Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Tigers finish 19th in men's tennis

Courtesy of Auburn sports information department

AUBURN - The Auburn men’s tennis team (16-10, 6-5 SEC) finished 19th in the final ITA team poll of the 2010-11 season, which marks the ninth time that the Tigers have finished in the Top-25 under head coach Eric Shore.

“I think it’s a reflection on our season,” Shore said. “We had a solid year. We would have liked to make the sweet 16, but we got a very tough draw. Overall, I thought the guys had a great year.”

The Tigers defeated 12 ranked teams this year, including a 7-0 upset over No. 19 North Carolina on February 12, and a 4-3 upset over No. 17 Texas Tech in the second round of the Blue Gray National Classic.

This year’s Tigers also topped No. 32 Ole Miss, which was the first time the Tigers has beaten the Rebels since 1993. Auburn finished the season in second place in the SEC West, earning the sixth seed in the SEC Tournament, where they defeated South Carolina, 4-0, before falling in the second round to No. 11 Kentucky, 4-3.

Auburn was then selected to its 12th straight NCAA Tournament appearance, earning an at-large bid in the Georgia Regional. The Tigers squared off against No. 39 UNC-Wilmington in the first round, claiming a 4-1 victory. The Tigers then faced No. 6 Georgia in second round, falling 4-0.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Tigers add running back

Freshman running back Mike Blakely, who originally signed with Florida in February, has been granted his release and will transfer to Auburn, according to AuburnSports.com and AuburnUndercover.com.
Blakely, a four-star recruit, rushed for 1,323 yards and 16 touchdowns as a senior at Manatee High School in Bradenton, Fla.
The 5-9, 198-pound Blakely will be required to sit out the 2011 season and will have four years of eligibility beginning in 2012.

Ross, Armstrong leave basketball team

AUBURN – Guard Earnest Ross, Auburn’s leading scorer and rebounder last season, and reserve forward Ty Armstrong have decided to leave the Tigers’ program.
“I have mutually agreed with Ty Armstrong and Earnest Ross for them to go in a different direction both academically and athletically,” Auburn coach Tony Barbee said in a prepared statement released by the university. “We wish them the best in their future.”
Ross averaged 13.1 points and 6.6 rebounds last season for the Tigers.
Armstrong, limited coming off knee surgery last season as a sophomore, averaged 1.7 points and 1.4 rebounds per game.
The loss of Ross and Armstrong brings the Tigers’ roster to the NCAA maximum of 13 scholarship players.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Auburn makes the grade

All of Auburn’s sports programs bettered the acceptable score of 925 in the NCAA’s Academic Progress Rates, which were released Tuesday.
The APR measures athletes’ progress toward earning a degree. Programs that score below 925 are subject to penalty.
Women’s basketball, with a perfect score of 1,000, led the way. Football scored a 95, which marks a 15-point improvement over last year, although it still leaves Auburn ranked ninth in the 12-team SEC.
Below are Auburn’s scores by sport:
Men’s sports
Football 940
Basketball 934
Baseball 940
Cross Country 933
Golf 958
Swimming 927
Tennis 965
Indoor track 948
Outdoor track 948
Women’s sports
Softball 976
Basketball 1,000
Golf 983
Gymnastics 979
Soccer 987
Swimming 963
Tennis 986
Indoor track 943
Outdoor track 941
Volleyball 952

Monday, May 23, 2011

Auburn great Pyburn dies

Couetesy of Auburn sports information

AUBURN - Jim Pyburn, 78, a former football All-American end and baseball player at Auburn and outfielder with the Baltimore Orioles, passed away on Saturday evening in Jasper following a long illness.

He earned All-America honors as a junior with 28 receptions for 460 yards and two touchdowns in 1954. The 13th-ranked Tigers went 8-3, winning seven straight games to end the season that included a 28-0 win over Alabama and a 33-13 victory over Baylor in the Gator Bowl. He caught 23 passes for 379 yards and two touchdowns as a sophomore in 1953.

“Jim Pyburn was one of the greatest two-sport athletes in Auburn history and his passing is a sad day for the Auburn family,” Auburn Athletic Director Jay Jacobs said. “Our thoughts and prayers are with the Pyburn family during their time of grief.”

A two-time All-SEC selection in football in the 1953 and 1954 seasons, Pyburn once held the Auburn record for yards by a receiver in a season when the late Coach Ralph Jordan said, “We have a passing attack … just throw the ball in Pyburn’s direction.”

