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Despite crisis, Muskegon’s Tony Ferguson may still get his shot at UFC title,Former Oakridge star Sophia Wiard learned a lot in first season at University of Toledo

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first_img0 Not relevant $20.00$233.61 Ads by Amazon Displayed poorly By Nich WolakLocalSportsJournal.comMUSKEGON – The sports world has come to a halt with the outbreak of COVID-19.Even Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) President Dana White gave in to the realities of the ever-changing landscape, postponing events scheduled for March 21, March 28 and April 11.Tony Ferguson talks to the press after fighting Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone back on June 8 in Chicago. Photo/Nich WolakBut there is one fight White refuses to postpone or cancel – Muskegon’s Tony Ferguson versus Russia’s Khabib Nurmagomedov for the lightweight championship (155 pounds). “Khabib and Tony is going to happen,” White said last week in an interview with TSN, a major sports channel in Canada. “We’re going to figure that out. We’re going to make it happen. It’s just going to be a matter of how quickly we can get back to being normal.”The bout, originally scheduled to be held at the Barclay Center in Brooklyn, New York on April 18, will be moved to an alternate location. Media speculation has been that the fight card will switch to an international site, with Middle Eastern cities Abu Dhabi and Dubai being prime candidates.Nurmagomedov, a practicing Muslim, is a fan favorite in the region. Part of the UFC’s insistence on keeping the event on the schedule may be due to the elusive nature of the matchup. Ferguson and Nurmagomedov have been scheduled to fight four other times, but health issues for both (ribs and a bad weight cut for Nurmagomedov, blood and fluid in the lungs and a torn lateral collateral ligament (LCL) for Ferguson) prevented a meeting.Muskegon’s Tony Ferguson (left) squares up with Donald Cerrone (far right) during their weigh-in on Friday, June 7. Photo/Nich WolakFerguson has felt the UFC gold around his waist before. He won an interim belt in 2017 – interim belts act as a placeholder of sorts when the champion is inactive – but was stripped of it due to the LCL injury. Ferguson, the No. 1 contender with a career record of 25-3, is riding a 12-fight winning streak. He is coming off a TKO of Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone on June 8, 2019. Nurmagomedov (28-0) last defended his belt on Sept. 7, 2019, defeating Dustin “Diamond” Poirier. Like many professional fighters, particularly Americans, Ferguson has a wrestling background. He earned all-state status three times at Muskegon Catholic Central High School, winning a state title at 152 pounds in 2002, his senior season. He went on to wrestle at Grand Valley State University, capturing a National Collegiate Wrestling Association championship in 2006 at 165 pounds. Ferguson began training for MMA in California at the end of his collegiate wrestling career, with his first professional fight taking place in 2008. He accrued a 10-2 record in smaller organizations prior to his time in the UFC.  Ferguson broke into the world’s premiere MMA organization in 2011 by winning its reality television show, The Ultimate Fighter (TUF). In TUF, MMA competitors live in a house together. The fighters break into teams for training, but fight individually to try to earn the tournament title. The winner gets a guaranteed six-figure contract with the company. Report a problem This item is… (32825) $14.99 Thank you! This will help us improve your ad experience. We will try not to show you such ads again. Inappropriate / Offensive Inappropriate / Offensive Thank you! This will help us improve your ad experience. We will try not to show you such ads again. Inappropriate / Offensive × DEAL OF THE DAY Add Comments (Max 320 characters) NBC Sports Add Comments (Max 320 characters) Nuun Sport: Electrolyte Drink Tablets, Citru… Not relevant Bestseller ENDS IN (35309) ENDS IN Thank you! 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Liam O’Meara and Mr Coolcaum (ISH) take runner-up spot in Millstreet Grand Prix

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first_img Liam O’Meara and Mr Coolcaum (ISH) take runner-up spot in Millstreet Grand Prix Tipperary’s Liam O’Meara finished best of the Irish in today’s three-star international Grand Prix at the Green Glens arena in Millstreet, Co Cork, where riders from Ireland filled three of the top four placesNenagh-based O’Meara guided the 12-year-old Irish Sport Horse Mr Coolcaum to runner-up spot on the podium, after a double clear round in 58.63 seconds. Edward Butler slotted into second with the stallion Cornet Son, while Jessica Burke and Dermish Cruise (ISH) came home in fourth.Victory however eluded the Irish, with Britain’s Laura Renwick partnering the nine-year-old gelding Heliodor Hybris to the winning double clear in 56.34. Tags: Home  »  General  »  Liam O’Meara and Mr Coolcaum (ISH) take runner-up spot in Millstreet Grand Prix 14 August 2016, 18:30last_img read more

