September 20

Rory McIlroy ready to make winning comeback in Turkey

first_img ” I guess I always have the belief. The good thing for me is that I can draw on some of the great performances and the memories that I have from winning big tournaments and knowing that if I’ve done that before, there’s no reason why I can’t do that again.” McIlroy believes his putting has held him back since returning from injury, admitting it was more of a mental than a technical problem after finishing 26th in the Open. “I felt like every time I missed the putt, there was a question that followed it; Did I pull it, did I misread it?” McIlroy added. “And so I’ve worked quite a bit on routine, trying to free myself up and simplify it a little bit instead. I felt like sometimes I was making it a little bit more complicated than it has to be. “I feel I’m a good putter. I feel like I hole out well. I definitely hole out much better than I used to do. And when I get my eye in, I’m really good. But I don’t get my eye in as much as I’d like to. I’ll always be somewhat of a streaky putter.” As for his ankle, McIlroy revealed he has stepped up his fitness regime recently, adding: ” I’m pretty much back to where I need to be. “I’ve started to train the way I was before the injury again, and I’m happy about that. So I’m trying to get my game back into the shape that I know that I can and feel like I’ve made a few steps in the right direction.” The last time Rory McIlroy competed in Turkey, he “gave up a bit” during his first match in the Turkish Airlines World Golf Final, lost his remaining two as well and finished last in the eight-man exhibition event. Consolation came in the shape of USD300,000, an afternoon on the beach with then-girlfriend Caroline Wozniacki and a first Race to Dubai title five weeks later following a brilliant victory in the DP World Tour Championship. Three years on, McIlroy contests this week’s Turkish Airlines Open looking to complete an injury-affected 2015 in style with a fourth win of the season and a third money list title in four years. “I feel like a lot’s happened and a lot of time has gone by since that last win of mine back in May (Wells Fargo Championship),” said McIlroy, who ruptured a ligament in his left ankle during a game of football with friends on July 4, ruling him out of the Scottish Open and the defence of his Open and WGC-Bridgestone Invitational titles. “I’m just trying to finish the season off well. I’d like to win the Race to Dubai for a third time, that would be a great achievement. “I’d like to win at least one of these last three events that I’m playing. That would make me feel better about the end of the year. “From when I injured my ankle at the start of July, if I was to go from then to the end of the season without another win, especially with how I was playing up until that point, it would be very disappointing. “So I’ve got three opportunities coming up to try and get a win or two on the board and end this year on a positive, to at least go into next year with a bit of momentum.” McIlroy, who enjoys a 271,214-point lead over Danny Willett in the Race to Dubai, will partner Willett and fifth-placed Shane Lowry for the first two rounds in Turkey and will also contest next week’s WGC-HSBC Champions in Shanghai and the DP World Tour Championship in Dubai. The 26-year-old has slipped to third in the world rankings behind Jason Day and Jordan Spieth after the pair won three of the season’s four majors between them, but insists he is not concerned about sending his rivals a message. “I’m not thinking about those guys,” McIlroy added. “I’m just concentrating on myself and trying to get my game back to where I know that it can be, and if I can do that, then all the rest of that stuff will sort of take care of itself. Press Associationlast_img read more

