The Miami Dolphins landed coveted wide receiver Mike Wallace and linebacker Dannell Ellerbe on Tuesday, first day of the NFL free agency signing period.“The ink is dry and it’s official,” the Dolphins tweeted on their official Twitter feed. “Please welcome @Wallace17_daKid to the Miami Dolphins!”Wallace signed a five-year, $60 million deal with Dolphins and includes $30 million in guarantees, according ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter. He will roughly average about $12 million per year, making him the third highest paid receiver behind Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson and Arizona Cardinals Larry Fitzgerald.Wallace was selected in third round of the 2009 draft out of Mississippi with the 84th overall pick by the Pittsburgh Steelers. In four years with the Steelers he had 235 receptions for 4,042 yards and hauled in 32 touchdowns. Wallace’s best year for the Steelers was in 2011 when he had 1,193 receiving yards and eight touchdowns, which earned him his first Pro Bowl selection.“He has a unique skill set which we believe will be a welcome addition to our offense,” Dolphins general manager Jeff Ireland said in a statement.The 25-year-old Wallace will now be a blazing deep threat that can spread the defense for the Dolphins since their wideouts totaled three touchdowns last season. The Dolphins were ranked 27th last year in offense with rookie quarterback Ryan Tannehill at the helm.Wallace will now join the Miami receiving core of Brian Hartline and Davone Bess. The Dolphins re-signed Hartline on Friday to a five-year deal for nearly $31 million.The Dolphins did not end their free-agent signing with Wallace, but they also managed to lure away Baltimore Ravens free-agent linebacker Dannell Ellerbe, according to The Baltimore Sun. Ellerbe’s deal is worth $35 million over five years, according to the paper.The 27-year-old Ellerbe became the Raven’s best defensive player by the end of the team’s Super Bowl campaign. He was second on the team with 89 tackles and 4.5 sacks.The Dolphins are hopeful that the addition of Wallace and Ellerbe can get them into the playoffs and make them a contender in the AFC East.
John Brooks says he had a premonition. A dream, actually. A dream that became an amazing reality.Two nights before the United States played Ghana in the World Cup, center-back Brooks said he dreamed of scoring in the 88th minute of a tied game to win the game and end America’s losing streak to the West African country that had eliminated the U.S. in the last two World Cups.On Monday evening against the Black Stars, in the United States’ opening match of the 2014 World Cup, the 21-year-old German-American rose into the air in the 86th minute and became the unlikeliest hero in an unlikely victory. He scored on a header off a Graham Zusi corner kick that stood up to beat the Black Stars 2-1.“It’s unbelievable,” Brooks said after it was over. “It’s a great moment for me.”It’s also a moment few could have seen coming a month ago. Brooks, a rookie Bundesliga player with hometown team Hertha Berlin last season, was regarded by most as a long shot to make the U.S. team. The imposing 6-foot-4-inch lefty’s talent and physical tools were obvious, but he was coming off a mixed debut season as an irregular starter and sometimes inconsistent performer in Germany’s vaunted top-flight.He was included on U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann 30-man training camp roster, but few expected him to be standing when Klinsmann whittled it down to the 23 lucky souls who would travel to this summer’s tournament in Brazil. But Klinsmann knew what he had. And when he trimmed his list on May 22, Brooks survived the cut.“We saw very early that his passing is amazing, he’s very calm for his age, and obviously strong in the air because he’s so tall,” the U.S. boss said following Monday’s match. He also noted the youngster’s superior positioning and penchant for avoiding fouls.
FiveThirtyEight Embed Code More: Apple Podcasts | ESPN App | RSS | Embed Welcome to the latest episode of Hot Takedown, FiveThirtyEight’s sports podcast. This week’s show was taped live at the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference in Boston. On this episode (Mar. 8, 2017), we talk to Baltimore Raven John Urschel, who is pursuing his Ph.D. in mathematics at MIT during the offseason. Next, we break down what Kevin Durant’s injury means for the Warriors’s postseason prospects. Finally, we investigate some interesting NHL trades and ponder the merits of building a hockey super team. Plus, we turn our regular significant digit segment into a quiz!Links to what we discussed:John Urschel explained his decision to head back to school for The Players’ Tribune last year.Urschel was recently named to Forbes’ 30 under 30 list.FiveThirtyEight’s Kyle Wagner wrote about why Kevin Durant’s injury showed how much the Warriors needed him.The Kevin Shattenkirk trade was a no-brainer for the Capitals, notes The Washington Post’s Steve Allen.Deadspin’s Barry Petchesky says that the Ben Bishop trade was startlingly smart.
