Hurricane Maria: ‘Attracting Capital to Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority Is More Critical Than Ever’

first_imgHurricane Maria: ‘Attracting Capital to Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority Is More Critical Than Ever’ FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Washington Post:Hurricane Maria has dealt a new blow to Puerto Rico’s bankrupt electric company — knocking out power for the entire island and imposing costly repair burdens on a utility that was already struggling with more than $9 billion in debt, poor service and sky-high rates.And that means more hardship for local residents and businesses, whose electric rates are already more than twice the national average.Even before it was hit by Irma and now Maria, the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority said it needed more than $4 billion to overhaul its outdated power plants and reduce its heavy reliance on imported oil. The company filed, in effect, for bankruptcy July 2.Now, with Maria toppling transmission lines and 100 percent of Puerto Ricans without electricity, PREPA faces millions of dollars more for hurricane repairs.The utility’s struggles are a key part of the commonwealth’s struggles to restructure about $74 billion in debts, overhaul its economy and stem the outflow of Puerto Rican citizens to the U.S. mainland.“PREPA and electricity here have always been critical to economic recovery,” said Natalie Jaresko, a veteran banker, former finance minister in Ukraine and adviser to the Puerto Rican government. “What the hurricane is proving is that that infrastructure is fragile. It makes attracting capital to PREPA more critical than ever.”More: Hurricane Maria has dealt a heavy blow to Puerto Rico’s bankrupt utility and fragile electric gridlast_img read more

Romance in the Backcountry: Tips and Tricks

first_imgBen and I have lived in a van for seven months now. Purposeful romance is usually last on the list of things we make time for, right after vacuuming our carpet and cleaning the bugs off the front bumper. Living in a van can really put a damper on the romance. Ben doesn’t fit lengthwise in the van, so he sleeps diagonally and I sleep in a corner. We go days, sometimes weeks, without a real shower. We have so many cuts and bruises and bug bites that shaving would be laughable. But somehow we still wake up each morning and say “I love you.”This did not come easily. We’ve had super low moments, where Ben has hiked in one direction, and I in the other. But for the most part, we’ve become a well-oiled machine, able to predict movements before they happen. I plug his phone in before he reaches for the cord, he sets my slippers below the bed before I lift my head from the pillow. We share romance in a different way when living in such close quarters, and in the backcountry. Here are a few suggestions for van living and backcountry hiking to help you and your sig-other adjust more quickly than we did!Bagged wine, boxed wine, doesn’t matter, just bring it.Whether you’re hiking 15 miles to your camp spot, or you are parked on the side of the road after a long drive, DO NOT forgo wine. It is essential and COMPLETELY worth packing in on long backpacks or taking up space in your tiny van. If you don’t have a half-drunken bag of wine laying around right before you set off on your trip, consider buying these. They pack down once you drink them, and are the perfect serving size at the end of a long hike day. While you’re at it, don’t forget dessert.ProTip: Bears LOVE wine. Almost more than I do. Don’t forget to pack your empty wine carriers in a smell proof bags or bear bin.Zip your sleeping bags together, just don’t forget to wear long pajamas.This applies to sleeping in the van, and also in the backcountry. A lot of brands make compatible gender specific bags, meaning the men’s zips along the left and the woman’s on the right.  You can completely unzip them individually and then zip them back together so you have one huge sleeping bag to cuddle in. This is great for me because I am the perma-big spoon. With the bags zipped together, we can cuddle all night! Make sure to strap your sleeping mats together so there’s no cold hard spot between the two sleeping bags.  You MUST wear long pajamas, nothing kills romance faster than sticking to the person you’re sleeping next to. Whether you’re in a van and five days out from your last shower, or a zipped together sleeping bag after a sweaty uphill slog, cover your gross, unshowered skin, and cuddle away.Pro Tip: On extra cold nights in the backcountry, make sure the area of the sleeping bag between your heads is closed so no heat can escape through space between.Skinny dip to get the hot spots.If you have the ability to get in a large body of water, DO IT! It saves you from being a sticky mess and having to wear long pajamas at night (see above). When you’re backpacking, it might be the most refreshing thing you can do. All you really need to clean is the ‘hot spots.’ Everything else is icing on the cake, and completely unnecessary. When you’re van’ing, try a solar shower if a large body of water is inaccessible or too crowded. If water isn’t available, wilderness wipes are the next best thing. And remember- hot spots!Pro Tip: There is no good way to travel with a full solar shower. Put it inside and it will absolutely spill. Leave it on a trailer or secured to the top of your van and SOMETHING will puncture it. Take it from the five solar shower fatalities we’ve had, a full solar shower is a dangerous thing.But seriously, kind words.This is the cheapest, and most effective way, to keep the romance alive when living in a van or hiking with your honey in the backcountry. There is no trick here, simply expressing your love and reminding each other you appreciate the small things they’re doing (carrying the wine so I don’t have to, and then letting me drink more than my fair share- you’re the best Ben)!  You can try yelling encouragement to each other when you’re halfway up a mountain pass. Kind words can go a REALLY long way, especially when your pack feels like it’s getting heavier even though you’ve already consumed the chocolate you stashed in there just in case. Those are the times when it is most important. Especially because the chocolate is gone.Pro Tip: Kind words obviously help for us, but people communicate love in totally different ways, check out the five love languages if you haven’t already. Maybe your sweetheart would feel the romance most if you secretly stashed some chocolate for them and pulled it out at the right exact moment on that uphill climb. Okay– that works for me too.There are a few items that make romance in the backcountry a little easier. Check out this list from Elevation Outdoors for some more ideas!Ben and I finish our tour in one month and we can’t believe it’s coming to an end. We will have no idea what to do with a shower every day, food in a fridge, and sleeping in the same spot every night. If anyone has tips on how to do romance in a stationary house, we would love to hear them, because we have certainly forgotten how.If you like the gear we’re reppin’, or what we’re wearing, check out some of the sponsors that make this tour possible: La Sportiva, Crazy Creek, National Geographic, RovR Products, Sea to Summit, Mountain House, LifeStraw, and Lowe Alpine.last_img read more

