2018 Southland Football Media Day Coach & Player Quotes

first_img2018 Southland Conference Football Media DayHilton Houston Post Oak by the Galleria, Houston, TexasThursday, July 19, 2018Archived Press Conference VideoHOUSTON – Head coach and player representatives from all 11 Southland Conference football teams previewed the upcoming season the Hilton Houston Post Oak Hotel on Thursday. Archived video of each team’s press conference is available for download here. “The opportunity to come back to Northwestern State was tremendous after being there at different times throughout my career. But it really started when I was eight, nine and 10 years old when my dad (Billy Laird) was the offensive coordinator (at NSU). You reflect on guys that were around the program like (quarterback) Bobby Hebert, (running back) Joe Delaney and (receiver) Mark Duper – all had great NFL careers. You don’t realize it at the time, but you’re surrounded by guys like that. Being there as a player, a defensive coordinator and now a head coach, it’s important who is around you. “I started out at Blinn Junior College, and (former offensive coordinator Ben Norton) was actually recruiting me. We started talking about hunting, and he offered me. It turned out pretty good.” TE Kalen Meggs:“E.A.T. – effort, attitude and tempo. You might not get the ball every play. But if a play is going to the left and you’re on the right side, you try to get to that left side to make a block to spring him. You have to have the same attitude off the field as you do on the field. Cheer on your teammates or cheer on the defense to get a stop.” QB Luke Anthony:“Our community has become much more supportive of our program over the last year. I believe they see what we’re doing on and off the field and they respect what we’re doing. Ultimately I think it’ll continue to get better in terms of student and community support.” DB Adrian Contreras:“We never want to be dependent on our offense. As a defense, we want to play and be successful on our one-third of the game. If the offense if having trouble on a drive, our defense should be able to go out onto the field and make a stand.” “When (Laird) first got hired, it was kind of shocking because I didn’t know he was up for the job. Laird and I joke a lot – he thinks he’s funny. But I was extremely excited. I know him well.” CENTRAL ARKANSASRB Carlos Blackman on offensive backfield depth:“(Our depth) is basically a secret weapon but not really a secret. Because we have so many options and people are always fresh and ready to go because there are so many of us. Everybody can do what they need to do to make us successful.” “I think we’ve made some changes in a positive way. It will be a little different, but I think you’ll notice that we will be more physical on both sides of the ball.” CB Raphael Lewis on the journey from Elk Grove, Calif. to HBU“Coming out of high school, I wasn’t offered any scholarship. I went to a junior college where they really helped define my skills. Coach helped my brother get to an NAIA school in Nebraska, but I was determined to go to a Division I. I got a couple of scholarship offers but HBU really showed me a lot of loyalty and I really respected that.” Head Coach Eric Morris on Unity: “So, I’ve always believed that football is the greatest team sport in America, and it’s an interesting dynamic for us as coaches to bring 105 players together. They’re all different, from different economic backgrounds … different races, and you put them all in a locker room together and we have to find a way to get these kids to love each other … and to understand what their purpose is in life and on this team.  If we can get them all moving in the same direction and fighting – that’s been a [dynamic] in some of the greatest teams I’ve ever been a part of. Some of the greatest teams I’ve ever been a part of weren’t always the most talented. The goal now is to build that chemistry in the locker room and have these guys focus on the little things each and every day. And when you get doing all of these well, that’s when you develop into a great team.” “We’re excited Coach (Jeff) Mills is on board. He has worked with the best and he can teach us something new. We get to pick his brain and we appreciate having him to learn from.” – Raphael Lewis “This is the most excited I have been, far and away, of my time at HBU. I believe in this football team, the leadership of this football team and I believe in our staff. We’ll have adversity, but we’re not far away from something really special happening. If we do a good job as coaches and our kids get confidence early, we could be a really dangerous team in this league this year.” HOUSTON BAPTISTHead Coach Vic Shealy:“As a coach, I am humbled by how hard our staff and how hard our players work, particularly in those days when no one else sees them. Most people don’t understand the time that wives give to their husbands being away recruiting, the early mornings that we meet or staying late to get work done. Most people don’t see the suffering and the loss of a typical college student life and they do it, because they love their teammates, they love the game and that fuels their acceptance of living a different life. As a head coach, it’s really humbling to see a game that I love, and a program I love and a school that I love, to see people being willing to give of themselves. Every player comes in with a certain idea of what he wants to take away from that effort, some are going to come in with certain goals of being all-conference and All-American, and certainly we’ve had those in our program, for some it’s to be a record holder or a starter, but for others, they’ll never reach that level, but they’ll become great teammates and be part of a legacy that one people will look back on this program when it was first founded and look at what became expected of how a player walks around campus, how he respectfully walks in that classroom and wants to learn. My hope is that we get to a point on game days that we get to a point where more people will come support us. This time of year, you do look back with a measure of appreciation for all that goes into it.” Head Coach on Early Assessments of the Team:“I think our mental toughness has increased dramatically since the day we set foot on campus. I don’t think some kids knew how much they could push their limits on the field. Our strength coach (Bret Huth) has done a phenomenal job of taking them to their breaking point.” UIWHead Coach Eric Morris on his staff:“In my early adult life, you know I’m not a baseball guy, but I’ve hit three home runs:  My first home run was marrying my wife, Maggie; she’s way out of my league. My second home run was having my child, Jack, who is two and a half years old. And my third home run would be hiring the staff that I hired at UIW this year.  