<![CDATA[NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth - Dallas-Fort Worth Sports News, Analysis, and Scores for the Giants, Jets. Patriots, Huskies, Knicks and More]]> Copyright 2015 http://www.nbcdfw.com/news/sports http://media.nbcbayarea.com/designimages/NBC+5-KXAS+Logo+for+Google+News.png NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth http://www.nbcdfw.com en-us Wed, 02 Sep 2015 19:23:48 -0500 Wed, 02 Sep 2015 19:23:48 -0500 NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[New Logo for Cotton Bowl Classic ]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 19:11:18 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/cotton+bowl+gfx-+new.jpg

Officials of the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic unveiled the new look for the College Football Playoff Semifinal.

Since the 80th Cotton Bowl is on New Year's Eve, the new look shows fireworks over AT&T Stadium to form an abstract version of a cotton boll.

“This is going to be a very special year for the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic, and we wanted a new primary graphic that personifies the grandeur of this special game and the celebratory atmosphere we have planned for our first College Football Playoff Semifinal at the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic,” said Rick Baker, CBAA President/CEO.

The Dallas-based brand agency, Torch Creative, collaborated with the Classic to develop and design this year's look.

Photo Credit: @CottonBowlGame, via Twitter]]>
<![CDATA[Who's On, Who's Not?: Sept. 2]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 14:02:58 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/482880418.jpg

In a weekly staple, we'll discuss who's in a groove and who's in a rut for the Texas Rangers.

Who's On?

Elvis Andrus — Andrus stole home on Tuesday night for one of the more exciting plays of the Rangers' season so far, but he's done much more than that lately. He's hitting above .300 since the all-star break, and over his last seven games is batting .333 with a double, triple and three RBIs to go with four stolen bases.

Adrian Beltre — After cooling off a bit, Beltre is hot again. The veteran third baseman is batting .360 over his last seven games with two home runs and five RBIs.

Shin-Soo Choo — Choo is hitting .313 with two doubles, a home run and he has six RBIs in his last seven games, which leads the team in that span.

Cole Hamels — Hamels is looking to follow up his best outing as a Ranger last time out when he allowed one run in eight innings of work while striking out 10 batters.

Who's Off?

Mitch Moreland — In his last six games, Moreland is batting just .235 with no extra-base hits in his last six games, the last two of which weren't starts with Prince Fielder getting the nod at first base under National League rules.

Shawn Tolleson — Tolleson has worked a lot lately, and it's beginning to show. In his last four appearances, he's given up two runs on five hits and an alarming three walks.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Cowboys Secondary Feeling Benefits of Upgraded Pass Rush ]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 13:54:13 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/brandon-carr-2015-preseason.jpg

This offseason, the Dallas Cowboys devoted a good deal of effort to shoring up the pass rush, with additions like Greg Hardy and Randy Gregory. The members of the secondary are already feeling the effects of those efforts.

Defensive end Jeremy Mincey recalled cornerback Brandon Carr speaking to him on the sidelines at AT&T Stadium after giving up a 39-yard reception to Mike Wallace during the first half of the preseason loss to the Vikings on Saturday night.

“He was telling me, ‘If I knew you guys were going to get there that fast, I would’ve played off,’” Mincey said, per Todd Archer of ESPN Dallas.

After the game, Carr was full of praise for the men up front, and why not? A better pass rush means less pressure on the secondary and, potentially, a sense of freedom among those corners and safeties to make plays.

“Yeah, we see it,” Carr said. “The guys have the will to get off the ball, man. They want to get to that quarterback. Coach [Rod] Marinelli and his defensive line staff are doing a great job getting those guys motivated each and every day to be their best at all times. The rush and coverage go hand in hand. We need the guys up front to get after the quarterback. On the back end, we’ve got to hold our own as well.”

<![CDATA[Rayfield Wright: "Any Running Back" Could Flourish Behind Dallas Line]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 13:32:57 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/rayfield-wright4.25.12.jpg

We can safely assume Hall of Fame offensive lineman Rayfield Wright thinks the Cowboys will be just fine in the absence of reigning rushing champion DeMarco Murray, who left for the Philadelphia Eagles in free agency back in March.

According to Brandon George of the Dallas Morning News, Wright was one of around 50 former players in attendance at Monday’s practice at AT&T Stadium. While there, he had some very high praise for the current line, suggesting that they’re so good, in fact, that it doesn’t really matter who’s running behind them.

“If you played behind our line in the 70s or Troy [Aikman’s] line in the 90s or this line right here that’s being developed now, any running back can run the ball,” Wright said. “This offensive line is developing into a great offensive line. They just need to stay healthy.”

So with such a strong offensive line, are the Cowboys Super Bowl contenders?

“Yes, with this offensive line,” Wright said. “Now, if everybody will do their job, we can get there. That’s what I like about it.”

<![CDATA[Scandrick Heads to IR in Wave of Roster Moves]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 13:02:54 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/scandrick-injured.jpg

Among the roster moves made by the Dallas Cowboys on Tuesday, as they trimmed the roster to the NFL-mandated 75 before Thursday’s preseason finale against the Texans in Arlington, Orlando Scandrick officially headed to the season-ending Injured Reserve list.

They also put third round pick, offensive lineman Chaz Green, on the physically unable to perform list, and seventh round pick Mark Nzeocha on the Non-Football Injury list. Defensive end Kenneth Boatright, tackle R.J. Dill and running back Michael Hill were waived/injured. Tight end Brandon Barden, linebacker Jonathan Brown, receiver Antwan Goodley and receiver David Porter were waived outright.

Last Thursday, Scandrick had successful surgery in Dallas to repair the torn anterior cruciate ligament and medial collateral ligament in his right knee.

Orlando is a person who we care a great deal about,” Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett said last week, via the Dallas Morning News. "The coaches care about him, his teammates care about him. He’s going through a hard time. That’s challenging for him. We’re going to be there for him. We’re going to be there for him every single day. I told him (Tuesday) he’s a young man, he’s a great athlete, he has a great feistiness and fight to him, so he’s going to come back better and stronger than ever. OK?

"We’re not leaving Orlando. We’re with Orlando. He’s with us. But now you have to focus on what is the task at hand. You’ve got to figure out who is going to play in his spot, what kind of competition you’re going to try to create and what we need to do as a team. There are parallel lines. We do them both."

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Cowboys Leave the Door Open on Idea of Adding "Young Back"]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 12:35:06 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-485755072.jpg

The Dallas Cowboys have appeared poised to stand pat at the running back position pretty much all offseason, but in a radio interview this week, executive vice president and C.O.O. Stephen Jones wouldn’t close the door on the idea of adding a “young back” to the roster if the circumstances are right.

We got three backs here that we like a lot,” Jones told G-Bag Nation on 105.3-FM The Fan, via the Dallas Morning News. “If we saw a young back to add to the mix, we’d certainly look at it. But what we’ve seen on the wires so far, we’re pretty content with what we got. That doesn’t mean that won’t change here in the next week or so.”

There’s been a lot of talk about the crop of veteran free agent backs in North Texas, guys like Chris Johnson (who ended up signing with the Cardinals), Steven Jackson and, this week, longtime Bills running back Fred Jackson--but in every case, the Cowboys have been quick to say they’re happy at the position.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Tyron Smith Named 2nd Best Player Under 25 in ESPN Ranking]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 12:12:49 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/tyron-smith-vs-broncos.jpg

As you might have noticed, the Dallas Cowboys have drafted some good young offensive linemen of recent.

The remodel job up front started in 2011, when they took Tyron Smith out of USC with the 9th overall pick of the draft to be their left tackle of the future. In 2013, it was center Travis Frederick out of Wisconsin and, last year, right guard Zack Martin out of Notre Dame.

According to a recent ranking by ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr. and Mike Sando, all three first rounders are among the Top 25 players in the league under the age of 25--and Smith is the second best of that bunch, behind only Raiders second-year linebacker Khalil Mack.

Every aspect of the position appears to be a strength for Smith,” Kiper wrote about Smith, via the Dallas Morning News. “He’s technically sound and physically lean and long-armed; he’s savvy enough to set up opponents and athletic enough to pull on the perimeter; he’s devastating as a finisher and patient as a pass-protector. Smith has, on occasion, driven defenders off the all-22 video screen entirely. Smith also plays a position of importance, putting him in the running for the top spot. He looks like a Hall of Fame talent.”

<![CDATA[Unlikely Gachkar Could Fill Cowboys MLB Hole]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 12:12:13 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/180*120/081715+Vic+Cowboys+09.JPG

Because of suspensions, injuries and surprises, the Cowboys’ starting middle linebacker Sept. 13 against the Giants just might be a guy who has never played the position.

Andrew Gachkar, front and center. And, yes, middle.

With Rolando McClain suspended the first four games and Anthony Hitchens out with a sprained foot, it appears that the free agent signed mostly for his special teams acumen just might be the Cowboys’ starter in Week 1. He started there last week against the Vikings and had five tackles. That, after most of training camp playing on the strong and/or weak sides of the defense.

The Cowboys’ hope is that Hitchens heals in time for the opener. Kyle Wilber is an option, as he started in the middle against the 49ers. And, of course, they have a pretty good fallback option in Sean Lee.

But in a pinch, Gachkar has proven he can at least temporary fill the middle. He was signed in March as a backup to all three linebacker spots, as well has his play on special teams.

“Until you get a guy here and you put him in those spots, you never really know,” head coach Jason Garrett said of Gachkar. “And that game the other night was a good game for him, to play Mike linebacker and be as productive as he was, and really look as natural and as comfortable as he did, I thought that was really important in the game. Sometimes a guy will take some plays, but then if you look at the whole body of work across the game, it was like, ‘Boy, he didn’t really have an understanding there, he kind of missed the gap there.’ I don’t know that we had very many of those, so I thought it was an impressive performance.”

A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.

Photo Credit: Victor Dominguez, NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Hamels Due for Something Special Tuesday]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 12:37:42 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/485015006.jpg

Cole Hamels has pitched in plenty of big, meaningful games in his career, and he'll have another on Wednesday night when the Rangers look to win a series in September against a team they should win series from, and in turn, keep the pressure on Houston, Los Angeles and Minnesota.

Looking back on Hamels' recent outings, it's pretty clear he's in for something special as he returns to his hometown of San Diego to face the revamped Padres. Hamels has been great at Petco Park in his career with eight starts under his belt, compiling a 5-1 record and a 1.78 ERA.

But all of that is only a portion of the reason you should be excited for what's to come in the rubber game of the series.

Want a reason to get really fired up for Hamels' sixth start as a Ranger tonight? Look no further than his last six starts.

Of course, we all know his last start before the big trade to Texas was his first career no-hitter against the Cubs. Then, he was dealt to Texas and his first five outings in a Rangers uniform went like this: five earned runs allowed, four earned runs allowed, three earned runs allowed, two earned runs allowed and most recently one earned run allowed in an eight-inning gem against the Orioles.

Will Hamels throw a no-hitter on Tuesday night? That's impossible to say. But will he have a scoreless outing? Well, let Ron Burgandy answer that for you...

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Ripples From Jordan Disrespecting Mavs Continue to Flow]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 12:09:27 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-473780146.jpg

I know, DeAndre Jordan won’t play for the Mavs in 2016. But another week, and another shred of evidence that the reasons for his absence were illegal and unsavory.

Last week the NBA fined the Clippers for improperly recruiting Jordan during his about-face from the Mavs and to the Clippers.  Now, as a hint that the whole episode was ugly for everyone involved, Jordan has fired his agent.

According to the Los Angeles Times, Jordan this week fired his representatives at Relativity Sports, namely agent Dan Fegan. He’s also the agent for Chandler Parsons, and at times during his career also represented Jason Kidd and Monta Ellis.

The Mavs – at least until recently – had such a good relationship with Fegan that some speculated their drafting of his client (Satnam Singh) was a goodwill gesture further paving the way for him to steer Jordan to Dallas.

Jordan, whom we now know is a bit of a nut job, has now been with three agents in seven years. And don’t shed too many tears for Relativity Sports, as the company will get four percent of the player’s $88 million contract with the Clippers.

I guess it's supposed to soothe our sore feelings that a team has been fined and an agent has been fired in the wake of the Mavs being left at the altar. But, nope, it doesn't. Every time they get outplayed at center next season it'll be a grim reminder of what we thought we had.

And somehow the Clippers and Fegan will surely survive this mess better than the Mavs. 

A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Dez to Star in Sunday Night Football Opening]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 12:42:18 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/dez-snf-opener.jpg

Dez Bryant will join 10 other NFL players and country music superstar Carrie Underwood for her performance of "Waiting All Day for Sunday Night," the opening theme for prime-time television's No. 1 program — Sunday Night Football on NBC.

The opener will debut Sept. 13 when the defending NFC East Champion Dallas Cowboys host the New York Giants in Arlington.

In addition to Bryant, the opener will feature Odell Beckham, Jr (Giants), Kam Chancellor (Seahawks), Colin Kaepernick (49ers), Andrew Luck (Colts), Clay Matthews (Packers), DeMarco Murray (Eagles), Patrick Peterson (Cardinals), DeMarcus Ware (Broncos), J.J. Watt (Texans) and Russell Wilson (Seahawks).

Bryant said, "This has always been a dream," when asked about taking part in the opening last June during shooting.

Earlier this summer, NBC Sports Group produced for movie theaters a 2½-minute behind-the-scenes look at the making of this year's SNF open. The cinema spot was viewed on more than 19,000 movie screens in theaters nationwide. The behind-the-scenes cinema spot can be seen below.

