several starters. “We wanted everybody to get up after every play, and that’s what happened. We looked pretty good, and we moved the ball a little better today.”

With classes in session, the Rams have gone back to 6 a.m. practices — a staple since Maynor arrived in 2010. “We used to practice at 5 a.m.,” one veteran said, “so 6 a.m. is a little better.”


MEAC SWAC Challenge: Competing Teams Legends

DwightFloydMississippi Valley State University vs. Florida A&M University
September 1, 2013
11:45 A.M. EST
Orlando, Florida Citrus Bowl/TV: ESPN

TALLAHASSEE, Florida  -- When two historically black colleges and universities meet, whether it is a political science conference, or a sporting event, there is a story behind the story. In the case of the MEAC SWAC Challenge the events leading up to the game and the game itself are of small significance in comparison to what these schools represent.

On the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington I could easily highlight the roles of the Mississippi Valley State University and Florida A&M University in the resistance movement against segregation and oppression. Though this article is about sports history, it nonetheless has ties to the resistance movement. It was author and University of Michigan’s Professor Emeritus Harold Cruse who in “The Crisis of the Intellectual Negro” wrote many years ago about black America’s struggle with self-identity. Thus, it is not just entertaining to learn about black sports history, it is most important to black America in general that we connect with our past legends and heroes born of our own making.


Whitney Houston - "I Love The Lord" according to The Mad Violinist...

Southern University Human Jukebox and Dancing Dolls at Houston 9/30 (Updated)


Santiago Sparks Army To 28-12 Season-Opening Win Over Morgan State Bears

WEST POINT, New York  -- Making just his second career start, junior Angel Santiago combined for 221 total yards of offense to lead the Army football team to a 28-12 victory over visiting Morgan State Friday night under the lights at Michie Stadium. Santiago threw for 101 yards and one touchdown while tacking on a game-high 120 yards on the ground and three scores to lead the Black Knights to their first season-opening win since 2010.

Santiago was one of two Army (1-0) players to eclipse the 100-yard mark on the ground as junior Larry Dixon tallied 107 yards, reaching the century mark for the fifth time in his career. Freshman Xavier Moss led the receiving corps with a pair of catches en route to a 75-yard showing. Junior Chevaughn Lawrence also caught a pair of passes, including an 18-yard touchdown toss from Santiago in the early goings of the second quarter.

Final Stats |  Quotes |  Notes |  Photo Gallery  |  Photo Gallery  Watch Recap
Army 28, MSU 12 Get Acrobat Reader

On the defensive side of the ball, junior Geoffrey Bacon and sophomore Alex Meier tallied career highs in tackles, recording 16 and 11, respectively. Senior Kyle Maxwell, who entered the game without a career sack, finished the night with a pair of quarterback take-downs.

Santiago and the Army offense came out firing, marching 95 yards downfield in its first possession to score midway through the first quarter. The possession was bookended by Santiago connecting with Moss for a 24-yard gain before the quarterback found paydirt on a 33-yard scramble to the end zone. Santiago punched in his second score of the game with 36 seconds remaining in the first stanza, en- route to a 168-yard offensive quarter for the Black Knights while Morgan State (0-1) sputtered to gain just 61 yards.

Following Lawrence's TD reception to push Army's lead to 21-0 early in the second quarter, the Bears cracked the scoring column with time winding down in the half. Junior quarterback Robert Council scored on a one-yard run for MSU, but the first of two failed extra-point attempts kept Army's lead at 21-6 heading into intermission.

Santiago would add one more score during the Black Knights' first possession of the second half to extend the lead to 28-6, before MSU closed out the game scoring with Council finding senior Chris Flowers for a 22-yard score with eight minutes remaining in the third.

Council ended the night with 89 yards of passing and 47 yards rushing, while Lamont Brown led the Bears' ground game with 75 net yards. Flowers had two receptions for 37 yards. MSU totaled 301 yards of offense to Army's 396.

The Black Knights played a blemish-free game, recording zero turnovers and zero penalties, a feat last accomplished in Army's 2010 Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl win over SMU on Dec. 30, 2010. Conversely, MSU was hamstringed by nine penalties resulting in a loss of 65 yards.

Army will hit the road for Game 2 of the 2013 season when the Black Knights travel to Muncie, Ind., to face Ball State on Sept. 7. Kickoff against the Cardinals is slated for noon at Scheumann Stadium. BSU defeated Illinois State, 51-28, in its season opener on Thursday night and earned a 30-22 win at Michie Stadium in the 2012 meeting with Army.

The MSU Bears will continue its road swing when they return to action next Saturday against Robert Morris.  The game is set for a noon kickoff on September 7 at Joe Walton Stadium. It will mark the second meeting between Morgan State and Robert Morris since 2011. The Bears won the matchup 13-12 at Hughes Stadium. 

Note:  NFL Hall of Famer and Morgan State great Willie Lanier was in attendance.  This game was also the first night game at Michie Stadium since 2009.


