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Thursday Sports Update…Rays Hot, Football Tix, More…

By on July 24th, 2014

The Tampa Bay Rays continue to play great baseball, Gator football single game tickets go on sale and more in our Thursday Sports Update…

** In baseball, the Tampa Bay Rays move to within five games of the elusive .500 mark after blanking St.Louis 3-0 Wednesday.   The Rays are off today.

** Atlanta moves to within a game of Washington in the NL East with a 6-1 win over the Miami Marlins; the teams play again today.

** Single game football tickets for Gator home games are now on sale.   They are available on a first come, first served basis.

** The University of Georgia has dismissed sophomore defensive lineman Jonathan Taylor from the team after reports surfaced that he has been charged with allegedly using his hands to choke and hit his girlfriend.

** Former South Carolina wide receiver Sidney Rice has announced his retirement from the NFL.   Rice was productive in his short career but he suffered numerous injuries and concussions that led to his retirement.

** The Tour de France continues today.

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Wednesday Sports Update: Baseball, Football, Hoops!

By on July 23rd, 2014

A little of this and a little of that in our Wednesday Sports Update with a lot of current and former Gators in the news today…

** In baseball, Tampa Bay beats St.Louis 7-2 and Miami nips Atlanta 6-5; both match ups take place again tonight.

** Former Gator pitcher Paco Rodriguez has been optioned to Triple A by the Los Angeles Dodgers in a roster move.

** Former Gator basketball player Erik Murphy reportedly has been traded by the Utah Jazz to the Cleveland Cavaliers in a multi-player swap designed to give the Cavs more cap room to sign Kevin Love.

** Former Gator football player Darrin Kitchens has been released by the Buffalo Bills.

** Jacksonville Jaguar wide receiver Ace Sanders is facing a four game suspension; Sanders would not disclose the reason for the suspension other than to say he has some “personal issues” he is trying to deal with right now.

** The Tour de France continues with its 17th stage today.

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British Open, Baseball, Football In Sports Update

By on July 17th, 2014

One of golf’s major tournaments gets underway, big league baseball set to resume and SEC Football Media Days winds down in our Thursday Sports Update…

** The British Open is now underway and the action will take place all weekend at Royal Liverpool In Hoylake, England.   You can see the action early (like at 6 and 7 am) if you want to watch it on TV.

** Major League Baseball resumes regular season activity Friday after the All-Star break.   Atlanta will play Philadelphia, Miami hosts San Francisco and the Tampa Bay Rays will play in Minnesota this weekend.

** SEC Football Media Days has its final day today in Hoover, Alabama.   Alabama, Ole Miss, Georgia and Kentucky will be at the podium with coaches and players.

** NFL training camps are starting to open around the country.   The Jacksonville Jaguars have come to a contract agreement with former USC wide receiver Marquise Lee as well.

** Former Gator Delisha Milton-Jones will miss the rest of the WNBA season after she hurt her Achilles tendon; she plays for the Atlanta Dream.

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SEC Football Media Days; Second Day Recap

By on July 16th, 2014

Day Two of SEC Football Media Days is in the books as South Carolina, Mississippi State, Texas A&M, and Tennessee all took turns on the podium speaking about their programs.

Steve Spurrier, head coach of the University of South Carolina, began the proceedings. The Gamecocks are coming off its third-straight 11-2 campaign, finishing fourth in both major polls, the highest national finish in school history. Spurrier says he wants his team to continue to dominate.

“Our goals have been to win the SEC, win the division, win a bunch of games, win the bowl game, and finish in the top ten. The last several years we have managed everything except winning the division and winning the SEC.”

Spurrier says the key to their success is to win tight games.

“We have to continue winning close games. If you win most of your close games then you can win 11 (games). That is how we have done it the last three years.”

After South Carolina finished with their comments, Dan Mullen, head coach of Mississippi State spoke about his team. Mullen is entering his sixth season as head coach of the Bulldogs and finished last season with a 7-6 (3-5 SEC) record. Mullen says he is looking to build off last season’s late success.

“I’m excited about getting into this season with our team from last year with three straight wins. That was the first time that happened in a long time at Mississippi State. It gave us a lot of momentum coming into this off-season right now. Our guys are anxious about getting back out on the field, anxious to get back out there and go play after how positive we finished last year.”

Dak Prescott, a junior dual-threat quarterback for Mississippi State, also discussed his team; he leads all returning SEC quarterbacks in rushing touchdowns and yards. Prescott says it nice to be known, but he has his own expectations he will try to meet this season.

“I have high expectations for myself. It’s nice to know other people are starting to notice and say my name but that doesn’t really mean anything to me. I’m going to continue to do what I do, work hard, get better, and be the best quarterback I can.”

Texas A&M was up next and head coach Kevin Sumlin spoke about the direction of his team after its 9-4 last season finish. The Aggies won the Cotton Bowl in Sumlin’s first season at A&M, followed by the Chick-Fil-A Bowl last season. Sumlin says his team is heading in the right direction.