Al-Baghdadi Profile

first_imgBy Ken Bredemeier / Voice of America October 31, 2019 For Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the high point of his life may have come in 2014, when he stood in a flowing black robe before worshippers in a mosque in Mosul, the northern Iraqi city the Islamic State had captured, and declared that he was the caliph, the political and religious leader of the global Muslim community.Other Muslim leaders rejected his claims, but his caliphate eventually covered as much as 40 percent of Iraq and a wide swath of northern Syria. It drew in thousands of foreign fighters to the Islamic State cause against Western and Middle Eastern allies in the region.In its self-declared capital of Raqqa, Syria, the Islamic State for a time administered its caliphate like a state, with a brutal, uncompromising system of Islamic justice, while it collected taxes and doled out public services.But Baghdadi, with a $25 million bounty on his head since 2016, was nowhere to be seen in public, save for an 18-minute video that was released last April.There were numerous reports over the last several years that he had been killed or seriously wounded in an array of U.S. and allied attacks throughout Iraq and northern Syria as the caliphate gradually collapsed. In June 2017, the Iraqi government declared it had recaptured Mosul from the Islamic State, and six months later declared complete victory in Iraq. By last March, the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces announced the liberation of Baghuz, the last Islamic State-held territory in Syria.Baghdadi resurfaced in audio tapes, often referencing recent events to prove he was alive. Otherwise, he hid, employing an array of techniques to avoid surveillance of his whereabouts. He did not use mobile phones, often moved from one safe house to another and shunned travel in convoys that might draw attention from allied forces in the region.But the U.S. hunt for him went on, culminating in the October 26 U.S. Special Forces raid in Syria in which Baghdadi detonated his suicide vest, killing himself and three children as the American commandos cornered him in a tunnel with no outlet.U.S. President Donald Trump announced the raid and Baghdadi’s death in a White House address and news conference, telling the world that Baghdadi’s demise came as he was “whimpering, crying and screaming all the way.” Within 15 minutes, in a field test, the U.S. said his DNA was confirmed.Baghdadi was born Ibrahim Awwad Ibrahim Al-Badri in 1971 in the Iraqi city of Samarra. He was the son of a Quranic teacher.He studied Quranic recitation at Saddam University for Islamic Studies in Baghdad and joined the Muslim Brotherhood, a pan-Arab movement based on establishing states buttressed by Islamic law that some governments have banned.News accounts and books have traced his radicalization back to the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq to topple Iraqi strong man Saddam Hussein. Baghdadi joined Sunni militias to fight the U.S. occupation. He was jailed at Camp Bucca in 2004.“Many of the 24,000 inmates at Bucca were Sunni Arabs who had served in Saddam’s military and intelligence services,” said a 2015 report by the Brookings Institution think tank in Washington D.C. “When Saddam fell, so did they, a consequence of the American purge of the Baathists and the new ascendency of Iraq’s long-oppressed Shiite majority. If they weren’t jihadists when they arrived, many of them were by the time they left.”“Baghdadi would turn out to be the most explosive of those flames,” it said, “a man responsible for much of the conflagration that would engulf the region less than a decade later.”When Baghdadi was released, he had a means for reconnecting with his fellow prisoners: they had written each others’ phone numbers in the elastic of their underwear.He established ties with al-Qaida in Iraq but many of the Bucca inmates would go on to become leading figures in an offshoot, the Islamic State in Iraq, and Baghdadi became its head in 2010 when leaders of the group were killed in an air strike.A year later, he expanded the group into Syria as it seized more and more territory, including Raqqa and eventually Mosul in 2014, where he gave his only televised speech in the city’s Grand Mosque. He spoke to Islamic State supporters in 2015, 2016 and 2017 in audio messages.His final audio admonition to Islamic State adherents was in September 2019.last_img read more

