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New red-shirt rule will benefit Blue Hens, other college football teams

Kevin Tresolini, Delaware News Journal 
June 20, 2018

One snap will no longer constitute a full season for a college football player and University of Delaware football coach Danny Rocco is delighted.

Beginning this season, Division I players may appear in a maximum of four football games during any year, but it will not count against their four years of eligibility.

Such seasons, known as “red-shirt years” from the color of the jerseys once worn by such athletes, previously required a player to sit out all games.

Until last week, players had five years in which they could play four football seasons. Now, they can play four full seasons, plus four games of another, thanks to an NCAA ruling.

Rocco is on the board of the American Football Coaches Association, which had been pushing for such a change for more than 15 years.

“As coaches we all recognize this as a win-win,” said Rocco, whose Blue Hens commence preseason camp Aug. 1 for the Aug. 30 opener against visiting Rhode Island. “It is definitely best for the student-athlete on a number of different levels.”

That includes academically, Rocco believes, because players will now have a better chance to complete additional under-graduate or post-graduate degree work because they’re more likely to be around for five fall semesters.

On the football field, players — especially freshmen — will have the opportunity to play in situations in which they didn’t before.

Typically, freshmen practice regularly and are part of the team, adjusting to the higher level of college football while they learn and grow physically, but many don’t appear in games. They would then have four more years to play.

Now those freshmen can appear in four games, providing valuable experience for them and precious depth for the football team, especially late in the season when injuries tend to mount and attrition takes a toll.

But players don’t always red-shirt their freshman years. Sometimes, they do so later, especially when an injury is involved.

“No one wants to sit out a year,” Rocco said. “Sitting out is very difficult. It’s such a shock to be the high school star and then not even be able to enter a game.”

All long-time coaches have dealt with situations when a difficult decision had to be made about whether to continue red-shirting a player needed in an emergency situation. 

For Rocco, it happened in his final season as Richmond coach in 2016 when standout quarterback Kyle Lauletta tore his ACL in the final regular-season game against William & Mary and wouldn’t be available for the FCS playoffs. Sophomore Kevin Johnson, who was being red-shirted that year and hadn’t played a snap, then came on to spark the Spiders to a pair of victories before an NCAA quarterfinal loss at Eastern Washington.

Rocco had said after the William & Mary game he wouldn’t play Johnson. But the quarterback came to Rocco the next day and said “Hey coach, I want to play this week,” Rocco said. “This is too good of an opportunity for me not to take advantage of it.”

After more discussion, thought and time, the decision was made to play Johnson, which turned out to benefit the Spiders.

“If I’m gonna play a student-athlete, I want his play count to be 100 plays or more,” Rocco said of his typical approach to red-shirting players.

One example of how the new rule would have greatly benefitted a Delaware player came during the 2002 season, K.C. Keeler’s first as Blue Hens football coach. That year, Andy Hall played quarterback during the 12-game season’s first 11 games but was injured and unavailable for the season finale against Villanova.

Mike Connor, who had started the final four games as a true freshman the year before and was in the process of being red-shirted, was called on to start the Villanova game after not taking a game snap all year. It cost Connor the entire year of eligibility. He transferred after that season to Lehigh, having two years of eligibility left but never threw a pass in a game there.

Under the new rule, either one of those seasons could have been considered a red-shirt year and Connor would have had three years left to play after 2002.

“This change promotes not only fairness for college athletes, but also their health and well-being,” Division I Council chairman Blake James, the athletic director at Miami (Fla.), said in the NCAA’s announcement.

“Red-shirt football student-athletes are more likely to remain engaged with the team, and starters will be less likely to feel pressure to play through injuries. Coaches will appreciate the additional flexibility and ability to give younger players an opportunity to participate in limited competition.”

It could be especially valuable at the Football Championship Subdivision level, where teams award a maximum of 63 scholarships and then have a 24-team playoff, extending the season and testing teams’ reserves. At the Football Bowl Subdivision level, schools may dole out 85 scholarships and have fewer postseason games.

Todd Berry, executive director of the American Football Coaches Association, had been mulling such a change to the red-shirt rule since he was coach at FCS Illinois State in 1999 and dwindling depth forced him to use a defensive lineman who hadn’t played all season in a playoff game.

The rule presently applies only to football, though the NCAA, in last week’s announcement, said the Division I Student-Athlete Experience Committee will consider how a similar red-shirt program could be adapted to other sports.

“It creates more viable scenarios where you would be willing to and even strategizing to play some of your younger players,” Rocco said. “That, in and of itself, creates relief and depth.’’

Of the 75 players to see action last season for the 7-4 Blue Hens, 15 played in four games or less. Under the new rules, such a season could count as a red-shirt year, but previous rules only allowed that if an injury was involved. Last year, senior linebacker Charles Bell suffered a season-ending back injury in the fourth game against James Madison but he was permitted to return this season.

Rocco said a good example of a player who might have benefitted last year from the new rule, which is not retroactive, is defensive lineman Carter Lynch. As a true freshman, he didn’t appear in any games and was red-shirted but is now among Delaware’s key players in that position area.

If this rule was in place, he could have played in four games in 2017, gaining some experience while preserving the year of eligibility.

“I told our incoming freshmen, ‘You all have a chance to play,’ ” Rocco said, adding that he expects players to be more “engaged” as a result.

In a separate but equally impactful decision, the NCAA Division I Council also created a new transfer policy for all sports that is much fairer to student-athletes.

They no longer must receive a release from their school permitting them to leave. Under the new “notification-of-transfer” setup, student-athletes are free to shop for new destinations and their names appear in a database to which coaches at other schools have access.

In 2005, when Joe Flacco decided to transfer from Pitt to Delaware, then-Panthers coach Dave Wannstedt wouldn’t give him a release. Flacco, therefore, was ineligible to play for the Blue Hens that season. He started in 2006 and 2007 and has been the Baltimore Ravens starter ever since.

The new rule does still allow conferences to place constraints on transfers, such as those between league rivals as exists now.

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Reeder, Adderley Earn Preseason All-American Honors
By Delaware Athletics
Jun 13, 2018

NEWARK, Del. – After both earning All-CAA First Team accolades last fall, it was clear that both Troy Reeder and Nasir Adderley had earned the respect of their conference peers.

Entering their final season the Blue Hens, the duo has the respect nationally as well with both earning Second Team Preseason All-American honors from HERO Sports.

Reeder, a two-time captain from Hockessin, Del., guided the middle of the UD defense at inside linebacker and led the team with 89 stops rank in the top-10 in the CAA. He recorded 10 or more tackles three times in 2017 and had a career-high 17 stops in a road win at Maine late in the season. He also had seven tackles for loss and was in on two sacks.

Adderley, a native of Philadelphia, Pa., led a defensive secondary that ranked among the best in the CAA, ranking No. 2 in the league in passing efficiency defense and No. 3 in pass defense.

He was the team’s second leading tackler with 78 stops, including a team-high 42 solo tackles, and ranked No. 2 in the CAA with five interceptions. He had 10 or more tackles three times, including a career-high 14 vs. Maine. He also contributed four tackles for loss, three pass breakups, and two forced fumbles, and was one of the team’s mainstays on special teams.

Adderley is one of only two returning players in the country who had over 75 tackles and five INTs last fall.

The Blue Hens return to camp in early August to prep for the season-opener against Rhode Island, set for August 30 at Delaware Stadium.

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Nation's-Best Six CAA Football Teams Ranked In Athlon Top 25 Poll

Rob Washburn RICHMOND, Va. (June 5, 2018)
Athlon Sports 

Preseason FCS Top 25 Poll

Delaware (7-4) starts the year at No. 13 in the preseason national rankings. The Blue Hens narrowly missed a berth in the playoffs a year ago and are looking to return to the postseason for the first time since 2010.

Expectations are high for another outstanding season in CAA Football as the league led all FCS conferences with six teams ranked in the Athlon Sports Preseason Top 25 Poll, including five in the top 13.

Three-time defending CAA Football champion James Madison (14-1) headlines the group of CAA teams at No. 2. The Dukes, who are 28-2 over the past two years, trail only No. 1 North Dakota State, which edged JMU 17-13 in last year’s national championship game.

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New Hampshire (9-5) is right behind JMU at No. 3 in the preseason poll. The Wildcats are looking to extend their record of 14 consecutive FCS playoff appearances after advancing to the quarterfinals a year ago.

Elon (8-4) is ranked No. 10 in the preseason poll. The Phoenix earned their first playoff appearance as a CAA Football member and first overall since 2009 after going 6-2 and placing third in the conference.

Villanova (5-6) opens the season at No. 11 in the Athlon poll. The Wildcats, who have made six FCS playoff appearances since 2008, are expected to bounce back after suffering a slew of injuries to key players in 2017.

Rounding out the CAA teams in the poll is Stony Brook at No. 25. The Seawolves (10-3) advanced to the second round of the FCS playoffs last season in their first appearance since 2012. Stony Brook tied a program record for overall wins last year.

CAA Football has had four teams receive FCS playoff berths for the past four years. Trailing CAA Football’s six ranked teams in the preseason poll were the Missouri Valley Football Conference with five and the Big Sky and Southland Conferences with four apiece.

Athlon Sports FCS Preseason Top 25 Poll

North Dakota State
James Madison
New Hampshire
South Dakota State
Kennesaw State
Eastern Washington
Sam Houston State
Jacksonville State
Weber State
Elon
Villanova
Samford
Delaware
Illinois State
Nicholls
Wofford
McNeese
Montana
UNI
North Carolina A&T
Youngstown State
Austin Peay
Sacramento State
Central Arkansas
Stony Brook

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Woodson Signs Free Agent Deal With San Francisco 49ers
By Delaware Athletics
May 14, 2018

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. – Add another one to the Blue Hen fraternity in the National Football League.

Blaine Woodson, a three-time All-CAA performer for the University of Delaware, inked a free agent deal with the San Francisco 49ers after participating at their rookie mini-camp last week.

Woodson is the second member of the 2017 squad to join the NFL ranks after defensive line mate Bilal Nichols was drafted by the Chicago Bears in last month’s NFL draft.

Woodson, a 6-2, 280 lb. native of Stroudsburg, Pa. (Stroudsburg HS), earned second team All-Colonial Athletic Association honors in 2017 after ranking fifth on the team with 55 tackles while adding three sacks and an interception. He started each of his final 44 games at Delaware and finished his career with 14.5 sacks for 75 yards and 21.5 tackles for loss for 89 yards.

He also earned second team All-CAA honors and was named the CAA Defensive Rookie of the Year as a redshirt freshman in 2014 and was a second team All-CAA selection as a sophomore in 2015.

This marks the fourth time in the past five years that at least two Blue Hens earned NFL contracts.
 
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Former Hen Nichols drafted by Bears
Apr 28th, 2018 · by Andy Walter Delaware State News

Delaware defensive lineman Bilal Nichols was the first Blue Hen drafted since 2015. (Delaware sports information/Mark Campbell)

NEWARK — Well, it’s not like Bilal Nichols’ new coach will question the youngster’s alma mater.

When Nichols, the Delaware defensive tackle, heard his name called in the NFL Draft on Saturday, it was by the Chicago Bears — whose first-year head coach just happens to be former Blue Hen Matt Nagy.

Nagy and the Bears took Nichols in the fifth round, making him the 145th pick in the draft. Nagy was the one who called Nichols to tell him the news.

“It’s truly the best moment of my life, one of the most humbling moments in my life,” Nichols was quoted on the Bears’ website. “I’d like to personally thank Coach Nagy also for believing in me. It’s great, him coming from my school. We have a great relationship. I was extremely happy for him once he got his job in Chicago.”

A Hodgson Vo-Tech grad, Nichols was the second Delawarean taken in this year’s draft. On Friday, Salesianum School grad Brian O’Neill — an offensive lineman from Pitt — was drafted in the second round (No. 62 overall) by the Minnesota Vikings.

The 6-foot-4, 306-pound Nichols is only the third UD player drafted since 2008 and the first since tight end Nick Boyle went to the Baltimore Ravens in the fifth round of the 2015 draft. He’s also the first in-state Blue Hen player drafted since Dan Reeder in 1985.

Bilal Nichols

Raised by his grandparents in Newark, Nichols said this moment started seeming more possible to him as his college career went along. As a senior this past fall, he was a first-team all-Colonial Athletic Association pick and third-team FCS Division I All-American.

He got the chance to prove himself against higher-level competition at the East-West Shrine All-Star Game and then at the NFL Combine.

“The first time I stepped on campus, that was always a goal of mine,” Nichols said about being drafted. “I knew I had the opportunity to get there. Once my senior year came around, it really started to click. Once I got the chance to see scouts coming to practice and things like that, it really started to click for me.”

By the time this weekend rolled around, Nichols had a pretty good idea he would either be drafted of signed as a free agent.

He knows the thrill of being drafted only lasts so long. Now he’s got to prove himself in camp with the Bears.

“That’s the exciting thing, just knowing that I’m going to be able to compete in a camp and earn my spot on the team,” said Nichols. “I live for things like that. I’m looking forward to the challenge.”

The 6-foot-7, 297-pound O’Neill is known for his athletic ability. He was a tight end at Sallies, where he was the state Players of the Year in boys’ basketball in 2015.

While he still needs to get bigger, most NFL experts think he’s got a big upside.

“Brian was probably the best athlete of all the offensive lineman in this draft,” Vikings Director of College Scouting Jamaal Stephenson was quoted on the Vikings’ website. “You watch this guy get out and pull, it’s unbelievable how fast he moves and the ability to change directions.

“You watch him catch passes, you may have seen the clip. He’s running the ball,” Stephenson added. “You do see that athleticism. I think that helps at the second level.”(Wesley College’s Matt Gono wasn’t drafted on Saturday but the 6-foot-4, 306-pound offensive lineman signed a free-agent contract with the Atlanta Falcons late Saturday.
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Annual Blue-White Spring Game
By Delaware Athletics
Apr 21, 2018

NEWARK, Del. – The start of football season may be a few months away, but the excitement was palpable at Delaware Stadium on a beautiful Saturday afternoon.

The day began with a plethora of Blue Hens faithful, including newly signed Eagles linebacker and Delaware alum Paul Worrilow, flocked to the ninth annual Fandemonium presented by Louviers Federal Credit Union.

Bounce houses, petting zoo, a live DJ and plenty of other activities built excitement leading up to the first live look at the Blue Hens this spring.

Two sessions of 7-on-7 drills featured new QB and Delaware native Darius Wade, who went 8-for-10 in the drills, while Troy Reeder woke up the crowd early on with a pick-6 in the 7-on-7 sessions.

Joey Carter also had an interception during the sessions, while Jamil Gilmore led the way with four tackles.

In the full scrimmage series, Pat Kehoe had a strong day, finishing 8-for-12, along with his backfield mate on the day, DeJoun Lee, who went for 37 yards on seven attempts.

The second half of the full scrimmage sessions was highlighted by a drive in which Wade and Vinny Papale connected three times, including a great leaping catch for a 26-yard TD.

Defensively, Armen Ware had four tackles, including two sacks on the afternoon, while K.C. Hinton and Dominick Covatto had five tackles apiece.

Blue, the offensive side, won the contest 46-44 with a specialized scoring system.

During halftime of the event, Head Coach Danny Rocco named his three captains, seniors Joe Walker, Troy Reeder and Charles Bell. Other award winners included Reeder (defense most improved and weight room champion), M.J. Kehoe (weight room most improved) and Collin Wallish (offense most improved).
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Spring Game Coaches' Show Returns Prior to Spring Game Radio Broadcast
By Delaware Athletics
Apr 11, 2018


NEWARK, Del. – For the first time in nearly a decade, the University of Delaware football team’s annual spring game will be heard live over the air waves!

94.7 WDSD-FM returns for its 20thseason of Blue Hen football, led by the “Voice of the Blue Hens” Scott Klatzkin, who returns for this seventh season, and will host not only the Spring Game broadcast on Saturday, April 21st, but also the Spring Game Coaches Show at Klondike Kate’s on Wednesday, April 18th.

The Coaches’ Show will be live from 7-8 pm featuring head coach Danny Rocco and other distinguished guests. The show will lead up to Saturday’s live game broadcast.


Saturday’s broadcast will begin live at 2:30 p.m. with a pre-game show from Fandemonium presented by Louviers Federal Credit Union and will continue with complete game coverage including play-by-play of the contest, interviews and post-game show.



Fandemonmium 6 presented by Louivers Federal Credit union will feature the Anchor Buick GMC Fan Zone, which will be open from 1:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. and will feature FREE entertainment for all ages including pony rides, interactive inflatables, petting zoo, live music, games, food sampling, giveaways, laser tag, photo booth snapshots, face painting, balloon art and more. All of the fun in the Anchor Buick GMC Fan Zone is FREE for all fans! Food, drinks, and UDairy ice cream will also be available for purchase.



The game and coaches show can be heard live on 94.7 WDSD, WDSD.com and the iHeartRadio app.



In addition to Klatzkin, long time fixture around the Blue Hens, Bill Harman will join the radio team for the spring game and for the entire 2018 season. Harman has been the color analyst for the Delaware men’s basketball team for the past five seasons and has coached both football and basketball in the state of Delaware for the past four decades.



Harman replaces UD Hall of Famer Eddie Conti, who recently changed careers and has limited availability this fall.



“It was an honor being a part of the Blue Hens broadcast team last season. I truly enjoyed being a part of the amazing Delaware gameday atmosphere, once again, and appreciate the fans embracing me in my new role,” Conti said. “Unfortunately, my schedule will not allow me to continue on as color analyst, but I look forward to tuning in for what should be an exciting season for UD Football.”



Joining Klatzkin and Harman for the Spring Game and this fall will be Cory Nidoh, who returns to the sidelines for his second season with the Blue Hens.



Also on Saturday, April 21stwill be the annual Football Select-Your-Seat Event in Delaware Stadium will allow patrons to purchase 2018 Delaware Football season tickets. 



The Blue-White Spring Game at 3:30 p.m. will give fans the first chance to see the 2018 Delaware Football team in action!
Related Links


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Blue Hen Brotherly Love: Quartet of Brothers Enjoy Being Teammates
By Delaware Athletics
Apr 10, 2018

NEWARK, Del. – Competitive spirit is usually starts at an early age and can often be traced back to sibling rivalries in the backyard.

For four sets of brothers, that competitive spirit continued as collegiate teammates at the University of Delaware.

“Growing up, you always end up competing in the backyard and as you get older, you talk about playing together, but to actually have this opportunity, it’s awesome,” MJ Kehoe (football) said.

The Kehoe brothers (Pat and MJ) are actually part of triplets, with their sister McKayla. They aren’t the only brothers on the Blue Hen football team, joining the star linebacker duo of Colby and Troy Reeder.



In addition to the football brothers, Will and Stephen Hirschmann lace it up for the men’s lacrosse team, while Luis and Asdrubal Marcano are part of Delaware’s men’s tennis team.



