Black Ferns awarded first-ever contracts

first_img Opinion: What’s next for women’s rugby? Triumph: The Black Ferns celebrate their 2017 Women’s World Cup win (Getty Images) All you need to know about the Women’s… Expand “Yes. Lots of girls here are playing five or six sports at high school and making decisions later. Now getting a full-time sevens contract is an option, as is getting a 15s part-time contract, so rugby union is going to become a really competitive option for that talent and there are also players playing other codes who are looking to come across.”As well as winning the World Cup, Cocksedge says the development of other nations was a catalyst for change in NZ Rugby, who have been criticised for their commitment to the Black Ferns.“While it mostly came off the back of the success last year, it was alongside the fact other countries had moved ahead. We needed to do something to keep our players here and this will help to do that. People will continue to go overseas for a different life experience, but this is a really good incentive and means we’re not going to fall behind.”MORE ON WOMEN’S RUGBY: New Zealand have given their top women’s 15-a-side players contracts for the first time – Ali Donnelly gets the lowdown BACKS: Chelsea Alley, Ariana Bayler, Grace Brooker, Kendra Cocksedge, Krysten Cottrell, Ruahei Demant, Kilistina Moata’ane, Victoria Subritzky-Nafatali, Kristina Sue, Renee Wickliffe, Selica Winiata.This article originally appeared in the June 2018 issue of Rugby World magazine. Follow Rugby World on Facebook, Twitter and Instagtam. Tyrrells Premier 15s inspiring next generation LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS Why rugby must build on the momentum created… Women’s World Cup Final: England 32-41 New Zealand Opinion: What’s next for women’s rugby? Tyrrells Premier 15s inspiring next generation Expand Collapse Women’s World Cup Final: England 32-41 New Zealand Black Ferns awarded first-ever contractsA few weeks on from the news that New Zealand’s 15-a-side women’s stars are receiving professional contracts for the first time, Kendra Cocksedge is reflecting on how well it has gone down with the public.“The reaction has been hugely positive and I think the players, fans and the country are excited about where the women’s game is going,” the scrum-half says. “People have been talking to me about what a positive step it is, so there has been really good awareness of what’s happening and it’s all positive.”Cocksedge played an integral role in the negotiations and although she is keen not to overplay the announcement, she believes it’s a vital stepping stone on the road to being fully professional.“This is a big step forward. There is no going back now as far as I’m concerned. The investment and the profile is only going to get bigger from here on in.”Despite winning five of the past six Women’s World Cups, New Zealand have always lagged behind in terms of investing in the Black Ferns. Sevens has taken precedence in recent seasons, but last year’s World Cup win in Ireland put the 15s team back in the public eye.Star turn: Kendra Cocksedge is a standout at scrum-half (Getty Images)“It’s really taken off since our success last year,” says Cocksedge. “That win has helped changed mindsets. More people watched that World Cup than ever before and the public have been impressed with the quality of the game.”The key detail of the contracts is that up to 30 Black Ferns will be placed on guaranteed retainers, paid between $12,500 and $20,000 (£6,500-10,500) annually, based on Test experience. While this is a hugely welcome move, Cocksedge says in reality it won’t be life-altering for most of the top players.“The way it’s being modelled means for a lot of us it’s about being rewarded for what we were doing anyway. The commitment is something like training ten to 14 hours per week in our hubs and individually.“I was certainly doing that, but for some players the contracts mean extra support in areas they might not have had, like medical, insurance and so on.”As part of the negotiating team, Cocksedge is well-placed to talk about the changing world of professionalism in the women’s game, where contracts are becoming the norm and athletes are playing catch-up in how to deal with it.Reward: Players will now be paid to attend training camps (Getty Images)“I was part of a wider team involved – there were six or seven of us – and I learnt a lot around the whole process. Generally I think there are not many women’s players well equipped yet in understanding what they need to do before signing deals. That is something that we’re going to have to work on.“The more the game goes down this route, the more players are signing on with agents and so on, the better that will be. It is a new world.”Does she believe more youngsters will now choose rugby in New Zealand? The move of the women’s game to a more professional model has led to developments in top domestic leagues, including in England, France and Australia where significant investments are being made. Cocksedge believes New Zealand also have a chance to make improvements in this area.“The NPC is a quality competition and it has become much more competitive. It’s interesting to see how others are investing in their leagues and perhaps the future is a league for us alongside the top Australian team. I believe that is realistic and possible and would be a huge boost to the game here.“The game is just continuing to move forward at every level. I watched a lot of the Six Nations this year and thought France were fantastic; they’re going to be a huge threat in the years to come.“Countries like Japan are investing in their systems and leagues, and players are going there from overseas, so the money is going in and it’s getting more exposure. I’m glad we’re part of it.”The first 28 Black Ferns players to be contracted by the NZ Rugby have been named and include 17 of the 2017 World Cup-winning squad.2018 BLACK FERNS SQUADFORWARDS: Eloise Blackwell, Les Elder, Fiao’o Faamausili, Dhys Faleafaga, Harono Iringa, Aldora Itunu, Linda Itunu, Pip Love, Charmaine McMenamin, Toka Natua, Joanah Ngan Woo, Te Kura Ngata-Aerengamate, Aleisha Nelson, Marcelle Parkes, Leilani Perese, Aroha Savage, Charmaine Smith. After Saracens’ success in the inaugural Tyrrells Premier…last_img read more

