Monday, August 31, 2009
Minnesota defeated then No. 22 Kansas State (who dropped to No. 23 in this week's poll) in five sets on Aug. 28, and dropped a five-set match to then No. 3 Nebraska (who fell to No. 6 in this week's poll).
The Golden Gophers, who appeared in the top 25 for an 18th straight week, were joined by five other Big Ten teams in this week's poll. Penn State was ranked No. 1, Michigan moved to No. 7, Illinois was No. 8, Michigan State moved into the poll at No. 20 and Purdue fell to No. 24. The Big Ten and Pac-10 topped had the most teams in the top 25 with six apiece. The Big Ten also had three teams in the top eight and four in the top 13.
Minnesota will be back in action tonight when it travels to George Mason at 6 p.m. (CT). The Golden Gophers will wrap up their road trip at Navy on Tuesday, Aug. 29 at 6 p.m. (CT). Minnesota will return home to host the Diet Coke Classic, where it will face Auburn on Friday, Sept. 4 at 8 p.m., George Washington on Saturday, Sept. 5 at 10:30 a.m. and No. 12 Iowa State on Sept. 5 at 8 p.m.
The game kicks off the 126th season of intercollegiate football at Minnesota.
This will be the first time Minnesota has opened on the road since 2006, when the Gophers traveled to Kent, Ohio and rolled to a 44-0 win over Kent State. The Gophers have only opened on the road three times in the last 10 seasons and are 2-1 in those matchups. Minnesota has won 12 of its last 14 season-opening contests.
ESPN2 will televise the game. Pam Ward will call the play-by-play with Ray Bentley as the analyst in the booth.
Minnesota head coach Tim Brewster will open his third season at the helm of the Gopher program with a solid core of returning starters and experienced players. Minnesota returns 53 letterwinners from last season, including 18 starters (10 offense, 8 defense). In fact, the Gophers have more returning starters than any team in the Big Ten.
Junior quarterback Adam Weber returns after taking nearly every snap for the last two seasons. Weber holds numerous school records and is on pace for even more. He set the Minnesota single-season records for passing yardage (2,895), TDs passing (24), completions (258) and attempts (449) in 2007. He is just 26 completions away from the career record. Senior wide receiver Eric Decker set a new Minnesota record for receptions for the second consecutive season, grabbing 84 in 2008. Decker was a Biletnikoff Award finalist and an All-Big Ten selection in 2008. In the backfield, sophomore running backs Duane Bennett and DeLeon Eskridge return.
Defensively, the Gophers were opportunistic last season, ranking No. 11 in the nation in turnovers, creating 31. Up front, Eric Small and Garrett Brown will anchor the middle of the line. The linebacking corps will include returning starters Lee Campbell and Simoni Lawrence. The secondary will return three starters -- CBs Marcus Sherels and Traye Simmons and safety Kyle Theret.
Ironically, in the season when Minnesota goes back to outdoor football, the Gophers will open 2009 in a dome. The Gophers visit Syracuse and new coach Doug Marrone at the Carrier Dome to open the season.
Marrone is a first-time head coach. The Syracuse product came back to his alma mater after serving as the offensive coordinator for the NFL’s New Orleans Saints.
The Orange was 3-9 last season, posting wins over Northeastern, Louisville and Notre Dame.
Syracuse has named former Duke University basketball player Greg Paulus as its starting QB. Paulus will have a go-to target in WR Mike Williams, who sat out 2008, but had 60 receptions as a sophomore in 2007. The Orange will be led defensively by DT Arthur Jones, who recorded 13 tackles for loss last season. Syracuse’s punter, Rob Long, ranked No. 14 in the NCAA with an average punt of 43.9 yards in 2008.
> Minnesota is 87-32-6 all-time in season-openers for a winning percentage of .720.
> Minnesota is opening the season with an opponent from a Bowl Championship Series conference for the first time since 1994, when the Gophers opened with Penn State.
> Minnesota’s six-game turnaround in 2008 was the best in program history.
> The Gophers went undefeated (4-0) in non-conference play in 2008. It was the first time Minnesota won all its regular-season non-conference games since 2005, when the Gophers went 3-0.
> The Golden Gophers have outscored their last five season-opening opponents by an average score of 43.2-16.7.
> Minnesota ranked No. 16 in turnover margin last season, creating 31 and losing just 18.
THE SYRACUSE SERIES
Saturday’s game will be just the third gridiron meeting between the University of Minnesota and Syracuse University. The series is tied, with the home team winning both games of the series. Syracuse won the first meeting 27-17 on Sept. 23, 1995.
