SEC’s rash of COVID-19 postponements impacts not just the league but the College Football Playoff, too

This is now a COVID-19 crisis redefined for college football. We’re 38 days from the conference championship games and two additional from the College Football Playoff semifinals commence — and yet — the sport is running out of runway.

The SEC on Tuesday postponed three games over coronavirus concerns. For the first time, there is the possibility the conference may cancel a game. Alabama-LSU came into the season as the game of the year. Now, it might not even be played.

Will that particular game matter? The answer isn’t altogether evident, but the more time that ticks off the calendar brings a clearer answer: What ifs? are turning into what nows?

The count now stands at 52 FBS games this season that have been canceled or postponed. That’s approximately a full Saturday of games for all 127 teams playing this fall. On the surface, that shouldn’t be a surprise.

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University of Hartford men’s basketball unveils America East schedule; will play 18 league games, starting Dec. 19

The University of Hartford will play 18 conference games in the America East this winter starting Dec. 19 at home against Maine, the school announced on Monday.

a person standing in front of a crowd: University of Hartford Hawks head coach John Gallagher talks to a referee during the second half.

© Richard Messina / Hartford Courant/Hartford Courant/TNS
University of Hartford Hawks head coach John Gallagher talks to a referee during the second half.

The Hawks’ league slate will pit them against nine conference foes. Each school will play each other in back-to-back games at the same location, with Hartford hosting Maine on Dec. 19-20.

The start time for each game has yet to be decided. The full league schedule is as follows:

Home vs. Maine, Dec. 19-20

At New Hampshire, Dec. 27-28

Home vs. Binghamton, Jan. 2-3

At UMass Lowell, Jan. 8-10

At University of Maryland-Baltimore County, Jan. 16-17

Home vs. Vermont, Jan. 23-24

Home vs. New Jersey Institute of Technology, Jan. 30-32

At Stony Brook, Feb. 18-19

Home vs. Albany, Feb. 27-28

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Former Bulldogs and Dragons veteran James Graham calls time on 18-year rugby league career

2020 will be the last year of James Graham’s illustrious rugby league career after the St. Helens veteran forward announced his retirement.

The 35-year-old will hang the boots up having played over 400 games across an 18-year career in the Super League and NRL, as well as 44 Tests for England.

Graham debuted with the Saints in 2003 and played 224 games for the club before shifting to the Canterbury Bulldogs in 2012.

MORE: Everything you need to know about State of Origin game one

The Englishman played 135 first grade games at Belmore and featured in the Bulldogs’ 2012 and 2014 grand final sides. He was named captain of the club in the 2015 season.

Graham then moved to the St. George Illawarra Dragons ahead of the 2018 season and played 52 matches across three seasons for the Red V, before gaining a release and returning to St. Helens

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College football games, Week 8: As Big Ten kicks off 2020 season, rest of league looks up to Ohio State

If Michigan-Minnesota is the game of the week, geez, things really have changed. Suddenly, Minnesota is the hot, young program with a hot, young coach (P.J. Fleck). Michigan is … actually, what is Michigan right now?

It’s certainly not Ohio State’s equal. That’s really the only standard the program is judged by as we head into Year 6 of Jim Harbaugh. The ultimate Michigan Man is coming off a fifth straight loss to the Buckeyes with somewhat of a rebuilding project on his hands.

If you had to choose a trajectory between the two programs, which would you pick? Fleck is coming off an 11-win season during which he had the Golden Gophers in College Football Playoff contention well into November.

“We want to get back to those days of a being a blueblood,” Fleck said of Saturday’s game for the Little Brown Jug. “We’re not ever going to  just

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Ozil’s Arsenal career all-but over after Premier League axe

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Mesut Ozil could have played his last game for Arsenal after he was left out of the club’s 25-man Premier League squad, sources have told ESPN.

The 32-year-old has not played a single minute for the Gunners since March 7 and was not registered with UEFA for their Europa League campaign which begins against Rapid Vienna on Thursday.

– Stream LIVE games and replays on ESPN+ (U.S. only)
– Ozil at Arsenal: The highs and lows

Premier League clubs have until Tuesday at 2 p.m. BST (9 a.m. ET) to submit their final 25-man group after the closure of the domestic window in England and ESPN has learned Ozil and Sokratis Papastathopoulos have been left out.

Sources: Arsenal axe Ozil from Prem squad
• Police probe Pickford, Richarlison threats

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Man City-linked Messi would thrive in any league but finishing career at Barca is more ‘romantic’, says Mendieta

Manchester City-linked superstar Lionel Messi would have no issue adapting to any other league but the “romantic” idea of the Argentina great remaining a one-club man with Barcelona is appealing, says Gaizka Mendieta.

There was a time when the idea of Messi, Barca’s all-time leading goalscorer, departing Camp Nou would have been unthinkable.

But such a notion was a very distinct possibility during a tumultuous period following Barca’s humiliating 8-2 exit at the hands of Bayern Munich in the Champions League in August.

Messi provided Barca with a message notifying the club of his intention to leave, citing his belief that a clause in his contract allowed him to depart on a free transfer.

Both Barca and La Liga disputed his interpretation, stating any potential suitor would have to pay the €700 million (£634m/$820m) release clause or negotiate a fee with Barca.

Consequently, Messi opted to remain at Barca, insisting 

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