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Published: Friday, October 06, 2017 @ 1:02 AM
— Organizers leading a North American bid to host the 2026 World Cup trimmed its list of potential host cities to 32 on Wednesday, and 254 cities in the United States remain in the running as venues for soccer’s showcase event, The Washington Post reported.
The U.S. front-runners include Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Seattle and Washington, the Post reported. Other American cities in the running were Baltimore; Charlotte, North Carolina; Cincinnati; Denver; Detroit; Kansas City, Missouri; Las Vegas; Minneapolis; Nashville, Tennessee; Orlando, Florida; Phoenix; Salt Lake City; and Tampa, Florida.
U.S. cities eliminated from consideration were Birmingham, Alabama; Cleveland; Indianapolis; Jacksonville, Florida; New Orleans; Pittsburgh; and San Antonio, Texas. The two Canadian cities dropped from the list were Regina and Ottawa.
The World Cup was last staged in North America during the summer of 1994.
If the North American bid is successful, the United States would stage 60 matches in about a dozen venues, the Post reported. Mexico and Canada would have 10 games apiece.
All three Mexican bidding cities (Mexico City, Guadalajara and Monterrey) are widely expected to make the final cut. Canada will probably settle for two venues, with Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal and Edmonton in the running.
Representatives from the remaining cities will meet in Houston next month for a working session with the United Bid Committee. FIFA — soccer’s international governing body — will announce the winner in June, the Post reported.
Published: Wednesday, January 17, 2018 @ 5:45 AM
— One after one, gymnasts and other victims of former USA Gymnastics team doctor Larry Nassar, 54, stepped forward in a Michigan courtroom Tuesday to recount the sexual abuse and emotional trauma they say he inflicted on them as children.
U.S. Olympians Simone Biles, Aly Raisman and Gabby Douglas are among the many women to accuse Nassar of abuse.
Nearly 100 victims are expected to address the court during the four-day sentencing hearing.
However, former gold medalist McKayla Maroney may not speak out.
In December 2016, Maroney signed a confidential settlement with the group that trains U.S. Olympic gymnasts to keep allegations that she was sexually abused by Nassar a secret.
The settlement included nondisclosure and non-disparagement clauses and Maroney or her parents could be sued for more than $100,000 for violating the agreement. The suit seeks to invalidate those provisions under a California law that prohibits settlements in civil cases that could result in criminal sex offense charges.
Chrissy Teigen, who is from Snohomish, Washington, is offering to pay Maroney's possible fine so Maroney can speak out against Nassar.
The entire principle of this should be fought - an NDA to stay quiet about this serial monster with over 140 accusers, but I would be absolutely honored to pay this fine for you, McKayla. pic.twitter.com/lsBEgEqZpD— christine teigen (@chrissyteigen) January 16, 2018
On Tuesday, Teigen tweeted the following about the fine:
"The entire principle of this should be fought – an NDA to stay quiet about this serial monster with over 140 accusers, but I would be absolutely honored to pay this fine for you, McKayla."
Maroney said Nassar's abuse started in her early teens and continued for the rest of her competitive career.
– The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Published: Tuesday, January 16, 2018 @ 9:32 PM
BOSTON — JoJo White, who played with the Celtics from 1969 to 1979 and was enshrined in the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2015, passed away at the age of 71.
News of White's passing was first reported by the Boston Herald's Steve Bulpett, who received word from one of White's former teammates.
The news was confirmed by the Celtics shortly before the team's game against New Orleans Tuesday night.
White joined the Celtics after a successful college career at Kansas. He was named to the NBA All-Rookie team in 1970, was named an All-Star seven times and had his No. 10 retired by the Celtics in 1982.
We are terribly saddened by the passing of the great Jo Jo White. He was a champion and a gentleman; supremely talented and brilliant on the court, and endlessly gracious off of it.— Boston Celtics (@celtics) January 17, 2018
Full statement: https://t.co/sYgSvZJu0A pic.twitter.com/1Eu8G2Qr8a
White averaged 21 points per game in the Celtics six-game win over the Phoenix Suns in the 1976 NBA Finals. He was named Finals MVP.
