Archive | August, 2014

Skyhawk Volleyball improves to 3-0

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Skyhawk Volleyball improves to 3-0

Posted on 31 August 2014 by Allen


The University of Tennessee at Martin volleyball team moved to 3-0 on the 2014 season after a 3-0 victory over Southern (25-17, 25-15, 25-15) in the final day of the ISTAP Collegiate Cup hosted by Alabama State.

The Skyhawks, who defeated South Carolina State 3-0 and Alabama State 3-2 yesterday, stayed hot this afternoon, completing the tournament sweep. After the conclusion of the final match, UT Martin freshman setter Madison Bergren was named to the six-person all-tournament team. Bergren tallied 112 assists, 17 kills and a .615 attack percentage in the three Skyhawk victories.

“It was an exciting weekend,” UT Martin head coach Darrin McClure said. “We wanted to come down here and compete and I thought we did that. Our biggest test was yesterday against Alabama State – we showed a lot of heart and resilience.”

The Skyhawks won today’s match with a balanced offense, as 10 UT Martin players had at least one kill but no Skyhawk had more than seven kills. Emily Keaton led the squad with seven kills against only one error in 16 attempts (.375 hitting percentage) while Allie Whimpey added six kills. Bergren handed out 31 assists to guide an offense that hit .301 as a team (38 kills, 13 errors in 83 attempts).

Colleen Larson amassed 11 digs to lead the Skyhawk defense today while Whimpey chipped in with six digs.

UT Martin trailed early in the first set but a 7-0 Skyhawk run – fueled by three aces by Whimpey – tilted the score in the Skyhawks’ favor. Back-to-back kills by Keaton spurred a 5-1 run for UT Martin, who extended their advantage to double-digits at 18-8. The Lady Jaguars would get within five points (22-17) before the Skyhawks tallied three consecutive points to end the set.

Bergren handed out 12 assists in the first set to help the Skyhawks double up Southern on kills (14 to seven).

The second set began with a 6-2 run by UT Martin. After Southern closed the gap to 10-8, the Skyhawks unreeled an 8-2 run, capped off by back-to-back kills from Keaton and Whimpey. The Lady Jaguars would not get any closer than six points for the remainder of the set, as a solo block from Grace Hardin concluded a 5-1 Skyhawk run to close out the set.

Keaton slammed down four kills to pace an offense that hit .423 (13 kills, two errors) in 26 attempts in the second set.

UT Martin once again jumped out to a fast start in the third set, taking an 11-4 lead. Back-to-back attack errors by Southern made the score 15-6 and the Skyhawks pushed their lead out to double-figures for the first time at 18-8. The Lady Jaguars crept back to seven points twice in the latter stages of the set before two straight kills by Lael Ceriani completed the sweep.

UT Martin holds its 2014 home opener this Tuesday, Sept. 2 when it takes on Alabama A&M. First serve from Skyhawk Fieldhouse is set for 7 p.m.

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Lloyd named OVC Specialist of the Week

Lloyd named OVC Specialist of the Week

Posted on 31 August 2014 by Allen


Placekicker Andrew Lloyd was named the adidas OVC Specialist of the Week following his performance in the Eastern Kentucky University football team’s 29-10 win at Robert Morris Thursday night.

Lloyd, a native of Winchester, Va., converted on field goal attempts of 34, 25 and 25 yards in the season-opening victory. His first field goal came in the second quarter and then he added two more in the third quarter to push the Colonel advantage to 23-3 entering the fourth quarter. All seven of Lloyd’s kickoffs were downed for touchbacks.

Dating back to last year, Lloyd has made nine straight field goals. The senior converted 8-of-10 field goal attempts in his first season on the squad in 2013.

The other OVC weekly award winners were Eastern Illinois wide receiver Adam Drake (Offensive), Tennessee State defensive lineman Anthony Bass (Defensive) and Tennessee State running back Tom Smith (Newcomer).

Eastern Kentucky is back in action this Saturday, Sept. 6 at Miami (Ohio). That game will be televised by ESPN3 beginning at 3:30 p.m.

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No make up game for Florida and Idaho yet…

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No make up game for Florida and Idaho yet…

Posted on 31 August 2014 by Allen


There was one play Saturday night during the non-conference football game between the Idaho Vandals and Florida Gators. The winner of the evening, though, was the weather that included lightning and at times torrential rains.

After a nearly three-hour delay, Idaho kicked off to the Gators who returned the ball to the Vandal 20. Moments after the ball was spotted, officials called the game again because of lightning in the area. The on-again, off-again rain resumed as well. After another delay of almost an hour, the game was ‘terminated’ because of unsafe field conditions. There were more than 1,000 lightning strikes reported in the area and there was a flood warning.

University of Idaho Director of Athletics Rob Spear said a decision about whether or not to play the game at another time would be made over the next few days.

