random ramblings fred riecke gamblersdata


…It’s hard enough trying to get around the guy to reach the quarterback, but how do you stop somebody who’s 6-foot-7 and 410 pounds from catching passes? That might be the task for opponents of the Baylor Bears next season, as they have LaQuan McGowan practicing at tight end and at H-back during spring practices. “His hands are about as big as my leg, so I can pretty much put it wherever, and he can snag it out of the air.”- Baylor QB Seth Russell, on teammate LaQuan McGowan. He’s even wearing a No. 80 jersey. “We’re looking at him as kind of a slot- and tight end-type of guy,” Baylor coach Art Briles told reporters Tuesday. “He can certainly help us in the run game in those situations. The way we’re looking at it is we’ve got three games in nonconference to kind of feel it out and see what he can do and teach him what to do in live action.” McGowan, who normally lined up at guard last season, proved he could handle the task during the Goodyear Cotton Bowl, when he snagged an 18-yard touchdown pass from Bryce Petty during the Bears’ 42-41 loss to Michigan State. “His hands
are about as big as my leg, so I can pretty much put it wherever, and he can snag it out of the air,” quarterback Seth Russell told reporters.

…The USA’s men’s basketball team and Jamaica’s Usain Bolt are favorites for gold medals on the lines listed for the first time Thursday as Nevada sports book wagers on the Olympics
were approved by the Nevada Gaming Commission. William Hill’s chief U.S. executive officer Joe Asher took an upbeat view of what it all may mean to the over 100 William Hill books in
Nevada. “We are excited to be the first sports book to open wagering on the summer Olympics in Brazil,” Asher said. “We look forward to continually expanding our Olympic menu in the
next 18 months leading up to the Olympics. The 2016 Olympic program will feature gold for the first time since 1904. William Hill has set the odds at 3/1 that an American will be
taking the gold medal in the men’s individual event at Reserva de Marapendi. South Point Casino owner Michael Gaughan believes basketball and soccer will probably get more of the
betting action.

…If Jameis Winston does become famous in the NFL, he’s at least putting himself in position to capitalize on it. Winston, the potential No. 1 overall NFL draft pick, has filed to
trademark “Famous Jameis,” a nickname he was given during his impressive two-year stint at Florida State, where he won a national title and a Heisman Trophy and only lost his last of
30 games as a starter. Jameis Winston has said he’s been called “Famous Jameis” since his Little League baseball days. “We have begun taking steps to protect our client and his
intellectual property rights,” said Russ Spielman, a partner of The Legacy Agency, which represents Winston. “Right now his sole focus is on football. We hope to utilize this way down
the line.” Records with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office show that The Legacy Agency filed the trademark on behalf of Winston on Feb. 5.

… A journeyman professional golfer who has spent time recently giving lessons and caddying retracted comments he made in a Friday radio interview, during which he said Tiger Woods
has been suspended for a month by the PGA Tour. Dan Olsen, 48, who last played on tour at the 2011 PGA Championship, told 730AM The Game in Lansing, Michigan, that “I heard he’s on a
month’s suspension. … It’s kind of a strong witness. It’s a credible person who is telling me this.” Both the PGA Tour and Tiger Woods’ agent have emphatically denied claims that he
has been suspended for a month by the tour. Olsen backed off Monday, telling ESPN.com’s Michael Collins that “it was only my opinion.” The tour and Woods’ agent vehemently denied
Olsen’s assertions Monday. “Everything I said on that radio interview was only my opinion and not based on any firsthand knowledge or facts,” Olsen told ESPN.com. “I want to make a
full retraction to everything I said for the entire radio interview, and I apologize to Tiger, Nike, Phil [Mickelson], [commissioner] Tim Finchem and the PGA Tour.”

…The Denver Nuggets have fired coach Brian Shaw, general manager Tim Connelly announced Tuesday. “I want to sincerely thank Brian for his time with our organization,” Connelly said
in a team release. “You won’t find a better guy than Brian and he is one of the brightest basketball minds I’ve ever been around. Unfortunately things didn’t go as we hoped, but we
know with his basketball acumen that he has a very bright future ahead of him.” Kevin Pelton analyzes the factors that led to Brian Shaw’s firing in Denver and what the next steps are
for the Nuggets. Melvin Hunt, one of Shaw’s assistants, will serve as interim coach. Hunt is in his fifth season with Denver after five seasons as a Cleveland Cavaliers assistant
coach. The timing of the dismissal was somewhat surprising given that just last week Connelly seemed to signal Shaw’s job was safe at least through the end of the season. The Nuggets
have played almost as though they have given up recently which didn’t boost Scott’s position.

…NFL rushing champion DeMarco Murray would likely return to the Dallas Cowboys if the team’s offer is equal or financially similar to those he receives from other teams as an
unrestricted free agent, league sources told ESPN NFL Insider Ed Werder on Tuesday. With quality teams potentially looking for a starting running back, Murray is expecting a “vigorous”
free-agent market. DeMarco Murray led the NFL — and set the Cowboys’ single-season record — with 1,845 rushing yards last season. Murray, 27, made $1.4 million last season, which
ranked 23rd among running backs. Adrian Peterson is the highest-paid running back at $12.75 million. Murray led the NFL in rushing with 1,845 yards on 392 carries in 2014. He also
scored 13 touchdowns and set career highs in receptions (57) and receiving yards (416).

