Sunday, May 31, 2015

Livingstone College Senior Quanera Hayes Celebrates her 3rd 400 Meter National Title and Adds 200 Meter Title


ALLENDALE, Michigan -- Senior sprinter Quanera Hayes (Hope Mills, NC) capped her collegiate career by successfully defending her title as the 400 meter National Champion once again at the 2015 NCAA Division II National Championships hosted by Grand Valley State University. This win makes her the first woman in Division II history to win 3 straight Outdoor 400 meter titles.

On the men's side CIAA member St. Augustine's University won their 3rd straight National Championship followed by Findlay University. For the women Central Missouri won their first National Title followed by Lincoln (Mo). Livingstone College finished 11th overall in team standing.

The four day Nationals event began on Wednesday with Quanera Hayes receiving the USTFCCCA Atlantic Region Track Athlete of the Year award at a social in front of 1000+ Athletes and Coaches. Racing began on Thursday, where Hayes cruised to an easy preliminary 400 meter, 2nd heat win of 54.89 to qualify for the finals on Saturday. On Friday, Hayes was eclipsed at the line to finish second in her heat of the 200 meter dash running 23.73 but still received an automatic qualification for Saturday's finals.


On Saturday, the fireworks show was ready to begin starting at 3:05 PM when Hayes was able to once again surpass Carly Muscaro who finished second to Hayes a year ago but entered the meet with the fast time of 51.83. Quanera Hayes' finals time of 51.93 is her 3rd fastest of her career but good enough for her 3rd straight 400 meter National Championship. If that was not enough, just over an hour and a half later she was able to run a new personal best of 22.81 in the 200 meters to win her 4th National Championship of her career as well as her 11th and 12th NCAA All-American titles.

Quanera will now focus her talents on the 2015 USA National Championships and her post-collegiate career.


Albany State Kickoff Rams in the Roses Campaign for 2016 Pasadena Tournament of Roses

ALBANY, Georgia -- Albany State University is ecstatic about having the only band in the state of Georgia scheduled to march in the 2016 Tournament of Roses Parade on January 1. These exceptional student musicians will place Georgia and the entire Southern Region on an international stage. This is an opportunity of a lifetime.

Albany State is one of 13 national bands selected to participate in the nationally televised parade, which takes place before the Rose Bowl college football playoff game.

It will cost $3,000 per student to cover food, lodging, traveling, and other performance and event expenses for our 120 members to travel to Pasadena, California. Please help to make this dream a reality for these students and future leaders.

Click here to support.

Approximately 1 million spectators line the parade route, while tens of millions watch the television coverage in more than 200 international territories and countries. The Rose Parade is broadcast on ABC, Hallmark Channel, HGTV, KTLA (Tribune), NBC, RFD-TV and Univision.  Participating bands not only march the 5.5-mile parade route, but also have the opportunity to take a band photo in front of the historic Rose Bowl and perform along with other Rose Parade bands in shows at Bandfest.  Known as America's New Year Celebration, the annual Rose Parade features spectacular floral floats that are completely covered with natural materials.


The criteria for selection are based on “excellent musicianship, strong performance skills, interesting entertainment value and outstanding directorship,” according to Richard DeJesu, chairman of the Pasadena Tournament of Roses.

“We are extremely pleased and excited,” said ASU interim dean of the College of Arts and Humanities Marcia Hood. “It will showcase the hard work that our students and faculty have put toward this effort as they do all the time. We are also extremely proud of them and excited to showcase our institution”

Michael Decuir, director of ASU’s band, submitted an application for consideration last spring to the Rose Bowl committee. The application included a performance video and recommendation letters from retired band directors at Florida A&M, Jackson State and Tennessee State universities.

“It’s been a lifelong dream of mine to participate in that parade,” Decuir said. “It’s the premiere parade in this country.”

2015/2016 Participating Bands

• Aguilas Doradas Marching Band, Puebla, Mexico
Albany State University Marching Rams, Albany, Georgia
• Allen Eagle Escadrille, Texas
• Franklin Regional H.S. Panther Band, Murrysville, Pennsylvania
• Jenks H.S. Trojan Pride, Oklahoma
• Latin Band Pedro Molina, Quetzaltenango, Guatemala
• Los Angeles Unified School District Honor Band, California
• Mason H.S. Marching Band, Ohio
• Mira Mesa H.S. Sapphire Sound, San Diego, California
• Pasadena City College Tournament of Roses Honor Band & Herald Trumpets, California
• Plymouth-Canton Educational Park, Canton, Michigan
• Punahou Marching Band, Honolulu, Hawaii
• Saratoga H.S. Marching Band, California
• The Salvation Army Tournament of Roses Band
• Toho H.S. Green Band, Japan
• United States Marine Corps West Coast Composite Band
• Virginia Military Institute Regimental Band, Lexington, Virginia
• Wyoming All-State Marching Band
• Plus ... the two Rose Bowl Game University Marching Bands to be determined



Florida A&M Hurdler Dennis Pugh Qualifies For The NCAA Championship In Oregon

Dennis Pugh will be traveling to Eugene, OR for the NCAA National Championship Meet
Courtesy: Florida A&M Sports Information

JACKSONVILLE, Florida -- FAMU hurdler Dennis Pugh was the lone Rattler to qualify for the NCAA National Championship Track & Field meet in Eugene, OR
. Pugh ran a 51.33 time to make the cut for the Rattlers in the NCAA Regional Championship meet in Jacksonville, Fla., on the campus of the University of North Florida.

Pugh, will join an impressive list of former Rattler greats who participated at the NCAA national championship meet. The last FAMU track stars to maek it to the meet was four ladies from the Lady Rattler track team. The 4x100m relay team of Nakia Linson, Jasmine Smith, Ashley Ivey and Dynasty Jones participated in the meet in 2013.

Coach Marc Small, in his first season as head track and field coach, will accompany Pugh on his trek to place nationally in the hurdles and compete for a chance to be named NCAA All-American.

The NCAA National Championship meet will be held June 10-13 on the campus of the University of Oregon.


Hampton University Track Sending Three to NCAA Outdoors

JACKSONVILLE, Florida -- The Hampton University men's and women's track & field teams will send a combined three student-athletes to the NCAA Outdoor Championships after the NCAA East Preliminary wrapped up on Saturday at the University of North Florida's Hodges Stadium.

Le'Quisha Parker, Chidi Okezie, and Trey Holloway all advanced in their respective events.

Parker (Silver Spring, Md.), who in the indoor season was a Second Team All-America honoree in the 200-meter dash, will compete for an NCAA title in the same event in two weeks after running a 23.16 in the semifinals to post the 10th-fastest time.

That performance matched her best time of the outdoor season.

Okezie (Philadelphia, Pa.) ran a season-best 46.07 in the semifinals of the men's 400-meter dash, ranking ninth among the top qualifiers heading into Eugene.

He also posted the fifth-fastest time in the preliminaries with a 46.18.

Holloway (Chesapeake, Va.), who placed third in the 60-meter hurdles at the NCAA Indoor Championships and was named First Team All-American, ran a 13.80 in the semifinals to post the 11th-fastest time and qualify for the NCAA meet.

He was 10th in the preliminary round with a 13.86.

The 2015 NCAA Div. I Outdoor Track & Field Championships will be held in Eugene, Ore. – hosted by the University of Oregon – June 10-13.

Hampton has five NCAA Div. I champions in its history; current Pirates assistant coach Yvette Lewis won two NCAA triple jump titles, while Olympic gold medalist Francena McCorory was a three-time NCAA champion in the 400-meter dash.