In addition, with Sunday Night Football kicking off its 10th season in September, NBC Sports enlisted a 10-year-old reporter to interview NFL stars at this year's opening theme shoot. Click here for a link to the full piece.

Before the first Sunday night game of the NFL season, Underwood will appear on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon to share a sneak peek of the opener and perform her new single "Smoke Break."

Thurs. Sept. 10 — NFL Kickoff — Pittsburgh Steelers at New England Patriots
Sun. Sept. 13 — Week 1 — New York Giants at Dallas Cowboys
Sun. Sept. 20 — Week 2 — Seattle Seahawks at Green Bay Packers
Sun. Sept. 27 — Week 3 — Denver Broncos at Detroit Lions
Sun. Oct. 4 — Week 4 — Dallas Cowboys at New Orleans Saints
*Sun. Oct. 11 — Week 5 — San Francisco 49ers at New York Giants
*Sun. Oct. 18 — Week 6 — New England Patriots at Indianapolis Colts
*Sun. Oct. 25 — Week 7 — Philadelphia Eagles at Carolina Panthers
*Sun. Nov. 1 — Week 8 — Green Bay Packers at Denver Broncos
*Sun. Nov. 8 — Week 9 — Philadelphia Eagles at Dallas Cowboys
*Sun. Nov. 15 — Week 10 — Arizona Cardinals at Seattle Seahawks
*Sun. Nov. 22 — Week 11 — Kansas City Chiefs at San Diego Chargers
**Thurs. Nov. 26 — Week 12 — Chicago Bears at Green Bay Packers
*Sun. Nov. 29 — Week 12 — New England Patriots at Denver Broncos
*Sun. Dec. 6 — Week 13 — Indianapolis Colts at Pittsburgh Steelers
*Sun. Dec. 13 — Week 14 — Seattle Seahawks at Baltimore Ravens
*Sun. Dec. 20 — Week 15 — Cincinnati Bengals at San Francisco 49ers
*Sun. Dec. 27 — Week 16 — Pittsburgh Steelers at Baltimore Ravens
*Sun. Jan. 3 — Week 17 — TBD

*Flex Week
** Thanksgiving Night Game

Photo Credit: NBC Sports
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[Andrus Does it All in Night of Highlights]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 11:53:39 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-486194024.jpg

The Elvis Andrus we've seen since the all-star break has been the Andrus the Rangers thought they were getting when they gave him his big contract prior to the 2013 season.

On Tuesday night, Andrus really flashed his brilliance and was a human highlight reel at the plate, on the bases and with his glove in the Rangers' 8-6 win over San Diego to even up their series with the Padres that ends on Wednesday night.

Andrus had just one hit on Tuesday night, but it was a big one. With the bases full and two outs in a tie game, Andrus took an outside pitch and sent it into right field to break the tie and more after an error scored another run on what ended up being a two-run single turned three-run hit and an advancement to third base for Andrus.

After the Padres replaced an injured reliever, Andrus took full advantage when he caught the Padres' pitcher napping in his routine and executed a straight steal of home. That was amazing enough, but what was even more amazing was the fact he did it against a right-handed pitcher.

The next half-inning, Andrus started a key double play and then had one of his patented deep-in-the-hole, jump throws to first to cap off one of the most amazing innings by a single player in recent memory.

Since the break, Andrus has played in 43 games and is batting .302 with a .748 OPS to go with nine doubles and three homers with 21 RBIs.

That's the player the Rangers signed to a long-term deal, and on Tuesday night we caught a full glimpse of him.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Tolleson Looks Tired, Results Consistent With That Theory]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 12:40:18 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/482972650.jpg

Shawn Tolleson entered Tuesday night's game in the ninth inning with a four-run lead looking to even up a series with the Padres.

What resulted was concerning, as the Rangers' closer loaded the bases with no outs before eventually allowing two runs but escaping with an 8-6 win, continuing what's been an ever-increasing concern with Tolleson's crispness in the ninth inning.

There's one obvious factor, and that's Tolleson's work load. He's just three appearances shy of tying his career-high of 64 from 2014, and there's still more than a month to play this season. Tuesday's game was his eighth game to work in 11 days, which is a bit ridiculous for a closer.

With all that said, the results haven't been great and they haven't been easy and quick, either.

Tolleson's last clean inning of work came back on Aug. 23 against the Tigers. Since then, he's worked in five games, allowed six hits, five walks, four runs. He's struck out four.

It's not time to take Tolleson's job from him, especially in the thick of a pennant race. He doesn't deserve that yet. The biggest thing the Rangers need to do is rest him for a couple of days and let him catch his breath, but when you play as many close games as the Rangers do, that can be hard.

With new power arms like Sam Dyson and Jake Diekman and the resurgence of rookie Keone Kela, the Rangers have some other options for the end-game. It'd be fantastic if Tolleson could have Wednesday night off before Thursday's scheduled off-day so he can head to Los Angeles for what is going to be a pivotal series with the chance to bury their hated AL West rivals.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Fielder Sends Early Message to Doubters]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 11:26:14 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/480706712.jpg

There was a growing concern among Rangers fans that Prince Fielder just wasn't right. Maybe his cervical fusion procedure that zapped his 2014 season was catching up with him? Whatever the case, he wasn't driving the ball like he was at times this year.

Fielder's double on Monday night was his first extra-base hit since Aug. 15, and on Tuesday night he followed that up with a big boom.

In the first inning on Tuesday night, Fielder smashed a ball over the wall in dead center fielder in a park that is one of the league's most pitcher-friendly yards in the league. It was a smash. It was authoritative, and it was about 30 feet off the ground as it left the park in a hurry.

Fielder went 2-for-5 on Tuesday with the homer, two RBIs and two runs scored. It was only his fourth long ball since the all-star break after he hit 14 in the season's first half. If he can get right again and go on a tear, say like in May when he hit nine bombs with 28 RBIs and a .377 batting average, the Rangers are going to be in very good shape.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Elvis' Steal Home Among Most Underrated, Unique Feats]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 11:09:30 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/486194024.jpg

If you stayed up late last night to watch the Rangers beat the Padres, you were treated to one of the most fun, fascinating and fleeting plays in the game.

Much more rare than the no-hitter and the cycle, Elvis Andrus pulled off a successful straight steal of home plate.

How unique was his feat? In a sport that tracks and invents statistics for seemingly every play, non-play and hat adjustment of every game over every season, there is no official stat for steals of home plate. What Elvis gave us was a Unicorn beating Bigfoot in a race to the Star Trek Enterprise. So rare, it bordered upon mythical.

Even more impressive, it came against a right-handed pitcher. Who was working from the stretch. I know, sounds impossible. A pitcher pointed directly toward the runner only has to spot the runner, then calmly step and throw to the catcher for an easy tag. How can running 90 feet be faster than throwing 60 feet?

