INDIANA BOYS BASKETBALL MONDAY

BETHESDA CHRISTIAN89INDIANAPOLIS INTERNATIONAL51 
BLOOMINGTON LIGHTHOUSE68MEDORA24 
INDIANAPOLIS HERRON79KIPP INDY LEGACY77 
KOUTS83HAMMOND SCIENCE & TECH38 
GREENE COUNTY INVITATIONAL
NORTH CENTRAL (FARMERSBURG)65PIKE CENTRAL55 
LINTON-STOCKTON87SHAKAMAK49 

INDIANA BOYS BASKETBALL TUESDAY

ARGOS (8-1) AT NORTH MIAMI (3-6)

BARR-REEVE (7-6) AT WASHINGTON CATHOLIC (0-8)

BETHANY CHRISTIAN (5-5) AT SOUTH BEND CAREER (2-9)

BETHESDA CHRISTIAN (6-0) AT TIPTON (8-3)

BLUE RIVER (5-4) AT UNION (MODOC) (0-7)

BREMEN (4-3) AT ELKHART CHRISTIAN (5-2)

CANNELTON (1-9) AT CLOVERPORT (KY.)

CARROLL (FORT WAYNE) (0-8) AT DEKALB (3-5)

CENTRAL CHRISTIAN (8-6) AT INDIANAPOLIS SHORTRIDGE (2-8)

CULVER (3-6) AT CASTON (5-4)

EAST CHICAGO CENTRAL (0-7) AT BOWMAN ACADEMY (0-6)

EASTERN HANCOCK (7-2) AT RANDOLPH SOUTHERN (3-6)

EMINENCE (0-7) AT CLAY CITY (5-6)

EVANSVILLE CENTRAL (5-3) AT EVANSVILLE BOSSE (6-3)

EVANSVILLE NORTH (5-6) AT EVANSVILLE HARRISON (3-6)

EVANSVILLE REITZ (5-2) AT BOONVILLE (4-6)

FORT WAYNE NORTH (7-7) AT FORT WAYNE CANTERBURY (1-7)

GARY WEST (2-6) AT LOWELL (0-10)

HAMMOND CENTRAL (8-5) AT PORTAGE (10-2)

HOMESTEAD (9-4) AT FORT WAYNE BLACKHAWK (11-0)

IRVINGTON PREP ACADEMY (3-5) AT INDIANA DEAF (5-4)

LAKE CENTRAL (5-5) AT HIGHLAND (4-7)

LAPORTE (6-4) AT GRIFFITH (1-6)

MISHAWAKA (6-2) AT JIMTOWN (5-5)

MOORESVILLE (6-1) AT CHRISTEL HOUSE MANUAL (4-5)

MOUNT CARMEL (ILL.) AT NORTH POSEY (6-3)

NORTH NEWTON (3-4) AT KANKAKEE VALLEY (7-3)

NORTH WHITE (5-3) AT TRI-COUNTY (2-8)

NORWELL (8-3) AT FORT WAYNE WAYNE (1-7)

OWEN VALLEY (3-5) AT NORTHVIEW (7-3)

PIKE CENTRAL (2-7) AT VINCENNES LINCOLN (0-10)

PURDUE POLY ENGLEWOOD (4-9) AT INDIANAPOLIS WASHINGTON (8-3)

RIVER FOREST (3-7) AT MORGAN TWP. (7-2)

SHELBYVILLE (2-8) AT COLUMBUS EAST (1-8)

SOUTH BEND CLAY (3-7) AT OREGON-DAVIS (1-6)

SOUTH CENTRAL (ELIZABETH) (4-7) AT WEST WASHINGTON (2-9)

SOUTH RIPLEY (6-5) AT OLDENBURG ACADEMY (3-6)

SOUTH SPENCER (7-2) AT EVANSVILLE DAY (2-8)

SOUTHWOOD (5-5) AT OAK HILL (7-3)

TELL CITY (1-10) AT HANCOCK COUNTY (KY.)

TRINITY GREENLAWN (6-3) AT LAKEWOOD PARK (2-6)

VICTORY COLLEGE PREP (1-12) AT INDIANA HOME SCHOOL

WARSAW (7-3) AT PENN (8-1)

WASHINGTON TWP. (2-5) AT WESTVILLE (6-5)

WOOD MEMORIAL (0-8) AT PERRY CENTRAL (5-6)

JAY COUNTY (8-2) AT ADAMS CENTRAL (3-4)

BLUFFTON (2-8) AT HERITAGE (2-6)

SOUTH ADAMS (3-6) AT WOODLAN (7-6)

GREENWOOD (6-5) VS. EDINBURGH (11-0)

GREENWOOD CHRISTIAN (6-7) VS. WHITELAND (7-6)

FRANKLIN (3-7) AT INDIAN CREEK (3-7)

INDIANAPOLIS LUTHERAN (8-1) AT SOUTHPORT (5-5)

BEECH GROVE (7-3) AT DECATUR CENTRAL (5-4)

BREBEUF JESUIT (8-2) AT FRANKLIN CENTRAL (3-6)

INDIANAPOLIS RONCALLI (4-5) AT NORTH CENTRAL (INDIANAPOLIS) (6-3)

SPEEDWAY (2-6) AT PARK TUDOR (3-3)

BEN DAVIS (8-2) VS. LAWRENCE NORTH (7-2)

PERRY MERIDIAN (4-7) AT WARREN CENTRAL (6-5)

LAWRENCE CENTRAL (5-6) AT PIKE (7-1)

CENTRAL NOBLE (11-0) AT ANGOLA (3-5)

WEST NOBLE (5-4) AT LAKELAND (2-8)

EASTSIDE (11-0) AT FAIRFIELD (5-4)

HAMILTON (0-9) AT GARRETT (3-9)

INDIANA GIRLS BASKETBALL MONDAY

CLOVERDALE39GREENCASTLE15 
EDGEWOOD63MONROVIA30 
EMINENCE56CENTRAL CHRISTIAN42 
EVANSVILLE CENTRAL61EVANSVILLE BOSSE16 
EVANSVILLE CHRISTIAN47CANNELTON20 
HAMMOND NOLL70ILLIANA CHRISTIAN25 
HANCOCK COUNTY (KY.)47TELL CITY22 
HIGHLAND73BOWMAN ACADEMY41 
JENNINGS COUNTY63WHITELAND40 
LAKE STATION52GARY WEST51 
MORRISTOWN38SOUTHWESTERN (SHELBYVILLE)32 
OWEN VALLEY58CLAY CITY26 
PORTLAND CHRISTIAN (KY.)51CHRISTIAN ACADEMY36 
VICTORY CHRISTIAN53HAMMOND SCIENCE & TECH8 
WARREN CENTRAL57INDIANAPOLIS HOMESCHOOL49 
WEST WASHINGTON50ROCK CREEK ACADEMY30 
INDIANAPOLIS CITY TOURNAMENT
INDIANAPOLIS SCECINA72INDIANAPOLIS TINDLEY53 
PURDUE POLY ENGLEWOOD64INDIANAPOLIS SHORTRIDGE25 
INDIANAPOLIS CHATARD52PROVIDENCE CRISTO REY3 
INDIANAPOLIS RITTER69INDIANAPOLIS TECH45 
HERITAGE CHRISTIAN56CHRISTEL HOUSE MANUAL5 
COVENANT CHRISTIAN58INDIANAPOLIS HERRON31 

INDIANA GIRLS BASKETBALL TUESDAY

ANDERSON (6-10) AT MUNCIE CENTRAL (8-4)

ATTICA (0-11) AT NORTH VERMILLION (9-7)

BARR-REEVE (6-12) AT WASHINGTON CATHOLIC (2-9)

BEN DAVIS (10-6) AT COLUMBUS NORTH (10-5)

BETHANY CHRISTIAN (6-9) AT SOUTH BEND CAREER (0-14)

BETHESDA CHRISTIAN (9-2) AT PARK TUDOR (10-5)

BLACKFORD (11-4) AT ALEXANDRIA (11-4)

BLUE RIVER (14-2) AT UNION (MODOC) (6-7)

BOONE GROVE (9-6) AT CALUMET (0-14)

BOONVILLE (7-9) AT SOUTH SPENCER (12-3)

BORDEN (9-7) AT FLOYD CENTRAL (6-10)

BREBEUF JESUIT (6-6) AT TRI-WEST (11-6)

CANNELTON (5-9) AT CLOVERPORT (KY.)

CASTON (11-4) AT BENTON CENTRAL (19-0)

CENTERVILLE (3-11) AT SHENANDOAH (4-8)

CHARLESTOWN (12-5) AT EASTERN (PEKIN) (10-7)

CISSNA PARK (ILL.) AT SOUTH NEWTON (1-10)

COLUMBUS EAST (13-3) AT BEDFORD NORTH LAWRENCE (16-1)

COVENANT CHRISTIAN (DEMOTTE) (12-3) AT MARQUETTE CATHOLIC (7-8)

DELPHI (8-7) AT CLINTON CENTRAL (7-7)

DUGGER UNION (1-10) AT EASTERN GREENE (14-3)

EASTERN HANCOCK (13-2) AT NEW CASTLE (8-7)

ELKHART (9-8) AT VALPARAISO (12-3)

ELKHART CHRISTIAN (2-10) AT SOUTH BEND CLAY (2-12)

EVANSVILLE MATER DEI (10-7) AT EVANSVILLE MEMORIAL (12-3)

EVANSVILLE REITZ (8-6) AT EVANSVILLE NORTH (12-2)

FOREST PARK (14-2) AT CORYDON CENTRAL (15-2)

FORT WAYNE CANTERBURY (2-12) AT LAKELAND CHRISTIAN (9-6)

FORT WAYNE WAYNE (9-5) AT EAST NOBLE (3-13)

FOUNTAIN CENTRAL (6-10) AT COVINGTON (5-9)

FRANKFORT (1-15) AT ROSSVILLE (0-15)

FRANKLIN CENTRAL (4-11) AT MOORESVILLE (10-8)

GIBSON SOUTHERN (9-5) AT JASPER (4-12)

GOSHEN (7-9) AT SOUTH BEND ST. JOSEPH (12-7)

GREENSBURG (5-12) AT BROWN COUNTY (3-14)

HENRYVILLE (6-9) AT AUSTIN (5-9)

HOBART (7-8) AT CHESTERTON (8-6)

INDIANAPOLIS LUTHERAN (4-9) AT SOUTHWESTERN (SHELBYVILLE) (7-7)

INDIANAPOLIS RONCALLI (8-9) AT GUERIN CATHOLIC (8-7)

IRVINGTON PREP ACADEMY (1-8) AT INDIANA MATH & SCIENCE (6-8)

JAC-CEN-DEL (13-4) AT LAWRENCEBURG (12-6)

JIMTOWN (2-14) AT CONCORD (6-10)

KNOX (10-9) AT SOUTH CENTRAL (UNION MILLS) (17-0)

LACROSSE (12-4) AT KOUTS (12-4)

LAKEWOOD PARK (6-9) AT FORT WAYNE NORTHROP (8-5)

LANESVILLE (17-1) AT TRINITY LUTHERAN (11-5)

LAPORTE (3-12) AT PLYMOUTH (9-7)

LAVILLE (8-8) AT NORTH JUDSON (3-12)

LEBANON (8-7) AT KOKOMO (9-5)

LIBERTY CHRISTIAN (7-8) AT PHALEN ACADEMY

MACONAQUAH (10-5) AT PIONEER (12-4)

MADISON (10-6) AT SILVER CREEK (16-1)

MADISON-GRANT (10-6) AT TAYLOR (7-10)

MARION (2-15) AT MISSISSINEWA (5-12)

MARSHALL (ILL.) AT TERRE HAUTE SOUTH (2-14)

MARTINSVILLE (3-12) AT TERRE HAUTE SOUTH (2-14)

MILAN (4-13) AT RISING SUN (6-10)

MISHAWAKA MARIAN (14-3) AT HOMESTEAD (15-1)

MITCHELL (11-6) AT BLOOMINGTON NORTH (8-9)

MORGAN TWP. (8-8) AT WASHINGTON TWP. (12-2)

MOUNT VERNON (FORTVILLE) (10-6) AT NOBLESVILLE (14-3)

MUNSTER (6-6) AT CROWN POINT (13-2)

NEW HAVEN (0-13) AT FORT WAYNE LUERS (9-7)

NORTH CENTRAL (FARMERSBURG) (14-4) AT SULLIVAN (13-4)

NORTH DAVIESS (4-11) AT SHOALS (5-9)

NORTH DECATUR (11-6) AT MORRISTOWN (8-7)

NORTH MONTGOMERY (11-6) AT GREENCASTLE (2-14)

NORTH NEWTON (7-7) AT FRONTIER (5-6)

NORTH POSEY (6-6) AT HERITAGE HILLS (7-7)

NORTH WHITE (12-4) AT CLINTON PRAIRIE (10-7)

NORTHEAST DUBOIS (12-3) AT SOUTHRIDGE (8-8)

OLDENBURG ACADEMY (5-9) AT HAUSER (8-8)

OREGON-DAVIS (4-10) AT JOHN GLENN (10-6)

OWEN VALLEY (8-11) AT NORTHVIEW (15-2)

PAOLI (11-7) AT SCOTTSBURG (10-7)

PARKE HERITAGE (12-5) AT SOUTH VERMILLION (4-12)

PIKE CENTRAL (4-12) AT LOOGOOTEE (5-11)

PORTAGE (8-7) AT EAST CHICAGO CENTRAL (3-10)

PROVIDENCE (5-11) AT NEW WASHINGTON (8-8)

PROVIDENCE CRISTO REY (0-11) AT INDIANAPOLIS RIVERSIDE (2-11)

RICHMOND (6-9) AT CONNERSVILLE (6-11)

RIVERTON PARKE (3-12) AT SOUTH PUTNAM (8-8)

