Thursday, July 03, 2014

Thursday--July 3rd, 2014

From the UMass website: UMass adds four players to the 2014 squad.

Dan Malone has a story on the additions.

Drew Harris, wearing #38 (ex-Jessie Monteiro, now wearing #27) could be a game-changer for UMass fans. He's a big back (6-1 220) in the mold of Marcel Shipp and Steve Baylark. Harris certainly has the credentials to vault the Minuteman running game into one of the top units in the MAC. As I said before, if you can run the ball, generally you've got a good looking QB and offense. UMass was 10th in the MAC in rushing offense in 2013 and 104th nationally out of 125 FBS teams.

Harris is probably the highest rated recruit in UMass history.

The addition of Liam Porter, Ryan Johnson and Anthony Fernandez should help the offensive line.

I, for one, am looking forward to seeing the new UMass offense this fall.

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University of Minnesota-Morris image
Brian McDonald is another nice move by Whipple. I was on the sidelines for the Spring Game and RSFR Logan Laurent's punts needed some work.

McDonald will wear #96 (not assigned in 2013)

Remember, during the first Whipple Era the Minutemen had some of their best ever punters. David Sanger was first-team All-CAA in 2001 and 2002. Andy Maclay (scroll down) was All-CAA in 1998 and Christian Koegel was 7th in UMass history in total punting yards as a freshman in 2003. Maclay, Sanger and Koegel hold 7 of the top-ten punting yards seasonal records in UMass history. They also hold 8 of the top-10 yards/punt records.

YouTube has McDonald's video highlights.

McDonald adds another potential upgrade to the 2014 team.

Dan Malone looks at Logan Laurent vs Brain McDonald.

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Lucas Kolter adds a 6-3 310 pound body to the smallish UMass defensive line. When the Soviet Union broke up there was a sigh of relief in the Olympics community; now they only had to face one German team. If you want to expand your recruiting pool outside of the USA, Germany could be one place to look at. Maybe more so than Canada.

Kolter will wear #93 (not assigned in 2013)

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247 Sports image
Austin Whipple adds some depth to the already crowded Minuteman QB position. Whipple, the pater, will still play Blake Fronapfel as the #1 QB.

Whipple will wear #3 (along with Kessan Messiah)

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Dan also has some football notes. Ed Saint-Vil has graduated and will not play in 2014.

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Sunbelt Conference school UL is not sold on a conference championship game. The story mentions UMass.

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SB Nation says conference realignment seems to be over.

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ESPN ranks the Big Ten's OOC opponents including Penn State-UMass.

Rant Sports ranks the Nittany Lions as #53 going into the 2014 season.

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