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Former Missouri defensive end Michael Sam, who in February announced that he was gay, may not be among the 256 men chosen in this year’s NFL draft, which begins Thursday. In fact, based on a historical assessment of players who were rated similarly by media scouting projections, Sam’s chances of being drafted are only about 50-50.Sam, the 2013 SEC Co-Defensive Player of the Year, is rated as a sixth-round pick on the Scouts Inc. draft board, which is available through ESPN Insider. That might seem to imply that he’s likely to be drafted, because the NFL draft has seven rounds.But players projected to be chosen late in the draft are hard to differentiate from one another. You can think of NFL prospects as representing the tail end of a bell curve. At the extreme end of the tail are a small number of potential franchise talents, such as Andrew Luck and Bo Jackson. The curve gets denser and denser with players the farther down the draft board you go, however. Players who are projected as sixth-round picks often fall out of the draft entirely.I looked at what happened to projected sixth-round picks since 2005, as according to the Scouts Inc. draft board. Specifically, I looked at defensive ends and outside linebackers, the two positions that Sam might play in the NFL. (That some scouts regard Sam as a “tweener” is one reason he may not be drafted highly.)There were 67 such players between 2005 and 2013. Of those, 37 players — 55 percent — were not drafted. Twenty-four others were drafted between the fifth and seventh rounds, while six were chosen in the fourth round or higher. Only about 10 percent were chosen in the sixth round exactly.Isn’t it a bit contradictory to describe prospects as sixth-round draft picks when they’re far more likely not to be drafted than to be chosen in the that round? There are more projected sixth-round picks than sixth-round slots. This year, for example, Scouts Inc. lists 71 players as sixth-round picks, but there are only 39 selections in that round (this includes a number of compensatory picks given to teams who lost free agents).The alternative, however, would imply a false precision in differentiating between sixth-round picks, seventh-round picks, guys just off the draft board and so forth. Picks late in the draft are intrinsically hard to project, because each team has different assessments of the players, and some teams prioritize need while others look for talent.But leave these semantics aside. There’s a more pressing issue in the case of Sam. Has his draft status been harmed by his public declaration of his sexuality?Sam’s ranking has fallen on some news media draft boards, including the one prepared by ESPN and Scouts Inc., since he came out as gay. Determining the cause and effect is harder. On the one hand, Sam got middling reviews at the NFL Scouting Combine in February. On the other hand, some NFL scouts and general managers have told members of the media that they’re worried Sam could be a “distraction.” In a league that has employed the likes of Aaron Hernandez, that could be cover for homophobia.But suppose that Sam were projected as a fourth-round pick, which is how he was often described at the time he came out. Would he be assured of being drafted?Not quite. Among the 70 defensive ends and outside linebackers projected by Scouts Inc. as fourth-round picks since 2005, 15 — 21 percent — weren’t drafted. Others were chosen as high as the second round.In other words, if Sam is not chosen in the draft, we won’t be able to say for sure it’s because of his sexuality. Draft projections are an inexact science, especially in the late stages of the process. (If Sam is neither drafted nor signed as a free agent, that would be a clearer signal that the league is evaluating him on something other than his football talent.)Personally, however, if the odds are something like 50-50 on Sam being drafted, I think I’d take his side of the bet. Why? A player only needs one team to draft him. A player like Sam who generates polarized opinions might have a better chance of being chosen in a late round by a team like the New England Patriots or the Seattle Seahawks than one who everyone agrees is mediocre. read more


first_imgJurgen Klopp admitted that he thought it was a “joke” when he was told of Barcelona’s shock elimination at the hands of AS Roma on TuesdayThe runaway La Liga leaders were shockingly defeated 3-0 at the Stadio Olimpico by a Roma side benefiting from Eusebio Di Francesco’s tactical masterstroke in using a 3-4-1-2 formation to leave Barcelona exposed.Klopp, speaking after Liverpool’s 2-1 win over Manchester City ensured their place in the semi-finals of the Champions League with a 5-1 aggregate victory, admitted that he initially did not believe it when he was told he could be next facing the Giallorossi.“I walked up the stairs and somebody told me [Roma had gone through] — I really thought it was a joke,” said the Liverpool coach, according to ESPN.divock origi, liverpoolReport: Origi cause Klopp injury concerns George Patchias – September 14, 2019 Divock Origi injury in today’s game against Newcastle is a cause for concern for Jurgen Klopp.Perhaps with one eye on Tuesday’s trip to Italy…“Not that I don’t respect Roma, the absolute opposite. They have a fantastic team — Edin Dzeko, wow. They lost Mo Salah and they are in the semis, that’s quite a big thing.“I cannot say anything about the game, I didn’t expect it before the game but I knew it was possible.“This competition is quite fair and I really think a normal final would have been Manchester City against Barcelona, and now they are both out.“But there will still be two other really strong teams in there plus Roma and us. We will see what happens but that’s not the thing I have to think about tonight.”last_img read more


