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Ellsworth Teams Remain Undefeated

first_img admin House fire in Winter Harbor – October 27, 2014 Bio This is placeholder textThis is placeholder text Hancock County Court News Nov. 3 thorugh Dec. 11 – January 22, 2015 Latest Posts ELLSWORTH — On Monday the girls prevailed over Hermon 5-0, getting wins by Grant, Harding, Winkleman and the doubles duos of Wadman and Maloney and White and Rachel Ball.In the boys’ 4-1 victory against the Hawks, Spencer Small and Reese at singles and Toothaker and Tyler Small and Harding and Albee at doubles were winners, with Hermon’s Jacob Reynolds besting Nathan Smith at third singles. For more sports stories, pick up a copy of The Ellsworth American. Latest posts by admin (see all) State budget vs. job creation – January 22, 2015last_img read more

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Study finds less drinking on campus

first_imgParties on campus tend to involve less drinking than those held off campus, according to the Dept. of Public Safety and “Drinking at College Parties: Examining the Influence of Student Host-Status and Party-Location,” a recent study from Ohio State University.Partying · Dept. of Public Safety said it rarely receives complaints about on-campus parties because of the supervision of residential advisors and coordinators in on-campus housing, according to DPS Capt. David Carlisle. – Jaspreet Singh | Daily TrojanThe two sources found that hosts of parties on campus consume an average of 4.5 drinks while hosts of off-campus parties average 7.5 drinks.The study also found that off-campus party hosts tend to engage in alcohol-related behavior, such as verbal arguments, physical assault, public urination and spontaneous rioting. Researchers interviewed 3,796 students over the course of two academic years.DPS Capt. David Carlisle said residential advisers keep things under control at on-campus residences and other drinking on campus is in a controlled environment, like Traditions Bar & Grill, where security is provided by DPS.USC owns or manages several student housing properties located off-campus and a majority of the university’s students are 21 years old or older.“We seldom have party complaints on campus. On-campus residential halls have supervision in the form of residential advisors and residential coordinators who usually handle any disruption,” Carlisle said. “Alcohol possession by minors in the residential halls is prohibited and, for those over 21, kegs or other large amounts of alcohol are also discouraged, though rarely a problem.”Carlisle said DPS observations seem to support the study’s results.“Overindulgence in alcohol is often encountered on party calls,” Carlisle said.Justin Waring-Crane, a sophomore majoring in occupational therapy, said he thinks students are more likely to drink more off campus.“Because [students] are off campus, they don’t really feel like there would be as serious consequences because [students partying off campus] don’t have RAs leaning over their shoulders,” Waring-Crane said.Some students, however, said the hosts drink less than the attendees for parties both on-campus and off-campus.“The hosts feel responsible for the safety of the party and choose to be more responsible,” said Ben Badower, a freshman majoring in business administration living on campus.Silken Weinberg, a freshman majoring in communications said the threat of residential advisers appears to be more of a concern when choosing how much one drinks and where to attend parties.“If you’re off campus … it just doesn’t feel like it’s as much of an issue or a reason for you to get in trouble as [it is] in the dorms,” Weinberg said.last_img read more

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Spring Showcase displays promising new talent

first_imgBut Jackson had other plans. He sniffed out the play design immediately, baiting Sears into making the throw and within an instant doing the unthinkable; he stuck out his left arm, and with a single hand, plucked the ball out of the air, proceeding to run it back for a 39-yard pick-six. Though most of the running backs’ work Saturday involved catching swing passes and taking routine carries, the group provided what was easily the day’s biggest offensive highlight, courtesy of Markese Stepp. The 230-pound rising sophomore is known for being a punishing battering ram with the rock in his hands, but on an early carry to the right, he made sure everyone in attendance knew that he had speed to burn as well. That play encapsulated all the elements of Jackson’s game that could make him so special — the freak athleticism, the awareness and the natural feel for the game that allowed him to diagnose the play. This talent has been on display all throughout the spring in flashes, but none brighter than Saturday’s performance. It would be no surprise to see him find his way onto the field early and often in the season. The moment of the day came when Jackson made a near supernatural play rushing Sears off the left edge. The play was a screen pass into the flat, designed to draw him in toward the quarterback only to have the ball popped to the running back over his head. Defense All of the quarterbacks performed nicely on the day, with redshirt sophomore Jack Sears having the best showing of the group, making some nice connections down the field and doing well under pressure. The group only threw one interception on the day. Jackson found his way into the backfield all day, putting pressure on the quarterbacks and notching an impressive sack on a speed rush against the right tackle. The Trojans took to the turf Saturday at Cromwell Field for the annual Spring Showcase, giving the hundreds of fans in attendance and thousands more watching on TV a taste of what they can expect to see this upcoming football season. The receiver group had a nice all-around outing, from veterans to newcomers alike. Senior Michael Pittman, redshirt junior Tyler Vaughns and sophomore Amon-Ra St. Brown were their usual selves, while rising sophomore Devon Williams bounced back from a rough start to the day with some nice grabs later on. Sophomore Amon-Ra St. Brown catches the ball at the Spring Showcase at Cromwell Field. (Ling Luo/Daily Trojan) As fun as the offense may have been at times, the undisputed star of the day was on the other side of the ball. Early-enrollee edge rusher Drake Jackson had a monstrous outing. At only 17, Jackson looks the part of a grown defensive end, pairing tremendous athleticism with his hulking frame. Head coach Clay Helton noted the same, comparing him to Trojan legend Leonard Williams. The star of the group had to be early-enrollee freshman John Jackson III, who’s been impressive all spring and did more of the same on the field Saturday. Jackson’s sturdy frame and refined route running make him a dangerous target, and he made a number of excellent catches throughout the day — his best being a toe-dragging sideline catch 20 yards downfield on a corner route. He’ll make a strong case to earn some playing time as the offseason continues. In the past few years, it has become custom for USC not to run a true spring game anymore. Instead, it runs extended scrimmage sessions with alternating situations. While it’s a rather fruitless exercise to make projections for the season based on what happens on a Saturday in April, the showcase certainly provided moments of excitement and reasons to be optimistic in the fall. All eyes were on offensive coordinator Graham Harrell’s air-raid offense, and it didn’t disappoint. The effects of simplifying the offense were clear, with the quarterbacks making quick and efficient decisions and the offensive line moving with certainty. “He reminds me a lot of Leonard … just a grown man as an 18-year-old,” Helton said. Stepp jetted through the defense, beating every defender on the field and breaking an ankle tackle on the way to a 57-yard touchdown. Stepp has been a force all spring long. It wouldn’t be a massive surprise to see him as the Trojans’ lead back come fall. Offenselast_img read more

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Fonbet builds betting experience through ‘Alice’ voice assistant

first_img StumbleUpon Alexey Khobot on the evolution of odds calculations August 13, 2020 Related Articles Share Share More than 5,000 users every month are now asking ‘Alice’ about current promotions on Fonbet, whose virtual voice assistant has a declared accuracy of about 90%.Alice, the Yandex-developed equivalent of Apple’s Siri, was first launched in 2017 but the Fonbet “skill” was only added in late 2019.It has the answers to thousands of common template questions that help “her” to understand and explain topics specific to the sports betting player journey on Fonbet.This means that the operator’s players who activate the AI-driven assistant by saying ‘Alice, ask Fonbet’ can get answers to questions about current promotions, as well as help placing a bet, predictions for an upcoming match and even the meaning of a ‘zero margin’ market.Fonbet’s Alexey Khobot confirmed that the assistant makes its match predictions based on the sportsbook’s current odds. He explained that you can even bet against Alice, who will respond to phrases like “I don’t agree” by sending you a link to a bet which opposes her prediction.Fonbet’s chief expert admitted that it’s currently not possible to place bets directly via Alice, but if you ask her to place a bet you will be sent a link to the relevant event on the Fonbet sportsbook. If you are not yet registered, then Alice will share a registration link with you.“We were looking for a tool to improve a customer’s experience and integrate Fonbet in their daily life,” Khobot added. “Millions of people use Alice to find the fastest route, play music, order pizza or find any information on the internet. By adding the skill Fonbet to the voice assistant, our clients can get information about odds and matches using their regular service.”Khobot concluded: “Another reason why we created this skill within the voice assistant was to attract new clients, especially those who were not familiar with betting before.“In Russia, according to the law, we have a long registration procedure and we got an insight from our potential clients that betting seems complicated for them. The Fonbet skill in voice assistant can explain to them how to make a bet and provide better understanding of the different types of bets.” Ilya Machavariani, Dentons – CIS regional dynamics will come to play prior to gambling take-off July 31, 2020 Submit Duma approves overhaul of Russian sports betting laws  July 23, 2020last_img read more

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Lakers respond to Steve Nash Facebook post on golf video, health issues

