GOOD MORNING! Time to empty the notebook ...
• The first of the college football polls has arrived and UNH is ranked 17th nationally in the HERO Sports FCS Preseason Top 25 Poll.
The Wildcats return seven starters on offense, including sophomore-to-be quarterback Max Brosmer, and seven starters on defense to a team that went 6-5 last season. Oh, and they return coach Sean McDonnell, who sat out last season but is back on the job after a battle with cancer.
Other CAA teams that made the top 25: James Madison (fifth), Villanova (eighth), Delaware (15th) and Albany (24th). Both Dartmouth and Tony Trisciani’s Elon Phoenix received votes.
Now we just need a season.
• Two coaching hires to report from last week: Salem High’s football team promoted assistant coach Steve Abraham to the head coach’s position. Abraham starred for the Blue Devils in the 1990s as a two-way lineman.
Also, Franklin Pierce University made Caitlin Sweeney the head coach of the women’s lacrosse team. Sweeney, a 2018 FPU grad, was a Division II All-America selection for the Ravens during her playing career. Sweeney most recently served as an assistant coach at Division II Lincoln Memorial University in Harrogate, Tenn.
• The Dartmouth College athletic website has been offering an occasional “This Day in Dartmouth History” look-back. The May 21 entry featured lefty Mike Remlinger’s four-hit shutout (13 strikeouts) of Michigan in the NCAA tournament.
Remlinger went on to play 14 years in the majors, going 53-55 and never really living up to the great expectations after signing with the Giants. Red Sox fans may forgotten his eight games for Boston in 2005 when he posted a 14.85 ERA over 6 2/3 innings.
• Long Island University’s new hockey coach is Brett Riley, a former assistant at Colgate.
Hockey is in Riley’s blood. He’s the grandson of Dartmouth legend Jack Riley, who starred as a player for the Big Green then went on to coach the U.S. to its first “Miracle on Ice” gold medal at Squaw Valley in 1960. Jack Riley coached at Army for 36 years, winning 542 games. Rob Riley, Brett’s father, replaced his dad at Army and coached there for 18 seasons.
• If Manchester is ever interested in getting another pro hockey, the owner(s) will hold the key to success. After the last ECHL experience here, it’s imperative that ticket prices match the quality of the product. In the meantime, I’ll continue to swing by Durham and “settle” for watching top NHL draft picks every weekend.
• Even diehard NASCAR fans must be a bit tired of Darlington and Charlotte. Help arrives today at 3:30 p.m. with the Cup Series race at the short-track Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway.
• Biff Benedict Pocoroba, the starting catcher on my all-time name team, died Wednesday at 66. Biff played all 10 years of his MLB career with the Atlanta Braves, batting .257. Known for his solid defense, Biff did make the National League All-Star team in 1978 and caught the final out (teammate Phil Niekro pitching) of the NL’s 7-3 win.
• We would have liked to say a fond farewell to McCoy Stadium and the Pawtucket Red Sox this summer, but that’s not going to happen now, is it?
• In case you were wondering why Elvis Presley needed that personal item that is now up for sale (Thursday’s Back Page), the King loved touch football — even playing pickup games at Graceland — and also enjoyed racquetball and karate.
Elvis did play tackle football at his Memphis high school, but quit to get a part-time job at a grocery store.
The rest, as they say, is history.