The San Franciso 49ers signed punter Colton Schmidt, a Liberty graduate, to a free-agent contract with an invitation to training camp.
"It's pretty surreal," Schmidt said Wednesday. "It's something you dream about as a kid, saying you're going to be a professional this or that, and years and years of playing and practicing go into it. It still hasn't hit me yet."
Schmidt, who was undrafted out of UC Davis, likely will see plenty of action for the 49ers during training camp, which begins July 19 in Santa Clara, and in the preseason as 49ers All-Pro punter Andy Lee rests.
"That's kind of the standard way it works being a kicker," Schmidt said. "The short-term goal for me, OK, I got into camp, which is good; now I need to go into preseason games and perform really well. It's an audition for the team you're with and for the 31 other teams. It could be my whole season."
Schmidt, who kicked extra points and field goals at Liberty, focused on punting and kickoff duties at UC Davis, and that's what he'll do professionally.
"That's the way I'm marketing myself: Punting and kickoffs," Schmidt said. "That's the mindset I'm going in with, and they have one of the best punters there. I'll try to absorb and learn as much from him as possible."
BC appeals to CCCAA
Bakersfield College has taken the next step in appealing sanctions imposed on its football team by the Southern California Football Association.
On Tuesday, the college put in a formal appeal to the California Community College Athletics Association in response to a denial of an earlier appeal to the SCFA. In a ruling announced May 14 after BC self-reported alleged infractions, the SCFA said BC must forfeit all regular-season wins from the 2011 and 2012 seasons, BC is ineligible for the postseason in 2013 and is on probation for the 2013 and 2014 seasons.
BC appealed those sanctions to the SCFA, which denied the appeal in late June. "I believe the penalties are overly broad and excessive for technical infractions that did not put our student athletes at a competitive advantage," said Dr. Sonya Christian, president of Bakersfield College in a release. "The facts presented in the appeals document provide clarity on the actual nature of the infractions, and should lead to more appropriate sanctions on Bakersfield College."
The appeal to the CCCAA is a re-presentation of the arguments presented in the earlier appeal to the Southern California Football Association (SCFA), the school said. However, in addition to the previously-submitted materials, Bakersfield College contends that the procedure used by SCFA in denying Bakersfield College's appeal lacked transparency and fairness, and violated fundamental due process.
Haney running 1,500 only at Youth Worlds
Stockdale rising senior Blake Haney will run only the 1,500 meters at the IAAF World Youth Championships this week in Ukraine. Haney qualified in both the 1,500 and 3,000, but IAAF rules prohibit competitors from running in more than one event longer than 400 meters.
The 1,500 preliminaries were early this morning.
BCHS' McGiffney qualifies for nationals
Kelly McGiffney won the javelin title with a throw of 128 feet, 1 inch at the USATF Region 14 Junior Olympics meet Saturday at Cal State Bakersfield. That qualifies McGiffney for the USATF National Junior Olympics from July 22-28 in Greensboro, N.C., in the Girls 17-18 Division.