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first_imgTavien Feaster commits to Clemson.Tavien FeasterVerbal commitments don’t mean a ton in the college football recruiting world these days, so it’s expected for fans to worry about their top prospects before they’ve been signed. Clemson fans don’t have to worry about Tavien Feaster. The 2016 five-star running back, ranked the No. 1 all-purpose back in the country by 247 Sports’ Composite Rankings, recently visited Tennessee. Shortly after his visit, he posted the following tweet. I’m committed to Clemson— FeastMode (@Fast_lane28) July 28, 2015Clemson’s 2016 class is shaping up to be a very good one. The Tigers have 11 commitments and their class is ranked the No. 15 class in the country by 247 Sports.last_img read more

first_imgCouncillor Klassen brought up a recent Facebook post by the Fort St. John Professional Firefighters Association, that reminded citizen’s to keep their fire hydrants clear of snow. Councillor Klassen asked City staff whose responsibility does this job fall upon. They responded that City staff does go out to clear hydrants, yet with so many in town if you have a hydrant near or on your property they welcome help to keep them clear in case of emergency.At the Regular Council Meeting the policy would be passed as presented, Council then made a motion for the City staff to bring back a report on how it would impact services and the budget if level one was changed to read ‘snow and ice control following snowfall accumulation greater than 7.5 and less than 15 cm over a 72 hour period based on historical data’.To view the presentation; CLICK HERE FORT ST. JOHN, B.C – Council asked City staff to bring forward more information on the policy and procedure on how snow is removed in Fort St. John.At the Committee of the Whole (COW) Meeting January 28, 2019, City staff presented a thorough break down of the snow and ice control policy, sharing with Council the principals of snow removal, establishing priority, following policy, allocating and distributing resources and how the City staff goes about doing this.Mayor Lori Ackerman had expressed concern with some of the wording used in the presentation, “The reality is our entire community is a priority, when we use words like priorities it looks like we are putting one on top of another when they are listed like this for safety.”last_img read more

first_imgThe Indian elections that kicked off last Thursday are a democratic exercise the likes of which the world has never seen. In the world’s largest democratic practice, around 900 million voters – more than the combined population of all the European countries, across 543 constituencies will cast their votes to decide the fate of political parties. The media coverage, like every election season, is being ruled by opinion polls. Surveyors and pollsters have jumped into the maze of deciphering future election results by making use of statistical models that forecast the vote share and the seat share of political parties based on surveys conducted among electorates. These forecasts have become fodder for everyday conversation. Also Read – A special kind of bondHowever, it is difficult to trust the results of opinion polls as the results differ significantly from poll to poll. Given this situation, many researchers have examined the results of opinion polls and claimed that they have failed repeatedly to predict election outcomes. A recent study presented in the book ‘The Verdict’ demonstrates that the success rate of such polls in estimating the number of seats that the winning party may bag is just 62 per cent. On similar lines, a study conducted by India Today raised concerns over the fact that day by day, opinion polls are drifting away from reality. One of the main findings of that analysis is that the errors in predicting Lok Sabha elections are on the rise since 1998-99. Also Read – Insider threat managementIn such a situation where the gap between opinion poll predictions and actual outcomes is widening, it is important to have a better statistical model in place to make sense of what factors are driving the outcomes behind elections. This can be done by indicating which types of economic and political data most meaningfully correlate with election outcomes. An attempt to develop such a holistic model that can provide precise estimates of voting behaviour must take into account all the factors that citizens keep in mind while casting their votes. In most democracies, a common belief is that good economics makes for good politics. This belief suggests that an incumbent party’s chances of winning elections increase if the region experienced positive economic growth during their term. In India, however, this popular notion is not supported by data. A simple correlation analysis between the growth rate of GDP per capita and the incumbent party getting re-elected reveals a negative relationship between the two, implying that in most cases despite higher growth incumbent does not get re-elected. This observation helps us in concluding that support base and vote bank for parties in India is dependent on a host of factors other than economic development. The two other factors that shape voting decisions of Indian voters might be social issues and public sentiment towards the government. A broad spectrum of the social issues from shelter to sanitation, education to health, personal rights to inclusion must be considered. This is important because of presence of diversity across Indian regions. For some living below the poverty line or on bare minimum income, social wellbeing would mean better shelter facilities, free healthcare, improved nutritional facilities, etc. For rich people, this would mean new opportunities to grow and improve their life. The sentiment towards the current government can be captured through two aspects. One, the vote share of the national ruling party in the state elections held during their tenure. Second, the narrative build by traditional media platforms about leaders and political parties and social media engagement of the political parties. The traditional media platforms provide voters with the facts and figures that can help them to make informed choices. And the increased exposure of voters to social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter has provided a direct link between voters and leaders. More and more candidates are relying on social media campaigns to win elections. By serving as the source of information, media has the power to impact voting behaviour of citizens. A probit regression model, with the dependent variables as ‘the chances of incumbent coming back to power’ and explanatory variables as economic development, social wellbeing, sentiment towards the government and the presence of a strong regional party, for the period 1999 to 2014 results in a success rate of 80 per cent. The model predicts that for the upcoming elections the constituencies of Uttar Pradesh will play a key role in deciding the electoral fortunes of political parties. The incumbent Bhartiya Janata Party is expected to win 215 seats with surety while there are 33 seats in which any political party can turn the tables in its favour by focusing on the right set of issues. The factors, according to the model, that dominates the arena of decision making are social issues wherein a larger piece of the puzzle comes from how inclusive the incumbent party is. It is observed that while casting their vote, people keep in mind how acceptable a leader is towards caste-based minorities and other socially backward groups, how they treat women, and what is the level of atrocities against these minority groups during the party’s tenure. The second crucial factor which dominates the arena of decision making is the sentiment towards the government. Indian voters are known for their anti-incumbency tendencies. Many instances from the Indian political history can be cited that prove that dealing with anti-incumbency has been the biggest challenge of the ruling party. For instance, BJP won a wave election in 2014 by channeling citizens anti-incumbency sentiments against the Indian National Congress. Therefore, the lesson for political parties is to devise mechanisms that focus on issue-based election campaigning, which will enable favourable public opinion and increase their chances of winning. (Amit Kapoor is chair, Institute for Competitiveness, India. Manisha Kapoor, senior researcher, Institute for Competitiveness, India has contributed to the article. The views expressed are strictly personal)last_img read more

