UCLA filed a formal appeal with the NCAA to overturn its ruling that has made freshman sensation Shabazz Muhammad ineligible.The NCAA declared Muhammad ineligible to play after an investigation determined that he had accepted improper benefits in the form of travel expenses and lodging for unofficial visits during the recruiting period to North Carolina and Duke.UCLA coach Ben Howland said on a teleconference that the NCAA appeals committee is expected to hear the case on Friday and that the school hopes to have a decision shortly thereafter.“At this time, I’m optimistic and hopeful that everything is going to work out,” Howland said. “That’s about all I can say. Hopeful is a big part of that.”If the NCAA rules in Muhammad’s favor, he likely would become eligible immediately. But if the appeal is denied, Muhammad would have to go through the reinstatement process to regain his eligibility.The highly touted recruit has been under investigation since this summer, but less than two hours before the Bruins’ season opener last Friday, the NCAA announced Muhammad was ineligible to play.Dan Guerrero, UCLA athletic director, said last week the ruling was incorrect and unfair to Muhammad.During warmups before Tuesday’s overtime win against UC Irvine, freshmen Kyle Anderson, Jordan Adams and Tony Parker wore “Free Shabazz” T-Shirts. Howland said that public display by the first-year players was a one-time show of support.“This is their friend. They love their friend,” Howland said. But “that’s not something we’ll do in the future.”Muhammad will continue to practice with the team as he awaits the NCAA’s decision. The Bruins hope to have Muhammad available next week in the Legends Classic at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. They will face Georgetown on Monday and then either No. 1 Indiana or Georgia on Tuesday.
Paul George kept playing after colliding with Dwyane Wade late in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference finals on Tuesday night. But after the game, George said he briefly lost consciousness, a possible sign of a concussion.Here’s the collision (which came in the fourth quarter of Miami’s 87-83 win over Indiana): If George did suffer a concussion, it would be just the 10th such injury this season. That’s according to a database I’ve compiled tracking injuries in the NBA over the last six seasons based on team reports.NBA players experience very few concussions compared to players in other major sports. There’s been one concussion for every 149.5 NBA games played this season. By comparison, the NFL saw a concussion occur once every 1.4 games during the 2013 season. According to my database, there have been 89 total concussions in the NBA since the start of the 2008-09 season; the NFL recently reported 228 concussions were diagnosed during the 2013 season alone, down from 261 in the previous season.In fact, the NBA’s concussion rate is the lowest among the four major U.S. leagues. According to data collected in a 2013 study, a concussion occurs in the NHL once every 20 games. And while baseball, like basketball, isn’t considered a contact sport, MLB sent 23 players to the seven-day concussion disabled list last season, generating a concussion rate of one incident for every 105.7 games.Whether or not George suffered a concussion, the Pacers may have mismanaged his injury. The NBA concussion policy, implemented during the 2011-12 season, states:If a player is suspected of having a concussion, or exhibits the signs or symptoms of concussion, they will be removed from participation and undergo evaluation by the medical staff in a quiet, distraction-free environment conducive to conducting a neurological evaluation.If George was displaying any of the symptoms he mentioned during post-game interviews, then he should have been removed from the game. Expect the Pacers’ actions and George’s eligibility for Game 3 to be under close watch until Saturday, when the series shifts to Miami.
