Crowdsourcing, the act of contracting out problems to large groups rather than tapping individual experts, has solved puzzles in fields such as marketing, engineering, and computer software. But can the wisdom of crowds help cure disease?A large, multidisciplinary panel has recently selected 12 pioneering ideas for attacking type 1 diabetes, ideas selected through a crowdsourcing experiment called the “Challenge,” in which all members of the Harvard community, as well as members of the general public, were invited to answer the question: What do we not know to cure type 1 diabetes?“We wanted to ask the entire Harvard community — faculty, students, and administrators and staff of all levels and specialties — to share their ‘out of the box’ questions and proposals for this challenge, regardless of whether they had the expertise or resources to answer the question,” said Harvard Catalyst Director and Harvard Medical School (HMS) Dean for Clinical and Translational Research Lee Nadler. “We wanted the participants to apply their insights to a problem that may not have been in their academic or intellectual domain.”Among the authors of the winning ideas are a patient, an undergraduate student, an M.D./Ph.D. student, a human resources representative, and researchers who are not experts in the field.Out of 190 entries, 12 were chosen. Each of the winners, who were formally announced in a ceremony held at Harvard Medical School on Sept. 28, will receive a prize of $2,500. Working with the Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust, Harvard Catalyst plans to solicit research proposals from within the Harvard research community on some or all or the winning questions.In a letter to the Harvard University community at the Challenge’s launch in February, Harvard President Drew Faust expressed her hope that “such broad outreach will help stimulate innovative thinking and potential new understandings and therapies,” wishing that “in the spirit of this novel project, we will continue to multiply the means to connect the remarkable people and ideas across Harvard in imaginative and powerful ways.”Apart from the potentially revolutionary submissions from the community, the Challenge, in which Harvard collaborated with InnoCentive, provides evidence that finding new and innovative ideas for tackling disease is itself an act of innovation. “The Challenge was an exercise in tapping the knowledge of the widest possible community and encouraging the formation of new teams and new forms of collaboration around a specific topic area,” said Dana-Farber Cancer Institute’s Eva Guinan, director of the Harvard Catalyst Linkages program and one of the Challenge’s co-leaders.According to research by Challenge co-leader Karim Lakhani, an assistant professor at Harvard Business School, innovation contests like this one can help reveal and foster unexpected and novel solutions to vexing scientific problems. “Open innovation is an effective way to solve scientific problems in the business world.”The Challenge was part of an American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA)-funded effort by Harvard Catalyst and InnoCentive to investigate whether new approaches employed in the private sector for sparking new research directions and collaborations might be useful in the academic health care community.The winners and their ideas Anonymous: The Diabetes Triangle: A Systematic Approach to Align Diabetes Classification with Diabetes Management A new way of looking at diabetes by the numbers. Is there a better way of classifying diabetes than “type 1” and “type 2?” This winner, a patient with an uncommon form of diabetes and who wished to remain anonymous, thinks there is: A new scale — the Diabetes Triangle — that would use three simple measures to classify diabetes in a much more fine-grained, personalized way. This easy-to-use scale would help patients, and their doctors, better understand their disease and the steps they need to take to control it.Megan Blewett: Lipid Autoreactivity in Type 1 Diabetes: Clue to Etiology, Co-occurrence, and Drug Discovery Diabetes Chemistry 101. Even though diabetes medications are essentially chemicals, we don’t know much about the chemistry underlying the development of diabetes. Harvard College undergraduate chemistry major Blewett suggests that studying diabetes — and in particular how, in the context of diabetes, the immune system interacts with molecules called lipids — from a chemical perspective could yield new insights into the diabetic process and new strategies for treatment.“I first heard about the Challenge through the campuswide email sent by President Faust,” said Blewett ’11. “I was drawn to the fact that the challenge promised to create a dialogue spanning scientific disciplines and based on the merit of people’s ideas. Opportunities like this are extremely rare.Kevin Dolan: Type 1 Diabetes, Patient Maintenance and Care Keeping a constant eye on blood sugar. The current crop of implanted insulin pumps do their job by keeping constant track of the amount of glucose in the fluids that bathe our cells, a kind of proxy method for tracking blood sugar. Dolan, who works in Human Resources at HMS and who has type 1 diabetes, suggests that a new generation of pumps that sample blood sugar directly could help improve patients’ quality of life and blood sugar control, consequently bringing overall health care costs down.“Type 1 diabetes is a complicated disease that requires one to be thinking constantly about what he/she eats, what his/her exercise level has been or needs to be, what his/her blood sugar level is at, and knowing if it rising or falling,” said Dolan. “Despite all that, it is not a disease that prevents someone from being successful in whatever endeavor they choose to pursue. I felt providing the perspective to Challenge of someone who deals with type 1 diabetes on a daily basis would help researchers as they pursue improved diabetes care management and eventually a cure.”Mark Feinberg: Synergistic System Targeting for Type I Diabetes Taking a multipronged approach. Which is better: to treat the root causes of diabetes from one direction at a time, or from multiple directions at once? Feinberg favors the latter. He suggests that a better understanding of how different parts of the immune system affect the pancreas in diabetes would allow for the development of tools capable of targeting those parts simultaneously.