Daily Archive : Saturday September 8, 2012


    Naperville Central High School competes at the 34th annual Lancer Joust Marching Band Competition at Lake Park High School, West Campus, in Roselle on Saturday.

    Lake Park Lancer Joust is marching bands’ first big test

    The 34th annual Lake Park Lancer Joust is a marching band festival, but everyone involved knows there's much more to the event than stepping across a football field. "You get a lot of goose bumps. ... You can tell at the end if it's a good show by how everyone is smiling," said Becky Steele, drum major of the Waubonsie Valley High School marching Warriors.


    Report: 2 Second City alums headed to ‘SNL’

    The Second City continues to be Lorne Michaels' first choice when recruiting new talent for "Saturday Night Live." According to The Hollywood Reporter, two alums of Chicago's legendary haven of comedy are close to joining the cast of "SNL," which is about to begin its 38th season.

    The Dunham-Hunt House at Cedar and Third avenues in St. Charles is back on the market but needs many repairs.

    Dunham-Hunt House back on the market

    The Dunham-Hunt House in St. Charles is back on the market, and can be had for a little less than $200,000 ... but it needs lots of work, columnist Dave Heun says.

    Associated Press/Aug. 30 An Army carry team moves a transfer case containing the remains of Pfc. Shane W. Cantu of Corunna, Mich., at Dover Air Force Base, Del.

    War-weary U.S. numb to drumbeat of troop deaths

    It was another week at war in Afghanistan, another string of American casualties, and another collective shrug by a nation weary of a faraway conflict whose hallmark is its grinding inconclusiveness.

    A woman places flowers Saturday next to a photo of Albert Afraid of Hawk at his wake service in Manderson, S.D. Afraid of Hawk, a member of the Oglala Sioux Tribe, died 112 years ago while performing with Buffalo Bill’s Wild West show.

    Buffalo Bill performer reburied at S.D. reservation

    The remains of a man who died young while touring the world with Buffalo Bill were hidden for more than a century in an unmarked grave some 1,700 miles from his South Dakota Indian reservation.

    Dark clouds loom Saturday over the New York skyline.

    Two tornadoes touch down in NYC

    Two tornadoes struck New York City on Saturday, one swept out of the sea and hit a beachfront neighborhood and the second, stronger twister hit moments later, hurling debris in the air, knocking out power and startling residents who once thought of twisters as a Midwestern phenomenon.

    Union members march up Fifth Ave Saturday during the Labor Day parade.

    Steelworkers announce new deal with ArcelorMittal

    The United Steelworkers and ArcelorMittal USA announced on Saturday a tentative agreement on a new three-year contract covering nearly 14,000 workers in eight states.


    Family, truck driver die in Oklahoma storms

    Fierce thunderstorms with strong winds tore through Oklahoma, killing a truck driver and a family whose mobile home was flipped into a creek.

    A overwhelmed Gari Buergin, grandmother to Cpl. Marcus Kuiper, 22, of Barrington welcomes him home Saturday after his second tour in Afghanistan.

    Barrington Marine receives hero’s welcome

    The well-deserved hero's welcome thrown by a crowd of friends and family left Marine Cpl. Marcus Kuiper humble and gracious as he returned to his hometown of Barrington from Afghanistan Saturday afternoon. Loved ones and friends from his Barrington High School days — barely four years earlier — cheered and waved American flags as he took a deep breath, slowly turned around and took it...

    About 300 people donning underpants atop their heads posed for a photo Saturday at Anderson’s Bookshop in downtown Naperville, attempting to create a world record.

    ‘Underpants’ fans attempt world record in Naperville

    Hundreds of pairs of underpants came out of hiding Saturday afternoon in Naperville as "Captain Underpants" fans tried to set a world record for the most people wearing underpants on their heads at one time outside Anderson's Bookshop. Kids and their parents gathered at the store for an appearance by "Captain Underpants" author Dav Pilkey, who stopped in Naperville to sign copies of his new book,...

    A Nicaraguan soldier wears a protective mask Saturday as the San Cristobal volcano, in background, spews smoke and ash, near Chinandega, Nicaragua.

    Nicaragua evacuates 3,000 as volcano spews ash

    The San Cristobal volcano spewed out a column of ash and gas 2½ miles high Saturday, leading Nicaraguan authorities to evacuate about 3,000 people from nine communities around the country's tallest mountain.

    French President Francois Hollande, left, awards British musician Paul McCartney during a decoration ceremony photo session Saturday at the Elysee Palace in Paris.

    Ex-Beatle McCartney gets French legion of honor

    France's Elysee Palace says former Beatle Paul McCartney has been decorated with the legion of honor for services to music.


    Russia rebuffs Clinton on Syria, Iran

    Russia on Saturday soundly rejected U.S. calls for increased pressure on Syrian President Bashar Assad to relinquish power. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton tried to prod Moscow into supporting U.N. action to end the crisis in Syria and she expressed hope that Congress would repeal Cold War-era trade restrictions on Russia.

    A framegrab from a video released by the Taliban containing footage of a man believed to be Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, left.

    Captive U.S. soldier safe, says Haqqani commander

    A U.S. soldier held by Afghan militants will not be harmed despite the Obama administration's decision to declare his alleged captors a terrorist group, a senior member of the Pakistan-based Haqqani network told The Associated Press on Saturday.

    President Barack Obama speaks at a campaign event Saturday in Kissimmee, Fla.

    Obama out to renew magic; Romney hits defense cuts

    Campaigning in a state where the 8.8 percent jobless rate tops the national average, the president made no mention of Friday's government report showing a weak employment outlook for the nation. But he urged people to help him "finish what we started," and he put creating more jobs at the top of his to-do list.


    House, garage fire in Hoffman Estates

    A midafternoon fire extensively damaged a house on Windemere Lane in Hoffman Estates Saturday.

    Children touch the Baltimore Ravens’ Vince Lombardi Trophy from the team’s 2001 Super Bowl championship during a public viewing Saturday of the casket of former Ravens owner Art Modell at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore.

    Notable deaths last week

    Joe Mooshil, who became a fixture on the Chicago sports scene over the course of four decades covering the city’s teams for The Associated Press, has died at age 85.

    An unidentified couple on a Las Vegas Strip sidewalk push a toddler in a stroller Wednesday past a discarded pamphlet advertising exotic dancers.

    Las Vegas tries to clean up X-rated litter

    A new ordinance requires handbillers to pick up litter within a 25-foot radius on the sidewalk. But there's a hitch: The law might run afoul of the First Amendment.


    Northwest Community Hospital opens hospice suite

    Northwest Community Hospital in Arlington Heights has opened a hospice suite with seven beds for patients that need end-of-life care in a hospital setting. "We realized we had a void -- once our patients were ready to go into hospice care, we were sending them to a different facility," said Karen Colby. "We decided we needed to develop a place where they could go and be cared for in a homelike...


    Tri-Cities police
    Fox cop leftovers

    Mark Puccio, a resident of Hoffman Estates and a member of Team Zurich, helps paint Alice Barmann’s house Friday in Schaumburg as part of the Habitat for Hummanity 25th Community Paint-a-thon.

    Northwest suburban homeowners get painting help

    The 25th Community Paint-a-thon is taking place this weekend in 10 north suburban Cook County townships. The event, organized by Arlington Heights-based HandsOn Suburban Chicago in conjunction with Habitat for Humanity and other community organizations, arranges for volunteers to paint the exterior homes of senior citizens, veterans and/or the disabled who have limited financial resources and...

    A young supporter reaches out in an attempt to greet President Barack Obama Friday during a campaign event at Strawbery Banke Museum in Portsmouth, N.H.

    Are you safer now than four years ago?

    WASHINGTON — As Americans debate whether they are better off now than they were four years ago, there is a similar question with a somewhat easier answer: Are you safer now than you were when President Barack Obama took office?By most measures, the answer is yes.

    Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney shakes hands Friday during a campaign rally in Orange City, Iowa. Where the candidates can’t appear in person, there will be ads. Lots of ads.

    Brace for post-convention ad rush

    NEW YORK — Now the campaign ad crush and TV spending spree really begins in the presidential race.The TV ad campaign, with total spending expected to swell to $1.1 billion, starts up again now that the party conventions are over and the two-month sprint to the general election is under way.

    A reproduction of “The Goat Interview” produced in 2011 by emerging Zimbabwean artist Richard Mudariki.

    Johannesburg highlights African art

    JOHANNESBURG — With a profusion of colors, textures and styles, the annual Johannesburg Art Fair highlights artists, galleries and museum collections from across Africa. The fourth annual Johannesburg exhibit showcases work that provokes debate on many of Africa’s social issues.


    Ebola virus spreads in eastern Congo

    Officials in eastern Congo say the Ebola epidemic has spread to a second center after a woman was contaminated during the funeral of a victim of the disease and travelled back to her home.


    Wheeling fire begins in attached garage

    Wheeling firefighters are continuing to investigate a fire that began in the attached garage of a home on the 0-100 block of Strong Friday morning. No one was home at the time, but an owner returned to find the garage fully engulfed in flames, firefighters said.

    The Red Bull Flugtag, which attracted 75,000 people to Chicago’s lakefront in 2008, has been canceled because of marine conditions.

    Unsafe marine conditions cancel flugtag

    The Red Bull Flugtag homemade flying machine contest scheduled to begin this morning at North Avenue Beach in Chicago has been canceled because of unsafe marine conditions, according to the event's website. Strong north winds, significant waves seven to 10 feet tall and occasional waves up to 15 feet are expected along the entire Lake Michigan shore in Illinois, according to the National Weather...


    Northwest suburban police blotter

    Barrington police responded to a report of a driver impersonating a police officer in the area of Main Street and Route 14 Sept. 2, by attempting to pull over a vehicle using blue and red lights located in the rear window of a maroon Ford Crown Victoria. More police reports are in blotter.


    IU prof: No problems with pulled sex research app

    BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — An Indiana University researcher is defending efforts to use smartphone technology to study sexual behaviors around the globe after university attorneys pulled the plug on the project amid privacy concerns.


    Teenage suicide bomber kills 6 in Afghan capital

    KABUL, Afghanistan — A teenage suicide bomber blew himself up outside NATO headquarters in the Afghan capital on Saturday, killing at least six civilians in a strike that targeted the heart of the U.S.-led military operation in the country, officials said.


    China steps up earthquake rescue efforts; 80 dead

    BEIJING — Rescue workers cleared roads Saturday so they could search for survivors and rush aid to a remote mountainous area of southwestern China after twin earthquakes killed at least 80 people.

    Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney arrives for a campaign rally Sept. 7 in Nashua, N.H.

    As Obama, Romney look for an edge, jobless intrude

    ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — President Barack Obama and Republican rival Mitt Romney, their contest defined anew by joblessness, are seeking to frame the campaign on their own terms. Romney was concentrating on the economy while Obama sought to play to his strengths, with top aides all but daring their challenger to engage in a debate over Medicare.

    Kenneth W. Smith Jr., walks near the U.S. Courthouse, Friday, Sept. 7, 2012, in Philadelphia. Smith was arrested and is charged with making a hoax threat that led authorities to recall a plane in midair to the Philadelphia airport. Federal authorities charged 26-year-old Smith Jr. with conveying false and misleading information. According to a criminal complaint, Smith called police at the airport on Thursday, Sept. 6, 2012 and falsely reported a passenger was carrying an explosive substance. Authorities then recalled a Dallas-bound US Airways flight to Philadelphia.

    Philly love triangle leads to plane scare, arrests

    PHILADELPHIA — A bizarre love triangle is to blame for a midair explosives scare that led to an aborted flight and a man being taken into custody twice in two states within about 12 hours, authorities say.

    A test of the Tribute in Light shines skyward over lower Manhattan Sept. 7 in New York. The tribute will shine the night of Tuesday, Sept. 11 over New York, eleven years after the terrorist attacks.

    Obama commemorates anniversary of Sept. 11 attacks

    WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama is asking Americans to mark the 11th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks by remembering how far the nation has come since that day.In his weekly radio and Internet address, Obama is asking people to remember the victims and their families, and to honor the first-responders who risked their lives to help.


