Lax Notebook: MLL Announces New Commissioner, College News & Notes

NS lacrosse Notebook

By Matt Noonan (@MattNoonan11) 

Lacrosse season has officially begun – well, technically it started in December with the National Lacrosse League (NLL) – but below are some news and notes from the Lax World, which you should know about or may want to know now that one of my favorite sports is back in action!

Let’s begin with some exciting news from Major League Lacrosse (MLL), which announced earlier this week that Alexander P. “Sandy” Brown has been named the second commissioner. Brown replaces Dave Gross, who was the league’s initial commissioner.

Marissa Ingemi has a great piece about the new MLL commissioner from US Lacrosse Magazine about his plans to increase the league’s brand through Digital Media, while collaborating with other leagues.

Keep an eye on Massachusetts’ Jake Horwath this season, who will look to guide the Bobcats of Frostburg State to a Capital Athletic Conference (CAC) crown. The Bobcats will certainly be a team to watch in Division III this season – great read from Ed Lee of the Baltimore Sun. Lee also had a great preview on the St. Mary’s (Md.) Seahawks, who will also look to contend for a CAC title, too.

The Boston College women’s lacrosse team was picked to finish third in the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) Preseason Coaches Poll – North Carolina was picked to place first followed by Syracuse University. A pair of New England student-athletes – Dempsey Arsenault (New Hampton, N.H.) and Elizabeth Miller (New Canaan, Conn.) – were named to the Preseason All-ACC Team.

The Holy Cross men’s lacrosse team will look to continue its success from a year ago – the Crusaders won its first-ever Patriot League tournament game last spring – when they begin its 2018 campaign on Saturday, February 10 against Providence College.

Yale University was tabbed the favorite in the Ivy League, while Princeton University and the University of Pennsylvania rounded out the top three spots.

Per US Lacrosse Magazine, the Division III women’s lacrosse game will be sped-up this season, thanks to some new rules, which will make the game faster.

Syracuse women’s lacrosse will open its season against the University of Connecticut – get excited, Big East fans!

In Case You Missed It (ICYMI)! 

Earlier this month, Hendrix University captured its season-opener against Southwestern (Texas), thanks to a pair of goals and one ground ball from Lexington, Massachusetts native Garrett Brown.

The Northeast-10 Conference (NE-10) unveiled its preseason coaches poll, which found Merrimack College atop the men’s poll and Adelphi atop the women’s poll.

Taylor Bastien was tabbed the new head coach of the Bentley University women’s lacrosse team last Friday. Bastien was recently the coach of the Simmons College women’s lacrosse team, but competed for the Falcons as a student-athlete at Bentley.

REPORT: Boston College’s Don Brown Named University of Michigan Defensive Coordinator

Boston College's defensive coordinator Don Brown will be the next defensive coordinator for the University of Michigan football team. (Photo Credit: The AP)

Boston College’s defensive coordinator Don Brown will be the next defensive coordinator for the University of Michigan football team. (Photo Credit: The AP)


Initially reported by Sports Illustrated, various reports have confirmed over the past few hours that Boston College’s Don Brown has been named the University of Michigan football team’s defensive coordinator.

Brown leaves Chestnut Hill after three seasons with the Eagles as the defensive coordinator. This past fall, Boston College finished first nationally in total defense this past season, allowing 254 yards per game, while ranking fourth in scoring defense, yielding an average of 15.3 points per game.

D.J. Durkin, who was the Wolverines’ defensive coordinator this past fall, left the Ann Arbor campus to become the University of Maryland’s head coach.

Mass. College Football: Five Games To Watch This Weekend (Week Three Predictions)

Harvard University senior Scott Hosch will commence the season under center for the Crimson. (Photo Credit:

Harvard University senior Scott Hosch will commence the season under center for the Crimson. (Photo Credit:

By Matt Noonan 

Another weekend of college football has arrived – hooray!

Below are five games to watch/follow (and predictions) – make sure to circle back on on our social media channels this weekend (Facebook and Twitter) for updates, scores and news.

Merrimack at Assumption (Friday, Sept. 18 at 7 p.m.): Both teams will look to capture their first Northeast-10 Conference victory this evening as the Greyhounds host the Warriors in what promises to be an exciting ‘Friday Night Lights’ contest. Assumption’s Brendan Tobey is second in the conference in passing yards per game (246.5) and has tossed three touchdowns thus far, while Alex Shain is the top rusher in touchdowns (three) and yards per game (126.0). Merrimack’s defense is sixth in the NE-10, but tied for fourth in sacks (four). Brian Carroll has had an impressive season for the Warriors on defense, tallying 20 total tackles, including 17 solo stops, so expect him and his teammates to challenge Tobey and Shain. PREDICTION: Assumption 25, Merrimack 23 

