Accompanied by KSU’s Director of AthleticsVaughn Williams and Director of Athletic Communications Al Barba, KSU football coach Brian Bohannon gave a briefing on the progression of Owls football as a guest speaker at the Georgia Sports Writer’s Association’s meeting and awards dinner, held Sunday afternoon at the Marietta Daily Journal offices.
Bohannon’s enthusiasm energized the room as he gleamed about the future of the football program, which is set to kickoff in the Fall of 2015.
“KSU is the best kept secret in the south,” Bohannon said. “When Erk Russell began his program at Georgia Southern, he had to go across the street to buy a football for a press conference. We’ve already got so much in place here.”
“The kids aren’t even asking about the weight room because everything around this campus is so exciting to them,” Bohannon said.
No, the Owls don’t have a weight room—yet. What Bohannon has learned, however, is that the 24,000 student University, featuring top-end housing, dining, and a new stadium have helped make the recruiting pitch much easier than what most start-up programs have to deal with.
“I had driven by the stadium a few times before, but never had actually been in it. Once I walked in I started getting excited, and as soon as I saw the locker room I knew this was where I wanted to be,” Bohannon said.
Bohannon said at least 25 families have visited in the past month as the staff have officially begun the recruiting process.
Freshman commits who enter next year will be redshirt freshman, while the rest of the first team will be composed of true freshman in the 2015 season and walkons. The team will hold open tryouts to get current students involved, and will begin practicing next Fall.
“It’s two years away, but man it’s going to be here before you know it,” Bohannon said.
Part of Bohannon’s pitch to prospective players will be his unique offense, which will be an evolution of the triple-option— the offense Bohannon learned as a 17-year disciple of former Georgia Southern and current Georgia Tech head coach, Paul Johnson.
When asked about pitching the idea of a niche offense during the recruiting process, Bohannon described a more reactionary approach to building the system.
“We’re going to run the usual under-center, triple-option,” Bohannaon said. “But, we’re also going to be in the gun. It’ll be more of a pistol type attack.”
“Whatever our guy is more comfortable in, that’s what we’ll do,” Bohannon said.
As far as the defense is concerned, the plan is to run a 3-4/4-2-5 hybrid. Bohannon said the defensive coordinator has already been hired, but the announcement will not come until later this month.
Grant Chestnut was hired on April 16 to be the offensive coordinator and offensive line coach. Other hires include Shane Bowen (assistant coach), Tim Glanton (A-backs coach), Brett Gilliland (quarterbacks, B-backs coach) and Liam Klein (assistant coach).
Williams insisted that there have been no further developments on what conference affiliation the Owls will make by the time kickoff comes around, other than the fact the Southern Conference has been scrapped as a possibility.
“We just are focused on finding a place to play football,” Williams said. “We’re also very happy with the Atlantic Sun Conference; it has some great athletes.”
KSU has seen much success in the A-Sun, and Williams indicated that the plan is to implement football as an associate member to a football conference. The A-Sun currently does not sponsor football.
Conference possibilities that were mentioned include the Ohio Valley, Big South and Colonial Athletic Association. KSU’s rival, Mercer, which begins play this fall, will join the Southern Conference along with East Tennessee State, which is re-starting its program.
Bohannon doesn’t see the team trying to make a quick jump up the ladder, either. Georgia State, which began its program just three seasons ago, is set to play at the FBS level this season as a member of the Sun Belt. Georgia Southern is also beginning play as a Sun Belt member in 2014.
Bohannon said KSU is more focused on finding success at the FCS level.
“We have no vision other than being the best FCS team we can be,” Bohannon said.
If Atlanta Hawks general manager Danny Ferry does his job right, the city of Atlanta will finally have three professional sports teams it can be proud of, joining the Braves and Falcons.
Ferry, who joined the organization last year, coasted through a buffer season in 2012-13. Unloading Joe Johnson, who had one of the most absurd contracts in NBA history, freed the Hawks from a financial choke-hold that arguably prevented them from escalating to a championship level in the past five seasons.
