We’re T-Minus 11 Weeks Away From The Start of the 2017 College Football Season

11 More Weeks.jpg

By NoontimeSports.com (@NoontimeSports) 

As of today – yes, Thursday, June 15th – we are 11 weeks away from kicking-off a brand new season of college football. And yes … we are psyched to bring you a brand new season of coverage!

11 weeks from tonight (Thursday, August 31st), we’ll have three games to follow. And they are the following:

  • Bentley at West Chester, 6 p.m.
  • Saint Anselm at Wagner, 6 p.m.
  • Coast Guard vs. Alfred State, 7 p.m.

So, mark your calendar for August 31st, the night we return to college football coverage here in New England!

Make sure to follow Noontime Sports on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube! Also, stay connected with Noontime Sports by joining our email list TODAY! 

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: BCEagles.com)

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

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.

QUICK HITS:

 * 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 Football: Bentley’s Hill & Guadagnoli Receive All-Super Region 1 Recognition from Beyond Sports Network

By NoontimeSports.com 

Courtesy of the Bentley Sports Information Department, here’s today’s release about senior Jeff Hill and graduate student Danny Guadagnoli receiving All-Super Region 1 Recognition from Beyond Sports Network:

WALTHAM, Mass. – Bentley University senior wide receiver Jeff Hill (Mansfield/Mansfield HD) was named to the Beyond Sports Network All-Super Region 1 first team, and his quarterback, graduate student Danny Guadagnoli (Framingham/Framingham HS), received second-team All-Region recognition.

The six-foot-four Hill led the Northeast-10 in receiving yards (1,113) and TD receptions (12) during a season that saw him average 6.2 yards per game and 16.4 per reception (16.4). He had five 100-yard games and tied for 12th in Division II in touchdown catches.

Hill, Bentley’s first three-time first-team All-Northeast-10 honoree since current Dallas Cowboy lineman Mackenzy Bernadeau from 2005-07, finished his career as the third most prolific receiver in program history. He caught 200 passes as a Falcon, good for 3,489 yards and 37 TDs. Among football players who were active in 2014, only eight had more career touchdown receptions.

Second-team All-Region is latest honor for Guadagnoli, who has been chosen as the Offensive Player of the Year in the Northeast-10, the recipient of the Agganis Award from the New England Football Writers and the Division II Swede Nelson Award Winner by the Gridiron Club of Greater Boston.

The three-year starting QB and two-year captain concluded his career number two in most of Bentley’s passing rankings with his totals including 9,175 passing yards, 69 TD passes and 9,702 yards of total offense. This past season, he broke the school record for passing yards for the second straight campaign, finishing with 3,443 along with 31 TDs.

Bentley won four of its last five in 2014 to finish at 5-6 overall.

Mass. College Football: Bentley’s Baron Named To Fred Mitchell Award List

By NoontimeSports.com 

Bentley University’s Michael Baron was recently named to the Fred Mitchell Award Watch List, as announced in a release yesterday, which we’ve provided below courtesy of the Bentley Sports Information Office:

    WALTHAM, Mass. – Bentley University junior Michael Baron (Medfield/ Roxbury Latin School) is one of 12 Division II placekickers named to the Fred Mitchell Award Watch List for excellence on the football field and in the community.

A total of 36 kickers from Football Championship Subdivision, Division II, Division III, NAIA and NJCAA institutions were included on the list.

Chris Kearney, the award’s Selection Committee Chairman said, “These placekickers are impressive on the football field and off the field representing their schools, their football teams, their conferences, their communities, their families and themselves.  We look forward to following their accomplishments during the next few months.  Of the 36 kickers, 21 led their team in scoring last season and 12 finished second on their team in scoring so there is a lot of scoring power returning this season.”

Baron is one of those who were second on their team in scoring in 2013. He finished with 64 points as he put nine of 13 field goals through the uprights and converted 37 of 38 extra point attempts.  He finished second in the Northeast-10 in field goal percentage, PAT percentage and field goals made, and was named the NE-10 co-Special Teams Player of the Week Oct. 7.

Baron scored 14 points in that game against the Hawks, with his four field goals tying the school and conference record.

Off the field, Baron visits the Deutsches Altenheim nursing home in West Roxbury where he spends time visiting with the residents.

Mitchell said, “It is a pleasure to include these fine young men on the Watch List for this Award, which is celebrating its sixth year in 2014.  We are delighted to recognize them based on outstanding performance in the community and expectations going into the 2014 college football season.” Mitchell is a Wittenberg University Athletic Hall of Famer who set an NCAA college division record for career scoring, an author, a philanthropist and a Chicago Tribune sports columnist.

Bentley opens its season at home on Sept. 6 against Mercyhurst University.

