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News, Scores, Teams, Stories & More on Northeast OH Sports on cleveland.com

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    Raiders head coach Jon Gruden reportedly got a $100 million contract to return to the NFL. Oakland lost the season opener to the Rams.

    Oakland Raiders head coach Jon Gruden reportedly got a $100 million contract to return to the NFL, but it looks like the returns will be slow to come. The Raiders lost their opening game to the Los Angeles Rams, 33-13. Some believe this early season game is a harbinger of things to come for the team and Gruden should just go back to the announcing booth. Others think Gruden can still bring the Raiders back to the promised land. What do you think? 

    PERSPECTIVES

    It's been 10 years since Jon Gruden has coached an NFL game and it showed in his first game on Monday Night Football. Gruden looked lost at times and led the Raiders to a double-digit loss. $100 million is too much for a coach that loses that big. He should've just stayed in his cushy broadcast job where there is no pressure to perform.

    $100 million is a lot to shell out for a coach, but it isn't without purpose. Gruden is getting a huge payday, but so are the Raiders. The team was on the verge of having a disastrous divorce from Oakland, losing millions of fans in the Bay Area.

    But with the hiring of Jon Gruden, it gives the Oakland fans something to root for despite the team's eventual move. Plus, he's one of the smartest coaches the league has ever seen. He belongs on the sidelines. Here is Will Reeve Jr. with more:

    That means that Gruden will not only provide Bay Area fans a feeling of connectivity to the past over the long haul after their relocation, but he is the ultimate coach in terms of public relations to lead Oakland's return to championship form.
    As such, analysts would be wise to look at Gruden's fat contract for what it is, a shrewd marketing, public relations and football decision that should pay dividends for a franchise that felt as if it was reeling just a few short weeks ago.

    The Tylt is focused on debates and conversations around news, current events and pop culture. We provide our community with the opportunity to share their opinions and vote on topics that matter most to them. We actively engage the community and present meaningful data on the debates and conversations as they progress. The Tylt is a place where your opinion counts, literally. The Tylt is an Advance Local Media, LLC property. Join us on Twitter @TheTylt, on Instagram @TheTylt or on Facebook, we'd love to hear what you have to say.


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    Ohio State has five starters from Texas, including three players from the 2017 recruiting class who were among the top-10 in the state. Watch video

    COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Rather than focus on what Ohio State has, sophomore cornerback Jeffrey Okudah allowed himself for a few seconds on Tuesday to think about the one who got away.

    "It would've been really nice to get Marvin Wilson and make it four," he said.

    Give the home state a break, Jeff. Didn't Ohio State take enough from Texas in the 2017 recruiting class? That's when the Buckeyes signed Okudah, linebacker Baron Browning and running back J.K. Dobbins, three of the top-six players in the state.

    Wilson, a defensive tackle who eventually picked Florida State, would have been the five-star icing on OSU's Texas sheet cake. The Buckeyes ended up with plenty of Texas flavor anyway.

    No. 4 Ohio State plays No. 15 TCU on Saturday night in the Mecca of Texas football, AT&T Stadium in Arlington. On that same night, the Texas Longhorns host USC in Austin. That's a nice showcase of Lone Star State football, even if UT still has strides to make as a program and USC is coming off a loss. These are strong brands, a steady top-25 presence in TCU, national recruiters in Ohio State and USC, and the flagship program of the most football-crazed state in the country.

    Which makes it a bit crazy to think that Ohio State could arguably be showcasing the most Texas talent out of all of them.

    First, a disclaimer: Everyone recruits Texas. Here, we're talking about elite Texas talent.

    USC has five players from Texas on its roster, but none of them ranked among the top-10 players in the state coming out of high school. TCU obviously has a lot of in-state talent. The majority of its roster is locally sourced, but it doesn't have any players who ranked among the top-10 in the state. Texas does, thanks in large part to a 2018 recruiting class that saw seven of the state's top-10 players going to Austin, and for at least one year reversing the course of the state's best players picking someone other than the Longhorns.

    But what Ohio State did in 2017 positions the Buckeyes with four starters who ranked among the top-10 in Texas coming out of high school, plus another in guard Demetrius Knox was No. 15 in the Class of 2014. Entering this season, Texas had only three top-10 in-state players listed as starters.

    "You kinda feel like you brought a part of home with you to Ohio," Okudah said.

    It's worth wondering if Ohio State can ever pull off something like that again.

    Texas will always be a part of OSU's recruiting plan. In addition to starters Okudah, Browning, Dobbins, Knox and Kendall Sheffield, Ohio State also has freshman quarterback Matthew Baldwin and freshman receiver Ellijah Gardiner. In the 2019 recruiting class, the Buckeyes have a commitment from five-star receiver Garrett Wilson, an Ohio transplant who plays at Lake Travis High School outside of Austin.

    OSU can still steal the best players in Texas on an individual basis, and it certainly didn't hurt that Wilson, the No. 2 player in the state, has Ohio ties. But matching the depth of what happened in 2017 again could prove difficult ... for any program outside of Texas.

    Consider that since 2000, only one other program outside the state has signed three of the top-10 players in Texas. Oklahoma has done it three times (2004, 2005 and 2008) and is on track to do it again in 2019. But leaving Texas for Oklahoma can, in many respects, feel like staying home.

    Leaving Texas for Ohio State, especially at the rate the top players did in 2017, is a little different.

    "I think its shows people they can venture out farther," Browning said. "You don't have to settle for what's around you. Get out of your comfort zone."

    That's the thing, though. Even if you want to venture out from home base in Texas, there are five Power Five programs in the state, and two more in Oklahoma. Plenty of options to play high-level football without getting on a plane.

    Those schools don't get them all. Alabama (Sheffield originally signed with Alabama in 2015 before transferring to Ohio State), USC, Florida, LSU and others have come into Texas in recent years and stolen some of the state's best players. It's just that nobody did it like Ohio State did in 2017.

    Even Oklahoma has only signed three of the top six in Texas once since 2000.

    But with Texas head coach Tom Herman set on keeping talent at home, Jimbo Fisher now at Texas A&M, and Oklahoma a fixture in the College Football Playoff race for the last few years -- it just seems like it would be getting increasingly difficult for programs outside of Texas and Oklahoma to routinely go get the best players in Texas, or at least come anywhere close to pulling out three of the top six like the Buckeyes did two years ago.

    In 2018, Herman signed seven of the top-10. Two signed with A&M and one with Alabama. In 2019, three of the top-10 are committed to A&M, three are committed to Oklahoma, two to Texas, one to Ohio State and one player -- four-star receiver Lewis Cine -- is uncommitted.

