• Parents’ Weekend game at Air Force isn’t going anywhere

    Wed, August 31, 2011 by admin with 14 comments

    When the subject of football scheduling comes up, anyone who knows Air Force understands the Army and Navy games are permanent on the nonconference schedule. What people usually don’t include is the annual Parents’ Weekend game at Falcon Stadium against a Football Championship Subdivision team. That’s here to stay too, as long as Troy Calhoun is the coach.

    The Falcons’ template with four open nonconference dates has been to schedule Army, Navy, a FCS team and a big-name opponent on the road for exposure and money. The road game against a known opponent would be the first to go, if Air Force ever had just three nonconference dates.

    “Parents’ Weekend at the academy is a very special time, especially for the freshmen,” Calhoun said. “I look back over time, and years that we didn’t play a home game on Parents’ Weekend, I think we missed something there. I think it’s neat, in terms of the spirit that is involved on these weekends.”

  • Air Force men’s basketball schedule in full

    Wed, August 31, 2011 by admin with 1 comment

    Fri. Nov. 11 (All-Military Classic) – Air Force vs. Army, 6:30 p.m.; Citadel vs. VMI 8:30 p.m.

    Sat. Nov. 12 (All-Military Classic) – Third-place game,  6:30 p.m.; championship game  8:30 p.m.

    Fri. Nov. 18 – Western State  7 p.m.

    Wed. Nov. 23 – Colorado, 7 p.m.

    Sat. Dec. 3 – at Drake, TBA

    Wed. Dec. 7 – Wright State, 7 p.m.

    Sat. Dec. 10 – Arkansas-Pine Bluff, 7 p.m.

    Sat. Dec. 17 – Maryland-Eastern Shore, 7 p.m.

    Thurs. Dec. 22 – at Gonzaga, TBA

    Thurs. Dec. 29 (Cable Car Classic at Santa Clara, Calif.) – Wagner, 7 p.m.

    Fri. Dec. 30 (Cable Car Classic at Santa Clara, Calif.) – Santa Clara / Eastern Michigan, 7/9:15 p.m.

    Tues. Jan. 3 – Johnson & Wales, 7 p.m.

    Fri. Jan. 6 – Chicago State, 7 p.m.

    Mon. Jan. 9 – Texas-Pan American, 7 p.m.

    Sat. Jan. 14 – at Boise State, 4 p.m.

    Wed. Jan. 18 – Wyoming, 6 p.m.

    Sat. Jan. 21 – at San Diego State, 8 p.m.

    Wed. Jan. 25 – at TCU, 5:30 p.m.

    Sat. Jan. 28 – UNLV, 7 p.m.

    Tues. Jan. 31 – New Mexico, 8 p.m.

    Sat. Feb. 4 – at Colorado State, TBA

    Sat. Feb. 11 – Boise State, TBA

    Wed. Feb. 15 – at Wyoming, 6 p.m.

    Sat. Feb. 18 – San Diego State, 2 p.m.

    Wed. Feb. 22 – TCU, 6 p.m.

    Sat. Feb. 25 – at UNLV, 2 p.m.

    Wed. Feb. 29 – at New Mexico, 6 p.m.

    Sat. Mar. 3 – Colorado State, 2 p.m.

    Thurs.-Sat. Mar. 8-10 – MWC Championships at Las Vegas, TBA

  • Here’s the link for the online chat at noon today

    Wed, August 31, 2011 by admin with no comments

    Colorado College hockey writer Joe Paisley and I will be on hand to answer your questions starting at noon. Willing to offer my ill-advised opinions on just about anything – Air Force’s depth chart, the South Dakota game, the TCU game, Tim Tebow, Madden 2012, The Wire  … whatever you got.

  • Online chat set for noon Wednesday

    Tue, August 30, 2011 by admin with 9 comments

    Go to gazette.com to find a link to The Gazette’s weekly online sports chat about Air Force football and college hockey starting at 10:15 a.m. Wednesday.

