Sports

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BMX rider Dave Mirra, who for years dominated his sport even as he helped others embrace it, has died at age 41. Police in Greenville, N.C., say they found Mirra "sitting in a truck with an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound."

Police found Mirra in a parked vehicle shortly after he had visited friends in Greenville, where he had lived for years as an active member of the community. Mirra is survived by his wife and two daughters.

The White House / flickr

While basketball didn’t take up residence in the White House in January 2009, the game nonetheless played an outsized role in forming the man who did, according to Sports Illustrated’s Alexander Wolff, author of The Audacity of Hoop: Basketball and the Age of Obama.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

University of Connecticut Athletic Director Warde Manuel is leaving Connecticut to take over the University of Michigan's athletic program.

Amherst College trustees have voted to stop using Lord Jeff as the school's unofficial mascot because of its negative historical connotations. 

Jeff Cohen / WNPR

A week after announcing a three-way deal to pay for $10 million in construction overruns at Hartford's new minor league baseball stadium, Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin held a town hall meeting with residents to talk about it. 

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

Bankruptcy proceedings for the failed television venture called the Back9Network are continuing, and a federal judge said Monday that she would approve a plan to let the Hartford-based company borrow more money. 

It was a tale of two defenses — and two very divergent outcomes — in the NFL's conference championship games Sunday.

In the NFC, the Carolina Panthers stormed their way to a commanding victory over the Arizona Cardinals. Earlier in the day, in the AFC, the Denver Broncos narrowly survived a late-game push from the New England Patriots to emerge with a win.

The victories mean conference titles for the Panthers and the Broncos — and, more importantly, a trip to the Super Bowl for both teams.

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin announced Wednesday a deal between the city, the developer of Hartford’s new minor league baseball stadium, and the Hartford Yard Goats that will cover a $10.3 million shortfall to complete the stadium.

The city said the stadium will be ready for the team's home opener on May 31. The stadium was originally scheduled to open April 7. 

Wikimedia Commons

How disgraceful was last weekend's Cincinnati Bengals/Pittsburgh Steelers game? Well, Boomer Esiason, a former Bengals quarterback, used that word - disgraceful - to describe his old team and its fans. Rush Limbaugh, not a noted opponent of violence, used the word "disgrace" twice to describe the flagrant thuggery on the field.

Alabama beat Clemson 45-40 in Monday night's College Football Playoff National Championship, giving the Crimson Tide their fourth title in seven seasons. Heisman-winning running back Derrick Henry ran for 158 yards and scored three touchdowns for Alabama.

It was a remarkably high-scoring game for the teams — Alabama had allowed an average of 13.4 points coming into the game, while Clemson had allowed 20 points per game.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

It's been one week since Luke Bronin was sworn in as Hartford's 67th mayor. This hour, he stops by to discuss his plans for the city. We talk about ballparks and city budgets; schools and salary increases. And we take your questions, too. What do you want to ask the mayor?

It's unusual to hear a current NFL player criticize the league, let alone talk frankly about its handling of concussions or its response to domestic violence scandals.

But a new book does just that. It's called NFL Confidential, a memoir of the 2014 football season written by a player who goes only by Johnny Anonymous.

The player spoke with All Things Considered host Audie Cornish this week, after NPR confirmed his identity before the interview.

He says he loves playing the game but thinks the NFL is manipulative and exploitative.

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin has begun closed-door negotiating sessions with the stakeholders in the new, $56 million minor league baseball stadium that is neither on time nor on budget.

There will be two new members of the Baseball Hall of Fame. Outfielder Ken Griffey Jr. and catcher Mike Piazza are being awarded the sport's highest individual honor.

"Junior," who hit 630 home runs, had one of the game's sweetest hitting strokes, and his energy and enthusiasm for the game earned him the nickname "the Kid." He is the son of slugger Ken Griffey Sr.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Two issues are swirling in the capital city -- one is whether the new minor league baseball stadium will be finished on time and on budget. The other is $20,000 raise given to city Treasurer Adam Cloud that nobody seems to remember. And, soon, Hartford will have a new mayor in place to deal with both.

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

The state-funded, off-the-air Back9Network has filed for bankruptcy, with the hope of emerging with an existing group of shareholders who will restructure the company. 

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

Faced with concerns that the minor league baseball stadium the city wants built may not be on time or on budget, the stadium’s developers said that the city “breached” its agreement by failing to give the developer complete control over the project. But the city said the developer's claims are "bogus."

Seinfeld / NBC

It's time to air your grievances about the news of 2015. Our weekly news roundtable The Wheelhouse will convene for the first time ever on the Costanza-invented holiday of Festivus! We have lots of grievances, but what do you want to speak up about? Who should participate in the feats of strength?

Centerplan Construction

The head of the Hartford agency overseeing the new $56 million minor league baseball stadium project said he is concerned that the project won't be done in time for opening day in April. But the stadium's developer said that's not the case. 

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

The off-the-air Back9Network allegedly didn't pay rent for things like video equipment and a robotic camera, according to a new lawsuit filed in state court. 

Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred announced Monday he would not lift the ban on Pete Rose, meaning the legendary hitter also will not be eligible for the Hall of Fame, according to current rules.

Jeff Cohen / WNPR

The effort to revive the neighborhood around downtown Hartford’s new minor league baseball stadium is gaining some big name support -- and a new hotel.

Hard Rock Hotel Hartford will open near the Dunkin’ Donuts Park, the new home of the Hartford Yard Goats, the developers said. 

Bill Streicher / USA TODAY Sports

The University of Massachusetts has announced a deal that will have New England's three FBS football programs facing each other several times over the next five seasons. 

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

There were a few years when the greens of Hartford’s Goodwin Park Golf Course were a dull shade of brown. The grass had faded, trees and weeds were overgrown, and several years of mismanagement and a poor economy left the course in such bad condition that it almost had to be closed.

But Beaky Gilbert and his golfing partners didn’t stop playing there, and their dedication might have paid off.

Back9Network flickr.com/back9network / Creative Commons

The federal Securities and Exchange Commission wants to know more about the relationship between Hartford Treasurer Adam Cloud and the off-the-air, state-funded golf channel called the Back9Network. 

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