I couldn’t be more blessed than to be around a great group of guys.” Head Coach Jeff Byrd on the season opener at Mississippi State:”Being a Mississippi guy, I’m excited about going to the state. We’ll have to listen to a lot of loud cowbells and they’re just telling us that this is the best team Mississippi State has ever had. I’ve had the opportunity to go there and coach a few times and we’ll see how the kids stand up in that atmosphere. We’re gonna go play. What we’re talking about is fighting through adversity and holding together. That’s a great test for us and I’m ready to hear those cowbells ring and see what the Lumberjacks can do.” Head Coach Jeff Byrd on Ryan Woods and Foster Sawyer:”Ryan’s the guy who helps carry us and push us together. It’s because of his leadership and his other qualities that hold us together. On the offensive end, that’s what you see Foster doing, too. That’s what you build family around and that’s what I hope these two young men can be for our football program.” “All of you coaches know it takes an army; it takes a great group of guys to set a culture in. To be able to put your thumb print on these student-athletes each and every day. And so, it takes a village. I was lucky enough to put together a group of 15 guys that are helping us each day to build a culture—and that’s not easy.” LB Ryan Woods on Biggest area of improvement in the offseason:”Conditioning and working on the little things. Getting in the film room and getting in better shape. I want to be one of the guys who doesn’t get tired. Sometimes I find myself false stepping and not doing things that can get me to the ball faster so I wanted to correct that as well.” OL Ryan Hanley on the Colonel running backs:“Our running backs are very close with the offensive line. That’s what I like. They come to all of our meetings. They’re trying to learn what we’re doing so they know what holes to hit. They take pride in knowing what we’re doing. Our running backs are a great group of people. I couldn’t’ ask for a better group.” OL Terence Hickman II on coach Bret Huth:“Since the coaching change, we’ve spent the most time with coach Huth out of any of the coaches. He’s been getting us right for conditioning and strength. We have a saying: ‘Body By Huth,’ because he’s getting us right every day we see him. It’s always a different task we have to accomplish that day, and it’s getting us better.” Head Coach Tim Rebowe on the new redshirt rule:“I think it’s going to help. It’s going to be interesting how different coaches and programs are going to approach it. Are you going to play guys early, save some for the middle or wait til the end of the year to play them all four games? Obviously, it’s going to help if you have a guy who’s doing some good things on a scout team, getting better week in and week out and all of a sudden you have an injury at that position. That guy can step up and play for you. Coaches are going to use it, but I think it will be good for the student-athlete.” OL Terence Hickman II on the progress of UIW he’s seen:“Before high school when I was getting recruited… I live in San Antonio and I had never heard of (UIW), to be honest with you, other than the academics of course. As I started getting closer to high school, I heard of UIW as a DI program on the rise, and I wanted to be part of it. With coach Morris coming in, we can really make that full circle and become a top-tier DI program.” OL Terence Hickman II on the strength and conditioning for the air raid offense:“Especially as an offensive lineman, you want to gain every advantage you can, so we are going fast and moving fast, which makes the defense get tired quicker. They aren’t substituting and that’s an offensive lineman’s dream. That’s the time to bury them, when they are tired.” “I expect us to have a really explosive offense — I expect us to fill up a lot of highlight reels. I think we will be fun to watch. When a lot of folks watch on TV, stream on the internet or watch us live in the stands, I think will people will come and cheer, because they care about HBU, but I think they’re going to come and say ‘Now, that was fun’ when watching us play offensively. A lot of that emotion has arrived, defensively, in our program. I’m very much of the belief that the direction we’re heading offensively is really going to make a difference and people are going to feel it early on.” LAMAROL Garrett Bowery on the 2018 Southland Preseason Poll:“There is no doubt it’s motivation. It will push us in the right direction. Like every other team in the league, we just want a championship and to be respected. The only way to earn respect is by winning a conference title and getting to the playoffs. If we get overlooked that’s fine because we know he have a lot of work to do.” DE Andre Walker & CB Raphael LewisOn playing for a new defensive coordinator in a new system:“We’re moving to a 3-4 system which will put our defensive ends in a tight formation closer to the nose guard and the biggest change is being more aggressive at the point of attack.” – Andre Walker OL Ryan Hanley on the offense improving from last year:“This whole offseason we’ve been working hard. We’ve been doing more than what we did last year because we know where we were last year. We’re looking forward to this season and will see what happens.” LB Chaston Brooks on the SLC preseason poll:“We’re going to use that as motivation for the upcoming season. Regardless of how the poll turned out, it wouldn’t have changed how we prepare for the season, or how we prepare for each individual week. As an athlete, it bothers you to not receive the respect on the field, but we know that respect is something we have to earn on the field and we didn’t do that last year. We will continue to go about our work outs in preparation for the season, but we will use that as motivation.” DE Zak Krolczyk KROLCZYK:“No (Brad Laird) hasn’t changed much (since becoming the head coach). But he has all the power now. He’s the same dude that does everything he can for his players. He wants to win, and that’s what we’ll do.” Head Coach Jeff Byrd on going back to Nacogdoches after media day:”Most of the guys back home are probably watching this thing to see what we’re talking about but they’re also focused on doing things right. We just talked about that earlier, what a blessing it is to have guys associated with your program that go where they’re supposed to go and do what they’re supposed to do. I’m very, very proud of these two young men on stage next to me and what their leadership does to bring our team together.” QB Foster Sawyer on what kind of weapons SFA has on offense:”There are a lot of guys. Obviously Tamrick Pace is a big part of our offense, but you look at our running backs, other receivers and everyone else and it’s just a great group that wants to prove themselves and help our team win. This conference is very tough, but for us it’s just thinking about one team – SFA- and thinking about what we can control.” SAM HOUSTON STATEHead Coach K.C. Keeler:“We’ve been the No. 3 team in the country the last four years in row. We’re trying to find a way to get over that hump. One of the ways to achieve that goal is to be more physical. The great thing about being here in the great state of Texas is that we’re going to get some great athletes. Along with that, we need to find a way to incorporate a more physical brand of football. That’s what our focus is and it’s what these new coaches are bringing to the table.” SOUTHEASTERN LOUISIANAHead Coach Frank Scelfo:“The mission of Southeastern Athletics is to have our student-athletes excel in competition, in the classroom and in the community and we’ve spent this first six months working toward those goals. We want to have all of our players to graduate and walk across that stage at commencement with a championship ring on their fingers. We want support from our community, so it’s important for our program in turn to support our community. We’re proud of our recently announced partnership with Child Advocacy Services CASA and we look forward to having the Lions be a huge part of the community in Hammond, America.” Head Coach Jeff Byrd on the recruiting class:”We have had them around for some of the summer and I feel like we did a good job recruiting out of east Texas. When you take 10 high school freshmen – and coaches will tell you we’re better off if we redshirt those guys – we’re real excited about the class and we talked about the transfers and you’re looking for a way to build your roster so you don’t ride the ups and downs. There were times last year where we had six true freshmen on the field. We hope to let those guys grow up, fill some of those gaps and really take that next step.” “My goal is to continue to influence the freshmen and the newcomers to the program. If everyone buys in, it elevates the team as a whole.” – Andre Walker DE Chris Terrell on UCA’s penchant for stopping the run:“The key is