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The Roanoke Times | File 2012
Ferrum football coach Dave Harper said he held separate meetings with his staff and players this week and told them his expectations for the next six weeks.
Thursday, October 3, 2013
Being a member of the Ferrum football squad this week has not been an activity for the faint-hearted.
At 0-4, the Panthers already have lost more games than they did in either of Dave Harper’s first two seasons as head coach.
“I’m a hateful loser; I can’t stand it,” said Harper, in his third season as the head coach at Ferrum, where he was a two-time All-America linebacker in the 1980s. “It’s like when I used to play my son in basketball.
“We played all the time, but then he started beating me and I got so mad, I had to quit playing him.”
Harper doesn’t have that option in the USA South Conference, beginning with a 2 p.m. visit Saturday from Greensboro College on the occasion of Ferrum’s centennial homecoming.
Harper, whose first two teams finished 7-3, said he held separate meetings with his staff and players this week and told them his expectations for the next six weeks.
The Panthers have given up at least 43 points in every game and were 56-35 losers Saturday to USA South newcomer Huntingdon College in Montgomery, Ala.
“They’re a solid team; I don’t think they’re the best team we’ve played,” Harper said. “I think our kids, offensively, lost focus of what their job was.”
Neither team scored in the fourth quarter.
“The defense came up with some stops and turnovers and the offense did not respond,” Harper said. “They were more concerned with what was [happening] on the field than what they had to do.”
In other words, no one escaped Harper’s wrath, even quarterback Tim Reynolds, who passed for a school-record 292 yards.
“I’m going to be who I am,” Harper said. “I wear my emotions on my sleeve. I always have. That’s good and bad, but I’m not one of the coaches that’s going to sit there and play head-games with our players.
“This is what it is. This is where we’re at. Now, how do we get out of it? Our talent is solid enough not to be in this position.”
Stephen Barnette, a junior from Salem High School, had seven catches for 132 yards Saturday for Richmond in a 28-21 loss to Maine. It was the fifth career 100-yard receiving day for Barnette, who has 119 receptions in his Spiders’ career.
Barnette is one of three ex-Spartans who start for Richmond. His twin brother, Reggie, starts at safety. Seth Fisher, another Salem High grad, starts at fullback and has three touchdown receptions in two seasons. Fisher is Salem’s all-time sacks leader.
Longwood University junior Blake Carter from Bassett High School tied for seventh out of 64 golfers in the Joe Agee Invitational at the Williamsburg Country Club. Carter, whose 54-hole total of 214 was his career best, helped the Lancers finish sixth in an 11-team field.
Reigning NBA champion Miami is the seventh NBA team for one-time Virginia basketball standout Roger Mason, 33. Mason also spent one season in Greece and two years in Israel prior to the first of two stints with the Washington Wizards.
Mason has played in 493 regular-season NBA games, which puts him fourth among UVa alumni behind Olden Polynice (1,058), Bryant Stith (586) and Wally Walker 565. Ex-Cavalier Ralph Sampson, who is in the Naismith Hall of Fame, played in 441.
It appears that Virginia Tech is in the final two for men’s basketball prospect Jalen Hudson, a 6-5 wing from St. Vincent-St. Mary High School in Akron, Ohio, the alma mater of four-time NBA most valuable player LeBron James. Hudson is expected to announce his choice between Tech and Arkansas on Friday.
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