Sunday, September 24, 2017

UMass Football News--September 24th, 2017

Well, another SEC foe, another close game for the Minutemen. Despite all the doom and gloom and predictions of a blowout, UMass  went toe-to-toe with the vaunted Volunteers and were exactly four points worse. I think we would have beat 'em if Ford had not been hurt.

Some thoughts:

1. Ed Pinkham for HC? The UMass defense had 12 TFL against an SEC team known for their running attack. That's 23 TFL for the defense in the last two games. The  Minutemen held Tennessee to 135 total yards rushing and Vols star RB Kelley to 101. And 27 of those yards came on one run. The Tennessee passing game was generally ineffective totaling 187 yards and again 66 of those came on one play. Four-star QB Jarrett Guarantano was in for a couple of series and the Minutemen held him to 2-5 -3 yards. The defense did everything we could ask.

2. The offense did not play bad. The offensive line struggled with the pass rush, but the run blocking improved. UMass actually out rushed the Vols 142 to 135 net yards. Even better, Marquis Young averaged 5.4 yards/carry and Bilal Ally averaged 4.9. On the negative side Ross Comis continued to struggle to move the offense. There were some mistakes, but again this was against an SEC team on their home field.

3. If there are 130 teams in FBS, we are #131 in special teams. We kicked the opening kickoff out of bounds. Mike Schreiner missed an extra point. Our senior kicker had a 26 yard punt and in the fourth quarter with six minutes to play, punted into the end zone from the Tennessee 44 yard line. An inside the ten punt would have really upped the pressure on the Vols offense. We just get zero positive plays from the kicking game.

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UMass write-up here.

Tennessee write-up here.

MassLive says UMass fell in a close contest.

Matty Vautour says UMass couldn't complete the comeback.

Matty report the Minutemen came out of the game with some injury concerns.

Mostly sour grapes from the Tennessee side.

SEC country has grades for the Vols.

The Times-Free press says Tennessee managed to hold off UMass. The same newspaper says Elliot Berry knocking Andrew Ford out of the game was key play of the contest.

Vols RB John Kelley said the UMass defense was "a little tougher than expected".

The News-Sentinel said bright spots were hard to find for the Vols.

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Hawaii lost to Wyoming in overtime.

Coastal Carolina was crushed by FCS Western Illinois.  I still can't believe we lost to those guys.

Old Dominion was crushed by Virginia Tech 0-38.

Ohio won in double overtime against Eastern Michigan.

USF had routed Temple 43-7 on Friday.

Georgia Southern was run over by Indiana 17-52.

Appalachian State lost to Wake Forest by 1.

Mississippi State was dominated by a strong Georgia defense 3-31.

Maine lost to #1 ranked James Madison 10-28.

FIU beat Rice in a defensive struggle.

BYU had a bye.

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Saturday, September 23, 2017

Game Day--- Tennessee


Well UMass will be a big underdog in Knoxville today. These games pay the bills; the allow us to have team we all obsess over. Still, UMass can work on getting better. I think we'll score some points on the Vols. Let's run better, run better routes, block better. If we can make plays against Tennessee with its roster of four and five star recruits, then we can do the same against Group-of-Five teams.

Let's play like we belong. Go UMass!

UMass changes it's away uniform for the Tennessee game.
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The UMass-Tennessee game is listed for DISH channel 408 (SEC Network) here in New Hampshire.

Matty Vautour reports UMass' young receivers are eager to fill the hole if Adam Breneman can't play today.

The Knoxville News looks at who has the edge in each position in today's UMass-Tennessee game.

The Times-Free Press says UMass should be a good recovery for the Vols. They also report Tennessee hope to work out corrections against the Minutemen.

Go Vols 247 has bold predictions for Vols-Minutemen game. They also pick the score for today's game.

The Rocky Top insider studies UMass' game film.

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Friday, September 22, 2017

UMass Football News--September 22nd, 2017


A quick look at Tennessee:

The Vols return five starters on offense and six on defense from a team that finished 9-4 (4-4 in the SEC) in 2016. Their season concluded with a win over Nebraska in the Music City Bowl. The only statistical number to jump out is they finished #104 in rushing defense.

Probably the most interesting fact about Tennessee is their mind-boggling recruiting. The Vols 2018 recruiting class is currently ranked 6th nationally and #1 in the SEC. Tennessee's back-up QB Jarrett Guarantano is a four-star recruit from New Jersey. The vols have tons of talent in every position on their roster.

All that talent has caused some unrest in Knoxville because the last time the Vols won the National Championship was 1998, the same year UMass won the FCS Championship. So far this year the Vols edged by Georgia Tech, blew out Indiana State 42-7 and lost a close game to Florida.

RB John Kelly leads the Vols rushing 53-352 6.2 AVE 5 TD's. Quinton Dormady is Tennessee's #! QB. He's gone 54-94 674 5 TD's 4 INT's 126.72 EFF.