For more information on Hampton University track & field, please call the Office of Sports Information at (757) 727-5811, or visit the official Pirates website at



Florida A&M's rocky NCAA Tournament experience will help next season

GAINESVILLE, Florida | Florida A&M’s returning players won't be dwelling on their two-and-out performance in their first NCAA baseball tournament.

Instead, it will serve as strong motivation for a team that will welcome back 25 of 29 underclassmen for the 2016 season.

“Of course the losses are going to be tough,” said junior left fielder Marlon Gibbs, an Orange Park High (Jacksonville) graduate who had two of the Rattlers’ six hits on Saturday in an 8-1 loss to Florida Atlantic in an elimination game at Alfred A. McKethan Stadium. “But we’re going to take this experience and we’re going to be a better team.”

The Owls (41-18) advanced to an elimination game on Sunday against the loser of Saturday’s late game between the University of Florida and South Florida.

FAMU (23-25) rebounded from a 19-1 loss to the Gators on Friday to battle FAU hard for eight innings. However, Esteban Puerta’s three-run homer and Ricky Santiago’s two-run double blew the game open in the top of the ninth after the Rattlers trailed 3-1.

FAU coach John McCormack said he expected no less from a team coached by Jamey Shouppe, the long-time Florida State pitching coach who has taken FAMU from a 7-45 season in 2013 to the MEAC championship and the school’s historic berth in the tournament.

“He knows what buttons to push,” McCormack said. “They played hard.”


Saturday, May 30, 2015

Bowie State's Khari Lee Living NFL Experience

Khari Lee
HOUSTON, Texas -- The dream fulfilled continues for former Bowie State University Bulldog Tight End, Khari Lee.  Following a Pro Day that brought multiple NFL Scouts to Bulldogs Stadium and several personal try-outs at team NFL team practice facilities, Lee followed in the footsteps of former Bulldogs Defensive End Delano Johnson and signed a Free Agent contract with the Houston Texans on May 8, 2015.

When asked what his initial reaction was when he got the call from the Texans, Lee said, "I was very excited once I got the call. All the hard work I had put in over the years got me to that point. It was surreal! The Texans were actually the first team to come to school and work me out." He then added, "I'm not really sure what the coaches have in store for the tight end position this year; I'm just excited to go out there, give it my all and compete. The Medal of Honor Bowl and East-West Shriner Game were great for exposure during my pre-draft process but now that I have an opportunity, I have to make the most of it."

Since joining the Texans, Lee has spoken with Johnson who was on the Texans roster from May 2012 to August 2013. Having moved on to the Toronto Argonauts, Johnson still had sage advice for the Rookie. "He urged me to pray every night and earn my spot every day.

In January, Bill O'Brien was named the new Head Coach and John Perry was named Tight Ends Coach. We asked Lee what strengths he brought to the table as a Rookie with a fresh coaching staff and going up against the likes of J.J. Watt and Vince Wilfork in practice every day? "My versatility is what separates me from a lot of people. Whether it is my route running or run blocking, I think I do a lot of things well and it's a great opportunity to come out and compete against some of the best in the NFL. "

A walk-on student-athlete turned All-American and now college graduate turned professional football player. When asked to recall his most vivid Bowie State Bulldogs memories, Lee said, "My most vivid memory would have to be warming up on game day and hearing that band march down the hill. The atmosphere of it all makes HBCU football one of a kind. Like those before him, Lee will most certainly take Bulldog Pride with him.

 "The article of clothing I'd wear every game if I could would probably be a Bowie State dry fit workout shirt."

 Lee ended with these words for his follow Bulldogs he knows will one day follow him, Delano Johnson, Douglas McNeil, III and Isaac Redman; all NFL players. "Find your why and never stop grinding. If you want something, go get it. Don't listen to the critics or fans just go out and use your God given talent with 100% effort."

 No better words have been spoken. Well done, Bulldog…well done.


UDC Men’s Basketball Standout Quasim Jones Invited to iBall Pro Combine

POTTSTOWN, Pennsylvania  –  Recent graduate Quasim Jones was invited to participate in the prestigious iBall Pro Combine on May 30th-31st at Pottstown Senior High School.

"I'm very happy that he is getting an opportunity to continue doing something that he loves – playing the game of basketball," Head Coach Mike Riley said. "It's great that since he has his degree, he has options."

This innovative, two-day event will feature some of the nation's top free agents as they compete in front of NBA, WNBA, and FIBA scouts for the consideration of contracts at the US and international professional basketball level.

The event will include everything from action-packed tournament-style games and world-class drills to intensive speed and athletic tests all in an effort to demonstrate what it takes to play at the professional level. Data for all registered players is shared internationally before, during and after the combine to inform scouts on key metrics associated with professional evalutation, including: athleticism, reading plays and decision-making, levels of contribution to a winning team and attitude.

iBall United is a full-service player management, marketing and consulting firm focused on building professional careers. The company decided to created the iBall Pro Combine for athletes as an effective and efficient tool for capturing the attention of NBA, WNBA and FIBA scouts in one controlled setting.

Jones has had a terrific two-year basketball career at the University of the District of Columbia before graduating this May. This season he was ranked 3rd in the East Coast Conference in assists (126) and assist-to-turnover ratio (2.1), 4th in free-throw percentage (81.6) and 16th in steals (35).

For more information about the iBall Pro Combine, please visit


Maria Thompson Appointed President of Coppin State University

ADELPHI, Maryland -- James L. Shea, chair of the University System of Maryland (USM) Board of Regents, announced (May 19, 2015) the appointment of Maria Thompson, Ph.D. as president of Coppin State University. Thompson is currently the provost and vice president for academic affairs at the State University of New York at Oneonta (SUNY Oneonta).

Thompson has held her position at SUNY Oneonta since 2011 after spending 13 years as a leading administrator for research and sponsored programs at Tennessee State University, a historically black institution in Nashville, Tennessee.

Thompson's appointment is effective July 1.

"We are delighted to welcome Dr. Thompson as president of Coppin State University," said Chairman Shea. "Her background as a top-level academic leader at SUNY-Oneonta, and her earlier experience in building a research enterprise at an urban historically black institution, position her well to advance Coppin as a vital institution in Baltimore and the state."

Coppin State University, a historically black institution, is an urban liberal arts campus anchored in northwest Baltimore. Founded in 1900, Coppin State offers 33 majors and 12 graduate degree programs with courses in nursing, business, teacher education, and science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).

"I look forward to working with the faculty, staff, students and other stakeholders to continue the university's commitment to preparing graduates who are analytical, socially responsible and lifelong learners," Thompson said. "Urban higher education plays a vital role in shaping the future of local, national and global communities and I am excited about joining a campus with a rich legacy of community engagement."

As the chief academic officer for SUNY Oneonta, Thompson has led the educational mission for a public, regional comprehensive university offering bachelor's and master's degrees to 6,000 students. She has overseen institutional accreditation, institutional planning and assessment, and professional development of more than 500 full- and part-time faculty members. She initiated the first academic master plan for the campus and implemented a plan for restructuring the division of academic affairs to strengthen the university's long-term strategic position.

"Dr. Thompson has had such an impressive career in higher education," said USM Chancellor William E. "Brit" Kirwan. "In her four years at SUNY Oneonta, she has led an impressive university-wide effort to advance the quality of the institution's academic programs. Her leadership of the research programs at Tennessee State University is equally impressive. Her time at TSU is especially relevant as she assume the leadership of Coppin State University because, like CSU, it is a historically black institution in an urban setting. We are very fortunate to have found a person of Dr. Thompson's quality to lead CSU into the future.

"I also want to express my deep gratitude and appreciation to the presidential search-and-screen committee. Under the skilled direction of Michael Cryor, the committee of faculty, staff, students, and community representatives worked diligently and effectively to identify a pool of highly accomplished applicants from which Dr. Thompson rose to the top."

