Detroit Free Press from Detroit, Michigan on November 3, 2011 · Page C5
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Detroit Free Press from Detroit, Michigan · Page C5

Detroit, Michigan
Issue Date:
Thursday, November 3, 2011
Page C5
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THURSDAY, NOV.3,2011 WWW.FREEP.COM 5C x x FOOTBALL SPORTS NEW YORK — The NFL has told its game officials to watch closely for concussion symptoms in players. Ten days after San Diego guard Kris Dielman sustained a head injury against the Jets and later suffered a seizure on the team’s flight home from New York, the league’s injury and safety panel issued the directive Wednesday. “Our game officials will receive concussion awareness training and will remain alert to possible concussions during games,” league spokesman Greg Aiello said. “If an official believes a player may have suffered a concussion, he should take appropriate steps to alert the team and get medical attention for the player.” Dielman was concussed with approximately 12 minutes remaining in the Oct. 23 game, after which he struggled to maintain balance. ARIZONA: Quarterback Kevin Kolb sat out practice with a turf toe injury. Kolb said he would be able to play against St. Louis on Sunday with limited practice. If he can’t go, the team would turn to second-year pro John Skelton , who started four games last season. RB Beanie Wells did not practice because of a sore right knee. ATLANTA: Falcons left tackle Sam Baker will miss three to four weeks with a back injury, coach Mike Smith said. Will Svitek , who started for Baker at Detroit, is expected to take his place Sunday against Indianapolis. NEW YORK: The Giants started preparations for Sunday’s game against the Patriots without five starters. Leading running back Ahmad Bradshaw (foot), starting wide receivers Hakeem Nicks (hamstring) and Mario Manningham (illness), center David Baas (knee) and defensive end Osi Umenyiora (shoulder) all missed practice. OAKLAND: The Raiders got their first look at T.J. Houshmandzadeh in practice and it looked like old times with him catching passes from Carson Palmer . Houshmandzadeh, who signed Tuesday, played six seasons in Cincinnati with Palmer. ST. LOUIS: Quarterback Sam Bradford is hopeful of playing this weekend despite being limited to watching Wednesday’s practice. Bradford is out of a walking boot and wearing a less cumbersome brace to protect a high left ankle sprain that’s sidelined him for two games. He took some snaps during the walk-through indoors Wednesday. NFL roundup Officials to watch for concussions FREE PRESS NEWS SERVICES BASKETBALL: Oakland’s Reggie Hamilton and Detroit Mercy’s Ray McCallum were named to the Lou Henson Preseason All-America Team, announced by …  A preseason poll picked Western Michigan’s men’s team to finish first and Central Michigan third in the Mid- American Conference West. WMU’s Flenard Whitfield and Demetrius Ward and CMU’s Trey Zeigler were selected to the preseason All-MAC team in the West Division. … CMU’s women’s team was picked to finish second, Eastern Michigan third and Western Michigan sixth in the MAC West in a preseason poll. Toledo is predicted to win the division. EMU’s Tavelyn James , CMU’s Brandi Baker and Niki DiGuilio and WMU’s Miame Giden were selected to the preseason All-MAC team for the West Division. … Michigan Tech, Grand Valley State and Lake Superior State were the top three teams in a Great Lakes Intercollegiate Conference women’s North Division preseason poll. … Michigan Tech, GVSU and Ferris State received the top three spots in the GLIAC North Division men’s preseason poll. … In the GLIAC South Division, Wayne State was selected third behind Findlay and Hillsdale. FIELD HOCKEY: Central Michigan’s Cayleigh Immelman was named MAC freshman of the year. Midfielder Simone Lazar joined Immelman on the MAC’s first team. HOCKEY: The Plymouth Whalers acquired 17-year-old center Cody Payne from the Oshawa Generals in exchange for a third-round selection in the 2012 Ontario Hockey Priority Selection. SOCCER: Michigan State’s women’s team advanced to the Big Ten tournament semifinals. The final score was 0-0, but the Spartans won the shootout, 4-3. MSU (14-5-1) will face the Illinois-Ohio State winner. … SWIMMING: Wayne State sophomore Carol Azambuja was