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Los Angeles to host 2028 Summer Olympics; Paris wins 2024 Games

The city of Los Angeles will host the Summer Olympics in 2028 instead of the 2024 Games, as previously considered, The Associated Press confirmed Wednesday.

The Los Angeles Times reported that the International Olympic Committee was expected to make an announcement confirming the news last month.

It will be the city’s third time hosting the event. Los Angeles previously hosted the Games in 1932 and again in 1984. 

>> Read more trending news 

The last time the Games took place on American soil was in 2002, when the Winter Games took place in Salt Lake City. Before that, the most recent Games hosted in the U.S. were in Atlanta during the summer of 1996.

According to the AP, this year marks the first time in history the IOC, which also announced the Paris 2024 Summer Games, has granted two Summer Olympics at once.

The decision came after deliberations in which Pyeongchang and Los Angeles were the final two cities considered for the 2024 Summer Games, and the IOC “couldn’t bear to see either lose,” the AP reported.

The following cities have won bids for upcoming Olympic Games: 

  • Pyeongchang -- Winter Games 2018
  • Tokyo -- Summer Games 2020
  • Beijing -- Winter Games 2022
  • Paris -- Summer Games 2024
  • Los Angeles -- Summer Games 2028

Read more at The Associated Press. 

Bengals rule out two starters for Texans game

The Cincinnati Bengals will be without two starters for Thursday night’s nationally televised game against the Houston Texans.

Defensive end Michael Johnson (concussion) and right guard Trey Hopkins (knee) are out, while starting safety Shawn Williams (elbow) and tight end C.J. Uzomah (ankle) have been upgraded to questionable. Rookie first-round pick John Ross (knee) is questionable for the second week in a row.

›› Predictions for Bengals-Texans, and all Week 2 NFL games

Williams and Uzomah returned to practice this week after suffering injuries in training camp. Uzomah went down in practice Aug. 7, while Williams left the Aug. 19 preseason game against Kansas City.

Ross left the Aug. 31 preseason finale against Indianapolis.

Follow Jay Morrison on Twitter

The questionable designation means a player has a 50 percent likelihood of playing, but it would be surprising to see Williams, Uzomah or Ross on the field Thursday night given the minimal practice time they’ve had in a short week.

Danica Patrick loses NASCAR job

Danica Patrick, the only female driver at NASCAR's top level, is likely at the end of her driving career after a sponsorship shake-up left her without a ride at Stewart-Haas Racing.

>> Read more trending news 

Patrick posted a statement on her Facebook page Tuesday saying her time with Stewart-Haas "had come to an end" due to a new sponsorship arrangement for the team next season. The statement came shortly after Smithfield Foods said it will leave Richard Petty Motorsports to become a primary sponsor at Stewart-Haas next year.

The news is a blow to RPM, which is also losing driver Aric Almirola. But it also forced changes at Stewart-Haas, which has struggled with sponsorship for three of its four cars, including the No. 10 Ford driven by Patrick.

"It has been my honor to drive for Tony Stewart, Gene Haas and everyone at Stewart-Haas Racing for the past six seasons," Patrick wrote. "Sponsorship plays a vital role in our sport, and I have been very fortunate over the course of my career, but this year threw us for a curve."

Patrick, whose participation in NASCAR has always been polarizing given the attention she receives despite her lack of success, closed the post by writing: "I have the utmost faith in myself and those around me, and feel confident about my future."

Patrick has launched a clothing line, has a book coming out next year and has made a huge transition into promoting a healthy and fit lifestyle. It has her positioned for a second career at the age of 35 if she chooses. She's also in a long-term relationship with fellow driver Ricky Stenhouse Jr., who will make his debut in the playoffs this weekend.

Sponsorship dollars have been hard to come by for a number of drivers and teams. Smithfield's decision leaves Petty's team in need of a sponsor, and Almirola is looking for a ride.

But the bigger changes are clearly underway at SHR, which didn't reveal where Smithfield will be in the organization in 2018.

"Details of the agreement, including the driver who will be added to SHR's Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series lineup in 2018, will be provided at a later date," SHR said in a statement.