Sure there are steals of home plate, via the double-steal, a botched squeeze bunt or even a misplayed pick-off. But the straight steal is the most daring, wonderful and exciting play in the game. It takes guts to try it, timing to give it a chance and wheels to make it work. Speed plus savvy.

Throw in an oblivious pitcher and – voila – Elvis stole home.

In the 7th inning Andrus singled in a couple runs to extend Texas’ lead to 7-4. When San Diego inserted reliever Kevin Quackenbush, he knew it was the perfect time to gamble.

“First pitch, the guy actually takes a couple of seconds with his head down,” Andrus said. “The second time he did it, I said ‘Let’s try it. Let’s see what happens.’ ”

Inexplicably, Quackenbush put his head down as he slowly moved into his stretch. Before he looked up, Elvis was 2/3rds of the way to the plate. Visibly shaken, the pitcher quickly strode and threw to the plate but wide to the left side of home, allowing Andrus to slide safely under the tag.

Elvis has now stolen home four times in his career which, by today’s standards, makes him one of the industry experts. You want rare? There have been six no-hitters in baseball this season, including three last month. There have been four players hit for the cycle in 2015 including two Rangers.

But straight steals of home? Again, exact records are difficult to pinpoint because a successful steal is awarded to double-steals, botched squeeze attempts, etc. But as far I can tell Elvis is the first to successfully steal home this season. There were two in 2012, one in 2013 and none last year. The Red Sox, for example, have only had five successful straight steals of home since 2007. And from 2000-09, there were only 15 successful attempts.

The last Ranger other than Elvis to successfully steal home? Scarborough Green in 2000.

It’s a far cry from the days of big, windmill windups, when methodical and mechanical pitchers took so much time delivering to the plate that steals of home were commonplace. Ty Cobb stole home 54 times. Jackie Robinson 19 times. Even Babe Ruth turned the trick 10 times.

They say if you watch baseball long enough you’ll eventually see something new. Short of the Rangers winning their first World Series, Elvis’ straight steal of home will be the most rare and rewarding sight of the season.

A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Gallardo Loses Streak, Momentum]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 11:06:53 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-479839620.jpg

Yovani Gallardo was on quite a run heading into Tuesday night's start in San Diego, having put up two straight outings of zeroes on the scoreboard and getting through the sixth inning with no runs allowed against the best offense in baseball last week against Toronto.

On Tuesday, however, things turned sour for Gallardo against the Padres in a pitcher-friendly park he's pitched well in over his career as a National Leaguer with the Brewers.

Gallardo gave up four runs in five innings of work while allowing six hits, lasting 93 pitches and continuing his season-long trend of being inefficient, even when he's been at his best.

Gallardo got a no-decision when his offense had put him in position to pick up his 12th win of the season. He wasn't terrible, but he was barely average and it ended a pretty nice run for Gallardo, who was fantastic in five August starts.

He's probably the Rangers' No. 3 starter in a playoff series, so they need him to get back on track pretty quickly and finish the year like he was last month.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA["He Looks Terrific": Rick Carlise Talks About New Mavericks Point Guard Deron Williams]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 23:12:48 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Newy_Carlisle_Fan_Wish_1200x675_517679683775.jpg NBC 5 sports director Newy Scruggs talks with Mavericks head coach Rick Carlisle during Fan Wish, a Dallas-based company with Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo as an investor.]]> <![CDATA["Ripped And Ready": Donnie Nelson Talks Deron Williams And Mavericks]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 23:05:15 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Newy_Nelson_Fan_Wish_1200x675_517677635960.jpg NBC 5 sports director Newy Scruggs talks with Mavericks general manager Donnie Nelson during Fan Wish, a Dallas-based company with Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo as an investor.]]> <![CDATA[Jason Witten Talks About Expectations For The Cowboys This Season]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 22:59:22 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Newy_Witten_Fan_Wish_1200x675_517677635640.jpg NBC 5 sports director Newy Scruggs talks with Cowboys tight end Jason Witten about the upcoming season during Fan Wish, a Dallas-based company with Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo as an investor.]]> <![CDATA[Fighter Ronda Rousey Accepts NJ Marine's Ball Invite]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 10:17:34 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-480821508.jpg

Ronda Rousey said she'd take a night off from kicking and punching to dance and twirl at a Marine Corps Birthday Ball.

Rousey, 28 — the reigning champion in the UFC women's bantamweight division and arguably the sport's biggest star — accepted an invitation from U.S. Marine Jarrod Haschert, 22, according to a news report on Tuesday.

In a video posted to on his Facebook page Thursday, Haschert, a New Jersey native, confesses to Rousey that she is his "celebrity crush" and he would love to take her to the ball on Dec. 11.

"I love everything that you do and I think you are a phenomenal person," said the rosy-faced, North Carolina-based marine in the video that had been viewed nearly 5 million times by Tuesday night.

"If you (consider it), you will truly be making my dream come true," he continued.

It was a few days until Rousey accepted, after a TMZ cameraman asked about the proposal point-blank in video published Tuesday. A beaming Rousey is seen saying yes to the date, with just one stipulation: "He’s gotta be a gentleman. I’m not a first date kind of girl."

Rousey admitted she was at a loss on how to reach him. She agreed to the date after a January fight against former boxer Holly Holm was moved to Nov. 14.

Rousey did make one other request of Haschert: That he get dates for three of her friends as well.

Photo Credit: GettyImages
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[North Texas Family is a House Divided]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 19:58:55 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Notre+Dame+Longhorns+family.jpg The University of Texas Longhorns take on the Notre Dame Fighting Irish this Saturday in Indiana on NBC 5. For one very large North Texas family, the game has special meaning.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Gallardo Looking to Continue Run After Rangers Loss]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 15:19:07 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/482965282.jpg

Yovani Gallardo has stepped on the mound for the Texas Rangers several times this season following a Rangers loss, and he hasn't made it two straight losses for his team very often.

He's been a huge reason the Rangers stayed afloat this year after losing both Yu Darvish (for the season) and Derek Holland (for four months) by the time the Rangers had played their first home game this season.

In fact, the veteran righty, who is a Fort Worth Trimble Tech grad, is in the midst of the best season of his career. He's currently 11-9 with a 3.14 ERA, nearly 40 points lower than his career-low ERA for a season that was set last year with the Brewers.

On Tuesday night, he'll take the hill for the Rangers again looking to bounce back from a Rangers loss and he'll be looking to continue a pretty nice personal streak since the trade deadline on July 31.

Gallardo gave up five earned runs in three straight starts leading up to the trade deadline, possibly because of a distraction with talk surrounding him in the trade market. Since the deadline passed, he's been fantastic and is currently coming off two straight scoreless outings against the Tigers and Blue Jays, owners of the best offense in all of baseball.

