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Towson RB West finishes 3rd in Payton Award voting

Posted on 16 December 2013 by WNST Staff

Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - Heads up, Tony Romo, there is another Eastern Illinois quarterback coming to the NFL.

And Jimmy Garoppolo is bringing his Walter Payton Award with him.

Monday night, Garoppolo became the second Payton Award winner from the Ohio Valley Conference school, following in Romo’s footsteps, by outdistancing Eastern Washington quarterback Vernon Adams and Towson running back Terrance West in the voting for FCS outstanding player honors.

The 6-foot-3, 222-pound senior, perhaps the leading offensive candidate from the FCS for the 2014 NFL Draft, gained just over half of the first-place votes – 74 of 147 – and 576 points from a national panel of sports information and media relations directors, broadcasters, writers and other dignitaries. Adams was second with 446 points and West third with 370.

Garoppolo was spectacular during the regular season when Eastern Illinois went 11-1, won a second straight outright OVC championship and was ranked No. 2 in the nation, losing only to FBS member Northern Illinois by four points.

He ranked first in the FCS in passing yards (4,489), passing yards per game (374.1) and touchdown passes (48), second in total offense (377.9 yards per game) and points responsible for (25.8 per game), third in passing efficiency (170.6), and fourth in completions per game (26.7).

An easy choice for OVC offensive player of the year, Garoppolo threw for seven touchdowns against Illinois State and six against both Northern Illinois and UT Martin. He even caught a touchdown against Jacksonville State

The native of Arlington Heights, Ill. continued to build on his many Eastern Illinois and OVC records throughout the FCS playoffs this month. He finished the Panthers’ 12-2 season completing 375-of-568 pass attempts (66 percent) for 5,050 yards and 53 touchdowns with only nine interceptions.

“Jimmy has had the best season from a college quarterback that I have ever seen, with the exception of maybe Robert Griffin when he won the Heisman at Baylor,” said EIU coach Dino Babers, in his second season since arriving from Baylor. “He is the engine that makes us go.

“I’m happy for Jimmy, his family and his teammates for all the success he has had on the field this season and these types of awards are rightly deserved.”

Romo, the Dallas Cowboys’ star signal caller, won the Payton Award in 2002.

Adams, a 6-foot, 190-pound redshirt sophomore from Pasadena, Calif., finished EWU’s 10-2 regular season with 4,059 passing yards and a conference-record 46 touchdown passes. With another 491 yards and four touchdowns on the ground, the Big Sky Conference offensive player of the year led the FCS in total offensive yards per game (379.2) as well as passing efficiency rating (185.7).

Adams has taken Eastern Washington to two FCS playoff wins and into the national semifinals. Overall, he is 291-for-444 for 4,600 yards and 53 touchdowns with 14 interceptions. He’s raised his rushing yards to 540.

West, a 5-11, 223-pound junior from Baltimore, led the FCS in rushing yards (1,875) and scoring (31 touchdowns) during Towson’s 10-2 regular season. The CAA Football offensive player of the year averaged 6.2 yards on a workhorse 301 carries.

Towson has won two playoff games and West will next square off with Adams in the national semifinals. After rushing for a playoff-record 354 yards against Eastern Illinois in the quarterfinals, West’s amazing season totals are 364 carries for 2,295 yards as well as 39 total touchdowns, which ties the FCS single-season record.

The three Payton Award finalists were feted at The Sports Network’s FCS Awards Banquet and Presentation along with the winners of the Buck Buchanan Award (Montana State defensive end Brad Daly, FCS outstanding defensive player), Jerry Rice Award (Eastern Washington wide receiver Cooper Kupp, FCS freshman of the year) and Eddie Robinson Award (North Dakota State’s Craig Bohl, FCS coach of the year).

Jarrett Payton, son of the late Walter Payton, who enjoyed his Hall of Fame career with the Chicago Bears, presented the 27th Payton Award at the national banquet.

There were 147 ballots cast in the 2013 Walter Payton Award voting. The results:

2013 Walter Payton Award Voting
Name School 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th Total
1. Jimmy Garoppolo E Illinois 74 37 13 8 3 576
2. Vernon Adams E Washington 30 47 26 13 4 446
3. Terrance West Towson 22 22 35 27 13 370
4. Brock Jensen North Dakota St. 8 9 12 13 11 149
5. Michael Nebrich Fordham 3 5 11 9 20 106
6. Zach Zenner South Dakota St. 2 2 10 12 14 86
7. Erik Lora Eastern Illinois 0 3 9 14 18 85
8. Bryan Bennett SE Louisiana 5 1 6 13 8 81
9. John Robertson Villanova 0 2 6 9 6 50
10. Quinn Epperly Princeton 0 6 3 3 9 48
11. Lorenzo Taliaferro Coastal Car. 0 3 6 4 8 46
12. Zach Bauman Northern Arizona 1 2 1 4 5 29
13. Kyle Harbridge Saint Francis 1 3 1 2 4 28
14. Fabian Truss Samford 1 2 1 2 6 26
15. Mason Mills San Diego 0 0 1 7 5 22
16. Timothy Flanders Sam Houston St. 0 0 3 3 4 19
17. Walter Powell Murray St. 0 3 0 1 3 17
18. Lee Kurfis Lehigh 0 0 0 3 4 10
19. Jeff Mathews Cornell 0 0 2 0 0 6
20. Isaiah Crowell Alabama St. 0 0 1 0 2 5

