Saturday, April 23, 2011

Happy Easter!

GMU’s Larranaga Headed To Maimi

(Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

Former George Mason coach Tom Larranaga is the new coach of the Miami Hurricanes.

Larragana  accepted the Hurricanes job after 14 years at George Mason, including an improbable run to the Final Four in 2006. Larranaga met with his George Mason players Friday to say goodbye, then flew to Miami.

Larranaga, 61, said he decided to make the move because of the chance to coach in the ACC, which he considers the best basketball league in the country.

“I am very excited to be here,” he shouted with pep-rally enthusiasm at the start of his news conference. “It’s kind of like the last piece in a coaching career to finalize what I hope to be about.”

Another lure was that three of Larranaga’s siblings live in Florida. Their father grew up in Key West, and their grandfather was from Cuba. Larranaga spent summers in Florida growing up, and he and his wife have a second home in Sarasota.

“I feel like I’m back home at the University of Miami,” he said.

To read more, click here

Wake Forest’s Stewart Transfers To USC

Ari Stewart
Forward Ari Stewart has transferred to Southern California after two seasons at Wake Forest.

Stewart averaged 8.5 points and 4.4 rebounds for the Demon Deacons last season, starting 16 games as a sophomore swingman. A year earlier, he led ACC freshmen in 3-point shooting, making 37.1 percent.

Stewart was a touted high school prospect out of Marietta, Ga., in 2009.

UNC head coach Kevin O’Neill expects Stewart to improve his game while sitting out next season as a redshirt, saying Stewart has a tremendous upside. Stewart will have two seasons of eligibility left beginning in 2012-13.

Football Off-Season – It’s Crime Time!

Former Virginia star cornerback Chris Cook became the tenth NFL player arrested during the pro football labor dispute.  The now Minnesota Viking was arrested on suspicion of brandishing a gun during a fight with another man on March 12.

Cook, 24, was held in his home town of Lynchburg, Va., 179 miles southwest of Washington, D.C., shortly after the incident at approximately 5:30 pm local time according to police.

The Vikings selected the former University of Virginia star with the 34th pick in the 2010 draft.

Cook played just six games during a rookie season that was plagued with knee injuries. His season ended in December when the Vikings placed him on injured reserve.

Cook claims it was all a “misunderstanding” since nothing promotes better “understanding” than waving your gun around. 

Pictures Of The Day

In this handout photograph provided by the Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) ASP world number three Jordy Smith of South Africa surfs during the Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach surfing event at Bells Beach near Torquay, south of Melbourne on April 23, 2011.  (Photo by Kristin Scholtz/ASP/AFP PHOTO/HO)
In this Jan. 27, 1970 file photo, NFL commissioner Pete Rozelle points to Pittsburgh Steelers and their No. 1 selection, Terry Bradshaw, Louisiana tech quarterback, at the pro football draft of college players in New York. John Elway, Troy Aikman and Peyton Manning(notes) were far more dazzling. Earl Campbell was far more feared. Yet teams draft players they think will help them win championships. Bradshaw, selected No. 1 overall, guided the Steelers to four Super Bowl titles and was the MVP in two of those championship games.
Supporters of Japan's Vegalta Sendai celebrate their team's victory over Kawasaki Frontale in their J-League football match in Kawasaki on April 23, 2011. Earthquake-hit Vegalta Sendai defeated Kawasaki Frontare 2-1, as J-League resumed for the first time since the March 11 earthquake.  (AFP PHOTO / JIJI PRESS)
The referee puts the pink ball into place prior to Mark Williams of Wales stepping up to break in the round two game against Jamie Cope of Engalnd on day seven of the Betfred.com World Snooker Championship at The Crucible Theatre on April 22, 2011 in Sheffield, England.  (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images Europe)
A gaucho becomes an owcho, courtesy of an ornery, unbroken horse during the celebration of "Criolla" (Creole) Week in Montevideo. Bet you didn't know that Gauchos from all over Uruguay come to Montevideo during Creole Week to compete for the award of best rider.  (Photo by Andre Stapff/Reuters)

Friday, April 22, 2011

Quick Baseball Update

(Photo courtesy of Virginia Sports)
Six ACC baseball teams remain ranked among the top 25 of at least one major  poll, led by top-ranked Virginia.

Georgia Tech is ranked as high as No. 9, Florida State and North Carolina as high as No. 10, Miami as high as No. 20 and Clemson as high as No. 21.

The Wahoos are 38-3 overall.

Look for more during the ACC tourney and the College World Series.

GMU’s Larranga Headed To Miami?

(Creative Services Photo)
According to the Washington Post:

George Mason Coach Jim Larranga is expected to meet with University of Miami officials about its men’s basketball coaching vacancy on Friday, two sources with knowledge of the situation said late Thursday.

Larranaga had not accepted the job as of late Thursday. Although the sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitive nature of the topic, did not believe Larranaga had decided to leave, they thought the coach was leaning that way. George Mason’s players were expecting their coach to leave, a third source said.

Since the season ended, Larranaga and George Mason have been engaged in talks concerning a contract extension, university officials said. His current deal ends after the 2015-16 season. He also had conversations regarding improved contracts for his staff, the sources said.

To read more, click here.

The Streak: The Last Time North Carolina Beat Clemson In Basketball In Chapel Hill…

(Shawn Rocco/Raleigh News & Observer)
Woody Durham did the play-by-play.

The Streak:  Game 55, January 18, 2011 – North Carolina 75, Clemson 65.

Now after 40 years and 1,800 Tar Heel football and basketball games, Durham decided it was time to go.

"I actually thought about this decision after the 2009-10 season," the UNC icon said in front of a packed room at the Smith Center that included coaches Roy Williams, Butch Davis and Sylvia Hatchell as well as officials from North Carolina, Duke, Wake Forest and the ACC. "I hope the Tar Heel listeners didn't notice, but there were too many times after various broadcasts when I wasn't pleased with my level of presentation. ... I thought I would work hard to be better in the 2010-2011 season, which I did. But again, my presentation was not always what I wanted."

Durham was under contract until 2013.

Durham, 69, grew up in Albemarle, NC and began his broadcasting career at age 16 at WZKY radio.
He graduated from North Carolina in 1963, and in 1971 he became the voice behind the Tar Heels.

He worked with four men's basketball coaches, six football coaches and four athletic directors calling 23 bowl games, 13 Final Fours and six basketball title games. He missed only 14 games in 40 years.

Durham’s retirement leaves Maryland’s Johnny Holiday as the senior announcer in the ACC. Holiday has been calling Terps games since 1979.  According to Wikipedia, his exact age is “unknown.”

To see a photo gallery of Durham's career, click here. 

Football Crime: ‘Tis The Season

Oh yes, it’s the off-season, it’s crime time.

Duke announced it has dismissed rising junior Tyree Glover from the program for conduct unbecoming of a member of the program.

Glover, of Crescent City, Fla., was arrested Tuesday and charged with trafficking cocaine. He is being held in Durham County jail and a bond has been set at $500,000.

Coach David Cutcliffe announced his decision to dismiss Glover in a statement on Wednesday.

Glover, a 6-foot-1, 255-pound reserve linebacker, played in 23 games in two seasons. He collected 20 tackles and was listed as the team's top will linebacker during spring football.

ACC Football Links

Logan Thomas
We know you pigskin fanatics are jonesin’ – here’s some weekend reading via Heather Dinich’s ESPN ACC football blog.

+Virginia Tech quarterback Logan Thomas is farther along than QB coach Mike O'Cain thought he would be.

+Hokies receiver Jarrett Boykin offered some rare glowing words for his QB.

+Georgia Tech's spring is coming to a close, but how much better did the Jackets get? Hard to tell.

+Who needs a big summer the most at Clemson? Start with quarterback Tajh Boyd.

+There were a few lessons learned in Tallahassee this spring.

+Is Jimbo Fisher winning the state's popularity contest?

+Former FSU quarterback Christian Ponder is good enough, but do NFL teams think he's healthy enough?

+Will Muschamp got in a dig at Miami. Gotta love the hate in the state.

+Duke will add five members to its Hall of Fame.

+NC State coach Tom O'Brien has no problems talking about Russell Wilson, but it's Mike Glennon's job now.

Tajh Boyd and Dabo Swinney
+Georgia Tech linebacker Jeremiah Attaochu has been one of the most improved playersfor the Jackets this spring, and he's got an interesting family history.