Pyburn led the Southeastern Conference with his .432 batting average in 1954 as he was an All-SEC selection. After receiving All-America honors for football his junior year, he passed up his senior season to play professional baseball.

The Fairfield native played three seasons for the Baltimore Orioles from 1955-57 and was inducted into the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame in 2000.

Pyburn was a former longtime Georgia football defensive assistant coach under Vince Dooley at Georgia from 1964, Dooley’s first year, through 1979. His son, Jeff, was a Georgia quarterback from 1976-79.

The funeral will be held Wednesday, May 25, at Elmwood Cemetery and Chapel, 600 Martin Luther King, Jr., Dr., Birmingham, Ala. Visitation begins at 2:00 p.m. CT with the service to follow at 3:00 p.m.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Auburn has tough road in SEC Tournament

Auburn earned the eighth seed in the eight-team SEC baseball tournament and will open play at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday at Regions Park in Hoover against No. 1-seed South Carolina.

The Tigers (29-27, 14-16 SEC) need to win at least one game in the double-elimination tournament to finish with a better than .500 record, a requirement for participation in the NCAA Tournament.

South Carolina swept the three-game series with Auburn when the two teams played earlier this season in Columbia, S.C.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Auburn to play Seton Hall

Courtesy of Auburn Sports Information

AUBURN - Auburn's men's basketball team will play at Seton Hall in the 2011 Big
East-SEC Challenge on Friday, Dec. 2, in the Prudential Center in
Newark, N.J., ESPN announced on Thursday.

The 12-game SEC-Big East
Challenge features 12 games with four per day from Dec. 1-3.

*This is a wonderful opportunity for additional national exposure for
our program,* said Auburn coach Tony Barbee. *Seton Hall will
be a much improved team, and it will be a challenge playing a Big East
opponent on its home court.

*It will be a chance for our large Auburn alumni base in the
tri-state area of New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania to come watch
the Tigers play close to home.*

This marks the first game in history between Auburn and Seton Hall.

Seton Hall finished 13-18 overall and 7-11 in the Big East Conference
last season, and the Pirates defeated Alabama as well as four NCAA
Tournament teams in Marquette, St. John*s, St. Peter*s and at
Syracuse. Seton Hall went 8-7 at home last season, including a 4-5 mark
in Big East play.

Jordan Theodore, a 6-foot rising senior guard, is Seton Hall*s
leading returning scorer averaging 11.0 points per game and 34.6
shooting from 3-point range a year ago. The Pirates lose their top two
leading scorers in Jeremy Hazell and Jeff Robinson, who averaged 19.8
and 12.1 points, respectively.

Games set for Thursday, Dec. 1 in the SEC-Big East Challenge include
Georgetown at Alabama, Providence at South Carolina, St. John*s at
Kentucky and Ole Miss at DePaul.

The other three games in addition to Auburn at Seton Hall for Dec. 2
are Florida at Syracuse, Cincinnati at Georgia and Vanderbilt at

The matchups for Dec. 3 are Arkansas at UConn, West Virginia at
Mississippi State, LSU at Rutgers and Pittsburgh at Tennessee. For the
2012 SEC-Big East Challenge, this year*s SEC road teams will play at
home against a different opponent.

This marks the third time and second consecutive year that Auburn has
played in the SEC-Big East Challenge. The Tigers lost to Rutgers in
Pittsburgh, Pa., last season and lost to West Virginia in 2007 in the
BJCC Arena in Birmingham.

ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU will combine to televise all 12 games. Times and
networks for the games will be announced by August 15.

Although Auburn*s 2011-12 basketball schedule is a few months away
from being announced, the Tigers will also play in the 2011 Hawaiian
Airlines Diamond Head Classic along with Clemson, Kansas State, Xavier,
UTEP, Long Beach State, Southern Illinois and host Hawaii on Dec. 22, 23
and 25, ESPN Regional Television, Inc., announced on Feb. 24. The games
will be played at the Stan Sheriff Center on the campus of the
University of Hawaii.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

McCalebb arrested on misdemeanor charges

From staff, wire reports

Auburn running back Onterio McCalebb was arrested Saturday in Dekalb County, Ga., and charged with misdemeanor counts of driving an unregistered vehicle and failure to provide a valid driver’s license.

McCalebb was booked into the Dekalb County Detention Center at 6:08 p.m. Saturday and released the following day on $660 bond.