That means Smithfield could end up on the car Patrick has driven. Clint Bowyer and Kurt Busch both need sponsorship on their cars, too. Busch, the Daytona 500 winner, does not have a deal with SHR for next season.

Both Harvick and Busch will represent SHR in the 10-race playoffs that begin Sunday at Chicagoland Speedway.

Now that Patrick has confirmed she's out at SHR, the team could choose to downsize to three cars, or pursue Almirola, Matt Kenseth, Kasey Kahne or any other available driver. The team could be in the market to replace just Patrick, or both Patrick and Busch.

Patrick has driven for Stewart-Haas Racing her entire Cup career. She has seven top-10 finishes in 180 career starts and is currently 28th in the standings, the lowest in her Cup career.

Still, she won the pole for the 2013 Daytona 500, won an IndyCar race in 2008, is the highest finishing female driver in Indianapolis 500 history with a third-place run in 2009 and is the only woman to lead laps in both the Indy 500 and the Daytona 500. Patrick is the only woman to win a Cup pole and those top-10 finishes are the most of any female Cup driver.

"She will go down as the best female NASCAR driver of all time. Will likely take decades to see anyone even challenge her legacy," Brad Keselowski posted on Twitter. He later added in a second post: "Have come to accept that mankind never knows or appreciates what it has until its gone. NASCAR fans will miss her badly in time."

Patrick's contract with SHR ran through 2018, but the team has been searching for sponsorship since Nature's Bakery abruptly ended its three-year deal after one season.

RPM is now in a similar bind because it lost Smithfield, which has been associated with Petty the last six years. RPM this year downsized to one Cup car because of sponsorship reasons, and talks on a contract extension with Almirola stalled when Smithfield began looking at other options.

Petty ripped the company and suggested he was blindsided.

"Over the past few months, Smithfield had continually told me they wanted to be with us, and I recently shook hands on a deal to extend our relationship," Petty said. "I come from a time when we did major deals with sponsors like STP on a handshake. I'm sad to see this is where we are now. This decision is very unexpected, and we are extremely disappointed in this late and abrupt change of direction."

Smithfield CEO Kenneth M. Sullivan called Petty's claim of a handshake deal "unequivocally and patently false," and accused the team of not delivering on "tens of millions of dollars of unwavering financial support."

"Smithfield's numerous discussions with RPM over the past several months focused exclusively around one issue: RPM's inability to deliver on the track and the organization's repeated failure to present a plan to address its lack of competitiveness," Sullivan said in a statement. "It is very unfortunate and disheartening that RPM has chosen to disseminate false statements regarding our communications to NASCAR fans who we have supported wholeheartedly with more than a $100 million investment in the sport over the last several years."

Almirola was 20th in the standings when he broke his back in May. It caused him to miss seven races, and the team is currently 25th in the standings. He did make NASCAR's playoffs, in 2014, after he won at Daytona in July.

Petty, the Hall of Fame driver and seven-time NASCAR champion, is no longer the primary owner of his race team. Andrew Murstein of Medallion Financial Corp. is the majority owner of the team.

Petty said he and Murstein were committed to "moving forward" with the No. 43 team.

"Losing a sponsor of this magnitude in September is a significant set-back to Richard Petty Motorsports," Petty said. "We've been around since 1949, and we'll be around a lot longer."

ESPN apologizes after Jemele Hill calls Trump a 'white supremacist'

ESPN anchor Jemele Hill may find herself in hot water with the network after she called President Donald Trump a "white supremacist" on Twitter.

"Donald Trump is a white supremacist who has largely surrounded himself w/ other white supremacists," she wrote Monday. "The height of white privilege is being able to ignore his white supremacy, because it's of no threat to you. Well, it's a threat to me."

>> Read more trending news

She added: "Trump is the most ignorant, offensive president of my lifetime. His rise is a direct result of white supremacy. Period."

Her tweets quickly went viral. Read her full remarks below:

The network released an apology, which was shared by ESPN PR on Twitter:

“The comments on Twitter from Jemele Hill regarding the President do not represent the position of ESPN,” the statement read. “We have addressed this with Jemele and she recognizes her actions were inappropriate.”

