T-Time: Who is the best Trojan in the NFL right now?

By on September 16, 2020

first_imgIt’s not the easiest time to be a USC football fan — the team physically can’t win games outside of the Coliseum and I wouldn’t trust offensive coordinator Tee Martin to call my plays in NCAA 14.But I’m not here to rant about the program’s many, many flaws (if you’re still seething from the Utah loss, check out Monday’s edition of “Grinding Gears”). Instead, I’d like to focus on the positives of USC football — like its former players who are no longer hamstrung by an inept coaching staff. Several Trojans are balling out in the big leagues right now, which begs the question: Who is the best former USC player in the NFL right now?I’ll first lay down some criteria. Only current contributions to a team count; prior accomplishments don’t. Packers linebacker Clay Matthews possesses a Hall of Fame-caliber resume, but at age 32, he’s not the fearsome pass rusher he once was. He’s no longer a contender for best NFL Trojan.And in order to weigh different positions evenly, I’ll be judging players based on their raw importance to their teams. For example, Titans defensive lineman Jurrell Casey doesn’t always stuff a stat sheet, but he’s a cornerstone of Tennessee’s defense more so than fellow “Trotan” Adoree Jackson, who has intercepted two passes in 2018. Any inactive or injured players are out of the race.With that said, it’s time to decide who the best Trojan in the NFL is, in order to distract ourselves from an inevitable trip to the Sun Bowl. The contending players will be categorized into three tiers:The Baby TrojansThis section belongs to rookie Trojans who’ve shown flashes of potential, but simply need more time to solidify themselves as NFL stars. This year’s No. 3 overall pick, quarterback Sam Darnold, is the most prominent of the group. Having started all seven games for the Jets, Darnold is still turnover-prone like he was in college (10 interceptions). However, he’s led the Mean Green to three wins — an impressive feat considering the team’s 5-11 finish in each of the past two years.Rounding out the group are pass rusher Uchenna Nwosu (one sack, three QB hits) and running back Ronald Jones, who punched in his first career touchdown Sunday. This trio needs time to see their talents fully realized in the NFL.The Role PlayersUnlike the Baby Trojans, this group features established veterans with major starting roles on their teams.  Wide receiver Nelson Agholor and cornerback Adoree Jackson are pushing into the “Superstar” category, but need a few more years of sustained excellence to qualify. A former first-round pick, Agholor got off to a molasses-slow start, averaging 23.1 receiving yards per game in his first two seasons. But in 2017, he became a key weapon on the Super Bowl champion Eagles, racking up 768 yards and eight touchdowns. It’s just his second year as a pro, but Jackson is already ranked as the No. 16 cornerback in the NFL this season, according to Pro Football Focus. He’s well on his way to become an elite corner at this pace.Defensive tackle Antuan Woods and running back Javorius “Buck” Allen were each part of USC’s class of 2015, and both have carved out solid roles for themselves in the NFL. Woods has started all seven games for the Cowboys at nose-tackle, notching 20 tackles and two for loss, while Allen scored three touchdowns in the Ravens’ first three games. Still waiting on a true breakout year, Allen rushed for over 500 yards in 2015 and 2017.The SuperstarsNow, we reach the cream of the crop — the Trojans who are established stars in the NFL. Receiver Robert Woods is the wild card of the Superstar group, as he’s yet to notch a 1,000-yard season. But he broke out in 2017 with 65.1 yards per game, and continued his explosive play into this season. He currently leads the Rams with 602 receiving yards — good for No. 9 in the league.Joining him are perennial defensive stalwarts Leonard Williams and Jurrell Casey. Williams experienced a down year in 2017, notching just two sacks. He’s reemerged as a fearsome rusher in 2018, however, with three sacks in seven games. Casey is one of the longer tenured Trojans in the NFL, having joined the Titans in 2011. Since then, he’s piled up 42.5 sacks and 74 tackles for loss, en route to three career Pro Bowl appearances.Last but not least, Tyron Smith has been the NFL’s premier left tackle this decade. He’s a five-time Pro-Bowler, two-time All-Pro selection and likely future Hall of Famer. The Cowboys offense has sputtered in 2018, but hardly at any fault of Smith’s.The Ultimate TrojanHere we are. It’s finally time to name the best Trojan currently in the NFL. Steelers wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster is just a second-year pro, but he’s already managed to build a valuable brand for himself on and off the field. Last season, he was becoming a favorite target of Ben Roethlisberger, leading all rookie receivers with 917 yards and seven touchdowns. Now, he is the favorite target of Roethlisberger. He has more receptions and receiving yards than teammate Antonio Brown, who has more receiving yards than anyone in football since 2010.Smith-Schuster is currently No. 6 in the NFL in receiving yards per game, and his total yards would rank higher if not for the Steelers’ bye week. If he’s not dazzling on the field, he’s probably starring off of it, whether in pizza commercials or YouTube escapades. Yet, he manages to back up his vivacious personality every week. Not only is Smith-Schuster more visible than any former Trojan in the NFL, he’s also the most productive of the group.On top of it all, Smith-Schuster is only 21 years old. His crown of best Trojan in the NFL may be staying put for awhile.Trevor Denton is a junior majoring in broadcast and digital journalism. His column, “T-Time,” runs every other Wednesday.last_img read more

