Beavers Clean the Soil

first_imgWithout beaver dams, loss of nutrients from soil would increase, and pollutants from upstream erosion would afflict waterways.Scientists at the University of Exeter looked into the beneficial functions that beaver dams perform for soil and rivers. Look how much one family of beavers can do:The research, led by hydrologist Professor Richard Brazier, found that the work of a single family of beavers had removed high levels of sediment, nitrogen and phosphorus from the water that flowed through their 2.5 hectare enclosure.The family of beavers, which have lived in fenced site at a secret location in West Devon since 2011, have built 13 dams, slowing the flow of water and creating a series of deep ponds along the course of what was once a small stream.One beaver dam can impound a lot of water, trapping sediments and reducing erosion. Photo by David Coppedge, Lundy Canyon.Soil from upstream managed lands had leached nitrogen and phosphorus into runoff. This runoff, 70% of which came from soil, became trapped in the beaver ponds. The scientists found that the beaver ponds trapped 100 tonnes of sediment in their ponds. Without them, the pollutants would cause harm to fish and humans, because high concentrations of nitrogen and phosphorus need to be removed in water treatment plants. Professor Richard Brazier saw the good news from beavers after the bad news from humans:Professor Brazier said: “It is of serious concern that we observe such high rates of soil loss from agricultural land, which are well in excess of soil formation rates. However, we are heartened to discover that beaver dams can go a long way to mitigate this soil loss and also trap pollutants which lead to the degradation of our water bodies. Were beaver dams to be commonplace in the landscape we would no doubt see these effects delivering multiple benefits across whole ecosystems, as they do elsewhere around the world.”Beaver pond with beaver house reached by underwater entrance. Photo by David Coppedge, McGee Canyon.Previously trapped for their fur, or killed as pests, the studies show that beaver play an important role in the world. Insects, fish, other mammals, birds and plants all benefit from the deep ponds impounded by these busy animals who make large dams and protected dens one branch at a time. They are best left alone to do what they instinctively know how to do.The old IMAX film “Beavers” is a gem that deserves to be watched by families. How such medium-size rodents do what they do is really quite astonishing. Their fur, their noses, their teeth, their webbed feet, their tails—everything about them is just right for their job. Bringing Darwin into this story would be like blasting a vuvuzela during a Bach symphony. (Visited 350 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

