Becoming a Highlander

first_imgWell here you are today. You’ve made it to this moment with all of your incredible experiences and life changing stories. How often do we take the time to think on the journey of life? As a college student I find myself constantly looking forward, but sometimes I find that I need to turn back to dust off an old part of me. I need to rediscover parts of me that I may have let fade into the blue glow of my laptop screen. As I became a graduate student I wanted to take the time to journey into myself, so taking a tip from Danny Kaye, it was time to travel.highlandscapeBecoming a Radford University Highlander, I had no choice but to grab the nearest willing soul and head to the Grayson Highlands State Park in Virginia to earn my new title. Highlands, in Scotland, originally referred to the place of the Gael’s. It was exciting to me to go because I come from an impressively Irish home. As we drove out to the southwest Virginia destination for the weekend I reflected back on my time living in the Adirondacks. It was just two months ago since I moved down here but so much has changed. In the “dacks” I had a weekly goal of seeing just how far away I could get from the nearest light bulb, a bright idea, in my opinion. I wanted to try that in my new home and luckily my partner was up for the adventure. Walking away from the car that Friday and stepping out into the highland country I could hear the wind cutting across the rolling peaks like bagpipes echoing across the land. I could feel the roots of my soul tapping into the earth beneath me with every step.The journey began on Rhododendron Trail up to Wilburn Ridge where we spent much of the day exploring the hills and taking pictures. Still admittedly a bit plugged in, it felt good to be out backpacking again, feeling that weight of the bag with each step, zoning in and out of trail vision, talking about our class projects as we went along. There is always something incredible about stepping outside and this trip was no exception. Our conversation became more meaningful as it drifted toward true purpose and what life is for each of us. These are the shared experiences that Twitter and Facebook will never be able to even shake a stick at.thedustytrailAs we opened up on the trail, I realized I was losing touch with why I was pursing my master’s degree. Progress was pulling me in fast and this trip reminded me that I’m studying so I can help people find value in their lives and to help people realize their potential, not just to run analyses and add business value. Sure those things are important and critical to master, but I shouldn’t lose sight of my forest through the trees. Hiking along a smile came to my face because I got just what I came for. Nature and human connection, once again giving me the perspective I needed to turn on my own light bulb, ironically far away from all the electric ones.As we continued on that weekend, I found that the highlands left me with a sense of opportunity and openness. The seemingly endless hills alive with wild ponies and littered with beautiful rock formations are truly inspiring. I even made friends with a young colt on the trip that couldn’t help but follow us along the trail until running into other backpackers on their way to adventure. It’s no wonder the Gaelic culture is so beautiful, I’m proud to be a part of it and grateful to be able to have a glimpse of a land similar to its origins right here in the Blue Ridge Mountains.nicecouchFor my first blog, I wanted to share an example of what drives me to play outside in our backyard every chance I get. Maybe next time you’re out you can learn something you forgot along the way too. Now go outside and play!last_img read more

QPR v Man City line-ups: Zamora in, fit-again duo on bench, City trio out

first_imgBobby Zamora is restored to the QPR starting line-up for the game against Manchester City, who are without Vincent Kompany, David Silva and Aleksander Kolarov.Zamora’s return means Junior Hoilett drops to the bench, while fit-again former City players Joey Barton and Nedum Onuoha are also among the Rangers substitutes. QPR: Green, Isla, Caulker, Dunne, Yun, Vargas, Sandro, Henry, Fer, Zamora, Austin. Subs: McCarthy, Hill, Phillips, Barton, Onuoha, Kranjcar, Hoilett. Man City: Hart, Sagna, Clichy, Demichelis, Mangala, Fernando, Fernandinho, Nasri, Navas, Toure, Aguero. Subs: Caballero, Zabaleta, Milner, Dzeko, Jovetic, Lampard, Boyata. Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img