In a prepared statement, University of Florida officials said:

“Game officials for the Florida-Idaho football game, as well as athletics directors from both schools, in conjunction with the Southeastern Conference, have determined that the game between the Gators and Vandals has been suspended. This is due to weather, unsafe and unplayable field conditions at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on Saturday night.

“According to the SEC rule book, if a game is suspended before the end of the fourth period and cannot be resumed, there are four possible options:

1. Resume the game at a later date;

2. Terminate the game with a determined final score;

3. Forfeit of the game; or

4. Declare a no contest.

“The athletics directors from both schools, in consultation with the coaches, must agree on one of the four options listed above. This agreement will include the final score if the game is terminated.

“If the game is resumed, it will begin with the same time remaining and under the identical conditions of down, distance, field position and player eligibility.”

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Bills release Kenny Ladler, sign him to practice squad

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Bills release Kenny Ladler, sign him to practice squad

Posted on 31 August 2014 by Allen

Kenny Ladler

Former Vanderbilt safety Kenny Ladler was released yesterday by Buffalo. The Bills had to get their roster down to 53 men along with every other NFL team yesterday afternoon and there wasn’t room for the former Commodore safety. But today Buffalo announced that they had signed Ladler to the 10 man practice squad.

The Bills practice squad will have DB Deon Broomfield, LB Jimmy Gaines, WR Caleb Holley, DE Ike Igbinosun, DE Bryan Johnson, and QB Jeff Tuel along with Ladler.

NFL practice squad players don’t make the same as players on the 53 man roster but they still do ok. Each practice squad player will make a minimum of $6,300 per week they are on the practice squad but they can make more depending on how much the player and club agree to. If a player does stay on the practice squad for the entire NFL regular season he would earn $107,000.

Ladler signed with the Bills as an undrafted free agent in May. He had a very good camp but a numbers game kept him off the 53 man roster. He will have a chance to get called up is there are injuries during the season.

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Georgia’s Todd Gurley Named Walter Camp National Player Of The Week

Georgia’s Todd Gurley Named Walter Camp National Player Of The Week

Posted on 31 August 2014 by Allen

Gurley Georgia

Georgia junior tailback Todd Gurley has been named the Walter Camp National Offensive Player of the Week following his performance in the win over #16 Clemson on Saturday.

This marks Gurley’s first Walter Camp honor while quarterback Aaron Murray was a two-tome recipient last year. Former Bulldog All-American linebacker Jarvis Jones garnered the defensive honor three times in his career.

Gurley, a Tarboro, N.C., finished with a school record 293 all-purpose yards (former record 290, Rodney Hampton, 1987) and scored four touchdowns to help down the Tigers 45-21. He finished with his 14th career 100-yard rushing game after going for a career-high 198 yards and three scores on just 15 carries (13.2 average). His final carry was a 51-yard touchdown midway through the fourth quarter.

Gurley also tied an NCAA record by returning a kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown. This marked his second career 100-yard return for a score after he returned one against Buffalo during his first game as a Bulldog versus Buffalo.

Georgia (1-0, 0-0 SEC) has a bye week before traveling to Columbia, S.C., to face South Carolina (0-1, 0-1) on Sept. 13. CBS will televise the game at 3:30 p.m.

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Teddy Holder MMA

Top Ten UFC Prospects from Tennessee

Posted on 31 August 2014 by Allen

Teddy Holder MMA

Slowly but surely fighters from Tennessee are making their way into the UFC. OVince St. Preux and Dustin Ortiz have had some success in the Octagon and are ranked in the Top 15 in their weight classes. Recently Scott Holtzman from East Tennessee was released from his XFC contract and inked a deal with Zuffa. But those aren’t the only guys from the Volunteer state who could do well in the UFC. The state is starting to really produce talent after a few years with an Athletic Commission in place to oversee and sanction professional bouts.

I put together a list of fighters who are the Top Ten prospects from Tennessee who have the potential to wind up in the UFC. I didn’t include Mike Wessel and Thomas Vasquez since they are under contract with Bellator.

Here you go.

10. Andy Uhrich 170 7-4

Two years ago Uhrich was on fire. He defeated previously undefeated D1 wrestler Joe Williams at Bellator 73 and was invited to participate in the new Bellator reality show “Fight Master”. Uhrich defeated Dom O’Grady on the show but he sustained a cut above his eye and was given a suspension by the Louisiana Athletic Commission and sent home. After Bellator couldn’t find a fight for him for almost a year “Stunner” was brought back to face former Collegiate All-American wrestler Nate Coy who had wins over Dhiego Lima and Rick Story. Uhrich dropped him twice and dominated him standing. Unfortunately he lost a decision after Coy laid on him for most of the fight.

Back in May he fought again for Bellator. This time he fought up and coming Ben Brewer. After coming out strong in the first round and imposing his will on Brewer Uhrich got caught in the second round and lost his second fight in a row. He will fight next for Summit Fighting Championships against Codale Ford in September.

