However, Vidic’s non-appearance was not expected and there was no immediate explanation from the club. There was no hint of any problem on Friday when Vidic attended the official unveiling of David Moyes as Sir Alex Ferguson’s successor. And while his absence may be connected to the treatment received by the Serbian on the chronic knee injury that ruled him out for virtually 12 months, any fresh problem would be a concern. In addition to Van Persie and De Gea, Shinji Kagawa will also be a late arrival, linking up with his team-mates in Japan on July 21 after a rest following his country’s Confederations Cup campaign. As anticipated, Robin van Persie and David de Gea both miss Saturday’s opener in Bangkok after being given additional time off following their summer international commitments, although they are due to join up in Sydney. And, just as David Moyes predicted, injury victims Chris Smalling (foot), Ashley Young (ankle) and Nani (broken nose) were also missing due to injury. Manchester United skipper Nemanja Vidic is a surprise absentee from the club’s pre-season touring squad. Press Association
Still, Martinez was happy with the performance, conceding that a few of the players on show at Craven Cottage may have worked their way in to the starting XI for Monday’s game against Newcastle. “It was a performance that showed we have players who are able to help the team to achieve our aims,” Martinez added. “I am satisfied with the performance and it has given me much to think about for the next few weeks. “We will take a lot of information from the game. Some of the players look really sharp and will benefit from it.” Martinez was delighted to see midfielder Darron Gibson make his return after suffering a serious knee injury during pre-season. “I thought it was important for Darron Gibson to get some playing time after so long away,” Martinez said. “We need that competition and that know-how. He is a vital player for us so it was great to see him get that time on the pitch and it will be very beneficial for him.” Everton fans were overjoyed when their club announced that they had signed Deulofeu on a season-long loan from Barcelona, but they have only seen fleeting glimpses of the winger since. Deulofeu has made two very brief substitute appearances in the Barclays Premier League, but the Spaniard terrorised Fulham’s defence on Tuesday night in the Capital One Cup with his trickery and pace. Roberto Martinez has assured Gerard Deulofeu he will have a big part to play in Everton’s season. Press Association Martinez wanted to use the competition to ease Deulofeu in to the English game, but with Everton now out following their 2-1 defeat to the Cottagers, the teenager will have to fight with the likes of Kevin Mirallas and Ross Barkley for a place in the Toffees’ Premier League side. Martinez had previously admitted Deulofeu was frustrated at his lack of game time so far in England, but the Everton manager insists the Spain Under-21 star will get his chance to shine in the Premier League once he has fully adapted to his new surroundings. “There’s a big gap in terms of physicality between the English and Spanish leagues – it’s a lot quicker here and there is a lot more contact, so for players who are artists with the ball like Gerard there will always be a period of adaptation,” Martinez said. “Gerard is doing that very well. He is making the difference when he is on the pitch. He is learning bit by bit, he is very quick and I am sure that in the next few months Gerard will play a very big part in this team.” Deulofeu is seen as one of the brightest prospects in Spain having come through the club’s famed La Masia academy. Last season Deulofeu scored 18 goals in 33 appearances for Barcelona B, who play in Spain’s second tier. The Spaniard was one of eight changes made by Martinez for Tuesday’s game in west London, which Everton lost after goals from Dimitar Berbatov and Darren Bent. Steven Naismith handed the Merseysiders the lead and Everton should have killed the game off from there, but they wasted numerous chances.
“I will never forget his performance in Moscow, which was instrumental in winning us qualification for Euro 2012. “Richard and his family, particularly his parents Dick and Phyllis, will always be welcome guests in Aviva Stadium. “On behalf of the Association, I would like to wish him and his family the very best for the future.” Republic of Ireland defender Richard Dunne has announced his retirement from international football. Dunne is currently on tour in Ireland with the QPR squad as they prepare for a return to the Premier League. The west London side have friendly matches against Shamrock Rovers on Saturday and Athlone Town on Tuesday. He continued: “I have represented Ireland since I was 15 years of age, and have thoroughly enjoyed all the highs and lows that have come with playing for my country. “I will continue to support the team as they embark upon their new campaign under Martin O’Neill, and have every faith that they will qualify for France 2016. “I’d like to thank everyone I worked alongside during my time with Ireland, from managers, to players, to backroom staff. I have so many great memories that will stay with me forever.” Republic boss O’Neill said: “Richard has been a remarkable player for both club and country. “I had the pleasure of working with him at Aston Villa, where he had a big influence on the field. “He has consistently given 100 per cent every time he has been called on by his country also. I wish him all the best in his club career.” Football Association of Ireland chief John Delaney said: “Richard has been a tremendous servant to his country and is truly a player for Ireland to be proud of. Press Association The 34-year-old QPR player made his debut for his country in 2000, going on to win 80 caps, the last of which came against Kazakhstan last October. Dunne told his club’s official website: “Retiring from international football has been an extremely difficult decision for me to make.”
