PORTLAND, Ore. — Nijal Pearson scored a career-high 33 points and Texas State used a second-half offensive eruption to blast Portland 91-68 on Saturday night in the Portland Classic Championship game.Texas State (5-1) led 36-34 at halftime, and after intermission, proceeded to shoot 20 of 32 (62.5 per cent) including 9 of 13 (69) from 3-point range. Portland’s shooting went in the opposite direction as the Pilots (5-3) shot 25 per cent (7 of 28) from the field.Pearson finished 12 of 18 shooting and 6 of 9 from 3-point range, was named the tournament’s Most Valuable Player this weekend and surpassed 1,100 career points. Pearson also finished with three steals to give him 103 to move into 10th-place all time in school history.Tre’Larenz Nottingham scored 11 and Chandler Davis scored 10 for the Bobcats.JoJo Walker led the Pilots with 17 points and Marcus Shaver Jr. scored 13.The Associated Press
MONTGOMERY, Ala. — WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder says he wants a rematch with Tyson Fury “ASAP.”Wilder said in a conference call Tuesday that he’s “ready and willing to give Tyson Fury the opportunity ASAP.” The two heavyweights fought to a split-decision draw Saturday night in Los Angeles in one of the bigger heavyweight bouts in America in years.Afterward, the British challenger said the two would “100 per cent” meet again in the ring. Wilder says he doesn’t want to fight anybody else before a rematch.He says, “Everyone is talking about this fight. It’s only right for us to go back in and do it again.”Wilder (40-0-1) knocked Fury (27-0-1) down twice late in the fight, but was outboxed much of the way at Staples Center.___More AP sports: https://apnews.com/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_SportsJohn Zenor, The Associated Press
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The Panthers have officially placed three-time Pro Bowl tight end Greg Olsen on injured reserve.The move was expected after Olsen told reporters on Sunday that he ruptured his right plantar fascia in Carolina’s 24-17 loss to the Buccaneers.The Panthers have signed wide receiver Mose Frazier from the practice squad to take Olsen’s roster spot.Rookie Ian Thomas and Chris Manhertz are expected to split duty at tight end. Thomas is the better receiver of the two with 16 receptions for 133 yards this season.It is Olsen’s third foot injury in the last two seasons. He previously broke the same foot in 2017 and again earlier this season.Olsen is a three-time Pro Bowl selection and the only tight end in NFL history with three consecutive 1,000-yard receiving seasons.__For more NFL coverage: https://apnews.com/NFL and http://www.twitter.com/AP_NFLThe Associated Press
The Ohio State football team suffered hits to the depth of their defensive backfield this week in the form of two potentially career-ending shoulder injuries.Redshirt junior cornerback Adam Griffin, son of former Buckeyes running back and two-time Heisman Trophy winner Archie Griffin, underwent shoulder surgery Thursday morning. The injury will “in all likelihood” prevent Adam Griffin from continuing to play football, according to an OSU athletics spokesman.Redshirt senior defensive back Jamie Wood’s attempt to come back from multiple shoulder surgeries, including one that limited him to four games last season, has also ended due to a shoulder injury, according to the spokesman.Griffin played in all 12 games for the Buckeyes last season. He played primarily on special teams and recorded 13 tackles.Wood played in all 13 games of both the 2010 and 2011 seasons for the Buckeyes. He recorded 20 tackles between those two seasons and was, like Griffin, primarily a special teams player.Not including Griffin and Wood, the Buckeyes still have 20 players listed as cornerbacks, safeties or defensive backs on their roster. Sophomore cornerback Najee Murray is currently suspended from the team due to a “training camp issue,” while redshirt junior cornerback Bradley Roby could still face a suspension following a misdemeanor battery arrest in Bloomington, Ind. on July 21.
