While Oklahoma State’s offensive line has steadily progressed on the run-blocking front, there is still a lot of room to grow in one of the most important facets of the game.There’s no doubt that the most important player to the Cowboys’ success is Mason Rudolph. The record-setting junior has almost single-handedly turned this program around. He is 20-5 as a starter, but he’s been sacked at least once in every game this year. Taking care of him should be priority number one.Unfortunately, the Cowboys are currently 105th in the nation in sacks allowed, having given up 27 through ten games. That 2.7 per game is a step back from last season’s average of 2.46 and just marginally better than 2014’s abysmal 3.08.Let’s take a look at the Cowboys’ allowed sacks by year.For six years the Cowboys ranked in the top three in the conference and top 15 in the country at protecting their QB. Since then the numbers are drastically worse.That should be no surprise to any of us. We’ve belabored that point over the last three years.What should surprise us is that the Cowboys aren’t making any marked improvement on this front. In fact, as mentioned above, the Cowboys are on pace to take a step backwards this year. Given how good the run game has been, this is somewhat surprising.I will say, the last few games have been better. OSU only allowed four sacks total against WVU, KSU and Tech in the last three outings. That’s a marked improvement from the first seven. It’s no mistake that two of the best yards-per-play outings of the Gundy era have come in the last two games.#okstate has averaged 9+ yards per play in just nine games in the Gundy era. Two have come in the last two weeks. pic.twitter.com/9x1JpzvJFL— Pistols Firing (@pistolsguys) November 14, 2016Sack numbers aren’t just about protecting your quarterback. They are about protecting drives. Possessions are like gold to a coaching staff. If you break down a football game by the numbers, there are a finite number of opportunities to score. Each time your quarterback is sacked you lose a down and put your drive “behind the chains” so to speak.You can gain or lose an edge with turnovers and big plays. But while that’s worked out for the Cowboys at times, those can’t be depended on. Doing so is playing with fire. See Texas Tech. That’s why I don’t get too bent out of shape when Mike Gundy plays a bit conservatively. He knows that for every Rudolph-to-Washington 82-yard connection there is the possibility for a pick-six or a some other horrifying event.The Cowboys end the season with two tough road games. They figure to be underdogs in both. Can their O-line take care of business, protect Rudolph better and give Mike Gundy a fighting chance against TCU and OU to win the Big 12? We’ll see. While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up.
While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up. Mason Rudolph’s poor performance on Saturday was not the only reason Oklahoma State lost in Bedlam, but it was a big one. Rudolph was 11/25 for 186 yards and no TDs. He missed receivers all over the field. Rudolph did run the ball quite well, which was a bright spot, but all in all it was probably the worst performance we have seen from No. 2 since the Texas game last year.Here is Pro Football Focus on his grade.Rudolph seemed to have problems all game with trying to get a grip on the football, as it seemed to be slipping out of his hands every time he threw … [he] was 0-of-7 on passes between 10 and 20 yards. Rudolph found himself under pressure on 8 dropbacks (out of 29) and failed to complete any of his five attempts, while also taking two sacks. While this was a tough game for Rudolph, it shouldn’t take away from the phenomenal season he had in which he graded out at 89.5 overall, among the best college quarterbacks in the country. [PFF]I would blame the rain or the conditions but … well, did you watch Baker Mayfield? No, this one is on Rudolph. For all the adulation he (rightfully) received for winning the 2014 game, he has to take the blame for this one (and he did).“Just a rough day,” said Rudolph after Bedlam. “Honestly, I’ll take all the responsibility for the lack of production, especially in the second half. Obviously, it needed to be better. [My performance was] not great at times. I think I try to do a good job managing the ball in the first half and taking care of the ball and pulling the ball when we needed to but I think our guys up front played well all game and I’ve just got to be more productive … I think we had a great game plan. I think it was just a question of execution on my part and we’ve just got to be better.”As for whether the weather affected him, Rudolph didn’t make excuses.“We kind of practiced a little bit all week in preparation for it, but there are certain times when you’re going tempo and the ball is a little more wet at the beginning of the drive than it is when you’re not going tempo,” said Rudolph. “But once again, no excuses. We’ve just got to be consistent.”Again, no bigger fan of No. 2 than me. He will be fine. He is 21-6 as a starter and just lead OSU to back-to-back 10-win* seasons. To go Gundy on you … in the society we live in, there is maybe no bigger issue than the one that befalls individuals who cannot hold two truths in their minds at the same time. Rudolph can both have been awful in Bedlam (he was) and still be a great college quarterback (he is).The road issues are a real thing, and we will dive into them more as the season winds down. And I suppose the silver lining here is that there is a sub-zero chance Rudolph will declare for the NFL Draft now so we get another year of him with all those weapons. And one more shot at winning Bedlam.
Bowl season is fun. The players get to spend that much more time with their teammates and coaches. They get to travel with their team and some get to play in front of friends and family that may not be able to make it to Stillwater.But among the more underrated perks of a bowl trip for the players are the bowl gifts that each bowl’s officials give out. The SportsBusiness Journal has released a list for each of the 2016-17 bowl season’s games with what each player will receive.Oklahoma State and Colorado players will each received a gift set that includes: Apple Watch Nike+ (retails for around $399), $110 Best Buy gift card, myCharge HubPlus portable charger, team panoramic photo, and a mini-helmet.There is an NCAA limit of $550.00 value per person. *Of course there is.*Check out the full list to see what each bowl game’s officials give out. While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up.