Steve Bruce may be confident his Hull side have enough quality to avoid relegation but that has not stopped him labelling Saturday’s clash with Swansea a “cup final”. It is, of course, a familiar cliche for bosses to fall back on when battling the drop but December is an early first outing for the phrase. It is not hard to see where Bruce’s sense of urgency has come from though, with a sequence of one Barclays Premier League victory in the last 14 matches dragging the Tigers to second bottom in the table. Press Association A costly habit of conceding late goals, an apparent loss of solidity at the KC Stadium and an increasingly threadbare squad – ravaged by injury, suspension and Hatem Ben Arfa’s lack of dedication – make for an unhappy blend. And it is one Bruce knows must be changed sooner rather than later. “This one’s a cup final if we really want to put it down to that,” said Bruce, who guided the club to last season’s FA Cup showpiece at Wembley. “It’s a big game for us and a big opportunity. We’ve got to get a result, it’s as simple as that. We’ve had an awful run of fixtures, with some awful injuries to go with it, but we have to forget about what’s happened before and pick up a few points to get our season back up and running. “It’s a big, important time for us but there are a lot of clubs in the bottom half who’ll be saying the same thing.” There is, then, no doubt that Bruce is taking Hull’s predicament seriously. But despite the straits they find themselves in, with Michael Dawson out for a month, question marks over Mohamed Diame’s return to fitness and Tom Huddlestone starting a four-game suspension, Bruce remains optimistic. “It’s so close at the bottom and we know we’re capable of winning a couple of games, so I don’t think there’s any need to panic yet,” he said. “It’s been a frustrating season so far. We haven’t won enough games and we’ve probably drawn too many but I’m still convinced there’s enough quality in the squad to see it through and finish higher than last year (16th). “Away from home our tally is more than respectable considering who we’ve played so it’s about time we put our home record straight. We have two games in a week at home and it’s a different complexion if we can go and get something out of those games.” Ninth-placed Swansea head to Hull on the back of two straight league defeats and the omens ahead of their trip to the Humber are not good. They have failed to score on their three previous visits to the KC Stadium and a 1-0 defeat there in April ranks among one of their poorest performances under Garry Monk. “Every team in this league is a different challenge, the way they set up and the different personnel and styles they have,” Monk said. “It’s getting your team to concentrate on themselves but adjust enough to know where the threats are from the other team. “I would imagine they’re looking at this game to turn around their form. “They’ve got a very experienced manager who will be looking at how to get them back to winning ways and we expect a very difficult game. “Hull will be different to what we’ve played before, so the challenge for us is to perform well enough to take the points.”
— Mets relief pitcher Brad Brach (brahk) says he missed preseason camp because he tested positive for the coronavirus. Brach confirmed he and his pregnant wife both had COVID-19 and experienced mild symptoms, including loss of taste. Jenae Brach gave birth to healthy twin boys, Carson and Brody, on July 17. — Brewers shortstop Luis Urias has been cleared to return to baseball activity after testing positive for coronavirus before the start of Major League Baseball’s preseason summer camp. The Brewers are sending Urias to their secondary facility in Appleton, Wisconsin. — Reds infielder Matt Davidson has tested positive for COVID-19. He went on the injured list one day after he started the opener as a designated hitter. — The pandemic-delayed Major League Baseball opener was a hit on television. The Nationals-Yankees game on ESPN was the most-watched regular season game in baseball on any network in nine years. It averaged 4 million viewers according to Nielsen fast national ratings and peaked at 8:30 p.m. EDT with 4.48 million viewers. NFL-NEWS July 25, 2020 Thibodeau was the 2011 NBA Coach of the Year in Chicago and is a former Knicks assistant under Jeff Van Gundy.Mike Miller finished the season as interim coach after David Fizdale was fired 22 games into last season. In other NBA news:— Bucks reserve guard Pat Connaughton flew to Florida on Saturday after a positive coronavirus test had kept him from joining his teammates at Walt Disney World two weeks earlier. Connaughton and starting point guard Eric Bledsoe hadn’t been part of the Bucks’ original traveling party to Disney World because both had tested positive, though both players have said they were asymptomatic.