“I had two recent ‘jolts’ that motivated me to take part in the contest,” said Feinberg, a cardiologist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. “First, I recently had a patient with long-standing type 1 diabetes who, despite his and his doctors’ best efforts, was suffering the end-stage effects of his disease. The second was the news that a very young family member of mine had just been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. This prompted me to think about my own research endeavors and whether some of the things I’ve been studying could be applicable to this disease.”David Friedman: A Quiet Role for Platelets and Eosinophils in Pathogenesis of Type 1 Diabetes?Roles for other immune cells in diabetes? The discussion about immunity in type 1 diabetes usually focuses on T cells. But the immune system has many, many more components. Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center nephrologist Friedman wants to know whether these other parts, including, for example, cells and proteins involved in the body’s response to allergens and parasites, might also play roles in the development of diabetes.“In thinking about the Challenge, I wanted to connect immunity and autoimmunity through the lens of genetics,” Friedman explained. “These are ideas that would generally be considered too speculative for funding through typical channels.”Jason Gaglia: In-depth Analysis of T Cell Repertoire During the Development of Type 1 Diabetes in Pancreatic Islet Infiltrating and Peripheral CD4 T Cells The T cell as a window on diabetes development. What can immune system T cells tell us about the origins of diabetes? Gaglia, an endocrinologist in the Pathology Department at HMS, suggests quite a bit. He proposes using T cells in the blood as a view into what’s going on in the pancreas of patients with diabetes. This approach could help lead to new, targeted treatments, or to ways of measuring whether treatments are working.“The Challenge gave me an opportunity to think globally about approaches to diabetes, as opposed to the niche my research has focused on,” Gaglia commented. “It has helped me explore aspects of my field and related fields that are removed from my current research.Danwei Huangfu: A Cell-Electronic Approach to Insulin Therapy Merging biology and engineering. Where should we look for the next generation of blood sugar monitors? Our own bodies. Eons of evolution have fine-tuned our beta cells to sense blood sugar levels and secrete insulin accordingly, in precisely the right amounts. Huangfu, a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University, proposes linking beta cells of the pancreas to an electronic insulin pump, establishing a new paradigm for diabetes control.“I am preparing to start my own laboratory, and looked at the Challenge as an opportunity to identify novel research directions,” said Huangfu. “But I realized that my own research had become more focused on the cells destroyed by diabetes than on the disease itself. Thinking through my submission has, in the end, made me more conscious of Type 1 diabetes as a disease.”Carlos Mendivil Anaya: Integral Treatment of Type 1 Diabetes Using Smart Liposomes Make “smart” treatments for diabetes. The current methods of taking diabetes medications — by mouth or by injection — allow these drugs to spread throughout the body. Mendivil Anaya, an endocrinologist from Colombia in a doctoral program at the Harvard School of Public Health, suggests using microscopic spheres (called “smart liposomes”) studded with proteins that can dial down the immune attack against the beta cells in people with type 1 diabetes to carry drugs directly to the pancreas, giving them extra targeted punch.“I have seen the trials and tribulations of many type 1 diabetes patients as they moved from childhood into adolescence and adult life,” said Mendivil Anaya. “This has made the human face of diabetes very familiar and very close to my heart.”Matthew Meyerson, Sally Kent, David Hafler, Joonil Jung, Alex Kostic, and Akinyemi I. Ojesina: Hunting for Microbial Genomes in Type 1 Diabetes by Next-Generation Sequencing A germ theory for diabetes. Viruses like to leave little bits of genetic baggage behind. This team of researchers from the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, the University of Massachusetts Medical Center, and Yale School of Medicine sought to find out whether viruses or other microbes might play some part in triggering diabetes by looking for signs of this baggage in the genes of people with diabetes.James Mulvihill: Development of a Noninvasive Blood Glucose Monitor Measuring blood sugar without the blood. For patients with diabetes, keeping close track of their blood sugar means a lifetime of painful needle pricks or an implanted glucose pump. Mulvihill, a former president and CEO of both The Forsyth Institute and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, wants to know whether it’s possible to develop a blood glucose sensor that works without actually having to break the skin.“My motivation to respond to the challenge came from my knowledge of what an important advance it would be in the care of individuals of all ages with both type 1 and type 2 diabetes, if a reliable methodology to monitor blood glucose noninvasively could be developed,” Mulvihill said. “My knowledge comes from having a child who 20 years ago was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, as well as meeting thousands of individuals with type 1 diabetes and their families.”Dirk Moore: Family-based Association Studies to Identify Gene-Environment Interaction and Genomic Imprinting in Type 1 Diabetes (T1D) Probing the “nature vs. nurture” question. How do genes and environment mix in the development of diabetes? A biostatistician at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, Moore believes that by re-analyzing genetic studies using new statistical techniques, it may be possible to tease apart their relative roles in ways that lead to better tools for controlling or preventing diabetes.“I have taken part in InnoCentive challenges in the past,” said Moore, “and when I saw the Challenge posting, I realized that some of the family-based population study designs that I have worked with in other fields could be applicable to important questions in type I diabetes.”Srinivas Viswanathan: Post-Gastric Bypass Nesidioblastosis as a Model for Understanding Beta-Islet Cell Neogenesis Turning up the volume on beta cell replacement. Why do beta cells undergo an explosive period of growth in the wake of gastric bypass surgery? We don’t know, but Harvard M.D./Ph.D. student Viswanathan thinks this phenomenon could provide new insights into ways of replacing lost beta cells in patients with type 1 diabetes.“I’d not considered doing any work on diabetes before, but happened to be on my surgery rotation at the time the challenge was announced, and at the time I had contact with many patients who had undergone gastric bypass procedures,” said Viswanathan. “I was intrigued by the observation that many of these patients were no longer diabetic after having the surgery, and read about this phenomenon wherein gastric bypass surgery could alter the pancreas’s insulin-producing capacity.”
