random ramblings fred riecke, gamblersdata

kosta k

…The Columbus Police announced in a press conference on Sunday that the body of missing Ohio State football player Kosta Karageorge was found. Karageorge’s body was found in a dumpster near his apartment around 2 p.m. Sunday afternoon. The spokesperson for the Columbus Police said it appears Karageorge died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Early Wednesday morning, Karageorge went missing after leaving his apartment to take a walk. Karageorge was a walk-on defensive lineman playing in one game, and was acknowledged during Senior Day prior to Saturday’s game against Michigan. Following the game, head coach Urban Meyer had a message for Karageorge telling him to, “Just come home, man.” “He’s only been with us since August, so I don’t know him well, but I talked to his mom a couple times,” Meyer said. “You need your strength on the team, and I know there have been a lot of prayers on the team.” On Wednesday morning at 1:30 a.m. Karageorge texted his mother Susan Karageorge saying, “I am sorry if I am an embarrassment.” in a message that mentioned several concussions he had dealt with recently, and according to the police report, had led to some bouts of confusion. The Ohio State University Department of Athletics released this statement following the news on Sunday. “The Ohio State University Department of Athletics was shocked and saddened to learn today of the death of student-athlete Kosta Karageorge, a senior from Columbus. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Karageorge family, and those who knew him, during this most difficult time.” (See ‘Columns” for further information)

…Concussions? Self inflicted gunshot wound? Haven’t we heard this story before?

…I’m surprised that so little was written on this. I guess it’s same ol’ same ol’. Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston remains the most talked-about college football player in America, for good and for ill, and today he’s added another item that will be recited on the “con” side of the ledger in the NFL draft. During Florida State’s win over Boston College, Winston moved an official aside as Florida State was trying to get a play run while the official was allowing Boston College’s defense to substitute. It wasn’t a hard shove and Winston wasn’t penalized, but former NFL head of officiating Mike Pereira says that Winston should have been kicked out of the game. “I’ve looked at this play several times, and in my opinion, Winston should have been penalized for shoving Webster not once, but twice. In fact, I feel he should have been ejected,” Pereira says. Taken alone, this wouldn’t be a big deal as teams evaluate Winston for the draft. In fact, if a player with a clean image (like the other top quarterback prospect in next year’s draft, Oregon’s Marcus Mariota) did the same thing, people would probably say it just shows what a fiery competitor he is. But when it’s Winston — who always seems to find a way for his behavior to overshadow his brilliant play — it raises questions once again about whether NFL teams will worry that the headaches he creates are too much to tolerate. Winston is a great college quarterback, but one whom a lot of NFL teams may view as the last person they want to be the face of their franchise.

…Lane Kiffin is Ed Orgeron is Steve Sarkisian. Jim Mora is Jim Mora. If USC hopes to beat UCLA anytime soon, those match ups need to be changed. Or USC can hope that Mora goes pro. UCS outplayed and outcoached by the Bruins 3 years in a row.

…Texas Rangers prospect Ronald Guzman was involved in a fatal car wreck this week in the Dominican Republic, his agent confirmed Friday. The 20-year-old’s car was hit by a motorcyclist in his hometown of La Vega on Tuesday, according to a Mejia said his client was detained and later released by authorities after posting a $13,500 deposit. Guzman is not currently facing charges but is barred from leaving the country pending an appeal, Jeff Wilson of the Star-Telegram reports. Local authorities have six months to complete the investigation and have ordered Guzman to remain in the country. Guzman was ranked the 17th-best prospect in the Rangers organization by MLB.com earlier this year.

…It’s a good thing he didn’t play in Philly. Bills fans must be a different breed. Buffalo Bills fans are rallying to support Darryl Talley after the team’s former star linebacker revealed he is dealing with depression and experiencing financial difficulties. As of noon Monday, more than 3,000 contributors have donated nearly $139,000 on a fundraising website set up to assist Talley and his family. Frank Croisdale is overwhelmed by the response since establishing the campaign (http://www.gofundme.com/hvkgjo# ) on Thanksgiving Day. He’s a long-time Bills fan who was spurred to action after reading about Talley’s troubles in a story published by The Buffalo News. Talley says he experiences memory loss and has contemplated suicide in what he considered to be side effects from his 14-season career. He is also having difficulty making ends meet after the company he owned was forced to close during the 2008 financial crisis.

