John Wood volleyball signs two local products – WGEM


With the college volleyball season just months away in the fall the John Wood women’s volleyball team is beginning to come together piece by piece for its inaugural  season.

First year head coach Madeleine Halford signed two to her squad on Tuesday and Halford shopped local, too.

Former Quincy High volleyball player Olivia Wort and former Quincy Home School volleyball player Anna Peters signed with the Blazers. 

 “I’m really excited because I haven’t really thought about where else I wanted to go I just started at John Wood. It’s because Ilove playing volleyball,” said Peters. 

“I came to John Wood, and I planned on coming here anyways to stay close to home. Then, the volleyball option came up and I went to an open gym and loved it. Then (Halford) offered me a spot on the team,” said Wort. 

Halford also got two commitments from current John Wood student athletes. Hunter Wiese from the women’s basketball team and Kiersten Pratt from the softball team have also committed to play volleyball as well. 


ASX releases timetable for CHESS replacement – InvestorDaily

ASX releases timetable for CHESS replacement – InvestorDaily

ASX releases timetable for CHESS replacement

The ASX has released a consultation paper about its blockchain-powered replacement for CHESS, targeting a go-live ‘Day 1’ between late 2020 and early 2021.


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The ASX has outlined 50 new business features that will be delivered via a new distributed ledger technology (DLT) solution that it announced last December will replace CHESS.

In a consultation paper titled CHESS Replacement: New Scope and Implementation Plan, the ASX also seeks feedback from industry about the timing, testing and transition arrangements for the new system that will clear trades in Australia’s equity market.

Migration and implementation plans for the ASX’s new post-trade infrastructure cover the next two-and-a-half to three years, with a ‘go-live’ estimated to be between the fourth quarter of 2020 and the first quarter of 2021.

All dates are subject to completion of system development, stakeholder readiness and regulatory clearance, said the ASX.

“The ‘Day 1’ scope balances the desire for new functionality with the need to deliver the new system in a reasonable timeframe, recognising that further enhancements can be made post-implementation,” said a statement by the ASX.

Stakeholders have eight weeks to provide their feedback on the consultation paper, with written submission due on 22 June 2018.




ASX releases timetable for CHESS replacement

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Majority of Americans Favor Legal Sports Betting Despite Possible … – Casino.Org News

The majority of Americans are in favor of betting on games legally, according to a new sports betting poll by Seton Hall University’s Sharkey Institute, although most respondents also believed a regulated betting market would impact the integrity of sports events.

sports betting poll

It’s believed that billions of dollars are bet by Americans on the Super Bowl each year, dwarfing figures taken in the legal sports books of Nevada. Far from promoting corruption, legal sports books would help regulatory bodies detect suspicious betting patterns that might point to match-fixing. (Image: CNN International)

Some 55 percent of Americans said they were in favor of sports betting, while 35 percent were opposed and 10 percent did not know. The figures tally closely with a Washington Post poll conducted last year.

The new poll found that support for regulation was significantly higher among the younger generation. Some 68 percent were in favor among the 18-29 age group, which fell to just 37 percent for those aged 60 and above.

Meanwhile, 48 percent of all respondents said they thought sports betting would jeopardize the integrity of the games. Some 42 percent disagreed and 10 percent, again, didn’t know.

Sports Petting Poll Points to Unsettling Conclusion

Director of the poll Rick Gentile said the findings make for uncomfortable reading because they suggested people don’t care about integrity.

It’s outrageous when you think about it,” said Gentile, a former executive producer and senior vice president of CBS Sports. “It comes close to saying ‘We don’t care about the legitimacy of the games, what matters is being able to bet on them.’ A majority favors gambling, and by a slimmer margin think the games might be fixed as a result.”

The American Gaming Association estimates that US citizens illegally wager around $150 billion on US sports annually, while another study estimates that Americans bet about $500 billion worldwide on sports each year. These figures dwarf the $250 million in revenue generated by Nevada’s regulated sports books in 2017, which itself was an all-time record.

Regulation Will Promote Integrity

The NBA and the MLB – for decades fiercely opposed to legal sports betting – now say they would support a regulated market, but only on their terms.

The leagues are trying to convince lawmakers to impose a one percent “integrity fee” on all bets taken on their games if the market opens up, but many feel that integrity monitoring should be conducted by state regulators and that the leagues’ fee is little more than an onerous royalty charge.

