Recently in All-Sports Blog Category
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Welcome to GoPSUsports.com's live, interactive
coverage of the 2014 football season. Tune in for live blog coverage from all
12 games on the schedule. The Nittany Lions wrap up the non-conference slate with a matchup against in-state foe Temple.
Follow GoPSUsports.com's Tony Mancuso on Twitter @GoPSUTony
By Matt Allibone, GoPSUsports.com Student Staff Writer
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Entering the 2014-'15 season, there was little doubt about the type of production D.J. Newbill would give the Penn State men's basketball team.
A year after leading the team in scoring and being named second team All-Big Ten, Newbill was fully expected to lead the Nittany Lions' offense. The question was, who would complement him in the team's backcourt?
After one game, the Lions may have found the answer in true freshman Shep Garner. Against Morgan State, the 6-foot-1 guard looked mature beyond his years in a 61-48 Penn State victory.
"He is fearless," head coach Patrick Chambers said. "I'm proud of the way he competed. We obviously needed his production tonight."
In the first game of his college career, Garner not only started, he also finished second on the team with 14 points while shooting an impressive 67 percent (6-for-9 shooting) from the field.
More importantly, he jelled extremely well with the senior Newbill, as the guard duo combined for more than half of the team's points (31 of 61) and were the only Nittany Lions to make more than one 3-pointer.
Newbill, who led the tem in scoring with 17 points and added seven rebounds and three assists for good measure, praised the freshman for his assertiveness on the court.
"I told him before the game, 'you earned the right to start, so take advantage of this opportunity,'" Newbill said. "I thought he played great and he played with confidence. There's not much more to say about that."
For a player less than a year removed from high school, Garner seemed extremely relaxed about stepping into a starting role.
Although he missed his first two shots and didn't score his first basket until the 8:13 mark of the first half, the Chester, Pennsylvania, native settled down as the game went along, only missing once more the rest of the way.
"I was excited, you know, first college game was like a dream come true," Garner said. "I just couldn't wait to get on the floor with my brothers and play with them."
During a game in which the Lions struggled to shoot early on, the strong performances of both guards was greatly needed.
With less than 10 minutes remaining in the first half, the Lions trailed the Bears 16-9 and had converted just three field goals in 11:47 of playing time. In a 43 second span, Garner got on the score sheet with a nifty layup and Newbill drained a 3-pointer to narrow the deficit to 16-14.
From that point on, Penn State gained control, going on a 13 to two scoring run that led to a 31-25 halftime lead.
"It was the first game, and I feel we were just super excited," Newbill said. "We were just excited to be out there playing another team and we kind of just had to relax. It's just something we gotta work on."
In the second half, the pair stayed hot, combining for the team's first seven points of the period in a four-minute span as the Lions began to pull away.
Garner, who would finish 4-for-4 on the night on 2-point shots, hit a pair of 3-pointers and combined with Newbill to shoot 50 percent from beyond the arc.
Afterwards, the first-year player praised the senior captain for his help in preparing him for a starting role.
"I learn so much from him," Garner said. "From when I first got here, I just picked his brain all day long. I probably get annoying sometimes. He played point guard here for a whole year so I ask him every question I can to get as much information as possible."
As the year progresses, it is likely that the two guards will take turns playing on and off the ball, as Newbill has significant experience playing both point and shooting guard.
It is that kind of versatility that Chambers believes is a paramount to the team's future success. While Newbill's production is a constant, the Lions will need variety of players to perform behind him in various roles.
That's why the fourth-year coach was so happy for Garner on Friday. The freshman was handed the opportunity to prove himself and exceeded expectations.
"The kid earned the right to start because he gets it done on both ends of the floor," Chambers said. "It just shows his, and ours - as a team and a staff and a program - our confidence in him to make plays."
Garner was not the only member of his family to have a standout performance Friday night. His mother, Kim, sang the national anthem before the game.
For a player getting his first start, hearing his mother's voice was a great way to lessen the pressure.
"My mom sang the national anthem for my team in high school, so I was kind of used to it," Garner said. "At the this stage, you wouldn't think your mom would sing the national anthem. It was exciting."
