Tag Archive | "Football"

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Watch Calvert Hall and Gilman here now…

Posted on 07 October 2011 by WNST Staff

For you high school football lovers, WNST proudly presents Gilman and Calvert Hall battling in a Baltimore classic today:

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The Roar Has Been Restored At Towson

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The Roar Has Been Restored At Towson

Posted on 06 October 2011 by John Collingsworth

 For those who have not been following the Towson football team this season, you are missing something special. With the Tigers currently 3-1 and ranked 25th in the NCAA FCS, they are turning heads in the Colonial Athletic Asscoiation and head coach Rob Ambrose has his squad ready to make a run at the conference title this year.

With eight teams ranked in the CAA, No. 6 New Hampshire, No. 7 James Madison, No. 9 William & Mary, No. 13 Delaware, No. 14 Richmond, No. 19 Maine and No. 21 Old Dominion, Ambrose explained he is not shocked by the amount of teams in the Top 25.

“It’s no surprise that eight CAA teams are ranked,” says Ambrose, in his third season as the Tigers’ head coach. “This conference is so incredibly tough. When we do the pre-season rankings, it is very hard because every team is good.”

However before you read any further, here is a quick glance of the final offensive stats from a game the Tigers recently played…

First Downs-

Towson 21

Opponent 20

Passing Yards (Net)-

Towson 217

Opponent 137

Total Offense Plays/ Yards-

Towson 72/ 378

Opponent 61/ 335

Possession Time-

Towson 35:39

Opponent 24:21

The opponent Towson faced was Maryland this past Saturday. The Tigers offense was firing on all cylinders, however they could not quite put the ball through the posts or in the end zone and the final score ended up being 28-3 Maryland.

“Yeah, it was a great learning experience for us. The kids understand a hell of a lot more about themselves. This is a returning 9-win team [Maryland] from the ACC and at halftime we had run 40 some plays of offense for about 250 yards and they had run about 20,” head coach Ambrose said after Towson was defeated by Maryland.

For those of you who have not seen the Tigers in action, well you should. They are an exciting squad to watch with a potent offense and tantalizing defense. Offensive stars Grant Enders and Tyler Wharton have propelled the Tigers to a phenomenal start along with stellar defense from Jordan Dangerfield and Frank Beltre.

This Saturday, the nationally ranked Richmond Spiders, No. 14, will travel to Johnny Unitas Stadium to take on the Towson Tigers, No. 25, with a kickoff scheduled for 7:30pm. This is the first game the Tigers have played where both teams have been ranked since 2007 when they faced Massachusetts.

The Tigers look to extend their home winning streak of three as they have dominated every home game this season so far by outscoring their opponents 115-30.

The Towson defense is one of the best in the nation and CAA. Leading the conference in allowed points per game with 14.5, which is also 3rd in the nation, and pass defense, 135.2 yards per game has propelled Towson to its winning start.

Sidelined with a concussion last Saturday against Maryland, the Tigers starting quarterback, Grant Enders, looks to return to his position under center against Richmond. Enders has completed 44 of 60 passes for 527 yards with 5 TD passes. He is 4th in the nation with a 167.9 passer rating, which also leads the CAA.

The Towson Tigers are pursuing their 4th consecutive home win, a feat not accomplished since 2003, against Richmond, which the Tigers have not defeated since 2007.

Tune in LIVE at 6pm Saturday, October 8th on WNST AM 1570 and WNST.net as Spiro Morekas and Ron Meehan kickoff the pregame show from Johnny Unitas Stadium. Keep on listening as the Towson Tigers take on the Richmond Spiders at 7:30!

Remember every Thursday at 6pm, join Spiro Morekas and Damon Lewis as they host ‘Tiger Talk’ LIVE from Bill Batemans in Towson and hear it on WNST AM 1570 and WNST.net




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Bring on the football regular season already!

Posted on 30 August 2011 by ddinkin

It just isn’t fair that we have to continually suffer through the Orioles season in order to get to the Ravens.  I love the Orioles but they (read: Angelos) clearly doesn’t love me.

It aggravates the cr*p out of me that my relatives in Atlanta and Denver have teams that compete year-round and we are forced to spend the summer watching yet another “drowning victim” of a baseball season.

This year started off worse than usual.  They had a strong opening – as they often do.  But they began to tank much earlier this year than normal.  Really?!  Who did we piss off to deserve this?

