MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL
PITTSBURGH 7 CLEVELAND 5
BALTIMORE 8 LA DODGERS 5
HOUSTON 4 COLORADO 1
SAN DIEGO 2 TORONTO 0
NY METS 5 CHICAGO WHITE SOX 1
TEXAS 5 TAMPA BAY 1
OAKLAND 6 BOSTON 5
LA ANGELS 7 NY YANKEES 3
DETROIT 3 KANSAS CITY 2
MINNESOTA 6 SEATTLE 3
ST. LOUIS 6 MIAMI 4
MILWAUKEE 5 PHILADELPHIA 3
CINCINNATI 3 SAN FRANCISCO 2
ARIZONA 5 ATLANTA 3
CHICAGO CUBS 8 WASHINGTON 3
BOX SCORES: http://hosted.stats.com/mlb/scoreboard.asp
STAT LEADERS: http://hosted.stats.com/mlb/index.asp
PLAYER NEWS: http://hosted.stats.com/mlb/news.asp
MINOR LEAGUE BASEBALL
INDIANAPOLIS 5 IOWA 3
WEST WASHINGTON 7 SOUTH BEND 6
LAKE COUNTY 11 FORT WAYNE 2
SUN 82 DREAM 71
LYNX 73 SPARKS 70
MERCURY 80 SKY 62
ACES 79 STORM 63
INDIANA HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL WEEK 1
BIG 10 WEEKLY FOOTBALL SCHEDULE
MINNESOTA VS. NEBRASKA
THURSDAY, AUG. 31
WISCONSIN VS. BUFFALO
MICHIGAN STATE VS. CENTRAL MICHIGAN
MICHIGAN VS. EAST CAROLINA
PURDUE VS. FRESNO STATE
RUTGERS VS. NORTHWESTERN
INDIANA VS. OHIO STATE
ILLINOIS VS. TOLEDO
MARYLAND VS. TOWSON
IOWA VS. UTAH STATE
PENN STATE VS. WEST VIRGINIA
MARYLAND VS. CHARLOTTE
PENN STATE VS. DELAWARE
MINNESOTA VS. EASTERN MICHIGAN
ILLINOIS AT KANSAS
INDIANA VS. INDIANA STATE
IOWA AT IOWA STATE
NEBRASKA AT COLORADO
PURDUE AT VIRGINIA TECH
MICHIGAN STATE VS. RICHMOND
RUTGERS VS. TEMPLE
MICHIGAN VS. UNLV
NORTHWESTERN VS. UTEP
WISCONSIN AT WASHINGTON STATE
OHIO STATE VS. YOUNGSTOWN STATE
MICHIGAN VS. BOWLING GREEN
WISCONSIN VS. GEORGIA SOUTHERN
INDIANA VS. LOUISVILLE (IN INDIANAPOLIS, IN)
MINNESOTA AT NORTH CAROLINA
NEBRASKA VS. NORTHERN ILLINOIS
NORTHWESTERN AT DUKE
ILLINOIS VS. PENN STATE
PURDUE VS. SYRACUSE
MARYLAND VS. VIRGINIA
RUTGERS VS. VIRGINIA TECH
MICHIGAN STATE VS. WASHINGTON
IOWA VS. WESTERN MICHIGAN
OHIO STATE VS. WESTERN KENTUCKY
INDIANA VS. AKRON
ILLINOIS VS. FLORIDA ATLANTIC
PENN STATE VS. IOWA
NEBRASKA VS. LOUISIANA TECH
MICHIGAN STATE VS. MARYLAND
NORTHWESTERN VS. MINNESOTA
OHIO STATE AT NOTRE DAME
MICHIGAN VS. RUTGERS
PURDUE VS. WISCONSIN
PURDUE VS. ILLINOIS
MARYLAND VS. INDIANA
MINNESOTA VS. LOUISIANA
NEBRASKA VS. MICHIGAN
IOWA VS. MICHIGAN STATE
NORTHWESTERN VS. PENN STATE
RUTGERS VS. WAGNER
NORTHWESTERN VS. HOWARD
OHIO STATE VS. MARYLAND
MINNESOTA VS. MICHIGAN
ILLINOIS VS. NEBRASKA
IOWA VS. PURDUE
WISCONSIN VS. RUTGERS
MARYLAND VS. ILLINOIS
MICHIGAN VS. INDIANA
WISCONSIN VS. IOWA
RUTGERS VS. MICHIGAN STATE
PURDUE VS. OHIO STATE
PENN STATE VS. UMASS
MICHIGAN STATE VS. MICHIGAN
IOWA VS. MINNESOTA
NEBRASKA VS. NORTHWESTERN
OHIO STATE VS. PENN STATE
INDIANA VS. RUTGERS
ILLINOIS VS. WISCONSIN
PENN STATE VS. INDIANA
NORTHWESTERN VS. MARYLAND
MINNESOTA VS. MICHIGAN STATE
WISCONSIN VS. OHIO STATE
NEBRASKA VS. PURDUE
MINNESOTA VS. ILLINOIS
NORTHWESTERN VS. IOWA (IN CHICAGO, IL)
MICHIGAN STATE VS. NEBRASKA
RUTGERS VS. OHIO STATE
MARYLAND VS. PENN STATE
MICHIGAN VS. PURDUE
INDIANA VS. WISCONSIN
ILLINOIS VS. INDIANA
NEBRASKA VS. MARYLAND
PENN STATE VS. MICHIGAN
OHIO STATE VS. MICHIGAN STATE
PURDUE VS. MINNESOTA
WISCONSIN VS. NORTHWESTERN
IOWA VS. RUTGERS
IOWA VS. ILLINOIS
MARYLAND VS. MICHIGAN
INDIANA VS. MICHIGAN STATE
OHIO STATE VS. MINNESOTA
WISCONSIN VS. NEBRASKA
NORTHWESTERN VS. PURDUE
PENN STATE VS. RUTGERS
NEBRASKA VS. IOWA
FRIDAY, NOV. 24
PURDUE VS. INDIANA
RUTGERS VS. MARYLAND
ILLINOIS VS. NORTHWESTERN
MICHIGAN VS. OHIO STATE
MICHIGAN STATE VS. PENN STATE
MINNESOTA VS. WISCONSIN
COLLEGE FOOTBALL SCHEDULE
SATURDAY, AUG. 26
NOTRE DAME VS. NAVY (DUBLIN, IRELAND) | 2:30 P.M. | NBC
MERCER VS. NORTH ALABAMA (MONTGOMERY, ALABAMA) | 3:30 P.M. | ESPN
JACKSONVILLE STATE VS. UTEP | 5:30 P.M. | CBSSN
NEW MEXICO STATE VS. UMASS | 7 P.M. | ESPN
SAN DIEGO STATE VS. OHIO | 7 P.M. | FS1
VANDERBILT VS. HAWAI’I | 7:30 P.M. | SEC NETWORK
JACKSON STATE VS. SOUTH CAROLINA STATE (ATLANTA, GEORGIA) | 7:30 P.M. | ABC
USC VS. SAN JOSE STATE | 8 P.M. | PAC-12 NETWORK
LOUISIANA TECH VS. FLORIDA INTERNATIONAL | 9 P.M. | CBSSN
THURSDAY, AUG. 31
WAKE FOREST VS. ELON | 7 P.M. | ACC NETWORK
UCF VS. KENT STATE | 7 P.M. | FS1
GEORGIA STATE VS. RHODE ISLAND | 7 P.M. | ESPN+
WESTERN MICHIGAN VS. ST. FRANCIS (PA) | 7 P.M. | ESPN+
UCONN VS. NC STATE | 7:30 P.M. | CBSSN
MINNESOTA VS. NEBRASKA | 8 P.M. | FOX
MISSOURI VS. SOUTH DAKOTA | 8 P.M. | SEC NETWORK
UTAH VS. FLORIDA | 8 P.M. | ESPN
TULSA VS. ARKANSAS-PINE BLUFF | 8 P.M. | ESPN+
UAB VS. NORTH CAROLINA A&T | 8 P.M. | ESPN+
ARIZONA STATE VS. SOUTHERN UTAH | 10 P.M. | PAC-12 NETWORK
FRIDAY, SEPT. 1
EASTERN MICHIGAN VS. HOWARD | 6:30 P.M. | ESPN+
MICHIGAN STATE VS. CENTRAL MICHIGAN | 7 P.M. | FS1
MIAMI (FLA.) VS. MIAMI (OHIO) | 7 P.M. | ACC NETWORK
GEORGIA TECH VS. LOUISVILLE (MERCEDES-BENZ STADIUM IN ATLANTA) | 7:30 P.M. | ESPN
KANSAS VS. MISSOURI STATE | 8 P.M. | ESPN+
HAWAI’I VS. STANFORD | 11 P.M. | CBSSN
SATURDAY, SEPT. 2
IOWA VS. UTAH STATE | 12 P.M. | FS1
KENTUCKY VS. BALL STATE | 12 P.M. | SEC NETWORK
LIBERTY VS. BOWLING GREEN | 12 P.M. | CBSSN
MICHIGAN VS. EAST CAROLINA | 12 P.M. | PEACOCK
PURDUE VS. FRESNO STATE | 12 P.M. | BIG TEN NETWORK
SMU VS. LOUISIANA TECH | 12 P.M. | ESPNU
TENNESSEE VS. VIRGINIA (NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE) | 12 P.M. | ABC
TCU VS. COLORADO | 12 P.M. | FOX
BOSTON COLLEGE VS. NORTHERN ILLINOIS | 12 P.M. | ACC NETWORK
OKLAHOMA VS. ARKANSAS STATE | 12 P.M. | ESPN
OLE MISS VS. MERCER | 2 P.M. | ESPN+/SECN+
IOWA STATE VS. UNI | 2 P.M. | ESPN+
TEMPLE VS. AKRON | 2 P.M. | ESPN+
OHIO VS. LONG ISLAND UNIVERSITY | 2 P.M. | ESPN+
AIR FORCE VS. ROBERT MORRIS | 2 P.M. | ALTITUDE SPORTS
OREGON VS. PORTLAND STATE | 3 P.M. | PAC-12 NETWORK
INDIANA VS. OHIO STATE | 3:30 P.M. | CBS
AUBURN VS. UMASS | 3:30 P.M. | ESPN
MARYLAND VS. TOWSON | 3:30 P.M. | BIG TEN NETWORK
WISCONSIN VS. BUFFALO | 3:30 P.M. | FS1
WESTERN KENTUCKY VS. SOUTH FLORIDA | 3:30 P.M. | CBSSN
WASHINGTON VS. BOISE STATE | 3:30 P.M. | ABC
NOTRE DAME VS. TENNESSEE STATE | 3:30 P.M. | NBC
PITT VS. WOFFORD | 3:30 P.M. | ACC NETWORK
CINCINNATI VS. EASTERN KENTUCKY | 3:30 P.M. | ESPN+
TEXAS VS. RICE | 3:30 P.M. | FOX
APPALACHIAN STATE VS. GARDNER-WEBB | 3:30 P.M. | ESPN+
ARKANSAS VS. WESTERN CAROLINA | 4 P.M. | ESPN+/SECN+
MISSISSIPPI STATE VS. SE LOUISIANA | 4 P.M. | SEC NETWORK
NORTH TEXAS VS. CAL | 4 P.M. | ESPNU
SYRACUSE VS. COLGATE | 4 P.M. | ESPN+/ACCNX
GEORGIA VS. UT MARTIN | 6 P.M. | ESPN+/SECN+
CHARLOTTE VS. SOUTH CAROLINA STATE | 6 P.M. | ESPN+
FLORIDA ATLANTIC VS. MONMOUTH | 6 P.M. | ESPN+
GEORGIA SOUTHERN VS. THE CITADEL | 6 P.M. | ESPN+
JAMES MADISON VS. BUCKNELL | 6 P.M. | ESPN+
MARSHALL VS. ALBANY | 6 P.M. | ESPN+
FLORIDA INTERNATIONAL VS. MAINE | 6:30 P.M. | ESPN+
USC VS. NEVADA | 6:30 P.M. | PAC-12 NETWORK
TEXAS A&M VS. NEW MEXICO | 7 P.M. | ESPN
UL MONROE VS. ARMY | 7 P.M. | NFL NETWORK
VANDERBILT VS. ALABAMA A&M | 7 P.M. | ESPN+/SECN+
COLORADO STATE VS. WASHINGTON STATE | 7 P.M. | CBSSN
BAYLOR VS. TEXAS STATE | 7 P.M. | ESPN+
HOUSTON VS. UTSA | 7 P.M. | FS1
KANSAS STATE VS. SOUTHEAST MISSOURI STATE | 7 P.M. | ESPN+
OKLAHOMA STATE VS. CENTRAL ARKANSAS | 7 P.M. | ESPN+
MEMPHIS VS. BETHUNE-COOKMAN | 7 P.M. | ESPN+
SOUTHERN MISS VS. ALCORN STATE | 7 P.M. | ESPN+
TROY VS. STEPHEN F. AUSTIN | 7 P.M. | ESPN+
ALABAMA VS. MIDDLE TENNESSEE | 7:30 P.M. | SEC NETWORK
ILLINOIS VS. TOLEDO | 7:30 P.M. | BIG TEN NETWORK
SOUTH CAROLINA VS. NORTH CAROLINA (CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA) | 7:30 P.M. | ABC
PENN STATE VS. WEST VIRGINIA | 7:30 P.M. | NBC
WYOMING VS. TEXAS TECH | 7:30 P.M. | CBS
LOUISIANA VS. NORTHWESTERN STATE | 7:30 P.M. | ESPN+
VIRGINIA TECH VS. OLD DOMINION | 8 P.M. | ACC NETWORK
TULANE VS. SOUTH ALABAMA | 8 P.M. | ESPNU
NEW MEXICO STATE VS. WESTERN ILLINOIS | 9 P.M. | ESPN+
UTEP VS. UIW | 9 P.M. | ESPN+
ARIZONA VS. NORTHERN ARIZONA | 10 P.M. | PAC-12 NETWORK
BYU VS. SAM HOUSTON | 10:15 P.M. | FS1
UCLA VS. COASTAL CAROLINA | 10:30 P.M. | ESPN
SAN DIEGO STATE VS. IDAHO STATE | 10:30 P.M. | CBSSN
SUNDAY, SEPT. 3
RUTGERS VS. NORTHWESTERN | 12 P.M. | CBS
SAN JOSE STATE VS. OREGON STATE | 3:30 P.M. | CBS
FLORIDA STATE VS. LSU (ORLANDO, FLORIDA) | 7:30 P.M. | ABC
MONDAY, SEPT. 4
DUKE VS. CLEMSON | 8 P.M. | ESPN
COLTS TRAINING CAMP SCHEDULE
WEDNESDAY, JULY 26 – 10-11 A.M.
SATURDAY, AUG. 5 – 6-7:30 P.M.
SUNDAY, AUG. 6 – 2-3:45 P.M.
SATURDAY, AUG. 5 – 6-7:30 P.M.
SUNDAY, AUG. 6 – 2-3:45 P.M.
TUESDAY, AUG. 8 – 9-10:30 A.M.
THURSDAY, AUG. 10 – 9-10 A.M.
TUESDAY, AUG. 15 – 9-10 A.M.
WEDNESDAY, AUG. 16 – 6-8 P.M.
THURSDAY, AUG. 17 – 6-8 P.M.
NFL PRE-SEASON SCHEDULE
NFL/HALL OF FAME GAME – AUGUST 3
N.Y. JETS VS. CLEVELAND (NBC), 8:00
THURSDAY, AUGUST 10
HOUSTON AT NEW ENGLAND, 7:00
MINNESOTA AT SEATTLE, 10:00
FRIDAY, AUGUST 11
N.Y. GIANTS AT DETROIT, 7:00
GREEN BAY AT CINCINNATI, 7:00
ATLANTA AT MIAMI, 7:00
PITTSBURGH AT TAMPA BAY, 7:00
WASHINGTON AT CLEVELAND, 7:30
DENVER AT ARIZONA, 10:00
SATURDAY, AUGUST 12
INDIANAPOLIS AT BUFFALO, 1:00
TENNESSEE AT CHICAGO, 1:00
N.Y. JETS AT CAROLINA, 4:00
JACKSONVILLE AT DALLAS, 5:00
PHILADELPHIA AT BALTIMORE, 7:00
L.A. CHARGERS AT L.A. RAMS, 9:00
SUNDAY, AUGUST 13
KANSAS CITY AT NEW ORLEANS, 1:00
SAN FRANCISCO AT LAS VEGAS, 4:00
THURSDAY, AUGUST 17
CLEVELAND AT PHILADELPHIA, 7:30
FRIDAY, AUGUST 18
CAROLINA AT N.Y. GIANTS, 7:00
CINCINNATI AT ATLANTA, 7:30
SATURDAY, AUGUST 19
JACKSONVILLE AT DETROIT, 1:00
MIAMI AT HOUSTON, 4:00
BUFFALO AT PITTSBURGH, 6:30
CHICAGO AT INDIANAPOLIS, 7:00
TAMPA BAY AT N.Y. JETS, 7:30
KANSAS CITY AT ARIZONA, 8:00
NEW ENGLAND AT GREEN BAY, 8:00
TENNESSEE AT MINNESOTA, 8:00
DENVER AT SAN FRANCISCO, 8:30
LAS VEGAS AT L.A. RAMS, 9:00
DALLAS AT SEATTLE, 10:00
SUNDAY, AUGUST 20
NEW ORLEANS AT L.A. CHARGERS, 7:05
MONDAY, AUGUST 21
BALTIMORE AT WASHINGTON (ESPN), 8:00
THURSDAY, AUGUST 24
PITTSBURGH AT ATLANTA, 7:30
INDIANAPOLIS AT PHILADELPHIA (PRIME VIDEO), 8:00
FRIDAY, AUGUST 25
DETROIT AT CAROLINA (CBS), 8:00
NEW ENGLAND AT TENNESSEE, 8:15
L.A. CHARGERS AT SAN FRANCISCO, 10:00
SATURDAY, AUGUST 26
BUFFALO AT CHICAGO, 1:00
SEATTLE AT GREEN BAY, 1:00
CLEVELAND AT KANSAS CITY, 1:00
ARIZONA AT MINNESOTA, 1:00
N.Y. JETS AT N.Y. GIANTS, 6:00
CINCINNATI AT WASHINGTON, 6:05
MIAMI AT JACKSONVILLE, 7:00
BALTIMORE AT TAMPA BAY, 7:00
LAS VEGAS AT DALLAS, 8:00
L.A. RAMS AT DENVER, 9:00
SUNDAY, AUGUST 27
HOUSTON AT NEW ORLEANS (FOX), 8:00
WEEK 1 REGULAR SEASON SCHEDULE
DETROIT LIONS AT KANSAS CITY CHIEFS (THU) 7:20P (CT) 8:20P NBC
CAROLINA PANTHERS AT ATLANTA FALCONS 1:00P (ET) 1:00P FOX
HOUSTON TEXANS AT BALTIMORE RAVENS 1:00P (ET) 1:00P CBS
CINCINNATI BENGALS AT CLEVELAND BROWNS 1:00P (ET) 1:00P CBS
JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS AT INDIANAPOLIS COLTS 1:00P (ET) 1:00P FOX
TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS AT MINNESOTA VIKINGS 12:00P (CT) 1:00P CBS
TENNESSEE TITANS AT NEW ORLEANS SAINTS 12:00P (CT) 1:00P CBS
SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS AT PITTSBURGH STEELERS 1:00P (ET) 1:00P FOX
ARIZONA CARDINALS AT WASHINGTON COMMANDERS 1:00P (ET) 1:00P FOX
GREEN BAY PACKERS AT CHICAGO BEARS 3:25P (CT) 4:25P FOX
LAS VEGAS RAIDERS AT DENVER BRONCOS 2:25P (MT) 4:25P CBS
MIAMI DOLPHINS AT LOS ANGELES CHARGERS 1:25P (PT) 4:25P CBS
PHILADELPHIA EAGLES AT NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS 4:25P (ET) 4:25P CBS
LOS ANGELES RAMS AT SEATTLE SEAHAWKS 1:25P (PT) 4:25P FOX
DALLAS COWBOYS AT NEW YORK GIANTS 8:20P (ET) 8:20P NBC
BUFFALO BILLS AT NEW YORK JETS (MON) 8:15P (ET) 8:15P ESPN/ABC
MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL
BALTIMORE ORIOLES — SENT RHP AUSTIN VOTH TO FLORIDA COAST LEAGUE (FCL) ORIOLES ON A REHAB ASSIGNMENT.
KANSAS CITY ROYALS — REINSTATED RHP ZACK GREINKE FROM THE 15-DAY IL. OPTIONED RHP MAX CASTILLO TO OMAHA (IL).
LOS ANGELES ANGELS — AGREED TO TERMS WITH FREE AGENT LHP CAM TULLAR ON A MINOR LEAGUE CONTRACT.
SEATTLE MARINERS — RECALLED OF CADE MARLOWE FROM TACOMA (PCL). PLACED OF JARRED KELENIC ON THE 10-DAY IL.