first_imgNew York: US President Donald Trump, along with his family and businesses, on Monday sued Deutsche Bank and Capital One in an attempt to stop them from complying with Congressional subpoenas issued as part of a probe into foreign political influence. The subpoenas — which the Trumps described in their suit as “intrusive and overbroad” — were issued to several banks by the Democratic-majority House’s intelligence and financial services committees, which are looking into the president’s finances as part of a larger probe into election meddling by Russia. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince Salman ‘snubbed’ Pak PM Imran, recalled his private jet from US: ReportThe lawsuit is the latest step in Trump’s fightback against the Democrats, and alleges that the subpoenas have “no legitimate or lawful purpose.” “The subpoenas were issued to harass President Donald J. Trump, to rummage through every aspect of his personal finances, his businesses, and the private information of the President and his family, and to ferret about for any material that might be used to cause him political damage,” said the suit, filed with the US federal court in the Southern District of New York. “No grounds exist to establish any purpose other than a political one.” The suit accuses Congress of stepping beyond its law-making mandate into law enforcement, and says the subpoenas violate the privacy rights of Trump and his family.last_img read more

College Football Playoff Preview Alabamas Dominant Run Attack vs A Lucky Michigan

Alabama12-127322 TEAMRECORDCHANCE A “GOOD” TEAM MATCHES THIS RECORDAVG. WIN PROBABILITYSTRENGTH OF RECORDGAME CONTROL Michigan St.12-11467414 Michigan State: Lucky or good?It’s the play of the year: Michigan State was down 23-21 at The Big House, 10 seconds on the clock, Michigan punting on what would surely be the final play of the game. It was — just not the final play anyone could have imagined: Michigan State blocking a Michigan punt and returning it for a touchdown as time expired. What was likely the most exciting moment of the college football season also perfectly represents Michigan State’s run — a year of close calls and near-failures, but success in the end.The Spartans are 12-1 heading into the College Football Playoff vs. Alabama on Thursday. They got there not by dominance, but by the skin of their teeth. Are they lucky, or are they good? They’re both.Start with the obvious: Michigan State has a great résumé. It ended the season ranked No. 4 according to ESPN’s Strength of Record, a statistical measure of how impressive a team’s wins and losses are. Just ahead of Michigan State are — no surprise — the other playoff contenders: Clemson, Alabama and Oklahoma. Alabama and Michigan State face each other in a late New Year’s Eve game that could stretch into 2016 (depending on your time zone). Alabama is the favorite, according to FiveThirtyEight’s model, as the Tide have the nation’s top defense and a dominant running back in Derrick Henry. The Heisman winner is quite the workhorse, rushing 90 times in his previous two games. Michigan State, on the other hand, is lucky to be in the playoff at all. Although they’ve managed an impressive record en route to a Big Ten championship, the Spartans have often won — as against Michigan — by the skin of their teeth. Underpinning this ranking is the probability that an average top-25 team — specifically, a team rated in the 90th percentile according to ESPN’s Football Power Index — would have this team’s record or better after playing this team’s schedule. So the typical “good” team had only a 14 percent shot at matching the Spartans’ 12-1 record. That’s impressive, but it lags far behind the top three; Clemson and Alabama have accomplished what a typical top-25 team would have only a 2 percent probability of matching.Although Michigan State has earned a strong record, it has been awfully lucky en route. For instance, in the two weeks before that miracle win against Michigan, the Spartans had close calls against Purdue and Rutgers. Their habit of cutting it close caught up with them when Nebraska delivered their only loss in a thrilling and controversial 39-38 upset.The Spartans recovered from that loss with big wins against Ohio State and, in the Big Ten title game, versus Iowa. But both games were extremely close. Michigan State never led until the final play of the game against the Buckeyes, and it took an epic 22-play drive in the conference championship’s final minutes to beat Iowa.Luckily there’s a stat to illuminate how dominantly a team wins: ESPN’s Game Control rating, which is a reflection of a team’s average in-game win probability, adjusted for opponent strength and aggregated throughout the season. Think of it as a metric that determines how early big powerhouse schools put the game out of reach and thus avoid the coin-flip finishes Michigan State hazarded coming down the stretch.Although the familiar trio of Clemson, Alabama and Oklahoma rank No. 1 through No. 3 in Game Control, the Spartans are No. 14. That’s because their average in-game win probability was just 67 percent. By contrast, Clemson