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Towson to visit Eastern Washington in FCS semifinals

Posted on 14 December 2013 by WNST Staff

No.  5 TIGERS TO FACE EASTERN WASHINGTON IN NCAA FCS SEMI-FINALS

Tigers To Play Eastern Washington For Right To Advance To NCAA FCS Championship Game

TOWSON, Md. – Coming off a snowy 49-39 victory over Eastern Illinois on Friday night, Coach Rob Ambrose and the Towson University football team will face No. 3 Eastern Washington in an NCAA FCS semi-final game on Saturday, Dec. 21 at Roos Field in Cheney, Wash.

Kickoff is set for 2:00 p.m. (EST) and the game will be televised nationally on ESPNU.

While the Tigers are making their second NCAA FCS playoff appearance in the last three years, Eastern Washington is making its tenth appearance in the FCS playoffs since 1985. The Eagles won the national championship with a 20-19 victory over Delaware in 2010.

After the Tigers advanced to the NCAA FCS semi-finals with their 49-39 win at Eastern Illinois, the Eagles used a 35-24 victory over Jacksonville State to reach the semi-finals.

Towson has never played Eastern Washington or any team from the Big Sky Conference. Eastern Washington is 2-0 against teams from the Colonial Athletic Association. The Eagles beat Delaware and Villanova in 2010.

The Eagles, who won the Big Sky Conference with an 8-0 record, were seeded third in the NCAA FCS playoffs while Towson was seeded seventh.

Eastern Washington, now 12-2 on the season, is 7-0 at home this season. The Tigers, who are also 12-2, have an 8-0 road record this season.

The winner of the Towson-Eastern Washington game will advance to the NCAA FCS Championship Game in Frisco, Texas on Saturday, Jan. 4.

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Towson visits Eastern Illinois Friday night in FCS quarterfinal

Posted on 12 December 2013 by WNST Staff

No. 5 TIGERS VISIT No. 2 EASTERN ILLINOIS IN FCS QUARTER-FINALS

Tigers, Panthers To Vie For Spot in FCS Semi-Finals

TOWSON, Md. –  Coming off an impressive 48-28 victory over Fordham University in the second round of the NCAA FCS playoffs, Coach Rob Ambrose and the fifth-ranked Towson University football team will travel to No. 2 Eastern Illinois on Friday, Dec. 13 in one of the FCS quarter-final games. Kickoff at O’Brien Field is set for 8:00 p.m. (EST)

The game will be televised nationally on ESPN2 with Anish Shroff and Kelly Stouffer calling the action while Brooke Weisbrod serves as the sideline reporter.

The Tigers, who are 11-2 on the season, will be seeking their 11th consecutive road victory when they visit O’Brien Field. During the 2013 season, Towson had the best road record in NCAA FCS with a 7-0 mark. No. 1 North Dakota State and Harvard were 5-0 on the road.

The NCAA FCS quarter-final game will also be a matchup of two of the three finalists for the Walter Payton Award, junior running back Terrance West (Northeast H.S./Baltimore, Md.) of Towson and senior quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo of Eastern Illinois. West and Garoppolo will be in Philadelphia on Monday evening when the winner of the Walter Payton award is announced.

The Panthers run a fast-paced offense that has compiled some very impressive numbers this season. Garoppolo has thrown 51 touchdown passes and has thrown for 4,729 yards.

Eastern Illinois leads NCAA FCS in scoring, averaging 48.9 points per game. The Panthers have scored at least 34 points in every game this season. Eastern Illinois has topped the 50-point mark seven times in 13 games. Eastern Illinois also leads NCAA FCS in total offense, averaging 595.5 yards per game.

While Eastern Illinois enjoys very quick scoring drives, the Tigers have relied on a solid ground game. Towson is averaging 231.6 rushing yards per game and have scored a school record 44 rushing touchdowns.

West leads the Tiger offense, averaging an FCS-leading 149.3 rushing yards per game. He also leads all of college football with 34 total touchdowns, including 33 rushing TD’s. He is five touchdowns shy of matching the NCAA FCS record for touchdowns scored in a season. Former All-American running back Omar Cuff of Delaware scored 39 touchdowns in 2007.

Last week, freshman Darius Victor (Northwestern H.S./Hyattsville, Md.) turned in a career high performance in the Tigers’ win over Fordham. Victor ran for a career high 105 yards on 12 carries and scored a rushing touchdown. He also scored a 41-yard touchdown on a screen pass to give Towson a 21-7 first half lead.

