Monday, July 31, 2006

A10 Football Media Day Wednesday Aug 2nd

Atlantic 10 football will have its last Media Day on Wednesday August 2nd. It will be broadcast live over the A10 site and (I assume) over WRHU . It will run from 10:00 am to 12:30 pm.

No word yet on when UMass' segment will air. Coach Brown should be there as well at least one UMass player.

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Opening opponent Colgate's media guide out

Only 35 days until UMass opens at home against Colgate.

The Raiders have their 2006 Media Guide available . It's nicely broken down in segments for easy download.

NOTE: The pdf download crashes my version of FireFox (my preferred browser.) It seems to work OK with Internet Explorer.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Field Turf installation starts

The UMass Athletic Dept site has a story and an image gallery on the start of field turf installation.

I'll make a point of visiting McGuirk next week and will take some for images for your viewing pleasure.

15 days until UMass opens fall camp!

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

UMass Drumline

Joining the UMass Football Blog's "UMass Football Links" section is the UMass Drumline . They have an extensive website with lots of video, image galleries and audio links here .

This blog has talked before about the UMass Marching Band before . The Drumline has a thing of its own.

Turn up the volume on your computer speakers all the way and click here !

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

College Football Data Warehouse

Check out College Football Data Warehouse. It has tons of statistics on all levels of football.

The I-AA page is here. UMass' page is here.

Warning! This site is a real work killer. Remember my post on new UMass Coach Bob Shoop ? We talked about Columbia's problems? Well, according to College Data Warehouse, if Columbia outscored its 2006 opponents 5,599-0, they would be even in points scored-points scored against!

Monday, July 24, 2006

Recruiting 2007 -- Five players shows UMass recruiting five players for 2007. They are:
  1. Sam Griffin -- a 6-4 217 pd DE from Don Bosco Prep ( reports UMass has offered)
  2. Quendel Ellison -- a 5-10 200 pd RB from Auburn NY
  3. Ryan Bennett -- a 6-5 275 pd OL/TE from Somerville. NJ ( reports UMass has offered)
  4. Alondre Rush -- 6-0 180 pd CB from Middletown, CT
  5. Donny Lemeiux -- 5-11 185 pd K from Gardner, MA
Letter-of-intent day is Feb. 7, 2007!

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Mark November 11th on your calendar

Mark November 11th on your calendar.

From the UMass OOC Basketball schedule:

" UMass opens its 2006-07 season with a visit from regional rival Dartmouth on Saturday, Nov. 11 at the Mullins Center. That game will tip-off at 5 p.m. following UMass' football game against Maine held at McGuirk Stadium"

Friday, July 21, 2006

On Monday July 24th the UMass Friends of Football will be having their annual golf outing. The Friends were established by Coach Whipple to support UMass Football. They are composed of former players, coaches and UMass fans.

I believe the Friends were established during the last year of Whipple's era. That would make them four or five years old. In that time they have:
The UMass Football Blog has been a member of Friends of Football from day one. We urge all UMass fans to join. If you are a fan, there is no better way to help the team succeed. Join today!

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Don Hansen picks UMass Football #13 Pre-season

Don Hansen's National Weekly Football Gazette has picked UMass #13 pre-season. Don Hansen has been covering I-AA, Div II and Div III football since 1987. Kudos to Don for his long-term coverage!

At one time, Don was about the only pundit for sub-I-A football. The rise of the web has changed the rules.

There are now DII Football Sites and DIII football sites and of course, a number of I-AA sites (check the side bar of this blog for some of them).

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Field Turf installation 07/18/06

The papers stated that installation of the field turf surface was going to start this week. I was in Amherst and stopped by to see what was happening.

No big trucks with rolls of field turf were evident, but another layer had been added to the under surface----this time TRG. The same crushed rock and clay used on driveways. The field now looks very smooth.

I assume you're really getting tired of gravel pictures by now, so I only took three images. Right click on any image for a larger view.

JMU has almost finished its field turf installation. An image and story of how their field looks is here.

Ours will be even better!

Field Turf installation 07/18/06

Tamping a football-sized area with that must have taken some time

View from the South Endzone

Monday, July 17, 2006

Alex Miller picked to's Pre-Season All American Team

UMass Senior Center Alex Miller has been picked to's Preseason All America Team .

