Will NIH Embrace Biomedical Research Prizes?

first_imgCenturies after the British government offered up to £20,000 for anyone who developed a precise method to determine a ship’s longitude—a British cabinetmaker won with his invention of a highly accurate clock—prizes for scientific or technical accomplishments are sexy once again. The X-Prize Foundation is largely responsible for this renewed interest, thanks to its multimillion dollar prize incentives for radical breakthroughs in areas such as DNA sequencing and manned spaceflight. U.S. government agencies, however, are also getting in on the act. NASA and the Department of Defense, for example, have launched several prizes to stimulate research advances or accomplish technical goals. But what about America’s premier funder of biomedical research, the National Institutes of Health (NIH)? NIH has so far sat on the sidelines of the prize game, but there are hints that may soon change. Yesterday, on NIH’s Bethesda, Maryland, campus, several parts of the agency held a meeting, Crowdsourcing: The Art and Science of Open Innovation, in which various government and private organizations that offer research prizes described their successes, prompting speculation over whether NIH will follow suit. And James Anderson, NIH’s director for the Division of Program Coordination, Planning, and Strategic Initiatives, said in his closing remarks to the audience that NIH Director Francis Collins would soon sign papers that would ensure NIH is compliant with the America COMPETES Act, which gives federal agencies the authority to offer cash incentives for researchers to tackle high-risk, high-reward research questions that have eluded more traditional funding platforms, such as grants and sponsored research. Yet Anderson declined to say how long it might be until NIH begins offering such prizes. “We’re asking people to be a little bit patient,” Anderson says. “But we’re making progress.” The America COMPETES Act was first passed in 2007 and was reauthorized in December. Under its authority, federal agencies outline a problem they’d like solved on Challenge.gov, then open the competition to individuals or teams, evaluate the results, and award a money prize to whoever turns in the best solution. Offering prizes has several advantages over granting or sponsoring research, said Dwayne Spradlin, president of InnoCentive, an online platform like Challenge.gov that hosts research competitions. Funders get many fresh looks at the problem for less money than it usually costs to provide a grant. “You’re distributing the risk and accelerating research and development in the process,” Spradlin says. 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Media guru Tim O’Reilly of O’Reilly Media discussed how patient-centered Web sites such as PatientsLikeMe.com collect massive amounts of data on patients’ symptoms, environments, lifestyles, and emotional states. Even though the data aren’t collected in a standard scientific way, he said, scientists should still embrace such a massive amount of information and mine it for new ideas. “We are building a global brain out there on the Internet,” he says. Adrien Treuille, a computer scientist at Carnegie Mellon University, added that this new global brain also likes to have a little fun while it does science. He and colleagues are the creators of two online video games, Foldit and EteRNA, that simulate protein folding and structural RNA mapping, respectively. These games have proven surprisingly popular among nonresearchers and players’ solutions often surprise scientists because their creativity isn’t constrained by what they think a correct answer should look like, Treuille says. And that’s precisely the value of crowdsourcing, he notes. “It’s not a linear thing to get the public involved in science,” Teuille says. “It’s incredibly nonlinear and all sorts of crazy things come out, some of it brilliant.”last_img read more

Fracking can prime faults for subsequent quakes

first_imgHydraulic fracturing in western Canada can prime faults for earthquakes that strike months after fracking ceases, reports a new study published this week in Science. Although it has long been known that the injection of wastewater into disposal wells can trigger earthquakes by increasing pore pressure and destabilizing fault lines, rarely has fracking itself been identified as the source of tremors. Typically, fracking involves injections into impermeable rock layers that inhibit the spread of fluid and increase pore pressure. Looking at seismic records near Fox Creek, in northwest Alberta, where there are six drilling sites, researchers found an intermittent set of induced earthquakes between December 2014 and March 2015, clustered around fracking operations. The majority of seismicity occurred during fracking as the elastic response of the rock caused mounting stress. However the largest quake, which had a magnitude of 3.9, struck on 23 January 2015—2 weeks after fracking had been completed. The researchers believe that a limited recovery of fracturing fluids—one well retrieved only 7% of its fluids—pressurized a fault that extended down to the crystalline basement, resulting in the series of quakes over several months. In the future, they say, drillers should take account of such risks, especially when they fail to recover fracking fluids.last_img read more

Silicon Valley plans another Madison for PM Modi

first_imgIndian-Americans in California have begun preparations for a grand reception similar to last year’s Madison Square Garden event for Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who would be the only second Indian premier to visit the state with a trip planned in September to Silicon Valley.Representatives of Indian-American organisations held their first full-fledged preparatory meeting in Sunnyvale, California to accord the grand reception to Modi at Silicon Valley, during the September visit.Modi is to attend the Annual General Assembly meeting of the United Nations in New York in September-end.After that, he is set to visit Silicon Valley and address Indian-Americans, including technology entrepreneurs, there though an official announcement is yet to be made.”We have planned a community reception on the evening of September 27 at the SAP Centre, San Jose where close to 20,000 people are expected to gather to hear him speak,” Khanderao Kand of newly-formed Indo-American Community of West Coast USA told PTI.The meeting was addressed by the Indian Ambassador to the US, Arun K Singh, via a video conference. Among others, it was attended by Consul-General of India in San Francisco, Venkatesh Ashok, and Dr Vijay Chauthaiwale, in-charge foreign relations department of BJP.Chauthaiwale is on a visit to San Francisco Bay Area to oversee the preparations for the reception.”The event is a historic moment for the Indian community in Silicon Valley and the diaspora in general,” he said.The Prime Minister’s visit is considered significant, especially with regard to his ‘Digital India’ initiative that aims to use technology in connecting people and transforming governance in India, said a media note by the organisation.advertisementModi would be the second Indian Prime Minister to visit San Francisco-Bay Area after Jawahar Lal Nehru’s trip in 1949.San Francisco-Bay Area, of which Silicon Valley is a part, is home to about half-a-million-strong Indian-Americans.Last year when Modi visited the US, he was given a grand reception at New York’s historic Madison Square Garden. He addressed nearly 20,000 Indian-Americans there.Like Madison Square Garden in New York, the SAP Centre is a top indoor venue in the US for such events.In 2006, the SAP Centre sold the most tickets to non-sporting events of any venue in the western US, and the fourth highest total in the world, after Madison Square Garden in New York City, the Manchester Evening News Arena in Manchester in Britain, and Air Canada Centre in Toronto.Last year, pop superstar Miley Cyrus performed at the arena during her Bangerz World Tour.In April this year, pop superstar Ariana Grande performed at the arena during her Honeymoon World Tour for the first time with a sold out crowd of 12,717 people.Organisers expect a packed crowd at the SAP Center, also known as Shark Tank, when Modi addresses Indian-Americans on September 27.last_img read more