— Zion Williamson will be out of quarantine by the time New Orleans plays in the first official game of the NBA restart at Walt Disney World. Whether the Pelicans will play him that night or not remains anyone’s guess. The NBA said Saturday that Williamson will have to serve a four-day quarantine for leaving the league’s Disney bubble on July 16 to tend to an urgent family matter. He returned to Disney last night and immediately went into quarantine. Associated Press The Brewers’ 8-3 win at Wrigley Field included a shouting between the two clubs that could be heard throughout the empty ballpark at the start of the fourth inning. Cubs All-Star catcher Willson Contreras seemed to be barking the loudest from the warning track in front of the dugout, and several players from both sides popped out onto dirt near their benches. Umpires jumped in and calmed things down quickly before players could cross the foul lines.The Brewers also made some noise with their bats as Christian Yelich (YEH’-lihch) slammed a two-run homer and Justin Smoak added a solo shot. Ben Gamel put Milwaukee ahead to stay with a two-run triple in the fourth.Lorenzo Cain was 3-for-4 with an RBI single for the Brew Crew.Elsewhere around the majors: Update on the latest sports Mahomes ready but apprehensive for campUNDATED (AP) — Kansas City quarterback Patrick Mahomes (mah-HOHMZ’) acknowledges there is “some risk” in returning to the team facility for training camp. But he says he’s comfortable with the protocols established by the NFL and its players’ union to ensure a safe environment. The Super Bowl MVP was at the facility Saturday along with rookies and select veterans, a day after the league and union agreed to a proposal opening camps in earnest next week. The players’ board of representatives voted to adopt changes to the collective bargaining agreement that provide for new training camp and roster rules, economics and protocols for operating amid the coronavirus pandemic, as well as an opt-out clause.Also around the NFL:— The Jets have traded disgruntled Jamal Adams to the Seahawks for fellow safety Bradley McDougald and a trio of high-round picks. Seattle sends a first-round pick in each of the next two drafts, along with a third-rounder in 2021. The Jets ship off a fourth-round selection in 2022. New York parts with a talented player whose relationship with the franchise quickly deteriorated because of a contract dispute. — Head coach Mike Zimmer says the Vikings are expecting running back Dalvin Cook to report on time for training camp. Cook is in the final year of his rookie contract and took a break from the virtual offseason program last month, seeking a new deal. He had 1,135 rushing yards and 519 receiving yards in 14 games last year. — Daniel Bard won in his first major league game in more than seven years, pitching 1 1-3 scoreless innings in relief for the Rockies in a 3-2 win over the Rangers. Bard stranded two runners in the fifth and worked around two more base runners in the sixth before getting Willie Calhoun on an inning-ending flyout to cap an 11-pitch at-bat. Colorado went ahead to stay with two runs in the fourth off Mike Minor, helped by two fielder’s choice plays and two errors.— The Royals pulled out a 3-2 win over the Indians on Maikel Franco’s sacrifice fly in the 10th inning. Alex Gordon opened the 10th as the runner on second and was bunted to third before scoring the tiebreaking run. Indians starter Mike Clevinger allowed just four hits over six innings and settled down after Jorge Soler (soh-LEHR’) and Salvador Perez in the top of the first.— JaCoby Jones crushed a two-run homer in the ninth inning to power the Tigers past the Reds, 6-4. Austin Romine and Miguel Cabrera homered to put the Tigers ahead, 4-3 in the seventh, but Cincinnati tied it on Curt Casali’s solo blast in the bottom of the inning. Joey Votto (VAH’-toh) and Freddy Galvis (GAL’-vees) also went deep for the Reds.MLB-NEWSNationals catcher Tres Barrera banned 80 games for drug test Werenski and Thompson each shot 3-under 68s to move to 15 under for the tournament. Charl Schwartzel shot a 66 in the third round at the TPC Twin Cities course, pulling even with Tony Finau for third place at 13 under. GOLF-BRITISH MASTERSParatore wins British Masters for 2nd European Tour titleNEWCASTLE, England (AP) — Renato Paratore has won the British Masters for his second career victory on the European Tour. The Italian golfer closed with a 2-under 69 containing his first bogeys of the week. Paratore was trying to become the first player to win a European Tour event without a bogey since Jesper Parnevik (YEHS’-pur PAR’-nek-vihk) in the 1995 Scandinavian Masters. — Brandon Lowe’s two-run triple snapped an eighth-inning tie in the Rays’ 4-1 triumph over the Blue Jays. Lowe also scored an insurance run on a back by Sam Gaviglio. Cavan Biggio went 2 for 3 with a walk, extending his on-base streak to a major league-best 31 consecutive games.— Anthony Santander and Renato Núñez each drove in two runs to help the Orioles hold off the Red Sox, 7-2 and even their season-opening series. Hanser Alberto finished with three hits, while Austin Hays and José Iglesias each added two. Alex Cobb was steady in his first start after missing most of last season with a hip injury, limiting Boston to a run and four hits while fanning six in 5 1/3 innings.— Leury (lay-OOR’-ay) García homered from both sides of the plate in helping Dallas Keuchel and the White Sox pound the Twins, 10-3. Edwin Encarnación belted a two-run drive as the White Sox bounced back nicely after losing 10-5 to the reigning AL Central champions on Friday night. Eloy Jiménez and James McCann also went deep for Chicago.— Dylan Bundy was sharp in his Angels debut, allowing three hits and carrying a shutout into the seventh inning of a 4-1 verdict over the Athletics. Juston Upton opened the scoring with a solo blast in the fourth, one inning before Andrelton Simmons and David Fletcher provided RBI doubles. Losing pitcher Sean Manaea (mah-NY’-ah) looked sharp early, retiring the first 11 batters on just 32 pitches before faltering.