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al golden gives game ball to hunter knightonAl Golden has been on the hot seat at Miami for what seems like two seasons now, and Saturday’s 58-0 home loss to ACC favorite Clemson was the final straw. Miami announced that Golden has been “relieved of his duties” in a statement this evening.Golden Relieved of his Duties Effective Immediately – https://t.co/vdB4TtmNt9— Miami Hurricanes (@MiamiHurricanes) October 25, 2015University of Miami Director of Athletics Blake James announced today that he has relieved Head Football Coach Al Golden of his duties effective immediately. Assistant coach Larry Scott will serve as the Interim Head Coach for the remainder of the 2015 season. “Coach Golden has led our program through some very difficult times and he has done so with class, integrity and a true desire to see our students succeed on the field, in the classroom and in the community.” James said. “However, we have a proud tradition of excellence at Miami, not just in football but in all sports, and we want to compete for ACC and national championships. I simply believe that now is the time to bring the Hurricane Family together and rally behind our young men.”This is a shift from Saturday, when James stated that Golden would not be let go. Golden finishes with a 32-25 record. Miami has been stocking large recruiting classes in 2017 and 2018, so it will be extremely interesting to see what happens with those young players. [Hurricane Sports]
Story Highlights AJA’s gesture of awarding scholarships adds significance to Jamaica’s Independence celebrations AJA lauded for its positive influence on Jamaicans from its scholarship awards programme The Prime Minister’s message was contained in the AJA’s Independence Ball and Scholarship Awards Journal Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Portia Simpson Miller, has praised the United States-based Atlanta-Jamaica Association (AJA) on the positive influence it continues to have on Jamaicans benefitting from its scholarship awards programme.In a message, contained in the AJA’s Independence Ball and Scholarship Awards Journal, to guests attending the function at the Marriott Atlanta Airport Gateway, College Park, Georgia, on August 10, the Prime Minister said it is opportunities like those from the AJA, coupled with hard work and dedication by the recipients, that will result in lasting and positive improvements in the lives of Jamaicans, both individually and collectively, as a nation.“When a celebration such as this (Independence) is combined with a meaningful humanitarian cause which serves to advance independence in people’s lives, it is not just one of special delight, but it assumes greater importance,” she contended.Mrs. Simpson Miller said the AJA’s gesture of awarding scholarships to deserving students, adds significance to Jamaica’s Independence celebrations. She noted that the awards have and will continue to provide meaningful opportunities for the recipients to independently chart a course to shaping their destinies.“Independence is not confined to political freedom, important though it is; but is also about pursuing a path to sustained economic growth and personal enrichment. It is about equipping ourselves with the tools and necessary resources for lasting and ongoing benefit,” she said, adding that the scholarships, will also “serve to cultivate and nurture ongoing and lasting linkages between Jamaicans at home and abroad.”In his remarks, AJA President, Errol Ritchie, said commemoration of Jamaica’s 51st year of independence is a call for Jamaicans at home and in the Diaspora to unite in celebrating the accomplishments of their beloved homeland. This, while acknowledging prevailing and likely challenges, and the need for a positive approach to collectively finding solutions.The AJA, along with the Tropical Sports Club, awarded two scholarship awards Kristin Henry and Desiree Watkis, students attending the University of Georgia. The 2013 AJA President’s Award for Outstanding Community Service went to co-founder of Golden Krust Bakery and Grill, Jacqueline Hawthorne Robinson.Jamaica’s former Honorary Consul to Atlanta, Vin Martin, was also honoured by the association for over sixteen years of dedicated service.
