Hoops talk in August? You bet. SI.com lists CCSU’s Ken Horton among the nation’s best & Overtime! breaks it all down.

It’s never too early to start talking hoops, especially when the NEC’s reigning Player of the Year is prominently featured in a SI.com story that spotlights the nation’s top returning offensive performers.

Based on the work of John Pudner, a political consultant who dabbles in advanced statistics as they relate to sports, Central Connecticut State’s Ken Horton stacks up with such luminaries as Wisconsin’s Jordan Taylor, Ohio State’s Jared Sullinger and Pitt’s Ashton Gibbs.  The metric that Pudner’s work is based on is called “Value Add,” which attempts to quantify the percentage drop-off if a star player’s possessions were all given to a replacement player, explained as a “generic, ninth of tenth man on a Division I bench.”

A total of 2,540 players were studied, and the top-10 in the country were cited in the article.

Rank Team Player ORtg Value Add over replacement
1 Wisconsin Jordan Taylor 126.9 9.46%
2. Ohio St. Jared Sullinger 120.4 6.44%
3. Vanderbilt John Jenkins 123.5 6.18%
4. Pittsburgh Ashton Gibbs 127.9 5.99%
5. Xavier Tu Holloway 114.1 5.83%
6. Missouri Marcus Denmon 127.1 5.55%
7. UNC Tyler Zeller 120.1 5.08%
8. Cent. Conn. Ken Horton 123.2 5.06%
9. Notre Dame Tim Abromaitis 117.0 4.88%
10. S. Dakota St. Nate Wolters 118.7 4.81%

Horton, who led the NEC with 19.5 ppg and ranked in the top-15 in eight statistical categories, ranks eighth in Value Add among returning Division I players.  Luke Winn, the author of the article, suggests “the 5.06 percent next to Horton’s name means is that he’d theoretically be able to enhance a major-conference team‘s offense by 5.06 percent.”

Horton enters his senior season as the NEC’s active leader with 1,435 points and 592 rebounds.  The ultra-versatile 6’6″ forward has the chance to become just the fifth player in NEC history to reach 2,000 career points and will make a push to finish in the top-10 in career rebounding.

To see what the hype is all about, catch highlights from one of Horton’s best career performances, a game in which he racked up 23 points, 11 rebounds, six steals and six blocks in a 71-55 win over Bryant in an NEC-televised affair on February 9, 2011.

(Posted August 30, 2011)

NEC Campus Tour (August 26, 2011) – A quick trip across the campuses of the NEC’s 12 member institutions

Bryant – The Bulldogs’ women’s soccer fans will get a chance to see the team play its first home game of the 2011 campaign on Friday, August 26 at 3:30 pm. Coming off last weekend’s season-opening tie at intrastate rival Providence, Bryant will host MAAC member Rider at Bulldog Stadium.  Read more. The Bulldogs were originally scheduled to host another MAAC member – Manhattan – on Sunday, but the school’s administration postponed the game until Friday, September 2 at 1:00 pm due to the impending problem of Hurricane Irene, which is scheduled to hit the mid-Atlantic region at some point this weekend before moving up to New England. Read more.

Central Connecticut – The Blue Devils are taking aim at the Northeast Conference title , more specifically, a third consecutive title on the gridiron.  Central Connecticut, which won the 2009 NEC crown outright before earning a share of the 2010 title, completed its final scrimmage of summer on Thursday afternoon, August 26.  Head coach Jeff McInerney said he was “pleased with the effort” as he sat down with Tom Pincince to talk about Thursday’s transpirings during the latest edition of Open Mac.  Central will open the season on September 3 by hosting Southern Connecticut. Read more.

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Fairleigh Dickinson – The Knights lift the lid off their 2011 volleyball season at this weekend’s Beanpot Classic in Boston.  FDU won seven matches away from home and 2010 and hopes ti pick up the first of the new season against Holy Cross.  The Knights will also face Northeastern and NEC foe Central Connecticut this weekend. Read more.

Long Island – Kyle Robinson’s Blackbirds are out west set to contest the season-opening Fresno State Classic.  LIU volleyball finally saw its unprecedented run of six consecutive NEC titles end last year, but is out to prove 2010 was just an aberration.  Read more.

