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Experience, and a trip to Bears training camp, have Tyler Gleyzer thinking big for Highland Park: ‘Win conference, make the playoffs and beat Deerfield.’

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Experience, And A Trip To Bears Training Camp, Have Tyler Gleyzer Thinking Big For Highland Park: ‘Win Conference, Make The Playoffs And Beat Deerfield.’
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Highland Park’s visit to Chicago Bears training camp on July 27 was more than a thrill for junior linebacker Tyler Gleyzer.

The opportunity to see professional players work provided a valuable lesson for him.

“They go full-out all the time,” Gleyzer said. “I felt like we have to mirror this. This is something we have to do.”

The Giants plan to use what they learned at Halas Hall in Lake Forest and the experience they gained a year ago, when 12 sophomores started, to pursue the Central Suburban North title and more this season.

“We’re going to win conference, make the playoffs and beat Deerfield,” Gleyzer said, referring to Highland Park’s Township High School District 113 rival.

Deerfield beat the Giants 35-6 and won the Central Suburban North last season. The teams will meet in Deerfield on Sept. 30.

Highland Park’s season starts with a home game against Leyden on Aug. 26, not quite two months after the mass shooting at the city’s Fourth of July parade. School administration limited discussion for this story to football.

First-year coach Anthony Kopp, a former Highland Park quarterback who was promoted from offensive coordinator in June, also took note of how the Bears practice and intends to implement that into the Giants’ workouts. He has high expectations for this season.

“We’re going to push them every day to work like the Bears,” Kopp said. “If we strive for that, we can do anything. We want to be one of the final eight teams at state.”

The Giants’ work began long before Bears training camp, however. Since the 2021 season ended, Gleyzer and his teammates spent time in the weight room getting stronger and quicker.

“Now the juniors are ready to step up as leaders,” senior wide receiver Emmet Pulte said. “They learned a lot as sophomores. We’ve all gotten better and stronger.”

Among those juniors is quarterback David Finfer. At this point last year, Finfer didn’t anticipate starting at quarterback, but he moved into the role as the season progressed. He said he’s ready to lead the offense.

“That experienced really helped,” Finfer said. “Now I am much more vocal as a leader. We’re going to hit the ground running.”

Other juniors whom Kopp expects to contribute include wide receiver/defensive back Nicholas Blumer, wide receiver/defensive back Andrew Cortes, two-way lineman Larry Jenkins, running back/cornerback Nikko Rosenbloom and offensive lineman Eli Secher.

Kopp said all elements of Gleyzer’s play have improved. He is “bigger, stronger, faster and smarter” than he was a year ago, Kopp said.

Pulte and junior quarterback David Finfer said they like how Gleyzer dissects offenses, gets to the ball and makes tackles with an exclamation point.

“You get free, and everything feels great,” Gleyzer said. “It’s what we have to do to win the battle.”

Steve Sadin is a freelance reporter for the News-Sun.

Team: Highland Park.

2021 record: 4-5.

Offensive leaders: David Finfer, junior, quarterback; Emmet Pulte, senior, wide receiver; Nikko Rosenbloom, junior, running back; Eli Secher, junior, offensive line.

Defensive leaders: Tyler Gleyzer, junior, linebacker; Larry Jenkins, junior, defensive lineman; Jacques Marks, senior, defensive lineman.

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MLB’s new playoff format has done nothing to increase end-of-season intrigue

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Mlb’s New Playoff Format Has Done Nothing To Increase End-Of-Season Intrigue
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With about a week and a half until the playoffs begin, and the playoff teams all but determined already, Major League Baseball has to accept the truth.

Its new postseason format didn’t do much at all to increase end-of-season intrigue.

This is the first year that the league is letting 12 teams into the dance, and it’s easy to recognize who at least 11 of those teams will be. The race for the final National League wild card spot is the only do or die scenario left, and even that’s not as juicy as fans would hope. The so-so Milwaukee Brewers come into Monday — which kicks off the last full week of the regular season — 1.5 games behind the Phillies for the final postseason spot.