The Hawks entered last season with an odd-ball cast and crew, consisting of multiple players with expiring contracts, including the polarizing
Despite having a transitional roster on hand, Ferry still let go of head coach Larry Drew after the Hawks finished 44-38 in the regular season and fell to the Indiana Pacers in the first-round of the playoffs.
Expectations weren’t too high for the Hawks—at least they shouldn’t have been for fans. Ferry had built a solid reputation while working in the front office in San Antonio, who’s team is once again competing in the NBA Finals.
His hiring brought an immediate sigh or relief and excitement to fans who were getting tired of former general manager Rick Sund, who was the mind responsible for Johnson’s mega-deal.
However, many message boards or radio call-ins during the season exposed a breed of fans who were still distraught with the B-level of the Hawks franchise; the team is always just good enough to reach the playoffs, but dysfunctional enough to embarrass itself on national television.
It’s shocking that Drew was let go, but equally inviting that Ferry has brought in a former co-worker in Mike Budenholzer, who previously worked as an assistant coach for the Spurs.
Familiarity and stability in the front office is obviously the driving force of this change, more than the fact that Drew wasn’t doing his job. In fact, knowledgeable basketball fans should have figured out by now: Smith is an uncoachable player, but the rest of the team overachieved in 2012.
Everyone involved with the organization knew the 2012 team was full of moving pieces, and that there wasn’t a lot on the line. Therefore, Drew’s firing was seemingly already in the cards. This move was just another part of Ferry’s process to build a strong foundation.
Ferry’s next responsibility will be bringing in a player—or two—who will bring immediate national interest to Atlanta. With the amount of cap space the Hawks will have at their disposal thanks to the contracts that are coming off the books, Ferry will have just enough cash to pull a blockbuster move off.
There’s obviously already a lot of internal chatter about the prospects of the NBA environment changing for the better. The Hawks possibly violated a tampering rule when a letter blast to prospective season ticket holders read, “Player interest is skyrocketing as the possibilities of landing Chris Paul or Dwight Howard become more and more of a reality.”
The blast was immediately defended by team president Bob Williams, but there’s no doubt Atlanta will be a top suitor for Paul, who’s in a rut with the Clippers, and Howard, who the Hawks reportedly pursued last offseason.
Howard, an Atlanta native, has been a polarizing figure who has drawn character comparisons to Smith, but those who see the glass half-full believe the addition of Howard could re-ignite a fire under Smith’s feet that could brew a new contract for him as well.
Nevertheless, the Hawks finally are no longer weighed down by a hyper-maxed contract, a general manager who seemingly never understood his team needed a big man, nor a disconnect between management and coach.
The existing relationship between Ferry and Budenholzer have already ensured newfound stability. The amount of cash the team will have this offseason inevitably ensures a signing that will create a buzz.
It’s hard to believe, but the Hawks could create just as much noise this offseason as the Falcons have in the past few years, as well as the Braves.
There’s no doubt the Hawks have impressed since 2007, when they began their six-year streak of making the postseason.
But, finally, we’re seeing this team actually willing to take the next step. Hopefully the days of Atlanta teams being ‘just good enough, but still miserably bad when it counts’ are over.
It’s hard to believe fans here could very soon feel spoiled. Oh, how the times are changing.
KSU starting pitcher Ste- phen Janas was drafted in the Major League Baseball First- Year Player Draft over the weekend, and he won’t have to pack his bags.
Janas, who helped the Owls to the Atlantic Sun Champi- onship game for the second straight season, was selected by the Atlanta Braves as the 193rd overall pick (sixth round) on Friday.
The Marietta native finished his junior season with a 1.14 ERA, which was fifth lowest in the nation, but that average was below 1.00 for the majority of the 2012-13 campaign which helped him become a finalist for the College Baseball Hall of Fame National Pitcher of the Year Award.
His 55 strikeouts and 9-1 record landed him on the All-Atlantic Sun Conference first team.
As a sophomore, Janas com- piled a record of 2-1 with a 3.31 ERA before suffering an injury that limited him to just seven starts. He struck out 37 and walked just nine in 37 innings.