“We haven’t accomplished everything we’ve wanted to accomplish over the last couple years but I think there is no doubt that we are headed in the right direction. Our university is giving us the opportunity, the means, and the support to put us on the track to be extremely successful. ”

Tennessee was the last team to attend SEC Football Media Days on Tuesday with its head coach, Butch Jones. Jones is heading into his second season with the Volunteers, with his signature win coming last October over the Gamecocks. Jones says he has high expectations for his young roster.

“We talk about the power of one; one unity of purpose, one common commitment, taking it one day at a time, one practice at a time, and one snap at a time. This is because we are going to be so youthful. I think they can see the progress that we are making. If we continue to focus on that process and continue to work to get better each and every day, we’re going to like where this football team ends up.”

On Wednesday, Missouri, LSU, and Arkansas will be at the podium.

To listen to audio from the story, click below:

Spurrier 1

Spurrier 2

Mullen 1

Prescott 1

sumlin 1

Butch 1

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AL Wins MLB All Star Game; SEC Football Media Days, Wade Returns To Heat In Sports Update

By on July 16th, 2014

Even in a slow sports time there is a lot to talk about today in our Wednesday Sports Update…

** The American League beats the National League 5-3 in the All-Star Game on Tuesday night.   Yankee shortstop Derek Jeter gets a rousing sendoff in his final All-Star Game appearance and he had two hits in the game as well.   Angels outfielder Mike Trout was named the MVP.

** SEC Football Media Days continues today in Alabama.  Missouri, Arkansas and LSU take the podium today.

** In NBA news, Dwyane Wade returns to the Miami Heat with a new two year deal and former Gator Mike Miller is signed to help LeBron James with the Cleveland Cavaliers in a two year deal.

** Longtime Alabama gymnastics coach Sarah Patterson is stepping down after 36 years on the job.   The Crimson Tide gymnastics program is one of the best in the country and has won national titles under Patterson.  Assistant Dana Duckworth will take over.

** The British Open starts tomorrow with Phil Mickelson as defending champ but all eyes seem to be on the return of Tiger Woods to the field from injury.

** NFL training camps are starting to open with the NFL season not too far away.   Baltimore and Buffalo are a couple of the first teams to open camps.

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SEC Football Media Days; First Day Recap

By on July 15th, 2014

SEC Football Media Days has officially taken over Hoover, Alabama. On Monday, Auburn, Florida, and Vanderbilt all took turns on the podium speaking about their programs.  SEC  Commissioner Mike Slive began the proceedings with some opening remarks on what he hopes the new NCAA model will look like.

“We have created the initiative to restructure the NCAA in accordance with our vision for the 21st century with the support of student athletes at its core,” Slive said.  ”The vision includes the NCAA’s enactment of a governing system that will provide greater autonomy for the SEC and the other four conferences for the benefit of student athletes.”

After Slive finished with his comments, Guz Malzahn, head coach of the Auburn Tigers, spoke about his team.  Malzahn is coming off his first year as the head coach of the Tigers in which he led them to the BCS National Championship Game. Malzahn says the goal for his team this year is to be more balanced.

“Our big goal offensively really was balance, we want to be more balanced. We were very good at running the football. We really worked hard on trying to make defenses pay for rolling an extra safety down and taking chances,” he said.  “So that was kind of our mindset, Coach Lashlee (offensive coordinator) and his staff did a very good job of doing that.”

Florida was next and all eyes became fixed on Gator head coach Will Muschamp, quarterback Jeff Driskel, defensive lineman Dante Fowler Jr., and cornerback Vernon Hargreaves III.  This year there is added pressure on Muschamp after Florida comes off a 4-8 season, their worst season since 1979. Despite Muschamp being on the “hot seat,” he still feels confident heading into the upcoming season.

“There will be a lot of chatter about hot seat business and that’s part of it and the way you combat that is having a good football team which we’re going to have, and winning football games is what we’re going to do,” he stated.

Muschamp believes quarterback Jeff Driskel will benefit from their new up tempo, shotgun spread offense installed by new offensive coordinator Kurt Roper. Driskel said he’s looking forward to showcasing the new scheme this season.

“I think the game’s just moving towards having to score points and you want to get in as many plays as possible, so that’s kind of Coach Roper’s mindset,” Driskel said.  “He’s a positive coach and he’s going to put players in position to be successful. So we’re really lucky to have Coach Roper and we’re excited to get going in camp.”

Although most of the talk on Monday was about their new offense, one thing still remains; Muschamp is still about defense. Florida defensive lineman Dante Fowler Jr. echoed that viewpoint.

“He’s a defensive minded coach and that’s what really caught my eye when I was in high school.” Fowler said.  “He’s a great defensive minded coach, the plays that he has drawn up, just the way he works around his defense. He’s very versatile.”

Fans will have the chance to get their first glimpse of this rejuvenated football team when they will begin eight open practices starting Thursday, August 7th. The Gator season opener is scheduled for August 30th against Idaho, 7 p.m. at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium.

Vanderbilt was the final school to attend SEC Football Media Days on Monday with its new coach Derek Mason.   On Tuesday, South Carolina, Mississippi State, Texas A&M and Tennessee will be at the podium.

