Howdy, I’m your host, Houston Mitchell. Let’s get right to the news.
The Rams announced Tuesday that they have agreed to terms with quarterback Jared Goff on a four-year extension through the 2024 season. The deal is expected to be worth $134 million, with a record $110 million guaranteed. Goff had two years left on his rookie contract, making the total value of the package worth $161 million.
Goff, 24, agreed to terms the day before the Rams begin game-week preparations for Sunday’s opener against the Carolina Panthers at Charlotte, N.C.
That was regarded as the preferred scenario by the Rams and coach Sean McVay. They did not want Goff to start the season or play any part of it with uncertainty about his future with a franchise that selected him with the No. 1 pick in the 2016 NFL draft.
The Rams were off Tuesday. Goff had been scheduled to speak with reporters after practice Wednesday.
And somewhere, Dieter Brock is saying, “If only I had been born 30 years later.”
Serena Williams now has 100 match victories at the U.S. Open thanks to her 6-1, 6-0 shellacking of Wang Qiang that put her in the semifinals.
Wang, the No. 18 seed, had no winners and won only 15 points; she won four points on Williams’ serve in the first set and three in the second set. Wang gained only one point on her own serve in the second set. Williams had 25 winners and won 90% of her first-serve points.
“The power, I cannot handle it. Just too much for me,” Wang said. “I think she’s really great player. Yeah, she [is] just great. I don’t know what to say.”
Williams will next face Elina Svitolina, who defeated Johanna Konta, 6-4, 6-4. Svitolina has lost four of her five career matches against Williams.
Chris Evert has the record for most match victories at the U.S. Open with 101, meaning Williams can pass her if she wins the championship.
On the men’s side, Roger Federer, hampered by tightness in his upper back and neck Tuesday afternoon, lost to Grigor Dimitrov, 3-6, 6-4, 3-6, 6-4, 6-2 victory. Federer committed 61 unforced errors against Dimitrov, who will face Daniil Medvedev in the semifinals.
There has been a lot of pressure thrust onto the shoulder of freshman USC quarterback Kedon Slovis, who will start now that JT Daniels is out for the season. But former Rams quarterback and Super Bowl MVP Kurt Warner isn’t worried about him at all.
“That’s what he always wanted,” said Warner, Slovis’ offensive coordinator at Desert Mountain High in Scottsdale, Ariz. “He wanted the expectations on his shoulders. He wanted to be pushed, to be great.”
As a sophomore, in his first season on Desert Mountain’s varsity team, expectations were low. Coaches understood that Slovis, with his impressive arm and ideal throwing mechanics, was the most talented option at quarterback. But a three-year starter stood ahead of him on the depth chart, and Warner ran a complex offense that required some seasoning.
So Slovis sat and absorbed as much as he could from Warner. By the next season, Slovis took the reins with a deep understanding of Warner’s offense.
“I told him all the time, ‘We’re going to ask you to do more than probably any other high school quarterback in the country,’ ” Warner said. “We’re going to expect you to live up to that because that’s probably the only chance we have. “
And succeed he did. Now he is being asked to do basically the same at USC.
“It’s not going to be an easy road,” Warner said. “It’s kind of a baptism by fire. But this is what he always played for.”
USC FOOTBALL SCHEDULE
All times Pacific
d. Fresno State, 31-23
Saturday vs. Stanford, 7:30 p.m., ESPN, 790 KABC
Sept. 14 at BYU, 12:30 p.m., ABC or ESPN or ESPN 2, 790 KABC
Sept. 20 vs. Utah, 6 p.m., FS1, 790 KABC
Sept. 28 at Washington, TBD, 790 KABC
Oct. 12 at Notre Dame, 4:30 p.m. NBC, 790 KABC
Oct. 19 vs. Arizona, TBD, 790 KABC
Oct. 25 at Colorado, 6 p.m., ESPN2, 790 KABC
Nov. 2 vs. Oregon, TBD, 790 KABC
Nov. 9 at Arizona State, TBD, 790 KABC
Nov. 16 at California, TBD, 790 KABC
Nov. 23 vs. UCLA, TBD, 790 KABC
Bruins coach Chip Kelly prefers his teams to have a tough non-conference schedule compared to the relatively easy schedule many team prefer.
The Bruins (0-1) will host San Diego State (1-0), a Pac-12 Conference slayer in recent seasons, in their home opener Saturday at the Rose Bowl after starting the season on the road against Cincinnati, which won 11 games in 2018.
After San Diego State is a home game against No. 4 Oklahoma.
“To me, it’s a great experience,” Kelly said. “I’d rather play games like this all the time than play some cupcake to try to warm this thing up. Let’s go play the best and see what we can do.”
UCLA remains among the major-conference teams that have never played an FCS opponent in the modern era.
UCLA FOOTBALL SCHEDULE
All times Pacific
Cincinnati 24, UCLA 14
Saturday vs. San Diego State, 1:15 p.m., Pac-12 Network, AM 1150
Sept. 14 vs. Oklahoma, 5 p.m., Fox, AM 1150
Sept. 21 at Washington State, TBD, AM 1150
Sept. 28 at Arizona, TBD, AM 1150
Oct. 5 vs. Oregon State, TBD, AM 1150
Oct. 17 at Stanford, 6 p.m., ESPN
Oct. 26 vs. Arizona State, TBD, AM 1150
Nov. 2 vs. Colorado, TBD, AM 1150
Nov. 16 at Utah, TBD, AM 1150
Nov. 23 at USC, TBD, AM 1150
Nov. 30 vs. California, TBD, AM 1150
Julio Urias gave up one run in three innings in his return from a 20-game suspension and the Dodgers got a three-run homer from Russell Martin and solo shots from David Freese and Justin Turner in a 5-3 victory over Colorado.
