Andy Murray Wins Gold By Doing What He Couldnt

WIMBLEDON, England — Andy Murray stood with the Union Jack draped over his shoulders, an Olympic gold medal around his neck, flanked by the man he had just beaten, Roger Federer, and basking in the roar of the Centre Court crowd.No wonder the often dour Scotsman was grinning.Murray won one for the home team Sunday, beating Federer 6-2, 6-1, 6-4 in the tennis final at Wimbledon.The victory marked a career breakthrough for Murray. He has lost all four of his Grand Slam finals, three against Federer, including Wimbledon a month ago.“It has been the best week of my tennis career by a mile,” Murray said. “I’ve had a lot of tough losses. This is the best way to come back from the Wimbledon final. I’ll never forget it.”For Federer, the drubbing marked another Olympic disappointment. Playing in the Games for the fourth time, he sought a victory to complete a career Golden Slam but settled for silver — his first singles medal.“Don’t feel too bad for me,” Federer said. “I felt like I won my silver, I didn’t lose it. So I feel really happy.”Murray swept nine consecutive games to take control, breaking Federer’s serve four times in a row, his inspired play a reflection of raucous crowd support. He erased all nine break points he faced.“He never looked back,” Federer said. “His credit for getting in the lead and using the crowd to come through. He did an unbelievable job.”The match capped the most memorable Olympics for tennis since it returned to the Games in 1988 after a 64-year absence. The event transformed staid Wimbledon into a more festive place.Murray became the first British man to win the gold in singles since Josiah Ritchie in 1908. Those games took place at Wimbledon, too.Read more: ESPN read more

The 10 Games That Shaped The NFL Playoff Picture The Most

Detroit72100+28 Denver4139-2 Green Bay70%100%+30 PLAYOFF CHANCES PLAYOFF CHANCES Washington37%51%+14 Houston44%74%+30 3. Tennessee 13, Denver 10 (Week 14) The most important game of the year came in Week 17, even though one of the teams — the New York Giants — had absolutely nothing to play for. Washington’s loss ended its playoff hopes and rendered the highly anticipated Green Bay-Detroit evening matchup mostly moot by guaranteeing playoff spots for both the Packers and Lions. Tennessee11%25%+14 After a tedious Week 17, the NFL playoff picture is finally set. Every week since Week 12, we’ve looked at which games could have the biggest impact on postseason chances throughout the league. Now, instead of dealing with hypotheticals, we can look backward to see which results from the entire 2016 regular season actually affected the playoff race the most.This is pretty easy to measure. Our NFL predictions update after every game, so the most important games are simply the ones that caused the largest net change in playoff probabilities. For example, when Buffalo beat Los Angeles in Week 5, the Bills’ playoff chances immediately improved from 50 percent to 64 percent (+14) while the Rams’ dropped from 49 percent to 34 percent (-14, with rounding). That’s a net change of 28 points. If we add to that number the impact the Bill’s victory had on Arizona, Seattle, New England and Oakland and its minor impacts on every other team in the league, we get an overall playoff swing of 57 points for that game.1The playoff swing totals in this article are lower than what we had listed in previous weeks. That’s because the scale has changed a bit, now that we’re measuring based on one actual game outcome instead of two potential game outcomes. An example: Going into their Week 17 matchup against New York, Washington had a 58 percent chance of making the playoffs. It would be eliminated with a loss and would more or less clinch with a win, so the team’s total potential range of outcomes, which we called its swing, was zero to 100 percent, or 100 percentage points. But Washington lost that game, so its actual, non-potential swing was from 58 percent to zero, or 58 percentage points.By this measure, the 10 biggest games of the regular season are below. Note that some of these results didn’t actually “matter” in the end. Going back to the example above: Buffalo didn’t make the postseason. But that game did make a significant impact on the playoff race at the time, so it was still important to the arc of the season. Miami55%92%+38 Game had 75.9 total “swing” points; only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome are shown AFFECTED TEAMBEFORE GAMEAFTER GAMECHANGE Detroit4650+4 Pittsburgh was an early favorite to make the playoffs, with a 62 percent preseason chance of advancing to the postseason that improved to 90 percent after a 4-1 start. But then the Steelers lost four straight, dropping down to 16th in our rankings, which are based on Elo ratings (a measure of team strength based on game results that we use quite a bit around here). They would go on to beat the Browns in Week 11, but this road victory against the Colts was when Pittsburgh really righted the ship. The Steelers closed the season with five more wins, easily making it to the postseason; they enter as the fourth-ranked team by Elo. Game had 58.5 total “swing” points; only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome are shown Dallas2623-3 Game had 76.0 total “swing” points; only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome are shown The game to watch for Week 16 was one of the best of the year. Buffalo came back from a 21-7 deficit, but the Dolphins hit a 55-yard field goal at the end of the fourth quarter to send the game into OT. Buffalo immediately drove 58 yards to Miami’s 17-yard line before moving backward 10 yards on two running plays and missing a 45-yarder. The Dolphins eventually won it on a chip shot field goal, sending their playoff chances skyrocketing to 92 percent at the expense of Denver and Baltimore. Washington1815-3 AFFECTED TEAMBEFORE GAMEAFTER GAMECHANGE Green Bay6269+6 Miami1626+11 Buffalo712+5 N.Y. Giants3429-4 AFFECTED TEAMBEFORE GAMEAFTER GAMECHANGE Philadelphia56%72%+16 AFFECTED TEAMBEFORE GAMEAFTER GAMECHANGE Denver7348-24 AFFECTED TEAMBEFORE GAMEAFTER GAMECHANGE Houston5855-3 Let’s take a moment to acknowledge Tennessee’s season. The Titans were one of the NFL’s worst teams in 2015 but rallied to go 9-7 this season, with a 5-2 record against eventual playoff teams. Their peak came in back-to-back wins against Denver (Week 14) and Kansas City (Week 15), giving them a serious shot at an AFC South title. Unfortunately, it was all for naught — the bad version of the Titans came out in Week 16 and lost 38-17 to the Jaguars, allowing the Texans to clinch the division. Tennessee’s victory over Denver did make a big difference for Miami, which eventually took the second AFC wild card spot. PLAYOFF CHANCES Houston7957-22 Based on the Cowboys’ terrible performance last season, our NFL predictions projected them to go 7-9 in 2016. And it took a little while for our model to figure out that Dallas was for real. This Week 6 drubbing of Green Bay improved the Cowboys’ record to 5-1 and sent their playoff chances shooting up 22 points to 78 percent; the suddenly struggling Packers saw an equivalent drop. Game had 57.2 total “swing” points; only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome are shown Remember Philadelphia? After a 3-0 start, capped by this shellacking of the highly rated Pittsburgh Steelers, the Eagles saw their playoff chances rise to over 70 percent. After a bye in Week 4, it was all downhill. Philadelphia went 2-9 over their next 11 games and were eliminated from playoff contention in Week 15. Game had 66.3 total “swing” points; only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome are shown Indianapolis11%21%+10 9. Philadelphia 34, Pittsburgh 3 (Week 3) Green Bay5434-20 The Texans ended the regular season with a 9-7 record, a -49 point differential and just the saddest kind of quarterback controversy (the kind where both quarterbacks are bad). So how did they find themselves in the playoffs, with room to spare? Houston’s secret weapon was a 5-1 record against its AFC South opponents, spoiled only by its final meaningless game against the Titans. Whenever Houston’s lead in its terrible division was challenged, the team rose to the occasion, getting a particularly large boost to its playoffs chances in this narrow victory over the Colts. Pittsburgh6870+2 4. Houston 22, Indianapolis 17 (Week 14) Pittsburgh55%71%+16 Indianapolis2311-12 5. Tennessee 19, Kansas City 17 (Week 15) Kansas City>9997-2 AFFECTED TEAMBEFORE GAMEAFTER GAMECHANGE N.Y. Giants4850+2 Houston7987+7 Baltimore3224-8 Game had 58.7 total “swing” points; only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome are shown PLAYOFF CHANCES Pittsburgh9388-5 Indianapolis73-4 1. N.Y. Giants 19, Washington 10 (Week 17) PLAYOFF CHANCES AFFECTED TEAMBEFORE GAMEAFTER GAMECHANGE PLAYOFF CHANCES After Green Bay’s late-season surge to make the playoffs (and the collapse of Washington and Tampa Bay), the Packers’ midseason foibles are all but forgotten. But they really almost blew it, going on a four-game losing streak that started at the end of October during which the Green Bay defense allowed 38 points per game and the team’s chances of making the playoffs dropped (at 4-6) to just 6 percent. This Week 9 loss to the Colts — the second loss in the streak — was one of the most damaging for Green Bay while simultaneously reviving Indianapolis’s hopes. Houston8682-5 2. Miami 34, Buffalo 31 (Week 16) Baltimore3841+3 6. Indianapolis 31, Green Bay 26 (Week 9) Houston5144-7 Cincinnati159-7 Baltimore2814-14 Washington2831+3 Tennessee16%44%+28 Game had 58.9 total “swing” points; only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome are shown AFFECTED TEAMBEFORE GAMEAFTER GAMECHANGE Dallas56%78%+22 Minnesota6164+3 Game had 116.6 total “swing” points; only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome are shown Philadelphia3835-3 AFFECTED TEAMBEFORE GAMEAFTER GAMECHANGE Miami4145+3 Baltimore5154+3 Indianapolis3934-5 8. Dallas 30, Green Bay 16 (Week 6) Denver177-10 Indianapolis344-30 Game had 65.0 total “swing” points; only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome are shown AFFECTED TEAMBEFORE GAMEAFTER GAMECHANGE Game had 59.7 total “swing” points; only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome are shown PLAYOFF CHANCES Pittsburgh8067-13 Washington580-58 PLAYOFF CHANCES The second ultimately meaningless late-season Titans victory that briefly shook the AFC South playoff race. Better luck next year, Tennessee! PLAYOFF CHANCES PLAYOFF CHANCES Tampa Bay29<1-28 Detroit7380+7 Tennessee4542-3 Green Bay7249-22 10. New Orleans 31, Tampa Bay 24 (Week 16) 7. Pittsburgh 28, Indianapolis 7 (Week 12) Going into Week 15, the 8-5 Tampa Bay Buccaneers had a 54 percent chance of making the playoffs but blew it with back-to-back narrow losses to the Cowboys and Saints. Although this game didn’t technically eliminate Tampa Bay from playoff contention — the team had a very outside chance of making the playoffs in Week 17, if seven games broke their way — it more or less ended the Bucs’ playoff hopes.Check out our latest NFL predictions. read more