It’s opening week in the major leagues, and we’re catching up on what baseball’s been up to over this very odd offseason — and looking forward to the season ahead. We’ve enlisted the help of our preseason forecasting model, which assesses every team and offers a projection for their 2018 campaign. I’ve also highlighted the most interesting teams and players to watch during the year, as well as the ones about which we just don’t have any clue. (¯\_(ツ)_/¯) What follows is our take on the National League — for the American League, click here. NL WestTeam to beat: Los Angeles Dodgers. At times last season, L.A. looked like it might belong among the greatest teams of all time. But it also looked like trash during one September stretch — then turned around and very nearly won the World Series. We can’t guarantee this season will hold as many ups and downs for the Dodgers, but they should be quite good once again. Start with the NL’s best projected pitcher (Clayton Kershaw), add in its top reliever (Kenley Jansen), and mix in four hitters projected for at least 3.3 WAR (Corey Seager, Cody Bellinger, Justin Turner and Yasiel Puig), and you’ve got a recipe for the top team in the National League. This division is pretty stacked in general, though, so you might see both wild-card slots go to NL West teams again. Team ¯\_(ツ)_/¯: New York Mets. Touted last season to contend for the East, the Mets got out to a miserable, injury-riddled start and never recovered. They do have a new manager now, former Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway, and pitching was the biggest issue with last year’s squad. (New York actually finished 11th in position-player wins above replacement.) But Callaway was basically the extent of the Mets’ offseason improvements, aside from re-signing ex-Met Jay Bruce and scavenging third baseman Todd Frazier and reliever Anthony Swarzak in free agency. Essentially, the Mets’ 2018 season hinges on the same factors that destroyed them in 2017: the health and effectiveness of their pitching staff. Stay tuned to see how that works out.Rebuild alert: Miami Marlins, Atlanta Braves. The Phillies had been in this category for years, but they spent the offseason finally making win-now moves. Even the Braves, with their incredible farm machine,1Even after Atlanta was punished for the international signing rule violations that got former GM John Coppolella banned for life from MLB. won’t be long for this list. But the Marlins … whoo, buddy. Miami has just begun its descent into tanking hell, with new ownership and an offseason sell-off that actually surpassed the franchise’s famous fire sale two decades ago. Our model considers the Marlins the worst team in baseball, so let the rebuild commence.Player to watch: Noah Syndergaard, Mets. Last April, “Thor” was well on his way to once again ranking among the game’s best pitchers. Then he tore a lat muscle — and wouldn’t be seen back on an MLB mound until a very odd, meaningless late-September co-start. (Don’t ask.) Syndergaard is healthy again, however, and according to FanGraphs’ numbers, he projects as the third-best pitcher in baseball. What’s more, those projections don’t factor in the fireballs he was hurling in the spring, ostensibly trying to prove he’s still the hardest-throwing starter around. (We get it, Noah.) If Syndergaard stays healthy, he should dominate.Biggest enigma: Bryce Harper, Nationals. Harper is projected to be the eighth-best position player in baseball this season, but he’s far from a sure thing. Despite being one of MLB’s most exciting players, his numbers have bounced around wildly in the past few seasons. In 2015, we saw Harper perform at a level few players have ever attained, producing 9.5 WAR with a weighted on-base average 97 percent better than league average. The following year, he was down to a measly 3.5 WAR with a weighted OBA only 12 percent above average. And last year? He hit like an MVP in the early going but was injured later in the season, ending up with 4.8 WAR and a wOBA 56 percent better than average. No player’s WAR has moved around more from season to season over the past three years, so it’s anybody’s guess where Harper will end up in 2018. Avg. Simulated SeasonChance to… TeamElo RatingWinsLossesRun Diff.Make PlayoffsWin DivisionWin World Series Team ¯\_(ツ)_/¯: Milwaukee Brewers. Milwaukee is an extremely difficult team to figure out heading into the season. The Brew Crew surprised everyone by winning 86 games last year, even leading the division as late as July 25. It also dealt aggressively over the winter, picking up both Lorenzo Cain and Christian Yelich to patrol Miller Park’s outfield. But the forecasters are pretty split over the Brewers’ potential in 2018. Some systems see them pushing the Cardinals and Cubs again; others think they’ll struggle to crack .500. Our aggregation of various projections calls for 83 wins, but like Minnesota in the AL, this is another forecast I suspect we’re too low on.Rebuild alert: Cincinnati Reds, Pittsburgh Pirates. The Reds have been rebuilding for a half-decade now, if we include this season — and our projections say we most definitely should. Someday, perennial MVP candidate Joey Votto could play for a winning team again, but it probably won’t be this year (and it might not be for Cincinnati, either). Meanwhile, the Pirates are just embarking on their rebuilding journey, having traded away franchise cornerstone Andrew McCutchen and ace Gerrit Cole. Pittsburgh probably could have made one last run at the playoffs this year if it had hung on to its stars, but that would have required everything to go right. Instead, general manager Neal Huntington opted to close the book on the franchise’s best period since the early 1990s.Player to watch: Jose Quintana, Cubs. When the Cubs picked up Quintana from the White Sox at last season’s trade deadline for a handful of prospects, it was about more than just renting help for the stretch run in 2017. Quintana’s contract extends through this year, with team options for 2019 and 2020 as well, so the Cubs were locking down one of the game’s most valuable arms for the long haul. According to FanGraphs, Quintana is projected to be a top-10 pitcher by WAR this