Orioles

Tsonga gives France early lead at Hopman Cup

Tsonga gives France early lead at Hopman Cup

PERTH, Australia (AP) Jo-Wilfried Tsonga has handed John Isner his second straight singles defeat at the Hopman Cup, beating the American 6-3, 6-2 to give France a 1-0 lead in the only tie between teams Tuesday.

Later Tuesday on hard court at the Perth Arena, Venus Williams faces Mathilde Johansson in an attempt to take the match into a decisive mixed doubles.

The Americans won their opening match at the eight-team tournament, beating South Africa on Sunday, while France lost to Spain.

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Phillies analyst calls team 'lifeless' following Orioles series sweep

Phillies analyst calls team 'lifeless' following Orioles series sweep

Tuesday saw the Baltimore Orioles take down the Philadelphia Phillies 10-9 in extra innings in the first game of a three-game set. The loss for Philadelphia could largely be pinned on some bad defensive-lapses in the field.

Following the result, NBC Sports Philadelphia analyst Ricky Bottalico let the Phillies know just how disappointing their play on the field was

“I thought this game was an embarrassment to baseball. I felt like the Bad News Bears-type stuff today," Bottalico said.

On Thursday, Baltimore completed the sweep with an 11-4 drubbing. So, of course, Bottalico had some more words for Philadelphia. The team went from an "embarrassment" to "lifeless."

"Watching this game, I saw a lifeless Phillies team," Bottalico said. "Coming into a game where you're playing the Baltimore Orioles and the Orioles had just beaten you up two games in a row, you would have thought there would be some fight back."

Bottalico specifically took issue with the Phillies bullpen, which has consistently struggled throughout the 2020 season.

"If I was out there and I was in this bullpen and I wasn't pitching well right now, I would be scared to death to walk into that clubhouse every day after the game," Bottalico said.

Coming into the 2020 season, the Phillies were expected to contend for the playoffs while the Orioles struggled through another year of rebuilding. For at least three days in August, the roles were reversed. 

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NCAA president Mark Emmert says fall champions can't happen at this time

NCAA president Mark Emmert says fall champions can't happen at this time

While conferences and schools across the nation are withdrawing from the 2020 fall sports season due to the coronavirus pandemic, others remain adamant that games and seasons can be played.

However, for those who are planning on having a fall campaign, their hopes of competing for a championship could still be derailed. According to NCAA president Mark Emmert, all Division I sports besides football --- which operates on the bowl schedule -- are in jeopardy of losing a title season due to the lack of teams involved.

“We cannot, now at this point, have fall NCAA Championships because there’s not enough schools participating," Emmert said during the NCAA Social Series on Thursday. "The Board of Governors also said, ‘look if you don’t have half the schools playing the sport you can’t have a legitimate championship.’”

Emmert noted that the fall can still be beneficial to universities as programs can put all their focus into safety protocols and maintaining the health of players. Additionally, players can still remain on campus and prepare for the spring season.

As for actual competition in the coming months, Emmert has begun to look ahead to 2021 with the hope that teams have the opportunity to compete when the spring comes around. Specifically, he wants to make sure that winter and spring sports -- who already lost a season in 2020 -- are not forced to suffer through the same fate again.

In order to do that, he's considering numerous altercations to sports such as modified bubbles and smaller brackets for postseason play. The procedures will become clearer in the coming months as more questions about the virus and its impact are answered.

For now, Emmert is optimistic that the NCAA has the capability to bring sports back in a safe way. But to do so, a lot of work still needs to be done.

“There’s a way to do it. Will it be normal? Of course not, you’ll be playing fall sports in the spring. Will it create other challenges? Of course. But is it doable? Yeah, it is doable and we want to do that," Emmert said. "We want to, again, make it work for these students.”

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