just putting in the work and having pride in stopping the run. We just push each other, and try to push everyone around us, to get better every day. That’s our job, that’s our role on this team.”center_img LB Ryan Woods on the number of close games lost last season:”Those losses stung really bad but every day we’re working hard to take steps to reach goals that we have set. We know we can play with anyone, but now we have to give more so we can walk away with wins.” NORTHWESTERN STATEHead Coach Brad Laird:“With me being a first-year head coach, the first thing I wanted to do was hire a diverse staff with experience and youth. Both of my coordinators have head coaching experience in Brad Smiley and Mike Lucas. They’ve both sat in the same seat I’m in, and I can lean on those guys.” DT Dante Hibbert:“Being part of the ‘212 Defense’ is special. Coach Jackson (defensive coordinator Tremaine Jackson) is phenomenal and he began instilling ins us from the first day he got here the mindset we have to have to play for the 212. But you have to want to play hard and you have to want to go out every day and be part of it. It’s not something that’s given to you; you have to earn your spot in the 212.” “Timing is everything, and the coaching profession takes you down a winding road, but it always takes us to the right spot, and this was the right spot at the right time for me.” DB Jamarkese Williams on being in one-on-one situations:“When you are playing corner, the biggest thing you can have is confidence. It’s not size or speed, the best thing you can have is confidence. Going out there and being on that island… I really love it and I embrace it, so I’m always looking forward to it.” Head Coach Jeff Byrd on bringing in transfers:”We needed to fill in guys to help us with the leadership roles.” “I think our kids understand that when you’re in our culture, it’s about certain expectations. There’s accountability and when things aren’t going our way we believe that we can turn the ship around. I think going deep in the playoffs the last four years, the team is hungry for the opportunity to win a national championship.” Head Coach Jeff Byrd on DB Alize Ward:“He’s a guy who can do anything. He has an opportunity to maybe be our best running back and you gotta say, “No, Alize, not today.” because he asked me about that. He plays safety for us, runs things in the back end, returns kicks, blocks punts, throw me a pass and the sad thing about it is he’d probably be pretty good at every one of them. He beings some leadership to us and he’s got some game-changing ability and we’re going to use his skills in some different places to give us a chance.” OL Alfred Beverly:“We’re ready for the 2018 season, but there’s not one game we’re looking forward more than any other. We have to stay together and take it one week at a time.” DB Dejion Lynch:“We were excited when it was announced that Coach Scelfo was our new coach. He is proven to be a great leader and we’re looking forward to playing for him.” LB Chaston Brooks on the preparing for his senior year: “Going into our senior year our main goal is to win conference and make the playoffs. Every week we go in looking at just the upcoming opponent and no further. You can’t get caught looking beyond your next opponent. Our senior class wants to be known for turning this program around.” MCNEESEHead Coach Lance Guidry“Good afternoon. Good to be back. We had a good year last year but it wasn’t quite good enough. Anytime you can win nine games is really impressive. Our goals are pretty high at McNeese. We have a great tradition and a great history. Our goal is always to get back to the national championship and win the conference championship. The only way to guarantee to go to the playoffs is to either win the conference or come out second.“This year is a different football team. Each year it is. Last year was a 9-win team and this year is brand new.“I’m excited and hopefully we’ll have a good season.”TE Lawayne Ross on transitioning from RB to TE“At first it was hard. I had been playing running back all my life. I didn’t really want to do it at first. But going through 7-on-7 and transitioning into spring ball, it was really more natural to me. After a while it got pretty easy for me.”Ross on playing with his brother Ryan Ross“It’s been a blessing. A lot of people can’t experience that. That first year he showed me the ropes and made things easier for me.”LB BJ Blunt on returning to McNeese after JUCO“Coming out of JUCO I was an All-American and had a lot of offers. I initially committed to Memphis then decommitted. Then committed to Texas Tech. But Coach Guidry came after me. I thought I was through and was going to try to go play pro but Coach Guidry came through for me and it’s been great.”Blunt on the DWA (Defense With Attitude)“I consider myself a very physical player. Coming to the team there were a lot of finesse guys like Dominique Hill who was just acclimated to the program. He could play with natural instincts. I love it.”NICHOLLSHead Coach Tim Rebowe on receiving No. 2 SLC preseason ranking and higher expectations for the program:“It’s quite an honor. It says a lot about our players and how hard they’ve worked and that your peers and the people you play against respect you. But at the end of the day you still have to play those games, and you have to be able to play them one game at a time. The message needs to be the same to our guys, and I think they understand that. We need to remember what got us here, and that was hard work, staying positive, strapping it up every day and doing all the simple, little things right that got us to this point.” Head Coach Jeff Byrd on support from the community of Nacogdoches:“It’s great to see all that purple and Purple Haze hanging over the wall. It’s our job to make sure we put a better product on the field because they do a great job to support us. That’s evident by our attendance numbers – we lead the league in attendance. That’s what we talk about to the guys – they deserve it, but they have to do it to deserve it. All the time, what are you going to bring? How are you going to shape what we’re doing now? LB Chaston Brooks on the nay-sayers: “The best part about the start of a new season is everyone is starting off 0-0. We all have the same goals and that is to win the Southland Conference. We won’t spend any time worrying about the opinions of others. We can only control what we do on the field, so we have to make sure we get better every day. What the voters in preseason polls do will not change how we go about doing our job.” STEPHEN F. AUSTINHead Coach Jeff Byrd:”We’re ready to get started. We have had a great summer going through our process those guys have been doing an outstanding job about doing their jobs and being accountable for themselves and their teammates. We have a great thing going here – the camaraderie with the players and coaches last night is a great deal and we appreciate you guys being here to ask us questions about our programs.” OL Terence Hickman II on promoting UIW:“Come out to some of the games, because I feel like we are going to surprise some of the people this year. We are going to make a lot of noise. We have a fast-paced offense and a lock-up, clamp-up defense. That’s all I can say. Just sit back and watch.” ABILENE CHRISTIANHead Coach Adam Dorrel:“The most exciting thing for me about our program right now is our culture; I believe we’ve turned the corner there. We haven’t had any issues on our team since January and that’s a testament to the leadership we have and the work they’re putting in on the field, in the classroom and in the locker room.” LB Hezekiah White on playing SEC teams close in each of the past two seasons:“I think it’s been great for us and our program. It’s putting Nicholls on the map. You go down to the wire with two elite SEC teams. It was great for us, but you have to give a