Archive | November, 2010

Keeping the dream alive

21 Nov

Logan, UT — Neither rain, nor sleet, nor snow nor sideways rain could put a damper on the University of Idaho Vandal football team, which fought off not only the inclement weather but also the Utah State Aggies to keep their bowl hopes alive in a 28-6 victory on enemy turf.

“We’ve got a football team that had a lot of fun playing the game again and that means a lot,” Akey said. “We’re a wildcard playoff team, we need three, we’ve got one down and two to go.”

Akey took the field in a warm parka, and gas heaters were positioned by both benches to keep the gnawing cold away, as the weather turned progressively worse in Logan. The game kicked off with 40 mile-per-hour gusting winds, which turned quickly to horizontal rain and finally to a blizzard that covered the Merlin-Olson Field.

Idaho wide receiver Eric Greenwood said he was excited to play in such weather, saying he was used to playing in rain and sleet, but football in a full blizzard was new to him.

“When we first came out is started to drizzle, and I’m used to playing in that from western Washington,” Greenwood said. “The snow was kinda different though, I’d never played in snow — I enjoyed it.”

Through it all, the Vandals held tough in a must win game. The Vandals need to win their final three games to become bowl eligible, and  Idaho took steps in the right direction, displaying the kinds of things that have been missing from their game of late.

“That was one of the better defensive performances we’ve had,” said Idaho senior defensive end Aaron Lavarias. “It was a tough stretch we had these past few weeks and I thought (today) we played pretty dang good.”

The Vandals forced turnovers, put pressure on Utah State quarterback Diondre Borel, causing two interceptions and recording one sack, and the Vandals limited the Aggies to 242 total offensive yards.

“That was our game plan going in,” Lavarias said. “We thought he (Borel) was the key to their offense and I thought he get much going tonight — we really executed out game plan well.”

The Vandals got off to a slow start, as the Aggies, playing at home for the last time this year, as well as having a chance to clinch a season-best five-game winning season, brought a fearless effort that overwhelmed the Vandals. Continue reading

Photo Gallery: Idaho men’s basketball versus Portland

21 Nov

The Vandal men’s basketball squad allowed a big second-half run by an opposing team for the second game in a row, and the outcome of a 66-53 loss to Portland was the result. The Vandals lost at home in the confines of the Memorial Gym for the first time since coach Don Verlin took control of the team. Under Verlin, the team was perfect in defending their home turf, going 9-0.

Photographer Kate Kucharzyk was at the game and snapped some shots of the action. Hats off to Kate, and we hope you enjoy.

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Vandal Men’s Basketball blog Live tonight!

20 Nov

It’s the beginning of fall recess on the University of Idaho campus but our sports teams are still competing. Tonight the Vandal Men’s basketball team takes on the University of Portland Pilots at 7:05 p.m. in Memorial Gym. Idaho is 1-1 on the 2010 campaign. The Vandals lost the border battle with the Washington State Cougars on Tuesday night 88-71. The Pilots come to Moscow with a 3-1 record after losing to Kentucky 89-75  on Friday Night. We’ll have the play-by-play of tonight’s game starting around 6:30 p.m. PT here on Vandal Nation. We hope you can join us!  The live blog can be found here at:

Report: Hawaii to MWC in football, Big West in all others

18 Nov

(UPDATE 9:57) Looking at scheduling, of interest to Idaho is that with Hawaii in the mix, BSU has one extra game it can schedule…could that game be reserved for a continuance of the UI/BSU rivalry?

(UPDATE 9:44)  Official response to the situation from the words of the MWC — “The Mountain West Conference Board of Directors has authorized Commissioner Craig Thompson to begin discussions with the University of Hawai`i regarding possible membership in the sport of football only.”

Dirting up the water even more. Doesn’t sounds like a finalized deal, but MWC is looking into a possibility. What this would mean is that MWC would have to change their bylaws, as currently they can only accept schools that perticipate in all sports. Sounds like MWC is considering making the change…

PS. that sound you heard was Air Force collectively screaming in anger and agony.

(UPDATE  9:30) More strangeness and mixed signals coming from MWC, which says it has authorized Thompson to discuss expansion with Hawaii…yet from the presser, Hawaii said it was all but a done deal. Are wires getting crossed?

(UPDATE 9:29) We needed a few minutes to gather out heads around this one…and it hasn’t done much good. Our analysis–

  • Hawaii has no invite to MWC, just a mutual desire…so why call press conference to announce their desire to join MWC without a deal in place. Hawaii said they are entering “final negotiations”…but what does that mean exactly?  Why not wait, finalize the move, and announce.
  • Also, a huge ‘up yours Benson and WAC’ message being sent by Hawaii, as they announced this to their fans first. The oddity that was this presser will be the first Benson will hear about this move.
  • We find this odd…the WAC has supported Hawaii, through expensive travel and all, and Hawaii has been happy (or so we though) with the WAC. Why go through this trouble to stir up animosity?
  • Not everyone is happy with the move. Football goes to MWC, but all other sports go to Big West, and UH basketball coach isn’t happy about it.
  • To sum it up — the presser left more questions than answers.

(UPDATE 9:13 pm) Wow…we have entered bizzaro world. UH calling a press conference confirming…well, that they are interested in joining MWC, and the MWC is interested in them, but there is no invite or offer to speak of yet…

Also, UH has NOT informed the WAC or comish Benson before this press conference of theirs. Stunningly gutsy, and *editorial* stupid move by UH. After all the support given to the by the WAC, and their public distaine of Nevada and Fresno leaving (remember the traitor comments?). Hypocrisy!!

(UPDATE 8:53) Follow the UH press conference at Conversly, we’ll be tweeting the goods @vandalnation

(UPDATE) We’ve gotten reports that WAC comish. Karl Benson has not been informed of the move as of just a few minutes ago (8:22 local time).

Well, the headline really says it all — reports flying around the conference that Hawaii is finally making the move and leaving the WAC. UH has scheduled a press conference for 7pm local time, presumably to announce the move. We’ll update once we have the official confirmation, meanwhile follow the latest happenings on our twitter at @vandalnation.

Hawaii is the WAC”s longest-standing member, being a part of the conference for 32 years. Should Hawaii accept, the top four schools in the WAC will have left in the span of a few months, with Hawaii joining Boise State, Fresno State and Nevada in the MWC.

With Hawaii out of the picture, the WAC’s future becomes less certain and begs the question: who is the next to jump ship? Could SJSU, NMSU or even Idaho be next to follow. Suddenly inviting UTSA and Texas State seems like a lost cause…

Photo Gallery: Men’s basketball vs Eastern Oregon

15 Nov

The University of Idaho men’s basketball squad found themselves in a real batter against the No. 18 NAIA school, hosting Eastern Oregon in their season opener. Photographer Kate Kucharzyk was there the entier way, nabbing shots of the Vandals in action.

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Photo Gallery: Women’s basketball and volleyball

15 Nov

Double-header of photo action with women’s basketball and volleyball, both of which had a great weekend.

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photo gallery: Idaho Vandals vs. Boise State

15 Nov

BSU put the smackdown on Idaho, but that didn’t stop photographer Kate Kucharzyk from snapping some sweet shots. Enjoy!

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