Weekend negotiating window doesn’t amount to much in NFL free agency

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first_imgThough most attention remains on the official start of free agency at 4 p.m. Tuesday, NFL teams were allowed to begin contacting and entering into negotiations with the agents of pending outside free agents at noon on Saturday.The NFL has made it clear that a contract cannot be executed with a new team prior to the start of the new league year on Tuesday afternoon in fear of leaks to the media occurring over the weekend, but all this three-day window really does is provide a ceremonial tampering period that’s already existed for the last several weeks.During this negotiating window, prospective free agents may not visit a club at its permanent facility — or any other location — and may not have any direct contact with an employee or representative of the organization. Only certified agents are officially permitted to communicate with outside teams, but the truth is these discussions have been ongoing, with last month’s NFL scouting combine in Indianapolis long considered a haven for free-agent tampering.How else do you explain a number of blockbuster deals being announced in the first hour — or opening minutes — of free agency in past years?In reality, outside teams have already inquired about the likes of upper-tier free agents such as Ravens left tackle Eugene Monroe and defensive tackle Arthur Jones just like general manager Ozzie Newsome and the Baltimore front office have slyly looked into outside free agents that could be a good fit for their 2014 roster. The three-day window set up by the league is merely a perception mechanism to help explain why a top free agent potentially has a new contract and a new team by 4:01 p.m. on Tuesday.The negotiating window is only designed for unrestricted free agents and does not allow teams to reach out to franchise or transition tag players, restricted free agents, and exclusive-rights free agents. Of course, any free agents who were released earlier this offseason such as linebacker Jameel McClain and fullback Vonta Leach are already free to sign with other teams.Here is the press release that was published by the NFL regarding free agency earlier this week:Q. When does the 2014 free agency signing period begin?A. At 4:00 p.m. ET on Tuesday, March 11.Q. What is permitted during the three-day negotiating period prior to the start of free agency?A. Beginning at 12:00 noon ET on Saturday, March 8 and ending at 3:59:59 p.m. ET on Tuesday, March 11, clubs are permitted to contact, and enter into negotiations with, the certified agents of players who will become Unrestricted Free Agents upon the expiration of their 2013 player contracts at 4:00 p.m. ET on March 11. However, a contract cannot be executed with a new club until 4:00 p.m. ET on March 11.During this negotiation period, a prospective unrestricted free agent cannot visit a club (other than the player’s current club) at its permanent facility or at any other location, and no direct contact is permitted between the player and any employee or representative of a club (other than the player’s current club). If a player is self-represented, clubs are prohibited from discussions with the player during the negotiating period.Clubs (other than the player’s current club) may not discuss or make any travel arrangements with prospective unrestricted free agent players, their certified agents, or anyone else associated with the player until the expiration of those players’ 2013 Player Contracts at 4:00 p.m. ET on March 11.The three-day negotiating period applies only to potential unrestricted free agents; it does not apply to players who are potential Exclusive Rights Players or Restricted Free Agents, or to players who have been designated as Franchise Players or Transition Players.Q. What are the categories of free agency?A. Players are either “Restricted Free Agents” or “Unrestricted Free Agents.” A Restricted Free Agent may be subject to a qualifying offer. A Restricted or Unrestricted Free Agent may be designated by his prior club as its Franchise Player or Transition Player.Q. What is the time period for free agency signings this year?A. For Restricted Free Agents, from March 11 to May 2. For Unrestricted Free Agents who have received the June 1 tender from their prior club, from March 11 to July 22 (or the first scheduled day of the first NFL training camp, whichever is later). For Franchise Players, from March 11 until the Tuesday following the 10th week of the regular season, November 11. For Transition Players, from March 11 until July 22. If the above-listed players do not sign by November 11, they must sit out the season.Q. What is the difference between a Restricted Free Agent and an Unrestricted Free Agent?A. In the 2014 League Year, players with three accrued seasons become Restricted Free Agents when their contracts expire at the conclusion of the 2013 League Year. Unrestricted Free Agents have completed four or more accrued seasons. An Unrestricted Free Agent is free to sign with any club with no draft choice compensation owed to his old club.Q. What constitutes an “Accrued Season”?A. Six or more regular-season games on a club’s active/inactive, reserved/injured or reserve/physically unable to perform lists.Q. What could restrict the ability of a Restricted Free Agent to sign with a new club?A. If he has received a “qualifying offer” (a salary tender predetermined by the Collective Bargaining Agreement between the league and its players) from his old club. He can negotiate with any club through May 2. If the Restricted Free Agent signs an offer sheet with a new club, his old club can match the offer and retain him because the qualifying offer entitles it to a “right of first refusal” on any offer sheet the player signs. If the old club does not match the offer, it may receive draft choice compensation depending on the amount of its qualifying offer. If an offer sheet is not executed on or before May 2, the player’s negotiating rights revert exclusively to his old club. In addition, a player who would otherwise be a Restricted Free Agent may be designated by his old club as its Franchise Player or Transition Player. No Restricted Free Agents were designated as Franchise or Transition players this year.Q. What determines an Unrestricted Free Agent?A. A player with four or more accrued seasons whose contract has expired. He is free to sign with any club, with no draft choice compensation owed to his old club, through July 22 (or the first scheduled day of the first NFL training camp, whichever is later). At that point, his negotiating rights revert exclusively to his old club if by June 1 the old club tendered the player a one-year contract for 110 percent of his prior year’s salary. His old club then has until the Tuesday following the 10th week of the regular season (November 11) to sign him. If he does not sign by that date, he must sit out the season. If no tender is offered by June 1, the player can be signed by any club at any time throughout the season.Q. What determines a Franchise Player?A. The salary offer by a player’s club determines what type of franchise player he is: exclusive or non-exclusive.An “exclusive” Franchise Player – not free to sign with another club – is offered the greater of (i) the average of the top five salaries at the player’s position for the current year as of the end of the restricted free agent signing period on May 2; or (ii) the amount of the required tender for a non-exclusive franchise player, as explained below.Article 10, Section 2(a)(i) of the CBA sets forth the methodology, known as the “Cap Percentage Average,” for calculating the required tender for such a player:The Nonexclusive Franchise Tender shall be a one year NFL Player Contract for (A) the average of the five largest Prior Year Salaries for players at the position . . . at which the Franchise Player participated in the most plays during the prior League Year, which average shall be calculated by: (1) summing the amounts of the Franchise Tags for players at that position for the five preceding League Years; (2) dividing the resulting amount by the sum of the Salary Caps for the five preceding League Years . . . ; and (3) multiplying the resulting percentage by the Salary Cap for the upcoming League Year . . . (the “Cap Percentage Average”) . . . ; or (B) 120% of his Prior Year Salary, whichever is greater . . . .If a club extends a required tender to a “non-exclusive” Franchise Player pursuant to this section, the player shall be permitted to negotiate a player contract with any club, except that draft choice compensation of two first-round draft selections shall be made in the event he signs with a new club.Q. How many Franchise Players and Transition Players can a team designate each season?A. A club can designate one “Franchise” Player or one “Transition” Player among its potential restricted or unrestricted free agents.Q. Can a club decide to withdraw its Franchise or Transition designations on a player?A. Yes. A club can withdraw its Franchise or Transition designation, and the player then automatically becomes an unrestricted free agent, either immediately or when his contract expires.Q. What is the salary cap for 2014?A. The salary cap is $133,000,000 per club.Q. When must teams be in compliance with the cap?A. At the start of the 2014 League Year, which begins at 4:00 p.m. ET on March 11.Q. If a team is under the salary cap at the end of a given season, can the team carry over room to the next season?A. Yes. A team may “carry over” room from one League Year to the following League Year by submitting notice to the NFL prior to 4:00 p.m. ET on the day before the team’s final regular-season game indicating the maximum amount of room that the club wishes to carry over.Q. What is the maximum amount of room that a club can carry over?A. One hundred percent of its remaining room.last_img read more

