McCarron should be right at home in Miami


McCarron should be right at home in Miami

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) Alabama quarterback AJ McCarron should feel right at home in when the second-ranked Crimson Tide take on No. 1 Notre Dame for the BCS national title on Monday night at Sun Life Stadium.

That's because he's seen himself playing there for years.

Sun Life is the home of the Miami Dolphins - and the Miami Hurricanes, the team that McCarron grew up rooting for. He strongly considered attending the school and playing for the `Canes.

``I love `The U,''' said McCarron, a native of Mobile, Ala. ``But I just felt like at the end of the day, it was the best situation for me to stay in the state.''

McCarron is tall and lean, reminiscent of former Miami quarterback Ken Dorsey, who just happens to be one of the Alabama star's favorite players. McCarron also grew up idolizing former Hurricanes like Willis McGahee, Andre Johnson and Kellen Winslow.

``What probably attracted me the most is, just like whenever you're a little kid, the team that's winning the most is probably your favorite,'' McCarron said.

He ultimately picked the Tide over Oklahoma and Miami.

And even though McCarron was a 2-year-old at the time, Alabama's win over the Hurricanes for the 1992 national title seems like it's a topic of regular discussion in his house.

``My dad went to that game and missed my brother being born to go to that game,'' McCarron said. ``My mom was not happy.''


NIX THE SINGING: Notre Dame defensive tackle Louis Nix and Alabama wide receiver Christion Jones are obviously exceptional football players.

And as singers ... well, they're exceptional football players.

The players got swallowed up in the ``Gangnam Style'' craze on Wednesday night, when the Fighting Irish and Crimson Tide were invited to watch the Miami Heat play the Dallas Mavericks. DJ Irie, part of the Heat in-game entertainment crew, had Nix and Jones at his courtside spot during a break in the action to entertain fans with their version of the popular song.

Nix referred to himself by his Twitter handle while introducing himself to the crowd, then sang for just a few seconds and started to mimic the dance that goes along with the wildly popular song.

Jones seemed to have a bit of stage fright as well, yet walked away laughing as the sellout crowd of just over 20,000 NBA fans roared for both.


SPINMEISTER: Eddie Lacy might have a future in politics since he's mastered the spin.

The Alabama tailback frequently spins away from defenders without seeming to lose much of his momentum, and it works for him.

Lacy even jokes that he created the move when T.J. Yeldon or Kenyon Drake try it out in practice.

``It's just funny,'' Tide wide receiver Kevin Norwood said. ``He'll swear up and down that he invented it, and he put like a trademark on his spin move. He'll try to make a joke, like `I'm going to charge you $15.'''

Teammates have nicknamed him ``Circle Button'' after the move that simulates a spin in video games. Lacy says he's been doing it a long time.

``It's just something I've been able to do naturally,'' he said.

Center Barrett Jones said it's one thing that separates him from predecessors Trent Richardson and Mark Ingram.

``One difference is I've never seen a spin move like he has,'' Jones said. ``He's got a great spin move. I've never seen him get tackled by the first guy he spins on. ``


FUZZY IRISH: Just call them the Notre Dame Fuzzy Irish.

About a dozen Notre Dame players have been growing beards since early in the season, and they are looking pretty bushy right now.

Defensive end Kapron Lewis-Moore is one of the founding members of the beard gang. His is full, thick and dark, though neatly groomed.

The senior said the movement began organically, with no planning nor direction. It wasn't really tied to Notre Dame's winning streak, though at this point the guys who started it aren't about to shave.

The other mainstays in the gang, in from the start, are safeties Zeke Motta and Matthias Farley, guard Mike Golic Jr., and nose guard Tony Springman.

Others have jumped on and off, which doesn't always sit well with the founders.

``Bennett Jackson was on the beard but he shaved it a couple days ago,'' Lewis-Moore said. ``I'm kind of mad at him for that. Then there's guys with the baby face who can't grow it.''

Farley said he was considering shaving Tuesday, the day after the national championship game against Alabama. Lewis-Moore said he probably won't keep the beard long-term either.

``I got to look good for the ladies,'' he said.

The best beards? Lewis-Moore gives the nod to Springman and Golic.

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Game 73 Capitals vs. Stars Date, Time, How to Watch, Game Thread


Game 73 Capitals vs. Stars Date, Time, How to Watch, Game Thread

What: Washington Capitals vs. Dallas Stars

Where: Capital One Arena, Washington, D.C.

