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We’ve moved! Check out a new home for same great coverage of Idaho athletics

31 Oct

This is what a football story looks like on our new site.

For the past three years or so, this blog has been our home to get you the information about Vandal athletics you need to know. Well now the time has come that we’ve grown out of our studio apartment and need a new home.

You can now visit us at thevandalnation.com or via a redirect at uiargonaut.com/vandalnation.

The reason for this move — technical and aesthetic.

This blog is hosted by WordPress which limits us in design, file size, file type and embedding options. Basically we could put words and pictures and nothing else.

The new blog which is self-hosted allows us to completely customize our look, utilize thousands of widgets and plugs-in, bring back a live blogging platform and it plain and simple looks better.

you will also notice with the new blog a better relationship with The Argonaut. We will post daily sports stories from every sport for more content along with our usual coverage and analysis. Add on that basketball season is starting and you’ll find more content than ever on Vandal Nation over these next few months.

We want to thank you for your support of Vandal Nation over the past few years and we look forward to welcoming you to our new home. So change your bookmarks and get reading.

Sincerely,

Sean Kramer, VN Manager
Madison McCord, Web Manager
Theo Lawson, Argonaut Sports Editor
Elisa Eiguren, Argonaut Editor-in-Chief

Robb Akey survey

24 Oct

Did Rob Spear make the right decision to let go of Robb Akey during the season or should he have waited until the season’s end? We want your opinion. Follow the link below to complete our survey and we will release the results next week.

http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/6BMRTS8

WAC preseason polls announced, Idaho too low

24 Oct

Madison McCord | Vandal Nation
Junior forward Stephen Madison throws down a dunk before the Black and Gold Scrimmage Friday.

The preseason suspension of Idaho center Kyle Barone must have really hurt the Vandal men’s basketball team who have been picked to finish sixth and fifth in the coaches and media polls respectively.

The Vandal women’s team also slipped lower than we projected finishing fifth and sixth in the coaches and media polls respectively.

Three bright spots did arise from the polls though for the Vandals, with three players receiving all-WAC honors. For the men, Barone was picked as a first-team member in both polls after finishing last season as a second-team all-WAC selection. On the women’s team, junior forward Alyssa Charlston was a first-team selection in both polls, while sophomore guard Krissy Karr received second-team placement in both. Continue reading

News Conference —€” Gesser takes over as interim coach

22 Oct

Idaho football interim coach Jason Gesser and Athletic Director Rob Spear discuss the replacement of former coach Robb Akey, expectations for the remainder of the 2012 season and the Vandals’ coaching outlook in the future.

Idaho coach Robb Akey terminated

21 Oct

Idaho football coach Robb Akey has been terminated effective immediately and Offensive Coordinator Jason Gesser will take over as head coach on an interim basis, the athletic department announced Sunday.

“The President (Duane Nellis) and I believe it is important to make this move now so we can immediately begin the process of hiring a new coach for the 2013 season,” Athletic Director Rob Spear said. “We appreciate Coach Akey’s enthusiasm and dedication to the University of Idaho but this is the right move at this time.”

The termination comes on the heels of Akey’s 70th game as coach of the Vandals, a 70-28 loss at La. Tech. Akey is 20-50 in his five-and-a-half seasons with Idaho and 1-7 this season.

Spear said a search for Akey’s replacement will begin immediately.

News conference audio —

Rob Spear

http://www.uiargonaut.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/VN-News-Conference-—-Gesser-announced-as-interim-coach-Spear.mp3

Jason Gesser

http://www.uiargonaut.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/VN-News-Conference-—-Gesser-announced-as-interim-coach.mp3

Akey signed a contract extension in June 2010 following the Vandals’ Humanitarian Bowl victory. The extension was set to extend through 2014. Per terms of the agreement, if terminated, Akey would receive his base annual salary of $165,796.80 per year “until the terms of this agreement ends or until (Akey) obtains employment, which occurs first.”

In Akey’s third season with the Vandals, he led the team to a 8-5 record which included a Humanitarian Bowl victory, Idaho’s second ever bowl victory.

