Sports

Brian Blanco / AP

Carolina coach Matt Rhule knows if the Panthers are to win their first game Sunday, they will have pressure “iconic quarterback” Tom Brady and not allow him to sit in the pocket and pick their defense apart.

The Panthers didn’t register a sack in their season opener against the Las Vegas Raiders and barely got any pressure on Derek Carr.

UNC football Mack Brown
Ben McKeown / AP

North Carolina coach Mack Brown hasn’t tried to dismiss the high expectations that are following his 18th-ranked Tar Heels entering Saturday’s season-opening visit from Syracuse.

Craig James / Flickr www.flickr.com/photos/thewidewideworld/45760403542/

The United States Golf Association announced Wednesday it will move its equipment testing center and other offices to North Carolina as part of a $36 million investment within the iconic golfing village of Pinehurst.

NASCAR covid masks martinsville
Steve Helber / AP Photo

NASCAR has decided it will not grant COVID-19 relief during the playoffs, meaning a positive coronavirus test will end a driver's championship bid.

Panthers Owner Frustrated Over Not Having Fans At NFL Opener

Sep 3, 2020

Panthers owner David Tepper expressed frustration with government officials over not allowing fans in the stadium for the team’s Sept. 13 home opener against the Las Vegas Raiders.

ECU East Carolina Football Helmet
R24KBerg Photos via Flickr / https://bit.ly/34FKnqu

East Carolina University’s football team will not open up its season against Marshall.

ECU Athletic Director Jon Gilbert announced Thursday afternoon that the game had been postponed “due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.”

Dave Doeren is the N.C. State University head football coach.
NC State

North Carolina State’s season-opening football game at Virginia Tech was postponed Wednesday from Sept. 12 to Sept. 26 because of a cluster of COVID-19 cases among Wolfpack athletes in Raleigh.

Duke football Wallace Wade
Mitchell Northam / WUNC

Duke University will play sports this fall, but there won’t be any fans in the stands when balls are kicked and tackles are made.

The school announced Monday that, due to the impact of COVID-19, it will begin its fall sports seasons without spectators at home games. Parking lots will also be closed to fans on game days.

Rod Brind'Amour Carolina Hurricanes NHL
Gerry Broome / AP

Jake DeBrusk scored twice in Boston’s dominating third period to help the Bruins rally and beat the Carolina Hurricanes 4-3 on Monday to take a 3-1 lead in their first-round playoff series.

Chris Seward / AP

This is what Dougie Hamilton was hoping for while he waited out the pandemic shutdown that put the NHL season on hold, and then waited some more after injuring himself in practice when the Hurricanes returned to the ice.

The Carolina defenseman scored the game-winner with 11:30 left in the third period on Thursday night to lead the Hurricanes to a 3-2 victory over the Boston Bruins — the team that drafted him, and then gave up on him — and tie their playoff series at one game apiece.

Football field at UNC-Chapel Hill
Flickr / William Yeung

The Atlantic Coast Conference Board of Directors voted to push back the start of their fall college sports to Sept. 10 and implement new rules to keep student athletes and coaching staff safe. But is that enough to prevent outbreaks? And if sports are canceled, what does that mean for the future of athletics departments — and for the student athletes?

Lightner and his mom.
Courtesy of Kai Lightner

The climbing started with baby gates and wooden balconies. As a kid, professional rock climber Kai Lightner had a lot of energy and a love for scrambling up anything he could find. 

The run-don't-walk Major League Baseball season begins Thursday night.

Normally it's a 162-game stroll. But the Washington Nationals vs New York Yankees opener, in D.C., represents the beginning of a 60-game sprint through a pandemic shortened schedule.

Crystal Dunn NC Courage
Mitchell Northam / WUNC

Samantha Mewis and Crystal Dunn each scored and the North Carolina Courage won their fourth straight game, beating Sky Blue 2-0 on Monday night in the National Women's Soccer League's Challenge Cup in Herriman, Utah.

A picture of Cam Newton passing.
Matt Rourke/AP Photo / Panthers.com

The New England Patriots have reached an agreement with former Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton, a person with knowledge of the deal told The Associated Press.

The Pats are bringing the 2015 NFL Most Valuable Player aboard to help the team move on from three-time MVP Tom Brady, who joined the Tampa Bay Buccaneers earlier this off-season.