Petrachi confirms interest in Man Utd defender

first_img Promoted ContentThe Highest Paid Football Players In The World2020 Tattoo Trends: Here’s What You’ll See This YearNothing Compares To Stargazing Places Around The World10 Risky Jobs Some Women DoTop 10 Most Populated Cities In The World5 Of The World’s Most Unique Theme Parks11 Most Immersive Game To Play On Your Table TopThe Models Of Paintings Whom The Artists Were Madly In Love With6 Incredibly Strange Facts About HurricanesTop Tastiest Foods From All Over The WorldA Hurricane Can Be As Powerful As 10 Atomic BombsWho Is The Most Powerful Woman On Earth? Loading… Roma sporting director, Gianluca Petrachi, has admitted that they would like to buy Manchester United defender, Chris Smalling on-loan out-rightly. So impressed is he by the 30-year-old, he hopes Smalling will choose to make his move to Italy a permanent one in the summer. “There is a chance,” Petrachi told the Daily Mail. “The player will choose what to do. If he really wishes, we will be happy to have him with us permanently. “We are very happy with Smalling and he knows it. “With Manchester United, the relationship is excellent, we have an excellent feeling with the club.”Advertisement Petrachi added: “He loves Rome and the Italian lifestyle. “I think it’s obvious how it sounds: it’s finally peaceful. Smalling finds himself very well in Rome, lives well and has returned to great levels. “He follows an Italian course to improve his grasp of the language. This made me very happy because it shows that the boy is intelligent. Read Also:West Ham bid for Roma midfielder Steven Nzonzi “Technically he is very strong. I think it is fundamental for a sporting director to understand how some players can do well. I thought this move could work and I’m happy that the results prove me right.” FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmail分享 last_img read more

‘Shabu,’ firearm seized in buy-bust

first_imgBACOLOD City – Five sachets of suspected shabu valued at around P6,800 were seized in a buy-bust operation in Barangay 1, San Carlos City, Negros Occidental. The 34-year-old resident Rogelio Mag-aso Jr. yielded the suspected illegal drugs, a police report showed. Mag-aso was nabbed after he sold suspected shabu to an undercover cop for P500 around 9 a.m. on July 14, it added. The suspect was detained in the custodial facility of the San Carlos City police station, facing charges./PN When frisked, Mag-aso also yielded a .45-caliber pistol loaded with four live bullets.last_img read more

