UNLV MEN’S GOLF NEWS: No. 25 Rebels Win Stroke-Play Portion Of Carmel Cup, To Play For Championship Sunday




Rebels will face Vanderbilt in match play for tournament title on Sunday at Pebble Beach

The No. 25 UNLV men’s golf team shot an opening round 3-over-par 363 and followed that up with an afternoon score of 5-over 365 to win the stroke-play portion of the Carmel Cup on Saturday.

Arizona, Texas Tech and Vanderbilt, who are all receiving votes in the Golf World/NIKE Golf Coaches Poll, are the other three teams competing in the event this weekend.

UNLV’s two-round total of 8-over 728, was two shots better than Vanderbilt’s 730. Texas Tech was third at 750, followed by Arizona at 763. Six players played for each team with the low five scores of each round counting toward the team total.

The morning round was played at Pebble Beach Golf Links (par 72, 7,040 yards), while the afternoon session was held at Spyglass Hill Golf Course (par 72, 6,960 yards).

The Rebels will now face Vanderbilt in match play on Sunday at Pebble Beach Golf Links for the tournament championship, while Texas Tech and Arizona will face off for third place. Play is scheduled to begin at 7:10 a.m. PT.

Vanderbilt’s Matthias Schwab led all individuals in stroke play at 3-under 141 (73-68). UNLV sophomore Zane Thomas was second at even-par 144 (74-70), while there was a five-way tie for third at 1-over 145 that included three Rebels – junior Kurt Kitayama (73-72), sophomore AJ McInerney (73-72) and freshman Taylor Montgomery (71-74).

Rebel junior Carl Jonson (72-77) was 11th at 5-over 149 and freshman Chris Tuulik (74-78) was 16th at 8-over 152.

There is no live online scoring from this weekend’s Carmel Cup, however a full recap of the action may be found on UNLVRebels.com following Sunday’s round.

Saturday’s Carmel Cup Results

Pairings for Sunday’s championship

7:40 a.m. – Hunter Stewart vs. Jonson; Charlie Ewing vs. Thomas
7:50 a.m. – John Voetsch vs. McInerney; Ben Fogler vs. Montogomery
8:00 a.m. – Matthias Schwab vs. Tuulik; Zach Herr vs. Kitayama

UNLV ATHLETICS NEWS: Jim Livengood Retiring As Athletics Director




 UNLV President Neal Smatresk today announced the retirement of UNLV Athletics Director Jim Livengood, effective June 30.

“It is with deep regret that I announce Jim Livengood is retiring,” Smatresk said. “Jim has been a wonderful athletics director. He has dramatically increased private support and helped restore UNLV Athletics as a national brand. UNLV and Rebel fans will miss him. I wish him luck and an enjoyable retirement with his family, friends, and grandchildren.”

The retirement concludes a run of 28 consecutive years as an athletics director for Livengood at four different institutions — UNLV, Arizona, Washington State, and Southern Illinois. He is a past chair of the NCAA Division-I Men’s Basketball Selection Committee and was named the 2006 Division I-A Athletic Director of the Year by the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics.

“With the academic year coming to an end, it’s the time of year in this profession when you need to make these types of decisions about either going forward full-speed or making a change,” said Livengood, 68. “This has been something I have been contemplating for the past year. It’s time I step aside and allow someone else to take the lead with the Rebels and keep moving forward. I’ve enjoyed my time in Las Vegas and I care deeply about UNLV, but it’s the time in my life where my focus needs to be on my wife, kids, and grandkids. I’ve been blessed to be an athletics director for nearly three decades. You can’t ask for much more than that in a career. And I’m proud to end my AD career as a Rebel.”

Livengood was named UNLV’s director of athletics Dec. 17, 2009. During his tenure, Livengood led the construction of the Mendenhall Center, the state-of-the-art basketball practice facility that opened in January 2012. Livengood also selected Dave Rice as head coach of the Runnin’ Rebels men’s basketball team in 2011. In his first two seasons, Rice led the team to a total of 51 wins (a program record for a coach after two seasons) and two NCAA Tournaments as well as saw the largest crowds fill the Thomas & Mack Center for UNLV basketball games since 1991. Livengood also oversaw the hiring of new coaches in football, baseball, softball, men’s and women’s soccer, women’s golf, women’s volleyball, and cross country.

During his three and a half years at UNLV, Livengood also will be remembered for playing a crucial role protecting and growing the Mountain West Conference.

“Jim Livengood’s contributions to intercollegiate athletics and most recently the Mountain West will be remembered forever,” said Mountain West commissioner Craig Thompson. “During his tenure at UNLV, no conversation ended or a decision was made until we heard his opinion. He is a tremendous voice and friend in all aspects.”

