3:09 P.M.




5:39 P.M.































































Caitlin Clark, who broke the NCAA Division I women’s single-season and career scoring records this campaign, won the Naismith National Player of the Year Award for the second consecutive year.

The Iowa senior was honored in a ceremony held Wednesday in Cleveland, where the Hawkeyes will play in the Final Four on Friday.

The other nominees were USC freshman JuJu Watkins, UConn’s Paige Bueckers and Stanford’s Cameron Brink.

“I think it’s been a special year for women’s basketball, and also to win this award is really special,” Clark said. “But to be back here playing with my team, I couldn’t script it any better. … This (award is just as much my teammates’) as it is mine. I’m just very grateful and thankful, and I’ll see you all on Friday night.”

Clark is averaging 32 points and nine assists per game, both figures leading the nation. She also pulls down 7.3 rebounds per contest.

Her record point totals stand at 1,183 this season and 3,900 for her four-year career.

She is the first women’s player to win multiple Naismith awards since UConn’s Breanna Stewart captured three straight from 2014-16.

Bueckers, back after missing a season due to a torn anterior cruciate ligament, is contributing 22 points, 5.2 rebounds and 3.9 assists per game for the Final Four-bound Huskies. She and UConn will oppose Clark and Iowa on Friday.

Watkins averaged 27.1 points, 7.3 rebounds and 3.3 assists, as she broke the Division I freshman record for scoring.

Brink logged 17.4 points, 11.9 rebounds, 2.8 assists and a nation-best 3.7 blocks per game.


CLEVELAND (AP) — Long before Caitlin Clark broke records, packed arenas across the country like a Taylor Swift in sneakers and inspired young girls to be like her, women’s basketball looked very different than it does today.

Until 1997, there was no WNBA. Media coverage was minimal. The madness of March was almost exclusively the men’s domain.

Born five years following the WNBA’s launch, Clark has never known anything but what she’s helped create — a spectacular game underscored by a record 12.3 million viewers watching Monday’s LSU-Iowa rematch in the NCAA Tournament — and a sport with room to grow.

While Clark has done her part with every step-back logo 3-pointer, a generation of women cleared the way.

And as the Final Four roars into Cleveland this week —- Clark is there after scoring 41 in the regional final to dethrone Angel Reese and the defending champion Tigers — those roundball revolutionaries are getting a long overdue salute.

More than 40 years later, Nancy Lieberman remembers Billie Jean King assuring her she was blazing trails.

“She told me when I was 22, ‘You’re a pioneer,’” said Lieberman, whose on-court wizardry earned her the nickname “Lady Magic” and made her a three-time Kodak All-American at Old Dominion, two-time Olympian and Naismith Hall of Famer.

“I’m like, what? I’m a pioneer? I didn’t know what she meant. I know what she means now.”

It’s easy to forget that the 1996 U.S. Olympic team, which jumpstarted two professional leagues, played in 5,000-seat arenas during the Atlanta Games. And before those leagues launched, women went overseas to play professionally.

As Clark rewrote the record books this season while pushing TV viewership to unimaginable levels and pulling unprecedented attention to the women’s game, she steered the spotlight toward stars who preceded her. With the same deft touch as one of her down-court passes for an assist to a fast-breaking teammate, Clark has connected present to past.

Before dynasties at South Carolina, UConn, Tennessee or Louisana Tech, there were dominant programs at Delta State and Immaculata University, the first women’s national champions in 1972.

Clark’s run has also illuminated the contributions of some of the sport’s giants — greats like Lieberman, Ann Meyers Drysdale, Pearl Moore, Carol Blazejowski, Cheryl Miller, Maya Moore, Lynette Woodard and many others who laid the foundation for the heights the game has reached in 2024.

These women, some of whom have records that still aren’t acknowledged by the NCAA, have been glossed over in these Tik-Tok times.

“Those are the forgotten names, and they’re only brought up because there’s a record that was being broken where we haven’t done a great job at historically producing documentaries on the history of women’s basketball,” said South Carolina coach Dawn Staley, who has her undefeated team in a fourth straight Final Four.

“We have to do a better job,” Staley added. “This day and age will be documented and told a million times, and I hope when that’s being told that we pull from the legends. We’re standing on their shoulders, and what they’ve done should not be forgotten.”

Maybe not household names like today’s top players, who have benefitted from increased media attention the past two decades, and when NIL didn’t mean name, image and likeness but literally what they received for playing, they are the ones who made everything possible.

Barrier busters and then some.

“Some people play the game, and some people change the game,” Lieberman said in a phone interview. “I changed the game. Caitlin has changed the game. Cheryl Miller changed the game. Diana Taurasi changed the game. Brittney Griner changed the game and that doesn’t mean you’re not a hell of a player.

“There’s a lot of really good players, but how many have really changed the game?”

And my, how the game has changed.

Since 1972 and Title IX’s historic passing, which at least in theory gave females the same athletic opportunities as their male counterparts, women’s basketball has grown from a gym class activity in some places to a global game.

Professional leagues with varying degrees of success started and folded before the WNBA, which has blossomed in popularity with players and teams proudly promoting social activism and inclusion — along with playing high-level hoops.

For Meyers Drysdale, it’s been like watching a child learn how to crawl, walk and run.

It’s hard to imagine, but it wasn’t that long ago when women didn’t receive athletic scholarships. In fact, Meyers Drysdale, who had a highly publicized NBA tryout 45 years ago, was the first to get four-year financial assistance.

She followed her All-American brother, Dave, and played at UCLA, a decision she made casually at a family cookout.

“David was teammates with Kenny Washington and Kenny was going to be the women’s coach,” Meyers Drysdale said. “They came home for a weekend and said, ‘How would you like to go to UCLA and play basketball?’ I said, OK. That was the extent of my recruitment.”

That memory draws a hearty laugh from Meyers Drysdale, who was Clark and LSU’s Angel Reese rolled into one.

One of 11 children, she was one of one on the court — or anywhere she competed.

Along with basketball, Meyers Drysdale played softball, badminton, field hockey, tennis and ran track. So gifted, she won the female version of ABC’s “The Superstars” and competed in the men’s event. During filming she met her husband, Don, a Hall of Fame pitcher with the Dodgers who died of a heart attack in 1993.

Her flirtation with the men’s pro game came in 1979, when Meyers Drysdale made history as the first female to get an NBA tryout after signing a $50,000 free agent contract with Indiana.

She held her own before being cut by the Pacers after six practices, but her foray on the floor with men was a pivotal moment of acceptance for women. Doors were beginning to open.

“I got a lot of publicity with my tryout,” she said. “It helped. We didn’t have podcasts. We didn’t have social media. We had the local TV stations. We had local newspapers. You didn’t have all the stuff they have today.”

Lieberman and Meyers Drysdale don’t begrudge the modern player. Just the opposite. They lit the torch and proudly passed it along.

When they were young, there were no professional star to inspire them, no chartered planes for road trips, no state-of-the-art facilities on college campuses — not even basic equipment.

The late Pat Summitt — who made a meager $250 a month when she started at Tennessee — had to fight for athletic apparel like sports bras.

“We didn’t have trainers or anyone to tape our ankles,” said Meyers Drysdale, vice president of the Phoenix Mercury. “We didn’t have practice uniforms. You’d wear the same uniform two or three years in a row.”

For Lieberman, the soaring state of women’s basketball is a testament to her generation and a new one pushing it higher.

In recent years, the 65-year-old has bonded with Clark, and Lieberman finally got to see her play in person last week when she attended the superstar’s home finale in Iowa City. When it ended, Clark presented Lieberman with one of her game-worn jerseys.

“The greatest thing that has happened to women’s basketball for the next level of growth is Caitlin Clark, Angel Reese and some of those kiddos,” Lieberman said. “But in particular what this woman has done. She kind of did this.”

Some pioneers helped.


BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Bayou Barbie is WNBA bound.

LSU star Angel Reese formally declared for the WNBA draft less than two days after the Tigers’ season ended with a loss to Caitlin Clark and Iowa in the Elite Eight round of the women’s NCAA Tournament.

Reese made her announcement Wednesday via a photo shoot in Vogue, saying she was inspired by tennis great Serena Williams retiring in similar fashion in 2022. Reese acknowledged having made her decision to turn pro before March Madness began.

“Of course, I like to do everything big,” Reese told the magazine. “I didn’t want anything to be basic.”

“I’ve done everything I wanted to in college,” Reese added. “I’ve won a national championship, I’ve gotten (Southeastern Conference) Player of the Year, I’ve been an All-American. My ultimate goal is to be a pro — and to be one of the greatest basketball players to play, ever. I feel like I’m ready.”

Reese likely will join Clark, the expected No. 1 pick by Indiana, as one of the top players drafted on April 15.


BLACKSBURG, Va. (AP) — Virginia Tech has hired Megan Duffy of Marquette to replace Kenny Brooks as its women’s basketball coach.

Duffy guided the Golden Eagles (23-8) to their second straight NCAA Tournament this season, where the tenth-seed lost to Mississipp i, 77-65 in the opening round. She led Marquette to 110-46 record over five years, including a 64-30 record in the Big East.

Duffy has agreed to a six-year contract at Virginia Tech, the school said Wednesday.

“She is a proven winner and committed to continuing our women’s basketball program’s momentum,” athletic director Whit Babcock said in a statement. “I am confident Hokie Nation will embrace and support Megan as we enter the next chapter of Virginia Tech women’s basketball.”

Brooks, who guided the Hokies to the Final Four a year ago, left for Kentucky after the Hokies 75-72 loss to Baylor in the second-round of this season’s tournament. It was a game Virginia Tech played without injured star Liz Kitley.

Guard Georgia Amoore, who has one more season of eligibility, entered the transfer portal shortly after Brooks departed.

Duffy, who also coached for two years at Miami (Ohio), has a career record of 154-66, including six 20-win seasons.



Big East Player of the Year and Providence guard Devin Carter said Wednesday he is declaring for the NBA draft.

Carter told ESPN he is forgoing his senior year. ESPN ranks Carter No. 17 among its 100 NBA draft prospects.

Carter averaged 19.7 points, 8.7 rebounds, 3.6 assists and 1.8 steals in 33 starts this season for the Friars, who went 21-14 (10-10 in the Big East). Providence lost to Boston College in the first round of the NIT.

Carter averaged 14.1 points in 96 career games (73 starts) at South Carolina (2021-22) and Providence.

Carter is the son of Anthony Carter, who played 13 seasons in the NBA and is an assistant coach with the Memphis Grizzlies.


Florida Atlantic star guard Johnell Davis announced his plan to leave the Boca Raton school — one way or another.

Davis entered the transfer portal late Tuesday night and said he’ll also declare for the NBA draft. Davis declared for the draft a year ago but didn’t hire an agent and ultimately returned to the Owls.

If Davis passes on the draft again this year, he’ll be one of the most coveted players in the portal.

Davis, the co-Player of the Year this season in the American Athletic Conference, averaged 18.2 points and 6.3 rebounds per game this season and shot a career-best 41.4 percent from the 3-point line.

Davis is the fourth FAU player to enter the portal since coach Dusty May left to take the Michigan job.

Davis, a key player in FAU’s Final Four run in 2023-23, has averages of 11.2 points and 4.9 rebounds in 128 career games (53 starts) at FAU.

The Owls were eliminated by Northwestern in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.



CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Steve Clifford is stepping down as coach of the Charlotte Hornets after the season, the team announced.

Clifford informed the team of his decision on Wednesday. He plans to remain on in an advisory role.

Clifford is 45-112 in his two seasons of his second stint as coach of the Hornets and just 18-57 this season.

He is 337-457 in parts of 10 seasons as a head coach, most of them in Charlotte. He started as a head coach in Charlotte in 2013, then spent three seasons as coach of Orlando before returning to the Hornets.

Clifford’s contract was set to expire after the season.

This is the second major move under new owners Gabe Plotkin and Rick Schnall after Mitch Kupchak stepped down as general manager midseason and was later replaced by Jeff Peterson.

“This is the appropriate time for me to step down,” Clifford said in a statement. “I believe this is best for me and the organization. I’m excited about the future of the Hornets – our young core of players, Jeff’s leadership of our basketball operations and Rick and Gabe’s vision for the organization.”

Clifford will serve as head coach for the team’s seven remaining games. The Hornets host the Portland Trail Blazers on Wednesday night.

Peterson has known Clifford since their time together with the Brooklyn Nets and said he has tremendous respect for him.

“I understand his decision to step down,” Peterson said. “His basketball knowledge, teaching ability and work ethic are well-respected throughout the NBA. He has had to endure some very difficult circumstances the past two years, and yet our players have continued to compete, work hard and develop.”

Peterson said the Hornets will begin a search for a replacement immediately.

“We will look to hire someone that shares our values and vision in developing our young core and creating a culture and identity based on teamwork, accountability and competitiveness,” Peterson said. “We will conduct a thorough search process to select the best head coach for the Hornets moving forward.”

Clifford previously served as head coach of the Hornets from 2013-2018, leading the team to two playoff appearances. Clifford’s 241 victories as head coach are the most in Charlotte’s history.


The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame will induct Vince Carter and Chauncey Billups in its class of 2024, sources told The Athletic’s Shams Charania.

Carter played 22 seasons in the NBA – the most in league history – after the Toronto Raptors drafted him fifth overall in 1998. He was Rookie of the Year in 1999 and won the iconic 2000 Slam Dunk contest. Carter was an eight-time All-Star and is 21st on the NBA’s all-time scoring list with 25,728 points.

Billups was a five-time All-Star during his 17-year career and is currently head coach of the Portland Trail Blazers. After being selected third overall in the 1997 NBA Draft, Billups became a terrific two-way player, averaging 15.2 points and 5.4 assists while being named to two All-Defensive teams. The 6-foot-3 point guard was the Finals MVP when the Detroit Pistons won the 2004 NBA title.

The official announcement is expected to come Saturday, with the enshrinement weekend scheduled for Aug. 16-17.


If you’re a person with opinions about professional basketball, you’ve probably offered plenty about the state of NBA offense and the factors propelling its stratospheric rise. In terms of league-wide offensive rating, the last eight seasons have been the eight best in NBA history, and that trend line continues to point up, though the rate of acceleration has slowed.

We’re long past talking about shot-location optimization, which reshaped the game beginning in the aughts. As I’ve noted a few times, the league’s jump-shooting diet has largely held steady for the last half-decade; 3-point frequency is nearly identical now to what it was in 2019-20, per Cleaning the Glass. Long mid-range frequency has dipped slightly during the same timeframe but that’s offset by a similar decline in rim rate, with a bunch of those shots being relocated to the increasingly prominent floater zone. Free-throw attempt rate has also declined.

The game isn’t getting faster anymore, either; teams are actually averaging almost two fewer possessions per 48 minutes this season than they did five years ago. And still offensive efficiency keeps climbing, with the league average jumping from 110.8 to 115.8 points per 100 possessions over that span.

That’s because the skill sets of the league’s players, and the tactics teams employ in order to maximize them, continue to evolve. And one of the most interesting trends shaping the league’s present-day offensive dynamic is a gentle shift away from pick-and-roll ubiquity.

Make no mistake, the pick-and-roll is still very much the NBA’s bread-and-butter action. But after years of proliferation, it’s started to become a bit less prevalent. The league is averaging 68.8 ball screens per 100 possessions in 2023-24, the second-lowest frequency of any season in Second Spectrum’s 10-year database and down from 71.8 two years ago, according to a source with access to the data. More of the pick-and-rolls that do get run either materialize in the flow mid-possession, or are used to set up subsequent off-ball actions. Five years ago, the average team finished 18.9% of its possessions via pick-and-roll ball-handlers. That’s down to 16.1% this season, according to NBA Advanced Stats.

Some of those numbers are attributable to drive-and-kick offenses that play 5-out and can attack without screens, but that’s only a fraction of the story. In talking to coaches around the league whose teams have been at the forefront of this trend, two common threads emerged: They’ve tried to tailor schemes to personnel groups that increasingly feature playmaking big men and lethal movement shooters; and they’ve tried to wrong-foot opposing defenses with actions and rhythms that those defenses aren’t accustomed to guarding.

“For us, it’s always made a lot of sense to run Steph (Curry) and Klay (Thompson) off of screens, because of what that can do to the defense,” said Warriors coach Steve Kerr, whose team routinely ranks at or near the bottom of the league in pick-and-roll frequency and near the top in off-ball actions.

