AFTER a lacklustre response to a call for proposals for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, the Guyana Olympic Association (GOA) is now calling on its 23 affiliated sporting associations and federations to submit another proposal – this time one to be presented to the Pan American Sports Association (PASO) next week.GOA president K.A. Juman-Yassin is expected to be in Miami, USA next week, and according to him the associations have been asked to submit proposals. The deadline for the PASO proposals is tomorrow, June 21.“I’ve asked all the major sports to give us their plans and then we will compile it … because I have to go up to Miami to present our proposals to PASO to see what they would be able to give us.“We can’t get everything but I’m waiting to see what they (Associations) submit, so we can move forward, and when we put it to PASO to see what we can get.” Yassin admitted that only “four or five” of the associations submitted the previously-asked for ‘Tokyo 2020’ proposals for their athletes, which the GOA had requested since January.Proposals still haven’t been submitted by most of the associations, including major associations like athletics, whose president Aubrey Hutson admitted that the Athletics Association of Guyana (AAG) had not submitted. However, Yassin was tight-lipped on naming any of the tardy associations.Aside from athletics the other 22 sporting fraternities under the GOA are badminton, baseball, basketball, bodybuilding, boxing, canoeing, cycling, fencing, football, hockey, judo, karate, netball, rifle-shooting, rugby, weightlifting, table tennis, taekwondo, lawn tennis, swimming, squash and volleyball.Badminton, judo and boxing have all confirmed that they were among those fraternities that submitted their Tokyo proposals. The Tokyo 2020 proposal was expected to include plans of what each respective discipline wished to see happen to help prepare their athletes, from now, in the hope of having them qualify for the 2020 Olympics.However, the problem wasn’t just with the errant non-submitting associations.“A lot of the plans were not very good in detail,” Yassin said. He however is more optimistic about the PASO proposals.With the PASO proposal, he hopes for better submissions, as it asked specific questions and addressed specific areas. The PASO proposals are for support in the lead-up to the 2019 Pan American Games in Lima, Peru.This PASO proposal is expected to work in tandem with the Tokyo proposal, with Pan Am being just one year before the Olympics, and PASO being a subsidiary of the governing International Olympic Committee (IOC).“All of this will work in conjunction to that (the Tokyo 2020 plan) because this will go towards the Pan American Games in 2019 and then the following year is the (Tokyo) 2020,” Yassin explained.However, as it pertains to the Tokyo 2020 plan, up to late last month when contacted several of the associations appeared to have no knowledge of the request for the proposals.“Well, too bad for them. It’s a poor excuse,” Yassin remarked.“I’ve been sending the information to them. The office would have sent the information to them. Mr (Hector) Edwards would have sent the things to all the associations. And when we have council meetings every month we tell them, look we haven’t received it; please send in.”Yassin, however, admitted that not all of the associations have been up to date in attending the council meetings, which are held on the last Thursday of every month. That responsibility falls on the associations.Many of the associations themselves also admitted that their lack of attendance may have played a role.President of the Guyana Amateur Swimming Association (GASA) Ivan Persaud knew nothing of the plan last month. However he says he has since had an arrangement with the GOA to submit their proposal after they hold their Goodwill Swim Meet in August. Hockey and tennis, and rugby were also not aware.Bodybuilding president Coel Marks, noted that a recent change of executive left that fraternity in a bad position. Last month was the first GOA council meeting that the new executive attended.“We took over in February. The transition did not happen smoothly. So we now had to piece together a lot of information. So things are coming in bits and pieces, and now filling in the gaps. So I’m aware of it now and I will be sending a representative on the way forward.”
Wednesday morning’s football practice was more focused and intense compared to the previous day’s practice despite the over 90 degree temperature before 10 a.m. Head coach Steve Sarkisian said he was happy with the team’s energy and focus throughout practice.“The heat has been good for us,” Sarkisian said. “It’s a positive that we have to work through it.”Sarkisian sees practices as a whole as what’s most important for the team. He said when the team plays hard consistently throughout practice, that’s what prepares them for the games.“We have to be hard on one another because that’s going to make us better and help us perform better on Saturdays,” Sarkisian said.Sarkisian spoke about how true freshman inside linebacker Osa Masina has been playing much more confidently over the past two to three weeks and is playing to his strengths. Masina grabbed another interception during the team portion of practice Wednesday.Defensive coordinator Justin Wilcox also praised Masina’s performance after practice. Masina delivered an immediate impact for the Trojans in his debut after returning a fumble recovery 46 yards for a touchdown.Wilcox pointed out that the defense will continue to see a significant amount of substitutions. He’d like to continue to see a lot of balance in the number of snaps his plays see in each game. The team’s fluidity is dependent on themselves, not the opponent.“It’s about getting fresh bodies in the game,” Wilcox said. “Getting the guys who can help us win the game.”Though the defense played well and held Arkansas State to only a touchdown, Wilcox would like to the team fortify its coverage against dual threat quarterbacks.“We had chances to make some negative plays that we did not make,” Wilcox said. “Those things need to improve.”On offense, Sarkisian said he was was glad that the young offensive line was challenged against Arkansas State. He said that being challenged on the first series of the first game will be beneficial for the team later on in the season.“In the grand scheme of things, we’re still a little young,” Sarkisian said. “But I still think we are going to be very good.”Redshirt sophomore safety Chris Hawkins, who had an interception and a fumble recovery last game, thought that the defense’s performance as a unit was a good one with so many different players seeing playing time against Arkansas State.“It’s valuable to mix guys up,” Hawkins said. “It gets a lot of guys experience.”When it comes to Idaho, the team is not treating them any differently from a Pac-12 opponent.“We have to look at them as if they’re the best,” Hawkins said. “So we can do our jobs.”Sophomore wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster, likewise, isn’t taking the team’s week two opponent lightly.“Idaho is going to give it their all,” because they’re playing against USC,” Smith-Schuster said.Even though Smith-Schuster is only a sophomore, he’s already aiming to emerge as one of the team’s unsung leaders.“You don’t need a ‘C’ on your chest to be a captain,” he said.In practice, Smith-Schuster has been seen as the type of player who is always communicating with his teammates, on the field and on the sidelines.Against Arkansas State, Smith-Schuster was double-teamed frequently. Instead of becoming frustrated by double coverages, Smith-Schuster decided that he was going to embrace it and uses it as motivation.He is also happy about the advantage that the double-teams give to his teammates because it , in turn, makes it easier on them to get the ball and score.“If I win on double-team, it looks good for NFL scouts,” Smith-Schuster said. “I love it.”The No. 8 Trojans will return to Howard Jones Field for one final practice before taking on Idaho at the Coliseum on Saturday night.
Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on February 19, 2020 at 11:38 pm Contact Michael: firstname.lastname@example.org | @MikeJMcCleary Elijah Hughes baited his defender on the wing and cut backdoor toward the rim. It was the first day of live practice for John F. Kennedy Catholic (New York) High School in 2013, and during 3-on-3 drills head coach Al Morales was eager to unveil a 16-year-old Hughes. One who could pass like a point guard and score like a shooting guard. Two separate growth spurts led to a near overnight surge.Hughes received the pass inside and rose up. Nothing fancy: a two-handed dunk. He slammed it hard, though. Too hard. The rim burst off the backboard and sent Hughes crashing to the ground as shards of glass hailed down. Hughes felt the glass in his hair. “Am I bleeding? Am I bleeding?” Hughes frantically asked Morales.“To see it on TV is one thing,” Morales, who informed Hughes he was fine, said. “It was breathtaking.”AdvertisementThis is placeholder textCourtesy of Elijah Hughes’ FacebookFor years, Hughes has elevated his reputation through shooting and a strong feel for the game. But the most unheralded aspect of Hughes’ game is the athleticism that unlocks much of his arsenal. As the most experienced Syracuse (14-11, 7-7 Atlantic Coast) player, Hughes has been thrust into a role as its main offensive threat. The new role led to new expectations and new freedoms that allowed his athleticism to flourish on crossovers, quick first steps to the basket and powerful finishes at or around the rim.“I kind of always had a little boogie,” Hughes quipped in October. “I just really haven’t shown it.”At Syracuse, Hughes has flashed his athleticism with a rim-rattling dunk against Georgia Tech earlier in the season and quick bursts on drives to the rim against Florida State last Saturday. Over SU’s final stretch of the season, a hobbled Hughes will have to rely on that athleticism to carry a heavy workload for an SU team with dwindling NCAA Tournament chances.Hughes’ father, Wayne, said his son never had natural “Oh my goodness, this kid can fly” athleticism, so he learned how to dunk like most kids do: by lowering the adjustable hoop in his backyard to eight feet. Wayne and Hughes’ mother, Penny, remembered him jumping around outside every day, cocking his arm back and throwing down tomahawks and windmills. Hughes bumped it to nine feet, then messed around at regulation height.After Playmaker Academy AAU practices in the eighth grade, Hughes and his teammates stuck around to show off dunks sandwiched between multiple failed attempts. In a game later that year, Hughes’ teammate Justin Mitchell stole the ball and streaked down the court for a left-handed dunk. Hughes and his teammates erupted. No one had ever dunked in a game before. A few plays later, Hughes knocked the ball loose and did the same.“The whole team was hype,” Hughes’ then-head coach Ken Dawson said.Emily Steinberger | Design EditorFrom that point, it was “automatic,” Wayne said. Hughes parlayed his athleticism into other aspects of his game. Quick bounces on defensive plays has led him to become one of the top-15 shot-blockers in the ACC this season. He chases high after rebounds and elevates for a high release-point on layup finishes.“He jumped so high it scared me,” recalls Kelvin Jefferson, Hughes’ former South Kent (Connecticut) High School head coach.Dunk contest wins became a routine, and on Hughes’ first trip to Syracuse for the Elite Camp the Orange host each summer, he performed dunks in free time and attracted crowds, Beacon High School teacher Scott Timpano said.Kennedy Catholic teacher Brian Bruder and his son, Declan, sat in the stands at Kennedy Catholic as an 11th-grade Hughes broke away from defenders into the open court. The crowd braced for something amazing. “Appointment television,” Bruder said. Hughes unleashed a tomahawk dunk at the rim, and the crowd erupted.Bruder got home later that night and heard a thumping noise in Declan’s room. He opened the door, and Declan was jumping around, cocking back his arm and throwing down dunks into the plastic Nerf basketball hoop attached to the door.“What are you doing?” Bruder asked, laughing.The then-9-year-old Declan continued to jump around his room. He was just being a kid. And learning to dunk like Elijah Hughes. Comments