“For us, it’s really unique because we’re able to play together and talk different languages and no one knows what we’re talking about besides us,” Luis Marcano said.



Becoming a Division I athlete is rarified air. In most sports, less than three percent of high school athletes become an athlete at the Division I level. The impact of being able to achieve that feat with your sibling is not lost on these Blue Hens.



“I was a part of his recruiting process because I knew how special it would be to play with my brother in college, it’s not an opportunity that many people get, so to have the chance to play with him for two years and have our parents see us on the same team, it means a lot,” Will Hirschmann said.



And for the Reeders brothers, playing together at their dad’s alma mater is even more unique.



“We grew up coming to games here and watching all the great players. We used to go home and reenact guys like [Joe] Flacco, Omar Cuff and Paul Worrilow,” Colby Reeder said. “To do that alongside each other, it’s pretty awesome.”

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Report: LB Worrilow, UD and Concord alum, to sign with Eagles

24/7 News Source 
Published Apr 3, 2018 

Worrilow is expected to provide depth to the Eagles' defense and special teams.

The 27-year-old was a part-time starter in his lone season with the Detroit Lions last season. He finished with 30 tackles and one fumble recovery in 13 games.

Worrilow has recorded 416 tackles and four sacks in 72 career games with the Atlanta Falcons and Lions. He also collected three forced fumbles and four fumble recoveries.

The 6' 1", 232 lb. Worrilow was originally signed as a college free agent by the Falcons following the 2013 NFL Draft out of Delaware. Report: LB Worrilow, UD and Concord alum, to sign with Eagles

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Spring Game and Fandemonium IX on Saturday, April 21

Courtesy of UD
03/23/18

There will be plenty for you to enjoy on Saturday, April 21 at Blue Hens Fandemonium IX presented by Louviers Federal Credit Union at the UD Athletics Complex. The day will be filled with family fun and Blue Hens competition!

The Anchor Buick GMC Fan Zone will be open from 1:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. and will feature FREE entertainment for all ages including pony rides, interactive inflatables, music, games, food sampling, giveaways, laser tag, photo booth snapshots, face painting, and more. All of the fun in the Anchor Buick GMC Fan Zone is FREE for all fans! Food, drinks, and UDairy ice cream will also be available for purchase.

At the same time, the annual Football Select-Your-Seat Event in Delaware Stadium will allow patrons to purchase 2018 Delaware Football season tickets. The Blue-White Spring Game at 3:30 p.m. will give fans the first chance to see the 2018 Delaware Football team in action!

You can also root on Blue Hens Softball as they take on College of Charleston at 12:00 p.m. and Delaware Baseball as they take on James Madison at 1:00 p.m. Admission and parking for all events are free.

12:00 p.m. Softball vs. College of Charleston
1:00 p.m. Baseball vs. James Madison
1:30 p.m. Fan Zone Opens
Select-Your-Seat Event Begins
3:30 p.m. Football Blue-White Spring Game Kicks-Off
4:30 p.m. Fan Zone Closes

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Reeder, Blue Hens Fueled By Unfinished Business
By Delaware Athletics
Mar 21, 2018

NEWARK, Del. – It may sound cliché, but there’s a fire that is burning inside the University of Delaware football spring practices.

A heightened level of intensity and tenacity. A raised level of enthusiasm when it comes to routine drills. Where is this coming from?

“I’ve never seen the intensity and competitiveness so high with any team I’ve ever been around,” senior Troy Reeder said. “We know that we left some unfinished business out there. We know that we left things on the table. There’s a fuel that is burning inside all of us from last year.”

Reeder and the Blue Hens piled up seven wins last fall, the most by Delaware since 2013. However, they all know how close they came to the program’s first FCS postseason berth since 2010.

“We had plenty of opportunities to seize last year, but ultimately, we left it up to others because we weren’t able to get the job done completely. This year, we are focused on tightening up the details and making sure that we are ready to take advantage of everything that is put in front of us,” Reeder said.

This spring also brings with it the second season under Coach Rocco and his staff, which allows everyone, student-athletes and coaches alike to fine tune their craft.

“Last year, we spent a lot of time learning each other. Not only the playbooks and systems, but also how they wanted things done and them learning our strengths,” Reeder said. “This year has been so great because we know each other now. Now it’s about fine tuning all those details and making sure we get better every time we step on the field.”

Reeder and the Blue Hens step back on the practice field on Thursday, March 22 at 2:45 p.m.

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Pro Day Brings Pursuit of NFL Dreams To Reality For Blue Hens
By Delaware Athletics
Mar 20, 2018

NEWARK, Del. – There were backyard games against the neighborhood kids, pop warner games, high school games and outstanding careers as Blue Hens.

All of that led up to Monday afternoon’s NFL Pro Day at the University of Delaware for nine former Blue Hens. The list of former Blue Hens included Anthony Jackson, Grant Roberts, Blaine Woodson, Diante Cherry, Brandon Whaley, Bilal Nichols, John Nassib, Simba Gwashavanhu and Eric Patton.

Descending upon Delaware Field House were approximately 23 scouts, including at least one NFL General Manager, from 20 different pro organizations to get measurements and conduct tests in the vertical jump, bench press, broad jump, three cone drill and shuttle drills, along with on-the-field drills with each position group.

“I’ve been extremely blessed to have incredible coaches and teammates throughout my career and they all helped us get to this day,” Nichols said. “To be able to showcase my abilities and skills in front of so many NFL organizations, it’s an honor for me just to have that opportunity.”

This year’s NFL Draft is set for April 26-28.

“I’ve been preparing for this day for a long time, it’s a day we’ve all dreamt about,” Woodson added. “Now it’s just time to hope that someone gives us a shot.”

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Flacco Invests in UD Athletics
Date: Mar 14, 2018 
Courtesey of Delaware First: The Campaign for the University of Delaware 

We are excited to share with you that one of the most successful student-athletes in University of Delaware history, Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco, and his wife, Dana, have made a significant gift to the future of UD Athletics. As part of Delaware First: The Campaign for the University of Delaware, the Flacco family's gift will directly support UD Athletics’ Building Our Home initiative, including the construction of the Whitney Athletic Center and the renovation of Delaware Stadium.

“Football and family,” Joe says, when asked what matters most in his life. In fact, it was the Flaccos’ four children that inspired the couple to give back to Joe’s alma mater. “We are at a point in our lives where we are raising our kids and thinking about their education. It has allowed me to think about how important UD was for me in my development. I am thrilled to be a part of making the University even better for future generations,” said Flacco, Class of 2008.

With this significant investment into the Delaware Athletics facility campaign, over $52 million has been committed towards the $60 million goal. With $7.8 million remaining to raise before construction begins, UD Athletics is relying on its dedicated supporters to reach its goal of shovels in the ground after the 2018 football season.

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Homecoming and Parents Weekend Dates Set for 2018
By Delaware Athletics
Mar 12, 2018

NEWARK, Del. – Football Saturdays in Newark build memories for a lifetime.

More memories are set to be created this upcoming fall when the University of Delaware hosts their annual Homecoming and Parents/Family Weekend.

Those dates have been solidified for 2018 with Parents/Family Weekend set for the Oct. 13th football game against Elon and Homecoming slated for Oct. 27th against Towson.

For the second straight year, Delaware Athletics will host its Celebration of Champions recognition during Homecoming Weekend. The recognition honors NCAA and conference championship teams that are celebrating their 10, 20, 25, 30, 40 and 50-year anniversaries. Student-athlete alumni that were part of these teams will participate in an on-field ceremony at Delaware Stadium prior to kickoff.

This year, Delaware athletics will honor the following championship teams:

50 years – 1968 Football, 1969 Men’s Golf

40 years - 1979 Men’s Track, 1979 Baseball

30 years – 1988 Field Hockey, 1988 Football, 1989 Women’s Swimming, 1989 Men’s Swimming, 1989 Women’s Basketball, 1989 Women’s Tennis, 1989 Baseball, 1989 Men’s Golf

25 years – 1994 Men’s Track & Field

20 years – 1999 Baseball, 1999 Men’s Lacrosse, 1999 Men’s Basketball, 1999 Men’s Indoor Track & Field

10 years – 2008 Volleyball

Season tickets are on sale now. Renewing season ticket members can click here to access the season ticket renewal application. Fans interested in becoming a new season ticket member can do so for as low as $89 (less than $15 per game) and payments can be split into four equal monthly payments using the Payment Plan option.

Fans who purchase new season tickets now will have priority to select new seats during the seating assignment process that will begin on April 17th. More information can be found in the 2018 Season Ticket Guide.

To become a new season ticket holder, please click here or call The Delaware Ticket Office at (302) 831-2257. Fans can also request to be contacted by a Ticket Office representative by clicking here.

Full game times and additional game information will be provided at a later date.

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Rocco Finalizes Coaching Staff For 2018
By Delaware Athletics
Mar 1, 2018

NEWARK, Del. – With spring football right around the corner, University of Delaware football head coach Danny Rocco has finalized his coaching staff for the upcoming season.

Joining Rocco’s staff will be a familiar face to Blue Hens fans as Nick Rapone will take over the cornerback coaching duties, along with Kevin Reihner (Offensive Assistant/Tight Ends Coach) and Greg Meyer (Recruiting Assistant/Offensive Quality Control).

Recent alum Jalen Kindle will join the coaching staff as the Defensive Assistant and work with the linebackers, while Manny Rojas and Clint Sintim, will serve as Co-Special Teams Coordinators, along with their coaching duties with the inside and outside linebackers.

“I’m really excited to complete our staff as we head into our second season here at Delaware. We’ve really been able to round out our staff with extremely knowledgeable and experienced coaches and it puts us in a good position headed into spring ball in a few weeks,” Rocco said.

Rapone returns to Delaware after spending five seasons working with the Arizona Cardinals defensive backs. He coached five Pro-Bowl selections and two All-Pro selections during his time in Phoenix. This is Rapone’s second stint with the Blue Hens, after he served as the defensive coordinator from 2006-12, where he was a part of two National Championship game appearances (2007, 2010). He also had stints on the defensive staffs at Temple, UConn, Pittsburgh and ETSU.

“A lot of our fans and supporters are familiar with Nick as he spent numerous years here with a lot of success working with K.C. [Keeler]. I’ve known him for quite some time and was certainly excited to here about his interest in the job and the knowledge and experience he will bring to our staff,” Rocco said.

Reihner joins the staff after spending last year as an offensive assistant at Wake Forest and the 2016-17 campaign as the Offensive Quality Control Specialist at Fordham. He played collegiately at Stanford University and Penn State, where he was a member of the offensive line and a part of three consecutive BCS bowl games.

Meyer is a familiar face to Offensive Coordinator Matt Simon and new QBs Coach Alex Wood, having worked alongside both of them at the University of Buffalo. Meyer spent the past five seasons with the Bulls, where he was served on the offensive staff in various capacities, including player development, wide receivers and offensive quality control. Prior to coaching at Buffalo, Meyer worked with the wide receivers and DBs and Lycoming College. Meyer’s collegiate playing career was also at Buffalo, where he was a three-time All-Conference selection.

Kindle remains in Newark and transitions into the coaching role, after playing the past five years with the linebacking core. He was a four-time CAA All-Academic Conference honoree and this past year was a finalist for the Campbell Trophy Award, the academic Heisman for FCS and FBS programs.

The Blue Hens take to the field for the first time this spring on Tuesday, March 13. A full practice schedule can be found at BlueHens.com.

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Blue Hens Set To Open Practice March 13, Fandemonium and Spring Game Set for April 21
By Delaware Athletics
Feb 7, 2018

NEWARK, Del. – After a seven-win season and a top-30 ranking last fall, anticipation is quite high for the 2018 University of Delaware football season.

Preparation for that season will start March 13 as the Blue Hens have announced their full 15-day spring practice schedule.

Delaware will practice Tuesdays (2:45), Thursdays (2:45), Saturdays (10:30) and Sundays (10:30) up until spring break and start up again on April 5 when students return from break. All practices are open to the public.

The spring schedule will be capped off with ninth annual Blue Hen Fandemonium, presented by Louviers Federal Credit Union, which will run in conjunction with the Annual Blue-White Spring Game on Saturday, April 21st at 3:30 p.m.

Delaware fans of all ages are invited to come out and enjoy an action-packed day with Blue Hen Athletics & Recreation, including a full day of free entertainment and plenty of chances to root on the Blue Hens on the field! The Anchor Buick GMC Fan Zone, located in front of the west entrance of Delaware Stadium, will feature numerous family fun including inflatable activities for all ages, music, games, face painting, giveaways and much more.

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Wood Brings Wealth Of Experience To Blue Hens' Coaching Staff as QB Coach
By Delaware Athletics
Feb 2, 2018

NEWARK, Del. – With more than 35 years of coaching experience at both the collegiate and professional levels, there’s no doubt that Alex Wood will bring a wealth of knowledge to the University of Delaware football program.

Wood will join Head Coach Danny Rocco’s coaching staff and will take over the QB coaching duties. The Massillon, Ohio native has been a head coach at two FCS schools, the latest coming at Florida A&M. He is no stranger to the CAA, serving as the head coach at JMU from 1995-98.

“We’re really excited to have Alex join our coaching staff. He brings an impressive resume of success and has been an outstanding coach for a number of years at a variety of different places and levels,” Rocco said. “He has served on offensive staffs in the NFL, he has been a head coach at the FCS levels and has been on several offensive staffs at the BCS levels as well.”

With Wood’s addition, offensive coordinator Matt Simon, will move to a focus with the running backs. Assistant Coach Bill Polin will take over the offensive line duties.

“With Alex’s addition, it not only brings someone with a wealth of knowledge and experience, but it also allows us to move Matt and Bill into roles they have plenty of experience with as well and can help us as we game plan each week,” Rocco added.

Wood’s collegiate experience began as a student-athlete at Iowa as a running back and special teams player. After graduation, he switched into the coaching role and served as a graduate assistant with the Hawkeyes.

He followed with stops at Kent State (1979-80), Southern Illinois (1981), Southern (1982-84) and Wyoming (1985-86).

Wood’s BCS experience started in 1987 at Washington State and followed with four years at the University of Miami, where he was a part of two national championship teams, including a perfect 12-0 season in 1991.

After two years at Wake Forest, Wood’s first head coaching opportunity came at JMU in 1995, where he led the Dukes to the Division I-AA playoffs in just his first season.

Wood moved to the pro ranks in 1999, when Dennis Green hired him to serve as the QBs coach with the Minnesota Vikings, where he worked for four seasons. In 2000, Dante Culpepper earned All-Pro status under his tutelage.

He also spent time with the Bengals and Arizona Cardinals, before moving back to the collegiate ranks in 2006 as the QBs coach at Arkansas for two seasons. A one-year stint at Miami (Ohio) was followed by four seasons at Buffalo, where he served as the offensive coordinator and QBs coach.

In 2015, Wood jumped back into the head coaching role at Florida A&M, where he spent the past three seasons before joining the Blue Hens. 

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Nichols Invited to NFL Combine
By Delaware Athletics
Jan 29, 2018

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Just a few months into his post-collegiate life, it’s not taking Bilal Nichols long to rack up frequent flyer miles.

Nichols, who has participated in the East West Shrine Game and the Reese’s Senior Bowl in the past two weeks, earned yet another opportunity to perform in front of NFL eyes, getting an invite to next month’s NFL Combine in Indianapolis.

The Delaware native becomes just the seventh University of Delaware student-athlete to earn an invitation to the NFL Scouting Combine, joining Nick Boyle (2015), Zach Kerr (2014), Joe Flacco (2008), Pat Devlin (2011), Ben Patrick (2007) and Eddie Conti (1999).

The NFL Scouting Combine will include over 300 of the top college football players in the country. Top executives, coaching staffs, player personnel departments, and medical personnel from all 32 NFL teams will be on hand to evaluate the nation’s top college football players eligible for the upcoming NFL Draft. Nichols will work out with the other defensive line on March 4. The event will once again be televised live on the NFL Network.

“Getting invited to the combine is a tremendous honor and another chance to represent the University of Delaware,” Nichols said. “The past two weeks with the Shrine Game and the Senior Bowl were great experiences and opportunities for me, and I am looking at the Combine the same way. I am very excited. I can’t wait to get out to Indianapolis.”

The 6-4, 290 lb. Nichols is the first UD defensive lineman to earn All-American honors since 2013. He also earned first team All-Colonial Athletic Association and third team All-Eastern College Athletic Conference (All-East) honors.

A four-year standout, Nichols played in 44 career games with 21 starts and recorded 104 tackles (50 solo), 10.5 sacks, 16.5 tackles for loss, three forced fumbles, two interceptions, and 10 pass breakups.

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Nichols Earns Invite To Reese's Senior Bowl
By Delaware Athletics
Jan 24, 2018

MOBILE, Ala. – When big time players make big time plays in big time games, they get noticed.

That’s exactly what happened to Bilal Nichols, who had a sensation week at last week’s East West Shrine Game in St. Petersburg, Fla. His efforts garnered more attention from NFL organizations, which landed him another chance to display his talents at the prestigious Reese’s Senior Bowl on January 27.

He becomes the fifth Blue Hen in program history to earn a Senior Bowl invitation, joining Dennis Johnson (’73), Ben Patrick (’07), Joe Flacco (’08) and Nick Boyle (’15).

Nichols finished his career as an All-American and three-time All-CAA selection played in 44 career games with 21 starts and recorded 104 tackles (50 solo), 10.5 sacks, 16.5 tackles for loss, three forced fumbles, two interceptions, and 10 pass breakups.

The game will be shown live on NFL Network at 2:30 p.m. from Ladd-Peebles Stadium in Mobile, Ala.

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Nichols Takes The National Stage At East-West Shrine Game

By Delaware Athletics Jan 19, 2018

The streets of Chester, Pa., aren’t the easiest place to grow up. On the outskirts of Philadelphia, Chester’s crime rate and drug population make it a difficult environment to raise a child.

That’s where Bilal Nichols’ story began. Running around the streets of Chester under the supervision of his grandparents, Adova and Dolores Bolton, Nichols quickly found a home in the the athletic community, starring in both basketball and football.

“It’s crazy to think about where my story started and now I’m sitting in meetings with NFL scouts and having the opportunity to play in front of a national audience. It’s really humbling for me,” Nichols said.

The opportunity that Nichols is talking about is the East West Shrine Game, which is being played in St. Petersburg, Fla. this weekend at Tropicana Field. It will be shown live on the NFL Network.

“I’ve tried to soak it in as much as possible. To have the chance to play against so many talented players and compete against some of the top collegiate players in the country, I’m incredibly grateful,” Nichols said.

Nichols’ week began last Saturday with his arrival in Florida and getting situated at the hotel. Sunday brought some team meetings and a visit to the Shriners Hospital for Children in St. Petersburg, where the players met and spent time with the patients.

“You quickly realize how lucky you are when you spend time with those kids. The game of football seems pretty small when you are seeing some of the things that those kids are fighting against every single day. It’s pretty humbling,” Nichols added.

