The 2015 MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference In 140 Seconds

We liveblogged Sloan, we wrote about what it was like to be a woman at Sloan, and now we have video and audio proof that the 2015 MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference happened. Here, in under 3 minutes, is what you missed at the world’s preeminent conference for people who love sports, data and every place they intersect:And here’s all the audio we recorded from the convention center:The State of Sports Analytics with Jonah Keri, Kirk Goldsberry, and Jody AvirganAudio Playerhttps://fivethirtyeight.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/jonah_kirk_jody-at-sloan.mp300:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.Live From Sloan: Kid Stats GeeksAudio Playerhttps://fivethirtyeight.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/kidsatsloan.mp300:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.Montage: Women at SloanAudio Playerhttps://fivethirtyeight.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/womenatsloan.mp300:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.How Bayern Munich Wins With DataAudio Playerhttps://fivethirtyeight.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/carl_bayernanalytics.mp300:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.Live From Sloan: Houston Rockets GM Daryl MoreyAudio Playerhttps://fivethirtyeight.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/flowers_morey.mp300:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.Live From Sloan: Dean Oliver Of The Sacramento KingsAudio Playerhttps://fivethirtyeight.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/carl_deanoliver.mp300:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume. read more

Ed Reed Wants To End Career With Ravens

Ed Reed, who at one time talked as if he was prepared to hold out or retire from the Baltimore Ravens — where he established himself as a Hall of Fame safety — now says he wants to and expects finish out his career there.Reed, 33,showed up at training camp looking fit and said contract negotiations are already underway to lock him up for another few years. The former NFL Defensive Player of the Year is in the final season of a six-year, $40 million contract and is due a $7.2 million base salary this season.“Talks have already been there,” Reed said. “I want to be here. We will get that done when it’s time to cross that bridge. I’m good with football right now. I know the Ravens know I want to be here. I wouldn’t give myself to the football team like I do if I didn’t want to be here.”It was somewhat of a surprise that Reed showed up on time for camp after bypassing on the mandatory minicamp in June and pretty much shunning the team all offseason.“I’m here, man,” Reed said. “What transpired months back transpired. What happened because of what I had to deal with family-wise and what I’ve been going through for the last 11 years now in the league, you know it’s always a time when you have to assess yourself.”Reed comports himself in front of microphones as he does on the field: recklessly.“I choose to deal with it the way I deal with it,” Reed said. “That way, young guys know it. Their parents will know it. I’m not a guy who holds things back. That’s why you get what you get. And if I didn’t do it that way, you wouldn’t have the information to write about.”Reed does not have an agent and surmised contract issues might have stemmed from his lack of representation.“Being that I don’t have an agent, I don’t know how they’re going to go about it,” Reed said. “I know they tried to deal with things last season. That’s why the talks have been the way they’ve been. I didn’t want a middle man in between. I felt like I can handle it, but you do need somebody to kind of say the things you’re not able to say because you are in the business.”Reed, who has 57 interceptions in his career, said he feels good and would like to play another few seasons. “But the body tells you something different,” he said. “There is a business side to it. Not every story plays out the way you want it to be. When we cross that bridge, you guys will know.” read more

Dwight Howard Responds to Kareem AbdulJabbar

Dwight Howard has responded to the recent criticism of NBA legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, asserting that he is not a stupid basketball player.“Dwight is an extraordinary athlete and has incredible athletic ability, but basketball is a game where the most important muscle that you use on the court is the one between your ears,” Abdul-Jabbar said on ESPN’s “First Take” on Thursday. “Dwight’s basketball IQ is not up to speed for him to be a dominant player.”Howard, who left the LA Lakers to sign with the Houston Rockets this offseason, had a ready response.“You can’t win three Defensive Player of the Year trophies and be stupid. That can’t be done,” he said, according to the Houston Chronicle. “And I don’t think any coach that has ever coached me has said I have a low IQ for basketball.“Have I done some dumb stuff on the floor? Yes, every player has. Have I done some stupid things in life? Yes, it’s life. We make mistakes and learn from them. It is what it is. I think I am very intelligent when it comes to the game of basketball. I have been playing since I was 3 years old. Each year, I get a little smarter.“People will have something to say. Is what it is. I’m in (Houston) now. This city has my back and we are going to ride together.”Howard has made the All-Star team seven times in his nine years in the NBA. He also averaged 18.3 points, 12.9 rebounds and 2.2 blocks in his career. read more

