Buffalo Bison football
|4 - 6||1 - 4||3 - 2||.400||282||402|
|2013-09-06||vs||Cherokee||L||0 - 50|
|2013-09-13||@||Boise City||L||42 - 54|
|2013-09-20||@||Waynoka||L||20 - 42|
|2013-09-26||vs||Shattuck||L||8 - 52|
|2013-10-04||vs||Balko||L||8 - 54|
|2013-10-12||@||Goodwell||W||78 - 28|
|2013-10-17||vs||Sharon-Mutual||L||0 - 48|
|2013-10-25||@||Word of Life (Wichita)||W||46 - 36|
|2013-11-01||vs||Tyrone||W||36 - 26|
|2013-11-08||@||DC-Lamont||W||44 - 12|
|Player Name||Number||Year||Height||Weight||Position (main)|
|There are no players associated with this team.|
Buffalo football News
NewsOK articles about Buffalo football, or articles mentioning current or former Buffalo football players.
Buffalo High School Varsity Boys Football
Jul 26, 2015
An abbreviated version of this story appears in the Sunday Life section of The Oklahoman. Tulsa painter tackles issue of American Indian mascots with artistic helmet series Under the bright lights, a gleaming line of helmets showcase mascots and logos no team has ever worn -- and almost certainly, no team ever will. A portrait of the pope in his tall hat called a mitre. An American Indian...
Tulsa artist Matthew Bearden takes on American Indian mascot issue with painted helmet series
Brandy McDonnell | Jul 26, 2015[img width="" height="" style="" render="w620"]3746143[/img] An abbreviated version of this story appears in the Sunday Life section of The Oklahoman. Tulsa painter tackles issue of American Indian mascots with artistic helmet series Under the bright lights, a gleaming line of helmets showcase mascots and logos no team has ever worn -- and almost certainly, no team ever will. A portrait of the pope in his tall hat called a mitre. An American Indian warrior with the feathers of his war bonnet rendered instead as bullets and bombs. A white devil bearing a wide grin. “You still have the Red Devils, you got your Blue Devils, and now you got your White Devils,” said the artist, Matthew Bearden. “A little message behind it … but some of it is just fun.” A member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation, Bearden is addressing the controversial issue of American Indian sports mascots through his latest project, a series of hand-painted helmets titled “Sacred Mascots.” The Tulsa painter most recently showed the painted helmets at Oklahoma City’s Red Earth Native American Cultural Festival, where he is a longtime exhibitor in the art market. “He’s one of the young guns, I would say. There’s a group of young artists here in Oklahoma that are making impressions throughout the country. And he’s one of the ones that’s kind of leading the way and making some statement art, and I think those helmets are a good example of what he’s done,” said Red Earth Deputy Director Eric Oesch. “Some of these young guys are kind of branching out and exploring more contemporary art … and that just goes to show that native art doesn’t have to be traditional native imagery.” [img width="" height="" style="" render="w620"]3746144[/img] Versatile artist Broad-shouldered and fair-skinned, the painter practically personifies the wisdom of the old adage “appearances can be deceiving.” Bearden said he’s aware he looks more like a jock than an artist and more like a “white guy” than an American Indian. But along with his Citizen Potawatomi heritage, he has Kickapoo, Menominee and Lakota Sioux ancestry, as well as an affinity for the Osage people that comes from growing up in Osage County, home of the Osage Nation. “When I was at Santa Fe (N.M.) at school everyone there thought I was an instructor. … Nobody thought I was a student because I was a white guy. It wasn’t reverse-discrimination. People were just surprised,” he said. “I don’t have to deal with the prejudices that my mother and her brothers had growing up.” Growing up in Hominy, he was devoted to sports, playing baseball, soccer, basketball and football and running track. He also enjoyed creating art from a young age and studied graphic design at Northeastern State University in Tahlequah before attending the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe. Apart from a few portraits of University of Oklahoma football players, he said his love of sports and art never really intersected before “Sacred Mascots.” “Now, I’ve actually written a graphic novel -- haven’t had time to draw it -- and it’s a football-based story. So there you go, it’s kind of coming out,” said Bearden, who spent much of the past winter working on a mural for Schlumberger Limited that chronicles the history of the oilfield services company’s Kellyville training center. “I’ve always painted all kinds of things.” His artwork ranges from to portraits, wildlife paintings and murals that aren’t overtly American Indian to both traditional and contemporary pieces that explicitly express his native heritage. At Oklahoma City’s Kasum Contemporary Fine Art, Bearden’s “The Poser” depicts an American Indian man in traditional dress against a bright pink and orange background reminiscent of Mark Rothko’s famed color-block paintings. His “30 Century Man,” featuring a man in a buffalo horn helmet wearing an elaborate gas mask, gives off a distinctively apocalyptic vibe. Bearden is the only American Indian artist represented at the Plaza District gallery, said Kasum Director and CEO Tony Morton. “I really, really like … the direction of where Matthew’s work is going. It started whenever he kind of left the static, traditional portraiture and started to become slightly surreal. I think he was playing with how to insert unexpected memes into his work,” said Morton, who is also Citizen Potawatomi. “One of the things that I really like about his work, especially in the portraiture, is that he’s kind of evolved the work so that he’s approaching the modern native as a modern person.” [img width="611" height="387" style="" render="w620"]3746145[/img] ‘Sacred Mascots’ Bearden’s “Sacred Mascots” series takes on the hot-button modern issue of American Indian sports mascots. A federal judge this month ordered the cancellation of the Washington Redskins’ federal trademark registrations. Although the NFL team’s president immediately vowed to appeal, it was a big decision in the 20-year battle over the team name, which many American Indian activists say is disparaging. In Oklahoma City, Capitol Hill High School is gearing up for its first year as the Red Wolves after the school board voted unanimously in December to ditch the Redskins moniker. Bearden said he was inspired to start his series of paintings on helmets last fall while trying to explain the native perspective on such mascots to his wife, Camden, who is not American Indian. “I said it would be like Notre Dame putting the pope on their helmet. … Notre Dame would never do that,” Bearden said. “Basically, he’s the chief and he wears a sacred hat and that’s kind of what you get when you start doing chiefs wearing bonnets. Those are religious objects that someone had to earn the right to wear. … You had to earn the right to wear a feather. So, I told my wife, ‘You know what, I’m gonna paint that on a helmet,’ so I did.” Titled “Cupo di Roma,” his helmet picturing the pope won a ribbon at last year’s Cherokee Art Market at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tulsa, although the win was not without controversy. “I was approached by a Catholic … and he was a little upset. He went through the long history of the church helping native people, and I said, ‘Look, this is not a knock on Catholicism. It’s just an example, but if you are offended, then maybe you could understand why Native Americans might be,” Bearden said. “I’m not a huge activist but some of these things kind of touch my heart, so I’ll paint them.” Along many schools have ditched nicknames like Savages, Braves and Warriors to avoid offending, the artist acknowledged the issue isn’t that simple. The teams in his hometown are the Hominy Bucks. “Our mascot is an Osage Warrior, but if you tried to change the mascot, the Osage people would be strongly against that,” Bearden said, recalling the pushback a new coach got when he proposed covering the warrior logo on the basketball court. “Redskins, that’s not so good. But some of the mascots I think are done respectfully and are approved by whoever they’re supposed to represent.” [img width="386" height="490" style="" render="w620"]3746146[/img] Helmet messages Beyond the mascot issue -- his “White Devil” helmet is a comment on “Red Devils,” another team mascot that many activists consider offensive -- Bearden has used the unusual canvas helmets provide to pay homage to his heroes, have a bit of fun and make satirical comments on other social issues. His helmet titled “Grandpa Johnny Bruno” features a portrait of his maternal grandfather, who was a first-cousin of Jim Thorpe. Another depicts Patrick Swayze and a tube of Brylcreem, a tribute to the actor’s character from the film adaptation of the Tulsa novelist S.E. Hinton’s book “The Outsiders.” Painted bullet holes riddle a white helmet adorned with a pansy and a pistol. Along with doing commissions, Bearden is working on new paintings for this fall’s Indian Summer Festival in Bartlesville Cherokee Art Market at Hard Rock Tulsa as well as a 2016 state Capitol exhibit, where he hopes to unveil a planned portrait of Thorpe. Plus, he plans to continue painting on helmets. “I’ve got my garage full of helmets right now. I’m friends with a few football coaches here in the Tulsa area, and I’ve already loaded up on inventory. I’ve got a lot more ideas to do, and not all of them are tackling the mascot controversy,” he said. “It’s been pretty interesting, the response so far.” TO KNOW MORE To learn more about Matthew Bearden’s artwork, search for him on Facebook or email email@example.com. UPCOMING EVENTS Oklahoma Indian Summer Festival When: Sept. 17-20. Where: Bartlesville Community Center, 300 SE Adams Blvd. Information: okindiansummer.org. Cherokee Art Market When: Oct. 10-11. Where: Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tulsa, 770 W Cherokee Street, Catoosa. Information: cherokeeartmarket.com. -BAM
Jun 18, 2015
The day started in the office of a United States Senator. The day ended with a waterfront seafood dinner in beautiful Annapolis, Md. In between I walked through the theater where Abraham Lincoln was shot and through the room where he died, 150 years ago this April. I discovered why people say “It’s a small […]
D.C. travelblog: From a Senator's office to a President's death bed
Berry Tramel | Jun 18, 2015[img url=http://blog.newsok.com/dittocontent/uploads/sites/3/2015/06/fords-theater.jpg]3707267[/img] The day started in the office of a United States Senator. The day ended with a waterfront seafood dinner in beautiful Annapolis, Md. In between I walked through the theater where Abraham Lincoln was shot and through the room where he died, 150 years ago this April. I discovered why people say "It's a small world" and why people say D.C. traffic is in the worst in America. I discovered some more gems about the U.S. Capitol. If it sounds like quite a day on our D.C. adventure, believe me. It was. IN EVERY HART THERE IS A ROOM [img url=http://blog.newsok.com/dittocontent/uploads/sites/3/2015/06/tramel-and-lankford.jpg]3707268[/img] I headed to the Capitol complex early Wednesday. Oklahoma senator James Lankford meets with constituents from 9-9:45 a.m. every Wednesday for coffee and informal conversation. Most congressional members try to be available to their electorate, but they're like everyone else. Jam-packed schedules. So Lankford sets up what amounts to office hours for his constituents. The government has three senatorial office buildings just northeast of the Capitol. The Hart Senate Office Building, named for Philip A. Hart, a U.S. senator from Michigan from 1959 until his death in 1976. Hart was known as the "Conscience of the Senate." Too bad he wasn't known as the conscience of architecture. Congress gets a bad rap for its own extravagance, but rest assured, it wasn't opulent in its office buildings. The Hart Building is a fine facility, but it was built in the 1970s and looks it. Nothing at all like the regal government buildings down the hill. Lankford's office is on the third floor -- and he was down in the basement until a few weeks ago. Rookies are banished to the basement, but Lankford, who ranks 92nd in Senate seniority, moved into the main building recently and really hasn't gotten everything in order. He apologized for the giant mirror hanging behind his desk, which he inherited from the previous occupier of the office, whose name will not mentioned to protect the guilty. About 20 Oklahomans gathered to chat with Lankford. A pharmacist from Norman and his family (more on them later). Two ministers (more on them later). Three students in D.C. to compete in the National History Contest, one with her family of four from Broken Arrow plus her teacher and her teacher's mother, two more from Classen with their mothers. A farmers advocate from Hollis. A just-graduated Stillwater High School student and his mother. I think that was it. Lankford's staff, all young, greeted us, then Lankford arrived and could not have been more accommodating. I like several things about Lankford: He's down to Earth. No pretentiousness. He's smart. I assume we have few dilberts in Congress, but Lankford seems exceptionally bright. A good friend of mine is a political reporter who likes Lankford for this reason -- ask him why he voted a certain way on a bill, or what's really going on with the bill, and Lankford actually knows. Doesn't have to ask an aide for a reminder or a briefing. Lankford knows. My friend says it's not the same with our other senator, Jim Inhofe. Lankford is not a career politician. Six years ago, Lankford was running Falls Creek, the Baptist Youth Camp outside Davis, in the Arbuckle Mountains, and had been for more than decade. Now he's a U.S. senator. Mr. Lankford goes to Washington. We need fewer lawyers and fewer career politicians in Congress. Lankford fits the bill. Lankford's wife, Cindy, is in town for the week, because his daughters are at Falls Creek. He said that's a treat, and I'll bet that's right. Lankford told us tries to get home most weekends, but otherwise, he's home only one week out of seven, plus most of August. The Senate session is almost year-round. The congressional members with families usually try to maintain such schedule. Displayed just outside his inner office are five football helmets. Officials from Oklahoma Baptist University brought the first, then Burns Hargis brought an OSU helmet signed by Mike Gundy, and since then OU, Tulsa and UCO have joined the collection. Lankford fielded questions about education and farming and world hunger. Pharmacist Brian Shaw's daughter, who's headed for the fifth grade, asked Lankford the best question -- where does he live while he's in Washington. (Lankford said he lives in a Row House, not far from the Capitol, with eight other congressmen, which sounds insufferable.) I told Lankford I was pleased that his office was next to the office of Elizabeth Warren, the Democrat from Massachusetts who graduated high school from Northwest Classen, and I was glad to see the Republicans and Democrats weren't separated in the building. Lankford gave us a quick tutorial on how things move slower in the Senate, by rule, and how members of opposing parties have to work together more than they do in the House. More common ground is needed in D.C., in my opinion. In D.C. and elsewhere. Lankford even told us about a bill he's working on with noted Democrat Dianne Feinstein of California. So that's encouraging. The time went fast, and Lankford posed for pictures with each individual group. I thought it was cool. I know Congress has a well-deserved rap, but when you meet someone like Lankford, you get a little more faith in the system, and when you're in D.C., you get a little more pride about the process itself. I left Lankford's office with a little more hope. CAPITOL GAINS [img url=http://blog.newsok.com/dittocontent/uploads/sites/3/2015/06/senate-chamber.jpg]3707266[/img] Lankford's office offered tours of the Capitol and Senate Gallery passes. The Dish still was in conference, until noon, so I figured I'd tour the Capitol again. See if a Senate intern could get me more places than what the official Capitol tour had. And the answer was yes. Josh Jackson, an OSU student from Coweta and a really nice fellow, took a group of seven of us on the tour. Josh wore a light blue sportcoat; I told him he had no future in Washington, where everyone in politics seems to dress alike (dark suit). Just getting to the Capitol was interesting. We went to the basement of the Hart Building, passed the catacomb offices from which Lankford had just escaped and walked under one of the other Senate office buildings. Then we arrived at the underground tram that zips people back and forth between the office buildings and the capitol. We had gone through security to enter the Hart Building, but they rechecked our electronics -- cell phones, primarily -- and we jumped aboard the small train. At the Capitol, Josh went to get our admission tickets and had to stand in line. The Dish and I didn't stand in line at all on Monday. But while we waited, we visited the Capitol Exhibit Hall, which we had skipped Monday. There were some cool artifacts displayed. Maybe the best were the models of the Capitol through the years, from its original 1800 opening to its burning in 1814 by the British to its reconstruction and additions. Then we headed up, and Josh gave us the same general tour as the regular tour, with some notable exceptions. Josh took us to the Will Rogers statue, which sits on the second floor, connecting the House Chamber to the Rotunda. Remember, every state gets two statues in the Capitol. Oklahoma's are Sequoyah and Will Rogers. The latter was placed in the Capitol in 1939, four years after Rogers' death. Josh told us some cool things about the statue. First, it faces the House Chamber, because Rogers warned never to turn your back on Congress. And for some reason, it's become tradition that rubbing Rogers' shoes bring good luck. Sure enough, Rogers' bronzed feet have turned to gold, as people rub them. Presidents walk down that corridor on their way to the inauguration; Josh said D.C. lore is that six straight presidents have rubbed the feet of Will Rogers. Josh also took us into two fabulous rooms we didn't see on the official tour, although I think we could have gone if we had just known to find them. The Old Supreme Court Chamber was a beautiful, intimate room, restored in 1975 to how it looked from 1810-1860. The Supreme Court moved in 1860 to the former Senate Chamber, and the room was converted into a law library. After the Supreme Court left the Capitol in 1935, the Old Supreme Court Chamber was divided into four rooms and used by the joint committee on atomic energy. We also toured the old Senate Chamber, which was used from 1819-1859 by the Senate, then was home to the Supreme Court from 1860-1935. Beautiful and ornate and much more intimate than the current Senate Chamber. Then the tour was over, but we were free to go to the gallery. That required more security, including turning in your cell phone and all electronics. No photos, no cell phones, no nothing. The Congressional chambers are fairly serious places. So we checked our cell phones, went up an elevator and walked through some halls before again going through security. Then we were ushered into the gallery, what amounts to the balcony. The chamber was mostly empty except for officials at the front, doing whatever they do. We couldn't see every Senate seat, but there couldn't have been more than five senators in the room. When we sat down, Maryland Democrat Barbara Mikulski was talking about immigration, telling success stories about young, illegal immigrants. While she talked, Jim Inhofe came in and sat down by her, and later they had a conversation. Which again, to me, was symbolically encouraging. We need more dialogue between the parties. Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine, a Democrat, Virginia senator, then started speaking, but we couldn't see him, and I figured I had seen enough to get inspired. So out I went. Down the hall, down the elevator, back to the cell-phone holding room, out the doors and into the sunlight of a free nation. It had been a good day already. FORD'S THEATER It was a little after noon, and the Dish got out of her conference at noon. I texted her before relinquishing my cell phone to the United States Senate, asking if she wanted to grab a cab and meet me at Ford's Theater. We had tickets to tour the shrine at 1:30 p.m. I jumped in a cab myself and we met almost at the same, about 12:15. Too early to enter the theater, so we walked across the street to a deli and got a sandwich. Cosi, is the name of the place. Sort of like a Panera Bread. It was decent and popular. Then we went back to Ford's Theater, which is located a few blocks north of the National Mall, basically in downtown D.C. Ford's Theater sits in the middle of a city block on 10th Street. It was a Baptist church for the first half of the 19th century, but the church sold it, and John Ford turned it into a theater in 1863. It's estimated that the Lincolns attended Ford's Theater a dozen times. We were disappointed to learn that the theater, as is, is not original. After Lincoln's assassination, the government decreed it should no longer be an entertainment venue. It was converted into a warehouse and office building. In 1893, part of the building collapsed, and 22 people died. The site mostly languished until 1955, when Congress approved a study for its renovation. In 1968, Ford's Theater reopened as a performance hall and national historic site. You generally have to purchase tickets in advance, which we did Monday, for timed-entry. You enter and descend into the basement, where there's a Lincoln museum. I've been to the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum in Springfield, Ill., and it's hard to top that. The Ford's Theater museum has some notable displays which kept the Dish interested, but it's best served to history buffs. The Civil War timeline, with Lincoln's many concerns over leadership and generals, is fascinating. I stayed there an hour and felt like I had completed a Civil War history course. The only thing I missed was a good-sized exhibit on the conspirators, John Wilkes Booth and Co. But they have hourly presentations in the theater itself, and it was time to go. So went ascended back into the theater, and people filled up most of the 661 seats in the place while a U.S. Parks ranger took the stage and told the story of the theater and the night of Lincoln's murder. Even though the theater is a complete restoration, it was quite eerie to be sitting in a seat, looking at the private box where the Lincolns sat 150 years ago, and the stage where Booth leaped to and suffered a broken leg after firing the fatal shot. After the presentation, you walk across the street and get in line to enter the Petersen House, which is where Lincoln was taken after the shot and where he died. The Petersen House is part of the historical site, and you tour three rooms recreated to look like the night of April 14, 1865. The front parlor is where Mary Todd Lincoln sat much of the night. The adjoining room is where Washington police superintendent Almarin Cooley Richards interviewed witnesses and ordered the arrest of Booth. And then you walk through the bedroom where Lincoln died. The original bed long ago was bought by a collector and now is in the Chicago History Museum. But the blood-stained pillow remains with the Petersen House. Upstairs are more Lincoln exhibits, including the stories of the chase for Booth and his conspirators, their capture, arrest, trial and execution. There is much information about Lincoln's family, which was fascinating and much-cursed. Two Lincoln children died young. Robert Todd Lincoln became a prominent American, serving a variety of presidential administrations. Robert Todd Lincoln was at the White House when his father was shot and rushed to the Petersen House. Robert Todd Lincoln was at the Sixth Street Train Station in D.C., serving as Secretary of War, and was an eyewitness when President James Garfield was assassinated by Charles Guiteau on July 2, 1881. And at President William McKinley's invitation, Robert Todd Lincoln was at the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo on Sept. 6, 1901, when McKinley was shot and killed by Leon Czolgosz, though Lincoln did not witness the killing. I think most Americans have a general understanding of Abraham Lincoln's status in history. A rather unassuming political figure who was thrust into the darkest days our nation has seen. And he handled it with uncommon wisdom that cost him his life. You'll appreciate Lincoln even more when you walk the site where he was shot and where he died. IT'S A SMALL WORLD Back to Lankford's office. Twenty or so Oklahomans gathered. Out of how many? Four million. And I had connections to two of them. The pharmacist I mentioned? Brian Shaw and his lovely family. Turns out Brian is a pharmacist at the Walgreen's in Norman, at Main and Flood. That's our Walgreen's. That's where we get our prescriptions filled. I went on the tour with the Shaws and they were a delight. The ministers I mentioned? One of them was the Rev. Lori Walke, associate pastor at Mayflower Congregational Church. She was in town for a world hunger conference. You might remember her as Lori Allen, who played basketball at OSU a few years ago. She was recruited by Dick Halterman and she played for Julie Goodenough and Kurt Budke. Lori mentioned to me that I included her a few years ago in our annual Father's Day tribute and that it remains a great memory for their family. And a few hours later, the Dish and I sat down in Ford's Theater for the ranger's presentation, and sitting right behind us was a woman who introduced herself as Robyn Turney, the mother of Tasha Diesselhorst, the Pond Creek-Hunter girls basketball coach who I wrote about during the 2014 state tournament. Think about it. I'm 1,500 miles from, and within a few hours, totally random, I meet someone I wrote about a few years ago, the mother of someone I wrote about last year and my pharmacist. Amazing. Robyn Turney, whose husband Randy is a long-time coach himself, is in town as part of the Oklahoma Youth Tour, sponsored by the National Rural Electric Co-Op Association. That's the group I've seen around town. They were at the airport when we flew out Saturday, they were at the FDR Memorial when we strolled through on Saturday evening, they were at the Museum of American History on Sunday and they were at Ford's Theater on Wednesday. If you didn't know any better, you'd think somebody was following somebody. TRAFFIC? WHAT TRAFFIC I've been saying all week that the horror stories of D.C. traffic are overrated. I haven't seen much of it. I got into a cab at 8:10 a.m. Monday, wondering if I'd be able to get across town to Lankford's office by 9. I was in front of the building at 8:35. I found taxis easily and found them able to navigate. When we left the Petersen House, we needed to take a cab to Reagan National Airport to rent a car, and when a couple of cabs passed us, an unmarked cab stopped. Guy said he had his own service and would give us a ride: $15 to Reagan. We jumped in and he was great. Told us more stuff than any taxi driver had. Got us there quickly, even though it was rush hour. We rented a car and set out for our hotel, to pick up our luggage. I thought it might take an hour, since it was right at 5 p.m. Rush hour. Took us 10 minutes to go the 31/2 miles. Nothing at all. But then we found it. To get to Annapolis, you have to cross D.C. And getting through downtown was bad. Probably took us 25 minutes on L Street, which becomes Massachusetts Avenue, which becomes New York Avenue, which becomes Highway 50. And after we got out of downtown, the traffic worsened. We went two miles in about 50 minutes. I had no deadline, so I didn't get stressed, and I didn't know how else to go anyway. But it was brutal. Finally, we got to the freeway of Highway 50, and it opened up quickly. It's only 30 miles from D.C. to Annapolis. It took 100 minutes, and we made the last 18 miles in about 18 minutes. But I now know what people mean. ARLINGTON NATIONAL One thing we hadn't seen was Arlington National Cemetery, and the Dish really wanted to see it. After getting our rental car at Reagan, en route back to the Melrose Hotel, the GPS told us to go a certain way. Including pulling off the Jefferson Davis Highway, which seemed dubious to me. Seemed like the Jeff was going to take us right where we needed to go. But I dutifully turned off, onto Iwo Jima Boulevard in Arlington, Va., and suddenly, there was Arlington National. It wasn't the main entrance. But we were driving alongside the stone wall that surrounds the cemetery. We saw a turn-in, where we could park and walk in, and the Dish took a bunch of pictures of the gorgeous, serene place. The setting is idyllic. We didn't see any of the famous graves, like the Kennedys'. But Arlington National isn't about fame. It's about service. And the white headstones, row after row, remind you of the ultimate price some have paid for our freedom. DINNER ON THE SOUTH RIVER [img url=http://blog.newsok.com/dittocontent/uploads/sites/3/2015/06/mikes-seafood.jpg]3707269[/img] We're spending two nights in Annapolis, because we've always wanted to see the Naval Academy and the beautiful setting of the Maryland capital. It was 7 p.m. when we got checked in at the Residence Inn, and we were hungry, so our Annapolis exploration will have to wait. But dinner didn't wait. We found a place called Mike's Crab House, which sits hard by the South River, and it was the best meal I've had in months. You can sit outside, by the water, and so we did. I don't like pretentious restaurants, and this wasn't. You can always tell a good seafood joint by the availability of combination dinners. I don't mind paying a lot of money for a lot of seafood. I just don't like paying a lot of money for a little seafood. For instance, at Clyde's the other night in D.C., my dinner was $26 for two good-sized crabcakes and some kind of green bean dish. At Mike's on Wednesday night, my dinner was $28 for a good-sized crab cake, some scallops, several good-sized shrimp and a big piece of grouper, plus a baked potato and salad bar. Even better, I got the Dish's crab soup, because she didn't care for it. Might have been the best soup I've ever had. Thick. I like thick soup. The weather was pristine, about 74 degrees, sitting on the water in the home of our nation's Navy, and the food was fantastic and I got to share it with the Dish, my favorite person in the whole world. I haven't had many better meals in my life. Truth is, this whole day was hard to beat.