Far from jeopardizing integrity, a regulated market would make match-fixing much easier to detect, as legalized sports books would be required to monitor and report suspicious betting patterns, while taking revenues away from the black market.

The US Supreme Court is expected any day now to deliver its decision on whether the Professional and Amateur Sports Protect Act (PASPA) is unconstitutional and should be repealed. The act prohibits states from legalizing and regulated sports betting within their borders, even though it is legal in Nevada and a handful of other states.

Industry observers expect the court to strike down PASPA.

KU basketball saves athletic department budget, allows leaders to dream of 'blue sky potential' – KUsports

Allen Fieldhouse is shown in this Journal-World file photo.

Allen Fieldhouse is shown in this Journal-World file photo.

Despite popular opinion, KU has a good football program. It just happens to play basketball.

No, you haven’t missed any gridiron victories. Rather, that’s just a way to note that KU’s nationally renowned basketball program performs financially like a good football program.

Knowing that fact is important to understanding how Kansas Athletics is able to remain financially competitive in the world of big-time college athletics. But perhaps more importantly, recognizing KU basketball’s financial prowess is key to understanding why KU leaders often think the sky is the limit for KU’s athletic department.

Numbers game

Men’s basketball ticket sales 2017

Kansas: $15.1 million

Kansas State: $3.01 million

Missouri: $3.03 million

Football ticket sales 2017

Kansas: $3.4 million

Kansas State: $11.8 million

Missouri: $11 million

All sports ticket sales 2017

Kansas: $18.9 million

Kansas State: $15.2 million

Missouri: $17.9 million

In 2017, the KU men’s basketball team generated $15.1 million in ticket sales, according to reports filed with the NCAA. That’s more than the $11.8 million that K-State’s football program generated in the same year. It also is more than the $11 million that Missouri’s football team produced in the vaunted SEC.

Thus far, KU’s woes on the football field haven’t put the athletic department at a financial disadvantage. KU football in 2017 generated only $3.4 million in ticket sales — or about $8.4 million less than K-State’s football program. But K-State’s basketball program only generated $3 million in ticket sales. Add it all up — including women’s programs and the school’s smaller programs — and KU had a total of $18.9 million in ticket sales. K-State had $15.2 million in total ticket sales. Mizzou also trailed KU in total ticket sales, with $17.9 million.

KU basketball can make up for a lot.

It also can cause athletic directors to dream of what could be. It is hard to build a basketball program that ever sells $15 million in tickets. But KU has one. If it can now build just a good football program, it could have a truly elite revenue-generating athletic department. Just a good, not elite, football program because, remember, K-State has only won two conference championships in 14 years, and you would need an abacus to calculate the last time Mizzou won a conference championship in football.

Related story

A look at the finances of Kansas Athletics: Rising revenues, soaring costs, big bets

Viewed that way, KU is one of the few athletic departments positioned to make a moonshot. Sure, it still may not rival the ranks of Texas and Ohio State, but KU definitely would be living in an upscale neighborhood. KU athletic department leaders do view the possibilities as great.

“We are in a unique position,” KU Athletic Director Sheahon Zenger said. “What you have just described is incredible blue sky potential. It is exciting to think about.”

But, to state the obvious, a total of three football wins in the last three seasons doesn’t send anything into the blue sky stratosphere — other than the blood pressure of fans. Zenger, though, thinks he has the right formula in place. While he vowed not to make win-loss projections, he said the program has the key ingredient in place for success.

“You have to have continued commitment,” Zenger said. “You can’t stop and start, stop and start. Probably the thing we have right now more than ever is we have a solid commitment from central administration, athletic administration, endowment association, alumni association, all with locked arms to support that program.

“Now you need coaches and student athletes to give their best every day, work hard, and take a blue-collar approach.”

There you go: Blue collar to blue sky.

Prep wrestling: O'Connell honored for career in wrestling – The Herald-News

Joliet Central coach Pat O'Connell was recently inducted into the IWCOA hall of fame.
Joliet Central coach Pat O’Connell was recently inducted into the IWCOA hall of fame.

Of the nearly 600 inductees of the Illinois Wrestling Coaches and Officials Association Hall of Fame, the vast majority are naturally wrestlers and head coaches along with several officials.