first_imgWhile the reaction from fans has been divided, Nash said he feels there is a difference between swinging a golf club and other activities that are not “debilitating” as opposed to playing basketball, which now “puts me out for a couple of weeks.“Once you’re asked to accelerate and decelerate with (opponents) Steph Curry and Kyrie Irving, it is a completely different demand,” he wrote.Lakers coach Byron Scott said he saw the Facebook post right after practice and gave his support to Nash, calling it a sincere message and that people overreacted because of the championship expectations Nash brought when he was signed two years ago.But Scott was more poignant when he admitted that the note is a visible sign that Nash may be facing the reality that his NBA career may be over.“It’s given me insight on where he’s leaning towards,” Scott said, “He probably feels he did everything in his power in the last two years to get in unbelievable condition and put himself in a position where he felt he could compete again. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error “But as we went on through training camp, the more he played, the worse it got.”Scott, who has not spoken directly to Nash yet, also reflected on his own playing career and how after 14 years, his body did not respond the same way as it did when he was younger. With Nash having played 18 seasons, the challenges are far greater.“It’s very hard for any athlete to say I can’t do it anymore,” Scott said. “You’re the last one to admit it, but I think he’s gotten to the point where he’s probably starting to admit that he can’t play this game at a high level anymore.”Kelly injury updateRyan Kelly practiced briefly with the Lakers after having missed the previous two practices. His status for tonight’s game against Charlotte remains questionable, although Scott said it was “doubtful.”“He did a little bit more today, but we’ll see how he feels tomorrow,” Scott said. “I want to see if he can go a full day of practice, which will be Monday, and then we’ll go from there.”Lighter load for KobeKobe Bryant participated in his first practice Saturday since his 44-minute outing against Phoenix on Tuesday. Scott said that with a four-game schedule coming up this week as opposed to one last week, Bryant will return to a lighter load on the court.center_img Steve Nash was not at Lakers practice Saturday, but his presence was felt as the team reacted to his Facebook post from a day earlier regarding a video of him hitting golf balls at a driving range.In his first public comments since being declared out for the season, Nash addressed the video, which has since been removed, while giving an update on his health. Among other things, Nash said that one of three bulging discs in his back is torn and he has trouble even sitting in a car due to the various nerve issues.“The past two years I’ve worked like a dog to not only overcome these setbacks, but to find the form that could lift up and inspire the fans in L.A. as my last chapter,” Nash wrote, “Obviously it’s been a disaster on both fronts, but I’ve never worked harder, sacrificed more or faced such a difficult challenge mentally and emotionally.”last_img read more

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Lakers: We were a “bit wrong” about Kristaps Porzingis

first_img“Pau? No. That won’t be the first time me and Phil disagreed,” Bryant joked, referring to initially clashing with Jackson both with his role and his system.After further reviewRussell took a few steps forward in Friday’s win against Brooklyn with 16 points on 6-of-9 shooting, prompting Scott to say he “played pretty well.” But Russell took a few steps back after logging zero assists.“Did it get my attention? Yeah,” Scott said. “He wants to take care of the ball. But with the way he can pass the ball, I was curious with the stat sheet and saw zero for him.”Scott had threatened Russell would play less if his mistakes persisted. But he downplayed whether that made Russell tentative, arguing he warned all of the Lakers’ young players. “I don’t think he was that much more careful with it. But I thought he was more aware,” Scott said of Russell’s playmaking. “You’re either going to have guys come out there and take it as a challenge. Or you’ll have guys that fold.”Lending perspectiveBryant said he “absolutely” talks with Jackson frequently, but not about his rebuilding efforts with the Knicks.“He’s in the moment like he always is,” Bryant said of Jackson. “People here are going to have to be patient. They don’t have a choice.” So what did the Lakers miss?“The one thing we can’t test is your heart. We can’t test guys in what they have inside of them. Obviously this kid has a hunger to be really good,” Scott said. “The kid is going to be really special one day.”So special that both Scott and Kobe Bryant compared Porzingis to Dallas forward Dirk Nowitzki, who has perfected a step-back fallaway and mid-range game to currently stand for seventh place in the NBA’s all-time scoring list with 28,203 points.“He looks pretty damn good,” Bryant said of Porzingis. “He’s skillful, can do a lot of things and seems very competitive. He has a good competitive spirit about him.”Because of Porzingis’ versatility and international experience, former Lakers coach and current Knicks president Phil Jackson compared his star draft pick to Chicago Bulls forward Pau Gasol, who helped the Lakers to two NBA championships under Jackson’s triangle offense. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorcenter_img NEW YORK >> The 7-foot-3, 240-pound frame of Kristaps Porzingis left the Lakers intrigued. So did his versatility with both his athleticism and long-distance shooting.But after viewing him in individual pre-draft workouts both in Las Vegas and Los Angeles, the Lakers still passed up on Porzingis and used their No. 2 pick on point guard D’Angelo Russell.Instead, the New York Knicks (2-4) selected the Latvian native, who enters Sunday’s game against the Lakers (1-4) at Madison Square Garden averaging 12.3 points on 40.9 percent shooting and 8.3 rebounds.“He really didn’t show any fear. We just thought it would take him some time,” Lakers coach Byron Scott said of Porzingis. “Obviously we’re a little wrong about that. He’s playing pretty well right now.”last_img read more