Baseball Former bigleaguer Matt Angle returns to roots to help coach Ohio

Former Ohio State and Baltimore Orioles’ outfielder Matt Angle (38) is congratulated in the dugout after hitting a lead off home run against Detroit Tigers pitcher Justin Verlander during the first-inning at Comerica Park in Detroit, on Sept. 24, 2011. Credit: Courtesy of TNSEvery kid playing catch in the backyard with his or her father dreams about the chance to make it to the big leagues.For most, those hopeful thoughts are virtually unattainable.But there are some who make it.Former Ohio State outfielder Matt Angle was able to achieve that goal. He spent three years playing at the school of his dreams, was drafted by the Baltimore Orioles and debuted with the team in 2011, becoming the first OSU outfielder since Nick Swisher to reach the majors.But for Angle, the dream he was living started well before he was drafted.Growing up in a suburban community in Whitehall, Ohio — a small city east of Columbus — Angle had grown up a fan of the Buckeyes. Both his grandfather and his aunt had graduated from OSU, and Angle said he was excited to play at the school he grew up loving.“It was awesome,” Angle said. “I grew up a Buckeye fan. Being able to have your family and friends come watch and still be close to home, it was a great experience.”Angle found a great deal of success at OSU, almost immediately. As a freshman in 2005, he started in 40 games in right field and quickly established himself as a bonafide leadoff hitter for the Buckeyes.On Apr. 27, 2005, in the second game of a doubleheader against Eastern Michigan, Angle was batting leadoff and starting in right field. For the remaining 27 games of the season, and essentially for the rest of his Buckeye career, Angle was found atop the lineup. But despite all the success, it was not until he participated in the Cape Cod League in 2006 that he started to believe a professional career in baseball was ahead of him.“(I) went out there, performed well, and that’s when you’re matched up against some of the best players in the country,” Angle said. Then, on June 7, 2007, the phone call finally came through, alerting Angle that he had been selected with the fifth pick in the seventh round of the draft, 219th overall by the Baltimore Orioles. Angle remembers exactly where he was when he got the life-changing call.“I was actually at my house on campus,” he said. “Just with some roommates and some buddies, and then got together with my family after.”Angle describes the moment as a great and memorable experience.“It’s something that you work hard for, something that you always dream about — the opportunity to play professionally, and it was something I’ll never forget,” he said.After being drafted, it took Angle some time to reach the majors. He debuted in 2007 at Low Class-A and the next three-and-a-half seasons traveled through various levels of the minors before finally landing in Baltimore.For many minor-leaguers, the travel can be an unwanted burden that puts stress on the family life, but Angle and his wife saw it as a great opportunity to see many different parts of the United States.“(My wife) was able to see a lot of cities and a lot of places that she wouldn’t have been able to see,” he said. “Looking back now, I think you appreciate it more — some of the trips, some of the cities, some of the opportunities. Time to spend together that you do while you were playing.”Despite the travel and most of the minor league teams being located closer to the East Coast, Angle kept to his roots and lived in Columbus throughout his playing career.“Columbus was always home,” he said. “Offseasons were always spent in Columbus, and then I would just live in whatever home city I was playing in that year. But Columbus has always been home.”On July 17, 2011, the day finally came when Angle donned an Orioles uniform and took the field at Camden Yards. He was slotted to lead off, a role in which he had grown comfortable. He went 0 for 3, but it was a day he will never forget.Orioles left fielder Matt Angle (38) bumps fists with first base coach Wayne Kirby (23) in the 7th inning after he is walked to first base by Indians’ pitcher Chad Durbin. The Baltimore Orioles defeated the Cleveland Indians, 8-3, at Oriole Park at Camden Yards in Baltimore, on July 17, 2011. Credit: Courtesy of TNS“It’s something you’re always working for,” Angle said. “My wife and my mom and uncle and cousin were able to make the trip over to Baltimore. It was a day game, I can’t remember if it was noon or 1, so it was early. Got in late the night before after getting called up so it was a quick turnaround.”And of all the teams he could have debuted against, of course it was the Ohio-based Cleveland Indians. Though Angle grew up as a Cincinnati Reds fan, it was something special for him to play against a local team.“(I was) not as much an Indians fan, but it was great growing up in Ohio to be able to make your debut against another Ohio team,” Angle said.Unfortunately for Angle, his career in the majors was short-lived. He finished the 2011 season in Baltimore and never saw another major-league at-bat. His final career stat line was .177/.293/.266, with a lone home run and 11 stolen bases.He spent four more seasons in the minors, split between the farm systems of the Los Angeles Dodgers, Miami Marlins and Oakland Athletics.But as the years wore on and it became clearer that he did not have the same skillset he had a few years earlier, Angle decided to hang up his cleats.“At that point, sometimes the game just kind of tells you,” he said. “Ideally, you would’ve loved to still been able to play longer, but sometimes the game just tells you it’s time.”Though his career as a player was over, Angle found a new career with the sport he loved. He knew he still had some unfinished business and a possible future back in Columbus.Angle left OSU a year early, without receiving his degree, so that was one of the first things he wanted to take care of when he moved back to Columbus.“It was something that was always important to me,” he said. “I actually finished my degree my last year of playing. And it was something I’ve always wanted to do. Having a degree from Ohio State means so many different things, whether it’s in the sport world or the business world.”While completing his degree in sport industry at OSU, Angle found that a job was awaiting him on the baseball team. He joined coach Greg Beals’ staff as co-video coordinator. In this position, he sits down with players to review film and helps them go through what might be wrong with their swing and how they can heat up at the plate. “My first year as the — I was more student, I was still graduating at the time — there was a lot more I was able to do on-field,” Angle said. “So you’re able to implement some things there, and now you’re just following through on the video side, suggesting, being able to give a fresh set of eyes watching the game a little bit differently.”Ohio State co-video coordinator Matt Angle in the dugout during the Buckeyes’ 2016 Big Ten tournament championship run. Credit: Courtesy of OSU AthleticsFor some of these younger players, a fresh set of eyes can be exactly what they need to help break out of a funk at the plate. Sophomore third baseman Brady Cherry said that the team benefits from having a former player with the experience at the plate.“He knows his stuff, and I think everybody here trusts him with all the knowledge that he has,” Cherry said. The experience Angle brings to the team isn’t only as a bastion of light for players going through a tough time at the plate, but it can also be a great aid to the coaching staff if it can’t seem to get through to the player.“Matt’s a great resource for me too — just in different approaches, how to approach hitters, and how we can go about attacking a week and attacking a practice plan, and helping get our guys as ready to play as possible,” Beals said.For Angle, his time spent helping coach younger players at OSU has been well spent, and he seems to like the work here. Asked what he will be doing after coaching at OSU, Angle said he doesn’t know.“That’s the great question. You know, we’ll see,” Angle said. “I’ve enjoyed the last two-and-a-half, three years that I’ve been a part of the program. Right now, being fully entrenched in the season, not really thinking too far outside of that. If you have any great ideas, I’d be open.” read more