UMass has been unable to run the ball against much lesser teams this year. Indiana State did manage 128 yards against the Vols defense. The Minutemen defense has been scrappy the last two games. They need to keep that up. Keep playing and work on improving. The UMass offense will have to pass the ball, since we can't run. I think UMass will score some points. If we turn the ball over, this could be a blowout. The Minutemen are 5-0 ATS against SEC teams over the last five games.

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Mark Chiarelli of MassLive reports UMass is prepping for Tennessee.

Matty Vautour has a podcast and a story about UMass' trip to Knoxville.

Mike Traini of "Fight Massachusetts" previews the Minutemen-Volunteers game.

Clarksville Online says Tennessee host UMass Saturday.

The Berkshire Eagle reports UMass is searching for a win.

Tennessee HC Butch Jones says UMass is better than their record.

The Knoxville News reports UMass' passing game is a threat.

The Vols defense has been hit with some significant injuries.

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I watched Temple play UMass' once-and-future opponent USF last night. The Owls lost 7-42. Temple managed just 85 yards of offense and totaled -4 yards rushing.

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Thursday, September 21, 2017

UMass Football News--September 21st, 2017

Tennessee has their game notes for UMass up.

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The UMass Daily Collegian has UMass travels to Tennessee for their first Power Five opponent of 2017.

All For Tennessee has five Minutemen to watch out for.

The Tennessean says the Vols have too many star recruits who are not reaching their potential.

SEC Country has what Tennessee learned about itself in a tough loss to Florida.

Jarrett Guarantano is the Vols backup QB; Tennessee's HC expects him to get some playing time against UMass.

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UConn's Randy Edsall preaches patience.

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UMass is not the biggest underdog in New England this week. Boston College is a 34.5 point dog to Clemson.

BC, UConn and UMass are a combined 2-7 so far in 2017. That includes UConn's win over FCS Holy Cross.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

UMass Football News--September 20th, 2017

UMass has their game notes for Tennessee up.

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Matty Vautour says UMass QB Andrew Ford keeps getting up.

I wonder what Ford could do if:

  1. He had a running game
  2. No drops (he would have had about 425 yards and 4 TD's against Temple with a couple of more catches)
  3. An offensive line with a couple of All-Independent players.
Side note. Another UMass fan and I were talking before the Old Dominion game about the offensive line. We were in the MAC for four years. Anyone remember if we ever had a first or second team All-MAC offensive lineman?

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Speaking of kicking, the National Junior College Athletic Association has a list of the top JUCO kickers

There's also a lot of kicking talent in the California Community College leagues.

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Ryan Ames of the UMass Daily Collegian reports Sadiq Palmer and Jesse Britt are starting to emerge as playmakers for the Minutemen.

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All for Tennesse has five Vols to watch vs UMass.

The Knoxville News-Sentinel says Tennessee has resolve and resilience. 




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WSB-TV looks at Georgia's 2018 schedule which includes UMass.

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Tuesday, September 19, 2017

UMass Football News--September 19th, 2017

Matty Vautour reports college football at Fenway Park could become a regular thing.

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Keepers College Football ratings has Tennessee by 24.78 over UMass. Keep in mind the Minutemen have gone 5-0 ATS for SEC teams.

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Chowder and Champions thinks UMass won't win a game this season.

I don't know about that, but it looks like we could go without a field goal this season. BTW, Massachusetts has a nationally ranked kicker playing at Groton High.

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The Columbus Daily Herald says the Vols seek to keep their heads up after a close loss to Florida.

The Chattanogata Free Press reports Tennessee HC Butch Jones needs a big win in a hurry.

The Vols are trying to move past the Florida defeat.

Tennessee lost their 2016 leading tackler in the Florida game for the rest of the season.

The Knoxville News Sentinel has video and audio options for the Vols-Minutemen game.

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Monday, September 18, 2017

UMass Football News--September 18th, 2017

UMass opens as a 26.5 underdog to the Volunteers.

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Temple News has more on Owls DT Quincy Roche's huge day against the Minutemen.

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Go Vols notes Tennessee opens as a nearly four-touchdown favorite over UMass.

Sports Chat Place previews the Minutemen-Volunteers game.

The Knoxville News says Tennessee has plenty to correct after the loss to Florida.

Tennessee dropped out of both the Coaches and AP Top-25 poll after their loss to the Gators.

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If you missed it Notre Dame rushed for 515 yards against Boston College Saturday. Irish QB Brandon Wimbush's 10.1 yards/carry broke a Notre Dame record that had stood since 1942.

Virginia QB Kurt Benkert threw for a record 455 yards in dismantling UConn.

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Sunday, September 17, 2017

UMass Football Recruiting 2018--Billy Ferrell

SicEm365 image
Billy Ferrell, a 6-3 330 pound DT from Fordyce, AK has Tweeted he's received an offer from UMass.

