Blogs > On Campus with ross maghielse

A college sports blog from The Oakland Press, dedicated to covering Michigan and Michigan State athletics as well as former Oakland County athletes at other schools.

Monday, August 23, 2010

UDM's Tolomei, Troy lead Titans to academic honor

Longtime doubles partners for the University of Detroit-Mercy Titans men's tennis team, Patrick Troy (Birmingham Brother Rice) and Nick Tolomei (Rochester Adams) may have struggled on the court in the 2009-10 season, but they certainly didn't off of it.

They were two of three Titan men's players recently recognized as Scholar-Athletes by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association, helping their team earn All-American Academic Team status for the season, just its second as a varsity program. Troy had a 3.8 GPA, while Tolomei sported a 3.667, helping raise the Titans to a 3.329 team GPA.

The  UDM women's tennis team was also honored, as five Scholar-Athletes helped the Titans to a 3.469 GPA.

Tolomei and Troy teamed up for 13 wins at No. 3 doubles in 2008-09 — helping Tolomei earn the Coaches Award as a freshman a total of 24 wins that ranked third-best on the team —  but were just 5-6 together in 2009-10.

A junior-to-be, Tolomei wasn't idle during the summer, either, going 5-1 over a three-day span to make it to the finals of the ITA Midwest Summer Circuit in July, upsetting No. 8-seeded C.J. Griffin of Penn State in the round of 16, before losing to Dartmouth's Brandon DeBot, 6-4, 6-1.

“I played my best when it counted. In every match that I played three sets, I lost the second so I lost the momentum, but I was able to recover and move on,” Tolomei said in a story on  
“Everyone here is a good player so to be able to defeat not only him (CJ Griffin), but the others will give me great confidence going into the season as I will probably face a lot of these guys again.

Labels: , ,

Friday, August 20, 2010

OLSM's Robert Bolden moves closer to shot at starting for Penn State

No doubt after leading Orchard Lake St. Mary's to the state title game twice in his high school career, Robert Bolden made the decision to sign with Penn State dreaming he'd go to Happy Valley, replace Daryll Clark and lead the Nittany Lions to a Big Ten title.

Forget the fact that the venerable Joe Paterno hasn't started a true freshman QB in nearly two decades.

No, literally — forget it.

Despite the fact that Bolden appeared the odd man out, experience-wise, in a four-man competition at QB for Penn State, his competition recently narrowed by one, as the PSU coaching staff informed U.S. Army All-American Paul Jones — the star of the spring game after enrolling early — that he'd be redshirted, reported the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

That leaves Bolden, sophomore Kevin Newsom and redshirt sophomore Matt McGloin in the battle. According the the Post-Gazette's Ron Musselman, Bolden has been the most impressive QB in camp, despite his relative inexperience, and currently has a better grasp of the offense than Jones.

There's just over three weeks left before the Nittany Lions open the season vs. Youngstown State, but the door has been cracked for a pair of true freshman from this state — Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez admitted it was still "possible" for Devin Gardner to be the other — to start the season under center.

Big Ten Network analysts Gerry DiNardo and Howard Griffith have already called the race, predicting Bolden to be the Week One starter.

Labels: , , , , , , , ,

Monday, August 16, 2010

OLSM's Dionte Allen transferring from Florida State

Once one of the nation's most highly coveted cornerbacks in the prep ranks in his senior year at Orchard Lake St. Mary's, Dionte Allen has decided to transfer from Florida State, the school announced Monday, after granting his release.

The No. 3 player in Michigan in 2007, and 40th-best overall according to, Allen struggled to get on the field with the Seminoles, then struggled to stay there when he finally did. After a redshirt year, Allen played in just five games as a freshman, then split time at corner last season, starting once. His redshirt sophomore season was curtailed by a broken thumb, which required surgery and cost him four games.

Allen was pushed by freshman sensation Greg Reid, the Seminoles' nickel back and primary return man, and may have seen the handwriting on the wall, with Florida State adding three more highly-touted DBs — including five-star stud Lamarcus Joyner — in the 2010 recruiting class.

Labels: , , ,

Thursday, August 12, 2010

U-M coach Rich Rodriguez speaks after first fall practice

Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez thinks his Wolverines should be improved in his third year at the helm. Coming off back-to-back losing seasons, and having gone through an NCAA investigation that found the first major infractions in the history of the program, they had better be. Rodriguez says he doesn't feel any extra urgency, despite the hot seat he's on, and doesn't want any of the difficulties to affect his players. "All that other stuff, I told them 'Let me handle it,'" he said Monday. He also knows that there's one quick way to get rid of all the scrutiny. "Winning cures a lot of things," he said with a grin. "I've been told that a lot of times."

