Monday, October 31, 2011

FCS Top 25 - Oct. 31

It's Halloween, also the last day before the month of November.

There is a new No. 1, as North Dakota State defeated previous No. 2 Northern Iowa and previous No. 1 Georgia Southern, lost to Appalachian State.

Here is my ballot for The Sports Network/ Top 25.

I continue to have the University at Albany on my ballot, this week at No 17. The Great Danes have won six games in a row, but are not ranked in the poll.

The number in the (x) is the difference from the real poll.

1. North Dakota State
2. Montana State
3. Appalachian State
4. Lehigh (8)
5. Maine (7)
6. Sam Houston State (4)
7. Georgia Southern (5)
8. Northern Iowa (6)
9. Montana (10)
10. New Hampshire (9)
11. Wofford
12. Old Dominion
13. Harvard (23)
14. Towson
15. James Madison (13)
16. Jacksonville State (18)
17. UAlbany (NR)
18. William & Mary (19)
19. Liberty (22)
20. Massachusetts (NR)
21. Jackson State (15)
22. Delaware (16)
23. Central Arkansas (25)
24. Tennessee Tech (20)
25. Alabama State (NR)

In poll, but not on my ballot
17. Illinois State
21. Indiana State
24. South Dakota

Others receiving votes: Cal Poly 346, Furman 346, Alabama State 341, Massachusetts 307, Norfolk State 187, Brown 154, Alabama A&M 135, Albany 109, North Dakota 105, Portland State 71, Southern Utah 50, Jacksonville 49, Samford 49, Chattanooga 45, Georgetown 41, Youngstown State 34, Eastern Kentucky 33, Stony Brook 30, Northwestern State 22, Duquesne 15, UT Martin 12, San Diego 12, Richmond 8, Tennessee State 7, Florida A&M 4, South Carolina State 2, Bethune-Cookman 1, Penn 1, The Citadel 1.

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Saturday, October 29, 2011

Union grabs Shoes, UAlbany streaks on

SCHENECTADY - It was a great game at Union's Frank Bailey Field.

The Dutchmen grabbed the Dutchman Shoes back from RPI, with a 38-28 victory that gives Union its fourth win in its last five games.

Justin and Connor Gallo (above) combined for five receiving touchdowns, as the Union passing game was terrific on Saturday.

This marked the highest scoring Dutchman Shoes game since, Union's 49-42 victory in 2005.

Down on Staten Island, the University at Albany continues to roll right along.

A huge snowstorm slowed them down in the first half, but the Great Danes emerged with a 24-0 victory over Wagner.

UAlbany has now won six games in a row and is 5-0 in Northeast Conference play, with three games remaining.

The Great Danes host Bryant next Saturday, at 1 p.m., at University Field.

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Thursday, October 27, 2011

VIDEOS: Union, RPI talk about Dutchman Shoes

RPI coach Tim Landis talks about the Dutchman Shoes rivalry, from the Nott Building on Union's campus on Wednesday afternoon.

Union coach John Audino talks about the rivalry.

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Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Siena men's hoops picked 6th, women 7th

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. - The Siena men's basketball team is a middle of the road team.

So say the coaches of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, which voted them sixth in the preseason poll on Tuesday, in Springfield, Mass., the new home of the MAAC basketball championships from 2012-14.

Iona is the No. 1 team, followed by Fairfield, Loyola (Md.) and Rider.

The Saints were picked to finish second in last year's preseason poll, but struggled to a 13-18 finish, including an 8-10 record in league play, despite having player of the year Ryan Rossiter.

Junior forward O.D. Anosike was selected to the third team all-MAAC, but was the only Siena men's player honored on the preseason list.

It marked the first time in four years that the Saints haven't placed at least two players on the preseason first team. In 2008-09, Kenny Hasbrouck, Edwin Ubiles and Alex Franklin were chosen, while in 2009-10 Ubiles and Ronald Moore were selected and last season Rossiter and Clarence Jackson represented Siena on the preseason first team.

Siena has also had the last three MAAC postseason Players of the Year recipients in Hasbrouck ('08-09), Franklin ('09-10) and Rossiter, last season.

The preseason first team included Scott Machado and Mike Glover of Iona, and Ryan Olander and Derek Needham of Fairfield and Rider's Novar Gadson.

After a terrific end to last season, the Siena women's team in fourth place and pushed six-time champion Marist to the edge in a semifinal matchup.

Surprisingly, the Saints were selected to finish in seventh place in the preseason poll.