TORONTO BLUE JAYS — AGREED TO TERMS WITH SSS ARJUN NIMMALA AND NICK GOODWIN, RHPS LANDEN MAROUDIS, JOSH MOLLERUS, GRANT ROGERS, CHAY YEAGER, KELENA SAUER, JACKSON HORNUNG AND AARON MUNSON, LPHS KAI PETERSON, CONNOR O’HALLORAN AND OFS JACE BOHROFEN, SAM SHAW AND BRENNAN ORF AND C JACKSON HORNUNG. SIGNED NON-DRAFTED FREE AGENTS 2B BRYCE ARNOLD, LHP J.J. SANCHEZ AND C NATE LARUE.
ATLANTA BRAVES — SENT LHP MAX FRIED TO GWINNETT (IL) ON A REHAB ASSIGNMENT.
MIAMI MARLINS — AGREED TO TERMS WITH RHP XAVIER MEACHEM AND LHP KEVIN VAUPEL.
NEW YORK METS — PLACED OF STARLING MARTE ON THE 10-DAY IL, RETROACTIVE TO JULY 17.
PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES — AGREED TO TERMS WITH FREE AGENT RHP SHAUN ANDERSON ON A MINOR LEAGUE CONTRACT.
ST LOUIS CARDINALS — SENT RHP DREW VERHAGEN TO SPRINGFIELD (IL) ON A REHAB ASSIGNMENT. REINSTATED OF TYLER O’NEILL FROM THE 60-DAY IL. DESIGNATED RHP RYAN TEPERA FOR ASSIGNMENT.
SAN DIEGO PADRES — REINSTATED RHP ROBERT SUAREZ FROM THE 60-DAY IL. DESIGNATED LHP JOSE CASTILLO FOR ASSIGNMENT. OPTIONED RHP MATT WALDRON TO EL PASO (PCL).
EVANSVILLE OTTERS — SIGNED OF JOSH BROUGHTON.
JOLIET SLAMMERS — RELEASED C MIKE FALSETTI AND OF MATT FEINSTEIN.
NEW JERSEY JACKALS — RELEASED OF JORDAN HOWARD.
QUEBEC CAPITALES — SIGNED INF MARTIN VINCELLI-SINARD. RELEASED 1BS SAM ABBOTT AND MATHIEU SIROIS.
SCHAUMBURG BOOMERS — SIGNED RHP HUNTER HOOPES.
WASHINGTON WILD THINGS — RELEASED LHP IAN MCMAHON.
WOMEN’S NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION
MINNESOTA LYNX — ACTIVATED G AERIAL POWERS. RELEASED G KAYANA TRAYLOR FROM HER HARDSHIP CONTRACT.
PHOENIX MERCURY — SIGNED F LIZ DIXON TO A SEVEN-DAY CONTRACT. WAIVED G JENNIE SIMMS.
NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE
ATLANTA FALCONS — PLACED RB CALEB HUNTLEY ON THE ACTIVE/PHYSICALLY UNABLE TO PERFORM (PUP) LIST.
DETROIT LIONS — RELEASED K MICHAEL BADGLEY. PLACED TE DERRICK DEESE JR., QB HENDON HOOKER AND DL ZACH MORTON ON THE ACTIVE/NON-FOOTBALL INJURY LIST.
GREEN BAY PACKERS — SIGNED WR JAYDEN REED.
MIAMI DOLPHINS — PLACED CB NIK NEEDHAM O THE ACTIVE/PHYSICALLY UNABLE TO PERFORM (PUP) LIST.
NEW ORLEANS SAINTS — RELEASED C BILLY PRICE WITH A NON-FOOTBALL INJURY DESIGNATION. PLACED TE MILLER FORRISTALL ON THE ACTIVE/PHYSICALLY UNABLE TO PERFORM (PUP) LIST.
NEW YORK GIANTS — PLACED CB LEONARD JOHNSON ON INJURED RESERVE.
TENNESSEE TITANS — WAIVED RB CHARLES MCCLELLAND.
MAJOR LEAGUE SOCCER
INTER MIAMI CF — SIGNED D JORBI ALBA TO A CONTRACT THROUGH THE 2024 SEASON WITH AN OPTION FOR 2025.
NASHVILLE SC — PROMOTED LINDSEY PAOLA TO CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER.
JACKSONVILLE — NAME JUSTIN POPE PITCHING COACH FOR MEN’S BASEBALL.
WASHINGTON (MD.) NAMED MEGHAN KEELAN HEAD COACH FOR WOMEN’S LACROSSE.
TOP NATIONAL RELEASES/HEADLINES
MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL
MLB ROUNDUP: O’S PASS RAYS FOR DIVISION LEAD WITH 10-INNING WIN
Colton Cowser’s 10th-inning sacrifice fly scored Aaron Hicks to lift the Baltimore Orioles to a 4-3 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays on Thursday in the opener of a four-game series at St. Petersburg, Fla.
Adley Rutschman and Ryan O’Hearn also had RBIs for the Orioles, who moved one game in front of Tampa Bay atop the American League East standings. Felix Bautista (5-1) pitched scoreless ball in the ninth and 10th innings for Baltimore, which won for the 10th time in 12 games.
In the 10th, Adam Frazier’s sacrifice bunt moved automatic runner Hicks to third before Hicks scored on Cowser’s sacrifice fly to left off Robert Stephenson (1-4). In the bottom half, Luke Raley was hit by a pitch to put runners on first and second. Bautista then struck out Randy Arozarena, who fanned four times in five at-bats, before inducing Brandon Lowe to ground into a game-ending double play.
Yandy Diaz hit a two-run double that tied the game 3-3 for the Rays but he struck out three times.
Reds 5, Giants 1
Rookie Andrew Abbott allowed just one hit over eight shutout innings, helping host Cincinnati salvage a split of a four-game series with San Francisco.
Abbott (5-2), the first Cincinnati pitcher to work eight innings this season, retired the final 12 batters he faced. He struck out six batters en route to recording his seventh quality start in nine outings. Luke Maile homered among his three hits while Will Benson doubled twice, scored once and drove in a run for the Reds.
With two outs in the ninth inning, Wilmer Flores drilled his fourth homer of the series and 12th this season to spoil the shutout. San Francisco All-Star right-hander Alex Cobb (6-3) allowed five runs and nine hits while walking four in 4 1/3 innings.
Braves 7, Diamondbacks 5
Austin Riley hit a go-ahead, three-run home run in the eighth inning as host Atlanta defeated Arizona to salvage the finale of a three-game series.
Matt Olson followed Riley’s blast with a solo shot, finishing with two home runs and three RBIs for the Braves, who snapped a four-game losing streak. Reliever Kirby Yates (4-0) got the win despite surrendering a home run in the eighth inning; Miguel Castro (5-4) took the loss.
The game started out as a pitchers’ duel. Diamondbacks starter Zac Gallen was perfect until Orlando Arcia drilled a solo home run with one out in the sixth to break a scoreless tie. Gallen went seven innings, allowing three runs on five hits with five strikeouts and no walks. Atlanta’s Spencer Strider matched his season high with 13 strikeouts across six innings. He gave up four runs on four hits while walking one.
Mariners 5, Twins 0
George Kirby pitched seven scoreless innings and Teoscar Hernandez drove in two runs, one with a solo homer, as Seattle earned a split of its four-game series with visiting Minnesota.
Mike Ford hit a two-run homer in the eighth off the “Hit It Here Cafe” on the second deck in right field and the Mariners added a third run in the inning on a wild pitch to cap the scoring.
Kirby (9-8) scattered four hits against the Twins, who had scored 22 runs over the first three games of the series. The right-hander didn’t walk a batter and matched his career high with 10 strikeouts. Pablo Lopez (5-6) turned in a solid effort for the Twins, giving up two runs on six hits in five innings.
Brewers 4, Phillies 0
Christian Yelich hit a three-run home run and Corbin Burnes pitched eight shutout innings to help Milwaukee blank host Philadelphia and clinch the three-game series victory.
Burnes (9-5) struck out 10 across his eight innings, allowing only two hits and one walk on an even 100 pitches. Yelich finished 3-for-4 on the day; he now has five home runs this month, the most of any this season for the former National League MVP.
Taijuan Walker (11-4) was charged with the loss for the Phillies. He pitched six innings and allowed six hits, two walks and four earned runs while striking out six.
Tigers 3, Royals 0
Michael Lorenzen (5-6) continued his string of scoreless pitching in July, and Detroit backed him with enough offense to defeat host Kansas City.
The Tigers pieced together a rally with two outs in the top of the second. Nick Maton singled to right and Akil Baddoo drew a rare walk off Royals starter Zack Greinke (1-10), who hasn’t walked more than two batters in any of his 19 starts this season.
Detroit’s Nos. 8 and 9 hitters, Andy Ibanez and Eric Haase, then delivered back-to-back RBI singles to stake the Tigers to a 2-0 lead. Ibanez finished 2-for-4. Lorenzen’s streak now stands at 23 2/3 scoreless innings dating to June 30.
Blue Jays 4, Padres 0
Chris Bassitt pitched six shutout innings and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Alejandro Kirk each homered as Toronto notched a victory over visiting San Diego to avoid a three-game series sweep.
Bassitt (10-5) gave up four hits in six innings, marking the seventh time this season he pitched at least six frames without allowing a run. Bassitt struck out five and walked one. Jordan Romano worked a scoreless ninth for the Blue Jays, his first appearance since leaving the All-Star Game on July 11 with lower-back tightness.
Xander Bogaerts had three hits for the Padres to raise his career total to 1,500. San Diego hit into four double plays, including one in each of the final three innings while losing for the fourth time in its past six games. Blake Snell (6-8) gave up only one run in five innings but lost for the first time since June 28.
White Sox 6, Mets 2
Yasmani Grandal laced a two-run double and Elvis Andrus added an RBI triple as Chicago scored four runs in the sixth inning to pull away from host New York.
White Sox starter Michael Kopech (4-8) allowed just two hits, both by Omar Narvaez, including a solo homer in the fifth inning. Kopech, who picked up his first win in eight starts, walked four and struck out five in 5 2/3 innings.
Left-hander Jose Quintana (0-1) lost in his season debut for the Mets after undergoing bone graft surgery on a left rib in March. He gave up two runs in five innings, allowing six hits but no walks and fanning three.
CARDINALS REINSTATE OF TYLER O’NEILL FROM 60-DAY IL
The St. Louis Cardinals reinstated outfielder Tyler O’Neill from the 60-day injured list on Thursday.
O’Neill was in the team’s starting lineup for Thursday night’s game against the Chicago Cubs, batting seventh and playing left field.
The sixth-year major leaguer has been sidelined since May with lingering back problems.
In a corresponding move, the Cardinals designated right-hander Ryan Tepera for assignment. O’Neill’s return also is expected to bump outfielder Dylan Carlson into a reserve role.
O’Neill, 28, was batting .228 with two home runs and 12 runs in just 29 games before he was sidelined. He’s a career .250 hitter with 71 HRs in his six seasons with the Cardinals.
Tepera, 35, gave up two runs in his only two appearances with the Cardinals and was 2-2 with a 7.59 ERA in 12 relief appearances for the Cardinals and Los Angeles Angels this season. He’s 19-20 with a 3.62 ERA in nine seasons with five clubs, including the Toronto Blue Jays (2015-19).
PADRES ACTIVATE RHP ROBERT SUAREZ FOR FIRST TIME IN 2023
The San Diego Padres reinstated right-hander Robert Suarez from the 60-day injured list on Thursday, with the reliever set to make his 2023 debut after recovering from an elbow injury.
In corresponding moves, the Padres designated left-hander Jose Castillo for assignment and optioned right-hander Matt Waldron to Triple-A El Paso.
Suarez, 32, was 5-1 with a 2.27 ERA as a rookie for the Padres last season after a five-year run pitching in Japan. He was rewarded with a five-year, $46-million deal to remain in San Diego.
Suarez was activated before the Padres’ road game Thursday afternoon against the Toronto Blue Jays but did not pitch in the 4-0 defeat.
Castillo, 27, had a 3.29 ERA in 37 appearances in 2018, but multiple injuries limited him to three appearances since, including one outing this season when he struggled in a July 4 game against the Los Angeles Angels. He allowed four runs on two hits in one-third of an inning.
Waldron, 26, made his major league debut on June 24 and gave up two runs on four hits over 4 2/3 innings of his lone appearance — a 2-0 loss to the Washington Nationals.
REPORT: RAYS DOING HOMEWORK ON STROMAN
The Tampa Bay Rays are reportedly doing their homework on Chicago Cubs right-hander Marcus Stroman, according to Sahadev Sharma and Patrick Mooney of The Athletic.
Stroman, 32, is having one of his finest seasons to date, authoring a 2.88 ERA and 3.39 FIP over 118 2/3 innings.
The two-time All-Star is playing out the final season of a two-year, $50-million contract that includes a $21-million player option for 2024.
Stroman is considered one of the top pitchers potentially available ahead of MLB’s Aug. 1 trade deadline.
After starting the campaign on a historic hot streak that included 13 straight wins, the Rays have hit a snag, ceding first place in the AL East for the first time all year on Wednesday to the Baltimore Orioles. They’re still tied atop the division but with a lower win percentage than the O’s at 60-39 after losing four straight. They have the second-best winning percentage in the Junior Circuit and the third-best in MLB. The Rays and Orioles begin a four-game series on Thursday.
The starting rotation is also hobbled, having lost breakout studs Jeffrey Springs and Drew Rasmussen, as well as Josh Fleming and Shane Baz. The club is currently relying on ace Shane McClanahan, who recently returned from the injured list, as well as Zach Eflin, Tyler Glasnow, and rookie Taj Bradley.
Despite the injuries, the Rays’ starting staff still ranks fifth in the majors in FanGraphs’ WAR and is collectively posting a 3.63 ERA (first in MLB) and 3.67 FIP (second).
If the Rays do land Stroman, it would be a return to the division for the veteran right-hander, who spent his first six seasons with the Toronto Blue Jays, winning a Gold Glove and posting a 3.76 ERA and 3.60 FIP in 135 games. He’s also played for the New York Mets over his nine-year career.
MARINERS’ KELENIC PLACED ON IL WITH FRACTURED FOOT AFTER KICKING WATER COOLER
The Seattle Mariners placed outfielder Jarred Kelenic on the 10-day injured list with a fractured left foot, the team announced Thursday.
Kelenic injured himself kicking a water cooler after striking out during the Mariners’ 6-3 loss to the Minnesota Twins on Wednesday, manager Scott Servais said, according to Shannon Drayer of KIRO.
Seattle didn’t provide a return timeline for the 24-year-old, who won’t require surgery, Drayer adds.
Kelenic was visibly upset Thursday while discussing the injury. “I let the emotions get the best of me,” he admitted, adding that he takes “full responsibility.”
The lefty has been one of the Mariners’ most productive hitters this season, ranking first on the club in isolated power and slugging percentage and second in wRC+.
Seattle called up 26-year-old outfielder Cade Marlowe to take Kelenic’s spot on the active roster. The 2019 draft pick has never played in the majors but posted a .793 OPS with 47 RBIs and 25 steals at Triple-A this campaign.
EVALUATING WHICH TEAMS WOULD BENEFIT MOST FROM AN OHTANI DEADLINE TRADE
Having fallen to the outskirts of the wild-card chase, and with Mike Trout injured, the Los Angeles Angels have become open to the idea of trading baseball’s two-way superstar, Shohei Ohtani.
Ohtani could become the ultimate two-month rental – perhaps three months when including October – for contenders leading into the Aug. 1 trade deadline.
A trade involving Ohtani is rooted in logic since the Angels are unlikely to reach the playoffs and have a terrible track record of identifying and developing prospects. On the cusp of being the most coveted and most expensive free agent in baseball history this offseason, he could net the Angels some new pieces for the pipeline.
Every team would benefit on the field and at the turnstiles by adding Ohtani. But we were curious to evaluate which hopeful contenders would benefit the most. We’re excluding the Dodgers because the Angels reportedly won’t consider trading him to their market rival, which is considered among the favorites, if not the favorite, to sign Ohtani as a free agent.
To be considered in this exercise, a club must own a playoff probability of 20% or better entering play Wednesday. (The Angels are at 11% on FanGraphs.) This includes the Braves, Phillies, Marlins, Giants, Diamondbacks, Brewers, Padres, Rays, Blue Jays, Orioles, Yankees, Red Sox, Twins, Guardians, Rangers, and Astros.
The clubs that Ohtani would help most are those contenders with voids at the top of their rotations and/or lack an impact bat at designated hitter. But we also considered other factors such as a lack of platoon balance in their lineups, and it also wouldn’t hurt to play in a ballpark more favorable to left-handed hitting. We’ll award points based on these criteria to arrive at a best-fit ranking.
Because Ohtani will be a relative bargain for the rest of the season – he’ll be owed $10 million for the final two months, and he’ll sell tickets – just about every market size ought to be in the running.
We’ll eliminate one more team, the Braves, who are the only organization to lack at least one top-50 prospect, according to MLB Pipeline and FanGraphs rankings. The package for Ohtani is expected to be pricey for a rental. The Braves also own the best division and World Series odds. One could argue that lessens the incentive.
So where does Ohtani best fit? Let’s explore.
Who needs an ace?
Having an ace pitcher is the most important piece for hopeful contenders in not only reaching the postseason but advancing through it.
We examined two criteria to identify top-of-the-rotation arms: strikeout-minus-walk rate, which measures largely what resides within a pitcher’s control (minimize walks and miss opponents’ bats), and FanGraphs WAR total, another measure of performance quality.
There are 18 qualified starting pitchers who enjoyed K-BB spreads of at least 20% entering play Wednesday, and there were 27 qualified pitchers with 2-plus WAR. Fifteen pitchers qualified in both categories.
Many contenders have at least one arm that meets either of those thresholds, and the Phillies, Marlins, Giants, Twins, and Astros each roster two. They have less need to add Ohtani’s pitching prowess.
Four contenders lack such an arm: the Brewers, Orioles, Red Sox, and Guardians.
This is arguably where Ohtani would make the most impact: as a front-line starter who could not only help one of these teams reach the postseason but could start in the wild-card round or in multiple games once series extend to best-of-sevens.
Who needs a DH?
Any team would find a place for Ohtani in their lineup, but he ideally slots in at DH given his dual-role usage.
While DH is often an afterthought in team construction, there’s great variance in how teams are performing at the position this year.
Some contenders have extracted great value, such as the Red Sox (3.7 WAR) and Marlins (2.4). Others have seen the position become a black hole, like the Brewers (minus-1.6) and Padres (minus-0.5).
Some contenders already have significant injuries to stars who play DH (Astros and Yordan Alvarez) or could face a crowding at the position (Yankees). This was all taken into consideration.
Help wanted: Left-handed hitting
While this is a lesser concern and weighted much less heavily in our formula, teams don’t want to become too dominant on one side of the plate, as that allows opponents to match up more easily against them.
The Blue Jays had dramatic platoon issues last year. Their significant right-handed tilt has lessened this season but remain one of the most right-handed-heavy lineups in the game.
The Astros’ lineup has become the most right-handed-heavy in the majors with just 475 left-handed plate appearances against righties this season. They should get the left-handed-hitting Alvarez back from his oblique injury in the near future now that he’s begun his rehab stint in Triple-A.
Despite their short porch in right field, the Yankees rank in the bottom third of plate appearances by left-handed hitters versus right-handed pitching.
Another lesser consideration is that baseball is, of course, the only major sport in North America where home venues don’t have uniform dimensions.
The Orioles have the most extreme ballpark splits in the game, which is one reason they’ve loaded up on left-handed bats.
Camden Yards is really two different parks, depending on which side of the plate one hits from. It is the fifth-most friendly ballpark for left-handed home runs but the fourth-least favorable for right-handed power. Overall, Camden owns a 101 park factor for left-handed hitters and a 95 mark for right-handed batters.
Boston is the most favorable park for left-handed batting, according to Baseball Savant’s three-year rolling metric. San Diego is the least favorable.
Bye, bye, bye
The chances of clinching a bye is an important a factor when considering making a substantial offer for the ultimate two-month rental.
The Rangers and Rays have about a 60% chance at opening-round byes as of Wednesday, with the Orioles, Astros, and Giants holding probabilities in the 22-28% range. Ohtani could impact those races.
And the best fit is …
The formula is based on a maximum of 30 points each for already having one or more elite pitchers, the need at DH, and a higher probability of clinching a playoff spot. Up to 7.5 points were added for platoon splits and ballpark friendliness for left-handed hitters. I also added or subtracted a couple of points for market size since a larger-market team could have the opportunity to overwhelm Ohtani with an extension offer before he hits free agency. A lower score denotes a stronger need for Ohtani.
The Brewers need rotation and DH help, so they graded out on top. They could use another left-handed bat – especially with Rowdy Tellez’s recent injury. They’re going to be hard-pressed to hold off the Cincinnati Reds without help. Ohtani would make the most impact in Milwaukee.
Ohtani could also move the needle in the AL East where the Orioles, Blue Jays, and Rays are all competing for one postseason bye, and where Ohtani would fill glaring needs.
The Orioles don’t have an ace and have extreme ballpark splits. The Blue Jays need a left-handed power bat arguably more than any other contender, and a Kevin Gausman-Ohtani one-two punch in the rotation could make a major impact. The Rays have cooled after a historic start. Who better than to inject some life into a club?