selected as both the GLIAC women’s athlete of the week and the Counsilman-Hunsaker Division II swimmer of the week. … GVSU freshman Milan Medo was named the GLIAC men’s athlete of the week. FREE PRESS STAFF REPORTS Metro +state Up next: Minnesota What: No. 15 Michigan State (6-2, 3-1Big Ten) vs. Minnesota (2-6, 1-3). When/Where: Noon Saturday, Spartan Stadium, East Lansing. TV: Big Ten Network. Line: Spartans by 28. Up next: Iowa What: No. 13 U-M (7-1, 3-1Big Ten) at Iowa (5-3, 2-2). When/Where: Noon Saturday, Kinnick Stadium, Iowa City, Iowa. TV: ESPN. Line: Wolverines by 4. Even film cannot do Jeremy Gallon justice. The Michigan sophomore receiver is listed at 5-feet-8, so the last pass one expects he could handle would be a jump ball. Yet there he is, reaching above the cor- nerbacks to snag one of those passes. “We had off- season training and we took our time to throw the ball to receivers in one-on-one and seven-on- seven, and we saw him do it all summer,” quarterback Denard Robinson said. “This dude is no joke. We knew he was athletic and he could do things with the ball, but when he went up and got a couple balls in the summer, we were like, all right.” To see Gallon in person gives a hint about why he’s so effective. At 185 pounds, he has a powerful build, impressive enough that he began dunking a basketball last year. “I’m no LeBron James, but I can dunk a basketball,” he said. The jump balls — which he has shown he can handle on occasion this year — are as much about his will as his skill. The most memorable one might be the jump ball early in the fourth quarter against Notre Dame, when he took his defensive back deep in the end zone and stepped forward to leap and catch Robinson’s touchdown pass. Gallon is the Wolverines’ leading receiver with 23 catches because he can catch every type of pass, from the short dump-offs to the jump balls to the 42-yarder he caught Saturday against Purdue, when he had to adjust to Robinson’s un- derthrown pass. “It’s a mental thing, I am going to come down with the ball,” Gallon said. “We’re competitive with everything we do.” That includes blocking, an area where this receiver group is gaining an impressive reputation. Coach Brady Hoke cited that as one of the keys to the improved rushing game against Purdue. Gallon is one of the best blockers. “Everyone thinks receivers just run routes and catch balls,” Gallon said. “They don’t pay attention to what we do when we don’t have the ball in our hands, but all of the receivers take pride in blocking.” It’s all impressive considering Gallon hadn’t played receiver before coming to U-M three years ago. He was a quarterback and running back at Apopka (Fla.) High School. Robinson said Gallon jokes often that he’s gunning for the starting QB job — he has shown off his arm in the summer — but he has earned his spot at receiver after catching only four passes last year. “He’s not very tall, but he plays a lot bigger,” offensive coordinator Al Borges said. “He’s probably always an underdog,” Robinson said. “Everybody looks at him and says, ‘Oh, he’s a short guy,’ but he gets physical and he can get in your face.” Opponents are finding that out. CONTACT MARK SNYDER: MSNYD- ER@FREEPRESS.COM. FOLLOW HIM ON TWITTER @FREEPWOLVERINES. Michigan notebook Gallon rises above his short stature By MARK SNYDER FREE PRESS SPORTS WRITER Jeremy Gallon EAST LANSING — Minnesota junior MarQueisGray is different from the other dual- threat quarterbacks Michigan State has prepared for in recent weeks. Gray is 6-feet-4 and 240 pounds. “He’s different in that he’s a giant,” MSU linebackers coach Mike Tressel said Wednesday. Gray has rushed for 500 yards on 105 carries and scored three touchdowns. He also has completed 67 of 132 passes for 940 yards, four touchdowns and four interceptions. The Spartans have faced a string of dual-threat QBs in consecutive games: Braxton Miller of Ohio State, Denard Robinson of Michigan, Russell Wilson of Wisconsin and Taylor Martinez of Nebraska. “MarQueis Gray is fast, but certainly he’s big,” Tressel said. “You’re not going to just throw him to the ground. You need to wrap up … the size is the biggest difference.” To prepare for Gray, the Spartans are using a couple of players in practice this week. MSU’s regular scout-team quarterback, true freshman Connor Cook (6-4, 200), definitely has the size. “He’s a big, tall kid,” Tressel said of Cook. “We’ll also use the guys that we use as quick, fast, jitterbug guys, just to get our defense prepared.” Freshman wide receiver Spencer Elliott (6-0, 181) is one of those guys. INJURY UPDATE: Tressel said he expects to have linebackers Chris Norman and Steve Gardiner back for Saturday’s game. A sprained shoulder kept Norman out of last week’s 24-3 loss at Nebraska. “I’m pretty confident he’ll be good to go this week,” Tressel said of Norman. “Wasn’t real comfortable. Could have gone if we really wanted (him) to play through the pain and risk it, but (he’s) got a lot of football to be played, so didn’t.” Gardiner suffered a shoulder stinger in the first half against Nebraska and did not return to the game. He practiced Tuesday. FRESH LBS: Tressel said true freshman linebacker Taiwan Jones overcame a hurdle in recent weeks. “Sort of plateaued,” Tressel said of Jones. “Thought, ‘OK, I’m a backup.’ Which is great as afreshman. Sort of settled into that mind-set a little bit and got out of that funk the last couple weeks, which is really good, especially with Chris out this past week.” Jones, who has played mostly on special teams, has 10 tackles and a half-sack. Freshman linebackers Lawrence Thomas , Ed Davis and Darien Harris are on track for redshirt seasons. “If you look at our front seven on the scout team right now, the redshirt guys, that’s a pretty good group of players that are working hard,” Tressel said. “You’ve got Darien, L.T. and Ed Davis at the backer spots.” Tressel also mentioned defensive linemen Brandon Clemons , Damon Knox and Shilique Calhoun . “There are some boys that are going to be able to play some great football up here,” Tressel said. “The disappointment (of not playing) has passed. You accept the situation that you’re in and try to figure out how to help your team win.” NOTEBOOK: The Big Ten’s mobile tour, “Honoring Legends. Building Leaders,” will visit East Lansing today through Saturday. Fans can play interactive games and have their picture taken with the Stagg-Paterno Championship Trophy, which goes to the winner of the Big Ten championship game. The tour starts at the MSU Union from 11a.m. to 1:30 p.m. today. On Saturday, it will be on the north side of Spartan Stadium from 8:30 to noon and from 3-4 p.m. … Offensive lineman Arthur Ray Jr. has been nominated for a Football Writers Association of America courage award. He has played in two games this season after a four- year battle with bone cancer. Michigan State notebook MARLIN LEVISON/McClatchy-Tribune Gophers quarterback MarQueis Gray tries to elude the Iowa defense. He has rushed for 500 yards this season. ABIG THREAT Minnesota QB Gray has speed and size By GEORGE SIPPLE FREE PRESS SPORTS WRITER Today 8p.m. cBSS˜ Tulsa at UCF. 8:00 eSP˜ Florida St. at Boston College. Friday 8p.m. eSPN¤ Central Michigan at Kent St. 9:00 eSP˜ Southern Cal at Colorado. 10:30 fSPLUÍ Preps: Servite (Calif.) vs. Mater Dei (Calif.). Saturday Noon [&] Ball State at Eastern Michigan. Noon bT˜ Spartans: Minnesota at Michigan State. Noon bTNØ *Indiana at Ohio State. Noon eSP˜ Wolverines: Michigan at Iowa. Noon eSPN¨ Syracuse at Connecticut. Noon fSPLUÍ Vanderbilt at Florida. Noon f˛ Texas Tech at Texas. 3:30 [&] Purdue at Wisconsin. 3:30 6¤ Army at Air Force. 3:30 bT˜ Northwestern at Nebraska. 3:30 cBSS˜ Troy at Navy. 3:30 eSPN¤ Texas A&M at Oklahoma. 3:30 eSPN¨ Mississippi at Kentucky. 3:30 fSÎfSPLUÍ UTEP at Rice. 4:00 nFÒ CFL: Winnipeg at Calgary. 7:00 cBSS˜ Houston at UAB. 7:00 eSPN¨ Cincinnati at Pittsburgh. 7:00 fSPLUÍ Missouri at Baylor. 7:15 eSP˜ South Carolina at Arkansas. 7:30 vÍ Arizona St. at UCLA. 8:00 [&] Notre Dame at Wake Forest. 8:00 6¤ LSU at Alabama. 8:00 eSPN¤ Kansas St. at Oklahoma St. 10:30 cBSS˜ Boise St. at UNLV. 10:30 eSPN¨ Louisiana Tech at Fresno State. 10:30 fSÎ Oregon at Washington. 10:30 fSPLUÍ Middle Tennessee State at Tennessee (delayed). *Check local listings or contact your cable provider for channel number. Sunday 1p.m. [@] NFL: San Francisco at Washington. 1:00 6¤ NFL: N.Y. Jets at Buffalo. 4:15 [@] NFL: Green Bay at San Diego. 8:20 [$] NFL: Baltimore at Pittsburgh. Monday 8:30 p.m. eSP˜ NFL: Chicago at Philadelphia. Football on TV

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