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

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    The Ohio State receiver had surgery on Monday.

    COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Ohio State will be without one of its top offensive players for a while.

    Junior receiver Austin Mack is out indefinitely after he had surgery on his left foot on Monday.

    "That's a big loss," Urban Meyer said Monday. "There's a chance he'll be back for the bowl game."

    Mack left Saturday's 49-20 loss to Purdue and did not return.

    The junior is No. 4 on the team in receiving with 331 yards and a touchdown on 26 catches. His only catch against the Boilermakers on Saturday went for 24 yards.

    Mack's injury means that other receivers like Binjimen Victor will have to step in and fill that void. Victor has 14 catches this season for 236 yards and three TDs.

    Victor was listed as Mack's direct backup on the latest depth chart.

    Ohio State is on a bye this week and will host Nebraska on Nov. 3.

    Austin Ward of Lettermen Row first reported the news


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    During his local radio show on Tuesday, Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger weighed in on Hue Jackson getting more involved with the Browns offense.

    CLEVELAND, Ohio -- When Browns coach Hue Jackson said he was going to get more involved in the offense next to offensive coordinator Todd Haley, word quickly spread beyond Cleveland.

    Haley's former quarterback, Ben Roethlisberger, weighed in during his weekly radio show on Tuesday in Pittsburgh.

    "I can't imagine Coach Todd was too happy with all that talk," Roethlisberger said. "I don't know what he's going to say to Coach Jackson or the players, things like that.

    "Coach Jackson's right. It's his team. He has the right to do what he chooses and how he wants to call plays or who calls the plays. That's up to them to work it out. I'm sure those two have had at least a talk or two behind closed doors."

    You can listen to the comments starting at 6:25.

    Jackson's comments come after the Browns' 26-23 overtime loss to the Buccaneers on Sunday. In the loss, the Browns' offense did not score in the first half. The team only has three first-half touchdowns.

    The Browns are in Pittsburgh on Sunday to face the Steelers.


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    Ever since the arrival of my Sling Shot, a nifty little device developed by weightlifting legend Mark Bell, I've been benching heavier and more often than ever before. Watch video

    CLEVELAND, Ohio -- There are times in life when a slingshot makes all the difference.

    Two scenarios, in fact, come to mind right away: When you're slaying giants, a la King David, and when you're bench pressing.

    The latter is where we're focusing. Sling Shot, a nifty little device developed by weightlifting legend Mark Bell ($55, markbellslingshot.com), allows a person to bench press heavier weight and more often.

    The difference it makes is significant. With the Sling Shot around my arms and chest, I'm able to lift -- as promised by ads -- a solid 10 to 15 percent more than I can without it.

    Zachary Lewis Zachary Lewis

    WHAT NEXT?
    Have a suggestion for an activity you think I should try? Send me an e-mail.

    Previously
    T3 Performance samples fitness best in 'Barbell Tapcon'

    What's more, that's without strain. Because it lightens the load on the shoulders, particularly the front deltoid, the Sling Shot also lowers the risk of pain and injury.

    It's a wonder someone didn't think of it sooner. So simple is the Sling Shot in design and concept, a dedicated, inventive lifter could almost make one at home.

    Essentially, it's just a wide elastic band. Arms go through loops at either end and the band connecting them stretches across the chest. In this way, when bench pressing, the Sling Shot provides a springy boost right when the bar is at its lowest.

    My width and arm size obliged me to buy an extra large. However, because I'm also relatively thin, I don't have the chest to match. (I'm working on it, trust me.)

    My solution? Padding. A sit-up pad on my chest under the Sling Shot makes me a true extra large and simulates the pectoral muscles I hope to have someday soon.

    Some of you will be impressed. Others will laugh. On my own, unassisted, my one-rep max bench press is 160 lbs. Keep in mind I have the wingspan of a bald eagle.

    Now here's what happens when I put on the Sling Shot. Instantly, that 160-lb. bar feels manageable. Not light, certainly, but doable, and repeatable.

    Better still, I can keep adding weight. With the Sling Shot, additions of five, 10, or even 15 pounds feel almost no different. The strap gets the bar out of the hole and I'm able to press it the rest of the way myself.

    There's a value to all this beyond bragging rights (of a sort) and a heightened sense of accomplishment. A lot of value, actually.

    Lifting at or near one's max builds strength and muscle more quickly, and with the Sling Shot, weightlifters can do that without flirting so closely with injury.


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    With the halftime show being a point of controversy and the quality of the performances being criticized annually, it may be better to just end the show altogether. Watch video

    Superstar artist Rihanna turned down an opportunity to perform at the Super Bowl, citing her support of Colin Kaepernick, according to US Weekly. With the halftime show being a point of controversy and the quality of the performances being criticized annually, it may be better to just end the show altogether. Still, entertainment is what brings nonsports fans to the game and the league can't risk losing that kind of revenue. What do you think?

    PERSPECTIVES

    With a history of wardrobe malfunctions, terrible performances and left-shark hijinks, the halftime show has run its course. There is no point in having something that isn't football be part of the most important football game. In recent years, it's only caused more controversy and only brought negative attention to the league. It's time for the Super Bowl halftime show to end.

    The 15 most controversial Super Bowl halftime performances of all time, ranked

    Not everyone loves football, yet everyone watches the Super Bowl. It's not because of the sport, it's because of the halftime show. Every year, the NFL's championship game is the most-watched show in the United States, but it wouldn't be that way without the people who don't watch sports tuning in for the halftime show. We all know that the NFL worships the all mighty dollar, and it won't want to leave money on the table by ending the halftime show. The Super Bowl halftime show is going to be around forever.

    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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    Indians infielder Jose Ramirez was named MLB's Fantasy MVP in DraftKings inagural postseason awards.

