The Michigan State football travel guide: Indiana University


After surviving a weekend in Piscataway, the Michigan State Spartans are back on the road, taking on the Indiana Hoosiers down in Bloomington, Indiana.

If you are heading down to southern Indiana to catch the game, there are plenty of restaurants, bars and attractions on and near the campus of Indiana University to check out.

The Campus

Indiana University is one of the most historic universities in the Big Ten. Founded in 1820, Indiana is the third oldest in the conference, behind only the University of Rutgers and the University of Michigan. There are plenty of iconic landmarks throughout the more than 200-year-old campus.

Of course, for those making the trek down to the Hoosier state this weekend, Memorial Stadium, better known as “The Rock,” will be a central aspect of the trip. Don’t forget to take a peak at the prow of the USS Indiana, a former battleship of the U.S. Navy, which sits just outside the stadium.

It might be a good idea to park a bit farther than normal and stroll around Indiana’s campus on the way to the game.

“Just walk around,” Patrick Felts, a student at Indiana and the multimedia football reporter at the Indiana Daily Student, said. “I might be biased, but I don’t think there’s a more beautiful campus on the face of the earth.”

The most iconic start to a walk through Indiana’s campus starts at the Sample Gates, which guard the entrance to the oldest part of the university. It is a classic spot to snap photos for visitors and students alike. Right around the corner gates is Dunn Woods, a 20-acre patch of land with winding brick pathways cutting through forestry. The Rose Well House, a limestone gazebo, is a campus landmark found in Dunn Woods.

There is plenty of unique architecture found throughout the campus. Eskenazi Museum of Art, — designed by the same architect that designed the Louvre in Paris, I.M. Pei — Lilly Library and Beck Chapel are just a few of the standouts on the Bloomington campus.

Bloomington

Indiana University teaches more than 80 languages — perhaps that is why Bloomington has such a diverse representation of cuisine from around the world.

Eighteen countries are represented by over 75 international restaurants throughout Bloomington, with anything from Turkish to Thai clustered mostly on 4th street.

Also, pro tip from Felts: if you find yourself out on the town during or after a night at the bars and have a craving for sushi or teriyaki, Z & C Teriyaki & Sushi has you covered.

If you are looking for a staple of Bloomington’s pizza scene, Mother Bear’s Pizza is a local favorite.

“It is pretty much the iconic Indiana restaurant,” Felts said.

Those looking to consume their daily calories in the form of alcohol can find plenty of bars up and down the streets of Kirkwood Ave., the central road and artery of activity in Bloomington. Kilroy’s is one of the most popular bars in Bloomington, especially among the student base, Felts said.

Nick’s English Hut is a more family friendly bar that specializes in both booze and food, with Indiana apparel and pictures crowding the walls and creating a real college eatery experience. The bar is also known for “sink the biz,” a drinking game that includes a bucket of beer and a floating cup.

Surrounding the city are plenty of parks and forests for those looking to get more in touch with nature in southern Indiana. A short drive from campus is McCormick Creek State Park, Indiana’s oldest state park, complete with waterfalls and hiking trails.

Also not far from campus is the 202,814-acre Hoosier National Forest, which is especially scenic in the midst of autumn, Felts said. It is a bit of a further drive, but Felts said Brown County State Park, the largest of Indiana’s state parks, also offers the opportunity to hike through the nature of Indiana.

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NU-Minnesota pregame observations: A couple of early OL injury updates; see the full travel roster | Football








Nebraska vs. Minnesota, 10.16

Nebraska coach Scott Frost (right) talks with Husker offensive coordinator Matt Lubick (left) and Mario Verduzco during pregame warmups before taking on Minnesota on Saturday at Huntington Bank Stadium in Minneapolis.




MINNEAPOLIS — It’s a crystal clear, brisk October morning in Minneapolis. 

When Nebraska players hit the field for early warmups shortly before 9:30 a.m., the temperature sat in the mid-40s. Most of the Huskers got their early work in wearing sleeveless warmups, while others opted for loose sweatshirts. 

