Roger Goodell, NFL Execs Reportedly Angry with Patriots' Post-Super Bowl Antics – Bleacher Report


NFL commissioner Roger Goodell hands the Lombardi Trophy to New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft after defeating the Atlanta Falcons during Super Bowl 51 at NRG Stadium on February 5, 2017 in Houston, Texas.
The Patriots defeated the Falcons 34-28 after overtime.  / AFP / Timothy A. CLARY        (Photo credit should read TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP/Getty Images)

TIMOTHY A. CLARY/Getty Images

Alec NathanFeatured ColumnistFebruary 11, 2017

New England Patriots defensive coordinator Matt Patricia wore a T-shirt depicting Roger Goodell as a clown following his team’s 34-28 Super Bowl 51 triumph over the Atlanta Falcons?at Houston’s NRG Stadium, and the NFL commissioner reportedly wasn’t thrilled with the clothing choice. ?

“The T-shirt really bothered him,” an ownership source told CBSSports.com’s Jason La Canfora. “The fact that [Patriots owner Robert] Kraft didn’t stop him from wearing that ticked some people off, but did they really think he’s going to protect Goodell after all of this?”

NBC Boston’s Nick Emmons relayed a photo of Patricia donning the shirt that drew Goodell’s ire:?

The Patriots’ displeasure with Goodell stems from the Deflategate scandal, which resulted in quarterback Tom Brady’s four-game suspension at the start of the 2016 season.?

Those feelings of animosity appeared to translate to the postgame podium at the Super Bowl when Kraft seemed to reference Brady’s league-imposed punishment.?

“Two years ago, we won our fourth Super Bowl down in Arizona, and I told our fans that was the sweetest one of all,” he said, per Pro Football Talk’s?Josh Alper. “But a lot has transpired over the last two years, and I don’t think that needs any explanation. I want to say to our fans, brilliant coaching staff and players who are so spectacular, this is unequivocally the sweetest.”

Brady also got in on the act at the Patriots parade, when he “rode in a duck boat that was draped in a T-shirt sporting the words, ‘Roger that,’ along with a picture of five rings,” according to the?Boston Globe‘s?Jaclyn Reiss.?

Looking ahead, it doesn’t appear as though there’s an end in sight to New England’s feud with the league office.?

According to La Canfora, Kraft has a “particular ire for league counsel Jeff Pash” that “has by no means subsided” after he played a prominent role in the league’s investigation.?

“Robert still wants Pash out,” an ownership source told La Canfora. “The only way there will ever be a full reconnect between the Patriots and Goodell is if Pash was no longer there.”



Should Venus and Serena Williams' Parents Be in the Tennis Hall of Fame? – Bleacher Report


Oracene Price and Richard Williams watch at the 1998 U.S. Open.

Oracene Price and Richard Williams watch at the 1998 U.S. Open.Associated Press

Merlisa Lawrence CorbettFeatured ColumnistFebruary 11, 2017

Tom Brady and Bill Belichick, Don Shula and Dan Marino, Phil Jackson and Michael Jordan, Joe Torre and Derek Jeter. Those are among the greatest player-coach combinations in sports history. In all of those cases, the players and coaches are either in or headed for a Hall of Fame.

Venus and Serena Williams are destined for the International Tennis Hall of Fame. Should their primary coaches, their parents, Richard Williams and Oracene Price, be headed to the Hall of Fame, too??

It’s hard to argue against the impact Richard and Oracene have had in their daughters’ lives and on tennis. Without any formal training in the sport, the two developed, trained and coached two of the greatest players in the history of the game.

Serena and Venus have won a combined (singles, doubles and mixed doubles) 60 Grand Slam titles and eight Olympic gold medals.?

Plenty of parents have played a role in their child’s tennis career. But what Richard and Oracene have accomplished goes far beyond parental influence. They created a masterplan to take their girls from Compton, California, to an international stage on which they would transform women’s tennis.?

They did this in the face of scrutiny, doubt and sometimes downright hostility.

Richard’s pronouncements of his daughters’ pending dominance are now legendary. They foreshadowed what has become one of the greatest stories in sports history. But are these accomplishments Hall of Fame worthy??

Anyone can nominate someone for the Hall of Fame, via an online application. However, nominees go?through a committee that evaluates nominations to select those who get placed on ballots.?

