December 14, 2012

Today's Blue & White - Dec. 14, 2012

Friday, December 14, 2012

Opening Tip!

Final exams have come and gone, and grades have been submitted.  Cars have been double-parked in front of the battalions throughout the week as members of the South Carolina Corps of Cadets begin their much-deserved furlough.  As a result, activity on campus will soon crawl to a snail’s pace as the Christmas vacation now looms for the faculty and staff.

We regret sharing the news of the passing of John Small ’70, truly one of The Citadel’s all-time great athletes.  We salute John and his many accolades later in the issue while our illustrious editor pens a perspective of his life and career.

While Small’s passing was a blow, there were many positives during the week.  Mike Sellers emerged as a consensus first team All-American, Aaron Hansen was named the league’s student-athlete of the week, Ugi Khishignyam was honored as the conference's wrestler of the week and former football assistant coach Ralph Friedgen and his wife, Gloria, graciously established the Ralph & Gloria Friedgen Scholarship with The Citadel Brigadier Foundation.

As you’ve come to expect, we have another solid issue of news and notes, so enjoy and Go Bulldogs!!!

TB&W to Break for Holidays; Will Return on Jan. 11

With the holidays on the immediate horizon, this will be the last news-oriented issue of Today’s Blue & White for a spell.  Next week we’ll enjoy our annual “Best Quotes of the Year” issue and we’ll be back with loads of news and notes for the January 11 edition.  We hope you have a wonderful and safe holiday season and our best for a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year.

 

Mike Sellers Becomes Consensus First Team All-American

Mike Sellers earned an honor received by only four players in Citadel football history on Wednesday when he became a consensus first team All-American after his selection by the Associated Press.

Previously, the junior center was chosen to All-America first teams by the American Football Coaches Association and The Sports Network. The only other players chosen to the first team by all three organizations in the same season were offensive guard Carlos Avalos in 1988, safety Lester Smith in 1992 and wide receiver Andre Roberts in 2008. 

Sellers was named to the All-Southern Conference first team and was the recipient of the Jacobs Blocking Award as the top offensive lineman in the league.

Sellers, who hails from Summerville’s Fort Dorchester High, led the team with 75 knockdown blocks and earned the highest assignment grade of all Citadel offensive linemen.  He anchored a line which enabled the Bulldogs to rank fourth in the nation with an average of 300.6 rushing yards per game while allowing only two sacks.

A year ago Sellers was the team's offensive MVP, and he has started the past 22 games at center after originally coming to The Citadel as a defensive lineman. 

Joining Sellers on the AP first team from the SoCon are Wofford fullback Eric Breitenstein, Elon wide receiver Aaron Mellette, Georgia Southern nose tackle Brent Russell, Samford defensive back Jaquiski Tartt and Appalachian State punter Sam Martin.

Aaron Hansen Earns SoCon Student-Athlete of the Week Honors

The wrestling team nabbed its second Southern Conference honor of the week on Wednesday when the league voted 133-pound wrestler Aaron Hansen as the student-athlete of the week.

Hansen, a criminal justice major carrying a 3.83 grade point average, posted his 11th win of the season on Thursday to help lead the Bulldogs over Davidson in their conference-opener at McAlister Field House.

The Summerville native holds an 11-6 record including his first career dual meet victory over Davidson's Matt Zarth last Thursday.

The Citadel returns to action on Sunday when it heads to Reno, Nev., to wrestle in the always-competitive Reno Tournament of Champions.

Ugi Khishignyam Tabbed with SoCon Wrestler of Week Honors

The wrestling team earned its second wrestler of the week award of the season when the league office named 141-pounder Ugi Khishignyam as the conference's top grappler for his performance in last Thursday's dual match against Davidson.

Ugi helped the Bulldogs to a 32-12 win over Davidson in their SoCon opener at McAlister Field House on Dec. 6.  The redshirt freshman posted a 21-6 technical fall over the Wildcats' Sejiro Littleton in his first-ever league bout.

The Mongolia native, ranked seventh nationally at 141, improved to 14-2 on the year and 2-0 in dual meets.  The award is the first of the young wrestler's career.

Hoopsters Prepare for Rugged Four-Game Road Trip

Coach Chuck Driesell’s squad took time for exams but now face a rugged four-game road trip.  The Bulldogs face the Runnin’ Bulldogs of Gardner-Webb on Saturday, and then travel to New York to battle St. Bonaventure.  On the 22nd, The Citadel will challenge Georgia Tech in their new facility and on New Year’s Day, the Cadets face the Clemson Tigers at Littlejohn Coliseum.  Be sure to catch “Voice of the Bulldogs” Danny Reed as he relays all of the action on the radio (locally on 1450AM or on the Internet at www.CitadelSports.com).