    The chat featuring AFA beat writer Frank Schwab and college hockey writer Joe Paisley will start at noon Mountain time. Bring your questions about the Falcons.

  • Calhoun: “We’re lucky to be in this league”

    Tue, August 30, 2011 by admin with no comments

    Troy Calhoun’s statements on the Mountain West don’t mean that Air Force would not consider an invitation to a larger conference if asked, but they were interesting nonetheless.

    When asked about the speculation surrounding Texas A&M’s likely departure from the Big 12, and that Air Force has been speculated as a possible replacement, Calhoun made it clear the Falcons are happy members of the Mountain West.

    “We’re darn lucky to be in a league where not only professionally you’re associated respected institutions, but personally, the caliber of friendships – if that’s possible, even though you compete – there’s a quality amount of rapport and mutual respect that we’re involved in, week in and week out in all of our activities here at the academy, that’s with the Mountain West Conference,” Calhoun said. “We’re lucky to be in this league.”

    Calhoun dismissed any further conversation about possible upcoming conference realignment, talking around any speculation involving Air Force by dismissing it as rumor and innuendo.

    “It’s talk,” Calhoun said.

  • Air Force duty trumps Broncos training camp for Garland

    Tue, August 30, 2011 by admin with no comments

    Former Air Force defensive lineman Ben Garland is still on the Denver Broncos’ roster, but unlike last year, he didn’t use his leave time to participate in training camp and preseason games before going on the military/reserve list for the regular season.

    Garland said he was planning on attending camp with the Broncos, and worked “every possible pathway” to make it, but he remained at Scott Air Force Base in Illinois.

    “The Air Force needs come first and in the best interest of the Air Force it was determined that I should stay at Scott AFB and help prepare for the combined unit inspection,” Garland said in a text message. “I was more than happy to do my duty and lead my team through the inspection.”

    Garland proudly pointed out the wing received an “excellent” for the inspection.

    Garland said he is maintaining a rigorous training regiment seven days a week, and wants to make the Broncos for the 2012 season. Next year, Garland will be eligible to move the final three years of his military commitment to a six-year reserve duty, because he has a signed pro sports contract.

    Garland refused to speculate if the NFL lockout, which lasted well into summer, cost him a chance to be at training camp this year. Losing out on a training camp, especially with a new coaching staff, isn’t the best news in Garland’s quest to make the Broncos next season, but he did not complain about that.

    “I know it sets me back,” Garland said. “I also know it’s worth it. I lose football experience but I get to serve my country, build lifelong friendships and experience things that only a select few will ever get to experience.”

  • Calhoun on depth chart: “There’s absolutely nothing entrenched or static about it.”

    Mon, August 29, 2011 by admin with 2 comments

    Remember that depth chart from Air Force a few hours ago? Well, it’s probably best to forget what you saw.

    Nobody who was listed as a starter in the Falcons’ Week 1 depth chart is guaranteed to make it through the week and start on Saturday against South Dakota. Falcons coach Troy Calhoun made sure that nobody takes that depth chart too seriously.

    “There’s absolutely nothing entrenched or static about it,” Calhoun said.

    So, Parker Herrington still has a chance to be the kicker over Erik Soderberg, Chris Miller or Steffon Batts could start over Josh Hall at cornerback, and outside linebacker Alex Means will still have to hold off Jamil Cooks.

    Also, receiver Zack Kauth should be ready to play this week. He missed some time with a minor injury last week, but practiced today. His spot as second team on today’s very temporary depth chart was a pretty obvious message to him and the rest of the team that sitting out practice does not sit well with the coaching staff.

    “Durability is going to be a crucial part to our football team,” Calhoun said when asked about Kauth. “In football, you win with guys that can play and practice day in and day out. If you don’t practice day in and day out, you don’t improve. In this game there’s no standstill – you’re getting better or you’re getting worse. The only way that happens is you have to frequently practice.”

    Calhoun was asked if Mikel Hunter was listed as a first-team receiver in part because he has practiced every day.

