Here is an early look at my confidential for Monday May 11th. Enjoy.
First, he almost got caught calling a timeout when he had none left…
… next, we learned that LeBron James defecated all over the play he drew up during the final timeout.
I imagine the huddle going like this…
“Ok, guys, LeBron is going to take the ball out and….” – Coach Blatt
“Give me that damn whiteboard you idiot. Here’s the play.” – LeBron James
Here is the actual video of what LeBron said during the postgame press conference, and more…
Coach Blatt: First you single-handily tried to lose the game, then, YOU SAID THE BEST BASKETBALL PLAYER ON EARTH SHOULD INBOUND THE BALL WITH THE GAME TIED AND 1 SECOND LEFT?
As the world waits to see how the NFL will react to the Wells Report, the lull between the report's publishing on Wednesday and the league's decision on disciplinary action has led to all kinds of speculation.
Will there be punishment levied against the Patriots and quarterback Tom Brady? (Brady's agent Don Yee has pointed out that there still remains a possibility that the NFL may decide not to hand out any discipline.) If the league does come down on the team, what form will the punishment take? Will it be a fine? A suspension? Will Patriots draft picks be lost?
Everyone, it seems, has a take. Loud ones.
When Gary Myers of the New York Daily News cited sources in the league's offices who told him that it was certain that Brady would be suspended, the league reacted as though that was just another opinion. Another take.
It didn't necessarily read that way, but the league insists.
In a note to Boston.com, spokesman Greg Aiello wrote, "It is Gary Myers’ prediction. The headline is misleading." Aiello added that "no decisions have been made."
Until a decision comes down, the guessing game will continue.
If Tom Brady is suspended for his role in Deflategate, the Patriots would surely want another veteran quarterback on the roster. At the moment, the only quarterbacks behind Brady on the depth chart are Jimmy Garoppolo and Garrett Gilbert, both of whom are 23-year-olds who have never started an NFL game.
Most teams have more than three quarterbacks on the roster during the offseason anyway, so it’s very unlikely that the Patriots would stick with only three quarterbacks if one of them, Brady, is going to be suspended. Mike Reiss of ESPN Boston floats the name of longtime Packers backup Matt Flynn as a possible free agent signing. Other veteran quarterbacks available include Michael Vick, Jason Campbell and Tarvaris Jackson.
Although the NFL says no decision has been made yet on suspending Brady, most observers think he’s going to get suspended. Which means when the NFL opens the season with the Steelers at New England on Thursday, September 10, it won’t be Ben Roethlisberger vs. Tom Brady. It may be Roethlisberger vs. Garoppolo, or Roethlisberger vs. Flynn, or Roethlisberger vs. Vick.
Former Notre Dame quarterback Everett Golson won’t be lining up under center for the Fighting Irish in 2015, and according to Fox Sports’ Bruce Feldman, he won’t be lining up on the other side of the field from them either. Feldman is reporting Sunday night that Notre Dame is not granting a release for Golson to play at any of the schools on the team’s 2015 schedule, along with “several” Big Ten teams.
What does that really mean? It means Golson won’t be transferring to Texas, which was on everyone’s list of potential destinations for the signal-caller. The Irish open with the Longhorns on September 5. He also can’t play at Virginia, Georgia Tech, UMass, Clemson, Navy, USC, Temple, Pittsburgh, Wake Forest, Boston College, Stanford, and a few unnamed Big Ten schools.
Golson hasn’t tipped his hand in the time since his transfer announcement, but it’s been reported that he has heavy interest from both South Carolina and Georgia. Many have also speculated that he could land at Florida, Florida State, LSU or even Alabama. While we aren’t much closer to knowing where he’ll end up, it’s clear that you can cross the Longhorns off the list.
Attention, Arkansas football players: if you’re thinking about playing some pick-up basketball, do not tweet about it. Your coach, Bret Bielema, will find the tweet, tell everyone you shouldn’t be playing hoops and probably leave you pretty embarrassed.
That’s what happened on Saturday afternoon, anyway.
Razorbacks’ junior tight end Jeremy Sprinkle tweeted the following:
Im tryna hoop this week
Don’t be tweeting that on Bielema’s watch.
Stay away from the hardwood, Arkansas football players.
Ohio State quarterback Cardale Jones isn’t necessarily afraid to rattle some cages. In what has been a continuing feud between Jones and Chicago Bulls big man Joakim Noah, the former decided to take on Noah as Chicago was hosting the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals.
I see @JoakimNoah ain't here to block shots, get dunked on chump.
Jones’ tweet was in response to Noah getting dunked on by LeBron James.
As we said, this was the continuation of a not-so-lighthearted exchange between the two athletes.
Jones and his Buckeyes took in Game 2 of the Bulls-Cavs series in Cleveland earlier this week. Apparently, Noah didn’t take too kind to Jones cheering on his home-state team in what was a blowout win for the Cavaliers. That led to an exchange of words between Jones and Noah through the press and social media.
Noah on bench watching Cardale Jones on the public address mic mouthed, "you ain't in the SEC"
@JoakimNoah watch yo mouth before I give you these hands chump.
As it is, Noah and the Bulls got the last laugh in Game 3. Derrick Rose banked in a last-second three pointerto give Chicago the win and a 2-1 series lead.
That didn’t stop Jones from throwing more shade Noah’s way after the game
I actually like the Bulls but I can't cheer for them against my home town team, I just HATE @JoakimNoahPERIOD!
Jameis Winston looked even better at rookie minicamp than the Buccaneers were expecting when they selected him with the first overall pick in the draft.
“I told my wife, Blair, ‘I gave him an A,'” Bucs G.M. Jason Licht told USA Today. “I thought it was a great day. He knew the offense already. He wasn’t overwhelmed. He was even a little ahead of the game. He was already trying to change protections. The coaches were like, ‘Wait up. Hold on.’ You’re right. But the other guys aren’t there yet.”‘
Bucs coach Lovie Smith liked that Winston arrived early at rookie minicamp so he could be there to introduce himself to his teammates individually as they arrived.