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Welcome to GoPSUsports.com's live, interactive coverage of the 2014-'15 men's basketball season. Tonight, the Nittany Lions open the season against Morgan State inside the Bryce Jordan Center.
Follow GoPSUsports.com's Tony Mancuso on Twitter @GoPSUTony
By Matt Allibone, GoPSUsports.com Student Staff Writer
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa.- The past two semesters have been a whirlwind for Brett Gravatt.
switching schools, adjusting to new teammates and dealing with an injury, the
Penn State men's soccer sophomore has certainly had his hands full since last
Still, the 19-year-old believes his transition from Akron to Penn State has ultimately gone as well as possible.
"It went really smooth," Gravatt said. "The players welcomed me really well and the coaches have been really helpful and supportive."
A midfielder for the Nittany Lions, Gravatt has gotten the first two starts of his Penn State career the past two games. However, his rise from bench player to Division I starter hasn't been an easy one.
It all began last year, when the Dunn Loring, Virginia native realized he didn't want to spend the rest of his college career at Akron, where he had appeared in 11 of 22 games as a freshman.
After getting released from his scholarship, Gravatt spoke to his high school best friend, Nittany Lions backup goalie Evan Finney about potentially coming to Penn State. Finney got him in contact with head coach Bob Warming, who told Gravatt about the benefits of the university as a whole.
"I went to Akron for soccer but when I talked to coach Warming, he sold me on getting a great degree and being a part of another great program," Gravatt said. "He told me even if the soccer thing didn't work out, I'd still be getting a great education."
That was all it took to convince Gravatt that he belonged in blue and white. Still, the challenges didn't end there for the 6-foot-1 midfielder.
Looking to get accustomed to his new environment as quickly as possible, the former Zip showed up in State College early in the summer to begin training. Although things went well at first, the trouble began when he tore his meniscus.
Soon after the surgery was completed, doctors realized that his knee also contained a blood clot. The injury caused Gravatt to miss training camp and the Lions season opener against Oakland.
"It was definitely difficult," Gravatt said. "I gelled pretty well in the summer before the injury. The guys were great to me [while I was out] though. I still felt like I belonged."
Once he recovered, Gravatt was not handed a starting spot, as he needed to shake off the rust and prove he could play serious minutes for a Big Ten contender.
In Penn State's first 16 games, he received just 84 minutes of playing time in seven appearances. Finally, with the Nittany Lions playing his former squad in their regular season finale, Gravatt was given his first start.
Against Akron, the former Zip was around the ball all night, getting off three shots in a much needed 1-0 victory for Penn State.
"[Coach Warming] was hinting that I was going to start," Gravatt said. "He knew I was really excited for a game like that and that I would perform."
Since then, Gravatt started for a second time against Michigan State and is now primed to be a key performer for the Lions when the NCAA Tournament begins next week.
Gravatt credits his teammates for encouraging him when he wasn't playing. One player that was particularly helpful was the only one who has been his teammate for all of college, fellow Akron transfer Riley Grant.
Dealing with an injury would have been tough enough without the added pressure of adjusting to a new school in a completely different state. In Grant, Gravatt had both a roommate and a friend to lean on and make the transition with.
"It's been really great having Riley here," Gravatt said. "It was nice to have a familiar face when I first got here. We've had the experiences together and we're roommates now. We're very good friends."
For Grant, it was a pleasure to help his friend out during a difficult time. After all, the Copley, Ohio native may not have ended up at Penn State if it wasn't for Gravatt.
When Gravatt made his decision to become a Nittany Lion, he knew Grant was also going through the process of choosing a new school. He made sure to get his teammate in contact with Warming.
got my release, Brett always said, 'I'll talk to coach for you,'" Grant said. "
He told me how great coach [Warming] was to him and that really helped."
agreed that having Gravatt around was a huge help when he first arrived at Penn
State. Not only has his company been nice, but the determination Gravatt showed
in working his way into the lineup has been motivational as well.
"It's great [having Gravatt around] because I wouldn't have known anybody," Grant said with a laugh. "It was a whole new beginning just like it was when we started at Akron.
one of the hardest workers I know. When he was hurt or not playing he kept his
head up and just wanted to help the team and that shows how driven he is. He's
helping us now and we're going to need him."