When: 7:00 p.m. ET

How to Watch: Capitals-Stars will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington (Channel Finder)

Live Stream: You can watch the Capitals-Stars game on NBC Sports Washington's live stream page.


The Capitals (41-24-7) take on the Stars (38-27-8) Tuesday, March 20 at 7:00 p.m. ET at Capital One Arena.


The Capitals-Stars game will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington. Coverage kicks off with Capitals FaceOff at 6:00 p.m. followed by Caps GameTime at 6:30 p.m. Stay with NBC Sports Washington for Caps Extra following the game, Caps Overtime at 10:00 p.m. and Caps in 30 at 11:00 p.m. for all your postgame coverage. (NBC Sports Washington channel Finder)

6:00 p.m. — Caps FaceOff
6:30 p.m. — Caps GameTime
7:00 p.m. — Capitals vs. Stars
9:30 p.m. — Caps Extra
10:00 p.m. — Caps Overtime
11:00 p.m. — Caps in 30


Here are the projected lines for the Caps-Islanders game:

Alex Ovechkin -  Nicklas Backstrom - Tom Wilson
Andre Burakovsky - Lars Eller - T.J. Oshie
Jakub Vrana - Travis Boyd - Brett Connolly
Chandler Stephenson - Jay Beagle - Devante Smith-Pelly

Christian Djoos - John Carlson
Dmitry Orlov - Matt Niskanen
Michal Kempny - Jakub Jerabek

Braden Holtby starts with Philipp Grubauer as backup

Scratches: Evgeny Kuznetsov (upper body injury), Alex Chiasson, Brooks Orpik (lower body injury)


The Capitals-Flyers game, as well as Caps GameTime and Caps Extra, is available to stream live here through NBC Sports Washington's live stream page and is available to authenticated NBC Sports Washington subscribers on desktops, tablets, mobile devices and connected TVs anywhere in the United States.


Use the comment section below to discuss the game action with other Capitals fans. 

For all the latest Caps coverage, follow Capitals Insider Tarik El-Bashir, Capitals correspondent JJ Regan and the NBC Sports Capitals account on Twitter. Be sure check out our Capitals page and NBC Sports Washington's Facebook page.

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Need to Know: Looking at the Redskins' defensive depth chart after early phase of free agency

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Need to Know: Looking at the Redskins' defensive depth chart after early phase of free agency

Here is what you need to know on this Tuesday, March 20, 37 days before the NFL draft.  

Looking at the 2018 depth chart—defense

The Redskins are likely to make a few more free agent acquisitions and there is the draft, but the depth chart is beginning to settle in. Let’s take a look at where the defensive side of the ball stands now. The offense was covered yesterday.

Defensive line: Jonathan Allen, Matt Ioannidis, Stacy McGee
Backups: Terrell McClain, Anthony Lanier, Ziggy Hood

I wrote this on Monday afternoon wondering if I would have to edit it to add Jonathan Hankins but that has not happened yet. I have to think that they will use a top draft pick on a D-lineman if they don’t land one in free agency. That could create some competition between Hood and McClain for the last roster spot.

Linebackers: OLBs Preston Smith, Ryan Kerrigan; ILBs Mason Foster, Zach Brown
Backups: Ryan Anderson, Zach Vigil, Josh Harvey-Clemons, Martrell Spaight

Again, I thought I might have to edit this because of the return of Junior Galette or the addition of Pernell McPhee but as it is, the Redskins are looking for an additional reserve edge rusher to go with Anderson. There might only be room for two backup inside linebackers between Vigil, Harvey-Clemons, and Spaight.

Defensive backs: CBs Quinton Dunbar, Josh Norman; FS Montae Nicholson, SS D.J. Swearinger
Backups: Orlando Scandrick, Fabian Moreau, Josh Holsey, Deshazor Everett

I debated including Su’a Cravens here because he is on the roster, but I think that the odds that he will be on the 53-man roster in September are slim. If he doesn’t return they will need some help at safety. You can count on Scandrick playing in the slot. They seem to like both Dunbar and Moreau better on the outside and Scandrick can give Holsey a chance to develop inside.

Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page and follow him on Twitter @TandlerNBCS.

Tandler on Twitter


Days until:

—Offseason workouts begin (4/16) 28
—Training camp starts (approx. 7/26) 130
—2018 NFL season starts (9/9) 174

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