Thursday, August 30, 2012

Game Day ---UConn

Matty V looks back at the start of an old era and his first story as the UMass beat reporter.


I vividly remember that UMass-Delaware game. WHMP's 2.5 watt nighttime signal did not reach beyond Whately, so I drove down the the VA hospital in Northampton and parked in one of their lots. I bought a Coke from one of the vending machines in the deserted lower floor of the main building , then went back to my truck , opened all the windows to let the evening air in, tilted the seat back and listened to Todd Bankhead, Adrian Zullo, Kerry Taylor and Marcel Shipp tear up and down the field at Delaware.

The moment was a sea change. The Hens had always dominated UMass and it was no secret why. Delaware was fully funded with 63 scholarships. Jimmie Reid and Bob Pickett got low 50's ---- and sometimes less. The Hens regularly took 1-A transfers, we did not. Delaware drew 20,000+ and the school administration was serious about winning. At UMass, winning had been a low priority.

Tonight, I'm driving down to East Hartford. While Whipple didn't win at Delaware and we probably are outgunned against the Huskies, I hope the omens are again favourable...

Matty has the results for the initial game of UMass coaches going back to Jimmie Reid.

He also has UMass and UConn are ready for the kickoff of their respective seasons.

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I'm part of the Media Vs Bloggers weekly football picking contest at the Gazette.

The other half of the question-and-answer session I had with the UConn Blog is up on The UConn Blog's site.

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The game is on ESPN3. However UMass fans in Connecticut and New York City are blacked out. 

The game will also be on SNY.
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The Hartford Courant has UMass ready for their 1-A adventure.

MassLive says the Minutemen are not alone with starting a new quarterback.

The Boston Herald says UMass renews an old rivalry.

The Boston Globe says UMass and UConn start up again.

The Hartford Courant states the Huskies want a strong start against UMass.

The Courant also has five things about tonight UMass-UConn game.

Harry Plumer of MassLive runs UMass-UConn on NCAA13 and gets a 38-7 Husky victory.

The UConn student newspaper says UConn is ready to rumble.

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The Boston Globe previews the MAC conference.

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Keepers Collge Football Ratings has UConn by 31.5

Vandalay Sports has the Huskies by 37-16.

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5 comments:

Todd Bankhead said...

That's awesome, that game was so much fun. You're right about the change that occurred that night, I'm not sure anybody (players and coach's included) expected us to be competitive in that game. It's cool to know that someone as loyal as you was committed enough to make the effort to listen to the game. I find myself doing the same types of things (although technology has made it a little easier) to watch and listen to UMass Bball and football games. Have fun tonight, wish I could be there, will have to settle for TV. Thanks for all you do, I read the blog everyday.

UMass74 said...

I remember punching the WMUA button during a commercial break on WHMP and the student announcers were saying

"Dude, this is like the best UMass game I've ever seen!"

UMass74 said...

BTW, that game was the start of Todd throwing for 7,018 yards and 51 TD's in two years!

prof. said...

One of the best QBs in UMass history!

TopUMassFan said...

That season was magical. I remember driving to the North Shore Mall parking lot with a pizza and soda to listen to the Northwestern St. game. The signal was so weak I may have heard every 3rd or 4th word. I remember a big gain by Matt Jordan and a failed late field goal by Northwestern St.. The next week ESPN fumbled the broadcast by staying with a basketball game. When they switched over to Chattanooga, the rout was on!

Todd Bankhead was outstanding and would have owned all the records if he had played all four years in a Minuteman uniform. As good as Liam was, Todd is the only QB to deliver a National Championship. So nice to know he stays "connected" to the program.