Sania Mirza, Leander Paes book final berths at US Open

first_imgIndians had a great outing on Thursday with Leander Paes and Sania Mirza storming into US Open final. Paes pairing with another veteran Martina Hingis won their mixed doubles semifinal clash against Rohan Bopanna and Yung-Jan Chan. While Sania Mirza and Hingis downed top-seed pair of Sara Errani and Flavia Pennetta to enter women’s doubles final.The Indo-Swiss pair of Paes and Hingis didn’t not break much of sweat as they easily went past Bopanna and Yung-Jan Chan 6-2, 7-5. The duo are entering a grand slam final for the third time in this year. Paes and Hingis will now face Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Sam Querrey in the final.Earlier in the day, Hingis combined with Mirza and didn’t had much of trouble taking on the Italian duo of Errani and Pennetta 6-4, 6-1.Hingis and Sania took an hour and 17 minutes to battle past their Italian opponents in the semifinal match. The Wimbledon champions were tested in the first set, but they began to get in the groove in the second and went on to win the set in 28 minutes.Sania and Martina maximised spaces and kept hitting angles against their 11th-seeded opposition. The duo had a first serve winning percentage of 67.The Indo-Swiss pair took an hour and 17 minutes to battle past their Italian opponents in the semifinal match. The Wimbledon champions were tested in the first set, but they began to get in the groove in the second and went on to win the set in 28 minutes.advertisementThe top seeds made their way into the semis by beating Chinese Taipei ninth seeds Yung-Jan Chan and Hao-Ching Chan 7-6(5), 6-1 on Tuesday.Mirza and Hingis are a win away from winning their second grand slam title in two months. The duo won the Wimbledon title in July when they overpowered Ekaterina Makarova and Elena Vesnina 5-7, 7-6 (7/4), 7-5. They came from behind against the Russian duo in the final to clinch their first ever grand slam title.last_img read more

Wives delay last rites of ex-India footballer

first_imgTottenham Hotspur appoint Jose Mourinho as manager Former India footballer P Kannan’s body was left in the morgue for three days and was finally sent to Bengaluru for cremation, following a bitter feud between one of his two former wives and the current wife. The former forward, who played 14 matches for India, died following a prolonged illness on Sunday as his family said he’s survived by wife Antoinette and two daughters. But at the time of the body’s release, Kannan’s first wife Vijay Laxmi flew down from Bengaluru to claim possession, producing marriage certificate. During the controversy, it also came to light that Kannan also had a third wife, who is not traceable as Antoinette and Vijay Laxmi washed dirty linen in public as the dead body remained at the Gora Bazar morgue in Dum Dum for three days.Related News “The issue is sorted and his first wife took the body to Bengaluru after Antoinette relented,” South Dum Dum councillor Sanjoy Das told PTI. Kannan’s Kolkata-based wife Antoinette said she has given a no-objection letter. “I’ve given a no-objection letter and handed over the body to them. I’ve all the documents. I took care of him when he was alive and needed me. There’s no point fighting over a dead body. It’s just a log. As a wife, I have done my duty. I gave him everything that he needed,” Antoinette told PTI. “I’ve married to him since 1975. It’s been a long time. And when he was hospitalised, I was with him. There’s no point running for the dead body. He may have 10 wives but they have not done anything for him when he was alive. I didnt know about his marriage,” she added. For about a decade, the former Mohun Bagan and East Bengal forward was diagnosed with “severe osteoarthritis” that compounded his misery as he was a heart patient and had stent-implantation. Kannan was one of the few players of extraordinary calibre to have come to Bengal as he plied his trade both in Mohun Bagan (eight years) and East Bengal (two) and represented India at the 1966 Bangkok Asian Games and 1968 Meredeka Cup before leaving the pitch in 1982. He also won Santosh Trophy for Bengal twice in a row (1971-73) and was the top-scorer. It was legendary German coach Dettmar Cramer who had given him the best appreciation by calling him ‘Pele of Asia’ in 1968 when he was invited by the AIFF to conduct a two-week coaching in Mumbai. Catch up on all the latest sports news and updates here. Also download the new mid-day Android and iOS apps to get latest updates MSSA: Harsh fires Campion into final Miquel Blazquez Font to emerge as a competent sports journalist in the sporting worldlast_img read more

Former US Open champion Marin Cilin knocked out

first_imgFormer champion Marin Cilic had a golden chance to reach the U.S. Open final three years after lifting the trophy at Flushing Meadows, but the Croatian fifth seed blew it when he lost 6-4 5-7 5-7 4-6 against Argentine counter-puncher Diego Schwartzman in the third round on Friday.Cilic, the highest seed in a clear bottom half of the draw, eventually paid the price for his lack of match practice after skipping the U.S. Open warm-up tournaments in Montreal and Cincinnati due to injury.He hit 80 unforced errors in an untidy display on Grandstand, where he also served nine double faults.The Very Open #USOpen@dieschwartzman takes out No. 5 seed Cilic 4-6, 7-5, 7-5, 6-4 in R3!https://t.co/FQIIZXgeQs pic.twitter.com/shWovSspOv- US Open Tennis (@usopen) 1 September 2017″In the second round I played really well but today I was not coming up with the great shots,” Cilic told reporters.”It was a tough match… I didn’t have many free points on my serve, there were a lot of rallies.”Schwartzman was overwhelmed in the opening set before the 29th seed found his range to frustrate Cilic, who bowed out after wasting three chances to level for 5-5 in the fourth set.In a bottom half of a draw without a grand slam finalist and where American John Isner is now the highest seed at number 10, Schwartzman will take on either France’s Lucas Pouille or Kazakh Mikhail Kukushkin for a quarter-final spot.”I hope people can understand tennis is for everyone. It’s not just for the tall guys.”advertisement-@dieschwartzman https://t.co/9AqGcbSkGH #USOpen pic.twitter.com/19tjMVxZNF- US Open Tennis (@usopen) 1 September 2017″Sometimes if you have luck with the draw and you can take your chances, it’s always good for the new guys or for the guys who are out of the top 10,” said Schwartzman.”I think many players are doing well this week and are taking the opportunities because (others) are injured.”When the hard work continues to pay off…@dieschwartzman???????#USOpen pic.twitter.com/CpqGomjTQ7- US Open Tennis (@usopen) 1 September 2017The tournament is without the injured Andy Murray and Stan Wawrinka as well as Novak Djokovic, who has ended his season.Top seed Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer, the pre-tournament favourites, are in the top half of the draw.last_img read more

