Colorado coach Deion Sanders is well known for being one of the most media-friendly athletes of all time. From his do-it-all Florida State days to life in the NFL and MLB to his second act on television, “Prime Time” and the camera have had a symbiotic relationship spanning decades, cities, sports and media.
When Sanders took over the Buffaloes this season, the spotlight shone on the Hall of Fame defensive back like never before. What did he think of this phenomenon? The answer, to deploy an old blogging cliché, may surprise you.
At this point in the Shohei Ohtani Free Agency Sweepstakes™, the baseball world has little substantive left to say about which team is the likeliest winner and which team would benefit the most and which team has potentially hurt its chances by daring to mention contact with the player.
It’s time for a new list: Which team would be the funniest landing spot for Ohtani? Not the best or most reasonable. The funniest.
For the purposes of this ranking, we care not about logic or finances or practicality. This is not about who will sign Ohtani.
Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence addressed a viral moment that was a heavy topic of debate from Jacksonville’s 34-31 overtime loss to the Bengals on Monday at TIAA Bank Field.
Shortly after sustaining an ankle sprain, cameras captured Lawrence slowly limping to the locker room with help from two team employees. Fans on social media curiously wondered why Lawrence didn’t take a cart to transport back to the locker room.
The quarterback answered Wednesday that, yes, the Jaguars did have a cart available.
NBA commissioner Adam Silver is no stranger to the ongoing feud between NBA veteran official Scott Foster and Warriors guard Chris Paul.
In November, Foster ejected Paul in the second quarter of the Warriors’ 123-115 loss to the Suns after Phoenix’s telecast appeared to show the veteran guard calling the official a “b—-.” After the Nov. 22 loss, Paul told reporters that his beef with Foster was “personal” involving a situation about his son and had a meeting with the official, Doc Rivers and Bob Delaney about the issue.
Eagles wideout AJ Brown had a few words of warning for the Cowboys ahead of Week 14’s Sunday night showdown between the NFC East heavyweights.
Brown ripped off 142 yards in last week’s 42—19 loss to San Francisco, but he and the rest of the Eagles will be looking to bounce back and regain some confidence in a prime-time matchup against the Cowboys.
When asked whether Philly addressed its perceived lack of energy in the 49ers game, Brown said with a smirk, “I’m going to keep what we say in the locker room, but you gonna see. You gonna see.
Few bogeymen in sports have been as omnipresent throughout history as the opaque, hazily defined “New York media.”
The spotlight of the Big Apple’s press has played a supporting role in many of the cities’ most cherished athletes’ careers: Babe Ruth, Joe Namath, Tom Seaver, and Derek Jeter, to name a few. The flip side of this equation is that struggles in New York resonate much more across the country than elsewhere.
Hence the saga of Jets quarterback Zach Wilson, who, three years ago, enjoyed all the status at BYU an eighth-place finish in Heisman voting affords.
Based on numerous reports coming from the winter meetings, it seems like the long-rumored Juan Soto trade is about to happen.
For weeks, speculation has grown that the New York Yankees would be the strongest suitor for Soto, though discussions had seemed to stall just last week.
READ: JUAN SOTO-TO-YANKEES TALKS REPORTEDLY ON PAUSE WITH MLB WINTER MEETINGS IN NASHVILLE ON DECK
But late Tuesday night, talks intensified, with the deal reportedly nearing completion on Wednesday afternoon.
Mike Greenberg is DONE with his ESPN Get Up producers asking … perfectly fair questions about turnover machine Josh Allen.
His show, his rules!
For those who missed it — and that’s fine if you did because who watches ESPN when college football season is over? — Greeny lost his mind on this morning’s Get Up when the panel was asked how many turnovers Josh Allen would have Sunday against Kansas City.
It’s a pretty fair question, if we’re being honest. Allen has a billion turnovers since entering the league in 2018 (it’s actually 96!) and has been on quite a roll this year.
Magic forward Moritz Wagner went viral Wednesday for sharing a hilarious encounter with superstar Kevin Durant.
On the Pardon My Take podcast, Wagner told a story from his rookie season with the Lakers when he suited up against Durant and the Warriors.
Wagner, who came off the Lakers bench and played just 11 minutes in that game, was fouled by Durant on a three-point attempt. Before he knew it, he was talking trash to a 13-time NBA All-Star.
“I didn’t even realize it was him,” Wagner said. “I turned around and was like, ‘Yeah, you can’t guard me.
You wanna know how awful it is being a Florida Gators fan right now? Billy Napier, who just finished his second season, not only spent the first week of December recruiting because there’s no bowl game to prepare for, but he got ruthlessly trolled by a 15-year-old along the way.