“That’s a leader,” Smith said. “That’s a trait you’re looking for in your quarterback, a guy who can bring the group together. That’s definitely him.”
The Bucs haven’t anointed Winston as the Week One starter just yet, but Licht noted that that’s the idea when you take a quarterback No. 1. In Tampa Bay, Winston looks like the franchise quarterback.
Terrelle Pryor’s NFL career isn’t over just yet.
Pryor, who didn’t play at all last season and was cut by the Chiefs last week, has signed with the Bengals.
The Bengals brought Pryor in on a tryout basis this weekend, and he apparently did enough to convince the team that he deserves a longer look. Andy Dalton is the unquestioned starter in Cincinnati, but Pryor will get a chance to compete with A.J. McCarron and Josh Johnson to be Dalton’s backup.
KONOSU, Japan — Julio Franco is getting the best of both worlds as a 56-year-old player-manager for the Ishikawa Million Stars of Japan’s semi-professional Baseball Challenge League.
"I don’t see myself out of baseball," Franco said in a recent interview with The Associated Press. "I can go fishing, go play golf or go to Starbucks but at the end of the day, I love baseball and this is what I want to do."
When he signed a contract with the Million Stars, Franco saw himself more as a manager than player but that hasn’t been the case so far. Due to an injury to a key player, Franco finds himself playing more than he expected.
Playing in 10 of his team’s 14 games this season, Franco has a .333 batting average with four RBIs and six runs scored.
"I wasn’t planning to play this much but one of my best hitters got hurt so I have to play first base or DH," Franco said. "I was thinking about just pinch-hitting and playing once a week but since he got hurt I’m playing a lot more than I expected."
Franco played parts of 23 major league seasons for eight teams from 1982-2007, with stints in Japan for the Chiba Lotte Marines and South Korea for the Samsung Lions during that time.
A three-time All-Star infielder and former American League batting champion, Franco was the oldest active player in the majors when he played his last game for the Atlanta Braves in 2007 at the age of 49, and is showing no signs of slowing down.
"I want to play until I’m 66," Franco said. "That’s the goal."
There have been twice as many game-winning buzzer-beaters in the 2015 NBA Playoffs (4) as there have been in the last 5 NCAA tournaments (2)
Career postseason game-winning buzzer-beater shots: Michael Jordan 3 LeBron James 3
Most Go-Ahead Makes In Final Second of 4th Quarter/OT Last 15 Postseasons LeBron James 4 (3 at buzzer) Manu Ginobili 3
Here is an early look at my confidential for Monday's show. Enjoy.
That’s nine and counting for the SEC.
The SEC had 54 players taken in the seven rounds of the NFL Draft, marking the ninth straight year the conference has had the most players selected in the annual draft.
The nation-leading 54 NFL Draft picks are the second most in SEC history, trailing only the 63 in 2013
Here’s the breakdown for all conferences:
The SEC might have had the most players picked from any collegiate conference for the ninth year in a row, but it wasn’t a banner day for all of the schools from that neck of the woods.
The University of Tennessee ranks among the most prolific producers of NFL talent, but none of the members of last year’s squad were able to get an NFL team to volunteer interest in a Volunteer. For the first time since 1963, no members of the Tennessee team were drafted into the NFL.
Tennessee was 7-6 under coach Butch Jones last season and had two players invited to the combine.
Although quarterbacks went 1-2 in this year’s NFL draft, from top to bottom NFL teams viewed this as one of the weakest years for quarterback prospects ever.
As a result, only seven quarterbacks were drafted — the fewest in any NFL draft since six quarterbacks were taken in 1955.
One of perhaps the 10 best quarterbacks eligible for the 2015 NFL Draft has a new home.
Of course, there were only seven quarterbacks drafted, and this one is changing positions, which says as much about the class as him in particular.
The Jaguars announced the addition of nine undrafted rookies, including cornerback Nick Marshall.
Marshall was a quarterback at Auburn, and his college coach thinks he could play the position at the next level. He might be right, given the supply/demand issues the league is having there.
But for now, he’s a corner, where he participated during the Senior Bowl.
And in doing so, they eliminated another potential distraction.
According to Peter King of Sports Illustrated, the contract contains a clause prohibiting Winston from playing professional baseball during the length of the deal.
While that should be an easy call, Winston created some concern in Bucs officials by expressing his desire to at least consider playing baseball at some point, saying “It has always been my dream, but I’m just playing football right now.”
That could easily be read as a lack of focus, and it was a concern to Bucs officials. They texted Winston and spoke to him after the comments became public, telling him that wasn’t OK with them if they were making him the top pick in the draft. Winston told them he understood, but was just speaking honestly and loved baseball.
But as with so many other things, the Buccaneers worked to eliminate distractions, so their No. 1 overall pick can do what he does best.
Shortly after the conclusion of the NFL draft Saturday, former Georgia Tech linebacker Quayshawn Nealy agreed to terms with the Seattle Seahawks as an undrafted rookie free agent, one of three former Jackets to reach terms. Nealy, a four-year starter and an All-ACC pick last season, will be a part of a 12-player group of undrafted players that includes one other linebacker.
Days goes with Cowboys: Former Georgia Tech B-back Synjyn Days has agreed to an undrafted rookie free agent deal with the Dallas Cowboys, Days’ father, Calvin, said late Saturday.
Johnson agrees with Lions: Former Georgia Tech safety Isaiah Johnson has agreed to an undrafted free-agent deal with the Detroit Lions, according to his agent Lance Courtney, joining a certain other former Yellow Jacket of note.
Zach Laskey also signed a deal with the Rams.
The most anticipated boxing fight in years was riddled with delays because of unprecedented pay-per-view demand, inexplicably catching the nation’s cable and satellite systems off guard.