247Sports three-star player.

Rivals three-star player.

Hudl.com has video.

Besides UMass, Ferrell has FBS offers from Memphis, Arkansas State and Colorado state.

UMass Football News--September 17th, 2017


I don't know if you caught A.D. Ryan Bamford's interview at halftime of the Temple game or not. He had a couple of interesting statements.

  • Bamford said UMass was working on a indoor practice facility. He said the time frame was "a couple of years".
  • Bamford stated that UMass was solvent as an Independent and scheduling was was complete for 2018 and almost complete for 2019. The Minutemen have games set as far out as 2023.
  • The interview was conducted just after we had given up 14 points in about two and a half minutes at the end of the first half. Referring to success and possible conference affiliation he said UMass needed to win games and "we haven't learned how to do that yet".
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Mike Traini of "Fight Massachusetts" recaps the Minutemen's loss to Temple. He also attempts to figure out how many points UMass has lost because of the kicking game over the last four years.

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In yesterday's action:

Hawaii had a bye.

Coastal Carolina lost to UAB. Most football preview magazines had startup UAB last in Conference USA.




Georgia Southern had a bye.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

UMass Football News--September 16th, 2017

Well mistakes and abysmal kicking doomed a tenacious UMass effort at Temple. The Minutemen missed three field goals at the Owls 22, 6 and 14 yard lines. We left 9 points on field in an 8 point loss. Ford fumbled deep in UMass territory to give Temple a short field at the end of the first half. We also dropped two possible TD passes (Isabella and Herring).

On the positive side, the Minutemen defense continued their upward momentum. The UMass defense repeatedly stuffed the Temple offense. The Minutemen defenders had 11 TFL (!) and two sacks. Temple RB Ryquell Armstead had a 56 yard run on the third play of the game. The other 33 Temple rushes gained 63 yards (1.9 yards/carry). For the second consecutive game the UMass defense played well enough to win.

The UMass offense gained 458 yards and Ford managed to spread the UMass receiving around. Sadiq Palmer (7-117 and Jesse Britt (3-57) gave the Minutemen other options than just Breneman and Isabella. Even the UMass offensive line started playing better in the second half using a moving pocket.
As far as the kicking goes---someday my head is going to explode.

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UMass write-up here.

Owls write-up here.

MassLive says Ford's impressive effort went for naught.

Matty Vautour reports the Minutemen fell short.

Matty also says UMass continues to struggle with field goals.

Philly.com says Temple WB Logan Marchi was efficient.

Owls DE Quincy Roche had a big game.

The Boston Herald says mistake-prone UMass fell to Temple.

Comcast Sports Philadelphia reports Temple sneaks past UMass on Quincy Roche's monster game.

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Friday, September 15, 2017

Game Day ---Temple

A quick look at the Owls:

Temple is coming off two seasons that included a record of 20-8, the best in Owl history. Temple lost the last game of the 2016 season, a 26-34 loss to Wake Forest in the Military Bowl. They also lost their HC Matt Rhule.

The Owls return four starters on offense and four on defense. Temple was great on defense in 2016 finishing 3rd in total defense in the nation. They were 11th nationally in scoring defense and were 1st or 2nd in the AAC in all defensive categories. The offense was more average. They were 66th in total offense.

The Owls have a new QB in Logan Marchi (39-69-519 2 TD's 129.7 EFF). Their best offensive threat is WR Ventral Bryant. Temple gave up 606 yards of offense against Notre Dame and lost 16-49. The Owls struggled against Villanova, which may have FCS' best defense. It took a FG with a minute left to break a tie against the Wildcats. Bryant had seven catches for 79 yards against Villanova. Temple is 4-1 all time in Friday night games.

So far, the UMass defense has played one-and-a-half good games. The Minutemen defense looked good against Old Dominion and they played the run well against Hawaii. Temple does not seem to be an offensive powerhouse. The UMass defense needs to not allow those broken coverages that doomed them against Hawaii.

The UMass offense will need to generate some points against what will probably be a stout Temple defense. So far, Ross Comis has not added any offensive capability to the 2017 season. Perhaps because of limited opportunity or just rust from his off season. The Minutemen could really use another weapon other than Andy Isabella and Adam Breneman.

An upset would go a long way to removing the sour taste generated so far in the Minutemen's 2017 season.

I'll be watching. Go UMass!

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The game will be televised nationally on ESPNU.

Mike Traini of "Fight Massachusetts" previews the Temple game.

Kevin Dillon of MassLive reports the Minutemen are seeking their first win of the season.

Matty Vautour says UMass is treating the Temple game as an opportunity.

Philly.com remembers Temple's wild last win over UMass.

Geoff Collins faced the UMass offense as Florida's defensive coordinator in 2016 and calls the Minutemen offense an "absolute pain".

The Boston Herald says UMass QB Andrew Ford returns home in a search for win.