…Curt Schilling wrote a proud papa tweet about his daughter being accepted to college and getting to continue to play softball, which she’s played for years. Anyone who is a parent —
or anyone who had great, proud parents — have had or have been the recipient of those sorts of feelings before and can certainly relate. Sadly, a few sick idiots decided it was somehow
appropriate to respond with awful, violent and sexually-explicit tweets about Schilling’s daughter. Rape threats and the like. So Schilling took to his blog to call such crap behavior
out. And not just to complain, but to identify the jerks saying such things and to display their tweets. His efforts had results: one of the guys tweeting rape threats and other awful
things was fired from a part time job he had as a ticket seller for the Yankees. Another one now has local police investigating his tweets to see if a crime occurred. I can’t say that
I blame Schilling at all.

…You will want to mark this on your calendar and start putting aside some money right now. Fukushima, the site of 2011 nuclear plant meltdowns caused by an earthquake and tsunami,
hopes to host preliminary baseball and softball games for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, according to Agence France-Presse. “We are still in the process of recovery from the disaster, and it
would be a dream to have world-class athletes play here,” said Fukushima city official Hiroaki Kuwajima, according to AFP. The Fukushima meltdowns were a cause of concern as Tokyo bid
for the 2020 Olympics in 2013. It won an International Olympic Committee vote over Istanbul and Madrid and will host its second Games, 56 years after its first. In the 2013 question-
and-answer session with IOC members, Tokyo organizers were asked about a leak of radiation-contaminated water at the Fukushima nuclear plant. At the time, it marked the fifth and
largest leak from the plant damaged by the 2011 tsunami. There were concerns over possible radiation effects, but Kuwajima cited “harmful rumors,” and Fukushima hopes athletes will eat
the local food, according to AFP. Yeah, right!

…Evidenly things move rather slowly at BYU. The last we heard out of BYU regarding the ugly incident at the end of the Miami Beach Bowl against Memphis, BYU was not expected to
release names of players serving suspensions or facing discipline for their role in a postgame melee in Miami. That has not changed, although BYU head coach Bronco Mendenhall has
suggested the number of players facing some form of discipline will be in the double digits. According to a report by Desert News, Mendenhall opened BYU’s spring practice by writing
the word “discipline” on the whiteboard. The head coach of the Cougars later told reporters “10-ish” players will be disciplined for their actions following a bowl loss to Memphis.
Specific suspensions may not be announced until the week of BYU’s season opener at Nebraska. At least no one can call this a rush to judgment.

…Nevada’s Supreme Court decided to rule against an appeal by a gambler who says that he didn’t commit a felony when failing to repay the money casinos loaned him to gamble with.
California ice cream businessman Harel Zahavi was convicted in 2011 of defrauding the Venetian, the Palazzo, Hard Rock and Caesars Palace out of $384,000 in total. Specifically, he was
said to have “passed bad checks.” The crimes were felonies, and he originally was sentenced to one to four years in prison, in addition to fines. His sentence was eventually changed to
four years of probation, in addition to repaying the money. Attorneys for Zahavi argued Nevada was punishing debtors with prison, which is in violation of the U.S. Constitution. They
maintain he didn’t defraud the casinos. The defense also argued that the casinos knew he couldn’t repay and that he had a gambling addiction. There was testimony that he did tell a
casino he was broke and owed money across town, but he was still given more money to play with. The documents he signed did have fine print that warned Nevada casinos could pursue not
just civil but criminal charges if he failed to repay the markers. In his defense, Zahavi said his English wasn’t strong enough to read this information.

…At the moment, it doesn’t look like there is a woman on the planet who could get the best of Ronda Rousey inside the octagon. Rousey is 11-0 in her MMA career. She disposed of her
most recent opponent in just 14 seconds, which was a world record. UFC analyst Joe Rogan believes Rousey could do the same to a lot of male fighters. “There’s a lot of guys her size
she could beat,” Rogan told ESPN’s Dan Le Batard last week, as transcribed by David St. Martin of MMAfighting.com. “I mean, a lot. If you took the roster of the UFC’s bantamweights,
135 pounds, and you paired them up against Ronda Rousey, she might be able to beat 50 percent of them. That’s not a joke.” And if you think that was a knee-jerk reaction to watching
Rousey hardly break a sweat against Cat Zingano, it wasn’t. Rogan made his comments before that fight. I don’t doubt it for a second.

…Add Rogan on Rousey – The reason Rogan doesn’t believe Rousey could defeat even more men in her weight class is simply biology and has nothing to do with skill. “The ability to take
punches is a significant difference,” he added. “The structure of the face, the muscles in the neck. Women just cannot take the same kind of punches that men can. That’s the only
reason why I only give Ronda a chance at beating 50 percent of the men. If she could take the kind of punches that some of these guys might possibly land it might get up to like 60
percent. She’s a truly special talent.”