— Paul DeJong (deh-YUHNG’) hit a two-run single, Matt Carpenter added a two-run double and Tommy Edman delivered a two-run triple that capped the scoring in the Cardinals’ 9-1 dismantling of the Pirates.Paul Goldschmidt smacked a solo homer to back Adam Wainwright, who worked the first six innings of a combined three-hitter. Wainwright retired 14 of the final 15 batters he faced as the Cardinals beat the Pirates for the 12th time in their last 13 games. NHL-NEWSCrawford to Hawks after battling COVID-19UNDATED (AP) — Chicago Blackhawks goaltender Corey Crawford has revealed that he missed the start of training camp following a positive test for COVID-19. He said he was in quarantine at his place in Chicago.The 35-year-old Crawford skated with the team on Saturday and faced shots from teammates. His return is a big development for Chicago as it prepares to face the Oilers in a best-of-five qualifying series that begins on Aug. 1. — Tight end Adam Shaheen was traded to the Miami Dolphins by the Chicago Bears for a conditional late-round draft pick. Shaheen was slowed by injuries in his three seasons with the Bears, starting 13 games and catching four touchdown passes.NBA-NEWSAP source: Knicks close to deal to make Tom Thibodeau coachUNDATED (AP) — The New York Knicks are on the verge of hiring a new head coach.A person with knowledge of the details says the team is finishing a deal to make Tom Thibodeau (THIH’-buh-doh) their coach. ESPN first reported that the Knicks and Thibodeau were completing a five-year contract. UNDATED (AP) — Washington Nationals catcher Tres Barrera has been suspended for 80 games without pay by Major League Baseball after testing positive for an anabolic steroid.MLB says Barrera tested positive for the performance-enhancing substance DHCMT, the chemical compound used in a drug that fueled Olympic athletes in the former East Germany decades ago.Barrera said Saturday that he appealed his suspension but it was upheld by an arbitrator. In other MLB news:— Nationals pitcher and World Series MVP Stephen Strasburg has been scratched from what was supposed to be his first start of the season because of a nerve issue with his right hand. Nationals manager Dave Martinez said Strasburg was given an injection for the issue, likening it to “basically a cortisone shot.” He said Strasburg felt something was wrong with his hand during an exhibition game last week. In other NHL news:— Hurricanes All-Star defenseman Dougie Hamilton missed a second straight practice Saturday, and his status remains unclear as the team prepares for the return to play in the coming week. The team said on its website Wednesday that Hamilton left that day’s practice early in “some visible discomfort” and he didn’t practice Thursday. Hamilton broke his left leg in January and was sidelined until the NHL suspended the season because of the pandemic.PGA-3M OPENWerenski, Thompson remain co-leadersBLAINE, Minn. (AP) — Richy Werenski birdied three of the last four holes to erase a four-stroke deficit and pull even with Michael Thompson through three rounds of the 3M Open in Blaine, Minn. Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditMLB-RESULTSBarking Brewers win at WrigleyUNDATED (AP) — The Milwaukee Brewers and Chicago Cubs resumed their season-opening series on Saturday and demonstrated there’s no love lost between these local rivals. — The Nationals rolled to a 9-2 laugher over the Yankees behind Victor Robles, who contributed a two-run double and a two-run homer. Asdrubel (as-DROO’-bul) Cabrera and Michael A. Taylor also went deep for Washington in its first win since capturing the World Series last year. Robles and Cabrera each had three of the Nats’ 13 hits.— Wilmer Flores homered and the Giants beat the Dodgers, 5-4 to give Gabe Kapler his first win as San Francisco manager. Donovan Solano laced a two-run double for the Giants, who were outscored 17-2 in the first two games before avoiding their first 0-3 start in eight years. Dodgers starter and loser Alex Wood had trouble finding the plate, throwing 29 of his 67 pitches for balls over three innings. — The Astros beat the Mariners for the 15th straight time as Lance McCullers Jr. allowed two runs and five hits over six innings of a 7-2 victory. McCullers was pitching for the first time since undergoing Tommy John surgery that cost him all of last season. Yuli Gurriel (YOO’-lee gur-ee-EHL’) and George Springer homered for Houston, which beat Seattle on Friday after going 18-1 against them last year.— Phil Gosselin homered twice and Didi Gregorius went deep for the second straight game as the Phillies dumped the Marlins, 7-1. J.T. Realmuto added a three-run drive that helped Joe Girardi get his first win as Philadelphia’s manager. Zack Wheeler limited Miami to five hits over seven innings of his Phillies debut.— William Contreras delivered an RBI double that capped a three-run 10th in the Braves’ 5-3 comeback win over the Mets. The Mets led 2-1 in the ninth until Marcell Ozuna (oh-ZOO’-nuh) homered off Edwin Diaz with two out in the ninth. New York wasted a strong performance by Steven Matz, who fanned seven while holding Atlanta to a pair of hits over six innings. Paratore finished on 18 under overall, three strokes ahead of Rasmus Højgaard.