South African rugby in 2003

first_imgMuch like 2002, 2003 will go down in the history books as a poor year for South African rugby. The Springboks failed to fire during the course of the season, and only in a 60-10 victory over Samoa during the World Cup did they look like a world-class outfit.SA rugby was hit by accusations of racism after an incident involving Quinton Davids and Geo Cronje at a World Cup camp. After that neither player was selected to go Down Under for rugby biggest tournament.Revelations about a military-style camp, named ‘Kamp Staaldraad’, which took place just before the World Cup, shocked both the South African public and the rugby world.Coach Rudolf Straeuli, who had always maintained he should be judged on the Springboks’ performance at the World Cup, came under heavy fire, especially when sensational photos of naked players carrying out tasks came to light.Straeuli subsequently resigned and on the same day SA Rugby boss Rian Oberholzer stepped down. South African Rugby Football Union (Sarfu) president Silas Nkanunu followed soon afterwards, also resigning. Brian van Rooyen then took over as Sarfu president in a major shake-up for the embattled sport.Player of the year: Juan SmithThe one area of South African rugby that did stand out in an otherwise poor year was in the loose forward department. And Juan Smith stepped up and made his mark in the Springbok number-eight jumper.A tall man, he showed excellent speed off the mark, a motor that ran at 100 percent throughout every contest, and the heart of a lion. Together with Joe van Niekerk and Corne Krige, Smith formed a formidable loose trio, capable of upstaging many a back row combination in world rugby today.Providing Van Niekerk avoids the injuries that have plagued hm, he and Smith should be two of South Africa’s stars for many years to come.Special mention: Ashwin WillemseAshwin Willemse made his mark in 2003. A member of the South African under-21 World Cup winning team of 2002, he first made the step up to Super 12 level during the 2003 season, and then to international level where he proved to be one of the Springboks’ more consistent and exciting players.In some of the Boks’ poorer performances he stood out like a lighthouse in the mist. Willemse was well rewarded for his excellent performances when he became the first player in history to scoop the top three awards at the SA Rugby Player of the Year awards. Willemse won the Player of the Year, Promising Player of the Year, and Players’ Player of the Year awards. Maybe the reason I didn’t pick him ahead of Smith is because in some of the Boks’ poorer showings Willemse was effectively shut out of the action.Most overlooked player: Brent RussellBrent Russell is the kind of player that can turn a match on its head in the blink of an eye. He has an unbelievable ability to spot the gap and incredibly fast feet that enable him to create spaces where none should exist. He is, in a word, a game-breaker.Russell was the catalyst in South Africa’s 26-22 win over Australia in July, and was rightly showered with praise. However, next time out against New Zealand, he had a below-par outing and was dropped. He never got the chance to play for the Boks again.Although he was injured at a stage before the World Cup squad was chosen, Russell could still have played Down Under – especially when the Boks were crying out for a playmaker, someone who could make a difference.It seems the constant obsession with size is the problem that Russell faces. But surely his fantastic skills outweigh any considerations that he is too small to make it at the top level?Best Test performance: SA vs Samoa (Brisbane)South Africa’s most complete performance of the year came in the World Cup against Samoa in a must-win match. The Samoans had pushed eventual winners England all the way in their previous match and, based on that performance, it was thought that they could upset the Springboks.But the Boks never allowed the Samoans into the showdown and ran out comfortable 60-10 winners. South Africa dominated all facets of play from the very first whistle and with the scrum calling the tune up front the backs were able to flourish. By the end of the game the Boks had outscored the Samoans eight tries to one and were full value for their win.Worst Test performance: SA vs New Zealand (Pretoria)South Africa’s worst performance of the year came at Loftus Versfeld where they lost 52-16 to New Zealand. Springbok hopes were high after their win over Australia the week before, but the All Blacks tore the Boks apart with fine running rugby.If Carlos Spencer had had his kicking boots on the New Zealand score would have been closer to 70 points. In the end they ran in seven tries to one and it was the most emphatic victory the All Blacks have ever scored over South Africa.Newcomer of the year: Kabamba FloorsSouth Western Districts Eagles flanker Kabamba Floors quickly made a name for himself in 2003 with his wholehearted game. He demonstrated a real nose for the ball