Saturday, November 23 • 1:05 p.m. ET
Internet: ESPN3 - Dan Gutowsky (play-by-play) and Bob Chmiel (color analyst)
Live Stats: CMUChippewas.com
Radio: Central Michigan IMG Sports Network - Don Chiodo (play-by-play), Brock Gutierrez (analyst) and (reporter)
CMU News and Notes
SETTING THE SCENE
• Central Michigan (4-6, 3-3) will kick off a two-game home stand to finish out the 2013 regular season on Saturday when it hosts UMass (1-9, 1-5) at Kelly/Shorts Stadium.
• The cross-divisional MAC contest is scheduled for a 1:05 p.m. kick off and will be streamed online on ESPN3 with Dan Gutowsky (play-by-play) and Bob Chmiel (color analyst) calling the action.
• Central Michigan is 1-2 at home this season while UMass is 0-4 on the road.
• Fans can redeem their football ticket at Ticket Central, located in the McGuirk Arena atrium, following the game and receive a general admission ticket to the CMU-Cal State Northridge men’s basketball game at 7:30 p.m.
CENTRAL MICHIGAN-UMASS SERIES
• Central Michigan has faced UMass just one other time in program history, last season’s meeting at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Mass.
• CMU doubled up the Minutemen, 42-21, getting 185 yards rushing and four touchdowns from Zurlon Tipton to claim the team’s sixth win of the season and gain bowl eligibility for the first time since 2009.
• Central Michigan needs to win its final two regular season games in order to become bowl eligible for the second straight season.
• CMU is looking to finish the regular season with three consecutive wins for the second straight season.
• Senior running back Zurlon Tipton is back in the line-up despite playing with seven screws still in place in his surgically-repaired ankle, which he broke in the season opener versus Michigan.
• Junior quarterback Cody Kater, who suffered a broken collarbone in the first quarter against Michigan, is back on the practice field and is serving as the third quarterback.
• Junior receiver Titus Davis needs just 64 yards to reach the 1,000-receiving yard benchmark for the first time in his career.
• Junior linebacker Justin Cherocci is one tackle shy of recording 100-plus stops for the second consecutive season.
• Zurlon Tipton, Titus Davis and senior punter Richie Hogan are positioned to either move up in career statistical rankings or on pace to make a mark in the CMU record book this season.
ANNESE NAMED MAC PLAYER OF THE WEEK
• Redshirt freshman safety Tony Annese was honored as MAC West Defensive Player of the Week for his standout performance in Central Michigan’s 27-22 road win over rival Western Michigan
• In his first career start, Annese played a pivotal role in bringing the Victory Cannon back to Mount Pleasant.
• The Hartland native scored the game-winning touchdown late in the third quarter, intercepting Broncos quarterback Zach Terrell and returning it 34 yards for a score, providing CMU what would prove to be an insurmountable 27-16 lead.
• He also made two other big plays, breaking up a pass on a key third down late in the game and forcing a bad throw on a fake reverse/wide receiver pass with pressure.
• Annese finished the game with a career-high seven tackles.
• Annese is the second Chippewa to earn conference defensive player of the week honors this season. Sophomore safety Kavon Frazier was recognized on October 14 following CMU’s 26-23 road win over Ohio.
CHEROCCI NOMINATED FOR BURLSWORTH TROPHY
• Junior linebacker Justin Cherocci has been named a nominee for the Burlsworth Trophy, an award presented to the most outstanding collegiate football player who began his career as a walk-on.
• Cherocci came to CMU as a preferred walk-on following a standout prep career at Brother Rice High School during which he led the state of Michigan in tackles as a junior (193) and senior (220).
• After redshirting at CMU in 2010 and seeing limited action in 2011, the Rochester Hills native secured a starting spot as a sophomore and quickly established himself as an anchor of the CMU defense and one of the top linebackers in the MAC.
• In 2012, Cherocci earned CMU Co-Defensive Player of the Year honors, leading the team and ranking fifth in the MAC and 19th nationally with 132 total tackles.
• Following the season, he was awarded a scholarship.
• This season, though 10 games, Cherocci ranks second on the team with 99 total tackles, including 8.5 for a loss, and first with 4.0 sacks.
• His average of 9.9 tackles per game ranks second in the MAC behind only teammate and fellow Brother Rice grad Shamari Benton.