Boston College vs. No. 9 Florida State Univ. (Friday, Sept. 18 at 8 p.m.): Following a pair of non-conference clashes, the Eagles host their first conference contest against an impressive Seminoles squad that captured their initial games against Texas State (59-16) and South Florida (34-14). Dalvin Cook is second in the nation in rushing, compiling 422 yards on the ground and five touchdowns. The Eagles defense will need to focus on Cook, while winning the time of possession on offense. PREDICTION: Florida State 34, Boston College 20 

Harvard at Rhode Island (Saturday, Sept. 19 at 1 p.m.): The Crimson’s title defense begins tomorrow as they travel one state over to face a Rhode Island, which has lost a pair of games this season, including a 47-0 setback to Syracuse. Harvard signal-caller Scott Hosch will start the season under center, looking to guide the Crimson to their fourth consecutive week one victory. PREDICTION: Harvard 30, URI 17 

American International College (AIC) at New Haven (Saturday, Sept. 19 at 1 p.m.): This should be an interesting match-up with both squads claiming NE-10 victories last weekend. New Haven rallied to defeat Bentley with a late field goal, while AIC quarterback Kwame Jarvis tossed a trio of touchdown passes in the Yellow Jackets’ 44-13 victory over So. Connecticut State. Andre Anderson of New Haven is second in the conference in rushing yards, averaging 110 yards over two games, while locating the end zone twice. Jerrod Shelby has paced the Yellow Jackets’ defense with a team-high 17 total tackles (eight solo stops) and one sack (six yard loss). New Haven captured this contest last year, registering a pair of touchdowns in the fourth quarter to claim a 31-24 victory. PREDICTION: AIC 28, New Haven 25 

UMass vs. Temple (Saturday, Sept. 19 at 3 p.m./Gillette Stadium): The Owls – currently receiving votes in the AP Top 25 and Coaches Poll – have won back-to-back games, including an opening week victory against Penn State (27-10). Last week, the Owls defense intercepted Cincinnati quarterback Gunner Kiel four times en route to 34-26 victory. This week, Temple travels takes on a UMass squad that lost its opener against Colorado, 48-14, but wide receiver Tajae Sharpe finished the game with 11 catches for 138 yards. The Minutemen will need to limit their mistakes from one week ago to defeat a talented Temple squad. PREDICTION: Temple 31, UMass 26 

Mass. College Football: Links From Around The Web Heading Into Week Three


The third week of the college football season begins this evening with a non-Massachusetts contest. Luckily, we don’t have to wait too long as some games kick-off tomorrow evening, but here are some links and news from around the web to get you set for another weekend of football.

Mass. College Football Notebook: Week Two Notes & Takeaways

Boston College's Troy Flutie registered one touchdown pass in his team's 76-0 win over Howard last Saturday. (Photo Credit:

Boston College’s Troy Flutie registered one touchdown pass in his team’s 76-0 win over Howard last Saturday. (Photo Credit:

By Matt Noonan 

The second week of the college football season in Massachusetts was a wild one. There were some interesting outcomes and upsets, along with numerous teams stretching its win total to two games.

Here are a few notes and takeaways from the second weekend of the season:

* Boston College made headlines this weekend, routing Howard, 76-0. The Eagles held the Bison to just 11 yards of total offense, while quarterback Troy Flutie – the former Natick High School signal-caller – completed seven of eight passes for 88 yards and one touchdown.

The Eagles, winners of back-to-back contests, host Florida State University on Friday, September 18 at 8:00 p.m. This will be Boston College’s first Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) clash of the season.

* UMass head coach Mark Whipple wasn’t too pleased with his team’s performance against Colorado, stating in a press release, “Give Colorado a lot of credit; they played better in all phases.”

The Minutemen dropped their season-opener to the Buffaloes by a score of 48-14. They registered one touchdown in the first and second quarter, respectively, while Colorado ended the game with 558 yards of total offense.

The Minutemen will look to rebound on Saturday when they host Temple at Gillette Stadium – the team’s home opener.

* As noted in the Northeast-10 Conference weekly report, Assumption College kicker Cole Tracy broke a pair of conference records this past weekend – most field goals in a game (six field goals) and most points by a kicker (19 points). Tracy is in his second season with the Greyhounds and has converted seven field goals this season.

* Sticking with special teams, the NE-10 weekly report also highlighted Bentley University’s Tyler Ford, who matched the Falcons’ program record for the longest punt, a 68-yard boot. Ford, who hails from Amherst, New Hampshire, registered five punts last Friday in his team’s heartbreaking defeat to New Haven. He did, however, record a quartet of punts that landed between the Chargers’ 20-yard-line and goal line.

* Stonehill College won its second consecutive contests, defeating Merrimack College, 24-20. Quarterback Matt Foltz, who was tabbed the NE-10 Co-Offensive Player of the Week, engineered his first career fourth quarter comeback, while finishing the contest 22-of-36 for 231 yards and three touchdowns. Foltz also rushed for 25 yards on 11 attempts.

