HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL-NCC/AREA/OHIO

Richmond 30 Logansport 24

Lafayette Jeff 43 Marion 21

Kokomo 53 Anderson 12

Indianapolis Roncalli 49 Harrison 45

Centerville 63 Northeastern 14

Shenandoah 34 Hagerstown 14

Tri 26 Winchester 0

Knightstown 28 Lincoln 20

Union City 9 Union County 7

Jennings County 21 Connersville 18

Monroe Central 38 Wes-Del 0

New Palestine 17 Greenfield Central 14

Bellbrook 42 Brookville 21

Oakwood 23 Monroe 21

Eaton 7 Franklin 0

Madison 13 Northridge 0

Waynesville 28 Carlisle 6

Troy 42 Greenville 6

Tri-Village 58 Mississinawa Valley 0

Ft. Loramie 64 Twin Valley South 0

Covington 26 Tri-County North 0

Arcanum 62 Bradford 12

Princeton 56 Middletown 24

Mt. Healthy 35 Talawanda 0

Valley View 57 Milton-Union 14

Preble Shawnee 42 Dixie 14

Bethel 28 Miami East 19

 

INDIANA FOOTBALL SCORES

Attica 22, N. Vermillion 19

Avon 49, Fishers 14

Beech Grove 29, Monrovia 14

Blackford 22, Elwood 15

Bluffton 33, Greensburg 30

Boonville 35, Mt. Vernon (Posey) 7

Bremen 28, Glenn 8

Brownstown 43, Seymour 42

Carmel 38, Indpls N. Central 14

Carroll (Ft. Wayne) 65, Ft. Wayne South 0

Cascade 27, N. Putnam 13

Castle 42, Ev. Reitz 7

Caston 36, N. White 0

Center Grove 66, Lawrence Central 0

Centerville 63, Northeastern 14

Central Noble 35, Lakeland 14

Columbia City 35, New Haven 32

Columbus East 35, Floyd Central 7

Columbus North 41, Terre Haute North 21

Covenant Christian 36, Heritage Christian 21

Danville 35, Southmont 7

Decatur Central 35, Plainfield 20

Delphi 49, Clinton Prairie 14

Delta 33, New Castle 21

Eastbrook 71, Alexandria 14

Eastern (Greentown) 53, Clinton Central 8

Eastern Hancock 35, W. Central 0

Eastside 69, Prairie Hts. 0

Elkhart Central 49, S. Bend St. Joseph’s 6

Ev. Central 24, Jasper 17

Ev. Mater Dei 29, Ev. North 14

Ev. Memorial 42, Ev. Bosse 3

Fairfield 29, Angola 17

Forest Park 42, S. Spencer 7

Ft. Wayne Dwenger 38, Ft. Wayne Concordia 12

Ft. Wayne Northrop 35, Ft. Wayne Luers 25

Ft. Wayne Snider 35, Ft. Wayne Wayne 6

Garrett 21, W. Noble 0

Gibson Southern 38, Heritage Hills 0

Greencastle 48, Brown Co. 14

Greenwood 42, Indpls Perry Meridian 17

Hamilton Hts. 35, Twin Lakes 14

Hamilton Southeastern 14, Zionsville 13

Highland 20, Munster 3

Homestead 56, Ft. Wayne North 36

Huntington North 28, DeKalb 12

Indian Creek 27, Edgewood 7

Indpls Cathedral 37, Cin. La Salle, Ohio 28

Indpls Chatard 38, Guerin Catholic 0

Indpls Park Tudor 40, Oldenburg 6

Indpls Roncalli 49, Lafayette Harrison 45

Jennings Co. 21, Connersville 18

Jimtown 49, S. Bend Clay 6

Knightstown 28, Cambridge City 20

Kokomo 53, Anderson 12

LaVille 42, Knox 20

Lafayette Jeff 43, Marion 21

Lapel 41, Traders Point Christian 6

Lawrence North 27, Indpls Ben Davis 24, OT

Lawrenceburg 48, Batesville 13

Leo 48, Bellmont 13

Linton 50, N. Daviess 14

Maconaquah 55, N. Miami 8

Madison 55, Mitchell 20

McCutcheon 20, Indpls Tech 12

Merrillville 33, LaPorte 7

Michigan City 48, Lake Central 6

