Sunday, April 30, 2017

Augusta Wins Third Consecutive MEAC Championship, Receives Berth To NCAA Tournament

SAVANNAH, Georgia – The Augusta University men's golf team won the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) Championship for the third year in a row, after shooting 43-under par across three days at Crosswinds Golf Club. Augusta finished round three 21-under par and won the event by 36 strokes to receive an automatic qualifying bid to the NCAA Tournament.

The NCAA Division I men's golf selection show will air on Thursday, May 4 at 12:00 p.m. on Golf Channel.
Augusta head coach Jack O'Keefe was named the MEAC's Most Outstanding Coach for the third straight year and Augusta senior Emmanuel Kountakis was named the Most Outstanding Performer.
The Jaguars nearly swept the All-Tournament Team, occupying the top four spots on the individual leaderboard.
Ranked No. 50 in the nation, Augusta turned in four scores in the 60s. Kountakis won the tournament 15-under par with his second-straight 66 (-6) and junior Broc Everett also turned his tourney-best with a 66 (-6) to take second (-12).
Senior Jake Marriott fired a 5-under 67 to notch third place 9-under par, freshman Gustav Andersson posted his best round of the week with a 68 (-4) to end 7-under par, and senior Viktor Edin earned seventh overall with a round-three 71 (-1) to finish two shots under par.
Behind Augusta, the Wildcats finished second in the team standings with an 857 (292-285-280), while Savannah State was third at a 32-over 896 (300-306-290) and North Carolina Central (298-307-301=906) was fourth.
Hampton (302-310-305=917), Florida A&M (314-304-305=923) and Maryland Eastern Shore (331-326-313=970) rounded out the seven-team field.
Outstanding Performer: Emmanuel Kountakis, Augusta University

Outstanding Coach: Jack O'Keefe, Augusta University
All-Tournament Team
Emmanuel Koutakis, Augusta University
Broc Everett, Augusta University
Jake Marriott, Augusta University
Gustav Andersson, Augusta University
Christian Hovstadius, Bethune-Cookman


Former Texas Southern wide receiver Derrick Griffin gets shot with Minnesota Vikings

HOUSTON, Texas -- Former Texas Southern wide receiver Derrick Griffin knew his NFL Draft experience would begin when the actual NFL Draft ended.

The 6-6, 240-pounder went undrafted this weekend but is invited to the Minnesota Vikings' rookie minicamp on a tryout basis.

He has a shot. It's all he ever wanted.

"I just wanted a shot," Griffin said. "That's all. I got the shot. Now it's on me to be Derrick Griffin. Be me."

Being Griffin means being a force on the football field and basketball court.

He was a dual-sport star at TSU, leading the SWAC with 11 touchdown catches as a freshman in 2015 and nabbing a SWAC Player of the Year, Defensive Player of the Year and Newcomer of the Year honor after becoming a double-double machine on the court.


Gold Rush in familiar position: No. 2 in NAIA rankings

NEW ORLEANS — Xavier University of Louisiana has made it 7-for-7 this season as the No. 2 team in the NAIA Men's Tennis Coaches' Top 25 Poll.

The Gold Rush — 11-5 after a 4-3 Monday victory at the University of New Orleans — once again are ranked behind three-time defending national champion Georgia Gwinnett, which is a unanimous No. 1 for the 26th consecutive poll.

XULA possesses the longest active NAIA streak of men's tennis top-25 appearances: 84. The streak began April 4, 2007.

The victory against UNO was XULA's third in a row against an NAIA Division I opponent and the finale of the regular season.

For the first time in seven years, the Gold Rush will not compete in an NAIA unaffiliated group qualifying tournament. However, XULA is expected to receive one of nine at-large bids to the NAIA National Championships at Mobile, Ala., due to its high national ranking — built on the strength of six victories against ranked opponents, four in the top 10.

Upcoming NAIA announcements: next coaches poll May 7, the 24 men's teams that qualified for nationals May 8 and the seedings and bracket May 9. The tournament's first round — eight dual matches — will begin May 16. The final round will be May 20.

The Gold Rush's current ranking would earn it a first-round bye at nationals, and the XULA men would play their first tournament match May 17 in the round of 16.