>> Read the statement here

Read more here. 

Top-100 2018 recruit picks Dayton

The Dayton Flyers earned a verbal commitment from a top-100 recruit in the class of 2018 on Monday.

Dwayne Cohill, a 6-foot-2 guard and four-star recruit from Holy Name High School in Parma Heights, Ohio, announced his commitment on Twitter. He's the highest-ranked recruit and first recruit from Ohio to commit to new Dayton coach Anthony Grant and his staff.

Cohill first visited UD for a team camp when he was a freshman and received interest from former Dayton coach Archie Miller early in his high school career

“He can play point guard and shooting guard,” Holy Name coach Jeff Huber told the Dayton Daily News. “Because of his versatility and the conversations I had with coach Grant and the conversations coach Grant had with him this weekend, I think he’s going to fit in great with the way Dayton wants to play. He’s great at getting to the basket. He’s an outstanding ball-handler, good passer and good shooter who I think will continue to improve as a shooter. He rebounds well for a guard. He’s a good on-the-ball defender. The think that what made me excited about him choosing Dayton is I think it’s the right fit for him. I think he’s going to have a chance to have an outstanding career there if he continues to work and continues to progress.”

Cohill ranks 92nd in the class of 2018, according to Rivals.com. He’s No. 96, according to 247Sports.com, and No. 5 in Ohio. ESPN also ranks him fifth in Ohio and 22nd overall in the nation at his position.

Cohill thanked all the schools that recruited him in his Twitter post, as well as his mother, sister and coaches.

“This has been a day that my family and I have dreamed of since I started playing the game I love,” Cohill wrote.

Cohill also wrote, “I believe in what coach Grant and his staff are building, and I can’t wait to be a part of it. It’s always a great day to be a Flyer!”

Cohill had scheduled visits to Ohio State, Virginia Tech and Vanderbilt in the coming weeks. Clemson, UNLV, West Virginia, Texas, Pittsburgh and Penn State also made his top 10.

RELATED: UD to open A-10 play on road

As a junior, Cohill averaged 22.9 points, 6.9 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 2.5 steals per game. He shot 35 percent from 3-point range. Holy Name finished 23-4 and reached the Division II regional semifinals.

In August, Cohill told Scout.com of Dayton, I talk to Coach (Anthony) Grant or an assistant at least five times a week. They tell me they need a lead guard who can come in and make an impact and how I could be the face of their program. It is just intriguing, and I feel like I could come in and make an impact right away."

According to NEOhioSpotlight.com, Cohill is “possesses an innate ability to finish in the open floor, using a variety of evasive stepthroughs to maneuver around defenders. When he is locked in, he has the length and lateral quickness to be a lockdown defender at the next level. He is a capable playmaker moving forward and has made a conscious effort to improve his decision making.”

Hurricane Irma: Tim Tebow works with Florida Gov. Rick Scott in preparing for storm

Tim Tebow is doing charitable things once again.

>> Click here for complete Hurricane Irma coverage from the Palm Beach Post

Per "The Paul Finebaum Show," the former Florida Gators quarterback is working alongside Gov. Rick Scott in helping the Sunshine State prepare for Hurricane Irma, which is supposed to arrive this weekend.

>> Hurricane Irma: Live updates

Irma already has caused the cancellation of several college football games, including the Gators hosting Northern Colorado on Saturday. Miami decided not to travel to Arkansas State, and South Florida vs. Connecticut also was postponed.

>> PHOTOS: Hurricane Irma approaches Florida

Scott has been asking Florida citizens to volunteer to assist those who are in need as the disastrous storm heads their way.

>> Read more trending news

People willing to volunteer can go to VolunteerFlorida.org to sign up.

Michael Bennett speaks out about Las Vegas police ‘excessive use of force’

UPDATE Sept. 6 7:12 PM:  NFL commissioner Roger Goodell issued a statement on Michael Bennett’s letter about Las Vegas police.

According to the statement, the Las Vegas police will respond to the letter later Wednesday evening.

“Our foremost concern is the welfare of Michael and his family...,” the statement said. “We will support Micahel and all NFL players in promoting mutual respect between law enforcement and the communities they loyally serve and fair and equal treatment under the law.”

