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MAC Morning Dump: Dinosaurs and combined spring games

A proposal to boost spring game attendance in the MAC, and a prehistoric discovery

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Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

As a Detroit Lions fan of the long suffering variety (is there any other kind?) a piece of news caught my eye recently. The Lions will hold a joint practice with the Pittsburgh Steelers ahead of their preseason game this fall, an event that struck me as a bit unusual. As it turns out, I was only half right. While joint practices are unusual for the Lions - this will be their first since 2000 - the practice in the NFL is a bit more commonplace, with 16 teams participating in such events in 2015 alone. The thought is that these practices could eventually do away with the NFL preseason, which, what the hell are we waiting for?

College football doesn't have a true preseason that includes live competition, but it does already  have it's version of joint practices in the form of satellite camps, a Harbaugh vs. the NCAA saga that has been well covered throughout the spring. I'd like to take these joint ventures one step further for the MAC and have schools host joint spring games to kick off the college football preseason. At schools like Ohio State and Alabama, the crowds for the spring game rival that of an actual football game. In the MAC, well, the opposite is true. The MAC has plenty of local rivalries that are quite easy to travel to, and a combined spring game between two rivals could be a huge boost to attendance to an otherwise meaningless event. I spent an unhealthy amount of time thinking about a WMU and CMU joint spring game, or an Akron and Kent joint spring practice, and I couldn't come up with a reason to hate it. Of course, these events sound fun, which means the NCAA has probably prohibited it.

In MAC News:

Buffalo women's basketball head coach Felisha Legette-Jack inks five year extension

The Bulls under Legette-Jack have finished above .500 in their previous three seasons, and capped it off with their first ever appearance in the NCAA tournament this past season. It wasn't easy getting there, either. Buffalo had go through the #1 seeded Ohio in the MAC tournament as well as Akron and Central Michigan. The extension keeps the head coach, having just finished her fourth season in charge, at the helm until the 2020 - 2021 basketball season

Lauren Sinacola named Western Michigan women's soccer head coach

Sinacola takes over for Nate Norman, who left the Broncos in April for Liberty University. WMU will be in good hands with Sinacola, as her time as assistant saw two MAC championships as bookends to a runner up finish in 2014. In 2013, WMU upset Marquette, the number two seed, in the first round of the NCAA Women's College Cup - the biggest upset in the history of the tournament.

Paleontologists from Ohio University discover a new species of dinosaur

Okay, so this news isn't as fresh, but it's a NEW DINOSAUR. Machairoceratops cronusi, the new species discovered by a team led by Ohio University graduate student Eric Lund, was a centrosaurine, which is Ross Geller terminology for "has horns." Along with possibly generating new material for additional Jurassic Park movies, the discovery more importantly helps narrow an "eveloutionary information gap that spans nearly 4 million years," according to Lund. I've never been to Utah, but I'm 100% that when I visit I won't be leaving as a discoverer of dinosaurs.

Meet Freddie Bishop, New York Jet

The former Western Michigan linebacker hasn't let going undrafted in 2013 get the best of him. After recording 11 sacks from the linebacker position last season for the CFL's Calgary Stampeders, Bishop found his way onto the roster of the New York Jets. the 6-foot-3, 255 pound Bishop spent a small amount of time with the Detroit Lions following the 2013 draft, but left to play in Canada shortly after. Bishop was named second team all MAC in 2012, where he recorded 63 tackles in 12 games.