The WildCard Winner Is The Team To Beat In The NL

On Tuesday, I previewed the American League playoffs, and today, it’s the National League’s turn. Compared to the AL, the NL playoffs are much more chaotic. Judging by the teams’ run differentials, there are no clear tiers, as there were in the AL. The preseason consensus pick for NL champion (the Washington Nationals) didn’t make the dance, and the three best teams in the NL all play in the same division (the NL Central), which means that two of them will have to face each other in a wild-card play-in game. One of the NL’s foremost contenders is doomed to sit out the remainder of October.1Living in Chicago, I’m not bitter or anything. Do I seem bitter? I’m not bitter. Whoever survives, though, will have the best chance of winning the World Series of any NL team.2The Cubs and Pirates chances are lower than the other teams’ for now, but once one of them is out of the way, the winner’s odds will essentially double because the coin-flip nature of the wild-card game is behind it.As if that wasn’t enough, it’s hard to evaluate two division champions that have seen unusual bouts of good and bad luck, which are unlikely to persist in the playoffs. And the two most surprising contenders (the New York Mets and Chicago Cubs) have ridden incredible waves of young talent into the postseason, waves that may or may not have already crested.So there are no world-beaters, like the Toronto Blue Jays. There is only entropy. As the field stands going into tonight’s wild-card game, the most likely National League team to win the World Series (the St. Louis Cardinals) has only a slightly better chance than it would if we awarded the Series by picking a team at random. Come the divisional series, there will be eight teams left, and the Cardinals barely have a better than 1 in 8 shot of winning it all. Chicago Cubs(Chance of winning the World Series: 7 percent)The Cubs are the second-youngest team in the postseason (when you weight the team’s age by its players’ production), coming in at an average of 25.6 years, just a smidge over the Houston Astros.3Who have an average weighted age of 25.5. That’s important because MLB is in the midst of a surge in youth production. The shape of baseball’s aging curve seems to be changing — young players are becoming better earlier and old guys are falling off faster.You can see that in the accuracy of projections: Players 25 and younger outperformed their projected wins above replacement by a grand total of 43.6 WAR.4Using Steamer projections from FanGraphs. Older players fell short by a nearly equal margin (44.7). These systematic errors in our predictions suggest that teams like the Cubs and Astros, who rely on green talent like Kris Bryant and Carlos Correa, may be better than we think. In addition, because some of that talent was called up in the middle of the season (e.g., Kyle Schwarber), this Cubs team is better than its full-year run differential suggests.But that potential won’t mean anything if they can’t get past the Pittsburgh Pirates in a one-game playoff that’s rigged to be random.Pittsburgh Pirates(Chance of winning the World Series: 8 percent)Like the Cubs, the Pirates have a tough road to the divisional series. That’s because the wild-card games are so unforgiving. Tonight, it’ll be the Cubs’ Jake Arrieta, owner of one of the most incredible second-half performances in major league history (and the same Jake Arrieta whose path to ace status has been very, very strange), versus the Pirates’ Gerrit Cole, who has one of the most electric fastballs in baseball. Arrieta has the edge.But Pittsburgh is playing at home, which is worth a few percentage points of win probability. Whether that cancels out the advantage in starting pitching partially depends on how much you believe in Arrieta. If he’s as good as his second-half ERA suggests, the Pirates may not have much of a chance. But pitching is a volatile alchemy; on a slightly off night, when batted balls find a few extra holes, Cole might be Arrieta’s equal.There are dozens of potential factors that could influence the outcome of this one game, ranging from temperature to manager skill, but let’s not fool ourselves. As hard as it is to predict a five- or seven-game series, attempting to forecast the outcome of any single game between nearly evenly matched teams is as close as you can come to a coin flip in sports. Anything can happen.New York Mets(Chance of winning the World Series: 9 percent)It’s difficult to talk about the Mets’ unexpected playoff run without invoking the name of their chief rival in the NL East, the Nationals. The Nationals suffered a well-documented collapse for somewhat mysterious reasons, which left the door open for the Mets squad to take the lead. The Mets seized on the opportunity, albeit not without some drama.The Mets come into the playoffs with mixed indications of how they’ll do. On the one hand, they had the easiest schedule of any playoff team, beating up on the Phillies, Braves, Marlins and the eviscerated shell of the Nationals. On the other hand, the Mets have excellent young starting pitchers who throw very hard (more than 20 percent of their pitches are faster than 95 mph, which leads the league). Hitters are extra vulnerable to high velocity pitching in the playoffs, so the Mets should have an advantage in October. This postseason is probably a year too early for the Mets to make a strong run at the championship (same for the Texas Rangers), but don’t let that diminish the joy of seeing Bartolo Colon potentially work his magic.Los Angeles Dodgers(Chance of winning the World Series: 12 percent)The numbers suggest that the Dodgers may be better than they appear. The Dodgers had the fourth-worst cluster luck in baseball this year, doing a terrible job of stringing together their hits and walks to maximize their run scoring. The good news is that there’s no reason to believe such poor clustering will continue into October.The Dodgers have a top of the rotation that is the envy of every team in baseball, with two potential Cy Young contenders in Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke. Kershaw has had his troubles in the playoffs before, but like the Dodgers’ cluster luck, such struggles are unlikely to persist. On paper, then, the Dodgers remain one of the World Series favorites, hampered only by potentially inefficient managing and a mediocre bullpen.St. Louis Cardinals(Chance of winning the World Series: 13 percent)These 2015 Cardinals are doing something we don’t understand: Over the course of the year, their pitching staff stranded baserunners at a rate (79.4 percent) that has rarely been seen in MLB history. As a consequence, the Cardinals have won about six or seven more games5The Cardinals received a net of 62.8 runs from their cluster luck. Using the standard exchange rate between runs and wins (between 9.5 and 10 runs per win), that’s about six or seven wins. than we would have expected, given the skill of their pitching staff. It’s tempting to call that all luck, but this isn’t the first time the Cardinals have found their way into historic bouts of run-clustering or prevention.But even if you take away the luck, this Cards squad is a good one. It has solid pitching, both in rotation and in relief, and a steady lineup getting contributions from younger players. The one gaping hole is at catcher; Yadier Molina, St. Louis’s erstwhile X factor, may be out with an injury. Depending on how much of the Cardinals’ incredible pitching performance is determined by Molina, the Cardinals could be in deep trouble or still in line for a championship.Read more:The Blue Jays Are The Best — And There’s An 80 Percent Chance They Won’t WinThe Best 2015 MLB Teams, According To Our New Ratings read more

