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More than Just the Headlines!
Written by Scott Roman   
Tuesday, 26 August 2014 06:38


Organized labor and pro-business groups are waging an intense lobbying campaign directed at Michigan teachers who are deciding whether to remain in their union. The teachers' decisions will be the first big test of the state's new right-to-work law.
Many of the 112,000 school employees in the Michigan Education Association can now leave the union and stop paying fees under the law that took effect last year. Union leaders are urging them to stay or risk losing their say in school policies. Conservative groups are running ads publicizing the chance for teachers to save their dues money, which can amount to $1,000 annually. The deadline for deciding is Sunday. Contracts for most other major union groups don't expire until 2015 or later.




Big Rapids, MI - The preseason recognition continues for the Ferris State University football program in anticipation for the upcoming 2014 campaign as a pair of Bulldog standouts, junior quarterback Jason Vander Laan (Frankfort, Ill./Chicago Christian) and junior defensive end Justin Zimmer (Greenville), have been chosen to the Beyond Sports Network (BSN) Preseason All-Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) First Team. Previously this week, both were also recognized as 2014 preseason first-team All-Americans with Vander Laan claiming acclaim from BSN and Zimmer tabbed to the USA Football squad. On the BSN Preseason All-GLIAC squad, Vander Laan was one of two quarterbacks chosen along with Ohio Dominican's Mark Miller. Meanwhile, Zimmer was one of five defensive linemen chosen to the list. The preseason all-league picks were made by the BSN staff and based on returning performers from last season's all-conference teams, game evaluations and overall statistics. Previously, the two standouts were chosen earlier this week among the seven Ferris State student-athletes who claimed USA Football Preseason All-American recognition. Zimmer headlined the group of Bulldogs as a USA Football Preseason First-Team All-American and was joined on the list by a trio of third-team senior defensive picks in tackle Corey Stone (Sterling Heights/Stevenson), linebacker Darnell Morris (Detroit/Inkster) and defensive back A.J. McEwen (East Grand Rapids). The offensive unit was represented by Vander Laan along with a pair of preseason honorable mention choices in junior lineman Adam Bennett (Romeo) and senior receiver Jake Lampman (East Lansing/Haslett). Zimmer played a key role on a Bulldog defensive unit that got stronger as the year went on in 2013 and eventually led the league in total defense. As a redshirt sophomore, Zimmer paced FSU and ranked among the league leaders with both 7.5 sacks (-33 yards) and 10.5 tackles for loss (-41 yards). He ranked fourth among the team leaders with 57 tackles and scored a touchdown on a 20-yard interception return last year. The standout end also had seven quarterback hurries, blocked two kicks and forced two fumbles while starting all 11 games. Last fall, Vander Laan was among the nation's Harlon Hill Trophy candidates and ranked as the nation's top running quarterback with more rushing yards on the ground last season than any other signal caller in the country, regardless of level. His 1,607 total yards rushing finished tops among all quarterbacks at the NCAA Division I, II or III level, including both the FBS and FCS levels of competition. In addition, his total topped the all-time NCAA Division II single-season mark for rushing yards by a quarterback last year. Overall, Vander Laan ranked fourth nationally in rushing touchdowns (21) along with seventh nationally in rushing yards (1,607). Vander Laan was also eighth in the country in scoring (11.5 ppg.) and second in the GLIAC in points responsible for (216). Earlier this week, Vander Laan was also listed among the national nominees for the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) Good Works Team. The performance of Vander Laan and Zimmer in 2013 helped the Bulldogs finish with an 8-3 overall record along with a second-place 8-2 finish in the GLIAC North Division standings. FSU, which finished the year riding a four-game winning streak, narrowly missed receiving the school's first playoff bid in 17 years. The Bulldogs' eight-win campaign was the school's first since 2006 and only the second in the program's last 16 seasons. In addition, FSU's eight league victories were its most since 1996 and the four-game winning streak to close the season was the longest to end a campaign since 2001. The Bulldogs will begin their 106th season of varsity competition this coming fall with their sights set on competing for a potential GLIAC Championship and a NCAA Division II Playoff berth. FSU opens the 2014 campaign with a non-league contest at McKendree (Ill.) on Thursday, Sept. 4, before visiting Northwood for their GLIAC opener on Sept. 13 in Midland. FSU's 2014 home opener at Top Taggart Field will be on Sept. 20 as the Bulldogs entertain archrival Grand Valley State in the Anchor-Bone Classic with kickoff set for 7 p.m. (ET). Both season and individual game tickets for all 2014 home contests are now on sale and can be purchased thru the FSU Athletics Ticket Office by calling (231) 591-2888 or online at StarTickets.com. For more information, please visit FerrisStateBulldogs.com.