Spain Turns to Science for Stimulus

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first_imgSpain’s economy is in trouble. The country’s real-estate bubble has collapsed and its unemployment rate is 20%. Can science provide a way out? That’s the hope of the country’s ministers, who today approved the text of a new research law that aims to reward scientific talent and encourage entrepreneurship, according to local Spanish-language reports. The law still needs to be approved by Spain’s parliament. But Science and Innovation Minister Cristina Garmendia told reporters that scientific reforms could provide “a new model” for Spain’s troubled economy based on innovation. Among other steps, the law would create a new Spanish Research Agency to oversee spending and encourage the private sector to take on a larger share of R&D, something Garmendia says has been lacking in recent decades. 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The country ranks nineth in the world in number of papers published, but only 20th in impact, according to a Spanish report. “We demand a law that will let us get to the level of the Nobel Prize,” said Joan Guinovart, president of the Confederation of Spanish Scientific Societies (COSCE), which represents about 30,000 researchers. The confederation released a statement in Spanish criticizing the law as largely ineffective. Mr. Guinovart told El Mundo that the law “doesn’t provide solutions to the real problems” of Spanish science, which researchers say favors seniority over talent, in part by doling out automatic promotions. According to one joke making the rounds: “A messenger arrives in your office and 20 years later he becomes a professor.” Spain’s government says the new Science, Technology and Innovation law would address problems facing researchers, for instance by making it easier to move between universities or leave to start companies. Garmendia said in a press conference today that the law will also do away with the public-sector grants for graduate students, and replace them with contractual arrangements that include unemployment benefits. “Where before there were grants, now we’ll have contracts,” the minister said. Spain is also fretting over losing scientific talent, such as noted Spanish oncologist Josep Baselga, who this week confirmed that he would become chief of the hematology and oncology division and associate director of the Massachusetts General Hospital cancer center in Boston. To stem brain drain, the new law calls for special “distinguished investigator contracts” for recruiting foreign researchers. Garmendia said that the “balance of attraction and retention of talent must be positive,” Spanish news agency ADN reported. Garmendia, a biologist and leading figure in Spain’s biotechnology industry, was appointed head of Spain’s newly created Science and Innovation ministry in 2008. She quickly drew criticism for overseeing a sharp cut in Spain’s science budget. Spain’s science spending totals about 1.35% of GDP and lags behind European neighbors, according to Guinovart’s organization. Spain’s science ambitions suffered another blow this month when the European Southern Observatory recommended construction of a new giant telescope in Chile. Spain had bid for a location on the island of La Palma.last_img read more