The San Diego Padres are only 1.5 games up on the Phillies, so it’s certainly not out of the realm of possibility for them to miss the playoffs. But there’s no question that the final two NL wild card berths (the Braves or Mets will get the first one) will go to two teams from the San Diego, Philadelphia and Milwaukee group. After the Brewers, the next team in the standings is the San Francisco Giants, who are under .500. In terms of talent, the Brewers are much closer to those Giants than they are to the NL’s legitimate contenders.

In the American League, there’s an even bigger gap. The Seattle Mariners currently occupy the final seat on the ship, with the Baltimore Orioles four games out. Seattle owns the tiebreaker over the Orioles too — if two teams finish with the same record, their head-to-head regular season matchups determine who would get in the playoffs, not a tiebreaker game — so that lead is more like five games. Again, the next team in line is under .500, the floundering Chicago White Sox at 76-77.

Rather than the expanded playoffs keeping more teams in the hunt, it’s shown that less is more when sending out postseason invitations. It is both increasingly obvious that there are not 12 truly good MLB teams, and that limiting the wild card berths to two or one makes for a better finish. Under last year’s format, which granted playoff entry to two wild card teams in each league instead of three, the battle for the last NL spot would be a bloodbath right now. San Diego, Philadelphia and Milwaukee are separated by just three total games in the loss column, giving each team a realistic shot of swapping places with one another down the stretch, whether that means climbing the standings or plummeting down them.

If those three teams were fighting for one spot rather than two, all of their remaining games would be that much more tense, creating the exact situation that MLB wants. Instead, the Phillies have gone 3-7 in their last ten games and not lost their place in the playoff picture. Last year, San Diego passing them would mean the Padres get in while the Phillies stay home. This year, it’s just the difference between the fifth and the sixth seed, and you can make a very compelling case that the sixth seed is better anyway.

The Mariners have also had the newfound luxury of playing very poorly for most of September without it hurting their playoff chances. The M’s are 11-11 this month, having recently lost series to the Angels, Athletics and Royals. That would typically be a code red disaster at this point of the schedule. But with the extra wild card team now, the Mariners’ odds of making the playoffs, per FanGraphs, have gone from 97.3% on Sept. 1 to…99.9% on Sept. 26.

In other words, treading water has proven just as effective as actually winning games. By virtue of there simply being fewer games left on the schedule now than there were at the beginning of the month, plus the teams behind them not being particularly playoff-worthy either, both the Mariners and Phillies have been able to play subpar baseball for weeks without having to fret too much about it costing them their shot at the postseason. Philadelphia is 10-11 in September, a month that’s seen them put together a three-game losing streak and a five-game losing streak. No big deal, as nestling into the sixth seed means avoiding the Mets or Braves in the first round and not seeing the Dodgers until a potential National League Championship Series.

Same thing goes for the Mariners, who, if they end up in the sixth seed, would play Cleveland in the first round instead of Tampa Bay or Toronto. Beating Cleveland, who they went 6-1 against this year, would then earn the Mariners a date with the much more beatable Yankees rather than the death machine in Houston.

So, for those keeping score at home, the new format will let mediocre teams into the playoffs, has done nothing to increase late-September drama, and in some ways has incentivized being a lower seed. The team with the worst record among its league’s division winners is no longer even guaranteed a Division Series. This year, that means the Guardians and Cardinals could both be going home in the wild card round rather than getting the five-game series they deserve for winning their division. The fifth seed in the National League gets a bit of a punishment, too, as they’ll get matched up in the wild card round against either the Mets or Braves, who might both end up with 100 wins.

That Mets-Braves power struggle is one of the best things going right now, but a tug of war for the NL East crown would have been possible last year, the year before that, and 20 years before that. The new playoff bracket had no impact on division races, which MLB knew. But it also, tragically, seems to have had no impact on the wild card races either. While Milwaukee is still technically very much in it, for weeks now it’s felt like we’ve known exactly who’d be in the playoffs, the only question is what order they’ll finish in.