South Africa women claim consolation win over India in final ODI

first_imgIndia could not whitewash South Africa 3-0 in their own backyard as they beat India women by seven wickets in the third and final ODI of the three-match women’s series at Potchefstroom on Saturday.Having already pocketed the series 2-0, India came into the match in search of a whitewash but got all out of 240 in 50 overs. With a target of 241, South Africa looked in good stead throughout and did not lose many wickets and Mignon du Preez unbeaten 90 helped South Africa chase down the target with four deliveries to spare.India had outperformed South Africa in the first two ODIs, winning by 88 runs and 178 runs respectively but failed to show the same dominance in the final ODI. However, India still won the series 2-1.ALSO WATCHUnlike the first two ODIs where Smriti Mandhana stood tall among the batters with an 84 and 135 respectively, Mandhana was sent back to the pavilion for a duck by Shabnim Ismail.Her opening partner Deepti Sharma stood solid despite the early jolt and had a fruitful partnership with Veda Krishnamurthy.Mithali Raj failed to put up a good score once again and got out for just four runs. Harmanpreet Kaur, on the other hand, got a good start but failed to capitalise on it and fell down at 25.Thereafter, Krishnamurthy came and helped Deepti stabilise the innings with her fluent 56 off 64 deliveries. The two put up a good partnership before Krishnamurthy perished and soon Deepti also feel for 79 off 112 balls.Shikha Pandey managed the tail with a 31 not out but wickets fell from the other side quickly and South Africa managed to wrap up India for a below par score of 240.advertisementSouth Africa came on to bat in a bid to avoid a whitewash and only on Saturday, they managed to put up a solid batting display.Without their bowling spearhead Jhulan Goswami, India struggled to pick wickets and South Africa made the best of it.Shikha Pandey took an early wicket of Lizelle Lee when South Africa had put just 10 runs on board but thereafter, Laura Wolvaardt and Andrie Steyn steadied their innings.India managed to pick the second wicket only at 51 and that only meant much more solidity in Mignon du Preez. Mignon du Preez scored an unbeaten 90 to propel South Africa to the consolation win. (Photo: @OfficialCSA Twitter)Preez and Wolvaardt negotiated everything that the Indians through at them with much ease and even though the Indians managed to curtail runs and keep the flow of runs slow, South Africa breezed ahead with too many wickets in hand.The two South Africans guided the team ahead and Ekta Bisht finally managed to trap Wolvaardt when the score was already past the 160-run mark.It was only a matter of time from there as South Africa kept their calm and Preez stayed on the job and her efforts finally bore fruit when South Africa reached the target in 49.2 overs.Smriti Mandhana was named the player of the series for her solid batting performances in the first two ODIs that led to India’s victories.last_img read more


first_imgAuthorities have identified a California woman whose body was found in an SUV stopped after a high-speed chase in South Dakota as the mother of the driver.Attorney General Marty Jackley says the body of 58-year-old Michelle Walsh was found in the rear of the vehicle after a chase with her son, 30-year-old Tosten Walsh Lommen, of California.Lommen faces charges including aggravated eluding and drunken driving after a state trooper on Monday observed him driving over 100 mph on I-90 in western South Dakota.Jackley says South Dakota authorities are working with California officials on the death investigation.Autopsy results are pending.last_img read more

Gremio: No Barcelona deal for Arthur

first_imgTransfers Gremio refute claims of €40m Arthur agreement with Barcelona Ryan Benson 02:23 22/2/2018 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) arthur-cropped Getty Images Transfers Barcelona Grêmio Primera División Serie A The young midfielder Arthur has been linked with a move to Camp Nou, but speculation suggesting a deal has been struck is supposedly false. Reports of a €40million agreement between Gremio and Barcelona for midfielder Arthur are wide of the mark, according to the Brazilian club’s president Romildo Bolzan.Barcelona’s interest in the 21-year-old midfielder is long-standing, having been linked with him regularly towards the end of 2017, when Arthur was a key part of the Gremio side which won the Copa Libertadores.Arthur was photographed wearing the Catalan club’s jersey in a meeting with their sporting director Robert Fernandez in December. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Williams case shows Solskjaer isn’t holding Man Utd’s youngsters back – he’s protecting them Goalkeeper crisis! Walker to the rescue but City sweating on Ederson injury ahead of Liverpool clash Out of his depth! Emery on borrowed time after another abysmal Arsenal display Diving, tactical fouls & the emerging war of words between Guardiola & Klopp Although that angered Gremio, they have been in regular dialogue with Barca ever since over a potential move, with reports in Spain claiming on Tuesday that an agreement had finally been made.But Gremio insists such claims are purely speculation, with a deal still to be struck.Speaking to Radio Bandeirantes, Bolzan said: “A deal has still not been finalised.”There have been plenty of discussions, but at this stage the transfer cannot be considered a foregone conclusion.”last_img read more

