Pryor still waiting on decision from NFL on supplemental draft

OSU quarterback Terrelle Pryor. (Photo by Kyle Robertson)
By AJ Mazzolini

Former Ohio State quarterback Terrelle Pryor's eligibility for the NFL supplemental draft might be in doubt as the league continues to review the player's application. But Pryor's unique circumstances at OSU should quell all questions surrounding his eligibility, according to his attorney, Larry James.

James said the quarterback should be allowed to enter the supplemental draft because an NCAA investigation - completed after the Jan. 15 deadline for underclassmen to declare for the annual NFL draft - determined that he would not have been allowed to play in any games in the 2011 season.

"There was just no way that the circumstances with the review would have allowed him to compete in the games past the five he was already suspended," James said. "When (Pryor) signed with an agent, that was a straight-up sign, not to avoid the original draft," James said. "That is simply not the case."

The Crew's Julius James, right, heads the ball against the Timbers. (AP photo)
By AJ Mazzolini
Special to The Oregonian

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- The Portland Timbers will have to wait a little longer for road win No.2.

After winning for the first time on the road this season last Saturday in Chicago, the Timbers fell to the Columbus Crew 1-0 after Columbus midfielder Eddie Gaven knocked in a rebound in the 79th minute last night at Columbus Crew Stadium.

With the score still square at 0-0, the Crew's Robbie Rogers sent a cross from the left side of the field into the box and into traffic. Crew forward Tommy Heinemann corralled the bouncing ball and sent a shot at the net. The ball deflected off the left post past a diving goalie Troy Perkins.

On the rebound, Gaven reached out his right foot while in midair and spiked the ball past several defenders -- and through some of his own players -- into the chest of Portland defender Futty Danso. The ball rolled off Danso and into the net.

Initially ruled an own goal, the call was later overturned and Gaven was awarded his third goal of the year.

Spectators celebrate a birdie on hole 13. (Photo by Neil C. Lauron)
By AJ Mazzolini
The Columbus Dispatch

Close to 100 people sipped frothing beers that quickly disappeared on the hot day. Most of them sat in the shade of a massive tent filled with cooling fans, televisions and a full-service bar.

Down a steep slope from the loungers, Daniel Chopra had just hit his tee shot into a bunker in front of the green at the par-3 No. 13 at Ohio State's Scarlet Course.

The people didn't like that.

"Come on," one spectator sighed from the safety of the shade. "We need a birdie."

Groans turned to cheers when Chopra's chip shot out of the sand rolled perfectly into the cup. He made the birdie.

"All right! Way to go Daniel!" a voice yelled from the crowd. Spectators left their seats and headed to the bar for $1 beers. The timer on the wall counted down from 13 minutes.

That is the scene that overlooks the hole during the Nationwide Children's Hospital Invitational, where a golfer's birdie means fans drink half-price beer for 13 minutes on the tournament's "party hole."

By AJ Mazzolini

Inside the Westerville North High School cafeteria, students milled around booths and tables looking for after-school clubs to join. Club representatives handed out fliers with information on their organizations and activities.

That's where Matt Chase first met Chris Yeager more than six years ago.

Yeager was a freshman at the school and Chase was looking for kids to join the Westerville Crew, the rowing club he started in 1995. Yeager was tall, and stocky if not overweight, an excellent starting point for a rower, Chase thought.

Chase's intuition proved accurate. Recruitment to the University of California followed Yeager's successful four years with the high-school club. His newest rowing venture is representing the United States in the Under-23 world rowing championships this week in Amsterdam.

Yeager, a 6-foot-6 soon-to-be senior at California, will man the No. 2 seat for the United States' eight-man boat when action kicks off at the four-day championship on Thursday. The 2,000-meter race will be held at Amsterdam's Bosbaan rowing course.

Key additions Carter, Wisniewski ready to help turn around team

Jeff Carter, left, and James Wisniewski flank GM Scott Howson during their introductory news conference . (Photos by Fred Squillante)
By AJ Mazzolini

Finding the missing pieces for a team that has been puzzling offensively and defensively for years was the topic when the Blue Jackets introduced Jeff Carter and James Wisniewski yesterday in Nationwide Arena.