Under Livengood’s leadership, UNLV student-athlete graduation rates have improved. As of fall 2012, 12 teams achieved a cumulative team GPA of 3.0 or higher and in the past year the Mountain West Conference recognized 126 Rebels for academic achievement.

Livengood also was an effective fundraiser and made increasing UNLV’s exposure locally and nationally a priority. Under his leadership, Rebel Athletics tripled its private fundraising revenue.

Prior to his UNLV post, Livengood was director of athletics at the University of Arizona for 16 years. He was also director of athletics at Washington State University (1987- 93), director of athletics at Southern Illinois University (1985-87), associate director of athletics, development and public relations at Washington State University (1980-85), and held several high school coaching positions (1969-1980).

Livengood and his wife, Linda, have two grown children and four grandchildren.

UNLV MEN’S GOLF NEWS: Rebels To Play In Tucson This Weekend



National Invitational Tournament will be held
Saturday-Sunday, March 16-17

The UNLV men’s golf team will travel to Tucson, Ariz., for the Don Puckette National Invitational Tournament, which will be played at Omni Tucson National Golf Club (par 72, 7,094 yards) on Saturday-Sunday, March 16-17.

The 16-school, 54-hole tournament will consist of 36 holes played on Saturday and a final round of 18 holes taking place on Sunday. This year’s field is made up of Arizona, Arkansas, Hawaii, Long Beach State, Nevada, Reno, New Mexico, New Mexico State, Oklahoma State, San Diego, San Diego State, SMU, TCU, Texas A&M, UNLV, UTEP and Wyoming. Play will begin at 8 a.m. MT each day.

The Rebels’ lineup includes senior Kevin Penner, junior Blake Biddle, freshman AJ McInerney, and sophomores Kurt Kitayama and Carl Jonson.

UNLV finished second (out of 12 teams) at last year’s NIT at 4-under 860, one shot back of team champion San Diego State. Penner turned in the Rebels’ best individual performance at 2-under, which tied for third place, 13 shots behind individual medalist J.J. Spaun from San Diego State.

In its last tournament, UNLV finished ninth at its own Southern Highlands Collegiate Masters, which had a 15-team field including nine of the nation’s top-10 ranked teams. In seven events this season, UNLV has finished in the top four on four occasions.

Live scoring of the NIT will be available on the internet courtesy of Golfstat through a link at UNLVRebels.com.

UNLV MEN’S SWIMMING AND DIVING NEWS: Rebels Rejoin National Rankings At No. 25



Rebels make second appearance this year in the rankings

The UNLV men’s swimming and diving team has returned to the national rankings at No. 25 thanks to an eight-meet win streak to end the regular season, as the latest College Swimming Coaches Association of America (CSCAA) Division 1 Team Rankings were released on Wednesday morning. Previously the Rebels were ranked 23rd in the Dec. 5 poll, before dropping out for two weeks.

UNLV finished the regular season at 8-1, with the lone loss coming in the season-opener to Arizona, currently ranked in a tie for ninth in the poll. The eight-win streak to end the season includes wins over Mountain Pacific Sports Federation members Air Force, BYU, CSU Bakersfield, Denver, and most recently Wyoming, who had entered the Feb. 2 meet undefeated at 8-0 before falling by 25 points to the Rebels.

The Rebels have three swimmers that rank in the top 16 in the nation in their events. Cody Roberts currently holds the nation’s fourth fastest time in the 100 fly in a time of 46.76. Giacomo Gremizzi is ranked sixth in the 400 IM with a time of 3:45.58, while David Szele is 12th in the 100 breast (53.37). UNLV is also ranked in the top 16 in three relays as well, seventh in the 400 medley (3:11.43), eighth in the 200 medley (1:26.84), while the 800 free relay (6:29.43) has the 11th fastest time in the nation thus far this season.

The Rebels will return to action in the MPSF Championship meet, held Feb. 20-23 at East LA College in Monterey Park, Calif.

Grimaldis Pizzeria Announces E-Gift Cards

Grimaldi’s Pizzeria Announces E-Gift Cards
Give the Gift of Delicious Pizza Instantly

Grimaldi’s Pizzeria, famous for its award-winning pizzas and calzones, is now offering e-gift cards. You can now give the gift of delicious pizza instantly with one click of your mouse. E-gift cards can be purchased in values ranging from $5 to $500.

E-gift cards can be ordered online 24/7 at www.grimaldispizzeria.com/giftcard and are gifted instantly via email. You can also customize your gift with a personalized image and message. Physical gift cards from Grimaldi’s Pizzeria are still available and can be purchased in store or online. E-gift cards and physical gift cards are accepted at participating Grimaldi’s Pizzeria restaurants in Nevada, Arizona, Florida and Texas.