September 17

Volleyball off to Michigan, MSU

first_imgSenior Brittney Dolgner totaled a team high 17 kills in a victory over Big Ten opponent Northwestern.[/media-credit]For the second time this season, the Wisconsin volleyball team will take on both Michigan and Michigan State in the same weekend.Three weeks ago, the Badgers welcomed the Wolverines and Spartans to the Field House and greeted them with wins on consecutive nights. Now, the volleyball team will head to Ann Arbor and East Lansing to take on the two squads in more hostile environments.The Badgers have some momentum on their side, as they are coming off a four-set win over Northwestern last Saturday. In that match, Wisconsin had a season-high 14 blocks and had three players with double-digit kills, including 17 by outside hitter Brittney Dolgner.Going into face Michigan, the Badgers are in fifth place in the Big Ten at the midpoint of the conference season, only one game behind the Wolverines. Surprisingly, Michigan State — a team that was ranked No. 18 when it lost to Wisconsin — is currently in 10th place in the conference.Michigan has also been faltering as of late, having lost three of its last five matches. However, the Wolverines are still ranked No. 13 in the country and have two strong players that guide their strong offense, which averages 14.16 kills per set.Wolverines’ outside hitter Juliana Paz is fifth in the Big Ten in kills, averaging 3.73 kills per set, and is fourth in the conference in serving. In terms of distributing the ball, the Wolverines also have one of the top setters in Lexi Zimmerman, who leads the Big Ten with 912 assists.However, the Badgers are more concerned with Zimmerman’s offensive mindset. The junior setter averages 1.49 kills per set and is known to often tip the ball over the net when least expected.“I know she’s very offensive, so we’re going to keep on our toes and be ready for what she throws at us,” UW setter Janelle Gabrielsen said. “If she does get her kills, just shake it off and get ready for the next play.”Against Michigan State, the Badgers will be facing a squad that, after beginning the Big Ten season 2-2, has dropped its last six matches, with its last win coming on Oct. 3. Nevertheless, UW head coach Pete Waite believes the Spartans’ 2-8 conference record does not reflect how good a team they actually are.“Michigan State is definitely better than their record indicates,” he said. “They’ve had some great wins this season. … They’re a physical team, and we know they’re a dangerous team and we’re going to have to play really well to get a win on the road.”Regardless, having played both these teams earlier in the season gives the Badgers some confidence going into a tough road trip. Wisconsin has yet to sweep a road series this year, but with wins against Michigan and Michigan State only a few weeks ago, outside hitter Kirby Toon believes the team is prepared for the weekend.“We’re going in really prepared, and we know their tendencies a little bit better than we did before,” Toon said.“It gives us confidence knowing that we played well and served tough,” Waite added. “The challenge is now to do it on the road. … We have to sustain our energy for the whole match.”However, beating the teams prior to this weekend adds some pressure to the Badgers, who, at 5-5, trail Michigan in the Big Ten. Beating the Wolverines this weekend could move Wisconsin into the upper echelon of the conference.“It puts some pressure on us,” Toon said. “It’s obviously going to be a difficult playing atmosphere, but we just have to go in with the mentality when we played them here, which is to just go out and play our best volleyball.”With the Big Ten season halfway over, the Badgers know how easy it is to fall behind in a tough conference. Regardless, sitting in fifth place and only one game out of fourth, Toon believes the team has the tools to make a run and stay relevant in the Big Ten.“I think we’ve been improving throughout the whole season,” Toon said. “We’re starting to get in a groove where everyone is comfortable with one another. I think the second half will be great and, as long as we play the way we can, it will be a great season.”last_img read more

September 17

USC to receive master lease for Coliseum

first_imgLos Angeles Memorial Coliseum officials acknowledged Wednesday that they anticipate a modified lease between the Coliseum Commission and USC to be released within the next week.The proposed lease, once finalized, will be subject to a final vote at the commission’s next monthly meeting on May 2 or at a later date.Control · Coliseum Commissioners Barry Sanders (left) and Zev Yaroslavsky (right) discussed the proposed master lease of the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on Wednesday. – Adrian Hoffmann | Daily TrojanUSC has been in negotiations with the Coliseum’s nine-member governing body since September in an effort to obtain operational control of the state and federal landmark, which has been run by the commission for the last 88 years.The university has been a tenant of the Coliseum since 1923, with the Trojan football team playing a majority of its home games at the 93,000-seat venue in Exposition Park.“We hope that through these negotiations the parties can agree upon a long-term lease that allows the Coliseum to be restored to its former glory and ensures its viability for many generations to come,” said Thomas Sayles, USC’s senior vice president for university relations, in a statement released to the Daily Trojan. “Our goal is to make the Coliseum a proud landmark and gathering place for all Angelenos. We support public disclosure and discussion of all lease terms before any deal is approved.”According to a lease draft obtained by the Los Angeles Times, USC would be responsible for staffing the facility, along with day-to-day management, event scheduling and other obligations over the next 42 years. It would also have the opportunity to manage the adjacent Los Angeles Sports Arena or to demolish the facility to construct a soccer-specific stadium or parking lot.David Israel, president of the Coliseum Commission, and L.A. County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky, a member of the Coliseum Commission, declined to comment on the proposed lease draft or the negotiations.Under the proposal, the university would receive naming and advertising rights, which would provide a source of revenue needed to fund stadium renovations that are expected to cost several million dollars.In June commission acknowledged that it could not afford to make the necessary improvements to the facility, as required by the existing 25-year lease, signed in May 2008.USC will be expected to cover the costs of the new video board and sound system, as well, according to the Los Angeles Times.City Councilmember Bernard C. Parks, a member of the Coliseum Commission and City Council Representative for the 8th District, said he has concerns about the potential of the Coliseum, a public facility, being run by a private entity, such as USC.“It looks like ’SC wrote the lease and we just nodded,” Parks said.USC has attempted to obtain the master lease before, lobbying in 2007 for operational control of the publicly owned venue before agreeing upon its current lease.“It sets a precedent in the fact that folks are trying to work themselves out of a job,” Parks said. “They’re so intent on saying, ‘Well, USC is going to fix this, so let’s just give it to them.’ I think we’re losing sight of what the meaningfulness of the park and the facility is to the community, and they’re not taking that into account at all. The community deserves a bit more sensitivity.”If USC obtains operational control of the Coliseum, public events could still be held at the facility, including the annual Fourth of July fireworks celebration, but the university would be given the option of limiting the number of events to eight per year, as outlined under the proposal.USC would also have first-refusal rights if an NFL team were to want to use the facility while a stadium in Downtown Los Angeles is being constructed.last_img read more

