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Canisius signs seven

---Canisius had to replace five seniors from last year's team and landed a a seven-man recruiting class that is its biggest under coach Tom Parrotta.

Junior college transfer Harold Washington, Central Florida transfer Isaac Sosa and Kevin Bleeker from Holland join center Freddy Asprilla, a transfer from Kansas State, forward Jose Agosto from Gatlinburg-Pittman, Tenn., guard Franklin Milian, from Our Savior New American on Long Island and forward Josiah Heath from Irondequoit. Sosa and Asprilla will have to sit out the 2011-12 season because of transfer rules.

---Rodney McKissic

(www.twitter.com/rodneyjmckissic)

 

Hobbs fired at GW

---Karl Hobbs has been fired after 10 seasons as coach of the George Washington basketball team. The school hired new athletic director Patrick Nero last week. He told Hobbs, whose teams left school records in overall and conference wins, about the decision early Monday afternoon. The highlight of Hobbs' time at George Washington was a 27-3 record in the 2005-06 season, during which his team went 16-0 in the A-10 conference. The season remains the winningest in the school's history and earned Hobbs conference Coach of the Year honors.

---Rodney McKissic

(www.twitter.com/rodneyjmckissic)

Kevin Bleeker video

---Here's some video on Canisius recruit Kevin Bleeker who committed to the Golden Griffins on Sunday.

---Rodney McKissic

(www.twitter.com/rodneyjmckissic)

Ohio State penalties could be severe

---Ohio State is potentially facing the most severe NCAA penalties to its storied football program as punishment for coach Jim Tressel's failure to disclose his knowledge of violations and use of ineligible players during this past season.

In a "notice of allegations" given to Ohio State President E. Gordon Gee, the NCAA accused Tressel of dishonesty for hiding violations by seven current and former players who sold awards and equipment to a tattoo-parlor owner.

---Rodney McKissic

(www.twitter.com/rodneyjmckissic)

Fiesta officials meet with BCS

---The Fiesta Bowl made a strong case to stay in college football's prestigious Bowl Championship Series, hoping that promises to clean up self-disclosed financial mismanagement, potentially illegal conduct and lax board oversight will be enough to keep it in play.

---Gridiron 365 has UB at No. 113.

---A new NCAA restriction will force AAU tournaments to look for new tournament host sites.

---Rodney McKissic

(www.twitter.com/rodneyjmckissic)

Copeland shines at safety

---While UB’s front seven is pretty much set, some issues in the secondary have to be addressed except for perhaps strong safety where senior Josh Copeland has stood out.

Copeland tied senior defensive tackle Richie Smith for game-high honors in tackles with six during Saturday’s Blue-White Scrimmage and the Buffalo Bills Fieldhouse.

The defensive staff contemplated moving Copeland to safety prior to the start of spring practice but just three practices into workout they saw a need to strengthen the secondary. The staff made a similar move last year when they moved Domonic Cook from corner to safety.

“(Copeland) was reminding us of Davonte Shannon and in some ways maybe even better because he knows how to tackle and get his head in there because he was a linebacker,’’ said Ernest Jones, who along with Mike Dietzel coaches the Bulls secondary. “He was a natural fit.’’

For Copeland, who was recruited to play safety, it’s all about getting on the field.

“I like safety, but I like coming down, being physical, hitting and playing linebacker,’’ Copeland said. “Wherever they need me, that’s where I’ll play. We’ve had a lot of challenges the last couple of years with the changes and playing both linebacker and safety. I’ve been waiting patiently and I’ve been preparing myself well so I feel like I’m ready.’’

The rest of the secondary has to be developed. Sophomore Romel Dismuke and redshirt freshman Cortney Lester, who converted from wide receiver, started at corner while junior Isaac Baugh started a free safety with Copeland at strong.

The offense pounced on their inexperience as junior Jerry Davis and sophomore Alex Zordich combined to throw for 322 yards and three touchdowns. Four completions covered more than 40 yards. Senior Marcus Rivers caught nine passes for 198 yards and three TDs.

“When you lose guys like Domonic Cook, Josh Thomas and Sherrod Lott there’s going to be some growing pains,’’ Jones said. “”We do have some athletic guys who can play, it’s going to come down to fundamentals. The fundamentals are what we have to work on.’’