The rest of Nichols’ week has been jam-packed, starting at 7 a.m. and usually not ending until close to 10 p.m. In between, he’s been in practices, drill sessions, workouts, meetings with coaches and interviews with NFL organizations and scouts.

Nichols and his defensive linemates have spent the week being coached by Marcus Lewis, the son of Marvin Lewis, longtime head coach of the Cincinnati Bengals.

“It’s been a pretty busy week, but it’s been awesome to have the chance to compete against these guys and really showcase my abilities in front of so many scouts,” Nichols said.

And one thing Nichols has been sure to do all week? Rep the Blue and Gold.

“Every place I go, I’m wearing my Delaware gear and talking about Delaware. I want everyone to know that the 302 has the talent. I want people to know about Delaware football and the tradition that we have. I’m proud to be a Blue Hen,” Nichols stated.

Nichols recorded the first sack of the game that resulted in a fumble for the first touchdown of  the game.

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Former players full of Tubby Raymond stories at memorial for Blue Hen coach
Jan 13th, 2018 · by Andy Walter  - Delaware State News

Video of Memorial Service: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7SjkmeGyGEE&feature=youtu.be

Former Vice President Joe Biden speaks at Friday’s Tubby Raymond memorial. (Delaware sports information/Mark Campbell)

NEWARK — So here’s a story for you, said Billy Vergantino.

The first time the future Delaware quarterback met Tubby Raymond, he was a little nervous.

The Blue Hens football coaching legend was coming to Vergantino’s house to recruit the high school senior.

Vergantino remembers thinking through what he was going to say while his family was making sure the house was straightened up.

Everything was perfect — until Raymond walked through the door.

“My brother, who’s five, takes a full-out sprint from across the room and launches himself at Coach Raymond,” says Vergantino, picking up the story. “He’s airborne, heading towards Coach. And Coach has no option but to catch him and the kid’s legs wrap around him.

“He (Raymond) is like, ‘Geez, hey kiddo.’ If you know Coach Raymond, it’s going to make you laugh when you picture this, right?”

There were a thousand stories like that flying around the Carpenter Center on Friday afternoon.

Hundreds of Raymond’s former players came together for a memorial service for the late Hall of Fame coach. Raymond, who died on Dec. 8 at the age of 92, spent 48 years coaching football at Delaware, including 36 seasons as head coach.

The memorial may have been as big a single gathering of former Blue Hen football players, both old and young, as there’s ever been.

They all talked about the respect they held for their old coach, his constant attention to detail and his ability to make them feel like they were playing for something bigger than themselves.

But with that many former players all in one place, there were bound to be Tubby stories.

Lots of them.

Raymond’s son David told the audience about the first time he got to punt for his father. It was after the Hens’ starter got injured in the first half of a game.

David said he was a nervous wreck.

So, when the time finally came, the younger Raymond was standing next to assistant coach Ted Kempski on the sidelines.

David said his father looked at Kempski and said, “Is that all we’ve got?”

Former star quarterback Rich Gannon remembers the time Raymond was making the QBs practice form tackling in the spring.

“I was over there and I must have been fooling around or something,” said Gannon. “Tubby was watching from the other field. He screamed over in that voice, he said, ‘Gannon, you better figure out how to do that because you’re going to throw a lot of interceptions. You’re going to need to learn how to tackle.’”

Tubby Raymond memorabilia on display at Friday’s memorial.

Even former Vice President Joe Biden had a story about playing for Raymond. Biden was a member of UD’s freshman team in 1961 when Raymond was an assistant coach.

Biden said he had been particularly fast in a drill where the defensive backs worked on back-pedaling.

“Tubby looked at me in classic Tubby Raymond frame of mind and said, ‘Biden, I don’t know what kind of player you’re going to end up being but I never saw anyone who could run backwards as fast as you,’” Biden told the crowd. “I didn’t know whether to tell him to go to hell or say ‘thanks.’”

Of course all the stories weren’t about Tubby’s infamous one-liners.

Leon Clarke, now an associate principal at Smyrna High, remembers the pressure of trying to get Raymond his 300th career victory in 2001.

The milestone came in a 10-6 win over Richmond in Tubby’s last game coaching in Delaware Stadium.

“You don’t want to leave Coach Raymond at 299,” said Clarke, who played defensive back. “We tossed him up on our shoulders and we carried him off the field for the legend he is, was and will always be for us. Being a part of that process, it was incredible.”

With so many players in town on Friday, former standout fullback Dan Reeder was sure there would be a lot of debates over whose teams were the best.

But he said every player would also agree that there was something special about the way Raymond made them feel about the program.

“We were always prepared,” said Reeder. “I never remember coming into a game at Delaware thinking that we were the underdog. I always thought that we were the favorite. That’s one thing the Wing-T gave us. When it was cranking, it was exciting to watch and it was exciting to run.

“You always heard the people saying, ‘Turn the page Tubby, turn the page.’ But there was a method to his madness. He was very smart and he had smart guys around him.”

What was clear on Friday was that all the preaching Tubby did about Delaware football tradition is a very tangible thing.

The players who came out for the memorial were bonded not only by being part of Blue Hen football but in their experience of being coached by the man himself. Even after he retired in 2002, Raymond was still around the program, painting his trademark senior portraits up until midway through this past season.

So while guys who became stars playing for Raymond — like Gannon, Reeder, George Schmitt and Scott Brunner — were on hand, so were younger players, like Joe Flacco and Pat Devlin, who were never coached by Tubby.

There was also a realization that, with the way college coaches move around now, there aren’t likely to be many more coaches like Raymond, who are involved with so many players at one program.

“I really think it’s special, it’s unique,” said Brian Ginn, another former Blue Hen QB. “You’re not going to see 35 years at one school again, in my opinion.

“It’s really a special bond that we all carry. We may not know each other but we played for Coach Raymond. Once we see each other, there’s that instant bond right then and there.”

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QB Wade transferring to Hens; UD gets dramatic hoop win; Wesley men win big
Jan 12th, 2018 · by Delaware State News 

Wesley guard Brian Cameron goes up for a shot jumper defended by Jordan Johnson (right) and Daniel Alexander of Frostburg State. Special To The Delaware State News/Gary Emeigh

Darius Wade is coming home for his last year of college football.

The former Middletown High standout quarterback announced on social media on Saturday that he is transferring to Delaware.

A 6-foot, 215-pound lefthander, Wade will have one season of eligibility remaining after spending the last four years at Boston College.

“I am more than blessed to have this great opportunity to be a part of the blue hen family,” Wade wrote on his Instagram page. “Now it’s time to get to work and bring a championship back to our great Delaware fans because you guys deserve it!”

The addition of the 2012 state Offensive Player of the Year means the Blue Hens will have three senior QBs with starting experience in Joe Walker, J.P. Caruso and Wade.

Wade had an up-and-down career at BC, earning the starting job early in his sophomore season before suffering a season-ending ankle injury. He completed 62-of-102 passes with three touchdowns and three interceptions this past season, starting his final three games.

College basketball

MEN, Delaware 61, James Madison 60: Ryan Daly hit an off-balance jumper with 14 seconds remaining before JMU missed at the buzzer as the Blue Hens scored the final eight points of the game to pull out a dramatic CAA win.

JW Lawson of Wesley goes airborne for a layup in the first half against Frostburg State Saturday. Special To The Delaware State News/Gary Emeigh

The Hens (11-8, 4-2 CAA), who won their third straight game, trailed 60-53 with 3:06 left. Anthony Mosley (11 points) scored on a driving layup to bring Delaware within a point, and following a Dukes miss, Daly (19) grabbed the rebound and went the length of the floor before hitting a tough eight-foot jumper to give the Hens the lead.

“Ryan Daly wants the ball in his hands, and he hit a big shot to give us the lead,” said UD coach Martin Ingelsby. “We have a confident group that is learning how to win games. We have a good vibe about us, and I like where we’re at as a program.”

Ryan Allen contributed 14 points while Eric Carter added nine points and a season-high 13 rebounds.

Wesley 72, Frostburg State 51: Brian Cameron netted 26 points to pace the Wolverines (3-5 CAC, 7-8 overall) to the win.

Trailing by two, Wesley finished the contest on a 29-8 run. J.W. Lawson (11 points, 9 rebounds), Derick Charles (6 points, 10 rebounds) also led the Wolverines.

WOMEN, Frostburg State 52, Wesley 41: Stacey O’Neale and Paige Hailstock, tallied 12 points and 10 points respectively, for the Wolverines in the loss.

Boys’ basketball

Caesar Rodney 70, Sussex Central 43: Davione Robinson netted 22 points with Shaft Clark adding 21 to pace the Riders to the Henlopen North win on Friday night.

Leading by two, CR outscored the Golden Knights 58-33 over the final three quarters.

The Knights were led by Ryhlee Matthews (18 points) and Jahlier Pettyjohn (15).

St. Mark’s 51, Milford 33: Daniel Shockley had 11 points for the Buccaneers in the loss.

Girls’ basketball

St. Thomas More 63, Wilm. Christian 35: Aniah Patterson tallied 24 points, including four three-pointers, and DahNaija Barnes added 15 to lead the Ravens.

With the game tied 10-10, St. Thomas More outscored the Lions, 23-7, in the second quarter.
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Chicago Bears Name Former Blue Hen All-American Matt Nagy Head Coach
By Delaware Athletics
Jan 8, 2018

CHICAGO -- A former University of Delaware Blue Hen is now ready to fly in the Windy City.

Matt Nagy, an All-American quarterback for Delaware during a record-breaking career in 1997-2000 and most recently the offensive coordinator for the National Football League's Kansas City Chiefs, was named head coach of the Chicago Bears on Monday. He replaces John Fox, who served as the Bears' head coach the last three seasons.

Nagy, a native of Manheim, Pa., becomes the first former Blue Hen to earn a head coaching position in the National Football League. His general manager at Kansas City, Brett Veach, is also a former UD football teammate and standout.

Both played for legendary Delaware head coach Tubby Raymond, who served as head coach of the Blue Hens for 36 seasons in 1966-2001. A member of the College Football Hall of Fame, Raymond passed away last month at the age of 92.

Nagy, who has served on Andy Reid's staff with both the Philadelphia Eagles (2008-12) and the Chiefs (2013-17), was promoted to the Chiefs' offensive coordinator position prior to the 2016 season. He led Kansas City to the NFL playoffs four times over the last five years under Reid, including each of the last three seasons.

A strong-armed quarterback, Nagy led Delaware to the 2000 NCAA FCS semifinals when he earned third team The Sports Network All-American honors and was a first team All-Atlantic 10 selection. 

He rewrote the Delaware record books, setting marks for career completions (502), yards (8,214), and touchdowns (58), season yards (3,426) and touchdowns (29), and yardage in a game (556). He broke several records held by former NFL Most Valuable Player Rich Gannon and also had a few of his marks broken by current Baltimore Ravens veteran quarterback Joe Flacco.

Nagy continued his career in the Arena Football League and played six seasons for four different organizations and led two of them to the Arena Bowl Championship. He earned second team All-Arena honors in 2005 with the Georgia Force.

In addition to Nagy and Veach, Delaware has five current players in the NFL, including Flacco (Baltimore); safety Mike Adams (Carolina); linebacker Paul Worrilow (Detroit), tight end Nick Boyle (Baltimore); and defensive tackle Zach Kerr (Denver).

Among the NFL coaching ranks, former UD head coach Dave Brock is an offensive assistant coach and former UD assistant Kyle Flood is assistant offensive line coach with Atlanta; former assistant John Perry is the wide receivers coach with Houston; former assistant Devin Fitzsimmons is a special teams assistant with Detroit; former assistant Nick Rapone is defensive backs coach at Arizona; and former Delaware wide receiver Joey Bleymaier is an offensive quality control coach with Kansas City.

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Chicago Bears hire former UD QB, Kansas City Chiefs assistant Matt Nagy as head coach

WDEL
DJ McAneny & Sean Greene Published Jan 8, 2018 

Nagy was a former Manheim Central High School, University of Delaware, and Arena Football League standout, and joined former Eagles head coach Andy Reid in Kansas City as the Chiefs' quarterbacks. He'll now be at the helm of the Chicago Bears. 

Former University of Delaware quarterback Matt Nagy has been named the next head coach of the Chicago Bears.

Nagy, who graduated from UD in 2001, spent the last five years as an assistant coach under former Philadelphia Eagles head coach Andy Reid in Kansas City, including serving as Offensive Coordinator in 2017.

The Lancaster, Pennsylvania product split time as a starter with Brian Ginn during his career at Delaware, but left the school holding over 20 career passing records, including passing yards (8,214) and touchdowns (58).

He then went on to a career in the Arena Football League, playing for four teams and throwing for 18,666 yards and 374 touchdowns.

In his down time, he was slowly working his way up the coaching ranks. Nagy started working as an assistant coach at his high school alma mater, Manheim Central (2001), and added stops at New Jersey's Cedar Crest and Palmyra Area high schools.

Reid then brought Nagy in as a coaching intern during Eagles training camp in 2008 and 2009, before serving as a coaching assistant in 2010.

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Former Blue Hen All-American, NFL Standout Rich Gannon Gives to Delaware First
By Delaware Athletics
Jan 8, 2018
by Tywanda L. Cuffy

NEWARK, Del. -- Less than two months after the public announcement of Delaware First: The Campaign for the University of Delaware, alumnus and retired National Football League star Richard J. Gannon, of the Class of 1987, and, his wife, Michelle D. Gannon, stepped forward with a major commitment to UD Athletics.

The Gannons’ gift will support Athletics’ Building Our Home initiative, with the construction of the Whitney Athletic Center and the renovation of Delaware Stadium.

“We felt it was important to recognize all the wonderful things that Delaware is trying to do to ensure student-athletes have the best opportunities, the best facilities and the best chance at being successful,” said Gannon.

UD Director of Athletics and Recreation Services Chrissi Rawak said she is humbled by the Gannons’ contribution.

“Rich is the true definition of a Blue Hen, and we are grateful that in addition to all he’s done for UD as an alum, he and his family have chosen to invest in Building Our Home through a philanthropic gift,” Rawak said. “He’s a tremendous leader, and we are appreciative that he is one of many football alumni who have stepped up and contributed to this important project, investing in the future of Delaware Football and Delaware Athletics.”

Beyond fortifying UD’s athletic facilities, Gannon truly hopes that his gift will transform the lives of student-athletes.

“I think it’s imperative that we continue to develop the best student-athletes that there are in college football and set the bar high through our standard of excellence and our commitment to the institution, to education and to the core values that we hold near and dear to our hearts,” Gannon said. “We have to never lose sight of our ultimate goal to develop young people in being the very best that they can be, so that when they leave, they will be difference makers.”
Playing for Delaware

Gannon first became acquainted with Delaware Football in the early ‘80s, when he traveled to UD from Philadelphia to watch his older brother and alumnus John J. Gannon, of the Class of 1984, play as a three-year starter for the Blue Hens.

“I thought UD would be a great place to get a great education and play for a really solid college football program,” Rich Gannon said.

Shortly thereafter, the younger Gannon found himself honored to start for Delaware under the leadership of legendary Delaware Coach Tubby Raymond. When Gannon looks back to his first game as a starting quarterback, two distinct things come to mind.

“We won, and I got hurt,” he said with a laugh. It was Gannon’s sophomore year, and he was playing against James Madison University at Delaware Stadium. “I got hit really good by a guy named Charles Haley, who was a defensive-end for JMU.”

Unbeknownst to Gannon at the time, Haley would go on to win five Super Bowls with the San Francisco 49ers and the Dallas Cowboys and be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Despite the challenge of that starting game, Gannon went on to enjoy a successful football career as a Blue Hen. As a sophomore, Gannon won the Eastern College Athletic Conference Division I-AA Rookie of the Year award. During his senior year, Gannon was recognized as the Yankee Conference’s Offensive Player of the Year and was an honorable mention All-American selection. He set 21 school records, including total offense (7,432 yards), passing yards (5,927), pass attempts (845) and completions (462) and was the only Delaware player at the time to achieve at least 2,000 yards of offense three years in a row.

“I took great pride in playing for Delaware,” Gannon said. “My best friends are not players I played with in the NFL, but players I played with at Delaware.”
A Hen in the NFL

After graduation, Gannon entered the 1987 NFL draft, where the New England Patriots picked him in the fourth round. The Patriots traded Gannon to the Minnesota Vikings before the 1987 season. Gannon then played 12 seasons as a quarterback for the Vikings, the Washington Redskins and the Kansas City Chiefs, before joining the Oakland Raiders in 1999. In 2002, he set NFL and franchise records in leading the Raiders to their third straight AFC Western Division title and advancing to Super Bowl XXXVII as the AFC champions. That year he was named the NFL’s Most Valuable Player. Gannon ended his 17-season NFL career with 180 touchdown passes and 2,533 completions in 4,206 attempts for 28,743 yards. Gannon credits his start at Delaware to many of the things he was able to accomplish in the NFL.

“The ability to process a lot of information quickly, the preparation, the learning, the studying, the memorizing and the core value of taking care of myself both mentally and physically, I learned as a player at Delaware,” he said. In August 2005, Gannon retired before the start of his 18th NFL season and later that year was inducted into the UD Athletics Hall of Fame. In 2017, he was named to the UD Alumni Association’s Wall of Fame.
From NFL to CBS

When Gannon retired from football in 2005, he joined CBS-TV and for the past 13 years has worked as a game analyst for the NFL on CBS. He is a highly regarded sports analyst and like the NFL, his job takes him all over the country where he is met frequently by an ever-growing brotherhood of Delaware Football alumni. In Kansas City, the general manager, Brett Veach, of the Class of 2002 and 2004, and the offensive coordinator, Matt Nagy, of the Class of 2001, are Delaware alumni who both played for Raymond. At a production meeting in Baltimore, Gannon once sat across from alumnus Joe Flacco, quarterback for the Baltimore Ravens. While covering a game in Indiana, he ran into alumnus Mike Adams, safety for the Carolina Panthers (who then played for the Indianapolis Colts). The list goes on and on.

“It goes to show that you can play at Delaware and be in the Super Bowl or be an MVP,” Gannon said. “There’s no limit as to what you can accomplish.”
Remembering Tubby

Gannon’s pride for Delaware is deeply rooted in the close relationships he forged with other Blue Hens, including the one with the late Tubby Raymond.

“Tubby instilled toughness, discipline, dedication, perseverance and character in his program – really a lot of the core qualities and characteristics that you’re looking for in any person – not just a football player or an athlete,” Gannon said. Tubby became a mentor to Gannon over the years, someone he revered greatly, and Gannon credits Raymond for teaching him how to handle the adversity that comes with being a professional football player. “You don’t play 18 years in the National Football League if it weren’t for Tubby Raymond and the University of Delaware. Every day was a lesson with Tubby.”
Continuing the Legacy

Appreciating the lifelong relationships he has forged at Delaware, Gannon hopes his gift will afford other student-athletes the same experiences, opportunities and memories he had.

