Month: September 2019

Despite RGIIIs Pleas Redskins Will Not Rush QB On

Photo by The Washington PostRobert Griffin III, perhaps the most recognizable personality in the NFL, wants to do more than 7-on-7 drills. The Washington Redskins’ second-year quarterback said he feels great after major knee surgery in January. He’s ready to go.The Redskins are not so ready for him to go.No matter how strong and stable Griffin says his knee feels, the team will not succumb to his desires. That’s what got him in this position in the first place.“We do have a plan for him,” coach Mike Shanahan said. “He may not always like that plan, but that’s my job sometimes not to be liked. My job is to do the best thing for him. That’s what I’ll do.” Shanahan added:“You always want them a little bit antsy. I don’t want to put him in there too quick for the obvious reasons, but I like what I’ve seen. He’s had no swelling. He’s making a lot of progress. We’re getting a lot of quality work done.“If he continues this with no setback, we’ll keep on giving him more freedom, a little bit more reps and hopefully get him ready. When you slow a guy down, that’s the job of a head coach to hopefully put him in a position where he’s going to be healthy and ready to play by the first game.” read more

Like It or Not ESPN Resigns the Provocative Stephen

Stephen A. Smith signed a new deal with ESPN to continue providing commentary that enrages, excites, illuminates and generates conversation. And for that, it’s a good thing he will be on sports television’s largest platform at least for a few more years.Smith is good for TV.There are a lot of talking heads on the “idiot box,” a lot of people offering bluster and shallow views or perspectives that are right down the middle, with no edge. Unmemorable.And then there is Stephen A.Love him or dislike him, he provides the kind of perspective that comes from a place of authenticity and always with his heritage in mind.What Smith shares on First Take or SportsCenter are views and arguments you might hear in the barbershop, only more sophisticated because he has access to information and sources most people, including other journalists, do not have.When he pontificates on social issues and on racial concerns, you might not agree with him, but he’s always worth a listen.“Stephen A. is one of the strongest and most distinct voices in sports commentary today, and he will continue to enliven a wide variety of ESPN television and audio offerings with his thought-provoking takes on the news of the day and topical issues where sports and culture intersect,” said John Wildhack, EVP Programming and Production at ESPN.In other words, the network needs him.Several years ago, Smith spoke to a group of young men at Morehouse College. It was interesting to watch because at breakfast before the talk, Smith never mentioned the hour-long meeting.Rather, he talked about life and family and sports and travel. And when he walked into the room on campus, the dynamics of the room changed. The young men sat up, grateful to be in Smith’s presence, and he basked in it.Smith embraced the unique experience of an HBCU as a student at Winston Salem State and was infused with the cultural pride that comes with it. Being back on a Black college campus mattered to him, and he let his bright-eyed audience know it.Speaking with no notes, he gave the students what they wanted: humor, insight, inspiration, hope. Smith recounted his road to ESPN, from the Winston Salem Journal to high-school sports reporter at the New York Daily News to covering the Philadelphia 76ers to long-defunct CNN/SI to ESPN.“I told Spike Lee I was coming to speak to you all and he told me to get on your butts,” Smith started that day. “I told him, ‘I got you.’ So I will start by saying everything I got, I earned. And trust me, it’s going to be harder for you than it was for me, and it was hard for me. You can’t expect anything to be handed to you. You’re young and Black. So, you can’t be average. You can’t be good. You have to be great.“Remember that you don’t just represent yourself. In everything you do, you’re representing your family, this prestigious college, people who love you. When you see me on TV,  you can believe I am aware that I represent my mother and family, my friends and Black people. If you don’t have that mindset, you’ll be selling yourself short.”Smith has gotten the most of his career, with more to get. The springboard to his ascension might have occurred about 18 years ago, when he covered the 76ers. Superstar guard Allen Iverson did not like something Smith wrote and they did not speak for several days. Finally, Iverson arranged to talk to Smith and they hashed out their difference because Smith had earned Iverson’s respect by not caving in to him. Smith has displayed that kind of strength ever since.You can find a Smith detractor—many of them, actually—who disagree with his opinions and take his confidence for arrogance or are just rubbed the wrong way by him. Some simply consider him offensive. Ultra-sensitive, Smith continues to learn to listen to the detractors but to not digest their hate.The reality is that Stephen A. Smith is good for TV.  There is no phony in him, no compromising, which has gotten him into some dicey situations. He is provocative, even during these times of extreme political correctness. read more

Serena Williams Voted AP Female Athlete of the Year

She showed up in Paris wearing a black catsuit, a reminder that nobody can command the Grand Slam stage quite like Serena Williams.She reached the finals at Wimbledon and the U.S. Open, proving again how well she can play no matter how little she practices.Williams didn’t win those or any other tournaments, which in every other situation might have made for a forgettable year.In 2018, it was a remarkable one.FILE – In this May 29, 2018, file photo, Serena Williams returns a shot against Krystyna Pliskova during their first-round match of the French Open tennis tournament in Paris, France. The women’s tennis tour has approved rule changes that involve seedings after a return from pregnancy. Former No. 1 players Williams and Victoria Azarenka are recent mothers on the tour. (AP Photo/Michel Euler, File)Her rapid return to tennis after a health scare following childbirth was a victory in itself, and for that, Williams was voted The Associated Press Female Athlete of the Year for the fifth time.Williams received 93 points in balloting by U.S. editors and news directors announced Wednesday, while gymnast Simone Biles was second with 68. Notre Dame basketball player Arike Ogunbowale was third, while Olympic snowboarder Chloe Kim and swimmer Katie Ledecky, the 2017 winner, rounded out the top five.All of those players won a title or titles in 2018, while Williams had to settle for just coming close a couple of times.Now 37 and a new mother facing some players who weren’t even born when she turned pro in 1995, Williams isn’t the same person who ruthlessly ran her way to 23 Grand Slam singles titles — the last of which came at the 2017 Australian Open when she was pregnant.“I’m still waiting to get to be the Serena that I was, and I don’t know if I’ll ever be that, physically, emotionally, mentally. But I’m on my way,” Williams said on the eve of the U.S. Open final. “I feel like I still have a ways to go. Once I get there, I’ll be able to play even hopefully better.”The Male Athlete of the Year will be announced Thursday.The women’s award has been won more only by Babe Didrikson Zaharias, whose six wins included one for track and five for golf.Williams’ previous times winning the AP honor, in 2002, 2009, 2013 and 2015, were because of her dominance.This one was about her perseverance.Williams developed blood clots after giving birth to daughter Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr. on Sept. 1, 2017, and four surgeries would follow. She returned to the WTA Tour in March and played in just a pair of events before the French Open, where she competed in a skin-tight, full-length black catsuit.She said the outfit — worn partly for health reasons because of the clots — made her feel like a superhero, but her game was rarely in superstar shape. She had to withdraw in Paris because of a right pectoral injury and didn’t play again until Wimbledon, where she lost to Angelique Kerber in the final.Williams came up short again in New York, where her loss to Naomi Osaka in the final will be remembered best for her outburst toward chair umpire Carlos Ramos, who had penalized Williams for receiving coaching and later penalized her an entire game for calling him a “thief” while arguing.That loss leaves her one major title shy of Margaret Court’s record as she starts play next year in a WTA Tour that will look different in part because of new rules coming about after issues involving Williams. Players returning to the tour may use a “special ranking” for up to three years from the birth of a child, and the exemption can be used for seedings at big events. Also, the tour says players can wear leggings or compression shorts at its tournaments without a skirt over them.Williams insists she is still driven to play and win as much if not more than before she was a mother. That drive is the focus of a Nike ad showing her in action.“Getting this far, crazy,” it says. “Stopping now, crazier.”Williams won’t.“I’m still on the way up,” she said. “There’s still much more that I plan on doing.”The rest of the top five:Simone Biles, gymnastics. The American won four golds and six medals overall in the world championships in Qatar, giving her 20 in her career to tie Russia’s Svetlana Khorkina for the most by a female gymnast.Arike Ogunbowale, women’s basketball. She hit one jumper to knock off previously unbeaten Connecticut in the Final Four, then a 3-pointer in the championship game to lift Notre Dame over Mississippi State.Chloe Kim, snowboarding. At 17, the Californian won the halfpipe Olympic gold medal in South Korea, where her parents were from before they immigrated to the United States.Katie Ledecky, swimming. The 21-year-old U.S. Olympian tuned up for the 2020 Games in Tokyo by winning five medals in the city at the Pan Pacific Championships. read more

