NCAA

Panthers promote Shula to offensive coordinator

Panthers promote Shula to offensive coordinator

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) After 14 years Mike Shula is getting another chance to run an NFL offense.

The Panthers named Shula as their new offensive coordinator Friday and promoted two other assistant coaches.

Richard Rodgers was named Carolina's special teams coordinator after taking over that role on an interim basis last season and Ricky Proehl was promoted as the Panthers new wide receivers coach after working as an assistant in 2012.

Shula served as the team's quarterbacks coach the last two seasons.

The Panthers chose to hire from within after interviewing candidates from outside the organization.

``After going through the interview process we feel that Mike's familiarity with our offense and personnel lends itself to the offensive coordinator position,'' coach Ron Rivera said. ``He has the experience and knowledge to step in and provide continuity in an area that has been productive over the past two years.''

Shula takes over for Rob Chudzinski, who left to become the Cleveland Browns' head coach.

Shula said he was anxious to get another shot at being an offensive coordinator.

The last time didn't work out so well.

He spent four seasons (1996-99) as the offensive coordinator at Tampa Bay, but the Bucs finished 29th in total offense, 27th in points scored and last in the league in passing, according to STATS INC. They never finished better than 22nd in total offense in any of those four seasons.

However, this time around he has the versatile Cam Newton running the offense.

``I am excited about working with our offense in a more expanded role as offensive coordinator,'' said Shula, the son of Hall of Fame coach Don Shula. ``There are a number of pieces in place for a good offense and our goal is to build on the momentum we had at the end of last season. ``

Shula has helped with the development of Newton, who was named AP Offensive Rookie of the Year in 2011 and who improved statistically in his second season. The Panthers have been ranked seventh and 12th in total offense the past two years.

Shula has 20 years of NFL coaching experience.

In addition to coaching with the Panthers, Bucs, and Jaguars, Shula was also the tight ends coach for the Chicago Bears. He was also served as head coach at Alabama.

Rodgers joined the Panthers last season as assistant special teams coach after 23 seasons of college coaching and was elevated to interim special teams coach nine weeks into the season when Brian Murphy was fired by Rivera. Under Rodgers the Panthers special teams climbed in several NFL rankings over the final seven games, including kickoff coverage, where Carolina finished 11th in the league.

``Richard did a great job of stepping in last season and we want to build upon the foundation that he established in the second half of last season,'' Rivera said.

Proehl spent the last two years as assistant wide receivers coach under Fred Graves, who was fired earlier this offseason.

He also played with the Panthers for three seasons and caught 669 passes for 8,878 yards during his 17-year career.

``Ricky brings a great technical understanding of the wide receiver position and has good insight on our personnel at the position,'' Rivera said. ``I have been very impressed with his work over the past two seasons.''

Daryl Dike's incredible goals leads UVA to the national championship game

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Daryl Dike's incredible goals leads UVA to the national championship game

It's never too late for a beautiful strike.

In the national semifinals between Virginia and Wake Forest, Hoos' leading scorer Daryl Dike, scored a goal for the ages. 

Dike tracked this ball perfectly and buried it past Andrew Pannenberg on his first touch.

Dike wasn't done there, stretching the lead to 2-0 with this beauty of a header:

Next up for UVA is the national championship title game Sunday, December 15th at 6 p.m., where they'll face off with Georgetown in Sahlen's Stadium at WakeMed Soccer Park.

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Wizards release statement on the passing of John Wall's mother

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Wizards release statement on the passing of John Wall's mother

The Washington Wizards announced the passing of John Wall's mother, Frances Pulley on Friday. 

Wall's mother had been battling cancer before her passing. She was 58. 

In a statement on Twitter, the Wizards said, "Sending thoughts and love for John Wall and his family after the passing of his mother, Frances Pulley. She will forever be a part of our #DCFamily."

Zach Leonsis, the senior vice president of strategic initiatives at Monumental Sports & Entertainment, also released a statement

"Thinking of @JohnWall and his family right now. Keeping you guys in our prayers. So terribly sorry for your loss and know that she will be remembered forever. #DCFamily

Wall's Kentucky coach, John Calipari also expressed his condolences for his former star: 

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