Five Big Name Recruits Who Visited OSU This Weekend

first_imgOklahoma State hosted a number of top-flight talents on campus both for unofficial visits and for the final mini-camp of the summer over the weekend.We gave a general overview of the names to expect both on Saturday and Sunday, but let’s face it: You want to know who the big dogs on campus were.Here are the five biggest names who made their way to Stillwater this weekend.Isaiah Spiller — Running backKlein Collins tailback Isaiah Spiller visited OSU on Saturday before making his way to Norman for the Sooners’ blowout barbecue event, and he might have been the biggest name in the 2019 class on campus.Spiller has already been offered by OSU, so his visit was little more than a trip for him to view the facilities and meet with coaches. He’s the son of former Texas A&M tight end Fred Spiller, but it’s no less important that he made the haul to Stillwater.In addition to OSU, Texas A&M, Oregon, Oregon, TCU, Baylor, Houston and others have already extended offers.Dax Hill — SafetyDax, the younger brother of Justice Hill, has also been on OSU’s radar for quite some time. The Booker T. Washington product wowed with his Odell Beckham like talents and validated his evaluation as one of the elite players in the 2019 class.“I had a real good day and I wasn’t trying to do too much, but just show the coaches what I could do,” Hill told “They really haven’t seen my play, so I wanted to show what I could do and I had a good day.” being back on campus made me realize how bad i really want it— ??CJ Moore?? (@daddydimes35) July 31, 2017At 6-foot-5, Moore — a four-star talent —  figures to be a potential plug-and-play replacement for Marcell Ateman when he arrives on campus in 2018. Although Brown is considered a bluechipper, he’s already set a commitment date for Nov. 2 — potentially hinting that he’s already got a good idea of who he wants to play for. The Crimson Tide are the leaders in the clubhouse.Branson Bragg — Offensive linemanCenters are recruits too! And Bragg is what many believe to be the best center prospect in this region.The 2019 recruit was offered by OSU during the spring game visit in April, and he made a return trip that could be a good sign for the Pokes’ chances.Bragg also has offers from Texas and OU, and he too made a trip to the Sooners barbecue event on Saturday.CJ Moore — ReceiverTulsa Union standout receiver CJ Moore, an OSU pledge, made a trip on Sunday to Stillwater. And regardless of his commitment status, it’s always good bringing him in given his status as a national recruit.Moore is locked in with his OSU pledge after picking the Pokes over Ohio State, among others, and he seemed to come away motivated after his trip to campus. Although 247 favors OSU in his recruitment, I get the sense that he’s wide open at this juncture. But OSU certainly has a strong case, and both Dax and Justice are very tight.?— Daxton Hill (@daxhill5) July 30, 2017Bobby Brown — Defensive tackleArlington Lamar defensive tackle Bobby Brown is rated as a top-150 player in the 2018 class, and OSU jumped aboard with an offer during his visit.Brown is now up to 20 offers from the likes of OU, Alabama, Texas A&M and a slew of others. While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up.last_img read more

Messi always ‘confident’ Argentina would win

first_imgWorld Cup Messi always ‘confident’ Argentina would seal dramatic World Cup progress Chris Burton Last updated 1 year ago 04:36 6/27/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(10) Lionel Messi Argentina Nigeria World Cup Russi 2018 26062018 CHRISTOPHE SIMON/AFP/Getty Images World Cup Nigeria v Argentina Lionel Messi Nigeria Argentina The Albiceleste left it late to book their place in the last 16, with Marcos Rojo grabbing a priceless winner in a battling 2-1 victory over Nigeria Lionel Messi was always “confident” that Argentina would book a place in the last 16 of World Cup 2018, despite leaving things late against Nigeria.The Albiceleste, with just one point to their name, headed into a final Group D fixture knowing that only a win would be enough to keep their dreams of global glory alive.Messi got them off to the perfect start, with a sublime finish inside 14 minutes seeing the Barcelona talisman record the 100th goal at a Russian showpiece. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Perfection from Pulisic: Chelsea’s Captain America has arrived in the Premier League Why always Raheem? ‘Unplayable’ Sterling setting a standard Man City’s other stars need to match ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Victor Moses restored parity from the penalty spot for Nigeria, but Marcos Rojo was to have the last word four minutes from time, with an unlikely hero securing progress in dramatic fashion.Messi told TyC Sports after a thrilling encounter in St Petersburg: “We were confident that we would win this game.“It’s wonderful to have won it this way. It is a well-deserved joy.“I knew that God is with us and he was not going to leave us out. I thank all the people who are here, for all their sacrifice, and all those who are in Argentina who were always with us. The shirt of the national team is above all.”Manchester United defender Rojo found himself in the right place at the right time as Argentina sought inspiration with time running out.His controlled volley, with his weaker right foot, sparked scenes of wild celebration as Jorge Sampaoli’s side survived a huge scare.There is still much work to be done by a side that was held by Iceland and beaten by Croatia, but Rojo acknowledges that anything is possible once knockout competition begins – particularly with Messi looking more like his old self.He told told TyC Sports after booking a date with France on Saturday: “We needed it. Now the Cup begins for us.“Lionel Messi had told the guys he was going to score a goal more than ever.“The goal is for my family and for this group that deserves it. Let’s go Argentina!”last_img read more

Pekerman: England clash wasn’t played with ‘good intentions’