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Philip Rivers Has The Supporting Cast He Deserves Again

BUF52%HOU60%HOU 20, BUF 13+9.4– Game quality is the harmonic mean of the Elo ratings for the two teams in a given matchup.*Average change is weighted by the likelihood of a win or loss. (Ties are excluded.)Source: ESPN.com It probably isn’t a coincidence that Rivers is currently enjoying his best statistical performance in years, with Gordon and Allen also contributing more than any Charger rusher and receiver since the days of LaDainian Tomlinson and Vincent Jackson. It’s a little circular, in that sense: Is Rivers making them better, or are they helping Rivers rediscover his form? (Gordon’s ability to run against stacked defenses, for instance, has opened up space for Rivers to throw downfield.) Either way, the ingredients have been in place for a late-career QB rejuvenation. Right now, Rivers is on pace to tie for the ninth-most-efficient post-merger performance for a passer age 35 or older, according to Pro-Football-Reference.com’s advanced passing index. As far as old-man QB seasons go, this is one of the best in history.Of course, with the Chargers, it’s about more than just improved talent. It’s also about execution, something this team has often been found sorely lacking over the years. As Mike Tanier wrote in his L.A. chapter for Football Outsiders’ 2018 Almanac, you could make a pretty convincing case that the 2017 Chargers missed the playoffs because of two very fundamental football activities: tackling and kicking. Last year, Los Angeles let opponents break tackles at an incredible rate and missed numerous field goals and extra points, helping to turn a team with 10-and-a-half-win point differential into a sad-sack nine-game-winner.This year’s place-kicking game hasn’t been great (Caleb Sturgis made just 71 percent of his total field goals and extra points before he was sidelined by an injury), but it’s no longer dead-last in football, which I suppose is an accomplishment. Plus, the Chargers rank among the best in the league in terms of kickoffs, a big reason for their fourth-ranked net starting field position. And as for the tackling woes, they appear to be a thing of the past. According to Football Outsiders’ charting data, only 3.9 percent of plays by Charger opponents have seen a broken tackle, good for 10th best in the league this year. Relatedly, the Chargers are also allowing the league’s sixth-lowest rate of yards after first contact per rush this season, another major sign of defensive progress as compared with last season. NYJ67NYJ57NYJ 42, IND 34-9.9– 201775.1M. Gordon98.8K. Allen87.663.0 LAC69LAC60LAC 38, CLE 14-9.1– MIA42.812.6DET24.39.822.41496 200997.0L. Tomlinson55.3V. Jackson73.646.4 201899.2M. Gordon124.2K. Allen80.054.9 LAC60.614.6TEN41.312.627.21524 CAR43.4%±12.8PHI64.2%±12.225.01586 201713.3312.3132 The Chargers must have practiced their tacklingLos Angeles Chargers’ defensive performance and league ranking in preventing opponents from breaking tackles or gaining yards after contact 20183.9%101.566 OUR PREDICTION (ELO)READERS’ PREDICTION CHI43.012.2NE78.49.021.31560 Team ACurrentAvg. Chg*Team BCurrentAvg. Chg*Total ChangeGame Quality What’s been a great season for Elo kept getting better in Week 6 as the algorithm beat the average reader by 55 points, its second-best showing of the entire year so far. Human predictors really only had one major feather in their cap — Houston’s Nathan Peterman-fueled win over Buffalo (a very bad team whose badness Elo refuses to acknowledge) — but otherwise they saw Elo run roughshod over their picks. Elo correctly called wins for Dallas and Miami when readers picked otherwise, and it had a lot more confidence than readers in the Jets’ and Chargers’ victories as well. All told, the average reader is now down 233 points to Elo for the season to date.Among the readers who weren’t destroyed by Elo, congrats to John D. Harden, who led all users with 275 points in Week 6, and to Jevon Mallett, who continues to lead all users for the season with 453 points. Thanks to everyone who played last week — and if you didn’t play, get in on the game already! You can make picks now and still try your luck against Elo, even if you haven’t played yet.Check out our latest NFL predictions. 201631.8M. Gordon88.5T. Williams66.251.1 ATL27.76.5NYG1.21.07.51454 Home teams are in bold.The scoring system is nonlinear, so readers’ average points don’t necessarily match the number of points that would be given to the average reader prediction. 201077.1M. Tolbert59.4A. Gates48.964.3 GB66GB75GB 33, SF 30+3.3– Los Angeles will put its improved talent and newfound execution on display in London on Sunday, for a game against the Tennessee Titans that ranks among the best of Week 7 in terms of both matchup quality (i.e., the harmonic mean of the two teams’ Elo ratings in each game) and how much it figures to swing either team’s odds of making the playoffs: 200658.5L. Tomlinson145.2A. Gates57.861.1 Playoff %Playoff % 201548.3D. Woodhead68.2K. Allen45.338.6 CIN49.611.2KC95.83.614.81575 ATL67ATL64ATL 34, TB 29-3.9– WSH38.816.3DAL40.216.232.61517 PICKWIN PROB.PICKWIN PROB.ResultREADERS’ NET PTS Per-game measures are relative to team schedule lengths, not individual games played.YABQ: Yards Above Backup Quarterback, a measure of QB performance that gives credit for passing and rushing, and adjusts for strength of schedule.YDSC: yards from scrimmage, or rushing yards plus receiving yards.Defensive efficiency: ESPN’s measure of a defense’s per-play effectiveness on a 0-100 scale.Source: ESPN Stats & Information Group, pro-Football-Reference.com 200886.5L. Tomlinson96.0V. Jackson72.938.7 JAX46.713.8HOU23.612.926.71470 SEA67SEA63SEA 27, OAK 3-4.4– 2012-3.9R. Mathews59.9M. Floyd50.955.4 201379.6R. Mathews90.3K. Allen65.432.2 DAL53JAX60DAL 40, JAX 7-16.2– SeasonRivers YABQ/GTop RBYdSc/GTop Rec.YdSC/GTeam Def. efficiency YearBroken tackles/playNFL RankOpponents’ yards after 1st contact/rushNFL Rank Elo’s dumbest (and smartest) picks of Week 