Posted on Leave a comment

Manchester City’s flight to China delayed for second time

content_img

data-js=”article-body” data-insert-mobile-adslot>

It will also cause embarice Evra is adamant Paul Pogba will be staying this season.Real Madrid remain keen on the midfielder.But Evra, speaking in Monaco for the Champions League draw, stated: “Paul is focused, Paul is in Manchester and he will stay in Manchester. There havrassment to the tournament’s organisers as City have not been able to fulfil their media duties to promote the tournament.

City will spend a week in China before heading on to Hong Kong and J.The full-back has only started 30 Premier League games for the club since arriving five years ago.The 24-year-old, who was a hot prospect at Southampton when he made the move to North London, wants to establish himself in the first team.And he sees apan, playing four games on their unnar Solskjaer admits Paul Pogba won’t be available for their Europa League tie with AZ Alkmaar.United have already qualified for the knockout stages of the competition but must avoid defeat against AZ to ensure they win Group L.When asked about wheshort tour of the Far East before taking on Liverpool in the Community Shield at Wembley on August 4.

A Premier League spokesman said: “Manchester City have experienced administration issues [with their flight], it is being addressed and it will not affect their participation in the Premier League Asia Trophy. We look forward to welcoming them to Shanghai and Nanjing.”

Posted on Leave a comment

Mousa Dembele casts doubt over his Tottenham future with talks on hold until after the World Cup

content_img

data-js=”article-body” data-insert-mobile-adslot>

“At the beginning of the season, I said ‘I had physical problems, I want to see at the end of the season how I feel’. That’s what the club and I decided by mutual agreement.

“If we talk about a new contract in the middle of the season, it will cost energy. Imagine that a player feels not appreciated after a disappointing proposal, it can disrupt his game.

“At this moment, I am very happy at Tottenham. I do not lie when I say that I do not think about a big transfer. I want to play a World Cup and afterwards we will see.

“Really, I’m not aware of the interest of other clubs. And, besides, I told my agent to wait for the summer to tell me about any offers. For now, I’m only focussing on Tottenham. Maybe this is my last season. Or maybe I’ll sign a new deal. We’ll see.”

Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy has insisted that players will only leave the club if Pochettino gives his blessing, regardless of their contract situations.

Central defender Toby Alderweireld is expected to move after his contract negotiations were put on hold and uncertainty over Dembele will concern fans.

Pochettino has hailed Dembele a “genius” and one of the best players he has ever worked with, buerbroker Franz Beckenbauer admits he’d like to see James Rodriguez stay.James is coming to the end of a two season loan at Bayern from Real Madrid and can be bought outright for €42m.However, Bayern coach Niko Kovac would prefer James be allowed tot his age and injury record mean that contract negotiations could be complicated.

His next contract represents Dembele’s last chance to earn himself a lucrative deal and the Belgian is also keen to finish his career with more medals.

Whether or ded four youngsters to his senior squad.United have officially added young players Mason Greenwood, Angel Gomes, Tahith Chong and James Garner to their first team squad.Solskjaer is keen for the quarter to be heavily involved in first team matters thnot Tottenham are ready to make a big commitment to Dembele and also provide evidence they can start to star Salomon Rondon says he could rejoin the club in the future.Rondon is currently in China, where he joined former boss Rafa Benitez at Dalian Yifang.But he admits that it was not entirely his choice to leave, as Newcastle did not offer him a contwin trophies may ultimately decide whether or not an agreement is reached after the World Cup.

Regardless of Dembele’s future, Tottenham are keen to strengthen their midfield during the summer and had hoped Italy’s Bryan Cristante would play a part against England at Wembley on Tuesday night.

Spurs have been tracking Cristante, who is on loan at Atalanta from Benfica, but he was left on the substitutes’ bench by Italy. He has played all through the age groups for his country and made two senior appearances.

Posted on Leave a comment

Pep Guardiola to explain yellow ribbon stance in letter to the FA

content_img

data-js=”article-body” data-insert-mobile-adslot>

In 2016, Fifa had ruled that poppies on shirts contravened its rules on political symbols but the FA defied the regulation with England’s players wearing poppies for an international against Scotland close to Remembrance Day in November that year and later secured a new ruling from Fifa to permit poppies.

Guardiola could also consider arguing that his was unwitting. The ribbon had been concealed under a bomber jacket he was wearing during the first half at the DW Stadium last Monday but Guardiola ended up unzipping the jacket in the second half, leaving the symbol clearly visible. Guardiola had clashed with Wigan manager Paul Cook at the end of the first half after City defender Fabian Delph’s red card.   

Guardiola elected to wear the ribbon on his jumper during City’s Carabao Cup final win over Arsenal on Sunday although it was mostly concealed during the game by a coat and scarf. The Catalan is free to wear the ribbon before and after matches and during pressWolves striker Rafa Mir is attracting fresh Spanish interest.El Periodico de Aragón says Wolves striker Mir is wanted by Real Zaragoza.Mir spent last season on loan at Las Palmas.He’s due to go back to Wolves – and is also being linked with Hull City.Wolves boss Nuno is expected to take a close look at Mir in preseason before making a final decision. conferences.

Some City fans wore ribbons in support of Guardiola on Sundanited .Although City have no chance of catching runaway leaders Liverpool , their top-four status is assured, with Guardiola’s side holding a 15-point lead over fifth-placed United.”When we believe it’s more important for them, we’re going to lose,” y and the manager thanked them for that. “The feeling to belong to something, I am really grateful for that initiative,” he said.

“They don’t have to do it. It is another country, yet they did that. That makes me really happy because that makes people understand the situation, what is going on, people in prison in Spain so 100 per cent grateful to them.”

City face Arsenal in the Premier League tomorrow with Guardiola insisting the league is the priority over the Champions League. City are 13 points clear of Manchester United with 11 fixtures to play.

“We are fighting for the most important title of the season by far, the Premier League, more than Champions League, more important than the FA Cup, Carabao Cup. That is enough encouragement to be focused,” he said.

“The next six fixtures are terrible in terms of quality of the opponents, and we have four games away and we still have to win six games. When you think about Arsenal, you think about Chelsea, Tottenham and Arsenal and our away games, Stoke City playing for relegation, going to Goodison Park is always a tough game. We have a lot of tough games still to play and have to remain focused.

“The league is always the most difficult, a game every three days. It shows how good you are over 11 months. All the titles I have won, La Liga, Bundesliga, the league is the most difficult. In the Carabao Cup we won two penalty rounds, Bravo saved them or you could be out. That is a toss of a coin, sometimes good, sometimes bad. The league is conso Everton did not happen over the summer.Everton were one of many clubs linked with a possible deal ahead of the summer window.He told HLN: “There was interest and there have been conversations, but it never came to a point where I had to decide: Do istency, the players know that. They know exactly how important the league is for this club, for our futures. Of course we have to be focused, we know how tough it will be until the end of the season.”

Meanwhile, it was revealed today that Guardiola gave a short speech as part of a champagne toast at Manchester City’s training ground on Wednesday afternoon in which he thanked staff for the part they played in helping to win the first trophy of his managerial reign at the club.

Guardiola addressed scores of staff in City’s canteen at their CFA headquarters in the wake of Sunday’s Carabao Cup triumph over Arsenal by telling them, “Thank you to everyone for helping us win”.

The City manager concluded his speech by telling the assembled employees that the team would do everything to ensure they now delivered “the most important title”, the Premier League. City currently lead Manchester United by 13 points with 11 games remaining.

Guardiola’s address was followed by a speech from Omar Berrada, City’s chief operating officer, and a champagne toast. The League Cup was also brought into the canteen for staff to see and have their picture taken with.

Posted on Leave a comment

Robert Woods keeping his sister's word alive

content_img

She was his best friend and a person he looked up to and respected. Not just because she was family. She was his only sibling. Robert Woods’ older sister, Olivia, was a model student, a quality softball pitcher and well-liked by anyone who knew her. For Robert she was a role model and a confidante, but at just 17-years old Olivia Woods was uttering the last words she would ever speak to her younger brother. She was now confiding in him.

Diagnosed with synovial cell sarcoma in her leg at age 12, Olivia had reached the end of a courageous five-year battle that included chemotherapy, radiation and a leg amputation. Meanwhile Robert, two years her junior, was emerging as a budding football star at their high school, Serra, in southern California.

Even from the confines of her bed Olivia reminded Robert to stay humble, but in April 2007, knowing the next words she would speak would be among the last she uttered in the physical world, Olivia had to let her brother in on the conversation she often had with her mother.

“She was a role model for him and she always told me that Robert was going to be special,” said Sharon Woods of her daughter. “I remember Robert telling me that his sister was special, but she really meant it when she would tell me, ‘No, he’s really going to be really something special mom.’ I always was taken with her conviction with what she said.”

In her home with her family by her bed side for the last time she would give her brother some words to live by.

“Her last words to me were that she wanted me to be a model,” Woods said. “And I said, ‘Model? What do you mean?’ So she said it again, ‘I want you to be a model.’ And then it clicked that she was maybe seeing something that I couldn’t. So I took it as, be a role model. Always be positive. Be positive in life. Those were her last words to me. So I guess the whole time here with us she kept me humble, humble, humble and then her last words she put it on me.”

Be a role model.

Not a surprising request from an older sister who was as selfless as they come. After having her leg amputated and returning to school as an early teen, Olivia didn’t want anyone to know she was walking around with a prosthetic leg. Her family adhered to her wishes. She didn’t want any extra attention because she was battling cancer.

When she went to get a summer job she told her mother there would be no mention of her medical condition. She wanted to get the job based on her skills not pity.

“She just wanted to make her own way,” said Mrs. Woods. “She learned how to swim again. In high school she was elected school secretary of state. She was on yearbook committee. She was a real go-getter. We just honored her that way by letting her be herself.”

Being a first-hand witness to all of Olivia’s fighting over those five years only strengthened Robert’s own resolve in everything he put his mind to.

“Robert was the same way,” said Sharon Woods. “He saw her work so hard and fight. She was a strong fighter. I think that rubbed off on him as he got older.”

Long before Olivia’s struggle however, Robert was a pker Antoine Griezmann.Mundo Deportivo says United have entered the race to sign Griezmann this summer.United are monitoring a move for the French World Cup winner and insist that there is no deal agreed for him to join Barcelona yet.The report also aretty self-motivated kid. It didn’t matter what the activity was. Whether it was tee ball, checkers or school work the Woods’ only son didn’t take on any challenge, he attacked it.

“He wasn’t very quiet, he always smiled and laughed. He was always an overachiever,” said his mother. “He always wanted to do things perfectly. He always wanted to be first.”

“In baseball when he was young he always wanted to cover everybody else’s position,” said Mrs. Woods. “We would tell him, ‘You stay there.’ But wherever the ball would go he wanted to go get the ball.”

“Pretty much the whole outfield was mine whether it was left field or right field,” Woods said smiling. “If the ball was in the air I’d try to go and get it.”   

In the fall Woods would play in the very competitive park football league in his hometown of Carson. To illustrate how competitive it was, Woods played on a roster with four other talents who also currently play in the NFL.

“The majority of the teams had a lot of talented players,” said Woods father Robert Jr. “And Robert’s team was talented. Paul Richardson, who was a rookie receiver this past year with Seattle, and Dion Bailey also with Seattle were on his team. Marqise Lee, who plays for Jacksonville. Shaq Richardson now with Pittsburgh was on that team. So as a result there were a lot of kids that had to touch the ball on his team.”

That would prove to be an adjustment for Woods, who wanted to do as much as possible to help his team win.

Woods was making a lot of plays to help his team, but maybe a few too many. Other parents weren’t thrilled with all the opportunities Woods was getting with tnized” by their recent European ban.The Sky Blues have been banned from Champions League football for two seasons, although they are appealing UEFA’s decision.And Rodgers thinks the situation will provide Pep Guardiola’s players with an added motivathe ball, often at the expense of other players who were just as talented. Woods’ parents quickly made Robert understand the value of teamwork.

“We impressed upon him that other players on his team had to get chances with the ball too,” said Robert’s father. “So we told him he had to share the ball with other players.”

The ultra-competitive Woods wasn’t thrilled with the idea, but his father had a solution to appease his son.

“I came up with a phrase for him called ‘touches for touchdowns,'” said Woods. “Whenal.Fotomac reports Arsenal are ahead in the chase to sign the player, who only joined Juventus from Sassuolo in the summer.The Turkish starlet is rising to prominence in Turin this season, starting the last four games in a row under Maurizio Sarri, n you get it you’re going to have to score. He was happy as long as he had two touchdowns a game. So in Pop Warner he would average about 20 touchdowns a season in a 12 to 14 game season depending on whether his team made it to the ‘Super Bowl.'”

That phrase led to a ritual developed by his parents to keep their son’s mindset in the right place before every game thereafter.

“The night before games we would try to come up with a new slogan for him for that game the next day,” said Robert Woods Jr., who played his college football at Grambling. “And if we didn’t do it he’d ask for the new saying for that game. So we’d try to give him a confident quote to motivate him for the game.”

“Being a Christian family we would make use of faith-based quotes as well,” said his mother. “It helps keep him focused and uplifted. He looks for that text message from us even now and the day of the game we always text him in the morning and remind him to have fun.”

Goal setting was encouraged by Robert’s parents. While Woods was clearly self-motivated, Robert and Sharon Woods wanted to ensure their son’s energies had the proper direction. Hanging by the door in his room was a white marker board. On it were his goals as he got ready to begin high school.

“The board was right by my door so when I’d leave my room I’d see it every day,” said Woods. “So I’d write my goals down for the season and I had my GPA up there. I wrote down everything I wanted. Then I would write under it how I was going to accomplish those goals. Then I’d cross them off as I achieved them and write new ones down.”

Woods chose to attend Serra high school, which had a small enrollment of just 600 kids. It wouldn’t put Robert on as big a stage as some of the larger area high schools, but his mind was made up two years prior when his older sister chose to attend high school there.

Unfortunately the siblings only got to spend one semester at the school together because Olivia soon became too sick to attend school. Robert, who knew how much his sister enjoyed the social scene at Serra, would report to her every day as soon as he got home from school.

“He would run up the stairs and go up to her room,” said Mrs. Woods. “The first thing he would do is go see her and tell her about his day. They were very close. That was a very emotional time for all of us, but especially for him.”

“She was really my best friend,” said Woods. “So when I’d come home I’d tell her about everything that was happening at school, who asked about her and events that were going on at school, how games went.

“It would put a smile on her face because she was missing it. I was her connection to that social life for her. She was probably the most popular person in our school. People to this day remember her birthday. She touched so many lives and everybody would come up to me and talk to me about her so I would come home and spread the word to her.”

Robert would talk to her about how his football season was going. As a freshman on JV he quarterbacked his team to an undefeated season, and then was called up to varsity at the end of the year. As a safety he intercepted a pass in a playoff loss, and returned it 90-plus yards for a touchdown.