first_imgWorld Cup Pekerman: Physical clash with England wasn’t played with ‘good intentions’ Jamie Smith 09:11 7/4/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(2) Jose Pekerman Colombia England World Cup 2018 FRANCK FIFE World Cup Colombia Colombia v England England The Three Lions won a penalty during their defeat of Colombia, but the South American side’s coach believes his opponents were also overly physical Colombia coach Jose Pekerman said England shared the blame for the physical battle as his side exited the World Cup at the last-16 stage.Yerry Mina’s 93rd-minute header forced extra-time after Harry Kane gave England the lead from the penalty spot with his sixth goal of the tournament.And after Mateus Uribe and Carlos Bacca failed to convert their penalties, Eric Dier scored the decisive spot-kick to earn a quarter-final against Sweden. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Perfection from Pulisic: Chelsea’s Captain America has arrived in the Premier League Why always Raheem? ‘Unplayable’ Sterling setting a standard Man City’s other stars need to match ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Colombia could have been reduced to 10 men in the first half when Wilmar Barrios appeared to aim a headbutt at Jordan Henderson, who exaggerated the contact on his chest and chin by suggesting he had been hit in the face.Barrios was instead shown a yellow card – one of six Colombia players to earn a booking – with Carlos Sanchez among those cautioned, the midfielder having been adjudged to have brought down Kane in the box.Replays appeared to indicate Kane was also grappling with Sanchez in the area, with Pekerman unimpressed by England’s perception of his Colombia team as a physical side.”I know they weren’t happy with us before this match because there were lots of remarks, serious comments and unfounded comments. I don’t think this is fair,” Pekerman told a news conference. “I don’t think that people in England or other countries should think of Colombia players like this. England has a great weapon in aerial play and we have seen that in all their matches. There were lots of penalty incidents with Panama and Tunisia. Players fall in the box, they collide and fall.99 – Yerry Mina’s header was the 99th goal scored in the 90th minute in World Cup history. Problems. #COLENG #COL #WorldCup — OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) July 3, 2018 “And that hurts, you have to try and stand in the shoes of these players. They are subject to situations which shouldn’t really be present in football. These interruptions are bad.”Sometimes you have to repeat a free-kick or whatever, but when there are so many fouls we have to try and find the balance so football can happen and the two sides can play the match with good intentions, not only looking at Colombia players, but England players.”I wish I was wrong, but as from the next match I think England will be much more careful. Today we were on the receiving end of this but I hope this won’t happen again. It has been obvious, too obvious.” — James Rodríguez (@jamesdrodriguez) July 3, 2018 Colombia were without star man James Rodriguez due to injury, his absence contributing to a lack of creative threat for Pekerman’s side.”One of our key players was not present tonight,” Pekerman added.”In terms of creative football, decisive finishing, James Rodriguez is absolutely an exciting player, and unfortunately he has not been in top shape at this World Cup.”Rodriguez and Pekerman were clearly upset during the penalty shootout, unable to help their side when the pressure was on.”I felt hurt and moved for my players, because I think we deserved to win tonight,” said the coach.”I never talk about the future. Today we are feeling hurt. We’ve given it all, worked very hard and I don’t think we should talk about anything else.”last_img read more

Guy Kawasaki webinar: Getting your story published

first_imgGuy Kawasaki, co-founder of, founding partner at Garage Technology, and former chief evangelist of Apple, is one of the most sought after speakers there is. And he’s agreed to present a Network for Good webinar for nonprofits on how to shape and self-publish your organization’s story.Join us for this free webinar Tuesday, January 22 at 1 p.m. ET. Register here. (If you register, a few days later you will receive a recording of the webinar so you can enjoy it even if you’re not available Tuesday. Since I always get a flurry of emails of readers telling me they did not get their recording, please note: it takes a couple of days and it may be in your spam filter. Please check there if you don’t receive it.)last_img read more

AIDS Conference Exclusive: HIV Diagnosis and Forced Sterilization in Mesoamerica

first_imgPosted on July 23, 2014November 2, 2016By: Katie Millar, Technical Writer, Women and Health Initiative, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public HealthClick to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)A quarter of HIV-positive women surveyed in Mesoamerica reported health care workers pressured them into sterilization, recent research shows. This rate was consistent across the four countries (Mexico, Nicaragua, El Salvador, and Honduras), all races, and education and socioeconomic levels in the study, showing distinct, consistent discrimination against women with HIV. This is a serious violation of reproductive rights, especially in light of advances in treatment and prevention of HIV.“It’s really unthinkable that women living with HIV are being pressured and forced into sterilization when treatment almost eliminates the possibility of mother-to-child transmission… and also provides options for safer conception and pregnancy,” says Dr. Tamil Kendall (Reuters), lead research for this project and a Canadian Institutes of Health Research postdoctoral researcher with the Women and Health Initiative and a Takemi Fellow at the Harvard School of Public Health. But, Kendall relays, “We found that only slightly more than half of the women who participated in the study were told that there exists an intervention—a regimen of AIDS-fighting antiretroviral drugs—that can reduce the probability of HIV mother-to-child transmission by 98%–99%.” Even without any intervention, an HIV-positive woman has only a 15-45% chance of transmitting the virus to her newborn. So why are health workers pressuring women to be sterilized?Stigma.Kendall said, “Even though our knowledge is growing about how safe conception and pregnancy can be with current HIV treatments; about the possibility of dramatically reducing transmission of HIV to a partner; and about interventions to help people with HIV conceive safely, this knowledge is still often ignored as a routine part of HIV care—even in the U.S. Reproduction among people with HIV continues to be very stigmatized.”The lengths to which health workers go to pressure or coerce women to sterilize are drastic. “Women are told that if they have another pregnancy that either they will die or their children will almost surely acquire HIV and die,”  Kendall said (Reuters). Some women are even denied medical care if they do not consent to sterilization. One 19-year old woman from El Salvador said, “The nurses forced me to sign. They asked me more than three times and threatened not to perform the cesarean. Because of the pressure, I had no option but to sign.” Even more extreme, some are sterilized without any consent or knowledge of the procedure.These findings have significant implications for policy advocates, makers, and enforcers. “There’s also a great need to evaluate how health care providers are held accountable—in the courts, for example—for violating the reproductive rights of women with HIV. And it’s important to work with policy makers, because they are the ones who ultimately need to hold institutions accountable,” Kendall states. Continued research and policy advocacy is needed to produce change and respect for HIV-positive women’s reproductive rights.The unique aspect of this research was it was community-based and broadly collaborative. Led by Dr. Kendall, the research was initiated by Balance, a Mexican NGO, and the International Community of Women Living with HIV and AIDS. More than 60 peer researchers, most of whom are women leaders living with HIV, collected data. In addition, research and policy advocacy are routinely integrated through in-country presentations to participating organizations and national decision-makers, the formation of a regional manifesto, and advocacy with the Commission on the Status of Women and other UN bodies.Kendall would like to recognize and thank all the organizations that participated in this research.Want to learn more about Dr. Kendall’s Research? Read interviews with her by the Harvard School of Public Health and Reuters. Want to learn more about HIV/AIDS and maternal health? See our topic page.Share this: ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read:last_img read more