Then-freshman linebacker Raekwon McMillan (2) attempts to make a tackle during a game against Wisconsin on Dec. 6 in Indianapolis. OSU won, 59-0.Credit: Mark Batke / Photo EditorWith the Ohio State Spring Game just days away, there are still a few positions with vacancies.Defensive linemen Michael Bennett and Steve Miller join linebacker Curtis Grant and cornerback Doran Grant as members of the OSU defense who will not return after the title run in 2014.With that in mind, I took a look at five players you should watch in Saturday’s game to either replace the former Buckeyes or at least get some playing time in 2015 on the defensive side of the ball.1. Redshirt-sophomore cornerback Gareon ConleyThe Massillon, Ohio, native was the first person mentioned by cornerbacks coach Kerry Coombs as the likely cornerback counterpart next to returning starter redshirt-sophomore Eli Apple.Conley earned one start in 2014 against the Michigan State Spartans, but after giving up big plays and a touchdown on the first drive of the game, was quickly replaced by a less-than-healthy Apple.With a spot open after Doran Grant’s departure, it is likely that the spot will be filled by either Conley or sophomore Damon Webb.Conley seemingly has the upper hand and a good showing in the Spring Game can only help his chances.2. Sophomore cornerback Damon Webb While Webb is behind Conley for the corner spot, there is a good chance he will still see significant playing time in 2015 at the nickel position.With Armani Reeves not returning because of health issues related to concussions, the nickel spot, which is usually reserved for passing downs, is wide open and it’s Webb’s job for the taking.Webb must have the skill to play, as he did not redshirt last season behind players like Doran Grant, Reeves, Apple and Conley.He appeared in nine games in 2014, and is sure to make an impact in 2015.3. Sophomore linebacker Raekwon McMillanMcMillan made an instant impact last season as a true freshman, collecting 54 total tackles and playing in all but one game in 2014.He is the odds-on favorite to take over for Curtis Grant at the middle linebacker position and could possibly be even better than the graduating senior.McMillan was constantly subbed in for Curtis Grant on passing downs last season and was clearly the better athlete. Don’t expect him to get too much playing time on Saturday, but watch to see how he communicates with his teammates as the new signal caller on defense.4. Senior defensive lineman Tommy SchuttCoach Urban Meyer said Monday that Schutt is currently the favorite to replace Bennett on the interior defensive line.Not quite yet the starter, Schutt has struggled throughout his OSU career battling injuries along with a lack of playing time. He has accumulated just 17 total tackles in his first three years as a Buckeye.The reason to watch him is not because he is going to be an impact player in the Spring Game, but rather to see how he reacts to being on the cusp of earning a starting job.5. Sophomore defensive lineman Jalyn HolmesMeyer said Monday that redshirt-sophomore Tyquan Lewis is the front-runner to replace Miller at defensive end, but Lewis will not play in the Spring Game because of a shoulder injury.That opens the door for a player like Holmes, who came to OSU as a four-star prospect out of Norfolk, Va.Holmes played in nine games last season, including the national title win over Oregon, and accumulated 11 tackles in those appearances.There is a good chance Holmes will play most of the game on Saturday, and a good showing could put make him a dark horse to unseat Lewis from the starting lineup.Kickoff is set for 1:30 p.m., and is set to follow the OSU lacrosse game against Maryland, which is set to start at 11 a.m. at Ohio Stadium.
Sophomore Sean Melton competes during the 2015 P&G Championships. Courtesy of OSU athleticsThree members of the Ohio State men’s gymnastics team competed among the nation’s best at the 2015 P&G Gymnastics Championships held in Indianapolis from Aug. 13 – 16. Junior Sean Melton finished 16th in the all-around, while freshmen Alec Yoder and Tristan Burke finished 20th and 28th, respectively. All three athletes finished in the top 10 of at least one event. Melton tied for eighth on rings, Burke ranked ninth on the vault and Yoder finished fifth on the pommel horse and ninth on the high bar. Melton, who finished 11th in the 2014 championships but dealt with a lower-back injury throughout the course of the 2015 season, said he was happy to be able to compete.“It just felt good to compete again since I was out for a while. Any time you can compete and get the butterflies and nerves, it’s a fun experience,” Melton said. For Yoder and Burke, competing in the senior competition was a new experience, with a key difference being the large crowd. “It was a lot different with a bigger crowd. You just got to feed off their energy,” Burke said. “The nerves were definitely there, but it was fun just knowing that they all had your back.”The competition offered up the opportunity to compete against longtime members of the gymnastics community. “It’s not every day that you get to compete against guys who are some of the best in the world,” Yoder said. “Taking the gymnastics up to the next level to compete with guys you’ve looked up to for a long time was a fun-filled experience.”Burke cited observing the veterans’ calm demeanors as a learning moment. “It was a pretty important meet, and they were just real relaxed about it. They were able to just put something they messed up on behind them,” he said.Next June, the 2016 P&G Championships will act as the trials for the 2016 Summer Olympics. The gymnasts said they view training for OSU as the best preparation.