Raiders try to return to normalcy after clinching NCAA tourney bid

Published: Thursday, March 08, 2018 @ 3:39 PM
Updated: Thursday, March 08, 2018 @ 4:06 PM

Raiders trying to get back to normalcy

After a week of intense basketball, an energetic celebration following a 74-57 win in the Horizon League championship game and a rowdy four-hour bus ride home, one would think the first order of business for the Wright State players when they arrived back on campus at 2:45 a.m. Wednesday would be to get some sleep.

Instead, they fired up the DVR.

“We got back to the apartment and these guys put the game on,” junior Mark Hughes said, nodding toward senior Grant Benzinger and freshman Loudon Love during a press conference Thursday afternoon at the Setzer Pavilion.

“I knew I had class, so I couldn’t stay up,” Hughes added. “I went to sleep about 3:15. But some of them stayed up and watched the whole game again. I don’t know what time they got to bed.”

›› 5 takeaways from Wright State’s win in Horizon League championship game

The reason the Raiders rolled out of Detroit late Tuesday night after winning the title rather that Wednesday morning was so the players wouldn’t have to miss another day of classes.

But rather than an exhausting experience, going back to class was an exciting one for the players on a small campus where everyone knows who they are and what they accomplished.

›› Who could Wright State play in first round of NCAA tournament

“I sit in the back of class, so I walked in and sat down and tried not to draw to much attention,” Love said before being interrupted by coach Scott Nagy.

“You’re supposed to sit in front,” he said.

“People were turning around congratulating me,” Love said. “It’s a great feeling on campus because it’s a whole community that’s part of it.”

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All of the players and most of the students on campus were in elementary or middle school the last time Wright State made the NCAA tournament in 2007.

But there are faculty members who remember it well.

“I was walking in with the teacher and she was telling me about the last time we won a championship in 2007, and how great it was for the campus and all the publicity we got,” Hughes said. “She told me I was doing a good job, so that was pretty nice. Everyone came up to me patting me on the back, telling me ‘congrats’ and stuff.”

›› ARCHDEACON: NCAA-tournament bound Raiders believe in team, each other

Nagy told the players after Tuesday night’s win that was going to happen, and it would be important for them to gather themselves and show humility and that it would be his job “to bring them back down to earth.”

Thursday morning that process began.

“I got after them a little bit in practice (Thursday) morning, just to get them going again,” Nagy said. “It’s back to normal. It has to be back to normal. There’s going to be enough that’s going to be abnormal about this that when we get in practice and we do the other things, it has to be normal.”

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Springfield’s Moss, Taylor land on D-I All-Ohio basketball teams

Published: Wednesday, March 21, 2018 @ 1:59 PM
Updated: Wednesday, March 21, 2018 @ 4:59 PM

Springfield junior RaHeim Moss addresses a 51-45 defeat of Elder in a D-I district final at UD Arena on Sat., March 10, 2018. MARC PENDLETON / STAFF

Springfield High School teammates RaHeim Moss and Leonard Taylor have been named to the All-Ohio Division I boys high school basketball teams.

The Division I and II teams were announced on Tuesday by the Ohio Prep Sportswriters Association. The Division III and IV teams were released on Monday.

»RELATED: Wayne, Trotwood players picked for All-Ohio

»RELATED: Springfield coach, “we’ll be back”

Moss, a 6-foot-3 junior guard, was named to the second team. He led the Wildcats (21-5) in scoring at 16.2 points. Also a football standout at linebacker, he remains verbally uncommitted but continues to receive offers in both sports. The University of Cincinnati and Kentucky are among the programs to offer him in football.

Taylor, a 6-5 senior and three-year starter, averaged 12.9 points and led the Wildcats in rebounding (8.9). He signed to play football at UC.

»RELATED: Rams’ opposing coach, ‘They’re crazy athletic’

»RELATED: Ahrens, Barhorst earn top D-IV boys honors

Leonard Taylor (middle) and David Sanford secure a rebound. Moeller defeated Springfield 65-44 in a boys high school basketball D-I regional semifinal at Xavier University’s Cintas Center in Cincinnati on Wednesday, March 14, 2018. MARC PENDLETON / STAFF

Springfield handed Wayne its only regular-season loss. Both teams were knocked out of the playoffs in a D-I regional by Cincinnati Moeller.

Wayne senior Darius Quisenberry and Myles Belyeu, a senior at Trotwood-Madison, were first-team picks.

A 6-1 guard, Quisenberry averaged a team-high 18.5 points for Wayne (25-2). He played his final two seasons at Wayne after transferring from Tecumseh and has signed with Youngstown State.

»RELATED: Trotwood-Madison back to final four

»RELATED: Boys state final four pairings

Belyeu, a 6-4 guard, leads the Rams in scoring (25.2). A three-year starter, he has scored more than 1,500 career points. He will announce which team he’s signing with after this weekend’s D-II state final four in which the Rams will participate in for the second straight season.

Another junior, Samari Curtis of Xenia, was a D-I third-team pick. He was among the state’s leading scorers (30.4) and is verbally committed to Xavier.