Building Management Capacities in Maternal Health Clinical Leaders

first_img ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read: Posted on August 28, 2014November 2, 2016By: Priya Agrawal, Executive Director, Merck for MothersClick to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Do management capacities in clinicians really matter for maternal health? This is a key question that MSD for Mothers, along with some of its partners, is trying to tackle. MSD for Mothers is a 10-year global initiative launched in 2011 by Merck Sharp & Dohme (MSD)—better known as “Merck” in the United States and Canada—to help create a world where no woman dies from complications of pregnancy and childbirth.Since we are in the early stages of our intervention development and determining our investment path, we need you to share your thoughts and insight on this important topic and the evidence it requires.Please take five minutes to help us better understand the types of evidence we need by completing this short survey: mortality needs our attention as Millennium Development Goal (MDG) 5—the target to reduce maternal mortality by three-quarters by 2015—is the most off-track MDG and is even further behind where health systems are poor. Recently, experts have concluded that progress has been stunted by a lack of commitment from development partners to strengthen the health systems that serve women and their maternal health needs. It has been argued that there is a link between safe motherhood and the performance of a health system, and—conversely—that strategies to improve safe motherhood may be a means of achieving wider health service improvements.If this is true, could improving the management skills of clinicians in leadership positions help improve health facilities’ capacity to respond to obstetric emergencies, and ultimately reduce maternal and perinatal deaths?Nick Bloom, Professor of Economics at Stanford University, and colleagues—whose research interests focus on measuring and explaining management practices across firms and countries—has found that:There is a strong relationship between management practice and health outcomes (as well as better financial performance)Hospitals with more clinicians as managers have better managementLarger hospitals perform better, and competition appears to be good for managementGovernment ownership is associated with poor incentives management (hiring, firing, pay and promotions)If an intervention approach could be developed and tested to make clinicians better managers and if this were to result in better health outcomes, this could be an important innovative contribution to reducing maternal deaths.The work of MSD for Mothers focuses on building the management capacity of clinicians who serve in leadership positions at facilities that offer comprehensive emergency obstetric care in Tanzania. These individuals typically split their time between delivering care to patients and overseeing the operations and management of a facility. They are often placed and/or promoted into managerial positions without adequate management training or tools to operate effectively and efficiently.In April and May of 2014 we conducted a 360° assessment of clinicians in leadership positions across 17 operational and people management capabilities at six public and two private health facilities in Tanzania. A number of gaps were identified across a variety of management areas specifically for the publically managed facilities, but “data-driven decision-making” was identified as the key management capability since having a deeper understanding of and application of data will likely have an impact on maternal and perinatal health indicators and outcomes.We believe the development of data-based decision-making capabilities must follow a cyclical path. Our recommendation to the Tanzania Ministry of Health and Social Welfare is to build an intervention package that helps clinicians progress through the full capability development cycle:Improve Data Collection AwarenessBuild Capacity for Data InterpretationEnable Data-Based Decision MakingOur focus on data-driven decision-making for an upcoming intervention package targeted to be launched 2015 is at a critical development point. We are looking to the Maternal Health Task Force community to help provide some insight into what levels of evidence this intervention needs to have to show relevance, scalability, and most importantly, sustainability. Understanding what type of evidence would be attractive to this community and beyond in the global health and international development space will help ensure that we build the right evaluation approach, and ultimately a smart investment decision.Please follow the link here to complete the survey.Share this:last_img read more

The Key to Long-Lasting Donor Relationships

first_imgIt’s no secret that our sector has a problem with donor retention. Though the numbers have improved over the years, still over half of all new donors never come back to give a second gift (according to the AFP 2015 Fundraising Effectiveness Survey). Not exactly encouraging.The good news? There are many things you can do to stem the tide of donors who never give again. They all come down to one thing—building relationships. And like all good relationships, your interaction with your donors hinges on frequent, sincere, and clear communication.Remember, while charitable giving involves dollars and cents, it’s ultimately about making an impact and connecting a donor’s generosity with tangible change. Donors feel good (and are more likely to give again) when they know that their generosity is appreciated—and put to good use. As someone who works in your nonprofit day in and day out, it’s easy for you to see how important a donor’s contributions are to your mission. But for a supporter without that level of contact—like someone who attended your spring gala but hasn’t heard from you since—it’s not something that’s easily visualized. You need to remind donors of the important impact they have. They are responsible for the positive change you bring to your community.For happier donors who give again, you must commit to a plan of frequent, donor-centered communications. Show your donors how much they matter, how much they are appreciated, and how much more impact they can have by continuing to support your nonprofit’s work.Keeping donors engaged doesn’t have to be difficult. Timely, personalized thank you letters and monthly impact reports make a huge difference. Tell your donors something their gift has accomplished. Share with them some of your plans for the coming month, and thank them for their continued support. (Hint: Use your donor management system to send more targeted messages to smaller segments of donors, sorted by giving level or program, for example.)To make it easy for fundraisers like you who have the best intentions, but very little time, we’ve created a free fill-in-the-blanks Donor Messaging Kit. With it, you can create your monthly email plan in just a few minutes. It’s really simple—just jot down a few key points about your nonprofit, and a year’s worth of donor stewardship emails are ready to go!  Get your copy today!last_img read more

Year-End Countdown, Week 2: Top 10 Free Year-End Fundraising Resources

first_imgOn-Demand Webinars:2. Five Easy Steps to a Stronger Year-End Campaign1. Seven Secrets to Wildly Better Donor Retention Guides and Templates:6. How to Write Amazing Year-End Fundraising Appeals5. Last Minute Tips for Year-End Success4. The Ultimate December Fundraising Checklist3. Year-End Appeals for Procrastinators Over 11% of all annual giving occurs during the last three days of the year—which is next week.Are you ready?If you’re not feeling quite in the giving season spirit yet, don’t worry.There’s still time to take advantage of the year’s biggest fundraising opportunity.Whether you’ve had your campaign planned for months, or you need to throw something together at the last minute, we’re here to help.Here’s a rundown of Network for Good’s top 10 free year-end fundraising resources:Articles:10. December Fundraising Dos and Don’ts9. Eight Ways to Make the Most of Your Year-End Fundraising Campaign8. Four Donor Communication Mistakes to Avoid in Year-End Giving Plans7. How to Create Year-End Content Your Supporters Will Sharelast_img read more