SpursWarriors Is The Best DefenseOffense Clash In NBA History

1995-96✓Bulls1819Sonics17081763Bulls 1997-98✓Jazz1742Bulls17811761Bulls SEASONPLAYOFFNAMEELONAMEELOAVG. ELOWINNER The best opportunity we had to witness No. 1s face off in recent years came in 2005-06, when the Dallas Mavericks offense faced the Spurs defense 11 times. Offense prevailed in that case — Dallas won 55 percent of the time, scoring 11.4 more points per game than San Antonio usually gave up that season — but that’s an exception to the general trend since 1951.In 414 meetings over the past 65 NBA seasons,2Today’s Warriors-Spurs matchup will be the first No. 1-versus-No. 1 clash of the 2015-16 season, though it isn’t set in stone that these squads will finish the year No. 1 in their respective categories. the top-ranked defense has beat the top-ranked offense 55.3 percent of the time. In those games, 3Excluding the game in question if it’s a regular-season contest. the No. 1 defense gave up 4.1 more points than their average, but the No. 1 offense scored 5.3 fewer points than their average. Some of that is because the defensive teams have more often been better overall clubs — hello, Bill Russell-era Celtics! — but we can account for this using FiveThirtyEight’s Elo ratings, which set pregame odds based on the relative qualities of the teams. Elo would have expected the No. 1 defenses to beat the No. 1 offenses 54.9 percent of the time, so the defensive teams are winning slightly more than expected when they face their offensive doppelgängers.That’s the aggregate of matchups between No. 1s since 1951, though. What about since the mid-2000s, when the league finished a nearly decade-long project to overhaul its defensive rules and cut down on hand-checking? The trend is inconclusive: In the relatively small sample of 38 matchups since 2004-05, top offenses are winning less than Elo would predict — yet, they’re also taking more of a bite out of top-ranked defenses than those defenses are doing to them at the opposite end. Those recent rule changes certainly are having the intended effect at a leaguewide level (pace and offensive efficiency are up since the early 2000s); stay tuned to see if it translates to these kinds of strength-on-strength matchups as well.Those are all broader trends, though. What makes Monday’s Spurs-Warriors game historically unique is the sheer quality of each team’s dominant unit. Only four games in NBA history have ever seen an offense 8 points better than the league’s efficiency face a defense 8 points better than that same league standard, and all of those were between the Spurs and Mavericks during the 2003-04 season.4Somewhat under the radar, those Mavs had the best offense — relative to the league average — of all time, although this year’s Warriors might top them. This game will do those one better by pitting a plus-9 offense against a plus-9 defense, an NBA first. It’s practically unheard of for a matchup of this caliber to take place outside the NBA Finals, where both teams’ ratings are necessarily sky-high because they’ve made it through the notorious gauntlet that is the NBA playoffs. For it to happen during the regular season, you’d need two teams flirting with a 70-win pace — and that’s exactly what San Antonio and Golden State are doing this year.It’s fair to ask whether there’s also something bigger going on here: Three of the 10 best combined-Elo games in NBA history1After removing duplicate games from the same playoff series. have taken place in the last 10 months, and two in the last 32 days. Does the NBA suffer from an epic lack of parity these days? Is Elo itself miscalibrated? Those questions are beyond the scope of this post, but know that, by any metric, the Warriors’ and Spurs’ first meeting of the 2015-16 season makes for a titanic matchup.(Yes, we also know that ageless time lord Tim Duncan will be out tonight. Luckily, the Spurs are deep enough to cover for that.)Tonight’s game also poses a more specific question: What happens when historically great offensive and defensive units meet? The short answer is that the Spurs and Warriors are playing at such a high level that we don’t really have a good historical precedent.Here’s what we do know: Defense-oriented teams have a higher probability of winning the NBA title at a given level of (regular-season) performance than their offensive counterparts. This gap only widens as a defense (or correspondingly good offense) becomes more dominant. And great defenses also have a slight edge in head-to-head clashes against great offenses.In preparation for Monday’s tilt, we did some digging into historical battles between the league’s best teams on each side of the ball. It’s a phenomenon that occurred upward of a dozen times per season in the NBA’s first few decades, but it’s getting rarer and rarer in recent years because of expansion, scheduling constraints and a larger playoff field. 1996-97✓Bulls1798Jazz17521775Bulls HOME TEAMROAD TEAM 2011-12✓Thunder1731Spurs17401735Thunder 1995-96✓Magic1647Bulls18271737Bulls 2014-15Spurs1702Warriors17881745Spurs 2015-16Warriors1814Cavaliers16601737Warriors 2015-16Warriors1809Spurs17821796— Tonight, the unstoppable Golden State Warriors meet the immovable San Antonio Spurs in a showdown between the NBA’s No. 1 offense and its No. 1 defense, two units that aren’t merely at the top of the league, but rank among the best we’ve ever seen. It’s the game of the season — no, check that, it’s the loftiest NBA game ever played according to our in-house Elo ratings. 2014-15✓Warriors1802Cavaliers17121757Warriors 1996-97Bulls1792Sonics16781735Bulls Under such extreme circumstances, it’s tough to say which side of the ball has the advantage — we simply don’t have enough of a sample of comparable matchups. And our other bits of evidence from history are mixed; defenses hold a slight all-time edge, but that may have eroded with recent seasons. (Or not.) Monday’s matchup won’t serve as a referendum in either direction, but it should be a spectacular clash of styles featuring basketball at perhaps the highest level it’s ever been played. read more