In fact, in August, Gallardo was 4-0 with a 1.98 ERA, and he'll look to continue that trend over the final month of the season with a start in San Diego on Tuesday in a park where he's been highly successful over his career.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Rangers Building Formidable Bench For Stretch Run]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 14:49:10 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/469844142.jpg

With MLB's September roster expansions always comes some new names and added depth for the regular season's final month. That's a natural result with 15 guys added to the roster.

But for the Texas Rangers, who are right in the thick of the AL West race and currently sit in the second AL Wild Card spot, the September expansion is helping further solidify what already is a pretty impressive host of bench players for Jeff Banister.

The Rangers already had a bench of either Mike Napoli or Mitch Moreland and with Josh Hamilton's return from the disabled list on Tuesday will add him to the available pool of pinch-hitters. Now, they'll also be adding Joey Gallo, who granted will strikeout a lot but will also get a hold of a pitch and send it into orbit as evidenced by his 28 home runs this season in pro baseball (five in the majors in his 25 games earlier this summer).

They've also added Drew Stubbs, who has a history of being a really good bat even despite his struggles over the past couple of seasons, and Will Venable, who has reached safely in every game as a Ranger since being acquired from San Diego last week.

Banister has plenty of weapons and plenty of versatility to bring off his bench, and it's going to make it difficult for opposing managers to plan out their bullpen approach late in games.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Rangers Lineup Looking to Rebound After Domination From Ross]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 14:35:39 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-486124778.jpg

The Texas Rangers saw their pretty nice offensive streak come to a screeching halt on Monday night in the series opener against the Padres in pitcher-friendly Petco Park in San Diego.

The Rangers' offense had been on a pretty nice run as part of their red-hot August schedule, but they ended the month with a shutout loss at the hands of the Padres and their young star pitcher Tyson Ross, who tossed seven scoreless innings and even added to the fun with an RBI single of his own.

The Rangers managed only three hits — two from Elvis Andrus — and two walks while having to trim their lineup a bit thanks to NL rules and no designated hitter.

Ross is a big strikeout pitcher fanned seven Rangers on Monday night, and Tuesday's starter Andrew Cashner is a guy who can strike people out too, just not up to the standard of Ross. The Rangers might have to adjust their approach a bit on Tuesday, but don't expect them to be held to nothing again.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Daniels Getting National Play for Top Executive]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 13:50:43 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/jon-daniels-wash-resigns_1200x675_325780547532.jpg

The Texas Rangers were a shell of their former self in 2014, thanks to a seemingly unfair — for lack of better term — rash of injuries that plagued the team early in the year and just kept piling up as the season went on.

The result was a season that nearly saw them lose 100 games and saw their all-time leader in managerial wins, Ron Washington, resign unexpectedly early in September.

Now, we're almost a year to the day since Washington's shocking resignation, and Daniels is getting some deserved talk for executive of the year honors.

It all started with the basic feeling of give-up after the Rangers lost Darvish and Holland, yet they persevered with a makeshift pitching staff led by the acquisition of Yovani Gallardo. Then, Rule 5 draft pick Delino DeShields came out of nowhere to be an everyday center fielder with 20-plus stolen bases and a great affinity for the leadoff spot.

Then there's the trade for Cole Hamels, and lesser acquisitions such as Jake Diekman and Sam Dyson, along with veteran former Rangers like Josh Hamilton and Mike Napoli on the cheap. Those moves have helped the Rangers to varying degrees, but none of them have been bad moves. Diekman and Dyson have completely revitalized what was the club's unquestioned weakness in their bullpen.

The success for Daniels this season has been very real, so for all the #TeamNolan people out there, keep hating because it's not really getting you anywhere.

<![CDATA[McFadden: Vikings Game "A Glimpse of What I Can Do"]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 13:44:32 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/darren-mcfadden-49ers.jpg

Cowboys running back Darren McFadden believes he gave coaches, teammates and fans a sneak-peek of what he can do in space when he went for a game-high 37 yards on four carries in Saturday night’s preseason loss to the Vikings.  

That’s a glimpse of what I can do out there if I get a little room to run,” McFadden said, per the Dallas Morning News. “I feel like everybody got a chance to see that. It’s something that I just want to keep building on.”

McFadden’s brief but exciting performance on Saturday night aside, going into the season, he and Joseph Randle will lead a by-committee rushing attack--which is nothing new for McFadden.

“It’s something I’ve done pretty much throughout my career, at school or being with the Raiders,” McFadden said. “It’s one of those deals, it’s the NFL, it’s a long season. You have to be able to have two backs that can go in there and be able to tote it the way you need to tote it.”

McFadden, who ran alongside former Cowboys first round pick Felix Jones at Arkansas, admits that there’s a part of him that wants that starting running back designation, but ultimately, it doesn’t matter much.

“A lot of people are going to put a lot of emphasis on it,” McFadden said. “The competitor in me is going to say I want to be the starting running back. At the end of the day, we’re both going to get carries however they decide to play it out.”

<![CDATA[Kela Performing in Crucial Role After Break]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 13:30:46 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/177*120/GettyImages-477667910.jpg

Keone Kela was simply overworked leading up to the MLB Trade Deadline, and the 22-year-old rookie reliever was letting it show in his performance.

After giving up a run on July 30 against the Yankees, two games after allowing two runs to the Angels, Kela was demoted to Double-A Frisco, but only by definition. In fact, he wasn't being punished. The Rangers had a plan for him all along — rest, rest and more rest.

Since he returned on Aug. 11, he's been on an absolute tear and has become a pivotal late-inning power arm in the Rangers' bullpen, often assuming a seventh- or sometimes eighth-inning role with the Rangers. In those 10 games, Kela hasn't allowed a run and has given up only four hits with 12 strikeouts and one walk in 9 1/3 innings since his return.

His season ERA is now sitting at a cool 2.72 in 53 innings and he appears fresh for the stretch run to go along with newly acquired Sam Dyson and Jake Diekman as power arms late in the game to set up for closer Shawn Tolleson.

Photo Credit: Stephen Dunn]]>
<![CDATA[Jerry Jones Optimistic, But Not Offering Any Predictions]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 13:28:12 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/jerry-jones-camp-2015-072915-01.jpg

For the second time in as many years, Jerry Jones is staying away from Super Bowl talk.

The owner and general manager just watched his Cowboys surprise just about everyone on their way to a 12-4 season, an NFC East title and a playoff win in 2014. They were arguably a play away from getting into the NFC Championship Game, where they would have faced the Seahawks--who they had beaten in Seattle earlier that year--for a place in the Super Bowl.

Jones doesn’t want to talk about what-ifs at this point, and he’s not going to offer a Super Bowl prediction for this year, but make no mistake, he’s feeling very optimistic about his team. He made as much clear in a Tuesday appearance on 105.3-FM The Fan’s New School Show.

“Well, maybe it’s, I hate to use the word, maybe it’s being exceptionally realistic,” Jones said, via the Dallas Morning News. “I know we’ve had some years where [Tony] Romo has really played well and we didn’t get there. Last year was one of them. Boy, when you have that kind of year out of you and still leave some out there, then you realize how tough this is to get done, not that it’s impossible to get done. But you realize the odds of saying it.