Milan 62, Edinburgh 0

Mishawaka 36, Concord 19

Mishawaka Marian 20, Penn 16

Mississinewa 74, Frankton 8

Monroe Central 38, Wes-Del 0

Mooresville 39, Franklin 30

Mt. Vernon (Fortville) 27, Pendleton Hts. 21

North Decatur 48, Rushville 0

North Harrison 42, Eastern (Pekin) 0

North Montgomery 42, Crawfordsville 6

North Newton 36, Frontier 22

North Posey 27, Tecumseh 15

New Palestine 17, Greenfield 14

New Prairie 30, S. Bend Adams 26

Noblesville 20, Franklin Central 13

Northfield 24, Wabash 8

Northridge 7, NorthWood 0

Northview 26, Indpls Lutheran 25, 2OT

Norwell 21, E. Noble 17

Oak Hill 22, Madison-Grant 12

Paoli 48, Indpls Shortridge 8

Peru 28, Rochester 7

Pioneer 48, Triton 6

Plymouth 37, Wawasee 12

Richmond 30, Logansport 24

River Forest 70, Hammond Noll 18

Riverton Parke 38, Cloverdale 20

South Adams 29, Adams Central 9

South Bend Riley 24, S. Bend Washington 21

South Central (Union Mills) 48, Lake Station 12

South Decatur 12, Springs Valley 6

South Putnam 36, W. Vigo 12

South Vermillion 51, Parke Heritage 44

Salem 36, Corydon 20

Scottsburg 24, Charlestown 14

Shenandoah 34, Hagerstown 14

Sheridan 65, Taylor 22

Silver Creek 70, Clarksville 0

Southport 40, Bloomington South 14

Southridge 14, Tell City 12

Southwood 54, Manchester 13

Speedway 43, Indpls Washington 8

Sullivan 48, Owen Valley 12

Switzerland Co. 27, Rock Creek Academy 6

Terre Haute South 56, Bedford N. Lawrence 14

Tippecanoe Valley 57, Whitko 24

Tipton 56, Northwestern 6

Tri 26, Winchester 0

Tri-Central 36, Carroll (Flora) 0

Tri-West 42, Lebanon 7

Union City 9, Union Co. 7

Vincennes 32, Ev. Harrison 14

West Lafayette 62, Benton Central 6

Warren Central 29, Indpls Pike 27

Warsaw 41, Goshen 28

Western 23, Cass 0

Western Boone 37, Frankfort 0

Westfield 43, Brownsburg 42, OT

Whiteland 38, Martinsville 0

Winamac 28, Culver 12

Woodlan 22, Jay Co. 20

Yorktown 46, Shelbyville 9

POSTPONEMENTS AND CANCELLATIONS

Indpls Attucks vs. Phalen, ccd.

Indpls Ritter vs. Triton Central, ccd.

 

NFL WEEK 3

Sunday, September 27, 2020

Chicago Bears at Atlanta Falcons 1:00p (ET) 1:00p FOX

Los Angeles Rams at Buffalo Bills 1:00p (ET) 1:00p FOX

Washington Redskins at Cleveland Browns 1:00p (ET) 1:00p FOX

Tennessee Titans at Minnesota Vikings 12:00p (CT) 1:00p CBS

Las Vegas Raiders at New England Patriots 1:00p (ET) 1:00p CBS

San Francisco 49ers at New York Giants 1:00p (ET) 1:00p FOX

Cincinnati Bengals at Philadelphia Eagles 1:00p (ET) 1:00p CBS

Houston Texans at Pittsburgh Steelers 1:00p (ET) 1:00p CBS

New York Jets at Indianapolis Colts 4:05p (ET) 4:05p CBS

Carolina Panthers at Los Angeles Chargers 1:05p (PT) 4:05p CBS

Detroit Lions at Arizona Cardinals 1:25p (MST) 4:25p FOX

Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Denver Broncos 2:25p (MT) 4:25p FOX

Dallas Cowboys at Seattle Seahawks 1:25p (PT) 4:25p FOX

Green Bay Packers at New Orleans Saints 7:20p (CT) 8:20p NBC

 

Monday, September 28, 2020

Kansas City Chiefs at Baltimore Ravens (Mon) 8:15p (ET) 8:15p ESPN

 