Michael Beasley Is Instant Offense But Hes Stuck Being An NBA Nomad

DENJ. SmithW. ChandlerN. RobinsonW. BartonT. LylesA. Harrington The Knicks love players like BeasleyTeams that rostered the most “microwave scorers” on their bench, since 2008-09 If a single sequence could sum up the season of Knicks forward Michael Beasley — or perhaps even his career — it might be the one from the first game of the year, in which he hit a corner jumper but then came down on the foot of Russell Westbrook, rolling his ankle and falling to the floor in pain.Beasley laid there for few moments as the action flowed to the other end, only to stand up, hobble back to the corner and then raise his hand to signal he was open and ready to shoot once New York regained possession. The play illustrated that Beasley is always ready to shoot — even if he’s about to leave a game because of injury. He always believes he’s capable of a bucket. (A similar scenario unfolded Friday in Milwaukee, where he sought to rejoin an offensive possession by calling for the ball shortly after getting hurt.1He has something of a history of these incidents: Back in 2012, he launched a fadeaway jumper during a stoppage in play — and made it — immediately after dislocating the index finger on his shooting hand, which you can hear pop out of place at the four-second mark of this YouTube video. He’d then play with five stitches in that shooting hand the following day, and shooting 8-of-15 for 19 points. Both examples can be seen below.)Video Playerhttps://fivethirtyeight.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/beasleyvsokc.mp400:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.Video Playerhttps://fivethirtyeight.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/beasleyvsmil.mp400:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.“Like a sniper’s always ready to take a shot. Always ready to take the shot,” Beasley said in a Q&A with the New York Post. “You gotta kind of have that hitman mentality when it comes to this game.”The highly entertaining Beasley, who refers to himself as “a walking bucket,” might embody the idea of instant offense — reserve players who can get baskets as soon as you plug them in, but don’t really contribute to the defensive end — better than anyone in basketball. Put him in the game, and you know you’re going to get points shortly thereafter. And that likely explains how he ended up with the Knicks, who’ve employed more microwave scoring guards and forwards off the bench2Guards and forwards had to meet four criteria to make this list: They had to average 25 or more points per 100 possessions on offense during a season, log a -0.5 rating or worse in defensive Box Plus/Minus, play off the bench more than half the time, and play a minimum of 41 games. The data came from Basketball-Reference.com’s Play Index. than just about any other team the past 10 years. Among the traits Beasley shares with many of his offense-heavy predecessors in New York: His stints with various teams have always been relatively short despite his scoring talent. He’s never stuck with one team for more than two years at a time, setting him apart from the average first-round draft pick, who spends an average of 3.8 years with their original team before moving on to a second club, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.3This average reflects the 10 drafts from 1988 to 1997. Elias analyzed draft data from those years because it’s the most recent 10-year stretch for which no players are still playing for their original team, which means the data won’t change anymore. For instance, Dirk Nowitzki was drafted in 1998 and has only ever played for the Mavericks, so we technically can’t finish calculating how long his initial stint with Dallas will end up being. Likewise, San Antonio’s Tony Parker, drafted in 2001, and Oklahoma City’s Nick Collison, picked in 2003, are still with their original franchises. That raises the question of what, if anything, the 29-year-old Beasley can do to change his well-established reputation as a scorer and not much else.For fans who rely mostly on the eye test, Beasley’s innate scoring ability feels like nothing short of a necessity for a New York roster that has just two true playmakers in Kristaps Porzingis and Tim Hardaway Jr. By contrast, those more interested in analytics may find the lefty’s game grating due to his shot selection and his defense — the latter, in particular, should be better, given his prototypical size for a combo forward. (He doesn’t provide enough resistance or get into shooters’ bodies as they drive toward the basket.)Video Playerhttps://fivethirtyeight.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/beasley.mp400:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.Video Playerhttps://fivethirtyeight.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/beasond.mp400:0000:0000:59Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.Regardless of where you stand on the former No. 2 overall pick, though, the reality is this: Beasley finds the bottom of the net more than any other NBA reserve on a per-minute basis. In fact, just six players total — Giannis Antetokounmpo, Kyrie Irving, LeBron James, Anthony Davis, Kevin Durant, and Westbrook — outpace him there.He leans heavily on shots that some would call him foolish for taking. According to data from Second Spectrum and NBA Advanced Stats, Beasley owns the NBA’s eighth-lowest quantified Shot Quality (qSQ),4Among those who’ve taken at least 400 shots from the field this season. which tells you how hard a shot is to make by measuring how likely it is to go in if it’s taken by an average player. “But he’s got great body control,” Knicks coach Jeff Hornacek told me. “Sometimes you’ll think it’s a wild shot, but he’s so smooth and in control of it. And he makes plenty of them.”To Beasley’s credit, he’s been shrewd about turning down 3s, instead opting for looks closer to the basket. A career-low 10 percent of his shot attempts this season are long, midrange 2s, and a career-high 63 percent of his tries are coming from inside 10 feet. As such, he’s on pace to finish a third consecutive season shooting better than 50 percent from the field. He’s logging 31 points per 100 possessions, and he already has three 30-point games to his credit, including one in which fans at Madison Square Garden repeatedly chanted “MVP” when Beasley went to the line for free throws.All of which makes it even more curious that he has essentially lived a nomadic basketball life.The player himself has been quick to acknowledge that he got into trouble off the court and acted immature early in his career. But he feels that he’s still perceived as undisciplined years later, even as teammates and front offices have been pleasantly surprised by how professional he is.“He works hard, and is always the first one to the gym, and that’s something I didn’t know about him,” said Knicks forward Lance Thomas, the team’s co-captain and longest-tenured player. “He’s always smiling, having a good time. His approach is a lot better than the average person would think based on all the noise that surrounded him.”One obstacle to finding a perfect basketball marriage: Beasley’s position and on-the-court style don’t generally lend themselves to playing alongside many of the stars he’s teamed up with. This season, he’s played fewer than 200 minutes with Porzingis (whom he usually subs in for). Similarly, last season in Milwaukee he didn’t often share the court with Antetokounmpo, who played a hybrid forward role. (He cites lack of minutes as part of the reason he chose to move on and sign with the Knicks.) Beasley wasn’t always the most natural fit to play alongside LeBron in Miami, either, since James’s teams have often sought to use a stable of established 3-point shooters to open up paint for the four-time MVP. By definition, needing to play separately from a team’s franchise player means someone like Beasley wouldn’t play more than 15 minutes or so per game, barring that star teammate getting injured or getting into foul trouble.Any way you slice it, it’s still a bit too soon to know whether Beasley’s never-ending carousel of teams will finally stop for a while in New York, or if he’ll make yet another stop after this season. But even if he does move on, one thing is nearly certain: His buckets will join him in the next city. Players DALJ. TerryV. CarterR. BeauboisC. VillanuevaJ. Barea NYKM. BeasleyJ. SmithN. RobinsonD. WilliamsC. CopelandA. Harrington MILM. BeasleyC. MaggetteL. RidnourE. BoykinsH. Warrick PHOM. BeasleyG. GreenI. ThomasL. BarbosaM. ReddM. Teletovic “Microwave scorers” are defined as guards and forwards with a minimum of 41 games, who averaged 25 points per 100 possessions, logged a -0.5 or lower defensive Box Plus/Minus and came in off the bench in at least half their games. The players needed to do that at least once in order to count toward team’s total.Source: Basketball-Reference.com team123456 read more

Breaking News Miami Needs LeBron James on the Floor

Game 1 of the NBA Finals was a gift to headline writers and pun-lovers everywhere: The Miami Heat may have been undone by the San Antonio heat!A broken air-conditioning system left the AT&T Center sweltering and contributed to a series of painful leg cramps that forced LeBron James to the bench during a crucial stretch of the fourth quarter. James exited with 7 minutes and 31 seconds left in the game. At that moment, the Heat had a two-point lead and a 62.2 percent chance of winning Game 1, according to the win probabilities models at InPredictable. From there, however, the Spurs went on a 26-9 streak, winning the game 110-95. James reappeared for just a single possession before heading back to the bench.We probably shouldn’t read too much into the Spurs’ Game 1 win; forget the x’s and o’s and advanced analytics, the biggest factor simply may have been how many minutes James played.In the 33 minutes he was on the floor, the Heat and Spurs were even. In the 15 minutes James was on the bench, the Spurs were +15. That’s a big swing, but it’s not surprising. Here’s Miami’s +/- per 48 minutes in previous Spurs-Heat run-ins:Miami’s +/- Per 48 Minutes Against the SpursOne indirect result of James missing a big chunk of the fourth quarter: San Antonio’s Danny Green got a chance to shine. Green made all four of his shots, including three 3-pointers, in the final quarter. Although James wasn’t specifically guarding him earlier in the game, Green clearly benefited from the way the Spurs’ system functioned in James’s absence — not just making shots, but getting more of them. With James on the bench, Green attempted four shots in nine minutes. When James was on the floor, Green attempted just five shots in 19 minutes, missing all of them.There was also one other really interesting trend in that pivotal fourth quarter: The pace of the game slowed.A Slower Fourth QuarterPace, the statistic, is a measure of possessions per 48 minutes. In the fourth quarter, the game slowed to a crawl, about 11 possessions per 48 minutes slower than the slowest pace any team averaged during the regular season. In a small sample, pace can be legitimately skewed by clusters of offensive rebounds and turnovers (turnovers increase pace by changing possession and offensive rebounds slow pace by extending a possession). But the fourth quarter pace split in Game 1 is significant because those factors should have led to a faster game. Each team turned the ball over four times, and there was just one offensive rebound in the quarter.Despite being a slightly better offensive rebounding team and forcing slightly fewer turnovers than the Heat, the Spurs played at a much faster pace during the regular season. In our Finals’ preview, we talked about the Spurs’ ability to extend possessions with movement and passing as an antidote to the Heat’s high-pressure trapping defense. The fact that they were able to score so successfully at such a slow pace indicates that, for a quarter at least, the Spurs’ offense worked exactly as designed.All of these little numbers help tell the story of Game 1, but everything circles back to a single number: 33 — James’s minutes played. That number should change in Game 2, and that has the potential to change everything else. read more

