Saturday Morning Quarterback

Lebanon RB offered by West Point
Apr 26, 2014

Time for some spring cleaning of my “notebook” of items I haven’t had room or time to run. This is not the half dozen or so photos which are sitting on my desktop. I’ll get those in when I have room.

The most interesting item is Lebanon running back Taye Davis has been offered by West Point.

According to Scout.com, the 6-foot-2, 239-pound rising senior was offered by new Cadet coach Jeff Monken.

Davis rushed for over 1,000 yards as the most effective offensive weapon for the 2-8 Blue Devils. I suspect over half of the yardage came after contact as, though he had a good line, he was his own best blocker as defenders often bounced off him.

“It was a big surprise,” Davis told ArmySports.com. “I called the head coach and he said they really liked my game, my explosiveness running the ball.”

Davis said he will try to schedule a trip to the upstate New York campus this summer.

“I was very excited to receive the offer,” said Davis, whose only other offer to date is from Austin Peay. Arkansas, Cincinnati, Louisville, Chattanooga, Florida, Ole Miss, Mississippi State, Tennessee, Vanderbilt and Western Kentucky are listed by different recruiting websites as being in the mix.

Davis said Vanderbilt, Tennessee, Arkansas, Western Kentucky and Mississippi State have also expressed interest.

In other recruiting news, though this is a bit dated now, Friendship Christian lineman Andrew Wood has been offered by Duke, Navy, Syracuse [where former Commander quarterback A.J. Long has been through spring practice], Virginia, Mississippi State and Memphis and felt at the time Ole Miss could be close to offering. Vanderbilt’s status is unclear as some sources say the Commodores have offered and others only that they are in the mix. Different sources say Auburn and California are in the mix as well.

Though Wood plays tackle for the Commanders, he’s being recruited primarily as a guard, according to Barton Simmons of 247sports.com. He told Simmons academics will be a strong selling point for coaches, noting he wants to study engineering.

On the baseball front, Lebanon resident Jeff Bennett is pitching professionally in Mexico for the second straight year.

The Gordonsville-graduate and former Atlanta Brave, Milwaukee Brewer and Tampa Bay Ray pitched a 6-0 shutout victory with four hits and two walks allowed and six strikeouts for Broncos de Reynosa against Saraperos Saltillo a couple of weeks ago.

Former Friendship Christian pitcher Stephen Pryor bounced back from a couple of disastrous outings for Jackson [Tenn.] in the Southern League at Chattanooga [near his current offseason home in Ooltewah] to finish strong before continuing his rehab at Triple-A Tacoma.

The parent Seattle Mariners activated him from the disabled list, where he had been since injuring his shoulder just over a year ago, and optioned him to the Rainiers, who play just down I-5 from Seattle.

Incidentally, former Cumberland catcher Luis Martinez is also in the Pacific Coast League as a backup catcher for Salt Lake, the Angels’ Triple-A affiliate. He saw action against Tacoma last week, but didn’t face Pryor. The two did face off two years ago in the PCL.

As expected, former Mt. Juliet and Vanderbilt teammates Taylor Hill and Caleb Cotham are again pitching for rival teams in the International League.

Hill is back with the Syracuse Chiefs in the Washington Nationals’ system while Cotham is toiling for the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Railriders in the Yankees’ chain.

They haven’t pitched against each other yet, though they did come close as they started opposite games of a doubleheader last week.

Hill moved to 3-0 with a 1.80 earned-run average after pitching seven innings in a 5-2 win at Louisville on Thursday.

Also baseball-related, Middle Tennessee State beat Austin Peay 12-7 Wednesday night. I only mention this because the two coaches, MTSU’s Jim McGuire and Peay’s Gary McClure, were Cumberland infielders together in 1985.

The pair have seen plenty of each other in the years since since both have been at their respective schools [who were longtime Ohio Valley Conference rivals until a little over a decade ago and continue to play each other regularly] for more than 20 years – McClure as the Governors’ head coach and McGuire as an assistant under Steve Peterson until being promoted  following Peterson’s retirement a couple of years ago.

Hope that cleaned my desk off a little. Now, about that computer desktop…

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