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Posts from March 2010

Daily Briefing for Wednesday, March 31

The offensive line isn’t the only area where FAU could be stretched thin during spring drills, which start at 3:30 p.m. today.

The defensive line also has a couple of players who are battling some injuries, but the Owls are perhaps better prepared to deal with the situations on this side of the line.
Just how much action Nick Osborne (pictured) will see is in question due to a rotator cuff injury. If Osborne misses time, this could open the door for true freshman Cory Henry to get more work in the spring and ultimately could help him play this fall.
Also defensive tackle Jarvis Givens, who isn’t listed on the team’s two-deep, is still recovering from the neck injury he received in the Wyoming game last season. Givens likely will be limited, so this is a chance for senior Mauricio Ricquer to show if he can be in the rotation.
One player you shouldn’t be looking for among the defensive front is Chris Newbold, who at one time last season  was the backup behind Josh Savidge at defensive tackle. Newbold has been moved to offensive line.
Owl Links: Your daily guide to what's being written about the Owls
Basketball coach Mike Jarvis continued his analysis of the NCAA Tournament with as he took a look at the teams in the Final Four.
On the baseball front, we were the first to report that reliever Glen Troyanowski had season-ending shoulder surgery and we also had a preview of tonight’s game at Miami.
Other linkage…
Sun-Sentinel columnist Ethan Skolnik talked with FAU coach Howard Schnellenberger
The Palm Beach Post had a preview of the spring drills as did the Sun-Sentinel.
Here’s the Sun-Sentinel’s preview of the baseball game at UM
Owl Cal: Your calendar to FAU events

3:30 p.m. Football, Spring Practice, Oxley Practice Fields

6 p.m. Baseball, FAU at Miami

Troyanowski out for year

FAU will be without the services of closer Glen Troyanowski for the remainder of the year, coach John McCormack said Tuesday.

Troyanowski underwent shoulder surgery last week at Dr. James Andrews’ clinic in Pensacola. He likely won’t be back on a mound again until late fall, but should be available for 2011.

The junior righthander has one save on the season, but hasn’t pitched since the second weekend of the season at Auburn.

Junior Andy Mee has assumed the closer role in Troyanowski’s place and is tied for the Sun Belt lead with four saves.

Troyanowski recorded six saves last season after becoming the closer midway through the year.

FAU Daily Briefing for Tuesday, March 30

There are three football players whose status  is up in the air as the Owls prepare for spring drills to begin on Wednesday.

The biggest issues is that two of the players are starters on the new revamped offensive line, and they badly need the practice time.

Starting right tackle Max Karrick received a concussion in the car accident that seriously injured safety Austin Jensen, and starting right guard Eric Hansen is still recovering from the broken leg he received last season.

“We don’t know if they are going to be able to practice,” Owls coach Howard Schnellenberger said.

Even if Hansen and Karrick can participate, they likely will be very limited and they really need every snap they can get.

Also on the injured list as spring drills start is tight end Nexon Dorvilus (broken arm).

In addition, the Owls will be without defensive back Darrian Thomas, who has left the team.

Thomas, best remembered for his defensive extra point return of a blocked PAT, was always one of my favorite players and received playing time in nine games last season, usually as a nickelback. 

Owl Links
Your daily guide to what's being written about the Owls not only had our spring football preview, but also had news of tight end Jason Harmon working out for Tampa Bay and Miami and meeting with Jacksonville. We also had an update on right tackle Carl Spitale, who did well at a recent CFL workout on our Owl Things Considered blog.
Don’t forget to check back later today for our preview of Wednesday’s baseball game at Miami. 
Other linkage…
Owl Cal
Your calendar to FAU events
6 p.m. Baseball, FAU at Miami
Spitale improves times at CFL workout

Former FAU tackle Carl Spitale showed scouts from the Canadian Football League’s Hamilton Tiger-Cats a little more speed and agility than he displayed at FAU’s Pro Day.

Working out in Lakeland last week, Spitale ran a 5.17 in the 40-yard dash and a 4.9 in the short shuttle. He ran 5.22 and 5.47, respectively, at FAU.

“It was a lot more relaxed than FAU’s Pro Day,” said the 6-foot-7, 327-pound Spitale. “That was probably because it was as the second time around and the pressure was off.”

Spitale plans to join teammates Jason Harmon and Rusty Smith at the Miami Dolphins local workout on April 9. If he isn’t signed by an NFL team, Spitale intends to give the CFL a go.

“Football is football,” Spitale said. “I can’t take a year off from football. It’s not the NFL, but it’s a good backup plan. I’m totally for it.”

Daily Briefing for Monday, March 29

Things are starting to get pretty interesting with the FAU baseball team.

With its 4-3 victory vs. Louisiana-Lafayette on Sunday, the Owls (15-8, 6-3 Sun Belt) won another Sun Belt Conference series, are in the thick of the early Sun Belt Conference race and are No. 35 in the RPI according to Boyd’s World.
Up ahead: a Wednesday date at Miami, which took two out of three from North Carolina State over the weekend. The Hurricanes are 2-2 in their last four games after losing to UCF 6-3 last Wednesday in Coral Gables and are 16-7 overall.
Owl Links
Your daily guide to what's being written about the Owls
This morning, reported that tight end Jason Harmon has workouts scheduled with the Bucs and Dolphins and will also meet with the Jaguars.
Also, check out our blog,  Owl Things Considered, as we give you some details on the planned improvements to the baseball stadium complete with some snazzy pictures.
We also had a recap of the baseball team’s victory on Sunday at Louisiana-Lafayette.
Today we’ll help you kick-off your week with some more FAU football coverage as we post our spring football preview.
Here’s the baseball game story from The Lafayette Daily Advertiser
The Sun-Sentinel has a series review.
Owl Cal
Your calendar to FAU events
6 p.m. Baseball, FAU at Miami
FAU ballpark improvements could begin in July

FAU administrators are currently considering the feasibility of about $1.5 million worth of renovations to the baseball stadium.

Construction, which could begin as early as July, would take place in three phases.

The drawings on the right are preliminary. The administration has commissioned more detailed designs.

For fans, the most important part of Phase I will be on-site bathrooms located on the third base side of the park. Currently, fans wishing to use the restrooms have to go to the pool area – “for your convenience.”

The first phase would also spruce up the look of the stadium, adding pavers and columns that would give the ballpark a look that is consistent with the recently renovated Burrow.

It will also convert the area under the existing bleaches from storage to a covered walkway that houses concession and merchandise stands. A new gate and ticket booth will allow FAU to better control foot traffic into the stadium.

Phase II will add a second set of public restrooms, this time on the first base side of the ballpark, and expand the grandstands down both lines. They will also expand and cover the batting cages beyond the rightfield wall.

Phase III, which is being referred to by at least one administrator as “the dream phase,” would add a clubhouse beyond the Owls’ first base dugout, cutting into the berm on that side of the park. There could also be a party deck or some sort of VIP seating.

The berm on the third base side will not be affected. There is no plan to add a berm beyond the outfield walls.

“I’m hoping after the season is over we can do something to dress it up over the summer time, whether it’s one or two or three phases,” FAU Athletic Director Craig Angelos said.

It’s possible – in fact somewhat likely – that Phases I and II could be constructed simultaneously. If that happens Phase III could wait a year or longer.

FAU is pursuing various means of funding the improvements. Best case scenario entails having a donor provide the money, but there are a couple other scenarios.

Angelos said money secured for the baseball improvements would not come from the fund for the football stadium.
He put the likeliness that construction for the improvements would begin in July at “50 percent.”

Daily Briefing for Sunday, March 28

After a nice comeback by FAU on Saturday to defeat the Ragin’ Cajuns 4-3, the Owls return quickly top the ballpark in Lafayette, Louisiana for a 1 p.m. start (Noon in Acadiana).

The Owls can win the series with a victory over the Ragin’ Cajuns and anytime you win 2-of-3 on the road you have to be pleased.
A victory is also important because Wednesday the Owls face Miami, not the team you want to be facing following a loss.
I’m proud to say the small oceanfront bar I went to following the game had one of its two TVs tuned to CSS. Hopefully they were watching the Owls’ thrilling victory. I have ATT UVerse, not Comcast, so I didn’t get to watch the broadcast. I haven’t heard many complaints so I assume the telecast was decent and didn’t refer to FAU as FIU too many times?
Owl Links
Your daily guide to what's being written about the Owls was monitoring every pitch thrown in Louisiana-Lafayette and had this recap.
We’ll be following the action again today with Twitter updates and a recap when the game is over.
Other linkage...
The Louisiana Daily Advertiser was at the game and had this to say.
Owl Cal
Your calendar to FAU events
7:30 a.m. Men’s Golf, FAU Spring Break Championship
1 p.m. Baseball, FAU at Louisiana-Lafayette
1 p.m. Softball, FAU at North Texas
FAU ticket office gets new home

The FAU athletic department’s newest building is up and running.

