Ray Jr. on Sports

  1. Steelers hope to sign DE Tuitt to extension-As All-Pro RB Le’Veon Bell continues to hold out, the Pittsburgh Steelers aim to sign DE Stephen Tuitt to a contract extension before the season starts, Per team President Art Rooney II. When the Steelers are this intent on signing someone, 98% of the time, they get it done. I’ll give it until the final week in August.
  2. K Chris Boswell too-They found this man in a kicking tryout in 2015 and all he’s done was kick game-winners and set the NFL playoff postseason record with 6 field goals, so it’s a no-brainer that the Steelers want to lock Boswell up as well. He deserves it.
  3. Kevin Colbert Extension-Meanwhile, Rooney says that there’s no timetable on when they will sign GM Kevin Colbert to a contract extension. It was expected that it would come after they signed Head Coach Mike Tomlin to his extension, but nothing yet. I believe that this deal will happen before the season starts too.
  4. LeVeon Bell’s Status-And then there’s this guy who continues to hold out because he didn’t get a long-term deal. I have great respect for this kid, but I don’t respect his actions, which are selfish right now. Bell knows he has to play for the $12 million Franchise Tag, so why not come to camp and get ready for 2017? My guess is that he will wait until the Steelers leave Latrobe and start practices on the South Side to show up, kind of like how WR Mike Wallace did it.
  5. Sammie Coates returns to practice-Glad to hear that this young man is back. Fresh off a season in which he had some highs (435 yards, 2 TDS) and lows (5 drops and injuries) Coates is certainly hoping 2017 will be a year of redemption. He did his best to fill in for the suspended Martavis Bryant but as we found out, he’s no He just needs to focus on being Sammie.
  6. Other Steelers Receivers-It’s a crowded crew, that’s for sure. I believe that they’ll keep 6: Antonio Brown, Bryant, Coates, JuJu Smith-Shuster, Eli Rogers, but who will be the 6th? Cobi Hamilton, Justin Hunter, Darius Heyward-Bey, Marcus Tucker?? It will truly be a tough decision for Tomlin and OC Todd Haley. I would truly pick Hamilton because he’s starting to impress me more, but the Steelers love Heyward-Bey. We shall see.
  7. Speaking of Bryant-As we know, he was officially reinstated to practice, which he began on Sunday and he’s impressing many of his teammates, including QB Ben Roethlisberger. As we know, there aren’t any concerns about Bryant’s on-field issues, so he’ll be fine. He’s not expected to play Sunday vs. Atlanta.
  8. Steelers Defense-Even though it’s preseason, the Steelers defense made quite the impression in their 20-12 win vs. the NY Giants. They had 5 sacks (3 from LB Arthur Moats) and 2 from rookie TJ Watt. They displayed an aggressiveness that I hadn’t seen in years. Hopefully, this will carry over into the regular season.
  9. Possible NFL Work Stoppage in 2021? According to NFL Player Rep DeMaurice Smith, it is very You would think that after their 132-day lockout in 2011 that the players and owners unions would stay far away from another stoppage, but like Smith said, there hasn’t been much labor peace. Well, they still have 4 years to go, so hopefully, they can prevent another one.
  10. NFL Players not standing during National Anthem-In support of what’s been going on in the country and also for un-signed QB Colin Kaepernick, several NFL players chose to protest the national anthem by either kneeling or sitting. Oakland Raiders RB Marshawn is the only player who sat, and he refused to explain, to no surprize.
  11. Are the players justified? Whether you agree or not, yes they are, just as much as any American has a right to express their views. They are making a statement and they want to be heard.
  12. Pirates-Well, they’ve teased us for the past few weeks, but I honestly feel like this team isn’t good enough to win the NL Central Division, because the Chicago Cubs and St. Louis Cardinals are good enough and more talented and resilient than the Pirates. I would also include the Milwaukee Brewers too, but they don’t look like the team who led the division in the first half of the season.
  13. What has been the Pirates problem? Besides their ownership (I sound like a broken record), it’s been inconsistent pitching. Starters Gerrit Cole and Ivan Nova haven’t been as good as they’ve been, Jameson Tallion missed starts due to cancer and has fought back, and rookies Chad Kuhl and Trevor Williams lack of experience have hurt this team. Plus, the offense has been up and down and have been wounded due to the loss of 3B Jung-Ho Kang and the 80-game suspension of LF Starling Marte. It is what it is.
  14. Neil Walker is a brewer that’s what’s disappointing about the Pirates Front Office. They don’t take enough The 2013 team would’ve traded for Walker, who was actually on the team that year. But this team and front office are truly delusional and GM Neal Huntington continues to talk about ‘Financial Flexibility’ Give me a break. Anyway, kudos to the Brewers for adding Walker for the fight for the division.
  15. LA Dodgers-This team truly has the best record in baseball with over 80 wins. There’s talk on whether they can best the Cubs and Seattle Mariners 1916 and 2001 season record of 116 wins, but the Dodgers aren’t talking about it. Why would they? They’re trying to lock up the NL West and aim for a World Series title, something they haven’t done since 1988.
  16. Other Division Leaders-In addition to Central (Cubs) and West (Dodgers) leaders, Washington leads the NL East and in the AL it’s Boston (East), Cleveland (Central) and Houston (West) and the Wild Card leaders are NL: Colorado and Arizona and in the AL: The NY Yankees and LA Angels.
  17. Dwyane Wade may seek buyout with Bulls-So much for coming home. Apparently, it didn’t work out so well with Wade who went home to Chicago to play with the Bulls last season, because of this buyout news. But it’s just speculation at this point. But if Wade is bought out, I wouldn’t be surprised if the Cleveland Cavaliers are on his wish-list.
  18. Kyrie Irving-Speaking of the Cavs, apparently there’s still news about Irving wanting out of Cleveland and I guess the Cavs are looking into possible deals, but once again it’s just speculation and yet again, the NBA is acting like a soap opera.
  19. Pitt Football-Apparently the team will have a James Conner bobblehead giveaway during the 2017 season. I think he deserves it after his record-setting college career.
  20. Narduzzi wants Duquesne and Robert Morris-The Pitt HC sure did say that, but not for a regular season game, but a preseason game (which they don’t have in college football) or scrimmage. That would be interesting.