Janas was the fifth player of 39 taken by the Braves, includ- ing the general manager’s son, Kyle Wren, and current Brave Jason Heyard’s brother, Jacob.
Janas was one of four KSU pitchers drafted, including Kevin McCoy (Mariners), Alan Busenitz (Angels of Anaheim) and Travis Dean (Rangers).
McCoy, a junior from Gaines- ville, Fla., made 14 appearances last season and struck out 23 in 20 innings.
Busenitz, a redshirt senior from Athens, compiled a 3.03 ERA over 35 innings of relief. Dean started 13 games and compiled 46 strikeouts in
On March 28, KSU officially introduced Brian Bohannon as the school’s first head football coach.
So, who’s this Bohannon guy? If you have not heard the name much in the past, you’re not to blame. Bohannon served the past five seasons as the quarterback coach at Georgia Tech. In fact, he’s spent the past 17 years under the wing of triple-option connoisseur Paul Johnson.
There’s no doubt Bohannon did a great job on the flats. He helped guys like Josh Nesbitt, who was recruited to be a pocket passer for the Yellow Jackets under Chan Gailey, and Tevin Washington into fantastic executors of the complicated triple-option system.
Unfortunately, there’s not much flash and dash that comes with a quarterback who runs that type of offensive system. While the triple-option offense is spectacular when ran correctly, Johnson’s inability to woo local players became evident as Tech’s talent dropped off in recent years.
This has led many to believe the triple-option is inherently horrible for recruiting. I adamantly defend my stance that Georgia Tech will be stuck under a low ceiling as long as Johnson is head coach. That system simply cannot leverage a brand against what other powerhouse teams have.
Running a triple-option for a mid-major team in a non- football area and winning seven games a year means job security and a rather original brand. Running a triple-option in the heart of Atlanta basically means program suicide, at least for the Ramblin’Wreck.
So what is KSU’s fate? Many believe hiring Bohannon is a terrible decision. But you have to remember that KSU will recruit and function out of a different environment than the one Georgia Tech is melting in.
Director of Athletics Vaughn Williams does not see KSU making a hardcore ascent into big-time football, which is what Georgia State will attempt to do this season when it plays FBS football in the Sun Belt.
Williams sees a more blue- collar market approach to building a football team at the FCS level. This means KSU will likely join a conference like the Southern Conference, Ohio Valley or Big South and want to marinate at that level until winning is made a reality.
Division I college football exists in many tiers. Georgia Tech and Georgia State have found themselves in the wrong tiers in recent years.
KSU might be putting itself in pretty good shape. Georgia Southern is also slated to become a member of the Sun Belt in 2014, which means KSU will be the only FCS level program in Georgia aside from Mercer and Savannah State.
When you assess what KSU’s immediate environment will be, the assumption that a non- conventional system will hinder the program doesn’t seem quite as tangible.
Many high school teams continue to run the triple- option system with much success. The reason Johnson is struggling in Atlanta right now is because he’s trying to field a specialized system against juggernauts.
Georgia Southern has run the triple-option for years with success as a smaller school. While they are moving into a new environment in their own right, the stage is set for the Owls to find their place.
As long as you don’t correlate Bohannon’s name with the negativity that has bombarded his mentor, the prospect of seeing the most fundamentally complex offensive system in modern-day football surely comes across as something to be excited about.
Whether you like bashing Paul Johnson or not, it’s time to get over the “oh crap” rhetoric and invite in KSU’s first football coach.
Following the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting on Dec. 14, President Obama’s all-ear’s reaction that sparked a gun debate did not sit well with conservatives. While freak outs about gun confiscation and the destruction of the Second Amendment have been unfound and comical at best, Obama still had to find a way to rub gun advocate’s backs. On Jan. 27, in an interview with The New Republic, Obama likened with recreational gun owners when asked about his history with handling guns.
“Yes, in fact, up at Camp David we do skeet shooting all of the time,” Obama said. “And, I have a profound respect for the traditions of hunting that trace back in this country for generations. And I think those who dismiss that out of hand make a big mistake.”
