Daily News

A quick look at the day's news

Chip's got the hot life at Oregon

SPORTSLAND starts with some commentary on Chip Kelly
Jan. 7, 2013

So, what if the NFL isn't willing to pay for Chip Kelly the way he wants to be paid - with unique benefits.

Maybe, what the Cleveland Browns needed was a tour of Kelly's new office, which includes a hot tub.

There's a cable network series just waiting to be made based on Kelly and his office hot tub at the University of Oregon. "Executive Hot Tub," where producers find struggling businesses with potential space and then install a hot tub.

Imagine the smiles from those business owners.

Whatever Kelly saw in his tour of the beleagured NFL teams, he apparently didn't see a reason to leave Oregon and another upcoming run at the national championship. Oregon may very well open the season ranked No. 1 or 2, which the cast of Sportsland delved into in the first episode of 2013. There's the college football world, thoughts on the most likely road team to win in the NFL playoffs this weekend, and a review of the Blazers' run at making Damian Lillard the NBA Rookie of the Year as well as Terry Stotts the NBA Coach of the Year.

Oregon and Oregon State opened their Pac-12 Conference schedules on a unique night - Sunday, and the Ducks continue to put up a solid resume for being a challenger for the conference title.

And, the Winterhawks, they're in there, too.

It's all in 49 minutes of Podcasting from Blitz in the Pearl, located in Northwest Portland.




Oregon volleyball highlights big weekend

Ducks play for national title, Hawks play for Teddy Bears
Dec. 14, 2012

As much as the Oregon football team has captured the state's attention, it's women's teams that have brought home the hardware this fall with one national title and second waiting to be won Saturday.

Oregon will play for the NCAA Volleyball title Saturday against Texas, having won their way into the match with a solid 3-1 victory over top-seeded Penn State Thursday in Louisville, Ky.

The Ducks reached the title match for the first time behind Jesuit alum Liz Brenner, and Pac-12 Player of the Year Alaina Bergsma.

Oregon won the women's cross country title earlier in the fall.


The annual Teddy Bear Toss is Saturday at the Rose Garden, with the Winterhawks aiming for the league record set by Calgary.

Just six years ago, the team established a record with more than 11,000 Teddy Bears thrown onto the ice following the first goal of the game, but the team record is now 22,392, and the Western Hockey League record is 26,919. For the team to break that record with a sold-out crowd of more than 9,000, every fan would need three Teddy Bears. The Winterhawks are promoting purchase of teddy bears at Dollar Tree for ... $1.


The Trail Blazers can put together their first three-game winning streak of the season Sunday with a home game against New Orleans. Following a solid win over San Antonio on Thursday, the Blazers improved to 6-5 at home and can move within a game of .500 with a win over the Hornets, who enter the game with the worst record in the Western Conference - even below the Lakers - 5-16.

Portland is 10-12, and 11th in the West, but just a game behind eighth-place Dallas.


The Jesuit boys basketball team - four-time defending state champions at Class 6A, continue their non-league schedule with a road game at Lincoln Friday. The Crusaders, who lost only to Oak Hill Academy and Central Catholic on the way to the state title, play in the Les Schwab Invitational that begins Dec. 26.



Oregon, OSU, 6A keep Fall alive

Oregon volleyball keeps pace with UO/OSU football; Sheldon meets LO again
Dec. 3, 2012 / By Cliff Pfenning, Oregonsports Journal

Oregon and Oregon State got their official invitations to college football bowl games Sunday, and they went about as expected.

But, the Fall athletic season is still alive and well outside Autzen and Reser Stadiums in the form of the Oregon volleyball team, which is headed to the second round of the NCAA tournament as a favorite to reach the Final Four.

Oregon beat Northern Colorado 3-0 Friday and Dayton 3-0 Saturday and heads to the Sweet 16 for the third time under eighth-year coach Jim Moore. The Ducks will play BYU Friday in Omaha, Neb., with the winner moving to face either Washington or Nebraska for a spot in the Final Four.

The weekend's matches were played at Matthew Knight Arena in Eugene, boosting the Oregon program as it played host to NCAA Tournament action for the first time. The Ducks, who finished second in the Pac-12 this season - their highest finish ever, have never reached the Final Four.