CMU OFFENSIVE NOTEBOOK
• With 29 for his career, senior running back Zurlon Tipton needs two rushing touchdowns to earn a share of sixth place (Brian Pruitt, 1992-94) in the CMU record book.
• Redshirt freshman quarterback Cooper Rush (2,036) breached the 2,000-yard passing plateau for the season in the win over Western Michigan.
• Junior wide receiver Titus Davis ranks No. 1 in the NCAA in with a career yards per reception average of 18.9.
• Davis has had at least one reception in every game in which he has played at CMU, a streak of 33 contests, and has two 90-plus yard touchdown receptions for his career.
• Junior left guard Andy Phillips and redshirt sophomore center Nick Beamish have been mainstays up in the middle on the CMU offensive line the past two seasons, starting each of the last 23 games.
• Junior Deon Butler leads all CMU tight ends with 10 receptions but senior Connor Odykirk (2) and junior Mike Kinville (1) have accounted for all three touchdowns from the position in 2013.
CMU DEFENSIVE NOTEBOOK
• CMU linebackers Justin Cherocci and Shamari Benton have combined for 459 tackles over the last 23 games, an average of nearly 20 tackles per game (19.9).
• Cherocci leads CMU with 4.0 sacks despite not having any in the 23 games in which he played prior to this season.
• Sophomore safety Kavon Frazier leads CMU with five pass-break ups and has been involved in a team-high five turnovers this season (3 INT, 1 FF, 1 FR).
• Senior linebacker Shamari Benton ranks first among all active CMU players with 298 career total tackles and 12.5 tackles for loss.
• Senior safety Avery Cunningham owns the nation’s second longest start streak among safeties at 41 consecutive.
• Junior safety Kevin King and redshirt freshman safety Tony Annese each made his first career start in the win over Western Michigan.
• Seven different Chippewas have recorded an interception this season while a total of 12 have notched at least a half-sack.
CMU SPECIAL TEAMS NOTEBOOK
• Senior punter Richie Hogan ranks second in the MAC with a 44.2 yards per kick average and owns the conference’s second (77 vs. Ball State) and third longest (67 vs. Michigan) punts this season.
• CMU leads the MAC in kickoff returns, averaging 22.5 yards per run back.
LAST TIME OUT
• Central Michigan brought the Victory Cannon trophy back to Mount Pleasant with a 27-22 victory at Western Michigan.
• Senior running back Zurlon Tipton led Central Michigan to the victory with 114 yards on 29 carries and two touchdowns while junior receiver Titus Davis caught nine balls for 122 yards.
• CMU’s defense played a big role in the victory, coming up with a game-winning stop as Zach Terrell’s pass to Corey Davis fell incomplete to turn the ball over on downs with just 1:48 left in the game.
• The defense also scored the game-winning touchdown, as redshirt freshman safety Tony Annese picked off Terrell and took it back 34 yards to put CMU up 27-16 with 1:10 left in the third quarter.
• CMU survived despite turning the ball over five times on three interceptions and two fumbles.
• Redshirt freshman quarterback Cooper Rush finished the day 16-of-25 for 167 yards and one touchdown.
• Senior linebacker Shamari Benton led the defense with 14 tackles, including 1.5 for a loss, while Kevin King added 10 tackles and Justin Cherocci recorded seven stops and a sack.
NEXT UP FOR THE CHIPPEWAS
• Central Michigan will finish out the 2013 regular season at home hosting rival Eastern Michigan on the day after Thanksgiving with the Michigan MAC Trophy on the line.
• The Senior Day battle is scheduled for a 2 p.m. kick off on Friday, Nov. 29 at Kelly/Shorts Stadium and will streamed online by ESPN3.
• The Chippewas have more wins against the Eagles than any other MAC school (56) and have taken three of the last four meetings, including last season’s 34-31 victory in Ypsilanti.
TIPTON RETURNS STRONG
• In just his second game since returning from a broken ankle suffered in the season opener versus Michigan, senior running back Zurlon Tipton was CMU’s workhorse in the run game versus Western Michigan, helping lead the Chippewas to a 27-22 victory.
• Playing with seven screws still in his surgically repaired ankle, Tipton, a team co-captain, rushed for 114 yards on 29 carries and two touchdowns.