ROCK CREEK ACADEMY (7-5) AT SHAWE MEMORIAL (6-6)

RUSHVILLE (10-8) AT SHELBYVILLE (8-9)

SHERIDAN (11-3) AT LAPEL (11-6)

SOUTH DECATUR (3-12) AT CROTHERSVILLE (2-9)

SOUTH KNOX (9-7) AT WOOD MEMORIAL (6-9)

SPRINGS VALLEY (9-7) AT CRAWFORD COUNTY (6-10)

TECUMSEH (10-6) AT MOUNT VERNON (POSEY) (4-12)

TIPPECANOE VALLEY (10-6) AT NORTHWOOD (2-18)

TIPTON (15-1) AT EASTERN (GREENTOWN) (2-15)

TRADERS POINT CHRISTIAN (1-8) AT SHERIDAN (11-3)

TRI (12-4) AT NORTHEASTERN (6-10)

TRI-COUNTY (6-8) AT SEEGER (14-3)

TRITON CENTRAL (15-3) AT NEW PALESTINE (9-7)

TWIN LAKES (14-4) AT RENSSELAER CENTRAL (12-4)

UNIVERSITY (12-2) AT SEEGER (14-3)

WABASH (5-11) AT EASTBROOK (12-2)

WAWASEE (8-9) AT COLUMBIA CITY (16-0)

WEST LAFAYETTE (10-6) AT LAFAYETTE CENTRAL CATHOLIC (14-3)

WEST VIGO (8-9) AT CLOVERDALE (7-9)

WESTERN (11-6) AT HAMILTON HEIGHTS (13-4)

WESTERN BOONE (5-8) AT CRAWFORDSVILLE (4-11)

WHITE RIVER VALLEY (4-11) AT ORLEANS (3-13)

WHITING (2-11) AT HAMMOND CENTRAL (1-16)

WINAMAC (5-12) AT TRITON (10-7)

ZIONSVILLE (13-5) AT MCCUTCHEON (9-8)

JAY COUNTY (13-2) AT ADAMS CENTRAL (8-8)

BLUFFTON (6-10) AT HERITAGE (8-9)

SOUTH ADAMS (8-5) AT WOODLAN (13-3)

DALEVILLE (4-11) VS. WAPAHANI (11-5)

COWAN (4-10) AT YORKTOWN (3-12)

WINNER GAME 1 AT INDIANAPOLIS CATHEDRAL (9-8)

CENTRAL NOBLE (10-6) AT ANGOLA (9-7)

WEST NOBLE (5-11) AT LAKELAND (9-9)

EASTSIDE (10-7) AT FAIRFIELD (14-2)

HAMILTON (1-8) AT GARRETT (16-1)

COLLEGE FOOTBALL NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP

#3 Georgia 33 #1 Alabama 18

SUPER WILD CARD WEEKEND

Saturday, January 15

AFC:    4:30 PM (ET)  5 Las Vegas at 4 Cincinnati (NBC, Peacock, Universo)

AFC:    8:15 PM (ET)  6 New England at 3 Buffalo (CBS, Paramount+)

Sunday, January 16

NFC:    1:00 PM (ET)  7 Philadelphia at 2 Tampa Bay (FOX, FOX Deportes)

NFC:    4:30 PM (ET)  6 San Francisco at 3 Dallas (CBS, Paramount+, Nickelodeon, Amazon Prime Video)

AFC:    8:15 PM (ET)  7 Pittsburgh at 2 Kansas City (NBC, Peacock, Telemundo)

Monday, January 17

NFC:    8:15 PM (ET)  5 Arizona at 4 Los Angeles Rams (ESPN/ABC, ESPN2, ESPN+, ESPN Deportes)

The Divisional Playoffs schedule will be announced next weekend.

The 2021 NFL Playoff field:

American Football ConferenceNational Football Conference
1.Tennessee Titans (12-5), AFC South champion1.Green Bay Packers (13-4), NFC North champion
2.Kansas City Chiefs (12-5), AFC West champion2.Tampa Bay Buccaneers (13-4), NFC South champion
3.Buffalo Bills (11-6), AFC East champion3.Dallas Cowboys (12-5), NFC East champion
4.Cincinnati Bengals (10-7), AFC North champion4.Los Angeles Rams (12-5), NFC West champion
5.Las Vegas Raiders (10-7)5.Arizona Cardinals (11-6)
6.New England Patriots (10-7)6.San Francisco 49ers (10-7)
7.Pittsburgh Steelers (9-7-1)7.Philadelphia Eagles (9-8)

MEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL

ILLINOIS CHICAGO 67 IUPUI 65

NBA SCOREBOARD

DETROIT 126 UTAH 116

CHARLOTTE 103 MILWAUKEE 99

BOSTON 101 INDIANA 98 OT

NEW YORK 111 SAN ANTONIO 96

PHILADELPHIA 111 HOUSTON 91

PORTLAND 114 BROOKLYN 108

CLEVELAND 109 SACRAMENTO 108

NHL SCOREBOARD

BOSTON 7 WASHINGTON 3

COLORADO 4 SEATTLE 3

LOS ANGELES 3 NY RANGERS 1

TOP INDIANA SPORTS NEWS

BROWN, TATUM CARRY CELTICS OVER PACERS 101-98 IN OT

BOSTON (AP) Jaylen Brown scored 26 points and Jayson Tatum had 24, carrying the Boston Celtics to a 101-98 overtime victory over the Indiana Pacers on Monday night in the first of a home-and-home series between the teams.

“We stuck with them and ran them a little bit longer, but we knew the importance of this game,” Boston coach Ime Udoka said of his two stars, Brown and Tatum.

Robert Williams III had 14 points and 12 rebounds for Boston, along with a key block in OT. The Celtics won for the fourth time in six games.

“We stayed together through the end of the game,” he said. “We went through adversity, a couple of arguments within the team (during the game).”

Pacers scoring leader Domantas Sabonis was held to 11 points but had 23 rebounds after scoring a career-best 42 points in his last game. He finished with a triple-double, adding 10 assists.

Boston is currently in a play-in playoff spot, 10th overall. Indiana is 13th.

Torrey Craig led the Pacers with 19 points and Lance Stephenson scored 14 but missed a potential tying 3-pointer late in OT. Indiana has lost seven of eight.

“Tough loss,” Indiana coach Rick Carlise said. “It’s a broken record, but I love the way we’re competing. We just could have had more to show for it tonight.”

Brown’s one-handed shot from the lane gave Boston a 93-91 edge with 2 1/2 minutes left in OT.

After Robert Williams blocked Oshae Brissett’s shot, Grant Williams nailed a 3 from the right corner for his only basket of the night.

The Pacers cut it to 98-95 and Stephenson’s 3 rimmed out with just under 10 seconds to play.

With Indiana trailing 101-98 after Tatum’s two free throws with 2.5 seconds left, Robert Williams stole Indiana’s long desperation pass from its own baseline and the horn sounded.

“We’ve been challenging each other and stepping up to the challenge,” Robert Williams said.

Brown recorded his first career triple-double in the Celtics’ last game, a win over the Knicks on Saturday.

Tatum’s fadaway jumper on the left baseline tied it at 89 with 1.8 seconds left in regulation.

“We were on our way to double team,” Carlise said. “There was a slight hesitation and he shot over Torrey. Lance was on the way, but he needed to go a little harder and little more decisively.”

Justin Holiday’s contested jumper from right in front of Boston’s bench bounced off the rim as the buzzer sounded, sending it to OT.

TIP-INS

Pacers: Sabonis entered the final quarter with just four points after his big game in a victory over Utah and missed two easy looks off offensive rebounds on the same possession midway into the third quarter. He also went to the floor after getting hit in the face trying to go up for a shot with no call. “He’s always going to fight,” Carlise said. “He got hit in the face a few times, but he just keeps coming.” … They missed 18 of their initial 22 from 3-point range. … They had only 60 points after three quarters.

Celtics: Robert Williams had a couple of crowd-pleasing put-back jams in what was a relatively uneventful first half. … Guard Payton Pritchard remains in the league’s health and safety protocol.

EASY TO FIND

Tatum wore sneakers that were florescent orange, which easily stood out with most of his teammates wearing white or black.

NO HURRY

Stephenson slowly dribbled the ball up the floor without any defensive pressure and was called for an eight-second violation in the third quarter.

PACERS IN AND OUT

Pacers guard Malcolm Brogdon missed his ninth straight game with a sore right Achilles tendon and guard Chris Duarte was sidelined due to personal reasons, but Craig returned after missing the last two games with right groin soreness. … Justin Anderson, Goga Bitadze, Caris LeVert and T.J. Warren are all in COVID-19 protocol.

UP NEXT

The teams meet again in Indiana on Wednesday night.

JACKSON JOINS HOOSIERS

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – The Indiana football program announced on Monday afternoon that outside linebacker Myles Jackson has joined the Hoosiers as a transfer from UCLA.

“Myles is a big, physical athlete who improves our defense,” IU head football coach Tom Allen said. “He can play multiple positions and we are excited for him to join us.”

Jackson, a 6-2, 250-pounder, played in seven games as a redshirt freshman in 2021. He totaled six tackles with one sack and one fumble recovery.

In 2020, Jackson suffered a season-ending knee injury in his collegiate debut and season opener at Colorado. He was named to the Athletic Director’s Honor Roll in the spring of 2020.

A native of Jonesboro, Ga., Jackson was rated the No. 21 weak-side defensive end coming out of Mill Creek High School.

INDIANA ADDS LINEBACKER CASEY

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – The Indiana football program announced on Monday morning that linebacker Jared Casey has joined the Hoosiers as a transfer from the University of Kentucky. Casey played in 23 games and totaled 29 tackles with two for loss over the last two seasons.

“We are looking forward to Jared joining us,” IU head coach Tom Allen said. “He brings athleticism and experience from the SEC and is a strong addition to our linebackers room.”

The 6-3, 220-pounder posted 20 stops, two for loss, in 2020. Casey was named to the SEC Fall Academic Honor Roll.

He appeared in three games and redshirted in 2019. Casey was a member of the Football Writers Association of American Freshman All-American Team.

A Louisville, Ky., native, Casey was a four-star prospect and ranked the No. 15 outside linebacker by Rivals out of Ballard High School.

BALL STATE RETURNS TO MACTION WITH ROAD TRIP TO AKRON

MUNCIE, Ind. – The Ball State Cardinals men’s basketball team returns to the hardwood on Tuesday for a Mid-American Conference showdown with the Akron Zips. The Cardinals enter the contest with a 7-7 overall record and are 2-1 in the MAC, while the Zips bring in an 8-4 mark and are 1-1 in conference play. The jump is scheduled for 7 p.m. from James A. Rhodes Arena.

BSU is coming off a 78-72 road victory against EMU. For the second time this season, the Cardinals had five players in double digits. Luke Bumbalough recorded his third game of the year with 20 points, with 20 in Saturday’s contest. He tied with Payton Sparks for the team lead in rebounding with six. Tyler Cochran finished with 15 points, including a perfect 5-for-5 at the free-throw line. Sparks added 11 points. Miryne Thomas and Demarius Jacobs each chipped in with 10 points. Jacobs notched a game-high four assists. Jaylin Sellers and Sparks each blocked a shot. Sellers added nine points and went a perfect 4-for-4 from the field along with a team-high three steals.

Bumbalough paces Ball State with 12.9 points per game and leads the team with 46 assists. Cochran enters Tuesday averaging 11.4 points per contest, while Sparks is averaging 10.6. Sparks continues to pave the way on the glass with 6.2 rebounds per game. Cochran and Thomas are averaging 5.1 and 5.0 rebounds per contest, respectively. Cochran has been a force on the defensive end all season and has a team-high 27 steals. Jacobs and Bumbalough have double-digit steals with 12 and 10 respectively. Sparks, Thomas, and Basheer Jihad are all tied for the team lead in blocks with six each.

As a team, the Cardinals are tied for 41st the NCAA and lead the MAC with a 3-point percentage of .372.

Akron leads the overall series with Ball State 26-18. The Zips are currently on a three-game winning streak against the Cardinals, including an 88-79 victory on Feb. 19, 2021, in Muncie. Akron is 15-6 in games played at home against BSU.

Ali Ali leads the Zips with 15.1 points per game. Enrique Freeman (12.3), Zavier Castaneda (11.3), and Bryan Trimble Jr. (10.8) round out the double-digit scoring for Akron. Freeman is a menace in the glass with 11.1 rebounds per game, which is tied for sixth in the nation and leads the MAC. Aziz Bandaogo leads Akron with 19 blocks, while Freeman is second with 12. Ali leads the team in assists with 34. Greg Tribble and Mikal Dawson are in double figures in steals with 12 and 11, respectively.

All of BSU’s games are presented on the Ball State Gainbridge Radio Network as well as Woof Boom Radio’s 96.7 FM, 102.9 FM, 104.9 FM, WLBC HD2, and the stream of 967BlakeFM.com as well as WERKFM.net.

IRISH HOME TILT WITH DUKE RESCHEDULED FOR MONDAY, JANUARY 31

The University of Notre Dame men’s basketball team matchup with Duke, originally scheduled for New Year’s Day, has been moved to Monday, January 31, 2022, at 7 p.m. on ESPN.

The original date was postponed due to COVID-19 safety precautions within the Duke men’s basketball program.

The rescheduled date will challenge the Irish with four games in seven days, starting with Virginia at home on Saturday, January 29th, the Duke game on Monday, then a two-game road swing to Miami (Wednesday, Feb. 2) and NC State (Saturday, Feb. 5).

The Notre Dame Ticket Office will contact ND vs. Duke customers in the near future with more ticket information about the rescheduled game.

IRISH HOME TILT WITH DUKE RESCHEDULED FOR MONDAY, JANUARY 31

The University of Notre Dame men’s basketball team matchup with Duke, originally scheduled for New Year’s Day, has been moved to Monday, January 31, 2022, at 7 p.m. on ESPN.

