Golson's growth now a series-to-series process

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Golson's growth now a series-to-series process

SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- Everett Golson has shown his youth plenty of times this year, with that inexperience materializing into fumbles, interceptions, missed reads or bad decisions.

But he's also shown his ceiling, with that talent showing up in the form of a touchdown pass he threw to tight end Tyler Eifert on Saturday.

Down seven and facing a third-and-18 from Stanford's 24, Golson found Eifert just outside the end zone for a touchdown. He put the ball high, and Eifert skied over both Stanford defenders -- neither of whom could've got a hand on the ball thanks to Eifert's size and athleticism.

"It was a great read and a great throw," Eifert said. "It was a great play."

It's also one Golson's coach doesn't think he could've made earlier in the year. Brian Kelly said Tuesday Golson probably wouldn't have made the read to put enough air under the ball after only a few weeks of game experience.

"That's something that he has worked hard at developing," Kelly said. "He would have not made that throw in Week 1 or Week 2. He would have thrown a line drive level one ball and it would either have been deflected by the corner who was sinking or Tyler would not have gotten his hands on it."

But Kelly went on to go even further, saying Golson may not have even made that throw earlier in Saturday's game. Kelly referenced a Golson pass to T.J. Jones in the end zone that was broken up as something the young quarterback learned from, and showed that growth on the strike to Eifert.

"That learning curve is taking place, series by series," Kelly said. "That throw is something that he's developed into by being out there."

Despite Golson's growing pains, Kelly has maintained throughout the year the first-time starter will keep the No. 1 quarterback role. Rumbles of a quarterback controversy perhaps had some legs after Week 2, but now, it's Golson's gig. Tommy Rees is a safety net, and a luxury few teams attempting to develop a young quarterback have.

When Golson looks off his game, instead of continuing to throw him to the wolves, Notre Dame can insert a guy who has more experience reading defense and knows the ins and outs of the Irish offense. That system hasn't failed Notre Dame yet. But if it does, Kelly doesn't sound like someone who's going to change the course.

"That's the value and the benefit of him playing this year with four seasons of competition," Kelly explained of Golson, again referencing the touchdown to Eifert. "That's what I see and those are the things that keep me moving towards seeing the positive things.

"I know there's others -- he's got to take care of the football, he's got to set his feet. He plays sloppy at times but boy, he competed his butt off (against Stanford). I couldn't be more proud of the guy and the way he competed."

Honda Road Ahead: Bulls continue playoff push against Cavaliers, Hawks

Honda Road Ahead: Bulls continue playoff push against Cavaliers, Hawks

Mark Schanowski, Kendall Gill and Will Perdue break down the Bulls' upcoming schedule in the latest edition of the Bulls Road Ahead, presented by Chicagoland and NW Indiana Honda dealers.

TNT Bulls are back this week as the team heads into a crucial stretch. 

Currently, the Bulls sit half a game back of the Miami Heat for the eighth spot in the Eastern Conference playoff race, and with just eight games remaining on the schedule, each contest is essentially a must-win. 

So, yes, Thursday would be a great time for Jimmy Butler and company to summon their TNT alter ego. The Bulls have sealed 18 straight victories when playing on TNT Thursday, an improbable feat considering those games are usually reserved for two of the NBA's best. 

To continue that run, they'll have to down Lebron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers, who are also fighting for playoff positioning -- albeit at the top of the conference. Good thing the Bulls have a tendency to get up for big games. 

"The Bulls play up and down to their competition," Bulls Pregame and Postgame analyst Kendall Gill said. "They've been doing that the whole season." 

After Cleveland, the Bulls get set to battle another playoff squad, the Atlanta Hawks. 

Watch the video above to see Schanowski, Gill and Perdue break down the matchups. 

White Sox rookie Charlie Tilson's foot could keep him out until late May

White Sox rookie Charlie Tilson's foot could keep him out until late May

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Charlie Tilson will spend another three weeks in a walking boot and is likely out until at least the end of May.

The White Sox outfielder has been wearing the boot ever since he re-aggravated a stress reaction in his right foot earlier this month. Tilson is also rehabbing a torn hamstring that required surgery last August and ended his 2016 season early.

The White Sox later downed the San Francisco Giants 4-3 at Camelback Ranch. Catcher Roberto Pena had a two-out, two-run single in the ninth.

“It’s likely going to be a little bit of a process from there,” Tilson said. “One of those things you have to listen to your body. Like I said, it may take more time than I would like. But the ultimate goal is to be sustainable and get myself back to where I need to be.”

The White Sox top options for center field remain veteran Peter Bourjos and prospect Jacob May. They also could use Leury Garcia in center, manager Rick Renteria said.

Center field is one of several open roster battles with only three full days to go in camp. The team is off on Thursday before playing a pair of exhibition games at Milwaukee on Friday and Saturday.

“We’ll figure it out, and it could be in the next couple of days,” Renteria said. “We just have to allow it to play out and then make a determination at that point.”

The White Sox also have two spots up for grabs in the back of the bullpen. Michael Ynoa, who is out of options, non-roster invitees Anthony Swarzak, Cory Luebke and Matt Purke, and rookie Zack Burdi are vying for jobs. Rookie Juan Minaya is likely to start the season on the disabled list.

Rule 5 draftee Dylan Covey, who pitched 3 2/3 scoreless innings on Saturday, could figure into the team’s plans even more if Carlos Rodon starts the season on the disabled list. Covey is expected to start for the White Sox on Wednesday against the San Diego Padres.

Sunday’s starter James Shields said he’s ready for the regular season after throwing five innings. Shields allowed three earned runs and eight hits, walked three and struck out two.

He finished the Cactus League with a 3.45 ERA in 15 2/3 innings.

“Overall I felt good and I’m ready to move on,” Shields said. “These last couple outings I’ve been trying to work on my two-seam fastball. Today it was a little erratic, but overall felt pretty good.”

Nate Jones struck out two in a scoreless inning pitched. David Robertson, Blake Smith and Dan Jennings also pitched a scoreless inning.

Jose Abreu doubled and walked in four trips. Melky Cabrera singled twice in three trips.