Coach ‘til the end
Deerfield Academy teacher/track coach Jen Marino, who once held the Methuen High triple jump record, was deeply saddened by the death of her high school coach Bill Blood.
She wrote, “Bill has had a tremendous impact on my life. He was a great technical coach. I learned the value of practice and technique through him, and this benefited me immensely as an athlete and now as a coach. I always appreciated his sarcastic and blunt sense of humor. It would always put a smile on my face when he would randomly show up to my college track meets.
“After college, I had the opportunity to work with him as an assistant coach at (Phillips) Andover. His sense of humor and rapport with his athletes had not changed. He also always was quick to offer me advice, as it was my first year as a coach. Even as an opposing coach, he would continue to offer me advice and guidance.”
Freshman guard Colby Smith of North Andover (23 minutes, 4 rebounds) and junior forward Connor Arnold of Andover (17 minutes, 4 rebounds, 2 points) played key roles as Brandeis knocked off 13th-ranked Washington University in St. Louis.
North Andover girls basketball star Morgan Lumb (sprained ankle) is hoping to be back in 10 days to two weeks. ... Mike Dawson just went from North Middlesex (Mass.) High athletic director to NFL coach. Former UNH and Oregon coach Chip Kelly hired him as the defensive quality control coach with the Philadelphia Eagles.
Alabama-bound quarterback Luke Del Rio has quite the mentor. His father, Jack Del Rio, is the Denver Broncos’ defensive coordinator. QB Peyton Manning befriended Luke, who then attended practices and meetings and threw to Bronco receivers.
Cakes are baking
UTL birthday wishes go out to Stony Brook basketball redshirt freshman Scott King of Derry (21 today), Eagle-Tribune Female Athlete of the Year Krissy Whitley of North Andover (turns 22 Tuesday), BC hockey recruit J.D. Dudek of Derry (turns 17 Tuesday) and ex-Bruin Steve Heinze of North Andover (turns 43) Wednesday.
Big shoes to fill
Whoever replaces Alabama’s D.J. Fluker will have big shoes to fill, in every sense of the expression. The 6-6, 335-pound All-American wears a size 22 shoe.
On the mark
That’s former Pinkerton Academy sprinter Mark Daniels (PA ‘03) who is the fine young Patriots/MMA writer for the Boston Herald.
Follow Michael Muldoon on Twitter under the screen name @MullyET.