Maybe next year will bring some more spice to the end of the season, but this year can go down as a definitive whiff.

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Inver Grove Heights homicide victim, 43, was shot in torso, authorities say

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Inver Grove Heights Homicide Victim, 43, Was Shot In Torso, Authorities Say
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Authorities on Monday released additional details on the homicide victim found in an Inver Grove Heights home over the weekend, saying he was a 43-year-old man who was shot in the torso.

Michael Chang-Beom Lee died of a single gunshot wound of the torso early Saturday at 2133 78th Court E., the Hennepin County medical examiner’s office said. He was pronounced dead at 2:27 a.m.

Three people have been arrested in connection with Lee’s killing, which was not a random act, according to Inver Grove Heights police. They have not been charged as of Monday.

Police said Saturday in a statement that officers went to the home just after 2 a.m. after someone called 911 and hung up. When they arrived they found a man on the floor who was unresponsive and later pronounced dead at the scene.

Officers responding to the 911 call stopped a vehicle leaving the area with three adults who were detained, questioned and then booked on suspicion of murder.

Logan David Slack and Fotini Anest West, both 25 and of Minneapolis, are being held at the Dakota County jail on suspicion of first-degree murder and first-degree burglary.

Sean Richard Lumley, 30, of Monticello was booked on suspicion of aiding and abetting first-degree murder and then released from custody, police said.

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Live now! Chris Perkins and Dave Hyde break down game vs. Bills and preview Thursday night’s matchup with Bengals on Dolphins Deep Dive

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Live Now! Chris Perkins And Dave Hyde Break Down Game Vs. Bills And Preview Thursday Night’s Matchup With Bengals On Dolphins Deep Dive
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Introducing “Dolphins Deep Dive with Perk,” the South Florida Sun Sentinel’s new weekly Dolphins video show featuring Chris Perkins, Dave Hyde, David Furones and occasional guests.

On Monday’s show, the Dolphins writers discuss Sunday’s huge win over the Buffalo Bills. They also look ahead to Thursday night’s matchup versus the defending AFC champion Cincinnati Bengals and answer viewers’ questions.

Click here for the “Dolphins Deep Dive with Perk” video page, where you can watch the latest episode.

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Twin Cities school segregation not unconstitutional in absence of lawmaker intent, appeals court panel rules

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Twin Cities School Segregation Not Unconstitutional In Absence Of Lawmaker Intent, Appeals Court Panel Rules
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Racial segregation in Twin Cities schools does not violate the state constitution unless it can be proven that state lawmakers intentionally caused that segregation, an appeals court panel ruled Monday.

The ruling affirms a lower court’s December decision in Cruz-Guzman v. State of Minnesota, a major school segregation lawsuit that’s been winding its way through the courts and Legislature since 2015.

Attorneys for the plaintiffs and the state reached a tentative settlement in spring 2021. At a cost to the state of $63 million a year, it would have created new magnet schools, new regulations and a system of voluntary student busing in order to better integrate schools in St. Paul, Minneapolis and their suburbs.

But when legislative leaders declined to approve the settlement, plaintiffs attorney Dan Shulman asked Hennepin County District Judge Susan Robiner to decide key parts of the case without going to trial.

Specifically, he wanted her to find that school segregation is unconstitutional, even in the absence of intent or proof that state lawmakers and bureaucrats caused it.

His argument largely relied on a footnote from a 2018 state Supreme Court decision that revived the Cruz-Guzman case after Robiner had dismissed it. That footnote said it’s “self-evident” that segregated schools violate the education clause of the Minnesota Constitution.

However, Robiner in December rejected Shulman’s motion for partial summary judgment, finding that school segregation only violates the state constitution if it is “intentional.”

