<![CDATA[NBC 6 South Florida - Sports]]> Copyright 2014 http://www.nbcmiami.com/news/sports http://media.nbcbayarea.com/designimages/NBC+6+LOGO+GOOGLE.png NBC 6 South Florida http://www.nbcmiami.com en-us Tue, 02 Sep 2014 05:08:33 -0400 Tue, 02 Sep 2014 05:08:33 -0400 NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Dolphins Finish Preseason With Comeback Win]]> Thu, 28 Aug 2014 22:11:23 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/454309290.jpg

The Miami Dolphins concluded the preseason with a comeback win in their 14-13 victory over the St. Louis Rams on Thursday.

After trailing 13-0 entering the fourth quarter, Miami put two touchdowns on the board for the win. The Dolphins finish the preseason with a 3-1 record.

As expected, the game featured names that will not be seen much during the regular season barring injuries. With only a little more than a week until the games count, the Dolphins along with other NFL teams rested their first team players for the most part.

Ryan Tannehill didn't take one snap in the game after playing into the third quarter in the previous game. Tannehill stayed healthy this month and seemed game-ready in his series on the field during the preseason.

Matt Moore started the game and was behind center for the first quarter. Moore who will be the backup quarterback to begin the year was 5-8 for 38 yards. It was one of the less productive outings for Moore this preseason but this game was all about just getting some time on the field. The Dolphins can feel confident that Moore will be ready to step in if needed during the season.

After Moore was lifted, Seth Lobato took the remainder of the snaps in the game for Miami. Lobato led the Dolphins to their two scores with one coming on the ground and the other by air. Lobato finished 12-25 for 147 yards with one pick in addition to the aforementioned touchdown. The receiver on the end of that TD pass was Matt Hazel.

Last game, Miami opened eyes with a big game on the ground. Entering that contest, there were some concerns about the running game for the Dolphins. After 200 rushing yards against Dallas this past Sunday, the total rushing yards in this one was 79 with the majority of that coming in the latter part of the game. Daniel Thomas picked up the rushing TD for Miami.

The Dolphins will begin the regular season on September 7th at home against the New England Patriots.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC 6 South Florida

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Advocates to Monitor Arrest of 49er]]> Tue, 02 Sep 2014 04:26:29 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/221*120/MCDONALD_leaves_jail.jpg

Domestic violence advocates said they plan to closely watch how San Francisco 49ers defensive end Ray McDonald's case plays out in court, and how the National Football League will respond if the player is found guilty to a charge of felony domestic violence.

McDonald, 29, was taken into custody early Sunday after officers responded to a domestic violence incident at a home in an upscale neighborhood at the 2500 block of Bentley Ridge Drive, according to San Jose police. He faces a felony charge of domestic violence.

"I'm very disappointed, especially after two or three days ago the announcement from the NFL that this would not be tolerated," said Kathleen Krenek, a domestic violence advocate.

Krenek is the executive director of Next Door Solutions for Domestic Violence and has worked with victims of domestic violence for 30 years. She was shocked it took only three days for a player to be arrested on charges of domestic violence after the NFL rolled out stiffer punishments for the crime.

The change comes after outrage over the light punishment given to Baltimore Ravens star running back Ray Rice, who was caught on tape beating his then-fiance. Rice received a two-game suspension from the league.

"They came out with a strong message a little bit late," Krenek said of the NFL. "But they did come out with a strong message. Now they need to follow it up."

NFL players will be subject to a six-week game suspension for a first domestic violence offense and banishment from the league for a second, according to the new rules.

"This is your opportunity to say this is not acceptable, we don't accept it, we don't condone it, and we are asking all men to think differently if they are hurting their partner," Krenek said.

Meanwhile, McDonald is out of custody after posting $25,000 bail.

So far, McDonald is not saying much about the incident.

"It's a crazy situation," McDonald said Sunday as he walked out of the jail less than 10 hours after his arrest.

McDonald's alleged victim may have been pregnant, sources told NBC Bay Area's Damian Trujillo.

He was apparently involved in an altercation with his fiancee, who had bruises on her arms and neck, according to the Sacramento Bee. 49ers teammates Vernon Davis and Demarcus Dobbs were also reportedly present, the Bee reported.

But McDonald maintained his innocence.

"The truth will come out," he said. "Everybody knows what kind of person I am."

McDonald is scheduled to return to court on Sept. 15.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC 6 South Florida

Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Road Trip Ends on Down Note for Miami Marlins]]> Mon, 01 Sep 2014 14:54:19 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/454441766.jpg

The Miami Marlins 1-0 loss to the Atlanta Braves on Sunday was their sixth loss in nine tries on a tough road trip.

The loss put another big dent in the playoff hopes for Miami which are dwindling by each passing day. Heading into the start of September, the Marlins find themselves in a tough spot that only a prolonged winning streak can likely correct.

Nathan Eovaldi did all he could but it wasn't enough. The right-hander took the loss to fall to 6-10 on the year despite 6.2 strong innings. Eovaldi held the Braves to only the one run while striking out six along the way.

Chris Hatcher and A.J. Ramos worked the remainder of the game to keep the deficit at one. Ramos struck out the side in his inning of work.

As an offense it was a very tough day for Miami as Alex Wood completely dominated the lineup. Wood struck out 12 in his eight innings. If not for a pinch-hitter being needed, he likely would have went for a complete game. 

Atlanta's closer Craig Kimbrel worked the ningh and added a strike out of his own to give the Marlins an alarming 13 strikeouts in the game. Christian Yelich, Marcell Ozuna and Adeiny Hechavarria each struck out twice. 

Every member of the starting lineup except for Jeff Mathis struck out at least once and five were left on base for the Marlins. All six hits were collected were singles and only three runners reached scoring position.

The Marlins will try and right the ship on Monday when they begin a series with the New York Mets.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Report: Heat Coaches Rothstein and McAdoo to Be Reassigned]]> Mon, 01 Sep 2014 14:52:13 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/73132673.jpg

Two longtime assistant coaches with the Miami Heat are set to be reassigned by the team according to a report from Yahoo.

Ron Rothstein has been on the bench since 2004 while Bob McAdoo has held a seat since 1995. The two coaches are respected and have been present in many big moments in franchise history including all three NBA titles.

Rothstein's decade long stint as an assistant coach is actually his second journey with the Heat. He was the first head coach in franchise history back in 1988. He would onto that role until 1991 before moving on to the Detroit Pistons.