Southern defense tries but falters against Houston

HOUSTON, Texas — With six minutes left in the first half Friday, Southern’s defense stood with its back 15 yards from the end zone.

Houston was threatening again. A play earlier, the Cougars’ No. 2 quarterback, John O’Korn, misfired and sailed a throw over the head of receiver Deonte Greenberry.

At that point, the Jaguars only trailed 13-6. Had they held their Football Bowl Subdivision opponent to a field goal, they might have stemmed momentum and allowed the Southern offense to cobble together a rally.

It failed. Running back Ryan Jackson cut once, hit a backside hole on a power play and scampered into the end zone: Houston 20, Southern 6.

One possession later, the Cougars recoverd a muffed punt at the Jaguars 12 and converted it into a score on a 10-yard touchdown pass. It took 55 seconds. And Houston’s next two scoring drives each needed less than 60 seconds to turn a reasonable deficit into a rout by the end of the third quarter at Reliant Stadium.

Yet, the Jaguars’ 3-4 scheme tried to stiffen early.


Video: Dawson Odums said Jaguars must find positives in Houston loss

Turnovers, mistakes, penalties doom Southern

HOUSTON — Near the end of the first quarter against the University of Houston, the Southern sideline erupted after a leaping 45-yard catch by Samuel Altman. The Jaguars were in the red zone and threatening to draw within three points. Two plays later, freshman running back Kylum Favorite fumbled that momentum away.

Midway through the second quarter, a big stop on defense forced the Cougars to punt the ball back to a seemingly re-energized Jaguars team. Southern fumbled away that opportunity as well. The ball hit Marquon Webster in the back, and the Cougars recovered at the SU 12.

Add in a third fumble, an interception and 10 penalties for 91 yards and the Jaguars made things a lot more difficult on themselves in a 62-13 loss to the Cougars on Friday night at Reliant Stadium.


MVSU Delta Devils and FAMU Rattlers "Wobble"&"Cupid Shuffle" at MEAC/SWAC Challenge

Southern tripped up from the start in its season opener

HOUSTON, Texas  --  Dawson Odums took over as Southern’s head coach after a near-disastrous 0-2 start last season.

He provided discipline and stability that yielded a more respectable team during a 4-5 finish, leading to a two-year contract for him and increased optimism entering his first full season. The Jaguars were picked to finish second in the Southwestern Athletic Conference West Division, their highest projection in five seasons.

Southern might yet be a SWAC contender, but its season-opening performance did little to justify the optimism. The Jaguars committed four turnovers and several debilitating penalties and mostly couldn’t get out of their own way in a 62-13 loss to Houston on Friday in Reliant Stadium.

“You can’t give the ball away, especially against a good Division I team,” Odums said. “They’re going to capitalize with a short field. They had four (scoring) drives of (fewer than) 50 yards.”

Daniel Spencer had 102 yards and two touchdowns receiving and ran for ...


Southern’s Dray Joseph stars but gets little help

HOUSTON — Southern quarterback Dray Joseph surveyed the landscape of scrambling bodies and managed to freeze Houston linebacker Austin Wilson. That split second created a seam that let Joseph fire a dart to receiver Samuel Altman for a 19-yard touchdown that drew the Jaguars within seven points in the second quarter Friday night at Reliant Stadium — a fleeting highlight in a 62-13 season-opening loss.

Faith in Joseph’s left arm shouldn’t waver, though. The senior, a preseason All-Southwestern Athletic Conference pick, reeled off 15 consecutive completions after misfiring on his first throw and finished with 268 yards and two touchdowns on 27-of-36 passing.

“I did a great job controlling my energy,” said Joseph, who started the night 15 of 16 for 163 yards. “I didn’t want to be too excited and overthrow balls, and I just came out and played an efficient game.”

Acting as the leader for the Southern offense isn’t new for the senior, who led the conference in passing last season.

ESPN3 Video Highlights


Morgan State drops its football season opener at Army, 28-12

WEST POINT, New York  --  In just his second start as Army's quarterback, junior Angel Santiago rushed for 116 yards, passed for 101 yards and accounted for all four touchdowns in the Black Knights' 28-12 win over Morgan State Friday night before 24,245 at Michie Stadium.

Santiago, a prep star from San Bernadino, Calif., rushed for three touchdowns and passed for another.

The 5-11, 188-pound signal-caller was the third-string quarterback in 2011 and 2012, carrying the ball just 53 times in two seasons. A.J. Schurr was in line to replace four-year starter Trent Steelman as the next quarterback for the Black Knights, but a good spring campaign vaulted Santiago ahead of him.

While Steelman was the focus of Army's intricate triple offense that paced the county in rushing yardage in 2011 and 2012, Santiago provides coach Rich Ellerson with a pocket passer capable of throwing the long ball.

Only twice did Army pass for over 100 yards in a game in 2012.