Please e-mail Ray at ray@urbanmediatoday.com

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Tips And Tricks For Landing The Job You Truly Want

If you are currently searching for a job – and we’re assuming you are, given that you’ve read this far! – you likely are feeling a variety of emotions. Excited, nervous, overwhelmed…these are all common emotions when we’re on the job market. The more you know about strategies that work, the better of a position you’ll be in.

If you are confused as to what you should wear on your interview, always err on the side of caution. This means that you should always dress to impress, with professional attire. Not only will you look more presentable, but you will feel more in tune and confident when you meet your interviewer.

Even if the job you’re applying for is a casual one, show the interview and employer respect by dressing impressively and professionally. You will still impress the interview if you dress to impress.

Before you even apply for a job, be sure that your resume is as up-to-date as possible. List any past job that you can think of, as trivial as a job may seem The more experience you have in a specific industry, the more likely you are to land a job.

Always make sure that the job that you are applying for is feasible from a location perspective. Often, you may want to just take the first job that is available to you, but you do not want to drive 100 miles to get to and from your job each day.

Remember that a resume is only a stepping stone to finding employment. You must keep it updated to remain current. Your resume is not the only factor when it comes to hiring. Employers are seeking confident and positive individuals to fill their positions. Take the time to think about your strengths and skills so you can draw attention to these things.

You can get the job you desire if you have a good resume. Use your resume to inform potential employers of who you are and the background you have. Provide concise, relevant information regarding your education, professional history, and assets. Also, be sure that you add contact information and any experience you have with volunteering.

Make sure that the voicemail on your phone sounds professional if you are giving your number to potential employers. Avoid loud background music and distracting noises. You should be clear about who you are and politely ask the caller to leave a message. Make sure that you return every call you receive promptly.

Be very clear about what kind of job you’re looking for before you begin job hunting. Many people get too caught up in looking for “a job” instead of for their dream job, and that causes them to apply for jobs that don’t fit them well. If you restrict your job hunt to jobs you would be excited about taking, you are more likely to find the right job for you.

If you are an older job seeker, understand that you do not have to include the dates of your high school and college graduation or dates of courses you may have taken early in your career. Additionally, you do not have to list high school at all if you graduated from college. It is understood that you also have a high school diploma.

When looking for a job in your niche, try embracing social forums. You need to stay current with the latest news and information in your desired field. It is easy to become a part of these discussions via websites like Twitter and LinkedIn. Social forums are often overlooked, however, engaging in conversations like these can help build connections with other professionals in your niche, including some prospective employers.

Don’t be dishonest during an interview. The interviewer is likely to run a background check and find out that you’re not telling the truth. Claiming to have work experience, skills or knowledge that you really don’t have can get you into trouble. Rather than lying about your job experience, focus instead on your strengths.

One of the things to understand when you are job hunting is that there will be a lot of disappointments. If you understand this, you will be in a good position to get back on your feet and stay persistent if you do not land the job. Eventually, your dedication and drive will pay off.

Never use a generic cover letter when you are applying for a job at a specific company. If a potential employer believes you have given them a generic letter, they will toss it and they will not contact you. Your cover letter should be relevant to the job industry and company if you expect to receive a reply.

If you are having a hard time landing a job, try expanding on your skill set. There are quick and economical courses available on line you could take from the comfort of your own home that can increase your value to any potential employer. Include the accomplishment on your resume and keep trying!

Know the name of the person you are sending your resume to. Don’t simply put “to whom it may concern”. That shows lazy thinking. It is much better to call the company and ask them who is going to be receiving your resume. This little touch can be what gets you that interview.

Keep your resume to one page. For the majority of people, a resume one page long is enough to get your story across. Longer resumes have a tendency of getting trashed before ever getting considered. So unless you’ve got a wealth of experience that just can’t fit on a single page, aim for brevity.

The quest to find meaningful and fulfilling employment can be a daunting one. But by reading this article, you are now in a much better position to achieve your employment goal! Your job in the next little bit will be to find a job – you’re on the road to having the tools you need to accomplish this feat! editor@urbanmediatoday.com

Change Your Life And Become More Fit!

Getting in shape has tons of benefits, such as preventing illness and injury, but it can also help you gain strength, gain confidence, and look better. In fact, most people have no idea how to get started on a program to become fit. The following article will give you some tips on how to start a fitness program.