“I always hear that we’re pick-and-roll averse, but we’re really not. It’s just kind of the way Steph is. He’s not James Harden or Luka (Doncic) where he’s gonna get the shot or the assist or turnover every possession. He’s much more likely to (pass early) and then run off-ball. That’s been one of the things that has made us a little different and unique. And I’ve had a lot of coaches over the years tell me that it’s hard to prepare for, because they don’t see it a lot.”

Kerr’s fast-paced motion offense famously harnessed and melded the unique gifts of Curry, Thompson, and Draymond Green, while pinching a few concepts and actions from Gregg Popovich’s late-dynasty Spurs and from the Triangle offense Kerr once played in Chicago under Phil Jackson. In that system, Green’s often tasked with orchestrating from the top of the floor or the mid-post while Curry and Thompson skitter around setting screens, flying off pindowns, cutting backdoor, and warping defenses with their unparalleled 3-point gravity.

Obviously no team was going to fully replicate that formula; Golden State’s trio (quartet when Kevin Durant was around) is one of one. But almost every team has borrowed bits and pieces from the Warriors’ blueprint – especially their vaunted post split actions, which have become a league-wide staple.

“I know I copy a lot of stuff from around the league, I think we all copy each other,” Kerr said. “And the shooting has gotten so good now across the league that I think it’s only natural that teams are running more off-ball actions and trying to mix up their schemes.”

One team that jumped on that trend is the Sacramento Kings, helmed by reigning Coach of the Year (and former longtime Warriors assistant) Mike Brown. Brown had notable head coaching stints with LeBron James’ Cavaliers and Kobe Bryant’s Lakers before taking over in Sacramento, but when it came time to devise an offensive philosophy for a De’Aaron Fox- and Domantas Sabonis-led team replete with movement shooting, he applied his experiences from being on Kerr’s staff (and Popovich’s before that).

“In the early 2000s when I was in San Antonio, we tried to do stuff with Tim Duncan where he just wasn’t on the block all the time, because teams had been working on double-teaming the post for years,” Brown said. “And there were all types of defenses that had gone through it, everybody had the rotations down. So, you try to evolve to do things that teams don’t really have a chance to work on or defend a lot.

“Fast-forward to Golden State, and you got a guy like Steph, you got a guy like Klay, who don’t need the ball in their hands to score. And you put the right people around them, aka Draymond, and now you’re playing a style that really nobody else is playing. So you have an advantage because most of the rest of the league is working on pick-and-roll defense, because that’s what they’re facing night in night out, and you’re playing a different style. And it was a no-brainer with Domas coming to Sacramento.”

The Kings ended a 17-year playoff drought and set a record for offensive rating last year by putting everyone in motion around Sabonis, their bruising, playmaking fulcrum. This season they’re running more dribble-handoffs per possession than any team in recorded history. Brown feels that setup makes it harder for defenses to load up on his guards, namely Fox and Malik Monk.

“If you have a guard and want to give him an opportunity to not be bottled up throughout the course of a seven-game series, figure out how to get him off that ball,” Brown said.

Like the Warriors with Curry, Michael Malone’s Denver Nuggets have something of a stylistic imperative because of Nikola Jokic’s singular genius, which allowed their unique offense to take shape mostly organically. But the front office still needed the vision to put the right pieces around him, and Malone still had to draw inspiration from somewhere.

“I know for us, when I took over, the team that you wanted to copycat was San Antonio, and how they played their beautiful game – ball movement, player movement, pace, purpose,” Malone said. “Golden State kind of took it from them and ran with it and had great success. And then we’ve tried to use that.

“But more importantly, when you have a player like Nikola, for me it was just identifying who we have, and making Nikola the focal point of everything we do. From (Jokic’s second season) our team has taken off and we’ve had a real identity playing through Nikola, whether it be in the low post, the high post, the elbows, wherever it may be. Because that’s what’s best for us.”

Erik Spoelstra’s Miami Heat also spent years cutting against the grain, eschewing heliocentrism and endless spread pick-and-roll in favor of an egalitarian system with whirring off-ball activity. The Heat haven’t been as successful at it as the Warriors or Nuggets, because they don’t have Curry or Jokic, but they squeeze the most out of their personnel and always level up in the playoffs.

“It’s the nature of everything, right?” Spoelstra said. “If everybody’s doing the same thing, you try to find the advantages by doing something else. The league, this game, constantly evolves. And you’re constantly trying to (stay ahead of the curve).”

In using center Bam Adebayo as a high-post hub with shooters and cutters zooming around him, the Heat also helped ingrain delay and DHO-centric offense in the league’s fabric.

“It feels to me like almost every team is running delay stuff, which is more dribble-handoff oriented than pick-and-roll oriented,” said Kerr. “You know, 5-out, where the ball is swung and then you’ve got a DHO on the other side. That stuff is hard to guard, and there are a lot of wrinkles you can run out of that.”

It’s hard to stay ahead of that curve for long. Ask Brown, who believes the rest of the league has “100%” caught up to how the Kings play already. That’s partly illustrated by the fact they’ve slipped from first to 13th in offensive rating, while four teams are currently bettering the record they established last season.

“It’s a copycat league,” Brown said. “And I’m not saying I invented this, because I didn’t. I learned a lot from Steve and from Steph and Draymond and Klay. I took a lot of it with me, formulated my own opinion, and formulated the offense that we’re running now. (Assistant coach) Jay Triano brought in some ideas, and Luke Loucks, and we had the No. 1 offense in the history of the game last year. So, there are people that took some of it. The league has gone that way, for sure.”

Copycatting doesn’t only apply to the here and now; one way coaches can keep things fresh is by mining the rich repository of basketball history. Even the most cutting-edge offenses borrow heavily from age-old systems and principles, many of which were themselves invented as antidotes to the offensive sameness of their day.

“It’s interesting,” Kerr said. “I always think that the game evolves and gets better – skills get better, players get better – and then inevitably there’s a return to principles and, you know, how the game was played 30 years (ago). We’re constantly sort of going back to stuff that has worked.”

Plenty of teams play out of triangle and Princeton concepts; they’ve just stretched the configurations out wider to encompass the 3-point line. It’s a dash of old-school tactics blended with the league’s new-age skill sets.

“A lot of stuff that (gets) reused offensively is part of the Princeton offense, and Princeton offense is not new in the league,” explained Raptors coach Darko Rajakovic, whose own scheme features Princeton shades. “You had during the 90s (and early 2000s) Rick Adelman running that with the Kings, playing Vlade Divac at the elbows. But the game has changed so much, and the skill of the players has changed so much, it’s become so hard to guard all that movement and passing and shooting.”

An upshot of this stylistic shift is that the league’s averaging way more assists per 100 possessions this season (27.0) than in any other season in history. The gap between this year and the next-highest assists-per-100 campaign (25.7 in 1987-88) is equivalent to the gap between ’87-88 and the 22nd-ranked season on that list, per Basketball Reference. And while there’s some selection bias in spotlighting a stat that depends on made field goals, we can also see that there’s been a significant uptick in the proportion of baskets that are assisted.

The current median team assist rate is 63.4%, by far the highest in’s 28-year database.

Big men account for a huge chunk of that increase.

When illegal defense rules were scrapped over two decades ago, it opened a Pandora’s box of zones and help concepts that set the post-up on a path of steady decline. Bigs took a while to adjust as the game migrated out to the perimeter and became increasingly hostile to back-to-the-basket scorers. But in some ways that environment helped pressurize them into the diamonds we see today.

Uber-skilled, sweet-passing centers started showing up in droves, from Jokic to Joel Embiid to Sabonis to Adebayo to Alperen Sengun to Victor Wembanyama. The first 15 years after the rule change featured only seven qualified individual seasons in which a player listed by Basketball Reference as either a center or forward/center averaged four or more assists. In the seven years since, there have been 27 such seasons.

From the high post, a team can work that DHO game or run all manner of off-ball action, orchestrated by a player who can see the whole floor. If their big man is a gifted playmaker, the team can effectively use passing and cutting in lieu of dribbling in order to get to the basket. That’s how the Nuggets have managed to rank top 10 in rim frequency for the last three seasons (including fourth this year) despite ranking dead last in drives in each of those seasons (which feels all the more valuable now that officials are giving drivers a less favorable whistle).

“I think it always comes down to realizing who you have as your personnel and playing to your strengths,” Malone said. “For us, that’s getting the ball moving, body movement, and being unselfish. And I think a lot more teams are trying to play that way.”

Of course, a team’s success in playing that style still depends almost entirely on who they have at the reins. As Rajakovic said of Jokic: “He makes that offense look so much better than some other teams that are running the same offense.”

The low post hasn’t entirely been left behind in this evolution, either. While today’s spacing environment hasn’t made post-ups much more frequent, it has made them a lot more effective, both as scoring mechanisms and as playmaking vehicles.

“I think we’re starting to see a little more of a post game return to the league,” Kerr said. “I don’t have the stats to prove that but it feels like more teams now are not afraid to go into the block. There’s a lot of things you can do from the post and different ways you can attack, and because teams are so 5-out oriented now, you go down to the block and there’s just less help.”

Post-ups nowadays are often used as counters to switching and cross-matching, which themselves became natural defensive counters to the increasing lethality of spread pick-and-roll. The game can be cyclical like that.

Again, the pick-and-roll remains the staple food of NBA offense. The teams mentioned here still run a ton of them, and plenty of these trends sprout from pick-and-roll initiation. But, for one thing, there’s more variety to pick-and-rolls now, with more of them featuring multiple screeners, guard screeners, or no real screen at all. And for another, teams just seem to have more non-PnR options on the menu.

Defenses are more sophisticated than ever, and offenses have to keep evolving in order to stay a step ahead. It’s hard to predict where that evolution will take us next, but if you’re seeking clues about the future, looking to the past isn’t the worst place to start.


Jalen Johnson recorded the first triple-double of his career and the Atlanta Hawks clinched a spot in the play-in tournament with a 121-113 win over the visiting Detroit Pistons on Wednesday.

Johnson scored a career-high-tying 28 points on 10-for-14 shooting while grabbing 14 rebounds and dishing out a career-high 11 assists. Dejounte Murray was the last Hawk to record a triple-double, doing so on Nov. 5, 2022.

The Pistons stayed close because of a 50-point performance by Malachi Flynn. He was 18-for-25 from the field, hitting five 3-pointers, and set a franchise record for most points scored by a reserve.

The Hawks, winners of six of their past seven games, moved into a tie with the idle Chicago Bulls for ninth place in the Eastern Conference. The victory gave Atlanta a three-game sweep of the season series with the Pistons and extended its winning streak vs. Detroit to seven games.

Celtics 135, Thunder 100

Kristaps Porzingis had 27 points, 12 rebounds and five blocked shots to help Boston clinch the No. 1 overall seed and secure home-court advantage throughout the playoffs, beating Oklahoma City at home.

Porzingis, who was 11 of 14 from the field, has scored at least 17 points in each of his past 13 games. Jayson Tatum added 24 points and Jaylen Brown added 23 for Boston.

Oklahoma City played without Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (quad contusion) and Jalen Williams (ankle sprain), the team’s top two scorers. Gilgeous-Alexander is averaging a team-high 30.3 points per game, and Williams is averaging 19.5 points per contest.

Timberwolves 133, Raptors 85

Anthony Edwards had 28 points and six assists and Minnesota pulled away for a demolition of Toronto in Minneapolis.

Naz Reid added 23 points and seven rebounds for the Timberwolves, who won their second game in as many nights. Rudy Gobert finished with 11 points and 15 rebounds.

Immanuel Quickley, Gradey Dick and Javon Freeman-Liberty scored 16 points apiece to lead the Raptors, who lost their 15th game in a row. The franchise’s worst skid was a 17-game run during the 1997-98 season.

Lakers 125, Wizards 120

Anthony Davis had 35 points to go along with 18 rebounds and all five Los Angeles starters scored in double figures as the Lakers capped a 5-1 road trip with a win at Washington.

Reserves only accounted for 12 of Los Angeles’ points, with LeBron James supplying 25 points and Rui Hachimura posting 19 on 9-of-12 shooting.

The starters’ contributions gave Los Angeles its eighth win in the past nine games while comfortably keeping the Lakers in a Western Conference play-in spot, five games ahead of Houston, the first team outside play-in position.

Grizzlies 111, Bucks 101

Jaren Jackson Jr. put up 35 points as Memphis earned a victory at Milwaukee.

GG Jackson added 15 points and 12 boards for the Grizzlies, who completed a sweep of the two-game season series with the Bucks. Jordan Goodwin contributed 13 points, 12 rebounds and seven assists.

Brook Lopez led Milwaukee with 25 points and 10 rebounds. Giannis Antetokounmpo finished with 21 points, seven rebounds and eight assists as the Bucks played without Damian Lillard, Khris Middleton and Patrick Beverley.

Suns 122, Cavaliers 101

Devin Booker recorded 40 points and eight assists and Kevin Durant added 32 points, seven assists and six rebounds as Phoenix cruised past visiting Cleveland.

Royce O’Neale had 17 points and Bol Bol scored 15 points off the bench as the Suns moved into the sixth and last automatic playoff spot in the Western Conference. Phoenix is tied with New Orleans but holds the tiebreaker edge after beating the Pelicans on Monday.

Donovan Mitchell scored 24 points, Evan Mobley had 20 points and nine rebounds and Jarrett Allen also scored 20 points for the Cavaliers, who have dropped six of their past nine games.

Nets 115, Pacers 111

Cam Thomas led Brooklyn with 27 points as the Nets defeated Indiana in New York, preventing the Pacers from moving into sole possession of a guaranteed playoff spot.

Jalen Wilson sank two free throws with seven seconds remaining to seal the victory after Tyrese Haliburton hit a 3-pointer to keep the Pacers in the game. There were four lead changes and two ties during the tightly contested fourth quarter, with neither team leading by more than six points during the frame.

The loss leaves Indiana tied for the sixth and final automatic Eastern Conference playoff position with the Miami Heat. With the Atlanta Hawks’ win over the Orlando Magic on Wednesday, the Nets were officially eliminated from postseason contention.

Trail Blazers 89, Hornets 86

Deandre Ayton’s 24 points and Scoot Henderson’s 22 points helped visiting Portland beat Charlotte and snap a 10-game losing streak.

After Henderson missed two free throws with 18.5 seconds left, the Hornets had a chance to take the lead but Brandon Miller missed on a drive in the waning seconds. Walker made two free throws for the game’s final points.

Earlier in the day, Steve Clifford said he will be stepping down as Hornets coach at the end of the season and will transition to a front office role with the organization.

Magic 117, Pelicans 108

Paolo Banchero led the way with 32 points, Wendell Carter Jr. was the game’s top rebounder as part of a double-double and Orlando scored a key victory in its battle for playoff position with a win over host New Orleans.

The Wagner brothers combined for 42 points — Franz with 24 in a starting role and Moritz with 18 off the bench — for the Magic, who won a third straight to move a half-game ahead of the idle New York Knicks) in their battle for the No. 4 playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

CJ McCollum had a season-high 36 points for the Pelicans, who dropped their third game in a row and into the seventh slot in the West.



New York Yankees outfielder Juan Soto appears destined for free agency at the end of the season, and he apparently wants a megadeal similar to Shohei Ohtani’s.

“He’s got big eyes,” a source told The Athletic’s Brittany Ghiroli.

“I think he’s after the AAV (average annual value) Ohtani has, without the deferrals.”

Ohtani signed a 10-year, $700-million contract with the Los Angeles Dodgers in December with $68 million deferred per year. His annual average salary for the purposes of calculating competitive balance tax payroll works out to $46,076,768, according to Cot’s Baseball Contracts.

Soto and his agent, Scott Boras, will seek an agreement starting at $500 million, according to industry expectations cited by Ghiroli.

The 25-year-old Soto, who slashed .417/.517/.583 in his first six games with the Yankees, is expected to test free agency, general manager Brian Cashman said in February.

“We recognized when we went into this situation that the odds are that it’s a one-year situation before free agency,” Cashman said. “Certainly, that can change, I guess, but the odds are certainly against that. He’s this close to free agency. I don’t see too many things stopping him from hitting free agency.”