    CLEVELAND, Ohio - Indians infielder Jose Ramirez has been named MLB's 2018 MVP by DraftKings in its first ever postseason fantasy awards. Ramirez won the award for scoring 1,672 fantasy points over the course of 157 games.

    DraftKings determined Ramirez to be the MVP by this point system: three points for a single, five for a double, eight for a triple, 10 for a homer, two for an RBI, two for a run, two for a walk, two five a hit by pitch and five for a stolen base.

    Ramirez checked a lot of boxes last season when he hit .270 with 156 hits, 38 doubles, four triples, 39 homers, 105 RBI, 110 runs, 106 walks, eight hit by pitch and 34 stolen bases. He became just the third player in franchise history to go 30-30 in the same season - 30 or more homers and 30 or more stolen bases.

    It was a season of extremes for Ramirez. He was the AL's All-Star third baseman for the second straight year and went into the break hitting .302 (108-for-358) with 26 doubles, 29 homers, 70 RBI and a 1.029 OPS.

    Ramirez hit .223 (49-for-220) 13 doubles, 10 homers and 36 RBI in the second half. He poor second half culminated in a season-ending 24-for-145 slump. The Indians were swept in the ALDS by Houston as Ramirez went 0-for-11.

    In the AL, Ramirez finished second in walks, second in intentional walks (15), third in times on base (270), third in stolen bases, tied for fourth in homers and fourth in slugging (.552), OPS (.939), RBI and runs.

    Over the last two years, he leads the big leagues in extra base hits with 172. Teammate Francisco Lindor is fourth with 163.

    DraftKings will present seven postseason awards: MVP, Top Arm, Rookie of the Year, Best Single Game Pitcher, Best Single Game Hitter, Best Value Play and an All-Fantasy Team.


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    Jackson is coaching now like he did his first two seasons. Don't fire him for that. But also don't let him mess with the rookie QB.

    CLEVELAND, Ohio -- What, exactly, is surprising you about Hue Jackson this season?

    Is it the Browns losing winnable games? Is it Jackson attempting to assert authority and instead sounding once again like he's blaming others? Is it a frustrating sideline demeanor that leaves Jackson looking like someone just observing the game instead of the guy running the team?

    We've seen all that before. 

    I'm assuming there's no way Jackson is back in 2019, so I'm debating only the value of firing him mid-season. If the Haslams fire Jackson during this season, they're admitting they made a mistake in bringing him back after 1-31. Their reasons now would have been their reasons then. His performance now mirrors his performance then, just the numbers have changed.

    A year ago, the Browns should have been a three- or four-win team that Jackson coached into a zero-win team.

    Now, they're a three- or four-win team that Jackson has coached into a two-win team, with the second-toughest remaining schedule ahead.

    There's one caveat. If you think Jackson is harming Baker Mayfield, you let him go.

    This is a step-up season for the Browns but not a playoff season. Blowing a couple games won't set the franchise back. Messing with the mind and future of the franchise quarterback could.

    In his first two seasons, Jackson always brushed off questions about whether his quarterback yo-yoing might hurt Cody Kessler and DeShone Kizer. 

    You don't brush off what Jackson could do to Mayfield.

    Already, Jackson helped turn Mayfield into meme as the quarterback expressed shock at Tampa Bay's game-winning field goal Sunday.

    If Jackson and offensive coordinator Todd Haley are in conflict over the offense, that leaves Mayfield caught in the middle. 

    When Mayfield takes a helmet-to-helmet hit that the officials decide isn't a penalty, is Jackson the guy you want standing up on behalf of the franchise QB? Jackson was ticked Sunday and Monday, but TV showed him having a reasonable conversation with the officials after the play. That wasn't a time to be reasonable.

    Jake Burns pointed out Tuesday that the Browns are asking a lot of Mayfield as a rookie.

    Blame Haley if you'd like. But it all starts and ends with Jackson.

    For three years, he hasn't done anything to help the Browns in the present. So don't fire him now for that. 

    But you can't let him hurt Mayfield's future. If you sense that, make a change.


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    ESPN's Adam Schefter first reported that the Saints traded for former Ohio State cornerback Eli Apple, giving them six former Buckeyes.

    COLUMBUS, Ohio -- The New Orleans Saints already have a roster featuring plenty of former Ohio State stars.

    Tuesday, they added another when they traded for former Giants cornerback Eli Apple, as first reported by ESPN's Adam Schefter. He is the sixth former Buckeye on the Saints' roster.

    Apple was the No. 10 pick of the Giants in the 2016 NFL Draft. But his time in New York had some drama and difficulties. Towards the end of last season, safety Landon Collins called him "a cancer."

    But Apple is out of New York and around some faces that will be familiar to him. He joins safeties Vonn Bell and Kurt Coleman, receivers Ted Ginn Jr. and Michael Thomas, and cornerback Marshon Lattimore as former Buckeyes on the Saints.


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    Check here for the tee times, TV schedule for the WGC-HSBC Champions 2018 this week.

    CLEVELAND, Ohio -- Brooks Koekpa, Justin Rose and Tommy Fleetwood comprise one of the notable groupings for the HSBC Champions 2018 this week in Shanghai. Another high-powered grouping is Francesco Molinari, Dustin Johnson and Rory McIlroy.

    Koepka won The CJ Cup @ Nine Bridges last week in South Korea to become No. 1 in the Official World Golf Ranking. Rose is defending champion.