Everyone Wants To Go Home During Extra Innings — Maybe Even The

In the top of the 10th inning in Sunday night’s nationally televised contest between the Astros and Rangers — one that will most likely be remembered as the night a 44-year-old nearly no-hit the defending World Series champs — the visiting Rangers grabbed a 3-1 lead.In the bottom of the frame, the home team’s hopes rested on Jake Marisnick, who, with runners at the corners, two outs, and his team still trailing by a pair of runs, worked a 3-1 count against Jake Diekman. A Marisnick walk would load the bases for the Astros, bringing reigning World Series MVP George Springer to the plate, a hit away from tying or winning the game.On Diekman’s fifth pitch, it appeared that Marisnick had earned a walk. “This is not a strike, this is off the plate,” ESPN broadcaster Jessica Mendoza opined as the networks’ K-Zone showed the pitch a few inches outside. Home plate umpire Adam Hamari disagreed, however, calling the pitch strike two. Marisnick struck out swinging on the following pitch to end the game, and the outfielder slammed his bat in disgust.Umps miss balls and strikes all the time. But the strike two in that Marisnick at-bat is emblematic of a larger pattern of borderline calls, albeit one that umps probably produce unwittingly: In extra innings, umpires will vary ball and strike calls in ways that tend to end the game as quickly as possible.To find this pattern, we looked at pitches thrown in the bottom of extra innings, when the game could quickly end.1Data was grabbed using Bill Petti’s baseballr package, which scrapes pitch location information from Baseballsavant.mlb.com. If the away team scored in the top half of an inning and held a lead, as was the case in Marisnick’s at-bat, an umpire hoping for a faster exit would call more strikes, making it more likely that the home team will be sent down quickly. Alternatively, if the home team got a runner aboard, umps would be more likely to favor them by calling fewer strikes, giving the team more chances to get the runner across the plate and send everyone home.Here’s a chart showing how umps changed their behavior in these situations between 2008 and 2016, a sample of roughly 32,000 pitches. Each square shows the percentage increase or decrease in the likelihood that a pitch is called a strike in that part of the strike zone. The color of each square (green for more balls, pink for more strikes) corresponds with which side umps are favoring, while how darkly shaded the square is reflects the size of the change (in percentage points). The left panel shows the comparative rate of strike calls when, in the bottom of an inning in extras, the batting team is positioned to win — defined as having a runner on base in a tie game — relative to those rates in situations when there’s no runner on base in a tie game. When the home team has a baserunner, umps call more balls, thus setting up more favorable counts for home-team hitters, creating more trouble for the pitcher, and giving the home team more chances to end the game.The right-hand side of the chart shows squares at identical strike zone locations, but shaded according to changes in strike rates when the extra-inning scenario favors the away team. More specifically, any time the away team is trying to hold onto a lead in the bottom half of an inning after the ninth. Here, and as in the pitch to Marisnick, umps call more strikes, giving the batting team fewer chances to extend the game.Altogether, teams that are in a position to win get up to a 27 percentage point increase in the rate of called balls, while teams that look like they’re about to lose see increased strike rates of up to 33 percentage points. Differences are largest in fringe areas of the strike zone, where the opportunity for umpire discretion is the highest: 62 percent of these squares in the left panel are green, while 72 percent of fringe squares on the right panel are pink.2We’re defining the fringe area as squares within one square of the black line marking the edge of the strike zone. In both settings, umps are more likely to use whatever behavior gets the game over with the quickest. That may not necessarily be a bad thing. MLB games are already slow, and extra-innings play often comes late at night, which means smaller crowds and fewer television viewers.MLB did not immediately respond to a request for comment, but the league has made no secret of its interest in shortening games. Even so, umpires may not be consciously deciding who should win. Humans are susceptible to various biases they may not be aware of, and even just a bit of fatigue could unintentionally push umpires in one direction or the other on borderline calls.Moreover, according to sources within the umpire union, umps don’t get paid more when games go to extra innings. In other words, MLB asks them to take on extra work without providing any extra compensation. That’s one more reason they may want the game to end early — their paycheck’s the same regardless. read more

