Sports: SMU kicks off 2010 Morgan Campaign

Jillian Samuels

Sports: SMU kicks off 2010 Morgan Campaign

Former SMU Football Coach Herman 'Sleepy' Morgan with team membersThe SMU Mustang Club kicked off the 2010 Morgan Campaign Fund Drive with a reception at the DoubleTree Campbell Centre Feb. 23. More than 80 volunteers, led by Campaign Co-Chairs Bob Edmonson, Jeri Jessee and George Shelburne, will work on the fund-raising drive, which will run this year from Feb. 23 to May 1.

Founded in 1935, the Mustang Club is the official fund-raising organization of SMU Athletics. Annual donations help expand team travel and recruiting budgets, enhance student-athlete academic services and make facility improvements, among other priorities. The Morgan Campaign is named for Herman “Sleepy” Morgan, (center left), a former SMU football coach who came to the Hilltop in 1950 and was freshman coach for 25 of the next 26 years. Read more.

SMU senior guard Jillian SamuelsSenior guard Jillian Samuels (right) became SMU’s all-time leader in 3-pointers Feb. 25, 2010, sinking her 238th shot from behind the arc to lead the Mustangs to a 69-61 win over UCF in Moody Coliseum. She shot for 17 points total, going 5-for-11 from the field and 4-for-5 from the free-throw line. Junior guard/forward Haley Day posted her second double-double of the season, scoring 13 points with 11 rebounds, and senior guard Brittany Gilliam shot for 13 points with four assists. The women’s basketball team hosts Southern Miss at 2 p.m. Feb. 27 and can clinch a first-round bye in the 2010 GMC Sierra Conference USA Championship with a win. Read more.

Sophomore outside hitter Dana Powell and senior middle blocker Kendra Kahanek have been named to the American Volleyball Coaches’ Association All-America Team. As All-America Honorable Mentions, they became the first players in the history of SMU volleyball to earn All-America honors after leading the Mustangs to a 19-12 record in 2009 – including a school-record, 11-match home winning streak. Read more.

February 26, 2010|Sports|

Sports: honors Mustangs, Jones

SMU offensive lineman J.T. BrooksMustang football has made plenty of news since SMU’s 45-10 Christmas Eve win over Nevada in the 2009 Sheraton Hawaii Bowl. The latest comes from, which named Head Coach June Jones its Coach of the Bowl Season and sophomore offensive lineman J.T. Brooks (left) to its All-Bowl Team. The site also ranked first-year quarterback Kyle Padron‘s 460-yard, two-touchdown performance the 8th best among all players in the postseason. The full list of CFN’s honors is available on the website. Read more from SMU Athletics.

In addition, the Mustangs received a vote in the final USA Today Coaches Poll. The team entered the bowl season as the biggest underdog in any bowl game yet finished with the largest margin of victory in all bowl games played. Read more.

SMU wide receiver Emmanuel SandersMeanwhile, senior wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders (right) has accepted an invitation to play in the 85th East-West Shrine Game at 2 p.m. CST Jan. 23 in Orlando, Florida. Sanders, who will play for the West Team, joins a list that includes John Elway, Tom Brady, Brett Favre and 62 NFL Hall of Famers who have played in the contest, which is America’s longest-running college all-star football game. Read more.

The No. 18 SMU women’s swimming and diving team welcomes Rice and Houston Jan. 22-24 in a pair of dual meets at Perkins Natatorium. The weekend will give fans the chance to see the Mustangs compete against two of the top-tier schools in Conference USA this season. Read more.

SMU guard Jillian SamuelsBoth SMU swim teams received national recognition Jan. 21 by the College Swimming Coaches Association of America. The women’s team moved up to No. 18 in the latest poll, while men’s swimming and diving earned a rank of No. 23 – the biggest jump of any school in the poll, as the Mustang men were the only new team to enter the top 25. Read more.

Senior guard Jillian Samuels (left) tied her career-high game record with 20 points and became the 17th player in SMU history to score 1,000 points in a career while leading the women’s basketball team to a 70-59 home win over Tulane Jan. 17. She went 6-for-9 from the field, including 2-for-3 from 3-point range, and made 6 of 7 free-throw attempts during the SMU victory. The team hosts East Carolina at 5 p.m. Jan. 23 in Moody Coliseum. Read more.

January 22, 2010|Sports|

Hot Links: Three Mustang teams earn C-USA titles

SMU Women's Basketball Coach Rhonda Rompola cuts the net

The women’s basketball team defeated UTEP 78-65 to win its first Conference USA championship Feb 28, 2009. Four players scored in the double digits: junior guards Brittany Gilliam and Jillian Samuels (with a game-high 24 points and 19 points, respectively); sophomore guard LaShandra Hill with 11 points; and first-year center Christine Elliott, who posted her 2nd consecutive double-double with 15 points and a team-high 11 rebounds.