COLLEGE FOOTBALL

Saturday, Sept. 26

Kansas State at No. 3 Oklahoma | 12 p.m. | Fox

No. 5 Florida at Ole Miss | 12 p.m. | ESPN

No. 7 Notre Dame at Wake Forest | 12 p.m. | ABC

No. 23 Kentucky at No. 8 Auburn | 12 p.m. | SEC Network

No. 13  UCF at East Carolina | 12 p.m. | ESPN+

No. 24 Louisville at Pitt | 12 p.m. | ACC Network

Georgia Southern at No. 19 Louisiana | 12 p.m. | ESPN2

Campbell at Appalachian State | 12 p.m. | ESPN+

Georgia Tech at Syracuse | 12 p.m. | ESPN3

Georgia State at Charlotte | 12 p.m. | ESPNU

FIU at Liberty | 1 p.m. | ESPN3

Iowa State at TCU | 1:30 p.m. | FS1

Tulane at Southern Miss | 2:30 p.m. | Stadium

Mississippi State at No. 6 LSU | 3:30 p.m. | CBS

No. 8 Texas at Texas Tech | 3:30 p.m. | Fox

West Virginia at No. 15 Oklahoma State | 3:30 p.m. | TBD

No. 22 Army at No. 14 Cincinnati | 3:30 p.m. | TBD

UTEP at UL Monroe | 3:30 p.m. | ESPNU

Tulsa at Arkansas State | 3:30 p.m. | ESPN2

No. 4 Georgia at Arkansas | 4 p.m. | SEC Network

Duke at Virginia | 4 p.m. | ACC Network

Texas State at Boston College | 6 p.m. | ESPN3

South Florida at Florida Atlantic | 6 p.m. | CBSSN

No. 2 Alabama at Missouri | 7 p.m. | ESPN

North Texas at Houston | 7 p.m. | ESPN+

Houston Baptist at Louisiana Tech | 7 p.m. | ESPN3

Stephen F. Austin at SMU | 7 p.m. | ESPN+

Vanderbilt at No. 10 Texas A&M | 7:30 p.m. | SEC ALT

No. 16 Tennessee at South Carolina | 7:30 p.m. | SEC Network

Florida State at No. 12 Miami (FL) | 7:30 p.m. | ABC

Kansas at Baylor | 7:30 p.m. | ESPNU

NC State at No. 20 Virginia Tech | 8 p.m. | ACC Network

Troy at No. 18 BYU | 10:15 p.m. | ESPN

 

NBA PLAYOFFS

Boston 126 Miami 108

 

NHL PLAYOFFS

Tampa Bay 5 Dallas 4

 

MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL

Tampa Bay 6 Philadelphia 4

Miami 4 NY Yankees 3 (10)

Cleveland 4 Pittsburgh 3

Atlanta 8 Boston 7 (11)

Chicago Cubs 10 Chicago White Sox 0

Cincinnati 7 Minnesota 2

LA Dodgers 9 LA Angels 5

Toronto 10 Baltimore 5

Kansas City 3 Detroit 2

Texas 5 Houston 4 (10)

Oakland 3 Seattle 1 (10)

Milwaukee 3 St. Louis 0

St. Louis 9 Milwaukee 1

NY Mets at Washington postponed

Arizona 4 Colorado 0

Arizona 11 Colorado 5

San Francisco 5 San Diego 4

San Diego 6 San Francisco 5

 

Reds top Twins 7-2, clinch 1st playoff spot since 2013

From three soaring home runs to an exuberant race out of the dugout in celebration of their postseason berth, the Cincinnati Reds made plenty of noise in Minnesota’s empty ballpark.

They’re playing like they won’t leave quietly, either.

Mike Moustakas homered twice, Freddy Galvis hit a solo shot and the Reds clinched their first playoff spot since 2013, beating the AL Central-leading Minnesota Twins 7-2 on Friday night.

“We’re going to be as much of a threat as anyone,” said slugger Joey Votto, who has spent his entire 14-year career with the Reds and is the only player remaining from that 2013 team. This will be his fourth trip to the postseason.

“I like this team much more than I liked those teams, and I really liked those teams,” Votto said.

The Reds (30-28), who can finish as high as the fifth seed in the eight-team NL field, raised their record to two games above .500 for the first time since May 13, 2017, after Wade Miley, the fifth reliever, wrapped up a scoreless ninth.

Sporting MLB-issued red shirts commemorating their spot in the playoffs, Cincinnati players roared after the final out and streamed onto the diamond for hugs, high fives and a full-team picture.

The Twins (35-23) failed to secure home-field advantage for the wild-card series, when Cleveland rallied to beat Pittsburgh and forge a second-place tie with Chicago in the division race. Minnesota leads the White Sox and Indians by one game, with two to play.

The Reds took a one-and-done loss in the NL wild-card game in 2013, the last year they finished with a winning record, going 90-72 in Dusty Baker’s final season as manager. Three skippers later, David Bell has guided them back for more. The Reds were 15-21 on Sept. 1.

 

Marlins clinch 1st playoff berth since 2003, beat Yanks 4-3

Forced from the field by COVID-19, the Miami Marlins returned with enough force to reach the playoffs for the first time since their 2003 championship.

An NL-worst 57-105 a year ago, they sealed the improbable berth on the field of the team that Miami CEO Derek Jeter and manager Don Mattingly once captained.

