Friday, December 31, 2010

2 ex-Bethune-Cookman stars make NFL Pro Bowl

Undrafted out of Bethune-Cookman. Cut in training camp. Nearly a season a half on the practice squad. All of Eric Weems' struggles to become an NFL player were validated Tuesday, as the former Seabreeze and Bethune-Cookman standout -- and now current Atlanta Falcons special teams ace -- was named to NFC roster for the 2011 NFL Pro Bowl as a specialist.

Videographer: tonypanzarella: Eric Weems 12/05/10 103 Yard Return

Joining Weems in the Jan. 30 game in Honolulu will be former Wildcats teammate Nick Collins, a Green Bay Packers cornerback who was selected to the NFL's all-star game for the third straight season.

The pair will become the first from B-CU to play in the same Pro Bowl, and Weems becomes just the fifth Wildcat to be selected for the game, joining Collins, Rashean Mathis, Larry Little and Cy McClairen.

Videographer: bbgun1967

Bethune-Cookman's Eric Weems Joins Seven Atlanta Falcons at The 2011 Pro Bowl

The Atlanta Falcons, who have the NFC’s best record at 12-3, placed an NFL-best seven players on the National Football Conference All-Star team that will face the American Football Conference All-Stars in the 2011 Pro Bowl – the kickoff to Super Bowl week – the NFL announced today.

The 2011 Pro Bowl will be played on Sunday, January 30, 2011 at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu, Hawaii one week before Super Bowl XLV in North Texas. Broadcast live on FOX at 7:00 PM ET, the Pro Bowl will be held prior to the Super Bowl for the second consecutive year and serve as the signature kickoff event of Super Bowl week.

Packers Get 5 Pro Bowlers; Rodgers, Williams Snubbed

GREEN BAY – The Green Bay Packers will send five players – left tackle Chad Clifton, safety Nick Collins, wide receiver Greg Jennings, outside linebacker Clay Matthews and cornerback Charles Woodson – to Hawaii for the 2011 Pro Bowl.

But three players who arguably deserved to be on that list as well – or instead – were snubbed: Quarterback Aaron Rodgers, cornerback Tramon Williams and nose tackle B.J. Raji.


Thursday, December 30, 2010

Pellum scores 34 as Hampton Pirates wins in San Francisco

Darrion Pellum scored a career-high 34 points for Hampton University (10-2), which pulled away late to beat Dominican (Calif.) 78-65 Wednesday at the Hilltop Challenge in San Francisco.

Pellum, a Hampton High graduate, knocked down a career-best nine 3-pointers for the Pirates, who outscored Division II Dominican 17-6 over the final 4:59. Charles Funches had 14 points and 16 rebounds for Hampton. Kwame Morgan added 20 points.

Marin brief: Dominican men lose basketball tourney opener

SAN FRANCISCO, CA -- The Dominican University men's basketball team overcame an early 8-0 deficit to take a 19-18 first-half lead, but in the end the Penguins were unable to hold off Hampton, falling 78-65 in the first round of the Hilltop Challenge at USF.

Dominican (0-8) trailed 37-24 at halftime but the Division II Penguins got no closer than seven points in the second half. The Pirates (10-2), a Division I team, pulled away late in the game.

Leon Hart led the Penguins with 17 points and Killian Larson added 16. Hampton's Darrion Pellum scored 34 points, hitting 9 of 13 3-point attempts in the process.

Troy Trojans Fall to Hampton University at Georgia State Invitational

ATLANTA – Dressing only nine players, the Troy University women's basketball team fell behind early on Wednesday afternoon and were unable to recover, falling 61-43 to Hampton University in the opening round of the Georgia State Invitational.

Junior DeAngela Sword (Montgomery, Ala./Pensacola JC) led the Trojans with 16 points, as she was the only player in double figures. Meanwhile, senior Donette McNair (New London, Conn./New London HS) recorded team-high eight rebounds just hours after arriving in Atlanta due to the blizzard in the northeast.

Quanneisha Perry led Hampton with 15 points and 17 rebounds, as she was one of two players to record a double-double on the night. Choicetta McMillian added 10 points and 10 rebounds in the win, while Jericka Jenkins scored 13 and Melanie Warner added 11 points in the win.