Back from a long break necessitated by the 2014 FIFA World Cup Finals in Brazil, Africa’s Premier and Division One Beach Soccer leagues have resumed at the La Beach Soccer Arena in the Ghanaian capital Accra. The 8 weeks lull was expected to turn things around for a number of teams and defending champions Sunset made most of their preparations with a comfortable 3-0 victory over glamour club East Legon Sharks. The Volta boys played a tactically superior game by scoring a goal in each of the three sessions of the game to seal their three points. La-Yoca versus Dansoman was a fiercely contested Accra derby with the DC team holding their nerves when it mattered most to claim the three points. La Yoca scored first through Abdallah Michael before being pegged back with two quick goals from Dansoman. The La based club wrestled back the advantage, taking a 3-2 lead into the final quarter of the game to set up a nerve wracking finish. Dansoman were to have the last laugh thanks to hero Mathew Lamptey who popped up with two perfectly crafted goals to hand Dansoman the three points as it ended 4-3 at the death. Newly promoted Nima BSC continue their resurgence after a shaky baptism of fire at the start of the season.In a six-goal thriller, they matched Teshie United stride for stride picking up their first point in the top flight of the Ghana beach soccer league. A spirited display with a brace from Adapesah Sampson and a goal from Alhassan Sadat rescued a point for them against the slick Teshie team who dominated for greater parts of the game. The current league leaders from Keta maintained their good run without kicking a ball at the La Beach Soccer Arena.Havedzi Mighty Warriors were pumped up and ready for opponents Ada Assurance but the latter failed to turn up.A potential suspension looms for Ada whose CEO ironically sat and watched the other games from the sides. In another interesting development, two time goal king, Richard Osa finally broke his 6 week scoring drought with a brace to aid his Wuo Gbee side dispatch Gulf powers 4-3. In the big game of Division One, African Angels conjured a huge upset, by defeating leaders Golden Eagles 5-4. The end to end action and three precious points for the Angels has thrown the race for promotion in that division wide open.
MARCH MADNESS: Interactive and printable bracketsThe most eye-popping stat2: Wisconsin’s Ethan Happ is one of two players in the NCAA tournament to record more than one triple-double in 2018-19. The only other player to do so was Murray State’s Ja Morant. Happ, a 6-10 forward, is averaging 17.5 points, 10.1 rebounds and 4.6 assists this season. He could be poised for some big numbers if his team continues to lean on his production.The most overrated seedNo. 6. Villanova: The Wildcats finished the season 25-9 and ranked 25th in the country by the Associated Press. Villanova was a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament last year and beat Michigan in the championship. But it lost five games to opponents that finished outside of the top 25 in 2018-19. The Wildcats may have secured a Big East title in 2019, but they narrowly edged No. 10 Seton Hall. Villanova has been inconsistent this season, and it could be challenged in the first round by No. 11 St. Mary’s.MORE REGION PREVIEWS: East | West | MidwestThe most dangerous sleeperNo. 5 Wisconsin: Ranking fifth in a region wouldn’t make most consider a team to be a sleeper. But the Badgers are just that. Wisconsin hung close with tough opponents all season. It has already gotten a taste of Virginia, losing to the Cavaliers by seven in Charlottesville, which is no small feat. Forward Ethan Happ is one of the best bigs in the country, so solid performances from him could help the Badgers make an unexpected run in March.The first-round upset alertNo. 13 UC Irvine: The Anteaters’ 30-5 record is nothing to scoff at. UC Irvine routinely handled the Big West Conference this season. While it will face No. 4 Kansas State in the first round, the Wildcats could be without their centerpiece Dean Wade, who is recovering from a lingering right foot injury. The Anteaters are one of the better rebounding teams in the country, and Wade is Kansas State’s top rebounder.SN’S MARCH MADNESS HQ:Predictor tool | Best bracket names | TicketsThe Final Four pickNo. 1 Virginia: The Cavaliers are far and away the best all-around team in the South region. They have two of college basketball’s best guards in Ty Jerome and Kyle Guy, a projected 2019 lottery pick in De’Andre Hunter, an elite team defense and efficiency from 3-point range. Barring any total meltdowns or serious injuries, Virginia should come out of this group to reach the Final Four. March Madness features from Sporting News”40 Minutes of Hell” to Hog Heaven : Nolan Richardson’s 1993-94 Arkansas team will go down as one of the most fun SEC title-winning teams of all time. It was something he built, one minute at a time.A barrier-breaking title : The 1961-62 Cincinnati Bearcats made history when they started four black players in their NCAA title game win over Ohio State. We remember the importance of that groundbreaking win.An Oral History of Steph Curry’s 2008 Breakout : In 2008, a