The original date was postponed due to COVID-19 safety precautions within the Duke men’s basketball program.

The rescheduled date will challenge the Irish with four games in seven days, starting with Virginia at home on Saturday, January 29th, the Duke game on Monday, then a two-game road swing to Miami (Wednesday, Feb. 2) and NC State (Saturday, Feb. 5).

The Notre Dame Ticket Office will contact ND vs. Duke customers in the near future with more ticket information about the rescheduled game.

JAGUARS DROP HOME THRILLER TO UIC, 67-65

INDIANAPOLIS – Sophomore Bakari LaStrap scored a career-high 16 points and Jonah Carrasco notched a career-best 10, but the Jaguars fell just short against UIC on Monday night (Jan. 10), 67-65.

Filip Skobalj swished a pivotal three from the top of the key in the final minute and the visiting Flames were perfect from the free throw line down the stretch to stave off the Jaguars. Nursing a three-point lead in the closing seconds, UIC (5-8, 1-3 HL) purposely fouled LaStrap and the sophomore guard hit the first of a one-and-one before intentionally missing the second. However, neither team was able to secure the rebound before the final horn sounded.

“I loved the fight (of the team),” head coach Matt Crenshaw said. “I think with adding back DePersia and having Bakari, we had some ballhandlers out there and it finally gave us the chance to get some easy baskets. We were able to stay locked in and not get discouraged when (UIC) made a run.

“I was encouraged by that.”

Kevin Johnson had a game-high 17 points and six assists in the win and Zion Griffin chimed in with 15 points. Jace Carter added 11 points in the win.

B.J. Maxwell also finished in double-digits for the Jaguars and Nathan McClure finished with nine points and six boards in the loss. IUPUI (1-12, 0-4 HL) shot a season-high 52 percent from the floor and tallied a season-high 65 points, doing so against one of the league’s better defensive teams.

“We’ve honestly been talking about this all season. We want to be able to take paint touch threes and early on throughout the season, we’ve been taking outside the perimeter, pass-pass-pass threes,” Crenshaw said. “The goal for us is to get to the second and third side of the floor, make the defense work and then continue to work for a good shot.”

After a sluggish start both ways, IUPUI built an early 8-3 lead on a pair of Maxwell threes and led the majority of the first half. The guests took a 21-19 lead when Jace Carter stroked a wing three, but Stanton later countered with a three of his own. The teams traded buckets down the stretch with the Flames ultimately taking a 29-28 lead to the locker room.

IUPUI got out to an eight-point lead at 50-42 with 8:10 left after Maxwell swished a pair of free throws, but UIC immediately countered with an 8-0 run to tie the score. Neither team led by more than three over the final seven minutes and Skobalj sank the game’s biggest shot with 36 seconds left.

UIC finished the game at 49 percent overall and 9-of-27 (33.3 percent) from three. IUPUI outrebounded the Flames 29-23 and each team committed 14 turnovers.

All eight Jaguars who saw playing time cracked the scoring column as Boston Stanton III had seven points and three boards and Azariah Seay had six, including a four in the closing minutes. Mike DePersia, who had missed the Jags’ previous three games, finished with three points and three assists.

The Jaguars will kickoff a two-game road trip on Thursday (Jan. 13) at Green Bay in an 8:00 p.m. Eastern tip-off inside the Resch Center. IUPUI will then cap the trip at Milwaukee on Saturday (Jan. 15). Both games will be broadcast on ESPN+.

SYCAMORE MEN TO FACE NORTHERN IOWA TUESDAY NIGHT IN CEDAR FALLS

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – Indiana State basketball puts its four-game winning streak on the line Tuesday night on the road against Northern Iowa. Tipoff is scheduled for 8 p.m. ET with the Panthers on ESPN+. The game will also be available on the radio on 105.5 The Legend in the Wabash Valley and on GoSycamores.com/Listen worldwide.

ISU will take on the Panthers with just seven players available due to COVID-19 protocols.

UNDER NEW LEADERSHIP

» First-year head coach Josh Schertz takes over the reins of the Sycamore basketball program. Schertz takes over after a 13-year run at NCAA Division II Lincoln Memorial University where he had a career record of 337-69 (.831) en route to four national coach of the year honors. Schertz led the Railsplitters to 10 NCAA Division II Tournament appearances, won 14 total conference championships and three Southeast Regional titles, and had five seasons of 30-or-more victories.

A LOOK AT THE SERIES

» Indiana State leads the all-time series with Northern Iowa 33-29 and has won six of the last 10 meetings between the two programs. The two squads split their meetings last season at UNI.

LOOKING AT UNI

» UNI enters the contest at 7-7 overall and 3-1 in the MVC action. The Panthers are led by AJ Green who averages 17.6 points, 3.2 rebounds and 2.2 assists per game. Noah Carter adds 12.7 points while Nate Heise rounds out the double-digits scorers for UNI with 10.5 points a game. In 14 games, UNI is averaging 74.6 points while holding its opponents to 69.1 points and 44.2 percent from the field.

HOBBS EARNS MVC NEWCOMER OF THE WEEK

» Zach Hobbs took advantage of playing time this past week as the Sycamores were down three starters due to COVID-19. The guard averaged 18.5 points, eight rebounds and 1.5 steals per game as ISU went 2-0, including their first MVC win of the season after taking down Bradley, 76-71. Hobbs was lights out in a 107-51 win over Midway where he put in a career-high 23 points on 9-for-16 shooting while finishing 5-for-9 from behind the arc. Hobbs also brought down seven rebounds against the Eagles. The 6-foot-5 guard continued where he left off on Sunday when he played all 40 minutes against the Braves — finishing with 14 points and a career-high nine rebounds in the win.

THOMAS STRONG DURING LAST WEEK

» Micah Thomas was dominant as he helped the Sycamores a 2-0 week on the hardwood. The guard averaged 17.5 points, 6.5 rebounds and six assists while also recording a trio of steals. Thomas put together one of his most complete games of the season during a 76-71 win over Bradley Sunday to give ISU its first MVC win of the season. He put in 18 points in the win while recording a career-high eight rebounds to go with four assists. Thomas also shot 4-for-9 from distance as the Trees made 15 3-pointers in the win. Thomas was also strong in ISU’s 107-51 win over Midway – a replacement game for Coppin State – where he scored 17 points on 6-for-11 shooting while grabbing five rebounds and dishing out a career-high eight assists while recording just one turnover.

PASSING THE CENTURY MARK

» Indiana State put on a rare scoring performance in a 107-51 win over Midway. The 107-point mark is the first time ISU has surpassed the century mark since 1999 with a 102-91 double-overtime win over Eastern Illinois and the first time ISU has done so in regulation since scoring 113 in a win over Millikin in 1984.

» Six Sycamores scored in double-digits in the win — the first time that had happened since 2017 against Ohio. ISU picked up career performances from three players including Zach Hobbs (23), Cameron Crawford (14) and Nick Hittle (11).

NEESE IS A PROBLEM FOR OPPOSING DEFENSES

» After posting career highs across the board during 2020-21, Cooper Neese has picked up where he left off. The junior is averaging 16.3 points to lead ISU and rank fifth in the MVC. Neese has scored in double-figures in 10 games this season, scoring 15 or more in nine games. His 29 makes from distance leads ISU and ranks seventh in the MVC.

» Neese scored a game-high 19 points and hit five 3-pointers in a win over Bradley Sunday. With the shots from deep, Neese moved into a tie with Chad Adkins (1996-99) for eighth all-time in career 3-pointers (149). Guard Tyreke Key sits in seventh with 153 career threes.

HENRY A MATCHUP NIGHTMARE

» Cameron Henry has either made or assisted on 29 percent of all Indiana State field goals. He is averaging 14.1 points, 6.3 rebounds and 3.3 assists per game. His scoring output is 12th, rebounding ranks seventh, while his assist average ranks sixth in the MVC.

» Henry has scored in double-figures in nine games for Indiana State — including a pair of double-doubles. Over three games at the Myrtle Beach Invitational, Henry put up All-MVC like numbers. The 6-foot-6 guard averaged 17.3 points, nine rebounds and 5.7 assists per game while going for a career-high 25 points against Oklahoma in the semifinals. For his performance, he was named to the All-Tournament Second Team.

BLEDSON DOES IT ALL

» You have to see it in person to truly appreciate the offensive awareness of Xavier Bledson. The guard leads the Sycamores with 42 assists, recording multiple assists in all games he has seen action including a season-high 10 assists against Alabama A&M. Bledson leads the MVC with 4.7 assists per game. To go with his passing, Bledson is also averaging double-figure scoring at 12.1 points per game, scoring 15 points or more in five games.

INDIANA STATE SOFTBALL ANNOUNCES 2022 SCHEDULE

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. – Indiana State softball head coach Mike Perniciaro has released the Sycamores’ schedule for the 2022 season.

The 51-game schedule includes 24 non-conference games and a 27-game conference slate.

The schedule consists of 15 home games at Price Field and has the Sycamores playing in seven different states throughout the season.

“We are looking forward to hitting the field very soon. We have a veteran group of players with experience as well as a handful of young players who will add talent to the team.  Our non-conference schedule will give us an opportunity to play some quality competition which will help prepare us for the Valley,” Perniciaro said. “I expect the conference to be ultra-competitive. Knowing the depth of our league, you have to be ready to compete every weekend.”

Indiana State opens their season with an extended road stretch that includes five round-robin style tournaments.

The Sycamores will play at the Stetson Lead-Off Classic (Feb. 11-13) in DeLand, Florida with games against Delaware, Georgia State and Stetson to begin their spring season. Indiana State will then head to Chattanooga, Tennessee for the Chattanooga Challenge (Feb. 18-20) with games against Purdue Fort Wayne, Radford, SIUE, Tennessee Tech and Northwestern State.

The road trip continues as the Sycamores will head to Birmingham, Alabama for the Samford Bulldog Classic (Feb. 25-27) with matchups against Boston College, Samford and Nicholls State. A week later, Indiana State will travel to Memphis, Tennessee for the Blues City Classic (Mar. 4-6) where they will face IUPUI, Iowa, Butler, UT-Martin and Memphis.

Indiana State will wrap up their tournament play in Cookeville, Tennessee at the Golden Eagle Classic (Mar. 11-13) with games against Bellarmine, Quinnipiac and Tennessee Tech.

Other non-conference action includes a home matchup against Butler (Apr. 6).

Missouri Valley Conference action will begin with a home series against Valparaiso (Mar. 19-20). The Sycamores will also host conference series against Bradley (Mar. 26-27), Drake (Apr. 15-16) and Loyola (May 6-7). Indiana State will travel for series at Illinois State (Apr. 2-3), Missouri State (Apr. 9-10), Southern Illinois (Apr. 23-24) and Northern Iowa (Apr. 30-May 1). Evansville will come to Terre Haute for a doubleheader (Apr. 20) with the series then finishing with in Evansville (Apr. 27).

The MVC Tournament will be hosted by Missouri State in Springfield, Missouri (May 11-14).

DATES ANNOUNCED FOR POSTPONED CONTESTS

ST. LOUIS – The Missouri Valley Conference has announced rescheduling dates for postponed games including those which impacted the University of Evansville men’s basketball team.  Those rescheduled contests have resulted in additional game-day shifts for two other contests.  A total of seven Conference games are impacted.  Notably, to date, the league had postponed six men’s basketball games, and all six have been rescheduled.

The Conference office will continue to work in conjunction with its member schools and television partners throughout the rescheduling process.  Adjusted games, with new dates, times and television network designations, include the following:

Jan. 21 — Evansville at Illinois State, 6 pm CT (ESPN+/ESPN3)

Jan. 23 — Illinois State at Evansville, 1 pm CT (MVC TV Network)

Feb. 8 — Evansville at Indiana State, 6 pm CT (ESPN+/ESPN3)

Feb. 10 — Indiana State at Evansville, 6 pm CT (ESPN+/ESPN3)

BROWN NAMED MVC NEWCOMER OF THE WEEK

After posting a pair of strong performances which helped the Valpo women’s basketball team to its first-ever sweep of the UNI/Drake weekend of the MVC schedule, junior Olivia Brown (East Grand Rapids, Mich./East Grand Rapids [St. Bonaventure]) was named the MVC Newcomer of the Week on Monday afternoon.

Brown opened the weekend by pouring in a game-high 18 points in Valpo’s come-from-behind win over UNI. She hit 7-of-10 from the floor, including the layup with 1:15 to play in the game which gave the Beacons their first lead of the contest, and was 3-for-4 from behind the 3-point line.

Brown followed that performance with an 11-point effort on Sunday in the victory over Drake. Brown scored eight of her 11 points, which came on 4-of-8 shooting and 2-for-4 from 3-point range, in the first half to help stake Valpo to a nine-point halftime lead en route to the team’s first win over the Bulldogs in program history.

For the weekend, Brown averaged a team-best 14.5 points/game on 61.1% shooting from the floor and 62.5% shooting from the 3-point arc. Brown has scored in double figures in each of her last three games and has connected on 10 3-pointers over that stretch.

HCAC 2021 MEN’S BASKETBALL NOTEBOOK, WEEK 9

Athlete of the Week:
Brandon Christlieb (Ashley, Ind.) Manchester University | Forward | Sophomore – Christlieb played an instrumental role in Manchester’s two wins last week. Christlieb scored 25 points on the road at rival Anderson, helping the Spartans to an 87-84 victory – its first win at Anderson since 2009. Christlieb shot 8-16 from the floor, 4-8 from three, and 5-6 from the free throw line against Anderson. He also added eight rebounds, three assists, and two steals against Anderson. Followed Wednesday’s performance with 26 points on Saturday in an 83-82 win over MSJ. Playing only six players against the Lions, Christlieb poured in 26 points in 38 minutes of action. Shot 11-17 from the floor. He added eight rebounds and two steals. Manchester has won three straight. Christlieb averaged 25.5 ppg, eight rpg, and two spg on the strength of 19-33 shooting (.576).
 
