College Sports

A crash, a block and Marquez’s reign in Austin now in doubt

A crash, a block and Marquez’s reign in Austin now in doubt

Marc Marquez slings his way around Circuit of the Americas better than anybody. His latest journey, though, took a few twisted turns and did not end well. The 25-year-old Spaniard, who had won every pole position and every MotoGP race in Austin, made it 6-for-6 in Saturday’s qualifying for the Red Bull Grand Prix of the Americas, posting the fastest lap. Or so he thought. The “King of...
MotoGP notes: Team FMX adds different kind of thrills for fans

MotoGP notes: Team FMX adds different kind of thrills for fans

Travis Willis has dreams of getting a prosthetic leg so he can go back to riding dirt bikes. That kind of dedication to motorsports is something many of the adrenaline junkies in Austin this weekend can relate to. Willis is the owner of Team FMX, a traveling motocross stunt show. He brought his act to Circuit of the Americas, where it is performing for the fans attending the MotoGP Red Bull Grand...
MotoGP junkies provide beginners guide to enjoying race

MotoGP junkies provide beginners guide to enjoying race

Charmaine Bendzsa didn’t know much about MotoGP when she met her future husband, Kyle Bendzsa, but it didn’t take her long to get hooked. The couple from Fort Collins, Colo., are attending their fourth Austin Grand Prix this weekend, and Charmaine was decked out head to toe in Valentino Rossi gear. To her, the sport is like a reality show, and Movistar Yamaha rider Rossi might be...
Rain dampens spring scrimmage, but not Baylor’s confidence for fall

Rain dampens spring scrimmage, but not Baylor’s confidence for fall

Matt Rhule joked Saturday that he would’ve cheated to send his Baylor spring game into overtime. As it was, the Bears didn’t need any tricks from the head coach to push the 15th practice of spring a bit longer. Walk-on quarterback Preston Heard completed a 19-yard pass to R.J. Sneed as time expired in the fourth quarter to tie the game at 7-7. Then after two extended series in overtime...
Columbus Crew owners strike back at Ohio lawsuit aimed at keeping team

Columbus Crew owners strike back at Ohio lawsuit aimed at keeping team

The owners of the Major League Soccer franchise Columbus Crew SC struck back Thursday against an Ohio lawsuit aimed at keeping the team from possibly moving to Austin. Precourt Sports Ventures and MLS jointly filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit on the grounds that Ohio Revised Code 9.67 does not apply to the Crew and is unconstitutional. In the 25-page document, the defendants claimed at least five...
Updated MotoGP notebook: Riders still doing the bump at COTA

Updated MotoGP notebook: Riders still doing the bump at COTA

MotoGP’s bumpy ride isn’t over yet at Circuit of the Americas. Track management worked extensively on the surface in recent months after complaints from riders a year ago, even purchasing state-of-the-art grinding equipment from Europe. Several of the world’s top motorcyclists, practicing Friday for the Red Bull Grand Prix of the Americas, told Motorsport.com that the problems remain...
MotoGP arrives at COTA with its future in Austin yet to be settled

MotoGP arrives at COTA with its future in Austin yet to be settled

The Red Bull Grand Prix of the Americas is a much bigger deal around the world than in Austin, but race weekend always delivers a high-horsepower boost to the local economy. MotoGP claims to have a worldwide audience of 300 million households, although just a fraction of those reside in this country. This weekend, fans will be closely following these storylines at Circuit of the Americas: Marc Marquez...
For 1st time in nearly 40 years, an Englishman leads charge for MotoGP

For 1st time in nearly 40 years, an Englishman leads charge for MotoGP

It’s not exactly a British invasion of Circuit of the Americas. But as the world’s premier motorcycle series makes its annual Austin pilgrimage, an English rider leads the charge, a first for MotoGP since 1979. In a sport dominated by Spaniards and Italians, Cal Crutchlow, a 32-year-old from Coventry, cruises into this weekend’s Red Bull Grand Prix of the Americas atop the standings...
Lance Armstrong settles $100M lawsuit with US government