Against Morgan State, Santiago was ...


Friday, August 30, 2013

Jackson State Sonic Boom of the South at Tulane 8/29/13


COURTESY MarchingsportHD

Bulldog buzz: Alabama A&M at Grambling

Alabama A&M vs. Grambling

WHAT: Alabama A&M at Grambling State
WHEN: 6 p.m. Saturday
WHERE: Eddie Robinson Stadium, Grambling, La.

THIS GAME WILL DETERMINE: Which team will get a head-start in the Southwest Athletic Conference race, though A&M and Grambling are in opposite divisions of the SWAC. Grambling is trying to bounce back from a winless conference record in 2012, after having won the league title over A&M in 2011.The early-season meeting will be a stern test for both teams, which have numerous questions marks, but the loser will have time to recover and still contend for the title.

1. Defensive unpredictability. Grambling State has a new coordinator in former NFL linebacker Dennis "Dirt" Winston, who was at Pine Bluff last season. Head coach Doug Williams has been coy about what scheme - or schemes - Winston will employ and it's a mystery to A&M as well.
2. Alabama A&M offensive mistakes. The Bulldogs have a new quarterback in Brandon Wells, a new tailback and four new starters on the offensive line. It is bound to make mistakes, especially as it can't game-plan as effectively against Grambling's defense. How efficiently and smoothly Wells and the offense shrug off plays that have negative yardage or have major mistakes - like a golfer forgetting how he three-putted before going onto the next tee - will determine much of A&M's early success this year.


Doug Williams' return as Grambling coach prompted by loyalty -- and by family (Mark McCarter column)

GRAMBLING, Louisiana - There are a couple of simple reasons why Doug Williams will be on the Grambling State sideline Saturday night, beginning his ninth season as its head coach - or the third season in Doug Williams Coaching Career 2.0, as it were.

"Love. Loyalty," Williams says.

Then he adds, "I am Grambling."

That's not a pretentious statement. That's just how deep in his soul this historic university and football program runs.

Of course, to many, Doug Williams IS Grambling, almost as much as coach Eddie Robinson, the legend whose name adorns the football stadium and whose memory remains cherished and deified. Williams played quarterback at Grambling, then went to the National Football League. He was the history making Washington Redskins' QB in 1987, the first black starting quarterback to start a Super Bowl.

The night before the game, his roommate was Anthony Jones.


Alabama State coach Reggie Barlow discusses season opener against Jacksonville State

MONTGOMERY, Alabama  -- Alabama State faces Jacksonville State in its season and home opener Saturday at 5 p.m.
It'll be the first career start for Hornets quarterback third-year junior Daniel Duhart and another shot for ASU (7-4) to capture its first win in the its first victory its brand new, $62-million stadium after Division II Tuskegee defeated the Hornets in the 89th Annual Turkey Day Classic last season. 
Here what coach Reggie Barlow had to say about ...


MEAC SWAC Challenge: Who is In Shape to Win?

dafnewORLANDO, Florida  --  Once upon a time there was a football team that literally caught more cramps during the game than they did passes. In fact, the quarterback cramped so badly fans thought he was experiencing a convulsion.

At the beginning of fall camp coaches are hoping for hot weather. The premise is that teams in the south generally have an advantage over other teams because they consistently practice in the heat and play in the heat. Building stamina under those conditions should payoff in the final quarter. With all of the rain in Tallahassee this summer the heat may be more of an advantage for Mississippi Valley State except that the forecasters predict a 30% chance of rain in Orlando on Sunday.

“Where’s the heat man?”

Should it rain the game could turn into a defensive battle much like the one between Southern and Mississippi Valley State last year. In that game MVSU depended on the run and a stubborn defense to shock Southern and take a win. It wasn’t the running back alone though that made the difference, it was the offensive line. Keep in mind that Southern beat FAMU last year.


Ex-Westover star Greene in the mix in ASU Rams backfield

ALBANY, Georgia — In his first stint as offensive coordinator at Albany State from 2009-10, Steve Smith led two different quarterbacks to career years and conference Player of the Year honors.
2013, however, might be the year of the running backs.
Smith was reluctant to name a starter before practice Tuesday, but he did say that a group of rushers will get significant carries this season, including freshman Dalviness Greene, a Westover grad and former Herald Dynamite Dozen selection who started during Saturday’s intrasquad scrimmage.
Greene, who is fighting for playing time with senior Kareem Hess, junior Adrian Alexander and Valdosta State transfer Phillip Moore, caught the eyes of head coach Mike White with his performance in the scrimmage.
“He had a couple of runs where he looked pretty good,” White said. “I saw a rushing attack (Saturday) that was really physical.”

Lincoln U of Missouri & CFL Legend Leo Lewis Passes Away

Leo Lewis (1953)
 (Lincoln University Athletic Archives)
JEFFERSON CITY, Missouri  --  Legendary Lincoln running back Leo Lewis, who helped the Blue Tigers win 27 games and post back-to-back undefeated seasons in the early 1950's, passed away on Friday (Aug. 30).