At SUNY Oneonta, in addition to the successful reaffirmation of the college's accreditation, Thompson led the implementation of a new budget model for academic programs. She is vice chair of the SUNY Association of Chief Academic Officers, an organization of provosts from all 64 SUNY campuses. At Tennessee State, Thompson developed and executed a plan that increased externally funded projects to more than $45 million by focusing on grants and contracts that provided experiential learning opportunities for students.

Thompson graduated from Tennessee State University and holds an M.S. from the Ohio State University in textiles. She earned her doctorate in textile science and textile economics from the University of Tennessee. She completed the Institute for Educational Management at Harvard University in 2011 and, in 2013, completed the Spectrum Executive Leadership Program sponsored by the American Council on Education. She is in the 2014-15 class of the Executive Leadership Academy, a leadership development program jointly developed by the American Academic Leadership Institute, the American Association of State Colleges and Universities, and the Council of Independent Colleges.

The USM Board of Regents in July 2013 appointed Mortimer H. Neufville, Ph.D., to a two-year term as president, effective through June 30, 2015. He began his service to Coppin as interim president in January 2013. He played a critical role in advancing the university's future while the board's Special Review Committee conducted a comprehensive review of Coppin State. The board's analysis developed strategies to increase student retention and graduation rates, improve administrative operations and financial stability, and build a culture focused on success.

"I offer my profound appreciation to Mort Neufville for his leadership of Coppin State University during this transitional time in the university's history," Kirwan said. "Dr. Neufville has been a great friend of the USM, taking on appointments as interim president of both University of Maryland Eastern Shore and Coppin State before his two-year appointment as CSU president. We are grateful to Mort Neufville for his insight and stewardship."

To learn more about Coppin State University, visit

B.C. Lions' backup QB position "wide open", Tedford says

College: Howard University
Hometown: Pittsburgh, PA
Courtesy: B.C. Lions

KAMLOOPS, British Columbia — Football decision-makers have long concluded that having a top-notch backup quarterback is vital.

B.C. Lions head coach Jeff Tedford feels no differently. He just has to figure out who he is.

“After (Travis) Lulay, it’s a wide open competition,” Tedford declared Saturday, after the Lions’ three-day mini-camp for rookies and first-year players ended. “Travis is our starter.”

Veteran John Beck, the presumptive No. 2 quarterback in many eyes, will have to compete for that role, Tedford seemed to suggest, though that opportunity won’t occur right away.

Beck is being quarantined after being laid low by a bug and won’t be on the field Sunday when the Lions open their main training camp at Hillside Stadium.

That means more practice repetitions for holdover Travis Partridge and two Lions rookie quarterbacks, Jon Jennings and Greg McGhee, who move on to the main camp.

The Lions released two more rookie QBs today -- Boise State’s Grant Hedrick and Aaron Wilmer of Delaware Valley -- who simply didn’t have the time to get up to speed with the others.


FAMU plans to learn from first tournament experience

GAINESVILLE, Florida -- Florida A&M head coach Jamey Shouppe said his goodbyes to his five seniors were emotional after the Rattlers’ first-ever NCAA tournament season came to an end.

The Rattlers (23-25) lost 8-1 to Florida Atlantic (41-18) Saturday in the Gainesville Regional, and Shouppe said after the game was over, he and his players said a short prayer for Michael Birdsong, Ryan Kennedy, Marcus Roberts, Jeremy Barlow and Jared Walker.

FAMU has plenty of talent coming back, but Shouppe said there’s no replacing the guys who helped turn the program around when he first arrived two seasons ago.

“I couldn’t be prouder of those five seniors,” Shouppe said.


There’s a new dog at the top

ETTRICK, Virginia -- Former ACC basketball legend Charles G. “Lefty” Driesell used to use the quote, “The sun don’t shine on the same dog every day” (actually, that’s not the EXACT way the saying goes, but I can’t use it in its entirety because this is a family newspaper).

What that saying references is that no matter how much time it takes, eventually a new hound finds the shady hole.

It may take a while: just ask NASCAR driver and Sunday’s Charlotte race winner Carl Edwards about ending a 31-race losing streak or the NBA Golden State Warriors being back in the pro basketball finals for the first time in 40 years.

Where I’m taking this is the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association – yes, the CIAA that has been ruled, championship-wise, by Winston-Salem State University since the red-and-white returned to the fold. Some said their advantage was that from 2006-2010 when they were trying to gain membership into the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) they recruited a better grade of athlete because they were moving from NCAA Division II to D-I. When they returned four years later to the CIAA, it left their athletic programs leaps-and-bounds ahead of the rest of the schools in the league.

Well, the ‘Ram Reign’ may be just about over; and I don’t think the Chowans and Elizabeth City States and Shaws are shedding any tears.

“Winston-Salem State is not the top dog in the CIAA anymore.”


Florida A&M Rattlers’ Baseball Season Comes to an End with 8-1 Loss to #21 Florida Atlantic

GAINESVILLE, Florida – Florida A&M (23-25) watched its’ season come to and end with an 8-1 loss to #21 Florida Atlantic (41-18) in the NCAA Gainesville Regional at McKethan Stadium on Saturday. The Rattlers cut the lead to 2-1 in the fifth inning on Brian Davis’ leadoff home run to right, but was unable to break through with several opportunities in the final four innings. FAU had the leadoff batter reach in each of the final six innings as the Owls added five runs in the top of the ninth inning to put the game out of reach.

Marlon Gibbs went 2-for-3 with a walk on the day and was 3-for-7 in the two games of the Gainesville Regional for FAMU.

Rattler starter Ryan Anderson (1-4) worked 3 1/3 innings and allowed two runs on three hits with three walks and one strikeout. Both runs came on two hits with two walks in the fourth inning.

FAU scored first with a pair of runs in the top of the fourth inning. Brendon Sanger led off the fourth with a single to center and moved to second on a wild pitch. After Ricky Santiago popped up to first, Roman Collins drew a walk to place runners at first and second. Esteban Puerta then doubled to the left center gap to bring home Sanger for the first run of the game. Christian Dicks followed with a walk on five pitches to load the bases with one out. That forced a pitching change as Brandon Fleming came in to pitch for the Rattlers. Collins would come home for the second run of the inning as CJ Chatham reached on a fielder’s choice as he just beat out the throw to first on a double play ball. Fleming would then strikeout Ryan Miller to end the inning.

FAMU cut the lead in half, to 2-1 in the bottom of the fifth inning, as Davis led off the inning by belting his second home run of the season over the fence in right.

Florida Atlantic answered right back in the top of the sixth as Dicks led off with his eighth home run of the season to push its’ lead back to two at 3-1.

The Rattlers had a scoring chance slip away in the bottom of the sixth inning after loading the bases with one out. Peter Jackson reached on a fielding error by Owl second baseman Stephen Kerr and Jared Walker followed with a bunt single to put runners on first and second. A great sacrifice bunt from AJ Elkins moved the runners to second and third, while Gibbs walked on four pitches to load the bases. Still with one out and the bases loaded, Ryan Kennedy fouled out to second base. The Owls then made a pitching change as Devon Carr came in for relief and struck out the first batter he faced, in Davis, as the Rattlers left the bases loaded.

FAMU had another chance in the eighth inning and again wasn’t able to score. Elkins and Gibbs recorded back-to-back singles with one out to put runners on first and second. Kennedy then reached on a fielder’s choice, as Gibbs was out at second, putting runners on the corners with two outs. With runners on the corners and a chance to cut the FAU lead to one, Davis went down swinging to strand the two runners.