No matter how much the team does need Gravatt in the NCAA Tournament, there is little room for error for any of the players now that they are in a do-or-die situation.
challenge is something Gravatt is looking forward to. Now that he has proven
himself in Penn State's rotation, there is nowhere to go but up.
"I want to do whatever I can to help the team," Gravatt said. "I've always been an offensive player and coach and everyone has helped me a lot with becoming a better defender."
By Tyler Feldman, GoPSUsports.com Student Staff Writer
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Already 12 games into the season, Remi Martin from Littleton, Colo., has positively impacted Penn State's defense. She's a big reason why the Blue and White are allowing just two goals per game.
Transitioning to collegiate play can be challenging, but for Martin, having junior Jordin Pardoski as her defense partner has smoothened the process.
"I've definitely learned to be a little bit more mature, communicate better, and be open to her constructive criticism," Martin said about what she's learned from Pardoski.
Martin has certainly taken a hefty load of advice from her defense partner, but she has also taught Pardoski a few things, too.
"I've learned a lot from [Martin] even though I'm older," said Pardoski. "She's a great player on and off the ice. Just communicating wise I've learned from her style of play. We play really well together on the ice, so we accommodate each other."
Having chemistry on the blue line is integral to defensive success for the Nittany Lions. Still early in the season, Martin and Pardoski have developed into one of the strongest defense pairings in the CHA.
"We mesh well because at the same time we're both defensive-minded," said Martin. "She trusts me and I trust her with the puck, so we both support each other."
It's not just her relationship with Pardoski that makes the team so special to Martin. In fact, the freshman finds it unique that she relates well with all of her teammates.
"It's really welcoming here," said Martin. "Everyone on the team I relate with individually on a different level."
Martin brings a skilled and physical presence to the team. She's blocked 12 shots in addition to tallying one assist thus far. She notes the reason for her early success is due to her communication development.
According to head coach Josh Brandwene, Martin is a "multi-dimensional defender" who balances her skills evenly in both the defensive and offensive zones. She is a strong skater with excellent vision, a hard shot, and the ability to create puck movement.
Favorite Parts of Penn State
It doesn't matter if she's on or off the ice, Martin simply enjoys being around her teammates.
"My favorite thing about Penn State is definitely being around my team because I love my team," said Martin. "And I would say coming to the rink everyday and practicing and just feeling the camaraderie with everyone on the team.
Her favorite part about Penn State is one thing, but playing in the state-of-the-art Pegula Ice Arena presents another area of campus that Martin finds attractive.
"I would definitely say the training room," Martin said about her favorite part of Pegula Ice Arena. "I go in the hot tub a lot, and I go in the ice bath a lot."
Despite being just a freshman, Martin is playing at a skill level that is progressing at a fast rate. Expect her to continue to be a dynamic mainstay on the blue line for the Nittany Lions.
Game Notes | Gameday Central | Temple Scouting Report | Coach Franklin Wednesday
Press Conference Roundup | Coach Spencer Q&A | Player Q&A Video
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Penn State (5-4, 2-4 Big Ten) will close out the non-conference schedule on Saturday when it meets intrastate foe Temple (5-4, 3-3 AAC) for a noon kick (ESPN2) inside Beaver Stadium.
The Nittany Lions enter the penultimate home game of 2014 after topping Indiana, 13-7, on the road last week. The Lions moved to 3-1 in games away from home this season thanks to a stifling effort from the defense and a record-breaking 92-yard touchdown run from Bill Belton.
Belton reached 100 yards for the first time this season in the win over the Hoosiers. The senior tailback tallied 137 yards on 16 carries during the fourth 100-yard game of his Penn State career. Belton's 92-yard scoring play was the longest rushing touchdown in Penn State Football history.
Penn State's defense again turned in a outstanding performance against Indiana last week. The Lions are ranked No. 1 in the nation against the run (85.6 ypg). Additionally, the Nittany Lions are ranked No. 3 in the nation in total defense (267.6 ypg). Penn State is No. 6 in scoring defense at 16.6 points per game. Senior linebacker Mike Hull is ranked eighth in the nation with 11.2 tackles per game.