Compared to a few years ago, Norway 2019 is a very different place as many of the nation’s shipping and offshore industries achieved sustained growth through some of the most turbulent times ever faced.Since the last Nor-Shipping in 2017, the number of Norwegian companies owning vessels has increased from 205 to 238. The Norwegian owned fleet has grown by 119 vessels, standing at 2,055 ships, and in turn the gross tonnage of the fleet has increased to 47.74 million GT, according to data provided by VesselsValue.These new vessels have boosted the total fleet value of the Norwegian owned fleet by USD 3.5 billion, bringing their total fleet value to USD 44 billion, ranking fifth most valuable in the world.VesselsValue mentioned Borr Drilling, Solstad and 2020 Bulkers as some of the most notable Norwegian companies.Borr Drilling, the brainchild of John Fredriksen’s former right hand man, Tor Olav Troim, has rocked the market since emerging in late 2016. As of today, Borr has 36 high specification jack-up rigs, as its fleet value stands at USD 3.5 billion.The offshore market conditions over the last few years have taken their toll on Norwegian supply boat owners, and none more so than OSV giant Solstad. In January 2019, Finanstilsynet required Solstad to revalue its entire fleet; in doing so, the total value was reduced by NOK 850 million (USD 99 million).“Solstad has long maintained its fleet valuation figures, so this reduction shows not only Solstad’s acceptance of the continued poor market conditions, but also the resultant asset prices which is a major step forward,” VesselsValue said.And last, but not the least, 2020 Bulkers. Another Troim owned company, 2020 Bulkers has ordered eight newbuild Capesize bulkers at New Times Shipbuilding since late 2017, totalling around USD 350 million. The VV value of these vessels surged to USD 453 million today.However, the money keeps coming in for Tor Olav Troim. In January, 2020 Bulkers confirmed it had secured a long term bank loan running to USD 240 million for its Newcastlemax newbuilding programme. As of this month, 2020 Bulkers has made the move to become listed on the Oslo stock exchange. This move will also be used to fund its newbuild orders to New Times Shipbuilding, showing its continued growth strategy plans for 2019 and beyond, VesselsValue explained.Image Courtesy: VesselsValue
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — Puerto Rico’s governor signed a bill on Monday to overhaul the U.S. territory’s tax laws in a bid to attract foreign investment and help workers and some business owners amid a 12-year recession.The bill creates an earned income tax credit, reduces a sales tax on prepared food and eliminates a business-to-business tax for small to medium companies, among other things.Officials say the bill represents nearly $2 billion in tax relief at a time when the island is struggling to recover from Hurricane Maria and restructure a portion of its more than $70 billion public debt load.“There’s still a lot of work to be done to completely transform the tax system … but we see it as a good first step,” said Cecilia Colon, president of Puerto Rico’s Association of Public Accountants.Gov. Ricardo Rossello said the earned income tax credit will result in benefits ranging from $300 to $2,000 for each worker, representing a total of $200 million in annual savings. He also said an 11.5 per cent sales tax on processed food will drop to 7 per cent starting in October 2019.The bill also eliminates a business-to-business tax for businesses that generate $200,000 or less a year, representing $79 million in savings in five years, Rossello said. Nearly 80 per cent of businesses in Puerto Rico will benefit from that measure, added Treasury Secretary Teresa Fuentes.In addition, the new law reduces the tax rate for corporations from 39 per cent to 37.5 per cent.“Today marks an important day for maintaining Puerto Rico’s competitiveness,” she said.The measure also legalizes tens of thousands of slot machines, but also limits the number of machines owned, with legislators estimating they will generate at least $160 million a year. Up to $40 million of that revenue will go to the government’s general fund, with the remaining funds directed to help municipalities and police officers.However, a federal control board that oversees Puerto Rico’s finances criticized a final draft of the bill last month, saying the island needs a much broader tax reform that improves revenue collection and promotes economic development. A board spokesman did not immediately return a message for comment.Antonio Fernos, a Puerto Rico economics and finance professor, questioned the effectiveness of the new law, which appears to generate less overall revenue.“It doesn’t make sense,” he said. “Why are they doing this, especially on an island that is insolvent and needs more sources of revenue?”Fernos also argued that the earned income tax credit is not enough to lure people out of the informal economy: “I don’t foresee anyone abandoning tax evasion schemes.”Danica Coto, The Associated Press