won in far more dominant fashion — on average, the Tigers had a 77 percent in-game probability of winning. (And the Tigers won all their games, after all.)It’s tempting to look at Michigan State’s résumé and thumb the scale on the side of luck; success in close (and especially flukey) games has never been very replicable in football, college or pro, and the Spartans had more than their fair share. But this dim view misses the fun parts of MSU’s season: It’s the only team to arrive in the playoff having played a full slate of thrilling games, instead of the more typical championship route, which involves a few competitive conference games sprinkled into an otherwise sleepy march to inevitability.Alok Pattani contributed database research to this article.Read more: Clemson’s One-Man Offense vs. The Balanced Sooners Oklahoma11-177133 Source: ESPN Clemson13-02%77%11 Alabama: Is Derrick Henry being run into the ground?Derrick Henry has had a magnificent season, racking up 1,986 rushing yards and 23 touchdowns, earning him the Heisman Trophy. He has also had a tremendous workload, carrying 339 times in 13 games, with at least one and possibly two left to play. This came to a head in Henry’s final two games before the playoff, with him carrying 46 times against Auburn and another 44 against Florida. The questions here are obvious: Is Derrick Henry being run into the ground? Might his workload negatively affect his pro career? Probably not, at least as far as we can tell.If Henry were an NFL running back, we might point to the fabled “Curse of 370.” The curse is an idea popularized by Aaron Schatz at Football Outsiders; when Schatz singled out running backs who had 370 or more carries in an NFL season, he noticed that they subsequently performed poorly. There’s considerable dispute over the specifics of such an effect, but workload concerns take on added meaning for college running backs, who have not yet begun their pro careers, and who, one might worry, are coughing up earning power one 40-carry game at a time.If the “curse” exists at the college level, then Henry’s season is a red flag. Henry is averaging 26.1 rushes per game — the 25th-highest per-game workload of any FBS player over the past 12 seasons. The carries have clustered in the back half of the season, as well: Over the first six games of the season, Henry averaged 20 carries per game; in the last seven, he has averaged 31.3. In total, Henry has carried the ball 339 times this season — 17th most in FBS play over the past 12 seasons — with more football left to play. Given his workload in the last two games, he might careen right past the infamous 370 mark in just 14 games.Now for the good news: Based on the available stats, a heavy college workload has no relationship to a shorter shelf life in the pros. Of 97 running backs who have played at least four NFL seasons since 2005,1A further constraint was that the back had to have at least 50 total carries in his first two seasons. there’s no statistical relationship between college rushing attempts (either total or per game) and whether the RB suffered a drop-off in NFL production between his first two years and years three and four.Of course, some NFL backs peak early and fade quickly. One can think of Alfred Morris, Knowshon Moreno, Cadillac Williams and LeGarrette Blount. In some cases that’s because of injury, but often it’s just a decline in production. Take Kevin Smith: Smith carried the ball more than 900 (!) times while at the University of Central Florida; in one particularly cruel year, he had 450 rushes. And, sure enough, Smith peaked early in the NFL. He rushed 455 times for more than 1,700 yards in his first two seasons. But that trailed off to just 106 total carries in years three and four. It’s cases like this that make it tempting to draw a link between a running back’s college workload and his pro decline. “He was just run into the ground,” you could say.But there are plenty of counterexamples. DeAngelo Williams, DeMarco Murray and Ahmad Bradshaw, for instance, all had more than 500 college rushing attempts — which is where Henry, with 547 carries, is now. Yet these backs got better as their pro careers progressed into the third and fourth years. A regression analysis between college rushing attempts (both total and per game) and the change in NFL production (whether in yards or total carries) found no relationship at all.Of course, this analysis looks only at the first four years of a back’s pro career; this was done to give us a sufficient sample (97 backs) and to avoid plaguing the analysis with a survivorship bias, as better backs have longer careers, and running backs in general have short tenures in the league.So if Derrick Henry goes for 40 or more carries for a third straight game, we’ll likely hear that he’s being used up and his best pro years are being shortened. Several years down the line, that may turn out to be true. But the argument against overuse has always been that performance takes a hit in the next few years after a heavy-workload season, and with college rushers, that doesn’t seem to be the case — at least for now. read more