Neymar returns to Paris for UCL, cup finals

first_imgRelatedPosts Neymar bags two-match ban Neymar risks seven-game ban, Gonzalez 10 Neymar, four others sent off as Marseille grab rare win at PSG Neymar has returned to Paris after three months in Brazil ahead of Paris Saint-Germain’s planned return to training on June 22.PSG were crowned French champions for the third successive season after the Ligue 1 campaign was cut short, but they are looking to prepare for two domestic cup finals and the potential return of the Champions League. Thomas Tuchel’s side qualified for the quarter-finals after beating Borussia Dortmund 3-2 on aggregate, with their 2-0 home victory on March 11 being one of the last top-level games played in Europe before lockdown.Neymar went home to Brazil four days after that game as lockdown restrictions were introduced in France.Now he has followed advice from PSG to return to France before June 15 in order to avoid a potential two-week quarantine.European countries could review their conditions for entering the country from that date.It has been widely reported that Brazil has now passed the United Kingdom to record the second-highest coronavirus death toll in the world, and arrivals from badly-hit countries are likely to face stricter restrictions if policy changes are made in France. PSG have a number of South American players in their ranks, many of whom returned home when lockdown began.Edinson Cavani, Keylor Navas and captain Thiago Silva are all expected to return to France before Tuesday, with Marquinhos having already done so.Despite the disappointment of the league campaign being curtailed, PSG are still hopeful of securing a historic quadruple this season.They are set to face Saint-Etienne in the Coupe de France final, as well as playing Lyon in the final of the Coupe de la Ligue.Neither match has a confirmed date at this point. Meanwhile, plans are still being put together to try and finish the Champions League.PSG qualified for the quarter-finals alongside RB Leipzig, Atletico Madrid and Atalanta.The remaining last-16 ties between Real Madrid and Manchester City, Chelsea and Bayern Munich, Lyon and Juventus as well as Napoli and Barcelona are all yet to be completed.Tags: Borussia DortmundLockdownNeymarParis St. GermainThomas Tuchellast_img read more

Man shoots at store employee after being asked to wear a mask

first_imgA Pennsylvania man has been arrested after he reportedly fired his gun at an employee of a cigar shop after the employee asked him to wear a face mask.The incident occurred Friday at  Cigars international in Bethlehem Township.Authorities say 35-year-old Adam Michael Zaborowski entered the shop while not wearing a mask and was told by employees that he could either put on a mask or use their curbside service.Zaborowski then reportedly “became irate, grabbed two cigars from a shelf and exited without paying,” according to sources.A store employee then followed Zaborokwski to his car to retrieve the merchandise when Zaborokwski fired his gun once in the air and then fired two shots at the employee.Thankfully the employee and a patron that was standing behind the employee were not injured in the shooting.Zaborokwski then fled the scene in his blue Dodge Dakota. He was then taken into custody the following day after engaging in a shootout with Pennsylvania State Police and Slatington Borough Police.According to the report, Zaborokwski has been hospitalized with undisclosed injuries. He is facing charges of attempted criminal homicide.last_img read more

MSOC : Long time coming: Former Syracuse standout Vuolo fulfills dream playing professional soccer