Venus Williams puts her arm around her sister Serena before the start of their match at the 2017 Australian Open.

Venus Williams puts her arm around her sister Serena before the start of their match at the 2017 Australian Open.WILLIAM WEST/Getty Images

There’s currently a Change.org petition to get the two inducted.?

Richard and Oracene would qualify under the “contributor”?designation.?The tennis Hall of Fame puts forth the following?criteria?to be considered for induction under contributor:?“Exceptional contributions that have furthered the growth, reputation, and character of the sport, in categories such as administration, media, coaching, and officiating.”

It’s hard to view what Richard and Oracene accomplished as anything less than exceptional. But how do they measure up to those already in the Hall of Fame for contributions??

Ion Tiriac, former player and coach of Boris Becker, was inducted as contributor. Although a solid pro, Tiriac would not have made it into the Hall of Fame on his playing credentials alone. It was his contributions as coach, mentor and tournament promoter that got him in.?

Robert Johnson, mentor and coach of several African American players, including Hall of Famers Arthur Ashe Jr. and Althea Gibson, was inducted?as a contributor. Johnson’s contributions covered decades of commitment?to the development of young black players.?

The rest are a mixed bag of tournament officials and journalists, including Bud Collins.?

Although Richard and Oracene have devoted time to training and mentoring players besides their daughters, Serena and Venus have been their primary contribution.?

Is that enough??

According to tennis analyst?LZ Granderson, it should be.?

“So when the International Tennis Hall of Fame finally opens its doors to the Williams family, my hope is that they make room for three. No coach in the past 20 years has had as big of an impact on the game than Richard,” wrote Granderson for ESPN’s?Undefeated.??

In 2013, the?New York Times?included Richard among great coaching legends like women’s college basketball’s Pat Summit and the NFL’s Vince Lombardi.

In that article, Julie Bosman wrote:?“He is self-taught in his chosen sport. He guided two athletes from obscurity to total domination.?Who has had more sheer influence as a coach than Richard Williams, father of Serena and Venus?”?

Richard Williams coaches a young Serena.

Richard Williams coaches a young Serena.Paul Harris/Getty Images

If Richard and Oracene were not parents and just two tennis lovers who developed a plan to take two girls of limited means and coached and trained them into two of the best players in the history of the game, they would be slam dunks for induction.?

New York Times columnist William C. Rhoden once wrote: “[Richard] Williams is more of a training guru, a scout who recognizes talent. Price, as she did with her daughters, could prepare talented young women emotionally for the rigors of world-class tennis.”

When his daughters were still small, Richard came up with a 78-page plan to develop them into champions. In March 1997, before Venus or Serena won a Grand Slam, Richard told New York Times?magazine contributing writer Pat Jordan: “I don’t know anyone who’s done what Venus did. She should go right to the Hall of Fame. She’s going to be there anyway, so why waste time?”

Being the parent of one’s pupils shouldn’t diminish the success born of their tutelage. What Richard and Oracene achieved?is unique, unprecedented and exceptional, precisely?the criteria reserved for Hall of Famers.?

Richard and Oracene deserve to be in the tennis Hall of Fame.?



'Great addition' – Larry Porter joins Auburn as assistant football coach – Auburn Tigers Official Athletic Site


Larry Porter joins Auburn’s staff after three seasons at North Carolina.


Feb. 11, 2017

By Jeff Shearer
AuburnTigers.com

AUBURN, Ala. – A relentless recruiter and proven player developer with head coaching and SEC experience, Larry Porter joins Auburn?s staff as tight ends/H-backs coach and recruiting coordinator, Auburn coach Gus Malzahn said Saturday.

“I want to thank Coach Malzahn for giving me and my family the opportunity to be a part of the Auburn family,? Porter said. ?He has assembled a great staff and has all of the pieces to pursue a championship. Auburn has a great football tradition and I can’t wait to get started. War Eagle!”

Porter comes to Auburn from North Carolina, where he coached running backs and coordinated special teams for the past three seasons.

?Larry is a true professional and will be a great addition to our staff,? Malzahn said. ?He is an outstanding coach with a very good history of player development and is one of the top recruiters in the country.?

Before UNC, Porter coached running backs at Texas and Arizona State. From 2010-11, he was the head coach at Memphis, his alma mater.