Blue Jackets still getting accustomed to new coachs uptempo offense

Talk in Columbus during the Blue Jackets offseason often focused on new coach Scott Arniel’s up-tempo, high-octane offensive system. Meanwhile, fans wondered if a new coach would turn the team around after one of the most disappointing seasons in franchise history. After 15 games, it’s clear that the transition from former coach Ken Hitchcock’s read-and-react style to Arniel’s is still a work in progress. Ideally, Arniel would like to push a defender up the ice to help on the attack, creating offense by controlling the puck and limiting the opponent’s space. “It’s kind of meat and potatoes, get the puck deep and get the puck on the net,” Blue Jackets center Kyle Wilson said. “The way the NHL is these days, sure you see the pretty goals on the highlight reels every day, but 95 percent of them are goals in and around the net. These days, that’s how you’re going to win hockey games.” Former Buckeye and current Blue Jackets center R.J. Umberger said the system can be fun as long as the team gets up the ice without turning over the puck. “I think that we have a lot more responsibility, and as long as we’re making smart, sound plays with the puck and protecting it, we get a leash and can go out there and do a little bit more with it,” Umberger said. The Jackets’ defense has been turning in the most impressive performances in the first 15 games. The worry with Arniel’s system is that it can lead to two-on-one breakaways for the opposition, especially when the defenders are moving up the ice and into an attacking position. Yet the team ranks 20th in the league in goals per game, with 2.7, and 10th in the league in goals against, with 2.5 per game. The Jackets are 9-6, good enough for fourth place in the competitive Western Conference Central Division. Right wing Jakub Voracek said the wins column will fill up if the team is more consistent. “We’ll play well for two or three games and then we’ll just have a blowout game,” Voracek said. “We’ve just got to figure this system out and we’ve got to play even better.” Jackets defenseman Anton Stralman agreed with Voracek’s assertion but said he likes where the team is headed under Arniel. “I think the system has been good, you know, obviously it’s getting results,” Stralman said. “We’re a better team this year than we were last year, so we just have to be more consistent and put the effort in every game.” The Jackets will start the week by traveling to Los Angeles, where they will play the Kings on Wednesday at the Staples Center. read more

Young Buckeyes fight through early losses remain determined to win

First-year Ohio State baseball coach Greg Beals insists that the Buckeyes (1-2) not set specific goals as they progress through this season, though he will demand a “fighting mentality.” “We’re too young and too inexperienced to have these expectations of, ‘We should win all our games,’ or, ‘We should do this, this and that,’” Beals said Wednesday. “We need to go out and establish ourselves as a baseball team before we start setting up what our goals are.” Beals has emphasized an approach that he says will help build a great team. “We have expectations about going through the process (of improving) the quality of our at-bat, the quality of our pitches,” Beals said. Redshirt senior right fielder Brian DeLucia has already bought into his new coach’s thinking. “For right now, our expectations aren’t very extensive in terms of where we want to be at the end of the season,” DeLucia said Wednesday. “We’re gonna take it game by game.” With 19 underclassmen on its 33-player roster, OSU is a young team. DeLucia said the team’s youth is part of the reason for tempering predictions about wins and losses. “We’ve got a lot of young guys on this team,” DeLucia said. “We’ve got a lot of learning experiences, a lot of obstacles to overcome.” DeLucia also said his only expectation for the season was that he and his teammates would “fight like dogs.” Having already played their first three games, Beals’ players have proven to be resilient. While competing in the Big Ten/Big East Challenge in Florida on Friday and Saturday, OSU dropped its first two games, losing, 11-5, and, 2-0, to Cincinnati and No. 20 Louisville, respectively. The Buckeyes then eked out an 8-7 win on Saturday against No. 23 St. John’s in a game that lasted 11 innings. Beals pointed to Sunday’s win, his first as OSU’s coach, as evidence of the Buckeyes’ unwavering effort on the field. “It’s gonna take all of us, and a great example of that was the Sunday win,” Beals said. “We had to go deep into our bullpen. It took a lot of guys, and we ended up laying down a bunt to win a ball game.” In Beals’ eyes, the path to success is very simple. “Anyway, anyhow, anybody,” Beals said, “we gotta get that mentality to just fight and claw to get every success we can.” There is no set number of wins that the team is striving for, but redshirt junior right-handed pitcher Paul Geuy said the outlook is positive. “Expectations are quite high,” Geuy said Wednesday. “It’s going to be a good year, definitely.” read more

Scott Barnes falls short in Clippers 42 loss to Louisville

Left-handed pitcher Scott Barnes made his first career Triple-A start for the Columbus Clippers on Tuesday night, after starting twice for the Double-A Akron Aeros. Barnes began the season for the Aeros by giving up just two runs in 11 innings pitched, but he wasn’t quite as impressive in Columbus. He gave up four runs in five innings in his Clippers debut and, despite his team losing, 4-2, to Louisville, manager Mike Sarbaugh said he liked what he saw from Barnes. “It was a good first outing for him,” Sarbaugh said. “He gave us five good innings … definitely something to build off of.” The first runs Barnes gave up came after he walked two of the first three batters he faced in the top of the second inning, before Bats center fielder Dave Sappelt sent a hit down the right-field line to give Louisville the early 2-0 lead. Columbus battled right back and scored its first run of the game when first baseman Wes Hodges drove in shortstop Luis Valbuena in the bottom of the third, cutting Louisville’s lead to 2-1. The Clippers scored only one run in the third inning, despite having the bases loaded with no outs. Sarbaugh said it was a lost opportunity. “We had our chance in the third with bases loaded and no outs and only came up with one (run),” he said. “It had a chance to get us back in the game or even get ahead.” Barnes walked the first batter he faced in the top of the fourth, Louisville second baseman Chris Valaika. The next batter, right fielder Michael Griffin, made Barnes pay by sending a triple down the right field line to give Louisville a 3-1 lead. Center fielder Kristopher Negron grounded out in the Bats’ next at-bat, but Griffin scored to extend his team’s lead to 4-1. The most physical play of the night came in bottom of the fourth inning. After leading off with a base hit to center field to start the bottom of the fourth, Columbus center fielder Bubba Bell took second base on a wild pitch, and then third base on a ground ball. Catcher Paul Phillips was up to bat next and sent a fielder’s choice to Louisville shortstop Zack Cozart, who fired the ball to his catcher, Devin Mesoraco, as Bell sprinted toward home plate. Cozart’s throw skipped in the dirt before Bell lowered his shoulder and pummeled over Mesoraco, knocking him on his back and the ball out of his mitt for the Clippers’ second run of the night, this one unearned, again cutting the Louisville lead in half, 4-2. But following six runs in three innings, the bats stayed relatively quiet for the rest of the night. Bell was walked by Louisville reliever Carlos Fisher to start the ninth inning, and then Luke Carlin came up to pinch hit in place of Phillips for the Clippers. Carlin hit into a double play, and the next batter, Valbuena, grounded out as well. The Clippers lost back-to-back games for the second time this season. Louisville improved to 10-3 and remains in first place in the division, while Columbus fell to 8-5, two games behind the Bats, but still good enough for second place. The Clippers will have the opportunity to redeem themselves, as they play Louisville at home each of the next three nights. read more

SaberCat clawing his way back Former Buckeye Jamario ONeal is back in

If at first you don’t succeed, dust yourself off and try again. That goes for former Buckeye safety Jamario O’Neal as he continues his career in the Arena Football League with the San Jose SaberCats. A native of Mansfield, Ohio, O’Neal moved to Cleveland and played his final two years of high school at Glenville High School. O’Neal was the first commitment of the Buckeyes’ 2005 recruiting class. His career at Ohio State, however, never panned out. “I didn’t do the little things and stay on the grind that got me to that point,” O’Neal said. “I had a lot going in my life with school and everything, and I just kind of lost my passion for football.” O’Neal was an All-Ohio team selection his junior and senior years of high school. His senior year garnered him a Parade All-America honor before he came to OSU. Four years later, after splitting time at safety and cornerback with the Buckeyes, O’Neal amassed 49 tackles, one forced fumble, one interception and two passes defended. His recruiting class also included Kansas City Chiefs’ safety Donald Washington, New Orleans Saints’ cornerback Malcolm Jenkins and Washington Redskins’ defensive back Anderson Russell in the secondary with him. “Just thinking about all the times I could’ve done extra films, gassers (and) time in the weight room, I had talent but didn’t work hard,” he said. “You had guys like Malcolm and Donald who worked hard and had talent.” After being suspended for the Spring Game and first two games of 2008 for a team violation, O’Neal didn’t make it back into the starting rotation. O’Neal worked out during Pro Day, but no one offered him a contract during the NFL Draft. He spent the next two years out of football, until he got a phone call from his agent in October 2010 regarding the SaberCats and another chance on the field. “I had time to reflect while I was away,” he said. He immediately began to study the team playbook and prepare for the faster pace of the indoor game. “I was out of football for damned near two years,” he said. “Adjusting to the mental aspect was easy. With the physical aspect, that is something that you have to work on everyday.” After missing the first four games of the season with a strained hamstring, O’Neal had an immediate impact with a forced fumble and recovery in his first game against the Tulsa Talons. “Jamario brought real good enthusiasm,” teammate Mervin Brookins said. “He turns it on when he gets on the field.” In week seven, O’Neal had an interception return for a touchdown in a 68-61 win against the Philadelphia Soul. Since then, he’s had 11.5 tackles, nine of which were solo in three games for the 5-3 SaberCats. Having proved his playing abilities to everyone who said he was a bust, O’Neal is confident when talking about his future after football. “After this: big things. I just need to stay focused,” he said. read more

