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Former Kitsap Sun sports editor Chuck Stark shares insight, laughter, news, views and analysis of Kitsap sports and beyond.
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Archive for the ‘Larry Dixon’ Category

UW 2-0, but what does it mean?

Saturday, September 6th, 2014

Played in the Keith Carden Memorial Handball Tournament today at the Bremerton YMCA, so I missed the UW-EWU football game.

Between matches, I followed updates on Twitter and the outcome didn’t really surprise me that much. I figured Eastern was the most dangerous of Washington’s first four opponents — Hawaii, Eastern, Illinois and Georgia State (in that order). The Eagles’ offense might be the best Washington faces all season. And, yes, I’m including Oregon.

Still, the 59-52 victory raises questions, just as Washington’s 17-16 win over Hawaii did the previous week. For the second week in a row, we’re left wondering if this team is any good. As I type this, Oregon State is leading Hawaii 38-14 in the fourth quarter. (Update: Hawaii came back to make a game out of it, losing 38-30).

The Huskies have got some serious work to do on defense, which is where they were supposed to be strong. Linebacker Shaq Thompson, who didn’t make much of an impact in Hawaii, defensive lineman Danny Shelton and cornerback Marcus Peters were all preseason Pac-12 first-team selections. Defensive end Hau’li Kikaha joined that trio on the Bronco Nagurksi Award list, which goes to the nation’s top defender.

Peters was hit with a 15-yard penalty for taunting that led to an Eastern Washington touchdown and 45-44 lead for the Eagles in the second half. UW coach Chris Petersen benched Peters for the rest of the game.

“That was easy,” Petersen told the media after the game. “I’m not into stupid penalties. That wasn’t even a decision (to bench Peters).”

Ten wins (my prediction) doesn’t look good right now, but college football is a funny, unpredictable animal. By Week 7, when Washington travels to Eugene to play Oregon, the Huskies might be a different team. Thompson did have 14 tackles and a sack against Eastern. He also had a 57-yard rushing TD. Shelton had 12 tackles, including four sacks, and Kikaha had six tackles and a sack. The secondary remains a work in progress.

Give Eastern credit, though. Coach Beau Baldwin, the former Curtis HS/Central Washington QB who seems ready to parlay his offensive wizardry into a Division I head-coaching job, might be coaching one of the top quarterbacks in the country in Vernon Adams, Jr. Adams torched the Huskies for 475 yards and 7 touchdowns.

Oregon must be licking its chops in anticipating of their Oct. 18 game against Washington in Eugene.

Hell, Illinois and Georgia State are probably drooling, too.

Illinois sophomore QB Wes Lunt passed for 3 TDs and 456 yards in a 42-34 win over Western Kentucky on Saturday. He threw 4 TDs passes in a 28-17 win over Youngstown State the week before. Georgia State (1-1) lost to New Mexico State 34-31 after slipping past Abilene Christian 38-37 in a game where QB Nick Arbuckle passed for 4 TDs and 413 yards.

Sure, Washington put up 59 points and didn’t commit a turnover against Eastern. But Sam Houston State, which lost 56-0 to LSU on Saturday, scored 35 points against EWU the week before so you need to put things in perspective.

The Dawgs might be off to a 2-0 start, but even the biggest UW fan has to admit that it’s not the kind of start that gets you dreaming about big things down the road.

ALSO

Olympic High grad Larry Dixon got his senior year at Army off to a good start, carrying 20 times for a career-high 174 yards and 2 TDs in the Black Knight’s 47-39 win over Buffalo. Army is at Stanford next Saturday (2 p.m., Pac-12 Network).

Bremerton’s Jim Wainwright and Loren Schaller of  Gig Harbor beat Port Townsend’s Chris Cardinal and Bremerton’s Jane Erlandsen in the finals of the Carden Memorial Tournament. Yours truly and Gil Mendoza, the deputy superintendent of schools in our state, won the consolation bracket after getting out butts kicked by Wainwright and Schaller in the first round.

A foursome that included Connor Robbins and Scott Sargent (sorry I missed the other two guys) shot 19-under in a scramble format at Gold Mountain’s Cascade Course on Friday during the Yacht Club Broiler’s tournament. The round included three eagles.