Peace River North MLA Dan Davies served as the MC of the rally, which has held at roughly the same time as other pro-resource rallies in Terrace, Kitimat, Smithers, and Langley. FSJ for LNG founder Alan Yu kicked things off by impressing the importance of the rally, especially given the short time remaining before Kinder Morgan’s self imposed deadline of whether or not it will proceed with its Trans Mountain pipeline expansion after halting all non-essential work last month.Sean Surerus, who company is one of two Fort St. John-based companies involved in building Trans Mountain through joint ventures, also spoke about the positive aspects of the resource industry in Canada and especially their commitment to safety.“Our shortcuts hurt us in our sector,” said Surerus. “Every moment that we’re in the media for the wrong reasons: a challenge with a pipeline, an incident in safety, a wreck of some sort. Those are ammunition for those who do not support what we do. Every one of us, we’re representing our sector, and it only takes a moment for something to happen. And in our business, a shortcut hurts us and it hurts our sector.”The rally’s keynote speaker was ResourceEd’s Steven Simons, who prior to working with ResourceED worked for the Oil and Gas Commission for a number of years. Simons spoke about many of the same things that Vivian Krause spoke about at last month’s rally, including the trend of environmental groups conducting coordinated attacks on one specific resource industry at a time in a methodical way. Simons also hosted a seminar at NLC on that topic on Saturday night. FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — Local grassroots organization FSJ for LNG held its second rally supporting B.C.’s resource extraction industries in just over a month this past Saturday.Around 50 vehicles, half the number that showed up to the organization’s rally on April 21st, lined up near the UFA cardlock on the city’s south side before travelling by convoy once again to Charlie Lake. A crowd of around 50 attendees then parked at the Charlie Lake boat launch for the second half of the rally, which featured several guest speakers take to the stage, which was supplied by Surerus Pipeline. Peace River North MLA Dan Davies and FFSJ for LNG’s Craig Stevens examine the inside of one of Surerus Pipeline’s 42′ pipes. Photo by Chris Newton
TUNIS – The brokers of long-awaited talks between Tunisia’s ruling Islamists and the opposition said they will make a new attempt to open them on Friday despite doubts over who will attend.“The national dialogue launch will go ahead at 10:00 am (0900 GMT),” the UGTT trade union confederation, which has been the lead mediator in the protracted political crisis, said just hours before the planned start.“We will see which parties turn up.” The mainly secular opposition said on Thursday evening that it would not take part until Islamist Prime Minister Ali Larayedh gives a “clear and explicit” undertaking that his government will step down within three weeks of the dialogue’s launch.The timeframe is part of a hard-won roadmap to put Tunisia’s political transition back on track negotiated by the mediators between the Islamist-led government and the opposition.But the roadmap also sets a parallel one-month timeframe for the adoption of a new constitution and electoral laws, and a timetable for fresh elections, which the government is insisting must also be adhered to.Larayedh gave a new commitment on television late Thursday to the principle of handing over to a government of independents, but again insisted his cabinet’s resignation was conditional on the implementation of other parts of the roadmap.“The government is eager and committed to stand down within the timeframes set by the roadmap but on condition that all its elements are completed in the specified order,” the premier said.The protracted haggling between the two sides has paralysed Tunisian politics since the killing of an opposition member of parliament in July, in an attack blamed on jihadists.It comes against a backdrop of mounting public anger over the growing death toll from jihadist violence, which saw two offices of the ruling Islamist Ennahda party torched on Thursday as six slain police officers were laid to rest.