Clutch Buckeyes jump around in Wisconsin

MADISON, Wis. – Urban Meyer paced up and down the Ohio State sideline, staring at his play sheet and presumably looking for answers. Buckeye players sat on the benches, quietly listening to instructions yelled out by their position coaches. Fans clad in scarlet and gray stood in disbelief as Wisconsin faithful screamed and jumped with joy around them. Nearly everyone associated with the OSU football program – those in attendance and probably those watching on TV, too – were noticeably tense after the Badgers scored with eight seconds remaining in regulation to force overtime Saturday night. OSU went on to win the contest at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison, Wis., 21-14, allowing Buckeye Nation to breathe a collective sigh of relief. But maybe there was no reason to be nervous in the first place. Winning close contests is what the Buckeyes have been doing all season. Saturday was the second overtime game of the year, the sixth outing in which OSU was either tied or trailing at some point in the second half and the fifth battle that was decided by one score. And OSU (11-0) won every single one of those games, keeping the dream of a perfect season alive. The win against Wisconsin did more than just continue the Buckeyes undefeated trek, too. It handed OSU a Big Ten Leaders Division Championship, and propelled the Buckeyes to a No. 4 ranking by the Associated Press heading into the final game of the season against No. 20-ranked Michigan. In a season in which the Buckeyes are ineligible for the postseason, OSU has some hardware. With its high ranking in the AP poll, a chance for an AP National Championship is possible for OSU as well. Above it all, they just keep winning. “I think that this team won’t lose. We refuse to lose. That’s what great teams are made of. They find ways to win. They come into tough environments and just come out with W’s,” said senior linebacker Zach Boren. In the many close games OSU has played in this season, they’ve seemed to almost always make a play when they need to. Saturday was no different. After struggling for four quarters, the Buckeye offense scored with ease in overtime. OSU redshirt junior running back Carlos Hyde capped a four-play drive in the extra session with a powering 2-yard touchdown run. OSU’s defense then stopped Wisconsin, ending the game on a fourth-down pass break-up by junior safety Christian Bryant. It was a play late in the fourth quarter that will likely stand out among OSU’s defensive highlights, though. Wisconsin senior running back Montee Ball came into the game needing two touchdowns to break the NCAA’s career touchdowns record. Ball tied the record on a 7-yard touchdown in the second quarter, jumping over OSU sophomore linebacker Ryan Shazier and into the end zone in the process. The senior tailback had a chance to get the record on a fourth-down run in the game’s final minutes. But Shazier got the better of him in the duo’s second meeting near the goal line. The sophomore linebacker met Ball mid-air, slammed his helmet into the Wisconsin playmaker’s arms and popped the ball loose, preventing a score. While the play was basically irrelevant in determining the game’s final outcome – Wisconsin later got the ball back and scored to force overtime – it did prevent history from happening. Shazier, and the rest of his teammates, didn’t want to be the team Ball broke the record against. “The thing is, we knew that he needed two (touchdowns) to break the record and we were not going to allow him to break it on us,” Shazier said. “So we gave him the tie or whatever, but we were not going to allow him to break the record.” Shazier said he saw the play coming, too. “I knew for a fact that they were going to give him the ball, they try to let him break records or whatever. Fourth-and-one, you’re going to put it in your best player’s hands. I knew he was jumping, and once he jumped I knew I was going to jump,” he said. OSU did make its fair share of big plays against Wisconsin, but Saturday showed that the Buckeyes are capable of winning a game in which they don’t play to the best of their abilities. Sophomore quarterback and Heisman candidate Braxton Miller was bottled up by the Badger defense, throwing for only 97 yards while running for just 48. Miller didn’t score a touchdown for the first time in 18 games. The 236 yards of total offense attained by OSU were a season-low. On defense, Ball and the Wisconsin running game had little trouble shredding through the Buckeyes’ front. The Badgers had 206 yards rushing – 191 coming from Ball – and lowly heralded redshirt senior quarterback Curt Phillips threw for 154 yards and the game-tying touchdown. OSU prevailed through it, though. According to Buckeye players and coaches, that means more than winning easily. “We have a saying and I just shared that with them – ‘A team that refuses to be beat won’t be beat,’” said Meyer, the first-year OSU coach. OSU’s struggles in the past – including a 6-7 season and coaching change last year, along with close calls against less-heralded programs like Indiana and Purdue this season – prepared them for the challenges they faced Saturday. “We’ve been through a lot of adversity. This team has been through so much,” said junior wide receiver Corey Brown, who returned a punt for a touchdown in the first half of the game. “We came out, even though the adversity, and came through.” OSU has one game remaining, a contest against Michigan Saturday. The last Buckeye team to go undefeated, the 2002 squad led by former coach Jim Tressel, will be honored at half time. In order for OSU to achieve perfection, they’ll likely have to go through some adversity Saturday. Thankfully for the Buckeyes, they’ve been there plenty of times before this season. OSU and Michigan are scheduled to kick off at noon Saturday in Ohio Stadium. The game is set to be broadcast by ABC. read more

Agony of defeat looms over Ohio State mens basketball

LOS ANGELES – The agony that often comes with playing in March was ever so evident following Ohio State’s game Saturday evening. Aaron Craft and Deshaun Thomas slowly made their way to a press conference after their loss to Wichita State with their eyes glassed over and their heads down. Inside the Buckeyes’ locker room, teammates of the junior guard and forward were even more noticeably distraught than their veteran leaders. Freshman guard Amedeo Della Valle sat in a chair with his arms crossed, his cheeks puffed and tears streaming down his face. Sophomore point guard Shannon Scott slumped in a corner with a white towel covering his head. Sophomore forwards Sam Thompson and LaQuinton Ross stared blankly into the wreckage of emotional despair flooding the area around them. Redshirt senior forward Evan Ravenel and junior guard Lenzelle Smith Jr. poured over their phones, never looking up. Pain and sorrow showcased by student-athletes is commonplace following a loss in the NCAA Tournament, as the Buckeyes experienced in the West Region’s Elite Eight contest at Staples Center Saturday afternoon, when heavy underdog Wichita State ended OSU’s season in a 70-66 upset. But that doesn’t make defeat any easier to cope with, as displayed by the postgame scene of the No. 2-seed following a loss to the No. 9-seeded Shockers. Never is college basketball more equally cruel and rewarding than it is during the three-week roller coaster of emotions from early March until the first weekend in April. From the NCAA Tournament’s first round through the Final Four, the sting of losing and thrill of winning are as heightened as ever. It was just two days prior to OSU’s run coming to a close when the Buckeyes’ locker room was a place of smiles and laughs. Thursday evening, after OSU beat No. 6 seed Arizona, 73-70, in the Sweet 16, the Lakers’ clubhouse – inhabited by the Buckeyes during their time in Los Angeles – was filled with happiness. Craft, jumping up and down behind a sea of reporters, lifted his jersey up to his mouth in an attempt to distract Ross – the game’s hero who hit a 3-pointer with two seconds left to give OSU the win – who was being interviewed on camera by the Big Ten Network. Scott, Smith and Ravenel argued over who was superior in the Nintendo 64 game “Mario Kart.” “Whose name is at the top of the leader board, Lenzelle?” Scott teased. “I’m clearly the best, don’t listen to them,” Ravenel roared from across the room. There was none of that Saturday. “It hurts,” Craft said. “We didn’t come out with the same intensity, the same fire today, and they did. It’s tough and it hurts.” Part of the aching in the Buckeyes’ hearts can likely be attributed to the team that they lost to. OSU entered Saturday’s bout with Wichita State as unquestioned favorites. The Shockers are a mid-major that didn’t even win their conference, the Missouri Valley. Wichita State’s roster is comprised of mid-to-lower level recruits, none of whom likely have a future in the NBA. The Buckeyes returning to the Final Four after losing to Kansas in New Orleans last season was a near certainty to many. Of the dozens of national analysts that predicted the contest’s outcome, none went with the Shockers. But Gregg Marshall’s squad proved against the Buckeyes that his team wears sneakers, not slippers, even though the apparently non-Cinderella program is making its first appearance in the Final Four since 1965. “They were better than I thought,” Ross said. More so, however, the suffering showcased by OSU’s players following the game is attributed to the simple logic that this specific team will never play another game together. It’s a thought that never really enters the heads of the 20-something players until the final horn sounds. For Ravenel, he’ll never don an OSU uniform again. “It is tough. You definitely don’t want to leave a place like Ohio State because it is an awesome place. The love and support you get here is second to none,” Ravenel said. Never during OSU’s game against the Shockers did the concept that the season could end enter the mind of the players. Not even when Wichita State got up by 20 points early on in the second half. “Even though we were down by so many points, we still had the feeling that we were going to be OK,” Smith said. “You think as long as you play, it’s not going to happen to you and you’re not going to lose the game.” But OSU did lose the game, and with the loss, the minds of the 12 Buckeyes that dressed for the contest were clouded when asked to reflect on the season. The Buckeyes finished 29-8, won the Big Ten Tournament and had an 11-game winning streak from mid-February until Saturday night. Thad Matta’s squad had four wins against top-10 teams this season: Michigan, Michigan State (twice) and Indiana. All OSU players could mostly think about Saturday, though, was the loss, and moving forward. “There’s a lot of positives, but at this moment you don’t think about those,” Smith said. “Right now the only thing going through my head is that the season is over.” Some already looked forward to next season. OSU loses just one player to graduation in Ravenel. Thomas, who said he going to “take some time” to make a decision on whether or not he’s coming back, could jump to the NBA. Everyone else is returning. Craft and Smith will be seniors. The four sophomores that carried OSU in recent stretches – Scott, Ross, Thompson and center Amir Williams – will be savvied veterans. “For my teammates and brothers that are still going to be here, we have some work to do. It’s definitely a bad feeling right now, but we need to make sure that this doesn’t happen again next year,” Smith said. The man that could wrap his head around what the Buckeyes accomplished this season was Matta, who sat in a red chair at the front of OSU’s locker room. The coach smiled every time someone asked him to reflect on the past year. “Everybody remembers the last game. I’m not going to,” Matta said. “I’m going to remember this season, because I’m very, very proud of what these guys accomplished this year.” In time, Matta’s players will likely feel the same way. But not yet. read more