Coach Scott Frost and special teams coordinator Mike Dawson strolled around the field and watched the early work. 

Here are some other pregame observations: 

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* It doesn’t appear that redshirt freshman offensive lineman Ethan Piper made the trip. The Norfolk Catholic graduate was not out for early warmups like he usually is. 

The three centers snapping to quarterbacks in early warmups: Cam Jurgens, Trent Hixon and Nouredin Nouili. Typically, Piper is the third. 

Nouili, of course, has stepped into the starting lineup the past two weeks at left guard. 

That makes the Huskers a little bit short on the offensive line, as redshirt freshman Brant Banks also appears to be out again this week. He’s been unavailable the past two weeks with what looks like a right-hand injury. Freshman left tackle Teddy Prochazka, of course, suffered a season-ending knee injury last week against Michigan. 

Hixson, junior Broc Bando and redshirt freshman Ezra Miller would all be candidates to fill in up front if needed today. 



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The Michigan State football travel guide: Indiana University


After surviving a weekend in Piscataway, the Michigan State Spartans are back on the road, taking on the Indiana Hoosiers down in Bloomington, Indiana.

If you are heading down to southern Indiana to catch the game, there are plenty of restaurants, bars and attractions on and near the campus of Indiana University to check out.

The Campus

Indiana University is one of the most historic universities in the Big Ten. Founded in 1820, Indiana is the third oldest in the conference, behind only the University of Rutgers and the University of Michigan. There are plenty of iconic landmarks throughout the more than 200-year-old campus.

Of course, for those making the trek down to the Hoosier state this weekend, Memorial Stadium, better known as “The Rock,” will be a central aspect of the trip. Don’t forget to take a peak at the prow of the USS Indiana, a former battleship of the U.S. Navy, which sits just outside the stadium.

It might be a good idea to park a bit farther than normal and stroll around Indiana’s campus on the way to the game.

“Just walk around,” Patrick Felts, a student at Indiana and the multimedia football reporter at the Indiana Daily Student, said. “I might be biased, but I don’t think there’s a more beautiful campus on the face of the earth.”

The most iconic start to a walk through Indiana’s campus starts at the Sample Gates, which guard the entrance to the oldest part of the university. It is a classic spot to snap photos for visitors and students alike. Right around the corner gates is Dunn Woods, a 20-acre patch of land with winding brick pathways cutting through forestry. The Rose Well House, a limestone gazebo, is a campus landmark found in Dunn Woods.

There is plenty of unique architecture found throughout the campus. Eskenazi Museum of Art, — designed by the same architect that designed the Louvre in Paris, I.M. Pei — Lilly Library and Beck Chapel are just a few of the standouts on the Bloomington campus.

Bloomington

Indiana University teaches more than 80 languages — perhaps that is why Bloomington has such a diverse representation of cuisine from around the world.

Eighteen countries are represented by over 75 international restaurants throughout Bloomington, with anything from Turkish to Thai clustered mostly on 4th street.

Also, pro tip from Felts: if you find yourself out on the town during or after a night at the bars and have a craving for sushi or teriyaki, Z & C Teriyaki & Sushi has you covered.

If you are looking for a staple of Bloomington’s pizza scene, Mother Bear’s Pizza is a local favorite.

“It is pretty much the iconic Indiana restaurant,” Felts said.

Those looking to consume their daily calories in the form of alcohol can find plenty of bars up and down the streets of Kirkwood Ave., the central road and artery of activity in Bloomington. Kilroy’s is one of the most popular bars in Bloomington, especially among the student base, Felts said.

Nick’s English Hut is a more family friendly bar that specializes in both booze and food, with Indiana apparel and pictures crowding the walls and creating a real college eatery experience. The bar is also known for “sink the biz,” a drinking game that includes a bucket of beer and a floating cup.

Surrounding the city are plenty of parks and forests for those looking to get more in touch with nature in southern Indiana. A short drive from campus is McCormick Creek State Park, Indiana’s oldest state park, complete with waterfalls and hiking trails.