Manchester United Lindelof accepts Man Utd competition as he lives the ‘dream’ Chris Burton 17:15 5/3/2018 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Getty Images Manchester United Premier League Crystal Palace v Manchester United Crystal Palace The Swedish defender has endured a testing debut campaign in England, but believes he is adapting to the demands of life at a global superpower Victor Lindelof admits to living “a dream” at Manchester United and is accepting of competition for places at “one of the biggest clubs in the world”.The Sweden international defender moved to Old Trafford in the summer of 2017, with life at Benfica traded in for that at the Theatre of Dreams.Adjusting to the demands of a Premier League stage has not been easy, with Jose Mourinho having eased the 23-year-old into his plans following a testing opening to his debut campaign. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Williams case shows Solskjaer isn’t holding Man Utd’s youngsters back – he’s protecting them Goalkeeper crisis! Walker to the rescue but City sweating on Ederson injury ahead of Liverpool clash Out of his depth! Emery on borrowed time after another abysmal Arsenal display Diving, tactical fouls & the emerging war of words between Guardiola & Klopp Lindelof has, however, improved as the season has progressed and is happy with his development at a club he always hoped would give him a chance.He told Sky Sports ahead of a possible outing against Crystal Palace on Monday: “Coming here to play at this great club has been a dream for me since I was a kid, so yeah – I enjoy it every day.”I wake up every day and I’m very happy I get to come here and do what I love. I don’t take anything for granted, I work hard every day.”I’m just trying to do my best every day, work hard and improve. When you’re given the chance to play, it’s always nice to be out there and help the team, and I’m just happy to be out there doing that.”We have world-class players in every position and I think that’s very important to have. This club is one of the biggest clubs in the world, so you’re obviously going to have that.”Lindelof has made 23 appearances this season, although only eight of those have been Premier League starts.He admits that the English top-flight has been something of an eye-opener for him, with the standard considerably higher than that he experienced while impressing in Portugal.”Every game is difficult here,” Lindelof added, with United looking to wrap up a runner-up finish this season.”Every opponent is going to work hard, fight for 90 minutes to try to get three points, and that’s what makes the Premier League such a good league, the level of competition. It was a bit different in Portugal, we had only a few big games during the season.”We want to win as many games as possible and of course, you always want to come first. But if not, second is there, and that’s what we have to work for.”We’re improving as a team every day. It’s important for us to play a lot of games, and just keep going.” Check out Goal’s Premier League 2019-20 fantasy football podcast for game tips, debate and rivalries.
Liverpool 0 Porto 0 (5-0 agg): Low-key Reds book quarter-final spot Guy Atkinson Last updated 1 year ago 05:41 7/3/2018 Getty Images Liverpool booked their spot in the Champions League last eight despite an underwhelming performance against Porto. Liverpool booked their Champions League quarter-final place with an uninspiring 0-0 draw against Porto at Anfield.The Reds’ lacklustre performance hardly mattered, though, after a devastating 5-0 win in Portugal three weeks ago all-but secured a first appearance in the last-eight since 2008-09.That first-leg cushion enabled Jurgen Klopp to make five changes to the side that beat Newcastle United 2-0 on Saturday, with leading goalscorer Mohamed Salah dropping to the bench for Adam Lallana, who was making his first start in two months. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Williams case shows Solskjaer isn’t holding Man Utd’s youngsters back – he’s protecting them Goalkeeper crisis! Walker to the rescue but City sweating on Ederson injury ahead of Liverpool clash Out of his depth! Emery on borrowed time after another abysmal Arsenal display Diving, tactical fouls & the emerging war of words between Guardiola & Klopp Sadio Mane had two clear chances to open the scoring in the first half, the second of which crashed against the post, while Dejan Lovren headed over.James Milner and Roberto Firmino also squandered opportunities in the second period and Lovren blocked a late effort from Oliver Torres to ensure the Reds remain one of three unbeaten sides in this year’s competition alongside Tottenham and Barcelona.Liverpool were a long way from their swashbuckling Premier League form and Klopp will hope they have not lost any impetus ahead of the crunch clash against Manchester United at Old Trafford on Saturday.#UCL last eight awaits. pic.twitter.com/2dbbpYr5VX— Liverpool FC (@LFC) March 6, 2018After a sluggish opening, the hosts burst into life midway through the half with Mane inches away from opening the scoring. The Senegal forward – who scored six goals in his previous three Champions League games – met Joe Gomez’s fizzed cross with an acrobatic volley, which flashed agonisingly over. Mane went even closer just after half-hour mark when he pulled Milner’s pass out of the sky and drove a low half-volley against the inside of Iker Casillas’ right-hand post. Milner was the architect again soon after, whipping in a teasing free-kick that Lovren could only head just high of the target.32: Casillas beaten but Mane’s shot strikes the post and is cleared away. Brilliant pass from Milner.[0-0]https://t.co/5rVaVEyNIn pic.twitter.com/bRmReWi66c— Liverpool FC (@LFC) March 6, 2018Milner had a chance of his own two minutes after the restart, but he failed to make a clean connection with Lallana’s cross and the ball bobbled harmlessly wide.Porto finally carved out an opening when Majeed Waris shrugged off the attention of two Liverpool defenders to fire a low shot towards goal, which was kept out by the under-worked Loris Karius. Firmino saw a goal-bound effort blocked by Porto captain Felipe moments before being withdrawn for Danny Ings.Salah was brought off the bench with 16 minutes remaining and, unsurprisingly, went close to adding to his 32 goals this season, though Casillas was equal to his drilled attempt.Oliver almost spoiled Liverpool’s outing late on, while Ings should have scored his first Champions League goal with a looping header that Casillas did well to paw away and keep the Reds off the scoreboard. Key Opta facts:- Iker Casillas made his 167th appearance in the Champions League, 16 more than any other player in the history of the competition (Xavi next on 151).- This was the first Champions League game this season with no first-half shots on target.- Liverpool failed to score at Anfield for the first time in their last nine games in all competitions, since a 0-0 draw against West Brom in December.- The Reds have kept five clean sheets in their last six games in the Champions League, only conceding against Sevilla in November (3-3). read more
