Who wouldn't love watching models playing beach volleyball?
Later today that's exactly what you'll get at the Swatch Beach Volleyball FIVB World Tour Finals in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Two of the hottest US model agencies going head-to-head on Center Court for a fun break from some excellent international competition. You'll see NEXT vs RUNWAY TALENT GROUP for a 30-minute Exhibition. Just check out the gallery we have for a preview and see more information here!
The models should start playing at around noon today in between the semi-finals.
This is the fourth year we’ve had the opportunity to cover the Gatorade High School Athlete of the Year awards, and we’re definitely seeing a pattern. These awards have been introducing future sports stars since the awards were created in 1985, and that trend is certainly continuing. Just consider the last three athletes to win Boys Basketball Player of the Year - Karl Anthony Towns, Andrew Wiggins and Jabari Parker, three stars who have dominated the top of the NBA draft in recent years. Then consider recent Girls Basketball Player of the Year Breanna Stewart, who has won three-straight national titles at UConn.
Now she’ll be joined by this year’s Girls Basketball Player of the Year and winner of Girls Athlete of the Year Katie Lou Samuelson at UConn as she goes for four straight and Katie Lou tries to start her own streak. The rich get richer!
This year’s winner of the Boys Athlete of the Year, Kyler Murray, will be taking his considerable talents to Texas A&M. Kyler talked about the recruiting process, and explained that his decision to go play for the Aggies wasn’t influenced that much by the fact that his father played there. Kyler talked about how the style of play at A&M suited his ability, and how he bonded with the coaching staff. When talking to a young man like Kyler calmly explaining the approach he took to his future, you realize how mature many of these high school athletes can be these days as they get so much more attention and learn to handle it early in their careers.
“The first event I ever announced was a women’s gymnastics meet at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln,” said Rick Allen, lead announcer for NASCAR on NBC. “The guy who was supposed to do it didn’t show up. And I just happened to be hanging around, so I did it.”
As the then-reigning back-to-back Big Eight (now Big 12) Conference decathlon champion for the Cornhuskers, as Allen was in 1991 and 1992, why wouldn’t you be hanging around the women’s gymnastics team? If charisma was a sport, he’d still be leading the league.
Allen’s affable, smooth, confident tone on the air transitions just as easily outside of the booth to the confines of the NBC Sports tent where we talked about his job as the voice of NBC Sports’ rejuvenated NASCAR franchise.
“Nothing about this position is easy, but I am privileged and very excited to be here.”
Allen got his start announcing races at Eagle Raceway in Eagle, Nebraska after getting a degree in speech communications.
He joined Fox Sports in 2003 and served as play-by-play man for Camping World Truck Series and Xfinity races until last year. Former NASCAR driver Jeff Burton and former crew chief Steve Letarte join Allen in the booth.
“At any one time, I have five people in my headset, whether it’s my producer, our spotter, our stats guys… all providing me with information to make the broadcast as engaging and understandable as possible for the fans watching it. And that is on top of the conversations I’m having in the booth, with Jeff and Steve.”
Allen isn’t just a mouthpiece who acts like he knows what he’s talking about; the authenticity of his interest and enjoyment of NASCAR is palpable as he speaks. He’s the voice of the franchise and is excited about helping viewers understand the intricacies of the sport with the second biggest audience base, trailing only the NFL.
Streetball gets a bad wrap. After being exposed to the And1 Mixtape Tour, and occasional Rucker Park Tournament highlight, it’s easy to envision four guys standing around while one guy dribbles, each possession punctuated by a slam dunk with little or no defense.
But the Ball Up “Search for the Next” is completely different from its predecessors. It’s a 10-city tour looking for the best undiscovered player in the country that culminates in $100,000 and a roster spot for the tour’s winner.
In 2003, the most popular streetball player in the world right now, The Professor, was one of them.
While attending an And1 Mixtape Tour stop in Portland, Oregon in 2003, the 5’10,” 155-pound 19-year-old Professor competed in an open run competition prior to that evening’s game and did well enough to get invited back that evening to square off against Team And1.
After a solid performance in the game, he joined the team full-time and was suddenly getting paid to play basketball, literally overnight.
“Yeah, true story. We would’ve been fully content just watching the game,” said Professor about the experience. “I got there early and saw that there was an open run going on and that there was a chance. I hopped in as soon as I could and showed them what I could do.
“And next thing I know, I’m selected to play against the And1 Mixtape Tour team. I got the crowd excited again a few times in that game, and then that night, they asked me to go on tour with them, and I was just shocked.”
Ball Up started in 2009 and took the concept of touring streetball to a new level.
To some people, Alexis DeJoria is the wife of “Moster Garage” star Jesse James. To others, she is the daughter of Jean-Paul DeJoria, billionaire businessman and co-founder of Paul Mitchell hair products and the Patron Spirits Company. But on the NHRA Mello Yello circuit, Alexis DeJoria is one of the best Funny Car drivers on the tour.
We spent two days with Alexis and her team from Kalitta Motorsports at the Kansas Nationals at Heartland Park in Topeka, and inadvertently found ourselves in the middle of the most exciting weekend in the history of the sport.
The day before we arrived, during the second day of qualifying, DeJoria ran the best run of her career, an Elapsed Time (ET) of 3.994.
During the weekend, there were a total of 15 three-second runs. There were 19 three-second runs in the entire 2014 season.
In this video, Alexis talks about how her car accelerates faster than anything on earth (yes, even a fighter jet), how she got into racing, and her career-defining victory in the 2014 NHRA U.S. Nationals, it’s 60th anniversary, a feat akin to winning the Super Bowl.
While ET (the time it takes the car to get from the starting line to finish line) determines qualifying order, it is not as important on race day.
On race days, the car that crosses the finish line first wins, regardless of ET. So the quicker car might not be the winning car, because that driver may have left the starting line slower.
For any driver, a time in the low fours is considered a successful run. But in Kansas on this weekend, the perfect storm of weather conditions and high performance vehicles combined for the most sub-four runs in one weekend, ever.
So what does that even mean? Each run, or “pass” is 1,000 feet. Going a thousand feet in under four seconds means the cars are travelling at speeds in the 300-315 MPH range. Alexis’ car goes from a complete standstill to 100 MPH in less than one second.