Also not far from campus is the 202,814-acre Hoosier National Forest, which is especially scenic in the midst of autumn, Felts said. It is a bit of a further drive, but Felts said Brown County State Park, the largest of Indiana’s state parks, also offers the opportunity to hike through the nature of Indiana.

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A quick guide for those traveling to Michigan football games


We often get asked about putting out some sort of guide for Michigan Wolverines fans that are coming to town for games, whether it be the first trip or a return visit. For whatever reason, we have not been able to get to it, but that changes today!

Below are some tips and tricks for people looking to maximize their time in Ann Arbor this fall. These are the takes and opinions of someone who has spent a decent amount of time around campus in the seven years of operating this site, so put into that what you will.

Without further ado, here would be my tips for your Michigan experience in town and around the stadium.

Note: MnB is not being paid or endorsed for any of these. We are simply sharing friendly tips!

Where should I stay?

This one is tough for me to answer given I live close enough to drive in, but I would suggest Residence Inn in Downtown Ann Arbor if I were planning a trip for you. The reviews are pretty positive and it puts you into the thick of where some of the good bars are restaurants are. It is about a mile down the road from the stadium and about a 25 minute or so walk down Main Street. If you need a break, there are plenty of bars and restaurants on the way to dip into.

Where should I park?

A move of mine in the past has been to park downtown and make the long walk. When the weather sucks, there are usually Ubers or Lyfts around that will get you pretty close, or at least a lot closer than the mile walk would.

But if you’re coming into town to take in a game, the U-M golf course or Ann Arbor Pioneer High School are your two best bets. It puts you right across the street from the stadium and throws you into the thick of the tailgate scene. It will be your priciest option at around $40-$50 a game. You can also park on someone’s lawn in one of the neighborhoods and pack a few travel beverages in a cooler and check out the tailgates for yourself.

What are some bars or eateries I should check out?

Whether enjoying a drink and an appetizer before or after the game or finding a place to partake in some adult beverages on your way to the stadium, there are plenty of options. Three of my favorites are The Pretzel Bell, Jim Brady’s and Pizza House. The first two are on the Main Street walk that we referenced earlier, while Pizza House is closer to campus on Church Street. The Brown Jug is another favorite of mine and is located over by Pizza House.

There are plenty of coffee shops in Ann Arbor being that it is both a college town and extremely hipstery. My favorite is RoosRoost, which has a location downtown on Liberty Street and another closer to the golf course off of Industrial Hwy.

How should I spend my pregame time?

Spend as much time around the stadium and at tailgates as you possibly can. There is nothing like a college sports tailgate, especially one that surrounds one of the cathedrals in college sports. There is plenty of stuff around the stadium for both families and kids. Your little ones (and let’s be honest, yourself as well) are going to be begging you for merch. MDen will have a pop-up location and there are usually a few other tents selling shirts, hats and more around the stadium.

Make an effort to get over to the East side of the stadium to see the band enter the Big House if you can. It’s not something I’ve ever been able to do, but everyone should probably check that out at least once.

How early should I get into the stadium?

The gates open two hours before kickoff. That’s a little early to get there as a fan, but if you’re the type that likes to settle in, find your seat and then take in the stadium a bit, that’s as early as you can get in. I would recommend getting in sometime within an hour of kickoff. It gives you enough time to see warmups, the band’s pregame performance, the team running out to touch the banner and more.

What should I do during the game?

Cheer on your squad and have the time of your life. Don’t be a jerk. Be mindful of the people around you. With that said, Michigan has a reputation for having older fans that want you to sit down. Just be respectful, but also be sure that you’re being able to bring the energy to the game that it requires. You’re allowed to cheer and go nuts when good things happen. Don’t be a jerk, though!

Other than that, have fun! Enjoy your Big House experience.

Do you have suggestions for what people should do during a football game visit? Be sure to sound off in the comments below! Everyone’s preferences and experiences are different, so the more opinions, the better.



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The Michigan State football travel guide: Rutgers University


The undefeated Michigan State Spartans return to the road this Saturday to take on the Rutgers Scarlet Knights on the east coast. 