ORIGINAL STORY:

In an open letter posted on Twitter, Seattle Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett says Las Vegas police ordered him to the ground at gunpoint, put a gun near his head and threatened to shoot him after hearing gunshots were fired nearby.

Bennett detailed the incident that was captured in a brief video posted by TMZ Sports on Aug. 26 when he was in Las Vegas to watch the Mayweather-McGregor fight.

Bennett said after the match, while he was heading back to the hotel that night, people heard gunshots fired and he, like others, tried to flee. 

>> Read more trending news

According to Bennett's statement, police ordered him to the ground at gunpoint, jammed a knee into his back and handcuffed him so tightly that his fingers went numb.

The video, which is reportedly shot outside of Drai’s Nightclub on the Las Vegas Strip, shows Bennett asking why he was being detained. 

“I wasn’t doing nothing, man,” Bennett is heard saying in the video. “They told us to get out and everybody ran.”

According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, parts of Drai’s Nightclub were evacuated early Sunday for shooting reports that turned out to be false. The police department found that large statues were knocked down onto the tile floor during a fight, which caused panic and prompted reports of a shooting. 

In his letter, Bennett called it an excessive use of force, simply because he was a “black man in the wrong place at the wrong time.” He said one officer placed a gun near his head and warned him if he moved he would “blow his (expletive) head off.”

Bennett said officers refused to answer him when he asked, “What did I do?” He said he feared for his life.

According to TMZ Sports, citing unnamed sources it says are connected to the investigation, police ordered everyone to get down and not move. When Bennett ran, an officer stopped him at gunpoint and ordered him to get on the ground.

Eventually, after sitting in the back of a police car “for what felt like an eternity,” he was released after they realized he “was not a thug, common criminal or ordinary black man, but Michael Bennett, a famous professional football player.”

Bennett, who has been sitting in protest during the national anthem in recent games, gave his reasoning for the protest in the letter.

“(E)quality doesn’t live in this country, and no matter how much money you make, what job title you have or have much you give, when you are seen as a ‘(racial slur)’ you will be treated that way.”

Bennett spoke more about the letter at a news conference Wednesday, calling the police confrontation a “traumatic experience.”

“Do I think every police officer is bad? No,” Bennett said. “Do I believe some people judge people on the color of their skin? I do believe that.”

Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said at the same news conference he and the team “stand in support of him and anyone facing inequalities.”

“May this incident inspire all of us to respond with compassion when inequalities are brought to light. And allow us to stand up for change, because we can do better than this,” Carroll said.

ESPN reported that Bennett said he was considering filing a civil rights lawsuit. His letter said he has hired Oakland civil rights attorney John Burris.

The full letter can be read on Bennett’s Twitter page.

NFL moves Miami Dolphins’ game vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers to Nov. 19

The Dolphins-Buccaneers season opener won’t be an opener after all. The NFL decided Wednesday morning to move the game at Hard Rock Stadium to Nov. 19, the bye week for both teams, because of Hurricane Irma.

>> Read more trending news 

The decision was reached after the league, in consultation with officials from both teams and government agencies, had deliberated since Monday on the best course of action.

The Dolphins canceled practice Wednesday.

The Dolphins’ new season-opener will be at 4:05 p.m. Sept. 17 at the Los Angeles Chargers.

The Bucs game originally was scheduled for Hard Rock Stadium at 1 p.m. Sunday, when Irma would be too close to South Florida for anyone to be outside. The league finally admitted as much Tuesday afternoon, when it issued a statement saying the game would not be played in South Florida this week.

“In the interest of public safety in light of the current state of emergency, the NFL, in consultation with state and local officials as well as both clubs, has decided that playing an NFL game in South Florida this week is not appropriate,” the league said in a statement.

Among the options considered were moving to a neutral site or playing it later in the season. Both teams had a bye Nov. 19, but this now means the Dolphins will play 16 consecutive weeks, something Dolphins players were reluctant to do.