Savannah State men snap 13-game skid

HATTIESBURG, Miss. - Preston Blackmon scored a career-high 26 points and Joshua Montgomery scored 22 points to lead Savannah State University past Southeastern Louisiana, 74-65, on Wednesday, snapping the Tigers' 13-game losing streak.

After the Lions scored the first basket in the Hardwood Club Holiday Tournament, SSU (2-13) grabbed the lead with an 18-4 run and never relinquished it despite a late threat from Southeastern Louisiana.

With the Tigers leading by 16 in the second half, the Lions (5-5) used a 12-0 run to close to 51-47. Blackmon hit a 3-pointer and a jumper to end that spurt, but with 5:36 to go, David Ndoumba scored eight straight points to get Southeastern Louisiana within 68-65 with 1:30 left.

Second Half Rally Falls Short In 74-65 Loss To Savannah State

HATTIESBURG, Miss. – Preston Blackmon scored a career-high 26 points, including a 5-for-5 performance from behind the 3-point line, and Savannah State snapped a 13-game losing streak as it built a 16-point lead and held off Southeastern Louisiana, 74-65, on Wednesday in the USM Hardwood Club Holiday Classic at Reed Green Coliseum.

Joshua Montgomery added 22 points, including 3-for-6 from behind the arc, as SSU (2-13) shot a season-high 55 percent (23-for-42) from the floor and 64 percent (9-for-14) from behind the 3-point line. Southeastern, which fell to 5-5 overall will face the loser of the Southern Miss-Mississippi Valley contest in the consolation game.

SSU beats IUPUI, 69-52

Courtney Long scored a game-high 18 points, Darice Fountaine added 11 points and Brittany Cade chipped in 10 points as Savannah State cruised past Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, 69-52, in a women's basketball game Tuesday night.

A Tiger Arena crowd of 230 watched as SSU (6-7) jumped out to a 37-18 halftime lead. IUPUI (3-8) was led by Jasmine Horne and Shea Collins, who...


SAVANNAH, Ga. – Playing its first game in 15 days, IUPUI showed signs of rust and fell in an early double-digit hole that it could not crawl out of as it dropped a 69-52 decision to Savannah State Tuesday evening at Tiger Arena.

The Jaguars came into the game averaging a shade over 40 points per game in the paint over the last four contests, but the size of Savannah State limited IUPUI to half that total and the 36-20 scoring advantage inside proved to be the difference for the Tigers.

“We had a lot of first-half turnovers that put us behind the eight ball,” said head coach Austin Parkinson. “When you can’t score points in the paint and you turn the ball over on the road, it’s going to be a tough night.”


Colorado Buffs Slog Through Easy Win Against Maryland Eastern Shore Hawks

BOULDER, CO - Colorado mostly went through the motions Wednesday night in dispatching outmanned Maryland Eastern Shore 92-65 at the Coors Events Center.

If there is an upside, this is it: Even in going through the motions against an inferior opponent, the motions might be getting better - a promising sign with Big 12 Conference play only 10 days away.

But first-year CU Coach Tad Boyle had trouble seeing it that way. He shouldered the blame for a lackluster start that seeped through most of the opening half until the Buffs got their heads, ah, back into their assignments.


BOULDER, Colo. - The University of Maryland Eastern Shore men's basketball team showed a lot of fight but were overcome by inconsistency as they fell, 92-65, to the University of Colorado Wednesday night at the Coors Events Center.

Redshirt junior Hillary Haley (Oxon Hill, Md.) tallied 18 points in the loss on 7-of-12 shooting from the field. Haley also chipped in four rebounds and a steal on the night. Senior Kevin White (Brooklyn, N.Y.) added in 12 points while junior Dishawn Bradshaw (Baltimore, Md.) had 11 of his own. Tonight's game marks the third consecutive double-figure scoring effort by both Bradshaw and Haley.

The Hawks (3-9) were led in rebounding by junior Tyler Hines (Sicklerville, N.J.), who had seven in the contest (five defensive).


Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Alcorn State Collins accepts head football coaching job at Northern Colorado

Collins becomes first minority head coach at NCU
LORMAN, MS — For the third time in four seasons, Alcorn State University will have a new head football coach patrolling the sidelines in 2011.

The University of Northern Colorado announced Tuesday that Earnest Collins has accepted the head coaching position for the Bears. Collins coached the Braves in 2009 and 2010, amassing an 8-12 overall record and a 7-9 record in the SWAC.

Collins served as associate head coach at Alcorn in 2008 under then-head coach Earnest Jones. After Jones was relieved of his duties following the 2008 season, Collins was elevated to head coach. He finished 3-6 overall and 3-4 in the SWAC in 2009, and was 5-6 overall and 4-5 in the SWAC this past season.

Northern Colorado hires Earnest Collins as its football coach

GREELEY, CO — Northern Colorado found its new football coach at Alcorn State and in the UNC record book. Earnest Collins Jr., a former UNC defensive back, punt returner and assistant coach who still has a school record, is returning to his alma mater to be the Bears' head coach. Collins was Alcorn State's coach the last two seasons.

"This is a chance for me to come home to the place that made me who I am," Collins said in a statement. "My mom and UNC made me the man I am today, so I am thankful for the opportunity to come home. I believe every coach's dream is to come back and coach at his alma mater and win championships at his alma mater. I can't wait to get started and see what we can accomplish. I know we can do some great things at UNC."

Former UNC football standout to take over as head coach

GREELEY, CO — A former Northern Colorado assistant coach has been named as the school's new coach. Athletics director Jay Hinrichs said Tuesday that Ernest Collins Jr. will be the Bears' 16th football coach. Collins, on the team from 1991 to 1994, is the school's single-season school record holder for punt return yards — 497 his senior season. He amassed a total of 978 punt return yards.

Collins told the Greeley Tribune that a press conference on his new job is planned for Thursday. Collins will succeed Scott Downing, fired in November after five seasons and a 9-47 overall record.


Coppin State finds Wrong Gym

Coach Fang Mitchell plays 66% of Eagle games on the road
Since he has been at Coppin State, Coach Fang Mitchell has played 66 percent of his games on the road - half the MEAC games and practically all the nonconference games when his team collects guarantees to play the big boys in their arenas.

Amazingly, Coppin had never shown up at the wrong gym - until last week. Even though it was supposed to play UConn in Hartford on Dec. 20, the team was instructed to show up in Storrs the night before to practice, according to Mitchell. The gym was closed.

Eventually, Coppin got inside. They had one ball for half-an-hour. Eventually, they got enough balls to conduct a practice. And played the game the next night at the XL Center in Hartford. Coppin lost, 76-64, not a bad result against a really good team.


Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Clemson Cruises Past Delaware State, 76-41

Jerai Grant scored 15 points to lead a balanced Clemson attack Monday night as the Tigers cruised past Delaware State 76-41.

Clemson Tigers crush Delaware State Hornets

Grant scored 15 while also dishing out five assists while Milton Jennings added 11 points and nine rebounds.
Delaware State trailed 12-11 with 12 minutes left in the first half before the Tigers responded with an 18-0 run over the next five minutes of play.

“It was a really good win for our guys. I thought we played really efficient basketball," head coach Brad Brownell said afterwards. "I talked to our team about playing with basketball sureness tonight—making the extra pass, sharing the ball, being strong, meeting passes, and limiting turnovers.

"We were facing a team that plays a bunch of different defenses and tries to make you get out of rhythm. They go trap at different times. I think our guys showed good poise.”


Recap: Louisville vs. Morgan State

Preston Knowles scored 31 points, Kyle Kuric had 25 and No. 22 Louisville carried its 30-point halftime lead to the final buzzer in a 104-74 rout of Morgan State.

Kuric hit five three-pointers and scored 17 of his points in the first half for the Cardinals (11-1), who built a 58-28 lead after 20 minutes and went ahead by as many as 34 in the second half.

Knowles and Kuric combined to go 13-for-19 from three-point range in the game as Louisville earned its third straight win since being upset by Drexel on December 14.

