Month: September 2019

As Sports Data Evolve the Public May Get Left Behind

The world of sports research has grown exponentially over the past decade, a trend nowhere more apparent than at the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference, the industry’s highest-profile exhibition.Sloan has ballooned from 175 attendees at its inaugural event in 2007 to nearly 3,000 visitors a year ago at the sprawling Boston Convention and Exhibition Center. (This year’s attendance was slightly lower because of a smaller space, but that wasn’t a function of decreased demand. According to conference organizer Jessica Gelman, the waiting list ran into the thousands.)The flowering of sports analytics has brought lots of attention, and money, to the field. That’s good and bad. Higher-tech statistics require greater investment, which, in turn, introduces the possibility that leagues will be less willing to share new data with the public.Several notable data projects have been featured in Sloan’s panels over the years. Just last week, Major League Baseball Advanced Media (MLBAM) announced an optical-tracking technology to replace the PITCHf/x system. What does this portend for the future of open-source analytics?MLBAM CEO Bob Bowman gave assurances that “fans will be able to see these data.” I hope that he means history will repeat itself. The original PITCHf/x data was stored in public files, which early pioneers of pitch analysis quickly learned to use. Bloggers and hobbyists did such good work that teams began hiring them; Mike Fast, Josh Kalk and other PITCHf/x gurus jumped into the big leagues (yours truly was hired by the Atlanta Hawks). Thus began a symbiotic relationship between MLB insiders and outsiders, made possible by a willingness to give smart people free data and let them run with it.But you can’t help but sense the possibility that the next wave of advanced data won’t be as accessible to amateurs. The tug-of-war between intellectual curiosity and monetization serves as a microcosm of what Sloan is about. It exists in the murky territory between trade fairs and academic conferences, a stark change from its earlier, smaller incarnations.Sloan’s growth has mirrored the growth of sports analytics, but it also underscores the increasing ways in which businesses and teams are looking to profit from a new generation of sports data. I just hope they don’t shut out the public in the process. read more

Former Patriots TE Aaron Hernandez Serving a Life Sentence

Former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez was serving a life sentence for murder. (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia, Pool, Fil)BOSTON (AP) — Former NFL star Aaron Hernandez, who was serving a life sentence for a murder conviction and just days ago was acquitted of a double murder, died after hanging himself in his prison cell early Wednesday, Massachusetts prisons officials said.Hernandez, 27, was found by guards in his cell at the Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center in Shirley just after 3 a.m., Department of Correction spokesman Christopher Fallon said in a statement.The former New England Patriots tight end was pronounced dead at UMass Memorial-HealthAlliance Hospital in Leominster about an hour later.Hernandez’s death comes the same day the Patriots are making their visit to the White House to mark their Super Bowl win. Team spokesman Stacey James said the Patriots were aware of the reports of Hernandez’s death but didn’t anticipate the club commenting Wednesday.Hernandez was in a single cell in a general population housing unit in the maximum-security state prison. He hanged himself using a bed sheet that he attached to a cell window, Fallon said.Hernandez tried to block the cell door from the inside by jamming the door with various items, Fallon said.Fallon said he’s not aware of any suicide note written by Hernandez and stressed that an investigation is ongoing. He said that officials had no concern that Hernandez was planning on taking his own life, and if there was a concern about his well-being, Hernandez would have been transferred to a mental health unit.Hernandez was moved to tears on Friday after he was acquitted of the 2012 fatal shootings of Daniel de Abreu and Safiro Furtado in Boston. Just before his acquittal, Hernandez was seen blowing kisses to the little girl he fathered with fiancée Shayanna Jenkins. Cameras captured the tender exchange.But, Hernandez was still serving a life sentence without the possibility of parole for his conviction in the 2013 shooting of Odin Lloyd, a semi-professional football player who was dating his fiancée’s sister.He was tried but acquitted in the slayings of de Abreu and Furtado, whom prosecutors contended were gunned down after one of the men accidentally spilled a drink on Hernandez in a Boston nightclub. The jury in that case found Hernandez not guilty of first-degree murder but convicted him of unlawful possession of a gun, and the judge sentenced him to an additional four to five years in prison — separate from his existing life sentence.Hernandez’s lawyers did not immediately respond to a request for comment.Massachusetts State Police remain on the scene investigating the death.Hernandez grew up in Connecticut and played for the Patriots from 2010 to 2012. The team released him in June 2013, shortly after he was arrested in Lloyd’s killing. read more

Baseballs Richest Just Got Much Richer

Washington Nationals+2.7 The Dodgers and Yankees punctuated a quiet deadline with a pair of last-minute trades, acquiring starting pitchers Yu Darvish and Sonny Gray, respectively. Both players strengthen already formidable rotations, readying their teams for long runs into October, and the trades cap a frenetic cycle of trade activity for the Dodgers and Yankees. Two of the richest teams in baseball are now even better.Going back to 2009, the Yankees and Dodgers tended to be quiet at the deadline, preferring to acquire players through free agency instead. They picked up only an average of about one win above replacement at the trade deadline since 2009. But this year, the two wealthiest teams in baseball decided to buy. The rich get richerTotal wins above replacement (WAR) added through trades, 2017 Chicago Cubs+4.6 Kansas City Royals+2.4 They weren’t the only good teams who did so. The Dodgers and Yankees are two of the six teams who gained the most value this trade deadline, and four of the top six are leading their respective divisions this year.Like the Dodgers and Yankees, most of the contending teams have traded for starting pitchers. Darvish and Gray are two of the best options available. Each is a nearly mirror image of the other in the events a pitcher can control most — strikeouts, walks, and home runs allowed. Both pitchers have recent injury troubles from which they’ve bounced back to produce ace-level seasons. Both command dazzling arrays of pitches, fooling hitters as much with unpredictability as raw stuff. Each ought to boost their teams’ playoff fortunes substantially.Not like the Dodgers’ playoff fortunes were ever in doubt, even with a recent injury to ace Clayton Kershaw. A mere 43 games over .500, the Dodgers have marched to a 14-game division lead while boasting one of the strongest teams (by Elo) in history.The Yankees, meanwhile, have capitalized on unexpected performances from young players like Aaron Judge and Clint Frazier, surprising resurgences from veterans like CC Sabathia and Matt Holliday, and career years from journeymen like Aaron Hicks. The confluence of production has New York narrowly edging out the Red Sox in the American League East so far. It’s hard to say any good New York Yankees season has come from “out of nowhere,” but projections didn’t expect them to be this good this year.These trades should leave baseball’s other contenders very scared. The Houston Astros have mashed their way to 68 wins so far, but they barely improved at this year’s deadline. While other teams traded for aces, the Astros managed to get erratic southpaw Francisco Liriano, a choice that could haunt them, especially given that their top two starters — Dallas Keuchel and Lance McCullers — have both battled through injury and underperformance in the past two months.If the Yankees and Dodgers’ 2017 prospects weren’t frustrating enough for their rivals, it gets worse: Neither of these teams are going anywhere, anytime soon. Baseball America puts their farm systems as the second and fourth-best in baseball entering 2017, and these trades didn’t get rid of the teams’ best prospects. As if that wasn’t enough, the Dodgers and Yankees also boast some of the most promising youngsters in baseball, with players like Judge and Cody Bellinger exceeding expectations.Both the Yankees and Dodgers are young, rich, and talented. The other 28 teams in baseball better watch out.CORRECTION (July 31, 8:24 p.m.): An earlier version of this story misstated how far above .500 the Dodgers are. They are 43 games above .500, not 33. New York Yankees+4.2 Atlanta Braves+2.1 Los Angeles Dodgers+2.0 Sources: MLB, Baseball Prospectus TEAMTOTAL WAR ADDED read more

