Saturday, July 31, 2010

The 2010-11 Women's Basketball Schedule

On Friday, head basketball coach Karen Middleton announced WCU's basketball schedule for the upcoming season.  The 29 game schedule includes 15 home dates, consisting of a 20 game conference schedule (10 home./10 away) and a very ambitious out of conference set of 9 games.

Non-conference home games include Richmond, East Carolina, Florida State, Charlotte and Colorado State.  Road non-conference games are at North Carolina, Georgia State, James Madison, and mountain rival UNC Asheville.  This is a pretty impressive out of conference schedule for the young Catamounts.

"Our schedule includes eight teams that made postseason appearances last year, which will prepare us for a tough Southern Conference slate," Middleton said. "I'm very excited about our team's challenging schedule this season and the number of great home match-ups we will have for our fans at the Ramsey Center."

Let's support the Catamounts at the Ramsey Center like never before.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

WCU Quarterback Situtation

The Asheville Citizen-Times reported today that Zac Brindise, a reserve quarterback from South Carolina, is in the process of transferring to the Catamounts.  Brindise is a redshirt junior, from Fort Myers, FL. 

Earlier in the week, Coach Wagner confirmed that UConn transfer quarterback Casey Turner has departed from the team for "personal" reasons, thus ending speculation about his absence on the team roster.  Pierce College quarterback transfer Matt Wabby enrolled in summer school and has been participating in summer conditioning drills with the team.

With incoming true freshman quarterback Brandon Pechloff (6-7, 220), and last years starting QB Zack Jaynes returning (hopefully completely healthy from last season's injury) the Catamounts will have the depth of 4 quarterbacks on the roster. 

I expect to see Pechloff redshirt this season, as I believe the coaching staff sees him as the QB of the future for the Cats. 

Greg Holland called to the Majors by the KC Royals

What does every kid who ever picked up a bat and ball dream of? Playing in the big leagues of course.  Well that dream is coming true for former Catamount right-handed reliever Greg Holland.  He has been called up to the Major Leagues by the Kansas City Royals. 

Holland was drafted after his junior season as a 10th-round pick by Kansas City in the 2007 draft, and spent this season in Triple-A ball on the west coast. Greg is the first former Cat baseball player to be called up so far this season, but he is the 9th over all to make a Major League roster.   Currently there are 8 other former Catamounts playing professional baseball at various levels. and dreaming the same dream Greg did.  Good Luck to Greg and all the other Catamounts trying to make that dream come true.   

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Cats will face the Triple Option 3 times

In the 2010-11 football season, the Catamounts will face the triple option not just once, but a total of three times, this season.  Wofford, Georgia Southern, and The Citadel will all three field triple option offenses this season.  This means the Cats will face the triple option for 1/3 of their conference games.

With Paul Johnson's success at GSU, Navy and now Georgia Tech, the TO seems to  be making a pretty successful comeback, certainly in the Southern Conference.  While Wofford has used the triple option for a while, Jeff Monken was hired from Georgia Tech to return Johnson's triple option back to Georgia Southern.

While GSU went to Georgia Tech for it's new coach,  Kevin Higgins, of the Citadel, went closer to home.  He went to in-state rival Wofford and hired Josh Conklin.  Higgins believes he can duplicate Wofford's  recruiting success by turning to the triple option offense.  “In the triple option, you can recruit players that aren't being recruited by other programs.  There are a lot more option teams at the high school level." said Higgins. "There are a lot of option quarterbacks out there who don't have a home.”

Thought of as old fashioned, or high schoolish - it does work, especially when teams only see the option once or twice a season.  “It's a great offense,” Wofford 's Coach Ayers said. “If you've got a good quarterback and a good fullback, then you'll have a chance."

Monken said "It's not a magic wand. It's not a magic offense”  "You have to execute." he said.

The big question - Will GSU and The Citadel execute ?

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Showing Support for the Gulf Coast

During the 2010 football season, all Southern Conference football teams will show support of the Gulf Coast region by wearing a helmet decal with the initials "GC". Over 170 football players, from all 9 football playing schools, come from states effected by the oil spill.  Use of the decal was approved by the NCAA's rules committee.