Tim Tebow Is Failing Up

With that said, minor league wins above replacement numbers must be taken with a grain of salt. Data from the levels below MLB is much less trustworthy, and the shorter seasons mean smaller sample sizes from which to draw conclusions.But you don’t need a total value calculation to confirm that Tebow has been outmatched on the field. Scouts have called his swing “stiff” and identified his pitch recognition as a potentially fatal flaw.When asked about the promotion, Mets General Manager Sandy Alderson made no mention of Tebow’s marketability, pointing instead to his “on-base, his isolated power, his swing, exit velocity.” We don’t have access to all the metrics the Mets track at the minor league level, so it’s hard to prove or disprove Alderson’s assertion that Tebow has improved in the last two weeks. He did post a .311 on-base percentage despite only hitting for a .220 average, so at least he can take a walk.We don’t know whether Tebow’s underlying exit velocity is really impressive or not, but the record of players who were as bad as he was in low-A is not encouraging. Of the 77 left fielders to ever post seasons as poor as Tebow’s, only one — Franchy Cordero of the San Diego Padres — eventually made it to the majors, where he’s now producing at about replacement level, with a .405 BABIP that suggests he’ll regress.Of course, Cordero was only 20 years old when he last played in low-A, and it took him four long years to climb from there to the majors. At 29, Tebow has a much more difficult road to travel before he can sniff the National League. On the other hand, given his recent promotion to high-A, the Mets may be holding him to considerably lower standards for each level of advancement. If he maintains the same level of poor performance (according to WAR) that he turned in during his time in Columbia, he could rack up a .556 OPS with the St. Lucie Mets and still theoretically find his way to Double-A. As a baseball player, Tebow may be unimpressive, but as a demonstration of the power of marketing, he is unsurpassed. On Tuesday, the nation’s most famous low-A ballplayer, Tim Tebow, was promoted to the New York Mets’ high-A affiliate in Port St. Lucie. It almost goes without saying that the move likely had less to do with baseball and more to do with marketing and selling tickets. Tebow was such an outsized star at this level of pro baseball that one opposing team went so far as to label his teammates as “Not Tim Tebow” on the scoreboard. (The team later apologized.)But let’s pretend for a moment that the Columbia Fireflies’ left fielder doesn’t have a Heisman Trophy, nearly 7 million followers on Twitter and Facebook and one of the sports world’s most successful brands. If he were your run-of-the-mill anonymous prospect delivering this level of performance, just how peculiar would his promotion be?The answer, as expected, is that it’s very, very peculiar. Tebow’s resume with the Fireflies was hardly awe-inspiring: In 64 games, he posted a .648 OPS, which would be poor for a third baseman, never mind a left fielder. Nor was his defense excellent, as his seven errors show. In fact, his overall performance was so poor that his promotion is one of the least probable in the last decade.Baseball Prospectus keeps detailed numbers on the low-A leagues going back to 2005. They track everything from slugging percentage to fielding runs above average, then total it all up into a minor league version of wins above replacement. According to that metric, Tebow’s season was actually below replacement level, in the 4th percentile of performance in the last 12 years of low-A ball. In fact, only 17 corner outfielders have posted worse seasons and still played in high-A within the same year. read more

