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Cubs prospect Baez set to join team in Colorado


August 4th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

DENVER (AP) — Touted prospect Javier Baez will join the Chicago Cubs on Tuesday in Colorado and could make his major league debut in the three-game series against the Rockies. The 21-year-old Baez got off to a slow start this year in the minors, but has been playing well of late. The middle infielder, who is known for his tremendous bat speed, hit .300 with 12 homers and 34 RBIs in his last 32 games for Triple-A Iowa.

Baez will have his contract purchased from the minors before the series opener against Colorado. There was no word Monday on a corresponding roster move. Baez is part of a loaded minor league system for Chicago that Cubs fans are hoping will lead the team back to respectability after a string of down years. The Cubs are 47-63 this season and in last in the NL Central.

Hawkeyes optimistic as fall camp opens


August 4th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — The uncertainty that hung over Iowa heading into last year’s fall camp has been replaced by stability and reasonably high expectations. That doesn’t mean the Hawkeyes can afford to cruise through August. Iowa has five starters to replace on the back end of its defense, including three linebackers that reached the NFL. The Hawkeyes also need to sort out playing time at running back, wide receiver and tight end, and the new starters on the offensive line need to be ready by the end of the month because the program’s depth isn’t what it used to be.

But the good news for the Hawkeyes is that they appear to have solid options at every position. The task for the next three weeks will be to settle on starters for the opener on Aug. 30 against Northern Iowa and beyond. “This is a very, very pivotal three weeks for our football team,” Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz said Monday. “It’s a great time for development. And we’ve got a lot of things that we’re curious to learn and curious to see.”

Here are five things to watch as Iowa opened fall practice on Monday.

NEW LINEBACKERS: The Iowa coaching staff has long been high on senior Quinton Alston whose playing time had previously been limited because of the presence of standouts Christian Kirksey, Anthony Hitchens and James Morris. Alston is expected to lead a unit featuring sophomore Reggie Spearman, junior Travis Perry and as many as four redshirt freshmen in the rotation. “Some guys just make you feel good,” Ferentz said of Alston, who struggled earlier in his career. “When you see that light come on or the switch flip a little bit, it’s fun.”

FREE LOMAX: Junior defensive back Jordan Lomax was expected to start at cornerback for Iowa a year ago, but injuries and the emergence of freshman Desmond King scuttled those plans. The Hawkeyes felt strongly enough about finding a spot for Lomax that they moved him to free safety though, and he’s expected to start there this season. Lomax, a 5-foot-10 junior, should be able to lean on senior strong safety John Lowdermilk as he navigates his first fall camp in a new position.

SKILL QUESTIONS: The Hawkeyes will likely split most of their carries between senior Mark Weisman and junior Jordan Canzeri this season. Iowa is deep and experienced at wide receiver as well, though rising redshirt freshman Derrick Willies could earn a starting spot over the next three weeks after an electrifying spring camp. Senior Ray Hamilton will finally get his chance as Iowa’s top tight end following C.J. Fiedorowicz’s graduation, but Jake Duzey will also get a chance to be a major factor for the Hawkeyes. “Ray Hamilton is a guy, in my opinion, that is probably better than we think maybe he is,” Ferentz said.

LINED UP: Iowa returns three starting offensive linemen, including All-America candidate Brandon Scherff at left tackle, and senior Andrew Donnal has been installed at right tackle after playing both guard and tackle a year ago. Redshirt freshman Sean Walsh will open camp as the starting left guard, and the Hawkeyes will be counting on Walsh to prove he belongs there because their rotation behind him is filled with untested underclassmen. “We’ve got to focus on the smaller details, because that’s what got us in trouble last year, with false starts. We’ve all got to be on the same page,” Scherff said.