Florida Atlantic put the game out of reach with five runs in the top of the ninth inning, including a three-run home run from Puerta for the final score of 8-1.

FAU starter Kyle Miller (7-3) pitched 5 2/3 innings and only allowed one run on three hits with one walk and three strikeouts. Miller retired the first 11 Rattler batters he faced as the first FAMU hit didn’t come until the fourth inning.

The Owls will face the loser of tonight’s Florida/South Florida winner’s bracket game, which is scheduled for a 6:00 PM first pitch.

As always, fans can follow Rattler Baseball on Twitter @FAMUAthletics and live stats will be available via




Coastal Carolina Beats Texas Southern, 4-1, to Stay Alive at NCAA Regional

COLLEGE STATION, Texas -- Andrew Beckwith, making his second career start in as many appearances, produced another outstanding performance to lead second seed and 25th ranked Coastal Carolina to a 4-1 victory versus fourth seed Texas Southern Saturday afternoon in the first elimination game of the NCAA College Station Regional, played at Texas A&M's Blue Bell Park.

Coastal Carolina will now face the loser California and Texas A&M on Sunday at Noon (CT)/1 pm (ET).

Beckwith, who now has 56 appearances in his two years at Coastal, scattered seven hits over a career-high 8.1 innings. He allowed one run in the ninth before exiting the contest to a standing ovation. The sophomore walked one versus Texas Southern and struck out five, which marks his second-best, single-game total in his career. (Beckwith struck out seven in a loss versus Radford on April 7 in 4.0 innings this season.) In his last outing, the Blythewood native led CCU to a 9-3 win in the Big South semifinal versus High Point as he pitched a then career-high 8.0 innings.

Chanticleer shortstop Michael Paez broke the scoreless tie in the top of the third inning as he hit a two-out home run over the left field wall for his eighth round-tripper of the year.

In the fourth, the Chanticleers exploded for three runs to take a 4-0 lead. Zach Remillard and Tyler Chadwick started the frame with back-to-back doubles, the second being an RBI for Chadwick. Jack Curtis then plated Chadwick with an RBI single to right-center field. Anthony Marks capped the scoring in the frame with an RBI single to left field.

Texas Southern avoided the shutout with a run in the ninth. Ryan Lazo hit a leadoff double and Christopher Scroggins walked. Robert Garza followed with an RBI single to bring home Lazo. After a ground out, Beckwith turned the game over to Bobby Holmes. The 2015 Big South Freshman of the Year got a ground out and a fly out to end the game and record his fourth save.

G.K. Young, for the second consecutive game, led CCU's offense by going 2-for-4.

Felix Gomez (4-3) suffered the loss for the Tigers as he allowed five hits and four runs in 3.1 innings



FAMU Rattlers hope to regroup against FAU

Saturday, 1 p.m.: No 2 FAU vs. No. 4 FAMU; TV: ESPN3

TALLAHASSEE, Florida -- Florida A&M’s baseball team isn’t done yet, but it’ll have to improve to survive another game in the double-elimination Gainesville Regional.

The Rattlers were drubbed 19-0 by the No. 4 Florida Gators, and head coach Jamey Shouppe said the team needs to be ready to represent both FAMU (23-24) and the MEAC better when it takes the field against Florida Atlantic (40-18) in the loser’s bracket at 1 p.m. on Saturday.

“It was just too much Florida,” Shouppe said.

“They kept putting the pressure on us. I thought early on we showed a chance to stay in the game. In baseball anything can happen. As the game wore on, it was like the tide coming in. Too much orange and blue.”


Texas Southern Tigers fall to Texas A&M 5-0

COLLEGE STATION, Texas -- Juniors Matt Kent and Andrew Vinson combined on the shutout as the No. 6 Texas A&M Aggies scored a 5-0 win over the Texas Southern Tigers in NCAA College Station Regional Friday evening on Olsen Field at Blue Bell Park. It marked the Aggies’ first NCAA tournament shutout since a 3-0 shutout against Arizona to win the 2011 NCAA College Station Regional.

With the win, Texas A&M (46-11) advances to play the California Golden Bears, winners of a 9-3 contest against Coastal Carolina, on Saturday evening at 6:05 pm.

Kent (8-1) equaled a career-high with his nine strikeouts on the evening. He scattered six hits and one walk on the evening, keeping the Tigers prolific running game under control. Vinson mowed through 2.0 innings, retiring three with strikeouts and inducing a double play in the ninth to erase the only base runner he allowed.

Nick Banks gave the Aggies a lead in the fourth inning when he delivered a full count offering into the visitors bullpen in rightfield for a two-run home run.

Texas Southern starter Ryan Rios (6-2) would keep the Aggies at bay for the remainder of his 6.2 innings of work. He was saddled with the loss allowing two runs on seven hits and one walk while striking out four.

The Aggies were able to take advantage of a couple Tigers errors in the eighth to add insurance runs. Mitchell Nau was hit by the first pitch of the frame and advanced to second base on a wild pitch. Logan Taylor poked a fly ball to rightfield, but an error put runners on the corners. After Nick Banks was caught looking at strike three for the first out of the inning, Taylor stole second base. Hunter Melton dropped a Bermuda Triangle double down the rightfield line to plate Nau. Logan Nottebrok followed with an RBI single through the left side and an error on a grounder by Nick Choruby to second base plated Melton for the 5-0 lead.

Allemand, Banks, Melton and Nau each logged two hits for the Maroon and White.

With the loss, Texas Southern (31-18) moves to an elimination game against Coastal Carolina at 12 pm on Saturday.

Texas Southern (31-18)

Team Notes

- With the loss Texas Southern will face Coastal Carolina tomorrow at 12 p.m. in an elimination game.

- With the loss the Tigers fell to 0-15 all-time against Texas A&M.

- The Tigers finished with 12 strikeouts on the night, their 9th game this season with double-digits whiffs.

- Texas Southern finished 0-for-14 with runners on base and 0-for8 with runners in scoring position.

- After a first inning doubles the Tigers did not record an extra base hit for the remainder of the game.

Individual Notes

- Christopher Scroggins laced a double down the right field line in the top of the first inning, the junior has now reached base in 13 straight games with a base hit in each of the last four games.

- Robert Garza finished with a pair of singles against the Aggies, the shortstop now has 15 multi-hit games this season. DH Kameron Dukes also managed a pair of singles, his third multi-hit outing this year.

- Senior Zach Welz extended his on base streak to 15 games, current leader for the Tigers, reaching with a hit-by-pitch in the third and a walk in the sixth inning.

- Sophomore Ryan Rios was saddled with the loss (6-3) after allowing a pair of earned runs through 6.2 innings of work. The right-hander allowed eight base runners (7 H, 1 BB) on the day, striking our four after facing 28 batters on the evening.

- Relievers Seth Oliver and Larry Romero each tossed .2 innings to close out the Tiger’s pitching efforts on the night. Oliver allowed a pair of hits and three runs (1 ER) while striking out two. Romero allowed a walk while facing four batters.


Florida A&M Snaps Six-Game Win Streak with Loss to #3 Florida in NCAA Regional

GAINESVILLE, Florida -- Florida A&M (23-24) only managed three hits against #3 Florida (45-16) pitching in a 19-0 loss in front of 3,833 fans at McKethan Stadium on Friday night. The NCAA Regional opening round loss snapped a six-game winning streak by the Rattlers. FAMU only had five base runners on three hits, a walk and a hit-by-pitch on the night, with three of them making it to second base. Ricky Page tied a career-high with five strikeouts despite the loss. Rattler pitching hit seven batters on the night, the most hit batters for Florida this season. 13 of the Gators’ runs came over the final four innings.