Monmouth – It’s a soccer doubleheader at Monmouth!  The women’s team, led by head coach Krissy Turner, will open its season against Seton Hall at 3:30 pm on August 26 on the Great Lawn, and the men’s team will follow.  Rob McCourt and the men will face Saint Peter’s in a 7:00 pm kickoff.  Both matches will be available free of charge on HawkVision.  Read more.

Mount St. Mary’s – The men’s soccer squad will kick off its 59th season of intercollegiate competition at cross-state rival, and former NEC member, UMBC on Saturday, August 26.  The game’s start time has been moved up to 1:00 pm. Read more.

Quinnipiac – It’s only August, but the Bobcats are already thinking about basketball.  Quinnipiac has finalized plans for its annual Midnight Madness event, which tips off the official start of the season when teams can begin full practices.  Read more.

Robert Morris – It’s beginning to become an annual occurence for RMU Volleyball. For the second consecutive season, a Colonials is a semifinalist for the Lowe’s Senior Class Award.  Senior MB Hannah Veith joins Amanda Graham in giving the program back-to-back semifinal showings.  Read more.

Sacred Heart – The SHU Sports Information department continues to expand its work in the new media sector.  The latest production is “Big Red Report” – a sportsdesk-type program produced for the web.  Watch it here…

St. Francis (NY) – The date for the department’s annual Hall of Fame ceremony is set for January 21, 2012 and the nomination process is underway.  Read more.

 

Saint Francis (PA) – Red Flash volleyball opens the 2011 campaign in tournament play at Pittsburgh-based Duquesne.  The Flash will face Rhode Island and Duquesne on Friday before playing matches against Howard and Marist on Saturday.  SFUathletics.com will be blogging live from the event and you can follow it here

Wagner – The Green-White Scrimmage, an annual ritual that concludes football training camp, was held on Thursday afternoon, August 25 at Wagner College Stadium.  Head coach Walt Hameline, a 200-game winner, shared his thoughts…

 

Visit NortheastConference.org for all game results.

Hurricane Irene Hits NEC’s Weekend Schedule Hard! Stay up-to-date with latest changes…

Hurricane Irene is on its way and athletic administrators all around the Northeast Conference are taking action.  A number of schedule changes have already been put  into place and there may be more to come.

Stay tuned to your favorite NEC team’s athletic website for the latest on postponements, cancellations, and date/time changes.

What’s Happened So Far…

Bryant’s field hockey game at Villanova, set for Saturday, August 27, has been postponed.  The Bulldogs’ season opener against Delaware is expected to go on as scheduled with the Bulldogs returning to Smithfield from Newark, DE after the game rather than heading out to Philadelphia.

Central Connecticut’s women’s soccer game scheduled for Sunday at UConn has been canceled.  Meanwhile, the volleyball team has seen its Saturday night contests at the Beanpot Classic moved up to earlier in the day.

Fairleigh Dickinson saw its women’s soccer date with Maine canceled. The match was scheduled for Saturday, August 27 at 7:00 pm. 

Long Island women’s soccer and volleyball are both competing on the west coast this weekend and men’s soccer is idle.

Monmouth altered the start of its men’s and women’s soccer home openers.  The women’s home opener with Seton Hall will now be played at 3:30 pm on Friday, August 26, and will be followed by the men’s season opener against Saint Peter’s at 7:00 pm. 

Mount St. Mary’s men’s soccer saw its season opener at UMBC moved from a 7:00 pm start to a 1:00 pm kickoff on Saturday, August 27. 

Quinnipiac will no longer be visiting Army in women’s soccer on Sunday, August 28 as the game was cancelled due to the anticipated storm. 

Robert Morris will no longer play field hoc key at Villanova on Sunday August 28, but Olivia Netzler’s Colonials will open the season against Albany as scheduled on Saturday, August 27 in Spring City, PA. 

Sacred Heart women’s soccer will open its season at Albany on Friday, August 26 at 3:00 pm, but the Pioneers’ home opener against Illinois State, which was originally set for Sunday, has been postponed. 

St. Francis (NY) and UConn moved up the scheduled start time of Saturday’s men’s soccer contest.  Kickoff, which was slated for 7:00 pm, will take place at 1:00 pm. 

No Saint Francis (PA) contests are expected to be affected by Hurricane Irene. 