Set up your weight lifting routine around your fitness goals. If you are trying to create large, bulky muscle you’ll want to do more weight, but with longer rest periods between sets and between workouts. If you are trying to develop lean muscles with high endurance, you want to lift less weight, but do it more often and with shorter rest times.

When looking for another way to improve fitness sometimes one needs to look no further than their pet dog. By taking the dog on walks around the neighborhood or specific trails an individual can increase the amount of exercise they and their pet get. Apart from all the extra exercise and the benefits from that one will strengthen the bond between owner and their pet.

To become more fit, you need only put one foot in front of the other. Walking is an excellent way to improve your aerobic fitness level. You will get your heart pumping, and muscles working. You can start small, walking a little bit more every day. Your body will adapt, and soon you will be able to walk miles and miles.

Do not think of the process of getting fit as a short-term exercise with a cut-off date. Fitness is a long-term commitment. In fact, it should be a permanent one. When building a fitness routine consider not just the immediate benefits but whether or not the routine is one that can be sustained indefinitely. Fitness is for life, not just for bikini season.

To stay fit it’s important to break bad food habits. While a healthy diet contributes greatly to overall fitness, it can be one of the hardest goals to achieve. Most people enter a fitness program accustomed to eating unhealthy foods. This is a habit that can be broken. The quicker the fitness enthusiast acclimates to a healthy diet the faster cravings for junk food will disappear.

A good tip to help you lose weight is to exercise moderately. A lot of people make the mistake of going too hard at first. They’ll do over two hours of cardio in one session and pretty soon they’ll burn themselves out. It’s best to go with a more moderate workout routine.

It’s important to replenish your body’s sodium levels when you exercise, so make sure you aren’t letting them dip too low. Most sports drinks contain plenty of sodium, or you can add an electrolyte supplement to water. Keep an eye out for any symptoms of low sodium, such as headaches, muscle cramps, and disorientation.

A good nutritional tip is to keep eating healthy even when you’re trying to put on muscle. A lot of people think they can eat whatever they want when they try to gain muscle, but that kind of reckless eating will only result in fat gain. Instead, keep eating healthy as you normally would.

Use your workout equipment in an order to see maximum results. The order should be dumbbells first, regular barbells second and machines last. Doing exercises in this order will ensure that you don’t get fatigued too early in your workout, by engaging in the more labor-intensive equipment first. This also works your muscles out, from smaller to larger.

You can prevent illness if it is really difficult for you to exercise during the week or if you just don’t do it at all by adding two 20 minute aerobic or weight workout sessions to your weekly schedule. This small amount of exercise can help you avoid sick days.

When shopping for shoes for your fitness workouts, try going at the latter part of the day. This is because, at the end of the day, your feet swell and are at their largest. You should leave at least half an inch between your toe and the end of the shoe.

Giving a part of your home or your car a deep cleaning will not only improve the look of your house or vehicle but burn a lot of calories. Going to the gym or setting a time to exercise is not always necessary when you keep active and do high-intensity activities.

Before you begin squatting heavy weight, you must practice squatting with proper form. First, you should stand in front of a bench. Then, as you squat down, you should imagine that you are about to sit down. As your butt touches the bench, push back up. Attempt this with a light bar and as you improve gradually increase your weight.

When you are doing your working routine, try not to use a weight belt. Constantly using a weight belt can actually weaken the muscles in your lower back and abdominal muscles. Use it only when you are going to do maximal lifts in exercises including the overhead press, deadlifts, and squats.

A great fitness tip that can help you lift more weight is to start developing your weaker muscles. Sometimes it’s your weaker muscles that are preventing you from increasing the weight you can lift. By developing these weak muscles, you’ll be surprised at how much more you can lift.

The fitness of your chest if very important when dealing with structure and form while working out. If you want to achieve a balanced workout, you must work your chest as well as your other muscle groups. If you only work out your chest, these muscles will grow stronger disproportional to the rest of your muscles.

Walking is one of the best ways to maintain good fitness. It is a low impact exercise so it is easy for people of all ages. You can incorporate it easily by walking to the places you frequent that are near you. Walking provides a fantastic aerobic workout if you maintain an appropriate pace.

As a fit individual, you enjoy a world of benefits for both your mind and body. Use the information shared here. By following these tips, you will soon see your fitness level start to improve. editor@urbanmediatoday.com

Pitt Football Announces 2017 Promotions Schedule

Panthers Unveil Promotional Events for All Seven Heinz Field Games


PITTSBURGH—The University of Pittsburgh’s football promotional days have been unveiled for the 2017 season.


Sept. 2, Youngstown State, “Hail to Heroes”  / “Heinz Field Rib Festival”

Pitt will once again pay tribute to our heroes in the armed services and our community as all active, reserve and retired military personnel and first responders are invited to attend. Our heroes may claim up to four (4) tickets to the game by visiting our Hail To Heroes website.


The first 20,000 fans in attendance will receive a limited edition “Stars and Stripes” Pitt Script Magnet Decal.


Sept. 16, Oklahoma State, “Faculty and Staff Appreciation”

All Pitt faculty and staff are eligible for a special buy-one, get-one free ticket offer to the game against the Cowboys.


For more details and ticket information visit the Faculty/Staff website.


Sept. 30, Rice, “Jr. Panthers Day”

As part of Jr. Panthers Day, kids in 8th grade and under will have the opportunity to watch warmups on the field prior to the game.


For more details and ticket information visit the Jr. Panthers Day website.