little-known, baby-faced guard from Davidson completely took over the NCAA Tournament.Upset City : Reliving the wildest opening venue in NCAA Tournament history.The Fagan Jinx : They’re not just upset “alerts” when Sporting News’ Ryan Fagan is in attendance. Recapping the many improbable upsets Fagan has been on hand to witness. More than a timeout : The 1993 NCAA Tournament is more than Chris Webber’s ill-fated timeout in the national championship game against UNC. Danny and the Miracles : Recalling Kansas’ improbable 1988 title run.Chalmers’ shot still resonates : Mario Chalmers never gets tired talking about his 3-pointer against Memphis in 2008.DeCourcy’s best of 30 years : Sporting News’ Mike DeCourcy ranks the best games he has witnessed from 30 years’ worth of NCAA Tournament coverage. The thrill of victory… : Sporting News staff recall their favorite memories of the NCAA Tournament. Virginia has secured a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament. Despite losing to Florida State in the ACC Tournament semifinals, the Cavaliers managed to land the top spot in the South Region. Virginia is set to face No. 16 Gardner-Webb from the Big South Conference in the first round and might not be challenged until the Sweet 16.NCAA Bracket: South regionNo. 1 Virginia’s biggest threatNo. 2 Tennessee: The Volunteers were considered to be the top team in the nation for a time, but lost that distinction after Kentucky snapped their 19-game winning streak on Feb. 16. Tennessee secured quality wins against quality ranked opponents like Gonzaga. It also managed to beat Kentucky twice, but fell short to Auburn twice in its last four games. Its latest defeat was a 20-point loss to the Tigers in the SEC Tournament championship. Virginia and Tennessee did not meet during the regular season, but both play smart basketball and are top five in the country in assist-to-turnover ratio. The Volunteers are among the nation’s leaders in team field goal percentage (49.9), so the Cavaliers’ defensive prowess will need to be at its best if the No. 1 and No. 2 seeds face off. …And the agony of defeat : Sporting News staff recalls their most heartbreaking memories from the NCAA Tournament. Get your tissues ready.Top 80 upsets in March Madness history : It’s not March Madness until there’s an upset. Ranking the best we ever saw:Best buzzer-beaters in NCAA Tournament history : The defining shots of the NCAA Tournament, and the reason it’s dubbed “March Madness.”
Facebook5Tweet0Pin0Submitted by Washington State Department of TransportationTravelers should prepare for potential daytime delays on northbound Interstate 5 in Lacey.From 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday, October 29-30, the left lane of northbound I-5 approaching milepost 109 will close.The daytime lane closure will allow Washington State Department of Transportation maintenance crews will trim shrubbery away from the shoulder.This type of work must be done during daylight hours for safety reasons.Commuter toolsAdvance information about construction, maintenance and other work on state highways is available at the Thurston County construction and travel updates web page. Real time information is available on the WSDOT app and by following the WSDOT regional Twitter feed.
By John BurtonSHREWSBURY — The protracted development application to construct a convenience store and gas station on Shrewsbury Avenue continues to be opposed by a business competitor and is scheduled to return to the borough Zoning Board of Adjustment on Nov. 30.The application, presented by Shore Investment Realty, is seeking the board’s approval to construct a 5,496 square-foot QuickChek retail convenience store that will have on-site food consumption and outdoor seating for customers. The project also calls for the installation of a gas station with a 10-vehicle canopied fueling station.The project is proposed for a 6.35-acre property at 575 Shrewsbury Ave., near Apple Street, the former location of a Verizon telecommunications facility. Should the application be eventually approved, a portion of the site would continue to serve as a Verizon location for warehousing of materials, garage, staging yard and offices, according to the application’s public notice.The project would require the zoning board to grant a use “D” variance for use not permitted in the zone, as well as a number of other variances and design waivers.This application was the subject of eight previous hearings before the zoning board, beginning on Jan. 6, with the most recent occurring on Aug. 29. During those hearings the attorney representing Shore Investment has faced off against the lawyer representing the application’s primary objector, Lukoil America, a competing gasoline and fuel distributor. Lukoil operates a gas station located almost directly across from the property on Shrewsbury Avenue.The board had scheduled a special meeting on Nov. 2 to review this application. The board’s public notice published in an area newspaper was suspected of being insufficient under the state Open Public Meetings Act, requiring the meeting’s date change.The zoning board meeting starts at 7 p.m. in the borough council/municipal court chambers, 419 Sycamore Ave.
