With the first contests unfolding next year in South Carolina, Iowa and New Hampshire, small-town voters will play a critical role in choosing the next Democratic nominee.,Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders lamented rural decline during an Iowa swing this weekend.,Several candidates plan to attend a March 30 rural issues forum at Buena Vista University in Storm Lake, Iowa — population 10,600.,AP VoteCast, a national survey of more than 115,000 voters, found rural and small-town residents cast 35 percent of midterm ballots; 56 percent of those voted for Republican House candidates, compared to 41 percent for Democrats.,Sanders noted that many Vermonters, as in the rest of rural America, view guns differently than most big-city residents, but Clinton successfully used the issue against Sanders, particularly with black women.

D&D pioneered and popularized an array of RPG conventions that are now video game and tabletop staples, like experience points (XP), levels, loot, character classes and boss fights.,While still a high school science teacher, University of Connecticut assistant professor Stephen Slota designed a unit-length game to teach human reproduction and sexually transmitted diseases.,“The students worked in teams of three to control a character avatar in a fictitious village, and their goal was to engage in an epidemiological study of the area by investigating locales and speaking to non-player characters as enacted by the instructor,” said Slota, who edited Exploding the Castle: Rethinking How Video Games & Game Mechanics Can Shape The Future Of Education, a collection of game-based learning essays.,Rezzly’s 3D GameLab, the University of Michigan’s GradeCraft, NEXED’s Answerables and Classcraft are gameful learning management systems that have tapped into the class-as-game zeitgeist to help educators keep track of quests, levels, experience points, badges and other game features.,Canadian teacher Justin Matheson says that his Grade 6 students loved the sword-and-sorcery motif, and he credits Classcraft’s video game qualities for fostering perseverance.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — The Latest on NBA All-Star Weekend (all times local): 10:55 p.m. Kyle Kuzma of the Los Angeles Lakers scored 35 points, Jayson Tatum of the Boston Celtics added 30 and the U.S. beat the World team 161-144 in the Rising Stars game for first- and second-year players at All-Star Weekend.,___ 9:05 p.m. Famous Los scored 22 points to win MVP honors, and the Home team held on to beat the Away team 82-80 in the All-Star Celebrity Game on Friday night.,At a Hall of Fame event Friday at All-Star weekend in Charlotte, North Carolina, Abdul-Jabbar said Kaepernick "had a statement that he had to make through his demonstrations, but he's a quarterback and I think he should be working.",The mother of Stephen and Seth Curry sank a one-handed, half-court shot — that she took underhanded — to help her three-person team beat teams led by her NBA sons and one by her daughter to win a family shootout at a newly refurbished at a community center in Charlotte, North Carolina.,Jones was a four-time NBA All-Star, a huge part of Philadelphia's 1983 NBA-title-winning team and the league's sixth man award winner that season.

The Chicago Cubs are teaming with Sinclair Broadcast Group to launch a regional sports network in February 2020 that will become the exclusive television home of the Cubs.,It marks the end of more than 70 years of over-the-air broadcasts for the Cubs, and the beginning of an ambitious endeavor to sell cable and satellite providers on the value of the carrying the new regional network — no sure thing in an increasingly fragmented world of cable TV.,But if all goes according to plan and cable providers from Southwest Michigan to Iowa — Major League Baseball’s designated home broadcast turf for the team — agree to carry the new network, viewers will have no choice but to watch local Cubs games on pay TV.,Having their own channel will enable the Cubs to have all of their programming in one place, versus splitting the games between two broadcast stations — WGN-Ch.9 and WLS-Ch.7 — and sharing coverage with the Bulls, Blackhawks and White Sox on NBC Sports Chicago, formerly Comcast SportsNet, the regional sports network formed in 2004.,But in the five years since the Cubs planted the seed of the regional sports network, the pay-TV landscape has changed dramatically, with cord cutting and skinny bundles squeezing the carriage fees cable companies are willing to pay for even sports, long the most valuable programming commodity.

Without McCoy, who transferred to Texas after he was enrolled in classes for less than three weeks, USC does not have a five-star in the fold for its recruiting class for the first time since 2000, when recruiting services began ranking the top high school players.,Over more recent years, the Trojans have faced more difficulty reeling in five-star talent, largely the prospects from outside California, at times leaving them over-reliant on top players from their own backyard.,The Trojans finished 5-7 last year, their first losing season since 2000, prompting calls from fans for Helton to be fired following his third full season before the embattled coach was retained by Athletic Director Lynn Swann.,But even in the initial seasons under Helton, while the Trojans made consecutive New Year’s Six bowl games, they were unable to pluck five-star recruits from other regions of the country and poach prospects from other blue-blood schools that have had a better recent track record of producing NFL draft picks, especially among offensive linemen.,Gorney and other analysts reasoned that the Trojans have had enough talent in recent seasons to contend for Pac-12 championships, and they won the conference crown in their second season under Helton in 2017.