Lewis, who owns four of Lincoln's top six single-season rushing marks, carried the ball 623 times for 4,457 yards and 64 touchdowns during his four-year LU career, with all three of those marks still standing as program records. Nicknamed "The Lincoln Locomotive," Lewis played for Lincoln from 1951-1954, rushing for over 1,100 yards three times and finishing with 384 career points. Lewis scored four touchdowns in a game on four occasions, making him the only Blue Tiger to ever accomplish that feat multiple times, and set a program record with 22 touchdowns in the 1953 campaign.

From 1951-1954, Lincoln posted four consecutive winning seasons, including posting identical 8-0-1 records during the 1952 and 1953 campaigns. In 1952, Lincoln outscored opponents, 267-74, and finished the year ranked No. 2 in the country by the Pittsburgh Courier. The Blue Tigers had similar success in 1953, outscoring opponents by a total of 266-67 en route to a second-straight unbeaten season. This success was due in large part to the unstoppable running ability of Lewis, who broke free for 1,239 yards in 1952 and 1,230 yards in 1953. Those marks remain the top-two ever by an LU back, and both came in nine-game seasons.

Lewis began his LU career in 1951, rushing for 1,164 yards and helping to create one of the greatest turn-arounds in program history. After a 1-7 in 1950 in which Lincoln scored just 52 points, the Blue Tigers, on the strength of Lewis' running, exploded for 290 points in 1951 while going 7-2. Lewis later closed his prolific career in 1954, rushing for 824 yards in an eight-game season that the Blue Tigers finished with a 4-3-1 record.

The holder of nearly every major Lincoln rushing record, Lewis holds the single season mark for yards per carry (5.9, 1952) and the record for yards in a single game (245). Lewis joins Lemar Parrish as the only two Lincoln football players to have their jerseys retired, as Lewis' No. 30 uniform was retired by the athletic department in 2000.

Lewis earned a Bachelor of Science degree in 1955 and immediately went on to play for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers of the Canadian Football League until 1965. He later returned to Lincoln to serve as the team's head football coach from 1973-1975, leading the Blue Tigers to 12 victories.

Lewis also served as the head golf coach and the head women's basketball coach at LU and, at one point, served as the school's interim athletic director. Lewis became the most successful women's basketball coach in Blue Tiger history, leading Lincoln to six double-digit win seasons in the early 1980s including a program-best 15 wins in 1984-85. Lewis finished his coaching career in 1993 with 102 career victories.

Lewis was inducted into the Lincoln Athletic Hall of Fame in 2008. This October, he will be joined by many of his teammates, as the 1952 and 1953 Lincoln football teams will also be enshrined in the hall of fame.

By Dan Carr, Assistant AD for Media Relations

Leo Lewis, Athlete/Football Inducted 2005 (Reprint)

"The Great" Leo Lewis
The Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame &
Museum Inductee (2005)
WINNIPEG, MANITOBA, Canada -- Of the thousands of men who have carried the ball in the Canadian Football League, only five had run for more yards than the great Leo Lewis at the time of his induction.  Even though his career ended nearly forty years ago, the “Lincoln Locomotive” still ranked sixth all time in CFL rushing with 8,861 yards.  His astonishing 6.6 yards per carry was the best ever among CFL backs.

Born in Des Moines, Iowa, he moved with his family to St. Paul as an infant.  He played his college football at the University of Lincoln, in Jefferson City, Missouri before coming to Canada in 1955 and making himself into a legend.  Yet for all his accomplishments he retained his modesty.

“Sixth all time?” he said with genuine surprise.  “I thought I’d be about twenty something by now.”

Even in his days as a player Lewis was less concerned with his own numbers than in the big picture.

“I wasn’t too interested in individual glory.  I was more interested in team glory.  If what I did helped us win then it was important.  If I had a great game and we lost it (the individual glory) wasn’t important to me.”

Leo Lewis joined the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in 1955.  After missing the ’56 season with an ankle injury, he embarked on a nine-year journey through CFL defences.  By the time he was through, he ranked third all time in rushing yardage and when he retired was the League’s all time leader in kickoff return yardage.  He stood fourth on that list with a stunning 29.1 yard average per return.  He also knew how to find the end zone, scoring seventy-five career touchdowns.

A six-time Western All Star, he was named to the All Canadian All Star team in 1962.  Not surprisingly, he receives the highest praise from those who knew him best.

“He was a quarterback’s best friend” says former Blue Bomber great Ken Ploen.  “It didn’t matter what you asked him to do he’d do it to the best of his ability.  He was there all the time.  He never complained.  He was a true professional.”

Lewis was perhaps the most exciting player of his time; dashing and darting, running outside and cutting back in.