By Brian HomewoodLAUSANNE, Switzerland (Reuters) – Boxing should keep its place at next year’s Olympic Games but recognition of AIBA, the governing body of the sport’s amateur version, should be suspended, the International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) executive board recommended yesterday.The IOC said in a statement that it would instead set up a task force to organise the boxing competitions, including the qualification events to be held between January and May.The recommendations came as the IOC published a 30-page report following an inquiry into the finances and governance of AIBA which has been in turmoil for years.AIBA says it has undergone a profound reform programme in the last 18 months and done everything that has been asked of it but the IOC said that “there has been a lack of satisfactory progress”.“Today’s decision was taken in the interest of the athletes and the sport of boxing. We want to ensure that the athletes can live their dream and participate in the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020,” IOC president Thomas Bach told reporters.“At the same time, we offer a pathway back to lifting the suspension, but there needs to be further fundamental change.”The recommendations will be put to a full IOC session in Lausanne in June. The IOC added that AIBA’s status should be reviewed after the Games.AIBA said in a statement that it had “taken note” of the IOC report and would not make any comments until further clarification is made.“However, AIBA does look forward to working with the IOC in the future,” it added.The report said that “serious governance issues remain. … leading to serious reputational, legal and financial risks for the IOC, the Olympic Movement and its stakeholders”.It added that AIBA had been “unable to demonstrate a sustainable and fair management of refereeing and judging processes and decisions, increasing the lack of confidence that athletes can have in fair competitions”.While the IOC organises the Olympic Games as a whole, the federations run their own sports competitions within that framework.Suspension would rob AIBA of its main source of funding and be a devastating blow to the body which has organised Olympic boxing for 73 years.AIBA president Gafur Rahimov suspended himself from the post in March because of his presence on a U.S. Treasury Department sanctions list “for providing material support” to a criminal organisation. The Uzbek strongly denies the allegations.He has been replaced on an interim basis by Mohamed Moustahsane.The IOC confirmed the total athlete quota for boxing at the Tokyo Games would remain at 286 and the number of eight men’s events and five women’s events would be maintained, as previously approved.
KRIS UGARRIZA/Herald photoThey’ve faced preseason Heisman hopeful Chris “Beanie” Wells — he rushed for 168 yards in a 20-17 Ohio State victory.They’ve faced the Big Ten’s third-leading rusher — Penn State’s Evan Royster gained 60 yards on the ground in a 48-7 Nittany Lions blowout win.They’ve also faced Iowa’s Shonn Greene, the conference’s second-leading rusher — he pounded them for 217 yards and 4 touchdowns.Saturday, the Wisconsin Badgers (4-4, 1-4 Big Ten) travel to East Lansing, Mich., to take on the Big Ten’s No. 1 rusher, Michigan State’s Javon Ringer. Needless to say, the UW defense will have its hands full at Spartan Stadium all afternoon.“Javon Ringer is a Heisman-caliber running back,” UW middle linebacker Jaevery McFadden said. “What more could you ask for in terms of motivation?”Ringer, a senior, enters Saturday’s game with 1,373 yards and 16 touchdowns on 300 carries; all three are tops in the nation.“Javon Ringer is shifty; he’ll do whatever he wants,” said strong safety Jay Valai. “He’ll be in the hole, jump around, he’ll run through you. He’s a great running back, but we’ve got to come at him aggressively.”As for the Spartans’ game plan, the Wisconsin defense has an inkling of what they might see.“Ringer, Ringer, Ringer and more Ringer,” Valai said.“Stop him? More like slow him down. He’s a great player. I know he’s going to be ready for us, so we’ve got to be ready for him, or it could be bad.”No. 21 Michigan State (7-2, 4-1 Big Ten) is coming off of a 35-21 victory over Michigan at Ann Arbor, a game in which Ringer rushed for 194 yards and two scores on 37 carries. But the Badger defenders are aware that No. 23 isn’t the only threat they’ll face Saturday. Spartans senior quarterback Brian Hoyer threw for 282 yards and threw three touchdowns of his own against the Wolverines, rounding out a potent green and white attack.“If you concentrate on Ringer, they’ve got good play action passes and pretty good receivers that can catch the ball, too,” McFadden said. “Just because they’ve got Ringer back there doesn’t mean that’s all they’re going to use.”Hoyer has thrown for 1,623 yards and nine touchdowns on the season. The Spartans’ top four receivers all average over 15 yards per catch, proof of the play action success McFadden alluded to. But the UW defense knows offensive efficiency is impossible without a solid corps up front.“[Ringer’s] name is the one that goes into the paper, but that means his offensive line is doing something right, too,” defensive tackle Mike Newkirk said. “As a defensive line, that’s what we look at. They’ve got big guys, strong guys. These guys sustain blocks very well. They do what they do, and they’re not going to change from it all game.”The Badgers are coming off a double-digit win of their own, a 27-17 victory over Illinois — their first since Sept. 13 against Fresno State. The Wisconsin defense was the first to hold the Illini under 20 total points this season, as it forced three Juice Williams interceptions and held the dangerous Illinois spread offense in check all afternoon. But ask them about it, and they’ll tell you it’s ancient history.