“I hope and anticipate that the players that go through under Coach Rocco will get the same experience, because I know what he stands for … I know what drives this guy,” Gannon said.

Coach Danny Rocco expressed similar admiration of Gannon and other Delaware football alumni who have supported him in his new role as head football coach.

“I have truly been touched by the kindness and support shown by the Delaware football alumni community in my first year as a Blue Hen. The conversations I have had with student-athlete alumni have demonstrated a strong passion for the Blue and Gold, and I appreciate the legacy they have paved for our current players. The traditions, the greatness and the tenacity of Delaware football starts with our alums. As a coach, I have seen firsthand how pivotal it is to have a strong alumni network, and I feel fortunate to have that here at Delaware.”
Banding Together

The Delaware football alumni network is indeed strong. In addition to Gannon, nearly 20 other UD football alumni and their families have made individual major contributions in support of UD’s Athletic Facilities.

“We are so fortunate to have such a committed football alumni family here at Delaware. So many have been generous with their time, talent and treasure,” said Rawak.

Delaware football alumnus Tom Hall, of the Class of 1978, remembers the very first time he experienced a UD football game. It was Sept. 21, 1968 and the Fightin’ Blue Hens had crushed Hofstra University 35-0. He was just 13-years-old at the time and his brother Charles W. Hall, Jr., of the Class of 1972, was a fullback for Delaware. Five years later, Tom would go on to play at Delaware, too.

“The football tradition runs deep here, and if we are going to continue to compete at the highest level, our athletes must have the finest facilities,” Hall said. “When the new facility is finished, I believe there will be many young boys and girls that will feel just like I did that day in 1968.”

Like Gannon and Hall, double Dels Al Minite, of the Class of 1980, and his wife, Susan G. Minite, of the Class of 1980, decided to invest in Building Our Home after considering everything they have been able to achieve from the relationships built and opportunities gained during their time at the University of Delaware.

“If it wasn’t for the scholarship I was awarded to play football at UD, I am not sure I would have been able to attend college,” Al Minite said. “I know this project will enhance the experience for numerous student-athletes and will heighten awareness of Delaware Athletics.”

Gannon couldn’t agree more.

“I think it’s important that we continue those traditions,” Gannon said. “Not only the tradition of winning and having the best program, but also providing student-athletes the same opportunities that we had. It’s the right thing to do.”

The following University of Delaware alumni and their spouses have made major gift commitments to this project:

Robert E. Ashby '77 and Sandra Keene Ashby '77

Paul F. '83 and Lisa Brown

Lawrence R. '58 '66M and Barbara V. Catuzzi

Vance A. Funk III '65 and Elaine Trzcinski Funk '69

Richard J. '87 and Michelle D. Gannon

Thomas E. Hall '78 and Patricia Kilbane Hall '78M

Joseph V. Jerkovich '62 and Janet Coote Jerkovich '63

Richard H. '71 and Gail D. Keller '71

Alfred L. Minite '80 and Susan Gilman Minite '80

David W. Price '90 and Kristin Shannon Price '88

Michael S. '67 and Elizabeth R. Purzycki

Joseph J. Purzycki '71 '77M and Sharon Kirk Purzycki '71

Daniel R. '86 and Cheryl K. Reeder

Kenneth L. '53 and Theodora F. Rieth

Gregory T. '91 and Kristi Rogerson

Fred P. Jr. '63 and Madeleine T. Rullo

Ethan A. Jr. '57 and Patricia A. Stenger

Thomas W. Van Grofski '66 '68M and Jacqueline Harding Van Grofski '63

John E. Jr. '64 and Barbara C. Wallace
About the Campaign

Delaware First: The Campaign for the University of Delaware was publicly launched on Nov. 10, 2017. The comprehensive engagement and fundraising campaign will unite Blue Hens across the nation to accelerate UD’s mission of cultivating tomorrow’s leaders, creating solutions to grand challenges, inspiring innovations and transforming lives. The united effort will help create an extraordinary student experience at UD and extend its impact on the region and the world. Building Our Home is a core priority of the Campaign, focused on a bold $60 million project to renovate Delaware Stadium and build the new, state-of-the-art Whitney Athletic Center for UD student-athletes.

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Blue Hen Center Brody Kern Earns STATS FCS All-American Honors
By Delaware Athletics
Dec 20, 2017

NEWARK, Del. -- The University of Delaware football squad was honored with another postseason award Tuesday as senior center Brody Kern earned a spot on the STATS NCAA Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) All-American team.

Kern, a 6-2, 285 lb. senior from York, Pa. (West York High School) and a four-year starter for the Blue Hens, was selected as a third team All-American.

He becomes the second Blue Hen to earn All-American honors this month after senior nose tackle Bilal Nichols was a third team pick by Phil Steele Publications last week.

Kern, a co-captain, is the first UD player to earn All-American notice by STATS (formerly The Sports Network) since Nick Boyle was honored in 2014. He is the first true center from Delaware honored since Kheon Hendricks earned All-American recognition by two different organizations following the 2008 campaign.

Kern, who earned first team All-Colonial Athletic Association honors back in November, second team All-CAA mention in 2016, and third team All-CAA laurels in 2017.

A management information systems major who will graduate in May, Kern was a four-year standout at center who started each of his final 39 career games for the Blue Hens.

He was the anchor for an offensive line that helped Delaware rank No. 2 in the CAA in fewest sacks allowed (20) and rushing offense (192.5 yards per game) this past season when the Hens went 7-4 and narrowly missed a postseason playoff berth for first-year head coach Danny Rocco.

Kern was one of 13 CAA players honored Tuesday by STATS. Joining Kern were first team picks Josh Mack of Maine (RB), Cal Daniels of Stony Brook (FB), Aaron Stinnie (OL) and Andrew Ankrah (DL) of James Madison; second team selections Neil O’Connor (WR) of New Hampshire, Jamil Demby of Maine (OL), Timon Parris (OL) of Stony Brook, Warren Messer (LB) of Elon, Raven Greene (DB) of James Madision; and third team selections Kyle Lauletta (QB) and Andrew Clyde (DL) of Richmond, and Rashad Robinson (DB) of James Madison.
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Dynamic Group of Defensive Standouts Highlight 2018 Delaware Football Recruiting Class
By Delaware Athletics
Dec 20, 2017

NEWARK, Del. -- University of Delaware football head coach Danny Rocco announced his second recruiting class during the early signing period on Wednesday as 14 high school standouts signed the NCAA National Letter of Intent to attend Delaware on scholarship and join the Blue Hens football family next fall.

Rocco introduced a recruiting class that includes seven linebackers, two offensive linemen, two cornerbacks, one defensive linemen, one wide receiver, and one quarterback. The class included student-athletes from five nearby states, including eight from Pennsylvania, two from Maryland, two from New Jersey, one from Delaware, and one from Virginia. Additional high school standouts are expected to sign during the late signing period in February.

This year’s recruiting class was heavy on the defensive side of the ball, particularly at the linebacker position where versatility is the hallmark of the group. Five of the 14 signees attended camp at Delaware this past summer.

“I am a fan of the early signing period,” said Rocco of the new system that now allows recruits to sign during a three-day early period in December. “We were able to secure the vast majority of our class now instead of having to wait through the month of January. We signed 11 recruits who live within a three to three-and-a-half hour radius and I am very appreciative of that fact. We can do a lot within our state and within our region. We set out to get a better balance in our roster as well. It was really important for us to work back to a balance, which is why we have a higher number of defensive players in this class. We have a number of linebackers coming in who are versatile and can give us a lot of flexibility in our 3-4 defense. We focused hard on bringing in guys who can play different positions on defense.”

Delaware lost 18 seniors from Rocco’s first team that went 7-4 and narrowly missed an NCAA Tournament berth this past fall. The Blue Hens will begin spring drills in April leading up to the annual Blue-White Spring Game tentatively set for Saturday, May 5 at Delaware Stadium. Delaware will host six games at Delaware Stadium this fall, including matchups vs. Rhode Island (Aug. 30), Lafayette (Sept. 8), Cornell (Sept. 15), Elon (Oct. 13), Towson (Oct. 27), and Villanova (Nov. 17). The schedule will include four teams that advanced to the NCAA Tournament this past season, including a road game on Sept. 22 at national finalist North Dakota State.

Season tickets for 2018 Delaware Football will go on sale in January. Current season tickets members will receive renewal forms shortly after the new year. Those fans interested in becoming a new season ticket member can go online to www.bluehens.com and click on tickets for more information.

Game times and dates for annual events, including Homecoming and Parents & Family Weekend, will be announced in the spring.

Below are biographies of the recruits:

STEVON BROWN • 6-3 • 230 • Offensive Line • Glen Burnie, Md. (Archbishop Curley HS)
High School:  Projected to play guard at Delaware • standout lineman at Archbishop Curley High School for coaches Sean Murphy and Sean Sandora • two-time All-Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association selection as an offensive lineman • named to the 2017 Baltimore Touchdown Club Super 22 Team • team captain as a senior • also played basketball and was a member of the track & field team • honor roll student.

Personal: Stevon Jemar Brown • born Jan. 11, 2000 • son of Leshondra D. Gulley • cousin, Demond Brown, was a standout slotback for the Navy football team in 2012-15 • plans to major in physical therapy • favorite NFL team is the Pittsburgh Steelers.

JOHNNY BUCHANAN • 6-0 • 215 • Linebacker • Brick, N.J. (St. John Vianney)
High School: Standout linebacker and running back at St. John Vianney High School for head coach Derek Sinisky • played freshman football at Brick Township High School before moving to St. John Vianney • led SJV to three-year record of 31-3 with three straight conference titles • two-year captain and team Most Valuable Player • earned All-State honors as both a junior (2nd team) and senior (1st team) and was also a two-time conference Defensive Player of the Year and two-time all-division selection • All-Metro as a senior • had 130 tackles, four sacks, and an interception on defense and rushed for 1,400 yards and 17 touchdowns as a senior • had 145 tackles, three interceptions, and rushed for 500 yards and 13 touchdown as a junior in 2016 • honor roll student • member of Catholic Athletes for Christ .

Personal: Johnny Christian Buchanan • born July 25, 1999 • son of John and Melody Buchanan • oldest of four children • plans to major in business or sports medicine at Delaware • father played football at Rutgers • great uncle, Joe Auer, played in the NFL with the Miami Dolphins • cousin, Collin Olsen, currently plays running back at Florida International • active volunteer at a veteran’s home in his area • favorite NFL team is the Washington Redskins.

AUSTIN HAVERSTROM • 5-11 • 170 • Wide Receiver • Keswick, Va. (Monticello HS)
High School: Standout in football and lacrosse at Monticello High School • served as captain for both teams • three-year starter at wide receiver, cornerback, and kick returner in football for head coach Jeff Lloyd • second team All-State selection as a wide receiver as a senior in 2017 • all-region as a wide receiver and all-district as a receiver, kick returner, and cornerback in 2017 • All-Central Virginia and All-Jefferson District as a junior and all-conference punt returner as a sophomore • as a senior, averaged 18.4 yards per catch (589 total yards) and scored six touchdowns, intercepted two passes, and averaged 38.5 yards on kick returns with two touchdowns • as a junior, had 962 all-purpose yards, averaged 15.8 yards per reception, and scored six touchdowns while adding 33 tackles and two interceptions • as a sophomore, had 542 all-purpose yards to go with 24 tackles and two interceptions • three-year starter as a midfielder and faceoff specialist in lacrosse for coach Tucker Tapscott • had 55 goals, 72 assists, 313 groundballs, and won over 70 percent of his faceoffs for his career • member of the jazz band.

Personal: Austin Kenneth Haverstrom • born Sept. 3, 1999 • son of Richard and Lois Haverstrom • mother is a lawyer who earned her law degree from Villanova • takes inspiration from his younger brother, Troy, who has cerebral palsy • grandfather, Kevin Haverstrom, played college baseball at Manhattan College • enjoys making music in his spare time • favorite NFL team is the New York Giants.

JUSTIS HENLEY • 5-11 • 165 • Cornerback • North Wales, Pa. (North Penn HS)
High School: Three-year starter at cornerback and wide receiver at Philadelphia suburban power North Penn High School for head coach Dick Beck • led team to three-year record of 35-7 and three conference championships • team went 14-1 and won the district title in 2016 • served as team captain as a senior • two-time All-State, all-area, and all-conference selection at cornerback • nominated for the Mini-Maxwell Player of the Year Award • tallied 1,016 receiving yards, scored eight touchdowns, and intercepted eight passes as a junior in 2016 and had 917 receiving yards, 16 touchdowns, and eight interceptions as a senior in 2017 • honor roll student every year.

Personal: Justis Ty Henley • born Jan. 2, 2000 in Philadelphia • son of Keith and Marcetas Henley • one of five children, including a pair of older twins • plans to major in business and minor in journalism • aspires to become a sports broadcaster • enjoys playing basketball in his spare time • favorite NFL teams are the Philadelphia Eagles and Cleveland Browns.

JORDAN MORRIS • 6-2 • 280 • Defensive Line • Burlington, N.J. (The Hun School)
High School: Two-year standout defensive tackle at The Hun School in Princeton, N.J. for head coach Todd Smith • enjoyed an outstanding post-graduate season in 2017 as the team went 8-1 in 2017 and was ranked No. 5 in the state among prep schools • team captain • selected as the Times of Trenton All-Area Prep Player of the Year and Prep Lineman of the Year • named first team All-MAPL • recorded 39 tackles, eight tackles for loss, and five sacks as a junior in 2016 when he earned all-area honors • team went 8-0 in 2016.

Personal: Jordan Thomas Morris • nickname is “Juicy” • born Aug. 12, 1999 • son of Jerry and Sylvia Morris • one of four children • enjoys fishing, dancing, and boxing in his spare time • favorite NFL team is the Philadelphia Eagles.

ROBERT NACHTMAN • 6-3 • 290 • Offensive Lineman • Pennsylvania Furnace, Pa. (State College Area HS)
High School: Three-year letterwinner and two-year starter on offensive line at State College Area High School for head coach Matt Lintal • led teams to three-year record of 29-8, including a 10-3 mark in 2017 when team was district runner-up • served as team captain as a senior in 2017 • earned 6A first team All-State honors as a senior • two-time All-Mid Penn Conference selection • nominated for Mr. Pennsylvania Player of the Year award • averaged seven “pancake” blocks per game as a senior • high honor roll student throughout career • earned team’s Stephen J. Suhey Memorial Award for demonstrating excellence in Ability, Sportsmanship, Self-Discipline, Determination and Loyalty • will enroll at Delaware for the spring semester and take part in spring drills.

Personal: Robert Michael Nachtman (“nakt-man”) • born Dec. 21, 1999 • son of Jim and Tina Nachtman • youngest of three children • both parents are graduates of Penn State • father is the assistant athletic director for media and video production at Penn State University • mother is a nurse • plans to major in biology with a minor in psychology • would like to become a physical therapist • favorite NFL teams are the New York Giants and Miami Dolphins.

DREW NICKLES • 6-3 • 235 • Outside Linebacker • Upper Black Eddy, Pa. (Palisades HS)
High School: Projected to play outside linebacker at Delaware • four-year starter at tight end and three-year starter at linebacker at Palisades High School for head coach Kevin Ronalds • led team to 14-1 record, the district title, and a berth in the state quarterfinals as a senior in 2017 • team went 8-4 and advanced to the district playoffs in 2016 • started 49 career games • earned first team 3A All-State honors in 2017 • three-time all-league tight end and two-time all-league on defense • two-time Morning Call and Easton Express All-Area selection • two-time team captain • named team’s Defensive Player of the Year three times • caught 19 passes for 391 yards and six touchdowns and added 64 tackles (21 TFL), 15 sacks, two caused fumbles, and two blocked punts in 2017 • had 12 catches for 194 yards and two touchdowns and added 67 tackles (18 TFL), 10 sacks, and four caused fumbles • 2016 NFF Scholar-Athlete • member of the Key Club and German Club and an honor roll student all four years.

Personal: Andrew Aaron “Drew” Nickles • born Nov. 30, 1999 in Mineola, N.Y. • son of Aaron and Beth Nickles • plans to major in business at Delaware • enjoys playing basketball, camping, fishing, and boating in his spare time • favorite NFL team is the New York Giants.

MATT PALMER • 6-0 • 192 • Linebacker • Doylestown, Pa. (Archbishop Wood HS)
High School: Standout linebacker at Archbishop Wood High School for head coach Steve Devlin • led team to a combined record of 34-5 over his final three seasons • team went 12-2 and won the state 5A title in 2017, went 11-2 and won the state 5A title in 2016, and posted a 11-1 record and advanced to the state playoffs in 2015 • earned first team All-State 5A honors as both a junior and senior • two-time All-Catholic League selection.

Personal: Matthew B. “Matt” Palmer • born Dec. 10, 1999 • son of Gary and Karen Palmer • has not decided on a major at Delaware.

ANTHONY PAOLETTI • 6-2 • 195 • Quarterback • Broomall, Pa. (Marple-Newtown HS)
High School: Three-year standout at quarterback at Marple-Newtown High School for head coach Chris Gicking • one of the top quarterbacks in Delaware County history • two-time team captain • earned first team All-State honors as a senior in 2017 and second team All-State honors in 2016 • two-time All-Delaware Country and All-Central League selection • led team to three-year record of 28-9 and state playoff appearances in 2015 and 2016 • Delaware County’s all-time leading passer with 7,048 yards and 73 touchdowns • threw for 1,883 yards and 15 touchdowns as a sophomore, 2,793 yards and 33 touchdowns as a junior, and 2,372 yards and 25 touchdowns as a senior • also played basketball for head coach Sean Spratt • four-year honor roll student • earned Delaware County Scholar-Athlete Award and congressional district scholar-athlete award • student ambassador.

Personal: Anthony Albert Paoletti (“pay-oh-letti”) • born Aug. 24, 1999 • son of Anthony and Suzanne Paoletti • second of four children • mother is a nurse • plans to major in business with an emphasis in finance at Delaware • aspires to a career in business or real estate • enjoys playing basketball and weightlifting in his spare time • favorite NFL team is the Philadelphia Eagles.

NOAH PLACK • 6-2 • 206 • Outside Linebacker/Defensive Back • Bridgeville, Pa. (South Fayette HS)
High School: Four-year standout and two-year starter as a tight end and linebacker at South Fayette High School for head coach Joe Rossi • two-time All-State selection, earning first team honors at tight end in 2017 and second team honors at tight end in 2016 • three-time all-conference selection • team captain as a senior • team’s defensive Player of the Year in 2017 • caught 52 passes for 935 yards and 13 touchdowns and recorded 75 tackles, 11 tackles for loss, and six sacks in 2017 • caught 35 passes for 679 yards and 10 touchdowns and posted 54 tackles, five TFL, and two sacks in 2016 • had 48 tackles, two sacks, and two interceptions as a sophomore in 2015 • also played forward in basketball for head coach David Mislan • honor roll student.