The team has struggled for most of its 10-year existence without a No.1 center or a top-notch scoring defenseman. This offseason, general manager Scott Howson said, the Jackets went a long way toward remedying those issues by trading for Carter, a 26-year-old center, and for the rights to Wisniewski, a 27-year-old defenseman.

"We had two main priorities: acquire a top center and improve our defense," Howson said. "If you look at all the top teams in the NHL, all the strong contenders, they're all strong down the middle. We feel now we have a chance to be very strong down the middle."
Indians third baseman Lonnie Chisenhall. (AP photo)
By AJ Mazzolini

Lonnie Chisenhall sat at home with his wife, Meredith, in late June after a Clippers game, trying to forget a costly ninth-inning error he'd committed in a loss just hours before.

A rerun of Lost was playing on the television as the couple lounged on their couch around midnight.

Then Chisenhall got the call from Clippers manager Mike Sarbaugh.

The 22-year-old third baseman was headed to the major leagues, Sarbaugh told him, after a promotion to the Cleveland Indians. He needed to be on a plane the next morning for Phoenix, where the Indians were playing the Arizona Diamondbacks.

He forgot all about the error.

"It was a big panic to try to get my bags all packed and make sure I had everything I needed," Chisenhall said. "I didn't sleep at all that night. I rolled around and waited for about 5 a.m. so I could just get up and get to the airport."

By AJ Mazzolini

Paul Leitch and his fiancee have an ongoing joke: If their house were burning down, the first thing he'd grab on his way out would be his collection of Chris Leitch jerseys.

"I've got the Red Bulls one, the MetroStars one and the Crew one," Paul said, listing his older brother's former Major League Soccer teams.

But Paul said he still doesn't have one of Chris' San Jose Earthquakes jerseys. He likes to hold out for the authentic "game-worn type" that Chris can eventually get for him.

Chris, a central Ohio native, is in town with the rest of the Earthquakes for a game tonight against the Crew. Paul will be there sans jersey but decked out in everything else San Jose. He expects to be part of a small San Jose cheering section, and more specifically, the Chris Leitch cheering section.
Lauren Grogan of Columbus in the Columbus Junior tourney. (AJGA photo)
AJGA tournaments let high schoolers impress college coaches

By AJ Mazzolini

Maria Mancini entered in two American Junior Golf Association tournaments this summer to see how she could compete against other top high-school golfers from Ohio and across the country.

It turns out, someone was watching her, too.

During the Cleveland Junior Open in June, Mancini finished seventh, impressing herself and Indiana coach Clint Wallman, who offered her a scholarship after she graduates in 2012.


All-Star Tribute

Addie Joss benefit game
Back row, left to right: Bobby Wallace, Frank Baker, Joe Wood, Walter Johnson, Hal Chase, Clyde Milan, Russell Ford and Eddie Collins. Front row: Germany Schaefer, Tris Speaker, Sam Crawford, Jimmy McAleer, Ty Cobb, Gabby Street and Paddy Livingston.

By AJ Mazzolini

The grandstands at Cleveland's League Park were crowded with fans eager to watch a baseball game that had no effect on the American League standings.

Cy Young was pitching for the Cleveland Naps, tasked with facing many of the greatest hitters of the era, men with names like Tris Speaker and Ty Cobb and Frank "Home Run" Baker.

Yet the fans present on July 24, 1911, weren't interested in the outcome; the score was meaningless. What mattered was that they were there, 15,270 of them, to pay honor to a fallen hero and raise money for his widow and children.

On that day, the greatest arrangement of ball players gathered for a benefit game, and the precursor to today's All-Star Game.

They gathered for Addie Joss.
As reported in today's Columbus Dispatch, Ohio State will vacate its football season as part of a self-imposed punishment for major NCAA infractions. The Buckeyes won 12 games, a share of the 2010 Big 10 championship and the Sugar Bowl.

In a response submitted today to the NCAA, Ohio State admits allegations that then-coach Jim Tressel lied and allowed his ineligible players to compete and failing to report that they had sold OSU-issued memorabilia to a tattoo-parlor owner.

Ohio State concedes major violations of NCAA regulations but says it should not face harsher punishment, because no OSU official other than Tressel was aware of player violations, according to the response that was obtained by The Dispatch.