“I think this is a good lesson for everyone. It really goes back to the players believing,” Mattingly said Friday night after a 4-3, 10-inning win over the New York Yankees.

Miami will start the playoffs on the road Wednesday, its first postseason game since winning the 2003 World Series as the Florida Marlins, capped by a Game 6 victory in the Bronx over Jeter and his New York teammates at the previous version of Yankee Stadium.

“We play loose. We got nothing to lose. We’re playing with house money.,” said Brandon Kintzler, who got DJ LeMahieu to ground into a game-ending double play with the bases loaded after Jesus Aguilar hit a sacrifice fly in the top of the 10th. “We are a dangerous team. And we really don’t care if anyone says we’re overachievers.”

Miami (30-28), second behind Atlanta in the NL East, became the first team to make the playoffs in the year following a 100-loss season. The Marlins achieved the feat despite being beset by a virus outbreak early this season that prevented them from playing for more than a week.

After the final out, Marlins players ran onto the field, formed a line and exchanged non socially-distant hugs, then posed for photos across the mound.

“I can’t contain the tears, because it’s a lot of grind, a lot of passion,” shortstop Miguel Rojas said. “It wasn’t just the virus. Last year we lost 100 games. But we came out this year with the hope everything was going to be better. When we had the outbreak, the guys who got an opportunity to help the organization, thank you for everything you did.”

 

Astros clinch final AL playoff spot despite loss to Rangers

Ryan Pressly had no interest in waiting to see if the Astros would get the help they needed to clinch the last spot in the expanded American League playoffs after the Houston reliever couldn’t finish it himself when he was a strike away.

The Los Angeles Dodgers pitched in anyway by beating the Angels to give Houston a franchise-record fourth straight trip to the postseason, and a shot at redemption after the offseason sign-stealing scandal that tarnished a 2017 World Series championship.

Joey Gallo’s run-scoring fielder’s choice in the 10th inning completed a 5-4 victory for Texas as the Rangers rallied from a run down in each of the last two innings Friday night, starting with Ronald Guzman’s two-out, two-strike solo homer off Pressly in the ninth.

“Who cares?” Pressly, who had his fourth blown save in 16 chances, said of staying up to see what happened with the Angels, before LA lost. “We’ve got to take care of business first.”

Actually, they don’t. The Astros (29-29) just had to wait a couple of extra hours to wrap up second place in the AL West, which became official with the Angels’ 9-5 loss.

Now Houston can start planning for a wild-card matchup that could be against Oakland, which ended a three-year run atop the AL West for the defending AL champion.

Currently the only one of eight AL playoff qualifiers in the pandemic-shortened season without a winning record, the Astros will try to put the cheating scandal behind them, but with an injury-plagued roster missing ace Justin Verlander, young slugger Yordan Alvarez and possibly closer Roberto Osuna.

Houston will be led by the first manager to take five different franchises to the playoffs.

 

Freeman’s 2-run HR in 11th lifts Braves past Red Sox, 8-7

Freddie Freeman hit a two-run homer to lead off the 11th inning and the Atlanta Braves beat the Boston Red Sox 8-7 on Friday night to clinch the No. 2 seed in the National League playoffs.

Freeman’s homer off Jeffrey Springs (0-2) drove in Ender Inciarte, who started the inning on second base, and bolstered the Braves slugger’s case for the NL MVP Award.

“He absolutely should,” Braves manager Brian Snitker said about Freeman winning MVP. “The guy is having an unbelievable year. … He checks all the boxes.”

Snitker said Marcell Ozuna, who had three hits and drove in two runs, also deserves consideration.

Freeman was given a rare day off from starting before walking as a pinch-hitter in the ninth. He said he was looking for a fastball from Springs in the 11th and was ready when it came. After a rain-delayed game against Miami on Thursday night, Freeman prevented the Braves from playing deep into another evening.

“I was just trying to send everyone home,” Freeman said.

The Red Sox are 0-4 against Atlanta this season, including a three-game sweep in Boston.

“They battled great,” Red Sox manager Roenicke said. “Get behind, they come back, kept doing it, so offense, I thought we did a great job. We just didn’t pitch as well in the late innings when we got the lead. Everything else I thought was good. It’s a shame to lose a game.”

Alex Verdugo’s sacrifice fly off Shane Greene (1-0) drove in Rafael Devers in the top of the 11th, giving Boston a 7-6 lead.

 

Darvish, five homers lead Cubs past fading White Sox 10-0

Yu Darvish pitched seven strong innings for his NL-leading eighth win, Willson Contreras homered twice and the Chicago Cubs moved to the brink of clinching the NL Central title by pounding the crosstown White Sox 10-0 Friday night.