    INTERNATIONAL FEDERATION OF PGA TOURS
    WORLD GOLF CHAMPIONSHIPS-HSBC CHAMPIONS
    Site: Shanghai.
    Course: Sheshan International GC. Yardage: 7,261. Par: 72.
    Purse: $10 million. Winner's share: $1.8 million.
    Television: Wednesday-Thursday, 10 p.m. to 4 a.m. (Golf Channel); Friday-Saturday, 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. (Golf Channel).
    Defending champion: Justin Rose.
    Last WGC: Justin Thomas won the Bridgestone Invitational.
    Notes: The Americans go for a sweep of the World Golf Championships following victories by Phil Mickelson (Mexico), Bubba Watson (Match Play) and Justin Thomas (Firestone). None of the three is playing in Shanghai. ... Only 19 Americans are in the field. Two of them, John Catlin and Julian Suri, are not PGA Tour members. ... Dustin Johnson last year tied a PGA Tour record by losing a six-shot lead in the final round. Justin Rose won from eight shots behind. ... Patrick Reed, Brooks Koepka and Francesco Molinari give the HSBC Champions all four major champions. ... Koepka makes his debut at No. 1 in the world. Of the previous 22 players to reach No. 1, only six won in their debut atop the ranking. The most recent was Dustin Johnson in Mexico in 2017. ... Rose and Johnson each will have a chance to replay Koepka at No. 1. ... Molinari leads the Race to Dubai over Tommy Fleetwood. Both are in the field this week. ... Patrick Reed plays for the first time since the Ryder Cup.
    Next WGC: Mexico Championship on Feb. 21-24.
    Online: www.pgatour.com

    (Fact box from Associated Press.)


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    They didn't need to see it. They already know the root of the defensive issues, once again claiming that familiar 29th spot in NBA defensive rating. Watch video

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio -- The Cleveland Cavaliers scrapped their team-wide film session after an embarrassing loss to the Atlanta Hawks in the home opener.

    They didn't need to see it. They already know the root of the defensive issues, once again claiming that familiar 29th spot in NBA defensive rating. 

    Instead, they went over numerous different things and talked through potential changes ahead of Wednesday's game, turning over every stone in hopes of fixing the defense. 

    The problem starts with, but isn't necessarily limited to, communication breakdowns -- in transition and on switches.

    "I think the biggest thing is communication," head coach Tyronn Lue said on Tuesday. "When you're switching you have to call the switches out so the man can't get behind and get dunks and layups and easy shots."

    The Cavs have a motto on defense: ELC. That stands for early, loud and continuous. They reference it every day.

    "By nature we have some guys that are quiet guys, they need to speak up, speak louder and call out the coverages," Lue said.

    For his part, Lue has been much more vocal this season. He's constantly off his cushy bench seat, barking out instructions. Assistant coach Mike Longabardi is doing the same. 

    "He fights for us and he's screaming out there on the bench because he cares so much," Kevin Love said in defense of Longabardi. "We need to lock in to what he wants to get done and what the rest of the coaching staff wants to get done on the floor.

    "I think attention to detail is key right now."

    LeBron James, the team's on-court mouthpiece for the last four years, the one whose voice boomed the loudest on the defensive end, is no longer here. No one has stepped into that role. No one can. So instead of looking for just one person to shoulder that responsibility, Lue is demanding a collective effort.

    If it doesn't happen, the coach won't hesitate to pull them off the floor.

    "Either got to talk or they've got to come and sit down," he said.

    Following Sunday's loss, Thompson said players know what to do. At least, they should. The Cavs have been working on this switch-everything scheme since the beginning of training camp. They've been drilled repeatedly on handling crossmatches in the halfcourt and in transition. 

    If they don't comprehend what's going on, then they can't be timid. According to Thompson, it's better to ask questions then go on the floor and "get your ass whupped."

    Thompson also said the Cavs couldn't unleash their blitzing defense -- sending multiple defenders to slow down Hawks rookie Trae Young -- as much as they wanted on Sunday because they "didn't learn blitz package yet."

    Rookie Collin Sexton said players need to "stop complaining and just talk it out and communicate."

    Love stopped short of calling the new coverage scheme "complex."

    Defense is clearly the team's primary concern heading into Wednesday matchup against the Brooklyn Nets, another chance to get their first win. 

    In past years, the Cavs typically switched 1-4 while blitzing with the 5-man. So, technically, this new plan to switch 1-5 is new -- mimicking the hip new trend in the NBA that's had mixed results. 

    "I mean, we're doing things that we don't normally do," Love said. "Maybe complex is a strong word for that, but just a lack of communication and our coverages just aren't there."

    The word choice is irrelevant. Fixing the problem is much more important.

    Through three games, the Cavs rank 28th out of 30 teams in points allowed (126.7). They are 26th in opponent's field goal percentage (49.5), 29th in opponent's 3-point percentage (43.8), 23rd in points in the paint (54.7) and 29th in defensive rating, allowing 121.4 points per 100 possessions.

    Their pick-and-roll defense ranks dead last, allowing 1.29 points per possession.

    "We have to simplify things," Love said. "We have to have our one or two coverages and stick to those out of the gate and kind of bring everybody along with what we're trying to do. We have seen defenses in the past in the four years I've been here where we have made things a little bit too complicated for ourselves so we went back to our basic coverages and then built it out from there. I think that's what you're going to see us doing here.

    "But I think more than anything just having our brother's backs, helping each other on second and third efforts and if we do that we're going to be a lot better off."

    Before he walked over to his post-practice media gathering, Lue could be heard saying, "Look at Thibs' defense."

    Lue was referring to Minnesota head coach Tom Thibodeau, who is known as a defensive mastermind. While his Timberwolves are having their own defensive issues, ranking 21st in defensive rating, the results don't match Cleveland's struggles in the first three games, especially during Sunday's game against the hapless Hawks.

    The Cavs gave up a season-high 133 points. According to NBA.com's player tracking stats, they allowed 64 uncontested shots, 30 more than ones that were contested. The Hawks reached double figures in fastbreak points, the third straight team to hit that mark. Young picked Cleveland apart, becoming the second rookie since Stephen Curry in 2010 to finish with at least 35 points and 10 assists in a game.

    "Defense is a ways behind," Love said.

    For all of the Cavs' problems, including an apparent lack of communication -- both in the halfcourt and in transition -- that has led to three straight losses to begin this new season, Lue remains even-keeled.