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest The ruffed grouse is one of the most prized game birds in North America and the hills of Ohio are part of its southernmost habitat range. An elusive and difficult bird to hunt due to its flighty craftiness and habitation in dense undergrowth that reduces hunter visibility and accessibility, the ruffed grouse is a real trophy for hunters in the Buckeye state. But its numbers in Ohio are drastically declining,A brown/gray-brown bird with a fan-shaped black banded tail and barred flanks, the grouse physically resembles a chicken, but the comparisons stop there. This beautiful, wary bird that prefers and needs thick, impenetrable cover — such as clear cutting regrowth — to survive, is a constantly alert master of its domain that is a revered symbol of the American forest.American author and avid bird hunter Robert DeMott, of Athens, has stalked the hills of southeastern Ohio in pursuit of grouse for nearly five decades and has harvested hundreds of the species over his hunting career. Beyond a long list of academic publications and titles, DeMott has written prolifically about bird hunting and bird dogs over the years. He edited and contributed to the book, “Afield: American Writers on Bird Dogs,” and frequently writes for upland hunting magazines such as “Gray’s Sporting Journal,” “Upland Almanac,” and “The Contemporary Wingshooter.” His writings demonstrate the author to possess a reflective, intellectual pursuit of all things wild and winged and a keen, perceptive attention to his environment, his dogs, and his quarry.In a recent discussion, DeMott shared his views on the pursuit of Ohio’s ruffed grouse and the bird’s status in the state. He said that he enjoys hunting this bird because of the challenge and difficulty that they present to even the best wingshooters.Preferring to hunt grouse accompanied by his beloved English Setters, DeMott said, “The grouse is not considered the number one game bird for nothing. Killing a grouse requires patience and determination and stamina. The success rate on grouse is extremely low. They are wily and always have some trick up their sleeves to fool the hunter or the dog. The flush is always explosive; it really gets your blood going.”This sentiment is echoed in DeMott’s article, “Early Birds,” when he writes about his appreciation of “the physical immediacy of the upland moment, with its intense points, flushes, shots.”Another aspect of grouse hunting which appeals to DeMott is the physically demanding nature of the chase.“Part of the challenge and value of the hunt is that it is very strenuous, especially down here in southern Ohio, where you will walk miles in pretty rugged terrain and on steep side hills that can twist your ankles and make for a hard hike. There were times that I’d get to a dog on point and be almost too tired to lift the gun! Because we live in such a hilly part of the state, it is better if the bird dog hunts close; if it doesn’t, you have to do a lot of trekking to get to a dog on point,” he said. “Back in the day when the grouse numbers were high, it was worth it because there was a promise of action, and with my best dogs for a couple of years, I never had a grouse flush wild. We would get into the woods at 10 and quit by three or four, and that was a pretty full day. The dogs would get a little tired and lose their edge after that.”As anyone who has hunted alongside trusted canine hunting companions for years can attest, the truest joy of upland game hunting comes from observing one’s dog in the field, doing what is in its instinctive nature and breeding to do. DeMott concurs.In “These Among Many: A Gallery of Good Fortune,” DeMott writes that “A day afield with bird dogs, even when they are acting badly and not themselves and even when birds are scarce, is still preferable to most other kinds of recreation I can name.”When interviewed, DeMott expanded on this.“The older you get, the less interested you are in bagging birds. I just enjoy watching the dogs work cover, watching them go through their moves,” he said. “They are tremendous athletes. It’s all about watching and appreciating the dog’s athletic ability, its intelligence, and its gracefulness. That is more important to me than killing birds, especially given the fact that the numbers of grouse in Ohio are so low.”Though there are pockets of grouse still to be chased in Ohio, their numbers are dwindling, which makes for some tough hunting with little to show for it these days.“I started hunting southeastern Ohio for grouse the first year I moved to Athens in 1969. I kept at it through the ‘90s. The 1970s and 1980s was the heyday for us. The height of the grouse population was in 1983 or 1984, and then it gradually subsided after that. In the ‘70s, ‘80s, and ‘90s, it was possible to find birds, but probably in the last eight or nine years, hunting for grouse has become quite fruitless around Athens, Meigs, Vinton, and Morgan counties where I hunt. People still harvest a few over the year, but it is no longer regular,” DeMott said.As DeMott notes in an essay about some of his favorite bird dogs entitled “Four Queens,” “According to the 2009 Ohio DNR survey, the range-wide flush rate for ruffed grouse in Ohio is 0.38 per hour, which is to say that something close to three hours of hunting are needed to flush the equivalent of one whole grouse. To put it another way, thirty-three hours of hunting are required for each bird bagged.”“Southeastern Ohio never had the grouse numbers as the northern tier states, but it was ample,” DeMott said. “ I always prided myself on that fact that I didn’t have to go up to Wisconsin or Michigan to grouse hunt like a lot of guys did, because I could find grouse around home. However, since 2009, I have had to take trips north to really get into birds. It is disappointing that with all of the open territory we have down here, there is not as much habitat for grouse as there once was.”DeMott said that without the fall woodcock season, when good numbers of resident and migrating timber doodles can still be found, there would be little very little game bird life in his neck of the woods for his dogs to work.