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Former SSU Coaches On The Move

A pair of former Savannah State University football coaches have new jobs for the 2021 football season.

Saeed Khalif has been hired as the new director of player personnel at Michigan State University while Lyle Leong Jr. is the new head football coach and athletic director at Levelland High School in Texas.

Khalif spent the last four seasons as the director of player personnel at the University of Wisconsin. He was an All-Atlantic Coast Conference defensive lineman at Georgia Tech from 1984-86. He worked as a defensive coordinator at high schools in Georgia (Southside Youth Academic Athletic Association in Atlanta, Redan High in Stone Mountain and Decatur High in Decatur) and was the head coach at Central High School in Newark, New Jersey. Khalif moved on to college and served as the defensive coordinator and defensive line coach at Savannah State from 2011- 12, then spent four seasons as the assistant director of player personnel at Georgia Tech before joining Wisconsin in 2017.

Saeed Khalif
Saeed Khalif

Leong has spent the last four years as the co-offensive coordinator at Highlands High School in San Antonio. The former Texas Tech wide receiver also has coached at Cisco College (2013), West Virginia (2014) and Savannah State (2016). He left SSU so he could spend more time with his wife and family and landed his first high school job at Cleburne in 2017.

SSU To Host Women’s Basketball Camp

Savannah State University head women’s basketball coach Cedric Baker and his staff will host a summer camp for middle school and high school players June 28- July 2 on the SSU campus.

The Lady Tigers’ Summer Basketball Camp will be held in Tiger Arena from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. June 28 – July 2 with two portions. There will be an individual camp for girls age 6 to 17 and an elite camp for rising 9th – 12th grade girls.

The camp will include individual instruction, skill development, competitive drills, contests, prizes and awards, guest speakers, and lunch. Lady Tiger athletes will act as camp counselors. Each camper will receive a t-shirt and certificate.

Lyle Leong Jr.
Lyle Leong Jr.

A native of Columbus, Georgia, Baker has over 300-career wins as a head coach in his nearly 30 years as being a head coach on the collegiate level.

COVID-19 safety procedures will be in place for the camp. Instructions and information will be sent out to campers who register.

Visit abcsportscamps.com/ tigerbasketball to register for the camp.

Contact Coach Baker at 912-358-3437 for additional information.

SIAC, ESPN Agree To Multi- Year Media Rights Extension

The Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SIAC) and ESPN announced on June 17, 2021 that they have reached a multi-year rights agreement that will feature SIAC football and basketball games through 2027.

Beginning in the fall of 2021, ESPN will feature at least 22 football games across ESPNU and ESPN+, including the SIAC Football Championship.

Cedric Baker
Cedric Baker

In addition, ESPN will have the exclusive rights to all men’s and women’s basketball championship preliminary rounds on ESPN+, and the SIAC men’s and women’s basketball championship games on ESPN networks.

SIAC commissioner Gregory Moore remarked: “We are very proud to both continue and broaden our media relationship with ESPN to provide the SIAC with the best and most meaningful opportunity to showcase our member institutions and student-athletes on both ESPN networks and streaming platforms. We also appreciate ESPN’s commitment to our league, which will enable us to generate exciting live game content and produce compelling complementary programming for our fans.”

“We are extremely excited about this new relationship with ESPN,” said Dr. Paul Jones of Fort Valley State & Chair of Presidents’ Council. “This landmark Division II agreement will provide tremendous exposure for our student athletes, while showcasing an exciting brand of athletics in The Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.”

Collegiate Sports Management Group Chief Operating Officer Ray Katz, who led the CSMG team that advised the SIAC, stated: “We are privileged to represent the SIAC and support these superb institutions. By working with ESPN – the industry leader in sports television and streaming – the SIAC can showcase competitive games and talented student-athletes while securing crucial exposure for the conference and its constituents.”

“We are delighted to expand ESPN’s relationship with the SIAC for the next several years,” said Dan Margulis, ESPN senior director, programming and acquisitions. “One of the top NCAA Division II conferences in the country, we look forward to being the home for many of the SIAC’s biggest football and basketball matchups as we further spotlight their talented student-athletes and member institutions and continue our commitment to supporting HBCU athletics.”

ESPN is already set to showcase the SIAC during Week 1 of the 2021 college football season with the inaugural Red Tails Classic, a college football event launched by ESPN Events to showcase Historically Black College and Universities. The inaugural game will feature Tuskegee University and Fort Valley State University on Sunday, Sept. 5, at 7 p.m. ET, on ESPNU.

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