Archive for NCAA



Whitney Jennings Signs

LOGANSPORT, Ind. – She’s the type of player who normally comes along just once in a coach’s career, but Logansport head coach Jerry Hoover has been fortunate to have now coached two such players. In the late 1970’s, Hoover was the boys head coach at Ben Davis and had the opportunity to coach former Indiana University great Randy Wittman. Heaven smiled down on Hoover for a second time as he now is entering his last season coaching senior Whitney Jennings, who is one of the frontrunners for this seasons prestigious Indiana Miss Basketball honor.

Hoover and the Logansport community will not want this season to end as Jennings takes her game to the University of Iowa next year to begin her career as a Hawkeye. Over her career with the Berries, Jennings has put up some amazing numbers and will only add to them this year. An average year for Jennings could place her within the top 10 all-time scorers in the state. Entering her fourth season with the Lady Berries, Jennings had already accumulated 1,778 points, 498 assists, 264 steals, and 282 rebounds. That is an average of 24.4 points, 6.8 assists, 3.6 steals and 3.9 rebounds per game – numbers certainly worthy of a Miss Basketball winner. During that three-year span, the Berries have gone 62-11 and are currently the two-time defending undefeated North Central Conference champs.

After her junior season, Jennings picked up some impressive honors that include: Associated Press All-State 1st Team, Indiana Basketball Coaches Association Underclass First Team, Hoosier Basketball Magazine 1st Team, Indiana Coaches of Girls Sports Association First Team. She was also a core member of the Indiana Junior All-Star Team.

The start of the 2013-2014 campaign has not been a disappointment, either. The Class 4A No. 6-ranked Berries are a perfect 12-0 and have defeated Howard County squads Kokomo and Class 3A No. 6 Western. And on Dec. 21, Jennings tossed in 45 points en route to an 84-72 win over Anderson, and in the process, passed Caleb Springer’s 2,042 career point total to become the schools all-time leading scorer. She also grabbed 11 rebounds in the Anderson game for a double-double. The previous game, she scored 39 points and swiped eight steals against Harrison and was named the Indiana Basketball Coaches Association/Subway Player of the Week for District 1.

She also earned IBCA/Subway Player of the Week honors during the second week of the season when she averaged 35.5 points, 7 rebounds, 9.5 assists and 10.5 steals. During that two-game, seven-day span, she scored a triple-double with a 30 point, 13 assist and 11 steal performance against Maconaquah. And against Kokomo, she scored 41 points and tallied 10 steals for a double-double.

Contrary to belief, there is more to Jennings than just being an unbelievable basketball player – she is also an outstanding student. She entered her senior year ranked seventh in her class with a 4.17 GPA. She is a member of Logansport High School National Honor Society and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

In addition to basketball, Jennings has earned four varsity letters in soccer and was named to the 2012 and the 2013 Indiana Soccer Coaches Association District 3 First Team.

And if that is not enough, she completes her athletic season as the No. 1 singles in tennis for LHS and has a career record of 68-6. The LHS girls tennis team has been the NCC champion in 2012 and sectional champion during all three of her years. Jennings was also the individual sectional champion in 2012 and 2013 and was named Honorable Mention All-State in singles by the Indiana High School Tennis Coaches Association in 2012 and 2013.

“This is crazy, it’s all gone by so fast. I think about my freshman year and it seems just like yesterday,” said Jennings.

When asked about the possibility of being named Miss Basketball, Jennings was fairly low key about the issue.

“Winning Miss Basketball is something that I’ve always thought would be pretty cool,” said the sharpshooter. “It’s something a lot of girls think about when they’re little. But honestly, it isn’t something that I think about very much. It would definitely be a great honor and a great boost to the community but it isn’t something I spend time thinking about.”

Members of the Berries basketball team recently returned from a goodwill tour of China. While there, they were able to meet students from their sister school and at times display some of their basketball skills.

“It was really a neat experience,” said Jennings. “Our first stop was in Beijing and we got to see so much of the history there. Wherever we went the people were so accepting of us and treated us so well. They applauded when we came in, they had bands that played for us, and we stayed at the best hotels. It was just an amazing trip that I’m glad we made.”

The Berries are once again relying heavily on Jennings, and if she delivers as she has the past three seasons, then the Hawkeye bound senior will end her career with legendary Hoosier names like Shanna Zolman, Stephanie White, and Skylar Diggins.