Here we go. What we’ve seen so far from the new-age gun debate, which has focused almost entirely on the label AR- 15, which is a semi-automatic and ergonomically convenient hunting rifle, is a discussion that has been completely out of focus considering nearly all firearm injuries in this country are with handguns.
The national tangent of dialogue on guns has, however, shed some light on a key issue with the perception of the Second Amendment. Obama’s back-rub comments on his hunting past puts him under this scope as well.
Hunting is an integral part of America’s pastime and a tradition for many American families. However, hunting is not mentioned in the Second Amendment. While the national dialogue on the gun debate has not focused on hunting much, if at all, it has centered around a hunting rifle that is in high demand by prospective gun owners in the wake of discussion on renewing an assault rifle ban.
Conservatives are bashing the liberal media for misreporting what is and isn’t an assault rifle, claiming they are simply hunting rifles. But, humor this: if you’re trying to reinforce the foundations of the Second Amendment, citing sporting activities probably isn’t advised.
The U.S. Constitution states the right to bear arms within these terms: “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”
You have a right to a gun within the implications that it empowers you, as a citizen, against trespassers and tyranny within your own state of federal government. The Bill of Rights states, to the governing body, what powers the citizen has the right to wield. There’s a reason arms (in 1787 we’d be talking muskets) are written in with such implied power; They come with great responsibility.
One of the more dumbfounding pieces of gun-advocating rhetoric is when gun confiscation threats (even though, as stated, isn’t a reality) are followed with the formulaic response, ‘Well, why not take away our cars? Our baseball bats? Our hands? What’s next?’
Here’s where that reaction is completely off-base.
Cars are manufactured for transportation. Baseball bats are manufactured for sport. Hands. Well, I don’t really need to elaborate more there, do I?
The point is, guns are manufactured to kill. We have the right to own a killing machine under the confines of the Second Amendment. And, aside from hunting, there’s really no scenario where using a killing machine should be seen as something enjoyed–a novelty, if you will.
That is, unless you hunt. Anti-hunting conversation is usually retorted by the justification that controlling deer population reduces car-collisions. But, let’s be honest, how many are going out to hunt every day saying, ‘Honey, catch you later. We’ve got to go meet our deer quota for the betterment of society.’
In essence, hunting is a sport. AR-15s are, within our culture, a sport rifle. Even conservatives are trying to expose misreporting by saying so. Not to mention the fact that the conservative alternative to increased gun control is increased monitoring of who’s insane and who isn’t, based on medical records.
So, we’re going to take the rights away from people medics can deem mentally ill, but we’re not going to question the people who enjoy instigating the slow, painful death of a non-pasteurized animal? Sure, that last sentence might be a stretch, but the point is the entire gun debate has been comically misguided and off-track.
Neither side is providing a considerably decent argument, mainly because the argument went through the wrong door to begin with. The whole ‘what type of gun should I have’ debate turned brown and hit a new fan on Jan. 21 when Vice Pres. Joe Biden claimed a shotgun was a better alternative than an AR-15 for a woman trying to defend her home.
Under the parameters of the Second Amendment— specifically, self defense—an AR-15 is actually far more preferable to an otherwise vulnerable woman than a shotgun. In fact, feel free to watch YouTube videos of females shooting both and decide for yourself.
Our problem with guns in this country is real, but it has a lot less to do with the proper jargon and practicality of guns and a lot more to do with handguns, the lower-class, and a major lack of respect and civility between citizens.
In the past few months both the President and Vice President have offered shallow political rhetoric on the matter, and not much more.
Until both conservatives and liberals stop turning over the wrong rocks, not much in the gun debate is worth listening to.
That is, unless, you like contradictions, falsities, and irony.
We are all no longer left in the dark; KSU football is coming.
Last year, it seemed that the hush-hush tactics from members of the athletic department meant that the apocalypse happened in the Convocation Center offices. I spent three semesters at KSU as the sports editor for the Sentinel, and in that time I was never able to pry anything out of Director of Athletics Vaughn Williams.