Monday, July 26, 2010

2010 SoCon Coaches and Media Polls & Pre-season All Conference Teams

The 2010 SoCon Coaches and Media polls were released today by the Southern Conference.  Not a lot of surprises, unless you didn't expect WCU to be picked last or next to last.    While I know the football Catamounts must prove themselves on the playing field to gain some respect, I did however expect to be picked above the Citadel and Georgia Southern in both pre-season polls.  

The media poll of course picked ASU first, and Elon second, with WCU 8th and the Citadel last.  
  1. Appalachian State (22)     
  2. Elon (6)                                 
  3. Furman (1)                             
  4. Chattanooga                           
  5. Wofford                                 
  6. Samford (1)                             
  7. Georgia Southern                   
  8. Western Carolina                    
  9. The Citadel                             
The coaches poll also picked ASU first and Elon second, but flipped WCU and the Citadel in the last two spots of the poll.
  1. Appalachian State (7)                
  2. Elon (2)                                    
  3. Furman                                    
  4. Samford                                   
  5. Chattanooga                             
  6. Wofford                                    
  7. Georgia Southern                      
  8. The Citadel                               
  9. Western Carolina                
There is only minor differences between the two polls in the heart of the order, with Furman picked as #3 on both polls and Georgia Southern #7 in both.  Samford, Chattanooga, and Wofford are basically a toss up in the center of the order.  

On the SoCon Pre-season All-Conference teams Western has three selections: 
Mitchell Bell - Defense (1st team)
Marquell Pittman - Offense (2d team)
Blake Bostic - Special team- PK (2d team)

My Congratulations to all three.  

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Catamount Football Game Start Times

This weeks release of Furman's home game starting times finalized the 2010 Catamount schedule of game start times.

Sat., Sep. 4......North Carolina State.........Raleigh, N.C................6:00 p.m. ET
Sat., Sep. 11.....Tusculum.........................Cullowhee, N.C............6:00 p.m. ET
Sat., Sep. 18.....Gardner-Webb.................Boiling Springs, N.C.... 6:00 p.m. ET
Sat., Sep. 25.....Chattanooga...................Cullowhee, N.C.............6:00 p.m. ET
Sat., Oct. 2.......The Citadel.....................Charleston, S.C.............1:00 p.m. ET
Sat., Oct. 9...... Samford.........................Cullowhee, N.C..............3:00 p.m. ET
Sat., Oct. 16.....Wofford..........................Spartanburg, S.C...........1:00 p.m. ET
Sat., Oct. 23.....Appy State......................Cullowhee, N.C.............3:00 p.m. ET
Sat., Oct. 30.....Open
Sat., Nov. 6......Furman...........................Greenville, S.C..............2:00 p.m. ET
Sat., Nov. 13.....Georgia Southern............Cullowhee, N.C.............3:00 p.m. ET
Sat., Nov. 20.....Elon...............................Elon, N.C......................3:00 p.m. ET

Friday, July 23, 2010

Basketball All-Star Games Update

Two WCU 2010 men's basketball signees recently participated in regional All-Star Games. Preston Ross played in the East-West All-Star game held in Greensboro, N.C., on July 19, and Brandon Boggs played in the South Carolina North-South All-Star game played in North Myrtle Beach, on March 20, 2010.

Ross scored 19 points for the East squad, and the incoming freshman from Fayetteville was the second leading scorer in the game. The West squad won the All-Star game 99-98.

Boggs' 24 points were a game-high in the SC North-South All-Star game. Boggs played on the North squad which lost 113-104 in overtime.

Two women's baskeball recruits (Kristen Lyon and Rena Wakama) also played in the NC East-West All-Star game in Greensboro, NC. Both Lyon & Wakama played for the East squad.

Western's Athletic Hall of Fame

On July 20, 2010, Western Carolina University announced its 2010 Athletics Hall of Fame class. Included are: Tom Bodine, Tobe Childers, Kerry Hayes, Anquell McCollum, Gaston Seal and Rebecca Twiner Hastings, all to be inducted during "Hall of Fame Football Weekend" November 12-14, 2010.

Tobe Childers (Football, 1957-60)
Gaston Seal (Men's Basketball, 1960-63)
Tom Bodine (Football, 1991-94)
Kerry Hayes (Football, 1991-94)
Anquell McCollum (Men's Basketball, 1992-96)
Rebecca Twiner Hastings (Women's Golf, 2000-04)

Read more about the this year's Hall of Fame inductees on the Catamount Sports Forum: