Helio Castroneves walks past the Borg-Warner Trophy, which he lost by six-hundredths of a second last year.
INDIANAPOLIS — It’s tough to fathom 0.06 of a second. Helio Castroneves has tried. Just the other day, he pulled out his phone, clicked on the timer app and tried to tap on and off in that span. The closest he could get was 0.09. But he knows the significance of such a blink-of-the-eye in time. It was the gap by which he came in second to Ryan Hunter-Reay last year at the Indianapolis 500, the second-closest finish in the race’s history. It was the difference that kept Castroneves from becoming the fourth driver to win the 500 four times, joining A.J. Foyt, Al Unser Sr., and Rick Mears, the latest to do it 24 years ago.
A positive vibe surrounds the resurgent Cleveland Indians, who are surfing a wave of a feeling that something good will happen at some point for them in every game. By contrast, the Cincinnati Reds are cloaked in gloom so thick it seems even if they found a winning lottery ticket, it would lead to burdensome tax problems. Those opposite feelings were on display Saturday when Cleveland carved out a 2-1 victory over Cincinnati in the second game of their interleague series at Progressive Field.
HOUSTON — Stephen Curry scored 40 points and the Golden State Warriors made it look easy, beating the Houston Rockets 115-80 on Saturday night to take a 3-0 lead in the Western Conference finals.
CHICAGO — Antoine Vermette scored at 5:37 of the second overtime, and the Chicago Blackhawks beat the Anaheim Ducks 5-4 on Saturday night to tie the Western Conference finals at two games apiece.
The Clippers couldn’t answer the Gwinnett Braves on Saturday night at Huntington Park and left a standing-room-only crowd of 12,278 with little to get excited about in a 6-1 loss. During an 8-4 victory on Friday, the Clippers more than matched each of the Braves’ scoring bursts. This time around, four Gwinnett pitchers limited Columbus’ offense to four hits. Meanwhile, the Braves jumped Clippers starter Jordan Cooper (2-1) early and often.
For almost 60 minutes Friday, Crew SC was holding true to its early season form. A disappointing loss at San Jose looked to be well in the rearview mirror when Kei Kamara scored his second goal to give the Crew a 2-0 lead over the Chicago Fire at Mapfre Stadium. But instead of holding serve, the Crew allowed two goals — one seconds before the final whistle after four minutes of stoppage time — for a 2-2 tie that felt like a loss. The road gets no easier, as the Crew, winless away from home, faces consecutive road games.
At first glance, it was hard not to be cynical about the message out of this week’s Big Ten athletic directors’ meeting in suburban Chicago. Conference commissioner Jim Delany and several athletic directors admitted that Delaney’s widely reported idea to make freshman ineligible accomplished what he intended by merely starting a discussion on ways to reform college athletics.
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In the BCS era from 1998-2013, there was only one team that won the BCS Championship Game in back-to-back seasons. Alabama took down LSU in 2011 and then Notre Dame in 2012.
One team that seemed poised to do so, however, was the 2003 Ohio State squad, and members of that squad have some advice for the 2015 Buckeyes as they look to win back-to-back championships in the College Football Playoff.
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