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Saturday, January 19, 2019

Stories by Larry Brown:

Ex-Texas QB Cameron Rising announces transfer to Utah

Utah Utes

Texas’ loss is Utah’s gain.

Quarterback Cameron Rising announced on Twitter Thursday that he is transferring to Utah.

Rising and fellow freshman quarterback Casey Thompson were buried on Texas’ depth chart behind Sam Ehlinger and Shane Buechele. Things suddenly cleared up when Rising, Thompson and then Buechele expressed interest in transferring. None of them want to sit behind Ehlinger, who has solidified himself as the Longhorns’ quarterbacks and has two years of eligibility left.

Utah finished 9-5 last season. They have dual-threat QB Tyler Huntley returning for his senior season. Huntley was having a good season until breaking his collarbone. Jason Shelley took over after that and the team went 3-2 in games he started.

Rising was a four-star QB coming out of Newbury Park High School (Calif.) and had offers from Oklahoma and Alabama and many others but chose Texas.

Chargers want to talk contract extension with Philip Rivers

Philip Rivers

Philip Rivers’ contract expires after next season, and the Los Angeles Chargers want to change that.

Chargers GM Tom Telesco said on Thursday that the team is ready to talk about a contract extension with their franchise quarterback.

“I can tell you he’s not going anywhere, so he’s going to be here,” Telesco said Thursday, via ESPN’s Eric Williams. “We’ll talk at the right point, as far as the moves we need to make in the offseason, the resources we have and how it all fits in. But yeah, he’s not going anywhere.”

Rivers may be 37 years old, but he’s coming off one of the best seasons of his career. The Chargers went 12-4 and were eliminated in the playoffs by the Patriots after having to travel to New England due to the NFL’s playoff seeding rules. Rivers completed 68.3 percent of his passes for 4,308 yards, 32 touchdowns and just 12 interceptions.

Along with quarterbacks like Tom Brady and Drew Brees, Rivers seems to be playing excellent football even as he ages. There is no reason the Chargers shouldn’t want to keep him around for much longer.

Dan Enos defends himself against report he ditched Alabama without warning

Dan Enos

Dan Enos sent a tweet on Thursday to defend himself against a report saying he ditched Alabama without warning.

Enos served as Alabama’s quarterbacks coach last season and was seemingly in line to become the offensive coordinator replacement for Mike Locksley, who had already accepted Maryland’s head coaching job. Then Enos left to take a job as Miami’s offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach under Manny Diaz.

According to a report from The Athletic’s Bruce Feldman, Enos cleared out his stuff seemingly in the middle of the night and left without notice. Nick Saban didn’t learn of Enos’ departure until the coach did not report to the first staff meeting after the loss to Clemson in the championship game.

Enos sent a tweet disputing the report. He says he would never leave without notice and that he moved on because it was time for him.

Enos’ decision to leave is surprising because he seemed to be set for a promotion within the staff. But like he said, he felt it was time to move on. He might have some work to do to repair his relationship with Saban after this.

Giants reportedly in trade mix for Sonny Gray

Sonny Gray

The New York Yankees are looking to trade Sonny Gray, and a new suitor in the market has emerged.

According to FanCred’s Jon Heyman, the San Francisco Giants are interested in trading for the pitcher.

Gray, 29, agreed to a $7.5 million salary for 2019 with the New York Yankees. The Bronx Bombers acquired him in a trade in 2017, but he has not performed well for them. Still, plenty of teams believe he can get back to his Oakland A’s form if he finds a new team.

Gray went 44-36 with a 3.42 ERA in parts of five seasons for the A’s. He was 15-16 with a 4.51 ERA in his two seasons with the Yankees.

Seahawks sign former 1st-round pick Paxton Lynch

Paxton Lynch

Paxton Lynch has found a new NFL team.

The former Denver Broncos first-round is being signed to a future/reserve contract by the Seattle Seahawks, as reported by Seattle radio station KJR.

Lynch did not finish the season on an NFL roster after being cut by the Broncos in September. He will be part of the Seahawks’ roster when the new league year begins in March, though that won’t guarantee he’ll make their final roster for next season.

Seattle has Brett Hundley behind Russell Wilson on their depth chart.

Watch: Wizards beat Knicks on goaltending call in final second

Washington Wizards logo

The Washington Wizards took on the New York Knicks in London on Thursday and won thanks to a goaltending call just before the buzzer.

Washington was down 100-99 with three seconds left and ran an inbounds play. The ball went to Bradley Beal, who passed to Thomas Bryant for a layup. Allonzo Trier leaped to block the shot and was called for goaltending.

That’s probably not the way fans in London wanted to see a game decided, but it worked for the Wizards. They won 101-100.

Washington has been playing much better lately and is 6-3 over their past nine games.

Wade Phillips cracks funny joke about Sean McVay copycat hires

Wade Phillips Broncos

Wade Phillips showed off his typical sense of humor when speaking with the media on Thursday.

Phillips’ Los Angeles Rams are preparing for Sunday’s NFC Championship Game against the New Orleans Saints. Phillips was asked by ESPN’s Lindsey Thiry what made him want to join Sean McVay’s staff. He answered that his son, Wes, worked with McVay in Washington and convinced him. That led to the joke.

Owing to the success McVay has had turning around the Rams, teams have been eager to hire anyone connected to his offense. The Cincinnati Bengals plan to hire his quarterbacks coach Zac Taylor as their head coach. The Green Bay Packers hired his former offensive coordinator Matt LaFleur as their head coach. And the Arizona Cardinals went with a young offensive mind in Kliff Kingsbury as their head coach. Maybe Wes Phillips will be next.

Tim Tebow invited to Mets’ major league spring training

Tim Tebow Mets

Tim Tebow will have a chance to show what he can do against big leaguers in spring training.

The New York Mets announced on Thursday that they have invited 13 minor leaguers to their Major League spring training. Tebow is part of that group.

Tebow is entering his third season in pro ball. He played 84 games with Double-A Binghampton last season and batted .273 with a .735 OPS. Though his numbers are more than respectable, especially for a player who hadn’t played baseball in around a decade, they’re not the kind of numbers that scream MLB prospect.

Still, Tebow is a former client of new Mets GM Brodie Van Wagenen, who has said that Tebow making the MLB roster is a possibility.