Preston(!), Kuric post career highs as Louisville rolls

In one of the best shooting performances in program history, Louisville hit 17-of-23 three-point attempts and routed visiting Morgan State 104-74 in their final tune-up before Friday's showdown with arch-rival Kentucky.

The bulk of the damage from beyond the arc was done by Preston Knowles and Kyle Kuric, who combined to hit 13-of-19 from three. Each posted career scoring highs, Knowles with 31 and Kuric with 25.

It was the second straight 100-plus performance by the Cards, who crushed Western Kentucky 114-82 on Dec. 22.


Slow-starting LSU Tigers heat up late to pull away from Southern Jaguars

Not long after the LSU men’s basketball team pulled away from Southern in the second half for a 62-41 victory Monday night, fans trickled out of the Pete Maravich Assembly Center and headed into the night, many of them surely searching for updates on the just-under-way Saints-Falcons game.

By then, the temperature in Baton Rouge had dipped to 31 degrees and headed toward the 20s. How fitting. For much of Monday night’s game between these two struggling teams, the Jaguars and Tigers were both ice-cold from the floor.

Assessing basketball season as SWAC play nears

Yes, the Southern men’s basketball team lost to LSU by 21 points on Monday night, 62-41.

Yes, it was the Jaguars’ ninth straight loss.

No, they probably won’t sniff a Southwestern Athletic Conference championship.

They probably won’t finish above fifth.


Monday, December 27, 2010

Return of key seniors a gift for TSU

The Texas Southern men's basketball team received some early Christmas presents when three of its key players returned to action earlier this month.

Senior forward Travele Jones and senior guards Harrison Smith and Justin Ray are back in the lineup after having to miss nearly a quarter of the season because of compliance issues. Jones returned to the starting lineup against Iowa State on Dec. 12, and Smith and Ray were activated one and two games later, respectively.

Jones, the preseason Southwestern Athletic Conference Player of the Year, has provided an immediate boost for the Tigers (2-8). He averaged ...

TSU softball signs 3 early

The TSU softball team landed three recruits during the early signing period. The Tigers signed...


Sunday, December 26, 2010

Morgan State (4-5, 1-0 MEAC) at U of Louisville (12-1, 0-0 Big East)

Morgan State Bears Coach Todd Bozeman
MSU Gamenotes

Game 10
Morgan State (4-5, 1-0 MEAC) vs. Louisville (12-1, 0-0 Big East)
Monday, Dec. 27, 2010 – 7 p.m. (ET)
KFC Yumi! Center – Louisville, Ky.
Television – WHAS TV (Ch. 11 in Louisville)
Radio – WKRD 790 AM

Follow Morgan State men's basketball on twitter @morganstbears for in-game updates and the latest news on the squad.

The Opening Tip
Morgan State, the 2010 MEAC champions, will take on Louisville on Monday, Dec. 27 at 7 p.m. at the KFC Yumi! Center in Louisville, Ky. MSU 4-5 will look to rebound from a 97-55 non-conference loss at No. 5 Syracuse on Dec. 20 at the Carrier Dome. Louisville dropped Western Kentucky 114-82 on Wednesday night at the E.A. Diddle Arena to improve to 10-1. Monday night's game will mark the third meeting between the teams, Louisville holds a 2-0 advantage.

Big East Basketball: Louisville hosts Morgan State - Monday Night

THE STORY: Fresh off a dominating performance in their first road game, No. 25 Louisville returns home for another tuneup before the schedule gets much tougher. The Cardinals will try not to overlook Morgan State with a visit from No. 14 Kentucky scheduled for Friday and the Big East slate starting next week. Rick Pitino’s team has impressed all season with its ability to get out and run off pressure defense and shoot 3-pointers, a style that plays well with a young team and a 10-man rotation.


Saturday, December 25, 2010

Globetrotters helped shape VUU history

In March 1941, Virginia Union scheduled a game against the Harlem Globetrotters. What followed was one of the most devastating losses in Union history, and the repercussions still can be felt today.

