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Notebook: Football Season is Right Around the Corner!

“Facts are meaningless. You can use facts to prove anything that’s even remotely true. Facts schmacts.”

SPREMO’S TORONTO FOR MON. OCT.1/01.For love of the art:Artist-sculptor Goran Gecovski working on his Photo by Boris Spremo/Toronto Star via Getty Images

The Rock Chalkboard

College Football AP Top 25 preseason rankings announced
Quarterback competitions continue to trend nationally with new starters coming to town at Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State, Texas A&M, Notre Dame and more. Will Spencer Rattler live up to his Heisman expectations at Oklahoma? Answers are coming soon with the season officially underway in less than 14 days.

Jeremy Case officially named KU basketball assistant coach
“After serving in an interim role, I’m ready to continue building long-term and sustained success within the KU basketball program,” Case said in a KU basketball release. “I couldn’t be more appreciative of the opportunity. I will do everything in my power to make coach Self, all my former teammates and all of KU alumni proud by ensuring I take care of the rich history and tradition of the program while in this position.”

Countdown to KU football (17): Will Kansas use slower tempo in 2021?
"I think this, OK: If you look statistically, time of possession really has nothing to do with winning and losing a football game," Kotelnicki said. "It is going to boil down to: When we have a possession, are we able to get points and specifically touchdowns on that possession? Some people have 14 possessions a game; some teams have nine possessions a game based off what their pace of play is. It'll have less to do with maybe how fast we're playing and more to do with the actual production on those drives."

Consistency will be key in Kansas football position battles
Kansas football offensive coordinator Andy Kotelnicki has a distinct way of speaking. He brings energy and will throw out snappy terms and catchphrases — usually grounded in a deeper football philosophy. Those traits shined through even on his stroll up to the press conference podium at Kansas football media day, as Kotelnicki shared a few jokes with those in the room before fielding questions for just shy of 15 minutes.

Lance Leipold pleased with early stages of culture change at Kansas
It took next-to-no time for that philosophy to come out at Kansas football media day. The KU coach was asked about the 2020 football season, which saw upsets happen across the country between programs that might have had a spring slate compared to those who didn't. The Jayhawks are in a somewhat similar situation in 2021, as the new KU coaches didn't arrive until the day before the spring game.

Chandler Jackson talks bond with Jeremy Case, KU basketball visit plans
Jackson, who did not yet have a Kansas offer, was in contact with then-interim assistant coach Jeremy Case. (Case has since received a promotion to the permanent assistant position.) The two began to talk around the end of the month, Jackson recalled, which led to a memorable phone call leading into Peach Jam.

Bits o Chalk

Sources - Joel Embiid, Philadelphia 76ers finalizing 4-year, $196 million supermax extension through 2026-27
The extension keeps Embiid under contract with the Sixers through the 2026-27 season for a total of $261 million. The four-time All-Star already was set to make $65 million over the final two years of his current deal.

Sacramento Kings rout Boston Celtics to claim NBA summer league title
Fittingly, it was King who dominated for Sacramento and finished with 21 points to help the Kings cruise to a 100-67 victory over the Boston Celtics on Tuesday night in front of a sparse, masked crowd that barely filled the Thomas & Mack Center's bottom bowl, an uncommon scene for a title game that has packed the venue in recent years prior to the pandemic.

Cristiano Ronaldo transfer rumours - Juventus forward fuming at 'disrespectful' talk
"More than the disrespect for me as a man and as a player, the frivolous way that my future is covered in the media is disrespectful to all the clubs involved in these rumours, as well as to their players and staff. My story at Real Madrid has been written. It's been recorded. In words and numbers, in trophies and titles, in records and in headlines. It's in the Museum at the Bernabeu Stadium and it's also in the minds of every fan of the club.

Why the Little League World Series is 'all that is good about baseball'
That's how it works at the Little League World Series. It's all about the kids; the kids are kings; the kids show you the way, not the other way around. The pandemic canceled the LLWS last year, perhaps the biggest loss in the sports world, but now, gloriously, it is back. And even with COVID restrictions, there's still nothing better than kids playing baseball.

Eraser Dust

Noel Gallagher reveals he sometimes FORGETS the lyrics to his iconic songs | Daily Mail Online
'My band will say, "Are they the right lyrics?" And I go, 'I don't think so'. I've played Don't Look Back In Anger a billion times and sometimes I think, 'What is the first line?'.'

Florida sanctions school districts for mandating that students wear masks
The actual penalties by the board, which comprises DeSantis appointees, are yet to be determined, but the votes marked the first punishments for districts that chose to mandate masks amid a surge in Covid cases from the delta variant of the coronavirus as the school year gets underway.

The Taliban Destroy An Enemy's Statue — And Add To Fears Over Their Rule : NPR
KABUL, Afghanistan — The Taliban have blown up the statue of a Shiite militia leader who fought against them during Afghanistan's civil war in the 1990s, according to photos circulating on Wednesday, sowing further doubt about their claims to have become more moderate.

Fear of refugees must not shape the response to Afghanistan’s crisis | Daniel Trilling | The Guardian
All too often, our response to disaster is dominated by dire predictions – that there will simply be too many people to help, that they risk pulling us under too. The shadow of the 2015 refugee crisis – a sudden rush of people across Europe’s borders that “should not be repeated”, in the words of Armin Laschet, Germany’s likely next chancellor – is shaping the west’s response to Afghanistan. The doomiest observers see a dry run for the coming wave of climate refugees: as the analyst Anatol Lieven recently put it, the Taliban takeover in Afghanistan and the recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report “are harbingers of a storm that may test western democracy to destruction”.

Biden administration faces daunting odds of pulling off massive Afghanistan evacuation in 2 weeks - CNNPolitics
On Tuesday, US officials across the government provided some details about plans for the massive US evacuation. But many key specifics remain unanswered, including exactly how many Americans are still in Afghanistan, how many Afghans the US military believes it can evacuate and whether the plan will extend beyond the withdrawal deadline just two weeks away.

Review: Dead & Company Kick Off U.S. Tour With Resilience and Hits - Rolling Stone
They kicked off with “Touch of Grey,” their first time opening with the MTV hit in five years. It usually serves as their triumphant closer, but the message of survival hits hard these days, and it was a perfect way to set the tone for the evening. The crowd jumped up and down, carefully clutching their cardboard tubes of posters, chanting the mantra “We will get by! We will survive!” It was difficult to find a moment where keyboardist Jeff Chimenti and bassist Oteil Burbridge weren’t beaming — these guys have missed us just as much as we missed them.

The School Culture Wars Over Masks, CRT and Gender Identity - The New York Times
“The water pressure is higher than it has ever been and there are more leaks than I have fingers,” said Kevin Boyles, a school board official in Brainerd, Minn., who said he recently received 80 emails in three days about face masks. He described being followed to his car and called “evil” after a board meeting where he supported a commitment to equity. Another time, a man speaking to the board about race quoted the Bible and said he would “dump hot coals on all your heads.”

Poll of the Day


Who is the better musician?

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  • 70%
    YoYo Ma
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  • 29%
    Eddie Van Halen
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