Wagner pushed its home women’s soccer contest, originally scheduled for Sunday August 28, back until Tuesday, August 30 at 4:00 pm.

Northeast Conference Campus Tour (August 19, 2011) – A quick trip across the campuses of the NEC’s 12 member institutions

Bryant – Your chance to meet and greet Bryant athletic administrators and coaches is here. Bryant will host a “Black & Gold Kickoff Party” for the 2011-12 academic year on the evening of August 29 at Uno Chicago Grill (Smithfield Crossing location).  Those interested in attending should contact Jason Sullivan (jsulliva@bryant.edu) for information.  Read more.

Central Connecticut – The Blue Devils are going full blast on the gridiron and head coach Jeff McInerney has been discussing the latest training camp news in his “Open Mac” spot on ccsubluedevils.com.  He’s scheduled to host six more sessions of “Open Mac” before camp breaks, and here’s the latest from New Britain.  Read more.

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Fairleigh Dickinson – Fairleigh Dickinson soccer, both men’s and women’s, will kick off the 2011 season next week at home.  The women lead off the schedule by hosting MAAC member Rider on Tuesday, August 23 at 5:00 pm.  Three days later, the men’s team, fresh off being selected second in the NEC preseason coaches’ poll, kicks off the fall campaign against local rival New Jersey Tech on August 26 at 7:00 pm.  Read more.

Long Island – Long Island’s men’s and women’s soccer took some time away from preseason training and teamed up in a community service endeavor.  The Blackbirds hosted a clinic for Special Olympics at LIU Field on August 13.  Read more.

Monmouth – Three Monmouth men’s soccer players are amongst the best in America.  RJ Allen (D), Anthony Vazquez (D), and Max Hamilton (MF) all appear on the Hermann Trophy Watch List for the 2011 season.  In all, 42 players are in the running for the Missouri Athletic Club’s Hermann Trophy, which is the highest individual award in intercollegiate soccer. The recipients are selected by head coaches of NCAA Division I programs who are members of the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA).  Read more.

Mount St. Mary’s – Women’s soccer head coach Tom Gosselin looks to continue the progression in his fifth season at the helm.  Coming off the winningest season of his tenure thus far, Gosselin will lead the Mount into the 2011 opener at Rider on August 20 at 4:00 pm in Lawrenceville, NJ.  Read more.

Quinnipiac – Quinnipiac field hockey picked up three wins and a draw during its four-game European Tour in June, but come Friday, August 26, the Bobcats’ record will be 0-0.  Veteran head coach Becca Main will host Holy Cross to open the 2011 season at 12:00 pm.  The Bobcats will have a pair of tune-ups prior to the opener against the Crusaders.  Quinnipiac hosts its annual Alumni Game on August 20 before an exhibition against Fairfield on August 23. Read more.

Robert Morris – The Colonials’ women’s soccer team is the first of the fall.  With hundreds of regular season contests, ranging from field hockey to soccer, on the NEC’s fall slate, Robert Morris kicks it all off with Game No. 1.  RMU is the first team to open competition for the 2011-12 academic year as the Colonials take on Syracuse in the opening round of the Embassy Suites Kick-off Classic hosted by Florida Gulf Coast on Friday, August 19 at 5:00 pm.  Read more.

Sacred Heart – With football training camp in full swing up in Fairfield, SacredHeartPioneers.com is busy previewing the season ahead on the gridiron.  The Official Website of Sacred Heart Athletics is producing a four-part internet series entitled Sacred Heart Football Preseason Pass. The latest edition (Part II) focuses on the wide receivers and defensive line.  Read more.

St. Francis (NY) – Head coach Brenda Milano has finalized the Terriers’ non-conference women’s basketball schedule for 2011-12.  St. Francis (NY) will open the season on November 13 in the City of Brotherly Love where it will take on Ivy League member Penn.  The 11-game slate includes five home dates on Remsen Street.  Read more.

Saint Francis (PA) – So far, so good for Red Flash men’s soccer.  Saint Francis (PA) took on Cleveland State in an exhibition match on August 17 and blanked the Horizon League member, 2-nil.  Tobi Iguade and David Butler notched the markers for the Flash.  Read more.