Russell Westbrook Should Be Mad At Kevin Durant — Durant Stuck Him

The uphill battle that Westbrook faces now doesn’t take away from the fact that Durant will have his fair share of pressure in the months to come. While this season has been a breeze so far for him and the Warriors, who own the NBA’s best record, the noise will be deafening if Golden State stumbles even the slightest bit this postseason. And Durant, fair or not, would likely be the clear target of that criticism, since his high-profile signing was supposed to make the Warriors invincible.But for now, and until the playoffs — the Warriors and Thunder currently have about a 21 percent chance of meeting, according to FiveThirtyEight’s NBA forecast — the focus remains on Durant and Westbrook, and whether their strained, icy relationship shows any signs of thawing.Check out our latest NBA predictions. KEVIN DURANTRUSSELL WESTBROOK Who’s Going Where As The NBA Trade Deadline Approaches? Usage rate30.6%27.6%31.6%41.8% 2016-17 stats are through Feb. 8Sources: Basketball-Reference.com, Synergy Sports Technology Related: Hot Takedown 2015-16 SEASON2016-17 SEASON2015-16 SEASON2016-17 SEASON Turnovers/game3.52.34.35.4 Much like the first two times they played each other this season, cameras and storylines will follow Kevin Durant’s and Russell Westbrook’s every move on Saturday, when the ex-teammates square off in Oklahoma City for the first time since Durant signed with the Warriors last summer.For months, the running question for each player has been: When was the last time you two spoke with the other? And as they confirm that they haven’t spoken, the narrative becomes even icier with every matchup.Durant largely dismissed the tension between them as “fake drama” and a media creation. But on a basic level, Westbrook has reason to be upset with his one-time teammate. Though Durant had every right to leave, his departure has made every aspect of Westbrook’s job harder than it’s ever been, while Durant has had to do less than ever before.Westbrook, averaging a triple-double for the season, has been undeniably incredible in Durant’s absence. But a chiropractor is usually necessary when a player puts this much of his team on his back.Westbrook, in trying to make up for Durant, is on pace to log the highest usage rate (the percentage of a team’s possessions that end with a certain player while he’s on the court) in NBA history, by far. By contrast, Durant is posting the lowest usage rate of his career. Westbrook, handling the ball far more often, is turning it over more than ever. Durant has fewer turnovers than ever before. Durant has a career-low isolation rate; Westbrook is going one-on-one more than he has since 2011-12 (just 14.7 percent of his 2-pointers have been assisted this season).1All stats in this article are current through Wednesday. And Durant, part of Golden State’s more free-flowing offense, is cutting and moving without the ball more than ever before, while Oklahoma City still throws fewer passes than any team in the association.We’ve seen Westbrook change his game this way before: He put up similar per-100-possession stats in 2014-15, when Durant missed most of the season because of a fractured foot. Then, as now, Westbrook’s true-shooting and effective field-goal rates declined while he was tasked with so much more ballhandling responsibility. (The Thunder, currently in seventh place in the West, finished the 2014-15 season tied for eighth and missed the playoffs.) Russell Westbrook’s workload increased when Durant left True shooting63.4%65.0%55.4%54.2% Isolation rate14.9%11.4%12.5%19.1% read more

Mens soccer OSU looking to ride momentum against Indiana

Ohio State then-sophomore Marcus McCrary (19) dribbles the ball through a group of Michigan players during a game at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium on Nov. 4, 2015. Credit: Lantern File PhotoThe Ohio State men’s soccer team got a decisive 3-0 win over Oakland on Tuesday night, hoping to ride that momentum into Saturday’s matchup versus No. 7 Indiana at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium at 2 p.m.The key for the Buckeyes in their win over Oakland was their aggressive first-period play, something they hope to be able to replicate against the tough Hoosiers.“We have been stressing the importance of coming out strong,” senior midfielder Ben Fitzpatrick said. “Whenever we have come out with intensity in the first half we have been dominant. Indiana is going to be a tough test, but we have nothing to lose. We just have to go out and give it everything we got.”For the Buckeyes, it is the last Big Ten home game of the regular season. With OSU tied for fifth place in the conference, they still have time to make up some ground and finish with a top-four seed that would allow them to host a game in the first round of the Big Ten Tournament.“All Big Ten Conference games are huge for us,” junior defender Niall Logue said. “Especially with Indiana being a top-10 team, to win the last one at home for us would be massive.”The Hoosiers come into the game with an 8-1-4 record (2-0-3 Big Ten). In their last time out, they took down No. 4 Louisville 2-1 on the road.Indiana is led by senior midfielder Tanner Thompson and redshirt senior midfielder Richard Ballard, each tied with 13 points on the season. Thompson and Ballard have each scored four goals while tallying two assists apiece.Indiana is having a very successful season, with its only loss of the season coming in a 4-0 contest at Notre Dame. However, the Hoosiers are not a particularly dominant offense, coming into the contest with 17 goals scored on the season compared to OSU’s 16.The real discrepancy comes in the goals allowed category. Indiana has been very stingy this year, allowing only 10 goals in 13 games. The Buckeyes, meanwhile, have allowed 20 in the same amount of games played.The two schools are meeting for the 60th time, Indiana having a massive all-time series lead at 50-7-2.“The history of the matchup between these two schools doesn’t concern me,” coach John Bluem said. “This is an important game for both teams. They are trying to get into top two teams in the conference and we are trying to get into the top three or four. All conference games are pivotal and we will treat it as such.”The Buckeyes will again be fighting the injury bug on Saturday, as they will be without junior forward Marcus McCrary and leading scorer and senior forward Danny Jensen. Neither of the two played in Tuesday’s win over Oakland.OSU has a tough road ahead. After battling the Hoosiers on Saturday, the Buckeyes will travel to Louisville to take on the No. 4 Cardinals on Tuesday. The team is embracing this challenge, knowing it gives them a chance to show its true colors.“The record doesn’t reflect who we are as a team,” Fitzpatrick said. “I think we are better than that. If we can take Indiana and Louisville and get results, whether it’s a draw or a win, it’ll show the NCAA who we really are.” read more