    That's how it's supposed to be in Texas.

    But for once class at least, Ohio State turned that on its head.


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    Saturday's USC vs. Texas is only a big game in reputation. Watch video

    CLEVELAND, Ohio - There was a time when a game between USC and Texas generated enough noise to drown out any other college football game played during the same weekend.

    Not this year.

    The Longhorns will visit the No. 22 Trojans at 8 p.m. Saturday on Fox. The game clearly isn't close to when the two teams played in the 2005 National Championship, but the reputation of these two blue-blood programs carries enough weight for the game to be shown in prime time.

    Elton Alexander and I discuss this game and others in our latest college football video.

    Fourth-ranked Ohio State will get its first real test of the season at No. 15 TCU, 8 p.m. Saturday on ABC.

    It's a test the Buckeyes will surely pass against a TCU team that has victories over Southern and SMU, two teams whose only benefit was getting a big paycheck in playing against the Horned Frogs.

    The best game of the night belongs to No. 12 LSU at No. 7 Auburn, 3:30 p.m. Saturday on CBS. Alexander points out how LSU was considered a team in rebuilding mode but has established itself as a team to watch, at least through the first two games of the season.

    There's also No. 17 Boise State at No. 24 Oklahoma State, 3:30 p.m. Saturday on ESPN.


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    The Indians are finally putting the pieces of their roster back together, but with 17 games left in the regular season is there enough time to build momentum for the postseason?

    ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - Edwin Encarnacion's ears were ready for the sound of bat on ball Tuesday night. He may have been the only one inside Tropicana Field who was.

    Jason Kipnis was standing in center field wearing Austin Jackson's glove and wondering if a fly ball would come his way.

    Rookie Shane Bieber was on the mound. Before the game, fellow rookie Aaron Plukto told him, "Do you know that everyone in our starting lineup has played in at least one All-Star Game? Everyone that is except you." It was the first time that's happened with the Indians since Oct. 2, 1999 (Kenny Lofton, Omar Vizquel, Roberto Alomar, Manny Ramirez, Jim Thome, Harold Baines, David Justice, Travis Fryman and Sandy Alomar Jr.).

    Manager Terry Francona sat in the dugout doing the math in his head. Chris Antonetti, president of baseball operations, was sitting in the seats adding and subtracting the same numbers.

    There are 17 games left in the regular season. Andrew Miller came back Monday. Josh Donaldson was activated Tuesday. Trevor Bauer is going to throw a bullpen on Wednesday.

    Could this roster, after a season of stops and starts, finally be getting healthy? If so, are 17 games enough to change it from a talented, but sluggish entity that hasn't been pushed all season into a sharper, more competitive instrument? One ready to face the defending World Series champion in the first round of the postseason?

    The consensus was yes following the Indians' 2-0 win over the Rays. When the support wasn't full throated, there was at least the feeling that the Indians are in a better spot than they were last year when Michael Brantley and Lonnie Chisenhall limped into the ALDS after missing most of the second half and were immediately exposed by the Yankees' pitching staff.

    To say nothing of Corey Kluber's performance in Games 2 and 5. Last year at this time Kluber was on the way to being named AL Pitcher of the Month for September as he reeled off win after win. The finishing kick resulted in a second Cy Young award, but Kluber was not the same pitcher in the ALDS. He contends that he was good enough to pitch, but something was wrong.

    Francona told reporters before Tuesday night's game that Kluber will skip a start this weekend against Detroit so they can align him to start Game 1 of the ALDS on Oct. 5. The extra rest should come in handy as well.

    Tuesday night in the sixth inning, Tyler Glasnow, Tampa Bay's talented 6-8 right-hander, had one out with Encarnacion at the plate. He threw a 95 mph first-pitch fastball to Encarnacion. It left Encarnacion's bat at 107.7 mph, according to Statcast, and landed in the second section of seats behind the left field wall.

    How loud was the meeting between bat and ball? It sounded like there was a microphone inside Encarnacion's bat attached to a Marshall amp cranked to max volume. There were only 10,599 people at the Trop so there was plenty of reverb and echo as well.

    Asked if the sound hurt his ears, Encarnacion smiled and said, "No, I was ready or that one."

    It was his 30th home run and 96th RBI of the season. He is the only player to hit 30 or more homers in each of the last seven years. The last player to do that was Detroit's Miguel Cabrera from 2007 through 2013.

    "It's unbelievable, man," said Encarnacion. "I never expected to have a season like the one I've been having. Seven straight years of 30 homers or more. . . I'm very proud about what I've been doing."

    Put Encarnacion down as a yes vote to the question of whether there is enough time to incorporate Donaldson, his old Toronto teammate, into the lineup and make it effective and dangerous.

    "All the players we have here know what they have to do," said Encarnacion. "Donaldson is a veteran guy. All the young players know what they have to do. There are a lot of games left for us to get everything together like the way we've been doing. I think it's something we're going to enjoy."

    Donaldson's arrival pushed Jose Ramirez from third to second and Kipnis from second to center field. It's the second straight year Kipnis has made a September move to center field. This time his hamstrings are sound and he can appreciate the tranquility of the outfield.

    "It's definitely a change," said Kipnis, who did not have one ball hit to him. "A lot of adrenaline, someone else's glove. It's weird - in the infield, you're involved in every single play, even the ones that are hit to the outfield, you're the relay guy or the cut guy.

    "Now it's kind of nice. You watch a ground ball hit, and you're just backing up, just standing there a little bit."

    Kipnis never ordered an outfielder's glove after last season because the Indians told him he'd be staying at second base. So he's been using an old glove that Jackson gave him last year. He's been prowling the clubhouse looking for a spare, but he doesn't know if he'll have enough time to break it in.

    As Kipnis was explaining that to reporters, Josh Tomlin walked by and told him, "Hey, I still have my red glove at home if you need it." Said Kipnis, "I hear you baby. I might need it," referring to another glove he experimented with last year.

    Bieber struck out a career-high 11 batters. His career in the big leagues consists of 17 starts and he's won 10 of them. He's the third Indians' pitcher, according to the data available in Baseball Reference, which goes back to 1908, with 10 or more wins in the first 17 games of his career. The others are Vean Gregg (11 wins) and Tomlin (10 wins).

    "It's exciting to be a part of this team right now," said Bieber, 6-0 with a 3.92 ERA in 10 starts on the road.

    Francona and Antonetti are in the business of asking and answering questions. They've been able to answer a few pressing ones lately, but there are always more to come.