Rattler starter Ricky Page (2-1) suffered the loss after working 2 1/3 innings and tying a season-high with five strikeouts. Page allowed six runs (three earned) on five hits with three walks and threw 51 pitches.

AJ Elkins, Marlon Gibbs and Ryan Kennedy accounted for FAMU’s three hits.

Florida designated hitter JJ Schwarz had a hot bat as he went 4-for-5 with five RBI and three runs scored. Schwarz hit his 15th home run of the season, a solo shot to left center to led off the sixth inning. Right fielder Jeremy Vasquez was 3-for-3 with a double, RBI and two runs scored.

UF worked the bases loaded with no outs in the bottom of the second inning, but only managed one run for an early 1-0 lead. The bases were loaded after Peter Alonso, Schwarz and Vasquez recorded three straight singles to open the home half of the second inning. Mike Rivera then plated Alonso from third, with a sac fly to right, for the Gators’ first run of the game.

The Gators pushed their lead to 6-0 with five runs (two earned) in the third inning. Florida had the bases loaded again with no outs before Schwarz drew a bases loaded walk to bring home the first run of the inning. Offensively for the Gators in the third, Vasquez and Dalton Guthrie had RBI singles, Rivera had a fielder’s choice RBI and Harrison Bader’s sac fly to right brought home the final run of the inning.

In the top of the fourth inning, FAMU had runners on first and second with two outs, but were unable to score. Elkins singled to left with one out and after Gibbs went down on strikes, Kennedy also singled to left that put runners on first and second. Michael Birdsong then grounded out to first to end the inning.

In the fifth, Florida added three more runs to increase the lead to 9-0. A walk to Vasquez to start the inning and Rivera was hit in the knee by a pitch from Tyler Reker that pulled Rivera from the game as runners were on first and second with no outs. Mark Kolozsvary came in to pinch-run for Rivera at first before both runners moved up on a wild pitch. Bader then roped a two-run single into the left center gap. After Bader stole second, Buddy Reed doubled him home with another ball into the left-center gap for the third run of the inning.

The Gators added two more runs in the sixth to make the score 11-0. Schwarz led off the sixth with his 15th home run of the season into the trees behind the left field wall. Vasquez followed with a double down the right line as Ryan Larson then came in to pinch run for Vasquez at second. Larson moved to third on a fly out to right from Kolozsvary and came home to score on Carl Hicks pinch-hit sac fly to center.

UF would score two runs in the seventh and six runs (five earned) in the eighth for a final score of 19-0.


Florida starter Logan Shore (8-6) earned the win after pitching five shutout innings and threw 58 pitches. Shore allowed just two hits with two strikeouts, one walk and one hit batter.

Florida A&M will face Florida Atlantic (40-18) on Saturday at 1:00 PM in an elimination game of the Gainesville Regional. The game will be televised on ESPN3.

As always, fans can follow Rattler Baseball on Twitter @FAMUAthletics and live stats will be available via

FAMU v. Florida Play-by-Play


Friday, May 29, 2015

Mike Newell hired to coach Dillard Bleu Devils basketball team

NEW ORLEANS, Louisiaba  -- The Dillard University Department of Athletics announced that Mike Newell has been named Bleu Devils head men's basketball coach.

Newell takes over a struggling men's program that produced only two road wins and a total of 15 wins in the last four years. To their credit, the Bleu Devils did make a run to the 2013 Gulf Coast Athletic Conference tournament championship game, shocking inner city rivals Xavier University (quarter-finals) as well as Southern University at New Orleans (semi-finals) in memorable fashion, only to fall to eventual champions Philander Smith College.

"I believe Coach Newell's experience will help take our program to another level. His expertise in recruiting and player skill development make him an excellent fit," said Dillard's athletic director, Dr. Kiki Baker Barnes.

Newell has over 30 years of basketball coaching experience and a track record of reviving struggling programs. He has enjoyed success at every level, as a player and coach. Once a three-year starter at Sam Houston State, he was fortunate enough to be inducted into the school's Hall of Fame in 1991.

"I certainly want to thank Dr. Kimbrough and Dr. Barnes for having faith in me and my abilities and giving me a chance to resurrect this program at such a great university, said Newell. I'm looking forward to the challenge, and we realize it won't be an overnight thing, but we want to build a total basketball program, one that will succeed year in and year out, not just a one year phenomenon," said Newell.

Newell has been a head coach at the University of West Alabama, the University of Arkansas Monticello (UAM), Lamar University, and the University of Arkansas Little Rock (UALR). During his stint at these NCAA Division 1 and 2 programs, he has racked up 320 total wins, has seven 20 win seasons, has seven NCAA/NIT appearances, one Final Four Appearance (NIT), four regular season conference championships, three conference tournament championships, four coach of the year awards, one sweet 16 appearance (NCAA Division II, one regional final (NCAA-Division II) and produced seven 2,000-point scorers.

"Coach Newell is a gifted teacher of the game of basketball and it is obvious how well he taught me," said 2015 GCAC Coach of the Year Matt Cross. "Beyond that, he is a super talented coach and now the only current Louisiana college coach with two NCAA Division 1 tournament wins to his credit. I couldn't be more thrilled for Dillard to land Mike Newell as their new leader," said Cross.

Cross was an assistant under Newell at UAM and currently coaches at Talladega College where he took his team to the NAIA final four this past season. The two coaches look forward to facing one another at least twice a year as both teams reside in the GCAC.


Ram Ramblings: Hayes, former WSSU star, is homeless for 24 hours

WINSTON-SALEM, North Carolina -- William Hayes has always been straight with me in our many conversations about growing up in High Point.

Hayes and his family weren’t rich but they were comfortable.

Hayes, a former WSSU football star who has carved out a niche in the NFL as a pass-rushing specialist with the St. Louis Rams, stepped out his element during the off-season by agreeing to pose as a homeless man in the streets of St. Louis.

The 24 hours he spent on the streets were filmed by ESPN for a feature that will air on SportsCenter on Sunday morning at 10 a.m.

Hayes and fellow teammate, Chris Long, got into costume and then hit the streets. It should be noted that Hayes wore a bucket hat with the WSSU logo on the front. I’m guessing that’s not the best way for the school to get publicity but it’s better than being on SportsCenter for a restroom brawl before a CIAA championship football game.


SIAC Football Fan Attendance Once Again Leads the Country

ATLANTA, Georgia  – The Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (S-I-A-C) once again led the NCAA Division II in football attendance last season. The SIAC has now led all NCAA DII conferences in football attendance for twelve consecutive seasons and for twenty-three of the last twenty-five seasons – dating back to the 1990 season.

"We take great pride our incredible support our fans provide our member schools and student-athletes. The emotional connections which our schools enjoy with their alumni, fans and the communities which they serve is the primary reason our league has led NCAA Division II football attendance twelve consecutive years – and twenty-three of the last twenty-five years," said Gregory Moore, commissioner of the SIAC. "What is important to also bear in mind is that our robust fan support has also been critically important to helping the SIAC to also rank first in NCAA DII by almost every objective digital and social media metric by a fairly wide margin (Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and monthly unique visitors)."

Since 1990, the SIAC led Division II football's average attendance twenty-three times, including totaling 300,000 on seventeen occasions. According to the website, seven SIAC schools ranked in the top thirty in attendance leaders – led by Tuskegee (2nd), Albany State (5th) and Miles (9th) last season.