lot of credit to our guys. They always came in ready to win. You also have to give credit to the coaching staff. They always came in with a great game plan to put us in a position to win. We just couldn’t pull them out, but it was a great opportunity for us.” Head Coach Jeff Byrd on what SFA returns:”You should talk about our returning starters – 11 on offense and as a coach as I turn those pages in our media guide I see guys that have played significant time. We lost one of our leaders last year in Trey Ramos in the first game and losing starters wound up happening at a lot of positions on our football team. When you look at the depth and the guys who have played meaningful time, that’s what excites me. Anytime you have competition – my job is to make you uncomfortable. The only way you’re going to improve is to be uncomfortable. That competition between positions is going to allow us to be competitive.” QB Foster Sawyer on QB competition:“Us quarterbacks, we all know that the best man will be on the field and that we all have a role. It’s a healthy competition and the more that we make it about our team and not each other the more successful we will be.” Head Coach Eric Morris on changing the culture:“Coaches talk all the time about changing the culture; people have a ton of ideas on how to get there. First and foremost, you’ve got to create relationships with these players. We had the challenge of coming in to about 70 student-athletes; we didn’t recruit these guys. Didn’t know them from Adam, but we did a good job of establishing relationships. That allowed us to trust them and them to trust us. That’s one thing our coaches have done fantastic job of so far.” Head Coach Jeff Byrd on overcoming adversity/handling coaching change:”To be a family, you’ve got to stick together. Everybody has pulled together during this situation and that has allowed us to be closer. It’s the player’s team – they’re the ones who lead us in the direction we want to go. I’m just the one holding the steering wheel and asking them where they want to go.” OL Garrett Bowery on the Cardinals’ offensive line:“We had a lot of young guys last season. We have all worked hard on the offense season and hit the weight room. The hard work that these guys have put in can’t be stressed enough. In addition to the young talent that was here last year, we added a lot of new players during signing period. I’m convinced we are heading in the right direction. Last year we averaged 287 pounds on the offensive line, and this year we average 304 pounds. We are bigger, stronger and we’ve quite a bit of depth. In addition to the added size, I think we are mentally tougher this year. We’re ready for the season to kick off.” LB Ryan Woods on being a preseason All-Southland pick after being a walk-on:”I started this journey as a walk on, so it’s a honor that coaches around the league see me as such. To get on the field & impress the coaches outside of SFA, that was a great honor and I appreciate that. That mentality as a walk on hasn’t changed. I have to be leader and being a vocal leader is big for me. I’m truly excited.” DB Jamarkese Williams on head coach Eric Morris:“He’s a great man. I love how he came in with an aggressiveness. He’s always talking about building us up as men. He’s always preaching about God. That’s a big deal to have in your life.” “You want to surround yourself with good people, and I was able to do that. They bring so much to the table day in and day out. We bounce ideas off each other all the time. There might be only person in the head coaching seat, but it’s going to take everybody to get us to where we want to go.” On what’s left to do before camp starts:“We have to make sure everyone knows the new playbook and is ready to go. We can’t have slip-ups. We have to have the mindset that we won’t let anyone score.” – Raphael Lewis LB Hezekiah White on experiencing the turnaround under Tim Rebowe:“It’s been wonderful. You have to give a lot of credit to Coach Rebowe. He came in and he wanted to change the culture around in Thibodaux. I think he’s done that. He and his coaching staff have done a wonderful job. They always preach winning. You talk about us losing every game our freshman year and last season we’re in the playoffs. It started out a little rough, but thanks to Coach Rebowe and staff, we’ve changed the culture around here. I love Thibodaux. The whole community has come out and supported us, and I appreciate them.” Head Coach Jeff Byrd on the perks of FCS football:”One of the best things about FCS football is that you get the opportunity to prepare every day to win a national championship. No disrespect to any other program at any other level, but there are some just because of their location that just really don’t get a chance to win a national championship. If you’re the best on the field each day, you’re going to have the opportunity to win a championship. That’s the best thing there is and that’s what I love this level of college football.” “If we want to do the things we want to do in 2018, our play on the offensive and defensive lines and the consistency and production in those two areas has to be better. We’ve got to be able to run the ball better in every area, and our run defense has to improve dramatically.” DB Jamarkese Williams on DC Justin Deason’s first message:“When he first got here, the first thing he was talking about was the Lord. Keeping God as part of your life and loving each other, trusting each other. Basically, having a brotherhood with each other. He’s always challenging us about loving and trusting each other, and that’s something we’ve been building on the defensive side.” QB Foster Sawyer on learning from assistant coach Jeremy Moses:”He always talks to us about how much time it really takes to accomplish your goals and the work that goes into it. He’s excited for camp this year just like the rest of us.” OL Mitchell Wantanabe:“The only thing missing on the legacy I want to leave is a national championship. That’s my goal and the team’s goal and that’s what we want to leave for future Bearkats.” Head Coach Jeff Byrd on the number of big games SFA plays:”You’ve got the Battle of the Piney Woods, then you have Chief Caddo at the end and then – by the way -McNeese, UCA and so many others on your radar, too. Because of that – the strength of our league – every game becomes your biggest game. The atmosphere at NRG Stadium is an incredible sight to see. A lot of times when you go into those larger stadiums, you don’t feel it. When you’re in NRG, you feel it and there’s excitement in the air and it has a bowl game feel to it.” Head Coach Jeff Byrd on the strength of the league:”You see great athletes on both sides of the ball. Coaches talk about the differences between this league and other FCS leagues – specifically for me coming from the OVC – and it’s the offensive and defensive lines. Skill guys are everywhere, but you start talking about the technique, the fundamentals and the physicality and we’re talking about every school that has those things. To sit here and say you’re in a league that put three teams in the playoffs – should have been four – so when you put those things together to have the schedule and the conference that there’s a chance for four playoff teams. You can be the fifth-place team in this conference, have a really good team and not be good enough. That’s what we talk about every day – what are you doing today to give us an opportunity to win a championship?” “We’ve spent every day since I started evaluating our student-athletes in every facet. We’re excited about what we have in place. We have a lot of talent, but maybe not as much in-game experience as some of the other teams in our league. Our guys want to win. We’ve been impressed with how they come to work every day and have embraced our culture – how we practice and what our expectations are.”last_img read more


