Five newsworthy tweets (from the past week) that Northeast Conference fans should see…
Five newsworthy tweets (from the past week) that Northeast Conference fans should see…
Two Northeast Conference offensive linemen have a prime opportunity to display their abilities in front of NFL scouts.
Duquesne OG Ben Huss and Wagner OT Greg Senat have received invitations to major all-star games and have subsequently accepted.
Huss is headed to Southern California to participate in the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl and the important week of practices leading up to the game.
Huss’ selection means the NEC will have representation in this particular game for the second year in a row. Former Saint Francis U safety Lorenzo Jerome made two interceptions en-route to securing the MVP award at the 2017 NFLPA Collegiate Bowl, which was played at the StubHub Center.
This year’s game will be played on January 20 at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, giving Huss the chance to compete at one of the most-storied venues in the history of football. The Keystone State product will wear No. 66 while competing for the National Team. The game kicks off at 4:00 pm ET on FS1.
Huss, a two-time All-American, made 44 starts on the Dukes’ line with most of his work coming at right guard. The team captain anchored a unit that paved way for league-leading 32.2 points per game and NEC-best 6.1 yards per play while helping RB AJ Hines to his second straight 1,000-yard rushing campaign.
Meanwhile, Senat received invitations to the NFLPA Bowl and the East West Shrine Game and has elected to participate in the latter. He will compete for the West and wear jersey No. 72.
Senat, a 6-foot-7 tackle, has taken an unconventional path to becoming the NEC’s first-ever Shrine Game participant. He came to Wagner as a men’s basketball recruit and proceeded to make 104 appearances on the hardwood for the Green & White. During the late winter months of 2016, the former high school tight end approached the football coaching staff and worked his way into the starting right tackle position by summertime.
Twenty-two starts later, Senat has pro scouts salivating over his size and athleticism.
As his meteoric rise continues, numerous reports have indicated that Senat has had a good week of practice heading into Saturday’s Shrine Game at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, FL.
— Shrine Game (@Shrine_Game) December 16, 2017
Wagner OT Greg Senat just flipped from NFLPA to Shrine Game. Big get for Shrine. If he does well he could end up in 5-6 range. He should be a late round pick just off his upside alone. Shrine needs to jump on the rest I mentioned.
— Josh (@Joshnfldraft) December 10, 2017
Joe Ostman vs. Greg Senat pic.twitter.com/LzGYypOVNd
— Jeff Risdon (@JeffRisdon) January 16, 2018
I’m starting to look over the Shrine Game rosters. This one sticks out: Greg Senat, OT, Wagner – 6’8, 290-pound two-year starter at OT and former basketball player.
— Dan Kadar (@MockingTheDraft) January 9, 2018
Official weigh-in results from the 2018 East / West Shrine Game https://t.co/Co7phRfQ8b
— Scott Wright (@DraftCountdown) January 17, 2018
— The Collegiate Bowl (@NFLPABowl) December 22, 2017
Small School 2018 G/C Rankings
1. Skyler Phillips Idaho St
2. Austin Kuhnert NDSU
3. Tyshon Mosley Portland St
4. Jacob Ohnesorge SoDak St
5. Justin Lea JSU
6. Ben Huss Duquesne
7. Jake Krause Bemidji St
8. Ian Park Slippery Rock
9. Justin Evans SCSU
10. Oscar Ghasab Shipp.
— Jason Engstrom (@Jason_Podyum) January 3, 2018
Jacksonville State OT Justin Lea came in undersized at 6030, 285 pounds. I was hoping he would weigh over 300. He would likely move to guard. Duquesne OG Ben Huss came in at 6006, 306 pounds.
— Josh (@Joshnfldraft) January 16, 2018
Good luck to #DuqFB OL Ben Huss in the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl on Saturday!
— Duquesne Football (@DuqFB) January 17, 2018
The highly-anticipated Keystone State Clash lived up to its billing.
It was looking as if the headlines would be about a Jess Kovatch-led road win over the defending champions, but there were still 3:12 remaining.
Becoming the first NEC athlete to eclipse the 40-point mark this season, Kovatch buried a triple to run her single-game total to 42 points while bumping the Saint Francis U’s lead to 60-54.
Then, the Robert Morris defense, which leads the league in two major categories, clamped down. The Colonials allowed only an Ace Harrison layup over the final 3:12 and found themselves facing a 62-60 deficit with time for one final possession.
As the seconds ticked away with RMU controlling the ball in the frontcourt, Nina Augustin found senior Megan Smith who buried a buzzer-beating three-pointer.
The dramatic 63-62 victory was the Colonials fifth win in a row and the team’s 10th in its last 11 outings.
The defending champions now stand alone atop the NEC standings at 5-0 with SFU (4-1) sitting 1.0 game back in second place.
These two rivals will meet again in Loretto on February 3 in what will be the featured #NECWBB Game of the Week on ESPN3. They have split the regular season series each of the past four years.
Watch the Game-winner…
— Northeast Conference (@NECsports) January 16, 2018
And this can be the difference in big games. 1 possession. 1 play. 1 shot. 1 FT. 1 false or delayed step or reaction….And 1 shot w 1.8 seconds on clock. tip your hat to #22 Smith. And come back next week and get 1 play better. pic.twitter.com/WlLp0lOo3d
— Joe Haigh (@CoachJoeHaigh) January 13, 2018
— RMU Basketball (@RMUWBasketball) January 13, 2018
The common denominator between the three head coaches in Robert Morris football history is NFL pedigree.
Introduced as the program’s third head coach on December 20, former UAlbany defensive coordinator Bernard Clark owns a resume that features three years of NFL playing experience and the 1987 Orange Bowl MVP award.