If Shulman is right, she wrote, the only remedy would be to redistribute Twin Cities students to different schools according to their race, which the U.S. Supreme Court has clearly said violates the 14th Amendment’s equal protection clause.

APPEALS COURT RULING

Writing for a unanimous three-judge panel on Monday, Court of Appeals Judge Mathew E. Johnson wrote that the state Supreme Court’s footnote was referring to the sort of intentional segregation found in the landmark 1954 U.S. Supreme Court decision in Brown v. Board of Education.

Shulman’s motion, on the other hand, referred to de facto segregation, where there’s no showing that state actors intentionally caused it.

“A racially imbalanced school system, by itself, is not a violation of the Education Clause of the Minnesota Constitution,” Johnson wrote.

“A racially imbalanced school system caused by intentional, de jure segregation of the type described in Brown would be a violation of the Education Clause of the Minnesota Constitution. A racially imbalanced school system caused by de facto segregation, by itself, is not a violation of the Education Clause of the Minnesota Constitution, even if state action contributed to the racial imbalance.”

Monday’s ruling does not end the case. The plaintiffs can appeal to the state Supreme Court, and even if they lose again, they still can try to prove that state actors intentionally set up a system that would result in segregation.

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All eyes on QB Tua Tagovailoa’s availability on Dolphins’ short week before Thursday game in Cincinnati

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All Eyes On Qb Tua Tagovailoa’s Availability On Dolphins’ Short Week Before Thursday Game In Cincinnati
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Miami Dolphins defensive tackle Christian Wilkins usually notes there’s a “24-hour rule” after NFL games — win or lose — before the emotions of one result must shift into preparation for the next opponent.

But even that’s too long when the Dolphins only have three days between Sunday’s thrilling 21-19 win over the AFC East Goliath Buffalo Bills and a Thursday night game at the Cincinnati Bengals.

“It’s the 12-hour rule,” said Wilkins at the news conference podium postgame, meaning the expiration time was around 4:30 a.m. Monday morning. “We just get [Sunday night], and [Monday] we’re already getting ready for the next opponent so we can turn the page and get ready for Thursday night.”

Those 72 hours between game days will be under a microscope, especially quarterback Tua Tagovailoa’s availability in Cincinnati on the quick turnaround.

Tagovailoa was initially said to have suffered a head injury when he exited at the first half’s two-minute warning after getting pushed by Bills linebacker Matt Milano, causing Tagovailoa to fall back and hit the back of his head on the turf. Tagovailoa appeared woozy and stumbled upon getting up from the hit before being escorted by trainers into the locker room.

He was cleared in concussion protocol and returned for the second half, finishing 13 of 18 for 186 yards and a touchdown pass. Tagovailoa and coach Mike McDaniel both said postgame it was actually a back injury Tagovailoa was dealing with, as the roughing-the-passer play exacerbated earlier discomfort Tagovailoa experienced in his lower back from a quarterback sneak.

The NFL Players Association on Sunday afternoon initiated an investigation of the handling of Tagovailoa’s concussion check.

“It was uncomfortable going in,” said Tagovailoa of his second half, which involved him making a stellar 45-yard throw deep over the middle to Jaylen Waddle on third-and-22 that set up a go-ahead score. “I guess you could say it was the adrenaline that was keeping me going with the throwing.”

Of his back, Tagovailoa added postgame Monday: “It’s tight. It was sore when it first happened.”

McDaniel is expected to have injury updates in a Monday afternoon news conference after a Sunday win that also had cornerback Xavien Howard (groin, cramps), tackles Terron Armstead (toe) and Greg Little (finger), guard Robert Hunt and linebacker Elandon Roberts (quadriceps) among players dealing with injuries. Nose tackle Raekwon Davis (knee) missed the game against Buffalo after entering questionable, and receiver Cedrick Wilson Jr. (ribs, toe) was limited to five offensive snaps.

This story will be updated.