It wasn’t that long ago that shots from 28 feet or farther were rare because hardly anyone could make them. In the 2000-01 season, 23 players attempted at least 15 shots from that far out, and as a group they made only 17.4 percent of those attempts. This season, 90 players have a collective field-goal average of 27.2 percent on shots 28 feet and farther back. Across the league, teams have embraced the deep three.Still, field-goal averages for most players decrease when they get farther away from the 3-point line. Curry’s 3-point percentage drops from 43.4 percent when shooting inside 28 feet to 32.7 percent outside that distance. James Harden, Damian Lillard, Kemba Walker and other high-volume sharpshooters experience similar drop-offs. But though James is shooting above his career average from 3-point range overall, his 3-point percentage from inside 28 feet is 35 percent — 17.3 percentage points lower than outside that range.That peculiarity may have to do with the way defenders guard James that far out. Generally, a player with the ball in his hands 28 feet away from the hoop is a bigger threat to drive than to shoot. That’s certainly true for James, who drives 11.8 times a game and pulls up from three only 3.3 times a game. All year, James has muscled and blown past smaller and slower defenders on drives to the cup. Knowing they can’t match James step-for-step, defenders sag off to give themselves more room for error — to defend against the threat of a drive. That strategy made sense earlier in James’s career, when he was less of a threat from three, but this year he is making defenses pay.It also probably helps that James has for a teammate one of the best shooters of all time. Kyle Korver, who was traded to the Cavaliers last season, has mentioned in interviews that he’s helped James on his shooting mechanics. Earlier this season, Korver said of James, “My man has worked his way into being a real shooter, like, for real. He can really shoot.”Korver, who turned 37 last month, has relied on 3-point shooting to extend his career. With a career high in 3-point attempts this season, James may be showing signs of what his game will look like as his athleticism begins to decline.A few consecutive misses in James’s final game of the regular season could drop his average below .500. But it’s probably safe to say that his season average from deep will still rank as one of the best since 2000. Only two other players — Jamal Crawford in 2013-14 and Chris Paul in 2016-17 — have hit the 50 percent mark for a season in that time frame.James has hinted at wanting to stay in the league long enough to possibly play with his 13-year-old son, LeBron James Jr. His newfound range from three may just help him get there.Check out our latest NBA predictions. It’s well-known what LeBron James can do at the rim. His size, strength and ability to absorb contact make him arguably the best scorer at the game’s shortest shots. But this season, he’s establishing himself as the best at the game’s longest shots, too.The 3-pointer from way deep is the trademark of Steph Curry, and yet it’s James whose precision from several steps behind the arc is on pace to break records. Through Monday, James has made 52.3 percent (23 for 44) of his shots from 28 feet or farther from the hoop,1H/T to Reddit user HMHype for pointing this out. according to Basketball-Reference.com. That’s not only the best this season among players who have taken at least 15 of those shots, but it’s also the best anyone has shot from that deep since the 2000-01 season, the furthest back play-by-play data is available on Basketball-Reference.com.Even Curry’s other-worldly 2015-16 season, in which he routinely rained threes on opposing defenses shortly after crossing half-court, can’t compare to what James is doing this year.