season. Along with new teammate Yu Darvish, he should help Chicago recapture some of the form of its banner 2016 campaign that produced the third-best rotation in baseball.Biggest enigma: Kyle Schwarber, Cubs. Schwarber’s career has already gone through so many twists and turns, it’s hard to remember that he’s still just 25 years old, with a shade over two years of MLB service time. Schwarber flashed outstanding potential at the plate in a half-season of action in 2015, and he provided instant memories when he returned from injury to hit .412 in the 2016 World Series. But a cold start buried his 2017 numbers, even though he hit quite well from July onward. Toss in an offseason of serious weight loss, and it seems like Schwarber is poised for a big breakout season — but still, FanGraphs’ projections see him generating between 0.9 and 3.0 WAR, so he’s stuck on the enigma list for now. Diamondbacks15238577+3843193 How Elo is forecasting the NL Central race How Elo is forecasting the NL East race NL EastTeam to beat: Washington Nationals. Aside from a stunning implosion in 2015 and a distant runner-up finish to the Atlanta Braves (remember that?) in 2013, the Nats have owned this division for most of the decade. For at least one more season, things should play out basically the same way. Washington returns essentially all of the core that won 97 ballgames a year ago, plus it’ll have leadoff man Adam Eaton back after a knee injury cost him most of last season. Nobody quite knows what to do with the Mets (see below), and the Phillies are finally on the rise. But it would take another unlikely confluence of underperformance from the Nationals and a breakout elsewhere for anybody to catch Washington this year. The Nats should savor it while it lasts — with Bryce Harper and others due for free agency after the season and Philadelphia and Atlanta soon emerging from their tanking projects, this division could look very different in a few years. But for now, it’s all Washington. How Elo is forecasting the NL West race Mets14917983-2124141 TeamElo RatingWinsLossesRun Diff.Make PlayoffsWin DivisionWin World Series Reds14657290-8783<1 Dodgers15689765+14581%63%13% Avg. Simulated SeasonChance to… Rockies15038082-92691 Braves14747587-58158<1 Pirates14837785-41186<1 Marlins14436795-12753<1 Nationals15469369+11173%62%8% Brewers15108379+1534142 TeamElo RatingWinsLossesRun Diff.Make PlayoffsWin DivisionWin World Series NL CentralTeam to beat: Chicago Cubs. Last year’s Cubs suffered one of the worst championship hangovers in baseball history, dragging them down from the historic heights they’d reached in 2016. (Note: They still won 92 games. Everything’s relative.) But between the offseason and last year’s trade deadline, Chicago now boasts a revamped pitching staff to go with a young core of position-player talent that already ranks among baseball’s best. The Cardinals, eternal archnemesis to the Cubs, are shaping up for a resurgent season as well — and who knows what to make of the Brewers (more on them later) — so this division could make for an exciting summer. But out of that triad of contenders, the Cubs are clearly the favorites to win the Central crown. Avg. Simulated SeasonChance to… Phillies14907983-1924141 Giants14947884-272281 Cardinals15228676+4345223 Cubs15589567+12776%55%10% Padres14556993-11562<1 Team ¯\_(ツ)_/¯: San Francisco Giants. The Giants’ weird run of even-year success seemed poised to end this season after the team sputtered to 64 wins a year ago. But San Francisco refused to let one of the most disappointing campaigns in recent history deter them. No, the Giants went out and acquired a bunch of recognizable names over the winter, including potential future Hall of Famers Andrew McCutchen and Evan Longoria. Will their efforts work? Well, PECOTA lists the Giants on the periphery of the playoffs. But other projections are less bullish. Also working against San Francisco: Only six teams in history have gone from 85 or more wins2Per 162 games. in one season to 70 or fewer the next, then back to 85 or more the season after that. A spring training injury to ace Madison Bumgarner — see below — isn’t helping matters, either.Rebuild alert: San Diego Padres. San Diego is perpetually rebuilding — it hasn’t finished above .500 since 2010 — and the Padres were dealt another blow3Probably. when Japanese two-way prospect Shohei Ohtani spurned them this winter. But the team has ranked third in Keith Law’s farm-system rankings in back-to-back years now, helping produce a few encouraging prospects who might be part of the next contending Padres team. That team probably won’t come along this season, though: Our model assigns the Padres the lowest division-title probability of any team in the National League.Player to watch: Corey Seager, Dodgers. Los Angeles has so many stars at its disposal that, Clayton Kershaw aside, it can sometimes be difficult for them to get their proper due. Take Seager, a slick-fielding, great-hitting, 23-year-old shortstop who ranks fifth among position players in WAR over the past two seasons. A player like that would be the centerpiece of most teams, but Seager finished behind three teammates (and tied with another) in MVP voting last year. Sure, some of that owed to Seager missing time with elbow and back problems. But when he’s healthy, Seager ought to be in the running with Kershaw for the title of L.A.’s best player.Biggest enigma: Madison Bumgarner, Giants. No pitcher in baseball looks more lights-out when he’s at his best than Bumgarner, whose playoff exploits are the stuff of legend. But that peak performance hasn’t always translated fully in the regular season, where Bumgarner ranks only 15th among qualified starters in fielding-independent pitching since his rookie season of 2010. Beyond that, his customary durability faltered last season, as a dirt bike accident landed him on the disabled list for several months with shoulder and rib injuries. And just this week, a stray line drive broke a finger on Bumgarner’s throwing hand, costing him an estimated six to eight weeks of action. If Bumgarner doesn’t dominate when he returns, the Giants’ bounce-back season might be doomed to failure.Check out our latest MLB predictions.
For the second straight year, the Ohio State men’s hockey team has a fierce competition at goalie. Junior Dustin Carlson and sophomore Cal Heeter are again battling for time between the pipes.“I got my chance last year to play, I played the first game at Denver and the next game in Michigan,” Heeter said. “Then Dusty [Carlson] really got on a roll and coaches just stuck with him.”Carlson went on to have one of the best seasons in OSU history. He recorded 21 wins, fourth in program history, and four shutouts, which is third in program history. Carlson’s 1,014 saves last season ranked second in the conference and fifth in program history.Consequently, Heeter finished the season with only three starts. However, with the new season, the competition has been renewed.Heeter said he was told at the end of last season “If you come in and work hard you’re going to have your chances to play and you’ll just have to prove yourself in games.”So far this season, Heeter has taken full advantage of his opportunities winning two of his three starts. His wins came against No. 3 Denver in a 4-0 victory and against Lake Superior State by a score of 4-3.While Heeter has thrived in the early season, Carlson has struggled. Carlson has failed to record a win in his three starts this season, but his record isn’t necessarily due to his own play, coach John Markell said.“One guy right now is the recipient of more goals than the other,” Markell said. The Buckeyes have scored nine goals in Heeter’s three starts while scoring just four goals in Carlson’s.“Both of them are going to have the opportunity to play and that’s part of being a team,” Markell said. So far, the teammates seem unaffected by the rotation.“As far as playing one game a weekend, I think in some ways its easier,” Heeter said. “But if they call on me to play two, that’s not going to bother me either.”The duo also seems to have embraced the situation, and worked with each other to improve. “It’s a healthy competition between us. We push each other to be the best,” Heeter said.Heeter and Carlson will continue to push each other in the Buckeyes’ next two games against No. 11 Notre Dame. The games are Friday at 7:35 p.m. and Saturday at 5:05 p.m. at Notre Dame.