Bianca Andreescu Wasnt Afraid Of Serena Williams — Or Any Of Tenniss

As women’s tennis continues its youth movement, it just might have found its next young star.Bianca Andreescu, just 19 years old, captured her first major title on Saturday with speed, power and confidence. To win the U.S. Open, she dominated Serena Williams — the most dominant player in the history of tennis. And that may have been proof of Andreescu’s best asset: her ability to play her best against the best.The Canadian has never lost to a top-ranked opponent in her young career. Since her 2019 season began in Auckland, New Zealand — where she beat then-No. 3 Caroline Wozniacki — Andreescu is 8-0 against players ranked in the WTA Top 10. Going undefeated against the tennis elite to start a career is rare for even top players. Serena Williams went 5-3 in her first eight Top 10 matches, while Venus Williams won two and lost six. Monica Seles was 4-4, Steffi Graf was 2-6, and Maria Sharapova didn’t win a match, a perfect (or perfectly imperfect) 0-8.Andreescu has been nearly unbeatable this season, with a record of 43-4 and a streak of 13 straight matches won. When she won a title at Indian Wells in March, Andreescu won three-set duels against then-No. 6 Elina Svitolina in the semifinal and No. 8 Angelique Kerber in the final. She beat Kerber again later that month in Miami. In Toronto, Andreescu upset No. 5. Kiki Bertens and No. 3 Karolína Plíšková before her final win over Serena Williams, who retired four games into the match with back spasms.Before this U.S. Open, Andreescu had never played in the main event — failing to make it out of qualifying the previous two seasons. That’s also rare. According to the WTA, Seles was the last woman to win a major in her debut, winning the Australian Open in 1991 at the age of 17. Andreescu’s ranking, No. 178 at the end of the 2018 season, is now No. 5.“It’s so crazy, man,” Andreescu said in her post-final press conference on Saturday. “I’ve been dreaming of this moment for the longest time.”Andreescu showed on Saturday why she has rocketed to the top of the rankings. She serves well, even against a returner as deadly as Williams. Her forehand and backhand shots are deep and fast. She also plays with creativity, especially on drop shots.While Andreescu was in a zone, Williams at times looked lost. The 37-year-old had eight double faults on her serve and landed her first serves just 44 percent of the time.1Before the Open, she was landing 60 percent of her first serves for the season. She hit 33 unforced errors to Andreescu’s 17. And Williams’s second serve made Andreescu even more dangerous. Williams won just 30 percent of the points on her 43 second serves after winning 48 percent of those points this season going into the Open.Williams gave Andreescu the credit, but she was frustrated with her own play after the loss. “I honestly don’t think Serena showed up,” Williams said. “I have to kind of figure out how to get her to show up in Grand Slam finals.”Williams has lost eight straight sets in major finals since 2018, in matches at Wimbledon and the U.S. Open. But she’s not the only women’s player to struggle for sustained success. Kerber beat Williams in Wimbledon last year but has fallen off lately, losing this year in the first round in the U.S. Open and French Open and in the second round at Wimbledon. Naomi Osaka won two straight majors, at last year’s U.S. Open and this year’s Australian Open, but she lost early in the French Open and in the first round in Wimbledon. (In this U.S. Open, she lost to Bencic in straight sets in the fourth round).Essentially, no one has any idea who will win a women’s Grand Slam these days. There’s a lot of up-and-coming talent, like Cori “Coco” Gauff, a 15-year-old who reached the third round at the U.S. Open. That’s why Andreescu is both a surprise and totally expected — because anything can happen.“It’s been a crazy ride this year,” Andreescu said. “I can definitely get used to this feeling.” read more

Ohio State mens lacrosse falls to Hofstra in defensive battle

OSU junior attacker J.T. Blubaugh (9) during a game against Detroit on Feb. 13 at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center.Credit: Miles McQuinn | Lantern PhotographerThe offense came a little too late for the Ohio State men’s lacrosse team on Saturday, as the Buckeyes fell to No. 13 Hofstra by a score of 8-5.After a defensive struggle throughout the first three quarters, the OSU offense came alive in the fourth with three goals. However, the Pride matched them goal for goal in the period, handing the Scarlet and Gray their second loss of the season to bring their record to 5-2.The Buckeyes’ only two goals in the first three periods came from freshman attacker Jack Jasinski in the first quarter on an assist from junior attacker Austin Shanks and senior attacker Ryan Hunter in the second quarter on an assist from Jasinski.OSU was only able to attempt 10 shots in the first two quarters combined. Although the Buckeyes were able to match that number in the third quarter alone, they were unable to find the back of the net in the period.Much of that was because of the play of Hofstra goalie Jack Concannon. The sophomore, who came into Saturday’s game ranked fifth in the nation with a save percentage of 62.8 percent, had 14 saves on the day and stifled the OSU offense for much of the game.The play of the defense was a bright spot for the Buckeyes.Hofstra senior attacker and 2016 Colonial Athletic Association Preseason Player of the Year Sam Llinares was held scoreless on the day on four shot attempts. OSU senior defenseman Robby Haus was able to limit Llinares’ impact on the game, usually with the help of a double team.Though Llinares was held in check, Hofstra junior attacker Josh Byrne scored two goals to bring his team-high number of goals on the year to 16. Junior midfielder Brian von Bargen scored three goals and senior midfielder Korey Hendrickson added two more, in large part due to the increased attention paid to Llinares and Byrne.Hunter added his second goal of the game for OSU with 11:06 left in the fourth quarter to cut the deficit to 6-4, but a pair of Hofstra goals sealed the game for the Pride.OSU is set to get a chance to bounce back on Tuesday after a few days’ rest, but things don’t appear to get any easier. The Buckeyes are slated to play the No. 6 Towson Tigers at Ohio Stadium at 7 p.m., before traveling to Colorado to take on the No. 2 Denver Pioneers on March 12. read more

Mens hockey team lets potential sweep slip away

With a 2-1 lead after two periods, the Ohio State men’s ice hockey team (5-7-1, 2-5-1-1 CCHA) seemed poised to “sweep” a two-game series with the No. 14-ranked University of Alaska-Fairbanks (8-5-3, 5-4-3-2 CCHA) Saturday at Nationwide Arena. But the Buckeyes quickly lost control of the game and gave up four third-period goals, including three in the final 5:30 of play, as Alaska skated to a 5-2 win. “It was a good team effort tonight,” Alaska coach Dallas Ferguson said. “We were missing a couple of guys but we feel like we have good depth at our positions. The guys did what they had to do to be successful.” OSU senior forward John Albert gave OSU a 1-0 lead with his wrap-around goal just 2:16 into the first period. Freshman forward Alex Lippincott gave the Buckeyes a 2-0 lead in the second period, and OSU appeared to be in control of the game. Momentum quickly shifted to Alaska’s favor when OSU junior forward Danny Dries received a major penalty for hitting an Alaska player from behind. The Buckeyes had to play a man down for five minutes. Alaska scored on the power play, the start of a 5-0 run. After the goal, OSU senior defenseman Corey Toy had to sit two minutes for a slashing penalty, giving Alaska a 5-3 man advantage. OSU coach Mark Osiecki said the two penalties in the second period changed the game in Alaska’s favor. “The difference in the game was the five-minute major and the two-minute minor in the first 40 minutes,” he said. “The penalties killed us. We wasted so much energy killing the penalties that it wore on us the rest of the game.” Despite the disappointing loss, OSU did not leave the series empty-handed. In the first game of the series Friday, the teams skated to a 3-3 tie, and OSU won in a shootout. OSU trailed 3-2 into the final minute of the game, but with just 10 seconds remaining, Dries scored for the Buckeyes to force overtime. Neither team scored in the five-minute overtime period, so the teams went into a shootout. OSU goalie Cal Heeter stopped all three of Alaska’s shootout attempts as Dries scored for OSU, giving the Buckeyes a shootout victory, 1-0. The game is considered a tie in the NCAA standings, but the shootout win benefits OSU in the CCHA conference standings. The Buckeyes will now turn their attention to Michigan as OSU starts a two-game series with the Wolverines on Friday. Michigan is second in the CCHA, but Albert said OSU will be up to the challenge if the Buckeyes play as one unit. “We have to play as a team. We can’t play as individuals,” he said. “If we do that, I hope we can get two wins next weekend.” read more