The traditional signing day Wednesday merely padded Oregon's already stellar recruiting class, the best in school history.,GETTING DEFENSIVE: Washington capped its recruiting class by landing two of the top defensive players on the West Coast.,Washington had seemed to be the favorite for Heimuli for most of the recruiting period, but his Menlo-Atherton team advancing to the state title game in California impacted his ability to make a decision in time for the December signing period.,The abrupt departure of new offensive coordinator Kliff Kingsbury after 34 days shook up the Trojans' recruiting class and led to the departure of receiver commit Bru McCoy, who spurned USC for Texas.,The day had an international flavor with the Utes bringing in 6-foot-7 offensive lineman Bamidele Olaseni, a native of London who played last year for Garden City Community College in Kansas, and fellow 6-foot-7 offensive lineman Luke Felix-Fualalo, a former rugby player in Australia who played last year for prep powerhouse Mater Dei in California.

Foskey, a four-star defensive end from De La Salle High School in Concord, Calif., became the final member of Notre Dame’s 2019 recruiting class, joining 21 players who signed during the early period in December.,The Illini added a pair of linebackers to the 11 players they signed in December, getting the day started by announcing the signing of four-star prospect Shammond Cooper from St. Louis’ Trinity Catholic High School.,Three-star linebacker Tarique Barnes of Memphis, Tenn., brought the class to 13 players.,In terms of average player rating, Illinois’ class ranks seventh in the conference, and its three four-star signees — including cornerback Marquez Beason and quarterback Isaiah Williams — trail only five Big Ten teams.,Illinois was considered a likely landing spot for Cooper thanks to his strong ties with Cory Patterson, his former high school coach who is now an Illini assistant coach, and Williams, his high school teammate who signed with the Illini in December.

At the top spot, OU’s Spencer Papa and Jake Van Emburgh were defeated by No. 11 Richard Ciamarra and Tristan McCormick 6-4.,Sooners Alex Bakshi and Stefano Tsorotiotis were defeated by No. 49 Grayson Broadus and Matt Gamle 6-3 at No 3.,Van Emburgh took the first frame 6-4 before Ciammarrra won the second 6-4 to send the court to a deciding set.,Jake Van Emburgh (OU) vs. #63 Richard Ciamarra (ND) 6-4, 4-6, 3-5, unfinished

3.,Ferran Calvo/Mason Beiler (OU) vs. Alex Lebedev/Axel Nefve (ND) 5-4, unfinished read more

NORMAN – Spencer Papa of the Oklahoma men’s tennis team has been named Big 12 Player of the Week, the conference announced Tuesday.,Papa paced the Sooners from the No. 1 spot in both singles and doubles during ITA Kickoff weekend.,In the Sooners’ contest with Drake, unranked Papa and partner Jake Van Emburgh made quick work of No. 27 Vinny Gillespie and Barny Thorold, giving up just one game to win 6-1.,This is the third conference weekly honor for Papa, who was last named player of the week on Feb. 28, 2017.,Papa and the Sooners head to Michigan Saturday for their first road contest of the season.

The Punisher’s second season begins with Frank Castle (Jon Bernthal) grabbing a beer at a dive bar in some nondescript Michigan town.,In the first three episodes of its second season, The Punisher delivers some of the best television the soon-to-be-discontinued Marvel-Netflix enterprise has made in years.,Granted, the Punisher was always going to be a tricky character to adapt to the screen: The show’s first season was delayed in 2017 after the mass shooting in Las Vegas that killed 59 people.,Even so, The Punisher deserves credit for its initial conceit: The violence was there, but it was expressed through the lens of Frank, Billy, and other characters’ service in the military and the displacement they all felt returning home without any resources to start their postwar lives.,So while The Punisher offered some good through two seasons—namely, impressive fight scenes, an empathetic approach to veterans, and a nuanced lead performance by Bernthal—its presumed cancellation on Netflix isn’t just strategic cost-cutting by a company that knows it can’t compete with Disney’s impending Marvel roster.