No 1 Ohio State keeps winning streak alive with victories over No

OSU redshirt sophomore middle blocker Blake Lesson goes to serve in the set set against No. 4 Long Beach State. OSU won, 3-1. Credit: Aliyyah Jackson | Lantern reporterThe No. 1 Ohio State men’s volleyball team (9-0) inched closer to rewriting the school record books, going 2-0 this weekend against Barton College (3-3) and No. 4 Long Beach State University (7-2) on Friday and Saturday night at St. John Arena. The pair of wins tied the school record of 32 straight victories, a record that dates back 47 years. The last time the Buckeyes lost was Feb. 6, 2016 when they lost to the Ball State at home last season.Barton CollegeThe Buckeyes swept the Barton Bulldogs in three sets (25-21, 25-14, 25-17). Thirteen Buckeyes saw the court on Friday, including sophomore setter Sanil Thomas, who had his first start of the season and led in assists with 37.“My role is usually coming off the bench, coming in for a play or two,” Thomas said. “Coming out it adds a little more pressure to you, but by practices and the coaches’ confidence in you, it kind of alleviates that pressure on you as well.”After trailing 11-8, the Buckeyes went on a 5-0 run to gain the lead in the first set. Senior opposite Miles Johnson lead the team with eight kills while the team combined for five total blocks in the set.Midway through the second set, Johnson had his 123rd career service ace, one that put the Buckeyes up 14-9. With the ace, Johnson tied the school record for career aces which was set by Steve Potter from 1992 to 1995.Junior outside hitter Nicolas Szerszen ripped four straight kills and Thomas closed the second set for the Buckeyes with a service ace. OSU attacked at a rate of 52.6, committing only two attacking errors in the set.Despite having three underclassmen on the court during the third set, OSU managed to go on an 11-point run to put the Buckeyes up 17-7. One final service error from Barton’s sophomore outside hitter Vasilis Mandilaris gave the Buckeyes their final point of the match to win 25-17.Long Beach StateOn Saturday night, the Buckeyes beat the Long Beach State 49ers in four sets (25-22, 24-26, 25-21, 26-24) to tie the school consecutive wins record. OSU had complete control of the first set, leading 22-15. The Buckeyes were able to withstand a 7-2 run before they put the set away, 25-22.Johnson led the Buckeyes with eight kills in the first set, hitting at a rate of .462, while senior setter Christy Blough had 12 assists. The Buckeyes never trailed the 49ers in first set.Johnson, at the beginning of the second set, served his 124th career ace to break the school record and put the Buckeyes on top 6-4. The score remained close throughout the second set, ending in a 49ers’ win in extra points, 26-24.The loss for the Buckeyes ended its 21-set win streak. Hitting was the difference for the 49ers as they attacked at .375 rate.“[Long Beach State] definitely stepped up in the back line. They were serving pretty tough and they were actually pretty good out of system too,” Szerszen said. “In general, they’re a really good team and causes a lot trouble.”After two straight aces during OSU’s six-point run, Szerszen joined his teammate Johnson in history as he tied him in career aces at the beginning of the third set. After being down by as much as seven points, a late surge by the 49ers threatened OSU’s lead, but ultimately, the Buckeyes pulled through to win the set 25-21.Serving errors plagued the 49ers in the third as the team committed seven. The Buckeyes improved their defense, tallying 11 total digs as a team.The final set of the night started off similarly to the second, with the teams going back-and-forth until the 49ers began to pull away to establish a 19-15 lead, OSU’s largest deficit in the set. However, the Buckeyes rallied for six straight points and won the set in extra points, 26-24.OSU combined for 19 kills and attacked at .516 rate in the fourth set.“Nic is such an experienced player that he knows when people are in front of him, how to take a bad set and do something good with it,” Hanson said. “I think you kind of saw that on the last play. It wasn’t a great set, but Nic made a great swing off the hand. The next thing you know, the ball’s in the bleachers and it’s match point, we win.”OSU goes for the record at Ball State on Thursday at 7:30 p.m. The Buckeyes then play Indiana-Purdue Fort Wayne on Saturday at 7 p.m. read more

Pistol coach made big strides with program

Freshman James Sweeney walked across the Oval numerous times in 1952. Fifty-eight years later, he is still making that same walk.Sweeney’s history at Ohio State is remarkable. In his time, he has seen six football National Championships, five Heisman award winners, four Ohio State structures listed on the National Register of Historic Places, three Pistol National Championships, two pistol athletes win the Big Ten Conference Medal of Honor award, and one ultimate success: educating students.Sweeney is 76 years old and approaching his twelfth season as coach of the Ohio State pistol team.He graduated from Ohio State in 1957 with a degree in physical education. He later pursued a master’s in curriculum design and a doctorate in sport pedagogy (a focus on educating others how to teach sports) from Ohio State.Ever since he got out of college, he has been putting his degree to work. Whether this is college students or collegiate athletes, Sweeney has been educating since 1958.“I would say if there is one way to define him, in general, it is that he is a very wise person,” senior pistol member Tyler Phillips said. “If we are all paying attention, he is not only teaching us about shooting, but life as well.”Three years ago, Sweeney was able to persuade OSU to give out scholarships for pistol recruits. This was a huge accomplishment for a small athletic program, but the recognition of scholarships was a double-edged sword for the educator.“I liked taking walk-on’s and turning them into elite collegiate athletes,” Sweeney said. “I enjoy working with highly skilled individuals who have had previous training for years, but on the other hand, the satisfaction of teaching is not quite the same. I miss that part.”Sweeney’s mixed feelings can be expressed through two of his players.Phillips was a walk-on athlete from the pistol club.“(Sweeney) introduced me to the sport,” he said. “He taught me everything I know. Not only did he talk to me about shooting, but he also taught me a lot about philosophy in the sport as well.”Sophomore Christina Heaton was recruited as a scholar-athlete and has competed in the junior Olympics.“I don’t talk to (Sweeney) that much personally,” Heaton said. “When we are practicing, he will give us an event to work on and we will practice.”Though Heaton is part of a more experienced group of OSU pistol shooters, she still needed to seek advice from the coach during a big slump.“If you have problems, you can go to him,” she said. “He sat down with me and we started from the basics…he really helped me out.”Sweeney has been retired since 1994, but continues to teach with emeritus status.For a man who is 76, he is in top physical shape. He walks to campus everyday, uses a car only when it is necessary and still does small physical workouts.Even at such an old age, he is not worried about leaving Ohio State any time soon.“I am just playing it year-by-year,” he said. “As long as I am healthy, enjoy what I do and can relate with the students, before I get too old, I have no definite retirement plans.”Coach Sweeney has experienced a lot of Ohio State history, but, in the process, has also become a part of it. read more

Memorable Memorial for Tiger Woods

Jack Nicklaus, the all-time leader in men’s golf major championship victories with 18, founded the Memorial Tournament in 1976. Thirty-six years later, Tiger Woods won Nicklaus’ tournament for the fifth time, and tied Nicklaus in the record books for the second-most all-time on the PGA Tour.Woods, who previously won the tournament in 1999, 2000, 2001 and 2009, finished the tournament with a 72-hole score of 279 (9-under-par), two strokes better than Rory Sabbatini and Andres Romero, who tied for second place at 7-under-par. The tournament, which began Thursday and concluded Sunday at Muirfield Village Golf Club in Dublin, Ohio, was Woods’ second victory of the season.The win was also Woods’ 73rd victory of his PGA Tour career, tying him with Nicklaus. On the all-time wins list, Woods trails only Sam Snead, the all-time leader with 82 victories.Woods said it was “awfully special” to tie Nicklaus on the all-time wins list, with Nicklaus watching him on the 18th hole.“It’s special for me to do it here, to do it with Jack here,” Woods said. “It just makes it that much more special.”After cracking a joke, Nicklaus also praised Woods’ achievement.“Well, he had to rub it in my face right here, didn’t he?” Nicklaus said. “No, if he’s going to do it, which he was obviously going to, I’d like to see it happen here. That was good. That was great.”Woods hit 14 out of 18 greens in regulation on Sunday, but his winning round could be remembered most for one of the four holes that he did not.Woods hit an errant tee shot on the 16th hole in the rough behind and to the right of the green. He recovered by converting his second shot, a 49-foot-10-inch chip, for a birdie. That birdie moved Woods into a tie for the lead at 8-under-par with Sabbatini.Nicklaus gave the shot high praise, while Woods admitted that the shot was challenging.“Under the circumstances, I’ve never seen a better shot,” Nicklaus said.Woods finished Sunday’s fourth and final round with a score of 67 (5-under-par), which tied three other golfers for Sunday’s best score.Woods said his round on Sunday was “fun.”“I had it all today,” Woods said.Rickie Fowler, who was paired with Woods on Sunday, said he was impressed with his playing partner’s performance.“He looked very comfortable and hit a lot of good shots,” Fowler said. “The times where he’s in the moment and in the heat of contention is where he really shines.”Fowler came into Sunday at 5-under-par, but finished the tournament at 7-over-par to finish in a tie for 52nd place.Woods came into the round at 4-under-par, four strokes back of the tournament’s 54-hole leader, Spencer Levin. He birdied four of his first seven holes to move within one stroke of the lead behind Levin, who was 9-under-par at the time. Woods dropped back to 6-under-par, however, after bogeying two of his next three holes, and remained at 6-under-par through the 14th hole.Down the stretch, however, Woods birdied the 15th, 16th and 18th holes. Following Woods’ chip-in, Sabbatini bogeyed the 16th hole to fall to 7-under-par, and Woods held the lead all the way to victory.Levin finished the tournament at 5-under-par to tie for fourth place.Woods said that he feels “comfortable” playing at Muirfield Village Golf Club, where the Memorial Tournament is held annually.“For some reason over the course of my career, I’ve done really well on (Nicklaus’) golf courses, even going back to my amateur days,” Woods said. “I just have a good feeling of how to play the golf course.”Woods will compete next at the second major championship of the year, the 112th U.S. Open, which will be held June 14-17 at The Olympic Club in San Francisco, Calif. Woods, a 14-time major champion, is a three-time U.S. Open winner. Woods tied for 18th at the 1998 U.S. Open, the last time the tournament was held at The Olympic Club.Asked whether he is “back,” and ready to win another major championship, Woods gave a quick response.“I won,” Woods said with a laugh. read more

