Thursday, May 31, 2007

WTF?? Spring Game Experience scars Hargreaves, heads to East Carolina

Well, part of that is true. Media reports from ECU say that Vernon Hargreaves is leaving BG for East Carolina. He was coaching LBs at BG and will coach the D-Line for the Pirates. I have no idea if the spring game played a role.

This is disappointing. Granted, we had no idea whether this guy would succeed for us. On the other hand, he coached for the Miami Hurricanes for eight years, and I think we felt he had the chance to really deliver for our program at a position where we need some coaching.

When we hired him, I said the Nation was "gaga" over him. So, I expect some disappointment.

Not to mention we now need to go get a new coach, and then let the LBs adjust to yet another new coach before the season starts in less than 100 days. Not a good situation. Perhaps a good solution would be to put D-coordinator Mike Ward (who the Nation was anti-gaga over) in charge of LBs for this season.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

If you want to screw the Falcons, it will cost you!!

Falcon fans are constantly agitated by going on the road for the front end of a 1-1, and then have the team dump out on us. See Florida International or South Florida. Boise State does not apply-I think we opted out of that one. In this week's ask the AD, GChris reveals that it will now cost $500K to back out on us! So there.

Beyond that, he reveals we were paid $650K to go to Columbus, and pay $200K to get a I-AA team to the Doyt.

I guess the high back out fee is a good idea. I wonder, however, why we didn't do it before. It can't be because Krebs didn't think of it--I mean, who wouldn't think of it? I always figured that no one would sign a 1-1 with us if there was a really high fee to back out. Perhaps we can start to get better deals.

Meanwhile, the 1-1 with Minnesota is an excellent deal for our team.

And, I will say it again. The Falcon Nation loves the idea of six homes at the Doyt. Big Time.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Athletic Director Christopher Answers Questions--BG OUT (for now) of Patriot Bowl

A while back, I mentioned that Greg Christopher, who is our AD, was answering questions submitted to him on the website. His first set of answers read like they had been produced by the PR department, so I didn't link to them.

His second set are out, and these at least read more authentically.

And they have actual content.

The most interesting question is about the Patriot Bowl. When announced, the Patriot Bowl was well received in many quarters, including this one.

Apparently it was a little less well received in the quarters that include the AD's office. Here is what he said:

The Patriot Bowl is a new regular-season series that matches up a MAC opponent with one of the service academies. Games will be played in early September, preferably over Labor Day Weekend, in Cleveland at Browns Stadium. The inaugural game pits Akron against Army this fall. My understanding from the Cleveland Sports Commission and the MAC office is that a three-year commitment exists, with hope that the series will continue long-term.

While on one hand, the Patriot Bowl presents a nice opportunity, I am hesitant to commit BGSU given the current structure. My reasons are two-fold:

  • First, our experience in Cleveland with the Wisconsin game was two-sided. The players and fans that attended enjoyed a first-rate event. Unfortunately, the business aspects of the game didn't match expectations: attendance and game sponsorships lagged.

  • Second, the only way the Patriot Bowl makes sense to me is if the game becomes an "extra" home game. As it stands, the schools playing in the Patriot Bowl are giving up a home game to play in Cleveland - similar to what we did with Wisconsin. Many have heard me say that our priority is playing games in The Doyt and working toward six home games each fall.

    Thus the short answer to your question is that BGSU has no immediate plans to participate in the Patriot Bowl.

  • Emphasis added by me. I think this is interesting. First, I 100% applaud the goal of getting six games at the Doyt every year. That is the only way to build a fan base--to have enough opportunities for people to build attraction to the place and the team. And, if going to Cleveland didn't net us any $$, all the more reason to play at home. I am 100% in favor of us scheduling 6 Doytgames, even if one of them has to be a I-AA team.

    Having said that, I didn't think it was a big deal for one time every 5-6 years to have five home games and one of them in Cleveland. If it is rare enough to be special, I was OK with it. I was not crazy about the Cleveland game in the first place, but we went and ended up having a good time.