Firmino determined to end goal drought

first_imgLiverpool striker Roberto Firmino is keen to end his goal drought when they face Leicester City this weekend in the Premier League.The Brazil international will seek to end a rare goal drought when Liverpool take on Leicester although his manager Jurgen Klopp has no concerns about a drop-off in productivity.The versatile frontman has formed one of the most feared forward lines in European football over the past 12 months with Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane. And the 26-year-old, signed for £29 from Hoffenheim three years ago, has been impressive in Liverpool’s 100 percent start to the new Premier League campaign three victories and three clean sheetsYet despite scoring 27 times for last season, Firmino is still looking for his first goal of the new campaign even though Liverpool are the early Premier League pacesetters.The striker has not scored in eight games for Klopp’s side and in the Premier League has one goal in his past 10 appearances, a run that dates back to March.Roberto Firmino, LiverpoolVirgil van Dijk praises Roberto Firmino after Liverpool’s win Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Virgil van Dijk hailed team-mate Roberto Firmino after coming off the bench to inspire Liverpool to a 3-1 comeback win against Newcastle United.But Firmino’s selfless running and ability to create spaces behind defences has been singled out as one of the reasons Salah looks capable of continuing the prodigious production of last season, when he scored 44 times for Klopp in all competitions.The Liverpool boss says there is no sense of a World Cup hangover for Firmino, whose Brazil side exited the tournament at the quarter-final stage.“He had two weeks pre-season, which is quite short for a player who needs his physical fitness as much as Roberto does but I’m completely happy,” said Klopp, according to AFP.“After two weeks’ preparation and a Brazilian holiday he is much sharper and fitter than I would have expected. It is exactly how it should be in this moment and he can improve, like we all can improve.”last_img read more