Soto notably rejected a 15-year, $440-million extension from the Washington Nationals in 2022. Shortly after he turned down the offer, the Nationals traded him to the San Diego Padres. San Diego dealt Soto to the Yankees this past December after the three-time All-Star spent one-and-a-half seasons with the club.


MLB roundup: Wednesday

Shohei Ohtani hit his first home run in a Dodgers uniform as Los Angeles finished off a three-game sweep of the visiting San Francisco Giants with a 5-4 victory on Wednesday.

Ohtani went deep into the seats in right-center field in the seventh inning off Giants left-hander Taylor Rogers in his ninth game of the season, ending the longest season-opening homer drought of his major league career. Ohtani finished 2-for-4 with two runs.

The Dodgers have scored at least five runs in all nine games this season to extend their franchise record and move closer to the New York Yankees’ record of 13 games in 1932.

Tyler Glasnow (2-0) won for the second time in three starts and Miguel Rojas added a home run as the Dodgers finished 6-1 on their first homestand of the season.

Red Sox 1, A’s 0

Nick Pivetta teamed with four relievers for an eight-hit shutout as Boston completed a three-game sweep at Oakland.

Enmanuel Valdez lifted a sacrifice fly in the fourth inning for the game’s only run, allowing Pivetta (1-1) to earn the win in a pitchers’ duel with Oakland’s Ross Stripling (0-2).

Pivetta limited the A’s to five hits in five innings, and Kenley Jansen escaped a ninth-inning jam for his second save. Stripling allowed eight hits and one run in seven innings.

Astros 8, Blue Jays 0

Yordan Alvarez homered twice and finished with four hits and three RBIs as Houston beat visiting Toronto in the rubber match of a three-game set.

Jose Altuve and Jeremy Pena also went deep for Houston, while Cristian Javier (1-0) gave up one hit in five innings. The Astros outhit the Blue Jays 15-1, though Houston pitchers issued seven walks.

Chris Bassitt (0-2) allowed four runs on nine hits in 4 1/3 innings for the Blue Jays.

Guardians 8, Mariners 0

Jose Ramirez hit two doubles and had two RBIs and Logan Allen pitched 6 2/3 scoreless innings as Cleveland routed host Seattle.

Leadoff hitter Steven Kwan went 3-for-5 and scored three times for the Guardians, who took two of three games in the series. Allen (2-0) allowed four hits, walked three and struck out six.

Mariners starter George Kirby (1-1) lasted just 3 2/3 innings and was tagged for eight runs on 10 hits.

Angels 10, Marlins 2

Miguel Sano reached base four times, Patrick Sandoval rebounded from a forgettable Opening Day start and Los Angeles completed a three-game sweep of host Miami.

It was the Angels’ fourth win in a row, while the Marlins are now 0-7, the longest losing streak to start a season in franchise history.

AJ Puk (0-2) threw four innings, allowing four runs (two earned) on five hits and three walks, striking out five for Miami.

Twins 7, Brewers 3

Ryan Jeffers cranked a go-ahead three-run homer with two outs in the top of the seventh to lift Minnesota over host Milwaukee.

Jeffers’ blast capped a five-run rally that the Twins used to erase a 3-1 deficit. Alex Kirilloff and Byron Buxton opened the frame with back-to-back doubles to pull Minnesota within 3-2, and Carlos Correa tied things up with an RBI single.

Rookie Jackson Chourio hit his first major league home run as the Brewers fell short of their fourth 5-0 start in franchise history. Rhys Hoskins also went deep, and Sal Frelick went 2-for-3 with a run.

Rangers 4, Rays 1

Nathan Eovaldi tossed seven scoreless innings and Corey Seager hit his first home run of the season, lifting Texas over Tampa Bay in St. Petersburg, Fla.

In his 103-pitch second outing of the season, Eovaldi (1-0) allowed just four hits and struck out eight for the Rangers.

Aaron Civale (1-1) tossed six strong innings, allowing one run on four hits for the Rays. He struck out eight and issued a pair of walks over 87 pitches.

Yankees 6, Diamondbacks 5 (11)

Jon Berti scored the go-ahead run on a balk in the 11th inning and Aaron Judge added an RBI double to lift New York over Arizona in Phoenix.

Gleyber Torres’ single off Scott McGough (0-1) put runners on first and third to begin the 11th inning. McGough was not set when he made a pitch to Juan Soto and was called for a balk, giving the Yankees a 5-4 lead. Judge, who launched a two-run homer in the fourth inning, plated Torres with a liner to center field.

Diamondbacks rookie Blaze Alexander belted his first career homer in the second inning and Ketel Marte added a solo shot in the fifth. Marte also ripped a double in the first inning for his 1,000th career hit.

Reds 4, Phillies 1

Christian Encarnacion-Strand and Elly De La Cruz drove in runs with doubles as Cincinnati defeated host Philadelphia.

Reds starter Frankie Montas (2-0) gave up five hits and one run, with five strikeouts and three walks in 5 2/3 innings.

Phillies starter Zack Wheeler (0-1) tossed six innings and allowed three hits and three runs (one earned). He recorded 10 strikeouts and one walk.

Padres 3, Cardinals 2

Joe Musgrove held St. Louis to one run on five hits over six innings as host San Diego prevailed.

Musgrove (1-1) struck out seven and walked one for the Padres. He rebounded nicely from his first two starts this season, when he allowed nine runs on 15 hits in 8 1/3 innings.

Cardinals starter Zack Thompson (0-2) allowed three runs on five hits and four walks over five innings. He fanned five.

Orioles 4, Royals 3

James McCann delivered a walk-off two-run single to cap a late-inning comeback as host Baltimore edged Kansas City.

It was the Orioles’ second walk-off win in three days. Jordan Westburg hit a two-run homer in the ninth inning on Monday to give Baltimore a 6-4 victory.

Salvador Perez had a pair of RBI singles and Maikel Garcia hit a solo homer in the seventh for the Royals. Perez finished with three hits while Garcia and Bobby Witt Jr. had two apiece.

Nationals 5, Pirates 3

Joey Gallo had three hits, including his first home run, and Washington handed visiting Pittsburgh its first loss of the season.

The Nationals’ Luis Garcia Jr. had three doubles, drove in a run and scored twice. CJ Abrams contributed two hits and two RBIs.

Jack Suwinski homered and doubled for the Pirates, and Michael A. Taylor added a two-run single.

Cubs 9, Rockies 8

Seiya Suzuki homered and drove in four runs while Miguel Amaya added three RBIs as Chicago blew a six-run lead before squeaking out a win over visiting Colorado.

The winning rally started in the bottom of the eighth when Miles Mastrobuoni struck out but reached first on a wild pitch. Ian Happ singled Mastrobuoni to third, and Suzuki followed with a grounder to third. Catcher Jacob Stallings couldn’t hang on to Ryan McMahon’s throw, and Mastrobuoni scored the go-ahead run.

Kris Bryant’s first hit in 19 at-bats this season, an RBI single, got the Rockies on the board in the sixth. Blackmon went 3-for-5 with two RBIs, and Bryant wound up with two hits.

Tigers at Mets, ppd.

For the second day in a row, a game scheduled between Detroit and host New York was postponed because of rain.

The teams are scheduled to play a single-admission doubleheader on Thursday.

Braves at White Sox, ppd.

Atlanta’s game at Chicago was postponed due to rain, snow and a forecast of inclement weather.

With the White Sox scheduled to play in Kansas City on Thursday, the game against the Braves will be made up on June 27.



ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) — The Buffalo Bills are trading their top receiving threat, Stefon Diggs, to the Houston Texans in a deal that was agreed to on Wednesday, a person with knowledge of the discussions told The Associated Press.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the trade has not been announced. It was first reported by

As part of the deal, the Bills acquired the Texans’ second-round pick in the 2025 draft, which Houston acquired in a trade with Minnesota, the person said. Houston also acquired Buffalo’s sixth-round pick in this year’s draft, and a fifth-rounder in 2025, the person said.

Diggs’ departure from Buffalo leaves quarterback Josh Allen without his favorite target, and breaks up a tandem that has re-written the team’s passing records since the receiver’s arrival in a trade with Minnesota in March 2020. Together they transformed a Bills offense into becoming one of the NFL’s most potent, while helping Buffalo win four straight AFC East titles.

For the Texans, Diggs gives the offense another playmaker to team with Nico Collins and Tank Dell. Collins led Houston with 80 receptions for 1,297 yards and eight touchdowns last season. The Texans went worst to first in the AFC South under first-year coach DeMeco Ryans and AP Offensive Rookie of the Year C.J. Stroud.

Houston has also traded for running back Joe Mixon, along with a host of improvements on defense.

After the deal, the Texans were 15-1 to win the Super Bowl next season on FanDuel Sportsbook.

The 30-year-old Diggs has nine years of NFL experience and topped 1,000 yards in each of his past six seasons. In his first season in Buffalo, he became the Bills’ first player to lead the league in both yards receiving (1,535) and catches (127).

Diggs’ production began slipping in the second half of last season, which coincided with Buffalo firing offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey and promoting Joe Brady, who placed a renewed emphasis on the running attack. Diggs finished the season with 107 catches and 1,183 yards — both lows during his tenure with the Bills — and eight touchdowns.

He finished his time in Buffalo with 445 catches for 5,372 yards and 37 touchdowns to rank fourth on the team list. Diggs holds the top four spots on the franchise list for single-season receptions and the top-two spots for yards receiving.

Overall, he has 1,178 catches for 9,995 yards and 67 touchdowns since being selected by the Vikings in the fifth round of the 2015 draft out of Maryland.

Diggs, however, also carried over his mercurial personality that led the Vikings to trade him to Buffalo. Though voted a Bills team captain in each of the past two seasons, Diggs caused occasional stirs with several sideline outbursts and the frustration he showed after the Bills’ 2022 season ended with a 27-10 loss to Cincinnati in a divisional round playoff.

Diggs left the locker room before coach Sean McDermott had a chance to address the team, and had to be coaxed back by teammate Duke Williams. Diggs then spent the offseason posting cryptic messages on his social media accounts while declining to take part in the Bills’ voluntary offseason programs.

Confusion then arose when Diggs wasn’t present for the Bills’ first mandatory practice and McDermott said he was “concerned” about the player’s absence.

A day later, McDermott corrected himself by saying Diggs was excused from practice, but was present at the facility to discuss lingering issues that stemmed from the previous season.

The dustups led to Diggs having to several times reiterate his loyalty to the Bills, including him saying he wanted to finish his career in Buffalo.

“I take my job seriously. You can see how I play. You can see how I play. You can see how I practice,” Diggs said in November. “They’ve never questioned me as a player, and as a man of what I bring to the table. So me being fully invested has never really been in question.”

Diggs has four seasons left on his contract as part of a four-year, $96 million contract extension the player signed in August 2022.

Though trading Diggs won’t provide Buffalo much salary cap relief, his departure continues an offseason overhaul of the Bills’ roster, which was forced by the team having to slash payroll for cap reasons. Among the players cut were starting center Mitch Morse, starting cornerback Tre’Davious White and starting safety Jordan Poyer.

The team also lost No. 2 receiver Gabriel Davis to free agency.

Buffalo does return second-year receiver Khalil Shakir, who is coming off a promising season in which he started 10 games. The team also signed receivers Curtis Samuel and Mack Hollins in free agency.

Minus Diggs, the Bills are now expected to target a receiver high in this month’s draft. Buffalo opens with the 28th pick.




Robinson is an extremely twitched-up edge rusher with limited production. He has average size but is incredibly explosive. As a pass rusher, he has excellent get-off quickness, but it looks odd because of his short/choppy steps. He will cause more stress for OTs when he learns how to lengthen his stride and gain ground. He flashes a nifty two-hand swipe maneuver and a push/pull move. He has some tightness that shows up when he gets to the top of his rush. His sack production is limited, but he was very disruptive in every game I studied. He was asked to drop into coverage on occasion and looked comfortable in space. Against the run, he consistently generates knock-back versus head-up blockers, but he struggles versus angle blocks and double teams. He gets washed down the line too often. Overall, Robinson isn’t a smooth/bendy type of player, but his mix of speed and power provides a lot of disruption. 



Cooper is a long, rangy linebacker with excellent speed and coverage ability. Against the pass, he is very smooth in his drops, playing with vision and awareness. He is very comfortable in man coverage and has plenty of speed to carry tight ends up the seam. He is an explosive blitzer and has shown the ability to separate the quarterback from the ball. Against the run, he is quick to fill in the hole and displays stopping power as a tackler. He will have some fly-by missed tackles when in lateral pursuit. Overall, Cooper is an instinctive and explosive prospect who generates a bunch of splash plays. He’s ready to start right away, and I believe his best football is still ahead of him.



Mitchell has outstanding size, toughness and polish for the position. He is fast and has a long stride. He has surprisingly good route polish for a bigger receiver. He understands how to change tempo, and he’s clean getting in and out of breaks. He gave Kool-Aid McKinstry a lot of trouble in the Alabama game last September, finishing with three catches for 78 yards and two TDs. He has some wow catches on fades and 50/50 balls. He can climb the ladder, hang and finish. It looks like he gets a little lazy at times on the back side of routes, assuming the ball is going elsewhere. He doesn’t have a ton of production after the catch. Overall, though, Mitchell is an ideal X receiver. He can make plays when covered, and he’s a real weapon in the red zone.



Rakestraw is a rangy, fluid cornerback who plays with energy and toughness. He is physical in press coverage, and he stays attached underneath and vertically. He is a loose athlete who can flip his hips smoothly. He does a nice job staying on top of deep routes, and he can locate the ball. I’d like to see him do a better job of finishing with the ball instead of simply poking it away. He is awesome against the run; not only is he quick to key/read, but he attacks blockers, including offensive linemen. Watch the Georgia tape from this past November to see him thud off an offensive tackle before delivering a physical stop. He is always bouncing around; his energy is palpable through the screen. Overall, players with this profile at this position traditionally translate very well to the next level.



Barton started at left tackle during his final three seasons at Duke. Prior to that, he started five games at center, and that’s where I see him playing at the next level. He has ideal size for the position and average length. In pass protection, he is quick out of his stance, plays with knee bend and has the agility to redirect. He does struggle against power rushers. He doesn’t play long-armed, exposes his chest and gives ground. Fortunately, he loses slowly on most occasions, allowing the quarterback time to get the ball out. He is a technician in the run game. He always hits his landmarks with his hands on down blocks before sinking and driving with his lower half. He is excellent on combo blocks and he’s under control as a puller. Overall, I see Barton as an athletic center with the ability to survive at tackle if needed. 



DeJean is a playmaking cornerback with size and speed. In off coverage, he plays with his butt to the sideline and displays excellent vision. He does have a brief pause in his plant/drive before exploding and attacking the football. His production — including three pick-sixes in the 2022 season — speaks for itself. He has enough speed to carry vertical routes, but he will panic on occasion and get grabby at the catch point. He’s an outstanding blitzer, displaying timing and burst to close in a hurry. He is very willing in run support, and he’s a dependable tackler. He is also an exceptional punt returner because of his combination of speed, elusiveness and bravery. Overall, I believe DeJean could stick at cornerback, but I wouldn’t rule out a move to safety, where his strengths as a player would be featured. He reminds me of a bigger Eric Weddle coming out of college.



The Chiefs and Royals are questioning their futures in Kansas City after voters rejected the extension of a sales tax that the teams said would have assured they remain in the area.

Voters in Jackson County, Mo., voted no Tuesday on the ballot measure that would have kept a three-eights-cent sales tax for stadium financing in place for the next 40 years. The measure failed 58.1 percent to 41.9 percent.

The two teams have played at the Truman Sports Complex for more than 50 years — the Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium since 1972 and the Royals at Kauffman Stadium since 1973. The Royals want to build a new downtown stadium, and the Chiefs want to make extensive renovations at Arrowhead.

“We respect the democratic process, we respect the voters of Jackson County and the results of the election,” John Sherman, the Royals’ owner, said Tuesday night. “We’re deeply disappointed, as we are steadfast in our belief that Jackson County is far better off with the Chiefs and the Royals. This is a belief I both hold professionally and personally, as someone whose roots run deep in this town.

“We will take some time to reflect on and process the outcome and find a path forward that works for the Royals and our fans.”

Approval of the sales tax extension would have helped fund both a new Royals stadium and the Arrowhead improvements.

