WKU’s at-large case was undone by five Quadrant 3 losses. Those included road defeats at Ohio (RPI No. 204), Texas-San Antonio (RPI No. 186) and Alabama-Birmingham (RPI No. 155) and home losses to Missouri State (RPI No. 136) and Belmont (RPI No. 81).
The Hilltoppers went 4-6 in Quadrant 1 and 2 games. Three of WKU’s Quadrant 2 defeats – at home against Middle Tennessee (RPI No. 33), against Marshall in the C-USA title game and at Wisconsin (RPI No. 113) – came by a combined six points.
This year’s spring practice is starting earlier and stretching longer, with 15 practices spread over five weeks, instead of condensed into three weeks, as ODU did last year. Each practice will be longer, Wilder said – and harder.
“We feel like we can do that, with a lot of veteran players and the amount of guys back,” he said. “There’s going to be a lot of competition all across the board. When you come off of a season where you don’t go to a bowl game, every spot is up for grabs.
“We’re healthy right now, we’re going to develop some positions and we’re really excited to get started.”
The weather was awful, with temperatures in the upper 30s and winds whipping a light rain. Despite the conditions, Lawry looked like the same player who bounced off tacklers and outsprinted safeties for 4,080 career yards, the most by a Virginia Football Bowl Subdivision player.
“I think he really helped himself today,” said Ed Wasielewski, his agent, who 13 years ago founded the Philadelphia-based EMG Sports, which represents players in several sports.
“The feedback we heard from scouts was that he had a good day.”
You can’t imagine this today: The Herd drew 8,755 per home game, even outdrawing the folks up north. And those crowds included a student section worthy of its seating, a savage bunch with a few hundred perched behind the visitors’ bench.
And yes, the students had their targets, unlike today’s milquetoast millennials.
Public Enemy No. 1? Virginia Military Institute’s Gay Elmore.
Yes, the same man who earned some face time Saturday night, sitting among the green-clads and calmly watching son Jon drop 27-foot bombs on the Hilltoppers. (Upon learning when I went to school, Jon asked me about the taunting. With laughter, I said merely, “It’s all true.”)
Kermit Davis may not have made the NCAA Tournament, but he led Middle Tennessee State to a strong season. Now, he might be on the move.
According to Jim Dunaway of WJOX 94.5 FM in Birmingham, Ala., Ole Miss is “95 percent done” with hiring Davis as its next coach. Andy Kennedy resigned as Rebels coach last month.