Mens Basketball Ohio State shows fast and loose defense in Big Ten

Ohio State freshman guard Duane Washington Jr. (4) runs for a loose ball in the first half of the game against Indiana at the Big Ten tournament in Chicago on Mar. 14. Ohio State won 79-74. Credit: Casey Cascaldo | Photo EditorCHICAGO — Ohio State was never a team that excelled in forcing turnovers. The Buckeyes forced an average of 12.4 turnovers per game heading into the Big Ten tournament, No. 8 in the Big Ten. But in its 79-75 victory against Indiana, Ohio State was different. The Buckeyes forced 17 turnovers, 12 of which were steals, the most steals they have recorded in a game this season and only the second time they have recorded double-digit steals on the year. With that success in forcing turnovers, Ohio State took advantage, recording 24 points off of turnovers, 17 of which came in the first half, with 15 fast-break points. Ohio State head coach Chris Holtmann said these numbers came from his team just playing actively and with energy. But it was with an energy he had not seen this season. “We were better at converting in transition in this game than we have been all year,” Holtmann said. “We have been catastrophic in transition, but we were really good today. Better decisions, more decisive and a lot of that was off of our defense.” That’s the Holtmann philosophy: to point the success of the fast-break offense to the defense. This mantra has been ingrained in the minds of the players on the bench and the coaches on his staff. It’s the mentality that brought Ohio State its first win since Feb. 26 and an opportunity at a third round date with Michigan State. As opposed to other games, Holtmann said he wanted to see his team be “free and loose” when taking on the Hoosiers. The head coach mentioned that this may have affected the Buckeyes’ shot selection in the first half, but he would rather have offensive struggles than a tight team on the floor. These offensive struggles were familiar to this Ohio State team. In the three-game absence of sophomore forward Kaleb Wesson, who was serving a suspension for a violation of athletic department rules, the Buckeyes shot 32.6 percent from the floor. And even with Wesson on the floor, the struggles continued, making 3-of-14 as a team to start the game. Even with the rough start, Holtmann was still courtside, arms folded in front of him, nodding approvingly early in the first half. That was not the number he was focused on. In that same stretch, Indiana had made two of its first 15 attempts from the field. And Ohio State held a 13-9 lead. Ohio State was more focused on limiting opportunities for the Hoosiers than creating opportunities for itself, something Holtmann and the Buckeyes have tried to make gospel. “Our coach always say ‘lock in on defense, pay attention to defensive detail and the scouting report and let the offense take care of itself,’” freshman guard Luther Muhammad said. “They know shots might not fall,” Ohio State sophomore guard Musa Jallow said. “But if we are playing defense, it doesn’t matter.” The shots eventually came for Ohio State. Coming into a first-half possession shooting 21.4 percent from the field, Muhammad recorded a steal, passing it up the court to freshman guard Duane Washington for an easy layup. The Buckeyes proceeded to make five of their next seven attempts, only one of which was a 3. Near the end of the first half, sophomore forward Kyle Young connected on a second-chance hook shot in the paint, the chance coming off an Indiana turnover. The Buckeyes proceeded to make seven of their next nine. Young saw how effective fast-break baskets and scores off turnovers can be, especially for a team that had not relied on them before this season. “Converting the fast break points were huge tonight because I think in a couple previous of our games, we really didn’t have that much,” Young said. “We could notice that in the outcome.” Despite being the top scoring team in the Big Ten, averaging 79.7 points per game and shooting 48.9 percent from the field, Michigan State does have an Achilles heel: turnovers. Projected StartersOhio State (19-13, 9-12 Big Ten)G — C.J. Jackson — Senior, 13.0 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 3.5 apgG — Luther Muhammad — Freshman, 9.8 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 2.0 apgG — Musa Jallow — Sophomore, 2.8 ppg, 2.8 rpg, 0.3 apgF — Andre Wesson — Junior, 9.0 ppg, 4.3 rpg, 1.5 apgF — Kaleb Wesson — Sophomore, 14.5 ppg, 6.3 rpg, 1.8 apgNo. 6 Michigan State (25-6 ,16-4 Big Ten)G — Cassius Winston — Junior, 19.0 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 7.6 apgG — Matt McQuaid — Senior, 9.3 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 2.3 apgF — Aaron Henry — Freshman, 5.3 ppg, 3.4 rpg, 1.4 apgF — Kenny Goins — Redshirt senior, 8.3 ppg, 9.1 rpg, 2.2 apgF — Xavier TIllman — Sophomore, 9.3 ppg, 7.0 rpg, 1.7 apgThe Spartans have the second-worst turnover margin in the conference and average 13 per game. In their first two games against the Spartans, turnovers were something the Buckeyes could not exploit. In Michigan State’s 86-77 win against Ohio State on Jan. 5, the Spartans recorded 12 turnovers and the Buckeyes recorded seven steals. But Ohio State recorded only 12 points off those turnovers with three fast-break points. In Michigan State’s 62-44 win against Ohio State on Feb. 17, the Spartans had 10 turnovers, seven of which came from Ohio State steals. But the Buckeyes had five points off turnovers and nine fast-break points. Holtmann said he knows who Michigan State is: an elite team capable of being a national title contender. But with the game Ohio State played against Indiana and the strategy Holtmann had against the Hoosiers, a similar strategy could prove impactful in the Buckeyes’ third game against Michigan State “When it’s postseason tournament play, it’s hard to get easy baskets,” Jallow said. “Being able to steal as many of those as you can, it makes everything a lot easier.” Ohio State will take on No. 6 Michigan State in the third round of the Big Ten tournament Friday at 12:30 p.m. read more