Gina Castelli's club lost leading scorer and rebounder Serena Moore, but have a nice core group of players, including seniors Maja Gerlyng and Cristina Centeno.

Centeno was chosen to the all-MAAC preseason second team, while Gerlyng was placed on the third team.

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Monday, October 24, 2011

ECAC Lambert Poll - Oct. 24

Here is my ballot for the ECAC Lambert Meadowlands poll.

The number in the (x) if it's different from the actual poll.

1. Lehigh (2)
2. Maine (1)
3. New Hampshire (5)
4. Towson (3)
5. James Madison (4)
6. Old Dominion
7. William & Mary (T9)
8. Harvard (7)
9. UAlbany (T9)
10. Massachusetts (8)

Not on my ballot, but in poll.
T9. Brown

Division III
1. Salisbury
2. Thomas More
3. Wesley
4. Delaware Valley
5. Johns Hopkins
6. Montclair State (8)
7. Kean (6)
8 . Hobart (7)
9. St. John Fisher
10. Cortland State (T10)

Not on my ballot, but in poll.
T10. Widener

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FCS Top 25 - Oct. 24

Here is my ballot for The Sports Network/ FCS Top 25.

The University at Albany continues to roll along, winning its fifth straight game on Saturday, defeating Central Connecticut State 63-35.

With many teams losing this week, I moved the Great Danes up to No. 20, on my ballot.

UAlbany is still not in the poll, but they are now receiving 90 votes, making them the 36th ranked team.

My ballot is below. Here is a link to the poll.

The number in (x) is if it's different in the actual poll.

1. Georgia Southern
2. Northern Iowa
3. Montana State (4)
4. North Dakota State (3)
5. Lehigh (7)
6. Maine (8)
7. Appalachian State (5)
8. Montana (11)
9. Sam Houston State (6)
10. New Hampshire
11. Towson (13)
12. Wofford
13. James Madison (9)
14. Jacksonville State
15. Old Dominion
16. South Dakota (17)
17. William & Mary (18)
18. Alabama State (16)
19. Harvard (24)
20. UAlbany (NR)
21. Liberty (23)
22. Massachusetts (NR)
23. Jackson State (19)
24. Central Arkansas (NR)
25. Delaware (21)

In poll, but not on my ballot
20. Indiana State
22. Illinois State
25. Tennessee Tech

Also receiving votes in poll
Others receiving votes: Central Arkansas 303, Massachusetts 300, Richmond 297, Furman 256, Chattanooga 231, North Dakota 203, Cal Poly 200, Eastern Washington 141, Norfolk State 139, Brown 136, Albany 90, Jacksonville 79, Texas State 56, Alabama A&M 48, San Diego 29, Samford 27, Penn 23, Florida A&M 20, Southern Utah 20, Portland State 19, Georgetown 18, Sacramento State 16, Stony Brook 14, South Dakota State 12, UT Martin 12, Southern Illinois 10, Elon 10, Eastern Kentucky 8, McNeese State 6, Bethune-Cookman 5, South Carolina State 5, Duquesne 4, The Citadel 4, Youngstown State 3, Holy Cross 3, Northwestern State 2, Drake 1, Lafayette 1.

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Saturday, October 22, 2011

RPI, UAlbany post big football victories

TROY - The defense was the story for RPI on Saturday.

The Engineers defense turned in its best performance of the season, in a 14-7 victory over St. Lawrence.

It was a huge Liberty League victory for RPI, which is now 2-1 in conference play and 3-3 overall.

The old cliche is the next game is the biggest of the season.

That really is the case this upcoming week, as RPI and Union (2-1, 3-4) will meet for the coveted Dutchman Shoes.

The Engineers won the game last year. This season the winner will still have a shot at the league crown and a spot in the Division III NCAA tournament.

Out in Connecticut, the University at Albany made another huge statement.

Dan Di Lella set a school record with five touchdown passes, as the Great Danes routed the Blue Devils of Central Connecticut State, 63-35.

UAlbany is still the only undefeated team in the Northeast Conference, at 4-0, and they have won five straight games, to improve their record to 5-2.

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Friday, October 21, 2011

Silas and Gomis will sit for Siena

The NCAA did not change their stance regarding Siena freshmen Lionel Gomis and Imoh Silas.

Both Silas and Gomis will sit out this year and will be eligible for the 2012-13 season.

This is difficult news for the Saints and coach Mitch Buonguro who are thin up front, already with the loss of Davis Martens for the season.

It's the second MAAC-related NCAA decision in the past two days.

