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#pounditTuesday, November 29, 2022

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49ers get brutal news on Elijah Mitchell injury

Elijah Mitchell in a helmet

Jan 2, 2022; Santa Clara, California, USA; San Francisco 49ers running back Eli Mitchell (25) during warm ups against the Houston Texans at Levi’s Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

The San Francisco 49ers just got running back Elijah Mitchell back from a long-term injury, only for him to suffer another one.

49ers coach Kyle Shanahan revealed Monday that Mitchell suffered another MCL sprain similar to the one he dealt with earlier in the season. The injury is expected to keep him out another six-to-eight weeks.

This is almost identical to what happened to Mitchell earlier in the season. Sunday’s game was only Mitchell’s third since suffering that initial injury, and he had maintained a steady role in the team’s offense despite the arrival of Christian McCaffrey in a trade.

Mitchell’s injury effectively ends his regular season, so the Niners will have to lean heavily on McCaffrey going forward. His injury history is a worry, but he has so far looked up to the task.

Massive bet comes in on Pac-12 Championship Game

Lincoln Riley with USC

Apr 23, 2022; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Southern California Trojans coach Lincoln Riley during the spring game at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

USC will have a chance in the Pac-12 Championship Game to avenge its only loss of the season, and at least one gambler is extremely confident the Trojans are going to do just that.

A Nevada bettor has placed a massive wager on USC to defeat Utah in the Pac-12 Championship Game, which will be played at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas on Friday. According to Max Meyer of Caesar’s Sportsbook, the gambler has risked $901,350.65 on the USC moneyline at -130 odds. If USC defeats Utah, he will win $693,346.65. The wager is the single biggest football bet of the season.

USC is expected to be ranked No. 4 when the newest College Football Playoff rankings are released on Tuesday. The Trojans are coming off a convincing 38-27 win over No. 15 Notre Dame. Ohio State will fall out of the top four after being blown out by Michigan at home.

Kirk Herbstreit recently talked about a potential “Armageddon” scenario that could unfold in the College Football Playoff, but the person who bet just shy of $1 million on USC beating Utah does not see that happening.

H/T Big Daddy

Jets close to breaking 1 interesting drought?

Robert Saleh talks with the media

Jul 27, 2021; Florham Park, NJ, United States; New York Jets head coach Robert Saleh talks with the media on training camp report day at Atlantic Health Jets Training Center. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

The primetime New York Jets may finally be back on the menu.

Gregg Rosenthal of NFL Network reports this week that the Kansas City Chiefs-Denver Broncos game scheduled for Week 14 will likely be flexed out of NBC’s “Sunday Night Football” slot. Rosenthal further notes that the Jets, who have not played on “SNF” since 2011, face the Buffalo Bills that week.

Considering that the Chiefs have already played on “SNF” three times this season and that the Broncos are … well, a lousy football team right now, the move by NBC would make sense. The Bills are a marquee team themselves, and the drama of facing the Jets, their in-state division rivals, will certainly make for juicy television.

The Jets also deserve their moment in the spotlight by their own merits. Coming off a dominating 31-10 win over the Chicago Bears on Sunday, the Jets are now a fairly stunning 7-4 this season (after they won a total of six games over the last two seasons combined). Yes, quarterback Zach Wilson was recently benched amid much drama. But the new starter Mike White has the Jets humming along quite nicely right now.

Miguel Cabrera makes notable announcement about future plans

Miguel Cabrera in the dugout

Mar 30, 2022; Clearwater, Florida, USA; Detroit Tigers first baseman Miguel Cabrera (24) looks on from the dugout in the second inning against the Philadelphia Phillies during spring training at BayCare Ballpark. Mandatory Credit: Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

Miguel Cabrera confirmed what had been widely speculated for months on Monday: the 2023 season will almost certainly be his last.

Cabrera confirmed prior to his charity gala this week that he plans to step away from the game after 21 seasons when his contract with the Detroit Tigers expires at the end of 2023.

“I think it’s going to be my last year. It feels a little weird to say that,” Cabrera told MLB.com’s Christina De Nicola. “I thought, I’m not going to say ‘never’, but I think it’s time to say goodbye to baseball.”

Cabrera turns 40 in April and is entering the final year of the huge megadeal he signed with Detroit in 2014. He had said all along that he intended to play in 2023 and then call it a career, and this clearly demonstrates that his view on that has not shifted.

Cabrera hit just .254 last season and has battled health issues for the past several years, but he remains a future Hall of Famer. He has hinted at sticking around the game after retiring, so this may not be the last we see of him.

Broncos’ Mike Purcell answers whether locker room is divided

Mike Purcell Russell Wilson

Denver Broncos defensive lineman Mike Purcell appeared to angrily confront Russell Wilson during Sunday’s loss to the Carolina Panthers, which has led to more questions about whether the team’s locker room is divided. Purcell offered his take after the game.

Purcell shouted something at Wilson as he was walking off the field following one Denver’s defensive stops on Sunday. His body language made it seem like he was not happy with the quarterback (video here). Following the Broncos’ 23-10 loss, Purcell was asked if there is division in the locker room between offensive players and defensive players.

“We’ve got no choice but to be together. We’re all in this together and that’s the bottom line,” Purcell said.

That is not exactly a ringing endorsement of Wilson or Denver’s offense, but Purcell clearly had no interest in throwing his teammates under the bus.

Wilson was asked about Purcell shouting at him, and he insisted there is “no animosity there at all. Wilson said Purcell was just telling him the team had to pick things up, and the quarterback agreed.