Courtois thinks Hazard should always play 90 mins

first_imgChelsea ‘Hazard should play 90 minutes’ – Courtois surprised at Conte’s Man Utd substitution Harry Sherlock Last updated 1 year ago 20:25 28/2/2018 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(2) Eden Hazard Chelsea Paul Pogba Manchester United Getty Images Chelsea Premier League Eden Hazard Manchester United v Chelsea Manchester United The Chelsea goalkeeper wants to see his Belgian team-mate play the full match where possible after he was withdrawn in the second half at Old Trafford Thibaut Courtois admits he was surprised to see Eden Hazard substituted by Antonio Conte during the 2-1 defeat at Manchester United.The Blues slipped out of the Premier League’s top four after goals from Romelu Lukaku and Jesse Lingard earned United the points following Willian’s opener.Lingard’s winner came two minutes after Hazard had been substituted by Conte, with Pedro coming on for the Belgium international. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Williams case shows Solskjaer isn’t holding Man Utd’s youngsters back – he’s protecting them Goalkeeper crisis! Walker to the rescue but City sweating on Ederson injury ahead of Liverpool clash Out of his depth! Emery on borrowed time after another abysmal Arsenal display Diving, tactical fouls & the emerging war of words between Guardiola & Klopp Chelsea were then left without their most creative spark when chasing the game and Courtois has aired his surprise at his compatriot’s withdrawal. “I have no explanation for the substitution,” Courtois told Belgian outlet Play Sports. “I did not expect it, but it’s the manager’s choice. He’ll explain it. I can’t look into his head. “Of course, you want players like Eden 90 minutes on the pitch. He can always bring something extra.”Conte has been under pressure in recent weeks, with the Blues struggling domestically. Chelsea are currently fifth in the Premier League, two points behind fourth-placed Tottenham and 19 behind leaders Manchester City.Speaking after the defeat at Old Trafford, Conte suggested that Hazard had failed to maintain his high standards in the second half and that his withdrawal was merely a tactical decision.”No Hazard [is not injured], no,” he told a news conference. “It was a tactical decision. “You have to keep the same performance for 90 minutes, we didn’t have a great balance, and every single player has to try to work with the ball, without the ball, otherwise we lose our balance.”I think he’d finished his energy because the first half he ran a lot. The second half he started the same way, but when I see a player is a bit tired, my task is to find a different solution.”Meanwhile, Courtois was left deflated by the defeat at United, which came on the back of a 1-1 draw at home to Barcelona in the Champions League when Chelsea had also taken the lead.”After our goal, we conceded a counter-attacking goal just like last Tuesday but in the second half we had less of the ball, but even then we should never have lost this match,” he said.”If you do not do the small things well in top matches, you lose, which is what happened.” Check out Goal’s Premier League 2019-20 fantasy football podcast for game tips, debate and rivalries.last_img read more

LAFC makes statement with debut win in Seattle

first_imgMLS Bob Bradley’s LAFC makes statement with debut MLS win in Seattle Ives Galarcep @soccerbyives Last updated 1 year ago 14:31 5/3/2018 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Bob Bradley LAFC MLS Steven Bisig MLS Los Angeles Seattle Sounders v Los Angeles Seattle Sounders The expansion side enjoyed a dream start to life in MLS, with Diego Rossi’s winning goal and Tyler Miller’s big saves sparking an season-opening upset Bob Bradley hadn’t coached a match in more than a year, the longest such stretch of his coaching career, but he was rewarded for that wait on Sunday, as his Los Angeles FC made a dream start to life in Major League Soccer.The expansion MLS side went into CenturyLink Field and knocked off the two-time defending Western Conference champion Seattle Sounders, 1-0, to become the first team since those very same Sounders in 2009 to kick off an expansion season with a shutout victory, and first since the 2011 Vancouver Whitecaps to win their MLS debut.It was far from a dominant performance, and came, at least in part, with the help of the fact the Sounders rested some starters. But that doesn’t take away from the reality that LAFC looked like and played like a real team and not a collection of parts hastily thrown together, which can sometimes be the case with first-year squads. Editors’ Picks Williams case shows Solskjaer isn’t holding Man Utd’s youngsters back – he’s protecting them Goalkeeper crisis! Walker to the rescue but City sweating on Ederson injury ahead of Liverpool clash Out of his depth! Emery on borrowed time after another abysmal Arsenal display Diving, tactical fouls & the emerging war of words between Guardiola & Klopp “When you’re starting out as a team, you have to learn how to win different kinds of games,” Bradley said. “A lot of guys gave big efforts.”The dynamic duo of Carlos Vela and Diego Rossi figured to be the focal point of LAFC’s attack this season and needed just 11 minutes to let the rest of the league know just what a problem they will be to defend. Rossi’s one-time blast was the fastest debut goal by an MLS expansion team in league history, and while LAFC couldn’t generate a second, Rossi’s thunderbolt was a worthy first strike.Just as impressive was the defense Bradley was able to build, one that will help LAFC contend in year one. Even with Walker Zimmerman forced out of the lineup before kickoff, the defense was still good enough to keep a dangerous Sounders attack at bay, though it needed goalkeeper Tyler Miller to make a handful of excellent saves against his former team.The Sounders made LAFC earn it, even though veterans Clint Dempsey and Chad Marshall sat the match out to be ready for a vital CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinal clash with Chivas on Wednesday. Seattle still had enough firepower to spoil the visiting team’s MLS debut, especially with second-half substitutes Magnus Wolff Eikrem and Handwalla Bwana giving the Sounders a much-needed spark, forcing Miller into a total of seven saves on the night.As much as Seattle was missing key players, LAFC was also without some top options as well. Egyptian midfielder Omar Gaber was left on the bench after having been injured in preseason, Zimmerman was forced out, and newly-acquired Colombian midfielder Eduard Atuesta had yet to integrate into the squad. Throw in long-rumored designated player target Andre Horta, who could still be signed during the current transfer window, and you realize how far away LAFC still is from being the finished product.Nobody knows how much further there is still to go than Bob Bradley, who took the expansion Chicago Fire to an MLS Cup title 20 years ago. He knows how important a good preseason foundation was to build on, but also knows there is no rush to have his team reach its full potential just yet. Unlike his last job — Bradley’s doomed stint at Swansea City — the former U.S. national team coach actually had a hand in building this team. From Miller, who Bradley took first in the MLS expansion draft, to Benny Feilhaber, who he took to the 2010 World Cup during his time as U.S. coach, to first-round draft pick Joao Moutinho, who showed well in his professional debut.LAFC MLS“I don’t think we showed, football-wise, what we’re capable of, but that’s only going to get better,” Bradley said. “I’m very confident that, as we build this team, that we’re going to see some real football.”LAFC still has plenty to work on, including how better to hold onto the ball in order to avoid being bombarded with pressure like we saw on Sunday, but the foundation is clearly there for LAFC to be a strong expansion team, rather than a pushover. With a tough defensive nucleus, and the Vela-Rossi tandem up top, the newest MLS team is already a handful and will only get tougher as the final pieces to the puzzle are added in the coming weeks.Things won’t get any easier for the club though. LAFC faces a tough opening schedule, with five more road games looming before unveiling its new stadium with a visit from none other than the same Sounders team it just defeated. Earning points during this season-opening road trip is key to improving the team’s chances of being a serious playoff contender.”A lot of positives, great to win, but still a lot of work to do,” Bradley said.Could LAFC follow the path of Bradley’s previous expansion team and win a title? It’s way too early for that sort of talk, but what was made clear on Sunday is that Bradley made the most of his time away from the sidelines and has put together a team ready to be competitive against the very best that MLS has to offer.last_img read more