McAdoo has only held one coaching job in his career and it is this one with Miami. He retired as a player after finishing his career in Italy. Before playing overseas, McAdoo enjoyed an exceptional playing career and is a member of the Hall of Fame.

The two men are expected to continue to remain members in the organization according to the report but their new roles are thus far unknown.

With these two coaches seemingly headed off the bench, Juwan Howard could see an increased role on the coaching staff. Last season Howard was seated behind the Heat bench in his first year as an assistance. It's possible he could find himself seated next to head coach Erik Spoelstra next season.

The Heat will open up their 2014-15 regular season on October 29th against the Washington Wizards.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[49ers' Ray McDonald Arrested]]> Mon, 01 Sep 2014 13:24:54 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/221*120/MCDONALD_leaves_jail.jpg

The San Francisco 49ers defensive end Ray McDonald was arrested for domestic violence overnight, San Jose police confirmed.

San Jose police Sgt. Heather Randol said the 29-year-old was taken into custody early Sunday after officers responded to a domestic violence incident at a home in an upscale neighborhood at the 2500 block of Bentley Ridge Drive, SJPD said in a release.

McDonald was taken into custody without incident and booked into Santa Clara County Jail on felony domestic violence charges, according to the release. He has posted $25,000 bail and has been released from jail, police said.

So far, McDonald is not saying much about the incident.

"It's a crazy situation," said McDonald, as he walked out of the jail less than 10 hours after his arrest.

McDonald's alleged victim may have been pregnant, sources told NBC Bay Area's Damian Trujillo.

He was apparently involved in an altercation with his fiancee, who had bruises on her arms and neck, according to the Sacramento Bee. 49ers teammates Vernon Davis and Demarcus Dobbs were also reportedly present, the Bee reported.

But McDonald maintained his innocence.

"The truth will come out," he said. "Everybody knows what kind of person I am."

The 49ers General Manager Trent Baalke said in a statement Sunday that the organization is "aware of the recent reports regarding Ray McDonald and we take such matters seriously. As we continue to gather the facts, we will reserve further comment.”

McDonald, who has been playing for the 49ers since 2007, was arrested on the same street where 49ers' outside linebacker Aldon Smith was busted for a DUI last September, sources told NBC Bay Area.

The NFL has suspended Smith on Friday for the first nine games of the 2014 season for violating the league's policies on substance abuse and personal conduct.

McDonald's arrest comes after NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announced a tougher domestic abuse policy on Thursday. NFL players will be subject to a six-week game suspension for a first domestic violence offense and banishment from the league for a second, according to the new rules.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC 6 South Florida

Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Cosart Shines Again As Marlins End Skid]]> Sun, 31 Aug 2014 11:15:49 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/454396066.jpg

The Miami Marlins badly needed a win on Saturday and Jarred Cosart helped them do just that in their 4-0 victory over the Atlanta Braves.

Cosart has been a breath of fresh air since joining Miami in a trade deadline deal. He's kept his team in ballgames and been a stopper when needed. Without the infusion of Cosart into the rotation, it is likely that Miami would be on the outside looking in as far as the playoff race goes.

In this one Cosart gave the Marlins seven shutout innings. The right-hander gave up seven hits but he scattered them and punched out five along the way. Cosart also used double plays to help him escape jams. The Marlins turned three double plays while Cosart was on the mound.

With the win, Cosart is now 12-8 on the year to go along with a 3.80 E.R.A. Since joining the Marlins, he is 3-1 in five starts and has allowed a total of six earned runs in 33 innings pitched.

A.J. Ramos and Mike Dunn combined for a scoreless eighth inning that earned each man his 19th hold of the year. In the ninth, Steve Cishek slammed the door in a non-save situation with a 1-2-3 inning that consisted of three strikeouts.

The Marlins got on the board early with a home run from an unlikely source. Donovan Solano hit a hanging breaking ball out to left field for his third blast of the season. The home run was part of a three-hit day for Solano.

Giancarlo Stanton had an up and down day as he had two hits and a run batted in but also struck out three times. It's been a tough road trip for the slugger in the strikeout department as he is now nearing 20 after only eight games played.

The Marlins will look to take the rubber match on Sunday before heading home. On the mound for Miami will be Nathan Eovaldi.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Dwyane Wade, Gabrielle Union Get Married]]> Mon, 01 Sep 2014 03:43:50 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/168*120/tlmd_172020619.jpg

NBA star Dwyane Wade married actress Gabrielle Union in Miami Saturday, E! News confirmed. The couple tied the knot at Chateau Artisan, a moated castle in Miami-Dade, according to reports.

They were surrounded by family and friends, including the athlete's elder two sons and nephew.

Heat owner Micky Arison, Chris Bosh and DJ Irie all posted Instagram pictures Saturday afternoon using #TheWadeUnion prior to the ceremony.

Wade proposed to Union in December 2013 after four years of dating. Shortly after, it was revealed that he had fathered a son named Xavier with a friend, according to E!.

This is the second marriage for Union and Wade.  Wade married Siohvaughn Funches, his high school sweetheart, in 2002. They welcomed sons Zaire and Zion. The pair broke up in 2007.

Union was married to NFL player Chris Howard from 2001 to 2006.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC 6 South Florida

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Dolphins Make Final Round of Cuts]]> Sun, 31 Aug 2014 09:50:14 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/493389511.jpg

The Miami Dolphins will finalize their roster plans on Saturday following a series of cuts to reduce their roster size to the required 53 players.

On Friday, the Dolphins released TE Kyle Miller before the bulk of the cuts. Saturday's cuts began with CB Kevin Fogg and went on with RB Daniel Thomas, and RB Marcus Thigpen. As the day continued, Miami cut WR Matt Hazel, OL David Arkin, WR Kevin Cone, and LB Andrew Wilson according to the Miami Herald.

With the 4:00 p.m. deadline nearing, the Dolphins cut QB Seth Lobato, S Jordan Kovacs, DE Tevin Mims, DT Garrison Smith, OL Evan Finkenberg and OL Tony Hills. DT Kemal Johnson was placed on injured reserve with a torn meniscus.

The last group of cuts on Saturday included K Jake Rogers. DT Isaako Aaitui, C Sam Brenner, DE D'Aundre Reed, and TE Evan Wilson per the Herald.