Clark, who competed collegiately as a linebacker with the Miami Hurricanes, began coaching at James Madison in 1998. He has since made stops at Liberty, FIU, South Florida, Hampton and Pitt.
— Josh Rowntree (@JRown32) December 20, 2017
— KDKA (@CBSPittsburgh) December 20, 2017
ICYMI: @RMUFootball introduces former @MiamiHurricanes star Bernard Clark as its new coach. (Spoiler: Find out about Clark’s brief encounter with #Steelers legend Joe Greene.) https://t.co/yIzF6mIdL1@NECsports@RMUAthletics
— Chuck Curti (@CCurti_Trib) December 21, 2017
Bernard Clark hates cell phones, the N-word, and was introduced to coaching through what he calls a “God situation.”
He aims to make Robert Morris’ football program a formidable one https://t.co/cNbyVZL3ZR
— Omari Sankofa II (@omarisankofa) December 20, 2017
— Justin Berl (@JustinBerlPhoto) December 20, 2017
New Robert Morris football coach Bernard Clark has three rules.
-Be on time.
-Don’t use cell phone in meetings.
-No “n-word” use.
Very interesting. Said the last one is about respect for all. Good for him.
— Colin Dunlap (@colin_dunlap) December 21, 2017
Some notable December headlines (as they appeared on Twitter) from around the Northeast Conference…
BRYANT LB SNAGS AP ALL-AMERICA HONOR
Bryant football linebacker Thomas Costigan selected AP All American…how cool is that! Congrats Tom & another year left for offense destruction.☺
— Ronald Machtley (@BryantUprez) December 13, 2017
He led the NEC in sacks and tackles for loss this season. Bryant’s Tom Costigan, the 2017 NEC Defensive Player of the Year, became the first Bulldog since 2014 to earn AP All-America status on the gridiron and Bryant President Ron Machtley is pumped to watch him work again next fall.
CCSU XC NEEDS ONE, TOO
New wall art in the coaches office. Sweet!! pic.twitter.com/0ts52IfvpX
— Peter Rossomando (@CoachRossomando) December 8, 2017
It was a fun fall to be a Blue Devil football fan as Pete Rossomando’s team went from 2-9 in 2016 to Northeast Conference Champions in one year’s time. In addition to the new addition to the CCSU football office space, the men’s cross country team created the need for more commemorative wall art as the Blue Devils won an unprecedented ninth consecutive conference crown.
FDU’S REMARKABLE REINHARDT
@UnitedCoaches All-Region Team ✅
All-Region Scholar ✅
Now Scholar All-American (3rd Team) ✅
— FDU Women’s Soccer (@fduws) December 14, 2017
The German-born midfielder earned a second consecutive All-NEC First Team selection for her prowess on the pitch while her work in the academic realm landed Jessi Reinhardt on the 2017 United Soccer Coaches NCAA Division I Women’s Scholar All-America Third Team.
LIU LEGEND MOVES UP TO MLS
Introducing our new head coach, Giovanni Savarese! We’re thrilled to have you join us in the Rose City.🌲🌹
— Portland Timbers (@TimbersFC) December 18, 2017
Giovanni Savarese, a NEC Hall of Famer, made a name for himself in the 1990s as one of the most-accomplished footballers in LIU Brooklyn history. A couple decades later, Savarese is a rising star on the professional soccer coaching scene. Following five seasons as head coach and sporting director of the New York Cosmos, Savarese was named the head coach of Major League Soccer’s Portland Timbers.
MULTI-TALENTED MOUNT SPRINTER
— Mount St Mary’s XCTF (@MountXCTF) December 11, 2017
The 2017-18 NCAA indoor track & field season has begun and Mount St. Mary’s sprinter Justin Kimble wasted no time in grabbing the top spot on the NEC 60m dash leader board. As it turns out, the veteran Mountie is more than just one of the fastest men in the NEC… he’s pretty good at graphic design, too.
RMU’S GROWING AAA LIST
— RMU Football (@RMUFootball) December 14, 2017
After leading the NEC in tackles and posting a 4.00 grade-point average, linebacker Adam Wollet is a CoSIDA Division I Football Academic All-American. Becoming the third RMU player to earn Academic All-America status since 2012, Wollet landed on the Second Team.
SHU SENIOR AMONGST FCS ELITE
Andrew O’Neill Named Finalist For STATS FCS Doris Robinson Scholar-Athlete Award https://t.co/Hn963JdiNZ
— SHU Pioneers (@SHUBigRed) December 6, 2017
Sacred Heart senior wide receiver Andrew O’Neill, who made 59 catches while maintaining a 3.86 GPA in 2017, was one of 13 national finalists for the STATS FCS Doris Robinson Scholar-Athlete Award.
SFU LINEMAN’S MEMORABLE MOMENT
“As soon as I caught it, I knew I was housing it. I felt like nobody could catch me.”
— SB Nation (@SBNation) December 8, 2017
Saint Francis U defensive lineman Louie Gartner found paydirt for the second time during the 2017 season when he snatched a pass at his own 7-yard line and took it the other way for the touchdown. The play created plenty of social media buzz and resulted in Gartner becoming a finalist for SB Nation’s Piesman Trophy.
SFBK SOPHOMORE TABBED DI ALL-AMERICAN
— St. Francis Brooklyn (@SFBKTerriers) December 14, 2017
He was the top defender for the NEC’s top defensive club, helping his team to a NCAA College Cup berth in 2017. Faouzi Taieb has added College Soccer News Third-Team All-America plaudits to his resume.
WAGNER SOPHOMORE EARNING ATTENTION
— Big Yo (@bigyo78) December 18, 2017
Wagner sophomore baller Blake Francis may not have been a blue chip prospect, but he’s averaging north of 20.0 points per game and the New York Post has taken notice.