Ohtani also could help the Rangers solidify their surprising ascendance in the AL West and would make up for the loss of Jacob deGrom.
Ohtani would help any club down the stretch, but those five clubs could use him the most.
FLEETWOOD AMONG BRITISH OPEN LEADERS. MCILROY AMONG THE SURVIVORS.
HOYLAKE, England (AP) The British Open showed again Thursday that even after 163 years, golf’s oldest championship can still deliver a few surprises.
It started with Christo Lamprecht, the South African amateur as tall as a flag stick and almost as thin, making three birdies over his last six holes and posting a 5-under 66 to become the first amateur in 12 years to share the 18-hole lead at the Open.
Curiosity about the 22-year-old amateur turned to glee at the site of local hero, Tommy Fleetwood, running off three straight birdies on the back nine at Royal Liverpool to join him atop the leaderboard. Emiliano Grillo of Argentina became the third to post 66 by holing a birdie putt from 50 feet on the last hole.
Not to be overlooked was Jordan Spieth hitting a shank; Rory McIlroy missing a 3-foot putt; Justin Thomas going bunker-to-bunker-to-rough – each shot further away from the flag than the previous one – in making a 9 on the 18th hole to post his highest round in a major at 82.
McIlroy, trying desperately to end his nine-year drought in the majors, was happy to get away with a 71. He risked the round getting away from him until making up for that wee miss on the eighth hole with a 40-foot birdie on the 14th that sparked him.
And then it almost got away from him in the end – just like the bunkers on the 18th ruined so many other rounds – when he left one in the pot bunker and expertly got out the second time and made a 10-foot par.
Scottie Scheffler, the world’s No. 1 player, got around in 70 in the morning before the breeze turned into a stiff wind.
Masters champion Jon Rahm reached a point where he felt nothing was going his way, and it wasn’t. He hit what he thought was a good shot into the 18th only for it to find a bunker, forcing him to play back toward the fairway and turning a birdie chance into bogey. Rahm opened with a 74.
“It does ask a lot of questions, this golf course,” an exasperated Shane Lowry said after a 72.
What it left behind after the longest day – 15 hours of golf – were few answers.
Fleetwood raised hopes of becoming the first English winner of a British Open in England since Tony Jacklin in 1969. He kept his own hopes measured, fully aware of gallery support for the long-haired lad raised about an hour up the coast.
“First day, so this was a pretty good one,” Fleetwood said. “All I want to do is keep working hard keep playing, and keep putting myself in position. And obviously, it’ll be my turn soon.”
The biggest surprise to everyone but the 6-foot-8 (2.03 meters) Lamprecht was seeing an amateur atop the leaderboard at the final major of the year. He qualified by winning the British Amateur at Hillside, a links course just north of Liverpool on the Lancashire coast.
“The first tee shot was the only bit of nerves I had all day,” said Lamprecht, an All-American at Georgia Tech. “Yeah, I just kind of walked off the first tee box after hitting my snap-hook drive, and my caddie just told me, ‘Listen, you’re playing The Open as an amateur; no need to stress.’
“We kind of had fun from there.”
The last amateur to share the 18-hole lead at the Open was Tom Lewis at Royal St. George’s in 2011. Irish amateur Paul Dunne shared the 54-hole lead at St. Andrews in 2015.
Lamprecht appreciates it’s unusual for an amateur to hold his own against the pros, at a major championship no less. But that’s where it ends.
“I think I earned my spot to be here,” he said. “I think the way I played today, I earned to be on the top of the leaderboard. It’s not a cocky thing to say. I just personally think I believe in myself, and I guess stepping onto the first tee box … you should be believing that you should be the best standing there.”
Brian Harman, Adrian Otaegui of Spain and Antoine Rozner of France each birdied the 18th and were at 67. The group at 68 included U.S. Open champion Wyndham Clark, 50-year-old former British Open champion Stewart Cink and Max Homa.
Spieth was at 69, a strong start considering the shank he hit from tall grass and the golf ball above his feet on the eighth hole. The ball was declared lost and he made double bogey.
“I’ve never hit one before, so it took me a couple holes to feel like I got my feet back under me,” Spieth said. He did just that until finding a pot bunker off the tee and finished with a bogey.
The bunkers were frightening, with players unsure if the ball would settle in the middle or be up against the vetted, sodden walls. Either way, it was about as penal as a water hazard.
“That’s why they’re there,” Rahm said. “You have to try to avoid them. Plenty of people did a good job and shot a low score today. It’s very difficult to avoid them all.”
The bunkers around the 18th were particularly diabolical. There were 19 scores of double bogey or worse on the closing hole on Thursday. The last time at Royal Liverpool in 2014, there were 26 doubles or worse the entire tournament.
Thirty-one players managed to break par, and players like McIlroy at even par hardly shot themselves out of the championship.
“I needed to stay patient out there. It wasn’t the easiest of days,” McIlroy said. “But I’m still right in there.”
McIlroy won the last time at Royal Liverpool, opening with rounds of 66-66 and going on to a wire-to-wire win at 17-under par. Tiger Woods won in Hoylake in 2006 at 18 under.
This is a different Royal Liverpool, slightly lengthened and with a new par-3 17th hole that wreaked havoc for some – Phil Mickelson made double bogey, Lucas Herbert a triple – but this day was all about the bunkers.
“It’s the most well-bunkered golf course that we play,” Lowry said. “They’re everywhere, and they’re very penal.”
NFL OWNERS UNANIMOUSLY APPROVE THE $6.05B SALE OF THE COMMANDERS FROM SNYDER TO HARRIS GROUP
BLOOMINGTON, Minn. (AP) NFL owners unanimously approved the sale of the Washington Commanders on Thursday from Dan Snyder to a group led by Josh Harris and including Magic Johnson for a record $6.05 billion.
All 32 team owners voted for the sale, which is the highest price paid for a North American professional sports team. After the finance committee approved the agreement with the new ownership group, Harris Blitzer Sports and Entertainment, a special league meeting was called to consider and vote on it before the 2023 season begins.
Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones beamed as he walked off an escalator and headed toward the meeting room, granting a brief interview with reporters about the impending sale of his team’s division rival.
“It’s a hallmark day,” Jones said. “I’m excited about the prospects of going into Washington and giving them some capital punishment.”
Snyder had owned his favorite boyhood team since 1999, when he bought it for $800 million. Success was fleeting, both on and off the field. With Snyder in charge, the team made the playoffs just six times in 24 years, only twice won a postseason game and went 166-226-2 overall. The franchise has lost a significant amount of luster from the glory days under coach Joe Gibbs, who won three Super Bowls in his 12-year run from 1981-92.
Then there were the problems outside of football, from a feud with minority owners that led Snyder to buy out their shares of the team to allegations of sexual harassment by former employees, which prompted a series of investigations into workplace misconduct. Over and over again, Snyder said he would never sell the team.
The tide began to shift on that front last October when Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay said there was “merit to remove” Snyder, an ouster that would have required votes from at least 24 of the other 31 clubs. Two weeks later, Snyder and his wife Tanya hired a firm to begin exploring a sale of part or all of one of the NFL’s oldest franchises – one that has called the nation’s capital home since 1937.
Ultimately, that process led to a group chaired by Harris. His investment crew also includes David Blitzer, with whom he co-owns the NBA’s Philadelphia 76ers and the NHL’s New Jersey Devils, Washington-area businessman Mitchell Rales and more than a dozen others. The unusually large ownership group needed and received league finance approval for a deal that shattered the $4.35 billion Walmart heir Rob Walton paid last year for the Denver Broncos.
The special meeting for the Commanders sale was conducted at the same hotel adjacent to the Mall of America in suburban Minneapolis where Walton’s group gained formal control of the Broncos.
Their biggest immediate challenge for the long-term future of the organization is a new stadium to replace FedEx Field, the rushed-to-completion home of the team since 1997 in Landover, Maryland, that has not aged well. Virginia abandoned a stadium bill more than a year ago, a consequence of the number of off-field controversies swirling around the team.
Bringing the fans back is a major priority after Washington ranked last in the league in attendance in 2022 and second-to-last in 2021. The team rebranded last year as the Commanders after dropping the name Redskins in 2020 and generically going by the Washington Football Team for two seasons.
Snyder’s attorneys attended the meeting. He did not.
Owners also received an in-person update at the meeting from former U.S. Attorney Mary Jo White on her investigation for the NFL into the Commanders that began 1½ years ago. That was launched in light of the congressional review into workplace misconduct that also included a referral to the Federal Trade Commission for potential business improprieties by Snyder.
Commissioner Roger Goodell has pledged to make White’s report public when it’s completed.
COMMANDERS’ DAN SNYDER FINED $60 MILLION FOR SEXUALLY HARASSING EMPLOYEE, FINANCIAL IMPROPRIETIES
Washington Commanders owner Dan Snyder sexually harassed a team employee and oversaw team executives who deliberately withheld millions of dollars in revenue from other clubs, and he has agreed to pay a $60 million fine, the league announced Thursday.
The NFL released a 23-page report detailing the findings of an independent investigation into Snyder’s conduct just minutes after its owners unanimously approved the sale of the Commanders to Josh Harris.
The investigation was led by former Securities and Exchange Commission chair Mary Jo White and conducted by her law firm, Debevoise & Plimpton. The league had pledged to make the findings of the probe public.
Investigators concluded that Washington withheld $11 million in revenue that should have been shared with other teams, an amount the report suggests may have been far greater. White’s firm was unable to reach a conclusion about tens of millions of additional dollars that may have been withheld in part because Snyder and the team did not cooperate fully with the investigation, according to the report.
The report concluded that Snyder sexually harassed former team employee Tiffani Johnston, allegations that Johnston first made last year in front of a House committee. Snyder placed his hand on Johnston’s thigh at a team dinner and pushed her toward his car as they were leaving the restaurant, the report said.
“The conduct substantiated in Ms. White’s findings has no place in the NFL,” Commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement. “We strive for workplaces that are safe, respectful and professional. What Ms. Johnston experienced is inappropriate and contrary to the NFL’s values.”
Snyder has denied Johnston’s allegations and repeated that denial in an interview with White’s investigators. He only agreed to speak with investigators for one hour, the report said.
Investigators spoke with Johnston several times and “found her to be highly credible,” the report said, and her account was corroborated by witnesses and other evidence.
The firm did not conclude whether Snyder was personally aware of the financial improprieties, but witnesses told investigators that Snyder repeatedly pressured team employees to improve its financial performance, telling them, “every dollar matters.” Documents detailing how the team moved revenue into accounts that shielded the money from other teams were shared with Snyder on at least one occasion, the report said.
VIKINGS ROOKIE WR JORDAN ADDISON CITED FOR 140 MPH DRIVING IN 55 ZONE BY STATE PATROL
(AP) — Minnesota Vikings first-round draft pick Jordan Addison was cited early Thursday for speeding and reckless driving, after a state trooper clocked him at 140 mph in his sports car in a 55 mph zone.
The Minnesota State Patrol said Addison was pulled over without resistance in a Lamborghini Urus at 3:07 a.m. by a trooper who was also traveling eastbound on Interstate Hwy. 94 in St. Paul about a mile outside of downtown. The 21-year-old Addison was the only person involved, according to the state patrol report. An investigation into the incident was ongoing.
The Vikings said they were aware of the situation and “gathering additional information.” Rookies are scheduled to report Sunday for training camp.
Addison was selected out of USC with the 23rd overall pick in the NFL draft, following the cost-cutting move to release veteran wide receiver Adam Thielen. Addison was the fourth consecutive wide receiver taken after none went in the first 19 slots, following Ohio State’s Jaxon Smith-Ngjiba (Seattle), TCU’s Quentin Johnston (Los Angeles Chargers) and Boston College’s Zay Flowers (Baltimore).
The 2021 Biletnikoff Award winner for the nation’s top wide receiver at Pittsburgh, Addison transferred to USC for his final college season. He had 59 catches for 875 yards and eight touchdowns in 2022 for the Trojans. In two years with the Panthers, Addison had 2,259 receiving yards.
Addison took part in rookie minicamp with the Vikings but was just an observer for most of the on-field offseason practices in May and June because of an undisclosed injury.
Behind superstar Justin Jefferson, the Vikings have moved fourth-year wide receiver K.J. Osborn into a more prominent role even with the addition of Addison.
Osborn made headlines in a more redeeming highway incident earlier this year, when he and three other people helped rescue a man from a burning car that had just crashed in Austin, Texas.
JETS SEND WIDE RECEIVER DENZEL MIMS TO THE LIONS IN A TRADE THAT INCLUDES 2025 DRAFT PICKS
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. (AP) The New York Jets traded wide receiver Denzel Mims to the Detroit Lions on Thursday, parting ways with the disappointing 2020 second-round draft pick who requested to be dealt last summer.
The Jets, who announced the teams agreed to terms on the trade, also sent a 2025 conditional seventh-round pick to the Lions for a conditional sixth-rounder in 2025.
New York told Mims it would release him if the Jets couldn’t find a trade partner, two people with knowledge of the situation said Wednesday. The people spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the team didn’t announce its intentions.
Mims was excused from joining the team when rookies and veterans reported for training camp Wednesday. The team’s first camp practice with Aaron Rodgers at quarterback was Thursday.
“I wish him luck,” Jets coach Robert Saleh said shortly before the trade was announced. “I appreciate Denzel, appreciate what he did. And sometimes a change of scenery is always good, it’s good for everybody. But he’s a big boy, he’s big, long, strong and fast and he’ll have an opportunity, if everything gets done, to play for another team and show why everyone was so excited about him.”
Mims requested a trade last summer when he became unhappy about his reduced role in the offense. New York chose to instead keep the former Baylor star, but he finished with just 11 catches for 186 yards in 10 games.
Nearly a year later, Mims received his wish for a fresh start elsewhere.
In Detroit, Mims joins a wide receiver group that includes Amon-Ra St. Brown, Marvin Jones Jr., Kalif Raymond, Josh Reynolds and seventh-rounder Antoine Green. The Lions needed depth at the position after Jameson Williams, the team’s first-round pick last year, was suspended along with fellow receivers Quintez Cephus and Stanley Berryhill in April for violating the NFL’s gambling policy.
Williams is eligible to return in Week 7, but Cephus and Berryhill were since waived by Detroit.
In three seasons with New York, Mims had 42 catches for 676 yards and no touchdowns in 30 games, including 15 starts.
Mims dealt with hamstring issues early as a rookie, but showed some flashes with 23 catches for 357 yards in nine games.
A case of food poisoning caused him to lose 20 pounds during the 2021 offseason and he dealt with a rough bout of COVID-19 during the season – and his role in new offensive coordinator Mike LaFleur’s system dwindled. He finished with just eight catches for 133 yards in 11 games.
Mims was still low on the depth chart last summer and was never able to see consistent snaps – prompting his trade request.
Even with Rodgers now at quarterback and Nathaniel Hackett the Jets’ offensive coordinator, Mims likely would have had a tough time cracking New York’s rotation. Garrett Wilson, last season’s NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year, tops a depth chart that includes Corey Davis, Allen Lazard, Mecole Hardman and Randall Cobb – all of whom were likely ahead of Mims.
Mims is the second wide receiver recently drafted by the Jets to be traded. Elijah Moore, a second-rounder in 2021, was dealt to Cleveland in March after he also requested a trade last season because of frustration over his limited role in the offense.
KIFFIN FOLLOWS SEC COMMISSIONER’S ADVICE NOT TO ANSWER EVERY QUESTION ASKED
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Mississippi coach Lane Kiffin remembered, and followed, a piece of advice from Southeastern Conference Commissioner Greg Sankey on Thursday.
He doesn’t have to answer every question. No matter how much Kiffin might want to share his take.
Kiffin passed up an opportunity Thursday as Southeastern Conference wrapped up media days when asked about where Ole Miss boosters rank in the league.
“I am not about to start putting rankings out on boosters from top to bottom in the conference,” Kiffin said to laughter. “God, I want to so bad, though.”
Kiffin recalled that Sankey told him to remember that the SEC has grown a lot and no, he doesn’t have to answer every question. So Kiffin tried to follow that advice — to a point.
“Like I said kind of before, you want to look at the best boosters in the country and eventually the schools that have the most money that decide to pay the players, just look at recruiting rankings the next few years. That will give you your answer.”
College running backs have noticed how their position is being treated at the NFL where teams are refusing to reward veterans with big contracts. So they’re working to make themselves as valuable as possible by becoming more versatile.
Quinshon Judkins of Mississippi was All-SEC as a freshman after running for 1,567 yards and scoring 17 total touchdowns. He noticed Saquon Barkley didn’t get an extension from the New York Giants and told ESPN that it’s a big concern.
Judkins chose Ole Miss knowing coach Lane Kiffin would use him in a variety of ways, increasing his future value to the NFL.
“The selling point for me was how Coach Kiffin could use me in the passing game, the run game, not being a basic running back,” Judkins said. “Expanding my game and showing the NFL and everybody what I can do as a player.”
Arkansas running back Raheim Sanders wanted to focus more on this season personally. But yes, he thinks the position is being undervalued by the NFL.
“I feel like they should be getting more money,” Sanders said.
KEEP IT SHORT
South Carolina coach Shane Beamer tried to correct himself Thursday during his third appearance at SEC media days.
“My three children have not let me forget that I had the second-longest opening statement last summer, so they have been telling me for two weeks, ‘Don’t be that guy again!’ I didn’t think I was long last year, but apparently I was, so I’ll be much shorter this year or try to,” Beamer said.
Beamer logged in with an o pening statement that counted 2,185 words. Only Vanderbilt coach Clark Lea talked more with 2,340 words to start his comments a year ago. Beamer used more than 2,000 words as estimated by 247sports.com as he covered everything from 38 new players to special teams.
“So Sutton, Olivia, Hunter — my three children — hope I did better with the opening statement,” Beamer concluded.
Texas will be joining the SEC in 2024 along with Oklahoma and bringing both the Longhorns’ burnt orange and nickname of UT to the league.
Make no mistake. Tennessee coach Josh Heupel knows who the real UT is.
“There’s only one real UT,” Heupel said of Tennessee. “One right shade of orange.”
That’s not because Heupel won a national title playing quarterback at Oklahoma, where he later coached. No, Heupel coaches at a program now that not only is a charter member of the SEC, the conference was formed in a hotel in Knoxville where a plaque still marks the spot.
GREAT TWITTER FOLLOW
Ole Miss coach Lane Kiffin has more than 629,000 followers on Twitter, and some of them include his Rebels like senior defensive end Cedric Johnson. And yes, Johnson thinks Kiffin is very good and funny on Twitter.
Kiffin also is different on social media than in real life.
“If you follow him on Twitter too much, you would think he’s a completely different person when you met him in person,” Johnson said. “He’s pretty low key and laid back.”
Kiffin tweets so much Johnson couldn’t pin down one as the funniest he could remember. Players coming into Ole Miss who are more familiar with Kiffin’s social media persona can be a little shocked at how different he is in person.
“If you’re a freshman coming in, I feel like it could be a shock is like, ‘Oh, this guy, he’s really laid back and chill, so I feel like could be a shock for some guys,” Johnson said.
WITH NCAA PROBE IN VOLS’ REARVIEW MIRROR, JOSH HEUPEL READY TO CHASE TITLES
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Josh Heupel made clear when hired at Tennessee he saw the NCAA investigation hanging over the program as a mere speed bump.
With the probe now concluded and his Volunteers escaping a postseason ban, it’s full speed ahead.
“It’s great to have it in the rearview mirror and not something that you’re driving by all the time,” Heupel said Thursday as his Volunteers wrapped up the fourth and final day of Southeastern Conference media days.
Tennessee concluded an investigation that started in November 2020 last week. The NCAA issued a scathing report outlining more than 200 infractions that included 18 Level I violations and approximately $60,000 paid out to athletes and their families in recruiting infractions under former coach Jeremy Pruitt.
The NCAA also punished Tennessee with scholarship reductions and imposed an $8 million fine without a postseason ban. The NCAA cited Tennessee’s cooperation with the investigation involving violations described as “egregious and expansive.”
On Thursday, Heupel credited Tennessee administration for backing him in his first season by refusing self-impose a bowl ban in his first season. Tennessee fired Pruitt and nine others in January 2021, athletic director Phillip Fulmer retired and new athletic director Danny White hired Heupel.
Tennessee started cutting scholarships in Heupel’s first season, leaving him with 65 players on scholarship. Heupel noted other programs also beat up on the Volunteers in recruiting, often “sensationalizing” the punishments the program could face.
“There was huge hurdles in our first two years to get to this point that we’ve had to climb out of. And, you know, the easiest thing would have been for our administration and for me is to take the bowl ban in year one,” Heupel said. “But that wasn’t right. The guys that were left were were innocent guys.”
Mississippi coach Lane Kiffin’s first question Thursday was about Tennessee’s NCAA penalties. He coached the Vols to a 7-6 record in 2009 before leaving for Southern California and noted that didn’t take long. Kiffin noted he read Heupel was “ecstatic” about the penalties and the fine.
“So that kind of probably tells you about how severe the penalties are in their eyes,” Kiffin said. “I’m happy for them that they don’t have to go through what we went through. So good for them.”