»RELATED: Boys regional results

»RELATED: Girls state final four results

Landing on the D-II third team were Trotwood junior Amari Davis (21.2 points) and Meadowdale senior Jabali Leonard (23.0).

The players of the year were Dave Goodwin of Upper Arlington (D-I) and Pete Nance of Richfield Revere (D-II). Coaches of the year were Hilliard Bradley’s Brett Norris (D-I) and Chad Burt of Wauseon (D-II).

»RELATED: Moeller bumps Wayne off tourney trail

The Ohio Mr. Basketball is scheduled to be announced on Wednesday. Teams were chosen by statewide media panels and based on coaches’ nominations.

»FACEBOOK: For more high school sports you should like Marc Pendleton

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WATCH: Brewers reenact famous scene from 'The Sandlot' 

Published: Monday, March 19, 2018 @ 12:29 PM

Stephen Vogt knows how to celebrate after hitting a home run, and he turns in a memorable performance in a video the Milwaukee Brewers just released.
Stacy Revere/Getty Images
Stephen Vogt knows how to celebrate after hitting a home run, and he turns in a memorable performance in a video the Milwaukee Brewers just released.(Stacy Revere/Getty Images)

After 25 years, the Beast is back.

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The Milwaukee Brewers are known for churning out entertaining videos -- remember their bullpen dance-off against the Chicago Cubs? -- and spring training was no exception last week as several players contributed to a shot-by-shot reenactment of a famous scene from the 1993 movie, “The Sandlot.”

The 1993 comedy was about a group of friends who loved playing the game but only had one ball. So when one player hits the ball over the fence, where a snarling, mean dog lives, the game is apparently over. 

In the 2½-minute video, several players reprise the roles from the film, WTMJ reported. Stephen Vogt played Hamilton “Ham” Porter, who hits the home run. Brett Phillips plays Scotty Smalls, a newcomer who volunteers to retrieve the ball, while Eric Sogard has a memorable cameo as Squints.

Other players in the video include Christian Yelich as Benny, Hernan Perez as Yeah-Yeah, Jeremy Jeffress as Kenny, Josh Hader as Bertram, Chase Anderson (Tommy Timmons) and Jett Bandy (Timmy Timmons).

Plus, Hank the dog plays “the Beast.”

The scene is faithfully done, although Vogt bats left-handed. Ham bats right-handed in the 1993 film. And the Beast steals the scene.

Here is the original clip from the 1993 movie:

And here is what the Brewers do when they get bored in the bullpen:

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Hartsock Podcast: Interview with Reds’ Marty Brennaman

Published: Wednesday, March 21, 2018 @ 5:06 PM

WHIO-TV Sports Director Mike Hartsock spoke at length with Hall of Fame Cincinnati Reds announcer Marty Brennaman for the latest episode of his “Stay Right There” podcast. Get the latest on the Reds from one of broadcasting’s greats.

Catch the latest episodes of Mike Hartsock’s “Stay Right There” Podcast or catch up on previous episodes. 

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Here’s how the NFL will define a catch next year (hopefully)

Published: Wednesday, March 21, 2018 @ 4:53 PM

BALTIMORE, MD - SEPTEMBER 27: Tight end Tyler Eifert #85 of the Cincinnati Bengals carries the ball while free safety Kendrick Lewis #23 of the Baltimore Ravens defends in the second quarter of a game at M&T Bank Stadium on September 27, 2015 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Rob Carr/Getty Images
BALTIMORE, MD - SEPTEMBER 27: Tight end Tyler Eifert #85 of the Cincinnati Bengals carries the ball while free safety Kendrick Lewis #23 of the Baltimore Ravens defends in the second quarter of a game at M&T Bank Stadium on September 27, 2015 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)(Rob Carr/Getty Images)

Remember how the catch rules in the NFL have been a disaster the last few years? 

Apparently that might not be the case anymore. 

I hesitate to be too quick to rubberstamp the announcement made by NFL director of officiating Al Riveron, but I would say it’s OK to be optimistic things will be better next season. 

If the NFL competition committee recommendation is accepted, figuring out when a catch has occurred should be much easier. 

If you see a player obtain possession of the ball with two feet (or another body part) on the ground and make a football move, you will have seen a catch. 

How is that last part defined? 

A “football move” can include a third step, reaching or extending for the line to gain (or goal line presumably) or the ability to perform such an act. 

Absent is language about players “surviving the ground,” which is an area from which much of the confusion has come in recent years because for some reason rulesmakers thought the process should be different if a player is going to the ground than if he was not. 

A controversial non-catch by Steelers tight end Jesse James was among plays included in a video Riveron tweeted as an example of plays being reviewed as changes to the rules are considered. 

James brought the ball in with two feet down but lost it as he turned to try to stretch across the goal line. It was initially ruled a touchdown but overturned upon review because James had not maintained control of the ball after hitting the ground. 

This play, in a crucial late-season game between the Steelers and Patriots, was one of several high-profile examples of the current rules making sense to few people outside the league offices because extending the ball seems like “a football play,” but it was not being ruled as such. 

That is set to change.

The same ruling on a similar play cost Tyler Eifert a touchdown for the Bengals in a game at Baltimore in 2015. 

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