Before 1947, Virginia Union didn't have its own basketball court. The Panthers played at either the Municipal Recreation Center or on the stage of the Richmond Landmark Theatre, then known as The Mosque. They didn't have a bus, either. Fans would drive players from campus to the court, watch them play and drive them back.

The Belgian Building, the current home of Virginia Union's basketball team, wasn't built in Richmond. It was constructed in 1939 for the New York World's Fair. The federal government awarded the building to VUU in 1941.

Harlem Globetrotters true to their name

The worst trip Hi Rise Brown ever endured went from Dubai to London to New York to Miami to Brazil to Argentina. The journey lasted 37 hours. "Everyone got their bags except me," Hi Rise said.

Just as the name suggests, a big part of being a Harlem Globetrotter is traveling to all corners of the earth. Hi Rise, a 6-5 forward from the Chicago area, has flown on a Blackhawk helicopter in Iraq and walked on the Great Wall of China.

In their 84 years, the Globetrotters have visited 120 countries. Handles Franklin, a 6-1 guard from Harrisburg, Pa., has been to more than 50 countries in his four years as a Globetrotter.

Link: Photo gallery - Globetrotters in Richmond


Friday, December 24, 2010

North Carolina A&T 50, Arizona State 56

'Tis the season for college basketball letdowns. With the holidays inching closer, teams across the land are about to break for a few days, turning that final get-away contest into an adventure. Arizona State nearly fell victim Thursday afternoon, needing to rally from a 12-point deficit in the second half to defeat spunky North Carolina A&T 56-50 at Wells Fargo Arena.

ASU coach Herb Sendek credited the 5-6 Aggies, picked to finish eighth in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference preseason poll, but he also questioned himself, scheduling a noon tip so the players could get started on a three-day break.

"They have a game, they're all hustling to the airport," Sendek said. "With a disproportionate number of newcomers, these guys haven't been home (in a while), so I know it's just human nature (to look) forward to hustling out of here."

Photos from the game

Aggies fall short in bid for upset

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Rihards Kuksiks scored 15 points, including a tie-breaking 3-pointer with 2:52 left, and Arizona State rallied to beat N.C. A&T 56-50 on Thursday. Kuksiks' 3 gave the Sun Devils (7-4) a 53-50 advantage, and they held on to come back from a 12-point deficit.

Nic Simpson, who missed three 3s in the final 1:23, scored 17 points and had five assists to lead the Aggies (5-6). A&T led 29-23 at halftime and extended its advantage to 38-26 in the first four minutes of the second half. But Aggies forward Thomas Coleman picked up his third and fourth fouls in a 26-second span and had to go to the bench with 14:55 remaining.


Coppin St 56, Wisconsin 80: Opponents are in a zone, but so is Leuer as Badgers coast

Madison, Wis. — Wisconsin senior Jon Leuer has a new moniker: Zone-buster. Thinking his undersized team could identify and stick with UW's shooters by playing a variety of zone defenses, Coppin State coach Fang Mitchell opened with a 1-2-2 zone.

Leuer opened with 4 consecutive three-pointers in the first 2 minute 54 seconds Thursday night at the Kohl Center. That display set the tone as UW shot 50% from three-point range in opening a 19-point halftime lead and won easily, 80-56.

"I was able to knock down my first couple and get into a rhythm," said Leuer, who hit 5 of 10 three-pointers and 7 of 15 field-goal attempts overall to finish with 19 points. "From there my teammates were finding me in open spots. "I just found myself open a lot."

Oates: A nice win against Coppin State, but the fans were shortchanged by the schedule

Coppin State is one of college basketball's vagabond programs. During the non-conference season, the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference team travels around from one men's basketball powerhouse to the next, taking its lumps on the floor in return for a nice paycheck.

It wasn't at all surprising, then, that Coppin State showed up to face the University of Wisconsin at the Kohl Center Thursday night. In the midst of a 12-day stretch during which they play at Connecticut, Kentucky and Texas in addition to UW, the overmatched Eagles were representative of the teams that have come to Madison this season.