Minnesota’s 35-33 victory vs. the Orange on Sept. 21, 1996 was highlighted by then-freshman Tyrone Carter returning two fumbles for touchdowns in a span of 56 seconds.
Saturday’s match up with Syracuse marks the first time since 1942 that the Golden Gophers opened a season with an opponent that is a current member of the Big East Conference. Of course, the Big East was founded in 1979.
Minnesota opened that 1942 campaign against Pittsburgh, which is the only other current Big East member (along with Syracuse) the Gophers have ever faced. Minnesota won that contest 50-7 at Memorial Stadium in Minneapolis.
Minnesota is 13-10-3 all-time against current members of the Big East, including the 24 previous meetings with Pittsburgh and a pair with Syracuse. The Gophers are scheduled to play the Orange once again in 2012, with that game slated for Sept. 22 at TCF Bank Stadium.
Minnesota is 11-16 overall in the Eastern Time Zone over the past 10 years. In non-conference play (including bowl games), the Gophers have ventured to the Eastern Time Zone just six times in the past 10 years, compiling a 3-3 record.
The Gophers regularly play Big Ten opponents Indiana, Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State, Penn State and Purdue, which reside in the Eastern Time Zone.
One of the biggest factors in Minnesota’s impressive turnaround last season was the Gophers’ ability to cause turnovers. The Gophers created 31 turnovers last season (16 fumble recoveries, 15 interceptions) to rank No. 11 in the nation. Only Iowa created more turnovers in the Big Ten, ranking No. 10 in the nation with 32.
The Gophers also ranked No. 16 in the nation in turnover margin (+0.92 avg.). The Minnesota offense had a big hand in that, taking care of the ball with nearly the same amount of success has the Gopher ‘D’ had taking it away. The Gophers turned it over just 19 times in 2008 (11 fumbles lost, eight interceptions).
The Minnesota football team had two of its most productive seasons passing the football in school history over the last two seasons. The 2007 Gophers set team single-season records for pass completions and passing touchdowns. The 2007 team also had the No. 2 single-season passing yardage mark, throwing for 2,949 yards. Minnesota passed for 2,848 yards last season, which ranks No. 5 on the single-season list. The Gophers completed a school-record 262 passes in 2007 and 258 in 2008, the No. and No. 3 marks in school history, respectively.
Sunday, August 30, 2009
The bright spots for the Golden Bears were not committing a turnover, something they did only once last year in the final game of the season, giving them a turnover free streak of eight quarters.
Additionally, junior specialist T.G. Schoenberg (right, Woodbury, Minn.) started off the season hot by punting a career-high nine times for a 43.9 yard average. He forced seven fair catches, placing four inside the 20 with two punts over 50 yards including a long of 60. His net average of 41.7 indicates the punt coverage was stout while he provided excellent hang time with his kicks. UMD did not have an opportunity to return a punt against him.
But CU didn't have an answer for the Northern Sun's Preseason North Division Offensive Player of the Year, running back Isaac Odim, who started off as the undisputed best back in the league by rushing for 187 yards and two touchdowns on 12 carries while taking three receptions for 75 yards and two more scores. He scored the first five touchdowns of the game with the fifth being a 92 yard kickoff return score to open the second half.
He scored from 42 and 86 yards on runs in the first quarter before seven and 60 yard TD receptions in the second.
Brian Hanson, his second half replacement, scored on rushes of one and four yards out in the third and fourth quarters and finished with 144 yards on 13 attempts.
The scoring was completed with a two yard plunge by Nate Bauer with just under eight minutes to play.
The Golden Bears managed eight first downs and converted just one of 15 on third down. They did produce first downs on both of their fourth down conversions but were unable to get in the red zone in the contest while UMD was 4-4 inside the 20.
Their top two scoring chances both resulted in missed field goals. With under a minute to go in the first half, CU took over on their own 32 yard line and drove to the UMD 26, a six play, 42 yard drive that resulted in a missed 43 yard field goal with 15 seconds to play in the half.
In the third quarter, CU went on their longest drive of the game, taking it 50 yards in 15 plays in just under a six minute span. The drive started on their own 27 and they got to the UMD 23 before failing to convert a 40 yard field goal.
In the end, UMD out gained CU 634 to 135, a near 500 yard deficit in total offense.
Sophomore Sam Campbell (left, Cary, Ill.) led CU in yardage with five receptions for 30 yards and six rushes for 14 yards. Sophomore Jerry Shaw (Oak Creek, Wis.) led CU in rushing with 23 yard on eight carries.