Personal: Noah Thomas Plack • born June 8, 2000 • son of Ken and Suzanne Tallerico • mother is a teacher and father works in sales • has a younger brother and a younger sister • plans to major in exercise science at Delaware • would like to pursue a career in physical therapy • favorite NFL team is the Pittsburgh Steelers.

AMONTE STROTHERS • 6-2 • 180 • Cornerback • Homestead, Pa. (Steel Valley HS)
High School: Three-year standout defensive back and wide receiver at Steel Valley High School for head coach Rodney Steele • led team to a three-year record of 36-3 • team went 15-0 and won the Pennsylvania state AA title in 2016 and posted an 11-1 record and advanced to the state quarterfinals in 2017 • earned second team All-State honors by Pennsylvania Football News in 2016 • selected to the Pittsburgh Tribune WPIAL All-Star team as a senior • two-time all-conference selection.

Personal: Amonté R. Strothers • born May 8, 1999 • son of Michael and Latrice Strothers • has not decided on a major at Delaware.

ANTHONY TORO • 6-3 • 230 • Linebacker • Edgewater, Md. (DeMatha Catholic HS)
High School: Three-year starting linebacker and tight end at DeMatha Catholic High School for head coach Elijah Brooker • continues long line of outstanding UD recruits from DeMatha • served as team captain as a senior • team went 12-0 and won conference title in 2016, went 11-1 and won conference championship in 2015, and posted a 6-5 mark and advanced to conference playoffs in 2017 • after earning third team All-Washington Catholic Athletic Conference honors as a sophomore earned first team All-WCAC honors as both a junior and senior • caught 11 passes for 193 yards and three touchdowns as a senior • also played basketball and lacrosse • Dean’s List and honor roll student.

Personal: Anthony E. Toro • born Jan. 12, 2000 • son of Shawn and Jennifer Toro • youngest of two children • has not declared a major but plans to earn a master’s degree after undergraduate work • enjoys fishing and playing lacrosse in his spare time • favorite NFL team is the Washington Redskins.

LIAM TRAINER • 6-2 • 225 • Inside Linebacker • Glenside, Pa. (La Salle College HS)
High School: Three-year standout at linebacker and tight end at La Salle College High School for head coach Jack Steinmetz • led team to a three-year record of 23-13 • team went 9-4 and advanced to the state AAAA quarterfinals in 2015 • earned first team All-Catholic League honors at linebacker as both a junior and senior.

Personal: Liam Charles Trainer • born Jan. 16, 2000 • son of Joe and Moreen Trainer • oldest of three children • father, Joe, is the defensive coordinator and linebackers coach for Delaware’s Colonial Athletic Association rival Villanova • Joe served as head coach at CAA foe Rhode Island in 2009-13 and at NCAA II Millersville in 2005-07.

KEDRICK WHITEHEAD • 5-11 • 190 • Outside Linebacker/Defensive Back • Middletown, Del. (Middletown HS)
High School: Projected to play either outside linebacker or safety at Delaware • standout at linebacker, safety, and running back at Delaware state power Middletown High School for head coaches Mark DelPercio and Zach Blum (2017) • served as captain as a senior • four-year starter at linebacker and running back • led team to four-year mark of 41-8 • led team to state tournament all four years. • team fell in the championship final in 2014, 2016, and 2017 • two-time All-State selection at linebacker (first team in 2017) and running back • three-time all-conference selection at linebacker • rushed for 1,314 yards and 18 touchdowns and collected 71 tackles, four sacks, and two interceptions in 2016 • will enroll at Delaware for the spring semester and take part in spring drills.

Personal: Kedrick Charles Lamar Whitehead • born Nov. 20, 1999 • son of Jamina Whitehead • has an older sister • plans to major in sport management at Delaware • enjoys playing video games and reading in his spare time • favorite NFL team is the Pittsburgh Steelers.

DELAWARE FOOTBALL CLASS OF 2018:
Stevon Brown Offensive Line 6-3 230 Archbishop Curley Glen Burnie, Md.
Johnny Buchanan Linebacker 6-0 215 St. John Vianney Brick, N.J. 
Austin Haverstrom Wide Receiver 5-11 170 Monticello Keswick, Va.
Justis Henley Cornerback 5-11 165 North Penn North Wales, Pa.
Jordan Morris Defensive Line 6-2 280 The Hun School Burlington, N.J.
Robert Nachtman Offensive Line 6-3 290 State College Area Pennsylvania Furnace, Pa.
Drew Nickles Outside Linebacker 6-3 235 Palisades Upper Black Eddy, Pa.
Matt Palmer Linebacker 6-0 192 Archbishop Wood Doylestown, Pa.
Anthony Paoletti Quarterback 6-2 195 Marple-Newtown Broomall, Pa.
Noah Plack Outside Linebacker/Def. Back 6-2 206 South Fayette Bridgeville, Pa.
Amonté Strothers Cornerback 6-2 180 Steel Valley Homestead, Pa.
Anthony Toro Linebacker 6-3 230 DeMatha Catholic Edgewater, Md. 
Liam Trainer Inside Linebacker 6-2 225 La Salle College HS Glenside, Pa. 
Kedrick Whitehead Outside Linebacker/Def. Back 5-11 190 Middletown Middletown, Del.
Stevon Brown OL | 6-3 | 270 Archbishop Curley HS Glen Burnie, Md.
Johnny Buchanan LB | 6-0 | 215 St. John Vianney HS Brick, N.J.
Austin Haverstrom WR | 5-11 | 170 Monticello HS Keswick, Va.
Justis Henley CB | 5-11 | 165 North Penn HS North Wales, Pa. 
Jordan Morris DL | 6-2 | 280 The Hun School Burlington, N.J.
Robert Nachtman OL | 6-3 | 290 State College Area Pennsylvania Furnace, Pa. 
Drew Nickles OLB | 6-3 | 235 Palisades HS Upper Black Eddy, Pa. 
Matt Palmer ILB/OLB | 6-0 | 192 Archbishop Wood HS Doylestown, Pa. 
Anthony Paoletti QB | 6-2 | 195 Marple-Newtown HS Broomall, Pa. 
Noah Plack OLB/DB | 6-2 | 206 South Fayette HS Bridgeville, Pa. 
Amonté Strothers CB | 6-2 | 230 Steel Valley HS Homestead, Pa. 
Anthony Toro ILB/OLB | 6-3 | 180 DeMatha Catholic HS Edgewater, Md.
Liam Trainer ILB | 6-2 | 225 La Salle HS Glenside, Pa.
Kedrick Whitehead OLB/DB | 5-11 | 190 Middletown HS Middletown, Del. 
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Memorial Service for Delaware Hall of Fame Coach Tubby Raymond Set for Jan. 12 at The Bob
By Delaware Athletics
Dec 15, 2017

NEWARK, Del. – A memorial service to celebrate the life of University of Delaware Hall of Fame football head coach Harold R. “Tubby” Raymond will be held on Friday, Jan. 12, 2018, at the Bob Carpenter Center.

The event will begin at 1 p.m. and is open to the public.

Raymond, one of the nation’s most successful college football coaches, passed away at the age of 92 on Dec. 8 following a brief illness.

He enjoyed a stellar 36-year career as head coach at Delaware (1966-2001) and led the Blue Hens to an impressive record of 300-119-3, three national titles, 16 NCAA playoff appearances, 14 Lambert Cup trophies, nine ECAC Team of the Year awards, and nine conference titles.

Raymond was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2003 and was also a member of the University of Delaware Athletics Hall of Fame (2002), the state of Delaware Sports Hall of Fame (1993), the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Hall of Fame (2017), and the Flint, Michigan Hall of Fame (1983).

MEDIA INFORMATION: Contact Scott Selheimer | selheime@udel.edu | Office: 302-831-8007 | Cell: 302-562-5129

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Blue Hens’ legendary coach Tubby Raymond dies
Dec 8th, 2017 · by Delaware State News 

NEWARK — Legendary University of Delaware football coach Harold R. “Tubby” Raymond, who led the Blue Hens to three national championships and 300 wins, had died. He was 92.

Coach Raymond retired after the 2001 season.

At a retirement press conference, Coach Raymond said, “This was a very difficult decision for me. I’ve coached football for 52 years and to suddenly remove that from your life is a very emotional thing.”

He compiled a 300-119-3 record over 36 seasons with his famous Wing-T offense.

Coach Raymond is just one of 13 college coaches to reach the 300-win mark and became the Hens’ third consecutive College Football Hall of Fame coach, following in the footsteps of Dave Nelson and Bill Murray.

“Tubby Raymond is a college football icon,” said then-university athletic director Edgar Johnson at the retirement press conference. “His contributions to our university, to our athletics program, to the hundreds of young men whose lives he has impacted and to the sport of football are unrivaled.

“Those contributions will stand for all time as a testament to his commitment to the University of Delaware and to the values we hold most dear – integrity, loyalty and tradition.”

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Delaware Mourns Passing of Football Coaching Icon Tubby Raymond
By Delaware Athletics
Dec 8, 2017

NEWARK, Del. – Harold R. “Tubby” Raymond, one of the most successful coaches in the history of college football during a nearly 50-year career at the University of Delaware, and an icon throughout the state of Delaware and beyond, passed away Friday after a brief illness.

Raymond, who won 300 games and three national championships at UD and was one of the innovators of the famous Wing-T offense, had celebrated his 92nd birthday on Nov. 14.

“We pass along our deepest sympathies to the Raymond Family and everyone who loves Delaware Football,” said UD Director of Athletics and Recreation Services Chrissi Rawak, who was a fellow University of Michigan graduate. “Coach Raymond was a true icon and his legacy lives on among all Blue Hens. We certainly remember all the great accomplishments that Coach Raymond provided Delaware fans over the years, but more importantly we celebrate the impact he had on the lives of so many student-athletes.”

“On behalf of the entire University of Delaware community, we offer our deepest condolences to the family and friends of Harold R. ‘Tubby’ Raymond, whose legend and legacy have touched generations of Blue Hens,” said UD President Dennis Assanis. “Tubby was a great leader, a wise mentor and a generous contributor to his community. Possibly more than any other coach, Tubby helped shape UD Athletics into the excellent program it is today, one that reflects his dedication to teamwork, focus and achievement both on and off the field. We celebrate his lifetime of accomplishment and his abiding commitment to the University. He was a true Blue Hen, and he will be missed.”

A native of Flint, Mich., Raymond played football and baseball at the University of Michigan, began his coaching career right out of college, and came to Delaware in 1954 as head baseball coach and assistant football coach under the legendary David Nelson.

Raymond was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2003 and was also a member of the University of Delaware Athletics Hall of Fame (2002), the state of Delaware Sports Hall of Fame (1993), the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Hall of Fame (2017), and the Flint, Michigan Hall of Fame (1983).

After serving as an assistant coach for 12 years under fellow College Football Hall of Famer Nelson, Raymond took over the reigns of the Blue Hens in 1966 and went on to record one of the greatest coaching careers in college football history.

He enjoyed a stellar 36-year career that saw him lead the Blue Hens to an impressive record of 300-119-3, three national titles, 16 NCAA playoff appearances, 14 Lambert Cup trophies, nine ECAC Team of the Year awards, and nine conference titles. An incredible 31 of his 36 teams had winning records and 11 won 10 or more games.

Raymond earned his 300th victory with a win over Richmond Nov. 10, 2001, making him just the ninth coach in college history to reach that milestone and only the fourth to accomplish the feat at one school at the time.

He coached 15 National Football League draft picks, including four-time Pro Bowl quarterback and 2002 NFL Most Valuable Player Rich Gannon, and 34 first team All-Americans and led his teams to small college national titles in 1971, 1972, and 1979.

The Blue Hens were also national runner-up two other times during his tenure. He was named national coach of the year four times, regional coach of the year seven times, and was named Atlantic 10/Yankee Conference Coach of the Year in 1991.

The team success brought Raymond numerous honors, including the distinction of being just one of two college division coaches to win consecutive American Football Coaches Association Coach of the Year awards. Raymond was cited in 1971 and 1972, when he coached Delaware to back-to-back national titles. In 1979, after winning the NCAA Division II national championship, ABC Sports and Chevrolet named Raymond the NCAA Division II Coach of the Year

On the district level, Raymond was named AFCA College Division District II (now NCAA I-AA Region I) Coach of the Year seven times, including the 1995 season, and the New York Football Writers Association ECAC Division I-AA Coach of the Year twice, including the 1992 campaign.

Raymond came to Delaware from the University of Maine in 1954 and served as Nelson's backfield coach for 12 years before Nelson, who died in 1991, resigned to devote full-time to his athletic director duties.

Called "Tubby" by his childhood playmates, Raymond lost the weight but not the nickname. A native of Flint, Mich., and a 1950 graduate of the University of Michigan, Raymond played football and baseball for the Wolverines and captained the 1949 baseball team.

He played minor league professional baseball for two years and was head football coach at University High School in Ann Arbor, Mich., before heading to the University of Maine.

He served as Blue Hen baseball coach for nine years and compiled the second best coaching record in the history of the sport at UD with a mark of 141-56. Six of Raymond's nine baseball teams qualified for the NCAA District II playoffs.

Raymond's main outside interests included golf and painting. His acrylic paintings of Blue Hen players brought him national media attention, including features in Sports Illustrated and on ABC's “Good Morning America,” NBC’s “Nightly News,’ CNN, and Fox Sports. Beginning in the 1950’s, he painted a portrait of a senior member of the team each week during the season for most of his career at Delaware and continued the tradition in 2002 after his retirement until this year.

In addition to his football duties at Delaware, Raymond was a past president of the American Football Coaches Association and is currently chairman of the AFCA Rules Committee.

Raymond resided in Landenberg, Pa. with his wife Diane and had four children, 11 grandchildren, and 13 great grandchildren. His first wife, Susan, passed away in 1990. His youngest son, Dave, earned worldwide fame as the original Phillie Phanatic costume, one of the most recognizable mascots in professional sports.

Funeral arrangements are pending. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that contributions be made to the Tubby Raymond Foundation, which is part of the Delaware Community Foundation (www.delcf.org/donations/tubby-raymond-foundation-fund).

COACHING HIGHLIGHTS

• 300-119-3 career record (1966-2001)
• Three national titles (1971, 1972 and 1979)
• Three national runner-up finishes (1974, 1978, 1982)
• 14 Lambert Cups (Eastern football champions) (
• 11 NCAA Division I-AA tournament (now FCS) appearances (1981, 1982, 1986, 1988, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1995, 1996,1997, 2000)
• Nine conference titles
• Four Boardwalk Bowl victories
• Nine ECAC Team of the Year Awards

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Former University of Delaware Head Coach Tubby Raymond dies at 92
WDEL
Sean Greene & Don Voltz Published Dec 8, 2017 at 3:36 pm 

Former University of Delaware Head Football Coach Harold R. "Tubby" Raymond died Friday at the age of 92.

Raymond spent 36 years as the Head Football Coach of the Blue Hens, becoming just the 11th coach in college football history to win 300 games. At that point, he was just the 4th leader to accomplish the milestone at one school.

He guided Delaware to 3 national championships (1971, 1972, and 1979) and 16 NCAA playoff appearances, the last of which came in 2000, the year before he retired.

Raymond was a native of Flint, Michigan and went to the University of Michigan.

Raymond came to Newark in 1952, and served as assistant football coach for 12 seasons, 9 of which he also served as Delaware's Head Baseball Coach, winning 142 games and reaching the NCAA Tournament four times.

"Tubby" become synonymous with the "Wing-T" style of option offense, which cherished misdirection to help boost the skills of his sometimes undersized team.

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DELAWARE ALL ECAC PLAYER AWARDS FOR 2017:

By Delaware Athletics Dec 7, 2017

DANBURY, Conn. – Impressive postseason honors continued for the University of Delaware football team on Thursday as three Blue Hens were honored by the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) for their outstanding play during the 2017 season.

Redshirt freshman linebacker Colby Reeder was selected as the ECAC Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) Defensive Rookie of the Year while junior safety Nasir Adderley was named first team All-East and senior defensive tackle Bilal Nicholswas honored as a second team All-East selection.

The teams were selected by a vote of ECAC member head coaches and nominations were open to conference first team selections in the Colonial Athletic Association, Ivy League, Patriot League, Northeast Conference, and Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference.

Reeder, who last month was named the CAA Defensive Rookie of the Year, becomes the ninth UD player to earn All-East Rookie of the Year notice and first since linebacker Jeff Williams in 2012.

A native of nearby Hockessin, Del. (Salesianum High School), Reeder started all 11 games at outside linebacker and recorded 49 tackles in 2017, the seventh highest total on the team. He led the team with eight tackles for loss and also had two sacks, two interceptions, two pass breakups, and two fumble recoveries. He was also one of the team’s top special teams contributors.

Adderley, a native of Philadelphia, Pa. (Great Valley HS), led a defensive secondary that ranked among the best in the CAA, ranking No. 2 in the league in passing efficiency defense and No. 3 in pass defense.

He was the team’s second leading tackler with 78 stops, including a team-high 42 solo tackles, and ranked No. 2 in the CAA with five interceptions. He had 10 or more tackles three times, including a career-high 14 vs. Maine. He also contributed four tackles for loss, three pass breakups, and two forced fumbles, and was one of the team’s mainstays on special teams.

Nichols, a co-captain from Newark, Del. (Hodgson HS) and a three-time All-CAA selection, ranked fourth on the team and was first among down linemen with 56 tackles (24 solo) this season. He also recorded 5.5 sacks, 6.5 tackles for loss, four pass breakups, and one interception, and paced a unit that ranked No. 3 in the CAA in scoring defense (16.8 points per game) and total defense (305.5 yards per game). A pro prospect, he has been selected to compete in the East-West Shrine All-Star Game on Jan. 20 at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. at 3 p.m.

Delaware recently completed an outstanding season under first-year head coach Danny Rocco. The Blue Hens registered a 7-4 overall record during the 2017 campaign, the most wins for Delaware since the 2013 season.

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Delaware Nose Tackle Bilal Nichols Earns Invite to East-West Shrine All-Star Game
By Delaware Athletics
Dec 1, 2017

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- University of Delaware senior nose tackle Bilal Nichols, who recently finished off an outstanding football career with the Blue Hens as a three-time all-conference selection in football, has been selected to take part in the 93rd East-West Shrine Bowl all-star game.

Nichols, a 6-4, 290 lb. native of Newark, Del. (Hodgson Vo-Tech High School), will take part in one of the most prestigious post-season all-star games in college football.

The game will be played on Jan. 20, 2018 at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. at 3 p.m. The game will be televised live on NFL Network and broadcast live on the East-West Shrine Game Radio Network.

Nichols will become the sixth Blue Hen football standout to appear in the game, joining defensive tackle Dennis Johnson (1972), cornerback Sidney Haugabrook (2004), tight end Ben Patrick (2006), quarterback Pat Devlin (2010), and defensive tackle Zach Kerr (2013). Kerr is now a member of the NFL’s Denver Broncos.