Former Ohio State football player Tracy Sprinkle pleaded no contest to a reduced charge and had one felony charge dismissed Thursday in a Lorain County court, according to multiple reports.Sprinkle was originally charged with rioting, failure to disperse, possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of cocaine after an early morning fight July 5 outside a Lorain, Ohio, bar. The reduced charge is for failure to comply.According to the reports, Sprinkle received a 30-day suspended sentence in addition to a $500 fine and two years of probation. The felony charge for possession of cocaine was dropped.Sprinkle sent a tweet from his Twitter handle, @TSprinkle93, Thursday evening that read: “I thank everyone for the love, support, and prayers at one of the lowest moments in my life.. May God bless you all!”The Elyria High School graduate was initially kicked off the team July 6, but according to an OSU spokesman, coach Urban Meyer would evaluate that status after Sprinkle’s legal issues were resolved. Meyer reiterated that statement Monday at the Big Ten Media Days in Chicago.“Tracy Sprinkle is no longer with the program, and I will readdress it if there’s some changes,” Meyer said. “That’s all I know. That’s the way we handle our situations.”An OSU spokesman said in an email he did not have any further information regarding Sprinkle’s status with the team Friday morning.Sprinkle did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Members of the OSU football team huddle around coach Urban Meyer during the first day of fall practice Aug. 4 at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center in Columbus.Credit: Tim Moody / Sports editorAfter the departure of four starters from the 2013 Ohio State football team’s offensive line, coach Urban Meyer has his eye on one slot in particular.“The left guard on offense, that’s the one,” Meyer said Monday after the team’s first practice of fall camp. “If I had to say where is all the focus, to me it’s at left guard.”Meyer went on to compliment a few different position groups, including the defensive line, linebackers, safeties and running backs, but went back to the importance of the battle for left guard duties.He said four players, including two in senior Joel Hale and redshirt-junior Chase Farris who have spent time as defensive linemen for OSU, have a chance to start. Meyer said the other contenders are redshirt-junior Antonio Underwood and redshirt-freshman Billy Price.Outside of left guard, Meyer touched on position battles at safety and punt return for the Buckeyes heading into the 2014 season. He said the battle for the two starting spots at safety is still up in the air, with three returning players and a true freshman fighting for playing time.“All three, that’s a three-man race right now, and all three of them think they’re going to play,” Meyer said of redshirt-sophomore Tyvis Powell, sophomore Cam Burrows and sophomore Vonn Bell. “And you throw (freshman) Erick Smith chomping at the bit, too — you’ve just got to keep them healthy.”Powell totaled 48 tackles in 2013 to lead that group, while Burrows and Bell combined for 30 tackles. Powell had a game-sealing interception on a 2-point try against Michigan, and Bell recorded a pick in OSU’s Orange Bowl loss to Clemson.According to Meyer, sophomore H-back Dontre Wilson is the front-runner at punt return, but there are a handful of players vying for a chance. He named off redshirt-junior wide receiver Corey Smith, redshirt-freshman H-back Jalin Marshall and freshman cornerback Marshon Lattimore as potential competition for Wilson.“You got some really talented guys,” Meyer said of the group.Smith and Marshall both redshirted last season, while Wilson was the team’s leading kick returner but has not returned a punt in his Buckeye career.While many of those position battles were on display during the evening session of Monday’s practice, the majority of the OSU freshmen took part in a practice session in the morning.“Really good first day with the young guys,” Meyer said of the early practice.The Buckeye coach said it’s still early but added he was “really impressed” with how the freshmen performed. He saved special praise for a handful of the newcomers, including Lattimore and Smith.At least two true freshmen had a chance to practice with the returnees in the evening, which Meyer attributed to their maturity. Both freshman linebacker Raekwon McMillan and freshman wide receiver Johnnie Dixon could be seen on the field throughout practice.“They’re just guys that are over 3.0 students, take care of their business,” Meyer said. “They act like pros, they act like grown men, so we let them practice with the grown men today.”One addition to the OSU roster for fall camp was redshirt-freshman defensive lineman Tracy Sprinkle, who had previously been dismissed from the team following an arrest. Meyer said Sprinkle lost his summer scholarship and will be suspended for OSU’s first game.“He’s got, every week, community service and a multitude of other things to take care of business before he’ll ever see the field,” he said.Among other notes from Monday’s press conference, Meyer confirmed offensive lineman Tommy Brown had decided to transfer away from OSU. He also said senior quarterback Braxton Miller is “100 percent” but added that he wasn’t at his sharpest in his first practice after missing the entire spring due to shoulder surgery.According to a Monday OSU press release, Brown isn’t the only Buckeye no longer playing for the team. Senior tight end J.T. Moore had to end his career due to continuing knee issues, but the release said he will still graduate from OSU in December.The release also said defensive lineman Michael Hill was granted a medical redshirt for the 2013 season and will therefore have four years of eligibility remaining. Additionally, freshman Sam Hubbard is currently listed as a linebacker after originally being slated to play tight end for the Buckeyes.OSU is scheduled to return to practice Tuesday for the second of 18 practice days before the season kicks off.The Buckeyes’ 2014 schedule is set to kick off Aug. 30 against Navy in Baltimore. The game is scheduled to start at noon.