UEFA Champions League Barcelona vs Chelsea: TV channel, live stream, squad news & preview Ryan Kelly Last updated 1 year ago 00:20 15/3/2018 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(2) Shaun Botterill UEFA Champions League Barcelona v Chelsea Chelsea Barcelona The Blaugrana welcome the Premier League outfit to Catalunya as they each attempt to reach the last eight of the competition Barcelona welcome Chelsea to Camp Nou on Wednesday in the second leg of their Champions League last-16 tie.The sides are locked level after the first leg at Stamford Bridge, which finished 1-1, and they will be doing their utmost to ensure their place in the quarter-finals.With home advantage and an away goal under their belts, Barca come into the game in a better position than the Blues, but Antonio Conte’s men will be undeterred. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Williams case shows Solskjaer isn’t holding Man Utd’s youngsters back – he’s protecting them Goalkeeper crisis! Walker to the rescue but City sweating on Ederson injury ahead of Liverpool clash Out of his depth! Emery on borrowed time after another abysmal Arsenal display Diving, tactical fouls & the emerging war of words between Guardiola & Klopp However, the Catalan giants also boast a vastly superior set of recent results, going unbeaten in the last 14 matches in all competitions, while Chelsea have lost two of their last five. Game Barcelona vs Chelsea Date Wednesday March 14 Time 19:45 GMT / 14:45 ET Stream (US only) fubo TV (7-day free trial) TV Channel & Live Stream In the United States (US), the game can be watched live and on-demand with fuboTV (7-day free trial). New users can sign up for a free seven-day trial of the live sports streaming service, which can be accessed via iOS, Android, Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV, Roku and Apple TV as well as on a web browser. US TV channel Online stream Fox Sports 1 fubo TV (7-day free trial) In the United Kingdom (UK), the game can be watched live on TV on BT Sport 2 and it can be streamed live online using the BT Sport app. UK TV channel Online stream BT Sport 2 BT Sport app Squads & Team News Position Barcelona players Goalkeepers Ter Stegen, Cillessen, Ortola Defenders Semedo, Pique, Alba, Digne, Vidal, Umtiti, Mina, Vermaelen Midfielders Rakitic, Iniesta, Busquets, D. Suarez, Paulinho, Roberto, Gomes, Alena Forwards L. Suarez, Messi, Dembele, Alcacer, Arnaiz Messi returns to the squad having missed Barca’s last game for the birth of his third child, while Andres Iniesta took part in training on Monday and could be involved.Nelson Semedo remains sidelined with an injury, while Philippe Coutinho is cup-tied because of his previous involvement in this season’s competition with Liverpool.Potential Barcelona starting XI: Ter Stegen; Vidal, Umtiti, Pique, Alba; Rakitic, Busquets, Iniesta; Suarez, Dembele, Messi. Position Chelsea players Goalkeepers Caballero, Courtois, Eduardo Defenders Rudiger, Alonso, Zappacosta, Cahill, Christensen, Azpilicueta, Luiz, Emerson, Sterling Midfielders Fabregas, Drinkwater, Kante, Barkley, Hazard, Pedro, Bakayoko, Moses, Willian, Scott Forwards Morata, Giroud, Hudson-Odoi Chelsea are likely to be without defender David Luiz, who is recovering from an ankle injury, while Ross Barkley remains sidelined with a hamstring issue.Potential Chelsea starting XI: Courtois; Rudiger, Christensen, Azpilicueta, Alonso, Zappacosta; Kante, Fabregas, Hazard, Willian; Morata.Betting & Match Odds Barcelona are 8/15 favourites to win the match and 2/9 to qualify for the quarter-finals according to dabblebet, while Chelsea are priced at 5/1 to win the game and 3/1 to progress. A draw between the teams, which, depending on the score, could see either side qualify for the next round, is a 16/5 bet.Click here to see all of dabblebet’s offers for the game, including goalscoring markets, correct score predictions and more.Match Preview When the sides met in the first leg back in February, Chelsea, and Willian in particular, looked to have the measure of Barcelona, but Messi responded to the Brazilian’s goal by breaking his Blues hoodoo to hand the Catalan giants the initiative heading into the second leg.Since then, Conte’s side have struggled, with defeats to Manchester United and Manchester City delivering a serious blow to their hopes of securing a top-four Premier League finish and thus, Champions League qualification for next season.They improved somewhat in their last outing against Crystal Palace to claim a 2-1 win, with Willian again demonstrating the type of quality they will be relying on if they are to upset the Blaugrana at Camp Nou on Wednesday.Given that Barca are in sensational form and the fact that they are at home, where they have not lost a game since their Supercopa defeat to Real Madrid last August, Conte is aware that Chelsea must be patient as they attempt to defy the odds.”We must be very good but when you play against this type of team, which I think is one of the best in the world, you must be prepared to suffer, in the same way we did in the first leg, where I think we were almost perfect,” the Blues boss said.However, with Messi scoring five goals in his last four appearances and eager to continue that form, they will have to be careful not to end up suffering too much.
