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Friday, Aug. 28, 2015: Is it worth it for UB football to recruit in New York?

   Leading off today: Friday's college football story in The Buffalo News started by stating the fairly obvious -- "The University at Buffalo has New York State virtually all to itself when it comes to recruiting Mid-American Conference football talent" -- but the rest of Mark Gaughan's report was chock full of excellent insight.

   Noting that UB has 35 New York kids on its roster while the other 12 teams in the Ohio- and Michigan-heavy conference have a total of 11 from the Empire State, the report dives into the issue of whether it's a good return on investment for the Bulls to recruit heavily in-state.

   Reason No. 1 to focus efforts elsewhere is the well-documented fact that New York does not produce a lot of top-end football talent for reasons that are also well-documented.    On the other hand, there's something to be said for working New York hard rather than settling mostly for leftovers after schools in surrounding states pick their back yards clean. If you include walk-ons, MAC schools alone have 359 players from Ohio -- and those are the table scraps remaining after Big Ten and other power-conference schools scoop up the four- and five-star prospects.

   "I definitely think there's a great opportunity for us in New York," UB coach Lance Leipold told the paper. "Hopefully we do our part in helping high school football develop within this state and with that the players will continue to develop and we'll have more at our disposal."

   Said Bulls recruiting coordinator Rob Ianello: "I'm not sure how many other teams will come into the footprint of New York and New Jersey to recruit. "So I think that's a benefit to us. If we do our due diligence, we can do a good job in our state. We'll compete against UMass and Old Dominion and Temple, schools of that nature, but not as much schools in our league."

   Much of the rest of the story deals with the reasons New York lags behind so many other states in producing players -- short seasons, the lack of spring ball, etc.

    • If you're interested, in checking out where top New York talent has signed in recent years, we have lists of FBS signings stored on

   Speaking of N.Y. grid exports ... The Notre Dame career of defensive end Ishaq Williams is over. Coach Brian Kelly confirmed Friday that Williams has been ruled ineligible for the season by the NCAA, ending his college playing career.

   Williams, signed out of Abraham Lincoln in Brooklyn in 2011, was dismissed from school last fall after being investigated for possible academic dishonesty. He finishes with 45 tackles, one sack and one forced fumble in 35 games in a largely disappointing career after he was highly recruited.

   Matos returns: Deb Matos will remain coach of City Honors' girls volleyball and softball teams, Buffalo Public Schools AD Aubrey Lloyd told The Buffalo News.

   Matos was the subject of a parental complaint filed under the Dignity for All Students Act for the second time in three years, but the school board opted not to act on a resolution recommending Matos step down.

   Lloyd said Matos has been coaching the Centaurs since their opening practice Aug. 18. football site

   Dropping out for 2015: I haven't seen it written up anywhere yet, but the NYSSWA's Steve Grandin passed along a note that Cairo-Durham has had to drop varsity football this fall, leaving seven Section 2 Class C teams looking for games.

   Starting up in 2015: The Clinton school board has signed off on hosting a girls ice hockey program for 22 to 25 girls from several area schools.

   The team, which will play and practice at the Clinton Arena, will be comprised of Utica-area athletes and maybe a handful of players from schools in the Syracuse area.

   "It was never important to me what the team was called or who took the lead," Clinton resident Scott Hughes, one of those behind the grassroots push, told The Observer-Dispatch. "At the end of the day, our goal was to advance girls hockey. That was the goal. It's about advancing girls hockey."

   Donation announced: The Buffalo Bills and the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) have donated $200,000 to the Rochester City School District to help build a synthetic turf football field at the Franklin Campus.

   The LISC works to support athletic fields in urban areas.

   Covered in Ivy: How many schools can boast of seven graduates on Ivy League football rosters this fall? Long Island power St. Anthony's has that many: defensive lineman Pat McHugh at Yale; defensive lineman J.D. Hurt and defensive back Jared Katz at Columbia; defensive back Durelle Napier, linebacker Joe Percival and offensive lineman Steve Fletcher at Princeton; and offensive lineman Tommy Dennis at Penn.

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