first_img Published on March 6, 2012 at 12:00 pm Contact Jacob: jmklinge@syr.edu | @Jacob_Klinger_ Comments It all started in front of a church.Jeremy Vuolo was 8 years old, playing soccer in front of the Reformed Baptist Church of Downingtown, Pa., when some neighborhood kids and their dad asked him to try out for Spirit United, a local travel team.Vuolo made the team the next weekend. When he was 12, Vuolo made up his mind — he wanted to be a pro.‘It’s all I wanted to do, never did anything else, never played any other sport, just wanted to play football or soccer all the time,’ Vuolo said.That decision set him on a globetrotting career path stretching from playing in the churchyard to starring in college at Syracuse and professionally in Finland and, finally, suiting up for the New York Red Bulls. Along the way, Vuolo underwent personal experiences that form the foundation for his career as he competes for a starting job in Major League Soccer.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textVuolo and the Red Bulls kick off the 2012 season Sunday against FC Dallas with a talent-packed roster expected to contend for its first MLS Cup.After four years under head coach Ian McIntyre at Hartwick College, Vuolo followed his coach to Syracuse in 2010. Though the Orange went 2-10-5, Vuolo made 79 saves in 16 appearances and was named the team’s MVP, garnering multiple professional offers.Vuolo was a three-year starter at Hartwick, where he was named Mid-American Conference Goalkeeper of the Year in 2009. But success did not come quickly for Vuolo.When Vuolo arrived at Hartwick in 2006, he admittedly had plenty of maturing to do. He competed for the starting spot his freshman year but ultimately redshirted. In his first player’s meeting with McIntyre, Vuolo pelted McIntyre with questions about the coach and the keeper starting ahead of him. Vuolo said he was blaming others for his lack of success.‘I remember Mac telling me to stop and just said, ‘Listen, we’re having a meeting about you, so we’re going to talk about you,” Vuolo said. ‘And that’s actually stuck with me for the years all the way leading up to now.’By the time Vuolo and McIntyre moved to Syracuse, the goalkeeper was a proven leader. Still, McIntyre told Vuolo he would have to earn the captain’s armband and prove himself to his new team. Vuolo quickly gained the trust of his teammates, hardly surprising McIntyre.‘His work ethic is second to none and so we knew that he’d have that right caliber personality in his ability to integrate with the other guys,’ McIntyre said.That work ethic made an impression on Jukka Masalin, an assistant at Hartwick before moving with McIntyre to Syracuse. The winter after Vuolo’s senior season, Masalin fished through his contacts in his native country of Finland.Masalin learned Juha Malinen, head coach of AC Oulu, needed a new starter between the posts. Vuolo arrived in Finland and quickly impressed Malinen enough to earn a contract offer.The goalkeeper also had offers from teams in the United Soccer League and MLS. It was a hard decision for Vuolo, so he sought some advice from former Hartwick and SU teammate Nick Roydhouse.‘(Vuolo) thought it was important to be going to a club and playing,’ Roydhouse said in an email to The Daily Orange. ‘It is difficult for such a young keeper to start straight away in the professional environment, and knew he would improve much quicker with solid minutes on the field, rather than sitting as a second keeper.’The everyday intensity of training for the long Finnish season meant that soccer was finally Vuolo’s job. Yet simply living in the Nordic country brought challenges of its own.When Vuolo took his first steps on Finnish soil it was minus 33 degrees Fahrenheit. During the team’s three-month preseason, the team trained inside twice a day while it was dark and freezing outside. There were days when Vuolo said he could not go outside with anything more than his eyes exposed.During the 2011 season, Vuolo turned in 11 shutouts in 24 of the team’s matches. AC Oulu exercised their option to bring Vuolo back for a second season.But Masalin recommended Vuolo to a former teammate, Juha Reini, who was working as a player representative in the United States. Reina began representing Vuolo and contacted Erik Solér, the general manager of the Red Bulls and Reina’s former agent.‘He picked him out as a client, and he had the connections here at Red Bulls already,’ Masalin said.In need of a goalkeeper, Solér asked Todd Hoffard, New York’s goalkeeper coach, about Vuolo. Hoffard called his former Hartwick teammate, McIntyre, to learn more about Vuolo’s day-to-day training habits.A long signing process ended with New York paying an undisclosed transfer fee to AC Oulu to sign Vuolo.In New York, Vuolo is shielded by Rafa Márquez, a former FC Barcelona defender who captained Mexico at the last three World Cups. And he faces shots from rising American talent such as Juan Agudelo.Facing top competition, Vuolo expects himself to be the hardest working player on the field. So far, he has lived up to that standard.Vuolo has impressed Hoffard with his drive and blue-collar work ethic, the same qualities that endeared him to his former coaches and teammates at Hartwick and Syracuse.‘(Vuolo) is the hardest working player I’ve ever been associated with,’ Roydhouse said. ‘He had a professional mentality well before he became a professional soccer player.’When the 12-year-old Vuolo made his decision to one day turn pro, he set off a career driven by constants in his mentality.That mentality carried him along every stop in his career. From his days as a disgruntled freshman at Hartwick to leading by example in Syracuse to Finland and back to New York, Vuolo was always working.With the Red Bulls, Vuolo is happy to be fighting for a starting spot with the league’s elite.‘It’s very professional, it’s very demanding and so I like it,’ Vuolo said. ‘I mean, I love it. I couldn’t be in a better environment.’jmklinge@syr.educenter_img Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