• He helped CMU jump out to a 14-0 first quarter lead, scoring on TD runs of 10 yards and one yard.
• The 100-yard rushing game was the 10th of his career.
• With 29 rushing touchdowns for his career, Tipton ranks seventh all-time in the CMU record book.
• Tipton officially returned to the line-up versus Ball State on November 6, rushing for a one-yard score.
• Tipton attained star status in 2012, rushing for 1,492 yards and 19 touchdowns, earning Second Team All-MAC and team MVP honors.
DAVIS HEADLINES CMU RECEIVING CORPS
• Junior receiver Titus Davis is having is having his best year statistically in 2013, proving again why he deserves consideration among the nation’s top pass catchers.
• One week after torching New Hampshire for 184 yards and two touchdowns in the home opener, junior receiver Titus Davis caught eight balls for 116 yards and
one score against UNLV.
• Versus Toledo and North Carolina State, he caught a combined 10 passes for 156 yards and one touchdown.
• Against No. 23 NIU, Davis had five catches for 109 yards and one touchdown.
• In front of a national television audience against Ball State, he caught nine passes for 187 yards and one touchdown.
• By virtue of catching nine passes for 122 yards in the win over Western Michigan, his 10th-career 100-yard receiving game and fifth this season, Davis established career season highs in receptions (52) and receiving yards (936).
• Davis is ranked No. 1 in the MAC in yards per catch (18.0) and No. 2 in receiving yards per game, averaging 101.8.
• With 2,547 career yards, the Biletnikoff Award preseason nominee ranks sixth all-time among Chippewa receivers.
• He needs just two receiving touchdowns to equal his career best of eight, which he posted in both 2011 and 2012.
• With 22 career touchdowns, Davis is tied for second in the CMU record book with former Chippewa great and current NFL star Antonio Brown.
• Davis continues to lead all active Division I players with a career 18.9 yards per catch average and ranks ninth in receiving yards per game (77.2).
HOGAN HAVING STANDOUT SENIOR SEASON
• Senior punter Richie Hogan is having not only his best season as a Chippewa but is on pace to have one of the greatest in program history.
• Hogan currently boasts a 44.2 yards per punt average, which ranks second in the MAC and 14th nationally.
• If the Laguna Hills, Calif. native maintains his current pace, his season would rank No. 2 all-time in the CMU record book, behind only Art Texeira’s 44.5 average in 1948.
• Hogan has placed 13 of his kicks inside the 20-yard line and just four of his 46 punts have been touchbacks.
• He also owns the MAC second longest punt this season, a 77-yard effort versus Ball State, and third longest, a 67-yarder against Michigan.
• Hogan already appears in the CMU record book, as his 2012 season average of 41.8 ranks fourth all-time.
SIX CHIPPEWAS EARN MIDSEASON HONORS
• Six Chippewas received Midseason All-MAC honors by Phil Steele in recognition of their standout performances through the first half of the 2013 season.
• Junior wide receiver Titus Davis, senior linebacker Shamari Benton and junior linebacker Justin Cherocci headlined the Central Michigan honorees, earning first team recognition.
• Senior safety Avery Cunningham was named to the second team while sophomore running back Saylor Lavallii and redshirt sophomore center Nick Beamish received third team honors.
• Davis leads CMU in receptions (52) , receiving yards (936) and receiving touchdowns (6) and tops the MAC with a 18.0 yards per reception average.
• Benton ranks first in the MAC in tackles per game (10.2) while Cherocci is second (9.9).
• Cunningham ranks third on the team with 70 tackles.
• Lavallii has rushed for 785 yards and five touchdowns in eight starts.
• Beamish, who has started 23 consecutive games, including all nine this season, anchors the middle of CMU’s young offensive line.
• Central Michigan’s 2013 schedule features several oddities; none more unusual than the situation the Chippewas experienced during mid-October to early November.
• CMU played one football game between October 20 and November 15, a total of 26 days – the November 6 match-up with Ball State.
• The Chippewas will not play on three consecutive Saturdays – October 26, November 2 and November 9.
• In addition, Central Michigan is just one of 11 Division I teams to play three consecutive road games in 2013.