Ohio State athletics selfreports 24 minor NCAA violations

Coach Pete Hanson sent letters to two prospective student-athletes in March 2013 that promised them athletically related financial aid. At the time each athlete received said letter, they had not yet reached their senior years in high school. The Compliance Office determined there to be seven impermissible phone calls to prospective student-athletes and/or their parents after an April 2013 review of phone records between Aug. 1, 2012, and March 1, 2013. The report states they were the result of inadvertent “pocket dials.” A coach inadvertently sent recruiting materials to a 2016 prospective student-athlete. Men’s GymnasticsReported Nov. 5 Two incoming prospective student-athletes — one in men’s soccer and the other in women’s volleyball — participated in voluntary workouts conducted by an OSU strength coach while not being enrolled at OSU. Program engaged in seven hours of out-of-season conditioning activities involving gymnastics equipment. Members of the synchronized swimming team posted photos of prospective student-athletes they were hosting to both Facebook and Instagram on Oct. 21, 2012. The photos that were posted were then commented on by the student-athletes and coach Holly Vargo-Brown. Coach Geoff Carlston made an impermissible telephone call to a prospective student-athlete who was a sophomore in high school on Oct. 8, 2012. On April 24, an assistant coach replied to an email from a prospective student-athlete who was a sophomore in high school. Reported Nov. 4 Women’s LacrosseReported July 23 Two private camps in spring 2013 impermissibly used the names of an OSU coach and two student-athletes to advertise the camps. A women’s hockey volunteer coach was involved with a local sports club that had multiple prospective student-athletes residing outside a permitted 50-mile radius of the university. On May 7, the coach provided a private lesson to a current member of the women’s team, and while also serving as a volunteer coach for the men’s ice hockey team from 2009-11, the coach provided three student-athletes a combined total of four private lessons during summer vacation. Women’s SoccerReported July 25 Synchronized SwimmingReported July 9 Click to expand.The Ohio State athletic department self-reported 24 minor violations in the second half of 2013, including nine for “impermissible” phone calls, text messages and emails to prospective student-athletes, as well as three violations for various involvement in conditioning and summer camp activities.The figures are a result of an open records request submitted Thursday by The Lantern and released Friday by the OSU public records office.None of the violations are considered major, but the report included 19 violations that included “prospective student-athletes.”The last 2013 violation was reported Nov. 6.In each case, the school proposed its own corrective action to either the Big Ten or NCAA, who accepted the proposals but at times, offered further recommendations to each sport. Common resolutions include issuing a letter of education to the respective coaching staff and restraining them from contacting the prospective student-athletes for a period of time, usually two weeks. The football program, however, was only restricted to one week of no contact for impermissible phone calls.OSU athletic director and Vice President Gene Smith said the school typically has “about 40” self-reported secondary violations annually during an interview with The Lantern May 15, 2012.“On an annual basis, we have about 40 (violations),” Smith said. “It ranges in that area we’re sitting at. In that 40 range is where we always hang.“Our whole thing is if we have 10 (violations), I’d have a problem. I mean, I really would because people are going to make mistakes. And that means if I only have 10 out of 350 employees (and) 1,000 athletes – something’s not right.”FootballReported June 27 WrestlingReported July 11 Carlston replied to a text message from a prospective student-athlete in February 2013 who was a junior in high school. Carlston mistakenly thought it was an email, not a text. Reported July 19 On Jan. 10, 2013, the Compliance Office approved and provided what was determined to be an official visit for a prospective student-athlete who had not yet been registered with the NCAA Eligibility Center. Reported July 29 On Oct. 17, 2012, coach Alexis Venechanos made an impermissible phone call to a prospective student-athlete in the 2015 class. An assistant coach made an impermissible phone call to a 2015 prospective student-athlete March 26. A total of three incoming student-athletes were employed as volunteers at the LiFE Sports Camp June 26. All three were enrolled in summer school, but were still considered prospective student-athletes in terms of employment. On both March 25 and May 7, coach Tom Ryan made two impermissible phone calls to 2014 prospective student-athletes. The field hockey program received approval from the OSU Compliance Office that allowed it to put an image of a current member of the team on an institutional brochure. Women’s VolleyballReported July 15 BaseballReported July 29 A member of the coaching staff was reported to have used a smokeless tobacco product during a game, violating NCAA bylaws. An assistant coach made an impermissible phone call to a 2015 prospective student-athlete April 25. An assistant coach and an assistant director of compliance distributed camp postcards at a soccer tournament May 4. Reported Nov. 6 Field HockeyReported July 24 Men’s SoccerReported July 29 The baseball director of operations participated in an off-campus baseball league against prospective student-athletes. Women’s GolfReported Sept. 12 On June 25, coach Therese Hession accepted a Facebook friend request from a 2016 prospective student-athlete. Two incoming prospective student-athletes — one in women’s volleyball and the other in men’s soccer — participated in voluntary workouts conducted by an OSU strength coach while not enrolled at OSU. Men’s and Women’s Ice HockeyReported Aug. 1 Men’s VolleyballReported July 15 Men’s and Women’s Swimming and DivingReported July 15During a dead period, then-men’s and women’s diving coach Vince Panzano flew to The Woodlands, Texas, April 15 and observed several unknown prospective student-athletes practice. read more

