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Maryland Announces Hoops Recruiting Class

Posted on 09 November 2011 by WNST Staff

Terps Sign Three for Men’s Basketball

Trio puts Maryland 17th in ESPN.com team rankings

COLLEGE PARK, Md. – The University of Maryland signed three players to National Letters-of-Intent on Wednesday, with the additions of Seth Allen, Shaquille Cleare and Jake Layman placing the Terrapins’ class 17th on ESPN.com’s national team ranking.

Allen is a 6-foot-2 guard from Fredericksburg, Va.; Cleare is a 6 -9 center from Houston and Layman is a 6-8 forward from Wrentham, Mass. The quality of the signing class, given the recent arrival of head coach Mark Turgeon and his staff on the Maryland campus, has drawn national attention.

“We’re very pleased with our class for 2012 so far,” said head coach Mark Turgeon, in his first season at Maryland. “We’ve added three quality players with great character who will fit in with our Maryland Basketball family.

“All three are very skilled basketball players who have a great feel for the game. My entire staff and the administration did a fantastic job in helping us secure these kids.”

Cleare and Layman are four-star recruits and part of ESPNU’s Top 100 prospects, according to ESPN.com. Allen is a three-star prospect and has graded at 89 on the same website. Allen was the first recruit to commit to being part of Turgeon’s program.

“I think they’ve gotten some guys who have shown that this staff, from a national perspective, will be very aggressive,” said Dave Telep, a national recruiting analyst for ESPN.com. “Turgeon is an astute evaluator of talent. If you look at this class, it’s a total national class. He’s been able to leverage some relationships he already had.

“When evaluating recruiting, and the way the calendar is now, the second year a staff is at a school is usually the better year. If you look at the class they’ve gotten, this is a very good opening effort.”

SETH ALLEN (6-2, 195, SG, Fredericksburg, Va., Fredericksburg Christian School)

Was Coach Mark Turgeon’s first commitment at Maryland… A combination guard who was ranked by ESPN.com as the sixth-best prospect in the state of Virginia… A three-star recruit who graded at 89 from ESPN… Athletic guard with 40-inch vertical leap… Led Fredericksburg Christian to a 31-2 record and conference title as a junior… Averaged 24 points, four assists, 3.5 steals and hit 92 3-pointers as a junior… Had 23 points against Montrose Christian last season… Turned 17 years old in October… Left-handed shooter… Travel team was Hoop Booth… Chose Maryland over Clemson, Old Dominion, VCU, Virginia Tech and Virginia.

Turgeon on Allen: “Seth is a very explosive athlete and scorer. He has a great feel for the game, is very good in the pick-and-roll and will be a great defender for us. Seth is a local kid with a great family who will represent Maryland the right way.”

Seth Allen: “I feel like it’s a big relief that I don’t have to go through recruitment anymore and I know I found the right school. Maryland fits me best, so it’s a big relief and I’m really happy that I’ve finally signed. My family was a big part of this and Maryland being so close was important. I wanted my family to be able to see me play. I really like Coach Turgeon and the rest of the coaching staff and I get along with the players. When I went on my official visit the coaches really motivated me; they just want everybody to get better. I think I fit in with the offense and defense so well and I think it’s going to be a good year when I get there.”

Joe Allen, father: “We’re very excited for Seth to sign with the University of Maryland and to have the chance to play at such a prestigious school. The academics, the way they have it set up, we know our son will succeed and graduate. The bigger part of it is that the coaching staff, from [Director of Athletics Kevin] Anderson on down is just absolutely, incredibly family-oriented. Seth comes from a strong family background. We can’t speak enough about the family atmosphere, the way they made us feel comfortable. It’s just a good feeling to know that he’s going into that kind of atmosphere. We’re excited about the outcome and the making of the young man that the staff at Maryland is going to build on.”

Coach Darren Berkley, Fredericksburg Christian School: “Seth is a special player… Every game he did something that amazed our coaching staff. Not only is Seth a great scorer, he has great moves and he is mentally tough. Seth’s teammates love him and want to play on his team. He has great leadership qualities and a magnetic personality that people are attracted to… My expectations are high for Seth. I truly believe he will be successful at Maryland.”

Craig Boothe, Hoop Booth Team: “Seth has by far exceeded the skill level of some of the other players in our program who have gone to Division I. I think his going to Maryland is a great fit from the perspective that he’s a family-oriented kid. Having him close will allow some of our local people to have access. He’s a great kid who was under the radar screen a little… I think this is a match made in heaven.”

SHAQUILLE CLEARE (6-9, 270, C, Houston, Texas, The Village School)

Consensus four-star prospect who is ranked as the sixth-best center in the nation by ESPN.com… Ranked 39th overall among the ESPNU Top 100… Graded at 95 by ESPN’s scouts… Has excellent strength and power which leads to solid rebounding at both ends of the floor… “A big body post with off-the-charts upside,” according to ESPN.com… Travel team was the Houston Defenders… Native of the Bahamas… Chose Maryland over Arizona, Texas, Baylor and Miami.

Turgeon on Cleare: “Shaq will give us a big, physical presence in the paint. He will be a great defender and low-post scorer for us, and for his size, he is a very explosive athlete. He is a great young man who really wanted to be at Maryland and is being very well coached by Don Harvey.”

Shaquille Cleare: “”It’s a strong conference, they have great coaches and they’re good at developing players. When Coach Turgeon left A&M and went to Maryland, it turned out well. It was so shocking to me, it was a big surprise. I think Coach Turgeon will do great things at Maryland.”

Aaron Harrison, Houston Defenders (AAU) Coach: “He’s a little different than most in that now nobody wants to play with their back to the basket. That’s how he plays and he has the best hands that I’ve seen in such a long time. I don’t think there’s a limit to his potential to be honest. If you play him one-on-one, because he’s so big and strong, he puts his body on the defender and scores. Over the summer time, we looked at it and he scored 72 percent of the time we gave him the ball on the box. He’s come a long way. He’s only been in the country for four years and when I first met him he always had good hands and feet, but he’s worked so hard to make himself better. He’s come such a long way.”

Pat Clatchey, Mount Saint Joseph’s HS (Baltimore) Head Coach: “I had the opportunity to coach Shaquille at the NBA top-100 camp. I found him to be a terrific young man on and off the court. He’s very polite and respectful off the court, engaging personality, and all business when he gets on the court. He has a big body, great hands and good footwork. He’s an interior scorer and a pretty good interior passer. I think the thing he’s going to have to develop at the next level is conditioning and getting used to day-in and day-out playing against strong and athletic bodies. But I think he’s a very good acquisition for Maryland basketball.”

Don Harvey, Village School Head Coach: “He was really, really intrigued by Coach [Gary] Williams. That’s what got it started. When Coach Williams left, Shaq was a little down about that. So we had to get him back up. The next school on his list was [Texas] A&M, and then [Mark] Turgeon ended up going to Maryland, so that made it even more [attractive]. … I think he fell in love with Maryland… (Turgeon) is a guy who you can believe is going to do things the right way. He’s going to build your character and your heart. You feel him when you talk to him. He really, and I mean really, likes Coach Turgeon.”