Notable Performances:

  • Maurice Knight (Frankton, Ind.) Anderson University | Wing | Senior – Knight posted averages of 24 points and 7.5 rebounds as the Ravens went 1-1 last week. Knight notched 34 points and 10 rebounds, while playing all 40 minutes on Wednesday against Manchester. He then turned in 14 points and five rebounds during Saturday’s win against Franklin.
  • Ty Houston (Union, Ky.) Hanover College | Guard | Junior – Houston helped guide the Panthers to a 2-0 overall week and the top spot in the HCAC as they defeated both MSJ and Earlham. The junior averaged 17.5 ppg, turning in 16 points with five rebounds against MSJ. In the contest against Earlham, he netted a game-high 19 points with seven rebounds and game-high four steals.
  • Miles McGowen (Mooresville, Ind.) Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology | Forward | First-Year – McGowen scored a career-high 16 points and grabbed nine rebounds to lead Rose-Hulman in a 71-64 win over Franklin in the team’s only game last week. McGowen was 7-10 from the field in 28 minutes of action.

HCAC 2021 WOMEN’S BASKETBALL NOTEBOOK, WEEK 9

Athlete of the Week:
Lexi Dellinger (Berne, Ind.) Anderson University | Guard | Senior – Dellinger racked up averages of 27 points and 4.5 steals as the Ravens went 1-1 last week. She contributed 20 points and four steals against Manchester on Wednesday. Dellinger then poured in 34 points and came up with five steals during Saturday’s win against Franklin.
 
Notable Performances:

  • Brianna Gillig (New Riegel, Ohio) Bluffton University | Forward | Senior – Gillig was too much for the Jackets, going for a game-high 28 points in 43 minutes of action as Bluffton downed rival Defiance 76-71 in OT on Wednesday night. She finished with eight rebounds, two assists and four steals while going 2-of-3 from outside the arc.
  • Addie Gardner (Anderson, Ind.) Hanover College | Guard | Sophomore – Gardner netted a team-high 21 points with three steals and one rebound. She finished the contest shooting 3-for-5 from three-pointer.
  • Hannah Lindsey (Speedway, Ind.) Manchester University | Guard | Junior – Lindsey posted a career performance in Manchester’s 71-56 win over Anderson in its lone game of the week on Wednesday night. Lindsey posted a career-high 21 points, finishing 4-11 from the field, 3-6 from three and a perfect 10-10 from the foul line. She also added six rebounds. Entering Wednesday’s game, Lindsey had only scored seven total points on the season. The boost from Lindsey helped Manchester improve to 6-5, 3-1 HCAC on the season.
  • Chloe Jansen (Fort Thomas, Ky.) Mount St. Joseph University | Guard | Junior – Jansen got the new year started right leading the Lions past Hanover last Wednesday. Jansen finished with a team-high 25 points while also adding five rebounds and four assists.
  • Jordan Barlow (Haven, Kan.) Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology | Forward | Junior – Barlow scored 17 points and tied a career-high with 14 rebounds to lead Rose-Hulman in a 69-31 victory over Franklin. Barlow was 7-11 from the field with two blocked shots in 27 minutes of action as Rose-Hulman won its fourth straight game to move to 6-4 and 4-1 in league play. 

HCAC 2021 MEN’S AND WOMEN’S SWIMMING AND DIVING NOTEBOOK, WEEK 9

Athletes of the Week:
Men’s Swimming Athlete of the Week:
Vineet Ranade (Mountain View, Calif.) Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology | First-Year – Vineet won the 200-breaststroke (2:14.97) and 200-individual medley (1:59.69) to help Rose-Hulman defeat DePauw 169-111 in men’s dual meet action. Ranade was also second in the 100-breaststroke with a time of 1:01.66.
Men’s Diving Athlete of the Week:
John Dinkel (Alexandria, Va.) Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology | First-Year – Dinkel swept first place honors in the 1-meter (204.60 points) and 3-meter (208.80 points) events as Rose-Hulman defeated DePauw 169-111 at the Sports and Recreation Center on Friday.
Women’s Swimming Athlete of the Week:
Lauren Meyer (South Bend, Ind.) Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology | Sophomore – Meyer had two runner-up finishes and one third place performance in a dual meet against nationally competitive DePauw. Meyer was second in the 100-butterfly (1:04.13) and 200-individual medley (2:27.16). She placed third in the 100-breaststroke (1:14.19).
Women’s Diving Athlete of the Week:
Audrey Hankins (Lynn Haven, Fla.) Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology | First-Year – Hankins won both in 1-meter (188.75) and 3-meter (131.00) diving to lead Rose-Hulman’s performance in a 206-72 loss to DePauw on Friday.

RHIT WOMEN’S SWIM-DIVE SWEEPS HCAC WEEKLY HONORS

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. — Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology sophomore Lauren Meyer and freshman Audrey Hankins earned Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference Women’s Swimming and Diving Athlete of the Week awards, in results released on Monday by the league office.

The duo helped lead Rose-Hulman’s performance in a dual meet loss to DePauw University on Friday night at the Sports and Recreation Center.

Hankins led Rose-Hulman individual finishes with victories in both 1-meter and 3-meter diving.  Hankins scored 188.75 points in 1-meter and 131.00 points in the 3-meter event.

Meyer paced the swimming performance with runner-up finishes in the 100-butterfly (1:04.13) and 200-individual medley (2:27.16).  She also came home third in the 100-breaststroke (1:14.19).

This marks the first career HCAC weekly award for both Hankins and Meyer.

Rose-Hulman returns to action on Saturday afternoon at Washington University in St. Louis.

RHIT MEN’S SWIM-DIVE SWEEPS HCAC WEEKLY HONORS

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. — Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology freshmen Vineet Ranade and John Dinkel earned Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference Men’s Swimming and Diving Athlete of the Week awards, in results released on Monday by the league office.

The duo helped Rose-Hulman pick up a 169-111 victory over DePauw University on Friday night at the Sports and Recreation Center.

Ranade won two events and added a second-place finish to highlight the individual swimming performances on Friday.  He captured first-place honors in both the 200-breaststroke (2:14.97) and 200-individual medley (1:59.69).  Ranade also came home as the runner-up in the 100-breaststroke (1:01.66).

Dinkel swept the 1-meter (204.60 points) and 3-meter (208.80) diving events to help Rose-Hulman capture a total of 10 event wins on Friday.

This marks the second time this season that Dinkel has been named HCAC Men’s Diver of the Week, and the second time that Ranade has earned HCAC Men’s Swimmer of the Week accolades.

Rose-Hulman returns to action on Saturday afternoon at Washington University in St. Louis.

WOMEN’S BASKETBALL: DELLINGER EARNS HCAC ATHLETE OF THE WEEK

Anderson University women’s basketball senior Lexi Dellinger (Berne, Ind. / South Adams) earned the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference (HCAC) Athlete of the Week, which was announced by the conference on Monday.

Dellinger received her fourth career HCAC Athlete-of-the-Week selection, including her third this season.

Anderson (6-7, 3-3) went 1-1 in two HCAC games last week. The Ravens fell to Manchester University (6-5, 3-1) by a score of 71-56 on Wednesday in North Manchester. Anderson then outlasted Franklin College (4-8, 2-3) by a score of 68-64 on Saturday in O.C. Lewis Gymnasium.

Dellinger racked up averages of 27 points and 4.5 steals as the Ravens went 1-1 last week. She contributed 20 points and four steals against Manchester. Dellinger then poured in 34 points and came up with five steals against Franklin.

Anderson takes on Defiance College (7-4, 2-3) in HCAC action on Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. in Defiance, Ohio.

TAYLOR ATHLETICS | JAMES DUBBED CROSSROADS LEAGUE PLAYER OF THE WEEK

JACKSON, Mich. – The Crossroads League has announced yet another collection of weekly awards, the second of 2022, in which Taylor senior, Lauren James, was recognized as the Women’s Basketball Player of the Week.

James was a pivotal performer for the Trojans in their two-win week, scoring an average of 21.5 points per game while shooting 47.1 percent from deep. Even more impressive, the All-American was perfect from the free-throw line, capitalizing on all 13 trips to the charity stripe.

As if that were not enough, though, James made sure to secure the victory in both games by dominating down the stretch, averaging 13.0 points in the two fourth quarters alone.

Taylor tipped-off the week against Bethel (7-11, 2-4 CL) on the road, a game in which James pocketed 19 points and eight assists, along with three steals on the defensive end. The Seymour, Indiana, native shot 45.5 percent from the field and scored 12 of her 19 points in the final frame, in which she posted a 4-4 clip from deep.

The second game of the week for the Trojans took place in Winona Lake, where they entered into overtime for the first time in the 2021-2022 season against Grace (10-7, 1-5 CL). This time James led all scorers with a season-high 24 points, while gathering eight rebounds alongside. Once again the senior standout stood out in the fourth quarter, scoring 14 points on 4-5 shooting from three-point land to help Taylor withstand a potential Lancer comeback.

James leads the team in points-per-game for the season, now averaging 14.5 while sitting in the top-five in the league with a 41.3-percent shooting percentage from three.

This week’s award is James’s fourth-career recognition, and the first weekly award for the Taylor women’s basketball team in the 2021-2022 season.

Taylor athletes now boast 20 Crossroads League or MSFA Player-of-the-Week awards in the 2021-2022 athletic year.

James and the Trojans (9-9, 3-3 CL) are back in action on Saturday, January 15th, when they play host to the Saint Francis Cougars (9-5, 3-2 CL) inside Odle Arena at 1:00 pm.

TOP NATIONAL SPORTS NEWS

Georgia snaps 41-year title drought with 33-18 win over Bama

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) Confetti rained down on Georgia. The Bulldogs fans chanted “Kir-by, Kir-by!”

Four decades of pent-up emotion were unleashed Monday night as the Bulldogs snapped a national championship frustrating drought by vanquishing their nemesis.

Stetson Bennett delivered the biggest throws of his storybook career and the Georgia’s defense sealed the sweetest victory in program history, beating Alabama 33-18 for its first title in 41 years.

“I’ve never been around a group of players that really wanted it so bad and wouldn’t be denied,” Georgia coach Kirby Smart said. “I told the guys in the locker room just take a picture of this.”

Smart, a Bulldogs defensive back in the mid-1990s, returned to his alma mater in 2016 after helping Nick Saban build a dynasty as an assistant at Alabama.

Georgia has become an elite program under Smart, but has not been able to chase down its Southeastern Conference rival.

Until now.

“This was for all the glory, we took it,” defensive tackle Jordan Davis said.

And they did it the way Alabama has broken their hearts so many times in recent years: Coming from behind and finishing with a flourish.

Bennett connected with Adonai Mitchell on a 40-yard touchdown to give No. 3 Georgia a 19-18 lead with 8:09 left and then hooked up with Brock Bowers for a 15-yard TD on a screen to put the Bulldogs up eight with with 3:33 left.

The final blow came from Georgia’s dominant defense. Kelee Ringo intercepted an underthrown deep ball down the sideline by Heisman Trophy winner Bryce Young.

“I just saw the ball in his hands and that was all she wrote,” said safety Lewis Cine, the game’s defensive MVP.

With just over a minute left, Ringo took off behind a convoy of blockers and went 79 yards, Smart chasing and yelling at him to go down so he wouldn’t risk a fumble. The touchdown set off a wild celebration by the relieved Georgia fans who packed Lucas Oil Stadium.

“There’s going to be some property torn up in Indianapolis tonight,” Smart said, paraphrasing the late Georgia play-by-play man Larry Munson.

The Bulldogs (14-1) hadn’t won a national title since freshman Herschel Walker led them there in 1980. If simply snapping the drought wasn’t good enough, doing it against No. 1 Alabama (13-2) made it even better.

“I cried, so pretty good,” Bennett said when asked how it felt.

Saban’s Tide had won seven straight against the Bulldogs.

The Bulldogs lost two SEC championship games, including one five weeks ago, and the 2018 CFP title game to Alabama under Smart.

“I told them we burned the boats. The only way home was through them,” Smart said.

Mission accomplished.

Bennett, the former walk-on turned starter, finished 17 for 26 for 224 yards and no interceptions.

For most of the first three quarters, the first CFP title game to be a rematch of a regular-season game was an ol’ fashion SEC defensive struggle in the heart of Big Ten country.

The first touchdown came with 1:20 left in the third quarter. After James Cook broke a 67-yard run to get the Bulldogs into the red zone, three more running plays – and a facemask penalty by Alabama – got them into the end zone. Zamir White went in standing up from a yard out with massive defensive tackles Jalen Carter and Davis leading the way as blockers. The Bulldogs led for the first time, 13-9.

After Alabama added another field goal, the Tide caught a break on strange turnover.

As Bennett was being taken down deep in Georgia territory, he tried to throw the ball away. The ball slipped loose, and bounced toward the sideline, seemingly harmless. Alabama’s Drew Sanders casually caught it as he was jogging out of bounds.

Surprisingly, the ruling on the field was a fumble, recovered by the Tide and replay upheld it, giving the Tide the ball in the red zone. A few plays later, Young eluded the rush and found Cameron Latu for a 3-yard touchdown that put Alabama up 18-13 with 10:14 left.

Once again, it seemed as if Georgia would not be able to break the Alabama curse.

Bennett was 13 for 22 for 141 yards as the next drive started, and you could practically hear all skeptical Georgia fans wondering why Smart didn’t turn to his four-star back-up QB, J.T. Daniels, for a spark.

As he has done so many times during a career that started on the scout team and took a detour through junior college in Mississippi, the small-town Georgia kid nicknamed The Mailman came through.

Bennett completed all three of his passes for 68 yards, including a long strike to Mitchell for a touchdown with 8:09 left that gave the Bulldogs a one-point lead after a failed 2-point conversion.

