Former OSU linebacker Darron Lee returns an interception for a touchdown during a game against Northern Illinois on Sept. 19. Credit: Samantha Hollingshead | Photo EditorFormer Ohio State linebacker Darron Lee was selected by the Jets with the No. 20 pick in the first round of the 2016 NFL draft. Lee becomes the fifth Buckeye taken in the first round of this year’s draft. NFL.com’s draft analyst Mike Mayock ranked Lee as the fourth-best linebacker prospect.The local product of New Albany, Ohio, quickly became a dominant force for Urban Meyer’s “Silver Bullets.” Lee came into OSU as an athletic high school quarterback and safety recruit who was 6-foot-2 but hardly weighed 200 pounds. After sitting out his freshman season with a medical redshirt, Lee gained close to 30 pounds and started at outside linebacker in 2014.With his bigger frame to go along with his incredible athleticism and lightning-quick speed, Buckeye fans saw Lee transform into a Big Ten linebacker poised for the spotlight.In his first game with the Buckeyes, down 7-6 in the 2014 opener against Navy, Lee charged through the line to scoop up a fumble forced by defensive lineman Joey Bosa and took it the distance to give OSU a lead it would never relinquish.The 6-foot-2, 232-pound linebacker totaled 81 tackles his redshirt freshman season, including 16.5 tackles for loss and seven and a half sacks. Lee was named an Associated Press Freshman All-American and defensive MVP in OSU’s Sugar Bowl victory over Alabama after he had three tackles for loss and two sacks.In his redshirt sophomore campaign, Lee’s numbers went down slightly, but he still ended up with 66 tackles, 11 of which were for a loss, and four and a half sacks. His performance was enough for the AP to award the linebacker second-team All-American honors. Lee started 28 games for the Buckeyes in two seasons.Lee ran the fastest time of all linebacker prospects at the NFL combine in February (4.47), and finished as a top performer in the vertical jump at 35.5 feet.The Jets are scheduled to open up the 2016 regular season against the Cincinnati Bengals on Sep. 11 at 1 p.m.
OSU junior forward Jae’Sean Tate (1) shoots the ball during the Buckeyes’ 72-67 win over Providence on Nov. 17. Credit: Ashley Nelson | Sports DirectorWith its second-straight home game, the Ohio State men’s basketball team took advantage of the comforts of home with a 72-67 win. It took nearly two and a half minutes before the first shot fell for either team, but OSU eventually got going with the hot hand of sophomore guard JaQuan Lyle. The Buckeyes took a shot, however, when junior forward Keita Bates-Diop went down with a right knee injury.Lyle finished the game with 21 points, eight rebounds and seven assists. With 15 first-half points on 6-for-8 shooting, the questions about the ability on the offensive side of the ball for the 6-foot-5 guard after two disappointing games quickly faded with a stellar performance. “This week in practice, all of my teammates and coaches helped me get my confidence up,” Lyle said. “They were teaching me to never be satisfied and just keep working.”Bates-Diop was knocked to the court in the second half while trying to set a screen, and awkwardly bent his right knee on the way down. The injury appeared to be gruesome, and he was helped to the sideline. There was a noticeable limp, but he made his way back to the locker room under his own power after sitting on the bench for a brief period. “Believe it or not it’s his ankle,” OSU coach Thad Matta said. “Just an ankle sprain. Kinda puffed up or whatever, but day-to-day so we’ll need him back. That’s for sure.”OSU made its last three shots to round out the first half, giving the Buckeyes a 10-point lead going into the locker room. Senior forward Marc Loving failed to get in the scoring column in the first 20 minutes of play, but was a key rebounder on the defensive end, pulling down seven boards. Even with a few early mistakes in transition and on defense, the Buckeyes played with a flow and a hustle that was not seen last game against North Carolina Central. Crashing the hoop, OSU led the Friars in rebounds, 43-33.In the second half, Lyle picked up where he left off with a tough, contested layup. Although the Buckeyes had the leading scorer, Providence quickly went on a 7-0 run to reel OSU back in. A quick timeout by Matta slowed the Friars’ attack, but the Buckeyes had to fight hard to keep the lead.Redshirt junior center Trevor Thompson played 20 minutes Thursday night in replacement of freshman Micah Potter, who had foul trouble early in the contest. In a true-center type of performance, Thompson finished the night with 12 points, nine rebounds and three blocks.Always the competitor, the 7-foot tall center said OSU is still going to be pushing hard next week to strengthen its play on both ends of the court.“We’re hungry, and we’re not satisfied with 3-0,” Thompson said.Redshirt sophomore center David Bell also came off the bench for OSU and played an important role for the Buckeyes. In one of the highlights of the night, Bell drove the lane to the left of Lyle, who lobbed a pass to the cutting center. Bell slammed it through the hoop for a highlight-reel dunk.“I thought Jae’Sean (Tate), Trevor, those guys … Dave Bell did a heck of a job in the paint there,” Matta said. “Those are the baskets we were hoping we could get.”Turnovers remain to be a problem for the Buckeyes, as Providence picked up 11 takeaways. Last week against Navy, OSU had 17 turnovers. Providence was led by junior forward Rodney Bullock, who poured in 27 points, while going 5-for-9 from 3-point land. Bullock created mismatches throughout the evening, and even pulled down eight rebounds. Junior forward Emmitt Holt, Providence’s leading scorer coming into the game, went just 3-for-11 from the field with 11 points. The Friars are now 1-1 on the season, while the Buckeyes keep their perfect record through three games. OSU faces Western Carolina at home Monday, with tipoff scheduled for 7 p.m.