Owen: Shearer blaming me for his Newcastle failure

first_imgMichael Owen believes Alan Shearer is blaming him for his own failure as Newcastle manager as the pair’s public spat continues.The Magpies legend criticised his former team-mate on Twitter this week after the former revealed in an interview that he regretted joining the club from Real Madrid in 2005.Owen spent four years with Newcastle and made 79 appearances before he left to join Manchester United after the Tyneside outfit were relegated from the Premier League while Shearer was in charge as caretaker manager. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? After responding to Shearer’s jibe by suggesting he was not as loyal to Newcastle as he would have many believe, Owen believes his fellow ex-England star is still struggling to come to terms with his managerial shortcomings. Owen told ESPN: “If Alan Shearer has come to the conclusion that I didn’t fancy playing in the last game against Aston Villa because I was worried about getting injured and subsequently worried about my next move then, if that’s what’s in his head and that’s how he’s overcome his disappointment of not being a success as Newcastle manager, then that’s fine in a way,””It’s almost like a grieving period and sometimes you’ve got to blame someone else.”I’ve done it loads of times in my life. Do you think I’ve come off a pitch and said ‘I’ve been rubbish today, it’s all my fault?’ No way. You’ll never be a footballer if you’re like that.”You think ‘well the right-back can’t pass for toffee, the midfielder is not creative enough, my strike partner is not seeing my run’, whatever you think.”Very rarely if you’re right at the top of the game do you blame yourself.”As I say, it’s a compliment to Alan Shearer. He’s had to find some way of not blaming himself, I guess, for what happened with Newcastle.”But I find it hard that he’s come to the decision to blame me for it when I was hardly fit in the period he took over, and then I actually put my body on the line in the last game when really I was a week or two away from being fit from a groin injury.”So I get it, I don’t agree with it. I don’t think that he will ever change his mind, change his view, so I almost think that bit is pointless.”Owen admitted that he has considered resolving his differences with Shearer since they went their separate ways after that disastrous 2008-09 campaign, but he believes any attempt would be in vain.”I’ve often thought of it. A few years ago, I knew I was going to be in the same room doing TV with him and I thought about speaking to him then,” he added.”But he’s a strong personality and so am I. I’m not going to change his mind.”To be honest, I’m pretty surprised it hasn’t come out before because we haven’t spoken for a long period of time now, sadly.”We were big mates prior to him taking charge of Newcastle but that was the turning point really and since then we haven’t been big mates, let’s say.” Check out Goal’s Premier League 2019-20 fantasy football podcast for game tips, debate and rivalries.last_img read more

Olympic champion Semenya signs for South African football club

first_imgOlympic champion Caster Semenya is set to play football in 2020 after joining South African club JVW.A two-time Olympic gold medallist in the 800 metres, Semenya could make her football debut next year.JVW, who are owned by South Africa women’s captain Janine van Wyk, announced the signing of the 28-year-old on Thursday. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? “I am grateful for this opportunity and I appreciate the love and support I already get from the team,” Semenya said in a statement.”I am looking forward to this new journey, and hopefully I can contribute as much as I can to the club.”Semenya’s atheltics career has been plagued by issues surrounding her testosterone levels and she won’t be allowed to compete at the 2019 World Athletics Championships in Doha later this year. The situation has left Semenya frustrated and she hopes her case can set an example for future generations. “We are all human. It doesn’t matter what differences that we have in our bodies,” she told  BBC Sport  in July.”At the end of the day, sport unites people and it speaks to the youth in a language they understand.”I cannot say I’ve been victimised. I think I set an example. I think I’m in this world for a reason. I think I am a living testimony.”  Semenya will train with JVW but cannot make her debut in the SAFA Sasol Women’s League until 2020 due to the transfer window being closed.Van Wyk, who recently left JVW for Danish club Fortuna Hjorring, welcomed the signing of 2012 and 2016 Olympic champion Semenya.”I am extremely elated to have such an iconic athlete join my football club,” she said.”I am absolutely honoured that out of all the other women’s clubs around the world, she has chosen JVW as the club where she would like to start showcasing her football skills.”I welcomed her at her first training with the team on Tuesday, and was impressed to see that she definitely has all the fundamentals.”I look forward to her working with coach Ciara [Picco] and our first team where I am sure she will sharpen up and get ready to play in 2020.”Although I won’t be here for the rest of the year, as I have just signed with Fortuna Hjorring, I have no doubt that Caster will fit right in, and enjoy her time at the club.”last_img read more

Kirk Herbstreit Names The Best Player In College Football Through Week 5

first_img That’s right. Not Tua Tagovailoa or Jalen Hurts. Not Justin Fields or Joe Burrow. Instead, Herbstreit goes with Oklahoma State running back Chuba Hubbard.Hubbard’s produced some video game like stats through five games this season. The junior back has 938 yards on 128 carries and 10 touchdowns this year. He’s averaging 7.3 yards per carry.Hubbard’s best game came last week against Kansas State. He ran the ball 25 times for 296 yards and one touchdown. The week before, Hubbard had 121 yards and two touchdowns versus Texas.Herbstreit’s been impressed with Hubbard to start the season. In a year with multiple elite quarterbacks, Oklahoma State’s RB is starting to steal the show.Will Hubbard be a Heisman candidate later this year? ESPN college football analyst Kirk Herbstreit.NEW YORK, NY – SEPTEMBER 23: GameDay host Kirk Herbstreit is seen during ESPN’s College GameDay show at Times Square on September 23, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)College football fans pay attention when Kirk Herbsreit shares his opinion. He’s become one of the sport’s most notable voices and personalities.Herbstreit has a Twitter tradition of naming teams of the week which impressed him most. Sometimes, he throws in a few players or coaches who had breakout performances. But he typically never mentions one individual player who he deems ‘the best’ — that is, until Tuesday evening on an ESPN segment.Herbstreit was asked who the best player in college football is through five weeks. His answer is not a player many people are talking about.Kirk Herbstreit says #OKState’s Chuba Hubbard has been College Football’s best player so far this season.— Cayden McFarland (@caydenmc) October 1, 2019last_img read more