Note that UMass' punter Christian Koegel was not picked 1st, 2nd or 3rd team. I queried the publisher, but did not get any satisfaction.

Saturday, July 15, 2006

UMass Legends Steve Schubert and Ron Villone elected to UMass Hall-of-Fame

UMass has announced the 2006 class for the UMass Hall of Fame . Included in the inductees will be former UMass Football players Steve Schubert and Ron Villone.

I've already blogged about Ron Villone and his football career at UMass. That UMass Football Blog entry is here .

Steve Schubert was of the all-time best wide receivers at UMass. Some of his accomplishments:
  • Lettered in 1970,1971 and 1972
  • All-American 1st Team in 1972
  • All Yankee Conference 1st team 1972
  • Still 3rd all-time at UMass in Highest Ave/catch (20.0) and Career Ave/catch (17.7)
  • Tied for 5th Single Season most TD's
  • 7th in All-Time career receiving yards 1,435
  • 2nd All-Time in highest ave per punt return (16.8) and career ave per punt return (12.2)
Schubert played five years in the pros. He played for the Patriots in 1974 and the Chicago Bears 1975-1979.

The image above is a scan from the 2004 UMass Press Guide.

Congratulations Steve and Ron!

Friday, July 14, 2006

UMass Season Tickets are up

UMass is accepting orders for UMass Season Tickets. On-line access is here . The UMass Football Blog will be shortly sending in for its 30th consecutive year with season tickets.

The UMass Football Blog urges all UMass fans to make the commitment to buy season tickets. The number of season ticket holders is one of the major indicators that the school administration uses to gauge interest in the program.

At $60/season ticket UMass prices are a bargain! You get great football, the incomparable UMass Marching Band , UMass Cheering and a wonderful family atmosphere.

In a thread on the AGS Message Board fans of various teams reported the cost of their season tickets*.
  • Montana-$450/season ticket (individual tickets run $30 to $72/game plus a mandatory athletic dept contribution)
  • GSU $80/season ticket plus a mandatory athletic dept contribution between $120 to $1,200/yr
  • Coastal Carolina $220/season ticket plus mandatory $135/yr contribution
  • UNH $85/season ticket
  • Delaware $22/game
*Note I did not cross check the prices with the teams website. Also many teams have multiple ticket packages. I tried to pick ticket options similar to what UMass offers, but take the figures above with some caution. However, it does illustrate that UMass football is a great buy!

Please help the team by purchasing your season tickets soon!

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Serge Tikum Joins the UMass Coaching Staff

Matty Vautour reports (registration required) that former UMass Captain and middle linebacker Serge Tikum has joined the Minutemen as an assistant linebacker coach.

Tikum (#51 in the attached image) was elected captain in both his junior and senior years. He was an inspirational leader during his career with the Minutemen. It had been a long time since UMass had an non-senior captain.

Congratulations Serge!

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

UMass Football 12th in AGS consolidated Poll

AGS keeps a consolidated poll of all the I-AA pre-season rankings here . While polls are just polls and the great strength of I-AA is that our championships are won on the field, it still makes interesting reading.

Currently, the consolidated poll reflects the prognostications of Lindy's, Street & Smith, The Sports Network and AGS' own poll of the I-AA community.

Monday, July 10, 2006

07/07/06 Field Turf installation images

I was at McGurik on 07/07/06. The following images are of the undersurface, which seems to be complete.

Right click on the images for a larger view. If your cursor has a "+" sign, you can click again for yet a larger view.

The UMass Athletic Dept has some construction images here .

07/07/06 View from the UMass Team Gate

07/07/06 All the drainage pipes have beencovered

07/07/06 View from the South End Zone

07/07/06 Undersurface is one-inch rolled stone

07/07/06 Turf will extend to endzone walls

07/07/06 View from the North End Zone

07/07/06 View from the Concourse

07/07/06 View from the Stands

Saturday, July 08, 2006

UMass Ranked #8 Pre-Season by Sporting News

Matt Dougherty of Sporting News has completed a journalistic tour-de-force by ranking all 122 teams in Division I-AA. Read it here .