Dave Telep, ESPN.com: “He’s an anchor recruit. He’ll definitely grow within the program and he’s capable enough and has broad enough shoulders that he’s going to be able to be a main guy for a couple years. What is really impressive is he’s got very good touch. He’s a legitimate offensive player in the lane and is tough. He’ll be able to come into the ACC and know his way around.”

JAKE LAYMAN (6-8, 190, SF, Wrentham, Mass., King Philip Regional HS)

Listed by ESPN.com as the top recruit from the state of Massachusetts… Graded at 94 by the website, which has him 11th nationally among small forwards… Ranked 53rd nationally on ESPNU’s Top 100… Long, athletic player with deceptive quickness… Averaged 24.6 points, 15.6 rebounds, 7.1 blocks as a junior at King Philip Regional… Travel team was Boston Amateur Basketball Club under the guidance of Celtics administrator Leo Papile… Chose Maryland over Syracuse, Louisville, Florida, Notre Dame and Providence

Turgeon on Layman: “Jake is a very skilled and explosive athlete who is improving at a big-time rate. Jake has all three phases in his game with the ability to knock down the 3, shoot the mid-range, plus get all the way to the basket. He is also a tremendous defender with great anticipation. Jake comes from a great family, and we are excited about welcoming into our basketball family.”

Jake Layman: “It’s a dream come true for me to sign with Maryland and I couldn’t be happier. The school, Coach Turgeon and all the other coaches, I love them and I get along with the players really well so that was good. The coaching staff is down to earth and easy to talk to so that made me feel comfortable. I know they’re all tough coaches so I think that will help me grow a lot. I’m very excited about the opportunity to play in the best conference in America and play at the Comcast Center.”

Claire Layman, mother: “For my husband and I and our whole family, when we came for the official visit, with Coach Turgeon, Coach Spinelli and the entire coaching staff, we just had such a feeling that this was the right place for Jake. We felt all along that the ACC was a good fit for Jake’s skill set and I think with the University, over the recruiting period, what became clear to us is how important it was for Jake to be able to play where his family could be part of it too… The basketball was really important to Jake but just the University itself I think has everything Jake wants academically and it just was a really good fit. Maryland has so much to offer and it was really just a perfect fit.”

Dave Telep, ESPN.com: “When Jake hit his stride this summer, you were either there to see it or you weren’t. For those who saw it, he immediately became a priority recruit. What not many people will know is he’s a heck of a defensive player. In one tournament where they kept stats, he certainly led everyone in steals per minute.”

Paul Biancardi, ESPN.com: “Jake has a lot of tools and is just scratching the surface of his potential. He can shoot and score in a lot of ways. He’s also got athleticism and size to go along with his scoring ability. He’s a guy who is going to get better each and every day.”

Leo Papile, Boston Amateur Basketball Club: “He’s a young, developing guy with enormous potential and upside. The best is yet to come… At 6-9, with the ability to guard guys down on the floor, he’s totally unique for American basketball. He’s a wing… You put him on the ball and, in our (full-court) defense, he just wreaks havoc with his mobility. He was bound to just make an enormous impact on the national scene.”

Coach Sean McInnis, King Philip Regional HS: “It’s a fantastic time for Jake and his family. They’re really looking forward to being a part of the Maryland family… I think when you look around the country, he’s probably the only kid who’s 6-8 that plays the point… I think what Maryland was looking for was a student-athlete that’s going to come in, defend, and play a couple positions while at the same time playing in transition, utilizing some size at the guard position.”

THE CLASS OVERALL

Paul Biancardi, ESPN.com: “This class is well-balanced between guys who can help immediately and guys who can be brought along and will make their mark in the ACC. Mark does a good job of evaluating players and a good job of developing them. He’s put together an all-star recruiting staff there. When they’re not out recruiting, they’re thinking about recruiting.”

Some quotes courtesy The Baltimore Sun.

– Terps –

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The 15-7-0 Of The Century

Posted on 07 November 2011 by Glenn Clark

You know how it works. 15 positive football observations, 7 “not so” positive football observations and one “oh no” moment from outside the world of football.

(As a reminder, we don’t do Baltimore Ravens analysis here. We do PLENTY of that elsewhere. This is about the rest of the world of football.)

15 Positive Observations…

1. If you have to make a trip to Orono, Maine you might as well go ahead and get a victory.

Which is what I guess the Towson Tigers figured they would do to move back into a first place in the CAA…

Terrance West ran all over the Black Bears, much like he’s done to everyone else in the conference. Towson has a completely legitimate chance to win the conference. I almost can’t believe I’m typing that.

2. Julio Jones did something Sunday you’re not capable of.

The Atlanta Falcons traded away many things to get this man on their team. If he keeps playing like he did against the Indianapolis Colts it will go down as one of the greatest decisions in National Football League history…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8yNx7EyDECQ

As far as Indy in concerned, things have gotten so bad that at one point QB Curtis Painter threw two forward passes on the same play. No really, this actually happened. He wears the same number as Bert Jones. That’s where the similarities end.

3. Remember when the New York Giants and San Diego Chargers swapped Eli Manning & Phillip Rivers? The Giants put another point on the scoreboard Sunday.

There were many amazing things about the Giants’ come from behind win over the New England Patriots in Foxborough, notably the plays made from Eli Manning to Jake Ballard to win the game. But NOTHING I could share with you would be as good as the footage of Michael Strahan celebrating the win while the cameras were “off” at FOX…

During the Sunday Night Football halftime show, Bob Costas pointed out that Ballard’s number (85) was the same number worn by David Tyree in Super Bowl XLII. Pretty good.

(Puts on “Superfriends” announcer voice)

“MEANWHILE….IN SAN DIEGO….”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XPr0Z4q_vXk

Phillip Rivers nearly figured out a way to beat the NFC (and NFL)’s best team. The reason why he “nearly” figured it out is because part of beating the best team in the the league is NOT repeatedly throwing the ball to them.

I feel like Aaron Rodgers is getting dangerously close to “so good we can’t possibly like him” territory by the way.

4. You only get to win a “Game of the Century” every now and then, so I’m pretty LSU doesn’t care how ugly things were Saturday night in Tuscaloosa.

And now we deal with the fact that we might well have to see the Tigers face Alabama again in the BCS Championship Game if Oklahoma State and Stanford falter.

Don’t get me wrong, this was a great game even if it wasn’t always beautiful to look at. LSU now has the fast track to a national title and it’s hard to imagine anyone not named Alabama beating them.

5. While Kellen Moore has done no wrong, Andrew Luck can clinch the Heisman Trophy next week against Oregon.

Kellen Moore wasn’t necessarily brilliant, but he surpassed Colt McCoy as the all-time winningest quarterback in NCAA history in Boise State’s win at UNLV…

Kellen Moore’s season only remains interesting however if Luck begins to stumble. Their national TV (ABC) game Saturday night against Oregon will be Luck’s chance to follow up on his performance against USC with a “clincher”. Probably. He had some early struggles, but was good again Saturday against Oregon State…

Trent Richardson remains third on my list-but he’s currently third on a list of two. Case Keenum heads the “others receiving votes” category.

6. Tim Tebow we love you again…at least for now.

Tim Tebow by no means beat the Oakland Raiders on his own (Denver Broncos teammates Willis McGahee, Eddie Royal & Eric Decker certainly helped), but what the hell do we care about anyone who plays in the Mile High City not named Tim Tebow?