and exceptional pace for a loose forward.Considered to be undersized, Floors didn’t let that get him down at all. He caught the eye of Springbok Sevens coach Chester Williams and when he was given the opportunity in the IRB Sevens Series on his home ground in George he delivered a dynamic performance, winning the player of the tournament award. With his dyed-blond hair he’s hard to miss, and his performances are just as eye-catching.Coach of the year: Heyneke MeyerBlue Bulls coach Heyneke Meyer, as he was in 2002, is my pick as coach of the year.Under Meyer the Blue Bulls continued to build on their Currie Cup victory of last year and they became stronger and stronger as the season progressed.The Blue Bulls were forced to take on the experienced Natal Sharks in the Currie Cup final without a single member of their first-choice tight five – all on World Cup duty – but that didn’t hold them back. They overpowered the Sharks in a one-sided match, winning 40-19.Rugby fans had begun to forget the Blue Bull dynasty that once ruled South African rugby, but with Meyer at the helm in Pretoria those memories have become nightmares to the supporters of other teams – and happy recollections of days gone by for Blue Bulls fans.Provincial upset of the year: Blue Bulls vs Griquas (Pretoria)The upset of the year took place at Loftus Versfeld where struggling Griquas managed to upset the Blue Bulls.The men from Kimberley kept the defending Currie Cup champions on the back foot throughout the match, dominating the much-vaunted Blue Bulls pack on their way to a 19-15 win. in which Griquas outscored the home team three tries to two.Heading into the game, Griquas were winless in four outings and had not challenged for victory in any game.Special mention: Western Province vs Blue Bulls (Cape Town)The Blue Bulls opened their Currie Cup season with a 64-29 thrashing of Western Province.The second time the teams met Heyneke Meyer’s charges had lost only one game, away to the Sharks, and had five wins under their belt. Province, who had been struggling throughout the season however, tore the Bulls to shreds with a display of great running rugby in the finest traditions of the men in blue and white stripes.Province were too fast and too slick for the Blue Bulls and there could not have been a more complete turnaround from the opening match of the season. Province led 42-7 at the break and went on to a comfortable 63-26 victory that included nine tries.Provincial game of the Year: Cheetahs vs Sharks (Bloemfontein)Heading into their final round-robin match, the Natal Sharks needed to beat Free State in Bloemfontein – never an easy task – and also score at least four tries to pick up a bonus point and advance to the Currie Cup final.The Sharks built up a 15-10 lead at halftime, but the Cheetahs fought back strongly in the second half to take the lead. Meanwhile, Sharks flyhalf Butch James squandered three kicks at goal.James’s opposite number Kennedy Tsimba had put his team ahead with two fantastic tries as the Free Staters first led 22-15 and then 25-20 with only 11 minutes to play.Charl van Rensburg the pulled the Sharks level with his second try of match that also earned the visitors a bonus point, but at 25-all it wouldn’t be enough to take them into the final.In the final movement of the game the Natalians surged deep into Free State territory and when the Cheetahs were trapped offside, James was given an opportunity to make amends for his earlier misses. He slotted the penalty to give the Sharks a 28-25 win and a spot in the final.Feel-good moment of the year: SA under-19 win World CupFollowing in the footsteps of the under-21 World Cup winners of 2002, the South African under-19 team captured the World Cup in their age group with a spirited and deserved 22-18 victory over arch-rivals New Zealand.Ably led by scrumhalf Paul Delport, the young South Africans fought fire with fire but found themselves 15-10 down at the break. However, South Africa kept the pressure up and the Kiwis started to wilt under the never-say-die commitment of the green and gold.A penalty by the outstanding Earl Rose pulled South Africa to within two points of the defending champions and another successful kick put SA in the lead 16-15. New Zealand hit back immediately, though, and went 18-16 in front with another penalty.But South Africa took they game to the Kiwis and earned another penalty that Rose slotted to put his team back in front. He missed a tough kick at goal shortly afterwards, but flyhalf Isma-Eel Dollie sealed a great win with a well-taken dropped goal as South Africa became World Cup winners with a 22-18 victory.Top domestic points scorers in 2003Kennedy Tsimba (Cheetahs) 230Chris Rossouw (Western Province) 199Casper Steyn (Pumas) 193Butch James (Sharks) 174Nel Fourie (Lions) 139Louis Strydom (Blue Bulls) 133Derick Hougaard (Blue Bulls) 83John Daniels (Lions) 65 Want to use this article in your publication or on your website?See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