Timing makes for awkward Leagues Cup for Galaxy

first_imgThe LA Galaxy’s roster for Tuesday night’s Leagues Cup semifinal against Cruz Azul came out Monday. It later was ‘corrected’ with a few changes that drew the eye – and they weren’t the swap from Justin Vom Steeg to Erik Lopez as third goalkeeper or the sudden omission of LA Galaxy II defender Justin Fiddes.Now on the roster, after missing the initial list, are forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic and winger Cristian Pavon. Previously Ethan Zubak (Total MLS minutes: 40) was the only forward listed on the roster, and even after the changes midfielder Jonathan dos Santos and several other Galaxy regulars aren’t even in the squad for the semifinal.The first roster still seems like a pretty good indication Ibra and Pavon will make at best cameos and could still miss out on the contest all together. While Cruz Azul likely will put out a strong side, as it did with its best XI in a 2-0 win over the Chicago Fire in the quarterfinal the Galaxy are unlikely to do the same. Article continues below Editors’ Picks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Are Chelsea this season’s Ajax? Super-subs Batshuayi & Pulisic show Blues can dare to dream It’s worth noting, though, that the roster isn’t all that different from the squad the Galaxy used to get here in the first place. While the Galaxy won 3-1 on penalties in a highly entertaining contest against Club Tijuana that finished 2-2 after 90 minutes, it was hardly their best team. Zubak started that game. So too did Kai Koreniuk, who is still awaiting his MLS debut, and back-up goalkeeper Matt Lampson.LA Galaxy coach Guillermo Barros Schelotto doesn’t seem to be down on the tournament in general. “It’s a good idea. I think we can learn from each other,” he insisted Monday. But it’s unlikely he’ll put much of a priority on Tuesday’s game with the Galaxy in the midst of an arduous stretch of schedule and with a rivalry match against LAFC coming Sunday in league play.”Unfortunately, the calendar isn’t working in our favor. We came in playing every three days, this is the fourth game we’re going to play. Honestly, there are players who need rest,” he said Monday at a news conference. “Pavon got here, he played three days later, then he played again three days later. It could hurt him, because he could get injured, but also for the team not having him at 100 percent.”You can’t obligate him to play, keeping in mind as well that Sunday we’re playing our derby against LAFC, which is an important game not only with the context of playing the other team in the city but also the points we can get are important for our future.”Galaxy Tijuana Leagues Cup 2019Thing is, the only way the Leagues Cup final will be compelling is if the Galaxy are able to top their visitors from Mexico City. The whole point of the Leagues Cup, a tournament introduced this year with three rounds but set to expand to eight teams from each MLS and Liga MX next year, is to have interleague competition. A final featuring Mexican teams? We’ve seen it before. Not only do Cruz Azul and America play in the same league and meet twice a year, they also have met in the last two playoffs. Each team now calls the historic Estadio Azteca home, creating exciting atmospheres What hope does a mid-September game in Las Vegas have of maintaining the same intensity of matches played in the Azteca with the right to get one step closer to the Liga MX title? Or a game between Cruz Azul and Tigres, another matchup we see regularly in league play but with even less of a hint of rivalry?Schelotto didn’t ask for his team to be the only MLS side to make it through, and other MLS teams put more effort into getting through to this stage. Nevertheless, the Galaxy are now flying the MLS flag, whether it’s the banner they want over their heads or not.”Obviously … It’s not that we have an obligation, but, yes, we know we’re the only MLS team left in this competitions and we have to try to get to the final,” Schelotto said. “We’ll try to do that (Tuesday), knowing that we have a near-future with a lot of important games in the league ahead of us. This is game we want to take on with all the seriousness it deserves and try to win.”Taking it seriously is one thing. Going all-out is another. Leagues Cup is here to stay, but if an understrength Galaxy can upset an historic Mexico team hoping to win a trophy will go a long way toward determining whether the first edition is seen as a forgettable false start or the appetizer for a tasty main course of competitive tournaments in the future.last_img read more

Deepika Padukone: If I had to play a sportsperson, then it would be my father

first_img India Today Web Desk New DelhiJune 27, 2019UPDATED: June 27, 2019 12:20 IST Deepika Padukone with father Prakash Padukone.Deepika Padukone is set to play the role of Kapil Dev’s wife Romi Bhatia in 83. Deepika’s real-life husband Ranveer Singh is playing the role of Kapil Dev in the film.Deepika’s father Prakash Padukone is a former Indian badminton player. He was ranked World No. 1 in 1980 and has been awarded with Arjuna award in 1972 and the Padma Shri in 1982. Like her father, Deepika too pursued a career in professional badminton but soon opted for acting instead.Since Deepika comes from a sports background and is playing an essential part in a sports biopic – 83, the actress might want to play a sports person on the big screen.In conversation with Bombay Times, the actress revealed that she wants to play her father Prakash Padukone on the big screen. She said, “I understand the gender issue (smiles). But if I had to play a sportsperson, then it would be him or any sports legend from that era. That’s because of what they achieved in the circumstances, within the limited exposure and knowledge versus the kind of funds, facilities and visibility available to athletes today. But in spite of all that, to achieve that greatness and legendary status is commendable. Our yesteryear athletes inspire me.”The film 83 essays Kapil’s captaincy in leading the Indian cricket team to defeat the West Indies in the World Cup final in 1983. The film is directed by Kabir Khan and produced by Reliance Entertainment.Before 83, Ranveer Singh and Deepika Padukone have worked together in three films- Goliyon Ki Rasleela Ram-Leela (2013), Bajirao Mastani (2015) and Padmaavat (2018). Ranveer also did a cameo role in Deepika’s 2014 released film Finding Fanny.In an earlier interview with Times of India, Deepika said that even if there was someone else essaying the role of Kapil Dev, she would still play his wife Romi Bhatia.”The personal equation doesn’t spill over into the workspace. I can’t think of anyone else who could do justice to the role of Kapil Dev, but if there was someone else playing him in the film, and not Ranveer, I would still do my part,” she said.”This isn’t coming from a personal equation, but from my passion and enthusiasm for the film,” the actress, who is also co-producing 83, added.Apart from 83, Deepika will also be seen in Meghna Gulzar’s Chhapaak. She recently wrapped up the shooting of the film. It also stars Vikrant Massey.Also Read | Deepika Padukone on playing Ranveer Singh’s wife in 83: This isn’t coming from a personal equationALSO READ | Will Deepika Padukone play Ranveer Singh’s wife in 83?ALSO READ | Kapil Dev on Ranveer Singh’s 83: India was not ready to make sports films 20 years agoALSO READ | 83: Ranveer Singh to live with Kapil Dev in Delhi for 10 daysALSO WATCH | Ranveer Singh makes Delhi dance to Gully Boy at India Today Conclave 2019Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted byVibha Maru Tags :Follow Deepika PadukoneFollow Ranveer Singh Deepika Padukone: If I had to play a sportsperson, then it would be my fatherDeepika Padukone, who will play the role of Kapil Dev’s wife Romi Bhatia in 83, says that she wants to star in sports biopic of her father Prakash Padukone or any sports legend from that era.advertisementlast_img read more

Wright lauds ‘Malcolm X generation’ England

first_imgIan Wright slammed UEFA after England’s 6-0 demolition of Bulgaria in Euro 2020 qualifying was marred by racist chanting, describing the governing body as “like a monkey’s tea party” and saying they do not care about punishing such behaviour.With abuse directed towards Raheem Sterling and debutant Tyrone Mings, the game was twice halted by the match referee in alignment with UEFA’s three-step protocol. Wright was effusive in his praise of England’s conduct throughout.At one point, it seemed the match would likely be abandoned despite large numbers of home fans having left the ground following warnings over the stadium tannoy system. Editors’ Picks Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Are Chelsea this season’s Ajax? Super-subs Batshuayi & Pulisic show Blues can dare to dream Time for another transfer? Giroud’s Chelsea spell set to end like his Arsenal career “What we have seen happen today is we’ve seen that guy in the picture, Tyrone Mings, this could have been a day, had we not been able to implement the protocol, his debut would have been marred,” Wright said on ITV after the game.“It would have been a racial incident and it would have finished like that. That doesn’t happen [here].“This is a seminal moment, a fantastic moment. You know, I feel for the Bulgarian people, I genuinely do, but what you’ve got to look at is the [anti-racism] banners on the other side of the stadium, half closed down – it does nothing.“We have said it for many years. UEFA do not really deep down care about the kind of punishment they put out. This should have been in place ten years ago, 20 years ago.”England Bulgaria Euro 2020 QualifyingWright spoke about his own experiences of suffering racist abuse as a player, praising the conduct of the England squad.He drew parallels with civil rights activists Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X as he explained how such an approach was a step forward in the fight against discrimination in football.“Now we’ve seen what’s happened and what’s good about it is it has got a generation of players now, not just black players, a generation of players and people that won’t tolerate it any more,” Wright said.“My generation was a generation of ‘turn the other cheek’, Martin Luther King, this is the generation of ‘by any means necessary’, a Malcolm X generation.“They don’t need to take that no more. They’ve got their own platforms, now they’ve got the protocol to stick to. This is a great day, I feel really good watching this.“So many games, you’ve played games like this where you’ve had this kind of racial thing going on and people say ‘just beat them on the pitch’ – it doesn’t do anything!“Don’t beat them on the pitch, I’ve scored two goals against teams and they’ve still given me racial abuse, you don’t win. Today, they won. They’ve won today, because they had to leave.”last_img read more