Making your way to New Jersey to see the game in person? We have got you covered with a guide on the best sights, eateries and bars on and near the campus of Rutgers University.

A Historic Campus

Rutgers University is not only the oldest college in the Big Ten, it is one of the oldest in the country. Founded in 1766, the university now consists of five campuses stretching through Piscataway and New Brunswick. 

Rutgers holds the unique title of the “birthplace of college football”. Right on College Avenue is a statue commemorating the first-ever college football game between New Jersey (which eventually became Princeton) and Rutgers.

The statue is a central aspect of a gameday tradition called “the Scarlet Walk”. As the players arrive off the bus, they make sure to touch the statue on their way to the SHI Stadium as fans and the band cheer them on. 

The statue is one of many sights present on or near College Avenue, as the street strikes through the heart of campus.

Historic buildings, the student center, the main dining hall, the library and “the yard” (an open field on campus lined with restaurants that is often a hub of gameday activity) are all present on the street. Walking through College Avenue on gameday is one of the best ways to experience Rutgers campus, Aaron Breitman, Rutgers University alumnus and Managing Editor of Rutgers’ SB Nation site, On the Banks, said. 

“You hear the chatter and the energy hits you,” Breitman said.

Conveniently, near the library on College Avenue is Deiner Park, which has a bridge across the Raritan River to the stadium.

Right around the corner from College Avenue are a few iconic campus stops; the Kirkpatrick Chapel and Zimmerli Art Museum. The chapel, constructed in the 1800s, is a popular destination for weddings in the area (especially among Rutgers alumni) and one of the oldest surviving buildings. The Zimmerli Art Museum is one of the largest university museums in the country.

The Bar and Tailgating Scene

With a noon kickoff, those looking to tailgate are going to have to get up bright and early to pregame for the matchup. The lots open up at 7 a.m.

“The big joke used to be that everyone would tailgate and then not go into the game,” Breitman said. “Even when they were bad, there was a good tailgating vibe. It’s definitely a fun environment.”

But with an improving team and homecoming in town, Michigan State fans and students heading to the game should prepare for a raucous environment before and during the game.

If you are looking to celebrate (or forget) the results of the game, there are plenty of bars just off of campus in New Brunswick. 

“In terms of total package, like location and people, there are two major bars at Rutgers,” Dylan McCoy, a journalism senior at Rutgers and Associate Sports Director at The Daily Targum. “Old Queens Tavern and the Scarlet Pub,”

The bars are across the street from each other. 

The Food

Is there a better way to start or end gameday than with all your daily calories stuffed into a single hoagie bun — aptly named the “fat sandwich”? 

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One of the most iconic gameday foods in New Brunswick is the fat sandwich, which is essentially everything but the kitchen sink stuffed onto a hoagie bun. 

“It’s basically a bunch of bar food on a sandwich,” McCoy said.

Everything from mozzarella sticks to mac and cheese is on the sandwiches found on the menu of RU Hungry. While there are various iterations of the sandwich, nearly every version is adorned with a handful of french fries.

Also, if you’re in the mood to punish yourself, there is an open challenge to consume five fat sandwiches in 45 minutes. Win, and you get your own fat sandwich creation featured on the menu. 

Food trucks are an essential part of the food scene on gameday, lining up the road on Scarlet Knight Way near the tailgating lots. RU Hungry began as a food truck back in the 70s. Stuff Yer Face is another quintessential restaurant for Rutgers students, providing stromboli and a wide variety of beers. 

Also, being an east coast school, a discussion of the food at Rutgers would be incomplete without mentioning pizza.

“The pizza in New Jersey is the best in the country. 100 percent,” McCoy said.

There are plenty of options around town, many of which focus on delivering that classic east thin-crust style slice that is iconic in the region.

“If you’re not from the east coast, most of the places will stand out,” Breitman said. 

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The Michigan State football travel guide: Rutgers University


The undefeated Michigan State Spartans return to the road this Saturday to take on the Rutgers Scarlet Knights on the east coast. 