By the way, the Broncos are only a game out of first place in the AFC West. And thank God the Raiders solved all of their problems by trading for Carson Palmer.

7. The New York Jets have bounced back well enough that Rex Ryan should say something idiotic any moment now.

The Jets kicked the Buffalo Bills’ asses Sunday in Orchard Park. Instead of showing the highlights, let’s all laugh at Mark Sanchez flinching when lined up out wide against Drayton Florence…

That’s more humorous than Ashton Kutcher on “Two & A Half Men.” But then again, what isn’t?

There’s a mess atop the AFC East, as these teams and the Pats all have three losses. I hope they all end up with six personally.

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The 15-7-0 Might Be Tricky, But It’s Always A Treat

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The 15-7-0 Might Be Tricky, But It’s Always A Treat

Posted on 31 October 2011 by Glenn Clark

You know how it works. 15 positive football observations, 7 “not so” positive football observations and one “oh no” moment from outside the world of football.

(As a reminder, we don’t do Baltimore Ravens analysis here. We do PLENTY of that elsewhere. This is about the rest of the world of football.)

15 Positive Observations…

1. With the entire country winning, Andrew Luck looked like a Heisman Trophy winner and future #1 pick Saturday night in Los Angeles.

It’s a shame the USC Trojans gave the ball away just outside the endzone in overtime number three against Stanford. Not only because I picked the Cardinal to lose last Thursday when I played John Allen (of Charm City Devils fame) in “Everybody Beats Glenn”, but also because it was a hell of a game.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rx7vpD_D4g0[/youtube]

I’ll go ahead and move Luck ahead of Boise State QB Kellen Moore on my Heisman Watch list. Yeah, I guess I’m a sellout. But it’s hard not to like what you see with this kid. Alabama RB Trent Richardson is third on my list; which now ends at three because one of those guys will be your winner.

Going back to Saturday night, Andrew Luck also did this…

luck

2. Marvin Lewis is (very deservingly) the winningest coach in Cincinnati Bengals history.

I get more and more concerned about the Ravens’ pending matchups with the Bengals every time I watch them…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u0an-M9us5Y[/youtube]

They did all of that without Cedric Benson and they were playing the Seahawks IN Seattle.

By the way, did you know Adam “Pacman” Jones was still in the NFL? Me neither.

3. I’ll assume Frank Gore is particularly happy to no longer be thought of as “the best player on a bad team.”

Also part of the San Francisco 49ers’ win over the Cleveland Browns? Joe Staley playing the role of “Offensive Lineman” in “Offensive Lineman makes catch, runs with football”….

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JDTJcYX4hQA[/youtube]

Just beautiful. By the way, I guess the Niners have to be number two in my new NFL power rankings, right? How’s that possible?

4. Penn State controls their own destiny to reach the Big Ten Championship Game, but their schedule leads you to believe Ohio State is still very much in the mix.

Joe Paterno passed Eddie Robinson as the all-time winningest coach in Division I history as Penn State beat Illinois. It was the only time the word “pass” was used in Happy Valley Saturday. I don’t care for much of anything about the Nittany Lions, but I respect their students for packing in behind the goalposts to try to make the Illini’s tying field goal try harder…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j-4XhbiILGI[/youtube]

Things get VERY difficult for PSU now, as they host Nebraska in State College next week before finishing conference play with trips to Columbus and Madison. Speaking of which…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iwuXzK5Mehs[/youtube]

Wisconsin fans were once again hoping a penalty flag could save them, but Braxton Miller did NOT cross the line of scrimmage before throwing the game winner to Devin Smith. Russell Wilson’s Heisman hopes are totally up in smoke, and the Badgers are now a long shot (at best) for the Rose Bowl, while the Buckeyes are still very much in the picture.

5. Nebraska is firmly back in the race for the Other spot in the Big Ten title game, and Michigan is by no means out of the picture.

Michigan State had no magic left after an incredible two weeks-or more realistically had no answer for some dude named Rex Burkhead, who reportedly plays for the Cornhuskers…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TiYLzEwG16Y[/youtube]

Elsewhere in the world of bizarre football names, the Wolverines stomped Purdue thanks to a running back whose name is (seriously) Fitzgerald Toussaint. Shouldn’t he be playing for Dartmouth?

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BXTWG9xmjgs[/youtube]

Not part of the Big Ten title picture? Iowa. They lost to Minnesota. Yes. That Minnesota.

6. Stephen Tulloch may have shut down the internet after sacking Tim Tebow in the Detroit Lions’ win over the Denver Broncos.

We’ll start with the highlights…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tc7Zp6FdEVU[/youtube]

And now for those that missed it in the video…

tulloch

I like Tim Tebow. I also like this. It is what it is.

7. I guess we can assume the Philadelphia Eagles are just fine at this point.

The Eagles DESTROYED the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday Night Football. Sadly the highlight of the game was a Laurent Robinson catch that didn’t count at all…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1FwDZz-a6r8[/youtube]

The SNF broadcast was obsessed with Philly O-Line coach Howard Mudd. I actually have no issue with that. Howard Mudd is awesome. Otherwise they’d have been obsessed with Rob Ryan, and I’m about done with that.

Also of note, Jason Kelce snapped the ball off his own ass at one point…

kelce

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The #Occupy15-7-0 Campaign Hasn’t Really Caught On Yet

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The #Occupy15-7-0 Campaign Hasn’t Really Caught On Yet

Posted on 17 October 2011 by Glenn Clark

You know how it works. 15 positive football observations, 7 “not so” positive football observations and one “oh no” moment from outside the world of football.

(As a reminder, we don’t do Baltimore Ravens analysis here. We do PLENTY of that elsewhere. This is about the rest of the world of football.)

15 Positive Observations…

1. After beating Old Dominion in miraculous fashion, I understand why Towson Coach Rob Ambrose’s first comment was “Oh my God!”

If you’re not aware, the Tigers topped ODU after trailing by 11 points late in the fourth quarter. They recovered an onside kick and then completed the miracle when QB Grant Enders found WR Tom Ryan for a 63 yard TD on 4th and 29.

Impossible?

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z93IQd7oaw4&feature=related[/youtube]

This season his been crazy for Towson football. I’m more and more surprised they didn’t win in College Park.

2. The Green Bay Packers are so good that even when they’re not very good they win.

Seriously, the defending Super Bowl champs (and last remaining undefeated team) did absolutely NOTHING in the second half. No matter, they had already ensured themselves a blowout victory.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r1hNThbRuqQ[/youtube]

Yes, that WAS AJ Hawk flipping off his own sideline. I don’t get it either.

hawk

3. I’ll assume Michael Turner’s big performance Sunday came because he heard I had picked the Atlanta Falcons to win the Super Bowl before the season.

But it’s not as though I feel any more comfortable about my chances of being right.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fd1WLndlnrA[/youtube]

I liked Cam Newton’s Deion Sanders dance. I would assume Panthers fans would prefer that he win games. He will.

4. I’m keeping Kellen Moore and Trent Richardson just ahead of Andrew Luck and Russell Wilson in my Heisman Trophy watch. (Landry Jones is now 5th for me if you’re scoring at home).