    "No, I'm not discouraged," he said.


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    The OSU coach addressed how he's dealing with issues after the Purdue loss.

    COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Off weeks are a busy time for recruiting and Ohio State assistants hit the road Monday to deal with future Buckeyes. But not all of them.

    Urban Meyer kept the coordinators in Columbus to work on the problems with this Ohio State team. 

    "Not to take away from recruiting, but obviously there are some things that have to get corrected," Meyer said Tuesday.

    Meyer didn't specify if he meant offensive coordinators Ryan Day and Kevin Wilson and defensive coordinators Greg Schiano and Alex Grinch or if maybe he just kept Day and Schiano back. Either way, to take anything away from recruiting shows Meyer is serious.

    All the quotes you'll read from Meyer right now are from the regular Tuesday Big Ten coaches call, when each of the league's 14 coaches get an eight-minute session with reporters calling in from everywhere. It is by nature rushed and disjointed, so there's little depth to anything you'll read here. 

    But Meyer did not meet with reporters Monday, as he does during game weeks. That's the usual plan for him, to not meet during a bye week. He also is not expected to meet with reporters on Wednesday.

    So to hear from the boss of the 7-1 Buckeyes, this is it for now. Meyer on Tuesday sounded like a man who knows his team has a lot of problems, and he doesn't have a lot of answers yet. He also doesn't want to reveal what they're thinking during the process.

    But Meyer did claim two 12-hour sessions with coaches Monday. 

    One was on how to get the run game working with Dwayne Haskins, who is not a run threat, at quarterback. 

    "That is something that's a focus for the next two weeks," Meyer said. "That has to happen. Take advantage of our backs, and our backs have got to run through some tackles a little more aggressively. And that's something that has to happen."

    The other was on stopping big plays on defense, and the Buckeyes got to talk about scheme and strategy in a way the can't during a typical game week, when it's all about practice and getting ready for the next opponent.

    "We're having those conversations and working through that," Meyer said. "You can't really have any scheme conversations during the season. So this gives us a chance to evaluate and if we want to work on things work on that this week and next week."

    One of those scheme areas on defense is having the linebackers play so close to line. Purdue coach Jeff Brohm, during his turn on the call, said the Boilermakers thought they could work the middle of the field because the OSU linebackers play so far up.

    "We are looking into that," Meyer said.

    Will anything drastically change, in any area?

    "That has not been determined yet," Meyer said. "We'll practice things and we'll know more."

    Meyer also addressed a report about friction between Meyer and athletic director Gene Smith.

    "There's no tension there," Meyer said. "I work with Gene on a darn near daily basis and there's no tension there."

    As for the idea of any tension within the coaching staff, Meyer made it sound like there should be some after a 29-point loss when the head coach is questioning what they're doing wrong in some areas.

    "There's things that need to be fixed," Meyer said. "I wouldn't call it tension. I would call it day to day going to work and working on your weaknesses and getting them fixed. So there's no tension. It's urgency, I'd call it."


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    Ohio State's head coach was on indefinite leave in August while the Buckeyes prepared for this season.

    COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Urban Meyer's three-game suspension never was going to ruin Ohio State's season. 

    The greatest effect of Meyer's mishandling of former receivers coach Zach Smith already was in effect before Ohio State handed down Meyer's suspension on Aug. 22 and before the Buckeyes played their first game on Sept. 1. It was this question from Twitter that got me thinking about the head coach and this disjointed, unfamiliar OSU offense.

    As the Buckeyes underwent a fundamental offensive shift, as the Buckeyes started a new season without the seniors of 2017, Meyer wasn't there. His indefinite leave while Ohio State commissioned an investigation into the Smith issue kept Meyer out for the entire month of camp.

    The Buckeyes were fine preparing without him. But maybe Meyer wasn't as prepared as usual when it came to having a full knowledge of his team's strengths, weaknesses and personality.

    He knew what that meant in the moment. Asked about the suspension at his return news conference before week four, Meyer said, "I think even as hard as that is not being able to be there at training camp. That's when you build your team and that's why I stay in a hotel with them. It's very difficult."

    Now eight weeks into this season, Meyer doesn't have a firm handle on this team and especially this offense.

    "We're never had this issue," Meyer said about the run game and red zone problems after the 49-20 loss at Purdue. "We've got to get some run game."

    Teams throwing from the shotgun without a running quarterback still manage to run. Ohio State has not managed that. A shift from the typical Meyer offense was smart and required, but it wasn't Meyer that oversaw its instillation. Now, he can't believe what he's seeing.

    "It's not that easy," Meyer said. "We're going to work real hard to get it fixed."

    Meyer confidently embraced the idea that this open week gives Ohio State enough time to fix this. Maybe this week will be Meyer's version of camp. He'll get more of a handle on this team, this offense and this run game.

    The leave put him behind. So far, he hasn't caught up on what he missed.

    Buckeye Take is a quick 300- to 400-word column on a single aspect of Ohio State football. We're trying to replicate in written form the feel of our Buckeye Talk Podcast where we drop a multitude of opinions every week. We know not all of you listen to the pod (though you should), and we don't want you to miss out on what we're thinking about the Buckeyes. 

     


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    Check here for tee times for the PGA Tour's Sanderson Farms Championship 2018 this week in Mississippi.

    CLEVELAND, Ohio -- Silver Lake native Ryan Armour, a product of Walsh Jesuit and Ohio State, is defending his title at the PGA Tour's Sanderson Farms Championship 2018 this week in Mississippi. Last year's victory was Armour's first on the PGA Tour.

    Among others in the field: Chris Kirk, Bill Haas, Harold Varner III, Patrick Rodgers and Lucas Glover.