Victor Caratini, Kyle Schwarber and Javier Baez also went deep as Cubs used the longball to break out of an offensive funk and end a three-game losing streak. They reduced their magic number for securing the division crown to one game after St. Louis split a doubleheader with Milwaukee.

“I like the homers,” Cubs manager David Ross said. “That’s getting back to what these guys do.”

The Cubs entered the game with a .220 team batting average, fourth lowest in the majors, but unloaded against the fading White Sox.

Contreras hit a three-run shot of Dylan Cease (5-4) in the third, then exited the batter’s box with sky-high high bat-flip. He greeted White Sox utility man Yolmer Sanchez, who pitched the ninth, with a solo shot for his eighth career multi-homer game.

“We were on fire and I think we needed it today,” Contreras said. “It’s good. We finally wake up.”

The White Sox managed just three hits off Darvish and lost their season high sixth straight. Like the Cubs, the South Siders have secured a playoff spot, but slipped into a tie for second place in the AL Central with Cleveland.

Darvish (8-3), a contender for the NL Cy Young Award, struck out five and walked one as he cruised to his first win since beating the Cardinals on Sept. 4. In three starts prior to Friday, the right-hander from Japan slipped from his earlier groove and was 0-2 with a 4.26 ERA.

 

Walk away: Indians rally again, keep AL Central hopes alive

Once again, the Indians grabbed water bottles, poured from the dugout and danced around the infield grass like little kids at recess.

Walk-off week rolls on.

Cesar Hernandez ripped an RBI double into the right-field corner with two outs in the ninth inning as Cleveland rallied for its third dramatic win in four days, a 4-3 victory Friday night over the Pittsburgh Pirates that kept the Indians’ hopes alive for winning the AL Central.

“That’s what we want,” said starter Carlos Carrasco. “We want to win the division.”

Down 3-1 and held to one hit for eight innings, the Indians found more of the late-inning magic that has carried them this week.

Tyler Naquin drew a leadoff walk off Chris Stratton (2-1) in the ninth and pinch-hitter Jordan Luplow, who hit a walk-off homer in the ninth on Wednesday night to beat the Chicago White Sox, pounded an RBI double high off the wall in left.

Delino DeShields – who broke up Pittsburgh’s no-hit bid with a perfectly placed bunt single in the seventh – hit a one-out RBI single. After Francisco Lindor lined out, it was Hernandez’s turn at playing hero, and after he delivered on a 3-2 pitch, he was chased by his celebrating teammates.

Adam Plutko (2-2) picked up his first career win in relief for the Indians (34-25), who have clinched a playoff spot but want more. They they can improve their seed and still overtake Minnesota and the White Sox, still stinging from a four-game sweep by Cleveland.

It’s quite a turnaround for the Indians, who recently dropped eight straight from Sept. 8-16 and have been plagued with offensive inconsistency all season.

But as October nears, they’re playing their best ball.

 

Shattenkirk scores in OT, Lightning up 3-1, on verge of Cup

Kevin Shattenkirk will never forget having his contract bought out in the summer of 2019 and joining the Tampa Bay Lightning because he felt their core players had a similar chip on their shoulders after a shocking first-round exit.

More than a year later, he created a moment to remember to put the Lightning on the verge of making good on years of unfulfilled potential.

Shattenkirk scored a power-play goal in overtime after a questionable penalty, and the Lightning beat the Dallas Stars 5-4 Friday night to take a 3-1 lead in the final and move a victory away from lifting the Stanley Cup. With Game 5 on Saturday night, Tampa Bay was potentially 24 hours away from its second championship in franchise history after winning it in 2004.

“Looking forward to tomorrow night because then it could all come really full circle,” Shattenkirk said. “We’ve got a job to do here. It’s still not finished.”

It almost is for a core group that has so far been unable to get over the hump despite being one of the best teams in the NHL for much of the past decade. Shattenkirk came over after the New York Rangers let him go, but guys like Nikita Kucherov, Victor Hedman, Ondrej Palat, Tyler Johnson and Andrei Vasilevskiy and coach Jon Cooper have been around a while and are focused on finishing this.

“They came here to do something,” Cooper said. “They’re on their way, but we’ve said all along, we haven’t won anything yet. We still have to win one more and we’re not taking anything for granted.”

It was another dominant performance by top players who looked exactly like they wouldn’t be denied after getting this far. Point, the Lightning’s top center, scored consecutive goals at the end of the first period and start of the second, creating and sustaining the kind of momentum that has been so important in the playoffs.

 

Celtics control second half, top Heat to win Game 5 in East

Their season saved for at least two more days, Boston coach Brad Stevens offered the most succinct assessment of his Celtics.

“We’re prideful,” Stevens said.