Several attacks on journalists during parliamentary elections

first_img News Reporters Without Borders condemns the physical attacks on journalists that occurred in various parts of the country while they were covering parliamentary elections on 21 May. The victims included a newspaper reporter in the eastern region of Kakheti and two TV crews and a reporter in the western region of Megrelia.“We hope the authorities will take these attacks seriously,” the press freedom organisation said. “Journalists should not have to suffer because of the polarisation of Georgian society during elections. People should understood that journalists do not act on behalf of the government or the opposition, they are observers who act in the general interest.”Eliso Chapidze, a reporter for the Tbilisi-based daily Rezonansi, was attacked by several men who appeared to be ruling party activists while she was photographing a polling station in Kvemo Magaro, a village in Kakheti. “The accosted me when I began to take photos,” she said. “One twisted my hand. Another took my camera and my accreditation.”In an article in today’s issue of her newspaper, Chapidze said she was questioned for three hours at the local police station when she went to report the attack, and was threatened with reprisals if she wrote about the incident.Reporter Aleko Gabunia and cameraman Nikoloz Pataraya of the Mze television station and a Rustavi 2 cameraman were attacked while covering an incident in the village of Rukhi, in Megrelia, involving members of the electoral commission and a candidate, Koba Davitashvili. Unidentified individuals pushed the Rustavi 2 cameraman to the ground, causing his camera to break. The Mze crew filmed this, but they were then beaten by about 30 people. Pataraya sustained a gash to his hand, while Gabunia was hit on the head and legs. Gabunia said there was little left of their equipment.In a separate incident in the Megrelia region, reporter Nana Pajava was insulted and hit several times by electoral commission members when she asked about a complaint that had been made by a government opponent. She reported the attack to the authorities and said she knew the identity of her assailants.The police issued press statements about these attacks and said they would investigate. Organisation Concern about alleged plot to murder Georgian TV host RSF_en News Mounting pressure on Georgia’s media in run-up to elections Follow the news on Georgia Help by sharing this information GeorgiaEurope – Central Asia Newscenter_img News May 23, 2008 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Several attacks on journalists during parliamentary elections October 1, 2020 Find out more At least five journalists attacked while covering Georgia’s election campaign June 18, 2020 Find out more Receive email alerts July 20, 2020 Find out more to go further GeorgiaEurope – Central Asia last_img read more