Commentary Kerry Coombs makes his presence known as Ohio State football kicks

As he roamed the field for the first practice of Ohio State’s spring football season, coach Urban Meyer’s demeanor was calm. He was in control. The field was his. The loudest guy out there was not the former Florida head coach, but the newest hire on Meyer’s staff, the cornerbacks coach from the University of Cincinnati. Kerry Coombs, hired after Bill Sheridan’s departure to the NFL, was the most vocal and most engaging coach to watch on the field. Working with the cornerbacks in position drills, Coombs took command of the situation, barked out orders and asserted himself as a presence on the field you would expect from a long-time coach – not one that has been on the team for less than a month. Cornerback position drills included more than 20 minutes of footwork, ranging from side-to-side fast-feet drills, drills to keep the corners low and drills designed to have them catch a tennis ball. Coombs was the loudest on the field, yelling things such as “Stay down,” or “Get low,” or my favorite, “You have to catch the ball!” Coombs, served as the associate head coach for the Bearcats, and also as Cincinnati’s special teams coordinator, defensive pass game coordinator and defensive backs coach. Coombs was constantly challenging the corners to get lower and faster in their drills, and was not shy in making fun of redshirt sophomore defensive back Adam Griffin for his height. Griffin is listed at 5 feet 8 inches. “Adam,” Coombs shouted. “You’re already too low, I can’t even see you back there.” If Coombs’ passion is any indication of the kind of energy Meyer’s new staff will bring to the field, all signs are pointing in the right direction for the 2012 Buckeyes. Running with the 1’s The linebacker position will provide solid competition for the three starting spots, as senior Storm Klein was running with the backups on Wednesday. Redshirt senior Etienne Sabino, sophomore Ryan Shazier and sophomore Curtis Grant were running in the three linebacker spots. The offensive line position will also provide interesting matchups in spring ball, as the anchors of the offensive line will not be returning next year. Players stepping in to fill the shoes of Mike Adams, Michael Brewster and J.B Shugarts include junior Andrew Norwell, redshirt junior Jack Mewhort, redshirt junior Corey Linsley, redshirt junior Marcus Hall, tight end-turned-lineman senior Reid Fragel and many others. Also impressing on the first day of practice was freshman Taylor Decker. read more

Andrea Kacsits netting success on off court for Buckeye volleyball

Sophomore middle blocker Andrea Kacsits (4) scans the court during a match against Michigan Sept. 27 at St. John Arena. OSU won, 3-1.Credit: Mark Batke / Lantern photographerAndrea Kacsits has a future in volleyball, but it may have nothing to do with her standout play on the court.Kacsits, a sophomore middle blocker for the No. 24 Ohio State women’s volleyball team, has already started 48 matches for the Buckeyes, including each of OSU’s 20 games this season. She is one of five Buckeyes to record triple-digit kills in 2013 with 113.Senior defensive specialist Julianne Mandolfo said Kacsits is a unique player.“She’s one of the hardest working teammates I’ve ever played with,” Mandolfo said. “And the most passionate about everything and what she does.”Mandolfo called Kacsits a “powerful leader” on the team.Coach Geoff Carlston said Kacsits is important to the team, on and off the court.“She’s a great person for our team and our university as a whole and she’s hard working,” he said. “She brings a lot of positivity to our program when it comes to the outside community.”That hard work and positivity has paid off for Kacsits, as she is starting to get some recognition for her work outside of the university as well.The Rockford, Mich., native began an internship at Sports Imports over the summer, and has thrived in her new role.Sports Imports is a sports equipment company specializing in volleyball net systems. Kacsits’ job is to design the top net tape and poll pads for teams ranging from middle school to the collegiate level.“When you order a top net tape for your net, or you can order pads for the polls, I make those for different colleges, middle schools, high schools (and) sports clubs,” she said.Kacsits, a communication major at OSU, said teams send in order forms with specific details and she mocks up a design and sends them back to her internship leader. The internship leader then sends the examples back to the coach, who can decide whether or not to go forward with the design.When the Buckeyes travel to Madison, Wis., Nov. 17, Kacsits and the Buckeyes might get a chance to see her designs in person.“I did Wisconsin actually,” she said. “So when we go to Wisconsin, if they bought them, I’ll see my pads.”Sports imports marketing director Meghan Simons, who played for Carlston when he coached at Ohio University, said Kacsits designed the pads for the Side-Out Foundation’s Dig Pink fundraiser and helped design the pads for this year’s NCAA Tournament.Outside hitter Katie Mitchell, the only other sophomore on the team, said she has her own ideas for what should happen if the Buckeyes make a run in the tournament.“It would be awesome and I think we should probably politely ask to take (the pads) home afterwards,” Mitchell said. “Having a teammate with that kind of talent and ability is pretty neat.”While she has since found success, Kacsits wasn’t always on track to pursuing design.“I started my freshman year in health sciences and I hated it, just, so much,” Kacsits said.She added that she had done graphic designs for her high school teams and had always enjoyed it. After a conversation with her mother, Kacsits decided she should get back into design.At that point, she went to Carlston to tell him her plans, and he put her in contact with Simons.“(Carlston) gave me (Simons’) number and she needed an intern for the summer,” Kacsits said. “She liked my work and we just vibed really well so I got this opportunity.”Kacsits said her internship is a huge opportunity, especially since she had no job experience going in.Carlston said it is clear that Kacsits is enjoying herself, but also working hard.“Andrea is so excited about it, and she’s getting a lot out of it and learning a ton every single day,” Carlston said.If the Buckeyes want any chance to see designs created by one of their own at the NCAA Tournament, they will first have to fight their way through the rest Big Ten season.OSU is scheduled to host No. 13 Nebraska Friday at 7 p.m. in St. John Arena after coming off three games on the road. read more

Season preview Boom or bust for Columbus Blue Jackets in 201718

The Columbus Blue Jackets’ Cam Atkinson (13) is congratulated on his goal in the first period against the Edmonton Oilers at Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio, on Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2017. Credit: Courtesy of TNSAnticipation has reached an apex and optimism is high, but this isn’t unknown territory. The Columbus Blue Jackets had a franchise record 50-24-8 (108 points) and made the Stanley Cup Playoffs for only the third time franchise history last season. For all the firsts the 2016-17 season held, the Blue Jackets have been in this situation before, with thoughts of the previous season blasting the team toward a chain of success. But that has never happened. The team has never won a playoff series or even made back-to-back playoff appearances. The beginning of an 82-game regular-season journey to those goals begins Friday.The Blue Jackets open the 2017-18 NHL season Friday night at Nationwide Arena against the New York Islanders with hopes of a breakthrough and expectations to compete with the league’s elite teams, such as division rivals Washington and back-to-back Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh.Before the puck drops at 7 p.m. Friday, here’s what to look for ahead of the 2017-18 season.Storylines:Artemi Panarin: How does a front office address goal-scoring concerns on its offense? By trading for one of the top power-play forwards.The Blue Jackets acquired Blackhawks winger Artemi Panarin in a four-player deal, which included Brandon Saad and two draft picks. Panarin played on Chicago’s second line the last two seasons with superstar Patrick Kane and has been credited with a couple of Kane’s best career years, while accumulating 60 goals, 91 assists, 151 points in two seasons himself.He will likely join center Alexander Wennberg and right wing Cam Atkinson on the first line adding elite passing ability, a right-handed shot from the left wing and one of the most feared one-timers in the NHL.Foligno at center: After a down year in 2015, Foligno returned to normalcy in 2016, proving his captain status to Tortorella, who doubted the 29-year-old in his first season in Columbus. Now in 2017, Foligno will be asked to put up a similar 26-25-51 line at the center position for the first time in his 10-year NHL career.Foligno unexpectedly made the Ottawa Senators roster in 2007 and was placed at left wing because of a loaded center position. Now the captain is moving back to his original spot due to an absence of ready talent at the moment.Rookie Pierre Luc-Dubois, who was expected to fill the No. 3 center spot following the departure of center William Karlsson to Vegas in this summer’s expansion draft, will play left wing in a move to alleviate some growing pains the 2016 No. 3 overall pick might have in his first NHL season. Can Jackets have top-10 defense: With Bobrovsky between the pipes, the Blue Jackets will nearly always have a chance to win the game. He was 41-17-5 with a .931 save percentage and 2.06 goals allowed average last season, but it’s difficult to expect those numbers again from the league’s only active two-time Vezina winner without the continued emergence of a young defense.Zach Werenski, 20, and Seth Jones, 23, are two of the best young defensemen in the league and anchor the Jackets’ top defensive pair. Jack Johnson and David Savard will likely man the second pair again, but Gabriel Carlsson is probable to start on the third pair with Ryan Murray with Scott Harrington as the seventh man. Markus Nutivaara, who played in 66 games during his rookie season in 2016-17, will begin the season in Cleveland with the team’s American Hockey League affiliate following offseason hip surgery.Carlsson, 20, played in just two regular-season games last season before being thrown into the playoff series against Pittsburgh. Still qualified as a rookie, the 6-foot-5 Carlsson will become a fixture in Tortorella’s lineup if he can be a factor in the Jackets’ own zone.Josh Anderson, Boone Jenner injury: After missing all of training camp with a lengthy contract dispute as a restricted free agent, right winger Josh Anderson inked a three-year deal Tuesday, but will begin the season with Cleveland. He recorded 17-12-29 in last year’s rookie campaign.Left winger Boone Jenner will miss the season opener and likely longer than that as he is dealing with a back injury. Sonny Milano will likely start in place of Jenner Friday as Milano, a 2014 first-round pick, tries to play a full season in Columbus for the first time in his career.Schedule Outlook:The Blue Jackets being with a division opponent in the Islanders, then head on the road to face Chicago Saturday. Columbus’ first month has the potential for a fast start with seven of 12 games at home and only five of those 12 games are against playoff teams from last year.Forwards: Cam Atkinson, Oliver Bjorkstrand, Matt Calvert, Zac Dalpe, Brandon Dubinsky, Pierre-Luc Dubois, Nick Foligno, Markus Hannikainen, Boone Jenner*, Sonny Milano, Artemi Panarin, Lukas Sedlak, Alexander WennbergDefensemen: Gabriel Carlsson, Scott Harrington, Jack Johnson, Seth Jones, Ryan Murray, David Savard, Zach WerenskiGoaltenders: Sergei Bobrovsky, Joonas KorpisaloThe Lantern will post an article at the beginning of each week summing up all the Blue Jackets action and storylines that took place on the ice during the week. It will analyze the significance of the week’s action, a look ahead to the upcoming week and often include quotes from coaches and players. read more