Sherman has said ownership of the Royals would contribute at least $1 billion to replace Kauffman, the sixth-oldest stadium in baseball. Clark Hunt, owner of the Chiefs, pledged $300 million toward $800 million for upgrades at Arrowhead, the third-oldest in the NFL.

“We’re disappointed,” Chiefs team president Mark Donovan said. “We feel we put forth the best offer for Jackson County. We were ready to extend the longstanding partnership the teams have enjoyed with this county.

“We will do, and look to do, what is in the best interest of our fans and our organization as we move forward.”

A variety of community groups in Kansas City had come out against the proposal, saying the burden was too high on taxpayers and ownership needed to do more.

“Two billion dollars in taxpayers money, man, could do a hell of a lot to develop our community,” said Michael Savwoir, a leader of KC Tenants, speaking to local Fox4 on Tuesday night. “The billionaires don’t finance my follies. Why should I finance theirs?”

Royals ownership previously said the team won’t play at Kauffman Stadium past 2030. It is expected other communities will reach out to both clubs to discuss relocation. Kansas City, Kan., has been floated as a possibility for the Chiefs.

The mayor of Kansas City, Mo., Quinton Lucas, said he is ready to go back to the drawing board with the teams.

“The people of Kansas City and Jackson County love the Chiefs and the Royals,” Lucas wrote on social media. “Today, they rejected plans and processes they found inadequate. Over the months ahead, I look forward to working with the Chiefs and Royals to build a stronger, more open, and collaborative process that will ensure the teams, their events and investments remain in Kansas City for generations to come.”

One mayor already has reached out to the Chiefs via social media. That’s Dallas mayor Eric L. Johnson, who reportedly has told local radio shows that he’d like another team to join the Cowboys in his city. The Chiefs played in Dallas before relocating.

“Welcome home, Dallas Texans! #CottonBowl,” Johnson wrote.



NHL roundup: Wednesday

Chris Kreider scored a power-play goal to snap a tie with 4:57 remaining in the third period as the host New York Rangers rallied for a 4-3 victory over the New Jersey Devils on Wednesday night in a game that began with a full-scale line brawl.

Before the scoring, both teams started their fourth lines and two seconds into the game there were five fights, highlighted by New York rookie Matt Rempe squaring off with New Jersey defenseman Kurtis MacDermid. Rempe and MacDermid were two of eight players given game misconducts once the ice was cleared.

The massive brawl stemmed from Rempe’s history with the Devils. He was ejected from the previous two meetings, and his elbow in the second period on Jonas Siegenthaler in the March 11 meeting resulted in Rempe getting a four-game suspension.

Artemi Panarin scored New York’s first goal and added an assist to raise his points total to 110 — the second-most in team history. The Rangers completed a season sweep of the Devils.

Stars 5, Oilers 0

Jake Oettinger made 35 saves and Radek Faksa had a goal and two assists as Dallas extended its winning streak to a team-record eight games with a triumph over visiting Edmonton.

Dallas is in first place in the Western Conference and remains a point behind the New York Rangers in the race for the Presidents’ Trophy. The Stars have outscored opponents 34-11 during their dominant 8-0-0 streak.

Edmonton (45-24-5, 95 points) missed a chance to reinforce its playoff position as the second-place team in the Pacific Division. The regulation loss ended the Oilers’ four-game points streak (3-0-1).

Lightning 4, Maple Leafs 1

Nikita Kucherov had three assists to set a team record with 130 points this season and Tampa Bay cruised to a victory in Toronto.

Kucherov has 42 goals and 88 assists to pass his own team record of 128 points set in the 2018-19 season. The win was the Lightning’s first in three tries against the Leafs this season and drew Tampa to within four points of Toronto for third place in the Atlantic Division.

Toronto’s Auston Matthews scored his league-leading 63rd goal of the season to tie the game 1-1 in the first period before the Lightning took the game over.

Kings 5, Kraken 2

Trevor Moore notched his second NHL hat trick to help Los Angeles end a three-game skid with a win against visiting Seattle.

Kevin Fiala had a goal and an assist and Pierre-Luc Dubois had three assists for the Kings. Adrian Kempe added a goal, and Cam Talbot made 21 saves for the victory.

Andre Burakovsky and Brian Dumoulin scored and Philipp Grubauer stopped 22 shots for the Kraken, who were officially eliminated from playoff contention.

Canucks 2, Coyotes 1

Conor Garland scored a tiebreaking goal late in the third period and Vancouver claimed a victory in Tempe, Ariz.

Canucks captain Quinn Hughes had one goal and one assist — his 70th helper of the campaign — in the victory, while goaltender Arturs Silovs made 20 saves. Vancouver had gone 1-3-0 in its previous four games.

Dylan Guenther scored the lone goal for the Coyotes, and Connor Ingram stopped 31 shots.



South Korea’s Sei Young Kim made five birdies on the front nine on Wednesday and finished with the lead after the opening round of the T-Mobile Match Play in Las Vegas.

Kim carded a 6-under-par 66 at Shadow Creek Golf Course, leaving her one stroke ahead of Rose Zhang and Danielle Kang.

Australia’s Minjee Lee, Japan’s Yuka Saso and Sweden’s Anna Nordqvist are tied for fourth at 3 under par. Denmark’s Nanna Koerstz Madsen and Germany’s Caroline Masson share seventh at 2 under, and seven players, including New Zealand’s Lydia Ko, are tied for ninth at 1 under.

Wednesday and Thursday will comprise stroke play with a cut to the top 65 players and ties after 36 holes. The field will be cut to the top eight following stroke play on Friday. Saturday morning will begin the single-elimination match-play bracket, with the semifinals taking place Saturday afternoon and the championship match contested on Sunday.

Kim capped her early birdie binge with three in a row from No. 6 to No. 8. On the back nine, she had two birdies and her lone bogey of the day at the par-4 14th hole.

“The front nine I didn’t expect I play that well,” she said. “Pretty solid round today. I’m very, yeah, happy with that.”

Kim, a 31-year-old veteran, owns 12 career LPGA victories, but none since 2020.

Zhang was 1 under par through 14 holes, then closed her round with four consecutive birdies on the front nine.

“I felt like I was just really patient out there,” the 20-year-old Californian said. “I had a really good game plan coming in it and when you’re attacking pins. You kind of can’t really go at pins on this golf course, so making sure that I have my targets and iron play was pretty exceptional. So I really gave myself as many opportunities out there.”

Kang, playing on her home course, had a round similar to Zhang’s. She was 1 under par after the back nine, then added four birdies in a bogey-free front nine.

“It challenges you a lot,” Kang said of Shadow Creek. “I’ve heard that people have complained about the greens are too firm and they wanted it softer and they commented about the format and all that, but all MGM Resorts wants to do is keep you happy and make us happy and do whatever we want.

“At the end of the week, whoever plays well is going to be happy with whatever condition and whatever has been thrown at us.”

Defending champion Pajaree Anannarukarn of Thailand is tied for 40th at 2 over par.


There are two types of golfers in the field for the Valero Texas Open: those who are already assured of a tee time at next week’s Masters, and those who must win this week to earn their invitation.

Rory McIlroy falls into the first camp, of course. Not only is the Northern Irishman the highest-ranked player in the world who will tee off Thursday at TPC San Antonio, he shoulders the added pressure of preparing for the Masters — the only prize missing from a career Grand Slam — as his major championship drought approaches 10 years.

“Good golf at Augusta feels like boring golf and I think that’s something that I’ve always struggled with because that’s not my game,” McIlroy, ranked No. 2, said Wednesday. “To me, it’s the biggest test of discipline and the biggest test of patience of the year for me.”

While he won the Dubai Desert Classic in January, McIlroy has yet to place better than T19 in five starts on the PGA Tour in 2024.

McIlroy has played the week before the Masters five other times in his career. His best showing was a second-place finish at the 2013 Valero Texas Open.

“If I realized anything over the last few years, it’s (that) I definitely play my best golf in runs, so this is the first of probably a four-week stretch for me,” McIlroy said.

“It’s nice to try to play my way into form … obviously with the main focus being getting myself ready for the Masters next week.”

McIlroy is one of 30 players in San Antonio tuning up for the Masters. That list also features top-10 golfers Brian Harman, Max Homa and Ludvig Aberg of Sweden; two-time Texas Open champion Corey Conners of Canada; and past Masters winners such as Japan’s Hideki Matsuyama, Zach Johnson and Australia’s Adam Scott.

A green jacket may be the ultimate prize, but Scott, for one, isn’t coming to the 7,438-yard, par-72 Oaks Course just to duff it around.

“As much as we all think about next week, I’m here, I want a good result,” Scott said. “I’d like to win a trophy, that’s still what I’m trying to do out here. It’s been a long time since I have lifted a trophy.”

While the Collin Morikawas and Jordan Spieths of the world try to find better form for Augusta, the other 126 players on the property know what a victory on Sunday would unlock for them.

Conners knows the feeling well. Before he won here in 2023, his breakthrough actually came in 2019 when he Monday-qualified into the field and proceeded to win his first PGA Tour title.

“I think guys who don’t have an opportunity in the (Masters) field, there’s a bright light at the end of the tunnel here,” Conners said. “If you win like I did in ’19, you punch a ticket to Augusta. I think some guys are motivated, sort of the last chance to get in the field there.”

And that opportunity exists for more than just the youngsters on tour. Veteran Billy Horschel is in danger of missing the Masters — he’s made the cut there four years running — in part because of a poor 2022-23 season.

“I’m not happy that I’m not in Augusta or any of the majors as we sit here right now, but listen, it’s my own fault,” Horschel said.

“I didn’t play well last year, but the great thing is this game of golf gives you opportunities to correct that wrong and I’m trying the best I can right now to make up for a bad year last year and get myself back to where I feel like I deserve to be in the game of golf or (where) I want to be in the game of golf.”




After posting a blowout win against the Brooklyn Nets on Monday night in Indianapolis, Indiana Pacers head coach Rick Carlisle predicted his team would face a tougher task on Wednesday against the same squad.

Carlisle was right, as a determined Nets (30-47) contingent edged the Pacers (43-34), 115-111, at Barclays Center in a down-to-the-wire game.

In the fourth quarter, trailing by five points, Pacers forward Pascal Siakam made six straight baskets and a free throw – 13 consecutive points – to give the Blue & Gold a 108-105 lead with 1:41 left. The Nets answered with a 3-pointer by Mikal Bridges and a layup from Dennis Schroder to go back up by five points before a 3-pointer from Tyrese Haliburton cut it to 113-111 with seven seconds remaining.

Nets forward Jalen Wilson then drained both his free throws after an intentional foul to seal the game.

The loss dropped the Pacers to seventh place in the Eastern Conference, a half-game behind the Miami Heat for the final automatic playoff bid. Despite winning, Brooklyn was eliminated from playoff contention on Wednesday after Atlanta beat Detroit.

Siakam led the Pacers with 26 points and nine rebounds, Haliburton scored 25 points to go with eight assists and Obi Toppin chipped in 14 points and eight boards off the bench.

Six Nets players scored in double figures, led by Cam Thomas’ 27 points (9-for-21 shooting), a career-high 22 points and 10 rebounds by rookie Noah Clowney, and Bridges’ 17 points, seven rebounds, and four assists. Schroder also had a double-double with 12 points and 11 assists and Nic Claxton finished with 14 points and 13 rebounds.

Brooklyn outshot Indiana 48.3 to 44.7 percent, including going 12-for-27 from 3-point range to Indiana’s 10-for-38 from deep. The Nets won the rebounding margin 50-45.

In a topsy-turvy first half, the Pacers led by double digits in the first quarter before the Nets matched a season-high 42 points in the second quarter to narrow the score to 62-61. The Nets also led by one after the third quarter before the teams battled in the final frame.

Pacers starting center Myles Turner did not play Wednesday due to a right index finger sprain. Jalen Smith took Turner’s spot in the first five.

After Brooklyn got off to a hot start, the Pacers used a 25-7 run – featuring scoring streaks of 11-0 and 12-2 – to build a 31-19 lead over the Nets in the first quarter.

The Nets made five of their first six shots in the game to lead 11-4. Out of a Pacers timeout, the Blue & Gold responded with a 19-2 run, where seven players recorded a basket, to go ahead 23-13 with 2:37 left in the opening frame.

Following free throws by Trendon Watford, the Pacers continued rolling as Aaron Nesmith completed an and-one and Toppin drilled a 3-pointer to extend the Pacers’ lead to 29-15. Brooklyn would finish the quarter shooting 2-for-16 as they trailed by 12 points.

The Nets shot 66 percent in the second quarter, including 6-for-11 from 3-point, to close the gap to one point. Clowney scored 13 of his points in the period, shooting 5-for-5 from the field (3-for-3 3-point).

Indiana stayed ahead by double digits until the Nets went on a 13-4 run to narrow the score to 44-41 by the halfway mark of the second quarter.

The Pacers responded with a dunk by Smith and three from Toppin off an offensive rebound to lead 49-41, but back-to-back 3-pointers by Clowney and Dorian Finney-Smith a couple of minutes later cut it to 53-52.

A free throw by Schroder and a layup from Clowney tied the game at 55 with 2:28 left in the half before Clowney hit his third three of the game to give the Nets the lead at 61-57. Toppin then drilled a 3-pointer and Haliburton converted a layup with 1.7 seconds left to put the Pacers back in front by one.

Despite the Nets leading by as many as 13 points in the third quarter, the Pacers used a late push to make it 88-87 going into the final frame.

Brooklyn started the third quarter with a 22-10 run, where Thomas scored eight points and Claxton scored six, to lead 83-70 with 4:27 on the clock.

The Pacers then answered with a 17-5 string, where Haliburton scored the final seven points in the last 1:39 of the frame, to again make it a one-point game.

Toppin completed an alley-oop pass from T.J. McConnell and Siakam got a bucket to fall to put the Pacers back ahead early in the fourth quarter before the Nets used a 10-1 run, where Bridges scored six points, to give the Nets a 98-92 lead with 7:15 remaining.

While Siakam caught fire down the final stretch, the Nets made just enough plays to escape with the win.

The Pacers will kick off their final five games of the regular season at home on Friday against the Oklahoma City Thunder. On Sunday, the Pacers host the Heat in a pivotal matchup.

Inside the Numbers

The Nets shot 19-for-27 from the free throw line, while the Pacers went 9-for-11.

Indiana outscored Brooklyn 60-54 in the paint and 21-10 in fast-break points.

The Pacers pulled down 19 offensive rebounds in the game.

No Pacers players recorded a double-double.

Three Pacers players scored in double figures. Indiana is 0-2 when fewer than four players score at least 10 points each.

The Pacers shot 39.2 percent in the second half after making 50 percent of their shots in the first half.

Brooklyn had 13 turnovers and Indiana gave up nine.

Pacers guard T.J. McConnell scored eight points, snapping his 10-game streak of posting double-digit scoring figures.

There were eight lead changes and four ties in the game.

You Can Quote Me On That

“It was an uneven compete level for us tonight. … They have a talented team and have proven they can beat anybody.” – Pacers head coach Rick Carlisle on the loss

“It’s another game we’ll have to learn from. Get in this position where every game is critical, and you’ve got a team you’ve beaten a couple times and you know you can do it. You’ve got to bear down. We had to bear down better than we did. Give them credit, they played a heck of a game.” – Carlisle on the loss

“It was just bad execution on our end. I thought the way we ended the first quarter kind of played into the second quarter. I think that gave them confidence and allowed them to kind of make their run.” — Tyrese Haliburton on the Nets second quarter

“Special player doing special things. I think we just have to get one stop to get us some momentum and we couldn’t do that.” — Haliburton on Siakam

“We’re going to have to take care of businesses these next five, starting with OKC on Friday. Everyone has to be ready to go.” — Haliburton on the remaining schedule

Stat of the Night

The Nets tied a season-high for points in a second quarter on Wednesday by scoring 42 on 16-for-24 (66.7 percent) shooting.


Tyrese Haliburton has 703 assists on the season, good for second place in the franchise’s single-season record book. Mark Jackson holds the franchise record with 713 assists in 1997-98.

Myles Turner has missed just five games this season. Indiana is 2-3 in those games.

Aaron Nemsith needs 35 points to reach 2,000 for his career.