As Heavy Rains Disrupt Life In Mumbai, Bombay HC Suspend All Hearings For The Day Facing Staff Shortage [Read Notice]

first_imgNews UpdatesAs Heavy Rains Disrupt Life In Mumbai, Bombay HC Suspend All Hearings For The Day Facing Staff Shortage [Read Notice] Nitish Kashyap4 Aug 2020 2:16 AMShare This – xAs the India Meteorological Department had forecasted, heavy rains hit various parts of Mumbai last night and continued throughout the night, thereby disrupting public transport like buses and trains. As a result, there was acute shortage of court staff at the Bombay High Court and now it has been decided to suspend all hearings scheduled for today via video conferencing. Those matters on…Your free access to Live Law has expiredTo read the article, get a premium account.Your Subscription Supports Independent JournalismSubscription starts from ₹ 599+GST (For 6 Months)View PlansPremium account gives you:Unlimited access to Live Law Archives, Weekly/Monthly Digest, Exclusive Notifications, Comments.Reading experience of Ad Free Version, Petition Copies, Judgement/Order Copies.Subscribe NowAlready a subscriber?LoginAs the India Meteorological Department had forecasted, heavy rains hit various parts of Mumbai last night and continued throughout the night, thereby disrupting public transport like buses and trains. As a result, there was acute shortage of court staff at the Bombay High Court and now it has been decided to suspend all hearings scheduled for today via video conferencing. Those matters on the board today will be taken up for hearing tomorrowClick Here To Download Notice[Read Notice]Subscribe to LiveLaw, enjoy Ad free version and other unlimited features, just INR 599 Click here to Subscribe. All payment options available.loading….Next Storylast_img read more

Geocaching Alter Egos: TheVillains!

first_imgTheVillainsSome people pack a GPS device or smartphone, a pen and some gear to hit the geocaching trail. Mr. and Mrs. Mysterious who geocache under the team name TheVillains also pack mustaches, sunglasses, and comic books. Their geocaching alter ego is all about spreading the joy of evil geocaching. Their logs and cache pages are populated with quotes like this, “Horrible Hunting…. Muhahahahahahaha!!!!”When asked by “How evil is your evil geocaching?” Mr. and Mrs. Mysterious simply replied, “Very.”TheVillains humble beginningsTheVillains beginnings are humble enough. They started geocaching in February of this year. Mr. and Mrs. Mysterious write, “Well it all started with comic books. We wanted to leave a trademark item and we decided that comic books were awesome and so were the villains in them. So we decided to become villains ourselves with awesome disguises and take over the world of geocaching.”Like all great comic book villains, the geocaching team has a simple, yet universal villain goal. They say, “Our goal is to dominate the world of geocaching by finding every single geocache in the world!!!! So one day your own geocache will be dominated by TheVillains!!!!! BEWARE!!!!! We also leave every geocache with our calling card and a villainous comic book (if it fits).”They’ve definitely left a mustachioed mark on their geocaching community. They write, “We get a few emails from other geocachers after finding their ‘difficult’ geocaches, challenging us to find others. We also have quite a fan base, and get photos of people who have found our own geocaches… or not… posing as if they had a cool mustache like our own.”TheVillains cache page log photosWith their alter egos TheVillains injected some… well… theatrical, villainous flare into the Southern California geocaching scene. They even square off against arch enemies.Mr. and Mrs. Mysterious write, “We published our most well know geocache Mrs. Mysterious’s Mustaches (GC316RZ) where there is a series of false geocaches that when you find them, they have similar logos to our own, but the wrong mustache! We got a message from a fellow geocacher saying that she recently published a cache nearby and it was just found by our arch nemesis’s BBsquared and Spoons1 and that they are probably on their way to ours to be the FTF right now!”It’s at this point where the evil geocaching duo sprang into action. They say, “So we put on our disguises and jumped in the car and drove over. Sure enough, there they were crawling under bushes and looking in trees trying to find our cache. We rolled down the window, they recognized us obviously, and we gave them a few foreboding hints leading them in the wrong direction and drove off with a Muhahahahahaha!!! It took them over an hour to find it.”TheVillains, the next generationBBsquared logged the cache and wrote, “We hopped like bunnies, searched in trees, TheVillains stopped by and laughed at me. We searched and looked and laughed, our clothes are pretty dirty but Spoons1 and I weren’t leaving until we logged a smiley. T4T [thanks for the] very devious and horrible $ – Muhahahahahahahahahahahahaha.” He finished by saying, “Happy – errrr I mean Horrible hunting.”TheVillains are still in their first year of geocaching, they’re gaining notoriety and a following. The photo to the left was fresh crops of villains was recently uploaded on their Facebook page.Even TheVillains mustaches are open to change. “We have been through a plethora of mustaches we recently grew these new handle bar ones, what do think? But we are always looking for new styles. But as far as costume changes go, we are sticking with the glasses and ‘stashes as our trademark logo shows.”TheVillains at a night-cacheIf you’re thinking about a career in evil geocaching, or creating an alter ego in your geocaching community, TheVillians have advice. “We can always use more henchmen…. But really, just be creative. No one likes finding lame geocaches, try to make everything you do interesting and create a theme, maybe one day you can be as cool as us….. not…..”Then they signed their email with their trademark sign off, “Horrible Hunting,- TheVillains” Share with your Friends:More SharePrint RelatedHow to Speak Geocaching – A Mega-Event Journey to GermanyAugust 5, 2014In “Community”Fun with a Side of Mega-Event GeocachingSeptember 13, 2013In “Cache In Trash Out”Ain’t no Mountain High Enough… for Geocachers – Interview with Team GCTransAlpsJune 8, 2015In “15 Years”last_img read more