Should Uhrich win or two more he could be a great fit on The Ultimate Fighter.

9. Adam Townsend 155 9-3

After a decorated amateur career Townsend turned pro in 2012 and won his first four fights, three of which were by submission. Last year he got caught on the wrong side of some close decision losses to Nate Landwehr, Pat Defranco, and Frankie Perez. Since dropping a split decision to Landwehr in February Townsend has finished three straight opponents and appears to be on the verge of some bigger things.

Like Uhrich, Townsend is another guy who would be a great fit on The Ultimate Fighter. If he could get on the show and show what he’s made of he could easily get a fight in the UFC, whether he wins the show or not.

8. Tyler Minton 185 5-1

Tyler Minton is arguably one of the most popular fighters in East Tennessee. With his gutsy performances and down home, good ol boy demeanor it’s easy to root for “Melee”. Earlier this year he was featured on The Ultimate Fighter. But unfortunately he lost to future semi-finalist Roger Zapata and didn’t make it in the house.

Since the show Minton hasn’t competed. But having been on the show, he’s on the UFC’s radar and with another win or two it’s likely you will see him in the UFC.

7. Nate Landwehr 155 4-1

Nate Landwehr is one of the most polarizing fighters in the state. Some folks love him, while others despise him. He’s not cocky. He’s convinced. But one thing is for sure “The Train” comes to fight every time.

Landwehr quietly built a following as a dynamic amateur out of Clarksville, TN. After dropping a controversial hometown split decision against ISKA flyweight champ Anthony Morgan in 2012 he turned pro that summer on the undercard of XFC 18 in Nashville.

Coming into the bout the promotion was really touting his opponent, Billy Mullins who had won a pro contract with the XFC after winning a tournament. “The Train” dominated Mullins as soon as the fight started and knocked him out in the second round. After the fight he was offered a contract with the XFC.

Later that year Landwehr was the center of the controversy when he taunted his opponent Chris Wright after knocking him out at XFC 20 in Knoxville. Wright is a fairly popular fighter from East Tennessee. He never was shy about saying what was on his mind and allegedly had been talking smack to Landwehr at the weigh-ins and before they walked out to the cage. After their introductions neither man touched gloves and it was a grudge match from that point forward. In the second round Landwehr was on top of Wright raining down punches until the ref stopped the fight. Still upset about the trash talk from earlier “The Train” kept talking and taunting Wright until his opponent’s cornermen ran into the cage. They were escorted out by security but Landwehr had made an impression.

Landwehr next appeared at XFC 22 in Charlotte against D’Juan Owens. “The Train” lost a controversial decision in Owens hometown that probably should’ve gone his way. After suffering his first career loss Landwehr fought Keith Richardson at XFC 26. At the end of the night it was another highlight reel KO for the bad guy as he knocked out “The Rockstar” late in the first round.

In February “The Train” headed back to East Tennessee to face our #9 prospect Adam Townsend. As if the stakes weren’t higher for the two, both men agreed to fight a “Winner Takes All” bout and the winner would go home with the losers fight purse. Landwehr did it again as he went into hostile territory and earned a close split decision win.

Currently Landwehr is tied up in the XFC mess and his contract status isn’t very clear. The XFC has changed course and are only promoting shows in South American so it’s likely he will get his release like Hotzman did and will be a free agent very soon. “The Train” was made for The Ultimate Fighter. Some would love him and most would hate him. Either way you will watch when he’s fighting.

6. Ben Brewer 170 8-2

Brewer is somewhat of a legend in Tennessee amateur MMA. It seemed like he fought every weekend all over the state. The most interesting thing is, is that he rarely lost. He bounced around from gym to gym but after turning pro and winding up with Shawn Hammonds “The Ruler” has found his home. Being over 6 foot tall Brewer has range and with with his slick submission he has developed into a legitimate UFC prospect.

In January 2013 Brewer made his pro debut and was on his way to becoming 2-0 before a freak accident occurred when he hit his head on the cage. Instead of stopping the bout and declaring it a no contest the ref awarded it to his opponent Dameon Melton. Three months later Brewer avenged the loss with a submission victory in less than a minute.

Since avenging the loss Brewer reeled off 5 straight victories and looked like he was about to pick up his sixth earlier this weekend at Legacy 34 against former Ultimate Fighter contestant Gilbert Smith. Brewer dominated the fight and had his opponent in trouble early on. Unfortunately he got caught in the closing seconds of the first round in a guillotine and was forced to tap.

Losing to a guy like Smith won’t hurt him. Brewer is young and will bounce back. Brewer will likely fight again this fall for V3 and if he can string together a couple of wins it’s possible he could skip The Ultimate Fighter and go right to the big show.

5. Brian Hall 125 9-2

Brian Hall is a guy who has been around for a long time. He competed as an amateur for two years and dominated everyone until he fought Thomas Vasquez. Vasquez beat him twice as an amateur. He finished him in both fights. The knock on Hall was he had a lot of potential but his record was padded and he hadn’t beaten anyone that was credible. Going into Legacy 34 Hall’s wins came over opponents with a 10-33 record.