World Cup Blow for Russia as injury puts Kokorin’s World Cup in doubt Alex Fisher 16:16 16/3/2018 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Getty Images World Cup Russia Zenit v RB Leipzig Zenit UEFA Europa League Premier League The forward suffered knee ligament damage during Zenit’s defeat RB Leipzig and is set to sit out as his country hosts the world’s biggest tournament World Cup hosts Russia look set to be without Aleksandr Kokorin after the Zenit striker ruptured cruciate ligaments in his right knee on Thursday.Kokorin left the field after eight minutes of Zenit’s Europa League clash with RB Leipzig, the last-16 second leg ending 1-1 to send the German side through 3-2 on aggregate.The 26-year-old was seen clutching his right knee as he was substituted and Zenit confirmed on Friday that the diagnosis did not look good. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Williams case shows Solskjaer isn’t holding Man Utd’s youngsters back – he’s protecting them Goalkeeper crisis! Walker to the rescue but City sweating on Ederson injury ahead of Liverpool clash Out of his depth! Emery on borrowed time after another abysmal Arsenal display Diving, tactical fouls & the emerging war of words between Guardiola & Klopp “Aleksandr Kokorin has been diagnosed with a rupture of the cruciate ligaments in his right knee,” a club statement read.”The Russian international striker will soon head to Rome for treatment. Details of any planned surgery will be announced shortly.”Although no timescale was put on Kokorin’s recovery, it appears unlikely he will be ready for this year’s World Cup – where he would have been a key member of Stanislav Cherchesov’s squad.Kokorin – who has previously been linked with a move to Arsenal – has scored 12 goals for Russia in 48 appearances and found the net on 19 occasions in all competitions for Zenit this season.
Manchester United Mourinho tells struggling Manchester United stars to ‘grow up’ Peter Hanson 07:29 17/3/2018 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(3) Getty Images Manchester United UEFA Champions League José Mourinho Manchester United v Brighton & Hove Albion Brighton & Hove Albion FA Cup Manchester United v Sevilla Sevilla After seeing the Red Devils crash out of the Champions League to Sevilla, the manager believes his charges need to mature to reach the top Jose Mourinho has told his embattled players to “grow up” and start living up to the pressure of representing Manchester United.The Portuguese faced heavy criticism over his negative tactics in the Red Devils’ shock Champions League last-16 exit to Sevilla on Tuesday, but came out fighting during an epic 12-minute tirade at a news conference previewing United’s FA Cup quarter-final against Brighton and Hove Albion.During the embargoed section of his press briefing, though, Mourinho had some choice words for a squad that flopped in Europe and find themselves 16 points adrift of rivals Manchester City in the Premier League. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Williams case shows Solskjaer isn’t holding Man Utd’s youngsters back – he’s protecting them Goalkeeper crisis! Walker to the rescue but City sweating on Ederson injury ahead of Liverpool clash Out of his depth! Emery on borrowed time after another abysmal Arsenal display Diving, tactical fouls & the emerging war of words between Guardiola & Klopp Mourinho did not go so far as to call out the players he perceives to be under-performing, opting instead to praise Nemanja Matic and Romelu Lukaku, but warned his squad they must be stronger to survive at Old Trafford.”If you want to make a real top team, with a top mentality, you need to grow up and the best way is to have this kind of feeling,” he said.”Players have to learn how to cope with that level of expectation and that level of pressure. They have to survive, and when they survive, they become stronger.”I said we are not one of the top teams, not one of the favourites to win. I told you that with these words because I cannot tell you with different words while I am still in competition.”I cannot be in a competition, go there and say we have no chance. I couldn’t tell you.”You cannot expect me to say ‘this and that player, they have to do better’. I prefer to say that Matic and Lukaku are performing at a high level until the last match.”But I cannot tell you the ones that are not performing. I cannot tell you before a Champions League match.”The boss wraps up a passionate 12-minute message to #MUFC fans during his press conference… pic.twitter.com/JRaaBMpdcd— Manchester United (@ManUtd) March 16, 2018Mourinho, though, rejected suggestions that United were favourites to progress against Sevilla, and claimed the team that is fifth in LaLiga are better equipped for success that his squad.”We went out to a side that’s more successful than Manchester United in the last seven years in Europe,” he added.”We went out to a side that has a huge tradition in knockout competitions, a side in the Spanish cup final. We’re out to a team that knocked out Atletico Madrid in two legs.”We were knocked out by a team that’s brilliant in their approach for many years, with their scouting system, the way they invest with every Euro.”Do you think they didn’t have any players who could play in my team? In Sevilla, there are many players who would play in my team.”