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) — Rex Ryan reacts in mock surprise when reminded how young Preston Brown is, and the trust the Bills are placing in the second-year linebacker to command the huddle of their high-priced defense."Oh, gawd, I didn't realize he was 22. I'm a little nervous," the Bills new coach said. "But no. He certainly has more of, I don't know if mature is the right word. But he's been...
At 22, linebacker Brown set to take command of Bills defense
By JOHN WAWROW, Associated Press | Jun 11, 2015ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) — Rex Ryan reacts in mock surprise when reminded how young Preston Brown is, and the trust the Bills are placing in the second-year linebacker to command the huddle of their high-priced defense. "Oh, gawd, I didn't realize he was 22. I'm a little nervous," the Bills new coach said. "But no. He certainly has more of, I don't know if mature is the right word. But he's been around the game awhile." Since Brown was a toddler, to be specific. The son of a Cincinnati-area high school coach, Brown recalls being five when his education in football began with an astute realization. If he wanted to spend more quality time with his father, then it would have to be on his dad's turf: in the basement, where Mike Brown would spend hours poring over game film and devising plays at a big whiteboard. "It was like watching TV with my dad," Brown recalled. "I could watch film all day. That's just something that got real big for me." It was time well spent from both a personal and professional standpoint. In establishing a close bond with his father, Brown also developed a high football IQ, which has allowed the 2014 third-round draft pick out of Louisville make a relatively seamless transition and render Kiko Alonso expendable in Buffalo. As a rookie, Brown started 14 games and led the Bills with 108 tackles while playing in former defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz's 4-3 system. The defense finished fourth in the NFL in fewest yards allowed, had a league-leading 54 sacks and had three linemen earn Pro Bowl selections. This year, Brown is already pegged to set the front-seven alignments in the huddle as the Bills make the switch to a 3-4 scheme under Ryan and new coordinator Dennis Thurman. "He's a smart guy, and you very seldom have to repeat things to him," Thurman said. "Usually a coach's kid is going to have that mental aptitude because he's been around the game for a long time. He's taken to the call. He seems very comfortable in the huddle." The Bills placed so much stock in Brown's ability that it eased their decision to trade Alonso to Philadelphia and acquire running back LeSean McCoy. Alonso, an NFL rookie defensive player of the year candidate in 2013, was expected to regain his starting role after missing all of last season with a knee injury. Valuable as Alonso was, he became the odd man out because of Brown and the presence of fourth-year linebacker Nigel Bradham, who is expected to fill the other starting spot in the middle. The Bills are also moving forward without veteran run-stuffing linebacker Brandon Spikes, who was not re-signed. Brown acknowledged he learned plenty from Spikes. "It's been a whirlwind really of emotions and what's going to happen next," Brown said. "But it shows the confidence they have in us right now that they believe we can go out there and play at a high level." Listed at 6-foot-1 and 251 pounds, Brown has the range to move laterally, and the willingness to take on blockers — two things he'll have to adjust to in the new defensive scheme. Having a command of the system and confidence to call plays shouldn't be a problem after being a three-year starter at college. "It's fun. I'm a 22-year-old guy telling these old guys what to do," Brown said. It goes back to the basement, and Brown learning the game from his father, who is now retired. When he was being recruited to play college, Brown recalled how his dad would invite visiting coaches downstairs to draw up defensive plays on the whiteboard. "It's not really hard to just pick up things," he said. "He could teach me a play, and I'd go out there and do it." Brown would also draw up plays, which his father would critique. "He still says my circles and squares are off," Brown said, with a laugh. "But I'm trying to get better at it." One step at a time. ___ AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and www.twitter.com/AP_NFL
May 13, 2015
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) — As a junior in high school, Jimmy Garoppolo studied video of Tom Brady. As a rookie in the NFL, he watched the superstar in practice.He looked and learned.In the 2015 opener, the spectator will be Brady if his four-game suspension isn't overturned on appeal. Garoppolo, the heir apparent to the New England Patriots quarterback, should get his chance much sooner than...
Brady's fill-in: 2nd-year QB Garoppolo in line to take over
By HOWARD ULMAN, Associated Press | May 13, 2015FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) — As a junior in high school, Jimmy Garoppolo studied video of Tom Brady. As a rookie in the NFL, he watched the superstar in practice. He looked and learned. In the 2015 opener, the spectator will be Brady if his four-game suspension isn't overturned on appeal. Garoppolo, the heir apparent to the New England Patriots quarterback, should get his chance much sooner than expected. Is the second-year pro from a second-tier school up to it? "I have confidence in the kid," said Jeff Christensen, a quarterback tutor who has worked with Garoppolo for nearly 10 years. In Garoppolo's favor: a full season plus this offseason learning from Brady, the mediocre competition in the AFC East, and playing for coach Bill Belichick. Working against him: not having faced major college teams, a lack of NFL experience, and a national spotlight on him as the replacement for a star whose reputation was tarnished in the scandal known as "Deflategate." And what about the team? Could Brady's suspension for his role in deflating footballs in last season's AFC title game seriously harm New England's chances to repeat as Super Bowl champions? Last season, the Patriots started just 2-2 even with Brady. Then he led them to the title. In 2008, they went 11-5 with Matt Cassel at quarterback after Brady suffered a season-ending knee injury in the first quarter of the first game. "The best example in the history of football is right in front of you," Christensen said Tuesday. "Didn't (Drew) Bledsoe get hurt in Tom's second year?" He did. Bledsoe suffered a serious chest injury against the New York Jets in the second game and didn't play again in the 2001 regular season as Brady led the Patriots to the Super Bowl championship. The common denominator is Belichick, who keeps winning despite frequent roster turnover. He thought enough of Garoppolo coming out of Eastern Illinois to use a second-round pick on a player who threw 53 touchdowns with nine interceptions as a senior. And he can simplify the game plan for Garoppolo. "Growing from being a rookie in minicamp to where I am now, I feel a lot more confident," Garoppolo said five days before the Patriots' 28-24 Super Bowl win over the Seattle Seahawks. "He's been practice player of the week for us a number of weeks, probably could've been more, for the look that he gives the defense," Belichick said of Garoppolo's role mimicking opposing quarterbacks. Success would have to come in the spotlight. The Patriots host the Pittsburgh Steelers in the kickoff of the NFL season on Sept. 10. New England will be at Buffalo and then host Jacksonville in the weeks following. Then comes a bye, an extra week for Garoppolo to prepare. The fourth game is at Dallas and Tony Romo, another Eastern Illinois quarterback. If the four-game suspension stands, Brady would return Oct. 18 at Indianapolis, the team that complained about the use of deflated balls in its 45-7 loss in the AFC championship game. But Brady can participate in all offseason activities with Garoppolo nearby to soak up whatever he can. "In practice, when he's standing behind Brady he's going through the exact same reads Tom is and seeing exactly the rhythm of how he does it," said Christensen, a former quarterback at Eastern Illinois drafted in the fifth round by Cincinnati in 1983. "If you're really good mentally, you can get a lot of value out of that." When he first worked with the teenage Garoppolo, who was making the transition at a suburban Chicago high school from linebacker to quarterback, Christensen showed him video of Brady. "Everything I taught was based off of what Brady does technique-wise," Christensen said. As an NFL rookie, Garoppolo played in six games. He completed 19 of 27 passes for 182 yards, one touchdown and no interceptions. His fourth pass as a pro was a 13-yard touchdown to Rob Gronkowski. On the previous play, he connected with Brandon LaFell for 37 yards. Garoppolo entered that 41-14 loss at Kansas City that dropped New England to 2-2 with about 10 minutes left after Brady threw an interception that was returned for a touchdown. "Anybody that wonders if Jimmy can do OK, I would just say this," Christensen said. "Go put on that Kansas City film. He made some good, accurate throws." But it remains to be seen if he can succeed as a starter with a lot more pressure and attention. "I think he'll play well," Christensen said. ___ AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and http://twitter.com/AP_NFL
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) — General manager Doug Whaley joked the Buffalo Bills could have saved some money on scouting by simply targeting Florida State players.After all, three of the six players the Bills selected in the NFL draft this weekend wound up being Seminoles."Shortly after the Pegulas bought the team, they came to me and said, Doug, we spent $1.4 billion on this so we're going to...
Bills stock up on Florida State Seminoles in NFL draft
By JOHN WAWROW, Associated Press | May 2, 2015ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) — General manager Doug Whaley joked the Buffalo Bills could have saved some money on scouting by simply targeting Florida State players. After all, three of the six players the Bills selected in the NFL draft this weekend wound up being Seminoles. "Shortly after the Pegulas bought the team, they came to me and said, Doug, we spent $1.4 billion on this so we're going to have to cut somewhere,'" Whaley said with a smile on Saturday, referring to new owners Terry and Kim Pegula. "Nah," he added before explaining how Buffalo is suddenly turning into Tallahassee North. "They've what, lost one game in two years," Whaley said, referring to the Seminoles 27-1 record, which includes winning the 2014 National Championship. "There's talent there. It just so happens that we picked a lot of it, and deservedly so." The Bills closed the final day of the draft by using two of their final four picks on Seminoles players. Buffalo selected FSU running back Karlos Williams in the fifth round and then tight end Nick O'Leary with the second of its two sixth-round selections. They join Florida State cornerback Ronald Darby, who was selected in the second round on Friday. "It almost feels at home being in Buffalo," Williams said. The Bills could use any edge they can get. Their 15-season playoff drought is the NFL's longest active streak, while their 9-7 record last year matched their best in a decade. Buffalo's current roster now counts six former Seminoles, rounded out by quarterback EJ Manuel, linebacker Preston Brown and long-snapper Garrison Sanborn. The Bills rounded out the draft by selecting Clemson linebacker Tony Steward in the sixth round, and Central Arkansas receiver Dezmin Lewis in the seventh. Of the four late-round selections, O'Leary has the best chance to make an immediate impact in a tight-end friendly offense being installed by new coordinator Greg Roman. Listed at 6-foot-3 and 247 pounds, O'Leary won the John Mackey Award last season, which is presented to the nation's top tight end. In four seasons, he set the school record among tight ends with 114 catches for 1,591 yards and 18 touchdowns, including one rushing. "He's not the fastest. He's not the tallest. He's not the most athletic," Bills player personnel director Jim Monos said. "But then you watch him and all he does is make plays on one of the best teams in the country." Williams, selected 155th overall, played both safety and linebacker during his first two seasons at FSU before switching to running back. He scored 11 touchdowns rushing in each of his past two seasons, and is also an adept special teams player. Williams joins an already crowded backfield after the Bills acquired LeSean McCoy in a trade with Philadelphia. He will compete with Bryce Brown and Anthony Dixon for a No. 3 spot behind backup Fred Jackson. Williams, like Darby, ran into off-field trouble at Tallahassee, Florida. In November, a police investigation into a domestic battery assault against Williams ended without charges being filed because the alleged victim declined to speak to police. Darby was cleared of any wrong-doing after acknowledging he witnessed sex between quarterback Jameis Winston and a woman who accused Winston of raping her in December 2012. Winston, who was selected with the No. 1 pick in the draft by Tampa Bay on Thursday, was never charged and was cleared by the school. The two join a team that also signed offensive guard Richie Incognito in January. Incognito missed 15 months of football after being a central figure in the Miami Dolphins bullying scandal in 2013. Whaley said the Bills were comfortable in drafting Darby and Williams after investigating what happened and asking both players about it during pre-draft meetings. "We do that on any issue, be it domestic violence, any indiscretion," Whaley said. "We're going to dig as deep as we can and can. And sitting down and looking at someone in the eye for me is a telltale sign. Is the guy remorseful? Did he do it?" Domestic violence concerns have become a major issue in the NFL. The league recently suspended Dallas Cowboys defensive end Greg Hardy for 10 games after concluding there was credible evidence he roughed up his former girlfriend. NOTES: Steward overcame injuries to both knees in high school and his freshman college season to record 4-1/2 sacks and 13-1/2 tackles for losses in 38 games. ... Lewis is listed at 6-foot-4 and 212 pounds, and had 197 catches for 2,618 yards and 24 touchdowns in four seasons at Central Arkansas. ... O'Leary is golfer Jack Nicklaus' grandson. . ___ AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and www.twitter.com/AP_NFL
Bob West has moved on in his life.Thursday yhe Port Arthur News sports department for the first time since 1972 no longer had West as a full time employee.It was about a month ago when these questions were first presented to West and instead of a story it was correctly determined the best way for the answers is for Bob West to once again on a Sunday say it in his own words.So how did you get to...