A four-year standout, Nichols played in 44 career games with 21 starts and recorded 104 tackles (50 solo), 10.5 sacks, 16.5 tackles for loss, three forced fumbles, two interceptions, and 10 pass breakups.

After earning third team All-Colonial Athletic Association honors as a sophomore in 2015, he earned second team honors in 2016, and first team recognition this season when he recorded 56 tackles, including 5.5 sacks, and intercepted a pass.

Nichols joins an elite list of football greats, such as Tom Brady, John Elway, Brett Favre, and 74 NFL Hall of Famers, who have played in the East-West Shrine Game, in addition to more than 265 East-West Shrine Game alumni on NFL rosters each year. A strong performance at the East-West Shrine Game can greatly impact a player’s chances of a career in the NFL.

More than 100 players from last year’s game signed with professional teams this spring, and more than 70 made final NFL rosters.

"The most important element of East-West Shrine Game has always been supporting Shriners Hospitals for Children," said East-West Shrine Game Executive Director Harold Richardson. "But during game week, it also affords our players an unmatched opportunity to showcase their talents and get their first taste of a potential career in the NFL."

While the teams are divided by East and West, the players come together for the beneficiary of the event, Shriners Hospitals for Children®, an international pediatric specialty health care system that treats children in orthopaedics, spinal cord injuries, cleft lift and palate, and burns, regardless of the families’ ability to pay.

East-West Shrine Game tickets will be available for purchase beginning December 1 through all tickets.com outlets. Game tickets are $15 general admission seating.


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Rocco doesn’t buy Hens’ playoff snub
Nov 21st, 2017 · by Andy Walter · DELAWARE STATE NEWS

NEWARK — Twenty-four hours after his Delaware football team had its season ended by the NCAA FCS Division I playoff committee, coach Danny Rocco still wasn’t buying the decision.

His ire was caused by the committee choosing New Hampshire over the Blue Hens for an at-large berth in the 24-team bracket.

Both teams finished 7-4. Both teams suffered bad losses in their season finales — while Delaware fell to Villanova, 28-7, the Wildcats lost to Albany, 15-0.

But, among other things, Rocco said that every poll/ranking had the Hens above UNH.

In the final SRS rankings (Simple Ratings System), the Hens were No. 21 while the Wildcats were No. 31. Rocco said there’s only one other case this year when a lower-ranked team got in the playoffs over a higher-ranked team — and that was when the lower squad beat the higher one head-to-head.

The Wildcats were the fourth team taken from the Colonial Athletic Association.

“We were without a doubt the fourth team in our league,” Rocco said at his season-ending press lunch on Monday. “Without a doubt. There was no statistical data that would have supported a thought that there was a fourth team more worthy. I really have struggled with that.

“To me it’s not a whole lot different than the BCS. Could you imagine if they came out with those rankings, one through 25, and all of a sudden they decide not to take three and four? We’re going to take one, two, five and nine. Well based on what?”

Rocco certainly isn’t going for the argument that UNH should get in based on its early-season 22-12 win over Georgia Southern just because the Eagles are now an FBS program. Georgia Southern is also currently 1-9.

That argument didn’t hold any sway in 2016 when another 7-4 Wildcat team got in the playoffs over Albany, which was 7-4 and posted a victory over FBS Buffalo — not to mention, beat UNH late in the season.

The fact that New Hampshire athletic director Marty Scarano is the CAA’s representative on the NCAA playoff committee doesn’t make the situation look any better. This is his last year on the committee as part of a rotating schedule.

The Wildcats have made the FCS playoffs for 14 years in a row.

“That’s the beauty of the SRS,” said Rocco. “It includes all the different matrices that take the human element out. Strength of schedule is included, home and away is included.

“There’s obviously reason for discussion within committee. I respect the job and the responsibility that they have. But if you really dive deep — and I did — it’s kind of alarming, to be honest with you.”

Rocco said there have been six times in his head coaching career that he’s gotten his team together to watch the playoff selection only to be left out.

That didn’t make Sunday any easier for Rocco, who has also been the head coach at Liberty and Richmond.

“That is one of the more painful things that you do — I think — in sports,” said the 12th-year head coach. “It’s not death and dying but it certainly is pain and misery as you try to offer your student-athletes those experiences.”

Headed in the right direction

The tough ending notwithstanding, Rocco’s first season at Delaware was clearly an improvement over the last few.

The Hens’ seven victories were their most since 2012 and were three better than in Delaware’s back-to-back 4-7 campaigns.

“We came here to do something extraordinary with our program,” Rocco said on Monday. “I think we took a step forward and we certainly remain on track. I think any time you are 7-4 coming out of this league, you’ve had a really good season. We are really very excited about our future.

Sussex Tech High grad Kani Kane emerged as the Blue Hens’ leading rusher this fall after only transferring to UD over the summer. (Delaware sports information/Mark Campbell_

“If we were practicing today (for a playoff game), this would have been a great year,” Rocco added. “And nobody would dispute that.”

That being said, the Hens’ play at quarterback and especially with their passing game remains the biggest question mark for the program.

Out of the 123 teams in FCS, Delaware was 117th in passing yards per game at an average of 124.5.

The Hens will have a pair of senior QBs in Joe Walker and J.P. Caruso as well as a veteran backup in junior Pat Kehoe. To that group, Delaware will add former Smyrna High All-Stater Nolan Henderson, who ran the scout team as a true freshman this fall.

“We’ll need to work toward defining what we want to do offensively a little bit more,” said Rocco. “I think (offensive coordinator) Matt (Simon) did a good job this year managing what we had and where we were. We know we have to get better, he knows we have to get better.

“There’s no doubt we need to be more efficient offensively. Too many three-and-outs, too many punts, too much stress on the defense.”

As for Henderson, Rocco said there’s a lot to like about the 6-foot, 170-pounder, who was the State Offensive Player of the Year in 2016.

“He can catch and throw the ball out of the gun,” said Rocco. “He can make all the throws. He’s quick, he’s athletic. He’s a high-football IQ guy. I believe he will make a legitimate push (for playing time). I think he will make significant improvement.

“We’ve got to get him bigger, we’ve got to get him stronger. … I’ve got to bring him home and feed him some pasta.”

Extra points

Rocco said he was told on Monday that senior linebacker Charles Bell will be granted a medical redshirt and be eligible next fall. He missed most of this season with a back injury. … Rocco on Saturday’s loss to Villanova: “We did not play well. … When it was all said and done, I think my kids were a little tight. I think they were pressing a little more than they needed to. But when you fall behind 14-0, things become more challenging with every possession.” … A pair of players from Sussex County led the Hens in receiving and rushing. Kani Kane (Sussex Tech) had 594 yards and seven touchdowns on 142 carries while Jamie Jarmon (Indian River) had 29 catches for 327 yards and six TDs. He also ran the ball nine times for 155 yards and two TDs. … Of the 30 current head coaches in FCS with at least 12 years as a head coach, Rocco is the only one without a losing season. … … Delaware is slated to return 20 players with starting experience, not counting punters and kickers.

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Blue Hens Place 11 on All-CAA Football Squads; Colby Reeder Named Defensive Rookie of the Year

By Delaware Athletics
Nov 21, 2017

RICHMOND, Va. -- Led by four first team selections, the University of Delaware football squad was well represented on the All-Colonial Athletic Association football teams announced by the league office on Tuesday afternoon.

Delaware, which recently completed an outstanding season under first-year head coach Danny Rocco, had 11 players recognized overall, including redshirt freshman linebacker Colby Reeder, who was selected as the CAA Defensive Rookie of the Year.

The Blue Hens registered a 7-4 overall record during the 2017 campaign, the most wins for Delaware since the 2013 season.

Delaware also went 5-3 in league play to finish tied for fourth overall in the 12-team league. The five league wins was Delaware’s best mark since 2011 and its fourth place finish was the highest since the 2010 team tied for the top spot in the league standings and moved on to the NCAA national championship game.

Earning first team notice for the Blue Hens were senior center Brody Kern, senior defensive tackle Bilal Nichols, junior linebacker Troy Reeder, and junior safety Nasir Adderley.

Kern and Nichols both earned All-CAA honors for the third time in their careers while Reeder and Adderley were repeat selections to the team from 2016.

Named to the second team for Delaware were junior tight end Charles Scarff, senior offensive tackle Jake Trump, junior kicker Frank Raggo, and senior defensive tackles Blaine Woodson.

Third team picks representing Delaware were junior running back Kani Kane and junior punter Nick Pritchard. Woodson was also honored on the All-CAA team for the third time after earning second team honors in both 2015 and 2016.

Colby Reeder becomes the eighth Delaware player to earn conference Rookie of the Year honors and the third in the last four seasons, joining Woodson in 2014 and running back Thomas Jefferson in 2015. Reeder is the fourth Blue Hen to be recognized on the defensive side of the ball.

A native of nearby Hockessin, Del. (Salesianum School), Reeder started all 11 games at outside linebacker and recorded 49 tackles in 2017, the seventh highest total on the team. He led the team with eight tackles for loss and also had two sacks, two interceptions, two pass breakups, and two fumble recoveries. He was also one of the team’s top special teams contributors.

Kern, a co-captain from York, Pa. (West York HS), also earned second team honors in 2016 and third team honors in 2017. He was a four-year standout at center who starter each of his final 39 career games for the Blue Hens. He was the anchor for an offensive line that helped Delaware rank No. 2 in the CAA in fewest sacks allowed (20) and rushing offense (192.5 yards per game).

Nichols, a co-captain from Newark, Del. (Hodgson HS), also earned All-CAA honors in 2015 (third team) and 2016 (second team). He ranked fourth on the team and was first among down linemen with 56 tackles (24 solo) this season. He also recorded 5.5 sacks, 6.5 tackles for loss, four pass breakups, and one interception, and paced a unit that ranked No. 3 in the CAA in scoring defense (16.8 points per game) and total defense (305.5 yards per game).

Reeder, a co-captain from Hockessin, Del. (Salesianum HS) and a second team pick in 2016, guided the middle of the UD defense at inside linebacker and led the team with 89 stops (34 solo) to rank No. 10 in the CAA. A three-time CAA Defensive Player of the Week in his two-year career, Reeder recorded 10 or more tackles three times in 2017 and had a career-high 17 stops in a road win at Maine late in the season. He also had seven tackles for loss and was in on two sacks.

Adderley, a native of Philadelphia, Pa. (Great Valley HS) and a third team selection in 2016, led a defensive secondary that ranked among the best in the CAA, ranking No. 2 in the league in passing efficiency defense and No. 3 in pass defense.

He was the team’s second leading tackler with 78 stops, including a team-high 42 solo tackles, and ranked No. 2 in the CAA with five interceptions. He had 10 or more tackles three times, including a career-high 14 vs. Maine. He also contributed four tackles for loss, three pass breakups, and two forced fumbles, and was one of the team’s mainstays on special teams.

Among the second team selections, Scarff (Lancaster, Pa./Lancaster Catholic) caught 12 passes for 71 yards and ranked second on the team with three touchdown receptions; Trump (Mechanicsburg/Mechanicsburg, Pa.) was a three-year starter at tackle; Raggo (Randolph/Randolph, N.J.) connected on all 28 PATs to extend his three-year streak to 64 straight, was 11 of 15 field goals (making seven of his final nine attempts), and booted two fields goals over 50 yards, including a school-record 55-yarder vs. James Madison; and Woodson (Stroudsburg/ Stroudsburg, Pa.) was No. 5 on the team with 55 tackles and also added three sacks and an interception while starting each of his final 44 games at Delaware.

Among the third team selections, first-year walk-on and transfer Kane (Sussex Tech/Bridgeville, Del.) was Delaware’s leading rusher and ranked No. 4 in the CAA with 594 yards on 142 carries (4.2 avg.) and seven touchdowns; and first-year transfer Pritchard (New Egypt/New Egypt, N.J.) averaged 40.7 yards (No. 4 in the CAA) on 60 punts, had 11 go for 50 or more yards, did not have a kick blocked all season, and tied a UD single season record by having 25 punts land inside the opponent 20-yard line.

Regular season champion and No. 1 ranked James Madison led the way with 15 all-conference selections but Delaware was second and tied with Stony Brook with 11 players honored.

Richmond quarterback Kyle Lauletta was named Offensive Player of the Year; James Madison linebacker Andrew Ankrah was selected as Defensive Player of the Year; James Madison kick returner John Miller was named Special Teams Player of the Year; Elon quarterback Davis Cheek was named Offensive Rookie of the Year; and first-year Elon head coach Curt Cignetti earned the nod as Coach of the Year.

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Hens dominated by rival Villanova 28-7

Nov 18th, 2017 · by Andy Walter · Delaware State News

VILLANOVA, Pa. — This was supposed to be Delaware’s big chance to finally beat rival Villanova again.

And a victory might have even put the Blue Hens back in the NCAA FCS Division I football players for the first time in seven seasons.

But somebody forgot to tell the Wildcats.

It was struggling Villanova that came up with one of its best games of the season while resurgent Delaware never really showed up, falling to the Wildcats, 28-7, on a gloomy, drizzly Saturday afternoon at Villanova Stadium.

In ending the regular season at 5-3 in the Colonial Athletic Association, 7-4 overall, the Hens probably knocked themselves out of an NCAA at-large playoff berth — although their fate won’t be official until the FCS playoff bracket is announced today at 11 a.m.

More immediately, the loss was Delaware’s sixth in a row and 11th in the last 12 meetings with the Wildcats (3-5, 5-6) in the so-called ‘Battle of the Blue.’

“Nothing really went our way today,” said Hens’ coach Danny Rocco. “And I have no problem owning that. We didn’t get a break, didn’t get a bounce, didn’t really make a play until it was too late.

“I expected more. I’m disappointed.”

“I’m disappointed,” senior center Brody Kern said quietly. “Playing here for five years and never beating ‘Nova, is very, very frustrating.

“When it came down to it, I thought they had more energy than us. That plays a big part — especially in this rivalry game. Records are thrown out the window. It’s Villanova and Delaware, it’s always a tough game no matter what our records are.”

Running back Kani Kane and the Hens finished with only 121 rushing yards as a team. (Delaware sports information/Mark Campbell)

The game went south on Delaware from the start of the contest.

After the Hens went three-and-out on theor first possession, Villanova quickly drove 87 yards in just eight plays to grab a 7-0 lead. The backbreaker, though, came three plays later.

That’s when Villanova linebacker Jeff Steeb intercepted a pass across the middle and returned it 38 yards for a touchdown.

Suddenly, a Wildcat squad that had scored a total of just 28 points while losing its last four games owned a 14-0 lead less than eight minutes into the contest.

But Villanova did something pretty similar to start the third quarter. After going 63 yards on only three plays for one TD, another interception set up a fourth touchdown as the Wildcats’ advantage balooned to 28-0 with 7:07 still remaining in the third quarter.

“It’s just the reality of the game of football,” said Rocco. “Sometimes the team that doesn’t have as much on the line plays a little free-er, a little looser, they play up. They may have played one of their best games of the year. We did not.

“We just haven’t been starting well. And we did not start well today. Our ability to overcome that over the several weeks and months is really kind of extraordinary. Just today it was not going to happen.”

“I thought we could have and should have played better,” said junior linebacker Troy Reeder. “It’s disappointing the way it went.”

Even trailing only 14-0 in the second quarter, there some sense of desperation on the Hens’ part.

Delaware put together a 65-yard, 11-play drive just before halftime. On a fourth-and-five at the Villanova 18, The Hens were lined up to try a 35-yard field goal.

Instead, though, the Hens tried a fake, with holder/punter Nick Pritchard lobbing a pass for 6-foot-5 tight end Charles Scarff near the end zone. The Wildcats, however, were ready for the play with two defenders on Scarff to knock away the pass.

“I didn’t feel like we’d score a lot of points today,” Rocco explained. “I just felt that in that moment even a field goal still makes us have to score two touchdowns to take the lead.”

Delaware’s only touchdown came with 59 seconds left in the game, when quarterback J.P. Caruso (21-of-33, 197 yards, 2 interceptions) found receiver Jamie Jarmon on an 11-yard scoring pass. The TD capped off a 13-play, 95-yard march.

That drive also helped skew the final stats. The Hens finished with advantages of 336-322 in total yards and 18-16 in first downs but it didn’t do them any good.

How strongly the NCAA playoff committee wants to consider 7-4 Delaware remains to be seen but Rocco said he wasn’t optimistic.
“I hold little hope,” he said.

Reeder just hopes he and his teammates learn something from Saturday’s experience.

“We haven’t had a whole lot of winning around here as long as I’ve been here and before that,” said Reeder. “I think there’s an element to having to learn how to win that can really only be instilled by winning. I think we got a taste of winning this season.

“Had we won today we would have the amount of wins we had the last two seasons (combined). We beat Richmond, we lost to Towson. We beat Maine, beat Albany, we lose to ‘Nova — two pretty uncharacteristic games. This game probably wouldn’t have meant as much to us had we taken care of business earlier in the year.

“It’s unfortunate that the Towson game wasn’t enough for us to kind of realize not to get a big head and take care of business the same way every week. All I can hope is next season we’re able to do that.”

Extra points

Quarterback Joe Walker ran for a team-high 37 yards on nine carries. He also had three catches for 79 yards … Nose guard Bilal Nichols was ejected from the contest in the third quarter after an official ruled that the senior bumped a referee. … Safety Nasir Adderley had a team-high 12 tackles with senior Blaine Woodson adding 11. … Villanova completed only 5-of-8 passes for 61 yards. Running back Aaron Forbes carried most of the offense, finishing with 140 yards on 13 carries. … Senior receiver Diante Cherry didn’t play in the game.

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Slow Start Trips Up Blue Hens in 28-7 Loss to Villanova in Battle of the Blue
By Delaware Athletics Nov 18, 2017

VILLANOVA, Pa. -- This time, a slow start was just way too much to overcome for the University of Delaware football team.

Delaware, playing longtime rival Villanova in its annual Battle of the Blue rivalry, fell behind 14-0 in the first quarter and could never recover in falling to the Wildcats by a 28-7 verdict at soggy Villanova Stadium Saturday afternoon.

The Blue Hens (7-4, 5-3 Colonial Athletic Association) fell to Villanova for the sixth straight time and for the 11th time in the last 12 seasons. Still, Delaware will hold out slim hopes of earning an at-large spot in the upcoming NCAA Tournament. The 24-team field will be announced live at 11 a.m. on ESPNU.

If Saturday was indeed the final game of the 2017 campaign, it was a year in which the Blue Hens made great strides under first-year head coach Danny Rocco. Delaware nearly equaled the win total from the previous two years and won seven games for the first time since the 2014 season. The five wins in conference play marked the best season for the Hens since 2011 when the team also went 7-4 overall and 5-3 in league play.

The Blue Hens, who finished the regular season having won five of the final seven games, could not generate enough offense to keep up with Villanova, which had struggled offensively itself for most of the season. The Wildcats (5-6, 3-5 CAA) snapped a four-game losing streak.