Womens Volleyball Ohio State loses to Illinois beats Northwestern in 30 sweep

Members of Ohio State women’s volleyball team celebrate their final match point and victory against Maryland on Sept. 20. The Buckeyes won the match 3-0. Credit: Rebecca Farage | For The LanternThe Ohio State women’s volleyball team lost Friday night to Illinois (15-4, 6-2 Big Ten) in a 3-0 sweep, but bounced back Saturday by beating Northwestern (12-8, 2-6 Big Ten) in three straight sets.The Buckeyes moved to 11-8 overall and 4-4 in the Big Ten.IllinoisAlthough the Buckeyes had a slow start to the weekend, senior outside hitter Ashley Wenz helped her team with 15 kills, 13 digs and two blocks on the night. Senior outside hitter Luisa Schirmer contributed 10 kills and freshman defensive specialist Hannah Gruensfelder was responsible for 15 digs.Freshman middle blocker Lauren Witte was the surprise of the evening. She delivered seven kills on 11 swings with a .455 hitting percentage, with only two errors. She also played a strong defense with three blocks.Ohio State began the opening set with a 12-10 lead against the Illini. After an 18-all tie, the Buckeyes took four straight to move into a 22-18 lead before Illinois recorded seven of the next eight points to take the set, 25-23.The dramatic conclusion to the first set carried over to the next as Ohio State trailed the entire way through and lost 25-19.Although they fell behind early on in the third, Schirmer notched two kills and an ace to tie the set at 18. Unfortunately for Ohio State, Illinois converted seven of the final nine points to complete the sweep, 25-20..NorthwesternOhio State was able to come back on Saturday night against Northwestern with a 3-0 win, outscoring the Wildcats by 29 points and restricting them to a .074 attacking percentage.The Buckeyes played a convincing match with nine blocks and a .308 hitting percentage. Once again, Wenz drove the team to victory with 11 kills and three blocks of her own. Junior setter Taylor Hughes led the team with five blocks, three aces, and recorded 29 assists.Ohio State began the game on a high note with a 12-4 lead in the first set. Northwestern bounced back with a 9-3 run, but the Buckeyes scored 10 consecutive points and won the set 25-13.The second was a bit of a toss-up between both teams, but the Buckeyes pulled away late with a 5-1 run, securing the 25-18 win with an ace from SchirmerOhio State maintained its steady pace in the third set and and got some help at the net from Hughes and Witte, who tallied back-to-back blocks. The Buckeyes built a 22-10 lead, but the Wildcats fought back with four straight points. The Buckeyes continued to deliver both offensively and defensively, taking the set 25-15.Ohio State will return to St. John Arena for a match against No. 6 Minnesota at 8 p.m. Wednesday. read more

Football Ohio State right guard Demetrius Knox makes first career start against

Ohio State redshirt junior offensive lineman Demetrius Knox walks into the Hyatt Place to check in for fall camp on Aug. 6. Credit: Colin Hass-Hill | Sports Editor.LINCOLN, Nebraska — Ohio State redshirt junior Demetrius Knox made his first career start at right guard in the Buckeyes’ game Saturday against Nebraska.The fourth-year junior was listed as the co-starter at right guard with redshirt sophomore Matt Burrell on this week’s depth chart after redshirt sophomore Branden Bowen broke his leg in the team’s Week 6 game against Maryland. After Bowen’s injury, Burrell entered the game at right guard.Head coach Urban Meyer refused to state throughout the week who was ahead in the battle for Bowen’s replacement, only revealing that the battle would be between Knox, Burrell and redshirt junior Malcolm Pridgeon. read more

Mens Basketball Healthy Keita BatesDiop shines in Ohio State seasonopener

Ohio State redshirt junior forward Keita Bates-Diop (33) goes up for a contested layup in the second half of the Ohio State-Robert Morris game on Nov. 10. Ohio State won 95-64. Credit: Jack Westerheide | Photo EditorOhio State fans collectively held their breath when redshirt junior forward Keita Bates-Diop hit the floor fighting for a loose ball with eight minutes remaining in the first half. The 6-foot-7 wing got up and brushed himself off, allowing the home crowd to exhale as he walked off the floor uninjured.Just as he entered last season with lofty expectations, Bates-Diop is counted on to be a key cog in Ohio State’s team this season. The forward missed the majority of last season due to an injury, and a loss of the star forward could prove detrimental to the Buckeyes’ success.Bates-Diop excelled in his return to Ohio State’s starting lineup with 19 points and 11 rebounds — both team-highs — in the Buckeyes’ 95-64 season-opening victory against Robert Morris at the Schottenstein Center Friday night.Bates-Diop previewed his season in the Buckeyes’ exhibition game against Wooster last Sunday, producing 17 points and nine rebounds. He completed his return with an impactful performance Friday, officially making his full return from the injury last season.“I’m healthy; I’m feeling great,” Bates-Diop said. “Obviously, it was a good game from everybody, but that type of energy and production is what we’re hoping for.”After playing only 9.9 minutes per game as a freshman, Bates-Diop emerged as a key contributor during the 2015-2016 season, leading the team in total rebounds (210) and finishing second in points per game (11.8). With all signs pointing to a breakout junior campaign, the stress fracture came at a bad time for the Buckeyes’ budding star.He returned to the team midseason, but the injury clearly limited his productivity. Bates-Diop played his final game of the season on Jan. 1, and took a medical redshirt for the season.In his return, Bates-Diop made his presence felt immediately, using an array of moves to get to the basket throughout the night. Just five minutes into the game, the Buckeye forward maneuvered past a Colonial defender with an impressive spin move, leading to a layup for his second basket of the night.Bates-Diop provided efficient scoring, activity on defense and relentless effort on the boards in the Buckeyes’ season opener. He converted 9-of-12 shot attempts and hit 1-of-2 attempts from 3-point range in his return.The versatile forward used his 7-foot-2 wingspan to block two Colonial shot attempts and grab a team-leading 11 rebounds, including a career-high seven offensive rebounds in only 23 minutes of play.“I was pleased with his activity tonight — his ability to kind of make the right play,” Ohio State head coach Chris Holtmann said. “Overall, his ability to impact things on both ends and his ability to get to the glass tonight was really important for us.”Robert Morris head coach Andrew Toole took notice of how Bates-Diop’s size and versatility presented a hard matchup for the Colonials.“He’s much bigger and longer than he looks on film for sure. He’s just so smooth and really effortless with a lot of his decisions,” Toole said. “And obviously, a really talented and skilled player and someone that Ohio State’s going to be able to build around, and I think be able to have that kind of production night in and night out.”Bates-Diop aggressively attacked Robert Morris from the opening tip and tallied 13 points by halftime on 6-of-8 shooting while recording five rebounds. Halftime intermission did not slow down the forward. Bates-Diop added six points and brought down six more rebounds in the first seven minutes of the second half before checking out at 12:59 for the final time with Ohio State leading comfortably 66-41.Holtmann had continually emphasized the importance of consistent production from his veteran players, particularly Bates-Diop and senior forward Jae’Sean Tate. And now being fully healthy for the first time in two years, Bates-Diop might be the Buckeyes’ go-to guy this season.“I’ve said that Keita, as well as Jae’Sean, we’re gonna kind of go as they go. And I really believe that,” Holtmann said. “Our season in a lot of ways will be impacted by one or both of those guys. (They) are going to need to play well for us to play well — to have a chance, because they’re terrific kids and they’re really good players.” read more