4A GSHL receives extra football playoff berth

first_img Buy this Photo Skyview and Battle Ground, playing here last year, both missed out on the state football playoffs in recent years after finishing third in the 4A Greater St. Helens League. (Alisha Jucevic/The Columbian) A year ago, Skyview’s football team had its lengthy playoff streak snapped by finishing third in the 4A Greater St. Helens League.The year before that, Battle Ground sat home for the postseason despite one of its best records in school history.The door is open again for a third playoff-bound team in the 4A GSHL, thanks to Redmond High School.Redmond’s decision to appeal its classification, and the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association approval of the opt-up request, benefits the 4A GSHL by giving the league an extra playoff berth for football. Share: @MegWochnick By Meg Wochnick, Columbian staff writer Published: August 27, 2018, 6:08pm By signing up you are agreeing to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. “The math worked out in our favor,” he said, “which is great to see.”The five-school 4A GSHL — Battle Ground, Camas, Heritage, Skyview and Union — sent two teams to the Week 10 state preliminary round the past two years.District 4 received one state allocation when the WIAA’s four-year classification cycle rolled out three years ago. After that, the district grouped with Districts 1, 2, 3 to receive a second Week 10 berth.In 2016, Battle Ground went 7-2, its third-place finish in league kept the Tigers home.Last season, Skyview (5-4) finished third, ending its 12-year postseason streak. (360) 735-4521 Receive latest stories and local news in your email: GO Meg Wochnick Columbian staff writer 4A GSHL receives extra football playoff berth Share: The three playoff berths goes into effect this season and for 2019, the final school year of the WIAA’s four-year reclassification cycle that ends in spring 2020, said Cale Piland, athletic director for Evergreen Public Schools.When the WIAA increased its classification cycle from two years to four years in 2015-16, it said a school may appeal its classification after two years based on enrollment.That’s what Redmond did, and the WIAA granted the request to rejoin Class 4A as part of the KingCo League in District 2.That reshuffled the playoff-berth calculations just enough to give Southwest Washington’s District 4 an extra allocation, Piland said.last_img read more

Elliott uses Dover win to earn berth in next NASCAR playoff round

first_img Chase Elliott, front left, poses with the trophy in Victory Lane after he won a NASCAR Cup Series auto race, Sunday, Oct. 7, 2018, at Dover International Speedway in Dover, Del. (AP Photo/Nick Wass) Photo Gallery Published: October 7, 2018, 3:58pm Denny Hamlin was second, followed by playoff driver Joey Logano. NASCAR playoff drivers took 10 of the top 15 spots.SHR was in control with Kevin Harvick early and Almirola late.Harvick led 286 laps and was on pace to sweep the Dover races until tire issues derailed his run and he finished sixth. Almirola, who led 64 laps late and had his second career Cup win in sight, was running sixth off a restart when he got loose and connected with Brad Keselowski. That triggered a multi-car wreck that collected championship contenders and brought out the red flag to force overtime.“We were just lucky there and wound up dodging and weaving and being in the right place,” Harvick said. “I guess that makes up for the bad luck of losing the race with an absolute dominant car.”Almirola had lost the lead when Bowyer wrecked. Elliott was third when he stayed out on yellow, and would lead the final 11 laps. Johnson’s bid for a record eighth NASCAR Cup title ended last week when he was eliminated from the playoffs. His No. 48 Chevrolet was forced to the garage at Dover during the pace laps because of mechanical woes and he finished 36th.Johnson, who holds the Dover record with 11 wins, was an early hit when he dropped off 12 kids’ bikes at Martin Truex Jr’s hauler as an apology of sorts for triggering a wreck last week at Charlotte that denied both drivers a shot at a win.BIG BETElliott had 12-1 odds in the first-ever race where legalized sports betting happened at the track.Dover International Speedway opened its on-site betting kiosk this weekend and became the only track that allowed sports gambling on its property. NASCAR does not prohibit its drivers or team members from betting on the race. DOVER, Del. — Chase Elliott had been burdened by lofty expectations that come as the son of a Hall of Fame driver and the replacement of a four-time NASCAR champion.As the close calls and frustrating finishes mounted, and wins eluded him, the 22-year-old Elliott could feel the pressure tighten each time he slipped into the No. 9 Chevrolet.But once Elliott raced to his first Cup win, the second victory wasn’t far behind, and now the Hendrick Motorsports star pegged as NASCAR’s next most popular driver is thinking championship.“There isn’t any reason why we can’t make a run at this deal,” Elliott said. GO Follow The Columbian on Instagram It was one big celebration on Sunday.“When he won the race at Watkins Glen, it was like the world was lifted off his shoulders,” Hendrick said.Bill Elliott did not attend the race, but with more races like this one, it’s not hard to imagine son eventually eclipsing dad’s mark of one Cup championship.“I think this only elevates his game,” Gordon said.Elliott’s win means he can breathe a bit easier as the series shifts to treacherous Talladega, where anything can happen on the superspeedway. The top eight drivers after the next two races move on to the next round and Aric Almirola, Clint Bowyer, Kyle Larson and Alex Bowman are stuck below the cutoff with two races left in the round of 12.“We’ve had so many opportunities and been so close and had the car to win and been in position and I don’t know, it just seems to not come through,” Almirola said. Share: By signing up you are agreeing to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. “I think that was our best opportunity to win the race, and it was our best opportunity to score the most points we could score,” crew chief Alan Gustafson said. “Even if Denny would have passed us, which was certainly a possibility, it was still going to yield us more points than I think it would have had we pitted.”They got the points, the win — and a championship hope still alive and well.Here are other items of note from Dover.JIMMIE’S RIDEHendrick said there could be an announcement in the next month for Johnson’s new 2019 sponsor.Lowe’s, which had been on the hood for all seven championships, said this year it was leaving the sport and Hendrick had yet to find another sponsor.“It’s really hard when you have someone that’s so successful but they’ve been tied to one brand for a long time,” Hendrick said. By DAN GELSTON, Associated Press Receive latest stories and local news in your email: Elliott stayed off pit road during a late caution and avoided similar disasters that struck the Stewart-Haas Racing drivers to pull away and win in overtime Sunday at Dover International Speedway. Elliott earned an automatic berth into the next round of the NASCAR Cup playoffs.Eight races after his first win at Watkins Glen, Elliott was back in victory lane again — another needed dose of good news for NASCAR following the rousing success of the roval race last week at Charlotte.Elliott bounded over the wall and high-fived Gordon, the driver he replaced in 2016, and shared a big hug with team owner Rick Hendrick. A year ago at Dover, Elliott coughed up the lead with two laps left to Kyle Busch, in what he called the most crushing defeat of his career.He left that race 0 for 70 in Cup.Elliott rubbed his head and leaned against his car, crestfallen as he replayed the final laps in his mind. Jimmie Johnson walked over to offer some encouragement and let Elliott vent. Share: NASCAR President Steve Phelps said the series is set to implement guidelines in the rulebook on sports betting in 2019.UP NEXTThe series heads to Talladega where Keselowski is the defending race winner. Team Penske drivers Keselowski and Logano have combined to win five of the last seven races at Talladega. Elliott uses Dover win to earn berth in next NASCAR playoff round Surprise winner comes after late wrecks Follow 2 Photoslast_img read more