Mens Volleyball Ohio State wins first fiveset match of season against No

Redshirt sophomore Jake Hanes (16) makes contact with the ball at the game against George Mason on Jan. 18 at St. John Arena in Columbus. Credit: Ethan Clewell | Senior Reporter.Despite 34 service errors, the Ohio State men’s volleyball team used its high-powered offense to defeat No. 13 Purdue Fort Wayne in a five-set thriller, 18-25, 25-16, 21-25, 32-30 and 15-9. The Buckeyes (9-18, 4-9 MIVA) committed more errors Thursday night than any other match this season, but a 67-48 kill advantage helped propel them over the Mastodons (16-10, 8-5 MIVA). The win marked Ohio State’s first victory over a top 15 opponent and its lone triumph in four five-set matches this season. Ohio State head coach Pete Hanson said the win was just what his team needed. “This is a great memory in St. John Arena,” Hanson said. “That’s a great team win.” Hanson praised the offensive production from freshman outside hitter Sean Ryan and sophomore opposite hitter Jake Hanes, but reserved his utmost admiration for junior libero Chase Moothart, who struck three aces during critical moments in the second and fifth sets. The Mastodons and the Buckeyes split the first 14 points in the fifth set before a service error by Purdue Fort Wayne and a kill by junior outside hitter Reese Devilbiss gave Ohio State a 9-7 lead. A kill by Purdue Fort Wayne senior opposite hitter Alex Dickmann stalled the Buckeyes’ run, but back-to-back kills by Ryan and an ace by Moothart established a 12-8 Ohio State lead. Kills by Hanes and sophomore middle blocker Austin Gerwig propelled the Buckeyes to match point and a block by Gerwig and Ryan finished the set, 15-9, and the match 3-2 for Ohio State. Ryan, who finished with 16 kills on .444 hitting, recording three blocks and three digs said that enjoying himself helped him execute. “I just had fun, and usually when I’m having fun, that means things are working out well,” Ryan said. “After I got in a rhythm, I knew that if I got my passing down, Sanil [Thomas] was able to make plays.” The Buckeyes opened the second set with a three-point run and never looked back. Ohio State used four more scoring runs of three or more points, including kills by Hanes, Leeson and Ryan, en-route to a 25-16 victory. Moothart served up two crucial aces to close out the set and Hanes provided five kills and got in on four blocks for the Buckeyes. Hanes finished with a team-leading 30 kills, adding two aces, five digs and five total blocks. Despite the turnaround, the Buckeyes struggled to stop the Mastodons in the first set. Purdue Fort Wayne hit at a blistering .706 clip with 12 kills and an ace. After taking a 3-2 lead early, the Mastodons scored 13 of the next 17 points, including five Ohio State errors and kills by junior middle blocker Richie Diedrich and junior outside hitter Pelegrin Vargas, extending their lead to as many as nine. An ace and a kill by Hanes as well as kills by Ryan and freshman middle blocker Ethan Talley helped the Buckeyes cut the lead to five late in the set, 23-18, but two errors halted the Ohio State comeback, handing the first set to the Mastodons, 25-18. Vargas tallied 13 kills, an ace, three digs and three total blocks on the night, while Dickmann led the team with 16 kills and nine digs. The turning point for the Buckeyes came in the fourth set, the closest set of the match, which featured 22 ties and three lead changes. With the score tied at 20, the Buckeyes had back-to-back kill-error sequences, keeping the Mastodons even at 22. A kill by Hanes and an attack error by Vargas brought Ohio State to match point, but two errors ensured the set would go to overtime. After trading points the next 12 points, back-to-back kills by Hanes gave Ohio State the 32-30 victory and guaranteed a fifth set. Ohio State will return for its final match in St. John Arena and the regular season at 7 p.m. Saturday against Ball State. read more

Mens Basketball Former Ohio State forward John Havlicek dies at 79

Former Ohio State forward John Havlicek has died at the age of 79, according to a statement released by the Boston Celtics on Thursday. Havlicek was drafted as the No. 7 overall pick of the 1962 NBA Draft by the Celtics. He played from 1962 to 1978 and was an eight-time NBA champion and was a 13-time NBA All Star. His No. 17 was retired by the Boston Celtics.Havlicek was elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1984.In his three years at Ohio State, from 1959-1962, Havliceck averaged 14.6 points per game, shooting 50.8 percent from the field. He won a national title with the Buckeyes during the 1960-61 season, making the final four in each of his three seasons. Havlicek’s No. 5 jersey is retired by Ohio State. read more

Jolly man climbs onto roof of Stratford Station and dances for a

first_imgA man climbed onto the roof of a busy commuter station during rush hour, where he reportedly danced, smoked and drank alcohol before a huge crowd.At least 100 people watched as the man stood on top of the entrance to Stratford tube station in east London for over an hour, causing disruption to people going in and out of the concourse. BBC producer Elise Wicker was returning home from work when she saw people staring at and taking pictures of the man, who was dressed in a grey hoodie. “You could see that one side of the entrance into the tube had been locked off so you could only exit from one side,” she told The Telegraph.  Firemen had to coax the man downCredit:Elise Wicker  A man is protesting on the roof of Stratford station. I’m having a burger king meal pic.twitter.com/BW0Wu8Oy5E— Danyool (@danyoolripley) September 22, 2016 Fireman at Stratford Station Looool Stratford rn pic.twitter.com/2XuPeo9P7R— Sartorialist (@HamadIsaac) September 22, 2016 Man on Stratford Station She said the man on the roof, who looked to be in his 20s, was drinking alcohol.”People were saying that they saw him dancing up there.”He seemed fairly jolly, he wasn’t miserable-looking, but the fear was that he was pretty intoxicated and he could possibly fall off – although it was not that high up really.” The man looked comfortable from his position on the roofCredit:Twitter center_img BTP spokesman said: “At 1824 hours on Thursday the 22nd of September British Transport Police officers were called to Stratford Underground station to report that a male was on the station roof.”Officers from BTP along with colleagues from London Fire Brigade attended the incident, spoke to the male and assisted him coming down from the roof voluntarily. “The male was arrested for drunk and disorderly and trespass and was taken to one of our custody suites.” Ah Stratford never ceases to amaze me. pic.twitter.com/RHLrQixW3O— Scott Nicol (@scottnicol) September 22, 2016 Ms Wicker added: “Police came and said we have got to move because you’re getting in the way of the one part of the exit that had been opened.”The crowd was pretty sizable, at least 100 people were having a look.”That’s the one part of Stratford that everyone comes through. All the people coming out of the station, all the people going to Westfield shopping centre, all the residents who live on the other side of the station, all go through there. It’s the busiest section of Stratford.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. British Transport Police (BTP) and fire services were called to the scene. Crews put a ladder up near the man and attempted to talk to him. He was eventually safely and voluntarily helped down from the roof. A spokesman for Transport for London said that the station had not been closed during the incident, although an area had been cordoned off around where the man was standing.  “I walked outside and I could see that there was a huge area that was cordoned off. There were probably 20 police for one bloke who was standing on a bit of the roof, the bit that sticks out that says ‘Stratford Station’.”The guy had been there for the last hour. He must have been there for ages. “A guy said he had seen the guy roll up a spliff – although I don’t know how you could see it was a spliff from that distance.” last_img read more