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Major injury headache for Tipp footballers

By on September 9, 2020

first_imgThrow in on Saturday is at 2 o clock at Kingspan Breffni Park, and Tipp FM will have full live commentary of the game. Tipp football manager Liam Kearns says the Premier County’s injury list ahead of their qualifier against Cavan on Saturday is the worst he’s seen in 20 years in management.Tipp travel to Cavan for Round 2B of the qualifiers on Saturday without some key players, including Michael Quinlivan, Ciaran McDonald and Shane O’ Connell.However, Liam Kearns says he think they’re doing very well under the circumstances…last_img read more

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LeBron James’ clock is ticking, but Lakers hope the restart is time enough to win it all

By on August 17, 2020

first_imgLAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — The NBA season is in overtime. For LeBron James, and by extension the Los Angeles Lakers, every one of those minutes is precious.There’s a clock running on James’ prime years, which have still unbelievably kept churning on. But in the NBA bubble on the Disney campus, those sands in the hourglass feel as tangible as ever.It’s the sessions like his Monday post-up drill, where he missed turnaround jumpers against assistant coach Phil Handy and screamed he was “(expletive) trash” before collapsing to his back courtside, coated in sweat. It’s gray patches in his beard that have gently spread during the four-month hiatus — but more importantly the fact that James has allowed them to grow without dyeing them or trimming them away.On Tuesday, he drew social media attention for his repose in a lush chair pinched from the lobby of the Coronado Springs convention center, but the more telling piece of the scene: the ice bags wrapped around much of his body and the bath of cold water soaking his feet. Undoubtedly James is still one of the best players in the NBA — in March, some thought he still was the best — but the toll of 17 years in the league is more apparent than ever. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Trail Blazers, Grizzlies advance to NBA play-in game; Suns, Spurs see playoff dreams dashed How athletes protesting the national anthem has evolved over 17 years AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREUCLA alum Kenny Clark signs four-year contract extension with PackersCan King James win the crown again? As the Lakers (49-14) open the restart Thursday night against the Clippers, have they already lost too much time?LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers celebrates his basket and a Brooklyn Nets foul with Danny Green #14 and Kyle Kuzma #0 during the first half at Staples Center on March 10, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)One of the biggest keys to a championship in this singular season is getting James back to the MVP level he was at when the season left off. And nobody feels the gravity of that more than James himself, who was yanked from the rhythm of the season at a critical time.“My body was wondering what was going on because it was right there where my body started getting into sixth and seventh gear into the playoffs,” he said. “And then it was like complete shutdown. So I’m kind of just gearing my body back up.”Depending on how one views the restart, the Lakers are a fascinating case study. When the COVID-19 pandemic stopped the season in its tracks, the Lakers were at their best, their last win coming against the Clippers team that looked to have the edge in two previous meetings. But since time is a premium, better for a veteran Lakers team to come back now, in the thick of what would have been the offseason than to wait another year with James and every other vet another year older.While Anthony Davis has raised the team’s fortunes as one of the foremost frontcourt scorers and defenders, James is the organization’s beating heart. He’s been to the finals eight times and won three — and he’s uncomfortably familiar with how it feels to lose five. Advanced statistics point to James as the team’s pivotal player, the NBA’s assist leader and one of its top MVP candidates. And in difficult moments that rocked the franchise this season — perhaps none as searingly painful as the death of Kobe Bryant — James’ voice carried the loudest. Trail Blazers beat Grizzlies in play-in, earn first-round series with the Lakers Lakers practice early hoping to answer all questions Lakers, Clippers schedules set for first round of NBA playoffs At the very least, he’ll get what he once described in April as “closure.” But the next three months are lining up to be the defining stretch of James’ Lakers tenure, which has been defined by frustrating and sometimes unforeseeable setbacks. And what’s stranger for James is that at no point during this stretch will he hear the legions of passionate in-arena fans who have greeted the Lakers everywhere they go for the last two years.