Senior middle blocker Taylor Sandbothe, junior outside hitter Luisa Schirmer and sophomore setter Taylor Hughes gather near the net during a match against LIU Brooklyn. The Buckeyes won 3-0. Credit: Jenna Leinasars | Assistant News DirectorThe Ohio State women’s volleyball team took their first loss of the season to No. 10 Brigham Young University on Saturday. Both teams came into the match undefeated at 5-0, but when the dust cleared, it was the BYU Cougars who left Columbus unscathed after a point-for-point, five-set battle. BYU proved to be the Buckeyes’ toughest match during the Sports Imports D.C. Koehl Classic. The Buckeyes had no trouble sweeping LIU Brooklyn and Wyoming in quick, three-set matches on Friday at Nationwide Arena.Junior outside hitter Luisa Schirmer and sophomore setter Taylor Hughes were named to the D.C. Koehl Classic all-tournament team. Schirmer racked up 30 kills on the weekend, while Hughes contributed a staggering 110 assists. Senior libero Valeria León rose to third place (1,342) as she continues to climb the ladder for most career digs in OSU history. After the loss to the Cougars, the Buckeye “tribe” carries a 5-1 record going into next weekend’s play. LIU BrooklynOSU put away the Blackbirds in three-set fashion (25-11, 25-17, 25-19). The Buckeyes hit for an impressive .462 attacking efficiency and held LIU Brooklyn to just .112 on the match. Freshman outside hitter Brooke Bailey drove down six kills on nine attempts, while teammate junior outside hitter Ashley Wenz was the team leader with a .769 hitting rate.The loss put the Blackbirds at 0-4 on the year. WyomingRevenge was on the table when OSU took on Wyoming, the team who handed the Buckeyes a loss on their first match of the season last year. It was the Buckeyes though, who came out on top on Friday, knocking off the Cowgirls in three sets. OSU had trailed for much of the first set against Wyoming, but the swinging power of senior middle hitter Taylor Sandbothe and company brought the Buckeyes out of the hole, eventually winning the set 25-22. The pattern continued for the second set, with the Cowgirls once again taking an early 0-4 lead. A Buckeye timeout was called, and senior middle blocker Kylie Randall gave the team their first point with a kill. After some point-for-point play, OSU regained the driver’s seat and cruised to a 25-17 second-set victory. OSU led the way almost the entire time in the third set, only tying at an early 1-1. The team ended the third and final set 25-17 on a kill by Schirmer. Sophomore outside hitter Audra Appold posted 12 kills on the match, six of which came in the third set. Sandbothe led both teams in kills and blocks with 14 and six, respectively. Sandbothe admits the team was off their mojo in the beginning, but she is glad they were able to stitch up the loose ends. “We started off a little slow, but I think we trusted in our coaching staff, we trusted in the game plan and bringing it in the middle, refocusing our team and making sure we were going nose to the pavement,” she said.Head coach Geoff Carlston was also satisfied that his team could come through and redeem their loss from last season. “Wyoming’s a really good team. We lost to them last year … I’ve been nervous for this match, and I was really happy with how they played tonight,” he said. BYU The final match of the tournament featured No. 11 OSU taking on No. 10 BYU in a tooth-and-nail battle to stay undefeated.OSU jumped out to an early 3-0 lead in the first set but had to battle a Cougars squad who didn’t back down. The first set was a back-and-forth affair, but ultimately OSU took home the first set. OSU also maintained the lead for the majority of the second set, until a kill from the Cougars’ McKenna Miller tied the score 24-24. However, two quick kills from Sandbothe put the Buckeyes ahead 2-0 heading into the third set. Despite the two strong sets from OSU, BYU’s attack was in full force in set No. 3, as the Buckeyes began to unravel from early mistakes finding themselves down 9-0. The woes continued, and at one occasion, the Buckeyes faced a 21-3 deficit, the largest they had seen all season. Three kills from OSU’s Wenz and errors on BYU’s side of the net helped the Buckeyes collect 11 points before the set’s end. OSU went on to lose the third, 14-25. Fate was not kind to the Buckeyes again in the fourth set. They trailed the Cougars nearly the entire duration of the set. BYU won the set 25-20, forcing a fifth and final set. The Cougars took an early lead in the fifth that wasn’t relinquished in the 15-point, sudden-death set. Despite the Buckeyes’ efforts, they dropped the fifth and final set 15-9, marking their first loss of the season.BYU out-swung the Buckeyes 70 kills to 52 and held OSU to only a .126 attacking efficiency.OSU will see the floor again on Friday when they take on Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI), Missouri State and Green Bay during the Dr. Mary Jo Wynn Invitational in Springfield, Missouri.**Colin Gay contributed to this article