“The win was enjoyed, and then it was put away,” Newkirk said. “It was nice to get out of the rut, but now it’s behind us. It doesn’t have any affect on this week.Michigan State doesn’t care and neither should we.”In the last year-and-a-half, the Badgers are only 3-6 on the road under third-year head coach Bret Bielema. But to them, the venue makes no difference.“The field is 100 yards no matter where we go. Football is football,” Newkirk said. “It’s not any different for me.”Basically, Wisconsin only has one thing on its mind.“We’ve got to come out there and be road warriors,” McFadden said. “We’ve got to go in there, do what we’ve got to do and get out.”“We know we’ve got our backs against the wall; nobody’s giving us a chance,” Valai added. “We’re ready to prove people wrong and beat Michigan State Saturday.”
In early February, Rawan Tayoon joined hundreds of protesters at the Los Angeles International Airport to speak out against President Donald Trump’s ban on travelers from seven majority-Muslim countries. Tayoon, a sophomore majoring in political science, is a social activist who works with Syrian refugees, and said that she saw the impact Trump’s actions had on her peers.“I have a friend who is a refugee from Syria, who has been here for about a year and a half now and was waiting for his grandmother to get asylum and join them,” Tayoon said. “The reality for Syrian refugees is that the ban is still indefinite and my friend cannot go see her, nor can she come see them, and this was very emotional for me to see.”Adrian Hernandez | Daily TrojanTrump’s initial executive order barred citizens of Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen from entering the United States for 90 days, and blocked entry to Syrian refugees for 120 days. Though a recent amendment exempts green card holders and those with valid visas, many students at USC are still feeling the impact of the order. According to data collected by College Factual from the Department of Homeland Security in 2015, USC has 252 students on visas from the temporarily banned countries, the second-highest number of student visas of any university in the United States after Texas A&M University.Varun Soni, dean of the Office of Religious Life, said he was concerned when the order came out a few weeks ago because he saw that it had a dramatic impact on students and staff at USC. Soni said that approximately 200 of the affected students at USC were from Iran.“Fortunately, our semester starts early and so all our students were already on campus when the travel ban happened,” Soni said. “So, we did not have students who were stranded outside the United States.”However, many students began to question what the ban meant on their ability to travel internationally, the ability of their families to come visit them during graduation and its effect on future employment opportunities. Students were uncertain of the scope of the ban and what it meant along with how it was being applied.Somayeh, an international student from Iran who requested that her last name be withheld to protect her privacy, expressed her frustration with the executive order.“I felt very sad and disappointed,” Somayeh said. “None of these seven countries had any history of terrorism in the U.S. Seeing our family is the first need of human rights for everybody, regardless of which country you were born.”When the travel ban was first issued, many citizens of the affected countries were immediately detained and deported, creating chaos and confusion at airports around the United States. Somayeh said that she watched videos of the events as they were occurring and sympathized with the people who were sent back to their countries of origin.“It was very sad [to be] humiliated for carrying the name of particular countries [where] you were born,” Somayeh said. “The diversity and welcoming intelligent people made the U.S. a great country for now [but] not for the future.”The Association of American Universities, which represents over 60 leading research universities in the United States, including USC, denounced the ban shortly after it was announced. According to the statements released by the AAU, Trump should rescind the travel ban because of its negative impact on students and should reiterate the United States’ commitment to be the leader in the higher education of the world.“We cannot be the leader without freedom of thought movement,” Soni said. “We cannot recruit the best and brightest student scholars in the world if there is a travel ban, which seems to undermine our values as a research institute.”Apart from those who were from the seven countries, several students from other Muslim-majority countries also raised concerns, as they are still unsure if the travel ban would include other Muslim countries in the future or not. Soni said that a Pakistani student approached him because he wanted to visit Pakistan for his brother’s wedding, but Soni advised him not to. Soni also recently told an Indonesian student not to leave the country for a community service-based spring break trip.