NAIA Men's Tennis Coaches' Top 25 Poll
(first-place votes in parentheses — records through April 23)

Rank Team Record Points Last
1 Georgia Gwinnett (12) 19-0 312 1
2 XULA 10-5 302 2
3 Keiser 18-4 292 3
4 Northwestern Ohio 19-1 282 4
5 Lindsey Wilson 15-5 272 5
6 William Carey 17-5 261 6
7 Arizona Christian 15-12 244 7
8 William Woods 11-5 243 8
9 Campbellsville 17-3 238 9
10 Cardinal Stritch 14-5 219 10
11 Mobile 22-4 215 11
12 Westmont 13-7 205 12
13 San Diego Christian 6-10 188 13
14 Coastal Georgia 14-7 187 14
15 Reinhardt 10-5 167 15
16 Middle Georgia 9-8 163 16
17 Aquinas 16-6 152 17
18 SCAD Atlanta 10-3 139 18
19 Olivet Nazarene 11-6 125 20
20 SCAD Savannah 8-8 122 21
21 McPherson 8-3 106 22
22 Cumberland 6-5 94 24
23 Tennessee Wesleyan 10-3 86 23
24 Lawrence Tech 18-5 82 RV
25 St. Thomas (Fla.) 5-10 71 25

Dropped from rankings: No. 19 Cornerstone
Others receiving votes: Asbury 37, Warner 33, Davenport 27, Missouri Valley 26, Cumberlands 19, Bethany (Kan.) 17, Cornerstone 13, Judson (Ill.) 8, Marian (Ind.) 8, Lewis-Clark State 4, Point 3

Ed Cassiere, Sports Information Director

Gold Nuggets climb one place to No. 8 in coaches poll

NEW ORLEANS — For the fourth time in the last five polls, Xavier University of Louisiana has climbed in the NAIA Women's Tennis Coaches' Top 25 — this time from ninth to eighth.

The Gold Nuggets (7-13) closed their regular season Saturday with an 8-1 home victory against LSU-Alexandria, which climbed from 11th to ninth. The top-10 appearance is XULA's fourth this season and its 29th all-time.

XULA's current streak of top-25 appearances is 46. The streak began May 1, 2012.

The Gold Nuggets for the second straight year will not compete in an NAIA unaffiliated group qualifying tournament. However, they are expected to receive one of nine at-large bids to the NAIA National Championships at Mobile, Ala., due to their high national ranking and five victories against ranked opponents.

Upcoming NAIA announcements: next coaches poll May 7, the 24 women's teams that qualified for nationals May 8 and the seedings and bracket May 9. The tournament's first round — eight dual matches — will begin May 16. The final round will be May 20.

NAIA Women's Tennis Coaches' Top 25 Poll
(first-place votes in parentheses — records through April 23)

Rank Team Record Points Last
1 Georgia Gwinnett (12) 21-0 312 1
2 Lindsey Wilson 17-4 302 2
3 SCAD Savannah 12-3 292 3
4 Keiser 12-7 280 4
5 Northwestern Ohio 17-5 270 5
6 San Diego Christian 15-3 257 6
7 William Carey 13-3 254 8
8 XULA 7-13 240 9
9 LSU-Alexandria 15-3 224 11
10 Mobile 22-4 218 10
11 William Woods 8-9 217 7
12 Indiana Wesleyan 30-7 208 12
13 Cardinal Stritch 11-5 193 13
14 Arizona Christian 17-8 182 14
15 Cumberlands 14-7 174 15
16 Lewis-Clark State 7-13 156 18
17 Middle Georgia 13-8 153 16
18 Davenport 12-9 141 17
19 Olivet Nazarene 9-10 133 19
20 SCAD Atlanta 10-6 122 20
21 Campbellsville 10-7 115 21
22 St. Thomas (Fla.) 4-10 88 22
23 McPherson 8-2 85 23
24 Reinhardt 11-4 84 24
25 Georgetown (Ky.) 16-6 69 RV

Dropped from rankings: No. 25 Cumberland
Others receiving votes: Marian (Ind.) 62, Cumberland 47, Coastal Georgia 45, Tennessee Wesleyan 29, Brenau 17, Southwestern (Kan.) 5, Southeastern (Fla.) 5, Missouri Valley 4, Asbury 3

Ed Cassiere, Sports Information Director

Oakland Raider Select Alabama State Jylan Ware In Seventh Round Of 2017 NFL Draft

OAKLAND, California -- The Oakland Raiders have selected tackle Jylan Ware in the seventh round of the 2017 NFL Draft.

-Was not recognized by SWAC all-conference teams.

-was not a combine invitee.

-Took part in College Gridirion Showcase and HBCU Spirit Bowl for post-season showcases.

-Part of the O-line that helped Hornets lead the SWAC in rushing in 2013, 2014, and 2016.