Then came waves of angry tweets by consumers targeting several cable/satellite providers. They complained of issues with both ordering and watching. Some customers said they were told the fight wasn’t available when they tried to order. Others complained of picture problems. Some could not tune into the pay-per-view channel.
Customer service Twitter accounts for Dish Network and Cox Communications asked customers if they ordered standard definition or high definition feeds of the fight, an indication that the companies could be having problems with standard definition feed. A social media account for DirecTV referred users toward a troubleshooting website.
These pay-per-view customers spent up to $100 for the privilege of watching the “fight of the century,” which Mayweather won in a unanimous decision after 12 rounds.
It seems most cable/satellite providers had some issues, according to media reports, including Time Warner Cable, Comcast Xfinity, DirecTV, Dish, Cox, Charter, AT&T and Optimum. Customers also reported problems with Verizon, Cablevision, Bright House and RCN.
All of the companies blamed the problems mostly on the enormous volume of PPV orders, which begs the question: Didn’t they see this coming in the wake of weeks of massive hype behind the boxing showdown? Apparently not.
Facing a talented Los Angeles Clippers team in the first round, the Spurs had their chances of winning the series but in the end lost in seven games. For the Spurs, a team that is an annual championship contender, this was a disappointing end to the season.
While there are plenty of questions that need to be answered about the team's future, San Antonio can always count on the support of their fans. As evidenced by their arrival back in San Antonio this afternoon. Hundreds of Spurs fans greeted the team at the San Antonio airport and loudly thanked them for their play this season.
Losing in the first round after winning the NBA championship the year before is disappointing, but the Spurs can take comfort in the fact their fans will always be there for them.
The San Antonio Spurs PARTIED LIKE CHAMPS hours after they were eliminated ... with Tim Duncan dragging one of his hammered teammates out of a nightclub ... and TMZ Sports has the footage.
Tony Parker, Tim Duncan, Boris Diaw and the rest of the squad hit up Project Club L.A. in Hollywood on Saturday right after losing a Game 7 thriller to the Clippers.
After almost three years of dating, Tiger Woods and Lindsey Vonn have broken up.
"After nearly three years together, Tiger and I have mutually decided to end our relationship. I will always cherish the memories that we've created together. Unfortunately, we both lead incredibly hectic lives that force us to spend a majority of our time apart. I will always admire and respect Tiger. He and his beautiful family will always hold a special place in my heart."
Woods released a statement on TigerWoods.com as well.
"I have great admiration, respect and love for Lindsey and I'll always cherish our time together. She has been amazing with Sam and Charlie and my entire family. Unfortunately, we lead very hectic lives and are both competing in demanding sports. It's difficult to spend time together."
Just two weeks ago, Vonn made media appearances and commented on her relationship with the 14-time major winner and his two children. Vonn walked with Woods during the Masters in early April and watched as Charlie and Sam caddied for Woods in the Par-3 Contest.
“I feel privileged to be along for the ride, and I help as much as I can," Vonn said at a movie premiere. "They’re great kids — I love ’em."
Vonn also appeared on Late Night with Seth Meyers and discussed how injuries between the two world-class athletes brought them closer together.
"We were kind of injured around the same time, and it was nice to just be in the gym with someone that knew what you were going through," Vonn said. "We kinda just pushed each other back to health."
In February, after Woods withdrew from the Farmers Insurance Open in San Diego, he was spotted supporting Vonn during her FIS Alpine Skiing Championships.
"Right now, I need a lot of work on my game, and to still spend time with the people that are important to me," Woods said at the event.
Woods and Vonn were together for nearly three years, and their relationship went public on March 18, 2013, via Facebook. They were often seen together over the past few years at each other’s events – Vonn at Woods’ tournaments and Tiger at her skiing competitions.
Wizards win Game 1, 104-98 over Hawks Atlanta: Shot 25.0% in 2nd half, worst shooting half of the season.
Brewers fire manager Ron Roenicke Brewers are MLB-worst 7-18, tied for their 2nd-worst 25-game start (5-20 in 1970)
BY RODNEY HO/ email@example.com, originally filed Sunday, May 3, 2015
Legendary comic Bill Cosby calmly dealt with a couple of hecklers during his show at Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre Saturday night.
Before the concert, 20 protesters outside the venue chanted “We believe the women,” referencing the dozens of women who have publicly accused him of sexual assault and in many cases, rape. An actress Lili Bernard, who said Cosby raped her in 1992 around the time she guested on “The Cosby Show,” flew into Atlanta to be part of the protest.
Unlike the concert featuring comic Lewis Black the night before at the same venue which I attended, security for Cosby’s concert was significantly enhanced. All attendees were checked for weapons with a wand and required to show ID.
Hawks: each of last 3 times they won Game 1, they went on to lose the series
Pete Rose, baseball's Hit King, to join FOX, FS1 as MLB analyst
FOX Sports is about to find out.
Rose will serve FOX as a guest analyst for the MLB on FOX pregame show on FOX and FOX Sports 1 and will also appear on "MLB Whiparound," "America's Pregame" and "FOX Sports Live" on FOX Sports 1.
FOX officials say they are hiring Rose for his on-air presence and that he will make for compelling television regardless of how one views his controversial past.
The network's move comes at a time when Rose, baseball's all-time hits leader with 4,256, has officially requested that new Commissioner Rob Manfred lift his lifetime ban from the sport.
Rose, who turned 74 on April 14, was banished in 1989 for violating Rule 21(d) while managing the Cincinnati Reds. The rule states that any player, umpire or club or league official or employee who bets on baseball shall be declared permanently ineligible.
Manfred recently told CNBC that he plans to give Rose's case a "full and fresh look." The new commissioner's predecessors, Bud Selig and Fay Vincent, had denied Rose's requests for reinstatement.
FOX, a broadcast partner of Major League Baseball, did not require the sport's permission to hire Rose. But network officials said they made baseball fully aware of their decision to audition Rose and then sign him to a contract.
