Friday, March 24, 2017

Friday--March 24th, 2017

Lost in yesterday's soap opera was UMass' Pro Day.

WWLP has a report on the Pro Day and a list of players who participated.

Adam Aucoin from the UMass Daily Collegian has a story about the 2017 Pro Day.

The UMass Football Twitter feed has some images from Pro Day.

This article has notes about Pro Day at BC and UConn.

As a WAG, I would speculate Khary Bailey-Smith would have the best chance of landing a free agent contract. Back in 2015 he was third-team All-MAC as a kick returner. He could be an asset on special teams.

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University of Hawaii concluded their Spring practice schedule with a controlled scrimmage. UMass and the Rainbow Warriors open the 2017 college football season on August 26th at McGuirk.

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SOME PEOPLE NEVER GIVE UP

This will make you feel better (click and Blogger displays a larger image) :

US DOD image
Retired Army Col. Ben Skardon, 99, a survivor of the Bataan Death March, walks in the annual Bataan Memorial Death March with two Army medics at White Sands Missile Range, N.M., March 19, 2017. Army Reserve photo by Staff Sgt. Ken Scar

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Recruiting 2018--Jamari Currence II

Scout.com image
Several recruiting services indicate UMass has offered to Jamari Currence, a 5-11 180 pound DB from Rock Hill, S.C. I've blogged about Currence before.

247 Sports page here.

This article from Scout.com dated 03/21/2017 has a report on the 2nd Carolina Exposure Showcase mentioning Currence.

Hudl.com has video.

UMass is the first offer for Currence. He's also hearing from Iowa State, Appalachian State and Georgia State

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Thursday--March 23rd, 2017

Well, despite the fact it was 11 degrees here in Jaffrey, Spring practice has started. That's a morale booster right there.

Dan Malone says new defensive coordinator Ed Pinkham gets to work on the 2017 UMass defense.

Quote from the article:

"The thing that excites me as a coach is the challenge of building a program," he (Pinkham) said. "We were in a situation (at Western Michigan) where we took a team the first year, didn't have much and we went 1-11. You say each year we're going to get better and better and better. Through recruiting and trying to keep it simple, we were fortunate enough to have some success."

One of the main reasons for the rise of Western Michigan was recruiting. The Broncos led the MAC in recruiting ratings four straight years. As well as X's and O's, I hope Pinkham can turn UMass' defensive recruiting up a notch or two.

Dan also has general report on the opening of Spring practice. He notes Pinkham likes to play a four down linemen defense.

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Sacred Heart Athletic Dept image
New UMass defensive line coach Dave Wissman has deep Western Massachusetts roots.

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Coastal Carolina's coach Joe Moglia talks about Spring practice. UMass opens their 2017 road game season at the Chants on September 2nd.

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Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Wednesday--March 22nd, 2017

Mark chguarelli of MassLive reports UMass TE Adam Breneman will receive the Francis X. Keating Award at the Western Massachusetts football banquet.

Breneman should rack up a ton of stats in 2017 catching passes from Andrew Ford. Whipple's pro-set offense works best with an effective TE and a power running game. Hopefully, Breneman will a great year and position himself well for the NFL draft. Along with good numbers, leading the Minutemen out of the wilderness with some wins would also be nice.

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Matty Vautour, the only beat reporter still covering UMass, reports on the opening of Spring practice for the Minutemen. Matty says Ross Comis is still recovering from a torn ACL, but is running. It usually takes a year to fully return from an ACL injury. It will probably be the middle of the 2017 season before he is 100%.

Matty also reports Matt Dawson has been named the defensive coordinator at Norfolk state.

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Rich Thompson of the Boston Herald reports new UMass defensive coordinator Ed Pinkham is starting to rebuild the Minutmen defense.

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This article by MassLive reporter Jordan Grice mentions UMass' Pro Day will be this Thursday.

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Coastal Carolina starts a stadium expansion. UMass will be the first FBS opponent to visit Brooks Stadium.

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The Portland News Herald reports on UMaine's criteria for scheduling FBS games. The Black Bears will play UMass and Central Florida in 2017.

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OT, but I think A.D. Ryan Bamford's decison to hire Pat Kelsey as HC of UMass hoops is a good one. I've been following UMass basketball as long as I have for football. The Minutemen program needs a high-energy guy. I accept we are a mid-major in sports, I will not concede we're doomed to be a low mid-major. With the budget and facilities UMass has, the Minutemen should be contenders for A10 crown, if not every year, then at least often.