I’m sure this keeps you up at night. Russell Wilson had the best highlight of the weekend in Wisconsin’s blowout win over Indiana…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xzTmnQNUWfs[/youtube]

Trent Richardson had both the best game of his career and perhaps the best juke of all time in Alabama’s win over Ole Miss…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1HaGJaJOjQw[/youtube]

But I put Kellen Moore at the top of the list a few weeks ago and he hasn’t done anything to make me change my mind. Certainly not in Boise State’s blowout win over Colorado State…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Obt4pqafnLA[/youtube]

Luck was great again in Stanford’s big win over Washington State, but he might have been upstaged by teammate Ty Montgomery…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lb2LUWV6S48[/youtube]

Landry Jones should probably not be making his first appearance in my Top 5. Hey, it’s my list jerks. He was really good in Oklahoma’s win over Kansas…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wefV1zoReY8[/youtube]

5. So let me get this straight. Ryan Tannehill was a great receiver, now he’s a great quarterback and he might go on to be an orthopedic surgeon? I wish I had one skill.

Tannehill threw four TD’s to Ryan Swope alone in Texas A&M’s big win over Baylor Saturday…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kcH0_drbtu8[/youtube]

In the loss, Bears QB Robert Griffin III…I don’t know how to describe this. I’m just glad Gus Johnson called it…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sztf9JpzDEM[/youtube]

Elsewhere in the Big 12, Oklahoma State and Texas traded kickoff return TD’s. And otherwise the Cowboys kicked the Longhorns’ asses…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wiTrot49na4[/youtube]

6. The New York Giants got a nice win over the Buffalo Bills. How the hell did they lose to the Seattle Seahawks last week?

It wasn’t a good 4th quarter for Drayton Florence…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CbZd7OAxyZ0[/youtube]

But really, they lost to the Seahawks last week. How in the hell is that possible?

7. Attention Tom Brady: We get it. You’re good at quarterbacking.

He came up with a big time throw to Aaron Hernandez to help the New England Patriots beat the Dallas Cowboys…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c11qzU8HVAQ[/youtube]

By law, we’ll all be talking about Tony Romo on Monday instead of anything that happened in the game. Right up until we remember Tim Tebow is playing again next weekend.

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The 15-7-0 Doesn’t Have a Diploma To Burn Even If It Wanted To

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The 15-7-0 Doesn’t Have a Diploma To Burn Even If It Wanted To

Posted on 03 October 2011 by Glenn Clark

You know how it works. 15 positive football observations, 7 “not so” positive football observations and one “oh no” moment from outside the world of football.

(As a reminder, we don’t do Ravens analysis here. We do PLENTY of that elsewhere. This is about the rest of the world of football.)

15 Positive Observations..

1. The Packers are the best team in the NFL, but you already knew that

I’m not really sure what else can be said about Green Bay. Aaron Rodgers is amazing. The team is incredibly deep.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=begTfGMrsq8[/youtube]

I was wondering the other day why the NFL wouldn’t put a Super Bowl at Lambeau Field if they’re going to have one in New Jersey. Then I had a sandwich. It was quite a day.

Side note: I’m extremely jealous of sports fans in Wisconsin. They the Packers, the Badgers (more on them next) and the Milwaukee Brewers rocking and rolling. SportsGrid.com noted that Sunday’s Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel headline is the happiest in sports history…

mjs

2. Kellen Moore leads the way, but Trent Richardson and Russell Wilson have joined my personal Heisman Trophy Top 5 list

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o5lG8G67UFY[/youtube]
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8tnWKrQvss0[/youtube]
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ysCN4yA8hhs[/youtube]

The others in my Top 5 are South Carolina RB Marcus Lattimore and Baylor QB Robert Griffin III. Lattimore had a tough day Saturday and Griffin threw his first interception of the year (really) in the Bears’ loss to Kansas State. After you watch the profile ESPN’s College Gameday did of him Saturday morning you’ll certainly forget that ever happened…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mhyqhn1LJps[/youtube]

3. It’s clearly a mistake that I DON’T have Andrew Luck or Tyrann Mathieu on my Heisman Trophy Top 5 list right now

Andrew Luck is a quarterback. So explain to me how he did THIS in Stanford’s win over UCLA Saturday night…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=89wGMqET3AM[/youtube]

Side note: A few sites found this video of the ESPN ticker showing an odd UCLA-Stanford score during the Nebraska-Wisconsin game. I don’t believe it was accurate…

stanforducla

Few people know who Tyrann Mathieu is. Fewer know how to pronounce his name. No one knows how to spell it. But Kentucky fans will never forget any of those things about the LSU CB I assume…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tnWQp_V_dXc[/youtube]

4. It’s crazy how good Devin Hester is at returning punts

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2OjqEZQmZwo[/youtube]

Also stemming from Sunday in the Windy City…

-I don’t know if Steve Smith is still happy the Carolina Panthers didn’t trade him, but it was the absolute right decision based on wanting to develop Cam Newton.

-Matt Forte also ran all over the place and the Chicago Bears looked good in a win. I’m still not buying into them, but I’m a Jay Cutler hater so my opinion should only matter so much.

-Here’s Marion Barber faceplanting after attempting a backflip when he scored a touchdown in the game. Enjoy!

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_c30cSwjPDk[/youtube]

5. Maybe the Tennessee Titans CAN survive without Kenny Britt?

Nate Washington looked good and Jared Cook finally showed why I drafted him to my fantasy team this year (although I already dropped him needing depth), but I’m still not convinced they can keep treading water without Britt…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P1kY2FO2wxk[/youtube]

…in other news, I told Cleveland Browns fans last week to take a picture of the AFC North standings. I hope they took my advice.

6. I want to put Tajh Boyd on my Heisman watch list too. Can I have a Top 10 instead of a Top 5?

I’m confused. Clemson looked good against Auburn, then again against Florida State, then AGAIN against Virginia Tech. Who are these Tigers and what have they done with the roller coaster team we’ve all come to know and not love?

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MRRc3n4D-Cc[/youtube]

I still think the Hokies are a factor in the ACC before the season is over. I think a lot of things. Like for example, who is Melissa Giraldo and why is this the first I’ve heard of her? (Thanks Busted Coverage!)

7. Not only is the SEC better than the other conferences in the FBS, SEC fans are better than fans in other conferences in the FBS

Here are the highlights from a thrilling Arkansas win over Texas A&M at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, which included an incredible 510 passing yards from Razorbacks QB Tyler Wilson…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nVsLYxOsr2o[/youtube]

And here’s the .gif of the shirtless “man of a larger carriage” celebrating SOMETHING the Hogs did Saturday…

hogs

That’s just fantastic.

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Like The Rest Of You, The 15-7-0 Is Worried For Maryland Against Towson

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Like The Rest Of You, The 15-7-0 Is Worried For Maryland Against Towson

Posted on 26 September 2011 by Glenn Clark

You know how it works. 15 positive football observations, 7 “not so” positive football observations and one “oh no” moment from outside the world of football.

You might be able to guess what it is.

(As a reminder, we don’t do Baltimore Ravens analysis here. We do PLENTY of that elsewhere. This is about the rest of the world of football.)