While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up. STILLWATER — When Hawaii granted Dru Brown his release in the summer of 2018, it was a junior college connection that led him to Oklahoma State.Brown had started 22 games in two years with the Rainbow Warriors where he threw for 5,273 yards and scored 43 total touchdowns when he took to social media, stating he received his release. In the post, he thanked his coaches and Hawaii as a whole before announcing he would graduate and transfer elsewhere.Among the replies of gratitude and well-wishes, there was Sione Finefeuiaki. Brown and Finefeuiaki were teammates for a season at the College of San Mateo, and Finefeuiaki, a cowboy back at OSU in 2017 and 2018, had an idea as to where his former teammate should transfer:“I didn’t think he’d actually pursue it because at the time, Dru had places like Washington State, LSU and other places offer him, as well,” Finefeuiaki, who played two seasons at OSU in 2017 and 2018, told PFB in an interview this week. “I never thought that he’d actually come to OSU. I kind of did it jokingly, but we talked and found out he was serious about it and we kind of went from there.”From there, Finefeuiaki passed Brown’s tape to OSU player development specialist Beni Tonga, where the idea of Brown coming to Stillwater got shot up the line.“I talked to Beni,” Finefeuiaki said. “At first, I would bring it up, and Beni was like, ‘OK.’ Then I asked Beni the next day. I was like, ‘Beni, did you check out his film?’ Beni would say that he was going to but he hadn’t looked at it yet.“So, I kind of bugged Beni about it. Beni, he also helps with the cowboy backs, so I built a pretty good relationship with Beni. I kept bugging Beni about it, telling Beni that this guy’s the real deal. I showed him Dru’s highlight tape from Hawaii, and if you’ve seen Dru’s highlight tape from Hawaii, the man goes off. I guess Beni finally got to it, and he’s able to show (Mike) Yurcich and (Mike) Gundy, and it kind of went from there.”Brown and Finefeuiaki are both from the Bay Area in California. Finefeuiaki said the two played against each other in high school before teaming up at the College of San Mateo. In Brown’s one season with the Bulldogs, he threw for 1,879 yards and 21 touchdowns in a triple-option offense. In his final game at the junior college level, Brown threw for 425 yards and seven scores.That 2015 season was Finefeuiaki’s first of two with the Bulldogs. That season, he played as a linebacker before moving to fullback in 2016. Despite being on opposite sides of the ball, Finefeuiaki said it wasn’t hard becoming friends with Brown.“Dru was just really open,” Finefeuiaki said. “It’s pretty easy to build a relationship with Dru. Most of our goals kind of aligned. We both wanted to go big Division I. Dru is really deep into his faith. Dru’s one of those guys where it’s just easy to click with him.”After Finefeuiaki got Brown’s foot in the door, Brown said he was able to talk on the phone with OSU coach Mike Gundy and then-offensive coordinator Mike Yurcich. Brown took a visit and decided to use his final season of eligibility away from the beaches of Hawaii or comfort of Northern California in Stillwater.The transition wasn’t as seamless as it appears — and it still isn’t. Sure, Mason Rudolph was headed to the Pittsburgh Steelers after starting games for the Cowboys in the past four seasons. But, Brown was joining the team the same time All-Texas everything quarterback Spencer Sanders was, and fifth-year senior Taylor Cornelius was still at OSU after learning under Rudolph for four seasons.After being Hawaii’s guy the past two seasons, Brown was limited to one snap at OSU in 2018, and it only came because Cornelius’ helmet came off in the Liberty Bowl. Not many grad transfers’ idea of a dream start at a Power 5 school.‘I’m a firm believer that it’s beautiful everywhere’Stillwater summers are what you make them.For some, it’s a boring town to be in during June and July as a good chunk of the population leaves when the school year ends. Others embrace the serenity of things, something Dru Brown did this summer.Brown is from San Mateo, California, which is between San Francisco and San Jose. When he was looking for something to do in the middle of America, he turned to offensive linemen Johnny Wilson, a Texan, and Ry Schneider, an Oklahoman.“Can you guys teach me how to fish? Because I’ve never been fishing before,” Brown asked.“I had to fix the pole a couple times, but he got the hang of it,” Wilson said of Brown’s first outing. “He’s getting better. He’s good. He can throw an open face now, he can throw the spinner, so it’s good.”For four straight days Brown didn’t catch a thing, but he said he was adamant on at least catching something before he turned this new hobby down. Then he finally got one.Well DAG-GUM 🐠🐟 pic.twitter.com/J3lvX4k4OT— Dru Brown (@dbrownTNDO) July 27, 2019“As soon as I caught something, it was like an addiction,” Brown said. “We’ve gone a bunch. Obviously, camp started, so we can’t go out as much. I’m sure that me and Johnny will go as soon as we get a day off here soon.”Oklahoma is not California, and it’s certainly not Hawaii. Although Oklahoma might not have California’s weather or Hawaii’s beaches, Brown said the state has its own appeal and beauty.“It’s just different,” Brown said. “I’m a firm believer that it’s beautiful everywhere,” he adds. “Being from California, the transition to Hawaii was different, but the transition out here was really different.“If I didn’t have to sit last year, and sit behind Corn, I would have never, probably, fished ever. It’s just a blessing in disguise. Me being out here for a year, and me getting involved in things people do out here, it’s beautiful in its own way, for sure.”The End of Brown’s Well-Traveled Collegiate CareerOSU has yet to name a starting QB, and it appears the two will likely share snaps early in the season. Still, there are more ways for Brown to prove himself as a college QB than just touchdowns and victories.“Leadership, I think that’s one thing Dru was able to do with this offseason,” Finefeuiaki said. “He was able to show his leadership because when Dru came last year, he came right at fall camp. Nobody really knew who Dru was. Whereas this year, he had the whole offseason to show his work ethic and all that. His faith, his leadership, his accountability and just how hard he works. The guy’s always putting the extra work in. … I don’t think there’s anybody who works harder than Dru.”What might’ve been originally been just one year for Brown in Stillwater quickly turned into two, as he was able to take advantage of the new rule that allows players to play in up to four games while still retaining a redshirt. He went about his business, spent a year in OSU’s system and now might start for one of the best offenses in the country.There aren’t enough fish in Lake McMurtry to match that kind of anticipation.