Even under the NCAA cloud, Heupel went 18-8 at Tennessee. He and his Vols are coming off an 11-2 record in 2022 that was their best since 2001. Tennessee beat Alabama, LSU and routed No. 10 Clemson in the Orange Bowl — programs that won six of seven College Football Playoff national titles.
The Vols ranked No. 1 at one point during last season for the first time in more than two decades and finished sixth in the country.
Heupel understands championships are what’s expected with Tennessee’s last national title in 1998. The Vols haven’t played in the SEC championship game since 2007 despite ranking second in the league with 13 championships.
Vacating Pruitt’s 11 wins in 2019 and 2020 dropped the Vols’ 867 total that had ranked them 10th all-time in college football.
“The standard is to compete at the highest level and win championships,” Heupel said. “You know for us that starts in the Eastern Division, which everybody knows that there’s a lot of good football that’s played in that division.”
The East has been dominated by back-to-back national champ Georgia, and the Bulldogs will visit Knoxville on Nov. 18.
Heupel has to replace Hendon Hooker, now in the NFL with the Detroit Lions. But he has Joe Milton III who took over when Hooker tore an ACL last November and guided the Vols to a rout of Vanderbilt and that Orange Bowl victory. Milton has thrown for 1,346 yards, 12 touchdowns and “zero interceptions.”
Tennessee had to replace offensive coordinator Alex Golesh, who was hired before the Orange Bowl as the new head coach at South Florida. Joey Halzle was promoted to coordinator, and Heupel returned everyone else on his coaching staff. Halzle also coaches quarterbacks.
The Vols set 15 school records with 599 total points and points per game along with 6,832 yards total offense, total touchdowns and fewest interceptions with three. Nothing is expected to change when Tennessee opens the season Sept. 2 hosting Virginia in Nashville.
“It’s Coach Heupel’s offense, so whatever he wants is going to get done that way,” Milton said. “I don’t see it no different being a change of offensive coordinators.”
WHY IS HAZING SUCH A WIDESPREAD PROBLEM? ABUSE PREVALENT DESPITE EFFORTS TO STOP IT
Northwestern University is facing multiple lawsuits after allegations that the football program had a hazing problem for years, including “forced participation, nudity and sexualized acts of a degrading nature.”
The scandal at the Big Ten school, which led to the firing of longtime coach Pat Fitzgerald, centers on a problem that extends far beyond sports, even if it is sports that often gets the headlines.
Studies have found that 48% high school students report being subjected to some form of hazing. An Alfred University study from 1999 also found that 79% of NCAA athletes reported being hazed in high school and their recruiting trips were not always about a positive experience: “One in five was subjected to unacceptable and potentially illegal hazing. They were kidnapped, beaten or tied up and abandoned. They were also forced to commit crimes – destroying property, making prank phone calls or harassing others,” the study found.
Experts say more, updated research is also needed.
Experts say hazing is about an individual or group exerting power and control over others.
“If you understand hazing as a form of an abuse of power, then you can see how in those environments or group situations where people are jockeying for power or trying to enforce some kind of hierarchies, hazing is an easy way to kind of make clear who’s got the power,” said Elizabeth Allan, a professor at the University of Main who has studied hazing.
Acts of hazing are frequently sexualized or can be classified as sexual assault. Allan said in a hyper-masculine situation that sexualized acts are often the most powerful ways for an individual or group to dominate others.
Susan Lipkins, a psychologist and researcher who studies hazing, said of sexualized hazing that it is “the quickest way to humiliate someone and to make them powerless.”
Lipkins said that while more research would be beneficial, she believes hazing incidents are becoming more frequent, severe and sexualized.
IT IS CYCLICAL
Hazing newcomers to a team or group can became so ritualistic and traditional that it seems normal to those in the group.
Some of the former Northwestern players who spoke out this week talked about the hazing they were subjected to early in their careers, and thinking that maybe this was just part of playing big-time college football.
“(T)he culture was so strong that we felt we had to go with it,” former player Lloyd Yates said. “There was a code of silence that felt insurmountable to break.”
“The abusive culture was especially devastating for many players of color,” Yates added. Many of them were the first in their family to attend college and football was their “ticket to a better life.”
“They had so much at stake and no voice or power to stop the abuse,” he said.
Those who have been hazed often want to carry on the tradition and do the hazing when they are in a position of power. As Allan put it: “This happened to me, therefore, that’s what we’re supposed to do and we’re not thinking beyond it.”
Vanderbilt coach Clark Lea said he doesn’t directly address hazing, but tries to create an environment where players trust coaches enough to come to them if they are having issues with the behavior of teammates.
“There’s no brotherhood that I know that starts with a level of abuse in the locker room,” Lea said.
WHAT IS HAZING:
Even in professional sports there is a tradition of putting the rookies in their place. A younger player might carry the equipment of an older player or be forced to pick up a big tab at dinner. Baseball has a tradition of rookies being forced to wear silly costumes on road trips late in the season.
Alone, these acts seem harmless because usually no one gets hurt and rarely is physical or psychological intimidation involved. Experts warn they still set a bad precedent.
“They send a message and create a dynamic where there are these expectations that some people have to do the grunt work, so to speak,” Allan said.
CAN HAZING BE PREVENTED?
Countless attemps have been made to stop hazing, from specific rules in schools and prep athletics to laws in 44 states that carry different forms of punishment. The NCAA provides specific guidance to stop hazing, though it leaves anti-hazing rules and punishments to its member schools and the federal Clery Act does not require colleges to report hazing incidents.
Former college football coach Gerry DiNardo, who led Vanderbilt, LSU and Indiana from the mid-1990s to early 2000s, said he actively discouraged hazing. DiNardo said he went so far as to make a team rule against joining fraternities that hazed their pledges.
Experts say that would be the most effective approach. Don’t avoid specific discussins about hazing.
“We need to have visible messaging around expectations for behavior, and that includes what we do not tolerate,” Allan said.
ACC COMMISSIONER JIM PHILLIPS SAYS HE NEVER CONDONED MISCONDUCT TOWARD ATHLETES AS NORTHWESTERN AD
(AP) — Atlantic Coast Conference commissioner Jim Phillips says he never “condoned or tolerated inappropriate conduct” against athletes as Northwestern’s athletics director in the wake of that school’s hazing scandal, which has led to at least three lawsuits and the firing of football coach Pat Fitzgerald.
Phillips has been named as a defendant for two of the lawsuits along with other university leaders in their oversight roles. The first complaint came Wednesday from a former football player identified as “John Doe 2,” followed by another as “John Doe 3” on Thursday.
“This has been a difficult time for the Northwestern University community, a place that my entire family called home,” Phillips said in a statement Thursday. “Over my 30-year career in intercollegiate athletics, my highest priority has always been the health and safety of all student-athletes.
“Hazing is completely unacceptable anywhere, and my heart goes out to anyone who carries the burden of having been mistreated. Any allegation that I ever condoned or tolerated inappropriate conduct against student-athletes is absolutely false. I will vigorously defend myself against any suggestion to the contrary.”
The John Doe plaintiffs who have named Phillips as a defendant were members of the football team from 2018-22, which overlaps the final years of Phillips’ tenure before replacing retiring John Swofford as ACC commissioner.
Each complaint alleges “longstanding issues involving hazing and bullying that takes on a sexual and/or racist tone” and accuses Fitzgerald of enabling “a culture of racism and/or other microaggressions” on the football team. Attorneys have said misconduct extended to other sports as well.
The first lawsuit was filed Tuesday by a former Northwestern football player, though that complaint didn’t name Phillips as a defendant.
The ACC will hold its preseason football media days next week in Charlotte. Phillips is scheduled to hold his annual commissioner’s forum Tuesday morning.
COLLEGE FOOTBALL PREVIEW: NORTH CAROLINA
2022 Record: 9-5 overall, 6-2 in ACC
Head Coach: Mack Brown, 5th year: 30-22, 35th year overall: 274-144-1
North Carolina won nine games.
Yes, it totally collapsed late with four straight losses to close things out, and yes, it lost at home to both Georgia Tech and North Carolina State. It also lost the ACC Championship – it was a 39-10 rocking by Clemson – but it got there, and the loss to Oregon in the Holiday Bowl was hardly bad.
It was still a four-game losing streak to close things out after a 9-1 start, and it was the third straight bowl loss under Brown, and there was a home loss to the rival, and …
With a horrible defense and a late power outage on offense, Mack Brown and North Carolina won nine games and was five points away from making that 12 wins.
Oh sure, a nine-win season back when Brown was rocking and rolling at Texas would’ve caused a meltdown, but for North Carolina football 2022 was the program’s second-best season since some Mack Brown guy was coaching there in 1997.
From the time Brown left for Texas until last year, North Carolina came up with a stunning 11-3 season in 2015. That was it for campaigns with more than eight wins over a 24-year span. And to go even further, over the last 41 seasons the program enjoyed just seven seasons with nine or more wins. Brown was responsible for five of them.
Brown will be 72 when the Tar Heels kick the ball off in Charlotte against South Carolina to start the season, and he might just have his best Tar Heel team yet. He can still recruit, he cranked it up in the transfer portal landing a few fantastic players, and most of all, he was able to keep around …
Drake Maye. There were some thoughts around the college football sewing circle that the superstar pro prospect – think a shorter Justin Herbert – might end up being Nick Saban’s starting quarterback. But no, he’s a Tar Heel.
The 6-4, 225-pounder who led the team in rushing with 698 yards and threw for 4,321 yards and 38 touchdowns with seven picks the best in the line of great UNC quarterbacks, and new offensive coordinator Chip Lindsey – who made his name as a top quarterback coach – should keep the production partially because …
The receiving corps is still going to be deadly. Josh Downs might be off catching passes from Anthony Richardson with the Indianapolis Colts, and No. 2 target Antoine Green is done, but everyone else is back including Bryson Nesbit and a loaded group of tight ends. Coming over from Kent State is Devontez Walker, a huge deep threat who caught 58 passes for 931 yards and 11 scores last year, and 60-catch Nate McCollum enters from Georgia Tech.
Can the O line give The Franchise time to work? Maye got hit way too much and too many plays were allowed behind the line, but there’s help on the way. Coastal Carolina’s Willie Lampkin is only 5-11 and 290 pounds, but he’s a top-shelf technician of a guard. C Corey Gaynor is an all-star talent, and there’s enough experience and size to play around with on the outside to get more production. And now …
The running backs need to do more. Maye might be great on the move, but 184 carries were way, way too many for a guy who needs to be put in bubble wrap until the 2024 NFL Draft. RB British Brooks is back after missing last year with a leg injury, Elijah Green returns coming off a 558-yard, eight-score season, and Caleb Hood will average over five yards per pop when he gets his chances.
The defense has one job – don’t be awful. The Tar Heels can score, and they won’t need to be Georgia-good defensively to have an amazing season. Under coordinator Gene Chizik they just can’t be dead freaking last again in the ACC in total and scoring D – allowing 437 yards and 31 points per game. There needs to be a pass rush. There needs to be a third down stop. And there needs to be a …
Pass defense. The two sort of went hand-in-hand. The lack of pressure made life way too hard on the defensive backs who allowed everyone to get fat stats. That’s why it’s not the end of the world to lose two pro prospect corners in Storm Duck (Louisville) and Tony Grimes (Texas A&M) with several new parts coming in.
CB Alijah Huzzie from East Tennessee State is a bear of a baller – 179 tackles with 12 picks and 30 broken up passes in four years – Armani Chatman from Virginia Tech is a veteran to rotate with Marcus Allen, and now the safeties should be stronger with Georgia State all-around tackling machine Antavious Lane – 223 stops with 11 picks in three years – about to be a factor.
Now the front seven has to do its job and start getting behind the line. There’s plenty of bulk and experience up front, but the production has to follow. Cedric Gray is among the best linebackers in college football – he did his part with a team-high 12 tackles for loss as part of his 146 stops – and Power Echols should push for more than 100 tackles again.
Drake Maye has to hit his throws. So what went wrong late last year? Teams figured it out – get to 10, stop the show.
Georgia Tech had a painfully inconsistent pass rush. It came up with a season-high six sacks in its upset win over the Tar Heels, who allowed 11 combined sacks their other four losses. That’s part of the reason why Maye was off with his accuracy.
North Carolina was 9-0 when Maye hit 63% or more of his throws and were 0-5 when connecting on fewer. BTW, South Carolina – this year’s opener – allowed just three offenses to get to the 60% passing mark last season.
North Carolina Tar Heels Top Transfer, Biggest Loss
WR Devontez Walker in from Kent State, CB Tony Grimes gone to Texas A&M. Yes, again, North Carolina had one of the nation’s worst pass defenses, and again, it’s bringing in some terrific new parts to help fix the glitch. Grimes and Storm Duck, though, really are talented. Grimes is the better of the two, and now he should shine as a starter for Jimbo Fisher’s secondary.
So the 6-3, 195-pound Tez Walker had a monster year at Kent State – whoopee, a great MAC player. Yeah, a great MAC player who hit Georgia for 106 yards and a score on seven catches and averaged 16 yards per grab last season. He might not be the volume guy Josh Downs was, but he’ll make big plays.
North Carolina Tar Heels Key Player
William Barnes, OT Sr. There are whole lot of key guys on that defense who need to step up, but the offensive line has to be far better, too. The interior should be fine, but this all improves if the 6-4, 320-pound Barnes can handle the work at left tackle. He was a guard and right tackle last year, but he has the size and experience to potentially shine in the spotlight job in place of new Dallas Cowboy Asim Richards.
BIPARTISAN TRIO OF SENATORS PROPOSE FEDERAL OVERSIGHT OF NIL COMPENSATION, ATHLETE HEALTH CARE
A bipartisan group of senators is working on a college sports bill that would pre-empt state laws and create national regulations for name, image and likeness compensation to players, establish an entity to oversee enforcement of those rules and fund long-term health care for athletes.
The College Athletes Protection & Compensation Act is only a discussion draft at this point, but notable in that both Democrats and Republicans are involved in trying to address issues that have disrupted college sports and the role of the NCAA.
Sens. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Cory Booker (D-N.J.) and Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) were scheduled to speak with reporters later Thursday about their efforts.
College sports leaders have been pleading for help from Congress to regulate how athletes can earn money off their fame since before the NCAA lifted its ban on NIL compensation in 2021.
With the NCAA beleaguered by losses in court, including a unanimous rebuke by the Supreme Court two years ago, the association has avoided implementing detailed rules to set a national standard for NIL. Meanwhile, a patchwork of state laws has created a muddled and uneven playing field for schools to try to compete.
Earlier this week, Southeastern Conference Commissioner Greg Sankey again said a federal law is a must for college sports to move forward.
“The reality is, only Congress can fully address the challenges facing college athletics,” he said at SEC media days.
NCAA President Charlie Baker, who has been spending much of his time meeting with lawmakers in Washington since moving into the position earlier this year, has said transparency and standardization with NIL is needed to protect athletes and their families.
The legislation would provide those through the creation of College Athletics Corp., a non-governmental oversight and enforcement agency. The CAC would provide certification for agents looking to represent college athletes and negotiate NIL contracts, and maintain a database of NIL deals. It also would have subpoena power to investigate potential violations, something the NCAA infractions staff does not have.
The new governing body would also establish a medical trust fund athletes could access during and after their careers. The fund would come from contributions by the NCAA and schools and conferences that earn at least $50 million in revenue per year.
Over the last four years, more than a dozen bills targeting NIL and college athletics have been proposed by federal lawmakers, including the College Athlete Bill of Rights by Booker, a former Stanford football player, and Blumenthal. Moran introduced the Amateur Athletes Protection and Compensation Act in 2021.
None of those proposals went anywhere.
FIELDS AIMING TO BREAK BEARS’ PASSING RECORD: ‘I PLAN ON DOING IT THIS YEAR’
The Chicago Bears have never had a quarterback throw for 4,000 yards in a single season in their 102-year history, but Justin Fields is confident he’ll surpass that mark.
“I will,” Fields told Bryant McFadden of CBS Sports when asked if he’ll accomplish the feat. “I plan on doing it this year, too.”
Erik Kramer holds the Bears’ single-season passing record when he threw for 3,838 yards in 1995. Chicago is the only franchise in the league not to have a 4,000-yard passer in a single season.
Fields threw for 2,242 yards in 15 games last campaign. The Bears ranked last in passing yards per contest, averaging only 130.5 per game.
But Chicago has made significant moves to help Fields become a better passer. The team added wide receiver Chase Claypool at last year’s trade deadline and acquired wide receiver D.J. Moore this offseason, who’s the best pass-catcher the Bears have rostered since Alshon Jeffery left in 2017.
Fields has struggled to get consistent production throwing the ball since entering the league, but he flashed his passing potential at Ohio State. He threw for 3,273 yards and 41 touchdowns in 2019 en route to finishing third in the Heisman Trophy voting.
The 24-year-old has 4,112 passing yards in 27 career NFL games.
CHIEFS HOPE LATEST ROOKIE CLASS CAN PRODUCE THE SAME WAY AS LAST YEAR’S BUNCH
ST. JOSEPH, Mo. (AP) — Rashee Rice spent every morning this past summer huddling with Shane Buechele, the former Texas quarterback-turned-backup to Patrick Mahomes, trying to get a grasp on the telephone book-thick playbook of Kansas City Chiefs coach Andy Reid.
Rice knows the Chiefs have high expectations for him after spending a second-round pick on him.
They’re even higher given how much their rookies produced last season.
It’s a good bet that, despite an MVP performance from Mahomes and more brilliance from Travis Kelce, Chris Jones and the rest of the Chiefs, they would not have hoisted another Lombardi Trophy last season without their group of first-year players.
Trent McDuffie, Jaylen Watson, Joshua Williams and Bryan Cook became regular playmakers in the secondary. George Karlaftis was one of their most reliable edge rushers. Skyy Moore made some important catches and one hugely important punt return in the Super Bowl. And seventh-round pick Isiah Pacheco not only became the starting running back but a bona fide star.
“We really had to slam dunk this thing from start to finish, and it was one of those years a GM dreams of,” Chiefs general manager Brett Veach acknowledged. “Just everything seemed like it would work out.”
Now it’s up to Rice and the rest of a new rookie class to do the same thing.
So, the wide receiver toiled away over the summer in the hopes of stepping into an important role for the Chiefs, who watched JuJu Smith-Schuster and Mecole Hardman leave in free agency and will be counting on him to pick up much of the slack.
“Like I said, meeting with Shane during our break gave me a head start just because he’s a quarterback, and he can’t really take a break,” Rice said. “Every day I’m going to be meeting with Shane in his dorm to go over plays before the next day.”
Rice isn’t the only rookie carrying some great expectations this season.
Felix Anudike-Uzomah, the Chiefs’ first-round pick, was always going to be in the spotlight given the fact that he grew up in suburban Kansas City and starred just down Interstate 70 at Kansas State.
But when the Chiefs lost Carlos Dunlap in free agency and released Frank Clark to create some much-needed salary cap space, it put some additional pressure on the gregarious and high-energy Anudike-Uzomah to produce in the same way that Karlaftis did as a rookie.
Anudike-Uzomah is already playing catch-up during training camp, which opened for rookies this week with the first full-squad workout scheduled for Sunday. He was coming off an injury and was limited during offseason work.
“It was very tough, especially since they drafted me to play me right away. They drafted me in the first round so all the coaches expected a lot out of me,” Anudike-Uzomah said following practice this week. “So it was very hard, very tough that I can’t do exactly what they want me to do right away. It was just a lot of mental reps, a lot of learning the playbook, a lot of knowing player technique even though I can’t do it on the field, I have to do it mentally.”
The urgency isn’t quite so great for the rest of the Chiefs’ rookie class.
They lost both of their starting offensive tackles in free agency, then filled the spots by signing veterans Jawaan Taylor and Donovan Smith. And that took some of the pressure off Wanya Morris, their third-round pick out of Oklahoma, though the hope is that he can develop into the swing tackle capable of playing both sides of the line if someone gets hurt.
Fourth-round pick Chamarri Conner and seven-rounder Nic Jones, meanwhile, can thank last year’s superb rookie class that solidified the Kansas City defensive backfield for their ability to slowly get acclimated to the professional game.
All the rookies have had the undivided attention of the coaching staff until the veterans report Friday.
“I think it’s great for the young guys. I think it’s good for the older guys just to get tuned up, they know what it takes to get themselves ready for the season. This is a way to knock a little rust off,” Reid said, “but for the young guys I think it’s even more beneficial. And it’s also beneficial for the coaches to see the young guys and see what they can do.”
NOTES: Pacheco said after Thursday’s practice that he will be ready for the season opener. He missed most of the offseason program after repairing a broken hand and torn labrum, which he played with during the Super Bowl. “I’m feeling great right now,” said Pacheco, adding that his goal for this season is to eclipse 1,000 yards rushing.
CHIEFS RB ISIAH PACHECO SAYS HE WILL BE READY FOR WEEK 1
Kansas City Chiefs running back Isiah Pacheco said Thursday that he “absolutely” expects to be ready for Week 1 despite undergoing a pair of offseason surgeries.
“I’m feeling great right now,” said Pacheco, who played in Super Bowl LVII with a torn labrum and a broken hand.
“It’s just a process. It takes time and for me to just continue to listen to the staff and trust myself.”
Pacheco, 24, has been wearing a yellow non-contact jersey during training camp practices.