Labels: , ,

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

MSU coach Mark Dantonio speaks at media day

Michigan State head football coach Mark Dantonio spoke Tuesday morning at media day, outlining expectations for his fourth season at the helm of the Spartans. Even though his team is coming off a 6-7 season — marred after the fact by the distraction of an off-campus altercation involving his players — Dantonio likes the chemistry of this year's squad, and has no problems with his team dreaming of roses.

Labels: , ,

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Oxford's Ghiaciuc signs with Patriots

Journeyman NFL center Eric Ghiaciuc, the Oxford native, signed a contract with the New England Patriots today, according to several published reports, providing depth along the offensive line as a backup to starter Dan Koppen.

The 29-year-old Ghiaciuc has bounced around after his rookie contract ran out with the Bengals. He'd started 42 of 48 games with the team that drafted him, including all 16 games in 2008. Ghiaciuc was a fourth-round pick in the 2005 draft, out of Central Michigan University.

Ghiaciuc signed with Kansas City as an unrestricted free agent, but didn't make it out of training camp. He hooked on with San Diego near the end of last season, after the Chargers' starting center, Scott Mruczkowski went down with an injury. The Browns had Ghiaciuc on their roster earlier this calendar year.

Labels: , , , , , , , ,

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Izzo: Chris Allen won't be back with Spartans

What's been long rumored is now fact.

MSU and Tom Izzo announced Tuesday night that they've parted ways with talented-yet-undermotivated guard Chris Allen.

"It's been no secret that Chris Allen's been in a tenuous position since the spring. There were multiple obligations that Chris had to meet in order to return for his senior season," Izzo said in a press release. "While he did make progress through the summer, he has failed to meet all the obligations and will not be a part of our program this fall."

The Georgia native started 32 games in his three-year Spartan career, including 27 a year ago, when he averaged 8.2 points per game, and was MSU's best 3-point option. With one year of eligibility remaining, it's probable that Allen will transfer to another Division I school, sit out a season, then finish his eligibility.

That's exactly what Izzo's release suggested.

"I know he's going to be a great player. He deserves another chance to play basketball somewhere, but it's in everyone's interest that it be somewhere other than Michigan State," the coach's statement said. "Like every player, he has to mature a little bit. I think a year away from the game will be beneficial for his development as a person and a player."

Allen was part of the uber-talented backcourt with roommates Kalin Lucas and Durrell Summers, but drew Izzo's ire (and a suspension) on the eve of this spring's Big Ten Tournament. All three had their run-ins with Izzo, but Allen's status remained the haziest, even as he tried to repair the relationship with his coach and teammates this summer.

It's unclear what the last straw was, but the player didn't seem to blame anyone but himself.

"Coach was straight-forward with me about what I needed to do to remain a part of the team," Allen said in the same press release. "Unfortunately, I didn't meet all the obligations. I have enjoyed my time at Michigan State and I appreciate all the support from my fans, and everyone associated with the program. It's unfortunate things didn't work out, but I'm leaving on good terms with my teammates and coaches."

Labels: , , , , ,

Monday, August 2, 2010

High Hopes for OLSM grad Justin Siller in his return to Boilermakers

Often times, when a player gets a second chance with a team, the coach of that team tends to take a wait-and-see approach.

Not so with Orchard Lake St. Mary's grad Justin Siller, who's back with the Purdue Boilermakers after a year in community college exile (read my earlier post about his dismissal and his May reinstatement here), and will be a huge part of the team's plans.

"He's back in school, he's eligible, he's on the team, and we're excited about having him back," said Purdue coach Danny Hope at Monday's Big Ten media day in Chicago. "He's a great teammate, a fine person, an outstanding student. Obviously, we missed his services last year."

The Boilermakers didn't necessarily need Siller at quarterback — the position from which he'd engineered a 48-42 win over Michigan in his first start in 2008 — since they had Joey Elliott. The beneficiary of Siller's year-long absence, in that he won the QB derby last spring by default, Elliott led Purdue to just a 5-7 record, but nearly swept the state of Michigan, beating the Wolverines, 38-36, and losing to the Spartans, 40-37.

This year, the Boilermakers will have Miami (Fla.) transfer Robert Marve — who Hope called "as talented as any quarterback (he'd) been around" — but they'll still need Siller's versatility and athleticism.

Hope noted that the 6-foot-4, 220-pound Siller is currently listed on the depth chart at wide receiver, but he could line up at any of the skill positions on offense. That could be especially critical, since the Boilers will be without starting running back Ralph Bolden, who tore an ACL in spring practice. Siller may end up in the mix at running back with Al-Terek McBurse and another converted WR, Keith Carlos, a JUCO transfer who was a runner in junior college.

"He's hard to tackle, can make you miss. He's a heck of a football player and a heck of a guy — huge shot in the arm for our football team if we can get Justin Siller back this year," Hope said. "Justin Siller can be a difference maker for our football team, when it's all said and done, and I expect him to impact a whole lot of football games."

Labels: , , , , , ,