Off The Field
-Earned bachelor’s degree in rehabilitation services in December.

-Played under two head coaches at ASU, Brian Jenkins for his final two seasons and former NFL WR Reggie Barlow for his early seasons.

-Mom, Tammie, is a single mother. Father is Alfred Ware.

2016 – Senior
-Started all 12 games he played.

-Helped pave the way for All-SWAC RB Khalid Thomas to rank #2 in conference with 1,237 yards rushing.

-Hornets led SWAC in team rushing offense.

-Team struggled to an 0-4 start but rebounded to go 4-4 in final eight games of the season.
2015 – Junior

-Started all 11 games he played.

-Team went 6-5 in first season under Brian Jenkins.

-Team capped season with win over Alabama A&M in Magic City Classic.

-Named to SWAC pre-season all-conference team.
2014 – Sophomore

-Started 10 of 11 games he played.

-Team led SWAC in rushing, averaging 228 yards per game on the ground and a total of 436 yards of total offense per game.

-Averaged over 30 points per game.

-Team went 7-5 in Reggie Barlow’s final season as head coach.

2013 – Freshman
-Played in two games on the season – seeing action against Grambling and Stillman.
2012 – Redshirt

-Sat out season as a redshirt.

-Standout in football and basketball at Valley, AL High.


Saturday, April 29, 2017

Indianapolis Colts' 2017 draft picks:Round 4, No. 144 overall: Grover Stewart, DT, Albany State

INDIANAPOLIS, Indiana -- My take: Depth and competition has been the theme that GM Chris Ballard has consistently talked about. The addition of defensive lineman Grover Stewart does that on a defensive line that already features the likes of Al Woods, Johnathan Hankins, David Parry, Henry Anderson and Kendall Langford. The Colts want to be able to wear teams down by the fourth quarter by consistently rotating fresh bodies into the game.

How he fits: Grover finished his career at Albany State, a Division II school, with 23.5 sacks and 43 tackles while being named to the All-SIAC team all four years. The Colts believe Grover has the tools to play defensive and nose tackle on a defensive line that finished 25th in the NFL against the run last season.


Arizona Cardinals' 2017 draft picks:Round 3, No. 98: Chad Williams, WR, Grambling

GLENDALE, Arizona  --  My take: This could be the receiver the Cardinals needed to find in this year's draft. At 6-foot-1, 204 pounds, he was a second-team FCS All-American last season after he caught 90 passes for 1,337 yards and 11 touchdowns, leading the Southwestern Athletic Conference in every category. Arians said a “top-round” receiver wasn't necessary, and he was right. Given Williams' size and intangibles, he looks as though he'll be able to fill the void left by Michael Floyd. He might need to add some weight and learn to play better with a defensive back hanging on him. But Williams has speed -- he ran a low 4.4-second 40-yard dash, according to Keim -- and size, making him the ideal Arians receiver.

How he fits: If Williams can adjust to the NFL quickly, he can be the ideal complement to Larry Fitzgerald, John Brown, J.J. Nelson and Jaron Brown. Williams can be an option for quarterback Carson Palmer deep along the sideline and someone who can take advantage of mismatches against smaller defensive backs, particularly as he stretches the field. Keim expects Williams to go through a rough patch while adjusting to the NFL -- most, if not all, players from small schools do -- but he could be the player to round out Arizona's receiving corps and help the unit put up 2015-esque numbers.


Chicago Bears Take North Carolina A&T Elusive Running Back Tarik Cohen in 4th Round of 2017 NFL Draft

CHICAGO, Illinois -- With Jordan Howard in the fold, running back was not a major area of need for the Chicago Bears heading into the 2017 NFL Draft. That being said, they just took a shot on an exciting player at the position, as they drafted Tarik Cohen in the fourth round.

Cohen was an explosive back at North Carolina A&T who showed ridiculous speed and quickness with the ball in his hands. For his amazing change of direction quickness, Tarik was nicknamed the “Human Joystick.” Simply put, this guy can make anyone miss in the open field.
Cohen clearly has ridiculous elusiveness and has the speed to take it to the house from anywhere on the field. He is also a strong receiver out of the backfield and should be a great change of pace back to compliment Howard.

I projected Cohen as a possible target for the Chicago Bears over a month ago. I think this explanation from that post helps give us an idea of Cohen as a player.

An extremely slippery and elusive runner, Cohen is ridiculously difficult to bring down in open space. He has fantastic short area quickness and elite-level start-and-stop ability. Also, despite being so small, Cohen is a relatively compact runner who has a bit of power behind his pads. He did a great job of bursting through arm tackles in college.