• With four road games in the span of five weeks, including visits to Nevada, North Carolina and two trips to Ohio, CMU logged over 5,800 travel miles
RUSH TRIGGERS CMU OFFENSE
• Redshirt freshman quarterback Cooper Rush has taken the reins of the CMU offense, starting the last eight games.
• Rush saw his first collegiate action in week two in the home opener versus New Hampshire, rallying the Chippewas to a 24-21 victory after entering the game in the second quarter.
• He led the Central offense on four scoring drives, including a late-game drive to set up the game-winning field goal.
• Rush finished the game completing 19-of-32 passes for 326 yards and three touchdowns, including a 97-yard scoring strike to Titus Davis, becoming the first CMU freshman quarterback to throw for 300 yards since Dan LeFevour had 314 in the MAC Championship game on November 30, 2006.
• He made his first career start in week three at UNLV, throwing for 265 yards and one touchdown with two interceptions.
• On the road at MAC East Division favorite Ohio, he helped lead CMU to the 26-23 upset win, throwing for 224 yards, completing 20 passes to 10 different receivers, and three touchdowns, including the game winner with 22 seconds remaining.
• Versus No. 23 NIU, Rush tossed two first quarter touchdown passes, helping CMU jump out to a 14-7 lead.
• Against Ball State, he recorded his first career rushing touchdown, a 26-yard scamper.
• Rush currently ranks third in the MAC in passing yards per game, averaging 225.1.
• The Charlotte, Mich. native was named CMU Offensive Scout Player of the Year in 2012.
• As a senior at Lansing Catholic High School in 2011, Rush led his team to a 13-1 record and a state runner-up finish.
• The owner of Michigan high school records for touchdown passes in a quarter (5), half (7), game (8) and season (48), he was named the Gatorade Michigan Football Player of the Year and Associated Press Division 5/6 Player of the Year as a senior.
• Coming out of high school, Rush was ranked No. 21 on the Detroit Free Press Fab 50, No. 25 on Detroit News Blue Chip list and No. 12 on the Lansing State Journal’s Catch 22 list.
TOP TACKLING TANDEM
• Two of CMU’s top defensive playmakers, junior linebacker Justin Cherocci and senior linebacker Shamari Benton, are again enjoying standout seasons.
• Cherocci ranks second in the MAC in tackles per game (9.9) and tops CMU with 4.0 sacks.
• Cherocci dominated versus UNH, collecting a game-high 13 tackles and forcing two fumbles, including one late in the game that would set up CMU’s game-winning field goal.
• He tied for the team lead with 11 tackles at UNLV, including 2.5 for a loss, and equaled a career high with 15 stops versus Toledo.
• Versus NIU, Cherocci recorded his first career interception to go along with 11 tackles.
• CMU’s Co-Defensive Player of the Year in 2012, Cherocci led the team with 132 total tackles last season and was the nation’s leader in assisted tackles with 89.
• Benton ranks first in the MAC in tackles per game (10.2) and second in total tackles (102).
• He equaled his career best in wins over Ohio and Western Michigan , racking up 14 stops.
• Benton has recorded seven double-digit tackles games this season.
• Benton topped the team in solo tackles (54) and fumble recoveries (2) a year ago and was CMU’s leading tackler in seven of 13 games.
• Over the past 23 games, Cherocci and Benton have combined for 459 tackle, an average of nearly 20 tackles per game (19.9).
LAVALLII STARRED AS STARTER
• Sophomore running back Saylor Lavallii more than capably filled in during Zurlon Tipton’s absence, establishing himself as a force in the CMU backfield.
• In the win over Ohio, Lavallii set career highs in rushing attempts (26) and rushing yards (184), highlighted by three runs of 30 or more yards.
• He also caught his first career touchdown pass versus the Bobcats, a crucial seven-yard scoring reception in the fourth quarter that reclaimed the lead for the Chippewas at 19-17.
• Lavallii also contributed strong performances versus Toledo (144 yards) and Miami (Ohio) (151 yards).
• Thus far this season, he has put together three 100-yard games and two two-touchdown efforts.
• Versus NIU, Lavallii surpassed the 1,000-yard rushing mark for his career.
• With two games remaining in the regular season, Lavallii needs 215 yards to reach the 1,000-yard barrier for the year.