Making your way to New Jersey to see the game in person? We have got you covered with a guide on the best sights, eateries and bars on and near the campus of Rutgers University.

A Historic Campus

Rutgers University is not only the oldest college in the Big Ten, it is one of the oldest in the country. Founded in 1766, the university now consists of five campuses stretching through Piscataway and New Brunswick. 

Rutgers holds the unique title of the “birthplace of college football”. Right on College Avenue is a statue commemorating the first-ever college football game between New Jersey (which eventually became Princeton) and Rutgers.

The statue is a central aspect of a gameday tradition called “the Scarlet Walk”. As the players arrive off the bus, they make sure to touch the statue on their way to the SHI Stadium as fans and the band cheer them on. 

The statue is one of many sights present on or near College Avenue, as the street strikes through the heart of campus.

Historic buildings, the student center, the main dining hall, the library and “the yard” (an open field on campus lined with restaurants that is often a hub of gameday activity) are all present on the street. Walking through College Avenue on gameday is one of the best ways to experience Rutgers campus, Aaron Breitman, Rutgers University alumnus and Managing Editor of Rutgers’ SB Nation site, On the Banks, said. 

“You hear the chatter and the energy hits you,” Breitman said.

Conveniently, near the library on College Avenue is Deiner Park, which has a bridge across the Raritan River to the stadium.

Right around the corner from College Avenue are a few iconic campus stops; the Kirkpatrick Chapel and Zimmerli Art Museum. The chapel, constructed in the 1800s, is a popular destination for weddings in the area (especially among Rutgers alumni) and one of the oldest surviving buildings. The Zimmerli Art Museum is one of the largest university museums in the country.

The Bar and Tailgating Scene

With a noon kickoff, those looking to tailgate are going to have to get up bright and early to pregame for the matchup. The lots open up at 7 a.m.

“The big joke used to be that everyone would tailgate and then not go into the game,” Breitman said. “Even when they were bad, there was a good tailgating vibe. It’s definitely a fun environment.”

But with an improving team and homecoming in town, Michigan State fans and students heading to the game should prepare for a raucous environment before and during the game.

If you are looking to celebrate (or forget) the results of the game, there are plenty of bars just off of campus in New Brunswick. 

“In terms of total package, like location and people, there are two major bars at Rutgers,” Dylan McCoy, a journalism senior at Rutgers and Associate Sports Director at The Daily Targum. “Old Queens Tavern and the Scarlet Pub,”

The bars are across the street from each other. 

The Food

Is there a better way to start or end gameday than with all your daily calories stuffed into a single hoagie bun — aptly named the “fat sandwich”? 

Do you want the news without having to hunt for it?
Sign up for our morning s’newsletter. It’s everything your friends are talking about and then some. And it’s free!

One of the most iconic gameday foods in New Brunswick is the fat sandwich, which is essentially everything but the kitchen sink stuffed onto a hoagie bun. 

“It’s basically a bunch of bar food on a sandwich,” McCoy said.

Everything from mozzarella sticks to mac and cheese is on the sandwiches found on the menu of RU Hungry. While there are various iterations of the sandwich, nearly every version is adorned with a handful of french fries.

Also, if you’re in the mood to punish yourself, there is an open challenge to consume five fat sandwiches in 45 minutes. Win, and you get your own fat sandwich creation featured on the menu. 

Food trucks are an essential part of the food scene on gameday, lining up the road on Scarlet Knight Way near the tailgating lots. RU Hungry began as a food truck back in the 70s. Stuff Yer Face is another quintessential restaurant for Rutgers students, providing stromboli and a wide variety of beers. 

Also, being an east coast school, a discussion of the food at Rutgers would be incomplete without mentioning pizza.

“The pizza in New Jersey is the best in the country. 100 percent,” McCoy said.

There are plenty of options around town, many of which focus on delivering that classic east thin-crust style slice that is iconic in the region.

“If you’re not from the east coast, most of the places will stand out,” Breitman said. 

