July 30, 2014

Former Nebraska kickers adjusting to a change in the NFL landscape for different reasons

Despite coming off one of the best years of his 12-year NFL career, former Nebraska kicker and current New York Giant, Josh Brown is playing for his NFL career as he kicks against free agent Brandon McManus, who was brought into camp as competition for the veteran.  McManus is Temple’s career leader in field goals and punting. He tried out with the Indianapolis Colts in training camp last season, but was passed over for veteran Adam Vinatieri.

“I’m not fully surprised by it,” Brown said. “It’s part of the business. I’m just a hired entity trying to keep up with the pace. I know I had a great year, one of the best years I’ve ever had. But that doesn’t mean anything now. I know what I can do. They (the Giants) have to do what they have to do.”

Last year Brown hit 88% of his kicks (23-26) and made all PATs.  He’s made 81% of his kicks that have covered the entire country from stops in Seattle, St. Louis, and Cincinnati, before landing in the Big Apple.

“I’ve missed one game-winner in 12 years,” Brown said. “I’ll take that. At the end of the day, I know I have a peace of mind that I can get the job accomplished.”

Former Husker Alex Henery is enjoying life inside the recently renovated Lincoln Financial Field, home of the Philadelphia Eagles.  A $125 million Stadium Revitalization Project was completed to help improve the fans’ experience on game day, but it also helped out the kicker from Omaha.

Two corners of the stadium were closed in, changing the wind pattern.  In the past, the wind blew directly blowing into the stadium through those corner gaps, but now the stadium has more of a swirl effect, similar to most stadiums.  It is something that Henery is used to.

“It was pretty windy today, but it wasn’t affecting the ball flight as much as I thought it would,” Henery said, whose kickoffs were consistently reaching the end zone during Monday’s practice.   Henery set a team record and rookie NFL benchmark with a 88.9% field goal percentage after being selected in the fourth round of the 2011 draft and already owns two of the four most accurate seasons in franchise history.

American Legion baseball tournament scores with late games included (updated for 7/29/14)

American Legion Senior state tournaments Class A

National Division at Grand Island’s Ryder Park

Monday’s results

Kearney 10, *-Ralston 3
Omaha Burke 7, *-Millard South 1
Grand Island 5, Creighton Prep 1

Tuesday’s games

Game 12 – Kearney vs. Creighton Prep, 4:30 p.m.
Game 13 – Omaha Burke vs. Grand Island, 7:30 p.m.

Wednesday’s games
Game 14 – Winner Game 12 vs. winner Game 13, 4:30 p.m.
Game 15 – If necessary, 7:30 p.m.

American Division at Omaha’s Brown Park

Monday’s results

Millard West 10, *-Millard North 1
Hastings 3, *-Pinnacle Bank 2, 11 inn.
Omaha Westside 4, Papillion-La Vista South, 3

Tuesday’s games

Game 12 – Millard West vs. Papillion-La Vista South, 5 p.m.
Game 13 – Hastings vs. Omaha Westside, 8 p.m.

Wednesday’s games
Game 14 – Winner Game 12 vs. winner Game 13, 5 p.m.
Game 15 – If necessary, 8 p.m.

Class B at Veteran’s Field-Blair

Monday’s results

Bennington 4, *-Platte Valley 3
Albion 15, *-Cozad 5
Hickman 11, Crete 0

Tuesday’s games

Game 12 – Bennington vs. Crete 5 p.m.
Game 13 – Albion vs. Hickman 8 p.m.

Wednesday’s games
Game 14 – Winner Game 12 vs. winner Game 13, 5 p.m.
Game 15 – If necessary

Class C at Hebron Sports and Rec Complex

Monday’s results

Sutton 14, *-Wymore 4, 6 inn.
Pender 9, *-Creighton 3
Shelton-Gibbon 15,  Hebron 5

Tuesday’s games

Game 12 – Sutton vs. Hebron, 5:30 p.m.
Game 13 – Pender vs. Shelton-Gibbon, 8 p.m.

