Wednesday, January 12, 2011
Marcus returning as Cavs' strength coach
- Cavs continue to look west in scheduling
- Former Virginia assistant Mike Groh joins Bears staff
- Fairchild not expecting to overhaul UVa offense
- Lazor: Eagles job too good to pass up
Aaron McFarling's blog
Virginia announced Tuesday that Evan Marcus, strength and conditioning coach for the Miami Dolphins the past three seasons, will be returning to UVa in a similar role.
Virginia had announced over the weekend that two-year strength coach Brandon Hourigan would not be returning in 2011-2012, a move that made more sense in the context of Tuesday's developments.
Marcus' title will be "director of football training and development."
"This hire is further evidence that the stars are starting to align in Mike London's favor as he builds his program," Jon Oliver, executive associate director of athletics, said in a UVa release. "I firmly believe that the strength coach in football is as important as the coordinators given the amount of time this individual spends with the student-athletes."
Marcus was UVa strength coach from 2003-06 under former head coach Al Groh. He resigned in 2007 to head strength and conditioning for the Atlanta Falcons.
Uncertainty over the future of Dolphins' head coach Tony Sparano may have left Marcus receptive to a UVa offer at this time.
"I don't know too many people who have the chance to come back to a place that is very special to them," said Marcus, who was at UVa when London was the Cavaliers' defensive-line coach and recruiting coordinator.
"I told coach London that my job is to help him win championships. He wants a physical brand of football and that's what I plan to deliver by helping our players get stronger, faster and more explosive."
As opposed to the NFL, there is a limit on the amount of time that players can spend with coaches, particularly during the summer. At many times of the year, their greatest interaction is with the strength coach.
"At the college level, you can really help to develop the character of the individual in addition to his strength and conditioning," Marcus said. "I missed that and it was a part of coming back to Virginia."
Hourigan could not be reached for comment.
-- Doug Doughty
AP tabs Auburn No. 1; Hokies finish 16th
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Auburn has finished No. 1 in The Associated Press college football poll, completing an unprecedented climb to its first national title in 53 years.
The Tigers led the Top 25 after a 22-19 victory against Oregon in the BCS championship Monday night.
Undefeated TCU (13-0) will have to settle for No. 2. The Horned Frogs received the other three first-place votes.
Oregon finished third, a spot ahead of Pac-10 rival Stanford. Ohio State was fifth.
The Atlantic Coast Conference had four teams in the poll -- No. 16 Virginia Tech, No. 17 Florida State, No. 23 Maryland and No. 25 North Carolina State. The Hokies were No. 15 in the final USA Today coaches' poll.
Michigan picks Hoke; Miles staying at LSU
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Michigan selected Brady Hoke as its new football coach.
Athletic director Dave Brandon announced the decision Tuesday, hours after LSU said Les Miles would be staying with the Tigers.
Hoke coached San Diego State in 2009-10 and was the Ball State coach from 2003-08. He will be introduced at a news conference today in Ann Arbor.
He replaces Rich Rodriguez, who was fired last week after three disappointing seasons.
Former Tech, UVa OC Tranquill retiring
BOSTON -- Boston College offensive coordinator Gary Tranquill is retiring.
The 70-year-old Tranquill, who served stints as an offensive coordinator at both Virginia Tech and Virginia, made the announcement on Tuesday after spending two seasons under coach Frank Spaziani.
His 48-year coaching career began in 1962 as a defensive coach at Wittenberg, where he had played quarterback. He was head coach at Navy from 1982-86.
BC LB wins Rudy Award
BOSTON -- Linebacker Mark Herzlich of Boston College has won the Rudy Award after missing a season with a rare form of bone cancer then returning to play his senior year.
Miami hires WR coach
CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- Cleveland Browns wide receivers coach George McDonald has been hired for the same job with the Miami Hurricanes.
Illinois RB turning pro
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- Illinois running back Mikel Leshoure will try to cash in on a record-breaking 2010 season and enter the NFL draft.
Stanford lifts McFarling to 1st Forecasters title
Stanford's victory over Virginia Tech in the Orange Bowl lifted columnist Aaron McFarling to his first victory in the Fearless Forecasters picking competition.
McFarling entered the bowls with a seven-game spread over perennial contender Randy King.
King picked the Hokies, who were 40-12 losers to Stanford, and that started a slide that landed him behind runner-up Katrina Waugh.
McFarling, a doormat in nine previous appearances, finished at 200-100. Waugh, who was 30-10 over the past two weeks, came in at 196-104.
Defending champion Doug Doughty was 8-12 on the bowls and finished last at 187-113, trailing King (195-105) and Mark Berman (193-107).
Sports editor Steve Hemphill, whose picks are available only on-line, was 7-13 in the bowls and 192-108 overall.
Justin Price won the "citizens division" with an on-line record of 208-92. Price edged Gary Rice and defending citizens champ Butch Simpson, who were tied for second at 206-94.
-- Staff, wire reports