Mass. College Football: Kavanaugh Returns To Bentley As Head Football Coach

By NoontimeSports.com 

Courtesy of the Bentley University sports information department, here’s today’s release about Bill Kavanaugh, who will be the new head coach of the Falcons football team:

WALTHAM, Mass. – Bill Kavanaugh, a 2004 graduate of Bentley University and currently the Director of Player Personnel for Penn State University Football, has been named the head football coach at his alma mater, Athletics Director Bob DeFelice announced this morning.

“I am excited for the opportunity to lead the football program at my alma mater, a place I have held in high regard since stepping on campus as a freshman,” said Kavanaugh, a native of Dartmouth. “The opportunity to return home to Boston and lead a program with such a great tradition is a dream come true.”

Kavanaugh, a co-captain of Bentley’s 2003 team that earned the program’s first-ever NCAA Division II tournament berth, returns to Bentley with nine years of college football coaching and administrative experience under his belt, the last six as part of the staff at Penn State, where he worked under Bill O’Brien and Joe Paterno.

“I’m thrilled that Bill has accepted our offer to become our head football coach,” said DeFelice. “He displayed his leadership ability as a team captain ten years ago and has since grown into an outstanding young man who will be a tremendous leader for our football program and Bentley University.”

Bentley Vice President for Student Affairs Andrew Shepardson said “It’s already a thrill to welcome back to campus a graduate who has gone out into the world and done great things, and is now returning to contribute to his alma mater.”

“I hope to build on the tradition of playing tough, winning football with focused student-athletes and high character people,” said the new Falcon head coach. “The standard at Bentley has been set high by Coach Yetten, Coach Boerman and their staffs.”

Kavanaugh, 31, has been the Director of Player Personnel for the Nittany Lions since April 2012, with his duties including directing all aspects of recruiting, managing a staff that included 14 coaches, a three-person personnel office and 30 interns, and responsibility for the oversight of a 115-player roster.

Before being elevated to that position, Kavanaugh was Penn State’s Recruiting Coordinator from January 2011-March 2012, the team’s Wide Receivers Coach from November 2011-January 2012 (including the TicketCity Bowl at the Cotton Bowl) and a graduate assistant coach, working with the running backs, from July 2008-January 2011.

“Bill Kavanaugh was a tremendous asset to us here at Penn State University,” praised O’Brien, who recently completed his second year as head coach at Penn State following five years with the New England Patriots. “He was involved in all facets of our program and I credit him with much of our success in recruiting and all of the things that went on behind the scenes here at Penn State.

“Bill will be a fantastic head coach at Bentley University,” continued O’Brien. “Bentley is very lucky to have a guy like Bill Kavanaugh.”

Kavanaugh began his coaching career serving under his father, Bill Kavanaugh, Sr., at UMass-Dartmouth during the 2004 and 2006 seasons. He worked with the Corsairs’ linebackers and special teams during his tenure and was also UMass-Dartmouth’s Event Coordinator during 2006-07.

Kavanaugh coached the defensive line at Stonehill College in 2007 and spend fourth months on the Bentley coaching staff in 2008 before getting the opportunity to coach under Paterno while pursuing his Master’s degree. He received his Master of Education in educational leadership in December 2010.

Bentley associate athletics director Kevin Loftus, who chaired the selection committee, said there were a number of factors that made Kavanaugh the choice. “Bill knows us, and he’s both an alumnus and a team captain. Bentley is a special place to him and he’s invested in the program.

“Having grown up as the son of a football coach, coaching is in his blood. He’s ready to be a head coach and he is experienced despite his young age. He’s been on the field with Paterno and he essentially served as the general manager under O’Brien.

“Over the past six years, Bill has been involved with the best-of-the-best, working at one of the nation’s premier academic institutions and competing in one of the country’s top athletic conferences, the Big Ten” concluded Loftus.

Kavanaugh was a four-year starter on the defensive line for Bentley from 2000-03, helping the Falcons to a 29-5 record over his final three seasons. He finished his career with 149 tackles, including 47.5 for losses, and 24.5 sacks. The majority of those sacks came as a junior in 2002 when he shared the NCAA Division II lead with 13.5 and was tied for second in sacks per game.

Honors included two-time first-team All-Northeast-10 Conference, 2003 d2football All-Northeast Region second team, 2002 Football Gazette Division II All-Northeast Region second team, 2002 Football Gazette Division II Mid-Major Defensive Lineman of the Year and 2002 Football Gazette Division II Mid-Major All-America. He was also Bentley’s defensive Most Improved Player as a junior.

“I look forward to building relationships with faculty, staff and the Bentley student body as we work together to cultivate America’s future business leaders,” stated Kavanaugh. “I look forward to meeting the team when they return from break and hitting the recruiting trail to bring more fine individuals to be part of a great team.”

Kavanaugh and his wife, Kristen, have one daughter, Anna, who will be one in late January.