Report: VCU joining Atlantic 10 in 2013


Report: VCU joining Atlantic 10 in 2013

VCU is moving on.The Richmond program will leave the Colonial Athletic Conference and join the Atlantic 10 in 2013, according to CBSSports. If official, the Rams would join Butler as a new conference member. Thetwo schools played in a combined three Final Four appearances in the past three seasons. The additions would also offset the loss of Temple to the Big East and Charlotte to Conference USA while boosting the conference's status to the king of the so-called mid-majors.The VCU news comes days after George Mason announced last week that after kicking some Atlantic 10 tires, it was staying put in the CAA. Perhaps, according to the CBSSports report,the Patriots were simply not invited."On Friday, George Mason, which along with VCU and Butler had discussions with the Atlantic 10, announced it was staying in the CAA. However, sources told at the present time the Atlantic 10 was looking to add only one more school and VCU got the nod over Mason."Though VCU has managed to land a spot in recentNCAA tournaments as a member of the CAA, the league is not always a lock for an at-large bid. CBSSports notes that since 2000, the CAA has received only four at-large NCAA bids. This season the Rams, winners of theCAATournament and thus the automatic bid,were the only CAA school in the field of 68. Meanwhile, the Atlantic 10 has received multiple bids in five consecutive seasons. Financially, that adds up."Since 2006 even with George Mason and VCU reaching two Final Fours the CAA only accrued 24 NCAA tournament units (awarded for every round advanced in the NCAA), compared to 36 for the Atlantic 10. Each unit is worth about 250,000."If the reports prove accurate, it would only be the latest, though most significant blow to the CAA, which has already lost Georgia State to the Sun Belt this offseason. Reports suggest Old Dominion could be next.The Norfolk schoolis considering a move to Conference USA with a decision expected later this summer.From the George Mason perspective, the glass half-full argument is without VCU (and perhaps ODU), its path to that automatic bid becomes easier, perhaps dramatically so. Of course, without one or both of those programs, the CAA loses much of its appeal - and RPI status. Without those programs, the Patriots lose two of their main rivals. While VCU starts checking out its new neighborhood, George Mason might need to reassess its current location. Maybe that involves helping the CAA find new blood or finding its own landing spot, though the BCS conferences are out and anything scenario outside the Atlantic 10 seems like a downgrade. In other words, the Patriotsshould make sure their LinkedIn and Evite accounts are active.

Jerod Evans sizzles as No. 25 Hokies earn road win vs. Pittsburgh


Jerod Evans sizzles as No. 25 Hokies earn road win vs. Pittsburgh

PITTSBURGH -- One of the nation's worst secondaries kept daring Virginia Tech quarterback Jerod Evans to throw.

So he did. Over. And over. And over.

The junior shook off a right ankle injury to throw for a career-high 406 yards and two touchdowns to lead the 25th-ranked Hokies to a 39-36 victory over Pittsburgh on Thursday night.

Joey Slye tied the school and Atlantic Coach Conference records by making six field goals to help the Hokies (6-2, 4-1) beat the Panthers (5-3, 2-2) on the road for the first time in 17 years.

Pitt came in with the nation's 120th-ranked pass defense yet played bump-and-run for most of the game, hoping its defensive backs could win more than they lost.

Didn't happen.

Instead, three Tech wide receivers topped 100 yards in the same game for the first time in school history. Isaiah Ford's 10 receptions included his school-record 23rd receiving touchdown. Bucky Hodges caught six passes for 145 yards and a score and Cam Phillips added 109 yards on a night the Hokies piled up 556 total yards.

"It's a great feeling when you can do what you love doing and that's throw the ball up and down the field against a pretty good defense," Evans said. "One-on-one coverage. You can't ask for anything better than one-on-one coverage."

Pitt coach Narduzzi built his reputation as defensive coordinator at Michigan State by requiring his secondary to play physical. He's intent on doing the same at Pitt, even as the weeks pass and improvement only comes in sporadic bursts. Facing the Hokies, it was no different.

"We had guys in position to make plays," Narduzzi said. "We didn't make them. . There's not a whole lot of different ways to do it."

Evans left briefly in the third quarter after getting his right leg rolled up on but returned to lead a fourth-quarter surge that included Slye's sixth field goal. Slye joked it got a little bit boring knocking in chip shot after chip shot, though he's hardly complaining after the Hokies won at Heinz Field for the first time in five tries and assured themselves of a bowl berth for a 24th straight year, the longest active streak in the nation.

It's a notable streak, but bigger goals lie ahead. The Hokies will end the weekend no worse than tied in the loss column with North Carolina atop the Coastal. Virginia Tech owns the tiebreaker, having beaten the Tar Heels decisively this month

Maryland's Mark Turgeon signs contract extension through 2022-23 season

Maryland's Mark Turgeon signs contract extension through 2022-23 season

Starting the beginning of his sixth season with Maryland men’s basketball, head coach Mark Turgeon signed a four-year contract extension, Maryland announced Thursday.

The extension will take him through the 2022-23 season.

The Terrapins enter the 2016-17 season ranked No. 21 in the Preseason USA Today Coaches Poll and are coming off their second consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance, which included their first Sweet 16 game since 2003.

In his five completed seasons with Maryland, Turgeon has earned a 114-59 record — the most wins for a head coach after taking over the program.

"Mark has built a program that we are incredibly proud of as he continues to lead the great tradition that is Maryland Basketball," Director of Athletics Kevin Anderson said in a statement. "I am proud of the academic and athletic success that the men's basketball team has achieved under Mark's leadership the past five years.”

“During his successful tenure in College Park, Mark has worked tirelessly to establish a nationally-recognized program that will annually compete for championships,” Anderson added.

In the team’s first two years with the Big Ten, Maryland boasts a 26-10 conference record and finished third last season (12-6) to Indiana and Michigan State, respectively.

MORE MARYLAND HOOPS: Melo Trimble talks season expectations and his return to the Terps