Rick Lewis and Ohio State lacrosse set sights on matchup with Rutgers

Rick Lewis and the Buckeyes are set to take on the Rutgers Scarlet Knights, his fathers former team on Saturday.Credit: Molly Tavoletti / Lantern photographerRick Lewis took the lacrosse field in Piscataway, N.J., 29 years ago to lead the defense for Rutgers in the 1986 NCAA tournament. Now his son, Rick Lewis Jr., prepares to step onto that same field, as the Ohio State men’s lacrosse team looks to bring home a win this weekend in the Buckeyes’ final regular-season matchup of the inaugural Big Ten lacrosse season.“I’ve always looked up to my dad,” Lewis Jr. said. “So it’ll be really special to have my last regular season game … where he played his first.”Now a senior midfielder and captain for OSU, Lewis Jr. grew up with a lacrosse stick in his hand, receiving his first one from his dad’s friends at the hospital just hours after he was born. From there, his dad became his coach and the rest is history, Lewis Jr. said.The midfielder grew up playing in Cumming, Ga., earning All-American honors at St. Pius X Catholic High School, and also spent time playing in leagues in New Jersey, making him no stranger to Rutgers territory.“I know a lot of those guys,” Lewis Jr. said. “With the team in New Jersey, I was actually coached by my dad’s college roommate. I even lived at his house for the summer.”And while his old summer coach might be supporting Rutgers this weekend, Lewis Jr. said his dad will be on OSU’s side.“He’s rooting for the Buckeyes, definitely wearing scarlet and gray,” Lewis Jr. said.For the Lewis family, Saturday’s matchup might be “a fun rivalry game,” but for OSU, the stakes are high to bring home a final conference win for the regular season. And while Rutgers has already lost its chance at an NCAA tournament berth, OSU coach Nick Myers said he expects the Scarlet Knights to be ready to win.“These are two tough teams that are both hungry for a final Big Ten win,” Myers said. “It’ll be a battle.”OSU is coming off its only home loss this season, a 10-9 overtime heartbreaker against Maryland on Saturday at Ohio Stadium. The Terrapins locked up at least a share of the Big Ten title, and a win would have done the same for the Buckeyes. But instead of dwelling on the disappointment, the team used the loss as motivation through practices this week, Myers said.“It was the closure we needed,” he said. “We looked at what we did well, and the situations throughout the game where we need to improve. We’re focused on how to be successful against a formidable team this weekend.”Senior midfielder Christopher May said OSU focused on its efforts at the face-off X in particular, hoping to secure regular possession to kick-start the offense against Rutgers.“Maryland had a super talented faceoff unit. They communicated well and were good at causing loose balls, so we took that as a learning experience,” May said. “Rutgers likes to create offense off the faceoff. We’re going to try to limit the transition and put ourselves in a better position to win this game.”The loss against Maryland dropped OSU to No. 2 in the Big Ten. Even if the Terrapins lose against Johns Hopkins this weekend, the Buckeyes would share the No. 1 spot heading into the conference tournament, but would fall short because of the tiebreaker, as long as they win against Rutgers on Saturday.“We come out every game (at) full speed. They’re a very dangerous team so we’re preparing and ready to go,” Lewis Jr. said. “We’re focused on playing a full 60 minutes. If we do that, we can play with anybody in the country.”The game against Rutgers marks the end of the inaugural Big Ten regular season, one that, regardless of record, has been an honor for the team, Myers said.“It’s been everything we could’ve hoped it would be,” he said.Saturday’s game is set for noon in Piscataway, N.J. read more

Opinion Dualthreat Tate Martell provides Ohio State best option as starting quarterback

Ohio State freshman quarterback Tate Martell warms up prior to the Buckeyes’ season-opening 49-21 win over Indiana on Aug. 31 in Bloomington, Indiana. Credit: Colin Hass-Hill | Sports EditorRarely in the recent history of Ohio State has the team not started a mobile quarterback under center.A program that takes Woody Hayes’ iconic quote, “Three yards and a cloud of dust” to heart, Ohio State historically won national titles on the shoulders of running backs, but has since relied on mobile quarterbacks as another option to run the ball and pass only when needed.Dwayne Haskins is not that type of quarterback. Tate Martell is.Martell was listed as the No. 2 dual-threat quarterback in the 2017 recruiting class, having flashed a powerful enough arm to complete passes downfield while also demonstrating an elusive running style that is more similar to the style of Braxton Miller rather than J.T. Barrett.Coaches have spoken of Martell with nothing but praise, acknowledging the progress he has made both in maturity and skill set since stepping foot on campus in the spring 2017. Martell embraced his role as scout team quarterback last season, helping the defense prepare while also working to improve his game during practice.The knock on Martell is that he lacks the experience of both Haskins and redshirt junior Joe Burrow. Haskins appeared in several games in 2017, including carrying the team in its win against Michigan. Martell has never appeared in a collegiate game, but that has not stopped quarterbacks in the past. Barrett began the 2014 season as the starting quarterback lacking college experience, admittedly filling in for the injured Miller. His predecessor started games in his true freshman campaign, taking over under center in just the fourth game of the 2011 season.Experience should be a factor, but it shouldn’t always be the deciding factor when examining how to maximize a team. Head coach Urban Meyer has leaned on mobile quarterbacks throughout his coaching career, ranging from Alex Smith to Tim Tebow to Miller to Barrett. The only time he had a pocket-passing quarterback at Ohio State was when Cardale Jones began the 2015 season as the starting quarterback, replaced later in the year by Barrett.Martell offers the Buckeyes an explosive runner who can make things happen even when the pocket collapses around him. If no one is available downfield, Martell has the ability to move. And while Martell might not be able to connect on as many deep passes as a quarterback like Haskins, he should still be effective enough passing to keep teams wary of his throwing ability.Martell is not viewed as the favorite to win the job and his legs give him the option to play other positions. But in a typical Ohio State offense, there is no better fit than a player like Martell. read more

Football Dwayne Haskins is the Heismancaliber quarterback he knew he was

Ohio State redshirt sophomore quarterback Dwayne Haskins (7) pumps up the crowd after McLaurin scored a touchdown in the first half of the B1G Championship Game vs. Northwestern on Dec. 1. Ohio State won 45-24. Credit: Casey Cascaldo | Photo EditorDwayne Haskins came into this season with big shoes to fill.Following behind J.T. Barrett, who held a handful of Ohio State records and was a part of the two teams that made the College Football Playoff, the redshirt sophomore was not expected to immediately become the next legend under center.But Haskins did that and more this season, and he hasn’t shown it in a more spectacular fashion than he did in Ohio State’s 45-24 victory against Northwestern in the Big Ten Championship.For many, all this success from a first-year starter came as a surprise. But for Haskins, he knew he was going to win the job in the offseason.He knew he would be the star that he eventually became.“I knew I was gonna be the guy, just a matter of time before [Urban Meyer] made the decision,” Haskins said. “I always wanted to come to school here at 10 years old, I knew I was gonna be a quarterback here, knew we were gonna do great things this year, and that’s me birthing it into existence.”Haskins completed 34-of-41 passes for 499 yards and five touchdowns with one interception. The completions, yards and touchdown passes were all records for the Big Ten Championship.During the most impressive performance of his collegiate career, Haskins passed Barrett for the most total touchdowns in a single season in Big Ten history.He beat his own program record of 470 passing yards he set in the loss to Purdue, and earned his fifth game of 400 passing yards or more. Every other quarterback in Ohio State history has combined for one of those games.“I mean it is what it is, he be doing it all year,” redshirt junior wide receiver K.J. Hill said. “I feel like he should be in New York and win the Heisman.”The Heisman race has officially opened up after Alabama sophomore quarterback Tua Tagovailoa was injured in the third quarter after throwing 10-of-25 for 164 yards, a touchdown and two interceptions.Tagovailoa, Haskins and Oklahoma redshirt junior quarterback Kyler Murray appear to be the lead candidates after Saturday’s games, and Haskins still may be the least likely of the trio to end up with the trophy.But the redshirt sophomore has found a way to win games like Saturday’s Big Ten Championship all season long.With the Ohio State run game regressing to 2.3 yards per carry, Haskins opened up Northwestern’s zone defense — designed to allow short-yardage plays, but stop deep balls — with touchdown passes of 29 and 42 yards, as well as another 63-yard throw to redshirt senior wide receiver Johnnie Dixon.The 42-yard score was to redshirt senior wide receiver Terry McLaurin perfectly in stride over McLaurin’s shoulder on the right sideline.McLaurin said he often doesn’t have to do much because of his quarterback’s accuracy.“It makes my job a lot easier,” McLaurin said. “A lot of my passes this season have been right in my bread basket. All I gotta do is catch it.”Haskins’ day was not without errors.In the second quarter, Haskins had Hill open on the left side of the field, but the redshirt sophomore overthrew it, giving the Wildcats an easy interception.But for the crucial error in the first half, there were plenty of highlight moments to make up for it.Haskins showed his improved footwork with a 16-yard touchdown pass to McLaurin on a perfect throw to the corner of the end zone to get Ohio State up early. In the second half, Haskins found Dixon on the 63-yard throw, the entirety of the yards picked up through the air.Whether he is going to the College Football Playoff or, more likely, the Rose Bowl, Haskins is satisfied with the season his team has put together.“Any team would want to be 12-1 and win a conference championship, so whether that’s in the playoffs or the Rose Bowl, you know it’s just an opportunity to play for the university, play for each other,” Haskins said. “Regardless of whether you make the playoffs or not, and I’m just happy to be a part of this team.”Haskins, 13 starts later, now sits atop as one of the most prolific passers Ohio State has ever had.The redshirt sophomore who was once committed to Maryland, who knew the whole time he was going to be the guy, has become the guy who nearly threw for 500 yards in the Big Ten Championship.Only time will tell if Haskins has done enough to be invited as a Heisman trophy nominee. Haskins said he feels he has “a pretty good shot,” but to head coach Urban Meyer, there should be no doubt.“He’s without question a Heisman candidate. I’ve seen the statistics of the other two great players, and there’s no doubt. Dwayne Haskins is a Heisman candidate, and he should be in New York City.” read more

