Word on the Street: Pippen to be honored in bronze

Word on the Street: Pippen to be honored in bronze

Thursday, March 17, 2011
CSNChicago.com

Pippen to be honored in bronze

The Bulls will unveil a bronze bust of Hall of Famer Scottie Pippen at halftime of the Bulls' April 7 game against the Boston Celtics. The bust was created by Omri and Julie Rotblatt-Amrany, who also created the Michael Jordan statue outside the United Center. Pippen's bust will be permanently displayed inside the UC on the 100-level concourse by Gate 7.

"Words really can't express my feelings," Pippen said in a statement. "It's an unbelievable honor and truly amazing. It's something you dream of as a kid growing up, but you can never foresee those childhood fantasies becoming reality." (CSNChicago.com)

Mendenhall backs Peterson's slavery comments

Steelers running back, and ex-Illini star, Rashard Mendenhall tweeted his support for Adrian Peterson's analogy between the NFL's labor stance and slavery. Mendenhall said that "anyone with knowledge of the slave trade and the NFL" could see the parallel between them. Like Peterson, he received plenty of criticism for his stance, but took it in stride.

"If you look back and dissect what I said, I didn't say that the NFL was slavery, I said that they parallel each other," he tweeted. "Look up the word parallel. This means that they're not the same thing, but they run the same course. These paths will never cross, but they mirror each other." (USA Today)

Kings no more?

The decision has yet to be made as to where the Sacremento Kings franchise will call home next season. One thing, however, is certain; if they move to Anaheim, they will no longer be the Kings. Lawyers for the Maloof family, who own the franchise, filed federal trademark registrations for the names "Anaheim Royals," "Anaheim Royals of Southern California," "Orange County Royals," and "Los Angeles Royals."

Additionally, an unknown entity filed for the domain rights to "anaheimroyals.com" and "laroyals.com." (Sacramento Bee)

Fire sign midfielder

The Chicago Fire signed MLS SuperDraft pick Davis Paul on Thursday. Paul was selected in the third round, 51st overall, of the draft and will be added to the Fire's roster right away. The terms of his contract were not disclosed due to team and league policy.

"We've been pleased with Davis' skill, effort and attitude on-and-off the field," said Fire Technical Director Frank Klopas. "Davis is a creative player and a strong competitor with the ability to play up top and on the wing. (The Sports Network)

Buckeyes going back to College Football Playoff, will face Clemson in Fiesta Bowl

Buckeyes going back to College Football Playoff, will face Clemson in Fiesta Bowl

The College Football Playoff field is set, and for the second time in three years, the Ohio State Buckeyes will compete for a national championship.

The selection committee revealed the four-team field for this season's Playoff, with Ohio State coming at No. 3. The Buckeyes will battle No. 2 Clemson in the Fiesta Bowl. The other Playoff semifinal pits No. 1 Alabama against No. 4 Washington in the Peach Bowl.

While Ohio State has been considered one of the best teams in the country throughout the season, the Buckeyes' inclusion in the Playoff field is not without controversy, as they are the first team to play in the Playoff without winning their conference championship. But Ohio State had a sterling resume with three wins over top-10 teams: Michigan, Wisconsin and Oklahoma. The Buckeyes' lone loss came against a top-10 Penn State team.

The 2014 national champion, Ohio State returns to the Playoff after missing out last season. Big Ten champion Michigan State represented the conference last year, getting crushed by Alabama in the Cotton Bowl. Two years ago, the Buckeyes beat the Crimson Tide in the Sugar Bowl and then beat the Oregon Ducks in the national championship game.

Big Ten champion Penn State, which won the conference title game Saturday night with an instant-classic comeback victory over Wisconsin, ended up fifth and was left off the bracket. So too was sixth-ranked Michigan, which didn't compete for a conference championship but was ranked fifth in the final set of rankings prior to Sunday's bracket reveal. The Nittany Lions and Wolverines combined for five wins over top-10 teams this season.

There was plenty of conversation that red-hot Penn State could surge into the Playoff, just like Ohio State did two years ago. The Lions are riding a nine-game winning streak, defeated Ohio State earlier in the season and claimed the championship in what has been the hands-down best conference in college football this season. And boy did they impress Saturday night in their most recent showing, erasing a three-touchdown deficit to come back and beat Wisconsin.

Michigan, too, had a mighty compelling case to make. The Wolverines, owners of one of the best defenses in the country all season long, beat three top-10 teams during the regular season and took the No. 2 team in the country to double overtime just last weekend.

But in the end, we did not get the first Playoff field to feature two teams from the same conference. Penn State and Michigan will learn their bowl fates — likely going to New Year's Six bowl games — later Sunday.

Big Ten poll update: Penn State jumps Michigan in last pre-Playoff AP poll

Big Ten poll update: Penn State jumps Michigan in last pre-Playoff AP poll

The College Football Playoff selection committee will reveal the four-team Playoff field shortly, but in the AP poll, Big Ten champion Penn State did vault ahead of Michigan.

The Nittany Lions, fresh off their instant-classic comeback win in Saturday night's Big Ten title game, jumped up three spots, from No. 8 to No. 5, passing the Wolverines, who dropped from No. 5 to No. 6 with no game to play this weekend.

Who knows if that will be the thinking of the committee or if Penn State's performance Saturday was impressive enough to get it above Washington or Clemson and into the final four.

In the AP poll Sunday, Ohio State checked in at No. 2 behind No. 1 Alabama. The Buckeyes didn't play Saturday either, but those top two spots figure to be how the top two spots of the Playoff field will look. Clemson and Washington stayed the Nos. 3 and 4 teams in the poll, which seems to be a likely possibility in the Playoff, as well.

Wisconsin, defeated by Penn State on Saturday night, dropped just two spots from No. 6 to No. 8, jumped by Penn State and Oklahoma, which was victorious in its regular-season finale against Oklahoma State, claiming the Big 12 championship in the process.

Iowa moved up one spot from No. 22 to No. 21, while Nebraska dropped a spot from No. 23 to No. 24. Neither team played this weekend.