“Percy Harvin is so fast it looks like he’s playing in a video games compared to the other guys on the field.” — Evan Somerheiser of the Bremerton rock band Power, and a huge Seahawks’ fan

 

 

 


Collegians: Dixon, Fullington head small list of Kitsapers playing college football; Becca Schoales starting for UW soccer squad

Friday, September 13th, 2013

Kitsap County high schools have not had a lot of success in the postseason when it comes to football, so it probably isn’t surprising that it doesn’t produce a lot of big-time college football players.

I might be missing somebody — please let me know if I am — but by my count, we’ve got four locals playing Division 1 football: Junior Larry Dixon, starting fullback at Army (1-1) from Olympic High; senior John Fullington from North Mason, starting right guard at Washington State (1-1); Kingston tight end Sam Byers is a freshman in eligibility at the Air Force Academy but is currently not on the varsity roster, and offensive lineman Austin Kanouse from South Kitsap is an invited walk-on at Washington State.

You can watch Dixon on TV when the Black Knights take on No. 5 Stanford on Saturday, Sept. 14, at West Point. CBS airs the game at 9 a.m. Fullington and the Cougars will get some air time (3;30 p.m., Pac-12 Networks) against Southern Utah.

Running back Dominic Boddie (South Kitsap/Washington) and wide receiver Brett McDonald (Central Kitsap/Washington State) were walk-ons a year ago, but are not playing this fall.

The Kitsap area hasn’t produced many D3 or NAIA college football players either.

Defensive back Isaiah Davis is the only NCAA D2 player that I’m aware of, and it looks like the South Kitsap grad is going to have a big year.

Davis, a sophomore, had an 89-yard punt return for a touchdown called back because of penalty and he had 10 tackles in a season-opening 21-14 loss to Texas A&M University-Kingsville last week in Ellensburg. Davis transferred from Eastern Washington to Central last year and earned second-team All-Great Northwest Athletic Conference honors as a freshman. He started in basketball two years at South and cleared 6-foot, 10-inches in the high jump.

Davis is the only Kitsap County athlete on the football roster at Central Washington. There are none at Eastern Washington.

Quarterback AJ Milyard, kicker Kyler Gracey and linebacker Ben Berkimer, all freshman from North Kitsap, are at Whitworth. Gracey kicked an extra point in a 36-7 win over St. Scolastica from Duluth, Minn.

Colin Stone, a freshman kicker from Kingston, is at the University of Puget Sound, which opens its season on Sept. 14 at home against Chapman.

Austin Cook, a junior defensive end from South Kitsap, and Austin Miller, a freshman offensive lineman from Central Kitsap, are playing for the Pacific Lutheran Lutes, who open on the road on Saturday (Sept. 14) against Cal Lutheran in Thousand Oaks, Calif.

Kaleb Nelson, a red-shirt freshman linebacker from South Kitsap, is at Western Oregon (0-1), which is at Central after losing to Eastern Washington 43-14.

Kyle Lanoue, a sophomore from South Kitsap, is a starting defensive lineman at Eastern Oregon. He had four tackles with a sack in a season-opening 57-13 loss to Portland State and 10 tackles and another sack in a 23-7 loss to Montana Tech. Two former Bainbridge Spartans are at Eastern Oregon: senior d-lineman Kyle Petherman, and freshman running back Matt Stone. Another Bainbridge grad, freshman outsider linebacker Paimon Jaberi, is at Willamette (0-0).

Sam Gisicki from Olympic High is a sophomore wide receiver for the Pacific Boxers (0-1).

Four South Kitsap athletes are playing at Minot State in North Dakota: Junior receiver Leon LaDeaux (transfer from Central Washington was suspended a game after being among five players arrested for possession of marijuana late last month), freshman kicker/punter Aaron LaDeaux, freshman defensive back Bryce Broome and freshman OL/DL lineman Damien Medeiros. Minot lost 29-0 to Concordia University in St. Paul, Minn., and hosts Augustana College of Sioux Falls, S.D., Saturday, Sept. 14.

