Tuesday, January 14, 2020

From Raiders to Rockets

JANUARY 14, 2020 | written by STEVE ULRICH
your must-read briefing on what's driving the day in NCAA Division III

Our goal is to keep you - the influencers in DIII athletics - apprised of what's happening around Division III - the games, polls, news, happenings, awards, calendar of events, and much more. We hope you enjoy d3Playbook and that you'll share this with your friends, colleagues and co-workers.

  It's Tuesday. Congrats to the LSU Tigers after their 42-25 victory over Clemson for the CFP title.

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1.  From Raiders to Rockets

Mount Union head coach Vince Kehres instructs his team in the second half against St. Thomas in the NCAA Division III football championship game Friday, Dec. 18, 2015, in Salem, Va.

Mount Union head football coach Vince Kehres has accepted a position on the football staff at the University of Toledo.
He has a record of 95-6 in seven seasons on the job and has led Mount Union to a pair of national championships in 2015 and 2017, seven NCAA playoff appearances, six Ohio Athletic Conference titles and five national championship game appearances. He is a three-time OAC Coach of the Year, three-time Lee Tressel Ohio College Coach of the Year and the Columbus Dispatch Ohio College Coach of the Year.
Prior to becoming head coach, he spent 13 seasons as an assistant football coach and eight as Mount Union's defensive coordinator.
He has been a part of 12 of Mount Union's 13 national championships as either a player (2) or coach (10).
A 1998 graduate of Mount Union, he was a four-year letterwinner (1994-97) at defensive end for the Purple Raiders, a member of two National Championship teams (1996 & 1997) and earned All-OAC honors during his senior year 1997.

>> Quotable: "The timing made sense,” said Kehres. “(Head coach) Jason (Candle) and I talked about it a little bit last year but the way things were unfolding it just wasn’t the right time for either one of us. The last three or four weeks I realized this was a good time for me and for my family."

>> Of Note: Kehres and Candle both played at Mount Union and coached there under Vince's father, Larry.

2.  Jumbo Hire for Harvard

Josh Shapiro, who directed the Tufts University men's soccer team to four NCAA Championships in the last six years, will leave Tufts to become the next head coach at Harvard University.
Shapiro was hired at Tufts in 2010 to take over a team that won two games and was winless in conference play the previous season. Within two years he guided the program to an NCAA Tournament berth in 2012, the Jumbos' first since 1996. Tufts then won its first national championship in 2014 and added NCAA titles in 2016, 2018 and 2019. The program is one of just three in NCAA Division III Men's Soccer history to win four or more NCAA championships, all under Coach Shapiro.
Overall, Shapiro's Jumbo teams have compiled a 126-37-28 record for a 73.3 winning percentage and a 59-19-21 mark in the competitive NESCAC (70.2). His 2018 NCAA Championship team was undefeated (18-0-3). Tufts finished first for the NESCAC regular-season in 2014, 2017 and 2018.

3.  The Add/Drop Benefits of Football

With growing awareness about the connection between football and head injuries, youth and high school participation in the sport has declined in recent years.
But at the college level, things have gone a bit differently. New York Times reporter Bill Pennington recently wrote about what’s actually happening in college football.

Karen Given of WBUR 90.9 FM did a Q-and-A with Pennington about some surprising findings from schools that added (Anna Maria) or dropped (Northeastern) the sport.

>> Reality Check at Northeastern: "It seems to be hardly missed. Applications have more than doubled. Research funding has nearly tripled. In just about all the sort of obvious ways, Northeastern has had a great 10 years since it dropped football. Now, I don't think anybody there really says it's because we dropped football. But it's interesting that it has certainly not held them back."

>> The Big Picture at Anna Maria: The goal — and, you know, I actually wrote a story about schools like this adding football 15 years ago — the reasons then are the same as they are now: it increases the number of male applicants, just because you get 100 admitted. And so these players are paying their way — maybe not the entire cost — but I was told that the average football player's paying about $20,000 a year to attend the school. You know, do the math. I mean, 100 or 110 players times $20,000 — that's quite a bit of revenue.

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    4. Unbeaten   

    Who are the remaining teams with undefeated records?

    WBB (5)
    Albright (14-0), Bethel (13-0), Bowdoin (14-0), Hope (14-0), Tufts (14-0).

    MBB (3)
    Colby (13-0), Swarthmore (13-0), Wittenberg (13-0).

    WIH (1)
    Middlebury (8-0-2).

    5.   Men's Poll

    6.   Women's Poll

    7.   Hockey Poll

    8.  Comings and Goings

    9.  1 Baseball Thing 

    Houston Astros owner Jim Crane announcing firings yesterday. Photo: Yi-Chin Lee/Houston Chronicle via AP

    "The Red Sox may soon face significant pressure to fire manager Alex Cora after Major League Baseball issued a detailed report ... that named him the ringleader of a cheating scandal," the Boston Globe's Peter Abraham writes.
    • "The Houston Astros fired general manager Jeff Luhnow and manager A.J. Hinch shortly after they were suspended for a year by commissioner Rob Manfred for failing to stop a sign-stealing scheme Cora developed as Houston’s bench coach in 2017."

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