Celtic Pride. It was on display Friday night – when Jayson Tatum and his teammates announced very loudly that they’re not ready to see the world that exists outside the NBA’s restart bubble quite yet.

Tatum had 31 points and 10 rebounds, Jaylen Brown added 28 points and the Celtics shook off a slow first half to top the Miami Heat 121-108 in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference finals and stave off elimination.

“Our deal was to come out and play, come out and compete, give it our best shot and I thought we played pretty well in the second half,” Stevens said. “But we’re going to have to do it again and again because of the position we’re in.”

The Heat lead the series 3-2, with Game 6 on Sunday.

Daniel Theis had 15 points and 13 rebounds for the Celtics, who trailed by 12 early but outscored Miami 41-25 in the third quarter and never looked back. Kemba Walker scored 15 points, Marcus Smart had a 12-point, eight-rebound, eight-assist night and Gordon Hayward scored 10 for the Celtics.

Goran Dragic scored 23 points before fouling out with 4:27 left for Miami, which got 20 from Duncan Robinson.

“It’s certainly not going to be easy,” Robinson said. “We’ve got to band together to do difficult things.”

Jimmy Butler scored 17, Tyler Herro and Jae Crowder each had 14 and Bam Adebayo 13 for the Heat – which could get nothing to fall from 3-point range.

Miami was 7 for 36 from beyond the arc, now shooting 24.8% on 3’s in its last 13 quarters – after shooting 38.3% on those in the playoffs before that drought.

 

Mid-American Conference Announces Resumption of Football

MUNCIE, Indiana – Football is coming back this fall in the Mid-American Conference.

The league’s Council of Presidents, on the recommendation of the Medical Advisory Panel, voted unanimously Friday to resume the season with a six-game, conference-only schedule beginning Wednesday, Nov. 4. The season was postponed in August because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The complete MAC schedule will be announced at a later date. The league plans to play the MAC Football Championship game Dec. 18 or 19.

“The pandemic has caused many challenges for our students, including our student-athletes. But I am gratified that our student-athletes who play football will be able to resume practice and competition this Fall,” said Geoffrey S. Mearns, Ball State University President. “I joined with all of the other MAC presidents in making this important decision based on the recommendations of a team of medical experts. Their recommendations include a robust testing protocol that will substantially mitigate the risk to the players, the coaches, and the other members of our University community.”

The MAC will implement a COVID-19 testing program requiring four antigen tests per week with all positive tests needing confirmation with a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test. Any student-athlete with a positive test will enter a cardiac screening protocol. The complete testing protocols will be released next week and will take effect Monday, Oct. 5.

“In August, we were clear that at Ball State we would continue to explore opportunities for our teams to compete and keep the guidance from medical experts top of mind as our teams prepared for athletic activity,” said Beth Goetz, Ball State University Director of Athletics. “That guidance has led us to an opportunity for our football team to participate this Fall which we are thrilled about. I am grateful to our medical team, the Mid-American Conference medical advisory group, our student-athletes, coaches and staff for the diligent preparation. We will continue to create a safe environment for everyone involved. I can’t wait to see the football team in action and all of our student-athletes back in uniform soon.”

The MAC is establishing criteria relative to contest interruptions/cancelations, monitoring and reporting of test results as well as other COVID-19 regulations consistent with the NCAA resocialization guidelines. All football return to play is subject to national, state and local health guidelines.

No general public attendance or tailgating will be allowed at games.  The participation of Marching Band, Dance, Cheer and Spirit Squads at football games will be guided by Conference protocols at institutional discretion consistent with public health guidance.

The Mid-American Conference suspended fall sports on Aug. 8. Football is the only sport being resumed with all others (M/W Soccer, M/W Cross Country, Field Hockey, Women’s Volleyball) tentatively scheduled to return during the spring sports season when their respective NCAA Championships will occur.

 

2020 MOUNTAIN WEST FOOTBALL SEASON TO BEGIN ON OCTOBER 24 

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – The Mountain West Conference Board of Directors met last night and approved plans to resume football competition following the Aug. 10 indefinite postponement of fall sports due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The Conference’s amended regular-season schedule will begin on Saturday, Oct. 24, with the intent to play eight games. The MW Football Championship Game is slated for Saturday, Dec. 19. Any return to competition is subject to state, county and local approvals.

The Mountain West has partnered with Quest Diagnostics to implement testing protocols across all member institutions. The agreement with Quest delivers frequent testing with rapid results, providing a major step forward for sport competition to resume. The Mountain West will require all football student-athletes, coaches, trainers and other individuals that are on the field to undergo testing three times per week. Test results must be completed and recorded prior to each game. Student-athletes who test positive for the coronavirus through point of contact (POC) testing would require a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test to confirm the result of the POC test.