Roberto Martinez impressed by Hazards performance

first_imgEden Hazard has again proven his worth to the Belgium team in their friendly game against Scotland.His coach Roberto Martinez was largely impressed by Hazard’s performance and he praised the player’s role in setting the example as the captain of the team.In the 4-0 win against Scotland, Hazard had lead the attack on the opponent until he was substituted on the 56th minute of the game.Hazard scored after Romelu Lukaku had opened the scoreline in favour of his team. He also made an assist for Michy Batshuayi.FourFourTwo reports Martinez’s response after he was asked whether the Chelsea star man had worked too hard on himself ahead of the friendly: “I don’t see that as a negative. He’s in a good moment and he’s carried on from where he was in the World Cup.James Rodriguez, Real MadridZidane hails ‘quality’ James Rodriguez after Real Madrid’s win Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Zinedine Zidane reserved special praise for James Rodriguez after his starring role in Real Madrid’s 3-2 win over Levante.“When you’re a captain, you have to set the standard in that sort of manner. It’s dangerous when you go into a football match not giving everything.“Hazard is giving what you want from a captain. I don’t think there was anything wrong with him trying to find the right space and drag people out.”last_img read more

ONeill focuses on the positives

first_imgDespite being relegated in the UEFA Nations League, Michael O’Neill is optimistic his Northen Ireland side is improving.Northern Ireland have failed to win a single point from their opening three matches in Group B3 and will be relegated to Group C when the Nations League returns, and Michael O’Neill knows that.Bosnia and Herzegovina are expected to win the group, with Austria in second place, but O’Neill feels they are improving as they try to focus on next year’s Euro 2020 qualifiers.“We played the other night with a starting line-up of five core players and six who are in single figures in terms of caps – Gavin Whyte, Liam Boyce, George Saville, Jamal Lewis, Michael Smith and the goalkeeper [Bailey Peacock-Farrell],” O’Neill told Sky Sports.The Netherlands have a walk in the park in Estonia’s pitch Tomás Pavel Ibarra Meda – September 9, 2019 With a stellar performance from Ryan Babel, the Netherlands won their second consecutive UEFA Euro Qualifier against Estonia.After the impressive performance they offered in…“We’re progressing, those boys are stepping up in international football and playing against a lot more experienced players.“I’ve been delighted with how the players have come in. We’ve got good competition for places in a lot of areas on the pitch, at times we haven’t had that.“So despite the fact the three games have gone against us, we were disappointed to lose the games but I’m not devastated or despondent.”last_img read more

Dyche analyzes Burnleys problems

first_imgThe team has not won in the English Premier League since two months ago but expects to turn their luck around soonBurnley hasn’t won a single game in the English Premier League since beating Cardiff City two months ago.And for manager Sean Dyche, the team can turn their luck around soon.“Last weekend wasn’t good enough. We know that,” Dyche was echoed by Sky Sports.Burnley FC v Manchester City - Premier LeagueMatch Preview: Burnley vs Liverpool Boro Tanchev – August 30, 2019 Premier League leaders Liverpool travel to Burnley for the Matchday 4 of the 2019-20 Premier League campaign.“But then a short number of days before against Newcastle [Burnley lost 2-1], I thought it was a good performance and I thought we deserved more than we got.”“So, there is a balance to the workload and how we are performing,” he added.“I know the players we are working with, and I know the honesty and the endeavor and I know some of the quality. That sometimes gets pushed aside when results aren’t going your way.”“The players are still working and have been good around the place. We’ve had disappointments before and pushed them aside quickly, and we’ve got to do that again,” he commented.last_img read more