Senior quarterback Peter Athens (Huntingtown H.S./Huntingtown, Md.) had one of the best games of his college career against Fordham. He completed 13 of 15 passes for 301 yards and a career high three touchdowns. Athens, who has completed 212 of 331 passes for 2,935 yards and 17 touchdowns, ranks third in the Colonial Athletic Association in passing efficiency.

Over the last few weeks, Athens has been working with a new group of receivers since injuries to Spencer Wilkins (Mount Hebron H.S./Ellicott City, Md.) and Leon Kinnard (Loyola Blakefield H.S./Reisterstown, Md.) ended their seasons prematurely. Freshman Andre Dessenberg (Ocean Lakes H.S./Virginia Beach, Va.) responded with a big game against Fordham. He caught three passes for 94 yards and caught a 46-yard touchdown pass on a play where the Fordham defensive back was penalized for pass interference.

In the win over Fordham, Athens completed passes to eight different receivers.

The Tiger defense is facing a tough challenge this week against Eastern Illinois. Both of the Tiger cornerbacks, senior Jordan Love (Deep Run H.S./Washington, D.C.) and junior Tye Smith (Wakefield H.S./Raleigh, N.C.) have played very well this season. Love, who has 51 tackles, has broken up nine passes and earned All-CAA first team honors. A second team All-CAA selection, Smith has made 87 tackles and has broken up 11 passes.

A first team All-CAA selection, sophomore Christian Carpenter (Aberdeen H.S./Aberdeen, Md.) has made 75 tackles in 11 games. He is second on the team with three interceptions and has recovered two fumbles. The Tigers’ other safety, sophomore Donnell Lewis (Woodside H.S./Virginia Beach, Va.), was the CAA Defensive Player of the Week twice this season. He leads the team with four interceptions and has scored two touchdowns on defense. With 75 tackles, Lewis is tied for fourth on the team.

Senior linebackers Telvion Clark (Granby H.S./Norfolk, Va.) and Monte Gaddis (Cleveland Central Catholic H.S./Cleveland, Ohio) are the Tigers’ leading tacklers. Clark leads the team with 116 tackles, including 10.5 for lost yardage. A first team All-CAA selection, Clark was the CAA Defensive Player of the Week twice this season. He leads the CAA with five forced fumbles and he is tied for the CAA lead with three fumble recoveries.

Gaddis, a second team All-CAA selection, is second on the team with 96 tackles. He also has two interceptions and recovered a fumble.

Strangely enough, these two programs are complete strangers from each other. Towson has never played Eastern Illinois and the Tigers have never played any team from the Ohio Valley Conference. Likewise, Eastern Illinois has never played any teams from the Colonial Athletic Association.

The winner of the Towson-Eastern Illinois game will face the winner of the game between Eastern Washington and Jacksonville State in the semi-finals.

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 10 December 2013 by Glenn Clark

Honorable Mention: Women’s College Basketball-Delaware State @ Maryland (Saturday 7pm Comcast Center); Golf: PGA Tour Franklin Templeton Shootout (Friday 3pm live on Golf Channel Saturday 4pm Sunday 3pm live on NBC. All golf from Naples, FL); Boxing: Adrien Broner vs. Marcos Maidana (Saturday 8pm from San Antonio live on Showtime); High School Football: Baltimore Touchdown Club Senior All-Star Game (Saturday 1pm Archbishop Spalding)

10. John Mayer (Saturday 7pm Baltimore Arena); Robin Thicke/Fall Out Boy/Paramore/Miley Cyrus (Monday 7pm Verizon Center); Jimmy Eat World/Diamond Youth (Thursday 8pm Rams Head Live), All That Remains/Asking Alexandria (Friday 7pm Rams Head Live), Lupe Fiasco (Sunday 8pm Rams Head Live), Twenty-One Pilots/The 1975/MS MR/NONONO (Monday 8pm Rams Head Live); Mint Condition (Sunday 8pm Baltimore Soundstage); Rick Springfield (Tuesday & Wednesday 8pm Rams Head on Stage), Marshall Tucker Band (Thursday 8pm Rams Head on Stage); Wilson Phillips (Friday 8pm Rams Head Center Stage); Sara Bereilles/Gavin DeGraw (Wednesday 7pm Fillmore Silver Spring), Steve Winwood/Cris Jacobs (Thursday 8pm Fillmore Silver Spring), Gary Allan (Friday 8pm Fillmore Silver Spring); Ginuwine (Friday 8pm Howard Theatre), Ja Rule (Saturday 11:30pm Howard Theatre); The Hives (Tuesday 7pm 9:30 Club), The Pietasters (Saturday 8pm 9:30 Club), Ms. Lauryn Hill (Sunday 6pm 9:30 Club); Mannheim Steamroller (Thursday 8pm Modell Performing Arts Center at The Lyric); Straight No Chaser (Thursday 7:30pm Meyerhoff Symphony Hall); Backstreet Boys (Friday 6:30pm SECU Arena); Childish Gambino “Because the Internet” and Neil Young “Live at The Cellar Down” available in stores/on iTunes (Tuesday)

My most embarrassing admission of 2013? I saw John Mayer the first time he ever played the Arena. My second most embarrassing admission? I kinda enjoy the song he did with his girlfriend.