For more information, please refer to www.CitadelSports.com.

Free Admission for Kids to WCU Basketball Game on Recreation Department Jersey Night

The Citadel Department of Athletics is offering free admission to all kids 12-under who wear their recreation department basketball jersey to watch The Citadel take on Western Carolina University at 7:05 p.m. in basketball on Jan. 5 at McAlister Field House.  

The Citadel has partnered with local youth recreation departments and will offer children 12-under free admission to the game with a paid adult ticket.

The doors open at 6 p.m. on the day of the game.  For more information or questions please contact the Athletics Marketing Office at 843/953-8303 or sportmarketing@citadel.edu.

Time to "Lace 'Em Up Again" Set for Jan. 26

Calling all former basketball players!!!

The 10th Annual Alumni Basketball Game, also known as the time to “Lace ‘Em Up Again,” will be held on Saturday, January 26, immediately following the Bulldogs’ game with Elon (2:05pm tipoff).
 
This is the time to join many former Citadel basketball players (spanning several decades) in the special game that features the common bond of playing hoops for the Bulldogs in McAlister Field House.  The Alumni Game participants will be introduced at the Elon game.

And, of course, the true goal of the Alumni Game is for veteran Director of Sports Medicine Andy Clawson to simply sit and watch, and not work.

For information, please contact Associate Athletics Director Andy Solomon at andy.solomon@citadel.edu or at 843/953-6300.

Wrestlers Pin Davidson, 32-12

The wrestling team used two pins, a technical fall and five decisions en route to a 32-12 Southern Conference-opening victory over Davidson at McAlister Field House last Thursday evening.  The Citadel continued its domination on the mats against the Wildcats as the wrestling team bettered its overall record to 49-0-1 against the SoCon foe.

Aaron Hansen jump-started the Bulldogs to six consecutive wins in the second bout of the evening as the 133-pounder downed Davidson's Matt Zarth to improve his record to 11-6 on the season.

No. 7-ranked Ugi Khishignyam followed Hansen with an impressive 21-6 technical fall that was earned with riding time at the end of the final period.  Three close decisions by Jordan Dix, Matt Frisch and Vincent Bellaran at the 149, 157 and 165-pound weight classes, respectively, improved the score to a 17-6 margin.

Pins by Jack Duane (1:57) and Odie Delaney (1:25), along with a 7-2 decision by Marshall Haas, topped the scoring for the Bulldogs.

Delaney's win by fall marked his 91st career win and 48th career pin as the redshirt senior closes in on the 100-win and 50-pin marks.  Sean Markey ‘06 currently holds the school's win and fall record with 125 and 69, respectively.

For more information, please refer to www.CitadelSports.com.

Introducing Our New Kids Club: Spike’s Kidet Club

It’s time to get your kids signed up for The Citadel Athletics’ new kids club, appropriately billed as “Spike’s Kidet Club.”  With your membership you will help cheer on the Bulldogs at basketball and baseball games. You will also have the opportunity to meet and greet Citadel athletes during autograph sessions, be invited to “member only” celebration events and much more.  If you are 12-under and want to show your Bulldog spirit, join today.  Let’s have fun and cheer for our teams.

Here is what comes with your membership: Spike’s Kidet Club t-shirt, exclusive Kidet Club email updates, Kidet Club drawstring backpack, a Citadel Athletics temporary tattoo, general admission to a select basketball and baseball game, invitation to Kidet Club “member only” celebrations and Kidet Club meet-and-greet autograph session with selected cadet-student-athletes.

Sponsors for the Kidet Club are Bojangles and Domino’s Pizza.

To register, please visit http://citadelsports.com/fanZone/Bulldog_Kids_Club_Page_1.pdf, call 843/953-6812 or email spikeskidetclub@citadel.edu.

Volleyball Signs Jacksonville Standout

Volleyball coach Amir Khaledi has announced that Megan Sowell has signed a National Letter of Intent and will join the Bulldogs next fall.

A 6-1 right side hitter, Sowell comes from Episcopal High School in Jacksonville, Fla.  While there she was a two-time team captain (2011 & ‘12) and garnered team MVP honors as a senior.  Sowell also drew consecutive All-First Coast team honors in both 2011 and ‘12.

She was also named to the 2012 Under Armour High School All-American Watch List.  Among her other honors include being named as the University of Tampa team camp MVP from 2010-12.

