B Page -- Nov. 29, 2010



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East Division

Offensive Player of the Week:  Miami RB Thomas Merriweather

Senior running back Thomas Merriweather (Flourissant, Mo.) rushed for a career-high 182 yards on 22 carries (8.3 avg.) and one touchdown in Miami’s 23-3 victory over Temple on Tuesday night.  Merriweather had a 96 yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter to secure the victory and it tied for the second-longest run in Miami history.  His 182 yard performance was his third 100-yard rushing game of the season and fourth of his career.


Special Teams Player of the Week:  Ohio P Paul Hershey

Junior punter Paul Hershey (Freemont, Ohio) averaged 46.7 yards per punt on three kicks last Friday at Kent State in a 28-6 setback.  Hershey also had a long punt of 61 yards.

West Division

Defensive Player of the Week:  Northern Illinois DE Jake Coffman

Senior defensive end Jake Coffman (German Valley, Ill.) finished with five solo tackles, one sack, two tackles for loss and a forced fumble as he led the way for Northern Illinois 71-3 win at Eastern Michigan.  Coffman set the tone early as on the second play of Eastern Michigan’s second series, he sacked quarterback Alex Gillett for a loss of eight yards, causing a fumble which was recovered by Northern Illinois’ Sean Progar at the Eagle 22 yard line.  Two plays later, the Huskies’ scored to go ahead 13-0. 

Coffman and the Huskie defense held Eastern Michigan to 160 yards on 64 offensive plays for an average of 2.5 yards per play.  In addition, Eastern Michigan’s 11 passing yards was a season low.


Special Teams Player of the Week:  Toledo KR Eric Page

Sophomore kick returner Eric Page (Toledo, Ohio) became the first Rocket in history to return two kickoffs for touchdowns, a 99-yarder in the first quarter and a 95-yarder in the third quarter, in a 42-31 win over Central Michigan. The 99-yarder was the second-longest in Toledo history and the longest in 62 years. Page also caught twelve passes for 127 yards and added two touchdown receptions and also threw another touchdown—a 28 yard connection to quarterback Terrance Owens.

Yeomen Men's Basketball

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The Yeomen found themselves down 25, 46-21, at the break, but found a way to dig deep to make it a game in the second half. A 21-6 Yeomen run to start the session would make it just a 10-point game, 52-42, with 13:01 left on the clock. A couple of Mazi Farris’ charity tosses at the 9:14 mark cut the deficit to just eight, 62-54. Unfortunately, the Yellow Jackets would extend their cushion back out to 10 and never look back. With time not on their side, the Yeomen continued to foul, but Waynesburg was consistent enough to ice away the win. 


In the first half it appeared as if a lid was on the hoop for the Yeomen as they went over 13 minutes without a field goal. A 3-pointer by Merritt would finally snap that streak at the 4:23 mark and actually jump start mini 11-0 OC run that featured five points from Fox and another triple-hit by Merritt. 

Oberlin, which shot 50 percent (16-of-32) in the second session, connected on just 7-of-29 triggers in the first 20 minutes of play to finish at a 37.7 percent (23-of-61) clip. The Yellow Jackets were consistent throughout, hitting 26-of-54 (48.1%) shots.

The Yeomen bench bunch was outscored by its counterpart 46-9. 

Oberlin will look to get things going as it begins conference play on Wednesday night against Allegheny College. The game is part of a doubleheader with the women’s team and will tip-off at 8 p.m. 

CSU Men's Basketball

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PREVIEWING CLEVELAND STATE:  Gary Waters has the Viking Basketball program back at a level where he is comfortable as all five starters and nine lettermen return from last year's team that went 16-17 against one of the most difficult schedules in the country.  The strength of the squad is at the guards where senior Norris Cole (20.4 ppg, 5.3 rpg, 3.7 apg), a first team All-Horizon League selection last year, and juniors Trevon Harmon (12.7 ppg,  5.0 rpg) and Jeremy Montgomery (11.3 ppg, 3.7 rpg, 1.6 apg) each return to once again form the nucleus of the starting lineup this season.  Senior forward D'Aundray Brown (8.6 ppg, 5.6 rpg) is out until mid-December following preseason surgery on his right index finger, leaving the small forward spot to be manned by the sophomore duo of Charlie Woods (3.1, 2.6) and Josh McCoy (4.6, 3.1), who redshirted last season following hip surgery.  Junior Aaron Pogue (8.0, 6.1) returns as the starter at center with sophomore Tim Kamczyc (4.9, 4.9) opening the year as the starting power forward.  Junior Joe Latas (1.7, 1.5) and freshmen Luda Ndaye (1.3, 2.2) and Devon Long (3.4, 1.4) will help to provide CSU with a spark off the bench inside this year.  Injuries to Brown, freshman Sebastian Douglas (season/knee) and sophomore Anthony Wells (knee), have hurt the bench depth, especially to start the season.  CSU got Wells back into the lineup for the St. Bonaventure win.

DEFENSE:  Although aggressive defense has always been one of the core principles of a Gary Waters team, the Vikings have really taken defense to heart this season.  After seven games, CSU leads the Horizon League in scoring defense (50.7), field goal defense  (.365), threee-point defense (.237), steals (8.6) and turnovers forced (17.4).  Five straight opponents have shot .400 from the field or less and just one team has shot better than .275 from three-point in a game.

THE POLLS LIKES CSU:  Although it is very early in the season, the fast start by the Vikings have helped CSU in the various computer rankings.  One of 34 unbeaten teams in Division I, Cleveland State is ranked 22nd in the latest RPI (through Sunday) and 52nd in the most recent Sagarine ratings.  The Vikings share the national lead with seven wins this year, joining Loyola and Pittsburgh as the only 7-0 squads in the country.

WATERS GETS WIN 250. . . SERIOUSLY THIS TIME:  It only took five extra days, but the win over Akron on Wednesday gave head coach Gary Waters the 250th victory of his coaching career.  Waters originally celebrated the milestone after the Louisiana win on Dec. 19, only to find that a clerical error left him one win shy.  Undaunted, Waters came back to reach the milestone in his next outing atAkron and then tacked on another win vs. St. Bonaventure, raising his career mark to 251-197 in 15 seasons as a head coach.  Waters is 79-62 (.560) in his fifth season at Cleveland State and previously posted a 92-60 mark in five years at Kent State (1996-2001) and a 79-75 slate in five seasons at Rutgers (2001-06).

7-0:  The win over St. Bonaventure on Saturday allowed the Vikings to extend its school record for consecutive wins to start a season to seven.  Cleveland State had previously opened both the 1963-64 and 1985-86 seasons with four straight wins but had never been 5-0. . . let alone 7-0.  The 1985-86 team went on to set a school record with a 29-4 record, advancing to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Championship. The fast start was the high point of the year for the 1963-64 squad as the team went on to finish 10-9.