first_imgIDAHO NATIVE SCOTT STEVENS WINS PRESTIGIOUS 2019 GEORGE WOOLF MEMORIAL JOCKEY AWARD; CONSISTENCY & WORK ETHIC HALLMARKS OF ICONIC 43-YEAR CAREER SCOTT & GARY STEVENS ARE FIRST BROTHER-WINNING COMBO SINCE AWARD’S INCEPTION IN 1950 ARCADIA, Calif. (Feb. 8, 2019)–In what is surely an indelible highlight to an incredible 43-year career in the saddle, jockey Scott Stevens has been selected by a nationwide vote of his peers as the winner of Santa Anita’s 2019 George Woolf Memorial Jockey Award.In winning this year’s Woolf Award, Stevens, 58, joins his Hall of Fame brother Gary, the 1996 Woolf winner, in becoming the only pair of brothers to win the Award since its inception in 1950.One of five Woolf Award finalists, Stevens outpolled fellow riders Joe Bravo, Kerwin Clark, John Davila, Jr. and Julien Leparoux.  In becoming the 70th Woolf Award winner, Scott Stevens follows in the footsteps of some of the greatest riders of the modern era.Born Oct. 6, 1960 in Caldwell, Idaho and the son of a trainer and former rodeo queen, Stevens was raised with horses and broke his maiden on May 30, 1976 at Les Bois Park in Boise, at the age of 15.Well respected and liked wherever he has ridden, Stevens, who is a member of both the Idaho and Canterbury Park (MN) Racing Halls of Fame, has amassed more than 4,800 wins from more than 32,400 career mounts.Despite sustaining numerous injuries over the years, several life threatening, Stevens, in an interview with Jay Privman of Daily Racing Form eight years ago, articulated what keeps him going.“…I want to make a good living,” he said.  “I still feel I’m as aggressive as I’ve ever been.  That’s the drive I have.  I love to win races.  I love being in the jocks’ room.  When Gary rode in the Legends race at Santa Anita a couple of years ago, I saw (1981 Woolf Award winner) Eddie Delahoussaye in the Grandstand.  He said he’d be out there in a heartbeat if he could.  We all feel that way…If the day comes when I don’t feel like doing it, when it feels like a job, I’ll go out gracefully and be proud of what I did.”A helpful source of information and guidance to younger riders, Stevens remains active this winter at Turf Paradise in Phoenix, AZ, where he’s a nine-time leading rider.Stevens, who resides in Phoenix with his longtime partner Pam Isles, has two grown children, a daughter, Jessica and a son, Jake, and he lists 1988 Breeders’ Cup Turf winner Great Communicator and 1998 Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes winner Real Quiet among the best horses he’s ridden.“Great Communicator I rode in the 1986-87 season at Santa Anita, a year and a half before he won the Breeders’ Cup with (2005 Woolf Award winner) Ray Sibille,” said Stevens in his 2011 interview with Jay Privman.  “He could run further at full speed than any horse I ever rode.  Real Quiet I rode three times as a 2-year-old, including the Indian Nations Futurity at Santa Fe, and a maiden race at Del Mar going a mile…At the time, he was just a big, skinny kid.  They called him The Fish.”A beloved and highly respected figure on the American racing landscape for parts of five decades, Scott Stevens will receive the Woolf Award Trophy in a Santa Anita Winner’s Circle ceremony on an as-yet to be determined date later this winter or spring.(The legendary Hall of Fame jockey George Woolf died at age 35 following a spill on Santa Anita’s Club House turn on Jan. 3, 1946.  The winner of the inaugural Santa Anita Handicap aboard Azucar on Feb. 23, 1935, Woolf also guided the immortal Seabiscuit to victory over 1937 Triple Crown winner and reigning Horse of the Year War Admiral in a winner-take-all match race at Pimlico Race Course on Nov. 1, 1938).last_img read more