“The health and well-being of our student-athletes continue to guide all decisions,” said Dr. Mary Papazian, San José State University President and Chair of the MW Board of Directors. “The availability of rapid testing addresses one of the main concerns that was expressed by our Board, the MW Health and Safety Advisory Committee, as well as by student-athletes and coaches. Our student-athletes have voiced their desire to compete, and it is the Board’s shared opinion that football can be conducted with appropriate mitigation. We continue to learn more about the virus each day and will continue to monitor the pandemic moving forward. We will be ready to change course if necessary should new information come forth, or we feel an appropriate environment cannot be sustained on our campuses.” 

The MW is in the process of finalizing thresholds for competition interruption, monitoring test results, and other health and safety protocols that are consistent with NCAA resocialization guidelines.

“This is a great opportunity to get our student-athletes back on the field of competition in a cautious and regulated fashion,” commented MW Commissioner Craig Thompson. “We appreciate the efforts our Board, Directors of Athletics, Health and Safety Advisory Committee and Conference staff have put into developing the necessary parameters for our students-athletes to return to competition. The rapid testing element was critical for us to provide an effective solution for our athletes, coaches, officials and event staff.”

Stadium capacities will be determined by each member institution in accordance with state, county and local health ordinances in consultation with government officials. A complete 2020 Mountain West football schedule will be forthcoming.

 

PAC-12 TO BEGIN FOOTBALL

A major college football season that was in peril six week ago as conferences succumbed to concerns about COVID-19 is reconstituting.

The West Coast got back in the game Thursday night, The Pac-12 set Nov. 6 to start a seven-game season, joining the Big Ten in overturning August decisions to punt on fall football. The Mountain West followed up a few hours later by announcing it is aiming to kick off Oct. 24.

Nine of the 10 FBS conferences are now ready to have their seasons completed by Dec. 20, the day the College Football Playoff selection committee is scheduled to pick teams to play for the national championship and in the most lucrative bowls.

As soon as Friday, the Mid-American Conference, the first FBS league to postpone, could make it 10 out of 10.

All that talk about playing football in the winter and spring, about whether it was a good idea to play during a pandemic at all? Out the window. Not even a pandemic could stop college football at the schools that play it at the highest level.

“The discussion among the presidents and chancellors was largely about the benefits as well as the cons of starting in the fall versus starting in January,” said University of Oregon President Michael Schill, the head of the Pac-12’s CEO Group. “The consensus opinion was the benefits of starting in the fall were much greater than the benefits of starting in the … winter.”

With the Pac-12 having secured daily COVID-19 testing for its athletes and been given the green light from state and local health officials, the CEOs voted unanimously to lift a Jan. 1 moratorium on athletic competition.

“Things changed from the first time we addressed this issue,” Schill said.

The Pac-12’s men’s and women’s basketball seasons can start Nov. 25, in line with the NCAA’s recently announced opening date. The football championship game is set for Dec. 18, putting the conference back in play for the biggest postseason games – and the multimillion dollar payouts that come with them.

 

ADAMS DOUBTFUL FOR GAME VS. SAINTS

Green Bay Packers coach Matt LaFleur says it’s “probably doubtful” that wide receiver Davante Adams will play Sunday night at New Orleans due to a hamstring injury.

Adams hasn’t practiced this week since leaving the Packers’ 42-21 victory over the Detroit Lions in the second half. LaFleur has said there’s a possibility Adams could play even without practicing all week if the three-time Pro Bowl selection feels fine on Sunday.

“We’ll give him the rest of the week to see where he’s at, but ultimately we’ve got to see if he’s able to go,” LaFleur said Friday. “I know he’s doing everything in his power to make that happen, but I’d say right now he’s probably doubtful.”

Adams has 17 catches for 192 yards and two touchdowns this season. He caught 14 passes in a season-opening victory at Minnesota to tie Don Hutson’s 78-year-old franchise record for receptions in a game.

The status of defensive tackle Kenny Clark also remains uncertain after he missed the Lions game with a groin injury. Clark has practiced some this week.

“He’s made progress, there’s no doubt,” LaFleur said. “He’s definitely not 100% yet. Again, he’s another guy we’re going to give up until game time and we’ll have to determine whether or not he can go.”

 

JONES HAS A CHANCE TO PLAY SUNDAY

Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones still has a chance to play against the Chicago Bears on Sunday after missing practice this week with a hamstring injury.

Jones was listed as questionable on Friday.

“We’ll take it all the way to the game with Julio,” coach Dan Quinn said, noting that Jones has been involved with the game plan.