About Grimaldi’s Pizzeria:
In the world of pizza, Grimaldi’s is an institution that has garnered more awards than any other pizzeria in the country with more celebrity sightings than most 5-star restaurants. Using only the freshest ingredients, a “secret recipe” pizza sauce, handmade mozzarella cheese and dough, Grimaldi’s serves traditional pizza (as it began in Naples, Italy) in an upscale yet casual, family oriented pizzeria. The intense heat of the oven evenly bakes the pies to create Grimaldi’s famous crispy and smoky thin crust that Zagat has voted best pizza year after year.

For more information on Grimaldi’s Pizzeria visit www.grimaldispizzeria.com

“Like” Grimaldi’s Pizzeria on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/GrimaldisPizzeria

Follow Grimaldi’s Pizzeria on Twitter: www.twitter.com/grimaldispizza

Interview: The Mark A. Baker Mortgage Team Launches Home Affordable Refinance Program Website To Educate Nevada Homeowners

The Mark A. Baker Mortgage Team Launches
Home Affordable Refinance Program Website To Educate Nevada Homeowners



I had the pleasure to sit down and talk to Mark Baker of The Mark Baker Team about the HARP program.

The HARP program is the Home Affordable Refinance Program.
The first one that came out Mark told me that you can refinance up to 125% of the value. Which did not help very many people? This is a newly updated federal program known as Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP 2.0). First established in 2009, the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) was designed to assist homeowners in refinancing their Fannie Mae (FNM) and Freddie Mac (FRE) mortgages, even if the homeowners owe more than the home’s current value.

This is the second round of HARP. Much different than the first one.
For homeowners in the Sand States the first HARP program did not benefit them much because most are 100% upside down on their mortgages. The sand states include Nevada, Florida, California and Arizona.

Mark specializes in helping Nevada homeowners. Nevada Homeowners with a Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac loan can apply for HARP 2.0 regardless if they’re “upside down” on their mortgages. “Upside down” means that you owe more than what your house is worth.

The HARP 2.0 program is for homeowners that are not late on their mortgage payments, have fixed rate mortgages, closed before June 2009 and have a Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac loan.

Many homeowners are unsure if they may have a Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac loan. Bank of America and Wells Fargo loans are a loan- servicing providers. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are the government sponsor enterprises. Mark also mentioned there are actually hundreds of service providers and may people do not know all the details of their loans. So you may have a Fannie May or Freddie Mac loan!

With HARP 2.0, people can roll any closing cost, prepaid taxes and insurance into the loan. You’re going to skip a payment and get an impounds refund back. (I’m not sure this is necessary)

Mark demonstrated how quick and simple it is for him to look up any loan. For example, I am a homeowner and I wasn’t sure if my loan was Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae. He looked it up and by my surprise my original loan was started from Fanny Mae. Therefore, I would qualify for the HARP 2.0 program and refinance my mortgage. If I was to refinance today I could do a 10- year loan and 3.625 with no points! (Note that the interest rate changes daily)

The HARP 2.0 program starts on March 15 14th and goes to the end of 2013. Mark is accepting applications now and you may want to get in before the interest rates go up!
Please go to www.NevadaHARP.com . It is a very simple form to see if you qualify!


If you are “upside-down” on your home and would like the opportunity to refinance to a lower rate, Mortgage Expert Mark Baker can help you navigate through the refinancing process. With more than 12 years experience in the mortgage industry and ranked as #1 Loan Originator in Nevada by Broker Magazine, Baker and his team guide homeowners through the process of refinancing their home through the Home Affordable Refinance Program or HARP program. Baker outlines important HARP information below.

About HARP – Home Affordable Refinance Program
Established in 2009, the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) is designed to assist homeowners in refinancing their mortgages – even if the homeowners owe more than the home’s current value.

The primary expectations of the HARP program are to:
· Reduce the homeowner’s monthly principal and interest payments.
· Reduce their interest rate and reduce the amortization period.
· Move homeowners from a more risky loan structure (such as an interest-only mortgage or a short-term Adjustable Rate Mortgage) to a more stable structure (such as a fixed-rate mortgage).

The Federal Housing Finance Agency’s (FHFA) changes to the HARP program are significant. To qualify for the HARP 2.0 program, the following apply.