September 16

Schafer: It doesn’t matter Syracuse beat FSU. It’s more important they finished.

first_imgAt the ACC Kickoff in July, Syracuse head coach Dino Babers didn’t want a win total to define his team in the 2018 season.“My thing is this: I think that we’ve been in some close games,” Babers said. “If we’re going to turn into winners, we need to win some. What’s the number on that? I don’t know.”Success for his team could be seen in finishing close games, which it’s failed to do in years past (in 2017, Syracuse played Louisiana State, North Carolina State, Miami and Florida State within 10 points on the road but lost all four), Babers said during training camp. On Saturday against FSU, in SU’s first real test of the season, the Orange dismantled the Seminoles, 30-7.After failing to score touchdowns twice on first-and-goal opportunities, Syracuse (3-0, 1-0 Atlantic Coast) tallied 24 second half points without starting quarterback Eric Dungey. The defense sacked FSU quarterback Deondre Francois on consecutive series late in the third quarter that negated an FSU comeback.In Syracuse’s largest victory in the ACC under Babers, the Orange pummeled a lesser, yet reputable opponent.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textFrom the outside, the win — Syracuse’s first over FSU in 52 years — could be seen as historically significant. But through three games, the Jimbo Fisher-less Florida State team hasn’t looked like the program which won three conference titles in the last seven years. The win isn’t noteworthy because of the opponent. It matters that Syracuse finished.“To get a win on a football team like that where the game was definitely a close game for three quarters,” Babers said,  “and then to pull away late like that late in the fourth quarter that’s very, very satisfying as a coach.In 2016, Babers and Syracuse were in the position head coach Willie Taggart and FSU are in now. In the Orange’s third game under Babers, against a then Taggart-led South Florida team, Syracuse was outmatched. The Orange lost 45-20, allowing 454 yards of offense to a USF team that would eventually go 11-2. The loss pushed Syracuse to a 1-2 start in Babers’ first year.A year later, in Week 2, Syracuse choked against Middle Tennessee State in the Carrier Dome. In Scott Shafer’s return, Syracuse entered the fourth quarter tied with MTSU, a team which would record a 7-6 marking after Conference USA play. On paper, Syracuse is better this season than FSU, which won more conference game than SU a year ago. The Orange averages more points and yards per game while holding opponents to fewer yards than FSU has in its first three games. And on Saturday, the Orange created separation against Florida State, which it failed to do against MTSU and USF in years prior.Syracuse’s experienced defensive line torched the FSU offensive line. Tommy DeVito rushed and threw for a touchdown after Eric Dungey left the game early. SU allowed one conversion on third down.To compete for a bowl game, which Syracuse has now set itself up to do, it needs to win the 50-50 battles against other fringe-bowl opponents. Saturday, the Orange did that.The game shouldn’t be glorified because Syracuse beat Florida State. The teams of Seminoles’ past aren’t the team SU beat. But the Orange showed change, too. The ending of Saturday’s game is what Babers and his staff have searched for over the last two years.Now the challenge, as Babers has said many times before, is to do it again.Josh Schafer is the sports editor for The Daily Orange where his column appears occasionally. He can be reached at or @Schafer_44. After forcing three turnovers in the first half, Syracuse’s defense folded in the second frame, allowing 220 yards of total offense and three touchdowns.The first play of the fourth quarter was a 49-yard Broncos touchdown pass. The next MTSU series featured three passes for more than 10 yards and ended in another touchdown.Against Florida State on Saturday, Syracuse didn’t collapse. The Seminoles scored once in the fourth quarter with just more than six minutes remaining. Their previous attempts for a comeback had failed, usually due to a Syracuse sack or quarterback pressure. For the first time under Babers, Syracuse held an ACC team to one touchdown.“This performance shows a lot of growth from the team we were two years ago and even last year,” defensive end Kendall Coleman said. “It means everything going forward because this is going to be major in establishing who we are this season.”While media members attempted to compare Saturday’s game to the Virginia Tech game in 2016 and Clemson last year during Saturday’s post-game interviews, there wasn’t a real correlation. Florida State was favored by three points and senior defensive end Alton Robinson added after the game he didn’t think the FSU win was an upset.FSU entered the game 1-1 with a 24-3 home loss to No.13 Virginia Tech and a 10-point over Samford on its resume. The Seminoles had played 10 linemen in their first two games and failed to score in the first quarter in both.The Seminoles team that entered the Carrier Dome on Saturday wasn’t the same program that beat Syracuse 10 times in a row since 1966. After a 7-6 season last year, FSU was forced to replace Jimbo Fisher, who coached the Seminoles to three ACC titles. Three games into Taggart’s tenure, the team is still transitioning.“We’re not playing like we should be,” said Taggart of his team which opened the season ranked No.19. “They should all be frustrated with themselves. We all need to look within ourselves to see what we’re doing and if we’re doing what we’re supposed to be doing.” Published on September 16, 2018 at 8:11 pmcenter_img Comments Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