"Getting to host an NCAA event in Eugene really meant a lot to our program," said sophomore hitter Liz Brenner. "The excitement in the air is something I, or our fans, will ever forget."

Oregon features Pac-12 Player of the Year Alaina Bergsma and leads the nation in kills.



Oregon and Kansas State will finally meet this season - in the Fiesta Bowl Jan. 6 - while Oregon State gets a chance to uphold the state's honor against Texas in the Alamo Bowl the schools announced Sunday.

Oregon, which finished at 11-1 and No. 4 in the BCS Rankings, will be making its fourth-straight appearance in a BCS game following an appearance in the Rose Bowl in 2010 and '12 and the national title game in 2011. Oregon and KSU were scheduled to meet last year before the Wildcats withdrew from the game contract. Kansas State is also 11-1 and ranked No. 5.

Oregon State will be returning to a bowl game for the first time in four seasons when it visited the Las Vegas Bowl. The Beavers, who beat Nicholls State 77-3 Saturday, will face Texas in the Valero Alamo Bowl, Dec. 29, in San Antonio, Texas.

OSU enters the game at 9-3 and ranked No. 13, while Texas is 8-4 and No. 23.



Sheldon and Lake Oswego are back in the final - a rematch of last season when the Lakers won their first championship. This season, the teams have been largely unstoppable, with the Irish rolling through their 13 opponents, including Jesuit 35-28 Saturday, and Lake Oswego rolling to 13-0, including Tigard 42-21.

Lake Oswego won the final 47-14 last season, and has beaten the Irish in the playoffs three times since 2008, including the quarterfinals in 2010.

Sheldon, the state champion in 2009, is 51-2 since losing to Lake Oswego 34-13 in the quarterfinals in 2008. Both losses were in the playoffs to Lake Oswego. The final is set for Saturday at 1 p.m. at Jeld-Wen Field.



Here's the top four upcoming events we're looking at:

1. Oregon volleyball in the Sweet 16 Friday vs. BYU, then the Elite 8 with a win.

2. The Class 6A football championship game Saturday featuring Sheldon vs. Lake Oswego in a grudge match for the Irish.

3. Oregon's men's basketball team is 9-1 heading into Saturday's home game with Idaho State.

4. OSU, which dropped to 4-2 with an 84-78 loss to No. 10 Kansas in Kansas City, Mo., in men's basketball Saturday, plays host to Grambling State on Saturday before getting ready to visit Portland to face Portland State, Dec. 12., at the Stott Center.

ALSO: The wrestling program at Clackamas Community College will face top-ranked Northern Idaho Friday in Couer 'd'Alene, Idaho.

And, Eastern Oregon's men's basketball team is 14-0 and ranked No. 4 nationally among NAIA Div. II schools heading into two weeks off before visiting No. 16 Southern Oregon, Dec. 14.



Cavaliers' early success gets national attention

Concordia is No. 1 and unbeaten through early part of season
Sept. 12, 2012

After six games, Concordia University is right where it wants to be in the NAIA women's soccer season - unbeaten and having a pair of solid victories.

And it's got national attention, too.

The Cavaliers, who've been to the national title match but never won, are 6-0 and have outscored opponents 12-2, including wins over the No. 3 and 12 ranked teams, and moved up to No. 1 this week.

This weekend, the squad heads to Alabama for a pair of matches that will test its ranking.

Concordia is set to play in a tournament at Orange Beach, Ala., against No. No 5 Mobile, Ala., Friday, and No. 17 William Carey on Saturday.

Southern Oregon received votes that would rank it No. 30.



After a 1-1 draw with Notre Dame on Friday, the University of Portland women's team earned a spot at No. in this week's NCAA women's poll.

The Pilots are 4-1-1 with a win over No. 12 North Carolina, but loss to Oregon State, which earned votes to be ranked No. 28.

Notre Dame is not ranked. The Pilots return to action Sunday when they play at USC. UP doesn't face a ranked opponent again until Oct. 13, when No. 17 BYU visits Merlo Field.

OSU is 6-1, but has only played one ranked opponent. The Beavers play host to Gonzaga on Friday and Seattle on Sunday, neither of which is ranked. They begin Pac-12 Conference play with a home match against Utah, Sept. 21. OSU faces No. 3 Stanford, Sept. 27.