Soldiers killed in tank live fire explosion named

first_imgPractice tank shells waiting to be used on the Castlemartin range earlier this monthCredit:RTR/Facebook Both men were fathers. Cpl Hatfield, aged 27, was engaged with a young daughter and lived in Everleigh, Wiltshire.Cpl Neilson, aged 30, was from Blackburn, Lancs, and was married with a young daughter. A Royal Tank Regiment Challenger 2 on exercise at Castlemartin, South Wales, earlier this month A Royal Tank Regiment Challenger 2 on exercise at Castlemartin, South Wales, earlier this monthCredit:RTR/Facebook Lt Col Simon Ridgway, commanding officer of regiment, said the soldiers “loved what they did” and the unit had “lost two real characters and feels truly honoured to have served with them”.”They will both be sorely missed,” he added. Two soldiers who died after ammunition is believed to have exploded inside their tank have been described as “exceptionally talented”.Cpl Matthew Hatfield and Cpl Darren Neilson, of the Royal Tank Regiment, died after an explosion inside their vehicle during a live firing exercise earlier this week.Two other soldiers remain in a serious condition in hospital. Practice tank shells waiting to be used on the Castlemartin range earlier this monthcenter_img Cpl Darren Neilson with his wifeCredit:Wales news service Tank firing exercises have been temporarily banned after the incident during training at Castlemartin Ranges in Pembrokeshire.The four-man crew of the Challenger 2 main battle tank was firing 120mm practice shells at targets on the Castlemartin Ranges in Pembrokeshire when the explosion occurred.Army sources said the blast was believed to be “ammunition related”.Each practice shell has a dummy warhead, but the same propelling charge as a combat shell. Cpl Darren Neilson with his wife A spokesman for the MoD said: “A ban on tank live firing training has been put in place until the findings of the investigation are known. Further action will follow as appropriate.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

British Museum goes digital to ease congestion at most popular exhibits

first_imgRosetta Stone “When you look into the future, digital will play a much bigger role when it comes to making people engage with the collections and taking people through it. The British Museum Currently, director Hartwig Fischer said, some 37 per cent of the world’s landmass is absent or underrepresented in the public gallery space.Asked about congestion in the galleries during peak times, he said staff hoped to use digital “suggestions of how to move” to bring about “better distribution” of guests inside the museum.“That’s obviously one of the tasks we have to tackle,” he said. “It’s one of the biggest collections in the world.“Certain areas will always be much visited. This is a very public and popular space. You will always, when you come here, have the privilege of being with others, which is wonderful. The British Museum Rosetta Stone “You will be able to understand much more precisely what people are looking for, where their special interest is, how much time they have, do they come with kids or without kids.”You will then be able to answer with a tailor-made suggestion as to where to go and perhaps take them to two or three other places they did not recognise.”To make them see what they want to see, and then make them see yet another thing.”center_img The mummy of the Ancient Egyptian Princess 'Tamut' at the British Museum The British Museum is developing “tailor-made” technology to combat congestion in its most popular galleries, as it works to lure visitors away from seeing just its star exhibits towards lesser-known items elsewhere.The museum is examining the tastes and decisions of its visitors, to develop technology which will match the artefacts they already want to see with similar items they did not know existed.The “tailor-made solution” will be designed to help tourists branch out from the Rosetta Stone, Parthenon sculptures and mummies, and utilise the less populated parts of its galleries.The research is part of long-terms plans for the gallery, which include opening the Reading Room for exhibitions and bringing more objects from the Americas and Polynesia out of storage. The mummy of the Ancient Egyptian Princess ‘Tamut’ at the British Museum A spokesman for the museum said it was already asking gallery assistants to give feedback on which parts of the collection were proving most popular, and which artefacts are most photographed.Eventually, it would like to equip visitors with tools which would allow them to walk past an exhibit, and have information about it delivered straight to their phones along with suggestions of other things they might like to see.Dr Fischer’s plans for the coming years include a pledge to “recalibrate the balance and presence of different cultures”, with too few objects from the likes of Australia, Papua New Guinea and Polynesia currently on permanent display.The museum will open three new or refurbished permanent galleries in 2017-18, on China and South Asia, Japan and the Islamic world. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

Dont finish the course of antibiotics experts turn medical advice on its

first_imgDoctors must stop telling patients to finish an entire course of antibiotics because it is driving antimicrobial resistance, a group of eminent specialists has warned.Patients should be encouraged to continue taking medication only until they feel better, to avoid the overuse of drugs, experts from bodies including Public Health England and the University of Oxford are now advising.Current guidance from the NHS and the World Health Organisation says it is essential to ‘finish a course’ of antibiotics to avoid triggering more virulent forms of disease. Professor Helen Stokes-Lampard, Chair of the Royal College of GPs, said: “Recommended courses of antibiotics are not random – they are tailored to individual conditions, and in many cases courses are quite short, for example for urinary tract infections, three days is often enough to cure the infection.“We are concerned about the concept of patients stopping taking their medication mid-way through a course once they ‘feel better’, because improvement in symptoms does not necessarily mean the infection has been completely eradicated.“It’s important that patients have clear messages and the mantra to always take the full course of antibiotics is well known – changing this will simply confuse people.” The Department of Health will continue to review the evidence on prescribing and drug resistant infectionChief medical officer Dame Sally Davies Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. But in a new article in the British Medical Journal (BMJ), 10 leading experts said the public health message is not backed by evidence and should be dropped. They claim it actually puts the public at greater risk from antimicrobial resistance.“Historically, antibiotic courses were driven by fear of undertreatment, with less concern about overuse,” said lead author Martin Llewelyn professor of infectious diseases at Brighton and Sussex Medical School.“The idea that stopping antibiotic treatment early encourages antibiotic resistance is not supported by evidence, while taking antibiotics for longer than necessary increases the risk of resistance.“We encourage policy makers, educators, and doctors to stop advocating ‘complete the course’ when communicating with the public.” Prof Jodi Lindsay, Professor of Microbial Pathogenesis, St George’s, University of London, added: “The evidence for ‘completing the course’ is poor, and the length of the course of antibiotics has been estimated based on a fear of under-treating rather than any studies. A group of specialists has called for a change in guidance to prevent people taking pills needlessly Credit: Mike Harrington Sir Alexander Fleming  However the Royal College of GPs said it was ‘concerned’ about allowing patients to judge for themselves when to stop taking medication, and argue it could cause confusion. A group of specialists has called for a change in guidance to prevent people taking pills needlessly  Chief medical officer Dame Sally Davies, also said that the message to the public should remain unchanged until there was further research.“NICE is currently developing guidance for managing common infections, which will look at all available evidence on appropriate prescribing of antibiotics,” she said.“The Department of Health will continue to review the evidence on prescribing and drug resistant infections, as we aim to continue the great progress we have made at home and abroad on this issue.”Yet many independent experts argued that changes to prescribing rules were long overdue. Fears that stopping antibiotics early could trigger more dangerous forms of disease date back to Alexander Fleming who found that bacteria quickly become ‘acclimatised’ to penicillin and patients who take insufficient doses may transmit a more dangerous strain to family members.In his Nobel Prize acceptance speech in 1945, Fleming warned: “If you use penicillin, use enough.” But in the BMJ article the experts argue that when a patient takes any antibiotics it allows dangerous strains of bacteria to grow on the skin and gut which could cause problems later. The longer the course, the more the resistance builds.In the UK, at least 12,000 people die from antibiotic-resistant bugs each year, experts estimate – more than die of breast cancer. “The evidence for shorter courses of antibiotics being equal to longer courses, in terms of cure or outcome, is generally good, although more studies would help.”Prof Mark Woolhouse, Professor of Infectious Disease Epidemiology, University of Edinburgh, said: “It is very clear that prescribing practices do need to change; there is every indication that current volumes of antibiotic usage are too high to be sustainable.“We need to start to use antibiotics more wisely before it’s too late.”Prof Peter Openshaw, President of the British Society for Immunology and Professor of Experimental Medicine, Imperial College London added: “Far from being irresponsible, shortening the duration of a course of antibiotics might make antibiotic resistance less likely.”Experts pointed out that for some diseases, such as tuberculosis, a long duration of antibiotics is vital. Sir Alexander Fleming Credit:Getty  It is very clear that prescribing practices do need to changeProf Mark Woolhouse, University of Edinburgh The specialists also warn that current guidance ignores the fact that patients often respond differently to the same antibiotic, with some needing longer courses than others.Commenting on the research Alison Holmes, Professor of Infectious Diseases at Imperial College London said it was ‘astonishing’ that doctors still do not know the optimum duration for taking drugs even though a long course raises the risk of bacterial resistance.“The ‘complete the course’ message directly conflicts with the societal messages regarding the changes needed in behaviour and attitudes to minimise unnecessary exposure to antibiotics,” she said.last_img read more