September 16

Winning return for Bennett

first_imgHe took victory on yesterday’s opening 221 kilometre stage relegating multi-grand Tour stage winner Nacer Bouhanni and this years Milan San Remo and Paris Roubaix winner John Degenkolb to the minor placings.The Bora-Argon 18 rider holds a 3 second lead going into today’s 180 kilometre stage.The 24 year old hasn’t raced since his spectacular high speed crash in Belgium last month.last_img

August 26

All-Star selections for Dodgers Matt Kemp and Kenley Jansen come as redemption

first_imgPitchers and reserves are not chosen by fans. Major league players choose most of the reserves and pitchers. The commissioner’s office selects the final members.The All-Star managers – Houston’s A.J. Hinch and Roberts – have some input but do not have the final say. Choosing replacements for injured players are likewise “out of the manager’s hands,” Roberts said.“I can suggest all I want, but it’s not up to me,” he said. “It’s up to the commissioner’s office, the player department. So you take the fan vote, the player vote, and then that. Those three components make up the roster.”As for All-Star snubs, some Dodgers have a good case.Dodgers infielder Max Muncy entered Sunday’s game tied for third in the NL in home runs (20). He would lead the league in slugging percentage (.617) and be second in on-base percentage (.410) if he had enough at-bats to qualify.Muncy was one of five players chosen for the online-only “Final Vote,” which will determine the 32nd and final player in the NL roster. Jesus Aguilar (Milwaukee), Matt Carpenter (St. Louis), Brandon Belt (San Francisco) and Trea Turner (Washington) are the other finalists. Third baseman Justin Turner won the “Final Vote” last year.Related Articles Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Whicker: Dustin May yet another example of the Dodgers’ eye for pitching Kemp’s 2,930,353 votes trailed only Atlanta’s Nick Markakis among NL outfielders.Jansen was chosen by Major League Baseball to appear in the All-Star Game July 17 in Washington, D.C. Josh Hader, Brad Hand, Sean Doolittle and Felipe Vasquez are the other relief pitchers on the NL roster.The Dodgers tried to ease Jansen’s workload after a long 2017 season, so he pitched sparingly in spring training. Jansen was also beset by a hamstring injury late in camp. When the regular season began, the rust showed. Jansen blew two of his first four save opportunities. He said it was not until a month into the season that he rounded into opening day shape.Entering Sunday, Jansen had converted 22 of his past 23 save opportunities, and was worthy of a third straight All-Star selection.“It feels so much (more) special than the last two years,” Jansen said. “The last two years, how I started, it was pretty much ‘I’m going to be an All-Star.’ This one, basically, a very slow April. I take all those criticisms and put it on my shoulder and that motivated me. This is special today.” Pitcher Ross Stripling became eligible for an earned-run average title with his start Saturday. His 2.22 ERA ranks second among qualified NL pitchers to Jacob DeGrom. He is 7-2 and leads the Dodgers in strikeouts, with 103 in 89 1/3 innings.“There’s still hope,” Roberts said of Stripling. “Obviously every year … starters on their start days are not available to pitch in the All-Star Game, and certain other guys get opportunities. Ross is one of those guys. In our opinion, he’s an All-Star, had an All-Star first half. Not by way of injury but hopefully by way of guys not being available, Ross would get that opportunity.”Stripling will start for the Dodgers on Thursday in San Diego, which would allow him to pitch in the game July 17.ALSOWalker Buehler touched 97 mph and reported no effects of his rib microfracture after a five-inning simulated game at Angel Stadium. The right-hander faced a handful of major league teammates, as well as minor league outfielder Jon Littell, a 37th-round draft pick out of Oklahoma State. … Roberts said that Buehler will start again prior to the All-Star break. … The probable starting pitchers for the Dodgers’ four-game series against the San Diego Padres: Clayton Kershaw will face Luis Perdomo on Monday; Rich Hill will face Eric Lauer on Tuesday; Kenta Maeda will face Joey Lucchesi on Wednesday; Ross Stripling will face Tyson Ross on Thursday.UP NEXTDodgers (LHP Clayton Kershaw, 2-4, 2.86 ERA) at Padres (RHP Luis Perdomo, 1-2, 6.86 ERA), MLB Network (out-of-market only), SportsNet LA, 7 p.m. ANAHEIM – For Matt Kemp and Kenley Jansen, their All-Star selections Sunday were each a measure of redemption.Kemp, who was elected by fans to start in the National League outfield, had not been an All-Star since 2012. He entered Sunday night’s game leading the Dodgers in batting average (.317) and RBIs (57). His 15 home runs are four shy of his total from last season, when he played 115 games for the Atlanta Braves.Sign up for our Inside the Dodgers newsletter. Be the best Dodger fan you can be by getting daily intel on your favorite team. Subscribe here.After losing close to 40 pounds and being traded back to the team that drafted him, Kemp has appeared in 84 games this season. That health, Manager Dave Roberts said, has allowed Kemp to “re-ascend” to his peak performance as a batter.“When any player’s healthy they play better,” Roberts said. “Even last year, he was off to a great start in Atlanta and had a (right) hamstring injury. When you’re not playing for a championship, not winning, that also takes a toll on you. For him, things are aligned right now. He’s in great shape. He’s been consistent with his workouts, we’re giving him days off his feet and he’s performing. A lot of it definitely is attributable to his health.”center_img Dodgers’ Justin Turner looking rejuvenated on defense Dodgers’ hot-hitting Corey Seager leaves game with back injury Dodgers’ Dave Roberts says baseball’s unwritten rules ‘have changed, should change’ Dodgers bench slumping Cody Bellinger for a day last_img read more

