Men’s basketball looks to extend win streak against Utah

first_img“Honestly, this was the most confident game I’ve had all season,” Okongwu said per the Associated Press after USC’s win over the Beavers. “It was really fun coming out there and playing against a sold-out crowd.” USC is coming back from a two-game road trip in the Beaver State, where the Trojans fell to No. 12 Oregon in double overtime but triumphed over Oregon State. A couple of costly turnovers and mistakes late in the Oregon game caused USC to suffer their second Pac-12 loss, but the win over Oregon State proved the Trojans’ potential is still alive and well in the conference. Okongwu is top-five in the Pac-12 in rebounds, blocks and field goal percentage this season and does not seem to show any signs of slowing down. He and the Trojans — the best in the Pac-12 in rebounds and the worst in free-throw percentage and turnovers committed — will attempt to stop a Utah team that currently ranks first in the conference in free throw percentage. Freshman forward Onyeka Okongwu has been a top rebounder and shot blocker in the Pac-12 this year. (James Wolfe | Daily Trojan) Having won four of its last five games and sitting in a tie for second place in the Pac-12, the USC men’s basketball team will face Utah Thursday night at Galen Center. Led by phenom freshman forward Onyeka Okongwu, the Trojans are set to play a Utes team led by sophomore forward Timmy Allen that is coming off two straight wins against Washington State and Washington. USC will also have to look out for Utah redshirt freshman center Lahat Thioune in the paint, as the Senegal native is the Utes’ leader in field goal percentage at 72.2%, making him their most efficient player while averaging just 17 minutes per game. Expect Allen, Thioune and freshman guard Rylan Jones to run a majority of Utah’s offense and look for Okongwu and Rakocevic to make important plays near the rim on both sides of the ball. Senior forward Nick Rakocevic is 8-15 from beyond the arc, leading USC in 3-point percentage. (James Wolfe | Daily Trojan) “Rakocevic and [Okongwu], those guys are a load inside,” Utah head coach Larry Krystkowiak said at a press conference Tuesday. “[USC is] an elite rebounding team in our league, shot-blocking team. They provide a great post presence for those guys and then they’ve got a bunch of capable shooters and athletes.” USC head coach Andy Enfield and his team should also expect Utah to both commit and draw lots of fouls given the two teams’ shooting percentages from the charity stripe. The Trojans have arguably struggled at the free-throw line more than they have anywhere else on the court this season. However, as Enfield said after the Oregon State win, USC’s resilience both at home and on the road “is a credit to [USC’s] players” at this point of the season and is what has helped the Trojans catapult themselves into a tie with No. 20 Colorado for second place in the conference. The crowd of more than 9,000 in Corvallis, Ore. was in for a treat as they got a chance to watch a united USC team that has excited college basketball fans with acrobatic plays from Okongwu and freshman guard Ethan Anderson, a clutch comeback win against Stanford led by sophomore guard Elijah Weaver and solid 3-point shooting from senior forward Nick Rakocevic and redshirt senior guards Quinton Adlesh and Daniel Utomi. USC and Utah will tip off Thursday at 6:30 p.m. at Galen Center.last_img read more