Businessman leading double life by spending half the week with mistress is

first_imgMrs Singh then stumbled and fell back and hit her head on a glass table as her husband tried to calm her down. Both police and paramedics were called to the detached property.Mrs Singh was treated for a cut to her head before spending two days in custody. On Monday, she appeared at Manchester Magistrates’ Court.Her husband, who was uninjured in the fracas, attended the hearing and said his wife’s drinking had been “having a negative impact on the family”.The court heard that the couple, who are both prominent members of the local Sikh community, had been married for 43 years and had two grown-up children and grandchildren. But a district judge was told that Mr Singh began an affair with another woman and 12 years ago fathered two children by her. Lynne Rogers, prosecuting, said: “Mr Singh was out when he received a phone call from his daughter saying that his wife was very drunk and he needed to come home now.”When he returned home, Mrs Singh was outside in the street and a taxi was pulled up on the drive. Mr Singh approached the defendant and tried to tell her not to go and that it would not be a good idea for her to drink any more alcohol.”She then stood in the middle of the road waving at cars and saying, ‘Help me, help me’, and the complainant thought she was trying to get him into trouble. Two cars drove past, one of which stopped and the female driver got out, asking Mr Singh if he was trying to hurt his wife.”He told the woman that his wife had had a lot to drink and that she should phone the police. He then escorted her back into their property and the defendant started shouting: ‘You b—-, you f—ing b—-, go back to your girl’.”She then grabbed onto his hair and proceeded to slap him round the face. The complainant felt he had no other option but to call the police himself. He tried to help her but she would not help herself.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Narinder Singh, pictured outside Manchester Magistrates’ Court, fathered two children with his mistress 12 years agoCredit:Pat Isaacs/Cavendish The couple's £1.4million detached home in Hale Barns, Cheshire Narinder Singhcenter_img A businessman’s wife has been arrested after she drunkenly assaulted her husband over an affair he had been having with another woman while living a double life, a court heard.Jaginder Singh, 62, berated her spouse, Narinder, who runs a property company, because he spent part of the week at their home and the rest with his mistress, with whom he fathered two children 12 years ago.During an argument last Friday night, Mrs Singh was seen waving down passing motorists in the road outside the property, shouting, “Help me, help me”, before turning on her husband, also 62, saying: “You b—-, you f—ing b—-, go back to your girl.”As Mr Singh tried to usher his inebriated wife inside their £1.4million home in Hale Barns, Cheshire, she grabbed his hair and slapped him in the face as their daughter confiscated a bottle of wine from her, a court heard. She started drinking when she discovered that her husband was having an affairLynne Rogers, prosecuting Ms Rogers added: “He wants the court to note her problems with alcohol, which is having a negative effect on the family. She says she cannot remember what happened that night. She started drinking when she discovered that her husband was having an affair.”They have been together for 43 years, but 12 years ago he fathered two other children with this woman. Mr Singh now spends two nights a week with this woman and their two children and the rest of the time at home with his wife and their two grown-up children and grandchildren.”The defendant has no previous criminal convictions. This has been the first time the defendant has been before the court.”Mrs Singh admitted assault by beating and was conditionally discharged for 12 months and ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £20. The court heard that she had accepted a police caution in 2004 for common assault.Carl Miles, defending, said: “If the defendant doesn’t get help quickly I am sure you will see her before the courts again very soon.”Passing sentence, Judge Belinda Krieke told Mrs Singh. “We understand that you have spent two nights in custody. We do require you to get help immediately and to help yourself and your family.”Mr and Mrs Singh left court together without comment. Later at his his home, Mr Singh said: “We don’t want to talk about this. My wife’s life has already been ruined enough.” The couple’s £1.4million detached home in Hale Barns, CheshireCredit:Pat Isaacs/Cavendishlast_img read more

Rachel Whiteread YBAs made art look too easy

first_imgIn their heyday, they transformed the British art scene, scandalising the baffled establishment and spinning their much-hyped ideas into a multi-million-pound industry.But the legacy of the Young British Artists has been tainted by their impact on a new generation, it appears, as one of their stars says they made it seem too easy to become rich and famous.Rachel Whiteread, the first woman to win the Turner Prize, said young artists now want only to be famous, expecting a well-remunerated career in a world of “immediate” art. Asked about her 1990s peers by the newspaper, she said: “Art was never seen as a career when I was studying. “Damien [Hirst] had a lot to do with changing the way people thought about it, with his ability to spin anything.“People like Grayson Perry, who I shared a studio with back when he was still struggling, great show-offs who want to be in the media all the time… Tracey Emin’s ‘My Bed’ (1998) Tracey Emin's 'My Bed' (1998) “You couldn’t ‘yes or no’ something on Instagram. You had to travel to see it, which makes for a more thoughtful response.”When asked whether there are any great artists emerging today, she told the newspaper: “I don’t know. I rarely go round the galleries these days, partly because I’m sick of it. I just like my own stuff!”In 1993, Whiteread became the first woman to win the Turner Prize, and sparked national cause celebre with House, a life-sized cast of an end-of-terrace property in the East End of London earmarked for demolition. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. “It’s not for me. Damien is a bit quieter now, but you see the residue of him.“Tracey [Emin] too, these are people who have done a lot to be out in the world spinning a tale, making art an attractive proposition.”People do what they need to do. I always think of Tracey as the girl in the playground shouting ‘Me me me!’“I’m very fond of her, but she plays on that and it seems to work. People love her for it.”Whiteread’s art work, Place (Village) (2006-2008), a series of around 150 vintage dollhouses built as a community, went on permanent display at the V&A Museum of Childhood this weekend. Whiteread, who is currently displaying her work at the V&A’s Museum of Childhood, said the “show-offs” of the YBAs, as they have become known, “made it look too easy”.”Artists now live a very different life to the ones we lived,” she told the Observer. “We had no expectations, we played hard and worked hard.“Now they expect a career, they expect fame. “I stopped teaching because of that. It seemed students were only interested in being famous.”She added: “We made it look too easy.”Art was slower then, and better because of it. It wasn’t immediate. Rachel Whiteread’s Embankment, made of plastic boxes, at Tate Modern Damien Hurst with his work 'I Am Become Death, Shatterer of Worlds 2006' Along with the likes of Tracey Emin, Damien Hirst,  Sam Taylor-Wood, Gillian Wearing, Jake and Dinos Chapman, Sarah Lucas, Angus Fairhurst and Michael Landy, she was one of the YBAs to define her generation of artists, exhibiting at the Royal Academy’s notorious Sensation exhibition in 1997. Damien Hirst with Mother and Child Divided in 2007  Rachel Whiteread's Embankment, made of plastic boxes, at Tate Modern Damien Hirst with Mother and Child Divided in 2007  Damien Hurst with his work ‘I Am Become Death, Shatterer of Worlds 2006’last_img read more