On Friday night Hall changed all that. He beat Pedro Souza who was regarded as one of the top prospects from Brazil at Legacy 34. With the win “The Law” just put himself onto the UFC’s radar. The UFC flyweight division is thin at best and a 9-2 fighter coming off a high profile win has a good shot at making their roster.

4. Austin Lyons 145 12-3

Like Brian Hall Austin Lyons is another guy who has been around a while on the Tennessee MMA scene. He appeared on the Live season of the Ultimate Fighter but didn’t win his fight to get into the house. Since the show he lost 3 out of his next four fights. But now with two straight wins on two major shows (Bellator 120 and Legacy 34) Lyons seems to have righted the ship now that he is with Nashville MMA.

Lyons may need a few more wins before he could make it to the UFC. But with impressive wins over a tough veteran like Zach Underwood and a former UFC veteran and TUF champion, Jonathan Brookins he is a lot closer than he was last year.

3. Drew Kennedy 170 5-1

Drew Kennedy is one of the most dynamic fighters in Tennessee. He finished his first five professional opponents with relative ease. Unfortunately Kennedy was on the wrong end of a controversial hometown decision loss against Roger Carroll last January. Had that fight been held anywhere else Kennedy would’ve won.

Since the loss Kennedy hasn’t competed. He was scheduled to face Ben Brewer earlier this Spring but Brewer had a hard time with the weight cut and had to pull out of the bout the day of the weigh-ins.

Kennedy is scrappy and has tremendous submissions. He still needs a few more wins before he would be on the UFC’s radar but he would be a great fit for The Ultimate Fighter.

2.Teddy Holder 205 8-1

After starting off his MMA career at 2-1 Holder took some time off to deal with health issues. But when he came back in 2012 he was all business finishing 6 straight opponents. Holder wasn’t fighting chumps either. He knocked out former Bellator light heavyweight tournament contender Chris Davis and former UFC fighter Sean Salmon both in the first round.

Holder is currently under contract with World Series of Fighting and was rumored to be fighting Matt Hamill before he announced his retirement earlier this summer. With his heavy hands and knack for finishing fights you know Dana White would love to get ahold of him one day.

1. Luke Sanders 145 8-0

Several years ago when Nashville MMA was starting to turn out quality fighters like Dustin Ortiz Luke Sanders was just beginning his career. Now looking back he could be the biggest prospect they’ve ever had. Sanders went 6-0 fighting on smaller regional shows before signing with RFA earlier this year. Since joining Ed Soares promotion he has quietly gone 2-0 and could be setting himself up for a run in the UFC.

Sanders has taken his training to the next level by taking his last fight camp to The MMA Lab in Arizona to train with former UFC champ Benson Henderson. Before heading out west he had very good wrestling and submissions but now training with some of the best in the world like Henderson and former UFC stars like Jamie Varner and Efrain Escudero he will only get better. Of all the fighters on this list Sanders has the best shot at making it to the UFC the quickest.

Honorable mention: Zach Underwood 155 12-6, Cory Alexander 135 7-6, Craig Johnson 155 6-3

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Bulldogs blowout Southern Miss

Bulldogs blowout Southern Miss

Posted on 31 August 2014 by Allen

miss st

In front of the largest crowd in Davis Wade Stadium history, Mississippi State (1-0) blanked Southern Mississippi (0-1) 49-0 to open the 2014 season Saturday night.

The Bulldogs drove the field and scored on their opening drive, the first of seven touchdowns on the night. The defense followed the offense’s lead and created a turnover on USM’s first possession as senior defensive tackle Kaleb Eulls tipped a pass at the line and senior defensive end Preston Smith intercepted it.

By the end of the game, State’s offense had racked up 550 yards, holding USM to 283 of its own.

Junior quarterback Dak Prescott, in his first his season as the unquestioned starter, opened the campaign with a record-setting performance. His 284 passing yards were a career high, while his four touchdown passes tied his previous best, despite coming out of the game after the first drive of the second half.

Senior safety Jay Hughes, a Hattiesburg native whose father played at USM, was the story of the defense for MSU.

His deep second-quarter interception of an errant Golden Eagle pass effectively ended the first half and stymied the USM threat to break the shutout. Then, in the third quarter, he returned a blocked Southern field goal for a touchdown, once again saving the shutout. It was the first game action for Hughes since he went down with an Achilles injury in the first quarter of the 2013 season-opener.

Elsewhere on the field, junior running back Josh Robinson accrued 87 rushing yards and 49 through the air, while sophomore wide receiver De’Runnya Wilson hauled in four passes for 65 yards and two touchdowns.

MSU returns to action next weekend hosting UAB at 1 p.m. on Scott Field.

