Nationals

No. 7 Jayhawks ease by Washburn 62-50 in tuneup

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No. 7 Jayhawks ease by Washburn 62-50 in tuneup

LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) The hallmark of Kansas last season was its ability to win ugly.

The Jayhawks would scrap for loose balls, throw a couple elbows under the basket to grab a rebound, clamp down like a vise-grip on opposing offenses and somehow get out in transition enough to put together the kind of game-changing runs that it takes to win games in March.

Already, it looks like this season's team will be no different.

Ben McLemore had 17 points and 10 rebounds, Elijah Johnson added 13 points and the seventh-ranked Jayhawks overcame 24 turnovers in a 62-50 exhibition victory over Division II Washburn on Monday night.

``There's going to be nights we don't play good. We can still win if we play defense and rebound,'' Kansas coach Bill Self said. ``It's a good lesson you can still win ugly. If last year's team didn't win ugly, we would have won 20 games instead of 32.''

Kansas will try to pretty up its performance on Friday night, when it opens the regular season against Southeast Missouri State, and certainly before a Nov. 13 date with No. 14 Michigan State as part of the Champions Classic in Atlanta.

``We've got to learn something from this. Today could be wasted if you don't learn something from it,'' Johnson said. ``Today I think we learned that you have to win ugly sometimes.''

Despite returning three starters from the team that pushed Kentucky to the limit in last season's national championship game, the Jayhawks have appeared ragged and unpolished through their first two exhibition games against small, in-state schools Emporia State and Washburn.

They needed a 19-1 run to help put away the Hornets last week, and then used a 16-3 run early Monday night before coaxing the game toward its messy conclusion.

``Everybody's thinking too much. There's too many people trying too hard and not just playing,'' Johnson said. ``Everybody is making it too complex, and it's just confusing each other, rather than just rolling with the rhythm and hopping on the same train, building on each play.''

McLemore, who sat out last season as a partial NCAA qualifier, was one of the few players who managed to produce on offense. He combined with Johnson and freshman Perry Ellis to score 29 of the Jayhawks' first 34 points, allowing them to build a 36-24 lead by halftime.

Still, even McLemore gave Self plenty of teachable moments.

One of them came early in the second half, when he gathered in the ball on the wing. With only one smaller defender in his way to the basket, McLemore opted to take a midrange jumper rather than go to the rim, leaving Self to scream halfway across the court for him to attack.

Self wound up calling three timeouts in the first 10 minutes of the second half.

``We weren't executing as well as the first game,'' Ellis said. ``I mean, we weren't pushing it as good as the first game. That's the main thing, I feel. We just weren't pushing it.''

These are the kind of growing pains that Kansas will no doubt experience through the first part of the season, though. Despite being picked to win their ninth consecutive Big 12 title, the reality is they have nine freshmen on the roster, seven of whom could contribute.

How steep has the learning curve been at Kansas? Even the courtside announcer is trying to settle into pronouncing the newcomers' names, half the time calling Anrio Adams with his full name and half the time shortening the freshman guard's first name to simply Rio.

Seven-footer Jeff Withey, one of the nation's premier post defenders, struggled again to get on track. He only had seven points and six rebounds against Emporia State, and had nine points and eight rebounds against the Ichabods, even though he had a massive size advantage in the paint.

Will McNeill scored 13 points to lead Washburn, a school from Topeka, Kan., that went 25-8 last season and was voted No. 2 in the NABC Division II preseason poll.

``I said at halftime that if we could stop this team from going on a run, we can get in this game,'' said McNeill, the biggest reason the Ichabods were within 53-42 with about 5 minutes left.

That's when Withey scored inside, and then made a block at the other to trigger a fastbreak, which Releford finished with a three-point play for a 58-42 lead.

Johnson added a 3 moments later to deliver the knockout blow.

``Kansas is going to be great,'' Washburn coach Bob Chipman said, before adding: ``Man, if we play really hard, we're capable of some great things.''

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Washington Nationals announce the addition of a bullpen cart

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USA TODAY Sports

Washington Nationals announce the addition of a bullpen cart

Sean Doolittle has gotten his wish - the Washington Nationals will now have a bullpen cart for the remainder of the 2018 season. 

In a release on Thursday, the Nationals announced that they will unveil a the WGL Energy Bullpen Cart on their upcoming Friday night game against the Miami Marlins. The cart will be at all remaining home games at Nationals Park.

Both the Nationals’ pitchers and opponents will be able to utilize the cart to enter a game as a reliever. The cart will transport the relief pitcher from the bullpen to their dugout instead of the traditional long trout out to the mound. 

Players are not required to use the vehicle if they do not want to. 

Earlier this season, Doolittle was the first National ever to use the bullpen cart at Chase Field, against the Arizona Diamondbacks. Afterward, he noted that although he had less time, he was not out of breath and “loved it.”

In addition to the Diamondbacks and the Detroit Tigers, the Nationals are the third active team to have a bullpen cart. Per the release, this is the first season that the bullpen cart has been used in MLB since 1995.

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Redskins vs. Jets Preseason Week 2: Date, time, TV channel, live stream, how to watch

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Redskins vs. Jets Preseason Week 2: Date, time, TV channel, live stream, how to watch

After a fight-filled start to joint practices between the Redskins and Jets, the Skins' 2018 NFL preseason schedule continues Thursday night at Fed Ex Field against New York. 

Week 2 of the NFL preseason still doesn't provide a lot of answers to questions about team performance, but it begins to reveal the depth the Redskins could have this season.

One storyline that won't be taking place, is the return of former Redskin Terrelle Pryor, who told reporters after Monday's practice he won't be playing in the game.

The Redskins have bigger things to worry about though, like who will replace rookie Derrius Guice, who's now out for the year with a torn ACL.

The Redskins also have one less name in the fight for receiver depth as well, after Robert Davis suffered a season-ending leg injury as well. 

Ahead of Thursday's preseason matchup, here's everything you need to know to watch.

REDSKINS vs. JETS, PRESEASON WEEK 2

Who: Washington Redskins vs. New York Jets

What: Game 2 of the 2018 NFL Preseason

When: Thursday, Aug. 16, 2018, 8:00 p.m. ET

Where: Fed Ex Field, Landover, MD

TV Channel: ESPN

Live Stream: Watch ESPN

Radio: Redskins Radio Network

Point Spread: Washington, -3

Over/Under: 39.5

Weather: 90 degrees, partly cloudy

REDSKINS vs. PATRIOTS TV SCHEDULE:

5:00 PM: Redskins 100
5:30 PM: Redskins Nation
6:00 PM: Best of the Sports Junkies
7:00 PM: Redskins Kickoff Live

REDSKINS 2018 PRESEASON SCHEDULE

Week 1: Thurs., 8/9, vs. New England Patriots, 7:30 p.m. (L, 26-17)

Week 2: Thurs., 8/16, vs. New York Jets, 8:00 p.m. (ESPN)

Week 3: Fri., 8/24, vs. Denver Broncos, 7:30 p.m. 

Week 4: Thurs., 8/30, vs. Baltimore Ravens, 7:30 p.m. 

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