    "It's going to take some time now to get guys where they're function at the maximum of what they can do," said Francona. "But for the first time probably all year, we're getting close to where we have our team. Hopefully, nothing else happens and we can work toward becoming a team that could be a factor."

    It certainly isn't an ideal situation.

    "It's probably a little unique to be doing it as this time of year," said Francona. "But I'd rather be doing it now than days before the playoffs. Last year we were so unsettled going in. If you have a lot of question marks, sometimes the answer is going to be no. So you can't have too many."


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    Turpin is TCU's leading receiver and one of the best kick returners in the country. Watch video

    COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Ohio State could be facing the most dangerous return man in the country this week when it faces TCU down in Arlington, Texas. And that's only part of what KaVontae Turpin does.

    Turpin isn't physically imposing. He's 5-foot-9 after all. And his isn't a name you'll hear being thrown around in any conversation about the best players in the country. But he is dangerous, and on a given night could be the difference between a win and a loss for TCU.

    "He's really elusive, probably one of the most elusive players I've seen on film," Ohio State cornerback Jeffrey Okudah said. "I think he's kind of comparable to a Darren Sproles or someone like that. I think as far as gunner-wise, I'm excited to get down the field and see what he's all about."

    Okudah could see a good bit of Turpin on Saturday, both on punt coverage team and as a cornerback covering Turpin when the Horned Frogs' senior is playing receiver. Turpin is TCU's leader in receiving yards and yards from scrimmage through two games, and has nearly 1,800 yards of offense for his career.

    He's also returned five kicks for touchdowns in his career -- one kickoff and four punts, including a punt last week against SMU.

    While not as big, he offers a reminder of what people hoped Dontre Wilson would be for the Buckeyes, or what Demario McCall could still be.

    "Guys like that like space," Okudah said. "I think our job is take all of his space up."

    Doug Lesmerises and Bill Landis talked more about this key Ohio State vs. TCU matchup in the video above.


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    Big Ben and Tomlin were made the NFL admitted it got the Garrett call wrong but not the fumbled punt.

    CLEVELAND, Ohio -- Ben Roethlisberger and Mike Tomlin were both miffed the NFL admitted it got the roughing call wrong on Myles Garrett, but made no mention about failing to overturn an apparent muffed punt in Sunday's 21-21 tie.

    With the Steelers up 21-7 in the fourth quarter, a Pittsburgh punt appeared to hit Nick Chubb in the facemask before the Steelers' Sean Davis corralled it, but officials ruled it a downed punt. Tomlin challenged, but the play stood. A fumble would've given Pittsburgh the ball back at their 47.

    Instead, the Browns went on to score twice in the final 7:32 to tie the game at 21 with 1:58 remaining. The game ended in a tie in overtime after Zane Gonzalez' field goal was blocked.

    Roethlisberger told 93.7 The Fan that he didn't think Garrett's first-quarter hit on him was roughing -- it led to a TD on the next play -- but he lamented the blown overturned fumble.

    "I didn't think there was anything wrong with it," Roethlisberger said of Garrett's hit, via profootballtalk.com. "I wasn't upset about it. I was surprised that they [penalized Garrett] but I wasn't gonna go crazy about it. It just -- I don't understand, why's the NFL have to come out and say that? They sure as heck didn't come out and say that the ball did hit the guy in the head on the punt.

    "Do they have to come out and every call that they make wrong in games, do they come out and say it? So I don't understand why [on] that play particularly they had to come out and say they were wrong. They review plays, and I thought the point of reviewing plays was to get it right. That ball hit that guy's helmet on that punt. It was crazy."

    NFL admits Garrett didn't commit roughing

    Tomlin said the same thing in his Tuesday preseason conference.

    "All of us saw the ball hit that guy,'' he said, via Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. "Why that play was not corrected, I have no idea. Ask New York. They felt comfort talking about the hit on Ben [Roethlisberger] was inappropriately officiated. I'd be interested to see their comments regarding that play."


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    The 11th annual Taste of the Pro Football Hall of Fame - which brings in Hall of Famers and a host of restaurants - is set for this month. It's a fundraiser for Akron-Canton Regional Foodbank.

    CLEVELAND, Ohio - The 11th annual Taste of the Pro Football Hall of Fame is set for Tuesday, Sept. 25.

    Akron-Canton Regional Foodbank's largest fundraiser is 5:30-9 p.m. and will be held outside in the north concourse of Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium. Last year, the event was inside and outside.

    More than 20 local restaurants, regional breweries and national wineries will participate in this year's event, which includes live and silent auctions. A ride on the Goodyear Blimp and a trip to Palm Desert Resort and Country Club in California are up for bid. (A pre-event interactive auction will be live Tuesday, Sept. 18.)

    The event - which up until five years ago was called Taste of the NFL - supports the foodbank's efforts in an eight-county service area.

    Tickets are $150. VIP admission, which is $250, includes lounge access, early admittance, meet-and-greet with Hall of Famers, program recognition and commemorative photo.

    Young professionals can attend for $100.

    Several Hall of Famers are scheduled to attend and sign autographs (listed with their class-enshrined year):

    * Robert Brazile, 2018

    * Walter Jones, 2014

    * Bruce Matthews, 2007

    * Will Shields, 2015

    Participating purveyors:

    * BOMBA Tacos & Rum

    * Canton Brewing Co.

    * Caston & Main Brew Yard

    * Chocolates by Erin

    * Cilantro Thai & Sushi Restaurant

    * Dunkin' Donuts

    * Gervasi Vineyard

    * Hoppin' Frog Brewery

    * Main Street Gourmet

    * Meeker Wines distributed by Esber Beverage

    * Melt Bar and Grilled

    * Pav's Creamery

    * HiHo Brewing Co.

    * Pepsi

    * The Raging Avocado

    * The Rail

    * Robert J. Events & Catering

    * Saffron Patch in the Valley

    * SHY Cellars

    * Street Side / Whiskey Alley

    * Tozzi's of Magnolia

    * Troutman Vineyards

    * The West Side Bakery

    * The Winery at Wolf Creek

    The Pro Football Hall of Fame is at 2121 George Halas Dr. NW, Canton. 

    The event takes place a day after the 20th annual Taste of the Browns at FirstEnergy Stadium. That fundraiser, for the Greater Cleveland Foodbank, is Monday, Sept. 24.


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    Blake Snell was nearly unhittable against the Cleveland Indians on Wednesday. Jose Ramirez's solo home run was his mistake.

    ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - Jose Ramirez hit his first home run in almost a month, but it wasn't enough to save his team from Tampa Bay's Blake Snell.

    Snell no-hit the Indians for six innings Wednesday afternoon before Ramirez started the seventh with a home run to left field. It was Ramirez's 38th homer, but just his first since Aug. 17 as he continues to work his way through a long slump.

    "That will do him some good," said manager Terry Francona, following a 3-1 loss to the Rays at Tropicana Field.

    Ramirez hit a 3-2 pitch from Snell, who passed Corey Kluber to take the MLB lead with 19 victories. Seeing how Ramirez is in a 16-for-95 (.168) skid, it qualifies as his best at-bat in weeks.

    "That was a really good at-bat," said teammate Brandon Guyer. "I feel like that at-bat he was fouling off a lot of pitches and saw just about every pitch (from Snell). You know he's going to come out of whatever he's going through. And to hit a home run off of one of the best pitchers in the game, that's always good to see."

    Snell (19-5, 2.03) has won seven straight starts. Two of his last three have come against the Indians.

    Edwin Encarnacion, who hit his 30th homer on Tuesday night, said Snell used a different approach Wednesday afternoon than he did on Sept. 1 when he beat the Indians, 5-3, in Cleveland. It dealt with the use of his fastball. Snell teased the Indians with it, but didn't throw it in the strike zone.

    "That was the difference with him today," said Encarnacion. "We had a different approach and he didn't throw the fastball at all. He just showed it and then came with the change-up and curveball."

    Fifty-nine of Snell's 104 pitches were curves or change-ups, according to baseballsavant.com, compared to 41 four-seam fastballs.

    "He's got the whole package," said Francona. "I mean he's in the other uniform (so you want to beat him), but my goodness. He's got velocity, breaking ball, change-up. Just seeing how much he's improved from one year to the next - that's pretty special stuff."

    Snell struck out nine in seven innings. He allowed one hit, one run and two walks.

    Carlos Carrasco (16-9, 3.43) allowed a two-run homer to Ji-Man Choi in the first and a sacrifice fly by Kevin Kiermaier in the fifth. It wasn't a lot of damage over seven innings, but it was enough to get him beat.

    He said he was trying to get Choi to hit the ball on the ground, but his two-seam fastball ran right over the middle of the plate at 90 mph.

    "Sometimes when you make those mistakes you're going to pay for it and that's what happened," said Carrasco. "I just tried to get a ground ball. It came right back over the middle and he swung at the first pitch."

    In the fourth inning, Snell went up and in to Encarnacion, who stared at him for several seconds before walking. Carrasco pushed Choi off the plate in the sixth, prompting another staring match.

    "He smiled, so I smiled," said Carrasco. "There was no problem."

    What it means

    The Indians, with 16 games left to play, trail Houston by 10 games to host the best-of-five ALDS starting on Oct. 5. The AL West-leading Astros, who have won 10 of their last 11 games, beat the Tigers on Wednesday.

    The Tribe's magic number to clinch the AL Central, with the Twins beating the Yanks on Wednesday night, remained at three.

    The pitches

    Carrasco threw 101 pitches, 61 (59 percent) for strikes. Snell threw 104 pitches, 62 (59 percent) for strikes.

    Thanks for coming

    The Indians and Rays drew 10,654 to Tropicana Field. First pitch was at 1:10 p.m. with a temperature of 72 degrees inside and 88 degrees outside.

    Next

    The Indians are off Thursday before opening their final homestand of the regular season. Detroit visits for a three-game series starting Friday. Josh Tomlin (1-5, 6.63) will face lefty Matthew Boyd (9-12, 4.11) at 7:10 p.m. SportsTime Ohio, WTAM and WMMS will carry the game.

    Mike Clevinger (11-8, 3.16) and Shane Bieber (10-3, 4.32) will start Saturday and Sunday. Michael Fulmer (3-11, 4.56) will start for the Tigers on Saturday with Francisco Liriano (4-10, 4.65) pitching Sunday.


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    Canelo Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin meet in their rematch Saturday night on HBO PPV.

    CLEVELAND, Ohio - In the midst of all of the accolades and celebration associated with winning the WBC welterweight title, Shawn Porter sought the peace and solitude of his home.

    Porter, a native of Northeast Ohio, defeated Danny Garcia by unanimous decision last weekend in Brooklyn to win the title. This was Porter's second time as champ. He lost the IBF title in 2014 to Kell Brook. The wait was long enough.

    But Porter's celebration of his latest title did not last long as he immediately returned to Las Vegas to rejoin his fiancee, Leticia, and his seven-month old son, Shaddai.

    Despite those comforts, Porter could not avoid the obvious questions when it comes to upcoming fights.

    "There's only two names on the table for me - Errol Spence Jr. and Keith Thurman," Porter said. "I'm being told the Spence fight could happen but we don't know when."

    Although Porter would also seek a fight against Thurman, whom he lost to in 2016,  the WBC could force him to fight contender Yordenis Ugas (23-3, 11 KOs) instead.

    "But I'm sure the WBC would like to see Thurman fight for the title since he vacated the belt," Porter said. "Right now my options are big and I can't wait to get down to task."

    Porter got down in last Saturday's bout against former champion Garcia. Porter's plan to attack the body, box at times and force Garcia to engage worked according to plan.

    "I knew I would be able to outbox him and I knew I'd be able to hit and not get hit," said Porter, who is trained by his father, Kenny. "There were a few times I knew not to come up, and the hook and right hand was right there for me. I was prepared for what he was going to do all night. It all showed up."

    Triple G and Canelo Alvarez

    Saturday's rematch between Canelo Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin has all of the makings of a classic bout based on what we saw in the first encounter and because of the bad blood that's brewed since they last met.

    Alvarez tested positive for trace amounts of the banned substance clenbuterol and blamed the result on contaminated meat in Mexico. The rematch was originally scheduled for May, but Alvarez was suspended because he tested positive. And Triple G spent those months accusing Alvarez of not telling the truth about using steroids.

    Of course Alvarez adamantly took offense to Triple G's accusations which has made the pre-fight hype even more personal between the two fighters.

    That makes Saturday's fight at 10:30 p.m. on HBO's pay-per-view even more intriguing. It's a fight where the perceived hatred between the two fighters could add spice to an already anticipated action bout.

    In the first bout, Alvarez ran out of gas in the middle rounds, and it likely cost him the fight, which ended in a draw. This time the smaller fighter will take advantage of his size and out-quick and out-hit the more natural middleweight in Triple G.