Porter earned the head coaching opportunity after excelling on Les Miles? staff at LSU for five seasons from 2005-09.

At LSU, Porter twice earned National Recruiter of the Year honors by Rivals.com, in 2007 and 2009. In 2006, he was promoted to assistant head coach. LSU won the national championship in 2007.

Porter coached 1,000-yard rushers at Arkansas State, Oklahoma State, LSU and North Carolina. In 2015, UNC?s Elijah Hood ran for 1,463 yards and 17 touchdowns.

A four-year letterman at Memphis, Porter rushed for 2,194 career yards and served as co-captain as a senior in 1993.

After coaching high school football in Memphis, Porter moved to college football in 1998, coaching running backs at Tennessee Martin. The 2017 season will be Porter?s 20th coaching college football.



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Auburn running backs coach Tim Horton will now also handle the Tigers? special teams.

?I?m excited to have Tim serve as our special teams coordinator,? Malzahn said. ?He has assisted with that unit the last four years and will do an outstanding job.?

Jeff Shearer is a Senior Writer at AuburnTigers.com. Follow him on Twitter: Follow @jeff_shearer



Hamilton will offer boys volleyball and gymnastics – Northwest Now


Beginning?in the fall of 2017, Hamilton will offer boys volleyball and gymnastics. The measure was approved by Hamilton’s Board of Education at the Feb. 7?meeting.

For the first two years, boys volleyball will consist of a freshman and a junior varsity team.

“Obviously our community is changing demographically,” Hamilton athletic director Mike Gosz said. “There’s been a ton of interest in boys volleyball for the past five or six years in the lower levels. We’re starting to see that interest in the high school level as well. There’s a Junior Chargers volleyball program for boys that started up about three to four years ago.”

Currently, 44 boys in grades fifth through eighth participate in the Junior Chargers Boys Volleyball Program.

According to the district, the high school will cover team expenses, which are expected to be $12,500 the first year and $10,000 each year thereafter. Equipment used by the girls? team will be shared. First-year expenses will include the cost of uniforms. Other ongoing costs for the program will include hiring two coaches and fees for travel, officiating and tournaments. The teams will not participate in the WIAA tournament series until the school fields a varsity team in 2019.

“To be competitive with other communities?in terms of offerings is something we explored,” Gosz said. “One of the things you have to look at is Title IX, offering a boys sports and a girls sport.”

Hamilton girls will have the chance to join the tri-op gymnastics team with Germantown and Menomonee Falls for the 2017-18 season. Like the girls and boys hockey programs, student participants will bear the cost of the program, which will include practice time at a private gymnastic club until 2019 when Germantown?s new field house will be built. According to the district, four or five Hamilton girls are expected to participate in the winter sport.



Gene Haas says Haas F1 Team could move up 'a position or two' in 2017 – Autoweek


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A year ago, Gene Haas saw something many thought wouldn?t happen.? He watched as his Haas F1 Team made its debut in the FIA Formula 1 World Championship.

It was the first time an American F1 team had taken to the track in 30 years. It also came only a few years after a failed bid from US F1, headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina, like Haas.

Unlike US F1 however, Haas had 15 years of professional racing experience in NASCAR?s Cup series racking up two Cup titles and 36 wins along the way.

Still, there were plenty of critics.

The Haas F1 Team quickly silenced them by scoring points in the first race of the season, the Australian Grand Prix. Haas driver Romain Grosjean finished sixth and the new team left the first race of the season fifth in the constructor standings.? It had been 14 years since an F1 team scored points in their debut that coming in 2002 when Mika Salo finished sixth for Toyota at the Australian Grand Prix.

Grosjean followed his sixth place debut with a fifth in the next race the Bahrain Grand Prix.? Earning consecutive point-paying finishes, something that had not been done since Shadow Racing — another American team — debuted in 1973.

Haas, with Grosjean behind the wheel, would go on to score an eighth-place finish in the fourth race of year — the Russian Grand Prix — and the team would finish its first season eighth in the final constructors’ standings. Grosjean will return with the team for 2017, while Kevin Magnussen replaces Esteban Guti?rrez.
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Romain Grosjean

Haas F1 Team driver Romain Grosjean finished sixth in the team’s 2016 race debut. Photo by Haas F1


In the off-season the American team has had little time to celebrate its inaugural season.? The team has been furiously working on its 2017 entries, new cars that have to meet much different regulations than last season.