Here’s a complete list of NFL players opting out of the 2020 season

first_imgArizona CardinalsMarcus Gilbert, OTAtlanta Falcons-Baltimore RavensAndre Smith, OTDe’Anthony Thomas, WRBuffalo BillsE.J. Gaines, CBStar Lotulelei, DTCarolina PanthersChristian Miller, OLBJordan Mack, LBCincinnati BengalsIsaiah Prince, OTJosh Tupou, DTChicago BearsJordan Lucas, SEddie Goldman, DTCleveland BrownsMalcolm Pridgeon, GColby Gossett, GAndrew Billings, DTDrew Forbes, GDrake Dorbeck, OTDallas CowboysJamize Olawale, FBStephen Guidry, WRMaurice Canady, CBDenver BroncosJa’Wuan James, OTKyle Peko, DTDetroit LionsRussell Bodine, CGeronimo Allison, WRJohn Atkins, DTGreen Bay PackersDevin Funchess, WRHouston TexansEddie Vanderdoes, DTIndianapolis ColtsMarvell Tell, CBRolan Milligan, SSkai Moore, LBKansas City ChiefsLucas Niang, OTDamien Williams, RBLaurent Duvernay-Tardif, GLas Vegas RaidersUkeme Eligwe, LBD.J. Killings, DBJeremiah Valoaga, DELos Angeles Chargers-Los Angeles RamsChandler Brewer, OTJacksonville JaguarsRashaan Melvin, CBLerentee McCray, DE/LBAl Woods, DTMiami DolphinsAlbert Wilson, WRAllen Hurns, WRMinnesota VikingsMichael Pierce, DTNew England PatriotsMatt LaCosse, TEMarqise Lee, WRPatrick Chung, SDont’a Hightower, LBBrandon Bolden, RBMarcus Cannon, OTDanny Vitale, FBNajee Toran, OLNew Orleans SaintsCole Wick, TEJason Vander Laan, TENew York GiantsSam Beal, CBDa’Mari Scott, WRNate Solder, LTNew York JetsJosh Doctson, WRC.J. Mosley, LBLeo Koloamatangi, OLPhiladelphia EaglesMarquise Goodwin, WRSan Francisco 49ersShon Coleman, OLTravis Benjamin, WRSeattle SeahawksChance Warmack, GPittsburgh Steelers-Tampa Bay BuccaneersBrad Seaton, OTTennessee TitansAnthony McKinney, OLWashington Football TeamJosh Harvey-Clemons, LBCaleb Brantley, DLFree agentsLarry Warford, G The NFL and the NFL Players Association on July 24 reached an agreement on opt-out rules for players who don’t want to participate in the 2020 season amid the COVID-19 pandemic.And only a few hours passed after the agreement was reached before the first NFL player announced he would opt out of the 2020 season. MORE: Everything to know about 2020 training campsThat the first NFL player to opt out of his 2020 contract doubles as a medical doctor is probably telling. Said Chiefs guard Laurent Duvernay-Tardif in his announcement: “Being at the front line during this offseason has given me a different perspective on this pandemic and the stress it puts on individuals and our healthcare system. I cannot allow myself to potentially transmit the virus to our communities simply to play the sport I love. If I am to take risks, I will do it caring for patients.”The NFL season opt-out rules were simple. Anybody was free to decide not to play in 2020, and the contracts for all players who opted out will toll to 2021.NFL players who opted out for 2020 also will receive salary advances or stipends. Those who opted out for medical reasons because they qualified as high risk regarding COVID-19 will receive a $350,000 stipend for the season, and those who opt out voluntarily will receive a $150,000 salary advance for the season. (Undrafted rookies who opt out voluntarily are not eligible to earn the $150,000 stipend.)Reminder: the deadline to opt out of the 2020 season is tomorrow at 4pm ET.— NFLPA (@NFLPA) August 5, 2020So Duvernay-Tardif, for example, will get the $150,000 salary advance since he opted out voluntarily, and his 2020 contract will toll to 2021. He was scheduled to earn $2.75 million this season, so he’ll earn that (minus the $150,000) next year.MORE: Complete NFL training camp schedule for 2020July 28 marked the latest training camp reporting date for all veteran players, and camps this year will feature a longer-than-normal acclimation period before fully padded practices begin Aug. 17. The 2020 NFL preseason was canceled, but the regular season is still scheduled to begin Thursday, Sept. 10 when the Chiefs host the Texans.Players had until 4 p.m. ET on Thursday, Aug. 6 to decide whether to opt out of the 2020 season and earn the stipends/contract tolling.Below is the complete, team-by-team list of players who decided to do just that.NFL players opting out of 2020 season(The following list is compiled from various media reports.)last_img read more