I had a friend who used to have a Jimmy Eat World beanie. I tried to steal it from him 100 times.

This song will end up in my Top 10 of 2013.

It is NEVER embarrassing to be caught singing along to this.

9. Andrew Dice Clay (Sunday 8pm Fillmore Silver Spring); Gilbert Gottfried (Thursday 8pm Magooby’s Joke House);  The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” and “Saving Mr. Banks” out in theaters (Friday); “Despicable Me 2″ and “Fast & Furious 6″ available on Blu-Ray/DVD (Tuesday)

And instead I’ll encourage you to watch Kay & Peele attempt to break the record for impressions in one minute.

(Continued on Page 2…)

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Towson RB West, OT Pike pick up All-America honors

Posted on 06 December 2013 by WNST Staff

TERRANCE WEST, ERIC PIKE NAMED FIRST TEAM ALL-AMERICA

Ryan Delaire Earns Third Team All-America Honors From College Sports Madness

TOWSON, Md. –  Junior running back Terrance West (Northwestern H.S./Baltimore, Md.) and senior offensive tackle Eric Pike (DuVal H.S./Landover, Md.) of Towson University have been named as first team selections on the College Sports Madness FCS All-America teams.

In addition, junior defensive end Ryan Delaire (Windsor H.S./Bloomfield, Conn.) earned third team All-America notice.

West, the leading rusher and touchdown scorer in NCAA FCS, was also named as the College Sports Madness Offensive Player of the Year.

All three Tigers will lead Towson into its second round NCAA FCS playoff game on Saturday, Dec. 7 at 1:00 p.m. at Johnny Unitas® Stadium. Now 10-2 on the season, the Tigers are hosting Fordham (12-1).

One of three finalists for the Walter Payton Award, West leads NCAA FCS with 155.4 rushing yards per game. He has rushed for 1,865 yards on 301 attempts, an average of 6.2 yards per carry. He needs 135 rushing yards to become the 12th player in FCS history to run for 2,000 yards in a season. The Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) Offensive Player of the Year, West has rushed for more than 100 yards in 10 of 12 games.

With a total of 31 touchdowns, West leads all of college football in touchdowns scored. In his career, he has scored 75 touchdowns in 33 games. He also earned first team All-CAA honors for the third straight year.

Pike has been a force on the Tigers’ offensive line for the last four years. In the Tigers’ regular season finale, he set a school record by becoming the first player in school history to play in 46 career games. The 6-5, 298-pound tackle has also started all 46 games.

A two-year co-captain, Pike has been a two-time All-CAA first team selection. He also earned third team notice as a sophomore.

A transfer from the University of Massachusetts, Delaire led the Tigers with 8.5 sacks and 14.5 tackles for lost yardage. A first team All-CAA honoree, he was sixth on the team with 51 tackles. He was also second in the CAA in sacks.

Towson was one of six teams with two All-America first team selections. No. 1 North Dakota State, No. 2 Eastern Illinois, No. 3 Eastern Washington, South Dakota State and Samford also had a pair of first team honorees.

The Tigers were also one of 10 schools with more than two All-American selections.

FCS Football 2013 Madness All-American Teams

SPORTS MADNESS FCS ALL-AMERICA TEAMS

National Coach of the Year:                                         Dino Babers, Eastern Illinois

Offensive Player of the Year:                              Terrance West, Towson University

Defensive Player of the Year:                              Stephon Robertson, James Madison

Freshman of the Year:                                         Cooper Kupp, Eastern Washington

FIRST TEAM OFFENSE

QB-           Jimmy Garoppolo, Eastern Illinois

RB-           Zach Zenner, South Dakota State

RB-           Terrance West, Towson University

WR-           Sam Alaja, Fordham

WR-           Erik Lora, Eastern Illinois

WR-           Cooper Kupp, Eastern Washington

TE-            A.C. Leonard, Tennessee State

OL-           Eric Pike, Towson University

OL-           Billy Turner, North Dakota State

OL-           Bryan Witzmann, South Dakota State

OL-           Garrett Frye, Georgia Southern

OL-           Dakota Dozier, Furman

PK-           Colton Cook, Southern Utah

KR-           Xavier Robertson, Southeastern Louisiana

FIRST TEAM DEFENSE

DL-           Sullivan Grosz, Cal Poly

DL-           Davis Tull, Chattanooga

DL-           Zach Hodges, Harvard

DL-           Brad Daly, Montana State

LB-            Stephon Robertson, James Madison

LB-            Justin Shade, Samford

LB-            Quinn Backus, Coastal Carolina

LB-            Tyler Starr, South Dakota

DB-           T.J. Lee, Eastern Washington

DB-           Caleb Schaffitzel, Missouri State

DB-           Marcus Williams, North Dakota State

DB-           Jaquiski Tartt, Samford

P-             Kyle Loomis, Portland State

PR-           Torrance Williams, Sam Houston State

SECOND TEAM OFFENSE

QB-           Vernon Adams, Eastern Washington

RB-           D.J. Adams, Portland State

RB-           Lorenzo Taliaferro, Coastal Carolina

WR-           Lee Kurfis, Lehigh

WR-           Greg Hardin, North Dakota

WR-           Jeremy Butler, Tennessee

TE-            Andrew Robustelli, Jacksonville

OL-           Josh Wells, James Madison

OL-           Joe Hook, Maine

OL-           Ashton Miller, Eastern Washington

OL-           Danny Kistler, Montana

OL-           Chris Elkins, Youngstown State

OL-           Dakota Dozier, Furman

PK-           Ray Early, Furman

KR-           Shawn Johnson, Montana State

 