There are actually more players on the roster if suspended players Dion Jordan and Reshad Jones are factored in. The two players are suspended for the first four games of the season with that suspension beginning officially on Saturday.

Once Jordan and Jones are eligible to play again after four games, the Dolphins will need to make a pair of cuts to bring them on board. These first four games will give Miami a bonus opportunity to look at a couple of guys who may have otherwise been cut prior to the season.

The season opener will be on September 7th against the New England Patriots at Sun Life Stadium.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Marlins Lose More Ground With 3rd Straight Loss]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 22:41:12 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/454354994.jpg

The Miami Marlins saw their playoff hopes take a hit on Friday in a 5-2 loss to the Atlanta Braves.

The loss was the third in a row for Miami and continued a tough road trip. Thus far in seven games on the trip, the Marlins are 2-5. With the Braves being one of the teams ahead of the Marlins, this was a tough loss.

Tom Koehler pitched well and had a quality start as a matter of fact. Koehler allowed two runs and both came on one swing when Justin Upton took him deep in the sixth inning. The right-hander allowed four hits and walked three while striking out six.

The loss went to Chris Hatcher who started the seventh inning and was lifted after the first two runners reached base. Mike Dunn would take over with runners on the corners and nobody out. He would promptly give up the go-ahead single to the first batter he faced.

Sam Dyson would be the next to pitch after Dunn picked up two outs. Dyson gave up a hit of his own that was misplayed by Marcell Ozuna in center-field. The error led to an additional run and a three-run inning for Atlanta.

In the seventh inning, Jordany Valdespin pinch-hit and delivered a game tying home run. It was the the third home run of the year for Valdespin. Earlier in the game Ozuna doubled for the 22nd time on the year.

Jarred Cosart will be on the mound for Miami on Saturday as the team looks to end the skid and pick up a much needed victory.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[49ers' Aldon Smith Out for 9 Games]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 21:24:29 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/aldon-smith-preason-2014.jpg

The San Francisco 49ers will play more than half the season without the team’s best defensive player.

The NFL has suspended outside linebacker Aldon Smith for the first nine games of the 2014 season for violating the league's policies on substance abuse and personal conduct.

Smith's suspension is without pay, the league announced Friday.

Smith will be eligible to return to the 49ers’ active roster on Monday, Nov. 10, following the team’s Nov. 9 game against the New Orleans Saints, the NFL announced. He'll likely be back on the field when the Niners play the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium on Nov. 16.

“Our organization has known this decision would come and we have prepared for it as a team," San Francisco 49ers General Manager Trent Baalke said in a statement following the league's announcement. "Aldon has taken responsibility for his actions and has continued to show growth personally and professionally. We will continue to support him, but it is time to put this matter behind us and focus on the season ahead.”

Smith will not be able to appeal the suspension as the appeals process has already run its course, CSN Bay Area's Matt Maiocco reported.

The 24-year-old Smith, one of the NFL's top pass rushers, missed five games last season to undergo treatment at an in-patient facility following his DUI arrest Sept. 20.

Just before training camp began last month, the 24-year-old Smith was sentenced to serve three years of probation and to spend 11 days with a work crew after he pleaded no contest to drunken driving and weapons charges.

He has repeatedly said he has been sober since his DUI arrest last September. Smith played in a 27-7 home loss to the Colts on Sept. 22, two days after he was arrested and jailed on suspicion of DUI and marijuana possession. After the game, he publicly apologized for his behavior and later announced he would leave for treatment.

While the Niners went on a five-game winning streak without him, Smith's menacing presence was sorely missed. The team still picked up his 2015 contract option this spring.

In his latest run-in with the law, Smith was arrested April 13 at Los Angeles International Airport. Police said Smith was randomly selected for a secondary screening and became uncooperative with the process, telling a TSA agent that he had a bomb. No charges were filed.

In November, he pleaded not guilty to three felony counts of illegal possession of an assault weapon, stemming from a June 2012 party at his home. Investigators said several shots were fired, two partygoers were injured and Smith was stabbed. In the subsequent investigation, prosecutors say detectives found five unregistered, illegal weapons in Smith's house.

Last season, Smith finished with 8 1/2 sacks and 34 tackles in 11 games with eight starts. He was initially worked back in slowly, but demonstrated he had stayed in shape while away.

Selected seventh overall in the 2011 draft out of Missouri, Smith had a franchise-record 19 1/2 sacks during the 2012 season for the 49ers, who lost to Baltimore in the Super Bowl after that season.

Read more from CSN Bay Area.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Photo Credit: Getty]]>
<![CDATA[Marlins Fall To 5.5 Back With 30 Games Left]]> Thu, 28 Aug 2014 23:46:09 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/453979730.jpg

The Miami Marlins fell further back in the Wild Card race on Thursday despite it being an off-day for the team.

After dropping two in a row to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, the Marlins entered Thursday sitting five back in the Wild Card standings. A win by the San Francisco Giants however made that deficit even larger as it now stands at 5.5 games.

The column that ends up mattering is the loss column as those can not be made up. When taking a look at that, Miami is five back of San Francisco. The Atlanta Braves and Pittsburgh Pirates sit between the teams as well.

With 30 games left on the schedule, Miami has a chance to make the playoffs but it won't be easy. Leapfrogging multiple teams and making up the ground they need to make up is a difficult task. A 2-4 start to the road trip has not helped matters either.

While losses to the Angels are expected, losing two of three to the Colorado Rockies was a big blow for the Marlins. The Rockies are one of the worst teams in baseball and are depleted with injuries. It was crucial for Miami to take the series and they failed to do so.

Miami will now head into Atlanta for a three-game weekend set. This could be a make or break series for the Marlins as they can't afford to lose ground to the Braves who are currently four games ahead of them. It's a lot to ask in terms of a sweep on the road but it is possibly what the Marlins will end up needing.

After finishing in Atlanta, Miami will head home for a series with the New York Mets and another series with the Braves. 

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Stanton Making Case To Be 1st MVP in Franchise History]]> Thu, 28 Aug 2014 23:45:03 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/452629202.jpg

The Miami Marlins have never had a player win the Most Valuable Player Award but Giancarlo Stanton could change that.

Stanton is having a remarkable season, and is leading the National League in many categories. He's not only having the best offensive season of any player in the NL but he's also been the most valuable to his team.