+Never have so many quality quarterbacks emerged from the state of Virginia than this year's class.

+Virginia Tech receiver Danny Coale is willing to try to help the Hokies as a punter. Hey, he's got just as much game experience as the other candidates -- none.

+Wake Forest coach Jim Grobe has been politely pleased with his staff changes this spring.

+There were winners and losers on Miami's final depth chart of the spring.

+Andrew Jones has 10 important questions and answers from ACC spring ball.

Pictures Of The Day

Um…could you get an Australian sponsor?  Well…No.  The Team New Zealand Americas Cup 45ft catamaran sails in the Waitemata Harbour after an Emirates Team New Zealand press conference on April 21, 2011 in Auckland, New Zealand. Team New Zealand formally announced today that they will be challenging in the 2013 America's Cup in San Francisco.  (Photo by Sandra Mu/Getty Images AsiaPac)   
No, this is not a scene from Libya, Egypt or Tunisia, it’s just some happy soccer fans…We think.  Fans cheer Real Madrid players on an open-top bus upon at Plaza Cibeles on April 21, 2011 in Madrid, Spain. Real beat Barcelona 1-0 in the Copa del Rey final in Valencia's Mestalla stadium on April 20. (Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images Europe)
Owen Wright of Australia competes during round tow of the rip Curl Pro at Bells Beach near Torquay, south of Melbourne.  (Photo by Kirstin Scholtz/AFP/Getty Images)

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

We Are Virginia Tech

We are Virginia Tech. We are sad today and we will be sad for quite awhile. WE are not moving on, we are embracing our mourning.

We are Virginia Tech. We are strong enough to know when to cry and sad enough to know we must laugh again. We are Virginia Tech.

We do not understand this tragedy. We know we did not deserve it but neither does a child in Africa dying of AIDS, but neither do the invisible children walking the night to avoid being captured by a rogue army. Neither does the baby elephant watching his community be devastated for ivory; neither does the Appalachian infant in the killed in the middle of the night in his crib in the home his father built with his own hands being run over by a boulder because the land was destabilized.

No one deserves a tragedy.

We are Virginia Tech. The Hokie Nation embraces our own with open heart and hands to those who offer their hearts and minds. We are strong and brave and innocent and unafraid. We are better than we think, not quite what we want to be. We are alive to the imagination and the possibility we will continue to invent the future through our blood and tears, through all this sadness.

We are the Hokies.

We will prevail, we will prevail.

We are Virginia Tech.

– Nikki Giovanni, April 17, 2007.

Tar Heel Mom Wins Again, Ups Bankroll To $577,392

Tar Heel Mom winning at Saratoga. (Walter Kobbe)
Tar Heel Mom beat Hour Glass by 31/2 lengths Sunday in the $75,000 The Harmony Lodge Handicap for fillies and mares at Gulfstream Park.

Tar Heel Mom, a 6-year-old mare by Flatter trained by Stanley Hough and ridden by Alex Solis, ran 6 furlongs over the sloppy track in 1:09.97 and paid $3.40, $2.80 and $2.10.

Tar Heel Mom has nine victories in 24 starts and lifetime earnings of $577,392.

The victory was Solis' fourth of the day. He also won with Southafrican Queen in the fourth, Datts Cool in the fifth and Mount Holiday in the ninth.

The horse named Blue Devil Mom has won $4.


*Items in italics may not be true.

Pictures Of The Day

A paraglider flies in front of the Alps with Germany’s highest mountain Zugspitze (2,962 metres) near Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Southern Germany. (Photo by Mathias Schrader/AP)
Saddle bronc rider Heith DeMoss of Heflin, Louisiana, dressed as a character from the movie Avatar, competes in the Wild Ride at the 2011 Red Bluff Round-Up at the Tehama District Fairgrounds in Red Bluff, California.  (Photo by Matt Cohen/Southcreek Global/ZUMAPRESS.com)
President Barack Obama (C) poses for a group picture with members of the Air Force Academy football team, including defensive back Reggie Rembert on his left, fullback Jared Tew on his right, and head coach Troy Calhoun, right on first row, during a Rose Garden event April 18, 2011 at the White House in Washington, DC. President Obama hosted the Air Force Academy football team to honor their winning of the Commander-in-Chief Trophy in 2010.  (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Monday, April 18, 2011

North Carolina Pre-season #1 For 2011-12 NCAA Men's Basketball

(Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Yeah, we know it’s just a few weeks past end of the 2010-2011 season, but with Harrison Barnes, John Henson and Tyler Zeller staying in school, the Tar Heels are a shoe-in for the pre-season #1 as they were with a loaded squad back in 2008-2009.

This morning, Barnes made it official. 

In a statement released by UNC, Barnes said “As an 18-year-old, I'm in the early stages of my life journey.”

"I'm honored and blessed for the chance to play in the NBA. And because of my family, teachers, passion and work, I have the ultimate dream of one day playing and experiencing a fulfilling career in the NBA."

Add to that not losing any key players to the NBA or graduation, Kendall Marshall and the fourth best recruiting class that includes the son of former Tar Heel star Bob McAdoo (James), and the Heels are loaded.

It's not a good day in Durham...

To read more, click here.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

McAdoo, Rivers Shine Jordan Brand Classic

Anthony Davis (Kentucky) and James McAdoo co-MVPs. (Sporting News)
North Carolina recruit James McAdoo had 26 points and 14 rebounds and hit the clinching free throws with 1.6 seconds left to lead the East squad to a 113-109 victory over the West in the Jordan Brand Classic on Saturday night in his final basketball act before joining North Carolina's deep front line in the fall.

"High school kind of got boring. After a while it's just the same thing over and over," the 6-foot-8 Norfolk, Va., native said. "So just getting on campus there and kind of being put back at the bottom of the totem pole is just going to be get me to work harder and proving myself once again."

Duke product Austin Rivers added 16 points, six rebounds and four steals for the East, which held off a late West rally in the freewheeling high school All-Star game devoid of much defense.

ACC LAX Scoreboard

(Lloyd Fox, Baltimore Sun)
4/16/11
Johns Hopkins 12, MARYLAND 11 (OT) – Junior Joe Cummings scored four goals for the No. 4 University of Maryland men's lacrosse team, but No. 3 Johns Hopkins scored nine goals in the second half and got the game-winning goal from Kyle Wharton with just 16 seconds left in overtime to pull out a 12-11 victory in front of 8,072 at Capital One Field at Byrd Stadium Saturday night.

The Terps (8-3) took a 7-2 lead into halftime, but the Blue Jays (9-2) outscored Maryland 9-2 from the start of the third quarter to 5:43 of the fourth to take an 11-9 lead.

DUKE 13, VIRGINIA 11 – Duke University sophomore goaltender Dan Wigrizer made eight second-half saves and junior midfielder Robert Rotanz netted four second-half goals to lead the 10th-ranked Blue Devils to a 13-11 win over No. 7 Virginia. The win clinches the ACC men's lacrosse regular season title for the Blue Devils, marking the ninth overall for Duke and fifth since 2005 for the program.
(Lloyd Fox, Baltimore Sun / April 16, 2011)

Things That Make You Go…

(Ina Fassbender/Reuters)

Hmmm…

A contstant competes in the Amateur Women’s Classic Bodybuilding (and Nail Growing) competition at the FIBO 2011 in Essen, Germany.

The winner receives a life-size statue of Fingernail King Howard Hughes and an autographed picture of X-Men's Wolverine.  The runner-up gets a set of steak knives.

Pictures Of The Day

Former Tar Heel Brendan Haywood of the Dallas Mavericks gets up close and personal with the rim during Game One of the Western Conference Quarterfinals in the 2011 NBA Playoffs at eh American Airlines Center in Dallas.  The Mavs beat the Trailblazers 89-81.  (Photo by Glenn James/NBAE/Getty Images)
Nationwide Series driver Mike Wallace crashes during the Aarons 312 at the Talladega Superspeedway. (Photo by Marvin Gentry/U.S. Presswire)
Blue wide receiver Mike Shanahan is tackled by Gold linebacker Carl Fleming, Brandon Ifill and Phil Peckch during Pittsburgh’s spring football game.  (Photo by Don Wright/AP)
Jockey Joel Rosario guides Brilliant Speed (5) across the finish line to win the Grade I Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland in Lexington, Ky., Saturday, April 16, 2011. Twinspired (7) with Robby Albarado up was second, and King Congie, ridden by Rajiv Maragh was third. (Photo by Coady Photography)

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