Rose said that he is not joining FOX with the idea that it will help him gain reinstatement.
Rose, who lives in Las Vegas, said his schedule leaves him plenty of time to watch games. He signs autographs every day from noon to 4:30 PT in the Art of Music store at The Shoppes at Mandalay Bay. He then goes home, often with a salad from Subway, and watches a full slate of games, starting in the East and ending in the West.
It’s April 20. 4/20. The unofficial marijuana holiday. It’s also the day on which the marijuana amnesty ends for all NFL players.
Players not in the substance-abuse program are subject to one test per year, from April 20 through August 9. After submitting to that one test per year, a player can smoke at will — and/or take other drugs prohibited by the substance-abuse policy (e.g., cocaine, amphetamines, morphine, codeine, hydrocodone, oxycodone, PCP, MDMA) — without fear of consequence. (During the regular season, amphetamines and MDMA become PEDs.)
That’s how Aaron Hernandez managed to chain-smoke marijuana. He stopped long enough before April 20 to let the metabolites exit his system, and then once he gave a sample it was time to crack open the turkey bag.
Until the next April 20, the only risk comes from getting arrested for marijuana possession, having a joint fall out of a player’s jacket in the presence of a league official, and/or admitting publicly to smoking marijuana. (For example, when former NFL receiver Randy Moss admitted to smoking marijuana “every blue moon,” Moss nearly landed in the program.)
Once in the program, testing can happen up to 10 times per month. Which means up to 120 times per year. As opposed to the one test per year.
So, basically, a player not in the program needs to stop smoking on or about March 20 and to quit until after taking his once-per-year test. After that, it’s smoke ’em if you got ’em until the next March 20.
Mayweather vs. Pacquiao: Pac-Man Reportedly to Earn $2.2M by Sponsors for Shorts
According to the Manila Bulletin (h/t Daily Mail's Michael Gadd), Pacquiao is set to make $2.25 million alone from the sponsorships on his trunks, the highest total any boxer has made from the venture.
"The rate for this fight is different from the previous (fights)," said Eric Pineda, Pacquiao's business manager, per Nick Giongco of the Manila Bulletin. "So far, we have six (companies) that will have their logos on Manny’s trunks."
That seems like a king's ransom just to get your logo on a boxer's fight garb. Mayweather vs. Pacquiao is set to be the highest-grossing fight of all time, though, so getting that kind of visibility comes with a heavy cost. Plenty of American companies pay millions to have a commercial air during the Super Bowl.
Either way, Pacquiao will earn himself a couple more million on top of the millions he's already in line to receive from this highly anticipated bout.
Josh Hamilton files for divorce from wife Katie
The petition doesn't detail the couple's problems, but it cites conflict between them as a reason for the divorce. Hamilton has a long history of substance abuse problems and earlier this year he self-reported a relapse.
Hamilton outlined 34 requests in the petition. Among the requests: prohibiting his wife from using a Maserati and 1972 Chevrolet Blazer in his possession; prohibiting her from "hiding" the children from him; prohibiting her from making disparaging remarks against him or his family.
In March, Katie Hamilton submitted in court a general denial to Josh Hamilton's petition.
This month, the couple agreed not to communicate with each other as the case proceeds.
Hamilton can't see his children without supervision, according to court records. He is also prohibited from going to the couple's properties in Westlake, Texas; Newport Coast, California; and Valley Mills, Texas.
The $16.5 million home in Newport Coast went up for sale on Friday.
Hamilton hasn't been with the Angels since he underwent right shoulder surgery before spring training and reported his relapse.
Angels owner Arte Moreno has said that Hamilton might not play for Los Angeles again. Hamilton is owed $83 million over the final three seasons of a $125 million, five-year deal the 2010 AL MVP signed in 2012.
Angels manager Mike Scioscia met with Hamilton last week for the first time in months, and he said he isn't sure when the star will return to the team.
Hamilton is not being disciplined by Major League Baseball for his relapse.
Report: Redmond's job with Marlins could be in jeopardy
The Miami Marlins may look to make a dramatic change in the clubhouse if their early-season struggles aren't rectified soon.
After guiding his club to a 3-10 start this season following a winter filled with high-profile acquisitions, Marlins manager Mike Redmond's job could be in jeopardy, according to Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald.
Sources indicated that the organization is already mulling potential replacements for the third-year manager, and Wally Backman - the current manager for the New York Mets' affiliate in the Triple-A Pacific Coast League - is a possible candidate to replace Redmond.
Team owner Jeffrey Loria has shown he's not averse to radical personnel changes, and comments from outfielder Giancarlo Stanton earlier this week did little to inspire confidence in the Miami clubhouse culture.
"We're not really giving ourselves a chance, it feels like," Stanton told MLB.com's Joe Frisaro after his club's 4-1 loss to the Mets on Friday. "We've got a positive vibe, but (something) is just not there. The fire is not there, it seems like. You always want to have it. But when you're out there, and it's game time, it's just nothing there -- it seems like."
After signing Stanton to a record-breaking 13-year, $325-million extension this winter, the Marlins beefed up their roster considerably in an effort to snap an 11-year playoff drought.
1 CLEMSON - (37000)
2 LOUISVILLE (23187)
3 FSU (17250)
4 PIT (5395)
5 WF (4500)
6 Ga TECH 4000
7 SYRACUSE (4000)
8 MIAMI (3500)
9 UVA (3000)
Cardinals edged the Reds 2-1 in a speedy 2 hours, 2 minutes last night ... the quickest game of the MLB season by 11 minutes
The Spurs also lost their first playoff game in 2003, 2005 and 2007. They won the championship each of those seasons.
Here's an early look at my confidential today. If you have a good story that is confidential worthy send it to @realmattlanta on Twitter or email it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The NFL offseason is filled with crazy rumors. Sometimes they turn out to be true, but other times, well, not so much. It goes without saying that everything should be taken with a grain of salt until reputable sources are confirming them.
