-Andy examines the slow starts — how bad they really are and what can be done about them. “The only thing I can think of right now is we’ve got to come out and make it a point of emphasis right from the get-go,” quarterback Logan Thomas says. “Come out and play as hard as possible, physical and just take care of the small things. Because those are the ones, the small things, that will pick up those first downs. Once you pick up first downs, it builds the confidence and gets things going.”
-Andy will have a live chat at 12:30 p.m. today. Join in here.
-Phillip Sims talks about taking over the starting QB job at Virginia.
“It does help that you know you’re going to be the guy who takes the first snap,” Sims says. “Anything can happen after that. You’ve got to prepare the same every week, whether you’re the starter or not.
“It allows me to get a couple extra reps in practice. That’s pretty much all that’s guaranteed. It doesn’t mean very much to say you’re the starter, other than a title beside your name.”
That actually ought to be a pretty interesting game at Duke on Saturday. Devils a 2-point favorite.
-As mentioned here yesterday afternoon, the league is sticking with an eight-game football schedule and not the nine-gamer originally planned.
-With a .330 average, 44 home runs and 139 RBI, Miguel Cabrera becomes the first player in 45 years to achieve the Triple Crown. “I don’t believe this happened right now,” the Tigers star says. “I didn’t believe three weeks ago it was going to happen. I didn’t believe this was possible. But you always dream. Thank God I got an opportunity for this dream to come true.”
-The A’s complete their remarkable rally from 13 games back in the AL West, beating the Rangers 12-5 to win the crown by one game.
-Yankees maul the Red Sox 14-2 to win the AL East crown by two games over the O’s, who fall at Tampa Bay 4-1. The loss is costly for Baltimore, which now will have to travel to Texas for Friday’s Wild Card game (8:37 p.m., TBS)
-The Nationals lock up the top seed in the NL with a win over the Phillies. They await the Braves-Cardinals winner.
-Teddy Roosevelt wins the presidents race for the first time at Nats Park.
-A’s and Tigers will open their division series at 6 p.m. Saturday on TBS. The Yankees will face the Orioles-Rangers winner.
-The Reds and Giants start their series at 9:37 p.m. Saturday on TBS.
-Red Sox will fire skipper Bobby Valentine.
-The league will now fine players for flopping. “Flops have no place in our game – they either fool referees into calling undeserved fouls or fool fans into thinking the referees missed a foul call,” NBA exec Stu Jackson says.
MORE COLLEGE FOOTBALL
-Al Groh’s defense at Georgia Tech has been getting roasted. “You walk [a] line,” head coach Paul Johnson says. “When you hire somebody to do something, you want to give them the opportunity to do it. I don’t want them to feel like I’m handcuffing them. If you’re going to hold him accountable, you’ve got to give him some leeway to do it how he wants to do it.”
-Berman breaks down the ACC matchups and games involving local teams here.
-Star Georgia wideout Michael Bennett tore his ACL in practice Tuesday and will miss the rest of the season.