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Posts Tagged ‘NCAA.’

NY Islanders make history by selecting first Chinese-born player in NHL Draft, Andong Song

Andong Song (photo courtesy NHL Public Relations, NHLmedia.com)

 

Most fans of hockey probably don’t know if there is hockey being played in China.

There must be some potential hockey players coming out of that country because the New York Islanders just selected an up-and-coming star in the recent draft.

Andong Song, a 6’0” forward who was born in Beijing, became the first Chinese-born player selected in the NHL Draft when the Islanders picked him in the sixth round (172nd overall).

“I am the first,” he said. “Hopefully what I want to do is rally people behind me. Not focus on myself but do something good for Chinese hockey.”

The 18-year-old Song, who is Beijing, China, says he patterns his game after Nicklas Lidstrom, former star defenseman of the Detroit Red Wings.

The Islanders noticed Song playing at Lawrenceville School in New Jersey. In 26 games this past season, he scored 7 goals with 26 assists and 33 points.

Song says he wants to play for an NCAA hockey team. He is expected to enroll in a prep school during the 2015-16 season.

 

Legendary North Carolina Tar Heels coach Dean Smith dies at 83

Dean Smith (2009 photo by Zeke Smith via wikipedia commons)

Dean Smith, the Hall of Fame legend who won two national championships at North Carolina along with an Olympic gold medal while coaching, has died. He was 83.

In a statement released by the university from the Smith family,  the coach died “peacefully” at his Chapel Hill home Saturday evening. He was with his wife and five children.

Smith coached some of the biggest names ever in college basketball. The list is long Michael Jordan, Larry Brown, Billy Cunningham, Hubert Davis, Matt Doherty, Phil Ford, George Karl, Charlie Scott, James Worthy, John Kuester, Jeff Lebo, Mitch Kupchak, Sam Perkins, Bob McAdoo, Kenny Smith, Rick Fox, Jerry Stackhouse, Walter Davis, Antawn Jamison, Vince Carter and Rasheed Wallace to name a few.

He sent more than 50 players to the NBA and ABA.

Smith had health issues in recent years, where he had a condition that was causing him to lose memory. He stayed out of the public’s eye since 2010. His wife, Linnea, accepted the Presidential Medal of Freedom on his behalf from President Barack Obama in November 2013.

Born Feb. 28, 1931, in Emporia, Kan., the son of public school teachers, Dean Edwards Smith graduated from the University of Kansas with a communications degree in 1953. He played for the Jayhawks teams that won the NCAA title in 1952 and finished second the next year. While at Kansas, Smith played for another legendary basketball coach in Phog Allen which the Jayhawks home arena is named after, Allen Fieldhouse.

He served as an assistant coach at Kansas to Allen and Dick Harp before joining the Air Force. He was an assistant basketball coach at the Air Force Academy, and also the baseball and golf coach for a year, before leaving in 1958 to join Frank McGuire’s staff at North Carolina. When McGuire left to coach in the NBA in the summer of 1961, the university selected Smith, 30 years old at the time, to take over the program.

Smith had an 8-9 record his first season and never had one again.

He won two championships in his career, 1982 and 1993. Other career accomplishments included: 11 regional titles which led to the Final Four; 13 ACC Tournament titles; 18 ACC regular season titles; NIT title in 1971; National Coach of the Year 4 times and ACC coach of the Year 9 times.

He is the member of several Hall of Fames: North Carolina 1981; Basketball 1983; Kansas 1996; College Basketball 2006 and the ingaural class of FIBA in 2007

Smith retired in October 1997 with a career record of 879-254, having eclipsed ‘The Baron” Adolph Rupp’s record of 876 victories during the NCAA tournament earlier that year in March.

Smith was very active in his church, politics, while speaking out on social issues such as civil rights, the death penalty, affirming gays and lesbians.

During his regime at UNC, Smith, with the insistence of his pastor started to recruit black athletes to his team. In 1967, swingman Charlie Scott became the first black athlete on scholarhip.

In politics, he supported Democrats and Liberals. He donated money to the presidential campaigns of Howard Dean, Bill Bradley, North Carolina alumnus John Edwards and Obama.

With his wife, Linnea,  Smith is also survived by daughters Sandy, Sharon, Kristen and Kelly; son Scott; and several grandchildren.

Dean Smith Center interior (2007 photo by Greenstat via wikipedia commons)

 

Clarkson University stops Minnesota’s 26-game win streak to win NCAA Women’s Hockey title

(courtesy Clarkson University)

The women’s hockey program at Clarkson University in rural Potsdam, New York has put the school in the national spotlight.

The Golden Knights have ended Minnesota’s two-year reign as NCAA hockey champions with a 5-4 win on Sunday in Hamden, Connecticut.

Clarkson, who ends the season at 31-5-5, is the first hockey team other than Minnesota, Wisconsin or Minnesota-Duluth to win the women’s national title.

#1-ranked Minnesota ends the season at 38-2-1 and had their 26-game winning streak snapped.

Shannon MacAulay scored on a breakaway down the ice in the third period with 4:16 to go for the game-winner. MacAulay also scored on a backhanded shot earlier in the contest. All told, she had two goals, two assists for Clarkson.

Members of the ECAC since 2003, Clarkson has a unique situation with Matt and Shannon Desrosiers serving as co-coaches.

Ohio State gets #2 seed in West Regional; plays Iona on Friday

Sam Thompson has been emerging lately for the Buckeyes

The Ohio State Buckeyes, who did the improbable, won their final five games of the season and then the Big Ten Tournament championship is heading to the NCAA and will only have to travel 85 miles to play.

The Buckeyes will travel to Southwest Ohio and play at the University of Dayton Arena against the Gaels of Iona.

The games in the West Region, will be Friday and Sunday.

Other matchups include, Indiana vs. the winner of the Long Island University/James Madison, NC State vs. Temple and  Notre Dame vs. Iowa State.

Aaron Craft will lead the Buckeyes on offense and defense

PHOTOS COURTESY OF JASON MOWRY PHOTOGRAPHY

NCAA considering changes in recruiting rules

(courtesy of NCAA)

The NCAA has release a package of several proposals that would change the recruiting calendar, lift restrictions on how often and how coaches can contact recruits, and allow athletes to accept more money for participating in non-scholastic events.

The National Collegiate Athletic Association will have its annual convention in the Dallas area on January 19.

All of the proposals are expected to be voted on at that time. If the proposals are passed, they could take effect on August 1, 2013.

Mark Emmert is the current president of the NCAA. It consists of 1,281 institutions, conferences and organizations.

 

Info compiled from NCAA, Radio & TV news

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