9:00 PM 14-year-old Jonathan Pitre, who suffers from a condition called Epidermolysis bullosa that causes painful blisters all over his body, was signed by the Ottawa Senators to a one-day contract as a team scout on Thursday.
8:30 PM The Deseret News profiles Nathan Honey, an American Fork (Utah) High School football player who has four brothers that suffer from muscular dystrophy: "I always dedicate my games to them. I always feel like I need to perform for them, even though they're not watching. I can feel them .... I carry that in my heart."
(With Memphis O-Line, on-time delivery has never been more important)
Smith is an undersized 23-year-old redshirt sophomore who transferred from the Univ. of Miami after seeing little playing time with the Hurricanes. He beat out true freshman Ryan Williams despite the 6-5, 220-pound Williams going 15-of-17 for 186 yards and three touchdowns in the Tigers’ spring game.
So why did rookie Memphis head coach Larry Porter pick Smith over Williams? Read more…
The ASSOCIATED PRESS has the latest piece celebrating the obscene devotion of Memphis hoops coach Josh Pastner to his job. Like you, I’ve heard too many stories about Pastner’s fastidious approach to coaching, but something new caught my eye in the AP profile.
(So no granola, cereal or fat-free frozen yogurt ever? Amazing!)
Pastner, the new Memphis coach, says he has never sipped alcohol, smoked a cigarette, tried caffeine or drunk a soda. He is no goody two-shoes; he is just the coaching equivalent of a gym rat.
“He’s always said he would want to tell his players if he wants to be a role model for his players, he would want to make sure what he told them, he lived so he decided never to drink alcohol, and we never gave him soda,” Hal Pastner said.
The last person touting something like that was Todd Marinovich, who most recently was busted for meth while skateboarding as a 40-something in Orange County.
Josh Pastner, thanks to his own relentless self-promotion to the media, might be the most written-about, first-year college hoops coach in history. Call me a cynic, but I’m very dubious of all that he has to claimed media lap dogs over the years.
A clue why I think Pastner is a serial exaggerator came from a single, seemingly innocuous claim thrown into the AP piece: Read more…
We’ve mentioned it plenty of times already here, but one of the crucial aspects of life for a pro athlete these days is the fact that they’re young and have unholy amounts of money. There’s probably no primer a target than they.
(This man had a stalker. Don’t laugh. Why you gotta be laughing?)
So it’s pretty understandable that someone like Nets guard Chris Douglas-Roberts - he of the bengal kitten fame - would have some, ahem, devoted female fans. Fortunately, he’s got a Twitter feed, and as CDR explained a few days ago, he’s “approachable” on there. He’s even got stories, including one opus of 20+ tweets about a stalker he had last year. Was she crazy? Holy smokes yes, and CDR’s got details. Lots of details.
It’s hard to blame Chris Douglas-Roberts for being proud of his collegiate career. Even as the NCAA declared the Tigers’ 2007-08 season “vacated“, he was still part of a program that, over two seasons, went 71-6 and went to two Elite Eights. Hooray, Tigers, hooray.
(Aw, he’s SOOO CUUUUTE! Who’s that cute kitty gonna rip my larynx out with one swipe? I said WHO’S that cute kitty??)
But while most athletes who want to honor their alma mater do something like buy memorabilia or get tattoos, CDR (as the kids call him) decided to take things one step further and raise bengal tigers in his house. This makes sense because WAIT WAIT WAIT… he’s raising bengal tigers in his own house?! Multiple? Plural? Tigers with an S? Oh yeah, that should work out beautifully.
Andrea McNulty, the woman who has sued Ben Roethlisberger for allegedly raping her last year, has had her credibility and motivations called into question many times since her lawsuit was filed in July. But now, in an attempt to make her seem both less crazy and less of a gold digger, she has offered to withdraw the lawsuit.
Oh, if it were only that simple. As you’ll see, McNulty’s “offer” may seem like a noble pursuit, but it stipulates that Big Ben do the one thing he’ll never, ever do. So, without further ado, here are the three conditions for having the lawsuit dropped:
I have always thought it’s weird when people bring up the idea of removing steroid-era numbers from baseball’s official record book, as if history can be fixed simply by ignoring it. Say what you want about Barry Bonds or Mark McGwire, but every single home run they hit counted in a real-life Major League Baseball game.
For those of you scoring at home, that’s twice now that John Calipari-helmed teams have seen Final Four runs erased from the books, although in 1996 UMass was only forced to give up its 4-1 NCAA tournament record, and not its entire season, due to Marcus Camby’s indiscretions with an agent. In this case, Memphis’ whole season is being invalidated and Calipari is about to find his coaching resume to be 38 wins lighter.
(This didn’t happen either.)
I suppose it makes sense on some level. If Rose shouldn’t have been eligible to play, then how could any of the team’s wins be valid? But ultimately, this is just a big fat case of “who cares?” Michigan vacated its two runs to the title game with the Fab Five, but what did that accomplish (other than banning the team from the postseason in 2003 for things that happened a decade earlier)? It’s not like they’re giving up anything tangible. The memory of what happened will always be there. Chris Webber isn’t suddenly off the hook for that timeout thing.
“Honestly, I don’t care,” former Memphis guard Antonio Anderson said. “We know what we did. We didn’t do anything wrong, but it is what it is.”
And he’s got a point. The rest of the team didn’t do anything wrong. Even Calipari, it seems, didn’t do anything wrong here. Derrick Rose did allegedly do something wrong, but it’s unlikely that anything is going to happen to him. He, like Camby and Webber, will go on to make tons of money in the NBA while their former teammates are told that their dream college seasons didn’t even happen.
Of course, thus far, only teams that didn’t win the title have had such sanctions levied against them. It will be interesting to see if the NCAA is willing to strip a team of a title and hand it to the runner-up if something like this happens in the future.
(This…yeah, this happened.)
So, remember how (insert contending team here) was crazy not to give up half their team to get Roy Halladay a couple of weeks ago? Well, there are at least two teams that are feeling pretty good about their decision not to mortgage the farm for a short-sighted chance at success.
• English soccer team Burnley, playing its first Premier League home game ever (and first in the top division in 33 years), did the unthinkable last night, shocking Manchester United 1-0 on an awesome volley by veteran Robbie Blake:
• Here’s more details on the odd case of Caster Semenya, who won the women’s 800 meter run by a ridiculous 2 1/2 seconds at the World Championships. She is undergoing what is reportedly an “extremely complex, difficult” set of tests to determine whether or not she is actually a she. A gynecologist is involved, so I imagine that “extremely complex” is an understatement.
And then, oh, Memphis. Currently embroiled in their own NCAA mess, the Tigers should probably be actively endorsing the strength of their compliance department. We’re not sure what the first step of that process is, but it can’t possibly be taking the page down.