15 Positive Observations…

1. Towson has a legitimate chance against Maryland next week, and everyone knows it

Let me start by reminding everyone how happy I am for the Tigers. I love Rob Ambrose, I love the entire TU program. My girlfriend is a Towson alum. She’s also MUCH prettier than I am. I’m thrilled for the school after their Homecoming blowout win over Colgate (heard as always on AM1570 WNST.net) and their 3-0 start…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vKl0F5lsAPg[/youtube]

It’s just that…I can’t even begin to think about how much crap I’m going to take if the Tigers end up going down to College Park and beat the Terps at Byrd Stadium. After the GARBAGE performance Maryland put together against Temple, there has to be concern…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6MjuCdYnesQ[/youtube]

Yeah. I’m sweating.

2. I can’t figure out if I’m happier for Buffalo or Detroit at 3-0

What I do know is that both of their games Sunday were AWESOME…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qgF_9Kxhgqs[/youtube]
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GKpZnZ8fUvI[/youtube]

If I don’t get the Ravens in Indianapolis, I feel as though I’d be willing to accept Bills-Lions. It’s the next most likely scenario, right?

3. As soon as the Texans regained a 4th quarter advantage, I absolutely knew the Saints were going to march back down and win the game

I just didn’t know it would happen after a very elaborate game of pinball…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6rtBowfEXgI[/youtube]

Do you think anything previously came up when you YouTubed Kevin Walter?

4. Clemson was just so very un-Clemson-like Saturday

I’m so confused. The Tigers were clutch in big victories in back to back weeks. Don’t they know who they are???

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hS0PJjgV0Jc[/youtube]

We’re not a month into the season, but Tajh Boyd is the ACC Player of the Year thus far. I know weirdos who care about things like that.

Oh, and Florida State’s Rashad Green has a question. Who builds a brick wall around a football field?

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fDTi1znVjSQ&feature=channel_video_title[/youtube]

5. This week in “Why the SEC is better than you”, Marquis Maze and Morris Claiborne might not have stopped running yet

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y2CJUuR3ypU[/youtube]
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ihvnMC1h95U[/youtube]

You know how impressive Alabama is? They beat a Top 15 team thoroughly and their amazing punt return TD might not have been the coolest play of the game…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G7vrngQ2KZ4[/youtube]

How do you think the Crimson Tide would do against Temple?

As a side note, I have NO IDEA what the story is behind the LSU “grandma kegstand” video making the rounds on YouTube, but I can understand why some folks believe it to be awesome…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yTgHismrNo0[/youtube] 

6. I was way wrong when I started the season with the Oakland Raiders at the bottom of my power rankings

They’re better than that. They’re certainly faster…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mhUbvrI8MqM[/youtube]

Darren McFadden. Denarius Moore. Michael Bush. Jacoby Ford. Darrius Heyw-four out of five ain’t bad.

Side note. The fake Kevin Anderson Twitter account mentioned Sunday that Ravens WR Torrey Smith had more TD receptions Sunday than DHB has had in his NFL career. It is what it is.

Oh, and here’s the picture of Jets QB Mark Sanchez getting his nose set after having it broken…

sanchez

Ravens-Jets Sunday night at M&T Bank Stadium. Creativity is in your corner, Charm City.

7. Cam Newton wasn’t amazing this week, but I’m guessing this is the first of what will be a bunch of wins for him

One of the few cool things that happened in this one was Blaine Gabbert’s monsoon hail mary toss to Mike Thomas…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ykDKf9BN-HE[/youtube]

The rest of everything that happened in this one was pretty awful. At one point the score was 5-3 Panthers. I had assumed it was the 2nd inning and Brian Matusz started for the Jaguars.

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The 15-7-0 Wants To Kick Floyd Mayweather’s Ass Too…

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The 15-7-0 Wants To Kick Floyd Mayweather’s Ass Too…

Posted on 19 September 2011 by Glenn Clark

You know how it works. 15 positive football observations, 7 “not so” positive football observations and one “oh no” moment from outside the world of football.

You might be able to guess what it is.

(As a reminder, we don’t do Ravens analysis here. We do PLENTY of that elsewhere. This is about the rest of the world of football.)

15 Positive Observations…

1. Navy won’t want to hear it, but they SHOULD take a moral victory from their loss to South Carolina

I get it. No one likes moral victories. But the Midshipmen went to Columbia, faced a completely legit Top 10 Gamecocks team and had them on their heels throughout.

Unfortunately for the Mids, they didn’t have Marcus Lattimore. He’s apparently pretty good…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yePpMCe5jlQ[/youtube]

2. Tom Brady and Drew Brees are good at football. Why doesn’t anyone ever talk about them?

I feel like everyone’s always talking about stars like Bruce Gradkowski and Alex Smith. Why doesn’t anyone ever talk about the little guys in New England and New Orleans?

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X51CGE5F3SE[/youtube]
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mtolk6obLaA[/youtube]

I of course picked San Diego to beat the Patriots. But really, what the eff do I know about football anyway?

If you enjoy watching fat men run (and who doesn’t?), have another look at Vince Wilfork’s interception…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pa8TXMrxtwA[/youtube]

3. Since appearing on WNST, Baltimore native Jim Schwartz has seen his Detroit Lions outscore their opponents 48-3

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOVSwObVY_c[/youtube]

Of course that’s because the Mt. St. Joe grad joined Drew Forrester on “The Morning Reaction” Friday before the Lions put the 45 point pounding on the Kansas City Chiefs.

Also this weekend Justin Verlander won his 24th game and the Detroit Tigers clinched the AL Central. In Charm City this weekend we watched the Ravens lose to the Titans and we have no freaking clue what the Orioles might have done.

Am I really feeling jealousy towards the Motor City?

4. I’m gonna go ahead and stop picking against Boise State now

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kIJI2Bz5iZM[/youtube]

In three games this season, I’ve picked Boise State to lose twice. I thought a SEC power like Georgia would teach them a lesson in Atlanta. I thought an upstart like Toledo would pull the stunner at home after nearly toppling Ohio State.

Look, we call my picks segment “Everybody Beats Glenn” for a reason.

5. Jesse Holley is the greatest* Wide Receiver to ever win a TV reality show

If you don’t know the story, Jesse Holley won Michael Irvin’s SpikeTV reality show “4th & Long” to get a spot in Dallas Cowboys Training Camp. He went from that to the practice squad, from the practice squad to the active roster, from the active roster to making his first NFL catch, from making his first NFL catch to coming within a foot of beating the 49ers…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QBC-KMKxtQY[/youtube]

…from coming within a foot of beating the 49ers to holding a celebration that I believe is still going on at this moment.

Oh yeah, Tony Romo played this game with a fractured rib. We’re not going to talk about that though because it doesn’t involve him humping Jessica Simpson. (But it should!)

6. The Buffalo Bills are all that’s right with America…or something like that

I have no idea if the Bills are any good, but Ryan Fitzpatrick is fun to watch and I can support the idea of the Oakland Raiders losing.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1eA7aQhdvF0[/youtube]

The Bills have more wins thus far this season than Lee Evans does. Chew on that.

7. Oklahoma was about as much better than Florida State as everyone thought they were

Why don’t my teams ever make plays like the one Sooners QB Landry Jones and WR Kenny Stills made the other night?