Ohio State senior guard Kelsey Mitchell (3) takes the ball down the court in the game against Penn State on Jan. 31. Ohio State won 94-64. James King | Sports DirectorFor the first time in the history of the women’s basketball program, Ohio State has a four-time All-American.Guard Kelsey Mitchell was selected as an Associated Press second-team All-American after her senior season in which she averaged 24.3 points per game, the third-most in the country. She was named a second-team All-American in 2015 and 2017, and was a first-team All-American in 2016.In all four years of her career, Mitchell averaged at least 22 points per game and her team made the NCAA tournament after missing it the year prior to her arrival.Mitchell and the Buckeyes suffered a disappointing loss to Central Michigan in the second round of the NCAA to end the season and the star guard’s career. Despite the abrupt end to her career, Mitchell finished her career ranked second in NCAA history with 3,402 career points. She also holds the record for most 3-pointers both made and attempted (497-for-1286) and ended her career on a 92-game streak with a made triple, the longest in NCAA history.She earned the Big Ten Player of the Year Award in 2015 and 2017 and was named conference player of the year by the coaches this season. The first team consisted of South Carolina forward A’ja Wilson, UConn forward Katie Lou Samuelson, Mississippi State guard Victoria Vivians, Louisville guard Asia Durr and Oregon guard Sabrina Ionescu. Baylor forward Kalani Brown, Iowa forward Megan Gustafson, Notre Dame guard Arike Ogunbowale and UConn guard Gabby Williams joined Mitchell on the second team.With her collegiate career now complete, Mitchell will realign her focus and direct her attention on preparing for the WNBA draft. She is viewed as one of the top two prospects, along with Wilson, in the 2018 WNBA Draft.
Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. Home Secretary Amber Rudd has authorised the extradition of Lauri Love to the US, where he is accused of computer hacking offences, the Home Office has said.Love, who has Asperger syndrome, is alleged to have stolen huge amounts of data from US agencies including the Federal Reserve, the US Army, the Department of Defence, Nasa and the FBI, in a spate of online attacks in 2012 and 2013.US authorities have been fighting for the 31-year-old, who lives with his parents near Newmarket in Suffolk, to face trial over charges of cyber-hacking, which his lawyers say could mean a sentence of up to 99 years in prison if he is found guilty. Love, 31, who has Aspergers, is accused of stealing sensitive data from Nasa and the US militaryCredit:Lauren Hurley/PA Wire All we are asking for is British justice for a British citizenRev Alexander Love A Home Office spokesman said: “On Monday 14 November, the Secretary of State, having carefully considered all relevant matters, signed an order for Lauri Love’s extradition to the United States.”Mr Love has been charged with various computer hacking offences which included targeting US military and federal government agencies.”District Judge Nina Tempia ruled that Mr Love could be extradited during a hearing at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on September 16. Following the ruling, Mrs Rudd had two months to order the extradition of Mr Love, who could face the possibility of three separate trials in different jurisdictions.Mr Love, who also suffers from depression and eczema, has said that a jail term in the US could cause his health to deteriorate and would lead to a mental breakdown or suicide.It is alleged that between October 2012 and October 2013, Mr Love placed hidden “shells” or “backdoors” within the networks he compromised, allowing them to return and steal confidential data.He is accused of causing “millions of dollars” worth of damage.Mr Love is expected to appeal against the decision.Responding to the announcement, the Rev Alexander Love, Mr Love’s father, told the Press Association: “It was going to happen – it was inevitable – but it’s still painful. I cannot begin to express how much sorrow it causes me.”He added: “All we are asking for is British justice for a British citizen.”Barry Sheerman, one of the more than 100 MPs who have signed a letter calling on US President Barack Obama to block Mr Love’s extradition, said he was “deeply disappointed” at the decision.The Labour MP for Huddersfield said: “We are still keeping up the pressure. We are getting more and more MPs to sign the letter to President Obama.”He said he is “deeply disappointed” at the decision, adding: “The pressure continues, we won’t give up.”