Atlanta’s secondary will be without safety Ricardo Allen (elbow) and cornerback Kendall Sheffield (foot).

It is not unusual for Jones to play in games after missing most or all of the practices.

“He has the rare ability to do that when called upon if he is available,” Quinn said. “We’ll give him and a couple others all the time and space they need.”

Jones aggravated a hamstring injury in last week’s loss to Dallas.

If Jones is limited or held out, there would be more pressure on Calvin Ridley, who shares the NFL lead with 239 yards and leads the league with four touchdown catches.

Among other starters listed as questionable are right tackle Kaleb McGary (knee), linebacker Foye Oluokun (hamstring) and defensive ends Dante Fowler (ankle) and Takk McKinley (groin).

 

MARTINEZ GETS EXTENSION

Manager Dave Martinez and the Washington Nationals have agreed to work out a contract extension that will keep him in charge of the club beyond next season, according to a person with knowledge of the situation.

The person confirmed the news to The Associated Press on Friday on condition of anonymity because no official announcement had been made.

Martinez led the Nationals to the franchise’s first World Series championship in 2019, his second season as the team’s skipper.

When he initially was hired, Martinez signed a three-year deal with a club option for 2021 that had not yet been picked up by the Nationals.

After a title defense slowed by injuries and inconsistency during a 60-game season delayed and shortened by the coronavirus pandemic, Washington is 23-34 and last in the NL East. The Nationals will play a doubleheader against the New York Mets on Saturday after Friday night’s game was postponed by rain.

Martinez was sporting his World Series ring on his right hand when he spoke to reporters via a video chat before word emerged Friday afternoon of a change to his contract.

“The coaching staff and myself decided to wear it for the last week of the season, so we’ve been wearing it this whole week. It’s kind of cool,” Martinez said about his ring. “Come Sunday, it goes off and goes back in its little shiny box. But it’s kind of nice to look down and look at it.”

Asked earlier in the week whether he would like his up-in-the-air contract status resolved before the season ends, Martinez said his agent and Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo had been discussing the matter.

 

JIMENEZ OUT WITH BRUISED FOOT

Chicago White Sox outfielder Eloy Jimenez has a sprained right foot, likely sidelining the slugger for a pivotal season-ending series against the crosstown Cubs.

The White Sox had dropped a season-high five in a row heading into the weekend set, falling out of first place in the AL Central. They are hoping to get back on track heading into their playoff appearance since 2008, but the health of Jimenez is a concern.

Jimenez, who is batting .296 with 14 homers and 41 RBIs, was injured sliding across home in the seventh inning of Chicago’s 5-4 loss at Cleveland on Thursday. Manager Rick Renteria said the 23-year-old left fielder will need “to be off his feet” for a few days.

“There’s inflammation in there and they want to calm it down” Renteria said. “We’ll know more in a few days.”

The White Sox trailed the first-place Twins by a game heading into the series with the Cubs. They are just one ahead of the third-place Indians. The AL postseason begins on Tuesday.

 

FRENCH OPEN CUTS DOWN CROWD

With only one week separating the end of one and the start of the other, the Tour de France and the French Open were shaping up as a double bill of sports entertainment, with masked but nevertheless live crowds, that would bear out President Emmanuel Macron’s arguments that the country can live with the coronavirus.

The virus, however, had different ideas.

Whereas the three-week Tour reached Paris last Sunday having pulled off the coup of getting through the country’s worsening epidemic without any virus positives among its 176 riders, the French Open isn’t proving so lucky with its timing.

Play is still scheduled to start Sunday, but as infections soar across France, organizers’ plans to have thousands of spectators there each day to cheer for Rafael Nadal, Serena Williams and others have been drastically scaled back to allow just 1,000 daily visitors.

“Not the ideal situation. Nobody likes to play with these conditions, no?” 12-time French Open champion Nadal said Friday about having so few spectators. “Everybody wants to come back to the normal situation. But before that, we need to fix the most important thing, and that is the worldwide health that today is still under big problems.”

Last Sunday, tournament director Guy Forget had appeared in an upbeat mood on French TV with the exhausted-looking Tour director, who tested positive himself during the race and hadn’t been sure it would get to Paris. Forget congratulated him for the cycling roadshow that drew smaller but still sizable and enthusiastic crowds, and looked forward to welcoming 5,000 spectators per day at Roland Garros. Although postponed from their usual slots in May, June and July, both events decided not to cancel, unlike many others as the virus spread across the globe.

“Thanks to the Tour, thanks to tennis, sports are resuming again,” Forget said. “We want to experience beautiful emotions.

“If it’s 5,000 spectators, that’s better than nothing,” he added. “We see the glass half full.”