“Whenever coaches allow me to play, and when he (head coach Andy Reid) says I’m good to go — that’s when I’m going to go out there and show,” Pacheco said.
Pacheco rose from a seventh-round pick in the 2022 draft to starting for the Super Bowl champs. He started 11 of 17 games and ran for 830 yards with five touchdowns and added 130 receiving yards.
CHIEFS NOT EXPECTING DT CHRIS JONES AT CAMP WITHOUT CONTRACT
Members of the Kansas City Chiefs front office are not peeking around dormitories at Missouri Western State for defensive tackle Chris Jones, whose contract standoff with the team will likely span the team’s two-week training camp or beyond.
Jones is entering the final year of his contract as the defensive tackle market continues to spike upward. That includes the four-year, $96 million deal signed by Jets defensive tackle Quinnen Williams.
Jones had a pass-rush win rate of 21 percent, best in the NFL at the position, last season.
Chiefs head coach Andy Reid said this week there is ongoing dialogue with Jones’ camp related to his contract.
“That’s the important part. And we just have to see,” Reid said.
Jones, a four-time Pro Bowl selection, signed a four-year, $80 million contract in July 2020. He’s scheduled to take home a base salary of $19.5 million in 2023. The 28-year-old can earn $500,000 for a workout bonus and a $1.25 million incentive bonus if he records 10 sacks this season.
The defensive tackle market is rising rapidly this offseason.
Jeffery Simmons (Tennessee Titans) signed a four-year, $94 million deal that falls just $1 million short of the full four-year value of Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald’s existing contract. Washington Commanders defensive tackle Daron Payne (four years, $90M) and Dexter Lawrence of the New York Giants (four years, $87.5M) also jumped Jones among highest-paid DTs.
Reid called Jones’ contract “well deserved” in 2020.
With Jones in the fold, Kansas City has the potential to start 10 homegrown defensive players in 2023, with free safety Justin Reid the lone player drafted by another team.
FOR JETS, AARON RODGERS ‘EVERYTHING’S DIFFERENT’ IN 2023
A new shade of green for Aaron Rodgers means a major shift for the New York Jets.
What’s different for the team with the former Packers quarterback and four-time MVP in the building? The easier question to answer might be: What’s not?
“He’s a coach that can still play football,” Jets coach Robert Saleh said Thursday on the second day of training camp with Rodgers in the fold. “He’s very observant. He’s watching everything. He’s very connected. And not just to his teammates and coaches, but with everybody, and that includes the people upstairs, the chef, equipment guys. He’s a world-class human.”
The Jets moved to Rodgers, acquired via trade from the Packers, and demoted former top draft pick Zach Wilson. Wilson was benched last season but kept on the team while he “learns to be an NFL quarterback,” a message Saleh repeated Thursday.
Rodgers as QB1 for the Jets raised expectations and energy for players of all ages, including multiple former teammates and coaches who also came to New York.
Cornerback D.J. Reed said there is a different feel in 2023, and it has a lot to do with the quarterback.
“Not gonna lie, the energy just feels different,” Reed said. “We got Aaron Rodgers. We got some of our main guys back. We just signed (defensive tackle) Quinnen Williams.”
Rodgers’ goals for 2023 go beyond boosting energy in Jersey.
“You want to be part of a place that has high expectations. There’s a lot of positivity around here, which is a good thing,” Rodgers said Thursday. “With all the positivity comes people trying to knock you down a little bit. … We’ve got to handle it the right way.”
He turns 40 in December, when the Jets hope to be chasing the AFC East division title and fighting for home-field advantage. But Rodgers said he’s learned to practice patience, and shared that message with second-year receiver Garrett Wilson and others on the field.
“We’ve got to temper expectations, focus on the little things. There’s a lot of excitement. That is fun,” Rodgers said. “If we want to be playing in January, we’ve got to be consistent throughout the season.”
After almost two decades reporting to the 1265 Lombardi address for training camp, Rodgers said “everything’s different 19 years in” since showing up at 1 Jets Drive.
“We’re just building this thing right now,” Rodgers said. “We’re building it the right way. … When it comes to ball, there’s a right way to do things and a way that could slow us down.”
Wide receiver Allen Lazard, who signed with the Jets after being Rodgers’ teammate in Green Bay, noticed another familiar face at the team facility: offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett. Hackett enters his first year as the Jets’ play-caller but is highly synchronized with Rodgers from their time together with the Packers.
Lazard said the offense Hackett installed wasn’t the Packers’ system. “This is the Aaron Rodgers offense,” he said Thursday. “The entire playbook is open at any given time.”
The Rodgers Effect has grabbed hold for veterans, too, including inside linebacker C.J. Mosley. The 31-year-old elder statesman of the defense noted “Hard Knocks” cameras aren’t the biggest difference in camp.
“Obviously we have a big name in Aaron Rodgers here,” Mosley said. “You can kind of feel a lot of screws and bolts kind of tighten up, but that’s expected with the name and the weight that he carries. Everybody’s excited from top to bottom — coaches, players, and you can talk to anybody in the building and everybody’s going to have the same mindset and excitement.”
REPORT: LIONS RELEASING K MICHAEL BADGLEY
The Detroit Lions are releasing kicker Michael Badgley, NFL Network reported on Thursday.
Badgley, 27, kicked in one game with the Chicago Bears last season and 12 more with Detroit. He re-signed in March with the Lions, who also traded for Riley Patterson and signed fellow kicker John Parker Romo.
Badgley made 24 of 28 field-goal attempts and all 33 extra-point tries last season. He has converted 94 of 115 field-goal attempts and 155 of 160 extra-point tries in 60 games with the Los Angeles Chargers (2018-20), Indianapolis Colts (2021), Tennessee Titans (2021), Bears (2022) and Lions.
Patterson, 23, made 30 of 35 field-goal attempts and 36 of 37 PATs last season for the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Romo, 25, played last season for the San Antonio Brahmas of the XFL.
BENGALS TO INDUCT BOOMER ESIASON, CHAD JOHNSON INTO RING OF HONOR
Quarterback Boomer Esiason and wide receiver Chad Johnson will be inducted into the Bengals’ Ring of Honor during Cincinnati’s Sept. 25 “Monday Night Football” game with the Los Angeles Rams.
They’ll join Ken Anderson, Willie Anderson, Paul Brown, Isaac Curtis, Anthony Munoz and Ken Riley in the club.
“Boomer and Chad were both exceptional players,” Bengals president Mike Brown said Thursday. “If you look at the statistics, Boomer has a long list of quarterback firsts here. And Chad was a superb athlete who was probably the quickest receiver we have had here. They could have moments when they just carried the team by themselves. Both players are very deserving of this honor.”
Esiason (1984-92, ’97) was NFL MVP in 1988 and led the Bengals to a Super Bowl XXIII appearance while making the Pro Bowl three times.
“I will always remember I got this because of the season ticket holders,” said Esiason, underscoring the voting from season ticket holders from a ballot of 13. “They’re the ones who have the memories. They’re the ones who spend the money to support the team. They’re the ones who know who their favorite players are and who had the biggest impact when they were there. That’s not to be taken lightly or ever taken for granted.”
Johnson, also known as “Ochocinco,” is one of the most popular players in franchise history, an energetic and charismatic presence on the field and social media. In his 10 seasons in Cincinnati (2001-10), Johnson became the franchise’s all-time leading receiver with 10,783 yards.
“It means everything,” said Johnson, a six-time Pro Bowl selection. “To be shown appreciation for all the years of hard work is awesome. It’s a great honor and I’m very appreciative. I’m getting my flowers now while I can smell them. To me, this honor means much more than getting a gold jacket, honestly. This is home.”
NFL PREVIEW: CINCINNATI
This might finally be the year that the Bengals capture a Super Bowl title for Cincinnati.
With quarterback Joe Burrow leading the charge, the Bengals have a loaded roster with Pro Bowlers on both sides of the football, including wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase and edge rusher Trey Hendrickson.
It might finally be time for the Bengals given their biggest rivals, the Chiefs, won the Super Bowl last season, and the league hasn’t had a repeat champion in nearly two decades.
But Kansas City can never be counted out, and the Bengals have plenty of other teams to worry about, with the Bills, Jets, Dolphins, Jaguars, Ravens and Chargers also expected to be in the mix.
Burrow, who might be just as good as the Chiefs’ Patrick Mahomes, has plenty of help in Cincinnati. The team didn’t settle this offseason, making a splash move in free agency by acquiring left tackle Orlando Brown Jr.
Biggest gamble this offseason: Signing Orlando Brown Jr.
One of the biggest surprises from this past offseason was the Chiefs allowing Brown to leave and sign with the Bengals, who likely weren’t expecting the top free-agent left tackle to be available. (Brown signed a four-year, $64 million deal with $43.5 million guaranteed.) The Bengals had the right idea upgrading Burrow’s offensive line, but there might be a few red flags with this signing. The Chiefs weren’t willing to meet Brown’s contract demands, perhaps because they viewed him more as a system fit than as an elite left tackle.
It also doesn’t bode well that Brown had to let potential suitors know he wasn’t interested in playing right tackle. Jonah Williams asked for a trade after the Bengals told him he was moving from left tackle to right tackle this season, but Williams changed his tune last month and participated in the team’s minicamp. With him on board, it might have been the right move to bet on Brown as a top left tackle, giving Burrow with quality bookend tackles.
Toughest stretch of the season: Weeks 6 to 9
The Bengals have a tough six games against AFC North opponents—the Ravens, Steelers and Browns all appear to be playoff contenders. But the Bengals’ toughest stretch of the season doesn’t include divisional opponents. In Week 6, the Bengals host the Seahawks, who have a loaded team after adding first-round picks Devon Witherspoon and Jaxon Smith-Njigba. After a bye week, the Bengals play on the road against the 49ers, arguably the best team in the NFC. To conclude the rugged three-game stretch, NFL fans get Burrow vs. Josh Allen when the Bills travel to Cincinnati.
Breakout player to watch: Safety Dax Hill
Hill had somewhat of a redshirt rookie season after only starting two games and playing 14% percent of defensive snaps in 2022. He’s expected to play a lot more in his second season with Jessie Bates III and Vonn Bell leaving in free agency. In his limited snaps, Hill flashed as a versatile playmaker, playing in the box and slot. His rare speed (he ran a 4.38 in the 40-yard dash) and ability to play in a variety of coverages made him a first-round draft pick out of Michigan. Hill recorded 16 total tackles and 1 quarterback hit during 130 defensive snaps as a rookie.
Position of strength: Wide receiver
The Bengals might have the best receiving trio in the league with Chase, Tee Higgins and Tyler Boyd. Chase quickly established himself as a star receiver during his rookie season in 2021, but his numbers declined a bit last year (87 catches, 1,046 yards and nine touchdowns) after missing five games with a hip injury. On most teams, 6’4″ Higgins would be a No. 1 target; he’s recorded more than 1,000 receiving yards over the past two seasons. And finally, the Bengals believe they would have beaten the Chiefs if Boyd never got hurt in the AFC championship game—that’s how valuable the last part of their trio is.
Position of weakness: Secondary
Hill could have a breakout season, but the safeties might have to go through an adjustment period with Bates and Bell gone. Nick Scott, who played with the Rams the past four seasons, is penciled in to start next to Hill. Cornerback Chidobe Awuzie is recovering from an ACL tear and only played in eight games last season. The inexperienced Cam Taylor-Britt is expected to start opposite Awuzie. If Taylor-Britt struggles to find his footing, the Bengals could also turn to DJ Turner II, the team’s 2023 second-round pick.
X-factor: RB Chase Brown
Brown, a fifth-round pick this year, could be thrust into a starting role for his rookie season if the Bengals decide to cut veteran Joe Mixon, who has a cap hit of $12.79 million. Regardless of how the Mixon situation develops before training camp, the Bengals are going to need Brown to fill the void of Samaje Perine, the versatile No. 2 running back who left to sign with the Broncos in free agency. Brown rushed for 1,643 yards and 10 touchdowns during his final season with Illinois.
Sleeper fantasy pick: TE Irv Smith Jr.
Smith has been a fantasy sleeper in the past, but he’s never met expectations. He’s now landed in a good spot with the Bengals, in an explosive offense that will score a ton of points. Smith could turn into a nice late-round, matchup-based No. 2 tight end in drafts. —Michael Fabiano, SI Fantasy
Best bet: Take the over on Joe Burrow’s 33.5 passing TDs
Burrow threw 34 passing TDs in 2021 and 35 in ’22, and he could throw even more this season with the division-rival Ravens and Browns expected to be competitive. Burrow will give Mahomes a run for his money for MVP this season. —Jennifer Piacenti, SI Betting
Final record: 14–3, first in AFC North
NEW ZEALAND OPENS WOMEN’S WORLD CUP WITH A 1-0 UPSET OVER NORWAY ON EMOTIONAL 1ST DAY IN HOST NATION
AUCKLAND, New Zealand (AP) — On a day that started with tragedy, the Football Ferns triumphed.
Hannah Wilkinson scored to open the second half and New Zealand went on to upset Norway 1-0 on Thursday for its first-ever win at the Women’s World Cup, hours after a shooting in downtown Auckland shocked the host nation.
A gunman stormed a high-rise construction site near Norway’s team hotel and opened fire, killing two people. The gunman was found dead after a police shootout.
There was increased security at Eden Park stadium, where 42,137 — a record crowd for a soccer match in New Zealand — were on hand to cheer on the home team, co-hosts of the tournament with Australia. New Zealand Prime Minister Chris Hipkins was among those at the game. He went into the locker room after the game and thanked the team for an inspirational performance.
After an opening ceremony that honored New Zealand’s Indigenous heritage, there was a moment of silence for the victims of the shooting. Five people were wounded in the attack, including a police officer.
New Zealand’s Football Ferns had played in five previous World Cups, but hadn’t won a match.
“We really wanted to inspire young girls across the nation and I think we did that tonight. We showed that anything is possible,” said captain Ali Riley, who had happy tears in her eyes.
Norway couldn’t finish off its chances in the first half while the Ferns defended well. Ada Hegerberg’s attempt in the 37th minute was deftly defended by Rebekah Stott and the match was scoreless after the first half.
The first woman to win the prestigious Ballon d’Or award, Hegerberg has 43 goals in 77 international appearances. Currently playing professionally for Lyon, she has scored a record 59 goals in the Champions League. But she couldn’t find the back of the net in Auckland.
Instead, Wilkinson scored in the opening moments of the second half. Jaqui Hand moved up the right side and placed a perfect cross at Wilkinson’s feet for the goal. While the home crowd wildly celebrated, Norway goalkeeper Aurora Mikalson stood with her hands on her hips.
Norway won the World Cup in 1995. At the last tournament in 2019, the team fell to England in the quarterfinals. At the Women’s Euro in 2022, England routed the Norwegians 8-0. In the run-up to this game, winger Caroline Graham Hansen called the World Cup a chance to “start fresh.”
“(It’s) the opening game, they are the hosts. We have talked about this. We knew they were going to go out there and be aggressive,” Norway midfielder Guro Reiten said. “We knew exactly how they wanted to play but still, we were so poor, especially in that first half. I’m very disappointed.”
Tuva Hansen nearly tied it for Norway in the 83rd but her shot caromed off the crossbar. The Ferns had a chance to double their lead in the 89th after video review awarded them a penalty, but Ria Percival’s attempt hit the post.
Stoppage time stretched for more than 10 minutes before the whistle blew and New Zealand’s bench rushed the field in celebration. Riley pounded her chest for the electrified fans.
“It’s really hard to put into words, but absolutely surreal,” Ferns defender Katie Bowen said of the droughtbreaking victory. “I mean we made history tonight, but we can’t rest on that. Our goal is to get out of the group.”
Bowen said she was awakened by an early morning call from her brother, checking if she was OK after hearing about the Auckland shooting.
“I think everyone was just pretty taken aback, because this doesn’t really happen in New Zealand,” Bowen said. “But I think, especially on a game day, down to just each individual doing what they needed to do to process it and make sure they could focus on the game at the same time.”
New Zealand got the nod to stage the World Cup’s first game, although co-host Australia’s match against Ireland in Sydney started about an hour after fulltime in Auckland.
Considered the favorites in Group A, the Norwegians went into the game 5-1-1 all-time against New Zealand, with the only loss coming in a 2019 exhibition match.
Norway coach Hege Riise said her players were not impacted by the shooting, despite the incident happened near their hotel.
“We knew it was under control, we felt safe. Some players slept through it,” Riise said. “We had an early morning meeting with everyone. It hasn’t had an effect on how we performed in the game.”
New Zealand had struggled in the run-up to the tournament on home soil, with just one win in its last 11 matches.
The two teams had met just once before at the World Cup: Norway beat the Ferns 4-0 in 1991.
Group A play continues Friday with Switzerland playing the Philippines in Dunedin. New Zealand’s next match is Tuesday against the Philippines in Wellington, while Norway plays Switzerland in Hamilton. The top two teams in the group will advance to the knockout stage.
WWC: SAVED PENALTY LEADS NIGERIA TO DRAW WITH CANADA
Chiamaka Nnadozie saved a penalty kick by Canadian captain Christine Sinclair in the 50th minute, and Nigeria emerged with a surprising 0-0 draw against Canada on Friday at the Women’s World Cup in Melbourne, Australia.
The game was the opener for both teams in Group B. Australia tops the group after beating the Republic of Ireland 1-0 on Thursday.
Canada, which captured the gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics in 2021, is ranked seventh in the world by FIFA. Nigeria is ranked 40th.
Nigeria ended the game with 10 players after Deborah Abiodun received a red card deep in second-half stoppage time for a late, high challenge on the shin of Ashley Lawrence.
The key moment in the game came early in the second half. After a video review, Francisca Ordega was ruled to have fouled Sinclair in the penalty area. Nnadozie dived to her left and knocked away Sinclair’s low penalty kick.
Sinclair, 40, was attempting to become the first player — male or female — ever to score in six World Cup tournaments. She is the all-time leader — male or female — in international goals with 190.
WEEKEND PREVIEW: POCONO RACEWAY
With six races remaining to set the 16-driver 2023 NASCAR Cup Series Playoff field, the summer race season has provided plenty of compelling action both atop the championship standings and around that important 16th place cutoff position.
There are 11 drivers locked into the Playoffs with five positions still to be settled in this next month and a half.
The NASCAR Cup Series visits four tracks for the first time this season in the remaining six-race span to set the postseason field, including Sunday’s HighPoint.com 400 at Pocono (Pa.) Raceway (2:30 p.m. ET on USA Network, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).
With a victory — his third of the season — last week at New Hampshire, Joe Gibbs Racing driver Martin Truex Jr. arrives in Pocono with a 17-point advantage over Hendrick Motorsports’ William Byron in the regular season standings.
A rough day in New England for Richard Childress Racing’s Kyle Busch, he finished last after an early-race single-car incident, has shuffled the upper portion of the points standings. Busch went into the weekend ranked second, only 36 points off Byron’s then-leading pace. But now the two-time series champion has fallen to fifth, 74 points behind Truex.
Among the top five drivers in the standings — Truex, Byron, Christopher Bell, Denny Hamlin and Busch — all but Byron and Bell have previous wins at the 2.5-mile “Tricky Triangle” as the three-turn Pocono Raceway is called.
Joe Gibbs Racing’s Denny Hamlin is tied with NASCAR Hall of Famer Jeff Gordon for the most Pocono wins — establishing his excellence at the track immediately with a sweep of the two Pocono races in his 2006 rookie season. It looked as if Hamlin would have the record all to himself after crossing the finish line first in last year’s Pocono race, but both he and then-teammate Busch — who finished runner-up — were disqualified after the race for technical violations, giving the victory to third-place finisher Chase Elliott.
Elliott, driver of the No. 9 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet, still bristles at being called “the winner” from that race, but a victory there this weekend sure would go a long way toward turning his 2023 fortunes. After missing five races with injury and another for an aggressive driving penalty, the 2020 NASCAR Cup Series champion finds himself well outside the top-16 heading to Pocono — a full 60 points behind Michael McDowell in that final 16th place Playoff position.
Elliott has four top-five and eight top-10 finishes in 13 Pocono starts. Before he was awarded the victory last summer, his previous best finish had been fourth place (2016, ’19 and ’20).
Closer to the cutoff line, 15th-place Bubba Wallace holds a slight two-point edge on 17th-place Daniel Suarez. McDowell has only a single point up on the Trackhouse Racing driver Suarez. Kaulig Racing driver A.J. Allmendinger is ranked 18th, 20 points behind McDowell.
Rookie Ty Gibbs is only 31 points out of a Playoff position in what has been a quiet, steady, successful opening season for the defending NASCAR Xfinity Series champion. He’s had five top-10 finishes this season — three ninth-place showings his best to date. He made his NASCAR Cup Series debut at Pocono last year, substituting for injured 23XI Racing driver Kurt Busch, and finished 16th.
“It’s really cool for us and being a rookie, it’s really special to run up front and having a chance to run for the Playoffs,” said Gibbs, who drives the No. 54 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota. “Just need to have a couple good weeks and we’ll be back in it, hopefully and be able to go and race for a win and that will take care of all that.”