Sophomore quarterback Christian Hackenberg continues to rank among the top signal callers in the Big Ten. He is second in the conference in passing with 245.1 passing yards per game. Hackenberg is leading the Big Ten in completions per game at 21.67. He became the eighth Penn State quarterback with 5,000 career passing yards in the Indiana game. Redshirt freshman DaeSean Hamilton is the leader in yards (761) and receptions (64) among freshmen in the nation.
Temple dropped to 5-4 overall last week with a 16-13 setback at Memphis. The Owls are led by a stout defensive unit that has forced 25 turnovers in 2014. Temple is ranked 10th in the nation in scoring defense at 18.1 points per game.
Saturday is Military Appreciation Day and will feature the "Seats for Soldiers" campaign. Nearly 6,000 tickets were purchased for the "Seats for Soldiers" program and donated to active duty and veteran military personnel and their families, which is more than double the number of tickets sold in 2013.
The game will also include the "Parade of Champions," a celebration of team and individual successes from the 2013-'14 season. Penn State won NCAA Championships in fencing, women's volleyball and wrestling, its most NCAA titles since 1999-2000. For the second consecutive year, the Nittany Lions won a school record eight Big Ten Championships.
The third annual "Stuff a Bus" food drive will take place this weekend, as well. A Blue Bus will be parked outside the Bryce Jordan Center from Friday at 12 p.m. until Sunday at 12 p.m. for donations to help the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank.
Welcome to the Gameday Preview for the week 10 matchup against Temple.
What to Watch For - Penn State
1. The running back duo of Bill Belton and Akeel Lynch combined for 184 yards and 6.3 yards per carry during last week's game against Indiana. Belton talked with the media this week about the offensive line's ability to create seams for both head and Lynch to run through in Bloomington. Head coach James Franklin said the Nittany Lions will look for more consistency again this weekend against Temple. With senior Miles Dieffenbach back in the mix for playing time in the rotation, the Nittany Lions are confident in taking another step forward.
2. Penn State's defense is among the nation's leaders in three of the four main statistical categories. The Nittany Lions have tallied 65 tackles for loss and 26 sacks in 2014. While the starting unit deserves a tremendous amount of credit for its efforts, one group deserving of more praise is the second rotation on the defensive line. Ends Carl Nassib, Brad Bars and Garrett Sickels, along with tackles Tyrone Smith, Parker Cothren and Tarow Barney, have been productive every time they have stepped onto the field. Penn State's ability to play upwards of 10 guys on the defensive line is a big key to the defense's ability to limit opponents to just 267.6 yards per game. The Lions have held seven of their nine opponents to 10-plus points below their season average and six of the nine opponents to 150-plus yards below their season average in total offense.
3. Following the Indiana game, Coach Franklin singled out true freshman Grant Haley for his efforts on the Penn State coverage teams. A contributor on defense, Haley has been a central figure for the Penn State special teams units. Haley has made 14 tackles in 2014, and he is routinely among the first guys down the field on punt coverage. Haley's motor is relentless, and he is a critical member for the Nittany Lions on special teams when it comes to open field tackling.
What to Watch For - Temple
1. Sophomore quarterback P.J. Walker is the primary playmaker for the Temple offense. Walker, who started seven games as a true freshman last season, has accounted for 14 of Temple's 22 offensive touchdowns this season. A threat with his arm and feet, Walker has thrown for 1,679 yards and rushed for 183 yards (three rushing touchdowns).
2. Temple's defense has been tremendous at forcing turnovers in 2014. The Owls have 25 forced turnovers, including 17 forced fumbles. Additionally, Temple has scored six defensive touchdowns this season. The Owls are among the nation's leaders in points off of turnovers. In nine games, Temple has scored 83 points off of turnovers (9.2 ppg off turnovers).
3. Junior linebacker Tyler Matakevich has been a superbly productive player on the Temple defense for the past three seasons. Recording 101 and 137 tackles, respectively, in his first two seasons on campus, Matakevich is well on his way to another stout season at the outside linebacker position. Matakevich has made 83 stops in 2014, and he is fifth in the nation with 7.2 solo tackles per game.