    Illinois Lottery launching a new game

    The Illinois Lottery is launching a new game this weekend. The new game, called My3, will go on sale Sunday.


    Chicago employee wellness program gets good start

    CHICAGO — Nearly 80 percent of Chicago city workers and their spouses have signed up for a new wellness program.Mayor Rahm Emanuel's office announced Friday that more than 38,000 employees and spouses have signed up for Chicago Lives Healthy, a program managed by Tennessee-based Healthways Inc.

    Members of the jury that heard the murder trial of former Bolingbrook police officer Drew Peterson from left, alternate juror, Patricia Timke, 68, Jeremy Massey, 26, Teresa Mathews, 49, and jury forman Eduardo Saldana, 22, answer questions during a news conference Sept. 7 in Joliet. The jurors convicted Peterson Thursday of murdering his third wife, Kathleen Savio. He faces a maximum 60-year prison term when sentenced on Nov. 26. Illinois has no death penalty.

    Hearsay bothers last juror to find Peterson guilty

    The final juror to agree to convict Drew Peterson of murder in the death of his ex-wife says he "barely slept" one night during the proceedings because the same nagging questions kept popping into his head. Even after joining fellow members of the panel by casting the last vote for guilty, Ron Supalo remains troubled by the prosecution's reliance on hearsay, statements not based on a witness'...


    Chicago Teachers Union opening strike headquarters

    CHICAGO — The Chicago Teachers Union says it will open a strike headquarters on Saturday in anticipation of a possible walk-out on Monday.Union and district officials also plan to continue contract negotiations at noon Saturday, though a union spokeswoman has said they remain far apart on issues such as job security and pay.

    With a baseball bat attached to home plate, Team “Harry Caray Express” of Batavia is looking forward to Saturday’s Flugtag.

    Suburban teams prepared for today’s “Flugtag”

    They call themselves "Chicago Muppets" or "Shuffling Staches" and are currently busy building planes - but the people who are getting ready for the "Redbull Flugtag" in Chicago on Sept. 8 are no ordinary pilots.


    Home Depot volunteers to improve Lisle VFW

    Troops of volunteers will descend upon the Ross Bishop VFW Post 5696 on Tuesday, Sept. 11. The Lisle VFW received a $12,000 grant from the Home Depot Foundation's Celebration of Service to build an outdoor classroom/deck to benefit its veterans. Our Joan Broz tells us what will happen.

    YouTube screen grab Democratic candidate for Lake County Clerk of the Circuit Court Rupam Dave talks about her campaign on a YouTube video.

    Candidate admits three DUI arrests in past 20 years

    The Democratic candidate for Lake County circuit court clerk has three arrests and one conviction for driving under the influence of alcohol in the past 20 years, she noted on a Daily Herald candidate questionnaire. Rupam Dave said she has learned from her mistakes, and hopes to become a champion against drinking and driving. Her last DUI arrest was seven years ago. "It was a very rotten thing to...


    The Bears enter Sunday's game against the Indianapolis Colts with a 4-4 record in season openers under Lovie Smith. Their fortunes have, for the most part, followed their performance in Game 1. Since Smith took over in 2004, the Bears have never had a losing record after winning their opener, going a combined 41-23 in the four seasons they began with a victory.

    Winning season follows when Bears open with a win

    The Bears enter Sunday's game against the Indianapolis Colts with a 4-4 record in season openers under Lovie Smith. Their fortunes have, for the most part, followed their performance in Game 1. Since Smith took over in 2004, the Bears have never had a losing record after winning their opener, going a combined 41-23 in the four seasons they began with a victory.


    Saturday’s girls volleyball scoreboard
    High school varsity results from Saturday's girls volleyball matches, as reported to the Daily Herald.


    Saturday’s girls tennis scoreboard
    High school varsity results from Saturday's girls tennis meets, as reported to the Daily Herald.


    Saturday’s girls swimming scoreboard
    High school varsity results from Saturday's girls swimming meets, as reported to the Daily Herald.


    Saturday’s girls cross country scoreboard
    High school varsity results from Saturday's girls cross country meets, as reported to the Daily Herald.


    Saturday’s boys soccer scoreboard
    High school varsity results of Saturday's boys soccer matches, as reported to the Daily Herald.


    Saturday’s boys golf scoreboard
    High school varsity results from Saturday's boys golf meets, as reported to the Daily Herald.


    Saturday’s boys cross country scoreboard
    High school varsity results from Saturday's boys cross country meets, as reported to the Daily Herald.

    Twins pitcher Cole DeVries throws against the Cleveland Indians in the second inning Saturday in Minneapolis.

    DeVries works 6 innings as Twins beat Indians 3-0

    Cole DeVries pitched six scoreless innings to win his third straight start and Minnesota beat the Cleveland Indians 3-0 on Saturday night.

    Arizona Diamondbacks Jason Kubel, right, is greeted third base coach Matt Williams after hitting a home run against the San Diego Padres during the third inning Saturday in San Diego.

    Diamondbacks hit 4 HRs in 8-5 win over Padres

    Jason Kubel hit two of Arizona's four home runs to help the Diamondbacks beat San Diego 8-5 Saturday night, snapping a seven-game losing streak against the Padres.


    Stevenson’s Miller medalist at Waukegan

    Ally Scaccia will be on the basketball floor for Prospect this winter.But for now, the junior is netting some solid shots on the golf course.Scaccia shot a team-low 81 on the par 72 layout at Bonnie Brook in Waukegan to help lift the Knights (338) to a second-place finish behind Hinsdale Central (315) in the Waukegan Invite on Saturday.

    Nebraska cornerback Braylon Heard, right, breaks up a pass intended for UCLA wide receiver Devin Lucien during the first half Saturday in Pasadena, Calif.

    UCLA knocks off No. 17 Nebraska 36-30

    Brett Hundley passed for 305 yards and four touchdowns in an outstanding Rose Bowl debut, Datone Jones sacked Taylor Martinez for a tiebreaking safety with 8:44 to play, and UCLA surprised No. 17 Nebraska 36-30 Saturday night.


    Schaumburg falls to Hinsdale Central

    Hinsdale Central ventured into Mid-Suburban League land on Saturday and the Red Devils not only left with a victory, but also a tournament championship following an impressive 2-0 win over host Schaumburg.First-half goals from Phillip Gutman and Christian Meyer were all the visitors would need to earn top honors at the Saxon Invite, which began on Friday in this annual four-team event, which also included Fremd as well as 2A power Peoria Notre Dame.


    Fremd showing some fire

    Some have predicted Fremd will struggle this season after losing nearly every key figure from its third-place state team a year ago. A quick glance at the Vikings' record thus far may prove, on the surface, to validate those who suggested a long season for the club.But Fremd head coach Steve Keller has been doing this to long, with a list of post-season honors in the trophy case to prove his point, and he isn't about to concede anything despite the Vikings 0-6-2 overall record. Saturday morning, after a dreadful 40 minutes of soccer against the high-profile 2A side Peoria Notre Dame, the Vikings gathered themselves up to turn in a marvelous 40 minutes themselves. They drew even near the hour mark and then went close with several chances before ending its match with the Irish in a 1-1 draw on the second day of tourney action at the Saxons Invite.

    Vanderbilt’s Jimmy Stewart tries to grab the ankles of Northwestern’s Kain Colter during the first half Saturday night in Evanston.

    Northwestern improves to 2-0 with win over with Vandy

    Venric Mark ran for 123 yards and a late touchdown, Tyler Scott forced a key fumble and Northwestern beat Vanderbilt 23-13 Saturday night. Northwestern (2-0) didn't score a touchdown in the first three quarters but managed 17 points in the fourth to come away with another dramatic win after beating Syracuse 42-41 in the opener.


    Belvidere North wins at Lake Park

    It’s a different year, and there are different challenges, but Belvidere North and senior Tyler Yunk are aiming for the same results.Belvidere North has won three consecutive Class 2A titles in boys cross country and Yunk has two consecutive second place finishes.The Blue Thunder displayed its power on Saturday at the 38th annual Harvey Braus Lancer Invitational rolling to the title with 61 points Lake Park East Campus.Senior Garrett Lee led the charge for Belvidere North taking first in 14:41, he was followed by Yunk (14:49) and senior Paxson Menard (14:59) who took second and third giving the Blue Thunder an impressive sweep of the top three spots.“It’s tough every year,” said Yunk of the Blue Thunder streak. “We still have a solid core and we know what to do.”Deerfield (74 points) nipped host Lake Park (76 points) for second place, Plainfield East (108 points) took fourth place, followed by Downers Grove North (113 points).Schaumburg senior Evan Prizy (15:01) took fourth place, followed by Plainfield East’s Joseph Suarez (15:07).Alex Gold (15:21) and Jordan Abosch (15:26) took 8th and 10th place to help pace Deerfield. Shai Farhi (15:34), Maor Kramer (15:55), and Charles Nashes (15:56) also gave the Warriors a lift by taking 15th, 20th, and 21st place.Deerfield moved down to Class 2A this season, and will definitely be in the state mix based on its early results.“We know we have a lot of work to do if we want to be up there with the best in 2A,” said Gold.Lake Park is another team that is clearly moving up. Last week the Lancers edged Oak Park-River Forest for the Benton Invitational title, they kept the pressure on this week.Junior Jeremy Lozano (15:17) and senior Dakota Morales (15:18) fueled the Lancers charge by finishing 6th and 7th. “We had a lot of young guys last year and now we’re year older,” said Lozano of the Lancers experience. “I think we’re making the transition.”The Lancers came through the first mile in a tight pack and that set the tone for the race.Junior Eric Dade (15:32) took 14th place, with senior Connor Peck (16:01) and junior Andy Tomaka (16:01) adding a 24th and 25th place finish for Lake Park.“We knew after the mile mark it was time to go,” said Morales of the Lancers charge. “Our pack is going to be dangerous, and we’re making a name for ourselves.”Jake Runnion (15:24) took 9th place combining with Suarez 5th place finish to help Plainfield East secure fourth place.Downers Grove North missed qualifying for state last season, but the Trojans may have something brewing this year.Senior Ben Eaton (15:30) and junior Jared Spilky (15:48) took 12th and 18th place for Downers North helping the Trojans secure a solid fifth place finish.Junior Jeremy Craven (15:57) and sophomore Ryan Clevenger (16:02) finished 22nd and 26th aiding a Trojan attack that was missing its No. 2 runner junior Zach Smith.“We’re really motivated this year,” said Spilky of an improved Trojan attack. “Key has been a close pack for us.”Bartlett is also inspired this season, the Hawks are transitioning from a strong track season and are building momentum.Senior Connor Rachford (15:43), junior Anthony Peters (15:49), and junior Dan Cotton 15:58 finished 16th, 19th, and 23rd spurring the Hawks to a 6th place finish.Bartlett finished 10th last week at the St. Charles East Invite, but the Hawks did a nice job of rebounding on Saturday.“We definitely came out different today, compared to the last couple of weeks,” said Rachford of the Hawks performance. “We’re starting to build and we’re becoming the team we expected to be.”Senior Juan Barajas (15:27) took 11th place for Schaumburg combining with Prizy’s fourth place finish to give the Saxons quite a lift up front.Prizy fast start may have caught up with him in the final two miles, but the senior grinded out an impressive fourth place finish for the Saxons.

    Milwaukee’s Jonathan Lucroy scores on a hit by Mike Fiers in the second inning Saturday at Busch Stadium in St. Louis.