South African entrepreneurs: tips to grow your business

first_imgShoprite’s mobile soup kitchens help feed vulnerable South Africans across the country every day. (Image: Shoprite)A South African supermarket group is helping feed thousands of hungry people every day by donating unsold food to relief organisations.The Shoprite Group – which runs Shoprite and Checkers stores across the country – has a no-waste policy. Instead, surplus food is donated to Foodbank South Africa, which in turn distributes the food to hundreds of non-profit organisations, collectively feeding thousands of hungry people every day.In 2015 alone, the supermarkets donated close to R100-million worth of surplus food to organisations in need.Shoprite also directly services vulnerable communities across South Africa every day with its fleet of 19 mobile soup kitchens. Since they took to the road in February 2007, the kitchens have served over 27-million meals.Acting for changeThis winter, the supermarket group’s customers can also play their part to fight hunger by simply donating R5 or more to the #ActForChange Fund at any till-point in stores across the country. The funds go towards the work of FoodBank South Africa.“It costs FoodBank South Africa R1.08 to provide enough food for one meal, so a donation of R5 will allow us to provide nearly five meals,” said Kate Hamilton, fund development manager at Foodbank South Africa.“Considering that more than 13.8-million South Africans go hungry every day, we have a collective responsibility to work towards ending hunger in our country – and every little donation helps.”The #ActForChange Fund was launched in March this year after customers asked to be part of efforts making a difference in communities affected by the ongoing drought gripping the country.Customers have since donated well over R200 000 to the fund, which hopes to raise even more through winter.On Mandela Day this year, FoodBank South Africa will be holding a meal and hamper packing day in Cape Town, Durban and Johannesburg. The events will happen in 67-minute slots from 9 am to 3 pm on 18 July 2016.Check out Foodbank South Africa’s website on www.foodbanksa.org on how your donation will be used to make a difference.last_img read more

[WATCH] Nike celebrates SA’s golden girl, Caster Semenya in cutting-edge ad

first_img“Too fast? Too bad. I was born to do this.” This is the message gold medallist Caster Semenya conveys in her latest ad.This year has been nothing short of amazing for the South African 800m runner, who has just wrapped up another phenomenal season. She reached an 800m personal best of 1:54.25 in the Paris Diamond League that took place in June this year, followed by another seven Diamond League wins, and her most recent wins at the IAAF Continental Cup, claiming the 800m title and the silver medal in the 400m, where she set a new South African record of 49.62.On Monday, Semenya trended on social media yet again, this time after posting a powerful Nike commercial she features in. In the ad, she utters the words: “Would it be simpler if I stopped winning? Would you be more comfortable if I was less proud?”The ad responds to on-going criticism directed to Semenya around her hyperandrogenism and the recent IAAF ruling of the female category in track and field that states: “women racing distances between 400m and the mile must adhere to a new upper limit for testosterone of five nanomoles per litre.”Nike has, in celebration of the 30th birthday of their ‘Just Do It’ pay offline, released a series of ads starring powerful athletes from around the world. The first ad features former NFL player Colin Kaepernick. Other global sporting stars also included in the Kaepernick ad are Serena Williams and LeBron James.As the Nation Brand, we will continue to stand behind Caster. We applaud her for being an inspiration to the nation with every new stride and achievement.last_img read more