* Becker College’s Jacob Holmes was tabbed the Eastern Collegiate Football Conference (ECFC) Offensive Player of the Week after an extremely impressive performance against MIT. Holmes set and tied eight program records, while averaging 13.6 yards per carry en rote to 232 rushing yards and 279 all-purpose yards. He rushed for a 93-yard touchdown in the third quarter – the longest run of the season by any collegiate football player in the country at any level, according to the ECFC weekly report.

Besides his impressive ground game, Holmes also made headlines by booting a trio of field goals and four extra points for a single-game record of 13 points.

* Nichols College quarterback Michael McCourt was tabbed New England Football Conference (NEFC) Offensive Player of the Week following his team’s initial win against Anna Maria College.

McCourt, who made is first collegiate start at quarterback, concluded the contest 21-of-26 for a school-record 444 yards and six touchdowns. According to the Nichols College Athletics website, McCourt concluded the first quarterback with five completions for 165 yards and three touchdowns.

* WPI picked up its second consecutive ‘Friday Night Lights’ victory, defeating cross-town rival Worcester State University, 27-13. Quarterback Dan Eckler completed 21-of-31 attempts for 381 yards and one touchdown – he did not toss an interception. Zach Grasis rumbled for 74 yards and Brandon Eccher recorded a season-high 168 receiving yards and one touchdown.


 * Harvard University kicks-off its season next Saturday, September 19 when they travel to URI for a 1:00 p.m. kick-off. The Crimson was picked to capture the Ancient Eight this season, as noted in the preseason poll.

* We’re two weeks away from starting another New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) season. Amherst, Tufts and Williams each begin its campaign on the road, Saturday, September 26.

Mass. College Hockey: Former BC Right-Wing Hayes Inks 3-Year Deal With Boston Bruins

By Matt Noonan 

Former Boston College men’s ice hockey right-wing Jimmy Hayes inked his name on a three-year contract with the Boston Bruins this afternoon, which was confirmed through a press release by the team.

Hayes was traded to Boston last Wednesday in a deal that sent Reilly Smith and Marc Savard’s contract to the Florida Panthers.

Former Boston College men's ice hockey right wing Jimmy Hayes inked his name on a three-year deal with the Boston Bruins. (Photo Credit:

Former Boston College men’s ice hockey right wing Jimmy Hayes inked his name on a three-year deal with the Boston Bruins. (Photo Credit:

A Dorchester native, Hayes was a second round pick by the Toronto Maple Leafs in 2008. He was traded to the Chicago Blackhawks in 2010 and skated in part of three seasons – 43 games to be exact – before he was dealt to the Florida Panthers during the 2013-14 campaign. With the Panthers, Hayes appeared in 125 games and recorded 30 goals and 23 assists. His best season as a pro was this past year where he registered 19 goals and 16 assists (35 points) in 72 games.

Hayes spent three seasons with Boston College, tallying 42 goals and 39 assists for 81 points. His best season with the Eagles occurred during the 2010-11 season when he netted a career-best 21 goals, along with 12 assists. Boston College captured the Boston Beanpot and Hockey East regular season and tournament crowns before concluding their campaign in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament.

In 2010, Hayes and the Eagles defeated Wisconsin in the NCAA Championship game, 5-0, to claim the program’s fourth national championship.

Mass. College Hockey: Record Number of Hockey East Players Taken in NHL Draft


Courtesy of the Hockey East Association and Director of communications, Brian Smith, here is this morning’s release on this past weekend’s National Hockey League (NHL) Entry Draft that saw a record 23 current or future players selected:

WAKEFIELD, Mass. – A record 23 current or future Hockey East players were selected in the 2015 National Hockey League Entry Draft, including Boston University’s Jack Eichel (Rd. 1, Pick 2/Buffalo Sabres) and Boston College’s Noah Hanifin (Rd. 1, Pick 5/Carolina Hurricanes). The two rising sophomores, who were each selected in the top five, marked in the attached release.

In addition to Eichel and Hanifin, two other current Hockey East skaters heard their named called in Sunrise, Florida as BU rising sophomore A.J. Greer (Rd. 2, Pick 39/Colorado Avalanche) and Merrimack rising sophomore Brett Seney (Rd. 6, Pick 157/New Jersey Devils) were chosen. Also included in this year’s crop were 13 incoming freshmen for the 2015-16 season, five skaters verbally committed for 2016-17 and one player verbally committed for 2017-18.

In total, the 23 players with Hockey East ties represent 41% of the 56 current or future NCAA players selected.

The Hockey East Association is a 12-team Division-I college men’s hockey conference founded in 1984 and also sponsors a nine-team Division-I women’s league that began play in 2002-03.