    Brewers beat Cardinals again, 6-3

    ST. LOUIS (AP) — Aramis Ramirez had three hits, including his 22nd home run, to lead the Milwaukee Brewers to a 6-3 win over the St. Louis Cardinals on Saturday night.Ricky Weeks added a solo home run and Ryan Braun went 3 for 5 with a run scored for Milwaukee. Carlos Gomez went 2 for 4 and drove in two runs. Ramirez, who also walked twice, reached base all five times he batted and scored twice. After a slow start, he has raised his average over the past 89 games from .218 to an even .300.Mike Fiers (9-7) allowed one run and five hits in five innings and also got his first career RBI with a single in the second inning. He limited the Cardinals to five hits and three walks while striking out five. John Axford pitched a scoreless ninth for his 27th save.Adron Chambers had an RBI triple for St. Louis. Jake Westbrook (13-11) went five innings and allowed three runs and seven hits. Milwaukee improved to 15-4 in its last 19 games and pulled five games behind the Cardinals for the second wild card in the National League. St. Louis is one-half game up on the Dodgers for that spot with a four-game series against the Dodgers set for next weekend in Los Angeles.The Cardinals — at 74-65 — have the same record they had after 139 games last season. St. Louis went on from there to capture its 11th World Series title.The Brewers took a 2-0 lead in the second as Gomez’s sacrifice drove in Ramirez, who had walked, and Fiers had his RBI single two batters later.Daniel Descalso’s two-out RBI single pulled St. Louis within a run in the bottom half of the inning.However, Milwaukee regained its two-run lead in the third on a fielding error by Skip Shumaker on Corey Hart’s grounder that scored Braun. Weeks’ homer leading off the seventh off reliever Trevor Rosenthal made it 4-1.The Cardinals pulled to 4-3 on Skip Schumacher’s sacrifice fly in the eighth. Ramirez went deep with one out the ninth against Fernando Salas to make it 5-3, and Gomez’s RBI single closed the scoring.NOTES: Joe Kelly (5-6) will face the Brewers’ Shaun Marcum (5-4) in the series finale Sunday. ... The Cardinals’ Matt Carpenter left the game in the third inning after cutting both hands when his bat shattered. The wounds were superficial and he is expected to be available Sunday. ... Weeks’ home run gave Milwaukee an extra-base hit for the 78th straight game. ... Carlos Beltran, who was hitless in the first five games of the homestand (0 for 9) was out of the lineup for St. Louis.

    Arkansas defensive end Trey Flowers (86) pressures Louisiana Monroe quarterback Kolton Browning (15) during the first quarter Saturday in Little Rock, Ark.

    La.-Monroe upsets No. 8 Arkansas 34-31 in OT

    Kolton Browning's 16-yard touchdown run on fourth-and-one lifted Louisiana-Monroe to a 34-31 overtime win over the No. 8 Razorbacks on Saturday night.

    Waubonsie Valley’s Austin Guido races down the field to score a touchdown in the second quarter vs Streamwood on Saturday at Millennium Field.

    Waubonsie Valley 3-0 for 1st time since 1994

    Waubonsie Valley's unknowns in the trenches are no longer an unknown commodity. Just ask Warriors star running back Austin Guido and head coach Paul Murphy. They know how much seniors Joe Rodriguez and Jackson Hynes and juniors Jon Harris, Noah Szott and Anthony Napolitano have meant in achieving a piece of football program history on Saturday afternoon at Streamwood.The all-new starting offensive line crew helped drive Waubonsie to joining the 1994 team as the only ones to open a season 3-0 after a 56-0 Upstate Eight Conference crossover romp at Millennium Field.


    Neuqua Valley runs over South Elgin

    It took a quarter for the Neuqua Valley offense to get out of its own way. Then the Wildcats were off and running. And running, and running, and running. Neuqua Valley rushed for 350 yards on 59 attempts, while its defense limited South Elgin to 53 rushing yards and defended the pass well enough to notch a 42-20 road victory in the Upstate Eight Valley opener for both teams Saturday.

    Louisville tight end Nate Nord (85) breaks a tackle after a reception against Missouri State on Saturday in Louisville, Ky.

    No. 23 Lousville tops Missouri State 35-7

    After losing to No. 23 Louisville 35-7 on Saturday, FCS school Missouri State was just glad to be done with FBS schools from power conferences.


    Libertyville, Warren roll at Pepsi Showdown

    The field belonged to Lloyd Chatfield. His first career hat trick led defending Pepsi Showdown champion Libertyville to a 5-0 win over Lisle in an opening-round match at Lyons Township Soccer Complex in LaGrange Saturday. Warren's Aunor Solis earned a tip of the hat, too. Solis scored 4 goals, as the Blue Devils hammered Hubbard 8-1. Lake Zurich nudged past Oswego 2-1 in penalty kicks.


    Fire reserves fight their way to a tie in friendly match

    In the first half the Fire reserves played like reserves.In the second half of Saturday night's friendly against Mexican side Santos Laguna, the Fire reserves played like starters.

    TCU running back Aaron Green runs back a punt return for a touchdown during the first half Saturday against Grambling State in Fort Worth, Texas.

    No. 20 TCU opens Big 12 era 56-0 over Grambling

    TCU got off to a fast start in its first game as a Big 12 Conference member and debut of its $164 million completely redone stadium. The 20th-ranked Horned Frogs also made Gary Patterson the winningest coach in school history.

    Florida State’s Kevin Benjamin pulls in a touchdown pass past the defense of Savannah State’s Wayne Johnson in the third quarter Saturday in Tallahassee, Fla.

    No. 6 FSU rolls to 55-0 win over Savannah State

    EJ Manuel passed for three touchdowns in the opening seven minutes and sixth-ranked Florida State's defense held lower-division Savannah State to 28 yards Saturday on its way to a 55-0 victory in a game called in the third quarter because of lightning.

    Oregon tight end Colt Lyerla dives in for a touchdown against Fresno State defenders Phillip Thomas, left, and Tristan Okpalaugo during the first half Saturday in Eugene, Ore.

    No. 4 Oregon beats Fresno State 42-25

    Kenjon Barner ran for 201 yards and three touchdowns to lead No. 4 Oregon to a 42-25 victory over Fresno State on Saturday.

    Oklahoma quarterback Landry Jones passes under pressure from Florida A&M defensive tackle Padric Scott during the first quarter Saturday in Norman, Okla.

    No. 5 Sooners crush Florida A&M 69-13

    Damien Williams ran for 156 yards and four touchdowns in a record-setting Owen Field debut, Kenny Stills added 120 yards receiving and a score, and No. 5 Oklahoma beat Florida A&M 69-13 on Saturday night.


    Fremd, Prospect 2-3 at breezy Zee-Bee invite

    Nestled among a wide expanse of green space in far Northern Illinois, Shepherd's Crook Golf Course in Zion can be a difficult place to play on a breezy day. When the wind blows with the ferociousness that it did in the latter stages of Saturday's Zee-Bee Invitational, it can be downright intimidating. As a matter of fact, Prospect coach Tom Martindale said it would be quite an accomplishment' for any player to break 80 at the Zion-Benton hosted meet. That made the performance of the Knights, Mid-Suburban League rival Fremd and Saint Viator freshman Liam Warner all the more impressive.

    LSU running back Michael Ford tries to break a tackle by Washington defensive end Josh Shirley during the first half Saturday in Baton Rouge, La.

    No. 3 LSU spanks Washington, 41-3

    Alfred Blue rushed for 101 yards, including a 21-yard score, and No. 3 LSU racked up 242 yards on the ground in a 41-3 victory over Washington on Saturday night.

    Washington Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg sits in the dugout Saturday during the first inning of a baseball game against the Miami Marlins at Nationals Park. Strasburg’s season is over after the Washington Nationals decided to shut down the ace right-hander following a shaky start against the Miami Marlins. Manager Davey Johnson made the announcement Saturday morning.

    Strasburg decision shows how little we know

    Weekly baseball column by Matt Spiegel, who co-hosts "The McNeil & Spiegel Show" 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday-Friday on WSCR 670-AM, The Score, and "Hit and Run" at 9 a.m. Sundays with his Daily Herald colleague, Barry Rozner.


    Dundee-Crown takes 3rd at Bartlett

    The Dundee-Crown girls volleyball team went 3-2 Saturday and took third place at the Bartlett Invitational.The Chargers beat Bartlett and Fenton before losing to Kaneland and West Chicago, then came back to beat Rockford Lutheran to take third.Jillian Hostetler (23 kills, 4 aces) and Steph Magsamen (21 kills, 50 digs, 7 aces) led the Chargers. Lauren Lococo (15 kills, 38 digs), Cori Eischen (14 kills, 62 assists, 21 digs, 4 aces), Sam Pagano (10 kills, 7 aces, 6 blocks) and Franki Scarpelli (15 digs) also contributed.Larkin went 2-2 on the day and finished fifth. The Royals (7-7) beat Woodstock North and Bartlett but lost to West Chicago and Rockford Lutheran.Olivia Kofie (27 kills, 5 aces, 29 digs, 11 blocks), Brianna Stewart (28 kills, 8 blocks, 19 digs), Alyssa McGhee (45 assists, 12 digs), Diana Castillo (27 assists), Amelia Gill (40 digs), Paige Grantham (10 blocks), Alexis Price (13 kills, 9 digs) and Anna Gaston (11 kills, 13 digs) stood out for the Royals.Bartlett was 1-3 in the tournament, beating Fenton. Rachel Hartford (16 kills, 17 digs), Katie Hrbacek (14 kills), Elizabeth Arco (11 kills, Lexi Cazzato (14 digs) and Danielle Santucci (52 assists) led the Hawks (3-12).Jacobs 2nd at VH: Jacobs rolled into the championship match at the Vernon Hills Invite but lost to Glenbrook North. The Golden Eagles defeated Lake Park, St. Viator, Vernon Hills and Carmel prior to the title match. Alyssa Ehrhardt (53 kills, 32 digs, 26 aces), Kassie Kasper (26 digs), Rachel Arceneaux (14 kills), Mackie Traub (9 aces, 44 assists), Taylor Lauder (48 assists, 15 digs), Bridget Wellenberger (13 kills, 14 aces) and Rachel Weber (14 kills, 28 digs) led Jacobs (11-3).Harvest Christian d. Aurora Christian: Jordan Sollars (7 kills, 8 assists, 9 digs) and Sydney Doby (6 kills, 5 digs, 4 aces) led Harvest Christian to a 25-14, 25-20 nonconference win. Shayna Manusos (3 aces, 9 digs) and Sarah Kott (3 aces) also contributed for the Lions.


    NIU runs over Tenn.-Martin, 35-7

    Jordan Lynch ran for three touchdowns and threw for another score to lift Northern Illinois to a 35-7 win over Tennessee-Martin on Saturday night. It was the 16th consecutive home victory for the Huskies.

    White Sox starter Chris Sale improved to 16-6 with Saturday’s victory over the Royals at U.S. Cellular Field.

    White Sox hold on, finally stop Royals

    It wasn't pretty, but the White Sox weren't apologizing for their 5-4 win over the Royals Saturday. The Sox had to hang on after leading 5-1 heading into the eighth inning, but they managed to snap a six-game losing streak to Kansas City.


    Barrington soaks up victory over Evanston

    Kirsten Jacobsen and Mekenna Scheitlin each won two races and had legs on two winning relays as Barrington earned a 110-75 dual meet victory over Evanston on Saturday.

    Kaneland’s Victoria Clinton, who finished second, has a slight lead on Crystal Lake Central’s Sami Staples, who finished first, during the Wauconda cross country invitational at Lakewood Forest Preserve Saturday.

    Mundelein takes a positive step

    Things are looking up for the Mundelein girls cross country team as the Mustangs embark on what they expect to be a very successful season. Mundelein took another positive step in the right direction Saturday morning at the Wauconda Invitational, as it took third place with 126 points in the big 24-team field.

    And they’re off ... in the varsity girls race of the Wauconda Invitational at Lakewood Forest Preserve on Saturday.

    Warren’s Martinez finishes a strong runner-up

    It was a fight to the finish for the individual title of the Wauconda Invitational Saturday morning on the new 3-mile Lakewood Forest Preserve course.Warren senior Martin Martinez (15:39.12) led for a good part of the race, but he had to settle for second place behind individual champion Jesse Reiser (15:35.96) of McHenry.


    North Chicago enjoys a bit of ‘heaven’ on earth

    NewsAfter three straight 1-8 seasons, North Chicago's 3-0 start feels a little bit like "Heaven," North Chicago coach Glen Kozlowski said joyfully in the wake of his team's latest triumph Saturday. The Warhawks stayed unbeaten in convincing fashion with a 50-6 North Suburban Conference Prairie Division victory over visiting Round Lake.


    If healthy, Sox’ Floyd could face Tigers this week

    Gavin Floyd is scheduled to throw another bullpen session Sunday. If he is able to throw curveballs and his elbow feels good, Floyd could come off the disabled list and start against the Tigers Thursday, which would give Chris Sale an extra day of rest.

    Notre Dame quarterback Everett Golson, center, attempts to dive into the end zone between Purdue defensive end Robert Maci (58) and linebacker Joe Gilliam during the first half of an NCAA college football game in South Bend, Ind., Saturday.

    Boilermakers can’t finish off upset of Irish

    Tommy Rees came off the bench to lead Notre Dame on a last-minute, winning drive Saturday as the No. 22 Irish got a 27-yard field goal from Kyle Brindza with seven seconds to go and beat Purdue 20-17.

    Cubs starting pitcher Jeff Samardzija threw a complete-game victory Saturday against the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park.

    Samardzija goes the distance in Cubs win

    Jeff Samardzija pitched the Cubs' first complete game in his final start of the season and the North Siders beat the fading Pittsburgh Pirates 4-3 on Saturday night. David DeJesus singled in Welington Castillo with two outs in the eighth for the go-ahead run after Pittsburgh had tied the game at 3 in the bottom of the seventh.

    Oregon State’s Jordan Poyer (14) rushes against Wisconsin’s Montee Ball (28) during the first half of their NCAA college football game in Corvallis, Ore., Saturday.

    RB’s touchdown streak ends in Wisconsin loss

    Sean Mannion threw for 276 yards and a touchdown, Oregon State's defense smothered Wisconsin's Montee Ball and the Beavers upset the No. 13 Badgers 10-7 on Saturday.

    Streamwood’s Tyler Hendershot in the first quarter on Saturday, September 8.

    Images: Waubonsie Valley vs. Streamwood football
    Waubonsie Valley visits Streamwood in week three prep football action Saturday. Waubonsie Valley beat Streamwood 56-0.

    Former Bears quarterback Jim McMahon is suffering from early on-set dementia, and his struggles were the subject of a cover story in the current issue of Sports Illustrated.

    Why concussions won’t bring down the NFL

    While the topic of concussions and player safety are all the rage in the NFL, the dangers won't stop players from playing and fans from watching. Hockey and football, however, are taking seriously the problem and doing more to make the game safer while not removing the physical contact that makes their athletes rich, their sports entertaining and their networks anxious to pay billions.

    Anthony Castonzo

    Lake Zurich grad Castonzo psyched to play Bears

    Even if the Boy Wonder he's paid to protect turns out to be bad Luck this year, consider it good luck for Anthony Castonzo if he doesn't experience a repeat of last season. Never mind the Indianapolis Colts' NFL-worst-tying 2-14 record in the left offensive tackle's rookie season. During the Colts' fourth game, Castonzo, the pride of Hawthorn Woods and Lake Zurich High and the 22nd overall pick in the 2011 draft, suffered a left high ankle sprain. He missed the next four games, before playing the rest of the season on an ankle that pained every time he tried to start and stop his 6-foot-7, 315-pound frame.


    Hinsdale C. takes Batavia invite

    The golfing gods can be so cruel at times. The Batavia boys golf team has been virtually invincible at its home venue, Fox Valley Golf Club in North Aurora, in recent weeks. But the Bulldogs' seven consecutive dual-match wins to begin the season were meaningless to West Suburban Silver rivals Hinsdale Central and Lyons Township on Saturday.

    Grace Brinker of Neuqua swims the 200 IM during the Neuqua Valley girls swimming invitational Saturday.

    Neuqua Valley’s Dalesandro pitches in

    Saturday's Neuqua Valley swimming invitatiional proved once again that the Wildcats' Gia Dalesandro is eager to do anything she can to help the team.The senior, who finished third at state in the 100 butterfly and fourth in the 100 backstroke, arrived past the halfway point of Saturday's meet after taking the ACT, and she played a big part in the Wildcats' team title by winning two individual races and anchoring the victorious 400 freestyle relay team.

    Buffalo Grove High School twins Lauren Goggin, foreground, and Dana play doubles against Lake Zurich’s Melanie Spears and Sam Wilson at Buffalo Grove High School girls tennis invitational on Saturday, September 8.

    Goggin twins double their pleasure with repeat invite crowns

    Buffalo Grove seniors Dana and Lauren Goggin (7-1), who finished among the Top 24 doubles teams in the state last fall, entered the Bison Invite with a postseason mindset — and it paid huge dividends as the twins defended their invite crown.In their final match, the Goggins battled the York duo of Gabby Riek / Ellen Barry and fell behind 3-0 in the first set. But employing their lob game, the Goggins recovered to win three straight games to tie the set. In a match seesawed back and forth, the Goggins eventually captured the first set 7-5 and never looked back, blanking the York duo 6-0 to close out the match and claim the crown.


    New Trier tops St. Charles E. for Prairie Ridge title

    Over the last 3 years, losing hasn't been in the vocabulary of the Cary-Grove girls volleyball team. With two second place finishes in the state tournament along with a 2009 state championship, Cary-Grove has proved to one of the top programs in the state. At Saturday's Prairie Ridge Invitational, The Trojans had one of those days to forget.


    Larkin, Huntley win Pepsi Showdown games

    Erik Rodriguez scored twice and assisted on the game-winning goal as No. 3 seed Larkin held off Lake Forest Academy 3-2 Saturday in the opening round of the Pepsi Showdown boys soccer tournament at Lyons Twp. High School.The Royals will take on No. 14 seed Lake Zurich Tuesday. Larkin is to host the game but a time and exact place will be determined Monday. Elgin has a scheduled Upstate Eight Conference game with St. Charles East at Memorial Field Tuesday at 4:30 p.m. Lake Zurich got past Oswego 3-2 in Saturday’s opening round.Junior Escalante scored the game-winner for Larkin Saturday. The Royals were down 1-0 at halftime. Tony Hernandez also added an assist and Aldair Dominguez had 3 saves in goal for the Royals (6-1).Huntley 5, Fenwick 0: Unseeded Huntley notched its seventh shutout and eighth win of the season without a loss in beating No. 12 Fenwick this Pepsi Showdown game. Lucas Baker scored twice for the Red Raiders, while Jason Zobots, David Parda and Zach Stenger each had single goals. Eduardo Gonzalez had 2 assists, with Christian Ramos, Niko Mihalopoulos and Raul Sanchez adding one each. Auston Emery had 4 saves in goal for Huntley, which will play Chicago Lane in Tuesday’s second round at a site and time to be determined Monday. Unseeded Lane upset No. 6 Leyden 1-0 on Saturday.WW South 1, Streamwood 0: The Sabres lost 3-1 in PKs in this Pepsi Showdown game. Bryan Contreras had 6 saves in goal for Streamwood (5-4).Jacobs 6, Grant 1: Tim Hübner had a hat trick, while Anthony Moscatello, Kyle Heverdjs and Austin Ryan added one each to lead the Golden Eagles to a nonconference win. Svonko Kvalji had 6 saves in goal for Jacobs.Burlington Central 2, Genoa-Kingston 1: Christian Moring scored off an assist from Austin VanAcker with 4:19 left in the first overtime to lift the Rockets (7-1-2, 4-0-1) to a Big Northern East win. Ian Graffagna scored BC’s other goal off an assist from Matt O’Connor. Brett Rau had 7 saves in the net for the Rockets.CL South 1, Neuqua Valley 0: Gus Alvarez made 3 saves in goal for the Gators as they registered a nonconference shutout. Michael Conley scored a first-half goal off an assist from Sam Murdock for the game’s only goal. Crystal Lake South improved to 5-4 on the season with the win.Westminster Christian 2, IMSA 1: Noah Gannon and Nick Gnan scored goals and Robert Klecynszki had an assist for Westminster in this nonconference win. Sam Carani had 8 saves in goal for the Warriors (5-1-1).NSCD 9, St. Edward 1: Kevin Olenek scored the Green Wave’s only goal in this nonconference loss to North Shore Country Day. Matt Hesch (4 saves) and John Gotheridge (3 saves) were in goal for St. Edward (3-5).John Radtke contributed to this report

    Devin Hester, a three-time Pro Bowler, says it’s all about winning a ring in the NFL.

    For Hester, Pro Bowl no match for a ring

    Brian Urlacher has been voted to eight Pro Bowls, Lance Briggs and Julius Peppers to seven, and Devin Hester three. Matt Forte, Charles Tillman, Robbie Gould and Johnny Knox one each. But that's not the point. "You've just got to look at the big picture, plain and simple," Hester said. "The big picture is winning the Super Bowl, and everybody is buying into that.

    Burlington Central coach Marvin Leavitt talks with his team during a timeout in the 2008 Class 3A state championship match against Joliet Catholic Academy. Leavitt won his 600th career match on Saturday at the DeKalb tournament.

    Burlington Central’s Leavitt gets 600th win

    One could say it's been a good weekend for Burlington Central girls volleyball coach Marv Leavitt. On Friday night Leavitt's daughter, Haley, gave birth to son Hank, the first grandchild for Leavitt and his wife, Patty. Then on Saturday, Leavitt's BC volleyball team went out and won 4 of 5 matches at the DeKalb tournament, earning their eighth-year coach his 600th career win in the process. The Rockets lost to DeKalb in the championship match.

    Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson rushes for a 79-yard touchdown Saturday against Air Force in Ann Arbor, Mich.

    Robinson helps No. 19 Michigan top Air Force 31-25

    Denard Robinson ran for 218 yards, threw for 208 and scored four times to help No. 19 Michigan hold off Air Force for a 31-25 win Saturday. Robinson became the first player in major college football since at least 1996 to have at least 200 yards rushing and 200 passing in three games, according to STATS LLC.

    St. Charles East’s Sarah Church gets ready for a return during the Saints’ Invitational Saturday. The Saints led area teams taking third.

    Naperville C. wins St. Charles East invitational

    St. Charles East coach Sena Drawer had such a big smile after totaling up the results of the Saints' annual invitational Saturday afternoon she had her players double and triple check her math.


    St. Patrick stymies Benet

    Shining like a beacon for Benet's football team was a 3-0 start last achieved by the Redwings' 1986 squad.


    Glenbard West defense breaks down Lyons Twp.

    Glenbard West's football team put a twist on the bend-but-don't-break defense.The Hilltoppers bent and broke Lyons Twp.Taking advantage of five turnovers — including the recovery of two fumbles inside its 5-yard line — Glenbard West rolled to a 49-7 West Suburban Silver Conference victory over the Lions on a picture perfect Saturday afternoon at Glen Ellyn's Duchon Field.


    Glenbard South offense picks up the pace

    Glenbard South figured Saturday was a good day to break out the hurry-up offense.The Raiders scored at a pace to match the offense's tempo, taking a 38-14 nonconference football victory at Rich East in Park Forest.


    Lake Park’s Kaylee Flanagan speeds to title in course-record time

    Lake Park senior Kaylee Flanagan may not be faster than a speeding bullet, but the Lancers senior sure looked super at the 38th annual Harvey Braus Lancer Invitational on Saturday. As Flanagan flew across the 3.0-mile course on Lake Park's East campus — taking the title in a course-record 16:27 — the only thing missing was a cape.

    Iowa State running back James White out runs Iowa’s James Morris during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday.

    Iowa State holds off Iowa 9-6

    The Iowa Hawkeyes didn't let Steele Jantz beat them like he did a year ago. This time, it was the Cyclones' defense that took down the rival Hawkeyes. Steele Jantz threw for 241 yards and the game's only touchdown on Saturday and Iowa State beat Iowa 9-6 for its first win in Iowa City in 10 years.

    Sacramento State defensive lineman Jaycee Totty, left, pulls down Colorado quarterback Jordan Webb for a sack in the fourth quarter of their NCAA college football game in Boulder, Colo., Saturday. Sacramento State won 30-28.

    Sacramento State upsets Colorado 30-28 on late FG

    Walk-on Edgar Castaneda's 30-yard field goal as time expired gave Sacramento State a stunning 30-28 win over Colorado on Saturday — and earned him a scholarship in the process.

    Indiana quarterback Tre Roberson (5) has his helmet removed by a trainer as they wait for and ambulance to come onto the field after Roberson was hurt on a red zone run during their NCAA college football game against Massachusetts in Foxborough, Saturday.

    Indiana QB Roberson out for year with broken leg

    Indiana quarterback Tre Roberson will miss the rest of the season with a broken left leg suffered in a 45-6 win over Massachusetts on Saturday.

    Chicago’s Dayan Viciedo watches his solo home run in the first inning during Saturday’s game against the Kansas City Royals at U.S. Cellular Field.

    White Sox hit 3 homers in 5-4 win over Royals

    Dayan Viciedo, Tyler Flowers and Paul Konerko each homered to back Chris Sale's six solid innings and lead the Chicago White Sox to a 5-4 win over the Kansas City Royals on Saturday. Sale (16-6) scattered five hits and struck out six over six innings, winning his eighth straight decision at U.S. Cellular Field and helping Chicago end a six-game skid against Kansas City.

    Indiana running back D’Angelo Roberts (20) attempts to step over Massachusetts defensive back Darren Thellen (27) and remain inbounds during Saturday’s game in Foxborough, Mass.

    Indiana cruises past UMass, 45-6

    Tre Roberson scored on runs of 50 and 39 yards before leaving with an apparent left leg injury, and Indiana spoiled Massachusetts' first home game as a Football Bowl Subdivision member with a 45-6 win on Saturday.

    Michigan State’s Le’Veon Bell, center, celebrates his second-quarter touchdown with teammates Saturday on the road against Central Michigan.

    No. 11 Michigan St. overwhelms Central Michigan 41-7

    Andrew Maxwell threw for 275 yards and two touchdowns, and No. 11 Michigan State cruised to a 41-7 win over Central Michigan on Saturday.

    The Nationals’ batter Bryce Harper (34) is restrained by home plate umpire Jerry Lane, left, and Cubs catcher Steve Clevenger after an inside pitch during the sixth inning Thursday in Washington. The benches and bullpens emptied onto the field.

    Clevenger suspended one game, will sit out tonight

    Chicago Cubs catcher Steve Clevenger has been suspended for one game by Major League Baseball for his role in a benches-clearing incident against the Nationals. Clevenger, who also was fined, did not appeal the penalty and was set to sit out tonight at Pittsburgh.

    Washington Nationals starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg throws during the second inning Friday at home against the Miami Marlins.

    Strasburg officially done for season

    All-Star ace Stephen Strasburg is done for the year after the Washington Nationals decided to end his season following a shaky start, costing him a chance to possibly pitch in the playoffs. Manager Davey Johnson made the announcement Saturday morning.

    Britain’s Andy Murray returns a shot to Czech Republic’s Tomas Berdych during a semifinal match Saturday at the U.S. Open in New York.

    Murray will have to wait to learn foe in final

    With a potentially dangerous storm bearing down on the U.S. Open, play was suspended in the first set of defending champion Novak Djokovic's semifinal Saturday, making this the fifth consecutive year the tournament will fail to finish on time because of the weather.

    Tulane’s Devon Walker (18), right, and Julius Warmsley (92) tackle Tulsa’s Kenny Welcome, bottom left, during Saturday’s game in Tulsa, Okla. Walker was seriously hurt on this play.

    Tulane safety suffers spinal injury

    Tulane safety Devon Walker fractured his spine in a head-to-head collision with a teammate during a game in Tulsa, the team doctor said Saturday. Dr. Buddy Savoie said during a postgame news conference that Walker is in stable condition and will need spinal surgery in the "the next day or two."

    Minnesota quarterback MarQueis Gray, left, gives New Hampshire’s Matt Evans a stiff-arm on a touchdown run during the second quarter Saturday in Minneapolis.

    Gray’s 4 TDs lead Gophers past New Hampshire 44-7

    MarQueis Gray threw for two touchdowns and ran for two more by halftime, and the Gophers scored their most points in a game in five years by beating New Hampshire 44-7 on Saturday.

    Virginia Tech’s Marcus Davis rushes against Austin Peay during Saturday’s game in Blacksburg, Va.

    No. 15 Virginia Tech rolls over Austin Peay

    With the offense struggling, Virginia Tech turned to its old friend — special teams — for a pair of big plays to spark a 42-7 victory over Austin Peay on Saturday.

    Ohio State’s Braxton Miller (5) breaks away from Central Florida players on his way to a touchdown during the first quarter Saturday in Columbus, Ohio.

    Miller too much for UCF as Ohio State wins 31-16

    Central Florida coach George O'Leary certainly doesn't believe in moral victories.After Braxton Miller rushed for three touchdowns and threw for another to lead No. 14 Ohio State to a 31-16 win over the Knights on Saturday, it was suggested to O'Leary that his team did well to throw a scare into the Buckeyes. "You either win or lose. We lost," he said.

    Palatine's Dan Riddle runs back an interception.

    Images: Palatine vs. Elk Grove Village

    The Palatine High School Pirates improved to 2-1 with a 42-21 win over the Elk Grove High School Grenadiers Friday, September 7th in Palatine. Elk Grove dropped to 2-1.

    Oakland Athletics pitcher Brandon McCarthy leaves the game after being struck in the head on Wednesday.

    A’s pitcher Brandon McCarthy jokes on Twitter

    Brandon McCarthy is back to his Twitter-happy self, a positive sign for the Oakland Athletics' pitcher struck in the head by a line drive this week. The 29-year-old McCarthy underwent two hours of surgery late Wednesday to relieve pressure on the brain.

    Clemson wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins pulls in a reception for a touchdown while being covered by Ball State’s Jason Pinkston in the first half Saturday in Clemson, S.C.

    No. 12 Clemson powers past Ball State 52-27

    DeAndre Hopkins caught three touchdown passes, Andre Ellington rushed for two scores and Spencer Benton kicked a 61-yard field goal to set an Atlantic Coast Conference record in No. 12 Clemson's 52-27 victory over Ball State on Saturday.

    South Carolina wide receiver Nick Jones, left, and East Carolina defensive back Leonard Paulk dive for a pass from South Carolina quarterback Dylan Thompson during first half Saturday in Columbia, S.C.

    No. 9 S. Carolina drubs E. Carolina 48-10

    COLUMBIA, S.C. — Dylan Thompson completed 21 of 37 passes for 330 yards and three touchdowns to help No. 9 South Carolina (2-0) beat East Carolina 48-10 Saturday.Thompson started the game in place of the injured Connor Shaw, and left little doubt coach Steve Spurrier made the right choice to let Shaw rest.Thompson’s first completion was a 53-yard pass to Damiere Byrd. He finished the game averaging almost 16 yards a completion and did not throw an interception.The rejuvenated passing game allowed Spurrier to use star running back Marcus Lattimore sparingly. He gained 40 yards on 13 carries.East Carolina (1-1) gained 403 yards. But the Pirates turned the ball over five times, including four interceptions and a fumble in just 16 plays.Spurrier said this week that Shaw could play if he was needed after bruising his right shoulder in last week’s win over Vanderbilt. But Thompson made his first start count. The sophomore threw two incompletions to start the game, but completed his next five passes as the Gamecocks jumped to a 14-0 lead midway through the first quarter.Thompson’s passes looked sharp, in contrast to the way the Gamecocks threw the ball last week against the Commodores, when they completed seven throws for 67 yards. With UAB coming up next week, Spurrier might be tempted to keep Thompson behind center. His 330 yards passing beat Shaw’s career best of 311 against Kentucky in 2011.In fact, Thompson’s only bad decision came late in the fourth quarter when he took on a defender as he tried to run the ball in for a touchdown on a third-and-19 with the Gamecocks up 31 points. Their helmets collided, and Thompson fumbled it away. Spurrier shook his head, smiled and patted his QB on the back when he got back to the sideline. Senior backup Seth Strickland came in to finish the game.Spurrier kept passing the ball well into the fourth quarter. Wide receiver Ace Sanders took a lateral and threw a 16-yard touchdown to D.L. Moore to give the Gamecocks a 41-3 lead early in the 4th quarter as Spurrier won his 199th career game. Strickland threw a 51-yard touchdown pass to tight end Rory Anderson with 44 seconds left.Anderson caught four passes for 90 yards, and Bruce Ellington had four receptions for 63 yards. South Carolina quarterbacks completed passes to 11 different receivers and threw for 397 yards. The Gamecocks gained 528 yards total.The Pirates were killed by turnovers. Rio Johnson got the start again at quarterback, but coach Ruffin McNeill turned the game over to Shane Carden at the start of the second half. Carden threw an interception on his first pass. Johnson came back, and threw another pick four plays later that South Carolina’s Jimmy Legree returned for a touchdown to put the Gamecocks ahead 35-0.Carden returned to the game and led the Pirates on their only two scoring drives, including waiting out the rush to throw a 34-yard touchdown pass to Justin Hardy that cut South Carolina’s lead to 41-10 with nine minutes left in the game.Carden was 12-of-18 for 140 yards and an interception, while Johnson completed 18 of 29 passes for 193 yards and three interceptions.Hardy caught eight passes for 111 yards for East Carolina.It was a good day all the way around for Gamecocks fans. The school opened its new $30 million tailgating area across from the stadium and started a tradition that has the players walk through the crowd to the stadium. The area included trees whose leaves will change color to South Carolina garnet instead of Clemson orange in the fall. The school also turned on its new 36-foot tall, 124-foot wide video board that cost $6.5 million.

    Sam Miller, left, the executive assistant to former Baltimore Ravens owner Art Modell, shakes hands with Matthew Twillman, 14, of Olney, Md., on Saturday during a public viewing at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore.

    Modell family asks Browns to cancel tribute

    The Browns had planned an "appropriate recognition" for Art Modell, who died on Thursday at the age of 87. But Modell's son, David, spoke to Browns president Mike Holmgren and requested the team not do anything to recognize the late owner who remains vilified by many Cleveland fans for moving his team to Baltimore after the 1995 season.

    Kansas State quarterback Collin Klein looks for an official’s call after crossing the goal line past Miami defensive back Vaughn Telemaque during the second half Saturday in Manhattan, Kan.

    No. 21 K-State routs Miami 52-13

    Turns out Collin Klein can throw the ball a bit, too. The gritty run-first quarterback of No. 21 Kansas State was nearly perfect through the air on Saturday, throwing for 210 yards and a touchdown — and of course, adding 71 yards and three more scores on the ground — as the Wildcats pounded Miami 52-13.

    Virginia tight end Jake McGee makes a reception in front of Penn State linebacker T.J. Rhattigan (22) and safety Stephen Obeng-Agyapong (7) during the second half Saturday in Charlottesville, Va.

    Penn State loses heartbreaker, 17-16 at Virginia

    Penn State is still looking for its first win under coach Bill O'Brien. The Nittany Lions may not get more chances than they had against Virginia. Cavaliers quarterback Michael Rocco hit Jake McGee on a 6-yard touchdown pass with 1:28 to play Saturday, and Penn State kicker Sam Ficken's fourth missed field goal of the game — from 42 yards at the gun — preserved Virginia's 17-16 victory.


    Miami (Ohio) downs SIU 30-14

    Zac Dysert passed for 226 yards and a touchdown and two Pat Hinkel interceptions led to Miami (Ohio) scores as the RedHawks defeated Southern Illinois 30-14 Saturday


    Dunn leads ISU past E. Michigan 31-14

    Darrelynn Dunn continued a hot start to the season with 129 yards rushing and two touchdowns, and Illinois State dominated the second half Saturday en route to a 31-14 victory over Eastern Michigan.

    Serena Williams will meet Victoria Azarenka in the women’s final at the U.S. Open. The match has been postponed until Sunday.

    U.S. Open women’s final delayed until Sunday

    The women's final between Serena Williams and Victoria Azarenka was pushed back a day because of a strong storm bearing down on New York. It marks the fourth time in the last five years the women's final, normally scheduled for Saturday, will be played on Sunday instead.

    Kealia Ohai of United States,center, celebrates with Vanessa Di Bernardo (10) of Naperville after Ohai scored a goal during final match of the U20 Women’s World Cup against Germany in Tokyo on Saturday.

    Naperville’s DiBernardo helps U.S. win World Cup

    The U.S. U-20 Women's National Team, along with Illini junior standout Vanessa DiBernardo of Naperville and head coach Janet Rayfield, defeated Germany 1-0 Saturday to claim the U-20 World Cup Championship in Tokyo, Japan.

    With plenty of help around him, New York Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul could win the NFL’s Defensive Player of the Year award, according to Bob LeGere.

    Some early frontrunners for key NFL awards

    Our NFL expert, Bob LeGere, offers some fearless early predictions on who might be the big individual award winners in the 2012 season.

    Colts quarterback Andrew Luck may have the toughest job in football this year, coming in as the No. 1 draft pick to replace Indy icon Peyton Manning.

    Tough Luck assignment: replacing Manning in Indy

    Steve Young understands Andrew Luck’s challenge in Indianapolis.The rookie quarterback will get peppered with comparisons to Peyton Manning, contend with supportive and critical fans who seek him out around town and will have every part of his professional life scrutinized over the season.Yes, Luck has the toughest job in pro football — trying to replace a popular Super Bowl-winning quarterback who has relocated.And it starts with reporting to work at noon Sunday against the Bears in Soldier Field.“If you’re always trying to live through the comparison, it will wear you out,” said Young, one of the few athletes who has successfully navigated these treacherous waters. “But you can turn it around. It’s not easy, but if you say to yourself that `all that’s been put in front of me is a tremendous opportunity,’ then you can deal with it.”Young was the first of three NFL quarterbacks to face such a grueling transition. He took over for the injured Joe Montana in 1991, a starting job that wasn’t firmly his until San Francisco traded Montana to Kansas City in 1993.More than a decade later, Aaron Rodgers joined the list when he replaced three-time MVP Brett Favre, who retired following the 2007 season. Then Rodgers had to contend with the distracting ordeal of Favre changing his mind and wanting to return. Eventually, the Packers took the same path as San Francisco, trading Favre to the New York Jets and keeping the younger guy.Now it’s Luck’s turn. And in some ways, his task may be more challenging. First, he’s replacing a four-time MVP and the only quarterback to win a Super Bowl in Indy. He’s also dealing with the pressure of being a No. 1 overall draft pick and stepping in for a player that was such a big figure in the community that he has a children’s hospital named for him.Luck has promised he won’t get bogged down with comparisons.“Whether it’s on or off the field, I’m not measuring myself against Peyton,” he said. “If I did, I’d probably go crazy trying to measure up to him.”But as Young and Rodgers know, it won’t be easy.They say the key to succeeding in such a fishbowl is staying grounded, being yourself, living up to your standards and not worrying about the sideshows outside the locker room.“I think it’s important to not only take stuff from the guys you play with, but be humble enough to realize that you can learn from guys who have been there and done it before,” Rodgers said.Young didn’t have that option in the early 1990s.When he started out, people were telling him stories about baseball or basketball players who had replaced other big names. None of them applied to football, though the closest may have been when the Baltimore Colts traded John Unitas to San Diego in 1973 and took Bert Jones with their first-round pick in the draft.Unitas played one more season in the league, but it wasn’t Jones who came under the most scrutiny. It was Baltimore’s front office.“John was always revered in the community of Baltimore,” Jones said, explaining the decision did not come from then team owner Robert Irsay. “He had a GM that had good ideas but didn’t have good PR tact, I would say, instead of allowing these folks to fade into the sunset in a graceful way and in a way that was suitable for their talent.”Two decades later, Young found himself thrust into the spotlight in a different football world.After Young endured a challenging 1991 season and won the MVP Award in 1992, Montana wanted to return from an elbow injury that kept him out nearly two full seasons. Some San Francisco fans clamored for Montana’s return, but the 49ers front office thought trading Montana would be a better move. Montana played two seasons in Kansas City, but the comparisons between the two didn’t end until Young won his second MVP and his only Super Bowl as a starting quarterback in 1994.

    The Dallas Cowboys boast a high-tech stadium and video display, but there are more advances to come in the NFL. The first-down line that has become a staple of all NFL broadcasts could become a fixture for fans at the stadium, and chain crews might disappear if measurements can accurately be determined through high-tech gadgets.

    Game of the Future: NFL 2017

    NEW YORK — Laser technology to help officials. Computer chips in the football.Devices that measure the impact of a hit or the speed of a ball carrier heading to the end zone. Streamlined, yet safer equipment. A 400-pound player.More teams in the playoffs. More international matchups. More prime-time games.NFL 2017? Quite possibly.America’s most popular and profitable sport, a $9 billion industry that figures to be worth more than $14 billion in five years, still will feature 100-yard fields, 11 players on each side of the ball, and Green Bay cheeseheads by then. Otherwise, experiencing the NFL season and off-season could change drastically, whether you’re on your couch, at the local tavern or in the stands.So look for a longer draft, possibly rotating to league stadiums. Expect huge video boards in those stadiums capable of providing instantaneous information for the fan and the fantasy player — along with highlights from every game, peeks at what the referee sees when reviewing challenged plays, even views of the locker room.Dynamic ticket pricing. Another outdoor Super Bowl in a cold weather city. A franchise in Los Angeles, perhaps even two.All of that possibly, perhaps probably, is ahead for the NFL.“Our philosophy is to always look for ways to improve,” said Commissioner Roger Goodell. “Our goals are to continually evolve the game to make it better and safer, serve our fans in new ways, and represent the NFL with integrity. We do that by emphasizing quality and innovation, including the latest technology as it applies to everything from equipment to medical care to the stadium experience.”And it all could come crashing down if the thousands of people involved in concussion lawsuits against the league win their cases.“You never want to understate the potential impact of class-action lawsuits,” said Marc Ganis, president of Chicago-based sports business consulting firm Sportscorp Ltd., and a keen observer of the league’s business side. “Having said that, we must keep in mind that if the concussion lawsuits are found for the plaintiffs, we are talking about effectively eliminating football in the U.S. They will have to say football inherently is too dangerous a game to play because it inherently causes concussions. That could be the impact of these lawsuits.”That’s a doomsday scenario. More likely, the NFL will be around and will remain this nation’s No. 1 sport. With labor peace assured for another nine years, pro football is positioned to continue its prosperity. One of the biggest challenges to remaining No. 1 in 2017 will be making every game for 17 weeks an event, no matter where it is being viewed.Making the stadium experience as enriching as what fans get at home is a challenge now, and will be even more so in five years. Consider how the fans in their decked-out living rooms, watching on high-definition TVs, have access to every game through DirecTV’s Sunday Ticket and the Red Zone channel. They have all kinds of statistical info at fingertips, particularly for their fantasy teams. And they can get everything on a smartphone or tablet. By 2017, maybe even sooner, they will enjoy all of that — and more — at the ballpark.The Tampa Bay Buccaneers announced this week they hired an outside company to enhance the in-stadium experience through “free Wi-Fi, a new replay system, and bolstered customer service.” Fans can take advantage of wireless access to use the team’s official mobile app, as well as the Bucs’ tablet and smartphone application that will give them special features when used at Raymond James Stadium on game day.Fully powered Wi-Fi will be available at all stadiums “much sooner than in five years,” said Redskins general manager Bruce Allen. Stats and highlights from NFL Films, too.

    Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson is coming off one of the best seasons in league history, and he expects to add to that legacy this season.

    Will the Detroit Lions finally roar?

    DETROIT — Even before Jim Schwartz was hired by the Detroit Lions in 2009, he joked it was time for the franchise to replace Bobby Layne.The Lions were the butt of jokes, coming off the first 0-16 season in league history, and were widely expected to take Matthew Stafford with the No. 1 overall pick back then. Detroit has regularly been a league laughingstock in large part because of a futile, decades-long search for a star quarterback since winning the 1957 NFL title and trading Layne the next year.But no one is chuckling about the proud-again Lions anymore.Martin Mayhew has mostly made all the right moves in his three-plus years in charge as the general manager who replaced Matt Millen. Schwartz has proved he can lead a turnaround, from the meeting room to the field. And, Stafford has shown he has the talent, moxie and leadership it takes to play his pivotal position.Stafford led the Lions to 10 wins last season, their most since 1995, and helped them end an 11-year playoff drought.Instead of looking back at the feat, Stafford is focus on what’s ahead, starting with Sunday’s opener at home against the St. Louis Rams, and toward helping the Lions make consecutive postseason appearances for the first time since the mid-1990s. “It’s been a while since we’ve been good on a consistent basis, back when Herman (Moore) and (Robert) Porcher and all those guys were playing,” Stafford said. “We’re trying to get back there.“You want to win and give the city something to cheer about.”Rams QB Sam Bradford, coach Jeff Fisher and GM Les Snead do, too.Bradford, selected by St. Louis No. 1 overall a year after Stafford was picked, is hoping to return to his form when he was the NFL’s Offensive Rookie of the Year in 2010. The Rams won seven games that season, then endured an injury-stunted 2-win season.That setback after seeming to step toward success sank St. Louis to the dubious distinction of having the worst winning percentage over a five-season span since the 1970 NFL-AFL merger, according to STATS LLC, and the fourth lowest in league history. The Rams went 15-65 over the last five years, giving them a .118 winning percentage that was lower than Tampa Bay’s .203 clip from 1983-87, Houston’s struggles just before that, along with a pair of recent skids in Detroit.James Hall almost saw it all.Hall played for St. Louis the last five years after losing a lot of games during the first seven years of his career with the Lions. That gives the unsigned free agent defensive end a unique perspective on what has gone wrong for both franchises.“The similarities would have to be draft classes that had a lot of guys that didn’t pan out,” Hall said. “It’s huge for any organization to find what they need in the draft, especially with first-round picks.”Hall likes the chances both teams have of winning in the future because of Stafford and Bradford.“Quarterback has always been the most important position, but that’s become even more true because it has become such a pass-oriented game,” he said. “If you have a franchise quarterback, you have a better chance to win.”Good GMs and coaches help, as well, and the Rams have two new men in those positions.St. Louis beat out the Miami Dolphins for Fisher, who took a one-year hiatus after a 16-plus season run with the Tennessee Titans franchise in which he went to a Super Bowl and won 142 games to trail just Bill Belichick and Mike Shanahan among active coaches.Fisher and Snead have drastically reshaped their roster, hoping an influx of veterans such as standout cornerback Cortland Finnegan and Pro Bowl center Scott Wells — along with drafting Michael Brockers at defensive tackle and Janoris Jenkins at cornerback — can lead a turnaround.

    He still has a high-powered passing game, but Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers can now hand the ball off to Cedric Benson.

    Packers vs. 49ers a clash in styles

    GREEN BAY, Wis. — Green Bay is Exhibit A in an NFL trend that emphasizes mesmerizing passing games above all else, and Aaron Rodgers nearly passed the Packers to an undefeated season in 2011.The San Francisco 49ers bucked that trend last year, winning primarily with defense and running back Frank Gore — and they made it farther than the Packers in the playoffs.And while both teams spent the off-season trying to become more well-rounded, neither is expected to stray too far from their identity in Sunday’s season opener at Lambeau Field (3:25 p.m., FOX).“Obviously, what they like to do is grind the ball out, grind away in the trenches, and they’re really good at that,” Packers wide receiver Greg Jennings said. “And they try to eliminate that on the opposing side. What we do is we spread ’em out and we throw the ball around — and we have fun doing it.”All that fun didn’t get the Packers back to the Super Bowl, so they tried to fix their porous defense with draft picks and beef up their running game with the addition of former Bear Cedric Benson. The 49ers added a few new pieces to their passing game — including old Packers nemesis Randy Moss.Those tweaks add intrigue to a pair of potential Super Bowl contenders, but aren’t likely to change either team’s basic approach.“Everybody has a formula or team identity they try to play to,” Packers coach Mike McCarthy said. “I thought the 49ers did a very good job playing to their identity. Obviously, their success reflected that and I think they continued that through the preseason. Their preseason tape has been very good. We’re preparing for their style of play.”Still, the addition of veteran wideouts Moss and Mario Manningham, along with the selection of Illinois wide receiver A.J. Jenkins in the first round of the draft, at least opens up the possibility that the 49ers will make more big plays.Moss is 35 and was out of football last season, but 49ers quarterback Alex Smith says there’s no doubt in his mind that Moss remains a dangerous player.“A guy like Randy and the unique toolset that he has creates a lot of problems,” Smith said. “I think it gives them a lot to think about.”And while Packers fans surely haven’t forgotten Moss’ heyday with the Minnesota Vikings — including his notorious fake-mooning episode at Lambeau Field — McCarthy is more concerned about what Moss can do now.“I really haven’t seen him this preseason so I don’t have a strong opinion on where he is today,” McCarthy said. “He’s a unique talent and you definitely have to be aware when he’s on the field.”While Smith was best known for avoiding mistakes last season — he threw only 5 interceptions in 445 attempts — he’s talking about the possibility that the offense could take a step forward this season.“We just have so many weapons,” Smith said. “So much of this game comes down to matchups sometimes. We have a lot of guys that can do a lot of unique things. I think that’s a good problem to have. The more matchup problems you can create the better.”Smith and Rodgers are forever linked by the 2005 NFL draft; the 49ers took Smith with the first overall pick, while Rodgers fell to the Packers at No. 24. That hasn’t stopped the two from becoming friends off the field. And Rodgers said it would be dangerous to discount Smith’s potential to make big plays.“He’s a great guy, and a guy who’s playing at a high level,” Rodgers said. “To have that many pass attempts like he did last year, and then to take care of the football the way he did, didn’t get enough credit for the job that he did. That’s very difficult to do. And they gave him some weapons this year, and he’s going to be a big-time quarterback.”But despite their high-profile additions, Packers defensive lineman Ryan Pickett expects the 49ers to remain a run-first offense.

    With the same offensive coordinator in place, Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder says he feels much more comfortable heading into this season.

    Time for QB Ponder to show Vikings he’s ready to run things

    EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. — Christian Ponder was watching during draft time in April, when the Minnesota Vikings passed on a chance to bring in another quarterback in favor of a left tackle to keep Ponder off his back. He also noticed last week when general manager Rick Spielman and coach Leslie Frazier decided to cut veteran backup Sage Rosenfels and keep a stable of young quarterbacks with Ponder at the top of the depth chart. Heading into his first full season as the starter, and after an unconvincing preseason, Ponder knows it’s time to reward that faith. The Vikings open the regular season at home against Jacksonville on Sunday. With Adrian Peterson likely to carry a light load if he plays at all, the offense will run through Ponder’s right arm. Even though his exhibition performances weren’t exactly emphatic, Ponder enters the season brimming with confidence.“It helps me to see Rick Spielman adding pieces around me. It shows that he has confidence in me to build around me,” Ponder said on Wednesday. “When others show confidence in (you), that just keeps building it. I think this year is going to be a lot better than last year, especially for me.”It’s going to have to be. The Vikings went 3-13, with Ponder starting 10 games after the failed Donovan McNabb experiment. Without an offseason to prepare because of the lockout, Ponder was ragged. He had his moments — 381 yards against Denver and performing admirably against Aaron Rodgers and the Packers at the Metrodome — but also struggled with accuracy and inconsistency. He threw 13 touchdowns and 13 interceptions and sustained several injuries with his scrambling style. The Vikings lost seven of the last eight games and finished in last place for the second straight season.“I take a lot of the blame of what happened last year on myself,” Ponder said. “It really didn’t have a lot to do with what other players were doing. I was making bad mistakes and dumb decisions.”With the same offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach in place, Ponder says he feels much more comfortable this season. “It creates just a whole different atmosphere and confidence between myself and the coaching staff,” he said. “I’m glad I went through what happened last year and I think that being in the same offense is only going to help myself and the rest of the guys that are a part of it.”

    The New Orleans Saints will be without head coach Sean Payton this season, who was suspended by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell.

    Saints not only NFL team hurt by suspensions

    NEW YORK — Unquestionably, the New Orleans Saints have been damaged more than any NFL team by suspensions heading into the season, even with Friday’s appeals rulings that temporarily made Jonathan Vilma and Will Smith eligible to play.They are not the only short-handed team, though, and the impact could be powerful in several other cities.One of those is Cleveland, which has been a victim of the Saints’ bounty program punishments handed down by Commissioner Roger Goodell — penalties that now are in limbo. Browns linebacker and defensive leader Scott Fujita eventually might have to sit out three games for his role in the bounties when he was with New Orleans. Top cornerback Joe Haden this week was appealing his four-game ban for failing a drug test.Fujita has insisted he is innocent, just as the other Saints who are barred — linebacker Vilma for the entire season, defensive end Smith for four games — have done. And their battles against the suspensions in court were fruitful for the time being, with Fujita and Smith expected to play Sunday. Vilma, recovering from knee woes, is in no shape to take the field.Kansas City’s defense also will be without a key performer. Tamba Hali sidelined for the opener against Atlanta. A pass rush to make Matt Ryan uncomfortable and neutralize deep threats Julio Jones and Roddy White is essential for beating the Falcons. Hali also would be a key to stopping Michael Turner and Atlanta’s run game.“We’re disappointed. We’re disappointed for him, for the team, for the organization and the fans, but it is what it is,” Chiefs coach Romeo Crennel said. “He’s a guy who is very prideful, he’s been a very good team member for this team, and I think the team will rally around him.”The Chiefs really need to rally without him.Denver also will not have an important defender, D.J. Williams, and that’s a long-term deal. Williams lost his court battle to overturn his six-game ban for violating the league’s drug policy. The case has featured some wild twists, including the league saying urine samples Williams provided did not come from a human.Also, the specimen collector said he had watched Williams provide the samples, though at times he watched from the side rather than with a full frontal view, according to court documents. The collector was later fired.Williams argued to no avail that the NFL violated its own protocol leading up to his suspension.Williams has been the team’s leading tackler in four of the last five seasons. His absence could be felt well beyond the opener with Pittsburgh.Tennessee will be without top receiver Kenny Britt for the first week. The problem is, the Patriots are in town for that first week. But Britt also is coming off knee issues that border on chronic and might not have been a factor Sunday.One receiver who has stood out in the preseason, Minnesota’s Jerome Simpson, is gone for three games after having violated the league’s drug policy. Hardly a game-breaker thus far in his four-year career, Simpson has shown signs of maturing as a pass catcher. With star running back Adrian Peterson returning from major knee surgery and the Vikings using a second-year quarterback, Christian Ponder, not having Simpson could create a huge void.Fortunately for Minnesota, it opens with weak Jacksonville and Indianapolis.Detroit has all kinds of issues at running back, with its incumbent Jahvid Best sidelined by concussion symptoms, something that also plagued him in college. The Lions hoped Mikel Leshoure, their 2011 second-round pick, would be a factor in the backfield, but he missed his entire rookie year after tearing his left Achilles tendon during training camp.Now, he has to sit for two games as punishment for two offseason arrests.Detroit will wing the ball around regardless of who is available to run it. Still, any team needs some balance, even one with Matthew Stafford flinging to Calvin Johnson.


    Associated Press/Aug. 2, 2011 Satellite dishes dot the campus of ESPN in Bristol, Conn.

    Incentives bring sports media companies to Connecticut

    Sports and satellite dishes may be doing for Connecticut what the computer chip did for Silicon Valley.

    CEO of Las Vegas Sands Corp. Sheldon Adelson, centre with sunglasses, waves while visiting Alcorcon, which was one of the possible sites for the EuroVegas project on the outskirts of Madrid, with others unidentified.

    Madrid chosen for EuroVegas gambling resort

    The decision by Las Vegas Sands to choose Madrid for a big "EuroVegas" casino project was welcomed by city officials Saturday, but potential obstacles include the company's decision to fund only 35 percent of the resort and to demand changes in local laws.

    Protesters gather Saturday outside the International Exhibition Center in the northern port city of Thessaloniki, Greece.

    Greek PM: Painful cuts will restore credibility

    A variety of groups staged protest marches against Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras on Saturday. Farmers smashed watermelons outside the Trade Fair's premises, and anarchists briefly fought with riot police in the evening.

    Apple Inc. engineers have been working since 2005 to reinvent TV viewing. Designing the gadget may prove easy compared with convincing media and cable companies to loosen their grip on the television industry.

    Apple finds tougher road with TV

    Apple Inc. engineers have been working since 2005 to reinvent TV viewing. Designing the gadget may prove easy compared with convincing media and cable companies to loosen their grip on the television industry. This battle is nothing like Apple's previous forays into the music and mobile phone spheres, when the maker of iPods and iPhones negotiated with weakened record labels and a fractured wireless industry. Now the stakes are even higher and the competition tougher.


    Starbucks, Rookies, Jimmy John’s coming to Route 47

    Starbucks is coming to Huntley, a move village leaders say means Huntley has officially arrived. It would mark Starbucks' first foray into Huntley and leaders hail its arrival as a symbolic hurdle the village has cleared.

    You probably know the deal by now. Facebook and Twitter spent years making themselves valuable to their users by offering a great free service with few strings attached. Now that they’re hooked, both are working overtime to make themselves valuable to their real customers — advertisers.

    Twitter jumps on targeted-ads bandwagon

    You probably know the deal by now. Facebook and Twitter spent years making themselves valuable to their users by offering a great free service with few strings attached. Now that they're hooked, both are working overtime to make themselves valuable to their real customers — advertisers.

    This undated image provided by Zynga shows a screenshot of Farmville 2, announced on Wednesday, Sept. 5, 2012. Not Long ago, online games company Zynga looked on pace to unseat much bigger, well-established rivals as it rode the popularity of “FarmVille,” the clicking game of virtual cows and real money. But the iPad came along, and more people bought smartphones. People weren’t playing Zynga’s games on Facebook and computers as much as they used to.

    Can ‘FarmVille 2’ save struggling Zynga?

    Not long ago, online games company Zynga looked on pace to unseat much bigger, well-established rivals as it rode the popularity of "FarmVille," the clicking game of virtual cows and real money. But the iPad came along, and more people bought smartphones. People weren't playing Zynga's games on Facebook and computers as much as they used to. Zynga's revenue growth slowed down, and its stock price fell sharply, even as it released dozens of new games.

    The “pre-bionic eye” is a retinal implant with 24 electrodes. A small lead wire extends from the back of the eye to a connector behind the ear. Using an external system in the lab, the researchers can stimulate the implant in order to study the flashes of light.

    Universities in race to create bionic eye

    Almost four decades after bionic implants created the fictional Six Million Dollar Man, scientists are far from being able to replicate a fully functioning human eye, let alone the one with zoom and infrared capabilities. But Melbourne's Monash University and the University of Melbourne are in a race to capture the market for bionic vision, offering hope to the world's 285 million blind or partially sighted people.

    The new Nokia Lumia 920 is displayed during a news conference in New York, U.S., on Wednesday, Sept. 5, 2012. Nokia Oyj unveiled two smartphones using Microsoft Corp.’s new Windows Phone software, betting on the devices to win back sales lost to the iPhone and Android handset makers.

    Apple rivals try to outshine next iPhone with cool features

    Nokia Oyj and Google Inc. are doing their best to spoil next week's iPhone announcement, touting new phones with features such as edge-to-edge screens, augmented reality and a spring-mounted camera for steadier pictures.

    In this Tuesday, Dec. 4, 2007 file photo, Employees of the Saudi Aramco oil company prepare for the first day of the Arab Oil and Gas exhibition in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Computer security technicians are still trying to unravel how destructive viruses crippled two major Arab energy companies in recent weeks, but early indications suggest the infections were the result of a highly targeted and possibly coordinated sabotage attack.

    Virus origin in Gulf computer attacks in question

    Computer security technicians are still trying to unravel how destructive viruses crippled two major Arab energy companies in recent weeks, but early indications suggest the infections were the result of a highly targeted and possibly coordinated sabotage attack. While pinpointing culprits in the shadowy world of cyber crime is tricky, some experts believe Iran itself the victim of computer attacks may have played a role. Others aren't so sure.


    How consumer-electronics makers are faring

    Makers and sellers of consumer-electronics devices have been releasing their earnings reports for the latest quarter. Here's a look at selected companies that report unit sales on phones, tablet computers and other devices. Some companies including Samsung Electronics Co. do not release data on unit sales.