“It broke my heart to do so,” Soni said. “We are at a point where many of our students just have a bunch of bad options. Yes, it’s true that Pakistan is not on that list, but what happens if suddenly there is a new executive order when he is abroad?”Faisal, a Ph.D. student at USC, who requested that his last name be withheld to protect his privacy, has similar fears even though he is from Saudi Arabia, a country which is currently not included in the travel ban. Faisal is equally worried for his friends from Iran, as he thinks their future is now uncertain.“It’s really scary to come across such news,” Faisal said. “I am afraid to go back to see my family, afraid that while I am there they might include Saudi Arabia in the list of banned countries.”According to Soni, USC is a diverse global community with students from more than 130 different countries, representing every religion in the world and with different perspectives and experiences. Soni said that USC is working very carefully and closely with students, both at the undergraduate and graduate level, who have been or will be admitted from the seven countries affected by the travel ban to make sure they are accommodated.“You are part of the Trojan family and what it means to be a part of the Trojan family is that you are loved, valued, cherished and celebrated,” Soni said. “I don’t want the students to feel like they are alone in any of this, whether they are international, undocumented or Muslim students. I want them to know that the University cares a lot about them and that there are resources on campus to support them.”
Eleven members of the USC track & field team will compete in 14 individual events at the 2014 NCAA Track & Field Championships in Eugene, Oregon between June 11-14 after qualifying at the NCAA West Regional this past weekend at the University of Arkansas. Additionally, three relay teams will race on Hayward Field at the University of Oregon during the national championship.Making the leap · USC senior and hurdler Aleec Harris broke the West Regional and Pac-12 Conference record in the 110 meter hurdles event at the NCAA West Regional tournament in Fayetteville, Arkansas. – Photo Courtesy of USC Sports InformationOn the men’s team, senior Aaron Brown qualified in both the 100 meter and 200 meter; redshirt senior Aleec Harris qualified in the 110 meter hurdles; junior BeeJay Lee qualified in the 100 meter and senior Viktor Fajoyomi qualified in the decathalon. On the women’s team, junior Alexandra Collatz qualified in the discus; junior Melia Cox qualified in both the triple jump and 100 meter hurdles; senior Jessica Davis qualified in the 100 meter; redshirt sophomore Tynia Gaither qualified in both the 100 meter and 200 meter; freshman Amalie Iuel qualified in the 400 meter hurdles; junior Vanessa Jones qualified in the 400 meter and senior Oluwakemi Olonade qualified in the triple jump.In the relay races, both the men’s and women’s 4×100 meter relay as well as the women’s 4×400 relay team qualified. The men’s 4×100 team consists of Brown, Harris, Lee and redshirt senior Terrence Abram; the women’s 4×100 team is made up of Gaither, Davis, senior Loudia Laarman and sophomore Alexis Faulknor and Davis, Jones, junior Akawkaw Ndipagbor and senior Ashley Liverpool represented the 4×400 team.A total of 16 athletes will don cardinal and gold at the national championship.Harris set the Pac-12 record for fastest time in the men’s 110 meter hurdles with a time of 13.18 to win the event. Harris’s time broke a 36-year-old conference record. Greg Foster of UCLA set the previous record with a time of 13.22 in 1978. The time was a personal record for Harris and improved the school record of 13.32 that he had previously set. The time was also the fastest ran by any man in the country and second fastest in the world this year.Brown ran the fifth fastest time in the world this year in the 200 meter with a time of 20.16. A native of Toronto, Canada, Brown broke the Canadian national record that was set in 1991. Brown also ran a 10.12 to qualify in the 100 meter. Lee ran a 10.16 to qualify in the 100 meter. Lee finished in fifth place in the event, five hundredths of a second behind the winner. Brown finished in second place. Fajoyomi is the 15th of 24 seeds nationally in the men’s decathlon after scoring 7,489 points in regionals.Collatz qualified in the discus with a toss of 54.06 meters, finishing in fifth. Cox was the 12th and final runner to qualify in the 100 meter hurdles with a time of 13.44. She also finished in 11th place in the triple jump with a distance of 12.69 meters. Davis finished ninth in the 100 meter at 11.52. While Gaither’s time of 11.63 trailed Davis’s, Gaither’s heat ran against a sizeable headwind, and Gaither’s wind-adjusted time was good enough for ninth place. Gaither’s time of 22.88 placed her fifth in the 200 meter. Iuel’s 58.10 in the 400 meter hurdles placed her 12th in the event. Jones placed fourth in the 400 meter with her time of 52.15. Olonade also placed ninth in the triple jump with her leap of 12.72 meters.The men’s 4×100 meter relay team finished in ninth place with a time of 39.59. The women’s 4×100 meter relay team ran a 43.55 to finish in third place. The women’s 4×400 meter relay team placed fifth with at 3:31.94.The team is led by Caryl Smith Gilbert, who was named director of track and field last June following the retirement of Ron Allice. Allice led the Trojans to 32 individual national championships during his 19-year tenure as the program’s head coach and also coached the women’s team national championship in 2001. Smith Gilbert was a former All-American sprinter at UCLA and was the head coach of the University of Central Florida’s women’s track and cross country teams before joining USC.