The Final Word:
Saturday's game will be a homecoming for Temple head coach Matt Rhule. After growing up in New York City, the second-year leader of the Owls moved to State College and attended State College High School when he was a junior. Rhule attended Penn State and walked on to the football team in 1994. He played four seasons at linebacker under head coach Joe Paterno. Rhule tallied a sack against Temple in the 1997 matchup between the two teams at the Meadowlands. Rhule earned a degree in political science from Penn State in 1997. He coached against the Nittany Lions as an assistant under former Temple head coach Al Golden, but this is his first trip back to Happy Valley as a head coach of the Owls. Penn State and Temple are slated to meet for the 44th time in the season-opener for 2015. Kickoff is set for 12:01 on Saturday with Beth Mowins, Joey Galloway and Paul Carcaterra on the ESPN2 broadcast.
Follow GoPSUsports.com's Tony Mancuso on Twitter @GoPSUTony
By Astrid Diaz, GoPSUsports.com Student Staff Writer
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - In less than twenty-four hours the Penn State men's and women's cross country teams will gear up to run at one of this season's most important meets yet, the Mid-Atlantic Regional.
Head coach John Gondak and the Nittany Lions are thrilled about the opportunity to host the region-wide event and they are looking forward to seeing some of the top teams the Mid-Atlantic has to offer gather in Happy Valley.
"I really look forward to providing an opportunity for the 32 teams that are coming in this weekend and giving them an outstanding experience," said Gondak. "I know [the meet has] been on [the team's] mind and I know they're excited."
Anticipating the Competition
The trails and locker rooms have been murmuring all week as excitement for the race sets in for student-athletes and coaches.
This Friday, the Nittany Lions will look to qualify for the 2014 NCAA National Championships and they're confident in their training, which has set stage for this race.
Coming off a record-breaking third-place finish at the Big Ten Championships two weeks ago, the team's confidence on the men's side is at an all-time high.
"We're excited to get back in the game with this weekend's meet. [Big Tens] was a new burst of energy for the team and to bring that into regionals is exciting," said fifth-year senior Matt Fischer.
The women's side has performed with tremendous consistency this season in their pack strategy and concentration. This weekend looks to be no different.
"We have a really positive attitude going into Regionals and we're looking for some good turnouts," said senior Katie Rodden.
As top-ranked teams like No. 2 Georgetown (women) and No. 7 Villanova (men) trickle into town, Fischer and Rodden will look to edge the competition with their experience.
Both seniors are contenders for a positive result after showing continuous improvement at all regional competitions within the last four years and both have been preparing persistently as they hope to leave their mark in their final home outing.
"We just want to do what we need to do to get to the NCAA meet. We want to perform well and use that to get to NCAAs and kill it there too," said Fischer.
"I definitely want to be All-Region again and [I want] to help put our team in a position to make it to Nationals," said Rodden.
Defending the Home Turf
This weekend, Gondak marks his ninth Mid-Atlantic Regional competition as a part of the Penn State program and even after almost a decade of coaching the Nittany Lions, championship racing still sparks adrenaline.
"Every time we can host a championship event at home, it's thrilling," said Gondak. "As soon as the Big Ten [Championship] meet finished, the excitement surrounding the Regional meet has been building since then."
With this year's race location set for Penn State's home turf at the Blue-White Golf courses, the team will compete in a convenient and fun atmosphere.
"That's an exciting factor to this year's competition. We feel like it's an advantage to know that we're really familiar with the course. It's a nice thing to have and I think it will work in our favor," said Fischer.
"The fact that we're able to train on the golf course on a regular basis allows our student-athletes to have a really good feel for [the course]. It gives them an advantage but at the end of the day everybody is out there racing and racing hard and we've got some extremely talented teams in our region," said Gondak. "We're looking forward to going out and doing the best we can do."
The senior student-athletes running on Friday like Lauren Mills, Matt Fischer, and Katie Rodden avoid talk of leaving behind the blue and white as they approach the final stages of the season, but they're all aware of the opportunities that surround them.
As for Fischer and Rodden, they anticipate their last time stepping up to their home start line to be memorable and exhilarating.