ESPN’s Dana Jacobson was supposed to jump into Mirror Lake on Thursday. Settling a bet made on national TV, “First Take” hosts Jay Crawford and Jacobson made an appearance at Ohio State’s campus on Thursday because Jacobson had wagered on Michigan to beat OSU in Nov. 27’s football game — and lost. But because of the extreme cold, Crawford allowed her to make a snow angel on the frozen lake instead, clad head to toe in scarlet and gray. “If you were here to witness it, you would say that’s the coolest thing,” Crawford said of the yearly tradition where students jump into the lake the Thursday night prior to the rivalry game. “It’s grown every year over the past five years.” Jacobson agreed, saying, “I like stuff like that.” After Jacobson made a snow angel, Crawford worked to make sure she wrote “Go Bucks” for the ESPN cameras to see. Jacobson instead wrote “Go Blue” in the snow and fled the scene. The second half of the wager involved Jacobson leading the OSU cheerleaders in a Buckeye cheer at Thursday’s basketball game against Michigan. Crawford, a Sandusky, Ohio, native, didn’t actually attend OSU, despite his affection for the Buckeyes. He earned his degree from Bowling Green State University. “It’s all the state university; this one just happens to be THE Ohio State University,” Crawford said. “When you’re born here, you’re given a name and a Buckeye card. That’s just the deal. I don’t care if you’re in Middletown or Cleveland or Dayton.” Jacobson said, “We like to let people choose (in Michigan).” Jacobson said this wasn’t her first trip to OSU’s campus. Her brother earned his undergraduate degree from Michigan, but attended graduate school at OSU. “He knows who to root for, though. When he got his Ph.D., when he was walking across (the stage) … and I came out here for his graduation, my mom and I shouted, ‘Go Blue,’ for him,” she said. “So, he knows. He knows who to root for. He’s been threatening the last few years, but he knows. He knows once you jump off, there’s no room to come back on.” The friendly banter never stopped. “Her brother is the brains of the family,” Crawford said.
Defensive line coach Larry Johnson celebrates after a Buckeye touchdown in the second half of the game against Michigan State on Nov. 10. Ohio State won 26-6. Credit: Casey Cascaldo | Photo EditorNoah Potter took another visit to Ohio State on Dec. 7, three days after head coach Urban Meyer had announced his retirement, handing offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Ryan Day the reins to one of the most prominent college football programs in the country. Potter, a four-star defensive end recruit, had been committed to the Buckeyes since April 16. And after the coaching change, his commitment never waned, and he signed his letter of intent on Dec. 19, the first day of the early-signing period. But when Potter was first introduced as a freshman defensive lineman at Ohio State, he was not talking about the loss of Meyer, the hiring of Day or the coaching inconsistencies. He was talking about one of the only parts of the Ohio State coaching staff that remained consistent through the coaching change: defensive line coach Larry Johnson. “Once me and Coach Day and Coach J had the in-home meeting and [he] told me Coach J was staying, I never wavered,” Potter said. “There was uncertainty, and I was kind of scared what was going to happen, but I committed to Coach J.” Potter, five-star defensive end Zach Harrison and three-star defensive tackle Jaden McKenzie are Johnson’s next assignments after five seasons of developing first-round talent on the Ohio State defensive line, including 14 defensive player or linemen of the year recipients — more than any Big Ten program has accumulated in the past 22 years.Now going into his first season as the head coach at Ohio State, Day knew he wanted to have Johnson by his side. Day said his defensive line coach was a major part of his success in the summer when he prepared to serve as the head coach for the first three games of the season during Meyer’s suspension. With all of the change, Johnson was one constant for Day, who promoted him to the associate head coach job along with being in charge of the defensive line room. “You have to win the locker room,” Day said. “What he’s recruited to the defensive line, how those guys feel about it. More than that, he’s a father figure to everybody on the team.” For Johnson, recruiting never waned. Potter, the No. 9 recruit from the state of Ohio in the 2019 class, according to the 247Sports composite rankings, said Johnson showed a level of genuine care for each of the players he interacted with, something he had not seen from other programs. “With all the schools I visited, nobody talked technique and was so passionate about it as much as him,” Potter said. “I knew he would treat me like one of his sons and embrace me and love me for me.” With the talent he has accumulated, Johnson has excelled on the field as well. This past season, the Buckeyes finished the season with 41 sacks in 14 games, No. 2 in the Big Ten. Twenty-three of the 41 total sacks were from Nick Bosa, Dre’Mont Jones and sophomore defensive end Chase Young. This was something Greg Mattison, the former defensive line coach at Michigan and newly named co-defensive coordinator at Ohio State, watched and admired from afar.