Urban Meyer fairly optimistic Braxton Miller will play against California

Ohio State’s top two quarterbacks both suffered injuries during the Buckeyes’ most recent football game against San Diego State, but OSU coach Urban Meyer is confident Braxton Miller and Kenny Guiton will be ready to play Saturday against California.Miller, the Buckeyes’ junior starting quarterback, suffered an MCL sprain in his left knee during the first quarter of the SDSU game and did not return. He resumed throwing Tuesday and was scheduled to practice in a “limited capacity,” Meyer said during Tuesday’s Big Ten weekly coaches’ teleconference.“His arm is fine and everything, it’s just can he plant, can he move and all that,” Meyer said. “I’ll know more of that after (Tuesday’s) practice.”Meyer said he will know tomorrow whether Miller will be available to play Saturday.“I’m fairly optimistic (Miller will be able to play),” Meyer said. “The improvement made between day three (since suffering the injury) and day four is very important, and that’s usually substantial.”Miller, the 2012 Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year, has completed 17 of his first 24 passing attempts this season. He has passed for 208 yards and two touchdowns with one interception. He has also gained 82 yards on 18 rushing attempts.Guiton, a redshirt-senior, was brought off the bench and into action for the second consecutive week to start the season after Miller went down with an injury. Guiton played the rest of the game for OSU, completing 19 of 28 passes for 152 yards and two touchdowns, while also gaining 83 rushing yards on nine attempts, including a 44-yard rushing touchdown.Guiton helped lead the Buckeyes to a 42-7 victory, but in the process may not been fully healthy. Meyer said Guiton hit his hand on a helmet following one of his throws, which caused his hand to be “very swollen” Sunday.“He’s a tough guy that fought through it,” Meyer said of Guiton.Meyer said Guiton is “fine,” and defined the injury as a contusion.“He’s ready to go,” Meyer said.Kickoff for OSU’s first road game of the season is scheduled for 7 p.m. at Memorial Stadium in Berkeley, Calif. The 2-0 Buckeyes will be looking for their third win of the season against the 1-1 Golden Bears. read more

Commentary Bowl Championship Series predictions good for Ohio State

After one of the most riveting weekends of college football in recent memory, voters will need to put some serious thought into their submissions over the next two weeks.This past Saturday, two climactic finishes turned the tide of the BCS picture. Faced with the possibility of suddenly downing rival Ohio State, Michigan coach Brady Hoke made an all or nothing decision to attempt a two-point conversion late in the game with the Wolverines down one. After OSU redshirt-freshman cornerback Tyvis Powell intercepted redshirt-junior quarterback Devin Gardner’s pass attempt, the Buckeyes managed to survive and stay unbeaten.The rest of Saturday’s games made OSU one of only two unbeaten teams from BCS conferences (the other being Florida State). Previously undefeated and top-ranked Alabama lost to then-No. 4 Auburn, after senior cornerback Chris Davis returned a failed Alabama 57 yard field goal attempt 100 yards for a touchdown.After the release of the BCS standings on Sunday night, the Top 5 rankings are No.1 Florida State, No. 2 OSU, No. 3 Auburn, No. 4 Alabama and No. 5 Missouri.If Florida State and OSU both win their conference championship games (against No. 20 Duke and No. 10 Michigan State respectively), it seems difficult to prevent both teams from playing in the national title game. I predict that both teams will win, and that this scenario will occur. If either team loses, the media’s SEC bias may sneak the winner of the SEC Championship game between Auburn and Missouri into the title game (especially if Auburn wins).Looking beyond the title game, I do believe that Auburn will win the SEC Championship. Between their No. 5-ranked rushing attack and scoring proficiency (ranked 18th in points per game), Auburn should pull out a tight victory over Missouri.In the Pac-12, I see No. 11 Arizona State will upset No. 7 Stanford in the championship game. Most of Stanford’s victories have been close games, and they almost melted down against then-No. 2 Oregon, even though they held on for a six point victory. Although Arizona State has also had many close victories, they will be playing at home, where they have defeated every opponent besides No. 21 Wisconsin by at least double digits (ASU is 8-1 as the home team, with the lone loss to Notre Dame).In the Big 12, I predict that No. 6 Oklahoma State will win the conference. I think that No. 9 Baylor will lose to No. 25 Texas, and the Cowboys will take down No. 17 Oklahoma, thus securing their place in a BCS bowl.In the American Athletic Conference, I believe that the No. 16 Central Florida will win the BCS bid. Although I believe that No. 19 Louisville is the more talented team, it seems that most scenarios favor UCF claiming the bid (since they are undefeated in conference, including a win against Louisville).These results would lead to the following matchups:Rose Bowl: Michigan State vs. Arizona StateFiesta Bowl: Oklahoma State vs. Alabama (At Large)Sugar Bowl: Auburn vs. UCFOrange Bowl: Clemson vs. Northern Illinois (At Large)National Title Game (in Pasadena, California): Florida State vs. Ohio StateI predict that Michigan State, Oklahoma State, Auburn and Northern Illinois will all win their BCS contests. Oklahoma State and Alabama will probably be the most intriguing regular BCS contest as both teams have only one loss on the season by single digits.As for the National Title game, it will be close. I predict in a thriller similar to the Michigan game, the Buckeyes will prevail at the last second. Considering the talents of Carlos Hyde and Braxton Miller (who combined for 379 rushing yards against Michigan), Florida State will be hard pressed to stop the Buckeye run game. read more

