Al Willman


Recent articles


EMU hires deputy athletic director

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The Eastern Michigan University Athletic Department announced Monday the hiring of Christian Spears as the Deputy Director of Athletics.

EMU football team lands highly touted transfer

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After reports surfaced earlier this week, the Eastern Michigan University athletic department officially announced the transfer of Rob Bolden from Louisiana State University late Friday afternoon. He will be eligible for the 2014 season.

Van Ameyde named baseball coach

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Eastern Michigan University named Mark Van Ameyde its baseball coach Tuesday. Van Ameyde is switching one green and white jersey for another, as he spent the last six years as the assistant coach for former EMU assistant Jake Boss at Michigan State University.

Former EMU Baseball coach Ron Oestrike dies at the age of 82

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Former Eastern Michigan University baseball coach Ron Oestrike died early Friday afternoon. He was 82.

COLUMN: Putting The Factory in perspective

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Thursday’s announcement by Heather Lyke, Eastern Michigan University Vice President and Director of Athletics and football coach Chris Creighton of the installation of grey turf at Rynearson Stadium (henceforth called “The Factory”) has already sparked a great deal of discussion on social media – most of it negative.

New gymnastics coach hired

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Eastern Michigan University announced Tuesday the hiring of Jay Santos as gymnastics coach, replacing Steve Wilce who retired in April.

Former EMU pitcher, AL Cy Young winner dies

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Former Eastern Michigan University pitcher Bob Welch has died at the age of 57 according to Major League Baseball.

Board of Regents briefs for June 10

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Board of Regents briefs for June 10 Board of Regents approves FY2015 Budget The Eastern Michigan University Board of Regents approved Tuesday a $301.9 million general fund operating expenditure budget.

Women's basketball guard to transfer

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The Eastern Michigan University women’s basketball team is losing one of its players – guard Haley Moore tweeted Monday night that she is transferring to Wayne State College in Nebraska.

3 Eagles named to All-MAC preseason teams Monday

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Eastern Michigan University hired Chris Creighton to be its new football coach in December and the fruits of his labors are already beginning to show with Monday’s announcement of three players to Mid-American Conference preseason teams by MAC blogger Phil Steele.

Former EMU defensive end signs contract with Detroit Lions

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Former Eastern Michigan University football standout Kalonji Kashama was signed Monday by the Detroit Lions of the National Football League, after participating in a rookie mini-camp earlier in the spring.

Holdren not retained as rowing coach

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Eastern Michigan University announced Tuesday that rowing coach Brad Holdren would not be returning for the 2014-15 season.

Baseball coach not renewed for seventh season

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The Eastern Michigan University athletic department announced Wednesday that baseball coach Jay Alexander would not be renewed for a seventh season.

Backup infielder is worth more to the Tigers as a pitcher

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Detroit Tigers backup shortstop Danny Worth pitched the ninth inning in two different blowout losses this week and manager Brad Ausmus, as well as the team’s front office might now have a decision to make about the infielder’s future.

One rough week for the Tigers isn't the end of the world

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The Detroit Tigers are having a bad week, but I wouldn’t push the panic button just yet – first year manager Brad Ausmus is doing just fine.

Managing Editor, host of Eastern Echo Sports Podcast, names 2013-14 Eagles of the Year

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The school year is quickly winding down and with it ends an eventful year for Eastern Michigan University’s athletic teams. As part of my weekly appearances on E-TV’s Eagles Sports Update, I share my “Eagle of the Week” – a player or coach who stands out to me for their performances in the week leading up to the show. For this, the final issue of the school year (not counting the summer semester), I have compiled a list of my Eagles of the Year for all of EMU’s sports, as well as for some specialized categories.

My.Emich to undergo changes, including a digital facelift

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Many Eastern Michigan University students, faculty and instructors have made the switch to Google Apps for Education for their campus email. Now, another major online change is on the way.

The time has come to pay it forward

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Pay-it-Forward is an idea, which was popularized in 2000, following a movie of the same title – which I will assume, for the purposes of this column – you have already seen. If not, you can read the summary on IMDB

UPDATE: Alleged robbery victim recants statement

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The female victim of Thursday’s alleged unarmed robbery recanted her statement, according to an email update sent by Eastern Michigan University’s Department of Public Safety early Friday morning. The student originally reported having been struck from behind in the Rynearson Parking Lot on Hewitt Road, causing her to briefly lose consciousness.

After nearly six months, Jimmy John's on Cross opens for business

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After six months and much frustration, the long wait for Eastern Michigan University students ended at 11 a.m. Wednesday when the Jimmy John’s at 537 W. Cross Street re-opened.

Recent posts


Forum postponed

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Due to a scheduling error, Monday’s Eastern Echo forum on Football and Athletics has been postponed. We will be rescheduling the event. We apologize for any inconvenience and will keep you updated on the new date as soon as we have that information.

Former Eagle signed by Green Bay Packers

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Former Eastern Michigan University quarterback, turned wide receiver, Alex Gillett was signed Wednesday by the Green Bay Packers of the NFL. He was added to the team’s practice squad when quarterback Scott Tolzien, formerly of the University of Wisconsin, was activated.

The Eastern Echo Sports Podcast: Sunday Edition

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The Eastern Echo Sports Podcast: Sunday Edition Follow Al Willman on Twitter: @AlWillmanEcho
Follow Eugene Evans on Twitter: @EasternEchoGeno
Follow The Eastern Echo on Twitter: @TheEasternEcho
Follow the Eastern Echo Sports Podcast on Twitter: @ESportsPodcast

The school year is beginning

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Well, that day is upon us. The day many I’m sure many of you have been dreading for the last three months (I’m sure quite a few of you have been looking forward to the beginning of this school year- I know I have). Whether you’re a new student or a seasoned veteran of the classroom, I have some often shared, but under-utilized advice for you on the eve of another school year.

New school year, new blog

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This is the home of the new Managing Editor’s blog. It will contain a little bit of everything: News, Opinions, Sports, Life, but no Comics (you’ll thank me later). For more, feel free to follow me on Twitter: @AlWillmanEcho

Former Eagle football player signed to Detroit Lions

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On Wednesday, the Detroit Lions announced the signing of former Eagle defensive tackle Jason Jones. In four seasons as an Eagle, he registered 175 total tackles, 13 sacks and one forced fumble. Jones began the 2004 season as a tight end before making the switch to the defensive line.

EMU Men's Basketball Postgame Press Conference 3/9/13

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EMU Men’s Basketball Postgame Press Conference 3/9/13

Breaking news: EMU vs. Ohio game cancelled

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The basketball game scheduled Wednesday evening between Eastern Michigan University and Ohio University has been cancelled. Early Wednesday morning, an armed robbery took place near Ohio’s campus which prompted the university to close for the day.

James Still sentenced to 15 years in prison

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This just in: Former Eagle forward James Still was sentenced Tuesday to 15 years in prison for his involvement in an assault on a Providence College student in 2010.

Head coach accountable for team's performance

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I’ve been getting a lot of feedback, both positive and negative, about the Dec. 3 column I wrote about Eastern Michigan University’s head football coach Ron English, and I’d like to clear the air on a few matters.

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