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2016-17 Schedules: Maryland-Eastern Shore Hawks

Head Coach Bobby Collins will be without his two senior leaders from a season ago, but will have a core group of returnees capable of leading the Hawks back into contention in the MEAC after a down 2015-16 season. (Source: Delmarva Now) (Header: UMES Athletics)
Head Coach Bobby Collins will be without his two senior leaders from a season ago, but will have a core group of returnees capable of leading the Hawks back into contention in the MEAC after a down 2015-16 season. (Source: Delmarva Now) (Header: UMES Athletics)

Maryland-Eastern Shore Hawks

2015-16 Record: 10-22 (7-9 in MEAC; Tied-6th)
Key Returnees: Bakari Copeland, Ryan Andino, Dontae Caldwell
Key Departures: Devin Martin, Dominique Elliott

2016-17 Schedule
(** Denotes Conference Play)

11/11/2016: @ George Washington Colonials
*Washington, DC

11/13/2016: v. UMBC Retrievers
*Princess Anne, MD

11/15/2016: @ Boston College Eagles
*Chestnut Hill, MA

11/20/2016: @ Wichita State Shockers
*Wichita, KS

11/23/2016: @ Colorado State Rams
*Fort Collins, CO

11/27/2016: @ Louisiana Tech Bulldogs
*Ruston, LA

11/30/2016: @ Southeastern Louisiana Golden Lions
*Hammond, LA

12/5/2016: v. Central Penn
*Princess Anne, MD

12/7/2016: @ Virginia Tech Hokies
*Blacksburg, VA

12/10/2016: @ Central Florida Knights
*Orlando, FL

12/17/2016: @ Michigan Wolverines
*Ann Arbor, MI

12/19/2016: @ American Univ. Eagles
*Washington, DC

12/21/2016: @ UTEP Miners (Don Haskins Sun Bowl Invitational)
*El Paso, TX

12/22/2016: TBD (Don Haskins Sun Bowl Invitational)
*El Paso, TX

1/2/2017: v. Valley Forge
*Princess Anne, MD

1/7/2017: @ North Carolina Central Eagles **
*Durham, NC

1/9/2017: @ North Carolina A&T Aggies **
*Greensboro, NC

1/14/2017: v. Howard Bison **
*Princess Anne, MD

1/21/2017: @ Bethune-Cookman Wildcats **
*Daytona Beach, FL

1/23/2017: @ Florida A&M Rattlers **
*Tallahassee, FL

1/28/2017: v. South Carolina State Bulldogs **
*Princess Anne, MD

1/30/2017: v. Savannah State Tigers **
*Princess Anne, MD

2/1/2017: @ Hampton Pirates **
*Hampton, VA

2/4/2017: v. Coppin State Eagles **
*Princess Anne, MD

2/11/2017: @ Norfolk State Spartans **
*Norfolk, VA

2/13/2017: v. Bethune-Cookman Wildcats **
*Princess Anne, MD

2/18/2017: v. North Carolina Central Eagles **
*Princess Anne, MD

2/20/2017: v. North Carolina A&T Aggies **
*Princess Anne, MD

2/25/2017: @ Delaware State Hornets **
*Dover, DE

2/27/2017: @ Howard Bison **
*Washington, DC

3/2/2017: v. Morgan State Bears **
*Princess Anne, MD

Five Names to Know in the MEAC for the 2016-17 Season

With several stars having moved on from the MEAC, Savannah State guard Troce Manassa is one of five names you need to know for the 2016-17 season. (Header Photo: NC A&T Athletics)
With several stars having moved on from the MEAC, Savannah State guard Troyce Manassa is one of five names you need to know for the 2016-17 season. (Header Photo: NC A&T Athletics)

For the casual fan, the smaller conferences don’t come into focus until the NCAA Tournament is near, and people are frantically trying to learn everything they can about the school their favourite team is playing in the First Round in the 1-vs-16 match-ups.

Teams in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) tend to fall into the category of ‘relative unknowns’ in the NCAA. Hardcore basketball fans know who’s who in the MEAC, and for good reason. The conference has been chalked full of talented players over the years, and the 2016-17 season is no different.

However, this season, the talented stars leading their respective programs are relatively unknown themselves. Stars like Quinton Chievous and Reginald Johnson, Jr. (Hampton Pirates), Devin Martin and Dominique Elliott (Maryland-Eastern Shore Hawks), and Cedric Blossom (Morgan State Bears) are all gone, among a slew of other marquee talents.

The likes of James DanielJordan PottsEd Stephens, and Patrick Cole are all back for another year, but people already know their names. There are plenty of other stars in the conference who may not get the attention that they deserve on a regular basis.

Here are five names that every basketball fan will want to know as the 2016-17 season approaches, and the journey towards the MEAC Championship and a spot in the NCAA Tournament heats up.
Continue reading Five Names to Know in the MEAC for the 2016-17 Season

Bakari Copeland Opts Out of 2016 NBA Draft, Returns to Maryland-Eastern Shore for Senior Season

On Friday, the Maryland-Eastern Shore Hawks received a boost for the 2016-17 season, as Bakari Copeland opted out of the 2016 NBA Draft and will return to Princess Anne, MD for his senior season. (Source: USA Today Sports)
On Friday, the Maryland-Eastern Shore Hawks received a boost for the 2016-17 season, as Bakari Copeland opted out of the 2016 NBA Draft and will return to Princess Anne, MD for his senior season. (Source: USA Today Sports)

With the recent changes to the NBA Draft process for underclassmen in the NCAA, the number of players who declared early for the draft increased this season in comparison to past years.