“Now, that still shouldn’t keep me from saying, ‘Look, Tony’s playing at a high level. We’ve got the best looking defense we’ve had around here in several years. We’ve got an offensive team that’s going to get better.’ So we ought to feel better about things than we did this time last year, or in my mind, any time over the last five or six years. Well, I think in the last five or six years, I’ve said Super Bowl a few times, so let’s do this by deduction.”

Photo Credit: NBC 5 Sports]]>
<![CDATA[Profar Could Join Rangers Down Stretch]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 13:14:27 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/jurickson-profar1.jpg

With rosters expanding on Tuesday to 40 players, the Texas Rangers have already made some of their additions known, such as Joey Gallo, Luke Jackson and the activation of Josh Hamilton from the disabled list to serve as likely nothing more than a pinch-hitter.

Another player who could join the big-league roster for the Rangers is Jurickson Profar, the former consensus top prospect in baseball who hasn't played a big-league game in almost two years due to back-to-back seasons being ruined by shoulder injuries.

Profar, who's still only 22 years old, has basically been forgotten by Rangers fans due to his extended absence and the rise to relevance for fellow second base prospect Rougned Odor, who seems to have locked up that job for a good while as a 21-year-old.

Profar would only be able to serve as a pinch-runner and pinch-hitter as he still can't throw and is only to the point where he's throwing from 90 feet, but the Rangers' hope is that he'll move up soon and be ready to play in the Arizona Fall League to get him more prepared for the 2016 season.

“It’s a more controlled environment than winter ball and he can work with our training staff out there every day,” Daniels told the Dallas Morning News, speaking of the Fall League Profar is set to play in next month.

Photo Credit: Getty Images, NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[New Bag Policy for SMU Home Football Games]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 16:38:26 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/SMU-fans-with-a-flag.jpg

SMU football fans will have to adhere to a new bag policy when attending home games in Dallas.

As of the 2015 college football season, all bags brought into Gerald J. Ford Stadium must be clear plastic, vinyl or PVC.

The bags may not exceed 12 x 6 x 12 inches in size.

A one-gallon clear plastic freezer bag is allowed.

Small clutch bags, approximately the size of a hand, will be permitted.

The following items are prohibited from entering Ford Stadium:

  • Purses
  • Coolers
  • Briefcases
  • Backpacks
  • Computer and Camera Bags
  • Cinch Bags
  • Diaper Bags
  • Fanny Packs
  • Luggage of any kind
  • Seat cushions that have zippers, pockets, or compartments
  • Outside food or drink (one sealed bottle of water permitted)
  • Umbrellas
  • Laser pointers
  • Noise makers
  • Footballs or throwing objects
  • Radios (except pocket size with headsets
  • Animals (except those assisting disabled guests)
  • Firearms, weapons, or knives of any kind

Fans entering Ford Stadium are subject to bag checks and wanding before entering the stadium.

This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[Cowboys Confident Byron Jones Can Handle Work at Two Positions]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 12:53:28 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-486081270.jpg

Going into the final preseason game, the Dallas Cowboys are confident that they can move first round pick Byron Jones around the field without any danger of the workload becoming too big for the rookie.

As Jon Machota of the Dallas Morning News reports, Jones lined up with the first team safeties in the team’s walkthrough on Monday, taking J.J. Wilcox’s usual spot next to Barry Church. Wilcox was dealing with a sore neck, Jones coming off a preseason loss to the Vikings in which he played both corner and safety.

In a recent appearance on G-Bag Nation on 105.3-FM The Fan, Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones declared his confidence in the man the Cowboys made the 27th overall pick of the 2015 Draft.

Not all guys could do it,” Jones said, per the Dallas Morning News. “I think he’s unique in terms of the positions that he’s playing. He’s playing nickel, he’s playing dime, he’s playing press corner, he’s playing free safety, and he seems to have a grasp for it.

“It doesn’t seem too big for him. He seems to be able to step right in and play any of the positions that we ask him to play. He’s very versatile, which is very important for us right now. We couldn’t be more pleased with how he’s really absorbing everything out there. We really feel like whatever we ask him to do out there that he’s capable of doing it. He’s around the ball. I think the more comfortable he gets, the more plays he’ll make.”

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Cowboys Activate MLB Rolando McClain]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 12:38:34 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/072614+Cowboys+McClain.jpg

The Dallas Cowboys activated middle linebacker Rolando McClain from the physically unable to perform (PUP) list before practice on Monday evening, clearing him to work out with the team for the first time since training camp started. McClain spent all of training camp sidelined as he recovered from offseason knee surgery.

In the long term, this means McClain will have a chance to miss one less game to begin the season. He’s already suspended for the first four games for violating the league’s substance abuse policy, and if he had started on the PUP list, he wouldn’t have been eligible to return until after Week 6.

The Cowboys have a bye in Week 6, but he wouldn’t be eligible for the Week 5 matchup with the Patriots on Oct. 11. Now, he will be.

In the short term, Cowboys coaches are excited to work with McClain, even if it is just for two days. After Thursday’s preseason finale, McClain won’t be allowed to practice with the team again until October 5.

It was great to have him out there,” said linebackers coach Matt Eberflus, per the Dallas Morning News. “He’s working with the other linebackers, working with Sean (Lee), working with the first group, being familiar with those guys and getting comfortable. Reps are reps. We can get him in there, make him feel comfortable and have him make the close calls and all those communication things and he’ll be fine.”

Photo Credit: Noah Bullard, NBC 5 Sports]]>
<![CDATA[Weeden Returns, Expects to be Available for Preseason Finale]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 12:13:34 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/485064514.jpg

Cowboys backup quarterback Brandon Weeden was back at practice on Monday after missing a week with a concussion, suffered in the preseason loss to the San Francisco 49ers on August 23.

Weeden said he expects to be available for the preseason finale against the Texans at AT&T Stadium on Thursday.

That’s the plan unless something changes between now and then,” Weeden said, per Todd Archer of ESPN Dallas. “Still a few things we’ve got to do. But I feel better than expected.”

The unexpected week off notwithstanding, Weeden is feeling much more comfortable in the offense now than he was at this time last year, his first with the Cowboys.

“I’m in there with a lot of younger guys, so I’m telling them, ‘Hey, you’ve got (this route) here. You’ve got this,’” Weeden said. “I’m telling every guy what to do. So it helps me, it helped me last year kind of getting a really good grasp of this offense. Now I can kind of explain and I’m not having to think quite as much.”

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Nowitzki Makes Final Run at Olympics]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 11:52:35 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/82378666.jpg

Mavs owner Mark Cuban cringes at the thought of the political and patriotic ramifications.

No, not Donald Trump running for president. His players representing their countries in International tournaments before NBA training camp.