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Are baseball players happy? A personal memory of Marvin Miller

first_imgMajor League Baseball is undergoing a revolution. As more and more teams embrace sabermetrics as a way of life, club owners are casting a jaundiced eye at longterm contracts for players in their thirties. This, in turn, has led to a ripple effect on salaries across the board. One wonders what Marvin Miller would think of it all.Miller is a towering figure in sports history. In 1966, when he was elected executive director of the Major League Baseball Players Association, players were bound to their club by a “reserve clause” that precluded free negotiation. Pensions were negligible. Most labor issues were resolved by club owners in a dictatorial manner. Are baseball players happy (or were they happy in 1982)? The responses we got seemed to indicate that players have more highs and lows than the average person; a greater sense of opportunity, but also a sense of how fragile that opportunity is.I also know that some of the comments we received from players were particularly well-thought-out and seemed to come from special people. I’m sorry that we never had an opportunity to get to know them.Thomas Hauser can be reached by email at thomashauserwriter@gmail.com. The above article appears in “Thomas Hauser on Sports,” published by the University of Arkansas Press. (Courtesy of Thomas Hauser) https://images.daznservices.com/di/library/sporting_news/74/58/mlbplayersurvey2-hauser-ftr-031119jpg_1e4beemh3dhx11jgnqs1ynl0x8.jpg?t=1848811489&w=500&quality=80 A psychological survey of MLB players in 1982 was cut short before meaningful conclusions could be drawn. (Thomas Hauser)MORE: Babe Ruth’s daughter dies at 102One of the questions we asked was, “Do you ever get depressed about your professional career? If so, what causes it?”Most of the players acknowledged having been depressed at one time or another. Injury was a common cause of depression. Other causes were a lack of playing time, poor performance on the field, and a lack of job security. “I’m trying never-endingly to fill the void whenever I get depressed,” one player wrote. None of the respondents said that they got depressed because their team was losing.Quite a few of the players had considered quitting baseball at one time or another, usually when they were mired in the minor leagues or were sent back down to the minors after a stint in the big leagues. One player (who ultimately had an eleven-year major league career) admitted that he’d been very close to quitting. “Never played much, was shown up by manager,” he wrote. “I didn’t [quit] because it was just one man’s judgment.”The thing that players seemed to dislike most about major league ball was the travel. They found it tiring and anxiety-provoking. “I don’t fear flying,” one player told us. “But everyone in the back of their mind thinks about crashing.”Questions about fans elicited a range of responses. One question we asked was, “Do you feel that the fans understand and fully appreciate your skills?”“The true fans understand,” one player responded. But other players answered ”no” followed by comments such as, “They don’t realize how complicated and demanding the job is. The game looks too easy from the stands . . . They don’t know what it takes to be a player. They think it’s easy because they’ve seen it been made to look easy by great players.”Another question (“Do you feel that the fans understand and fully appreciate your problems?”) evoked a passionate response. At one end of the spectrum were players who answered, “The fans shouldn’t have to understand my problems . . . I don’t expect them to. I would rather the fans not know my personal problems.”But most players answered “no” followed by thoughts like, “No way . . . All the fans see is the good times . . . They only see the glamour of playing in the big leagues . . . They don’t know the everyday pressure of playing . . . They don’t realize the pressures involved . . . Very few fans have any idea what a ballplayer goes through . . . Fans don’t realize the feeling you have when you go 0-4 that day . . . Most fans don’t comprehend what being a professional athlete is all about. They view it with rose colored glasses and envy . . . They make us out to be more than we are. After all, we are just people with the ability to play baseball . . . They think life in the big leagues is all fun and games. They don’t realize the hardships and that this is more than a game. It’s my job . . . Most fans don’t feel the players are human. We’re supposed to be at our peak all the time . . . Most people don’t realize how hard a 162-game season is. Travel, sickness, family problems. There is not a player in either league that feels 100% for every game. Some days, you only have 80% in you but you give that full 80%, not 70% . . . Fans seem to think this life is one of only glitter and gold. How could anyone making a lot of money have any problems? We’re normal people. We have normal problems . . . There’s no way a fan who attends a baseball game can understand what’s going on in my life.” (Courtesy of Thomas Hauser) https://images.daznservices.com/di/library/sporting_news/f0/60/mlbplayersurvey-hauser-ftr-031119jpg_1wrqi5w2ywsle1dikrmt51xn6x.jpg?t=1829232785&w=500&quality=80 MORE: A history of MLB work stoppagesIn 1968, Miller negotiated the first collective bargaining agreement in the history of professional sports. The agreement raised baseball’s annual minimum salary from $6,000 to $10,000. More significantly, it began the process of laying a foundation for an effective labor movement. The tide turned irrevocably in 1975, when an arbitrator (and later, the federal courts) upheld a challenge to baseball’s reserve clause. Free agency for players with six years’ service in the major leagues was incorporated into the next collective bargaining agreement. In 1970, the average salary for a major league baseball player was $29,303. In 2018, it was $4,095,686.Miller’s creation became the standard that other sports unions aspire to. He formally stepped down as executive director of the MLBPA in late 