I kept my patience, but feared the worst. Was KSU football going to happen? Wednesday’s approval from the Board of Regents was the biggest news that has hit KSU campus in years.
For the sake of news reporting, we’ve all heard the same things. KSU’s football program will enhance national perception.
It will increase the face value of our degrees.
It will attract more students, housing projects and community interest. These are all good things. Since my arrival at KSU in 2010, I’ve witnessed this university go from a standard second-tier backup to a marquee destination for metro area high school graduates, as well as international students. School pride is at an all-time high, especially with the brand new logos and merchandise.
With this announcement comes a new batch of rhetoric from the people in charge.
Who’s going to be the head coach? Where will we play? What conference will we play in? So, for the sake of everyone’s questions, I’ll use this column as an avenue for our next round of the guessing game.
To kill the first rumor, no, Derek Dooley probably won’t be the first head coach at KSU. The former Tennessee head coach’s father, Vince Dooley, headed the Football Explanatory Committee at KSU two years ago. Derek just took a job as the Dallas Cowboys receivers coach. KSU expects to have a coach in the next month and a half.
Here’s how the stadium situation looks: KSU Stadium, which will be renamed Fifth Third Bank Stadium in the name of the program’s $5 million donor, was originally introduced as the most advanced state-of-the-art women’s soccer facility when it opened in 2009. The 8,000 seat complex isn’t big enough, at the moment, to handle a Division I football team at a 24,000 student school, especially considering projections that KSU enrollment will be 30,000 by the time toe meets leather.
If you’ve ever walked into KSU Stadium, you might have noticed the oddly elongated, flat upper-concourse. There’s room for a second phase of seating on the west-side of the stadium. That could do the trick, but if we expect this program to continue to grow, we would need a stadium that seats at least 20,000 fans.
There has been mention of a completely new stadium going up on the other side of I-75. Here’s where we can place some trust. Williams was in charge of facilities as a director for the University of Connecticut’s athletics before he came to KSU. Facilities are not only a concern for football, but for baseball as well. Basketball, volleyball, track and field and soccer are all set with great facilities. One of Williams’ first major facility improvements was turning the Convocation Center into an arena-style experience with new LED boards and a fancy jumbotron.
For the sake of outrageous speculation, this football announcement is riding parallel with a current dispute between Atlanta Falcons owner Arthur Blank, the Georgia World Congress Center authority and the city of Atlanta over a $1 billion retractable roof stadium. The Falcons will almost inevitably have a new stadium by 2017, but recently reports have offered that if a downtown deal cannot get done, Blank will concede to footing most of the bill for a cheaper, open- air stadium in the metro-Atlanta area. Cobb and Gwinnett County have been mentioned as destinations for a site. If the Falcons move to Cobb County, KSU could have an easy out into finding a stadium with more than enough seating capacity. This is not rare: Many pro football teams share venues with colleges, and many pro sports teams don’t actually play in the city that prefixes their nickname.
Finally, we’re all left wondering what conference this team will play in. The Atlantic Sun Conference is a Division I conference that doesn’t sponsor football, but could retain the other KSU athletic teams. Either football, or the entire athletic department will jump from the A-Sun to a more accommodating conference by 2015. The conference will be an FCS division. Mercer, Savannah State and Georgia Southern are the only other FCS teams in Georgia.
The Pioneer League has been kind to A-Sun schools. Mercer and Stetson will join it this fall, along with a former A-Sun team in Campbell and A-Sun affiliate Jacksonville. Another option is the Colonial Athletic Association, which Georgia State and Old Dominion are leaving right now.
Speaking of, those are two pretty young programs joining the FBS, where Georgia and Georgia Tech reign supreme. Georgia State began in 2010 and Old Dominion in 2009. They will compete in the Sun Belt and Conference USA, respectively. As well, South Alabama, which started its football program this past fall, began at the FBS level in the Sun Belt.