Ames, Iowa, where seasons go to fall apart or get back on track.Oklahoma State defeated Iowa State 34-27 after back-to-back not great games from the Pokes. No longer will I have to hand out Ds for an abundance of turnovers or a defense that allows double-digit chunk plays. At least not this week.OSU’s Defense: AJust when you think Jim Knowles’ time as OSU’s defensive coordinator might be dead and buried …The Cowboys’ defense won that game for OSU, and it picked apart what some consider to be the best quarterback in the league.Brock Purdy came into Saturday’s game with four interceptions in the Cyclones’ first seven games of the year, and he threw three in the fourth quarter against OSU.The picks didn’t seem fluky either. There were a handful of near-INTs in the first half, and the Cowboys had 11 pass break-ups in the game.Spencer Sanders: B-This wasn’t a world-beater game from Spencer Sanders, and the offense honestly struggled mightly in the second half, but he gave the Pokes’ playmakers a chance.His 249 passing yards are boosted by the fact that Tylan Wallace and Braydon Johnson ran for a combined 121 yards after catch on two plays. But, Sanders played his role. Apart from his lone turnover, he didn’t try to do too much, and that’s a performance he can build off.Tylan Wallace: A+This is all you need to see:Matt Ammendola and Tom Hutton: A+Kickers and punters don’t get a whole lot of love.Like offensive linemen, you don’t often notice them unless something terrible happens, but OSU has two good ones.Will start with Hutton, who has taken some flack early in his college career at times. However, Hutton’s 17 punts downed inside the 20-yard line leads the conference by three. He also has just one touchback this season, meaning he has been quite accurate.Sure, he hasn’t gotten to unleash his leg yet this season with only four of his punts going longer than 50 yards, but he is a strength in the battle of field position. Three of Hutton’s six punts from Saturday were downed inside Iowa State’s 20.As for Ammendola, he’s 12-for-12 this season on field goals. He nailed a season-long 49-yarder Saturday like it was an extra point.In his early days as a Cowboy, Ammendola was known as a kid with a big leg who was inaccurate, and as a senior, he’s proving to be an all-around rock for OSU’s special teams. While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up.
Posted on June 2, 2010July 14, 2014Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)The Averting Maternal Death and Disability Program (AMDD) cordially invites you to attend the launch of Under the Radar, At the Frontline. This interactive photo exhibition features the life-saving work of non-physician clinicians in Malawi. The launch will take place at the Women Deliver Conference (June 7-9) in Washington, D.C. and is open to all conference participants.Date: Monday, June 7, 2010Time: 10:35 – 10:55 a.m. (immediately following Opening Plenary)Location: Women Deliver Conference Registration areaInvited guests include Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Mary of Denmark and Dr. Chisale Mhango, Director of the Reproductive Health Unit in the National Ministry of Health of Malawi.This work is generously supported by the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Irish Aid, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.Share this: ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read:
ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read: Posted on June 1, 2010June 1, 2016Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Saving Newborn Lives and Johns Hopkins University are leading a group conducting a short survey on implementation experiences with Clean Birth Kits, including contents, methods of distribution, and incentives/disincentives issues. The survey also includes potential CBK “add ons.” The results will be used to summarize the evidence on the use of birth kits in various contexts, to identify knowledge gaps, and, where appropriate, to make programmatic recommendations.Please click here to participate in the survey.To learn more about the Clean Birth Kits Working Group and its members, click here.Share this:
Cristiano Ronaldo Ronaldo is still priceless for Real Madrid and Portugal, says Salgado Nizaar Kinsella Click here to see more stories from this author Chelsea correspondent Last updated 1 year ago 18:45 6/15/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(5) Cristiano Ronaldo Real Madrid Spain Portugal World Cup Portugal v Spain Lionel Messi The Santiago Bernabeu legend is backing a talismanic forward to continue his starring role for both club and country in the years to come Michel Salgado says Cristiano Ronaldo is unsellable for Real Madrid, while he worries about the threat that the Portuguese superstar will pose to Spain in a crunch World Cup clash on Friday.The 33-year-old won the Champions League for a fifth time as Madrid overcame Liverpool 3-1 in May, but it was Gareth Bale who proved to be the match winner on that occasion as he scored twice off the bench.Immediately after the match, Ronaldo shocked the world by casting his future into doubt as he referred to his time with the Blancos in the past tense. Salgado, though, who played for 10 years at the Santiago Bernabeu, believes that Ronaldo is still the best player on Real’s books and will be kept on this summer. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Perfection from Pulisic: Chelsea’s Captain America has arrived in the Premier League Why always Raheem? ‘Unplayable’ Sterling setting a standard Man City’s other stars need to match ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar “After what I have seen in the last season, why would they move Ronaldo out of Real Madrid? He is still there in the key moments,” Salgado told Goal during the Betfair Road to Russia preview. “We are talking about scoring always in quarter-finals, semi-finals, and knockout stages. When you need him he is there.”To be honest, he is performing fantastically, he knows to save his energy for the big moments. He knows his body, he knows his head. He is a real professional guy. He is working hard to be the best. “Cristiano is a guy who has to work hard every day to be in there and he is doing it. He is an example in terms of professionalism and, for me, obviously he has to stay in Real Madrid for as long as he wants. He is so much for us.”I wanted to see Real Madrid without him for one big game in the Champions League