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Ravens-Patriots in review: Highlights, notables and quotables from a Week 3 victory

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Ravens-Patriots In Review: Highlights, Notables And Quotables From A Week 3 Victory
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The Ravens bounced back from a gut-punch loss to the Miami Dolphins with a 37-26 road win over the New England Patriots. Quarterback Lamar Jackson threw four touchdown passes and ran for another while the defense created four turnovers on New England’s last five drives.

Players of the Week

QB Lamar Jackson: New England had no answer for Jackson, who threw for 218 yards and four touchdowns and carried 11 times for 107 yards and another score. He has 10 touchdown passes through three games and has run for at least 100 yards in two straight as he makes an early Most Valuable Player case.

S Kyle Hamilton: When wide receiver Nelson Agholor broke into open space with 5 minutes, 45 seconds left in the fourth quarter, the Patriots appeared on their way to a go-ahead touchdown. Instead, Hamilton chased him down and punched the ball free, allowing Marcus Peters to fall on it. In addition to that climactic play, the rookie gave up just one completion on 14 coverage snaps, according to Pro Football Focus.

WR Devin Duvernay: The Ravens clung to a one-point lead in the third quarter when Duvernay gave them a jolt by dancing 43 yards along the sideline on a punt return. Four plays later, he followed up with a leaping catch in the corner of the end zone for his fourth touchdown of the year. He has caught all eight balls thrown his way in three games.

Snap-Count Analysis

Cornerbacks Marlon Humphrey and Marcus Peters seemed back to full strength, playing 65 and 63 of the team’s 66 defensive snaps, respectively. With outside linebacker Justin Houston and nose tackle Michael Pierce injured, veteran defensive tackle Calais Campbell embraced a heavy workload, playing 59 snaps. Inside linebacker Josh Bynes played 71% of the team’s defensive snaps, taking on a larger role against New England’s determined running game. Outside linebacker Brandon Copeland stepped in to play 26 defensive snaps in his first game as a Raven. Rookie cornerback Jalyn Armour-Davis played just nine defensive snaps after he struggled early against DeVante Parker.

J.K. Dobbins and Justice Hill shared the workload evenly at running back, playing 26 and 29 snaps, respectively. Mike Davis played one snap. At wide receiver, Devin Duvernay played only two fewer snaps, 35, than Rashod Bateman. Rookie tight end Isaiah Likely dealt with a groin injury during the week and played 20 of 60 offensive snaps. Tight end Nick Boyle played just four snaps in his first game action of the season. Josh Oliver was on the field more than either with 24 offensive snaps. Rookie Daniel Faalele played 54 snaps at left tackle after Patrick Mekari sprained his ankle.

Number Crunch

32: Mark Andrews’ career touchdown reception total. The fifth-year tight end ranks second on the franchise’s all-time list behind Todd Heap (41) after he scored twice against the Patriots.

3: Players in league history who have thrown four touchdown passes and run for 100 yards in the same game, per ESPN Stats & Info. Lamar Jackson joined Randall Cunningham and Cam Newton with his performance Sunday.

4: Turnovers created by the Ravens defense, more than in any game last season.

5.0: Opponents’ per-carry average against the Ravens’ run defense. They ranked sixth worst in the league after Sunday’s game.

Quote of the Week

Coach John Harbaugh on Lamar Jackson: “His way is winning football. It’s fundamentally sound quarterback play. He’s running the show out there. He’s making the checks. He’s managing the clock. All the things that you would say an operator or a manager does, he’s doing all those things, too. He’s doing those things, and he’s making plays sometimes when the play doesn’t make itself.”

Next Up

Buffalo Bills at M&T Bank Stadium, Sunday, 1 p.m.

The Bills went into Week 3 widely regarded as the best team in the league after they won their first two games by a combined 55 points. But they lost a divisional showdown to the Miami Dolphins, the same team that upset the Ravens in Week 2. The Bills fell 21-19, despite outgaining the Dolphins by more than 200 yards and running 90 offensive plays to Miami’s 39.

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