“He was the best football player we ever had” according to veteran sports writer Jack Matheson.  “I liked everything Leo did.”

After a knee injury finished his career in 1966, Lewis returned to the University of Lincoln where he spent more than thirty years, coaching and teaching.

“I really enjoyed Winnipeg.  I enjoyed the people.  They made me feel like I was home.”                 

Leo Lewis helped to create one of the CFL’s great dynasties as the Bombers captured four Grey Cups in a five-year span. He is a member of the Canadian Football Hall of Fame and the U. S. Collegiate Hall of Fame, and was selected as one of the top 20 All-Time Blue Bombers in 2005.


The Talk of the FCS: Towson football team basks in upset win over UConn

The MEAC has two opportunities to "Shock the World" with the FBS giant killer Tigers.  Can the Hornets and Eagles pull off the upset?  It's possible!

Sat., Sept. 7, Holy Cross AWAY, Worchester, Mass., 1:00 p.m.
Sat., Sept. 14, Delaware State, HOME, Minnegan Field at Johnny Unitas Stadium, 7:30 p.m.
Sat., Sept. 21, North Carolina Central, AWAY, Durham, N.C., 2:00 pm


Lincoln Blue Tigers attempts improvement in tough MIAA

JEFFERSON CITY, Missouri  -- Mike Jones and the Lincoln Blue Tigers face an uphill battle. 

The challenge consists of turning around a long-struggling football program in the most unforgiving football conference in NCAA Division II — the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association.

Often referred to as the SEC of Division II, the comparison isn’t all that far off. While the MIAA can’t match the SEC’s seven national titles in a row, it does boast an impressive resume — seven championship-game appearances in the past nine years, including two titles (Pittsburg State in 2011 and Northwest Missouri State in 2009). Three MIAA teams are ranked in the national preseason poll, including two in the top six, and three more are receiving votes.

Lincoln, on the other hand, has gone 1-10 in both of the past two seasons, winning just one conference game in that span and hasn’t had a winning season since 1972.

So uphill battle might be putting it lightly.

“It’s a tough challenge,” Jones said. “We’re playing catch-up, we’ve been playing catch-up. I was talking to a coach last year who said, ‘Coach, you’re doing a good job.’ That’s fine, but when everybody’s starting on the goal line and going to the other goal line, but we’re at the 50 and you’re at the other goal line, we’re still a long way from you. We’re a little closer to the goal line, but we still have a lot of work to do.

“We still have to change some philosophies and mentalities on the team, but it’s getting in the right direction.”


TSU to Open Season Versus Bethune-Cookman in JMC


NASHVILLE, Tennessee  -- On Sunday, Big Blue takes on Bethune-Cookman for the 15th annual John Merritt Classic at 7 p.m. at LP Field.
The Tigers return 18 starters from last year’s 8-3 team including 11 on the defensive side of the ball.
However, the team’s biggest question mark will be at quarterback where freshman Ronald Butler will make his first start of his career. Butler won the job this fall when he beat out senior Holt Claiborne and JUCO transfer Lamar McKnight.
The good news for Butler is that he will have the luxury of throwing to junior tight end A.C. Leonard who is a preseason All-American by a handful of publications. Last year, Leonard led all OVC tight ends and underclassmen in receiving yards (733). He also hauled in six touchdown passes as a sophomore.
The squad will also break in a new starting running back Trabis Ward left the program at the conclusion of last season. Ward lead the conference in rushing attempts (309) yards (1,422) and touchdowns (15) in 2012. Matching Ward’s production might be difficult for one player to do, so the team will likely turn to both Telvin Hooks and Adam Davenport to carry the load. Hooks rushed 75 times last year for 425 yards for an astounding 5.7 yards per carry average. 2013 will be Davenport’s first year at Tennessee State after transferring from the Naval Academy.
On defense, the Tennessee State will return all 11 starters from a defensive squad that led the OVC in total defense in 2012 (361 y/pg). Second Team All-OVC selection Nick Thrasher will once again captain the defense from the middle linebacker position, a year removed from leading the squad with 105 stops and 9.0 tackles for loss.
The secondary is highlighted by First Team All-OVC cornerback Stephen Godbolt III and Second Team selection safety Daniel Fitzpatrick who combined for 106 tackles and seven interceptions- six by Godbolt. Even with retuning all 11 starters, the Tigers’ defense still only has seven seniors listed on the two-deep depth chart.
The Tigers’ opponent in the JMC will be the defending MEAC Champions and preseason No. 1 ranked HBCU team, Bethune-Cookman. The Wildcats finished 9-3 last season including a 21-14 loss to TSU in Daytona Beach.
B-CU returns 13 starters from 2012 including its leading rusher, passer, receiver and tackler.
Isidore Jackson will enter his senior season as the Wildcat’s go-to-guy on the ground, a year removed from rushing for 1,069 yards on 191 attempts for a 5.6 average. Jackson was also the leader in all-purpose yards (1,217) and scoring (72 points).
Handing Jackson the ball will be junior Quentin Williams who rushed for 635 yards, himself, in B-CU’s spread offense. Williams’s main duty last season was to throw the ball and he performed well, tossing 11 scores compared to just two interceptions. Eddie Poole was on the receiving end on most of Williams’s passes, leading the team in receptions (32), yards (439), and touchdowns (5).
On defense, Jarkevis Fields will return after compiling 103 tackles from the linebacker position a year ago.
TSU will hope to improve to 11-4 in JMC games and 7-1 against B-CU when the teams kick off the 2013 season at 7 p.m.