    Now, the Patriot Bowl was supposed to include the Ohio MAC schools--Kent, Akron, BG, Miami, Toledo and OU, on a rotating basis. Miami and OU might have additional reasons to not participate, given they are so far from Cleveland. If they aren't in, and BG isn't it, that leaves Toledo, Kent and Akron. Thing is--if the MAC isn't careful, they are going to rotate Kent and Akron up there, and that's an Rx for failure.

    Finally, this. If the Cleveland Sports Authority does a good job with the game, gets corporate involvement and turns it into a cash machine, then I think opinions (including BG's) will change.

    The AD also put his support behind the hockey program. (There are big problems and rumors about the state of our facility, and many people feel it is unrealistic for us to keep Hockey, basketball and I-A football in a small school--something that is not being done successfully at very many schools like ours.) Hockey is safe--as it should be.

    Monday, May 21, 2007

    Hoops Staff Now Complete--UM Assistant to come to BG

    This man, who looks like a guy who would run the cafeteria at Mac, is our new assistant basketball coach.

    I kid.

    Anyway, his name is Andy Moore, and he was an assistant to Tommy Amaker at UM. Amaker's staff was not highly regarded at UM--many felt he hired people who would not challenge him.

    His collegiate career also includes EMU and some non D-I schools. He was the golf coach at Kenyon. (I shit you not).

    He is familiar with this area, is a native Ohioan, and I can only assume has been carefully selected for this position. He did not make it to the Big 10 by accident.

    Welcome aboard Andy. This completes the Falcon hoops coaching staff, as they work with one remaining scholarship.

    Thursday, May 17, 2007

    Falcons Honored for Graduation Rate

    Though it might be hard to tell from this picture,
    John Lanning (68) is a college graduate.

    BGSU was honored by the AFCA for graduating 70% of its football players.

    I'm extremely pleased with this. I root for a mid major, and I'm proud of it. It would not be acceptable to me if the program embarrassed the school, or failed to graduate students. Other programs--with senior General Studies majors--are a shame. A school should graduate the same percentage of football players (or any sport) as in the general population. A player who completes his eligibility yet does not graduate should be rare.

    So, Coach and players, good job. Even if you don't have the sense to stay out of the rain.

    Monday, May 14, 2007

    More Hackenberg

    The Blade's Dave Hackenberg did one of those mish-mash Larry King columns today, and had a nice nugget from Louis Orr. I like the sound of this, because its the right way to recruit our building. I can't imagine any player wouldn't be attracted to that place, if they were then when its rocking and we need a stop and it is just a wall of sound.

    •I like new coach Louis Orr's take on recruiting to an aging Anderson Arena at BGSU. "I think the facility factor can be overblown," he said. "When a young man comes to see a Bowling Green-Toledo game, he'll get the feel for what Anderson Arena is all about. It's intense. Are there nicer places in the MAC? Sure. But an empty arena is an empty arena. Without the fans making the place a tremendous homecourt advantage, it's just a pretty face."

    Friday, May 11, 2007

    Football Recruits

    It is never too early to start think about football recruiting--well, actually, it COULD be too early, but there is nothing else going on, so we're going to do it anyway.

    CSTV is reporting that Brandon Klueuer of Cincinnati Colerain has verballed to BG. He is a 6.4, 280 O-lineman. Hard to tell much more about him. There are reports that he is the first player in Falcon history to have the vowels "ue" repeated in his name, but than cannot be confirmed.

    Also, Neal Dahlman of Illinois, a LB has also reportedly verballed.

    Who knows how reliable these reports are, but there you go.

    Thursday, May 10, 2007

    Say Hello to the Patriot Bowl

    This idea has been percolating for a long time, and has finally come to fruition. Much as BG played Wisconsin over Labor Day weekend, now the Patriot Bowl will be played at Browns Stadium every Labor Day Weekend. It will feature a service academy against an Ohio MAC team, on a rotating basis.

    I think this is an awesome thing. A trip to Cleveland every six years is probably about right for our fan base, (making it rare enough to be still special), and the service academies are great opponents for the MAC. They are "big name" enough to draw fans, but also teams that a good MAC team can beat...or, some years, a bad MAC team. They travel well and have a following all over the place.