First migraine drug in 20 years can half number of attacks study

first_img Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. The World Health Organisation rates migraine as one of the top 10 causes of disability, costing the UK economy £2.25 billion per year in lost work days, yet there are currently few treatments. The NHS recommends darkness, or taking over-the-counter painkillers such as paracetamol or ibuprofen.Sufferers may also be prescribed triptans which halt discomfort by relieving swelling and narrowing blood vessels or beta blockers such as propranolol as a preventative measure, but they can leave patients feeling fatigued and are not always effective.   Yet there are currently no drugs to specifically prevent migraine from happening.The new treatment is an antibody designed to block the calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) receptor in the brain, which plays a crucial role in sparking a migraine.CGRP is a neurotransmitter, or chemical messenger, which instructs the brain to activate sensory nerves in the head and neck.Previous research found that CGRP is present in unusually high levels during a migraine attack, which is thought to cause overstimulation.The latest trial involved 955 patients who received a monthly injection of the drug, or placebo, over 24 weeks.On average patients injected with Erenumab experienced three fewer migraine days each month compared to their usual average of eight days. For 50 per cent of patients their number of attacks was cut in half.Patients treated with the drug also reported improved physical health and ability to participate in daily activities over the six month trial period as well.Novartis, the company which makes the drug, has now applied for a license from the European Medicines Agency (EMA) and is expecting a decision next year. If approved the treatment would then go before the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (Nice) who would decide if it represents value for money for the NHS.“Migraine is too often trivialised as just a headache when, in reality, it can be a debilitating, chronic condition that can destroy lives” said Simon Evans, Chief Executive of the charity Migraine Action.“The effects can last for hours – even days in many cases. An option that can prevent migraine and that is well tolerated is therefore sorely needed and we hope that this marks the start of real change in how this condition is treated and perceived.”The trial results were published in the New England Journal of Medicine.   Migraine is too often trivialised as just a headache when, in reality, it can be a debilitating, chronic condition that can destroy livesSimon Evans, Migraine Actioncenter_img Migraine sufferers have been offered new hope after trials showed a designer drug cuts the number of attacks in half. The once-a-month injection, which can be delivered at home, blocks brain molecules linked to migraine, and is the first new preventative therapy in 20 years.Around 8.5 million people in Britain suffer migraines, and there are 200,000 attacks every day in the UK. Symptoms can be so severe that lying in a darkened room is the only relief for  the throbbing pain and nausea.However the new drug, called Erenumab, appears to slash in half the number of days lost to the condition for many patients, a breakthrough which charities said marked ‘the start of a real change’ for sufferers.  Dr Peter Goadsby, Professor of Neurology at King’s College London, who led the Phase III clinical trial, said: “It clearly shows that blocking this pathway can reduce the impact of migraine.“The results represent a real transition for migraine patients from poorly understood, repurposed treatments, to a specific migraine-designed therapy.“It represents an incredibly important step forward for migraine understanding and migraine treatment.”Migraine usually involves severe head pain and often brings symptoms including nausea, vomiting and sensitivity to light or sound. It affects one in every five women and around one in every 15 men. Around half of all sufferers have a close relative with the condition, suggesting that it may be genetic.last_img read more

Councils accused of patch and dash attitude as the number of potholerelated

first_imgThe Local Government Association said that motorways and major trunk roads in England are receiving 52 times more government funding per mile than local roads maintained by councils.It called on the Government to reduce the disparity so councils can tackle the £12 billion repair bill to bring local roads up to scratch, including fixing more potholes.In one instance multiple drivers were stranded on the M25 on Boxing Day after five RAC members reported getting punctured tyres after driving over the same single pothole. Councils have been accused of a “patch and dash” mentality when fixing potholesCredit: Danny Lawson/ PA Councils have been accused of a “patch and dash” mentality when fixing potholes after the number of pothole-related breakdowns jumped by 11 per cent. New figures released by the RAC show that the number of calls they received in the last quarter of 2017 with faults likely caused by poor quality road surfaces was 2,830 compared with 2,547 in the same period in 2016. The firm warned that the underinvestment and poor maintenance of roads paired with bad weather conditions had left the condition of many roads “hanging in the balance.”Driving into potholes can cause broken suspension springs, damaged shock absorbers and distorted wheels.An RAC spokesman said: “The heavy rainfall and icy conditions have meant a lot of potholes have appeared. “But the repairing of many potholes is often poor, there is a what we call a patch and dash system. Tarmac is just chucked off the back of a lorry and that’s it fixed, until it’s next icy and then it all crumbles apart.”The firm added that it was highly likely that road conditions would continue to deteriorate in 2018, especially in areas that see extreme weather conditions.RAC chief engineer David Bizley added: “We are still suffering from years of under investment and poor maintenance standards on our local roads and it only takes a sustained period of extreme weather for there to be a significantly increased volume of potholes and crumbling road surfaces.  “The patch and dash approach to pothole repairs is just a temporary sticking plaster and a permanent repair should be carried out as soon possible.” Multiple drivers were stranded on the M25 on Boxing Day after driving over the same single potholecenter_img Multiple drivers were stranded on the M25 on Boxing Day after driving over the same single potholeCredit: Ben Birchall/ PA Councils have been accused of a “patch and dash” mentality when fixing potholes Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