Questions and Answers with Bob West on his career as News sports editor
Gabriel Pruett, Associated Press | Apr 11, 2015Bob West has moved on in his life. Thursday yhe Port Arthur News sports department for the first time since 1972 no longer had West as a full time employee. It was about a month ago when these questions were first presented to West and instead of a story it was correctly determined the best way for the answers is for Bob West to once again on a Sunday say it in his own words. So how did you get to Southeast Texas from Missouri? To make a long story short, I hated cold weather and wanted to move somewhere, anywhere away from snow and ice in the winter. I had a good friend and golfing buddy named Dave Wilson who felt the same way. We went to a guy named Al Chandler, who was the head pro at Columbia Country Club, as well as the golf coach at the University of Missouri, and asked him he if had any contacts in the South. Turns out, he’d played golf at Lamar in the 1950s. He set it up for us to attend Lamar. I never looked back. What were you first attempts at sports journalism? A part-time job at the Beaumont Enterprise in 1966, taking high school football calls on Friday night for their Louisiana edition. Did you start as sports editor or reporter? When did you become sports editor? Started full time as a reporter at the Beaumont Journal in 1967. Was also attending Lamar full time and writing for the school newspaper. Came to the PA News in August, 1971 as a reporter, mainly covering Beaumont’s six high schools. Became sports editor in June of 1972. Who was the most important person in your success at this job? That one’s easy. Bill Maddox was the managing editor in Port Arthur who hired me. Bill was the best newspaper person I’ve ever been around. What he did that was so important to my career was encourage me to take strong stands and give opinions. I would never have gotten established without Bill because a lot of folks weren’t ready for some of the things I had to say. Bill had only been here for a few months before I was hired, but he set the table for me with the stance he took on the football tab cover in August of 1971. Little Joe Washington was going to be a senior at Lincoln and was a high school All-America. Bill thought he should be on the cover of the football section but was told, “We don’t put ‘n-word’ on the cover of anything.” Bill said, “Well, that’s about to change.” Knowing how things were at that time, I feared he would get fired. But the publisher , a man named Jack Scott, gave him the green light. So Little Joe and Big Joe, who was the football coach at Lincoln, were on the cover of the tab that year. When Bill named me sports editor the next summer, I knew he’d have my back when I changed the entire approach to covering Lincoln’s teams. We both took some serious heat from readers who resented the attention being given to black athletes, but it was worth it. Why sports journalism? What drove you to this job? Just sort of fell into it. I was a pretty good athlete and sports nut as a kid. I devoured the sports section of every newspaper I could get my hands on in the small town of Centralia, Missouri. English was my best subject in high school and I got high marks in creative writing courses. For some reason I can’t explain, I enrolled in business school at Missouri and wound up hating every minute of it. I didn’t really move toward journalism until I was at Lamar. When I took the part-time job at the Enterprise, the light quickly went on that sports writing was the direction I needed to go. I started getting into all the communications courses I could take at Lamar. I learned a lot from a teacher named Bob Wilkerson. As good at this job as you are, were there ever times you almost left for a bigger paper? Why stay? I had a couple of interesting offers, including one in Mesa, Ariz., that I thought about it long and hard. But my wife was from Port Arthur and I preferred my kids attend schools that weren’t too big. A major factor in staying was that newspaper higher ups allowed me to branch out into radio and TV. My first talk show was at KTRH in Houston in 1980 -- four hours on Saturdays and four hours on Sundays with a guy named Jim Nantz. I also had the opportunity to do color on several Lamar basketball telecasts on Channel 6 in the early and mid ‘80s. My TV highlight was doing the Southland Conference championship game in 1983 with Bill Worrell. The game was shown on a network that was just getting established called ESPN. I also had a sideline writing gig with Pro Football Weekly covering the Houston Oilers. After KTRH, I did sports talk on KLVI in Beaumont for several years. The outside opportunities enabled me to feel comfortable staying at the PA News and helped me to build a treasure trove of contacts I don’t think many guys at small and medium size papers could match. I was also lucky to have good bosses who appreciated my skills and gave me a lot of flexibility and freedom to do what I wanted as long as the nuts and bolts stuff were handled. To that end, it would have been a lot tougher if I hadn’t been able to hire some guys who were outstanding in their own right in the early years. Guys like Burt Darden, Howard Roden, John Curylo, Tom Halliburton and Anthony Andro. I also should mention two of the greatest “stringers” any sports editor could ever hope to have — John DeVillier and Larry Bodin. You have seen it all. Championships. Bad times and the good. What will you take away from the sports scene in our area? The unbelievable number of guys I was exposed to in Southeast Texas who have gone on to make a name for themselves, both as players and coaches. It’s amazing, really, that from a small town in Missouri I landed in one of the most prolific areas of producing sports talent you could find anywhere. Just getting the opportunity to cover the incredible success of Lamar basketball in the late 1970s and early 1980s under Billy Tubbs and Pat Foster was extraordinary. It’s mind boggling to think during one period I was covering Bum Phillips and the Luv Ya Blue Oilers, Billy Tubbs and a Lamar basketball team that was shocking the college basketball world, an innovative high school football coach named Ronnie Thompson at TJ who was changing attitudes about the passing game in Texas and maybe the best high school basketball coach in Texas during the 1970s and 1980s — James Gamble at Lincoln. You have seen great, great athletes perform in Southeast Texas. Which ones were the best of the best? In football, I always start with Little Joe Washington. For years and years I thought he’d be the greatest I’d have the opportunity to cover. But Jamaal Charles broke Joe’s records and is proving to be one of the premier running backs to ever play in the NFL. That’s terrific bookends to a writing career. In basketball, Lincoln’s Earl Evans, to this day, is far and away the best I covered.. His senior year he was ranked second in the nation to Moses Malone among high school players. In baseball, TJ’s Xavier Hernandez and Lincoln’s Chuck McElroy, as they would go on to prove in MLB, were the top two. And I certainly need to include two golfers — Bruce Lietzke and Chris Stroud — who made their mark on the PGA Tour. Bruce won 14 times on the PGA Tour which is pretty amazing. Friendships have been made with legends like Nantz, the Phillips family and Jimmy Johnson. What has that been like for you? It’s been pretty amazing, both professionally and personally. There was nobody like Bum. I learned so much from being around him, watching him and seeing the impact he had on professional athletes and people in general. I could never repay Bum for all he did for me, what I learned from him and what he meant to me. That’s why I pushed so hard to make the Bum Phillips trophy become a reality, and for it to be a really unique, really special trophy. I was probably closer to Bum than to Wade, although Wade and I are basically the same age, my wife was in his wedding and his wife was in my wedding. I have so much respect for Wade and what he’s accomplished as a football coach. I don’t think he gets proper credit for his genius as a defensive coach. Jim Nantz, to me, is too good to be true. I got to know him when he was a senior at the University of Houston doing that sports talk show with me at KTRH. From there, his ascent to being one of the top guys in network TV sports happened with stunning swiftness. But Jim never changed. He always returns my phone calls and e-mails and has been wonderful about offering a helping hand on special projects when I ask for his assistance. He was the emcee of the very first Homecoming Roast for Jimmy Johnson. He’s been terrific about using tidbits I’ve passed along when he’s doing a telecast involving a Jamaal Charles or a Chris Stroud. I was just amazed at the effort he made to get mention of the Bum Phillips trophy on a CBS national telecast. As for Jimmy Johnson, I didn’t start getting to know him until he won the national championship at Miami and we had that first roast. One year later, he was the head coach of the Cowboys and it put me in a position to witness and write about one of the most remarkable coaching jobs in NFL history. Jimmy is maybe the shrewdest, most intelligent guy I’ve ever been around. I was never as close to him as I was to Bum, but he provided me with amazing material as a columnist. I’ll never forget him mentioning me at the final press conference before the Super Bowl when the Cowboys beat Buffalo in Atlanta. Must have been 2,500 media people in the room and he singled me out in front of them and talked about the roast we had for him in Port Arthur after the first Super Bowl win. To this day, when I need his opinion on something in the NFL, he is quick to respond. The roasts became such a big deal and raised a tremendous amount of money for the Museum of the Gulf Coast. How did they get started? When Jimmy Johnson won the national championship at the University of Miami after the 1987 season, I wrote in a column that Port Arthur needed to put on a special event to honor him. I thought the city would be quick to follow up on the suggestion. When there was nothing but silence from city hall, Richard Marler, the football coach at Stephen F. Austin High School, suggested that I put something together. I loved the roast format and phoned Jimmy, who I didn’t know very well at the time, to see if he would be interested in being honored with a roast in his hometown. He jumped at the idea and said he would use his influence, which was considerable, to help get some big names involved. In that first one, the newspaper didn’t have a role. Marler was my right-hand man on the project, we got Sam Monroe involved and formed a committee. The way the thing came together was amazing, especially since we had no budget, no operating funds, nothing that you really need to pull off something like a big roast. Jim Nantz, who was then doing college football for CBS, agreed to be the emcee. Because Jimmy was such a hot name in the coaching profession, we had people all across college football eager to be a part of it. We probably had reps from half a dozen bowls make arrangements to attend. It got so big I wound up adding a golf tournament the day before the roast. When it was over, and things had gone so well, Marler said this is something you need to do on an annual basis. It seemed like a great idea, so I pitched it to Dub Brown, who was then the editor of the Port Arthur News. I told him the newspaper needed to get behind this as a civic project, that we could call it the Port Arthur News Homecoming Roast. Dub, who was one of the those terrific, old-time newspaper guys, said he thought it was a great idea. We decided we’d donate whatever funds were raised to the Museum of the Gulf Coast, singled out Bum Phillips as the next honoree and the rest, as they say, is history. I am extremely proud of what we accomplished with those roasts, the money we were able to raise for the museum and the big names who came to Port Arthur to be a part of them. I am just elated that as I go out the door of the newspaper I’m going to have the opportunity to do another roast to honor Jamaal Charles. Why the hate for Jerry Jones every week? Hate may be a bit strong. I have strongly disliked Jerry since he fired Jimmy, then said there are 500 coaches who could have done what he did with the Cowboys. My stance might have softened a bit if he’d put Jimmy in the Ring of Honor, but that’s not ever going to happen. Jones is obviously a very savvy individual who is a genius when it comes to making money. As an NFL general manager, he’s shown over and over that he’s an abysmal failure. What is it in the last 20 years, two playoff wins? Jethro is just such a perfect foil for somebody who does a notes column on a weekly basis, especially for somebody who grew up watching the Beverly Hillbillies. Every now and then, I try to see if I can go a few weeks without mentioning him in my Sunday column. That’s a real challenge because of the things he says and does, and because he’s just so damn desperate to convince people that he’s a real football guy. I have no doubt he’d make a deal with the devil if it could get him another Super Bowl. You and Tom Halliburton worked together for many years. How special did that working relationship and friendship grow to become? Tom is one of the people I mentioned earlier who made me look good and made my job so much easier. Tom and I were together for more than 30 years, and pretty much knew what each other thought and was going to do next. I don’t even want to think what it would have been like to not have Tom as my right-hand man. Tom had the journalistic background I didn’t. He worked for a newspaper while he was still in high school in Arkansas. He got a journalism degree at the University of Texas. Tom was an excellent writer and the kind of guy who would tackle any assignment. Tom did so much for the sports section that readers would never notice. I’ll always love him for his loyalty to me and for the things he did to make our sports section so strong for so many years. Over the years is there an interview subject that really stuck with you? There were many, but I think the two I remember most were an author named George Plimpton and the comedian, Don Rickles. You have to be a bit of an old timer to remember Plimpton. He was famous for what was called “participatory journalism.” One year he went to training camp with the Detroit Lions, actually played quarterback in a pre-season game and wrote a book about the experience called “Paper Lion.” The book was later made into a movie. Plimpton also wrote a book titled “Bogey Man” about playing on the PGA Tour during the glory days of Arnold Palmer and Jack Nicklaus. He sparred with boxers Archie Moore and Sugar Ray Robinson and pitched in an exhibition game against Willie Mays and other National League stars at Yankee Stadium. All of it was done for books or magazine pieces he was writing. He was in Beaumont in 1972 for a piece he was doing on the great football player, Bubba Smith. I’d come to know Bubba pretty well, he told me about Plimpton being in town and I talked him in to bringing Plimpton to our home for dinner. Bubba, Plimpton and Tom Vance came down — Genie and I were living in Nederland at the time — and it turned into a fascinating interview. It was one of my favorite pieces ever. GOOGLE George Plimpton and you’ll be amazed at what you find. As far as Rickles, I got to interview him in his dressing room at the Golden Nugget in Las Vegas, and I have Walter Umphrey to thank for that. Walter was our roastee in 1991. I wanted to get somebody really funny, along with Ann Richards, to roast him. Because of his status as a “whale” in Vegas, I knew Walter had considerable clout. So I asked him if he could lean on somebody out there and arrange to get Rickles for the roast. It was a done deal within hours, which was quite a tribute to Walter. Executives with the Mirage agreed to fly Rickles in on their private jet. To have Don Rickles coming to Port Arthur was off the charts, so I made the “sacrifice” of going to Vegas to interview him in advance of the roast. It was a little intimidating to be honest, but he was delightful. He must have spent an hour with me. Then, the week of the roast, I had Walter on my radio show and Rickles agreed to join us by phone from his home in Beverly Hills. I had to pinch myself. I had watched Rickles so many times when he was on with Johnny Carson and had seen his act several times in Las Vegas. To get a one-on-one with him, to be part of bringing him to Port Arthur, was such a thrill. And it made for a terrific piece in the Port Arthur News. You took on a lot of causes. Is there one that didn’t work out the way you wanted? For years, I advocated in columns that the Beaumont Independent School District needed to come to its senses, do the right thing and name its beautiful football complex after Jerry LeVias. Jerry was such a pioneer in breaking football racial barriers in the Southwest Conference and should be front and center in Beaumont as an inspiration to all young athletes. It was disgusting to see the stadium named after a superintendent who meant nothing to the city’s history. In light of all that’s gone down in that school district the past few years, I’d think this would be the perfect time for a name change. Who cares if the other guy gets his feelings hurt. At the very least, there needs to be a statue of LeVias inside or outside the stadium. How much golf do you plan to play now and will your wife really be comfortable having you home and not at the office? I only plan to play on days ending in “y.” Golf has long been my passion away from family and job. Writing about golf opened the door for me to play many of the world’s greatest courses and with people like Jack Nicklaus, Darrell Royal and astrounaut Alan Sheppard. My game isn’t nearly as good as it once was, but I enjoy playing more than ever. I’ll pretty much be on call seven days a week. Billy Tubbs is already licking his lips thinking about getting into my wallet. As for the second part, I’m pretty sure Genie will be quite comfortable with me being around. For the 46 years we’ve been married, my hours have been long and I’ve been gone a lot. Beyond that, I know our two boxers, Bogey and Champ, will be pleased to see me on a more regular basis. What do you say to all the readers and supporters through the years? I sincerely appreciate all the readers, even those who didn’t agree with a lot of the things I wrote. It’s always nice to get an e-mail or phone call from somebody who liked something I wrote, or somebody who wanted to challenge something I wrote. I didn’t mind criticism as long as it wasn’t nasty or personal. To me, one of the purposes of writing columns is to express opinions. As most folks know, I tended to have strong opinions and I think I backed them up with a degree of expertise. I never expected or wanted everybody to agree with me. That would be pretty boring. My goal with columns was to be informative and entertaining and to give people something to think about. One of the things I’ve enjoyed most over the years is having some little old lady come up to me and say she enjoys reading my column. You would be surprised at how often that has happened. I’d also like to say how overwhelmed I’ve been with the e-mails and phone calls since my retirement was announced. They’ve come from all over and have been very humbling. ——— ©2015 The Port Arthur News (Port Arthur, Texas) Visit The Port Arthur News (Port Arthur, Texas) at panews.com Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC _____ Topics: t000003393,t000003183,t000046469,t000003194,t000003277,t000003270,t000160437,t000007488,t000007666,t000007466,t000007460,t000007684,t000008056,t000155475,t000040517,g000065659,g000219892,g000362661,g000065562,g000066164,g000065614
AMHERST, N.Y. (AP) — Buffalo moved swiftly to replace Bobby Hurley by promoting assistant Nate Oats to take over as head coach of its men's basketball team.Oats' promotion Saturday came two days after Hurley was hired by Arizona State. Oats spent the past two seasons as an assistant under Hurley and brings continuity to a team that earned its first NCAA Tournament berth last month."After hours...
Buffalo promotes Oats to replace Hurley as basketball coach
Associated Press | Apr 11, 2015AMHERST, N.Y. (AP) — Buffalo moved swiftly to replace Bobby Hurley by promoting assistant Nate Oats to take over as head coach of its men's basketball team. Oats' promotion Saturday came two days after Hurley was hired by Arizona State. Oats spent the past two seasons as an assistant under Hurley and brings continuity to a team that earned its first NCAA Tournament berth last month. "After hours of conversations with Nate, it became very clear to me that the best candidate to lead our men's basketball team was already on campus," athletic director Danny White said in a statement released by the school. "Nate has tremendous experience as one of the finest coaches in America at both the collegiate and high school levels, and played an absolutely critical role in elevating our program." Oats has big shoes to fill after the Bulls went 42-20 under Hurley, the former Duke star point guard. That included a 23-10 finish last season, which ended with Buffalo losing to fifth-seeded West Virginia 68-62 in its NCAA opener. Oats is a noted recruiter and responsible for landing junior forward Justin Moss, the Mid-American Conference's player of the year last season. Buffalo is set to return four starters while losing only two seniors to graduation. "I have witnessed the potential of not only our team, but the entire athletic department over the last two years," Oats said. "We are starting to establish a great tradition of success here." Before coming to Buffalo, Oats had a 222-52 record in 11 seasons coaching Romulus High School, outside of Detroit. He played basketball at Marantha Baptist University in Wisconsin. Oats then spent two seasons as an assistant at Wisconsin-Whitewater, the same Division III school where Lance Leipold coached football before being hired by Buffalo in December.
Apr 10, 2015
TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) — The theater inside Arizona State's athletic complex was packed, television cameras everywhere. Even football coach Todd Graham and his staff showed up.Bobby Hurley can draw a crowd. Arizona State wanted to make a splash with its next basketball coach, and so far it's done just that."Our charge was to go out and find the best and the right fit for this program," Arizona State...
Bobby Hurley quickly becomes popular hire at Arizona State
By JOHN MARSHALL, Associated Press | Apr 10, 2015TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) — The theater inside Arizona State's athletic complex was packed, television cameras everywhere. Even football coach Todd Graham and his staff showed up. Bobby Hurley can draw a crowd. Arizona State wanted to make a splash with its next basketball coach, and so far it's done just that. "Our charge was to go out and find the best and the right fit for this program," Arizona State athletic director Ray Anderson said Friday. "We believe very, very strongly and very confidently that we have accomplished that mission." The 43-year-old coach inherits a team playing in a major conference and stuck in mediocrity. "This is a destination job for me," said Hurley, who sat at the news conference between Anderson and Arizona State President Michael Crow. "A place that I want to spend a lot of time and be a fixture in the community and be a big part of the success of this entire athletic department." He will have his work cut out for him. Arizona State has enjoyed stretches of success, yet has not been able to sustain it. The Sun Devils have not won a conference regular-season title since the WAC in 1974-75 under coach Ned Wulk and have been to the NCAA Tournament in consecutive seasons just twice, the last one in 1980-81. Hurley succeeds Herb Sendek, who was respected at Arizona State and across the sport but couldn't win consistently. Arizona State reached the NCAA Tournament twice before he was fired in March after nine seasons as coach. Hurley said Levi Watkins, who worked on his staff at Buffalo, will join him at Arizona State and former Sendek assistant Stan Johnson will remain with the program. Hurley has proved himself at every level. He was a successful high school player under his father, Bob Hurley Sr., winning four state championships for a coach who is in the Naismith Hall of Fame. Hurley kept winning at Duke, where the fiery point guard went to the Final Four three times, won two national championships and was an All-American in 1993. He revived his NBA career after a horrific car accident, playing four more years. Hurley paid his basketball dues when he returned from a stint in horse racing, working as a scout for the Philadelphia 76ers before joining brother Dan Hurley at Wagner and Rhode Island. Once he became a head coach, Hurley won immediately. He led Buffalo to its first conference title and first NCAA Tournament in his second season as a coach. His next task is to change the basketball culture at Arizona State and win over recruits. "I think that I have a national name, have a name that people recognize," Hurley said. "My career as a player in college athletics and winning championships opens the doors for me. My dad being the legendary high school coach that people know, I'd be able to pick up the phone and develop relationships with all the people I need to." Once Hurley gets in the door, he will try to bust it all the way open. Though he may not have been the most physically gifted player, Hurley made up for it with a high basketball IQ that came from growing up around the game. His dirt-under-the-nails work ethic wore down opponents. It also allowed him to recover from a car accident that nearly killed him and become an NBA player again. "I have a blue-collar mentality because of my upbringing and nothing has ever come easy for me," Hurley said. "People really always doubted my career as a player, really never expected me to take it as far as I took it. My expectations and what other people's expectations are are a little different, so hopefully we'll get on the same page and get that done."
FRIDAY MLB SPRING TRAINING Noon, Tampa Bay vs. Detroit, MLBN (Cox 264) 5 p.m., Atlanta vs. Baltimore, MLBN (Cox 264) 8:30 p.m., Chi. Cubs vs. Arizona, MLBN (Cox 264) NBA 7 p.m., Oklahoma City at Memphis, FSOK (Cox 37)/ESPN (Cox 29)/WWLS-AM 640/98.1 FM 9:30 p.m., Portland at L.A. Lakers, ESPN (Cox 29) NHL 6 p.m., Chicago at Buffalo, NHLNET (Cox 263) 7:30 p.m., St. Louis at Dallas, FSPLUS (Cox...