Major league passion in minor league football

Players throughout the Northwest keep the game going
May 12, 2012 / By Cliff Pfenning, oregonsports.com

With all the publicity surrounding head injuries, it might be hard to believe football is played by men, and even women, who pay to play, but it happens.

It's all part of the passion the game ignites, from those who played in high school or college, and even some who find their way to an indoor team.

Football is alive and well in the Northwest as a contact sport thanks for minor league teams that play in a variety of leagues.

At oregonsports.com, we've focused on the Pacific Football League with its teams in Oregon and Washington, through the live webcast Pacific Football Weekly, which airs for the first time in 2012 on Wednesday night.

Viewers can follow the show on this page, and log into the UStream chat room to correspond with show hosts, Cliff Pfenning, Charlie Latt and Jaileene Eubanks, who will be recording the show from the Bulldog Tavern in downtown Portland.

It's all available beginning at 8:30 p.m.


Free live streaming by Ustream

The Big Hurt - Greg Oden wants back on the court

EPISODE 1: What if he just played with pain, a lot of pain?
March 5, 2012 / By Kokoma Ika and Cliff Pfenning

As much as the public can make fun of Greg Oden's career, or cringe at the thought of Kevin Durant and LaMarcus Aldridge playing alongside one another, or even shake a fist at the NBA Salary structure that has paid out so much for potential, you have to feel a little for the guy.

If there's one thing worse than playing poorly, it's not playing at all.

And, Portland seems to have given up on him, or at least his knees.

If the only future career he's going to have in Portland is fictitious, here's our version:



Written by
Kokoma Ika
and Cliff Pfenning





BLAZE, The official Portland Trail Blazers mascot, paces back and forth, in front of the Blazers locker room as a package delivery driver walks up, looks both ways, then hands him an envelope.


In huge block letters - VAIL COLORADO ORTHOPEDIC CENTER - is
stamped in the left hand corner. In the center, Greg Oden.

Blaze looks around and sees no one.  He opens the package and pulls out a plain brown 9 X 12 envelope with X-RAY written in block letters in the center.  He frees the clasp and pulls out a single sheet of medical information, which he holds up to a light.

He stares at the X-RAY for a moment, then puts it back into the envelope.
His head slumps as he heads for the door to the locker room.


GREG ODEN, a 7-foot, 285-pound basketball player, pedals vigorously on a
stationary bike.  He watches a television showing a replay of the 2007 NCAA final
between Ohio State and Florida.  A determined focus, a driven stare,
occupies his demeanor.
Sweat cascades down his face.

 A BLAZER TRAINER enters and heads straight over to Oden.

                    BLAZER TRAINER
    Man, you were a beast in that game.  
    I love the dunk that’s about to come up.

Greg slows down his pace, wipes his brow, and stops pedaling.

                    GREG ODEN
    Those were good times...

                    BLAZER TRAINER
    Seen anything yet?

                    GREG ODEN
    Just 25 points, 12 rebounds, and 4 blocks.

                    BLAZER TRAINER
    A delivery guy is supposed to be here soon.

He points at Oden’s knees

    Make sure you ice those down when you’re done.

                    GREG ODEN
    The ice machine.  I’m about ready to give it a first name.

The Blazer Trainer walks away.  Oden grabs the remote control off a stool next
to him and increases the volume on the TV.  He pedals harder and harder as the
game nears its conclusion with Florida winning.  As Florida celebrates, Blaze appears.
Oden slows down and stops.

Blaze walks over to Oden and pauses for one second, two seconds, three seconds.  
Then, he hands Oden the envelope.

                    GREG ODEN
     That bad, huh?

Oden takes hold of the envelope so the contents can slide out.  
He raises the X-RAY to the light and takes a deep breath.  
Then, he looks down at his knees.

                    GREG ODEN
    Man, the media is going to eat this up.  
    Sports radio is gonna eat this up.  
    My agent’s gonna hate me.  

He pauses

    This probably won’t even make Sportscenter.

He glances back down at his knees.

                    GREG ODEN
    Why do you guys hate me so much?