    PGA TOUR
    SANDERSON FARMS CHAMPIONSHIP
    Site: Jackson, Miss.
    Course: Country Club of Jackson. Yardage: 7,421. Par: 72.
    Purse: $4.4 million. Winner's share: $792,000.
    Television: Thursday-Sunday, 2:30-5:30 p.m. (Golf Channel).
    Defending champion: Ryan Armour.
    FedExCup leader: Marc Leishman.
    Last week: Brooks Koepka won the CJ Cup in South Korea.
    Notes: The winner gets a spot at Kapalua and the PGA Championship, but not the Masters. ... Armour last year had the best world ranking of any winner in Mississippi since it moved to the fall. He was at No. 321. ... Bill Haas in 2010 is the last player to be ranked inside the top 100 when he won the tournament. ... The tournament began in 1986. Paul Azinger and Nick Faldo were runner-up each of the first two years. ... Norman Xiong is playing on a sponsor exemption. He has yet to make the cut in six starts on the PGA Tour and one on the European Tour. ... Retief Goosen is making his first start since he was selected for the World Golf Hall of Fame.
    Next week: Shriners Hospitals for Children Open.
    Online: www.pgatour.com
    (Fact box for Associated Press.)


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    Former major league infielder Chris Sabo will be introduced as the next head baseball coach for the Akron Zips Wednesday afternoon.

    CLEVELAND, Ohio - The Akron Zips have announced Chris Sabo will be introduced Wednesday afternoon at InfoCision Stadium as the next head coach of the revitalized Akron baseball program that will resume play in 2020.

    Baseball was dropped by the University of Akron in 2015 for budget reasons, but will return as a non-scholarship program. Sabo is a former 10-year major league infielder with the Cincinnati Reds, Baltimore Orioles, Chicago White Sox and St. Louis Cardinals.

    The press conference introducing him will be streamed live at 3 p.m. on GoZips.com.

    Akron athletic director Larry Williams said in a release, "We are excited to welcome Chris Sabo to the University of Akron. His illustrious playing career demonstrates his mastery of the fine details of the game.

    "He also has extraordinary leadership skills and the proven ability to teach, coach, and motivate young athletes. His work ethic, drive, and commitment to excellence made him the perfect fit to lead the Zips' baseball program."

    Akron's release noted Sabo, 56, has spent the last four years as the manager at IMG Academy in Florida. His team, which was nationally ranked No. 2 in 2015, was ranked No. 5 last spring.  Ten of his IMG players were drafted into Major League Baseball.

    Sabo played baseball at the University of Michigan from 1981 to 1983.  The Wolverines finished third at the 1983 College World Series, where Sabo earned first-team All-America honors from The Sporting News and Baseball America.

    He was a second round draft pick by the Cincinnati Reds in 1983, and was named the 1988 National League Rookie of the Year.  A three-time National League All-Star (1988, 1990, 1991), he appeared in the 1990 World Series championship.

    Sabo led the Reds in home runs, hitting .563 during the series.  He holds the World Series record for nine assists by a third baseman in a game.  He also holds the National League record for 11 assists by a third baseman in a game.

    Sabo achieved a career-high batting average (.301) with 26 home runs, 88 RBI, and 175 hits in 153 games in 1991.

    He earned a bachelor's degree in liberal arts from Xavier University in 1998.  He also attended law school at Northern Kentucky University from 2009-10.

    A native of Detroit, Sabo and his wife, Susan, have three daughters, Annie, Brooke, and Olivia. He is an avid golfer and is heavily involved in community service-fundraising events.

    AKRON BASEBALL HISTORY

    •  Akron baseball began in 1873 as Buchtel College from 1873 to 1913.
    •  The Zips' first head coach was John Heisman in 1894.
    •  Akron baseball played in the Ohio Valley Conference from 1981 to 1987.
    • The Zips played in the Mid-Continent Conference [MCC] from 1990 to 1993.
    • Akron's only conference title came in 1991 in the Mid-Con Conference championship.
    • Akron baseball joined the Mid-American Conference [MAC] in 1994.
    • Akron baseball was discontinued after the 2015 season.
    • Chris Sabo becomes the 17th head coach of Akron baseball since 1894.


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    Chubb learned a lot from Hyde, but must now take the reins. Watch video

    CLEVELAND, Ohio --  News travels fast these days, and Browns rookie running back Nick Chubb found out from one of his Georgia coaches that Carlos Hyde had been traded.

    "(He) texted me. 'Looks like your time's up. You're going to get some more carries,'" Chubb said Monday. "I kind of just shook it off. I thought he was just saying my time would eventually come and I paid no attention to it. Then my phone started blowing up with texts and social media.

    "I looked into it and saw he was traded. I didn't believe it. I got a call from Duke Johnson. We were surprised. We just talked it out. We didn't understand why or what happened. It was a shock to everyone."

    Signed as a free agent in the offseason, Hyde was the Browns' workhorse back before being shipped to the Jaguars for a fifth-round pick in 2019. Chubb was immediately installed as the starter. 

    "I know for me, personally, I was enjoying playing with him and learning from him, and he taught me so much in just the time we were here,'' said Chubb, who gained 80 yards on 18 carries in Sunday's 26-23 overtime loss to the Bucs. "But it is what it is. Gotta keep moving forward."

    He said Hyde taught him "how to be a professional, take care of your body, watch extra film. He taught me some things in pass protection, running the ball and knowing exactly what you're looking at instead of just running the ball like I did when I was younger. He taught me a lot in a short time, and I was looking forward to learning more from him."

    Jackson says 'no doubt' he has support of Haslams, Dorsey

    Chubb, the Browns' second-round pick, scored a fourth-quarter touchdown Sunday and was later stopped on third and goal from the 2. On next play, he tried to push Baker Mayfield over the line, to no avail.

    Chubb appreciates the vote of confidence, but said a lot more went into the trade then just him.