The couple were married in August 1999 at Babington House, a Georgian country house located in Somerset, and have two children together.In 2003, they split briefly after Ms Ball revealed that she had been having an affair with DJ Dan Peppe, a close friend of her husband’s, but they reconciled a few months later. Until last summer, their relationship seemed stable, with Ms Ball saying it would “take something pretty mammoth to rock us now”. pic.twitter.com/wa5Zqh5V5S— Zoe Ball (@ZoeTheBall) September 24, 2016 A friend of Ms Ball told The Sun: “Zoe is overcome with grief. She is completely and utterly devastated.“Billy had made her happy again after the most horrendous year when her marriage broke down.“This was completely out of the blue. She had no feeling that this was coming and is in total shock.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. The Metropolitan Police said the death was not being treated as suspicious.A spokeswoman said: “Police were called at 18:40hrs on Thursday, May 4 to a residential address on Lower Richmond Road, SW15 following reports of a man found deceased. Zoe Ball and Norman Cook, pictured in 2015, separated in September last year Credit:Karwai Tang/Wire Image On Thursday, Ms Ball shared a Samaritans tweet featuring a light sabre that read: “If it really doesn’t feel like the force is with you today, we’re here and ready to listen.” Zoe Ball presenting Strictly Come Dancing It Takes Two in September last year – wearing her wedding ringCredit: pixel8000 If it really doesn’t feel like the force is with you today, we’re here and ready to listen #TalkToUs ☎ 116123 #MayTheFourthBeWithYou pic.twitter.com/hvrIEV4xHr— Samaritans (@samaritans) May 4, 2017 Ms Ball – the first female host of Radio 1’s Breakfast Show and a Strictly Come Dancing presenter – and Mr Cook split last September after 18 years of marriage.Posting a statement on her Twitter account, Ms Ball said it was “with great sadness” that the pair had decided to separate. “After many exciting adventures together over the last 18 years we have come to the end of our rainbow,” she added. Posting a statement on her Twitter account, Ball said it was “with great sadness” that the pair had decided to separate. “After many exciting adventures together over the last 18 years we have come to the end of our rainbow,” she added. “Officers and the London Ambulance Service attended. A man, believed to be aged 40, was pronounced dead at the scene.”The death is not being treated as suspicious.” Zoe Ball, the radio and television presenter, is “overcome with grief” at the sudden death of her boyfriend.The 46-year-old began dating Billy Yates, a cameraman, after she and her husband Norman Cook, the DJ Fatboy Slim, separated last year.Mr Yates, 40, was discovered dead at his home in Putney, south London, on Thursday night.Ms Ball is said to be “completely and utterly devastated” and posted a picture of a pink flower with the caption “my sweet love” on Instagram on Friday morning.
Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. She wrote on Facebook: “My Biggest Girl went into town with her friend after school yesterday. They went around the shops to try to find a birthday present for another friend of theirs. Dr Eric Robinson, who led the study, said mannequins on UK high streets were ‘disturbingly thin’ The team at Liverpool University concluded that the body size of mannequins used to advertise female fashion is unrealistic, and would be considered “medically unhealthy” in humans. Dr Eric Robinson, who led the study, said mannequins on UK high streets were “disturbingly thin”.He said: “Because ultrathin ideals encourage the development of body image problems in young people, we need to change the environment to reduce emphasis on the value of extreme thinness.”As a society we should be taking measures to stop this type of reinforcement.”Their comments come just weeks after high street fashion chain Topshop hit the headlines for using emaciated-looking mannequins, which social media users compared to victims of ‘famine’. The shop had promised to stop using stick-thin mannequins in 2015.Mother Zoe Mason spoke of how her 15-year-old daughter was shocked when she saw the figures in a shop window in Herefordshire. “I was quite taken aback when they first things that tumbled out of my girl’s mouth were words full of crossness. She thrust her phone under my nose and showed me this picture and said,’Look at that, Mum! I mean just LOOK at it. Me and M couldn’t believe it as we walked past! I mean, it’s not surprising that so many of my friends think they are fat or just don’t like their bodies.”Her post was been shared hundreds of times as parents agreed that the mannequins were too thin. A leading UK youth charity, branding the ultra-thin mannequins “insidious.”Denise Hatton, Chief Executive of the National Council of YMCAs, said: “Once again young women and girls are presented with an ‘ideal’ body type that’s unrealistic and unhealthy for the majority of people to achieve.”Only ever seeing one body type in fashion advertising, particularly an extremely thin body type, risks creating an insidious pressure to attempt to become something we’re not.” Female mannequins used in high street stores appear “severely underweight” and put pressure on women to be unhealthily slim, according to a new study.Researchers assessed the body size of male and female mannequins in a survey of national fashion retailers on the high street of two cities in the UK.Published in The Journal of Eating Disorders, the study found that 100 per cent of the female mannequins surveyed represented an underweight body size.The average male mannequin body size was significantly larger than the average female mannequin, and only eight per cent of male mannequins represented an underweight body size.