· The current loan MUST be a Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac loan to participate in the HARP program. No other loans qualify for this program. (FHA loans & VA loans do not qualify)
· The homeowner must be able to afford the new lower payment.
· There is NO maximum Loan-to-Value (LTV) if a homeowner currently has a “fixed interest rate” with a 30 year or less term.
· There is a 105% maximum Loan-to-Value (LTV) if your current loan is an Adjustable Rate Mortgage (ARM).
· The loan MUST have been acquired by Fannie or Freddie prior to June, 1, 2009.
· The homeowner’s current loan cannot have any more than one 30-day late payment in the past 12 months and no late payments in the last 6 months.
· There are no restrictions for a recent Bankruptcy, Foreclosure or Short Sale, etc. on a homeowner’s credit report.
· If a homeowner qualifies for the HARP program, they MUST also show a “benefit” for the borrower to refinance. (Lower payment, lower interest rate, shorter amortization period/term of loan, ARM to a fixed rate, etc.)
For Fannie Mae-owned loans:
· No FICO requirement.
· Does not have to be primary residence. Can be second home or an investment property.
· If the property is deeded in a trust, the home can be refinanced as long as the trust paperwork shows the original borrower are the same owners of the trust.
· If the payment is increasing more than 20%
o Minimum FICO of 620.
o Maximum DTI (Debt to Income) of 45%.
o Verification of income and assets.
o Verification of employment (4506-T executed).
For Freddie Mac-owned loans:
· You must refinance through your current loan servicer.

The popularity of the HARP mortgage program has steadily grown since 2009. The three months ending in February 2011 saw record volume of 145,000 new HARP loans.

For more information on HARP 2.0 please visit www.NevadaHARP.com

For information and to contact Fannie Mae visit www.fanniemae.com  or call 800-7FANNIE (800-732-6643). For information on Freddie Mac visit www.freddiemac.com  or call 800-FREDDIE (800-373-3343).

The Mark A. Baker Mortgage Team Launches
Home Affordable Refinance Program Website To Educate Homeowners

Website to Help Guide “Underwater” Homeowners to See if They Qualify

The Mark A. Baker Team, an experienced mortgage origination firm, to launch new company website, www.NevadaHARP.com , to help Nevada homeowners determine if they qualify for the newly updated federal program known as Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP 2.0). First established in 2009, the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) was designed to assist homeowners in refinancing their Fannie Mae (FNM) and Freddie Mac (FRE) mortgages, even if the homeowners owe more than the home’s current value.

“The HARP program can help many underwater Nevada homeowners refinance their mortgages. It can be very confusing to find the information needed to see if you can even qualify, let alone going through the entire process with lenders. That is why I decided to build the website to educate and guide homeowners in the process to improve their financial position,” says Mark Baker, of The Mark A. Baker Team. “It’s not even fully known how many people will qualify for the HARP 2.0 program, although it is a worthwhile cause to let the community know about it and hopefully our efforts will help guide qualified homeowners through what can otherwise be an arduous process.”

The primary objectives of the newly revised HARP 2.0 are:
o To reduce the homeowner’s monthly principal and interest payments.
o Reduce their interest rate and the length of the loan.
o Move homeowners from a more risky loan structure (such as interest-only mortgage or a short-term Adjustable Rate Mortgage / ARM) to a more stable structure (such as a fixed-rate mortgage).
Mark Baker, of The Mark A. Baker Team in Las Vegas, brings more than 12 years of experience in the mortgage industry and a comprehensive knowledge of the housing market in Nevada. Ranked as #1 Loan Originator in Nevada by Broker Magazine, Baker and his team offer services for homeowners that qualify to refinance their mortgage.
For more information on HARP 2.0 or to contact The Mark A. Baker Team visit www.NevadaHARP.com

Mark A. Baker
– Biography

Mark A. Baker, of The Mark A. Baker Team in Las Vegas, has more than 12 years of experience in the mortgage industry and extensive knowledge of the Las Vegas market. Baker has been identified as one of the most prominent mortgage experts serving in the Las Vegas Valley. As a Loan Originator and Branch Manager for Sierra Pacific Mortgage, he is responsible for marketing and originating residential mortgage loans from Real Estate professionals as well as individual clients.

Baker is also a highly respected speaker in the mortgage industry and has been chosen by organizations from across the U.S. to deliver talks to mortgage professionals as well as motivational speeches on success. Baker shares his own personal story, his vast knowledge of the mortgage industry and identifies the tools necessary to achieve success in any market.

The combination of excellent customer service, industry expertise and “doing the right thing” for clients has earned Baker and his team several accolades. Such as:

Mark Baker was ranked as one of the top Retail Originators for Sierra Pacific Mortgage in 2009 and 2010.
From 2007 – 2009 Baker was consistently one of the top two Originators for Meridias Capital.
Mortgage Originator Magazine ranked Mark Baker #30 for number of loans closed in the U.S. for 2006.
Mark A. Baker was ranked #1 Residential Loan Originator in Nevada by Broker Magazine in 2006.
From 2003 to 2005 Baker was consistently in the top two Originators for Silver State Mortgage.

Baker continues to combine his knowledge and expertise to provide every client the excellent services they deserve. Mark enjoys playing golf and spending time with his wife Carla, and his twin boys, Bradley and Anthony.

Please visit www.NevadaHARP.com!!