Police appeal after suspect launches unprovoked assault on customer in Newham chicken

first_imgMan launches 'unprovoked assault' on customer in Newham chicken shop Newham Borough detectives have released CCTV footage of a man allegedly launching an “unprovoked” attack on a customer in an east London chicken shop.Police were called at approximately 9pm on Wednesday 27 July to a report of an assault at a Papa’s Chicken in High Street North,  Newham.CCTV shows the moment the victim pays for some food and turns to leave. As he turns, he brushes shoulders with the suspect who starts to shout and argue with him.  The suspect then attacks the victim. The victim suffered cuts to his head and eye lids as well as a bruised jaw after being hit over the head with a chair.Later, the suspect ran off along Milton Avenue. He returned to the rear of the shop armed with a knife and left upon police arrival.Police attended and found a 25-year-old man being treated by London Ambulance Service.Detectives are keen to hear from anyone who may recognise the man in the white shirt or who witnessed the assault.Anyone with any information is asked to contact police via 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Man launches ‘unprovoked assault’ on customer in Newham chicken shopCredit:Metropolitan Policelast_img read more

Tescos hitech plan to hunt down cheating shoppers who use disabled parking

first_img Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Tesco parking officials are using handheld devices to catch out disabled bay cheats, it has emerged amid supermarket clampdowns on misuse by people who do not hold a blue badge.The supermarket is believed to be the first high street giant to harness the new technology to catch out shoppers parking illegally.Parking attendants use the app on the device to record details of vehicles parked in disabled bays that are not displaying blue badges. Parking company Horizon then checks the vehicles against the DVLA database so that it can send out a parking charge notice to owners by post.  I got to know students and their loved ones and learnt about living with a disability. “The new self-monitoring scheme allows stores to better control their car park, to help protect the disabled bays. This makes parking at Tesco fairer for everyone.”I spoke to British paratrooper Jordan Beecher who shops at our Finchley store. In 2012, while on his third operational tour of Afghanistan, he stepped on an improvised explosive device which claimed his left leg.”Jordan told me it was imperative that he had access to disabled parking as he adjusted to his new circumstances.”She added: “Disabled parking is an important part of the customer experience that is sometimes overlooked. I’m trying to change that.”The scheme was initially trialed in 70 stores before being rolled out nationwide, she said.CORRECTION: When this article was first published it mistakenly suggested that the scheme was designed to catch people using “fake” blue badges, whereas its purpose is to identify vehicles that do not display a blue badge. The article has been corrected accordingly and we are happy to make this clear. center_img It comes after growing complaints from customers including disabled ex-servicemen and women as well as able-bodied shoppers at abuse of the system.Many of those who need the spaces are soldiers who suffered life changing injuries and are trying to adapt back into normal society.The technology has been introduced by Tesco’s car park operations manager, Cat Parkinson, whose parents were teachers at a school for pupils with special needs, making it an issue close to her heart, she said.She also spoke to disabled servicemen and women before launching the scheme this week. She said: “The subject of living with disability is close to my heart.last_img read more

Emojis on council tax bills Council puts crying face on residents statements

first_imgA council has raised eyebrows by adding the crying face smartphone emoji to residents’ online council tax statements.People living in the London borough of Lambeth were shocked to see the image of a character in floods of tears next the amount they must pay in council tax.The blunder, which the council blamed on a technical error, emerged when Lambeth resident Alice Jones, a writer, posted a picture of her council tax notice on Twitter.Alongside the text explaining that an instalment of £112 was due next month were three crying face emoji.The TaxPayers’ Alliance said the incident is “pushing the boundaries” of the “level of professionalism” residents should expect in communication from their local authority.Posting a screenshot of her online statement on Twitter, Ms Jones said she was “not sure about Lambeth’s use of emojis on my council tax bill”. I doubt if many families struggling to keep up with their ever-rising council tax bill would be able to see the funny side of itJohn O’Connell, TaxPayers’ Alliance Responding to the Lambeth council case, John O’Connell, chief executive of the TaxPayers’ Alliance, said: “This will certainly raise eyebrows.”Taxpayers are entitled to expect a certain level of professionalism in their councils’ communication with them and this letter is certainly pushing the boundaries.”I doubt if many families struggling to keep up with their ever-rising council tax bill would be able to see the funny side of it.”The view that emoji are taking over is echoed by Jeremy Burge, founder of Emojipedia, a search engine for emoji. He said: “All the data shows that emoji use is growing. Bit by bit they are creeping into places where previously, they didn’t exist.” Not sure about Lambeth’s use of emojis on my council tax bill pic.twitter.com/OqGikwNQgZ— Alice Jones (@alicevjones) December 13, 2016 Today Translations, a translation firm based in the City of London, is currently advertising for an “emoji translator/specialist”.The firm’s chief executive, Jurga Zilinskiene, said: “I believe that emojis could establish themselves as a language in their own right and take over other languages.”They are in our conscience, and help to articulate our feelings, which can sometimes be hard.” She added that the company had received hundreds of applications for the role from all over the world.Lambeth council could not confirm how many residents might have seen the emoji on their council tax statements.A spokesman said: “The emojis appeared on council tax notices when accessed on iPhones, due to the way certain software interprets the coding.  This was obviously an error and it has now been rectified.”What do you think? Join the debate by leaving a comment below.center_img Emoji, which have been described by experts as the fastest growing form of language in history, are increasingly being used for official purposes. Earlier this year, an internal Foreign Office report showed that British diplomats use the instant messaging service WhatsApp to discuss sensitive issues.It was reported that popular emoji used by UK diplomats were the shaking hands icon and the flag symbols when talking about other countries.There was also a suggestion that Vladimir Putin, the Russian President, is referred to by the use of a grey alien head emoji. In September, a High Court Judge handed down a ruling in a family court that used smiley face emojis to help explain a drawing in a difficult case involving domestic abuse, police investigations and extremism. The ruling by Mr Justice Peter Jackson was thought to be the first in English legal history to include an emoji as a point of evidence.Professor Vyv Evans, of Bangor University, recently conducted research on the use of emoji in the UK in association with TalkTalk.“Emoji is the fastest growing form of language in history based on its incredible adoption rate and speed of evolution,” said Professor Evans.“As a visual language emoji has already far eclipsed hieroglyphics, its ancient Egyptian precursor which took centuries to develop.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