    Triple G will certainly try to prove a point in an attempt to knock out Alvarez, but that will be a mistake. Alvarez will take advantage of the in-coming Golovkin with combinations.

    That will decide the fight.

    Alvarez by unanimous decision.

    Quick jabs

    This week in boxing history

    Sept. 15, 1978: Muhammad Ali gives Leon Spinks a boxing lesson over 15 rounds in their rematch and Ali becomes the first three-time champion in heavyweight boxing history.

    Boxing schedule

    8 p.m., Thursday (ESPN/ESPN Deportes):

    • Jose Ramirez vs. Antonio Orozco, for Ramirez's WBC junior welterweight title

    • Jamel Herring vs. John Vincent Moralde, junior lightweights

    • Hiroki Okada vs. Cristian Coria, junior welterweights

    • Gabe Flores Jr. vs. Roger Gutierrez, 6 rounds, junior lightweights

    • Alexander Besputin vs. Alan Sanchez, 10 rounds, welterweights

    10 p.m., Friday (ESPN/ESPN Deportes):

    • Jose Ramirez vs. Antonio Orozco, for Ramirez's WBC junior welterweight title

    • Jamel Herring vs. John Vincent Moralde, junior lightweights

    • Hiroki Okada vs. Cristian Coria, junior welterweights

    9 p.m., Saturday (HBO PPV):

    • Gennady Golovkin vs. Canelo Alvarez, rematch, for Golovkin's WBA/WBC middleweight title

    • Jaime Munguia vs. Brandon Cook, for Munguia's WBO junior middleweight title

    • David Lemieux vs. Gary "Spike" O'Sullivan, middleweights

    • Roman "Chocolatito" Gonzalez vs. Moises Fuentes, junior bantamweights

    • Vergil Ortiz Jr. vs. Roberto Ortiz, junior welterweights


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    Brees believes Baker Mayfield can be 'a lot better than him.'

    BEREA, Ohio -- Future Hall of Fame quarterback Drew Brees, who will face the Browns on Sunday in New Orleans, paid Baker Mayfield the ultimate compliment on Wednesday.

    "I think he can be a lot better than me,'' Brees said on a conference call. "Man, he's got all the tools. He's more athletic, he probably can run around better, he's got a stronger arm. Listen, he's got all the tools.''

    Despite the fact Brees grew up not far from Mayfield, their paths have never crossed. But he followed the Heisman Trophy winner's career at Oklahoma nonetheless, in part because those in the 6-foot and under club stick together.

    "It's funny, to this day I've never spoken with Baker,'' he said. "But he's from just outside of Austin, Texas, Lake Travis High School, I believe, which is right down the road. I followed his college career, couldn't have been more impressed with what he was able to accomplish in college, especially last year.

    "Really impressed with the way that he plays his game. I think he's a great competitor. I've never met him, so I can't say I know him at all, but that's just my observations from afar. I think he's going to be a real good professional quarterback. I love his competitiveness and his playmaking ability.''

    Tyrod Taylor wasn't surprised Josh Gordon started against the Steelers: 'I know the gameplan'

    Saints coach Sean Payton admitted he spent a lot of time studying Mayfield coming out this year as a possible heir apparent to Brees, who's 39 and in his 18th season. The Saints recently traded for Teddy Bridgewater.

    "(Mayfield's) someone that was very impressive,'' said Payton. "When you track his college career and you see the production, there's a confidence with him. You see real good leadership skills.

    "The thing that was impressive about him is that you could see him move in the pocket and still locate balls down the field and it wasn't just take off to scramble. So he hurts you in the pocket and even with plays that developed a little later.''

    With Mayfield having to wait his turn behind Tyrod Taylor, Brees said he'd advise him, "Man, be just a sponge. As a young player you try to learn everything you can about the game. And he gets to play behind a seasoned veteran like Tyrod Taylor, who's started a bunch of games in this league and won a bunch of games, that led Buffalo to the playoffs last year.

    "He gets to play for a coordinator like Todd Haley, who's a longtime coordinator and been a head coach, coached Big Ben (Roethlisberger) in Pittsburgh for the last number of years, going up against a defense like Gregg Williams' every day in practice. Gregg does a lot of good things defensively, has been a great defensive coordinator in this league for a long time. So he's got the opportunity to learn from a lot of good resources there.''

    Brees admitted he takes pride in paving the way for a 6-0 QB such as Mayfield to be drafted No. 1 overall.

    "You know, when I came in the league, my rookie year was in San Diego in 2001 and Doug Flutie was the starting quarterback,'' he said. "So you talk about a guy who has overcome the odds every step of the way with his size and the preconceived notions people had about his ability to play the position. He played 20 years of professional football at every level, USFL, NFL, CFL, then back to the NFL and played at a very, very high level.

    "So I had a chance to learn from one of the absolute best in my opinion, especially when it came to just having to at times just make plays because of your size and maybe certain limitations. He would get the job done. So I had a chance to learn from a guy like that and I owe him a lot of credit. We call it the 6-foot and under club. All the 6-foot guys, we kind of know what it's like. We kind of have the chip on our shoulder 'cause we've heard it our whole life. I just kind of chuckle at it. Maybe it is something. Maybe it isn't. But it gives us an edge."
     
    Is Mayfield now a member of the club?

    "Well, is he 6-foot and under?"
     
    "6 5/8,'' he was told.

    "All right, well, that counts,'' he said. "He's in the club."


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    Ogbah suffered an ankle injury during Sunday's game against the Steelers.

    BEREA, Ohio -- Things can change quickly in the NFL. Two days ago, it didn't sound great for Emmanuel Ogbah with head coach Hue Jackson saying he may miss time with an ankle injury.

    Ogbah, who was seen on Monday wearing a walking boot, missed practice on Wednesday, but Jackson sounded a little more optimistic.

    "Not going to rule him out, but we will see how he progresses during the week," he said.

    Ogbah suffered the injury to his left ankle on the final play of the first quarter on Sunday against the Steelers. He came back into the game but played just 27 snaps, 32 percent of the team's defensive plays.

    The reason for the optimism is that, upon further testing, it wasn't a high ankle sprain for Ogbah, the kind that could cost a player multiple weeks and continue to impact performance for weeks to come.

    Pump the brakes a little bit on that optimism, though. We should probably wait until Ogbah gets back on the practice field before penciling him in to play against the Saints.

    The Browns were down another defender on Wednesday, too. Linebacker Christian Kirksey was limited with injuries to his shoulder and ankle. Jackson didn't seem worried about Kirksey's ability to play Sunday. 