Sports TV listings for Oklahoma City: Friday, April 3-Sunday, April 5
Apr 2, 2015FRIDAY MLB SPRING TRAINING Noon, Tampa Bay vs. Detroit, MLBN (Cox 264) 5 p.m., Atlanta vs. Baltimore, MLBN (Cox 264) 8:30 p.m., Chi. Cubs vs. Arizona, MLBN (Cox 264) NBA 7 p.m., Oklahoma City at Memphis, FSOK (Cox 37)/ESPN (Cox 29)/WWLS-AM 640/98.1 FM 9:30 p.m., Portland at L.A. Lakers, ESPN (Cox 29) NHL 6 p.m., Chicago at Buffalo, NHLNET (Cox 263) 7:30 p.m., St. Louis at Dallas, FSPLUS (Cox 68) GOLF 11 a.m., LPGA: ANA Inspiration, GOLF (Cox 60) 2 p.m., Houston Open, GOLF (Cox 60) 5 p.m., LPGA: ANA Inspiration, GOLF (Cox 60) TENNIS Noon, ATP World Tour, ESPN2 (Cox 28) 6 p.m., ATP World Tour, ESPN2 (Cox 28) AHL 6 p.m., Oklahoma City at Charlotte, KXXY-FM 96.1 COLLEGE BASEBALL 2 p.m., TCU at Texas Tech, FSOK (Cox 37) 6 p.m., Kansas at Oklahoma, FCS (Cox 273)/KREF-AM 1400/98.5 FM 6 p.m., Texas A&M at Kentucky, SECN (Cox 275) 7 p.m., Texas at Oklahoma State, KSPI-FM 93.7 COLLEGE SOFTBALL 6:30 p.m., Iowa State at Oklahoma, FCS (Cox 271) WOMEN’S VOLLEYBALL 6 p.m., SMU at Texas, LHN (Cox 274) LACROSSE 6 p.m., N. Carolina at Virginia, ESPNU (Cox 253) 7:30 p.m., Villanova at Denver, FS1 (Cox 67) BOXING 8 p.m., P. Petrov vs. G. Diaz, ESPN2 (Cox 28) BOYS BASKETBALL 10 a.m., Gonz. Prep vs. Miami C. Day, ESPNU (Cox 253) Noon, South Shore vs. Dillard, ESPNU (Cox 253) 2 p.m., Nationals Semifinals, ESPN2 (Cox 28) 4 p.m., Nationals Semifinals, ESPN2 (Cox 28) NBADL 7 p.m., Idaho at Oklahoma City, KINB-FM 105.3 SATURDAY MLB SPRING TRAINING Noon, Cincinnati vs. Toronto, MLBN (Cox 264) 1 p.m., N.Y. Mets vs. Texas, FSOK (Cox 37) 3 p.m., San Francisco vs. Oakland, MLBN (Cox 264) 8 p.m., L.A. Angels vs. L.A. Dodgers, MLBN (Cox 264) NHL 2 p.m., Vancouver at Winnipeg, NHLNET (Cox 263) 6 p.m., Toronto at Boston, NHLNET (Cox 263) 7 p.m., Dallas at Nashville, FSOK (Cox 37) AUTO RACING 5:30 p.m., FIA Formula E, FS1 (Cox 67) GOLF Noon, Houston Open, GOLF (Cox 60) 2 p.m., Houston Open, KFOR-4 (Cox 4) 4 p.m., LPGA: ANA Inspiration, GOLF (Cox 60) MEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL 5:09 p.m., Michigan State vs. Duke, TBS (Cox 62) 7:49 p.m., Wisconsin vs. Kentucky, TBS (Cox 62) MEN’S TENNIS 3 p.m., Texas Tech at Texas, LHN (Cox 274) WOMEN’S TENNIS Noon, ATP World Tour, ESPN2 (Cox 28) COLLEGE BASEBALL Noon, Texas A&M at Kentucky, SECN (Cox 275) 1 p.m., Indiana St. at Wichita St., ESPNU (Cox 253) 2 p.m., Kansas at Oklahoma, FSPLUS (Cox 68)/FCS (Cox 272)/KREF-AM 1400/98.5 FM 6 p.m., Arkansas at Auburn, SECN (Cox 275) 6:30 p.m., Texas at Oklahoma State, ESPNU (Cox 253)/KSPI-FM 93.7 COLLEGE SOFTBALL 11 a.m., Alabama at Kentucky, ESPNU (Cox 253 Noon, Texas Tech at Baylor, FSPLUS (Cox 68) 1 p.m., Texas State at Texas, LHN (Cox 274) 3:30 p.m., Tennessee at Auburn, SECN (Cox 275) LACROSSE 4 p.m., Notre Dame at Duke, ESPNU (Cox 253) MEN’S SOCCER 6:45 a.m., English Premier League, NBCSN (Cox 251) 9 a.m., English Premier League, NBCSN (Cox 251) 11:30 a.m., Chelsea vs. Stoke City, KFOR-4 (Cox 4) WOMEN’S SOCCER 3 p.m., USA vs. New Zealand, FS1 (Cox 67) ARENA FOOTBALL 9:30 p.m., Arizona at Las Vegas, ESPN2 (Cox 28) GIRLS BASKETBALL 9 a.m., High School Nationals, ESPN2 (Cox 28) BOYS BASKETBALL 11 a.m., High School Nationals, ESPN (Cox 29) NBADL 6 p.m., Oklahoma City at Erie, KINB-FM 105.3 GYMNASTICS 4 p.m., NCAA Norman Regional, FSOK (Cox 37)/FCS (Cox 271) BOXING 2 p.m., A. Stevenson vs. S. Bika, KWTV-9 (Cox 10) SUNDAY MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL 7 p.m., St. Louis at Chi. Cubs, ESPN2 (Cox 28) NBA Noon, Houston at Oklahoma City, KOCO-5 (Cox 8)/WWLS-AM 640/98.1 FM 2:30 p.m., Chicago at Cleveland, KOCO-5 (Cox 8) 6 p.m., Golden St. at San Antonio, NBATV (Cox 256) 8:30 p.m., L.A. Clippers at L.A. Lakers, NBATV (Cox 256) NHL 11 a.m., Pittsburgh at Philadelphia, KFOR-4 (Cox 4) 4 p.m., Washington at Detroit, NHLNET (Cox 263) 6:30 p.m., St. Louis at Chicago, NBCSN (Cox 251) GOLF 7 a.m., Drive-Putt-Chip, GOLF (Cox 60) Noon, Houston Open, GOLF (Cox 60) 2 p.m., Houston Open, KFOR-4 (Cox 4) 4 p.m., LPGA: ANA Inspiration, GOLF (Cox 60) MEN’S TENNIS Noon, ATP World Tour, ESPN (Cox 29) WOMEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL 5:30 p.m., Notre Dame vs. S. Carolina, ESPN (Cox 29) 8 p.m., Maryland vs. UConn, ESPN (Cox 29) COLLEGE BASEBALL 11 a.m., Vanderbilt at Georgia, SECN (Cox 275) 1 p.m., Texas at Oklahoma State, ESPNU (Cox 253)/KSPI-FM 93.7 COLLEGE SOFTBALL 2 p.m., Oregon at UCLA, ESPN2 (Cox 28) 2:30 p.m., Alabama at Kentucky, SECN (Cox 275) 5 p.m., Mississippi St. at Arkansas, SECN (Cox 275) MEN’S SOCCER 7:30 a.m., English Premier League, NBCSN (Cox 251) 10 a.m., English Premier League, NBCSN (Cox 251) 4 p.m., Salt Lake at San Jose, ESPN2 (Cox 28) 6 p.m., Sporting KC at Philadelphia, FS1 (Cox 67)
Mar 24, 2015
First, the bad news. It snowed on us Monday night. I guess that’s your first clue that we didn’t make it back to Oklahoma. We hear it’s 80 back home. I can promise you this. It wasn’t 80 in Cleveland. Wasn’t Hot in Cleveland, even if Valerie Bertinelli stars in a show by that name. […]
Columbus travelblog: Wrong museum in Canton
Berry Tramel | Mar 24, 2015[img url=http://blog.newsok.com/dittocontent/uploads/sites/3/2015/03/nfl-jerseys.jpg]3612481[/img] First, the bad news. It snowed on us Monday night. I guess that's your first clue that we didn't make it back to Oklahoma. We hear it's 80 back home. I can promise you this. It wasn't 80 in Cleveland. Wasn't Hot in Cleveland, even if Valerie Bertinelli stars in a show by that name. See, that's the worse news. It snowed on us Monday night in Cleveland, and we're headed somewhere far worse. We're driving to Syracuse. When the Sooners were sent to the Northeast -- Columbus first, which is Midwest from a historical perspective but in truth is in the middle of the state that is the gateway to the American northeast, and then Syracuse -- we decided that if OU won two games and reached the Sweet 16, we'd just stay. Economically, it made sense. We were scheduled to arrive back in Dallas at 7 p.m., then drive home, which would have made it around 10:30. We'd have flown back to Syracuse sometime around noon Wednesday, which meant leaving home at 10 or 10:30. So for one full day and one partial morning back home, we'd have needed another round-trip ticket to a place that's expensive and difficult to reach. So we're driving to Syracuse, where the temperature was 11 degrees when I checked Monday morning. It looks like it might warm up into the 40s by the time the East Regional gets started. Which will be balmy by upstate New York standards. Until we get there, there are a few things to see along the way. CANTON PALACE The Pro Football Hall of Fame sits in Canton, about an hour south of downtown Cleveland, about 90 minutes north of Columbus. I'd been to Canton thrice, for the induction ceremonies of Tommy McDonald (1998), Barry Sanders (2004) and Troy Aikman (2006). I was scheduled to come in 1995, the year Lee Roy Selmon, Steve Largent and Tulsa U.'s Jim Finks were inducted, but I needed a pinch-hitter after a broken leg on the softball diamond the night before my flight. So I'd been to Canton during the fussle and bustle of Induction Weekend, when the grounds are covered with literally tens of thousands of football fans. The induction ceremony just gets bigger and bigger. When I first came, the festivities were conducted on the Hall of Fame's veranda, which is where McDonald gave his famously goofy speech and tossed his Hall of Fame bust into the air to show he still could catch. Fans spilled out on the grassy knoll below the veranda. By 2004, the inductions had moved to Fawcett Stadium, which is adjacent to the Hall of Fame grounds and part of famed Canton McKinley High School. For Sanders' induction, I had a seat in the Fawcett pressbox. Two years later, the party had gotten so big, there was a pecking order for media, and I didn't make the cut. I wasn't in the pressbox; my work space was a room with televisions in the Hall of Fame, though I could roam the stadium during the ceremony. So I was looking forward to seeing the Hall of Fame under a little more sedate conditions. I had come away impressed with the Hall on my previous visits. Even wrote that I thought it was better than the Baseball Hall of Fame, which I visited in 1976 and again in 2000. But I don't know. Didn't wow me this time. Maybe because I had been so much. It's still good. Still a must for NFL fans. Just nothing spectacular. And they got me started with a bad attitude on the opening kickoff. Tickets are $24, which is fine, and for $43, you get a two-day pass that includes admission to the Rock 'n Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, which we plan to go through Tuesday. Seemed like a fine deal. But the gougers at Canton charge you $10 to park. I can understand paying to park. If you're in Midtown Manhattan. If you're in an urban downtown. If you're on a college campus. If you're on Main Street in Hometown, America, and the meter needs a quarter. But $10 to park in a spacious lot on an Ohio hillside? The Hall of Fame fundamentally is a place of business. You are there to spend money. They are not doing you a favor by letting you come on their land. You are doing them a favor. Sort of like the parking charge at Frontier City in OKC. Drives me nuts. Anyway, we went through the Hall of Fame, and here are my impressions on my first leisurely stroll through the Canton shrine: * The most interesting room is the Hall of Fame Gallery, which includes the busts of all the inductees. Do you remember the M*A*S*H episode where Frank and Hot Lips give Col. Potter an anniversary gift of a wooden bust of Potter? The Korean sculptor, who doubles as a trinket salesman, makes the Colonel look a little too Korean. I thought of the episode when I walked through the Hall's gallery. Some of those guys didn't look much like themselves. We started a playing a little game. Someone would cover the name, and I'd try to guess who the inductee was. I got Frank Gifford, and some of the later guys. But man, this wasn't a tiptop job. Some of that can be blamed on the lighting. The gallery is darkened, with individual lights shone on each bust, but not a bright light. More like a pinball light. As if they don't want fans to be able to see the unlikenesses. Some were OK. Tom Landry, sans fedora, looks just like himself. Jerry Rice. A few others. * The best part of the Hall of Fame is the uniforms. From old to new, uniforms are the best part of football memorabilia. In fact, I have a suggestion for the Hall of Fame. Dedicate a room to the uniform progression of each team. Showing the Packers through the years. The Broncos. The Buccaneers. That would be the most popular exhibit by far. [img url=http://blog.newsok.com/dittocontent/uploads/sites/3/2015/03/ssu.jpg]3612527[/img] * Lots of artifacts, which generally don't do much for me. A football shoe in 1952 compared to a football shoe in 2012 doesn't do much for me. But you still find nuggets. Like this: Larry Allen's football helmet from Sonoma State, an sUs type logo on the helmet that looks exactly like the vintage oSu logo on Oklahoma State helmets from the '70s. Somebody was trademark infringing, I promise you. This would be the second OSU/Sonoma State connection I know. Our man A.C. Slater of Thunder writing fame grew up in northern California and attended Sonoma State before transferring to OSU. * The Hall of Fame doesn't have nearly enough interactive video. Some, but not enough. You'd think you could go to a kiosk, punch up a team and view the 10 most memorable plays in Kansas City Chiefs history. But no. There's a big theater room that repeatedly plays "The Road to the Super Bowl," a 17-minute video that is falseness in advertising. It's not the road to anything. It's the Super Bowl itself. A 17-minute video about the most recent Super Bowl, except I guess we're a little too close to last Feb. 1, because they don't have the new video completed. We sat through a 17-minute video of the Seattle-Denver rout of 14 months ago. I thought the video was good, but nothing you can't see on NFL Network several times a day. A far better video was a seven-minute video shown while you're waiting in line to enter the theater room, this one about training camp. Lots of vintage footage of Vince Lombardi and Tom Coughlin and the like, from training camps through the years. I thought that was interesting. * To show you how the nation is spiraling into a place it doesn't want to go, the bottom level is billed as an interactive gallery. Ryan Aber remembers it as a place where kids could go and throw football and kick footballs and such. Now, it's all video-game based. You don't go onto a set and feel like you're throwing a football in Lambeau Field. You sit down with computer controls and simulate on a screen. I swear, if our nation ever falls, it's going to be computer-based. A foreign power will infiltrate our computer systems and we won't even know it. We'll be sitting inside somewhere, not paying attention. * I asked each of my pals what they thought of the Hall. Aber had been once, as a young adult. John Shinn had been as a kid. Guerin Emig never had been. Aber: Good, since it had a lot of Packers stuff. Shinn: Too much Packers stuff. (He's a Bears man.) "A lot of cool artifacts, and I like artifacts." Shinn liked Joe Namath's knee brace from Super Bowl 3 and seeing old logos, like a goofy Cleveland Browns from what I assume was the '50s. Emig: "Helps to be a Steelers fan." He liked the game-worn jerseys. Maybe it helps to have devotion to one team. Then you can revel in all the aspects of that team. All the guys took photos of the busts and memorabilia associated with their favorite team. I don't have a favorite team. I just like the NFL. Like the games. I almost always pick out somebody I want to win, but it's not like I'm a Packer fan, or a Ram fan, or a Giant fan. At the admission desk, they ask your zip code and your favorite team. I said, 73071 and whoever's playing the Redskins. I don't like Daniel Snyder. * The gift shop is big-time good. I could spend a lot of money in there. Old-fashioned pennants and banners for each team were unbelievably cool. A vintage Joe Namath jersey. Lots of good stuff. But I'm never tempted. Didn't buy anything. * The Hall seems to have moved away from some of its ties to the prehistoric era. When I first came 17 years ago, there was a ton of tribute to Jim Thorpe. I even wrote a column about it. Now a huge Thorpe mural adorns the wall and a big Thorpe statue sits in the rotunda, but that's about it. Thorpe was huge in Canton, because he signed with the Canton Bulldogs and helped found what became the NFL. So all in all, I'd have to say I was disappointed. Maybe the Rock 'n Roll Hall of Fame will be better. PRESIDENTIAL MISFIRE When we were down in Columbus, something made us think of President William McKinley and made us assume he was from Ohio, even though we didn't really know. And I forgot to look it up. Then we drove to Canton, and presto, it made sense. Canton McKinley High School. Then we saw the signs. McKinley Library and Museum. So I hatched a plan when we got to the Pro Football Hall of Fame. I told the guys I would take the car, go through the McKinley museum, then come back and get them. That way, I'd see something I'd never seen, and we could save that ridiculous $10 parking charge. But they talked me out of it. Said we'd go through the Hall of Fame, then go to the presidential library. OK. But we left the Hall at 3:50 p.m., looked up the McKinley library, and it closed at 4 p.m. Bummer. As you know, I went to the Truman Library a couple of weeks ago in Kansas City and enjoyed it. And I knew quite a bit about Harry Truman. I don't know much of anything about William McKinley, other than he was assassinated and he was president through the Spanish-American War victory. So I looked it up. Here's a quick history lesson. McKinley was the 25th president, serving from March 4, 1897, to September 1901, six months into his second term. He was assassinated in Buffalo. His vice president, Teddy Roosevelt, became president. McKinley raised protective tariffs (I'm against that) and maintained the gold standard for the U.S. (I'm for that). Even cooler, McKinley was the last president to have served in the Civil War, after which he settled in Canton, practiced law and eventually was elected to Congress. McKinley eventually became Ohio's governor and ran for president in 1896, defeating Democrat William Jennings Bryan. McKinley was generally a popular president, economic growth marked his years in the White House and the Spanish-American War brought the U.S. all kinds of territories, including the Philippines, Puerto Rico and even Hawaii to some degree. But on Sept. 6, 1901, Leon Czolgosz, a second-generation Polish-American, who was part anarchist, gunned down McKinley in Buffalo. I wish I had gone through the museum, so I could know why we remember John Wilkes Booth and Lee Harvey Oswald but not Leon Czolgosz. Next time I'm in Canton, I'll be at the McKinley library, not at the hall of fame that sits next to McKinley's football field. OHIO HILLS Eastern Ohio is not flat. It's hard to find level ground. Lots of rolling hills. The drive from Columbus to Canton was nice, with lots of scenic farms and the such. After we left Canton, we drove through Akron, and the University of Akron's new football stadium (constructed in 2009) sits hard by the interstate. The Zips play at OU in September, and their football stadium is very nice. Looks much more traditional (which means better) than, say, North Texas' new stadium at the I-35 fork in Denton. Akron is coached by Terry Bowden, so there's that angle. Akron played in the historic Rubber Bowl -- Firestone Tires, remember, is headquartered in Akron -- but it was miles from campus and in need of constant renovation. So the school built a new stadium. I've never heard that Akron had a big rival, but Kent State is only 10 miles away. I never realized Kent was so close to the Cleveland/Akron area. I looked it up, and yep, Kent State is the big rival for Akron. I guess I could have asked Darnell Mayberry; he once covered the Zips for the Akron Beacon Journal. Traffic wasn't bad through the Canton/Akron area, despite it being 4-5 p.m. I would have guessed we'd have hit some bad traffic. Akron is a big place. The fifth-largest city in Ohio, trailing the big C's (Columbus, Cleveland, Cincinnati) and Toledo. (Dayton ranks sixth, Canton eighth, Youngstown ninth). The Akron Metropolitan Statistical Area, which I assume includes Canton, had a 2010 population of 703,000. And of course, Akron and Canton are included in Cleveland's metro population, which counts 3.5 million residents and ranks 18th in America. We were headed to a Fairfield Inn in Streetsboro, Ohio, a southeast suburb of Cleveland. Got an $82 rate. We all had some work to do, and Ryan said he needed a drink before we checked in. So I looked it up, and there was a Sonic right across the street from our hotel. Sometimes clean living pays off. LOCAL FARE We had no dining knowledge. None. We could go chain, or go adventuring. So we went adventuring. Walked into a place called Jerzees, a sports grill near the Hall of Fame. It was pretty desolate, but turns out a good choice. They had a chicken wing special; 49 cents each. I got eight wings and fries. Ryan and I ate for $15 combined. Can't beat that. And it was good. For a late dinner, Guerin, Ryan and I drove down the road to a place called Rockne's. Sort of a local Chili's type place. Except I hate Chili's, so don't judge it by that. Yep, the place is named after Knute Rockne, for no good reason that we could tell. Rockne grew up in Chicago, got famous at Notre Dame and was killed by a plane crash in Kansas. Don't know what any of that has to do with Streetsboro, Ohio. The girls working at Rockne's were nice. One of them's grandmother lives in Oklahoma, but she didn't know where. Which I thought was both sad and illuminating. I had a steak salad, which was decent. I wish I had ordered the pork wings. I didn't know pigs had wings. Sort of gives new meaning to the term, when pigs fly. The place was decent. We could have gone to an Applebee's or a Ruby Tuesday, but what's the fun in that? MORE STREAMING In my hotel room, I watched the OU-Stanford women's game on my computer. The internet connection was hit and miss. When I put the game on full screen, it often got fuzzy. When I kept it partial screen, I had a tougher time seeing. I also got a good email from reader Curtis Ray, who tried to educate me on watching games while travelling. I appreciated his suggestions and thought I would pass them on: "I travel a lot and have the regular League Pass through Cox that also includes League Pass Broadband. Good hotel internet equals good quality playback. Obviously, your hotel’s internet was indeed terrible if it was buffering like you described. If the hotel is still using DSL, you’ll have issues. DSL is cheap compared to cable and FIOS, so many hotel owners choose it at their properties to save themselves money as well as force their guests to purchase their overpriced Lodgenet movies they offer instead of allowing guests to stream their own using Netflix, Hulu. Etc. "Now, if the Thunder game is also being shown on NBATV that night, keep in mind that it will not be available on League Pass. Silly rule, but it has something to do with the NBA’s blackout policy. To combat this problem since the Thunder has several NBATV games, I purchased a SlingBox that you can easily connect to your cable or satellite box. I bought mine at Best Buy, but you can get it at other places as well. You can then connect remotely via broadband and stream, watch and control your own TV from anywhere, in HD. So if the Thunder is on NBATV, no problem. I tap into the Slingbox and turn the channel to Cox 722 and watch It on Fox Sports Oklahoma. "Slingbox also has an app so you can watch your home TV from a smartphone or tablet. I sometimes watch local news, an OU or OSU basketball game, or pretty much anything I would watch at home that I cannot get on the hotel TV in whatever city I’m in. "One important detail, though. Whatever TV at home that you hook the Slingbox up to will be the one you control remotely. I now connect mine to my home office TV cable box since no one in my family is watching that one when I’m gone. I used to have it on my bedroom TV, but my wife isn’t a big basketball fan and didn’t want to be forced to watch the Thunder game on that TV when I was connected and watching from out of town. (I still love her though.) "I saw you mention watching the game and the limited screen size of your computer. I always bring an HDMI cable and connect my laptop to one of the hotel TV’s HDMI ports and change the input. Now, you can watch the game on league pass or through the Slingbox on your hotel TV! It’s now like having Fox Sports Oklahoma right there on your hotel TV. There are a handful of hotels that have disabled their remotes or use universal remotes that don’t have the input selector. But you can typically find it the side of the TV itself near the volume and power buttons. "I especially love the league pass app while in Vegas. I can place very small wagers on various NBA games that night and watch them all in my hotel room upstairs instead of having to sit in the sports book with all the idiots. I also like that league pass archives the games, so if I fly or drive at night during a game, I can watch the archive from the start on league pass after arriving at my hotel…that hopefully has decent internet of course. "I’ve been doing this double tiered League Pass/Slingbox method since 2005-2006 when the Hornets were here. Hotel internet was horrific than and is still awful at some properties today. However, if you are fortunate to stay at a hotel with a decent internet speed, you won’t have the buffering and start/stop/start problems." Now that's what I call information. I'm going to be lost for awhile on Slingbox and HDMI cables and the such. But League Pass comes with an archive function? That means when I get to my hotel room Tuesday night, I can hook up and watch Thunder-Lakers from the beginning? It's like DVR on the road. Great information, Curtis.