Picasso portrait sells for record £498 million

first_imgA Picasso artwork has sold for nearly £50 million – the highest auction price for any painting ever sold in Europe in pounds.The artist’s portrait of Marie-Therese Walter, known as his “golden muse”, sold for £49.8 million at Sotheby’s London on Wednesday evening.The 1937 painting has never been sold on the market before, having previously been part of a private collection.Femme au beret et a la robe quadrillee was painted in the same year as the artist’s famous Guernica.Thomas Bompard, head of Sotheby’s London impressionist and modern art evening sales, called the oil on canvas work “one of the greatest portraits by Picasso to appear on the market in recent years.” He said: “Of all of the artist’s styles and decades, this is the one that most epitomises the legacy of Picasso as a portraitist of women – with this particular painting encompassing all of the key elements for which he is recognised and celebrated.”The painting sold for the second highest price in pounds in Europe is Rubens’ The Massacre of the Innocents, which sold for £49.5 million in 2002. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

Alfie Evans parents lose legal fight to have their son flown to

first_imgAlfie Evans in hospital Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Alfie Evans in hospitalCredit:Alfie’s Army Official/PA Supreme Court justices and European Court of Human Rights judges refused to intervene.center_img Last week, Mr Justice Hayden endorsed a detailed plan put forward by Alder Hey doctors for withdrawing life-support treatment, after considering a number of issues at a follow-up High Court hearing.Barrister Paul Diamond, who represented Alfie’s parents, on Monday asked the three appeal judges to overturn decisions made by Mr Justice Hayden last week.Alfie’s parents say their son has improved in recent weeks and had asked Mr Justice Hayden to allow a new assessment, but Mr Hayden refused that request.He said medical experts’ unanimous view was that Alfie’s brain had been eroded by disease and further assessment was pointless.They also suggested that Alfie was being unlawfully detained at Alder Hey.The judge also dismissed that suggestion.Appeal court officials said an appeal court judge had decided that Alfie should continue to receive treatment pending the outcome of Monday’s Court of Appeal hearing.Judges have heard that Alfie, born on May 9, 2016, is in a “semi-vegetative state” and has a degenerative neurological condition. The parents of a Alfie Evans who has been at the centre of a life-support treatment battle have lost their latest legal fight.A lawyer representing Tom Evans, 21, and Kate James, 20, on Monday returned to the Court of Appeal to ask judges to rule that the 23-month-old should be allowed to travel to a foreign hospital.But Lord Justice Davis, Lady Justice King and Lord Justice Moylan ruled against them after an appeal court hearing in London.The couple, who are from Liverpool, had already lost fights in the High Court, Court of Appeal, Supreme Court and European Court of Human Rights.In February, Mr Justice Hayden ruled that doctors at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Liverpool could stop treating Alfie against the wishes of his parents following hearings in the Family Division of the High Court in London and Liverpool.Specialists at Alder Hey said life-support treatment should stop and Mr Justice Hayden said he accepted medical evidence which showed that further treatment was futile.Alfie’s parents say “the state” is wrongly interfering with their parental choice.They want to move Alfie to a hospital in Rome.Mr Justice Hayden said flying Alfie to a foreign hospital would be wrong and pointless. Court of Appeal judges upheld his decisions.last_img read more

Waitrose to rename sexist sandwich after protest by feminist campaigner

Waitrose is to change the name of its Gentleman’s Smoked Chicken Caesar Roll because feminist campaigners said it was sexist.The roll, from Heston Blumenthal’s range at the supermarket, contains anchovy mayonnaise, similar to ‘gentleman’s relish’ but the name was branded “outrageous” on social media and the chain has issued an apology.Amy Lamé, Sadiq Khan’s London night Czar posted an image of the product on Twitter and said: “I never knew sandwiches were gender specific. I’m female but thankfully Waitrose let me purchase this anyway.”She tagged the organisation Everyday Sexism, who document instances of sexism experienced on a day to day basis. Other people were quick to pile in with criticism of the supermarket, with Sian Murray saying: “What a ridiculous name!” and Joe Alessi calling it “outrageous”. Nikki Alvey said she was “disappointed” with the product’s name.The roll costs £3.80, but is currently on sale at a cutdown price of £2.85 and features a picture of a rooster dressed in waders holding a fishing rod with a fish at the end of the line. I never knew sandwiches were gender specific 👀 I’m female but thankfully @waitrose let me purchase this anyway 😏 pic.twitter.com/2KyVj2qG72— Amy Lamé (@amylame) October 16, 2018 The supermarket addressed the complaints about the product by apologising to anyone who felt offended by the name ‘Gentleman’s Smoked Chicken Caesar Roll’ and promised to change it.A spokesperson told the Telegraph: “It’s never our intention to cause offence – we’re not dictating who should eat this sandwich – we hope anyone who tries it will love the distinctive flavours. However we are planning to change the name of the sandwich soon.”They did not confirm when the name change would happen, or what the new product will be called.Writing on the Waitrose website, Elle, from Brighton gave the roll a one-star review. “Tried it but was not impressed,” she said. “Too salty – both the bread and the filling plus way too much what I think was mustard. Had some sort of yeasty flavours but no other flavours. Needed some nice leafy salad and perhaps some nice tomatoes. I do not recommend this product.”The ‘Gentleman’s roll’ is not the first product to fall foul of sexism claims. Back in 2002, Nestle’s Yorkie chocolate bar launched a brash campaign in which it was labelled “Not for Girls.” The slogan stayed for ten years before being dropped quietly. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Waitrose describes the roll as: “The ultimate Caesar salad to go. A parmesan ciabatta roll filled with pulled, smoked chicken breast, beechwood smoked bacon and Parmigiano Reggiano all topped with anchovy mayonnaise and Cos lettuce for crunch.” read more

Ofsted chief warns over Steiner schools as she reveals that three quarters

He demanded that Steiner schools – both private and state funded – are subjected to “additional scrutiny” by Ofsted.The move followed a long-running Telegraph investigation into fears about child safety at the schools, as well as revelations that their official staff handbook suggests that teachers should visit children in their homes and reward them with chocolate.Two private Steiner schools have closed down in the past year, while three of the four Steiner state-funded academies are in the process of being taken over by multi-academy trusts.Ms Spielman added that inspectors did find some “encouraging signs of good practise and change” in some schools. A spokesman for the Steiner Waldorf Schools Fellowship,  the umbrella organisation which runs Steiner schools in the UK and Ireland, said it welcomes the “informed feedback” from Ofsted. “Amanda Spielman’s letter highlights several of the steps that SWSF is taking to guide school improvement and we ‘share a common purpose’ to ensure all our children are well-educated and safe,” they added. “There is no compromise where the education or safeguarding of pupils is concerned. As a Fellowship, we are committed to providing high-quality teaching built on the internationally valued principles of Waldorf education and we continue to work closely with our schools and Ofsted to achieve this goal. “Steiner schools have responded well to Ofsted’s new inspection framework and remain popular with parents. Our approach to the curriculum provides an unhurried approach to education, enabling children to learn effectively without added pressure. ” The head of Ofsted has issued a warning over Steiner schools after more than three quarters failed their inspection.Amanda Spielman revealed that of the 26 Steiner schools that have been inspected by Ofsted over the past year, 13 were branded “inadequate” and seven were rated as “requires improvement”.In a letter to the Education Secretary, Ms Spielman said: “The performance of Steiner schools overall remains poor, and there are areas of weakness that need to be addressed.“Most worryingly, inspectors found that a significant minority of the schools had ineffective safeguarding practices, and I continue to be concerned about the provision for pupils with SEND [special education needs and disabilities] about quality of education more generally and about leadership.”All but four of the Steiner schools in England are private, meaning they must adhere to independent school standards. But Ms Spielman revealed that 15 of the 22 fee-paying schools failed to meet these standards.Favoured by liberally-minded middle-class parents, Steiner schools base their curriculum on the spiritual philosophy of Rudolf Steiner, called anthroposophy, which emphasise child creativity and the importance of rearing free spirited individuals.Last year, Damain Hinds wrote to the chief inspector, Amanda Spielman, ordering Ofsted to carry out urgent inspections of Steiner schools in England. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. read more