August 26

Whicker: Austin Barnes emerges from the depths, helps Dodgers win Game 2

first_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Barnes worked Jeffress to 3-and-1 and took a strike. The 3-and-2 pitch was a low 80s curveball, the same one Jeffress had used to strike out Yasiel Puig. Fearlessness was required to take it. To strike out looking would be the worst kind of defeat, short of a double play.Instead, Barnes let it settle down and away, for ball four. He trotted to first, Manny Machado trotted home, and it was 3-2.Grandal then pinch-hit into an inning-ending double play. But that was a mere postponement. Turner, just when you were wondering if it was time for him to emerge, smoked a two-run homer off Jeffress in the eighth. He held the bat high, like a torch, as the ball descended.“To see how he controls at-bats, that’s next-level stuff,” Barnes said.“He’s probably the face of it,” Roberts said, “the glue of our team.”As in Game 1, the Dodgers had rebelled against the Milwaukee bullpen. They are 12 for 25 against it, and that includes an 0-for-13 start. But stats lie hollow without results. Actually, they just lie. Who knows what happens, or doesn’t, if Barnes lets the bases stay loaded?“It popped out of his hand a little bit different,” Barnes said, referring to ball four. “It started one way and went the other. I didn’t think any of the pitches were that close, to be honest.”He also had to call pitches for eight pitchers.“That can be exhausting,” he said. “I’m going to sleep well on the plane. You have to have a plan for each guy, take into consideration what each guy has.“I haven’t had the year I did last year. I’ve just had to deal with it and stay ready.”But the Dodgers benefited from Milwaukee’s case of bullpenitis[comment=” (cq)”], which becomes a national outbreak every October.Miley, who had beaten the Dodgers 1-0 in July, gave up a single to the second hitter he faced (Turner) and another to the 19th (Chris Taylor). The other Dodgers were 0 for 17 with no walks, and none got to second base. They were jerking Miley’s changeups harmlessly or taking surprise fastballs down the middle. It was the starkest bit of baseball hypnotism since “The Naked Gun.”But Miley left in a two-out situation after his 74th pitch. The Brewers went to right-handed power pitchers. And the game reverted to Dodgers speed.Perhaps this game was lost when lefty Josh Hader worked three innings on Friday instead of two. Perhaps, with the off days, the Brewers’ ’pen will still be mightier. But the Dodgers relievers won the weekend.They have given up two runs in 9-2/3 innings, both solo home runs.“The Milwaukee guys have power arms,” Barnes said. “But the more you see them, the better idea you get. We saw that last year in the World Series with (Brandon) Morrow and our guys.”“I’m speaking for them,” Roberts said of his relievers. “I know that they’re taking this personal. There’s not a lot said about them. But when you look across the diamond and you see people doing the same thing you’re doing and they’re getting more notoriety or whatever, people have pride.”The Dodgers go to Walker Buehler, their best arm, on Monday. By now the Brewers know they have to beat him and 24 others. He was an apt symbol for the difference between the smooth cruise of last season and the rutted road of this one, between a .289 average with an .895 OPS then, and a .205 and a .619 now. He also went from 38 RBIs to 14.Would the season last long enough for Barnes to chime in? The regular season wouldn’t. The postseason would. Thanks to the behind-the-plate shakes that Yasmani Grandal suffered Friday night, Barnes got his chance against Wade Miley, the Milwaukee left-hander.Roberts vaguely mentioned some “history” Barnes had with Miley, but actually that consisted of 1 for 4.  And Barnes was as ineffectual as all the Dodgers in the 5-2/3 innings that Miley was allowed to pitch.But in the seventh inning, Barnes came up with bases loaded, one out, one run in and the Dodgers trailing 3-1. Without a win, L.A. would need to win four of five to escape the National League Championship Series.So when Barnes looked out at Jeremy Jeffress, the normal Milwaukee closer, this was real life. There were no pinch-hitters to rescue, no place to put Barnes.center_img MILWAUKEE — Dodger Depth is a cliche by now. Manager Dave Roberts almost apologizes for using it.But catchphrases don’t become shopworn unless they’re true.On Saturday, the Dodgers went to the bottom of the manifest.Austin Barnes had not started a game since Sept. 23. In 2017 he started 14 of the 15 postseason games.last_img read more

August 14

Thanksgiving FanDuel Picks: Daily fantasy football lineup advice for Thursday’s DFS tournaments

