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NBA Announces Basketball Development Curriculum in Chinese Schools


National Basketball Association(NEW YORK) -- For years the NBA has been focused on expanding the game's popularity and reach internationally. They have taken another big step in doing so as the league has announced they've agreed on a partnership with the educational system in China to implement an official basketball-related curriculum in the nation’s schools.

Because of players like Yao Ming among others, the NBA has grown to become extremely popular in China.

From the official release, the league states:

“The groundbreaking partnership will focus on basketball participation in elementary, middle and high schools across China and aims to provide enhanced basketball training to at least 3 million students by 2017.”

“As part of the curriculum, NBA players, legends and coaches will visit Chinese schools to conduct basketball clinics and provide specialized instruction to Chinese coaches and physical education teachers.  Chinese coaches and physical education teachers selected by the Ministry of Education will also have the chance to observe and participate in coaching activities organized by the NBA.”

Back in February 2014, NBA China and Ming launched the first ever after-school basketball program in Beijing.

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Cowboys' Joseph Randle Lands Underwear Endorsement After Shoplifting


Scott Boehm/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Less than a week after being charged for a misdemeanor after he shoplifted a pair of underwear and cologne at a Dillard's in Frisco, Texas, Dallas Cowboys running back Joseph Randle has landed an endorsement with MeUndies.

According to MeUndies head of marketing and business development, Dan King, the company has turned to Randle to become a spokesman for the brand.

Randle was fined $29,500 for shoplifting, and MeUndies will pay the fine.

Joseph teamed up with MeUndies to give back to his community and help families in need.

"As a young company, MeUndies is faced with difficult challenges all the time. It's up to us to turn a negative situation into a positive one, almost on a daily basis," King said. "How you learn from your mistakes fast is how you find success in our business and those lessons are applicable in all walks of life."

The 22-year-old Randle is in his second NFL season and has 120 rushing yards this season on 18 carries.

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Catcher A.J. Pierzynski Plans to Play in 2015


Ron Vesely/MLB Photos via Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- After just completing his 17th Major League season, which is no easy feat for a catcher, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports A.J. Pierzynski plans to play again in 2015.

Pierzynski spent last season with the Boston Red Sox before he was traded to the St. Louis Cardinals.

Pierzkynski will be an unrestricted free agent, so it remains to be seen just where he'll continue his playing career and in what capacity.

“I want to play, obviously,” Pierzynski told the paper. “Physically I feel good. I still think I can contribute. I don’t know what will be out there, but I want to play.”

In 2014, Pierzynski batted .251, the lowest mark of his career, while hitting five home runs and 37 RBIs in 102 games played. Despite the down season, Pierzynski is a career .281 hitter and batted .272 and hit 17 home runs with the Texas Rangers in 2013.

Pierzynski will turn 38 in December.

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SEC West Dominates New AP Poll


Streeter Lecka/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- In the latest Associated Press college football poll, the Southeastern Conference (SEC) reached a new level of dominance. Four of the top five teams in the country all reside in the SEC, the first time a single conference can boast such a feat.

Mississippi State (6-0) remained the number one team in the land while Ole Miss (7-0) remains third. Alabama (6-1) jumped up to fourth in the poll, thanks to a 59-0 rout over then 21st-ranked Texas A&M, with Auburn (5-1) rounding out the top-five.

The lone team not from the SEC in the top-five is Florida State (7-0) of the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC). The Seminoles held off Notre Dame on Saturday, which dropped to seventh with the loss.

The Oregon Ducks (6-1) sit at sixth in the nation while the Irish (6-1) dropped two spots to seventh. Michigan State (6-1), Georgia (6-1), and TCU (6-1) finish out the top-10 teams.

Oklahoma State, Texas A&M, and Stanford all fell from the AP Top-25 Poll after week seven.

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Bills Score in Final Seconds, Defeat Vikings


Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images(ORCHARD PARK, N.Y.) -- Sammy Watkins caught a game-winning touchdown pass from Kyle Orton with one second left on the clock as the Buffalo Bills (4-3) snuck past the Minnesota Vikings (2-5), 17-16 on Sunday. 