Wagner – Freshman football player Josh Talbott has an amazing story to tell. The fact that he is now a collegiate student-athlete is quite remarkable considering the odds he overcame to reach this point.  A number of news outlets have helped tell Talbott’s story, including renowned Staten Island Advance columnist Cormac Gordon. Read more.

Wagner College freshman receiver Josh Talbott has two new teams by Corman Gordon (Aug. 18, 2011)

Northeast Conference – The NEC staff has spent the last week hard at work preparing gift bags for incoming freshmen students around the conference.  All freshmen on each of the NEC’s 12 campuses will receive a drawstring sack loaded with welcome gifts from Bed Bath and Beyond, Sharpie, Choice Hotels, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Snyder’s, and 3M.  The effort, which is spearheaded by the NEC’s assistant director of events/operations Kevin Sanchez, will wrap up early next week as the gift bags are shipped out to the league’s 12 member institutions.

 

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Four NEC Football Teams Receive Votes in TSN Top 25 plus Overtime! Takes a Quick Trip Through Each Team’s Training Camp

The Northeast Conference doesn’t have a representative at the party yet, but four of its teams are knocking on the door. 

The Sports Network released its Preseason Top 25 Poll on Monday, August 15, and Central Connecticut, Albany, Robert Morris, and Duquesne were all listed in the “receiving votes” category.

Fresh off being named the NEC preseason favorite by the league’s head coaches, Central Connecticut totaled 26 points in the Top 25 voting.  Albany received the second-most votes of any NEC team, garnering 10 points.  Steel City rivals Robert Morris and Duquesne also had a small presence.  The Colonials, who represented the NEC in the NCAA FCS playoffs last year, picked up two points while the Dukes earned one.

Robert Morris cracked the Top 25 during the 2010 regular season before a league loss to Bryant knocked the Colonials out of the national rankings.

Defending NCAA champion Eastern Washington garnered 90 first-place votes and topped the voting as the National Preseason No. 1.

NEC member Monmouth’s Week 1 opponent was present in the rankings. D efending Patriot League champion Lehigh, which will visit the Jersey Shore on September 3, is ranked No. 13 heading into the 2011 campaign. 

Two other Opening Day opponents on NEC teams received votes in the Top 25 Poll.  Patriot League member Colgate, which will visit Monmouth on October 8, totaled 75 points in the voting and will open the season against Albany.  Robert Morris will host Pioneer League member Dayton, which garnered 21 points, in its season opener.

Once the regular season begins, the Sports Network will release the Top 25 Poll on a weekly basis every Monday afternoon.

A national panel of sports information and media relations directors, broadcasters, writers and other dignitaries select the Top 25. 

 View The Sports Network Preseason FCS Top 25

 

 Training Camp Updates (August 15)

Albany conducted an intra-squad scrimmage on August 13, five days after the opening of camp.  With nearly 85 players taking the field at some point during the day, including five different quarterbacks, sophomore signal caller Buddy Leathley was present after missing the entire spring recovering from injury.  Leathley, who started the final five games of the 2010 season, took numerous snaps in what was a defense-dominated scrimmage.

From UAlbanysports.com: “We were inconsistent and the offensive line had too many pass protection breakdowns,” said UAlbany coach Bob Ford, whose team went against each other for 81 plays to conclude the first full week of practice. “The defense is always ahead because the offense takes longer to time up the plays. We have some good players on the defensive line and we came out of it pretty healthy.”

 

Bryant opened preseason training camp on Thursday, August 11.  The Bulldogs welcomed more than 100 players, including four preseason all-NEC selections, onto campus to prepare for the Bulldogs’ third season as a NEC member.  Bryant will have 23 days from the start of camp until the 2011 season opener at Maine on September 3.

From Bryantbulldogs.com:  “We had a very strong spring, but know that we have a lot of work these next couple weeks of camp before heading to Orono, Maine, ” said Fine. “With a handful of injuries in key spots, we hope that the competition of camp will reveal some underclassmen and newcomers who can make an immediate impact.”

One of those injuries is to senior starting quarterback Michael Croce.  The two-year starter won’t be available for the season opener, but his head coach hopes he will eventually be on the field this season.  In the meantime, Marty Fine and his coaching staff will have to look at other options under center.

 

Central Connecticut kicked off its preseason regimen on Monday, August 8.  Two days later, a good portion of the roster took some time away from the gridiron to attend the athletic department’s press conference/reception during which a new Blue Devil logo was unveiled.  Much of Week 1 had to do with paperwork and physical performance testing complete.