I’m realize that I’m probably missing somebody. If you know of a local athlete playing college football, or any college sport for that matter, shoot me an email or put up a comment. Here’s a short list of some local collegians who are playing soccer at four-year schools:

WOMEN’S SOCCER

Becca Schoales, freshman from South Kitsap, is already making an impact at the University of Washington. Schoales, a forward, had both goals in a 2-0 win over Central Michigan on Sept. 9 and appears to be a fixture in the starting lineup for the Huskies (2-4-0 going into Friday’s game against Seattle University). Paige Serwold, freshman defender/midfielder from Central Kitsap, is also playing for the Huskies in a reserve role.

Brianna Smallidge, a sophomore from South Kitsap, is the starting goalkeeper for Seattle U (2-1-2).

Junior midfielder Riley Dopps, a two-year letterman at Seattle Pacific, has been coming off the bench for the Falcons (2-1-0).

Emma Vucic from Bainbridge was a first-team All-Northwest Conference forward as a freshman for Linfield and she’s helped the Wildcats get off to a 3-0 start. Jalyn Halstead, a sophomore midfielder from Olympic, also starts for Linfield.

Sophomore Delanee Nilles and freshman Becca Cates, both midfielders from North Kitsap, are playing at Western Washington (2-0-0).

North Kitsap grad Lindsey Foster, a sophomore midfielder, is at Whitworth (3-1). She started 13 games as a freshman. UPDATE: Unfortunately, I’ve been told Foster tore her ACL last week and will miss the rest of the season.

Kaitlyn Sargent and Jessica Haga, freshmen from Klahowya, are playing for Central Washington (1-2-0). Haga’s started all three games as a defender, and Sargent has made one start as a defender.

Abby Neil, a freshman defender, is playing at PLU (2-2-0), and Micaylla O’Leary, a freshman midfielder from Olympic, is at St. Martin’s (1-1-0).

Bainbridge’s Hallie Swan is a junior midfielder at Whitman.

MEN’S SOCCER

Seattle Pacific midfielder Jordan Kollars, a freshman from Central Kitsap, had an assist in a 2-0 win over Dixie State. The Falcons are 1-1-0.

Paul Brumm, a junior forward from Olympic, and Matthew Hust, junior midfielder from Kingston, are reserves at Pacific Lutheran (4-0).

Sebastian Lyons, a junior midfielder from Port Townsend, plays for Evergreen State College (1-1-1).

Senior Sam Selisch from Port Townsend is a starting forward at Whitworth (1-0-1).

Once again, I’m pretty sure this is an incomplete list. If you know of athletes playing at four-year schools, let me know. Email chuckstark00@gmail.com or let The Sun sports staff know by emailing sunsports@kitsapsun.com.


Friday links (Army’s Larry Dixon featured in Wall Street Journal), opinions and a book plug

Friday, December 7th, 2012

College Football’s Most Pummeled Man: According to this story in the Wall Street Journal, it’s Larry Dixon, the Olympic High grad and starting fullback for Army. Army takes on Navy Saturday (12 p.m., CBS) jn Philadelphia.

A review of every Army offensive play in 2012 shows that Dixon has gotten a fake handoff 190 times this season. The cadet has been tackled without the ball 95 times, compared with the 129 times he has been wrestled to the ground with the pigskin.

In five of the 10 games he’s played this season, he has been tackled more often without the ball than with it. “Those are long days,” Dixon said.

Army-Navy series: Navy leads the series 56-49-7. Navy won 27-21 last year and has won 10 straight over Army.

UFC is coming to Seattle Saturday night. As big as the MMA scene has become, I’m still a boxing guy. I’ll be more interested Pacquiao-Marquez IV. Manny Pacquiao and Juan Manuel Marquez mix it up on Saturday in Las Vegas. Pacquio is 2-0-1 against Marquez. Pacquio is 35 now, and this probably won’t be an epic fight, but it’s the best boxing has to offer these days and I still find it more intriguing than the MMA event that will be televised by FOX from KeyArena. The main event matches Benson Henderson and Nate Diaz.

Les Carpenter of Yahoo! Sports writes about Russell Wilson’s obsession with film study.  Do you suppose the rookie quarterback’s agent is negotiating with Russell Athletic for an endorsement contract? Maybe Wilson Sporting Goods?

More on Wilson: If the Seahawks didn’t pick Wilson with their third-round pick, he likely would have ended up as a backup to Michael Vick, Andrew Luck or Robert Griffin III, writes Adam Schefter of ESPN.com.

Just wondering: If RGIII is so good, why hasn’t anybody signed RGI and RGII?