It is not supposition to say that the Marlins would be out of the playoff race without Stanton. Without the slugger in the lineup, it's far more likely that the Marlins would actually be in reach of another 100-loss season. Instead they find themselves hovering around the .500 mark and within striking distance of the playoffs as September nears.

Stanton currently leads the NL in home runs (33), runs batted in (97), on-base percentage (.403), slugging percentage (.558), on-base plus slugging (.961), total bases (273), and walks (87). As far as advanced statistics go, Stanton leads his league in WAR as well according to FanGraphs.

The fact Miami is in the playoff race should only help Stanton gain votes for the award. If his team falls out of contention, he could still win it however. There is a precedent for a player winning the award on a team that doesn't make the postseason. In fact, Marlins' executive Andre Dawson once took home the hardware while on a last place team.

A man who could give Stanton trouble is Clayton Kershaw. Not in terms of striking him out, but in beating him for the honor. Kershaw is having another dominant season, so dominant that he is being mentioned as an MVP candidate in addition to a Cy Young. It's rare for a pitcher to win the MVP Award but it is possible.

If Stanton keeps hitting like he has, the Marlins should remain in the thick of things. Come November, it's possible that Miami could finally find itself with an MVP trophy.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Michael Sam Tackles Six in Last Preseason Game]]> Thu, 28 Aug 2014 22:16:20 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/454307378.jpg

Michael Sam made a statement on Thursday in the St. Louis Rams loss to the Miami Dolphins at Sun Life Stadium.

Sam who was a 7th round pick in this year's draft is vying to make the final roster with that decision looming by this weekend. The defensive end is considered a bubble player and could end up missing the cut. His performance in this game can only help though.

Sam ended up with six tackles in Miami with five coming of the solo variety. That number was good for tied for the most in the game by any player on the field. It was also the most by any player on the Rams. Entering this contest, Sam had five tackles total in the first three games.

In addition to the tackles, Sam has three sacks this preseason. These numbers aren't earth shattering by any stretch of the imagination but they could be enough for Rams' management.

Sam is the first openly gay player in NFL history and has been in the headlines recently due to ESPN running a story on that subject. The network has since apologized for the report in which they put the focus on the locker room instead of the field.

Making the roster should help Sam get recognition for his on-field play and keep him in the headlines for that instead of for his personal life.

Sam has done some work on special teams as well this preseason but Rams' coach Jeff Fisher has said that it's the work on defense that will ultimately decide Sam's fate.

"We're giving him every opportunity to do so, and he's participated in special-teams practices and everything, but that's not going to be part of the criteria for the evaluations," Fisher told ESPN.

Final rosters are due in the NFL on Saturday by 4:00 p.m. ET.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Dolphins Prepare For Preseason Finale]]> Thu, 28 Aug 2014 17:31:06 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/167*120/454027684.jpg

The Miami Dolphins will wrap up their preseason schedule on Thursday with a home game against the St. Louis Rams.

One of the most important aspects to this game is keeping everyone healthy. The result of this game is completely insignificant but even a minor injury this close to the opener could itself be significant.

As is the case with most preseason finales in the NFL, the majority of series will be handled by reserves. The first team will see some game action to stay fresh but beyond that, it would be a risk without much of a reward.

Another reason to keep the first team off the field for more of the game is the coaches still need to take a look at some names vying to make the roster. As of now, the roster stands at 75 players and that needs to be reduced to 53 on Saturday.

Names such as Jason Fox, Tony Hills and Jelani Jenkins will have a close eye on them as those final decisions are made. A poor game can send them packing while a good game could seal the deal for their spot on the team.

With Brady Quinn having his contract terminated earlier this week, there is no longer any doubt of who will serve as Ryan Tannehill's backup going into the season. Incumbent Matt Moore held a relatively firm grip on the slot from the start and will continue to fill the role.

The preseason finale is scheduled to begin at 7:00 p.m.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[USC Player Suspended for Lie]]> Thu, 28 Aug 2014 03:21:19 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/180*120/USC+Josh+Shaw.jpg

A USC football player and co-captain admitted on Wednesday that he lied when he said he hurt his ankles while jumping off a second-floor balcony to save his drowning nephew from a pool, the player said in a statement from his attorney.

Senior cornerback Josh Shaw first told USC's Ripsit Blog that he jumped off the balcony on Aug. 23, landed on the concrete and crawled into the pool to rescue the child, suffering the sprains as a result of the jump.

But on Wednesday, Shaw admitted that the story was "made up," and school officials called it "a complete fabrication."

"On Saturday August 23, 2014, I injured myself in a fall. I made up a story about this fall that was untrue. I was wrong not to tell the truth," Shaw said Wednesday in statement from his lawyer. "I apologize to USC for this action on my part."

"My USC coaches, the USC Athletic Department, and espcially coach Sarkisian have all been supportive of me during my college career and for that, I am very grateful," the statement continued.

The Ripsit blog has since deleted its initial story about the rescue. Shaw has been suspended indefinitely from all team activities, school officials said.

"We are extremely disappointed in Josh," USC head football coach Steve Sarkisian said in a school statement."He let us all down. As I have said, nothing in his background led us to doubt him when he told us of his injuries, nor did anything after our initial vetting of his story."Sarkisian said earlier Wednesday that the campus was looking into phone calls that disputed Shaw's account of what happened.

"I appreciate that Josh has now admitted that he lied and has apologized," Sarkisian said in the statement Wednesday. "Although this type of behavior is out of character for Josh, it is unacceptable. Honesty and integrity must be at the center of our program. I believe Josh will learn from this. I hope that he will not be defined by this incident, and that the Trojan Family will accept his apology and support him."

The football player's sister, Asia Shaw, shared her reaction with NBC4: "I support him with whatever he does 100 percent – 110 percent."

Carmen Trutanich, who represented USC football players before serving as Los Angeles city attorney, says Shaw may have felt pressured to lie.

"It was a kid afraid of telling the coach, 'Hey coach I got hurt doing something stupid,'" Trutanich said. Trutanich is not representing Shaw.

Students were surprised to hear their fellow Trojan lied.

"I'm shocked," one student said. "I didn't think he'd be capable of doing something like that."

"I think that's just really disappointing, because we all thought he was a hero," another student said.

On Tuesday, Sarkisian defended Shaw and said he had "no reason, no history to not believe Josh."