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EKU Sweeps Two in Final Day of UCF Invitational

EKU Sweeps Two in Final Day of UCF Invitational

Posted on 31 August 2014 by Allen


Eastern Kentucky University’s volleyball team won two matches on the final day of the Radisson UCF Invitational in Orlando, Florida. The Colonels (3-1) shutout Florida International (1-2) and Western Carolina (0-3) by scores of 3-0.

EKU beat FIU 27-25, 25-13 and 25-18 before knocking off Western Carolina 30-28, 25-15 and 25-19.

The Colonel made only 12 attack errors in their victory over Florida International. Rachel Vick and freshman Celina Sanks recorded a team-high nine kills each and both made only one error. Vick posted a .421 attack percentage. Sanks hit .471, had two aces and two block assists.

As a team, EKU recorded a .297 attack percentage, totaling 39 kills and only 12 errors in 91 attacks. Eastern also had nine service aces and six blocks. FIU finished with a .103 attack percentage, making 21 errors in 97 attacks. The Panthers had only five aces and three blocks.

Eastern Kentucky trailed 25-24 late in the first set before scoring three straight to take a 1-0 lead in the match. A kill by Johanna Boyer tied the score. Sanks followed with a kill before Boyer put it away with a service ace. EKU scored the first six points in the second set and led 17-5 after a kill by Abbey Cvelbar. Vick’s kill finished off the set and gave her team a 2-0 lead.

Eastern never trailed in the third set. Sanks, the freshman, clinched the match with a kill.

The Colonels hit even better against Western Carolina, recording a .322 attack percentage after registering 47 kills and only 10 errors in 115 attempts. Senior Alexis Plagens and Vick led the way with 10 kills each. Vick made just one error in 18 attempts for a .500 hitting percentage. Cvelbar had double-double with 35 assists and a match-best 15 digs.

WCU had a .194 attack percentage after making 17 errors and recording 41 kills in 124 attempts. Jordan Timmermann had a match-high 14 kills.

The Catamounts had set-point, 25-24, in the first after an ace by Elyssa Mulheron. However, Sanks and Ally Peters recorded back-to-back kills to keep it going. Western had set-point again at 28-27 before Eastern Kentucky scored three unanswered to win the set 30-28. Plagens tied it with a kill and put her team in front by one with an ace. Peters finished it off with a kill.

EKU never trailed in the second set. With the score tied 6-6, the Colonels went on a 10-2 run to take control on their way to a 10-point win. Eastern led by only two, 19-17, late in the third set before scoring four unanswered to put the match away. Julia Mindlina’s service ace polished off the set, 25-19, and the match.

Sanks and Cvelbar earned spots on the Radisson UCF Invitational All-Tournament team.

The Colonels will play their first home match of the season on Wednesday against Marshall. The match, held at the newly renovated McBrayer Arena, will begin at 6 p.m.

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Andre Hal gets 2nd pick 6 of preseason, makes Texans 53 man roster

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Andre Hal gets 2nd pick 6 of preseason, makes Texans 53 man roster

Posted on 31 August 2014 by Allen

andre hal

After Andre Hal picked up his second pick 6 of the preseason on Thursday night against the 49ers you got the feeling that he might make the Texans roster. Then when Houston released former second round pick Brandon Harris yesterday it was all but certain. After the Texans trimmed their roster to 53 men Hal was a part of the team.

Houston kept six defensive backs in all; AJ Bouye, Kareem Jackson, Johnathan Joseph, Elbert Mack, Josh Victorian along with Andre Hal. Harris, Junior Mertile, and Marcus Williams did not make the final cuts.

Hal was selected by the Texans in the 7th round of the 2014 NFL Draft after finishing a memorable career at Vanderbilt. As a Senior he was 2nd team All-SEC and was a defensive captain of a 9-4 Commodore team that defeated Georgia, Florida, and Tennessee.

It’s thought that Hal will have to play special teams and will come off the bench but he has tremendous upside and will only get better in Houston.

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Arkansas falls at Auburn 45-21

Arkansas falls at Auburn 45-21

Posted on 30 August 2014 by Allen


Arkansas football fell to No. 6 Auburn 45-21, at Jordan-Hare Stadium in Auburn, Alabama, Saturday evening.

Auburn’s (1-0, 1-0 SEC) win extends its series lead over Arkansas (0-1, 0-1 SEC) to 13-10-1.

The Razorback offense was led by sophomore running back Alex Collins, who totaled 68 yards on 10 carries. Senior wide out Demetrius Wilson led the receiving corps with 55 yards, while senior tight end AJ Derby collected 40 yards and a touchdown. A newly appointed tight end, Derby’s touchdown catch was the first catch of his career. The Razorbacks collected 328 total yards with 175 in the air from junior quarterback Brandon Allen.