Unfortunately it’s not the new football stadium, but the FAU ticket office indeed has a new home.
That’s good news for those who pick up or buy tickets in person from the hard-working Christine Davis, FAU's ticket manager.
The old office was on the second floor of the Oxley Center and since fans had to either trudge up a flight of stairs or take the elevator to get their tickets, this is an improvement.
Now fans can walk up to the building located to the east of the Oxley Center, which even has a professional-style ticket window.
There are some more offices in the building as well and some people in marketing and development have moved down there, but the ticket office is where many fans make one of their earliest connections with the athletic department, so it’s good to see them get a prime location that will make it easier for fans to pick up their tickets.
FAU Daily Briefing
for Saturday, March 27

After a disappointing 9-3 loss to Louisiana-Lafayette on Friday, FAU must regroup for today’s game vs. the Ragin’ Cajuns.

The good news for Owl fans is that Mike Gipson will be on the hill and FAU has plenty of experience of bouncing back after a Friday loss. I think FAU will have getting beat on Friday and winning on Saturday down to a science.
The unfortunate thing is that apparently is part of the plan. FAU scored three runs off ULL ace Zach Osborne in the series opener. The Ragin’ Cajuns aren’t known for the hitting and I’ll go out on a limb that the chances were pretty good Gipson could have held them to fewer than three on Friday.
I don’t mind seeing Gipson skipped over on Friday, but until FAU can produce a starter who can be competitive against the opponent’s best pitcher, the Owls should pitch their ace against the other team’s ace and let their No. 2 (whoever that is) go on Saturday.
Throwing Gipson on Saturday looks like the Owls are taking chances, but in a way it’s being too conservative. FAU looks like it is willing to sacrifice a victory on Friday to get one on Saturday. I predict that with the current order Sun Belt Conference sweeps, taking 2-of-3 vs. Sun Belt teams will happen, but sweeps will be few and far between.

Owl Links: Your daily guide to what's being written about the Owls is reporting former FAU quarterback Rusty Smith wil meet with the Tennessee Titans. From people who know more about how NFL teams operate told me it could be a positive sign, since he already worked out in front of Titans scouts at FAU’s Pro Day.
We also were monitoring the baseball team’s 9-3 loss at Louisiana-Lafayette. We’ll be keeping tabs on the game today as well. And don’t forget today’s game will be televised at 4 p.m. on CSS (that’s Channel 32 on Comcast here in Palm Beach County. If you go to a sports bar today to watch the Elite Eight, tell the friendly barkeep to tune one of the TVs to the Owls.
Other linkage...

Owl Cal: Your calendar to FAU events

11:30  a.m. Golf, FAU Spring Break Championship, Gleneagles Country Club
4 p.m. Softball, FAU at North Texas
4:07 p.m. Baseball, FAU at Louisiana-Lafayette
5 p.m. Softball, FAU at North Texas


FIU running back
stabbed to death

UPDATED 10:33 p.m.:There is sad news out of Miami as Florida International running back Kendall Berry was stabbed to death on campus on Thursday.

Berry,  who would have been a junior in the fall played in seven games last season rushing for 264 yards and scored six touchdowns.

The Haines City graduate did not play in 2008 and rushed for 81 yards in 2007.

According to the Miami Herald, there was an argument outside a rec center and someone stabbed Berry, who died on the way to the hospital.

Friday night the Herald reported Quentin Wyche, former teammate of Berry's was arrested after turning himself in to authorities in Berry's death.

FIU has suspended its spring practices indefinitely.

FAU Daily Briefing
for Friday, March 26

FAU shook up its rotation and sophomore Ryan Garton will get the call tonight at Louisiana-Lafayette.

This is a good move, but it is asking a lot for Garton to take the hill in front of the rowdy crowd for the 1,000th game at Tigue Moore Field.
It seems to me like Gipson would be the logical choice for Friday night, but then again Garton has had extended outings the last two Fridays.
We’ll see how he does tonight. 

Owl Links: Your daily guide to what's being written about the Owls

AT we posted our preview of the series with the Ragin’ Cajuns after taking to Ryan Garton about his first career start.
We also posted the second edition of our Owl Talk podcast, where defensive coordinator Kurt Van Valkenburgh discussed which defensive spots are up for grabs this spring.
We’ll be monitoring tonight’s game so join us here for updates and a recap after the game.
  • The Daily Advertiser takes a look at the 1,000th game at The Tigue – the home field for ULL.
  • Here’s a preview from the Sun-Sentinel
  • The Bleacher Report has a write up on FAU’s stadium effort.

Owl Cal: Your calendar to FAU events

11 :30 a.m. Men’s Golf, FAU Spring Break Championship
7:30 p.m. Baseball, FAU at ULL


Important stretch ahead for FAU baseball

FAU didn’t have too much time to celebrate its two-game sweep of Cornell on Wednesday night. After the night game finished around 9 p.m., the team was to convene back at the Oxley Center at 4 this morning for its early flight to Lafayette, La. where the Owls will face the Ragin’ Cajuns this weekend.

I trust the team made it out OK because I wasn’t there this morning to send them off.
The tough leg of travel is fitting because the Owls are about to embark on the toughest stretch of the season. And it’s a stretch that will prove if FAU is indeed for real.
First up is a three-game series vs. Louisiana-Lafayette. A larger than usual crowd will be on hand Friday for the 1,000th game at “Tigue” Moore Field and Saturday’s game will be played on TV, giving players on both sides a little extra motivation to play well.
After three games vs. the Ragin’ Cajuns, the Owls play at Miami on Wednesday, which is always a tough opponent for FAU.
The following weekend Middle Tennessee, which beat the Owls in three tough games last season, comes to Boca Raton for three followed by a back-to-back games against UM.
It’s early, but FAU is figuring in some of the tournament  talk. Southeast has the Owls projected to go to a Regional and Boyd’s World, says FAU has a pseudo-RPI of 38.
If the Owls can win both Sun Belt series and defeat Miami in one of the three games vs. the Hurricanes, the regional talk will really heat up – and be more legitimate.
FAU has accomplished a lot already this season, but a good showing in the next nine games will have the Owls in pursuit of even loftier goals.

Owl Links: Your daily guide to what's being written about the Owls was at the ballpark for FAU’s 3-2 victory and provided this recap complete with video of post-game comments from John McCormack.
Last week was the debut of OwlTalk with Brian Rowitz and not only did it create a buzz among Owl fans after Howard Schnellenberger told Rowitz that Rod Payne won’t coach the defensive tackles in the fall, but others noticed as well. The Orlando Sentinel got wind of Sanchez Hughley’s interview with Rowitz and mentioned it on their high sports blog. Thanks for the plug to our friends at the Orlando Sentinel.
Other Links…

Owl Cal: Your calendar to FAU events

7:30 p.m., Baseball, FAU at Louisiana-Lafayette
3 p.m., Baseball, FAU at Louisiana-Lafayette
Noon,  Baseball, FAU at Louisiana-Lafayette
Hughley's return less and less likely

The more I talk to FAU coach Mike Jarvis, the more likely it appears that Sanchez Hughley will not play for the Owls next season.

I asked Jarvis about the chances of Hughley not returning next season.

“I’d say it’s a pretty good possibility in light of the injuries he’s had, with his health, and he has a lot of options in his professional life,” Jarvis said.

Hughley started 28 of the Owls 30 games this season after sitting out last year following surgery for a blood clot. His 9.9 points per game was fourth on the Owls, and he is one of nine national finalists for the V Foundation Comeback Award.

Though only 6-foot-4, Hughley played the role of power forward for the Owls. He took a beating on defense and dealt with various nagging injuries much of the season.

Hughley is slated to graduate in the spring, but still has a year of NCAA eligibility remaining.

In a postgame press conference near the end of the season, Jarvis said emphatically that Hughley would return. Nearly every public statement since then, however, has put Hughley’s return in further doubt.

As part of last Thursday’s Owl Talk podcast Hughley told’s Brian Rowitz that he would like to return next season but that he wasn’t sure it would happen.


Now it seems the chances are slim we'll see Hughley play for the Owls again.


- Chuck King

Alvarez will try to throw Cornell a curve

Wanted to talk a little about tonight’s series finale against Cornell, but first let’s look back at last night.

I’ve been around baseball for most of my life without being in the ballpark when someone hit for a cycle. I can cross that off the list, now. Andy Mee’s seventh inning triple gave him the rare accomplishment. The triple is usually the hardest hit to get, but everyone in the press box knew Mee would go for it once his line drive in the seventh cleared the centerfielder’s head.