Unfortunately Olivia’s condition wasn’t going as well as her brother’s high school football career. Forced to stay in the hospital for treatments the Woods’ family simply made Olivia’s hospital room their home.

“After school he would head to the hospital to spend the evenings with her,” said Mr. Woods.

“He did his homework in the hospital in the evenings,” said Mrs. Woods. “So he was a big part of the support system that we had there.”

“We were there so much every day, after school and after practice,” said Robert. “We would go right to the hospital and spend the night with her. It was like we were at home. The doctors would come and visit, but when they left we would talk, watch TV, play games. We weren’t really in the hospital in our minds. We were just trying to make it family time.”

Robert’s sister never heard about or saw her brother’s sophomore season when he made the Cal-Hi Sports All-State Sophomore team. She passed on April 19, 2007. Their high school was closed on the day of her funeral so the student body could pay their respects.

“We had a very large funeral for her,” said Mr. Woods. “There were about 1,500 people who attended. People from our places of work, family, friends and students. The doctors from the hospital, the nurses were there. They planted a tree for her at school.”

“She touched a lot of lives and I think she was just an amazing girl that I will never forget,” said Mrs. Woods. “Robert was very strong amazingly through her passing. He was very, very strong.”

Woods would go on to post eye-popping statistics in his junior and senior season at Serra. He rolled up more than 1,700 yards receiving with 19 touchdowns and two more touchdowns on returns on defense his junior year. By his senior season Woods was a USA Today All-First team member and a Parade All-American among dozens of other accolades.

He chose to attend USC with fellow high school teammate Marqise Lee, where he took quickly to the college game. In his sophomore season he had 111 catches for almost 1,300 yards and 15 touchdowns in a 13-game season.

Throughout his college career, Woods paid tribute to his sister by drawing a giant letter ‘O’ on his wrist tape with a black marker. Such a gesture would get Woods fined in the NFL, so instead during pre-game warmups he kneels and says a prayer.

“I always run down to the corner of the field and say a prayer and do a little ‘O’ up,” said Woods touching the tip of his thumb and index finger together to shape the letter ‘O’. “I go out there and play for her and play for my family. Some plays I feel like she’s right there with me making those plays. I’ve always felt like that since high school where I say to myself, ‘Yeah my sister was with me on that one.’ So she’s had a big role and a big impact on my game.”

Woods still feels his sister’s presence and he and his parents still talk about Olivia.

“No matter what she’s always my sister,” he said. “Yes, she passed away, but I’ll always remember her and always acknowledge her. I think it does make them proud that I play for her and still acknowledge her when I play.”

“Robert is a person who needs to know exactly what he has to do,” said Mrs. Woods. “He wants to know where he needs to improve and what he can do differently to accomplish that. He aims to please and always wants to do the right thing to get better. I think that coaches recognize that in him.”

In addition to taking his NFL career to the next level, Woods is now three classes shy of getting his degree from USC in public policy development with a focus in real estate. Next offseason he’ll officially graduate.

“I think she’d be very proud of me just because I’m in a good position being here in the NFL, but it doesn’t last forever,” said Woods of his sister. “I’m still working to get my degree and finish what I started. I know Olivia wanted to go to college and wanted a college degree and everything, but just to finish up what I started would be something she always preached herself. If you start something, finish it.”

All part of being a role model.

Posted on Leave a comment

West Ham interested in signing Steven N’Zonzi, confirms David Moyes

content_img

data-js=”article-bodd midfielder Paul Pogba.Despite the market now shut, AS says Zidane will have Real maintain contact with Pogba’s minders about a move to Madrid.Indeed, a January push for the World Cup winner is on the agenda and it’s significant the deadline fell wiy” data-insert-mobile-adslot>

Asked whether or not he and the West Ham owners have discussed January deals, Moyes replied: “I speak to them quite regularly. We’d like to add to the squad if we can and in the position in the table that we are we’ll need to.

“But finding the right players and looking for them is a bit different. Sometimes the ones you might want are not available at this time. When I say we know who the targets are, I think the club knows who we want to go for and positionally what we’d like to do.

“I think what changes is if you go for your target and you can’t get him, what do you do? You’ll have to look for another target. Hopefully we’ll have two or three in consideration.”

Despite having gone three games unbeaten, means West Ham are only a point above third-from-bottom Bournemouth ahead of their Boxing Day clash at the Vitality Stadium.

Both Andy Carroll and Javier Hernandez were used as substitutes against Newcastle, and Moyes has not ruleas spoken about the promotion of Oskar Buur into the first team squad.As Wolves prepare for their Europa League round of 16 clash against Espanyol, Nuno has given a chance to another youngster.It is not the first time the Portuguese manager has trustd out one of the strikers starting at Bournemouth.

“Up until Newcastle, the players have been playing well and showing what they can do. When that happens you reward them and keep playing them and I don’t think anybody can question that.

“But I do know what Andy Carroll and Chicharito’s qualities are. I think the way the team has been set up has nsists his commitment is total.Asked if he has had offers to leave during his time as manager, Pochettino said: “Yes, plenty. From everywhere. Daniel [Levy] knows.”He added: “Daniel knows very well our commitment to the club is massive. It is more thbeen better suited to the quicker boys playing up front. There will be other occasions when have to change the team and the set-up will suit Andy or Chicharito at different times.”

Posted on Leave a comment

AP: Early NFL Draft entries announced

content_img

Keenan Allen, WR, California

Stedman Bailey, WR, West Virginia

Le’Veon Bell, RB, Michigan State

Gio Bernard, RB, North Carolina

Knile Davis, RB, Arkansas

Mike Edwards, DB, Hawaii

Johnathan Hankins, DT, Ohio State

Stefphon Jefferson, RB, Nevada

Joe Kruger, DE, Utah

Marcus Lattimore, RB, South Carolina

Corey Lemonier, DE, Auburn

Kevin Minter, LB, LSU

Justin Pugh, OT, Syracuse

Eric Reid, S, LSU

Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State

Da’Rick Rogers, WR, Tennessee Tech

Logan Ryan, CB, Rutgers

Akeem Spence, Daffled by Atletico Madrid’s negative tactics at Anfield on Wednesday.It paid off for Diego Simeone as his side knocked out the Champions League holders with a 3-2 victory.And Klopp was clearly annoyed with the opposdate Dominic Calvert-Lewin.The 22-year-old striker has scored three goals in his last two matches, with reports claiming Manchester United are now interested in his services.Sigurdsson said: “It’s obviously very important for Dom to be scoring goals. eal to sign Bruno Fernandes from Sporting Lisbon.Fernandes will reportedly join United for a fee of €55m, with the amount potentially reaching €80m if add-ons are met.”We’ve agreed with the club now, so hopefully we can announce it very soon thaition’s tactics when speaking afterT, Illinois

Bjoern Werner, DE, Florida State

Posted on Leave a comment

Army vs. Navy Game: Orlando aiming to serve as host city for annual college football rivalry

content_img

The annual meeting between and is one of ‘s finest traditions, and while the game has mid-Atlantic and northeastern roots with the two academies, there is hope that “America’s Game” will Juventus attacker Douglas Costa expects a tougher battle to win the Scudetto next season.Under new coach Maurizio Sarri, Juve are going for nine in a row.“Each year Serie A gets more difficult,” he said.“With Antonio Conte at Inter and Carlo Ancelotti at Napoli, next season will be even tougher, but we’ll do our best to improve too, especially in the Champions League, which is our objective.”make its way down the coast for a more tropical location in the future. 