LOS ANGELES – For at least the first 20 minutes of play, the defects that often doomed Ohio State during a rocky midseason stretch in February seemed to show in glimpses Thursday night at the Staples Center. In their Sweet 16 bout against Arizona, the Buckeyes veered away from the type of play that had gotten them to Los Angeles and leaned on the skill of junior forward Deshaun Thomas, the team’s and Big Ten’s leading scorer. Enter LaQuinton Ross, whose swift flick of the wrist likely made him the most-talked about person in Columbus. Thanks to the sophomore forward’s 3-pointer with 2.1 seconds to play, OSU won the game, 73-70, and will play in the Elite 8 for the second consecutive year. “This is what every player grows up looking at on TV and wants to hit that big shot, wants to win the game and hit the big shot in the NCAA Tournament or the NBA,” Ross said. “It just feels great to be here right now.” It was the second game in a row a late 3-pointer has lifted the Buckeyes. Just last week, junior guard Aaron Craft, OSU’s defensive heart and soul (and a 30 percent 3-point shooter) buried a game-winning shot en route to 18 points, vaulting the Buckeyes past Iowa State in Dayton Sunday. In some ways, Thursday felt like deja vu. But for parts of the first half, even being in the position to win seemed unlikely. While OSU opened the game’s scoring with a basket from Thomas, they seemed anxious and disorganized on both ends of the court. “We started off slow. Guys were being selfish, guys were hugged up on their man, not helping each other out, getting into gaps and tagging,” said Thomas, who finished the night with a game-high 20 points. “I don’t know what it was. It was probably just the heat of the moment. Everybody was just too excited.” Quickly, Arizona coach Sean Miller and the Wildcats took advantage. After falling the victim to an early, furious 10-2 run, the Buckeyes fell behind, 10-4, with 15:46 to play in the period. Behind Arizona senior guard Mark Lyons and his 10 first-half points, the Wildcats shot 50 percent from the field and, in particular, used a lethal 3-point assault to stave off a Buckeye squad that struggled to find momentum. Thomas, the Big Ten’s leading scorer, became a lone pillar for stability as his teammates’ jump shots clanked off the iron and their layups clunked off the backboard. But despite Arizona sinking 63 percent of shots from behind the arc, OSU coach Thad Matta and his crew trotted into halftime down just 38-34, thanks to Thomas and his 16-point outburst in the first period. Having been outscored, outshot and perhaps generally outplayed in the first half against the Wildcats, Thomas said Matta had a singular and simple message. “Coach said do what we do at halftime,” he said, “and that’s what we did.” Craft relayed a similar message. “Our biggest focus was we needed to play better defense,” Craft said. “We gave up 38 points in a half and we haven’t done that too often this year. We got stops and we got easy buckets in transition and that’s where we’re at our best. It really kind of fuels our offense. Layups, dunks, mismatches, scramble situations.” It didn’t take long for OSU to pick up its level of play. The Buckeyes roared out of the gates on a 10-0 run thanks to sophomore forward Sam Thompson, junior guards Lenzelle Smith Jr. and Craft and even sophomore center Amir Williams – who swatted away a shot on one end of the floor before snatching a rebound over two defenders and going up for the jam on the other. Conversely, in that span, Arizona found scoring to be a more troubling endeavor than it was in the first half. In fact, the Wildcats wouldn’t make a basket until freshman forward Brandon Ashley connected on a short jumper a the 14:40 mark of the second. The struggles didn’t end there, either, as Arizona could only muster five points the first nine minutes of the second period and trailed the Buckeyes by as many as 10 after leading all but 33 seconds in the first half. The Wildcats responded, cutting the OSU lead to 60-57 after Lyons buried a trey with 6:33 to play. With 21.8 seconds to play, Lyons tied the game at 70 after making a driving layup despite being fouled, then making the ensuing free throw. It was not enough to overcome Ross – the Buckeyes’ hero – who surged late to score 14 of his 17 total points in the game’s final eight minutes. The Buckeyes have had a revolving door of second scoring options that have played sidekicks to Thomas’ usually steady production. And while his aid came late, Smith said the flavor-of-the-day approach to who will compliment Thomas is a blessing rather than a curse. “That’s such a good thing about this team, you never know who’s gonna step up and be that guy in next game,” he said. “It’s been a knock on us all year. We don’t have offense, you know, we don’t have that second scorer. Well, I mean, I can’t tell at this point, we’re finding guys to make shots.” The Buckeyes (29-7) are set to play No. 9 seed Wichita State Saturday in the Elite 8 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles at 7:05 p.m.