“The woodcock have really taken up the slack for the dogs. Looking back through my hunting diaries, there are so many entries where I was recording flushes and harvests of both grouse and woodcock during woodcock season. Now, I am only encountering woodcock. You don’t see them mixed together as we once did, which always made for a really fine upland trip,” he said.There is far less clear cutting being done in the Appalachian foothills around Athens and that means a lot more mature forests, which is a habitat in which grouse do not thrive.Anecdotally, DeMott also thinks that the increase in wild turkeys throughout the state may contribute to the decline. Turkeys may scratch up grouse nests and maybe eat some of the same foods that grouse feed upon. Certainly, the rebound of turkeys seems to coincide with the diminishment of grouse numbers. The “National Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Birds” points out that “many areas forests are maturing, eliminating the undergrowth this species needs; where this is happening, reintroduced Wild Turkeys are increasing and grouse are decreasing.”About the future of grouse hunting in Ohio, DeMott is not optimistic. Grouse numbers are down due to habitat loss and not hunting pressure. The grouse season has been shortened by one month in the state due to the population decline and the birds continue to be few and far between.“The days are gone when we could follow multiple grouse tracks through newly fallen snow in early December or hunt some mild days in February and get into some birds. The decline in birds sure has been precipitous, and there doesn’t seem to be any rebounding,” DeMott said.Nonetheless, he holds out hope that despite the loss of habitat and disappearance of large numbers of ruffed grouse in the state, there will remain some vestiges of this regal and charming bird into future, as it adds diversity, beauty, and wonder to southern Ohio’s natural ecosystems.As DeMott tells his readership in one memoir, “Truth to tell, I can live without bringing another Buckeye state grouse to hand, but not without believing there is another bird for the dogs to find and point.”
A far cry from the glorious days when she ran the final stretch to win the women’s 4x400m gold for India, Mandeep Kaur faced one the most ignominious days of her life as she broke down with a letter of her provisional suspension in her hands on Friday.Indian athletics has plunged into a deep crisis with five athletes testing positive for banned substances. Two of the athletes who flunked the dope tests were part of the Indian women’s 4x400m team that won the gold medals at the Delhi Commonwealth Games and Guangzhou Asian Games last year.Mandeep and Sini Jose were flooded with accolades after their miraculous show at the two multi- discipline events but with the Asian Athletics Championships just round the corner, their positive dope tests have been a hammer blow for Indian athletics.Jauna Murmu at the Guangzhou Asian Games.Jauna Murmu, who finished fourth in the 400m hurdles at the Asian Games, has her name on both the lists of positive samples that were taken by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) and the National Anti-Doping Agency (NADA).Hari Krishnan (long jump), Tiana Mary Thomas (400m) and Sonia (shot put) were the other three athletes to have tested positive but none of them could not reached.Mandeep and Jauna were in the Capital on Friday at the Athletics Federation of India (AFI) office to appear for their first provisional hearing, which was conducted by an AFI panel headed by Arun Mendiratta.They will appear before the same panel on July 15. Mandeep claims she has no idea as to how the substance – methandienone – got into her body and said that the food supplements she has consumed may be responsible for the outcome.advertisementShe said she changed her vitamin supplements recently but she underwent dope tests a couple of times before the IAAF collected her sample on May 25 from National Institute of Sports (NIS) in Patiala.Mandeep Kaur at the Guangzhou Asian Games.”After the Asian Games, I got myself registered under the World Anti-Doping Agency’s (WADA) whereabouts clause. We have to give all our day-to-day details to the WADA. But it is shocking to me that my name has figured amongst the dope- tainted athletes,” said a teary-eyed Mandeep.”Never in my career have I used any banned substances and if there is any possibility, it could be because of the vitamin supplements that I have used,” she said.Mandeep said she will wait for the panel to come out with its verdict and is hopeful that she will come out clean.IAAF conducted dope tests on a few of the Indian athletes through an independent agency and Mandeep and Jauna were the only two athletes who flunked the tests.NADA also conducted dope tests on 59 athletes during the June 11-14 inter-state championships in Bangalore and five athletes, including Jauna failed the dope tests.Just as athletics was growing in popularity in the country, the positive dope cases have sent shock waves amongst the athletes and the administrators of the sport.While the role of the athletes during such cases is often questioned and they are subsequently penalised, the source of the problem is generally overlooked.In fact, in the last few years, majority of sports in India have been hit hard by the doping menace and the authorities have failed to arrest the situation.The Indian Olympic Association (IOA) has already called for a judicial inquiry into the cases and also blamed the Sports Authority of India (SAI) coaches at the national camps for the rising