Mens basketball Ohio State can now focus on opportunity for momentous statement

Ohio State senior forward Jae’Sean Tate (1) speaks with head coach Chris Holtmann in the first half in the game against Michigan on Dec. 4. Ohio State won 71-62. Credit: Jack Westerheide | Photo EditorChris Holtmann was honest after Ohio State’s win against The Citadel Tuesday night. It didn’t mean much of anything.Especially not with the reigning national champion No. 5 North Carolina Tar Heels next on the schedule.“I thought this was an opportunity … for us to see guys play a little bit,” Holtmann said after Tuesday’s game. “I don’t know outside of that how much we can take from a game like this, to be honest, outside of the fact that we handled the ball a little bit better.”The Buckeyes are 10-3, ranked No. 46 in KenPom as of Tuesday night and actually might have a shot of pulling off an upset that few thought was possible at the beginning of the year, when disarray and uncertainty flooded the halls of the Schottenstein Center.But to the surprise of many, Ohio State has played solid basketball this season.Sure, there have been spurts of inconsistency, but in the big picture, Holtmann has maneuvered through the majority of the nonconference schedule with no bad losses on its NCAA Tournament resume and won two could-be pivotal conference games — at Wisconsin and home against Michigan.If there’s one area that Holtmann has yet to impress the college basketball landscape in, its his team’s record against teams currently inside the KenPom top 50. It sits at 1-2, including a 27-point loss to No. 12 Gonzaga at the PK80 in Portland.The one chance Ohio State has had to step into the ring with the heavyweights, it faltered mightily.It has a chance at redemption Saturday at 1:30 p.m. in New Orleans.The Buckeyes were just four games into the season when it squared off with Gonzaga. No one knew much about what type of team the Buckeyes were, including Holtmann and his first-year staff.“We got off to a 4-0 start and got really humbled out in Portland our first game, by just a team that’s flat-out better,” Holtmann said Tuesday.That game meant Ohio State couldn’t hang with the blue-bloods. At least for the moment it couldn’t. Since then, Holtmann has seen his team grow into one that can make stops when it has to, come back from 20-point deficits, but also blow double-digit leads.After losing to Gonzaga in the PK80 Invitational, Ohio State won 79-71 against Stanford. However, two days later, it blew a 15-point lead late and lost in overtime 67-66 to Butler, KenPom’s No. 53 team.The last loss the Buckeyes had was a 14-point loss to Clemson on Nov. 29, which doesn’t look as bad now, given Clemson’s 10-1 record with a win at Florida — a team that beat Gonzaga at the PK80.Ohio State responded from that game by handing the Wisconsin Badgers their largest loss in the history of the Kohl Center, and beat a Michigan team that has since beaten UCLA and Texas.Game No. 5 was a complete mismatch versus a team Ohio State wasn’t ready for. Game No. 14 is another blue-blood that Holtmann hopes his team is ready for by now.Notebook:Backups get extended lookOhio State rolled with a young lineup Tuesday night for a solid majority of the game. Andrew Dakich, Kam Williams, Musa Jallow or Andre Wesson, Kyle Young and Micah Potter were on the court for several minutes together, which Holtmann said happened because of the flow of the game.“We won’t typically sub like that the rest of the year,” he said. “The reality is when you get into league play consistently … it’s going to be about 8-, 9-, in some cases 10-guy rotation. So seeing some of those guys in extended minutes was good.”Adding to that, seeing Young and Potter, specifically, play extended minutes was encouraging, for the two are coming off ankle injuries. Young played 13 minutes in his return Saturday against Appalachian State and Potter played just one minute. Tuesday, Potter played 19 minutes and Young played 12.Moving forward, depth is going to be a key factor in Ohio State’s ability to keep top scorers Keita Bates-Diop and Jae’Sean Tate fresh in moments late in the second half when they’re needed most.“[Potter’s] got to earn his minutes back. So does Kyle,” Holtmann said. “The way you do that is you impact winning.”JaQuan Lyle talks about why he left Ohio StateFormer Ohio State point guard JaQuan Lyle quit the team back in April, and later transferred to New Mexico where he has to sit out a season, per NCAA transfer rules. Adam Jardy of the Columbus Dispatch interviewed Lyle at halftime, who said he left Ohio State because he didn’t have trust in the prior coaching staff.From The Dispatch:“I just felt like it was best that I went somewhere else. I didn’t feel like I could be successful both on and off the court here, so it was best for me to start over somewhere fresh and somewhere new.”Bates-Diop continues stellar playIt was an efficient night for the redshirt junior. He was 7-of-11 from the field and 3-of-6 from beyond the arc for 17 points in 18 minutes. Here’s what The Citadel coach Duggar Baucom said about Bates-Diop:“Bates-Diop, I think he’s going to play at the next level.” read more

Advocacy Groups call for federal investigation into Ohio State

Richard Strauss in his Ohio State College of Medicine photograph. Advocacy groups are now calling for a federal investigation of Ohio State for how it handled alleged sexual abuse by Strauss.. Credit: Courtesy of Ohio StateAdvocacy groups on Wednesday called for a federal investigation into Ohio State’s handling of alleged sexual abuse by former university doctor Richard Strauss.The call for an investigation came in a letter from the National Women’s Law Center and 36 other organizations, such as the NAACP and National Alliance to End Sexual Violence, addressed to Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos and Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Kenneth Marcus.“We write to urge the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights (OCR) to initiate an investigation of Ohio State University’s failure to respond to a widely known pattern of alleged sexual abuse, spanning approximately two decades, by Richard Strauss, an athletic team doctor, and to conduct a systemic-wide investigation into the University’s response to sexual abuse,” the letter said.The letter also pointed out a university’s responsibilities to its students under Title IX.“Many student survivors are not aware of their rights under Title IX and how to seek help; many employees would rather look the other way than to acknowledge and deal with the abuse; and many institutions fail to take the steps necessary to ensure student safety,” the letter said.Ben Johnson, Ohio State University spokesman, issued the following statement in response to the letter.“It is critical to note that the concerns expressed by these groups in this letter relate to allegations of abuse during a period of time from 1978 to 1998, and the university of today shares the concern that individuals at the time knew and may not have responded appropriately, which is why this is a critical focus of the ongoing independent investigation,” the statement said. “We are committed to finding the truth of what happened during that time at Ohio State.” read more

Gallery Mens and womens soccer doubleheader

The Ohio State women’s soccer team huddles up before the second half of the game against against Florida Gulf Coast University begins on Sept. 7, 2018. Credit: Casey Cascaldo | Photo EditorOn Sept. 7, the Ohio State women’s soccer team and men’s soccer team hosted a doubleheader at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium in Columbus. The women’s soccer team fell to Florida Gulf Coast 1-0. The men’s soccer team fell to South Florida 1-0. Photos by Casey Cascaldo.