Freshman defensive lineman Joey Bosa (97) is looked at by the OSU training staff and coach Urban Meyer during a game against Illinois Nov. 16 at Memorial Stadium. OSU won, 60-35.Credit: Shelby Lum / Photo editorIn football, much like any other sport, injuries are part of the game.For the No. 3 Ohio State Buckeyes (10-0, 8-0), Saturday was no exception, as at times had to play without their star quarterback and a stalwart offensive lineman during their 60-35 victory against Illinois (3-7, 0-6).OSU redshirt-senior offensive lineman Jack Mewhort made his 35th consecutive start in the win, but was taken out after senior wide receiver Corey “Philly” Brown hauled in an 11-yard touchdown pass from junior quarterback Braxton Miller, which gave the Buckeyes a 28-0 lead early in the second quarter.Coach Urban Meyer said after after the game that the plan was to get Mewhort out of the game if OSU “could get up on (Illinois)” early to rest his right knee, which he hurt in practice earlier in the week.“It’s devastating,” Meyer said, referring to when Mewhort, who he called OSU’s “best offensive player,” is not in the game. “It’s not that he’s a very good player, he’s the man. He’s the rally point, he’s the leader.”The OSU coach compared playing without Mewhort to losing senior safety Christian Bryant, who broke his ankle late in OSU’s 31-24 win against Wisconsin Sept. 28.“Not having him, it’s a little bit like C.B.,” Meyer said. “We’re still feeling the effects of having Christian Bryant out.”OSU beat the Illini without two other starters in sophomore linebacker Joshua Perry and junior linebacker Curtis Grant. Grant is recovering from an ankle injury sustained in the Buckeyes’ 56-0 win over Purdue Nov. 2 and Perry slipped on ice in the middle of last week and hit his head. The Buckeyes also lost starting freshman defensive lineman Joey Bosa to a sprained neck in the third quarter Saturday and had to turn to backup redshirt-senior quarterback Kenny Guiton at one point when Miller came out following a hard hit.“You’re playing with your third string middle linebacker … Your starting defensive end gets knocked out,” Meyer said. “We’re down 11 players for the year.”The lone usual starter at linebacker, junior Ryan Shazier, said playing without Grant and Perry changed the game a little bit.“It’s a little different because you’re so used to looking and just seeing one guy on the side of you or looking down and seeing that one guy there,” Shazier said. “But we practice with each other, we rotate all the time, so with those guys in I feel confident.”The players Shazier was referring to were sophomores Camren Williams and Joe Burger, who filled in for Perry and Grant.“We trust in Cam and Joe Burger just like Curtis and Josh,” Shazier said. “They just don’t have as much experience.”The 35 points the Buckeyes gave up were the most so far in 2013, and although one touchdown was scored on a punt return in the second quarter, Shazier said that does not matter.“I am not satisfied because I don’t want anybody to score any points on you, but 35 is way too much,” Shazier said. “Because if our offense wasn’t the offense that we are right now, this could have been a different situation, so we gave up too many points today.”Mewhort re-entered the lineup in the third quarter, and on a day where high winds wreaked havoc on the passing game, helped pave the way for both senior running back Carlos Hyde and Miller on the ground. OSU finished with 441 yards rushing on the day, compared to 132 for the Fighting Illini.“We went back to basics a little bit because the passing game wasn’t working as we thought,” Miller said. “We kind of get the ball out to Carlos or me, (and) we’ve got the best O-line in the Big Ten or country. Why not?”Miller only managed to complete 13 of his 29 pass attempts for 150 yards and two touchdowns against Illinois. His 44.8 completion percentage was his lowest of the season.The Buckeyes are scheduled to take on Indiana next Saturday in what will be their final home game of the season. Kickoff is set for 3:30 p.m. at Ohio Stadium.