Mike Trout hit his 44th home run of the season but it wasn’t enough as the Angels lost to the Oakland A’s, 7-5.
The Sparks played sloppy and slow throughout, finishing with 19 turnovers and 24 fouls committed, but had enough to defeat Atlanta, 70-60.
Before the game, Sparks coach Derek Fisher talked to Dylan Hernandez about coaching in the WNBA after coaching in the NBA.
“Just getting into coaching right after playing, you don’t know if that’s your thing,” Fisher said. “But I feel like now I do.”
The reference was to his disastrous tenure with the New York Knicks. Hired to coach the team by Phil Jackson, Fisher was fired two-thirds of the way into his second season.
Fisher acknowledged the experience left him despondent.
“I think leaving New York, how it happened, the way it happened, a lot of the untruthful conversation that was disseminated following my firing there, it can leave you feeling dark and cynical about organizational politics and culture and working with certain people, etc.,” he said.
As the coach of the Sparks, Fisher has emphasized to his players the importance of fundamentals. A return to the basics was what he needed as well. The WNBA provided that for him.
“There’s less of the facade of being a part of the biggest sports thing in the world,” he said.
If the absence of outside noise offered him a degree of peace that would be impossible to find in the NBA, his players supplied him with inspiration.
There is no chartered travel in the WNBA. Roster sizes are limited. Many of the athletes supplement their incomes by playing in Europe in the offseason.
Fisher mentioned the hypothetical example of an NBA player who develops his body and game over multiple offseasons to make a gradual transition to an All-Star.
“A lot of times, these women aren’t getting that chance,” Fisher said. “They’re battling Achilles injuries, knee injuries, back stuff, shoulder stuff, from just playing year round.”
He also appreciated how the players treated each other.
“I think women, in general, care about the other woman’s experience and her teammate’s experience, sometimes too much their opponent’s experience, just because that’s how women are,” Fisher said. “There’s a care there. There’s a compassion there.”
Khris Middleton’s two free throws with 2.1 seconds left in overtime saved the United States from what would have been a shocking loss, as the two-time defending champion rallied to beat Turkey 93-92 in a FIBA World Cup Group E game in Shanghai.
The U.S. has won 21 consecutive World Cup games, extending the record for any nation at FIBA’s signature event.
Simone Biles released a statement on Twitter, days after her brother was arrested on murder charges tied to a triple homicide that occurred at an Airbnb rental in Cleveland on New Year’s Eve.
The 22-year-old U.S. gymnast tweeted: “still having a hard time processing last weeks news,” and attached the following statement:
“My heart aches for everyone involved, especially for the victims and their families. There is nothing that I can say that will heal anyone’s pain, but I do want to express my sincere condolences to everyone affected by this terrible tragedy.
“I ask everyone to please respect my family’s privacy as we deal with our pain.”
Notre Dame quarterback Ian Book re-created a classic scene from “The Brady Bunch” during Monday’s 35-17 victory over Louisville. Unfortunately, Louisville cheerleader Elizabeth Scott had no idea she was re-creating the role of Marcia Brady.
Early in the fourth quarter, Book, playing the role of Peter Brady, threw the ball out of bounds to avoid a sack. Unfortunately for Scott, the ball sailed out of bounds and right into her nose. Just like in the episode “The Subject Was Noses,” when Peter accidentally hit Marcia in the nose with a football.
Scott walked away with her hands on her face. Turns out her nose was broken.
She had a great sense of humor about it later on Twitter:
“My broken nose is Twitter trending. Well, my nose is crooked, but I’ll always have a good story to tell.”
And now that mean old Doug Simpson will break his date with her.
YOUR FAVORITE SPORTS MOMENT
What is your favorite L.A. sports moment? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I might run it in a future Morning Briefing. And yes, if your favorite moment is about the Angels or Ducks or a team just outside of L.A., I’ll count that too.
Today’s moment comes from David Crippen:
“As a 15-year-old Rams fan, I attended the 1951 NFL Championship at the Coliseum. The year before, my heart sank as I listened to the Browns’ Lou Groza kick a fourth-quarter field goal to defeat the Rams. The Rams also known as the Flying Circus with Bob Waterfield and Norm Van Brocklin alternating as quarterbacks and receivers Tom Fears and Crazy Legs Hirsch were spectacular to watch.
“My uncle secured a ticket for me from one of the aircraft parts vendors he inspected. The seat was on the 40-yard-line in the 30th row. The Browns led at halftime and the score was tied in the fourth quarter, when Van Brocklin connected with Tom Fears on a 73-yard touchdown pass play to secure the victory.
“I have attended many other sports events, World Series, UCLA-USC football games and the Rose Bowl, I also was a member of a 10th-grade cross-country team that won the Western League Championship, but none match the thrill of the Rams revenging themselves on the Browns.”
TODAY’S LOCAL MAJOR SPORTS SCHEDULE
All times Pacific
Colorado at Dodgers, 7 p.m., Sportsnet LA, AM 570
Angels at Oakland, 7 p.m., FSW, AM 830
BORN ON THIS DATE
1918: Tennis player Bill Talbert (d. 1999)
1932: Basketball player Bevo Francis (d. 2015)
1937: Swimmer Dawn Fraser
1942: Golfer Ray Floyd
1949: Golfer Tom Watson
1950: Baseball player Doyle Alexander
1963: NHL player John Vanbiesbrouck
1964: NHL player Tomas Sandstrom
1968: Former Dodger Mike Piazza
DIED ON THIS DATE
1986: Baseball player Hank Greenberg, 75
2011: NFL player Lee Roy Selmon, 56
Mike Piazza hits a home run out of Dodger Stadium. Watch it here.
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