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Team Needs: Washington Redskins

Posted on 31 March 2011 by Brian Billick

When Mike Shanahan took over the Washington Redskins last year, this couldn’t have been what he had in mind.

With a top ten defense and the presence of an elite quarterback in Donavan McNabb, the Redskins were sure to improve their 27th ranked rushing attack.  Shanahan alone, whose teams have historically run the ball well, was sure to produce better numbers.

Now, a year later, they are 30th in the NFL in rushing, 31st in total defense, and most likely absent of that elite quarterback presence.

From my perspective they will need to address the quarterback, wide receiver, and offensive line positions sometime this offseason.  Picking tenth in April’s draft will give Washington plenty of options.

Defensively, they have added O.J. Atogwe via free agency and if they can keep Carlos Rogers, their first round pick in 2005, that should improve the secondary and the 31st ranked pass defense in the league.

2009 first round choice, Brian Orakpo is already of Pro-Bowl caliber, but they could use another rush presence at outside linebacker to fit in Jim Haslett’s version of the 34 defense.

If Maake Kemoeatu returns fully healthy that will help to firm up the nose tackle position, but getting depth in the draft wouldn’t hurt.  I not even going to attempt to predict or pretend to know what will happen with Albert Haynesworth.

Coach Shanahan has said the tight end is the only position on the team he has total confidence.  So that appears to be the only position that is not an option in the draft.

Washington does get a break after facing the tough AFC East in their out of conference schedule, then they pick up the NFC West, Minnesota and Carolina in their out of division games.

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John Moffitt: Exactly What You’d Expect from Badger Produced OL

Posted on 31 March 2011 by Brian Billick

Similar to my analysis of Gabe Carimi yesterday, Wisconsin’s John Moffitt plays with a mean streak that will benefit his career in the NFL.  Moffitt has started 42 of 45 career games for Wisconsin, which is impressive alone, but he also played through a pectoral muscle injury as well as a sports hernia that was operated on after the 2009 season.

Throughout his college career, Moffitt saw extensive action at both guard and center, with his 13 games as a senior all at left guard.  This versatility will only make him more valuable moving forward.

On tape, he is a solid run blocker that uses his positioning and lower body strength to his advantage.   By using a strong and violent punch, he is able to get the defender off balance right from the snap.  He is a hard worker that fights on every play, often finishing his block all the way through the whistle.  He may be a little bit of an overachiever meaning that his work ethic has carried him further than his talent.  That isn’t a bad thing, as he continues to build his skill-set and mature as an athlete, he won’t ever lose that blue collar mentality.  Sometimes his overaggressive style gets him overextended, but that is something that his position coach will be able to work on.

As I have said before, you really can’t go wrong by taking a Wisconsin Badger for an offensive lineman.  They have the “nasty” streak and playing style that are very much desired in the NFL.

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Clint Boling will Benefit from Georgia’s NFL Style Offense

Posted on 31 March 2011 by Brian Billick

Georgia’s Clint Boling is a prospect that is gaining a lot of momentum going into the NFL Draft.  Throughout his career at Georgia, he played both guard and tackle and finished his career with 49 starts (final 38 in a row) to his name.

13 of those starts came his senior year, 6 were at left tackle, but he is better off playing inside in the NFL.  Overall, Boling isn’t the most athletic offensive lineman, but he is agile enough to be effective.  He has better than average feet and does a nice job of  anticipating where the defense will be flowing.  Often times, you will see a lineman attempt to block a second-level defender and miss because he didn’t take the proper angle.  Similarly, he is a good pulling lineman, but often looks most comfortable in zone block schemes.  One thing that concerns me about Boling’s tape is his lack of knee bend and hip flexion.  This was a really exposed when matched up against Auburn’s Nick Fairley, and Fairley is the caliber of athlete he will face each Sunday in the in NFL.

Clint Boing is a smart and durable lineman that will obviously benefit from his four years of starting experience in a pro-style offense.  Look for him to be grouped within the second crop of interior lineman to be selected in April’s draft.

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Details of my Conversation with NFLPA Rep Jeff Saturday

Posted on 31 March 2011 by Brian Billick

I really enjoyed doing Total Access, on the NFL Network, with Jeff Saturday of the Indianapolis Colts.  Jeff is a member of the NFLPA Executive Council and an excellent spokesman for the Union.