Examining factors behind long term corn and soybean prices

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest The recent decline in farm prices have underscored a question that has existed throughout the recent period of higher prices, has a new era of farm prices emerged? As is usual among economists, disagreement exists concerning a new era. This article joins the discussion by using market history to identify key factors that have helped shape current corn and soybean prices.A key question confronting the outlook for U.S. corn and soybean prices is what is their long term equilibrium? In considering this question, it is important to acknowledge that U.S. corn and soybeans exist in the broader world grain and oilseed markets. These broader markets must be understood.A review of world grain and oilseed supply and demand over the last 40 plus years suggests a key factor determining future corn and soybean prices will be which increases faster: world grain yield or world grain consumption? The answer will determine if more land is needed for grain production or if land in grains can be shifted to meet the growing demand for oilseeds.Here are some thoughts to consider.• While future growth of grains as a source of biofuels will be a key factor influencing world consumption of grains, a more important factor likely will be whether the increased growth in world consumption of grains for feed since 2010 can be sustained or whether it is a temporary increase that returned world feed consumption back to its pre-ethanol growth path.A decline in crop yields is a widely discussed concern. This review finds no clear evidence that the growth of aggregate world yields of grains and oilseeds is slowing. Evidence is found that suggests the annual variability of these yields, in particular grain yield, may be declining.Another key question is: what is the normal level of stocks? Ending stock-consumption ratios have increased for world oilseeds, likely stabilizing the annual growth in world oilseed consumption. Has this ratio now reached a normal level and no longer needs to build? For world grains, have changes in world transportation infrastructure, an apparent decline in world yield variability, and the recent growth of corn production in the Southern Hemisphere lowered the normal level of world grain stocks? Or is the market understating the risks of production and other supply chain factors? In short, is the normal world grain ending stock-consumption ratio closer to the 1981-2001 average or the 2002-2010 average? Your answer to this question and the question posed for oilseed stocks profoundly changes your interpretation of the current level of world grain and oilseed stocks.A factor that compounds understanding long term corn and soybean prices is the recent decline in input prices. Lower input prices, everything else the same, increases profitability and thus either increases supply or dampens the downward pressure on it. While exceptions are common, input prices in general follow crop prices during large crop price moves. Thus, it is important to ask how much can current input prices decline and how will crop prices react to their decline?Rent has increased during the current crop price pullback. Will rent eventually decline? It declined by double digits during the two other large crop price pullbacks since 1973?The lack of decline in rents raises the question of how widespread is the current stress in U.S. agriculture? Raising this question does not mean stress has not increased, particularly for individual farmers. But, for the sector as a whole is the current stress about adjustment to a more normal supply-demand situation from a very prosperous situation or is it a deeper stress? An early indicator will be how many acres of corn and soybeans, more broadly crops, do U.S. farmers plant this year? The higher the number of acres planted the lower the indication of aggregate stress.The strong evidence that input prices in general decline when farm output prices decline raises an important question with farm policy and management implications: How risky is farming?While a historical trend does not always continue into the future, it is important to consider it and to have a rationale for why it no longer applies. Otherwise, a reasonable guess is that the historical trend will reassert itself. It is thus useful to keep in mind that the 2001-2005 real price of corn and soybeans adjusted for inflation since 2005 implies a crop year price for corn and soybeans of $2.70 and $7.20, respectively. To be more specific, unless world grain consumption continues to grow faster than world grain yield or unless world consumption of oilseeds grows faster than its historical rate (such as via biofuels) it is reasonable to expect that over time real corn and soybeans prices will work their way toward these real price levels. Note, this is not a price forecast for the coming crop year. It is what history suggests the underlying price pressure over the longer run could be.In summary, the sharp decline in corn and soybean prices since 2012 may be coming to an end and higher prices may be ahead as the string of good world weather is replaced by more normal or stressful weather, or demand growth accelerates. However, history suggests it is also possible that further declines are ahead. This article has not attempted to answer which scenario is more likely. Instead, it has pointed out key relationships and questions that a historical review of world grain and oilseed markets suggests you should monitor as these dynamic markets answer which scenario emerges. However, because further declines are potentially possible, this review clearly implies that effective management requires attention to the possibility of this outcome and thus aggressive management of costs and input productivity is in order.last_img read more

