Happy Friday! The weekend is here and so are a number of huge games in UMass Athletics. It all starts tonight as the Mass Attack hosts third nationally ranked Northeastern, so be sure to fill the Mullins Center! It should be a good one! Saturday features men's basketball at No. 10 Xavier while on Sunday, hockey plays at Maine. Both games will be televised on ESPNU. This JTAM includes some soccer news to warm you up in the heart of winter.
Slipping under the radar is men's soccer goalie Zack Simmons, who won't be going far. He was invited to New England Revolution camp, which begins on Feb. 2 in Foxboro.
Check out this article on the University of Maine hockey goalies as they prepare for their slate of games, including UMass on Sunday on ESPNU.
USCHO has a preview of this weekend's Hockey East games, which includes Northeastern at UMass (Fri.) asnd UMass at Maine (Sun.).
In keeping with a hockey theme, former UMass hockey All-American Jon Quick has continued to impress in the National Hockey League. Last night, he started his third consecutive game and topped the Chicago Blackhawks, one of the NHL's best teams, 5-2. He finished with 28 saves on 30 shots. His season stats are as follows: 7-5-0 record, 2.42 GAA, and .918 save percentage. He was recalled from Manchester (AHL) on Dec. 16 on "emergency conditions" and has been in the NHL ever since.
Mark Blaudschun of the Boston Globe writes about Saturday's opponent, the Xavier Muskateers.
Matt Vautour of the Daily Hampshire Gazette has this story on men's basketball's Doug Wiggins, who has returned to practice.
This piece rates the NBA's top shot blockers and lists former UMass star Marcus Camby as No. 2. Here's one highlight: "He's one of the greatest shot blockers this league has ever seen."
The Daily Collegian previews women's basketball's home game vs. Saint Louis on Saturday.
The Collegian has this preview of swimming and diving as it is set to face Fordham. The paper also ran weekend previews of: track and skiing.
UMassAthletics.com Feature To Check Out: With so many games coming up, how are you going to keep track of all the games? I have the answer for you. Just check out the webcasts page by clicking here! It includes media information for the weekend (Gametracker, Watch Live, Listen Live, and more!)
Don't miss this: Games, games, and more games! The weekend schedule is packed. Hockey hosts Northeastern Friday and heads to Orono to play Maine Sunday. Men's basketball looks to even its conference record at .500 at Xavier on Saturday. Women's basketball hosts Saint Louis Saturday. Not to mention track, skiing, swimming, and tennis (which opens its season on Sunday vs. Long Island).
Jeff Thomas has a great story in the Springfield Republican talking about how UMass players feel teammate Tony Gaffney should be the A-10 Defensive Player of the Year.
Former UMass star and member of the 1960s All-Time Team Ray Ellerbrook is undergoing treatment for cancer. The Daily Hampshire Gazette has a story on the Look Park executive director and how the staff at the Park are looking to help Ellerbrook. Donations to the Ray Ellerbrook Fund for Men's Cancers may be sent to Cancer Connection, P.O. Box 60452, Florence, MA 01062.
Speaking of Xavier, the Musketeers won their ninth game in a row last night, dumping Charlotte, 69-47, in snowy Cincinnati. No. 10 Xavier held the 49ers to 13 first-half points on 16.7 percent shooting.
UMassAthletics.com Feature To Check Out: If you are a big UMass fan, the Desktop Communicator is for you! Its a FREE software program that provides a higher level of interaction with the team website. This streamlined program will not slow down your computer's speed or hinder performance.
BUY TICKETS: Hockey Vs. N'Eastern (Fri.) | WBB Vs. Saint Louis (Sat.)
What a winter season this has been in New England! Another storm is on our doorstep, so be careful if you must travel today. Wednesday's Weekly Sports Luncheon, has been cancelled as the campus is closed. Big news from JTAM today brings a preliminary list of former basketball players who will be on hand for the 1990s Celebration on Feb. 8 vs. Saint Joseph's. This JTAM also has a variety of stories, including many on former head football coach Mark Whipple taking a job at the University of Miami.
Looking forward to 1990s night, here is a list of confirmed players who are expecting to attend the UMass-Saint Joseph's game on Feb. 8 and take part in the halftime ceremony: Craig Berry, Ross Burns, Charlton Clarke, Ted Cottrell, Dana Dingle, Jason Germain, Rafer Giles, Will Herndon, Derek Kellogg, Lari Ketner, Chris Kirkland, Jim McCoy, Edgar and Giddel Padilla (who are flying in from Puerto Rico), Kennard Robinson, John Tate, Tyrone Weeks and Mike Williams. More are expected, so keep checking back to JTAM for more updates.