    "(It's) a belief in not only me, but the offensive line does a great job making it easier for the running back,'' he said. "I still have a veteran guy in Duke Johnson helping me out, and it's a lot of support from everyone on this team, so I'm just happy to be here and be playing from the Cleveland Browns.''

    Head coach Hue Jackson said trading Hyde was an organizational decision, but admitted it wasn't easy two days before the game.

    "The way it came down -- what Jacksonville's needs were, what they were willing to do for us, our roster, the players that we had at the position -- you know how some of these things go,'' Jackson said. "It's either take it or leave it. We felt very good about the situation that we were in so we made the decision. I do not think that there was anything wrong with that."

    He said he talked to the players about it Saturday morning.

    "I told them what I knew the situation was and why it happened. They understood," he said. "For some guys, that is a brother. That is a brotherhood in that locker room. You lose one who is a huge member. For a second there, you can make it about that. I think our players handled it the right way.

    "After we discussed it and talked about it, then we moved forward."

    He said the Hyde trade wasn't simply an effort to get Chubb the ball more.

    "I know that's the way that it looks,'' he said. "If you take one player from the equation, the next guy's going to get more carries. "That's natural. Was it the easiest way to do it? I think that there are all kinds of ways to do it, but the bottom line, it wasn't done.''

    He said Chubb played well against the Bucs.

    "Ran hard, ran strong and did some really good things yesterday,'' he said.

    He'll face a stiff challenge Sunday in Pittsburgh, where the Steelers are 11th in the NFL in run defense, allowing only 98.7 yards per game.


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    Jordan Whitehead will likely be fined for the hit, a source said.

    CLEVELAND, Ohio -- Baker Mayfield's helmet-to-helmet hit by Tampa Bay safety Jordan Whitehead should have been a penalty and is under review for possible discipline, a source told cleveland.com.

    The hit, which occurred during Sunday's 26-23 overtime loss to the Bucs, has been sent to NFL Vice President of Policy and Rules Administration Jon Runyon for possible discipline.

    Whitehead will likely be fined, and that will be the acknowledgement that the hit was illegal. As of now, the NFL is declining comment. Whitehead could've been penalized for unnecessary roughness for hitting a player who had initiated his slide, or for unsportsmanlike conduct for the helmet to helmet hit.

    If he's is docked for impermissible use of the helmet, the minimum will be $26,739. This season, most fines are being announced on Saturday.

    Whitehead earholed Mayfield with his helmet after a 35-yard scramble for a first down to the Bucs' 41 in the fourth quarter with the Browns trailing 23-16. He popped up and got in Whitehead's face. The official threw a flag, but then picked it up.

    Head referee Shawn Hochuli announced over the loudspeaker after the flag was picked up, "the quarterback is still a runner and therefore is allowed to be hit in the head. He had not yet begun his slide. There is no foul.''

    If the flag hadn't been picked up, the Browns would've had the ball at the Bucs' 26 instead of the 41. The drive ended with Mayfield being stopped on a fourth-down sneak from the 1.

    Hue Jackson argued the call, and Mayfield and his teammates were miffed about it after the game.

    "There's a lot of stuff being put on protecting the quarterback,'' said Mayfield. "It doesn't seem like the Browns are getting a lot of calls. They can review and they can say I was a runner, but I started my slide. It's helmet-to-helmet contact. I felt it. But I got up and let the guy know he's going to have to hit me a lot harder than that if he wants to affect me."

    Browns receiver Jarvis Landry, who helped make up for the bad call by laying out for a 16-yard TD catch that tied it at 23 with 2:28 left in the game, was as mad about it as anyone.

    "Tom Brady gets that call,'' he said. "Aaron Rodgers gets that call. Any other quarterback gets that call. It's tough to beat a team and feel like you're playing against another team as well (the officials). It's a problem. It's really a problem.''
    Landry added, "All quarterbacks turn into a runner but when they slide, they get their protection back. I don't understand the difference, and he hit them in the head. He hit him in the head.''

    He lamented that Browns defensive end Emmanuel Ogbah was flagged 15 yards for roughing on Jameis Winston for what seemed like a lesser offense.

    "All he did was jump,'' said Landry. "He didn't even touch him in the head. It makes no sense.''

    He added, "We're the most penalized team in the NFL. Every week it's 12-15 penalties. Nobody listens. It's not to attack the referees, but somebody should be taking a look at this stuff. We get apologies, but it's game-changing plays. People's jobs, lives are at stake. I don't understand why it's not a bigger issue.''


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    Andrew Benintendi, J.D. Martinez and the Boston Red Sox came out swinging in the World Series opener

    BOSTON (AP) -- The Fenway Funhouse proved too tricky, too cold and just too much for the beach boys.

    Andrew Benintendi, J.D. Martinez and the Boston Red Sox came out swinging in the World Series opener, seizing every advantage in their quirky ballpark to beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 8-4 on a chilly, windy Tuesday night.

    Benintendi had four hits, Martinez drove in two early runs and pinch-hitter Eduardo Nunez golfed a three-run homer to seal it. The 108-win Red Sox got a solid effort from their bullpen after an expected duel between aces Chris Sale and Clayton Kershaw never developed.

    From the get-go, Fenway Park caused all sorts of problems for the Dodgers.

    Mookie Betts led off for the Red Sox with a popup that twisted first baseman David Freese as he tried to navigate the tight foul space near the stands. Lost, he overran the ball and it dropped behind him.

    Given a second chance, Betts lined a single that set up a two-run first inning.

    In the seventh, left fielder Joc Pederson looked hesitant as he chased Benintendi's soft fly, rushing toward the seats that jut out down the line. The ball ticked off his glove for a double, and soon Nunez connected to break open a 5-4 game.

    The crowd and cold temperatures were no picnic for the Dodgers, either.