The Broncos have had one of the best defenses in the NFL all season. Their offense, which is now averaging just 14.3 points per game, remains the worst in the NFL.

Wilson insisted a month ago that there was no division in Denver’s locker room. Even if that is true, it would only be human nature for players on one of the league’s best defenses to be frustrated that their team’s offense is so terrible.

Report: YES pursuing 2 huge names for Yankee broadcasts

Derek Jeter smiling

Oct 3, 2017; Miami, FL, USA; Miami Marlins chief executive officer Derek Jeter addresses the media at Marlins Park. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

YES Network, the New York Yankees’ television network, is eyeing some huge additions for the 2023 season.

YES has internally discussed attempting to lure Derek Jeter and Don Mattingly to its Yankee coverage, according to Andrew Marchand of the New York Post. Mattingly appears to be seen as the more promising candidate, as network executives are sceptical that Jeter will be interested.

Mattingly is available after departing the Miami Marlins following seven seasons as manager. He told Marchand that he had not heard anything about a broadcasting offer and had “something else burning fairly hot right now.”

Jeter would certainly be the marquee name. However, it is easy to see why he would be seen as unlikely. The Yankee legend has shown no interest in broadcasting since retiring, though much of that period was admittedly occupied by his role as Marlins president. He did make one move that surprised fans earlier this year, so maybe there is a slim chance.

Video: Draymond Green had disrespectful moment on Rudy Gobert during game

Draymond Green on the court

May 24, 2022; Dallas, Texas, USA; Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green (23) reacts after a play against the Dallas Mavericks during the first quarter in game four of the 2022 Western Conference finals at American Airlines Center. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Draymond Green’s hatred for Rudy Gobert continues to burn with the intensity of a thousand suns.

The Golden State Warriors star Green went viral for a disrespectful moment on his Minnesota Timberwolves counterpart Gobert during Sunday’s game. Courtside video caught Green, in the middle of a Golden State fast break, staying behind to laugh at Gobert, who had just fallen to the floor.

Take a look.

Green was also probably laughing after the game as well. The Warriors blew out the Timberwolves on Minnesota’s own home floor, winning by a 137-114 final. Green finished with 19 points (a season-high for him) and 11 assists while Gobert had a quiet nine points and ten rebounds.

There is some major beef history between Green and Gobert, which provides the necessary context for the above video. Green has taken several seemingly umprompted shots at Gobert in recent years. But when Green had his big scandal over the offseason, it was Gobert’s turn to mock him.

Protestor with Pride flag interrupts World Cup match

Protestor holds a flag

A protestor carrying a Pride flag and promoting other messages interrupted a World Cup match in Qatar on Monday.

The protestor invaded the pitch during the Gruop H match between Portugal and Uruguay.

A separate video showed the streaker get taken down by security.

Beyond the flag, the protestor had a shirt that said “Save Ukraine” on the front and “respect for Iranian women” on the back.

While such an act wouldn’t cause much attention in the United States, it’s a much bigger deal in Qatar. In Qatar, sexual acts of male homosexuality are illegal, and same-sex marriages are not recognized by the government. Acts promoting homosexuality are treated differently in Qatar compared to the U.S.

Big Ten announces discipline for Michigan State over tunnel incident

Mel Tucker in a green shirt

Sep 3, 2021; Evanston, Illinois, USA; Michigan State Spartans head coach Mel Tucker walks on the field during warmups before the game against the Northwestern Wildcats at Ryan Field. Mandatory Credit: Jon Durr-USA TODAY Sports

The Big Ten on Monday announced discipline against Michigan State over the postgame tunnel incident against Michigan on Oct. 29.

In a statement, the league announced that cornerback Khary Crump would be suspended for the first eight games of the 2023 season on top of the four-game suspension he has already served. All of Michigan State’s other player suspensions were deemed sufficient, but the university was fined $100,000 over the incident.

This represents the largest fine the conference has handed out, surpassing the one given to Michigan’s Juwan Howard in February.

Michigan was publicly reprimanded for failing to provide adequate protection for personnel of both home and visiting teams while entering or leaving the field of play, but no other Michigan players or officials were sanctioned.

All of the discipline stems from a postgame fight following Michigan’s home win in late October, when multiple Spartan players were seen attacking Michigan players in the tunnel. Seven players are facing criminal charges over their roles in the incident.

Melvin Gordon lands on rival team’s practice squad

Melvin Gordon on the field

Feb 16, 2020; Carson, California, USA; Los Angeles Chargers running back Melvin Gordon (left) and Los Angeles Rams running back Todd Burley attend the XFL game between the LA Wildcats and the Dallas Renegades Dignity Health Sports Park. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Denver Broncos cut Melvin Gordon last week, and he already has a new home.

NFL Media’s Tom Pelissero says Gordon is expected to sign with the Kansas City Chiefs’ practice squad. From there, Pelissero expects Gordon to be elevated to the active roster soon.

Gordon was cut by the Broncos after fumbling five times this season. He was only averaging 3.5 yards per carry in their disappointing offense. The 29-year-old cleared waivers after being let go by Denver.

The Chiefs have Isiah Pacheco handling lead back duties. Clyde Edwards-Helaire is on injured reserve, so Jerick McKinnon and Ronald Jones shared backup duties in the Week 12 win over the Rams. Gordon would likely be battling McKinnon and Jones for work behind Pacheco.

Interestingly, the 9-2 Chiefs still have two games remaining against the Broncos (in Weeks 14 and 17).