Check out this great article from the Daily Collegian recapping the Amherst Survival Center's first annual `Empty Bowls Dinner' in which men's basketball coach Derek Kellogg was one of many volunteers.
The Collegian has this preview of Friday's hockey game vs. first-place Northeastern.
UMassAthletics.com Feature To Check Out: February is right around the corner! And February brings a ton of promotions at games, including a slight twist from hockey's usual White Out Night. Men's basketball has a ton of great promotions and giveaways as well. To see them all, please click here!
Don't miss this: Wednesday brings the Weekly Sports Luncheon (1009 Campus Center), but its status is dependant on whether or not the University is closed, so be sure to check back to UMassAthletics.com throughout the morning for updates.
Tuesday, Jan. 27
So its still cold, and snow is on the way here in New England. Enjoy the day and check out various articles on JTAM about UMass basketball and other sports. There are also updates on UMass alums Stephane Lasme, Gary Forbes, Brandon London and James Ihedigbo and former football head coach Mark Whipple, who was named the offensive coordinator at the University of Miami.
Listen to the Bud Light Coaches Show with Toot Cahoon - 7 PM - Hangar Bar and Grill
If you watched last night's Oklahoma-Oklahoma State basketball game on ESPN's Big Monday, you heard numerous references to UMass as former Minuyeman head coach Travis Ford and his Cowboys lost to the Sooners, 89-81.
Former UMass All-American Stephane Lasme continues to star in Serbia for Partizan in the Euroleague. Lasme is pictured in the release after beating Moscow's CSKA in a 66-63 upset over the reigning Euroleague Champion. Lasme is quoted: "We went out there to give our best in Moscow, fearless and without any calculations. We were absolute underdogs, no one had expected us to do anything, but that only aided us because there was no usual pressure ahead of a big game like this. Honestly, I am really glad we eventually broke everyone's hearts." Here is more from the Moscow News on the upset win. In 10 Euroleague games, Lasme is averaging 9.6 points, 6.8 rebounds and 1.9 blocked shots.
In his two games with the Tulsa 66ers, Gary Forbes has maintained his 16.5 scoring average after being traded from the Sioux Falls Skyforce, where he also averaged 16.5 PPG.
Former UMass head coach Mark Whipple was named the offensive coordinator at Miami (Fla.). He will be in the same league as the coach that succeeded him at UMass, Don Brown, who took over as the defensive coordinator at Maryland earlier in January. In 2009, Miami and Maryland will not play as the ACC has an unbalanced schedule between the Atlantic and Coastal divisions.
The Palm Beach Post reports, Brandon London will return to the Miami Dolphins. He told WQAM Radio he will be back to sign a contract when he returns from a visit home in Virginia.
Former UMass football star James Ihedigbo continues to take part in New York Jets activities in the off season. On Tuesday, he will be at the Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital of New York Presbyterian, Columbia University Medical Center, located at 3959 Broadway in Washington Heights, between 11:00 am and 1:00 pm. for an event to benefit the Valerie Fund. He wil be joined by country singing sensation Coffey Anderson, a range of entertainers and athletes are scheduled to perform, including NFL players Chansi Stuckey (NY Jets), Kareem McKenzie (NY Giants), Mathius Kiwanuka (NY Giants), Anthony Fasano (Miami Dolphins) and Nickelodeon actress Katie Adler. For further information, the hospital's main phone number is 212-305-KIDS.
The Vermont student newspaper, the Cynic, has a story on the UMass-Vermont two-game set in Burington over the weekend.
UMassAthletics.com Feature To Check Out:: You might be looking for a new job at UMass. Check out the link to job opportunities on the website.
Don't miss this: Check the video player on the front page of UMassAthletics.com for a great feature on Ricky Harris, showcasing his crib from CBS3 Springfield.
Monday, Jan. 26
Welcome back to school if you are here on campus at UMass. The spring semester begins today so the campus will be buzzing and busy. It was a busy weekend for the UMass athletes as all winter sports were in action. It was a tough week for the basketball teams both losing and the hockey team posting a 0-1-1 record at Vermont. The swimming squads had mostly successful meets as the men swept BC and Colgate with the women topping BC and falling to the Raiders. The track & field teams were solid in Boston and the ski teams showed well in New Hampshire. Check out JTAM for updates on many teams.
Former UMass football head coach Mark Whipple has a lot of connections to this year's Super Bowl pitting Pittsburgh and Arizona which is featured in the Arizona Republic. Whipple is currently an assistant with the Philadelphia Eagles, who were eliminated by the Cardinals in the NF Championship Game. He talks regularly with Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. He worked alongside the Cardinals' Ken Whisenhunt and Russ Grimm in Pittsburgh when the Steelers won the Super Bowl three years ago.