dope cases.The 2012 Olympics are nearing and suspensions of top athletes has only reduced the country’s hopes of winning medals at the quadrennial extravaganza.Former athletes have demanded a thorough probe into the doping menace. Sprint queen PT Usha questioned the need to send the athletes to countries like Ukraine and blamed the exposure trips like these as one of the prominent reasons for the disaster.”We must have a thorough inquiry into this. Whether the AFI or the government, someone has to do it. Everybody involved should be nabbed,” said Usha.”I have been hearing for more than 10 years about the futility of sending athletes to Ukraine for training and other dirty things being done there. I think had the authorities been careful and acted on the allegations then the current mess would have been avoided.” NADA ready to nail offenders Meanwhile, the National Anti-Doping Agency ( NADA) has formulated a six-point agenda to crack down on the doping menace wherein it will get customs involved with it to check what the athletes bring in while travelling into the country.advertisementNADA director general Rahul Bhatnagar made his concerns clear and said the agency will come up with more programmes to curb the positive doping cases among the Indian athletes.”We are obviously concerned about whatever has happened over the past couple of years and we have a plan ready to tackle the situation,” Bhatnagar told MAIL TODAY on Friday.”The athletes regularly go out of the country for exposure trips but nobody knows what they bring with them as far as food supplements are concerned. We will get the customs involved with us so that we can keep a check on what these athletes carry with them,” he noted.Besides, there are voices which have been claiming that it’s not just the athletes who are to be blamed but the coaches and other members of the support staff are also involved at some level and they get away easily.Bhatnagar said the NADA will approach the employers of the coaches to keep a strict vigilance on these coaches and act accordingly if any of their employees are found guilty.”So many times we get to hear that besides the athletes there are other people involved as well. But not much can be done so from now on we will ask the employers of the coaches to keep a strict watch on the coaches and anybody who is found to be doing anything wrong must be penalised.”He further said that the NADA will raid the rooms and camps of the athletes randomly so that the dope cheats can be nabbed there and then. There will also be an increase in the sample collection so that more number of athletes undergo the dope tests.Over the past few years, most number of positive dope cases have came from the national camps, raising a lot of questions on the activities within the training camps.Bhatnagar said that the athletes will be closely monitored during the camps. “There is a need to keep a vigilant eye on the activities of the athletes.We will see to it that where these athletes go while they are in the camp, the shops they normally visit and the products they buy from there,” he noted.
Everton boss Silva has three matches to save jobby Paul Vegas14 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveEverton boss Marco Silva has been handed three matches to save his job.The Daily Star says Silva has been told he has the next three matches to save his job on Merseyside.The Portuguese manager has endured a nightmare start to the season with the Toffees, taking just two victories from eight matches played.Everton, at this early point in the season, find themselves in the relegation zone and Silva has been told time is running out.Silva believed he would be sacked during the international break, following Everton’s lacklustre defeat by Burnley.Crisis talks are said to have taken place at Goodison, during which Silva was informed the results of the next three games would have large bearing on his future. TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say
New Delhi: The Central Bureau of Investigation has issued Look Out Circulars (LOC) against Sanjay Singal and wife Aarti Singal, both directors of debt-ridden Bhushan Power and Steel Ltd (BPSL), which is currently embroiled in a bank fraud case of Rs 2, 348 crore, sources here said.The agency had registered an FIR in the case against the company and its directors earlier this month, naming the couple along with several promoters and associates of the company. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c detailsThe CBI had alleged that top-level officials of BPSL hatched a criminal conspiracy with unknown public servants to divert funds from loan accounts in a Chandigarh branch of Punjab National Bank and Kolkata branches of Oriental Bank of Commerce, IDBI Bank, and UCO Bank through several shell companies “without any obvious purpose”. The Singal couple is currently in India, and the LOCs against them is intended to prevent their escape. Moreover, it has also been alleged that BPSL was one of the companies to have paid kickbacks to companies owned and controlled by Deepak and Rajiv Kochhar, in exchange for loans from ICICI Bank, which was headed by Chanda Kochhar, Deepak’s wife, at the time. Also Read – Tourists to be allowed in J&K from ThursdayAccording to highly-placed sources, the Enforcement Directorate received a letter detailing these allegations sometime last month and confirmed that some of the allegations in the letter are ones the probe agency was not aware of. As per the CBI’s FIR against BPSL, ICICI Bank had sanctioned and disbursed loans of up to Rs 586.6 crore to BPSL between 2007 and 2014. Chanda Kochhar became Chairperson of the private lender in 2009. Adding to these allegations, the CBI has accused the Delhi-based steel manufacturer of defaulting on loans of up to Rs 47, 204 crores, borrowed from around 33 banks and financial institutions between 2007 and 2014.