Haas is ready for his team’s second F1 season using lessons learned from his own successful machine tool business, his time in NASCAR and his first successful season in Formula 1. This week he talked about his first F1 season, and his expectations for 2017.

Looking back on your first season in Formula 1, how would you assess it?

?I think it was a very successful entrance into Formula 1. We accomplished all of our major goals and, actually, surpassed what we expected at the beginning of the season.?

Was your first year in Formula 1 similar to your first year in NASCAR, or were they two totally different experiences?

?Well, our first year in NASCAR was a really arduous task. We always ran at the back and we did it for like six years straight and we never had much luck. We started in NASCAR in 2002 and the competition for drivers and crew chiefs was intense and we just struggled.?

Were there lessons learned from your NASCAR endeavor that were applied to Haas F1 Team?s inaugural season?

?Yes. Everything we learned that we did wrong in NASCAR we avoided in Formula 1, and the most important thing was immediately seeing what works and what doesn?t work. We learned that the hard way in NASCAR, so when we went to Formula 1 our focus was not so much on how we did things, but who we did things with.?

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Kevin Magnussen

Kevin Magnussen replaces Esteban Guti?rrez at Haas F1 for 2017. Photo by Haas F1


Was your inaugural Formula 1 season what you expected, or were there things that surprised you?

?I was a little bit surprised at the initial points scoring. In Melbourne we were sixth — almost unheard of in Formula 1 that in your first race out you would score that high.?

What was your proudest moment?

?I certainly think Melbourne, because it was our inaugural race and actually scoring points was a record-breaking event. Melbourne certainly stands out above any other race during the whole season just because we scored points.?

Was there ever a moment when you thought, ?What have I gotten myself into??

?There?s no doubt about that because when we first started in Formula 1, the whole idea was that we were going to make everything ourselves. We were going to be the traditional constructor where we were going to make our own chassis, suspension, components and aero. But it was a massive undertaking, so we reversed course a bit and said, ?Ok, who could we partner with?,? because this is such a monumental task there?s no way that we can accomplish this in the eight or nine months we had to do it. So we had a complete change in strategy. That?s when we ended up partnering with Ferrari.?

How do you think Haas F1 Team was perceived before the start of the year and what do you think its perception is today?

?There was a huge amount of skepticism at first. I think a lot of people certainly thought we?d run in the back the entire season. We did have a lot of support from NBC Sports and all the guys on the broadcast. I think by the end of the season we silenced the critics and, by now, most people see us as a serious competitor.?

Beyond the sporting challenge of Formula 1, there was a business case for your company, Haas Automation, to become involved in Formula 1. You said you wanted Haas Automation to become a premium, global brand via Formula 1. While brands aren?t built overnight, do you feel that growing Haas Automation globally is on track thanks to Haas F1 Team?

?Being a Formula 1 participant brings a level of credibility that you just won?t get through traditional advertising. People are kind of ?show me? people, like show me what you can do and then I?ll believe in you. It translates well into building machine tools where if we can race cars, we can build machine tools. That was the initial concept — to convince people of our ability to do things that others can?t, and I think that translates into being a machine tool builder. People see what we can do in Formula One, and people believe Haas Automation can build world-class machine tools.?

It was a massive undertaking to prepare for your first year, but with a new car and a new set of regulations, is 2017 going to be just as challenging?

?I think it has pluses and minuses. On the plus side, we?re not trying to put the whole pit crew together. We don?t have to worry about getting trucks and other infrastructure. We have all that in place. The negative side is that there?s less time to do all these things again and there are a lot of rule changes, so you have to be prepared. On the other hand, we have stronger relationships with a lot of our suppliers, so that should make it easier. It?s kind of give and take. It?ll be just as challenging as it was last year, but I think with the knowledge we have, we should actually perform a little bit better this year.?

What would you like to achieve in 2017?

?If we can do a little bit better because our business model in Formula 1 allows us to operate more efficiently, we might be able to move up a position or two.?

You proved that standing still isn?t something you do when you made a driver change for 2017, as Kevin Magnussen joins the team to partner with Romain Grosjean. What is it that you like about Magnussen?