Salt Lake City gets go-ahead to bid for Winter Olympics

first_imgFILE – This Feb. 8, 2002, file photo, shows U.S. champion Michelle Kwan practicing for the women’s short program for the Winter Olympic Games at the Salt lake Ice Center in Salt Lake City. Salt Lake City got the green light to bid for an upcoming Winter Olympics most likely for 2030 in an attempt to bring the Games back to the city that hosted in 2002 and provided the backdrop for the U.S. winter team’s ascendance into an international powerhouse. (AP Photo/Doug Mills, file)Salt Lake City got the green light to bid for the Winter Olympics — most likely for 2030 — in an attempt to bring the Games back to the city that hosted in 2002 and provided the backdrop for the U.S. winter team’s ascendance into an international powerhouse.The U.S. Olympic Committee said Friday it was selecting Utah’s capital, which stood out as a predictable, slam-dunk pick in a process that also included Denver and Reno, Nevada.ADVERTISEMENT LATEST STORIES PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games PLAY LIST 02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting MOST READ LOOK: Joyce Pring goes public with engagement to Juancho Triviño SEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completion Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Is Luis Manzano planning to propose to Jessy Mendiola? With venues still in place — some of them upgraded — from the 2002 Games, Salt Lake claims it can host again at a lower cost than other candidates, which aligns with the International Olympic Committee’s new blueprint for the Games.It’s almost a certain bet the bid will be for 2030, though the USOC left open the possibility of other dates. There are only two bidders for 2026: from Sweden and Italy, after voters in Calgary, Alberta, rejected a proposed bid.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSUrgent reply from Philippine ‍football chiefUSOC CEO Sarah Hirshland said Denver and Salt Lake City both presented strong cases, but that the board determined Utah was the better choice due in part to the existing venues, their proximity to each other, the city’s experience hosting the games and widespread community and political support. She said it minimizes the risk.“It is critical to ensure that we have the ability to create an incredible experience for athletes while at the same time managing sustainability and fiscal responsibility,” Hirshland said. “It was clear to us when we were there and in what they presented that Salt Lake City very much understands the practical realities of hosting a Games, but also wants and supports what they represent.” Lacson: 2019 budget delay due to P75-B House ‘insertion’ Rob Cohen, chair of Denver’s Olympic bid committee, called it disappointing that Colorado lost out on the chance to bid but said the process prepared the city as it looks for other chances to showcase the city on the world stage.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next In many parts of the United States, however, the 2002 Games in Salt Lake City are remembered not for the bribery scandal but for a different reason.After never surpassing 13 medals at a Winter Games, the U.S. used home-turf advantage, an influx of new sports and the emotion of the recent Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks to capture 34 over three weeks in Utah.In the aftermath, Park City and other mountain towns near Salt Lake City preserved and improved upon many of the venues, and continued hosting key international events. The freestyle world championships will be held in Park City in February.Utah organizers say they could host the games for $1.35 billion, some $50 billion less than it cost in Russia for the 2014 Sochi Games, which are the most expensive games ever and stood out as a blaring warning signal that the IOC needed to streamline its bloated Olympic structure.The exorbitant costs have changed the dynamic of Olympic bidding. In 2002, cities were trying to bribe IOC officials to award them the Olympics. These days, the IOC finds itself wanting for bidders.The IOC normally awards Olympics seven years before they’re scheduled, though that calendar has been in flux because so many cities have dropped out.Last year, the IOC handed out the 2024 and 2028 Summer Games at the same time because there were only two cities left in what began as a much bigger contest for 2024. Paris will host 2024, Los Angeles will host 2028, and if Salt Lake wins 2030, it would mark the first time since the IOC began staggering the Games two years apart, in 1994, that the same country has hosted back-to-back.At this time, Salt Lake could be considered a favorite in a 2030 contest that hasn’t really taken shape yet.Hirshland said the USOC has the luxury of time to refine Salt Lake City’s bid.In fact, Salt Lake could still be a favorite for 2026 had it been allowed to go that route. Recently, voters in Calgary rejected that city’s attempt to host, leaving Stockholm and a joint bid from Milan and Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy as the only two remaining candidates. A bid from Utah was considered, but putting it in front of the Los Angeles Olympics provided too many hurdles on the marketing side. Hotel management clarifies SEAG footballers’ kikiam breakfast issue TS Kammuri to enter PAR possibly a day after SEA Games opening The city’s selection set off celebration at the mayor’s office where local leaders who worked on the plan gathered. Since 2012, Utah has said it’s ready and willing to host another Olympics.One key hurdle for Salt Lake City will be erasing memories of the bidding scandal that marred the buildup to 2002 and resulted in several IOC members losing their positions for taking bribes.Mitt Romney was brought in to steer the games through the scandal. The newly elected U.S. Senator for Utah told The Associated Press after the announcement that a series of processes put in place by the IOC will ensure no bribery scandal happens again.Romney said Salt Lake City should have a great chance at winning the bid from the IOC because it has shown it can host the games without losing money. Salt Lake City ended up with a surplus after the 2002 Games, money he used to help maintain venues it will use again if it’s awarded the Olympics.“We learned how to produce the Games for the same cost as the revenue that came in,” Romney said. “We will not put a glitzy show like Sochi or Beijing, that are reported to have cost as much $50 billion. We will show the world that you can produce an Olympics without having the government writing the checks.”ADVERTISEMENT SEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completion Steph Curry, Klay Thompson help Warriors beat Kings View commentslast_img read more