College football preview: Morgan State at Army

Morgan State (0-0) @ Army (0-0)
When: Friday, 7 p.m.
Site: Mitchie Stadium, West Point, N.Y.
Series: First meeting

What's at stake: Under coach Donald Hill-Eley, Morgan State is 14-20 against nonconference opponents, but 6-6 in season openers. But the Bears finished last season on a dubious six-game losing streak during which they were outscored, 154-93. That ending left a bad taste in the mouths of the players and coaches, but this contest marks the beginning of four consecutive games away from Hughes Stadium and eight of 12 contests on the road. Morgan State is expected to unveil its spread attack offense against Army, which attempts to run as many as six players into open field and force the defense to account for each player. That puts the onus on junior quarterbacks Seth Higgins (1,111 yards and nine touchdowns) and Robert Council (1,115 yards and five touchdowns, 302 rushing yards and three touchdowns) to run the offense and take advantage of opportunities. The Black Knights are trying to bounce back from back-to-back sub-.500 campaigns capped by a 2-10 record in 2012.

Key matchup: Despite Army's troubles a year ago, the offense boasted the nation's most productive run unit, averaging 369.8 yards. Army could be just as effective thanks to the return of senior tailback Raymond Maples (1,215 yards in 2012, which is the fifth-highest single-season mark in school history), junior fullback Larry Dixon (839 yards), and a wealth of depth. That figures to be a huge challenge for a Morgan State defense that surrendered an average of 177.7 yards and 21 rushing touchdowns last year. Redshirt sophomore nose tackle Demarco Bisbee registered 7½ tackles for loss and 3½ sacks last fall.


Southern ready for Dawson Odums’ first season opener


HOUSTON, Texas  --  At the request of coach Dawson Odums, members of the Southern football squad attended services at New Hope Baptist Church this Sunday.

“They invited us to attend,” Odums said. “We are a community football team, and we want the community to know that they can be a part of what’s going on here. We loved being there, and I thank the church for having our football team there.”

While not considered mandatory, the majority of the team attended the service.

“It was a relaxed environment,” quarterback Dray Joseph said. “It was a team-bonding experience. It was a terrific experience for the team.”

Could it be the first of many in Odums’ first full season as head coach?

As Friday night’s game at Houston arrives, Odums gets his first chance to show what he can do after having the interim tag removed from his title this past winter, when he signed a two-year contract.

But this is not the first time in Odums’ career that he has gone from interim to head coach.


Army Hosts Morgan State In 2013 Debut

WEST POINT, New York  -- Army opens its 124th season of competition Friday night against the Morgan State Bears. Kickoff is set for 7:06 p.m. and will be broadcast live by CBS Sports Network.

It is the first time the two teams have met on the football field. The Black Knights are starting a season at home for the first time since facing Temple in 2008. That game was played on a Friday night as well, marking the earliest game in Army football history (Aug. 29). Tonight’s contest is just the second time Army has taken the field prior to September.

The Black Knights return 58 letterwinners from last season, including 14 starters. The Army offense, coming off Academy-record performances in both rushing yards and total offense, will have someone other than Trent Steelman under center in the season opener for the first time since 2008. Junior Angel Santiago will take the first snap, but head coach Rich Ellerson has emphasized that both Santiago and sophomore A.J. Schurr could see action against the Bears.
No matter who is under center, the Black Knights’ rushing game should remain formidable. Army has led the nation in rushing the last two seasons and returns six of its top eight rushers from 2012. Senior Raymond Maples will be on top of opponents’ scouting reports this season. Maples has rushed for more than 1,000 yards in each of the last two seasons, including 1,215 during his junior season. Junior fullback Larry Dixon is also back after posting 839 yards and six touchdowns. Junior Terry Baggett is healthy after missing most of last season with a knee injury. Baggett was averaging nearly nine yards per carry on 16 attempts before his injury.
Defensively, Army returns three of its top five tacklers, including junior Geoffery Bacon. Bacon racked up 136 tackles last season, the ninth-highest total in Academy history. Bacon produced perhaps the biggest story of the offseason with his move from mike linebacker to free safety. He will make his first start at his new position tonight against the Bears. Sophomore Alex Meier moved to the middle after starting most of last season at rover. Junior Robert Kough is back anchoring the defensive line after recording 9.5 tackles for loss as a yearling.