first_imgFLEX Michael Thomas, Saints @ Falcons ($9,200). Thomas is another player you pretty much have to have. If you fade him and he has a bad game, you’ll be in great shape. Far, far more likely is that he’ll gave a good game, though, and you’ll be mad at yourself for not paying up. MORE WEEK 13 DFS: Stacks | Values | Lineup BuilderD/ST Chicago Bears @ Lions ($5,000). The Bears D/ST hasn’t been all that good this year, especially in sacks and takeaways. But the Lions will either be playing a gimpy Jeff Driskel (hamstring) or David Blough at QB, so how can we not start the Bears when there are no other obvious choices? Again, this might be too chalky, but hopefully we have enough differentiation with guys like Knox, Miller, and Gage to offset that. MORE THURSDAY FANTASY: DraftKings lineup | DK Showdown picks | Start/SitThanksgiving NFL DFS Lineup: FanDuel tournament picksQB Matt Ryan, Falcons vs. Saints ($7,700). Ryan threw for two touchdowns against the Saints in Week 10, but with just 182 yards, it didn’t seem like he had that big of a day. Then, he failed to notch a score against Tampa’s porous pass defense last week. With Drew Brees ($8,500) being the obvious pay-up pick and Mitchell Trubisky ($6,800) being the obvious matchup-based value pick, we’re hoping Ryan gets lost in the shuffle behind other high-floor options like Dak Prescott ($8,200) and Josh Allen ($7,800). He could easily have the biggest game of the day, and it could be at relatively low ownership, at least as far as three-game slates go. If Julio Jones (shoulder) is out, that would obviously limit Ryan’s upside, but he still has decent enough receivers to pay off (see below). RB Alvin Kamara, Saints @ Falcons ($8,300). Kamara has been a disappointment lately, failing to dent the end zone in all but one game this year. Yes, you read that right. His perceived ceiling is probably higher than it actually is, so there’s a strong case to be made for fading him. We’re going the other route and paying up for the talent. Kamara is still averaging 4.6 yards per carry and 6.7 receptions per game. If there was ever a time for a vintage Kamara breakout game, why not in the prime-time Thanksgiving spotlight?WEEK 13 PPR RANKINGS: Running back | Wide receiver | Tight endRB David Montgomery, Bears @ Lions ($5,900). We’ve been burned by Montgomery in the past, but this matchup and price are too good to ignore. The Lions allow the most FanDuel points to RBs, and Montgomery is priced as an RB8 on a day with just six teams playing. This might be the chalkiest pick of the whole day, but if Montgomery has a huge game, we’ll need him on our squad to cash. WR Calvin Ridley, Falcons vs. Saints ($6,500). Ridley might also be super chalky, especially if Jones (shoulder) is out, but for now, we’ll stack him with Ryan and fade Jones. Ridley has put up 228 yards and two TDs in the past two games, so owners will be on him, but he’s clearly a talented receiver who’s shown a nose for the end zone — often in garbage time — the past two seasons. WEEK 13 NON-PPR RANKINGS:Quarterback | Running back | Wide receiver | Tight end | D/ST | KickerWR Russell Gage, Falcons vs. Saints ($5,400). Gage is getting talked up this week because of 10-target Week 12. If Jones is out, Gage could also become a chalky pick, but for now, we think he’ll give us enough differentiation to be worth using. The Falcons will likely be throwing a lot against the Saints even if the score is close, as New Orleans has proved tough to run against. With Austin Hooper (knee) still ailing, Gage is the most likely candidate to soak up those extra mid-range targets. WR Anthony Miller, Bears @ Lions ($5,300). An RB-WR stack doesn’t always correlate, but with just three games on the slate, we’re taking that chance. Miller has seen 20 targets the past two weeks, catching 12 for 131 yards. With Taylor Gabriel (concussion) likely out, Miller will be the unquestioned No. 2 receiver against Detroit’s struggling pass defense. If you add in the Darius Slay-on-Allen Robinson factor, it’s possible Miller will lead the Bears in receiving. Given his WR15 pricing, he’s tough to pass up.WEEK 13 DFS LINEUPS:FD Cash | FD GPP | DK Cash | DK GPP | Y! Cash | Y! GPPTE Dawson Knox, Bills @ Cowboys ($4,500). The Cowboys struggle against TEs (fifth-most FD points allowed), and Knox gets regular playing time. He hasn’t done much with it, but he’s athletic enough to make a big play or score a short TD. That’s all we’re looking for here, as there really aren’t any obvious plays at the position.  