Delaware fell behind 14-0 after the first quarter and was down 28-0 after Villanova scored twice in the third stanza. Earlier this season, the Hens came back from a 20-7 halftime deficit to Stony Brook, 10-0 to Maine, and 3-0 to Albany before mounting comebacks. This time, the comeback never materialized.

Delaware finished with more first downs (18 to 16) and total yardage (336 to 322) than Villanova but managed just 44 yards in the first quarter and just 116 in the opening half. The Hens were also hurt by two interceptions, including one in the first quarter when Villanova linebacker Jeff Steeb picked off a pass by J.P. Caruso and sprinted into the end zone untouched from 38 yards out to give VU a 14-0 lead six minutes into the game.

Curuso (above left) hit on 21 of 33 passes for a career-high 197 yards and an 11-yard touchdown strike to Jamie Jarmon with 59 seconds left in the game to avoid the shutout. Jarmon caught five passes for 26 yards while Vinny Papale had three catches for 70 yards and Joe Walker hauled in three passes for 79 yards. Walker also had a team-high 37 yards rushing and threw an 18-yard pass.

Defensively, Delaware allowed a season-high 261 yards rushing as Villanova running back Aaron Forbes ran for 140 yards. Quarterback Jack Schetelich threw two touchdown passes to Taurus Phillips and ran for another score.

Blue Hen safety Nasir Adderley led the Hens with 12 tackles and forced a fumble while senior defensive tackle Blaine Woodson made 11 stops, including sack.

HEN SCRATCHINGS
• Rocco, now in his 12th season as a college head coach, has never had a losing season and has won seven or more games 10 times
• Jarmon extended his pass-catching streak to 16 games and secured his team-leading sixth touchdown reception of the year. The six touchdowns is the most by a UD receiver since Michael Johnson had nine and current Baltimore Ravens tight end Nick Boyle had seven in 2013
• Jake Roth is tied for the UD single season record with 23 kickoff touchbacks this season
• Punter Nick Pritchard averaged 40.0 yards on five punts and had three land inside the Villanova 20-yard line. His 25 punts inside the 20-yard line breaks the UD single season record of 24 by All-American Eric Enderson in 2015
• Delaware did not force a turnover for the first time this season. The Hens had intercepted 10 passes over the last five games.
• All four Delaware ball carries had nine rushes on the day. Walker finished with a team-high 37 yards, Caruso added 34 yards, Khory Spruill (above right) had 29, and Kani Kane added 21.

HEAD COACH DANNY ROCCO
"We didn't start well today, which has happened several times this season, but we've always found a way to respond, which has been extraordinary. But today it just didn't happen. Nothing really seemed to go our way and we didn't make the plays when we needed to. I am disappointed and surprised that we didn't rise to the occasion. Villanova may have played one its best games of the season. Give them credit. They beat us to the punch in most phases of the game today."

On the future of Delaware Football
"Winning today really would have put us way ahead of schedule in terms of our rebuilding process. Seven wins is a solid season and we realize that. We won some tight games and beat some good football teams. I am excited about our future. We will learn from this experience and be a better football team next year."

SENIOR CO-CAPTAIN/CENTER BRODY KERN
"All season long we have been able to fight back and keep it close and rely on the defense to keep us in the game. We've used that energy to keep it going. It just didn't happen today. You just can't play all season like that. I thought both teams had a lot of energy today but they had more. It's disappointing."
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University of Delaware Athletics: Welcome to the 21st Century

November 14, 2017
by Kevin Noonan - http://townsquaredelaware.com/

UD is close to reaching their $60 million fundraising goal for a new Athletics Complex and stadium renovations

Last week, UD’s administration unveiled plans for a much-needed, $60 million upgrade to Delaware Stadium, which still resembles the type of stadiums that were around when players wore leather helmets and had nicknames like Bronco and Crazy Legs. 

A lot of that money will go to creature comforts for fans and media, which is nice and needed. But the real game-changer will be the new athletic training and weight rooms. That, more than a new press box (which, we assume, will finally include an elevator) is what will attract good players to Newark, and without good players and winning teams the other stuff doesn’t really matter. 

Delaware’s coaches, especially in football, have been handicapped for years because of UDs’ substandard facilities, and now the Blue Hens will finally be able to recruit on a level playing field, and recruiting if the lifeblood of any college sport. 

Delaware Stadium

For years, former Delaware football coach K.C. Keeler privately complained about UD’s facilities, even though he never publicly ripped the administration for Delaware’s antiquated (by 21st Century standards) stadium, weight room, etc. And Keeler sat by helplessly while one of Delaware’s biggest rivals, James Madison, poured millions into a refurbished stadium and state-of-art athletics center. 

Those kinds of things are especially important to a Division I-AA program when it comes to recruiting, and it’s not a coincidence that JMU is the defending national champion and currently ranked No. 1 in the nation. A big-time Division I program can entice recruits by telling them how many players it sends to the NFL or how many times it plays on national television. But for a kid being recruited by I-AA teams, things like nice, shiny facilities can make all the difference. 

Keeler used to say that Delaware had two things going for it when it came to recruiting – a winning tradition and a large and loyal fan base that few I-AA schools could match. But, in the end, Keeler also knew that didn’t mean as much as those facilities, and his constant harping on that to the administration certainly played a part in his getting fired after the 2012 season, even though he had won a national championship and made it to two more championship games. 

Fundraising continues for the UD Athletic Complex and stadium

By the way, we always enjoy pointing out how successful Keeler has been since getting the boot from UD. While it appears that Delaware has a good chance to make the I-AA playoffs this season, Keeler’s new team, Sam Houston State, is a shoo-in for the post-season — his Bearkats are 9-1 and ranked No. 4 in the nation. It will be the fourth time the Bearkats have made it to the playoffs in Keeler’s four seasons there and he’s compiled an overall record of 43-11 in that time. Last season, Keeler won the Eddie Robinson Award, which is named for the late, great Grambling coach and is given to the nation’s top I-AA coach. 

Now, finally, Keeler’s dream of better and more competitive Delaware facilities will be realized, even if he won’t be around to see it. 

Actually, it will be a while before anybody sees it, since this process is just beginning and everything won’t be finished for several years, which, of course, won’t help recruiting now. But at least the first steps are finally being taken and that’s what counts.

By the way, Delaware is still in the fund-raising process, so if you have any rich friends who are also rabid Blue Hen fans, tell them to get in touch with UD athletic director Chrissie Rawak. We guarantee she’ll return their call.

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Hen defense dominates in 22-3 home finale win over Albany
Nov 11th, 2017 · by Andy Walter Delaware State News

NEWARK — One by one, the seniors got up to say their goodbyes.

Going into their last home game, the Delaware football players thanked their teammates and talked about their careers on Friday night.

But center Brody Kern politely refused.

“I got up and I was like, ‘I’m not going to say thank you yet, because we’re not done yet,’” he told his teammates. “All I’m asking is we win tomorrow.”

And that’s what the Blue Hens did, reeling off 19 unanswered points in the second half to down Albany, 22-3, in a Colonial Athletic Association matchup before a crowd of 16,333 at chilly Delaware Stadium.

Now 5-2 in the CAA, 7-3 overall, Delaware believes a win at rival Villanova next Saturday in its regular-season finale will put it in the NCAA Division I FCS playoffs for the first time since 2010.

So whether this was the seniors’ last game in Delaware Stadium is still up in the air. But they were going to do everything in their power to earn another game.

Safety Ray Jones goes up for one of the Hens’ three interceptions on Saturday. (Delaware sports information/Mark Campbell)

What the Hens got on Saturday was a dominating defensive performance. The Great Danes (1-6 CAA, 3-7 overall) managed just six first downs and 120 yards — the lowest totals Delaware has surrendered in six seasons.

The amazing thing was that 80 of those yards and five of the first downs came on Albany’s second possession, an 18-play, almost-nine-minute march that resulted in a field goal for the Great Danes’ lone points of the contest.

“There was a reality that, ‘Oh my gosh, this could be a long afternoon if we cannot get them off the field,’” coach Danny Rocco said about Albany’s long drive. “But our kids have a lot of resolve on defense. And I think we have a lot of talent.

“So, as the game wears on, they’re just given more opportunities to make plays. I think, when it was all said and done, we wore them down a little bit today and that was the objective, really, from the very beginning.”

“We made a couple changes at halftime,” said junior safety Ray Jones. “After that, we came out and played our game like we were supposed to. We held them to three points and 120 yards, you really can’t do anything better than that.”

Delaware capped off its virtuoso defensive performance with three interceptions and a fumble recovery, all in the second half.

Offensively, the Hens scuffled for most of the first half. Only Frank Raggo’s 29-yard field goal on the last play of the first half allowed them to go in tied, 3-3, at intermission.

Freshman running back Khory Spruill ran for a season-high 86 yards and the first two TDs of his career. (Delaware sports information/Mark Campbell)

Another Raggo field goal, this one from 36 yards, gave Delaware its first lead at 6-3 late in the third quarter.

That play was followed quickly by Christian Lohin’s block of an Albany punt in the end zone. The ball bounced out of the end zone for a safety that pushed the Hens’ lead to 8-3 going into the fourth quarter.

Finally, Delaware sealed the victory by turning to Khory Spruill. The freshman running back got in because starter Kani Kane (Sussex Tech) went down with a shoulder injury.

After not carrying the ball until the second half, the 6-foot, 215-pound Spruill ran for a season-high 86 yards and two touchdowns on 20 carries. The fourth-quarter TDs, on runs of six and one yard, were the first of his career.

“I watch our practice film each week and Khory catches my eye every single day,” said Rocco. “I mean there’s a reason we played him in August. I told him four weeks ago, I said ‘We’re going to need you in November.’ As it is, we certainly needed him today.”

“Coach always tells me to be ready to go every game,” said Spruill. “I practice with the ‘ones’ (starters) every week. It was really just about being ready when your number is called.

“Kani went down and I just wanted to make sure I filled his shoes the right way. I had to step up, not be a freshman and just make plays.”

The Hens, who also got 85 yards on 11 carries from quarterback Joe Walker, finished with a 14-minute edge in time of possession.

Whatever Delaware’s chances of making the playoffs, next week’s Villanova game is huge for the Hens.

Delaware has lost five years in a row and 10 of the last 11 meetings with the Wildcats (2-5, 4-6). The Hens would love to end that streak.

“There’s nobody on this team that has beaten Villanova,” said Kern. “So to say this game wasn’t circled on our schedule from the day Coach Rocco stepped in here, and last season ended, I’d be lying to you. If was definitely hard this week keeping that off our mind.”

“We have a chip on our shoulder right now,” said Jones. “We’re going to go up there with confidence. In practice all week, we’re going to go out there and compete. We’re going to give it our all and that’s all we’ve got to do.”

Extra points

Punter Nick Pritchard had two nice kicks that Jones ran under and caught at Albany’s one and two-yard lines. … Rocco didn’t know the extent of Kane’s injury. Kane ran for 34 yards on 10 carries before being hurt. … QB J.P. Caruso completed 7-of-11 passes for 51 yards. … Receiver Jamie Jarmon returned to the field after missing last week’s game with a bruised lung. He had two catches for six yards and didn’t run the ball. … Delaware’s interceptions came from defensive tackle Blaine Woodson, Jones and linebacker Anthony Jackson. … Linebacker Jalen Kindle had a team-high nine tackles.

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Defense Dominates, Spruill Scores Twice as Blue Hens Shut Down Albany, 22-3
By Delaware Athletics
Nov 11, 2017

NEWARK, Del. -- The University of Delaware defense was dominating once again and freshman running back Khory Spruill enjoyed the finest day of his young career with two fourth-quarter touchdowns as the Blue Hens ran past Albany in a 22-3 Colonial Athletic Association Football victory at festive Delaware Stadium Saturday afternoon.

Delaware (7-3, 5-2 CAA) won for the fifth time in the last six games and kept its postseason playoff hopes strong heading into the regular season finale next Saturday at longtime rival Villanova.

The Blue Hen defense was fierce as usual on Saturday afternoon, holding Albany to just six first downs - five of them on one first quarter drive - and 120 total yards while forcing four turnovers. The Great Danes (3-7, 1-6 CAA), who could muster only a first-quarter field goal to take a brief 3-0 lead, lost for the sixth straight game. Albany managed just 31 yards rushing on 21 carries and quarterback Will Brunson was 12 of 25 for 83 yards and was intercepted three times and sacked once.

Spruill, pressed into action when starter Kani Kane went down with an injury early in the second half, carried 20 times for a game and career-high 86 yards and scored on touchdowns of six and one-yard over in the final quarter as Delaware pulled away.

On one drive, Spruill carried seven straight times and ran the final 43 yards to cap off a scoring drive. He had entered the game having carried the ball just 22 times this season and just nine times over the last six games.

Delaware junior quarterback Joe Walker (#3 at bottom), who has moved into an all-purpose role as a runner, receiver, and passer, also ran for 85 yards on 11 carries. He went over the 1,000 career-yard mark in the process and became just the fifth quarterback in Delaware history to accumulate both 2,000 yards passing and 1,000 yards rushing in a career.

Defensively, junior safety Ray Jones, senior defensive tackle Blaine Woodson (seven tackles), and senior linebacker Anthony Jackson (#11 below) each intercepted a pass, sophomore linebacker Christian Lohin blocked a punt out of bounds for a safety, and senior linebacker Jalen Kindle recorded a team-high nine tackles.

Sophomore punter Nick Pritchard punted five times and twice pinned Albany inside its own two-yard line with pinpoint accuracy as Jones settled under both punts to down the ball. In additon, junior kicker Frank Raggo converted field goals of 29 yards to end the first and 36 yards late in the third quarter to give Delaware a 6-3 lead.

A special ceremony took place at halftime as Delaware announced the launching of Delaware First: The Campaign for the University of Delaware, the new university-wide fundraising and engagement campaign.

Athletics facilities are a top priority for the campaign with a $60 million goal to renovate Delaware Stadium and build a new state-of-the-art Athletic Center for student-athletes. Additionally, Delaware golf alum Ken Whitney, ’80, and his wife, Liz Whitney, have made a transformational lead gift of $10 million to name the Whitney Athletic Center, pushing the total individual commitments towards this campaign to $23 million and marking the largest individual gift in Delaware Athletics history.

HEAD COACH DANNY ROCCO
"Our defense was really extraordinary today. They (Albany) had only one real drive (first quarter field goal) that they were able to put together. We really played to our strengths. I was comfortable with the 3-3 tie at halftime because we were playing so well defensively, we had finally scored, and we were getting the ball first in the second half. We really responded in the second half, which is something we have done a lot of this season. Our kids really have a lot of talent and resolve. We wore Albany down and that was our objective. On offense, we were at our best when it mattered the most."

"Our senior class has been extraordinary with how they have been receptive to our message, the themes, and our goals. They have responded and they have led. We really need each other and everybody in our program as we move to make November meaningful. We have to have everyone on board. We have a lot of guys on this team that just want to win and sacrifice for the good of the team."

KHORY SPRUILL
"Coach (Rocco) always tells me to be ready every game. It's really about being ready when your number gets called and today I was ready. It really felt good (to get my first touchdown)."

RAY JONES
"We made a few changes today at halftime that really made a difference in the second half. You hold a team to three points and 120 yards, you can't do a lot better than that. We have a chip on our shoulder. We are going to go up there (next week at Villanova) with confidence and effort and give it our all and keep this thing going."

HEN SCRATCHINGS
• Delaware's seven wins is the most since the 2013 team went 7-4 but did not make the postseason
• Spruill's previous career-high rushing game was 39 yards vs. Cornell on Sept. 14
• Delaware's defensive effort of holding Albany to six first downs and 120 yards was its best performance since holding Delaware State to four first downs and 112 yards as part of a 45-0 win in 2011
• Junior WR Jamie Jarmon returned from a one-game layoff due to an injury and caught a pass to extend his pass-catching streak to 15 straight games
• Raggo, who is now 11 of 14 on field goals this season, also converted two extra points to extend his consecutive made streak to 64 straight, just three shy of the school record
• The Blue Hens went 5-1 at home this season and outscored opponents 154-75
• Delaware blocked a punt for the second straight game and the Hens have now intercepted 10 passes over the last five games while forcing 13 total turnovers
• Delaware heads to Villanova next Saturday, Nov. 18, for the regular season finale. The Hens will be looking for revenge after losing five straight and 10 of the last 11 meetings vs. the Wildcats
• Delaware honored its 18 seniors and their families in a pregame ceremony as part of Senior Day

====================================================
Blue Hens 80 Percent to $60 Million Fundraising Goal for New Athletic Center and Delaware Stadium Renovations

Nov 11, 2017
By Danny Sirdofsky on behalf of Delaware Athletics



Not much has changed at Delaware Stadium over the last 50 years. On fall Saturdays families still drive in from all over the region to watch the Fightin’ Blue Hens on the gridiron, the Victory Bell still rings after each Delaware touchdown and the marching band still proudly takes the field at halftime. But while these traditions are treasured mainstays of the Delaware Athletics experience, one thing that has not stood the test of time is the stadium itself, or the training, wellness, weightlifting and academic facilities that have been inadequate or non-existent for Blue Hen student-athletes across all sports.

Almost 45 years since any major renovations occurred, the University of Delaware will give the state’s most prominent stadium—and the entire UD athletics campus — a much needed facelift through Delaware First: The Campaign for the University of Delaware, the new university-wide fundraising and engagement campaign. Athletics facilities are a top priority for the campaign with a $60 million goal to renovate Delaware Stadium and build a new state-of-the-art Athletic Center for student-athletes.

Having gone much longer than any other school in the Colonial Athletic Association since undertaking a major stadium renovation—every other school in the conference has completed a major renovation since 2000—the University, Board of Trustees and President Dennis Assanis have announced a commitment of $25 million to help “build our home.”

“Athletics is an essential part of creating an extraordinary experience for all UD students, and our student-athletes and fans deserve top-notch facilities,” President Assanis said. “Through the Delaware First campaign, we are committed to strengthening the Athletics program to benefit the Blue Hen nation now and for generations to come.”

Additionally, Delaware golf alum Ken Whitney, ’80, and his wife, Liz Whitney, have made a transformational lead gift of $10 million to name the Whitney Athletic Center, pushing the total individual commitments towards this campaign to $23 million and marking the largest individual gift in Delaware Athletics history. Ken, a current Delaware Board of Trustees member, and his wife have previously established the Whitney Family Scholarship Endowment and the Whitney Family Endowed Chair in the Lerner College of Business and Economics in 2011. 

“We are excited in knowing the multiple ways this new center will enhance the student-athlete experience at the University for years to come. We also strongly believe in the positive impact athletics can have across an entire university community and beyond,” said Ken and Liz Whitney.

With the University investment and $23 million already raised by the athletic department, more than 80 percent of the campaign goal has been reached as of November 2017. 