10 months agoReal Madrid captain Sergio Ramos: Never write us off

first_imgReal Madrid captain Sergio Ramos: Never write us offby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveReal Madrid captain Sergio Ramos insists they have plenty to fight for this season after winning the Club World Cup final.Ramos shone for the 4-1 victory over Al Ain last night.”We achieved a goal that we had set. It is the prize of having won the Champions League, we wanted to finish the year with the third consecutive Club World Cup and after getting it it’s time to rest a few days to come back stronger,” he told TVE. “In all competitions we are very happy, Real Madrid cannot be considered dead because in the end we will be up there fighting for all the titles.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

10 months agoPrem trio join race for Barcelona midfielder Denis Suarez

first_imgPrem trio join race for Barcelona midfielder Denis Suarezby Ansser Sadiq10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveDenis Suarez is not short on suitors.The Barcelona midfielder, who is unhappy at what little playing time he has received, is being linked with a loan move in the transfer window.And Sport claims that three English clubs have an interest.West Ham, Everton and Watford are the teams mentioned.An earlier report in the BBC had suggested that Arsenal may also look at Suarez as a short term option, should they lose Aaron Ramsey this month.Sport also suggests Barca would prefer a permanent transfer with a fee higher than €10 million. TagsTransfersAbout the authorAnsser SadiqShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