Rank School G Attendance Average
1. Grand Valley St. 5 58,497 11,699
2. Tuskegee 5 49,799 9,960
3. Pittsburg St. 6 58,878 9,813
4. North Ala. 6 54,389 9,065
5. Albany St. (GA) 3 23,256 7,752
6. Winston-Salem 5 37,609 7,522
7. Northwest Mo. St. 6 44,840 7,473
8. Tarleton St. 3 22,141 7,380
9. Miles 6 44,017 7,336
10. Henderson St. 5 35,904 7,181
11. Midwestern St. 5 35,484 7,097
12. Fort Valley St. 5 33,439 6,688
13. Central Mo. 6 39,444 6,575
14. West Tex. A&M 5 32,874 6,574
15. Colorado St.-Pueblo 8 51,008 6,376

Rank School G Attendance Average
16. Saginaw Valley 6 37,723 6,287
17. Slippery Rock 5 31,056 6,211
18. Tex. A&M-Commerce 6 36,757 6,126
19. Tex. A&M-Kingsville 5 30,567 6,113
20. Lenoir-Rhyne 6 36,553 6,092
21. West Ga. 6 34,796 5,799
22. Indianapolis 5 28,371 5,674
23. Delta St. 6 33,715 5,619
24. Clark Atlanta 6 33,694 5,616
25. Morehouse 3 16,576 5,525
26. Benedict 5 27,613 5,523
27. Virginia Union 6 32,536 5,423
28. Valdosta St. 5 25,735 5,147
29. Shippensburg 5 25,616 5,123
30. Arkansas Tech 5 25,527 5,105

Total 2014 Change

Rank Division II Teams Games Attendance Average In Avg.
1. Southern Intercollegiate# 12 62 388,787 6,271 963
2. Lone Star# 7 38 226,987 5,973 -626
3. Gulf South# 7 39 198,543 5,091 -308
4. Mid-America# 12 67 332,805 4,967 257
5. Great American# 10 53 174,473 3,292 -439
6. South Atlantic 8 41 122,339 2,984 -177
7. Central Intercollegiate 12 59 173,882 2,947 -458
8. Pennsylvania 16 87 248,748 2,859 -62
9. Great Northwest# 7 38 107,566 2,831 70
10. Great Lakes Intercol. 15 83 232,616 2,803 -386
11. Northern Sun 16 92 237,214 2,578 265
12. Rocky Mountain 10 56 131,802 2,354 98
13. Great Lakes Valley# 9 47 101,957 2,169 216
14. Mountain East 10 56 96,024 1,715 -211
15. Northeast-10 10 55 92,585 1,683 -170
Independents 6 32 69,559 2,174 -644

Conference attendance includes home games and neutral site contests between two teams in the same
conference. Independents total includes home game totals and neutral site games between two independent teams.

# Different alignment than in prior year.


The SIAC is a NCAA athletic conference consisting primarily of historically black colleges and universities with headquarters in downtown Atlanta, Georgia. The primary mission and purpose of the SIAC is "to leverage intercollegiate athletics to the benefit of our student-athletes and to advance the overarching strategic interests of SIAC member institutions." The SIAC includes 15 member institutions (Albany State University, Benedict College, Central State University, Claflin University, Clark Atlanta University, Fort Valley State University, Kentucky State University, Lane College, LeMoyne-Owen College, Miles College, Morehouse College, Paine College, Spring Hill College, Stillman College, Tuskegee University) which are located within a contiguous six-state footprint (Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, South Carolina, Tennessee and Ohio). The SIAC sponsors seven men's and six women's sports and is a proud member of the NCAA Division II.


FAMU President Elmira Mangum to Make Four-city Trip to China as Part of Globalization Efforts

TALLAHASSEE, Florida – Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU) President Elmira Mangum, Ph.D., will participate in a four-city tour of China in conjunction with the HBCU-China Scholarship Network.

The tour, set for May 30 - June 6, is a part of Mangum’s ongoing efforts to globalize FAMU. Last November, she traveled to Sao Paolo, Brazil as a part of the HBCU-Brazil Alliance, which focuses on expanding access and opportunities for Brazilians to attend college in the United States. FAMU currently serves students from more than 70 nations and has cooperative agreements with universities and organizations in Africa and India.

The HBCU-China Scholarship Network was initiated in 2013 when the presidents of several HBCUs met with the China Education Association for International Exchange and signed an agreement that acknowledged the initiative set forth by the Congressional Black Caucus and China’s Vice Premier Liu Yandong.

This collaboration between the Chinese government and HBCUs provides an opportunity for students at HBCUs to become competent in Chinese history and culture and will enhance their abilities to be successful in the global economy.

Mangum and delegates from seven other HBCUs will visit Beijing, Nanjing, Ningbo, and Shanghai. The visit is designed to enable administrators to solidify and develop relationships through the HBCU-China Scholarship Network.

“This trip shows the global reach of FAMU and HBCUs,” said Mangum. “Moreover, it demonstrates that HBCUs can provide students with the international experience they will need to compete in the 21st-century global economy. The trip to China goes hand-in-hand with my Passport Program, which is intended to ensure that every student who attends FAMU has a passport before they graduate. Acquiring a passport is the first step to obtaining a global education.”

About FAMU
Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU) is one of the largest single-campus historically Black colleges or universities in the nation. The University blends a strong research focus with a commitment to economic empowerment and community service.

The University was founded in 1887 as the State Normal School for Colored Students. Today, FAMU continues its mission to be a best-in-class, land-grant institution with a global reach that focuses on science, technology, research, engineering, agriculture, and mathematics.

FAMU contributes to a strong workforce by providing a high-quality, affordable education to students from diverse backgrounds.

The CollegeNet and PayScale Social Mobility Index (SMI) have recognized FAMU for its commitment to providing pathways for social and economic mobility. SMI ranks FAMU third among all colleges and universities in the nation for fostering social and economic opportunity. FAMU is also one of the top institutions for providing a high-quality education at an affordable price in Florida, according to The College Database (2013).

U.S. News & World Report lists FAMU as the nation’s top public historically Black college or university (HBCU) for 2015. The University was also recognized among the 2014 U.S. News & World Report “Best National Universities.” It is listed among The Princeton Review’s “Best in the Southeast” colleges for 2015.

For more information about FAMU, visit

UAPB goes into 2015-16 with no APR-related penalties

PINE BLUFF, Arkansas -- For the first time in four years, Arkansas-Pine Bluff has avoided penalties for poor Academic Progress Rates.

Most of the athletic programs at the university have reached the APR benchmark of 930, but none were penalized in any fashion by the NCAA, as the results for all Division I athletic programs were released this week. This also means that no UAPB team faces any postseason ineligibility for any reason going into the 2015-16 school year, now that five of its sports teams have served postseason bans for this school year only for lack-of-institutional control violations separate from APR issues.

Earlier this week, the NCAA publicly cited the women’s tennis team for ranking among the top 10 nationally in its sport in multi-year, or four-year, APRs. The team scored a perfect 1,000.


Davis, former WSSU basketball star, has seen the world


WINSTON-SALEM, North Carolina -- For the first time in his professional basketball career Paul Davis is at a crossroads.

Davis, 27 and a former Winston-Salem State star, is torn between continuing his playing career and pursuing a coaching career.

“Some days I think I’d be fine in a coat and tie and sitting on the bench,” said Davis, a 6-9, shot-blocking machine who has played for eight different teams all over the world. “And then there are other days where I still want to play.”

What has Davis, a 2012 graduate of WSSU, thinking about his post-playing career is that he doesn’t have any solid offers to play abroad. After playing stints in Lithuania, Australia, Ireland, Chile, Saudi Arabia, Colombia and Tunisia he admits to leading a charmed life.



SWAC approves a seven-game football schedule starting in 2017; Annual Spring Meetings Completed

NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana -- The annual Southwestern Athletic Conference Spring Meetings concluded Thursday in New Orleans as the league office hosted the Council of Presidents and Chancellors, Athletics Directors, Senior Woman Administrators, Faculty Athletics Representatives, Director of Bands and various corporate partners for its 10 member institutions and the upcoming 2015-16 season.

