Who has the best lights in town? Vote now for your favorite in our holiday lights contest.
Thursday, May 23, 2013
For the ACC baseball teams that have battled to qualify for the conference tournament on a regular basis, there's no break coming with expansion.
Newcomers in 2014 will include Pittsburgh, which has the 2013 Big East coach of the year in Joe Jordano , who has directed the Panthers to the first 40-win regular season in school history, and Notre Dame, which has the Big East player of the year in Eric Jagielo .
Joining the ACC in 2015 will be Louisville, which won the Big East regular-season title and carried a 46-10 record into the postseason tournament. Louisville, Pittsburgh and Notre Dame finished 1-2-3 in the regular season.
Also migrating to the ACC from the Big East is Syracuse, which has not had an intercollegiate baseball program since 1972 but does not lack baseball history.
The Orangemen went to the 1961 College World Series with a roster that included future major league pitchers Dave Giusti and Billy Connors . Connors is maybe best known as a longtime pitching coach for the New York Yankees.
The move to the ACC has renewed interest in reviving the Syracuse program.
"I can't say now that baseball is going to happen," Syracuse deputy director of athletics Herman Frazier said. "But I can say now that it's definitely on the radar of the administration of Syracuse University. That would be the best way to put it."
Frazier played baseball in high school before enrolling at Arizona State, where he ran track. He said he would attend as many as 40 college baseball games a year and later served as a base-running instructor for the Oakland Athletics.
"So, I'm a baseball fan," he said. "You have to consider this: Where would we play? But our proposed new facility, even though it will be called a football facility, will take some pressure off the [facilities] we now have."
Pittsburgh, which faces Coastal Division football foes Virginia and Virginia Tech back-to-back over a three week span, is likely to begin the season with ex-Rutgers quarterback Tom Savage behind center.
Savage, a one-time Virginia recruiting target, passed for 2,211 yards and 14 touchdowns as a freshman at Rutgers but lost his job the next season and transferred to Arizona.
Savage wasn't a good fit for the offense installed by new Wildcats coach Rich Rodriguez in 2012 and subsequently transferred to Pittsburgh, which was in the market for a quarterback since 2013 starter Tino Sunseri completed his eligibility.
-- Both football newcomers could be going with transfers as Atlantic Division member Syracuse will welcome Drew Allen after his graduation from Oklahoma. Allen (6-foot-5, 226 pounds) played in 12 games in three seasons at Oklahoma, where he was the backup to Landry Jones .
-- If North Carolina State's quarterback isn't Pete Thomas , a transfer from Colorado State, it could be 6-4, 239-pound Brandon Mitchell , who announced this week that he is transferring to N.C. State from Arkansas.
Steven Bench , the only returning Penn State quarterback with any experience, had considered N.C. State before Mitchell reached his decision. Bench's departure increases the possibility that recruit Christian Hackenberg from Fork Union could win the job.
Appalachian State and Longwood are the two basketball programs most interested in Salem product Isaac Belton , according to Joe Gaither, who helped coach Belton at Virginia Episcopal in Lynchburg. Belton, a 6-4 wing, was the leading scorer this year for the Fork Union postgraduate team.
-- North Cross running back Evan Anderson , rated one of the top 100 prospect in Virginia by The Roanoke Times, has elected to play collegiate football at Emory & Henry. Anderson was a first-team independent schools all-state selection.
Josh Lawson, a 3-point specialist for the Raiders in basketball, has accepted an offer from Division II Wheeling (W.Va.) Jesuit. ... Sam Lincoln, a promising 6-8 post player from Marion, will play for Wytheville Community College.
Weather JournalStorm track isn't very snowy for us