Mar 19, 2015
Notes and tales from around the NCAA Tournament on Thursday:___BUFFALO MOJOOne thing is for certain about Buffalo coming into the NCAA Tournament: There is no reason for the Bulls to be intimidated by any opponent, including fifth-seeded West Virginia.Buffalo played at Kentucky in its second regular-season game and led the Wildcats 38-33 at half before losing 71-52."It's like have you seen...
Notes and tidbits from around the NCAA Tournament
By The Associated Press, Associated Press | Mar 19, 2015Notes and tales from around the NCAA Tournament on Thursday: ___ BUFFALO MOJO One thing is for certain about Buffalo coming into the NCAA Tournament: There is no reason for the Bulls to be intimidated by any opponent, including fifth-seeded West Virginia. Buffalo played at Kentucky in its second regular-season game and led the Wildcats 38-33 at half before losing 71-52. "It's like have you seen "Space Jam?" Buffalo's Xavier Ford said. "It's like playing against the Monstars." Beating Kentucky for a half didn't provide the Bulls a blueprint for finishing the job. "You got to do everything right against a team like that," Ford said. "No mistakes It's basketball. Any team could get beat on any given night. But a team like that you would have to be doing everything right. I don't know if anybody can answer that question." The Bulls also played at Wisconsin, and led at the half before losing by 12. "We feel like we played the best of the best," Shannon Evans said. "So going into this tournament, we know that we can hang with the best." — Ralph D. Russo ___ CAMEROON TO LAS CRUCES It was only three years ago that Pascal Siakam got serious about basketball, and now he's the second-leading scorer for New Mexico State and the Western Athletic Conference freshman of the year. The native of Douala, Cameroon, thought his future was in soccer until he attended a basketball camp on a lark. Turns out he was a natural, so he dropped soccer and turned his focus to basketball. In 2012, he moved to the United States to attend God's Academy near Dallas, where he played organized ball for the first time. "I was OK," Siakam said Thursday. "It wasn't something real serious. I was playing to have fun, and it gave me an opportunity to come to the United States and continue my education, so I just took it." Siakam knew he could get his education paid for if he were good enough at basketball. His brother James played basketball at Vanderbilt until last year. Pascal has a bright future. The 6-foot-9 forward averages 13 points, a team-best 7.7 rebounds and is one of the top big men in Division I in shooting, at 57.7 percent. "I didn't have a lot of offers," he said. "A lot of people didn't know about me. New Mexico State came, and it's been a great fit for me. There are a lot of international students there, and I felt it could be good for me." — Eric Olson ___ WELCOME HOME, DAMON Arizona assistant coach Damon Stoudamire came home for the Wildcats' NCAA Tournament opener. Stoudamire was born Portland and was a standout at Wilson High School before playing for Arizona from 1991-95. He spent eight seasons playing for the Portland Trail Blazers as a pro. Arizona senior guard T.J. McConnell credited Stoudamire, coach Sean Miller and his father with making him into the point guard he is. "I'm the luckiest guy to have him as a coach," McConnell said about Stoudamire. "Glad we have a chance to let him come back home." The second-seeded Wildcats faced No. 15 seed Texas Southern at the Moda Center, which is the Trail Blazers' home court. — Anne M. Peterson. ___ INJURED RAM Virginia Commonwealth standout guard Briante Weber is not letting a season-ending knee injury stop him from being part of the NCAA Tournament. Weber was as active as anybody during the Rams' practice at Portland's Moda Center a day before seventh-seeded VCU faced No. 10 seed Ohio State in the round of 64. He broke down team huddles and hobbled around the court on crutches, talking to coaches and giving teammates advice. The senior suffered a season-ending right knee injury in a loss to Richmond on Jan. 31, tearing his ACL, MCL and meniscus. Even without the face of its havoc-causing defense, VCU got hot in the Atlantic 10 Tournament and beat Dayton in the title game. The Rams dedicated the championship to their injured leader, who helped cut down the nets during an emotional celebration. Despite his injury, Weber wants to do everything he can to give his team a lift. "It's not easy. There's days where I get down and want to just think about myself," Weber said. "It's definitely bigger than me right now." — Antonio Gonzalez. ___ BO AND BRACKETS Bo Ryan clearly knows basketball. On Tuesday, he was named one of four finalists for the Naismith National Coach of the Year award. Don't, however, ask the Wisconsin coach for help filling out your bracket. First off, he's busy getting the top-seeded Badgers ready for their first NCAA tournament game on Friday night against Coastal Carolina. He wouldn't have much in the way of valuable advice, either. "Have I been asked? Yeah, I've had people ask, but I tell them to just talk to the secretary at the office that won it four of the last five years," Ryan said Tuesday at the Kohl Center in Madison, Wisconsin. "She's better at it then all these experts." Ryan did admit to having students in a class on basketball he once taught at Division III Wisconsin-Platteville fill out brackets "for bragging rights." Ryan would grade them and tell them who won. But he's never filled out a bracket or doled out any serious guidance. "Some people did, like it was a Catholic school, 'Oh, they're going to win.' If it was an animal — a nice cute animal — they were going to pick that team. And those people have won." — Genaro C. Armas. ___ TOURNAMENT POLITICS Everyone knows that politics can be every bit as cutthroat as sports. When you combine the two? Well, you get the spat between New Mexico Attorney General Hector Balderas and Kansas counterpart Derek Schmidt that erupted this week. Balderas brazenly predicted that New Mexico State, the No. 15 seed in the Midwest, would not only knock off second-seeded Kansas in its tournament opener Friday, but then beat seventh-seeded Wichita State — another school from the Sunflower State — to reach the Sweet 16. The Shockers play No. 10 seed Indiana in another second-round game in Omaha, Nebraska. That certainly didn't go over well with Schmidt, who graduated from tradition-rich Kansas. Schmidt called the prediction "baseless" and said that Balderas has much to learn since taking office in January. "As a new attorney general, Mr. Balderas clearly has much to learn about Kansas basketball," Schmidt said. "I wish him all the best in pondering these philosophical matters at length during the free time he will have next week after his team has departed the tournament." — Dave Skretta. ___ HOBBLED GEORGIA Kenny Gaines sat at his locker, his left foot bundled up in a heating pad and warm towels. Yes, the injury bug that plagued Georgia much of the season has followed the Bulldogs to Charlotte for the NCAA Tournament. Gaines sprained the foot in practice and missed the regular-season finale against Auburn. He returned to the lineup against South Carolina in the Southeastern Conference Tournament, only to re-aggravate the injury and miss the semifinal loss to Arkansas. He said he's day to day, and it's unclear how effective he'll be if he plays Friday in the East Region opener against Michigan State. "It's just something that comes with the game," Gaines said. "I mean, it is what it is. You've just got to play through it. We've got a couple of more weeks in the season and I'll be able to find a little rest." Coach Mark Fox said Gaines had treatment when the team arrived at the hotel Wednesday night, then again before breakfast and once more by trying to keep the foot warm before Thursday's practice. Gaines looked OK while shooting with the team at the end of practice, working on catch-and-shoot 3-pointers and one-dribble pull-ups. His status will depend on how his foot responds, though Fox said he expected Gaines would be able to play. Gaines is the team's No. 2 scorer at 11.6 points per game. He's had a bumpy year that included missing much of the preseason due to illness, then suffering a shoulder injury in December that fortunately coincided with a two-week break and didn't keep him out of any games. In all, regular starters have combined for 20 missed games due to injury this year. "I feel like one of these days," Gaines said, "things will turn around for us." — Aaron Beard. ___ BYRDS OF A FEATHER Belmont Bruins coach Rick Byrd's father, Ben, was a former sportswriter whose career helped shape his life — eventually leading to him becoming a basketball coach. Ben Byrd worked for the Knoxville Journal as a beat writer covering Tennessee basketball and SEC football, and he'd regularly bring young Rick to college basketball and football games. As a young boy, Rick would eat it up. He'd sell programs before Tennessee men's basketball games and then scramble just before tipoff to find a seat under the press table by his father's feet, where he would settle in to watch games. "I would go sit under my dad on the edge of the court and watch great basketball games with Adolph Rupp's Kentucky teams and Pete Maravich and that kind of stuff," Byrd said. "I have to give him credit — or blame — for what I ended up doing." — Steve Reed.
PHOENIX (AP) — A person familiar with the negotiations says prospects "look good" for a deal between ex-San Francisco 49ers left guard Mike Iupati (yoo-PAH-tee) and the Arizona Cardinals.The person, who asked not to be identified because agreements officially can't be announced until Tuesday, said the two sides were in promising negotiations for a contract.Iupati started 15 games at left guard...
AP Source: Prospects 'good' for Iupati deal with Arizona
By BOB BAUM, Associated Press | Mar 9, 2015PHOENIX (AP) — A person familiar with the negotiations says prospects "look good" for a deal between ex-San Francisco 49ers left guard Mike Iupati (yoo-PAH-tee) and the Arizona Cardinals. The person, who asked not to be identified because agreements officially can't be announced until Tuesday, said the two sides were in promising negotiations for a contract. Iupati started 15 games at left guard for the 49ers last season and is considered one of the top run blockers in the NFL. His addition could mean a move to right guard for Jonathan Cooper, the former first-round draft pick who has struggled to regain his form after breaking a leg before his rookie season. The 6-foot-5, 331-pound Iupati is a three-time Pro Bowl player and was first-team All-Pro in 2012. He has played all five of his seasons for the 49ers after being drafted in the first round — the 17th pick overall — out of Idaho in 2010. He would add much-needed interior strength to an Arizona team that ranked last in rushing last season. The team also is believed to be looking for a power back — either in free agency or through the draft — to ease the pressure on Andre Ellington, who took a beating last year trying to be the team's primary runner despite a season-long foot injury. Cooper was slated to play left guard after being drafted seventh overall in 2013. But he was slow to come back from the leg injury and played only sparingly last season. Although his pass blocking is not nearly as highly regarded as his devastating run blocking, Iupati would line up next to tackle Jared Veldheer, giving Arizona a formidable left side of the line. There were reports that, in addition to the 49ers, Buffalo, Oakland, the New York Jets, Buffalo and Minnesota all were interested in signing Iupati. Iupati, from American Samoa, played high school football in Anaheim, California, but was lightly recruited, choosing to go to Idaho, where he built his reputation as one of the nation's top collegiate linemen. ___ AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and www.twitter.com/AP_NFL
Mar 4, 2015
Chip Kelly's latest bold move is another example of his coaching philosophy: "Culture beats scheme."Two people familiar with the deal told The Associated Press the Philadelphia Eagles have agreed to trade star running back LeSean McCoy to the Buffalo Bills for linebacker Kiko Alonso. Both people spoke under condition of anonymity on Tuesday because the teams had not announced the deal.Kelly...
With McCoy trade, Kelly proves every player expendable
By ROB MAADDI, Associated Press | Mar 4, 2015Chip Kelly's latest bold move is another example of his coaching philosophy: "Culture beats scheme." Two people familiar with the deal told The Associated Press the Philadelphia Eagles have agreed to trade star running back LeSean McCoy to the Buffalo Bills for linebacker Kiko Alonso. Both people spoke under condition of anonymity on Tuesday because the teams had not announced the deal. Kelly hasn't won a playoff game in two seasons in the NFL, but he isn't afraid to make unpopular decisions. Last year, he cut three-time Pro Bowl wide receiver DeSean Jackson after a career season. Now, he's trading away a two-time All-Pro for a talented but injury-prone player. ESPN first reported the trade. It can't be completed until the 2015 league season begins next Tuesday. McCoy, who played high school, college and pro football in Pennsylvania, could refuse to go to Buffalo. Since taking full control of all personnel moves away from former general manager Howie Roseman in the offseason, Kelly has been busy reshaping a team that won 10 games in each of his first two seasons. He released longtime starting offensive lineman Todd Herremans and third-string tight end James Casey last week. He cut starting cornerback Cary Williams hours before the McCoy trade. Trading McCoy is a big risk for Kelly, who firmly believes players in his system are replaceable. McCoy thrived in Kelly's up-tempo offense in 2013, leading the NFL with a franchise-record 1,607 yards rushing. His production, along with the rest of the offense, slipped in 2014 and he finished with 1,319 yards. Inconsistency and injuries on the offensive line were a major factor. It was never clear how much the 26-year-old McCoy and Kelly got along. McCoy said Kelly pushed him harder than any coach he had. "Chip is constantly on me," McCoy said last August. Kelly later created a stir when he said McCoy sometimes practices "not so great." It is clear, however, that Kelly wants guys who buy everything he's selling. He has a unique approach that includes practice on Tuesdays — an off day for every other team in the league — and tougher practices instead of walkthroughs the day before the game. Whatever the relationship with Kelly, McCoy is gone. Kelly gets another player he's quite familiar with in Alonso. The 24-year-old played for Kelly at Oregon. He had an outstanding rookie year after Buffalo selected him in the second round in 2013. But he tore the ACL in his left knee and missed the 2014 season. Alonso tore the ACL in his right knee at Oregon in 2010. He also had hip surgery last offseason. Kelly could be gearing up to make a run at another one of his former players. Talk about Heisman Trophy winner Marcus Mariota coming to the Eagles has dominated conversations in Philadelphia. The Eagles would have to trade up from No. 20 in the first round of the draft to get the Oregon quarterback, who is projected to go as high as No. 1 or 2. A blockbuster deal to get Mariota was highly unlikely when Roseman was the GM because he values draft picks. But with Kelly calling the shots, anything is possible. The Eagles currently have about $41 million available under the adjusted 2015 salary cap, so expect them to be quite active when free agency begins next week. They now need a new running back, two starting cornerbacks and plenty of defensive help. Overall, they saved nearly $21 million under the salary cap on four moves: $7.5 million for McCoy, $6.5 million for Williams, $4 million for Casey and $2.8 million for Herremans. More money-saving cuts are expected. Releasing linebackers DeMeco Ryans ($6.9) and Trent Cole ($8.4 million) would save an additional $15.3 million. ___ AP Sports Writer John Wawrow contributed to this report. ___ Follow Rob Maaddi on Twitter: https://twitter.com/AP_RobMaaddi ___ AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and www.twitter.com/AP_NFL
Chip Kelly has no problem getting rid of talented players.Last year, he cut three-time Pro Bowl wide receiver DeSean Jackson after a career season. Now, he's trading away two-time All-Pro running back LeSean McCoy.Two people familiar with the deal told The Associated Press the Eagles have agreed to trade McCoy to the Buffalo Bills for linebacker Kiko Alonso. Both people spoke under condition of...
Chip Kelly proves every player is expendable in his system
By ROB MAADDI, Associated Press | Mar 3, 2015Chip Kelly has no problem getting rid of talented players. Last year, he cut three-time Pro Bowl wide receiver DeSean Jackson after a career season. Now, he's trading away two-time All-Pro running back LeSean McCoy. Two people familiar with the deal told The Associated Press the Eagles have agreed to trade McCoy to the Buffalo Bills for linebacker Kiko Alonso. Both people spoke under condition of anonymity on Tuesday because the teams had not announced the deal. ESPN first reported the trade. It can't be completed until the 2015 league season begins next Tuesday. McCoy, who played high school, college and pro football in Pennsylvania, could refuse to go to Buffalo. Since taking full control of all personnel moves away from former general manager Howie Roseman in the offseason, Kelly has been busy reshaping a team that won 10 games in each of his first two seasons in the NFL. He released longtime starting offensive lineman Todd Herremans and third-string tight end James Casey last week. He cut starting cornerback Cary Williams hours before the McCoy trade. Trading McCoy is a big risk for Kelly, who firmly believes players in his system are replaceable. McCoy thrived in Kelly's up-tempo offense in 2013, leading the NFL with a franchise-record 1,607 yards rushing. His production, along with the rest of the offense, slipped in 2014 and he finished with 1,319 yards. Inconsistency and injuries on the offensive line were a major factor. It was never clear how much the 26-year-old McCoy and Kelly got along. McCoy said Kelly pushed him harder than any coach he had. "Chip is constantly on me," McCoy said last August. Kelly later created a stir when he said McCoy sometimes practices "not so great." Whatever the relationship, McCoy is gone. Kelly gets another player he's quite familiar with in Alonso. The injury-prone linebacker played for Kelly at Oregon. He had an outstanding rookie year after Buffalo selected him in the second round in 2013. But he tore the ACL in his left knee and missed the 2014 season. Alonso tore the ACL in his right knee at Oregon in 2010. He also had hip surgery last offseason. Kelly could be gearing up to make a run at another one of his former players. Talk about Heisman Trophy winner Marcus Mariota coming to the Eagles has dominated conversations in Philadelphia. The Eagles would have to trade up from No. 20 in the first round of the draft to get Mariota, who is projected to go as high as No. 1 or 2. A blockbuster deal to get Mariota was highly unlikely when Roseman was the GM because he values draft picks. But with Kelly calling the shots, anything is possible. The Eagles currently have about $41 million available under the adjusted 2015 salary cap, so expect them to be quite active when free agency begins next week. They now need a new running back, two starting cornerbacks and plenty of defensive help. Overall, they saved nearly $21 million under the salary cap on four moves: $7.5 million for McCoy, $6.5 million for Williams, $4 million for Casey and $2.8 million for Herremans. More money-saving cuts are expected. Releasing linebackers DeMeco Ryans ($6.9) and Trent Cole ($8.4 million) would save an additional $15.3 million. ___ AP Sports Writer John Wawrow contributed to this report. ___ Follow Rob Maaddi on Twitter: https://twitter.com/AP_RobMaaddi ___ AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and www.twitter.com/AP_NFL
Mar 2, 2015
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (AP) — Nick Hundley started last season in San Diego, finished it in Baltimore and then signed with Colorado.A dizzying year for the veteran catcher? Not so much for the son of a college football coach."That's something I'm used to," Hundley said Monday. "I went to four elementary schools, four high schools."When deciding where to sign over the winter, Hundley remembered...
Rockies turn to Hundley, son of a coach, to guide pitchers
By MIKE CRANSTON, Associated Press | Mar 2, 2015SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (AP) — Nick Hundley started last season in San Diego, finished it in Baltimore and then signed with Colorado. A dizzying year for the veteran catcher? Not so much for the son of a college football coach. "That's something I'm used to," Hundley said Monday. "I went to four elementary schools, four high schools." When deciding where to sign over the winter, Hundley remembered fondly being a teenager in Boulder when his father, Tim, was the defensive line coach at Colorado from 1996-98. The 31-year-old Hundley said he told his agent to put the Rockies at the top of the list. The Rockies, desperate for better defense and a steady hand to work with their troubled pitching staff, pounced. Colorado called on the first day of free agency and they agreed on a two-year, $6.25 million deal. "We did a lot of homework on Nick, and there's a reason why we went out and got him," manager Walt Weiss said. "He really takes pride in being able to connect with the staff and run a staff, to get a staff through a tough inning or a tough game," Weiss said. "Those are his strengths." The Rockies need all those things. During a 2014 season marred by injuries, Colorado used 15 starting pitchers and sported the majors' highest ERA at 4.84 on the way to 96 losses. While former starting catcher Wilin Rosario has hit 62 home runs over the past three seasons, he's also collected 42 passed balls. He threw out seven of 44 base stealers last season. The Rockies decided to trade offense for better defense. Rosario, who has acknowledged he could be traded, will get work at first base and is no longer a lock for the 25-man roster. Michael McKenry is also contending for the backup job. Hundley is eager for the chance to be an everyday catcher after losing that job in San Diego before he was traded in May. He got to experience the postseason for the first time last year with the Orioles, while hitting a combined .243 with six home runs. But his defense is what the Rockies coveted. He's known as a good framer of pitches and has only 32 passed balls in 516 games. "Always having a good catcher is going to benefit the team," closer LaTroy Hawkins said. "I've heard great things about him. He can definitely throw runners out." Hundley is meticulous in learning pitchers, watching video and gathering information from various sources for hitter scouting reports. Those traits could come from his dad. Tim Hundley has been at it for more than 40 years, most recently at UNLV. And that meant a lot of moving for his family. Nick Hundley was born when his father was at Oregon State. He finished high school in the Seattle area when his father was at Washington. He also spent some of his childhood in Los Angeles (UCLA) and Boulder, when Tim Hundley worked for former Buffaloes coach Rick Neuheisel. That drew him to Denver, along with what he thinks is the potential of a maligned pitching staff that's getting healthy. "I don't look at last year. I don't think that's very conducive to what we're doing," Hundley said. "I think the stuff that people in this room possess is on par with anybody in the league. So if we can go and command that stuff, I think we'll be really tough to beat." NOTES: SS Troy Tulowitzki (hip) and RF Carlos Gonzalez (knee) ran the bases Monday for the first time since their surgeries. Weiss said they could appear in spring games earlier than expected, but declined to set dates. ... Tulowitzki and Gonzalez ran before rain moved most of the workout indoors. ... The Rockies will hold an intrasquad scrimmage Tuesday. ... Jordan Lyles will start Wednesday's Cactus League opener against Arizona. Jhoulys Chacin, Kyle Kendrick and Jorge De La Rosa are scheduled to start the following three days.