Florida Citrus Sports, the organization responsible for hosting the Camping World Kickoff Classic, the Camping World Bowl and the Citrus Bowl in Orlando, has been aggressive in securing high-profile neutral-site matchups since the completion of the renovations to Camping World Stadium in 2015. Florida Citrus Sports CEO Steve Hogan said earlier this month that the group hopes to be included in the next round of bidding when the two schools look to secure its host sites for 2023-28. 

“When you think of events, I love that Orlando can have the opportunity to be a part of something that’s special,” . “The Army-Navy game would be an experience for people in Central Florida and the people who have traditionally attended the game in Philadelphia or Baltimore.” 

According to Hogan, Orlando was one of the cities included in the last bidding window for Army-Navy but scheduling conflicts prevented their ability to contend for the game. The Orlando area is already a hotbed for football during the month of December, not to mention the tourism advantages of planning a weekend getaway in Florida as opposed to somewhere further north. 

“It drew my eyes to that’s something now based on the calendar and how it fits with tourism here in this community, that you’ve got to circle hard and be aggressive to go pursue and I think we will,” Hogan said.  

In total, there have been 17 different venues in six different states that have hosted the Army-Navy game throuhis season.James has scored three goals in his first four appearances for United, and has impressed with his pace and his direct play.”I don’t think they [United] expected what they have got from Daniel James so early on in his Manchester United careghout its history, but the game hhance.For the 2-2 draw with Sheffield United, Tomori was one of three Chelsea Academy graduates who started the game, alongside Mason Mount and two-goal Tammy Abraham, while Billy Gilmour also made his first appearance late on as a substitute.”I’m heas never made its way to the southeastern United States. They’ve played in Chicago’s Soldier Field and even in California at the Rose Bowl, but on the east coast, the most-southern location has been Landover, Maryland. 

Posted on Leave a comment

What makes going to a Texas college football game in Austin a unique game-day experience

content_img

If there is one thing Texans are known to be passionate about it’s college football. They say everything is bigger in  and that includes the football fandom and the love for the the Longhorns. Going to a UT game means being witness to some of the most enthusiastic fans in . 

Decked out in burnt orange, the fans flood into 100,119-seat Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium in Austin, Texas, to cheer on their Longhorns. One major element that separates attending a game over watching it on television is being able to participate in singing the “The Eyes of Texas”, the school’s spirit song. 

The fans also participate in a call and response that rumbles through the stadium where one side of the crowd chants “Texas” and the other yells back “fight.” Cowboy hats and the iconic “Hook Em” hand symbol are seen everywhere in the crowd of excited game-goers. 

In true Texas fashion, Bevo, a real life Texas longhorn steer, makes his way onto the field in front of the electhrough at Barcelona.The winger has been a big revelation this season and admits he had lucrative offers to leave Barca at 16.Perez told Radio Catalunya: “There are people who are guided more by money, I respect all decisions, but I always say that Itric crowd each game. The profile of the animal’s head is where the hand symbol and “Hook ’em Horns” saying comes from.

When their live mascot is absent their other mascot “Hook ‘Em” named very appropriately for the team, can be found around the stadium encouraging fans to show off their Texas pride.  

Austin is a city rich with music, good food and of course, footbalardi is successfully rebuilding his relationship with the Inter Milan locker room, it has been revealed.The striker angered many senior teammates over the way he refused to take part in training for over a month after being sacked as captain in Februl. Most people who visit the city find themselves heading to Sixth Street, the pedestrian friendly hub of the city that features many restaurants and bars with live music. . 

From the momentseille midfielder Maxime López has revealed an approach from Barcelona.Lopez admits Barca were in contact two years ago.”In the summer of 2017, the sports director of Barça ( Robert Fernández) spoke with my agent, who said there was interest in th you arrive in Austin to the end of the game, the entire experience is filled with traditions and entertainment. 

Posted on Leave a comment

College Football DFS for August 24, 2019: Best DraftKings, FanDuel daily Fantasy CFB picks, lineups

content_img

The and Miami Hurricanes will kick off the 2019 season on Saturday at Camping World Stadium in Orlando at 7 p.m. ET. It’s a bitter in-state rivalry of national significance with Florida ranked No. 8 in the AP Poll and Miami entering its first season under head coach Manny Diaz. But while college football DFS players might have some interest in Miami RB , Florida WR and all the other skilew the 2019-20 European Women’s Champions League Qualification Round—looking at Groups 1-5 this week and Groups 6-10 next week.Early August to some means the tail end of summer but to football fanatics it always means the start to the new Women’s Cl players in that game, the primary focus of college football DFS tournaments and cash games on FanDuel and DraftKings for opening night will be the players in vs. at 10:30 p.m. ET. That game has a whopping total of 74 points with prolific offenses led by Arizona’s and Hawaii’s at quarterback. But before you make your CFB DFS picks for Saturday, be sure to check out the college football DFS lineups, advice and strategy from DFS pro Mike McClure,wcastle manager Steve Bruce has called for patience from the club’s fans over their new signings.Speaking before Wednesday’s League Cup clash with Leicester City, Bruce said the likes of Joelinton and Jetro Willems, Allan Saint-Maximin and Emil Kraft who has won almost $2 million in his career. 

McClure has won nearly $2 million iVignato, per journalist Nicholo Schira.The Italian sports journalist, who works for Gazzetta dello Sport, believes the midfielder is a key target for the Blues.The 19-year-old would fit boss Frank Lampard’s policy of attracting younger players to then his career as a DFS professional, and he uses a powerful prediction model that simulates every snap of every game, taking factors such as matchups, statistical trends and injuries into account. This allows him to find the best DFS values and create optimal lineups for sites like DraftKings and FanDuel that he shares only with members at SportsLine.

In last year’s College Football Playoff National Championship, McClure was all over quarterback . The result: Lawrence capped his true freshman season with 347 yards and three touchdowns in a title game romp over , and anybody who had him in their lineup was well on the way to a profitable day. Now, he’s set his sights on the opening Saturday of college football on August 24.

For College Football Kickoff Weekend, we can tell you McClure is high on Arizona running back J.J. Taylor. Tate was getting Heisman buzz entering 2018, but when an ankle injury took away the quarterback’s ability to attack defenses with his legs, it was Taylor who became the central focus of the offense in 2018.

Taylor ran for 1,434 yards and six touchdowns while adding 16 catches for 133 yards. He went for 284 yards and two touchdowns in a win over , 212 yards and two scores in a win over and 192 yards in a win over . So you can be sure that he’ll be a heavy part of the formula on Saturday in Hawaii, making him a must-roster in college football DFS because of the enormous numbers he’s capable of putting up.

Part of McClure’s optimal CFB DFS strategy includes rostering Hawaii wide receiver ($9,300 on FanDuel and $6,000 on DraftKings), who made 51 catches for 865 yards and nine touchdowns last season. Ward burst onto the national radar with a 161-yard, two-touchdown performance against in Week 2 of last season and then closed out the regular season strong with 11 catches for 229 yards and three touchdowns in his final two games.

McDonald is back this season and will have an unmistakable chemistry with Ward. With last year’s leading receiver John Ursua gone, so look for McDonald to look Ward’s way even more often this season. Arizona gave up 269.5 yards passing per game last season and Ward could be in for a big night if the Wildcats continue to struggle in that department.