McCalebb rushed for 810 yards and nine touchdowns last season as a sophomore.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Clemson game time set

The Auburn football game at Clemson on Sept. 17 will kickoff at 11 a.m., the Atlantic Coast Conference announced Wednesday.

The game will be televised nationally by ABC.

It will mark Auburn’s first game at Clemson Memorial Stadium since 1970.

Auburn defeated Clemson, 27-24, in overtime this past season at Jordan-Hare Stadium.

Auburn holds a 34-11-2 all-time series lead over Clemson. The two programs will also meet in the 2012 Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Auburn athletes graduate

Courtesy of Auburn sports information

AUBURN — A total of 52 Auburn student-athletes graduated as part of the Auburn University’s Spring 2011 graduating class on Monday in Jordan-Hare Stadium.

The graduates represent 17 of Auburn’s sport programs, including seven men’s swimming and diving athletes, six from baseball, five each from football and women’s track and field, four from equestrian and men’s track and field, three from women’s tennis and volleyball, two each from softball, women’s swimming and diving, men’s tennis, women’s golf, gymnastics and one each from soccer, men’s basketball and women’s basketball.

The seven men’s swimming and diving graduates include Gideon Louw (South Africa), Kyle Maese (Portland, Ore.), Kelly Marx (Overland Park, Kan.), Tyler McGill (Champaign, Ill.), Andrew Mitchell (Nashville, Tenn.), Michael Silva (Tampa, Fla.) and Pascal Wollach (Calgary, Alberta, Canada).

The six from baseball are Justin Hargett (Hartselle, Ala.), Michael Hurst (Vestavia Hills, Ala.), Jon Luke Jacobs (Gainestown, Ala.), Christopher O’Neil (Birmingham, Ala.), Kevin Patterson (Birmingham, Ala.) and Sean Ray (Virginia Beach, Va.).

The five graduates from football are Kodi Burns (Fort Smith, Ark.), Neil Caudle (Hoover, Ala.), Wade Christopher (Vestavia Hills, Ala.), Adam Herring (Springdale, Ark.) and Derek Winter (Tampa, Fla.).

The five from women’s track and field are Erika Akins (Madison, Ala.), Miriam Arusei (Eldoret, Kenya), Brittany Mattrella (Hoover, Ala.), Allison Smith (Mobile, Ala.) and Laurel Pritchard Novack (Vestavia Hills, Ala.).

The four from men’s track and field are Michael Dehaven (Tyrone, Ga.), Stephen Fly (Memphis, Tenn.), Nicholas Green (Atlanta, Ga.) and Joseph Peake (Macon, Ga.).

The four from equestrian are Amy Bohan (Niceville, Fla.), Dorothy Grubb (West Palm Beach, Fla.), Alexandra Loprete (Coltsneck, N.J.), and Anna Schierholz (St. Louis, Mo.)

The three from volleyball are Elizabeth Crouch (New Orleans, La.), Alyssa Davis (Oakland Park, Fla.) and Jonelle Wallace (Denver, Colo.) while the three from women’s tennis are Dunja Djuranovic (Bukovac, Serbia), Jil Hastenrath (Solingen, Germany) and Myrthe Molenveld (Haasbergen, Netherlands).

The two graduates from softball are Katie Colton (Yucaipa, Calif.) and Holly Ragsdale (Dadeville, Ala.), two from women’s swimming and diving are Ava Ohlgren (Northville, Mich.) and Melanie Roberts (Rochester, N.Y.), two from men’s tennis are Nicholas Maurillo (Ft. Myers, Fla.) and Tim Puetz (Usingen, Germany), two from women’s golf are Cydney Clanton (Concord, N.H.) and Madison Overbey (High Point, N.C.) and the two from gymnastics are Carmen Nelms (Stone Mountain, Ga.) and Kristina Voss (Paradise Valley, Ariz.).

There was one graduate each with Caitlin King (St. Louis, Mo.) of women’s soccer, Douglas Merrell (Birmingham, Ala.) of men’s basketball and Reneisha Hobbs (Huntsville, Ala.) of women’s basketball.

The two graduates from Operation Follow-thru were Harold Morrow and David Rocker of football.

There were four NCAA Champions, one Olympian, 13 All-Americans, six SEC Champions, 10 All-SEC members, one Academic All-American, 24 SEC Academic Honor Roll members, one SEC Scholar Athlete of the Year, one Academic All-District and one Freshman All-SEC selection.

The 52 graduates collectively hail from 18 states and seven countries.