    “I think that has helped,” Calhoun said. “Now we’ll see what happens here the next couple days, and as we go.”

  • Three freshmen listed on the football varsity Week 1 roster

    Mon, August 29, 2011 by admin with 2 comments

    A lot of freshmen will play on Saturday, if Air Force can build a big lead against South Dakota. But only three freshmen were listed on the varsity roster for Week 1. They are the surest bets to contribute right away as freshmen all season, as the elite players in the class (or, at least, elite at a position that needs depth).

    Here are the freshmen who are listed on the Week 1 varsity roster:

    S Bobby Watkins III: Watkins played well at the prep school last year, and has gotten a lot of time with the second-team defense with Kevin Jablonsky’s hand injury.

    RB Jon Lee: He might be the player I’m most interested in seeing in the opener. He has been very impressive in camp. He also is coming off a fine year for the prep school. If Air Force leads in the second half, I’d figure Lee will get some carries.

    DL Nick Fitzgerald: At 6-4, 255 pounds, Fitzgerald brings some size to the line. The Falcons want to play seven or eight linemen in a rotation, so Fitzgerald should see plenty of playing time.

  • Could Kauth miss Week 1?

    Mon, August 29, 2011 by admin with no comments

    Receiver Zack Kauth has missed practice the past few days with an undisclosed injury, and apparently he could be in danger of missing Saturday’s season opener. Or, at least, he’s in danger of not starting the season opener.

    Kauth was listed as a backup on the team’s initial depth chart behind Jonathan Warzeka. Mikel Hunter is listed as the other starting receiver. While Hunter has had a great camp, I don’t think he has surpassed a healthy Kauth. Hopefully I’ll get more details from coach Troy Calhoun later about Kauth’s availability for South Dakota.

    The other injury issue that comes up in the depth chart is that left guard Jordan Eason is listed as a starter. Eason has a knee injury that has kept him out the past couple weeks. Air Force typically doesn’t list a player as a starter if he has been ruled out, so Eason apparently has a shot to play. If that’s the case, A.J. Wallerstein would move back to right guard (he had been filling it at left guard in Eason’s absence) and Kevin Whitt would move from right guard to right tackle.

  • Hall, Means, Soderberg listed as starters on Week 1 depth chart

    Mon, August 29, 2011 by admin with 11 comments

    Because the Falcons don’t update their depth chart publicly during training camp, the Week 1 depth chart is always a bit interesting. There were a few starting spots open, and apparently, the Falcons decided to go with experience in Week 1.

    Senior cornerback Josh Hall, who began camp as a starter but has mostly worked behind Chris Miller and Steffon Batts in practice the past few weeks, was listed as a starter. If the depth chart is accurate, he’ll get the first crack at replacing Reggie Rembert. Junior Alex Means is listed ahead of sophomore Jamil Cooks on the depth chart at outside linebacker. And at kicker, senior Erik Soderberg is listed as the top kicker ahead of junior Parker Herrington. Herrington had worked ahead of Soderberg for a good portion of camp, but Soderberg has a lot more game experience. He was second-team all-Mountain West in 2009, before he struggled in 2010 and hit just 5-of-10 field goals.

    Here is the depth chart (there are a few injury-related issues that I’m going to write about in the next post):

    OFFENSE

    WR 15 Jonathan Warzeka (5-10, 180, Sr.) Lake Elsinore, CA
    85 Zack Kauth (6-4, 210, Sr.) Dayton, OH
    TE 81 Joshua Freeman (6-3, 200, Sr.) Anacortes, WA
    84 Daniel Pickett (6-4, 225, Sr.) West Palm Beach, FL

    OL 75 Jason Kons (6-4, 255, Jr.) Germantown, WI
    74 Alex Huskisson (6-6, 235, So.) Kansas City, MO

    OL 67 Jordan Eason (6-3, 255, Jr.) Smithfield, VA
    76 Evan Kauffman (6-4, 255, Jr.) Newton, KS