Wednesday’s games
Game 14 – Winner Game 12 vs. winner Game 13, 5:30 p.m.
Game 15 – If necessary


High school football schedules for 2014 and 2015 released

Following are the 2014 and 2015 high school football schedules for every team in every class:


Bellevue East 2014 Schedule:
Week 1 Lincoln East
Week 2 Millard South
Week 3 @Omaha Bryan
Week 4 South Sioux City
Week 5 @Bellevue West
Week 6 Creighton Preparatory School
Week 7 Omaha Central
Week 8 @Omaha South
Week 9 @Omaha North
Bellevue East 2015 Schedule:
Week 1 @Lincoln East
Week 2 @Millard South
Week 3 Omaha Bryan
Week 4 @South Sioux City
Week 5 Bellevue West
Week 6 @Creighton Preparatory School
Week 7 @Omaha Central
Week 8 Omaha South
Week 9 Omaha North

Bellevue West 2014 Schedule:
Week 1 Omaha Westside
Week 2 @Papillion-LaVista South
Week 3 Omaha South
Week 4 @Omaha North
Week 5 Bellevue East
Week 6 @South Sioux City
Week 7 @Millard North
Week 8 Creighton Preparatory School
Week 9 @Omaha Central
Bellevue West 2015 Schedule:
Week 1 @Omaha Westside
Week 2 Papillion-LaVista South
Week 3 @Omaha South
Week 4 Omaha North
Week 5 @Bellevue East
Week 6 South Sioux City
Week 7 Millard North
Week 8 @Creighton Preparatory School
Week 9 Omaha Central

Columbus 2014 Schedule:
Week 1 North Platte
Week 2 Norfolk
Week 3 @Lincoln Northeast
Week 4 @Grand Island
Week 5 Omaha Burke
Week 6 @Omaha South
Week 7 @Omaha Westside
Week 8 Fremont
Week 9 Millard South
Columbus 2015 Schedule:
Week 1 @North Platte
Week 2 @Norfolk
Week 3 Lincoln Northeast
Week 4 Grand Island
Week 5 @Omaha Burke
Week 6 Omaha South
Week 7 Omaha Westside
Week 8 @Fremont
Week 9 @Millard South

Creighton Preparatory School 2014 Schedule:
Week 1 @Papillion-LaVista
Week 2 Omaha Westside
Week 3 Omaha Central
Week 4 @Omaha South
Week 5 Omaha North
Week 6 @Bellevue East
Week 7 South Sioux City
Week 8 @Bellevue West
Week 9 Papillion-LaVista South
Creighton Preparatory School 2015 Schedule:
Week 1 Papillion-LaVista
Week 2 @Omaha Westside
Week 3 @Omaha Central
Week 4 Omaha South
Week 5 @Omaha North
Week 6 Bellevue East
Week 7 @South Sioux City
Week 8 Bellevue West
Week 9 @Papillion-LaVista South

Fremont 2014 Schedule:
Week 1 Omaha Northwest
Week 2 @South Sioux City
Week 3 Lincoln North Star
Week 4 @Millard South
Week 5 @Lincoln Northeast
Week 6 Grand Island
Week 7 Omaha Burke
Week 8 @Columbus
Week 9 Omaha Westside
Fremont 2015 Schedule:
Week 1 @Omaha Northwest
Week 2 South Sioux City
Week 3 @Lincoln North Star
Week 4 Millard South
Week 5 Lincoln Northeast
Week 6 @Grand Island
Week 7 @Omaha Burke
Week 8 Columbus
Week 9 @Omaha Westside

Grand Island 2014 Schedule:
Week 1 Kearney
Week 2 @Lincoln Southeast
Week 3 @Omaha Burke
Week 4 Columbus
Week 5 Omaha Westside
Week 6 @Fremont
Week 7 @Millard South
Week 8 Lincoln Northeast
Week 9 @North Platte
Grand Island 2015 Schedule:
Week 1 @Kearney
Week 2 Lincoln Southeast
Week 3 Omaha Burke
Week 4 @Columbus
Week 5 @Omaha Westside
Week 6 Fremont
Week 7 Millard South
Week 8 @Lincoln Northeast
Week 9 North Platte

Kearney 2014 Schedule:
Week 1 @Grand Island
Week 2 Lincoln Southwest
Week 3 @North Platte
Week 4 Papillion-LaVista
Week 5 Lincoln Southeast
Week 6 @Lincoln East
Week 7 Omaha Bryan
Week 8 @Millard West
Week 9 Norfolk
Kearney 2015 Schedule:
Week 1 Grand Island
Week 2 @Lincoln Southwest
Week 3 North Platte
Week 4 @Papillion-LaVista
Week 5 @Lincoln Southeast
Week 6 Lincoln East
Week 7 @Omaha Bryan
Week 8 Millard West
Week 9 @Norfolk