So far, I like the hires Bamford has done as A.D.

Hope Kelsey brings five good years to UMass basketball. I'll be happy for him when he moves to a big-bucks ACC job. A resurgence in UMass basketball would also help in UMass finding an all-sports conference.

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Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Recruiting 2018--Various updates

Jehlani Galloway, a 6-1 175 pound WR from Rhode Island has verbaled with Boston College. Galloway had a UMass offer. I blogged about him here.

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Jay Symonds, a 6-4 238 pound TE/Fullback from Cambridge, MA has verbaled to  Pitt.  I blogged about his offer from UMass back on March 1st.

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Back on March 6th, I blogged about Graham Roberts a 6-0 220 pound RB from Wilmington, DE.

Roberts will be attending Nebraska's Spring game on April 15th.

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Kyaire Bynum, a 6-1 185 pound WR/DB who had an offer from UMass back in 2014, ended up in JUCO football. He'll now be attending DII Johnson C. Smith.

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Tuesday--March 21st, 2017


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USA Today has ten Group-of-Five teams who will rebound in 2017. Georgia Southern, who will play at UMass on October 21st, is one of them.

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Temple, who UMass plays at Lincoln Financial Field on September 16th, has a new coach; they're also looking for a new QB.

FanSided.com has three Owls players set to have a big impact in 2017.

Temple opens with Notre Dame and then plays Villanova in Philly. The Minutemen will be the third game for the Owls.

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Meanwhile, Coastal Carolina seeks to replace eight starters on offense and five starters on defense as they work through Spring practice.

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Monday, March 20, 2017

Recruiting 2017--Matt Rosso

Hudl.com image
Matt Rosso, a 6-6 255 pound DL from Pennsbury HS in PA has Tweeted he's received an offer from UMass.

Hudl.com has video.

UMass is Rosso's first offer.

Monday--March 20th, 2017

Happy Vernal Equinox day!  We're about halfway to Fall football :)

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Appalachian State has gone 20-2 against Group-of-Five football teams since moving to FBS. This long SB nation look at the Mountaineers gives Appalachian State a 74% chance of defeating the Minutemen when they meet at McGuirk on October 28th.

The Mountaineers have announced a $60 million sports renovation plan that includes one of the top video boards in Group-of-Five football.

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CBS Sports has a post on "Five Cinderella Teams" for 2017. UMass has the good luck to play three of the five...

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The BYU Spring game will be available on BYU TV on March 25th. BYU TV is here.

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Friday, March 17, 2017

Recruiting 2018--Caleb Tannor

Georgia Recruiting image
Several recruiting services show UMass has offered to Caleb Tannor, a 6-3 225 pound strong-side DE from Lithonia, GA

247Sports page here.

Hudl.com has video.

Partial quote from a Scout.com article dated 02/02/17 by Dave Lomonico:

And I’d love to get offers from anybody in the ACC or SEC. Those are the schools I’ve grown up around and have been watching, so I’d love to have offers from some of them,” Tannor said.

The Miller Grove product is coming off a season where he recorded 60 tackles, seven sacks, two safeties, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery."

Recruit Georgia.com says Tannor's recruiting is taking off.

Tannor has 18 offers including Maryland, Missouri, Rutgers and Tennessee from Power Five schools. UMass and Rutgers are the only offers from the Northeast.

Friday--March 17th, 2017

Underdog Dynasty looks at UMass' 2017 schedule.

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In addition, Underdog Dynasty says the Temple Owls don't have a rivalry game. Minuteman fans would dearly like to supply one. The last UMass-Temple game was excellent (not counting the last two minutes).

Temple does have a rivalry with Rutgers over recruiting New Jersey players.

The Minutemen play at Lincoln Financial Field on September 16th.

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Meanwhile, the USF Bulls, who went 11-2 in 2016, start Spring Practice. USF could be the best team UMass plays in 2017; better than the two SEC teams. The Minutemen should get some good recruiting exposure in talent-rich Florida from the game. UMass plays at Raymond James Stadium on October 14th.

The Bulls play a number of teams from the Northeast in 2017: Stony Brook, UConn, Temple and UMass.

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The NY Jets could be interested in Victor Cruz.

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