NHL draft, All-Stars coming to Seattle

first_img GO By signing up you are agreeing to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. NHL draft, All-Stars coming to Seattle Commissioner does not say when events are coming to city SEATTLE — On his first trip to Seattle since the city was granted the NHL’s 32nd franchise, Commissioner Gary Bettman announced a couple more rewards for the future franchise’s investment.Bettman said the league has promised Seattle it will host All-Star weekend within its first seven seasons, with the team slated to begin play in 2021-22. Bettman also says Seattle will host the NHL draft, and that event will likely be awarded before the All-Star Game arrives.“It doesn’t mean we are going to wait seven years,” Bettman said. “We’re going to be bringing league events here. This is where we want to be.”Bettman’s unexpected and informal announcement was part of his first visit to Seattle since the franchise was approved by the league’s Board of Governors in early December. Bettman met with members of the ownership group, political leaders in the city, fans who have placed deposits on season tickets and reviewed the status of the massive renovation of the arena at Seattle Center where the team will play. Share: Leiweke said the team’s goal is to have a portal launched within the next 60 days for season-ticket depositors to provide feedback and to inform them of the timeframe for decisions and announcements moving forward.“If I have my way, their fingerprints are going to be all over this franchise. Certainly a team name, but they’re going to help us build this,” Leiweke said.Some fans are hoping to see a return of the Seattle Metropolitans — a historic name in Seattle, since the Metropolitans won the Stanley Cup in 1917. That name might be off the table, though, since the NHL has a division with that name.Bettman was asked if that name can be ruled out.“Viscerally, yes,” he said, “but I never say never to anything.” Seattle’s ownership group has put up over $1.5 billion in expansion fees, upgrades to the building formerly known as KeyArena, and a state-of-the-art practice facility that is expected to open in time to host the first training camp.“If you talk about in terms of kicking the tires, the tires are in great shape,” Bettman said. “We couldn’t be more excited. When the board made the decision to come to Seattle, we knew it was the right decision, it would be a great decision and everything that has transpired has not only lived up to expectation but has exceeded our expectations.”The franchise initially hoped to open for the 2020 season, but it is using the additional year to ensure the arena is operational well ahead of the team’s home opener. It also gives the team more time to put together its hockey staff.The team still doesn’t have a name or color scheme. Bettman said the league would mostly stay out of the selection process, aside from working with the Seattle franchise in colors, trademarks and other logistical parts of the expansion name. Seattle team president and CEO Tod Leiweke said the goal is to have a name announced by the middle of 2019. The franchise will be taking major input from fans that have put deposits down on season tickets. Published: January 9, 2019, 7:13pm NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman, center, joins Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly, left, and Tod Leiweke, right, president and CEO of the Seattle Hockey Partners group, Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2019, during a news conference in Seattle. Bettman said the NHL has promised Seattle it will host the hockey All-Star Game within its first seven seasons. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren) Photo Gallery Receive latest stories and local news in your email: By TIM BOOTH, Associated Press 3 Photos Share:last_img read more

Boys basketball: Woodland 78, Hockinson 75

first_img The Columbian Boys basketball: Woodland 78, Hockinson 75 Tags Receive latest stories and local news in your email: GO WOODLAND 78, HOCKINSON 75WOODLAND — Kyle Groce 7, Jackson Finn 4, Brady Burns 0, Isaiah Flanagan 22, Isaac Hall 2, Tyler Flanagan 24, Trace Logan 12, Trey Hanson 7. Totals 29 (9) 11-16 78.HOCKINSON — Micah Paulsen 7, Dakota Souders 3, Mason Bonife 0, Peyton Brammer 50, Ki Haden 7, Sawyer Racanelli 6, Levi Crum 0, Caleb Newman 0, Jeremiah Faulstick 2. Totals 30 (2) 13-15 75.Woodland 22 17 23 16–78Hockinson 18 14 20 23–75JV — Hockinson won. Share:center_img Hockinson HawksWoodland Beavers Tyler Flanagan scored 24 points and the Beavers ended their season with a road win.Isaiah Flanagan added 22 points for Woodland (8-12, 4-8), which had lost four straight.Peyton Brammer scored 50 points, but it wasn’t enough for Hockinson (9-11, 5-7). In three games since returning from broken foot, Brammer has scored 29, 40 and now 50 points.Hockinson finished league play tied for third with Ridgefield, which won a coin flip to gain the No. 3 seed to the district tournament.Hockinson, the No. 4 seed, will play at Evergreen Conference champ Black Hills on Saturday. Ridgefield plays at Aberdeen.Woodland led 62-52 after three quarters. Though it was a one-possession game at several times down the stretch, Woodland made enough free throws to hold off Hockinson. Published: February 6, 2019, 11:20pm By signing up you are agreeing to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. Share:last_img read more

