All in Sports

Big Changes to Come to NCAA Basketball

The NCAA’s Commission on College Basketball recommended major changes to the NCAA in an attempt to fix some major issues. The commission recommended an end to the one-and-done rule, potential lifetime bans as punishment and changes to the relationship between the NCAA and clothing companies as sponsors. The commission chairman and former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said the NCAA needs to put “college back in college basketball.” The NCAA Board of Governors and Division I Board of Directors endorsed the recommendations Wednesday. This means the NCAA will begin to craft regulation and rules. This commission was formed due to the FBI’s investigation on bribery and fraud.

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NCAA Approves Rule Change for 2018 Football Season

With player safety continuing to be a concern at all levels of football, a new rule change was approved by the NCAA Playing Rules Oversight Panel and will take effect this upcoming season.  The new rule will apply to kickoffs which often result in the most violent plays in the sport; in 2010, Rutgers player Eric LeGrand was paralyzed on a kickoff.  The new rule is meant to limit the number of kickoff returns in a game.  It will have any fair catch inside the 25-yard-line on a kickoff result in a touchback, which places the ball at the 25-yardline.  Previously, touchbacks only occurred when the ball traveled into the end zone. 

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ESPN Set to Launch Streaming Service

One week from today, ESPN will launch its first direct-to-consumer TV service, named ESPN+.  The app will offer access for fans to stream hundreds of different events from a variety of different sports including MLB, NHL, MLS, boxing, golf, tennis, and several college sports. This aggressive expansion in coverage comes during troubling times for the sports and entertainment giant over the years, having laid off hundreds of employees in the past year.  Another streaming service for Disney, Pixar, Marvel, and Lucasfilm content is in the works, and is expected to launch in some time in 2019.

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UMBC Wins in Biggest Upset Ever in NCAA Tournament

The University of Maryland- Baltimore County basketball team defeated Virginia on Friday, a feat which marks the biggest upset ever in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.  UMBC was seeded 16th in the South region and was slated to play the number one overall seed in the tournament, Virginia, when the bracket was unveiled last week.  Very few predicted they would win, and they were a 20.5 point underdog to the Cavaliers going into the game.  However, UMBC went out to an early lead and won 74-54, busting millions of brackets.  In doing so, UMBC became the first ever 16 seed to defeat a 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament.

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Dramatic Gold Medal Finish

The U.S.A. women’s hockey team won gold for the first time since 1998 on Wednesday night. The team beat Canada, the reigning Olympic champions for the past 4 Olympics, in a dramatic shootout finish. Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson scored the game winning goal in the sixth round of shootouts to put the U.S. in the lead. U.S. goalie, Maddie Rooney, made the final save, securing the win for the women's team. This win was redemptive as the U.S. team had lost in overtime four years ago to Canada. In the final minutes in Sochi, the U.S. blew their lead and lost in sudden-death overtime.

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Lindsey Vonn Becomes Oldest Female Alpine Skiing Medalist

After earning the bronze medal in the alpine skiing downhill run, Lindsey Vonn became the oldest female medalist in this category in Olympic history at age 33. Italy’s Sofia Goggia won the gold, and Norway’s Ragnhild Mowinckel won the silver medal. This is likely going to be Vonn’s final Olympic downhill run. “I wish I could keep going. I have so much fun. I love what I do, [but] my body probably can’t take another four years,” she said. Vonn previously won the gold at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics, and was not able to compete in the 2014 Sochi games after tearing ligaments in her knee. Vonn still has one more race during the PyeongChang Olympics where she will compete against Mikaela Shiffrin in the Alpine combined event.

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Fergie's Unique National Anthem

At the NBA All-Star Game Sunday night, Fergie performed a unique rendition of “The Star-Spangled Banner.” Her rendition was described as “slow” and “bluesy” by CBS News, but it didn’t receive well with the crowd in Los Angeles or on social media. Golden State Warriors player Draymond Green expressed many people’s feelings as he was show open-mouthed and confused during the vocal performance. Some critics on social media said she “butchered the song”; others just “hated it.” The crowd even chuckled after she growled on the line “the dawn’s early light.”
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Scary Crash for US Olympian

USA Olympian Emily Sweeney spun out of control and crashed during her luge run Tuesday night in Pyeongchang. Sweeney was on her fourth run and as she neared turn nine, she hit the right wall and pinballed back and forth. Sweeney tried to slow down, but eventually slid down the track with her sled right behind her. Medical personnel assisted her off the ice and took her to receive additional evaluation. The on-site doctor stated she had no broken bones but was banged up after the event. Sweeney was alert the entire time, but it is unclear if she will have to go under concussion protocol.

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Mirai Nagasu Makes History

On Tuesday, U.S. figure skater Mirai Nagasu made history when she landed the triple axel during her routine at the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics. This feat makes her the first female American skater to nail the move at the Olympics. Nagasu now becomes one of only three skaters to have ever completed the axel at the Olympics, the other two being Japanese skaters Midori Ito and Mao Asada. The triple axel is considered to be one of the most difficult moves in skating since it requires three-and-a-half rotations before landing on the opposite foot. Her routine put her in second place and helped Team USA win bronze for the ladies’ free skate event.

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