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Posts Tagged ‘Big 10.’

Illinois hires Green Bay’s Bollant to improve women’s program

Matt Bollant (courtesy of Wisconsin Green Bay athletics)

Illinois, taking a cue from Big 10 rival Indiana, has brought in a new basketball coach to revive its women’s program.

Former coach Jolette Law was fired after a five season record of 69-93.

Replacing her is Wisconsin Green Bay’s Matt Bollant.

The 41-year-old Bollant was 141-19 in five seasons with the Phoenix who are members of the Horizon League and his teams made the NCAA Tournament four times.

Bollant also was the head coach at Bryan College in Dayton, Tennessee, has an overall career record of 268-55.

With Green Bay, he was named Horizon League Coach of the Year three times and Kay Yow National Coach of the Year in 2011.

Since the 2007-2008 season, the Phoenix have dominated the Mid-major Horizon League:

2007- 2008, 1st 26-6, 17-1, WNIT

2008-2009,  1st 29-4, 18-0   NCAA

2009-2010,  1st 28-5, 15-3   NCAA

2010-2011,  1st 34-2, 18-0   NCAA Sweet 16

2011-2012,  1st 31-2,17-1     NCAA Sweet 16


Info compiled from Wisconsin Green Bay & Illinois athletics news

SPORTS SPOTLIGHT: Noah Key, Columbus Bishop Hartley High School, running back/defensive back


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I had a chance last week to go watch football practice at Bishop Hartley High School in Columbus.  I had chance to watch one of the area’s top football teams as well as one of top programs in the state. There are several top-notch players on the Hawks team. On this day, I was going to interview Noah Key, one of the leaders on the team. I had thought back a few years in the past and on the same field and at the same school, I had interviewed his dad, David Key in the 1980′s.

His dad, played at the University of Michigan and in the NFL. So I’m sure that name is familiar to most football fans.


Hartley Hawks RB/DB Noah Key (

Noah is just as talented as his dad and I noticed one thing, they both have worn the uniform number 44 for the Hartley Hawks.

I’m sure that Noah probably gets most of the interview requests for the Bishop Hartley football team, but he gladly talked about his other teammates and made sure they’re talents are known as well.

At quarterback, there’s Austin Underwood, a 6’3, 180 pound senior who is a 3-year starter. Underwood completed 65 percent of his passes a year ago.

Linebacker Jarrod Zang, a junior, was all-league and district as a sophomore and freshman.

Bishop Hartley has some of the best facilities in the area. (

Jack Ryan Field at Bishop Hartley (

The Hawks, who play in the Central Catholic League, Gold Division, returned three first-team All-Central District performers in Evan Jackson, a defensive and offensive lineman, Joey Moore, an offensive lineman and Noah Key.

Their second-team All-Central District members include linebacker Jawaun Woodley, a sophomore who led the team in tackles as a freshman. Kicker Brent Wahle is the other honoree.

Noah Key is a leader in the defensive backfield along with Omar Lane. That area of the team has two new starters, but is progressing well according to Key. They’re probably doing well, because David Key is the Hartley secondary coach and the players couldn’t ask for a better teacher.

Hartley Hawks working towards the playoffs (

Hartley working on a special teams drill (

The Hartley Hawks, who play in Division 4, Region 15 in the state, have been on a mission this year. The mission is called “A Playoff Run.”  In 2009, despite finishing a solid 7-3, they fell short of the playoffs which means a great deal  to schools like Bishop Hartley who build teams for that purpose.

With 14 starters returning in 2010, 4 of the top 5 offensive lineman back, they want the state playoffs and a championship.

One of the most exciting players in the Central Ohio area, Noah Key is 6’0, 180 and very fast. In 2009, he rushed for 1,241 yards and 20 touchdowns. He is a threat in the return game as well, running back two kickoffs for a touchdown last season.

His dad, David ran for a total of 4,109 yards in his career at Hartley. I asked Noah can he break it and he said he would love to do it but will probably fall short. He wants wins and championships however.