In the meantime, here's a crazy rumor that emerged on Monday night. This comes from an exclusive story by Chat Sports writer Mack Ferguson. According to Ferguson, the Cleveland Browns and the Philadelphia Eaglesare involved in trade talks. Here's what he had to say:
"According to a source very close to an agent involved in the trade talks, the Cleveland Browns and Philadelphia Eagles have engaged in multiple discussions to send Browns QB Johnny Manziel, who is currently in rehab, and draft picks, to the Eagles in exchange for Eagles QB Sam Bradford, who was recently acquired via trade from the St. Louis Rams. According to our source, both sides are very motivated to get a deal done, with each side valuing the other’s QB more than the QB currently on their rosters."
Ferguson goes on to say that there are some factors preventing a deal from happening. One of them is Bradford's reluctance to sign a long-term deal with Cleveland. Another one is that the Eagles apparently want a first round pick from Cleveland along with Manziel.
The reason why the Eagles are so determined to get a first round pick, according to Ferguson, is because Philadelphia still wants to acquire Marcus Mariota.
"Our source went further and said that the Eagles are also hell-bent on moving up into the top 2-4 picks in the NFL Draft to select Marcus Mariota (who played under Eagles coach Chip Kelly at Oregon) and need the Browns 1st round pick to be a part of the deal so they can then use it as part of a deal to move into the top 4."
RORY McILROY 6/1
JORDAN SPIETH 10/1
BUBBA WATSON 12/1
JASON DAY 13/1
DUSTIN JOHNSON 14/1
ADAM SCOTT 20/1
HENRIK STENSON 20/1
JIMMY WALKER 20/1
PHIL MICKELSON 23/1
RICKIE FOWLER 32/1
PATRICK REED 32/1
MATT KUCHAR 38/1
JUSTIN ROSE 40/1
TIGER WOODS 40/1
SERGIO GARCIA 40/1
BRANDT SNEDEKER 40/1
J.B. HOLMES 45/1
LEE WESTWOOD 50/1
LOUIS OOSTHUIZEN 60/1
PAUL CASEY 66/1
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA 75/1
BILLY HORSCHEL 80/1
RYAN PALMER 80/1
KEEGAN BRADLEY 80/1
JIM FURYK 90/1
BROOKS KOEPKA 90/1
IAN POULTER 95/1
MARTIN KAYMER 100/1
ZACH JOHNSON 100/1
VICTOR DUBUISSON 100/1
RYAN MOORE 100/1
FRED COUPLES 285/1
ERNIE ELS 315/1
TOM WATSON 2000/1
Ben Crenshaw 2500/1
Will Tiger make the cut?
$150 wins $100 if YES
$100 wins $130 if NO
$100 in Tiger to finish in Top 20 pays $225
$100 on Tiger to withdraw pays $550
Fisher said he's "had people inquire that if I'd be interested, through agents and stuff like that" but that "it's just not something I've jumped on right away." He would not rule out eventually leaving college for the pros:
I never say never. I'm not one of those guys that that's my end-all ambition. But in this business you never say never. I've had some opportunities to go up in the NFL and I've chosen not to do it, as coordinators and coaches — not as a head coach, I've had some people inquire. But it's not a driving force for me to do that, not saying I wouldn't ever do it, because you'll never know in this business. But I love being a college football coach, I love living in the South, I love being able to get three or four first-round draft picks in a class instead of only picking one.
Fisher has never held a position on an NFL coaching staff.
Of the seven new coaches hired by NFL teams this offseason, none came from the college ranks. The Philadelphia Eagles' Chip Kelly, formerly of Oregon, and the Houston Texans' Bill O'Brien, previously at Penn State, are the most notable coaches to make the college-to-NFL jump recently.
Fisher is 58-11 in five seasons at Florida State, winning the BCS National Championship in 2014 and losing in the national semifinal in 2015.
Twelve-year-old Sam Holtz did not watch much, if any, college basketball this season, but he finished tied for first out of 11.57 million entries in ESPN's Tournament Challenge.
Holtz tied with one other person for the top spot but won the tiebreaker. How did he manage to do that without following the regular season? He just picked the teams he liked.
Whether it was luck or skill, nobody can deny the youngster of his moment.
Those who finished in the top 1 percent of the Tournament Challenge will be entered in a drawing for the grand prize, which is a $20,000 gift card and a trip to the 2015 Maui Invitational. Unfortunately for Holtz, the rules also say entrants must be at least 18 years old to be eligible.
Even if Holtz does not win the grand prize, he should be incredibly proud of what he accomplished.
The Duke Blue Devils are the 2014-15 men's college basketball national champions, thanks to a group of freshmen who could be one-and-done. Sports Illustrated came up with the perfect pun to celebrate the accomplishment.
Tyus Jones (2015 Final Four Most Outstanding Player), Jahlil Okafor (potential No. 1 overall pick in 2015 NBA draft) and Justise Winslow all earned great reviews in their first season at Duke. With a national title now on their resumes, they could each decide that they are ready for the next step.
So while many expected the Kentucky Wildcats to be the "won-and-done" squad, it's Duke that has taken that title.
ESPN Stats & Info @ESPNStatsInfo · 6h 6 hours ago
J.J. Redick had his 9th 25-point game since March 1. Only players with more in that time? Westbrook, Harden, and Curry.
Duncan, Parker & Ginobili are playing their 730th game together, passing Bird/McHale/Parish for most games by a trio in NBA history
The average cost for a small draft beer at Major League Baseball games this season is $5.98, down from $6.09 in 2014, according to data collected from each team by Team Marketing Report.
Fans of the Boston Red Sox, Chicago Cubs, and Philadelphia Phillies will all have to shell out at least $7.75 for a beer at the stadiums for those teams. At Cleveland Indians and Arizona Diamondbacks games, you can get a beer for $4.00.