“The first five days of camp, in the position that I have, I do a lot of administrative work,” said head coach Jeff McInerney entering his sixth season at the helm. 

Acclimation is also a key piece to the opening week of camp with 29 newcomers spending this time by, in the words of McInerney, “learning what it takes to be a Blue Devil.”

On Thursday, August 11, McInerney sat down with CCSUbluedevils.com and reported on the first few days of camp.  Listen Here.

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Duquesne has been at it for more than a week now.  Head coach Jerry Schmitt welcomed the Dukes back to campus on Sunday, August 7, and they’ve been working ever since.  Heading into its fourth season as a NEC member, Duquesne has a new offensive coordinator.  Pittsburgh native Gary Dunn will likely use the rest of summer to learn more about his personnel, but he won’t be overhauling the Dukes’ offense. 

From GoDuquesne.com: In addition, DU will be in its first season under offensive coordinator Gary Dunn, who comes to the Bluff after 14 seasons at Morehead State.  Dunn coached three All-Americans and 21 first team All-Pioneer Football League players, in guiding an MSU offense that regularly ranked among the nation’s FCS leaders in numerous NCAA statistical categories. “Gary has a proven record of success at the FCS level,” said Schmitt. “He’s is great fit for our style of play.”

 

Monmouth is eight days into preseason training camp having hosted its first practice back on Sunday, August 7.  The Hawks’ first practice in full pads came on Thursday, August 11, and players had their first look at the newly-renovated weight room later that evening. 

Head coach Kevin Callahan summed up the important day using his Twitter account.

From @MUHawksFB twitter feed (Aug. 11): “First practice in pads went well. Great intensity and enthusiasm, need to eliminate some of the mistakes.” … “Weight room renovations completed. Awesome facility! Had our first team workout this pm.”

 

Robert Morris kicked off its 18th summer of training camp on Tuesday, August 9 at Joe Walton Stadium.  The man for whom the Colonials’ home facility is named was also on hand, and the only head coach Robert Morris has ever known was talking about team chemistry.

From RMUcolonials.com: “Every year is a challenge, especially in the Northeast Conference,” head coach Joe Walton said. “We had a group of players that came together last season to do something special, but this group has to form its own identity, and that starts in the locker room. The great thing is we have a group of returning players that have gone through the experience of what it takes to be a championship team, and how we come together and who steps up as leaders will ultimately determine how successful we’ll be.”

The Colonials will have a total of 26 days from the start of camp until Kickoff 2011.  Robert Morris welcomes Dayton to “The Joe” on September 3.

 

Sacred Heart enters its second week of preseason training camp.  In the days ahead, head coach Paul Gorham will attempt to answer the big question of who will replace Dale Fink as the starter under center.  The Pioneers will have a summertime quarterback competition for the first time in four years now that the NEC’s all-time leading passer had graduated.  So far, the status of the situation remains the same as it did when camp opened on Sunday, August 7.  Luke Wischnowski sits atop the depth chart, but Tim Little is just as likely to be the Opening Day starter.

Sacred Heart looks to have an effective running game this fall, something that can only help whomever is taking the snaps.

From SacredHeartPioneers.com:  SHU should be very solid up front on the offensive side of the ball as the squad brings back seven of eight offensive linemen and their starting tight end from 2011.  This sets the stage for increased production from redshirt sophomore Gregory Ibe, (Queens, NY) who rushed for 460 yards and two touchdowns last season while averaging a team high 5.7 yards per carry.  “We have the ability to run the ball,” said Gorham.  “That should help us ease the pressure on our quarterback as we develop our identity as a team.”

 

Saint Francis (PA) practiced in full pads for the first time on Friday, August 12.  A total of 136 student-athletes, including over 60 freshmen, are in camp with the Red Flash, looking to solidify their spot on the varsity unit.  As the Flash head into Week No. 2, offensive coordinator Ralph DelSardo gives his thoughts on what’s transpired thus far…

 

Wagner has eight practices in the books and will open up the second week of training camp with a pair of practice sessions on Monday, August 15.  The Seahawks arrived on Grymes Hill on Sunday, August 7 and had their first scrimmage on Saturday, August 13.  Wagner will host a second scrimmage on Friday, August 19, six days before the team breaks camp.

