39th Annual Sarasota Jazz Festival Returns March 3 through 9th

(Sarasota, FL) The 39th Annual Sarasota Jazz Festival returns from March 3 through 9 with over 120 performers and 48 jazz related activities.

The schedule this year features five styles of live jazz (straight ahead, blues, Latin, classic and contemporary), a movie starring Dexter Gordon, and a new play with music about Louis Armstrong and Lil Hardin Armstrong, the wife who helped make him a star. In keeping with the theme “Generations of Jazz,” artistic director Ken Peplowski teams established musicians with rising stars, to create never-before-heard combinations of talent.

Sarasota’s Hyatt Regency Hotel is the festival’s home venue this year. Thirteen other venues are also participating during the week.

The festival has grown exponentially, from seven events in 2018 to 48 this year. “We’re bringing more jazz, and more styles of jazz, to more places,” said Jazz Club president Ed Linehan. Besides the Hyatt, other festival locations in Sarasota include Phillippi Estate Park, 5500 S. Tamiami Trail; Burns Court Cinema, 506 Burns Lane; St. Paul Lutheran Church, 2256 Bahia Vista Street and ten area clubs participating in the pub crawl by trolley.

On his return engagement as music director, Peplowski has assembled nationally and internationally prominent musicians for “Generations of Jazz,” teaming established performers with rising stars: Dick Hyman, Bill Charlap, Shelly Berg (piano); Randy Brecker, Randy Sandke, Jjames Suggs (trumpet); Houston Person, Roxy Coss, Aaron Johnson (saxophone); John Lamb (bass) and Mary Stallings and Charles Turner (vocals).

In addition to the mainstage performances, this year the Jazz Club introduces afternoon concerts on Friday and Saturday featuring four bands playing concurrently on four themed stages, allowing festival-goers to move among them.

Admission to Sarasota Jazz Festival events ranges from free to a peak of $55 for single tickets, with discounts for Jazz Club members and buyers of combination tickets. Packages including hotel and other VIP offers provide admission to private musician meet-and-greets and preferred seating at some events. The Sarasota Jazz Festival website offers a one-stop approach for information and tickets at https://www.sarasotajazzfestival.org.

USF Defeats ECU 72-68 in OT to Extend Winning Streak to 5

(Tampa, FL) Mayan Kiir’s big-time block before the buzzer sent things to overtime and USF took care of business at the free throw line down the stretch of a 72-68 victory over East Carolina on Sunday at the Yuengling Center.

USF (17-6, 7-4 in AAC) secured its first five-game winning streak in league play since the 1991-92 season by sinking 16 free throws after David Collins registered the Bulls’ final field goal with 6:09 left in regulation.

Collins finished with a game-high 21 points after making nine of 12 free throws, including three in overtime to help USF go 10-for-14 from the charity stripe in the final five minutes.
Star forward Alexis Yetna missed his second straight game with an injury and Kiir played a huge role in his place. In addition to making the defensive play of the game, the sophomore from Bradenton, Fla., scored eight of his career-high 13 points after USF headed into halftime trailing, 39-28.

Laquincy Rideau made a pair of clutch free throws to tie the game at 62-62 with 12 seconds left in regulation. The redshirt junior guard finished with 12 points and four assists while the Bulls posted their second five-game winning streak of the season, a program first since 1990-91.

Justin Brown added 10 points while freshman forward Michael Durr pulled down a career-high 13 rebounds as USF dominated on the boards by a 46-22 margin.

ECU (9-14, 2-9 AAC) knocked down six of its first eight threes on the way to building a 39-28 halftime lead. The Pirates opened the game with a 17-7 advantage after making their first four shots from long range.

USF answered the bell right after the break and used a 14-2 run to take a 47-45 lead with 12:17 to play. ECU jumped back ahead by three before USF fired back with a 7-0 run and Brown’s three spotted the Bulls a 54-50 advantage.

The Pirates took the lead back with 3:37 left in regulation and stayed ahead until Rideau’s game-tying free throws with 12 seconds remaining. USF pulled ahead for the final time with 1:53 left in overtime on a pair of free throws by Kiir and the Bulls’ defense limited ECU to a 2-for-8 shooting performance from the field in the final period.

“You’ve got to give our guys credit”, said Bulls Head Coach Brian Gregory. “They kind of dug in there in the second half and got just enough stops to put us in some offensive positions where we could score the ball finally and do what we do, which is defend. We didn’t score a basket for the last six minutes or in overtime, but we scored 16 points because we’re an aggressive, hard-charging team and we’ve gotten better shooting the free throws.”

USF travels to Orlando for a War on I-4 clash with rival UCF on Wednesday, Feb. 13. The 7 p.m. matchup will be televised on ESPNews.





USF Bulls Edge SMU 67-66 on Collins Clutch 3 Pointer

(Dallas, TX) David Collins sank a go-ahead three with six seconds remaining as USF stunned SMU, 67-66, Thursday night at Moody Coliseum.

Collins’ clutch shot helped USF (16-6, 6-4 in AAC) extend its winning streak to four games, the Bulls’ longest string of victories in league play since the magical 2011-12 season in the Big East. USF also improved to 10 games above .500 for the first time since March 1992.

Collins set up his game-winning shot with another three that tied the game at 64-64 with 1:12 remaining. The sophomore guard finished his heroic outing with a game-high 23 points and made three of USF’s season-high 11 threes.

Laquincy Rideau added 14 points, nine assists and six rebounds while making program history with his defense. The redshirt junior guard became USF’s new single-season steals leader with 69.

USF was without the services of star forward Alexis Yetna, who sat out with an injury. Freshman Michael Durr stepped up with eight points and grabbed a loose ball to help set up Collins’ game-winning shot.

Thursday’s back-and-forth first half featured 10 lead changes and USF seized the momentum just before the break with a 9-0 run that spotted the Bulls a 39-35 advantage.

Rideau sank one of his career high-tying four first-half threes during the late surge and led the Bulls with 13 points at the break on top of totaling six assists. Rideau also set the USF single-season steals record in the opening period.

Collins scored five of his 10 first-half points in the final two minutes and made four of his first seven shots. USF went 52 percent from the field in the first 20 minutes and knocked down seven threes.

Xavier Castaneda’s steal-and-score put the Bulls up by eight with 5:08 remaining in the second half before SMU (12-10, 4-6 in AAC) went on an 11-0 run and took a 64-61 lead with 1:27 to play.
Collins’s second three of the game tied things up with 1:12 to play and his third bucket from long range, off a nice pass from Rideau, gave the Bulls the game-sealing bucket with six seconds to go.

“We set up a play to get a three, if it was available,” said Bulls Head Coach Brian Gregory. “We weren’t going to force one. If they overplayed it, then we were going to try to attack the basket. That’s what we did the play before and David did a pretty good job.”

USF returns to the Yuengling Center to host East Carolina on Sunday at 5:30 p.m. (TV: ESPN3).





USF Bulls 2019 Football Schedule Released

(Tampa, FL) The USF football team will open its third season under head coach Charlie Strong with a primetime clash vs. Wisconsin on Friday, Aug. 30 nationally televised on an ESPN network from Raymond James Stadium. The American Athletic Conference announced the 2019 schedules for all 12 conference teams on Thursday.

The clash with the Badgers, No. 17 in the CBS Sports Way-too-early Top 25 rankings for 2019, moving to Friday night of Labor Day weekend was among the highlights of a 2019 schedule that will see the Bulls play seven games in Raymond James Stadium, including five against opponents that played in bowl games last season.

The Bulls’ conference slate is highlighted by three straight November home clashes with conference title contenders Temple (2018 East Division runner-up), Cincinnati (2018 East Division third place) and Memphis (back-to-back West Division winner) before the regular season finale in the War on I-4 in Orlando. Kickoff times and remaining television designations will be announced at a later date.

The Bulls will open their 23rd season of football with their biggest season opener since winning on the road at No. 16 Notre Dame (23-20) to open the 2011 campaign. The Wisconsin game, which was originally slated for an Aug. 31 kick, will pit the Bulls against a Badger program coming off its 17th straight bowl appearance and returning Doak Walker Award winner Jonathan Taylor, who ran for 2,194 yards last season. Wisconsin appears in multiple preseason Top 25 polls after an 8-5 season capped by a 35-3 victory over Miami in the New Era Pinstripe Bowl. The Badgers won the first meeting with USF, 27-10, in 2014 in Madison, Wisc.

USF will travel to Georgia Tech on Sat., Sept. 7 for the second meeting between the schools. The Bulls used 21 unanswered points in the fourth quarter to post a 49-38 comeback win vs. Tech in Tampa last year. The Bulls return home on Sat., Sept. 14 to face South Carolina State and get the first of two byes on the season the following week before opening conference play in Raymond James Stadium on Sat., Sept. 28 vs. SMU. The Bulls own a 3-1 record vs. the Mustangs and it will be the first meeting since a 35-27 victory in Dallas in 2016.

USF will hit the road to face UConn on Sat., Oct. 5. The Bulls own an 11-5 record vs. the Huskies and have won the last seven meetings. USF will wrap up its non-conference slate vs. BYU on Sat., Oct. 12. It will be the first meeting with the Cougars, who posted a 7-6 mark and defeated Western Michigan in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl last season.

USF returns to conference action with back-to-back road games. The Bulls will travel to Navy on Sat., Oct. 19 for a game televised on CBS Sports Network and then head to ECU on Sat. Oct. 26 as conference play heats up.

USF will get its second bye of the season before a strong closing slate against teams that posted a combined conference record of 26-6 last year. The Bulls will get the first three of those games at home starting with a Thurs., Nov. 7 primetime game vs. Temple on ESPN. USF fell to 2-3 vs. the Owls after a 27-17 loss in Philadelphia last year as Temple went 7-1 in the conference and finished second in the East Division. The Bulls beat Temple, 43-7, in 2017 in a Thursday primetime clash in Raymond James Stadium.

Cincinnati comes to Tampa on Sat., Nov. 16 followed by a visit by defending West Division champion Memphis on Sat., Nov. 23. The Bearcats posted an 11-2 record last season, including a 35-23 victory over USF in Cincinnati to take a 9-7 lead in the series and end a string of three straight USF wins. Memphis posted an 8-6 record last season and fell in the conference championship game for the second straight year. The Tigers lead the series with USF, 5-4, but the Bulls posted a 49-42 victory in Memphis in the last meeting in 2016.

The Bulls close out the 2019 regular season with the traditional Friday clash with UCF. The 11th installment of the War on I-4 is set for Fri., Nov. 29 in Orlando and will be broadcast on an ESPN Network to be designated later. USF leads the series, 6-4, but will look to end a string of two straight wins by the Knights, who claimed a 38-10 victory in Tampa last year and won an epic 49-42 game in the last meeting in Orlando in 2017.

The American Athletic Conference Football Championship Game will be played on Saturday, Dec. 7 at the home site of the division winner with the better conference record.





“Book Talk” guest Dane Huckelbridge author “No Beast So Fierce”

Doug Miles talks with Dane Huckelbridge author “No Beast So Fierce: The Terrifying Story of the Champawat Tiger, the Deadliest Animal in History” on “Talk Across America”.





Baltimore Orioles Host Sarasota Springfest February 16th At Ed Smith Stadium

(Sarasota, FL) The Orioles invite fans of all ages to celebrate the start of Spring Training at Sarasota Springfest, a free family-friendly event at Ed Smith Stadium on Saturday, February 16. Along with watching Orioles pitchers and catchers practice on the back fields, fans can also enjoy games and interactive activities in the stadium from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. ET.

The fourth annual Sarasota Springfest event will feature a question and answer session with Orioles outfielder Cedric Mullins at approximately 12:30 p.m. Fans will once again have opportunities to play catch on the Ed Smith Stadium field, take a behind-the-scenes tour of the ballpark, and participate in a “Pitch for Charity” event to benefit Miracle League of Manasota.

“There’s no better way for fans to warm up for Spring Training than to attend our free Springfest,” said Greg Bader, Orioles Vice President, Communications & Marketing. “We’re excited to welcome fans for a day of fun, family-friendly activities at the ballpark with an opportunity to watch Orioles players practice on the back fields.”

Outfielder Cedric Mullins, a 13th round pick by the Orioles in the 2015 First-Year Player Draft, made his Major League debut in August of last season after successfully progressing through the minor league system. Throughout the minors and in Baltimore, Mullins participates in community events during the season and the offseason. MASNsports.com beat writer Roch Kubatko will emcee the Q&A session.

Field conditions permitting, two sessions of “Have A Catch” will be offered on the main field, at approximately 10:00 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. Access is first-come, first-served, and participants must bring their own gloves and sign a liability waiver.

“We encourage parents, children, and fans of all ages to have fun on the same field used by the Orioles during Spring Training games,” Bader said. “Being able to play catch on a Major League ballfield is a rare experience for fans, and we’re excited to provide that opportunity again this year.”

Orioles event staff will provide stadium tours every 20 minutes beginning at 10:00 a.m. Fans will see areas not usually open to the public, including the press box, World Series Suites, Home Plate Suite, Third Base Lounge, and visiting team’s clubhouse.

Access to Springfest will be through the Left Field Gate adjacent to the East Lot off of 12th Street and Tuttle Avenue, where free parking will be provided. Guests under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, fans may visit Orioles.com/Springfest.

Fans are invited to watch Orioles workouts on the back fields at the complex each day from February 13 through February 22 from approximately 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The first full squad workout will be held on Monday, February 18. There is no charge to attend, and parking in the East Lot is free.

The Orioles will play their first of 17 home Spring Training games in 2019 at Ed Smith Stadium on Saturday, February 23, at 1:05 p.m. against the Minnesota Twins. Spring Training game tickets, as well as Orioles merchandise, will be available for purchase during Springfest.





USF Tops Memphis 84-78 Saturday in Tampa for Third Straight Win

(Tampa, FL) Justin Brown scored a career-high 19 points and made five 3-pointers and USF held off a late Memphis rally on its way to an 84-78 victory over the Tigers on Saturday afternoon at the Yuengling Center.

Brown made three of his five three-pointers in the opening five minutes as USF scored the first 19 points of the game and led 27-1 before Memphis made its first field goal at the 10:11 mark on a three-pointer from Kyvon Davenport. USF held Memphis to just four field goals and led 38-13 at halftime to mark the third time this season the Bulls have held an opponent to fewer than 20 points in a half.

David Collins finished with 20 points, five rebounds and two steals and has scored at least 20 points in three of his four career games against Memphis. Laquincy Rideau added 15 points, four rebounds and two steals and tied the USF single-season steals record with his 68th of the season.

Jeremiah Martin led Memphis with 41 points and made 7-of-9 three-pointers and Davenport finished with 13 points of the bench.

A three-pointer from Tyler Harris with 4:18 left in the second half cut the USF lead to 69-60 to pull Memphis within single digits for the first time since the 16:46 mark of the first half. Memphis trimmed the deficit to six points twice in the final minutes on a three-pointer and layup by Martin, but Xavier Castaneda picked up a pass on the final Tiger possession to secure USF’s third straight victory.

USF (15-6, 5-4) shot over 50 percent in each half and finished 47.1 percent from three-point range and 72.7 percent from the free throw line.

“Memphis is really good”, said Bulls Head Coach Brian Gregory. “We talked all week long about how good they’ve been playing and about their ability to comeback or extend games because of their pressure. I thought the way we played in the first 15 minutes was the best we’ve played all year long.

The Bulls continue league play Thursday at 9 p.m. when the Bulls travel to Dallas, Texas, to face SMU at Moody Coliseum.





“Book Talk” guest Elizabeth White author “55, Underemployed and Faking Normal”

Doug Miles talks with Elizabeth White author “55, Underemployed and Faking Normal” on “Talk Across America”. Book available here: https://amzn.to/2Mm6uHj





USF Bulls Defeat Wichita State 54-41 Tuesday Night in Tampa

(Information provided by USF Athletics)
(Tampa, FL) David Collins scored 13 points and grabbed six rebounds and USF held Wichita State to its lowest scoring output this season on its way to a 54-41 victory over the Shockers Tuesday evening at the Yuengling Center.

USF (13-6, 3-4) turned in a dominant first half by holding Wichita State to 15 points on 6-for-27 shooting from the field. The Shockers also went 0-for-8 from three-point range in the first half and finished the game 2-for-18 from beyond the arc.

T.J. Lang’s three-pointer seven minutes into play put USF ahead 12-2 and the Bulls would lead by at least six points for the remainder of the half. Five consecutive free throws from USF over the final 2:19 gave the Bulls a 30-15 lead at halftime.

USF took its largest lead on a layup by Mayan Kiir early in the second half to go ahead 35-17, but Wichita State answered with a 14-2 run to cut the deficit to six points with 7:16 remaining. Rideau, who finished with 11 points, nine rebounds, five assists and four steals, pushed the lead back to eight with a layup and Justin Brown hit a three-pointer on the next USF possession to give the Bulls a 42-33 edge.

Two free throws by Jamarius Burton helped Wichita State pull within five points with just under five minutes left, but two free throws from Kiir and a three-pointer by Alexis Yetna (Paris) extended the lead back to double digits. Samajae Haynes-Jones had the final field goal for Wichita State at the 3:46 mark, and Collins scored the final seven points for USF to help the Bulls improve to 11-2 at home this season.

Markis McDuffie led Wichita State with 11 points and was the only Shocker to score in double figures.

“I couldn’t be more proud of our guys”, said Bulls Head Coach Brian Gregory. “We talked on Sunday that after losing to three of the top four teams in our league, we we’re going to need to respond. I told the guys that we’ll see what our commitment level is towards what we are trying to build, and I thought you saw it tonight. It wasn’t pretty on offense, but it was really good on defense, it was really good.”

The Bulls continue league play Saturday at 4 p.m. when the Bulls travel to Greenville, N.C., to face ECU on ESPNU.





“Big Band Files” with Doug Miles “Salute to Baseball”

On this edition of the “Big Band Files” we salute baseball with some of the great moments in play-by-play along with songs about the game. Voices include: Ernie Harwell, Curt Gowdy, Red Barber, Vin Scully and Jerry Doggett.

You’ll hear Jerry Doggett call the final inning of Sal Maglie’s no-hitter in a vintage 1956 radio broadcast and Vin Scully will do the postgame recap. You’ll also hear a rare interview with Joe DiMaggio by my co-host on “Sports Talk” Don Henderson. Songs include: Talkin’ Baseball, I Saw it on the Radio, There Used to be a Ballpark, Van Lingle Mungo, Baseball Blues, My Wife Saw the Dodgers Play at Ebbets Field and more.





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