Jeff has a very deeply held belief in the Unions position and has an evenhanded approach to the relationship with the owners.  At the end of the day, Jeff knows that whatever form the new CBA takes, it will be a negotiated one.  Unfortunately, the legal action the NFLPA has taken to dispute the owner’s lock out is one that they feel was unavoidable.  Because of the time frame involved, they had to decertify when they did, to give them time to force the action of the owners to avoid the loss of game.  At least that is what they believe.

At the heart of the players request is the need to know what the true operating costs of the owners are, compared to those costs that are associated with a family business, that virtually every teams, except for the Green Bay Packers have.  Jeff contends that they are not out to embarrass the owners nor are they interested in what they do with their own profits as long as it can be quantified and considered with regards to what should be included in the players percentage.

I believe Jeff strongly thinks that some type of agreement will be reach, or at the very least, some type of court judgment will allow for the season to be played. Like Gene Upshaw, Jeff believes that part of the problem is the divergent views that owners like Jerry Jones and Mike Brown have on the view of the economic model the owner wants.  The haves and the have-nots among the owner fraternity may indeed be as much as a problem as the differences between the owners and the players.

There is no question in my mind that a deal can be reached, and that both sides are simply waiting for the courts to decide who has what leverage before they can proceed.  The players that are going to be most harmed are those who would have normally been free agents.  They, on the sort term, will simply be the causalities of the negotiation wars. Some may recoup their loses due to the increase in player revenues, but many are going to see lost wages that will never be recouped.

The NFLPA would do well to put a gag order on their entire member community and simply let guys like Jeff, who have a genuine love of the game and a thorough understanding of the issues, explain their views.  Unfortunately for the owners, they do not have a counterpart to Saturday to present their points of view in as a believable way.

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Team Needs: Dallas Cowboys

Posted on 30 March 2011 by Brian Billick

Even though they are coming off a 6-10 season that included a mid-season firing of Head Coach/Defensive Coordinator, Wade Phillips, the Dallas Cowboys will enter the 2011 draft considered by many as one of the most talented teams in the NFL.

Jason Garret has firmly established himself as both the Head Coach and Offensive Coordinator while Owner, Jerry Jones, has brought in Rob Ryan to recraft a defense that fell to 23rd in the league in 2010.

With Tony Romo returning from injury, priority number one must be protecting their franchise QB and that means focusing on the offensive line.  With the exception of Pro-Bowl center Andre Gurode and starting left tackle Doug Free, the Cowboys current depth chart is made up of free agents and trades.  Dallas has not drafted an offensive lineman with a first round pick this entire decade, and with the exception of Gurode (second round, 2002), none of the three lineman taken in day two of the draft are still with the team.

Dallas is picking ninth overall and should have a couple of really good options should they decide to fill this need with their first pick.  In my estimation, none of the teams ahead of Dallas are in the market for offensive lineman, therefore the Cowboys will have their pick of the litter.  As usual, it is also a possibility that Jerry Jones will be looking to move back and add later picks if he determines there are lineman of value in later picks/rounds.

Defensively, Rob Ryan should have plenty to work with anchoring around Demarus Ware and Jay Ratlif along the front seven.  Inside backer, Keith Brooking is likely on the back end of his career so they make look to find his future replacement on day two of the draft.

Like the rest of the NFL East, the Cowboys catch a break with the NFC West on their schedule, but will also face the tough AFC East and up-and-coming Detroit and Tampa Bay.

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Monday 3-Pointer: The Real NBA MVP, Riley's Angels Reeling & NFL Winning While Losing

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Monday 3-Pointer: The Real NBA MVP, Riley’s Angels Reeling & NFL Winning While Losing

Posted on 07 March 2011 by Thyrl Nelson

Monday 3-Pointer

 #1 – The Real NBA MVP


As the NBA post-season nears and conference seedings become realized, the debate over who should walk away with the league’s MVP trophy is picking up traction too. While there are plenty of good candidates to speak of, and the closing weeks of the season will certainly decide it, it’s hard to make a case right now against the Chicago Bulls’ Derrick Rose.