The Ohio Valley Conference (which houses four Tennessee teams and nearby neighbor Jacksonville State of Alabama), Big South, and the Southern Conference (home to the traditional FCS power Georgia Southern) are options as well.
Will KSU be a winning program early on? Probably not. It will likely play a transitional schedule in its first few years, meaning it will beat up on a lot of Division II, Division III and National Association of Intercollegiate Athletes schools. Expect Reinhardt University, which is playing its first game this fall, to come calling. The best news is, with Mercer beginning its program this year, the rivalry will evolve, and we can really hate the color orange.
The above text is basically your speculative style-guide for the next two years. Beat the heck out of it. It’s going to be a fun ride, and 2015 will be here before we know it. There’s no reason to think KSU doesn’t have the foundation and resources to become a football team we can be proud of for the rest of our lives. Being a part of the program’s birth will be something you will always be able to hold onto.
According to gun enthuasiasts, President Barack Obama wants to take our guns away. At least, that’s what all of the anti-Obama memes that are being shared on my Facebook are indicating.
It’s amazing how the news media and social media can turn us into rhetoric-blasting nincompoops if we let it.
The truth is, Obama doesn’t want to take our guns away at all. He’s not challenging our 2nd Amendment.
According to whitehouse.gov, On Jan. 16 Obama issued three presidential memorandums titled, “Tracing of Firearms in Connection with Criminal Investigations, Improving Availability of Relevant Executive Branch Records to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System, and Engaging in Public Health Research on the Causes and Prevention of Gun Violence.”
None of these memorandums mention the confiscation of weapons. That has not stopped an outcry from those under the misconception that the administration wants to tackle the foundation of the Second Amendment.
An article on newsmax.com on Jan. 24 quoted former U.S. Attorney General Edwin Meese III claiming that Obama would be impeached if he enacted an executive order on gun control.
“It would not be legal. It would not be constitutional,” Meese said. “And, indeed, if he tried to override the Second Amendment in any way I believe it would be an impeachable offense.”
Well yeah. Any president that tries to tear down one of the amendments in the Bill of Rights is going to catch some serious heat from this thing we like to call checks and balances. It’s what has kept us from having a tyrannical dictator in office for 236 years.
The problem with our society and the media is the fact we let sensationalized conversation become the foundation of our perception, when in reality the media gives us anything but the truth. This fallacy has evolved into a quick-witted, demonizing habit of challenging the public figures we think we hate through bastardized blips of information.
These viral memes, calling Obama a moron and classifying him in the same breath as Hitler, are off-base and moronic themselves. They’re all just as bad as the Sandy Hook conspiracy videos. But, I digress.
The same can be argued for those who identify themselves as the left, and how we can perceive it. Just because CNN’s Peirs Morgan hosts a gun debate show and brings on idiotic guests so he can prop his pants doesn’t mean the network is subsidizing Obama’s administration and is part of some underground plot to tear down America.
News networks exist to sensationalize and entertain. It’s why they can’t just report the news. That doesn’t sell. They must have opinionated programs with seemingly endearing hosts and idiotic counterparts to prove points. Yes, CNN and MSNBC are left-wing media. Yes, FOX is right-wing media.
If we keep letting the media be our guide, we are going to continue to become a polarized and dysfunctional culture and our congress will continue to serve as a microcosm of the spoiled state of our society.
The president isn’t going to strip the Second Amendment.
In a New York Times article posted Sunday, Obama made it clear he understands gun owners’ disdain for the thought of disarming the public, but also makes it clear that is not
in the realm of possibility.
He’s quoted in the article saying, “If you grew up and your dad gave you a hunting rifle when you were 10, and you went out and spent the day with him and your uncles, and that became a part of your family tradition, you can see why you’d be pretty protective of that.” “So it’s trying to bridge those gaps that I think is going to be part of the biggest task over the next several months,” Obama said.
Our president isn’t trying to take away our guns to make him and the government
an all-encompassing entity that will turn on us and tear this country to the ground.