“I think I’ve had a good experience at almost all the upcoming tracks except the speedways and so I’m happy about that. I enjoy Pocono, Michigan and Richmond. I’m excited for them and hopefully we can knock off a win.”
There are 10 Pocono race winners in this week’s field, including Hamlin, Kyle Busch (four) and Truex (two) who are multi-race winners. Elliott, Alex Bowman, Kevin Harvick, Ryan Blaney, Brad Keselowski, Chris Buescher and reigning NASCAR Cup Series champion Joey Logano all have a trophy too.
Among those, only Bowman and Elliott are currently outside the top-16 in the Playoff standings. Bowman missed three races recovering from a concussion and sits 20th in the standings, 42 points behind McDowell.
Practice for the HighPoint.com 400 is scheduled for 2:35 p.m. ET on Saturday with Busch Light Pole Qualifying following at 3:20 p.m. — both sessions airing on USA Network at 3 p.m. ET.
–NASCAR Xfinity Series’ streak of different winners at Pocono could continue
Historically speaking the NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Pocono Raceway is anybody’s to win. In seven races at the 2.5-mile oval, there have been seven different winners. The only previous winner in Saturday’s field is Stewart-Haas Racing’s Cole Custer, who hoisted a trophy there in 2019.
A victory in Saturday’s Explore the Pocono Mountains 225 (5:30 p.m. ET on USA Network, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) represents a championship Playoff ticket for someone since only seven of the 12 Playoff positions have already been filled.
With his victory last week at New Hampshire, John Hunter Nemechek has extended his career best single season win total to four and he leads three-race winner Austin Hill by 33 points and one-race winner Justin Allgaier by 60 points in the standings. Nemechek has one top-10 — a seventh place in 2018 — in two series starts at Pocono. Hill also has a pair of starts at the track with a best effort of eighth place last year.
It may be Custer — who sits fourth in the championship standings — that everyone needs to keep an eye on. He has never finished worse than 10th in four starts at Pocono. Another driver with not only an impressive history at Pocono, but some extra motivation to score his first win in more than a year is Kaulig Racing’s Daniel Hemric. The 2021 series champion has not won a race since his title-clinching win at Phoenix in that season finale. He has four top-10 finishes in five Pocono starts.
Another driver still racing for his first win of the season — and the automatic Playoff berth — is JR Motorsports’ Josh Berry. He has a pair of top-10 finishes in two Pocono starts, including a third place run last year.
Custer’s SHR teammate Riley Herbst currently holds that all-important 12th place in the driver standings, only 18 points ahead of Parker Kligerman who will be making his Pocono debut this weekend.
NASCAR Cup Series regular and 2016 NASCAR Xfinity Series champion, Daniel Suarez will drive the No. 10 Kaulig Racing Chevrolet this weekend. He’s earned top-10 finishes in both his previous Xfinity Series starts at the track.
Custer will similarly be competing in two Pocono races. He’s driving the No. 51 Rick Ware Racing Ford in the NASCAR Cup Series race on Sunday in addition to his Xfinity Series duties.
Cars roll off for practice on Friday at 3:35 p.m. ET followed by Pole Qualifying at 4:05 p.m. ET — both sessions televised on USA Network and streamed on the NBC Sports App.
–NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series drivers have just two chances left to make the Playoffs
The NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series returns to action after an off-week and now only two races remain to set the 10-driver Playoff field, so Saturday afternoon’s CRC Brakleen 150 (Noon ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) could go a long way to formalizing the championship field.
No current full-time series driver has won this Pocono race, however six drivers in Saturday’s field have won in an ARCA Menards Series race at the track — including championship leader Corey Heim, his closest regular season championship challenger Zane Smith, as well as Christian Eckes, Ty Majeski, Grant Enfinger and Taylor Gray.
The regular season title is still very much up for grabs in this final two race swing before the Playoffs. The two-race winner Heim holds a 26-point edge on reigning series champion and fellow-two race winner Smith in what is essentially a two-driver duel for the extra 15-point Playoff bonus awarded the Regular Season Champion.
The other drivers with secure Playoff positions include 2023 race winners Eckes, Enfinger, Carson Hocevar and 2021 champion Ben Rhodes. Majeski, Matt DiBenedetto, rookie Nick Sanchez and three-time series champion Matt Crafton hold the remaining Playoff positions as of now.
Stewart Friesen is only 1-point behind Crafton and 2-points behind Sanchez however, and Gray is 24-points behind Crafton for that 10th place transfer.
NASCAR Cup Series regulars Kyle Busch, Christopher Bell and Ross Chastain will compete in Saturday’s race. Busch is the only driver to win multiple Truck Series races at Pocono (in 2015 and 2018) and his 148 laps led at Pocono is most in series history. This weekend, the two-time NASCAR Cup Series champion is hoping to earn a milestone 100th victory for his Kyle Busch Motorsports truck team.
Practice will take place Friday beginning at 1:35 p.m. ET, immediately followed by qualifying. Both sessions will air on FS1.
F NATE THOMPSON RETIRES AFTER 15 SEASONS WITH NINE TEAMS
Journeyman forward Nate Thompson retired after 15 seasons with nine NHL teams.
Thompson, 38, who last played for the Philadelphia Flyers in 2021-22, confirmed his decision via social media.
“From the time I was four until 38 hockey has been my life and best friend. I’m beyond grateful and thankful for all the great people I’ve met and friendships I’ve made,” he posted on Twitter. “All good things must come to an end so thank you to all who supported me along this journey.”
Thompson recorded 164 points (65 goals, 99 assists) and 401 penalty minutes in 844 games. He added 21 points (eight goals, 13 assists) in 86 career playoff games.
Drafted by the Boston Bruins in the sixth round in 2003, the Alaska native also played for the New York Islanders, Tampa Bay Lightning, Anaheim Ducks, Ottawa Senators, Los Angeles Kings, Montreal Canadiens, Winnipeg Jets and Flyers.
REPORT: THUNDER WAIVE VETERAN F RUDY GAY
The Oklahoma City Thunder waived forward Rudy Gay, The Athletic reported.
The 17-year NBA veteran, who turns 37 in August, will become a free agent if he goes unclaimed.
Gay averaged 5.2 points and 2.9 rebounds in 56 games off the Utah Jazz bench last season.
He has career averages of 15.8 points and 5.6 boards in 1,120 games with five teams.
Gay was traded from the Jazz to the Atlanta Hawks on July 7, then flipped to the Thunder on July 12.
ACES BEAT STORM, MATCH WNBA’S BEST 22-GAME START
A’ja Wilson recorded 23 points, 15 rebounds and three blocked shots to help the Las Vegas Aces notch a 79-63 victory over the host Seattle Storm on Thursday night.
Jackie Young added 22 points and eight rebounds and Kelsey Plum had 20 points and six assists as Las Vegas won its fourth straight game. The Aces (20-2) also tied the 1998 Houston Comets and 2016 Los Angeles Sparks for the best 22-game starts in WNBA history.
Las Vegas is 3-0 against Seattle this season, winning by an average of 30 points.
Jewell Loyd scored a season-low 12 points on 3-of-13 shooting for the Storm (4-17). Loyd entered the contest with a league-best 25.7 scoring average.
Ezi Magbegor had 12 points, seven rebounds and three blocked shots, and Jordan Horston added 11 points for Seattle, which lost its eighth straight game. The Storm fell to 2-10 at home.
Las Vegas shot 43.9 percent from the field and was 7 of 18 from 3-point range.
Seattle shot 38.7 percent, including 7 of 26 from 3-point range.
Las Vegas led by 11 at halftime then used an 8-0 run early in the half to take a 47-30 lead. Young hit two treys during the run and Plum capped it with a layup with 8:04 left in the third quarter.
The Aces had another 8-0 burst later in the quarter as Young nailed a trey, Wilson converted a layup and Alysha Clark hit a 3-pointer to make it 60-36 with 3:09 left in the period.
Seattle exploded with a 19-2 burst, however, including a quarter-ending 10-2 burst. Loyd ended the third quarter with a 3-pointer with 55.8 seconds remaining to bring the Storm within 62-46.
Seattle continued its run with nine straight points to open the final stanza. Horston scored four in a row, Mercedes Russell made a layup and Sami Whitcomb buried a 3-pointer to bring Seattle within 62-55 with 6:36 remaining.
But Plum and Young made baskets 24 seconds apart as Las Vegas pushed the lead back into double digits.
Wilson’s basket with 3:03 left gave the Aces a 74-59 lead en route to closing out the win.
Young and Plum each scored 11 first-half points as the Aces led 39-28 at the break.
MERCURY DOWN SKY FOR FIRST WIN STREAK OF SEASON
Shey Peddy scored 11 of her game-high 20 points to lead a surge midway through the second half as the host Phoenix Mercury defeated the Chicago Sky 80-62 on Thursday night.
Brittney Griner added 12 points and 11 rebounds, Megan Gustafson scored 12 and Sug Sutton had 11 for the Mercury (6-15). Phoenix won a second straight game for the first time this season despite playing without Diana Taurasi, who had quad and toe injuries.
Kahleah Copper scored 17 points to lead the Sky (8-13), whose bench was outscored 45-19 by its counterparts. Chicago took its fourth loss in a row.
Sophie Cunningham and Michaela Onyenwere made consecutive 3-pointers as the Mercury increased their 10-point halftime lead to 19 early in the third quarter.
Copper scored eight points and Dana Evans added four during a 19-2 run that pulled the Sky within 52-50.
Peddy made a 3-pointer to end a 3 1/2-minute scoring drought for Phoenix, and she added another 3-pointer less than a minute later to give the Mercury a 58-50 lead at the end of the third quarter.
She stayed hot, scoring Phoenix’s first five points of the fourth quarter, and Griner added two free throws to push the lead to 13 as the Mercury regained control.
Chicago, which hadn’t played since an 84-72 home loss to the Connecticut Sun on July 12, started very slowly on offense.
Eight Mercury players made a field goal during the first seven minutes as Phoenix opened a 19-5 lead.
Ruthy Hebard made one of two free throws to end a nearly five-minute scoring drought for the Sky, and Evans’ layup ended a six-minute field-goal drought, trimming Phoenix’s lead to 22-8 at the end of the first quarter.
Chicago’s Robyn Parks made a jumper to start the second-quarter scoring. Almost five minutes later, Onyenwere’s 3-pointer gave the Mercury their biggest lead of the half, 33-16.
Elizabeth Williams and Copper scored five points each as the Sky finished with a 14-7 run that cut Phoenix’s lead to 40-30 at halftime.
PAULA RETO, AMELIA LEWIS CHARGE TO LEAD AT LPGA TEAM EVENT
Paula Reto of South Africa and Amelia Lewis teamed up for a 9-under-par 61 on Thursday to take the 36-hole lead at the Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational at Midland Country Club in Midland, Mich.
The tandem is atop the leaderboard at 14-under 126, one shot better than two pairings: Jodi Ewart Shadoff of England and Emma Talley (second-round 60), and Matilda Castren of Finland and Kelly Tan of Malaysia (63).
The 72-hole event features teams consisting of two players. Alternate shot is used during the first and third rounds, while the second and final rounds are played using a four-ball format.
Reto’s eagle 2 at the fifth hole was an early turning point.
“I hit a little shot to the right,” Reto said. “Everyone else was in the fairway. I was like, ‘It’s OK.’ I got a good little line open to the flag. I was, like, 10 yards. The wind was helping, so I hit one club less, and I hit it really strong, nice. OK, it’s going to be close, and then, bang, one hop and then in the hole.
“So I was like, ‘OK, this could be the start of the birdie train.’”
She was right: Seven of their eight total birdies came after that pivotal moment.
Reto won on the LPGA Tour for the first time last August at the Canadian Women’s Open. Lewis, meanwhile, is ranked No. 923 in the world, has played on and off since her rookie season in 2011 and is making just her second start of the year.
“It feels great,” Lewis said of leading a tournament. “I’ve been playing great golf all year, so it’s nice to see that up top and have a partner that’s been there before, too, kind of guiding me.”
Shadoff and Talley teamed up for 10 birdies and no bogeys, starting the round with a 6-under 29 on the back nine.
“We got on a roll really early on. We seemed to have birdies on opposite holes, so that really helps,” Shadoff said. “When we weren’t having such good holes, we were there for each other with pars or birdies. So it was a real team effort, I think.”
Castren and Tan led after Wednesday’s first round and are still in the mix after a bogey-free 63 with seven birdies. The duo finished runners-up at this event last year.
“I’m not, like, looking back into last year that much,” Castren said. “Obviously it’s a new year and new week for us on the same course, but just trying to play our best games.”
France’s Celine Boutier and Japan’s Yuka Saso shot a 63 to secure fourth place at 12 under. Celine Borge of Norway and Polly Mack of Germany (64) are fifth at 11 under.
Notable teams that missed the cut of 3 under par include Lexi Thompson and Canada’s Brooke M. Henderson (65 on Thursday, 2 under for the tournament) and Englishwomen Bronte Law and Mel Reid (63, 2 under).
TOP INDIANA NEWS/RELEASES FROM ORGANIZATIONS
BEST HIGH SCHOOLS FOR SPORTS IN INDIANA
(Stacker) — More than 7.6 million high school students played sports across the U.S. during the 2021-22 academic year, according to data from the National Federation of State High School Associations. Those athletes participated in a slew of sports: from football—the most popular sport for high school boys with 1 million players nationwide—to track and field, which is the most popular sport amongst high school girls in the U.S. with more than 488,000 athletes.
The dynamic landscape of high school sports has created competition not only between athletes but the institutions they represent. With more than 23,500 public and private secondary and high schools across the country, determining the best options for athletes is an arduous process.
High schools across the country are vying to be crowned the best institution for athletes in America and not only has the battle become personal but regional as well. States like California and Florida, which have high-profile high-school athletic programs, also want bragging rights.
Young athletes will continue to thrive as sports return to pre-pandemic participation levels and high schools put in the work to be considered one of the best institutions in America for sports.
Stacker compiled a list of the best high schools for sports in Indiana using data from Niche. These rankings factor in parent and student surveys on sports, total high school enrollment, K-12 sports championships, number of sports, and athletic participation rates.
#25. Scecina Memorial High School
– City: Indianapolis
– Type: Private, Catholic
– Overall Niche grade: B+
#24. Bloomington High School South
– City: Bloomington
– Type: Public
– Overall Niche grade: A+
#23. Zionsville Community High School
– City: Zionsville
– Type: Public
– Overall Niche grade: A+
#22. Columbus North High School
– City: Columbus
– Type: Public
– Overall Niche grade: A
#21. Oak Hill High School
– City: Converse
– Type: Public
– Overall Niche grade: B-
#20. Columbus East High School
– City: Columbus
– Type: Public
– Overall Niche grade: B+
#19. Central Catholic Jr. – Sr. High School
– City: Lafayette
– Type: Private, Catholic
– Overall Niche grade: A
#18. Marian High School
– City: Mishawaka
– Type: Private, Catholic
– Overall Niche grade: A
#17. Hamilton Southeastern High School
– City: Fishers
– Type: Public
– Overall Niche grade: A
#16. R. Nelson Snider High School
– City: Fort Wayne
– Type: Public
– Overall Niche grade: B
#15. East Central High School
– City: St Leon
– Type: Public
– Overall Niche grade: B+
#14. Lutheran High School of Indianapolis
– City: Indianapolis
– Type: Private, Lutheran
– Overall Niche grade: A-
#13. Roncalli High School
– City: Indianapolis
– Type: Private, Catholic
– Overall Niche grade: A-
#12. Warren Central High School
– City: Indianapolis
– Type: Public
– Overall Niche grade: B-
#11. Ben Davis High School
– City: Indianapolis
– Type: Public
– Overall Niche grade: B
#10. Cardinal Ritter High School
– City: Indianapolis
– Type: Private, Catholic
– Overall Niche grade: A
#9. Andrean High School
– City: Merrillville
– Type: Private, Catholic
– Overall Niche grade: A
#8. Center Grove High School
– City: Greenwood
– Type: Public
– Overall Niche grade: A
#7. Bishop Dwenger High School
– City: Fort Wayne
– Type: Private, Catholic
– Overall Niche grade: B+
#6. Mater Dei High School
– City: Evansville
– Type: Private, Catholic
– Overall Niche grade: B+
#5. Carmel High School
– City: Carmel
– Type: Public
– Overall Niche grade: A+
#4. Reitz Memorial High School
– City: Evansville
– Type: Private, Catholic
– Overall Niche grade: A-
#3. Bishop Chatard High School
– City: Indianapolis
– Type: Private, Catholic
– Overall Niche grade: A
#2. Culver Academies
– City: Culver
– Type: Private, Boarding
– Overall Niche grade: A+
#1. Cathedral High School
– City: Indianapolis
– Type: Private, Catholic
– Overall Niche grade: A+
PALACIOS’ TENTH INNING BLAST PROPELS INDIANS TO EXTRA INNINGS WIN, 5-3
DES MOINES, Iowa – Center fielder Josh Palacios’ first home run since returning to Triple-A gave the Indianapolis Indians their first win over the Iowa Cubs this week at Principal Park, 5-3, in 10 innings.
Knotted at 3-3 heading into the tenth, the Indians (43-49) jumped ahead thanks for a 417-foot blast to right center field from Palacios against Iowa closer Manuel Rodriguez (L, 2-4). It scored placed runner Chris Owings to give Indianapolis a two-run lead, which Hunter Stratton (W, 3-4) did not relinquish. Stratton struck out the side in the tenth, putting the finishing touches on the Indians’ first extra innings win of the season in just their second extra innings game.
The Indians jumped out to an early 3-0 lead thanks to a three-run top of the second inning. Catcher Jason Delay plated the first run for Indianapolis with an RBI groundout, and Owings’ two-run single to right field finished the job. It was Owings’ second hit of the night, as he drilled the first pitch of the game from I-Cubs starter Caleb Kilian off the top of the wall in right-center field for a triple.
In the fourth, the Cubs (54-37) climbed back to even with a three-run frame. Right fielder Darius Hill ripped a solo home run that just snuck inside the right field foul pole to open the offense, while catcher Bryce Windham followed with an RBI triple to left center against Indians starter Kyle Nicolas and center fielder Nelson Velazquez plated one more with a single down the left field line.
Along with Stratton’s two scoreless innings in the ninth and tenth, the Indians bullpen combined for 6.1 inning of scoreless baseball while striking out seven. Colin Selby excelled in the two-inning spurt, allowing just one hit and punching out three.
The Indians and Cubs continue their six-game series on Friday night at 8:08 PM ET at Principal Park. Left-hander Kent Emanuel (7-3, 6.07) gets the ball for Indianapolis against Iowa right-hander Riley Thompson (2-6, 4.97).
ONE BIG COLTS TRAINING CAMP QUESTION, RUNNING BACKS: CAN JONATHAN TAYLOR, RUN GAME GET BACK ON TRACK?
Jonathan Taylor’s message to Anthony Richardson, whenever the No. 4 overall pick takes over as the Colts’ starting quarterback, will be simple: “I got you.”
And it’s not just about giving Richardson the mental and physical breather of handing the ball off.
“No. 1, just let him know hey, we have a protection called, I’m keeping you upright,” Taylor said. “Don’t worry about a thing. We know the five guys up front, those guys are going to keep you upright.
“We’re side by side. Look where we’re at, we’re side by side. That’s how it is. I have your back. I’m right here with you. No matter, hey, I need you go to get this guy in the A-gap, or hey, I need you get out quick so I can dump it off to you. I’m right here by your side and that means something.”
Richardson will need to trust Taylor when he drops back to pass, certainly. But for the health of the entire Colts offense, being able to lean on Taylor – whether Richardson or Gardner Minshew is at quarterback – will be key in 2023.
Taylor battled nagging ankle issues in 2022, and his production slipped after two standout seasons to begin his career.
There are plenty of reasons to believe 2022 was an outlier for Taylor. First: He underwent an offseason procedure on his ankle and spent the spring methodically and intentionally working toward being cleared to practice. When healthy in 2020-2021, Taylor proved to be one of the NFL’s most efficient and explosive running backs.
But some of Taylor’s underlying numbers – the ones largely dependent on him, and not the rest of the offense – from 2022 are encouraging. Notably, Taylor averaged 0.22 missed tackles per attempt in 2022; he averaged 0.20 in 2021 (both were easily above league average). And he averaged 3.08 yards after contact per rushing attempt, down from 3.83 in 2021 but still above the NFL average (numbers via Pro Football Focus).
In a lot of ways, though, 2023 will be a fresh start for Taylor. And that fresh start will begin in earnest at Grand Park over the next few weeks.
“We have another opportunity – 2021, 2022, now it’s 2023,” Taylor said. “You have another opportunity to write another page in your book. What are you going to do? What’s this chapter going to be? How do you want to express yourself with this chapter? So, that’s what I’m excited for.”
IND-TBR TIED 2023 SEASON OPENER, 1-1
Indy Eleven vs Tampa Bay Rowdies
Saturday, July 22, 2023 – 7:00 p.m. ET
Carroll Stadium – Indianapolis, Ind.