The Bulls like lots of other teams were left on the outside looking in on the LeBron sweepstakes last summer, left like the rest to pick through the post-Heat remnants of the summer’s free agent bounty, landing eventually on Carlos Boozer. This despite the fact that they reportedly had enough to sign all of Miami’s power triumvirate, in addition to the perfect components in Rose and Joakim Noah to compliment them as well. Add to that the fact that many believed the Bulls only motivation in hiring head coach Tom Thibodeau was in attempting to lure James into the mix, and the Bulls were as good a candidate as any to go through the 2010-11 season either egg-faced or in desperate pursuit of Carmelo Anthony or some other trade deadline elixir.


Instead the Bulls have rallied whatever healthy bodies they have been able to muster behind Rose’s night-in and night-out brilliance and remain as a result viable for the top seed in the Eastern Conference. And as a result, Rose should not only be the top candidate for the league’s MVP hardware, but also may be in the argument for most improved, all while seemingly dispelling the notions that you need a team of superstars to win consistently and that Rose is anything but an ideal facilitator, leader and point-guard.


If you caught this week’s issue of Sports Illustrated and its glowing assessment of Rose’s season, you may also have noticed that Rose credits a lot of the progress he’s made this season to the off-season work that he put in with Rob McClanaghan. It goes on to list McClanaghan’s mini-camp roster of Rose, Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook, and Minnesota’s Kevin Love…arguably the three most improved players in the league this season. Begging the question: who is Rob McClanaghan?


Beyond his bio on Facebook, it’s hard to say really. What might be the better question is who’s working with Rob McClanaghan? Given the upside he’s drawn out of the three aforementioned players, it’d be prudent to see whom he spends next summer with before drafting your next fantasy basketball team. Give McClanaghan my vote for league MVP.



#2 – Riley’s Angels Reeling


The Heat had another disappointing weekend dropping games 125-95 to San Antonio and 87-86 to the Bulls in a 3-day stretch. Despite being within striking distance of both the Bulls and Celtics for the top spot in the east, the Heat are still a disturbing 15-18 against winning teams this season, and a downright depressing 2-8 in games decided by 3 points or less. These stats do not speak to deep runs into the playoffs.


Clearly the Heat are talented and interested when sprinting up and down the floor against lesser teams, but to say that they’re lost in the half court would be an understatement. The Heat has no clear direction in the half court, seeming to defer to etiquette for 3 ½ quarters of play, but in the clutch and when it matters they still have a lot to figure out.


Teams have players and they have playmakers, and some like the Heat have both. While it’s a safe bet that Kobe will get the ball in crunch time in LA and Durant will get it in Oklahoma City, pay too much attention to either and a teammate will just as likely burn you. Look no further than Oklahoma City and San Antonio against the Lakers last season in the playoffs. In each series Kobe took and end game shot to win a game and missed, and in each case an LA rebounder took advantage of the attention being paid to Kobe to get themselves a game-winning put back.


In Miami, when it comes to crunch time the big 3 becomes the big two, as Bosh is seemingly no longer an option. Whichever of the remaining big two gets the ball first is likely to shoot it. In recent games opponents have taken to single covering both Wade and James seemingly figuring one or the other will take an off balance attempt at a winner.


They have until playoff time to figure it out or they’ll get a whole summer (and possibly a lot longer) to think about it. While initial questions about the potential cohesiveness of the Heat centered around who would get the big shots, questions now abound as to who can make them. Maybe the pressure of trying to establish themselves as the defacto-options have left Wade and James with even more pressure to bear in end game situations. Until they figure it out it’s clear that the Heat can be beat, and in a 7-game series against a good team it seems almost like a sure thing.




#3 – NFL Still Winning PR Battle?


Maybe it’s the inherent doldrums of the Terps disappointing season that has cast a shadow of local disinterest over college basketball coupled with anxious anticipation about the Orioles upcoming season (the first deserving of any real level of anticipation in years) but the amount of attention being paid to the behind closed doors negotiations of the NFL and its players’ association is still somewhat surprising to me.


For now, the draft is scheduled to go off as planned, and yet while it usually feels like we’re up to NFL mock draft 5.9 or so by now, the draft anticipation of seasons past has seemingly been replaced by labor negotiation updates and speculation.


I get that we as a nation have grown to love our football year round, and maybe I’m underestimating the fervor that we’re missing with the usual round of free-agency not taking place right now, but have the machinations of NFL labor strife given us another avenue to pursue our devotion to the league or does it just seem that way?