because we never miss him. Obviously it would be really, really different. When he is in there, the opposition defenders are shaking, they know he is in there. It is stupid to say he is too old or whatever.”Obviously he is getting mature, he is 33 years old. The physicality is dropping of course. The speed, the pace but he has got something that I don’t think right now that any other player has got. This is the smell to score goals. He has got something special when it comes to the goal.”He always puts the ball, at the right time, at the right moment into the goal. That’s something that is priceless right now in football.”Salgado won four league titles and two Champions League trophies during his time with Real Madrid and is considered to be a club legend. He also played 53 times for Spain, including in the 2006 World Cup, but missed out in 2002 due to injury.The 42-year-old says this World Cup represents Ronaldo’s last chance to win the highest honour in international football, though he thinks the Portugal star’s great rival may have a shot at playing in 2022. “It is going to be difficult for Cristiano Ronaldo to get there in the next World Cup,” Salgado said. “Maybe [Lionel] Messi has one more, probably yes. It is one of the last chances they have got to win the World Cup. That’s what the World Cup is all about.”Messi and Ronaldo, they know it. They know they have got their last chance to try to win it and that’s why it is going to be an amazing World Cup.”Spain’s opening game against Portugal will see six Spanish Real Madrid stars possibly facing their club team-mate. Salgado thinks both sides will be desperate not to lose in their opening match and that fear could therefore creep into each side’s play.”To be honest [Ronaldo] is unlucky that we have got our first game against Portugal,” Salgado added. “There is a rivalry because we are neighbours. There has always been a big rivalry in there and Cristiano Ronaldo is in there. He is our main player in Real Madrid. He is our soul so, for us, it is difficult to see us playing against Cristiano Ronaldo.“At the same time because it is a tricky group, whoever loses this game will have a lot of pressure for the second and third game. I see this game with more fear to lose it than action and belief and passion to win it. It is the first game, we know it is difficult and the first game is always important in the World Cup for the way you are going to progress.”Let’s see what happens but I am going to tell you, if you lose the first game in this group, it is not going to be easy because you have got Iran and Morocco in the second and third games. I know both teams and to be honest, they are going to make our lives complicated.”
Bayern Munich have denied an €80 million (£72m/$91m) transfer for Atletico Madrid’s Lucas Hernandez has been agreed, though sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic has spoken of his admiration for the defender.Reports in Spain from sports newspaper Marca claimed a deal for France international Lucas that would smash the Bundesliga transfer record was imminent, yet this was strongly refuted by an Atletico club statement on Wednesday.Responding to the rumours, Atletico president Enrique Cerezo also told Sportyou that Lucas, who has a contract 2024, “wants to continue with us”. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? However, Bayern’s Salihamidzic hinted the 22-year-old could be a target for the Bundesliga champions in the January transfer window.”I won’t comment on speculation,” Salihamidzic told reporters after Wednesday’s 1-0 win against RB Leipzig.”We will do something, even though it is always difficult in the winter.”Hernandez is a very good player who I follow since the World Cup.”Lucas reportedly has a release clause worth €80m in the contract he signed in June and Bayern chief executive Karl-Heinz Rummenigge feels this opens the door for a potential move.The transfer would see him overtake Virgil van Dijk as the world’s most expensive defender.”I can’t deny or confirm anything,” added Rummenigge. “You can only confirm something when it is done. And this is not done yet.”It surely is an advantage that the player can get out of his contract at any time.”Hasan is very busy at the moment. We will inform Atletico’s bosses as soon as there is concrete interest.”We have a very good relationship and this is a matter of friendship and style.”Lucas, who started all seven games for France in Les Bleus’ World Cup triumph at Russia 2018, previously said he rejected the chance to leave Atletico for city rivals Real Madrid.
Arsenal forced into early kick-off for Europa League tieby Freddie Taylor10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveArsenal will be forced to play their Europa League round of 32 at 5pm, UEFA have confirmed.UEFA regulations do not allow teams from the same city to play on the same day.With Chelsea receiving priority after winning the FA Cup, Arsenal have been given the early time slot.A statement from UEFA read: “Due to the city clash between Chelsea FC and Arsenal FC, and in order to respect the sporting criteria of the competition (both teams are seeded and have to play the return leg of their respective round of 32 ties at home), one of the two return-leg matches will be played on a Wednesday.”In accordance with the principles set by the Club Competitions Committee, Chelsea FC have priority, having won the national domestic cup. Arsenal FC with therefore play their return leg in the round of 32 at home on Wednesday 20 February 2019, at 18.00 CET (17.00 GMT), irrespective of their opponents.”The Gunners have drawn BATE Borisov for the tie, while Chelsea will face Malmo. About the authorFreddie TaylorShare the loveHave your say
TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Rangers boss Gerrard a shock target for Besiktasby Paul Vegas13 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveRangers boss Steven Gerrard has emerged as a shock target for Besiktas.The Turkish giants are mulling over whether to sack under-fire boss Abdullah Avci.Gerrard has been impressing with his steady work in the Scottish Premiership at Rangers, who currently hold a two-point lead at the top of the table.The Ibrox side have only lost one game so far this season, and Besiktas are now considering the Liverpool legend as the man for the hotseat, says BeIN Sports.At present the Blacks Eagles sit in 12th place, with just eight points from seven matches played.