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A battle for the soul of European football


Never has football seen a clash like this. The proposed European Super League pits a US model of a tournament played among members of a largely closed group against the more open style of footballing competitions in the “old continent”.

Cynics might call it a brass-knuckle attempt by a powerful new quasi-cartel to supplant a rather older one, in the shape of Uefa, its Champions League and national associations. Who wins will have a profound impact on the future of the European game.

The struggle poses questions about football’s nature: is it a business like any other, or something more? With billions of euros of television rights and sponsorship money at stake and many clubs owned by investors demanding a return, top-level football clearly is big business. Today’s clash reflects its evolution from community-based sport into an arm of the global entertainment industry. Yet TV revenues generated by the big clubs help to support an extensive ecosystem of more minor teams.

As a business, football also relies for its audience on passion, suspense and unpredictability. True, a handful of clubs are now dominant in most countries. But the “pyramid” structure of the game in Europe allows even the smallest teams to break through to the top ranks — including European competitions — or win trophies through giant-killing exploits. Outside the top few, other clubs rise and fall with time.

While the Super League is proposed to have five rotating places, it will have 15 permanent members. That will make it look more like US leagues where there is no relegation or promotion and, as a result, revenues are far more predictable — leading to higher valuations. It is no coincidence that four founding clubs — Manchester United, Arsenal and Liverpool, plus Italy’s AC Milan — have American owners, and a US bank is providing the financing. The league may also have US-style cost-control elements such as salary caps and spending limits.

Its backers insist there is no shortage of excitement in American sport. The potential to pull in larger global TV audiences and tap new markets, they add, including through partnerships with the likes of Amazon and Facebook, would create a more financially stable tip of the European pyramid and increase fund flows to the base.

Yet having only five places up for grabs each year would limit the intrigues over who will “qualify for Europe”. Even if national divisions, such as the Premier League, relent on their threat to bar ESL participants, there is a real likelihood they will become less competitive as the top teams focus on midweek European fixtures. That would erode the attraction for the hundreds of thousands of fans who turn out to weekend games each week, but could never afford to travel repeatedly to European matches.

A better solution would be to rejig the Champions League in a way the big clubs can live with, without caving in to all their demands. There is no reason Uefa itself could not market a revamped product to new audiences via Big Tech. Some elements of the ESL’s plans, such as tighter caps on spending and pay — which could reduce the ability of super-wealthy owners to buy their way to success — may be worth copying.

Yet even if football is more than pure business, it is not an area in which governments should intervene, despite the spluttering of leaders from Boris Johnson of the UK to France’s Emmanuel Macron. The battle may be brutal, and poses a threat to this year’s European Championship for national teams. But the future of top-flight football should be decided not by politicians but by players, clubs, managers, if necessary the courts, and above all the fans. 



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Today’s Football Tips: Mbappe Can Tip the Balance in PSG’s Favour v Bayern


IT looks like an easy decision as to which Champions League match to watch on Tuesday night.

PSG and Bayern Munich served up a cracker last midweek with the Parisiens edging an exciting match by three goals to two but as the old cliche goes, you never write off the Germans so there could be plenty of miles left in the tie at Le Parc des Princes.

Chelsea look like they’ve done all the hard work in their tie with FC Porto following a 2-0 away last week and should see out the match without too much concern. Thomas Tuchel’s side impressed once again at the weekend with a 4-1 win at Crystal Palace, making that 5-2 loss to West Brom the previous week look more and more like a freak result.

The match takes place at Estadio Ramon Sanchez-Pizjuan in Seville so don’t get too carried on the 5/6 available for a Blues win.

That match in Paris could be a watershed for the French champions who have so often been the nearly men. Knocking out the current Champions League holders would be a significant statement of intent. They’re just 1/3 to qualify and will be desperate not to blow it once again.

KevMac reckons Kylian Mbappe could be a thorn in Bayern’s side once more and he’s the pick of the bunch to find the net in his Match Preview.

Tuesday’s action on the site begins early in Australia where Newcastle Jets welcome Perth Glory in the popular A League. Tolu previews the match and no doubt that’ll feature for some of the early birds in the comments section.