Lance Armstrong settles $100M lawsuit with US government

Lance Armstrong has reached a $5 million settlement with the federal government in a whistleblower lawsuit that could have sought $100 million in damages from the cyclist who was stripped of his record seven Tour de France victories after admitting he used performance-enhancing drugs throughout much of his career. The deal announced Thursday came as the two sides prepared for a trial that was scheduled...
COTA takes steps to smooth out MotoGP’s bumpy ride

COTA takes steps to smooth out MotoGP’s bumpy ride

When MotoGP bolted from Circuit of the Americas a year ago, the stars of the show fired a few parting shots tied to their bumpy rides, with Honda’s Dani Pedrosa even comparing one section to a “motocross” track. The combination of six sports car weekends, Formula One and an unusually rough Central Texas winter that included more than a half-dozen freezes has pulled and tugged at...

Central Texas hole-in-one listings

Jim Adams, 8-iron, 140-yard 12th hole at Morris Williams; witness: Bill Kirwin Brenda Beard, driver, 125-yard 16th hole at Lighthouse Country Club (Kingsland); witnesses: Don Beard, Todd Roberts, Jay Roberts Kelly Kidd, 4-hybrid, 174-yard 8th hole at Falfurrias; witnesses: Reggie Salyer, Randy Sharp Mike Kolar, 7-iron, 165-yard 16th hole at Delaware Springs; witnesses: Kye Kolar, Sam Morrison Mingo...
Golden’s nuggets: Goodbye, Godzillatron? Texas eyes stadium expansion

Golden’s nuggets: Goodbye, Godzillatron? Texas eyes stadium expansion

Even Godzillatron has a shelf life. The reality hit home last week with the revelation that Texas is planning to expand the south end zone of Royal-Memorial Stadium as part of a $140 million project that’s reportedly projected for completion by the summer of 2021. The massive scoreboard cost the university $8 million when it was constructed in 2006. There will be another Godzillatron but the...
Defense has the edge in Texas State spring scrimmage

Defense has the edge in Texas State spring scrimmage

The Texas State football team pitted its offense against its defense Saturday in the annual Maroon and Gold spring scrimmage. Unlike a usual spring game format in which the team is split into two sides and a normal four-quarter game is played, the offense and defense competed in situational drills. Through seven sessions, addressing a different situation in each one, the sides were awarded points...
Dramatic finish in Jimbo Fisher’s first spring game at Texas A&M

Dramatic finish in Jimbo Fisher’s first spring game at Texas A&M

Spring football games are supposed to be show-off scrimmages, not contests that come down to the final seconds to determine intrasquad bragging rights. Then again, Jimbo Fisher was supposed to bring a new attitude to Texas A&M, so why not a new tradition with Maroon and White games? On a chilly Saturday at Kyle Field, the White team, led by quarterback Kellen Mond, beat the Maroon 30-24. The game...
Golden: Jimbo Fisher’s Aggie wish list

Golden: Jimbo Fisher’s Aggie wish list

Get it done, Jimbo Fisher. By hook or by crook, get it done. The Texas A&M brass decided that the former Florida State head coach was worth $79 million more than that cyborg Lee Majors played on television back in the ’70s before he became the Fall Guy. No one can ever say the Aggies aren’t after championships, even though Nick Saban might coach until he’s 125. They opened the vault...
Busch brothers tap the brakes on their sibling rivalry

Busch brothers tap the brakes on their sibling rivalry

Kyle and Kurt Busch haven’t always seen eye to eye. But as the years have passed, NASCAR’s iciest sibling rivalry has thawed to the point where they can joke around a bit. Kurt Busch did just that Friday after Kyle Busch edged him out by two-thousandths of a second to take the pole for the Cup Series race Sunday at Bristol Motor Speedway. “I can walk up to him and say, ‘Yeah...
Jimbo Fisher will be front and center at Texas A&M spring scrimmage

Jimbo Fisher will be front and center at Texas A&M spring scrimmage

Spring football games always are mostly spectacle. The players will wear uniforms and run out of the tunnel, just like on a fall Saturday. There will be fan events inside and outside the stadium. But no self-respecting coach will ever tip his hand in the spring by having his team show off new plays and formations that they’ve worked on for the past six weeks. Instead, they’ll offer fans...