SECOND TEAM DEFENSE

DL-           Collin Albretch, Northern Iowa

DL-           Colton Underwood, Illinois State

DL-           Terrence Fede, Marist

DL-           Mike Reilly, William & Mary

LB-            Jordan Tripp, Montana

LB-            R.C. Kilgore, South Dakota State

LB-            Ronnie Hamlin, Eastern Washington

LB-            Joe Thomas, South Carolina State

DB-           Nick Addison, Bethune-Cookman

DB-           Lucky Dozier, Northern Arizona

DB-           Daniel Fitzpatrick, Tennessee State

DB-           Jerome Couplin, William & Mary

P-             Chad Zinchini, Tennessee Tech

PR-           Fabian Truss, Samford

THIRD TEAM OFFENSE

QB-           John Robertson, Villanova

RB-           Damarcus James, Jacksonville State

RB-           Timothy Flanders, Sam Houston State

WR-           Mike Brooks, Stephen F. Austin

WR-           Torrance Williams, Sam Houston State

WR-           Grant Gellaty, Cornell

TE-            R.J. Rickert, Northern Arizona

OL-           Arinze Agada, McNeese State

OL-           Cody Burgess, Southern Utah

OL-           Ty Gregory, Wofford

OL-           Cole Caruthers, Central Arkansas

OL-           Giovanni Sani, Cal Poly

PK-           Anthony Prevost, Hampton

KR-           Fabian Truss, Samford

THIRD TEAM DEFENSE

DL-           Ryan Delaire, Towson

DL-           Robert Simpson, MVSU

DL-           Zack Wagenmann, Montana

DL-           James Cowser, Southern Utah

LB-            Nick Dzubnar, Cal Poly

LB-            Zak Browning, Southern Utah

LB-            Tony Bell, Tennessee-Martin

LB-            Todd Davis, Sacramento State

DB-           Jacob Hagen, Liberty

DB-           Kadeem Wise, Chattanooga

DB-           Greg Worthy, Furman

DB-           Anders Battle, Northern Arizona

P-             Justin Weldon, Sacramento State

PR-           Ellis Henderson, Montana

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Towson faces Fordham Saturday in second round of FCS playoffs

Posted on 06 December 2013 by WNST Staff

TIGERS HOST FORDHAM IN NCAA FCS PLAYOFF GAME

Seventh-Seeded Tigers Seeking 11th Win of the Season

TOWSON, Md. –  Looking to advance to the quarter-finals of the NCAA FCS Championship, Coach Rob Ambrose and the Towson University football team will host Fordham University in a second-round FCS playoff game on Saturday, December 7 at Johnny Unitas® Stadium at 1:00 p.m.

The Tigers were one of eight seeded teams that received first-round byes. Fordham improved its record to 12-1 with a 37-27 victory over Sacred Heart in a first round game last week.

Saturday’s game will be broadcast on ESPN3 with Ryan Rose and former Delaware Coach K.C. Keeler calling the action.

While the two coaches in the game, Ambrose and Joe Moorhead, have many things in common, Towson and Fordham play two drastically different styles of football. While the Tigers rank among the national leaders by averaging 235.2 rushing yards per game, Fordham passes for 358.3 yards per game.

In 12 games, Towson has scored 61 touchdowns, 40 of which have come on running plays. Fordham has 63 touchdowns, 34 touchdowns on pass plays.

Both coaches are the head coaches at their alma mater. Ambrose graduated from Towson in 1993, and Moorhead is a member of Fordham’s Class of 1996. When Ambrose left the University of Connecticut to become the head coach at Towson, Moorhead succeeded him as the Huskies’ offensive coordinator.

Both Ambrose and Moorhead have orchestrated amazing turnarounds at their schools. In Ambrose’s first two seasons at Towson, the Tigers had a 3-19 record. In the last three years, Towson has a 26-9 mark. In 2011, Fordham was 1-10. In his second season as the Rams’ head coach, Moorhead has led Fordham to a 12-1 record.

In addition, both coaches recorded wins over NCAA FBS programs this season. In August, Ambrose coached the Tigers to a 33-18 victory over Connecticut. A few weeks later, Moorhead guided the Rams to a 30-29 win over Temple.

The Tigers, who are making their second NCAA FCS playoff appearance in the last three years, have won 14 of their last 16 games dating back to the 2012 season.