University vice chancellor criticised after accepting £70000 pay rise

first_imgThe Duchess Of Cornwall with University of Southampton’s Vice Chancellor Professor Sir Christopher Snowden Credit: Chris Jackson Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. A university vice chancellor has accepted a £70,000 pay rise during a redundancy process in which 75 academics were fired.Sir Christopher Snowden, of the University of Southampton, was accused of insulting staff and being out of touch after it emerged he had received £423,000 for the last academic year.The university has been rated a third class bronze in the government’s new teaching league tables.Sir Christopher received £352,000 between joining the university in October 2015 and July last year compared with his predecessor’s salary of £227,000 five years ago.He was singled out by Jo Johnson, the universities minister, as an example of pay excess as he called on universities to set an example by showing “pay restraint”.The University and College Union (UCU) called for changes to the way senior pay was decided. Sally Hunt, the UCU general secretary, said: “Professor Snowden was already one of the best-paid vice-chancellors in the UK, on a salary that had been publicly questioned by the universities minister.“To accept this kind of pay rise while saying he must axe 75 academic jobs because money is tight beggars belief.”It emerged this week that Dame Glynis Breakwell, of Bath University, the highest paid vice-chancellor whose salary package was £468,000, will leave her post at the end of the summer term next year.center_img Despite an ongoing row over her pay, she accepted another above-inflation pay rise this year of £17,500.Ms Hunt added: “It is almost as if vice-chancellors are engaged in some offensive game to see who can shock the most.”Southampton University said Sir Christopher had been awarded a salary increment of 1.1 per cent in line with the higher education national pay award and had declined a similar increment for 2017-18.Dr Gill Rider, chair of the University Council, said he was recruited because of his “breadth and depth of experience” and described him as an outstanding leader and one of the most experienced in the sector.“World-class capable leaders are needed to ensure that the UK’s universities become one of the stars in the UK’s post-Brexit export strategy,” he said. The Duchess Of Cornwall with University of Southampton's Vice Chancellor Professor Sir Christopher Snowden last_img read more

Parents face arrest if their kids are caught sexting warn police

first_imgParents who sign for mobile phone contracts on behalf of their children are liable for any ‘sexting’ images shared by teenagers, police said today. The warning, intended to alert mothers and fathers to the growing problem of teenagers who share ‘nude selfies’, risked deterring vulnerable children from contacting parents and authorities, said one of Britain’s leading child safeguarding experts. … A senior detective said police could then raid family homes, seize computers and phones and arrest ‘innocent’ parents as part of their criminal inquiries.center_img Police have warned parents they could be arrested and have their homes raided if their children send sexually explicit images on mobile phones they pay for.last_img read more

First the heatwave now a storm weather warning

“The greatest chance of impacts is in the afternoon, with the risk decreasing again on Sunday evening.”The Met Office said recently it would be bringing in two new types of weather warnings – one for thunderstorms, and the other for lightning. The Met Office has issued its first ever thunderstorm warning with torrential rain, hail and lightning predicted across parts of the south.The yellow ‘be aware’ warning is for South West England and South Wales and will be in effect from 6am-10pm on Sunday.It comes as the UK continues to be in the grip of a heatwave that is expected to last for several more days.The Met Office said the heavy rain could lead to flooded homes and businesses and difficult driving conditions.Forecasters said: “Some 30mm-40mm of rain in an hour is possible. Where surface water flooding or lightning impacts do occur they are likely to be in only a few places rather than across the whole warning area. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. People cool down in Warleigh Weir when the heatwave continues into the weekendCredit:SWNS.com This is the first time the thunderstorm alert has been officially put out.Meanwhile, despite the weather warning, millions of customers are being asked to conserve water supplies by not using hosepipes or water sprinklers. People cool down in Warleigh Weir when the heatwave continues into the weekend read more

Royal Navy sailors arrested after drunken fights on Florida shore leave during

Crew onboard HMS Queen Elizabeth as she leaves Portsmouth Credit:Steve Parsons/PA Wire Six Royal Navy sailors were arrested for drunk and disorderly behaviour just hours after  HMS Queen Elizabeth docked in Florida following its first transatlantic voyage.Three were also charged with resisting arrest and two were Tasered by local police officers amid claims that sailors were seen urinating from a pub balcony into the street, fighting each other and causing friction by not tipping enough.The £3 billion, 65,000 tonne aircraft carrier, nicknamed Big Lizzie, docked at Mayport naval base on Wednesday and hundreds of its crew spilled out into local pubs and bars.Keith Doherty, the owner and manager of Lynch’s Irish Pub in Jacksonville, said: “I think we need a modern day Paul Revere to let us know that the British are coming.”Sgt. Larry Smith of the Jacksonville Beach Police Department said most of the British sailors were taken into custody on drunk and disorderly charges and three of them were also charged with resisting arrest.Of the three who were resisting, he said one was pushing and pulling away from an officer, another wouldn’t put his hands behind his back and the other was just being disrespectful. Another would not stop fighting when asked and so was also Tasered, reportedly by a female police officer.Sgt Smith told the Florida Times-Union that the problem was not that sailors were getting into drunken fights with locals but fighting each other.“These guys come in town periodically,” he told the newspaper.“They beat the mess out of each other and fight each other more than anything, but once they pick up their teeth off the ground they are best friends.”He said one of the six arrests was at Lynch’s, when a sailor was asked to leave the bar but returned and was arrested on a trespassing charge.Sgt Smith added: “It was a case of good people making bad decisions, they got drunk and they fought among themselves.”It happens. They seem to beat the mess out of each other and knock their teeth out, but once they pick up their teeth off the ground they hug and then are best friends again.” The sailor who refused to put his hands behind his back had to be stunned with a Taser before he was arrested, he said. Crew onboard HMS Queen Elizabeth as she leaves Portsmouth  HMS Queen Elizabeth leaves Portsmouth Harbour  HMS Queen Elizabeth leaves Portsmouth Harbour Credit:Christopher Pledger Mr Doherty told the Telegraph the sailors had visited his bar each night of shore leave last week but insisted that although they “would get a bit boisterous” it was “nothing out of hand.””We had them here every night and there was only one incident when we refused to let someone who was too drunk in and he ended up trying to climb over a wall and banged his head,” he said.”We had a rock band on playing American and British music. They enjoyed themselves, they were jumping around.”The six sailors were detained overnight and appeared in a Florida court on Thursday morning before being released. It is unclear whether they face any further criminal action in the US but they may face sanctions under UK military law.A Royal Navy spokeswoman said: “We can confirm that a number of naval personnel are assisting US police with their enquiries – it would be inappropriate to comment further at this time.”The Naval Service places great importance on maintaining the highest possible standards of behaviour from its personnel at all times.”HMS Queen Elizabeth left Portsmouth Naval Base on August 18 and will undergo trials with F-35B fighter jets ahead of its first operational deployment in 2021. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Some bar managers suggested that there were problems with the sailors not tipping well, although they admitted they understood the custom was different in the US.Haleigh Snow, a manager at Poe’s Tavern in Atlantic Beach, said: “They tipped a little under 10 percent, and I don’t think they knew they were doing anything wrong. Other than that, we haven’t had any trouble.” read more