Spurs to offer Son counselling as Ben Davies insists team will rally around him

first_imgTOTTENHAM left-back Ben Davies has insisted the squad will rally behind Son Heung-min with the club to offer the winger psychological counselling.The 27-year-old was left in tears after his tackle on Andre Gomes left the Everton midfielder with a dislocated and fractured ankle during yesterday’s 1-1 draw.1 Ben Davies has insisted that Spurs will rally behind Son Heung-min after the Angel Gomes injurySouth Korean international Son was sent off over the challenge, despite referee Martin Atkinson initially pulling out the yellow card to book the player.The ex-Hamburg winger was so distraught that he was unable to pick his head up in the dressing room, as Everton players came in to console him after the full-time whistle.According to the Athletic, Son will be given psychological counselling by Spurs who will do all they can to help him.Son’s team-mate Davies has claimed that the former Bayer Leverkusen winger has been left “broken” by the incident.The Welsh ace said: “We will try to pick him up as much as we can. It’s tough right now.”It is just about making sure that he realises he didn’t go out there to hurt anyone, he thinks that people may see that in him, but it is not the case.“It’s one of those things. There were probably three more tackles that were worse than the incident that happened. It’s a freak moment in football. Son can’t let himself be too down about it.“As a group we have to pull together now. That’s what we said on the pitch, pulling together when times are tough.”He added: “It shakes you up, it really does. It doesn’t matter if it is your team-mate or not. You can see the emotion across the pitch.MOST READ IN FOOTBALLTHROUGH ITRobbie Keane reveals Claudine’s father was ’50-50′ in coronavirus battleTOP SELLERGavin Whelan has gone from League of Ireland to David Beckham’s InstagramExclusiveRIYAD RAIDMan City’s Riyad Mahrez has three luxury watches stolen in £500,000 raidPicturedAN EYEFULMeet Playboy model and football agent Anamaria Prodan bidding to buy her own clubI SAW ROORodallega saw Rooney ‘drinking like madman’ & Gerrard ‘on bar dancing shirtless’NEXT STEPJonny Hayes set to move to English Championship having been let go by CelticSon breaks down in tears as Gomes screams in agony from broken ankleProof Martin Atkinson changed his mind on Son red card after horror Gomes injuryPrem release statement on why Son was sent off after Gomes leg horrorEverton stars including Coleman went into Spurs dressing room to comfort SonSon ‘in Spurs changing room in tears refusing to lift head’ after Gomes woeTosun recalls harrowing moment Andre Gomes lay crying in shock with his eyes wide open after Son tackle “Nobody goes on the pitch to hurt anyone, especially not somebody like Son, who is a bit broken to deal with what has happened.“The team just have to sometimes say these things happen in football and, as horrible as it is, they do. For us it is just hoping Andre Gomes is okay now.”Everton confirmed earlier today that Gomes’ surgery was successful, with the player expected to make a full recovery.last_img read more