But a group of individuals who have been critically important to the sport’s success, the assistant coaches, are represented by a much smaller group of individuals.

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That’s why longtime Joliet Central and Joliet Township coach Pat O’Connell was not only surprised, but also very grateful to learn that he would be one of 16 inductees in this year’s Hall of Fame class, which included a Steelmen wrestler whom he nominated, the late Joei Bales, as well as former Plainfield Central coach Paul Faris.

“I was definitely surprised and the group that I went in was amazing,” O’Connell said of his induction ceremony earlier this month. “I’ve worked the state tournament for 38 years, and that’s been big. And I’m assuming that getting JJC wrestling back had a lot to do with it.

“It was wonderful. I had the family there, and it was good to also have some friends there. And it was good to get Joei in at the same time and his daughters were able to accept the award. There’s quite a few from JT who are in the Hall of Fame, and I’m still trying to get in some more and sometimes it takes four or five years.”

O’Connell, who has been coaching in the sport for 41 years, realizes that volunteering at the IHSA finals as a weigh-in official since 1981 and heading a committee that helped to bring back the wrestling program at Joliet Junior College also greatly enhanced his qualifications.

Although he’s stepped down as a paid assistant at Central, he plans to continue to volunteer there. He assisted JJC coach A.J. Blahut by helping in the weight room and hopes to do more volunteer coaching with the Wolves.

“One of our selling points is that this is a hot bed,” O’Connell said of JJC. “There’s so much talent here and there were kids at JJC that I knew were good wrestlers. That was the best fit for them, but they didn’t have wrestling at the time, so we missed out on a few. They hired A.J. early and gave him time and he was able to see kids and talk to them.”

After starting his coaching career at his alma mater of Joliet East in 1979 with Sam Parker, the pair moved to Central in 1983-84, and O’Connell began his 27-year association as assistant for the Steelmen under hall of famer Mac McLaughlin. After a three-year stint as head coach, he has served as an assistant for Gardner Coughlen since then.

“That was a hoot, we had a lot of fun,” O’Connell said. “We won the dual team title in 1985 and took second in 1986 and realistically could have won it three years in a row. I got to sit in the chair when Joe Herron won state and then Mac sat with me when Trayvon [Zabala] wrestled in the finals and took second. So it was kind of neat to go back and forth like that.”

O’Connell started his wrestling career competing for hall of famer Ron Larsen. He was a four-year letterman at Millikin University and competed in cross country and track and field.

He comes from one of the famed coaching families in the Joliet area. His father, Dale, was the first basketball coach when Joliet East opened and his brothers Dale, Mike and Bill also coached, and many of his nieces and nephews are currently coaching at various levels.

In addition to his many years in the corner chair, Pat O’Connell also coached cross country, track and was head boys soccer coach to start Central’s program.

But wrestling was the sport that won O’Connell over, which isn’t surprising considering who he was fortunate to work with and the great success that it has enjoyed in the Joliet area.

“There’s always been great wrestling here,” O’Connell said. “It was amazing in the 1970s and it’s continued. The level is strong across the board and today’s kids are coming in ready due to the clubs. It’s still a great blue-collar sport where hard work pays off for the average kid. If you follow what your coaches say and learn the basics, you can go a long way.”

Certainly one of the best that O’Connell was around was Bales, a 1985 Central graduate who was a state runner-up in 1984 and an undefeated champion in 1985.

He was a four-time state qualifier and three-time sectional and regional champ who went 114-11-2 while helping the Steelmen to two state dual finals.

He continued his success at Northwestern University, where he was an All-American and also competed at the Espoir level. Bales passed away in 2008 at age 41.

“I nominated Joei a few times before they put him in and I didn’t even know all of his accomplishments until I researched it,” O’Connell said. “When I was coaching freshmen, he would show me stuff that he did and I still show kids some of that stuff to this day.”

O’Connell is getting closer to finishing his historical research of the Steelmen program, which is the area’s oldest and among the few statewide that date back to the sport’s early years.

He takes pride that his research has led to several JT wrestlers being inducted into the IWCOA Hall of Fame.

“One other thing that I’m really proud is that I discovered the 1944 state tournament that nobody knew about,” O’Connell said. “Don Govoni and Earl D’Amico always said that Dave Shapiro was a state champ in 1944, but there supposedly wasn’t a tournament that year. So I researched it and basically found all of the brackets and turned them over to the state.”