Now, I’ll hand it to Napier — he took it in stride. I respect him for that. But this may be the most depressing/funniest thing I’ve ever witnessed as a Gators fan:
The Lakers eliminated the Suns from the in-season tournament Tuesday, and in doing so recorded their third straight win against Phoenix this year. While all the games have been close in the fourth quarter, a common concern has emerged for the Suns across all three games, particularly in crunch time. And that concern conveniently has a name: LeBron James.
I know, you’re not here for the breaking news that James is good at basketball and a problem for opponents.
The sideline dust-up between San Francisco 49ers linebacker Dre Greenlaw and the Philadelphia Eagles chief security officer ‘Big Dom’ DiSandro has predictably been blown out of proportion. Days later it’s still a topic of conversation with Philadelphia center Jason Kelce and head coach Nick Sirianni going to bat for the staffer.
The moment occurred during the fourth quarter of the 49ers’ dominant victory when Greenlaw tackled Philadelphia wide receiver DeVonta Smith after the whistle near the Eagles sideline. A flag was thrown for a late hit, but things didn’t stop there.
Photo by Ben Jared/PGA TOUR via Getty Images
The USGA and the R&A announced their timelines for the new golf ball rollback, and it caused quite a commotion on social media from fans.
The golf rollback era is here.
Well, not yet, technically, but the United States Golf Association (USGA) and the R&A—golf’s governing bodies—announced a timeline for rolling back the golf ball on Wednesday.
Once the news broke, golf fans let those emotions run wild on social media as they got the word ‘rollback’ to trend.
Wyoming football coach Craig Bohl will retire after 10 seasons with the Cowboys, the program announced on Wednesday.
Bohl will coach his final game when Wyoming (8–4) takes on Toledo (11–2) in the 2023 Barstool Sports Arizona Bowl on Dec. 30. He ends his coaching career after registering the longest head-coaching tenure in school history.
During his tenure, the 65-year-old led the Cowboys to six winning seasons in the Mountain West Conference and three bowl victories in six appearances.
Toronto Maple Leafs star Auston Matthews revealed in a recent interview that he would be open to taking on some acting gigs in the future.
That’s interesting because no one has acting range like hockey players: their acting chops run the gamut from good to not bad to as wooden as an old-school Koho twig.
Matthews has appeared in numerous commercials over the years, including a recent one with guy who almost bought the Ottawa Senators, Ryan Reynolds.
This led to the question of whether or not Matthews would like to get more acting work.
“Yeah, I mean, I wouldn’t be opposed to it at all.
Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images
It has been anything but dull this F1 offseason
The 2023 Formula 1 season is barely in the books, but the news will not stop.
On Tuesday, the sport’s governing body released a statement indicating that a compliance investigation was underway into Mercedes Team Principal Toto Wolff, and allegations that the boss was being given confidential information from someone within Formula One Management (FOM).
Tuesday night’s game between the Blackhawks and Predators was a good one. Nick Foligno had two goals for Chicago and the score was 3–3 at the end of regulation before Nashville won in a shootout for its eighth victory in its last 10 games.
But the most amazing highlight wasn’t a nice goal, a slick pass or a big hit. It was the puck going out of play.
Joc Pederson is not one of the biggest free agents on the market, but the veteran outfielder has been a consistent producer since his career began with the Dodgers.
While fans aren’t clamoring to see who signs him, Pederson did cause some chaos on Wednesday with a cryptic Instagram post hinting at a possible destination.
Pederson posted a photo on Instagram of him with the Phillie Phanatic before a game at Citizens Bank Park. The caption for the photo was “It’s always sunny in Philadelphia,” sparking speculation that he might be signing with the Phillies.
The Vikings are sticking with quarterback Josh Dobbs as the starter for Sunday’s game against the Raiders, coach Kevin O’Connell announced Wednesday.
Minnesota was evaluating a potential change under center going into the bye week, but after discussing internally, Dobbs will remain the starter for now.
It’s likely that Minnesota wanted time to evaluate Dobbs under center with All-Pro wide receiver Justin Jefferson returning to the lineup, providing the quarterback with an elite weapon on the outside.
With everything but Army-Navy and bowl games in the books, it’s time to put out the 2023 Sports Illustrated All-American selections. As usual, there were more deserving candidates than available positions on our first and second teams. But these were the 54 who had the best seasons in our estimation. Congratulations to all!