6Average difference between points won by readers and by Elo in Week 6 matchups in FiveThirtyEight’s NFL prediction game BAL68.711.5NO72.29.721.11605 BUF10.25.7IND4.12.38.01417 201148.0R. Mathews96.6V. Jackson72.333.2 Philip Rivers is great again — and he has helpLos Angeles Chargers’ production from quarterback Philip Rivers and his supporting cast, 2006-2018 201445.7B. Oliver53.3M. Floyd53.542.8 The best matchups of Week 7Week 7 games by the highest average Elo rating (using the harmonic mean) plus the total potential swing for the two teams’ playoff chances, according to FiveThirtyEight’s NFL predictions TEN53BAL54BAL 21, TEN 0+4.8– Source: Football Outsiders, ESPN Stats & Information Group LAR69LAR75LAR 23, DEN 20+1.2– CIN54CIN51PIT 28, CIN 21+1.2– MIA54CHI59MIA 31, CHI 28-15.4– For the Chargers, it’s part of a long road trip that will keep them away from Southern California until Nov. 18. The StubHub Center doesn’t exactly offer an intimidating advantage even when they are at home, but it does bear watching how L.A. manages all that travel. Even so, the Chargers’ season will still probably hinge on the final few matchups of the season — their last five games are either against division rivals or the biggest threats to their wild-card chances. If Rivers and his improved supporting cast can continue to thrive up to and including the month of December, we’ll know the Chargers have stamped their ticket back to the postseason and given their star QB at least one more chance to shine on the game’s brightest stage.FiveThirtyEight vs. the readersAttention football fans! Be sure to check out our constantly updating NFL prediction interactive, which uses FiveThirtyEight’s Elo ratings to forecast the rest of the season. And if you think you can outsmart Elo, step right up to our prediction game, which lets you pick against our model (and your fellow readers) for bragging rights and a place on our giant leaderboard.Here are the games where Elo made its best — and worst — predictions against the field of prognosticators last week: Conventional NFL wisdom says teams should do whatever it takes to snag a Franchise Quarterback™ — that from there, the winning just takes care of itself. But for most of Philip Rivers’s career, his Los Angeles (née San Diego) Chargers have been the exception to that rule. Taken fourth overall in the 2004 draft, Rivers has been the elite passer that teams dream about building around. And yet, his team has just four total playoff wins to show for it, including only one this decade.This year, though, Los Angeles looks poised to reverse that trend and actually capitalize on having a future Hall of Fame QB in its midst, while there’s still time left in Rivers’s career to do it. The Chargers walloped the Browns 38-14 in Cleveland last Sunday, bringing their record to 4-2 on the season — and giving them a 61 percent probability of making their first playoff appearance since 2013. Although L.A.’s postseason bid is far from assured, right now the Chargers have set themselves up with their most promising start to a season in a long time.This Charger renaissance has been building for a few years, since the team finally began surrounding Rivers again with better playmakers on both sides of the ball. On defense, that goes back to 2012, when former general manager A.J. Smith drafted pass-rusher Melvin Ingram 18th overall. After a slow start to his career, Ingram has blossomed into a Pro Bowler and an annual double-digit sack candidate. Under Smith’s successor, Tom Telesco, the Chargers have also grabbed several defensive contributors through the draft, including sack-machine DE Joey Bosa,1Who has missed the season so far with an injury but made the Pro Bowl last year. solid LB Denzel Perryman, up-and-coming CB Desmond King II and rookie S Derwin James (who, in his first season, already ranks as the NFL’s fifth-best safety according to ProFootballFocus’s player grades). Toss in outside pickups such as DT Brandon Mebane and CB Casey Hayward — another Pro Bowler from last season — plus the guidance of proven coordinator Gus Bradley, and the Chargers’ defensive talent base has undeniably made strides over the past handful of seasons.On offense, Telesco also made key acquisitions that helped pave the way for this year’s hot start when he took WR Keenan Allen in the third round of the 2013 draft and RB Melvin Gordon 15th overall in 2015. Picking first-round running backs is always tricky business, but Gordon has been a good one so far in his career, with a couple of 1,400-yards-from-scrimmage seasons under his belt (in 2016 and 2017) and an excellent start to 2018 as well. Meanwhile, Allen has taken the lead from top San Diego-era targets Malcom Floyd and Antonio Gates and forged his own chemistry with Rivers — only four receivers leaguewide have more yards through the air since 2017 than Allen does. (It also helps that Allen has stayed healthy these past two seasons after missing 23 combined games in 2015-16.) Allen and Gordon aren’t the only teammates making Rivers’s life easier: The offensive line has been much better with free-agent C Mike Pouncey anchoring the middle, while change-of-pace RB Austin Ekeler has proven himself exceptionally tough to bring down — he leads all RBs in yards after first contact per rush. More broadly, in its second year under head coach Anthony Lynn, Los Angeles now has the offensive pieces to beat teams in multiple ways.Add it all up and it’s clear that Rivers, who turns 37 in December, has a much better group of talent around him to work with than in years past. Here’s a look at the changes in Rivers’s own production over time — as measured by his Yards Above Backup Quarterback (YABQ) — along with how his top skill-position teammates and defense have also evolved: CAR55CAR58WSH 23, CAR 17-5.3– LAR95.83.3SF3.12.86.11512 NE54NE50NE 43, KC 40-6.2– PHI71PHI66PHI 34, NYG 13-5.4– TB20.75.6CLE1.11.06.61394 MIN74MIN79MIN 27, ARI 17+0.9– DEN3.82.6ARI1.40.83.41418 200726.4L. Tomlinson121.8A. Gates61.562.6 MIN57.013.4NYJ14.77.120.51513 read more