Sixty female and all living under one roof just dont call it

first_imgShe has started packing boxes. There are marks on the walls where she’s taken down  pictures, and she’s emptied her freezer. OWCH flats have been allocated on the basis of seniority, with the longest-standing members choosing first.‘We could chose the colour of the walls, flooring, kitchen units, tiles in the bathroom and kitchen – that sort of thing,’ Meredeen says. She has chosen not to have a washing machine as there is a communal laundry.  ‘And I’m having a walk-in bath [as opposed to a shower] – I’m paying a little extra for that.’ June 9 2016  When I next see Meredeen it is June, and we are standing in what was recently a building site, watching a theory come to life. A group of members are being shown around the nearly finished OWCH development, and the mood is one of elation, with riffs about balconies (‘bigger than I thought’), the garden and common room (‘beautiful!’), solar panels and the ‘minimal and Scandi’ white walls.The development cost about £7 million. ‘It’s not an old people’s home,’ says Denis O’Donovan, the site manager, from the building firm Quinn London. ‘It’s independent living for elderly people.’ He points out how every switch and socket is accessible to someone in a wheelchair. Maria Brenton on site It will be quite  different for us [residents of the OWCH community]. We will support each other.’It’s taken such a long time, I say. So many disappointments. So many reverses. How did you keep going?‘I made a promise to Madeleine,’ she replies. ‘I actually stood by her grave and said, “Madeleine, it’s going to happen.” That was a promise I couldn’t break.’  In 1998, Shirley Meredeen was in her late 60s and had recently retired from her job as a student counsellor. But she had no plans for a quiet life.This, after all, was a woman who got a degree from the Open University at the age of 56; who had worked full-time and raised two sons after her divorce; and who, together with Madeleine Levius, had founded Growing Old Disgracefully – a network that challenges preconceptions of older women as passive and past it.Meredeen was keen to change the world, or at least the way the world saw older women. In the summer of that year, she attended  a workshop on co-housing at the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) in north London. Co-housing is a fundamentally different way of life in which people live close to, but not with, each other. The trouble is people die off. My address book gets smaller all the timeShirley Meredeen Angela Ratcliffe, 83, a former actress, civil servant and social worker, retired about 12 years ago. A widow, she has two children, two stepchildren and 10 grandchildren. ‘I was having a telephone conversation with my elder daughter and at the end of it, she suddenly said, “Mum, have you thought about the future?”I said, “No,” and when I put down the phone I thought, “No, but you have and it’s probably worrying you.”’ Ratcliffe joined OWCH four years ago and says she is most looking forward to spontaneity. ‘If you’re feeling sociable you go to the common room, make a cup of coffee and see if anyone else turns up.Or you might ring someone and say, “I’m taking the dog for a walk, do you want to come?”’  The group includes a doctor, a nurse, an actress, an administrator, a cranial osteopath, a teacher and a set designer. Some are divorced or widowed; others are single. Most are retired, some still working. There are two dogs and several cats. OWCH membership is a prerequisite for residents; it costs £60 a year and individuals are approved by existing members.They are also expected to contribute time, cleaning communal areas, for example  – to what extent is up to each person. ‘It’s a way of retaining your independence and your dignity and being among people who can be supportive of you at the same time,’ says Meredeen, now 86. The only founding member of OWCH still involved with the group (Levius died in 2005), she has been the driving force behind it for almost two decades. In the Netherlands (population almost 17 million), there are now 230 senior co-housing communities. ‘The movement has been encouraged by successive governments because it’s a form of living that keeps older people happier and healthier, and therefore they make fewer demands on health- and social-care services.’Brenton says the statistics about loneliness in Britain are stark, and yet we are doing ‘sod all’ about it. According to the Campaign To End Loneliness, more than half of all people over 75 in the UK live alone, and two fifths of older people say the television is their main company. I don’t want to age in the same way as she is ageingAnna Watkins Shirley Meredeen at homeCredit:Lydia Goldblatt  ‘We’re not a bunch of hippies,’ one member tells me. Nor are they man-haters. It’s women-only because women are often the ones left behind. Everyone owns or rents their flat (the largest have three bedrooms and cost about £400,000), but no one need feel isolated.There is a common room, a community kitchen, guest rooms for visitors, and a garden – all designed to encourage a socially fluid lifestyle: sharing maintenance and gardening tasks, cooking and eating a weekly meal together. There will be an on-site film club, but the idea is to use local facilities, too. A revolutionSo either they rejected us, or we rejected them.’Making this project happen was a long, slow process. Potential sites were found and lost. Housing associations came and went. Women joined and left.‘Many couldn’t wait,’ Brenton says. She became the group’s champion, but never planned to be part of the community. ‘One of the reasons I didn’t join them was so I could keep them going. If my personal fortunes went up and down as theirs did we would have got nowhere,’ she explains. Shirley Meredeen at home A condition of Brenton’s grant was that she had to report her findings to women’s groups. She organised the workshop Meredeen attended at the NCVO, where she gave a presentation and showed a film about co-housing by a Dutch filmmaker. Brenton remembers attendees sharing their excitement.‘Six of them went off like excited starlings to the pub afterwards…’ Buoyed by the workshop, Meredeen and Levius announced a gathering of prospective co-housing participants at Meredeen’s flat a month later. Eight people came. They had another meeting the following month. OWCH was born.‘We thought we’d have it within five years. We had no idea what we were letting ourselves in for,’ Meredeen says. She explains that the main complication was the group’s desire to include rented flats (17 are owned, eight rented), which meant identifying funding and getting housing-association and local-authority support.  It’s the first time in my life that I’ve actually done something revolutionary and it feels incredibly excitingAnna Watkins A birds-eye view of the apartments  A birds-eye view of the apartments Credit:Pollard Thomas Edwards But finally, with financial support from Housing for Women (H4W), the Tudor Trust and Hanover Housing Association, the group is set to make history. ‘It’s the first time in my life that I’ve actually done something revolutionary and it feels incredibly exciting,’ says Anna Watkins, 63, a costume designer.She joined OWCH in 2010. ‘I was looking after my aged mother, who was living alone in a little terraced house in London. She was happy, but as her health declined she became less mobile and I started thinking, “I don’t want to age in the same way as she is ageing.”I asked her one day, “What do the neighbours do to help you?” And she said, “Oh darling, they are wonderful.” By that she meant a nice man who lived opposite waved at her while she was sitting in her chair. And I realised a wave wouldn’t be enough for me. I would want a cup of tea, a conversation.’ The workshop was life-changing. ‘Madeleine and I went to the pub afterwards and decided to create something similar,’ Meredeen says.Next month, 26 women aged from 50 to 86 will move into a unique community that they’ve had built in High Barnet, north London.‘We’re not a bunch of hippies’It has taken 18 years and many ups and downs, but they have finally realised their dream. Older Women’s Co-Housing (OWCH) is a groundbreaking project designed specifically for – and by – women, and they will manage it themselves. It is not a commune, in which the group owns everything and it’s share and share alike. An artist’s impression of what the homes will look likeCredit:Pollard Thomas Edwards Co-housing is a fundamentally different way of life in which people live close to, but not with, each other She broke her tibia. Then, when she was discharged from hospital five weeks later, she fell off her crutches and broke her hand. To her intense frustration, she had to be admitted for six weeks.  But her mood was upbeat. ‘If the OWCH building was finished, I wouldn’t need to be here,’ she said. Maria Brenton on siteCredit:Lydia Goldblatt  An artist's impression of what the homes will look like In the Netherlands (population almost 17 million), there are now 230 senior co-housing communities ‘We’d go to local authorities to introduce the idea and these lovely young housing staff would say, “Great idea, but our housing priorities are younger people.” Or they’d say, “There’s a site at the end of the railway line” – out of sight, out of mind – but we wanted to be part of the community where we had doctors, libraries, shops, transport. There is even a decluttering group. Meetings can be long and extremely detailed, and today’s topics include the purchase of furniture for the common room. It’s clear everyone is anxious to start living with one another, and the ever-receding date for completion is starting to wear them down.Originally set for the end of March, it is now May (and will end up being September). ‘Should you rent, sofa-surf or stay with a relative?’ says one  member who has recently sold her house. ‘It’s very stressful.’ April 7 2016 ‘When people are less lonely they are nearly always healthier than when they feel abandoned and alone,’ Meredeen reads from a newspaper article she’s cut out entitled, ‘We hear a lot about compassion for the elderly. Isn’t it time we showed some?’ ‘That is absolutely relevant to OWCH,’ she says.We’re sitting in her light-filled flat in a handsome Victorian block overlooking Highbury Fields, north London.  This is our second meeting. Our first, some months earlier, was in the institutional setting of a respite-care centre nearby. Meredeen had been watering plants on a stepladder in her flat when it collapsed. There are also smaller ‘task groups’ for matters such as gardening and communications. (I will later sit in on a meeting of the Relocation Task Group in the foyer of the Lyttelton Theatre at the National Theatre, where 11 members drink coffee and discuss the logistics of moving 26 women over three weeks.) Keeping older people happierResearch suggests that the health impact of loneliness and social isolation is ‘equivalent to smoking 15 cigarettes a day’. ‘OWCH women look out for each other, not after each other,’ Brenton says. ‘At some point, people may need full-time residential care,  but it will be much later than if they’d been living alone.’  Watkins googled ‘communities’ and found OWCH. ‘I liked their ethos of helping older people, and their togetherness. It’s almost like everyone in the community is signed up to be a good neighbour. They will all wave at me, but some will also come over and say, “How are  you doing?”’ ‘Very much a women’s problem’ In 1990, Maria Brenton, now 70, then an academic in social policy at the University of Wales, was researching old age.‘I saw that it was very much a women’s problem,’ she explains. ‘Women live longer than men, and many have fewer resources because they’ve been cut out of the workforce bringing up children.’Brenton, convinced of women’s resourcefulness, went in search of instances in which they might be ‘helping each other out’. In 1997, with a grant from The Joseph Rowntree Foundation, she travelled throughout America, Canada, Denmark and the Netherlands. ‘To cut a long story short, what  I found was the co-housing model in Holland,’ she says.The idea had actually originated in Denmark, where, in the 1960s, architects and families who had become dissatisfied with single-family housing began experimenting with something more collaborative. Deirdre Flanagan, 59, is a careers advisor and has lived in a housing-association flat in Westminster, central London, for 20 years. Initially thrilled to live in the heart of the capital, she now finds it ‘abrasive’.She discovered OWCH through Diggers and Dreamers, an organisation that offers information about alternative living, from co-ops to co-housing. She attended her first OWCH meeting in  July 2013, and her admiration for the women was instant. ‘They’re a solid group who care and live by what they believe is truthful  and good.’  It’s women-only because women are often the ones left behind February 14 2016 OWCH members are gathered in the common room of Argenta House, a sheltered-housing complex in Belsize Park, north London. OWCH has held meetings here on the second Sunday of every month for 17 years. The schedule  consists of business matters, a ‘pot luck’ lunch supplied by members, and workshops.Today, plates of home-made quiche, smoked salmon, chocolate cake, lychees, sliced pineapple and  a Terry’s Chocolate Orange are laid out on a table. There are about 20 members taking their place in a circle of chairs, but there are also friends, associates and visitors. There is no OWCH office, and no paid employees.They are all volunteers. OWCH follows a consensus process for discussions and decision-making, and has fine-tuned policies for everything from resolving arguments to pets, car shares and the resale of flats (offered to the community first, and then, if there are no takers, to non-resident members of OWCH – currently  a pool of three women, though there are plans to increase the number to 12; flats will never be sold on the open market). ‘There would be people who could do my shopping and come and say hello.  ‘Have you seen my rota?’ she continued,  pulling a sheet of paper out of a plastic wallet. ‘I have two people from OWCH visiting every day. They’ve delivered newspapers, apples, bananas, Camembert cheese.You see, OWCH has proved itself before we’ve even moved in.’ Meredeen is a ‘news addict’, interested in politics, with a wide group of friends and  membership of Tate and the Royal Academy. ‘The trouble is people die off,’ she says. ‘My address book gets smaller all the time.’ Friends also become less mobile.‘It’s the weekends that can be difficult. If I’ve not spoken to anyone for two days, I’ll feel low. Then I’ll ring a friend.’ Meredeen goes on, ‘If you’re in a flat on  your own and are lucky enough to have social care, someone may come for 15 minutes. But then they’re off to the next one. The design recently won the Richard Feilden Award at the Housing Design Awards. Diana Deeks-Plummer, an artist and photographer, who has been living in a council flat in Lewisham, had until this moment not allowed herself to believe in the completion of the development.‘I’m still scared to believe it,’ she says. She imagines plants on the balcony and visits from her six-year-old grandson. Vivien Sheehan, a former PA who loves entertaining, is relieved her big farmhouse table will fit in her open-plan kitchen/sitting room.‘I’m not buying a flat, I’m buying a whole life change,’ says Sue Tubb, a retired head teacher.  Meredeen leans on a walking stick, surveying the sweep of the three-storey complex: the result of 18 years of sheer doggedness.‘It’s wonderful,’ she says. ‘Most women my age would not be looking forward to old age – I’m looking forward to a great adventure.’ She exhales deeply. ‘This has kept me alive.’For more information, visit owch.org.uk Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