Notable players to play under Akey include San Francisco 49ers left guard Mike Iupati, Houston Texans safety Shiloh Keo and former Chicago Bears quarterback Nathan Enderle.

Idaho starting quarterback Dominique Blackman along with other Vandals took to Twitter following Akey’s termination to express their feelings.

Gesser, who has been on the Idaho staff for two seasons, spent time as a quarterback in the NFL and Canadian Football League after playing his college football at Washington State. Before coming to Idaho, Gesser coached the Eastside Catholic High School Crusaders from Sammamish, Wash., for two seasons.

OFFICIAL: 2013 football schedule

19 Oct

The following is Idaho’s football schedule for the 2013 season, per an e-mail sent from the athletic department. The final game will be against an unannounced BCS opponent.

In a conference call, athletic director Rob Spear has also announced that Idaho will join the Big Sky Conference in all other sports for the 2014-2015 season.

Vandal Football 2013

Date              Opponent                            Conference                     Location                                Series                                                First played

Aug. 31        North Texas                        Sun Belt                             Denton, Texas                  UNT leads 4-5                                            1996

Sept. 7         Wyoming                              Mountain West           Laramie, Wyo.                  Idaho leads 4-2                                        1921

Sept. 14      Northern Illinois             Mid-American               Moscow, Idaho                Tied 3-3                                                          1969

Sept. 21      Washington State          Pac-12                                Pullman, Wash.               WSU leads 69-17-3                                1894

Sept. 28      Temple                                  Big East                              Moscow, Idaho                First meeting                                                        -

Oct. 5            Fresno State                      Mountain West           Moscow, Idaho                Fresno State leads 10-4                     1946

Oct. 12         Arkansas State                 Sun Belt                             Jonesboro, Ark.                Tied 4-4                                                          1975

Oct. 19         Bye

Oct. 26         Mississippi                         SEC                                        Oxford, Miss                       First meeting                                                        -

Nov. 2           New Mexico State          Independent                 Moscow, Idaho                Idaho leads 13-5                                     1971

Nov. 9           Old Dominion                    Colonial                            Moscow, Idaho                First meeting                                                        -

Nov. 16        Bye

Nov. 23        BCS opponent TBA                                                                                                             -

Nov. 30        New Mexico State          Independent                 Las Cruces, N.M.             Idaho leads 13-5                                     1971

2013 Independent schedule: Spear likely to announce seven more

19 Oct

Athletic director Rob Spear will hold a 4:30 PM PT conference call today and will likely announce the remaining games for Idaho’s 2013 Independent schedule. In addition to the four games that have been revealed in recent months, Spear, according to Brian Murphy of the Idaho Statesman, will announce seven more games during the conference call.

As has been rumored, Idaho will remain in the Western Athletic Conference for Olympic sports in 2013, before transitioning to the Big Sky in 2014-2015. Spear confirmed this information with the Idaho Statesman on Friday.

The Vandals’ current 2013 football slate includes games at Wyoming (Sept. 7), vs. Northern Illinois (Sept. 14), at Washington State (Sept. 21) and at Mississippi (Oct. 26).

Contracts for these additional seven games have been signed. The Vandals will host Temple, Fresno State, New Mexico State and Old Dominion. Idaho will visit New Mexico State, Arkansas State and North Texas.

The home-and-home with New Mexico State is something the schools have been working toward since the spring.

President Nellis, AD Rob Spear speak on SBOE vote for independence/Big Sky

17 Aug

Update (8/17/12):

University President Duane Nellis and athletic director Rob Spear met with media members Friday afternoon after the State Board of Education vote. The actual announcement for “exploring” independence is not a surprise to anybody, it’s been anticipated for the last month now. But it is very refreshing to hear the school’s administration actually come out and say it.

Who’s got some carpet cleaner for that?

It’s also refreshing to see that Spear seemingly has the pieces in place to complete a two-year independent schedule that will allow Idaho to abide by the NCAA rules required to maintain Division-I Football Subdivision status (mainly, five home games, only one against an FCS opponent). Continue reading

Legendary “Voice of the Vandals” passes away

26 Jul

By Madison McCord

Former Idaho Vandals football and basketball broadcaster Bob Curtis passed away Wednesday at his home in Colfax. Curtis was 87.