Up Next

The Pacers return to Gainbridge Fieldhouse to host Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and the Oklahoma City Thunder on Friday, April 5 at 7:00 PM ET.



INDIANAPOLIS- The Fuel hosted the Wheeling Nailers in an important divisional matchup on Wednesday night. After a late goal to tie the game, Andrew Bellant became the savior in overtime to give the Fuel a 6-5 win.


Kyle Maksimovich opened the scoring at 6:57 with the help of Ryan Gagnier and Victor Hadfield to put the Fuel up 1-0.

Less than three minutes later, Wheeling tied the game with a goal by Davis Bunz.

Wheeling’s Justin Addamo took a cross checking penalty at 10:52 to give the Fuel a power play opportunity but the Nailers killed it off.

Andrew Bellant scored on a backhanded breakaway shot at 17:27 to give Indy their second lead of the game. This goal was unassisted.

Wheeling quickly tied it up again less than a minute later with a goal by Dillon Hamaliuk making it 2-2 before the period ended.


Just 28 seconds in, Indy’s Brett Bulmer took a tripping penalty giving Wheeling their first power play of the game which they capitalized on with a goal from Dustin Manz to make it 3-2.

At 5:08, Wheeling had another power play after Jon Martin took a cross checking penalty, however the Fuel killed it off.

Wheeling’s Justin Lee was called for tripping at 8:51 giving the Fuel another power play opportunity which they used to tie the game up, 3-3 courtesy of Ross MacDougall. Zach Jordan and Anthony Petruzzelli assisted that goal at 10:03.

At 17:42, Addamo took a tripping penalty giving the Fuel another power play however they did not score before the period ended.


At 2:26, Tanner Laderoute scored to give Wheeling the 4-3 lead but less than two minutes later, Kyle Maksimovich scored his second goal of the night to tie the game again.

At 8:55, Petruzzelli took a cross checking penalty that led to a second goal of the game from Manz on the power play. This gave the Nailers the 5-4 lead again.

With just under two minutes to go, the Fuel pulled Mitchell Weeks from goal in favor of the extra skater in an attempt to tie the game.

With about thirty seconds left, Addamo took his third penalty of the game, this time for slashing to make it 6-on-4 in favor of the Fuel.

At 19:39, Andrew Perrott capitalized on the power play with a goal to tie the game, 5-5 and send it to overtime.


After outshooting Wheeling 30-24 in regulation, the Fuel claimed all three overtime shots, with the final one being the game winning goal from Andrew Bellant. With the 6-5 win, the Fuel claimed two points while Wheeling claimed one in the tight Central division standings.

The Indy Fuel are back in action at Indiana Farmers Coliseum on Saturday, April 13 for Fan Appreciation Night against the Kalamazoo Wings.



INDIANAPOLIS – The Indianapolis Indians have announced that Wednesday night’s game vs. the Memphis Redbirds at Victory Field has been postponed due to inclement weather. The game will be rescheduled and played during the current homestand as part of a doubleheader. The exact date has not yet been determined.

The Indians opened their 2024 season at Victory Field last night and fell to the Redbirds, 7-2. The series resumes on Thursday in a 6:35 PM ET first pitch at Victory Field.



INDIANAPOLIS (Wednesday, April 3, 2024) – Indy Eleven has today announced the addition of midfielder Laurence Wootton on loan from Major League Soccer’s Chicago Fire. Per club policy, terms of the deal will not be disclosed.

Drafted 64th overall by the Chicago Fire in the 2024 MLS SuperDraft, Wootton completed a standout career at Ohio State University where he was a member of the 2023 MAC Hermann Trophy Watch List and a four-time All-Big Ten First-Team selection, one of only six players all-time to accomplish the feat.

Wootton was twice named Big Ten Midfielder of the Year (2022, 2023) and was the Big Ten Freshman of the Year in 2021. The Burton-on-Trent, England, native played in 63 matches at Ohio State and tallied 18 goals and six assists.

Prior to his time in Columbus, Wootton played for Cardiff City’s Reserve Team following three years with the Cardiff City Academy and 10 with Stoke City Academy.

In an additional roster move, Indy has released defender Jay Klein.

Indy Eleven Roster as of 4-3-24

Goalkeepers (4): Cayden Crawford^, Yannik Oettl, Hunter Sulte*, Hayden Vostal^

Defenders (9): Danny Barbir,Younes Boudadi, Callum Chapman-Page, Adrian Diz Pe, Macca King, Maverick McCoy^, Logan Neidlinger^, Josh O’Brien, Aedan Stanley

Midfielders (9): Jack Blake, Tyler Gibson, Nikola Ivetic^, Cam Lindley, Ethan O’Brien, Aodhan Quinn, Diego Sanchez, Max Schneider, Laurence Wootton*

Forwards (8): Benji Chavarria^, Elliot Collier, Sebastian Guenzatti, Karsen Henderlong, Tega Ikoba*, Douglas Martinez, Roberto Molina, Augi Williams

^USL Academy Contract | *Player on Loan

Indy heads south to take on Louisville City FC Saturday in the first leg of the LIPAFC rivalry. Kick is slated for 4 p.m. ET and the match will air nationally on CBS and SiriusXM Channel 157.



BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – One of the most prolific young liberos in the country, Indiana freshman Ramsey Gary was selected to the 20-member 2024 US Women’s U21 National Team, as announced by USA Volleyball on Wednesday (April 3) afternoon.

The Pendleton, Ind. native played all 33 contests as a freshman in 2023, wearing the libero jersey for every point of the season. She proceeded to break both the IU freshman and all-time single season digs record, tallying 530 in her debut campaign.

She is one of seven current Big Ten athletes selected to the 20-person training camp. All three liberos invited to the camp are from the conference, including Nebraska’s Laney Choboy and Oliva Mauch.

Gary, along with the other 19 members of the Women’s U21 National Team, will attend a nine-day training camp in Anaheim, Calif. this summer (June 14-22). From there, 12 players will be selected to compete at the 2024 U21 NORCECA Women’s Continental Championship in Toronto, Canada (June 23-July 1).

The U21 National Team has a long track record of performing well on the world stage and providing young players a boost to join the senior women’s team. Three Big Ten players helped lead the United States to gold at last year’s Women’s U21 NORCECA Pan American Cup.

An Under Armour All-American out of high school, Gary lived up to every bit of hype as a freshman in college. She was a unanimous selection to the Big Ten All-Freshman Team and earned a nod as a Second Team All-Big Ten selection. She finished second among all freshmen in the NCAA with 530 digs and was an AVCA Northeast All-Region honorable mention selection.

Gary is among a collection of key returnees for the Hoosiers in 2024. She forms one of the most dynamic setter-libero combinations in the entire country with setter Camryn Haworth. IU is also aided by the return of its top three pin hitters in Avry Tatum, Candela Alonso-Corcelles and Morgan Geddes.



WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – For the second straight year, Zach Edey was tabbed the NABC (National Association of Basketball Coaches) National Player of the Year, the organization announced earlier today.

The NABC honor is the second one won this season after being named the recipient of The Sporting News’ highest honor last month. Edey has now been named the NPOY in the first two of the six organizations that have handed out NPOY accolades.

Dating to last year, Edey has now won all eight major National Player of the Year accolades that have been handed out as he has a chance to become the first unanimous (winning all of them) back-to-back National Player of the Year honoree since Bill Walton in 1972 and 1973. The four remaining National Player of the Year awards come from the Associated Press, the Naismith Award, the Wooden Award and the United States Basketball Writers Association.

Edey is the first Purdue player to earn back-to-back consensus first-team honors since Rick Mount in 1969 and 1970. Edey, Mount and Terry Dischinger (1961, 1962) are the only two-time consensus first-team All-Americans in school history.

Entering the Final Four, Edey has dominated all season long, averaging 25.0 points, 12.2 rebounds, 2.2 blocks and 2.1 assists per game in all games played.

Edey is one of seven players in NCAA history to tally at least 925 points and 450 rebounds in a season, ranking third in Purdue history in points and first in rebounds in a season. He is already the first one to add 50 assists and 50 blocked shots to the total.

Edey has produced against the nation’s best teams, averaging a combined 41.0 points, rebounds and assists against high-major opposition, currently the first player in at least the last 15 years to average a combined 40 points, rebounds and assists against high-major opposition.

Edey Leads the country in 30-10 games with nine (next closest is 3) and 20-10 games with 24.

He is the first player since Oscar Robertson (1960) to lead the country in scoring and lead his team to the Final Four.

Edey is the first player in Big Ten history with 2,400 career points and 1,200 career rebounds, and has joined David Robinson (Navy, 1984-87) as the only players in NCAA history with 2,400 career points, 1,200 career rebounds, 200 career blocks and to shoot over 60.0 percent from the field. He currently ranks third in both career points (2,459) and career rebounds (1,299) in Big Ten history.

Edey has dominated the NCAA Tournament so far, being one of four players (Edey, Elvin Hayes, Jerry West, Wilt Chamberlain) to average at least 30.0 points and 15.0 rebounds in the first four NCAA Tournament games. He has tallied five straight games of at least 20 points and 10 rebounds in the NCAA Tournament, which is tied for the longest streak in NCAA history with Navy’s David Robinson (1986).

With his 40-point, 16-rebound performance against Tennessee, Edey is one of six players, and the first since 1990, with a 40-point, 15-rebound games in NCAA Tournament action. He is the first player to do so in a Regional Final.

Edey and the Boilermakers will battle North Carolina State in the National Semifinal on Saturday at State Farm Arena in Phoenix.


In the estimation of head coach Matt Painter, Purdue reached the Final Four by not running from adversity.

Painter said the Boilermakers (33-4) were not necessarily driven by past tournament failures, well-worn issues such as handling pressure and perimeter shooting, but they took a full, honest measurement of their NCAA Tournament misfortune.

“Just a purpose,” Painter said. “There’s no doubt when you have that adversity, you have to face that adversity. I think that’s something that we really talked about this year is not getting away from that. Sometimes when people say derogatory things about you, it upsets you. But when it’s true — make some adjustments to that.”

One significant modification was the concerted effort to improve as a 3-point shooting team. Purdue is No. 1 in the nation with a 40.6 3-point percentage, averaging 8.3 made 3s per game. Last season? Purdue was in the 300s nationally at 32.2 percent and 6.8 per game.

In the past three NCAA Tournaments, the Boilermakers fell far short of expectations with losses to 16 seed Fairleigh Dickinson last year, to 15 seed Saint Peters in the Sweet 16 in 2022 and to 13 seed North Texas in overtime in 2021.

Painter’s record of 91-18 over the past three seasons is among the best in college basketball. Only Houston’s Kelvin Sampson has won at least 29 games each of the past three years.

By comparison NC State lost 14 games — and won 26 — this season

But the novelty of playing in April puts Painter and Purdue in unfamiliar territory ahead of Saturday’s date with the Cinderella team of the 2024 tournament, North Carolina State. Other than highlights of athletic 275-pound big man D.J. Burns, Painter hadn’t seen much of this iteration of the Wolfpack until this week’s cram session began.

“We’ve actually played NC State a couple years ago in Brooklyn and they maybe have a guy — two guys? — still there from that team,” Painter said.

From his perspective, matching the narrative he’s shared all season, Painter said the two remaining games aren’t about scouting reports for Purdue. He’s told the team repeatedly to keep the focus on being the best version of themselves, from All-American, 7-foot-4 center Zach Edey to the end of the bench.

“It’s the first time in my coaching career, this is my 31st year, that I’ve had a practice in April,” Painter said. “We’ve been to a lot of tournaments. We’ve been to a second weekend. To be able to get to a Final Four, get to Phoenix and nice weather — it’s pretty cool.”

Edey helps create open looks for Purdue’s perimeter shooters. Virtually unstoppable without a double-team, he averages 25 points, 12.2 rebounds and 2.2 blocks per game this season and is the central focus of NC State’s game plan on both ends of the court.

Wolfpack coach Kevin Keatts is in the Final Four for the third time after previous visits as an assistant. But he said the current trip is beyond unique.

“This one is different than anything I’ve ever been around. Nine elimination games,” Keatts said. “Think about that. Winning five games starting on Tuesday as a No. 10 seed (in the ACC tournament), and to go through the really good teams at the back end of it. If you lose any of those games, you don’t get into the NCAA (Tournament). After that, you’ve got four games. We all now if you lose in the NCAA Tournament you go home. I don’t know if I’ve ever seen a run similar to this.”


PHOENIX, Ariz. – After arriving for the Final Four on Tuesday evening, the Boilermakers spent a quiet day in Phoenix, before ramping up preparations on Thursday for Saturday’s National Semifinal contest against North Carolina State, tipping off at 6:09 p.m. ET.

Purdue will run through a gauntlet of media requests and specialty shoots before practicing in State Farm Stadium late Thursday morning.

On Friday, the Boilermakers’ will repeat the process before holding an open practice from Noon to 1 p.m. PT, at State Farm Stadium. Nearly 65,000 fans are expected to be in attendance for Saturday’s semifinal showdown with the Wolfpack.

• TICKETS: Tickets through the Purdue Athletics ticket office are sold out, but we encourage fans to use trusted third-party sites such as SeatGeek to purchase tickets: SeatGeek

• NCAA FAN FEST: Fans are encouraged to attend the NCAA Final Four Fan Fest at the Phoenix Convention Center all week in Phoenix. Admission is free if you have a ticket to the games. Final Four Fan Fest

• NCAA MARCH MADNESS MUSIC FESTIVAL: A three-day music festival starting Friday and featuring Mumford and Sons, the Jonas Brothers, ZEDD and the Black Keys is free to attend and takes place at Hance Park in Phoenix. NCAA March Madness Music Festival

• POSTSEASON CENTRAL: All the information on ticketing and fan gatherings found here: Postseason Information

• OPEN PRACTICE: The Boilermakers will hold an open practice to all fans on Friday, April 5, at Noon PT at State Farm Stadium. No ticket is needed for entrance to the practice.

• JOHN PURDUE CLUB FAN GATHERINGS: The John Purdue Club will host four events to members only during the week in Phoenix, starting April 5, with a party sponsored by Harry’s Chocolate Shop and featuring special guest Bruce Barker the Piano Man. Before Saturday’s game, the Purdue For Life Foundation will host a pregame gathering from noon to 2 p.m. PT. Sunday’s gathering will be a Boilermaker Brunch and Monday’s fan gathering will be prior to the National Championship game. For more information or how to become a member of the John Purdue Club for entrance to these events, visit the John Purdue Club website: Join the John Purdue Club

The Boilermakers and South Region Champion North Carolina State Wolfpack will tip in the National Semifinals on Saturday at 6:09 p.m. ET / 3:09 p.m. PT. The winner will play the winner of Connecticut and Alabama in Monday night’s National Championship game.


• Purdue is looking to make its second appearance in the National Championship game, last making the final game of the season in 1969.

• Purdue’s 85-point victory margin in the first four games is tied for the third largest through four games in NCAA Tournament history (2024 UConn – 111; 1967 UCLA – 95).

• Purdue’s +71 rebound margin entering the Final Four is the largest rebound margin through four games in NCAA Tournament history.



No. 11 Ball State (18-9, 11-3 MIVA)  vs. Quincy (5-17, 1-13 MIVA)

Series History: Ball State has won 59 of 64 all-time meetings and has won the last nine.

Last Meeting: Ball State 3, Quincy 0 (2/23/24)

No. 11 Ball State (18-9, 11-3 MIVA)  vs. McKendree (14-9, 8-6 MIVA)

Series History: Ball State leads the all-time series 14-7

Last Meeting: McKendree 3, Ball State 0 (2/9/24)

Setting the Scene:

Coach Cruz: Ball State head coach Donan Cruz enters his third season at the helm of the Cardinals and owns an overall record at BSU of 61-22 (.734) along with a Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association (MIVA) Tournament Championship, two MIVA regular season titles and an NCAA Tournament appearance.

Match Recap: Ball State split its two-match series at Lewis last weekend winning 3-2 on Thursday and then falling to the Flyers, 2-3 on Saturday. Tinaishe Ndavazocheva led the Cardinals offensively this weekend with a total of 43 kills while averaging 4.30 kills per contest. Ndavazocheva turned in a .315 hitting percentage off 92 swings.