On the other side of the ball, Arkansas defensive end Tevin Beanum forced his first fumble as a Razorback in the third quarter while sophomore defensive tackle Taiwan Johnson recorded his first sack and quarterback hurry of his career. Senior safety Alan Turner led the team in tackles (10) and senior Martrell Spaight picked up his first fumble recovery as a Razorback.

Auburn capitalized on its first drive of the game to snag an early lead. The Razorbacks answered on their next drive. With 6:44 on the clock, Allen found sophomore tight end Hunter Henry in the end zone from 14 yards out and senior John Henson’s extra point tied up the game, 7-7. Arkansas’ 75-yard drive lasted six plays and a time of 2:53.

Following the Razorbacks first touchdown, the Tigers produced two of their own to push the score to 21-7.

Arkansas answered again as Derby made a leaping catch in the end zone to collect the Razorbacks’ second touchdown of the game and the first catch of his career. The 75-yard drive lasted seven plays and is the longest scoring drive since

With the momentum flipped, Arkansas forced Auburn three-and-out in the next drive to gain possession. The Razorbacks then marched down the field 93 yards until junior running back Johnathan Williams scampered into the end zone from six yards out for a touchdown to tie the game, 21-21. The 93-yard scoring drive is the longest since a 13-play, 95-yard drive against Ole Miss.

In the second half, Auburn posted two more touchdowns before the game was suspended due to a lightning storm with 9:55 remaining in the game.

After an hour and 28 minutes, the teams returned to the field in pouring rain, where the Tigers scored their final touchdown to seal their win, 45-21.

The Razorbacks return to the field Saturday, Sept. 6, to take on Nicholls in the home opener at Donald W. Reynolds Stadium. Kickoff is slated for 3 p.m. on the SEC Network.

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Razorback Volleyball Beats Michigan in Five, Moves to 3-0

Razorback Volleyball Beats Michigan in Five, Moves to 3-0

Posted on 30 August 2014 by Allen


The University of Arkansas volleyball team capped its weekend with a five-set victory (17-25, 25-23, 25-15, 19-25, 15-11) Saturday night over Michigan in the title game of the Arkansas Invitational at Barnhill Arena. With the program’s first-ever win against the Wolverines, Arkansas improves to 3-0 for the third-consecutive season.

In addition to the team trophy, the Razorbacks also earned individual accolades with Chanell Clark-Bibbs earning MVP honors and Monica Bollinger and Meredith Hays being named to the all-tournament team. Making her Razorback debut, Clark-Bibbs finished the Arkansas Invitational hitting .327 with 2.27 kills per set and posting a team-best 1.64 blocks per set. She also ended the weekend with a team-leading four service aces.

Bollinger collected her 400th career dig in Saturday’s match against Michigan while Hays moved into 28th place on the program’s career kills list after a 17-kill performance versus the Wolverines. The Hereford, Texas, native now has 477 kills as a Razorback to move past Ashanti Taylor (1998-99/471k) on the list.

The Arkansas blocking efforts continued to be a presence in Saturday’s win, posting 16.0 total team blocks to double up the figure by its opponent. Four different players registered at least five blocks, led by a match high eight total blocks by Ana Sofia Jusino. With her fourth block of the match, she reached the 100 mark in career. Through the first weekend of the 2014 season, the Razorbacks are averaging 3.36 blocks per set as a team.

Freshman setter Bailee Hankenson collected the team’s first double-double of the season with 36 assists and 14 digs which tied Bollinger for the high mark on the team. She added six kills in addition to her setting and defensive duties. Five different Razorbacks had at least six kills in the match. Clark-Bibbs and Danielle Harbin each had eight kills against the Wolverines.

Season tickets are currently on sale and can be purchased online at or by calling 800-982-HOGS (4647). Beginning at $40, all season-ticket packages include a free team knit hat. Single-match tickets are $5 for adults while UA students and fans 17 years and younger get in free.


* First win in program history vs. Michigan

* Improve to 3-0 for the third-consecutive season

* Five different players with at least six kills

* Four different players with at least five blocks

o 16.0 total team blocks: most since Sept. 14, 2013, against Texas State

* Milestone Watch

o Monica Bolliger: Collected the 400th dig of her career; currently with 404 career digs

o Meredith Hays: Moved into 28th on career kills list; currently with 477 career kills

o Ana Sofia Jusino: Collected the 100th block of her career; currently with 104 career blocks

* Bailee Hankenson (36 assists, 14 digs) recorded team’s first double-double of the season

* Also defeated Stephen F. Austin and Tennessee State at the Arkansas Invitational

* Up next: K-State Varney Invitational (Sept. 4-6) in Manhattan, Kan.

o First trip to Manhattan, Kan., since the 2007 season

* Next home match: Sept. 9 vs. Oral Roberts, first serve at 7 p.m.

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MTSU dominates Savannah State 61-7

MTSU dominates Savannah State 61-7

Posted on 30 August 2014 by Allen

MTSU logo

Middle Tennessee strung together an impressive performance to stifle Savannah State 61-7 in the Raiders’ 100th season-opener at Floyd Stadium on Saturday.