McClure is also targeting a player capable of putting up tournament-winning numbers because of a dream matchup on Saturday. Picking him could be the difference between winning your college football DFS tournaments and cash games or going home with nothing. 

Posted on Leave a comment

Booze, transfers among eight discussion points at the 2019 SEC spring meetings

content_img

On a spit of white sand beach, the SEC will decide the current and future state of the league. In other words, it’s time for the annual spring meetings in Destin, Florida.

The league conducts these meetings at resort on the Florida Panhandle with a view of the Gulf of Mexico. Those meetings begin formally on Tuesday with an ocean breeze and a full agenda. Focus, boys and girls, paradise can wait until the end of business hours.

Here are eight things you should keep an eye on as the SEC spring meetings go down this week in Destin.

Hard liners gasped a little when the NCAA, two weeks ago, . The moving target that is amateurism will be a key discussion point in Destin. The basic argument is whether student-athletes — like their Olympic counterparts — can profit from their basic sense of self.

The Olympics decided 30 years ago that its athletes could still be considered amateurs despite allowing them to do commercials. Those ratings-grabbing figure skaters, gymnasts and skiers didn’t turn off a soul because they appeared in an airline commercial.

What does that look like in the college space? Think of Tua Tagovailoa doing a local car commercial or DeAndre Swift getting a little somethin’, somethin’ for his autograph. You’d better believe the SEC will begin significant discussions on what it all means. This is a league that lost its collective mind in 2015 when cost of attendance was implemented. Back then, the concern was, God forbid, Auburn players get $100 more per month than their Alabama counterparts — or vice versa.

will no doubt hang over the meetings. Bramblett and his wife were killed in a car accident over the weekend, leaving a school and a conference in mourning. Bramblett had been the football “Voice of the Tigers” since 2003. He leaves behind two wonderful children, Shelby and Joshua. There have been many great voices of SEC football. Their shared contribution is to those who have no other way to follow their teams except through those unique voices. We should never forget Bramblett’s famous call of the Pick Six.

The SEC West is apparently the place to be for administrators, too. Scott Woodward and Ross Bjork will be at their first SEC meetings since changing jobs within the West Division. Woodward, a New Orleans native, came “home” to LSU from Texas A&M. On Friday, Bjork left Ole Miss — where he had been for eight years — to take the opening at TAMU. For those of you scoring at home, that leaves the latest SEC West opening at Ole Miss.

If it’s all about money — and frequently it is all about money — the SEC has some work to do. The Big Ten earlier this month announced a 48 percent increase in revenue, making the Larter City to “achieve something fantastic”.The Foxes, who were surprise champions under Claudio Ranieri in 2015-16, are third with Brendan Rodgers in charge.”Leicester have a spine of the team that is experienced – in Jonny Evans, Jamie Vardy and Kaspge 14 the richest conference in history — by far. This means a lot to the SEC, if only from a pride standpoint. The two leagues have separated themselves from the rest of college sports in terms of money … and championships. The leagues have combined for 10 of the last 13 football national titles. (OK, the SEC has nine of those.)

It was 10 years ago that Nick Saban won his first national championship at Alabama. That started a run of five titles in a decade. Is 2019, will it be a continuation of the same, or was the Clemson game a sign of things to come?

Among coaches, the 7-month-old . It isn’t going away, but that won’t stop the league’s coaches from weighing in. A couple of years ago, anticipating more transfer freedom, Saban said, “Am I going to have to change the way I coach?” The answer is the same for all coaches: Yeah, maybe. At least check 106 SEC football players had put their name in the portal. That’s an average of more than 7.5 per school.

Schools long ago began serving alcohol at sporting events nationwide. The total now stands at approximately 55 FBS schools that serve alcohol at games. The SEC remains an outlier. It is the only major conference that has a policy against alcohol sales to the general public. Social mores have loosened. The NCAA now allows drinkage at its championship events. The SEC — in the heart of the Bible Belt — has been slow to change, but truths have emerged.

Alcohol is a significant revenue source that can be controlled. Former West Virginia AD Oliver Luck proved it when he argued that limiting beer and wine inside the stadium (two drinks per visit) were better than fans binge-drinking at halftime. The West Virginia model is 8 years old. (Security officials actually used to have a “Code Vomit” to identify out-of-control drinking in the stands before it was regulated.)  The SEC’s no-booze policy dates back to at least 1978, according to Sports Illustrated. There will be significant discussion this week in Destin about opening up the spigots. Time for a toast?

, the SEC continued its image makeover. If nothinproblems between Lionel Messi and Antoine Griezmann.It’s been suggested Messi doesn’t get along with the arrival from Atletico Madrid.But Pique says: “Leo and Grizzi get along well, it’s the same for Dembélé or before with Pedro… “It’s true that g else, the league will celebrate its hoops  success in Destin. Having one-quarter of the Sweet 16 hadn’t happened in the SEC in 22 years. Auburn made a Cinderella run to the Final Four.

The general upgrade in basketball fortunes means more pressure to win. Six of the 14 SEC schools have changed coaches in the last two seasons — four in the last couple of months. Alabama snagged up-and-comer Nate Oates from Buffalo. Veteran (and Nevada) coach Eric Musselman will make his Power Five debut at Arkansas. Buzz Williams left Virginia Tech for Texas A&M. Jerry Stackhouse takes over at Vanderbilt after the surprising firing of Bryce Drew.

That’s not counting Will Wade, wh goalkeeper David Seaman is backing Nice coach Patrick Vieira for the Gunners job.Arsenal are starting their search for a new manager for only the second time in 23 years after sacking Unai Emery.And ex-Gunners captain Vieira, now manager of Nice, coo snagged an SEC title (and lots of FBI attention) in his second year at LSU. Kentucky remains the team to beat, but it definitely has some competition. 

Posted on Leave a comment

Kyler Murray playing for Oklahoma is equal parts possibility and hypocrisy from NCAA

content_img

quarterback will be making close to $5 million this year. That’s a fact, and perhaps a record for the Sooners’ . Somehow, the pillars of amateurism haven’t collapsed just yet.

You know, the pillars that say money is the root of all evil in college athletics, unless it is being made by those who control college athletics.

The pillars that hold up the NCAA’s amateur ideal. The disparate ideals that get a kid suspended taking a lunch from a booster, but allow that same millionaire to win a Heisman Trophy.

The pillars that prop up the NCAA’s indefensible version of amateurism.

The irony of Murray being an amateur college quarterback and a professional baseball outfielder at the same time is rife with equal parts possibility and hypocrisy.

Murray was by the Oakland Athletics. In the midst of competing for the starting quarterback job at Oklahoma, Murray signed his baseball contract on Friday. As a surprise top-10 pick, he will play one more season of before playing baseball for pay.

NCAA rules allow professionals in one sport to receive compensation while retaining college eligibility in another. Nothing new there except to question Oakland’s wisdom in allowing its top pick to put his body and baseball career at risk for one more season under center.

The likes of John Elway and have played pro baseball and college football at the same time, but perhaps never at this powerful of a program, at college football’s most important position or for this much money.

Murray signed for a reported $4.7 million, took batting practice with the A’s then declared, “Right now, it’s about getting ready to go win a [football] national championship.”

Just so as the Sooners know who’s paying for the after party.

Whether Murray wins the starting job at Oklahoma is sort of irrelevant. It’s what he represents. Whatever money he gets, he has earned. It’s that his teammates pretty much can’t (legally) earn a dime.

Aside from the head coaches and perhaps a coordinator or two, Murray will be the highest paid person on the field at his games this fall.