Quarterback: Jayden Daniels, LSU
Running back: Ollie Gordon II, Oklahoma State; Cody Schrader, Missouri
Wide receiver: Marvin Harrison Jr.
It’s been a chaotic week for Jets fans, to say the least.
In the latest update on New York’s dizzying quarterback carousel, coach Robert Saleh announced that Zach Wilson will take over as the starting quarterback for Week 14’s game against the Texans on Sunday.
During his press conference on Wednesday, Saleh said Wilson is “fired up” to be back in the starting lineup despite NFL insider Dianna Russini’s recent report that the former No. 2 pick was “reluctant” to resume starting duties.
The Celtics star only has one problem with the NBA in-season tournament.
The NBA in-season tournament is one of the wildest new additions to the pro sports landscape in the United States, and it’s been amazing. Having a contest within the season has broken up the action in fascinating ways, contributed to better team chemistry, and really makes the game feel different at a time a lot of fans are checked out.
Celtics star Jayson Tatum joined Andrew Iguodala and Evan Turner on The Point Forward Podcast to discuss his feelings on the in-season tournament, good and bad.
Although disappointed in the allegations of domestic violence made against Von Miller, Bills general manager Brandon Beane stressed Wednesday that he wants the legal process to play out and not rush to making any judgments.
Good variety of questions in this week’s mailbag. Let’s jump into those …
From Tom Marshall (@aredzonauk): Could Matt LaFleur have a shot at coach of the year?
Tom, maybe I’m the wrong person to ask—I thought LaFleur deserved consideration in 2021, too, simply for his ability to manage the Aaron Rodgers situation. If it weren’t for his people skills, and how he bridged the sizable gap between the front office and Rodgers, I believe that things would’ve devolved quickly between the quarterback and team.
Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy has been diagnosed with acute appendicitis and is scheduled to have surgery Wednesday afternoon, the team announced. McCarthy was experiencing abdominal pain earlier in the day that warranted further evaluation.
He is expected to be released from the hospital Wednesday and is anticipated to return before Week 14’s Sunday night game against the Eagles. Dallas’s coordinators will run practice until McCarthy returns.
The sequel is never quite as good as the original, and Marshall found that out the hard way this year.
In 2022, the Thundering Herd went 9–4 in coach Charles Huff’s first season. They also beat Notre Dame, won a bowl game and spent parts of the season within shouting distance of the AP Top 25.
In 2023, Marshall slumped to 6–6 and will back into a Frisco Bowl matchup against UTSA, the loser of six of its last eight games.
On Wednesday, the ennui of Huff’s sophomore slump was ratcheted up by one of the bluntest quotes of the 2023 season.
Adrian Meronk speaks to the media ahead of the 2023 ISPS HANDA Australian Open. | Photo by Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images
Adrian Meronk’s name arose to the surface of numerous LIV Golf rumors, but the Polish star put those canards to bed.
Adrian Meronk had a career season in 2023.
He recorded three wins, qualified for all four major championships for the first time, and earned his PGA Tour card by finishing fourth in the DP World Tour’s Race to Dubai standings. The top 10 players in those rankings—not otherwise exempt—earned playing rights on the PGA Tour for the 2024 season.
There was no shortage of controversy late in the NBA in-season tournament matchup between the Suns and Lakers. With a trip to Las Vegas and a spot in the semifinals on the line, both teams played playoff-caliber basketball on both ends.
But with under 20 seconds remaining, things got off the rails, and Phoenix guard Devin Booker posted the best photo of the bunch thus far to ignite the team’s fan base even more.
After Booker scored to cut the Lakers’ lead to one, Austin Reaves hit a clutch three-pointer with 15.1 seconds remaining to make it a 105-101 game.
Florida State wide receiver Johnny Wilson is expected to enter the 2024 NFL draft, according to ESPN’s Pete Thamel.
Wilson, who came to FSU in 2022 after two seasons at Arizona State, quickly became one of quarterback Jordan Travis’s favorite targets. This season, Wilson finished second on the team in receptions (41), yards (617) and touchdowns (2) behind wide receiver Keon Coleman.
In the ’22 campaign, Wilson caught 43 passes for 897 yards and five touchdowns. Thamel reported that Wilson will participate in the Senior Bowl.
The USGA and R&A, two of golf’s governing bodies, officially announced on Wednesday that a game-wide golf ball rollback is coming. Starting in 2028, golf balls used by players on the PGA Tour will travel a shorter distance while the same golf balls will be implemented and enforced at the amateur level in 2030.
With these newly nerfed golf balls, long hitters who have ball speeds of 183 mph or higher will lose 13 to 15 yards with their driver.
Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports
Ranking college football’s best transfer portal QBs for the 2024 season
On Dec. 4, the transfer portal opened and the college football world saw a slew of talented players enter the portal in hopes of finding new life somewhere else. With the success of the big portal transfers (three of the four Heisman candidates, all QBs, transferred to their current school), players are hoping to find greener pastures on the other side of the portal.
This remains true at the QB position.
This week’s Thursday Night Football has the lowest game total of the season at a mere 29.5 on SI Sportsbook.
The Steelers will face the Patriots, and both will be going to battle without the quarterback they started the season with. The Steelers will go with veteran Mitchell Trubisky, who threw one touchdown last week in relief of Kenny Pickett. Trubisky had four touchdown passes last season for the Steelers, appearing in seven games. The Patriots are expected to start Bailey Zappe again this week, but that could change at any moment.
One thing that never gets old to sports fans is footage of players mic’d up taking us inside the game in some way. Whether the player is wired for sound during the live broadcast or the audio is shared after the fact, bringing fans closer to the action is always a good thing.
The latest episode of Spectrum SportsNet’s Backstage Lakers includes some excellent audio of two of the best players in the NBA discussing real-time adjustments in the middle of the game.
The year 2023 brought fans of sports and music the most zeitgeist-y celebrity relationship of the decade and one of the most inescapable of the century.
Since appearing at the Chiefs‘ 41–10 win over the Bears on Sept. 24, musician Taylor Swift has rarely been far away from Kansas City tight end Travis Kelce for too long and vice versa. Their relationship has multiplied the spotlight on them and everyone in their orbit in a way rarely seen in our atomized culture.
Deion Sanders might not be the most self-aware man on the planet.
Sanders and Colorado recently wrapped his first season with the program, and it was arguably a disaster. The team finished 4-8 after starting 3-0.
The 1-8 skid was downright embarrassing. Not only was it embarrassing, but it played out in the national spotlight thanks to all the attention ginned up by Sanders and his sons and the filming of the Amazon series, “Coach Prime.”
Deion Sanders went 4-8 in his first season at Colorado.
Texas A&M is expected to hire Kansas State offensive coordinator Collin Klein to lead the Aggies’ offense under new head coach Mike Elko, according to Tim Fitzgerald of 247Sports.
Klein, the former Wildcats quarterback, has been coaching for nearly 10 years. The 2012 Heisman Trophy finalist started his coaching career as a graduate assistant at KSU in ‘14 before becoming the quarterbacks coach at Northern Iowa in ’16.
Texas A&M has added highly touted offensive coordinator Collin Klein to head coach Mike Elko’s staff.
Photo by Maja Hitij/Getty Images
We regret to inform you another cross country skiier has frozen his penis.
A risk of injury is innate in any sport. You might sprain your ankle playing basketball, hurt your knee in football, or damage an elbow while pitching. The world of cross country skiing is the same, except YOU MIGHT FREEZE YOUR PENIS SOLID!
Regrettably the icy north has claimed another phallus as Sweden’s Calle Halfvarsson is the latest cross country skier to freeze his penis during a race in Ruka, Finland.
A little over a week after Frank Reich’s sacking, the Panthers’ organization has taken a crippling blow from a recent report by The Athletic.
Sources with Carolina depicted a “Hunger Games” culture within the franchise, one that featured none of the hit series’ merciless violence but did include several instances of back-stabbing, according to Joseph Person and Dianna Russini.
“Team sources described a “Hunger Games” culture at Bank of America Stadium.
Welcome to Week 14 of the fantasy football season!
This week has only two teams on a bye (Cardinals, Commanders), which leaves managers to fill fewer lineup holes. As always. I’ve used a full-point PPR scoring system, which you can use in addition to the Week 14 edition of Start Em, Sit Em.
At Sports Illustrated, we always have you covered!
Be sure to check back for updates … and good luck this week!
Week 14 Defense/Special Teamns Rankings
Good morning, I’m Dan Gartland. I wish I stayed up late enough to catch the end of the Lakers-Suns thriller last night.
In today’s SI:AM:
📝 The NCAA’s proposed new structure
⚾ The Dodgers admit they’re interested in Ohtani
🇨🇦 Why Ohtani makes sense for the Blue Jays
Could this fix the NCAA?
The NCAA is at a crossroads.
There’s enough downtime during an NFL game that, inevitably, some non-football conversations come up. But the one caught by the NFL Films cameras between Rams star wide receivers Cooper Kupp and Puka Nacua may just be the weirdest one yet. The subject matter in question: anime.
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