Los Angeles police told NBC4 on Tuesday they had not had any contact with Shaw, but they did take a burglary report Aug. 23, the same night of his fall, in which the victim named Shaw as her boyfriend.

"He is not listed as a suspect, and police had no contact with him," LAPD Officer Sara Faden told NBC4. "His name is just listed in the body of a police report."

Officers responded to the call about 11 p.m., Faden said. While officers were speaking with people outside, a resident returned and spoke to police.

They asked her about her roommates and "people in her life," and she mentioned Shaw as her boyfriend, Faden said.

Conan Nolan and Robert Kovacik contributed to this report.

Photo Credit: USC Athletics]]>
<![CDATA[Heat Sign Shannon Brown To One-Year Deal]]> Wed, 27 Aug 2014 17:02:23 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/485096171.jpg

The Miami Heat added another name to the mix on Wednesday when they brought veteran Shannon Brown on board,

The contract is for one year and is worth $1.3 million according to USA Today.

Brown has bounced around the NBA during his eight-year career after being drafted by the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2006. Brown was a first round pick that year and went 25th overall after playing at Michigan State.

Brown would end up playing in parts of two seasons with Cleveland but with limited success. Some of his time while with the Cleveland organization was spent in the D-League. Brown would end up averaging seven points per game in his final season with the Cavs.

The Cavaliers would go on to trade Brown to the Chicago Bulls in February 2008. After playing out the season with Chicago, the guard signed a one-year deal with the Charlotte Bobcats but ended up being traded to Los Angeles during the  season.

It was with the Lakers where Brown found his longest tenure thus far. His three-year stint was moderately successful. The last two years saw Brown taking part in all 82 games of each season. It was the first time in his NBA career that Brown took part in an entire schedule of games.

Brown would also go on to play for the Phoenix Suns, San Antonio Spurs and New York Knicks. The stints in San Antonio and New York both took place in the 2013-14 season.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Hernandez Evidence to Be Tossed]]> Tue, 26 Aug 2014 21:41:16 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/AP296842589971.jpg

A Massachusetts judge has allowed some evidence to be suppressed in the murder trial of Aaron Hernandez, court documents show.

The former star Patriots tight end had asked the court to suppress the evidence — an iPhone, a Blackberry, an iPad and two iPad minis — which was obtained when his home was searched last June after the killing of Odin Lloyd.

Defense lawyers argued that that evidence was not part of the original search warrant and that a state trooper did not have the proper paperwork when he entered Hernandez's home.

Tuesday, the Bristol County Superior Court granted that motion, allowing that evidence to be thrown out.

Earlier this month, the court denied Hernandez's motion to exclude a digital video recorder, a hard drive and Hernandez's cell phone.

The hard drive allegedly contains files showing Hernandez holding the murder weapon and his movements around the time of the murder. The phone, according to prosecutors, had text messages Hernandez sent to Lloyd, as well as the former NFL star's alleged right hand man, Ernest Wallace, on the night of the killing.

Hernandez is charged with first-degree murder in the 2013 death of Lloyd. He is also charged with the murders of Daniel de Abreu and Safiro Furtado in Boston in 2012.

The Bristol County District Attorney's Office told NECN Tuesday afternoon that it cannot comment on the case, due to an ongoing gag order.

NECN will have more as this story develops.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[FSU's Fisher Emerging as Top QBs Coach]]> Tue, 26 Aug 2014 16:39:56 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/172*120/154488192.jpg

The foundation of Jimbo Fisher's coaching philosophy began during rides home with his father after Pop Warner games. His dad would pepper him in the car with a single question: Why?

John Fisher would ask the young quarterback why did he make a certain throw? Why didn't he make different decisions?

The talks continued through high school, and three decades later Florida State's Fisher has used those father-son bonding moments to arguably become the pre-eminent quarterback coach in college football.

Fisher has had eight quarterbacks drafted to the NFL since 2001, works with reigning Heisman winner Jamies Winston and two of his former Seminole disciples are expected to start for other major college programs this year.

"There's one thing I ask them: Why?" Fisher said. "Why'd you do that? Why did you not do that? Why was that successful? Why was that not successful?

"If you can't know why you did something and why you didn't, how are you going to repeat it? If you do it well, but you don't understand why you did it, when the moment comes that you have to repeat it In the game for the championship, you can't do it because you never understood in the first place."

Fisher, 48, lists former Indianapolis Colts offensive coordinator Tom Moore, Baltimore Ravens offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak, former Florida State coach Bobby Bowden and Alabama coach Nick Saban as major influences, but it was his father who first peppered him with the question, "Why?"

Fisher always played quarterback through college at Salem College and Samford, but was never the most athletic. His father constantly questioned Fisher with the goal being to outthink other players.

The lessons stuck.

Fisher helped turn JaMarcus Russell into the first overall pick in the 2007 NFL draft when he was offensive coordinator at LSU. Former Tiger Matt Flynn is the backup in Green Bay. Former FSU quarterback Christian Ponder was the No. 12 overall pick in 2011. E.J. Manuel was the first quarterback taken in the 2013 draft. Winston is a leading candidate to win his second Heisman trophy. Florida State transfers Clint Trickett and Jacob Coker are likely to start at West Virginia and Alabama, respectively.

Fisher is the only head coach in college football that has had three quarterbacks drafted in the first round since 2007, according to STATS LLC.

"I think a combination of things makes him really, really successful," said Tommy Bowden, who coached with Fisher at Auburn. "One, he played the position. He's an overachiever. He's extremely confident.

"He's a hard-nosed guy, coming from that coal-mining background with his father. ... He doesn't baby those guys."

Winston, Manuel and Ponder credit their success to how Fisher trains QBs mentally.

Fisher drills technique and fundamentals, but he holds quarterbacks accountable for everything in the offense.

"He'll test you in practice just to see how you respond," Manuel said. "He'll say things just to get you off your game and see if you can come and battle back because that's what's going to happen in a real game.

"Things aren't always going to go perfect. He wants to see if you have the mental makeup to bounce back."

The BCS championship victory was one of Fisher's proudest moments as a coach. Not because it validated his status in college football, but because of Winston's performance. He struggled in the first half and the Seminoles fell behind 21-3. Winston responded and eventually drove FSU on an 80-yard drive and threw the game-winning touchdown pass with 13 seconds remaining.

The top-ranked Seminoles begin their title defense Saturday against Oklahoma State in Arlington, Texas.