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The Hartford Courant has a post on the scheduling changes and UMass AD Ryan Bamford gets a lot of coverage. Can you imagine any previous UMass AD being that fast on his feet? I can't.

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Thursday, September 14, 2017

UMass Football News--September 14th, 2017


MAJOR UPDATE: UMass has announced a major change to the 2017 schedule because of Hurricane Irma. The UMass at USF game previously scheduled for October 14th, 2017 has been postponed until 2022 or 2023.

The Minutemen will play at FIU on Saturday, Dec 2nd, 2017. That will be the 12th game for both teams.

This will create two addition bye weeks for the Minutemen. UMass will have two weeks to prepare for Georgia Southern's triple-option offense and the Minutemen will also get a bye week before BYU.

This seems to be a good deal for the Minutemen. USF could be the top Group-of-Five team in the nation. It was almost certain to be an ugly loss. FIU will be highly motivated after two losses in a row to UMass, but we should be competitive.

Mike Traini has a post on on the changes and notes the UMass brass went out of their way to accommodate the AAC. That might leave some coin in our bank if there should be some conference re-alignment someday,

BTW, the FIU football team is still stuck in Birmingham, AL

The AAC reworks its schedule in the wake of Hurricane Irma.

NBC Sports has a post on the AAC changes and mentions UMass.

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Matty Vautour has the inspiring story of UMass offensive lineman Ray Thomas-Ishman.  It's a real credit to Ray, after all he's been through, to be interested in academics and have his head on straight.

"Success comes to the lowly and to the poorly talented, but the special characteristic of a great person is to triumph over the disasters and panics of life"
                                     
                                                                     -Seneca, On Providence

Matty also has some out-takes from his story on Thomas-Ishman.

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Philly.com has three things to watch for in Friday's UMass-Temple game.

Athlon Sports has an Owls-Minutemen preview and prediction.

UnderDog Dynasty also has a UMass-Temple preview and prediction.

Temple remains 8th in the AAC conference's power rankings.

The Spread.com says take the under in the UMass-Temple game.

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HERO Sports picks Coastal Carolina to go 2-0 against UAB.

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Georgia closes the 2018 season with three straight home games: Auburn, UMass and Georgia Tech.

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Wednesday, September 13, 2017

UMass Football News--September 13th, 2017

UMass has their game notes for Temple up. Rene Ingoglia will be doing the game for ESPNU.

Rene's Twitter feed has some images of himself and the Orlando Police dept dealing with Hurricane Irma

So does Temple.

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Matty Vautour report UMass' Pennsylvanians are looking forward to playing at Lincoln Field.

In the article Matty report UMass senior DL Sha-Ki Holines may play Friday against Temple. Holines started nine games in 2016 and was a Phil Steele First Team All-Independent team member. His return should help the defensive line.

One bright spot in the loss to Old Dominion was the defensive line play. True freshman Jake Byczko 6-3 250 had 2 UT 8 AT 10 TT and 1 TFL.

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Ryan Ames of the UMass Daily Collegian says the Minutemen face a crucial fourth game against Temple Friday.

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Keeper's College Football Ranking has UMass a 12.97 point underdog to the Owls. BC and UConn are also double-digit dogs.

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CBS Philly reports Temple is getting ready for Friday Night Lights.

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Temple QB Logan Marchi is feeling more mobile.

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Tuesday, September 12, 2017

UMass Football News--September 12th, 2017

Temple has moved to a 14.5 point favorite in Las Vegas odds.

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Philip Sanzo of the UMass Daily Collegian says the Minutemen CAN beat Temple.

Get More Sports previews the UMass-Temple game and says take the Under.

Temple's Ventell Bryant came up big time against Villanova.

Temple Update reports the Owls offense has been struggling.

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Tennessee and UMass will kickoff at Noon on September 23rd. The article notes in 1998 the Vols won the FBS National Championship and UMass won the FCS National Championship.

Right now, Tennessee is focusing on the Gators.

Rocky Top Talk grades out the Vols win over FCS Indiana State (who went 4-7 in FCS in 2016). Tennessee held the Sycamores to 0-13 in third down conversions.

The Florida campus and athletic facilities seemed to have suffered minimal damage due to hurricane Irma.

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The Salt Lake Tribune wonders if BYU's season is already ruined.

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In something you won't see often, Mississippi State defensive lineman Jeffery Simmons scored TWO touchdowns against Louisiana Tech.

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Monday, September 11, 2017

UMass Football News--September 11th, 2017

Mike Traini of "Fight Massachusetts" reviews the UMass-Old Dominion game.

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Vegas has Temple by 12 over the Minutemen.

The Sports Chat Place previews the Temple-UMass game and looks for the Owls to cover the spread.

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Philly.com says Temple is still searching for an identity.

Metro.us wonders if Temple should be worried after struggling with Villanova.