1982. One of his last acts of leadership was mean-spirited and destructive. I know, because I was on the receiving end of it. And I think it constituted a disservice to the players he served so effectively for most of his reign.Let me explain.As a child, I was a passionate baseball fan. I went to doubleheaders regularly at Yankee Stadium and knew the names of virtually every player in the major leagues.Fast-forward to 1982. I was 36 years old. Five year earlier, I’d left my job as a litigator with a prominent Wall Street law firm to pursue a career as a writer. I was no longer a passionate baseball fan but still followed the sport with interest.Baseball in 1982 was in a state of transition. A 1981 strike had led to the cancellation of 706 games (38 percent percent of the season) and engendered considerable public resentment toward the players. Times are different now. The public is used to astronomical salaries for athletes. But in 1982, $241,497 (the average player salary) struck many as an exorbitant amount of money for “playing a game”.I had a friend (a professor of psychiatry named Bill Hoffmann) who dabbled in sports psychology. Bill and I were of the view that a baseball player’s life was harder than it seemed. But could we quantify that notion?In September 1982, Dr. Hoffmann and I proposed an article to Sports Illustrated. The first paragraph of our proposal read, “Countless articles have been written about what makes professional athletes win, but little has been said about what makes them happy. The popular perception is that ballplayers have a great life – good pay, lots of adulation; they don’t even ‘work’ for a living. But scratch the veneer of a professional athlete and two demons surface: fear of failure and the fear of growing old.”We then proposed putting together a psychological testing questionnaire and sending it to every member of the Major League Baseball Players Association as the foundation of our research, analyzing the results, conducting follow-up interviews with players, and writing about our findings.Sports Illustrated found the idea intriguing and asked us to prepare a draft questionnaire. If it was satisfactory, the magazine would pay the cost of copying and postage. Once the data was in, SI would decide whether or not it wanted to commission the article. If it didn’t, Dr. Hoffmann and I would be free to sell our work elsewhere.At that point, I telephoned the Major League Baseball Players Association and was referred to Peter Rose (associate general counsel for the organization). I asked him if the MLBPA would cooperate by making mailing labels available. Rose said he liked the idea but that an updated list of players’ addresses would not be compiled until sometime in November. He also told me that the MLBPA had a policy against releasing the home addresses of players but that, if I brought the stuffed envelopes to MLBPA headquarters, mailing labels would be affixed to them and they could be mailed from there.MORE: Opening Day schedule for all 30 MLB teamsThereafter, Dr. Hoffmann and I prepared a seven-page questionnaire with 61 questions. Some of the inquiries asked for basic biographical data. Others delved more deeply into likes and dislikes, hopes and fears, how the individual player’s happiness was affected by on-field performance, personal and professional relationships, salary, the media, fans, off-season activities, education, religion, and numerous other variables. Sports Illustrated approved the questionnaire with minor changes, and I telephoned Rose to ask how much advance notice would be needed prior to mailing. He said that 48 hours would be adequate.On the first Friday in December, I telephoned the MLBPA to advise Rose that the mailing would be ready in three days and was told by a secretary that he was at the winter meetings in Hawaii and would not be in the office until Monday, December 13. After several more calls, the same secretary told me that I could pick up the labels and mail the letters myself if I promised that I would make no copies of the labels and show the addresses to no one. I agreed and kept that promise. The questionnaire was sent to 894 players (814 in the United States and 80 in foreign countries).Then we waited. And the questionnaires began flowing back. The respondents ranged from career utility players to future Hall of Famers. We’d hoped for a cross-section of the baseball community, and we got it. Some of the names were familiar to me. Others meant nothing until I began reading their answers and then they became flesh and blood.The overwhelming majority of players said that their happiest moment in baseball was their first major league game. Others mentioned their first major league hit or first major league home run. Playing in the World Series and winning the World Series were also cited by those who’d had that experience. Pitchers frequently referenced their first major league win, although one hurler noted a bases-loaded double against Nolan Ryan as his happiest moment and another wrote, “striking out Reggie Jackson.”On the opposite side of the coin, when players were asked about their most unhappy moment in baseball, the most common answer was “being sent back down to the minors.” Others cited the first time they were traded, although most saw trades as part of the game. The consensus was that it was a lot better to be traded to a first place team than to a lesser club. Other unhappy moments derived from a poor individual performance such as “giving up five home runs in a game” or “striking out four times in one game.” Another player’s most unhappy moment was “when we were in the World Series and I didn’t get into a game.”When asked to identify their greatest professional fear, players overwhelmingly cited the fear of a career-ending injury. “Pitchers never know when their arm is going to blow out,” one respondent wrote. “It’s just a matter of time.”Were players worried in general about their career coming to an end?