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Archive for April 27th, 2020

Matt Kenseth comes out of retirement to drive #42 Chevy Camaro for Chip Ganassi Racing

 

CONCORD, N.C. (Apr. 27, 2020) – Chip Ganassi Racing announces today that when the NASCAR Cup Series returns to the track for the remainder of the 2020 season, Matt Kenseth will be behind the wheel of the No. 42 Chevrolet Camaro. Kenseth, the former Cup Series Champion and two-time Daytona 500 Champion, most recently competed full-time at NASCAR’s highest level in 2017, where he finished seventh in the points and won the second to last race of the season at Phoenix Raceway.

Matt Kenseth at Watkns Glen International in 2018 photo By Zach Catanzareti, CC BY-SA 2.0, https commons.wikimedia.org

 

The Wisconsin native is a 39-time Cup Series winner and will join a talented group on the No. 42 team, which entered the 2020 season following a best-ever sixth place finish in the 2019 point standings, a fourth consecutive trip to the playoffs, and a playoff race win at Dover International Speedway. With a newly designed Chevrolet Camaro for the 2020 season, the No. 42 team started the year strong, with three top-10 finishes in the first four races.

NOTES OF INTEREST:

 

  • Running Up Front – With 18 years of experience in the Cup Series, Kenseth has consistently run near the front, averaging 10 top-five and just over 18 top-10 finishes a year in his 18 full-time seasons behind the wheel. During his career, Kenseth posted at least one win in all but four seasons and made the playoffs in all but one season in which he was eligible, finishing his full-time career with eight consecutive appearances.

 

  • A Winning Attitude: Overall, the former Cup Champion, has 39 Cup wins including the Daytona 500 twice, the Coke 600, the Southern 500 and the All-Star race. He has 181 top-5s and has finished in the top-10 in points in 13 of his 18 seasons. When Kenseth scored his first Dayton 500 victory in 2009, he became only the fifth driver in NASCAR history to win a Cup Series Championship, the Rookie of the Year Award and the Daytona 500 — joining Hall of Famers Dale Earnhardt, Jeff Gordon, David Pearson, and Richard Petty.

 

  • Return to Team Chevy: While this marks the first time Kenseth will race with Team Chevy in the Cup Series, he is no stranger to the manufacturer. Kenseth began his racing career in 1988 in a Camaro and made his debut in the NASCAR Southeast Series in 1994 behind the wheel of a Chevrolet, and continued racing Chevrolet’s in the Xfinity Series through the 2001 season.

 

QUOTEBOARD:

 

  • Chip Ganassi, Owner, Chip Ganassi Racing: “I have always said that when we have to fill a driver spot, that I owe it to our team, our partners and our fans to put the best available driver in the car. We are doing exactly that with Matt. Throughout my time in NASCAR, I have always admired the way Matt Kenseth raced. He has proven to be a consistent winner, strong competitor, and respectful driver, and I’m glad we are able to add another NASCAR champion to the team for the remainder of this season.”

 

  • Matt Kenseth, Driver No. 42 Chevrolet Camaro: “This was an unexpected opportunity for sure. I can’t say racing was even on my radar two weeks ago. After spending some time thinking about it and all the unique circumstances surrounding all of us right now, it just seemed the timing and the opportunity was perfect to come back. I know I have a lot of work ahead of me to get up to speed in a relatively short period of time, but I’m looking forward to the challenge. I’m excited to work with Kurt again and to meet all my new CGR team members, and I’m really looking forward to getting back in a Chevrolet. In 1988, I started my career in a Camaro and I can’t wait to finally race a Chevy in the Cup Series. I also need to thank Chip and all his partners for this opportunity. Hopefully we will be on the track soon.”

 

 

About Chip Ganassi Racing:

Chip Ganassi has been a fixture in the auto racing industry for over 30 years and is considered one of the most successful as well as innovative owners the sport has anywhere in the world. Today his teams include three cars in the NTT IndyCar Series and two cars in the NASCAR Cup Series. Overall his teams have 19 championships and over 220 victories, including four Indianapolis 500s, a Daytona 500, a Brickyard 400, eight Rolex 24 At Daytonas, the 12 Hours of Sebring and the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Ganassi boasts state-of-the-art race shop facilities in Indianapolis and Concord, N.C., with a corporate office in Pittsburgh, Pa.

 

For more information log onto www.chipganassiracing.com

 

PRESS RELEASE WRITTEN BY Chip Ganassi Racing Media Contact, Davis Shaefer; COURTESY NASCARmedia.com

 

NFL announces that Four International Players to be added to 2020 Rosters

 

Four teams will carry an additional overseas player on their practice squads in 2020 as part of the International Player Pathway program, the NFL announced today.