Building Our Home

The plan to rebuild and reinvest in athletic facilities includes several phases. During the first, fans and student-athletes will see the following changes:

Renovating the west side of Delaware Stadium:
Chair backs for all seats in the middle three sections (C, D, E).
Upgraded restrooms and concessions.
Stadium Club space with bar, food and exclusive club seating.
Enhanced press box, including a game day production studio and coaches’ booths.
Construction of a new athletic center for all UD student-athletes that will extend along the stadium’s western facade to include:
Student Success Center
Integrated space for academic support, career preparation and leadership development.
Tutoring, mentoring and academic advising stations.
Computer lab that will considerably increase the number of computers currently available to UD student-athletes.
Academic lounge to build community and foster inter-team bonding.
Multipurpose rooms for guest lectures and press conferences. 
Health & Well-Being Center:
10,000-square-foot strength and conditioning space to accommodate multiple teams simultaneously.
Enhanced athletic training space with satellite area for physical therapy partnership.
On-site X-ray machines.
Grab-and-go healthy food options selected by UD nutritionist.
Sports psychology areas to provide mental health resources through private consultations, team workshops and athlete educational sessions.
Hydrotherapy tubs for rejuvenation and therapeutic needs.

“After talking with our dedicated community, partners and supporters, including student-athletes, coaches, alums, donors, staff and University leadership, it was clear that our priority this Campaign was to Build our Home,” said Chrissi Rawak, Director of Intercollegiate Athletics and Recreation Services. “The overwhelming response was that this project was long overdue and we are excited to bring it to life through the investment from the University and the generous support of all those who want to see Delaware Athletics be successful today and ultimately nationally relevant.”

A key addition to the athletics campus will be the new 10,000-square-foot strength and conditioning space to meet the needs of every Blue Hen student-athlete. Inside, more than 100 can lift weights simultaneously, eliminating the present need for separate shifts to allow everyone use of the facilities. The new space will also house a much larger training room, which will get rid of long lines that stretch into the hallway during midday practices.

In addition, the center will have an X-ray machine, hydrotherapy tubs, computer stations and more academic resource space. It will also house offices for health and wellness (strength and conditioning, athletic training, sports medicine, nutrition and sports psychology), as well as student success (academic support, leadership development and career preparation), and include common areas so that all UD student athletes can spend more time together across teams. Perhaps most importantly, the new athletic center will bring together the entire athletic community and save student athletes a considerable amount of travel time by centralizing all resources in a single, state-of-the-art facility.

“The Athletics projects will add great value to the University and will have extraordinary benefits for many people, especially our student athletes,” said UD football head coach Danny Rocco. “The space, with training and academics, will create an environment and culture that will maximize the student-athlete experience. The first-class facility and stadium enhancements showcase the commitment to and vision for the future of our programs here at UD.”

To maximize use of these new resources, the athletic department will make the new hydrotherapy tubs available to UD’s Physical Therapy Clinic, the nation’s #1 ranked program, and the stadium’s club level will be available to rent for private events such as weddings and banquets.

Ground-floor kitchens will be used to teach student-athletes healthy cooking techniques (using food grown at the nearby College of Agriculture and Natural Resources) when they are not being used to prepare food for the concession stands on game days.

University Investment in Athletics

The athletics commitment is a key priority of the Delaware First campaign, which has an overall goal of $750 million. Other top priorities include enhancing graduate education, The Biden Institute and programs and initiatives for innovation and entrepreneurship. The Campaign will create an extraordinary student experience and extend the University’s impact on the world with financial support for scholarships, faculty support, research projects, facilities and experiential learning opportunities across UD.

“Our family believes in all of the great new initiatives happening at Delaware under the leadership of its new President, Dr. Assanis,” said Ken and Liz Whitney. “We are proud to be able to support the Blue Hens of today and tomorrow through the building of a new athletic center.”

The University’s investment in athletics does not stop with upgrading of facilities. The University has invested in health and wellbeing initiatives, including funding new sports psychologist and nutritionist positions for the athletic department, as well supporting the addition of much needed Assistant Coaching positions and scholarships across UD varsity teams.

“This will allow our coaching staff to compete for top recruits nationwide and to provide the best possible experience and support for our student athletes throughout their time here at Delaware,” said Rawak.

Renovation Countdown

Construction on the project will begin once 100 percent of the fundraising goal is met and should take approximately 18-24 months. The design phase for the project is currently underway and will take roughly a year to complete.

“We are immensely grateful to all of those who have given and will give to Delaware Athletics,” said Rawak. “None of this would be possible without the outstanding support of our Blue Hen community. This has been a long time coming and we are excited to say that the time is now.”

A core component of the Campaign is to unite Blue Hens around the globe in advancing The University of Delaware. In support of the belief that every gift counts, a Delaware Athletics crowdfunding page is available with the goal to gain participation from 1,882 donors in honor of athletics inaugural year at the University.

Donate at bluehens.com/DelawareFirst.

Following the completion of this phase of the current campaign, UD will continue to invest in the athletics campus in future phases by renovating the UD Field House, as well as the east side and end zones of the football stadium.

If you would like more information on the Delaware First Campaign and Athletics facility projects, please contact athletic development at bluehensclub@udel.edu or 302.831.8499.

ABOUT DELAWARE FIRST

Delaware First will strengthen the Blue Hen nation and raise funds to support student scholarships, endowed professorships, graduate fellowships, research, facilities and experiential learning opportunities across UD.

The Campaign will also help establish several potential programs to enhance graduate education, initiatives around innovation and entrepreneurship, partnerships through the Biden Institute and the construction of several new buildings around campus, including the biopharmaceutical building on STAR campus, as well as UD athletic facilities, among other strategic projects.

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Visiting Blue Hens rally for 31-17 victory over Maine
Nov 4th, 2017 · by Delaware State News · 

UD tight end Brandon Whaley (81) is congratulated after catching a first-half TD pass. (Delaware sports information/Mark Campbell)

PORTLAND, Maine — In the first quarter, it looked like Delaware’s playoff chances were hanging by a thread.

Spotting Maine a quick 10-point lead, the Blue Hens looked they were in for a rough afternoon.

But Delaware got its act together, scored 31 points over the final three quarters and came back home with a 31-17 Colonial Athletic Association football victory over the Black Bears on Saturday afternoon.

In clinching the program’s first winning season since 2013, the Hens (4-2 CAA, 6-3 overall) believe two more victories will also put them in line for their first NCAA Division I FCS playoff berth since 2010.

None of that seemed very likely, though, when Delaware trailed Maine (3-4, 4-4) 10-0 and were sputtering on offense.

“Today we did a great job of staying together as a team,” said senior nose tackle Bilal Nichols. “Coach (Danny) Rocco always says our strength is in the unity of this group. We really believe that. Whenever times get rough we count on each other. We never give up.

The Hens’ Joe Walker, who played a few different roles on Saturday, runs for some yards against Maine.

“This team is so resilient and that’s what I’m most proud of. We come each day and work hard and count on each other. We played our best when it mattered the most today. When we really needed stops, we got them. When we really needed to control the line of scrimmage, we did. When we needed to get to the QB, we did.”

The contest was tied 17-17 in the fourth quarter when Maine punt returner Micah Wright was stripped of the ball on a hit by Delaware safety Nasir Adderley.

Blue Hens freshman Colby Reeder scooped up the ball at the Maine four yard-line and lunged into the end zone for a touchdown that gave the Hens a 24-17 lead with 13:22 remaining.

On the next Maine drive, the Delaware defense held the Bears to just four yards.

Then, on the ensuing drive, the Hens went 58 yards on 13 plays. The drive, which took nearly eight minutes off the clock, was capped by quarterback J.P. Caruso’s one-yard rushing touchdown run with 4:07 left in the game to seal the victory.

“I thought our ability to run the ball and get some first downs bleeding the clock down, was as significant as anything,” said Rocco. “We’re fortunate to get out of here with a win. I’m certainly excited to secure a winning season and to get a win in November.”

Delaware had lost six of its last eight games to Maine, including four in a row. The Bears also came into the game with a three-game winning streak this season.

Delaware safety Nasir Adderley comes up to make a tackle in Saturday’s game.

The Hens were playing without standout receiver Jamie Jarmon, who was sidelined with an undisclosed injury, In his place, Delaware made more use of former starting quarter Joe Walker.

Walker finished with 165 all-purpose yards, including a 56-yard reception in the second quarter that set up the Hens’ first touchdown. The junior also completed a 42-yard pass and ran the ball nine times for 55 yards.

“Today felt great being a guy who made plays and gave a spark when we needed,” sai Walker. “I always knew I could catch the ball, I just never played wide receiver. Today was the first time playing it. I was just trying to play my role and do as much as I could.

“We planned to have Jamie in the game with me, we didn’t know until yesterday that he wasn’t going to play. I think today was about building a routine so that when we both play teams don’t know what we’re going to do.”

“Joe did a great job,” said Rocco. “He’s going to give us some energy here and some explosive production as we continue. Hopefully, we’ll have Jamie back next week because that will give us a few more options.”

Tight end Brandon Whaley caught his first career touchdown pass at 5:42 of the second quarter while safety Tim Poindexter made his first career interception in the third quarter. Linebacker Troy Reeder made 17 tackles in the victory and also blocked a punt.

Junior Kani Kane (Sussex Tech) also for 99 yards and his seventh rushing touchdown of the season.

The Hens return home next Saturday, hosting Albany for Senior Day at 3:30 p.m.

“We’re excited to go home this week and continue our quest this season,” said Rocco. “We’re finding ways to remain relevant. Today was a great team win. The offense did things when they had to, and the defense made stops when they had to. Ultimately the special teams and kicking game made a lot of big plays.”

==============================================

Colby Reeder Pushes Hens to Crucial 31-17 Win over Maine
By Delaware Athletics
Nov 4, 2017

PORTLAND, Maine -- The University of Delaware won its fourth Colonial Athletic Association football game of the season Saturday afternoon as the Blue Hens used a big second half to defeat Maine 31-17 at Fitzpatrick Stadium.

The turning point of the game occurred early in the fourth quarter when Maine punt returner Micah Wright was stripped of the ball by Delaware defensive back Nasir Adderley.

Blue Hens freshman Colby Reeder (#4 below) scooped up the ball at the Maine five-yard line and dove into the end zone for the crucial touchdown that gave the Blue Hens the lead for good at 24-17 with 13:22 remaining. 

On the next Maine drive, the stingy Delaware defense held the Black Bears (4-4, 3-4 CAA) to just four yards.

On the ensuing Delaware drive, the Blue Hens (6-3, 4-2 CAA) went 58yards on 13 plays. The drive, which took nearly eight minutes off the clock (7:39), was capped by quarterback J.P. Caruso’s one-yard rushing touchdown with 4:07 left in the final period to seal the victory. The drive was the team's third longest in terms of time this season.

For the afternoon, the Blue Hens accumulated 346 yards of total offense. Joe Walker provided a massive spark for UD as the junior quarterback turned all-purpose threat compiled 165 total yards between rushing, receiving and passing, including a huge 56-yard reception in the second quarter that set up the Hens first touchdown.

Tight end Brandon Whaley caught his first career touchdown pass at 5:42 of the second quarter to give the Hens their first points of the day while safety Tim Poindexter made his first career interception in the third quarter. Linebacker Troy Reeder made a career-high 17 tackles in the victory and also blocked a punt while his brother, Colby, also recorded a sack in the final quarter and finished with seven tackles.

Junior Kani Kane (#29 at right) also for 99 yards and his seventh rushing touchdown of the season, a one-yard burst with 21 seconds left in the second quarter that give Delaware a 14-10 advantage at the break. Kane just missed surpassing the 100-yard mark for the third straight game.

Adderley, one of the nation's leaders with five interceptions, recorded a career-high 14 tackles while Bilal Nichols had seven tackles, a sack, a pass breakup, and a blocked field goal. Delaware kicker Frank Raggo added a 48-yard field goal three minutes into the second half to give Delaware a 17-10 lead.

The win was Delaware’s fourth victory in its last five games and snapped a personal four-game losing streak against Maine. The Hens also snapped Maine’s season-best three-game winning streak.

Maine held a 451-346 advantage in total yards thanks to the play of running back Josh Mack, who ran for 173 yards and caught six passes for 38 yards. He entered the game leading all NCAA FCS runners with 139.9 yards rushing per game.

The Blue Hens return home next Saturday, hosting Albany for Senior Day. Kickoff from Delaware Stadium is scheduled for 3:30 p.m.

Head Coach Danny Rocco:
“Our special teams kept us in the game today, and then we got going on offense. We did a lot today with Joe Walker. We knew that Jamie Jarmon (out with an injury) was most likely not going to play, so we put a plan together for Joe to do some of the things that Jamie has been doing. That gave us the explosive plays that we needed to have in the game. Joe did a great job. I thought our ability to run the ball and get some first downs bleeding the clock down, was as significant as anything. Maine is very talented defensively and physical. Offensively they know what they’re doing with the ball. Their running back is very special. So we’re fortunate to get out of here with a win. I’m certainly excited to secure a winning season and to get a win in November. We’re excited to go home this week and continue our quest this season. We’re finding ways to remain relevant. Today was a great team win. The offense did things when they had to, and the defense made stops when they had to. Ultimately the special teams and kicking game made a lot of big plays.”

On play of Joe Walker:
“I have supported Joe since I arrived here. I have made comments about his athleticism. He is one of our guys that can take the ball the length of the field on a run, a pass or a scramble. He’s that athletic. He’s going to give us some energy here and some explosive production as we continue. Hopefully, we’ll have Jamie (Jarmon) back next week because that will give us a few more options.”

Junior Joe Walker (#3 at left):
“Today felt great being a guy who made plays and gave a spark when we needed. I always knew I could catch the ball, I just never played wide receiver. Today was the first time playing it. I was just trying to play my role and do as much as I could. We planned to have Jamie in the game with me, we didn’t know until yesterday that he wasn’t going to play. I think today was about building a routine so that when we both play teams don’t know what we’re going to do.”

Defensive Tackle Bilal Nichols:
“Today we did a great job of staying together as a team. That’s one thing we’ve done very well this season. We’ve stayed together and created unity. Coach Rocco always says our strength is in the unity of this group. We really believe that. Whenever times get rough we count on each other. We never give up. This team is so resilient and that’s what I’m most proud of. We come each day and work hard and count on each other. We played our best when it mattered the most today. When we really needed stops, we got them. When we really needed to control the line of scrimmage, we did. When we needed to get to the QB, we did. I feel that we made plays at the biggest moments of the game.” 

HEN SCRATCHINGS:
• By winning their sixth game of the season, Delaware secured its first winning season since going 7-5 in 2013. Delaware head coach Rocco has now posted a winning campaign in all 12 of seasons as a college head coach
• Delaware played Maine in Portland for the first time in school history. The game marked the first time since 2005 that Maine played a game in the state's largest city
• Delaware downed Maine for the first time since 2010 and won in the state of Maine for the first time since 2009 after two straight setbacks
• Rocco is now 26-12 (.684) during his head coaching career in games following a loss, including a 3-0 mark at Delaware
• Troy Reeder blocked a punt for the second straight season after also posting one at Richmond in 2016
• Delaware has now forced 22 turnovers this season, the fourth highest total in the nation and No. 2 in the CAA
• The Hens lost two fumbles in the first half, marking the first time Delaware had lost a fumble since the James Madison game on Sept. 30. Delaware had gone 265:43 minutes of playing time since its last lost fumble
• Raggo now has three field goals over 48 yards this season, has hit on 9 of 13 field goal attempts overall, and has converted 59 straight extra points

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CAA Football Announces 2018 Schedule

Rob Washburn - http://caasports.com/
November 1, 2017

CAA Football has released its schedule for the 2018 season, which includes a challenging non-conference slate along with the always competitive battle for the league title.

The conference schedule includes four home games and four road games for each team as they face eight of the other 11 CAA Football members. There is at least one conference contest during each of the 12 weeks in 2018, with a full slate of league action on October 13, November 10 and November 17.

The non-conference schedule features 12 games against FBS opponents, including six versus teams from Power 5 conferences. Every CAA team except Delaware will meet a FBS foe, and the Blue Hens will test themselves against five-time FCS national champion North Dakota State. So far this season, CAA teams are 20-3 against non-conference FCS opponents. The league has also recorded a pair of victories over FBS foes for the second year in a row as James Madison defeated East Carolina and New Hampshire beat Georgia Southern. There are no games against non-Division I opponents.

Thursday, August 30
*New Hampshire at Maine
*Rhode Island at Delaware

Saturday, September 1
UAlbany at Pittsburgh
Elon at USF
James Madison at NC State
Richmond at Virginia
Stony Brook at Air Force
Towson at Morgan State
Villanova at Temple
William & Mary at Bucknell

Saturday, September 8
*UAlbany at Rhode Island
Lafayette at Delaware
Furman at Elon
James Madison at Norfolk State
Maine at Western Kentucky
Colgate at New Hampshire
Fordham at Richmond
Bryant at Stony Brook
Towson at Wake Forest
Villanova at Lehigh
William & Mary at Virginia Tech

Saturday, September 15
*Elon at William & Mary
*Towson at Villanova
Morgan State at UAlbany
Cornell at Delaware
Robert Morris at James Madison
New Hampshire at Colorado
Rhode Island at Connecticut
St. Francis at Richmond
Stony Brook at Fordham

Saturday, September 22
*William & Mary at James Madison
*Richmond at Stony Brook
St. Francis at UAlbany
Delaware at North Dakota State
Elon at Charleston Southern
Maine at Central Michigan
Bucknell at Villanova

Saturday, September 29
*Villanova at Stony Brook
*New Hampshire at Elon
*James Madison at Richmond
Maine at Yale
Rhode Island at Harvard
The Citadel at Towson
Colgate at William & Mary

Saturday, October 6
*UAlbany at William & Mary
*Delaware at Richmond
*Elon at James Madison
*Villanova at Maine
*Stony Brook at Towson
Holy Cross at New Hampshire
Brown at Rhode Island

Saturday, October 13
*Elon at Delaware
*Richmond at UAlbany
*William & Mary at Towson
*James Madison at Villanova
*Stony Brook at New Hampshire
*Maine at Rhode Island

Saturday, October 20
*Rhode Island at Stony Brook
*Delaware at New Hampshire
*Towson at UAlbany
*Richmond at Elon
*Maine at William & Mary

Saturday, October 27
*UAlbany at Maine
*Towson at Delaware
*Stony Brook at James Madison
*New Hampshire at Villanova
*William & Mary at Rhode Island

Saturday, November 3
*Villanova at Richmond
*Delaware at UAlbany
*Rhode Island at Elon
*James Madison at New Hampshire
*Maine at Towson

Saturday, November 10
*UAlbany at New Hampshire
*Maine at Richmond
*Rhode Island at James Madison
*Delaware at Stony Brook
*Towson at Elon
*William & Mary at Villanova

Saturday, November 17
*Villanova at Delaware
*Elon at Maine
*Stony Brook at UAlbany
*James Madison at Towson
*New Hampshire at Rhode Island
*Richmond at William & Mary

*denotes CAA Football game

DATES SUBJECT TO CHANGE – Times will be announced at a later date