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Video replays necessary in FIFA to catch cheaters

The past week has been a tumultuous one in the international soccer world, as more than a few strong contenders found themselves forced into playoffs whose outcomes ultimately decided their world cup status.In international soccer — or football, as the rest of the world knows it — there isn’t a bigger spectacle. Held every four years, the FIFA World Cup draws the top 32 international teams to the biggest tournament on earth, an event that normally draws the eyes of a few billion people.Although a few key squads have traditionally dominated the World Cup, that huge gap has been closing in the past few years. This time around, some previously unknown and unlikely contenders have arisen and were welcomed to the world stage.For example, the normally illustrious Italian team was defeated earlier this year in the Confederations Cup by a terrific Egyptian squad. Similarly, the up-and-coming Irish team brilliantly showed France, runner-up from the last World Cup, just how intimidating it has become as a team.Oh, wait.That’s not exactly how it happened. What really happened was that it was an extremely close game after Ireland tied the points in aggregate. Basically, whoever scored next would secure a bid to the World Cup; a glorious feat both sides had been working hard on for years.Late in the game, a French ball crossed into the Irish box and was in danger of overshooting the mark. Thierry Henry, a French striker and one of the most respected international football players, then handled the ball in an unorthodox manner — he prevented the ball from going out of bounds with the palm of his hands. The three officials were in blind spots and couldn’t see the “hand of shame” so when Henry passed it to a teammate to head it in and score, the referee allowed the “obvious” goal despite the strong appeals by not only the goalie and defenders but also thousands sitting in the stadium that saw the ordeal take place.This isn’t the first time something like this has happened in football. Diego Maradona famously tapped a ball in with his hand (the so called “hand of god” goal) to score a goal that ultimately gave Argentina the 1986 World Cup.It wasn’t fair back then and you can be sure it is still a ridiculous farce today.It’s easy to jump to a bizarre theory to explain all this, of course. Did FIFA just want to get France a guaranteed spot in the World Cup? Perhaps the Fédération Internationale de Football Association couldn’t stand to see a World Cup occur without its beloved Les Blues.All conspiracy theories put aside, this situation does present a huge problem with not only football but also some other major sports (Baseball, I am looking directly at you). The human officials are not enough as we clearly see time and time again. It’s getting a little ridiculous, but what’s even worse is that no one is acknowledging that a problem does indeed exist.There’s something wrong with football. And until that problem is solved we can’t give the competing teams a fair and balanced game play, which is the one common promise that is characteristic of all sports. Although I am not going to pretend to know what the solution is, I suggest video replays be permitted, allowing for extra reviews in the dead minutes after a goal is scored.Then and only then can international football return to being the fair, fun, competitive sport that I, along with billions, so strongly love.Meanwhile, let’s see how many more players can creatively and secretively get away with using their hands in football, joining that oh so prestigious club of Henry, Maradona and Lionel Messi. read more