“Everything is different and you have to be able to adjust to it,” he said. “I don’t know as far as if it was like a home game at Staples Center. It won’t have that feeling. Because our fans just give us so much energy, our fans give us so much support and we want to try to give that back to them on the floor.”With a near insurmountable lead in the Western Conference standings (and with home-court advantage cheapened by fanless arenas), the Lakers will have plenty of time to troubleshoot rusty jumpers, defensive miscommunications and less-than-prime conditioning.The Lakers are unlikely to push the minutes of their starters immediately into high gear, which is a luxury that teams scrambling against elimination don’t have. But their early schedule, which includes games against the Clippers, Raptors, Jazz and Thunder, will very quickly provide reference points to just how far they have to go from where they left off.Frank Vogel already has an idea that four months has left some of their tight fundamentals to wither on the vine.“Everything from transition defense, to our box-out habits, to our offensive spacing, our screening techniques — all those types of things factor into winning basketball,” he said. “We’re doing them at a decent level. I’m not displeased with where we’re at, but certainly need to continue to tighten the screws.”Outside of James’ contributions, the Lakers will look to Davis, 27, who has been statistically the franchise player they hoped for in an offseason trade, but has at times struggled to carry lineups by himself without James on the floor to command.On a team that bucks the small ball conventions of the NBA, a weak backcourt is also a concern. Without a tenacious defender in Avery Bradley and a backup floor general in Rajon Rondo (who could return in another month), they’ll have to rely on players such as Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Alex Caruso whose playoff mettle is mostly untested, or Dion Waiters and J.R. Smith, who are being asked to blend quickly.With dangerous point guards like Damian Lillard, Ja Morant and, yes, Lonzo Ball potentially lining up against that backcourt in the first round, guard play is a point of vulnerability that the Lakers will have to withstand.That might have been what Danny Green meant when he said, of all the factors, James is the one he’s least concerned about.“You can see him finding his rhythm each day in practice,” Green said. “I fully expect him to get back to where he was fairly soon, playing a couple games. He’ll be just fine. Other guys are moreso a concern than him.”To win a championship, the Lakers will have to weather challenges that most recent champions have never had to worry about: personnel staffs that have been dramatically cut; adapted playing spaces where they can’t even shower; the threat that the long layoff could contribute to a spate of soft tissue injuries; isolation from their family and friends.Every team in the bubble is going through it, but lasting until the end is likely to be a mental strain perhaps even more than a physical one.That physical question — how much time does LeBron James have — is always the most important one for the Lakers. And they hope the eight games between now and the start of the playoffs will be a runway to getting to the real challenge and restoring confidence that their best player is still at the height of his powers.“These eight regular season games that we have here will also help on getting my body where I need it to get into getting into the playoffs,” James said. “I’ll be very smart listening to my body.”Everyone else will be listening, too.Related Articleslast_img read more

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Asmir Begović might go to play for Arsenal

By on August 16, 2020

first_imgStoke City goalkeeper Asmir Begović is the latest stopper to be linked with Arsenal. The search for competition for Wojciech Szczesny is heating up this summer as someone will surely be brought in.Stoke City bought promising keeper Jack Butland in January, so it is very likely that Begović is off this summer. The 25 year old is the starting goalkeeper for the Bosnia and Herzegovina national team.Last week Begović announced that he’s staying at Stoke City, but the situation might change after all.(arsenal.sportsblog)last_img read more