Butler’s late points lift Timberwolves past Pelicans

first_imgTyphoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH LATEST STORIES DeMarcus Cousins had 35 points and nine rebounds, and the Pelicans tied it at 96 when Cousins bounced a pass to Anthony Davis cutting down the lane for a two-handed dunk.Davis had 24 points and 10 rebounds, and Holiday added 14 points for New Orleans, which has lost two straight.“We’re still a team figuring each other out and figuring out what’s best for us and what’s the best spots to put guys in,” Cousins said. “But I’m extremely confident in this team.”New Orleans trailed 92-80 before Cousins and Tony Allen each scored six points during a 14-4 run to tie it with 2:22 to go.That comeback bid was “definitely a sign that shows me this is a team that doesn’t stop fighting. That’s a plus for any team,” Cousins said. “We just need to fix a lot of minor things.”ADVERTISEMENT John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s wedding MOST READ Astros win 1st World Series crown, top Dodgers 5-1 in Game 7 Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles01:48NBA: Kawhi, George seek more for Clippers than beating Lakers02:02Chief Justice Peralta vows to lead by example, bares 10-point program01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games CPP denies ‘Ka Diego’ arrest caused ‘mass panic’ among S. Tagalog NPA Japan ex-PM Nakasone who boosted ties with US dies at 101 Taj Gibson had 11 points and 12 rebounds to help the Timberwolves outrebound the Pelicans 47-38. Gorgui Dieng and Nemanja Bjelica scored 12 points apiece as Minnesota shot 49.4 percent (41 of 83).TIP INSTimberwolves: Towns had to sit with three fouls with 8:49 left in the second quarter after he caught Cousins across the face with his left hand. He didn’t score his first points until his put-back dunk with less than five minutes left. The third-year pro out of Kentucky has never been shut out. … Jamal Crawford, who had 11 points, closed out the first quarter by banking in a 39-foot shot from the mid-court circle. … The Timberwolves led for most of the first half, shooting 60.5 percent (26 of 43) and going up by as many as 12 points when Butler’s dunk made it 60-48.Pelicans: Allen had a season-high 10 points in 19 minutes off the bench. … The Pelicans fell to 1-3 at home after the second loss of a three-game home stand. … Cousins, who entered the game with 36 turnovers, had six in the first half and finished with eight of New Orleans’ 19 total turnovers.OFF TARGETCousins tied a career high with five 3-pointers, but missed his last three. The rest of the Pelicans were 3 of 21 combined from deep.Of the Pelicans’ 31 3s, coach Alvin Gentry said, “28 of them were really good looks and shots that you have to knock down.”QUOTABLE“Thibs is never happy. Come on now. Don’t write that. That’s fake news,” Towns said when asked whether coach Tom Thibodeau would be happy after two straight close road wins improved his club to 5-3. But Thibodeau could be seen smiling as Towns chatted with him near the locker room exit shortly afterward. Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Butler can worry about that later. His go-ahead shot as he was fouled with 34 seconds left highlighted a 23-point performance and lifted the Minnesota Timberwolves to a 104-98 victory over New Orleans on Wednesday (Thursday Manila time).Andrew Wiggins scored 18 points and stole the ball from Jrue Holiday with 24 seconds left to help seal the victory for Minnesota, which lost a 12-point lead in the fourth quarter before winning its third straight. Perhaps the most hopeful sign for Minnesota, which is trying to make the playoffs for the first time since 2004, is that the Wolves won despite 22 turnovers and the fact that Karl-Anthony Towns, limited by foul trouble, scored only two points.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout“It’s a different feeling. We’ve got a different confidence level,” Towns said, his constant smile, up-beat tone and subtle dance steps while grabbing grub from a buffet table in the locker room indicating how pleased he is to be on a team that can win when he has a rough game.“I’ll tell you one thing. It’s damn good to leave with a W,” Towns said. “Statistics don’t matter. It’s about making sure the team’s successful.” Stronger peso trims PH debt value to P7.9 trillion Minnesota Timberwolves guard Jimmy Butler (23) is fouled by New Orleans Pelicans guard E’Twaun Moore (55). APNEW ORLEANS — Jimmy Butler insisted he wasn’t merely trying to earn foul shots when he faked Pelicans guard E’Twaun Moore into the air, 20 feet from the basket, with the score tied in the final minute.“I was trying to get a bucket,” Butler said, agreeing that it wasn’t an easy shot with the 6-foot-4 Moore coming down on him as he put up his jumper. “It’s crazy to me, though, because I make the hard ones, but I cannot make wide-open jump shots to save my life right now.”ADVERTISEMENT Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. QC cops nab robbery gang leader, cohort Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa Read Next View commentslast_img read more