He will be a highly-compensated symbol for a system that has never been more under attack. How do you justify not paying players something further when a defensive coordinator ( Dave Aranda) is making more than 80 head coaches ($2.5 million)?

How do you deny them something more when last year it was revealed the .

“The optics are what the writers make of them,” Delany said smugly.

How is a scholarship enough when 29 NCAA football players have died — mostly in workouts — since 2000?

The walls are closing in on the NCAA. The administrators who continue to defend the system just have to know where they escape hatch is.

It’s been less than four years since a district court judge found the NCAA was in violation of anti-trust laws in the landmark O’Bannon trial. It seems inevitable that sooner or later players are going to be able to earn something from their name, image and likeness.

The argument against is practically neanderthal. president Harris Pastides testified in the O’Bannon case that payments “would create a wedge between those student athletes who receive the funds and those who don’t.”

In the same case, NCAA president Mark Emmert said payments would “certainly impact the way other student-athletes perceive them.”

The suits seem to be actually suggesting that paying players would divide a locker room. How preposterous.

In the case of Oklahoma, Murray might be the best chance the Sooners have of returning to the College Football Playoff. That’s not a locker room poison, that’s hope for life after .

It has come to this: Murray’s baseball salary allowed by the NCAA is literally the NCAA’s argument for corruption.

“Google the NCAA’s definition of amateurism,” said Gerald Gurney, University of Oklahoma assistant professor and NCAA reformer. “Essentially it says athletes should not be paid because they need to concentrate on schoolwork. They can’t juggle two balls at the sameGreenwood.The Sun says United are not planning on rewarding Greenwood with a new deal after his first-team breakthrough.Greenwood, 17, made four appearances for United last term and started against Cardiff on the final day.Ole Gunnar Solskjaer admitt time. That’s asinine and ridiculous.”

At first, it might seem the root of this discussion is NCAA rules allow an athlete to turn pro in one sport and retain amateur eligibility in another.

But the real argument is how much the public and fans can stomach any college athlete being paid before they’re not considered college (thus, amateur) athletes.

Apparently, quite a bit.

Cost of attendance provides players between $5,000 and $10,000 per year just for being … athletes.Bowl gifts — typically capped at $550 — are nothing more than rewards for playing football. Men’s and women’s Final Four participants have their own gift suites to enjoy. Sports Business Daily reported basketball players who win their regular-season conference, conference tournament and .All three military academies (, , ) routinely pay salaries to cadets in service to the country.Olympic stipends allowed by the NCAA range from the modest to the extravagant. swimmer for his home country of Singapore for winning Ole a new hero in Bruno Fernandes.The Portuguese, signed from Sporting Lisbon last month, scored his first goal for United in Sunday’s 3-0 win over Watford at Old Trafford. And Crouch believes Fernandes’ bravado is exactly what the Red Devils have beenympic gold.Schools are allowed to pay five-figure insurance premiums of their prospects.One anonymous coach told me last year a player at  legally over the course of his career.

Most of these are not benefits allowed to the normal student. Just don’t ask the NCAA what a normal student is.

No one is going to deny that Murray deserves every penny he can get from the A’s. It’s only because he plays a different sport that he is not considered corrupted by NCAA standards.

“It’s very confusing,” Kyle Parker said.

Parker might be the best and most recent comparison to Murray. The former quarterback played football after getting a $1.4 million bonus with the in 2010.

After six years spent mostly in the minors, he returned to Clemson in 2017 to complete his degree.

“It’s leaning more toward the athlete,” Parker said, “but it’s still completely lopsided how much money college athletes make and [how much schools] generate off of amateur [athletes].”

In a way, it’s not a matter of paying players, it’s about semantics. What one man calls improper compensation, another calls amateurism.

“I have no issue with Kyler Murray at all,” Gurney said. “This is a demonstration of the NCAA’s inconsistent and ridiculous definition of amateurism.”

Parker said he was offered endorsements as a baseball player but th the Azzurri.“My relationship with Naples is normal,” he told Otto Channel.“I spend a lot of time outside the city, and when I return in the evening the only thing I enjoy in Naples is a restaurant or pizzeria.“This city could be nicer with scouldn’t accept them because he was still playing college football.

The same standard would apply to Murray.

“Any kind of advertising that you would have cashed in on playing in a big league city, you have to decline,” Parker said.

More absurdity. As a football player, Murray cannot accept so much as a free burger from a booster. As a baseball player, he has enough money to buy his entire offensive line a steak dinner. I’m getting headaches just writing about it.

For 50 years, until 1956, the NCAA essentially banned players from getting anything in outside compensation.

Now? Some players are sending cash home because of the myriad ways they can get money.

Some of the progress is common sense. Some of it reflects increasing pressure from the courts. All of it is way overdue.

Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby perhaps provided the most insight. He told the reform-minded Knight Commission college athletes are neither pros nor amateurs.

“I think it’s a completely different genre of his own,” Bowlsby said. “It doesn’t exist anywhere else in the world …”

Maybe that’s the biggest problem. Kyler Murray isn’t the outlier. The system is.

Posted on Leave a comment

College Football Playoff: Five keys to Georgia winning the championship

content_img

ATLANTA — The No. 3 have a chance to win their first national championship since 1980 on Monday night in Mercedes-Benz Stadium, when they take on No. 4 in the Playoff National Championship. 

Led by second-year coach Kirby Smart and a punishing running game featuring seniors and , the Bulldogs topped No. 2 52-48 in double overtime in the Rose Bowl last Monday to earn a trip to their home state to take on the Crimson Tide for all the marbles.

What are the five keys for the Bulldogs?

A common theme this week has been criticism of a Georgia defense that gave up 531 yards to the Sooners in the national semifinal. Sure, that’s a big number, but that number doesn’t tell the whole story. The real story is that Georgia’s defense — specifically its defensive front — won that game by generating five straight stops to open the second half.

The Rose Bowl was an anomaly, and more proof that defense doesn’t win championships, “just enough” defense does. “Just enough” is a moving target based on your own offense, your opponent and the style of the game.

Georgia needs to find just enough against the Tide to get it done, and it starts with Julien Rochester, , , and that fast and physical defensive front seven.

That looks like more of a challenge this week than it did over the holiday season, because Alabama’s offensive line flat-out owned in its Sugar Bowl win.

“Once we got beat by , we were ‘the worst offensive line in the nation,’ yada, yada, yada, and all this crap,” center said. “We really wanted to make a statement and prove that we deserve to be here, and I think we did that tonight.”

Was that the anomaly, or a sign that “old school” Alabama football is back? 

If Georgia can prove that it was the exception, they’ll leave Mercedes-Benz Stadium as national champs.

It’s one thing to win the battle in the trenches. But even if Georgia’s defense does that, it still has to contain electric dual-threat quarterback Jalen Hurts.

What did we learn last week about Georgia’s approach to mobile quarterbacks? They need to come right at them. That’s exactly what happened in the second half when harge because of a poor start to the season.Milan are 13th in Serie A, three points above the relegation zone, after three wins in their first seven games.Giampaolo, 52, succeeded Gennaro Gattuso in June after the former Italy midfielder quit becausethe Bulldogs abandoned their quest to contain Sooner quarterback Oklahoma quarterback , and came right at the Heisman Trophy winner. That is going to put a lot of pressure on Smith and the rest of the talented linebacking corps to get him down when they have the chance.

“I think he’s a heck of an athlete, [he] can beat you on the ground, and he has a pretty solid arm, as well, to give his receivers a chance to make a play on the ball in the air,” Smith said.

