December 18, 2008
By David Driver
For the Stafford County Sun
Used with permission
Kevin Ives and Bruce Crawford both played football at North Stafford High School for coach Tap Pace.
Both were with teams in Maryland at the college level this past fall.
And now both of those schools will have new coaches in 2009, while Crawford plans to transfer.
Ives was a redshirt defensive back this past season for Towson University, a Division I-AA team in the Colonial Athletic Association located just north of Baltimore.
Ives, a 2007 North Stafford graduate, enrolled at Towson last spring after one semester at the Naval Prep School in Rhode Island.
Among the CAA teams Towson lost to this season was James Madison, 58-27 on Nov. 22 in Maryland. JMU hosted Montana on Dec. 12 in the semifinals of the I-AA national playoffs in Harrisonburg.
The Tigers of Towson were 3-9 in 2008 and recently fired long-time head coach Gordy Combs, even though the 1972 Towson graduate was given a contract extension late in the 2007 season. Towson lost its last five games by a combined 92 points.
Ives said players on the team were told of the transition by Towson assistant coaches.
“It will be more of a positive for me,” said=2 0Ives, who hopes for a shot at playing time with the Tigers in 2009. “I think with the new coach it gives everyone a clean slate. I am looking at it for the best.”
Crawford, a 2008 North Stafford grad, was a reserve freshman quarterback this past season for Division II Bowie State University in Prince George’s County, Md.
On Dec. 5 the school announced that head coach Mike Lynn would not return for the 2009 season. Lynn was 26-25 in five seasons and tied for the most wins as a coach in school history.
“There was some tension” between Lynn and the BSU athletic director Derek Carter, Crawford said. The Bulldogs were 6-3 on the field this past season but had to forfeit one of those wins since they used an ineligible player in one of the games, according to several team members.
Crawford said he had decided prior to Dec. 5 that he would transfer to Division III Christopher Newport in January for the spring semester. “I will be on the team and compete for playing time” at Christopher Newport, Crawford said.
Crawford was recruited by Christopher Newport, along with William and Mary, out of high school but decided to give Bowie State a try. Crawford, the son of Dianne and Bruce Crawford, made the honor roll on several occasions at North Stafford and he hopes to be an engineer. He plans to continue to major in computer science when he transfers to Christopher Newport in mid-Januar y.
Crawford, who also played basketball at North Stafford, knew it would be tough to crack the starting lineup at Bowie State. “The starter (at quarterback) was a senior. There was another freshman quarterback on the team. We didn’t expect to play,” Crawford said.
He will be reunited at Christopher Newport with former high school teammate Dayn Washburn, a freshman linebacker in 2008 for the Captains.
Ives, 20, was recruited by Navy for soccer but ended up at the prep school in Newport, Rhode Island. His father, James, graduated from West Point and Kevin has several friends who are from military families.
But after a semester at the prep school Ives decided that was not the place for him.
“I wasn’t too happy up there,” Ives said.
He spoke with a friend who attended Towson and Ives was able to talk with the team’s recruiting coordinator. Ives played for the Tigers during spring workouts earlier this year.
Ives, a Special Olympics volunteer in the past, was a preferred walk-on in 2008 and dressed for games against Villanova and James Madison. Ives said he weighed about 150 points in high school and he is now up around 200. “I have been able to maintain my speed,” he said.
Ives was an all-district player at wide receiver at North Stafford and he caught 35 passes as a senior. He also ran 46 times for 430 yards and was a two-time all-di strict and all-region player for the Wolverines.