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Jerry Sandusky's lawyers argue for new trial

Jerry Sandusky's lawyers argue for new trial

BELLEFONTE, Pa. (AP) Jerry Sandusky emerged from prison to attend a hearing 200 miles away at which his lawyers argued Thursday he deserves a new trial on child molestation charges because they didn't have enough time to prepare for the first one.

The 68-year-old former Penn State assistant coach played no active role in the proceedings, but briefly greeted his wife and supporters beforehand.

At the hearing in Centre County court in Bellefonte, Sandusky's lawyers cited flaws in the trial, including that they were swamped by about 12,000 pages of documents and other materials, that Judge John Cleland should have instructed jurors about the years it took for victims to report he had abused them, and that hearsay evidence was improperly allowed.

But prosecutors countered by showing most of the documents and records were not relevant to the trial. They also got lead defense attorney Joe Amendola to acknowledge that he did not find any he would have used when he reviewed them after the trial.

``Where's the harm?'' the judge asked Sandusky defense lawyer Norris Gelman. ``That's where I'm hung up on this one.''

Cleland did not indicate when he might rule. If Sandusky does not get a new trial - he is also asking to have charges thrown out entirely - he can then appeal to Superior Court, and has indicated he will.

Sandusky was convicted in June of 45 counts of child sexual abuse over a period of several years and is serving a 30- to 60-year sentence at a state prison. He has maintained his innocence, but his arrest tarnished Penn State's vaunted football program and led to the firing of longtime coach Joe Paterno, who died nearly a year ago from lung cancer.

Gelman noted that some of the victims waited more than a decade to disclose their abuse.

``This is a long, long time not to make some kind of report ... and it goes to their credibility,'' Gelman said.

Prosecutor Frank Fina told Cleland that the issue of ``failure to report'' by the victims was a major theme during the trial. It was brought up during both parties' opening statements and closing arguments and during cross-examination of the eight victims who testified against Sandusky, he said.

Amendola's performance at trial and his questioning of witnesses are evidence that a fair trial took place even though the case moved from arrest to verdict in about eight months, Fina said.

``He used everything he had to cross-examine these young men,'' Fina said.

Amendola, who testified Thursday, said the trial's timetable did not permit sufficient investigation into the accusers' backgrounds.

He also described a scramble to cope with a string of pretrial hearings while trying to adequately analyze the discovery materials. At one point, his copier even broke down.

``Did we look at the material? Yes, we glanced over it,'' he said under questioning by Gelman.

Amendola recounted how he and co-counsel Karl Rominger sought unsuccessfully to be taken off the case, evidence of their frustration over how quickly things were moving.

After the hearing, Gelman compared Sandusky's odds of a new trial to a three-point shot in basketball, while Fina downplayed the defense's chances of success.

``I think the people of Pennsylvania can be confident this conviction is going to stand,'' Fina told reporters.

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The 2018 NFL schedule is here, but we still don't really know anything

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USA Today Sports Images

The 2018 NFL schedule is here, but we still don't really know anything

The NFL dropped the Redskins' 2018 regular-season schedule on Thursday and everybody will predict the team’s season-long record. 

It’s a fun exercise, and something the football world enjoys doing.

Myself included. 

But don’t read much, if anything, into the schedule right now. 

Every year, some teams look mighty in the offseason only to fall apart in the regular season. 

Need an example? Many predicted the Giants to be the beasts of the NFC East in 2017, and the Eagles to finish last in the NFC East. 

What actually happened? The Giants finished 3-13 and the Eagles won the Super Bowl. 

The NFL cannot be predicted year to year. It can hardly be predicted week to week. 

Last season, two December home games against the Broncos and Cardinals looked very daunting when the schedule came out. Instead, that was a two-game win streak. 

Enjoy the schedule release. It’s a fun time to guess what will happen in 2018.

But remember, once the games start, anything can happen. 

(For the record: My prediction is 9-7.)

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Another Thanksgiving game for Redskins

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Redskins release official 2018 regular-season schedule

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NBC Sports Washington

Redskins release official 2018 regular-season schedule

The 2018 NFL regular-season schedule is finally here.

We’ve known who the Redskins will play in the 2018 season and where the games will be played since the regular season ended.

Now we know the when.

Here is the Redskins 2018 schedule; games are at 1:00 Eastern unless otherwise indicated.

The first thing that jumps out is the Thanksgiving game. This will be the third straight year that the Redskins have played on Thanksgiving. Two years ago they lost at Dallas and last year the got a win over the Giants at home. 

Three Thanksgiving games in a row for a team that is not the Lions or Cowboys, the two teams that traditionally host on Turkey Day, is not without precedent although it is unusual. Besides Dallas and Detroit, only two teams have played in three straight Thanksgiving games since the 1970 merger.

The Bears played every Thanksgiving from 1979-1981. The Cardinals also played three straight, but there is an asterisk there since they hosted the game instead of the Cowboys in 1975 and 1977. In between the played at Dallas on Thanksgiving.

Washington Redskins 2018 Regular-Season Schedule

Week 1: Sunday, 9/9. 4:05 PM at Arizona Cardinals
Week 2 9/16 Colts
Week 3 9/23 Packers
Week 4 BYE
Week 5 10/8 (Mon.) @Saints (8:15)
Week 6 10/14 Panthers
Week 7 10/21 Cowboys (4:25)
Week 8 10/28 @Giants
Week 9 11/4 Falcons
Week 10 11/11 @Bucs
Week 11 11/18 Texans
Week 12 11/22 (Thanksgiving) @Cowboys (4:30)
Week 13 12/3 (Mon.) @Eagles (8:15)
Week 14 12/9 Giants
Week 15 12/16 @Jaguars
Week 16 12/23 @Titans (Time TBD)
Week 17 12/30 Eagles

2018 REDSKINS SCHEDULE NOTES:

  • If the Redskins are going to take advantage of home cooking, they will need to get off to a good start. They have five home games in the first half of the season. After Week 9 they have just three home games and they face a stretch of four road games in five weeks in late November and December. Three of the teams in that stretch, the Eagles, Jaguars, and Titans, made the playoffs and won at least one game. The Eagles, of course, won it all. The other road game in that stretch is against the Cowboys, who finished 9-7 last year. 
     
  • The Redskins will open on the road for the first time since 2014 when they opened in Houston. This year they will have to travel west to Arizona and try to win to remove the goose egg in Jay Gruden’s 0-4 opening-game record as coach of the Redskins.
     
  • They get an early bye, in Week 4. That will be their earliest bye week since 2007 when the bye also came in Week 4. 
     
  • On the plus side, their two games in Florida come at times when hot weather is unlikely to be a factor. Their game in Tampa comes in November and the contest at Jacksonville comes in mid-December. 
     

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