Army owns a sterling 93-27-3 record in its previous 123 season-opening games (.768). The Black Knights’ have split their last four season openers after suffering a 12-year drought from 1997-2008. Army started 0-1 in 12 straight seasons from 1997-2008. Army head coach Rich Ellerson is 6-7 in season openers in his previous 13 years as a head coach.

Since the Division I ranks split in 1978, the Black Knights have played 63 games against the Football Championship Subdivision, accumulating a 51-11-1 record. Lafayette has been Army’s most common FCS opponent. The two teams have played 12 times since 1978 with Army winning 11 times. Army played at least one game against an FCS school from 1978-97. The schedule was solely FBS squads from 1999-2001 before the 2002 team opened against Holy Cross. The Morgan State game will mark the ninth consecutive year the Black Knights have played an FCS squad.

The Black Knights are the two-time defending national rushing champions. It is the first time since 1944 and 1945 that Army has led the country in rushing in consecutive seasons. In 2012, the Black Knights averaged 369.8 yards per game which not only paced the nation, but also represented an Academy record. Army also broke school records for total rushing yards (4,438), total offense (5,235) and first downs (283). With six of top eight rushers returning, including two-time 1,000-yard man Raymond Maples, the 2013 campaign should not see much decline in production.
Junior Angel Santiago and sophomore A.J. Schurr waged a competition for the starting quarterback position throughout spring practice and preseason camp. While Schurr exited the spring with a slight edge, Santiago won the job and will take the first snap tonight. Santiago played in two games as a backup to Trent Steelman in 2012 and played in four games as a plebe. He has one career start, rushing 30 times for 72 yards against Rutgers in 2011. Schurr also gained experience last season, making five appearances in relief. He led the team with two touchdown passes.
Joining the duo in the backfield will be a bevy of proven players that should ease some of the pressure on the quarterback. It starts with Maples who enters his final season already ranked sixth on Army’s career rushing list with 2,489 yards. Tonight’s game marks the start of his quest to become only the second Army player to ever rush for 1,000 yards three times during their career (Mike Mayweather). Junior Larry Dixon is back for his third season as the Black Knights’ starting fullback. Dixon came up just shy of the 1,000-yard mark last season, running for 839 yards in 11 games. He has averaged better than 6.0 yards per carry for his career. Junior Terry Baggett will line up opposite Maples. In his first two seasons, Baggett has shown flashes of brilliance, but has struggled to stay healthy. He recorded his first 100-yard game in the 2012 opener at San Diego State and averaged more than 9.0 yards per carry before his injury. The receiving corps is made up of a mix of returning veterans and exciting prospects. Junior Chevaughn Lawrence led the team last season with 21 catches for 357 yards. Plebe Xavier Moss, a speedster who had a productive 2012 season at USMAPS, is expected to start at the other wideout. Senior Patrick Laird returns as well after catching 11 passes for 125 yards and a score last season.
The offensive line is anchored by left tackle Michael Kime. Kime, who was voted a team captain by his teammates, started at right tackle 11 times last season before suffering a knee injury. Despite not participating in spring practice, Kime is back at full strength. Junior Ryan Powis is back for his third season as the starter at center, while junior Stephen Shumaker and senior Zach Reichert will start at the guard positions. Sophomore Justin Gilbert will make his first career start at right tackle.
Morgan State’s defense gave up 29.7 points per game last season. The unit is anchored by Chris Robinson who led the team with 13.5 tackles and 8.5 sacks. He ranked 11th and 12th in those categories, respectively, in all of FCS last season. Nose tackle Demarco Bisbee is the team’s leading returning tackler with 41 total stops. He also racked up 7.5 tackles for loss and 3.5 sacks. Bisbee and cornerback Joe Rankin were second-team preseason All-MEAC picks. Rankin tied for the MEAC lead with five interceptions.