Four Storylines: Oregon State is First Test for OSU’s New-Look Offense

first_imgWhile summer seems to just be getting started, the college football season is quickly approaching. If you consider the day after OSU’s bowl victory over Missouri the start of the offseason and its season opener the end, we are nearly 80 percent through our drought of college football.So with less than two months to go before that Friday night kickoff in Corvallis, Oregon, let’s look at the Cowboys’ Week 1 matchup with the other OSU and what storylines will rule that weekend.First, the particulars.When: Friday, August 30 at 9:30 p.m. CentralWhere: Reser Stadium, Corvallis, OregonWatch: FS1Line: Oklahoma State -16.5The Pokes and the Beavers will be the featured late night draw for night two of the opening weekend of college football. It will be the only Power 5-on-P5 matchup on either Thursday or Friday and, despite the late kick, all eyes will be on the Cowboys looking to rebound from an uncharacteristic single-digit win season.On the other hand, Oregon State, under first-year head coach Jonthan Smith, went 2-10 and 1-8 in the Pac-12 last season. The Beavers have totaled just nine wins over the last four seasons and haven’t gone bowling since 2013.1. Biggest Question (It’s the Obvious One): Who Takes Snaps at QB?The answer to this question will likely be answered publicly before the Cowboys head to Corvallis, but we’ll get our first chance to judge the coaches’ decision on that Friday nightcap.Spencer Sanders, the assumed (or at least wished upon) savior of the program, or Dru Brown, the seasoned vet with two year’s worth of experience at the DI level?We’ve looked at this race from every angle we can thing of — and will have come up with a dozen more by the end of August — but this is a huge year for Mike Gundy and OSU. Normally they go as their QB does.This will be a huge game because, if nothing else, we’ll get our first look at the Cowboys offense and how Sean Gleeson and his QB can mesh and lead it.2. Who Else Will be Taking Snaps?The other OSU is also looking at a fall camp QB competition. Jake Luton was granted a sixth year of eligibility after missing chunks of both the 2017 and 2018 seasons due to injury. The 6-7 passer came was granted a medical hardship waiver and has his eye set on retaining QB1 duties. But he’ll have to fend off sophomore Tristan Gebbia, the former four-star Cali QB who transferred to Oregon State from Nebraska.3. A Deep Receiving CorpsYes, the [insert year] Cowboys return a deep and talented pool of receivers ready to put up boocoos of yards. But I’m, again, talking about the other OSU.Oregon State returns 11 of 12 receivers from a year ago including tight ends. The group is headlined by junior Isaiah Hodgins and senior Trevon Bradford. The 6-4 Hodgins led the Beavers with 876 yards, 59 catches and five scores in his breakout sophomore season, and the dynamic Bradford chipped in 649 on 56 catches with six TDs of his own.4. What Kind of Test Will OSU Provide?We were quick to bemoan Oklahoma State’s 2018 defense — and mostly with good reason — for several head-scratching losses. But the other OSU has been a leaky sieve as of late.In 2017, Oregon State’s defense ranked fourth-worst over the previous 14 seasons in S&P+ rating among Power conference teams. But last year’s Beaver D regressed even further, logging the worst S&P+ rating from any major conference since 2004. Last year’s Beavers defense ranked ahead of only the 1-11 UConn Huskies in both scoring defense (45.7 points per game) and total defense allowed (536.8 yards per game).That means that whoever starts at quarterback for OSU will get his debut against the returning worst Power 5 defense over the last 15 years. So if Spencer Sanders slings it for 500 yards and combines for six TDs, we will all need to do our best, however futile it may be, to temper expectations moving forward. While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up.last_img read more

Film Look: Three Things to Watch for From the K-State Offense

first_imgThe 24th-ranked Kansas State Wildcats head to Stillwater this Saturday boasting a 3-0 record which includes a nice nonconference win a couple of weeks ago against Mississippi State.KSU is off to an impressive start under first-year head coach Chris Klieman, who took over for the legendary Bill Snyder this past offseason. Before landing in Manhattan, Klieman had a long stint at North Dakota State (2011-18) serving first as the defensive backs coach, the defensive coordinator and then the head coach. In Klieman’s five seasons as head man, he recorded a 69-6 record and won four FCS National Championships.An incredible coaching resume is not all Klieman brought with him from NDSU, he also brought along his offensive coordinator Courtney Messingham. The former Bison OC broke multiple school and conference records during his two-year tenure, including most points scored, most touchdowns scored, total offense and rushing touchdowns.Now, Messingham’s offense has a lot of similarities to that of Snyder-led teams of recent years. He likes to get his power running game going, and then once you’re expecting run, he will hit you with play action. In addition, he utilizes RPOs and isn’t afraid to get the quarterback involved in the running game. One thing you’ll notice about Messingham’s offense is he often has the quarterback under center and he loves to have a fullback lined up in the backfield.For this post, I will cover my three key takeaways from KSU’s offense and give you a glimpse of what you might see on Saturday night in Boone Pickens Stadium.PowerPower is a run play that OSU fans are familiar with as it’s been a staple of the offense this season as well as during the Yurich tenure. Power normally involves a lineman pulling around to the play side to lead block through the hole. Messingham and the Wildcats love to run Power, specifically A-Gap Power, see the blocking scheme below. In the following clips, you’ll see two more play action concepts the Wildcats like to run. I’ve also seen Messingham utilize H-Counter and a couple of other variations of pulling linemen running plays. This keeps the defense guessing and creates different attack points for the offense, it also pairs well with the inside attack point of A-Gap Power. OSU defensive players like Amen Ogbongbemiga, Kolby Harvell-Peel, Malcolm Rodriguez, and others will have to be quick to the ball and avoid getting blocked by these big lineman attacking the second and third levels of the defense.Play Action Passing GameAs I mentioned above, Messingham likes to set teams up with his power running game and then catch them guessing with play action passes. One in particular play that he brought with him, that NSDU was running with current Philadelphia Eagle QB Carson Wentz before Messingham got there, is shown in the clip below from Ross Uglem. In addition to running back Power, the K-State teams of years past would also dial up Power with the quarterback. We haven’t seen KSU quarterback Skylar Thompson run the ball a lot this season, but he’s found success keeping it himself against past Cowboy defenses. I wouldn’t be surprised if we saw a little of this on Saturday. With the struggles the Cowboy defensive line has had stopping the run this season, it’s a little worrisome that KSU runs this play often and effectively. How will Jim Knowles defend the inside running game? The Pokes primarily base out of a three down linemen defense now, so will he bring the LBs up close to the line of scrimmage? Or, will he bring a safety down further into the box? It will definitely be an interesting chess match between Knowles and Messingham.Pulling Linemen to the PerimeterAlong with Power, I noticed a heavy utilization of pulling linemen to attack the perimeter in Messingham’s rushing attack. In the first clip below you see the center and the playside guard pull around the edge. Cowboy defenders will have to be disciplined in Stillwater this weekend and they can’t get caught looking with their eyes in the backfield, letting a man get behind them. If they do, it could be a long night for Jim Knowles.center_img Next, you’ll see the playside guard pull and attack a much smaller defender, creating a lane for the Wildcat running back. While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up. The tight end releases off the line and heads up the seam as Wentz fakes to the running back and hits the TE for a touchdown. Below you see K-State run something similar, although it doesn’t turn out so well. Ross Uglem of Bison Report explains in it more detail below and then the following video shows this play.The basic difference in the way that most teams run power and that way that NDSU does it is the shuffle pull from the pulling guard to keep his shoulders square to the hole.  Usually, a pulling guard will open up and run square to the sideline executing a “kick out” block a defensive end or outside linebacker. [GoPowerCat.com]Messingham and the Wildcats try to wear down teams by running this play over and over again throughout the course of a game. I saw them do it plenty of times against the Bulldogs, like in the example below.last_img read more

