MINNEAPOLIS — With the imminent arrival of USC and UCLA, the Big Ten's overdue name change has become obvious. Welcome, West Coasters, to The Big Tent. When Kevin Warren left the Minnesota Vikings to become commissioner of the Big Ten three years ago, I predicted he could use the job as a stepladder to become the next commissioner of the NFL. Now that he's adding the Trojans and Bruins, you ...

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — In a more just version of his journey, Otis Taylor would have been in prominent view over this fourth quarter of his life instead of sight unseen. We’d routinely have seen him around Kansas City or out at Arrowhead Stadium, like so many other legendary Chiefs. He would have retained a measure of his uncanny command over a frame that was 6-foot-3, 215 pounds in his prime — ...

LOS ANGELES — You can look up to the broadcast booth at Dodger Stadium, but you won’t see Vin Scully there any more. Next year, you won’t see Jaime Jarrín there. You can buy a Dodger Dog, but Farmer John doesn’t make them any more. And, from the list of disappearing Dodger Stadium traditions, this just in: You can buy a bag of peanuts from Roger Owens, but he can’t throw the bag to you any ...

RALEIGH, N.C. — And Happy First Anniversary to college athletics’ NIL era. Roses, chocolates, maybe a Cameo message from your favorite college athlete all make for an appropriate celebratory gift. A year ago Friday, on July 1, 2021, the NCAA granted college athletes the right to profit off of their name, image and likeness. And what a year it has been. Just think of all the joy it has brought ...

PITTSBURGH — The Big Ten, Pac-12 and ACC entered into some sort of "historic alliance" to work together toward making a better future for college athletics. It was in response to the SEC raiding the Big 12 for Oklahoma and Texas, and the three conference commissioners issued statements and had video conferences to tell the world they were unified and ready to move college athletics forward. ...

LOS ANGELES — UCLA's athletic deficit crisis could be solved by a new benefactor freely spewing cash. Its football team could move out of the massive shadows cast by those wacky late nights. Its basketball team could go on a barnstorming tour of blue bloods, from Michigan State to Indiana to the onetime home of its greatest icon, John Wooden's Purdue. Two years before the Bruins play their ...

TACOMA, Wash. — There are some numbers that pop out when discussing Rainiers outfielder Jarred Kelenic, once considered the best prospect in the Mariners' organization. There's .173 — his career batting average in 123 major league games. There's -2.0 — his career Wins Above Replacement mark during his time in The Show. There is also No. 6 — which is where he was selected in the first round of ...

LOS ANGELES — One of the starting pitchers Friday night at Dodger Stadium has already won a Cy Young Award. In the Los Angeles Dodgers’ 5-1 win over the San Diego Padres, however, it was the other who cemented his place in the midseason discussion for this year’s honor. In perhaps the best start of his career, Tony Gonsolin stole the show in front of 48,076 at Chavez Ravine, giving up just one ...

SAN FRANCISCO — Since signing with the San Francisco Giants, most of Alex Cobb’s first season here has been derailed by poor defense or health issues. His expected ERA: sterling. The actual number: not so much. Opening a three-game weekend series with the Chicago White Sox on Friday, Cobb finally got the results to match. He went five shutout innings in possibly his best start in orange and ...

SEATTLE — There didn’t figure to be a starting pitcher dual Friday night at T-Mobile Park, not with the way Oakland A’s starter James Kaprielian had pitched this season. But that’s what fans got, with the Seattle Mariners’ Marco Gonzales and Kaprielian matching zeros through four innings and both came through with quality starts. Kaprielian was just a bit better than Gonzales, and despite some ...