GAINER SETTLED IN AT END
• In late June, the Central Michigan football program announced the addition of former Michigan State defensive end Jeremy Gainer to its roster for the 2013 season.
• Gainer has made an impact in 2013, as he has started all 10 games this season at left defensive end and is first among defensive lineman with 36 total tackles and has 2.0 sacks.
• A two-year letterwinner, Gainer finished his MSU career with 13 tackles in 28 career games.
• In 2011, the Detroit native appeared in all 14 games, recording 11 tackles and two fumbles.
• Gainer made the switch to defensive end prior to the2012 season, seeing action in all 13 games.
• Gainer graduated from Michigan State with a degree in hospitality business and will have one
year of eligibility remaining.
• He was a two-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree for the Spartans.
INJURY BUG BITES
• CMU starting quarterback Cody Kater (collarbone) and running back Zurlon Tipton (ankle) suffered serious injuries in the first quarter of the season opener versus Michigan.
• Kater, a junior, earned his first career start for the Chippewas after winning a three-way quarterback battle that was waged throughout the spring and preseason camps.
• Kater has missed the last nine games but could potentially return to the field this season.
• Tipton attained star status in 2012, rushing for 1,492 yards and 19 touchdowns, earning Second Team All-MAC and team MVP honors.
• Tipton, who was elected by his teammates as a team captain for the 2013 season, was a preseason
Maxwell and Doak Walker Award candidate.
• Remarkably, Tipton returned to the line-up against Ball State, rushing for a touchdown, and then posted 114 rushing yards and two scores versus Western Michigan.
• Senior left tackle Jake Olson was lost for the season after breaking his wrist late in the win over
• Olson was named preseason First Team All-MAC by Phil Steele and second team by Athlon Sports.
• Sophomore defensive tackle Jabari Dean was also declared out for the season following the UNLV game.
• Dean started 10 games as a freshman and was named CMU’s 2012 Defensive Rookie of the Year.
• Junior Matt Losiniecki, another starter at defensive tackle, will miss the remainder of the season after being injured against Western Michigan.
• Losiniecki, who was also out five games in the middle of the season due to injury, had eight tackles and a half-sack in 2013.
• Redshirt sophomore receiver Jesse Kroll was lost for the season prior to the North Carolina State game with an ankle injury.
• Kroll was becoming a key part of CMU’s receiver rotation, catching five passes for 85 yards.
• Also out for the season due to injury are redshirt sophomore defensive tackle Ben Randle, senior fullback Ben Masztak and redshirt freshman receiver Anthony Rice.
KATER TABBED AS STARTING QB
• CMU head coach Dan Enos announced in later August that junior Cody Kater would start at quarterback for the Chippewas in the 2013 season opener versus Michigan.
• Kater vied with redshirt sophomore Alex Niznak and redshirt freshman Cooper Rush throughout training camp for the starting spot.
• Kater was lost early in 2013 opener at Michigan, breaking his collarbone, but has been practicing on a limited basis and served as the emergency quarterback versus Ball State and Western Michigan.
• Kater transferred to CMU from Grand Rapids Community College, where he guided the Raiders to a perfect 11-0 record in 2011, directing an offense that averaged 50 points and 509 yards per game.
• A native of Montague, Mich., Kater led the MHS Wildcats to back-to-back state championships
and a combined record of 27-1 in 2008 and 2009.
• A two-time all-state, all-area and all-conference selection at quarterback, he was named the Associated Press Division 5-6 Player of the Year as a senior.
• Kater was ranked No. 11 on the Detroit News Blue Chip list and No. 14 on the Detroit Free Press Fab 50 following his senior season.
CMU ANNOUNCES FUTURE NON-CONFERENCE OPPONENTS
• Central Michigan recently announced additions to its non-conference schedule for the 2014, 2015 and 2016 seasons.
• In 2014, CMU will open the season at home on August 28 versus Chattanooga, in the first-ever meeting between the programs.
• Central will also host Syracuse in 2014, welcoming the Orange to Kelly/Shorts Stadium on September 13.
• The Chippewas will then travel to Syracuse in 2015 for a meeting MAC-ACC clash on September 19.
• In 2016, CMU will kickoff the campaign on September 1 by hosting Presbyterian.
• That same season, Central will visit Virginia on September 24.
• One date remains to be filled, a September 12, 2015 contest against a FCS opponent.