Few things provide a better distraction from your family on Thanksgiving than football and fantasy football. Now, imagine gambling on fantasy football in the form of NFL DFS contests — perfect recipe for not paying attention to your grandma. Our Thursday FanDuel tournament lineup can help you do just that. These Thanksgiving daily fantasy football picks aren’t guaranteed to win you money, but they are guaranteed to distract you when your uncle asks questions about your life.Our primary strategy involves fading two Thanksgiving staples — the Lions and Cowboys. Plenty of people will fade Lions players, but the Cowboys are a much bigger risk. Guys like Ezekiel Elliott, Michael Gallup, and Dak Prescott could easily have big games, but we’re hoping casual fans go overweight on “America’s Team” and we can differentiate our lineup with some other picks.last_img read more

August 13

Company wants to construct underground transmission line to take solar, wind power from Mason City to Chicago

first_imgMASON CITY — A development company wants to construct an almost 350-mile, 2100-megawatt, high voltage underground transmission line to transport wind and solar energy from Mason City to the Chicago area. Direct Connect Development Company will construct the majority of the SOO Green Renewable Rail project along rail owned by the Canadian Pacific.Direct Connect Development spokesman Craig Schoenfeld says the goal is to take the renewable energy being produced in Iowa to markets out east. “We’re looking at developing an underground transmission line starting at about Cerro Gordo County, through eight counties in northeast Iowa and across Illinois, that will eventually wind up in the Pennsylvania-New Jersey grid for companies and consumers to utilize Iowa’s wind energy.”Schoenfeld says the project’s construction methods will limit impacts to land owners and to the environment by boring under sensitive habitat, limiting the impact on birds and other endangered species.  “The goal of that is that there’s a natural infrastructure that exists currently, and we want to utilize that to minimize the impact on the environment and the landowners, and we think that’s the right way to do that by putting it underground through an existing corridor.”Schoenfeld says existing infrastructure between Chicago and the east coast will take Iowa’s renewable energy out to those who want to use it.  “Commercial companies, whether it’s Facebook, Google, Amazon or whoever, are increasingly looking to purchase green energy, wind, solar and the like, and be able to utilize that and market as they so choose in their company profiles. We’re looking to tap into that. We believe the market place exists currently, the demand is there currently, and our goal is to move it from point A to point B, and what lacks is that transmission infrastructure.”Schoenfeld says the project will be a boost to renewable energy production in north-central Iowa.  “Not only for existing production that is currently there but for potential new investment in wind and solar as the market dictates. The market exists, it’s not necessarily here in the Midwest. We have the abundance to have the ability to produce it, and now by creating the infrastructure to move that product where that higher demand is, we think that’s going to be good for both the producers as well as the consumers.”Schoenfeld says they hope to start the project in about 18 months, with a completion date of 2024. A similar project stalled three years ago when the Rock Island Clean Line withdrew its plans for a $2 billion, 500-mile overhead transmission line that would have taken wind energy across 16 counties from northwest Iowa into Illinois.last_img read more