The USC Sports Business Association hosted Leigh Steinberg, one of the most influential sports agents in all of sports, on Tuesday night at the Ronald Tutor Campus Center.Steinberg is more than just a top-notch agent — he is a pioneer in the industry and serves as a role model for sports agents everywhere. He is a distinguished public speaker who took the time to stop by USC this week to relay his vast wealth of information from his 30 years of experience in the industry. He also discussed the ever-changing sports world and the many opportunities for college students looking to get their foot in the industry door.Steinberg recounted his experiences with former star athletes from various sports. He even offered an anecdote about one of his recent clients, Pittsburgh Steelers’ quarterback Ben Roethlisberger.Steinberg referenced two core values to which he adheres: treasure relationships, especially family, and try to make a meaningful impact on the world and help people who cannot help themselves.Throughout the presentation, Steinberg stressed the idea that athletes can be the best role models for others. He spoke about how one athlete’s voice on a certain issue often carries more weight than the voices of one thousand other authorities ever could.His impressive list of past clientele includes—but is not limited to—Steve Bartkowski, Warren Moon, Troy Aikman, Steve Young, Edgerrin James and Oscar de la Hoya. While working with these star athletes, Steinberg challenged these professionals to put together programs for the public that would focus on something near and dear to their hearts in order to make a positive impact on others.“Athletes can also be role models in terms of messaging,” Steinberg said.Not only did Steinberg mention the importance of messaging as a cultural symbol, but he also delved into the current state of relationships between professional athletes and their agents.“These athletes are better protected than ever before,” he said. “Athletes select better and better agents, and they select financial planners that will help them with budgeting, that will help them with long-term planning, understanding the tax system—the goal is to empower the player.”Steinberg noted that an understanding of human psychology has done wonders for him in terms of helping his clients.“The most important skill I could ever pass on is psychology,” he said. “If you can understand human motivation—what makes people act the way they do—and if you have great listening skills, you can draw someone else out and get beyond the surface of what they are saying. Peel the layer of the onion back until you are actually speaking about what’s critical to that person. It takes being patient. It takes listening. It takes a sense of comfort. Once you can put yourself in the heart and mind of the other person, you’ll be successful in whatever you do in life because you can craft win-win negotiations. You can craft win-win situations.”Steinberg explained that in order to understand others, though, one must first understand oneself. He explained that listening to and understanding someone else’s system are essential pieces to the puzzle that is healthy human interaction and negotiation. He described how making a list of priorities in one’s own life is a great way to help others because when someone knows what is critical in life for himself or herself, it becomes that much easier to understand what is critical in life for someone else.Psychology is key because people are people. This translates to every sport and to every phase of life. “At the end of the day, it’s people,” Steinberg said. “What is universal is understanding people’s real needs—what their anxieties and fears are and their greatest hopes and dreams. It takes going below the surface. This whole area of sports business is an area where the best and brightest can still make an impact.”As far as his goals for working with athletes, Steinberg has exemplified patience, a key to avoiding conflict and working together with his clients to ensure efficiency and effectiveness. “The goal,” he said, “is to stimulate the best in individual athletes’ lives and to make the sport better.”Steinberg has made his mark on the sports world as one of the finest agents in the business, but he left the audience of USC students on Tuesday night with some fantastic advice to keep in mind, regardless of which career fields these youngsters ultimately pursue. “If you believe that what you are doing matters,” he said, “you’ll have energy and enthusiasm to spare.”USC senior Jake Kelfer, president of the USC Sports Business Association , is preparing to leave college life, but not before taking a tidbit or two from Mr. Steinberg with him.“He said to stand out,” Kelfer said. “Find a way to distinguish yourself from everyone else, and that’s something that I have really focused on and tried to find new ways to really stand out and provide value to the company.”Senior Skylar Dunn also felt the presentation was very informative and that Mr. Steinberg was very personable.“I didn’t expect him to get up here and really talk about his life and his business and give us so much insight into the sports agent life,” Dunn said. “I think Leigh kind of stood up here tonight and told us that his [secret] was being able to listen and build relationships with people.”