Not known as a speedster, Mee made it to third with relative ease, electrifying the press box. Could Mee be on his way to Sun Belt Player of the Week honors?

It was also good to see Taylor Everist work out some of his mechanical difficulties while throwing five hitless innings. He’ll pitch out of the pen this weekend at Louisiana-Lafayette. Put a couple good outings back to back and he could be back starting weekend games, FAU coach John McCormack said.

Moving to tonight’s game, starter R. J. Alvarez (photo) will be on a shorter pitch count than in his last outing. That’s not necessarily a bad thing for the freshman.

He’s going from a 60 pitch limit to a 50 pitch max because McCormack wants him ready to come out of the pen this weekend.

“We’re going to take him on the trip because Kenny Gray has a (school) project and can’t miss it,” McCormack said.

He's got a tough act to follow tonight, after starters Everist, Kevin Alexander and Mike Gipson have combined to allow one run over the last three games.

Alvarez is being brought along slowly after injuring his elbow in the preseason. Up until his last outing the righthander wasn’t allowed to throw anything but fastballs. Now he’s looking to bring a curveball into the equation.

“I was out there 0-2 throwing fastballs,” Alvarez said. “It kind of sucked. Now I can throw a curveball and keep them off balance.”

Alvarez was able to get by on his fastball because it’s topped out at 95 mph in single-inning appearances. Don’t look for that heater tonight. Alvarez’s velocity will likely be lower as he tries to extend himself for a few more innings.

“As a starter I’m not trying to throw hard – just hit low 90s and try to locate,” Alvarez said. “As a closer I’m trying to come in and throw as hard as I can.”

After Alvarez, look for Jake Meiers, Hugh Adams, Kenny Gray and Jason Boyer to all get at least one inning.

Owl Links
Your daily guide to what is being written about FAU

For those looking to understand why all those upsets happened in the first two rounds of the NCAA Tournament, brought you Mike Jarvis’ analysis. We were also the only outlet to cover FAU’s victory over Cornell last night from first pitch to final out, offering a game story, video highlights, and a photo gallery.

Owl Cal
A calendar of FAU events

Baseball – Cornell at FAU 6:30 p.m.

Garton to replace Everist on Friday

BOCA RATON – FAU manager John McCormack has decided to make a switch in his weekend rotation. Ryan Garton will take the mound on Friday when the Owls open a weekend series at Louisiana-Lafayette.

Garton (2-0, 3.63) will replace Taylor Everist (1-4, 6.95), who has struggled in his last couple outings, lasting 1 2/3 innings two starts ago against Troy and less than an inning against Arkansas-Little Rock.

Garton (photo) has relieved Everist’s short outings both times, allowing three runs in seven innings against Troy to earn the win, and three runs in 5 1/3 innings against UALR.

Mike Gipson, owner of a 4-0 record and 1.80 ERA will remain the Saturday starter and Kevin Alexander (2-2, 6.04) will start on Sunday.

“I was happy to hear it because I’ve been trying my hardest, doing what I do, and I’ve been pretty good in long relief lately,” Garton said.

FAU pen should get some work tonight

Mike Gipson’s and Kevin Alexander’s outstanding weekend starts presented FAU coach John McCormack with a problem he won’t mind having for the remainder of the year.

The Saturday and Sunday complete games kept a few pitchers who could have used a little work on the bench.

McCormack’s starting to get accustomed to such an outing from Gipson (right), who has limited opponents to a total of seven earned runs in his five outings this year.

Alexander’s start was more of a pleasant surprise. The freshman had struggled since making his tremendous debut against Cincinnati during opening weekend.

Following Sunday’s game, McCormack said he was really only hoping for three good innings out of Alexander.

“We really wanted to get Barry (Rooks) into the game and Andy Mee hasn’t thrown in a week, but when you get the complete games I think you’ve got to take them – give the bullpen some time off because there will be days when we really need those guys,” McCormack said.

Rooks and Mee will likely get at least an inning on Tuesday against Cornell. Taylor Everist will get the start and throw a couple innings in an effort to fix the mechanical issues that have rendered him ineffective over his last two Friday starts.

McCormack also wanted to get Ryan Bernal some work on Sunday, so don’t be surprised if the senior righthander gets an inning or two.

Flashing leather: One reason why Gipson, Alexander and the rest of the hurlers are having success is that the people behind them are making plays. FAU’s 17 errors tie the Owls with Arkansas-Little Rock for the fewest miscues in the conference.

FAU pitchers have allowed only 11 unearned runs this season. Only Troy pitchers can claim fewer.

Owl Links
Your daily guide to what is being written about FAU

Readers of this blog were the first to know that center Ryan Wischnefski will graduate and not return for his final year of eligibility. As part of FAUOwlAccess’s commitment to have a football story every Monday, we told you about Tom Smith, a junior running back from Apopka who already has a scholarship offer from FAU. We also offered this preview of tonight’s baseball game against Rutgers.

Owl Cal
A calendar of FAU events

Baseball – Cornell at FAU, 6:30 p.m.

Baseball – Cornell at FAU, 6:30 p.m.

Lineman Wischnefski not returning in 2010

If you thought it was going to be tough for FAU to replace the four seniors on the offensive line who graduated, now it appears the Owls will be rebuilding the entire offensive line.

Center Ryan Wischenski, who was a junior last season and was going to be the only returning starter in 2010, will graduate early and won’t play this fall, an FAU official said. It’s possible Wischnefski is headed to graduate school.

This is a big loss.

In my opinion, Wischnefski was just coming into his own after his first full year of starting at center after Nick Paris graduated in 2008. His experience was going to be needed with the losses of Dave Matlock, Lavoris Williams, Kevin Miller and Carl Spitale.

Now the line is rebuilding from scratch.

You may remember Wischnefski had committed to N.C. State before changing his mind and signing with the Owls. I believe that is the only time a player has de-comitted to a team from BCS conference and signed with FAU.

According to the spring depth chart released today, redshirt sophomore Jordan Sessa will start spring drills as the starting center.

Here’s a few other interesting items from the depth chart…


  • Quarterbacks David Kooi and Graham Wilbert are listed as co-backups behind Jeff Van Camp. I think that’s being politically correct. Kooi was way ahead of Wilbert once Rusty Smith’s season was over and played well in games.
  • At first glance it appears the Owls are thin at DL, but I expect Cory Henry to be on the two-deep (if not in the starting role) by the time spring ends.
  • At middle linebacker Michael Lockley and David Hinds are both listed as starter so the spring should be important to both players.
  • Chris Jackson is listed as backup fullback ahead of senior David Muniz, who missed last season for academic reasons.


    X Lester Jean
    Amos Wood

    Z Avery Holley
    Grant Glover

    LT Troy Niblack
    DeAndre Williams

    LG Samuel McRoy
    Ryan Houston

    C Jordan Sessa
    Jimmy Colley

    RG Eric Hansen
    Jared Pizzuti

    RT Max Karrick
    Chris Chappell

    TE Rob Housler
    Darian Williams

    QB Jeff Van Camp
    David Kooi OR Graham Wilbert

    RB Alfred Morris
    Jeff Blanchard OR Willie Floyd

    FB Xavier Stinson
    Chris Jackson

    LDE Kevin Cyrille
    Nick Osborne

    LT Dino Cox
    Mauricio Riquer

    RT Andy Czuprinski
    Jimmy Jean

    RDE Daniel Joseph
    Jamere Johnson

    SLB Malik Eugene OR Yourhighness Morgan

    MLB Michael Lockley OR David Hinds

    WLB Alex Pattee
    Randell Johnson

    CB Tavious Polo
    Keith Reaser

    SS Marcus Bartels
    Tony Rodriguez

    FS Ed Alexander OR Rod Huggins

    CB Tarvoris Hill
    Curtis Cross


  • Gipson just what FAU needed

    It's a short edition of Owl Things Considered today due to a 1 p.m. baseball game, but we'd be remiss if we didn't give kudos to Mike Gipson for his performance on Saturday.

    The day after a demoralizing 16-6 loss, all Gipson did was go out and throw a 5-hit shutout in a 11-0 victory.

    Here's Gipson's final line:
    9ip 5h 0r 0er 2bb 10so

    He threw 75 strikes out of 115 pitches and there were only two innings where a
    runner got past first base.

    It was the first shutout for Gipson in his career and his third complete game.

    His performance probably topped the seven-inning relief appearance by Ryan Garton at Troy, but it's amazing that the season is barely a month old and there have already been two outings like this.

    Owl Links
    Your daily guide to what's being written about the Owls was at the ballpark from first pitch to final out and provided this recap and photo gallery.

    We'll be at FAU Stadium for the final game of the three game series at 1 p.m. If you can't be there follow our Twitter updates and also listen at where you will hear yours truly in the bottom of the seventh inning along with play-by-play announcer Jared Smith during every home game.

    Owl Cal
    Your calendar to FAU events

    1 p.m. Baseball, Arkansas-Little Rock at FAU
    FAU shows mercy vs, Trojans

    As far as walkoff hits go, it probably wasn't what FAU outfielder Andy Mee had in mind.

    The same goes for pitcher Kevin Alexander, who didn't throw your garden variety complete game against UALR on Sunday.

    What made Mee's hit and Alexander's victory strange was the Sun Belt Conference 10-run rule, which is only in effect on Sunday games.

    Like many on Sunday, I wasn't too familar with the rule, but I am going to plead that I have an excuse - it hasnt come into play very often for FAU in the regular season.

    Owl fans know the rule from last season's Sun Belt Conference Tournament when FAU won a game and lost a game brought to an early end by the 10-run rule.

    I went to the archives and found that the Owls' last regular-season game called early because of the 10-run rule was on April 13, 2008 when FAU 10-runned Troy 17-6 in six innings.

    So here's a a few details on what the rule meant. No doubt fans left the ballpark thinking FAU won 13-1. However, the game was, in fact, over once Mike Albaladejo crossed the plate to give FAU a 10-run advantage, making the final score was 11-1.

    The rule also changed what would have been Mee's 3-RBI double to a single with one RBI.

    Regardless, I'm sure Mee will take the victory.

    Owl Links
    Your daily guide to what's being written about the Owls was at Sunday's game from start to finish and had this recap, video and photo gallery.

    Check back later today as we help you kickoff your week by bringing you a football story every Monday. We'll also have a preview of the baseball series vs. Cornell.

  • The Palm Beach Post has a profile with incoming FAU President Mary Jane Saunders

    Owl Cal
    Your calendar to FAU events

    6:30 p.m. Baseball, Cornell at FAU

    6:30 p.m. Baseball, Cornell at FAU
  • Problems mount for Everist

    FAU starting pitcher Taylor Everist didn't make it out of the first inning of the Owls' 16-6 loss to UALR on Friday. It was his second short outing in the opening of a Sun Belt series in the span of a week, there are many who have given up on the junior college transfer.

    FAU coach John McCormack isn't one of those who have seen enough of Everist and neither am I.

    I do think it might be time to forgo the experiment of having Everist throw on Friday nights, which is when most teams throw their ace.

    FAU's ace, however is clearly Mike Gipson, who has stated on Saturday' and will start today's game vs. UALR.

    After six starts for Everist (1-4, 6.95) this season it's obvious Gipson (3-0, 2.42) needs to be throwing in the opening game of the Sun Belt Conference series.

    It would help the team and it would help Everist, who would have a better chance of winning on Saturday.

    Remember that even a few days before the season began Gipson was to start the opener. However, McCormack decided to go with Everist, who hadn't thrown in a Division I game.

    It was a curious decision, but looked to be sound when Everist had a few good outings, but didn't get much run support. However, lately Everist has gotten support and hasn't been able to capitalize on it.

    EWverist can still be a valuable part of the rotation, and for FAU;s sake he better be. However, he needs to be doing it on Saturdays or Sundays and not in the pressure-cooker of Friday nights.

    Owl Links
    Your daily guide to what's being written about the Owls

    It was total team coverage of UALR's 16-6 victory at with a recap, video and photo gallery from the game.

    We'll be at the ballpark for today's game as well.

    Owl Cal
    Your calendar to FAU events

    4 p.m. Baseball, UALR at FAU

    1 p.m. Baseball, UALR at FAU
    If your bracket is in shambles, you have company

    All those who base your March Madness picks based on the colors of the teams or the fierceness of a school's mascot can rejoice today.

    Your bracket is probably still intact.

    Anyone that picked teams based on ability is probably throwing their brackets in the trash right about now.

    And that may include one expert, Mike Jarvis, and one self-proclaimed expert, our own Chuck King. Both had Georgetown, which bowed out in the first round, winning it all.

    Such is life in March Madness when underdog after underdog came through Thursday - except North Texas, of course. The Mean Green did the expected job of a team seeded No. 15 and laid down vs. Kansas State, representing what the Sun Belt Conference was all about this season.

    Anyway, we had 18 people sign up for the bracket contest. It was good to see some of our subscribers step up to the challenge. It was also good to see a couple of former FAU athletes sign up including former defensive back Cameron Rodgers and a man who knows about the NCAA Tournament first hand, Jeff Cowans. Cowans was a guard on the FAU team that made it to the NCAA Tournament in 2002 and scored nine points vs. Alabama. Boy, were those great days.

    Also of note, if Chuck or myself wins a prize in the contest, we will of course, recuse ourselves and the next place finisher will be moved up, but we will keep our bragging rights.

    On second glance at the standings, there is very little chance of that happening, but you never know.

    Owl Links
    Your daily guide to what's being written about the Owls

    At we had the first installment of Owl Talk with Brian Rowitz, who broke the news that FAU coach Howard Schnellenberger is looking for a new defensive tackles coach and wants Rod Payne concentrating on his duties as strength and conditioning coach.

    We also had a preview of the FAU-UALR baseball series starting tonight.

  • FAU's student newspaper, the University Press, lands an interview with incoming President Mary Jane Saunders. Check out her comments on the proposed football stadium.

  • Here's a preview of the baseball series from the Sun-Sentinel.
  • Check out coverage of Sun Belt Champ North Texas' loss vs. Kansas State in the Denton Record-Chronicle

  • FAU softball cracks the Owl Links. Read about the controversy in last night's game vs. Iowa that prompted a 45-minute delay with the game eventually being played under protest by the Hawkeyes.

    Owl Cal
    Your calendar to FAU events

    6:30 p.m. Baseball, UALR at FAU

    4 p.m. Baseball, UALR at FAU

    1 p.m. Baseball, UALR at FAU
  • FAU fans will love Owl Talk with Brian Rowitz
    In case you haven't noticed, Owl Talk with Brian Rowitz had a pretty decent debut this morning on as he broke the story that there will be a new defensive line coach for the Owls as Rod Payne will now concentrate on strength and conditioning duties.

    Rowitz also talked with FAU junior guard Sanchez Hughley about his return to the team next season after all he has been through in his career at FAU.

    Thrown in an interview with baseball's Nick DelGuidice and softball's Blair Bodenmiller, who is truly the epitome of a student-athlete and you really have a home run of a show.

    I cant wait to see what's next from Rowitz.

    For those who aren't familiar with him here's a little bit about him.

    Rowitz began hosting the FAU Sports Hour in July 2007 on FAU’s student radio station. The first show got started with Howard Schnellenberger and Rusty Smith talking about their upcoming Sun Belt championship season. Throughout the past year plus the show has grown to having guests from nearly every FAU sport, coaches from opposing teams during football season and even being on site during last years Spring Game.

    Rowitz has been the host of the show for its entire run and has done his best to expand the coverage of FAU athletics. Brian traveled with the team on multiple occasions while handling student radio duties and provided play by play to the Boca Raton campus for road games such as UF and Troy in 2007. Brian now is a part of the ESPN 760 team and runs the FAU on Demand page of while traveling with the team as the radio engineer for football.

    You've come to expect informative and entertaining articles, blogs and video from, now we hope you'll enjoy some top quality audio as well from Rowitz.

    Owl Links
    What's being written about the Owls
    Have you joined's March Madness contest on Facebook? The deadline is noon today so hurry. And if you need help filling out your bracket we have a team of experts assembled, starting off with none other than FAU coach Mike Jarvis who helped us break down the bracket.

    We also had coverage of the baseball team's 2-0 loss to Rutgers on St. Patrick's Day. The Owls lost, but it was still a fun night at the ballpark with the green caps, Irish flag on the bases and the players announced as Andy "Mc"Mee and Anthony "O'" Mesa.

    After, not much was done on St. Paddy's Day last year, former FAU baseball coach Kevin Cooney would have been proud on Wednesday.

    Owl Cal
    6:30 p.m. Baseball, UALR at FAU
    FAU getting Irish at ballpark
    Isn't Ireland like Seattle in that it's always raining? Well then this weather could serve to get FAU baseball fans ready for tonight's touch of Ireland at the ballpark.

    FAU will be wearing green hats and flying the flag of Ireland for tonight's 6:30 p.m. first pitch against Rutgers. There will also be Irish flags painted on the bases, rubber and even home plate.

    I tried to get FAU baseball coach John McCormack to take it a step further by hosting a pregame snake-driving contest, where FAU administrators set about 100 snakes loose in the infield and fans dressed like St. Patrick drive them out of the ballpark. McCormack told me that was a really good idea - though he did so in much the same tone he would use had I suggested he put his hand in a paper shredder.

    We also kicked around the idea of offering free admission to anyone who brings a snake to the ballpark, but alas there was not enough time to set that promotion up. Could be a revenue source for next year though: People get in free. Snakes $10.

    In any event, this rain looks like it might get out of town by mid-afternoon so I'm expecting plenty of fans with green shirts and hair, and lots of guiness and green hot dogs at the tailgates. On second thought, I might pass on the green hot dogs...

    Hoop it up: Don't forget to join out NCAA bracket pool. Here's the link. We're offering some pretty cool prizes, especially if you like golf (Hey, that's green!)

    First place
    • $40 gift card to Duffy's
    • Two rounds of golf at Binks Forest Golf Club
    • An annual membership to (a $69.50 value) plus our 2009 football season highlights DVD (a $19.95 value)

    Second place
    • Second prize is $20 to Miller's Ale House on Yamato Road
    • Two rounds of golf at Binks Forest Golf Club plus the membership and DVD
    • An annual membership to plus our 2009 football season highlights DVD

    Third place
    • Two rounds of golf at Binks Forest Golf Club
    • An annual membership to and the 2009 football highlights DVD

    Owl Links
    Your daily guide to what is being written about FAU attended the baseball game in full force. Here's our game story. And this is the highlight video, which includes some really impressive pitching performances from Barry Rooks and Mike Ruccio. If those guys can throw like that all year, The Belt better look out.

    Owl Cal
    A daily calendar of FAU events

    Baseball - Rutgers at FAU, 6:30 p.m.
    FAU's Everist getting work; Alvarez can use full array
    Normal Friday starter Taylor Everist isn't being demoted. After his shortest outing of the year on Friday, he’s throwing today in place of his normal bullpen session. Expect Everist to throw somewhere in the neighborhood of 40 pitches (about two innings) tonight.

    Fans can also expect Barry Rooks to make his first appearance for the Owls today, likely getting an inning of work.

    Rooks, a lefty, posted a 3-2 record with a 5.46 ERA while starting in nine of 14 appearances last season. He could become a lefty specialist out of the pen.

    "We'd like to use him on the weekends to get that good left-handed hitter out in the other dugout," McCormack said.

    If R. J. Alvarez looks a little bit different on Wednesday, it will be because FAU coaches are loosening the reins. Coaches were being careful with Alvarez early in the season after the freshman experienced pre-season arm soreness.

    Alvarez had been limited to an inning of work in most of his early appearances and wasn’t allowed to throw breaking balls – which you can kind of get away with if your fastball hits 95 as Alvarez’s does. He mixed in some breaking balls over the weekend at Troy and will have even more freedom on Wednesday, when his outing should last for 60 or so pitches.

    Owl Links Your Daily guide to what is being written about FAU

    At we produced the first of our weekly Monday football features, highlighting Lakeland-Kathleen wide receiver Jacques Mackeroy.

    We also provided an update on the stadium, which seems to be progressing at the expected rate and had a preview of today's baseball game.

    Owl Cal
    A calendar of FAU events
    6:30 p.m. Baseball, Rutgers at FAU
    5 p.m. Softball, Iowa at FAU

    6:30 p.m. Baseball, Rutgers at FAU

    South Florida double-header; FAU closer Troyanowski to see Dr. James Andrews
    JUPITER – While I’m a big fan of mid-week afternoon baseball, there are some advantages to night college baseball games. I’m enjoying one of them now.

    One of my fun little side gigs from February into April entails covering St. Louis Cardinals spring training baseball for the Associated Press. The Cardinals play host to Washington today at Roger Dean for a 1 p.m. first pitch today, which means that if everything goes smoothly the story will be filed in plenty of time for me to be in Boca Raton for this evening’s first pitch of the Rutgers vs. FAU game.

    It’s kind of a unique doubleheader – one that only baseball fans in Florida and Arizona can experience. I know that members of Andy Mee’s household have been known to hit spring training and an FAU game in the same day. Anyone else ever do the double dip?
    Birmingham bound: One of the players we won’t be seeing in action today is FAU closer Glen Troyanowski. The FAU closer has been shelved since the second weekend of the season with a sore shoulder. Now, he’s got a date with the doctor no pitcher wants to see. Troyanowski has a March 25 appointment with famed surgeon Dr. James Andrews to check that shoulder.

    “I’m curious to hear what Andrews has to say about it as far as, this is what it is and this is what we have to do to fix it,” FAU coach John McCormack said.

    Those visits rarely end well. The concern is labrum damage. Even if Troyanowski avoids surgery, he will likely miss significant time.

    The aforementioned Andy Mee has assumed the closer role in Troyanowski’s absence. On Saturday at Troy he blew his lone save attempt, but stayed in the game for an extra two innings to earn the win.
    Jarvis says Hughley's return is possible

    FAU coach Mike Jarvis met with the media on Monday to recap the season and there were a few interesting tidbits out of the discussion.

    The most surprising was when the subject of junior guard Sanchez Hughley came up and Jarvis said that Hughely coming back next season was "possible."

    Jarvis said he may know more after scheduled meetings with each player, which began Monday, are over.

    "It's possible he'll be back," Jarvis said. "It's always possible. It's going to depend a lot on Sanchez. I haven't met with him yet, but as of right now he is."

    That doesn't sound quite as definitive as when Jarvis indicated a few weeks ago that Hughley would be back after he graduates later this year.
    Weekly football report starts today

    There are parts of the country, especially in the football-crazed South, where the three seasons are football, spring football and recruiting.

    Who are they kidding?

    In the last few years it seems that football is now simply a year-round sport.

    There's the season and the off-season. And believe, me plenty goes on during the off-season including off-season conditioning, voluntary workouts and a recruiting process that seems start earlier and earlier each season.

    Like most fans across the nation, Owl fans want news on their football team year-round not just during the fall.

    That's why we are giving FAU fans a new way to kickoff your week.

    Beginning today you can count on a weekly report on FAU football on Mondays on

    We'll have recruiting news, news about the stadium, player updates and plenty more as continues to bring you the most in-depth and up-to-date coverage of FAU football.

    We're not changing our slogan to "Owl Football All the Time" even though that is pretty catchy. We'll still bring you our unmatched coverage of baseball and basketball, but we want to take our coverage of FAU football to the next level.

    We hope you'll like to kickoff each week with news on FAU football.

    Owl Links
    Your daily guide to what's being written about the Owls

    We gave this report on the Owls' loss at Troy on Sunday and we'll kickoff the week with some football news later today.

    Owl Cal
    Your calendar of FAU events

    6 p.m. FAU SportsPage with Mike Jarvis, Boston's on the Beach (ESPN 760,

    6:30 p.m. Baseball, Rutgers at FAU

    6:30 p.m. Baseball, Rutgers at FAU
    Join's bracket contest

    I am channelling my inner Joe Lunardi and will make this prediction: FAU will not receive an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament this year.

    But I know FAU fans will still follow the tournament closely and FAUOwlAccess wants to help.

    That's right, is holding our first annual March Madness bracket contest on Facebook. Test your wits against other Owl fans and against our hoops experts - Chuck King and myself, Marcus Nelson.

    It's free to enter and we have some cool valuable prizes as well...

    First place
  • $40 gift card to Duffy's
  • Two rounds of golf at Binks Forest Golf Club
  • An annual membership to (a $69.50 value) plus our 2009 football season highlights DVD (a $19.95 value)

    Second place
  • Second prize is $20 to Miller's Ale House on Yamato Road
  • Two rounds of golf at Binks Forest Golf Club plus the membership and DVD
  • An annual membership to plus our 2009 football season highlights DVD

    Third place
  • Two rounds of golf at Binks Forest Golf Club
  • An annual membership to and the 2009 football highlights DVD

    Here's how to enter...

    Click here or visit us on Facebook at and fill out your bracket.

    Due to NCAA regulations, current student-athletes or FAU athletic department staff members may not participate.

    Good luck to all those that enter. This should be a lot of fun.

    Owl Links
    Your daily guide to what's being written about the Owls had this recap of Saturday's 11 inning victory at Troy and will be providing updates on the game today.

    Owl Cal
    Your calendar to FAU events

    2 p.m. Baseball, FAU at Troy
  • Garton was on vs. Troy

    FAU received one of the top pitching performances in recent memory in Friday's 13-8 victory vs. Troy. It came from an unlikely source.

    Starter Taylor Everist was finally given some run support, but he didn't respond to the help.