YOUTH SERVING AT QUARTERBACK
• Central Michigan was just one of 11 teams in the nation to enter the 2013 season with no quarterbacks on its roster that have started an FBS game.
• Junior Cody Kater redshirted while at Cincinnati in 2010, started every game at the junior college level in 2011 and saw action in two games for CMU in 2012 but the season opener versus Michigan was his first career Division I start.
• Redshirt sophomore Alex Niznak appeared in relief of Kater versus Michigan and started versus New Hampshire.
• Redshirt freshman Cooper Rush made his first career appearance against UNH, throwing for 326 yards and three touchdowns, and made his first career start at UNLV.
• The other FBS programs that entered 2013 with zero career QB starts on their rosters are Baylor, California, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Iowa, Louisiana Tech, Penn State, Syracuse, Texas Tech and Virginia.
ENOS IN EXCLUSIVE CLUB
• Dan Enos is just one of four active Division I coaches to win a bowl game both as a starting quarterback and a head coach.
• As a player, Enos quarterbacked Michigan State to back-to-back bowl victories, a 33-13 win over Hawaii in the 1989 Aloha Bowl and a 17-16 win over Southern California in the 1990 John Hancock Bowl.
• In 2012, he led the Chippewas to the program’s third ever bowl win, a 24-21 victory over Western Kentucky in the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl.
• Steve Spurrier (South Carolina), Steve Sarkisian (Washington), and Mike Gundy (Oklahoma State) have also accomplished the feat.
FIRST CAREER STARTS
• At least two Chippewas made their first career starts through each of the 2013 season’s first four games, including three quarterbacks.
• In the season opener versus Michigan, four players earned their first career starts – quarterback Cody Kater, guard Cody Pettit, cornerback Brandon Greer and defensive end Jeremy Gainer.
• Against UNH, quarterback Alex Niznak, running back Saylor Lavallii and defensive end Louis Palmer made their first appearance in the starting line-up.
• Quarterback Cooper Rush (UNLV), offensive tackle Ramadan Ahmeti (UNLV), guard Connor Collins (Toledo) and defensive tackle Kelby Latta (Toledo) have also received their first starting nods through the first quarter of the 2013 campaign.
• Safeties Kevin King and Tony Annese increased the total number for the season when each started his first career game against Western Michigan.
2013 CMU TEAM CAPTAINS
• Senior running back Zurlon Tipton, junior guard Andy Phillips, senior linebacker Shamari Benton and senior safety Avery Cunningham will serve as team captains for the 2013, as elected by their fellow players.
• Tipton, who rushed for 1,492 yards and 19 touchdowns in 2012, earning Second Team All-MAC honors, was a Maxwell and Doak Walker Award candidate.
• Phillips, a junior who has started 27 games straight, is the veteran leader of the CMU offensive line.
• Named the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl Lineman of the Game, Benton second in the MAC with 102 tackles.
• Cunningham, who owns the nation’s longest start streak among safeties at 41 consecutive, ranks first among active CMU players with 163 career solo tackles.
CMU ON NATIONAL BROADCASTS
• All 12 Central Michigan football games are scheduled to be broadcast nationally in 2013.
• The Chippewas will appear on the ESPN family of networks 10 times this season, including last week’s clash with Ball State that was aired on ESPN2.
• Since the start of the 2007 season, CMU is 26-24 in 50 appearances on the ESPN family of networks (ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPN Plus, ESPN Regional, ESPN3), including the win over Western Kentucky in the 2012 Little Caesars Pizza Bowl on its flagship station.
• CMU faced Michigan on the Big Ten Network in the season opener and played UNLV on the Mountain West Network/Campus Insiders.
• CMU is 2-3 all-time on the BTN, topping Indiana, 37-34, in 2008 and Iowa, 32-31, in 2012 while falling to Purdue (32-25) in 2008, Northwestern (30-25) in 2010, and Michigan (59-9) in 2013.
CHIPPEWAS IN THE NFL
• Eight former Chippewas currently reside on NFL rosters.
• Eric Fisher, the No. 1 pick in the 2013 NFL Draft, along with linebacker Frank Zombo, a former Super Bowl champion with the Green Bay Packers, are members of the Kansas City Chiefs.