Last season, Towson posted a final record of 7-4 and finished the regular season with a four-game winning streak that included road wins against three nationally ranked teams. However, the Tigers did not receive a post-season bid to the NCAA FCS playoffs. That led to the motto for this year’s team, “Leave No Doubt.”

“Everybody had a bad taste in their mouths after last season,” recalls Coach Ambrose. “We were disappointed that we didn’t take care of business when we had the opportunity to do so. We won our last four games and beat some very good teams, but we left our fate in the hands of a committee. We didn’t want that to happen again.”

With their regular season mark of 10-2 and a top five national ranking in the final two polls, the Tigers left no doubt and earned a number seven seed.

The Tiger offense has been led by junior running back Terrance West (Northwestern H.S./Baltimore, Md.) and senior quarterback Peter Athens (Huntingtown H.S./Huntingtown, Md.). Towson ranks among the NCAA FCS leaders, averaging 459.9 yards of total offense per game and 37.2 points per conest.

One of three finalists for the Walter Payton Award, West leads NCAA FCS with 155.4 rushing yards per game. He has rushed for 1,865 yards on 301 attempts, an average of 6.2 yards per carry. He needs 135 rushing yards to become the 12th player in FCS history to run for 2,000 yards in a season. The Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) Offensive Player of the Year, West has rushed for more than 100 yards in 10 of 12 games.

With a total of 31 touchdowns, West leads all of college football in touchdowns scored. In his career, he has scored 75 touchdowns in 33 games.

Athens is averaging 232.2 yards of total offense per game. He has completed 199 of 316 passes for 2,634 yards and 14 touchdowns. He has only been sacked nine times.

Senior linebacker Telvion Clark (Granby H.S./Norfolk, Va.) leads the Tiger defense. A first team All-CAA selection, he was named as the CAA Defensive Player of the Week twice. Honored as the FCS National Defensive Player of the Week by “The Sports Network” after the Tigers’ win at Richmond, Clark has made 107 tackles in 12 games. In addition, he leads the CAA with five forced fumbles and has recovered three fumbles, tied for first in the CAA.

The defense will be facing one of the top passing offenses in the nation when the Tigers host Fordham. The Rams average 38.3 points per game, 12th in the nation.

The Tigers will counter with a secondary that includes three All-CAA performers, senior cornerback Jordan Love(Deep Run H.S./Washington, D.C.), junior cornerback Tye Smith (Wakefield H.S./Raleigh, N.C.) and sophomore safety Christian Carpenter (Aberdeen H.S./Aberdeen, Md.).

A first team All-CAA selection, Love has made 43 tackles with nine pass breakups. Smith is third on the team with 85 tackles and has broken up 10 passes. He has also intercepted two passes and forced two fumbles. Carpenter was also a first team All-CAA honoree after making 65 tackles. He has also intercepted three passes and made two fumble recoveries.

The winner of the Towson-Fordham game will face the winner of the Eastern Illinois-Tennessee State game onDec. 13 or Dec. 14.

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 03 December 2013 by Glenn Clark

Honorable Mention: Women’s College Basketball-Big Ten/ACC Challenge: Ohio State @ Maryland (Wednesday 7pm Comcast Center), Siena @ Maryland (Monday 7pm Comcast Center); NBA: Milwaukee Bucks @ Washington Wizards (Friday 7pm from Verizon Center live on Comcast SportsNet), Denver Nuggets @ Washington Wizards (Monday 7pm from Verizon Center live on Comcast SportsNet/NBA TV); Boxing: Zab Judah vs. Paulie Malignaggi (Saturday 8pm from Brooklyn live on Showtime); Auto Racing: NASCAR Awards Banquet (Friday 9pm from Las Vegas live on Fox Sports 2)

10. Trans-Siberian Orchestra (Wednesday 7:30pm Verizon Center); Halestorm (Wednesday 7:30pm Rams Head Live), Panic! at the Disco (Monday 8pm Rams Head Live); Spacehog & Sponge (Friday 7:30pm Baltimore Soundstage), Monster Magnet (Sunday 8pm Baltimore Soundstage); Carbon Leaf (Friday 8pm Saturday 3pm & 8pm Rams Head on Stage); Megadeth (Wednesday 8pm Fillmore Silver Spring), NOFX (Friday 7:25pm Fillmore Silver Spring); Matisyahu (Monday 7pm 9:30 Club); Muse “Live at Rome Olympic Stadium” available in stores/on iTunes (Tuesday)

I don’t care what face you’re making, it doesn’t change how much I secretly love TSO.

I don’t know if I’ll make it to Soundstage Sunday night, but you should sing along with this tune for me.

I believe by law Carbon Leaf is not allowed to go more than a month without playing around here.

I’ll be the Muse record doesn’t suck.

