Word on the Street: Payton fifth in NFL top 100

Word on the Street: Payton fifth in NFL top 100

Friday, Nov. 5, 2010

Payton ranked fifth on NFL top 100
Walter Payton and Dick Butkus cracked the Top 10 of the NFL's list of its100 greatest players.

They are among eight former Bears players to make the list, which was released Thursday night. See the full list here. (NFL.com)
Bulls' Johnson headed to Charlotte?
In his second NBA season, Chicago Bulls forward James Johnson has come out of the gate averaging 4 points, 4.3 rebounds, 1.3 assists, and 12:41 minutes per game.

The word is that the 2009 first-round pick out of Wake Forest may be taking those numbers to the Charlotte Bobcats. Sources to the site have it that a possible trade involving Johnson "has emerged." (Yahoo! Sports)

Wrigley getting ready for NorthwesternIllinois football game

Mets clubhouse manager bet on baseball?

Mets clubhouse manager Charlie Samuels is under investigation by the NYPD and the Queens District Attorney's office for allegedly betting on baseball and other sports as part of an organized gambling ring, providing inside information and tips for friends who also placed bets on games and for using his Mets accounts to cover gambling debts, according to law-enforcement sources close to the probe into the longtime Mets employee. (NY Daily News)
Cubs' Ramirez will return in 2011
As he confirmed in September, Cubs third baseman Aramis Ramirez declined to exercise his opt-out clause on Thursday meaning he'll return to the team in 2011. On Wednesday, Cubs GM Jim Hendry said he expected the move. (ChicagoBreakingSports)

Cleveland tells LeBron what he should have done
The city of Cleveland has responded to LeBron James' Nike ad, showing that they are still bitter about his free agency decision.

Scheelhaase named Big Ten offensive player of the week

Nathan Scheelhaase was named Big Ten offensive player of the week and picked up the fourth freshman-of-the-week award of his eight-game career Monday.

The redshirt freshman quarterback from Kansas City had five career highs, including four touchdown passes and 118 rushing yards, in Illinois' 44-10 rout of Purdue. Scheelhaase, who completed 16 of 20 for 195 yards with no interceptions, also had career highs in completion percentage (80), total yards (313) and passing efficiency (227.9), the sixth-best single-game rating by an Illinois quarterback.

"He grew up today,'' said offensive coordinator Paul Petrino, who praised the strides Scheelhaase made in recognizing defensive schemes and audibling Illinois into favorable plays.

"I definitely felt that way, Scheelhaase said, echoing Petrino's comment. "With their blitzes and the things they did, I was able to get us into the right things. We changed a lot of protections, even on running plays.''

Scheelhaase completed passes to 11 different players.

"The game is slowing down for him,'' coach Ron Zook said. "I don't think it's anywhere near where it's going to be, but he really works at learning from his mistakes. The more he sees, the more he does, the more he learns, the more it's going to become a reaction." (Chicago Sun-Times)

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Will Bears actually trade Alshon Jeffery?


SportsTalk Live Podcast: Will Bears actually trade Alshon Jeffery?

Brian Hedger (nhl.com), Teddy Greenstein (Chicago Tribune) and Rich Campbell (Chicago Tribune) join Chuck Garfien on the panel.

The Bears reluctantly go back to Jay Cutler as the starter. Meanwhile, can the Bears actually trade Alshon Jeffery?

The guys give their predictions for the Bulls season, Hedger dissects the Blackhawks penalty kill problems and Teddy explains why Michigan will win the Big Ten.

Listen to the SportsTalk Live Podcast below:

Could Cubs start Kyle Schwarber in World Series game at Wrigley Field?

Could Cubs start Kyle Schwarber in World Series game at Wrigley Field?

CLEVELAND — “No, not right now,” Kyle Schwarber said without hesitation when asked if playing the outfield would be a possibility. The Cubs had just lost their first World Series game in 71 years, with Schwarber showing a minimal amount of rust for someone who hadn’t seen big-league action in more than six months.

Hitting with a brace wrapped around his surgically repaired left knee, Schwarber blasted a double off Cy Young Award winner Corey Kluber and split his matchups against nasty lefty reliever Andrew Miller (walk/strikeout) during Tuesday’s 6-0 loss to the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field.

Schwarber keeps smashing all expectations, returning from a gruesome outfield collision that was supposed to keep him sidelined until winter ball — and then a return to the 2017 Opening Day lineup if everything went smoothly.

Manager Joe Maddon promised reporters that they would be surprised by how well Schwarber runs now. Schwarber estimated that video from his Arizona Fall League tune-up represented “about 50 percent” of what he could actually do.

So when the World Series shifts on Friday to Wrigley Field — where the designated hitter will no longer be an option — could the Cubs start Schwarber in the outfield?

[SHOP: Buy a "Try Not to Suck" shirt with proceeds benefiting Joe Maddon's Respect 90 Foundation & other Cubs Charities]

“I have no idea,” Maddon said before Wednesday’s Game 2. “I just want to keep an open mind. But I could keep as open of a mind as I possibly can — it’s up to the doctors to say what he can and cannot do. I would imagine that him playing and coming in today feeling normal is a positive.

“(With) his play tonight — and then we have a day off tomorrow — we can probably reevaluate. I have no proprietary information regarding what a doctor really thinks about this.

“So if it’s brought up to us, and the doc thinks he can ... but I’ve not even asked that question yet to the doctor. We were just trying to get one thing done at a time.”

The Cubs will at least have Schwarber looming as a dangerous pinch-hitter who generated five home runs and a 1.308 OPS during last year’s playoffs. Everything from that clutch performance to his middle-linebacker build to his show-choir video from high school endeared him to Cubs fans.

Just showing Schwarber’s face on the Wrigley Field video board would get a reaction during a random game in the regular season, when he essentially acted like a cheerleader in the dugout. Now imagine him walking up to home plate in the World Series.

“The fans are going to go berserk,” Maddon said. “Our fans really appreciate how hard he worked to get back for this moment. Not everybody would have done that. That’s a tough injury to come back from — really tough — and to accelerate his recovery as much as he (did) speaks to him and the training staff. And I think our fans will appreciate that.”