    Good job to the MAC office. It all starts this year with Akron playing Army.

    Monday, May 07, 2007

    Hoops News. First recruit, Hackenberg weighs in

    The Sentinel is reporting in today's edition that the first recruit in the Orr Era has signed at BG. He is 6'9" forward Cameron Madlock, of Whitefish Bay, WI. His father, Eddie Percy, played at Kansas State.

    I think the Nation will be happy with his size and apparent athletic ability--but less happy that he is not a point guard. (Don't give up hope--there is still time!)

    Some notes:

    • He averaged 14 points, 8 boards and 2 blocks for a 21-4 team in Wisconsin. (good numbers, not awesome. Not sure about all-conference or team honors).
    • He wasn't heavily recruited because he didn't play hoops as a junior. WMU did offer, he reports.
    • Coach Orr says he is a mobile 4. Which, given the style coach apparently wants to play (more later) that should come in handy.
    • He will enroll in classes this June.

    That gives us some pretty viable big guys--Polk, Marschall, Larson and Madlock. I hope help is on the way at guard. We have 2-3 scholarships to give, depending on if Guerin gets a scholarship from the coach, which I suspect he will, since it had been promised.

    Also, Dave Hackenberg did a nice piece in The Blade on Coach Orr in the paper on Sunday. Note the reference from Charlie Coles of Orr being the "Tony Dungy of college basketball."

    For the fans who are wondering what it will look like on the floor, here is a clue from the man himself.

    "Hubie is a defensive-oriented coach who demands a certain toughness factor," Orr said. "He believes in defense, rebounding, toughness and attention to detail when it comes to the game plan, and so do I.

    "I believe a team feeds off defense, that you up the tempo of a game to create opportunities. You pressure, you contest shots, you rebound at the defensive end, and you push the ball. I believe in team; that's non-negotiable.

    Meanwhile, the nation is getting jazzed for hoops--for the first time in a long while.

    Saturday, May 05, 2007

    Say Goodbye to the Grass

    And there you have it. After 41 years, the grass is coming off the field at the Doyt. Here's the Sentinel's story on it.

    The Falcon Nation seems to have divided opinions on this move. The U is spending almost a million dollars to get this done. A lot of people--me included--will hold out nostalgia for the grass field at our Stadium. At one time, we were known for having one of the best turf fields in the country. The playing surface was impeccable. Recently, the advent of play late into November along with deterioration of the aging draining system caused the field to be a sub-par surface a couple of times--once when we beat Toledo for the MAC West title in Brandon I, and again last year when Miami played BG in that awful muck.

    So, would I prefer grass? Yes.

    But, I get it. Times do change. The quality of FieldTurf is so much higher than the old astroturf, and since it is so grass-like, yet does not have to be maintained, etc, and will always provide a quality surface. It can also be used for many more activities. Five teams in the MAC already had this surface. (Hell, our local HS has field turf).

    It is time to change.

    The turf will provide a better visual appearance to the Stadium, and the end zones can be bright orange, etc. I think we will adjust to the change pretty quickly. It might help recruiting a little, too.

    Friday, May 04, 2007

    Falcons Try outs

    Based on some chatter on AZZ which I believe to be accurate, Devon Parks has a try-out this weekend with the Browns and Derrick Markray with the Redskins. I can't find any evidence that either of them is a UDFA--rather, they have to play their way into being a UDFA.

    Best of luck to both, who were great Falcons.

    Tuesday, May 01, 2007

    DD Reports on John Reimold

    Had the chance to hear DD in studio on The Ticket today. In the middle of a biblical hailstorm, Coach revealed that John Reimold has opened a mortgage business in Las Vegas after tiring of playing hoops overseas. Apparently, Germaine Fitch and Patrick Phillips are living with him. As DD says, "I don't know what's going on, but I can tell you there isn't much work going on."

    Nice to check in on a Falcon grad doing well. He was my son's Jr. Falcon coach and a good guy.