Oct. 14, NC State, “Homecoming”

Always one of the most festive weekends on the Pitt calendar, details for Homecoming 2017 can be found at the Pitt Alumni Association’s official Homecoming website.


The first 40,000 fans will receive a complimentary Pitt Cheer Banner sponsored by the Pitt Alumni Association.


Oct. 28, Virginia, “Family Weekend” / “Breast Cancer Awareness” / “Band and Cheer Day” / “Youth Football Day” / “Scout Day”

The Panthers are proud to support the fight against breast cancer by promoting the importance of early detection.


Parents and families are invited to join us for the University’s annual Family Weekend. For more details on tickets and events with Pitt Family Weekend website.


High school bands and cheerleading squads add to the day’s pageantry as they participate in Pitt’s pregame concert, March to Victory, Halftime and other in-game performances. All details can be found on our Band Day or Cheer Day websites.


Scouts and Youth Football teams are encouraged to join us pregame for an exclusive chalk talk and on-field opportunities.


Nov. 9 (Thurs.), North Carolina, “Star Wars Night”

Join us for this primetime national television game against the Tar Heels.


The evening will be highlighted by a Star Wars themed halftime by the Pitt Marching Band. More details to come.


Nov. 24 (Fri.), Miami, “Senior Day” / “Jr. Panthers Day

Miami comes to town as Pitt honors its seniors in the 2017 Heinz Field finale.


The Panthers will host another Jr. Panthers Day with the opportunity for kids in 8th grade and under to watch warmups from the sidelines.


Bryant Practices as Steelers Prep for Falcons

Fresh off their 20-12 Preseason win over the NY Giants, the Pittsburgh Steelers resumed practice at St. Vincent’s College and on Sunday, they were joined by one who hadn’t practiced there since 2015, WR Martavis Bryant. The 2014 Draft Pick was suspended for the 2015 season for violating the NFL’s substance abuse policy and he was conditionally reinstated in the Spring but was unable to practice with the team until he was fully reinstated last Wednesday.

“I felt great,” Said Bryant “ I have a little rust on me, I just have to get in shape and be here every day to get better. I’m in grate shape outside of football. It’s different when you have people puling on you and running with pads. I just have to come out here and run hard every day and I’ll be fine. I still have a lot of work to do. When the time comes, I’ll be ready to go.”

“He looked like Martavis.” Steelers HC Mike Tomlin said when asked about his WR “He’s a talented athlete and in good condition, but that’s just the element of it. Knocking the rust off and getting acclimated with what requires to win on this level will be a process. So it will be fun to watch him work through it.”

On Saturday, 24/7 Sports quoted Bryant as “Happy the process went through and happy to be out with my brothers playing football. Bryant did not play in the Steelers Preseason opener, and it’s still not known if he will play when the Steelers take on the Atlanta Falcons next Sunday at Heinz Field. The game will be at 4 pm.

One of Bryant’s goals should be to play a full-16 game schedule, something he hasn’t done since being selected by the Steelers in the 4th Round by the Steelers in 2014. His rookie season can be excused because he wasn’t activated until Week 7 in which his first reception was a 35-yard TD pass in a Steelers victory vs. the Houston Texans. He then went onto finish with 549 yards on only 26 receptions and 8 scores. He even scored a touchdown in the Wild Card playoff loss to the Baltimore Ravens. For his efforts, he was named Steelers Rookie of the Year by his teammates.

And then the suspensions came. In 2015, Bryant has suspended the first 4 games for violating the NFL’s substance abuse policy. But when he returned, he went right to work as he scored a touchdown in his first game against the Kansas City Chiefs and finished the season with even better Stats: 50 receptions for 765 yards and 6 scores. He even had a touchdown in the Steelers Wild Card win vs. Cincinnati in which he caught a spectacular pass for QB Ben Roethlisberger and somersaulted into the end zone.

During his suspension in 2016, the Steelers used several receivers in his place: Sammie Coates, Cobi Hamilton, Darius Heyward-Bey and DeMarcus Ayers. Each of those players had their moments, but none could duplicate what Bryant did. Many persons feel like Bryant could’ve made a huge difference in the Steelers AFC Championship Game vs. the New England Patriots. All-Pro WR Antonio Brown and 2nd-year player Eli Rogers did all they could do, but it was obvious that they missed Bryant.

In the offseason, the Steelers picked up speeds WR Justin Hunter and drafted JuJu Smith Shuster out of USC. The Still have Coates who is on the Physically Unable to Perform List as well as Hamilton (who caught a TD against the Giants), Ayers and Heyward-Bey. But the return of Bryant is huge as it once again pairs him with Brown to form a dangerous 1-2 WR punch.

As for the rest of camp, Tomlin had this to say: “It’s been a really productive day for us. It started with a tape study and our ability to evaluate our play and make necessary adjustments is a big part of team development. We had good energy at practice with guys returning who had missed some time. So a lot of productive things today and we’re ready to push forward and stay in training camp mode.”

Notes: CB Artie Burns who missed a week with a knee injury, returned to practice, and RB James Conner, CB Cam Sutton, and Smith-Shuster were limited. Smith-Shuster suffered a concussion in the game vs. the Giants and has been evaluated. Conner hasn’t been a full-time participant since injuring his shoulder 2 weeks ago.