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Ohio State womens track and fields Khadevis Robinson ready for challenge

No current or former Ohio State track and field athletes qualified for the 2012 London Olympics, but the Buckeyes’ newest track and field coach did.Khadevis Robinson, who competed in the 800-meter run in London and also at the 2004 Athens Games, was announced as an assistant coach for OSU women’s track and field on Aug. 30. Robinson will lead the cross-country program and coach the track and field team’s distance runners.Before accepting the OSU position, Robinson had served in the same coaching capacity at the University of Nevada-Las Vegas for the men’s and women’s teams since January 2011. Under his guidance, junior Kelsey Williamson earned indoor and outdoor 800 meter Mountain West Conference indoor track and field championship titles, while senior Brett Zorich qualified for the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships in the same event.OSU women’s track and field coach Karen Dennis said she was impressed by what Robinson achieved in his time at UNLV, and believes it will translate to success at OSU.“When I looked at what Khadevis had done at UNLV, he was really getting some solid performances out of some women who I didn’t think had the talent,” Dennis said. “I didn’t think they had the same talent and depth that we have. I thought we have good, better talent, but we just weren’t getting the performances.”Robinson said he is excited for his new opportunity.“I’ve coached at almost every level … but I hadn’t coached at a big university,” Robinson said. “I like challenges and this will be a great challenge for me.”Robinson’s accomplishments as a professional athlete include four U.S. indoor titles and four U.S. outdoor championships in the 800 meter.A graduate of Texas Christian University, Robinson was also the 1998 NCAA champion in the 800 meter. He failed to qualify out of the opening heats of the 800 meter in both of his trips to the Olympics, but at 36 years old, he was the oldest competitor in the event in London.Robinson explained how his success as a professional athlete on the track has helped him achieve success coaching.“What it comes down to is really being able to relate to the athletes,” Robinson said. “So if they’re going through something, you can say, ‘Well, I know how you feel because I’ve gone through this also.’”Dennis said that while Robinson’s athletic success increased his appeal as a candidate for the job, there were other factors as well.“Well, I think that any time you’ve got somebody that’s coming in from the Olympics, sure they’re attractive,” Dennis said. “But at the same time, that wasn’t the sole reason. I would’ve still considered him as a strong candidate because I’m looking for somebody that showed results. I felt like he’s a good motivator, he’s very articulate …. and I felt like that’s what our kids needed.”Dennis said there were “probably 80 applicants,” and about 30 of them were what she would consider “strong, qualified applicants.”But Robinson stood out.“When it came to interviewing and bringing people on campus, he just proved himself. He just moved to the top of the pack,” Dennis said.An athletic spokesman stated that Robinson’s annual salary is $60,000.An Olympic runner on the track and a Division I coach on the sidelines, Robinson has had to learn how to balance two challenging jobs. He described the balance as “very, very, very, very, very difficult.”“If I was just running and not trying to be top 10 in the world, or making the Olympic team, it wouldn’t be as difficult because competing at the highest level is extremely difficult,” Robinson said. “On the other hand, some of the same things I tell my athletes, I can hear myself saying it to myself when I’m competing. So it gives me accountability, because when I tell some of the athletes I’m coaching to be A, B, C and D, then it makes me be accountable to doing A, B, C and D when I’m competing also.”But Robinson said coaching is a way for him to fulfill what he believes to be his purpose in life.“I think everything in life has a purpose,” Robinson said. “I found out my purpose is to inspire, motivate and help others. That’s my purpose in life. It just so happened that God blessed me as an athlete to be able to get my message out.” read more

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Mens Hockey No 1 Ohio State falls to UMass 63 in home