XULA sweeps four GCAC Player of the Week awards

NEW ORLEANS — Xavier University of Louisiana swept all four Gulf Coast Athletic Conference Player of the Week awards for April 17-23. The GCAC announced Tuesday that XULA's recipients are:

• Women's field: Drew Chatters (junior from Lake Charles, La./St. Louis Catholic High School), who won the javelin at the GCAC Championships for the third consecutive year Saturday. Chatters broke the GCAC meet record for the second time; she did it on her final throw (36.90 meters/121 feet, 1 inch).

• Women's track: Brianna Pace (sophomore from Junction City, Kan./Junction City High School), who scored in five events at the GCAC meet and led the league-champion Gold Nuggets with 26 points. Pace placed second in the 800-meter run (2:29.33) and 3,200 relay (10:32.98), third in the 1,500 (5:22.86) and 5,000 (22:14.58) and fourth in the 3,000 steeplechase (13:47.90). She was all-conference in four events by virtue of top-3 finishes.

• Men's field: Keairez Coleman (sophomore from Harrisville, Miss./Mendenhall High School), who became the first XULA male since 2004 to win the triple jump at the GCAC meet. His mark of 14.19 meters (46 feet, 6 3/4 inches) is a PR and the fourth longest in the history of the meet. His marks in the long jump (6.55m/21-6, fourth place) and shot put were season bests.

• Women's tennis: Charlene Goreau (sophomore from Toulouse, France/Raymond Naves School), who won in singles and doubles on the first court against ranked opponents and dropped just two games along the way in the Gold Nuggets' 8-1 home victory Saturday against NAIA No. 11 LSU-Alexandria. Goreau beat the ITA's No. 33 NAIA singles player, Sara Andrade, 6-1, 6-0 and teamed with Emma Kranendonk to defeat No. 12 Andrade and Gisela Amor 8-1.

The GCAC awards are the second of the season and fourth of Coleman's career and the fifth of the season and the eighth of Goreau's career. Pace is a first-time winner in track — she won three cross country awards in 2015 — and Chatters won for the first time this season and the third time in her career.

XULA's track teams will compete Friday and Saturday in the Southern Miss Open at Hattiesburg, Miss. Both tennis teams have concluded their regular seasons and are expected to receive at-large bids to next month's NAIA National Championships at Mobile, Ala.

Ed Cassiere, Sports Information Director

Gold Nuggets win GCAC title for 4th time in 5 years

NEW ORLEANS — Xavier University of Louisiana, with 20-of-24 athletes scoring Saturday, won the Gulf Coast Athletic Conference women's outdoor track and field championship at Tad Gormley Stadium for the fourth time in five years.

The Gold Nuggets produced 183 points with the help of five first-place finishes, six seconds and seven thirds. Premeet favorite Edward Waters was second with 177 points, and SUNO was third with 124. Dillard, the 2016 champion, was fourth with 118 points.

XULA freshmen Taylor Price and Ry-Anne Riley both scored a pair of first-place finishes. Price won the 1,500-meter run (5 minutes, 18.73 seconds) and the 5,000 (21:02.54). Riley won the long jump (5.36 meters/17 feet, 7 inches) and anchored the 400 relay team to its first-ever victory in this meet.

Riley and sophomores Martina WrightAlexis Milton and Janelle Jones combined for a season-best and NAIA A-qualifying time of 47.25 in the relay.

Drew Chatters won the javelin for the third consecutive year and broke her GCAC meet record with a throw of 36.90 meters (121-1). Chatters set the previous mark of 35.48 meters (116-5) in 2015.

Dionysia Love repeated as 3,000 steeplechase champion (13:21.35).

A critical event in determining the women's team championship was the high jump, where top-seeded Davia Chin of Edward Waters passed on the first five heights, then missed all three of her attempts at 1.57 meters (5-1 3/4) — a height she cleared or surpassed in five meets this season. All three of the Lady Tigers failed to clear a height, and XULA collected 14 points with a 2-3 finish from Chinyere Jones and Terri Cunningham.

Ariane Williams set a XULA record of 56.63 seconds in the 400 and placed fifth.

XULA's Joseph Moses was voted women's GCAC Coach of the Year by his peers. It was Moses' third conference team championship of 2016-17; he led XULA to GCAC men's and women's cross country titles in October.