“We push each other every day. Working toward success for Ohio State is going to pay off when we’re in 2016 going into championships and trials to fight for a spot on that Rio Olympic team and things going forward like World Championships and the 2020 Olympic games,” Yoder said.Melton said training with other gymnasts who have similar ambitions is beneficial for both the individuals and the team.“It definitely helps bringing in guys that are the same caliber gymnasts that want the same goals,” Melton said. “Training with guys like these, you can’t get much better than that in helping to push each other to become the best that we can be as a team and for USA.”While the Olympics are a goal, the main focus when the gymnastics season begins in January is a national championship.“We come here to win championships, and Ohio State is really good at that,” Melton said. “We just have to put in the work, put our head down and grind through it to make it happen.”Yoder said he believes the team has the right ingredients to win it all.“We got the spirit, we got the ability. We have everything I think that makes the perfect chemistry in the gym,” he said. Until then, Melton, Yoder and Burke are trying to find balance in the busy routine of a student-athlete.Sophomore Sean Melton competes during the 2015 P&G Championships. Courtesy of OSU athleticsFor Yoder and Burke, the transition has been “crazy” and “intense.” Like many freshmen, they said they are learning what it’s like to be on their own for the first time. “It’s definitely been a 180-degree difference than anything else I’ve done,” Burke said. “But it’s fun knowing that you’re more independent.” Melton, now in his third year with the program, is taking on the role of a mentor.“I’ve been trying to take these guys under my arms and make them succeed immediately,” he said. “I know exactly what they’re going through now. I still struggle sometimes, but I feel like I have a better understanding of the program, the school and just how to be smart with it.” While the lifestyle is difficult and full of sacrifices, ranging from a lack of sleep to turning down pizza, the athletes said they are thankful for the opportunity. “At the end of the day it’s all completely worth it. It’s such an amazing university that we’re all blessed and grateful to be a part of,” Yoder said. A few months stand between now and the start of the gymnastics season, but dedicated training has already started.“The entire squad is in the gym taking care of their business right now, and there’s not a doubt in my mind that they’re all grinding really hard in there,” Burke said. “I’m just ready to start hitting those meets and putting Ohio State men’s gymnastics back on the map.”The Buckeyes are scheduled to kick their season off with an intrasquad meet on Dec. 19.
The Ohio State women’s basketball team huddles before its first round game against Western Kentucky in the NCAA tournament in Lexington, Kentucky. Credit: Dana Lewin | Courtesy of OSU AthleticsThe No. 5 seed Ohio State women’s basketball team dominated the No. 4 seed Kentucky Wildcats 82-68 with sharp shooting and tough defense in the second round of the NCAA tournament in Lexington, Kentucky.Freshman Tori McCoy and redshirt junior guard Linnae Harper dominated on the floor for the Buckeyes, each recording a double-double.This was a battle between two of the most powerful guards in the country — Kentucky’s senior Makayla Epps and OSU’s junior Kelsey Mitchell, who each led their team in scoring with 21 points a piece.The Buckeyes had five players scoring in double figures including Mitchell, senior forward Shayla Cooper (10), Harper (12), McCoy (14) and redshirt sophomore guard Sierra Calhoun (10).Mitchell started things off right for the Scarlet and Gray, draining a 3 just five seconds into the game. OSU got an early 12-8 lead thanks to 10 points from Mitchell in the first five minutes of play.Kentucky kept the OSU lead to just four-points at the end of the first quarter, with senior forward Evelyn Akhator leading the team in points and dominating rebounds on both sides of the floor. She finished with 14 points and 23 rebounds.In the beginning of the second quarter, the Buckeyes took control of the game, going on a 15-2 run in the first five minutes. OSU led the fast-paced game 46-31 and sunk six from 3 compared to the Wildcats’ one.Kentucky came out with more fire in the second half and out-scored the Buckeyes 22-15 in the third quarter. Epps and Akhator led the Wildcats in scoring as they decreased the deficit to just 8-points.Sophomore Wildcat Maci Morris downed a 3-pointer with 8:55 left to play to bring her team within one possession of the Buckeyes, 61-58.The Wildcats never obtained the lead, however, and OSU went on an 8-0 run which resulted in a 82-68 tournament victory.Harper, who transferred to OSU from Kentucky halfway through the 2015-16 season, was essential in the victory over her former team. She nearly had a triple-double with 12 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists.OSU will move on to the regional semifinals in the Sweet 16 round on March 24 at Rupp Arena. The Buckeyes will take on the winner of No. 1 seed Notre Dame and No. 9 seed Purdue.