Oden looks fixedly at Blaze.

                    GREG ODEN
    Hey, get me some ice...

He casts his attention away for a moment, then looks back at Blaze scooping ice
out of the ice machine.

                    GREG ODEN
    Those guys from 20 years ago, 30 years ago, 40 years ago, you think
    their knees hurt after a game? Moses. Kareem. Mikan. Wilt. Those guys
    probably would’ve thought a micro-fracture was something that happened
    to a pencil. You think Bill Russell ever missed a season because his knees hurt?  
    Or his team sat him down because he was an investment? He probably would
    have told some writer the team didn’t want him to play because it didn’t want
    to sell tickets. Then, he would’ve put on a jersey, walked onto the court and
    grabbed 30 rebounds. Walton had major problems and he still won a title.

    What if I just played?  

    I gave myself the summer to heal as much as possible from this ...

He picks up the X-ray and glares at it.

    ... and then just played? I get paid whether I play or not.  Think
    they’ll sit me out because I grind my teeth when I run? Or I look like a convict
    when I’m not on the bench with ice on my knees? That would be a look for
    those point guards coming down the lane. “Hey boy, you don’t want to be coming
    down here because I’m not a center, I’m a defensive tackle! So you just stay
    out there in three-point land!”

Blaze looks at him and shakes his head

              GREG ODEN
    What? You saying I can’t act?
    The public would love me do death if I get on the court, even if I had to play with
    ice bags on my knees instead of knee pads.

Oden shakes his head slightly and grins

              GREG ODEN
    I could run for President if I could play 10 games.  
    “Ice Man!”  I already got my nickname.

He fixes his stare intently at Blaze.

                    GREG ODEN
    I know. There’s already an “Ice Man” in the Hall.  “The Ice Man Returneth!”  Sports Illustrated cover right there.
    Refrigerator companies will be begging to get me as a spokesman.

His head slumps, he looks at the floor and then back at
Blaze.  Blaze shoots a look back at him and tips his head
down slightly.

                    GREG ODEN
    Think I can do it?  Ten games?  If I could just play ten games. All those surgeries.  All that time off.  I bet no one even remembers
    the last time I played.  I barely remember.

    You know, I have 41 different suits - one for each home game I can’t play in.

Blaze shakes his head slightly

             GREG ODEN
    Yes, I’m only using 33 this season.
    I don’t want to wear those suits at games.
    I want to suit up in Nike, not Armani.

    If I could just play 10 games, I’ll bet they’d make a movie about me.
    You know that football movie ... “Rudy”? That guy didn’t play 10 games.  

Oden gets off the exercise bike and walks gingerly to a nearby couch and sits down.  
Blaze returns with two large bags of ice.  Oden puts them on his knees.

                    GREG ODEN
    If I could just play 10 games. We could pick the games, too. Home games.
    Important home games. Why do I need to play against the Hornets
    or Bobcats ... or the Spurs when they sit their starters?
    The team really only needs me for big home games and the playoffs.

    They could sell it as a 10-game package.
    We could make it a big deal when I do play. Tweet to the world - Oden
    on the floor tonight! I could appear ... yeah ... like a bullfighter!
    My own dance team ... “The Odenettes!”

    They could dress like nurses!

Blaze looks at the floor and puts his paw over his eyes
Oden pauses and rubs his forehead with the back of one hand.

Short pause

             GREG ODEN
    I had this dream the other night where the inside of my house had been
    transformed into the ice planet Hoth. And, this tall dude walks in and over
    to me and ... and it’s Wilt. He says to me, “Greg, I am your father.”

Oden looks at Blaze and shakes his head

            GREG ODEN
    This not playing is killing me. I’m goin’ nuts. I gotta get on the court.
    Play in front of people.
    Talk to reporters while I’m still sweating.
    Get a highlight on Sportscenter!
    There’s barely any centers in the league anymore. I could be an All-Star on 10 games.

    Man, I’m gonna do it!  I’m gonna play no matter how much it kills me.
    Ten games. We can film it as a documentary and then donate the proceeds
    from the DVD to a charity that helps kids walk.

Blaze and Oden stare at each other. Then Oden looks away and slowly shakes his head.