    After a grand slam by Dan Scheffler gave the Owls a 8-0 lead in the second, Everist went out in the the bottom of the second and walked the lead-off hitter before giving up a homer. Everist didn't see the end of the inning and was replaced by Ryan Garton. All Garton did was pitch until there were two outs in the ninth, saving the Owls bullpen for the rest of the series.

    I don't think we'll see Garton again this series - not after throwing 122 pitches in 7 innings and striking out an FAU season-high 11 batters.

    It wasn't a starting assignment, but it seemed like one and brought to mind Michael Obadovich's 8-inning gem in FAU's 6-3 victory vs. No. 1 Miami in 2008 and Mickey Storey's no-hitter vs. Campbell in 2006.

    I expect we'll see more of Garton soon.

  • Hughley nominated for award: The V Foundation for Cancer Research has named Sanchez Hughley a finalist for the tenth annual V Foundation Comeback Award. Click here for more.

    Owl Links
    Your daily guide to what's being written about the Owls had this recap of the game and will have coverage of tonight's game as well.

    Owl Cal
    Your calendar to FAU events
    7 p.m. Baseball, FAU at Troy

    2 p.m. Baseball, FAU at Troy
  • Baseball team has tough travel to Troy

    The FAU baseball team didn't hang around the dugout Wednesday celebrating after rallying to defeat Pittsburgh.
    In fact, the team's demeanor was a tad subdued.
    I guess that is what happens when you are staring a long bus trip to Troy in the face.
    The trip is so long, FAU took two days to make the trek, leaving immediately after the game vs. Pitt on Wednesday for Friday's game.
    The team was to stay the night around Lake City and finish the trip to Troy on Thursday.
    But the Owls should be used to it. Almost two weeks ago, FAU did almost the exact same thing when it played three games in Auburn, which is close to Troy.
    While the trip up probably wasn't fun, how well the Owls play vs. Troy this weekend will dictate how the trip home goes. If FAU plays well, the trip won't seem so bad. If FAU gets swept, like it did last season, it will be a horrible ride home.
    Owl Links had a preview of the series vs. Troy and will be providing updates during each game this weekend.
  • Troy is shaking up its rotation for this weekend, according to the Dothan Eagle.
    Owl Cal
    7 p.m. Baseball, FAU at Troy
    7 p.m. Baseball, FAU at Troy
  • FAU holding own against Big East, ACC
    Wednesday's game vs. Pitt may have looked like a typical midweek game. It certainly felt like a typical midweek game.

    The only thing atypical was it was played in the afternoon in front of a small crowd. All of which just contributed to the Owls coming out a little flat.

    However, FAU woke up and scored five runs in the sixth and rallied to break a 7-7 tie by striking for three runs in the eighth inning.

    Of course by then FAU was pumped up - and why not?

    By defeating the Panthers, the Owls have won three games in a row. Two victories against the ACC's Boston College and the Big East's Pittsburgh is a pretty good accomplishment. And don't forget the Owls took 2-of-3 from Cincinnati in the season opening series.

    Going 3-1 against the Big East and 3-1 against the ACC are the kind of results the NCAA will look at it late May when it's time to make at-large selections.

    Am I saying the Owls are ready to be in that situation? Not just yet. As we saw through the first five innings, the hitting still needs to be consistent. Also, the bullpen is still a work in progress as long as closer Glen Troyanowski, who isn't making the trip to Troy this weekend, is on the shelf.

    However, it looks like the Owls aren't that far away from having a team that could be poised to be sniffing a possible NCAA bid if injuries don't multiply and the hitting gets in a groove.

    It may be stretch, but the Owls (6-4) have already won some big games this season, and that's a positive sign.

    Owl Links
    Your daily guide to what's being written about the Owls was at the balpark on Wednesday and had this recap of the game.

    Owl Cal
    Your calendar to FAU events
    7 p.m. Baseball, FAU at Troy
    Banks interest is good sign for FAU football stadium
    As first reported Tuesday night, there were six proposals submitted to help with the financing received by FAU by Tuesday's deadline.

    This may be one of the most positive developments in this long and arduous quest for the Owls to play football on campus.

    As Craig Angelos indicated Tuesday, the devil is in the details, but FAU is optimistic it will be able to work with one of the institutions which showed interest.

    Prediction: FAU will be able to swallow the terms of at least one of these banks.

    FAU is kind of like a customer on a used car lot whose car just got totalled. They really don't have a choice but to accept the best deal on the table at the time.

    When I talked to Angelos there was almost a dread that he would tell me no proposals were received. Instead by receiving six responses, it shows that someone with financial acumen shares Howard Schnellenberger's belief in the viability of the stadium and FAU football.

    Owl Links
    Your daily guide to what's being written about the Owls

    FAUOwlAccess.con not only had the story on the stadium, but also a preview of today's baseball game vs. Pittsburgh.

    Nothing FAU-related in the local papers, but here are some items of interest from around the Sun Belt.

  • Here's the story from the Dothan Eagle on North Texas winning the Sun Belt championship defeating Troy, which will go to the NIT.

    Owl Cal
    Your calendar to FAU events
    2 p.m. Baseball, Pittsburgh at FAU
  • Check out The Lafayatte Daily Advertiser's coverage of ULL's firing of coach Robert Lee.
  • FAU SS DelGuidice earns national POW honor
    When the Sun Belt Conference names its baseball Player of the Week later today, the name should be familiar to FAU fans. Owls shortstop Nick DelGuidice has already been named one of four Louisville Slugger national Players of the Week after he put together a monster weekend, going 8-for-11 with two home runs and13 RBIs against Boston College.

    Anytime a player can start every game of a weekend series and tally more RBIs than official at-bats, he's done something pretty remarkable. DelGuidice's big day was Saturday, when his nine RBIs broke Gary Kamphouse's FAU single-game record of eight.

    DelGuidice (photo) followed that 4-for-4 performance in FAU's 15-6 win, with a 3-for-3, four RBI afternoon in Sunday's 11-7 victory.

    I had more than one Boston College fan comment that DelGuidice swung one heck of a bat. While that may be true, he hadn't shown it this season. DelGuidice entered the weekend 3-for-23 in the first six games of the season, without a home run or RBI.

    Can he keep it up? Doubtful. No one can be expected to keep up that pace. But FAU coach John McCormack wouldn't mind seeing a few more weekends like that once conference play begins this weekend.

    "Don't wake him up. No one talk to him. Leave him alone," McCormack said following Sunday's game. "Maybe we'll get a player of the week out of that."

    Amen to that.

    A few more thoughts from the weekend:

    > Leadoff hitter Mike Albaladejo only scratched out two hits over the weekend, but he still made his presence felt. The diminutive Albaladejo threw out five potential base stealers over the weekend - four on Friday night alone.

    "I think (the Eagles) like to be aggressive and he shut that down," McCormack said.

    > First baseman Dan Sheffler has the opposite problem. His .448 average leads the Owls, as do his three home runs. Unfortunately, Scheffler's also committed a team-high four errors, and that doesn't count a couple of missed routine pop flies that fell untouched. McCormack still considers Scheffler to be an "above-average defensive first baseman." He'll have to start showing that skill soon, or McCormack may turn to Sean Bukovich as a late-inning defensive replacement.

    > The Owls didn't miss closer Glen Troyanowski over the weekend - no games were tight enough to need a closer. FAU should learn more about Troyanowski's ailing shoulder and his availabilty for the upcoming weekend on Tuesday. Andy Mee would have filled the closer role against Boston College. Since he didn't pitch against BC, McCormack intends to throw Mee for one inning against Pittsburgh on Wednesday, regardless of the score.

    > Anthony Mesa went 0-for-4 on Sunday, snapping a seven-game hitting streak. He's hitting .357 - not bad for a No. 9 hitter.

    Owl Links A daily guide to what is being written about FAU's Marcus Nelson returned from being the only local media member to cover the Sun Belt Conference basketball tournament and offered this analysis of the Owls' season.

    Owl Cal
    A calendar of FAU athletic events

    2 p.m. Baseball - Pittsburgh vs. FAU
    6 p.m. Softball - WKU vs. FAU
    8 p.m. Softball - WKU vs. FAU

    FAU runs out of gas at the end

    HOT SPRINGS, Ark. - FAU junior forward Sanchez Hughley was hurting so bad he couldn't even answer the call for the second half in the Owls' loss to South Alabama on Saturday.

    Hughley was just an extreme example of why FAU's season came to an unceremonious end in the first round of the Sun Belt Tournament on Saturday.

    It's a simple explanation: Down the stretch, the team wore down.

    Ray Taylor was talking about it last week when he told FAUOwlAccess he was feeling so tired last week he closed his eyes for a 20-minute power nap and woke up five hours later.