?Well, Magnussen was actually one of our original candidates. We talked to Magnussen and thoroughly went through his racing resume and we were very impressed. Near the end of the season, we asked Kevin if he might be available and he said he was. On the second to last race weekend of the season, we made our decision and brought him to Haas F1 Team.?

You grew up in Youngstown, Ohio, attended college in southern California and started Haas Automation out of your garage. Haas Automation is now the largest machine tool builder in North America, your NASCAR team has won two championships and you built the first American Formula 1 team in 30 years. Looking back, are you able to appreciate the scope of your achievements or are you constantly looking forward?

?I don?t look back too much on it. The machine tool industry is a very tough business, and racing is a tough businesses too. Only the people who get to the top are ever remembered, and it?s a business of attrition just like the machine tool business. Racing is tough and machine tools are tough, but both have started a lot of other business, like Windshear, our full-size, rolling-road wind tunnel in North Carolina. I find that in machine tools and in racing it seems that the most successful attribute you can have is just stubbornness and the will to not give up. Going racing and working with machine tools is how I started, so the two have always gone hand-in-hand. It?s really the only thing I know that well. I?ve been successful at it even though it?s an incredibly competitive environment.?

When did the racing bug bite, and when did you meld your passion for racing with machine tools?

?I was in high school when I went to work for LeGrand Race Cars. One of my starting jobs there was machining magnesium wheel for race cars. I was 16 years old when (Red) LeGrand said, ?Here?s this lathe over here. I?ll show you how to make some wheels.? So he showed me and gave me a couple of tips and I?d say a month later I was sitting there machining wheels out of magnesium by myself. I could set the machines up and run the machines, so I was the magnesium machine guy there and that?s what I did. It doesn?t take long until you get involved with the racers there. The highest form of racing at that time was Formula 5000. I actually went to the Long Beach Grand Prix in 1975 followed by the Formula One Grand Prix in 1976, which went on for almost 10 years. I saw some of that high-profile racing right after college.?















'Magnus' gives an inside view on the chess world – Danbury News Times


A new documentary about the Norwegian world chess champion Magnus Carlsen was a hit at a recent screening in Danbury.

?Magnus? traces the quick rise of Magnus Carlsen from a child chess prodigy to his world championship victory in 2013 at the age of 22. Carlsen has held onto that title in subsequent contests.

?I don?t know anything about chess, but I found it incredibly fascinating,? Penelope Forman, of Ridgfield, said of director Benjamin Ree?s personal approach, which includes lots of family videos showing Magnus in the years before he became an international celebrity.


The screening drew about 30 people, including the chess coach at Danbury High School, Gary Budzinski, who said he met Carlsen at the world championship match in New York City last November.

When I asked Budzinski how Carlsen compares with American chess legend Bobby Fisher, he said, ?That?s a really tough question. Fisher was the greatest player of all time, but you?re talking about the years from 1970 to 1972. Their styles of play are very different and I don?t think you can compare champions from different eras. You?d have to have Fisher at his peak play Carlsen at his peak. … I don?t think there is any doubt that Magnus will be in the top 10 of all time.?

Nine-year-old Andre Lladri, of Danbury, came to the movie with his mother, Christina, who said her son was just starting to get into the game. She thinks the concentration and strategy involved in chess will help him in his other classes. Andre said that so far he is having lots of fun playing chess.

Although ?Magnus? shows how the chess prodigy was shunned by his classmates when he was a schoolboy, it also makes it clear that his father and mother and two sisters were a great support system.

?He had so much love from them,? one woman in the audience said in the discussion after the documentary. ?You can see that in the home movies of him playing chess as a boy.?

One of the audience members raised a question that resulted in some lively discussion: Why aren?t there women chess champions?

In all of the movie?s matches we never see a woman competing. An audience member speculated that it?s a matter of the different spatial senses of men and women, but others felt it might simply be a matter of parents and schools not encouraging girls to get into a game so dominated by men.

Budzinski said the game is more popular in the United States than sports like golf and tennis, with recent studies showing 35 million regular chess players, as opposed to 24 million golfers and 17 million people who play tennis.

Chess develops memory, concentration, focus and logical thinking, Budzinski pointed out.

?I think it can help you become a better mathematician,? he said of the way it sharpens the minds of the high school students he coaches.

jmeyers@hearstmediact.com; Twitter: @joesview