He played for six Celtics teams that reached the playoffs. He had a 13-year career in the NBA, playing two years with the Golden State Warriors and one with the Kansas City Kings after leaving the Celtics. He averaged 20.2 points per game during his career.
Jojo WHITE😢😢😢😢— Paul Pierce (@paulpierce34) January 17, 2018
Published: Tuesday, January 16, 2018 @ 5:20 PM
— Controversy has hit the Winter Olympics before the torch has been lit in South Korea, as four U.S. Olympians — plus one “furious” ice skater who didn’t end up making the cut — preempted a White House invite from President Donald Trump by turning it down.
Skiers Gus Kenworthy and Lindsey Vonn, and figure skaters Nathan Chen and Adam Rippon have all said publicly that they will not accept a White House invite from the president in the event that they receive one.
Figure skater Ashley Wagner said the same, but she didn’t make Team USA.
Kenworthy and Rippon, who are both openly gay, said that they do not support Trump’s policies and do not want to appear that they do by visiting the White House.
“I am very proud to represent the U.S. but I don’t stand by Trump and his cabinet and their policies,” Kenworthy said. ”I do not want to feign approval for policies that are in place and things that are being pushed at the moment, by going. If I was invited I would decline my spot.”
Rippon said that he felt it is his “duty” not to go.
“Athletes are given a really special platform. It’s our duty, as athletes, to be role models. I won’t go to the White House,” Rippon told the BBC. “I won’t go because I don’t think somebody like me would be welcome there. I know what it’s like to go into a room and feel like you’re not wanted there.”
USA Today reported that Nathan Chen and Ashley Wagner would also decline an invite. In Wagner’s case, it is moot since she did not qualify for Team USA.
Wagner notably missed out on an Olympic appearance, said that she was “furious” about the decision-making by the judges and that she believed that she wasn’t treated fairly.
“I’m furious. I am absolutely furious. I know when I go and I lay it down, and I absolutely left one jump on the table. But for me to put out two programs that I did at this competition, as solid as I skated, and to get those scores, I am furious, and I think deservedly so,” she said. “I am absolutely OK with [judges] being strict on my [jump] rotations […] but you know it needs to be across the board. I don’t necessarily feel like it’s been that way at this event, so we’ll see how things pan out.”
The U.S. Figure Skating selection committee responded that the judges “absolutely made the right call.”
Wagner later changed her tune.
Lindsey Vonn said as early as the beginning of December that she hoped to “represent the people of the United States, not the president.”
When asked if she would accept an invite she replied “Absolutely not.”
Published: Monday, January 15, 2018 @ 4:33 PM
— An Ohio man has gained notoriety in recent weeks, thanks to a college football coach with the same name.
Jeremy Pruitt of Dayton was mistaken on Twitter by football fans as being the new coach of the University of Tennessee football team, The Knoxville News Sentinel reported. Another Jeremy Pruitt was named Tennessee’s football coach on Dec. 7.
The mix-up began in November, when rumors emerged that Pruitt the football coach was rumored to be a candidate for the Mississippi State University football job before he took the Tennessee position.
A mistaken Mississippi State fan reportedly sent the Pruitt from Dayton a message on Twitter, prompting him to then tweet about the mix-up.
“No way I’m getting tweeted about accepting the Miss State coaching job lol,” Dayton’s Pruitt wrote.
No way I’m getting tweeted about accepting the Miss State coaching job lol— Jeremy Pruitt (@jgroove1) November 27, 2017
A columnist at the Tuscaloosa News then retweeted the tweet to his thousands of followers, causing Dayton’s Pruitt to receive dozens of tweets from Mississippi State fans, most of whom realized the mix-up.
Since then, Pruitt has gained thousands of followers on Twitter and he has jokingly changed his profile and cover photos to include Mississippi State logos and images. Pruitt has told news outlets that he is originally from Columbus and is actually an avid fan of Ohio State University.
Along with his explosion of online followers, Dayton’s Pruitt has also received mentions on TV from ESPN and on the sports website SB Nation.
And the “other” Jeremy Pruitt? Here is his introductory news conference when he was named the Vols’ head coach: