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Notebook: Devonte Graham Mauls OKC

Door to door sugar? Oh, what a marvellous idea. What’s that Mother? I’m just talking to the sugar man. Mother I’m a big boy, I can do as I wish!

Interstate 90 in western Montana mountains Photo by: Don and Melinda Crawford/UCG/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

The Rock Chalkboard

Lance Leipold explains why KU football only signed 6 players on Day 1 of early period |
“It’s obviously not a large signing class here, but this class we're very confident is going to fit well into our program,” Leipold said.

Lance Leipold tried to keep Emmett Jones on KU football staff |
Jones’ contract with KU paid him $300,000 a year. There also was a stipulation that if he was hired away while under contract, KU would be owed a $600,000 buyout. Jones left to return to a Texas Tech program where he first built his reputation as a strong recruiter and position coach.

Kansas volleyball freshman Caroline Bien becomes 10th Jayhawk to earn AVCA All-American recognition |
One day after being named to the NCAA Tournament’s Pittsburgh Regional team for her play during the Kansas volleyball team’s run to the Sweet 16, KU freshman Caroline Bien landed an even bigger honor.

QBs Miles Kendrick and Conrad Hawley leaving KU football |
Hawley, who was a member of KU’s 2021 recruiting class, arrived on campus early this past January. As a true freshman, he never appeared in a game, which will allow him to use a redshirt for this year and join another program with four years of eligibility remaining.

Players in KU football's 2022 recruiting class begin signing |
The first prospect to sign his letter of intent and formally come on board was the newest high school talent to join the class. Quarterback Ethan Vasko, who just made his commitment to KU two days earlier, was the first signing announced.

Bits o Chalk

Jacksonville Jaguars owner Shad Khan fixes his biggest mistake firing Urban Meyer; he can not afford another one - Jacksonville Jaguars Blog- ESPN
The Jacksonville Jaguars' owner had to fire coach Urban Meyer less than a year after hiring him. Not because of too many losses -- though that was definitely a problem -- but rather a long list of missteps with players, coaches and, in one instance, a woman in a bar. They kept piling up and left Khan with no choice.

Urban Meyer fired as Jacksonville Jaguars' head coach amid rocky first year
"After deliberation over many weeks and a thorough analysis of the entirety of Urban's tenure with our team, I am bitterly disappointed to arrive at the conclusion that an immediate change is imperative for everyone," owner Shad Khan said in a statement released early Thursday. "I informed Urban of the change this evening. As I stated in October, regaining our trust and respect was essential. Regrettably, it did not happen.

Texas A&M Aggies push past Alabama Crimson Tide for No. 1-ranked class on first day of early signing period
The Aggies were able to sign the No. 1 prospect overall, defensive tackle Walter Nolen, after reports surfaced that Nolen might be entertaining Tennessee. Jimbo Fisher and his staff were also able to get commitments from ESPN 300 offensive lineman Kam Dewberry and ESPN 300 defensive linemen Anthony Lucas and Enai White.

New Orleans Pelicans' Devonte' Graham hits 61-foot shot at buzzer to beat Thunder
As Devonte' Graham sat in the New Orleans Pelicans' locker room after Wednesday night's game, an Oklahoma City Thunder staffer walked in with a gift: the game ball from Graham's wild buzzer-beating 3-pointer.

Los Angeles Lakers rookie Austin Reaves 'lost for words' after overtime heroics vs. Mavericks
DALLAS -- The odds of Los Angeles Lakers rookie Austin Reaves even being in an NBA uniform on Wednesday night, let alone on the court in overtime and trusted to hit the game-winning 3 to beat the Mavericks 107-104, were astronomical.

Eraser Dust

Microbes May Be Evolving to Eat Plastic
Researchers looked at samples taken from oceans and soils around the world and found a vast number of enzymes that can degrade 10 different kinds of plastic.

The Parker Solar Probe Just Dipped Into the Sun’s Corona
The Sun, as you may know, is a giant blazing ball of nuclear fusion. It’s not the sort of thing you’d want to poke. But NASA scientists did just that, using the Parker Solar Probe to touch the Sun’s corona, making direct contact with the star’s plasma and atmosphere.

Disney+ Picks Up Goonies Remake TV Show From Fox
The idea seemed as bright and shiny as a marble bag full of jewels: a TV show about a teacher who decides to help some of her students do a shot-by-shot remake of the classic 1980s adventure The Goonies. However, the network on board, Fox, disagreed and buried it underground like it was One-Eyed Willy.

Tornadoes reported as record-setting winds lash central U.S.
The winds were record-setting. Wednesday had the most wind gusts of 75 mph or greater since at least 2004, the National Weather Service’s Storm Prediction Center said. There were 55 such gusts “and counting,” it said.

Mask mandates are back in New York and California but not in most other states : Shots - Health News : NPR
A new statewide mask mandate in California took effect Wednesday, which brings the total number of states with mask mandates to just ten. At a moment when health authorities are warning of the fast spread of the highly infectious omicron variant, states with mask mandates are outliers.

Derek Chauvin pleads guilty to violating George Floyd's rights | Reuters
Dec 15 (Reuters) - Former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin pleaded guilty on Wednesday in a federal court to charges he violated George Floyd's civil rights, likely extending his prison sentence by several years after his earlier conviction for the Black man's murder.

America’s death penalty divide: why capital punishment is getting better, and worse | Capital punishment | The Guardian
When Virginia became the first southern state to scrap capital punishment in March, it raised to 23 the number of states that have abolished the practice outright. In a further three states, governors have imposed a moratorium on executions.

Whitefish locals offer new take on ski rentals | KECI
Zack Churchill and Jonathan Kiraly opened Black Tie Ski rentals to provide a full-service door-to-door concierge experience.

Bruce Springsteen is selling his music catalog in massive deal: report
Bruce Springsteen has sold his music rights to Sony Music Entertainment in what could be the biggest deal ever struck for a single artist’s body of work, according to a report in Billboard.