Gilliam, with 71 steals for the season, was named the C-USA Defensive Player of the Year, as well as to the All-Conference Second Team and All-Defensive Team. Junior forward Delisha Wills joined Gilliam on the All-Conference Second Team, and Elliott was named to the All-Freshman Team, as well as Rookie of the Week for the week of March 2. Elliott had 21 rebounds against Tulane on Feb. 26, setting a new SMU record for a freshman and tying the school record for rebounds by any player set by Felicia Bluitt in 1986 against TCU. Elliott also tied for the second-highest total in any Conference USA game.

The team begins play in the 2009 C-USA tournament at noon March 6 in New Orleans. The Mustangs enter as the No. 1 seed. (Above, Head Coach Rhonda Rompola cuts the last string of the net after the UTEP game.) Read more.

SMU diver Matthew CulbertsonMeanwhile, the men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams have each won their 13th consecutive conference championships. In the men’s competition, the Mustangs won 15 events and set 9 meet records on their way to the overall victory in the CRWC Natatorium at the University of Houston Feb. 25-28, 2009. Individual titleists included junior Thomas Fadnes (50 free, 100 free); junior Pontus Renholm (100 back, 200 back); junior Edward Downes (200 IM, 400 IM, 200 fly); and sophomore Matthew Culbertson (top left), who swept the one-meter springboard, three-meter springboard and platform diving events.

In addition, 5 relay teams finished first. Renholm, Fadnes and seniors Grega Plevelj and Luka Vrtovec won the 200 medley relay. Downes, first-year swimmers Robin Andreasson and Walter Rumans and junior Maverick Smalley won the 800 free relay. Renholm, Plevelj, Downes and Fadnes titled in the 400 medley relay. Fadnes, Vrtovec, Andreasson and Renholm swam to a new C-USA meet record, season-best, and NCAA “B” provisional-qualifying time of 1:18.35 in the 200 free relay. Finally, Andreasson, Vrtovec, Rumans and Fadnes won the 400 free relay. Read more.

SMU swimmer Petra KlosovaIn the women’s meet – also in Houston’s CRWC Natatorium Feb. 25-28, 2009 – the Mustangs swept the medal stand in two events. Seniors Petra Klosova (right) and Candace Blackman, with sophomore Sascha Van den Branden, finished 1st, 2nd and 3rd in the 100 free. Senior Jennifer Basel and juniors Devon Callaghan and Justine Clark took gold, silver and bronze in the 200 IM. Klosova also finished first in the 100 back with a season-best time of 53.82. Other individual titleists included Callaghan (100 breast), Van den Branden (50 free), first-year swimmer Raminta Dvariskyte (200 breast), first-year swimmer Therese Svendsen (200 back), and sophomore Elzanne Werth (100 fly).

The women’s team also titled in 5 relays. Svendsen, Klosova, Werth and Callaghan won the 200 medley relay. Blackman, Van den Branden, Klosova and freshman Christy-Leigh Lategan won the 800 free relay in 7:07 – 11 seconds ahead of second-place Rice. Svendsen, Callaghan, Werth and Klosova touched in at 3:34.62 in the 400 medley relay, a full 4 seconds faster than the record they set last season. Blackman, Van den Branden, Werth and Klosova titled in the 200 free relay. Finally, Blackman, Van den Branden, Werth and Klosova set another meet record and NCAA provisional qualifying time of 3:17.00 in the 400 free relay. Read more.

SMU golfer Marc SambolThe men’s golf team won the 2009 Northwood Spring Invite March 3 at Thorntree Country Club, carding a team total of 603 to defeat host Northwood by 13 strokes. Leading the Mustangs was first-year player Marc Sambol (bottom left) with a two-stroke victory over Benjamin Belfield of Northwood. All five SMU golfers finished in the top 8 of the 2-day event, with freshman Aaron Stewart and senior Frank Wrenn tying for 3rd, first-year Matt Schovee tying for 6th and sophomore Nicholas Soglanich taking 8th. Read more.

March 5, 2009|Sports|

Hot Links: Red/Blue Game 2008 set for April 5

Jillian Samuels, SMUSophomore guard Jillian Samuels (left) sank 4 three-pointers to establish a new SMU record for shots from long range in an NCAA Tournament game during the Mustangs’ 75-62 loss to Notre Dame in the first round of the 2008 tournament, March 23 at Purdue University’s Mackey Arena. Samuels also raised her single-season three-pointer total to 72, another SMU record. The women’s basketball team ends the 2007-08 season with a school-record 24 wins. Read more.

The football team‘s 2008 Red & Blue Game will take place at 1 p.m. April 5 in Ford Stadium. At 7 p.m., the men’s soccer team faces Tyler Junior College in a night-cap scrimmage at Westcott Field. Admission to both games is free. Read more.

March 27, 2008|Sports|
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