Film industry couple cleared of assaulting each other in row outside their luxury

first_imgA film industry couple inflicted injuries on each other during a late-night drunken birthday party brawl outside their luxury £2.6 million home, a court heard.The evening turned sour when film financier Gregory Browne, 49, and movie executive Catherine Quantschnigg, 42, began rowing violently in front of thirty guests.One invitee was pushed down the stairs of the six-bedroom Edwardian house by Browne, receiving a cut to his ear, when the host found him wandering around the first floor.Police arrested the couple, who have a four year-old daughter, in the early hours of October 11, last year at Barnes, south-west London, with each accusing the other of assault. The couple's house in Barnes “My friend Ramin was bleeding from the ear, he broke a finger and went to hospital. There was blood everywhere.”Ramin said: ‘Your boyfriend is insane. I don’t know what’s wrong with him.’ He was very aggressive and very drunk and I believe also on drugs, it was very scary.”Mr Browne does not deny his push caused the guest’s fall, but insists he was not bleeding heavily and that Miss Quantschnigg exaggerated the injuries. She told the court Mr Browne violently blocked her from returning inside.”He held my wrists, grabbed me and threw me out. He pushed me and kicked me and I fell down the steps at the front of the house. My arm was black and blue and my knee was bruised.”Mr Browne, who helped finance Robert de Niro and John Travolta’s ‘Killing Season’ told the court Miss Quantschnigg bit a chunk out of his left hand, bit his arm and kicked him in the back with her stiletto heel, causing a fracture to one of his vertebrae.He told the court she had been knocking back strong cocktails and was speaking intimately with ‘Ramin’ and a hedge fund manager for most of the evening.Mr Browne, who had bought £2,000 worth of alcohol for the event, approached the men and told them: “Enjoy my house, enjoy my party and it looks like my girlfriend as well.”This sent her into a “violent rage” said Mr Browne and she followed him outside.He said: “I heard Catherine screaming abuse and she launched into me with punches and kicks.”I pushed her away with my foot and turned and then felt a thud to my back. When I grabbed hold of her she bit a chunk out of my arm.”Mr Browne went upstairs and found ‘Ramin’ emerge from his daughter’s empty bedroom.He told the court: “I said: ‘What the f*** are you doing?’ and he started mouthing off. I said: ‘Get the f*** out’ and pushed him and he slipped and went down the stairs.”He then tried to block Miss Quantschnigg entering the house.”I grabbed her and pushed her. She was standing on the steps in high heels and fell backwards. “She’s not a small girl. She packs a punch and takes a big bite.”Guest Maxine Henshilwood, 48, backed-up Browne’s account of being attacked by Miss Quantschnigg.”Kung Fu Panda comes past, arms flailing. She’s kicking and punching him. Then she went to hit me and attacked him again,” she told the court.Mr Browne called 999 to complain he had been assaulted and when police arrived he flagged down their car, saying: “I’m the victim here. Don’t judge me yet.”Tony Wyatt, defending, told the court: “This is a woman that will do anything and say anything to get herself out of trouble and see Mr Browne convicted.”The magistrates found Mr Browne not guilty and chairman Gordon Lawson announced: “We did not find Miss Quantschnigg to be a credible and reliable witness.” Miss Quantschnigg was earlier cleared of assault when Mr Browne did not appear for her trial and on Thursday he was found not guilty at Wimbledon Magistrates’ Court of assaulting her.The incident finally brought an end to their turbulent five-year on-off relationship, which they had tried to save when moving into the £6,000 a month property a month before.”It was my birthday and house-warming party for around thirty guests and my parents flew over from Austria,” said Miss Quantschnigg, who is head of sales for Cornerstone films – makers of recent Amy Winehouse bio ‘Amy’.She is the former vice-president of international sales for Goldcrest Films and the ex-president of Hollywood film distributor IM Global.”I was outside saying goodbye to some guests when I heard a really loud noise from inside. The sound of someone being thrown down the stairs and screaming,” she said.center_img The couple’s house in BarnesCredit:Tony Palmer/Square Mile News Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