Scouting Quincy and Mckendree:  Quincy has only one MIVA victory under its belt thus far this season after defeating Queens University on Feb. 3, 3-2. The Hawks recently fell in a 3-0 sweep at home against Purdue Fort Wayne on Saturday. McKendree is one of only three MIVA teams that have handed the Cardinals a loss this season in league play after earning a 3-0 sweep over BSU on Feb. 9. A Ball State victory over either team will secure the Cardinals at least a share of the 2024 MIVA regular season title.

MIVA Tourney Time:  If the Cardinals win one of their matches this weekend they will earn at least a share of the MIVA regular season title marking the third-straight year Ball State has been crowned the MIVA regular season champions. The last time Ball State won three-straight regular season titles was in 1995, 1996 and 1997. The most they have won in a row is four. Win or lose, Ball State has already locked up the right to host its MIVA Tournament quarterfinal game which will be next Saturday, April 13 in Worthen Arena.

Ndavazocheva Earns MIVA Offensive Player of the Week:  Ndavazocheva led the Cardinals to a 3-0 victory over Quincy. The junior outside hitter had 15 kills on 22 attempts with just one error, working out to a .636 hitting percentage. He added an ace in the win. His 15 kills averaged to 5.00 per set.

Rogers MIVA Offensive Player of the Week:  Patrick Rogers led No. 13 Ball State to a pair of wins over Purdue Fort Wayne and then-No. 10 Loyola Chicago. The sophomore outside hitter totaled 40 kills in eight sets for a 5.00 average per set while hitting .395 for the week. Against the Mastodons, he had 22 kills in three sets on a blistering .515 hitting clip then followed it up with 18 kills on .302 hitting in five sets against the Ramblers. He added an ace against the Mastodons.

Rogers Has a Standout Week: Rogers led Ball State with 41 kills last week while hitting an impressive .453 from the floor off of 75 swings. Rogers also averaged 5.86 kills per set. Rogers began the week with a career best 24 kills in a 3-1 win over rival Ohio State while tallying a .383 hitting percentage. On Saturday, Rogers continued his strong offensive showing with 17 kills off a .571 hitting accuracy on 28 total attacks. Rogers also served up an ace as the Cardinals swept Lindenwood to remain atop of the MIVA standings.

The Legend Don Shondell: The Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association has announced changes to the MIVA Tournament format. The conference has also announced that future tournament winners will receive the Don Shondell MIVA Championship Trophy.

The MIVA Tournament has been played after every regular season since 1980 except 2020 and was also played from 1964-69. The new format for the MIVA Tournament will reward the highest seeds, providing an advantage for a path to the NCAA tournament via the MIVA’s automatic bid.The opening round of the eight-team tournament will be played at the higher four seeds. No. 1 will host No. 8, No. 2 will host No. 7, No. 3 will host No. 6, and No. 4 will host No. 5.

The semifinal and final rounds will be hosted by the highest remaining seed in the field. The field will also re-seed. The highest remaining seed will host the lowest remaining seed and the other two teams will play in the other semifinal. The two winning teams will play in the final match for the Don Shondell MIVA Championship Trophy.



The spring practice phase of preparation for the 2024 Ball State football season concludes this Saturday at 11:00 a.m., at Scheumann Stadium, when the Cardinals don red and white uniforms for their annual spring football game. Admission is free.

Essentially a controlled practice with periods of contact, the spring game marks the end of a seven-week slate of 15 practices sandwiched around spring break. Coach Mike Neu and his staff have had roughly three months to evaluate new personnel and the development of youngsters grappling for playing time in the upcoming season.

Returning quarterbacks Kiael Kelly and Kadin Semonza will direct the offense during Saturday’s workout. Transfer All-American Jon Mucciolo and returning starter Taran Tyo lead the offensive line, while 2022 Freshman All-American Tanner Koziol leads a deep receiving unit at tight end. Running routes will be returning starters Qian Magwood, Ty Robinson and Malcolm Gillie, along with heralded transfer Justin Bowick. The Cardinals’ biggest question mark may be in the backfield, following the departure of Marquez Cooper. Leading the cast this spring have been redshirt freshman T.J. Horton and returner Charlie Spegal.

Defensively, work has been done in the offseason to replace a senior-laden defensive line and backfield. Senior linebacker Keionte Newson anchors an experienced linebacking unit that includes returners Brandon Berger, Joey Stemler, Jack Beebe and Jackson Wiegold. The secondary is young but boasts a bevy of stars who drew considerable playing time last season. Among them are Jahmad Harmon, Marion Ponds, Jordan Coleman and Thailand Baldwin. Playing time on the line will be earned by work in the spring and the summer, with returning nose tackle Kyron Mims leading the unit alongside backup Drew Hughes.

Ball State got consistent and steady production out of its special teams last season. Once again, those units will be led by sophomore kicker Jackson Courville, senior punter Lucas Borrow and senior long-snapper Tucker Dunn.

Following summer workouts, Ball State opens its 2024 campaign on Saturday, Sept. 7 at home against Missouri State. The Cardinals host five home games including Community and Family Weekend, Oct. 5 vs. Western Michigan, and Homecoming on Oct. 26 against Bronze Stalk rival Northern Illinois.



ANN ARBOR, Michigan – – The Ball State gymnastics team turned in another strong team performance Wednesday afternoon at the Crisler Center, unfortunately it was not enough to advance as the team suffered a 195.825 to 195.775 setback to Illinois in the first round of the NCAA Ann Arbor Regional.

“Overall, we had a solid performance,” head coach Joanna Saleem said. “There were mistakes made, but it’s such a better team than we’ve had in the fact they can handle those mistakes and push each other. Their approach for postseason this year was way more competitive, and I told them at the end that this continues to build the program.”

While the team portion of the season is over, the Cardinals will still have five individuals competing in Thursday’s night session in the regional’s second round.

“It didn’t end the way we wanted it to today, but it continues to build because now they can understand how close a half tenth is,” Saleem added. “Every routine out there could have found a half tenth. That’s something as a group we have to learn how to continue to work on the details throughout the year and continue to be hungry and aggressive until the very last routine.”

Set to represent Ball State starting at 7 p.m. tomorrow will be sophomore Zoe Middleton in the all-around, senior Suki Pfister on vault and floor, senior Victoria Henry on vault, graduate student Megan Teter on bars and freshman Ashley Szymanski on bars.

Wednesday’s meet was highlighted by Pifster winning her eighth vault competition of the season, adding to her lore with another score of 9.900.

In addition, Middleton would go on to capture the all-around title with a score of 39.275, while tying for the win on beam with her 9.850. Her day also included countable scores of 9.825 on vault and 9.800s on both bars and floor.

“There were some awesome things about today,” Saleem concluded. “Suki’s vault was amazing and Zoe putting together a solid meet and going out there and winning the all-around. Grace Sumner finishing strong, in fact, the whole beam group came over and did a tremendous job of staying focused on us and doing they gymnastics we are capable of doing.”

ROTATION 1 – BARS (48.800)

Ball State opened the day with a 48.800 on bars, led by scores of 9.800 by both Middleton and Teter.

The Cardinals also counted 9.750s from senior Hannah Ruthberg and freshman Ava Molina, as well as a 9.700 from freshman Ashley Szymanski.

ROTATION 2 – VAULT (49.100)

The Cardinals shined in the second rotation, with Pfister winning the event with a 9.900. The effort helped BSU post a 49.100 as a team.

Henry and Middleton were right behind, tying for second overall with scores if 9.825. Throw in a 9.800 from Ruthberg and the Cardinals had the four highest scores on vault for the day.

Junior Carissa Martinez turned in Ball State’s final countable score with a 9.750.

ROTATION 3 – FLOOR (48.900)

Ball State added three more scores of 9.800 on floor, with Ruthberg, Pfister and Middleton each hitting the mark. The effort helped net the Cardinals a team score of 48.900 in the event.

The Cardinals also counted routines of 9.750 from both Teter and Henry.

ROTATION 4 – BEAM (48.975)

Junior Grace Sumner provided one of the day’s biggest highlights for the Cardinals, ending BSU’s portion of the competition with a 9.850 to tie for first on beam with Middleton and Amelia Knight from Illinois.

The Cardinals also counted 9.775s from both Szymanski and Ruthberg, as well as a 9.725 from Henry.


In addition to Middleton claiming the all-around title with a 39.275, Ruthberg took second with her 39.125 which included 9.800s on both vault and floor, along with a 9.775 on beam and a 9.750 on bars.



Indiana State Sycamores (32-6, 19-4 MVC) vs. Seton Hall Pirates (24-12, 13-8 Big East)

Indianapolis; Thursday, 7 p.m. EDT

BOTTOM LINE: Seton Hall and Indiana State meet in the National Invitation Tournament.

The Pirates are 13-8 against Big East opponents and 11-4 in non-conference play. Seton Hall averages 73.6 points and has outscored opponents by 3.9 points per game.

The Sycamores are 19-4 against MVC opponents. Indiana State is the leader in the MVC scoring 10.6 fast break points per game.

Seton Hall’s average of 6.2 made 3-pointers per game is 1.1 fewer made shots on average than the 7.3 per game Indiana State allows. Indiana State has shot at a 50.6% rate from the field this season, 8.5 percentage points greater than the 42.1% shooting opponents of Seton Hall have averaged.

TOP PERFORMERS: Kadary Richmond is scoring 15.6 points per game and averaging 6.8 rebounds for the Pirates. Al-Amir Dawes is averaging 2.9 made 3-pointers over the last 10 games.

Isaiah Swope is shooting 35.9% from beyond the arc with 3.1 made 3-pointers per game for the Sycamores, while averaging 15.8 points. Ryan Conwell is shooting 56.2% and averaging 20.3 points over the past 10 games.

LAST 10 GAMES: Pirates: 7-3, averaging 74.7 points, 34.6 rebounds, 13.5 assists, 8.0 steals and 5.1 blocks per game while shooting 45.6% from the field. Their opponents have averaged 71.4 points per game.

Sycamores: 9-1, averaging 87.3 points, 34.4 rebounds, 19.6 assists, 6.3 steals and 1.9 blocks per game while shooting 51.8% from the field. Their opponents have averaged 75.9 points.



TERRE HAUTE, Ind.- Indiana State Softball will travel to Murray, KY for a three-game MVC series this weekend, where play begins Friday, April 5 at 6 p.m ET. All three games will have live stats available and steamed on ESPN+.

The Sycamores (13-18, 2-6) are coming off of an 0-3 weekend where they fell to Belmont in a three-game series. Indiana State is third in the MVC in batting where they have a team average of .262, which consists of 212 hits, 126 runs scored, 34 doubles, 13 home runs, 109 RBIs, and 289 total bases. Indiana State’s doubleheader against Illinois scheduled for April 3 was canceled due to weather.

Murray State (16-19, 4-6) is coming off of a 1-2 weekend where they fell to Missouri State in a three-game series. The Racers are fourth in the conference in pitching with a 2.72 ERA in 35 games played.

Murray State leads the all-time series over the Sycamores 3-2 where Indiana State won the most recent matchup in May of the 2023 season in 12 innings to advance to the MVC semifinals. In a three and a half hour game, the No. 5 seed Indiana State knocked off the No.4 seed Murray State and the victory tied the program record for wins in a season, with 31.This win over the Racers was the first time Indiana State had won two games in an MVC Tournament since 2019 and the first time the Sycamores had advanced to the semifinal round since they won the entire tournament in 2015.

Sycamore Standouts:

Abby Robakowski leads the Sycamores offensively and is ranked fourth in the MVC with a .377 batting average which consists of 26 hits, three doubles, three home runs, six runs scored, and 18 RBIs. Robakowski currently has a three-game hitting streak and a five-game reached base streak.

Abi Chipps is fourth in the MVC in hits, with 36, and in 102 lead off at bats, Chipps has only four strikeouts in the 2024 season and she recorded her first triple of the season in Sunday’s 10-3 loss against Belmont. Chipps leads the Sycamores in stolen bases, with 11.

Isabella Henning recorded her third home run of the season on Friday afternoon in the 2-1 loss against Belmont. I. Henning is second in the MVC in doubles, where she has 11.

Seven Sycamores record home runs in the 2024 season, which come from Abby Robakowski, Kennedy Shade, and Isabella Henning each with three, while Danielle Henning, Livi Colip, Haley Webb, and Randi Jo Pryor each record one.

In the circle:

Hailey Griffin (3-4) leads the Sycamore pitching staff with a .339 ERA where she has struck out 45 batters in the 2024 season.

Lauren Sackett (6-9) with a 4.24 ERA leads Indiana State’s pitching staff with 54 strikeouts in 66.0 innings of work and 18 appearances.

Scouting Murray State:

Lily Fischer leads the Racers in batting with a .280 average, which consists of 28 hits, six doubles, one triple, one home run, 11 RBIs, and ten runs scored. Fischer recorded her first triple of the season in the 4-3 victory over Missouri State on Saturday followed by a 2 RBI single. Fischer leads the conference in assists, with 105 on the 2024 season.

Jenner Veber (12-6) leads the pitching staff and is ranked second in the MVC with a 1.33 ERA in 115.2 innings of work. Veber has struck out 60 batters in the 2024 season in 25 appearances.

Up Next:

Indiana State will travel to West Lafayette on Wednesday, April 10 to compete in a non-conference game at 5:30 p.m ET against Purdue University.



FORT WAYNE, Ind. – The Purdue Fort Wayne softball team will host Robert Morris this weekend (April 5-6). The games will be played at Indiana Tech’s Warrior Park. 

Game Day Information
Who: Robert Morris
When: Friday, April 5, 3 PM | Saturday, April 6, 1 PM (DH)
Where: Fort Wayne, Ind. | Indiana Tech
Live Stats: Link
Watch: Game 1 | Game 2 | Game 3

Know Your Foe

Robert Morris is 9-13 on the season and 4-2 to start Horizon League play. The Colonials swept IUPUI last weekend and picked up a win in one of the three games against Green Bay. Robert Morris is getting a lift from key freshman during the beginning of this season. Kaylyn Hopf has a team-best .352 batting average. Kailani Tatro is the Colonials’ best pitcher, with a 3.04 ERA and is 2-2 on the season.

Series History

Robert Morris leads the series 10-4. The Mastodons took one game during last year’s three-game series.

Bailey Banter

Bailey Manos is batting a team-high .309 this season for a total of 29 hits, ranking seventh in the Horizon League. Manos is also tied for fifth in the Horizon League in stolen bases with five.

Hollopeter Hoopla

Grace Hollopeter has nine doubles on the season, the most in the Horizon League. She has three home runs with a team-high 14 RBIs. Her three home runs are tied for fifth-most in the HL.

A Lineup Not Out of Left Field

Three Mastodons have started all 28 games this season in the same field position: McKenna Minton (left field), Gwen McMenemy (right field), Bailey Manos (center field).

Perfect Play

McKenna Minton and Epiphany Hang both hold a 1.000 fielding percentage, two of the three players in the Horizon League that remain perfect.

You’re Out

Alanah Jones is second in the Horizon League with 70 strikeouts this season.

Rudd Light, Green Light

In league play, Aglaia Rudd has led the Mastodons with a .400 batting average.

Last Time Out

The Mastodons lost all three games in the series at Northern Kentucky last weekend.

Up Next

The ‘Dons will hit the road for a three-game series at Cleveland State next Tuesday and Wednesday (April 9-10).



FORT WAYNE, Ind. – The Purdue Fort Wayne men’s volleyball team will welcome No. 14 Lewis and Quincy this weekend. Saturday’s match will be Senior Day for the Mastodons.

Game Day Information
Who: No. 14 Lewis Flyers and Quincy Hawks
When: Thursday, April 4 – 7 PM | Saturday, April 6 – 5 PM
Where: Gates Sports Center
Live Stats: Link
Watch: YouTube
Game Notes: Purdue Fort Wayne | Lewis | Quincy | MIVA

Know Your Foes

• Lewis is 15-12 and 8-6 in the MIVA. The Flyers beat Purdue Fort Wayne 3-1 at home earlier in the season. Lewis is led by Max Roquet, who is averaging 3.6 kills per set this season. Roquet had 18 kills, while hitting .389, to go along with seven digs in the last matchup against the mastodons.