Cuban doesn’t like his players risking their health and the status of their full-time employers to play for their countries for free, but over the years he’s learn to cross his fingers and swallow his frustration. No different this month, as J.J. Barea, Dwight Powell and, yep, even star Dirk Nowitzki again suit up for their national teams.

Powell, likely an end-of-the-bench reserve for Dallas next season, will play for Canada in the 2015 FIBA Americas Championship as it tries to qualify for next summer’s Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. Same for Barea, who will attempt to lead Puerto Rico to an Olympic berth. He had 20 points and 10 assists in his country’s opening-game loss to Argentina this week.

Powell and Barea will be opponents on Friday when Canada and Puerto Rico square off in the final game of the first-round round robin format.

And then there’s Nowitzki and his 37-year-old body, attempting yet again to lead Germany to the Olympics. The Germans missed out on the 2012 Games in London, and Dirk promised to help his country make one more run before hanging up his sneakers. He was the MVP of the 2008 qualifying tournament and was selected as Germany’s flag-bearer in the Opening Ceremonies in Beijing that summer. Their road to Rio, however, will be difficult as they try to qualify from a group of countries that include sudden basketball powers such as Spain, Serbia and Italy.

As Paul George and his knee injury during U.S. National Team tryouts proved last summer, career-threatening injuries can happen anywhere, anytime.

We all – even Cuban – agree that there’s nothing like playing for your country. But here’s hoping the Mavs playing in the global tournaments are more healthy than successful.

A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[RGIII's Decline a Lesson to Cowboys Critics]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 11:39:13 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/485188312.jpg

Next time you want to rip Jerry Jones or Tony Romo – for anything really – take a moment to consider the plight of Robert Griffin III. Don’t look now, but he’s plunged from the Heisman and the NFL playoffs to the depths of blaming interns and being benched behind a guy who went 1-7 as a starter last year.

Yeah. Ain’t it glorious?

We all remember being nauseous back in 2012. After winning the Heisman Trophy at Baylor, RG3 went to Washington and was on the verge of revolutionizing the quarterback position in the NFL. He immediately began flummoxing defenses with his speed, agility and shocking arm strength.

On Nov. 23, 2012 he threw four touchdown passes as the Redskins smoked the Cowboys on Thanksgiving. I remember thinking, “Great, and this kid is just a rookie.” The Redskins beat the Cowboys in an NFC East Championship Game to close the season 10-6 and make the playoffs, as the rejuvenated D.C. faithful serenaded their savior with chants of “R-G-Three!”

But something happened on the way to Canton. RG3 learned about the dangers of running in the NFL. His body broke down. Then his character. And now, his value?

He injured his knee on a scramble in late December 2012. He came back for the Cowboys game and the playoff loss to Seattle, but he wasn’t the same. He may never be the same. The silky-smooth elusiveness. The sprinter’s speed. The full-field danger. All gone, thanks to a damaged wheel.

More injuries last year, when he was replaced by Kirk Cousins in a dreadful 3-13 season. And now? There are stories that his teammates have soured on Griffin. This week he blamed his Instagram’s account liking a negative post about owner Dan Synder on an intern. And coach Jay Gruden this week announced that Cousins is the Redskins’ starting quarterback, and that Griffin – the guy Washington traded three first-round and a second-round pick to draft – might wind up No. 3 on the depth chart behind even Colt McCoy.

Yeah, yikes.

Jones makes mistakes. Romo throws interceptions. But, geez, look at the RG3 saga in D.C. No draft picks. Mike Shanahan long gone. And RG3 benched, and maybe traded. The Redskins have had 16 starting quarterbacks in the last 16 years.

Indeed, Hail to the Cowboys.

A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Gallo Gets Recalled for Stretch Run]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 10:54:06 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/212*120/GettyImages-475795282.jpg

When Joey Gallo made his anticipated big-league debut back on June 2, it was one of the best scenes at Globe Life Park all season. The buzz was very real at the park that night, and Gallo sent everyone home happy that night with a smashing debut in a 15-2 win over the White Sox.

That night, Gallo went 3-for-4, scored three times and drove in four runs while falling just a triple shy of the cycle included a tape-measure home run to the upper deck in right field.

Gallo struggled for much of his month-long stint in the bigs, striking out way too often but he showed flashes and when he got a hold of one, it was often gone. He struggled with strikeouts for the past couple of months in Triple-A Round Rock, but he's back in Arlington now as part of the September roster expansion.

Three months after his debut, Gallo will be in the Rangers' dugout gaining valuable experience playing meaningful September baseball, and along the way he'll get a chance to provide a scary bat off the bench that pitchers have to respect because of his prodigious power alone.

Don't expect to see Gallo every day, or even every few days, but when you do see him, lock in because he's bound to give us something worth cheering for at some point.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Hamilton Will Never Be the Player We Cherish]]> Tue, 01 Sep 2015 10:35:27 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/475421292.jpg

Good news: Josh Hamilton is back.

Bad news: Josh Hamilton may never be back.

There’s a reason the Angels were so ready to give up on the former MVP. First, he’s lost his “fastball.” Secondly, his body is breaking down. Since acquiring him early in the season, the Rangers have gotten doses of each.

Hamilton has shown flashes, but he’s suffered more injuries than produced big hits. He’ll return Tuesday from his latest stint on the disabled list – this time a knee – but if the Rangers are smart they won’t put him in the outfield again this season.

Pinch-hit? Sure. DH? Absolutely. But Hamilton’s full-speed running should be used for quality over quantity, like going 1st to 3rd on a single in the playoffs rather than chasing a double into the left-field gap in early September.

The Rangers seem to be thinking correctly on this. When Hamilton returns Tuesday in San Diego he’ll likely be a PH/DH. Injuries have limited him to only 38 games this season. He’s already undergone two surgeries on each knee, and is contemplating another off-season operation to repair cartilage in the sore knee.

His declining health is one of the reasons I didn’t attend the parade when the Rangers reacquired him. He’s no longer the five-time All-Star whose five tools led the Rangers to consecutive World Series. He’s now the old veteran role player, reduced to hitting .254 with six homers and 21 RBI.

Hamilton can still help the Rangers. But like everything else in his life, his production now must be carefully managed. Moderation … or else.

A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[LA Selected as U.S. Candidate for 2024 Olympics]]> Wed, 02 Sep 2015 02:43:31 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/218*120/09-01-2015-olympics-la-1984-GettyImages-491337875.jpg

Los Angeles is officially in the running to host the 2024 Olympics.

With Boston bowing out earlier this year, the LA City Council voted unanimously Tuesday to approve a proposal to authorize Mayor Eric Garcetti to execute agreements related to the Olympic bid. The U.S. Olympic Committee later announced that it had selected LA as the United States candidate.