The last part of that quote is still up for debate, and the best way to find out if it’s true or not is to get right in Hurts’ face when he rolls out. Don’t give him time to look downfield. Make sure he has to make quick decisions in the passing game.

Hurts hasn’t made many mistakes this year, but he also hasn’t faced as many defenses with the speed of the Bulldogs.

A lot of people will say that Georgia has to establish the running game in order to have a chance against Alabama’s defense. 

That’s just not true.

Of course, getting Chubb and Michel going on the ground would be beneficial and certainly will be Plan A –it has been Georgia’s M.O. all year. But we saw true freshman quarterback lead his team to the win in the Rose Bowl — a game in which he led the game-tying drive at the end of regulation with clutch throw after clutch throw. 

You can’t script a bigger moment, and Fromm thrived in it.

No, it isn’t the running game that needs to get going. That calm mindset that didn’t send the Bulldogs into panic mode when they were down 31-14 in the second quarter and brought out the best of Fromm when they were down seven with under five minutes to play is what has to stay with the Bulldogs throughout the entire 60 minutes of the title game.

And I do mean “entire.”

Alabama’s defense saw an inch when it forced Clemson quarterback to throw a pick to defensive lineman to , and it took a mile. That mile included a pass from Hurts to Payne and a pick six by linebacker on the very next play from scrimmage. 

Br Celtic midfielder Nir Bitton.The Sun says Burnley are lining up a cut-price £1million deal for Bitton.Dyche is a keen admirer of Bitton and wants to try to sign him in January to boost his options in a number of areas.The versatile 28-year-old, whlood was in the water, the the Tide swarmed like sharks.

Georgia is the more complete team. It proved in the Rose Bowl that it can win games outside of its comfort zone, as long as it doesn’t hurt itself.

Don’t get cut.

We saw Georgia play and beat Oklahoma playing the Sooners’ brand of point-per-minute football. If the situations presents itself to force Alabama into a similar situation, do it.

That means Smart and his staff need to live by one simple mantra: Don’t let up.

It can be argued — I think rather successfully — that Oklahoma coach Lincoln Riley made a poor decision going conservative in overtime in the Rose Bowl loss to the Bulldogs. Smart should remember that, and make sure his foot stays on the gas for as long as possible.

That means blitzes, play-action passes and enough creativity on both sides of the ball to make sure the Bulldogs don’t get complacent and don’t give Alabama any window to crawl back in the game if the Bulldogs do get a lead.

After all, we saw Alabama dominate Clemson playing Alabama football. We saw Georgia top Oklahoma playing Oklahoma football.

Smart and the Bulldogs want to play old-school, smash-mouth football too. That has been and always will be Plan A. But they also know that their Plan B works better than Alabama’s.

 Alabama lost linebacker Anferenee Jennings late in the Sugar Bowl to a knee injury, after Jennings had a monster day against Clemson. That’s the latest in a long line of linebacker injurieson have agreed a fee for Tanguy Ndombele.The London Evening Standard says Spurs have agreed to pay an initial €62million (£55.45m), while the overall deal could rise to over £63m due to future incentives.The deal will smash Tottenham’s club-recor for the Crimson Tide that also includes middle linebackers and .

Georgia needs to test that depth and discipline, and the best way to do it is with tempo.

We’ve seen Georgia go up-tempo a lot this year in big situations, including the SEC Championship Game win over Auburn. They don’t always snap it quickly, but they do get to the line in a hurry, often to prevent defenses from substituting. Simply getting to the line quickly will stress middle linebacker Mack Wilson — who calls the signals in place of Hamilton and Moses — and simply running plays will stress the depth of the defensive-minded Crimson Tide.

Posted on Leave a comment

WATCH: Baker Mayfield tears up, gets emotional talking Oklahoma punishment

content_img

The punitive response to obscene gesture to ‘ players during Saturday’s win was announced by head coach Lincoln Riley on Monday. Mayfield, a two-time Heisman Trophy finalist and the frontrunner to win the award with two weeks left to play in 2017, will not start against in the regular season finale. He is still expected to play, but . 

Having a captaincy removed is a punishment that has a varying severity depend clear at the top of the table, have started a trend of scoring late goals to win games this season.And Klopp insists the never-say-die attitude is something the squad pride themselves on.”How important is the mennchester City but new boss Carlo Ancelotti has told his money men to make sure he stays.And so Holgate, 23, signed as a kid from Barnsley, is in for a lucrative new deal to bring him more into line with what his team-mates earn.Holgate is on a lower tal side in football? It’s all, if yoing on the player, program and timing. That part on to the Chelsea squad.The German manager was asked whether Frank Lampard’s team would be a title threat in the coming season.Many are writing off Chelsea due to their transfer ban.However, Klopp believes that with players such as Abraham added to tof the punishment struck a nerve with Mayfield, considering that Saturday’s game against the Mountaineers is Senior Day in Norman. 

Mayfield spoke about the punishment after Monday’s practice and got emotional not about losing his starting job, but about not being a team captain for the final home game of his college career. 

“Not being a team captain is so much more,” Mayfield said. “It would be hard if it were a regular game or not, but it being my last one here ever, it means a lot more. It’s going to be tough, because Saturday was going to be — without all of this — an emotional one. It’s going to be hard to handle. It’s going to be hard.” 

Check out video above.

Posted on Leave a comment

Cover 3: Get to know some of the big name coordinators primed for top coaching jobs

content_img

This week’s Cover 3 spans all things college football digs into, including the coordinators that are most appealing as the coaching carousel picks up steam, the puzzling trend going on at Texas and the college football’s big loss over the weekend that few noticed.

1. The next coaches among coordinators

As the coaching carousel begins to spin in earnest, the obvious names that will be tossed around as candidates for the big jobs are going to be sitting Power Five head coaches or up-and-comers from the Group of Five ranks. But all over the country, whether it is Lincoln Riley at Oklahoma, Kirby Smart at Georgia, Scott Frost at UCF or even Will Muschamp at South Carolina, guys that were hired from coordinator roles are among the biggest breakthrough stars in 2017.

With a cycle approaching that features a relatively limited inventory of rising Group of Five coaches, as well as realistic scenarios that see jobs like UCLA, Arkansas, Nebraska and Texas A&M joining current openings at Florida, Tennessee and Ole Miss, it’s time to get to know some of the nation’s best coaching candidates from the coordinator ranks.

Ready for big timeJoe Moorhead, Penn State offensive coordinator

He has head coaching experience. He took a Fordham team that was 1-10 before his arrival to 12-2 in his second year and he ended his four-year tenure with three straight FCS playoff performances. Moorhead has turned Penn State’s offense from listless to one of the most explosive in and he’s only 44, just two years older than the heavily coveted Scott Frost.

Brent Venables, Clemson defensive coordinator

One of the nation’s highest paid coordinators, Venables only seems interested in leaving for the perfect fit. He’s an energetic coach, a dogged recruiter and has reloaded to produce one of the nation’s best defenses regularly despite hemorrhaging talent every spring.

Greg Schiano, Ohio State defensive coordinator

This is the guy that had Rutgers ranked seventh in the nation at one point. His struggles as the head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have overshadowed what was a remarkable run in Piscataway, New Jersey.

On the cuspJeremy Pruitt, Alabama defensive coordinator

One of the best recruiters in the country, Pruitt has been a defensive coordinator for three years and has appeared in two national title games during that time, winning one. He’s also learned from the best, coaching under Nick Saban, Mark Richt and Jimbo Fisher.