The Bulldogs’ defense clamped down on Young, forcing a three-and-out on the Tide’s next drive, and then Georgia went to work on sealing a long-awaited championship.

“It’s a little tough that I let them down today,” Young said. “I’ve got to do better with it.”

The sophomore finished 35 for 57 for 359 yards with two interceptions, playing his top two receivers for most of the game. All American Jameson Williams went out early in the second quarter with a knee injury, and John Metchie III was injured in the SEC title game.

Young was sacked three times after Georgia didn’t bring him down once in the first meeting.

“We played a heck of a game against a heck of a team for the first three quarters of the game,” said Saban, who was denied his eight national title, seventh with Alabama in the last 13 years. “Nobody can take the SEC championship away from this team, the Cotton Bowl championship.

“We just didn’t finish the way we needed to finish.”

After more than 40 years, it was Georgia’s time to finish.

“You you put as much time as we do in this thing, blood, sweat, tears,” Bennett said, ‘it means something.”

CFP TALKS STALL, DIMMING HOPES OF EXPANSION BEFORE 2026

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) College Football Playoff expansion talks remain stalled and the possibility of implementing a new format by the 2024 season dimmed Monday after three days of meetings failed to produce an agreement.

“We have entrenched issues that are no closer to be resolved, ” Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby said.

While Bowlsby said it looked increasingly unlikely that an expanded playoff would come before the end of the current CFP contract that expires in 2026, it was not ruled out altogether.

“We’re going into overtime,” Executive Director Bill Hancock said, hours before No. 1 Alabama and No. 3 Georgia played for the College Football Playoff national championship.

Everybody involved supports expansion, but they are hung up on the how and when.

Hancock said the management committee, comprised of 10 conference commissioners and Notre Dame’s athletic director, are still stuck on the same lingering issues: Whether conferences should have automatic qualification into an expanded field, and which ones; how bowls will be used as sites in a new system; and athlete health and welfare issues related to more games.

Mississippi State President Mark Keenum, who heads the Board of Managers that has final say over the College Football Playoff, said he remains optimistic an agreement can be reached in time to add playoff spots by the 2024 season.

“I think we’ll get there,” Keenum said.

A proposal for a 12-team playoff has been on the table since June. That proposal calls for the six highest ranked conference champions, regardless of conference, to be in the playoff field along with the next six highest ranked teams.

There was hope initially an agreement could be reached soon enough to have it implemented for the 2024 season, two years before the current CFP contract with ESPN expires.

“I think it was received favorably. Since then we’ve spent time on it, some don’t like it now,” Bowlsby said.

Expansion before end of the contract has been estimated to be worth an extra $450 million dollars for the conferences to split.

Bowlsby was part of a four-person subcommittee, along with Southeastern Conference Commissioner Greg Sankey, Mountain West Commissioner Craig Thompson and Notre Dame AD Jack Swarbrick that spent two years working on the 12-team plan.

That came after the Pac-12 and Big Ten began calling for expansion of the playoff in 2018.

Unanimous consensus among the management committee members is needed to alter to the current deal. Bowlsby said a vote was taken this weekend among the management committee members, but declined to reveal the results.

Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren has said he supports a 12-team format that provides automatic bids for the Power Five conference champions. American Athletic Conference Commissioner Mike Aresco has said he is adamantly opposed to any format that gives Power Five conferences special access.

“Everybody is more concerned about their own silo than everybody else’s,” Bowlsby said.

Sankey said the SEC has already made a huge concession by agreeing to expand from the current four-team format.

“We were never asking for more than four,” Sankey said. “An enormous give has been to engage in the conversation and a willingness to shift. To ask two teams here today to play yet another game, that’s an enormous give and I cannot state that more clearly. And that’s been missed in this.”

The SEC is the only conference to be represented in the playoff during each of its eight seasons. Monday night’s game will mark the second time two SEC teams have played for the national championship. No other conference has had that.

“That give was because we have to have college football supported nationally. It is a national championship,” Sankey said.

Hancock had previously tried to set a deadline of sorts, saying if the commissioners could not come to a consensus on a new format by these meetings, expansion could not happen until after the current deal is complete. The playoff field would remain at four teams until 2026.

But Keenum said the commissioners will get together again in the next few weeks to keep working on a plan that everyone can support.

The meetings in Indianapolis were the seventh time the commissioners have gathered in in-person to discuss expansion since the 12-team format was made public in June.

Bowlsby compared the process since to the movie “Groundhog Day,” where every day repeats for the main character and called it “frustrating.”

Sankey tried to stay pragmatic.

“Not trying to resolve issues is not an option,” he said. “Whether they can be resolved is an open-ended question.”

MIAMI DOLPHINS FIRE COACH BRIAN FLORES AFTER 3 SEASONS

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (AP) Back-to-back winning seasons were not enough for Brian Flores to keep his job as coach of the Miami Dolphins.

The Dolphins fired Flores on Monday, a somewhat surprising move that came less than 24 hours after the team finished a 9-8 season. Flores went 24-25 while failing to make the playoffs in his three seasons in Miami, but finishing this year with eight wins in the final nine games.

The primary issues that Dolphins owner Stephen Ross cited for the decision seemed to have little to do with the on-field product and more with communication within the team’s braintrust – though there were no specific examples offered of how the team determined Flores wasn’t the right fit in those regards.

“I’ve been looking at this over three years now and watching the organization grow,” Ross said. “I think an organization can only function if it’s collaborative and it works well together, and I don’t think we were really working well as an organization … to win consistently at the NFL level.”

It wasn’t a total housecleaning: General manager Chris Grier is being retained. Grier has been with the Dolphins for 22 years, the last six seasons as GM and the last three of those overseeing all football operations.

Ross spoke highly of the work done to the roster over those three years.

“If you look at our roster, we have a very fine, I think excellent, roster of young players,” Ross said. “This was all done in the last three years. We had an old, aging roster before it that was leading us nowhere but to mediocrity. And I think if you look at our roster today, you see our salary cap, the players we have, I think we’re well-suited for the future.”

It was already shaping up to be an offseason where the Dolphins would go through what has almost become an annual tradition of sorts, that being the process where they determine if their current starting quarterback should be their starter for the future.

And that dance – to stay with Tua Tagovailoa or not – will surely still happen.

The Dolphins considered trading for embattled Houston quarterback Deshaun Watson this past fall and may do so again; Grier, in his last remarks to media in early November, said if someone viewed “as being one of the top players around the league” comes available “at any position, you look at it and try and go for it.”

“It’ll be up to the head coach in terms of what he does with the quarterback,” Ross said. “As I’ve said before, I have a lot of confidence in Tua.”

Ross is a Michigan graduate and the largest donor in that university’s history, and the Dolphins could look at Wolverines coach Jim Harbaugh as one of the possible candidates to take over.

But Ross, professing his love for Harbaugh, tried to quell that possibility, saying he won’t be the person who takes the coach away from Michigan.

“I have no coach in mind at this point,” Ross said. “We’re going to do a thorough review and interview process.”

Flores was hired in February 2019 and immediately began overseeing a rebuild. Miami started 0-7 in his first season, 1-3 last season and 1-7 this season. His teams always found ways to get better as the season went along, going 20-8 in games played in November, December and January.

“The credit goes to the players, coaches,” Flores said after Sunday’s 33-24 win over New England, one that finished off the Dolphins’ first sweep of the Patriots since 2000. “I am always going to feel like and wish I could have done more. And our guys did work hard, from the players and coaches, obviously our support staff. It’s a special group. I’m happy, I’m proud to be a part of it.”

The next morning, he wasn’t a part of it anymore.

“I’m sick,” Dolphins cornerback Nik Needham tweeted.

The next Miami coach will be the team’s 11th since its most recent playoff victory on Dec. 30, 2000. Dave Wannstedt was the coach that day; the coaches that have followed, in order, were Jim Bates, Nick Saban, Cam Cameron, Tony Sparano, Todd Bowles, Joe Philbin, Dan Campbell, Adam Gase and Flores.

THE LAST TWO

Miami went a combined 19-14 over the past two seasons. Only nine teams – Green Bay, Kansas City, Tampa Bay, Buffalo, the Los Angeles Rams, Pittsburgh, New Orleans and Indianapolis – were better in that span.

CAP MATTERS

The Dolphins could have about $75 million in cap space this offseason, though a significant chunk of that would disappear if they acquired Watson. There are also big free agent decisions to make in-house, such as defensive end Emmanuel Ogbah, tight end Mike Gesicki and wide receiver Mack Hollins. A speedy wideout to stretch defenses will surely be sought; Miami tried this season with Will Fuller, who was paid $10 million and caught four passes before getting hurt.

TUA’S TIME

Tagovailoa has started 21 games for the Dolphins. That’s not a big sample size, except by Miami standards. Only three quarterbacks in the post-Dan Marino era – Ryan Tannehill (88), Jay Fiedler (58) and Chad Henne (31) – got more regular-season starts for Miami than Tagovailoa.

THE DROUGHT

Miami’s last playoff win was just over 21 years ago and counting. Of the 31 other NFL teams, 29 have at least one win in that span, with Detroit and Cincinnati (which has a chance to change that this coming week) being the exceptions. New England has a league-high 30 playoff wins since Miami’s last postseason victory.

NEXT STEPS

Other than finding a coach, other top priorities will be deciding whether to re-sign Gesicki and looking at the landscape to see how the offensive line and running game can be improved.

BEARS OPT TO MAKE SWEEPING CHANGES, FIRE GM PACE, COACH NAGY

CHICAGO (AP) The Chicago Bears fired general manager Ryan Pace and coach Matt Nagy on Monday, hoping new leadership in the front office and on the sideline will lift a struggling franchise.

Nagy’s fate seemed sealed as the Bears struggled through a 6-11 season that ended with a loss at Minnesota on Sunday. But it was not clear if Pace also would be let go or retained in either his role or a different capacity.

Whoever the Bears hire will need to develop rookie quarterback Justin Fields and surround the former Ohio State star with more talent to help him develop. They will have to address a defense that has slipped in recent seasons. More than anything, it will be their jobs to turn around a franchise with just seven playoff appearances in the past 30 years.

The Bears went 48-65 with one winning season and made the postseason twice in the seven years since Pace was hired out of New Orleans’ front office in 2015 to replace Phil Emery. Nagy went 34-31 in four seasons.

“They took a chance on me. They took a chance on a poor kid from Cincinnati who people looked at as if he wasn’t going to be good enough to even get a chance to play,” said running back David Montgomery, who’s from the Cincinnati area and played at Iowa State. “That’s why it’s emotional for me.”

The Bears have not won in the postseason since the 2010 team advanced to the NFC championship game.

Pace’s tenure was marred by his inability to settle the quarterback position. He whiffed when he traded up a spot to draft Mitchell Trubisky over Patrick Mahomes with the No. 2 pick in 2017. He also signed Mike Glennon, traded for Nick Foles and paid up for Andy Dalton. And Fields’ future is an ongoing question.

Nagy led Chicago to a 12-4 record and NFC North championship in 2018 after the Bears hired him off Andy Reid’s staff in Kansas City. But things fizzled after that.

Chairman George McCaskey opted to stick with Pace and Nagy last January after Chicago went 8-8 in the regular season for the second year in a row. He seemed to tie them together at the time when he cited a culture they set that allowed the team to bounce back from a six-game losing streak to make the playoffs – as the seventh and final seed in an expanded field. Chicago lost in convincing fashion at New Orleans, but McCaskey insisted Pace and Nagy were “the best people to lead us in 2021.”

The Bears were never really in contention this season.

They dropped eight of nine games before winning two of the final three. Frustrated fans made their feelings clear, chanting “Fire Nagy! Fire Nagy!”

“I thought we underachieved,” cornerback Jaylon Johnson said. “We have the players to be a contending team, and then for us not to get to the playoffs, it’s definitely disappointing.”

Nagy was a breath of fresh air when he arrived. The Bears made a worst-to-first leap in his first year after John Fox led them to a 14-34 record over three seasons and the second-worst winning percentage by a Chicago coach.

Nagy was chosen as the Coach of the Year. Pace, who made a blockbuster trade with Oakland for star pass rusher Khalil Mack just before the 2018 season, took top executive honors from The Sporting News.

Mack’s arrival transformed a solid defense into one of the NFL’s best and helped catapult the Bears to their first playoff appearance since 2010. Trubisky made the Pro Bowl as an alternate.

Nagy helped energize the fan base with a fun-loving demeanor, turning the locker room into “Club Dub” to celebrate victories and running trick plays with names like “Santa’s Sleigh.” The season ended with a gut-wrenching loss to Philadelphia in a wild-card game at Soldier Field, punctuated by former kicker Cody Parkey’s double-doink miss off the left upright and crossbar.

Things declined from there.

“I feel like Coach Nagy did a really good job of trying to make us have fun,” offensive lineman James Daniels said.

But was Daniels put in the best position to succeed?

“I can’t answer that question,” he said. “How I will answer that question, I do feel like no matter what position the coach has put us in, I think for like (me) personally, I could have played better in the situations.”

Chicago never finished higher than 21st on offense under Nagy, and that was in his first year. The Bears were 24th overall and 27th in scoring this season. Nagy handed off play-calling duties to offensive coordinator Bill Lazor each of the past two years in an effort to jolt a struggling unit.

The new coach will have to unlock the potential in Fields after an uneven rookie season for the No. 11 overall draft pick. Though he flashed the physical skills, he had more interceptions (10) than touchdown passes (seven) and an unimpressive 73.2 passer rating. The Bears were 2-8 in the games he started.

VIKINGS SEEK NEW LEADERSHIP, FIRE GM SPIELMAN, COACH ZIMMER

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) The Minnesota Vikings have started fresh with a search for replacements for general manager Rick Spielman and coach Mike Zimmer after a second straight absence from the playoffs for a 61-year-old franchise still seeking its first title.