…The NFL has denied requests from the St. Louis Police Officers Association to discipline a group of St. Louis Rams players who made the “Hands up, don’t shoot” gesture while taking the field on Sunday, according to CNN’s Rachel Nichols. “We respect and understand the concerns of all individuals who have expressed views on this tragic situation,” NFL Vice President of Communications Brian McCarthy said in a statement. The police association released a statement in which it called for “the players involved to be disciplined and for the Rams and the NFL to deliver a very public apology.” The organization was incensed when five Rams players — Tavon Austin, Stedman Bailey, Kenny Britt, Chris Givens and Jared Cook — held up their hands in what has become a well-known sign of support for the Ferguson, Mo. community grappling with the shooting of Michael Brown by police officer Darren Wilson. F”I know that there are those that will say that these players are simply exercising their First Amendment rights,” SLPOA business manager Jeff Roorda is quoted as saying in the release. “Well I’ve got news for people who think that way, cops have first amendment rights too, and we plan to exercise ours. I’d remind the NFL and their players that it is not the violent thugs burning down buildings that buy their advertiser’s products. It’s cops and the good people of St. Louis and other NFL towns that do. Somebody needs to throw a flag on this play. If it’s not the NFL and the Rams, then it’ll be cops and their supporters.”

…How did super-talented Percy Harvin manage to alienate his Super Bowl champion employer, the Seattle Seahawks, so much so fast that he got himself exiled to the New York Jets–known in the NFL as Siberia? NFL writer Mike Freeman thinks he did the one thing you can’t do–he disrespected his quarterback. Freeman knows the league and can reference countless stories where this act of civil disobedience got a player pushed out. He mentions the 2005 Eagles, where the ever confrontational Terrell Owens wasn’t properly subordinate to quarterback Donovan McNabb. See ya, Terrell. Freeman quotes an ex-Eagle as saying: “If someone is talking bad about your quarterback, they [have] to go. Period.” Russell Wilson is the quarterback in Seattle and he’s the team’s future

…Urban Meyer admitted that he made mistakes as coach at Florida in an interview with Andrea Kremer for HBO’s Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel. Now in his third season at Ohio State, Meyer and his wife, Shelley, spoke about the 31 player arrests during his tenure in Gainesville as well as former Gator tight end Aaron Hernandez, who is awaiting two murder trials since becoming one of Tom Brady’s go-to targets for the New England Patriots. The Patriots released him after he was charged with murder. “We did make mistakes,” Meyer said of his time at Florida, which included winning two BCS national titles. “If I look back now, the biggest mistake I probably gave second chances to some people that maybe shouldn’t. But this is someone’s son. I know in my soul we’re doing it right, doing the best we can. Did we make mistakes? We make mistakes.” When asked about Hernandez, Meyer responded: “I don’t think anybody ever dreamed of this, myself included,” Meyer said. “He had a positive drug test and sat out a game (at Florida). We knew that every time he went home — and that was a concern of mine — every time he would go to Connecticut, I’d have players on my team say ‘watch this guy, watch when he comes back,’ so I would visit with him. He was knee deep in our family now because he was so emotionally when he lost his dad.”

…Aaron Hernandez may be running out of money to pay his lawyers, partly because of the bonus money the Patriots are trying not to pay him, according to a Fox Sports report. Two of Hernandez’s attorneys, Charles Rankin and James Sultan, have filed papers with the court indicating they may not continue to represent the former tight end, now charged with three murders in Massachusetts, FoxSports.com reported Friday. Rankin and Sultan represented Hernandez in Wednesday’s arraignment in Suffolk County on double-murder charges. However, in their filing, they said their representation was “limited to arraignment only and related proceedings.” “The defendant is in the process of seeking to make financial arrangements to retain counsel,” Rankin and Sultan said in their filing, adding a request that Hernandez be given 60 days to complete them and notify the court.” Michael Fee, who also has represented him, was not part of the notice to the court. Hernandez was due $12.5 million in bonus money from the contract extension he signed in 2012 — just months after two Boston men were killed in a drive-by shooting, allegedly by Hernandez. A grievance over whether the Patriots can recoup some of all of that money is pending. Also, the story reports, his North Attleboro, Mass., home is under a restraining order preventing him from using it for anything other than paying future judgments in potential civil suits.

…If Daniel Snyder wants advice about his football team’s nickname, he can get it from all corners. There are those standing fast in his corner; there are those railing against him and his insistence on keeping the Washington Redskins team name as is. There’s another opinion offered Dallas Cowboys Hall of Fame running back, Emmitt Smith. As heated as the rivalry between these two storied franchises is, Smith actually sympathizes with Snyder and has an idea about what steps he should take. “I think it’s unfortunate because Daniel Snyder bought the Redskins because of the Redskins value and the Redskins brand,” Smith told Sporting News. “Now you take that from him, it’s gonna be very tough because he loses some of that value. “But if he can just drop the Red and keep the Skins, I think that part would suffice. Drop the Red and keep the Skins, keep the Indian logo and keep it moving, make the adjustment. You don’t have to change the colors. People know them as the ‘Skins anyway. The brand has been completely established; don’t lose it all trying to fight the overall battle. Take the one thing that will make you successful and that part is the ‘Skins and no one can question that.” That actually makes sense to me!