WagnerAtheltics.com provided an up-front look at practiceView Photo Gallery

Northeast Conference Campus Tour (August 12, 2011) – A quick trip across the campuses of the NEC’s 12 member institutions

Bryant – Set for its third NEC season on the gridiron, Bryant football opened its training camp on August 11. The Bulldogs are coming off a 7-win season and were tabbed for a fifth-place finish in the annual NEC Coaches’ Poll. Read more. … Quick update on 2010 NEC Baseball Rookie of the Year, and 2011 NECBL Summer All-Star, Kevin Brown – The outfielder, who heads into his junior year at Bryant has helped his summer league team, the Keene Swamp Bats, capture the NECBL title.  Read more.

Central Connecticut – Central Connecticut Athletics unveiled a sleek, new look this week.  The Blue Devils officially released the department’s new athletic logo in the front lobby of Detrick Gymnasium.  AD Paul Schlickmann did the honors with a slew of media, fans, and alumni in attendance.  Also feel free to visit ccsubluedevils.com and suggest a name for the new Blue Devil.  Read more.

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Fairleigh Dickinson – Fairleigh Dickinson men’s soccer has unveiled an official list of 13 newcomers who will join the program for the 2011 season.  The Knights, led by longtime head coach Seth Roland, have been one of the conference’s most-decorated programs throughout the years and are coming off a semifinal round loss to Garden State rival Monmouth in the 2010 NEC Tournament.  Read more.

Long Island – The man who holds Long Island’s men’s basketball single-game scoring record passed away earlier this month in his New Jersey home.  LIU legend Sherman White, an All-American forward who scored 63 points on Feb. 28, 1950, is survived by his wife Ellen, his daughter and three stepchildren.  Read more.

Monmouth – Monmouth is home to the 2010-11 Northeast Conference Women’s Scholar Athlete of the Year.  Ali Kliment, a recent graduate of the Hawks’ women’s soccer program, received the honor by virtue of her conference-high grade-point average.  Read more.

Mount St. Mary’s – Head women’s basketball coach Bryan Whitten has inked five recruits who will enroll at the Mount for the 2011-12 academic year.  The fifth-year coach welcomes four freshmen and a transfer from Division I CAA member Virginia Commonwealth.  Read more.

Quinnipiac – Two members of the Bobcats’ women’s volleyball team spent some of their summer at the Olympic Training Facility.  Junior Taylor Pane and alumnae Amanda Armstrong coached for the Iroquois Empire High Performance program, a part of the USA Volleyball Olympic Pipeline for athlete development.  Read more.

Robert Morris – The Colonials women’s soccer team opened camp last week in preparation for the upcoming 2011 season, which features non-conference dates against Big East member Syracuse (Aug. 19) and cross-town rival Duquesne (Sept. 16).  RMU looks to improve on its 6-win season from a year ago.  Read more.

Sacred Heart – The Pioneers will kick off the 2011 Northeast Conference Television schedule when they host Bryant in a gridiron contest slated for September 16.  Sacred Heart and Bryant will play under the lights at Campus Field before a Friday night TV audience on MSG+ and Cox.  Read More.

St. Francis (NY) – The Terriers’ men’s soccer team has three captains heading into the 2011 campaign.  Head coach Tom Giovatto has announced that seniors Aldo Toma and Robbie Weir along with junior Farzan Bigdeli will serve in the leadership roles.  Read more.

Saint Francis (PA) – The Red Flash advanced to the NEC Men’s Soccer Championship Game thanks to a pair of tallies by Sean O’Reilly in a semifinal round win over Sacred Heart.  O’Reilly, who graduated in May, recently put an exclamation point on his collegiate career when he was named the NEC Men’s Scholar Athlete of the Year.  Read more.

Wagner – Five Wagner greats will be enshrined into the Seahawk Hall of Fame later of this calendar year.  AD Walt Hameline announced that Jennifer Abrizio (Class of 1985, Softball), John Chaney (Class of 1988, Football), Andy Fellouris (Class of 1986, Football), Frank Gunther, (Class of 1964, Golf), and Milan Rikic (Class of 1995, Basketball) were selected on the merit of their athletic prowess.  Read more.