Receiving duo Calvin Simon (Jr., Shakopee, Minn.) and Jordan Schultenover (Sr., Minnetonka, Minn.) were not held silent, but were contained. Simon had three catches for 20 yards and keeps his streak of a reception in every collegiate game in tact at 22 games. Schultenover had a 33 yard reception, CU's longest play from scrimmage, and finished with two catches for 41 yards to lead CU in receiving yardage.
Sophomore quarterback Spencer Ohm (Blooming Prairie, Minn.), who made his colleagiate debut a year ago against the Bulldogs, got the start under center and completed 12-34 for 93 yards.
Concordia's secondary held UMD to just 10 completions through the air for 173 yards and forced nine incompletions.
Senior defensive back Christian Even (Pierz, Minn.) led the defense with seven tackles while sophomore linebacker Al Quaye (Champlin, Minn.) pulled down six UMD ball carriers with seniors Travis Meyer (DB, Champlin, Minn.) and Will Brown (right, DL, Shoreview, Minn.) making five tackles along with newcomer Trevor Glomski (Jr., LB, Wabasha, Minn.).
Brown had CU's only tackle for loss while junior defensive lineman John Borchert (Champlin, Minn.) and senior defensive back Joe Butler (Kansas City, Minn.) each had pass breakups in aiding the defense limiting the Bulldogs through the air.
Last year, UMD ended Concordia's streak at 90 games without being shutout and have now held CU scoreless two straight games, both in season openers. It's the third time in the last 12 games Concordia has been shutout since the streak ended.
The Golden Bears will look to turn things around on the road next week at NAIA foe Minot State for a 1:00 p.m. contest in Minot, N.D. The Beavers are 0-1 after losing to Bemidji State on Thursday and are provisional NCAA Division II members. The game will feature a CU audio broadcast with Dan Flanagan calling the play-by-play via Minnesota Sports Broadcast Network (MSBN) online at www.mnsportsnetwork.com along with road live stats provided by Concordia.
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
He has played both forward spots. He is currently playing overseas now. “The team that I am currently playing for is Bourge-en-Breese France. It is an hour from Loen and about an hour and half from Switzerland.” This is his second season in Europe. Last year, he played in Portugal.
One of the things that people might not know about Dan is he is a big fan of Sushi. I have watched Dan play over the summer. He had a nice quick shot and he was able to make good moves around the basket. He was fun to watch in this summer’s Howard Pulley Pro Summer League.
Monday, August 24, 2009
GOPHER MEN ANOUNCE 2009-10 MEN'S BASKETBALL SCHEDULE Gophersports.com Official Web Site of University of Minnesota Athletics
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I was able to get a hold of Willshaun and he told me about his boxing career. I asked him how he gets amped for fights. “I think about my future. I start to yarn a bit at that moment. It’s when I realize that I'm nervous, I start to move around looking at everyone who's around me. My corner tells me to relax, but I keep moving as if I am just waking up. I am starting to come alive, but I am very silent or I'm talking about what I’m going to do to the other guy, after I'm rapped up I warm up by hitting the pads. I ask my coach afterwards how’s the power? Ron Lyke, my coach tells me ‘you're hitting hard as shit.’ I start to smile because I know it's true. There's a certain look you get when it's not! I get ready for the next step, which is my music. I have over a hundred tracks that I could use but it has to feel right to me in my heart depending on the crowd and the venue. As I walk out I hear my music. I check my swag. I feel the energy of the crowd. It gives me a rush from head to toe, a rush that I have to gain control of before this fight starts, because there's no room for mistakes. I enter the ring keeping my composure. As I take a lap around the ring, I’m feeling out my surroundings. That makes me comfortable and now I am ready. It's just me and him.”
Willshaun was born in Elkhart Indiana. He spent a few years in Detroit, Michigan. After living in Minneapolis for the past 17years he considers Minnesota his home. He went to Minneapolis Southwest High School. His first fight was in 2001. He currently trains at ACR. His head coach is Ron Lyke. He said that the best thing that he likes about boxing is the art of it. I asked him what does it take to become a good boxer? “Commitment. I could say more motivating words, but it would only lead back to this one word. Commitment.”
I asked Willshaun what he wants people to know about boxing that they might not know.”I love all of the support that I have received here in Minnesota. I think that boxing has grown here in Minnesota. One day I will bring the belt home!”
