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Gov. Pritzker signs new Illinois congressional map into law

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Gov. Pritzker signs new Illinois congressional map into law

CHICAGO (AP) — The Democratic governor of Illinois has signed the state’s new congressional district map into law.

The outline Gov. J.B. Pritzker approved Tuesday formalizes boundaries drawn to help Democrats in next year’s midterm elections.

Democrats who control the Illinois Legislature approved the proposal in October. The map was intended to eliminate two Republican-held districts and make elections easier for Democratic candidates, even with the state losing one congressional seat due to population loss.

It comes as Republicans are well-positioned to win control of the U.S. House of Representatives next year.

Democrats say the new map reflects Illinois’ diversity. Republicans and others criticized it as drawn to benefit the party in power after crafting it without public input.

By SARA BURNETT, Associated Press

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St. Louis Blues hold 15th annual blood drive

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St. Louis Blues hold 15th annual blood drive

ST. LOUIS — For those fans who have said they bleed blue, today was a chance to show it. The St. Louis Blues Blood Drive kicked off at noon Thursday.

“I know there is a blood shortage,” said Kevin Bersing, who donated blood at Enterprise Center. “I’ve been reading about that, and if there’s sick people, then I’m willing to give.”

This is the 15th consecutive year the Blues, the American Red Cross, Bally Sports Midwest, and Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield have asked fans to roll up their sleeves.

“This is our annual Blues Blood Drive where we have a lot of people who are always excited to get our T-shirts come out and get a chance to win an autographed puck today,” said Sharon Watson, the regional communications director for American Red Cross Missouri & Arkansas. “Then also, during the month of January, you have a chance to win tickets to the Super Bowl. So, a lot of incentives to come out to the drive today.”

A specially designed yellow St. Louis Blues T-shirt was given to fans who donated, while supplies lasted.

From Enterprise Center to Centene Community Center in Maryland Heights to American Legion Post 365 in Collinsville, Illinois, St. Louisans willing to brave the cold decided to help a good cause.

Blood supplies have been low nationwide, and the American Red Cross and area hospitals are asking individuals to consider donating blood.

“We have a blood crisis,” said Watson. “Basically, since January 11 we announced we are seeing a shortage of less than a day’s supply of blood available to hospitals to be able to use.”

Thursday, more than 900 people registered to give at least one unit, or a pint, of blood as part of the Blues Blood Drive.

The American Red Cross of Missouri and Arkansas said they’re seeing a 10 percent drop in donations across the country because of the pandemic.

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CU Buffs can’t get it done at crunch time against No. 16 USC

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CU Buffs can’t get it done at crunch time against No. 16 USC

The streak is over.

Unable to consistently solve the USC defense throughout the contest while missing several key free throws down the stretch, the 16th-ranked Trojans were able to hold off the Colorado Buffaloes on Thursday, handing the Buffs a 61-58 defeat at the CU Events Center.

The loss ended CU’s seven-game winning streak against USC.

CU finished with a .314 shooting percentage against a Trojans defense that entered the game ranked second in the Pac-12 Conference in defensive field goal percentage. USC also out-rebounded the Buffs 47-32.

Jabari Walker scored a team-high 13 points, but the last of his five turnovers ended CU’s last-gasp possession in the waning seconds with USC leading by three. Evan Battey and Tristan da Silva added 10 points apiece for the Buffs.

CU played without senior guard Elijah Parquet, who has been battling a lower leg injury.

 

No. 16 Southern Cal 61, Colorado 58

SOUTHERN CAL (14-2, 5-2)

Goodwin 6-17 2-5 14, Mobley 5-13 2-2 13, Anderson 2-5 0-0 5, Ellis 4-7 3-3 11, Peterson 1-7 0-0 2, Agbonkpolo 3-5 5-7 11, Morgan 0-3 0-0 0, White 1-2 0-0 3, Dixon-Waters 1-3 0-0 2, Johnson 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 23-62 12-17 61.