The Morgan State offense scored 20.8 points and averaged 292.7 yards per game in 2012. The Bears return both quarterbacks that saw the majority of playing time last season. Junior Seth Higgins is slated to start. Higgins, who has been a regular under center since his freshman year, completed 42 of his 106 passes (.396) for 445 yards. Robert Council played in 11 outings last season, going 98-for-195 (.503) for 1,115 yards and five touchdowns. Council also ran for 302 yards on 80 attempts.
Redshirt freshman Lamont Brown is expected to make his career debut tonight. Brown will try to replace the production of last season’s leading rusher, Travis Davidson. Davidson ran for 958 yards and 12 touchdowns during his final season. Freshman Herb Walker will also see playing time in the backfield for the Bears. Andrew King returns to lead the Morgan State receiving group. King made 25 catches for 334 yards and a team-high two touchdowns in 2012.
(When Morgan State Has The Ball — continued)
The Bears’ massive offensive front will provide interesting match ups for Army’s smaller, quicker front seven. Morgan State’s projected starting offensive linemen average 328 pounds per man. The smallest weights in at 300 pounds, while center Clarence Swain is the biggest of the group at 360 pounds.
Army’s defense allowed 35.3 points and 427.3 yards per game last season. The use of several underclassmen in key spots during the past two seasons should start to pay dividends in 2013. The Black Knights’ top tackler from last season Geoffery Bacon returns, but will be in a different position. Bacon’s 136 stops move from mike linebacker to free safety. The coaches believe that the extra room will better utilize Bacon’s athleticism and make him an even more valuable member of the defense. Army’s defensive backfield has experienced a makeover. In addition to Bacon, the other three starters will also be starting at new positions. Strong safety Shaquille Tolbert did not see any action as a plebe in 2012, and shifted from cornerback to his new job during spring drills. On the corners, plebe Josh Jenkins and junior Hayden Pierce will man the field and boundary spots, respectively. Pierce has been a regular since his first season, but has played mostly strong safety. An injury to last year’s starter, Chris Carnegie, forced the move during preseason camp.
The defensive line boasts three experienced players. Junior Robert Kough, the most productive member of the group last season with 42 tackles and 9.5 tackles for loss, returns, as do nose tackles T.J. Atimalala. and Richard Glover. Atimalala started four times as a plebe, while Glover started six times. Junior Joe Drummond, whio played in 10 games last season, is slated to start at right end.
One of the biggest pieces of improving Army’s defense will be improving the pass rush. Sophomore Dalton Mendenhall will get the nod at the “quick” outside linebacker position, Army’s primary pass rush spot. Mendenhall played in all 12 games last season as a reserve and on special teams. The other outside linebacker position will be manned by James Kelly who forced his way into the lineup as a sophomore last season, making 14 tackles in 11 games. Senior co-captain Jarrett Mackey will also get plenty of playing time at the “whip” linebacker spot.
With Bacon now playing seven yards deeper than last year, the coaches have called on sophomore Alex Meier  to man the middle of Army’s double-eagle flex. Meier was Army’s third-leading tackler with 71 takedowns as a plebe last season, playing most at rover. He suffered a knee injury versus Navy, but has made a remarkable recovery to get ready for the 2013 campaign. Senior co-captain Thomas Holloway, who has experience at both rover and free safety, will get the nod at rover.

Army will rely on Daniel Grochowski to handle the placekicking and kickoff duties. Grochowski was the Black Knights’ primary placekicker for most of the season as a plebe, hitting 10 of his 16 field goal tries, including a 46-yarder. Sophomore Alex Tardieu will serve as the Black Knights’ punter. He did not see any action in 2012. Julian Crockett returns as the team’s primary kick returner after averaging 19.2 yards per attempt last season. Josh Jenkins or senior Scott Williams will return punts.

Morgan State will be breaking in a new kicker and new punter in redshirt freshman Chris Moller and junior Miguel Bernard, respectively.

Tickets for Friday's game are still available onlineclicking here, or by calling the Army Athletics Ticket Office at 1-877-TIX-ARMY.


WSSU team to beat in South

WINSTON-SALEM, North Carolina  -- The question for the CIAA South has a familiar ring: Can any team dethrone two-time defending champions Winston-Salem State?

The North certainly hasn’t been able to, and Shaw was the last South team to do so in 2010.

• Winston-Salem State. Every year coach Connell Maynor laments over what he lost the year before. And every season he reloads.

The Rams have a 35-4 record since returning to the conference four years ago. WSSU advanced all the way to the Division II championship game before losing to Valdosta State 35-7.

Gone is starting quarterback Kameron Smith, who broke a slew of passing records, and All-American center Markus Lawrence. But the team will be in capable hands with redshirt junior QB Anthony Carrothers (Independence High), who threw for 989 yards and 12 touchdowns against just four interceptions.

Running back stud Maurice Lewis (201 carries, 1,027 yards, 13 TDs) is back to take some of the pressure off Carrothers. The quarterback will need all the help he can get with the loss of WSSU’s top three wide receivers.


The Skinny on Virginia Union football

Coach: Michael Bailey, 5th season, 19-21

2012: 5-5, 3-4 CIAA

Offense: The Panthers were fourth in the conference in rushing yards per game and first in average per rush, but Bailey believes he needs the run the ball more. VUU lost only two players from last season’s offense, but one was 1,000-yard rusher Jerrell Washington. With quarterback Kenneth Graham going into his sophomore season and his top three receivers returning, the Panthers could use the passing game to help alleviate the immediate need to find a replacement for Washington.

Defense: Graduation decimated a Panthers defense that finished third in the CIAA in points allowed (20.2). VUU lost eight starters from last season, but returns former University of Virginia transfer senior defensive back Devin Wallace, who was seventh on the team in tackles (46) last season. Junior Fritz Fenelon (46 tackles, 8 tackles for loss, 3 sacks) will be key up front.