Female police officer had sex with rape victim in McDonalds toilets court

first_imgPeters was handed a sentence of 22 months by Judge Anthony Leonard QC at Southwark Crown Court, after she previously pleaded guilty to misconduct in public office.Kate Bex, prosecuting, said Peters was trained to deal with the “emotional impact” on victims of sexual assault and would have been expected to recognise victims’ vulnerability. “Ms Peters was in a position of trust,” she said.The pair’s first sexual contact – a kiss – took place on February 24 at the refuge where the victim was staying.Ms Bex said the victim “flirted” with Peters and “made it clear to her that she found her attractive and therefore in her own words she encouraged it”.A couple of days later consensual sexual intercourse took place at the victim’s grandfather’s house when Peters was on duty, Ms Bex said.Another sexual encounter happened at the same place on March 1, another in a hotel on March 8 and later the same month the pair had sexual intercourse in the “lavatories at McDonald’s”, Ms Bex added. It was just two people who fell for each other in bad circumstancesKate Bex, prosecuting repeating what the victim said Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. The pair had consensual sexual intercourse in the "lavatories at McDonald's" The pair had consensual sexual intercourse in the “lavatories at McDonald’s”Credit:Rui Vieira The relationship was revealed when the victim told a member of staff at the refuge that she had broken up with Peters.The court heard that the victim said she realised that Peters was never going to leave her girlfriend.”And to use her own words, she was tired of being her dirty little secret,” Ms Bex said.At Peters’ request, the victim deleted the app on her phone that hosted messages between the pair. Peters threatened to kill herself, and the victim cut her wrists resulting in her having to go to hospital.In an interview in November, the victim described having been “in love” with Peters. It is clear that V loved you and you loved V and you are not being punished for that factJudge Anthony Leonard QC Asked if she thought Peters was taking advantage of her, Ms Bex told the court the victim said “no” and said the victim added: “It was just two people who fell for each other in bad circumstances.”Judge Leonard said it “beggars belief” that Peters, someone he said seemed to be so admired, did what she did.Referring to the victim as “V”, he said: “It is clear that V loved you and you loved V and you are not being punished for that fact.”The judge said the police force was “shocked” by her actions, saying: “I accept that your behaviour was out of character.”But he added: “You must have realised as soon as it started how inappropriate your relationship was.”The judge told Peters her actions will bring her career to an end.He pointed out that while the relationship was consensual he does not accept that her behaviour was not “predatory”. A police officer who had sex in a McDonald’s toilet with a rape victim she was assigned to help has been jailed for 22 months.Charlotte Peters, 33, from Luton, was based in the Sexual Offences Exploitation and Child Abuse Command in the Metropolitan Police when she had a relationship with a young female.The officer was in a “position of trust”, responsible for acting as a liaison between the victim and the police investigation, when she had sexual encounters with the victim who was “in love” with her.last_img read more

Son of motor neurone disease sufferer escapes prosecution after helping him commit

first_imgWilliam Maguire Snr was found at the wheel of his car, parked in his garageCredit:Darren Toogood/Solent News & Photo Agency Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. “He put his son in an almost impossible position, in my view.”Mr Maguire Jnr was arrested on suspicion of assisting a suicide but was not prosecuted. After initially denying involvement he later said: “You already know. I helped my dad commit suicide.”He also told officers that he “loved his father very much”.A spokesman for the CPS said: “We were passed a file in relation to this case, but it was decided that there should be no further action as it was not in the public interest to proceed.” CPS guidelines say that any prosecution for the crime of “encouraging or assisting suicide” must be in the public interest. Prosecution is less likely if the victim had already made up his mind about killing himself, help from the suspect was minor and reluctant and the suspect reported the suicide to police. Sarah Wootton, chief executive of Dignity in Dying, which campaigns for assisted dying, said: “Tragically, this is not an isolated incident.”Around 300 terminally ill people end their own lives in this country every year. Every eight days someone from Britain travels to Dignitas for an assisted death.”The UK’s current blanket ban on assisted dying denies dying people the choice and control they deserve at the end of life.”It forces many people like William to take matters into their own hands, ending their own lives behind closed doors in traumatic circumstances. The effect this has on their loved ones can be devastating.”  Police at William Maguire's house in Cowes, Isle of Wight. He was found dead at the wheel of his car parked in his garage in Cowes, Isle of Wight on March 1 2015 after his son called the police. Pathologist Dr Basil Purdue said he died from a mix of drug intoxication and alcohol. His son had helped him into the car and left him with drugs and a bottle of whisky, the inquest heard. Mr Matthews said: “It’s an extremely depressing condition not only for the sufferer, but for the family of the sufferer. I’m not in the least bit surprised Mr Maguire acted in the way he did.”I’m satisfied that on March 1 he was quite determined to be successful in his suicide attempt, so a belt and braces operation was undertaken by him using the somewhat resistant assistance of his son. The son of a former prison governer who suffered from motor neurone disease escaped prosecution after helping his father to end his own life because it was “not in the public interest”. William Maguire, 54,  was put in “an almost impossible position” by his father’s illness, and helped him to commit suicide “out of great love”, assistant coroner John Matthews told Isle of Wight Coroner’s Court. Mr Maguire Jnr was arrested by Hampshire Police but later released without charge after the CPS decided not to go ahead with the prosecution. His father, also called William Maguire, had a series of health problems including severe lung disease, raised blood pressure, bowel inflammation and depression. He was then diagnosed with motor neurone disease at the start of 2015.He had talked about travelling to Swiss assisted suicide clinic Dignitas and was “determined” to end his own life, the inquest heard.last_img read more

Nick Robinson BBC has no duty to broadly balance Brexit reports as referendum

first_imgThe BBC no longer has a duty to provide balanced coverage of Brexit, according to Nick Robinson, presenter of the Today programme.Those who accuse the corporation of bias “find it hard to accept that on the BBC they will often hear people they disagree with saying things they don’t like”, Robinson said.That group includes more than 70 MPs who wrote to Lord Hall, the BBC director-general, complaining about the “pessimistic” tone of Brexit coverage.Lord Hall replied to the MPs insisting that “we go to great lengths to ensure that we balance our coverage and address all issues from a wide range of perspectives”.However, writing a column in Radio Times – which begins: “Welcome to another week of moaning about the BBC” – Robinson said he was tired of Leavers and Remainers monitoring the corporation’s output with “stopwatches and calculators”.“Enough! Leave it out. Remain calm,” he said. “The referendum is over. The duty we broadcasters had to ‘broadly balance’ the views of the two sides is at an end. Why? Because there are no longer two sides, two campaigns, two rival sets of spokespeople reading out those focus-grouped slogans. Nick Robinson in the Today studio Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Nick Robinson in the Today studioCredit:Jeff Overs/BBC/PA “The BBC’s job is not to look over its shoulder wondering whether a report, interview or discussion will provoke letters of complaint or a tide of tweets from Remainers or Leavers – who, like fighters who emerge after months of hiding in a bush, seem not to accept that the war is over.“Our job, instead, is to keep our eyes firmly fixed on the audience as a whole… people who would not dream of defining themselves by how they voted in the referendum.”Robinson said that “if company A announces that it will invest more in the UK and create more jobs, it’s not our duty to search for a company that says it will invest less, just to balance the news”.“We must, of course, ensure that we display no bias. The bias I worry about most is the bias against understanding,” he added.Robinson also claimed that prominent voices for the Leave campaign – Boris Johnson, Liam Fox and Michael Gove – have been invited to appear on the Today programme over the past nine months but all have declined.In their letter to Lord Hall last months, MPs expressed fears that “by misrepresenting our country either as xenophobic or regretful of the Leave vote, the BBC will undermine our efforts to carve out a new, global role for this country.”last_img read more