Junior forward Ryan Dzingel (18) attempts to win a faceoff during a game against Michigan March 2 at Nationwide Arena. OSU lost, 4-3.Credit: Ben Jackson / For The LanternThe Big Ten men’s hockey leading scorer is no longer going to wreak havoc on opposing college defenders.Ohio State junior forward Ryan Dzingel announced his intentions to forgo his senior season after signing an entry-level contract with the NHL’s Ottawa Senators.“It was a very difficult decision leaving my friends and the program I love. I felt like it was the right choice for me moving forward with my career, even though Ohio State is heading in the right direction,” Dzingel said in a press release. “Thank you again to my teammates, coaches and fans. I will miss it.”Dzingel’s deal is for two years, and he is also set to sign an amateur tryout agreement. Doing so means he is set to be assigned to the team’s American Hockey League affiliate — the Binghamton Senators — for the rest of the season.Dzingel finished his junior year at OSU as the Big Ten’s leader in goals (22) and points (46), and was named to the All-Big Ten team in addition to being a finalist for this year’s Hobey Baker Award, given to the nation’s top college player.First-year OSU coach Steve Rohlik said the team is looking forward to seeing Dzingel compete at the professional level.“We are very proud of Ryan and all he has accomplished at Ohio State,” Rohlik said in the release. “We are excited for his new journey and wish him all the best.”Dzingel finished at or tied for the team lead in points at OSU in each of his three seasons as a Buckeye, compiling a total of 108 points in 110 games.The Wheaton, Ill., native was drafted by Ottawa in seventh round of the 2011 NHL Draft. The Senators’ next game is scheduled for Friday against the Rochester Americans.Dzingel did not immediately respond to The Lantern’s request for comment Wednesday. read more

