Cam Newton to start Sunday, barring setback from concussion

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton will start Sunday’s game at New Orleans barring a setback in the concussion protocol, coach Ron Rivera said Friday. Newton still has to get final clearance from an independent physician, but that appears to be a formality after the reigning MVP was a full participant in practice the past two days. Rivera said Newton is expected to meet with the independent physician Friday. Running back Jonathan Stewart will also start after missing the last three games with a hamstring injury. Those who won’t play are starting left tackle Michael Oher (concussion), cornerback James Bradberry?(toe), cornerback Robert McClain (hamstring), defensive tackle Vernon Butler?(ankle) and defensive tackle Paul Soliai?(foot). Newton missed his third career start on Monday night…

The tragic tale behind a Heisman underdog All set? You bet! Ready 'o? Let's go! Whaddya say? OK! That's the chant. That's how practice started every day for Gordie Lockbaum in his four years playing football at The College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts. It was a daily reminder of the passion, the camaraderie, the structure and the discipline that was to follow. It was the way his coach, Mark Duffner, started practice during Lockbaum's heralded junior and senior seasons, when the team went 21-1 and Lockbaum became a two-time Heisman Trophy finalist. In their corner of the college football universe, much has been said and written about those teams, but not about the genesis of them. And almost none about the man who built it all from nothing. While the two...

Tributes pour in for caddie Max Zechmann ‹› Dubai: Tributes have poured in for Dubai-based caddie Maximilian Zechmann, who died of a heart attack during the first round of the Omega Dubai Ladies Masters at Emirates Golf Course on Wednesday. The 56-year-old Austrian, who was caddying for French golfer Anne-Lise Caudal, collapsed on the 13th fairway. He was treated by paramedics who then transferred him by ambulance to hospital, where he was later pronounced dead. Zechmann was a former men’s European Tour caddie who had wins with fellow Austrian Marcus Brier and German Marcel Siem. He had retired and moved to Dubai two years ago, but still helped out on the bag at local events. He is survived by his wife Elinor and three sons Maximilian junior, Ryan and Marco. Carly...

David Ortiz teases comeback in wake of Chris Sale trade to Red Sox Just call him David Or-tease. The Red Sox gave up big parts of their future to add a present-day superstar, causing an icon of the very recent past to muse about a possible comeback. David Ortiz, who capped off a likely Hall of Fame career with one of the greatest farewell seasons ever, took to Instagram Tuesday to playfully hint that his retirement might not even last one offseason. After all, why wouldn’t he want to go for a fourth World Series ring by rejoining a loaded Boston team that just added ace pitcher Chris Sale? That fainting sound you hear is Red Sox Nation swooning at the thought of its beloved Big Papi playing another season. Of course, that’s highly unlikely to happen, even...

Denver Broncos see a 2015 redux ahead ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) - Where others might see major flaws in Denver’s drive to repeat, the Broncos see flashbacks. A year ago, they were trying to shore up a spongy offensive line just as they are now. They were seeking more production from their tight ends and running backs while making do without Peyton Manning, same as they are today. “I don’t think anyone on offense would say that we’ve put together a complete game,” quarterback Trevor Siemian said. “We’ve won seven games, and we know we can get better. I don’t think there are too many teams that can say that and be in this position.” The Broncos (7-3) are starting to get healthy on defense just as they did at this time last...

3 takeaways from UNLV’s rout of Northern Arizona Three takeaways from the UNLV basketball team’s 110-71 victory over Northern Arizona on Tuesday at the Thomas Mack Center:1. The Rebels were active.UNLV consistently got in passing lanes, and at one point in the first half had outscored the Lumberjacks 15-0 off turnovers. The margin was 27-6 by game’s end.The Rebels also forced 16 turnovers while committing only nine.Coach Marvin Menzies sets a goal of 35 deflections per game, and it seemed like his team hit that mark in the first 10 minutes. The Rebels probably came up short for the game (Menzies didn’t know the total), but they set the tone early with nine in the first 11 minutes.“They got us out and got us the lead early,” Menzies said. “Those easy buckets we got off the defense, ...

Josh Norman clarifies 'unload the clip,' wants to move on from Dez Bryant tiff Four days after a postgame scuffle with Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant, Washington Redskins cornerback Josh Norman was ready to move on. Norman attempted to defuse the situation following Monday’s practice in his first media session with local reporters since Washington’s 31-26 loss to Dallas at ATT Stadium on Thanksgiving. “Nothing,” said Norman when asked about how he felt about the postgame incident with Bryant. “It really wasn’t a situation. It was a game. We lost. They won. That was it.” Bryant finished with three catches for 32 yards and no touchdowns with Norman in coverage, per Pro Football Focus, and called out Norman after the game. He told NFL Network that, “Washington needs to get their money back,” after signing Norman to a five-...

El Clasico: Zinedine Zidane and Luis Enrique don’t always get the credit they deserve Despite being former midfield heroes for the clubs they now manage, Barcelona coach Luis Enrique and his Real Madrid counterpart Zinedine Zidane are afforded little credit for their achievements in management. The duo famously clashed on the pitch in a heated 'Clasico' in 2003 when Zidane grabbed Luis Enrique's face following a rough tackle from Barca's Carles Puyol and they will stand metres apart on the Nou Camp sidelines on Saturday. The duo famously clashed on the pitch in a heated 'Clasico' in 2003. Reuters In less than 11 months since succeeding Rafael Benitez, Zidane has revitalised a side that had become stale. He won the Champions League last season and has taken Real six points clear at the top of the league in this campaign. Under the Frenchman in ...