The dual firings came one day after the 45th anniversary of Minnesota’s last Super Bowl appearance, after owners Zygi Wilf and Mark Wilf met with each of the top two leaders before addressing the players at team headquarters.

“We strongly believe we need new leadership to elevate our football team. Our goal is to consistently contend and win championships,” Mark Wilf said on a virtual news conference. “There’s not just one person that’s responsible. We’re clearly disappointed in the football results this year, and over the course of the past few weeks this is something we’ve been thinking and deliberating quite a bit on.”

Zimmer went 72-56-1 in eight seasons, the third-best winning percentage in team history, plus 2-3 in the postseason. The Vikings went 15-18 over the last two years. They won the NFC North in 2015 and 2017, but in the end the state of the division was the same as at the beginning of the Zimmer era – with rival Green Bay in firm control.

Zimmer went 7-8-1 against the Packers and found as much success against three-time NFL MVP Aaron Rodgers as anyone, but the overall deterioration of the once-dominant defense he built soon after his arrival was a big part of what led to his dismissal. The Vikings gave up a league-most 146 points in the final 2 minutes of either half or overtime.

The 65-year-old Zimmer had the seventh-longest tenure among head coaches in the NFL this season, with the 25 others in the league all hired within the last five years. The six peers ahead of him on the seniority list have all won a Super Bowl: Bill Belichick, Sean Payton, Mike Tomlin, John Harbaugh, Pete Carroll and Andy Reid.

“As an older guy, I don’t know how much longer I’m going to play. I’m excited that we’re not far away, and if we get the right people in here we could potentially take it to the next level,” said wide receiver Adam Thielen, one of three players still on the roster to suit up for the pre-Zimmer Vikings.

The Wilfs have overseen the firing of four head coaches in 17 seasons owning the club, but Zimmer finished with the third-longest tenure in Vikings history behind Bud Grant and Dennis Green. Spielman and Zimmer were both given contract extensions in 2020.

Since Spielman was hired as vice president of player personnel in 2006, the only other NFC teams that haven’t made it to a Super Bowl are Dallas, Detroit and Washington. Twelve different teams have won the conference in those 16 years, the last 10 of which Spielman had full authority over the roster as the general manager.

“It is not common in the NFL to be in a position for this long, which goes to show how this ownership group believes in stability and supports their leaders,” Spielman said in a statement distributed by the Vikings.

Spielman was responsible for firing Leslie Frazier after the 2013 season and replacing him with Zimmer, who made his name as a clever and demanding defensive coordinator for Dallas and Cincinnati before finally getting his chance to run a team in Minnesota.

The 2017 team was the apex for the Spielman-Zimmer regime, when quarterback Case Keenum produced a career season and the defense led the league in fewest yards and points allowed.

The first crack in the foundation became clear in the NFC championship game, a 38-7 loss at Philadelphia one week after the “Minneapolis Miracle.” After Keenum’s 61-yard touchdown pass to Stefon Diggs as time expired beat New Orleans in the divisional round, the Eagles were the ones who made it to the Super Bowl in Minnesota’s stadium.

Zimmer refused to cede the defensive play calling and, as Rodgers and other opponents will attest, remained one of the game’s best strategists. His straightforward and hard-nosed approach won the respect of most of his best players on defense, but his style cut both ways.

Zimmer was never sold on Keenum and never meshed with current quarterback Kirk Cousins. He publicly second-guessed the offense several times, including just last week when he said after the Vikings were eliminated by a loss to the Packers that offensive coordinator Klint Kubiak should have called more running plays. Kubiak was the sixth offensive coordinator in the last six seasons.

After Blair Walsh missed a 27-yard field goal in the 2015 playoffs that would have given the Vikings a victory over Seattle, Zimmer became especially hard on kickers, too.

In 2018, the Vikings drafted kicker Daniel Carlson in the fifth round. In his second NFL game, he missed all three field goals at Green Bay, including two in overtime in a 29-29 tie. The Vikings impulsively released him the next day. When asked for an explanation, Zimmer said, “Did you see the game?”

Carlson missed just three field goals for Las Vegas this season. He sent the Raiders to the playoffs on Sunday by going 5 for 5 with the 47-yard overtime winner.

“I love coach Zim,” linebacker Anthony Barr said. “I know he’s catching a lot of heat, but players play the game, too. I think you can point the finger at us as much as you can point it at him. Somebody’s got to be the fall guy, I guess.”

NEXT STEPS

Both in-house searches will begin immediately, but the general manager will be chosen first and have input into the head coach hire. Las Vegas, Jacksonville, Denver, Chicago and Miami also have vacancies for a head coach. The Bears and New York Giants need a new general manager, too.

The new regime must first figure out the quarterback situation, with Cousins coming off another productive season but just 33-29-1 with the Vikings. He carries a $45 million salary cap hit for 2022, the final year of his deal.

DAVE GETTLEMAN OUT AS GIANTS GM, SAYS HE IS RETIRING

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) Dave Gettleman is out as the general manager of the New York Giants after a fourth straight double-digit losing season.

The Giants announced the 70-year-old Gettleman retired Monday, a day after New York (4-13) dropped its season finale 22-7 to Washington. It was the sixth straight loss and it ended a dismal, injury-plagued second season under coach Joe Judge.

Gettleman probably would have been fired had he not stepped down.

“It was a privilege to serve as the general manager of the New York Giants the last four years and to have spent so many years of my career with this franchise,” Gettleman said. “We obviously have not had the on-the-field success I expected, and that is disappointing. However, I have many fond memories here, including two Super Bowl victories, and I wish the team and organization only the best moving forward. There are many good people here who pour their souls into this organization.”

Judge’s future with the Giants also is in question after the late swoon marked by inept offensive performances. He plans to talk to team co-owners John Mara and Steve Tisch this week about returning for a third season.

Defensive lineman Leonard Williams, quarterback Daniel Jones and cornerback Logan Ryan said Judge talked to the team Monday about preparing for next season, which some took as an indication he was coming back. The team has not confirmed he will be back.

The Giants went 19-46 during Gettleman’s tenure and were rarely in playoff contention in that period.

“It is an understatement to say John and I are disappointed by the lack of success we have had on the field,” Tisch said. “We are united in our commitment to find a general manager who will provide the direction necessary for us to achieve the on-field performance and results we all expect.”

This past season was particularly hard to watch. The Giants came into the year with higher expectations coming off a 6-10 campaign that saw them close the season with a 5-3 run to finish second in the weak NFC East, a game behind Washington (7-9).

The anticipation grew in the offseason when New York signed playmaking wide receiver Kenny Golladay, drafted speedy receiver Kadarius Toney in the first round, and signed veteran tight end Kyle Rudolph to help with the blocking.

Nothing went right.

The offensive line lost left guard Shane Lemieux (knee) and center Nick Gates (broken leg) in the first two weeks of the season. Golladay didn’t catch a TD pass all season. Toney missed seven games with an assortment of injuries and Jones missed the final six games with a neck injury. Defensively, inside linebacker Blake Martinez and safety Jabrill Peppers were lost to ACL injuries.

Despite strong play by the defense, the result was four wins, the team’s lowest total since a 3-13 mark in 2017 led to the firing of coach Ben McAdoo and two-time Super Bowl- winning GM Jerry Reese early in December.

Those firings also came in response to the unpopular decision by those men to bench two-time Super Bowl MVP Eli Manning for a game against the Raiders, ending his streak of consecutive starts at 210.

Mara and Tisch wanted a veteran with a proven track record and they decided the then-66-year-old Gettleman fit. He had been a part of seven Super Bowl teams, including three winners. He was with Buffalo in 1990 and 1991; Denver in 1997; the Giants in 2000, 2007 and 2011; and the Panthers in 2015. The Broncos and the 2007 and 2011 Giants won the championship. Gettleman has been associated with 16 playoff teams in his NFL career.

He has been questioned about many of his moves. Hiring Pat Shurmur (9-23) as head coach in 2018 was a bust that lasted only two seasons. Drafting Jones with the sixth pick overall in 2019 is still a major question mark considering Jones’ inconsistency.

Gettleman, who dealt with leukemia in his first season, also knew what was wrong with the Giants. They had been plagued by bad offensive lines and low-scoring offense. In his initial news conference as GM, he said he wanted some “hog mollies” to pave the road and protect the quarterbacks – and he went after some.

Gettleman signed and overpaid for Patriots tackle Nate Solder as a free agent in 2018. He also drafted guard Will Hernandez in the second round that year. He traded popular and controversial receiver Odell Beckham Jr. and Olivier Vernon to Cleveland the following offseason for guard Kevin Zietler, Peppers and a first-round pick.

He did bulk up the offense in his tenure. He drafted running back Saquon Barkley with the second pick overall in 2018, and Barkley went on to be the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year. Jones came the following year. Left tackle Andrew Thomas was grabbed with the fourth pick overall in 2020, a draft that also landed Lemieux.

A midseason trade with the Jets for Williams in 2019 got the Giants their best defensive lineman.

Gettleman also revamped the scouting department, modernized the front office and was part of the selection committee that hired Judge, a late-30s special teams coordinator with the Patriots.

Judge sold everyone on building a team a team that pulls together and plays hard-nosed football. The Giants do pull together. They just don’t win, and it convinced Gettleman it was time to end his career.

HALL OF FAME RECEIVER DON MAYNARD DEAD AT AGE 86

(AP) — Don Maynard, a Hall of Fame receiver who made his biggest impact catching passes from Joe Namath in the wide-open AFL, has died. He was 86.

The Pro Football Hall of Fame confirmed Maynard’s death on Monday through his family.

Maynard was the main target for Namath with the New York Jets, though a leg injury made him less effective in the team’s stunning upset of the NFL champion Baltimore Colts in the 1969 Super Bowl. That game established the credibility of the newer league, but Maynard had proven himself long before that.

After an unproductive one-year stint with the New York Giants in 1958, the slim, deceptively fast Texan headed to Hamilton of the CFL for 1959. Then the AFL was established, and he was the first player to sign with the New York Titans, who soon would become the Jets.

Even though the Titans/Jets went through a series of mediocre quarterbacks in their early years, Maynard made his mark, including two 1,000-yard receiving seasons. And when Namath showed up in 1965 with a record contract and huge headlines, one of the league’s top passing combinations was born.

Namath’s best skill was throwing the deep ball, matching Maynard’s main talent. As Broadway Joe’s primary target, Maynard had three seasons with at least 1,200 yards receiving in a four-year span. He caught 14 touchdown passes in Namath’s rookie season, and twice more had 10 TDs in a season.

When he retired in 1973 after one season with the St. Louis Cardinals, he was pro football’s career receiving leader with 633 catches for 11,834 yards and 88 touchdowns. In 1987, he was elected to the Hall of Fame.

“Our Pro Football Hall of Fame family mourns the passing of Don Maynard,” said Jim Porter, president of the hall. “He was a resilient man on and off the field – and someone that his teammates could always count on.”

Maynard sometimes humbly assessed his career, and other times pointed out how much his achievements meant to him.

“I don’t really look at it like I’m the greatest receiver,” he once said. “After you play a while anybody can break certain records. Longevity is the key. The record I’m proudest of is being the first guy to get 10,000 yards in receptions. Others may do it but I’m the first, and only one guy can be the first.”

Unlike Namath, Maynard, who never worn a chinstrap because it felt uncomfortable, wasn’t made for the spotlight. He preferred ranch life back home in Texas to the bright lights of Manhattan. But his game, based on speed – he claimed he was never caught from behind once he made a catch – and excellent hands made him stand out.

Not as much as Namath, of course, but Maynard made four AFL Pro Bowls and the AFL’s only All-Decade squad. Maynard’s defining performance was against Oakland in the 1968 AFL championship game at a frigid Shea Stadium. He drew double coverage from the Raiders’ superb secondary, yet caught six passes for 118 yards and two scores. His 6-yarder in the fourth quarter provided the winning points, sending the Jets to their only Super Bowl.

“Don was unstoppable that day,” Namath recalled. “On the long pass (52 yards), he made an over-the-shoulder grab after the wind got the ball. It was the biggest play of the game.”

Maynard spent much of the Super Bowl win that was guaranteed by Namath as a decoy because of a sore leg, and didn’t catch a pass. Early in the game, though, he ran a deep route and got open; the pass barely missed his hands. The Colts respected his speed the rest of the way, often with double teams on the hobbled Maynard while New York’s other wideout, George Sauer, had a big game.

“I knew right away in the Super Bowl that I wasn’t going to catch any balls,” he once told Football Digest. “All I had to do was run, and stride, and clear out, and have a good day in that respect.

“I had a sore hamstring, but I stayed out the last game of the season against Miami. I lost the yardage receiving title by 15 yards to Lance Alworth. But I tell people, `I traded 15 yards for the yardage title for $15,000 in the Super Bowl.'”

BIG TEN ANNOUNCES WEEKLY MEN’S BASKETBALL AWARDS

Co-Player of the Week
Kofi Cockburn, Illinois
C – Jr. – 7-0 – Kingston, Jamaica – Oak Hill Academy (Va.)