On the club circuit, Sowell played for the Jacksonville Jaguars Volleyball Academy where her team captured the 2012 Big South national qualifier.

Chris McGuiness Chosen by Indians in MLB Rule 5 Draft

Three weeks after being named the MVP of the Arizona Fall League, former Citadel star Chris McGuiness has been chosen by the Cleveland Indians in the Rule 5 draft, held Thursday at the MLB Winter Meetings in Nashville.

McGuiness was selected out of the Texas Ranger organization and by rule will be part of Cleveland's 25-man roster when the major league season opens in April. He spent the past two-and-a-half years with the Rangers after being traded from Boston on July 31, 2010 in a deal that sent Jarrod Saltalamacchia to the Red Sox.

The first baseman was chosen by Boston in the 13th round of the June 2009 Major League Draft after batting .367 with 15 home runs and 59 RBI in his senior season at The Citadel. He also led the nation with 65 walks, was named first team All-Southern Conference and selected to the ESPN the Magazine Academic All-America team.

McGuiness batted .268 with 25 doubles, 23 home runs and 77 RBI for Double A Frisco last season and then posted an average of .283 with four homers and 27 RBI in 25 games for the Surprise Saguaros in the Arizona Fall League en route to MVP honors.

In commenting on his selection in Thursday's draft, the Bleacher Report stated that "McGuiness is an intriguing bat for the Indians. He has a good eye and discipline at the plate, his power started to show up in games this season and he can handle himself at first base."

Although not considered ready to be an everyday starter, the Indians would seem to be looking for an upgrade at first base. Veteran Casey Kotchman played in 142 games last season but struggled to a .229 batting average with 12 homers and 55 RBI.

Although designed primarily for teams to take prospects on other teams who may not be ready for the major leagues, the Rule 5 draft has nonetheless produced current all-stars Johan Santana, Jose Bautista, Dan Uggla, Shane Victorino and Jayson Werth among others.

The most prominent player ever selected in the Rule 5 draft was Pittsburgh Pirate Hall of Famer Roberto Clemente, who was taken out of the Brooklyn Dodger organization in 1954.

14th Annual Broxton Bridge Fun Shoot Set for Feb. 16

The 14th Annual Broxton Bridge Fun Shoot is a 100-shot event that will be held on Feb. 16 at Broxton Bridge Plantation in Ehrhardt with a start time of 9 am and concluding at 1 pm.  Lunch, prizes and trophies will be awarded immediately following the shoot as well as extra shooting games. 

The Fun Shoot is open to all and the cost is $100 per person.  Included are 100 shells, 100 clays and a barbeque lunch.  Advanced tickets can be bought by calling 800/437-4868, and one can go to www.broxtonbridge.com to the sporting clays tab and also register there.

Since this a NSCA Registered Shoot, trophies will be awarded using the Lewis Class System for Classes AA, A, B, C, D, Novice, Juniors, Seniors and Ladies.  Shooters need to bring their own guns.  (Juniors are considered 16-under while seniors are 60-above.

Sponsorships are available at $150, and checks should be made payable to The Citadel Brigadier Foundation, Inc., and mailed to Broxton Bridge Plantation, PO Box 97, Ehrhardt, SC 29081 along with your registration form.

Proceeds from the event go to the Jerry Varn ’53 Basketball Scholarship.  For additional information, please call 800/437-4868.

Hot Stove Banquet to Feature Hall of Famer Wade Boggs

In keeping with the custom of brining in high-profile names, Hall of Fame third baseman Wade Boggs will serve as the guest speaker for the 9th Annual Hot Stove Banquet that is hosted by the Charleston RiverDogs.

The event, which will be held on Friday, February 1 at The Crystal Ballroom at the Charleston Marriott on Lockwood Blvd., is being sponsored for the sixth consecutive year by Tom McQueeney State Farm Insurance.

The Hot Stove Banquet is an annual event that is coordinated by the Charleston RiverDogs to whet the appetite of Charleston area baseball fans.  Proceeds benefit The Citadel, College of Charleston and Charleston Southern baseball programs and the MUSC’s Storm Eye Institute, the RiverDogs’ primary charity. 

The reception begins at 6 pm with the dinner starting at 7 o’clock.  Tickets are $65 per person and include dinner and beverages.  Tables with preferred seating for eight individuals are available for $550.

Boggs spent his 18-year baseball career primarily with the Boston Red Sox (1982-92), but also played for the New York Yankees (1993-97), with whom he won his only World Series, and Tampa Bay Devil Rays (1998-99), with whom he recorded his 3,000th career hit.  His hitting in the 1980s and ‘90s made him a perennial contender for American League batting titles.  Boggs was elected to the Red Sox Hall of Fame in 2004 and the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2005.