Mushrooms could solve the war on plastic says Kew Gardens

 fungus from the family Psathyrellaceae decomposing bark chippings near the bridge across the lake at Kew.  Fungi could be the key to winning the war on plastic, leading scientists at Kew Gardens has said.The first ever report on the state of the world’s fungi has today revealed that if the natural properties of fungus can be harnessed and developed, plastic could be broken down naturally in weeks rather than years.Kew Gardens and a team of over 100 scientists from 18 countries have compiled the paper, which shows how different organisms can decompose plastics, clean up radioactive material and even speed up the production of biodiesel.Found last year by a team of Chinese scientists on a rubbish dump in Pakistan, Aspergillus tubingensis breaks down bonds between plastic molecules and then splits them using its mycelia. The process takes a matter of weeks, rather than the decades it usually requires for plastic to naturally disintegrate.“This ability has the potential to be developed into one of the tools desperately needed to address the growing environmental problem of plastic waste,” says the report. Herinaceus, known as bearded tooth fungus is protected against picking in Britain and is a conservation priority speciesCredit:M. Ainsworth/Royal Botanic Gardens In an effort to find out which ‘lost’ species are truly extinct and which species are simply under-recorded due to lack of survey work, Kew runs a ‘lost and found fungi’ citizen science project.The British public have been urged to help identify and record species to add to the 1,200 already recorded for conservation assessments.It is believed that 93 per cent of fungi are currently unknown to science, and the best estimate puts the number of species at 3 million – six times as many as there are plants.“We have to change our way of thinking about fungi,” said Ester Gaya, senior mycologist at Kew. “We would be covered in litter and dead matter if it weren’t for fungi, but there is still so much more to know about it.“We want to know what ecosystems there are, what is under threat and what we actually know about them,” said Gaya, speaking inside Kew’s fungarium – the largest in the world and home to more than 1.25m dried fungal specimens. Around 2,000 new species of fungi are discovered worldwide each year and highlights from 2017 included finding fungi in dust, on an oil painting, and one new species lurking under a fingernail. Herinaceus, known as bearded tooth fungus is protected against picking in Britain and is a conservation priority species Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. A report from the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, estimates there are about three million species of fungiCredit:Jeff Eden/Royal Botanic Gardens Speaking yesterday at Kew Gardens, senior scientist Dr Ilia Leitch said: “This is incredibly exciting because it is such a big environmental challenge. If this can be the solution, that would be great. “We are in the early days of research but I would hope to see the benefits of fungi that can eat plastic in five to ten years.”A recent Telegraph investigation showed that British plastic sent to Poland to be recycled was actually being burned, spewing dangerous toxic particles into the atmosphere.It is hoped that fungi could revolutionise the recycling process and provide a sustainable decomposition method for plastics.The report also seeks to enhance the image of fungi, citing its importance in beer (yeast), penicillin, washing powder and cheese.The most famous type of fungi – mushrooms – are consumed the world over, with the market for edible species worth £32.5 billion. read more

Tonga cleared rainforest of mosquitoes ahead of Duchess of Sussexs visit to

When the Duchess of Sussex announced she was travelling to Tonga while pregnant, eyebrows were raised about the dangers of the Zika virus.The world need not have worried, it appears, after it emerged the Tongan authorities sprayed the rainforest she was visiting to clear it of mosquitoes ahead of the royal visit.The principal of Tupou College, where the Duke and Duchess on Friday unveiled two new dedicated areas of preserved rainforest, said the health authorities had sprayed an unspecified chemical in the area twice in the two days preceding the arrival of the royal couple.As they visited the school and its talented choir, the Duke and Duchess were treated to a performance of a song about mosquitoes, complete with actions and buzzing sound effects from pupils.–– ADVERTISEMENT ––The tune left the Duchess, who is around four months pregnant and has taken medical advice about the Zika virus ahead of her trip, in irrepressible giggles.   The country has a “moderate” risk of zika, which is transmitted by mosquitoes and can cause birth defects.The Duchess has spent four days in Fiji and Tonga, wearing long sleeves and mid or floor-length skirts, and undertaking events largely inside or in urban areas while the Duke heads to the forests. At the college, the Duke walked through a section if the Tuloa forest without her.Alifeleti Atiola, principal of Tupou College, said as he introduced the song that it was about mosquitoes welcoming them to the forest.He added that remarks were aimed at reassuring the Duchess about the Zika threat, telling her: “They are quite harmless.””I knew there was a concern,” he said. “I just wanted to make sure that she knew that it is safe here.” On Friday afternoon, the couple flew from Tonga to Sydney where they will they will visit Invictus Games competitors and speak at the closing ceremony, before flying to their final leg of the long trip in New Zealand.Sign up for Your Royal Appointment – for everything you need to know about the Royal Family, direct to your inbox each week. The Duke and Duchess were able to spend just one night in the Kingdom of Tonga during their 16- day Pacific tour, and were hosted for much of it by the country’s own royal family. On Friday morning, they spent time with Princess Angelika, King’s Tupou VI’s l daughter, who called them a “beacon of hope” for young people in the Commonwealth, and the “ultimate diplomacy”.At a marketplace, where they were adorned with flower garlands and elaborate Taovalas to tie around their waists.Given a piece of art bearing the royal motif of the island, Fata O Tu’i Tongan, to take back to Kensington Palace, the couple are understood to have declined other gifts for fear of strict Australian import laws about flora and fauna.Salome Tesi, who was stationed at the first stall the Duke and Duchess came to in the market, said the couple had been interested to see a display of tree-like black coral on the table but politely declined to take away a carved necklace in the shape of a turtle.”They asked about where it came from,” she said. “We offered them a necklace as a gift and they said they liked it.”They really liked it but they didn’t take it. I think they wanted to take a look around all of the market.” Pointing at the forest, he disclosed: “We got the health authorities to come and spray this two days in a row, yesterday and the day before.”During a ceremony which dedicated two areas of the forest to the Queens Commonwealth Canopy, pledging to protect them, the choir also sang the Welsh rugby anthem “Guide me o thou great redeemer”, with Prince Harry humming along and encouraging the crowd to join in.In a speech, the Duke thanked the people of Tonga for “leading by example” to protect the environment.”Planting trees and conserving forests helps us in so many ways,” he said.”It is a simple but effective way to restore and repair our environment, clean the air, protect habitat and enhance our health and wellbeing.” read more

Mega homes to be banned in central London as Westminster council sets

Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. The ban does not apply to family homes which have been converted into flats and are being restored to their original function as a single home.Westminster council hopes to bring down the median house price, currently £1.05m, as it argues is unaffordable for the majority of its residents.It said: “The average household income in Westminster is £52,199, yet the median house price was £1,054,400 in 2017.“That’s nearly two times higher than London as a whole, and almost five times higher than that of the UK.”Earlier this year, the council banned a 1,590 square metre, £40m, mega-home from being created in a Grade I listed terrace overlooking Regent’s Park as part of its plans to tackle the housing crisis.Mr Beddoe said at the time: “Our city’s golden postcodes must not be used for Monopoly board-style investments to cater only for oligarchs and the most wealthy.” Super-sized “mega homes” are to be banned in central London as Westminster City Council draws up new plans to ensure “real people” can buy properties.The council, which oversees some of London’s most expensive postcodes including  Mayfair, Knightsbridge and Belgravia, said it will restrict new builds over 150 square meters  (1,615 sq ft), in order to preserve homes for “real people” instead of oligarchs and members of the global elite.Westminster council argued that 150 square meters is “generous”, as it is 50 per cent larger than the average family home in the area.The new rules, outlined in the council’s  2019-40 development plan,  include a commitment to build over 10,000 affordable homes in the borough by 2040.–– ADVERTISEMENT ––In the report, the council says the limit is: “12 sq m above the highest minimum standard in the NDSS and is 50% higher than the average size of a private market tenure home in Westminster (100 sq m). It will still enable generously sized homes to be developed to meet development from the prime market, but balances that against the other, more strategic housing need of the city.”Richard Beddoe, who oversees planning at the council, said: “We want Westminster to be home to thriving, mixed communities, not empty super prime properties. That’s why we will be restricting the size of new luxury apartments and introducing a new extra bedroom policy to make it easier for families to extend their homes so they have enough space to stay living in Westminster and are not forced to move out. “Building the right type of homes for people to live in is priority number one in our City Plan. There’s a national crisis and we have to play our part in fixing that, not just for the benefit of UK as a whole, but for the real people who have legitimate aspirations to build their lives and grow up with their families in our city.” read more