Temple News reports RSSO QB Logan Marchi led the Owls on a two-minute drill that produced the winning score against Villanova.

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Tennesse won over FCS Indiana State, but dropped two slots in the Coaches Poll. Next the Vols travel to the Swamp to meet Florida.

The Coaches poll has USF #21 and Tennessee at #23. Mississippi State received 37 votes and Appalachian State received 1 vote.

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Ohio struggled on both sides of the ball in a 21-42 loss to Purdue.

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HEY, FLORIDA IS NOT THE ONLY STATE SUFFERING.

Exit sign clipped by truck in Dover.

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Sunday, September 10, 2017

UMass Football News--September 10th, 2017

OK, that one didn't hurt as much. Maybe I'm growing scar tissue or maybe it was because the UMass defense made its best effort by far this year.

The defense line, led by Ali Ali Musa (15 tackles !) and Da'Shean Downey controlled the line of scrimmage for most of the game. The Minutemen defensive blitz bothered Old Dominion's QB. The UMass defensive backs were talking to each other and there were no blown 50-yard completions. In addition, the defense made a nifty goal-line stand to stop another Monarch score. The defense flew to the ball all game. This was we were hoping the defense would look like from the beginning, out-sized but scrappy.

However, with Adam Breneman limited, the UMass offense had only one threat, Andy Isabella. We could not run the ball and both Comis and Ford were not effective. Part of that was, as I said in Thursday's write-up, because to the Old Dominion defense, which is pretty good. Hopefully, Breneman will be more recovered for Temple, because we surely need him.

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UMass write-up here.

Old Dominion had a school record eight sacks.

Connor Ryan of MassLive says the Minutemen offense sputtered.

Connor also reports Adam Breneman was limited by a lower body injury and also talks about Ali Ali-Musa's monster day. Fifteen tackles by a defensive lineman is just huge.

Matty Vautour reports Adam Breneman did not practice all week.

Matty also says the UMass offense sputtered.

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UCLA blew out Hawaii 56-23.

Coastal Carolina had a bye.

Temple squeaked out a 16-13 win over Villanova on a last-minute field goal. FCS pundits feel Villanova has one of the best defenses in FCS.

Tennessee beat FCS Indiana State 42-7.

USF-UConn game was canceled and won't be made up.

New Hampshire beat Georgia Southern using a big first half.

Appalachian State routed FCS Savannah State 56-7.

Mississippi State blew away Louisiana Tech 57-21.

Maine crushed Bryant 62-12.

BYU lost to Utah for the seventh straight time.

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Boston College, in what may have been a battle for the ACC East cellar, lost to Wake Forest 34-10 at the Heights.

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Saturday, September 09, 2017

Game Day --Old Dominion

Well, once more into the breach dear friends. In two games the Minutemen just have not made any plays. Against Hawaii we fumbled the ball and repeatedly let receivers loose in our backfield.

Last week, Comis after coming off a lost year with an ACL injury, was having a good series and then did not protect the ball while running. Our freshman kicker had stated in an interview earlier in the week he was "comfortable from the 50 in" missed a 30-yarder. Our best WR Andy Isabella dropped what would have been a 50 yard completion. The missed field goal and Isabella's drop probably left 10 points on the table. As bad as we played, we would have been tied in the fourth quarter.

Today, someone needs to make some positive plays. The defense needs to force some turnovers. The offense needs to finish drives. We need to move the inflection points toward UMass. Let's do it.

I'll be there cheering for the Minutemen. Go UMass!

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Matty Vautour says the line of scrimmage could decide today's game.

UnderDog Dynasty predicts a 38-21 Monarchs win.

UnderDog Dynasty believes Old Dominion will cover the spread.

The Virginia Pilot reports Old Dominion is deep enough so that there is competition to make the travel squad.

UMass WR Andy Isabella is featured in this article by the Boston Herald.

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I watched Ohio lose to Purdue last night 44-21. The Boilermakers pulled off a nifty double-reverse flea flicker against the Bobcats.

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Friday, September 08, 2017

UMass Football News--September 8th, 2017

A quick look at Old Dominion:

The Monarchs return 15 starters from a team that went 10-3 in 2016. Their season included a 24-20 win over Eastern Michigan in the Bahamas Bowl. ODU returns their all-time leading rusher Ray Lawry (3,338 career yards). In 2016 they averaged 430.8 yards/game and 35.1 points/game that was good for #50 and #31 in the nation respectively. Against Albany new QB Blake LaRussa went 14-20 161 yards and 1 TD. He did throw 2 INT's.

On defense the Monarchs were solid in 2016. They were #2 in the C-USA in scoring defense (27.2 points/game). They have two of the top DE's in the Group of Five conferences: Bunmi Rotimi and Oshane Ximines. The two combined for 14.5 sacks in 2016. They had three sacks and 3.5 TFL against Albany last week. Old Dominion held UMass to 16 points last year in what was probably Andrew Ford's poorest game. He'll probably see a lot of pressure from the Monarchs defensive line again Saturday.