"The mentality going in [we're thinking] it's a qualifying meet. I personally want to do whatever I can to help the team...Go out there and stay relaxed. [I want to] just help myself [and the team] have the best race [we] can," said Fischer.
The younger Nittany Lions are bringing out their best post-season strategies to ensure the team has the best outcome it's capable of and they're excited to compete against some of the greatest runners in the area of Friday.
"As I always say, I'm not big on predictions...I'm just hoping they can go out there and put themselves in a position to qualify for the National Championship," said Gondak.
The event will bring an exciting atmosphere to campus full of fans, athletes, free giveaways, and upbeat music. Festivities kick-off with the women's 6K at noon followed by the men's 10K race at 1 p.m.
By Mike Esse, GoPSUsports.com Student Staff Writer
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - After months of practice and an exhibition game, the long-awaited season opener for the Penn State Lady Lions takes place Friday at the Bryce Jordan Center against Towson. With a team filled with youth and talent, excitement for the season opener is extremely high for Lady Lion coaches and players.
The noon tip begins the Preseason WNIT for Penn State, a unique way to start the season in a tournament format.
"It's a great experience opportunity for our group," said assistant coach Kia Damon. "We're still gelling and coming together and figuring out our roles and how all of this is going to come together on the court in competitive situations. The more games we can play, especially early, the more we can get a read on where we need to go moving forward."
Penn State has only participated in the Preseason WNIT one other time in program history back in 2002 when they finished in second place. Head coach Coquese Washington said that the format of the tournament presents a lot of benefits for her young team that has limited experience in an NCAA postseason tournament situation.
The tournament is pieced together just like postseason tournaments: the more you win, the more you play. Washington said having that mindset is a great benefit for her young team.
"It allows us to focus on one game at a time," Washington said. "We don't know what's going on in the other brackets all we can control and even focus on is Towson. With a young team that is pretty helpful to focus on one game at a time. You talk about it and you say it but kids start to look at the schedule but for us, you can't look ahead."
Washington hopes a long sustained run in the tournament can be a teaching point come March when the conference and postseason tournaments come around.
"If we are fortunate enough to advance through the tournament we know we are going to play some really talented teams every round," she said. "That's the biggest benefit I see you are playing in postseason mentality from the very beginning of the season."
As for the season's first opponent, Towson provides unique challenges for the Lady Lions according to Damon. Traditionally, the Tigers have switched from zone and man defenses, providing a little more preparation for the Lady Lions.
Damon said the coaches have told the players about the difficulty in attacking such a defense, but at the end of the day the Lady Lion brand of basketball they have implemented is the only style that will bring success.
"It can be a little tricky to attack so you have to be on your p's and q's and be alert," Damon said. "We're going to do what we normally do and execute our game plan and see where that gets us. We are faced pace advantage basketball and we are known for playing in transition is what we are known for and we're going to continue that."
A Lady Lion win Friday would bring a quick turn around, as they would play Sunday at 2 p.m. at the Bryce Jordan Center.
By Alexis Shelton, GoPSUsports.com
Student Staff Writer
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Penn State student-athletes have set a standard of excellence and a benchmark for success on the field and in the classroom.
In the latest NCAA report of Graduation Success Rates (GSR), Penn State student-athletes continue to graduate well above their peers nationwide. This year, according to the NCAA's annual study of institutions across the nation, Penn State posted a GSR of 89 percent. That 89 percent by Penn State is compared to an average of 82 percent from all other Division I institutions.
Academically and performance-wise, student welfare and athletic development are key factors in Penn State's consistent success on and off the field.
The athletic department is committed to continue adding more resources to keep student-athletes at the top of the ranks in many aspects of intercollegiate athletics.
iPads Distributed to Every Student-Athlete
One area of enhancement was the distribution of iPads beginning with the 2014-'15 school year. Back in August, the department announced that it would provide more than 800 iPads to all student-athletes across 31 varsity teams.
Associate Athletic Director Charmelle Green talked about how the intercollegiate athletics mobile technology program came to life.
"A committee was formed consisting of student-athletes, coaches, faculty, athletic administrators, educational technology services and Apple educators," Green said.