The Illinois women’s basketball team hasn’t won a Big Ten game this year. That didn’t change Sunday afternoon when No. 10 Ohio State (19-1, 6-1 Big Ten) handed the Fighting Illini (6-14, 0-7 Big Ten) their seventh straight loss, 96-84. While the Buckeyes walk away with a victory, the Illini kept the game close until late in the match. “They’re as athletic as any team in the country,” OSU coach Jim Foster said. Before coming into Sunday’s game, the Fighting Illini had lost their last five games by a total of 18 points, including one overtime game. “We’re almost there, I just got to push them to get better,” said Illinois coach Jolette Law. At the end of the first half, the Buckeyes had a 44-36 lead, but it was in the second period of the game when the Buckeyes would be tested. Illinois cut the lead to four points after junior guard Tayler Hill was called for a flagrant foul. OSU then answered with consecutive 3-point plays from freshman guard Raven Ferguson and freshman forward Kalpana Beach to give OSU an eight-point lead with nine minutes left in the second half, but the lead wouldn’t last. With less than six minutes in the game, Illinois senior guard Lydia McCully hit both foul shots to knot the score at 76. The tie was short-lived though, as Hill and senior guard Samantha Prahalis drained consecutive 3-point shots to give the Buckeyes a six-point lead. “It comes with us being veteran guards and having the experience,” Prahalis said. “When the score is close like that, we need to score. We need to get a good shot.” The three points were among 10 Prahalis had in the final five minutes of the game. Prahalis led all Buckeye scorers with 28 points and six assists, followed closely by Hill, who added 26 points. While OSU only shot 48.6 percent in the first half, OSU rallied in the second half to finish with 96, their highest point total of the year. Sunday’s score was also the largest point total the Buckeyes have put up since 2009. The 84 points were the highest point total any opponent has scored against the Buckeyes this season. The Fighting Illini were led in scoring by junior forward and Ohio native Karisma Penn, who contributed 23 points. Penn was followed by junior guard Adrienne GodBold, who added 18 points and seven rebounds. Sunday’s win increases OSU’s winning streak to four, but the team is still a game behind Purdue for the conference lead. The top two teams in the Big Ten will face each other Feb. 12, when the Boilermakers travel to Columbus, Ohio. OSU will face the Fighting Illini again February 9. The Buckeyes return to action Thursday at Indiana. Tipoff is at 8 p.m.
Redshirt-sophomore Chris Diaz serves the ball during a match against Texas A&M Feb. 9 at the Varsity Tennis Center. OSU won, 4-3.Credit: Alice Bacani / BuckeyeTV news directorRedshirt-senior Peter Kobelt (right) and redshirt-junior Kevin Metka talk before a serve during a match against Texas A&M Feb. 9 at the Varsity Tennis Center. OSU won, 4-3.Credit: Alice Bacani / BuckeyeTV news directorThe game of tennis ranges all across the globe. No one country stands above the rest.In fact, five different countries are represented in the top 12 of the Intercollegiate Tennis Association men’s singles rankings.With the sport being prominent throughout the world, college rosters are littered with players from all over the globe. While the No. 1 Ohio State men’s tennis team is no different, with players on the roster from Croatia, Finland and Germany, what gives them a more “hometown” feel is how three of their starters grew up and played high school tennis in the greater Columbus area.Redshirt-senior Peter Kobelt, redshirt-junior Kevin Metka and redshirt-sophomore Chris Diaz were all familiar with each other before becoming teammates at OSU. All three attended schools in the 614 area code, and their high school teams played one another throughout the season in what were described as friendly matches.Kobelt became a Buckeye by way of New Albany High School, graduating in 2009. During his time there, he won a Division II state title in doubles (2007) and a Division I title in singles (2009) before being named an All-American and ranked in the top 60 in U.S. Seniors Standings.Metka graduated from Worthington Kilbourne in 2010 and won the Division I state singles title that year, taking home the Division I doubles title the year before.Graduating from Watterson in 2011, Diaz and was the most glorified of the three coming out of high school. After winning a state doubles title as a freshman with his brother Phillip in 2008, he went on to win two straight Division II singles titles in 2010 and 2011. Diaz didn’t lose a single match after his sophomore year en route to being named the No. 1 player in his class in the state of Ohio. His last loss in high school, though, was in the state doubles championship to Metka and Kilbourne in ’09.