2023 USL Championship Records
Indy Eleven: 5W-7L-6D (-1), 21 pts; 8th in Eastern Conference
Tampa Bay: 10W-5L-4D (12), 34 pts, 2nd in Eastern Conference
Community Health Network Sports Medicine Indy Eleven Injury Report
OUT: DF B. Rebellon (L adductor), DF J. Vazquez (leg)
SETTING THE SCENE
The Boys in Blue return to action Saturday when they host the Tampa Bay Rowdies for the second and final meeting of the regular season (3.11). Indy trails the all-time series 1-3-3.
The Eleven are coming off a 1-1 draw vs Charleston Battery and are 1-2-2 in their last five games. With a 5-7-6 record, Indy is eighth in the USL Championship’s Eastern Conference.
Tampa Bay is 3-1-1 in its last five matches and is coming off a 1-0 loss to Birmingham Legion FC. TBR sits second in the Eastern Conference at 10-5-4.
SERIES VS. TAMPA BAY ROWDIES
Saturday marks the eighth meeting between the two teams, with Tampa Bay holding the 3-1-3 all-time advantage in USL Championship action. The is the second meeting of two this season.
TBR leads: 3-1-3
GF 7, GA 11
3.11.23 at TBR D, 1-1
7.30.22 home L, 3-1
3.19.22 at TBR L, 2-0
10.12.19 at TBR D, 1-1
5.1.19 home D, 0-0
USL Championship Regular Season
Tampa Bay Rowdies 1:1 Indy Eleven
Saturday, March 11, 2023
Al Lang Stadium – St. Petersburg, Fla.
TBR – Jake Areman (Sebastian Dalgaard) 57’
IND – Aodhan Quinn (penalty kick) 96+’
LAST TIME OUT
IND 1:1 CHS
Aodhan Quinn came up big from the spot converting his sixth penalty kick of the season to lead Indy Eleven to a 1-1 draw with Charleston Battery on Wednesday night.
Quinn’s team-leading sixth goal of the season, all penalty kicks, gives him 51 regular season career goals and puts him at 24-for-27 in penalty kicks, converting on more than any other player in USL Championship history. Tonight, Quinn also became the second player in USL Championship history to reach 20,000 minutes in regular-season action. He is currently at 20,006 minutes. Only Taylor Mueller has more at 20,077 after completing his career.
The go-ahead PK was not enough for the Eleven as Charleston picked up the equalizer from Tristan Trager in the 77th-minute.
Charleston earned the 58%-42% advantage in possession, while the two teams were even at 10 shots apiece. Indy had the slight edge in shots on target at 3-2, with Quinn securing two.
IND – Aodhan Quinn (penalty) 61’
CHS – Tristan Trager (Emilo Ycaza) 77’
CHS – Sebastian Palma (caution) 38’
IND – Macauley King (caution) 65′
IND – Robby Dambrot (caution) 85′
IND – Robby Dambrot (caution/ejection) 89′
HOLMES, JACKSON DAVIS NAMED IU ATHLETES OF THE YEAR
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. –Mackenzie Holmes (women’s basketball) and Trayce Jackson-Davis (men’s basketball) have been selected as the recipients of the IU Athlete of the Year award for the 2022-23 season for their performances on the court.
“Congratulations to Mackenzie and Trayce for their well-deserved selections as our 2022-23 Athletes of the Year,” said IU Vice President and Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Scott Dolson. “As first-team All-Americans and Wooden Award finalists, they each enjoyed individual successes that rival those of any other past great that has played for our tradition-rich basketball programs. Every bit as important to their individual accomplishments, though, is the team success that each played such a big part in this past season. The 2022-23 year was one of our department’s most successful in decades, both in terms of individual and team successes. That fact makes this year’s award even that much more meaningful for these two all-time greats.”
The Gorham, Maine native averaged a team-high 22.3 points, 7.3 rebounds, 1.9 blocks. She was one of the nation’s most accurate shooters by going 68.0 percent from the floor. She is second in the nation and leading the Big Ten in field goal percentage, fifth in field goals made (281), sixth in points scored (692), and seventh in points per game (22.3). Holmes led the Hoosiers in scoring on 25 occasions this season while posting double figures in 31 games, scoring 20 points 19 times and three 30-point scoring efforts. Her nine double-doubles led the team, as six of her double-doubles occurred in conference play which ranks eighth all-time in a single season. She led the league in blocks (58) and blocks per game (1.9) and averages 1.1 steals (35) per game. She set a season-high five blocks against Nebraska and Michigan while recording multiple blocks in 14 games. Holmes is now in the top five in scoring in school history (1,897) and second in all-time blocks (208).
Other awards for Holmes this season included the program’s first Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year and is now a three-time All-Big Ten selection in her career. She has also been named a 2023 Lisa Leslie Award finalist, a 2023 Wade Trophy finalist, 2023 Jersey Mike’s Naismith Trophy semifinalist and 2023 USBWA Ann Meyers Drysdale Player of the Year candidate.
Jackson-Davis was a consensus first-team All-American and winner of the Karl Malone award as the nation’s top power forward. He started 32 games as a senior and averaged 20.9 points, 10.8 rebounds, 4.0 assists and 2.9 blocks per game. He is the first Division I men’s basketball player to average at least 20.0 points, 10.0 rebounds, 4.0 assists and 2.0 blocks in a season in over 25 years. Additionally, he was named All-Big Ten first team, All-Big Ten defensive team and was a five time Big Ten player of the week.
A 6-foot-9 froward from Greenwood, Jackson-Davis finished his Hoosier career third on the all-time program list for career points (2,258) and double-doubles (50). He holds the school record in both career rebounds (1,143) and blocked shots (270). TJD became the fifth player in Big Ten men’s basketball history to amass 2,000 career points and 1,000 rebounds. He was selected 57th overall in the 2023 NBA Draft to the Golden State Warriors.
INCOMING FRESHMAN ALY VANBRANDT WINS MICHIGAN’S MISS SOFTBALL AWARD
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. ––––– Indiana Softball’s Aly VanBrandt recently won the 2023 Michigan Miss Softball Award for position players.
VanBrandt, a shortstop, was selected as the 2023 winner by the Michigan High School Softball Coaches Association.
The prestigious award capped off a standout career at Whiteford High School for the incoming Indiana freshman.
The Ottawa Lake native broke five school records including career runs (202), career hits (220) and career batting average (.641). She was also a first team All-State selection and led Whiteford to the MHSSCAA Division 3 title game this past season.
VanBrandt is only the third player and second position player from Monroe County (Mich.) to earn the Miss Softball honor.
VanBrandt will join the Hoosiers in Bloomington next month.
BALL STATE FOOTBALL
MAC MEDIA DAY: CLAYTON COLL AND BRADY HUNT READY TO ATTACK UPCOMING SEASON
DETROIT — The Mid-American Conference conducted its annual football media day on Thursday at the historic Fox Theatre in Detroit, setting the stage for the league’s 77th football season. The MAC Championship game will be conducted just blocks from here, at Ford Field, in December.
Ball State is hoping for a return to Ford Field on December 2, where it captured the 2020 crown in a 38-28 win over Buffalo.
Picked third in the West Division prior that championship run of 2020, the Cardinals were selected fifth in a media day poll of coaches released prior to Thursday’s festivities.
“If we were picked first, it would not change any of my preparation or hard work or my routine each day,” said all-conference linebacker Clayton Coll, “so why would being picked fifth change anything about what I do? Honestly, it doesn’t mean a whole lot. The MAC will continue to be closely contested. It’s too close and too crazy, there are a lot of things that can happen.”
Ever the team leader and spokesman while attending media day activities for the second straight year, Coll continued, “I learned from my dad a long time ago to ‘control the controllables.’ If you control the things you can, good things will happen. You can’t let it affect your mindset.”
Joining Coll and head coach Mike Neu at the league’s kickoff event to the 2023 season was sophomore tight end Brady Hunt – last year a first-team All-MAC selection and a Freshman All-American.
“The only people that can affect whether we finish first or finish last, are our guys in the locker room,” said Hunt. “The MAC Championship remains our goal, no matter where we are picked.”
Within the confines of the architecturally magnificent theatre, Neu, Coll and Hunt engaged in media interviews with coaches and players from all 12 MAC schools.
Added Coll: “I’ve really enjoyed being at this venue. It’s not often you get to enjoy a place with such historic value, and such brilliant architecture, without really going on a big trip someplace. This has been nice. I think it’s great for the MAC to give us the opportunity to come here.”
After opening training camp in two weeks on August 1, Ball State battles Kentucky (Sept. 2) and Georgia (Sept. 9) before hosting Indiana State (Sept. 16) and Georgia Southern (Sept. 23) in non-league action. The Cards host Western Michigan on Sept. 30 to open an eight-week run through the annual MAC gauntlet.
Toledo was tabbed to capture the West title in the MAC, while Ohio was picked to win the East. Following the Rockets in the West were Eastern Michigan, Northern Illinois, Central Michigan, the Cardinals and Western Michigan. Following the Bobcats in the East were Miami, Buffalo, Bowling Green, Akron and Kent State.
NOTRE DAME HOCKEY
LEIVERMANN INKS PROFESSIONAL CONTRACT
SOUTH BEND, Ind. – Former Irish blueliner, and 2022-23 team captain, Nick Leivermann has signed a professional contract with the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League.
“My time at Notre Dame prepared me for my next steps in hockey,” Leivermann stated. “I’m so thankful for the program, teammates, and coaches who have helped me get to this position.”
In five seasons with the Irish, Leivermann donned the Blue and Gold sweater 147 times and tallied 77 career points. In his final season at Notre Dame, the Eden Prairie, Minnesota native served as captain for the Irish and led all defensemen with 18 points off six goals and 12 assists. A 2023 All-Big Ten honorable mention and Hobey Baker Memorial Award nominee, Leivermann was a key component to the team’s three NCAA Tournament appearances during his tenure, including two regional final appearances.
The Bears, the 2023 Calder Cup Champions, return to play October 4, 2023. This past season the Washington Capitals’ AHL affiliates finished second in the regular season standings before clinching the title in overtime of Game 7 against the Coachella Valley Firebirds, 3-2.
“I’m excited to begin the next chapter of my career with the Hershey Bears,” Leivermann ended.
ADAMS SIGNS WITH SOUTH CAROLINA
SOUTH BEND, Ind. – Following a two-year graduate career at the University of Notre Dame, Jack Adams, a former Irish hockey forward, has signed a deal with the South Carolina Stingrays of the ECHL.
“There isn’t a better place in the country to be a student-athlete than the University of Notre Dame,” Adams said, reflecting on his time with the Irish. “This staff and my teammates gave me an opportunity when no one else would and I’m forever grateful to call this place my home. With the roster they have this coming season, and adding Brock [Sheahan] to the staff, I’m so excited to watch the Irish get back where we belong.”
The Boxford, Massachusetts native joins the Stingrays, the Washington Capitals’s ECHL affiliate, following two seasons with the Blue and Gold. In his Irish career, Adams appeared in 70 games and tallied 29 points off 13 goals and 16 assists. In his final season, the forward tallied 13 points and led the team with four game-winning goals.
In six seasons at the collegiate level, Adams skated in 142 contests and finished with 64 points behind 27 goals and 37 assists.
“I can’t wait to get to South Carolina, but the only reason I have a chance to play professional hockey is because of Coach Jackson and the University of Notre Dame,” Adams concluded.
SMALL COLLEGE ATHLETIC SITES:
INDIANA WESLEYAN ATHLETICS: https://iwuwildcats.com/
EARLHAM ATHLETICS: https://goearlham.com/
WABASH ATHLETICS: https://sports.wabash.edu/
FRANKLIN ATHLETICS: https://franklingrizzlies.com/
ROSE-HULMAN ATHLETICS: https://athletics.rose-hulman.edu/
ANDERSON ATHLETICS: https://athletics.anderson.edu/landing/index
TRINE ATHLETICS: https://trinethunder.com/landing/index
BETHEL ATHLETICS: https://bupilots.com/
DEPAUW ATHLETICS: https://depauwtigers.com/
HANOVER ATHLETICS: https://athletics.hanover.edu/
MANCHESTER ATHLETICS: https://muspartans.com/
HUNTINGTON ATHLETICS: https://www.huathletics.com/
OAKLAND CITY ATHLETICS: https://gomightyoaks.com/index.aspx
ST. FRANCIS ATHLETICS: https://www.saintfranciscougars.com/landing/index
IU KOKOMO ATHLETICS: https://iukcougars.com/
IU EAST ATHLETICS: https://www.iueredwolves.com/
IU SOUTH BEND ATHLETICS: https://iusbtitans.com/
PURDUE NORTHWEST ATHLETICS: https://pnwathletics.com/
INDIANA TECH ATHLETICS: https://indianatechwarriors.com/index.aspx
GRACE COLLEGE ATHLETICS: https://gclancers.com/
ST. MARY OF THE WOODS ATHLETICS: https://smwcathletics.com/
GOSHEN COLLEGE ATHLETICS: https://goleafs.net/
HOLY CROSS ATHLETICS: https://www.hcsaints.com/index.php
TAYLOR ATHLETICS: https://www.taylortrojans.com/
VINCENNES ATHLETICS: https://govutrailblazers.com/landing/index
|BALTIMORE||59||37||.615||–||30 – 20||29 – 17||17 – 11||18 – 7||10 – 7||8 – 2||W 2|
|TAMPA BAY||60||40||.600||1||35 – 16||25 – 24||17 – 11||16 – 4||9 – 10||3 – 7||L 5|
|TORONTO||54||43||.557||5.5||27 – 20||27 – 23||7 – 20||16 – 6||11 – 8||7 – 3||W 1|
|BOSTON||51||46||.526||8.5||26 – 22||25 – 24||16 – 11||11 – 8||11 – 8||7 – 3||L 2|
|NY YANKEES||50||47||.515||9.5||28 – 23||22 – 24||13 – 17||8 – 8||14 – 11||2 – 8||L 4|
|MINNESOTA||50||48||.510||–||26 – 22||24 – 26||12 – 17||18 – 12||10 – 6||5 – 5||L 1|
|CLEVELAND||47||49||.490||2||24 – 22||23 – 27||7 – 8||13 – 13||13 – 9||5 – 5||L 1|
|DETROIT||44||52||.458||5||20 – 25||24 – 27||3 – 16||18 – 12||9 – 10||6 – 4||W 2|
|CHI WHITE SOX||41||57||.418||9||21 – 25||20 – 32||6 – 16||15 – 11||9 – 14||4 – 6||W 1|
|KANSAS CITY||28||70||.286||22||15 – 36||13 – 34||5 – 12||9 – 25||4 – 11||3 – 7||L 2|
|TEXAS||58||39||.598||–||33 – 18||25 – 21||14 – 11||14 – 5||16 – 11||7 – 3||W 6|
|HOUSTON||54||43||.557||4||25 – 22||29 – 21||5 – 5||8 – 11||20 – 11||5 – 5||W 2|
|LA ANGELS||49||48||.505||9||27 – 22||22 – 26||11 – 9||11 – 8||16 – 14||4 – 6||W 3|
|SEATTLE||48||48||.500||9.5||27 – 24||21 – 24||7 – 11||10 – 10||15 – 11||5 – 5||W 1|
|OAKLAND||27||72||.273||32||14 – 37||13 – 35||7 – 19||7 – 11||4 – 24||2 – 8||L 1|
|ATLANTA||62||33||.653||–||32 – 19||30 – 14||22 – 6||8 – 1||11 – 9||5 – 5||W 1|
|PHILADELPHIA||52||44||.542||10.5||26 – 19||26 – 25||9 – 15||10 – 6||14 – 13||5 – 5||L 2|
|MIAMI||53||45||.541||10.5||30 – 18||23 – 27||13 – 16||11 – 9||9 – 10||2 – 8||L 6|
|NY METS||45||51||.469||17.5||23 – 22||22 – 29||13 – 13||5 – 14||15 – 13||5 – 5||L 1|
|WASHINGTON||38||58||.396||24.5||15 – 32||23 – 26||9 – 16||7 – 13||9 – 13||4 – 6||L 2|
|MILWAUKEE||54||43||.557||–||26 – 21||28 – 22||8 – 2||20 – 9||8 – 15||8 – 2||W 2|
|CINCINNATI||52||46||.531||2.5||25 – 26||27 – 20||12 – 11||12 – 17||11 – 8||3 – 7||W 2|
|CHI CUBS||45||51||.469||8.5||24 – 26||21 – 25||8 – 14||12 – 12||9 – 8||5 – 5||L 1|
|ST. LOUIS||44||53||.454||10||22 – 26||22 – 27||10 – 9||12 – 14||7 – 13||8 – 2||W 6|
|PITTSBURGH||42||54||.438||11.5||23 – 26||19 – 28||5 – 5||11 – 15||14 – 14||2 – 8||W 1|
|LA DODGERS||55||40||.579||–||29 – 16||26 – 24||11 – 7||15 – 12||14 – 11||8 – 2||L 1|
|ARIZONA||54||43||.557||2||26 – 24||28 – 19||13 – 15||10 – 5||17 – 11||4 – 6||L 1|
|SAN FRANCISCO||54||43||.557||2||26 – 22||28 – 21||10 – 9||18 – 9||15 – 10||7 – 3||L 2|
|SAN DIEGO||46||51||.474||10||25 – 23||21 – 28||13 – 13||7 – 13||12 – 13||5 – 5||L 1|
|COLORADO||37||59||.385||18.5||23 – 26||14 – 33||11 – 14||8 – 10||6 – 19||4 – 6||L 1|
TODAY IN BASEBALL HISTORY
1892 In a matchup of 300 game-winners at the Philadelphia Baseball Grounds, Phillies’ submariner Tim Keefe sinks Jim “Pud” Galvin and the Browns, 2-0. The next time two National League pitchers with 300 or more victories will face each other will occur in 2005, when Greg Maddux of the Cubs beats Astros ace Roger Clemens at Minute Maid Park, 3-2.
1921 The Indians and the Yankees hit 16 doubles collectively to establish a new American League record. The Tribe, with nine of the two-baggers, beat the Bronx Bombers in Cleveland’s League Park, 17-8.
1930 Harvey Henrick’s ninth-inning three-run round-tripper off the bench gives the Dodgers a dramatic 9-8 come-from-behind victory over the Redbirds in the first game of a twin bill at Ebbets Field. Redbirds George Puccinelli and Jim Bottomley and Brooklyn’s Hal Lee all homer, appearing as pinch-hitters in the game.
1936 Joe Medwick collects his tenth consecutive hit to tie a National League record shared by Ed Konetchy, Kiki Cuyler, and Chick Hafey when he singles off Carl Hubbell in the sixth inning of the Cardinals’ 2-1 loss to the Giants at the Polo Grounds. The 24-year-old Cardinals slugger, called Ducky by his teammates, had seven hits in his last seven times at-bat in the Boston Bees’ doubleheader sweep at Sportsman’s Park before yesterday’s off-day.
1945 At Philadelphia’s Shibe Park, the A’s and Tigers play the second-longest game in major league history, with the 24-inning contest ending in a 1-1 tie. Detroit right-hander Les Mueller pitches 19.2 innings in the four-hour and 48-minute marathon, the longest outing since 1921 when George Uhle tossed twenty innings to earn victory against losing pitcher Ted Lyons, who went the distance, in the Indians’ 6-5 win over the White Sox in the 21-innings contest.
1946 Lew Flick sets a professional baseball record when he collects nine consecutive hits in a single game before grounding out in his final at-bat in the 19-inning opener against Memphis. The Little Rock Travelers outfielder will get three more knocks off the Chicks’ pitching staff in the nightcap, finishing the day 12-for-13 in the Southern Association (AA) doubleheader.
1947 Frankie Frisch (.316) becomes the first switch-hitter inducted into the Hall of Fame. Carl Hubbell, Mickey Cochrane, and Lefty Grove join the ‘Fordham Flash’ as the newest members enshrined at Cooperstown.
1956 In a 13-6 defeat to the Cubs, Dodgers’ shortstop Pee Wee Reese becomes one of five active players to collect 2000 hits, and teammate Junior Gilliam sets a major league record by handling 12 assists at second base.
1956 With the Reds’ 4-3 loss to the Pirates at Crosley Field, Brooks Lawrence’s 13-game winning streak comes to an end. Roberto Clemente’s three-run homer in the ninth inning proves to be the decisive hit.
1959 Under intense public pressure and the Massachusetts Committee Against Discrimination investigation, the Red Sox become the last club to integrate. Fourteen years after Boston passed on Jackie Robinson despite a successful tryout in 1945, Elijah ‘Pumpsie’ Green pinch runs and plays shortstop to become the first black to play for the team.
1960 Phillies starter Robin Roberts pitches the third one-hitter of his career, and Candlestick Park’s third one-hitter this season, when he goes the distance, beating the Giants in their new home, 3-0. Felipe Alou spoils Roberts’ bid for a no-hitter, a feat the right-hander will not accomplish during his 19-year Hall of Fame career, with a fifth-inning infield hit, a hit third baseman Joe Morgan fields, but cannot throw the ball when he falls while making the play.
1961 With back-to-back homers in the top of the first at Fenway Park, Mickey Mantle and Roger Maris continue their assault on Babe Ruth’s single-season home run record. However, the game’s decisive hit is a pinch-hit grand slam by Johnny Blanchard with two outs in the ninth inning, which propels the Bronx Bombers past the Red Sox, 11-8.