The College Football Programs Whose Recruiting Rankings Improved The Most From 2014 To 2015

first_imgFor most programs and their fans, National Signing Day is Christmas come early. Each team adds a few dozen players who are coming off of illustrious high school careers. Most are either lauded by the various recruiting services or deemed “underrated” by the fans. While these major recruiting sites—Scout, Rivals, 247Sports, and ESPN—can never evaluate every kid perfectly, studies have shown that the teams that consistently pull it blue chip talent are the ones that compete for national championships. SB Nation’s Bud Elliott wrote a great feature about this last February: As recruiting rankings continue to grow more accurate, they’re now to a point at which they can help tell us which teams are ready to compete for titles. Every BCS champion since recruiting rankings could be accurately tracked (2005, or four classes after Scout joined Rivals in rating players) has met a benchmark: it’s recruited more blue-chips (four- and five-star players) than lesser-rated players over its four previous signing classes.So, which programs have improved their recruiting the most from 2014 to 2015? Which have fallen off? Based on 247 Sports’ useful composite rankings, which use the ratings applied to each player from the four recruiting services, here are the 23 power conference teams whose recruiting rankings have improved the most.coloradoT-19. Colorado2014 Composite: 742015 Composite: 69Difference: +5As a program, Colorado has been wandering through the desert for years now. 2014 didn’t see a big difference in the Buffaloes’ win-loss record at 2-10, but Mike MacIntyre’s team was more competitive on the field. The Buffs took UCLA to double-overtime, eventually falling 40-37, and did the same in a total shootout against Cal, where they eventually fell 59-56. They also put up pretty respectable performances against Arizona State, Oregon State, Washington, and Utah. While the gains in recruiting weren’t substantial, Colorado did keep talented four star lineman Tim Lynott home. He was one of four of the top six recruits in the state to choose to play for CU. The Buffs also went into California to pull out talented outside linebacker Nu’umotu Falo. Colorado’s class isn’t huge at 19 players, which hurts its total ranking a bit, but it is a step in the right direction for a team that hopes to finally exit the rebuild stage over the next few years.purdueT-19. Purdue2014 Composite: 692015 Composite: 64Difference: +5Purdue’s recruiting class ranks last in the Big Ten, but the Boilermakers are encroaching on Minnesota and Iowa, and don’t have winning seasons to fall back on like those schools. Purdue only has four wins in the first two seasons under Darrell Hazell, with only one coming in Big Ten play. Former coach Danny Hope had a bit more success late in his tenure, making back to back bowls in 2011 and 2012, but two of his classes ranked 70th or worse. Hazell is digging out of a big hole, and hasn’t had a ton of immediate success, but the deck was stacked against him, which makes it less surprising if he gets a bit of extra leeway at Purdue.wsuT-19. Washington State2014 Composite: 542015 Composite: 49Difference: +5With Mike Leach on the sideline and Connor Halliday under center, Washington State had one of the most prolific offenses in the country in 2014. The Cougars were No. 1 in the nation in passing offense at 477.7 yards per game, and 117th in points against at 38.6 per game. While some don’t believe that Leach cares much about defense, this 2015 recruiting class says something different. Wazzu’s lone four-star player Thomas Toki plays defensive tackle, and is one of 11 Cougar commits on that side of the ball. According to 247 Sports, seven of the Cougs’ nine top recruits play on defense. While bringing a top 50 class to Pullman and improving on last year’s class is a good thing, if Washington State can start to build that defense, it will not be a fun group to play.nebraskaT-19. Nebraska2014 Composite: 362015: Composite: 31Difference: +5Coaching changes almost always have an immediate impact on recruiting. Occasionally, it takes a year for excitement about a new coach to result in improvement, but new Nebraska coach Mike Riley actually improved on Bo Pelini’s final class right away. The program has a pair of four-star early enrollees from Colorado in cornerbacks Eric Lee and Avery Anderson, and picked up a top ten guard in four star Jalin Barnett. Nebraska is not a state rich with high school football talent, which makes recruiting for the Huskers a bit tricky, but Riley did a very nice job dipping into Texas, Oklahoma, and even out to California and the Southeast for quality players.oregonT-19. Oregon2014 Composite: 212015 Composite: 16Difference: +5There is a pocket of the Oregon fanbase that is not yet sold on head coach Mark Helfrich, at least when compared to his predecessor Chip Kelly, but he has done a great job of maintaining Oregon’s high level of recruiting, despite the fact that the state produces very few FBS caliber players. Oregon plucked players from eight different states, and it leaves no stones unturned. The Ducks are bringing in players from California, Georgia, Hawaii, and Minnesota—their recruiting profile is about as varied as any team can get. Headlining this impressive class are five-star defensive end Canton Kaumatule from Honolulu, who should be a force against both the run and the pass at 6-foot-7, 290-pounds, and dual-threat quarterback Travis Waller from Anaheim.arkansasT-17. Arkansas2014 Composite: 292015 Composite: 23Difference: +6Since shutting out LSU 17-0 on November 15, Arkansas has been on a roll. The Razorbacks followed that up with an even more impressive 30-0 win over Ole Miss, narrowly lost to SEC East champion Missouri, and then destroyed Texas in the Texas Bowl, 31-7. In mid-October, it didn’t look like Arkansas would make a bowl. Now, the team has a ton of momentum, and took it into the end of this recruiting cycle. The Hogs had five blue chip players enroll early, including pro style quarterback Ty Storey from in state. Arkansas has also added a couple of four star defensive linemen, and two top tight ends, which should help round out Bret Bielema’s run-heavy offense a bit. Amazingly, Arkansas’ class only ranks 11th in the SEC, but it should help them stay competitive in the SEC West, college football’s toughest division. Next: Programs Ranked 17-12 >>>Pages: Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Page 5last_img read more