    In fall Apple season, rival phone makers struggle

    It's shaping up to be a cold fall for smartphone makers other than Apple, as the trendsetter of the phone industry gears up to release the next iPhone. Nokia and Motorola revealed new phones at back-to-back press events in New York on Wednesday. The phones are impressive in their own right and sport improvements from previous models, but analysts didn't see anything about them that would change the prospect of an iPhone-dominated holiday season.

    Murata’s latest capacitor measures just 0.25 millimeter by 0.125 millimeter, right, is pointed by a mechanical pencil as it is displayed with its bigger size models. Small is big for Murata: The Japanese electronics maker has developed the world’s tiniest component known as the capacitor. And that’s big business. Capacitors, which store electric energy, are used in the dozens, even in the hundreds, in just about every type of gadget - smartphones, laptops, hybrid cars, medical equipment and digital cameras.

    Murata turns to tiniest device for big business

    Small is big for Murata: The Japanese electronics maker has developed the world's tiniest version of a component known as the capacitor. And that's potentially big business. Capacitors, which store electric energy, are used in the dozens, even in the hundreds, in just about every type of gadget — smartphones, laptops, parts for hybrid cars, medical equipment and digital cameras. Smaller componentry allows for other innovations and improvements from thinner devices to longer battery life.

    MagicJack VocalTec Ltd. climbed to the highest in five months in New York trading after the Israeli maker of phone-over-Internet technology raised its 2012 earnings forecast.

    MagicJack surges to five-month high

    MagicJack VocalTec Ltd. climbed to the highest in five months in New York trading after the Israeli maker of phone-over-Internet technology raised its 2012 earnings forecast.

    The hacker group AntiSec claims the FBI has compiled a database of 12 million Apple UDIDs — the unique numbers that identify every Apple device, including iPhones and iPads — many of them complete with the device owner’s personal information.

    Hackers obtain millions of Apple users’ info from FBI laptop

    The hacker group AntiSec claims the FBI has compiled a database of 12 million Apple UDIDs — the unique numbers that identify every Apple device, including iPhones and iPads — many of them complete with the device owner's personal information. To prove it, the Anonymous-affiliated group published one million of the IDs.

Life & Entertainment

    Designer Brian Patrick Flynn experimented with color in his basement studio. He brightened up dark red brick with flat white paint to reflect light throughout the space.

    Play with light to get the basement of your dreams

    The lowly basement gets short shrift. These subterranean spaces present a host of decorating challenges, from low ceilings and limited natural light to never-ending battles with dampness and even flooding. Yet basements can be untapped treasures.


    Fiance’s ballooning weight is causing problems

    For the last few years, her fiance has been struggling with a lot of stress trying to make money as an entrepreneur. As a result, he has been gaining weight. She loves him, but isn't sure how to support him during this time. It is really starting to affect their intimacy and relationship. Is there anything she can do?


    Online class at U of Illinois attracts 32,000

    Talk about a big class: One professor at the University of Illinois started the fall semester with nearly 32,000 students from around the world.

    This image released by Warner Premiere shows Melvin Abston as Lee Martin, left, and Nikki Crawford as Julie Martin in a scene from the new sci-fi series called “H+ The Digital Series.” Made with a budget of just under $2 million, the 48-part series by filmmaker Bryan Singer has some of the best production value the Web has yet seen.

    ‘H+’ web series might have blueprint for business success

    How much does a good Web series cost? That's been an evolving but constant question as digital series multiply. Increasingly, Internet-based series aspire to television-level quality, while trying to get by on Web-sized budgets. Enter "H+." The sci-fi series is an ambitious, 48-part show with clear intentions of raising the bar on digital series and bringing a higher standard of production value to the web.

    See a variety of airborne performers including the Royal Canadian Air Force Snowbirds on Saturday, Sept. 8, at the “Wings Over Waukegan” air show.

    Weekend picks: Wings Over Waukegan soars into town

    The Royal Canadian Air Force Snowbirds and more will show off their skills at the Wings Over Waukegan air show at the Waukegan Regional Airport today. Head to Geneva to sample a variety of wines at the Festival of the Vine. Or spend some quality time with your pooch at the Dog Days of Dundee festival in West Dundee. Comedian Paul Reiser makes a special standup comedy appearance Saturday at Zanies Comedy Club in Rosemont.

    This adaptation of a ribbon board is an adult-approved version of the dorm-room staple.

    Wallpaper alternatives that won’t leave you stuck

    Wallpaper is time-consuming to remove, leaves behind a messy residue and becomes outdated before you know it. White paint seems like a valid alternative; we've got an even quicker and less-permanent way to combat blank white walls. These homespun projects all took less than one hour to do.

    Visitors to Memphis can stroll along Beale Street, home to blues bars, barbecue restaurants, gift shops and dance clubs with a long history of influencing American music.

    5 free things to enjoy in Memphis

    The Mississippi River, the Peabody Hotel and Beale Street are all Memphis landmarks that are tourist mainstays. While they're not giving away free drinks on Beale Street, soaking up the atmosphere there, along with walking by the river and seeing the Peabody's famous ducks, are among a number of free things to see and do in Memphis.

    Designer Oscar de la Renta appears backstage before his collection is shown during Fashion Week in New York.

    Oscar de la Renta sticks it to celebrity designers

    Designer Oscar de la Renta may be a celebrity favorite, but the feeling isn't mutual when it comes to stars and athletes who want to delve into fashion design. "Today you can hit a good tennis ball and be a fashion designer," said de le Renta in an interview. "Today you can be a movie star and if your last movie didn't do too well, you become a fashion designer. But you know it's craft that you learn. It's craft of passion."


    On homes and real estate: Can’t afford repairs

    Q. My mother-in-law gave my husband, his brother, and his sister her home before she passed. It is paid off, and there is no mortgage. It is in desperate need of repairs, but none of us can afford to pay for them. Could we get a home equity line of credit?

    The home’s cozy cottage appearance from the front hides this expansive area out back for entertaining.

    Barrington home seems to expand to fit your needs

    This charming home, surrounded by lush acreage only five minutes from downtown Barrington and its train station, looks like it was plucked from the Irish countryside and placed here with its massive chimney next to the front door and white picket fence.

    Craig Shodeen recently returned to the company his father founded, and is overseeing development at Mill Creek in Geneva.

    Sho-deen adds custom building to home mix

    Kent Shodeen and his son, Craig, have long been known for planning big projects. Their company, Sho-Deen Inc., for example, is building Geneva's 2,000-home Mill Creek subdivision, which includes a golf course, lakes, parks and hiking trails. But when the economy started to falter in 2007, Craig began to think smaller.

    Solvej Schou, right, and her childhood friend, Joanna Sondheim, stand in front of Sleeping Beauty’s Castle at Disneyland in Anaheim, Calif., and rekindle memories after a day at the amusement park.

    Having fun without the kids at Disneyland

    Disneyland is not just for sugar-soaked kids. Consider, all you grown-up women out there, going for a gals' day out. That's exactly what my childhood friend Joanna and I, both of us in our 30s, recently did instead of heading to the beach or shopping. Did we channel our inner princesses? Nope. Did we regress to a state of childlike delight and strategically map out rides to conquer? Oh yes. That included diva posing in front of the Sleeping Beauty Castle and trying on, not buying, Minnie Mouse ears.

    It is recommended that you don’t tie your dog outside a store. If you have errands, use pet-friendly stores or leave your dog home.

    Web puts out the word on missing pets

    More owners are reporting lost or stolen pets, but the online nation is coming to the rescue. The number of dogs being stolen in the United States has gone up dramatically in the last few years, the American Kennel Club says. The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals says thefts skyrocket in New York every summer when residents combine walking the dog with running errands.

    Martina Garcia, right, of the Hispanic Community Organization For Life, speaks about witnessing too much violence in her community during a march and vigil against gun violence in New York’s a Harlem neighborhood. Residents of inner-city neighborhoods wracked by gun violence say they feel neglected and ignored in this presidential election year.

    Urban voters angry over silence on gun crime

    Residents of inner-city neighborhoods plagued by gun violence say they feel neglected and ignored even in a presidential election year marked by highly publicized shootings at a Colorado movie theater, a Sikh temple in Wisconsin and outside the Empire State Building — a year in which Republicans have launched a full-throated defense of gun ownership while Democrats have largely kept quiet about an issue they used to put front and center.

    Thirty-five years after leaving Earth, Voyager 1 is reaching for the stars. Sooner or later, the workhorse spacecraft will bid adieu to the solar system.

    Voyager on the edge of solar system

    Thirty-five years after leaving Earth, Voyager 1 is reaching for the stars. Sooner or later, the workhorse spacecraft will bid adieu to the solar system and enter a new realm of space — the first time a man-made object will have escaped to the other side.


    Rearranging your accessories

    Sometimes just rearranging the things we already own can make a big change in our homes. Let's explore how to display accessories in ways that perhaps we didn't think of before.


    Is lump sum reverse mortgage the right loan for seniors?

    FHA-insured reverse mortgages, also called home equity conversion mortgages, or HECMs, allow seniors to withdraw cash from their home while retaining the right to live there indefinitely. They are a potentially powerful tool for helping seniors live better lives during their retirement years, and new HECM options enlarge the possibilities.


    Associations may be liable for criminal losses

    Q. The lock on the common front door of multi-unit building is broken. I reported this to the association but the lock has not been fixed. Since I first reported this problem, two units in the building have been burglarized and video shows the burglar gaining access through the door with the broken lock. Is the association liable?


    Vent boot can protect roof with damaged flashing

    Q. A contractor friend showed me a picture of my rubber flashing at the plumbing pipes that stick up out of the roof. The rubber is almost totally gone and, luckily, we have not had that much rain this year. Is there a way to repair the flashings without removing some of the shingles?

    An elegant statue stands in the shade garden, creating a focal point.

    Focal points enhance the beauty of a landscape

    Many landscapes are lovely in your neighborhood, but there is one that stands above the rest. A bench appears just where you'd like to pause. A statue beckons you into an enchanting vignette. These aren't lovely accidents, but rather the skilled use of focal points.



    The Soapbox

    Daily Herald editors opine about Gov. Quinn's new appointment, school breakfasts and D. Rose's venture into the pizza biz, among other topics.


    Give us the details, Mr. Romney
    A Palatine letter to the editor: In his acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention, Mitt Romney said that he has a plan to create 12 million new jobs. Wouldn't it be great if Mr. Romney revealed his plan as soon as possible?


    Which statement on gay marriage is right?
    A Mount Prospect letter to the editor: Thirty-two states have held a referendum on same-sex marriage, and all 32 saw the referendum defeated. That seems to me to strongly support the quote that the majority of Americans oppose gay marriage. In his column Mr. Davis does not tell us the basis for his statement.


    Health care VEBAs are a solid alternative
    A Schaumburg letter to the editor: As more retirees lose their benefits, I think this is a nice viable alternative. This malarky of President Obama giving the stock to the unions for their votes is an urban myth started by some respected news outlets.


    Gay marriage legal? Oh, perish the thought!
    An Arlington Heights letter to the editor: Thank God many states have heroically passed constitutional amendments banning gay marriage. What if these lawmakers had focused on less-important issues like the economy, budgets and long-term goals — and not on allowing U.S. citizens to experience discriminatory practices in our society?


    Liberals have their actor-pundits, too
    A Mount Prospect letter to the editor: Less than 24 hours after Clint Eastwood spoke at the Republican National Convention, the liberally controlled news media began its mocking. It's been asked, what's he doing there? He's only an actor. Consider just one of the more in-your-face liberal or Democratic "expert" — Jon Stewart.


    A reply to the ‘lefty letter’
    A Roselle letter to the editor: To Mr. Petersen of Hoffman Estates who is seeking a reply to his "lefty letter." Sorry to disappoint you but I do not consider myself a "righty" or a "teavengilist" but a person that cares deeply about the future of my country, the United States of America.


    Schaumburg unkind to Walsh supporters
    An Addison letter to the editor: Without a doubt, the reception our (Joe Walsh) parade group received in Schaumburg was the most violent and insulting to the American ideal of free speech that I have experienced.


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