    OC 54 Michael Hester (6-3, 250, Sr.) Birmingham, AL
    65 Michael Husar, Jr. (6-0, 250, So.) Mt. Carmel, IL

    OG 73 A.J. Wallerstein (6-4, 285, Sr.) Canyon Country, CA
    63 Jeffrey Benson (6-0, 250, Sr.) Hoover, AL

    OL 70 Kevin Whitt (6-3, 260, Sr.) Geneva, IL
    77 Jerry Henry (6-6, 260, So.) Killeen, TX

    QB 7 Tim Jefferson, Jr. (6-0, 205, Sr.) Atlanta, GA
    11 Connor Dietz (6-0, 190, Sr.) Columbus, OH

    RB 35 Wes Cobb (5-9, 196, Jr.) Houston, TX

    25 Mike DeWitt (6-1, 220, Jr.) Austin, TX

    RB 17 Asher Clark (5-8, 190, Sr.) Lawrenceville, GA
    21 Darius Jones (5-9, 160, Jr.) Atlanta, GA

    WR 10 Mikel Hunter (5-9, 170, Jr.) Rockdale, GA
    17 Ty MacArthur (5-9, 170, So.) Newhall, CA

    DEFENSE

    DL 51 Zach Payne (6-3, 255, Sr.) Hoover, AL
    94 Cody Miller (6-2, 260, Jr.) Savannah, GA
    DL 86 Ryan Gardner (6-2, 260, Sr.) San Jose, CA
    89 Nick DeJulio (6-2, 230, Jr.) Overland Park, KS

    DL 88 Ben Kopacka (6-5, 250, Sr.) Alpharetta, GA
    95 Harry Kehs (6-4, 255, Sr.) Vienna, VA

    LB 9 Alex Means (6-5, 230, Jr.) Mankato, MN
    46 Jamil Cooks (6-4, 210, So.) Colorado Springs, CO

    LB 32 Jordan Waiwaiole (6-3, 230, Sr.) Spring Lake Park, MN
    47 Ken Lamendola (6-2, 235, Sr.) Westlake, OH

    LB 41 Brady Amack (6-0, 227, Sr.) Pleasanton, CA
    57 Austin Niklas (6-2, 230, Jr.) Fullerton, CA

    LB 44 Patrick Hennessey (6-2, 225, Sr.) Strongville, OH
    2 Stephan Atrice (6-1,200, Jr.) Fairburn, GA

    DB 5 Anthony Wright, Jr (5-10, 200, Sr.) Cleveland, OH
    23 Steffon Batts (6-0, 180, So.) Columbia, SC

    DB 31 Brian Lindsay (6-1, 220, Jr.) Chicago, IL
    4 Anthony Wooding, Jr. (6-2, 183, So.) Folkston, GA

    DB 6 Jon Davis (6-1, 210, Sr.) Cincinnati, OH
    26 Kevin Jablonsky (6-1, 195, Sr.) Yorba Linda, CA

    DB 14 Josh Hall (6-0, 185, Sr.) Atlanta, GA
    3 Chris Miller (5-8, 185, So.) Copperas Cove, TX

    SPECIALISTS

    PK 99 Erik Soderberg (6-1, 190, Sr.) Eden Prairie, MN
    18 Parker Herrington (6-1, 185, Jr.) Clearfield, PA

    P 19 David Baska (6-0, 182, So.) Overland Park, KS
    91 Andrew Heard (6-3, 210, Jr.) Colorado Springs, CO

    S 56 Colton Reid (6-0, 220, Sr.) Atlanta, GA

    PR 6 Jon Davis (6-1, 210, Sr.) Cincinnati, OH
    5 Anthony Wright, Jr. (5-10, 200, Sr.) Cleveland, OH

    KOR 15 Jonathan Warzeka (5-10, 180, Sr.) Lake Elsinore, CA
    28 Cody Getz (5-7, 170, Jr.) Buford, GA