Edward Waters scored a meet-record 303 points to win the men's team title for the third straight year and the fifth time in six years. Dillard was second with 149 points, followed by SUNO with 120 and XULA with 34. Gold Rush sophomore Keairez Colemanwon the triple jump — his mark of 14.19 meters (46-6 3/4) is No. 4 all-time in this meet — and freshman teammates Khalil Gallien and Oji Wells both scored in three events.

Ed Cassiere, Sports Information Director

NAIA power Rush win 3rd straight vs. NCAA Division I

NEW ORLEANS — For the fourth time in its last five attempts, Xavier University of Louisiana has defeated the University of New Orleans in men's tennis.

Tushar Mandlekar and Karan Salwan won in doubles and singles, and Antoine Richard and Moses Micheal saved the doubles point in the Gold Rush's 4-3 victory at UNO Monday.

XULA (11-5), ranked second in the NAIA, snapped a 2-dual losing streak but won its third in a row against an NCAA Division I opponent. It was the Gold Rush regular-season finale; next will be a May 17 dual match in the second round of the NAIA National Championship at Mobile, Ala. The NAIA will announce the 24 qualifying teams May 8 and the pairings and seedings May 9.

"Our coaching staff conducted a team meeting yesterday to air some things out, and the guys responded well today," XULA coach Alan Green said. "We got off to a good start in doubles, and the momentum carried over to singles. I give the guys full credit for the way they handled their business."

UNO led 3-2 before Salwan tied the dual with a 7-6 (7-1), 6-4 victory against Federico Staksrud on the third court — Salwan's ninth victory in 10 singles decisions this spring. Mandlekar clinched on court five with a 7-5, 7-5 victory against Luis Albuquerque.

Mandlekar and Salwan put the Gold Rush in position to win the doubles point with a 6-2 victory against Albuquerque and Giacomo Adoncecchi. Richard and Micheal saved a match point in the tiebreaker and clinched the doubles point with a 7-6 (8-6) victory against Staksrud and Federico Boscarino.

The other XULA victory was on court four, where Catalin Fifea beat Nicolas Kramer 6-3, 6-3 and won for the 10th time in his last 11 singles decisions.

The Privateers (7-12), headed to Beaumont, Texas, this weekend for the Southland Conference Tournament, dropped their third in a row.


Ed Cassiere, Sports Information Director

Friday, April 28, 2017

FAMU basketball coaching search includes big names

TALLAHASSEE, Florida -- Florida A&M hasn't yet named a men's basketball coach, but there certainly isn't a lack of applicants.

FAMU on Wednesday closed the application for the job after it was reopened on Monday. The job’s original posting date was March 21, four days after it was announced then-head coach Byron Samuels’ contract would not be renewed.

A list of names obtained by the Tallahassee Democrat reveals 122 candidates applied to be FAMU's next head coach. Their experience levels range from assistant coach at the JUCO level to NBA champions.

One name is former NBA player and current Buffalo assistant Lindsey Hunter. The two-time NBA champion was the interim head coach for the Phoenix Suns and was also an assistant for the Golden State Warriors.

Another name is current Savannah State head coach Horace Broadnax. Savannah State's athletic department recently announced it will drop down to Division II. Broadnax has had plenty of success in the MEAC. He lead the Tigers to a 14-2 conference record in the 2011-12 season and was named MEAC Coach of the Year.


Thursday, April 27, 2017

SWAC Football Media Day scheduled for July 14

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


Wednesday, April 26, 2017

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


Clark Atlanta Releases 2017 Football Schedule

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


Albany State University names new head football coach

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

What others are saying about Gabe Giardina:

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

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

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

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


Sunday, April 23, 2017

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Full meet results are available at


Langston Picked 2nd in CSFL Spring Coaches Poll

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

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

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

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

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


Wiley Wildcats' Dynasty Continues With Fourth Straight RRAC Championship

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

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

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

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

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



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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

Shakinah Brooks And Anthony Soriano Win CIAA MVP Awards

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

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

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

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

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

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


WSSU women win CIAA track title

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

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

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

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


Arrests cast shadow over Alcorn spring game

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

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

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

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

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


Saturday, April 22, 2017

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


FAMU Rattler Men Capture 2017 MEAC Tennis Championship

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Singles competition

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

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

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

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

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

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

Doubles competition

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

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

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


FAMU Interim Head Basketball Coach resigns

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

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

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


Cheyney Wolves To Play at Alabama State in Turkey Day Classic

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Follow Cheyney Athletics on twitter and Instagram @cuwolves on Facebook Cheyney University Athletics


Albany State Rams football set to showcase talent in spring scrimmage

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

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

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

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


Tuskegee second in Division II football attendance

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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