For his illustrious career, Boggs captured five batting titles, strung together seven consecutive seasons of 200 or more hits and earned 100 walks in four straight seasons.  With his knack for getting on base, the superstitious Boggs often batted leadoff and scored at least 100 runs every season from 1983-89.  Boggs retired with a lofty .328 career batting average.

For individual tickets and additional information, please contact the RiverDogs at (843) 577-DOGS (3647).  Tickets may also be purchased online at www.riverdogs.com.

Previous Hot Stove Speakers
2011 – John Smoltz
2010 – Bobby Cox
2009 – Dale Murphy
2008 – Gaylord Perry
2007 – Jeff Francoeur
2006 – Tommy John
2005 – Jim Bouton
2004 – Bobby Richardson & John Blanchard

We Regret to Inform You

We regret to inform you of the passing of John Small ’70, who passed away on Dec. 10 in Augusta.  Enshrined in The Citadel Athletic Hall of Fame in 1977, Small was a linebacker on the 1967-69 football teams who earned All-Southern Conference honors as a sophomore and a senior.  He earned second team Associated Press All-America honors while serving as captain on the ’69 team.  Small also earned all-state honors his sophomore and senior seasons, and was named to The Sporting News’ All-America Team and United Press International’s All-America Third Team.  He participated in the 1969 East–West Shrine Bowl Game, the 1970 College All-Star Game and the 1970 Senior Bowl.  A first-round draft pick of the NFL’s Atlanta Falcons who later played for the Detroit Lions, Small was a member of The Citadel Athletic Hall of Fame’s inaugural class and a member of the South Carolina Athletic Hall of Fame.

A Salute to John Small

By Andy Solomon, Editor

Perhaps the best example I can come up with – as far as athletic, on-field talent is concerned – is the University of South Carolina’s all-everything defensive end Jadeveon Clowney.  That is probably the only way football fans of today can relate to John Small.

Like Clowney, Small dominated the line of scrimmage.  While offensive linemen consistently double-teamed him, Small played the game “large and in charge” as if he was a grown man challenged by young boys.  He was that good, and he showed it more than 40 years ago on the emerald green grass of historic Johnson Hagood Stadium and throughout the Southern Conference.

We still make reference to his domination on the field.

John Small, the living legend who battled multiple health issues for more than half his life, passed away around 3:45 p.m. Monday at age 66 in his adopted home of Augusta, Ga.  The emails and tributes started flowing later that day, and they will continue.

Many of us have memories of huge No. 66 dominating those lines of scrimmage.  Whether we were in the stands, press box or even on the sideline as his teammates, he consistently impressed us with his play on the field.

But there was clearly another side to John Small.

“John brought as much recognition to The Citadel as any athlete did in history during his athletic career as a Bulldog,” said then-Director of Athletics Les Robinson when The Citadel retired Small’s jersey No. 66 during a halftime ceremony in 2003.  “John was a great leader not only on the football field but in the barracks as a member of the Corps of Cadets.”

We rarely hear about the combination of athletic dominance and leadership in the Corps.  But that was John Small.

Stories abound about Small – who clearly was misnamed – as a member of the Corps, and the terms I recall hearing range from and included “fear” to “respect,” which is truly similar to what his reputation was on the field.

“John Small was a tremendous person both on and off the field,” said Lt Gen John Rosa.  “As a knob, I ran the scout team and watched John practice every day — what an athlete!  After his playing days, he dedicated his life to helping those in need.  Each time he returned to campus, he would stop by and share all the great things he was doing to improve the lives of others.  I will miss big No. 66.”

As a local kid who attended Citadel games, I remember when John Small played.  I recall being in awe at the first meeting I had with him shortly after I started working here in 1991.  I remember the first time he telephoned me.

I was honored to be in his presence.  And that’s what he presented, a sheer presence.

He had that flair that when he walked into a room, people would notice.  He was among the first in my world to have “charisma.”

John always talked about helping get the “blue-chip” recruit to come to The Citadel.  He never held back.  He was certainly a “giver.”  Big No. 66 loved this school so much that his pride kept bubbling over.  He was proudly tied to The Citadel.

And we, as an institution, proudly reciprocated.  John was a member of the inaugural class of The Citadel Athletic Hall of Fame in 1977, and joined legends like Cecil Johnson (Class of 1911), Richard King (Class of 1929), W.F. “Gunner” Ohlandt (Class of 1951), Paul Maguire (Class of 1960) and Coach W.L. “Matty” Matthews (Honorary).