Veteran players who didn’t practice: LB Ryan Shazier, S Mike Mitchell, LB Anthony Chickillo, Senquez Golson, Coates, and Ayers. All-Pro C Maurkise Pouncey also didn’t practice, but it was an excused absence.


Please e-mail Ray at ray@urbanmediatoday.com

Follow him @urbanmediaRay on twitter

Cancer-fighting superfoods you should eat


The food that we eat either hurts us or helps us. If our diet is overloaded with fat, sodium of sugar then over time it’s going to hurt us. It’s going to put us more at risk for heart disease, diabetes and several types of cancer. Yet, if we eat a high protein and low-fat diet, the chances of encountering any of those illnesses significantly drop. Your lifespan increases and your heart gets stronger. If your goal is to beat cancer, incorporate the following foods as much as possible. You’re going to find that your body feels so much better!


Consider adding onions to your diet. I never really enjoyed onions until I tried them on a sandwich. Now I eat onions practically on anything. Onions are an excellent source of biotin. This helps to reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes and regulate your blood sugar. Eating onions is also a way to keep your skin healthy and reduce your way of encountering hair loss. It has a considerable amount of vitamin C, which not only boosts your immune system but helps to protect it against colds. Likewise, onions help to lower blood pressure and relieve stress.

Mushrooms are another cancer-fighting superfood. It’s been studied that this vegetable can help keep your weight under control. This is effective when people replace red meat with white mushrooms. Over time, people can drop a significant amount of weight which reduces their risk of obesity. The white mushrooms, too, have been shown to reduce breast cancer in both men and women. This may be due to the fact that this s superfood is so rich in fiber. It boosts your immune system and helps it to fight off viruses.

Sweet potatoes are a powerhouse of cancer-fighting minerals and vitamins. Sweet potatoes are considered to be a squash. They are in the same family as pumpkin. This vegetable has high amounts of vitamin A (which is good for your eyes) and turmeric, which fights cancerous tumors throughout the body. Most people eat this vegetable at Thanksgiving with marshmallows on top but enjoy all year. Add it as a side dish to soup or make it into fries. It’s going to keep you healthy and your heart strong.

Broccoli, too, is another cancer-fighting food. It works to remove cholesterol from your body, which ultimately reduces your likeliness of a heart attack or stroke. Broccoli is also a powerhouse of vitamin K. This vitamin works to keep your bones strong and healthy. Vitamin C, too, is also a rich source of broccoli, This is going to actively promote wound healing while boosting your immune system to fight off dangerous bacteria. Broccoli can be used creatively in any culinary dish. Experiment with it and you’ll find that this delicious vegetable is worth its effort to fight cancer.

Finally, pumpkin can help you prevent cancer. This autumn vegetable is an excellent source of vitamin A, which promotes perfect eye sight. It strengthens your eyes to see better in dim lights. Pumpkin is also a great food to spark weight loss. It’s going trim your body of unneeded weight through its fiber and keep you full for longer. In turn, this is going to lower your risk of diabetes and obesity which go hand-in-hand in lowering your cancer risk. Let’s not forget, too, that pumpkin can strengthen your heart. Pumpkin seeds, for instance, have been shown to lower bad cholesterol. This reduces your risk of a heart attack. Incorporating these foods is going to be a game changer. Find new, innovative ways to eat them and your health will be better off for it. editor@urbanmediatoday.com

2017 Pitt Football Camp

Pitt Prepared for Saturday’s Crucial Scrimmage at Heinz Field


PITTSBURGH—The Pitt football team practiced for the 10th time of training camp on Friday at the UPMC Sports Performance Complex as the Panthers finalized preparations for Saturday’s Heinz Field scrimmage.


Head coach Pat Narduzzi held his regular morning media session before practice, while secondary coach Renaldo Hill and five players—wide receiver and kick returner Quadree Henderson, defensive end Rashad Weaver, defensive back Jazzee Stocker, offensive lineman Jerry Drake Jr. and linebacker Jalen Williams—each spoke to the assembled media after the Panthers’ workout.


Head Coach Pat Narduzzi – Interview Video


Opening statement:

“We finished up a great day yesterday, so it is a little lighter day today. These guys are excited about coming out in what we call “spider pads” today, so there will be a lot less contact. Hopefully, they are mature enough to practice in those. Sometimes, different teams, especially a young football team, think that it is going to be a day off, but there are no days off during camp. Sunday is their day off, I guess.  They have to be able to maturely practice in those things. We could come out in full pads today and scrimmage tomorrow. It does not make any difference to me, but we try to mentally freshen them up for a big day tomorrow. We get to go to Heinz field, which will probably be the biggest scrimmage of the year. Then I will say that the next one is the biggest of the year because it is the next one, but it’s a big scrimmage to find out where we are.”


On if he has made any changes to his defense since coming to Pitt three years ago:

”Hopefully, we are doing it better, but we are doing the little things. You have to adjust; I don’t care if it’s offensively, defensively or special teams, you have to adjust with the times. There’s always different tweaks that we have going on. We did a year ago, not that it mattered, but you are always looking for different stuff. That’s how we evolve. You are not going to change your overall structure, but there are techniques and fundamentals that you try to do a little bit better. I think that we have some good stuff.”


On what beyond schematics is the most important factor in being successful:

“It’s called development. I have been around the staff rooms. I got hired by Miami (Ohio) back in March of 2003, seven days before spring ball started and inherited the staff. When I got there, it was like, ‘why are you doing this?’ Well, we couldn’t stop that, so we went and started putting this defense in. You can’t just keep changing defenses to stop a play, a formation or a type of offense because you don’t get any type of consistency. You need a base, a fundamental background to go from, then you tweak based on [the offense]. Our offense does some crazy stuff, and we face some crazy offenses, so it couldn’t be a better offense so go against, because you see everything. You see everything from a wish-bone, three-back offense to an empty set. So, our defense, when they come out of camp, will have a good base on all kinds of offensive plays.”


On if this year’s offensive line is the deepest he’s had at Pitt:

“No, I would say last year was pretty deep, even though we didn’t see a lot of guys. When you say ‘deep,’ you have some guys who are getting better every day, but last year we had a lot of older guys. I would say last year was pretty good. I don’t know if you could beat that one. I think maybe in a couple of years, we can get there, but I would not say that.”


On if he has seen Quadree Henderson improve as a wide receiver:

“He had a great catch yesterday, and I think that we have. I have seen little things out there. It’s hard to say, ‘you won’t find out until game day,’ but I know that he is focusing on that and getting better.”


On if Maurice Ffrench’s role will increase in the offense due to Tre Tipton’s injury:

“No question about it. Maurice is a great player offensively and defensively, and anytime a guy goes down, it’s that next-guy-up mentality. Whether Maurice beats out Tre Tipton in camp or Tre is not there and the job is there for the taking, Maurice is going to hopefully have a major part in this offense.”


On if he is picking the roommates for the players at the hotel:

“Oh, yeah. And it is a lot different than a year ago.  It’s like [Avonte] Maddox is rooming with ‘J.D.’ [Jerry] Drake [Jr.], and the first night he comes up and goes, ‘Coach, really? I have to room with J.D.?’ Now, he’s like his best friend. He’s texting me pictures of J.D., so it’s funny how that whole thing goes. They go, ‘Coach, I don’t even know that guy.’ Well, that’s why we put you with different people. And we try to always mix people up in the summer where we used to stay. We moved the freshmen in there and they had their freshman roommate for the rest of the year. Now we can put a senior with a freshman and really mix it up.”


On Ben DiNucci’s growth as a leader:

“Ben’s doing a good job. Could he get better? Yes. There are a lot of things, but Ben has grown a lot since he has gotten here. I think that he has grown a lot since that bowl game, and we’ll see how much more he grows. He’s still got ways to go.”


Secondary Coach Renaldo Hill 


On Bricen Garner developing as he gets more reps:

“It’s important for those guys to get reps and be able to see things constantly. Meeting time as well, and just continuing to go through that process and take as many notes as they can so that it continues to process a little faster.”


On if he is seeing players step up at safety with starting positions up for grabs:

“I am. They see it as an opportunity there and they are definitely attacking it. That’s what we need, and I think it will make the group stronger even when Jordan returns. But we’re happy with how Bricen [Garner] and [Jazzee] Stocker, along with those other guys, are competing at the positions.”


On Henry Miller’s role:

“He’s like a wild-card guy. He’s a guy who can go out and play corner. He’s big enough to play both safety positions and probably even a linebacker spot. He definitely gives you a variety of things that you can do when you look at his size and skillset. We’re just going to continue to get him in the meeting room, increase his knowledge and show that he can play fast and use all of that ability that he has.”


On press coverage:

“When we talk about it, that’s the first thing you do when you go to a camp. Those guys, you may give them all the twos to plan off. As soon as they get the chance to get the one-on-ones, they’re in press. It’s easier to teach. You can minimize the routes based on where their release is at. That definitely will help us and we can even shorten it by down-and-distance or personnel group inside. It allows our group to play fast, and that’s what they like to do. We want to keep them up there and let them get after it.”


On man-to-man coverage:

“They enjoy it and they embrace it. When you click on the TV and the National Football League, that’s all those guys do. I tell them that if they want to play at the next level, you’ve got to be able to press coverage.”


On Phil Campbell’s physicality makes him a good fit for the boundary safety position:

“Definitely. He sees the ball and goes and gets the ball. That’s what Phil does, and he’s an attack guy downhill. He’s not letting up; he’s not going to be timid around the pile. You need that enforcer back there, and we’re hoping that’s something he can provide for our unit.” 