Video: Oklahoma State Was Given A Phantom First Down Against Kansas State, Scored 4 Plays Later

first_imgOklahoma State coach on the sideline against Kansas State.oklahoma state phantom first downIt’s been a tough year for the the Big 12’s referees. It’s about to get worse.During Saturday’s contest between Oklahoma State and Kansas State, it appears that the Cowboys were given a phantom first down when they should have been four yards short of the line to gain. Facing a 3rd and 23 from Oklahoma State’s 42-yard line, Mason Rudolph connected with Marcell Ateman for a 19-yard gain. Fox Sports 1 showed a replay of the play, and when they panned back to the live action, OSU had somehow been given a first down.A user took video of the entire sequence. The play in question comes at around the 2:30 mark.Jake Trotter, who covers the Big 12 for ESPN, confirmed that the officials made a mistake. As he notes, Oklahoma State scored a touchdown just four plays later.Big 12 officials did in fact award Oklahoma St a phantom first down when it should’ve been fourth-and-four. OSU scored TD four plays later— Jake Trotter (@Jake_Trotter) October 4, 2015How does this happen? We’re not sure. But with the Cowboys eking out a two-point win over the Wildcats, there are going to be lots of questions here.last_img read more

Ezekiel Elliott Welcomes “Brother” Jaylon Smith To The Dallas Cowboys

first_imgEzekiel Elliott celebrating after an Ohio State touchdown.GLENDALE, AZ – JANUARY 01: Running back Ezekiel Elliott #15 of the Ohio State Buckeyes (left) celebrates his second quarter touchdown with running back Jalin Marshall #7 (right) during the BattleFrog Fiesta Bowl against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish at University of Phoenix Stadium on January 1, 2016 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images)The Dallas Cowboys just made the most beloved pick of the NFL Draft, taking injured Notre Dame linebacker Jaylon Smith with the No. 34 overall selection. Smith injured his knee in the Fiesta Bowl and likely won’t play at all during the 2016 season. One of the players he faced in that Fiesta Bowl, Ohio State running back Ezekiel Elliott, is now his teammate. Elliott welcomed Smith to the team on Twitter. Welcome to the family brother @thejaylonsmith— EzekielElliott (@EzekielElliott) April 29, 2016The Cowboys have drafted two of college football’s most-likable players in Elliott and Smith. The NFL Draft is being televised on ESPN and the NFL Network.last_img read more