    Every team in the nation is battling the rigors of a season that started in November.

    However, FAU's top offensive weapons, Taylor and Greg Gantt, were freshman whose bodies were still making the transition to college basketball games (40 minutes instead of 32 minutes in high school) and the rigors and travel of their first full season in Division I.

    Further proof: FAU had 22 points in the first half vs, Middle Tennessee last week and then went even worse with 19 at halftime vs. South Alabama.

    Folks, it's no coincidence FAU's two worst halves of basketball happened in the last two games and the Owls lost their last four games of the season.

    Speaking of Hughley, I asked FAU coach Mike Jarvis about Hughley only playing four minutes in the second half.

    His response was interesting.

    "He wasn't going," Jarvis said. "He was playing lousy. If you play lousy , you sit on the bench. It's that simple whether you have an injury or not. He's got injuries, but most guys have injuries this time in the season. I decided to play the guys in the second half who were getting it done. The guys that we had the best chance to win with. That's why he was on the bench most of it. I asked if he could play the last quarter. He said yes and he should have gone in and been the hero, but it wasn't meant to be."

    Hughley played just four minutes in the second half and finished with just four points.

    Well, the whole team now has the next eight months to rest.

    Owl Links
    Your daily guide to what's being written about the Owls

    The hoops season is over so we can turn undivided attention to the baseball team, which beat Boston College on Sunday. Check out out recap, photo gallery and video highlights.

    Owl Cal
    Your calendar to FAU events
    2 p.m. Baseball, Pittsburgh at FAU
    No FAU fans in Hot Springs

    HOT SPRINGS, Ark. - There were plenty of fans in blue and red at the Summit Arena for the Sun Belt Conference Tournament here on Saturday.

    Nice of fans of Middle Tennessee and Western Kentucky to show up.

    Too bad, the same can't be said of FAU fans.

    I won't say there weren't many there. I don't think there were any there. That's right. Zilch. Nada.

    A women's basketball player's parents were there as was Mike Jarvis' wife, Connie.

    Throw in a few members of the dance team and a few administrators (and of course, myself) and that was it, from what I saw. Some players on the FAU women's team (pictured) were among the few sitting behind the FAU bench during the loss to South Alabama.

    Oh, I know it's hard to get here and it's far away and all the other excuses.

    Save it.

    FAU fans have nothing to explain to me. They had better things to do. I get it.

    Instead, FAU fans should save the litany of excuses for the ADs and presidents of Conference USA and the Big East and all the other conferences some fans believe FAU will be invited to in the coming years.

    Conferences look at things like how well does a team travel and when not one fan cared enough to follow their team to the conference tournament, I hardly see conferences falling over themselves to lock up the Owls.

    At times this season, FAU had good crowd support and it looked like more fans were coming to games.

    However, this is Division I athletics and it's time for FAU fans start thinking about getting serious about supporting their program. Having some representation at the annual conference tournament, which fans of the other Sun Belt schools found a way to do this weekend, would be a nice start.

    Owl Links
    Your daily guide to what's being written about the Owls

    As I mentioned, was in Hot Springs, Ark. for the tournament and here is my report along with a photo gallery of the action. As everyone knows it was a short stay by the both the men's and women's teams.

    Back in Boca Raton, Chuck King was at the baseball game where at least he was around happy Owl fans after the baseball team pounded Boston College 15-6. He also had a video highlights package of the big game by Nick DelGuidice, who set a school record with 9 RBI.

  • The Mobile Press Register was in Hot Springs as well and had this recap of the game

    Owl Cal
    Your calendar to FAU events
    1 p.m. Baseball, Boston College at FAU, FAU Stadium
  • Owls high tail it out of Hot Springs

    HOT SPRINGS, Ark. - Of all the possible scenarios, seeing both the FAU men's and women's basketball teams miss shots at the buzzer and go down in the first round of their respective Sun Belt Conference tournaments was pretty unlikely.

    Of course, that's exactly what happened. So all of the Owl fans who didn't make it to Hot Springs, Ark. (by my count it was all of them) may have saved themselves the aggravation of watching their teams falter.

    Perhaps that's to be expected when both the leading scorers for the men's and women's teams had days they would like to forget.

    Brittany Bowe only scored three points as the women lost to New Orleans 51-50 and Greg Gantt scored 12 points, but was 5-of-20 from the field in the 52-51 loss to South Alabama.

    It would have been pretty unlikely for both - or even one - of the teams to win the tournament, but I am floored to see both bow out on the first day of the event.

    There will be plenty of time to dissect the seasons that just ended, but for now it's time to join what appears to be a mass exodus from Hot Springs back to Boca Raton.
    Nothing second rate about second court

    HOT SPRINGS, Ark. - Want to know something unique about the Sun Belt Conference Tournament here?

    It's the largest combined (men and women) field of any tournament at one site in the nation.

    So large in fact that it requires two courts at the site. Most games will be at Summitt Arena, but there is another court at the adjacent Convention Center.

    And the FAU women will play in the first game played on the Convention Center Court in their first-round game vs. New Orleans.

    An auxillary court usually means trouble, but I'm here for the morning tip and the set-up is quite nice.
    FAU has arrived in Arkansas

    HOT SPRINGS, Ark. - When the FAU basketball team made its travel plans it didn't know it would be playing in the 2:15 p.m. (local time) game.

    Otherwise it probably wouldn't have planned to arrive in Little Rock around 8 p.m. and then have to make the hours drive to Hot Springs.

    But the team is here and ready for Saturday's game vs. the Jaguars.

    Here's a shot of the team arriving at the Little Rock National Airport where they were greeted by a welcoming part of myself and radio play-by-play voice Ken LaVicka. As you can guess, they were thrilled.

    The FAU dance team and Owsley also have made it to Arkansas.

    Remember, the women's basketball team will play early (10 a.m. local) so I'll have some more photos of the scene here in Hot Springs then.
    This is the year an Owl is drafted

    In what seems to be an annual occurrence, everyone was downright giddy after FAU seniors lifted, ran and did something called the V-Tech in front of NFL scouts on Thursday.

    Maybe I'm getting caught up in the hoopla, but this looks like the year FAU finally has a player drafted. This time I mean it.

    Last year, it looked like linebacker Frantz Joseph was a lock to have his name called, but it wasn't to be.

    This season, there are a few options and the odds are better than before we might get to hear Mel Kiper talk about an Owl.

    Take quarterback Rusty Smith. Smith has already locked up a workout with the Dolphins next month and could have many more especially after his solid performance Thursday.

    Showing off his shorter throwing motion, Smith looked comfortable and maybe even looked better than before his October injury to his non-throwing shoulder. Most impressive was his accuracy on a breezy day.

    Remember when Howard Schnellenberger declared Smith destined to be a first-round pick? OK, that's not going to happen, but I dint think it's too big of a stretch to think Smith could be drafted in the late rounds by a team gambling that Smith will come into his own and cut down on interceptions with his new delivery.

    Do you remember when Jason Harmon used to be tight end don't you? Thursday was the day he officially became a halfback-receiver as that's what scouts project him to be. It will be an easy transition for Harmon because it's speed and his hands which have always been his best attributes.

    Harmon didn't have the best Pro Day, but he's fortunate that he worked out for scouts at the Texas vs. Nation game.

    Also, I was skeptical about fullback Willie Rose's chances until I saw his performance on Thursday. He definitely made an impression on the scouts that were there as he was asked to go through extra drills so they could evaluate him some more.

    If Rose can keep working hard, he could wind up getting a few tryouts as well.

    I'm going out on a limb - something I rarely do, but I expect an Owl to be drafted this season, breaking a drought that has gone on for way too long.

    Owl Links
    What's being written about the Owls was out at the Pro Day all day and provided this recap along with video highlights, photosand an easy-to-read compilation of how each player's official results.

    We also have a preview of the home baseball series with Boston College this weekend.

    Owl Cal
    Your calendar to FAU events
    6:30 p.m., Baseball: Boston College at FAU

    11 a.m. Women's Hoops: FAU vs. New Orleans, Sun Belt Conference Tournament, Hot Springs, Ark.
    2 p.m. Hoops: FAU vs. South Alabama, Sun Belt Conference Tournament, Hot Springs, Ark.
    4 p.m. Baseball: Boston College at FAU

    1 p.m., Baseball: Boston College at FAU
    FAU closer Troyanowski to miss weekend series
    A sore shoulder will keep Florida Atlantic closer Glen Troyanowski off the mound when Boston College comes to town for a weekend series that begins on Friday.

    Despite hitting 92 mph during last weekend's Auburn tournament, Troyanowski experienced soreness in his throwing shoulder, FAU coach John McCormack said.