              GREG ODEN
    Gonna play. I’m gonna play. Man, I’m gonna play. Ten games.
    I’ll get my face back on that grain elevator across the street from the Garden.

Oden looks back at Blaze

              GREG ODEN
    Hey, tonight, get me a photo of Wilt and one of Russell. And Walton. And the name
    of his surgeon. We don’t want that guy.
    And, look up the history of ice ... get me some background so I can dazzle
    all those bloggers who work out the salary cap in their Cheerios.

    ”The Ice Man Returneth.”  

    I’ve got a college buddy who can start that onto the web.
Blaze nods his head slightly

              GREG ODEN
    My body is gonna hurt like hell, but I’m gonna play.

Blaze holds the envelope forward and slowly rips it in two.
Then he and Oden clasp forearms.

              GREG ODEN
    I’ll ask Obama to be my VP. He can do that, you know?

                                              FADE TO BLACK:

Ducks are red hot as they roll into Civil War week

4CAST: Oregon's sweep of LA schools has it tied for Pac-12 lead
MONDAY / Jan. 23, 2012

The Oregon Ducks will play host to Oregon State Sunday in the first Civil War of the men's basketball season and tip-off with their first four-game win streak in Pac-12 play in five years.

Oregon swept the Los Angeles schools at home a week after sweeping the Arizona schools on the road and is 15-5 overall, 6-2 in conference play, and tied for the conference lead with California.

Oregon State enters the game with season momentum as well after also sweeping the LA schools, including a 78-59 humbling of USC Saturday. The Beavers had four players in double figures led by Jared Cunningham's 18, and improved to 13-7, 3-5.

The Ducks rallied from a 13-point deficit to beat UCLA 75-68 Saturday at Matthew Knight Arena behind EJ Singler, who scored a career-high 26 points, and Garret Sim, who added 20, including a 7-0 run during the 13-0 run that started the second half. The Oregon rally also got a huge assist with a pair of blocks from center Tony Woods. Singler made 16 of 17 free throws in the game.

Oregon outscored UCLA at the foul line by 18 points, hitting 28 of 32 free throws, while the Bruins made just 10 of 21.

Oregon State fueled its win Saturday with 10 steals, but the Beavers made just 12 of 21 free-throw attempts.

In other highlights for this week, the Trail Blazers return to the Rose Garden for games Monday against Sacramento and Tuesday against Memphis.

The Winterhawks also return to Portland for a Tuesday-night game against Everett after consecutive losses in Spokane over the weekend.

And, the Portland Timbers open their second season in Major League Soccer with training camp Monday at Jeld-Wen Field.



Blazers prep for Sacramento

Timbers open training camp

Winterhawks face Everett Tuesday



Oregon and Oregon State head for Civil War Week



Jesuit and South Medford top Class 6A boys and girls rankings

No. 2 Central Catholic survives upset bid by David Douglas



Oregon fencing lures North American Cup stop


Roosevelt returns to Portland

The Roughriders rejoin the PIL among classification shifts
By Cliff Pfenning, oregonsports.com

It was just two years ago that the Roosevelt High football team struggled to score a touchdown and then the school suffered an athletic indignity when it's athletic program got dropped from Class 5A to 4A, where it no longer played in the Portland Interscholastic League as it had for the previous eight decades.

Monday, the Roughriders returned to the PIL beginning in fall of 2012.

In a move unseen just a month earlier, Roosevelt requested and received approval from the OSAA Executive Board to move back to Class 5A where it will rejoin Benson, Cleveland, Franklin, Jefferson, Madison and Wilson as part of the longest-lasting district in the state. Roosevelt's attendance average allows for it to be classified as a 4A school, but schools are allowed to "play up" one classification upon request. Jefferson could also be classified as 4A due to its attendance.

Grant and Lincoln are also members of the PIL, but play at Class 6A as part of a special district that includes numerous other schools - from Redmond to South Eugene -  depending on the sport.

The Roughriders will rejoin the PIL as a favorite to win the league in football after a 6-3 season and ranking of No. 20 in Class 4A. Of the six PIL schools in 5A, only Jefferson posted a winning record (6-5) and five of its wins were over PIL schools, who finished ranked in the bottom five spots in Class 5A. During the 2009 season, the Roughriders were winless and were shutout four times, including their opening three games.