9. Jeff Dunham (Thursday 7pm Patriot Center); Donnell Rawlings (Thursday-Saturday Magooby’s Joke House); The Wolverine” available on Blu-Ray/DVD (Tuesday); Irving Berlin’s White Christmas (Tuesday-Sunday France-Merrick Performing Arts Center at The Hippodrome); Parade of Lighted Boats (Saturday 6pm Fells Point/Inner Harbor); “A Monumental Occasion” (Thursday 5pm Mount Vernon Place)

I don’t really have a lot to say about any of this. Sorry. I didn’t really have time to study if we’re being fair.

Instead, courtesy of The Robb Report, for Christmas this year I’d like you to buy me a backyard stadium for $30 million. For reals.

I would also settle for this $83 million sky yacht.

(Continued on Page 2…)

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Towson finishes regular season in Top 5 of both FCS polls

Posted on 27 November 2013 by WNST Staff

TOWSON, Md. – With the regular season finished, Coach Rob Ambrose and the Towson University football team were ranked among the top five FCS football teams in both The Sports Network poll and the NCAA FCS Coaches’ poll that were released this week.

Towson was ranked fourth in the NCAA FCS coaches’ poll and earned a number five ranking in The Sports Network poll.

In both polls, North Dakota State (11-0), Eastern Illinois (11-1) and Eastern Washington (10-2) are the three highest ranked teams. In The Sports Network poll, Montana (10-2) is ranked fourth with 2,997 points while Towson (10-2) is fifth with 2,780 points.

In the FCS Coaches poll, Towson is fourth and Montana is fifth. Towson has 535 points while Montana has 517 points.

The Tigers, who have been ranked in the NCAA FCS Top 10 for 12 of the last 13 weeks, closed out the regular season with a 28-17 victory over James Madison University on Saturday.

Towson was one of eight teams to receive a first round bye for the NCAA FCS playoffs. Seeded seventh, the Tigers will play the winner of the Fordham-Sacred Heart game at Unitas Stadium on Saturday, Dec. 7 at 1:00 p.m.

With an 11-1 record, Fordham is ninth in The Sports Network poll and tenth in the NCAA FCS Coaches’ poll.

Over the last three seasons, Towson has a 26-9 overall record. The Tigers are 25-6 against NCAA FCS opponents and have a record of 19-5 in Colonial Athletic Association contests.

Towson’s 19-5 record in CAA games over the last three years is the best mark among CAA teams, followed by New Hampshire (18-6) and Maine (17-7).

Towson was ranked as high as third in the nation after opening the season with six straight wins, including a 33-18 victory over Connecticut.

Towson is one of three CAA teams to advance to the NCAA FCS playoffs. Maine and New Hampshire are also part of the 24-team field.

2013 FCS FOOTBALL RANKINGS – The Sports Network

1. North Dakota State (143) 11-0 3,575 1
2. Eastern Illinois 11-1 3,416 2
3. Eastern Washington 10-2 3,278 3
4. Montana 10-2 2,997 5
5. TOWSON 10-2 2,780 7
6. McNeese State 10-2 2,711 6
7. Southeastern Louisiana 10-2 2,698 8
8. Northern Arizona 9-2 2,526 10
9. Fordham 11-1 2,372 12
10. Maine 10-2 2,356 4

2013 FCS FOOTBALL RANKINGS – NCAA FCS Coaches

1. North Dakota State (25) 11-0 625 1
2. Eastern Illinois 11-1 600 2
3. Eastern Washington 10-2 575 3
4. TOWSON 10-2 535 5
5. Montana 10-2 517 4
6. McNeese State 10-2 490 6
7. Southeastern Louisiana 10-2 465 10
8. Maine 10-2 428 4
9. Northern Arizona 9-2 407 12
10. Fordham 11-1 400 11

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Towson gets 7th seed, first round bye in FCS playoffs

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Towson gets 7th seed, first round bye in FCS playoffs

Posted on 24 November 2013 by WNST Staff

FCS PLAYOFF-BOUND TIGERS SEEDED 7th IN NCAA FCS PLAYOFFS

Tigers To Host Fordham-Sacred Heart Winner on Dec. 7

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – After posting a 10-2 record in the regular season, Coach Rob Ambrose and the Towson University football team earned the No. 7 seed for the NCAA FCS Championship Playoffs, it was announced by the NCAA on Sunday morning.

The Tigers, who are making their second NCAA FCS playoff appearance in the last three years, are one of eight seeded teams which earned first round byes.

Towson will host the winner of the first round game between Fordham (11-1) and Sacred Heart (10-2), the 2013 Northeast Conference championship team. The game will be played at Johnny Unitas® Stadium on Saturday, Dec. 7 at 1:00 p.m.

“When you work hard and when you sacrifice, special things can happen,’ said Coach Ambrose. “Every day, the eye was on the prize. Without everybody working together this just doesn’t happen.

“When I took the job, I said it wasn’t a matter of if, but when,” he added. “The ability to maintain our level of success over the past couple of years has given Towson national respect. I am proud to be a part of this community. It’s gratifying, I can’t hide it. I’m proud, I really am. The feeling is just plain awesome.”