Football: Tale of two programs, Penn State, Wisconsin

first_imgWhile most people would argue that the two teams facing off in Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis Saturday for the Big Ten Championship are more similar than they are different, their routes to the big game were forged in very different lights.The No. 6 University of Wisconsin and No. 7 Penn State University football teams are two of the biggest surprises in college football. Both began the season unranked and both suffered two losses along the way, doing so with coaches who couldn’t make a headline if they lived their lives with a microphone at the hip.These two teams look like mirror images of each other to an outside fan — two hard-nosed defenses that couple with a strong running game and first-year quarterbacks at the helm. To those who have been around, watched their team reach the pinnacle of the toughest conference in college football, however, these teams are fighting to prove how different they really are.Football: Wisconsin remains at No. 6 in second-to-last College Football Playoff pollAfter the final results from rivalry weekend served the College Football Playoff Selection Committee its worst nightmare on a silver Read…The Wisconsin Badgers, a team that has struggled to pick a quarterback all season long, began the year with a top five matchup with Louisiana State University at Lambeau Field in Green Bay. The 16-14 slugfest win was such a shock to the college football landscape that it shot the Badgers all the way to No. 10 in the AP ranking and was the spark to the eventually firing of long-time LSU head coach Les Miles.After two wins that served as a warm up for one of the most brutal stretches in modern football history, Wisconsin beat down then-No. 8 Michigan State University on the road in what seemed like a season-defining moment for an overlooked squad in Wisconsin. The three week stretch that followed is what separates UW and PSU to the college football pundits, quality of losses.Head coach Paul Chryst and the Badgers traveled to Ann Arbor and lost a 4th quarter standoff, 14-7 to then-No. 4 Michigan University before losing an overtime heart-breaker to No. 2 Ohio State University under the lights of Camp Randall. While two back-to-back losses might knock out most contenders, the Badgers hit the grindstone and rattled off six straight wins in dominant fashion to reach the Big Ten title.Penn State, however, approaches Saturday on the flip side of the coin. The Nittany Lions began the season 2-2 with a blowout loss at Michigan and close defeat against Pitt, unable to notch their marquee win over Ohio State until week eight, seven days after the Buckeyes escaped Madison in overtime.After the departure of highly touted but sorely disappointing quarterback Christian Hackenberg, PSU head coach James Franklin had no doubts in picking redshirt sophomore Trace McSorley to be his main guy. McSorley, behind the play of the Big Ten’s top running back, Saquon Barkley, has led the 7th ranked Penn State team to an eight game winning streak and one of the most balanced offenses in the country over the last month of the season.A big part of Penn State’s run has come through the experienced play of McSorley as its offense sits atop the Big Ten in passing efficiency and has recorded only two interceptions all year. That mojo will certainly butt heads with Wisconsin, a defense that ranks third in-conference of passing efficiency defense and first in interceptions with 21.Video: Winning title of toughest conference in college football should get you in playoffs, Tom Oates says https://t.co/6UEZLWo5m0 pic.twitter.com/WY8EbpssCu— madison.com (@madisondotcom) December 1, 2016Despite the surprise of two formerly unranked teams in the most anticipated conference championship of the year, you would be remiss if you don’t acknowledge why these teams were so overlooked to begin the year.Wisconsin, one of the more consistent programs in the power-five conferences, has always been considered the brides-maid and never the bride. The Badgers have made the Big Ten Championship four of the six years it has existed, but are considered to be the lesser foe of Ohio State, Michigan State and Michigan from a lesser conference.Penn State, on the other hand, has been recovering from gutting sanctions a few seasons ago that left many thinking they wouldn’t return to notching winning seasons for at least a decade. The Nittany Lions have gone through three coaches since their sanctions and Franklin was widely considered to be on the hot seat before this season.This game is an accumulation of two teams that aren’t used to the spotlight and are looking to break into the national stage. Whether the winner makes the Playoff or not, a win in Lucas Oil over the weekend means more than just a conference championship. Fans of both teams try and argue who is the better team before the game even begins while no one really knows.Eight PSU writers all picked Nittany Lions. Eight Wisconsin writers all picked #Badgers. I guess we’re all homers. https://t.co/cXNkjNjr7U— Jesse Temple (@jessetemple) December 1, 2016Outside of the Buckeyes and an overtime win over then-No. 7 Nebraska, comparing these two squads over common opponents is simply splitting hairs. Both teams weren’t expected to be here and both want to prove why they are the undisputed Big Ten champion and deserve a spot in the College Football Playoff.While both teams are battling to win another game, it seems like they are really fighting over who is the most different from  what they were expected to do. When you take two teams hell bent on proving everyone else wrong, the feeling of loss is that much darker, but, the feeling of winning, is that much sweeter.last_img read more