UMass does have a chance to catch the Monarchs looking ahead as their next two opponents after the Minutemen are North Carolina and Virginia Tech.

Old Dominion is just a solid Group-of-Five team. Defense is probably their strong point. The Monarchs held nine 2016 opponents to 28 points or less. They held Albany to 17 points and 275 yards of total offense last Saturday. The Monarchs had 9.0 TFL against the Great Danes.

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Connor Ryan of MassLive says UMass looks to rebound.

Matty Vautour says Old Dominion expects an improved UMass team.

Mike Traini of "Fight Massachusetts" previews the Monarchs-Minutemen game.

SB Nation picks UMass to beat the point spread.

The Enterprise-News predicts UMass over Old Dominion 28-24.

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Good news starved UMass fans got some encouraging news yesterday when UMass A.D. Ryan Bamford received a contract extension through 2022.

Matty Vautour has a post on Bamford's contract.

UMass' announcement of Bamford's extension.

Mike Traini of "Fight Massachusetts" has a post on Bamford's extension.

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Conference USA turned down Liberty's bid to join the conference, but the Flames are looking to have the last laugh.

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Thursday, September 07, 2017

UMass Football News--September

UMass has the game notes for Old Dominion up.

So does Old Dominion.

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Matty Vautour reports Floridians on the UMass football team are keeping a close eye on hurricane Irma.

Matty also has a post on UMass coaches comments on the proposed NCAA rule allowing players to play immediately after transferring.

It would seem to me allowing unrestricted transferring would cause chaos in mid-major programs. It would be like the major league baseball's minor league system. The Power Five conferences could cherry pick players out of the lower divisions. I would be in favor of allowing players who graduate being allowed to play immediately and wherever they wished. Most students who transfer do not get all their credits from the original school accepted at the new school. A player who had a good year in a lower division and then jumps to Power Five school would probably lose some credits in the process. That can't help the graduation rate.

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The Virginai Pilot says UMass has chosen the lonely life of a FBS Independent.

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Old Dominion vs UMass
GRIDIRON CLUB PREGAME TAILGATE
Saturday, September 9, 2017

The UMass Gridiron Club thanks you for your continued support and investment in UMass football.  As part of our appreciation to you, we invite you to join us for the BBQ pre-game tailgate festivities.  Bring your favorite football dish and join other UMass football families, friends, alumni and supporters for a wonderful time of eats, treats and fellowship.

The UMass Gridiron Club pre-game BBQ tailgate is located at the entrance of Lot 11 with food available two hours before kickoff catered by football alum, Darryl Thomas, from Thomas' Smokey Pit Stop, LLC.  It will be a finger-licking good time and you will not want to miss out.

We look forward to seeing you Saturday.  GO UMass!!!

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Old Dominion RB Ray Lawry is piling up the numbers.

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Philly.com has UMass opponents USF and Temple as #1 and #8 in AAC power rankings. UConn is #11.

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Wednesday, September 06, 2017

UMass Football News--September 6th, 2017

Matty Vautour has a post about a couple of good stories from the new 2017 college football season.

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Garry Brown of MassLive has a suggestion for the UMass defense.

After two games, the Minutemen defense is #102 in scoring defense.

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The University of Albany ran the ball against Old Dominion last Saturday.

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Philly.com says Temple HC Geoff Collins learned some lessons in the Owls 49-16 loss to Notre Dame

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Tennessee lost a starting WR in their overtime win against Georgia Tech.

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Auburn held Georgia Southern's triple-option offense to 78 total yards Saturday.

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Tuesday, September 05, 2017

UMass Football News--September 5th, 2017

Matty Vautour reports Adam Breneman's injury is not serious and he could play Saturday. If Breneman can't play or is limited Travis Reynolds 6-5 252 or Kyle Horn 6-5 250 would be the UMass TE's. I think Reynolds is a pretty good athlete with good hands. Horn is coming off a ACL tear.

I think Taylor Edwards will be be a good player for UMass too. He was not in pads for the Hawaii game. Edwards was a three-star TE recruit.

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UMass and Ohio will swap $150,000 guarantees for their 2017-2018 home-and-home series.

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Howard Herman of the Berkshire Eagle says the Bay State teams: UMass and BC get attention when the win, not so much otherwise.

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Keepers College Football ranks has Old Dominion a 5.8 point favorite over the Minutemen. He also has BC and UConn as underdogs.

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Old Dominion's offensive line looks to play a lot better against UMass.

Ray Lawry, the top running back for the Monarchs is expected to be 100% for the UMass game.

The Daily Press profiles Bunmi Rotimi, Old Dominion's leading defensive lineman.

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Tennessee pulled off a thrilling overtime victory against Georgia Tech last evening.