Note: Mainstream sportswriters can write all the criticisms they desire regarding Coppin State University basketball program. Call 'em "vagabond program" or any other name...but at the end of the day, the only thing that really matters is that Coach Ron "Fang" Mitchell is providing opportunity, exposure and experience to his players in competing with elite Division I level programs. Most importantly, he is earning enough capital from these "money games" to support ALL the non-revenue athletic programs at CSU. For that alone, Fang Mitchell is a hall of fame coach who provides countless opportunities to urban youth, who otherwise, would not receive an education and travel exposure beyond Baltimore City limits.

The Eagles are 4-5, 0-1 MEAC and NEXT GAME is at #14 ranked Kentucky on Dec. 28.


Thursday, December 23, 2010

Morgan sinks Liberty for Pirates' second straight win

HAMPTON, Va. – The Hampton University men’s basketball team trailed for much of the night Wednesday, but junior guard Kwame Morgan gave the Pirates the lead when it mattered most, sinking a 3-pointer with one second to play to help Hampton beat Liberty 62-59 at the HU Convocation Center.

The Pirates (9-2) trailed for 39 minutes, 20 seconds, but Morgan (Largo, Md.) tied the game at 59-59 with 40 seconds to play with a trey. Liberty had a shot, but the Flames turned the ball over with 20 seconds remaining, thanks to a steal by junior forward Danny Agbelese (Lanham, Md.).

Liberty (7-6) took a 53-39 lead with 9:44 to play after Evan Gordon sank a 3-pointer, but the Pirates responded with a 13-0 run, cutting Liberty’s lead to one, 53-52, with 3:52 to play on a layup from senior forward Charles Funches (Jersey City, N.J.).

Liberty Flames commit 26 turnovers in loss to the Hampton Pirates

HAMPTON, Va. — Liberty men’s basketball assistant coach Jason Eaker walked off the floor at the Hampton University Convocation Center, bowed his head, closed his eyes in frustration and shook his head sharply. He knew his team had given one away Wednesday night.

Interpret the words “give away” literally. Despite shooting 52.1 percent against the nation’s fourth-best field-goal percentage defense, Liberty lost to Hampton 62-59 thanks to 26 turnovers. The Flames (7-6) blew an 18-point lead, including a five-point lead in the final two minutes.

And fittingly, the game’s key play was a turnover, which was the theme of the night for Liberty.


Bowling: UMES Perched Atop December NTCA Poll

UMES Head Bowling Coach Sharon Brummell
After an eventful fall semester, the University of Maryland Eastern Shore of Princess Anne, MD was ranked as the No. 1 NCAA women’s bowling program in the country by the National Tenpins Coaches Association in its December national poll. UMES received 16 out of a possible 25 first place votes.

Highlighting their successful first half was the Hawks’ championship match victory over the University of Central Missouri to win the 20-team Hawk Classic in Millsboro, DE. UMES (41-7) also ended in second place at the 18-team Jersey Jamboree in Howell, NJ; and owns a commanding six game lead in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference Northern Division after 20 matches.

Ranked second was Fairleigh Dickinson University of Teaneck, NJ, 2010 NCAA national champions. The Knights (40-9), who collected four first place votes, won the championship of the Jersey Jamboree by defeating UMES in the title match; finished in second at the 22-team Jeanette Lee Invitational in Midlothian, VA; and after nine matches sits in a first place tie in the North East Conference with three other schools.


National Tenpin Coaches Association Poll
December 2010
RankSchool (first-place votes)Season Record

Maryland-Eastern Shore (16)

Fairleigh Dickinson (4)

Nebraska - Lincoln (5)
tral Missouri

Sam Houston State

Arkansas State


Sacred Heart
New Jersey City
St. Francis (NY)

Alabama A&M
Stephen F. Austin
Norfolk State
Delaware State
Florida A&M
Minnesota State - Mankato
Louisiana Tech
Others receiving votes (listed alphabetically)
Fayetteville State University, Fayetteville, NC; Prairie View A&M University, Prairie View, TX; 
Saint Francis University, Loretto, PA; State University of New York Institute of Technology, Utica, NY; 
University of Wisconsin, Whitewater, Whitewater, WI.