<![CDATA[Colorado Springs Gazette RSS - sports >> air-force-academy]]> http://gazette.com/rss/sports/air-force-academy Mon, 03 Aug 2015 19:32:16 -0600 Zend_Feed http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/tech/rss <![CDATA[Star QB Kale Pearson returns to help Air Force in a new role]]> http://gazette.com/star-qb-kale-pearson-returns-to-help-air-force-in-a-new-role/article/1556674?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/star-qb-kale-pearson-returns-to-help-air-force-in-a-new-role/article/1556674?custom_click=rss

Kale Pearson's recent history as Air Force's quarterback would seemingly make him the ideal graduate assistant to help the offensive coaching staff.

But the Falcons' confidence in him in his new role dates from a time a bit earlier in his personal history.

"He's been around it ever since his mom was changing his diaper," coach Troy Calhoun said. "I think he can be a real big bonus for us."

- More on the Falcons: Calhoun says it would be fun to explore life outside MW

Pearson, whose father, Preston, is a high school football coach in Oklahoma, graduated in May and his first assignment is to serve as an assistant coach with the football team he guided to 10 wins this past season. In the spring of 2016 he will



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Mon, 03 Aug 2015 09:10:16 -0600
<![CDATA[Air Force running back Devin Rushing returns to practice with a solid excuse]]> http://gazette.com/air-force-running-back-devin-rushing-returns-to-practice-with-a-solid-excuse/article/1556639?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/air-force-running-back-devin-rushing-returns-to-practice-with-a-solid-excuse/article/1556639?custom_click=rss Rushing returns to practice with a solid excuse

Tailback Devin Rushing made his fall practice debut Saturday armed with a solid reason as to why he missed the first session Friday.

"I was just working," said Rushing, a senior who ran for 356 yards and three touchdowns last year. "Some of the cadet stuff takes precedence over football."

Summers for cadets are split into three three-week sessions. During one they go home on leave, during another they take classes and during a third they work at an Air Force job.

Rushing's job is in the command center, where he essentially serves as a telephone operator - relaying calls wherever needed. His responsibilities there don't end until Sunday, where he'll work again and

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]]> Sat, 01 Aug 2015 21:40:02 -0600 <![CDATA[Air Force nose guard David Harris reports for practice with added bulk]]> http://gazette.com/air-force-nose-guard-david-harris-reports-for-practice-with-added-bulk/article/1556638?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/air-force-nose-guard-david-harris-reports-for-practice-with-added-bulk/article/1556638?custom_click=rss

David Harris was named for the undersized warrior in the famous biblical battle against Goliath.

And for so long, it fit so appropriately as Harris was small for his position playing for an Air Force team with a reputation for combating larger foes.

Tipping the scales at 285 pounds, Harris has outgrown the connection with his namesake. And the Falcons as a whole are following the same path.

"I think now we're just bringing the mass, and I know I've gotten infinitely stronger," said Harris, a nose guard who added about 35 pounds from the same point last year. "I don't know how I've been able to add this much strength to my repertoire. But I'm just going to be more powerful, there will be more bull rushes, more strength



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Sat, 01 Aug 2015 21:00:02 -0600
<![CDATA[Air Force's experience shows on offense as fall practice begins]]> http://gazette.com/air-forces-experience-shows-on-offense-as-fall-practice-begins/article/1556612?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/air-forces-experience-shows-on-offense-as-fall-practice-begins/article/1556612?custom_click=rss

Air Force hit the ground running on Friday, particularly on offense.

The first day of practice brought back together a collection of skill players who carried the load for the Falcons last year, and they already looked ready to do it again.

"Oh man, the offense looked crazy today," running back Jacobi Owens said. "The offense was ridiculous today and it was the first day of practice. The first team defense couldn't handle us on those first couple plays today."

To be fair, the team practiced in no pads except helmets, so the defense wasn't exactly competing on equal footing. But still, spring ball wrapped nearly five months ago, so it had been a while since the team had stepped on the field together and that offense in



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Fri, 31 Jul 2015 22:08:48 -0600
<![CDATA[10 ways Air Force has changed from its 10-loss days of 2013]]> http://gazette.com/10-ways-air-force-has-changed-from-its-10-loss-days-of-2013/article/1556551?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/10-ways-air-force-has-changed-from-its-10-loss-days-of-2013/article/1556551?custom_click=rss In 2013, the Air Force Falcons lost 10 games. A year later, they won 10.