Here is a look at how much a small draft beer costs at each ballpark (size of beer in ounces is in parentheses).
It is not going to help you once you are at a ballpark, but things look different if we consider which teams offer the best beer deal for their small beer in terms of price per ounce.
Now we get a better idea of just how expensive it is to drink beer at Fenway Park for Red Sox games, where it will cost fans $0.65 per ounce — $0.15 per ounce more than any other team.
At $0.28 per ounce, the Angels' 16-ounce beer for $4.50 is the best deal in MLB.
Sheriff’s deputies in Alabama confiscated more than 100 cases of beer and numerous bottles of liquor Monday from a group of LSU students on their way to Gulf Shores for spring break, according to the Mobile County Sheriff’s Office.
The students, Harrison Coogan, 18; Brandon Barber, 19; Hunter Coker, 18; and Carson Buckner, 19, were on Interstate 10 in a Ford pickup that was towing a trailer with an expired tag when they were stopped by deputies, said Lori Myles, a Mobile County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman.
During the stop, the pickup’s driver gave deputies consent to search the trailer, where authorities found nearly 2,000 beers, five liters of boxed wine and eight bottles of liquor, Myles said.
The students, who identified themselves to deputies as fraternity members, were en route to the beach to meet “a larger group of people for the week of spring break,” Myles said.
The four men joined the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity at LSU in the fall.
The men were issued minor in possession of alcohol summonses. None were drinking when they were pulled over, and all the men cooperated fully with deputies, Myles said.
Among the confiscated alcoholic beverages were 106 18-packs of Natural Light beer, five 12-packs of Corona beer and five liters of Franzia boxed wine. Several bottles of tequila, vodka, whiskey and rum also were collected by deputies.
“I’m pretty shocked and confused,” said Mark Coker, Hunter Coker’s father, adding that he hadn’t heard of the incident until he was contacted by a reporter. “I’m really surprised.”
Georgia gives Falcons a tax break on stadium expenses
The taxpayers will be paying an even larger share of the costs for the Falcons’ new stadium.
Georgia has agreed to give the Falcons (and the Atlanta Braves, who are also building a new stadium) an exemption from paying sales tax when they buy building materials for the stadium. With an enormous project like the building of a stadium, that amounts to a tax break that could be in the tens of millions of dollars.
William Perry, the executive director of Common Cause Georgia, told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution that the decision to give tax breaks to sports teams is a bad deal for the average taxpayer.
“I don’t think that most people know that on top of the taxes collected for these facilities, that they aren’t paying sales taxes themselves,” Perry said. “It’s this kind of thing that causes the total public investment to keep going up and up.”
But the head of the state agency that oversees the building of the Falcons’ stadium says the risk of losing Georgia’s beloved NFL team makes it worth it for the public to contribute. And that’s really what it comes down to: If the taxpayers in Georgia won’t finance a stadium for the Falcons, the taxpayers somewhere else will. Until every municipality agrees to stop building stadiums for sports teams, the owners will keep taking the taxpayers’ money.
Chris Borland, who retired over concerns about head injuries, says he plans to pay back most of signing bonus
Former San Francisco 49ers linebacker Chris Borland, who announced his retirement from the NFL last week at age 24, says he plans to pay back most of the signing bonus he received from the team.
Speaking on CBS' "Face the Nation" on Sunday, Borland said he would pay back three-fourths of the $617,436 signing bonus he received from the 49ers last year. That means he's giving up $463,077.
Borland signed a four-year deal with the 49ers after he was drafted 77th overall by the team last year.
Borland said he wasn't second-guessing his decision to part with the money.
"To play one year, it's not a cash grab as I've been accused of," he said "I'm paying back three-fourths of my signing bonus. I'm only taking the money I've earned."
Under the NFL's collective bargaining agreement, the 49ers have the right to recover the signing bonus. The team hasn't said publicly whether they were planning to collect the money.
Vic Carucci of the Buffalo News, who previously worked directly for the Browns, reports that the Browns are the front runners to be featured on the 2015 edition of HBO’s Hard Knocks.
The Browns fall within the scope of the teams that can be forced in 2015 to do Hard Knocks. Only teams with new head coaches, teams that have appeared in the playoffs the past two years, and teams that have appeared on the series in the past decade can be compelled to open their training camp to the NFL Films cameras and microphones.
This year, the teams that fall within that category are the Browns, Texans, Titans, Jaguars, Washington, Giants, Vikings, Buccaneers, and Rams.
Last year, the Falcons volunteered even though they weren’t one of the eight teams that could have been required to submit.
In 2010, Browns coach Mike Pettine worked for the Jets when the Jets became the darlings of Hard Knocks, with Rex Ryan’s antics winning plenty of Emmys for folks responsible for producing the show.
Pettine and the Browns declined the opportunity in 2014; “Let’s get through the first year,” the now-second-year coach said at the time.
The Panthers have worked the fringes of free agency, but they brought another name veteran in Saturday who could provide immediate help.
The 31-year-old Jennings was released by the Vikings, but would provide an immediate help for the Panthers, in that he’s a productive receiver on his own and experienced enough to help groom Kelvin Benjamin.
ESPN’s Adam Rubin reports that Bartolo Colon is expected to start for the Mets on Opening Day, April 6 in Washington against the Nationals. Jacob deGrom is expected to start the Mets’ home opener on April 13 against the Phillies.
Colon, who turns 42 in May, is in the final year of his two-year, $20 million deal with the Mets. He finished with a 4.09 ERA and a 151/30 K/BB ratio in 202 1/3 innings last season.
DeGrom, 26, broke out last season with a 2.69 ERA and a 144/43 K/BB ratio in 140 1/3 innings as a rookie.
Matt Harvey, returning from Tommy John surgery, is expected to make his 2015 season debut on April 9 against the Nationals. Despite the injury, it’s surprising the Mets aren’t giving him the start for either game.