But there were no options that would please everybody. Scheduling it upstate this weekend, perhaps Orlando or Jacksonville, was risky because Irma could affect those cities, too. Moving it out of state would mean taking the players away from their families when some may be experiencing a hurricane for the first time.

“I’m definitely concerned about the community in South Florida, really the whole state, especially with our State of Emergency,” defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh said. “Luckily my family doesn’t like me, so they’re up in Portland, Ore., and Detroit and up north. They’re safe for the most part. Myself, we’ll figure something out.”

Quaterback Jay Cutler, who arrived a month ago from Nashville, said, “I’m in a different situation than most of these guys because my family’s not here. A lot of these guys have a lot on their plate, moving their families and your house and your cars.

“I’m one of the few lucky ones that I’ve got a car here and a bag full of clothes, and that’s kind of it. You’ve got a lot of guys in that locker room that are going through a lot of things in their head, and we’ve got to be mindful of that and kind of help them in any way possible.”

Moving the Bucs game out of Hard Rock would have meant only six true home games this season, since the game against New Orleans will be in London.

This is the second time in recent history that weather affected a Dolphins opener. In September 2004, the opener vs. Tennessee was shifted from Sunday to Saturday because of concerns about Hurricane Ivan.

King of the Hill: ACC Power Rankings (Week 2)

Now that we're underway, I wanted to throw out my weekly power rankings for the first time this season. As a reminder, these rankings take into consideration how a team has played all year and aren't simply based on their last game. There is weight given to what a team has done lately, though.

That said, here are my rankings after the first week of action. These typically fluctuate quite a bit for the first half of the season before settling in once we have a better idea of where teams fit.

Regarding Pitt, I don't think they're nearly as bad as the final score of that Youngstown State game showed. But I also couldn't legitimately slot them higher than teams who won their opener by 40 and 50 points, either.

1. Clemson (1-0) - Crushed Kent State, 56-3

2. Florida State (0-1) - Lost to Alabama, 24-7, and also lost quarterback Deondre Francois for the season with an injury

3. Virginia Tech (1-0) - Impressive 31-24 win over No. 22 West Virginia

4. Louisville (1-0) - Close 35-28 win over Purdue

5. Miami (1-0) - Easy 41-13 win over Bethune-Cookman

6. Georgia Tech (0-1) - Lost 42-41 in double overtime vs. No. 25 Tennessee

7. North Carolina State (0-1) - 35-28 loss to South Carolina

8. North Carolina (0-1) - 35-30 loss to Cal

9. Duke (1-0) - 60-7 win over North Carolina Central

10-. Wake Forest (1-0) - 51-7 win over Presbyterian

11. Syracuse (1-0) - 50-7 win over Central Connecticut

12. Pitt (1-0) - 28-21 overtime win over Youngstown State

13. Virginia (1-0) - 28-10 win over William & Mary

14. Boston College (1-0) - Narrow win over Northern Illinois, 23-20

Be sure to join Cardiac Hill's Facebook page and follow us on Twitter @PittPantherBlog for our regular updates on Pitt athletics. Follow the author and founder/editor @AnsonWhaley.

J.J. Watt’s Harvey fundraising pushes past $20 million

J.J. Watt’s rush to continue raising money for the victims of Hurricane Harvey and the historic flooding in and around Houston that followed the Aug. 25-30 storm broke the $20 million mark, as his online crowdfunding site pushed past that threshold about 12:30 p.m. Tuesday, according to USA Today.

>> George Strait, Beyonce, others to hold Hurricane Harvey relief concert

Watt pledged $100,000 to the Red Cross fund when he started it with the goal of raising $200,000.

>> Read more trending news

“It’s such a testament to the people out there," Watt said Sunday after donations of $1 million from Tennessee Titans owner Amy Adams Strunk, $1 million from Walmart, $200,000 from hip-hop artist Drake and $50,000 from NBA star Chris Paul.

Watt, an all-pro defensive end for the Houston Texans, said Sunday when the total raised was at $17 million. “It’s such a testament to how much good there is in the world.’’

>> Complete Harvey coverage from the Austin American-Statesman

Many NFL owners and players have pledged money to Harvey victims, including Falcons owner Arthur Blank, who has committed $1 million.

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