ISAAC ALARCON, a former Mexican college football national champion, will join the Dallas Cowboys. DAVID BADA, a former defensive end for the Schwabisch Hall Unicorns of the German Football League, will join the Washington Redskins. Australian MATT LEO, who played football for the Iowa State Cyclones, will join the Philadelphia Eagles and former Austrian U19 national team running back SANDRO PLATZGUMMER will join the New York Giants.

The four NFC East clubs will carry these overseas players on their roster until the end of training camp. At that time, the players are eligible for an international player practice squad exemption, granting the team an extra practice squad member that is ineligible to be activated during the 2020 season.

The NFC East was chosen to receive these players in a random draw.

After the NFL conducted an International Combine in Germany last October, the players received additional training and development alongside NFL players and draft hopefuls in Florida at IMG Academy this winter.

The International Player Pathway Program was instituted in 2017 and aims to provide international athletes the opportunity to compete at the NFL level, improve their skills and ultimately earn a spot on an NFL roster.

Three players that participated in the program in 2019 – Jakob Johnson (New England Patriots), Durval Queiroz Neto (Miami Dolphins) and Christian Wade (Buffalo Bills) – will return to their AFC East teams for the upcoming season.

The new players taking part in the 2020 International Player Pathway Program:

ISAAC ALARCON, Offensive Tackle, (Mexico) – Dallas Cowboys

Represented Mexico at the U19 World Championships facing Team USA, Canada and Japan. Attended ITESM Monterrey, where he saw action at both right and left tackle. While at the university, he won the 2019 national championship and was selected to the CONADEIP all-star team.​

DAVID BADA, Defensive End, (Germany) – Washington Redskins

Competed in the German Football League’s top division for the Schwabisch Hall Unicorns. Had previously played for the Ingolstadt Dukes, where he developed as a pass rusher.

MATT LEO, Defensive End, (Australia) – Philadelphia Eagles

Played rugby while growing up in Australia. Earned a scholarship to Arizona Western College, then transferred to Iowa State. Was redshirted for one year and finished his eligibility by playing for two years as a defensive end. In 2019, Leo played in all 13 game, posting 14 tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss and one sack. A liberal studies major, he was First-Team Academic All-Big 12 Conference in 2019.

SANDRO PLATZGUMMER, Running Back, (Austria) – New York Giants

Participated in youth football leagues while growing up in Austria. Represented Austria on their U19 team and competed on the senior team in the 2018 European Championships. In 2019, Platzgummer played running back for the Swarco Raiders Tirol of the Austrian Football League with nearly 1000 total yards and 15 total touchdowns.

The returning participants from the 2019 International Player Pathway Program:

JAKOB JOHNSON, Fullback, (Germany) – New England Patriots

Johnson made his NFL debut during the 2019 season in a Week 3 win against the New York Jets.  His first NFL start came the following week in Buffalo where he contributed as a lead blocker.  And in Week 5 he made his first career reception for five yards against the Washington Redskins. Originally assigned to the Patriots through the International Pathway Program, the Patriots elected to forgo that option and make him a regular member of their 10-man practice squad, which gave them the option of promoting him to their active roster.  Prior to the NFL, Johnson played for the Stuttgart Scorpions of the German Football League before moving to Jacksonville where he played one season of high school football in the United States.  He was then recruited by the University of Tennessee.

DURVAL QUEIROZ NETO, Defensive Tackle, (Brazil) – Miami Dolphins

Played domestically in Brazil for the past four seasons on the two best teams in Brazil. A judo champion prior to playing football, he is known for his tremendous athletic ability and a willingness to learn. Spent the 2019 season on the Miami Dolphins’ practice squad.

CHRISTIAN WADE, Running Back/Kick Returner, (England) – Buffalo Bills

Represented the English National Rugby Team at the U16, U18, U20 and senior levels. Was selected to the British and Irish Lions squad, the highest honor for a rugby player. His 82 Premiership Rugby tries (touchdowns) ranks third on the league’s all-time list.  A projected running back, he has outstanding athletic ability and a versatile skill set. Spent the 2019 season on the Buffalo Bills’ practice squad. Wade raised eyebrows during the 2019 preseason with two long runs, showcasing his superior speed.