Emotions ran high after Ohio State won a match against Penn State on Nov. 12. Credit: Jenna Leinasars | Assistant News DirectorThe Ohio State women’s volleyball team was hungry on Saturday, and unfortunately for the Nittany Lions, they were on the night’s menu. The Buckeyes put on arguably their best performance of the season, toppling No. 10 Penn State at St. John Arena in five sets (25-23, 15-25, 19-25, 25-22, 18-16). OSU’s last win over the Nittany Lions dates back to 2006. The Buckeye momentum started rolling on Friday evening with a home sweep over Rutgers. Moving into Saturday, nearly 4,400 fans — including a rival student section, a rarity in collegiate regular season volleyball — packed into St. John Arena to watch the underdog defend their court against the Nittany Lion powerhouse. Penn State swept the Buckeyes in University Park during their last matchup on Oct. 19. OSU coach Geoff Carlston said he was overjoyed with the performance and determination that his team showed. “I’m so happy for our team as a whole, but especially our seniors,” he said. “We’ve been grinding hard to get a win like that, and to be on the brink of defeat so many times but to be able to fight back like we did, I couldn’t be more proud.” Carlston started out the game by changing his offense. His team ran a 6-2 against Penn State for the first time this season, which utilizes two setters and a total of six hitters, depending on rotation. Right from the beginning of the first set, OSU limited the Nittany Lions’ multiple-point runs and stifled Penn State’s pair of dynamic hitters, Simone Lee and Haleigh Washington. Four straight Buckeye kills mid-set would make the score 15-10. With few points left in the first set, Penn State inched their way back into contention, tying the score at 19, 21, 22 and 23. Senior middle blocker Taylor Sandbothe secured three kills in the final five points to give the Buckeyes an edge. An attacking error from the Nittany Lions would give the first set to OSU. Senior libero Valeria León said the Buckeyes came out with a solid mindset, and that helped them play strong coming out of the gate. “We believed that we’re good enough to beat them, so we came out with that thought,” she said. Things turned sour for the Buckeyes in the second set as unforced errors caused OSU to play catch-up. They allowed Penn State to go on costly runs without countering. Penn State held the Buckeyes to just a .077 attacking percentage, which allowed the Nittany Lions to capitalize on OSU’s mistakes and secure themselves the second set. Carlston said to his team during intermission that they were going to have to fight back if they wanted a victory.“After the second set, we talked about, “Moral victories suck,”” he said, recalling his pep talk following the second set. “We’re just as deserving as Penn State to win this match, but the game is not just going to give it to you.”The Buckeyes improved slightly in the third set, but old habits from the prior set still lingered. A late OSU effort put the team within four points of the Nittany Lions at 19-23, but two Penn State kills quickly fell and ended the set. Penn State then held the advantage 2-1. Both teams had a lot to lose in the fourth set, and the nine tie scores showed it. León led the Buckeyes on a three-point run to lock the score up at 9-9. Not long after, Penn State’s Abby Detering took the Nittany Lions on their own three-point run to an 11-13 edge. Nearing the end of the fourth, it was anyone’s game. Senior middle blocker Taylor Sandbothe emerged with monstrous kills and a look on her face of pure determination. She put down eight kills without any trouble, and gave OSU the set win it needed to stay alive. Entering the final set, the Buckeyes briefly held the lead before it changed hands to the Nittany Lions. Down by three points (7-10) in the critical fifth set, OSU took a timeout to evaluate their strategy. It was once again Sandbothe who slammed down another kill out of the break and helped to pull the Buckeyes out of the hole. Back and forth play pushed the set to extra points, and the biggest crowd OSU has seen this season made themselves heard. Senior setter Abby Fesl said it was motivating to hear those yells and cheers, and their voices added to the anticipation of the moment. “Just hearing everyone towards the end of game five, really getting into it – I could tell people were feeling it with us, and that’s when you love to play the game,” she said. Tied at 16-16, junior outside hitter Luisa Schirmer shined in the final moments. She swung away for two kills to give OSU the match victory and the upset. Carlston said the fifth set says a lot about a team, and he’s glad his team persevered through the fire.“The fifth set is just about heart and guts and grit. I was so happy with the heart and grit we showed, especially at the end,” he said. Sandbothe led the team’s offense with 25 kills and tied sophomore outside hitter Audra Appold in attacking efficiency with .320. Sophomore setter Taylor Hughes had the program’s first triple-double in at least five years with 10 kills, 34 assists and 12 digs. Fesl also contributed 27 assists on the night, while León added 24 digs. Fesl said the unsatisfying defeat they faced at Penn State on Oct. 19 was in OSU’s mind during tonight’s match.“Going to Penn State mid-week a couple weeks ago and dropping three straight sets kind of sat with us for a while, so this win was really big for us,” she said. “It means a lot for us going forward.” León has been through four years of losing to the Nittany Lions, and she said she’s proud to help put an end to that streak.“They (Penn State) fought. They played hard, and they didn’t give it to us. We went out there and we got it,” she said. “It’s one of those feelings I’m not going to be able to recreate.” Carlston said the nature of the Big Ten conference relies a lot on timing and opportunity.“This is a league you put a lot of heart and soul into, but you have to be really patient (to get a win),” he said. Ten years of patience paid off for the Buckeyes on Saturday.