…More Cowboy news here. Brennan Clay and DeMarco Murray briefly shared the same field as running backs at Oklahoma. According to Clay, that’s not all they shared.Clay tweeted Sunday that the Cowboys running back had an affair with his wife, pointing out that Murray has a child with girlfriend Heidi Mueller, and that Clay’s wife has two children. No word on how he found out the information or if it’s still going on.

…Phillip Hughes has died from head injuries suffered on Tuesday when he was hit in the head by a bouncer at the SCG, Cricket Australia has announced. The Australian cricketer underwent brain surgery and has been has been in an induced coma in Sydney’s St Vincent’s Hospital. Hughes did not respond to treatment and was pronounced dead on Thursday, stunning a cricket world that had rallied behind him since the terrible incident. “It is my sad duty to inform you that a short time ago Phillip Hughes passed away,” said CA doctor Peter Brukner in a statement. “He never regained consciousness following his injury on Tuesday. He was not in pain before he passed and was surrounded by his family and close friends. As a cricket community we mourn his loss and extend our deepest sympathies to Phillip’s family and friends at this incredibly sad time. Cricket Australia kindly asks that the privacy of the Hughes family, players and staff be respected.”

…JJ What??? Not since 1986 has someone on the defensive side of the ball been named the NFL’s most valuable player. But Houston’s JJ Watt is making a strong case to win it this year. Last week against the Titans, Watt had two sacks and six quarterback hits. On offense Watt lined up as fullbackand shifted to tight end where he caught his 3rd touchdown pass of the season. Watt is the only player in NFL history with three touchdown catches, an interception return for a touchdown and a fumble recovery touchdown all in the same season. So why not give Watt a try at the QB spot so he can throw for one too?

…A lack of talent isn’t keeping Michael Sam out of the NFL. But being gay might be. The first openly gay football player drafted by an NFL team intimated that that was the case when TMZ caught up with him Wednesday morning at LAX. “I think I was the SEC Defensive Player of the Year last year,” Sam cryptically told the gossip website when he was quizzed about why he’s not in the league, “… so I don’t think it had to do with talent.” Sam, who was among the final cuts by the Rams during the preseason, spent seven weeks on the practice squad of the Cowboys. He was released on Oct. 21. “While this is disappointing, I will take the lessons I learned here in Dallas and continue to fight for an opportunity to prove that I can play every Sunday,” the defensive end said at the time.

…Despite his collegiate credentials as a star in the top conference in the country, most NFL experts blamed his size – and not the fact that he was gay – as the reason he wasn’t drafted until late in the seventh and final round by the Rams (249 out of the 256 players picked). “If Sam had not come out as gay in February, he probably would have been a fourth- or fifth-round pick. He’s not big enough to be a pass-rushing force at defensive end, and not quick, fast or agile enough to be a pass rusher at outside linebacker or cover backs in space. That has nothing to do with his sexual orientation.”

…Final Add Michael Sam – if you are good enough, you will play in the NFL regardless of your sexual orientation or your criminal pasts. Ain’t that right Ray Lewis, Pac Man Jones, et al.?

…A loud Brooklyn Nets fan was carried from his MSG seats Tuesday night kicking and screaming… sort of. There was plenty of commotion in the upper deck with around five minutes to play in the third quarter of Brooklyn’s 98-93 win over the Knicks as a man with one leg was yanked from his seats – sans his prosthetic limb. According to a pair of Garden security guards who declined to be identified, the man pulled off his prosthetic leg and hit another fan with it, inciting a ruckus in the upper deck. “They grabbed him and pulled him out,” the staffer said. “I don’t know if he was arrested but they got him out of there so he didn’t start a riot.” Huh?

…The NFL is investigating why Tony Romo has not been on the Dallas Cowboys’ injury report with a rib injury the quarterback claimed he has played with for nearly two months, league spokesman Brian McCarthy confirmed to ESPN. Romo said after Thursday night’s 41-28 win against the Chicago Bears that he was playing with a broken rib. However, multiple sources say Romo misspoke and that he had torn rib cartilage, not a break. The quarterback said he was unsure when he suffered the rib injury, but a source said it came when he took a big hit from Seattle Seahawks linebacker Bobby Wagner in the first series of the Cowboys’ 30-23 win Oct. 12. Romo did not miss a snap in that game. According to the NFL’s injury report policy, “All players with significant or noteworthy injuries must be listed on the report, even if the player takes all the reps in practice, and even if the team is certain that he will play in the upcoming game.” A team is subject to a fine if the league finds it did not comply with its injury report rules. In 2009, the New York Jets were assessed $125,000 in fines for failing to put quarterback Brett Favre on the injury report after he revealed he played the final month of the 2008 season with a torn biceps tendon.