This season, the Hawks are off and flying again at 4-1. The only blemish was an overtime loss at Elyria Catholic in week 4. They play eight teams who had  7 or more wins in 2009.

Here’s their results as of week 5.

Week 1 August 27 Amanda-Clearcreek. Hawks won 48-10 as Noah Key and Omar Lane scored four 1st half touchdowns. Key had TD runs of 75 and 35 yard scoring runs. Lane had 66 yards and two touchdowns.

Week 2 September 3 At Columbus Academy. This has developed into a nice rivalry among two of Columbus’ top private schools. The Hawks go to 2-0 with a 42-34 win. Hartley had 405 yards of offense. Noah Key had 318 yards on 24 carries and scored 4 touchdowns of (47, 6,80 and 4 yards).

Week 3 September 10 Bexley. This game is between two rivals located in the same area. The suburb of Bexley, starts about 3 blocks from the Hartley campus. Hartley wins the game 54-7 and goes to 3-0. The offensive unit put up 538 rushing yards on 59 carries. Jarrod Zang  ran for 110 yards and 1 touchdown and Noah Key ran for 203 yards and 4 touchdowns.

Week 4 September 17, At Elyria Catholic. The Hartley football team traveled to Lorain County to play in the Cleveland area. Eventhough they lost, 34-28 in overtime to fall to 3-1, the team proved once again that Columbus schools can play with the Cleveland area football teams.

Noah Key was held to 70 yards and 2 touchdowns if you can call that holding him down. But Jarrod Zang stepped up and rushed for 159 yards on 13 carries.

The only negatives in the game for Bishop Hartley is that they missed a 41-yard field goal in the 4th quarter and lost a fumble in overtime.

Week 5 September 24 Hartley hosted Villa Angela-St. Joseph out of Cleveland. If that school sounds familiar, it should. Former Ohio State and Indiana Pacers star Clark Kellogg graduated from there when it was just Cleveland St. Joseph High School.

The Hawks got back on the winning side of things with a 37-8 score. They are 4-1.

The rest of the schedule is:

Week 6 October 1 Columbus Grove.

Week7 October 9 Dayton Thurgood Marshall, which is the old Colonel White High School and the school was rebuilt on the grounds of the old Dayton Nettie Lee Roth High School.

Week 8 October 15 At Ironton.

Week 9 At Spencerville.

Week 10 Columbus Bishop Ready.

According to several recruiting services, Noah Key has visited Ohio State and Michigan and has received interest from some Mid-American Conference and lower tier Big 10 schools.

Wherever Noah Key ends up, that school is going to get a fine athlete, student and citizen from a solid family!

Special thanks goes out to Bishop Hartley head football coach Brad Birchfield for allowing us to cover practice and take photos. Also to Noah Key for taking time after a hard fought practice to grant us an interview. Good Luck to the Hawks!

Conference shakeups already! Colorado to Pacific 10

compiled from staff, wire, University of Colorado and Pacific 10 Conference news

As expected Thursday, the first school that was going to leave the Big 12 was Colorado and they’ve chosen the Pac-10.

Colorado will become the 11th member of the Pacific 10 Conference.

The Buffaloes might not be the only team bolting from the Big 12. Nebraska could become a part of the Big 10 as soon as this weekend and there is speculation that Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, Oklahoma and Oklahoma State may also jump to the Pac-10 to possibly form a 16-team super conference.

Mike Bohn Colorado AD (courtesy of Colorado Athletics)

If all the expected shakeup continues, the Big 12 might just be history. That would leave Missouri, Baylor, Iowa State, Kansas and Kansas State out in the middle of the desert with nowhere to go. The Big 12 has been a highly successful conference that was formed in 1994 when the Big Eight invited the four Texas schools from the Southwest Conference.

The benefactor of all of this could be the Mountain West Conference, which could swoop up those ‘leftover’ schools and former a superconference of its own. There have been rumblings that Boise State is going to join the Mountain West.