New app could help NB doctors take the guesswork out of diagnosing

first_imgMONCTON, N.B. – A professor of clinical neuropsychology at the University of Moncton says a computer application she developed could help doctors better predict the risk of dementia — and take some of the pressure off New Brunswick’s medical system.Sarah Pakzad has spent the last seven years researching and working on the Neurocognitive Frailty Index, which would help healthcare professionals guide patients through tests that would assess risk factors for dementia.She said all too often, patients who are at a low risk for dementia are put on a waiting list to see a specialist, clogging up resources and taking time away from patients who are at a higher risk.“It’s going to help family physicians and nurse practitioners to help distinguish the patients who are at risk, or high risk, of developing dementia, in comparison with those who have a low risk but have similar symptoms,” said Pakzad.She said memory problems can be a symptom of mental health disorders like anxiety and depression, so it’s difficult to gauge whether or not someone is at risk for dementia based on that symptom alone.The index draws information from a database of over 25,000 patients over the age of 50 and would produce a percentage probability of the patient developing dementia.Pakzad said the index is more than 90 per cent accurate.“This is the first time we have an index that’s reliable, useful, and easy to work with,” she said.Pakzad hopes to finish the app’s design within the next year.In her research, she surveyed 800 family physicians in New Brunswick about how they deal with patients who may have dementia.Many doctors told her they’re ill-equipped to diagnose dementia and don’t know what to do when people complain about memory and cognitive issues.She said this creates frustration for patients, some of whom may have spent hours in a waiting room.“Often they are hearing, ‘No, no, that’s okay, when you’re getting old, it’s just normal to have memory problems,’” she said, adding “No, that’s not okay.”Bruno Battistini, CEO and scientific director of the New Brunswick Health Research Foundation, which provided much of the funding for the project, said this is a big gap in the province’s health-care system.“Medical doctors don’t have, necessarily, the training … to do what we call cognitive assessments,” he said. “This is a more specialized thing done by a geriatrician.”He said the issue lies in the fact that there’s only one geriatrician per 100,000 people in New Brunswick.Battistini hopes the app will help unclog waiting lists for people in search of a specialist by ruling out those who are at a low risk of dementia.New Brunswick Medical Society CEO Anthony Knight said supports for patients with dementia exist in New Brunswick, but the system is struggling to keep up with the demand.“It’s a growing trend, the diagnosis of dementia, among seniors and other individuals. Our nursing home system is strained, for sure, to manage the complexities associated with dementia care,” he said.It will still be a while before the application will be available for doctors to use, but Pakzad said she’s looking forward to seeing what healthcare professionals think.last_img read more