…The technical foul Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban claimed was called on him — but officially assessed to assistant coach Monte Mathis — has been rescinded by the NBA, head coach Rick Carlisle said. Mark Cuban can’t be called for a technical because he doesn’t sit on the bench but he has racked up more than $1 million in fines. The NBA office has not commented on the technical foul, which was called by referee Nick Buchert with 10:30 remaining in the third quarter of the Mavs’ 107-105 win Wednesday over the Milwaukee Bucks. According to Cuban and Carlisle, it was a comment from the Mavs’ owner that drew the referee’s ire. However, Cuban is not eligible to be called for a technical foul because he doesn’t sit on the Mavs’ bench. Cuban believes Buchert recognized his mistake and attempted to mask it by calling the technical on Mathis. “It was ridiculous,” Cuban said Friday. “They knew it, and the ref came up to Monte after the fact and said, ‘Sorry, I’ll send a note.'” Cuban, who has been assessed fines totaling more than $1 million for public criticism of officiating, said the call was in response to mild feedback from him after he felt a foul should have been called on a Bucks defender. He said he did not curse or say anything inflammatory.

…Movie star Edward Norton appeared on the “Late Show with David Letterman” last month to promote his new film “Birdman,” but he actually got started with the interview talking about the poker cult classic “Rounders,” which could one day, hopefully, have a sequel. Norton told Letterman: “I think there is a possibility of it. Yeah, we couldn’t have had more fun making that movie. That was one of the best gangs of people ever. We did it right on the cusp of what became kind of the resurgence of the poker phenomenon. Matt and I talked later…we should have negotiated like a five-percent rake on every poker pot that was played after that. Then we could have made the [follow-up] film with our money!”

…Mike Florio reports news on the Adrian Peterson case which, if possible, can only make the NFL look worse. The hearing ended Thursday with the testimony of NFL executive V.P. of football operations Troy Vincent. By rule, a decision must be made by Harold Henderson “as soon as practicable.” But that doesn’t mean the NFL and NFL Players Association can’t still work something out on their own. Per a source with knowledge of the situation, a settlement of Peterson’s unpaid suspension under the personal conduct policy remains possible. Obviously, however, a settlement would have to be reached before Henderson issues a ruling. Henderson likely will be monitoring any settlement talks before he decides the case. He already has urged the two sides to work something out, which means he’d prefer not to issue a ruling. While the NFL would have realized maximum value by settling the case before Vincent testified, a settlement now would avoid the possibility of another written decision that makes the NFL look bad.

…It’s becoming more and more difficult to see how the Robert Griffin III era in Washington can continue after this season. Griffin was benched a couple of weeks ago in favor of Colt McCoy, and while reports indicated the Redskins haven’t given up on RG3 just yet, a TMZ Sports report Saturday morning indicates the locker room might indicate otherwise. An anonymous Redskins teammates reportedly ripped into Griffin when talking to TMZ. “No one is happy … no one gets the hype around him anymore,” the teammate reportedly told TMZ Sports. Griffin’s play has been abysmal — he’s thrown for just two touchdowns and three interceptions in five games this season — but his issues extend off the field, too, according to this teammate. “He’s secluded and it affects us in the game,” the teammate told TMZ. “We don’t have that real rapport. He’s lost confidence and is complacent now.” The teammate also wondered if Griffin would even remain in the NFL for much longer, indicating RG3 might be interested in getting into politics before too long.

…To say that the Washington Redskins fan base is a little fed up would be an understatement. The team is now 3-9 on the season and is 6-22 since a surprising playoff campaign back in 2012. If you wanted evidence of a group of fans that really isn’t prepared to support this current product, there is no reason to look further than the ticket prices for Washington’s upcoming home outing against the St. Louis Rams. Yes, that’s standing-room only tickets selling for as low as $1.00 on Ticketcity.com. In terms of seats that you can actually sit in, those are going for as low at $6.00 on StubHub.com.

…Jayson Werth’s lead foot has earned him a jail sentence. The Washington Nationals outfielder was sentenced to 10 days in jail for after being found guilty of reckless driving. Werth was pulled over in Virginia by police and clocked going 50 mph over the speed limit. NBC Washington reported Werth also lost his drivers’ license as part of the sentencing. Virginia is notoriously strict when it comes to speeding violations. Werth reportedly was going 105 mph in a 55 mph zone. The Virginia state trooper who pulled Werth over even pulled his gun upon approaching Werth’s car. Unsurprisingly, Werth’s attorney said he’ll appeal the ruling.

 

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