The meetings launched on Tuesday with administrators discussing key topics, including the all new Celebration Bowl, gender equity, scheduling, revenue distribution and strategic planning.

The conference approved a new seven game conference football schedule starting with the 2017 season. The league’s current format is a nine game schedule.

The SWAC baseball regular season series will now be a Friday, Saturday and Sunday format migrating from the Saturday/Sunday layout. This goes into effect for the 2016 season.

In an effort to address the Academic Progress Report (APR) issues, academic support staff at member institutions will be required to become members of the National Association of Academic Advisors for Athletics (N4A).

Sites for conference championships and tournaments were determined for 2015-16. The SWAC Football Championship has been set for December 5, while the 2016 SWAC Basketball Tournament is scheduled for March 8-12. Both will be held in Houston, Texas at NRG Stadium and the Toyota Center respectively.

The first official event of the 2015-16 year begins with the SWAC Football Media Day which is slated for July 17 in Birmingham, Alabama.



11th Annual MEAC/SWAC Challenge – September 6 - Orlando, Florida

Basketball Tip-Off Media Teleconference – October 14 – Via Teleconference

Cross Country - October 26 - Clinton, Mississippi

Volleyball Tournament - November 20-22 – Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Football Championship - December 5 – Houston, Texas

Celebration Bowl – December 19th – Atlanta, Georgia

Indoor Track and Field Championship – February 20-21 – Birmingham, Alabama

Basketball Tournament – March 8-12 – Houston, Texas

Bowling Championship – March 25 – 27 – Arlington, Texas

Tennis Tournament – April 15 – 17 – New Orleans, Louisiana

Golf Championship – April 18 – 20 – Alexandria, Louisiana

Softball Tournament - May 4 – 7 - Decatur, Alabama

Outdoor Track and Field Championship – TBA - Huntsville, Alabama - TBA

Baseball Tournament – May 18 – 22 – New Orleans, Louisiana



Marlon Gibbs, FAMU Rattlers ready to face Florida Gators

Friday, May 29, 2015
Game 1: South Florida vs. Florida Atlantic – 1:00 PM (ESPN3)
Game 2: Florida A&M vs. Florida – 7:00 PM (SEC Network)

GAINESVILLE, Florida -- When looking for Marlon Gibbs in the dugout, it might be best to bring a picture for reference.

Florida A&M's soft-spoken outfielder doesn't do too much to draw attention to himself when he's sitting down. He'll sit, give words of encouragement to his teammates and wait for his chance on the field.

Once he's on the field, everyone knows exactly who he is. He's the one helping to set the tone for the Rattlers' offense, which recently lit up the MEAC tournament with 38 hits and 26 runs.

"I just try to stay humble," Gibbs said.


Saint Augustine's Shaw brings home NCAA title, Makes Daddy Proud

 David Shaw Jr. won his first individual national championship
on Friday in the triple jump at the NCAA Division II Outdoor
Track and Field Championships in Allendale, Michigan. 
St. Pauls native leaped a career-best 51 feet, 11 inches
 on his first jump to claim the title.
CIAA |Contributed photo
ST. PAULS, North Carolina — On Friday afternoon, David Shaw Sr. was sitting in his backyard, waiting to receive a call from his son, D.J., who was competing at the NCAA Division II Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Allendale, Michigan.

When Shaw Sr. finally got the call from his 22-year-old son, there was a brief moment of silence on the other end.

“He sort of paused on me,” Shaw Sr. said. “Then finally he went to laughing and said, ‘Daddy, I won nationals.’

“We probably talked about 20 more minutes and I couldn’t have been prouder.”

David Shaw Jr., or D.J. as he’s commonly known, won the D2 men’s national championship in the triple jump at Grand Valley State University, his first individual title as a member of the Saint Augustine’s University track and field team.

“I couldn’t believe it, it was one of the best feelings ever,” said D.J., who leaped a career-best 51 feet, 11 inches on his first jump to claim the victory. “All I could do was thank God for opportunity. It’s every college athlete’s dream to win a national title.”

The St. Pauls native secured 10 points for the Falcons en route to the school’s third consecutive national team championship on Saturday, making D.J. a five-time national champion. The win also gave legendary coach George Williams his 36th national title, which is the most NCAA track and field championships for any coach, regardless of division.

Shaw Sr., a legendary track coach in his own right after 33 seasons at St. Pauls High School, ran track for Williams at Saint Augustine’s. That made his son’s national title even more special.


Thursday, May 28, 2015

UMES Recognized for MEAC's Highest Graduation Success Rate for 6th Straight Year

MIAMI, Florida -- The University of Maryland Eastern Shore has been recognized by the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference for having the league's highest graduation success rate (GSR) for the sixth consecutive year. UMES earned an 88% Graduation Success Rate for student-athletes that competed from 2004 to 2007.

It is a great honor to win this award for the sixth straight athletic season," said UMES athletic director Keith Davidson. "It shows how successful our athletic program has truly been. The graduation success our student-athletes have had shows the quality of people we are recruiting and that the university is doing its part in preparing student-athletes for life after college."

UMES earned the highest GSR among MEAC members from 1999-2002, with a 77% GPR, and 2000-2003, with an 84% GSR. In 2001-2004 they had a 90% GSR, in the 2002-2005 and 2003-2006 cohort, they posted an 89% rate both years.

The GSR measures graduation rates at Division I institutions as well as those transferring into those schools, according to the NCAA. The rate was created to reflect mobility of college students in graduation data.

In addition to the recognition, UMES was presented a check for $25,000 from the MEAC for the achievement.

At the reception where UMES was recognized, the conference also announced the All-Sports Award winners. Hampton University won its 14th-straight Mary McLeod Bethune Women's All-Sports Award while Bethune-Cookman University won its second straight Talmadge Layman Hill Men's Award.

The All-Sports Award highlights the overall strengths of the conference's men's and women's athletic programs. Each winning institution was presented with a $20,000 check during a reception at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in South Beach, Miami on Wednesday evening, May 27.

With the resurgence of men's basketball and baseball, and strong outings from track and field, including the men's cross-country championship, the Hawk's men's teams skyrocketed up the standings for the Talmadge Layman Hill Men's Award. UMES took second place overall to the Wildcats, posting 75 total points, trailing the 86.2 amassed by Bethune-Cookman. The Hawks scored in double figures in all three track disciplines, baseball and basketball, posting no sport tally worse than eight points. The conference awards 14 points for a first-place finish, second earns 12 points and so on down the line. Tied teams split the totals. UMES and Bethune-Cookman were the only two programs to amass more than 69 points.

Last season the men were fifth overall and in 2012-13 they were last at 13th, showing the leaps the program has made in just a short period of time.

On the women's side the Hawks took seventh overall in a more closely contested category. They tallied 73.5 points, getting double figure production from cross-country, volleyball and bowling, who won their eighth MEAC title in March. No UMES program scored lower than 6.5 points meaning no program finished worse than eighth place out of the 13 conference schools. They missed sixth place by just 1.5 points. Hampton won with 94 points.

"I think this speaks to the commitment of our department in all of our core values. Academics is the priority and we have shown that year in and year out. Now athletics are taking shape and we are seeing meaningful progress across the board in all of our sports," said Davidson. "Those two areas along with our efforts in the community are what are key for us to producing student-athletes who are productive members of society beyond their time in Princess Anne."