U by Uniworld – The River Cruise for the Millennial and Active Traveler

first_imgInterview with Ellen Bettridge, President & CEO of Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection Interview By: Angela Ogg, Contributing Editor for Travel Professional NEWS® The Millennial market is in no doubt a hot topic of discussion. Seeing suppliers provide new offerings that appeal to our Millennial generation isn’t only important, but exciting.  The U by Uniworld is the first of it’s kind and I was excited to learn more about this new line, it’s offering and it’s customization catered to the Millennial generation. First and foremost, thank you for making the time to speak with us at Travel Professional NEWS® regarding the very exciting and new offering by Uniworld, U by Uniworld! We are excited to share this information with Travel Professionals and see the market grow with this new offering! What kind of itineraries can we expect to see offered on this new line?U offers nine itineraries total. Four eight-day itineraries—Rolling On The Rhine, Germany’s Finest, The Danube Flow and The Seine Experience—sail the Rhine, Main, Danube and Seine Rivers, with overnight stops and longer stays in major cities like Paris, Vienna, Amsterdam and Budapest. Three Super Cruise options combine two or more U itineraries into one 15 or 22-day bucket list journey. U by Uniworld also offers two five-day holiday itineraries–Dashing Through The Danube and A Merry Little Christmas Cruise–for those who want to experience the magic of Christmastime in Europe and a special New Year’s Eve celebration. What kind of features can one expect to see on these new U by Uniworld ships? There will be enhanced technology and screens onboard the U ships to engage travelers, encouraging them to connect at every point of their journey through pictures and more. The A and The B offer three room categories—Studio, Balcony and Suites—all with river views. Suites featuring French balconies and a living room area are perfect for honeymooners and those celebrating a special occasion. Balcony rooms are ideal for pairs, and groups of friends traveling together can enjoy Studio rooms that can accommodate up to three passengers. Solo travelers can take advantage of single rooms or special room share rates. What is the inspiration of the  design of these new U by Uniworld ships?The inspiration behind the design of the ships is the demographic they are serving. Two Uniworld ships have been taken out of rotation, the River Ambassador and the River Baroness, to be renovated. The key public spaces and top deck will be changed to cater to a younger demographic with more communal space for travelers to connect. The ships will sport an eye-catching, sleek all-black exterior and more open, contemporary interiors will feature a black and white color scheme.  What is your key demographic with this new offering? U by Uniworld is exclusively offered to travelers aged 21-45. Will there be any new training or information available to Travel Professionals looking to offer this new line?Uniworld has partnered with Questex to offer a Travel Agent University program for travel agents who are learning to sell the Uniworld brand using more in-depth knowledge of the product. With the launch of U, this program will expand its selling techniques to include tips on how to sell U. The U by Uniworld is quite the concept, can you tell us a bit about this new offering, as well as what inspired its creation?U features excursions and programming for every type of traveler, whether it’s guided tours or independent exploration. Those who want a guided, structured excursion will enjoy strolling through Paris at midnight, or going on a scavenger hunt in the Louvre. Those craving independent exploration will be handed a subway ticket and a map of the city to go off and explore on their own with suggestions from our local hosts. Ships will stay docked in ports overnight so guests can experience the local nightlife, with dedicated “U Hosts” available on every itinerary to guide you in the right direction. Since U encourages travelers to experience nightlife abroad, daytime excursions will start later in the day. Cuisine will revolve around creativity and dining will be more communal, while maintaining Uniworld’s high standards of quality, authenticity and choice for all dietary restrictions. We were inspired to create this new brand in order to provide a previously untapped generation of river cruisers with the opportunity to see the world in a completely different way, with a product designed specifically for them. We all know that the Millennial is a hot topic; can you give us your opinion on why Travel Professionals should be focusing their efforts on this growing demographic?We have learned through a series of focus groups that millennials are eager to experience river cruising and are drawn to its attributes. Like all generations, Millennials are constantly bombarded with information, and while peer endorsements are influential in decision-making, there is also a great opportunity for travel professionals to showcase their value as true experts. There is so much out there on social media that doesn’t necessarily represent an experience in its entirety, making a trusted resource who can cut through the clutter all the more important.  What can we expect in the future for U by Uniworld line?We hope to continue to bring like-minded travelers together to the heart of European cities and allow them to explore in a way that best suits them. Ultimately, we wish to become so successful that we need to continue expanding with more ships and more itineraries. We appreciate your time and insight on this topic, do you have any last words you would like to share to the Travel Professionals reading this interview?U by Uniworld is the first river cruise of its kind, and our focus remains on driving innovation and continuing to exceed travelers’ expectations, which we are constantly doing by redesigning the existing fleet of ships, introducing new Super Ships and enhancing onboard and onshore programming to further elevate the luxury experience. We value our relationships with travel professionals immensely and are excited to get their feedback on this new product. The U by Uniworld definitely stands out as a very strong option for the Millennial traveler looking for a unique experience. I hope that my husband and I can take advantage of one of these fantastic ships in the future! We hope you enjoyed this look into the U by Uniworld offering.  SaveSaveSaveSavelast_img read more

Traveltek’s Tour Operator Technology Powers Record Year for Sandals Trade Sales

first_imgJune 7th, 2018 – Only one year since Traveltek implemented its bespoke tour operating platform for Sandals in-house tour operator, Unique Caribbean Holidays Ltd. (UCHL), the company has reported a significant increase in trade sales of 20%. Back in 2017 at the launch of the company’s new tour operation, UCHL Managing Director, Karl Thompson was positive that Traveltek’s tour operator technology was set to transform their business and noted: “Traveltek has played a major role in helping us achieve our business goals and set us on the right path for future growth in 2017 and beyond.” Now, a year on, it seems that UCHL’s first year goal has been accomplished.  Reflecting on the success of the past year, Thompson commented: “Our business from the UK overall has grown, with the trade business exceeding our expectations.  We would like to thank everybody who continues to support us.” Over 30% of all agent bookings from April 2017 to date have been made online via the trade booking engine implemented by Traveltek, with many agents booking the all-inclusive resorts for their clients for the first time. The tailor-made travel technology was built according to a complex brief with the main focus placed on improving the user experience. Bespoke features played a major role in achieving this ambition. Design was also taken into consideration, with the inventory now presented to the end user in an appealing and consistent fashion across all customer touchpoints, incorporating UCHL brand values to inspire engagement and loyalty. Following the initial launch, development has been ongoing, with the addition of flight and price availability calendars, which enable agents to see package prices on a monthly view, proving to have a huge impact on the agent and consumer experience.  The next stage in the process is to give agents the opportunity to book twin-centre holidays on the trade website, following an increase in demand. Thompson added that the operator will continue to investigate buying behaviour and will work with its partners to facilitate how agents want to book their holidays in the future – Traveltek will be at their side every step of the way.last_img read more