“I’ve joked with him once or twice about it,” Metka said about defeating Diaz at state championships. “Totally joking, say ‘Remember what the score was back (in ’09)?’”The trio dominated Ohio high school tennis from 2007-12, winning a combined seven titles before enrolling at OSU.The time they put in on court leads to a friendship that has only grown stronger since becoming teammates.“We knew each other pretty well growing up,” Diaz said. “Playing a lot of the same tournaments, we already had that relationship. And being Columbus kids, you kind of stick together. It’s pretty cool.”Having three stars just outside of campus was luxury for OSU coach Ty Tucker, providing him with a chance to always be working with them to make them better players.“In an individual sport, you get unlimited practice time in the summer months,” Tucker said. “To be able to be from Columbus and be able to see your family on weekends … it certainly makes it that much easier to play in a year-round program.”The opportunity to fine-tune their game was a great opportunity because OSU is nationally ranked in the top 5 consistently. That success demands the best of the best.The three came in and each redshirted their first year to help better prepare for the high level of competition they were going to play.Now the time and work they’ve put in has paid huge dividends, as they are each key members in the six-man rotation the Buckeyes have used all season.“They’re all very good players,” Tucker said. “The nice things is they could’ve gone to other programs and started four straight years, and they wanted to come to Ohio State for a chance to get better.”The friendship Metka, Diaz and Kobelt had already formed helped the team come together as a whole, as they began the season ranked No. 5, since moving up to the top spot in the rankings.“I think it unites the team,” Kobelt said of their relationship. “It makes it easier for the Europeans to come over … it’s a more relaxed setting, people are more comfortable with what’s going on. I think, overall, it helps having guys from your own state play for your team.”Voted captain at the beginning of the season and playing first singles every match, Kobelt’s development allowed him to grow into the team’s leader. He is currently ranked seventh in the nation and has a chance to earn a NCAA Singles Championship.Metka is best known for his prowess in doubles and he and Kobelt team up to form the third ranked doubles team in the nation. He also cracked the top 125 rankings in singles for the first time in his collegiate career April 8.Diaz has been holding steady at third singles for the Buckeyes where he is known to frustrate opponents with a never-give-up attitude, returning almost every shot that comes his way.Already having won 187 straight home matches, with half of the starters being from Columbus, it provides fans with a little extra incentive to watch the Buckeyes continue their reign of terror in the city.“I think it helps with the fan base,” Kobelt said. “When they see a lot of guys from Ohio, they want to come out and watch and cheer for us more.”The fans that have been paying attention have been provided a treat.After clinching at least a share of the Big Ten with a 4-3 win at Purdue Sunday, Kobelt, Metka and Diaz have combined for 12 Big Ten titles and have not lost a single regular season match in Big Ten play.This season they have already won the ITA Indoor National Championship and broke the NCAA All-Time home win streak in what really has been a dream season so far for them. Winning at their dream school makes it even more special for them, though.“I think all three of us can agree that we all take pride in being from Columbus,” Metka said. “We’ve all been Buckeye fans since we were young … I think it helps push us.”The trio is set to continue their journey Friday as OSU is scheduled to take on Iowa at home. First serve is set for 6 p.m.
Members of OSU women’s volleyball team celebrate after a point during a match against Nebraska on Oct. 14 at St. John Arena. Credit: Jenna Leinasars | Former Assistant News DirectorThe Ohio State women’s volleyball team was meant to compete in the Coastal Carolina Classic in Conway, South Carolina, this weekend. However, the tournament has been cancelled due to severe weather warnings of Hurricane Irma which may affect the area over the weekend.Ohio State will instead be hosting Notre Dame on Friday at 7 p.m., who will then host the Buckeyes on Sunday at 1 p.m., due to Hurricane Irma threats in South Carolina.The Buckeyes and Fighting Irish were two of the four teams scheduled to take part in the South Carolina tournament. Florida International and Coastal Carolina, the host, were the other two teams in the tournament.Although admission to both matches will be free, Ohio State will be collecting cash donations at Friday night’s game for the Red Cross hurricane relief fund.