John Bazemore / AP

The owner of a North Carolina racetrack advertised “Bubba Rope” for sale in a social media marketplace just days after a noose had been found in the garage stall of Bubba Wallace, the only Black driver in NASCAR’s top division, at Talladega Superspeedway in Alabama.

Chuck Burton / AP

The Atlantic Coast Conference announced Thursday that Commissioner John Swofford — who oversaw the expansion of the conference and the launch of its own television network — will retire after the 2020-21 academic year, ending his tenure after 24 years.

Mitchell Northam / WUNC

Ally Watt is a newcomer to the North Carolina Courage, having been selected sixth overall in the National Women’s Soccer League’s college draft back in January. Her new teammates have years of experience flourishing at the professional level, as many have played in — and won — Olympics, World Cups and NWSL titles. 

But Watt has played on one rare stage that most other Courage players haven’t.

Photo of Mia Ives-Rublee with her dog Vezzini
Chris Riggs / Courtesy Mia Ives-Rublee

Mia Ives-Rublee grew up surrounded by adults who were worried about her well-being. She has Osteogenesis imperfecta, a genetic bone disorder more commonly known as brittle bone disease, and uses a wheelchair to get around. 

Nortwestern football players celebrate together on the field
Matt Marton / AP

College sports is big business, and while schools and media organizations have long raked in the profits, students themselves have remained without pay. With a new California law, the landscape of college athletics is changing.

People rollerskating on a flat track in wearing team unirforms.
Robert Davezac

The fast-skating, hard-hitting sport of roller derby was incredibly popular in the United States from the 1940s to the 1970s. The sport fell out of favor and into dormancy for several years — until a few punk-rock women in the early 2000s decided to pick it back up again.

Kim Rice wrestling her opponent
courtesy of Kim Rice

A kickboxing class is what led Kim Sarah Rice to practicing Brazilian jiujitsu. She thought kickboxing was fun and she felt strong and powerful while attacking those heavy weighted bags.

Photo of the 2018 Winter Olympics logo
Wikimedia Commons

The Winter Olympics kick off this week in Pyeongchang, South Korea, but the headlines leading up to the international games are dominated by a doping scandal. The International Olympic Committee banned Russia’s team as punishment for systematic state-sponsored doping.

Marcia and John Shoop
Courtesy of Marcia Mount Shoop

After coaching football at nearly every level from high school to the NFL, John Shoop and his wife Reverend Marcia Mount Shoop have racked up a lifetime of observations and convictions about the ethics of sports.

Steve Malik, owner of North Carolina FC, unveils the team's rebranded logo.
Jason deBruyn / WUNC

Big changes hit the Triangle’s soccer world Tuesday as the owner of the local professional team proposed plans to push for a Major League Soccer bid, form a women’s professional team and seek a new stadium with a capacity of more than 20,000 seats.

MLB's before and after images for the Fort Bragg Game
Major League Baseball / Fort Bragg

Major League Baseball broke ground Wednesday on a ballpark at Fort Bragg. The ballpark will host a televised, official game between the Atlanta Braves and the Florida Marlins on July 3.

Eric Hill heads the Community Recreation Division on Fort Bragg. He says the MLB suggested the game as a way to thank military service members, and says the game is stirring up excitement on base.

Image of football players
Creative Commons/ stnorbert

The NCAA reports college athletes suffer more than 10,000 concussions a year, but perhaps more alarming is the fact that about three-quarters of these cases are not reported to coaches or team doctors.

Two public health experts at UNC-Greensboro have received grants from the Department of Defense and NCAA to help encourage these players report their injuries and change the culture of concussions. 

Profile photo of Mark Dreibelbis from the NCHSAA.
www.nchsaa.org/ / www.nchsaa.org/

For Mark Dreibelbis, not much is more exciting than the world of high school sports. From the fans to the rules, he loves every minute. As an associate commissioner with the North Carolina High School Athletic Association, Dreibelbis serves on national committees that have adopted a host of new rules in recent years aimed at keeping student athletes safe.

A picture of Duke fans in the stands.
JR / Flickr

A new Duke University study reveals that most die-hard fans did not attend the universities they support. 

Charles Clotfelter researched which college sports teams were mentioned in obituaries. He is a professor of public policy at Duke University. 

Clotfelter says only about a third of what he calls "true believers" were alumni of their teams' universities.

Did the New England Patriots tamper with the footballs used in the AFC Championship Game? The NFL is asking that question, after the host Patriots beat the Indianapolis Colts, 45-7, in rainy conditions Sunday.

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