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Fri, 31 Jul 2015 09:23:56 -0600
<![CDATA[Ramsey: Three reasons to believe in Air Force's football team]]> http://gazette.com/ramsey-three-reasons-to-believe-in-air-forces-football-team/article/1556553?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/ramsey-three-reasons-to-believe-in-air-forces-football-team/article/1556553?custom_click=rss

Steve Russ runs the defense for Air Force football. He understands the required mindset for a successful academy team.

"They love being the underdog," he said near the end of the 2014 season. "They love being told that they're not very good. They love to hear that the time to win here is past. They love hearing they aren't good enough."

The 2014 Falcons walked into their season armed with an immense blessing:

They constantly heard the voice of doubters. Virtually everyone believed the Falcons would once again be lousy.

The luxury of being surrounded by doubters is gone as the Falcons begin preparation Friday for the 2015 season.

The Falcons should be good.

The Falcons could even become powerful.



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Fri, 31 Jul 2015 07:25:27 -0600
<![CDATA[Massive turnover at quarterback leaves Mountain West wide open]]> http://gazette.com/massive-turnover-at-quarterback-leaves-mountain-west-wide-open/article/1556500?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/massive-turnover-at-quarterback-leaves-mountain-west-wide-open/article/1556500?custom_click=rss

LAS VEGAS - Nevada football coach Brian Polian couldn't sleep one night this summer, so he drove to his office around 3 a.m. to begin a project he had been putting off to that point.

For the next three days, he locked himself in the room and broke down film of every repetition his top three quarterbacks took in spring practice. He analyzed every detail, took notes and sent a long list of thoughts to his offensive assistants.

This was time he wasn't spending scheming for opponents, recruiting or doing anything else to advance his program beyond that one position. But it was something he felt he had to do as his team looks to replace a four-year starter in Cody Fajardo.

And he knows he's not alone in the Mountain West.



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Wed, 29 Jul 2015 22:29:10 -0600
<![CDATA[MWC Notes: Bad blood still exists between Air Force and Wyoming football]]> http://gazette.com/mwc-notes-bad-blood-still-exists-between-air-force-and-wyoming-football/article/1556496?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/mwc-notes-bad-blood-still-exists-between-air-force-and-wyoming-football/article/1556496?custom_click=rss

Bad blood exists between Air Force and Wyoming

Off the football field, Eddie Yarbrough is a ukulele-playing gentle giant.

That is, until the Wyoming defensive end starts talking about Air Force.

"Off the field, I have a lot of respect. On the field, I don't got no time for them," the all-Mountain West player said. "I don't like them one bit."

Yarbrough is one of the few players remaining on Wyoming who was a contributor when then-Cowboys coach Dave Christensen launched into a postgame, profanity-laced tirade at Air Force's Troy Calhoun in 2012. But he said players who didn't witness that have heard all about it.

"YouTube didn't go nowhere in the last five years," he said. "People still know the whole thing.



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Wed, 29 Jul 2015 22:26:10 -0600
<![CDATA[Air Force picked fourth in Mountain West preseason football division poll]]> http://gazette.com/air-force-picked-fourth-in-mountain-west-preseason-football-division-poll/article/1556436?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/air-force-picked-fourth-in-mountain-west-preseason-football-division-poll/article/1556436?custom_click=rss Air Force picked fourth in preseason football poll

A repeat performance is expected out of Air Force this season. The Falcons were picked fourth in their division in the Mountain West preseason poll.

The Falcons were picked behind Boise State (177 points), Utah State (150) and Colorado State (108) in the Mountain Division in the preseason poll revealed Tuesday.

Air Force (90) was followed by Wyoming (64) and New Mexico (41).

In the West Division, San Diego State (177) was established as the runaway favorite over Fresno State (141), Nevada (113), San Jose State (91), Hawaii (70) and UNLV (38).

Naturally, this news was not met with great excitement by the coaches in attendance at Mountain West Media Days at



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Tue, 28 Jul 2015 20:49:53 -0600
<![CDATA[Mountain West facing new challenges in College Football Playoff era]]> http://gazette.com/mountain-west-facing-new-challenges-in-college-football-playoff-era/article/1556435?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/mountain-west-facing-new-challenges-in-college-football-playoff-era/article/1556435?custom_click=rss

LAS VEGAS - The money was significantly better, but one year into the era of the College Football Playoff the Mountain West didn't seem to care for the change.

If the first year showed the conference coaches anything, it was that it will take a perfect scenario for one of its teams to earn a spot in the four-team bracket.