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Monday, September 04, 2017

UMass Football News--September 4th, 2017

Matty Vautour says Saturday's loss to Coastal Carolina was the most disheartening yet.

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Bryton Barr was Hero's defensive player-of-the-week for his 13 tackles against Hawaii.

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Old Dominion opens as a 2 point favorite against UMass. (fixed point spread).

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The Virginia Pilot says Old Dominion was less than stellar against FCS Albany.

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Elijah Wilkinson made the Denver Broncos practice squad.

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Vladimir Ducasse made the Buffalo Bills roster, his fifth team in eight years.

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If you missed it, Liberty stunned Baylor.

Liberty students were so happy, the school canceled classes.

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Sunday, September 03, 2017

UMass Football News--September 3rd, 2017

OK, I got nothin'.

Friends, we could be looking at a historic season for the Minutemen.

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UMass write-up of the game.

Coastal Carolina's write-up.

Mark Chiarelli of MassLive reports the UMass defense struggled again.

Matty Vautour says UMass drops to 0-2.

Our best player, Adam Breneman was injured.

Mike Traini of "Fight Massachusetts" reviews the Chants game.

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Hawaii beat Western Carolina 41-18.

Old Dominion beat Albany 31-17.

Temple lost to Notre Dame 49-16

Tennessee plays Georgia Tech Monday.

Ohio beat Hampton 59-0.

USF moved to 2-0 with a 31-17 win over Stony Brook.

Georgia Southern got run over by Auburn 41-7.

Appalachian State lost to Georgia 31-7.

Mississippi State blew out Charleston Southern 49-0.

Maine had lost to UNH on Thursday.

BYU lost to LSU 27-0.

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Saturday, September 02, 2017

Game Day--Coastal Carolina

I can't get ESPN3 at all. The WHYN 560 also does not work.

The UMass Twitter feed has WEEI, which does work.

The Conway, SC weather is cloudy with thunderstorms, clearing in the evening.

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As I said yesterday, this is a tough game to predict. What UMass could do is continue to score points. We scored five TD's against Hawaii. The offense can move the ball. I think they'll do so today. The option is tough to defense. Former UMass Head Coach Jimmy Reid played it when he was in Amherst and said he thought it was the offensive scheme that placed the most pressure on defenses.

I think the Minutemen defense can play a lot better than they did against Hawaii. Most of the problems were mental. We were not run over physically. Clean up the mistakes and fly to the football.

I'll be watching and cheering for the Maroon & White.

Go UMass!

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Mark Chiarelli of MassLive reports UMass hopes to shake off last week's opening loss.

Matty Vautour says the UMass offense wants produce some pressure drives.

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John Connolly of the Boston Herald reports UMass DB Isiah Rogers wants to build off a strong performance from last week.

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The Post and Courier says Coastal Carolina begins life in FBS.

Myrtle Beach Online reports the Chants want to come out swinging.

MBO has a post on what you need to know about today's game between UMass and Coastal Carolina.

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The Bears released Victor Cruz.

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Hawaii opens at home against FCS Western Carolina.

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I watched the Boston College-NIU game last evening. The Eagles looked huge, but not very athletic. BC kicked a field goal in the last three minutes and NIU missed theirs giving the Eagles a 23-20 victory.

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Friday, September 01, 2017

UMass Football News--September 1st, 2017

A quick look a Coastal Carolina.

The Chants are a difficult team to preview. It's their first year in FBS. They're missing their HC, Joe Moglia (medical reasons) and they list their QB position six-deep. Coastal Carolina went 10-2 in 2016, so you would think they would be well positioned for FBS. However, they mostly played non-scholarship FCS teams and HBC squads. No CAA teams. No Big Sky teams. No Missouri Valley teams. They do get a fairly gentle introduction to FBS as they play only one Power Five team in 2017 (Arkansas) and apparently only one in 2018. Note that UMass will have played eight Power Five teams in 2016 and 2017.

The Chants are an option team. They averaged 254.3 yards a game in 2016. That would have put them 11th in FBS (one notch ahead of Ohio State). Total offense of 387.7 yards a game would have been good for 84th (about equal with Akron). They gave up 331.8 yards a game, which would have been good for #14 in FBS.

Coastal Carolina returns three starters on offense and five on defense. They must replace their lead RB and the entire offensive line except for the center.

In the past, when UMass played an option team, the Minutemen pulled a LB and inserted an extra safety, effectively playing a 4-2-5 defense. I think Don Brown did that way during his time at UMass. Defending the option means playing your assignment. Hopefully, the Minutemen defense won't miss as many of those as they did last week.

I think UMass has enough offensive firepower to win the game. The Minutemen defense needs to stop missing coverages. I think the front seven (or six if they pull a linebacker) will play well. The defensive backfield needs to improve.

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Matty Vautour has a post and a podcast on this week's game with Coastal Carolina.