Green said that they developed a program that would allow the student-athletes to utilize the technology and the iPads to enhance their development learning skills. She said that this would also provide the ability for the student-athletes to communicate with faculty and classmates while on the road, as well as staying involved and engaged with classes while managing a very robust travel schedule.
"That's what this program was intended to do. It's an educationally focused program," said Green. "The committee identified applications that would enhance learning skills, and effective study habits as well to assist student-athletes with organizing work and other obligations."
There are a lot of exciting features and programs that are featured on iPads. Penn State Intercollegiate Athletics carefully took into consideration what exactly athletes would need in order to succeed.
"We thought about what sort of apps and links we wanted to install on the iPads before they were distributed to the student-athletes," Green said. "We wanted to make sure that we installed quick links to websites student-athletes use everyday, such as Angle and intercollegiate athletics."
This is a program that provides policies and the procedures that the student-athletes must follow. It provides them with information on how to maximize the use of the iPad for educational purposes.
"One of the apps that we were really keen on was the note-taking, notability app," Green said. "Our student-athletes expressed a need for this app, which allows them to take and organize notes. It would help them learn retain information."
For women's soccer freshman Emily Ogle, the iPads are indeed a wonderful tool to use.
"School-wise it's great," Ogle said. "You can pull up stuff on Angel while you're in class. It's really good for doing your homework on it. It's also good for traveling, and carrying that instead of a laptop takes away so much weight."
Green also added that the iPads can be used for everyday personal use, as well.
"They can still use social network sites like Twitter and Facebook and such," Green said.
A big smile came across the face of Green when asked about the feedback of the iPads.
"We've got nothing but praise and terrific feedback from the student-athletes," Green said. "I know of one athlete who broke her wrist and she isn't able to write or take notes in class. Thanks to the iPads however, she's able to angle the iPad allowing her to type with a cast."
Of all the stories she's heard, Green said that the best stories have been about the athletes who are able to communicate with their families through FaceTime.
"Some of them aren't able to go home all the time, so when I hear feedback that many are able to communicate more often through video calling, that really makes me feel great about the benefits of this program," said Green.
Additionally, the student-athletes are also able to watch practice video and game film on the software.
"For us, our coaches are putting our videos on box.com, which was an app they gave us," said women's soccer player Kindrah Kohne. "That helps us get video in and get to see what the coaches expect us to do and watch what we did wrong during the Friday games so that we can apply it for the Sunday games."
Finally, Green mentioned how the iPads aide students who are not able to utilize a personal computer for college.
Refueling Stations Up and Running
Another great addition to the athletic department was a concept of supplying refueling stations for student-athletes. Opening on Oct. 30, the refueling stations were added to multiple locations throughout the campus.
"The fueling stations are fuel and calories that we provide free of charge to the student-athlete," said Director of Sports Nutrition Kristine Clark, PhD.
"Practice facilities, locker rooms and even athletic training and weight rooms is where they will be," said Clark. "They'll even be here at our Sports Nutrition office in Rec Hall."
Clark said that the stations will feature a wide range of foods and beverages.
"They'll provide nutrients, such as carbohydrates and proteins that assist in supplementing the athletes diet with calories they need for before an after training," said Clark.
"I believe that it will really help out with their daily skills development and performance in class," Green said. "Also, their performances during games and practices will improve as well. Athletes burn so much energy throughout the day, but with these stations, we're helping them stay energized all day, so that they don't get tired."
Clark spoke to the importance of enhanced caloric intake.
"The fueling stations will likely provide more calories for an athlete which will result in more energy at practice," Clark said. "They'll also provide good proteins and carbohydrates after the athlete is done working out. That will enable the athlete to be able to recover more efficiently and also be able to enable more muscle at a faster rate."
The refueling stations have a wide variety of more than 38 foods. The stations feature carbohydrate foods, including cereal, fruits and vegetables. They also include snack foods, such as pretzels and granola bars; and a range of proteins foods, like milk, yogurt, hummus and different types of jerky.
"The refueling stations are awesome," said Ogle. "It's so refreshing to have snacks because we're going all the time, we have so much going on and sometimes we just need to grab a little snack. It's really helpful."