"We all know the next two years are about fleshing out the details, but this is in our DNA," said Garcetti, citing the city's experience with the 1932 and 1984 Olympics. "We know how to do Olympics, we know how to do them well, we know how to do them  economically."

Officials lit the cauldron at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum Tuesday night symbolizing hopes that the Olympics could return to the city in 2024.

"We could use the shot in the arm, just as a people," said Danny Harris, an silver medalist in the 1984 Olympics.

United States Olympics Committee CEO  Scott Blackmun officially announced that LA is the U.S. candidate for 2024 at a beach-side news conference in Santa Monica about an  hour after the council's vote.

Rome, Paris, Hamburg, Germany and Budapest, Hungary are already in the mix. The International Olympic Committee will pick the host city in 2017.

"This is a great Olympic city," Councilman Paul Krekorian said. "Let Paris and Rome and whoever else who wants to compete know, we're in this to win it, and I think we will."

The Summer Olympics were last held in the United States in 1996, when  Atlanta was the site.

The United States did not make a bid to host the 2020 Summer Olympics,  which were awarded to Tokyo in 2013. Los Angeles sought to be the U.S.  candidate to host the 2016 Games but was beaten by Chicago, whose bid was  ultimately rejected by the International Olympic Committee in favor of Rio de  Janeiro.

LA is looking to join London as the only cities to host the  Summer Olympics three times. The second-largest U.S. city initially lost the opportunity to bid to Boston but regained it after the East Coast city backed out over concerns about financial liability.

But many financial details of the Los Angeles plan remain vague. City analysts said last week that based on the information given to the city so far, "it is difficult to determine the fiscal impact and risk to the city of hosting the 2024 Games at this time."

The City Council's Ad Hoc Committee on the 2024 Summer Olympics backed an agreement last week that would show the United States Olympic Committee that the city of Los Angeles is committed to pursuing a bid to host the Games, but the full council was given extra time to review bidding documents that were delivered to the city last week. The "joinder" agreement was requested by the United States Olympic Committee.

Some city officials and residents have urged caution in pursuing the bid, saying the city could be on the hook for cost overruns incurred by hosting the Olympics, which boosters of the bid estimate as costing about $4.6 billion to run. Time has also been limited for Los Angeles, which was given only a few weeks to review the pact before the IOC's deadline -- compared with the several months that Boston had to study the idea.

That deadline was Sept. 15.

Last week was also the first time many city leaders and analysts were able to review a 200-page draft bid book and a proposed contract between the USOC and LA24, the nonprofit formed to pursue the bid and potentially manage the games if Los Angeles is picked as the host city. LA24 chair Casey Wasserman, a businessman and philanthropist, assured the committee last week that he believed "that this can be and will be the most responsible Games possible."

The ad hoc panel voted in favor of the effort after revisions were made to the agreement to clarify that the city will still have the opportunity to negotiate a more comprehensive "host city contract" at a later date. City attorneys told the panel that by backing the bid effort Tuesday, the city will not be exposed to any major financial obligations or liabilities.

A preliminary review of the budget appeared to show that one of the major capital projects, the Olympic Village, "may significantly exceed the projected $1 billion," City Administrative Officer Miguel Santana and Chief Legislative Analyst Sharon Tso wrote in a report Thursday. The analysts said more than half of the budget may go toward just remediation and relocation costs.

Supporters of the Los Angeles bid have said the city will more likely see a surplus, saying that unlike other cities, Los Angeles already has many of the needed sporting venues in place.

The Olympic Village would be next to the Los Angeles River in Lincoln Heights -- in a Union Pacific rail yard known as the "Piggyback Yard" -- and calls for track-and-field and the opening and closing ceremonies to be held at a renovated Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.

Photo Credit: Getty]]>
<![CDATA[Top Sports Photos 2015]]> Mon, 31 Aug 2015 19:01:02 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/topSports-GettyImages-485604956.jpg Click to see dramatic game action photos from professional football, hockey, basketball, baseball and more.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[New Film Chronicles Legendary NTX Football Team]]> Sun, 30 Aug 2015 23:18:27 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Carter_high_football_movie.png

The film "Carter High" aims to share the story of the 1988 Dallas Carter High School Cowboys, the team that saw their state championship title taken away.

Former Carter High School head coach Freddie James has the hardware to prove his success as the leader of the Cowboys for 14 seasons. But the one big ring and trophy he can't display at his Dallas home is the 1988 State Championship.

"It hurt not only me but it hurt the community and the neighborhood, and probably everybody in Dallas," James said.

The Cowboys won the game at Texas Stadium against a team from San Antonio. What James didn't know at the time was that one of his star players was academically ineligible to take the field.

As a result, the team's title was taken away.

"Sprague Stadium is where the Carter Cowboys won many of their games in the 80's, but the '88 team stood out," James said. "They went 14 and zero that season and some high school football fans still call them the most talented team in Texas' history."

The movie, "Carter High" chronicles that storied season, and the off field behavior that led to prison sentences for some of the players.

"When they got out of the troubles they were in, they went on and still held their head up high," said James.

The movie was directed by a former Carter player, and the cast includes Vivica A. Fox. The title track is by Dallas artist Dorrough. 

"I can relate to the players sometimes, the hardships sometimes; you step out of your category of being a football player and do some things that aren't the best and smartest decisions," said Dorrough.

Actor Charles Dutton will take the roll as James. The pair spent hours together before filming began.

"It's going to be a good movie. I just hope everybody comes and sees it," said James.

"Carter High" opens in theaters on Friday, Oct. 30.

<![CDATA[Mavs To Be Tested Early in Preseason ]]> Mon, 31 Aug 2015 11:41:30 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/204*120/470587310.jpg

The Mavs start bouncing basketballs in preseason games in only 36 days, so it won’t take long to find out how they compare to some of the league’s best.

In their seven-game schedule, Dallas will face both Eastern Conference finalists from 2015 along with the Western Conference finalist that knocked them out of the playoffs in last year’s first round.

Not only will the Mavs play the Rockets on Oct. 7, the Hawks on Oct. 16 and LeBron James and the Cavaliers on Oct. 19, they’ll also get a look at a familiar face in a new place.

That’s right, Tyson Chandler and his new team — the Suns — come to the American Airlines Center Oct. 21.

Not that anything gets settled — or even realistically previewed — but we’ll learning pretty quickly if the Mavs’ rebuilt roster can compete on any level with some of the NBA’s best.

Mavs’ 2015-16 NBA Pre-Season Schedule

  • Oct. 6 vs. Nuggets, 7:30 p.m.
  • Oct. 7 at Rockets, 7 p.m.
  • Oct. 13, vs. Thunder (at Tulsa), 7 p.m.
  • Oct. 16, vs. Hawks, 7:30 p.m.
  • Oct. 19 at Cavaliers, 6 p.m.
  • Oct. 21, vs. Suns, 7:30 p.m.
  • Oct. 23, vs. Bulls (at Lincoln), 7 p.m.

A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>