Notable International Player Pathway Program Participants Currently on NFL Rosters:

JORDAN MAILATA, Tackle (Australia) – Philadelphia Eagles

The 2018 NFL Draft culminated an exciting time for Mailata, a past program participant.  The Samoan-born Australian former professional rugby league player for the South Sydney Rabbitohs was drafted in the seventh round by the Philadelphia Eagles (thereby making him ineligible for the International Player Pathway Program).  Converted to football full-time early in 2018, the 6-8, 350-pounder impressed NFL scouts at various workouts with his strength, footwork and athleticism.  He was the youngest players on the Eagles roster in 2018 and remains with the team.

EFE OBADA, Defensive End (UK) – Carolina Panthers

Obada become the first player from the NFL International Pathway program to make a 53-man roster in 2018.  He played his first regular season game in Week 3 against the Cincinnati Bengals, earning NFC Defensive Player of the Week honors for his one-sack, one-interception performance. In 2019, Obada posted a career-best 24 tackles and played in all 16 of the Panthers’ games, including their 2019 International Series game in London, where he was named an honorary captain. Obada signed a one-year contract extension with the Panthers on January 6, 2020.  Obada was raised in London after arriving from the Netherlands at age 10.  He signed as a free agent for the Dallas Cowboys in 2015 after playing only five games of amateur football with the London Warriors. He played in the preseason for the Cowboys and spent part of the 2015 season on the club’s practice squad. He has since had spells on the rosters of the Kansas City Chiefs and Atlanta Falcons before joining the Carolina Panthers practice squad as part of the 2017 International Player Pathway Program.

 

PRESS RELEASE WRITTEN BY Sarah Patti; COURTESY NFLmedia.com

Daily Almanac for Monday, April 27, 2020

April Birthstone is the Diamond 2014 photo by Nicolas Perrault III, CC BY 1.0, https commons.wikimedia.org

Every Year

1520s

1790s

1820s

1860s

1880s

1890s

1900s

1920s

1930s

1940s

1950s

1960s

1970s

1980s

2000s

2010s

 

DAILY ALMANAC WRITTEN BY & COURTESY OF www.almanac.com

 

Dayton Flyers TE Adam Trautman picked in NFL Draft by New Orleans Saints

Adam Trautman 84 in action against Jacksonville (courtesy UD Athletics)

Drafted In The Third Round

BRONXVILLE, N.Y. – All-American tight end Adam Trautman made University of Dayton football history Friday night when he became UD’s first non-scholarship player to be selected in the NFL draft.

 

Trautman was picked by the New Orleans Saints in the third round (105th overall selection).

 

Trautman, a 6-foot-6, 253 pound redshirt senior from Williamsburg, Mich., was the first Flyer chosen since the Seattle Seahawks selected offensive tackle Bill Westbeld in the 11th round of the 1977 draft.  Dayton completed the transition from scholarship to non-scholarship football to be eligible for the NCAA Division III playoffs the next season, and remained in Division III for 15 years.  Then, a change in NCAA regulations led to the creation of the Division I non-scholarship Pioneer Football League, and UD’s return to Division I football.

 

Trautman is only the third Flyer chosen as high as the third round, and is the highest NFL draft pick from UD since 1972, when Gary Kosins was picked in the third round (77th overall) by the Miami Dolphins.  Former Flyer Emil Karas was also picked in the third round, when the Washington Redskins took him with the 28th overall selection in the 1959 draft.

 

He is also the highest draft choice in the 27-year history of the Pioneer Football League.  The PFL’s prior top draft choice was San Diego’s Josh Johnson in the fifth round (160th overall) of the 2008 NFL draft.

 

“We’ve had a lot of good football players in my time here,” Flyer head coach Rick Chamberlin said.  “Young men come to the University of Dayton to get a great education and play for a winning football program.  But in my 45 years at UD as a player, assistant coach and head coach, we’ve never had anyone with the potential to make an impact at the next level that Adam Trautman has.

 

“The University gave Adam every opportunity fulfill his dreams with our facilities, support and the coaching in our program, but make no mistake about it – all credit goes to Adam for his commitment and the sacrifices he has made to take advantage of his God-given abilities and put him in this position.”

 

Trautman was named an All-American by all six major FCS All-America programs.  He was a finalist for the STATS FCS Walter Payton Award, which goes annually to the top offensive player in FCS football.  He was the only tight end on the Payton Award list.

 

Overlooked because of his Elk Rapids High School’s small size (there were 18 players on the team in his junior season, and 21 in his senior season), he came to Dayton as a record-setting quarterback.  He redshirted his freshman season, and moved from quarterback to tight end early in preseason camp that year.  Even though the first pass he ever caught in a game was not until his first college game, Trautman became the Flyers’ all-time leading receiver (178 catches, 2,295 yards, 31 TD).