"His practices are so tough," Winston said of Fisher. "He's constantly on us. He's on us the hardest out of everyone. We are accountable for every mistake."

Part of Fisher's drive derives from a constant fear of failure. He uses that motivation to be a better coach, recruiter and teacher. He's never had another job outside of coaching and always yearned to be in charge. Fisher wanted that responsibility regardless of the sport.

"I wanted to be involved in play-calling," Fisher said. "I think I liked being in charge. I was competitive as a young kid. I wanted to decide that game, not nobody else. Whether we won or we lost."

Florida State runs a complex, quarterback-driven, pro-style offense designed to have an answer for every defensive coverage. Fisher compares it to math where there's a formula for each problem.

The quarterback is responsible for knowing where to go with the ball in every situation. The quarterbacks aren't only expected to regurgitate Fisher's ideas, but to come up with their own solutions. He gives homework assignments where they are tasked to come up with concepts to counter certain looks.

"I don't want to teach them everything," Fisher said. "I think the greatest teacher in the world is yourself. I don't want them to be robots. I don't want them to learn it because that's what I said. I want them to understand it. There's a difference."

It has made his QBs attractive to NFL teams.

"He put a lot of things on the quarterback ... with checks and everything," Ponder said. "That helps the team, getting the best look and the best play, and also helps you transition to the NFL game.

"Because especially in the offense now, there are so many checks and so much on the quarterback, I feel like from that offense I was prepared for this."

Photo Credit: Getty]]>
<![CDATA[QB Quinn Brady Says He's Been Cut by Dolphins]]> Tue, 26 Aug 2014 16:35:16 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/180418369.jpg

Quarterback Brady Quinn says he has been released by the Miami Dolphins.

Quinn announced the move Tuesday afternoon on Twitter, about an hour before the Dolphins had to meet an NFL deadline and officially pare their roster down to 75 players. They started the day with 88 spots on the roster.

Quinn says his time with the Dolphins "was short lived but I enjoyed every second." He also wished the remaining players and coaches well.

The Dolphins signed Quinn on Aug. 12. He completed all four of his pass attempts for 22 yards in his lone preseason appearance for Miami.

The move essentially ensures that Matt Moore will be the backup to Ryan Tannehill when the season begins Sept. 7 against the New England Patriots.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Stanton Hits 150th Career Home Run in Win]]> Tue, 26 Aug 2014 08:22:22 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/454170798.jpg

The Miami Marlins earned a win on Monday against the best team in baseball with their 7-1 victory over the Los Angeles Angels.

Giancarlo Stanton made history during the win with the 150th home run of his career. The majestic shot went deep into the L.A. night and drew gasps from the crowd. It was a three-run home run for Stanton and it put the Marlins up by seven runs at the time.

Prior to his 33th home run of the year, the Angels walked Stanton twice, which has been the norm for the slugger this season. One of the many statistical categories that Stanton currently leads the National League in is walks.

It was a big win for the Marlins who had come off two tough defeats at the hands of the Colorado Rockies. Those losses had pushed Miami back under .500 and cost them chances to move up in the Wild Card standings. This victory did in fact move the Marlins up a game as they now sit only three back of a playoff spot.

Jarred Cosart continued to dazzle as a Marlin with his third straight strong start. The right-hander who was acquired on July 31st gave Miami 7.2 innings of one-run ball. It was the 11th win of the year for Cosart and it lowered his E.R.A. to 3.98.

Thus far in four games for the Marlins, Cosart is 2-1 with a 2.08 E.R.A. and a sparkling 1.000 WHIP.

The Marlins will look to move back over .500 on Tuesday when they send Nathan Eovaldi to the mound.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Marlins Drop Critical Series in Colorado]]> Mon, 25 Aug 2014 06:20:51 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/454096558.jpg

The Miami Marlins lost 7-4 to the Colorado Rockies on Sunday and dropped a critical series against a team out of contention.

The Marlins had an opportunity once again to gain ground in the Wild Card race and failed to capitalize. The loss moves Miami under .500 and is a very poor start to a nine-game three-city road trip.

Brad Hand didn't help the Marlins much as he put them in a hole quickly. After one inning of play, the Rockies already held a 3-0 advantage on the back of two home run swings. Hand would mostly settle in after that but the damage was done.

The left-hander who remains a candidate to be designated for assignment allowed four runs on seven hits in his 4.1 innings on the mound. Hand also walked three and struck out three in the short outing.

Brad Penny came out of the bullpen and struggled mightily in his first appearance as a reliever. The veteran surrendered three runs on six hits in 2.1 innings which put the game away. The big blow came on a two-run hit in the seventh inning.

Offensively, the Marlins left an army on the bases for a third straight day. Eight men were left on by Miami and the team went 4-12 with runners in scoring position.

Adeiny Hechavarria had the biggest day at the dish for the Marlins picking up two triples to give him nine on the year. The three-base hits came in his first two at-bats of the game. The shortstop also scored a run along the way.

Miami will head to Los Angeles for a series that starts Monday against the Angels. Scheduled to start for the Marlins is Jarred Cosart.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[NFL Player Allegedly Caught in Fight at South Beach Club: Report]]> Mon, 25 Aug 2014 23:15:10 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/mike+evans.jpg

A night out at Club Dream ended up more like a bad dream for the latest NFL player to get in trouble on South Beach.

Cell phone video obtained by TMZ allegedly shows Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans yelling at bouncers outside Dream Nightclub near Washington Avenue and 15th Street.

A Miami Beach Police report filed in March says Evans was asked to leave the nightclub after a disturbance and was escorted out.

The video apparently shows the aftermath of a fight that ended with Evans throwing punches at the bouncers, jumping over a car hood and yelling at Dream staff.

Evans isn't the first NFL player to get in trouble on South Beach. Last month, NFL twins Mike and Maurkice Pouncey were accused of assaulting Ricky Vasquez at Cameo Nightclub.

Like the Pouncey twins, Evans was not arrested following the alleged altercation. Police said they detained Evans following the incident, but did not find probable cause for an arrest.

Evans released the following statement regarding the incident:

"I regret that this incident that happened nearly six months ago has become a distraction to my team and I look forward to continuing to prepare for the start of my rookie season with the Buccaneers."