“The worries began on day one,” one player answered. “It’s a fact of life.”Quite a few voiced regret that they weren’t better educated so that their career options would be more varied when their playing days were over. “It’s a fantasy world, and you have to prepare for when you are out of it,” one player wrote.Fear of failure in single-game situations wasn’t as pronounced as we’d thought it would be. Professionals understand that losing is part of the game. We also hadn’t expected the response of a pitcher who told us that his greatest fear was “someone shooting me when I’m on the mound.” Questions and answers from the 1982 survey. (Thomas Hauser)Suspicion of the media was a repeating theme. Comments included, “Most media people just want to sell papers or fill air time and don’t care about hurting someone . . . They understand our problems, but I don’t think they sympathize with us because of the money . . . Most writers are frustrated jocks, who second guess you and cannot appreciate the dedication or hardships that playing professional athletics involves . . . Most don’t care unless you are a star . . . The media is disappointingly ignorant about sports and they have no desire to improve.”MORE: Five bold predictions for the 2019 seasonA majority of players voiced a preference for radio or television over print interviews because they couldn’t be misquoted. A sampling of responses on that issue included, “On TV or radio, you say what you say, not what some reporter thinks you should say . . . On television or radio, what I say can’t be turned around. It’s easy to ‘misquote’ in print . . . On radio or television, what comes out of my mouth is what I want people to hear. Print never comes out the same . . . On radio or TV, if I am misrepresented, it’s nobody’s fault but my own.”However, one player preferred print interviews, saying, “It gives you time to think.” And another answered, “Radio and television can’t really get the whole story right in five minutes. But print is only better when the story is printed as the player said it, not the way the writer heard it.”The feeling across the board was that Spanish-speaking players had an extra set of problems because of language barriers. Remember; in 1982, there were far fewer Hispanics in the major leagues than there are today.Another question we asked was, “Are your reasons for continuing to play ball different now from when you started?” Representative answers included, “When I played in little league and high school, we had a lot of fun. In the pros, it’s serious business . . . At first, I played to satisfy my dream and to make it to the big leagues. Now I play to support my family and set up my future financially . . . I started for fun. Now it’s a business . . . When I started in the game, it was for fun. The older I got, the fun went away and the business took over . . . The fun is slowly being taken out of it. It’s a job now.”Clearly, money was a major incentive. But virtually without exception, the respondents said that they’d rather play regularly and make $200,000 than sit on the bench for $300,000. Although one player noted, “If I’m playing regularly, I’ll get to $300,000.” And another observed, “You can’t renegotiate your contract while you’re sitting on the bench.”“Do you think you’ll be more or less happy than you are now when you’re no longer playing?”“Less happy,” one player answered. “I’ll always miss not being able to play. Not everyone can make 50,000 people stand up and cheer.” But another player answered, “More happy. All the pressures will be over.”And there were numerous nuggets of information.“How did you feel when Hank Aaron broke Babe Ruth’s record?”“It made me proud to be a part of a profession that produces these types of people.”“Do you like giving autographs?”“Not to adults. Yes, to little kids. You really make their day.”“What do you like most about playing major league ball?”“The way little kids look up to you.”Another question we asked was, “If you could change places with any player, who would it be?”Most players said that they were happy being who they were. But pitchers entertained the fantasy of changing places more often than position players. And the player they most often wanted to change places with was Steve Carlton (“He has been the best pitcher in both leagues for the past ten seasons . . . He has one of the best mental attitudes in the game . . . He does his job as well as anyone and works hard at it . . . He has changed with the game and has an awesome pitch and he can hit too . . . I think he’s the best”).Other pitchers on the list included Tom Seaver (“because he has done everything in his career that I hope to accomplish in mine”), Gaylord Perry (“for his consistency and accomplishments”), Phil Neikro (“class and money and fame”), Jim Palmer (“he is my idol”), Storm Davis (“has great attitude and talent and is 20 years old”), and Nolan Ryan (“I just want to make what he pays in taxes each year”).Rod Carew was the only position player with whom multiple respondents said they’d be willing to change places.One player wrote, “With the wife and kids I have and the close friends who live near, nobody could have it any better than I do. If I did [want to change places], it would be with a player whose career is so fantastic that the players he played with and against would say he was the best ever at that position. Not the media or fans, but the players. They are the ones I would want the respect from. The one man would be Johnny Bench.”MORE: 19 storylines to watch during the 2019 MLB seasonMany of the players said that their happiness sprang from a belief in God. Their religious faith was extremely important to them. Another wrote, “The luck factor in baseball and all sports puzzles me.”One comment that I found thought-provoking was, “I think every player should have one great great year just to see what it feels like. Both individual and team-wise, very few do.”Significantly, a dominant theme in the responses was a love of the game.