Tylan Wallace and Dez Bryant Have Had Eerily Similar Careers at OSU

first_imgWhile you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up. Tylan Wallace is … Dez Bryant? That’s the comp Mike Gundy made on Monday at his weekly press conference.It makes sense, too. In a vacuum, I’m always taking Dez because he’s bigger and more athletic, but I think Gundy’s right about Tylan, especially when it comes to this season. I’ve said this all year, but Tylan looks bigger, faster and better than he ever has before.In other words, he looks kind of like Dez.“First thing is that he’s not scared,” said Gundy. “You don’t see that a lot in today’s game. Considerably fewer players now are willing to throw their body at somebody else. It’s just a different generation when it comes to that.”Gundy congratulating himself internally for the subtle dig at #footballguys in 2019 vs. #footballguys back in his day when they ate raw meat before the games and played with cotton balls for shoulder pads.“He’s extremely physical, he’s not scared and he’s explosive. He’s going to have a really good vertical jump, and he’s an explosive type of athlete. Those guys come up on him and he can stiff-arm them, and he’s got great balance.”Yes … yes, I think this is true.48969094301_cf76232c82_k.jpg48969272427_1484ae1d56_k.jpg48969273162_4e10d91dd2_k.jpg“The play that he made Saturday was like Dez Bryant. It looked like something Dez would do back in the day. It’s about as good of a play as I’ve seen in a long time.”Here’s how one of our readers put it.If Jerry Jeudy for Alabama had that one highlight and nothing else, they would give him the Biletnikoff after the game. Wallace is far and away the best WR in the college game. He trucked one of the best LBers in the conference so hard he didn’t reenter the game.And the kid he stiff-armed is seeing a counselor twice a week to address the PTSD caused by said stiff arm. The last defender who whiffed did so on purpose after seeing his teammate get thrown to the ground like rag doll. That play was poetry in motion, and the poem was about a monster truck running over everything in its path. [PFB]That’ll sum it up.Every time Dez is brought up I am contractually obligated to post this video to remind you that he was the original Superman, even if Tylan wears the shirt.But yeah, it looks a lot like … this.Their pedigrees are eerily similar, too. Wallace was the 20th-ranked player in Texas coming out of high school. Dez was seventh. They were both four-star guys coming to Stillwater — Dez is the fourth-highest ranked recruit in OSU history, Wallace is 10th. Very different than the two-star studs in No. 28 and No. 81.The timelines are a little different here because Tylan played only a handful of games his freshman year while Dez played them all, but you can overlay their career stats and not tell much difference.Dez (27 games): 147 catches | 2425 yards | 29 TDTylan (26 games): 146 catches | 2512 yards | 20 TDSo yeah, maybe Tylan really is the Dez of this era. Their skills are probably more similar than if you tossed James Washington into the equation. It was a good Gundy reminder on Monday that we should both appreciate what Wallace is doing on this team and remember just how good the original Superman was back in his day. No. 2 and No. 1. No. 1 and No. 2. Whatever order you put them isn’t wrong, and both slot nicely in OSU’s lengthy lineage of elite college wideouts.last_img read more

Clemson QB Kelly Bryant Announces Decision On His Future

first_imgKelly Bryant of the Clemson Tigers reacts after a touchdown against the Miami Hurricanes in the third quarter during the ACC Football Championship.CHARLOTTE, NC – DECEMBER 02: Kelly Bryant #2 of the Clemson Tigers reacts after a touchdown against the Miami Hurricanes in the third quarter during the ACC Football Championship at Bank of America Stadium on December 2, 2017 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)Just three days after being told he was no longer Clemson’s starting quarterback, Kelly Bryant has made a decision on his future. The senior signal caller will transfer.Bryant revealed the news this morning in an exclusive interview with Manie Robinson of  The Greenville News. On Sunday, Bryant was informed by Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney that true freshman Trevor Lawrence was going to be the starting quarterback.Bryant is able to transfer thanks to the new NCAA redshirt rule. Because he only played in four games this season, Bryant has not lost a year of eligibility.He can graduate and transfer elsewhere, where he’ll be immediately eligible in 2019.BREAKING: Kelly Bryant tells the Greenville News he’ll transfer out of Clemson. https://t.co/sT5PgwER42— Rick Bonnell (@rick_bonnell) September 26, 2018In his interview with Robinson, Bryant says he feels he “didn’t get a fair shot” this season and felt being demoted was “a slap in the face.”“They asked me how I felt about it,” Bryant said, recalling his meeting with Swinney. “I was like, ‘I’m not discrediting Trevor. He’s doing everything asked of him, but on my side of it, I feel like I haven’t done anything to not be the starter. I’ve been here. I’ve waited my turn. I’ve done everything y’all have asked me to do, plus more.’“I’ve never been a distraction. I’ve never been in trouble with anything. To me, it was kind of a slap in the face.”The senior missed the last two days of practice after Swinney told him Lawrence was now the starter. On Monday, Swinney expressed support for Bryant if he told him he wanted to transfer.“Certainly if he walked in here today and said, ‘Hey, coach, I don’t want to play the rest of the year unless you’ve got to have me,’ well ‘Ok, if that’s what you want to do, I’m all for it.’ I love Kelly,” Swinney said. “I would be disappointed in that because we need him. But I wouldn’t judge him for that.”Bryant has started the last 18 games for Clemson. For his career, he’s thrown for 3,333 yards, 16 touchdowns and 10 interceptions. He’s also rushed for 987 yards and 16 touchdowns.The list of programs interested in Bryant for 2019 will be a long one. He’s a dual-threat with experience at the highest level of college football.Stay tuned for more on this breaking story.last_img read more