During the football season I am always interested in who you the fans think are the best players across the country and the state of Minnesota. If you think there is a team or a player who is really good, feel free to drop me an email at email@example.com
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
has signed his contract and he took part in the afternoon practice at Winter Park on Tuesday afternoon. Terms of the contract have not been disclosed as of yet.
Friday, August 14, 2009
He said, ”I used to be in karate pretty seriously but it often conflicts with my basketball all year long. So I occasionally catch a class here and there. I played baseball and in elementary through middle school.” He currently stands 5’11” and is 172 pounds.
He will be a senior this year, class of 2010. When it comes to music he said, “ I listen to all kinds of stuff but mostly I like relaxing and light rock and acoustic, but overall pretty much everything but country.” His favorite artists are John Mayer, Coldplay, Jack Johnson, Jason Mraz, Michael Jackson, Jay-Z and Eminem.
He played for the TNL Express AAU basketball team this summer. His dad was his coach this summer. I asked him to talk about what it was like playing for his dad. “It went great. I felt that him being my coach made it easier to connect. And it made me a lot more coachable because we weren’t just limited to seeing each other only at basketball but at home as well.”
He really loved his teammates. They all were a bunch of clowns. When I went and covered their games it was one of the best times that I’ve had because they were a bunch of clowns. They knew how to have a good time along with getting down to business and playing tough hard-nosed basketball.
Here is what he had to say about some of his AAU teammates this year. “My teammates this year had to be the funniest, greatest guys that I have probably played with. Kyle Zimmermann, I’ve been playing with him along my side since about 7th grade. We know exactly what the other can do and can’t do and what we can expect from them every single game. No matter who we are playing he has the ability to take over with his very crafty left-handed moves. Jauson Sewer from Richfield, it’s been three or four years now playing with him and I have never seen anyone with the drive and passion that he plays with. So many times we have seen him completely take over a game single handedly with his amazing shooting range. Devon Knopke, it’s my first year playing with him. The fun and excitement he brings on the court often keeps us going most the time. He's very versatile for his size because he is a taller guard but has the strength and ability to go in the post against smaller guards.”
He said that his family plays a big role in his life. When asked about who’s most important in his life, he
answered, “ My family the most. I would say because they are always there at my games supporting me no matter what, and also at functions outside of basketball. I know that I can turn to them for about anything.”
He also has a strong basketball foundation and has made it a goal of his to keep good friends around him. When asked about his best friends, Jasper answered, “At the school and at basketball I would probably have to say my great friend Ricky Starck. We have been friends and moved through the same schools with each other since second grade. We have also played basketball and baseball together since then. Even though he wasn't on varsity with me last year he was usually the one that I went to for advice about how I looked out there, what he saw I could do better and stuff like that.”
He is a busy man but he does have some free time. He said, “In my free time I usually just like to sleep because of my busy schedule that I usually have. If I’m not at basketball, which I’m at most the time, I’m usually trying to catch up with friends, working at my job, or working on my art projects for next year. Me and a few friends usually try and catch a midnight movie every week or so when we can as well.”
He also has one brother and one sister. His younger brother is Zachary Duberry who is 15. His older sister Eleanor Pitts is 22, who just graduated from Tennessee State University.
Like most people he is caught up on Twitter the social networking site. I asked him what he thinks of Twitter. “I love it. It’s a new cool way to stay in touch with people just by simply answering a question of ‘What are you doing?’ I am always on the site on the computer or sending text messages to update on what I’m doing.”
Finally, I asked him what else he wants the world to know about him. “There's not much to me just for the fact that I’m a pretty cool laid back kind of guy. I love trying new things and meeting new people. When I set my mind to something I don’t give up on it till I get it done, and that I am satisfied with what I have done.”
Jasper Allen Dueburry is truly a good person to get to know. He is very laid back and he is a very good basketball player. I feel very lucky to have a good friend in Jasper.
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
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Saturday, August 8, 2009
~15 years coaching experience
~11 years at Simley High School
~South St. Paul High School
~Shakopee High School
~Columbia Heights High School
~Normandale Community College
~1990 State Champions
~ Bloomington Kennedy High School
~Two-year starter at offensive guard
~Special Education teacher
~*Resides in St. Paul
~Daughter, Morgan* (9)
~Son, Evan* (6)
GENE WISE – CO-DEFENSIVE COORDINATOR
Truly a Minnesota Coaching Legend!