To listen to audio from the story, click below:

Slive on restructuring the NCAA

Slive on the vision of the SEC

Malzahn’s goal for his team this year is to be more balanced

Muschamp on how to deal with being on the hot seat

Driskel on the new offense

Fowler on Muschamp being a defensive minded coach


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More Open UF Football Practices, HR Derby, MLB All Star Game In Sports Update

By on July 15th, 2014

You’ll get a chance to see more Gator football practices, Major League Baseball has a repeat winner in the Home Run Derby, the All Star Game plays tonight and more in our Tuesday Sports Update…

** The University Athletic Association announced that eight practices will be open to the public and to the media this summer.   Mark your calendars for August 7, 8, 9, 11, 12, 13 and 14 at the Dizney Lacrosse Stadium and the August 16th practice in The Swamp.  First practice is August 4.

** SEC Football Media Days continues today in Birmingham, Alabama.   Florida, Vanderbilt and Auburn were up first yesterday and four more teams and their representatives take the podium today.

** Baseball’s Home Run Derby has a repeat winner in Oakland’s Yoenis Cespedes as he blows up Cincinnati’s Todd Frazier in the final round to win the event.

** Baseball’s All-Star Game is tonight at Target Field in Minneapolis.   Felix Hernandez starts for the American League on the mound while Adam Wainwright gets the call for the National League.

** Former Gators Chandler Parsons and Bradley Beal are part of the Team USA basketball roster being coached again by Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski.   The roster could be pared down before the team begins its play.

** The Orlando Magic have been busy, officially signing free agent veterans Ben Gordon and Channing Frye and then trading with the Chicago Bulls to acquire forward Anthony Randolph and two draft picks for the rights to Milovan Rakovic.


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SEC Football Media Days, MLB Reaches All Star Break, NBA News, World Cup In Sports Update

By on July 14th, 2014

SEC Football Media Days starts today, big league baseball reaches the All-Star break and some NBA news in our Monday Sports Update…

** The annual SEC Football Media Days begins today in Birmingham, Alabama and runs through Thursday.   Gator football coach Will Muschamp and three players will speak today along with Auburn coach Gus Malzahn and his players as well as SEC Commissioner Mike Slive.

** Major League Baseball has reached the All-Star break.   Atlanta and Washington are tied atop the NL East while Milwaukee and the LA Dodgers both have one game leads in their respective divisions.  Baltimore, Detroit and Oakland lead their respective American League divisions.

** The Home Run Derby takes place tonight at the All-Star Game sight in Minneapolis; you can hear it live on ESPN 850 WRUF starting at 8pm.

** The World Cup is history.   Germany gets an extra time goal to defeat Argentina 1-0 in the final.

** In NBA news, former Gator Chandler Parsons will now be a member of the Dallas Mavericks after the offer sheet he signed with the team was not matched by his former team, the Houston Rockets.

** The Rockets also trade guard Jeremy Lin to the LA Lakers for the rights to center Sergei Lishchuk; the Lakers also get 2015 first and second round draft picks.

** In NASCAR, Brad Keselowski wins the NASCAR race in New Hampshire on Sunday, beating out Kyle Busch and Kyle Larson.   It was his third win of the year.

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LeBron James To Return To Cleveland

By on July 11th, 2014

After seemingly endless days of speculation, discussion and talk, LeBron James has finally decided where he will next play basketball in the NBA.

In a letter published on SI.Com today, the free agent says he is returning “home” to play basketball for the Cleveland Cavaliers, the team he began his pro career with out of high school.

With that decision made, several other players could now sign free agent deals.  Former Miami Heat teammate Chris Bosh may now leave the Heat to sign a lucrative free agent deal with the Houston Rockets.   That deal could also impact whether free agent and former Gator Chandler Parsons has an offer sheet matched by the Rockets after he signed an offer sheet with Dallas.

And the future of the Miami Heat franchise now certainly becomes more clouded with the James announcement.   Team president Pat Riley will now have to restructure a team without James and try to keep it competitive.

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World Cup, Baseball, SEC Football In Sports Update

By on July 11th, 2014

The World Cup finishes up, Major League Baseball goes to its All-Star break and SEC football isn’t too far away in our Friday Sports Update…

** The World Cup ends this weekend with the third place game on Saturday and the final between Germany and Argentina on Sunday.   ESPN 850 has live coverage of both matches at 3:30pm on Saturday and at 2:30 pm on Sunday.

** Major League Baseball has its final weekend of action before the All-Star Game in Minnesota.   Atlanta will play the Chicago Cubs while the Miami Marlins face the New York Mets and the Tampa Bay Rays tangle with Toronto.

** Fan voting places Chicago White Sox pitcher Chris Sale and Chicago Cubs infielder Anthony Rizzo on the All-Star teams in their respective leagues.

** The New York Yankees got bad news on ace starting pitcher Masahiro Tanaka; he is out at least six weeks with an elbow injury.   He is 12-4 on the season but has not pitched well in his last four outings.

** Former Gator pitcher Nick Maronde has been designated for assignment by the Los Angeles Angels.

** NBA free agent signings can now be formally announced but no word yet on LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony and Chris Bosh as to where they will end up as free agents.


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