• Quincy is 5-17 and 1-13 in the MIVA. The Hawks beat Queens for their only MIVA win. Quincy is led by Raje Alleyne, who leads the MIVA in kills per set with 4.38. Alleyne had eight kills in the loss to Purdue Fort Wayne last weekend. The Hawks are on a 16 match losing streak coming into this match.

Series Histories

• Lewis leads the series history 45-26, with the Flyers winning the last three. The Flyers won the last matchup 3-1.  Daniel Haber led the match with 19 kills, hitting .567. Mark Frazier ended the match with 18 kills.

• The Mastodons lead 55-8 in the series history, with the ‘Dons winning the last seven meetings. The most recent match was a 3-0 win for Purdue Fort Wayne earlier this season. Mark Frazier had 17 kills to go with six digs for the ‘Dons in that contest.

Saturday… Is Senior Day

Prior to Saturday’s match against Quincy, the Mastodons will celebrate the careers of five student-athletes who will be graduating from the program: Jon Diedrich, Bryce Walker, Carlos Mercado, Wilmer Hernandez and Davey Singer.

Killed it

Jon Diedrich had a career high 37 kills against Ball State (Mar. 23), tying the most kills in an NCAA match since 2018. This performance won him MIVA Co-Offensive Player of the Week.

Last Time Out

Last weekend Purdue Fort Wayne went 1-1 against MIVA opponents. On Friday (Mar. 29) Lindenwood swept the Mastodons. On Saturday (Mar. 30) Purdue Fort Wayne swept Quincy.

Coming Up

Next week is the MIVA quarterfinal on Saturday (April 13), time and location TBD. If the current standings hold, Purdue Fort Wayne would be the No. 7 seed and would play No. 2 seed Loyola Chicago on the road.



EVANSVILLE, Ind. – University of Southern Indiana Baseball were frozen offensively in the final six innings by Murray State University and lost 13-6 Wednesday evening at the USI Baseball Field. USI is 13-16 overall, while Murray State goes to 19-10.

After falling behind 2-0 on Murray State home runs in the first and second inning, USI got on the scoreboard with a pair of runs in the bottom of the second to even the count, 2-2. USI junior centerfielder Terrick Thompson-Allen (Sioux City, Iowa) ignited the second inning rally with his fifth home run of the season, while junior catcher Logan Mock (Livermore, California) scored on squeeze play bunt by freshman leftfielder Ethan Rothschild (Evansville, Indiana) for the second tally.

The Eagles would break the tie in the bottom of the third when senior designated hitter Tucker Ebest (Austin, Texas) launched a three-run bomb to right field for a 5-2 USI advantage. The round tripper was Ebest’s fourth of the season.

The Racers would rally to tie the game, 5-5, with a pair of runs in the fifth and a single tally in the sixth. Murray State would grab the lead back for the first time since the top of the second, 8-5, when it picked up a trio of runs in the top of the seventh.

USI closed the gap to two, 8-6, in the bottom of the seventh when freshman leftfielder Cameron Boyd (Villa Hills, Kentucky) drove in Thompson-Allen with a two-out single to left field. The Eagles would leave the tying run at first when senior pinch hitter Tyler Kapust (Sellersburg, Indiana) struck out to end the frame.

Murray State would complete an offensive surge of runs in the final five innings by posting a run in the eighth and four more in the ninth to lead 13-6. USI would attempt to make a game of in the bottom of the ninth before the Racers closed the door on the 13-6 decision.

USI junior right-hander Adam Wiehe (Louisville, Kentucky) took the loss in relief. Wiehe (0-1) allowed three unearned runs on two hits and struck out two in one inning.

Up Next for the Eagles:

USI concludes the two-game series with Murray State Wednesday at the USI Baseball Field. The first pitch Wednesday is set for 6 p.m.

The homestand continues this weekend when USI plays a three-game Ohio Valley Conference series versus Lindenwood University. The series starts Friday at 6 p.m., while continuing Saturday at 3 p.m. and concludes Sunday at 1 p.m.

Lindenwood, which is 8-20 overall and 2-4 in the OVC, leads the all-time series with USI, 6-2, and took two of three in the OVC last year in St. Charles.



Valparaiso (10-16, 2-4 MVC)

at Illinois State (14-11*, 4-2 MVC)

Duffy Bass Field (1,200) | Normal, Ill.

*Entering Wednesday’s scheduled midweek at SIUE

Friday, April 5, 5 p.m. CT – RHP Adam Guazzo

Saturday, April 6, 3 p.m. CT – RHP Connor Lockwood

Sunday, April 7, 1 p.m. CT – TBD

Next Up in Valpo Baseball: The Valparaiso University baseball team will return to the road this weekend for a three-game series at Illinois State beginning on Friday evening. After this trip, the Beacons will grow more accustomed to sleeping in their own beds, as they will have over a month before their next overnight travel. But first they will look to take care of business on the road in another important Missouri Valley Conference series at Duffy Bass Field.

Last Time Out: After dropping the opening game of the series 6-4 on Friday, Valpo bounced back to beat Bradley 9-2 on Saturday and 13-2 in seven innings on Sunday. Connor Lockwood threw a complete game to highlight Saturday’s win before a Sunday rout that represented Valpo’s largest margin of victory in league play since joining the Missouri Valley Conference. Valpo was slated to have a pair of midweek games, but Tuesday’s home contest vs. Milwaukee and Wednesday’s road trip to Purdue were both called off due to unfavorable weather and field conditions.

Following the Beacons: All three games this weekend will air on ESPN+. Links to live video and stats will be available on For in-game updates, follow @ValpoBaseball on X.

Head Coach Brian Schmack: Brian Schmack (198-310) is in his 11th season in charge of the program. He ranks third in program history in seasons coached and games coached as he coached his 500th game on March 17, 2024 at Campbell. He entered the season with 188 victories, the third most in program history. Schmack, a member of the 2003 Detroit Tigers, served as pitching coach/associate head coach at Valpo for seven seasons prior to his promotion.

Series Notes: Valpo holds a 16-27-1 all-time record against Illinois State and a 9-8 mark since joining the Missouri Valley Conference. Valpo is 8-4 against the Redbirds in the last 12 matchups including an important 7-6 victory to open the final series of the regular season last year at Emory G. Bauer Field. That win clinched an MVC Tournament berth for the Beacons and dashed the Redbirds’ hopes of qualifying for the tournament. Illinois State did win the final two games of the series – which were not impactful in the standings – 20-10 and 10-3. Valpo’s most recent visit to Bloomington-Normal saw the Beacons take two of three from the Redbirds in 2022.

In The Other Dugout: Illinois State 

Coming off a road series sweep at Missouri State.

Have won each of their last four MVC contests but did drop two of three to Bradley, a team Valpo won its series against.

Picked to finish seventh of 10 in the MVC preseason poll.

One of two teams that finished behind Valpo and missed the conference tournament last season.

Luke Cheng leads the team in batting average at .373 but has played in only 16 games. Daniel Pacella is hitting .337 with six home runs and 37 RBIs.

Under the direction of sixth-year head coach Steve Holm, who played in the big leagues with the Giants and Twins. This is a matchup where both head coaches are former Major League Baseball players.

Closing in on 200

Head coach Brian Schmack is just two wins away from becoming the third skipper in program history to reach the 200-win threshold.

Schmack ranks third in program history in career victories, trailing only Paul Twenge (1988-2006, 378) and the legendary Emory G. Bauer (1954-1981, 359).

Schmack reached a milestone on March 17 at No. 21 Campbell, his 500th game at the helm of the program. He became the third skipper in program history to reach that number, joining Paul Twenge (1,011; 1988-2006) and Emory G. Bauer (1954-1981; 606).



INDIANAPOLIS—The University of Indianapolis has named Scott Heady as its next head coach of the Greyhound men’s basketball program. A UIndy alumnus, Heady takes over after spending the last seven years as the head coach at crosstown Marian University.

Heady will be the 12th head coach in UIndy men’s basketball history. One of the most respected head coaches in basketball throughout the State of Indiana, Heady brings with him one of the most diverse portfolios of experience at both the high school and collegiate levels.

In making the announcement, University of Indianapolis President Dr. Tanuja Singh and Interim Vice President of Intercollegiate Athletics Dr. D. Scott Gines noted that Heady was the ideal candidate to be UIndy’s next men’s basketball head coach.

“I am so pleased to welcome Coach Scott Heady back home to the University of Indianapolis as our next head coach of men’s basketball,” said Singh. “Scott embodies UIndy’s commitment to excellence in academics and athletics. He was a successful student-athlete at UIndy and has built a career that demonstrates why Indiana is the focal point for all things basketball – Scott is a genuine legacy and mentor of the game. Scott is ideally positioned to carry on UIndy’s commitment to basketball excellence. As we have come to say, a Greyhound always finds his way home.”

Gines agreed that Heady was the ideal choice to lead the team into the future. “This is an important day for UIndy Athletics as well as the University of Indianapolis,” said Gines. “Scott Heady reflects excellence and a winning approach in all he does, and we are thrilled to have him on campus to further our program’s success.”

Heady returns to his alma mater after seven successful years as the men’s basketball head coach at nearby Marian University, compiling an impressive 168-56 (.750) record. The Knights racked up at least 20 wins and an NAIA Tournament berth each year under his guidance, a run that included the school’s first-ever national semifinal appearance in 2019 and a Crossroads League title in 2020.

“I want to thank Dr. Singh and Dr. Gines for this tremendous opportunity,” said Heady. “UIndy is highly respected academically, has an impressive campus, a winning tradition throughout the athletic program and offers all we need to compete for GLVC and National Championships.

“I am extremely proud to once again be a Greyhound and excited to get started. Go Hounds!”

A 1986 graduate of the University of Indianapolis, Heady played for former Purdue All-American and Indiana Pacer legend Billy Keller. While at UIndy, he lettered three years and served as team captain during his final two seasons while leading the team free throw percentage (.831) his final year.

Prior to coaching at Marian, Heady was head coach at Carmel High School for seven seasons. He led the team to one of the most impressive runs in IHSAA history, including back-to-back state championships in 2012 and 2013. Heady’s teams compiled a record of 141-38 (.788) and averaged 20 wins a season, winning conference crowns and a pair of 4A state titles. He also had successful stints as the head coach at Indianapolis’ Warren Central High School as well as Connersville High School.

Coach Heady also served as Associate Head Men’s Basketball Coach at Anderson University from 2008-2010. Anderson went 38-18 and ranked in the top 25 nationally throughout both years Heady was on staff.

Heady is the son of Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame member Bob Heady, a legendary head coach over three decades at Griffith, Wawasee, Shenandoah and Carmel High Schools.

Scott and his wife Amy, a UIndy alumna herself, reside in Carmel and are proud parents of Clayton, Sam and Luke.





























44 – 43 – 25 – 99

April 4, 1974 – A great moment in sports here. Hank Aaron, Number 44 of the Atlanta Braves tied Babe Ruth’s All-time career home-run record by hitting the 714th of Aaron’s career off of Cincinnati Reds pitcher Jack Billingham, Number 43. It was the 40 year old sluggers first plate appearance of the young season, and he watched four pitches before Hammerin’ Hank did what he did best, knocked the ball over the wall.

April 4, 1983 – What a memory this piece is!  At the final of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship we had a last second shot that has gone down in history. North Carolina State defeated Houston, 54-52 as the Wolfpack won with buzzer-beating  rebound and dunk by Number 43, Lorenzo Charles when the a desperation 30 foot shot from Number 25, Dereck Whittenburg missed the mark. The NC State squad if you remember was coached by the late Jim Valvano who gained noteriety after the famous tournament run by his team.

April 4, 1986 – The Great One, Wayne Gretzky, Number 99 set yet another NHL record by cashing in his 213th point of the season. Gretzky broke is own previously set record by tallying two assists in the Edmonton loss to the Calgary Flames 9-3.


April 4 Football History Headlines

April 4, 1998 – NFL Europe  the Former World League of American Football or WLAF, kicks off season. 1998 was the first season the league was known as NFL Europe. In that important season a guy that played for the Amsterdam franchise named Kurt Warner set the overseas League on fire tossing for over 2100 yards. The League schedule would come to a peak at the 1998 World Bowlplayed on June 14, 1998 when the Rhine Fire would defeat the Frankfurt Galaxy 34-10 according to the website.

April 4 Football Hall of Fame Birthdays

April 4, 1891 – Alpena, Michigan – The University of Wisconsin’s brilliant tackle from 1911 to 1913, Bob “Butts” Butler claimed his birthday. Butts was a stout two way tackle that knew how to hit opponents low and drive them to whatever location he wanted.The Badgers were considered by many to be the top team in the country in 1912 and Butler was the anchor of the lines for Wisconsin. Many wanted to test the waters of how good the Badgers were by challenging Yale, but the Wisconsin faculty gave the idea the thumbs down preventing the 1912 game to take place. The Badgers nevertheless according to the NFF went undefeated blowing out rivals like Northwestern, Purdue, Minnesota and even Arkansas. Nine players from the 1912 U of W squad were awarded All- American honors in 1912 including Bob Butler. The National Football Foundation inducted Bob Butler into their College Football Hall of Fame in 1972.

April 4,1907 – Lake Charles, Louisiana – Bill Banker the great Tulane halfback of the 1927 to 1929 teams, arrived into this world. Bill was known as the “Blonde Blizzard” according to his biography sketch on the website. This moniker came about because when the speedy light haired back ran on the field without a helmet most people saw a vanilla blur go across the field! Banker was voted as a 1929 All-American and he established the Tulane school records for career scoring with 263 points,  37 career touchdowns, 4 touchdowns in a game, 515 most rushing attempts in a career, most rushes in a game with 43 and a atounding 93.2 yards rushing average per game. In his senior year he led Tulane to an undefeated season. Bill Banker’s collegiate football records are celebrated in the College Football Hall of Fame after his induction in 1977. After school he acted in some Hollywood movies for Warner Brothers and later played pro ball for the Memphis Tigers.

April 4, 1917 – Bridgeport, Connecticut – The solid center of Boston College from 1938 through the 1940 season, Chet Gladchuk celebrated his day of birth. Chet was a well rounded athlete who really was cemented in the position of center, not only on the Gridiron but he was also the starting center on the BC hoops team. The 1940 Golden Eagle football team was pretty solid too as Gladchuk was one of five College Football Hall of Fame inductees from that team. The Football Foundation website says that Gladchuk was associated with yet another Hall of Famer as Frank Leahy was his head coach. Boston College posted a 9-1 regular season mark and played Clemson in the Cotton Bowl. Despite losing 6-3, Gladchuk was part of a Boston College defense that forced Clemson to punt 11 times, a Cotton Bowl record. The 11-0, 1940 squad was unquestionably Boston College’s all-time best team. Boston College finished with a 19-13 Sugar Bowl victory over the Tennessee Vols. The NFF voters selected Chet Gladchuk for induction into their College Football Hall of Fame in 1975.

April 4, 1947 – La Mesa, California – The impactful defensive tackle from Cal, Ed White was born. The NFF tells us that White was a player who lettered three years at California, made all-Pac 10 Conference three times, and made All-America in 1968. In 1968, he anchored a California defense that allowed only five rushing touchdowns in 11 games. His legend lives on in his hometown of San Diego where a local high school even named their field after him.The College Football Hall of Fame proudly placed a display in honor of Ed White into their legendary museum in 1999.In 1997 Ed rejoined his connection to the Cal football programs when he became an assistant coach with the team.

April 4, 1951 – Canton, Georgia – The Alabama Crimson Tide standout offensive lineman  from 1970 to 1972, John Hannah celebrates his birthday. The National Football Foundation shares that John Hannah was perhaps the greatest offensive lineman in the history of the game as many different credible experts offer great testimonials of this. His head coach at Alabama, Bear Bryant, said, “In over 30 years with the game, he’s the finest offensive lineman I’ve ever been around.” Sports Illustrated in 1981 called him the best offensive lineman of all time. He made All-America in 1971 and  was a unanimous selection 1972. In 1972 he also won the Jacobs Award as the nation’s best blocker at his position, offensive guard. He was named Lineman of the Year by the Birmingham Quarterback Club, Atlanta Touchdown Club, and Miami Touchdown Club. Alabama had a 27-8-1 record in his three years and won two conference championships. Hannah was named to Alabama’a all-century team and the Southeastern Conference all-50-year team (1933-1982).The National Football Foundation tallied the votes in favor of John Hannah entering the College Football Hall of Fame in 1999. At the 1973 NFL Draft the New England Patriots used their first round pick to select Hannah. John had a brilliant 13 year career with the Pats in the NFL and was equally proficient at blowing open big holes for the run game was well as being a solid pass protector. According to the Pro HOF site Hannah was selected as an All-Pro in 10 of the 13 seasons he played professionally as well as being a four-time NFLPA Offensive Lineman of the Year which are even more accredited of how special a player he was. John Hannah was enshrined for his great NFL play into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1991.