Oklahoma State football: Seven things we learned from Mike Gundy's interview on Triple Play Sports RadioFeb 27, 2015
STILLWATER — Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy has been allowed little rest since the Cowboys capped the 2014 season with a Cactus Bowl victory against Washington. He can thank another offseason marked by an assistant coaching carousel for that. A quick refresher for how it all went down. — Cornerbacks coach Van Malone accepted the […]
Oklahoma State football: Seven things we learned from Mike Gundy's interview on Triple Play Sports Radio
Kyle Fredrickson | Feb 27, 2015[img url=http://blog.newsok.com/dittocontent/uploads/sites/11/2015/02/149ed22bcaaa1c1c22a77edbc4390026.jpg]3587289[/img] STILLWATER — Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy has been allowed little rest since the Cowboys capped the 2014 season with a Cactus Bowl victory against Washington. He can thank another offseason marked by an assistant coaching carousel for that. A quick refresher for how it all went down. — Cornerbacks coach Van Malone accepted the defensive coordinator position at SMU. He was replaced by former Houston running backs coach Dan Hammerschmidt. — Offensive line coach Bob Connelly took the same job at USC. He was replaced by former Youngstown State coach Eric Wolford, who left shortly after for an assistant position with the San Fransisco 49ers. He was replaced by former Buffalo Bills tight ends coach Greg Adkins. — Receivers coach Jason Ray was dismissed. He was replaced by former Montana State assistant Jason McEndoo, who is expected to work with offensive line and tight ends. — Running backs coach Jemal Singleton left for the same job, plus special teams coordination, at Arkansas. He was replaced by former Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterbacks coach Marcus Arroyo. Gundy was interviewed Friday morning by OSU sideline reporter Robert Allen on Triple Play Sports Radio. Here are seven things we learned from Gundy during their discussion: 1. Logistics can be an issue when inviting coaching candidates to Stillwater for interviews. “When you’re in Stillwater, it’s not easy to get them in here to visit with them. You’ve got to get on a plane to get to Oklahoma City and Tulsa. It takes two hours to get them here, then the time you spend with them, then you’ve got to get them back to the airport in most cases the next day to get out of here. It just takes a little more time than what most of us are comfortable with.” 2. Respecting other programs in the hiring process was important. “We could do some of this prior to recruiting. I don’t really believe in that. I don’t think it’s fair to take a coach off another head coach’s staff where a guy has recruited a young man for over a year and then all of the sudden he’s not there at the last second. At some point, I have kind of a soft heart there, and it probably works against us at Oklahoma State a little bit, but I think it’s the right thing to do.” 3. Singleton’s decision to take the Arkansas job was met with mixed emotions. “He got a promotion in our world being he’s in charge of the special teams and is going to be the play caller in that area. We were happy and thrilled for Jemal and hate to lose him. He’s been really a good football coach and a loyal coach with his family to Oklahoma State football. But that threw me a curve ball.” 4. Athletic Director Mike Holder showed flexibility during the hiring process. “He understood what my vision is for the future of Oklahoma State football, trying to stay on the cutting edge of different areas … There’s some financial restrictions at times, but for the most part without making it sound bad, he was willing to open the checkbook.” 5. Adkins and McEndoo will work together on the offensive front. “(McEndoo) will come in and work with our tight ends and (be) another set of eyes on the field, and in game planning with offensive line play, and he’ll work with Greg .” 6. Arroyo is versatile enough to coach running backs. “You bring a guy in to coach running backs that has got experience doing everything. He’s experienced in the NFL in the passing game. And most coaches that hang around the NFL have to be football junkies and have to understand the game very well.” 7. Although he can’t go out on the road, Wyatt is considered a Texas recruiting specialist. “I’m not sure that there’s anybody in this part of the country that knows more about the state of Texas in recruiting, knows more about the high school coaches, the way things work. You’re talking about a guy that has coached at Oklahoma State, he’s coached at Oklahoma, he’s coached at Kansas, he’s coached at Texas … I would suspect that one year here and he’ll be back in the coaching ranks.”
Feb 16, 2015
Only 15 major-college football teams changed coaches for 2015. That’s down from most years. There were 20 changes last season alone. Of the 15 hires this season, most were solid. A few duds, but most made sense. Most are promising. Let’s rank the 15 hires. Michigan: Jim Harbaugh replaces Brady Hoke. Everything Harbaugh touches turns […]
From Jim Harbaugh to a high school coach, ranking the college football hires
Berry Tramel | Feb 16, 2015[img url=http://blog.newsok.com/dittocontent/uploads/sites/3/2015/02/jim-harbaugh.jpg]3575958[/img] Only 15 major-college football teams changed coaches for 2015. That's down from most years. There were 20 changes last season alone. Of the 15 hires this season, most were solid. A few duds, but most made sense. Most are promising. Let's rank the 15 hires. Michigan: Jim Harbaugh replaces Brady Hoke. Everything Harbaugh touches turns to gold balls. Or lots of wins. San Diego U. Stanford. The 49ers. No reason to believe the Wolverines won't soar with Harbaugh, although it might not be for long. Houston: Tom Herman replaces Tony Levine. Urban Meyer's offensive coordinator at Ohio State. How did that turn out in 2014, when the Buckeyes twice had to switch quarterbacks on the fly? Plus, Herman has Texas ties, having coached at Texas Lutheran, Texas (as a graduate assistant), Sam Houston State, Texas State and Rice. Oregon State: Gary Andersen replaces Mike Riley. Beavers are the lucky recipient of a coach who was at a better job but wanted out because of circumstances. Andersen and Wisconsin just weren't a fit. He's more of a Western guy, having been raised and bred in Utah. SMU: Chad Morris replaces June Jones. Just what the Mustangs needed -- a hungry, offensive-minded coach with Texas ties. Morris is not all that far removed, 2009, from coaching Texas high school football. Buffalo: Lance Leipold replaces Jeff Quinn. Leipold coached Wisconsin-Whitewater to six of the last eight NCAA Division III championships. Big difference between non-scholarship Division III and I-A, but it's not like Leipold jumped to Ohio State. He's at Buffalo. Wisconsin: Paul Chryst replaces Gary Andersen. The Badgers need a coach that knows the kind of job waiting in Madison. Chryst knows, having been Bret Bielema's offensive coordinator at Wisconsin. Plus Chryst was a decent head coach at Pitt. Nebraska: Mike Riley replaces Bo Pelini. Riley was an excellent coach at Oregon State but had lost some sizzle. The Huskers were in need not only of a good coach, but a guy who could mesh into the good graces of the Corn Kingdom after the PR disaster of Bo Pelini. And Riley is a world-class nice guy. Pitt: Pat Narduzzi replaces Paul Chryst. Mark Dantonio's defensive coordinator has been bred for a hardscrabble job like Pittsburgh. Narduzzi grew up in Youngstown, Ohio, and in college played for his father, who was head coach at Youngstown State from 1975-85. Troy: Neal Brown replaces Larry Blakeney. Brown once was the offensive coordinator for long-time Troy coach Blakeney, then left to spread his wings at Texas Tech and Kentucky. Tulsa: Philip Montgomery replaces Bill Blankenship. This will be the first year of Montgomery's life outside the state of Texas. But Tulsa is not that much different, and Montgomery has coached with Art Briles at rebuilding jobs Houston and Baylor. Florida: Jim McElwain replaces Will Muschamp. Generally, I don't think it's a good idea to take a step down in coaching, and I sort of think the Gators have. McElwain did a good job at Colorado State, but is he better than Muschamp? Central Michigan: John Bonamego replaces Dan Enos. Bonamego was hired off the Detroit Lions staff, which always is a coup for a Mid-American Conference school. And Bonamego is a CMU alumnus. But he hasn't coached college in 17 years. That could be dicey. Kansas: David Beaty replaces Charlie Weis. Beaty must interview well. His resume isn't superb; he was a high school coach from 1994-2005. But Beaty, hired off the Texas A&M staff, did two stints at Kansas, with Mark Mangino 2008-09 and with Turner Gill in 2011. Colorado State: Mike Bobo replaces Jim McElwain. In 2000, Bobo was on the staff at Jacksonville State. Every other year of his life has been spent in the state of Georgia, notably Athens, where Bobo once was Georgia's quarterback and most recently was Mark Richt's offensive coordinator. Nevada-Las Vegas: Tony Sanchez replaces Bobby Hauck. Sanchez was hired out of the high school ranks, Vegas powerhouse Bishop Gorman. Seems like a bad idea.
Feb 14, 2015
The scenery will change, but some UAB football players forced to look for new schools after their program was shuttered in December will remain teammates next season.While opponents of UAB President Ray Watts' move have been voicing their objections to University of Alabama system trustees, players had to weigh the option of staying at the school on scholarship or transferring without having to...
Ex-UAB players trying to stick together at their new schools
By STEVE MEGARGEE, Associated Press | Feb 14, 2015The scenery will change, but some UAB football players forced to look for new schools after their program was shuttered in December will remain teammates next season. While opponents of UAB President Ray Watts' move have been voicing their objections to University of Alabama system trustees, players had to weigh the option of staying at the school on scholarship or transferring without having to sit out the 2015 season. "It was kind of like a death in the family," former UAB guard Cameron Blankenship said. "For the first couple of days, there's disbelief and you're mourning. After that, we kind of had to move along and try to find somewhere else to go." More than 40 players have done just that and landed elsewhere, and dozens have found familiar faces at their new campuses. Blankenship is one of seven former players to transfer to South Alabama. The list includes Cody Clements, UAB's starting quarterback in 2014. Offensive coordinator Bryant Vincent and tight ends coach Richard Owens took over the same positions at South Alabama. "It's a huge help just having those familiar faces next to you," Clements said. "When you're in a new surrounding and new environment and there are so many different things around you that you're not familiar with, to have someone to lean on and kind of help you get through it is definitely helpful." Georgia State has six players from UAB. Buffalo, Indiana, Western Kentucky and Football Championship Subdivision programs Arkansas-Pine Bluff and Chattanooga also added multiple UAB players. "There's always safety in numbers, right?" Georgia State coach Trent Miles said. "You always feel comfortable when you go someplace, and there are familiar people. ... They've kind of blended right in. Every time I look around, all the UAB guys are hanging out with guys who've already been here. They've mixed in with kind of the general population of our team and have gotten along great." UAB ended its program just as it was finishing a breakthrough season. The Blazers went 6-6 last fall after nine straight losing seasons. The move has drawn criticism on campus. Since the decision, Watts has received no-confidence votes from faculty groups and student government leaders. The day the school announced football was closing, Blazers coach Bill Clark said he got calls from coaches ready to pursue his players. "There were just a few guys (who did that)," Clark said. "It wasn't real smart. I understand recruiting and have been doing it for a while, but that wasn't a good move." In the ensuing days, numerous coaches arrived on UAB's campus. Wide receiver Nyiakki Height, who transferred to Georgia State, said it was like being a high school recruit again. "It was a frenzy after that happened," Clements said. "You have coaches all over the place kind of like roaches trying to pick up the pieces and get some guys to help their programs." Some players moved up to Power 5 schools. Running back Jordan Howard headed to Indiana after rushing for 1,587 yards this past season. Linebacker Jake Ganus, who led UAB in tackles, is now at Georgia. Offensive tackle Victor Salako ended up at Oklahoma State. Others had a tougher time finding new schools. Clark even staged the equivalent of a tryout camp, allowing his players to work out in front of coaches from various schools. That proved particularly beneficial for those who hadn't played much. "We just wanted to do what was best for the kids," Clark said. "We tried to put our feelings out of it and say, 'Look, we've got to get these guys taken care of. They're our family and our responsibility.' " Clark also had to ponder his next move. He does not plan to coach in 2015 but intends to return eventually. Clark saw his former players last weekend at a team banquet and realized how much he'd miss them. "It was hard to see those guys," Clark said. "We felt we had so much potential for next year. It was hard. But at the same time, I'm going to look forward to watching our guys perform. That's what I'm going to be doing. I'm going to be out watching, studying and learning and trying to make myself a better coach."
ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) — Jim Harbaugh's first recruiting class at Michigan received tepid reviews.The Wolverines confirmed 14 members of their 2015 class Wednesday, their first since Harbaugh took over as coach in late December amid considerable fanfare. Michigan's small class was ranked well outside the top 25 by both Scout and Rivals, underscoring the challenge Harbaugh faced in securing...
Michigan announces 14 members of Harbaugh's first class
By NOAH TRISTER, Associated Press | Feb 4, 2015ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) — Jim Harbaugh's first recruiting class at Michigan received tepid reviews. The Wolverines confirmed 14 members of their 2015 class Wednesday, their first since Harbaugh took over as coach in late December amid considerable fanfare. Michigan's small class was ranked well outside the top 25 by both Scout and Rivals, underscoring the challenge Harbaugh faced in securing recruits after being hired just over a month before signing day. Harbaugh took over at Michigan after four seasons in the NFL. He was previously a coach at Stanford, so the recruiting process was by no means foreign to him. "Somebody just asked me the question, did I just go right into it and pick up right where I left off at Stanford? No, I did not," he said. "I picked up two days after an NFL season and had to familiarize yourself with who the players are, high school coaches again. Had not spent the whole fall evaluating tape. I had been coaching the San Francisco 49ers. It took some time." The Wolverines did land quarterback Zach Gentry of Albuquerque, New Mexico. Tight end Tyrone Wheatley Jr. also signed with Michigan, and quarterback Alex Malzone of Bloomfield Hills joins the Wolverines after being named The Associated Press player of the year in Michigan in Division 1-2. Wide receiver Brian Cole of Saginaw is another solid prospect Michigan landed from inside the state, where the Wolverines face increasing competition from Michigan State and others. "One of the very favorite players in this class," Harbaugh said of Cole. "He has a special gift of personality and class and humility, and he is a real winner with great parents. This is a class with great families and great parents. We talked about the branch not falling too far from the tree — we have some incredible youngsters." Although this class isn't turning too many heads nationally, the cupboard shouldn't be bare this season in Ann Arbor by any means. Harbaugh's predecessor, Brady Hoke, landed the nation's fourth-ranked recruiting class in 2012 and the second-ranked class in 2013, according to Scout. Michigan does need to resolve its quarterback situation after losing senior Devin Gardner. Gentry and Malzone may have bright futures. "I will start with Alex. As I have said, another example of somebody who has been a winner. Everything he does, he wins. Excellent thrower of the football. He has a real savvy in the pocket. I think his accuracy is outstanding," Harbaugh said. "Zach is also very talented. He is very fast, he has some real physical attributes that not every quarterback has, and he is somebody that works extremely hard at the game — especially during the offseason — on his technique, on his throwing. I am excited about both Alex and Zach." ___ MICHIGAN Top 25 Class: No Best in class: Brian Cole, WR, Saginaw, Mich. Best of the rest: Tyree Kinnel, DB, Huber Heights, Ohio Late addition: Tyrone Wheatley Jr., TE, Buffalo, N.Y. One that got away: Mike Weber, RB, Detroit (Ohio State)
Oklahoma State football: Cowboys add much-needed running back to 2015 class with Jeff Carr (Temple, Texas)
Jeff Carr envisioned himself as a Big 12 tailback. So, the 5-foot-8, 170-pound speedster from Temple High School (Texas) brushed off scholarship offers from mid-major and I-AA schools. With just four days left until National Signing Day, Carr was still waiting for the right opportunity.
Oklahoma State football: Cowboys add much-needed running back to 2015 class with Jeff Carr (Temple, Texas)
Kyle Fredrickson | Feb 1, 2015. Jeff Carr envisioned himself as a Big 12 tailback. So, the 5-foot-8, 170-pound speedster from Temple High School (Texas) brushed off scholarship offers from mid-major and I-AA schools. With just four days left until National Signing Day, Carr was still waiting for the right opportunity. "He stepped away on faith," said Temple coach Mike Spradlin. The decision paid off. Carr tweeted late Saturday he committed to Oklahoma State. . I have officially committed to Oklahoma state university — Juke God (@PbaJeffCarr) January 31, 2015 . Carr told gopokes.com how it came together: "I really didn’t have anything going. You know, they had their running back (Ronald Jones) decommit and go to USC. “Coach Hammer (Dan Hammerschmidt) knew about me, and he had been coaching the running backs at Houston. He and Coach (Jemal) Singleton, the running backs coach, put my name out there and it happened this afternoon. I don’t even know what time. I’m excited and I know I can play in the Big 12.” Carr goes by the name "Juke God" on Twitter (@PbaJeffCarr) and has a highlight tape to match. His ability to make horizontal cuts and burst upfield is apparent from the first play. . . "He's an absolutely unbelievable athlete," Spradlin said. "His speed and his ability to make guys miss is unlike anybody I've ever coached. It's just crazy." Carr rushed for 1,710 on 179 carries on Temple's run all the way to the 5A Division I state championship last season. But while Temple quarterback Chad President (a four-star rated Baylor, then Tulsa, pledge) received five Division-I offers, Carr was often overlooked. Those power programs might have had concerns about what Carr couldn't control -- his smaller-than-average stature for an every-down Big 12 tailback. "In Jeff's case, it's kind of an asset for him," Spradlin said. "But some schools are more interested in size than others." OSU was one of a few teams that made a late push for Carr. Spradlin says Kansas ramped up its efforts this past week and Texas Tech showed interest during the summer. But Spradlin called OSU, "a great fit," and says Carr shouldn't give the Cowboys any trouble on or off the field. "He's not a low maintenance guy," Spradlin said. "He's a no maintenance guy." WHAT IT MEANS FOR OSU While Carr's commitment solidifies a missing piece of OSU coach Mike Gundy's now 19-member 2015 recruiting class, don't expect the Cowboys to stop their pursuit of other running backs. Carr is a nice addition to the returning corps alongside rising junior Rennie Childs and rising redshirt freshman Sione Palelei. But the Cowboys could use a more prototypical power back as well. Here's where OSU currently stands on three more potential tailback prospects. Chris Carson (Butler Community College, Kan.): Carson told the Atlanta Journal Constitution last week that he is "70-to-80 percent" committed to Georgia. But he also said, "I've got to think about the playing time I'm going to get at Georgia. I know they have plenty of depth at running back." . Oklahoma st visit #6⃣Era pic.twitter.com/bQ3vJ78YHM — Chris Carson 〽️ (@chriscarson29) January 25, 2015 . Carson, who has been vocal about his desire to play in the NFL, explained the Cowboys' recruiting pitch. "They didn't really show me the UGA depth chart," Carson said. "They went down the list of past running backs that UGA had and the past running backs that they had (at OSU). They said they put more running backs in the NFL than UGA over the last 10 years. They showed me that, and they showed me how they had more 1,000-yard rushers than UGA over that period." Carson said he would make his choice by the end of the week. Devonte Williams (Bullis School, Md.): Williams, a Marshall commit, tweeted late Thursday that Oklahoma State offered him a scholarship. He's a three-star rated recruit and the Cowboys were the first from the Big 12 to jump in. . Just received an Offer from Oklahoma State #Big12 http://t.co/ybJH4G1Q20 — Devonte williams (@TheMatrix1_) January 29, 2015 . Williams made an official visit to Indiana this weekend. SMU, Hawaii and Buffalo have also offered scholarships, per Rivals. Chris Warren (Rockwall High School, Texas): Warren made official visits to Texas Tech, Oklahoma State and Washington. Now, he has a decision to make. He tweeted (@scorealldayCW25) on Sunday his appreciation of those who recruited him through the process: . I have the utmost respect for the coaches that I have come in contact with these past couple of weeks, I really appreciate your hospitality — Chris Warren III (@ScorealldayCW25) February 1, 2015
The 5-foot-8, 170-pound speedster from Temple High School (Texas) brushed off scholarship offers from mid-major and I-AA schools. With just four days left until National Signing Day, Carr was still waiting for the right opportunity.