EXTRA POINTS: Wide receiver Damond Powell suffered a sports hernia injury this summer, but he said Monday that he should be ready for the opener…The competition between Maurice Fleming and Sean Draper for the left cornerback spot might be the closest of any starting job in the program…True freshman Tyler Wiegers will likely start the season as Iowa’s third quarterback after Nic Shimonek left the program to walk on at Texas Tech.

Iowa revises free tuition for tickets promotion


August 4th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Iowa has revised a promotion offering free tuition to five students buying season tickets for football by making the offer available to all students. The Hawkeyes were forced to suspend a plan that offered $8,000 in free tuition to randomly selected student ticket holders after it ran afoul of state raffle laws.

But Iowa brought it back Monday. It now says that any student who wants to participate in the promotion simply has to notify the athletic department by 5 p.m. on Tuesday. Iowa’s revised plan was approved by the state’s Attorney General’s office.

The tuition promotion was one of a number of plans by Iowa to combat lagging student attendance.

8AM Sportscast 08-04-2014

Podcasts, Sports

August 4th, 2014 by Chris Parks

w/ Jim Field


Chiefs’ Berry, Cooper return to practice


August 3rd, 2014 by Ric Hanson

ST. JOSEPH, Mo. (AP) – Pro Bowl safety Eric Berry and starting cornerback Marcus Cooper are practicing again at training camp following minor injuries. Berry missed time with a sore right heel. Cooper tweaked a hamstring. Their return Sunday was the first positive injury news in a while for the Chiefs. They have been struggling with injuries, especially in their suspect secondary.

Backup safety Sanders Commings is out after surgery for a severe high ankle sprain and fractured fibula. Reserve defensive backs David Van Dyke, DeMarcus Van Dyke and Phillip Gaines also have missed time with various injuries.

Linebacker Dezman Moses left Sunday’s workout after hurting his elbow.

Lackey wins debut, Cardinals nip Brewers 3-2


August 3rd, 2014 by Ric Hanson

ST. LOUIS (AP) – John Lackey won his St. Louis debut when the Cardinals rallied for three runs in the seventh inning, capped by a go-ahead from rookie Oscar Taveras to beat the Milwaukee Brewers 3-2 on Sunday. The Cardinals took two of three from NL Central-leading Milwaukee and pulled within one game of the division lead.

Lackey (1-0) was the Cardinals’ big catch at the trade deadline that capitalized on Boston’s sell-off. The right-hander won the clinching Game 6 of the World Series against St. Louis last fall allowed two runs and seven hits in seven innings and is 12-7 overall. Trevor Rosenthal struck out Carlos Gomez with two on for his major league-leading 34th save in 38 chances.

Milwaukee starter Matt Garza was pulled after allowing one hit in six innings. Matt Holliday homered off Zach Duke with one out in the seventh. Recently acquired A.J. Pierzynski hit a tying single off Jeremy Jeffress (0-1) and Taveras singled up the middle.

State Baseball Championship results, 8/2/2014


August 2nd, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Second-seeded Twin Cedars defeated top-seeded and defending state champion Mason City Newman Catholic 8-2 in the Class 1A finals Saturday afternoon at Principal Park, finishing the season with a perfect 36-0 record.

North Polk ended Beckman Catholic’s two-year reign as state champion as the Comets defeated the Trailblazers 2-0 in the Class 2A state championship game Saturday afternoon at Principal Park, earning their school’s first state baseball championship. The two teams had met for the 2A title in 2012 and 2013, with Beckman winning by scores of 3-1 and 2-1.

Fifth-seeded Davenport Assumption won the Class 3A state championship in walk-off fashion, defeating sixth-seeded Dallas Center-Grimes 1-0 Saturday evening at Principal Park.

A pitcher’s duel was front and center of the Class 4A state championship game, as two runs in the top of the first inning were all the sixth-seeded Southeast Polk Rams needed to defeat the fifth-seeded Iowa City West Trojans, 2-0, to claim the title.