Jonathan Smith, Washington offensive coordinator

A mainstay on Chris Petersen’s staff since 2012, Smith played at Oregon State, was a graduate assistant at Oregon State and has developed the kind of offensive resume that could make him a very attractive candidate in Corvallis.

Mike Bloomgren, Stanford offensive coordinator

Bloomgren has regularly produced some of college football’s best offensive lines at Stanford and he has proven that he can recruit with anyone in the country as well. Given Stanford’s national approach to recruiting and his background (born and raised in Tallahassee, graduate assistant at Alabama), Bloomgren would be adaptable in any region.

Manny Diaz, Miami defensive coordinator

A successful defensive coordinator at just about every stop in his career, Diaz has taken some real ownership of the Miami resurgence and as the son of the former mayor of Miami, he’s got leadership in his blood.

Mike Yurcich, Oklahoma State offensive coordinator

Mike Gundy’s former offensive coordinators include successful head coaches like Larry Fedora, Dana Holgorsen and Todd Monken. Yurcich is putting up numbers that would make even that group blush.

Tee Martin, USC offensive coordinator

He’s already proven himself as one of the best recruiters in college football and Martin has taken well to the coordinator role. With a national championship at Tennessee, roots in Alabama and success out west, his profile is compelling on a number of fronts.

2. The Texas curse

Watching Diaz put together one of the best defenses in college football down at Miami isn’t surprising to anyone that has followed his career — unless perhaps you’re a Texas fan. Diaz was in Austin as the decline of the Longhorns kicked into gear. He took over the No. 9 defense in the country in yards per play allowed and in his three years there, Diaz’s defenses were ranked No. 9, No. 85 and No. 62 in the same category.

The tumble for a defense that had been No. 1 in the country only two years before he arrived made Diaz’s successful career prior at Middle Tennessee and Mississippi State look like false positives. Since his departure, it’s become clear that part of the support team of Barcelona youngster Ansu Fati.Marca says at the end of last season, Fati had to renew his contract but talks hit a brick wall. It was then the player’s father who contacted Rodrigo Messi, from which point forward he lookeit was Texas that was the fallacy. Diaz’s defenses at Louisiana Tech, Mississippi State and Miami in next three seasons all improved dramatically under his watch.

Remarkably, Diaz isn’t alone. He was just the first of a lengthening line of bright young coaches who are really good at things that translate everywhere except in Austin. Charlie Strong came to Texas with the chops to fix a floundering defense and he did … for one year. In the next two bowl-less seasons, Strong’s defenses looked awful and incompetent. Yet, in his new job at USF, Strong is once again fielding one of the best defensive units in the country.

Tom Herman isn’t immune from the curse either. He’s got Texas looking competitive in a tough Big 12 and is still in danger of missing a bowl game for the third straight season because his offense is failing him. His offensive acumen has been undeniable at every stop in his career until now, and he has the job largely because of what his offenses did at both Ohio State and Houston.

So what’s missing? For Diaz, perhaps it was just a maield for last night’s Champions League defeat at Atletico Madrid.Liverpool lost 1-0 in the Spanish capital on Tuesday night and play the Champions League last-16 second leg next month at Anfield. “Well it was a really frustrating night for Liverpool,tter of time. The year after he left, Texas shot right back up to the top 10 defensively under Strong and perhaps the jump would have been similar under Diaz.

For Strong and Herman, we may be looking at head coaches spread too thin.

In their previous head coaching positions, the demands on the head coach are incomparable to the obligations required at Texas. Strong is afforded much more time to gameplan and prepare at Louisville and USF than he was at Texas. The same can be said for Herman at Houston. Vance Joseph didn’t cut it under Strong and Tim Beck under Herman hasn’t yet proven up to the task.

Herman seems to have the arrow pointed up at Texas and my hunch is that offense gets corrected soon, but the phenomena offers a lesson to some otho Manchester United.United paid £46.5m plus add-ons for Fernandes but Varandas admitted they were nearly forced them to take a lower offer from Tottenham.“At the end of June, we had become aware that we were going to sell Bruno,” he told Record.”Wer schools on the verge of major hires. Florida and Tennessee are schools with rabid fan bases to appease and countless asks of a head coach. In those environments, you’d better be confident not only in the hire, but in the guys coming with him if you want a quick fix.

3. College football took a hit this weekend

Very few casual football fans around the country know the name Tony Perry. He’s not a big money coach or a NFL millionaire, but a lot of big money coaches and NFL millionaires have Tony Perry plugged into their phone. If you plan on recruiting Fresno, California, or if you were a kid trying to get out of Fresno, you needed to know “TP.”

Over the weekend, Perry passed away. He was an assistant coach at Edison High School and he was a mentor to and an advocate for countless football players in the greater Fresno area.

There’s often a stigma attached to guys like Perry. For a lot players, he was the dreaded “third party” that the NCAA works so hard to restrict. But Perry was an example of the positive impact a third party “mentor” can have on a player. He’s often the guy taking prospects to camps or 7-on-7 events in the offseason, living in smelly vans and cheap hotels with a bunch of rowdy teens and pounding the phones to alert college coaches to the kids that deserve an opportunity. If TP called, I’d know that I had better set aside at least 20 minutes of phone time in front of me, hearing about his latest crop.

Guys that Perry touched include Miami Dolphins safety T.J. McDonald, Pittsburgh Steelers safety Robert Golden, Utah true freshman starting corner Jaylon Johnson and Oklahoma linebacker Caleb Kelly.

This is no broad defense of third-party actors in the college football recruiting process. But it’s a defense of the good ones. Tony Perry was a good one and for a lot of guys that needed him, Tony Perry was there. College football is worse off for losing him. 

Posted on Leave a comment

Dante Pettis breaks NCAA record with ninth career punt return for a touchdown

content_img

Why anyone puts to wide receiver anymore is one of this world’s great mysteries. Still, teamsAlisson is frustrated with Liverpool conceding “stupid goals”.The Brazilian was helpless when Trezeguet found himself free inside the box to score Aston Villa’s opener on Sunday.The Reds eventually secured a dramatic late, but Alisson doesn’t want his team to put themselves in difficult positions by conceding poor goals.”It annoys me always when we concede,” Alisson said. “Stupid goals! When we concede that way, it annoys me and the team. “We always have a common goal to win the game and to keep a clean sheet. You are closer to the victory with a clean sheet and you always have a draw.”When you concede, the games become more difficult. We need to work better at that if we want to do great things.”He added: “We can do better in our concentration. Against Genk we conceded late on, so this annoyed me and the team. We need to keep our focus.”We need to learn from these moments to make sure it does not happen again.” do, which is a good thing for Pettis. 

It was a good thing for the Huskies, too, during SaturdInter Milan striker Lautaro Martinez has quickly been impressed by new teammate Romelu Lukaku.Lukaku has hit the ground running since his summer arrival from Manchester United. “He immediately adapted to the Coach’s ideas and the team’s style of play,” the 22-year-old told TyC Sports.“He’s a striker with incredible characteristics, he’s very powerful. “I was surprised by his sheer stature.”ay’s game against as Pettis took a 64-yard punt return to the house. It was his ninth career punt return for a score, breaking the NCAA record of eight previously set Wes Welker and Antonio Perkins.

For the record, imnasia La Plata as coach.The 59-year-old was only appointed in September and had improved their fortunes, winning three of his last five games in charge.But it was also reported Maradona would quit Gimnasia if president Gabriel Pellegrino did not stthe most punt returns in a single season is five. Pettis already has four on the year.