The Raiders (1-0) produced 519 yards of offense and limited the Tigers on defense to 219 yards. The Raiders’ 61 points and 54-point margin was the largest ever in a season-opener. The previous record occurred in 1954 when MT put up 52 against Stewart Air Force Base.

Despite rainy conditions throughout the game, the Raiders jumped out early marching down the field 75 yards to take a 6-0 lead. MT added 28 more points in the first half to take a 34-0 lead.

Redshirt junior Austin Grammer had a stellar debut as starter, completing 15-of-17 passes for 88.2 percent, which matched the second-best in school history. Grammer threw passes of 50 and 47 yards, respectively. The Tuscaloosa, Alabama native finished with 250 yards and a touchdown.

MT used its strong corps of receivers as five different players had 30-plus yards. Marcus Henry totaled 84 yards, including a 47-yard catch from Grammer. Ed’Marques Batties caught four passes for 42 yards. Junior tailback Jordan Parker had the longest catch of the day in the first quarter, reeling in a 50-yard strike from Grammer.

The Raiders had nine different backs tote the pigskin, netting 228 yards and six rushing touchdowns. Jeremiah Bryson and Shane Tucker posted two touchdowns each. Reggie Whatley added 65 yards, while Tony Rowland connected on 63.

Defensively, the Raiders forced two fumbles and picked up an interception. Trey Wafford returned a 20-yard fumble for a touchdown in the third quarter. In the first half, Kevin Byard picked up his 10th career interception, which tied him for seventh in program history.

Linebacker Quay Watt led the Blue Raider defense with seven stops. Leighton Gasque and Shaquille Huff each added a sack, while T.T. Barber posted two tackles-for-loss.
On the opening drive, sophomore Shane Tucker barreled through for a 13-yard touchdown to give MT a six-point edge. The Raiders subsequently missed the two-point conversion. Grammer found Parker for a 50-yard strike on the Blue Raiders second drive of the day. It would set up a five-yard touchdown pass from Grammer to Tucker. Erdely ran in the third touchdown of the day with a three-yard scamper up the middle, giving MT a 20-point edge.

In the third quarter, the Raiders blocked their 49th kick in the Rick Stockstill era when Raynard Felton rejected a field goal. It marked the first blocked field goal since 2012 against FIU. Batties showed his versatility with a 61-yard punt return in the third quarter, stretching MT’s edge to 47-0.

Middle Tennessee hits the road next week for a 2:30 p.m. contest. The game is televised on the Big Ten Network.

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Bass, Smith Lead TSU Over EWC, 58-6

Bass, Smith Lead TSU Over EWC, 58-6

Posted on 30 August 2014 by Allen


Junior running back Tom Smith found solid footing on a soggy opening night, leading Tennessee State past Edward Waters, 58-6, in the 16th annual John Merritt Classic on Saturday night.

Smith had 151 yards on 12 carries and added four touchdowns en route to being named the Offensive MVP.

Smith’s four rushing scores were the most for a Tiger since Trabis Ward’s four against Southeast Missouri on Oct. 13, 2012.

Anthony Bass was named the game’s Defensive MVP after recording four stops, two sacks, 2.5 tackles for loss and an interception.

Bass anchored a defensive unit that only allowed 76 yards of total offense, five first downs and did not give up any points.

The Tennessee State offense got off to a slow start, fumbling on the first play from scrimmage and then committing three straight false start penalties.

TSU finally found the end zone at the 5:31 mark, as German hit fellow senior Je-Marc Sears with a short pass and then the tight end ran the rest of the way for a 24-yard touchdown. The rain soaked turf caused a bad hold on the point after, so TSU was forced to settle with a 6-0 lead.

A Bernell Brooks interception later in the first set up a 23-yard Carter field goal, and the Tigers held a 9-0 lead with only a minute to go in the first.

Tennessee State’s special teams produced a big play to kick off the second period as De’Ante Saunders ran back a punt for a score, making the score 16-0 with just over 12 minutes to play before halftime.

Saunders’s punt return for a touchdown was TSU’s first since Oct. 8, 2011 when Weldon Garlington scampered 91 yards against Southeast Missouri.

Javon Brandon and reigning OVC Defensive Player of the Year Bass each recorded their first career interceptions in the second quarter – two of the eight combined first half turnovers.

Transfer running back Tom Smith and Stephen Hopkins combined for 127 yards on 10 carries and two scores in the second quarter, and TSU led EWC 30-6 at the break.

The TSU defense was impregnable in the opening 30 minutes, only allowing 18 yards of total offense, including negative-one on the ground, and only one first down.

Smith scored two more touchdowns within the first five minutes of the second half to put TSU up by 38 and the Tigers forced their fifth turnover to close out the third quarter.