first_imgJack Wilshere has admitted his frustration at missing out on England’s World Cup squad and believes that he “could have made a real impact” at RussiaThe midfielder was a notable absentee in Gareth Southgate’s final 23-man team for next month’s tournament, despite having been a regular at Arsenal this season.After struggling with injuries over the past few seasons. Wilshere has made 38 appearances in all competitions for the Gunners and was hopeful of being a part of Southgate’s plans.However, in the 26-year-old was forced to leave the England camp in the previous international break in February with an injury and evidently failed to convince the boss that he was ready for Russia.Jadon SanchoMerson believes Arsenal should sign Sancho Manuel R. Medina – September 14, 2019 Borussia Dortmund winger Jadon Sancho might be the perfect player to play for the Gunners, according to former England international Paul Merson.“Think it’s about time I had my say…,” Wilshere wrote on Twitter.“It goes without saying that I’m naturally incredibly disappointed to have been left out of the England squad for the World Cup. I’ve felt fit, sharp and strong all season and believe I should be in the squad!“And given the chance, I could have made a real impact.“However, I have to respect the manager’s decision and would like to wish the whole squad all the very best for the tournament. I will always be an England fan and will be supporting the boys with the rest of the nation.”last_img read more


first_imgThe new Rossoneri CEO Ivan Gazidis has arrived in Italy after ten years in the English Premier League with ArsenalIvan Gazidis spent ten years with Arsenal in the English Premier League as an executive.Now he has arrived in Italy to be the new AC Milan CEO.“It’s a great honor to have been chosen to lead AC Milan into a new era as its chief executive,” he told Gianluca Di Marzio.Cristiano Ronaldo, JuventusSerie A Betting: Match-day 3 Stuart Heath – September 14, 2019 Considering there is a number of perfect starts so early in the Serie A season, as well as a few surprisingly not-so perfect ones….“I’d like to assure the clubs millions of fans all over the world that I will work with my heart and soul to do the very best job that I can.”“To achieve what we all want for this great football club, the hard work will start now and it will require teamwork both on and off the pitch,” he added.“I’m extremely excited about the opportunities ahead, and although the journey will be challenging, I’m confident that together, we can bring AC Milan back to where it belongs. Forza Milan.”last_img read more


first_imgThe Sterling Highway is now open while the Skilak Lake Road remains closed. Construction will resume on the highway and pilot cars and flaggers will be used in these areas. Continue to drive with caution in the fire area. Minimal fire activity with isolated pockets of torching with some surface fire was reported on the fire line yesterday. Similar fire behavior is expected for today’s operations. Yesterday, a new fire progression map was made. Note, that the acreage on that map was not updated to our current 162,328. Facebook0TwitterEmailPrintFriendly分享Update 6:55am:Last night an infrared flight was flown. This flight indicated an increase in 149 acres. The Swan Lake Fire in now 162,328 acres. Original Post: 6am: The Swan Lake Fire remains at 162,179 acres with 719 personnel assigned, and at 29% containment. Firefighters are utilizing the overnight moisture to assist in mop up operations to further contain the fire. Dan Nelson, Incident Manager with the Kenai Peninsula Borough: “Make sure that you are ready to evacuate or take action as needed. However, this shows a good significant shift in fire behavior, and it  show that the crews have made good progress in getting those areas contained.”  Chainsaw and mop up operations are being conducted on the southwest side near Sterling to clean up tree debris along the fires edge from past wind events, so be aware when driving through the area. Travelers will see smoke and downed trees while passing through the fire area. Fire crews may also be working along the road cleaning up trees that have fallen so drivers are encouraged to drive safely and remain alert. The reduced fire activity allows firefighters to build line closer to the fire’s edge, south of Resurrection Pass Trail. The priority is to reduce potential fire spread toward Cooper Landing, if fire activity picks up again. Chipping operations will continue in the Cooper Landing area to reduce slash and larger debris material.A joint community meeting was held in both Sterling and Cooper Landing last night to update the  residents on the current status of the fire and the downgrade of evacuation status for both communities. All restrictions for outdoor activities due to air quality, and activity related travel between Sterling and Cooper Landing on Sterling Highway were removed effective on Tuesday for the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District. Cooper Landing School will reopen Wednesday on a normal schedule. In a letter from the district, thank you to everyone for your patience throughout the past 14 days while these restrictions were in place for student and staff safety.last_img read more