Oklahoma State football: OSU commit Jeff Carr envisioned himself as a Big 12 tailback
By Kyle Fredrickson | Feb 1, 2015Jeff Carr envisioned himself as a Big 12 tailback. So, the 5-foot-8, 170-pound speedster from Temple High School (Texas) brushed off scholarship offers from mid-major and I-AA schools. With just four days left until National Signing Day, Carr was still waiting for the right opportunity. “He stepped away on faith,” said Temple coach Mike Spradlin. The decision paid off. Carr tweeted late Saturday he committed to Oklahoma State. He told gopokes.com how it came together: “I really didn't have anything going. You know, they had their running back (Ronald Jones) decommit and go to USC. “Coach Hammer (Dan Hammerschmidt) knew about me, and he had been coaching the running backs at Houston. He and Coach (Jemal) Singleton, the running backs coach, put my name out there and it happened this afternoon. I don't even know what time. I'm excited and I know I can play in the Big 12.” Carr goes by the name “Juke God” on Twitter (@PbaJeffCarr) and has a highlight tape to match. His ability to make horizontal cuts and burst upfield is apparent from the first play. “He’s an absolutely unbelievable athlete,” Spradlin said. “His speed and his ability to make guys miss is unlike anybody I’ve ever coached. It’s just crazy.” Carr rushed for 1,710 yards on 179 carries on Temple’s run all the way to the 5A Division I state championship last season. But while Temple quarterback Chad President (a four-star rated Baylor, then Tulsa, pledge) received five Division-I offers, Carr was often overlooked. Those power programs might have had concerns about what Carr couldn’t control — his smaller-than-average stature for an every-down Big 12 tailback. “In Jeff’s case, it’s kind of an asset for him,” Spradlin said. “But some schools are more interested in size than others.” OSU was one of a few teams that made a late push for Carr. Spradlin says Kansas ramped up its efforts this past week and Texas Tech showed interest during the summer. But Spradlin called OSU, “a great fit,” and says Carr shouldn’t give the Cowboys any trouble on or off the field. “He’s not a low maintenance guy,” Spradlin said. “He’s a no maintenance guy.” WHAT IT MEANS FOR OSU While Carr’s commitment solidifies a missing piece of OSU coach Mike Gundy’s now 19-member 2015 recruiting class, don’t expect the Cowboys to stop their pursuit of other running backs. Carr is a nice addition to the returning corps alongside rising junior Rennie Childs and rising redshirt freshman Sione Palelei. But the Cowboys could use a more prototypical power back as well. Here’s where OSU currently stands on three more potential tailback prospects. Chris Carson (Butler Community College, Kan.): Carson told the Atlanta Journal Constitution last week that he is “70-to-80 percent” committed to Georgia. But he also said, “I’ve got to think about the playing time I’m going to get at Georgia. I know they have plenty of depth at running back.” Carson, who has been vocal about his desire to play in the NFL, explained the Cowboys’ recruiting pitch. “They didn’t really show me the UGA depth chart,” Carson said. “They went down the list of past running backs that UGA had and the past running backs that they had (at OSU). They said they put more running backs in the NFL than UGA over the last 10 years. They showed me that, and they showed me how they had more 1,000-yard rushers than UGA over that period.” Carson said he would make his choice by the end of the week. Devonte Williams (Bullis School, Md.): Williams, a Marshall commit, tweeted late Thursday that Oklahoma State offered him a scholarship. He’s a three-star rated recruit and the Cowboys were the first from the Big 12 to jump in. Williams made an official visit to Indiana this weekend. SMU, Hawaii and Buffalo have also offered scholarships, per Rivals. Chris Warren (Rockwall High School, Texas): Warren made official visits to Texas Tech, Oklahoma State and Washington. Now, he has a decision to make. He tweeted (@scorealldayCW25) on Sunday his appreciation of those who recruited him through the process: I have the utmost respect for the coaches that I have come in contact with these past couple of weeks, I really appreciate your hospitality.
NORMAN — Oklahoma is looking for an offensive coordinator, and Bob Stoops said he wants the person he hires to be someone with experience and a proven system. I published a list of 11 candidates who seem to make sense for a variety of reasons, and one of them — TCU co-offensive coordinator Sonny Cumbie […]
Oklahoma football: Could Greg Roman be a good offensive coordinator candidate?
Jason Kersey | Jan 8, 2015NORMAN -- Oklahoma is looking for an offensive coordinator, and Bob Stoops said he wants the person he hires to be someone with experience and a proven system. I published a list of 11 candidates who seem to make sense for a variety of reasons, and one of them -- TCU co-offensive coordinator Sonny Cumbie -- was apparently in town yesterday visiting with OU coaches. But I got an interesting email this morning from Brian Kardokus, an old friend and teammate of mine at Noble High School. He's a big OU fan, and sent along an idea for another candidate, one I hadn't thought about. Brian wanted to know if Greg Roman might be considered a candidate at OU. "Could you imagine Perine and Knight running that power run game vs. the light Big 12 defenses?" Brian wrote. Roman has been the San Francisco 49ers' offensive coordinator since 2011. Before that, he was on Jim Harbaugh's staff at Stanford. With Harbaugh leaving to take the Michigan job, Roman has become somewhat of a hot candidate around the NFL. According to this San Francisco Chronicle report, Roman has interviewed for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' offensive coordinator job and will interview for Buffalo's head coaching gig. So it sounds like Roman is probably going to stay in the NFL. Still, with the way big-time colleges are willing to pay, it doesn't seem totally out of the realm of possibility that Stoops might try for an NFL guy to run his offense. Heck, Georgia just hired Brian Schottenheimer as its offensive coordinator, and almost all of his experience has been in the NFL. I haven't heard Roman's name come up at all for the OU job, and it probably isn't going to happen. Still, I thought it was an interesting name worth throwing out there.
For the second consecutive season, Oklahoma picked up a big commitment at the U.S. Army All-American All-American Bowl. This year, it was defensive tackle Neville Gallimore, the four-star defensive tackle from Canada, who committed to the Sooners during the game. Gallimore chose the Sooners over Florida State and Ohio State. Gallimore (6-foot-3, 303 pounds) played high […]
Sooners get commit from four-star defensive tackle Neville Gallimore
Ryan Aber | Jan 3, 2015For the second consecutive season, Oklahoma picked up a big commitment at the U.S. Army All-American All-American Bowl. This year, it was defensive tackle Neville Gallimore, the four-star defensive tackle from Canada, who committed to the Sooners during the game. Gallimore chose the Sooners over Florida State and Ohio State. Gallimore (6-foot-3, 303 pounds) played high school football for Canada Prep Football Academy in St. Catharines, Ontario, near Buffalo, N.Y. The school plays a schedule of top high schools from the United States. Rivals ranks Gallimore as the No. 72 overall prospect in the 2015 class and the No. 9 defensive tackle. He’s Oklahoma’s highest-rated commit. Gallimore will be the second Canadian on Oklahoma’s roster, joining offensive lineman Josiah St. John, who is from Toronto. He is the second defensive tackle in the 2015 class to commit to the Sooners, joining Jenks’ Marquise Overton and the 18th overall commitment in the class. A year ago, five-star running back Joe Mixon committed to the Sooners during the broadcast of the game. Gallimore did not play in the game due to injury. Oklahoma loses starting defensive tackle Jordan Phillips, who announced earlier this week that he would enter the NFL Draft.
Dec 30, 2014
LOS ANGELES (AP) — A few weeks back, the four head coaches who have guided their teams to the College Football Playoff posed for pictures with the championship trophy.Alabama's Nick Saban. Ohio State's Urban Meyer. Florida State's Jimbo Fisher."And some other guy," Oregon coach Mark Helfrich said about himself.The 40-year-old Oregon native, in his second season leading the Ducks, doesn't take...
Ducks' Helfrich is 'other guy' among star coaches
By RALPH D. RUSSO, Associated Press | Dec 30, 2014LOS ANGELES (AP) — A few weeks back, the four head coaches who have guided their teams to the College Football Playoff posed for pictures with the championship trophy. Alabama's Nick Saban. Ohio State's Urban Meyer. Florida State's Jimbo Fisher. "And some other guy," Oregon coach Mark Helfrich said about himself. The 40-year-old Oregon native, in his second season leading the Ducks, doesn't take himself too seriously. And he's fine being the other guy in an all-star lineup of championship coaches. Helfrich's second-seeded Ducks (12-1) face Fisher's third-seeded Seminoles (13-0) on Thursday in the playoff semifinal at the Rose Bowl. Saban (four), Meyer (two) and Fisher (one) have combined to win seven national titles. They are all among the 14 highest-paid coaches in college football this season, according to USA Today's database, with a combined salary of more than $15.3 million. Helfrich, who made $2 million this season to rank 51st among FBS coaches, right behind Colorado's Mike MacIntyre and just ahead of Illinois' Tim Beckman, knows he has a long way to go to match the resumes of his playoff counterparts. "But I think certainly from a confidence standpoint, from a preparation standpoint, from a who we are standpoint, I have a ton of confidence in every guy in this room and every guy in our program," he said this week. Yes, Helfrich turned the question about himself into an answer about the program. In a sense, it's appropriate. Saban is synonymous with Alabama. Meyer is Ohio State's biggest star. At Oregon, Helfrich is just the next guy in line, the coach who took over after Chip Kelly left for the NFL. At this point Helfrich's greatest accomplishment as head coach seems to be keeping a good thing going. Former Oregon defensive coordinator Nick Aliotti said Helfrich is more than just a caretaker. "He was sitting there with three Hall of Fame guys," Aliotti said. "Someday he might be in that same group." Helfrich grew up in Coos Bay on the Oregon coast, a city of about 16,000. His mother and father went to the University of Oregon and he could have walked on to the football team. Instead, he went to Southern Oregon, an NAIA school, and became one of the most prolific quarterbacks in school history. He started his coaching career as a graduate assistant at Oregon, then bounced to Boise State, Arizona State and Colorado, working his way up to offensive coordinator. Former Colorado quarterback Darian Hagan, who was the running backs coach for the Buffaloes when Helfrich was offensive coordinator under Dan Hawkins, said Helfrich's humility and self-deprecating sense of humor hides a fierce competitor, brimming with confidence — whether he was calling football plays or playing pickup basketball. "You pass him the ball, very seldom are you going to get it back," said Hagan, who is now director of player development at Colorado. Hagan said Helfrich's greatest strength as a leader is making everyone feel like a vital member of the program. "He's a guy when he walks into a space, he's not afraid to say hi to the janitor," Hagan said. Helfrich joined Kelly's staff in 2009 as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. Being Kelly's offensive coordinator is like being Paul Prudhomme's sous chef — you're not getting much credit for the final product. But it was Helfrich who discovered Marcus Mariota when he was a second-string high school quarterback in Honolulu. "Without coach Helfrich my growth as a football player wouldn't be where it is right now," Mariota said. "When I first got in coach Helfrich was huge with little things. Understanding what we do as an offense and why we do it." When Kelly jumped to the NFL and became Philadelphia Eagles coach, Helfrich was promoted, continuing an Oregon tradition. Oregon has not hired a head coach from outside the staff since Rich Brooks came from UCLA in 1977. Brooks handed off to Mike Bellotti and Bellotti to Kelly as Oregon grew into a national powerhouse. Under Kelly, the Ducks went to four straight BCS games, played for the national championship after the 2010 season and became synonymous with cutting-edge football from their uniforms to their up-tempo offense. What Helfrich has added is a personal touch. "One was more business focused. More operational focused," senior offensive tackle Jake Fisher said of Kelly. "Helfrich kind of turned it more into a high school team. We bonded more." On Tuesday during the last interview session Oregon players will have before playing in the biggest game of Helfrich's short career as head coach, Fisher was asked if his coach was the most under-appreciated in the playoff. "The most underpaid, yes," he said. With two more wins, that could change, too.
Jan. 11863 — The first homestead claim was filed at Brownville.1891 — Modern Woodmen of America, a fraternal and insurance organization, incorporated in Omaha.1926 — More than 4,000 people attended a reception at the state Capitol for the first official display of the state flagJan. 21939 — Gov. Kay Orr was born in Burlington, Iowa.1984 — The Miami Hurricanes defeated the top-ranked Nebraska...
Today in Nebraska-January
By The Associated Press, Associated Press | Dec 29, 2014Jan. 1 1863 — The first homestead claim was filed at Brownville. 1891 — Modern Woodmen of America, a fraternal and insurance organization, incorporated in Omaha. 1926 — More than 4,000 people attended a reception at the state Capitol for the first official display of the state flag Jan. 2 1939 — Gov. Kay Orr was born in Burlington, Iowa. 1984 — The Miami Hurricanes defeated the top-ranked Nebraska Cornhuskers 31-30 in the Orange Bowl to win the national collegiate football championship. Jan. 3 1949 — A huge blizzard that Gov. Val Peterson called one of the greatest catastrophes ever to hit Nebraska raged across the state. Twenty-five deaths were attributed to the storm. Jan. 4 1854 — A committee headed by Stephen Douglas reported to the U.S. Senate a bill creating the Kansas-Nebraska Act, which organized the Kansas and Nebraska territories. Jan. 5 1937 — The first session of the unicameral Legislature began in Lincoln. Jan. 6 1910 — Novelist Wright Morris was born in Central City. Jan. 7 1870 — The first 10 miles of the Fremont, Elkhorn and Missouri Valley Railroad were completed. 1944 — Three seamen were killed in an explosion at the Naval Ordnance Depot in Hastings. Two more fatal explosions occurred later in the year. Jan. 8 1862 — Saunders County, formerly known as Calhoun County, was organized by an act of the Territorial Legislature. 1881 — Poet John G. Neihardt was born near Sharpsburg, Ill. 1910 — Chadron was chosen the site for the state's fourth normal school, now known as Chadron State College. Jan. 9 1866 — Territorial Gov. Alvin Saunders urged the Legislature to consider statehood. 1879 — A group of Cheyenne Indians broke out of Fort Robinson, leading Army troops on a chase that lasted several days in bitterly cold weather. 1953 — The state Supreme Court ruled that real estate should be assessed at actual value, touching off a controversy that lasted many months. Jan. 10 1917 — Buffalo Bill Cody died in Denver. 1975 — A blizzard driven by 60 mph winds struck Omaha, dumping up to 16 inches of snow. 1976 — An explosion and fire destroyed the Hotel Pathfinder in Fremont, killing 18 people. Jan. 11 1860 — Territorial Legislature authorized a special election to consider forming a state constitution. Jan. 12 1858 — William Richardson became governor of the Nebraska Territory. 1872 — Grand Duke Alexis of Russia arrived in North Platte for a bison hunt with Bill Cody. 1888 — The Schoolchildren's Blizzard. Jan. 13 1873 — Gov. Robert Furnas issued a proclamation organizing Sherman County. 1987 — Mayor Mike Boyle, of Omaha, accused of misconduct in office, was recalled in a special election. Jan. 14 1940 — Among manufacturing cities with 25,000 or more inhabitants, Omaha is the country's first city in the manufacture of butter. Jan. 15 1919 — The people of Sidney threw a welcome-home victory dance for servicemen returning from World War I. Several foxtrots were on the program. Jan. 16 1855 — The first session of the Nebraska Territorial Legislature opened. Jan. 17 1965 — An early Omaha landmark, the Omaha Paper Co. building, was destroyed by fire. Jan. 18 1856 — The Territorial Legislature chartered the Bank of Florence, which failed three years later. 2008 — An 18-year-old North Platte man pleaded guilty to charges related to a double homicide. Michael Grandon admitted killing Lori Solie and 5-year-old Tiara Solie, the mother and half sister, respectively, of Grandon's teenage girlfriend, Alisha Ochoa. 2012 — President Barack Obama rejected plans for a massive oil pipeline that would carry tar sands oil from Canada through Nebraska and other states on its way to the Gulf Coast. The decision didn't kill the project, however. Jan. 19 1874 — Settlers and a band of Sioux Indians were involved in a skirmish near Elyria that became known as the Battle of Pebble Creek. The Indians withdrew after an exchange of shots with the settlers that left one settler dead. Jan. 20 1965 — The Omaha Benson High School Band, in Washington, D.C., for the inaugural parade, experienced a brief period of panic when members learned that their instruments had not arrived in the Capitol with them. Musicians and instruments were soon reunited when the mix-up was straightened out. Jan. 21 1879 — Cheyenne outbreak at Fort Robinson ends with the Battle of Antelope Creek. 1930 — Longtime Omaha Mayor Jim Dahlman died. Jan. 22 1879 — Nine Northern Cheyenne Indians were captured and about two dozen killed at the end of the Battle of Antelope Creek about 40 miles northwest of Fort Robinson. 1893 — The Capitol National Bank failed in Lincoln during a financial panic. Jan. 24 1949 — The village of Terrytown was incorporated. Jan. 25 1940 — Shattering all records for a movie here, "Gone With the Wind" opened at the Paramount in Omaha, with an advance sale of 17,000 tickets. Jan. 26 1856 — Dixon County was organized. 1916 — Keya Paha High School opened in Springview. Jan. 27 1949 — Thirteen inches of snow fell in Omaha during a blizzard. 1958 — Police found the bodies of three people at a Lincoln home, the first victims discovered in a murder spree by Charles Starkweather. Jan. 28 1940 — John Steinbeck's novel "The Grapes of Wrath" was not available to patrons of the Omaha Public Library. The Library Board had not taken formal action after a discussion to ban the book, but the librarian said the book had been catalogued and then withdrawn from circulation. Jan. 29 1958 — Mass murderer Charles Starkweather, of Lincoln, was arrested in Douglas, Wyo. Jan. 30 1965 — Noting that it is difficult to determine where to draw the line in laws regulating exotic dancing, the Omaha city attorney told a council member that he didn't think it rational to write an ordinance permitting only one wiggle per drum beat. Jan. 31 1876 — The Sioux Nation was turned over to the War Department. The U.S. government issued a decree the month before requiring that all Sioux Indians in Nebraska, Wyoming and Montana turn themselves in at reservations or be considered hostile.
Dec 27, 2014
Ty Darlington didn’t get a chance to play for a high school championship at Apopka High School with his father Rick as his coach. But Monday, Oklahoma will face No. 17 Clemson in the Russell Athletic Bowl in the same stadium where high school championships are won in the state of Florida.
Oklahoma football: Ty Darlington finally gets his chance to play in the Citrus Bowl Stadium
BY JASON KERSEY | Dec 27, 2014ORLANDO, Fla. — Ty Darlington will finally suit up and play football inside Citrus Bowl Stadium. “It eluded me,” Darlington said. “I wanted to play in that thing my entire life.” But this isn’t quite what Darlington had in mind while playing at nearby Apopka High School. Darlington and Oklahoma will face No. 17 Clemson in the Russell Athletic Bowl on Monday afternoon in the same stadium where high school championships are won in the state of Florida. Although the Sooners have fallen well short of their preseason expectations, it’s been a banner year for Darlington personally. The junior is serving as vice chair of the Big 12 Conference Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. He’s started every game at center for the Sooners, fulfilling a lifelong dream. He graduated with his bachelor’s degree this month — needing only two-and-a-half years to finish — and will begin pursuing a master’s degree this spring in intercollegiate athletic administration, a curriculum he might one day use to become a coach like his highly respected father. “He’s very much a leader,” said Rick Darlington, Ty’s dad. “Being a coach’s son, you kinda have to lead because you understand how coaches think. He doesn’t really see things like a normal 21-year-old dude because he’s thinking more like an adult. “When I hear him being interviewed, he doesn’t sound like a player. He sounds like a coach, which is what he’ll probably end up being.” ‘He’s done everything’ If anyone knows what a coach sounds like, it would be Rick Darlington. The 49-year-old has been a high school head coach for 19 years, spending 1999-2002 at Apopka, then three seasons at Valdosta High in Georgia before returning in 2006 to Apopka, where he’s stayed ever since. He’s won three state championships — all at Apopka — and is regarded nationally as a top offensive innovator. Rick Darlington and Apopka High School are featured prominently in Chaper 1 of the 2010 book, “Blood, Sweat and Chalk, The Ultimate Football Playbook: How The Great Coaches Built Today’s Game.” In the book, author Tim Layden wrote about Darlington’s innovative use of the old-school single wing, known by many today as the “Wildcat.” In the spring of 2007, Darlington realized his team didn’t have a true passing quarterback on his team, so he didn’t use one. He showed his players old film of teams running the single wing from decades past, and on most offensive snaps, the center snapped the ball to a tailback. With a wide variety of fakes and intricate blocking schemes, Apopka became an offensive juggernaut running the single wing, and did it even before Miami Dolphins running back Ronnie Brown stunned the NFL world with his execution of the “wildcat.” Ty Darlington calls his father “brilliant,” and said what makes him so successful is that he never gets too hooked on any particular offensive philosophy. “He’s always adapted what he does offensively to fit his personnel,” Ty Darlington said. “He’s very well-respected in Florida and throughout the nation for what he’s done. “He’s run the Georgia Tech flexbone. He’s run Oregon spread concepts. He’s run put everyone in the box, single-wing. He’s done everything.” Rick Darlington gives credit to longtime Lakeland High coach Bill Castle, who coached Rick in high school and gave him his first job years ago. Castle is a heck of a mentor to have. After all, in 2007, Castle was named the Florida high school Coach of the Century by the Florida High School Athletic Association. Rick Darlington said Apopka’s freshman and junior varsity teams run the single wing exclusively, but on the varsity level, he tinkers with things constantly. “Sometimes I just wanna be one thing, but my mind won’t shut off,” Rick Darlington said. “It’s not like I can shut it off and say, ‘OK, we’re gonna run these seven plays and I’m not gonna think about it. I’m gonna think about yard work or learning how to cook.’ “No, I think about football.” How much does Rick Darlington think about new ideas? He visited Oklahoma’s bowl practices two days this week, drove Saturday to Tampa to watch Auburn practice for the Outback Bowl, and plans to watch Minnesota practice Sunday for the Buffalo Wild Wings Citrus Bowl. “I just love going to bowl practices,” he said. Dreams fulfilled Ty Darlington grew up dreaming of playing in Citrus Bowl Stadium, but also always dreamed of being a Sooner. His mother, Shelly, was on the OU pom squad in the 1980s, and her dad, Jack Fried, co-wrote the 1976 book, “The Winning Edge,” about Sooner football. Interestingly, Shelly Darlington’s final game on the OU pom squad was at the 1989 Citrus Bowl, when the Sooners faced Clemson. That was also legendary coach Barry Switzer’s final game. The oldest of seven children, Ty Darlington was a standout and leader on his dad’s Apopka teams until his senior season in 2011. He became a four-star recruit and signed with Oklahoma, fulfilling one of his childhood gridiron dreams. The other, though, never came as a high schooler. “That’s kind of a heartbreaker for me,” Rick Darlington said. “He was such a great player for us, but also a great leader for us. A building block for our program. He grew up around the program, around me. “There’s nothing better than winning a state championship with your son.” That’s exactly what happened in 2012, when Ty’s brother Zack Darlington — now a Nebraska freshman — quarterbacked the Blue Darters to a title. Apopka won another state championship inside the Citrus Bowl earlier this month. Although it’s not under the circumstances he dreamed about, Ty Darlington will finally get to step on the Citrus Bowl field and play Monday, and his family and friends will be well-represented. Each OU player received six complimentary tickets, but Darlington has managed to get enough teammates to transfer theirs to him that he’ll be able to accomodate the 70-plus people who asked for a ticket. And in a few weeks, Ty will begin working on his master’s degree. He said he’d like to either become a college football coach or work in college athletic administration. “If Ty takes all of his intelligence and love and puts it into football, I think he’ll be a pretty dang good coach,” Rick said.