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By on August 2, 2020

first_imgARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 8, 2016)–With 2014 Horse of the Year California Chrome headlining a nine-race program, there is also a Pick Six carryover of $56,040 into Saturday at Santa Anita. The total Pick Six pool, which will begin with Saturday’s fourth race, should approach $500,000 according to track officials.A winner of four Grade I stakes in 2014, including the Santa Anita and Kentucky Derbies, California Chrome is the 4-5 morning line favorite among a field of eight older horses in tomorrow’s Grade II, $200,000 San Pasqual Stakes, which will be contested at 1 1/16 miles.Carded as Saturday’s eighth race, the San Pasqual will be complemented by the Grade III, one mile Sham Stakes, which attracted a field of nine sophomores and will be run as the sixth race.First post time on Saturday is at 12:30 p.m. Admission gates open at 10:30 a.m.For updated scratches, changes and morning line information, please visit santaanita.com. SATURDAY’S TOTAL PICK SIX POOL SHOULD APPROACH $500,000last_img read more

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Raiders sign RB Crowell and LB Marshall

By on December 20, 2019

first_imgALAMEDA — The Raiders got some company for Jalen Richard in the running back room Thursday by bringing aboard running back Isaiah Crowell, and also added depth at linebacker with the signing of Brandon Marshall.Crowell, 26, is a durable five-year veteran who has 3,083 yards rushing in four seasons with the Cleveland Browns and last season with the New York Jets. He could make up to $2.5 million on a one-year deal.Ma … CLICK HERE if you are having a problem viewing the photos on a mobile devicelast_img read more

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Neanderthal Concept Has Imploded

By on December 19, 2019

first_imgIf Neanderthals interbred with modern humans as early as new findings suggest, the distinction becomes meaningless.“Our first sex with Neanderthals happened 100,000 years ago,” New Scientist shouts. This is a shocking story of a tryst that is steamier than any dime novel. It was announced in Nature by Dr. Sergi Castellano and a research team from Max Planck Institute. Colin Barras reports,It was a two-way street. Many people carry ancient Neanderthal DNA in their genome as a result of cross-species liaisons around 50,000 years ago. Now it seems that some Neanderthals carried our DNA, too.The BBC News agrees with the 100,000-year date for the secret dating encounter, but things gets worse. Where did the liaison take place? According to Live Science, if you guessed the Fertile Crescent, you’re getting warmer.Castellano and his colleagues speculated that the episode of interbreeding they detected may have occurred in the Levant, the eastern Mediterranean region that includes Israel and Syria. Previous research suggested that modern humans and Neanderthals were present in the Levant as early as 120,000 years ago. Another potential location for this interbreeding was Southern Arabia and the area around the Persian Gulf, they added.“The exact place where the gene flow occurred is not settled, but the Near East fits the fossil evidence we currently have,” Castellano told Live Science.This news is worse than the prior week’s announcements that Neanderthal DNA is responsible for some of our modern maladies like depression, allergies and obesity (Science Magazine, PhysOrg). Not that all Neanderthal genes are bad; some seem to increase the immune system, the claim went. But if “interspecies gene flow” between the two groups dates back 120,000 years or more, such distinctions are academic. Species are defined by the ability to interbreed and produce fertile offspring.And speaking of fertile, isn’t the Fertile Crescent where the Tower of Babel was located? Is that mere coincidence?We mustn’t be racists about this. That wouldn’t be politically correct. Live Science announced that race is a social construct; what else could they say? All humans can intermarry and have children, including Neanderthals. We are their offspring. Get used to it. No more talk about stocky builds and brow ridges. We are Neanderthals, and they are us.It’s time to shame the textbook writers and museums about this. Complain to the curators about their racist depictions of your relatives. Demand removal of the “Neanderthal” n-word as vehemently as you would any other case of racial harassment. Tell them you want the human families depicted accurately in the early man exhibits, with proud upright postures, wise faces and classy outfits. If they won’t do it, demand that the curator put on buckskins and get in the exhibit with his relatives.It’s over, folks. The Neanderthal myth is dead, and with it the mythical timeline of early man evolving upward toward us. The evolutionists have been wrong for over 150 years! Back to the words of the God-fearing, Christ-honoring Joachim Neander, whose name was inadvertently attached to our deceased brethren because he owned the valley where the first bones were found. This one-and-only original Neanderthal man was no stoop-shouldered, bow-legged brute lugging mammoth meat to the cave cookout. He was a man of letters and wisdom, and he was a creationist. His words we can now sing over the debunked myth with added gusto: “Praise to the Lord, the Almighty, the King of Creation.”Praise to the Lord, who, when darkness of sin is abounding,who, when the godless do triumph, all virtue confounding,sheddeth his light,chaseth the horrors of night,saints with his mercy surrounding.(Visited 103 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