On Thrusday, the NCAA granted Lamont "MoMo" Jones a hardship wavier, allowing the Arizona transfer to play this season for Iona.

If you remember, University at Albany forward Will Harris received this type of wavier, when he transferred in from Virginia.

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Tuesday, October 18, 2011

ECAC Lambert Poll - Oct. 17

Here is my second ballot for the ECAC Lambert poll.

The number in the (x) is if it's different than the actual ballot which can be found here.

1. Lehigh (2)
2. Maine (1)
3. William & Mary (T8)
4. New Hampshire (5)
5. James Madison (3)
6. Towson (4)
7. Massachusetts (6)
8. Delaware (7)
9. Old Dominion (T8)
10. Harvard

Division III
1. Wesley
2. Thomas More
3. Montclair State (4)
4. Salisbury (3)
5. Delaware Valley
6. Johns Hopkins
7. Kean
8. Hobart
9. Cortland State
10. St. John Fisher

Not on my ballot, but in poll
T10. Endicott

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Monday, October 17, 2011

FCS Poll - Oct. 17

Here is my ballot for The Sports Network/ Top 25.

For the first time in my 1 1/2 voting on the poll, I put the University at Albany into the Top 25, at No. 24. The Great Danes have won four games in a row and are the lone unbeaten in the Northeast Conference. Also, their loss to Maine looks better and better, as the Black Bears are 5-1, their only loss coming to FBS Pitt. UAlbany's other loss came at Colgate (4-3), in the season opener, in overtime.

While I voted for the Great Danes, UAlbany isn't in the poll, but they are receiving votes.

The number in (x) is if the team is in a different position in the actual poll.

1. Georgia Southern
2. Northern Iowa
3. Montana State (4)
4. North Dakota State (3)
5. Wofford
6. Lehigh (8)
7. Maine (9)
8. Appalachian State (6)
9. Jacksonville State (10)
10. Montana (12)
11. Sam Houston State (7)
12. William & Mary (14)
13. New Hampshire
14. James Madison (11)
15. Towson
16. Massachusetts (22)
17. Indiana State
18. Delaware (16)
19. Old Dominion (21)
20. South Dakota (25)
21. Alabama State (19)
22. Norfolk State (24)
23. Harvard (NR)
24. UAlbany (NR)
25. Liberty (NR)

Teams in poll, not on my ballot
18. Richmond
20. North Dakota
23. Jackson State

Others receiving votes: Texas State 217, Tennessee Tech 211, Liberty 150, Chattanooga 135, Sacramento State 111, Central Arkansas 109, San Diego 104, Harvard 98, Samford 93, McNeese Sate 79, Illinois State 41, Weber State 36, South Carolina State 30, Eastern Washington 30, Brown 23, Cal Poly 22, Albany 19, Coastal Carolina 17, Furman 16, Tennessee State 13, Elon 10, Alabama A&M 9, Jacksonville 8, Stony Brook 8, Portland State 6, South Alabama 4, North Carolina A&T 4, Southern Utah 3, Southern Illinois 3, Penn 3, Sacred Heart 2, Northwestern State 2, Murray State 1, Alcorn State 1, UT Martin 1.

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Saturday, October 15, 2011

Great Danes looking like NEC's best

The University at Albany posted a nice victory over Robert Morris on Saturday, 28-17.

Read my quick recap here and make sure to pick up The Record or check out for the game story coming tomorrow.

With back-to-back victories and four straight wins, the Great Danes look like the best team in the conference RIGHT NOW.

After talking to the players, they realize every week there is a potential to lose, especially next weekend, when they travel to Central Connecticut State.

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Friday, October 14, 2011

Siena expecting major growth from Beard

When assistant coach Craig Carter started showing up at St Vincent-St. Mary's games, it certainly caught the attention of Davonte Beard.

“That excited me,” said Beard, who played at the same high school as LeBron James. “When I saw Coach Carter at one of my games, I thought that’s a big-time school, so I’d be very interested in going to that school.”

Beard, who committed to Siena last spring, is expected to become a good player for the Saints. With the lack of depth, the 6-foot-2 guard will have to step right in.

“I’m excited,” Beard said Friday, at media day. “I’m glad that I have a lot of expectations for me, but at the end of the day I just want to play hard and give what Coach wants from me.”

Coach Mitch Buonaguro set the bar high right away for Beard, saying he expects a lot of out of him, while introducing the team on Friday morning.

"There's a lot of high expectations for him, coming into the league," Buonaguro said. "I expect him to be one of the better freshman in the league. I think he has tremendous ability.