FRIDAY HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL 7 p.m., Davis vs. Nowata, FSPLUS (Cox 68) 7 p.m., Thomas vs. Cashion, KRXO-FM 107.7 BOYS HIGH SCHOOL BASKETBALL 5:30 p.m., Bishop O’Dowd at Montverde, ESPN2 (Cox 28) NBA 6 p.m., Portland at Chicago, ESPN (Cox 29) 7 p.m., OKC at Minnesota, FSOK (Cox 37)/WWLS-AM 640/98.1 FM 8:30 p.m., L.A. Lakers at San Antonio, ESPN (Cox 29) COLLEGE FOOTBALL 7 p.m., Chattanooga vs. N....
Sports TV listings for Friday, Dec. 12-Sunday, Dec. 14
Dec 11, 2014FRIDAY HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL 7 p.m., Davis vs. Nowata, FSPLUS (Cox 68) 7 p.m., Thomas vs. Cashion, KRXO-FM 107.7 BOYS HIGH SCHOOL BASKETBALL 5:30 p.m., Bishop O’Dowd at Montverde, ESPN2 (Cox 28) NBA 6 p.m., Portland at Chicago, ESPN (Cox 29) 7 p.m., OKC at Minnesota, FSOK (Cox 37)/WWLS-AM 640/98.1 FM 8:30 p.m., L.A. Lakers at San Antonio, ESPN (Cox 29) COLLEGE FOOTBALL 7 p.m., Chattanooga vs. N. Hampshire, ESPN2 (Cox 28) MEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL 6 p.m., Texas Southern at Florida, SECN (Cox 275) WOMEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL 8 p.m., M. Tenn. St. at Kentucky, SECN (Cox 275) AHL 7 p.m., Grand Rapids at OKC, KXXY-FM 96.1 GOLF 6:30 a.m., Alfred Dunhill, GOLF (Cox 60) Noon, Franklin Templeton, GOLF (Cox 60) 7 p.m., Australian PGA, GOLF (Cox 60) 12 a.m., Sat. Thailand Golf, GOLF (Cox 60) RODEO 9 p.m., NFR, CBSS (Cox 249) MEN’S SOCCER 4 p.m., UMBC vs. Virginia, ESPNU (Cox 253) 6:30 p.m., Providence vs. UCLA, ESPNU (Cox 253) HOCKEY 6:30 p.m., Sarnia at. Kitchener, NHLNET (Cox 263) VOLLEYBALL 8:30 p.m., Nebraska at Washington, ESPNU (Cox 253) SATURDAY NBA 9 p.m., Detroit at Sacramento, NBATV (Cox 256) NHL 6 p.m., Detroit at Toronto, NHLNET (Cox 263) 7:30 p.m., New Jersey at Dallas, FSOK (Cox 37) 9 p.m., St. Louis at Colorado, NHLNET (Cox 263) COLLEGE FOOTBALL 11 a.m., C. Carolina vs. N. Dak. St., ESPN (Cox 29) 2 p.m., Army vs. Navy, KWTV-9 (Cox 10) 7 p.m., Heisman Presentation, ESPN (Cox 29) MEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL 11 a.m., Wichita State at Detroit, ESPNU (Cox 253) 11 a.m., N. Carolina at Kentucky, KWTV-9 (Cox 10) 11 a.m., Stony Brook at Providence, FSOK (Cox 37) 11 a.m., Radford at Georgetown, FS1 (Cox 67) 1 p.m., Dayton at Arkansas, ESPN2 (Cox 28) 1 p.m., St. Bonaventure at Pitt., ESPNU (Cox 253) 1 p.m., St. Mary’s, at Creighton, FS1 (Cox 67) 1:30 p.m., Oklahoma at Tulsa, CBSS (Cox 249)/KRXO-FM 107.7/KRMG-AM 740 2:15 p.m., Utah vs. Kansas, ESPN (Cox 29) 3 p.m., Xavier at Missouri, ESPN2 (Cox 28) 3:30 p.m., W. Kentucky at Mississippi, SECN (Cox 275) 4:15 p.m., Michigan at Arizona, ESPN (Cox 29) 5 p.m., Oklahoma St. at Memphis, ESPN2 (Cox 28)/KXXY-FM 96.1 6 p.m., Sam Houston St. at LSU, SECN (Cox 275) 6 p.m., Northern Iowa at VCU, NBCSN (Cox 251) 7 p.m., Texas State at Texas, LHN (Cox 274) 7 p.m., Florida St. at Notre Dame, ESPN2 (Cox 28) 8 p.m., Purdue at Vanderbilt, SECN (Cox 275) 9 p.m., Gonzaga at UCLA, ESPN2 (Cox 28) RODEO 9 p.m., NFR, CBSS (Cox 249) MEN’S SOCCER 9 a.m., English Premier, NBCSN (Cox 251) 11:30 a.m., Arsenal FC vs. Newcastle U., NBCSN (Cox 251) VOLLEYBALL 3 p.m., NCAA Regional, ESPNU (Cox 253) 5:30 p.m., NCAA Regional, ESPNU (Cox 253) 8 p.m., NCAA Regional, ESPNU (Cox 253) 10:30 p.m., NCAA Regional, ESPNU (Cox 253) AHL 7 p.m., Grand Rapids at OKC, KGHM-AM 1340 GOLF 4:30 a.m., Alfred Dunhill, GOLF (Cox 60) Noon, Franklin Templeton, KOKH-25 (Cox 12) 1 p.m., Father/Son Challenge, GOLF (Cox 60) 2 p.m., Father/Son Challenge, KFOR-4 (Cox 4) 7 p.m., Australian PGA, GOLF (Cox 60) DEW TOUR Noon, Breckenridge, KFOR-4 (Cox 4) FOOTBALL 11 a.m., Pop Warner, ESPN2 (Cox 28) SUNDAY NFL Noon, Oakland at Kansas City, KGHM-AM 1340 Noon, Miami at New England, KWTV-9 (Cox 10) Noon, Green Bay at Buffalo, KRXO-FM 107.7 Noon, Cincinnati at Cleveland, KOKH-25 (Cox 12) 3:25 p.m., San Francisco at Seattle, KOKH-25 (Cox 12) 7:20 p.m., Dallas at Philadelphia, KFOR-4 (Cox 4)/KGHM-AM 1340 NBA 6 p.m., Phoenix at OKC, FSOK (Cox 37)/WWLS-AM 640/98.1 FM MEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL 11 a.m., St. Peter’s at Seton Hall, FS1 (Cox 67) 1 p.m., Butler at Tennessee, ESPNU (Cox 253) 1 p.m., Prairie V.A.M at Texas T., FSOK (Cox 37) 1 p.m., Temple at Villanova, FS1 (Cox 67) 3 p.m., Jacksonville at Florida, FSOK (Cox 37) 3 p.m., La. Tech at Syracuse, ESPNU (Cox 253) 3 p.m., Illinois St. at DePaul, FS1 (Cox 67) 5 p.m., Savannah St. at Kansas St., FSPLUS (Cox 68) 5 p.m., UNC Wilmington at Louisville, ESPNU (Cox 253) 7 p.m., Oakland at Michigan St., ESPNU (Cox 253) WOMEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL Noon, Mercer at Alabama, SECN (Cox 275) 2 p.m., NW State at Texas, LHN (Cox 274) 2 p.m., Tennessee at Rutgers, ESPN2 (Cox 28) 2 p.m., Stephen F.A at Baylor, FSPLUS (Cox 68) 4 p.m., Oklahoma at Ark.-L.R., KREF-AM 1400/98.5 FM/KOKC-AM 1520/103.1 FM 5 p.m., Belmont at Kentucky, SECN (Cox 275) GOLF 4:30 a.m., Alfred Dunhill, GOLF (Cox 60) 1 p.m., Father/Son Challenge, GOLF (Cox 60) 2 p.m., Father/Son Challenge, KFOR-4 (Cox 4) COLLEGE FOOTBALL 7:30 p.m., Bowl Mania, ESPN (Cox 29) MEN’S SOCCER 11 a.m., NCAA Final, ESPNU (Cox 253) DEW TOUR Noon, Breckenridge, KFOR-4 (Cox 4)
NEW YORK (AP) — Shane Conlan played high school football in western New York on teams with some linemen who weighed 140 pounds.He was discovered by longtime Penn State defensive coordinator Tom Bradley, who decided to offer the 170-pound kid from Frewsburg a scholarship after watching him play basketball.Conlan proved he belonged at his first college practice, and Bradley's faith in him was...
Conlan, Thomas inducted into College Hall of Fame
By RALPH D. RUSSO, Associated Press | Dec 9, 2014NEW YORK (AP) — Shane Conlan played high school football in western New York on teams with some linemen who weighed 140 pounds. He was discovered by longtime Penn State defensive coordinator Tom Bradley, who decided to offer the 170-pound kid from Frewsburg a scholarship after watching him play basketball. Conlan proved he belonged at his first college practice, and Bradley's faith in him was rewarded. "I was doing one-on-one drills against the starting tight end and I did really well," Conlan said. The former All-America linebacker who helped the Nittany Lions win their last national title is part of a class of 14 former players and two coaches inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame on Tuesday. The group of honorees at the National Football Foundation awards banquet included: North Carolina cornerback Dre Bly; Southern California offensive tackle Tony Boselli; Purdue defensive tackle Dave Butz; Georgia Tech quarterback Joe Hamilton; Maine linebacker John Huard; Stanford halfback Darrin Nelson; Louisiana Tech offensive tackle Willie Roaf; South Carolina wide receiver Sterling Sharpe; McNeese State cornerback Leonard Smith; TCU running back LaDainian Tomlinson; Mississippi tight end Wesley Walls; and the late Derrick Thomas, who dominated at linebacker for Alabama. "I know that big smile is smiling down on us today," said Thomas' mother, Edith Morgan, who represented him a morning news conference at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in midtown Manhattan. Thomas had 27 sacks and won the Butkus Award as the nation's top linebacker in 1988 before going on to a successful NFL career with the Kansas City Chiefs. He was paralyzed in an automobile wreck in 2000 and died from complications about a month later. He was 33. Conlan was also one of the most dominant linebackers of the 1980s. He had two interceptions in his final college game as Penn State upset Miami 14-10 in the Fiesta Bowl to win the national title. "I guess (Miami quarterback) Vinny (Testaverde) threw it to the wrong guy," said Conlan, who played nine NFL seasons, most of them with the Buffalo Bills. Conlan thanked Bradley, who is now a defensive assistant at West Virginia after spending 35 years at Penn State as a player and coach under Joe Paterno. Bradley said he had to convince Paterno to give Conlan one of the last scholarships Penn State had available that year. "Tom found me," Conlan said. "I owe him everything." The coaches being inducted were Jerry Moore, who won I-AA national titles at Appalachian State and led the Mountaineers to an upset against Michigan in 2007, and Mike Bellotti, the winningest coach in Oregon history.
LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — After striking out on a rising star and a well-known coach with an NFL pedigree, Kansas turned to one of its own to resurrect a program that has languished near the bottom of the Big 12.The school announced Friday that it had hired Texas A&M assistant David Beaty to be its third coach in five years. Beaty spent time at Kansas on the successful staff of Mark Mangino and...
Kansas hires Texas A&M's Beaty as football coach
By DAVE SKRETTA, Associated Press | Dec 5, 2014LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — After striking out on a rising star and a well-known coach with an NFL pedigree, Kansas turned to one of its own to resurrect a program that has languished near the bottom of the Big 12. The school announced Friday that it had hired Texas A&M assistant David Beaty to be its third coach in five years. Beaty spent time at Kansas on the successful staff of Mark Mangino and failed staff of Turner Gill, giving him unique insight into the program's peaks and valleys. "My family and I are honored and humbled to be back here," said Beaty, who was introduced to the crowd during halftime of the Jayhawks' basketball game against Florida on Friday night. "I won't sleep until I give you something to be proud of at Memorial Stadium," he said. Beaty emerged from a cluster of candidates that all had ties to the program, including Clint Bowen, the longtime defensive coordinator who served as interim coach when Charlie Weis fired. Beaty said that Bowen, a Lawrence native and Kansas alum, has agreed to remain on staff. "I am very excited to be back at Kansas," Beaty said. "I am especially excited that Clint Bowen has agreed to stay on as assistant head coach and defensive coordinator. Clint will be a huge part of our success going forward and I am fortunate to have him on my staff." Beaty, who had been interviewed over the phone, arrived on campus for a more formal interview and tour of the facilities Friday. The school planned a news conference for Monday. "David Beaty is well-respected in the football community and brings to KU great vision, passion and energy," Kansas athletic director Sheahon Zenger said in a statement. "He has a bright football mind and is known as one of the best recruiters in the nation." Beaty will certainly have plenty of work to do. The Jayhawks won just three games this season and one Big 12 game, and have been firmly in the league cellar since Mangino was fired in 2009 amid accusations that he mistreated players. Kansas has not had a winning season since 2008. A longtime high school coach in Texas, Beaty primarily worked with wide receivers for Mangino, and returned to Rice after that staff was let go. Beaty came back to Kansas as part of Gill's staff in 2011, and then bolted to Texas A&M when Gill — considered a rising star for his work at Buffalo when he was hired by the Jayhawks — was let go after a 2-10 season. Weis won just six games over two-plus seasons before he was fired four games into this year, and Bowen coached the Jayhawks to a win over Iowa State as interim coach. Meanwhile, Beaty helped to coach record-setting offenses at Texas A&M while burnishing his reputation as one of the nation's best recruiters. The Aggies have had produced some of the best classes in the nation while he has been on the staff in College Station. "Coach Beaty is one of the most genuine people I've ever known," said former Aggies wide receiver Mike Evans, now with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. "On the field, he's a great coach with a lot of energy and he's fun to be around. He will always push you to be your best." Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin praised Beaty as "a great recruiter, a great coach and a great man" in a statement that accompanied his hiring Friday. "He was one of the first people I hired at Texas A&M and he's been a huge part of what we've been able to accomplish here," Sumlin said. "He's earned this opportunity to be a head coach, and I believe he will do a tremendous job with the Jayhawks." Despite a few good stretches under Glen Mason in the 1990s and Mangino in the 2000s, Kansas football has generally been overshadowed by its powerhouse basketball program. Fan support has been lukewarm most years, and only about 15,000 fans watched the Jayhawks' home finale this season. Kansas also has some of the worst facilities in the Big 12, even after the construction of the Anderson Family Football Complex. Memorial Stadium is aging and there is no proper indoor practice facility on campus, making it difficult to work outside in bad weather. Zenger has said that he would like to renovate to the football stadium, but it has been difficult to raise money for a losing program. That means hiring a coach who can not only produce results on the field but also energize the fan base is of paramount importance. "Coach Beaty is a players' coach, but he knows when to be serious," former Kansas wide receiver Dezmon Briscoe said. "He is not afraid to put his foot down and tell you what you are doing wrong. He won't let you sit around and be mediocre. He wants greatness from you." Now, the Jayhawks expect the same from him.
Nov 30, 2014
One more reason why I’d like to see the Pirates do the honorable thing. I care about the kids of Mayes County. And while winning a state championship would be great for Locust Grove, even greater would be teaching a bunch of teen-agers that doing the right thing is never a wrong way to go.
Douglass-Locust Grove: Why Locust Grove should agree to replay the game's last 60 seconds
By Berry Tramel | Nov 30, 2014Opportunities come along often. For all of us. Great opportunities come along rarely. A great opportunity has presented itself for the Locust Grove football team. By now you’ve probably heard of the big flap in the Class 3A state quarterfinals Friday night at Douglass High School. Locust Grove beat the Trojans 20-19, after a late Douglass touchdown was erased by an improperly-enforced penalty by officials who didn’t know the rules. Douglass, the Oklahoma City Public Schools and at least one politician, probably more, are demanding justice and a replay of that final minute. Only thing left are the lawyers. But the last thing high school football needs is more court cases. Or more debate under the Capitol dome. More outrage from the wronged. The first thing high school football needs is more humanity. Humanity and humility. The first thing high school football needs is to jump off the just-win-baby treadmill and rediscover its roots. That final minute ought to be replayed, not because of the outcry of the wronged, but because of the benevolence of the righted. Locust Grove ought to take the lead and agree to replay those 60 seconds. Ought to stand up and demand that it be given the chance to win the game unblemished. [tweetquote]This is about what’s right. This is about freeing the Locust Grove players from a lifetime of what-ifs.[/tweetquote] That’s counter to the message the sport declares these days, when the pursuit of gold balls is paramount and parents shop their kids from school to school, chasing team glory and individual acclaim. Coaches always talk about the life lessons that football provides. Seldom are they interested in actually teaching those life lessons. The season arrives, the playoffs start and the Friday Night Lights become a boneyard. As in, somebody’s season is cemetery-bound. Locust Grove coach Matt Hennesy told our man Scott Wright that plenty of other calls affected the game. A hold here. A called-back touchdown there. No argument, though I’m reminded of the old Eddie Sutton truth, that mistakes in the final seconds are magnified because they can’t be overcome. This isn’t about who’s right. This is about what’s right. This is about freeing the Locust Grove players from a lifetime of what-ifs. Freeing them from the gnawing feeling of ill-gotten gain. Giving them the precious gift that there are more important things than finishing first and having the most toys. What an opportunity to show, instead of tell. What an opportunity to instill those life lessons. Better men than me and Matt Hennesy have had this opportunity and declined. Colorado won the 1990 national championship only after beating Missouri with a fifth down. CU coach Bill McCartney, who championed the Promise Keepers movement, dismissed suggestions that the Buffaloes give back that game. Always made me wonder what promises he was keeping. This is not an East-West issue for me. This is not big city vs. small town. I’ve got a lot more ties to Locust Grove, 167 miles from my house, than I do to Douglass High School, 18 miles from home. I ate lunch once with Douglass coach Willis Alexander at a football camp, and I went with Wes Welker to Douglass when his foundation presented a grant to the Trojan football program. Covered one game at Moses F. Miller Stadium, back in 1999. My Locust ties are much deeper. My dad’s from Mayes County. The older half of the Tramel clan, which included my dad, went to school in Salina, but the younger half (there were 11 kids) went to Locust Grove. My cousin’s son played on Locust’s Class 3A semifinal team that played Millwood in Moore. My dad and I were there, cheering on the Pirates. My cousin Jimmie, of Tulsa World sportswriting fame, is a proud Locust grad. I’m sure I’ve got distant cousins walking the halls of Locust Grove High School. Probably playing on the football squad. Which is one more reason why I’d like to see the Pirates do the honorable thing. I care about the kids of Mayes County. And while winning a state championship would be great for Locust Grove, even greater would be teaching a bunch of teen-agers that doing the right thing is never a wrong way to go. Berry Tramel: Berry can be reached at (405) 760-8080 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. He can be heard Monday through Friday from 4:40-5:20 p.m. on The Sports Animal radio network, including FM-98.1. You can also view his personality page at newsok.com/berrytramel.