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Ferris State Sports

  • Softball Coaching Staff Additions Made As Bulldogs Build For Success
    Big Rapids, Mich. - Ferris State University softball head coach Sarah Rotta has bolstered her coaching staff in preparation for the upcoming 2015 campaign.
  • WATCH: Media Day Recap
    The Ferris State University football team put on its game uniforms for the first time in 2014 as the Bulldogs held their annual media and fan photo day activities along with a morning scrimmage on the FSU campus at Top Taggart Field on Saturday (Aug. 23).
  • Ferris State Women's Basketball To Hold Walk-On Tryouts
    Big Rapids, Mich. - The Ferris State University women's basketball program will hold walk-on tryouts for the upcoming 2014-15 campaign on Monday, Sept. 8, at FSU's Jim Wink Arena.

Olympic News

International Olympic Committee : News
WWW.OLYMPIC.ORG - Official website of the Olympic Movement - News
  • Gold for ‘Sport for Hope Centre’ athlete Sydney Siame

    The multi-sport complex in Lusaka, inaugurated in 2010, aims to promote and facilitate access to sports for young athletes and local communities.

    The 16-year old won with the impressive time of 10.56sec, just one hundredth of a second ahead of Kenta Oshima (JPN) who took second place. Sydney’s achievement will no doubt prove an inspiration to other young athletes at the Sport for Hope Centre and help encourage more young Zambians to take up sport.

    With the emphasis on having a positive impact within the community, Sydney Siame really has embodied what the Sport for Hope Centre set out to achieve.

    Sydney commented "It's been so long for Zambia to win a medal like this. I think the people at home are very happy."

    The Sport for Hope Programme aims to provide athletes in developing countries with the opportunities to practice sport and be educated in the values of Olympism. Believing that every individual should have access to sport, the IOC works continuously towards making this vision a reality.

    A second Sport for Hope Centre opened a few weeks ago in Port-au-Prince, Haiti

    Discover the International Olympic Committee’s Sport for Hope Centre in Zambia


  • More bronze medals awarded in boxing, as new scoring system gets the thumbs-up

    Japan’s Subaru Murata won light flyweight bronze by beating Shalkar Aikhynbay of Kazakhstan 2-1, before declaring his aim to compete on home soil six years down the line. “My heart is strong, that is the key to my medal,” said Murata. “Little by little, my heart gets stronger with training. My next aim is the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.”

    The night’s other bronze medals were won by Turkey’s Adem Furkan Avci (light welterweight), Croatia’s Luka Plantic (middleweight), Ireland’s Michael Gallagher (heavyweight) and Russia’s Marat Kerimkhanov (super heavyweight).

    Boxers at the Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games are competing under the new International Boxing Association (AIBA) scoring system.  Under the new scoring system the winner of each round is awarded 10 points, as is the case in professional boxing. Five ringside judges score the fight, but the scorecards of only three of them are totalled to form the final score.

    The former computerised punch-count system has been discarded and now only the time is displayed on screens during the bouts, not a running score.

    And the consensus from the coaches is that the changes are a big success. “We think it is a better system, fairer, where they pick the three judges from the five,” said British coach Gary Hale, after his boxer Peter McGrail defeated Salem Tamma (ALG) three rounds to nil to win the bantamweight bronze.

    It is also hoped that the new scoring system will improve fighter safety by shifting the focus to technical skills and ring dominance rather than punch volume. “It means the boxers have to engage and work more to get the points,” said Australia coach Marcus Wilson, whose fighter Satali Tevi-Fuimaono finished fifth in the middleweight category.

  • Slovenia and Republic of Korea take handball honours

    Slovenian captain Jaka Malus described his side’s performance as “the top of the top” after a nail-biting clash against their African opponents at the Jiangning Sports Centre.

    “We knew from the beginning of the tournament that we would win, but yesterday we almost lost [in the semi-final against Norway]. But we stayed focused and in the last five minutes we won,” Malus said after contributing six goals to his side’s victory.

    Malus went on to reveal that, to mark the triumph, the team coach Janez Klemencic would be become the latest resident of the Youth Olympic Village to take a soaking in the name of charity.

    “We have a bet. I said to him if we won, he gets the ice bucket challenge so you will see the ice bucket challenge from our coach online,” he explained.

    Koreans enjoy their moment of triumph

    The women’s handball final was an even tighter affair, with the Republic of Korea edging past Russia 32-31 to wipe out memories of a 36-31 defeat by the same opponent in the preliminary round several days earlier.

    The teams have faced each other in elite level competition three times recently, with Republic of Korea leading the face-offs 2-1.

    “In Macedonia [at the 2014 Junior World Championships], we beat the Russian team and in this competition we lost [the preliminary game],” said the Republic of Korea coach Oh Seil. “So we did our best to win this game.”

    Earlier in the day, Sweden beat Brazil 23-16 in the women’s bronze medal match.

    “Our team is very close and we’re like a big family,” Sweden’s delighted captain Anna Johansson said. “We fight together and it’s amazing. We will have a good evening together and laugh a lot.”

    In the men’s bronze medal match, Magnus Abelvik Rod scored 11 goals to lead Norway to a 33-25 win against Qatar.