Hampton University and Bethune-Cookman selected as the MEAC 2015 All-Sports Award Winners

2014-2015 Talmadge Layman Hill Men's Award: Bethune-Cookman

MIAMI, Florida -- Hampton University won its 14th consecutive Mary McLeod Bethune Women’s All-Sports Award and Bethune-Cookman recorded its second straight Talmadge Layman Hill Men’s Award, the conference announced on Wednesday.

The All-Sports Award highlights the overall strengths of the conference’s men’s and women’s athletic programs. Each institution was presented with a $20,000 check during a reception at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in South Beach, Miami on Wednesday evening.

“I would like to congratulate Bethune-Cookman University including President Dr. Edison Jackson, Director of Athletics Lynn Thompson, and the administrators, coaches, student-athletes and support staff for winning the 2015 Talmadge Layman Hill Award,” said MEAC Commissioner Dennis Thomas. “I also extend congratulations to Hampton University and President Dr. William R. Harvey, Director of Athletics Eugene Marshall and all of the outstanding individuals including staff, coaches and student-athletes who were involved in the women’s programs winning the Mary McLeod Bethune Award.

The University of Maryland Eastern Shore was recognized during the reception as the 2014 recipient of the MEAC Highest Graduation Success Rate (GSR) for the sixth straight year. In addition to the recognition, UMES was presented a check for $25,000. UMES’ 88-percent GSR is the highest among MEAC institutions spanning the 2004-07 cohorts.

2014-2015 Mary McLeod Bethune Women's All-Sports Award: Hampton
Hampton’s women’s programs totaled 94 points in the All-Sports tally. The Lady Pirates won conference titles in Indoor Track and Field and Women’s Basketball. Hampton also finished second as conference runners-up in Outdoor Track and Field.

Bethune-Cookman and Florida A&M finished tied for second place with 88.5 points. This is the third straight year that the Lady Rattlers athletic programs have finished second in the tally. North Carolina A&T State finished third (78 points) and Norfolk State edged out Morgan State by five-tenths of a point to finish fourth respectively.

Bethune-Cookman continues to strengthen its men’s programs, totaling 86.2 points to secure its second overall All-Sports trophy. The Wildcats earned a share of the football title and finished first in Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field. B-CU also garnered runners-up finishes in men’s tennis, golf and baseball.

Maryland Eastern Shore finished second on the men’s side with 75 total points and North Carolina A&T State and North Carolina Central finished tied for third with 68.7 total points. Hampton concluded the season fourth (63.5) and Florida A&M (62) rounded out the top five finishers.

Points are awarded in a descending order beginning with 14 points for champions or first place regular season finishes. The second place team receives 12 points. Tied teams split the point total.

The Mary McLeod Bethune and Talmadge Layman Hill Awards

The Mary McLeod Bethune Award, named after the founder of Bethune-Cookman College, awards the top overall women’s athletic program during the course of one full academic year. The first Mary McLeod Bethune award was giving in 1987 to Delaware State University. Hampton leads all MEAC schools with 14 Women’s Awards. The men’s All-Sports Award is named after the late Talmadge Layman Hill, a former player and coach at Morgan State, and former Chairman of the MEAC Steering and Planning Committee, as well as the conference’s first President. Howard University was the recipient of the first Talmadge Layman Hill Award in 1972. South Carolina State holds the men’s record with 11 awards from 1973-84.


Culver column: FAMU's baseball turnaround shows athletic program's potential

GAINESVILLE, Florida -- Like it or not, right now, Florida A&M's baseball team is the flagship program of the school.

The Rattlers, MEAC champions for the first time since 1994, are in the middle of a baseball renaissance. After back-to-back seven-win seasons, Florida A&M is 49-49 since the 2013-14 season with a MEAC title and a 4-3 win over the Florida Gators.

Let's just think about that for a second.

The baseball team is .500 over the last two years. No other team in FAMU's athletic program can match it. No other team can say it brought down a nationally-ranked program. No other team has 16 members of the 2015 MEAC Commissioner's All-Academic Team.

The wins and academics were there last season, and now the national spotlight is there, too.

That's not to say the softball and women's track programs — both MEAC champions — are not feathers in FAMU's cap. They're strong teams and have been strong teams for awhile.


5 benefits from FAMU's regional berth

TALLAHASSEE, Florida -- Florida A&M head coach said tallying wins over his first two season as head coach has helped immensely with recruiting after the Rattlers had to suffer through back-to-back seven-win seasons before he arrived.

1. Recruiting

The Rattlers are 49-49 with a MEAC title — the team's first since 1994 — with Shouppe at the helm.

"Players want to be a part of a winning culture," Shouppe said.

"We've been able to turn the tide a little bit and start winning a few more ball games. We don't have a whole lot of scholarship money for this year to recruit with. But we're getting some walk-ons, kids that want to be part of what we're trying to do, that are coming to the program.

"Those walk-ons may be better than some of the kids we've got on scholarship."

Before leaving for the NCAA tournament, Shouppe told members of the 220 Quarterback Club, a group of FAMU sports enthusiasts, had had more recruits visiting the school in the coming weeks.


Florida, FAU, South Florida, Florida A&M: Gainesville Regional Preview


4. Florida A&M Rattlers (23-23, MEAC automatic)

Florida A&M comes into the Gainesville Regional at the MEAC Champion with a 23-23 record. The Rattlers finished 15-9 in the conference to receive a regional bid for the first time in program history. Head coach coach Jamey Shouppe will have his hands full with an opening game against a national power in Florida, a game with David and Goliath overtones.

FAMU hit .261 as a team, hit 20 home runs and stole 47 bases in 58 attempts, led by Jared Walker (.324/.444/.423) and Marlon Gibbs (.311, 30 RBI, 15 SB).

Having seen FAMU earlier this year in a three game series against USF, don’t be surprised to see coach Shouppe make frequent pitching changes with nine pitchers on the roster that have logged 21 innings or more.

FAMU has an opportunity to measure their program against four of Florida’s more established programs.

Top Hitters:


Grambling women’s hoops hit with APR penalties

GRAMBLING, Louisiana -- Just when Grambling’s men’s basketball team found its way out of an Academic Progress Rating mess that has hindered the program for the past several years, the women’s hoops team was hit with APR penalties of their own Wednesday.

The NCAA announced the Lady Tigers are among 13 teams hit with Level One APR penalties, which is described as losing “four hours and one day of practice time per week in season.”

Grambling’s APR had been going strong with recent marks of 956 in 2012-13, 977 in 2011-12 and 972 in 2010-11, but that number dipped to 918 in 2013-14. Teams are subject to penalty with anything below 930.

“We’re coming up with a game plan to be able to address these issues so they don’t come up with these issues in the future,” Grambling coach Nadine Domond said. “At the end of the day, this matters and we want to make sure we’re not in that situation.”


Alcorn basketball hit with postseason ban

LORMAN, Mississippi -- Academic trouble is leading to athletic trouble for Alcorn State and a few other schools in the Southwestern Athletic Conference.

Alcorn’s men’s basketball team received a postseason ban for the 2015-16 season when its Academic Progress Report score stayed below the NCAA’s threshold of 930 for the second consecutive year.

APR measures the academic progress of student-athletes. Every Division I team is scored, with student-athletes earning one point each semester they remain eligible and one point for staying in school or graduating.

Teams are subject to NCAA penalties if their multi-year APR falls below 930. Alcorn’s basketball team had a score of 893 in 2012-13, and 839 for 2013-14. The latter is the academic year this year’s APR is based on.

The low APR made Alcorn’s basketball team eligible for a level two penalty, which includes restrictions on practice time and a postseason ban.

No other athletic programs at Alcorn State were sanctioned. The football program, which had a 915 APR in 2012-13, raised that to 931 in 2013-14.