Central Texas hole-in-one listings

Billy Abel, driver, 180-yard 12th hole at Jimmy Clay; witnesses: Gary Briscoe, Mike Moore, Penny Louis, Harry Hendrickson Mike Canon, 7-iron, 188-yard 5th hole at Riverside; witness: Michael Travis Ava Frazier, pitching wedge, 68-yard 4th hole at Plum Creek; witnesses: Robert Frazier, Brooklyn Wendelken, Madison Wendelken, Brittany Wendelken Frank Haught, 8-iron, 122-yard 17th hole at Onion Creek...
Bohls: ‘The torch has been passed’ to this new generation of golfers

Bohls: ‘The torch has been passed’ to this new generation of golfers

OK, Rickie Fowler, you’ve got next. Jon Rahm, you’re way ahead of schedule, but no one can see your ceiling. Doug Ghim, anyone? Beau Hossler? They’re all lining up and no one had better get in their way. They found that out the hard way when hard-charging, hard-to-like Patrick Reed bolted to his first major golf championship on Sunday with swagger and a dagger of a putter. Once again...

Texas State Notebook: Softball team runs winning streak to seven games

Since a 3-0 loss to Texas on March 21, the Texas State softball team has won seven consecutive games, all at home. The Bobcats (29-8) also remained unbeaten in their 11 Sun Belt Conference contests after a three-game sweep of South Alabama (20-19, 5-9) this weekend. After a 6-2 victory against Lamar on Wednesday, the Bobcats played host to the Jaguars for a series that opened with a doubleheader on...
Former Austin High standout Baptista surprises Cap 10K women’s field

Former Austin High standout Baptista surprises Cap 10K women’s field

Seven years ago, a talented senior at Austin High School established herself as one of the top distance runners in Texas. A succession of injuries limited her performance in college, but on Sunday a healthy and rejuvenated Rachel Baptista emerged as the surprise women’s champion at the 41st Statesman Capitol 10,000. Baptista, 24, was running in her first 10K race Sunday, and her coach had to...
Champion Stilin zaps Cap 10K field, falls just short of sub-30 finish

Champion Stilin zaps Cap 10K field, falls just short of sub-30 finish

For the second year in a row, an import from North Carolina dominated the Statesman Capitol 10,000. On a cool Sunday morning, Joe Stilin, part of the ZAP Fitness-Reebook racing team out of Blowing Rock, N.C., topped a Cap 10K field of 23,275 entrants, the fourth-largest field in the race’s 41-year history. The 28-year-old Stilin, who set school records at the University of Texas in the mile...
Postcards from Augusta: Yes, sir, Verne’s still going strong

Postcards from Augusta: Yes, sir, Verne’s still going strong

The CBS party was a big hit Saturday night. For several reasons. First, they served fried green tomatoes, a real Southern delicacy. Then, strawberry shortcake parfaits. Finally, got to visit with my favorite guy, the legendary Verne Lundquist, whom I razzed for not wearing his Austin Maroons leather jacket. He said in his defense he plans to wear it at the 60th reunion of his Austin High graduating...
Bohls: Reed trying to run into Masters history

Bohls: Reed trying to run into Masters history

Running is distinctly prohibited on this golf course, but apparently running away from the field is not. No one’s come close to slowing down the cocksure Patrick Reed, a 27-year-old Texan who is threatening to wreak havoc on this vaunted piece of property with what will probably be a historic Sunday, perhaps no matter who wins. How good has Reed been? Just consider that the three players behind...

Postcard from Augusta: Rubbing famous elbows

A word or two about the nightlife here in Augusta. There’s plenty of it. One thing about the folks at the Masters. They know how to party. Went to my third party in three nights, joining the Irish at a lavish house in their annual bash about two miles from the house where I’m staying with four writers from PGATour.com, including Statesman alumnus Mike McAllister, and another former co-worker...
Austin runner Mendez-Cleaver measures up nicely to 10K distance

Austin runner Mendez-Cleaver measures up nicely to 10K distance

Runner Allison Mendez-Cleaver has fared well at many distances, from 5 kilometers to the marathon, but there’s something about the 10K that makes her feel right at home. She topped the women’s field at the 2015 Statesman Capitol 10,000, crossing in 35 minutes flat, and came back the next year to repeat as the women’s champ, posting a time of 36:02 in less than optimal weather conditions...
Postcard from Augusta: Sergio’s unusual strategy on 15th — rinse, repeat