After another turnover late in the stanza, Martine Stevenson took the first play of the fourth period 17 yards for a touchdown and finished the contest with 92 yards on 10 carries.

Running back Greg White added a late score as part of his 98-yard day and the Tigers walked away with a 52-point victory.

There were a total of 11 turnovers in the contest and TSU committed 18 penalties for 102 yards.

The Tigers will hit the road next weekend for a date with the Hornets of Alabama State. Kickoff is scheduled for Sept. 7 at 4 p.m.

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Georgia rolls over Clemsons in 2nd Half

Georgia rolls over Clemsons in 2nd Half

Posted on 30 August 2014 by Allen


No. 12 Georgia enjoyed a successful season opener with a 45-21 win over #16 Clemson as the Bulldogs tallied 328 rushing yards including a record night from Todd Gurley, and the defense shut out the Tigers in the second half, limiting them to 15 yards on 22 plays and no points.
Georgia improves to 91-27-3 in season openers including 11-3 under Mark Richt. The Bulldogs now lead the series over Clemson 42-18-4. Georgia is 3-2 against the Tigers when both are ranked in the top 20. The Bulldogs are now 53-10 against non-conference teams including 37-1 at home under Richt.

*Gurley Ties NCAA Record With 100-Yd. Return And Sets School Record With 293 All-Purpose Yards: Junior TB Todd Gurley ran back his second career 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown to knot the score at 21-all midway through the second quarter. Gurley took his first career return 100 yards for a score against Buffalo during his first game as a Bulldog in 2012. Tonight’s latest scamper marked the fifth 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown in school history (current Philadelphia Eagle Brandon Boykin has the other three). Entering 2014 season, 348 players had tallied a 100-yard kickoff return in NCAA history.
Gurley also finished with his 14th 100-yard rushing game after going for a career-high 198 yards on 15 carries with three rushing scores. He scampered in for a 23-yard touchdown to tie the game at 7-7 at the 6:36 mark in the first period. Gurley then had an 18-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter before taking his final carry 51 yards for his third score. Gurley’s 293 all-purpose yards (198 Rushing, 100 KO ret., Minus 5 Rec.) is a school record (the old mark was 290, Rodney Hampton, 1987).
True freshman running back Nick Chubb got his first opportunity and finished with 4 carries for 70 yards, including a 47-yard scoring run. Senior QB Hutson Mason finished 18-for-26 for 131 yards. Mason put the Bulldogs up 14-7 at the 0:35 mark in the opening period with a 2-yard touchdown run.

*Tackles: Senior ILB Amarlo Herrera finished with a game-high 12 tackles and two sacks and 3.5 TFL. Sophomore OLB Leonard Floyd added seven tackles and two sacks. Senior MLB Ramik Wilson had seven tackles while junior JLB Jordan Jenkins had six stops. Junior DE Josh Dawson also tallied his first career sack to stall a fourth quarter Clemson drive deep in Bulldog territory.

*Marshall Ties SEC Record: At the 11:27 mark in the third quarter, Junior PK Marshall Morgan drilled a 27-yard field goal to tie the SEC record with 18 consecutive field goals made in his career. He tied former Tennessee PK Fuad Reveiz for the league’s all-time mark.

*Barber Productive: Junior punter Collin Barber had five punts for 45.5 yards with three inside the 20 and a long of 60 yards. Sophomore Reggie Davis had seven punt returns for 37 yards.

*Points Off Turnovers: Each team forced a turnover but failed to convert the miscues into any points. Michael Bennett fumbled the ball in the first quarter on the Tiger 9-yard line and Clemson recovered. But the Tigers then went three-and-out after ending up in a 4th-and-11 situation. At the 5:46 mark in the second quarter, redshirt freshman CB Aaron Davis snagged his first career interception on the UGA 48-yard line. The Bulldogs then ran three plays and had to punt.

*Starters: Six first-time starters took the field for the Bulldogs. Senior N Mike Thornton, freshman CB Dominick Sanders and redshirt freshman S Aaron Davis started on defense. Redshirt sophomore OG Greg Pyke, sophomore OG Brandon Kublanow and senior FB Taylor Maxey got the nod on offense.
Seven true freshmen have played for the Bulldogs through two quarters. In addition to Sanders and McKenzie, Sony Michel, Nick Chubb, Jeb Blazevich, Rico Johnson and Lorenzo Carter all took the field.

*Captains: Senior QB Hutson Mason, senior C David Andrews, junior DE Sterling Bailey and senior ILB Kosta Vavlas served as the captains against the Tigers.

*Up Next: The Bulldogs (1-0, 0-0 SEC) have an off-week on Sept. 6 before traveling to Columbia, S.C. to take on South Carolina (0-1, 0-1) on Sept. 13. Kickoff is scheduled for 3:30 on CBS.

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Temple 37 Vanderbilt 7 F
Alabama 33 West Virginia 23 F
Arkansas 21 Auburn 45 F
LSU 28 Wisconsin 24