He has signed memorandums on action in gun control because he knows we need to do something about the negative effects that gun culture can have on our society. You may not feel that way because you live in a rural area and have been a responsible gun owner, and he gets that. But, people who live in urban areas and fear being held at gunpoint on a daily basis don’t feel the way you do.
We are a people. The victims of Sandy Hook were part of our people. Victims of every day gun violence are part of our people. Our President is working within the confines of the American system and constitution to help prevent tragedies in the future.
Also, it’s the media’s fault for misreporting the AR-15 as an assault weapon. But, that doesn’t change the fact you still don’t need an assault weapon. It still doesn’t change the fact most steps will be taken to prevent gun violence with handguns, even though the right-wing media wants you to believe the fact the president is opposed to ownership of such weapons is the driving-force of this debate.
Nowhere in the process will he try to remove your gun from your hands. If you honestly think that you need to get rid of your television.
Since the announcement in September 2010 that KSU would launch a football team, which included a framework for the development of the program, little has been said about the progress. In fact, as time has gone by without major announcements, students and faculty have begun to wonder if the reality of a team hitting the field in the near future is slim to none.
Finally, after constant questioning on the subject has been met with guarded answers, the university has finally unveiled some good news.
KSU will present a financial plan to the state Board of Regents today in what will be the final step in launching the football program. If approved, President Daniel Papp and athletics Director Vaughn Williams will present the news at a pep-rally, which will be held at noon tomorrow at the Convocation Center.
“We appreciate everyone who has encouraged us, and we eagerly look forward to the board’s decision,” Papp said. “Whatever the board decides, it will have a tremendous impact on the future of KSU’s intercollegiate athletics program and the future of this university.”
The plan includes a $100 increase in student fees, per semester that will be added at the beginning of the coming Fall term. Students approved the student fee increase in an SGA vote in November 2010.
According to a Jan. 3 report from the Atlanta Journal Constitution, there’s also the possibility of an announcement of a major donation from a booster—something that was considered vital to jumpstarting the program.
Fielding a football team will also mean the addition of a new women’s team, justified by the mandate of Title IX. There is no indication, to this point, of which sport will be added to the women’s varsity. KSU fields a women’s team in every sport sponsored by the Atlantic Sun Conference except for sand volleyball.
“Many of KSU’s students, friends and supporters are enthusiastic about the possibility of adding football and more women’s intercollegiate sports at the university,” Papp said.
The Atlantic Sun Conference does not sponsor football, which means the Owls will play in a separate conference for football. There’s also a slim possibility that all KSU athletic teams will join a new conference in the process. KSU would participate as a Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) member of Division I of the NCAA. Other new football programs that have started as FCS Division I members in the region in the past five years include Georgia State, Savannah State and South Alabama.
If the Board of Regents approves of the plan, Williams said he will begin a search for a head coach that could end by February, as well as a search for conference to play in.
The 2010 plan set the target date for kickoff as 2014 at the earliest. However it has now been set for 2015.
Williams confirmed in an interview with The Sentinel last Fall that the Owls will begin play at KSU Stadium, which is an 8,000-plus-seat stadium that is the current home to the women’s soccer and lacrosse teams. The stadium was built to support football but, despite architectural features that offer room for a phase II, will not be expanded.
One of the best parts of the holiday season is college football bowl season. While our Owls are still not on the gridiron, we can still have some fun with what the break has in store for college football fans. Here’s The Sentinel’s BCS bowl projections. (As of Nov. 16)
ROSE BOWL: OREGON VS. NEBRASKA
The Sentinel: Oregon has a gauntlet left with Stanford, Oregon State, and the likely Pac-12 title game vs. USC. The stretch here is predicting the Ducks will lose once, or twice in its final three games. Nebraska will win the Big Ten title game over Wisconsin to earn an automatic Rose Bowl bid.
ORANGE BOWL: FLORIDA STATE VS. LOUISVILLE
The Sentinel: Yes, it seems lame that the Big East still gets an automatic qualification for the BCS, but Louisville, Rutgers and Cincinnati all have been impressive this year. Here’s to Louisville pulling out the conference title. Florida State has been one of the most overlooked teams all year out of the ACC, and should dominate this game.