A timeline of key events in the Ontario Tory leadership race

first_imgTORONTO – A timeline of the Ontario Progressive Conservative leadership race:Jan. 24: Patrick Brown, then the leader of the party, calls a last-minute press conference to deny a pending news report about sexual misconduct allegations. He decries them as “categorically untrue.” Minutes later, CTV News airs a story in which two unnamed women make allegations of sexual misconduct against Brown dating back to his time as a federal member of parliament. The allegations have not been independently verified by the Canadian Press.Jan. 25: Brown issues a statement in the early morning saying he will step down as party leader to focus on clearing his name.Jan. 26: The PC caucus names Tory legislator Vic Fedeli as interim leader. Fedeli vows to root out the “rot” from within the party. The caucus further recommends that Fedeli carry the party through to the province’s spring election, but the party executive announces a leadership contest will be held instead, with a winner to be announced March 10.Jan. 29: Former Toronto city councillor Doug Ford, brother of the notorious late mayor Rob Ford, becomes the first person to declare his candidacy for the party leadership. He says he plans to wrest control of the party from elites and give a voice to the grassroots members.Feb. 1: Former Ontario legislator Christine Elliott announces her bid to contend for the party leadership. Elliott came second to Brown during the last contest to select a new leader in 2015. Elliott is the widow of late federal finance minister Jim Flaherty.Feb. 5: Toronto lawyer Caroline Mulroney, daughter of former prime minister Brian Mulroney, ends days of speculation by announcing her candidacy for party leader.Feb. 8: Social conservative and parental rights activist Tanya Granic Allen announces plans to join the leadership race.Feb. 11: Brown publishes the first of several Facebook posts in which he vows to clear his name and questions the credibility of the women who brought allegations against him. He openly challenges the veracity of CTV’s reporting on its original story and points out discrepancies in the women’s accounts that he says prove their accusations are false.Feb. 15: The leadership candidates meet for the first of two televised debates. During the conversation all four voice opposition to the Liberals’ increase to the minimum wage and reject a proposed carbon tax that would have been the cornerstone of Brown’s election platform had he remained as party leader.Feb. 16: Brown joins the leadership race with less than an hour to go before a registration deadline. He says his name has been cleared and he wants to focus on getting Ontario back on track. Earlier that day, Fedeli announced Brown had been kicked out of Tory caucus.Feb. 21: Brown’s quest to regain the Tory leadership is given the green light after the party nomination committee gives him a stamp of approval for a run in the spring election. The committee also approves Brown’s competitors in the contest, save for Mulroney who had previously been vetted when she secured a riding nomination in late 2016.Feb. 26: Brown withdraws from the Tory leadership race, saying it has been difficult on his family, and his candidacy has distracted from the policy discussion needed for the party as it heads toward the spring election. His announcement comes hours after Ontario’s integrity commissioner says he has launched an investigation into a complaint filed by Tory legislator Randy Hillier into alleged misconduct by Brown.Feb. 28: The party extends the deadline for members to register to cast a vote amid rising complaints that the necessary documents were not reaching people on time. The original registration deadline, set for March 2, is pushed back to March 5. Later that night, the candidates meet in Ottawa for the second and final televised leadership debate of the contest.March 3: The party issues a further extension to the voter registration deadline, moving it to March 7, and also extends the deadline for casting an actual ballot to noon on March 9.March 6: Ford, who had been raising questions about abortion access in the province, clarifies his position by saying that while he himself is pro-life, he believes the abortion matter is resolved. He pledges, however, never to muzzle members of the caucus if elected and allow them to vote with their conscience.March 7: The party extends the voter registration deadline for a third time, setting it at 8 p.m. on March 8. Originally, voting was supposed to close on that day.March 8: Ongoing challenges with mailing registration papers to party members leads to significant backlash on several fronts. Ford, alleging that party insiders are only getting the registration materials out to select members, says the election process was “not transparent.” He, Mulroney and Granic Allen all call for the Leadership Election Organizing Committee to push back the date of the vote. Committee Chair Hartley Lefton defends the process, saying it was passed by senior leadership in accordance with the party constitution. Later that day, lawyer Jeffrey Radnoff, representing a disenfranchised party member, files an injunction application in Superior Court in a bid to extend the race.March 9: A Toronto judge hears arguments on the request to extend the voting period, but ultimately rejects the application, meaning the leadership race will go on as scheduled.March 10: After hours of delays, party officials announce they are reviewing the results of the election. Lefton tells a raucus crowd that the “allocation of a certain list of electors” needed to be resolved, as it could affect the final result.last_img read more

Trudeau grilled on NAFTA deadline downplays awkward moment with Trump

first_imgVANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – Uncertainty around the upcoming NAFTA deadline and an awkward moment with U.S. President Donald Trump took the spotlight, as Prime Minister Justin Trudeau wrapped up his visit to the United Nations.The U.S. has been talking about moving forward on a NAFTA deal with Mexico and leaving Canada out in the cold. But Trudeau insists an agreement is still possible.“We will keep working as long as it takes to get to the right deal for Canada,” said Trudeau.There are just days to go before the latest U.S.-imposed deadline.“We will keep working on a broad range of alternatives. A broad range of paths are ahead of us. We’re going to keep focusing on trying to get to the right deal for Canadians,” added Trudeau.He did not go into specifics, but did note he’s received assurances from the president that there will be no steel and auto tariffs if a NAFTA deal is struck.RELATED: Trudeau restarts UN charm offensive under shadow of Trump’s trade threatsMeanwhile, Trudeau is downplaying what some viewed as an awkward handshake with Trump.As Trudeau circled a table, chatting with other world leaders, he had to touch Trump’s shoulder to get his attention. Trump stayed seated, as they had a brief exchange and shook hands, but later stood up for interactions with th e leaders of Mexico and Egypt.“I don’t think there’s anything to read into it,” said Trudeau to reporters at the UN.“An interaction — like so many are in UN — quick but cordial.”Trudeau said it wasn’t the right time for a chat, since he caught the president while he was reading notes before a toast he was about to give.last_img read more