And so, even as commissioner Craig Thompson recapped the year's successes in football - four 10-win teams, a record seven bowl appearances, a Fiesta Bowl victory and total distributed revenue of $47 million, a 62 percent leap from the previous high of $29 million - there was a sense of disappointment at seeing the long-awaited playoff format fall short of expectations because it includes just four spots.



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Tue, 28 Jul 2015 20:39:37 -0600
<![CDATA[Air Force runner, Rhodes Scholar Rebecca Esselstein earns top Mountain West honor]]> http://gazette.com/air-force-runner-rhodes-scholar-rebecca-esselstein-earns-top-mountain-west-honor/article/1556428?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/air-force-runner-rhodes-scholar-rebecca-esselstein-earns-top-mountain-west-honor/article/1556428?custom_click=rss

LAS VEGAS - The accolades continue to pile up for Rebecca Esselstein, but none of them meant as much as the embrace of her peers.

Esselstein on Tuesday was announced as the Mountain West's Student-Athlete of the Year for the 2014-15 season by conference commissioner Craig Thompson. This came after Esselstein also received the CoSIDA-Capital One Academic All-American of the Year for Division I Women's Track/Field and Cross Country last month, earned status as a Rhodes Scholar and graduated first in her class for the Air Force Academy.

"When they announced I got top grad, my class stood up for me and clapped," Esselstein said, describing the scene during a briefing of the graduating class in a lecture hall.



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Tue, 28 Jul 2015 19:51:44 -0600
<![CDATA[Ramsey: Air Force's Pilipovich must read teen minds, and that's not easy]]> http://gazette.com/ramsey-air-forces-pilipovich-must-read-teen-minds-and-thats-not-easy/article/1556180?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/ramsey-air-forces-pilipovich-must-read-teen-minds-and-thats-not-easy/article/1556180?custom_click=rss

Kamryn Williams nearly abandoned the Air Force Academy. He's glad he remained.

He arrived at the academy in 2011 as a basketball-first teen. He helped lead Sierra to consecutive state 4A titles, largely because of his laser-like focus on the game.

He was forced to widen his view when he moved from family home to military academy. He had to march. He had to study diligently. He had to defer to upperclassmen.

After enduring the first brutal days of basic training, he wanted to depart. He explained his pain to his father, Sam. Kamryn was seeking permission to escape the relentless misery.

Look ahead, Sam said. Remember your commitment. Stick it out.

Williams obeyed his father.



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Fri, 24 Jul 2015 06:30:24 -0600
<![CDATA[Ramsey: Mike Gould welcomes renewal of Air Force-CU football series]]> http://gazette.com/ramsey-mike-gould-welcomes-renewal-of-air-force-cu-football-series/article/1555970?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/ramsey-mike-gould-welcomes-renewal-of-air-force-cu-football-series/article/1555970?custom_click=rss

For those who believe time has somehow stood still, Air Force's football trip to Boulder in 2020 will deliver disappointment.

The Falcons will play the Buffs, and the game will be...like other games. CU students will conduct themselves...like students at Michigan, Oklahoma and Colorado State.

In the lively imaginations of some Air Force fans, Boulder is a hostile destination inhabited by young women and men who want to ruin America. This view is hugely inaccurate. Doubt me? The 2020 game will prove I'm correct.

Yes, the Falcons' last football trip to Boulder resulted in an ugly scar in our state's history, and I'm not just talking sports history. In 1973, there were frozen beer cans tossed, uniforms ripped and hats

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]]> Tue, 21 Jul 2015 04:05:20 -0600 <![CDATA[List: 3 Air Force-Colorado football connections]]> http://gazette.com/list-3-air-force-colorado-football-connections/article/1555754?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/list-3-air-force-colorado-football-connections/article/1555754?custom_click=rss Air Force and Colorado haven't played football in more than four decades, a series that will be revived in 2020. Though they haven't faced off on the field during that time, they still share a few connections. Here are a few of them:

Ron Vanderlinden

The linebackers coach played a key role in helping Bill McCartney build Colorado into a national power, serving as an assistant from 1983 through 1991. He then left for Northwestern, put in time as the head coach at Maryland, then spent a decade at Penn State.



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Fri, 17 Jul 2015 08:04:38 -0600
<![CDATA[Q&A with Air Force athletic director Jim Knowlton]]> http://gazette.com/qa-with-air-force-athletic-director-jim-knowlton/article/1555676?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/qa-with-air-force-athletic-director-jim-knowlton/article/1555676?custom_click=rss

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Thu, 16 Jul 2015 04:11:08 -0600