Ray Jr on Sports

  1. Pirates take 3 of 4 from Tigers-The Pittsburgh Pirates continue to fight as they beat the Detroit Tigers 7-5 to take 3 of 4 in their home/away series. P Gerrit Cole (10-8) got the win and rookie 1B Josh Bell and Super Utility Man Sean Rodriguez both hit home runs. Closer Filepe Rivero earned his 11th It was a much-needed win for the Pirates after losing 10-0 to the Tigers and P Justin Verlander.
  2. NL Central Standings-despite the 57-58 record, the Pirates are still in the race for the NL Central. They still face an uphill battle because they trail Milwaukee (59-57), St. Louis (58-56) and NL Central leader Chicago (59-54). I like the Pirates chances if they can get over .500 and they have a chance to do so if they can get some victories over the Toronto Blue Jays (53-60) which starts Friday.
  3. Josh Bell-I’ve said this before, this rookie first baseman is one of the positives for the Pirates as he hit his 20th HR in the 7-5 win. Bell now joins HOF Ralph Kiner and 2004 NL Rookie of the Year Jason Bell, Johnny Rizzo and Garrett Jones as the only Pirates rookies to hit at least 20 home runs. With almost 2 months left in the MLB season, it makes you wonder if he could get 30. I think it’s possible.
  4. NL Rookie of the Year Race-Despite his incredible rookie season, don’t expect Josh Bell to have a chance at the Rookie of the Year award, because of LA Dodgers rookie Cody Bellinger and his 33 home runs. He’ll probably get 40 before the year’s over. What a season for both of these young first basemen.
  5. AL Rookie of the Year? NY Yankees Aaron Judge, there’s no debate on this one. I’ll give you 99 (his jersey number), reasons why, but I’ll only share one: He leads the AL with 35 home runs and could also end up with 40 by October. He’s probably in line for the AL MVP award for the Wild Card leading Yankees.
  6. Pirates reacquire Rodriguez-In a stunning weekend move, the Pirates brought back the super Utility Player to add some power and bench help. Serpico (As he is nicknamed) hit 18 home runs last season before joining the Atlanta Braves. He even overcame a car accident, which many thought could cause him to miss the 2017 season. Rodriguez has 2 home runs since rejoining the Pirates.
  7. Indians add Jay Bruce-The defending AL Champions and AL Central leading Cleveland Indians made a move to shore up their postseason as they acquired OF Jay Bruce from the NY Mets for a prospect. They’re doing what contenders do, and I respect that. With the August deadline 3 weeks away, I think more moves will happen.
  8. Former Pirate pitcher sold for a dollar-This is not a joke. P Ernesto Frieri who played for the Pirates in 2014, was sold by the Texas Rangers to the Seattle Mariners for $1. Apparently, he’s not very good as he has a 5.14 ERA. But this isn’t the first time that the Mariners made this kind of deal. In April 2015, the team made a similar deal with the Chicago Cubs in exchange for Tony Zych. Shrewd.
  9. Steelers WR Martavis Bryant cleared for practice-The Pittsburgh Steelers received some good news when Bryant was cleared to practice with the team. He was conditionally suspended earlier this season but was allowed to practice in mini-camp. Apparently, the NFL wants to make sure Bryant has learned his lesson and I don’t blame them.
  10. Steelers play the first Preseason Friday-The NFL Preseason is here and the Steelers will play their first game vs. the NY Giants Friday night at MetLife Stadium. I have always called preseason games a glorified sparring session, and I still call it that, but I also recognize that time as the rookie’s opportunity to make an impression.
  11. Rookie QB Josh Dobbs will start vs. Giants-Heres your chance to see what the Steelers rookie QB can do as Dobbs will start vs. the Giants. With backup QB Landry Jones still out with an injury, look for Dobbs to get a serious look in this game. Also look for rookie LB TJ Watt to get his chance on Friday. It will be interesting to see what they can do.
  12. Rookies Conner and Sutton out for Friday-It’s a shame when the injury bug bites the rookies and as a result, rookie RB Conner and CB Sutton won’t play Friday as a result of their respective injuries. RB Fitzgerald Touissant and veteran Knile Davis will get the leading RB snaps. Starters Ben Roethlisberger and Antonio Brown also will not play Friday for non-injury reasons.
  13. Le’Veon Bell’s status-It’s still the same. He’s still holding out by refusing to sign his $12 million franchise tender, although he’s sending social media pics of him working out. I think he’s selfish and unwise to hold out when he knows he has to sign that tender. He’s missing out on team chemistry in camp. It’s not just about being in shape.
  14. No Aaron Donald either-In addition to Bell, LA Rams (and current Pitt) DE Aaron Donald has chosen to hold out because he wants a new contract. As much as I dislike holdouts, I do see his point. He has already outplayed his rookie contract and he is one of the top pass-rushers in the NFL. Unlike Bell, Donald is under contract and the Rams could work out a new deal with him. This situation reminds me of when Jerome Bettis was there and he wanted a new deal. The only difference is, he didn’t hold out. But he was eventually traded to the Steelers.
  15. Pitt Football suffers potential loss-In an offseason in which they saw WR Tre Tipton lost for the season due to injury, the Pitt Panthers football team could lose another as FB George Aston as he was injured. To no surprise, HC Pat Narduzzi has no comment on the injury, but Aston is on crutches. In 2016, Aston had 10 touchdowns (5 rushing, 5 receiving) and has resembled former NFL FB Mike Alstott in this role.
  16. Browne, Ollison look like Pitt starters-As the College Football Season is 3 weeks away, it’s pretty obvious that you can expect graduate transfer QB Max Browne and RB Quadree Ollison to be starters when Pitt opens against Youngstown State. After watching both in the Spring game, I feel that both have enough experience to have earned it.
  17. Pitt Basketball adds player-The Pitt basketball team has added their 11th and final player when 6-8 forward Kenechukwu Chukwuka, a power forward from New Mexico Junior College, has committed to the team Tuesday. Chukwuka has 3 years of eligibility remaining.
  18. NBA Releases Christmas Schedule-Cleveland and Golden State will once again headline the NBA’s Christmas schedule this upcoming season. The Houston Rockets and San Antonio Spurs will also play Dec 25th.
  19. Cavs, Warriors will also play Opening night-The NBA Finalists will also be among several teams who will open the NBA season with Cleveland playing Boston as the first game and defending champ Golden State to play Houston at 10:30. Pretty exciting way to open the season.
  20. Knicks, Rockets re-engage in Melo talks-Apparently the Carmelo Anthony trade talks are back on as the NY Knicks and Rockets are discussing trade offers. I just knew that he was going to the Cavaliers, but apparently, Melo doesn’t want to play with his best friend LeBron James. The NBA can have more drama than soap operas sometimes.