    The oddly angled ballpark became an echo chamber even before the first pitch. Chants of "Beat LA!" began early, Kershaw got heckled with a sing-song serenade and Dodgers villain Manny Machado heard loud boos all evening.

    Only one person wearing Dodger blue drew a cheer: Manager Dave Roberts, saluted in pregame introductions for the daring steal that turned the tide in Boston's 2004 playoff comeback against the Yankees.

    It was 53 degrees for the first pitch, the coldest game for Los Angeles this year and quite a contrast from last year's World Series, when it was a record 103 degrees for the opener at Dodger Stadium.

    Game 2 is Wednesday night, when it's supposed to be even colder. David Price, fresh from beating Houston in the ALCS clincher, starts against Hyun-Jin Ryu.

    Machado drove in three runs for the Dodgers, and his RBI grounder in the fifth inning made it 3-all.

    Boston retook the lead in the bottom half when Xander Bogaerts hustled to beat out a potential inning-ending double play -- Dodgers reliever Ryan Madson seemed to celebrate a little too early.

    Rafael Devers followed with an RBI single, giving himself an early birthday present. He turned 22 at midnight, three minutes before the game ended.

    Martinez led the majors with 130 RBIs, and gave the crowd a scare when his foot slipped rounding second base on a run-scoring double in the third. He fell hard, but soon got up.

    A day before this opener, Kershaw and most of the Dodgers pooh-poohed the prospect that Fenway would cause them problems. Most of them had never played at the oldest park in the majors, built in 1912, but said they were sure they'd be OK.

    It didn't quite turn out that way in their first trip to Fenway since 2010.

    Besides, clubs coming to Beantown have other things to worry about.

    "I think the biggest challenge for a team coming in here is you're playing the Boston Red Sox," pitcher Nathan Eovaldi said Monday.

    The only other time the Dodgers and Red Sox met in the World Series in 1916, Babe Ruth helped pitch Boston to the championship. Those games were at Braves Field, the bigger home park of the city's National League franchise.

    Kershaw and Sale each started out wearing short sleeves, but neither warmed to the possibility of the marquee matchup. In similar outings, both were pulled before getting an out in the fifth.

    Kershaw took the loss in his first appearance at Fenway, tagged for five runs on seven hits and three walks. The three-time NL Cy Young Award winner fell to 9-9 in the postseason, his October results often falling short of his brilliant regular-season resume.

    Matt Barnes, the first of six Boston relievers, got the win. They combined to hold the Dodgers to one run on three hits in five innings.

    Boston manager Alex Cora won in his first try guiding a club in the Series. This also marked the first World Series game between teams led by minority managers.

    LUCKY CHARMS

    Both teams had omens on their side.

    Three gorgeous rainbows appeared over Fenway before the game, much like a colorful arc that came ahead of Boston's winning effort in the 2013 World Series.

    The stadium organist played "The Impossible Dream" in a nod to Red Sox great Carl Yastrzemski. The 79-year-old Yaz bounced his ceremonial first pitch, asked for another try and did fine.

    Magic Johnson was in the park, too. The former Lakers star, who heard plenty of "Beat LA!" chants at Boston Garden, is a part-time owner of the Dodgers and visited Fenway for the first time.

    Plus this: On this date in 1945, Dodgers executive Branch Rickey announced the signing of Jackie Robinson.

    UP NEXT

    Price had been 0-9 in 11 postseason starts before pitching six scoreless innings to help close out the Astros in Game 5. Ryu was 1-1 with a 3.40 ERA in three playoff starts this year.

    By Ben Walker, Associated Press


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    Urban Meyer has been as untrue to his coaching philosophy on the field at Ohio State as he was faithful to his pattern of questionable off-the-field discipline.

    CLEVELAND, Ohio - In the ruins of the Purdue game, it is clear Ohio State coach Urban Meyer has been as false to his principles on the field as he has been true to his shabby practices off it.

    In the Zach Smith domestic abuse scandal, Meyer subordinated to a strategy of deny, defy and lie the Ohio State meeting room signs - "TREAT WOMEN WITH RESPECT" in capitals and "What does it profit a man if he gains the world and loses his soul?"  

    The cover-up of the Smith scandal was of a piece with his practice at Florida, where Gators stars got passes for infractions that could've forced police to serialize their rap sheets.

    Meyer was suspended by Ohio State for the first three games this season. The punishment would have been more severe at a school in which the head football coach is not spared most accountability, or at one less committed to winning at great, if not quite all, cost.

    Buckeyes were overrated

    It's clear now that Ohio State's two best victories weren't all that they seemed. TCU  isn't that good. Penn State blew it on the worst call since Pete Carroll didn't run it at the goal line in the Super Bowl.

    Incredibly, since his return Meyer has been closer to doing nothing to improve the Buckeyes' chances on the field after doing almost everything off it to keep Smith.

    Remember Woody?

    Offensive balance? 

    Quarterback and presumed answer to every problem Dwayne Haskins threw 73 passes at Purdue while running backs J.K. Dobbins and Mike Weber combined for only 69 yards.

    Meyer always said there is a place for power in football, and that his offense was a synthesis of spread formation spacing and smash-mouth Woody Hayes ball.

    After the Purdue game, Woody, wherever he is, is probably stomping on his Block O cap in fury.

    A laugh line?

    The offensive line isn't even holding its own, except in penalties. This might be a result of so much pass blocking, which is designed to protect territory - the pocket - and not acquire it by driving defenders backward.

    Hayes thought running the ball imposed physical dominance. Passing, in Woody's Darwinian view, wasn't survival of the fittest. It was the easy way out.

    Beating teams with big plays didn't break their will the way beating them on long, grinding drives did.

    The allure of the big play

    When OSU won the national championship in 2014, third-string quarterback Cardale Jones' arm got a lot of the credit. But Zeke Elliott ran wild for 200 yards and more in all three postseason games.