In the past, players had to make a final decision on whether or not to stay in the NBA Draft before the combine. This year, players could declare for the draft, not sign with an agent, and go through the pre-draft process (combine, individual team workouts, etc.). This allowed for players to see where they were projected to be selected, if at all, and gain feedback from executives and scouts from around the NBA.

The deadline for a final decision this year is May 25th.

Several talented mid-major players opted to go through the process, but many were expected to return to school for the 2016-17 season. It doesn’t hurt to get the extra feedback, and going through the process can help spread the word about your talents.

One player who took that route was Bakari Copeland. After a strong 2015-16 season, he opted to declare early for the NBA Draft. While many expected him to return to school, it wasn’t until Friday afternoon that he made his final decision.

Copeland will be returning to the Maryland-Eastern Shore Hawks for his senior year in 2016-17.

Continue reading Bakari Copeland Opts Out of 2016 NBA Draft, Returns to Maryland-Eastern Shore for Senior Season

2015-16 Year in Review: Back to the Drawing Board for the Maryland-Eastern Shore Hawks

Senior forward Dominique Elliott and the Maryland-Eastern Shore Hawks took a step backwards after their breakout campaign in 2014-15. (Source: UMES Sports Information)
Senior forward Dominique Elliott and the Maryland-Eastern Shore Hawks took a step backwards after their breakout campaign in 2014-15. (Source: UMES Sports Information)

The success for the Maryland-Eastern Shore Hawks during the 2014-15 season was well-documented. Their 18-wins were more than they had in the previous three years combined, and they were invited to the 2015 CollegeInsider.com Tournament.

Their success led to an increase in optimism heading into the 2015-16 campaign, which was Bobby Collins‘ second as the head coach of the team. Forward Michael Myers, a CCR Mid-Major All-American following the 2014-15 season, was the only notable player to be gone from the roster. So, the Hawks were flying high in advance of the 2015-16 season.

What goes up, must come down.

Instead of building off of their success, the Hawks fell flat in 2015-16, struggling out of the gate and never being able to recreate the magic from the previous year. The Hawks won just once in their first 11 games, and were never able to dig themselves out of the hole they dug for themselves.

After taking a step backwards this past season, the Hawks must return to the drawing board and get ready for the 2016-17 season. Even with the struggles of this past year, there is still reason to believe the Hawks can contend for a MEAC title in the coming years. Continue reading 2015-16 Year in Review: Back to the Drawing Board for the Maryland-Eastern Shore Hawks

RECAP: Maryland-Eastern Shore Snaps Five-Game Losing Skid with 74-65 Win over Delaware State

On Senior Night in Princess Anne, MD, senior forward Dominique Elliott brought forth his best effort, recording 20 points and 6 rebounds to help Maryland-Eastern Shore snap a five-game slide with a 74-65 win over Delaware State. (Source: USA Today Sports)
On Senior Night in Princess Anne, MD, senior forward Dominique Elliott brought forth his best effort, recording 20 points and 6 rebounds to help Maryland-Eastern Shore snap a five-game slide with a 74-65 win over Delaware State. (Source: USA Today Sports)

On a night where the Maryland-Eastern Shore Hawks honoured their seniors for all of the time and effort that they put into their time with the program, one of their biggest contributors put together a strong performance on both ends of the floor to make sure the Hawks came away with a win.

With fellow senior Devin Martin out of the lineup, it was big man Dominique Elliott who came ready to play on Saturday afternoon.

With the MEAC Tournament just around the corner, the Hawks welcomed the Delaware State Hornets to town as they looked to snap a five-game losing streak. In their first meeting of the season, the Hornets edged the Hawks, 75-71, behind 24 points off the bench from DeAndre Hayward.

The Hawks were looking for some retribution against their conference foes, while a win would do wonders for either team in the log jam that has developed in the MEAC standings.

When all was said and done, the Hawks used a strong first half to propel themselves to the 74-65 victory over the Hornets. Continue reading RECAP: Maryland-Eastern Shore Snaps Five-Game Losing Skid with 74-65 Win over Delaware State

Maryland-Eastern Shore Hawks Look to Keep Up Their Winning Ways when the Hampton Pirates Come to Town

Guard Devin Martin has averaged 14.0 points per game over the Hawks' last three games, all of which were wins, and he will look to lead Maryland-Eastern Shore to a big home win over the conference-leading Hampton Pirates. (Source: Delmarva Now)
Guard Devin Martin has averaged 14.0 points per game over the Hawks’ last three games, all of which were wins, and he will look to lead Maryland-Eastern Shore to a big home win over the conference-leading Hampton Pirates. (Source: Delmarva Now)

Last season, the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference was represented by the Hampton Pirates in the NCAA Tournament, and three teams overall made post-season appearances from the conferences.

One of those three teams just happens to be the Maryland-Eastern Shore Hawks, who took part in the 2015 CollegeInsider.com Tournament.

Saturday marks the first meeting between the two schools in 2015-16, and both teams are currently trending in the right direction in the conference standings. The Pirates are the conference’s top team, while the Hawks have put together a three-game conference winning streak to get back into the thick of things in the title race.

A win would go a long way for both teams as they keep on pushing towards the MEAC tournament and the ultimate prize of reaching the NCAA Tournament. Here’s what you need to know about both teams heading into Saturday’s showdown.
Continue reading Maryland-Eastern Shore Hawks Look to Keep Up Their Winning Ways when the Hampton Pirates Come to Town