The team also released a statement saying it considers the matter closed. Dream Nightclub did not answer phone calls made by NBC 6.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Richie Incognito Visiting With Bucs: Report]]> Mon, 25 Aug 2014 13:09:23 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/1587046862.jpg

Richie Incognito could be making his return to the National Football League as he is set to meet with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Monday, according to ESPN.

Incognito has been on the outside looking in since he was suspended by the Miami Dolphins last November for taking part in a bullying scandal. The highly publicized matter put a dark cloud over the season for the Dolphins. In the end, Incognito's suspension was labeled as being for conduct detrimental to the team.

The suspension itself was lifted on February 4, but with Incognito a free agent at season's end, his time in Miami had come to an end.

Until Monday's scheduled meeting in Tampa Bay, Incognito's name had not been seen or heard much in recent months. It's not a guarantee that Tampa Bay brings Incognito on board but it is considered a possibility.

Incognito played for parts of four seasons in Miami and there is a decent chance that he would still be with the team on a new contract if not for the scandal. The guard did a good job while with Miami and even earned a Pro Bowl appearance in 2012.

Also in 2012, Incognito would pick up another honor. The Pro Football Writers Association in South Florida voted him as the "Good Guy Award" winner. This award is given to the player that is considered to help the media the most.

While Incognito prepares to move into his next chapter, another former Dolphin right in the mix of the scandal continues to make his own headlines. Jonathan Martin has started in all three preseason games for the San Francisco 49ers and could end up being a starter in week one. 

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Big Fourth Quarter Leads Miami Past Dallas]]> Sun, 24 Aug 2014 09:44:04 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/169*120/454045514.jpg

The Miami Dolphins scored a pair of touchdowns in the last six minutes of Saturday's game to come away with a 25-20 victory over the Dallas Cowboys.

Trailing 20-11 with 5:46 to go in the game, Matt Moore connected on a 27-yard pass to Gator Haskins for a touchdown. Orleans Darkwa would follow by taking in a two-point conversion attempt to make it a one-point game.

About four minutes later, it'd be Darkwa again who ran into the end zone for a 1-yard rushing touchdown that put Miami up five. The two-point conversion attempt would fail but the score ended up being enough for the Dolphins.

Moore ended up 12 of 19 on his pass attempts for 172 yards. The quarterback was picked off once in addition to the aforementioned touchdown pass. Moore had a 88.0 passer rating in the game.

Of note was the fact, that Brady Quinn saw zero snaps. It was unlikely that Quinn would make the team as a backup and that becomes even more evident after this contest. The former first round pick remains likely to be cut.

Before Moore took over, Ryan Tannehill played the entire first half as well as the start of the second half. It was a tough day for the starting QB as he was only 13 of 21 on his attempts for 119 yards and was also the victim of an interception.

A week after accumulating a paltry rushing total, Miami looked a lot better with its ground attack on Saturday. The offense combined for 200 rushing yards with 70 yards coming from Darkwa and an additional 64 yards from Knowshon Moreno.

Miami will wrap up its postseason on Thursday in a game against the St. Louis Rams at Sun Life Stadium.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Marlins Fall in 13th After Cishek Blows Save]]> Sun, 24 Aug 2014 09:41:03 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/454035994.jpg

The Miami Marlins lost a long tough game to the Colorado Rockies on Saturday by a final score of 5-4 in 13 innings.

It was a big blow to the Marlins who had a chance to move up a game in the Wild Card standings. Earlier in the day, the San Francisco Giants fell to the Washington Nationals and a win would have moved Miami to within three games of a playoff spot. With the loss, the Marlins remain four games back.

Tom Koehler did about as much as he could be asked to do by hurling seven innings of three-run ball at Coors Field. Koehler allowed eight hits but walked none which is an important aspect of pitching in Colorado. Free passes often lead to runs especially in Denver.

After the Marlins scored a run in the top of the ninth, Steve Cishek entered looking for the save. The closer served up a game-tying home run instead to Corey Dickerson. It'd be Dickerson again in the 13th who brought home the game-winner on a single.

That winning hit came off of Sam Dyson who was working his second inning of relief. The Rockies had two hits to begin the inning, a double and then the aforementioned single. After a long game, it was over in a blink of an eye for the Marlins.

Prior to the letdown in the bullpen, Miami was poised for victory thanks to efforts from most of the lineup. For a second straight day, every position player in the starting lineup was on base at least one time. Five players had two-hit games including Giancarlo Stanton who doubled for the 28th time on the year. Jarrod Saltalamacchia also had a two-base hit to give him 16 on the season.

The Marlins will send Brad Hand to the mound on Sunday as they look to win the series.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Ledecky Sets World Record in 1,500 Freestyle]]> Sun, 24 Aug 2014 05:48:35 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/AP973055938873%281%29.jpg

U.S. teenager Katie Ledecky sliced almost six seconds off her own world mark in the women's 1,500-meter freestyle on Sunday, winning in 15 minutes, 28.36 seconds to post her second world record in as many nights at the Pan Pacific championships.

The 17-year-old Ledecky improved her record in the 400 freestyle on Saturday. She collected her fifth gold medal of the meet in convincing fashion in cool but clear conditions on the last night of competition.

It was the third time in 13 months she's set the mark in the 1,500, and the second in three months since her 15:34.23 at Shenandoah on June 19.

Ledecky holds world records in the 400, 800 and 1,500-meter freestyle events.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC 6 South Florida

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Dan Marino Returning to Miami Dolphins as Special Advisor]]> Sun, 24 Aug 2014 18:26:56 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/DanMarino14.jpg

Dan Marino is coming back to the Miami Dolphins. The Hall of Fame quarterback has agreed to accept a position with the team.

The Dolphins released a statement Sunday from team owner Stephen Ross and Marino confirming the story, which NBC 6 broke Saturday night.

“Dan is and will always be an important part of the Miami Dolphins and we are excited to get him involved in a more formal way,” Ross said. “Dan is unquestionably one of the greatest players in NFL history and his enthusiasm and passion for the Dolphins is inspiring to everyone here."

"I'm grateful for the opportunity to serve in this role. I have always considered myself a Dolphin for life and I look forward to supporting the organization anyway I can,” Marino added. “Stephen Ross is a passionate guy who is committed to building a first-class, winning organization. I'm excited about the future of the team and where the organization is headed.”