    It wasn't all bad news. Linebacker James Burgess, who was unable to practice last week and missed Sunday's game against Pittsburgh with a concussion, was full-go on Wednesday. So was left tackle Desmond Harrison, listed with a shoulder injury.

    Cornerback E.J. Gaines, working his way back from a knee sprain, was also limited.

    On the Saints side of things wide receivers Michael Thomas (illness) and Ted Ginn Jr. (knee) did not practice, nor did defensive tackle Tyeler Davison (foot). Guard Andrus Peat (ankle) was limited. Peat was inactive on Sunday against the Buccaneers.


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    Brees had nothing but good things to say about the Browns rookie quarterback. Watch video

    BEREA, Ohio -- The Browns are preparing for the Saints on Sunday afternoon. Drew Brees spoke to the local media here on Wednesday and he had high praise for rookie quarterback Baker Mayfield.

    Brees said Baker Mayfield "can be a lot better than me."

    Mary Kay Cabot and I talked about that following practice and availability on Wednesday. We also talked about Tyrod Taylor looking to bounce back following a poor performance Sunday against Pittsburgh and Josh Gordon's role. Then we talked about Emmanuel Ogbah not being ruled out just yet.


    Get the best Browns news and perspective in your inbox at lunch time every weekday. Sign up for our Browns newsletter.


    Go inside the Browns every week with cleveland.com's Orange and Brown Podcast, featuring Mary Kay Cabot and Dan Labbe. Listen and subscribe here.


    Want more Browns? Subscribe to our Browns YouTube channel for interviews, analysis and more.


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    The RubberDucks trail the best-of-five Class AA Eastern League Championship Series, 2-0.

    andrew calica.jpgAndrew Calica 

    AKRON, Ohio -- Tyler Krieger's sacrifice fly in the first inning gave the RubberDucks a 1-0 lead over the New Hampshire Fisher Cats and ...

    ... that would be it.

    Cats right-hander Jon Harris and three other pitchers combined to hold the RubberDucks scoreless the rest of the way as New Hampshire cruised to a 6-1 victory Wednesday night at Canal Park.

    The Cats take a 2-0 lead in the best-of-five Class AA Eastern League Championship Series back to Manchester, N.H., for Friday night's Game 3.

    Things unraveled for Akron in the third inning when New Hampshire opened the inning with four straight singles off RubberDucks starter Kyle Dowdy. By the time Dowdy got things contained, the Cats had a 3-1 lead.

    Dowdy's night ended with one out in the sixth inning after he allowed a run on a fielder's choice to give New Hampshire a 4-1 lead.

    Akron would end up using nine pitchers overall but New Hampshire added two more runs in the eighth to settle matters.

    The RubberDucks had only six hits, with Andrew Calica going 2-for-4.

    Notes: New Hampshire's Harold Ramirez was ejected from the game in the seventh following an argument with home plate umpire Jacob Metz. ... The Fisher Cats are a perfect 5-0 in the playoffs.

    See the box score from the game.


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    Indians All-Star Jose Ramirez has seen his average drop from .305 to 280 since Aug. 14.

    ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - It was not the greatest of trips for Jose Ramirez and the Indians.

    Yes, he prevented the Indians from being no-hit and shut out in Wednesday's 3-1 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays. On Sunday in Toronto, he stole second base in the first inning to become the third 30-30 man in team history along with Joe Carter and Grady Sizemore.

    Besides that, it has been almost a month of silence from the man who has been the American League's starting All-Star third baseman for the last two years.

    Ramirez's homer off Blake Snell in the seventh inning Wednesday ended Snell's bid for a no-hitter and gave Ramirez his 38th homer of the season. Not that 38 homers isn't something worth celebrating - his career high until this year was 29 - but it was Ramirez's first long ball in 88 at-bats. He hit No. 37 off Baltimore's David Hess in the first inning on Aug. 17. Not to mention that it was his first homer off a lefty since he went deep against Martin Perez of Texas on July 20.

    So the Indians are hopeful that Wednesday's homer can help Ramirez get back to the hitter who went into the All-Star break batting .302 (108-for-358) with 29 homers, 70 RBI and a 1.029 OPS. Since the break, however, he's hitting .235 (40-for-170) with nine homers and 29 RBI.

    "We've all seen it," said manager Terry Francona. "You know it's there and you know he's going to get hot. Especially (hitting a home run) off a guy like Snell, that will do him some good."

    Snell is a 19-game winner and a strong AL Cy Young candidate.

    Ramirez's average has plunged from .305 on Aug. 14 to .280 after Wednesday's loss. In that stretch, he's hitting .168 (16-for-95) with two homers and 10 RBI. His OPS has dropped from 1.054 to .967.

    Despite Ramirez's slide, he is the first player to combine this much power and speed in one year (32 steals and 38 homers) since Matt Kemp hit 39 homers and stole 40 bases for the Dodgers in 2011. The last American Leaguer to put up similar numbers was New York's Alfonso Soriano (38 homers, 35 steals) in 2003. The only other switch-hitter to do it was Carlos Beltran, who hit 38 homers and stole 42 bases for Kansas City and Houston in 2004.

    "He's extremely intelligent about how teams are pitching him," said Francona, "and what they're trying to do to him. He's just in a little bit of a lull here, but he'll get going again. He can hit any pitch. It's not like he can't hit a certain pitch or he can't get to a fastball. He'll be fine."

    The Indians went 3-4 on this seven-game trip against the rebuilding Blue Jays and the Rays. The Blue Jays have been eliminated from the postseason and the Rays nearly so, but it's fair to say that the Indians were out-hustled and out-enthused by both teams.

    Don't be a stranger: The Indians, with just three games left against Boston, are 14-17 against the AL East. Baltimore is the only team they've posted a winning record against.

    Toronto and the Rays went 4-3 against the Tribe, while the Yankees were 5-2. The Indians and Red Sox have split four games.

    Tough opponent: Remember when Carlos Carrasco seemed to flirt with a no-hitter every time he took the mound? The year was 2015 and the closest he came to a no-hitter was against the Rays on July 1. There were two outs in the ninth when Joey Butler lined a two-strike single into right field to ruin Carrasco's date with history.

    This year, however, the Rays have been hard on him. He's 0-2 with 5.40 ERA against the Rays in the second half. When he's not facing Tampa, Carrasco is 5-2 with a 1.80 ERA since the break.

    Finally: The Indians were held to one hit Wednesday for the second time this season and the first time since April 3 against the Angels. ... Andrew Miller relieved Carrasco and pitched a scoreless eighth inning. It was his second scoreless inning in the last three days.