John was also a proud member of the South Carolina Athletic Hall of Fame and rarely missed an induction ceremony that was held in Columbia, even when he was in a wheelchair.

This past September 29, The Citadel enshrined five new members into our Hall of Fame and, once again, John returned.  As I recall, during the “Parade of Bulldog Greats,” in which past inductees are introduced, walk through the audience and are greeted at the podium by Gen. Rosa, Small, who had already lost one foot to diabetes, was wheeled in and greeted warmly by the General, his old friend and teammate.  Prior to the embrace, the audience provided Small with the only standing ovation of the night.  

And he was simply returning for the event, as he has done for many years.

Our fans … they don’t forget.

We had nearly 400 people in the Courvoisie Room that night, and we inducted five new members into the Hall of Fame.  Everyone graciously applauded the new honorees and those participating in the “Parade of Bulldog Greats.”

But only one person got a standing ovation -- John Small.

We had no idea it would be the last time we’d see him.

But Big John Small will always be a large part of Citadel athletic lore.  He’ll be a huge part of our history, as we were to his.

While Mr. Clowney may rival John Small for his on-field gift, perhaps he could learn a thing or two from the life and times of John Small.

We all can.

Bulldog Business Partners

The Citadel Brigadier Foundation has once again begun the “Bulldog Business Partners” for the 2012-13 academic year and the first to sign up are:

  • Allstate - Kevin Shealy Agency
  • Charleston Crab  House
  • Delicious Management – East Bay Deli
  • Fairfield Inn by Marriott Airport
  • Hay Tire
  • Moe's Southwest Grill
  • Piggly Wiggly
  • Radiste Tech
  • Wilson & Quirk
We encourage you to please stop by and thank our supporters.  If you want more information on how your business can partner with The Citadel Brigadier Foundation, please call us at 843/953-5277.

Date for 25th Annual TCBF Auction Set

Be sure and mark down February 9 on your calendar or IPhone as that will be the date for the 25th Annual Citadel Brigadier Foundation’s Auction.   If you have items to donate or care to join the planning committee, please contact Gina Inabnett at 843/953-5277.

Keep Up With Citadel Athletics

For the latest on all athletic events and giveaways, visit the official Facebook and Twitter accounts of The Citadel Athletics at www.facebook.com/citadelbulldogs and at www.twitter.com/citadelsports.  Also, the baseball and football teams now have their own Twitter accounts at www.twitter.com/citadelbaseball and www.twitter.com/citadelfootball.  Follow them today!

He Said It:

“It made me a better man. It made me the man I am today. … It was a different experience, that’s for sure.  But I felt that going there would prepare me for life. ... It was very good discipline. It was good life lessons. … I also felt that if I worked hard enough, I would get noticed playing football, too.  And that’s what happened.  It (The Citadel) made me the man I am today.”

* Former cornerback Cortez Allen, now a starter for the NFL's Pittsburgh Steelers, on his four years at The Citadel.

“I didn’t want to sell my flesh to any school.  The Citadel offered me four years of academics.” 

* Former Citadel All-American John Small, who passed away Monday.

Upcoming Birthdays

Dec. 15            Bob Winch                  Soccer
Dec. 17            Mike Capaccio            Administration
Dec. 27            Mike Hoffman             Administration

Upcoming Events

Feb. 1              9th Annual Hot Stove Banquet Featuring Wade Boggs @Marriott
Feb. 9              25th Annual TCBF Auction @McAlister Field House
Feb. 10            Baseball’s “Meet the Bulldogs Day” @Riley Park

Have a Friend Who Might Be Interested?

Today’s Blue & White is the sister publication of the The Blue & White, the official publication of The Citadel Brigadier Foundation that is printed monthly.  In order to receive the printed version, one has to be a member of TCBF.  However, we’ve opened Today’s Blue & White to anyone and everyone who has a computer and who is interested in activities of TCBF and, of course, The Citadel’s Department of Athletics.  Today’s Blue & White is free.  All one has to do is sign up is to click on this link:  http://www.citadelsports.com/list-signup

Today’s Blue & White is the official electronic publication of The Citadel Brigadier Foundation, Inc. with its office located at The Citadel, McAlister Field House, 171 Moultrie Street, Charleston, SC  29409 (office 843/953-5277).

Publishers........................Jerry Baker & Larry Leckonby

Editor...............................Andy Solomon

Layout/Distribution...........Brian Gargone

View: Mobile | Desktop