Ohio State senior outfielder Shea Murray stands in the box against Purdue on April 1, 2017 at Bill Davis Stadium. Credit: Edward Sutelan | Lantern reporterThe Ohio State baseball team was coming off their most dominating win of the season and first Big Ten win in a 13-2 victory over Purdue after scoring nine runs in the first four innings.But the tables turned on Saturday as the Boilermakers pounded out six runs in the first four innings and held on to that early lead to win, 6-1.Purdue put its leadoff hitter aboard in each of those innings and every time, that runner came around to score. The inability to keep the leadoff batter off base was a problem for the Buckeyes, said OSU coach Greg Beals, and one that cost them the game.“They got the leadoff guy on the first four innings. Two of them, we let them on base freely,” Beals said. “They were hit batsmen or a walk. We ended up having eight of those total for the night. Didn’t pitch the ball nearly as cleanly as we needed to be successful.”Taking their first lead of the series, the Boilermakers’ leadoff hitter reached base on a first-pitch hit-by-pitch and later came around to score on a groundout to the shortstop. A leadoff double and sacrifice bunt put a runner on third for freshman third baseman Mike Madej who punched a single through the left side of the infield to bring the score to 2-0. Junior right fielder Alec Olund lined a triple into the right field corner, scoring Madej from second. Olund scored later in the inning on a groundout, increasing his team’s lead to four runs.The Boilermakers again scored runs on groundouts, one in both the third and fourth innings to raise the score to 6-0.Feltner was able to keep the leadoff batter from reaching first base and scoring for the first time all night in the top of the fifth inning. Sophomore left fielder Nick Dalesandro grounded out to Feltner, who stared down Dalesandro after he fielded the ball.“There was no words said by Feltner. He stared him down,” Beals said. “I don’t like it, but it’s that fine line between you want your guys to have some competitive juice, but you want to make sure they’re controlling it properly and using it properly.”Beals said that emotions just got the better of him, but that they had a discussion and cleared up the situation.“We talked about it, we addressed it and he knows his emotions got away from him a little bit there,” Beals said.With one out in the bottom of the fifth inning, the Buckeyes strung together three straight hits, capped off by an RBI double from redshirt senior right fielder Shea Murray that brought the score to 6-1.Murray finished the game with three of the Buckeyes’ eight hits and both the team’s doubles. It was the first career multi-hit game for the pitcher-turned-outfielder.“I had runners on first and third, on the corners, and my thought process there was just trying to hit something far and deep and I kind of got out in front of it and took it down the line,” Murray said.Making the transition from pitcher to outfielder for Murray has taken some time to reach a point where he feels completely comfortable with his game, but he said he has really been feeling more confident both in the field and at the plate.“As far as defensively, I feel really comfortable. That’s something that you can get thousands of reps in over the course of time off fungos, off intersquad games and stuff,” Murray said. “I think I’m starting to feel a lot more comfortable at the plate. I think a lot of comfort at the plate comes from confidence. So a game like this obviously helps out a lot towards the confidence side of it.”The Boilermakers were provided with a strong performance from sophomore starting pitcher Gareth Stroh. Though he entered the game with a 6.83 ERA, he allowed just one run to cross in 7.2 innings. OSU mustered only six hits, one extra base hit and no walks, while he struck out two.Beals was impressed by the outing of Stroh and credited the Boilermakers’ starter with putting a lot of movement on his fastball.“He’s got a little bit of angle and deception on that fastball. Kinda that typical lefty that’s got some left-handed deception to it,” Beals said. “A little bit disappointed in our inability to get things going a little earlier off of him. Throwing a lot of fastballs to us, I thought we would make an adjustment the second time through the lineup.”Redshirt senior starting pitcher Jake Post was again unavailable to start Saturday, but Beals confirmed he will be starting on Sunday.“Jake Post is going to take the start tomorrow. Jake’s continued to get better throughout the week,” Beals said. “He tweaked the back a little bit — kind of old-man back — and he’s been able to progressively get better.”Despite the injury, Post has been eager to get back out on the mound in his senior year, Beals said.“He’s a senior and it’s going to be a big game for us,” he said. “We need to win this home series and he wants the ball so we’re going to give it to him.”Post will deliver the first pitch of Sunday’s game at 1 p.m. as OSU looks to take the rubber match against Purdue. read more

English FA fined £50k for England players wearing the wrong socks

first_imgAs if England’s World Cup exit was not hurtful enough, FIFA have now fined the English Football Association (FA) 70,000 Swiss francs (£50,000) after three of the national side’s players wore “unauthorised” socksThe culprits were Dele Alli, Eric Dier and Raheem Sterling who had been wearing the Devon-made Trusox over their official Nike socks after ignoring warnings from FIFA to stop doing it.Due to their actions, FIFA have now retaliated and announced they are fining the FA for “breaching media and marketing regulations and the FIFA equipment regulations”.Jadon Sancho, Borussia DortmundCrouch: Liverpool could beat Man United to Jadon Sancho Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Peter Crouch wouldn’t be surprised to see Jadon Sancho end up at Liverpool one day instead of his long-term pursuers Manchester United.“FIFA had previously requested the Football Association to cease the activity that led to the sanction,” read a statement, via the Independent.“In particular, several members of the English national team continued to display unauthorised commercial branding on playing equipment items before and during the quarter-final match between Sweden and England.”The Swedish FA have also been handed the same fine by FIFA for committing a similar offence earlier in the tournament.last_img read more