“Baseball has been in my life since I was six years old, and I enjoy it as much now as then. I wish I could give baseball as much as it has given me . . . I’m doing what I’ve wanted to do since I was a little boy . . . I’m doing something that every kid dreams of doing . . . I like the fact that I’m playing at the highest level of competition there is in my profession . . . It’s a hard road. But if you make it, it’s very rewarding . . . I’m 38 and still in love with the game . . . All I ever wanted was to play baseball. My goal was to make it to the major leagues. Now that I am here, it makes all those sacrifices worth it. I would not change my nine years of pro ball for anything . . . Baseball is a beautiful game that’s been changed by modern science and media types and aluminum bats and gloves with flashing lights. It’s hard to concentrate on just the game sometimes, but that makes me love it that much more. I hope I never stop playing baseball.”But the most gratifying thing about the responses was the way that many players reacted to the project itself. Some acknowledged having sought help from a psychiatrist or other psychotherapists in the past, and all but one considered it to have been a worthwhile experience.Beyond that, we got comments such as, “Your questions show thought and much deliberation. It is a good questionnaire . . . This sounds interesting. I would like to see the finished product . . . This is good. People might start realizing that ballplayers have emotions and feelings and aren’t just a baseball card . . . Baseball is strenuous, both physically and mentally. If there’s anything to take a little of the stress off of us by filling this out, I’m all for it.”The final question on the questionnaire was, “Would you be willing to discuss any of these issues further? If so, how would you like us to contact you?”More than half of the players answered “yes” and wrote in their home address or telephone number.“If you want the actual truth,” one player told us, “several times I was tempted to withhold something because it was insulting or something that could be used against me later. All the issues are open. Please call.”We never got the chance.The questionnaire had been mailed to players on the second weekend in December. On Friday, Dec. 17, Marvin Miller telephoned me. He was not a happy camper.Miller told me that he had never been informed of the project and asked for a chronology of what had occurred. I explained the undertaking and recounted the events that led up to the questionnaire being mailed to members of the MLBPA. Miller’s comments and tone of voice made it clear that a hard road lay ahead.”Is there any way we can salvage the project?” I asked.“That’s my decision, not yours,” Miller answered.Then the steady stream of responses stopped. A few more filtered in, but not many. Finally, we received one last questionnaire from a player who wrote on the last page, “I got a letter from the players association regarding your questionnaire. However, I think it is a worthwhile survey so I filled it out anyway. Call me.”The player gave us his home telephone number. He also enclosed a Dec. 21, 1982, memorandum that had been sent to all members of the MLBPA by Marvin Miller.MORE: 19 reasons baseball will be great in 2019Miller’s memorandum began as follows: “Early this month, two writers, Thomas Hauser and William Hoffmann, sent a letter and a questionnaire to all major league baseball players. The letter stated that the purpose of the questionnaire was to obtain material for a proposed article in Sports Illustrated.”Miller went on to state, “The questionnaire, with its 61 questions, was never seen by me or any staff member of the Players Association prior to its being sent to players.” Miller’s letter further advised recipients that the secretary who had given us the addresses had been fired, and closed with the suggestion, “If you have not yet responded to the questionnaire, you may wish to consider whether you should ignore it in light of what has happened.”Miller’s letter was carefully worded. Without directly saying so, he was telling the players to not respond to the survey. I telephoned him. He wouldn’t take my call. I wrote him a letter voicing my displeasure. He sent me back an unpleasant response. That was the end of communication between us.The project was dead. Eighty-four players had returned the questionnaire. That wasn’t enough for a valid statistical study. And there was no way our research could proceed to stage two; follow-up interviews with the players who’d indicated a willingness to talk with us.There was a glimmer of hope in 1983, when Miller was succeeded by Kenneth Moffett as executive director of the Major League Baseball Players Association. Later that year, I telephoned Moffett, explained what had happened, and broached the subject of trying again. Moffett asked me to send him copies of the questionnaire and related correspondence, which I did. Several days later, he telephoned and said, “I’m sorry. I’d love to help you on this. It seems like a worthwhile study, but my hands are tied. I’m in a very difficult position here. Marvin would never allow it.”Two months later, Moffett was dismissed as executive director of the MLBPA. Miller returned to serve as interim executive director until a replacement was named.And that was that. I put the questionnaires in a closet and went on to other things. Time passed. Bill Hoffmann died of cancer in October 2000. His death was a tragedy and a terrible blow to all who loved him. Recently, on a whim, I decided to look at the questionnaires again. Decades had passed since I’d first seen them.“Baseball is a great game and it’s a great profession if you can keep everything in perspective,” read the first questionnaire I looked at. “Ballplayers are normal people, and we encounter many of the same problems most people run into.”Why did Miller do what he did? I think he was angry that the questionnaire had been sent out without his knowledge. Would he have approved the project if it had run through him? I don’t know. It might be that the information we were gathering would have made him nervous. After all, Miller served his players brilliantly on economic issues. His legacy failed when it came to illegal drugs, which continue to endanger the health of union members. And he could have done more to make the players better understood and more sympathetic figures in the eyes of fans.last_img read more