Ohio State redshirt senior goalie Sean Romeo (30) prepares for a UMass shot in the first period of the game against the University of Massachusetts on Oct. 19 in the Schottenstein Center. Credit: Casey Cascaldo | Photo EditorNo. 1 Ohio State men’s hockey team fell to UMass 6-3 after falling into an early hole in its home opener.Ohio State (2-1-0), ranked No. 1 in the polls for the first time in team history, allowed six goals against UMass (3-0-0) on only 27 shots. Though the loss was disappointing for the Buckeyes, head coach Steve Rohlik said there were positives from their first home outing, and they know what they need to work on.“Number one, we’ve got to just keep getting better. It’s the beginning of the year, it’s our third game, it’s a long season,” Rohlik  said. “We played a really good hockey team tonight, we knew that. You know, we didn’t have the start we wanted. I liked their compete coming back.”UMass senior forward Brett Boeing opened up the scoring off an assist from sophomore defenseman Cale Makar with just under ten minutes remaining in the first period.It wouldn’t be the last time Makar would leave his impression on Ohio State, as he would provide another assist and an empty net goal of his own later on.With just over seven minutes remaining in the second period, it was 3-0 in favor of the Minutemen and the Buckeyes seemed out of sorts, and were looking for a jump start on offense.“At that point is was kind of a do or die,” senior defenseman Sasha Larocque said. “You know we had to come out and give them our best to stay in the game, and the guys battled really hard, we got back into it.”After the Buckeyes killed a penalty, junior forward Carson Meyer gave the Buckeyes some momentum late in the second period off a penalty shot for his second goal of the season. He followed it up minutes later with his second goal of the game to cut the UMass lead to one.Though the game ended in defeat for the Buckeyes, Meyer still had an impressive game for the Buckeyes, scoring two goals that gave Ohio State a chance to mount a comeback.Halfway through the third period, senior forward Dakota Joshua scored to again cut the lead to one. But with less than five minutes remaining, UMass freshman forward Bobby Trivigno made it 5-3 in favor of the Minutemen to ice the game. An additional goal was tacked on a minute later by Makar to bring the final score to 6-3.Ohio State outshot UMass 38-27 on the night and were one for five on the power play. Redshirt senior goaltender Sean Romeo saved 21 shots and allowed five goals.Looking to tomorrow’s game, Larocque said the team knows what it needs to improve on to earn its first home win of the season.“I think just, like coach has been saying, coming out ready to play, start to finish. It’s something we’ve struggled with in past years, being consistent throughout an entire game, and it’s something that we really need to improve,” Larocque said.The Buckeyes will return to the Schottenstein Center to play their second game against UMass at 5:00 p.m on Saturday. read more

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Wrestling No 6 Ohio State brings nationleading 10man lineup into NCAA Championships

No. 2 Kollin Moore gets his hand raised after defeating No. 19 Malik McDonald of North Carolina State University by major decision in the 197-pound bout, 15-6. Credit: Sal Marandino | For The LanternThe Ohio State wrestling team will be the only team in the nation to represent all 10 weight classes when it heads to Pittsburgh Thursday to compete for a title in the NCAA Championships.No. 6 Ohio State (12-2, 7-2 Big Ten) will try to win the NCAA Championship as a team after finishing second each of the past two postseasons to Penn State. The Buckeyes have the edge as the only team with the ability to gain points in all 10 weight classes, and with multiple wrestlers in contention for individual championships.“Let’s not take for granted the fact that we did what no other team did this year in the country in regard to qualifying [all 10 wrestlers],” Ohio State head coach Tom Ryan said. “But also, it is Ohio State, and we can attract the best, and we are all seeking perfection and that’s what we are after.”The Buckeyes’ 10-man lineup earned five top-5 seeds for the 2019 NCAA Wrestling Championships. Ohio State senior Myles Martin, the No. 1 wrestler in the country at 184 pounds, received the only top seed for the Buckeyes.Martin is one of only 12 wrestlers nationally to own an undefeated record heading into the NCAA Championships.Ryan said Martin has a lot of pressure to win the national title but is confident in his abilities.“I believe [Martin] is the best pound-for-pound wrestler in the tournament,” Ryan said. “We will see come Thursday.”Ohio State senior Joey McKenna, the No. 2 wrestler in the country at 141 pounds, avenged one of his two losses on the season in the Big Ten 141-pound championship match by defeating Penn State sophomore Nick Lee, the then-No. 2 wrestler in the NCAA at 141 pounds.McKenna could have a chance to avenge the only other wrestler that has defeated him this season in Cornell sophomore Yianni Diakomihalis, who is the No. 1 wrestler at 141 pounds and remains undefeated, should they both reach the finals.Ryan said McKenna learned from his loss, and knows what he needs to do to defeat No. 1 seed Diakomihalis.“[McKenna] had a great match with [Diakomihalis]. We liked the way the match went,” Ryan said. “He has to finish some of the shots he didn’t finish.”Ohio State redshirt senior Micah Jordan and redshirt junior Kollin Moore, the No. 2 wrestlers in the country at 149 pounds and 197 pounds, respectively, both head into the NCAA Championships as the other two No. 2 seeds for the Buckeyes.Jordan has lost only two matches this season, both to Rutgers’ Anthony Ashnault, who is the top seed at 149 pounds.Moore also has two losses to one wrestler: undefeated Penn State redshirt senior Bo Nickal, the No. 1 wrestler in the country at 197 pounds.Ryan said the wrestlers must go match by match and he expects big things from Jordan and Moore.“They got to be really smart with the tactics they use and the skill they use when they use it,” Ryan said. “A lot of this at times boils down to quality decision-making.”Ohio State junior Luke Pletcher, the No. 9 wrestler in the country at 133 pounds, received the No. 5 seed in the NCAA Championships after a strong performance in the Big Ten Tournament, finishing as the runner-up.Pletcher said the 133-pound weight class was very difficult this season, but still feels ready to compete.“No matter where they put you in that bracket, it is going to be a brutal way,” Pletcher said. “I think I got a good [seed], ready to wrestle and feel good [about] getting back my mojo and ready to rock.”Ohio State senior Te’Shan Campbell, the No. 16 wrestler in the country at 165 pounds, received the No. 21 seed in the NCAA Championships.Campbell transferred to Ohio State from the University of Pittsburgh after the 2017 season and talked about what it means to him to be wrestling in front of his hometown in Pittsburgh for the NCAA Championships.“Why not have it at home [when] it could be anywhere?” Campbell said. “I look forward to the experience of going back home with friends and family and being able to celebrate with them.”No. 6 Ohio State will attempt to win its first NCAA Championship since 2015 starting at noon Thursday in Pittsburgh. read more