Not only have I not missed the NHL at all, but it just dawned on me that I’m not paying much attention to the NBA either. I try to keep track of Bremerton’s Marvin Williams and how he’s doing with the Utah Jazz, but that’ s about it. That said, I will be watching when the playoff arrive. And when Seattle gets another team — and it will — I will get to my share of the games. The NBA, of all sports, is the best sport to watch in person, especially if you’re fortunate enough to have a seat close to the court. Unless, of course, you’re going to a San Antonio Spurs game and coach Gregg Popovich decides to rest his stars.

West Coast League president Ken Wilson, who broadcast 70-plus Mariners’ game the last two seasons, visited Bremerton this week and talked to  the Kitsap Athletic Roundtable. He was Dave Niehaus’ original partner in Seattle, and went on to have a pretty impressive and interesting career as an MLB and NHL announcer. He called Pete Rose’s 4192nd hit that broke Ty Cobb’s all time record. He’s called three perfect games (Kenny Rogers, Rangers, 1994; Phillip Humber, White Sox, 2012; and, Felix Hernandez, Mariners, 2012). He worked the games when George Brett got his 3,000th hit and Gaylord Perry won his 300th game. He was in Baltimore when Cal Ripken tied Lou Gehrig’s record for consecutive games played.

Greg Johns of mlb.com writes about the Mariners’ possible pursuit of free-agent outfielders Michael Bourn and Nick Swisher. I think the M’s ought to zero in on Swisher. He’s hit 20-plus homers for eight straight years and seems like a good fit for any clubhouse. Forget about Josh Hamilton. Swisher’s 32 and he can be the M’s starter in left field for the next five years. Bourn makes sense, too, because he can run and the M’s need a legit stolen base threat, but he’s 29 so he’s already peaked as a base stealer. His best years might be behind him.

John McGrath of the Tacoma News Tribune (you can read his stuff in our print editions from time to time) writes about Mike Gastineau, who signed off from KJR radio after 21 years.

Prediction: Seattle 27, Cardinals 10. Arizona’s defense is nasty, but the offense is a mess. Kent Somers of USA Today writes:

“John Skelton returns to quarterback the Cards. Skelton takes over for Ryan Lindley, who took over for Skelton, who took over for Kevin Kolb, who took over for Skelton, who was injured in the season opener against Seattle. … The Cardinals’ quarterback position is not a carousel, it’s spinning like a centrifuge.”

Finally, the book plug: Some of you know of Tom Kelly. I met him when he was a sports writer with the Seattle Times. He now writes a Homes column that runs in The Kitsap Sun’s advertising section. He’s also written a new book which might be a good holiday present. It’s called Cold Crossover, and the Bremerton ferry run is an important part of the book.

He’s offering Sun readers a free Kindle downlead of the book. Look for it at the bottom of his column on Monday, Dec. 10, and Tuesday, Dec. 11.

Here’s Kelly’s capsule of the book:

Linnbert “Cheese” Oliver, hard-luck high school basketball hero in the Northwest town of North Fork, is missing on a late-night Bremerton ferry. And for real estate agent Ernie Creekmore, his father figure, friend and former coach, the news hits hard. Ernie’s suffered too much loss and pain in his life — his wife, a state basketball championship, a mysterious medical malady — and he just can’t accept the idea that Cheese might have taken his own life. Working with sheriff’s detective Harvey Johnston, Ernie uses his contacts in real estate and hoops to trace Cheese’s movements. Meanwhile, hints at possible foul play turn up in pieces of North Fork’s rough-and-tumble history in fishing, logging and railroading, and the past and the present violently collide in a series of heart-stopping moments that peel back layers of greed, secrets and twisted family ties that refuse to stay buried.

Have a good weekend.


Larry Dixon: An inside look at the life of a football player at West Point

Wednesday, September 5th, 2012

I can’t recommend highly enough this New York Times story about Larry Dixon, the former Olympic High football star who is starting his second year at West Point. Dixon will be the starting fullback for the Black Knights, who open the season at San Diego State on Saturday.

Click here to read the story.

It’s an excerpt from the “Soldiers First: Duty, Honor, Country, and Football at West Point” and details what a plebe — in this case, the story focuses on Dixon — has to go through at the academy.


Available on Kindle