Public Servants Honoured for Excellence in Frenchlanguage Services

first_imgThree provincial government employees were recognized today, May 20, with Bonjour! Awards for Excellence in French-language Services. Acadian Affairs Minister Michel Samson was joined by community partners and colleagues from the public service to make the presentations. “Government has a vital role in developing and delivering important services in French for Acadian and francophone Nova Scotians,” said Mr. Samson. “It takes an enormous amount of work to make programs and services accessible in French, and I want to congratulate the Bonjour! Award recipients for leading the effort.” This year’s award recipients are: Joseph Muise, Department of Communities, Culture and Heritage Sylvie Lepine, Department of Energy Peter Woolaver, Department of Natural Resources Marilyn Wallace, Excellence in Service Delivery to the Public Patricia Fricker-Bates, Excellence in Leadership Kelly Besler, Excellence in Program Development Ms. Wallace, from Yarmouth, has been a porter at the Yarmouth Hospital for 25 years. It is important for patients to have someone who speaks their first language. Her warm, friendly and compassionate service in French has a calming affect with patients, which helps them during often difficult circumstances. Ms. Fricker-Bates, from Sydney, who recently retired, was the French-language Services representative for Nova Scotia Legal Aid. She provided French-language support in many ways, including co-ordinating French-language training for legal aid staff across the province. Her leadership was instrumental in translating the Brydges After Hours Telephone Duty Counsel Manual. Ms. Besler, from Halifax, is a child-protection co-ordinator at the Department of Community Services. She played a key role in making the Nova Scotia Child Abuse Registry fully available in French. Her determination led to people being able to request a search, make phone inquiries and receive all associated documentation in French. Three former French-language co-ordinators were also recognized for enhancing French-language services: Nova Scotians can like Acadian Affairs on Facebook or follow the province in French on Twitter @GouvNE.last_img read more

Amarinder sets deadline to complete programmes in 6 months

first_imgAmarinder sets deadline to complete programmes in 6 monthsChandigarh: Setting a deadline for the completion of his government’s flagship programmes within six months, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Thursday directed his Cabinet colleagues to expedite the execution of schemes. Local Bodies Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu, who is at loggerheads with the Chief Minister, was conspicuously absent from the first Cabinet meeting after last month’s parliamentary elections. Also Read – Pak activated 20 terror camps & 20 launch pads along LoC Expressing satisfaction that the Congress bucked the national trend to win in the state despite a Modi wave, the Chief Minister pointed out that Punjab was the only state where the Congress was in direct contest with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and its allies. However, he struck a note of caution, saying that there was no time to rest on laurels and they all had to work even harder now to meet the aspirations of the people and prepare for the 2022 Assembly polls. Also Read – Two squadrons which participated in Balakot airstrike awarded citations Making it clear that no delay would be tolerated in the implementation of the schemes, such as farm debt waiver, ‘Ghar Ghar Rozgar’ and the universal health insurance, the Chief Minister said the consultative groups should be formed immediately with two-three ministers and five-six legislators in each. The Secretary of the department concerned would be part of the group, which will suggest changes after reviewing progress and taking feedback from the beneficiaries. Any changes in the schemes should be notified by mid-July, said the Chief Minister, adding that where needed suitable modifications would be made to the schemes to ensure their effective implementation. Amarinder Singh also directed initiation of talks, on priority, with government employees in order to resolve their pending demands and address their concerns. Earlier, Technical Education Minister Charanjit Singh Channi stressed the need for urgent steps to resolve pending issues of various sections of the people, including Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes. Finance Minister Manpreet Singh Badal called for focused efforts to revive the confidence of the urban voters through development programmes aimed at strengthening facilities and infrastructure in the cities.last_img read more

Ban Kimoon urges credible dialogue to resolve crisis in Central African Republic

“I hope that the year 2008 will usher in a new era of an all-inclusive political dialogue in the interest of all the people of the Central African Republic,” Mr. Ban wrote in his latest report on the activities of the UN Peacebuilding Support Office in the country, known as BONUCA.Characterizing the overall political, security and socio-economic situation in the country as “fragile,” the Secretary-General pointed out that existing challenges are compounded by persistent mistrust among political actors, widespread poverty, continuing insecurity, serious human rights violations and a culture of impunity.Particularly worrying is the human rights situation in the north-western part of the country, around the border with Chad, where skirmishes between Government troops, rebels and bandits have led to “a serious humanitarian crisis,” Mr. Ban stated. In addition, there is a deepening perception that the CAR faces “a serious culture of impunity,” particularly for alleged abuses committed by the national security forces.The crisis brought about by rebel activities in the north-western and north-eastern regions of the country forced an estimated 200,000 people to become internally displaced and thousands of others to flee to Chad or Cameroon as refugees.Mr. Ban reported that the humanitarian situation has stabilized following the signing of a peace agreement between the Government and the Union of Democratic Forces (UFDR) rebel group in April, and displaced persons are returning to their villages. This has brought the number of internally displaced persons to some 45,000, down from 65,000, while another 45,000 remain in refugee camps in neighbouring Cameroon. “The expected deployment of the European Force in this region will contribute to the consolidation of stability,” Mr. Ban stated, referring to the UN-mandated, multidimensional presence, which will include European Union military forces, established by the Security Council in September to protect civilians and facilitate humanitarian aid to those in north-eastern CAR and eastern Chad.He welcomed the efforts underway for the deployment of the European force, as well as the decision by the African Union and the European Union to extend and strengthen the mandate of the regional peacekeeping effort known as FOMUC. Calling for a credible dialogue among all actors to overcome the differences between them, Mr. Ban stressed that the encouraging prospects from the Donors’ Round Table held in Brussels in October, which mobilized financial resources for the country’s development programmes, can only be sustained in a stable political environment. He added that while the UN will continue to support the country in its efforts to achieve lasting peace and mobilize international assistance, the primary responsibility for improving conditions in the CAR rests with its Government and people. 5 December 2007Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has appealed to actors in the Central African Republic (CAR) to engage in national dialogue to end the cycle of political instability and violence that continues to plague the country, pledging the sustained support of the United Nations in this process. read more