• Offensive tackle Joe Staley, a 2011 Pro Bowler and CMU’s first-ever first round draft choice, played in Super Bowl XVVII as a member of the San Francisco 49ers.
• Antonio Brown serves as the No. 1 receiver for the Pittsburgh Steelers and is quarterback Ben Roethlisberger’s top target.
• Former Super Bowl champion Cullen Jenkins is a starter at defensive tackle for the New York Giants.
• Linebacker Nick Bellore is a key special teams player for the New York Jets and was on the 2012 Pro Bowl ballot.
• Safety Jahleel Addae, a three-time All-MAC selection, made the San Diego Chargers’ 53-man roster as an undrafted rookie free agent and has earned playing time in their nickel package and on special teams.
• Josh Gordy, who has also played for the St. Louis Rams and Green Bay Packers, is a reserve cornerback for the Indianapolis Colts.
THREE ADDITIONS TO COACHING STAFF
• George Ricumstrict, a former All-MAC linebacker and assistant coach at Central Michigan from 2000-03, has returned to Mount Pleasant to coach the Chippewas’ defensive line.
• Gino Guidugli, who served as a graduate assistant at CMU from 2009-11, was brought back on staff to lead the running back corps and serve as recruiting coordinator.
• Head coach Dan Enos also hired Archie Collins, a former defensive graduate assistant at Michigan State, in the offseason, adding him to his staff to coach the cornerbacks.
MAC ANNOUNCES NEW FUTURE BOWL LINE-UPS
• The Mid-American Conference has announced partnerships with three newly-created bowl games that are scheduled to begin in 2014 and a tie-in with another to begin in 2016.
• In August, the MAC added the Camellia Bowl, which will be based in Montgomery, Ala. and will be owned and operated by ESPN.
• The Camellia Bowl will feature a MAC bowl eligible football program to face a member of the Sun Belt Conference for the next six consecutive football seasons (2014-2019) in a pre-Christmas game televised nationally by ESPN or ESPN2.
• The Camellia Bowl will be played in the Cramton Bowl, a 25,000-seat stadium that has undergone significant renovations over the last several years, including a new press box facility, locker rooms and VIP hospitality accommodations.
• Central Michigan has some prominent history associated with a bowl bearing the same name. CMU won the 1974 Camellia Bowl, earning the program the Division II national championship.
• Then based in Sacramento, Calif., the Chippewas trounced Delaware, 54-14, to bring the title to Mount Pleasant.
• In October, the MAC announced affiliations with the Boca Raton and Bahamas Bowls.
• The MAC will partner with the Boca Raton Bowl for a six-year period (2014-2019).
• The Boca Raton Bowl will be a pre-Christmas bowl game and will be televised nationally on ESPN or ESPN2.
• The Boca Raton Bowl will be played at FAU Stadium, an open-air stadium opened in 2011 which seats nearly 30,000 fans on the campus of Florida Atlantic University.
• The MAC will play Conference USA in the Boca Raton Bowl in 2014 and the American Athletic Conference in 2015.
• The MAC will also be associated with the Bahamas Bowl for a six-year period (2014-2019).
• The Bahamas Bowl will be played at Thomas A. Robinson Stadium in Nassau.
• The bowl will feature a MAC opponent versus the American Athletic Conference in 2014 and Conference USA in 2015.
• The MAC also announced a tie-in with the newly created Miami Beach Bowl to be played in Marlins Park in Miami, Fla.
• A MAC representative will play in the Miami Beach Bowl in the 2016 and 2018 bowl seasons as part of a rotation of FBS conferences.
GUIDUGLI INDUCTED INTO UC HALL OF FAME
• Central Michigan running backs coach/recruiting coordinator Gino Guidugli was inducted into the University of Cincinnati’s James P. Kelly Athletics Hall of Fame on October 28.
• Guidugli was UC’s starting quarterback from 2001-04 and is a charter member of the school’s Ring of Honor.
• The Fort Thomas, Ky. native holds the Bearcats’ career record for total yards (11,661), passing attempts (1,556), completions (880), passing yards (11,453) and touchdown passes (78).
• Guidugli assisted in coaching the receivers and the defensive scout team from 2009-2011 in his first stint at Central Michigan and is in his first year in his current role on head coach Dan Enos’ staff.