    This Ohio State line isn't that one. Shotgun snaps that alternately dribble along the ground or float lazily to Haskins from center Michael Jordan ruin the timing of plays.

    Ohio State's dead zone

    Meyer has no short yardage offense with Haskins, which makes indefensible the neglect of Tate Martell in the red zone. He's a quarterback whose running ability must be respected. 

    In 2015, Meyer briefly used J.T. Barrett in the red zone for just that reason and Jones elsewhere. Why not the same with Martell and Haskins?

    Meyer is now using a variant of the Joe Tiller-inspired "Basketball on Grass" passing game that transformed Purdue 20 years ago.

    Meyer used to be scornful of the system, threatening to fire any aide who so much as mentioned "basketball on grass."

    "Hoist with his own petard," as Shakespeare said when things went ka-boom.

    Bill Livingston is a retired Plain Dealer sports columnist. He writes occasional columns for The Plain Dealer and cleveland.com.


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    Doug Lesmerises is joined by guest co-host Seth Shaner to discuss what Ohio State's coach should do and will do after the Purdue loss.

    COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Once Urban Meyer figures out what's needed to fix the Ohio State Buckeyes, will the three-time national championship coach be willing to make the necessary changes?

    On this mid-week episode of the Buckeye Talk Podcast from cleveland.com, the fallout from the 49-20 loss at Purdue is still in the air as Doug Lesmerises is joined by guest co-host Seth Shaner from a quaint library conference room.

    Doug and Seth took a bunch of your questions, including one on what things would look like if Joe Burrow was the Ohio State quarterback. And what would Jim Tressel have done if he had Dwayne Haskins as his quarterback?

    There are a lot of changes that fans would like to see made after the team's first loss, and Doug and Shane took on most of them. The Buckeyes don't play this weekend, so they have some time to adjust.

    Thanks again for listening to Buckeye Talk. You can subscribe at any of these places:

    Buckeye Talk on iTunes

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    Thank as always to ShopOhioState.com and MinuteManTickets.com for supporting Buckeye Talk.


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    Cleveland Browns need better play execution, not better plays. They need to cut way back on mistakes leading to penalties, drops and sacks

    CLEVELAND, Ohio -- After the Cleveland Browns lost their second overtime game of the season to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to go 2-4-1, coach Hue Jackson said he thought that the play calling could be better and that he would do whatever was necessary to improve the situation including getting more involved himself.

    If that sounds like Jackson meant he would take over play-calling duties from offensive coordinator Todd Haley, Jackson said on Monday that would not be the case. Instead, he will offer to help more with getting the offense going.

    Play calling is an art and some definitely do it better than others, but at the NFL level they're all pretty good, and sometimes even the good ones can leave you scratching your head with a call.

    With the Browns, it isn't so much the play called as it is the execution of that play. You can have the best play in the world called and it won't work if there is a penalty, a dropped ball, a fumble or a sack, as there often is with the Browns. Those mistakes are all due to lack of discipline, and discipline is the responsibility of the head coach.

    Crowquill, by Plain Dealer artist Ted Crow, appears three times a week in The Plain Dealer and on cleveland.com.


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    The Cleveland Cavaliers (0-3) look for their first win of the season, as they host the Brooklyn Nets (1-2) on Wednesday night.

    CLEVELAND, Ohio -- The Cleveland Cavaliers (0-3) look for their first win of the season, as they host the Brooklyn Nets (1-2) on Wednesday night. 

    When: 7 p.m.

    Where: Quicken Loans Arena

    TV: FoxSports Ohio 

    Radio: WTAM 1100 AM; WMMS 100.7 FM, La Mega 87.7 FM.

    Online: FoxSports Go apps

    Last meeting: The Cavaliers beat the Nets 121-114 on March 25, 2018. It was the capper of a five-game winning streak at the time. 

    Cavs minute: The Cavs have lost three straight games to open the season. Their average margin of defeat is 14 points, which is the worst mark in the NBA. ... The Cavs are trying to avoid their first 0-4 start since the 2003-04 season. That year the Cavs actually lost five consecutive games before notching their first victory. ... Cleveland has won 10 straight home games against the Nets, outscoring them by an average of 12.8 points (111.2-98.4) during that stretch. ... Wednesday marks the first of four meetings against Brooklyn this season. ... Cleveland has had at least five players score in double-digits in all three games this season, including six players with 10 points or more in each of the last two. ... Kevin Love ranks third in the NBA in rebounding, averaging 14.7 per game. He spearheads a Cavaliers group that has outrebounded each opponent to date. ... Since January 2016, Love has notched a double-double in nine straight games versus Brooklyn. ... Jordan Clarkson ranks fourth in the NBA in bench scoring, averaging 17.7 points. ... JR Smith (1,917 3-pointers made) is two triples away from passing Dirk Nowitzki for 11th all-time in NBA history.  

    Nets minute: Former Cavalier Joe Harris, playing in his third season with the Nets, is the team's third-leading scorer, averaging 14.3 points. ... Shabazz Napier (right hamstring strain) and Treveon Graham (left hamstring strain) are expected to be out. ... Brooklyn is averaging 106.3 points, which is sixth-worst in the NBA. ... Center Jarrett Allen has recorded two double-doubles in his first three games. At 20 years old, he is the youngest player in Nets history to register a double-double in the first two games of a season. ... Brooklyn is seventh in the league in points in the paint per game (51.3). ... Caris LeVert is averaging 24.7 points, 4.7 rebounds and 4.0 assists. He's led or tied for the team lead in scoring in all three contests and has posted two of the three highest scoring games of his career.

    Probable starters:

    Cavs

    F Cedi Osman

    F Kevin Love

    C Tristan Thompson

    G Rodney Hood

    G George Hill

    Nets

    F Joe Harris

    F Jared Dudley

    C Jarrett Allen

    G Caris LeVert

    G D'Angelo Russell


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