Ohio State redshirt sophomore running back Mike Weber (left) speaks with running backs coach Tony Alford (right) prior to the Buckeyes’ season-opening 49-21 win over Indiana on Aug. 31 in Bloomington, Indiana. Credit: Colin Hass-Hill | Sports EditorOhio State will have both its top two running backs, freshman J.K. Dobbins and redshirt sophomore Mike Weber, for its Week Two matchup against Oklahoma Saturday evening. Coach Urban Meyer said Weber is healthy and will suit up and play against the Sooners.“Mike had a good practice today, and he went full speed today,” Meyer said.Weber, last year’s starter, missed the Buckeyes’ season-opening 49-21 victory against Indiana due to a hamstring injury. Meyer said he has not determined how he will rotate the backfield duo.Dobbins started in his debut against Indiana, rushing for 29 times for 182 yards. He was the sixth true freshman to ever start for Ohio State and rushed for more attempts and yards than Weber had in any game last year.In 2016, Weber gained 1,119 rushing yards on 182 attempts, scoring nine touchdowns. He added 23 catches for 91 yards.
The former France international footballer and current Belgium assistant is rumored to be taking the helm of the Ligue 1 clubFrench Ligue 1 club Monaco sacked coach Leonardo Jardim on Thursday after a very bad 2018-2019 season start.And former France international footballer and current Belgium national team assistant Thierry Henry is rumored to have been offered the vacant job.And for Chelsea’s superstar Eden Hazard, he would do great in the team.Real Madrid suffer a Luka Modric injury blow Andrew Smyth – September 12, 2019 Real Madrid have announced that Luka Modric has suffered an adductor injury, which could rule him out of some key fixtures.“He was a fantastic player,” Hazard said at a press conference as quoted by Goal.“As a manager, he doesn’t have a lot of experience, but he will learn. If he leaves the Belgium team we will be sad, but I think for him maybe it’s a good time to go.”“He wants to be a manager, so he will be a top manager, for sure,” he added.
Borussia Dortmund skipper Marco Reus is wary of the challenge that will be Atletico Madrid, he knows they won’t have many chances to score.Champions League Wednesday will be the day with the most interesting matches, one of those will be Borussia Dortmund vs Atletico Madrid and Marco Reus spoke about the upcoming match against the Colchoneros.Signal Iduna Park will open its doors for what can arguably be described as one of the most interesting matches, one of two that will be played in the next couple of weeks and will bring us top quality football from both sides.👍 @woodyinho completely on track https://t.co/Svu9LklqQY pic.twitter.com/t3aOOOoF3P— Borussia Dortmund (@BVB) September 29, 2017“The most important thing here is to remain patient, Atletico is a very good defensive squad because they don’t give you any space to maneuver,” said Reus via Diario AS.“We are not going to have many opportunities to score goals and we must get the best out of them. We’ve had many great chances to score in the last few matches. Atletico’s defense is very strong and we must be patient.”It’s not the biggest moment for us in the Champions League because we also had a very special game against Monaco. Atletico have already proved their worth on the international stage and that is very good for them.”“They have great players but we will play at home and it will be a special match, but getting the three points would be very motivating because we could take the group’s top spot.”“We must watch more videos of Atletico Madrid, we have to watch them playing counter-attack. We will get more into the details within the next hours.”Merson believes Arsenal should sign Sancho Manuel R. Medina – September 14, 2019 Borussia Dortmund winger Jadon Sancho might be the perfect player to play for the Gunners, according to former England international Paul Merson.🛫🇩🇪 Germany, here we go! 🔜 ⚽⭐What a game awaits!💪💪💪#AúpaAtleti #UCL #BVBAtleti pic.twitter.com/1JBMtSt4mK— Atlético de Madrid (@atletienglish) October 23, 2018Finally, Marco Reus spoke about the way he communicates with Paco Alcacer: “My Spanish is not very good, his German isn’t good either but he knows what he has to do as a striker.”“It has been important for him to know the team’s most repeated practices. You can tell that he studies when we play matches, he hasn’t had a single adaptation problem.”Paco Alcácer has scored with every single shot on target he has had in the Bundesliga:⚽️⚽️⚽️⚽️⚽️⚽️⚽️The Midas Touch. pic.twitter.com/wtkUWJrigG— Squawka Football (@Squawka) October 20, 2018