Tottenham vs West Ham FIFA 20 match: Sessegnon facing Antonio TONIGHT

first_imgAlex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:21 pmLO CELSO STRIKEHere was the opener from Giovanni Lo Celso.Nice strike it was too! FOOTBALL isn’t returning in the near future, so Tottenham and West Ham are turning to the next best thing.Stars from both teams – Ryan Sessegnon and Michail Antonio – are settling this London rivalry with controllers in hand as they face-off on EA Sports FIFA 20.Start time: 8pm.Live stream: Twitch/WHFC website.Forfeit: Loser required to give apology wearing other team’s shirt.Follow all the virtual drama with our live blog below… Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:11 pmPEEEEEEEP!THAT’S HALF TIMETOTTENHAM 2 WEST HAM 0Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:10 pmTOTTENHAM 2 WEST HAM 045. Moura down the right for Spurs, he has good width in the attack, but he gives it away.Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:10 pmTOTTENHAM 2 WEST HAM 042. Playing Mauricio Pochettino a big compliment on commentary now.Awk. Warrrrrd.Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:09 pmTOTTENHAM 2 WEST HAM 037. Lovely one-two between Moura and Alli puts the Brazilian through on goal.All he has to do is hit the target. Sessegnon’s a bit of a baller with this game.Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:08 pmGOOOOOAAAAALLLLL SPURS!!IT’S LUCAS MOURA!!Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:08 pmTOTTENHAM 1 WEST HAM 033. Son again on the left, beats his man but the cross can’t find Alli.Load more entries… Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:22 pmSTATSHere’s how it unfolded then.Breathless stuff… completely dominated by Ryan Sessegnon’s Spurs.center_img Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:34 pmWE’LL AWAIT THE RESULTSCan’t wait to see Antonio in Spurs’ kit.Watch this space to see when that pic drops.Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:30 pmAWKWARDLoser now has to wear the other player’s kit (not just the shirt).Them’s the rules Michail. Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:19 pmBRAGGING RIGHTSLooks like Michail Antonio will have to wear a Sprus shirt as forfeit then!Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:19 pmPEEEEEEEP!!THAT’S IT AT THE TOTTENHAM STADIUMSPURS 2 WEST HAM 0Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:18 pmTOTTENHAM 2 WEST HAM 089. Only a few seconds left for either team to score. Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:18 pmTOTTENHAM 2 WEST HAM 086. Son hits the post!!!Alli comes in with the follow-up but he’s offside! Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:17 pmTOTTENHAM 2 WEST HAM 083. Counter from the corner for the Hammers.But Lloris saves from Anderson on the left, he was one on one!Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:17 pmSAVED AGAIN!!!KANE CAN’T SCORE FROM THE SPOT!Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:16 pmTOTTENHAM 2 WEST HAM 079. ANOTHER PENALTY!DIOP FOULS AGAIN!Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:16 pmTOTTENHAM 2 WEST HAM 076. Another massive chance with the header, but the keeper saves it.And again from Moura, point blank save with only the goalie to beat! Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:16 pmBUT IT’S SAVED!KANE CAN’T CONVERT IT!Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:15 pmTOTTENHAM 2 WEST HAM 067. Antonio is slowly getting back into this game now.But West Ham’s attack is a bit toothless.Spurs have a great counter as Alli feeds Kane… but Diop commits a foul in the boxPENALTY!!!Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:14 pmTOTTENHAM 2 WEST HAM 064. West Ham can’t get it out of their own half, but patience eventually pays off.Anderson has a good chance on the left, but he squanders possession inside the box!Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:13 pmTOTTENHAM 2 WEST HAM 053. Antonio is trying to get West Ham to build it up slowly now.He’s made a formation change at half time… not working so far though, they keep giving it away in dangerous positions.Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:12 pmTOTTENHAM 2 WEST HAM 047. Ooo lovely combination from Sessegnon, Kane, Son and Lo Celso sees the Argentine get a shot off but it’s blocked.West Ham go down the other end and Lanzini has a chance… straight at the keeper!Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:11 pmPEEEPHere comes the second half!Alex Terrell21 Mar 2020, 8:11 pmTHERE’S YOUR PROOF.ONLY ONE SIDE IN IT SO FAR.last_img read more

24th SP Sports Awards a success

first_img138 nominations were received this year for the 11 different categories.Australian professional basketballer and sports icon, Lauren Jackson was the guest speaker on the night.The awards on the night went to:Male Athlete of the Year: Ryan Pini, Female Athlete of the Year: Linda Pulsan, Team of the Year: Women’s Va’a V12 Team, National Performance of the Year: Lae City Dwellers, Community Sports Initiative: New Ireland Triathlon Association, Junior Male Athlete of the Year: Thadeus Katua, Junior Female Athlete of the Year: Violet Apisah, Best Sportsperson with a Disability: Sent Anis, Sports Official of the Year: Johnathan Kassman, Sports Media of the Year: NBC- 2015 Pacific Games Radio Coverage, Sports Photo of the Year: “For You PNG” – Mark Talia – Toea Wisil 100m Finish.Photo Credit: SP Brewerylast_img read more

Inter already has spare for Lautaro

first_imgAubameyang is living a bittersweet season in Arsenal. His good performance (14 goals in 23 Premier games, 16 in all competitions) clashes with the irregularity of the Gunner team, which just adds 31 points and is 10 in the Champions League.The Gabonese striker is valued at 70 million although Arsenal’s need to transfer it could lower the price.A signing in ManchesterIn addition to the Aubameyang option, the one they claim will also arrive will be Tahith Chong. The Dutchman has a contract with Manchester United until June of this year but has no intention of renewing and would arrive for free at Giuseppe Meazza. Martin Rickett / PA Wire / dpa & nbsp; (Martin Rickett / PA Wire / dpa) ‘); return false; “class =” item-multimedia “>Martin Rickett / PA Wire / dpa (Martin Rickett / PA Wire / dpa) Romelu Lukaku could have a new forward partner next season. Lautaro Martínez is in the most immediate plans of Real Madrid and, above all, of Barcelona and could leave Milan in July for 111 million euros.If this operation is finally given, Gazzetta dello Sport ensures that Inter has already chosen the replacement for the Argentine striker: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. The Gabonese striker, who already rang hard to arrive in this winter market, has not yet renewed with Arsenal a contract that ends in 2021. Except surprise, this will be the last summer in which the gunners can get a good figure for The Africanlast_img read more

