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Published: Wednesday, December 06, 2017 @ 9:34 AM
— Everyone involved in making the rules and handing out punishments in the NFL needs to be fired.
These folks obviously don’t know what they don’t know.
Suspending George Iloka and JuJu Smith-Schuster for hits already penalized during Monday night’s Steelers win in Cincinnati is excessive and ridiculous.
It is clearly a public relations move by a league that doesn’t know what it doesn’t know about PR either because if anything it just makes the NFL look worse than if it did nothing.
Much like Jabrill Peppers of the Browns a week before, Iloka and Smith-Schuster were caught doing football things.
Iloka was trying to knock the ball loose to prevent a touchdown while Smith-Schuster was making a block on an active defender who reasonably still had a chance to make a tackle.
Both acts used to be legal but aren’t anymore because the NFL thinks it can convince the public the game isn’t really that dangerous if it just throws enough flags for stuff that looks bad regardless of intent.
(Or more likely they’re just trying to provide themselves legal cover when accused of not taking care of the players who don’t want to be taken care of in that way.)
Could both of them have done it less violently? Probably.
But violence is part of football.
Were they both trying to send a message with their hits? Probably — especially Smith-Schuster given his reaction and the recipient of the blow.
I am for limiting unnecessary roughness in the most extreme forms (intentionally hitting someone in the head, from behind, trying to take out knees, late hits, etc.), but I don’t think deciding to fire off punishment at everything in the gray area of the rules is productive at all.
Meanwhile, Rob Gronkowski gets the same punishment for something that happened after a play and was far more dangerous and out of line.
Regardless of how he might try to explain himself, what Gronkowski did was not a football play at all. He shouldn’t play again this season. There is no excuse for his action.
He saw someone who was literally defenseless (not the NFL’s moronic interpretation of that word) and with time to think about it did something that can only be interpreted as intended to hurt his opponent.
And beyond that, everyone seems to have already forgotten about the hit from Monday night that actually put a player in the hospital.
Unfortunately, Steelers linebacker Ryan Shazier has a history of hitting people with the crown of his helmet. When he grabbed his back immediately, I thought he injured his spine and feared he had cracked vertebrae.
I didn’t need to be a doctor to know that was possible — I just had to remember a decades old video called, “See What You Hit” that explained how the physics of how that works.
The bones in the neck and back line up when a tackler goes in face down. That exposes the spine and can lead to everything getting dangerously compressed. Lots of things can go wrong then because that’s not how the body is designed to function.
And yet for all of the obviously warranted concern about Shazier now, those are hits that are never talked about even though they are the most dangerous of all.
Published: Saturday, March 17, 2018 @ 8:05 PM
— Gonzaga showed during the last five minutes in its 90-84 win over Ohio State why its reached nine consecutive Sweet 16s.
After trailing 15-0 to start the game and 11 points, Ohio State rallied and took the lead for most of the second half, until Gonzaga rallied, made its free throws in the final moments.
Keita Bates-Diop scored 28 points, hit 8-of-10 free throws to lead Ohio State in scoring. Kam Williams scored 19 and C.J. Jackson 18.
But the Buckeyes had no defensive answers for Zach Norvell Jr. Norvell scored six 3-pointers and finished with 28 points and four assists. Rui Hachimura scored 25 and had four blocks. He scored five points in the final 15 seconds to put the game away.
Published: Saturday, March 17, 2018 @ 8:41 PM
KETTERING — Ahead big early, Trotwood-Madison withstood a strong Cincinnati Hughes comeback to win a boys basketball regional championship 84-74 on Saturday afternoon at Fairmont’s Trent Arena.
»RELATED: Moeller bumps Wayne off tourney trail
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Trotwood (25-3) qualifies for the Division II high school state final four for the season straight season. Rams will play Byesville Meadowbrook (22-6) in a D-II state semifinal at 10:45 a.m. Friday at Ohio State University’s Schottenstein Center in Columbus. Meadowbrook advanced with a 36-31 defeat of John Glenn also on Saturday.
The other state semi will feature defending D-II state champ Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary (19-8) against Lexington (23-5) at 2 p.m. Friday. The semi winners advance to the Saturday, March 24 championship at 5:15 p.m.
Akron SVSM upset Trotwood on a last-second shot in last year’s D-II state semifinals, 62-60. The Rams had won a regular-season matchup with the Irish by 39 points.
»RELATED: Trotwood responds to South’s challenge
»RELATED: Springfield coach, “we’ll be back”
Trotwood raced to a 20-point lead late in the first half against Hughes, out of the Cincinnati Metro Conference. The Big Red made a second-half run, mainly benefitting from Trotwood’s free throw inaccuracy (23 of 45).
Myles Belyeu led Trotwood with 24 points. Amari Davis added 18 points and Carl Blanton 17.
»RELATED: Boys regional pairings/results
»RELATED: Girls state final four pairings/results
Hughes (24-4) received 20 points apiece from Giovanni Santiago and D.J. Brewton. A.J. Smith added 18 points.
It was the first time in six postseason matchups the Rams didn’t post a blowout win. Trotwood will take an 18-game win streak into the final four, its fourth and all since the 2006 Rams were runner-up in D-I. Among the most winningest big-school area programs the last 20 years, Trotwood has never won a state title.
»TWITTER: You should like @MarcPendleton
The Rams also are in contention for a rare football/basketball state-title double. Trotwood completed a 15-0 season by winning a D-III state football championship last December.
Published: Sunday, March 11, 2018 @ 10:51 AM
Updated: Wednesday, March 14, 2018 @ 10:46 PM
— BOYS REGIONAL BASKETBALL
D-IV semifinals at Fairmont Trent Arena, Kettering
Marion Local 55, Catholic Central 33
Fort Loramie 48, Russia 45
D-I semifinals at Xavier University, Cintas Center
Cin. Moeller 65, Springfield 44
Wayne 56, Cin. Princeton 49
D-III semifinals at Trent Arena
Cin. Deer Park 81, Cin. Purcell Marian 70 OT
Cin. Madeira 70, Cin. North College Hill 56
»RELATED: All-Southwest District boys
D-II semifinals at Trent Arena
Trotwood-Madison 79, Columbus South 60
Cin. Hughes 68, Cin. Woodward 46
»RELATED: Dunbar’s tourney journey ends
D-I final at Cintas Center
Cin. Moeller 65, Wayne 53
D-IV final at at Trent Arena
Marion Local 62, Fort Loramie 47
D-II final at Trent Arena
Trotwood-Madison 84, Cin. Hughes 74
D-III final at Trent Arena
Published: Sunday, March 11, 2018 @ 10:05 AM
— GIRLS STATE BASKETBALL
At OSU’s Schottenstein Center, Columbus
Ottoville 44, New Washington Buckeye Central 25
Minster 46, Waterford 31
Versailles 63, Elyria Catholic 47
Col. Africentric 50, Ottawa-Glandorf 37
Gates Mills Gilmour Academy 47, Bellbrook 40
Toledo Rogers 62, New Philadelphia 57
Solon 52, Wadsworth 31
Pickerington Central 62, Mason 48
TV: Spectrum Ch. 311, 1311
D-IV, Minster 63, Ottoville 48
D-III, Col. Africentric 53, Versailles 47
D-II, Toledo Rogers 51, Gates Mills Gilmour Academy 37
D-I, Pickerington Central (27-2) vs. Solon (27-2), 8:30 p.m.