Marino will serve as a special advisor to Dolphins owner Stephen Ross and C.E.O. Tom Garfinkel. The team says Marino will work with the organization in a variety of different capacities. Marino has been more visible at Dolphins camp lately, watching practice Thursday as well as being in Davie for the ALS ice bucket challenge the week before. For 17 years, Marino was the face of the franchise and both the team and the 52-year-old have had mutual interest in finding a role for him within the organization.

In his career with the Dolphins, Marino played in 242 games (240 starts) and was 4,967-8,358 (59.4 percent) for 61,361 yards, 420 touchdowns and 252 interceptions for an 86.4 passing efficiency rating. Marino holds 31 Dolphins regular season team records (43 overall, including playoffs) and is tied for three others (seven, including playoffs). Marino also holds five NFL regular season records and is tied for six others. He was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame on February 5, 2005 and enshrined on August 7, 2005. Marino’s No. 13 jersey became the second Dolphins uniform number to be retired, on Sunday, September 17, 2000, at halftime of the Dolphins-Baltimore Ravens game at Sun Life Stadium, where he was inducted into the Dolphins Honor Roll. He was also a charter inductee in the Dolphins Walk of Fame on December 4, 2011.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Chicago Beats Las Vegas in LLWS]]> Sun, 24 Aug 2014 10:56:15 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/245*120/jrw+win+us+title.jpg

Chicago's Jackie Robinson West All-Stars took the U.S. title in the Little League World Series with a 7-5 win over Las Vegas' Mountain Ridge Saturday.

The team started off strong, matching Nevada's three-run start and taking the lead in the second inning. The team maintained their one-point lead, keeping Nevada from scoring in the second, third, and fourth innings.

Nevada regained their lead following a home run in the fifth inning, but Jackie Robinson West tied the score with a hit from Joshua Houston. Chicago then scored again later in the fifth inning, bringing the score to 7-5, which ultimately brought them to victory.

“Throughout the Little League World Series, Jackie Robinson West has played with enthusiasm, energy and a whole lot of heart," Gov. Pat Quinn said in a statement. "While they have already won the hearts of fans across the country now they are officially the U.S. Champions."

Mayor Rahm Emanuel applauded the players for becoming only the third team ever from Illinois to reach the championship game of the Little League World Series.

"The City of Chicago could not be prouder of them," Emanuel said in a statement. "Their positive attitude and success on the field has rallied people from every neighborhood to support these kids and they continue to demonstrate why they are the pride of Chicago. What a comeback. What a win!"

Supporters, including Emanuel and Quinn, gathered Saturday at an official watch party for the team, held at the Salvation Army Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Center, located at 1250 W. 119th St.

Chicago's Chance the Rapper also came to cheer on the team.

Despite rain, fans also gathered on State Street, in front of the Chicago Theater, between Randolph and Lake Streets, to watch the game live on a big screen.

Two more watch parties are scheduled for 2 p.m. at both locations for Sunday's game.

The little league team from the South Side faced off against Philadelphia Thursday, winning 6-5 against the team that made national headlines for their star female pitcher Mo'ne Davis.

The team continued its historic run with Saturday's rematch against Las Vegas. The West champions beat JRW in four innings in a mercy-rule game last Sunday behind five homers.

Chicago now moves on to the World Series Championship game against South Korea Sunday. Saturday's losing teams will play in a consolation game Sunday morning.

The success of Jackie Robinson West, comprised of all black players, marks the team's first appearance in the Little League World Series in 31 years.

Their popularity has continued to grow throughout their journey, sparking support from Major League Baseball players and even Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler.

After Thursday's game, Emanuel said win or lose, the city will hold a parade for the team.

"No matter what happens these kids are champs," Emanuel said. "We will have a parade respectful of them because they are winners whatever the score is."

<![CDATA[Boy With 1 Arm Is Golf Prodigy]]> Sat, 23 Aug 2014 17:48:26 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/one+arm+3+year+old+tommy+morrisey.jpg

Summertime for 3-year-old golf prodigy Tommy Morrissey means days spent hitting 100-yard drives over lakes at an Atlantic County country club. He steps up to the tee, lines up his driver, hesitates for just a moment, and cracks the golf ball over the water…all with one arm.

Tommy was born missing his right hand and part of his right arm below the elbow.

As he grew up in his hometown of Juniper, Fla., Tommy would watch golf on television with his father Joe and mother Marcia Lee. When he was about 18 months old, Tommy’s parents noticed that he was very interested in the sport, standing in front of the television and mimicking the golfer’s swings.

They gave him a set of plastic golf clubs, brought him out on the range, and saw he was a natural from his first perfect contact.

“His true ability is to look and learn,” Joe said. “I have given him very little instruction.”

When he was a little over 2-years-old, Tommy began using an iPad to look up golf tutorial videos on his own.

“I walked in, I asked what he’s doing, and he said, ‘Daddy, I’m taking a golf lesson’,” Joe said.

At night, teddy bears would not accompany Tommy to bed. Instead, he was tucked in with an array of at least 7 clubs.

“One time he refused to go to bed, and [I] finally got him to go to sleep and he insisted on this club or that club,” Joe said. “I put him down, and my wife and I heard him yelling, ‘Mommy, Daddy, you forgot my putter!’”

Tommy has since switched to real clubs, having torn apart multiple sets of his old plastic ones. The weight of the clubs is a challenge for him, but Jeff LeFevre, Golf Director for the Linwood Country Club where Tommy and his father play during their summers at the Jersey Shore, says that difficulty does not hold the prodigy back.

“It’s such a difficult game with two hands, two arms,” LeFevre said. “And here we are, a 3-year-old with one arm with absolutely great rhythym, great set-up…truly, truly a golf prodigy.”

Tommy doesn't see himself as different than other children his age. He simply calls his shorter arm “Nemo” after the fish with one small fin in Finding Nemo.

In addition to his love of golf, Tommy plays many other sports, punting a football or hitting a baseball out of the park.

Joe and his wife say that while having one arm has been a challenge for Tommy, in the end it is also a gift.

“He has been able to bring grown men to tears on the driving range. . .In his short life, he has been able to inspire many, make people second guess their own capabilities,” Joe said. “…He is doing it with probably one of the most powerful tools, and that is the innocence of a child.”

In the end, Tommy is just a kid wanting to have fun playing the sport that he loves.

“He does like to hit the ball in the water, but that’s ‘cause he’s 3,” Joe said. “He doesn’t understand that’s bad yet.”