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Man beats peeping Tom to death after catching him outside girlfriend’s window

first_imgiStock(DELRAY, Fla.) — A Florida man has been arrested after catching a peeping Tom outside of his window and beating him to death.Victor Vickery of Delray, Florida, faces a manslaughter charge in the death of 57-year-old Asaad Akar in the incident that occurred in July of last year, according to ABC’s Miami affiliate WPLG.Vickery was getting intimate with his girlfriend in a bedroom in her Fort Lauderdale home, according to the arrest report obtained by WPLG, when they heard a scratching noise coming from outside the window.Vickery went outside to go and inspect the source of the noise and allegedly found Akar standing partly naked by the window.A fight then broke out between Vickery and Akar while Vickery’s girlfriend called the police.Akar, who allegedly had a previous criminal record for prowling, was taken to the hospital after the altercation but died in the hospital from his injuries less than two hours later.Vickery told police that he has had to call the authorities to report a peeping Tom on the premises before.Vickery was arrested and charged with Akar’s death on Thursday and is now being held behind bars on a $100,000 bond while he awaits trial.Copyright © 2019, ABC Audio. All rights reservedlast_img read more

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New officers join drive to grow golf in England

first_img Three new officers have joined the drive to grow the game of golf in England and encourage more people to play. Jamie Blair is the new Disability Officer for the England Golf Partnership (EGP), while Sean Hammill and Ashley Rump join the team of England Golf Regional Development Officers. They will support the delivery of the EGP’s 2013-17 Whole Sport Plan for golf. Its goals include encouraging more people with a disability to take up golf; providing opportunities for people aged over 26 to take up the game and play more often; increasing the number of young people aged 14-25 who play the game. Richard Flint, the England Golf Development Manager, commented: “We’re delighted to welcome Jamie, Sean and Ashley to our team and we look forward to working with them to get more people playing and staying in golf.” Jamie Blair’s national role as EGP Disability Officer will involve supporting County Golf Partnerships to increase participation among people with disabilities. He has been the National Events Co-ordinator for the English Federation of Disability Sport (EFDS) since April 2012, supporting events, recruiting volunteers and working with a range of sport governing bodies. Before that Jamie worked in events administration for the EFDS. Sean Hammill becomes Regional Development Officer for the counties of Cheshire, Derbyshire, Lancashire & Staffordshire. He replaces Melanie Flude, who worked for England Golf for eight years He has been the County Development Officer for Staffordshire since 2011, working to deliver the County Golf Partnership’s Development Plan. He was previously Director of Operations for healthcare information specialists KnowledgePoint 360. Ashley Rump takes on the new post of Regional Development Officer for the counties of Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire, Northamptonshire and BB&O (Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire). He has been working in grass roots sport as Cricket Development Officer for the Oxfordshire Cricket Board, since June 2011. Before that he was a Competition Manager for Oxfordshire County Council. Their appointments mean that England Golf has returned to a team of eight Regional Development Officers, providing a high and consistent level of support for all County Golf Partnerships, counties and golf clubs.  Full details of the changes will be circulated among the current regions. Caption (from left): Jamie Blair, Ashley Rump and Sean Hammill. 22 Jul 2013 New officers join drive to grow golf in England last_img read more

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UPDATED: Wildcats drop heartbreaker at provincials

first_imgWhat could go wrong, went wrong Monday for the West Kootenay Wildcats.Juan de Fuca, a team the Wildcats beat 2-1 earlier in the year, scored all the goals en route to a 3-0 win Monday at the B.C. Hockey Bantam Female Championships in Vernon.Castlegar, with 21 shots on goal could not get one past Juan de Fuca goalie Hailey Martens Scoring in the physically played contest.The Wildcats, win one point in two games, face must wins Tuesday when the team plays Prince George and Tri Cities in final round robin action.Late goal by Bonacci lifts West Kootenay Wildcats into tie with host VernonJessica Bonacci of Trail scored with just over a minute remaining in the game to lift West Kootenay Wildcats to a 3-3 tie against host Greater Vernon Sunday at the B.C. Hockey Bantam Female Championships. West Kootenay sits fifth overall with a single point following Day one of the tournament.Trailing 3-2 West Kootenay pulled its goalie for the extra attacker. The strategy worked as Bonacci ripped the twine to secure at least one point on opening day.Emilie Tebulte of Castlegar and team captain Merissa Dawson of Nelson also scored for the Cats with assists going to Emma Wheeldon of Nelson, Bonacci and Trail’s Julie Sidoni.Greater Vernon held a slim 26-25 shots advantage.West Kootenay meets Juan Fuca Monday at 2 p.m. as round robin play continues.The Cats close out the preliminary round Tuesday with a pair of games against Tri Cities and Prince George.The top two teams in each division qualify for the playoffs Wednesday.The West Kootenay Wildcats consist of a collection of players from throughout the region.last_img read more

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