    "He commanded all his pitches," said Francona. "His breaking ball is just almost devastating. And he's throwing his fastball through the glove better -- certainly better than he did before. And it'll continue to get better." The Indians brought Miller off the disabled list on Monday.


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    Check here for the live first-round leaderboard for the LPGA Tour's Evian Championship 2018 on Thursday, Sept. 13, in France.

    CLEVELAND, Ohio -- Brooke Henderson, Minjee Lee, Ariya Jutanugarn, Inbee Park, Lexi Thompson, Jin Young Ko, Anna Nordqvist, Moriya Jutanugarn and Sung Hyun Park are among those in the field for Evian Championship 2018 this week in France.

    LPGA TOUR
    EVIAN CHAMPIONSHIP
    Site: Evian-les-Bains, France.
    Course: Evian Resort GC. Yardage: 6,523. Par: 71.
    Purse: $3,850,000. Winner's share: $577,500.
    Television: Thursday-Friday, 5-8 a.m., 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. (Golf Channel); Saturday, 6-11:30 a.m. (Golf Channel); Sunday, 4:30-10 a.m. (Golf Channel).
    Defending champion: Anna Nordqvist.
    Race to CME Globe leader: Ariya Jutanugarn.
    Previous tournament: Marina Alex won the Cambia Portland Classic.
    Notes: This is the fifth and final major on the LPGA Tour schedule. .... The Evian was cut short to 54 holes last year because of weather delays. ... It was the second time it was a 54-hole event since the LPGA Tour gave it major championship status in 2013. ... The tournament began in 1994 as a Ladies European Tour event. ... Inbee Park won the Evian in 2012, the year before it became a major. She has won the other majors on the LPGA Tour schedule. ... Four women have won the four majors this year. If a different player wins Evian, it would be the fourth consecutive year of no multiple major champions in a season. ... The Rolex Annika Major Award will be decided after the Evian, going to the major champion with the best record in the five majors. U.S. Women's Open champion Ariya Jutanugarn has a large lead over Women's PGA champion Sung Hyun Park. If any of the four major champions this year win the Evian, she wins the award. ... The LPGA Tour is off next week before starting its seven-week swing through Asia, which includes the International Crown.
    Next tournament: Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia, Sept. 27-30.
    Online: www.lpga.com

    (Fact box from Associated Press.)


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    Ohio State and TCU meet on Saturday night in Arlington, Texas.

    COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Ohio State football plays its first ranked opponent on Saturday against TCU.

    Who: No. 4 Ohio State vs. No. 15 TCU.

    Time: 8 p.m.

    Where: AT&T Stadium (Arlington, Texas).

    TV: ABC.

    Announcers: Chris Fowler, Kirk Herbstreit, Maria Taylor.

    Radio: Ohio State's state-wide radio affiliates can be found here.

    This meeting was supposed to be the first of a home-and-home in 2018 and 2019, and was originally scheduled to played on TCU's campus in Fort Worth. Instead the teams will meet in the home of the Dallas Cowboys, OSU's third game in that stadium since 2014.


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    Doug and Bill give their outrageous predictions for Ohio State's game on Saturday against TCU. Watch video

    COLUMBUS, Ohio -- You know what's outrageous? Moving this game from TCU's campus this year, eliminating the home-and-home series and making it a one-off at AT&T Stadium. Wouldn't you want to see the Horned Frogs in Ohio Stadium next year?

    Instead you'll get Florida Atlantic (Hey Lane Kiffin, maybe), Cincinnati and Miami (Ohio). Thanks, Gary Patterson. But those are complaints for next year.

    No. 4 Ohio State and No. 15 TCU will meet in Arlington, Texas on Saturday. Still prime time. Still a game with potential College Football Playoff implications.

    We're giving you our outrageous predictions now. Game picks come on Friday.

    Doug Lesmerises is picking 100 rushing yards for both OSU running backs J.K. Dobbins and Mike Weber.

    Bill Landis is picking a three-turnover game for quarterback Dwayne Haskins that still ends with an Ohio State win (spoiler alert).

    Watch the video above to hear Doug and Bill discuss more about their outrageous predictions.


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    "There is little doubt but that the Ohio State job is considered an advancement," a Texas paper wrote then of the move from TCU to Columbus.

    COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Ohio State, willing to overpay and keen on beating Michigan, forced out its coach and stole a rising star.

    It's a story fit for the modern day, but one that happened 84 years ago, when the Buckeyes snatched away TCU's football coach.

    Saturday night, Ohio State and TCU will meet for the first time since 1973, and the sixth time overall, with the Buckeyes holding a 4-1-1 lead in the series since they swooped into Fort Worth and plucked out an offensive genius.

    In 1934, in search of a replacement for Sam Willaman, whose departure was seen as a foregone conclusion the moment he lost to Michigan in 1933, though it was the Buckeyes' only loss of the season, The Plain Dealer listed up to 20 names of college football coaches in the running for the job. The coaches at Purdue and the University of Chicago turned down the Buckeyes. No others on the list got the nod.

    "In an effort to hire a mentor well-known to Ohio fans," Milton Yelsky wrote in The Plain Dealer on March 11, 1934, "the Texas Christian coach was neglected during early stages of the coach-seeking game." 

    Yelsky also called Ohio State "skeptical at first at hiring a 'minor league' coach."

    Eventually, athletic director Lynn St. John, the namesake of St. John Arena across from Ohio Stadium, got on the phone this man from Texas, and asked the innovative, hard-charging, Nebraska-bred football coach at TCU to take a train to Columbus.

    "There is little doubt but that the Ohio State job is considered an advancement," wrote Bill Van Fleet in the Galveston (Texas) Daily News in late February, as the eventual hiring was viewed as a certainty, "for the Buckeyes play in the Big Ten and have 15,000 students behind them. Ohio State was considered one of the strongest teams in the country last fall, and the clash with Michigan held the spotlight over our weekend."

    On those same newspaper pages, Francis A. Schmidt was surprised that the Associated Press caught wind of his discussions with the Buckeyes. 

    "I don't know what to say," Schmidt said. "I didn't know anybody knew anything about it."

    A week later, after a 1,000 mile journey to Columbus, Schmidt became the 14th football coach in Ohio State history. He'd win more games than all but one of his predecessors, fueled by a diverse offense that served as a forebearer to the West Coast offense. The modern passing game draws a line from Schmidt to the legendary Bill Walsh. Those two are connected by Sid Gillman, an assistant to Schmidt at Ohio State who is credited by Walsh as one of his greatest influences.