Courtesy: Idaho Athletic Media Relations

Courtesy: Idaho Athletic Media Relations

Curtis started his career as a senior at Washington State University calling various games in Idaho, Montana and Washington. He was hired shortly after leaving WSU by Idaho to handle their play-by-play duties which he did until his retirement in 2004.

Curtis is best known for calling 540 consecutive Idaho football games including one in 2003 in which he went through a hip replacement surgery the week before. Curtis also called hundreds of basketball games for the Vandals.

Along with being a Vandal Hall of Fame member, Curtis was named the co-recepient of the National Football Foundation/College Football Hall of Fame Chris Schenkel Award in 2008 and was named the Idaho Sportscaster of the Year 33 times by the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association. Curtis’ name was also given to the press box in the Kibbie Dome when it was remodeled before the 2011 season.

A service to remember Curtis will be held at 10 a.m on August 3 at the Baptist Church in Colfax.

Here is how Vandals everywhere reacted to the news:

Rob Spear conference realignment teleconference

4 May

University of Idaho Athletic Director Rob Spear addressed the media on Friday in a  teleconference discussing UI’s future after five WAC schools left the conference earlier in the day.

http://www.uiargonaut.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/1027.mp3

WACocalypse has begun – Texas State to Sun Belt is official

2 May

Courtesy of TxStateBobcats.com

Texas State University has accepted a bid to join the Sun Belt conference in 2013-2014 the schools’ official website reported this morning.

The University of Texas System Board of Regents is also reported to be voting today on Texas-San Antonio’s bid to Conference-USA.

Both Texas State and UTSA will be joining the WAC as football members in 2012-2013, which will apparently be their only season in the conference.

Continue reading

Athletic Department mum on WAC rumors

30 Apr

Idaho Athletic Director Rob Spear declined comment to Vandal Nation Monday on rumors of WAC schools looking to leave the conference.

In the last week, news has surfaced of impending defections of Utah State and San Jose State to the Mountain West. In addition to those two schools leaving the conference, speculation is that Louisiana Tech and Texas-San Antonio will leave the WAC for Conference USA after the 2012 season. The moves would be effective for the 2013-14 academic year.

Reports also surfaced Monday speculating that Texas State and Texas-Arlington will be joining the Sun Belt in 2013-14. Texas State and Texas-San Antonio are slated to join the WAC in 2012-13 in all sports, with Texas-Arlington, Seattle University and the University of Denver joining the conference as non-football playing schools.

Continue reading

Toomer swooped up by Seattle

29 Apr

Theo Lawson

Argonaut

The Seattle Seahawks have prolonged the career of Idaho inside linebacker Korey Toomer, after drafting Toomer with the 19th pick in the fifth round of the 2012 NFL Draft.

Although Toomer was the only Vandal drafted, four of his teammates have agreed to join four separate teams as free agents. Running back Princeton McCarty is set to join the Carolina Panthers, defensive tackle Michael Cosgrove will join the Detroit Lions, offensive tackle Tyrone Novikoff will join the Dallas Cowboys and another offensive tackle, Matt Cleveland, will join the Cleveland Browns.

After missing the first phone call from the Seahawks, Toomer, who doubted Seattle would draft a second linebacker, answered the phone on the second attempt.

“They asked me if I wanted to be a Seahawk and I said yes,” he said. “I was shocked. I didn’t think they were going to pick up another linebacker.”

Continue reading

2012 NFL Mock Mascot Draft — 4th and Downtown

26 Apr

Where would Joe go?

Today on Vandal Nation’s radio show “4th and Downtown,” hosts Madison McCord and Theo Lawson talked about which college mascots would get drafted and where they would go if NFL teams picked up mascots based on their team’s needs. Here is the audio from the segment which mock drafted picks 1-10.

Do you agree with our picks, and if not, what would you change.

Listen to the show here

Bringing the heat

18 Apr

 

After two solid defensive spring scrimmages, Vandal Nation caught up with Idaho defensive coordinator Mark Criner and seniors Aaron Grymes and Rob Siavii. Hear what they have to say about spring practice so far, senior leadership and competition for starting spots.

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