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Imelda Staunton Ban eating at the theatre

first_imgFood and drink should be banned from the theatre, Imelda Staunton has argued, as she laments the decline of concentration among modern audiences.Staunton, the award-winning actress who recently took to the stage for Gypsy, said she cannot understand why people “can’t engage in just one thing”, watching a play without needing to constantly graze in their seat.Her words come after heated debate in the theatre industry over a trend for audiences to snack during performances. Doctor Faustus, starring Kit Harington Earlier this year, producer Richard Jordan revealed he had endured “possibly the worst West End audience I have ever encountered” during a performance of Doctor Faustus, including one group eating a takeaway McDonald’s during the show.“What amazed me most was this audience…could see nothing wrong in talking, eating and taking pictures throughout the show – or complaining when asked to stop,” he said.In an interview with Radio Times magazine, Staunton said she would “definitely” move to ban eating in theatres altogether. Imelda Staunton as Rose, and Lara Pulver as Louise, in Gypsy  Doctor Faustus, starring Kit Harington “I don’t want American television here. It’s channel after channel after channel, and that dilutes things.“It’s like going to a big supermarket and being overwhelmed by the choice of biscuits.“When Downton Abbey was on, people were talking about it. People talked about Sherlock and I was really annoyed I hadn’t watched it!“But now, that unifying thing of people all talking about one piece of television is disappearing.” “I don’t know why people can’t engage in just one thing,” she said. “I don’t understand this obsession with having to eat or drink something at every moment of the day.”Even at home, with her actor husband Jim Carter, she said she refused to dine in front of the television, admitting: “There might, at one point in the evening, be a very small, very naughty bowl of ice cream. “But that’s not noisy.”When asked for her views on British television, the actress added: “I’m not sure that so much choice is necessarily a good thing. Imelda Staunton as Rose, and Lara Pulver as Louise, in Gypsy Credit:Alastair Muir Staunton and her husband Jim Carter Staunton and her husband Jim Carter Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

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Parents should enforce no seconds policy at mealtimes to prevent child obesity

first_img Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. In 2015-16, 19.8 per cent of Year 6 children were obese Dr Russell Viner, also of UCL, said parents often did not notice that their children had a weight problem until it was too late.“At what point to parents notice their child is overweight? It’s not until it’s extreme obesity. It’s equivalent to adult bmi of 40 which is morbidly obese.“And even when they realise there is a problem they just think there child is overweight, when they are already obese.”Recent figures from the National Child Measurement Programme for England show record numbers of children are leaving primary school obese.Nearly one in five 10 to 11-year-olds was obese in the last academic year, with more than one in three (34.2 per cent) now described as overweight or obese.In 2015-16, 19.8 per cent of Year 6 children were obese, meaning they had a body-mass index of 30 or above, a sharp rise on the 19.1 per cent the year before. Her comments follow years of research conducted by UCL which found that children who eat more are genetically programmed to be less able to resist food and need more to feel satisfied.Dr LLewellyn said some children were born with ‘greedy genes’ and those who inherit them will have a larger appetite and so are more likely to gain excessive weight.She said that the influence of genes could already be seen at just three months old with some children wolfing down milk, while other mothers struggled to get their children to feed.“Contrary to common opinion that toddlers are good at regulating their food intake, some are not and they are much more susceptible to overeating,” she said.   Malnutrition now equals obesity. It is a reversal of hundreds of thousands of years of human history where poverty was linked with under nutrition.Dr Russell Viner, UCL In 2015-16, 19.8 per cent of Year 6 children were obesecenter_img Parents should enforce a strict ‘no seconds’ policy at mealtimes to prevent their children becoming overweight, an obesity expert has advised.Dr Clare Llewellyn said most youngsters became obese because they were eating an average of just 12 calories extra per meal, an amount so small as to be unnoticeable to parents.But the tiny amount adds an extra 2,500 calories each month to their diet, which led to youngsters putting on weight up to seven per cent quicker than other children of the same age.Dr Llewellyn, a lecturer in behavioural obesity research at University College London, said parents needed to be strict about portion sizes and never offer seconds. Speaking at an obesity meeting at the Royal Society of Medicine in Central London, Dr Llewellyn said: “Overweight children get 12 calories extra calories every time they eat. At this stage as a parent 12 calories is completely invisible to the naked human eye.“You can intervene. What this data indicates is that all parents should be being vigilant about portion control, so a no seconds policy.“The best indicator of whether you need to be more vigilant is how quickly your child is growing. One of the huge issues at the moment in the UK is that there is very little concern about rapid growth in infancy and much much more concern about failure to thrive, which is completely understandable because failure to thrive can be incredibly serious.“But actually as time goes on what we realise is that as time goes parents do need to be educated about what a healthy growth rate looks like and if a child is crossing centiles upwards that’s something that does need to be addressed.” Dr Viner said said medical students needed to be told to be as aware of children eating too much as too little and called for a return to measuring youngsters as they were growing up.“Malnutrition now equals obesity,” he said.  “It is a reversal of hundreds of thousands of years of human history where poverty was linked with under nutrition.“Much of risk of obesity is programmed within our first year. I believe we must go back to more routine measuring and weighing of children.“In the 1950s people got free exercise and activity at work. Our children got free activity going to school. There was human locomotion.“Now we’ve moved from a situation where we got activity for free at work to having to pay for activity, and so poverty equals obesity.” Show more last_img read more