Overall the defense had a pair of interceptions, one by junior linebacker Jaleel Verser, which he returned 17 yards and sophomore safety Okoye Houston. Sophomore Khalil Mack had four solo tackles, while Joe Petit added five tackles, as did linebacker Scott Pettigrew who was also credited with a pass breakup. Redshirt freshman defensive end Kristjan Sokoli added a tackle for loss and a pass breakup.

Junior linebacker Dalonte Wallace, junior tackle Wyatt Cahill and sophomore end Colby Way each recorded a sack.

---UB's running game was led by Jeffvon Gill who had 35 yards on 10 carries and redshirt freshman James Potts, who had 27 yards on just five carries (5.4 per carry), while sophomore Branden Oliver added a three-yard touchdown run in the second half.

--Rodney McKissic

(www.twitter.com/rodneyjmckissic)

CollegeInsider.com tabs McCrea

---UB's Javon McCrea was named one of 21 players on the CollegeInsider.com Mid-Major Freshmen All-America team. McCrea, who earlier was named the MAC Freshman of the Year, finished third on the Bulls in scoring (11.8) and led the team with 6.5 rebounds a game. He was also second on the team in both blocks (58) and steals (43).

---Rodney McKissic

(www.twitter.com/rodneyjmckissic)

Nelson honored by CollegeInsider.com

---Niagara senior Anthony Nelson was named to the CollegeInsider.com Mid-Major Defensive All-America Team. Nelson was one of 21 players named to the team and the only member from the MAAC. Nelson joins former backcourt teammate Tyrone Lewis as the only Purple Eagles to be named to the Mid-Major Defensive All-America team.

Nelson was named MAAC Defensive Player of the Year, earned All-MAAC Second Team honors and was selected to the NABC All-District Second Team during his record-setting senior campaign.

Nelson led the nation in steals with 3.4 per game en route to setting the school’s and conference’s single-season record. Nelson’s 230 career steals rank second in program history behind Lewis’s 250 and his career-high of eight steals on Jan. 9 are tied for second most in program history and tied for sixth most in a single game this season.

Nelson, who also recorded the school's only triple-double, finished his career as the only player in program and conference history with at least 1,000 points, 500 rebounds, 600 assists and 200 steals in his career.

---Rodney McKissic

(www.twitter.com/rodneyjmckissic)

Lanier returns to Texas

Lanier ---Buffalo native Rob Lanier is leaving his position at Florida and returning to Texas where he was an assistant from 1999-01. Lanier replaces Rodney Terry, who left coach Rick Barnes’ staff last week to become the coach at Fresno State. Lanier left Texas to become the coach at Siena, where he spent four seasons before getting fired in 2005. Lanier was then an assistant at Virginia for two seasons before spending the next four at Florida.

---Rodney McKissic

(www.twitter.com/rodneyjmckissic)

Like school on Sunday, Jimmer has no class

---Jimmer Fredette has become a national celebrity over the past few months and is everyone's All-American. He's become so popular, in fact, that he was asked to stop attending classes at BYU because it was such a distraction.

"It was getting too disruptive," said Al Fredette, Jimmer's father, who explained that Jimmer's fame in Provo, Utah, has led to constant requests for autographs and photographs. "He can't go anywhere in Provo without being recognized."

He now does all his schoolwork online.

---Rodney McKissic

(www.twitter.com/rodneyjmckissic)

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About Campus Watch

Bob Dicesare

Bob DiCesare

Western New York native Bob DiCesare covers UB football, Big 4 basketball and writes an occasional column. He still holds a grudge against Chris Ford who, he's convinced, cost St. Bonaventure the 1970 NCAA basketball championship.

@TBNDicesare | bdicesare@buffnews.com


Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz, a native of Lockport, has covered colleges for The Buffalo News since 1999. She has a bachelor’s degree in journalism/mass communication from St. Bonaventure University and a master’s degree in humanities from the University at Buffalo. An endurance athlete, she has completed several triathlons, half marathons and marathons.

@amymoritz | amoritz@buffnews.com

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