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Mike Traini of "Fight Massachusetts" previews the Coastal Carolina game.

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Underdog Dynasty previews the UMass-Coastal Carolina game and predicts a Chants victory.

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Chowder and Champions previews the game and picks the Minutemen to win.

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Howard Herman of the Berkshire Eagle looks at the game and talks about how a player from the Berkshires ended up down in Conway, SC.

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In Thursday night games, Holy Cross threw a scare into UConn.

Maine and UNH hooked up in a barn-burner.

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Thursday, August 31, 2017

UMass Football News--August 31st, 2017

UMass has their game notes for Coastal Carolina up.

So does Coastal Carolina.

News 13 has some game notes and Coastal Carolina's weekly video press conference.

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Former UMass player and coach Bill Durkin is the running backs and special teams coach for the Chants.

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Coastal Carolina's stadium has been undergoing renovations does not, as yet have a certificate of occupancy. The state engineer will be inspecting the stadium today.

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Lucas Kotler, who's a 6-4 315 pound member of the UMass offensive line, is featured in this article by Matty Vautour. Kotler has 10 career appearances for the Minutemen.

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Saturday Down South ranks SEC defenses and has Mississippi State #12 and Tennessee as #9.

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Old Dominion's Bobby Wilder calls on his Maine roots to build the Monarchs program.

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The first Thursday night college football slate begins today. The only 2017 UMass opponent playing is Maine and the game is available on College Sports Live. Holy Cross at UConn will be on ESPN3.

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Wednesday, August 30, 2017

UMass Football News--August 30th, 2017

Matty Vautour has a post on Michael Schreiner being named UMass kicker. As I said Sunday, I thought Schreiner had a strong debut. If we deserve any of the snarky ridicule that comes with our performance in FBS so far, the UMass kicking game has been one area that it's been true.

Kicking has been a negative for years. We missed critical field goals. Whipple has gone for low-probability fourth-and-whatevers a number of times. My particular peeve was kickoffs. The Minutemen would score and then we would kick the ball out of bounds and give the opposing team the ball right back on the 35. In 2016, UMass was in the bottom five is scoring production from field goals. Not to mention we were in the bottom of FBS in field goal percentage.

Let's hope that Schreiner's good beginning last Saturday was the start of a outstanding career at UMass.

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Adam Breneman did alright too.

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Keepers College Football Ratings has UMass a slim 1.72 point favorite over Coastal Carolina.

Vegas Insider has the Minutemen by 2.5.

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This article reports UMass and Coastal Carolina are negotiating a home-and-home series to begin in 2019 or 2012.

The Spokesman-Review picks Coastal Carolina 9th in the 11 team Sunbelt conference for 2017.

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Sports Illustrated says the UMass-Hawaii game was the best contest of  the week zero games.

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North Jersey.com names Victor Cruz the be one of the top players ever to come out of the area.

Speaking of Victor, this article discusses his second career with Bears.

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UMass commit Shatar McClay caught a 92-yard TD in his school's opening game last week.

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IT'S PROBABLY KIM JONG'S MINIONS

The blog got 178 hits from an Asian defense news website yesterday...

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Tuesday, August 29, 2017

UMass Football News--August 29th, 2017

Matty Vautour has a post on the UMass Coaches are getting the team and themselves back on track. Matty says senior DL Sha-Ki Holines will be a game-time decision Saturday. He also mentions the Minutemen had two DL players make their first game appearance: RSFR 6-3 275 pound Charlie Timite and true freshman 6-3 250 pound Jake Bycko.

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Mike Traini has a post on A.D. Ryan Bamford's question-and-answer session on Facebook Live. A number of replies concern the football program.
  • the football schedules for 2018 and 2019 are complete
  • future games could include Rutgers and Akron
  • priority improvement for McGuirk would include a new scoreboard
  • UMass is considering a new indoor practice facility
There's more in the article and it's worth a read. Again, I'm impressed with Bamford. He knows what he's doing and I think we'll see the results in UMass football, basketball and hockey.

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The Sentinel and Enterprise says the Pop Warner kids at halftime had a great time.

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West Hawaii Today reports Hawaii had some breakdowns too.

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KHON TV reports on John Ursua's big night against the Minutemen. Lots of video of Ursua running free in the UMass backfield :(

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Coastal Carolina adds nine games to future schedules.

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The Virginia Pilot report Old Dominion's new QB will be Blake LaRussa.

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Monday, August 28, 2017

UMass Football Recruiting 2018--Josiah Johnson

Hudl.com image
Josiah Johnson, a 6-5 203 pound pro-style QB from Jacksonville, FL has Tweeted he's received an offer from UMass.

247Sports page here.

Hudl.com has video.

Prep Sports Recruiting features Johnson in this article.

Beyond the Hashmarks also has a story featuring Johnson.

UMass is Johnson's first offer. Drawing interest from Memphis, Louisiana Monroe and Old Miss.