Annan lauds tsunami envoy Bill Clinton says the UN will continue his

Marking the final meeting of the international consortium set up to deal with the ravages of the deadly 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan today praised former United States President Bill Clinton for making a “profound difference” to millions of survivors of the disaster.Former President Clinton is expected to step down as Mr. Annan’s Special Envoy for Tsunami Recovery by the end of the year, but today he chaired the fifth meeting of the Global Consortium at the UN Children Fund’s (UNICEF) House in New York. “Mr. President, I know I speak for all in thanking you for your dedication and commitment to the recovery and rehabilitation effort. You have made a profound difference to the well-being of millions of tsunami survivors,” Mr. Annan said in a statement read out by UNICEF Executive Director Anne Veneman.The Global Consortium for Tsunami Recovery includes representatives from the UN, global financial organizations, and a wide range of other agencies and governments, including Thailand, Indonesia, the Maldives, Sri Lanka and India – the countries worst affected by the 26 December 2004 disaster.“You have sought to downplay your achievements… But let me trumpet my Envoy’s contributions: you have led, inspired, goaded, cajoled, and – when necessary – pushed all of us to do what we had to, and so much more,” Mr. Annan added. Today’s meeting reviewed progress made in recovery and rehabilitation efforts over the past two years, including replacing livelihoods and building local government capacity, and also looked for renewed commitments, as well as identifying key lessons learned and strategies aimed at reducing the risk from disasters.The devastating tsunami killed more than 230,000 people and affected more than 12 countries in Asia and, despite much progress in reconstruction, Mr. Clinton warned at the fourth meeting of the Global Consortium in April that major challenges remain.“There is substantial progress to report in areas like home and school construction and a welcome rebound in tourist arrivals but we still face formidable challenges, from addressing the housing needs of displaced persons, to increasing timber supplies without endangering forests, to addressing the remaining $100 million funding gap in the Maldives,” he said. read more

Ohio State alumna working toward Olympic dreams after lone year of club

OSU alumna Katiann Scherer.Credit: Courtesy of Katiann SchererA single year of a club sport is paying dividends for one former Buckeye.Katiann Scherer, a 2014 graduate of Ohio State, is the current goalie for the USA women’s team handball squad. The animal science major played just one year on the club team handball team at OSU, while also volunteering and working at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium and OSU’s College of Veterinary Medicine.Her path is an unconventional one, but, perhaps, it is a fitting way to arrive on the national team for a sport that receives very little attention in the U.S.Considered to be “soccer with your hands,” team handball features six court players, along with a goalie. Team handball was first played in the Olympics at the 1936 Berlin Games, but it was not until the 1976 Montreal Games that women’s team handball debuted. The U.S. has never medaled at the Olympics in the sport. Both the men’s and women’s top finishes came at the 1984 Los Angeles Games, where the men placed ninth and women placed fifth.According to Scherer, handball is the “most American sport that Americans don’t know about.”Scherer’s journey to the sport began at OSU’s annual Fall Student Involvement Fair, where she and her sister were looking for a club team sport to play together. Since the sisters each played soccer in high school and enjoyed the physical aspect of the sport, the search landed the pair with the OSU Team Handball club.“I had played (handball) a couple times in middle school,” Scherer said. “But besides that, I really had zero experience or knew what I was doing before joining the club team.”With that being said, Scherer began attending practices for about six months, although she admitted she didn’t know just how much she would enjoy the sport. But as time progressed, the team’s then-coach, Mark Ortega, began to notice the potential in the goalie. “I took a shot to the face during the practice, and (Ortega) noticed that I got right back up and liked my hustle,” Scherer said.Ortega, a former men’s national team handball player, became coach of the club team at OSU in order to “recruit” players to possibly try out for the women’s national team.Ortega told Scherer that she had the skills and abilities to make the squad and recommended that she travel to Auburn, Alabama, for the tryout. Following the advice of her coach, Scherer made the trip south to the facility of the USA Team Handball Residency Program, the location of the tryout.The former Buckeye, filled with nerves and with less than a year of handball under her belt, performed sensationally. USA coach Christian Latulippe became aware of Scherer’s ability, and granted her a spot on the squad.“It’s an amazing feeling to be able to represent the United States,” Scherer said. “The opportunity I get to travel, and meet all of these other girls from different countries, is out of this world.”Members of USA team handball. Credit: Courtesy of Katiann SchererAfter making her way onto the national team roster, it was time to train and attempt to qualify for the 2016 Summer Olympics held in Rio de Janeiro. “I was in Auburn for the past year, and we went to a few different countries to train, and also qualify through the (Pan-American) Games in Toronto this past summer,” Scherer said. Those training sessions and matches included trips to Guadeloupe, Puerto Rico and Cuba, as well as a meeting with the Canadian national team in Auburn. However, the women’s team did not qualify for this year’s Olympics, and will now attempt to work and win its way to a bid to the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo.Over this past fall, Scherer made her way to France to try out for professional handball teams in order to stay fit and train during the national team’s offseason. “It’s like baseball here in America,” Scherer said. “They have minor league teams for amateurs, and the goal is to work your way up to the professional level.” Scherer made a team in a small town of Hazebrouck, France. However, complicated visa requirements, combined with her little grasp of the French language, led her to opt to pass on the offer to play there. She is still remaining active in finding another professional team to join, she said. “I’m trying to go to a training camp in Hungary at the end of the summer and hope to make some connections there for other possible teams to play with,” Scherer said.Currently, Scherer is living at home in Canton, where she is working to use her animal science degree by applying for jobs in the field. The Buckeye trains in her spare time, both in Canton and at OSU, in order to stay fit for the upcoming handball season.Beyond that, Scherer is working hard to find ways to implement team handball in high schools on the state and national levels. This is an attempt to have others gain knowledge of and passion for the sport, just like Scherer developed. “After that one year down in Alabama, I realized how much I loved (the sport),” Scherer said. “Now I’ve shaped the rest of my life around handball and what (Team USA) is trying to do.” read more