Postcard from Augusta: Sergio’s unusual strategy on 15th — rinse, repeat

Leave it to Bubba Watson to provide some much-needed comic relief in light of Sergio Garcia’s record 13 score on the par-5 15th hole, where he dunked five balls in the water. While some of us mused that Garcia might have come close to running out of balls, Watson was asked how many golf balls he normally keeps in his bag in case of the kind of disaster Garcia encountered Thursday. “I bring...
Golden: The Ceddys — the best and worst of the NCAA basketball tourney

Golden: The Ceddys — the best and worst of the NCAA basketball tourney

All hail, Villanova, kings of the hardwood. And while we’re at it, have a gander at the latest batch of Ceddys, the best and worst of the 2018 NCAA Tournament. Best finish: Michigan’s Jordan Poole’s three-pointer to beat Houston. No one knew at the time that it would propel an already surging Michigan team to the championship game. He scored only 15 points in his next four games...

Central Texas hole-in-one listings

Joan Baker, 5-iron, 105-yard 16th hole at Legacy Hills; witnesses: Greg Zumwaldt, Ronnie White Stephen Bone, 7-iron, 141-yard 12th hole at Star Ranch; witness: Mark Friedman Manny Campos, 9-iron, 105-yard 5th hole at Jimmy Clay; witnesses: Robert Castillo, Hector Martinez, Stacy Lopez Michelle Charbeneau, 7-iron, 101-yard 10th hole at Cowan Creek; witnesses: Joyce Wert, Paula Cox, Baine Mason Paula...
Postcard from Augusta: Surviving the dreaded Golf Shop experience

Postcard from Augusta: Surviving the dreaded Golf Shop experience

OK, I’ve survived the Main Golf Shop experience. As one customer said in the line with a wait of about 30 minutes with twists and turns in a cordoned-off section: “This is like a Disneyland ride.” The new expanded store has probably doubled in size if not larger with 16 checkout lines, but they are all about 20-30 people deep. I did not buy one of the new Masters gnomes. I did spend...
Bohls: A resurgent Tiger Woods plays with Lefty, sets focus on Masters

Bohls: A resurgent Tiger Woods plays with Lefty, sets focus on Masters

Tiger Woods is back. Because he’s got a new back. And golf could certainly use its absentee superstar. Physical frailties and off-the-course chaos in his personal life aside, the most famous golfer of this generation and the world’s biggest sports celebrity outside of maybe LeBron James lately returned to the site where he electrified the nation with his four Masters titles and jaw-dropping...
Postcard from Augusta: The Masters is no joke when it comes to food

Postcard from Augusta: The Masters is no joke when it comes to food

The Masters is a terrible place to lose weight, even with those walks up and down the hilly course. The good folks at Augusta National really make it hard on you because they offer an endless supply of food, including doughnuts, sandwiches and candy like Peanut M&Ms and Snickers bars. Not good. They also have a full-scale restaurant/dining room on the premises of the two-story Press Building. The...
Texas State notebook: Softball enjoys a series sweep behind Randi Rupp

Texas State notebook: Softball enjoys a series sweep behind Randi Rupp

Texas State’s softball team, which hadn’t played in nine days because of a weather cancellation, wasted little time shaking off the rust this past weekend, sweeping its three-game series against Georgia Southern. Senior pitcher Randi Rupp (16-6) was used in all three games; she threw a one-hitter in a 6-1 win to open a doubleheader, preserved the 5-4 second-game win by entering the game...
Golden: An elusive title will elevate perception of Michigan’s Beilein

Golden: An elusive title will elevate perception of Michigan’s Beilein

Michigan’s John Beilein has won more games than most, but it’s the game he hasn’t won that’s missing on a sparkling resume’. It’s not entirely fair, but beating Villanova in Monday’s championship game will transform him from a really good coach to a great one in the eyes of many. “I think that is something that people underestimate,” said Michigan...
Golden: Jay Wright’s elite Villanova offense shoots KU out of the gym