O’Connell is appreciative of the experiences that he’s enjoyed while in wrestling.

“I’ve got a special thing with wrestling, and I don’t want to say that it saved me, but I owe the rest of my life to it,” O’Connell said. “I got to go to college doing it and wrestled at Millikin for four years. So I try to get kids out for the same reason that I did it. It’s going to build you up both mentally and physically. It’s just such a great way of life.”

6 Takeaways from This Year's Jets Draft –

It was a most interesting draft for the Jets. They traded up to take a quarterback they liked in Sam Darnold third overall on Thursday, waited a while to pick again Friday, wound up taking two Division II players, and concluded a little early Saturday with three trades to come up with three Round 6 picks and add a veteran D-lineman.

What did GM Mike Maccagnan and head coach Todd Bowles think of this year’s draft process? Here are six takeaways from their end-of-draft news conference:

“We Feel Good About It”
Maccagnan felt in general the draft unfolded well for the Green & White. “Not having the two second-round picks, of course we felt good about how the trade turned out obviously,” he said. “Philosophically, we always try to address needs in pro free agency, while in the draft we focus on trying to find good value for where we pick.”

That led to exploring tradeups and tradedowns. When the draft began, the Jets had six picks. When it was over, they spent six picks but also picked up a veteran D-lineman in Henry Anderson in a trade with Indy.

So bottom line, Mac said, “We feel good about it. We feel we have some good, young players. We like them both from an ability standpoint and we feel we have some good character guys, too.”

Todd on Shepherd/Fatukasi
On the surface, third-rounder Nathan Shepherd  (6’4″, 315) and sixth-rounder Foley Fatukasi (6’4″ 318) might look to be fighting for the same spots in the DL rotation. But Bowles assures that isn’t so.

“Same size, different players,” Bowles said. “We’re going to have plans for both of ’em. They can play the same side, they can play opposite each other, they can also give Leo [Williams] a break, and they can also play at the nose. But we have them slotted for certain things with how we’re going to use them.”

Tight End Assessment
Maccagnan said fourth-round pick Chris Herndon combines “very good receiver” with “functional ability to be an effective blocker” into “a dual guy, in our minds.”

“He’s probably a little more athletic than some of the tight ends we have and probably a better pass receiver,” Mac said. “But we do like him overall. We think he’s a good young prospect.”

One small caveat: Herndon is still rehabbing a knee injury suffered late last season and might take 4-6 weeks before he can cut it loose. “But,” said Mac, “we feel very comfortable where he is in terms of his recovery process.”

Small Schools, Big Value
The Jets went to the NCAA Division II well twice, for Shepherd out of Fort Hays State and Trenton Cannon from Virginia State. Our research indicates that’s the first time since 1979 the Jets took two D-II athletes in the same draft.

“In years past, it worked out that we mostly drafted guys from bigger schools,” Mac said. “This year in particular, we found some guys we liked and the way the board unfolded, they were there when we felt we had good value for them.”

The Anderson Deal
Maccagnan was asked about the seventh-round trade for Anderson, who ended last season on IR with a fractured larynx. “He’ll have to come in and pass the physical,” the GM explained. “If he does not pass the physical, then obviously the trade will not go through.” The Jets would likely get a Colts seventh-rounder next year in compensation.

But Mac isn’t figuring the trade will go that way.

“They were changing from a 3-4 to a 4-3, and we actually like the player,” he said. “He’s 27 years old, going into the final year of his contract. But we liked him coming out of college, he’s excellent from a character standpoint. We thought it was a good opportunity to maybe add a guy. We’ll see how he plays for us.”

Endnote: Weighing the Trades
So who won the trade exchanges between the Jets and Vikings? If we go by the typical draft value chart to assess it, in the first trade, when the Jets sent No. 157 to the Vikings for 167 and 225, the Vikes got a pick worth 28.6 points and the Jets got two picks worth 26.3.

Then when the Jets sent back 167 and 225 and got 180 and 204 from Minnesota, the tally was Jets 29.2, Vikings 26.3.

The bottom line for the deals: The Jets “won” the exchange, 55.5 to 54.9. In draft trade chart terms, that 0.6 difference is about the value of a low-Round 7 pick, maybe even a free agent. In other words, the deals worked out pretty fair for both sides.