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ca3alwOeKb0[/youtube]

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Dear Football, Please Just Come Back Already

Posted on 15 June 2011 by Glenn Clark

Dear Football-

It didn’t hit me until Tuesday night. To be totally honest with you, I’ve been really enjoying some of the other things going on in the world of sports since you left my life in February.

My favorite NHL team (the Phoenix Coyotes) were quickly swept out by the Detroit Red Wings, but the Stanley Cup playoffs have been really good otherwise. Most of the cities I don’t like have already seen their teams eliminated (Pittsburgh, Washington, New York) and the Vancouver Canucks have the opportunity to deliver the most painful heartbreak to Boston Wednesday night, with a chance to win a Game 7 at home against the Bruins.

There’s been a ton of scoring but still a ton of close games, and the hockey playoffs in general have been pretty good.

My favorite NBA team (the Phoenix Suns) didn’t even qualify for postseason play, but it had little effect on how exciting the NBA playoffs were. Between the Los Angeles Lakers getting swept out, Greivis Vasquez and the Memphis Grizzlies getting within a game of the Western Conference Finals and the riveting series the Dallas Mavericks and Miami Heat played in the NBA Finals, the postseason was thrilling.

Even those of us that don’t spend too much time watching regular season hoops found ourselves making postseason games destination television.

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Turgeon Formally Announces Maryland Staff

Posted on 20 May 2011 by WNST Staff

Here is the official release, courtesy of the Terps’ Sports Information Department…

TURGEON ANNOUNCES COACHING STAFF

Spinelli, Hill join Ranson as assistant coaches

COLLEGE PARK, Md. – Head men’s basketball coach Mark Turgeon announced Friday that Scott Spinelli, Dalonte Hill and Bino Ranson will be the assistant coaches on his new Terrapin staff. In addition, Dustin Clark has been hired as the director of basketball operations.

“I feel good about the talent of the assistant coaches we have assembled,” said Turgeon. “They all have their own unique abilities as coaches that, as a group, will make us complete. They all have been successful recruiting this part of the country and will be a big part of the resurgence of Maryland Basketball.”

Spinelli will join Turgeon for the sixth straight season, having worked with him during each of Turgeon’s four years at Texas A&M and for one season at Wichita State. He was the Aggies’ associate head coach and helped direct the program to four straight NCAA Tournament appearances.

Hill, a native of Washington, D.C., will join the Terrapins’ staff after six seasons at Kansas State. Long noted for his recruiting ties to the D.C. area, Hill helped a resurgence in the Wildcat basketball program that had Kansas State hit the 20-win plateau for a school-record five straight years.

Ranson will be retained as an assistant after he spent last season on the staff of retired coach Gary Williams. A native of Baltimore, Ranson has strong recruiting ties in that area and aided in the recent recruitment and retention of shooting guard Nick Faust.

Clark has been an athletics assistant for three years and, last year, moved into the role as team administrator on Turgeon’s staff with the Aggies. A graduate of Texas A&M, he has played an important role in recruiting and in the recent success of the Aggies’ basketball program.

Bios on the new staff members follow:

SCOTT SPINELLI

Hometown: Leominster, Mass.

Education: Boston University ‘89

Following five seasons on various staffs for head coach Mark Turgeon, Scott Spinelli comes to College Park to be part of the coaching staff at the University of Maryland.

“Scott is a bulldog recruiter with tremendous connection up and down the east coast,” said Turgeon. “He is also an excellent coach with a tremendous basketball mind.”

Spinelli sent four seasons with Turgeon as the associate head coach at Texas A&M, and was in the same position with Turgeon at Wichita State in 2006-07.

Prior to that, he was an assistant at Nebraska for three seasons, when he helped land two nationally-ranked recruiting classes. He was the Cornhuskers’ associate head coach in 2005-06. All-Big 12 center Aleks Maric was among the players he signed at Nebraska.

From 2001-03, Spinelli was an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator at Loyola-Chicago. He helped the Ramblers to 32 wins over two seasons (2001-02 and 2002-03) — the program’s most in a two-year span since the mid-1980s — including a berth in the championship game of the 2002 Horizon League Tournament.

Spinelli recruited and developed Paul McMillan, a junior-college transfer who won the Horizon League’s Newcomer of the Year Award in 2003. His first recruiting class for the Ramblers also included Terrance Whiters, who was ranked among the top 70 overall prospects in the country and among the top 20 point guards by ESPN.com.

Spinelli has been recognized by several media outlets as one of the nation’s top assistant coaches. Before joining the Ramblers, Spinelli spent one year as a scout for the Philadelphia 76ers, evaluating players in the Big East and Atlantic 10 conferences, along with high school players from the Northeast.

Spinelli served as an assistant coach for Cincinnati of the International Basketball League (IBL) in 1999-2000, helping the Stuff to an Eastern Conference regular-season championship.

Prior to his work in the IBL, Spinelli spent two years as associate head coach (1997-99) at American University in Washington, D.C., where he was responsible for two nationally-recognized recruiting classes. Spinelli’s first collegiate coaching stop came at Wyoming in 1996-97.

He began his coaching career on the prep level in 1990 at the Milford Academy, where he spent three seasons as head coach. In 1993, Spinelli started the basketball program at The Winchendon School in Winchendon, Mass., where he produced several Division I players. The school remains one of the top prep school programs in the Northeast.

The Leominster, Mass., native earned his bachelor’s degree from Boston University in 1989. As a student-athlete, Spinelli initially walked on with the Terriers before earning a scholarship as a point guard under Mike Jarvis, who went on to a successful stint as head coach at St. John’s.

Spinelli and his wife, Lynn, have three children: Gianna, Gabriel and Joseph.

SPINELLI CAREER

2007-11 – Associate Head Coach, Texas A&M
2006-07 – Associate Head Coach, Wichita State
2005-06 – Associate Head Coach, Nebraska
2003-05 – Assistant Coach, Nebraska
2001-03 – Assistant Coach, Loyola-Chicago
2000-01 – Scout, Philadelphia 76ers
1999-00 – Assistant Coach, Cincinnati Stuff
1997-99 – Associate Head Coach, American University
1996-97 – Assistant Coach, Wyoming
1993-96 – Head Coach, Winchendon (Mass.) School
1990-93 – Head Coach, Milford (N.Y.) Academy

DALONTE HILL

Hometown: Washington, D.C.

Education: Charlotte ‘01

Noted as one of the top coaches and recruiters nationally, Dalonte Hill is coming home to the Washington, D.C., area to join the staff of head coach Mark Turgeon.

“It was great to be able to bring Dalonte home,” said Turgeon. “He is a terrific recruiter and will be a great addition to our staff. His relationships on the east coast will be huge for the growth of our program.”

A native of Washington, D.C., Hill was hired as an assistant coach at Kansas State by former head coach Bob Huggins in April 2006 after three seasons at Charlotte.  He was elevated to associate head coach and recruiting coordinator just over a year later upon the promotion of Frank Martin to head coach.

Hill played a significant role in helping to revitalize the K-State program, which has tallied five consecutive 20-win seasons for the first time in school history.  With his help, the Wildcats have posted 118 wins the past five seasons, including 50 in Big 12 play, and have advanced to the postseason in an unprecedented five straight seasons, including trips to the NCAA Tournament in 2008, 2010 and 2011.