…Final add Rousey – After her latest Octagon triumph in which she armbarred Cat Zingano in just 14 seconds at UFC 184 this past weekend, UFC woman’s bantamweight champion Ronda
Rousey is now headed back to Hollywood to star in another movie. Rousey will star in ‘Mile 22′, a new film produced by Peter Berg who previously directed the hit action movie, ‘Lone
Survivor’ which will also star ‘The Raid’ and ‘The raid II’ actor Iko Uwais. At UFC 184’s post-fight press conference on Saturday night UFC president Dana White had revealed that
Rousey would take on a movie project next before her next UFC fight, though he didn’t reveal what it was. “We had a deal that she was going to go do a movie after this fight. So when
she’s done with her movie, we will talk,” White told reporters. Rousey already has a good deal of acting experience under her belt with a role in ‘The Expendables 3′ last year and
upcoming blockbusters like ‘Furious 7′ and ‘Entourage’.

…Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, also a “shark” investor on the hit ABC show, has been cast as the President of the United States in Syfy’s Sharknado 3. While you try to
comprehend that, also consider that conservative pundit Ann Coulter will be playing his vice president. Hopefully, we see those two in a situation room type of situation. If the
Sharknado 3 screenwriters haven’t written that scene yet, consider that free advice. The action in Sharknado 3 takes place in Washington, D.C., which is presumably why the president
would be involved. Although after the third one of these shark storm events, you’d think the White House would be keeping a close eye on such natural disasters. Joining Cuban and
Coulter in the Sharknado 3 cast are franchise stars Ian Ziering and Tara Reid, along with Bo Derek, Jerry Springer, Chris Kirkpatrick, Chris Jericho and possibly some others who are
too embarrassed to be named just yet. This whole thing will attack your televisions and Twitter feeds in late July.

…J.J. Redick was ejected during the final two minutes of the Los Angeles’ Clippers win over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Monday night. With the way Redick makes it sound, T-Wolves
coach Flip Saunders should have been the one who was given the boot. Redick told reporters after the game that he got into it with Saunders after a foul call late in the fourth
quarter. Flip had apparently made his way onto the court, and he and Redick wound up being given matching technical fouls. “I think there was a foul on the play, and I was just kind of
walking to get to my spot on the free throw line, and Flip was out on the court,” Redick explained, via Arash Markazi of ESPNLosAngeles.com. “I’m not sure why he was out on the court,
but he was yelling and stuff, so I said to the ref, ‘Man, get him off the court.’ And Flip turned to me and said, ‘Man, shut the f— up.’ And he said it like three times, and I just
walked to my spot, and I got a double technical for that. So I shouldn’t have kept talking, but all I said to Josh [Tiven] was, ‘I’m going to get my money back,’ and he threw me out
for that.

…The Major League Baseball Players Association sprang to the defense of Los Angeles Angels outfielder Josh Hamilton on Thursday, issuing a statement critical of news leaks that it
calls “cowardly” and intended to hurt Hamilton “personally and professionally.” The MLBPA has come to the defense of Josh Hamilton and called out “cowardly” leaks.
“It is regrettable that people who want to see Josh Hamilton hurt personally and professionally have started leaking information about the status of his treatment program and the
confidential processes under our Joint Drug Agreement,” said the union statement. “These anonymous leaks are cowardly, undermine the integrity of our collectively bargained agreements
and in some instances have been wholly inaccurate. “The Major League Baseball Players Association will use every right we have under the collective bargaining agreement to make sure
Josh gets the help he needs, and the fair and confidential process to which he is entitled.”

…The decision about whether Los Angeles Angels left fielder Josh Hamilton should enter rehabilitation will be made by an arbitrator after a four-person disciplinary committee
deadlocked, a source told the Los Angeles Times. Hamilton suffered a drug relapse involving the use of cocaine and alcohol in the offseason, according to an ESPN source and media
reports, and met last week with Major League Baseball officials in New York. The commissioner’s office and the MLB Players Association each appointed a lawyer and a physician to the
committee, which determines whether the drug policy was violated and a course of treatment, according to the Times report. An arbitrator’s decision on whether Josh Hamilton should
enter rehab also will affect the $25 million he is owed this season, the Los Angeles Times reported. The committee deadlocked on the course of treatment, necessitating the involvement
of the arbitrator, the source told the Times. On Friday, a source told ESPN’s Tim Keown that Hamilton’s relapse involved alcohol and a one-time use of cocaine, and that when Hamilton
realized a drug test, which is administered three times a week, would come out positive, he self-reported his relapse.

… It took nearly 18 months for Alex Rodriguez to get back on a baseball field — and just one at-bat to get back into the swing of things with a single his first time up in
Wednesday’s spring training game between the Yankees and the Philadelphia Phillies at Steinbrenner Field. A-Rod finished his day 1-for-2 with a walk and left the game in the sixth
inning, having turned a mixed early greeting to cheers by the time he was done. “I was happy I just made contact, and I was pleasantly surprised it was a base hit,” Rodriguez said of
his first plate appearance of the spring. “I was a little nervous. I told [plate umpire Marty Foster] to take it easy on the old man — it’s been a long time since I’ve been in the

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