  • Averaged 26.0 points, 14.0 rebounds, 2.0 blocks, 1.0 assist, and 1.0 steal per game in Illinois’ two wins last week, recording a double-double in each
  • Scored 29 points and added 10 rebounds, four blocks, two assists, and two steals in just 24 minutes in a 76-53 road win over Minnesota
  • Tallied 23 points and 18 rebounds in 28 minutes of play in a 76-64 home win over Maryland
  • Recorded a double-double in the second half alone against Maryland, with 16 points and 15 rebounds
  • Earns his third Player of the Week accolade of his career
  • Last Illinois Player of the Week: Kofi Cockburn (Dec. 27, 2021)


Co-Player of the Week
Johnny Davis, Wisconsin
G – So. – 6-5 – La Crosse, Wis. – La Crosse Central

  • Averaged 27.3 points, 10.0 rebounds, 3.0 assists, 1.0 steal, and 1.0 block per game in Wisconsin’s three wins last week
  • Scored 37 points and added 14 rebounds, three assists, two blocks, and two steals in a road win at No. 3 Purdue
  • Became the first player to lead his team in points, rebounds, assists, blocks, and steals in a road win over an AP top-five team since Wake Forest’s Tim Duncan in a 1997 win at No. 5 Maryland
  • Recorded 26 points, nine rebounds, and five assists in an 87-78 win over Iowa at home
  • Scored 19 points with seven rebounds, an assist, a block, and a steal in a 70-69 road win over Maryland
  • Earns his second Player of the Week accolade of his career
  • Last Wisconsin Player of the Week: Brad Davison (Dec. 6, 2021)


Co-Freshman of the Week
Max Christie, Michigan State
G – 6-6 – Arlington Heights, Ill. – Rolling Meadows

  • Scored 21 points to go along with four rebounds, an assist, and a steal in an 79-67 home win over Nebraska
  • Finished 7-of-9 from the field, including 3-of-4 from long range
  • Earns his fourth career Freshman of the Week honor
  • Last Michigan State Freshman of the Week: Max Christie (Dec. 27, 2021)

 
Co-Freshman of the Week
Malaki Branham, Ohio State
G – 6-5 – Columbus, Ohio – St. Vincent-St. Mary’s

  • Averaged 18.5 points, 4.5 rebounds, 4.0 assists, 1.5 steals, and 0.5 blocks in Ohio State’s two games last week
  • Recorded 24 points, five assists, four rebounds, three steals, and a block in a 95-87 home win over Northwestern
  • Earns his second career Freshman of the Week honor
  • Last Ohio State Freshman of the Week: Malaki Branham (Jan. 3, 2021)

IOWA AND NEBRASKA EARN BIG TEN WEEKLY WOMEN’S BASKETBALL AWARDS

Player of the Week
Caitlin Clark, Iowa
So. – G – West Des Moines, Iowa – Dowling Catholic – Major: Business
• Averaged 30.5 points, 5.5 rebounds and 8.5 assists per game and converted 21-of-22 free throws (.955) as the nationally-ranked Hawkeyes split matchups with Northwestern and Nebraska last week
• Nearly posted a triple-double in Sunday’s nationally-televised win at Nebraska, finishing with 31 points, eight rebounds and 12 assists, good for her sixth double-double this season
• Registered 30 points and five assists in a Jan. 6 game against Northwestern, including a 13-for-13 effort at the foul line, tying a Big Ten record for free throw percentage in a conference game
• Earns her eighth career Big Ten Player of the Week award and third this season
• Last Iowa Player of the Week: Caitlin Clark (Jan. 3, 2022)
 
Big Ten Women’s Basketball Weekly Honor Roll
Ashley Owusu, Jr., G, MD: Tallied 17.5 points, 5.0 rebounds and 6.5 assists per game in pacing the top-10 Terrapins to wins over Penn State and Minnesota last week
Taylor Mikesell, Sr., G, OSU: Recorded 22.5 points, 4.0 rebounds and 4.0 assists per game in the Buckeyes’ two Big Ten wins last week. Including a career-high 32 points and eight treys in a Jan. 6 win over Illinois
Brooke Moore, Sr., G, PUR: Came off the bench to score a career-high 22 points on 8-of-12 shooting in Sunday’s win at Michigan State (her second 20-point outing in a reserve role this year, tied for second nationally)
 
Freshman of the Week
Alexis Markowski, Nebraska
F – Lincoln, Neb. – Pius X – Major: Undeclared
• Posted 17.0 points and 7.5 rebounds per game with a .684 field-goal percentage last week in helping the Huskers split a pair of Top 25 conference contests with Michigan and Iowa
• Made her first career start Jan. 4 against No. 8/7 Michigan and dropped in a career-high 20 points and seven rebounds in Nebraska’s first top-10 win since 2014
• Added 14 points and eight rebounds in Sunday’s nationally-televised matchup against No. 22/21 Iowa
• Collects her third Big Ten Freshman of the Week award
• Last Nebraska Freshman of the Week: Alexis Markowski (Dec. 20, 2021)

Ohio’s Sears Claims Player of the Week Honors

MAC Men’s Basketball Player of the Week
Mark Sears, Ohio, Guard      
Sophomore, Muscle Shoals, Ala. / Hargrave Military Academy     
Sophomore guard Mark Sears was once again sensational last week, helping Ohio go 2-0 on the week to improve to 12-2 overall and 3-0 in conference play – the Bobcats’ best start since 2011-12. Overall, Sears averaged 26.0 points, going 17-of-29 (.586) from the field, 3-of-7 (.429) from three and was 15-of-16 (.938) from the line. He averaged 7.0 rebounds and 4.0 assists per game. 
 
On Jan. 4 at Akron, Sears scored 24 points, going 8-of-14 from the field, 2-of-4 from three and was a perfect 6-of-6 from the line. He also grabbed a team-high eight rebounds and dished out five assists in 38 minutes. Sears was pivotal in helping the Bobcats hold off a Zips’ comeback late in the second half. With Ohio only leading by two with 24 seconds left, Sears sank a jumper, putting Ohio up 67-63 and sealing the game, which the Bobcats would go on to win, 69-63.
 
Then on Jan. 7, Sears against was masterful. Going head-to-head with Kent State guard Sincere Carry, Sears scored 28 points, going 9-of-15 from the field, 1-of-3 from three and was 9-of-10 from the line. He also grabbed six rebounds, dished out three assists and had one steal in the 80-72 victory inside the Convo. The win extended Ohio’s win streak to seven games.
 
Other Nominees
Tyler Cochran, Ball State, Guard
Sophomore, Bolingbrook, Ill. (Bolingbrook)
Tyler Cochran led the Cardinals with 19.0 points per game over the week and was second on the team during the week with 5.5 rebounds per game. Cochran recorded a team-high 23 points and nine rebounds against Kent State. He added an assist and a steal. In the game at Eastern Michigan, he finished with 15 points, two rebounds, a steal and an assist. He recorded a field-goal percentage of .600, shot .333 percent from 3-point range, and was a perfect 6-for-6 from the free-throw line.
 
Daeqwon Plowden, Bowling Green, Forward         
Senior, Philadelphia, Pa. (Mastery Charter North) 
Bowling Green senior forward Daeqwon Plowden began the week against Buffalo, narrowly missing a double-double. Plowden posted 14 points and a team-high nine rebounds against the Bulls. Plowden continued that success against Miami, leading the Falcons to an overtime victory. Plowden tallied a career-high 27 points against the RedHawks in addition to 10 rebounds for his third double-double of the season. Of the 27 points, Plowden scored 21 after halftime. Plowden also logged a pair of steals and a block in each contest as well.
 
David Skogman, Buffalo, Forward   
Sophomore, Waukesha, WI (Waukesha West)       
Sophomore David Skogman had career highs of 20 points and 15 rebounds as the Bulls defeated Bowling Green on Wednesday.  More impressive is that Skogman did not miss a shot as he was perfect from the floor (6-6), the three-point line (2-2) and the free throw line (6-6).  Skogman is only the second player in the nation this year to score at least 20 points without missing a shot from the floor.  Since 2010, Skogman is the only player in the NCAA has been perfect from the field, the three point line, and the free throw line, while recording 20 points and at least 15 boards
 
Noah Farrakhan, Eastern Michigan, Guard  
Freshman, Newark, N.J.-The Patrick School
Freshman transfer guard Noah Farrakhan (Newark, N.J.-The Patrick School (East Carolina)) was outstanding for Eastern Michigan in a pair of games against Western Michigan and Ball State.  Farrakhan was the catalyst to Eastern Michigan’s impressive offensive display in its MAC-opening road win over in-state rival Western Michigan. The first-year Eagle dropped 25 points, his second most of the season, including 20 in the first half, to lead the team in their 85-point display over the Broncos. Farrakhan’s 20 first-half points were a career-best and the most for any Eastern player since Yeikson Montero did it Dec. 27, 2020 against Olivet. Additionally, EMU’s 85 total points, which it used to best Western by six, are the most for Eastern Michigan in any road game this season. Farrakhan followed his Western Michigan performance with another impressive outing against Ball State, Jan. 8. He put up 13 points  and notched a season-best four steals against the Cardinals to record 10th double-digit outing of the season.
 
Sincere Carry, Kent State, Guard      
Redshirt Junior, Solon, Ohio 
Carry recorded his fourth and fifth 20+ point games of the season last week, first in a thrilling victory over Ball State. Against the Cardinals, Carry scored a season-high 26 points while adding seven rebounds, seven assists and three steals. He also held Ball State’s Luke Bumbalough, one of the MAC’s leading scorers, to just three points on 1-for-9 shooting. Carry followed that up with another 26-point performance on Friday night against Ohio. He nearly led the Flashes to a wild come-from-behind victory over the Bobcats but ultimately came up just short. Carry led the team with eight rebounds and recorded all six of his assists during the second half comeback attempt. The Solon, Ohio native played all 40 minutes in both contests and shot nearly 50 percent from the field.
 
Dae Dae Grant,  Miami, Guard         
Junior, Lorain, Ohio (Lorain)
Dae Dae Grant amassed a season-high and team-leading 26 points at Bowling Green in the RedHawks’ lone game of the week. Grant hit a career-high-tying 10 field goals, including six three-pointers. His six treys helped Miami to a 15-triple effort on the day, tying for fifth-most in a single game in program history. Grant hit 45.5 percent of his field goals and 46.1 percent of his long-range shots. He added five rebounds, five assists and a steal to his line in a career-high 41:55 minutes of action in the overtime game. It was Grant’s third-straight game with five or more assists and the sixth-straight of four or more assists.
 
RayJ Dennis, Toledo, Guard  
Junior, Plainfield, Ill. (Oswego)        
Junior RayJ Dennis averaged 13.0 points, 5.5 rebounds and 2.5 assists per game and shot an impressive 68.8 percent from the field (11-of-16) and 75.0 percent (3-of-4) from three-point range. Dennis tallied 10 points, six rebounds and two assists in an 82-54 win at Central Michigan on Tuesday before tying for the team scoring lead with 16 points and grabbing five rebounds and dishing out three assists vs. Northern Illinois on Saturday.
 
Lamar Norman Jr., Western Michigan, Guard         
Junior, Grand Rapids, Mich. (Godwin Heights)        
Norman scored a career-high 34 points on 14-of-25 shooting (all career highs) against Eastern Michigan in WMU’s lone game of the week … Of his 34 points, 20 came in the first half, making him the first Bronco to score 20 in a half since Michael Flowers in the first round of the 2020 MAC Tournament at Toledo. The junior guard also equaled his career-best with four assists and had three steals for the Broncos.

BAYLOR REMAINS UNANIMOUS NO. 1 IN AP TOP 25; USC HITS NO. 5

(AP) — Reigning national champion Baylor isn’t showing any sign of loosening its grip on No. 1.

The Bears remained the unanimous No. 1 in The Associated Press men’s college basketball poll for the fourth time in five weeks. That came after Baylor (15-0) beat Oklahoma and TCU last week to push its winning streak to 21 games dating to last year’s title run in the Indianapolis bubble.

That streak is the third longest in the Big 12’s 26-year history, trailing Baylor’s 23-game run in 2019-20 and Kansas’ 22-game stretch in 1996-97. The Bears enter this week as the only team in the top 10 of KenPom’s adjusted efficiency rankings for both offense (120.6 points per 100 possessions) and defense (89.6).

They trailed by nine early in the second half of Saturday’s win at TCU, but ended up winning by double figures for the 12th time this year.

“I think when you’re a No. 1 team, everybody is going to look at you in situations like this,” point guard James Akinjo said. “They want to see how you respond.”

So far, it’s been good enough to stay in place at the top.

THE TOP TIER

No. 2 Gonzaga and No. 3 UCLA each climbed two spots after losses by Duke and Purdue, while Auburn and Southern California were new additions to the top five.

For the Tigers, they jumped five spots after beating South Carolina and Florida to push their winning streak to 11 games. Then there were the Trojans, who climbed two spots to their highest ranking since last reaching No. 5 in December 1974 after beating California on Thursday.

USC (13-0) joins Baylor as the last two unbeaten teams in Division I men’s basketball.

Arizona, Purdue, Duke, Kansas and Michigan State rounded out a reshuffled group of the same top-10 teams from last week.

RISING

No. 13 Wisconsin had the biggest jump in this week’s poll, leaping 10 spots after upsetting the then-No. 3 Boilermakers along with beating Iowa and Maryland in Big Ten play. The Purdue and Maryland wins were on the road.

“For me, knock on wood, this group has been terrific,” Badgers coach Greg Gard said after the Iowa win. “I can’t even get mad at them. They just give me everything they’ve got dang near every day. They haven’t had a bad day – maybe a snippet of a bad day, but they quickly corrected it.”

No. 12 LSU was the other big riser, climbing nine spots after wins against ranked Kentucky and Tennessee teams.

In all, 12 teams climbed in Monday’s poll, including No. 19 Texas Tech (six spots), No. 14 Villanova (five) and No. 17 Xavier (five).

SLIDING

No. 24 Alabama had the biggest fall, sliding nine spots after losing to a Missouri team that was 6-7 entering the game. No. 21 Texas and No. 23 Providence each fell seven spots as the week’s other big tumblers.

In all, 10 teams fell in the poll, including the Blue Devils falling six spots after losing at home to Miami on Saturday night in their second game back from a COVID-19 outbreak.

STATUS QUO

Baylor and Michigan State were the week’s only teams to hold their position from last week.

WELCOME

Illinois re-entered the poll at No. 25 after opening the year at No. 11 but falling out before the end of November. That came after the AP Top 25 featured no new teams for each of the past two weeks.

FAREWELL (FOR NOW)

Colorado State (No. 20) fell out of the poll to make room for Illinois after its 30-point loss at San Diego State on Saturday, marking its first loss this season.