The 118 wins are the most in school history in a five-year span, shattering the previous mark of 107 wins set from 1957-62, while the 50 conference victories are the most since the squad posted 56 from 1971-76.  K-State is one of four Big 12 schools (along with Kansas, Texas and Texas A&M) in that span to total five 20-win seasons, while the Wildcats and Jayhawks are the only teams to finish in the top-4 in the Big 12 and receive a bye at the Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship in each of the past five seasons.

Hill has also played a major role in helping Kansas State land some of the country’s best recruiting classes, including the nation’s top-rated class by Scout.com and Rivals.com in 2006, which included No. 1 recruit Michael Beasley and No. 6 recruit Bill Walker.  In 2008, he helped the Wildcats pull down their second top-20 class in the past three seasons, including their fourth McDonald’s All-American (and second in last four seasons) in Wally Judge.  The four-man class was rated 17th by Scout/ESPN.com and 18th by Rivals.com.

Hill spent three seasons as an assistant coach at Charlotte under Bobby Lutz.  He helped guide his alma mater to a 61-30 (.760) overall record and three consecutive postseason appearances from 2003-06, including a pair of trips to the NCAA Tournament (2004, 2005).  He also helped the 49ers to a share of the 2004 Conference USA regular-season title as well as runner-up finishes in C-USA in 2004-05 and the Atlantic 10 in 2005-06.

During his tenure at Charlotte, Hill helped coach two All-Americans, one C-USA Player of the Year and seven all-conference players. Two 49ers earned All-America distinction as Eddie Basden and Curtis Withers were named to SI.com’s third team and honorable mention lists in 2005.  Withers was also named to Basketball Times’ All-America third team in 2004.  A two-time conference Defensive Player of the Year, Basden was selected as the 2005 Conference USA Player of the Year as well as the national Defensive Player of the Year by CollegeInsider.com.

Prior to joining the college ranks, Hill served two years as the head coach of the AAU’s DC Assault.

A three-year letterman at Charlotte from 1997-2000, Hill played on three postseason squads for the 49ers under head coaches Melvin Watkins and Bobby Lutz.  As a true freshman in 1997-98, he averaged 4.2 points and 2.9 rebounds in 26 games with one start for the 49ers in helping the squad to the second round of the NCAA Tournament with a 20-11 record.  As a sophomore, the 49ers captured the 1999 Conference USA Tournament title and once again advanced to the NCAA Tournament second round with a 23-11 record.  During the 1999-2000 season, he averaged 6.2 points and 3.5 rebounds in 23 games with 11 starts in helping Charlotte earn a Postseason NIT bid with a 17-16 record.

Hill transferred to Bowie State for his senior season where he averaged 10.9 points and 5.7 rebounds in helping the Bulldogs to a 19-9 record.  He returned to Charlotte following the season to complete his bachelor’s degree in sociology in 2001.

Hill and his wife, Tish, have three daughters: Danae, Dakotah and Daeja.

HILL CAREER

2007-11 – Associate Head Coach, Kansas State
2006-07 – Assistant Coach, Kansas State
2003-06 – Assistant Coach, Charlotte
2001-03 – Head Coach D.C. Assault (AAU)

ORLANDO “BINO” RANSON

Hometown: Baltimore, Md.

Education: Southern New Hampshire ‘99

Orlando “Bino” Ranson was hired as an assistant coach at Maryland in the summer of 2010, and the halls of Comcast Center immediately lit up with energy. He has been retained on the staff by new head coach Mark Turgeon.

“Bino is a young man I have known for a long time, and I have watched him grow as a coach,” said Turgeon. “He is a grinder when it comes to recruiting and he has many connections all over the east coast.”

Ranson has strong ties to the Baltimore-Washington area, having coached for two seasons at St. Frances Academy in Baltimore. He came to Maryland after one season as an assistant at Xavier, during which the Musketeers went 26-9 and reached the NCAA Sweet Sixteen. In his lone season on the staff of Maryland head coach Gary Williams in 2010-11, the Terrapins went 19-14.

Ranson said he’s followed the Maryland program for a long time and is familiar with its national reputation and rich history. He spent two years as an administrative assistant at Loyola University on the staff of long-time Maryland assistant Jimmy Patsos.

Prior to Xavier, Ranson was an assistant coach at James Madison for one season, helping the Dukes to a 21-15 mark, the most wins by JMU in a season since 1992-93. The Dukes advanced in the Colonial Athletic Association Tournament for the first time since 2003 and their berth in the College Insiders.com Tournament marked their first postseason appearance since 1994.

Ranson also worked for Matt Brady at Marist University for three seasons. The Red Foxes were 62-33 in those three seasons and won the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference regular season in 2007. That season, Marist won at Oklahoma State in the Postseason NIT.

Considered an outstanding recruiter, he helped bring in excellent classes at James Madison, Marist and Xavier. Ranson helped land Jay Gavin at Marist, who went on to become the MAAC Rookie of the Year.

Ranson coached at St. Frances Academy for two seasons before joining the Loyola staff. He handled St. Frances’ junior-varsity program, directing the 2003-04 team to a 24-5 record, titles in the MIAA and the Baltimore Catholic League. He also founded Team Baltimore, one of the top AAU programs in the Northeast.

Among the players Ranson worked with at the AAU level are Sean Mosley and Juan Dixon of Maryland, Ricky Harris of Massachusetts, Jermaine Dixon of Pittsburgh and Donte Greene of Syracuse.

A 1999 graduate of Southern New Hampshire with a B.S. in sports management, Ranson completed his collegiate career as one of the top players in the history of the school. He ranked seventh in career scoring (1,899 points), fifth in assists (598) and fourth in 3-point field goals (226) after lettering for four seasons. He was inducted into the school’s hall of fame in January 2007.

Ranson and his wife, Shannon, have two sons: Orlando and Bradshaw.

RANSON CAREER

2010-11 – Assistant Coach, Maryland
2009-10 – Assistant Coach, Xavier
2008-09 – Assistant Coach, James Madison
2004-05 to 2006-07 – Assistant Coach, Marist
2003-04 & 2004-05 – Administrative Assistant, Loyola, Md.
2001-02 to 2002-03 – Coach, St. Francis Academy

DUSTIN CLARK

Hometown: Waxahachie, Texas

Education: Texas A&M ‘07

Dustin Clark comes to the Maryland men’s basketball program as the director of basketball operations on the staff of head coach Mark Turgeon. In that role, Clark will be in charge of the administrative duties in the men’s basketball office, including scheduling, operations and travel.

“Dustin is one of the bright young coaches in this business,” said Turgeon. “He has tremendous passion for his job and will build great relationships with our current players. His understanding and experience of how I want the office and program to run is big in our transition.”

Clark spent five seasons with the Texas A&M basketball program. After serving as an athletics assistant for three years, he was the team administrator in the 2010-11 season. During his five seasons, the Aggies won 124 games, produced three NBA draft picks and had Turgeon earn back-to-back Big 12 Coach of the Year honors.

His duties included on-campus recruiting, coordination of recruiting correspondence, academic quality control and student-athlete affairs. Clark was the director of the Mark Turgeon Basketball Camp, as well as a coordinator for the Texas A&M Elite and Junior Elite camps. He has played a key role in helping the Aggies land multiple nationally ranked recruiting classes.