Chiefs’ Cooper latest defensive back to go down


August 2nd, 2014 by Ric Hanson

ST. JOSEPH, Mo. (AP) – Marcus Cooper joined the lengthy list of Chiefs defensive backs that were forced to watch practice Saturday after tweaking his hamstring during an early portion of the workout. Cooper has been starting at one of the cornerback positions throughout camp.

The Chiefs were already missing Pro Bowl safety Eric Berry, who hurt his right heel during Thursday’s drill. Backup safety Sanders Commings is out after having surgery on a severe high ankle sprain and for a fracture to his fibula.

Reserve defensive backs David Van Dyke, DeMarcus Van Dyke and Phillip Gaines have also missed time with injuries. All the banged-up bodies forced the Chiefs to sign veteran defensive back Steve Gregory earlier this week.

(Podcast) 7:20-sports, 8/2/2014

Podcasts, Sports

August 2nd, 2014 by Ric Hanson

With Ric Hanson.


2014 Iowa Hunting Seasons Released

Ag/Outdoor, News, Sports

August 2nd, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Iowa deer hunters will notice fewer seasons and changes in certain seasons this year. Officials with the Iowa DNR say the January antlerless deer season has been eliminated, the number of antlerless deer tags has been reduced and hunters in 27 northwest counties are allowed only antlered deer during the first shotgun and early muzzleloader seasons. Crossbows were allowed as a legal method of take for resident Iowa hunters during the late muzzleloader season.

Iowa waterfowl hunters have an experimental September teal only season from Sept. 6-21 in all three waterfowl zones. The remaining waterfowl seasons will be set during the August 14 meeting of the Iowa Department of Natural Resources Natural Resource Commission after the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service issues their season requirements to the states.

Iowa Hunting and Trapping Seasons

Deer Seasons

Youth: Sept. 20-Oct. 5

Disabled Hunter: Sept. 20-Oct. 5

Archery: Oct. 1-Dec. 5 AND Dec. 22-Jan. 10

Early Muzzleloader: Oct. 11-19

Late Muzzleloader: Dec. 22-Jan. 10

First Shotgun: Dec. 6-10

Second Shotgun: Dec. 13-21

Nonresident Holiday: Dec. 24-Jan. 2

 Small Game and Upland Seasons

Youth Rooster Pheasant: Oct. 18-19

Rooster Pheasant: Oct. 25-Jan. 10

Bobwhite Quail: Oct. 25-Jan. 31

Gray Partridge: Oct. 11-Jan. 31

Ruffed Grouse: Oct. 4-Jan. 31

Cottontail Rabbit: Aug. 30-Feb. 28

Fox and Gray Squirrel: Aug. 30-Jan. 31

Crow: Oct. 15-Nov. 30 AND Jan. 14-March 31

Pigeon: Continuous Open Season

Migratory Game Bird Seasons

Mourning Dove: Sept. 1-Nov. 9

September Teal Season: Sept. 6-21 in all three zones. Additional regulations apply.

Furbearer Hunting Seasons

Raccoon: Nov. 1-Jan. 31

Opossum: Nov. 1-Jan. 31

Red and Gray Fox: Nov. 1-Jan. 31

Bobcat: Nov. 1-Jan. 31 Additional regulations apply.

Coyote: Continuous Open Season

Groundhog: Continuous Open Season

Trapping Seasons

Raccoon: Nov.1-Jan. 31

Muskrat: Nov.1-Jan. 31

Red and Gray Fox: Nov.1-Jan. 31

Coyote: Nov.1-Jan. 31

Badger: Nov.1-Jan. 31

Mink: Nov.1-Jan. 31

Weasel: Nov.1-Jan. 31

Opossum: Nov.1-Jan. 31

Striped Skunk: Nov.1-Jan. 31

Beaver: Nov. 1-April 15

Otter: Nov.1-Jan. 31 Additional regulations apply.

Bobcat: Nov.1-Jan. 31 Additional regulations apply.