Defending national champion North Dakota State (11-0) is the top seed while Eastern Illinois (11-1) is the number two seed. Eastern Washington (10-2) is seeded third while Southeastern Louisiana (10-2) is the number four seed. Colonial Athletic Association champion Maine (10-2) earned the number five seed while McNeese State (10-2) is seeded sixth.

No. 7 Towson and No. 8 Montana (10-2) round out the field of teams that earned first round byes.

New Hampshire is the only other CAA team to be selected as part of the playoff field.

The Tigers became the first NCAA team to earn an NCAA post-season bid at three different levels when they were selected for an FCS playoff berth two years ago. Towson was selected to play in the NCAA Division III playoffs in 1976 and made the Division II playoff field in 1983, 1984 and 1986.

In his fifth season as the Tigers’ coach, Ambrose has led the Tigers to a 29-28 record. Over the last three years, Towson has posted a 26-9 record, including a 19-5 mark in CAA games.

With a 6-2 record in the CAA this season, the Tigers finished the season tied for second in the CAA with New Hampshire. Towson won the 2011 CAA championship and shared the 2012 CAA title with Villanova, Richmond and UNH.

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Towson moves up to 7th in FCS media poll

Posted on 19 November 2013 by WNST Staff

TIGERS RANKED 7th IN WEEKLY FCS POLL

Tigers Move Up Three Spots For Second Straight Week

PHILADELPHIA, Pa. –  With only one week remaining in the regular season, Coach Rob Ambrose and the Towson University football team are ranked seventh in the nation, according to the weekly FCS poll which was announced by The Sports Network.

Towson is also ranked fifth in the NCAA FCS coaches’ poll.

The Tigers, who have been ranked in the NCAA FCS Top 10 for 11 of the last 12 weeks, moved up in the poll after their hard-fought 15-9 victory over No. 16 William & Mary last week. Towson moved up three spots because No. 4 Sam Houston State, No. 8 Montana State and No. 5 Fordham lost.

After opening the season as the 11th-ranked team in the nation, the Tigers have been ranked as high as third in the nation in 2013. Towson opened its season with six consecutive wins before losing to Villanova. The Tigers bounced back with road victories at Albany and Richmond before their 32-31 loss to Delaware three weeks ago.

The Tigers enter the final week of the season tied for second place in the CAA. No. 4 Maine (10-1, 7-0) clinched the CAA championship with a win over Rhode Island on Saturday. Towson is tied for second place in the CAA with No. 21 New Hampshire (6-4, 5-2). No. 19 William & Mary (7-4, 4-3) is tied for third place with unranked Delaware (7-4, 4-3) and unranked Villanova (4-3, 5-5).

Towson is one of four CAA teams that are ranked this week. Maine is ranked fourth and the Tigers are seventh. William * Mary is ranked 19th while New Hampshire is ranked 21st.

The Tigers host James Madison University in their regular season finale on Saturday afternoon. JMU has been ranked in the Top 25 for most of the season but dropped out of the rankings with a 41-38 loss to Stony Brook.

Saturday’s game will be the Tigers’ final chance to impress the NCAA FCS selection committee. The NCAA FCS Tournament field will be announced on Sunday.

2013 FCS FOOTBALL RANKINGS – The Sports Network

1.       North Dakota State (155)                                10-0               3,875                   1

2.      Eastern Illinois                                               10-1                3,686                   2

3.      Eastern Washington                                        9-2                3,579                   3

4.      Maine                                                            10-1                3,335                   6

5.      Montana                                                         9-2                3,022                  7

6.      McNeese State                                               9-2                2,882                  9

7.      Towson                                                          9-2                2,795                   10

8.      Southeastern Louisiana                                   9-2                2,781                   14

9.      Sam Houston State                                         8-3                2,527                  4

10.     Northern Arizona                                            8-2                2,513                   12  

11.      Coastal Carolina                                             10-1                2,509                  11

12.     Fordham                                                        10-1                2,163                    5

13.     Montana State                                                7-4                1,675                    8

14.     Bethune-Cookman                                          9-2                1,568                   18

15.     Youngstown State                                           8-3                1,487                   15

16.     South Dakota State                                         7-4                1,415                    19

17.     Lehigh                                                           8-2                1,324                   20

18.     Charleston Southern                                       10-2               1,181                     13

19.     William & Mary                                               7-4                1,051                    16

20.    Southern Utah                                                8-3                878                    NR

21.     New Hampshire                                              6-4                759                     23

22.    Princeton                                                       8-1                 704                    25

23.    Chattanooga                                                   8-3                578                    17

24.    Samford                                                         7-4                506                    NR

25.    Tennessee State                                             9-3                402                    NR

Others receiving votes:  Jacksonville State 262, Delaware 253, South Carolina State 158, Harvard 113, Villanova 56, Northern Iowa 55, Wofford 43, UT Martin 38, Sacred Heart 30, Alcorn State 28, Furman 25, James Madison 24, Southern Illinois 19, Illinois State 15, Central Arkansas 15, Jackson State 13, Gardner-Webb 12, Liberty 9, Georgia Southern 4, Eastern Kentucky 4, Richmond 3, San Diego 1.

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