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Former teacher empowers others through creativity

By on December 18, 2019

first_imgMarjolein Gamble is a former pre-primary and primary school teacher who was inspired by a fondness for creativity to create sustainable products and empower local workers.Marjolein Gamble has made a living from her pencil drawn greeting cards, as above, and shweshwe fashion designs. Most of her products are made from recyclable materials. (Image: Carte-Blanche.com)Marjolein Gamble started with blank cards on which she drew with colour pencils and printed on recycled local paper. This is where the name ‘Carte-Blanche’ came from. According to the Oxford dictionary, this French term means “a blank piece of paper to be filled in as the possessor pleases”.Today Gamble sells a variety of products such as: artistic blank greeting cards; notebooks made from recycled card and paper; shweshwe shoulder bags; reversible peak hats, shirts and shorts; shweshwe and canvas aprons; printed shoulder bags; and decorative glow in the dark shapes.Sustainability is the key focus for Carte-Blanche and Gamble sources locally manufactured and environmentally friendly materials.Carte-Blanche is in its infancy but already creates a lot of regular work and employs a few locals on a part-time and contract basis.Carte-Blanche invites you to buy good quality products and clothes which are affordable, artistic and which support our local artisans and resources.Their website is www.carteblanchecards.com.last_img read more

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Upcoming Webinar: Mental Health Care in TRICARE

By on December 12, 2019

first_imgPresenter:Captain Edward SimmerChief Clinical OfficerTRICARE Health PlanDefense Health AgencyContinuing Education Credit Available!The MFLN Military Caregiving concentration will apply for 1.0 continuing education (CE) credit from UT School of Social Work for credentialed and licensed professionals. Additionally, Certificates of completion will be available for participants interested in receiving training hours.Interested in Joining the Webinar?To join this event, simply click on Mental Health Care in TRICARE: Recent Enhancements to a Great Benefit. The webinar is hosted by the Department of Defense APAN system, but is open to the public.If you cannot connect to the APAN site, an alternative viewing of this presentation will be running on YouTube Live. Mobile options for YouTube Live are available on all Apple and Android devices.This MFLN-Military Caregiving concentration blog post was published on June 8, 2018. Please join MFLN Military Caregiving Wednesday, June 13 at 11:00 a.m. Eastern, for our free webinar entitled ‘Mental Health Care in TRICARE: Recent Enhancements to a Great Benefit.’This webinar will review TRICARE mental health care benefits, including what is covered, requirements for referrals, recent improvements, substance abuse treatment, telemental health, and the Autism Care Demonstration.After participating in this webinar, attendees will be able to:Explain how to access mental health care using the TRICARE benefit.Describe recent enhancements to the TRICARE mental health benefit.Explain when telemental health is appropriate, and how it is covered under TRICARE.Describe the autism care demonstration and coming changes to the program.last_img read more

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Ex-NBA player sentenced to prison for selling stolen guns

By on November 30, 2019

first_imgFrontrow holds fun run to raise funds for young cancer patients  Evidence presented at trial showed the 44-year-old Driggers bought 30 of 111 Rugers stolen by gang members in 2015 from a rail car parked in a rail yard and quickly resold 29 of them. Only 19 guns have been recovered.In asking for the maximum sentence of 10 years, prosecutors said Driggers’ actions have contributed to the “very dark place” Chicago finds itself in when it comes to gun violence.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutDriggers on Thursday again denied ever selling guns.Drafted by Celtics in 1996, Driggers appeared in 15 games that season. E.T. returns to earth, reunites with grown-up Elliott in new ad  Nonong Araneta re-elected as PFF president View comments Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf PLAY LIST 01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC BSP sees higher prices in November, but expects stronger peso, low rice costs to put up fight CHICAGO — An eight-year prison sentence has been handed to a former Boston Celtics player found guilty of receiving guns stolen off a freight train in Chicago.Nate Driggers was found guilty in April of being a convicted felon in possession of stolen guns.ADVERTISEMENT TOTAL Excellium revs up for the third leg of the Toyota Vios Cup Fire hits houses in Mandaluyong City Read Next MOST READ WATCH: Streetboys show off slick dance moves in Vhong Navarro’s wedding LOOK: Loisa Andalio, Ronnie Alonte unwind in Amanpulo for 3rd anniversary Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. LATEST STORIESlast_img read more

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