OSU then-redshirt sophomore middle blocker Matt Dorn (15) prepares to hits the ball during a game against George Mason at St John Arena on Jan. 15. Credit: Lantern file photoFor the first time since 2015, the Ohio State men’s volleyball team lost in an opponent’s home gym. In Tuesday’s showdown between the No. 1 Buckeyes and No. 13 Penn State, it was the Nittany Lions who had the last laugh.In five sets, Penn State topped OSU. After 11 unforced errors by the Buckeyes in the first set, it was a constant uphill battle for the Scarlet and Gray.After closing out the first set 25-21, Penn State was pushed back by OSU, as the Buckeyes leaned on senior setter Christy Blough, who assisted on 14 kills and picked up one of his own. In the end, OSU dominated the set 25-14.However, the Nittany Lions regained all the momentum, stunning the Buckeyes with a 25-15 tally at the end of the third set. OSU battled back and won the fourth with a 25-22, and forcing a fifth set.A short scoring streak at the end of the final frame by Penn State ultimately pushed the Nittany Lions ahead, clinching their 15th win of the season. After 20-straight road wins, Penn State proved to be too much.OSU returns to Columbus for a homestand against McKendree University on March 31 and April 2, with both games set for 7 p.m.
Ohio State’s junior-forward Mason Jobst (26) steals the puck away from Notre Dame’s sophomore forward Mike O’Leary (19) during a Big Ten conference matchup at the Schottenstein Center on November 3, 2017 in Columbus, Ohio. OSU lost 1-4. Credit: Alex Hulvalchick | For the LanternThe No. 11 Ohio State men’s hockey team (8-3-3, 3-3-0-0 Big Ten) will play a home game for the first time in nearly a month this weekend, with a two-game series against conference foe Penn State (8-7-1, 3-4-1-0 in Big Ten).The Nittany Lions come into this home series winning three of their past four games, including decisive 7-0 and 7-2 victories against Arizona State and Michigan State, respectively. Penn State is the latest high-powered offense Ohio State faces, ranking third in the nation with 3.81 goals per game.Penn State’s potent offense tallies an NCAA-leading 41.7 shots per game.“They’re going to get their shots,” head coach Steve Rohlik said. “We just have to continue to play solid defense, and the shot column is not the one that really means the most to me, it’s obviously the goals. And for us we want to defend as best we can and, when we get our opportunities, try to get some rushes going the other way.”Junior forward Andrew Sturtz leads Penn State with eight goals and 19 points, but a key player in the matchup will be sophomore forward Denis Smirnov. Smirnov returns to the Nittany Lions after missing the previous eight games with an undisclosed illness.The forward from Moscow, Russia, dominated during his freshman campaign, leading the nation’s freshmen with 47 points on 19 goals and 28 assists, all of which are Penn State freshman records. Smirnov has registered 11 points this season with five goals and six assists in eight games, and Rohlik knows how much of a threat he can be on the ice.“He’s one of the best players in the country. He’s proven that last year, and we understand what he brings,” Rohlik said. “He’s a catalyst to their offense, but again, for us it’s not about one guy, we have to defend their five guys on the ice, and that’s the way we go about it each week.”In the past four seasons, Ohio State has won 11 of its 16 matchups against Penn State, including two wins on the road — one in a shootout — last season while the Nittany Lions were ranked No. 1 in the country.“We got their number, I can tell you that,” senior forward Christian Lampasso said.Lampasso scored two of his four goals last weekend in Game 2 of the weekend sweep against then-No. 17 Michigan. He said the series was one of the highlight moments of his Ohio State career.“It was really cool getting those two goals, in Michigan, sealing the game, and it meant a lot for the school, for the team, a big win for the Buckeyes altogether,” Lampasso said.Penn State remains two points ahead of the Buckeyes in the Big Ten, but Ohio State has two games in hand and could move up to second in the conference behind Notre Dame with a pair of wins over the weekend.The Buckeyes will need to rely on their team defense, which has allowed the second-least goals in the NCAA, as well as their nation-leading penalty kill to slow down the Nittany Lions’ high-flying offense.“We’ve always tried to be defensive first, even last year, even though it maybe didn’t seem like that at times, but this year we’ve definitely bought all-in to the system, and, as you’ve seen it’s been working out pretty well for us,” junior forward Mason Jobst said.Puck drop for the Penn State series is set for 7:00 p.m. Friday and 4:00 p.m. Saturday at the Schottenstein Center.
