Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Spring Cleaning

Lest you think that SHOUT fell into a deep hole, I'll begin by agreeing that the lapse since the last post was longer than intended--things have certainly been busy around here! Time to clean up the outstanding issues, at least briefly, so that we get all caught up to June...

The 2008 Big South Baseball Championship wrapped up with Coastal Carolina taking the title, and, while it should not be considered a surprise to see the top seed snag the win, the tournament did have its share of drama--including Liberty's surge to push Coastal into a second and deciding game on the last day of play.

Since then, the Chanticleers hosted one of the NCAA Baseball Regionals and dispatched the visitors (Alabama, East Carolina, Columbia) to advance to this weekend's "Super Regional" at the North Carolina Tar Heels. The games will be played at Cary, NC, on Saturday (12pm), Sunday (1pm), and Monday if necessary (time TBA), and all carried on the ESPN family of networks.

Meanwhile, outdoor track marches on with continued success, and the Big South powered through the NCAA Regional meet to place ten male automatic qualifiers to Nationals and one female at-large participant. The Men's OTF representation of the Big South exceeds that of most of the nation's college conferences and falls behind only ten leagues (largely of the major college heavyweight variety). Congratulations to all these stellar athletes who have gone farther, faster, or higher than the competition to reach the highest level--great job, everyone!

Don't forget that as the year has been putting on its final touches in the fields of play, additional action has been going on behind the scenes on behalf of the institutions and student-athletes of the Big South Conference with the annual Spring Meetings. All last week, the member school CEOs (presidents, chancellors, etc.), Directors of Athletics, and other upper-level administrators joined the Conference Staff for a series of meetings and discussions on a variety of issues facing the Big South in the coming seasons. I won't belabor the fine points here, but in coming installments we may touch on a few of the decisions and how they will impact what you see as a fan in terms of championship events, team standings, and other such matters.

Finally, a couple of individual notes of gratitude--
First, we thank Bernadette McGlade, who has done a commendable job as Coordinator of Officials for the Big South in women's basketball (alongside her duties as part of the Atlantic Coast Conference)...she is moving on to be the new Commissioner of the Atlantic 10 Conference and we wish her all the best!

Next, we salute Associate Commissioner James Companion, who has completed ten great years of service in Big South Conference Marketing, where he has taken Conference partnerships and sponsorships beyond all expectations. Fortunately for us, James is just celebrating that anniversary and is not going anywhere else (or so we hope)!

Thanks also to all our viewers and contributors who kept The EDGE alive and well this year, as we enjoyed a slate of about 525 streamed events--unprecedented in Big South Conference history. That will be a tough act to follow in the coming academic/athletic year, but we'll certainly give it a shot...

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