In 2008, the Aggies won the Preseason NIT and reached the second round of the NCAA Tournament where they lost in the closing seconds to top-seeded UCLA. A&M closed the next regular season on a six-game winning streak and again reached the second round of the NCAA Tournament.

In 2010, Texas A&M reached the second round of the NCAA Tournament despite playing the second-toughest schedule in the nation. A year ago, the Aggies exploded to a 16-1 start, the best at the school in 91 years and earned its sixth consecutive NCAA Tournament bid.

A native of Waxahachie, Texas, Clark received his degree from Texas A&M in 2007. Clark graduated from Avalon High School, where he was a four-year letterman in both basketball and baseball.

CLARK CAREER

2010-11 – Team Administrator, Texas A&M
2007-10 – Athletic Assistant, Texas A&M
2006-07 – Student Assistant, Texas A&M

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Turgeon Good Coach, But Must Become Good Maryland Coach

Posted on 11 May 2011 by Glenn Clark

COLLEGE PARK, Md. — New University of Maryland basketball coach Mark Turgeon said all the right things when he was introduced to the media Wednesday at Comcast Center’s Heritage Hall.

He said things like,”I can’t tell you how excited I am to be here”, “phenomenal to be standing here as the head coach of Maryland basketball” and “I’ve turned down a lot of jobs over the last four years, and it was going to take a special one for me to move my family. And Maryland’s a special place and that’s why I’m here.”

His comments even channeled the great Charlie Sheen a bit as he exclaimed at one point: “my style of play is winning.”

Following the press conference, he eased concerns that he would eventually leave Maryland to return to his alma-mater (Kansas) by telling me he “hoped” Maryland would be his last job, as long as he was successful enough to remain at the school.

All of the above were home run comments.

It isn’t surprising that Turgeon was so impressive in his first media session after replacing a legend in Gary Williams, who stepped down last week after 22 seasons with the Terrapins. Turgeon has been a head coach at the NCAA level for 13 seasons and will begin his 25th season of coaching in some capacity this fall.

He’s had plenty of opportunities to hone his skills behind a microphone in his career. In fact, he’s had that many opportunities to say the right thing when accepting a new position.

While admitting that I had never watched a Mark Turgeon press conference or interview before in my life (with no offense to Texas A&M or Wichita State, there was just never a reason to be particularly concerned), I fully expected Turgeon to deliver in his first press conference.

The fact is Turgeon has been a good coach for an extended period of time.

That doesn’t happen by accident.

If Turgeon wouldn’t have come in and impressed from day one, there’s little chance Maryland Athletic Director Kevin Anderson would have decided to make him the next coach. While smaller schools might have taken a chance on someone with lesser personality or charisma, a program like Maryland would not have needed to take such a risk.

With all of that being said-simply being a good coach will not be enough for Turgeon at this point.

He now needs to be a good coach for the University of Maryland.

It will not be fair to gauge Turgeon’s success based on what Williams accomplished over 22 seasons. Williams was unquestionably the best coach in program history, leading the program to never-before-seen heights, highlighted by the school’s only NCAA Championship in 2002.

But Turgeon knows well that Williams’ legacy will play a role in his ability to succeed in College Park. “I had to feel comfortable that he was going to accept me as the next coach” said the former TAMU coach, “and he has. And that’s real important.”

Should Turgeon be able to replicate his success with the Aggies now with the Terps, he would get off to a quick start in winning over fans in Baltimore and Washington.

Turgeon has won 20 or more games in seven of his last eight seasons and has made the NCAA Tournament in five of his last six.

While he has never advanced beyond the Sweet 16, his 2006 appearance is three seasons more recent than Williams’.

The reality is that simply being a good coach won’t quite be enough to succeed at Maryland.

While the Big-12 is a brutally difficult conference, battles with Kansas and Texas can’t quite gear a coach up for four games against Duke and North Carolina (Turgeon will have that unenviable task in his first season with Maryland).

The harsher reality is that an off-season at Maryland will be much more heavily scrutinized with the Terrapins than it ever would have been with the Aggies or Shockers.

While Texas A&M is a big school, the most significant basketball-related moments arguably happened when the guys from “Dude Perfect” chucked shots from the upper deck at Kyle Field.

A&M simply will never be a basketball school, and nothing happening on the hardwood in the Lone Star State will ever be as significant as what happens on a gridiron.

While WSU has become a significant player on the mid-major level, Wichita is not exactly a media hotbed and the school certainly doesn’t have the same number of current students or alumni, or nearly as large a current or potential fan base.

Maryland will be a much more difficult job.

The only troubling part of the Turgeon hire is his complete lack of connection to the University and nearly complete lack of connection to the Mid-Atlantic area.

To his credit, Turgeon said Wednesday he understood the importance of making a dent in the Mid-Atlantic.+

“I have really good relationships with the people in the area” said Turgeon. “I felt comfortable. If I didn’t, I wouldn’t have taken the job. I feel like I’ve been on the phone with a lot of people, not all of them yet, but relationships through Kansas.”

It makes sense that during his time as an assistant for the Jayhawks, Turgeon would have worked the area a bit. He acknowledged that he had recruited current Texas A&M guard Naji Hibbert out of DeMatha Catholic High School in Hyattsville to College Station. Hibbert is actually a Charm City native whose brother (Hakim Hibbert) played at Towson.

But Turgeon will have to do much more than that in the Maryland area to succeed at Maryland. There has been much pressure from the fanbase for Turgeon to keep at least part of Gary Williams’ staff in tact in order to recognize the significance of the area.

“I know I need to have a staff that has ties in this area up and down the East Coast” , he said Wednesday.And I have enough ties in the Midwest that I’ll still be able to do some things back in that area. So I don’t know where I am with my staff. I do know they’re going to have ties to this area.”

Retaining assistants Rob Ehsan and Bino Ranson would be a good start in reflecting the importance of the region. While Ehsan is a California native, he has made a significant impact in the Mid-Atlantic area.

New Jersey PG commit Sterling Gibbs has reportedly said keeping his commitment to the Terrapins is at least based in part in Ehsan returning to the staff. Ranson is a Baltimore native whose arrival in College Park immediately helped the Terps nail down another four star prospect in City College’s Nick Faust.

While Turgeon has put together a respectable staff in College Station, it would be a mistake to ignore the significance of the region in completing a new staff in College Park.

My best guess is that Mark Turgeon will find success as the head basketball coach at the University of Maryland. His track record indicates that he won’t have a problem winning almost immediately.

But if it happens, it will happen because Turgeon understands that there is a difference between being a good head coach and a great Maryland coach.

Hopefully Wednesday was the first step down that road.

-G

NOTES: Turgeon’s press conference is available now in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net……Anderson joined Glenn Clark and Thyrl Nelson on “The Mobtown Sports Beat” Tuesday on AM1570 WNST to discuss the hire, that chat is available in the Audio Vault as well……Ehsan, Ranson and Williams’ other assistant Keith Booth were all in attendance for Wednesday’s press conference. Also in attendance were football coach Randy Edsall, soccer coach Sasho Cirovski, women’s basketball coach Brenda Frese, University President Wallace Loh and former Terps F Tahj Holden

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