COLORADO (12-5, 4-3)

Battey 3-10 4-6 10, Walker 3-9 5-6 13, da Silva 3-8 2-4 10, Barthelemy 3-11 3-3 9, Clifford 2-5 0-0 5, Simpson 1-4 4-4 7, O’Brien 1-1 0-0 3, Lovering 0-3 0-0 0, Hammond 0-0 1-2 1. Totals 16-51 19-25 58.

Halftime — 25-25. 3-point goals — Southern Cal 3-12 (Anderson 1-1, White 1-2, Mobley 1-4, Agbonkpolo 0-1, Dixon-Waters 0-1, Ellis 0-1, Peterson 0-2), Colorado 7-15 (Walker 2-3, da Silva 2-3, O’Brien 1-1, Clifford 1-2, Simpson 1-2, Battey 0-1, Barthelemy 0-3). Rebounds — Southern Cal 47 (Goodwin 18), Colorado 32 (Battey, Walker 8). Assists — Southern Cal 8 (Mobley 3), Colorado 10 (Battey 3). Total fouls — Southern Cal 21, Colorado 18.

 

 

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The Chicago Bears interviewed Reggie McKenzie for their GM vacancy. Here’s what to know about the Miami Dolphins senior personnel executive.

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The Chicago Bears interviewed Reggie McKenzie for their GM vacancy. Here’s what to know about the Miami Dolphins senior personnel executive.

The Chicago Bears have reached out to at least 15 general manager candidates and 10 coaching candidates for interviews. As they go through the interview process, we’re looking at each of the prospective hires.

Reggie McKenzie interviewed for the GM opening on Thursday, the team announced.

Reggie McKenzie

Title: Miami Dolphins senior personnel executive

Age: 58

Experience

Before joining the Dolphins in 2019, McKenzie spent seven seasons as the Oakland Raiders general manager. He was named the Sporting News and PFWA executive of the year in 2016 after a 12-4 playoff season that included seven players making the Pro Bowl.

That was the Raiders’ only winning season in his seven as his teams went 40-72.

Among the players he drafted were Khalil Mack, Derek Carr, Amari Cooper and Latavius Murray.

Before joining the Raiders, McKenzie spent 18 years with the Green Bay Packers as a pro personnel assistant, the director of pro personnel and the director of football operations. The Packers won two Super Bowls in that span.

You should know

McKenzie was an NFL linebacker who played 60 games over five seasons with the Raiders and San Francisco 49ers from 1985-92. He played in college at Tennessee.

Chicago connection

In 2014, McKenzie drafted current Bears outside linebacker Khalil Mack fifth overall.

In 2018, after coach Jon Gruden was hired and negotiations for an extension soured between the Raiders and Mack, the team traded Mack, a second-round pick and a conditional fifth-round pick in 2020 to the Bears. The Raiders received two first-round picks, a third-round pick and a sixth-round pick over the next two seasons. The Bears then gave Mack a six-year extension.

Mack was named a Pro Bowler each of his next three seasons with the Bears but missed 10 games this year with injury.

What has been said

Before firing McKenzie in December 2018, Raiders owner Mark Davis spoke to ESPN about the Raiders’ roster issues.

“It’s been all part of an evolution, but I think it’s becoming clearer and clearer to Jon (Gurden), as well, that the talent is just not here at this time,” Davis said. “The drafts did not help supplement what we were doing in the free-agent market. If you look at our roster now, it’s a bunch of free-agent, one-year guys that are mercenaries. And they’re great guys, and they’re Raiders. Once a Raider, always a Raider … but we just don’t have the overall talent of a 22-man roster.”

Before the Raiders hired McKenzie in 2012, former Packers executive Ron Wolf told the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel: “Reggie’s a tremendous evaluator. He can tell you who can play and who can’t play. That’s what it’s all about. Some can write reports but can’t tell you who can play. Whatever that is, he has that. He has a feel.”

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