Tuesday night is a busy one in the Championship, League One, League Two and the lower leagues in Scotland as team race to finish their fixtures before the end of the curtailed season.

Jamie Kennedy picks out his four best bets across the UK in his Tuesday Night Win Acca which pays 9/1.

Tuesday’s Match Previews & Tips

Racing Tips

Alan Thomson landed his nap at Windsor yesterday and has two selections online for Tuesday

Good luck with all your bets on Tuesday!



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Tryouts held for City of Rochester’s first travel football team


He says he’s committed to building up young athletes through football by providing social and emotional support, health and wellness and activities, and character-building tasks. 

“Rochester has the talent,” he says. “I played college ball, I grew up here. I know that Rochester always had the talent, we just didn’t have the opportunities that major cities had. So I wanted to bring that here. It wasn’t easy, but with the support of close friends, family, motivating me to do it. I figure I’ve been blessed financially so I’ll bring that back into the community.” 

RMG Elite is aiming to recruit about 20 athletes to fill their 2021 team roster. They plan to be on the road to compete in the Diamond Summer Shine Classics in Charlotte, N.C. in June. 



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Wolfsberger vs. Tottenham Hotspur – Football Match Report – February 18, 2021


Gareth Bale scored one goal and created another as Tottenham Hotspur enjoyed a 4-1 win in the first leg of their Europa League last-32 clash with Austrian side Wolfsberger on Thursday.

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The Welshman, whose starts have mainly been limited to the Europa League since returning to Spurs on loan from Real Madrid in October, set up Son Heung-Min for his side’s opener.

Bale struck a classy second goal in the 28th minute, taking his tally for the season to five, before Lucas Moura made it 3-0 with a solo effort before halftime.

Wolfsberger, the home side despite having to play in the Puskas Arena in Budapest because of Austrian COVID-19 travel restrictions, made a match of it after the break with Michael Liendl pulling a goal back from the penalty spot.

Chris Wernitznig almost scored again for the hosts when his shot struck the underside of the crossbar and stayed out before Tottenham substitute Carlos Vinicius, who had replaced Son at halftime, touched home his side’s fourth late on.

It was Tottenham’s first away win in the knockout stages of the Europa League since 2008 and Jose Mourinho, a winner of the competition with Manchester United, is clearly taking it seriously.

Spurs lost four of their last five games in the Premier League and will be hoping the victory kickstarts a revival.

“Winning games breeds confidence and hopefully now this can be the start of a good run,” Bale said.

Bale was given a rare start, as was Dele Alli, and both impressed in a dominant first half for Tottenham. Harry Kane did not travel to Budapest.

Bale’s low cross was met with an instinctive stooping header by Son and when he was played in again on the right by Matt Doherty he cleverly backheeled the ball before spinning and firing a left-foot shot past Alexander Kofler.

Tottenham keeper Hugo Lloris made a great save to tip Dario Vizinger’s header on to the woodwork before Moura put Spurs in command as he cut in from the left and sliced through Wolfsberg’s defence before beating Koflet with a low shot.

Tottenham’s intensity dropped after the break and they were punished when Moussa Sissoko clipped Wernitznig in the area in the 55th minute and Liendl slotted home the penalty.

Had Wernitznig’s effort been a fraction lower it could have got uncomfortable for Tottenham but Vinicius made sure they take a comfortable lead into next week’s second leg in north London.

Mourinho was pleased with the effort from his players, calling out Bale and Alli.

“We had a result and we had a team performance. I believe they were positive like the team was,” Mourinho said. “I took Gareth off. I know in this process it was not so easy to play the 90 minutes. Dele worked hard. He got a yellow card and with the referee giving yellow cards so easily to us I didn’t want to risk it.”

On Kane’s absence, Mourinho said: “His feelings were that to play this game could be a risk with the accumulation of minutes and the accumilation of minutes after the [ankle] injury that he had.

“Of course myself and the medical department, we agreed with him in giving him this opportunity to take care of his condition, but I believe on Sunday he will be OK and ready [against West Ham].”



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