Please email Ray at ray@urbanmediatoday.com

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How to Cut Your Food Bills

If you’re trying to save money, how about cutting your food bills? There are numerous ways to do this. Here are some simple ones for starters.


Make your own meals


Buy ingredients and cook your own meals, rather than incurring unnecessary expenses with ready-made ones. With careful selection and economical cooking methods, a substantial, tasty and well-balanced meal can be made cheaply. If you don’t enjoy cooking, use a simple recipe and lighten the chore with some music.


Make your own sweets and treats


Baking cakes and cookies can be quick and easy, and much cheaper than buying them. If sweet snacks are a must for you, invest in big packs of cheap-brand flour, sugar, eggs, and cocoa or other flavorings. Look up a simple recipe and start mixing.


Focus on vegetables


You can make a good meal with fresh vegetables and dried beans and pulses, all of which tend to be cheaper than meat. C heck vegetable prices before buying, as they vary widely and fluctuate with the seasons. Invest in resealable flavoring packages such as tomato paste, stock cubes, curry powder, yeast extract and gravy granules. Some pasta, rice, or noodles will provide a filling base, and a little-grated cheese will add richness.


Don’t waste food


Take care when calculating how much food to prepare. Save leftovers for use in the next meal, or freeze them.


Keep food fresh


Keep as much as possible of your perishable food in the fridge. Most fruits and vegetables don’t need to be kept cool but may last longer if they are. Opened jars of preserves such as pickle or marmalade will also last longer if refrigerated.


Avoid expensive drinks


For regular consumption, invest in bulk packs of tea, coffee, or whatever your favorite water-based beverage may be. Save costly alternatives, such as fruit juices and fizzy drinks, for treats.


Choose cheap brands


Low-cost brands are not necessarily inferior to dearer ones. Higher prices may just reflect fancy packaging. Buying in bulk is often cheaper for every day or long-life items, but compare prices before choosing. Take advantage of discounts, but don’t buy items just because they are reduced.


Take a packed lunch to work


Making a sandwich only takes a few minutes and is much cheaper than buying a ready-made lunch. If the sight of colleagues tucking into take-always makes you drool, treat yourself to one at the end of the week.


Shop with a list


Write a list before you shop and keep to it. Remember that your finances must come before your cream cake.


Avoid snacking when out


Snacks are expensive. If you anticipate needing a little something while out, take one of your homemade cookies.


Avoid eating out


Eating out can be a cash-drainer, so save this extravagance for a special event. If dining with a party, pay separately for your meal to avoid having to contribute toward extra dishes that you did not order or share.


Don’t be too generous a host


Playing host to your friends is fun, but there’s no need to go over the top with refreshments. Invite contributions, or warn guests that there will only be nibbles.


Cut back on fuel bills


Avoid travel expenses by ordering a supermarket delivery, or walking or cycling to the shops. You can also save fuel as you cook. Throw everything into one pan on one ring and simmer on a low heat, lid on. Avoid using the oven, which is costly, or microwave items first and pop them into a briefly warmed oven for a crisp-up before serving.


Now check your balance!


If you follow these practical steps, taking similar care in other spending areas, your bank balance will soon look healthier. For your final step, make cost-effective catering a habit, and reap the benefits forever.


Facts About Heart Disease

Many health conditions can result in what is termed heart diseases, such as arrhythmias, heart infections, coronary artery disease, diseases that affect blood vessels and congenital heart defects. The most common meaning of heart disease is any blockage in the blood vessels, arteries or the heart’s valves, which can result in a heart attack or stroke.


There are many things that put a person at a higher risk of developing heart disease. Some factors are out of a person’s control. For example, the older you are the more likely it is you will develop heart disease. Men are at an increased risk, but women’s risk goes up after menopause. Also, having a family history of heart disease makes it much more likely that you will experience the condition.


Not everything that increases a person’s risk for heart disease is out of that person’s control. Eating a poor diet that consists of high amounts of fat, salt and cholesterol increases the risk of heart disease. Smoking is another huge contributor to heart problems. Not managing high blood pressure or diabetes through medication and lifestyle changes also increases a person’s risk. Being overweight, leading a sedentary lifestyle and not properly managing stress are all things within a person’s scope of control that also increase his risk for heart disease.


How can someone tell they might have heart disease? There are several warning signs to watch for. Chest pain and shortness of breath are obvious symptoms, but many people write them off as indigestion or fatigue. If your legs or arms experience sudden pain, turn numb without reason or are constantly cold, this is a definite warning sign that something is wrong with your cardiovascular system. Other possible signs include experiencing lightheadedness on a regular basis, fainting and feeling a fluttering sensation in your chest.


If you suspect you or someone close to you is suffering from heart disease, medical attention is needed to properly diagnose and manage the situation. The doctor might prescribe medications to lower your blood pressure, thin out your blood or lower your cholesterol. If medications alone are not enough to manage your heart condition, the doctor might recommend undergoing various medical procedures such as angioplasty or coronary artery bypass surgery. editor@urbanmediatoday.com