GANGNEUNG, South Korea – Canadian long-track speedskater Ted-Jan Bloemen has won a silver medal at the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics.Bloemen was edged off the top of podium in the men’s 5,000 metres by legendary Dutchman Sven Kramer, who broke his own Olympic record to take his third straight gold in the event in six minutes 9.76 seconds.The world-record holder in the event, Bloemen finished in 6:11.616. He edged Norway’s Sverre Lunde Pedersen by two hundredths of a second.It was Canada’s third medal of the day at the Games after snowboarders Max Parrot and Mark McMorris took silver and bronze in the men’s slopestyle.The 31-year-old Kramer, a four-time Olympian who has dominated the sport, won the event in Vancouver in 2010 and Sochi in 2014.Coming into Pyeongchang, Kramer’s Olympic medal tally stood at three gold, two silver and two bronze. He has won the world all-round championship nine straight years and set the Olympic 5,000 record (6:10.76) in Sochi.The Dutch-born Bloemen holds world records in the 5,000 (6.01.86) and 10,000 (12:36.30), erasing marks set by Kramer. The 31-year-old from Calgary was making his Olympic debut.The Olympic 10,000 metres is set for Feb. 15 with the team pursuit Feb. 21.Bloemen’s father Gerhard-Jan was born in Bathurst, N.B., and lived in Canada for seven years before his family returned to the Netherlands in 1964. Ted-Jan Bloemen made the move back to Canada in June 2014, finding a speedskating home after spinning his wheels in the talent-rich Dutch system and missing out on Sochi selection.Kramer is chasing Finland’s Clas Thunberg and American Eric Heiden, who both have won five Olympic speed skating golds.
Annie Lennox is to be honored with the 22nd Music Industry Trusts Award.Annie will receive the award in recognition of her outstanding contribution to British music and tireless charity work at a gala dinner on November 4.David Munns OBE, chairman of the MITS Award committee, said: “This is very much an award from the wider British music business to honour Annie Lennox’s unique contributions to our industry. Every year – and this is our 22nd year – the British music industry comes together to honour and salute one person’s special contribution.“This year the MITS Award is being presented to Annie in recognition of her universally acclaimed status as an artist, songwriter, HIV/Aids activist and social activist who indefatigably supports and raises awareness for HIV charities in Africa, and champions humanitarian causes. One of Britain’s most successful songwriters, the recipient of eight BRIT Awards, four Ivor Awards and four Grammys and the most successful female British artist in UK music history with over 80 million records sold worldwide: Annie Lennox we salute and celebrate you.”Lennox said of the honour: “I’m incredibly touched and honoured to be considered as a recipient of the 22nd Music Industry Trusts Award. Music has given me a lifetime of experiences and opportunities that I never would have dreamed possible, and I feel very privileged to have been able to become an artist and communicator, especially as a woman.”The Music Industry Trusts Award, now in its 22nd year, has raised over £4.3 million for Nordoff Robbins and the BRIT Trust. It has earned its place in the entertainment industry due to the great names that have held this honour: Sir George Martin, Ahmet Ertegun, Sir Elton John and Bernie Taupin, Lucian Grainge CBE, John Barry OBE, Sir Michael Parkinson CBE, Lord Andrew Lloyd Webber, Sir Tom Jones, Kylie Minogue OBE, Sir Harvey Goldsmith, Jools Holland OBE and Gary Barlow OBE.The Award was founded to recognise outstanding achievement in the UK music industry as well as to benefit the charitable work of Nordoff Robbins and the BRIT Trust.The Award is unique because it recognises the contribution that an individual has made to the industry across a range of activities: record producer, film music composer, broadcaster, artist, music executive, songwriter and concert impresario. The Award evening has become renowned for its magic moments, with unique live performances that have a special resonance for the recipient.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has praised Paul Pogba and David de Gea for their impact during United’s 3-1 win against Huddersfield Town on Boxing Day.United beat Huddersfield 3-1 at Old Trafford to hand Solskjaer a second successive victory in his first home game in charge as interim manager.Paul Pogba scored a brace and David de Gea pulled off an impressive save when the game was still 1-0 in United’s favor.“It wasn’t the best of games,” Solskjaer told Sky Sports.Liverpool legend Nicol slams Harry Maguire’s Man United form Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Steve Nicol believes Harry Maguire has made some “horrendous mistakes” recently, and has failed to find his best form since joining Manchester United.“We were a bit slow for the first 20 minutes but they settled in and we scored some excellent goals.“That (De Gea save) was the defining moment of the game. It was one of the best saves I have ever seen. That was a big big moment for us.“He (Pogba) has got the attributes for scoring and got a few assists last game. I was very pleased for him today. Paul is the same, he loves football and loves to go forward he has a big, big smile, and I have enjoyed working with him.”
Newcastle United boss Rafa Benítez is set to rotate his squad for Saturday’s FA Cup third-round clash with Blackburn Rovers.The Magpies will host Championship side at St. James’ Park with the host set to bounce back from Wednesday’s 2-0 defeat at the hands of Manchester United.And Benítez has hinted he will give some members of his squad the chance to secure regular football when they face Tony Mowbray’s charges.Premier League Betting: Match-day 5 Stuart Heath – September 14, 2019 Going into the Premier League’s match-day five with a gap already beginning to form at the top of the league. We will take a…“For us, we have to approach the game trying to win with the best team possible that we can use, using at the same time players who have not been involved,” he told the club’s website.“They have to show something, they have to work hard, and I want to keep the good atmosphere in the dressing room.“That means that players who don’t have a chance in the Premier League, some of them will have a chance now, and they have to be ready to prove that they can play. If we go through, they can play more games, so I think it’s just the right approach at the moment.”