George Michaels former partner flushed his drugs down toilet

first_imgHe said: “Of course I wish we’d never split up. But things would have had to change or we would both be dead.”I wish we’d both been able to clean up.”I started to have a drink problem at about 50. I couldn’t sleep, I drank to sleep, that’s when it all started. It fell apart.””George would text saying he wished we were together still — like in the beginning.”Our psychiatrist encouraged us to stay together even though it was a dysfunctional relationship.”I asked him if I should leave George and he looked me in the eye and said, ‘I think you are the only reason George stays alive’.”He added: “There was never a day I didn’t worry about him. Right until the end, I still loved him.” In 2008 he was cautioned for possession of class A drugs, which included crack cocaine, and class C drugs and in September 2010 he received an eight-week prison sentence and a five-year driving ban after he pleaded guilty to driving under the influence of drugs and possessing cannabis.Goss, 58, said Michael’s drug use and his own drinking led to arguments between the pair, telling the paper: “When I confronted him, he never denied it, never apologised. He was hard on me about drinking, because I developed a problem.”He added he believes if the pair had stayed together they could now both be dead. George Michael (L) smiles with his partner Kenny GossCredit:AFP/Getty Images In an interview to raise awareness about the pair’s charitable Goss-Michael Foundation, Goss told The Sun on Sunday: “I would find drugs and flush everything down the toilet, thinking, ‘If I just get rid of it he won’t get more’. He was absent-minded, so would just think he’d lost them.”He added: “I don’t think George necessarily thought he’d die young, but every time I looked into his eyes I thought, ‘My God I’m losing you, what is going on’.”Goss said when they first met, Michael only smoked a small amount of marijuana adding: “That was a gateway drug to the others. But it escalated. At one point he was smoking 25 joints a day. George Michael’s former partner Kenny Goss has claimed he used to flush the singer’s drugs down the toilet to try to end his addiction.Michael, who was found dead on Christmas Day at the age of 53, was killed by heart disease and a build-up of fat in his liver, which can be linked to drug and alcohol abuse.Goss, who was in a relationship with the Wham! star for 15 years, said he would get rid of the drugs he found around the house but watched the singer decline in front of him. George Michael (L) smiles with his partner Kenny Goss Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. The following May he pleaded guilty to driving while unfit through drugs and was banned from driving for two years. “I saw him smoke weed all the time but never hardcore drugs. I heavily disapproved so he wouldn’t be around me in that state.”He shielded me and his family. He had another group of friends he’d do that with.”Michael’s battle with substances was well documented and in October 2006 he was found slumped over the wheel of his car.last_img read more

Alex Salmond warns voters they have not seen the last of him

first_imgTo heckling from Tory activists, he said: “But overall results show the SNP will have won a majority of the seats in this country and a majority of the votes, something which I suspect the Prime Minister would like to be able to claim in the early hours of this morning but may not be able to do so.”While the SNP may have been reduced in numbers at Westminster, he said they will still have “very substantial influence indeed”. Mr Salmond said: “And I know that my colleagues will seek to use that influence to keep the Conservative Party from power and to build a progressive alliance to take this country forward and to avoid the calamity of hard Brexit.”Speaking later to BBC Scotland, he refused to be drawn on whether he thought Nicola Sturgeon should drop her demand for a second independence referendum.However he said he was teasing the Tories with his argument that they had not seen the last of him. In his victory speech, Mr Clark said: “The silent majority have spoken. We’re proud to be part of the United Kingdom.” alex salmond Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.center_img Alex Salmond’s defeat is a huge blow for SNPCredit:getty Alex Salmond has warned Scots they have not seen the last of him after losing his seat to the Tories in the most sensational upset of the General Election.The former First Minister quoted a Jacobite song in his concession speech, saying: “You’ve not seen the last of my bonnet and me.”Although he won a majority of 8,687 at the 2015 election in the Gordon seat, the Tory vote increased by 29 points to give Colin Clark victory by 2,607 votes.A defiant Mr Salmond insisted the SNP had still won the election in Scotland, having held a majority of seats, and refused to blame Nicola Sturgeon’s demand for a second independence referendum.Instead he argued that the surge in support for Jeremy Corbyn had led to Left-wing and pro-independence voters switching support from the SNP to Labour, allowing the Tories to come through the middle.The former SNP leader predicted that the Nationalists would now try to form a “progressive alliance” with Mr Corbyn to keep the Tories out of power.Mr Salmond, whose father died this week, said: “The Scottish National Party have lost many fine parliamentarians this evening and that is a grievous blow to the SNP.”last_img read more

Titanic soundtrack named as bestselling classical music album but composer did not

first_imgThe Titanic soundtrack has been named as the best-selling classical music album of the last 25 years, even though the composer did not think it was his best work.The Oscar-winning score, composed by James Horner, sold more than one million copies in the UK and has come number one on the Ultimate Classic FM Chart, the biggest countdown of classical music album sales.It beat Russell Watson’s albums The Voice and Encore, which came in second and third place respectively. Katherine Jenkins James Horner died in a plane crash two years ago Credit:Reed Saxon /AP  Watson is the most popular male artist, with 2.5 million albums sales in the chart and Andre Rieu is the biggest international classical artist, with 2.3 million album sales.Seven of the top 20 albums are by singers and composers from Wales, while six of the top 20 best-selling artists are Welsh.Jenkins is joined on the list by Charlotte Church, the Fron Male Voice Choir, Bryn Terfel, Aled Jones and Sir Karl Jenkins.Howard Shore, who wrote the score to the Lord of the Rings trilogy, is the best-selling living composer – while John Williams, who composed the music for Star Wars, Jurassic Park and Harry Potter is third.The Italian pianist and composer Ludovico Einaudi came second on the list.Music from the top 300 albums in the Ultimate Classic FM Chart were played on-air between August 26 and 28 and the full list is published at ClassicFM.com. The album was one of 26 film soundtracks on the list. “Touching the inner world of the audience was what most composers wish to do, and when he was successful at doing that, I think James felt like he had fulfilled his destiny.” Jenkins said: “I was 12 when Classic FM was launched and I feel like we have grown up together. I listened as a child, so it was a huge moment for me when they first played my song on the radio – and when they announced my first number one, I remember bursting into tears!”With so many friends and colleagues on the list, to be named the number one artist over Classic FM’s 25 years is something I will treasure always. I hope you can hear the cheering all the way from Neath!” James Horner James Horner won an Oscar for the scoreCredit:Dave Hogan /Gettycenter_img James Horner wrote the score for many filmsCredit:Jun Sato /WireImage Mezzo-Soprano Katherine Jenkins has been named the number one classical music artist of the past 25 years, selling more than 2.7 million albums on the Classic FM chart.Her record Second Nature was the most popular classical album released in 2004, while Living A Dream was the most popular of 2005.Both feature in the top 10, while another seven of her albums are on the list of the top 300 records released since September 7 1992 – which has been compiled by the Official Charts Company to mark the radio station’s 25th birthday next month. James Horner James Horner Katherine Jenkins was the best-selling classical singer Credit:Dave J Hogan /Getty Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. But Sarah Horner, the widow of the composer who was killed in a plane crash in 2015, told the radio station: “He [James] was a very individualistic thinker, so I don’t know if he would feel like that was his best work.”Certainly, the public loved it, but what I would say is – and I think this is true for all the composers I know – is that their relationship with the audience was where they felt most emotionally connected in the world and was probably where they could honestly feel loved.last_img read more