CONFERENCE WATCH

The Big 12, Big Ten and Southeastern conferences each had five ranked teams, followed by the Big East with four and the Pac-12 with three – all coming in the top six.

The Atlantic Coast, American Athletic and West Coast conferences each had one ranked team.

JUDGE SAYS DJOKOVIC CAN STAY IN AUSTRALIA BUT SAGA NOT OVER

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) Novak Djokovic returned to the tennis court Monday for training, having won a legal battle to stay in Australia to play in the Australian Open after his exemption from strict coronavirus vaccine rules was questioned. But the government is still threatening to cancel his visa and deport him.

The unvaccinated tennis star was released after being confined to an immigration hotel for four nights – a drama that has gripped many in Australia and beyond.

Federal Circuit Court Judge Anthony Kelly reinstated Djokovic’s visa, which was pulled after his arrival last week because officials said he didn’t qualify for an exemption to a rule that all non-citizens be fully vaccinated. Djokovic’s lawyers say that since he recently recovered from COVID-19, he didn’t need to be inoculated.

The judge ruled the No. 1 player had not been given enough time to speak to his lawyers before the decision was made and ordered the government to release him from the Melbourne quarantine hotel where he was held.

But government lawyer Christopher Tran told the judge that the immigration minister “will consider whether to exercise a personal power of cancellation.”

That would mean that the nine-time Australian Open winner and defending champion could again face deportation and could miss the tournament, which starts on Jan. 17. It could also bar him from the country for three years.

Late Monday night, Djokovic tweeted out a photo that showed him and his team standing on one of the main show courts of the tournament. He was already back to training, his brother told reporters in Serbia.

“I’m pleased and grateful that the Judge overturned my visa cancellation. Despite all that has happened, I want to stay and try to compete (at)AustralianOpen,” Djokovic said in the post.

The back and forth has caused a furor in Australia, where many initially decried the news that Djokovic, who has been a vocal skeptic of vaccines, had received an exemption to strict rules to compete in Melbourne. Many felt the star, who court documents say is not inoculated, was being given special treatment since Australians who aren’t vaccinated face tough travel and quarantine restrictions.

But when border police then blocked the 34-year-old on arrival, others cried foul, saying he was being scapegoated by an Australian government facing criticism for its recent handling of the pandemic.

The tennis star’s brother, Djordje Djokovic, told television network Prva in Belgrade, Serbia: “This is definitely politics, all this was politics.”

Spanish tennis star Rafael Nadal called the controversy “a circus” and said he supported the decision allowing his rival to play in Melbourne.

“Beyond me agreeing or not with Djokovic on certain things, there’s no question that justice has spoken and has said that he has the right to take part in the Australian Open,” Nadal said Monday during an interview with Spain’s Onda Cero radio.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s conservative government is seeking re-election for a fourth term in polls due by May.

While his government was widely praised for containing the nation’s COVID-19 death toll at the start of the pandemic, he has recently loosened some rules, just as omicron cases have been rapidly surging. He has been criticized for that strategy as well as for shortages of rapid antigen tests and for refusing to make the tests available to all for free.

At Monday’s court hearing, Djokovic’s lawyers argued their client did not need proof of vaccination because he had evidence that he had been infected with the coronavirus last month.

Australian medical authorities have ruled that people who have been infected with COVID-19 within six months can receive a temporary exemption to the vaccination rule.

Judge Kelly noted that Djokovic had provided officials at Melbourne’s airport with a medical exemption given him by Tennis Australia and two medical panels.

“The point I’m somewhat agitated about is what more could this man have done?” Kelly asked Djokovic’s lawyer, Nick Wood.

Wood agreed that his client could not have done more, noting that transcripts of Djokovic’s interview with Border Force officials and his own affidavit revealed that he repeatedly told officers he had done everything he thought was required of him.

Djokovic’s lawyers described the cancellation as “seriously illogical.”

But lawyers for Home Affairs Minister Andrews said in their submission that the vaccination exemption could only be granted for travelers who had recovered from a serious bout of COVID-19.

“There is no suggestion that the applicant (Djokovic) had `acute major medical illness’ in December” when he tested positive, the written submission said.

But in the end, the government lawyers conceded that the decision to proceed with interviewing Djokovic in the early hours of Thursday and cancel his visa before he could contact Tennis Australia or his lawyers was unreasonable.

Djokovic was told at 5:20 a.m. on Thursday that he had until 8:30 a.m. to respond to a notice of intention to cancel his visa. His comments were sought instead at 6:14 a.m.

The decision to cancel his visa was made just over an hour later.

Minister Andrews did not immediately responded to a request for comment. But a spokesperson for Alex Hawke, minister for immigration, citizenship, migrant services and multicultural affairs, acknowledged the court’s decision, adding the minister’s personal discretion remains in play.

“The minister is currently considering the matter and the process remains ongoing,” the spokesman said.

Still, at a news conference in Belgrade, Serbia, Djokovic’s family declared victory.

“This is his greatest victory, greater than all the Grand Slams that he has won,” his mother, Dijana Djokovic, said.

The virtual hearing crashed several times because of an overwhelming number of people from around the world trying to watch the proceedings.

At one point, an expired court link was apparently hacked and broadcast pornography, The New Daily News website reported.

Djokovic has 20 Grand Slam singles titles, a men’s record he shares with Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.

TV TUESDAY

COLLEGE BASKETBALLTIME ETTV
HOFSTRA AT TOWSON5:00PMCBSSN
SOUTH CAROLINA AT TENNESSEE6:30PMSECN
RUTGERS AT PENN STATE6:30PMBTN
TEXAS TECH AT BAYLOR7:00PMESPN/2
KENTUCKY AT VANDERBILT7:00PMESPN/2
DEPAUL AT MARQUETTE7:00PMFS1
PITT AT SYRACUSE7:00PMESPNU
SAINT LOUIS AT DAYTON7:00PMCBSSN
GEORGE WASHINGTON AT VCU7:00PMESPN+
GEORGE MASON AT RICHMOND7:00PMESPN+
UMASS AT DAVIDSON7:00PMESPN+
TOLEDO AT MIAMI (OH)7:00PMESPN+
STETSON AT JACKSONVILLE7:00PMESPN+
NORTH FLORIDA AT LIBERTY7:00PMESPN+
MIAMI (FL) AT FLORIDA STATE8:00PMACCN
IOWA STATE AT KANSAS8:00PMESPN+
OLE MISS AT TEXAS A&M8:30PMSECN
ILLINOIS AT NEBRASKA8:30PMBTN
PURDUE AT MICHIGAN9:00PMESPN
ESPN2
OKLAHOMA STATE AT WEST VIRGINIA9:00PMESPN
ESPN2
ESPNU
AUBURN AT ALABAMA9:00PMESPN
ESPN2
ESPNU
VALPARAISO AT LOYOLA (CHICAGO)9:00PMCBSSN
PROVIDENCE AT CREIGHTON9:00PMFS1
NEW MEXICO AT UNLV11:00PMCBSSN
NBATIME ETTV
OKLAHOMA CITY AT WASHINGTON7:00PMBALLY SPORTS
NBCS-WSH
PHOENIX AT TORONTO7:30PMSPORTSNET
BALLY SPORTS
DETROIT AT CHICAGO8:00PMBALLY SPORTS
NBCS-CHI
GOLDEN STATE AT MEMPHIS8:00PMBALLY SPORTS
NBCS-BAY
MINNESOTA AT NEW ORLEANS8:00PMBALLY SPORTS
DENVER AT LA CLIPPERS10:30PMNBATV
BALLY SPORTS
ALT
NHLTIME ETTV
TAMPA BAY AT BUFFALO7:00PMMSG-BUF
BALLY SPORTS
VANCOUVER AT FLORIDA7:00PMSPORTSNET
BALLY SPORTS
CAROLINA AT PHILADELPHIA7:00PMNBCS-PHI
BALLY SPORTS
CHICAGO AT COLUMBUS7:00PMNBCS-CHI
BALLY SPORTS
COLORADO AT NASHVILLE8:00PMALT2
BALLY SPORTS
TORONTO AT VEGAS10:00PMSPORTSNET
ATTSN-RM
PITTSBURGH AT ANAHEIM10:00PMBALLY SPORTS
ATTSN-PIT
DETROIT AT SAN JOSE10:30PMESPN+
HULU

NBA STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
 WLPCTCONF GBHOMEROADDIVCONFLAST 10STREAK
CHICAGO2611.70314-412-74-217-79-11 L
BROOKLYN2514.6412.011-1014-46-118-84-61 L
MIAMI2515.6252.512-413-116-116-77-32 W
MILWAUKEE2617.6053.013-713-106-218-136-42 L
PHILADELPHIA2316.5904.08-815-83-614-108-27 W
CLEVELAND2318.5615.011-912-94-114-94-61 W
TORONTO2017.5416.012-108-75-512-117-36 W
CHARLOTTE2219.5376.012-510-145-314-96-43 W
WASHINGTON2020.5007.510-710-135-514-135-51 W
10 BOSTON2021.4888.013-87-135-514-115-52 W
11 NEW YORK2021.4888.010-1110-104-613-176-41 W
12 ATLANTA1722.43610.08-99-134-310-123-72 L
13 INDIANA1526.36613.012-103-162-78-212-81 L
14 DETROIT930.23118.06-133-172-66-184-62 W
15 ORLANDO734.17121.02-155-191-94-261-99 L
 
WESTERN CONFERENCE
 WLPCTCONF GBHOMEROADDIVCONFLAST 10STREAK
GOLDEN STATE309.76918-312-67-116-66-41 W
PHOENIX309.76917-513-45-420-76-41 L
UTAH2813.6833.014-714-69-018-46-43 L
MEMPHIS2814.6673.514-814-64-221-99-19 W
DALLAS2218.5508.511-811-108-218-107-36 W
DENVER2018.5269.59-711-113-513-116-42 W
LA LAKERS2120.51210.014-117-92-512-145-51 L
MINNESOTA2020.50010.511-109-104-415-135-54 W
LA CLIPPERS2021.48811.013-127-93-512-174-61 W
10 PORTLAND1624.40014.514-112-131-48-184-62 W
11 SAN ANTONIO1525.37515.57-108-151-48-153-73 L
12 SACRAMENTO1627.37216.010-146-134-611-193-75 L
13 NEW ORLEANS1426.35016.58-116-152-49-165-51 L
14 OKLAHOMA CITY1326.33317.08-135-131-510-193-74 L
15 HOUSTON1131.26220.57-134-181-44-171-93 L
 

EIGHT TEAMS IN EACH CONFERENCE QUALIFY FOR THE PLAYOFFS. 

X – CLINCHED PLAYOFF SPOT,  Y – CLINCHED DIVISION,  Z – CLINCHED CONFERENCE

NHL STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
 GPWLOTLPTSROWGFGAHOMEROADL10
FLORIDA PANTHERS352375512213710618-3-05-4-56-3-1
CAROLINA HURRICANES33247250241157311-3-113-4-18-1-1
TAMPA BAY LIGHTNING372395512112210912-4-311-5-26-3-1
NEW YORK RANGERS372310450211079410-3-213-7-25-4-1
WASHINGTON CAPITALS372089491812510410-4-510-4-44-3-3
TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS33228347221128314-4-18-4-26-2-2
PITTSBURGH PENGUINS34209545191128910-5-210-4-39-1-0
BOSTON BRUINS3219112401899849-6-110-5-17-3-0
DETROIT RED WINGS361616436159912212-5-24-11-23-6-1
10 COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS3316161331310611811-5-15-11-03-6-1
11 PHILADELPHIA FLYERS35131573313901196-7-37-8-44-3-3
12 NEW JERSEY DEVILS361417533131051269-7-35-10-24-6-0
13 NEW YORK ISLANDERS2810126261064804-5-36-7-35-2-3
14 BUFFALO SABRES3410186268911196-10-24-8-42-5-3
15 OTTAWA SENATORS299182208791075-9-04-9-25-4-1
16 MONTREAL CANADIENS347234186731235-10-12-13-31-7-2
 
WESTERN CONFERENCE
 GPWLOTLPTSROWGFGAHOMEROADL10
NASHVILLE PREDATORS362311248221129510-5-013-6-28-1-1
VEGAS GOLDEN KNIGHTS3823141472013511312-9-111-5-06-3-1
ST. LOUIS BLUES362110547191269814-3-27-7-37-2-1
COLORADO AVALANCHE322282462113910414-2-18-6-19-1-0
ANAHEIM DUCKS3819127451611610612-5-47-7-34-4-2
LOS ANGELES KINGS361813541161009412-8-26-5-36-3-1
MINNESOTA WILD3321102441712210211-3-110-7-15-4-1
CALGARY FLAMES33171064015104834-3-413-7-23-6-1
SAN JOSE SHARKS361916139181021129-7-110-9-05-5-0
10 EDMONTON OILERS3418142381611311110-6-08-8-22-6-2
11 WINNIPEG JETS33161253715999910-6-16-6-45-4-1
12 DALLAS STARS32171323615929413-3-14-10-14-6-0
13 VANCOUVER CANUCKS3416153351389958-7-18-8-28-1-1
14 CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS3512185299831196-7-36-11-23-4-3
15 SEATTLE KRAKEN34102042410951266-11-24-9-21-7-2
16 ARIZONA COYOTES337233177721283-12-14-11-22-7-1
 

EIGHT TEAMS IN EACH CONFERENCE QUALIFY FOR THE DIVISIONAL PLAYOFF FORMAT.  THE TOP THREE TEAMS FROM EACH DIVISION MAKE UP THE FIRST SIX SPOTS.   THE TWO REMAINING TEAMS WITH THE HIGHEST POINTS, REGARDLESS OF DIVISION, QUALIFY FOR THE FINAL TWO WILD CARD SPOTS.  

X – CLINCHED PLAYOFF SPOT, Y – CLINCHED DIVISION, Z – CLINCHED CONFERENCE