~12 years at Eden Prairie
~Six state championship teams
~Holy Angels High School
~17 years for Normandale Community College
~Nationally rated rushing attacks
~Head Coach at Bloomington Lincoln High School
~*Resides in Bloomington
MARTY LEADENS – CO-DEFENSIVE COORDINATOR
~Simley High School
~Four years as Defensive Coordinator
~2002 state tournament appearance
~South St. Paul High School - 1989-2001
~two state tournament appearances
~Isle High School
~ Seven years as Offensive Coordinator
~ Seven years as Head Coach for basketball
~Four-year starting Linebacker
~1975 graduate of Anoka High School
~Played for high school coaching legend Stan Nelson
~Member of 1975 Minnesota State High School Football All-Star team
~Member of 1975 Minnesota State High School Baseball All-Star team
~Elementary Education Teacher
~*Resides in South Saint Paul
RANDY JONES – OFFENSIVE COORDINATOR
~Four years at Simley High School
~2002 state tournament appearance
~Holy Angels High School
~Shakopee High School
~Standout Wide Receiver
~Adapted Physical Education teacher
~*Resides in Shakopee
MARCEL JONES – QUARTERBACK COACH
~Played professionally in Switzerland
~University of Minnesota
~University of Northern Iowa
~South Dakota State University
~High school career
~Four-year starting quarterback at Simley High School
~All State player
~Current record holder of all purpose yards by any player
~Aspiring to continue career in CFL
~Resides in Shakopee
PAT SOMMERS – LINEBACKER AND RUNNING BACK COACH
~14 years coaching experience
~Simley High School
~Head coach for 9th grade football
~Varsity running back coach
~Former MP in USMC
~All Conference guard for 1991 Championship team
~Special Education Paraprofessional
~Resides in Inver Grove Heights
ROBERT GRACE – 9TH GRADE COACH
~Southwest High School
~Head coach for girls basketball
~Weight Room supervisor
~Employed by the Minnesota Timberwolves
~Resides in Minneapolis
KEDRICK WILLIAMS – 9th GRADE COACH
~President and Athletic Director MARC Inc.
~Head Coach 14U team
~Head Coach 12U team
~Patrick Henry High School
~Running Back and Defensive Backs Coach
~Martin Luther King Park
~ Assistant Head Coach
~1994 Graduate of Patrick Henry High School
~Resides in Richfield
BRIAN VOLKMEIER – VOLUNTEER ASSISTANT – DEFENSIVE BACKS
~1989 Bloomington Kennedy High School
~Resides in Eagan
JOSH ZOUCH – VOLUNTEER ASSISTANT
~Highland Park High School
~Five years as Offensive Assistant
~Kearney University – Nebraska
~Resides in Robbinsdale
Sunday, August 2, 2009
Sean McMenomy who was the head football coach at Minneapolis Southwest in May he got the head coach at Minneapolis De LaSalle. I was able to get a hold of him and he was able to talk about his upcoming season at De LaSalle.
Things have been amazing at De LaSalle so far! The kids are amazing and it is nice to finally be in a program that the administration supports the kids and my program. A dream come true. I was hired in May at D.
My goals at D are simple. Create a program that kids want to play in, parents trust the coaches and administration brags about the success. A program that players ten years from now talk about being proud of being part of and of course represent the DeLaSalle family to the highest degree. I expect my teams to be perfect on the offensive and defensive sides of the ball and win a state title.
Everyone of my coaches came with me from Southwest so that is a testament to the loyalty that my assistants have for me. I have also hired Hall of Fame coach Roger French to help me as well.
This is going to be an exciting year for De LaSalle football. We always have high expectations and this year is no different. We expect to win the conference and win a state title. With the new stadium there is added buzz around De LaSalle and the program should thrive on that. We lost some very talented players and so some other players have to step up. Evan Williams is the top football player in the state and he is going to do some great things. Keaton Rush at Linebacker, Shirome Milan at slot and corner, Walt Williams at slot and corner, Rahmann Patterson at WR, LeDarius Aaron at FS and slot and Kyle Huggar on the OL should carry this team.
The style of ball will change for me this year. We will still be a no-huddle team but we will be running the ball a lot more this year then in the past. We open up on the 17th of August.
Saturday, August 1, 2009
I am planning on covering some events in the near future. I will be covering some of the St Paul Saints baseball in the near future.
If you have any information about fall basketball leagues please let me know.
In the fall I am also planning on covering high school and college football for the web site. I hope to be at some of the top games cross the region.
Thanks for your support. If you have any ideas or stand out athletes that deserve any hype please feel free to send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org