Lincoln East 2014 Schedule:
Week 1 @Bellevue East
Week 2 Lincoln North Star
Week 3 @Millard West
Week 4 Norfolk
Week 5 @North Platte
Week 6 Kearney
Week 7 Lincoln Southeast
Week 8 @Lincoln Southwest
Week 9 @Omaha Bryan
Lincoln East 2015 Schedule:
Week 1 Bellevue East
Week 2 @Lincoln North Star
Week 3 Millard West
Week 4 @Norfolk
Week 5 North Platte
Week 6 @Kearney
Week 7 @Lincoln Southeast
Week 8 Lincoln Southwest
Week 9 Omaha Bryan

Lincoln High 2014 Schedule:
Week 1 Lincoln Northeast
Week 2 @North Platte
Week 3 Millard North
Week 4 @Papillion-LaVista South
Week 5 Papillion-LaVista
Week 6 @Lincoln Southeast
Week 7 Lincoln Southwest
Week 8 @Lincoln North Star
Week 9 @Omaha Northwest
Lincoln High 2015 Schedule:
Week 1 @Lincoln Northeast
Week 2 North Platte
Week 3 @Millard North
Week 4 Papillion-LaVista South
Week 5 @Papillion-LaVista
Week 6 Lincoln Southeast
Week 7 @Lincoln Southwest
Week 8 Lincoln North Star
Week 9 Omaha Northwest

[Read more...]

Abdullah and Gregory named to Big Ten’s “players to watch”

The Big Ten Conference announced its fourth annual football Players to Watch list, with 10 players earning preseason recognition. The preseason Players to Watch list is selected by a media panel and consists of five student-athletes each from the East Division and West Division.

Nebraska and Wisconsin lead the way with two players each on the West Division Players to Watch list. Husker running back Ameer Abdullah and defensive end Randy Gregory are joined on the list by Badger running back Melvin Gordon and right tackle Rob Havenstein. Iowa offensive lineman Brandon Scherff rounds out the division’s honorees.

Representing the East Division are Maryland wide receiver Stefon Diggs, Michigan wide receiver Devin Funchess, Michigan State defensive end Shilique Calhoun, Ohio State quarterback Braxton Miller and Penn State quarterback Christian Hackenberg. Miller was named to the Big Ten Football Players to Watch list for the third straight season.

The Players to Watch list includes the reigning two-time Big Ten Graham-George Offensive Player of the Year and Griese-Brees Quarterback of the Year in Miller. Other individual award winners from last season to claim preseason honors include the Thompson-Randle El Freshman of the Year in Hackenberg, the Kwalick-Clark Tight End of the Year in Funchess and the Smith-Brown Defensive Lineman of the Year in Calhoun.

Abdullah, Calhoun and Scherff were each named All-Americans last season. All 10 players earned all-conference honors in 2013, including first-team accolades for Abdullah, Calhoun, Funchess, Gregory, Miller and Scherff.

The complete list of Big Ten football preseason Players to Watch:

Stefon Diggs, WR, Maryland
Devin Funchess, WR, Michigan
Shilique Calhoun, DE, Michigan State
Braxton Miller, QB, Ohio State
Christian Hackenberg, QB, Penn State

Brandon Scherff, OL, Iowa
Ameer Abdullah, RB, Nebraska
Randy Gregory, DE, Nebraska
Melvin Gordon, RB, Wisconsin
Rob Havenstein, RT, Wisconsin


Storm Chasers lose but close on first place

Justin Bour had three hits, and drove in four runs to lead a 13-hit attack as New Orleans beat Omaha, 8-5 on Sunday afternoon at Zephyr Field. The Storm Chasers have lost two in a row to fall to 55-52 but gained a half-game in the standings to move to within a half-game of first place Iowa, which was swept for a second straight day in a doubleheader, in the American Conference North Division.

The Zephyrs grabbed a three-run lead in the first inning on a home run by Bour. New Orleans added on a run in the second on a double play grounder, one more in the third on a sacrifice fly by Juan Diaz, and another pair in the fifth on an error and another sac fly ball to extend the lead to 7-1.

Christian Colon started the climb back for the Chasers in the sixth with a homer, his second in 10 days against NOLA starter Andrew Heaney, to trim the margin to five.  In the seventh, Omaha closed the game to 7-4 and then in the eighth, Carlos Peguero homered to cut it to 7-5.  The Zephyrs added an insurance run in their half of the eighth inning for their 11th win in 15 games against Omaha this season.

The series and road trip wrap up Monday night with Omaha left-hander Joe Saunders taking the mound against NOLA right-hander Anthony DeSclafani.