Well, this is awesome. According to Bill Shakin of the Los Angeles Times, MLB has scheduled every game on the final day of the regular season to start at the same time. The idea with this new little wrinkle is to ramp up the drama leading into the playoffs:
“If a game impacts another game, they’re all occurring at the same time, so no team would be put into a lame-duck situation because their fate already had been decided by an earlier result,” said Tony Pettiti, MLB chief operating officer.
“If we do have games coming down to the wire, we want to make sure we maximize that day.”
In addition to all the drama, excitement, and nail-biting which will surely commence on that afternoon, it might also change how some teams approach things. The Pirates lost on the final day of the regular season last year, which clinched the NL Central for the Cardinals. The Cardinals had a later start and were able to scratch Adam Wainwright at the last minute and rest him for Game 1 of the NLDS against the Dodgers. Teams won’t have the luxury to wait on decisions like that anymore. You’re going to have to go for it.
It’s hard to see a negative with this idea. If anything, the hardest part will be trying to keep up with everything that might be going on. Of course, that will be a fun problem to have for baseball fans. Bring on the chaos.
A college baseball player was kicked off his team for referring to Mo’Ne Davis as a “sl-t” on Twitter.
Joey Casselberry, who played at Bloomsburg University in Philadelphia, tweeted Friday in response to hearing that Disney was going to be making a movie about Davis’ life. He said “WHAT A JOKE. That sl-t got rocked by Nevada.”
After his tweet went viral, Casselberry tweeted Saturday to apologize for what he wrote.
“An example that one stupid tweet can ruin someone’s life and I couldn’t be more sorry about my actions last night. I please ask you to forgive me and truly understand that I am in no way shape or form a sexist and I am a huge fan of Mo’ne. She was quite an inspiration,” Casselberry tweeted before deactivating his account.
Casselberry is no longer listed on the school’s baseball roster. The school also issued a statement about the incident.
“Bloomsburg Univ is deeply saddened by what was written about Mo’ne Davis by one of our student-athletes. His words do not represent us.
“We take matter very seriously; addressed the issue with the student-athlete (who has been dismissed from team), coach, and the team.”
According to Charles Barkley, Cliff Alexander needs to keep up his strong play from the first half for Kansas:
Gilbert Arenas is in a beef with Steve Francis and responded to an apparent threat via Instagram Thursday in his typical humorous fashion.
Matters began when Franchise was dragged by his chain and beat up inside a club at a Houston rap show two weeks ago. Many people had a few laughs at the former baller being at a club at 38 years old and getting his behind whooped, but Franchise apparently didn’t find it so funny.
Let’s start with the two videos Arenas posted to mock Franchise in response to the news:
“Any NIGGA out there try this bull shit on ME…MEET me at the bathroom NIGGA so (i can just hand it too you )you know how hard it is too have sex with ur girl after gettn dragged thru a club???mannn imma give u this chain..call my insurance company say ive been robbed by EITHER a nigga with dreads or a Mexican…6months later i got back triple the vaule of what i paid..#smartniggasshit #steveF YO old ass should be watching #netflix like the rest of us becuz that BOOT to the chest look like it #HURTTTED” Arenas wrote on March 5.
He Arenas posted another video two days later: showing how to react when gettting jumped.
Word of Arenas mocking him must have gotten back to Francis, because Gil posted this note on Instagram (along with the photo seen at top) of himself issuing a challenge to the former Rockets baller.
“I just recieved a text saying (u have 2 hrs too remove those videos about #steve or we on yo head) so heres my reply back becuz im not a PUNK….you will have to get a round trip ticket from #maryland too #LAX which will cost you any where from 2k to $299 if u have a #buddypass on #southwest..then once u land you will have to get a #uber ALL the way to #calabasas in traffic…that will run u about $45…i carry no more then $25 and a debt card on me and im NOT gonna give u the code #lol…so once you finish whooping my ass,your profit gain is only $25…im sure after all the hard work u just put in,you will be thirsty..now u will have to make a stop too quench ur thirst..2large gatorades $1.98…now u have to drive back to #LAX ur #uber cost is high.. atleast over $110 plus tip..my $25 plus $85 of ur own money smdh…i know you will get hungry in the airport so thats another $15-30 bucks …from the look of things this is a bad investment for you…ass whoopings are suppose to be free…whooping my ass will cost u atleast $400.98 bucks…soooo technically..I WON..i whooped that ass financially and if u keep talking shit imma take my ass to #thousandoaks..that will cost yo goofy ass another $100 hahahahahahahaha take this LOST like a man..”
By Ed Bouchette / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Jason Worilds has gone from having NFL teams pounding on his door, urging him to take their tens of millions of dollars to play for them, to perhaps literally knocking on doors to convert others to his religion.
He gave up football for faith.
Worilds, 27, abruptly announced his retirement early Wednesday morning on Twitter, and Steelers sources say they were told it is to devote his time to working for his religion, the Jehovah’s Witnesses.
He informed the Steelers of his retirement in a phone call Tuesday, the day he became an unrestricted free agent and one of the top linebackers available for any team to sign. The Steelers were hoping to lure him back with a multiyear contract after they paid him nearly $10 million in 2014. His 7½ sacks tied for the team lead in 2014 from his outside linebacker position.
Worilds could no be reached for further comment, nor did his agents return phone calls.
Had Worilds stayed with football, there was a good chance he might have signed as a free agent with another team. But had he signed a big contract elsewhere, the Steelers would have reaped a compensatory draft pick in 2016 for the loss, possibly in the third or fourth round. Now, they will get nothing.
Worilds turned down a chance to earn a contract that would have averaged $7 million-$8 million annually with guaranteed earnings of between $14 million and $16 million. Baltimore’s Pernell McPhee received a five-year, $40 million contract from Chicago with $16 million guaranteed, and Philadelphia re-signed Brandon Graham to a four-year, $26 million contract with $14 million guaranteed. Both are outside linebackers.
#Redskins are signing CB Chris Culliver to a 4-year deal, source said. Another top corner off the board.
One of the top-rated free agents left in the Class of 2015 has caught the eye of the Raiders.
PFT’s Mike Florio confirms the Raiders have interest in Hardy, who is on the commissioner’s exempt list stemming from domestic violence charges that were dismissed in February after he was found guilty in an earlier bench trial. The NFL has ruled that Hardy can sign with a club, though more discipline is possible.
The 26-year-old Hardy emerged as one of the NFL’s top pass rushers in 2012 and 2013, notching a combined 26 sacks in that span. However, he played in just one game a season ago before being placed on paid leave.
Several teams, including the Panthers, are known to not be interested in Hardy. But the Raiders appear to at least be looking into him.
Per a source with knowledge of the situation, strong mutual interests exists between Spiller and the New Orleans Saints.
Spiller would be a great fit in the New Orleans offense, possibly filling the role that remains as a practical matter vacant after the 2014 trade of Darren Sproles to the Eagles.
The question becomes money. With $4 million per year invested in Mark Ingram, will that much or more go to Spiller?
If/when a deal is done, that will be the most interesting aspect of the Spiller joining the Saints. As noted last Saturday, the role envisioned for Spiller will dictate his compensation — which means that his compensation will shed plenty of light on his anticipated role.
The NFL is in the midst of negotiations for an intriguing rights deal that is only tangentially related to football. The league is shopping a 90-minute documentary on the making of the Super Bowl halftime show to its network partners for a late April showing.
It might not be the “Thursday Night Football” package, but league executives have engaged CBS, ESPN, Fox and NBC in discussions. NFL Network holds the rights to re-air the documentary after it airs with one of the league’s broadcast partners.
The documentary, which is rife with coverage of Katy Perry preparing for the show, is part of the NFL’s effort to broaden its appeal beyond football fans.
The Super Bowl’s halftime show has proved to be an even bigger TV draw than the game itself. In 2014, 115.3 million viewers watched Bruno Marsand the Red Hot Chili Peppers on Fox. Last month, 118.5 million viewers tuned into NBC to watch Perry, Missy Elliott and Lenny Kravitz.
Producers started shooting footage for the Perry documentary in October, with the singer’s first creative meeting. The crew used seven cameras and came up with around 100 hours of material that will be edited into 72 minutes. Semiao remarked that producers were given more access than he was expecting. For example, a trailer from the documentary shows Perry pacing in a bathroom at University of Phoenix Stadium, waiting for the first half to end so she can begin her performance.
Unless you have been living without TV for the past few weeks, there is no way you have not seen the promos of the upcoming ESPN 30 for 30 special on Christian Laettner set to air Sunday night. The film is called “I Hate Christian Laettner,” which seems like a negative title, but it’s actually supposed to be a movie that will portray him in a positive light. That will be much different from the last time Laettner’s name came up on an ESPN Films production.
One of the takeaways from the 2011 Jalen Rose-produced “The Fab Five” documentary was how much disdain that Michigan squad had for the Duke basketball program, culture, coach, and players. In one clip, Jimmy King is seen describing Laettner as a “b-tch,” whle Rose says he thought Laettner was a p—y.
During an interview with Scott Van Pelt and Ryen Russillo this week to promote his 30 for 30 program, Laettner showed how bothered he was by what the former Michigan players had to say about him.
“Hey, me and my buddy can make a movie too and badmouth as many people as we want, too. And I was surprised that ESPN let them do that. … I was disappointed in that. That’s not what life is about. But maybe someone told Jalen we want to make a provocative movie and start saying Laettner’s a b-tch and Laettner’s a p—y. I guess that’s what life is about. I don’t appreciate it and I don’t like it, but it’s something I won’t ever do,” Laettner said in the interview.
We can understand why Laettner would be bothered by the Fab Five documentary; nobody wants to hear people calling them names in that way. That’s exactly why Grant Hill and Bobby Hurley fired back at Rose and company. And on Sunday, Laettner will have his chance to portray himself the way he likes when his film comes out.
Kyrie Irving's 57 points are * The most scored by a LeBron James' teammate * The most scored against a Gregg Popovich-coached team.
Most 50-point Games Before 23rd Birthday NBA History Rick Barry 7 LeBron James 3 Kyrie Irving 2
More than 100 players are scheduled to attend the inaugural NFL Veteran Combine March 22 in Arizona, where free agents hope to catch the attention of the league's 32 teams.
The NFL will conduct its inaugural NFL Veteran Combine on March 22 at the Arizona Cardinals Practice Facility in Tempe, Ariz. Players will be tested and evaluated by experienced NFL scouting personnel. Measurements, combine results, and videos of the workouts will be compiled and shared electronically with all 32 NFL clubs.
Free agents planning to attend range from veteran players who have been starters in the NFL to players who are one year out of college with no regular-season experience.
“Combines have long provided draft eligible players with the forum needed to showcase their skills to NFL teams,” says NFL Director of Football Development Matt Birk. “The NFL Veteran Combine will give veteran free agents a similar opportunity to work out in front of club personnel in a streamlined process.”
The NFL Veteran Combine will serve to consolidate individual veteran free agent tryouts to one location, streamlining the process for NFL teams and participating players. Invited free agents will have the opportunity to perform position-specific and timed drills in front of scouts from all 32 NFL clubs.
NFL Media will provide fans with coverage of the Veteran Combine across all platforms including NFL Network, NFL.com, NFL Mobile from Verizon, and NFL Now. NFL Network will air a one-hour special on the Veteran Combine at 8:00 PM ET on Sunday, March 22. Fans also may get updates from across the NFL's official social media channels. For more information on the Veteran Combine, visit NFL.com.
This event is part of the NFL Combine Series under the NFL Football Development platform.
Position groups will work out at the following times (all times local):
Here's a list of 2015 NFL Veteran Combine participants (subject to change):