    Troyanowski may have an MRI or X-rays in the coming days.

    The right-hander owns the only save for FAU this season. He took over the closer's role midway through last season, earning a team-high six saves.

    Junior college transfer Andy Mee will take over ninth inning duties this weekend, with Hugh Adams and Ryan Garton serving as set-up men.

    Video of Smith working on last minute touches before Pro Day
    We are the first ones here at the Oxley Center where FAU's Pro Day is under way. Scouts from 14 different teams have already signed in, and that doesn't count those who may have arrived before the sign-in sheet was placed at the front door. Expect the number to rise before the day ends.

    The players are getting measured and doing their weightlifting, now. Those procedures are done behind the prying eyes of the media. The players don't start the activities on the track until 10.

    To tide you over, here is video of Rusty Smith's new delivery. Smith, Jason Harmon and independent quarterback coach George Whitfield took to the track last night to practice the exercises they will run through on Thursday. The difference in Smith's motion is easily spotted.

    We'll be here to bring updates, so check back frequently.

    Owl Links
    Your daily guide to what is being written about FAU

    At, we brought an in depth look at what Smith has done to revamp his delivery.

    Owl Cal
    A look at FAU's calendar of events

    8 a.m. Football Pro Day
    Jarvis still in favor of new SBC Tournament format
    If the Sun Belt Conference had kept the format it has used since 2007, FAU would be playing a home game tonight vs. the South Alabama Jaguars in the first-round of the Sun Belt Conference Tournament.

    Instead, the Owls and Jaguars will head to Hot Springs, Ark. to fight for the right to survive. The reward is to play again the next day instead of what would have been a few days of rest.

    When I talked to Mike Jarvis on Tuesday, I remembered that when the Sun Belt Conference announced a few months ago there would no longer be first-round games on campus sites he was in favor of the change.

    I expected him to have a change of heart when I asked him Tuesday about the format change. After all, FAU could certainly use a few days of rest between its first-round game and a quarterfinal matchup vs. Troy.

    Instead Jarvis reiterated his support of having everyone play in Hot Springs,

    "This how it should be played," Jarvis said. "All the kids deserve to play in a tournament atmosphere...I'm still in favor of it."

    I agree with Jarvis. Those first-round games at campus sites didn't feel like post-season basketball. Instead those game felt like an extension of the regular-season with the winners going on to the "real" tournament.

    Owl Links
    Your daily guide to what's being written about the Owls

    At we are getting your ready for Thursday's Pro Day with this story on tight end Jason Harmon, fullback Willie Rose and offensive lineman David Matlock all working out together in Lakeland to get ready for their workout in front of NFL scouts on Thursday.

    We also had the news that Brett Royster was named the Sun Belt Conference Defensive Player of the Year and freshman guards Ray Taylor and Greg Gantt were named to All-Sun Belt Conference third team.

    Owl Cal
    Your calendar to FAU events

    9 a.m. FAU Pro Day
    FAU guard Gantt won't be SBC Freshman of the Year
    OK Owl fans - of all the freshman on this FAU basketball squad, who's had the best year? It pretty much comes down to Ray Taylor and Greg Gantt, right?

    I think there is a very good case to be made that Gantt (photo), who finished sixth in the Sun Belt in scoring, was the most important. FAU won games where Taylor had off nights because Alex Tucker was there to pick up the slack. The Owls didn't win too many when Gantt didn't score.

    I can tell you this, though. Gantt won't be the Sun Belt's Freshman of the Year. He's not even one of the six players on the ballot, which offered the choices of Taylor, Arkansas State's Brandon Reed, Denver's Chase Hallam, MTSU's Greg Gallman, South Alabama's Martino Brock and Western Kentucky's Caden Dickerson.

    Gantt averaged 15.7 points per game. Taylor (14.4) wasn't too far behind, taking 11th. Taylor also led the Belt with 6.1 assists per game, a stat that FAU coach Mike Jarvis believes pushes Taylor ahead of Gantt in the competition.

    "I think Greg has had a fantastic year," Jarvis said on Monday night. "Greg has probably been more one dimensional then Ray. Greg probably would not have had the year he had without Ray. So I guess the question would be, who probably helped the other player the most? The answer honestly to that I'd have to say would be Ray helped Gantt more than Gantt helped Ray."

    That's a fair argument, and it's probably a good thing for FAU that voters don't have to make that choice. Having only one Owl on the ballot increases the possibility that an FAU player will nab the award. It's possible that voters who work for/cover East Division teams would split their votes between Gantt and Taylor, while voters from the West Division could solidly fall behind Hallam, allowing the Pioneer to claim an award he really doesn't deserve.

    Given the choices presented, Taylor should win the award easily. Yes, he got my vote. I don't know that would have beem the case were Gantt on the ballot.

    Top five: For those wondering, here's how my First Team All-Sun Belt ballot looked:
    A.J Slaughter (WKU), Tyren Johnson (ULL), George Odufuwa (NT), Brandon Hazzard (Troy) and Desmond "Boogie" Yates (MTSU). Yep, no Owls. Did I make a mistake leaving an FAU player off the list?

    "Honestly, I don't think we have anybody right now that is first team All-Sun Belt this year," Jarvis said. "Do we have a lot of really good players? Could we play with anybody? Yeah. But we don't have a first team All-Sun Belt player this year. I think there are five or six guys in the league that are better than anybody we've got."

    Jarvis didn't say who his top five are, but we are in agreement that Slaughter should easily win the Player of the Year Award.

    "If he doesn't win it, there should be an investigation," Jarvis said.

    Owl Links
    Your daily guide to what is being written about FAU told Owl fans about the differences in the weight room since Rod Payne took over as strength and conditioning coach.

    Owl Cal
    A daily calendar of FAU events

    9:00 a.m. Football Pro Day
    FAU FIU Shula Bowl in October?
    FAU has dominated FIU in December. Can the Owls do it in October?

    Most Sun Belt teams announced their 2010 football schedules on Monday and according to FIU's web site the annual Shula Bowl will be played on Oct. 30. Will the change of month make a difference?

    If you believe North Texas' web site, FAU's first home game of the season will be Sept. 25 vs. the Mean Green. FAU will also host Louisiana-Lafayette (Nov. 13) and Troy (Dec. 4), according to their sites.

    Every Sun Belt school other than FAU released their schedule on Monday. The Sun Belt Conference office didn't release the composite schedule either, which means there still may be some beyond-the-last-minute jockeying going on.

    Just for the moment, let's assume other school's web sites are correct in their schedule postings. This is what FAU's schedule for 2010 should look like:

    4 at UAB
    11 vs. Michigan St. at Detroit
    18 Bye
    25 vs. North Texas

    2 at South Florida
    9 at Louisiana-Monroe
    16 bye
    23 at Arkansas St.
    30 vs. FIU

    6 at WKU
    13 vs. Louisiana-Lafayette
    20 at Texas
    27 at MTSU

    4 vs. Troy

    FAU's big 3 sports converge
    Take a breather. Rest up. Do whatever it is you have to do now to prepare for the latter half of the week. It's going to be a big one for FAU fans.

    The craziness begins Thursday when NFL scouts migrate to Boca Raton for Florida Atlantic's Pro Day. Rusty Smith, Jason Harmon, Willie Rose, Carl Spitale and other senior Owls will also try to impress the more than 20 NFL scouts, along with representatives from the CFL and UFL.

    Former Owls Frantz Joseph, Corey Small, Greg Joseph and Winfred Rivera will also take another crack at impressing some scouts.

    Moving to Friday, FAU baseball begins a three-game weekend series against Boston College at FAU Stadium. The Owls will be glad to see the Eagles come to town. They are the only team FAU beat in the three-game weekend tournament at Auburn, and did so quite handily.

    On Saturday the fun starts in Hot Springs, Ark. Both the men's and women's basketball teams should be able to win their opening round games in the Sun Belt Tournament against South Alabama and New Orleans, respectively. The photo shows Brett Royster throwing down a two-handed jam in FAU's 96-93 overtime loss to South Alabama at The Burrow earlier this year - a game that Jarvis to this day counts as a win.

    Owls' fans - you have our permission to take a day or two off from work. You'll need to be fresh for the weekend.

    Owl Links
    Your daily guide to what is being written about FAU brought you the official bracket for the upcoming Sun Belt Tournament and offered a game story from FAU baseball's disappointing outing at Auburn.

    Here is the Mobile Press-Register's look at South Alabama's first-round tournament match-up against FAU.

    Owl Cal
    A daily calendar of FAU events

    6 p.m. - ESPN 760's FAU Sportspage featuring Mike Jarvis - live from Boston's in Delray

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