August 13

Euro fever grips France, Portugal as final looms

first_imgParis, France | AFP | Patriotic fervour gripped Euro 2016 hosts France and Portugal on Friday with Antoine Griezmann and Cristiano Ronaldo cast as the rival superheros ahead of the tournament final.France saw a return to the feverish days of 1998 when Zinedine Zidane guided the country to a World Cup triumph. Portugal go into Sunday’s final seeking to erase their football nightmare of losing the Euro 2004 final on home ground to unheralded Greece.National celebrations broke out across France after Griezmann scored twice in a famous 2-0 win over Germany in Marseille on Thursday.A penalty awarded seconds before half-time caused turmoil in the German camp. Griezmann made no mistake with the spot kick and scored again in the second half to extend his lead as the tournament’s top scorer with six goals.It was France’s first victory over their rivals in a major tournament since 1958. There have been three heartbreak defeats in the World Cup since.Air horns and blue-red-white tricolor flags dominated the night-time streets after the win. Some 90,000 people watching the game on a giant screen under the Eiffel Tower erupted in joy.Riot police charged youths who caused trouble on the Champs Elysees avenue however.“There is a lot of fervour and a lot of joy and happiness,” said French coach Didier Deschamps. “This team has done everything possible to be loved and it makes me very proud.” ‘No doubt’ for PM Politicians sought to catch the wave of football popularity. “I never doubted France’s victory” in the semi-final, said Prime Minister Manuel Valls, adding that he was also “confident” for the final.After their image was tainted by player strikes at the 2010 World Cup and star striker Karim Benzema being implicated in a sextape blackmail, polls show the French nation overwhelmingly behind Deschamps’ team.Tens of thousands have also packed Lisbon squares to watch Portugal’s matches on giant screens. Much attention will be on superstar Ronaldo, who has won virtually everything as a club player but no trophy with his country.Portugal midfielder Joao Mario said Friday that his country’s 11 million people also believe their team will win.“Probabilities don’t win matches,” said the Sporting Lisbon star when asked about French hopes of a home win on Sunday.“They can believe that but 100 percent of the Portuguese people believe in a Portugal win,” he told a press conference.“Twelve years ago we were playing in Portugal and there was an incredible atmosphere across the country,” he said. Germany ‘bitter’France’s win was set up by a penalty in injury time of the first half that infuriated Germany, who had dominated the game.Italian referee Nicola Rizzoli spotted German captain Bastian Schweinsteiger handle the ball.Griezmann sent goalkeeper Manuel Neuer the wrong way with his spot kick.German coach Joachim Loew said he had to “calm the players down” in the dressing room at half-time because of the penalty.Germany renewed their control of the ball in the second half but Griezmann rattled them again with a 72nd minute goal. Neuer fumbled a cross and Griezmann fired the ball home through the goalkeeper’s legs.Deschamps said “we found it tough but we didn’t give up,” praising his players’ determination.“I’ve always believed in my players,” said Deschamps. “The ones I chose to form this squad have repaid me handsomely. This is their story, their victory.”Griezmann was particularly relieved to have scored the penalty, having missed one when Atletico Madrid played in the Champions League final against Ronaldo’s Real Madrid in May.“I wanted to take a penalty again in an important moment and I’m happy I did, and happy I scored,” he said.Germany felt the defeat was harsh.“We have played well at these European Championship finals, but we’re out. That’s very bitter,” said Neuer. “It’s not a fair result.”Loew refused to say whether he would extend his time as Germany’s manager beyond the campaign for the 2018 World Cup in Russia.Share on: WhatsAppcenter_img Portugal lost the Euro 2004 final in Lisbon to Greece in one of the biggest upsets in the history of the tournament.“I hope this time we will be the winners,” said Joao Mario. “We believe in ourselves, we have always believed. The coach (Fernando Santos) has given us this confidence, this spirit.”last_img read more