Golden: Jay Wright’s elite Villanova offense shoots KU out of the gym

Could you imagine this Villanova missing 21 of 25 three-point attempts in a basketball game? Yeah, me neither. It seems like forever ago, but the Wildcats struggled mightily from distance in their Elite Eight win over Texas Tech. Those Boston rims were pretty stingy and Nova was in a real tussle with a tough-minded Red Raider team that was ranked in the top-10 at several points of the season. They...
Golden: Wagner ends Loyola’s Cinderella run

Golden: Wagner ends Loyola’s Cinderella run

Moe Wagner, Cinderella killer. Michigan awoke from a first-half slumber Saturday, thanks to its burly big who put the Wolverines on his back, effectively carrying his team to its second national title game appearance in six seasons. The book is now closed on Loyola-Chicago’s epic NCAA Tournament run. Michigan 69, Loyola-Chicago 57. Great players usually emerge when the stakes are the highest...
As Masters week arrives, favorites are abundant

As Masters week arrives, favorites are abundant

Consider this a tradition unlike any other. Two or three or more of the best players win tournaments in the months leading to April, and golf fans hear the familiar, soothing notes of “Augusta” in TV spots and declare that this is shaping up to be the best Masters of them all. No doubt enough has happened in 12 weeks for fans to be counting the days. Dustin Johnson started the year with...
Golden: The Self-less approach — Kansas coach pushes the right buttons

Golden: The Self-less approach — Kansas coach pushes the right buttons

Bill Self doesn’t hold his tongue when it comes to his team’s play or lack thereof. “Everything he says is water off your back,” Kansas senior guard Devonte’ Graham said. “He doesn’t hold grudges. There are times when I’m like, ‘You were just screaming at me, and now you’re trying to hug me?’” The Jayhawks have heard it all from...
Kansas-Villanova matchup an argument for reseeding Final Four

Kansas-Villanova matchup an argument for reseeding Final Four

Don’t mind Kansas or Villanova if the winner starts cutting down nets Saturday night. In the most lopsided Final Four bracket since the tournament was expanded in 1985, these two No. 1 seeds square off in what might as well be called the “Big Boy Semifinal.” Barring an injury or something else totally unexpected, the winner will be favored to take the championship two nights later...
Texas AD Chris Del Conte: ‘No added value’ to host MLS team at stadiums

Texas AD Chris Del Conte: ‘No added value’ to host MLS team at stadiums

If Columbus Crew SC is to play the 2019 season in Austin, it will be at a temporary facility. Two stadiums at the University of Texas — Mike A. Myers Stadium and Royal-Memorial Stadium — fit the parameters for size, location and accessibility, but UT athletic director Chris Del Conte said Thursday that the school has not been approached by either Precourt Sports Ventures or Major League...

Texas Relays: What, who to watch on Friday and Saturday

TRACKING THE RELAYS More than 7,000 athletes are competing at this year’s Texas Relays, representing competitors from 35 states and 21 countries. There are 195 college teams and 712 high school squads. Here are a handful of events as well as a couple of Longhorns to follow at Myers Stadium: Friday The first of two full days of the Relays — professional, college and high school athletes...

Central Texas hole-in-one listings

Billy Abel, driver, 180-yard 12th hole at Jimmy Clay; witnesses: Gary Briscoe, Mike Moore, Harry Hendrickson, Penny Lewis Matthew Agius, driver, 365-yard 8th hole at Star Ranch; witnesses: Ed White, Keith Kyle, Greg Blair Marc Curtis, 6-iron, 135-yard 12th hole at Morris Williams; witnesses: Reginald D. Smith, Dana M. Springs, Latosha D. Taylor Ryan Hanson, 9-iron, 164-yard 13th hole at Delaware Springs...
NFL hopeful Manziel joins Aggies for another go at pro day

NFL hopeful Manziel joins Aggies for another go at pro day

Johnny Manziel’s pro day Tuesday definitely wasn’t of the rock-star variety. It was short on scripted glitz, but maybe it packed more substance than his first one four years ago. Manziel, the former Texas A&M star quarterback and the 2012 Heisman Trophy winner, was a last-minute addition to Tuesday’s pro-day lineup in Aggieland. Scouts and coaches, representing 32 NFL teams, gathered...
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