If nothing else, last week’s extension should give fans hope that football will begin on time next year, how long it takes to get to that point is really inconsequential as long as games aren’t compromised. So until then who cares? Yet still we the sporting public seem more consumed with their legal back and forth than we are with the developing March Madness fields, the familiar sights and sounds of spring training and the most interesting looking NBA playoff field in recent memory. Maybe that’s where the league has taken us these days, to the point where even something as boring as what they’re going through right now has all but trumped actual games and seasons still taking place. Perhaps it’s exactly the reason why they’re fighting so hard. The league’s “cash pie” will continue to grow and those inconsequential looking decimals will add up to big bucks….clearly they’ve got us right where they want us.

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Merry Christmas Fridge - You're Fired

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Merry Christmas Fridge – You’re Fired

Posted on 04 January 2011 by Tom Federline

I am still reeling about this one. What in the world is going on down in Terpland? There’s a new University President, there is a new Athletic Director, the new AD publicly states Ralph Friedgen (Fridge) will be back for his final year as head coach, Fridge is awarded ACC Coach of the Year, new AD and head coach go out for a holiday dinner, Fridge is fired shortly thereafter. Mike Leach (controversial former head coach at Texas Tech), is talk of town. Happy(?) New Year 2011- new AD announces……..Randy Edsall, “recently” resigned head football coach of the Univ. of Connecticut to take the helm at UMCP. And when I say “recently”, we are talking less than 48 hours from a loss to the Oklahoma Sooners on New Years Day. The guy does have a nice track record, but did they really interview that guy?

What the heck happened at that dinner? Did Ralph not offer to pick up the tab? Fridge will be receiving 2 mill next year from his buy-out, which is about 4x what Kevin Anderson, new UMCP AD from West Point, receives as an annual salary. Did Fridge over-play his hand, by asking for a contract extension? Maybe. Did the new AD at Terpland expose himself and the University by speaking prior to thinking in November. Absolutely. Did the University disgrace itself in the eyes of alums and the sporting media? Absolutely. Did they handle the “firing” poorly? Absolutely. Did the University disrespect one of the top 5 prominent representatives from the University over the past 10 years? Absolutely. Maybe it was time for the Terp football coach to go. But man, the new “Sheriffs in town” blew this one.

I am a fan of Ralph Friedgen. I had the pleasure meeting and conversing with the man, discussing the renovations at Byrd. My kind of “old school” man. What you see is what you get. He was passionate about the football team, program and the UMCP. His overall record was 75 – 50, during his 10 year stay. 5 -2 in Bowl games. Reminder – Bowl games = cash. Where was Maryland football prior to Ralph (1990)? Were his hands tied due to supposed higher academic standards at U of M? Did he recruit “by the book”? Did he lose his recruiting edge with the loss of the supposed “coach in waiting”, James Franklin? I never quite understood that whole deal either. The University designates a successor with years remaining on the current coaches contract? It appears the man that put University of Maryland football back on the map, never had a chance.

Fridge – (not verbatim) – “I believe this team has the chance to be great. That is what I was hoping for. The powers at be do not feel I am good enough to do that.” Ouch…..give me my 2 million dollars and good luck…..you go Ralph Friedgen!

Ralph is a big man and had big expectations. Were some of those goals met? You betcha. How about an ACC Championship in football? How about getting back to Bowl games? How about at least 1/2 of a respectable renovated stadium? Yes, the Tyser Tower side, a new facility equipped with suites and a Club Level atmosphere. I still do not like that monstrosity on the north side. Ralph did bring respect back to the program.

A buddy of mine asked – Name the Terp football coaches since around 1978 (without going thru the Internet). I gave it a shot – Jerry Claiborne, Bobby Ross, Joe Krivak……….lost it……… and Ralph Friedgen. Can you all name the “fill-ins”? In the time of win, win, win, money, money, money, new, new, new…..Ralph’s time was over. And that’s a shame. “With change you may find purpose.” I hope that’s the case for all involved.

So what were some of the first words out of the chairman of the search committee’s mouth upon the new hire of Randy Edsall – (not verbatim) – “Edsall is going to recruit young men that are good citizens, good students and good athletes.” Sounds to me, like Mr. UConn is behind the eight-ball already. If there had to be a change at all, I was leaning toward the Mike Leach, character. Mr. Fridge, on behalf of all Terp alumni who follow Terp sports – “Thanks for the Memories” – (Bob Hope). You deserved a better send off. Oh and thanks for digging that dagger in a little deeper with that convincing win at the Military Bowl, so close to home.



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