Signs are pointing to progress in South Bend. Player development was an intangible that, three years ago, gave Brian Kelly hope for success with Notre Dame's relatively uncultivated bumper crop of football recruits. While dealing from the bottom -- or maybe even the middle -- of the talent deck, Kelly found winning formulas at Grand Valley, Central Michigan and Cincinnati. It's put-up time for the Irish. The talent pool's deeper at Notre Dame. Sink or swim. Kelly and his staff get the chance to show off that knack for development. Quarterback, receiver and cornerback all are areas that will be scrutinized closely this fall. ... Notre Dame circa 2012 could actually be better than last year's edition, but still end up with a worse record. (South Bend Tribune) Comment
For his part, Kevin Durant feels as if he's entering his prime. Back home in Washington for a brief reprieve to promote and premiere for family and friends his feature film debut, "Thunderstruck," Durant also wanted to let it be known that while he won't turn 24 until late September, the Oklahoma City all-star forward considers himself too much of an essential element of the NBA's present to be clumped into discussions about its future. "I've heard a few times, in three or four years, this league is going to be yours. ... I don't like that. Because I think I'm established now. My time is now," Durant said. "I feel as though I've proved myself these last five years that I can be one of the top players in the league." (The Washington Post) Comment
Even Red Sox fans would likely concede that life hasn't been easy on Josh Beckett lately. [In Los Angeles, Beckett] leaned back in his chair, in front of the locker he had acquired barely 24 hours earlier. He looked relaxed, comfortable, as he submitted to yet more questions from the media. It was a sight rarely seen in Boston of late, as Beckett declined to speak to reporters on the days before he pitched -- and often on the days he did pitch. This, apparently, is the kinder and friendlier West Coast version of the pitcher whose relationship soured with the Red Sox organization with which he spent the last seven years. Both Beckett and first baseman Adrian Gonzalez maintained their excitement at having been traded to the Dodgers (The Boston Globe) Comment
Jets wide receiver Santonio Holmes can't handle a pass during the Jets-Panthers preseason game at MetLife Stadium on Aug. 26, 2012. (Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images)
Celtics' rookie Fab Melo vs. a chair. It's fair to say the chair loses.