Beard said he was attracted to Siena as soon as he stepped foot on campus.

“It’s like a brotherhood,” he said.

The transition for Beard and the other five freshmen was rough at first, but as practice begins Friday evening, they are feeling more comfortable.

With six new players on the roster, Siena will have to get contributions from some of them right away.

“I’d say we’re expected to do a lot this year,” Beard said.

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Siena's Downey hopes injury are in the past

When the Siena men's basketball team struggled last season, many fans wondered where was Kyle Downey?

He was wondering that same thing.

Slowed by a right knee issue, Downey never really felt like himself last season, as the Saints struggled to a 13-18 finish.

“Last year was frustrating because it wasn’t me as a player out there,” Downey said Friday, at the team's media day event. “I feel like I could have contributed a lot more, but it was my limitation with my knee and my shot wasn’t there.”

Downey averaged just 6.2 points per game and played in just 23 games, last season, as a junior.

Downey said throughout the season, he could feel his knee shift on him, even with the brace on and when it finally came off, the knee was still sore.

“It all caught up to me and I couldn’t get back to where I wanted to be,” he said.

This season, he's feeling "phenomenal" and hopes to really contribute once again.

“I struggled last year and it was really frustrating,” Downey said. “Hopefully, this year I can show people what I can actually do.”

Downey begins practice 10 pounds lighter than last year because as the injury lingered, he couldn't do as much conditioning as he would normally.

“I needed the summer just to get my body back,” he said.

Now healthy, coach Mitch Buonaguro is expecting a lot from the senior.

“There’s not a guy in the program that has worked harder than him — first on his body, on his game and his overall attitude to leading this team back to a championship,” Buonaguro said.

Downey says he had his teammates have worked too hard, not to make this season as successful as possible.

“We put in a lot more work this summer, probably more than the last four or five years because last year didn’t sit well with us," he said.

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Thursday, October 13, 2011

VIDEO: UAlbany's Logan Aronhalt

Junior guard Logan Aronhalt talks about the upcoming season.

Practice begins Friday and the University at Albany opens the season, Friday, Nov. 11, at Pittsburgh.

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Black is back for Great Danes

Mike Black couldn't remember where he was or why he was there.

Black had just come off the floor during a game against Dawson College All-Stars, on Aug. 22, after running into a screen that had knocked him out cold.

While Black is fine now and will practice on Friday, the first day teams can officially take the floor, that wasn't the case right after that game.

“For about a week, I was out of it,” Black said on Thursday.

Black and UAlbany coach Will Brown both used the word "scary" about the situation.

“Anything that’s close to being a concussion, you just have to sit guys out, let the doctors look at them, let him pass the concussion tests," Brown said. "He seems to be fine.”

Black didn't play for the rest of the trip, but hasn't had any lingering effects of the concussion since.

“We were very careful with him,” Brown said. “Our training staff and doctors did a great job

Black has become one of the veteran leaders for the Great Danes and as the point guard, will be counted on heavily this season.

“We’re feeling pretty confident,” he said.

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Aronhalt healthy and ready for UAlbany

Logan Aronhalt is a very good basketball player.

The scary thing could be that Aronhalt, who averaged 14.6 points per game last season, might get better still.

Asked today if he was the healthiest he's been since arriving at UAlbany, his response was yet.

“My freshman year I wasn’t healthy at all,” he said. “Last year, I was still up and down a little bit.

Aronhalt dealt with a number of foot issues when he first arrived at UAlbany and red-shirted his first season.

He earned third team all-conference honors last year, as a sophomore, and now is primed for another big season.

"I definitely think, now, I'm ready to go," he said.

While he and fellow junior Mike Black were left off of the preseason all-conference team, coach Will Brown is confident they are two of the best players in the league.

“I think both of those guys want to be first team all-league guys,” Brown said. “Both of them are ready to take the next step. Does that mean they’re both going to be first team guys? I don’t know because we have other guys who are going to play on the perimeter for us.”

The Great Danes actually have six newcomers this season - Peter Hooley, Jayson Guerrier, Tanner Gibson, Gerardo Suero, Sam Rowley and Chris Page.

“This is probably as good of a group of newcomers that we’ve had since I’ve been here,” Brown said. “How that translates when the lights go on will be interesting, but it was pretty good for us when we went to Canada.”

UAlbany opens the season against Pitt, on Nov. 11.

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UAlbany chosen 4th at America East Media Day

The University at Albany men's basketball team finished tied for third last season in the America East and there are hopes for an even higher finish around the Great Danes' camp this year.