Former Chairman of the Football Writers’ Association Steve Bates says the success that Manchester City have enjoyed in recent years will be ‘tarnished’ if they were found to have broken Financial Fair Play rules.German newspaper Der Spiegel broke the news and reported that Manchester City have circumvented Financial Fair Play rules, and the Premier League responded and promised to act if they receive substantial evidence.Manchester City, however, denied the allegations and pushed back saying it was “organized and clear” attempt to damage their reputation.“Pep Guardiola came out in the week and said whatever financial accusations being made shouldn’t detract from what was being achieved on the pitch, but I believe the two are intrinsically linked,” Bates told Sky Sports.Premier League Betting: Match-day 5 Stuart Heath – September 14, 2019 Going into the Premier League’s match-day five with a gap already beginning to form at the top of the league. We will take a…“If FFP had been rigidly applied, and City had flouted the rules with creative accounting, would they have been in a position to spend the kind of money that they have? I’m not totally sure they would have done.“The problem is that UEFA have been weak. They’ve put FFP in place to protect a ‘cartel’ at the top of European football, who didn’t want to see new money coming into the game, but the whole concept is now seen as a bit of a sham.“I’ve not heard UEFA make any statements or comments this week. They don’t want the big clubs like Manchester City and PSG filing lawsuits against them.“It’s a shame that it’s come to that as City’s achievements will be slightly tarnished by this. It’s inevitable, but whether football fans really care that much, I’m not so sure.”
Chelsea midfielder Cesc Fabregas is set to leave Chelsea in the January transfer window after falling out of favour with new manager Maurizio Sarri.The Spanish midfielder has started just one of the West London club’s 19 Premier League matches to date this campaign, appearing as a substitute just four times, according to Football EspanaFabregas has been linked with a number of European clubs including Milan, Valencia and Atletico Madrid, but the report gives no indication of his next destination.Sacchi explains Sarri, Conte, and Ancelotti Manuel R. Medina – September 14, 2019 Arrigo Sacchi talked about how Sarri has a tougher time at Juventus than Conte at Inter; while Ancelotti’s “blood is boiling” at Napoli.Arrigo Sacchi…Fabregas moved to Stamford Bridge in the summer of 2014 from Barcelona and was key to the Chelsea squad that won the Premier league in the 2015/2016 season.He is due to celebrate his 32nd birthday in May and will be looking forward to join a club before then.Sarri, since his arrival has made his intention not to use some players known to the public.
Kalidou Koulibaly’s two-match ban could not be rescinded despite Napoli’s effort in the court of appeal.The Napoli defender was sent off during the loss to Inter for sarcastically applauding the referee after a yellow card amid racist taunts from the stands throughout the match.Today the Senegalese defender testified in front of the appeal court and confessed he was “ashamed” to tell his mother what had happened.However, the appeal was turned down, meaning he will miss two games starting with Sunday’s showdown against Lazio.Top 5 Serie A players to watch for next weekend’s activity Tomás Pavel Ibarra Meda – September 11, 2019 With the international activity cooling down for the next month, we go back to the Top 5 players to watch in Serie A next…Napoli lawyer Mattia Grassani told Football Italia via Sky the verdict left Koulibaly and the club with “a profound sense of injustice.”A statement released by the appeals court explains the “unacceptable atmosphere that was created inside the stadium during the match has no relevance and cannot be considered justification for an athlete to mock the referee.“If that were the case, the presence of racist behaviour in the stands could be used to justify and not sanction any act (even violence) by a player. Obviously, that cannot be allowed to stand as precedent.”