MILPHO+0.0 NOPMIA, OKC, PHO-0.1 DETBOS, OKC+1.4 BOSDET+2.1 SACWAS+1.8 OKCNOP, UTA-0.7 TEAMTRADED WITHNET WAR MINBRK-0.2 PHIDEN, HOU, MIL-0.1 DENPHI, POR+0.7 UTAOKC+0.2 WASSAC-0.9 NYKHOU-0.5 After a week’s hiatus because of the All-Star break, we’re back with FiveThirtyEight’s NBA Power Ratings.There are more than a few trade deadline-related changes to the rankings this week, but before I get to those, a quick explanation of how these numbers work: Teams are ranked according to a projection of their strength over the upcoming week using Real Plus-Minus (RPM) player ratings provided by Jeremias Engelmann and Steve Ilardi. For more details on these numbers, see our introductory rankings post.In many ways, ranking the league after a reshuffling of players — like Thursday’s trade deadline — is precisely what power ratings such as these are intended to do. Because they’re based on the underlying talent of the players on each team’s roster, they ought to be able to account for player movement more quickly than ratings that require the new-look teams to play together a bunch of times.So, how much did the deadline really shake up the league? Here’s a look at the statistical effect of deadline trades on each team, in terms of the RPM wins above replacement (WAR) they are projected to gain or lose over the remainder of the 2014-15 schedule: HOUNYK, PHI+0.3 (Note that all of these gains and losses are for 2014-15 only — they don’t take into account draft picks exchanged or even the future implications of picking up a player and his contract.)As SB Nation’s Paul Flannery noted, this trade deadline didn’t really make much difference despite all the chaos in the final hectic minutes.Sure, the top team, Miami, added about 2.4 wins over the rest of the season, and Phoenix brought up the rear with a loss of more than 3 WAR when the dust settled. The moves may have kept the Heat afloat for the playoffs (especially in light of the subsequent news that Chris Bosh would be lost for the season with blood clots) and signaled the death knell for the Suns’ postseason chances.But the rest of the biggest movers and shakers on deadline day either had already locked up a playoff slot (Washington and Oklahoma City took steps back but are near 100 percent playoff probability by our projections anyway) or didn’t have a prayer no matter what they did (the Celtics, for all their improvements on deadline day, are still staring at a mere 12.1 percent chance of making the playoffs).The exception to this might be the Detroit Pistons. Two weeks ago, the Pistons clung to a meager 9.9 percent probability of making the playoffs, according to our model. Now they have a 47.8 percent chance of making the postseason and have jumped from 21st to 16th in the power rankings — some of that thanks to the 1.4-WAR boost they picked up at the trade deadline with Reggie Jackson (an upgrade made doubly positive by the discarding of sub-replacement level guard D.J. Augustin).Aside from the Pistons, however, it seems as though few of Thursday’s moves will upend the playoff picture in either conference.At any rate, many of the trades yielded positive WAR simply by jettisoning a poor player from the roster. Take, for instance, Sacramento’s trade of Ramon Sessions to Washington. It netted a solid player in return — Andre Miller is expected to generate 0.8 WAR for the Kings over the rest of the season — but removing Sessions was the bigger windfall in terms of 2014-15 WAR. Sessions’ -5.1 predictive RPM combined with an expectation of 17 minutes per game to potentially deliver -1.0 WAR to Sacramento before it traded him away.As for the rankings themselves, the New Orleans Pelicans were the biggest movers since two Mondays ago — and in a very bad way. They lost all-everything forward Anthony Davis to a shoulder sprain that will cost him several weeks of action, which coupled with an ongoing injury to Jrue Holiday — and the addition of RPM disaster Norris Cole — to drop the Pelicans 11 ranking slots. RPM says their depleted roster projects to be the fourth-worst in basketball over the next week.The Dallas Mavericks dropped eight slots in this edition of the rankings. Adding Amar’e Stoudemire didn’t help, but the biggest changes were an injury to Chandler Parsons and the return of statistical enigma Rajon Rondo to their lineup. Rondo’s having a subpar season by the numbers, and short-term RPM gives him a rating near the replacement level. But at least Dallas is still 99.5 percent likely to make the playoffs, according to our simulations.Looking for good news? The Los Angeles Clippers rose six spots in the rankings from two weeks ago. Usually changes to the power ratings are due to player movement, injuries or other reallocations of minutes, but in the case of the Clippers, the improved play of Jamal Crawford has also played a role. Crawford still carries a negative RPM rating, but he’s averaging 22.8 points per game over his last four outings and has been present for some of the Clippers’ best basketball — they’ve averaged a +17.5 scoring margin per game with him on the floor over the past two weeks.Finally, let’s give a hand to the New York Knicks. While they’ve been a fun punchline all season, they’ve been in a dogfight with the Philadelphia 76ers for last place in our rankings all season. But after a season-ending injury to Carmelo Anthony, the Knicks have separated themselves from the pack, easily ranking as the least-talented team in the NBA this week. With the likes of RPM ne’er-do-wells Jose Calderon, Jason Smith and Tim Hardaway Jr. projected to soak up huge minutes for the rest of the season, Jim Dolan’s team is truly a fitting “Hope Diamond in his loser’s tiara.” PORDEN+0.4 MIANOP, PHO+2.4 PHODET, MIA, MIL-3.2 BRKMIN+0.4