There are many ways to parse his list. Here's one:

The UMass schedule by Dougherty rank.
  • #25 Colgate
  • Navy is I-A
  • #59 Villanova
  • #8 (mid-majors) Stony Brook
  • 28 William & Mary
  • #43 Towson
  • #61 Rhode Island
  • #67 Northeastern
  • #4 New Hampshire
  • # 39 Maine
  • #37 Hofstra
Interesting. I think he underrates the best Patriot League team (Colgate) and the duo of Maine and Hofstra would fare well against many of the teams ranked ahead of them.

Friday, July 07, 2006

Odds and ends Friday

The incomparable Matty Vautour of the Hampshire Gazette has an article expanding on some of the topics covered this week on the UMass Fanzone Blog. The football news is in the middle of the article. For a review of my coverage, click on the July entries in the "past blogs by month" in the sidebar (I haven't yet found a way to point Blogger to a post in the active page).

First and foremost, Matty reports that Coach Morris is recovering and has returned to work.

Second, Matty covers the on-going installation of the new field turf at McGuirk. The UMass website has updated construction images here .

Also, The Sports Network has picked it's Pre-Season All America Team. UMass has an article here . The original Sports Network article is here .

Alex Miller and Christian Koegel were picked as second team All Americans. Miller has started every game he has played in. He calls the blocking schemes for the offensive line on every play. Congratulations Alex!

We have already disagreed about Christian Koegel being ranked second in the nation (click on the July Blogs for my 06/27/06 article). If there is a better punter in I-AA, I have yet to see him.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

New England College Football

Did you know there are 50 College Football teams in New England?

This page has links to the football websites of all of them.

The guy running the page also has a college football blog/news letter that seems fairly interesting (when he is publishing).

There are only about a half-a-dozen I-AA team blogs in existence and you are reading the arguably the most active of them...

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Recruiting 2007 K David Teggart

The Boston Globe reports that UMass as well as a number of A10 schools and some I-A's are recruiting David Teggart of Algonquin High in Framingham, MA.

Teggart is a strong legged kicker. His website is here .

Hope you choose UMass Dave!

Monday, July 03, 2006

Bob Shoop joins the 2006 UMass Coaching Staff

Joining the UMass Coaching staff for 2006 is Bob Shoop .

Shoop brings extensive I-A and I-AA experience to the UMass football program.

This is a nice pickup for the UMass staff. Shoop has excelled in all his positions except for Columbia. Note that Columbia has a collective record of 67-242-6 since 1978. No one has won at Columbia since the Lions joined I-AA. Many people would conclude that the problems at Columbia are institutional not coaching.

Welcome to UMass Coach Shoop! The UMass Football Blog believes the UMass secondary is in good hands.

UPDATE: 07/04/06

One of the UMass Football Blog's friends has sent an e-mail pointing out that Coach Shoop has excellent recruiting connections in talent-rich South Florida. Shoop was involved in the I-A recruiting press for Christian Koegal .

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Coach Morris ill?

While surfing the web for UMass Foootball news I ran into this quote on the Thursday edition on Football Scoop :

Kevin Morris the OC at UMass is in a hospital in NJ after sufferring a mild stroke while working the Rutgers University Football Camp on Tuesday.

Could not find any other information about this.

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Blog, Blog #2

A couple of notes to regular readers: As you know Blogger is a free service of Google. Thanks Google!

However, there are hundreds of thousands of blogs and Google does not make any money unless the blogger opts for advertising on his/her blog. I will not do so. The UMass football blog is a labor of love, not for $$$.

However, that means Google does not have a large staff helping when there are problems. Recently a number of blogs have been highjacked. I've noticed signs lately that the UMass Football Blog has been visited by some sort of Web bot.

So my point is if you should visit and find the blog has been morphed into "Naughty Dutch Schoolgirls", be patient. It's been taking about a week to get Google to repair highjacked blogs. I'll be working to return as soon as possible if something happens.

The other thing is that I've finally edited the script that give the "Countdown to Colgate" counter to reflect the correct date of the game. Remember the script checks the system date on your computer. If you never set your system clock or are on some other time (Zulu time for military), then the countdown will off. I like Atom Time Pro as a time setting utility.