Atlético’s ERTE approved

first_imgThe General Directorate of Labor of the Community of Madrid, through the Ministry of Economy, Employment and Competitiveness, has approved the ERTE that Atlético decided to carry out on 453 workers due to the crisis derived from COVID-19. Atlético decided to carry out the ERTE to safeguard the economic viability of the club, as Miguel Ángel Gil, CEO of Atlético later issued in a public note.In the letter from the General Directorate of Labor, this body states that “the existence of force majeure causes by the company CLUB ATLETICO DE MADRID SAD corresponding to this, in accordance with the provisions of article 33.3 of Royal Decree 1483/2012, of October 29, the decision on the suspension of the contracts of 453 workers listed in the annex to the file, during the requested period that in no case should exceed the duration of the period of validity of the measures derived from the declaration of the state of alarm, in which it is justified. “ Atlético decided to carry out an ERTE on the workers who at this time of the state of alarm cannot perform their functions: store workers that the club It has both in the Wanda Metropolitano stadium and in different areas of Madrid and also the employees of The academy, technicians and assistants who work in Atlético’s base football and who are currently unemployed.The General Directorate of Labor says that Atlético “You must notify the resolution to the workers’ representative or, failing that, to the affected workerss, which may challenge it before the Social Jurisdiction. “Click here to see the resolution of the ERTE of Atlético de Madrid by the General Directorate of Labor of the Ministry of Economy, Employment and Competitiveness.last_img read more

Lokeren files for bankruptcy

first_imgThe Belgian football league announced on Monday that Sporting Lokeren in the third division will no longer be part of the professional competitionl after the Termonde Commercial Court (Northwest) declare bankruptcy of the team and the club announced that it will not appeal the decision.“The decision of the commercial court means that, according to the statutes, Sporting Lokeren is no longer part of the Pro League and will not contest the (third category) 1B next season, “the Belgian league said in a statement.The club president had previously announced on Facebook that the team had failed to find a way to alleviate Sporting Lokeren’s 5 million debt., founded in 1970 after the merger of Standaard and Racing Lokeren. “To my deep regret and great sadness, I must announce that, despite all our efforts, we have not been able to find the necessary investors in time to satisfy the maturities,” its president, Louis De Vries, wrote on the club’s Facebook page.The club has not paid its salaries to employees and players, who stopped working on February 28 due to the stoppage of competitions due to the coronavirus, in the same way that some suppliers’ invoices had not been paid, the newspaper “Dernière Heure” noted.Sporting Lokeren twice won the Belgian Cup (2012 and 2014) and had played in the Europa League on several occasions.The club lost the first category of Belgian football in 1993, regained it three years later, and dropped again in 2016, Prelude to the fall to the third category in 2019 and the current bankruptcy.last_img read more

Ajax will not donate as much money to the other teams in the league

first_imgThe humanitarian crisis that the planet is experiencing is historical and undoubtedly the most important, but the consequences will also be seen – and are already being seen – in the economic sphere. It will be a difficult time and organizations are improvising measures so that the damage is as small as possible. One of the ideas of the KNVB, the Dutch soccer federation, is for the clubs to distribute their revenue from European competitions this season to the other clubs in the league out of “moral obligation”. Especially and being the one that receives the most money, Ajax.The clubs are already obliged to distribute a small percentage of this UEFA money for the development of football in the country. In the case of Ajax, he already pays 2.6 million to the Eredivisie and also has always been in favor of helping in a common emergency fund of the league. However, and as reported by some local media this morning, Now the Amsterdam club is not there to give away money and will not contribute to that proposal as much as the KNVB wants. Ajax is the team that will receive the most from UEFA in the Netherlands, but also the one that will lose the most due to the coronavirus crisis. It is estimated that he could stop earning more than 50 million euros for a season behind closed doors. One of the AZ proposals is to donate 25%, something that does not even occur to the management of Van der Sar. They are in favor of donating money: “It stands to reason that as the largest club in the country, we help other clubs survive”, explained the exporter. But you also know that Ajax “He will have a difficult time.”That 25% of the talk could add more than the accumulated between AZ Alkmaar (previous to the Champions League), Feyenoord (Europa League) and PSV and Willem II (previous to the Europa League). Obviously, it seems somewhat excessive for a club that will suffer more than any other from this economic crisis. They will donate, but not everything they ask for.last_img read more

The future belongs to Atlético

first_imgThe rojiblanco club changed its house three seasons ago and the Wanda Metropolitano, with a capacity of 68,450 spectators, has become a benchmark stadium not only in Spain but in European football. A stadium praised by everyone, including rivals and where average attendance is above 85 percent. In other words, Atlético feels very sheltered at home, in front of their own, as it has always been.The data that makes the managers of Atlético the most excited refers to the large number of underage members. 30 percent of the rojiblancos partners are minors, which indicates that the future is guaranteed. The number of boys and girls who are linked to the entity at very young ages is increasing. The club dedicates one game to the year, a meeting that is already an essential appointment for the rojiblancos fans.Another interesting fact to describe the explosion at a social level that Atlético has experienced is the one related to its rocks, one of the great motors of the entity. Atlético has 835 clubs spread across Spain and around the world. There are a couple of them about to create new ones, one of them in Argentina. At a social level, Atlético does not stop growing. And that is a plus for an entity that celebrates its birthday thinking of giving the greatest joy to its fans and standing in the Champions League final in Istanbul. Atlético has turned 117 years old and has done so under very special circumstances, in full crisis provoked by the crisis derived from COVID-19. Atlético is among the eight best clubs in Europe and in the Spanish championship struggles to get into Champions positions. But a quick X-ray of the Madrid entity indicates that it is in the process of expansion, with more members and supporters than ever and increasingly closer to the other two greats of Spanish football.Atlético long ago exceeded a figure that seemed impossible, that of 100,000 members. Reaching that number was the great challenge of an entity that not long ago went through great economic and social problems. Atlético now has 130,400 members (between subscribers and non-subscribers) and the number continues to grow. Even in these weeks without competition, fans continue to call the offices of the Wanda Metropoilitano to become partners. No one knows where Atlético’s top will be. The rojiblanco club has members in all the provinces of the Spanish territory, something very significant. It is no longer a local club, with strong roots in Madrid and nearby cities, but rather a global entity.last_img read more