SUGAR BOWL: CLEMSON VS. GEORGIA
The Sentinel: A Georgia win over Alabama in the SEC title game would regularly send the SEC champion to the national championship, but if the Bulldogs win, they still won’t have enough style points to impress human voters. Yep, a Georgia win could end the SEC’s national title streak. But, this matchup would bring back a great old rivalry. Clemson has been awesome all year, little to the attention of the masses.
FIESTA BOWL: OKLAHOMA VS. TEXAS A&M
The Sentinel: This Fiesta Bowl would bring back an old Big XII matchup. Texas A&M is on a roll with Johnny “Football” Manziel at the helm, and a 10-2 finish could send the Aggies to the Fiesta Bowl, rather than an 11-2 Alabama team. Manziel’s possible Heisman campaign could make TAMU a sexy pick, and a regionally relevant one. Oklahoma will replace Kansas State as the Wildcats will be heading for a chance at the Crystal Ball.
BCS NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP: NOTRE DAME VS. KANSAS STATE
The Sentinel: Yes, this can happen. Kansas State has been best this year down the stretch, against the best competition. Wins over Baylor and Texas, in a nailbiter, will send Bill Snyder and the Wildcats to Miami. Even better, Notre Dame will finish undefeated and make an appearance simply because the human voters can’t say no.
For the first time since Dec. 23, 2011, KSU’s men’s basketball team had reason to celebrate. Heading into the week, the Owls had left the basketball court 21 straight times without a victory.
That all changed in the blink of an eye last Monday night, as senior all-conference guard Markeith Cummings hit a mid-range jumper with less than a second to play in overtime to give KSU a 67-65 victory over South Carolina State at the Smith-Hammond- Middleton Memorial Center in Orangeburg, S.C.
The win might have been just as much of a surprise to Owls fans as the shot was to Cummings, who wasn’t even expecting to touch the rock on the final play of the game.
“The shot was supposed to go to Del, but Del passed it back to me and it just went in,” Cummings said of sophomore guard Delbert Love.
Love was handed the controls on the final play of regulation, with a chance to win the game, but his three point attempt was off the mark. The second-half saw six ties and 10 lead changes.
“I thought we came out and played hard,” Cummings said. “We kind of let them back in the game midway through the first half. We just had to come out in the second half and play harder.”
KSU (1-1) opened the game with an 18-5 lead, but only led 32-27 at intermission. The Bulldogs would take the lead at the start of the second period with a 10-1 run to force a more heated contest.
South Carolina State (1-1) outscored the Owls 30-25 in the final period to send the game to overtime, where the Owls finally prevailed. KSU lost to the Bulldogs, 104-98, in double-overtime last year at the Convocation Center.
“I am pleased with the total team effort. I think it started with our starting five, getting us out to a good start early,” KSU head coach Lewis Preston said. “I told them at the end of the day we are going to have to withstand some punches. Even more importantly, we were going to have to face some adversity.”
Cummings finished the game with 18 points on 8-of-14 shooting and 2-of-3 from the charity stripe. Love struggled from the floor, going 4-of-15, but finished second in scoring for the Owls with 16 points.
Senior forward Aaron Anderson had a double- double for the second straight game, going 6-of-9 for 12 points, along with 11 rebounds. Anderson, who had 16 and 12 against Tennessee, was named the Atlantic Sun Conference Men’s Basketball Player of the Week.
South Carolina State was led by Adama Adams, who was the game’s scoring leader with 26 points, including 8-of-12 from the free throw line.
The Bulldogs also got a double-double out of forward Matthew Hezekiah, who had 14 points and 10 boards.
With the victory, the Owls continue the momentum it built with a strong, 76-67 loss at Tennessee last Friday.
KSU will hit the court again in the Comfort Suites Invitational, hosted by Eastern Kentucky, in Richmond, Ky.
The Owls will be back on the home floor on Wednesday at 7 p.m. against the Georgia Southern Eagles and Saturday at 2:30 p.m. vs. UT-Chattanooga.