SANFORD, Fla. – Orlando City Soccer Club’s Adrian Heath awoke this morning to the start of his 37th preseason as both a player and coach as his expansion Lions opened camp for their inaugural Major League Soccer campaign.
With plenty of work to get down during a crucial acclimation process for close to 30 players who are coming together for the first time, Heath is taking an optimistic approach toward the uncertainly that hangs over the start of the MLS season.
While the excitement surrounding the club has been rampant throughout Central Florida, there’s fear that a delay to the start of the 2015 season is a real possibility.
Congrats goes out to the Arizona Rattlers for wrapping up an ArenaBowl three-peat on Saturday while simultaneously crushing the hearts of 18,404 rabid, title-hungry sports fans in Cleveland. In the first ArenaBowl I ever paid attention to (while at a laundromat in 2002, of all places) the Rattlers were badly beaten 52-14 by the rival San Jose SaberCats.
On Saturday, Arizona ravaged the Gladiators to the tune of 72-32 to claim their third ArenaBowl title in a row. It’s the fourth consecutive appearance in the ArenaBowl for the Rattlers since the AFL relaunched in 2010.
It’s partially why I’m pleading for someone (anyone!) to please save the Arena Football League.
Never mind the constant chatter alleging the abuse of the paltry salary structure by teams with kickbacks to players, or that an owner once told me he’d fix games so home teams won every time if he could. Forget about all of that, I’m just concerned with two particular tweaks that would help make the league feel a little more legit again.
The best part of last night’s ESPYs award show on ESPN came in the final moments when long-time anchor Stuart Scott accepted an award named in honor of former basketball coach Jim Valvano, who lost his battle with cancer in 1993.
Scott has been fighting the same battle over the past seven years. During a touching and inspiring speech last night he shared the most recent struggle he’s had with the disease over the previous week and what’s inspired him to continue pushing forward. It was a beautiful and seemingly deliberate soliloquy, one delivered in front of a national audience that will forever be the go-to clip of Scott long after he’s gone.
It mystifies me that with all the medical developments our world has made over the decades, that cancer continues to kick our ass the way it does. Here’s hoping the fight will one day be won.
If you’ve ever wondered what’s become of former Major League Baseball shortstop Rafael Furcal I’ve got some news to pass along to you.
I spent the past weekend in Jacksonville covering the U.S. Men’s National Team for Major League Soccer, where I wrote a number of stories over the course of Friday and Saturday. But I did other things while I was there as well, such as attending a Jacksonville Suns baseball game before walking across the street to EverBank Field for the soccer match.
Below are the links to all eight soccer stories about the USMNT from the weekend. The first story created quite a bit of buzz among soccer fans and media members alike, which makes interest in a Furcal comeback pale mightily in comparison. But while I was at the park…
That brief moment of excitement I feel each year when preparing to watch the NFL Draft doesn’t linger for too long. I’m usually ready to channel surf or dip in and out of the room by the eighth pick. But this year I realized it’s all in the way you approach it.
I spent much of the draft last night in a recliner with a laptop, smartphone and remote control nearby. First thing I realized was that ESPN has been ruining this event for me for years. It wasn’t until I committed to the NFL Network’s broadcast that I no longer had the urge to throw my television through a wall due to the rabid jaw-flapping.
Then I got caught up in the information overload world of Twitter and Facebook, reading and responding to online posts about fan’s draft triumphs and despair, with plenty of doses of humor thrown in at each other’s expense.
It’s not quite on par with the football team’s eight championship game appearances over the past nine seasons, but the Wisconsin-Whitewater men’s basketball squad is off to a good start.
The Warhawks won the Divison III national title last month when Quardell Young scored on a layup and drained a free throw with less than a second to play to finish off a 75-73 win over Williams in Salem, Virginia.
It’s the second championship for head coach Pat Miller and his team in three years.