1962 After Marv Throneberry’s fifth-inning error, which would have ended the frame, Vada Pinson hits a two-out, two-run homer, wasting Craig Anderson’s complete-game effort against Cincinnati. The eventual 5-3 defeat at Crosley Field makes the right-hander the third consecutive Mets starter, following losing efforts by Jay Hook and Roger Craig, to pitch a complete game and not get a victory.
1963 Pirates outfielder Jerry Lynch pinch hits a three-run home run off Chicago’s Lindy McDaniel in the ninth inning to tie the Forbes Field contest at five, a game in which the Bucs will eventually win 14 innings, 6-5. The heroic homer is the left-handed hitter’s 14th career round-tripper off the bench, tying a major league mark established by former Cincinnati teammate George Crowe.
1963 The usually mild-mannered Dodger manager Walter Alston is thrown out of both games of a doubleheader when the Braves sweep a twin bill from Los Angeles for the first and only time in Milwaukee, 7-2 and 13-7. To make matters worse, the manager has beer thrown in his face by a hometown fan as he leaves the second game.
1970 Ignoring Clay Kirby’s bid for the Padres’ first no-hitter in the 259th game of their existence, skipper Preston Gomez, with his club trailing the Mets, 1-0, in the eighth inning, decides to pinch hit for his starting pitcher. Reliever Jack Baldschun fails to keep New York hitless, yielding a leadoff hit to Bud Harrelson, and San Diego eventually loses the Jack Murphy Stadium contest, 3-0.
1973 Braves slugger Hank Aaron becomes the second major leaguer to hit 700 career home runs when he goes deep off Phillies southpaw Ken Brett in the third inning of the team’s 8-4 loss at Atlanta Stadium. Bronx Bomber Babe Ruth reached the milestone in 1934, homering off Detroit’s Tommy Bridges at Briggs Stadium.
1975 In the Mets’ 6-4 loss to the Astros at Shea Stadium, Joe Torre becomes the first player in National League history to hit into four straight double plays. Felix Millan, enjoying a 4-for-4 day, singles in four consecutive at-bats, making the third baseman’s dubious mark possible.
1982 The Reds, 24 games below .500, fire manager John McNamara and ask third base coach Russ Nixon to manage the team. The new skipper will win only 27 games of the 70 left in the campaign, and Cincinnati will replace him after another last-place finish at the end of next season.
1988 The Red Sox suspend Jim Rice for three days for shoving manager Joe Morgan. The Boston outfielder became upset when the skipper pinch-hit for him, using the light-hitting shortstop Spike Owen.
1988 The Yankees trade Jay Buhner, minor league prospect Rich Balabon, and a player to be named later (Troy Evers) to the Mariners in exchange for 33-year-old Ken Phelps. The one-sided deal will be immortalized on Seinfeld by Frank Costanza, George’s dad, when he laments the Bronx Bombers’ poor judgment, “How could you have traded Buhner for Ken Phelps?”
1990 In his first major league start, Ben McDonald, the Orioles’ top pick in last year’s June draft, blanks Chicago on four hits, 2-0. The 22-year-old right-hander from Louisiana State, the first American League pitcher to debut with a shutout in 15 years, retires the final 16 White Sox batters he faces after allowing Ron Kittle’s fourth-inning single.
1993 Jose Uribe walks on a 3-2 count thanks to home umpire Harry Wendelstedt losing track of the pitches. The fifth-inning base-on-balls leads to a run when the Astros shortstop scores on Steve Finley’s double in Houston’s 5-3 victory over the Bucs at Three Rivers Stadium.
2000 The Orioles halt their 20-game Canadian losing streak, defeating the Blue Jays at the SkyDome, 9-5. Future Hall of Farmer Harold Blaine collects four hits in Baltimore’s first victory north of the border since June 13, 1998.
2001 At Camden Yards, Troy Glaus becomes the fastest Angel player to reach the 100 career home run mark. The 24-year-old Halos’ third baseman hits a pair of home runs in the team’s 6-5 ten-inning victory over Baltimore.
2001 The Dodgers rout the Rockies, 22–7, scoring the most runs by the team since July 10th, 1943, when the wartime Brooklyn club beat the Pirates at Ebbets Field, 23-6. The franchise mark for tallies in a contest is 25, first accomplished on May 20th, 1896, then matched in 1901 on September 23rd.
2003 At Dodger Stadium, Vladimir Guerrero hit his 226th career home run, breaking Andre Dawson’s club record. The Expos’ right fielder hits his milestone round-tripper off Odalis Perez, a 454-foot blast over the left-field wall.
2004 Thanks to an unusual play in the outfield, David Newhan hits a rare inside-the-park homer at Fenway. Inexplicably, Red Sox outfielder Manny Ramirez, from left field, cuts off the relay throw from center fielder Johnny Damon, allowing two Orioles to score in Baltimore’s 10-5 victory.
2004 Mark Buehrle faces the minimum 27 batters as the White Sox rout the Indians, 14-0. The 25-year-old southpaw, throwing just ninety pitches, allows only two hits, with both runners erased due to a double play.
2004 At Wrigley Field, a club employee discovers another piece of concrete, which fell from the park’s upper deck. Two other chunks have also fallen recently in different sections in the 90-year-old stadium, prompting Mayor Richard Daley to say he would not hesitate to close parts, or all, of the facility to protect fans from potential harm.
2005 Hideki Matsui plays in his 395th consecutive game to start his career, breaking Al Simmons’s 1926 American League record. The Japanese outfielder will also surpass Ernie Banks’ NL mark of 424 en route to establishing the new major league record of 518 consecutive contests.
2006 Going deep in the third inning, 30-year-old Yankees’ third baseman Alex Rodriguez collects his 2,000th career hit and, at the same time, becomes the youngest player to reach the 450 home run plateau. Later in the day, Padres catcher Mike Piazza also becomes a member of the 2000-hit club with a second-inning double to left field at San Francisco’s AT&T Park.
2006 After the All-Star break, as part of the scheduled “grand re-opening” of the ballpark, the Nationals stage the first live Presidents Race at the RFK Stadium, with George Washington taking first place in the inaugural competition among the Chief Executives. Although mascots Thomas Jefferson and Abraham Lincoln chalk up wins in the next two days, Teddy Roosevelt will not, thus beginning his infamous streak over more than 500 attempts before finally crossing the finish line first on the final day of the 2012 season.
2007 Willie Harris goes 6-for-6 with two triples, a steal, and six RBI to help the Braves top the Cardinals, 14 – 6. The outfielder from Cairo (GA) joins Felix Millan, who accomplished the feat 27 years earlier, as the second Atlanta player to get six hits in a game.
2007 The Pirates retire uniform number 11, once worn by Paul Waner, a right fielder who hit .340 during his 15-year tenure (1926-1940) in Pittsburgh. Big Poison’s digits are the tenth to be retired in franchise history and the first in a decade.
2008 Diamondback left-hander Randy Johnson becomes the first major leaguer to collect 2,000 strikeouts for two different teams. The Arizona southpaw, who fanned 2,162 batters pitching for the Mariners from 1989-98, whiffs Cubs third baseman Aramis Ramirez to earn the distinction.
2008 Jose Reyes’ fourth-inning three-bagger in the Mets’ 7-5 victory over the Reds at Great American Ball Park makes him the franchise leader in triples. The speedy shortstop’s 11th three-base hit this season, the sixty-third of his career, all as a Met, puts the 25-year-old infielder one ahead of Mookie Wilson.
2008 Coming out of the bullpen in the eighth, Jimmy Gobble allows ten runs in two-thirds of an inning, setting a franchise record for the most runs allowed by a Royals reliever in a game. The 26-year-old southpaw, who will be placed on the 15-day disabled list the next day with a stiff lower back, gives up seven hits and walks four batters, facing 13 Tigers.
2010 🇺🇬 In a Middle East/Africa Regional contest played in Poland, Uganda becomes the first team to execute a triple play in a Little League tournament. The 1-2-3-5 triple killing ends the game, giving the team a 9-3 victory over heavily-favored Saudi Arabia.
2012 At Cooperstown’s Doubleday Field, the Hall of Fame honors Fox analyst Tim McCarver and Toronto Sun’s Bob Elliott for their longtime contributions in covering baseball. The pair received the Ford C. Frick Award for broadcasting and the J.G. Taylor Spink Award for sports writing.
2013 In an on-field ceremony, former first baseman Carlos Delgado becomes the 10th member inducted on the Level of Excellence, an award bestowed by the Blue Jays to recognize an individual player’s accomplishments for the team. Previous recipients of the prestigious award include Dave Stieb, George Bell, Joe Carter, Cito Gaston, Tony Fernandez, Pat Gillick, Tom Cheek, Roberto Alomar, and Paul Beeston.
2015 The lengthy investigation and prosecution of Barry Bonds for obstruction of justice end when the Department of Justice reveals it is not challenging his felony conviction’s reversal to the US Supreme Court. Baseball’s career home run leader was convicted of obstruction of justice in 2011 for giving convoluted answers to a federal grand jury when probed about PED injections.
BASEBALL HALL OF FAME
One of the greatest hitters of all time, Ted Williams, once called fellow Hall of Famer Early Wynn “the toughest pitcher I ever faced.”
Undoubtedly, the Splendid Splinter’s sentiment was shared by many big league hitters for more than two decades.
Wynn combined his physical gifts with intimidation and determination to overcome early struggles and become one of the most dominant hurlers of his era.
“Since the first time I saw my father play semipro ball in Alabama, it has been my greatest ambition and desire to be a big league ballplayer,” Wynn once said.
It was during Wynn’s early years with the Washington Senators that he began to gain a reputation for aggressive play on the mound, exemplified by his willingness to knock down a batter if the occasion warranted.
“A pitcher has to look at the hitter as his mortal enemy,” Wynn once said.
After eight seasons with mediocre Washington teams, in which he had a 72-87 mark, Wynn was traded with first baseman Mickey Vernon to the Indians following the 1948 campaign in exchange for Joe Haynes, Ed Klieman and Eddie Robinson. Within two seasons, Wynn had transformed himself into one of the best pitchers in the American League.
“We were roommates and good friends,” Vernon would recall years later. “After I was traded back to Washington, I got four hits off him the first time I faced him, the last one knocking the glove off his hand. When I got to first base, he was steaming. He looked over and said, ‘Roommate or not, you’ve got to go in the dirt seat next time I see you.’ Sure enough, the next time I faced him, the first pitch was up over my head – to let me know he hadn’t forgotten.”
The move to Cleveland, where he teamed up with Bob Feller, Bob Lemon and Mike Garcia to give the team one of baseball’s great pitching rotations, proved fortuitous for Wynn. He led the AL in ERA with a mark of 3.20 in 1950, reached the 20-win mark four times from 1951-56 and won a big league-best 23 games in 1954 when the Indians captured the AL pennant.
But after compiling a 163-100 record for the Indians from 1949-57, was traded to the White Sox at the age of 37 following the 1957 season. Two years later, at age 39, Wynn led the league in wins (22), was named the Cy Young Award winner and helped pitch the White Sox to the 1959 pennant.
Wynn finished the 1962 season with 299 career wins, but was released by the White Sox after the season. After signing with the Indians, the 43-year-old posted his 300th win on July 13, 1963, becoming the 14th hurler in major league history to achieve the milestone.
Wynn, who pitched in four different decades, finished his big league pitching career with a record of 300-244, struck out 2,334 batters in 4,564 innings and had an earned run average of 3.54. He won at least 20 games in a season five times and was named to nine All-Star Games.
Wynn was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1972. He passed away on April 4, 1999.
The Chicago Charities College All Star games also known as the College All Star Football Classic was a preseason exhibition game that pitted the previous year’s season’s NFL champion against a roster of All Star college players from the year prior. The lone exception of having the NFL champ play took place in its inaugural 1934 game when the NFL runner up Chicago Bears played in the contest. The game was played from 1934 until 1976, skipping only in 1974 due to the NFL strike. At its onset the proceeds of the game benefitted the charities of the Chicago area and was almost always played at Soldier Field in the Windy City, with the exception of 1943 and 1944 when it was hosted by Northwestern University at Dyche Field.
HALL OF FAME BIRTHDAY FOR JULY 21
July 21, 1912 – El Campo, Texas – Bill Wallace was a halfback from Rice University from the seasons of 1932, 1934 and 1935 was born. According to the National Football Foundation the modern fans can’t possibly imagine the incredible talents of Wallace. This man in track and field was an highly talented and regarded sprinter and hurdler, on the gridiron, he was an elusive ballcarrier as well as an extremely accurate passer, a precision punter and a talented safety. In the 1934 Texas game without using his rushing skills he showed everyone that they could be used as a deterrent to unleash the rest of his skillful arsenal. Bill pinpointed punts three dead just short of the goal line, one even from 70 yards out. On two others in that game he punted out of bounds inside the ten-yard line pinning the Longhorns deep. Time after time he circled to the left drawing the Texas secondary out of position to leave their coverage and rush towards the line of scrimmage to stop him. Then, with only three minutes to go and Texas in the lead he circled left again, but instead of advancing, he promptly stopped and fired a long left-handed pass far across the field. End Ray Smith, with no defender even close to him, hauled in the pass and crossed the goal line, putting Rice ahead. After an interception, Rice scored again as the game ended in victory, but Wallace wasn’t through yet with the Rice cause. A fan tried to make off with the ball from the point-after kick after that final score. Wallace flew after him, busting through the interference of 20 or 30 spectators. Bill sent them all reeling and returned to the field with the game ball to celebrate the victory. Wallace was also Rice’s initial first team All-America selection. The collegiate career story of Bill Wallace was entered into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1978.
NUMBERS IN SPORTS
46 – 12 – 43 – 27 – 9
July 21, 1956 – Cincinnati Reds pitcher Brooks Lawrence, Number 46 suffered a loss after 13 straight victories on the mound.
July 21, 1959 – The last of the MLB teams have movement toward racial integration. The Boston Red Sox signed Pumpsie Green, Number 12 to their roster and played him in a game.
July 21, 1970 – San Diego’s Number 43, Clay Kirby had a whale of day on the mound. The Padre hurler had a no-hitter going for 8 innings, but sadly was sent to the bench for a pinch hitter to fill his spot to try and manufacture some runs. Reliever Jack Baldschun, wearing Number 27, entered in the 9th in relief however he gave up 3 hits and the Padres lost the contest by the score of, 3-0.
July 21, 1973 – The Atlanta Braves “Hammerin” Hank Aaron, wearing his famous Number 44 jersey drives a Philadelphia Phillies Ken Brett’s fastball out of the Atlanta ball park for his 700th career homerun.
July 21, 1975 – It was a game of fours. New York Mets hitter, veteran 2nd baseman, Félix Millán, Number 17 had 4 singles in the contest however these were balanced out by erased by Joe Torre’s (Number 9) 4 double plays that he hit into against the Houston Astros in a game where Houston triumphed 6-2. Torres quote in the Tampa Bay Times aftre the game, “When I retire I’m gonna buy a shortstop and put him in my den. At night, when I’m lonely, I’m gonna go down there and hit grounders to him.” Millán happened to be the man on base in each of those double plays.
July 21, 1991 – Great honor was bestowed upon some baseball legends. Ferguson Jenkins, Gaylord Perry, Rod Carew, Tony Lazzeri, & Bill Veeck were all elected to be inducted into the Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, NY
FOOTBALL HALL OF FAME
Place of Birth: Ruston, LA
Date of Birth: Nov 24, 1935
Place of Death: Los Angeles, CA
Date of Death: Dec 22, 2017
Jersey Number: 27
High School: Technical HS (Oakland, CA)
The only First Team All-America selection (1960) in New Mexico State football history, Pervis “Afterburner” Atkins led the Aggies to a perfect 11-0 season and a Border Conference title in 1960. Atkins twice topped the nation in all-purpose yards (1959-60) and holds the New Mexico State single season record with 1,800 all- purpose yards in 1960. During the 1959 season, he led the nation in rushing (971) and punt return yards (241). A two-time all conference selection, he caught touchdown passes in each of two Sun Bowl victories (1959-60). Atkins graduated with a B.A. in Sociology in 1962. Atkins was drafted in the third round of the 1960 NFL Draft by the Los Angeles Rams. He played seven seasons in the NFL, including stints with the Washington Redskins and Oakland Raiders. He finished his career with 3,300 all-purpose yards and three touchdowns.
Atkins was also an actor and producer, known for the 1974 feature film The Longest Yard, the made-for-TV movie The Desperate Miles, and the 1976 pilot for the TV series Delvecchio. He resided in Los Angeles until his death on December 22, 2017. He was 82.
TV SPORTS FRIDAY
|LPGA Tour: Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational||1:00pm||GOLF|
|PGA Tour: Barracuda Championship||5:00pm||GOLF|
|MLB REGULAR SEASON||TIME ET||TV|
|St. Louis at Chi. Cubs||2:20pm||Bally Sports|
|Baltimore at Tampa Bay||6:40pm||MASN/2|
|Colorado at Miami||6:40pm||ATTSN-RM|
|San Diego at Detroit||6:40pm||Bally Sports|
|Kansas City at NY Yankees||7:05pm||Bally Sports|
|San Francisco at Washington||7:05pm||NBCS-BAY|
|Arizona at Cincinnati||7:10pm||MLBN|
|NY Mets at Boston||7:10pm||MLBN|
|Philadelphia at Cleveland||7:10pm||NBCS-PHI|
|LA Dodgers at Texas||8:05pm||Spectrum|
|Atlanta at Milwaukee||8:10pm||Bally Sports|
|Chi. White Sox at Minnesota||8:10pm||NBCS-CHI|
|Pittsburgh at LA Angels||9:38pm||ATTSN-PIT|
|Houston at Oakland||9:40pm||ATTSN-SW|
|Toronto at Seattle||10:10pm||Sportsnet|
|ARCA Menards Series: Pocono ARCA 150||6:00pm||FS1|
|SOCCER MATCHES||TIME ET||TV|
|FIFA Women’s World Cup: Philippines vs Switzerland||1:00am||FS1|
|FIFA Women’s World Cup: Spain vs Costa Rica||3:30am||FS1|
|NWSL Challenge Cup: Racing Louisville FC vs Chicago Red Stars||7:00pm||Paramount+|
|FIFA Women’s World Cup: USA vs Vietnam||9:00pm||FOX|
|Canadian Premier League: Pacific vs Forge||10:00pm||FS2|
|NWSL Challenge Cup: Portland Thorns vs San Diego Wave||10:30pm||Paramount+|
|New York vs Washington||7:00pm||ION|
TV SPORTS SATURDAY
|LPGA Tour: Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational||4:00pm||CBS|
|PGA Tour: Barracuda Championship||5:00pm||GOLF|
|MLB REGULAR SEASON||TIME ET||TV|
|Kansas City at NY Yankees||1:05pm||MLBN|
|Colorado at Miami||1:10pm||MLBN|
|St. Louis at Chi. Cubs||2:20pm||Bally Sports|
|LA Dodgers at Texas||4:05pm||Spectrum|
|Arizona at Cincinnati||4:10pm||Bally Sports|
|Baltimore at Tampa Bay||4:10pm||MASN/2|
|NY Mets at Boston||4:10pm||FS1|
|Toronto at Seattle||4:10pm||Sportsnet|
|San Diego at Detroit||6:10pm||Bally Sports|
|San Francisco at Washington||7:05pm||NBCS-BAY|
|Philadelphia at Cleveland||7:10pm||NBCS-PHI|
|Atlanta at Milwaukee||7:15pm||FOX|
|Chi. White Sox at Minnesota||7:15pm||FOX|
|Houston at Oakland||9:07pm||MLBN|
|Pittsburgh at LA Angels||9:07pm||MLBN|
|NASCAR Truck: CRC Brakleen 150||12:00pm||FS1|
|IndyCar: Hy-Vee Homefront 250||3:00pm||NBC|
|Xfinity: Pocono 225||5:30pm||USA|
|SOCCER MATCHES||TIME ET||TV|
|FIFA Women’s World Cup: Zambia vs Japan||3:00am||FS1|
|FIFA Women’s World Cup: England vs Haiti||5:30am||FOX|
|FIFA Women’s World Cup: Denmark vs China||8:00am||FOX|
|Brasileirão: Flamengo vs América Mineiro||3:00pm||Paramount+|
|Brasileirão: Palmeiras vs Fortaleza||3:00pm||Paramount+|
|Brasileirão: Bahia vs Corinthians||5:30pm||Paramount+|
|Brasileirão: Cuiabá vs São Paulo||5:30pm||Paramount+|
|Canadian Premier League: Vancouver FC vs Cavalry||7:00pm||FS2|
|NWSL Challenge Cup: North Carolina Courage vs Washington Spirit||7:00pm||Paramount+|
|NWSL Challenge Cup: Kansas City Current vs Houston Dash||8:00pm||Paramount+|
|Leagues Cup: Philadelphia Union vs Tijuana||8:00pm||FS1|
|Brasileirão: Grêmio vs Atlético Mineiro||8:00pm||Paramount+|
|Leagues Cup: Portland Timbers vs SJ Earthquakes||10:00pm||FS1|
|Connecticut vs Atlanta||1:00pm||ESPN|
|Las Vegas vs Minnesota||3:00pm||ESPN|
|Los Angeles vs Dallas||8:00pm|
|Chicago vs Seattle||9:00pm||NBATV|