(Story courtesy of the Kokomo Herald, Rick Conrad and Dean Hockney)


Big Ten Council of Presidents and Chancellors Statement on Penn State

We must begin first and foremost, by again expressing our great sorrow for all of those whose lives have been so grievously harmed by the series of failures at Penn State University, particularly the lives of the young victims and their families.

Since November 2011, when the underlying indictments were first announced, the Big Ten Conference Council of Presidents and Chancellors (COPC) committed to a prudent, thoughtful and patient review of the various investigative and adjudicatory processes associated with allegations at Penn State University involving Jerry Sandusky, Joe Paterno, Tim Curley, Gary Schultz and Graham Spanier.  In December 2011, Big Ten legal counsel, along with NCAA counsel, engaged in the independent investigation undertaken by Louis Freeh and his law firm, Freeh, Sporkin, & Sullivan, LLP.  At that time, the COPC reserved the right to impose sanctions, corrective or other disciplinary measures in this matter in the event that adverse findings were made in the areas of institutional control, ethical conduct and/or other Conference related matters.  The COPC also directed the Conference, at that time, to initiate an immediate review of the fundamental issues and systems affecting intercollegiate athletics, including those related to institutional control.

Today, we have read the NCAA release on Penn State University.  We note in the release, and have independently confirmed, that Penn State has accepted the factual findings in the July 12, 2012 Report of the Special Investigative Counsel prepared by Louis Freeh and his firm (the Freeh Report).  Based on the findings, as accepted by Penn State, we fully support the actions taken by the NCAA.  Further, following a thorough review of the Freeh Report, the COPC has voted to impose the following additional sanctions on Penn State, effective immediately:

Censure: The accepted findings support the conclusion that our colleagues at Penn State, individuals that we have known and with whom we have worked for many years, have egregiously failed on many levels—morally, ethically and potentially criminally.  They have failed their great university, their faculty and staff, their students and alumni, their community and state—and they have failed their fellow member institutions in the Big Ten Conference.  For these failures, committed at the highest level of the institution, we hereby condemn this conduct and officially censure Penn State.

Probation: The Big Ten Conference will be a party to the Athletic Integrity Agreement referenced in the NCAA release, and will work closely with the NCAA and Penn State to ensure complete compliance with its provisions over the 5 year term of the Agreement.

Ineligibility: As referenced in the NCAA release, Penn State’s football team will be ineligible for postseason bowl games.  It will also be ineligible for Big Ten Conference Championship Games for four years, a period of time that runs concurrently with the NCAA postseason bowl ban imposed this morning.

Fine: Because Penn State will be ineligible for bowl games for the next four years, it will therefore be ineligible to receive its share of Big Ten Conference bowl revenues over those same four years.  That money, estimated to be approximately $13 million, will be donated to established charitable organizations in Big Ten communities dedicated to the protection of children.

Penn State University is a great institution and has been a valued member of the Big Ten Conference for more than 20 years.  Since early November 2011, it has been working very hard to right a terrible wrong.   There is more to be done.  The intent of the sanctions imposed today is not to destroy a great university, but rather to seek justice and constructively assist a member institution with its efforts to reform.  From this day forward, as Penn State continues to make amends, the Big Ten conference and its member institutions will continue to engage with them in every aspect of conference membership.

As a result of the Conference review of issues and systems affecting intercollegiate athletics initiated in December 2011, we recognize that what occurred at Penn State University is a consequence of the concentration of power that can result from a successful athletic program and the failure of institutional leadership to maintain institutional control.  We further recognize our own responsibility to insure, within the context of our own institutions, sufficient control and responsibility over our athletic programs.  Our review has led to a document entitled Standards and Procedures for Safeguarding Institutional Control of Intercollegiate Athletics that is not yet final, but on schedule to be adopted by the COPC and implemented in the 2012/13 academic year under the auspices and oversight of the COPC.


Kent Cassella, Michigan State Assistant Vice President of Media Communications: “We fully support the NCAA, who has the authority and responsibility to act on what is clearly a tragic and difficult situation. Additionally, MSU and President Lou Anna K. Simon stand with the presidents and chancellors of the Big Ten institutions in the actions the conference announced today. This group of leaders has been fully engaged since last December with what has become an unprecedented situation. The measures announced today by both organizations speak for themselves.”