April 4, 1965 – Griffin, Georgia – Jessie Tuggle the fine linebacker from Valdosta State University was born. Tuggle according to the so called experts did not have the size or the footspeed to play linebacker position at a high level in college football. Therefore Jessie was not offered any incentives to play in the Division I level so he played at Division II Valdosta State. At VSU, according to the NFF’s bio on him, Jessie lettered all four years and made the All-Gulf South conference team for three consecutive years. He gained All-America status as a senior. After his career, Valdosta retired his # 88 and named its athletic workout facility the Jessie Tuggle Strength and Fitness complex. The collegiate legend of Jessie Tuggle was memorialized in the College Football Hall of Fame in 2007. Even with all of the accomplishments he had in college even the NFL teams didn;t recognize how good he was as he went undrafted. He tried out with the Atlanta Falcons and was 17th on their depth chart before he worked his way up the ranks to make it to five Pro Bowls and have a great 14 year NFL career.



April 4

1974 — The Cincinnati Reds defeated the Atlanta Braves 7-6 in 11 innings before a crowd of 52,000 at Riverfront Stadium. In his first at-bat, Hank Aaron hit a three-run homer off Jack Billingham. It was his 714th, tying Babe Ruth’s career record. The Braves had considered keeping Aaron on the bench for the season-opening series in Cincinnati so that he could attempt to tie the record four days later in Atlanta. But Commissioner Bowie Kuhn ordered the Braves to put Aaron into the lineup for at least two of the three games.

1988 — George Bell became the first player to hit three home runs on opening day, leading the Toronto Blue Jays past the Kansas City Royals 5-3. Bell, bitter throughout spring training with his move to designated hitter, homered three times in that role off Bret Saberhagen.

1993 — At Camden Yards, Bill Clinton becomes the first U.S. President to throw the first pitch of the season from the pitcher’s mound.

1994 — Chicago’s Karl Rhodes hit three solo home runs off Dwight Gooden in a 12-8 loss to the New York Mets on opening day at Wrigley Field. Rhodes became the second player to homer three times in an opener.

1994 — The Cleveland Indians open new stadium, Jacobs Field, with a 4 – 3 victory over the Seattle Mariners.

1998 — Mark McGwire tied Willie Mays’ National League record by hitting a home run in each of his first four games of the season. McGwire launched a towering three-run shot in the sixth inning of an 8-6 victory over the San Diego Padres.

1999 — America’s pastime opened in Mexico for the first time. The Colorado Rockies beat the Chicago Cubs 8-2 in baseball’s first season opener outside the United States and Canada.

2001 — Hideo Nomo became the fourth pitcher in major league history to throw a no-hitter in both leagues in Boston’s 3-0 victory over Baltimore. Nomo, who threw the first no-hitter in Colorado’s Coors Field on Sept. 17, 1996, for Los Angeles, walked three and struck out 11 in the first no-hitter in the 10-year history of Camden Yards. Nomo joined Cy Young, Jim Bunning and Nolan Ryan as the only pitchers with no-hitters in both leagues.

2003 — Sammy Sosa of the Chicago Cubs became the 18th player to hit 500 career homers, connecting for a solo shot in a 10-9 loss to Cincinnati. He became the fifth player to reach 500 homers before his 35th birthday. Babe Ruth, Hank Aaron, Willie Mays and Jimmie Foxx were the others.

2005 — Dmitri Young became the third player to hit three homers on opening day, and Jeremy Bonderman won as the youngest opening day starter in the major leagues since 1986 to lead Detroit over the Kansas City Royals 11-2.

2011 — Nelson Cruz of Texas became the third player in major league history to homer in the first four games of a season and the Rangers beat Seattle 6-4. Cruz joined Willie Mays (1971) and Mark McGwire (1998) as the only players to go deep in each of their first four games of a season.

2012 — The Miami Marlins open a new name and a new ballpark, Marlins Park, but lose to the St. Louis Cardinals.

2016 — Colorado Rockies SS Trevor Story becomes the first player to hit two homers in his debut on Opening Day.

2018 — MLB experiments with a new medium as today’s game between the Phillies and Mets is broadcast live exclusively on “Facebook Watch”.

2021 — For the first time since his debut in Major League Baseball in 2018, Shohei Ohtani is in the batting order in a game in which he is also the starting pitcher.


Off the field…

Minister and civil-rights activist Dr. Martin Luther King led over two hundred thousand people in the largest non-violent demonstration ever held to support the passage of civil rights legislation. The historic march on Washington D.C. was highlighted by King’s infamous “I have a dream” speech in which he stated “one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: we hold these truths to be self evident; that all men are created equal.”

On November 22nd, President John F. Kennedy was shot and killed as he rode through the streets of Dallas, Texas aboard the presidential motorcade. Lee Harvey Oswald was later identified as the lone assassin although his guilt was never proven in a court of law. While in police custody, Oswald himself was shot and killed by nightclub owner Jack Ruby.

As a first step toward ending the “Cold War”, a test ban agreement between the United States and the Soviet Union was ratified by the Senate on October 10. The contract between the world’s two superpowers prohibited any future above ground testing of nuclear weapons of mass destruction.

In the American League…

Detroit Tiger Billy Bruton tied a Major League record for most doubles in a single game after hitting four straight to top the Washington Senators 5-1 on May 19th. Teammate and rookie pitcher Bill Faul matched Bruton’s efforts on the mound while tossing a three hitter in his first Major League start.

On May 22nd, Mickey Mantle hit what is considered by many experts to be the longest homerun in Major League history. Batting left-handed against the visiting Kansas City A’s at Yankee Stadium, Mantle opened the eleventh inning with a monumental blast off Bill Fisher that traveled three-hundred seventy-four feet from home plate, bouncing off of the third tier facade and falling just inches short of going out of the stadium. A senior physicist from the University of Arizona, Professor J.E. McDonald, calculated the estimated distance the ball would have traveled at six-hundred twenty feet.

Cleveland pitcher Early Wynn finally won his 300th (and final) game thanks to a little help from the Indian’s bullpen. After losing eight straight and struggling through five innings during the second half of a Kansas City doubleheader, Wynn was replaced by relief man Jerry Walker who tossed four scoreless sides en route to a 7-4 win over the Athletics.

In the National League…

Chicago Cubs first baseman Ernie Banks became the first National League player to tally twenty-two putouts (and twenty-three chances) in a game, during a May 9th, 3-1 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates.

On June 15th, Juan Marichal set two records after becoming the first Latin American pitcher AND only the second Giant (Carl Hubbell, 1929) to pitch a no-hitter during a 1-0 triumph over the Houston Colt 45s (Astros) at Candlestick Park.

Milwaukee Brave veteran Warren Spahn topped the National League record for most starts (previously held by Grover Alexander) with his 601st appearance on the mound during a 6-1 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers on August 23rd. Later in the season Spahn tied Christy Mathewson’s National League record with his thirteenth, twenty-win season and became the oldest to do so at age forty-two.

Around the League…

The Major League Rules Committee voted to expand the strike zone, extending it from the top of the shoulders to the bottom of the knees restoring its original pre-1950 specifications.

On September 6th, Major League Baseball celebrated its 100,000th game with a classic match-up between the Cleveland Indians and Washington Senators at D.C. Stadium.

St. Louis Cardinals’ slugger Stan Musial made a record 24th All-Star Game appearance as his National League teammates combined to beat their American League counterparts 5-3 in the Midsummer Classic.

Houston Colt 45s (Astros) manager Harry Craft shocked the New York Mets after starting an all-rookie line-up during a September 27th contest. Fifteen rookies appeared in all, but were bested by the older and wiser Mets who “mentored” them with a 10-3 lesson in experience.



Had Grover Cleveland Alexander been a writer, the French would have called him a poete maudit, a cursed poet. Alexander had within him the greatness and the frailty that make for tragedy. Except for Ty Cobb among his contemporaries, no other player had to cope with so many personal demons. With Cobb and Christy Mathewson, Alexander is one of the most complex players of the Deadball Era.

The only ballplayer named for a sitting United States president and portrayed on film by a future one (Ronald Reagan in The Winning Team) was born February 26, 1887, in the tiny farming community of Elba, Nebraska. He was one of thirteen children (twelve boys), the sixth of eight to survive into adulthood, born to the former Margaret Cootey and William Alexander.



April 4, 1996

Chicago beat Miami 100-92 to win its NBA record 44th consecutive home game (over two seasons) and its NBA record 37th consecutive home game at the start of a season. The Bulls lost their next game to the Hornets 98-97 on April 8, 1996, ending both streaks. Also in this game, Michael Jordan recorded four steals to become the fourth NBA player to reach 2,000 career steals.

April 4, 1996

The visiting Boston Celtics defeated the Orlando Magic 100-98, snapping Orlando’s NBA record 51-game home winning streak against Eastern Conference opponents, dating back to April 1994.

April 4, 1997

Utah’s Karl Malone became the first NBA player to reach the 2,000-point plateau in 10 consecutive seasons in the Jazz’s 106-79 victory against the Grizzlies.


April 4

1921 — The NHL champion Ottawa Senators beat the Pacific Coast Hockey Association champion Vancouver Millionaires 2-1 to win the Stanley Cup 3 games to 2.

1937 — Byron Nelson shoots a 283 to win the Masters by two strokes over Ralph Guldahl.

1938 — Henry Picard beats Ralph Guldahl and Harry Cooper by two strokes to capture the Masters.

1959 — France beats Wales, 11-3 at Stade Colombes to win the Five Nations Rugby Championship outright for the first time.

1974 — Hank Aaron ties Babe Ruth’s home-run record by hitting his 714th.

1983 — Lorenzo Charles scores on a dunk after Derek Whittenburg’s 35-foot desperation shot falls short to give North Carolina State a 54-52 triumph over Houston in the NCAA championship.

1985 — Tulane University cancels its basketball season.

1986 — Edmonton’s Wayne Gretzky breaks his own NHL single-season points record with three assists to increase his total to 214. He scored 212 points in 1981-82.

1987 — New York’s Denis Potvin, the highest-scoring defenseman in NHL history, scores his 1,000th point.

1988 — Danny Manning scores 31 points and grabs 18 rebounds as Kansas wins its second NCAA championship with an 83-79 victory over Oklahoma.

1989 — Kareem Abdul-Jabbar plays final NBA game.

1989 — NY Yankee Tommy John ties record of playing 26 seasons.

1993 — Sheryl Swoopes shatters the women’s championship game record by scoring 47 points to lead Texas Tech to an 84-82 victory over Ohio State.

1993 — Mario Andretti, at 53, wins the Valvoline 200 in Phoenix to become the oldest driver to win an Indy car race and the first driver to win a race in four different decades.

1994 — Arkansas wins its first men’s national championship with a 76-72 victory over Duke, depriving the Blue Devils of a third title in four years.

1997 — Anaheim Ducks clinch their 1st-ever playoff berth.

1997 — Braves officially open Turner Field.

1998 — Mark McGwire ties Willie Mays’ National League record by hitting a home run in each of his first four games. McGwire launches a towering three-run shot in the sixth inning of an 8-6 victory over the San Diego

2001 — Hideo Nomo becomes the fourth pitcher in major league history to throw a no-hitter in both leagues in Boston’s 3-0 victory over Baltimore.

2003 — Sammy Sosa of the Chicago Cubs becomes the 18th player to hit 500 career homers, connecting for a solo shot in a 10-9 loss to Cincinnati.

2004 — Carolina’s Brad Fast beat Florida goalie Roberto Luongo with a wrist shot to tie the game at 6-6 late in the third period. It’s the final tie game in NHL history.

2005 — North Carolina defeats Illinois to win the NCAA Division I men’s basketball championship. Sean May has 26 points and the Tar Heels don’t allow a basket over the final 2 1/2 minutes to defeat Illinois 75-70.

2006 — 25th NCAA Women’s Basketball Championship: Maryland beats Duke, 78-75 OT.

2011 — Kemba Walker scores 16 points and Alex Oriakhi has 11 points, 11 rebounds and four blocked shots to lead Connecticut to a 53-41 win over Butler in the men’s NCAA championship game.

2015 — The United States defends their women’s world hockey championship with a 7-5 win over Canada.

2016 — Kris Jenkins hits a 3-pointer at the buzzer to lift Villanova to the national title with a 77-74 victory over North Carolina — one of the wildest finishes in the history of the NCAA Tournament. Jenkins’ shot comes moments after Marcus Paige hit a double-clutch 3 from beyond the arc to tie the game at 74 with 4.7 seconds left.

2021 — 39th NCAA Women’s Basketball Championship: Stanford Cardinal defeat Arizona Wildcats, 54–53.



4:30 a.m.

FS2 — AFL: Melbourne at Adelaide


10:25 p.m.

ESPNU — Formula 1: Practice, Suzuka Circuit, Suzuka, Japan

1:55 a.m. (Friday)

ESPN2 — Formula 1: Practice, Suzuka Circuit, Suzuka, Japan


7 p.m.

ACCN — North Carolina at Virginia

ESPN2 — Vanderbilt at LSU

SECN — Mississippi at Arkansas


9 p.m.

ESPN — College Slam-Dunk and 3-Point Championships: From Phoenix


7 p.m.

ESPN — NIT Tournament: Indiana St. vs. Seton Hall, Championship, Indianapolis


10:30 a.m.

GOLF — Korn Ferry Tour: The Club Car Championship, First Round, The Landings Club – Deer Creek Course, Savannah, Ga.

1:30 p.m.

GOLF — The Augusta National Women’s Amateur: Second Round, Retreat Golf Club, St. Simons Island, Ga.

4 p.m.

GOLF — PGA Tour: The Valero Texas Open, First Round, TPC San Antonio, San Antonio

7 p.m.

GOLF — LPGA Tour: The T-Mobile Match Play – Day 2, Shadow Creek, Las Vegas


2 p.m.

ESPNU — Chipotle High School Nationals: IMG Academy (Fla.) vs. Paul VI (Va.), Quarterfinal, Brownsburg, Ind.

4 p.m.

ESPNU — Chipotle High School Nationals: Columbus (Fla.) vs. Long Island Lutheran (N.Y.), Quarterfinal, Brownsburg, Ind.

6 p.m.

ESPNU — Chipotle High School Nationals: Link Academy (Mo.) vs. Prolific Prep (Calif.), Quarterfinal, Brownsburg, Ind.

8 p.m.

ESPNU — Chipotle High School Nationals: AZ Compass (Ariz.) vs. Montverde Academy (Fla.), Quarterfinal, Brownsburg, Ind.


10 a.m.

ESPNU — Grace Christian School (N.C.) vs. IMG Academy (Fla.), Opening Round, Brownsburg, Ind.


ESPNU — Sidwell Friends (D.C.) vs. Montverde Academy (Fla.), Opening Round, Brownsburg, Ind.


1 p.m.

FS2 — NYRA: America’s Day at the Races


11 a.m.

NHLN — World Championship Group Stage: China vs. Japan, Group B, Utica, N.Y.


10 p.m.

ESPN2 — PFL Main Card: Heavyweights & Women’s Flyweights, San Antonio


4 p.m.

MLBN — Regional Coverage: Cleveland at Minnesota OR Miami at St. Louis

7:30 p.m.

MLBN — Chicago White Sox at Kansas City


7:30 p.m.

TNT — Sacramento at New York

TRUTV — Sacramento at New York (BetCast)

10 p.m.

TNT — Denver at LA Clippers

TRUTV — Denver at LA Clippers (BetCast)


4:55 a.m.

FS1 — NRL: Brisbane at Melbourne

5 a.m. (Friday)

FS2 — NRL: St. George Illawarra at Newcastle


3:15 p.m.

USA — Premier League: Manchester United at Chelsea


11 a.m.

TENNIS — Charleston-WTA Early Rounds

6 p.m.

TENNIS — Charleston-WTA Early Rounds