Police rolling out technology which allows them to raid victims phones without

first_imgPolice forces across country have been quietly rolling out technology which allows them to download the entire contents of victim’s phone without a warrant. At least 26 forces now use technology which allows them to to extract location data, conversations on encrypted apps, call logs, emails, text messages, photographs, passwords and internet searches among other information. The searches can be done instantly at a local police station and are used by many forces for low level crime – regardless of whether or not someone is charged – and can be used on victims and witnesses as well as suspects. The Metropolitan Police, which was the first force to introduce the extraction devices during the London 2012 Olympics, has admitted that when a single photograph is required from a victim’s phone every one is downloaded. The revelations have led to concern that it could prevent victims coming forward, particularly in domestic abuse or rape cases. Naz Shah MP, who sits on the Home Affairs Select Committee, said:  “We have a situation where people who do not even know their data has been downloaded. “If police want to search someones house then they have to get an arrest warrant , but there is less information in a house than on the phone, which contains crucial information about conversations.” She has called on the Government to investigate the use as a matter of urgency, adding: “We currently have no legal framework or scrutiny, which leaves people open to abuse”. Privacy campaigners are calling for a change in the law to force the police to obtain a warrant before they using extraction technology. There are no clear rules on how long the data can be held, but a procurement document from the Met from 2015 says that it could require “maintenance for an indefinite period extending for many years”. Some forces, each of which provide different guidance, have even equipped officers with portable mobile phone extraction kits which can be used on the go. The technology has been rolled out despite concerns raised by the Police and Crime Commissioner for North Yorkshire, who found in a review that in half of cases officers had not received authorisation to download data and potentially sensitive data was lost. The Metropolitan Police in their instructions for using the devices admit that the kiosk will “obtain all data of a particular type, rather than just the individual data that is relevant to a particular investigation.”Continuing: “For example, if a photograph on a ‘witness’ mobile phone is relevant, because it shows an offence being committed, then the kiosk will acquire all photographs on that phone, rather than just the photographs of the offence. If text messages to a victim of harassment are required to investigate the harassment allegations, then the kiosk will acquire all text messages on that phone.”Wiltshire Police’s guidelines, which are currently under review, note that “collateral intrusion” is “unavoidable”. Unlike a search of a home in which an inventory of confiscated possessions is provided, police are not required to inform people what data has been extracted.Though guidelines say consent should be obtained from a witness before their phone is accessed, it is possible for this need to be overridden. A series of Freedom of Information requests by Privacy International revealed that 26 police forces are now using the technology and a further three are about to begin trials. Their report concludes: “Traditional search practices, where no warrant is required, are wholly inappropriate for such a deeply intrusive search. “Searching a mobile phone is not like searching a home or even a physical body search. A phone search is far more exhaustive, because of the vast amount of personal data that we now store on our devices.”A Home Office spokesperson said: “The Government is committed to ensuring that police officers have the appropriate powers to tackle crime. As part of this it is important that they can, in limited circumstances, access data that may be vital to their investigations.”Current legislation allows data to be accessed when there are reasonable grounds to believe it contains evidence in relation to an offence and only then in adherence with data protection and human rights obligations.”The Government is clear that the use of all police powers must be necessary, proportionate and lawful.”The National Police Chiefs Council say that the decision to use the technology is made in a case-by-case basis and “defined by the investigative requirements of the case”.Senior officers say it is not practical to obtain a warrant in each case and information is often needed quickly to prevent crime. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

Worlds largest dinosaur found in Scotland

first_img Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. “Their long-necked prints are almost car tyre size whereas the meat-eater ones are about the size of a basket ball.”Dr Brusatte added: “The more we look on the Isle of Skye, the more dinosaur footprints we find.Researchers measured, photographed and analysed about 50 footprints in a tidal area at Brothers’ Point – Rubha nam Brathairean – a dramatic headland on Skye’s Trotternish peninsula. The 170 million-year-old tracks were made in a muddy lagoon off the north-east coast of what is now the Isle of SkyeCredit:University of Edinburgh/PA Wire The footprints were difficult to study due to tidal conditions, the impact of weathering and changes to the landscape, researchers said. Researchers used drone photographs to make a map of the site. The oldest dinosaur fossil found in the UK is thought to be a 200 million-year old T. Rex relative, the Dracoraptor hanigani, found on a Welsh beach in 2016. “It shows both long-necked and meat-eaters were on the same site at the same time living together, side-by-side. Rare dinosaur footprints belonging to the largest animal to ever roam the planet have been found in Scotland. Dozens of the 170 million-year-old fossils, belonging to early sauropods, have been unearthed in a muddy lagoon on the Isle of Skye.Sauropods grew to be at least 49ft (15 metres) long and weighed more than 10 tonnes. Footprints from theropods – the “older cousins” of Tyrannosaurus rex who stood at two metres tall – were also found. They are thought to be the oldest dinosaur fossils ever found in Scotland. Another set of footprints were also found on Skye in 2015, but are slightly younger and slightly smaller. Geologists say the new finds are important as evidence from the Middle Jurassic period is rare, and few such fossil sites have been found around the world.The discovery adds to growing evidence the prehistoric reptiles were widespread on Skye at a pivotal time in their evolution. It also shows many dinosaurs, far from being restricted to the land, often lived near water and would wade through ancient lagoons to find food.Dr Steve Brusatte of Edinburgh University said: “It’s important because it’s a large site for dinosaur tracks, those are pretty hard to find. The 170 million-year-old tracks were made in a muddy lagoon off the north-east coast of what is now the Isle of Skye “It captures a moment in time 170 million years ago when they were just hanging out in a lagoon, living on the beach, back when Scotland was much warmer and dinosaurs were beginning their march to global dominance.”last_img read more

Divorce on demand risk if woman in loveless marriage is allowed to

Mr Owens's lawyer told a panel of judges that widening the interpretation of the law to allow her appeal "would amount to divorce on unilateral demand".    Divorce on demand risks becoming law if a woman succeeds in escaping her “loveless” marriage, the Supreme Court has heard. Tini Owens, 68, has been barred from divorcing her husband Hugh, 80, because his behaviour was not sufficiently bad to meet the requirements of the law. Mr Owens’s lawyer told a panel of judges that widening the interpretation of the law to allow her appeal “would amount to divorce on unilateral demand”. Mrs Owens has attempted to split from her husband of 40 years on the grounds that his behaviour meant she “cannot reasonably be expected to live with [him]”, one of the grounds for divorce under British law. But Mr Owens insisted the couple could stay together and in 2016 a family court judge ruled that allegations that he focused too much on work, did not provide her with attention or affection, and was “unpleasant and disparaging” towards her, comprised “minor altercations of a kind to be expected in a marriage” and not serious enough to grant her a divorce. The case has prompted family lawyers to campaign for a change in the law to allow “no-fault” divorce.  Mr Owens’s lawyer told a panel of judges that widening the interpretation of the law to allow her appeal “would amount to divorce on unilateral demand”.   Credit:Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire Last year Court of Appeal judges ruled against Mrs Owens but criticised the law, with Sir James Munby, president of the Family Division, saying it was based on “hypocrisy and lack of intellectual honesty”.  Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Barrister Philip Marshall QC, who leads Mrs Owens’ legal team, told justices at the Supreme Court on Thursday that a “modest shift” of focus in interpretation of legislation was required.He argued that the judge in the original case, His Honour Judge Tolson, had focused too much on whether Mr Owens’ behaviour was objectively unreasonable, as opposed to his wife’s experience of it. The judge did not have enough regard to the “impact upon Mrs Owens”, he said. But Nigel Dyer QC, leading Mr Owens’ legal team responded: “(Mrs Owens) is seeking, in effect, to change the law and introduce divorce on unilateral demand.”It is not a proper function of the Supreme Court to dilute or refashion a statute.”He added: “Parliament did not provide for divorce, either as a ground or as a fact leading to the ground, based on unilateral unhappiness.”The court reserved judgment for a later date.  read more