PLAYER OF THE DAY

Josh Bell (MLB) is a 26-year-old slugger for the Pittsburgh Pirates who’s smashing his way into the record books. In the second inning of Wednesday’s loss to Colorado, Bell crushed one off starter Jon Gray that went approximately 454 feet, right into Pittsburgh’s Allegheny River. Here’s the thing: it’s the second time this month he’s smashed a home run into the river. No player has ever done that. Only five balls have ever reached the river, and two came off Bell’s bat. How’s that for power?!

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

Juwan Howard Returns Home
Good for him…but what’s that mean?
(NCAA) Nine days after John Beilein’s stunning decision to leave Michigan basketball to coach the NBA’s Cleveland Cavaliers, the Wolverines found their new man…and he’s pretty familiar to any Michigan basketball fan.

Howard, a key member of the team’s “Fab Five” basketball team from the early 1990s, agreed Wednesday to become the head coach at Michigan, just six years after retiring from the NBA. Howard had spent that time as an assistant coach for the Miami Heat, and two of his former bosses heaped praise for his hire on his way out the door.

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The Price of Winning
What’ll it cost ya, St. Thomas?
(NCAA) Talk about sore losers… On Wednesday, the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC) “involuntarily removed” member school St. Thomas from its football conference. Surely they did something to deserve this (cheating, paying players, breaking the law)…right?

Nope. They won too much. That’s what the league said in a statement claiming “athletic competitive parity” as a reason for the ban, which ends spring of 2021. As you can guess, the news did not sit wellwith St. Thomas, which spends over a million dollars on football each year and has won six MIAC titles since 2010. Don’t worry, MIAC — your most relevant football team won’t be winning your league any longer!

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Gleyber Torres Goes Bird Hunting
This sounds dangerous…
(MLB) Remember about a week ago when we told you about New York Yankees slugger Gleyber Torres, who hit three home runs in one day against the Baltimore Orioles? Well, he’s back at it again, and the O’s just can’t catch a break.

Torres sent two more over the fence on Wednesday, giving him four multi-homer days on the year, the first to do so since 1955. All of them came against the Orioles, who have been victims of 10 of Torres’ 12 dingers this year. No surprise: that’s an MLB record, too. Even the Orioles’ announcer was dead inside after Torres’ 10th bomb in 11 games vs. Baltimore.

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ON THIS DAY

In 2018, NFL owners unanimously approved a new policy requiring players to stand if they are on the field for the national anthem, fining them if they do not. The decision came in response to quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s decision to kneel during the anthem in 2016, which sparked a political movement in America and plenty of NFL controversy.

Ultimately, the rule change was frozen then scrapped, in part because of the incredible controversy it generated for the league. Yet the damage was done for many players and on-lookers of the league, marking yet another milestone in the NFL’s complicated relationship with politics and social justice.


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