“Whenever you play in a league together, you always get a chance to see the other team’s defensive line. And I would always watch their defensive line and watch his coaching,” Mattison said. “All you’ve got to do is look what he’s done with guys and where they’ve gone to the next level.” Harrison said he met Johnson in the spring of his freshman season at Olentangy Orange High School. In the past four years, the five-star defensive end said their relationship has been strong, and their feelings of trust are mutual. When Harrison came to Ohio State and began workouts as an early enrollee, the pressure returned — the pressure to perform in front of the coach who had previously coached Nick and Joey Bosa, Dre’Mont Jones and Michael Bennett. “You know he knows what he’s talking about,” Harrison said. “You don’t want to let him down. You go that much harder.” Harrison said he goes that much harder because of Johnson, the coach who helped him decide to come to Ohio State, the coach who, if not with the Buckeyes, would have changed the past four years of his recruitment. Harrison, Potter and McKenzie join a room filled with former five-star and four-star linemen, some of who, such as freshman Tyreke Smith, Taron Vincent and Tyler Friday, have barely touched the field. He wanted the camaraderie, the familial atmosphere, the brotherhood that Johnson has defined since 2014. He wanted the expectation of a unit led by Johnson to come down to his play, matching those who had come before him. But for Harrison, it’s simpler than that. The five-star defensive end wants to learn from whom he considers to be one of the best in the country. “Everything he knows, I want to know.”
Fourth-year in journalism and Ohio State gymnast Paris McGee views himself not as an athlete first but as a student. Credit: Alyssia Graves | Former Assistant Sports DirectorParis McGee Jr. noticed something about men’s gymnastics: there were no men on the floor that looked like him. When he got to college, he strived to change that.Since he was a little kid, McGee’s parents had him involved in a plethora of activities. He started off as a model and actor for Nickelodeon Jr and performed on Broadway. To add on to his long lists of talents, McGee wanted to learn how to flip. Fulfilling their ambitious boy’s dreams, his parents got him involved in gymnastics when he was 8, McGee said. Four months later, he said he was already good enough to make the competitive team.“In my first level six regional competition, I remember going into the competition and my coach telling us that the other kids were going to be a lot better than us so don’t expect to medal, just give it your best shot,” McGee said. “I walked away with six out of seven titles.” When McGee practiced the next day, he said no one acknowledged his success. It was then that he had noticed that his talents were far more advanced than his teammates, which everyone was shocked by. A few years later, schools like Iowa, Illinois and Nebraska began to show deep interest in McGee. He eventually decided to join the Cornhuskers.After his freshman year, McGee had decided that Nebraska was not the best fit for him. He struggled with the decision of giving up gymnastics altogether and going back home to pick up where he left off in his modeling career. “I was going to go back home to NYU to focus on school and officially quit gymnastics and maybe give acting and modeling another shot,” McGee, now a redshirt senior, said. “I decided to at least give gymnastics one more shot. So I came to Ohio State because I wanted to, at the very least, stop gymnastics on my terms and not anyone else’s.” According to the NCAA demographics research, there are currently 20 African American male gymnasts. This makes up roughly 6 percent of the sport. Remi Roberts, a student coach on the George Washington University women’s gymnastics team, said these numbers don’t surprise her. “As a little girl, there would only be about one black boy on each team or at a meet, if even that,” Roberts said. This is one aspect to college athletics that McGee has noticed and has bothered him throughout his collegiate career. McGee had trouble connecting with his teammates and feeling like he belonged due to a gap in their cultures that everyone expected him to adjust and fill in. It even made him wish that he had been on teams like track or football. He said, being the only black player on the team, he would go to a lot of social gatherings that were predominately white, making him stand out. When those roles were reversed, McGee said his friends had a difficult time. “One of my teammates left a party that we went to that was predominantly black because he was uncomfortable,” McGee said. “What hurt me was that what I live through on a day-to-day basis, he couldn’t even handle for 10 minutes, but it wasn’t an issue when I had to go through it.” McGee is aware that this culture of being expected to fit in isn’t limited to just him.Where he lacked support from other racial groups, he expected to find it in his own. This wasn’t the case. McGee said the lack of black male participation comes from the derogation of the sport in the black community. “The black community looks at gymnastics as an attack on our masculinity,” McGee said.According to McGee, there has only been one black male NCAA all-around gymnastics champion. He wants to see this number increase. McGee said he is willing to fight his battles to show little black boys in the crowd watching, like he once was, that they belong. “I did it so you can do it,” McGee said. “There’s no excuse. And if you do do it just know that you are going to have an army of people behind you.”
Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedOpposition Leader says Govt conspiring with GECOM to rig electionsMarch 21, 2019In “latest news”Court dismisses charges against GECOM Chair, Govt CommissionersMarch 15, 2019In “Court”Pres. Granger hopes for GECOM’s position on early elections within a weekAugust 9, 2019In “latest news” One day after private criminal charges were filed against top officials at the Guyana Elections Commission for allegedly conspiring to delay elections, President David Granger has written the entity requesting a work programme for the polls in the “shortest possible time”.President Granger wrote GECOM Chairman, Justice James Patterson this morning, a statement from the Ministry of the Presidency said.In his missive, the President noted it is essential that he is informed of the Commission’s readiness to deliver credible elections in Guyana.“I urge you to present your plans, programmes and financial needs which will guide my proclamation of a suitable date for elections,” the Head of State said in his correspondence to Justice Patterson.Elections are constitutionally due by March 21, 2019 which represents three months of the passage of the no-confidence motion against the Government on December 21, 2019.GECOM is accused of not treating the matter expeditiously, as its Chairman and Government-nominated Commissioners are pushing for house-to-house registration which can last until November 2019.Only yesterday, charges were filed against Justice Patterson, Vincent Alexander, Charles Corbin and Desmond Trotman.The charges were brought by Marcel Gaskin, the brother of Business Minister, Dominic Gaskin.Filed by Attorney-at-Law, Sanjeev Datadin, the charges allege that the defendants, during the period of December 22, 2018 and March 9, 2019 conspired to breach Article 106 of the Constitution of Guyana, which provided for the holding of General Elections in Guyana within three months from December 21, 2018.
Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedSystematic gun license programme to be implementedJune 25, 2015In “Business”Security Minister says Force short 7,000 officers as mining sector raises security concernsJune 22, 2018In “Crime”2AM shut down of bars, nightclubs is for citizens’ safety – RamjattanJuly 29, 2015In “Business” Public Security Minister, Khemraj Ramjattan believes that an important aspect of combating trafficking in persons (TIP) would be revoking licenses of Hotels once they are found guilty of committing the act.“We to must not only do damage to the profit making, even if it comes to that taking away their hotel licenses, when you get the evidence or not granting hotel licenses and business licenses and so on,” he posited.Ramjattan said that although persons may argue that those jobs and businesses create employment, the repugnance of that type of employment is important to the Government, which wants to be civil.Public Security Minister Khemraj RamjattanIn addition, the minister alluded to the fact the more collaboration among countries are needed in order to tackle the scourge of Trafficking in Persons (TIP).Ramjattan noted that the relevant authorities of countries should be alerted once someone who is suspected to be involved in TIP is travelling.“Hitting the networks hard, getting the information as to who are some of the suspects, let’s say in Trinidad or Tobago that are the culprits and forewarning us when they are coming to Guyana, red flagging, all of these are very important things that we would like to see happen so that we can nab them a nip in the bud, long before they start their operations in any country”, the Minister stated.He was at the time addressing the participants at the opening ceremony of a three-day workshop for stakeholders. He however, noted that implementing such a technique would be difficult, but is hopeful.Earlier this month it was revealed that some 243 persons were trafficked locally.“There were 243 victims and on one occasion they [officials] went to a club…39 were found in small rooms, obviously the presumption [was] that they were being trafficked, and of course alleged victims under 18, you have 11 out of that 243. The suspects involved, if I may breach some confidentiality of the police here, you have 57 of them,” the Minister divulged at a previous event.