Roosevelt's move was one of a number of classification shifts that inluded Scio, which has played in the past three Class 2A football title games, moving up from 2A to 3A.

Most of the classification movement was downward.

Waldport, Myrtle Point and Grant Union moved from 3A to 2A, while Crow and Yoncalla moved from 2A to 1A.

Thurston (6A) and Toledo (3A) requested a move down, but were denied. Marshfield is looking into moving from 5A to 4A and South Eugene has also hinted at a move from 6A to 5A. If both Thurston and South Eugene moved to 5A, it would leave only Sheldon as a Class 6A school in the Eugene area.

Among the other news from the Executive Board meeting, the upcoming split of Redmond's student population will move the school to 5A, while the newly created Ridgeview High will enter athletic play as a 4A school.


Big Saturday awaits Oregon's Big 3

Jones, Moser and Ross get national attention with big games

The trio of former Oregon prep basketball stars will be in line for national attention Saturday as they all face entertaining match-ups, two of which will be televised nationally.

Terrence Ross, a standout at Jefferson High in Portland, will lead Washington against Duke at Madison Square Garden, beginning at 9 a.m. on CBS. Ross is averaging 16.6 points per game for the Huskies, who are 4-3 against a slew of solid opponents.

Former Grant High standout Mike Moser, who is averaging 15.8 points and 12.5 rebounds per game, leads UNLV against Wisconsin Saturday night.

And Terrence Jones, one of the nation's top professional prospects, leads Kentucky against Indiana Saturday at 2:15 p.m., averaging 15 points and 7.5 rebounds per game.

Jesuit grat Kyle Wiltjer is playing a key role as a reserve for Kentucky, averaging 6.4 points per game in limited action.

Oregon (6-2) begins a seven-game homestand Saturday against Fresno State.

Oregon State (7-1) plays host to Idaho Friday in the start of a five-game homestand.

Portland State (5-2) plays at Utah Valley in Orem, Utah, to start a stretch of games in which it plays on the road six times in seven outings. The Vikings play at Oregon Monday and at Oregon State, Dec. 18.

Portland (3-6) plays host to Ohio University Saturday.



Kyle Singler en el Lucentum from Sandra Vazquez Fotografia on Vimeo.

Moser muscles into public's attention

Former Grant standout makes waves nationally at UNLV
By Cliff Pfenning, oregonsports.com

If you remember prep standout Mike Moser of Grant and followed him only casually, you probably remember him landing at UCLA two years ago.

He stayed there a year.

He showed up on the national radar this week, though, at UNLV after the Runnin' Rebels beat North Carolina over the weekend in the championship game of a tourney in Las Vegas.

Moser had 16 points and 18 rebounds in the 90-80 win and was named national Player of the Week by ESPN. Wednesday, he went off for 34 points and 10 rebounds in a 94-88 double-overtime win at UC Santa Barbara.

Not too shabby for someone who basically disappeared at UCLA.

It's great to see the accolades for a person who is now in the same draft class as former Jefferson standout Terrence Jones, regarded as one of the top players in the nation by numerous sources. Moser might not yet be in the same class as Jones in terms of pro potential, but he's making some great strides and putting up numbers that'll keep him moving there. Wednesday, he hit five three-pointers.

Moser left Grant as something of a raw talent, a player who could score and play defense, but mostly because he was taller and had longer arms than opponents. He hadn't yet grown into the muscular player who could handle opponents near a basket, on offense or defense. That seems to have changed.

What makes Moser's strides most notable is that he's in a different class in terms of reputation for a lot of people who knew both players in North and Northeast Portland. Moser played on both ends of the court, while Jones regularly didn't cross mid-court to play defense as a junior or senior. Jefferson still won the state title both seasons, but that only made those people close to the teams it beat angrier with his apparent lack of interest.

Moser didn't play that way - give some credit to his coach Tony Broadous for that.

Now that UNLV is ranked in the Top 25 and is 8-0 with potential, Moser is likely to start drawing some comparisons to Jones as both are small forwards in the NBA. Jones might be the better player, currently, but Moser might be the hungrier player and that has a way of turning into a longer career.




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