Qantas Air New Zealand join forces for codeshare deal

first_img Travelweek Group Qantas, Air New Zealand join forces for codeshare deal Friday, June 1, 2018 Share SYDNEY — Long-time competitors Air New Zealand and Qantas have announced plans for a reciprocal codeshare agreement.Under the codeshare Qantas will add its code on up to 30 routes on Air New Zealand’s domestic network, while Air New Zealand will add its code on up to 85 routes on Qantas’ domestic network.Both carriers say the new deal will make travel within Australia and New Zealand easier. Coordination of check-in and handling at airports will mean shorter connection times, opening up more onward flights for passengers on each carrier’s domestic networks and faster journey times overall, say the airlines.While the two airlines “will continue to compete very strongly across all markets,” the codeshare will see two of the world’s best airlines offer their customers a full service experience when they make domestic connections within New Zealand or Australia, says Air New Zealand CEO Christopher Luxon. Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce added that the two national carriers had a lot of shared history as well as a shared goal of making travel easier.“Our relationship with Air New Zealand goes back almost 80 years. We’ve been partners at various stages over that time and we have a lot of respect for them as a competitor. A codeshare deal on our domestic networks makes sense for customers because it leverages the strengths we each have in our home markets.”The codeshare and customer offering will exclude Trans-Tasman flights. Qantas will continue to codeshare on all connecting Jetstar New Zealand services.Tickets for the codeshare services will be available by the end of July, for travel from Oct. 28 onwards.Virgin Australia has already let it be known that it’s not impressed with the new codeshare deal. According to reports in The Sydney Morning Herald, a spokesperson for Virgin Australia said the codeshare will have knock-on effects for competition on the Tasman, adding “we are surprised that a partnership between the two major airline groups in New Zealand is allowed.”last_img read more

First American Title Releases New TRID Tool Kit for Title Agents

first_img AgentNet First American Financial Corporation First American Title Insurance Company TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosure 2015-05-26 Staff Writer First American Title Releases New TRID Tool Kit for Title Agents in Headlines, News, Servicing, Technology, Uncategorized First American Title Insurance Company, a provider of title insurance and settlement services and the largest subsidiary of First American Financial Corporation has launched its TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosure (TRID) Tool Kit for First American-affiliated title agents. The company also offers its title agents a comprehensive suite of TRID training and reference materials.The TRID Tool Kit will be available on First American’s agent portal, AgentNet, according to company. The Tool Kit is designed to help agents prepare for TRID implementation that will go in effect on August Agents are expected to follow a three-step program—assess, act, and grow—when using the program. These steps are presented through a series of recommended activities designed to help agents reach goals that are necessary for the TRID changes.“Title agents need to dramatically adjust the way they work with lenders and their business sources under TRID, all while continuing to service their customers,” said Evan Zanic, president of First American Title, Agency Division. “We’re focused on assisting our agents through the TRID preparation process. We think the tool kit can help them more efficiently prepare for TRID, giving them more time to spend with their customers.”According to the company, the TRID Tool Kit offers suggestions on topics that title agents should discuss with their lenders, and includes specific questions to ask and guidelines on when to ask them. The Tool Kit will be updated regularly to provide a helpful and evolving resource for title agents as the TRID deadline approaches.“Title agents that embrace the transition to TRID can build stronger relationships with their business sources and potentially enhance their position in the market,” said Lou Pontani, vice president of sales and marketing at First American Title, Agency Division. “Our TRID Tool Kit is one way we’re trying to help First American agents position themselves for growth.”last_img read more