Basketball: A day in the life of a UW basketball hopeful

first_imgThree minutes. That’s essentially what about 50 guys went through hell and back for last Wednesday night when they flooded the Nicholas Johnson Pavilion to try out for a walk-on spot on the Wisconsin Badgers Men’s Basketball Team. I was one of them.The three minutes I’m referring to is how much playing time Jackson Bax, who made the team back in 2015, got in total between games against Sienna, Rutgers and Michigan.But I couldn’t resist. I needed to see if I have what it takes to be an NCAA Division I athlete. And now at least I can confirm what my friends told me all week: I do not.As the day drew closer, my expectations grew larger. You know that feeling when you know something’s not going to happen to you, but you fantasize as if it will anyways? That was me thinking about getting one of those grey Under Armour backpacks, getting access to the training facilities and maybe — just maybe — clocking in a few minutes against a Big Ten rival.When Sept. 25 finally arrived, it was hard to think about anything other than the tryout. I even skipped my Astronomy 104 lecture, literally for no reason at all, because I couldn’t get my mind off it. Sorry, Professor Marche.Men’s Basketball: Changing of the Gard, Carlson and Crowl bring massive talent boostTwin Cities native Ben Carlson verbally committed to the University of Wisconsin men’s basketball team Wednesday afternoon. In-state recruiting has Read…Walking into the Nicholas Johnson Pavilion — the Badgers practice arena — the first thing I saw was massive posters of every active player on the back wall. I’m sure the thought I had was the same as everyone else: “Make room for me.”The same thoughts raced through my mind as the assistant coaches, players and then the man everyone was there to impress, Head Coach Greg Gard, came onto the court.Some were throwing down tomahawk dunks, some were trying to discreetly only dribble with their right hand. But it was clear from the start, everyone was there to work hard and — even if they didn’t make the team — experience something not a lot of people get to at a big school like University of Wisconsin.Lefty Pendarakis, a freshman here at UW, was one of many there to show off his talents.“I played basketball all four years in high school, and play pretty often here at the Shell, so I figured I’d at least show up and try,” Pendarakis said.When I asked him about his favorite Badgers, he named off Frank Kaminsky and Sam Dekker, citing his attendance at one of the Final Four games back in 2015 as a reason why.Men’s Basketball: Wisconsin searches for new identity post-HappThe University of Wisconsin men’s basketball team ended last season disappointingly in the first round of the NCAA Tournament, losing Read…Moments like those, even as the last man off the bench, is what everyone was fighting to be a part of. And any of the 50-something guys there would have ran through a brick wall if it meant they got picked.That intensity came to a head the moment drills started, which included a 3-man weave, dribble pull-ups, coming off screens and some other basic workouts. It was clear that not many people had done a full-speed basketball workout in years, not to mention at the speed these coaches were used to seeing.We were all struggling to catch our breath, and that’s right when Assistant Coach Alando Tucker, who also has the record for most points ever scored by a Badger, got five-on-fives going.After we got broken up into teams, we started “king of the court.” If you don’t know what that means, it’s a system where if you win on Court 3, you move up to Court 2. If you win there, you move to the “King’s Court,” where you play the team that just won, and therefore got to stay. If you lose on the King’s Court, you go all the way back to Court 3.The King’s Court is where all the coaches are, watching the best of the best battle it out for a roster spot. Humblebrag here — our team did win a game on the King’s Court, only to be bounced in the next one.King of the court went on for a good 45 minutes, until Coach Tucker — who was essentially in charge of the tryout along with assistant Dean Oliver — listed off ten guys they wanted to get a better look at in one final game.Men’s basketball: Tournament disappointment, Ethan Happ’s departure present Wisconsin with opportunity for extreme makeoverFriday, March 22 was an overwhelming day for the University of Wisconsin men’s basketball program. The Badgers’ 72–54 loss at Read…To my shock and delight, Tucker said my name.Just kidding.While the actual final ten battled it out for the walk-on spot, I asked Tucker about what they’re looking for, and what that person can expect as a member of the team.“We’re looking for somebody that actually has a little experience playing, and can step in day one and challenge the guys on this team,” Tucker said. “They need to embody the Wisconsin idea by being a great student and a leader in the community. It’s a commitment. You have to balance it with school. Whoever’s chosen is going to have to sacrifice nights out with friends. It’s about dedication.”Tucker didn’t tell me who the newest member of the Wisconsin Badgers was going to be, so maybe there’s still a chance for me. If I am picked, it’ll be a sad day for Aleem Ford, because I want No. 2.last_img read more