 

The Flyer co-captain was UD’s Most Valuable Player and the Pioneer Football League Offensive Player of the Year this season.  He is the first tight end in PFL history to be named the league’s top offensive player.  (He is actually believed to be the first of any FCS league’s offensive player of the year, but research could not be completed.)

 

In 2019, he was the FCS’s top-rated tight end in receiving touchdowns (14), receptions (6.4 per game), receiving yards (916) and scoring (7.8 points per game). Overall, he was ranked among the FCS’s Top 50 in each of those categories, including third in the nation in receiving touchdowns.  He also ranked first or second in the PFL in each of the receiver categories.

 

Trautman finished his Dayton career with the school record for receptions in a season (70), TD catches in a season (14), career receptions (178) and career touchdown catches (31). He also set the Flyer mark for TD catches in a game when he caught four this season against Jacksonville.

 

His body of work earned him invitations to the Senior Bowl and NFL Combine, and his performances there solidified his draft position.  A total of 98 scouts visited campus to scout Trautman in 2019.  Every NFL team was represented, and most came multiple times.

 

Trautman led the Flyers to an 8-3 record in 2019.  UD finished tied for second in the PFL with a 6-2 league mark.

 

He earned his Electrical Engineering degree in December.

 

PRESS RELEASE WRITTEN BY Doug Hauschild; COURTESY DAYTON MEDIA RELATIONS


OHSAA announces Partnership with Raising Cane’s of Ohio

News Release – Ohio High School Athletic Association

Jerry Snodgrass, Executive Director

 

www.OHSAA.org |  twitter.com/OHSAASports |  facebook.com/OHSAASports

 

Portion of sales on April 30 from 4 p.m. to close will help support OHSAA programs for student-athletes

 

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Restaurant chain Raising Cane’s Ohio has entered into a partnership with the Ohio High School Athletic Association to provide funding for student-athlete scholarship programs and support for postseason tournaments. With 36 locations across Ohio, Raising Cane’s is well known for its chicken finger meals and customer satisfaction.

 

The three-year partnership will kick off Thursday, April 30, when all Raising Cane’s restaurants across Ohio will donate 15 percent of sales from 4 p.m. to close to the OHSAA. All sales will be made at the drive-thru due to the current coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic that cancelled the OHSAA’s winter state tournaments of wrestling, ice hockey and basketball along with all spring sports.

 

The annual OHSAA scholar-athlete scholarship program, which annually provides more than $175,000 to college-bound seniors, had to be cancelled this spring due in part to the OHSAA’s lack of revenue from the tournaments.

 

“We cannot begin to thank Raising Cane’s enough for stepping up during these unprecedented times to help give back to the student-athletes across Ohio,” said Jerry Snodgrass, executive director of the OHSAA. “Our mission at the OHSAA begins with ‘to serve’ and we will be able to continue to do just that with partners like Raising Cane’s, who are committed to both education and active lifestyles. We get to see firsthand how those two directly impact communities, schools and students across Ohio. We’re really excited to kick off this three-year partnership and forge what will be a special effort to positively impact students statewide.”

 

Currently Raising Canes operates in Central, Northeast and Southwest Ohio.

 

“Active lifestyle and education are two of our pillars of community involvement, when we found out various programming and scholarships could be lessened or taken away due to cancellations of championships from the COVID-19 pandemic, we immediately reached out to the OHSAA to see how we could help,” said Matt Salts, director of marketing at Raising Cane’s Ohio. “We’re committed to team up with the OHSAA to help provide support for the next three years to help keep these key programs available to athletes across the state of Ohio.”

 

WHAT: Raising Cane’s Ohio and the OHSAA partnership to provide funding for student-athletes.

WHERE: All Raising Cane’s locations in Ohio, a full list of Ohio Raising Cane’s locations can be found here.

WHEN: Thursday, April 30, 2020.

ABOUT RAISING CANE’S
Founded by Todd Graves in 1996 in Baton Rouge, La., RAISING CANE’S CHICKEN FINGERS has more than 420 restaurants in 24 states, Bahrain, Kuwait, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates with multiple new restaurants under construction. The company has ONE LOVE®—quality chicken finger meals—and is continually recognized for its unique business model and customer satisfaction. Raising Cane’s vision is to have restaurants all over the world and be the brand for quality chicken finger meals, a great crew, cool culture and active community involvement. More information is available at raisingcanes.com.

 

PRESS RELEASE WRITTEN BY Raising Cane’s Contact – Matt Salts; OHSAA Contact – Tim Stried; COURTESY OHSAA COMMUNICATIONS

 

 

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