That's not exactly what the rest of the coaches around the league are thinking, selecting UAlbany fourth in the 2011-12 America East preseason poll, on Thursday, at the conference's media day, in Hartford, Conn.

The Great Danes are selected to finish behind Boston University, Stony Brook and Vermont.

UAlbany finished last season with a 16-16 overall record, 9-7 in the America East.

Tim Ambrose, the team's leading scorer graduated, but the Great Danes return the core of the squad, a team looking for a strong season.

The UAlbany women's team is selected to finish fifth under second-year coach Katie Abrahamson-Henderson.

Junior guard Ebone Henry was selected to the preseason all-conference team.

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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

ECAC Lambert Polls - Oct. 10

For the second year, I will be voting for the ECAC Lambert Meadowlands polls.

Here is my first ballot.

The number in the (x) is if the team is ranked different in the poll than in my ballot.

FCS (UAlbany's classification)
1. New Hampshire
2. Lehigh (T2)
3. Maine (T2)
4 Delaware
5. James Madison
6. William & Mary (7)
7. Towson (6)
8. Massachusetts (NR)
9. UAlbany (NR)
10. Yale (T8)

Not on my ballot
T8. Richmond
T8. Old Dominion
T8. Harvard

Division III (RPI & Union classification)
1. Wesley (2)
2. Thomas More (3)
3. Kean (1)
4. Montclair State
5. Delaware Valley (6)
6. Johns Hopkins (8)
7. Salisbury (5)
8. Alfred (10)
9. Hobart (7)
10. St. John Fisher (NR)

Not on my ballot
9. Cortland State

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FCS Top 25 - Oct. 9

Here is my ballot for The Sports Network FCS Top 25.

The number in (x) is if there's a difference in my ballot and the poll.

UAlbany is receiving votes following its big Northeast Conference victory over Duquesne. There's a good chance I will vote for them if they take care of Robert Morris this upcoming weekend.

1. Georgia Southern
2. Northern Iowa
3. Montana State
4. North Dakota State
5. Wofford
6. New Hampshire
7. Lehigh (8)
8. Maine (12)
9. Appalachian State (7)
10. Jacksonville State (11)
11. Delaware (9)
12. Montana (14)
13. South Dakota (15)
14. Sam Houston State (10)
15. James Madison (13)
16. William & Mary
17. Old Dominion (18)
18. Towson (17)
19. Massachusetts (NR)
20. Indiana State (21)
21. Tennessee Tech (19)
22. Southern Utah (NR)
23. Sacramento State (NR)
24. Southern Illinois (NR)
25. Chattanooga (NR)

Teams in poll not on my ballot
20. Richmond
22. McNeese State
23. North Dakota
24. Alabama State
25. Jackson State

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Tuesday, October 4, 2011

RPI, Union, UAlbany football teams turn it around

Since I wrote about the local college football teams struggling, over on, Union, RPI and the University at Albany are a combined 5-1.

I did mention that was time for a turnaround, but even I'm shocked at how fast these teams have turned the corner.

I was at RPI's come-from-behind victory over Rochester on Saturday.

Man, it was cold, but the Engineers overcame an 11-point deficit to post a 28-24 victory.

UAlbany has won two in a row, including their conference opener, at St. Francis (Pa.).

The team I'm most surprised about is Union. When I wrote the above blog, the Dutchmen were 0-3.

Since then, they are 2-0 and on top of the Liberty League.

Union has a huge matchup, with Hobart this Saturday, at Frank Bailey Field.

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FCS Top 25 - Oct. 3

Here is my ballot, as the calendar has switched to October.

Remember, the number in (x) is only if there's a difference between my ballot and the overall poll.

1. Georgia Southern
2. Northern Iowa
3. Montana State
4. North Dakota State
5. Wofford
6. New Hampshire
7. Appalachian State (8)
8. James Madison (7)
9. Lehigh (10)
10. Jacksonville State (12)
11. William & Mary (9)
12. Maine (19)
13. Montana (16)
14. Delaware (13)
15. South Dakota (18)
16. Sam Houston State (11)
17. McNeese State (15)
18. Indiana State (17)
19. Old Dominion (21)
20. Massachusetts (NR)
21. Towson (25)
22. Southern Utah
23. Sacramento State (NR)
24. Tennessee Tech (23)
25. Duquesne (NR)

Teams in poll, but not in my ballot
14. Richmond
20. Southern Illinois
24. Chattanooga Mocs

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