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London Marathon runners frustrated after being warned not to train outside due

first_imgTony Bowen agreed, writing: “Seriously is it safe to go running? Training for the London Marathon so will be a fair bit of puffing and panting…” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.  The elderly, adults and children with lung problems, and adults with heart problems have been advised to avoid strenuous activity all together.Sadiq Khan has previously cited the air pollution levels as a “public health emergency” and data data showed London broke the air pollution limit just five days into 2017. People in training for the London Marathon have expressed their frustration they cannot train after Sadiq Khan has warned Londoners to avoid physical exertion.Many are trying to get fit for the race, which takes place in April this year.However, Sadiq Khan has warned Londoners not to exert themselves outside, tweeting: “This is the highest level air quality alert. Everyone, from the most vulnerable to the physically fit, may need to reduce physical exertion.”Alexis Fuller tweeted: “Er. Got a marathon to train for. Why can’t we take the Paris approach to reduce pollution and ban half of all cars? (Or just all cars?)”  The Mayor has asked people to use public transport if possible as smog hits dangerous levels.This alert was issued after pollution detectors in the City, Westminster, north Kensington and three sites in Camden found very top levels of tiny pollution particles in the air yesterday morning.It’s the highest air pollution alert issued by Airtech, advising people to “reduce physical exertion, particularly outdoors, especially if you experience symptoms such as cough or sore throat”. We’ve put together some top tips to get you through the cold, dark days of your #LondonMarathon training👉 https://t.co/FJ5F028sHc ❄️️ pic.twitter.com/CWOqA30PqA— London Marathon (@LondonMarathon) January 23, 2017 Was going to run home tonight but hell no. This London pollution is terrible.— Kelly Prince-Wright (@kellyprincew) January 23, 2017last_img read more

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Princess Dianas former butler Paul Burrell to marry his boyfriend after divorcing

first_imgFormer royal butler Paul Burrell is to marry his boyfriend next month, less than a year after divorcing his wife of 32 years, it has been reported.Mr Burrell, 58, who worked for the late Diana, Princess of Wales, and was known as her “rock”, is due to wed his partner Graham Cooper, a lawyer, next month.He formally split from his ex-wife Maria last year, although reports suggested they had been living apart for a number of years. Paul Burrell pictured with Diana, Princess of Wales, in 1997 A statement at the time said it was a “mutual” decision. They had first met when working at Buckingham Palace together.Until now the former butler has not publicly spoken about his sexuality.He and Mr Cooper, also 58, are said to be planning a circus-themed ceremony in the Lake District next month before a small number of guests. A spokesman for Mr Burrell told the Sun: “I can confirm their forthcoming marriage.” “Paul and Maria will not be giving any further comments and would kindly request that their privacy is respected during this time.” Paul Burrell got divorced last yearCredit:Stefan Rousseau/PA  Paul Burrell Paul Burrell pictured with Diana, Princess of Wales, in 1997Credit:Stefan Rousseau./PA Since his time working for the royal family, Mr Burrell has appeared on reality television, including a stint in the jungle on I’m A Celebrity … Get Me Out Of Here. He has also written an autobiography. A statement issued following his divorce last year said: “Our clients Paul and Maria Burrell would like to end any speculation over the past few days by confirming that they are currently going through a divorce.”The decision to file for divorce was a mutual one, both Paul and Maria remain the best of friends and have two wonderful sons together who remain their priority. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

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