Orton, a 10-year veteran, led an 80-yard drive in the final quarter to cap off an improbable victory for the Bills who turned the ball over four times. Buffalo also lost a pair of running backs in C.J. Spiller and Fred Jackson to injury.

That did not deter the quarterback who overcame a lost fumble and interception of his own. The rookie Watkins finished the day with nine catches for 122 yards and a pair of touchdowns. Orton kept the drive alive by converting a fourth-and-20 with a 24-yard pass to Scott Chandler. Two plays later, he found Watkins to convert on third-and-12.

"Any time you get a chance to go on a game-winning drive, it's awesome," Orton said. "We hung in there, made some mistakes, but in the end we got the win, and that was our goal."

The Vikings led 13-10 at halftime on a pair of Blair Walsh field goals sandwiched around a Cordarelle Patterson touchdown catch. The lead ballooned to six on Walsh's third field goal of the game in the fourth quarter after Minnesota had a first-and-goal on the seven.

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Jaguars Stun Browns, Get First Win of Season


David Dermer/Diamond Images/Getty Images(JACKSONVILLE, Fla.) -- Denard Robinson rushed for a career-high 127 yards and a touchdown while the Jacksovnille defense held Cleveland to just 69 yards on the ground en route to a 24-6 Jaguars win on Sunday. It was the first win of the year for Jacksonville (1-6), snapping a nine-game losing streak.

The Browns (3-3) took a 6-0 lead with a pair of field goals from Billy Cundiff despite being inside the 20-yard line on both drives. They found themselves on the wrong side of the scoreboard just before halftime when Blake Bortles and Allen Robinson connected for a 31-yard touchdown pass.

Jacksonville added to their lead in the third quarter with a Josh Scobee field goal, the only points by either team in that period. The Jaguars let their defense do the rest, keeping the league's third-best rushing attack in check while forcing three turnovers. The victory was the first for the franchise since Dec. 15, 2013 when they beat the Houston Texans.

Only adding to the Browns' frustration was the inability to score on three interceptions of Bortles. Quarterback Brian Hoyer was just 16-for-41 passing with 215 yards while Ben Tate rushed for a team-high 36 yards.

Robinson, a star quarterback at Michigan in college, carried the ball 22 times and scored on an eight-yard scamper in the fourth quarter that put Jacksonville ahead 17-6.

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Manning Surpasses Favre in Broncos Victory


Justin Edmonds/Getty Images(DENVER) -- Once again, Peyton Manning finds himself in the record books. The Denver Broncos quarterback threw four touchdowns in Sunday night's 42-17 win over San Francisco, giving him 510 career touchdown passes and surpassing Brett Favre's NFL record of 508.

"It is quite an honor," Manning said. "I do have great appreciation for quarterbacks who played this game throughout the years. It's very humbling, has taken a lot of hard work, a lot of people helped me get to this point."

The record-breaking pass came late in the second quarter on an eight-yard strike to Demaryius Thomas that put the Broncos (5-1) up 21-3 over the 49ers (4-3). Upon setting the mark, Manning's teammates had a little fun with the 38-year old, playing keep-away with the momento before eventually congratulating their quarterback.

"I can't believe they actually did it," chided Manning. "They sort of joked about it during the week. I'm a little bit hurt by it. The fact that they thought they could do it."

It took just 246 career games for Manning to break the record set by Favre in 302 career games. The 16-year veteran has thrown 110 touchdown passes in his two-plus years with the Broncos, whom he signed with in 2012 following neck surgery that threatened his career.

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Scoreboard Roundup - 10/19/14


Hemera/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- NFL: Jacksonville Jaguars 24 (1-6) - Cleveland Browns 6 (3-3)

Baltimore Ravens 29 (5-2) - Atlanta Falcons 7 (2-5)

Washington Redskins 19 (2-5) - Tennessee Titans 17 (2-5)

St. Louis Rams 28 (2-4) - Seattle Seahawks 26 (3-3)

Buffalo Bills 17 (4-3) - Minnesota Vikings 16 (2-5)

Indianapolis Colts 27 (5-2) - Cincinnati Bengals 0 (3-2-1)

Detroit Lions 24 (5-2) - New Orleans Saints 23 (2-4)

Miami Dolphins 27 (3-3) - Chicago Bears 14 (3-4)

Green Bay Packers 38 (5-2) - Carolina Panthers 17 (3-3)

Dallas Cowboys 31 (6-1) - New York Giants 21 (3-4)

Arizona Cardinals 24 (5-1) - Oakland Raiders 13 (0-6)

Kansas City Chiefs 23 (3-3) - San Diego Chargers 20 (5-2)

Denver Broncos 42 (5-1) - San Francisco 49ers 17 (4-3) 

NHL: New York Rangers 4 (3-3-0, 6pts) - San Jose Sharks 0 (4-1-1, 9pts)

Los Angeles Kings 2 (4-1-1, 9pts) - Minnesota Wild 1 (2-2-0, 4pts)

Calgary Flames 4 (4-3-0, 8pts) - Winnipeg Jets 1 (1-4-0, 2pts)

Anaheim Ducks 3 (5-1-0, 10pts) - St. Louis Blues 0 (2-2-1, 5pts)

NASCAR: Brad Keselowski moves onto the Eliminator Round after a win at Talladega Superspeedway.

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Brad Keselowski Survives Round, Wins at Talladega


Streeter Lecka/Getty Images For NASCAR(TALLADEGA, Ala.) -- Brad Keselowski is into the eliminator round after holding off Matt Kenseth at Talladega Superspeedway on Sunday.

Keselowski needed to win in order to stay alive in the chase for the championship and took the lead during the final caution flag in the green-white checkered finish.

The win comes after last weekend's post-race brawl between Kenseth and Keselowski, but Keselowski will take a win no matter what.

"I know there's probably some people out there that aren't really happy I won. I can understand that. But I'm a man like anyone else and not real proud of last week," Keselowski said of last weekend's post-race brawl at Charlotte.  "But I'm real proud of today."

"It was funny how this racing world works out. I don't know why it is that way. I don't know why it seems like every week where there's either a fight in the garage or a mishap or something like that happens, those two cars and people end up together."

Dale Earnhardt Jr., Kasey Kahne, and defending Sprint Cup champion Jimmie Johnson were all eliminated from the Chase for the Championship.

Jeff Gordon, a Hendrick teammate of the three who were eliminated, said it's tough to see them go out that way.

"Great teams, great drivers, great friends. I hate to see them not in there," Gordon said about Johnson, Earnhardt and Kahne. "I really thought the chances of two of them getting in were very good, and certainly one of them. I thought two of us would be in there, and I thought there's a decent chance three could be there."

Gordon, Joey Logano, Kevin Harvick, Carl Edwards, Ryan Newman, Denny Hamlin, and Kenseth are all moving onto the next round.

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Rams Surprise Seahawks


Scott Boehm/Getty Images(ST. LOUIS) -- The St. Louis Rams pulled out all the stops to beat their division rival Seattle Seahawks with crafty special teams play in a 28-26 win on Sunday.

Stedman Bailey fooled everyone on a 90-yard fake punt return and Benny Cunningham's 75-yard kickoff return on a squibbed kick that rolled into the end zone in the second quarter put the Rams up 21-3.

The Rams would not be done though, Cunningham's 18-yard reception from kicker Johnny Hekker late in the fourth quarter extended a drive and a late fumble recovery closed the game out.

"It was great execution by them on a couple different scenarios," Seahawks coach Pete Carroll. "It made a huge difference in this game."

The Seahawks have now lost back-to-back games and sit at 3-3.

"Grateful for the effort, an entire team effort," Rams head coach Jeff Fisher said.  "That's a really good football team and that's an understatement."

Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson threw for 313 yards and two touchdowns in the loss.

"We have a team that's full of fighters," Wilson said.  "There's nothing better than having your backs against the wall.  That's where we're at right now.  You just play 1-0 and try and focus on what you can control."

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