    Weeks after Schmidt was hired, OSU assistant Ernie Godfrey told John Dietrich of The Plain Dealer at a banquet in Cleveland that Schmidt's offense "includes almost every conceivable formation - double wing and single wing backs, semi-punt formations, balanced and unbalanced lines, with something new all the time."

    Schmidt "adds tricks to his offense as he thinks of them," Yelsky wrote in his assessment, "and is primarily concerned with getting that elusive touchdown."

    It was an offense developed at the smallest school in the Southwest Conference, with an enrollment of about 1,000 students back then. But the Horned Frogs beat the big boys, as Schmidt went 45-6-5 in five years. He still ranks fourth on TCU's all-time wins list, a list headed by current coach Gary Patterson's 160 victories.

    A former Cleveland Indians minor leaguer named Dutch Meyer was promoted from assistant to head coach upon Schmidt's departure and won 105 games himself, and TCU claims national titles from Meyer's 12-1 season in 1935 and 11-0 season in 1938.

    So the Horned Frogs survived, though they knew what they were losing in the 48-year-old Schmidt. who more than doubled his salary to $9,500 a year in his new job.

    Weldon Hart, writing in The Austin Statesman, the city paper for the University of Texas, thanked Ohio State for getting Schmidt out of the Southwest Conference, where he'd won two titles in five years.

    "That bird was getting too tough!" Hart opined.

    In Ohio, Schmidt made it clear he knew exactly what was expected of him. In his Texas twang, he explained his approach to his new rival with a phrase heretofore known only in the Southwest. Legend has it that Schmidt unveiled the phrase to the world, and in the process put his stamp on the rivalry.

    "Hell, they put their pants on one leg at a time, the same as we do," Schmidt said of the Wolverines, as quoted by The Plain Dealer and others. Seizing the theme, Ohio State adopted the tradition of awarding Gold Pants trinkets to the Buckeyes who defeat the Wolverines on the field of play. 

    In another nod to the modern day, the PD editorial page wondered why everyone made such a fuss over one game, and made light of Schmidt's words.

    "Schmidt, or someone, should impress upon Ohio alumni the folly in attaching so much importance to a single game," the editorial read. "As strong as Michigan has been over the years, it is folly to believe and hope that an Ohio team year after year can meet its greatest rival on even terms.

    "Schmidt says something about Michigan players putting their pants on one leg at a time. His problem will be that of keeping the shirts on overzealous Ohio alumni."

    Schmidt kept those alumni at bay, winning his first four games against Michigan, the Buckeyes shutting them out each game between 1934 and 1937.

    He never beat Michigan again.

    His career ended on a three-game rivalry losing streak, his last loss to the Wolverines 40-0 in 1940. Weeks later, the OSU Board of Trustees met to discuss Schmidt's status, and aware of their doubts, Schmidt resigned, his final record with the Buckeyes 39-16-1. He would be inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1971.

    "Francis A. Schmidt, the tall, graying Texan who made football a spectacle with his wide-open razzle-dazzle style of play, stepped out tonight as head coach at Ohio State University," the Associated Press wrote on Dec. 16, 1940.

    Four years later, at the age of 58, Schmidt, who had been in failing health, was dead.

    He is survived by the offense you watch today, and the Gold Pants the Buckeyes fight for each November.

    When you watch the Buckeyes and Horned Frogs on Saturday night, you may thank TCU for him.


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    The Baltimore Ravens at Cincinnati Bengals kickoff week 2 on Thursday night.

    CLEVELAND, Ohio - The battle of the AFC continues in Week 2 when the Baltimore Ravens play the Cincinnati Bengals in Thursday night football on the NFL Network.

    The Bengals are coming off a come-from-behind victory over the Indianapolis Colts, and the Ravens defeated Buffalo by 44.

    The two teams split the season series last year with the Bengals winning the regular season finale in Baltimore.

    Sunday begins with the Kansas City Chiefs at the Pittsburgh Steelers.

    The Steelers have won four out of the last five against the Chiefs. The Steelers will play their second straight game without Le'Veon Bell, who continues to hold out with his contract dispute.

    The Steelers will play for the second time with second-year back James Connor, who had two touchdowns and nearly two hundred yards against the Cleveland Browns.

    The New York Giants and Dallas Cowboys play in Sunday's late game. The Cowboys sputtered on offense last week and the Giants, winners of only three games last season, lost in their opener to Jacksonville.

    Thursday

    Baltimore Ravens at Cincinnati Bengals, 8:20 p.m., NFL Network

    Sunday

    Houston Texans at Tennessee Titans, 1 p.m., CBS

    Kansas City Chiefs at Pittsburgh Steelers, 1 p.m., CBS

    Indianapolis Colts at Washington, 1 p.m., CBS

    Miami Dolphins at New York Jets, 1 p.m., CBS

    Los Angeles Chargers at Buffalo Bills, 1 p.m., CBS

    Carolina Panthers at Atlanta Falcons, 1 p.m., Fox

    Minnesota Vikings at Green Bay Packers, 1 p.m., Fox

    Cleveland Browns at New Orleans Saints, 1 p.m., Fox

    Philadelphia Eagles at Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 1 p.m., Fox

    Detroit Lions at San Francisco 49ers, 4:05 p.m., Fox

    Arizona Cardinals at Los Angeles Rams, 4:05 p.m., Fox

    New England Patriots at Jacksonville Jaguars, 4:25 p.m., CBS

    Oakland Raiders at Denver Broncos, 4:25 p.m., CBS

    New York Giants at Dallas Cowboys, 8:20 p.m., NBC

    Monday

    Seattle Seahawks at Chicago Bears, 8:15 p.m., ESPN


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    Doug Lesmerises and Bill Landis on the biggest comebacks on the Buckeyes roster. Watch video

    COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Last season at this time, Ohio State's starting guards on the offensive line were Michael Jordan and Branden Bowen.

    Then Bowen broke his leg last October and was lost for the 2017 season. He's now had three surgeries on his left leg, the last one last week.

    Jordan, a two-year starter at guard, was forced to move to center this season to the Buckeyes could fill a hole there?

    The result? Two new starting guards for 2018 on an offensive line that must protect Dwayne Haskins on Saturday against TCU and blow open some holes for J.K. Dobbins and Mike Weber.

    In this latest edition of BuckWhys, our quick hit, minute-long video series on Ohio State, Bill Landis and I talk about the Buckeyes on the offensive line who have undergone major turnarounds in their careers. Ohio State would be in trouble without them.


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