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Science Potpourri

first_imgReaders will note some candidates for Stupid Evolution Quote of the Week that got overlooked.Moral evolution:  In the Oct 6 issue, Michael Waldmann reviewed Moral Minds: How Nature Designed Our Universal Sense of Right and Wrong by Marc D. Hauser (Prentice-Hall, 2006) – an odd title mixing metaphors of naturalism and design.  As could be expected, morality is discussed in purely naturalistic terms of natural selection and neuroscience, ignoring centuries of theological and philosophical input on such a sensitive subject so close to the human heart.  This is true even though Waldmann praises Hauser at one point, “Although Hauser is not shy about his theoretical preferences, he presents alternative theories in a fair manner.”  The only alternatives mentioned by the author or reviewer, however, are those based on evolutionary assumptions.It’s painful to leave these articles behind without more detailed analysis, but after all, this is a “Headlines” website.  Readers interested in these topics are encouraged to go to the original sources for further study. Keep the Baloney Detector handy, though.  As the quotes from “Brainy ideas” bullet indicate, evolutionists perennially assume that blind processes of chance can produce exquisitely engineered products.  Once the Darwin Party is forced to back up these claims instead of asserting them unchallenged, the gig will be up, and design science will be back in vogue.    When Darwinism finally falls into the dustbin of history, a fresh new way of looking at the world will open up in art, science, literature, history and every other field of study.  Some of these ideas were investigated in a new book by Benjamin Wiker and Jonathan Witt, A Meaningful World: How the Arts & Sciences Reveal the Genius of Nature.  This book is getting rave reviews by leaders in the intelligent design community.  For instance, Michael Behe said, “A Meaningful World is simply the best book I’ve seen on the purposeful design of nature… the authors portray the depth, elegance, clarity and pure cleverness of a universe designed to nurture the intelligent life that one day would discover that design.  A Meaningful World recovers lost purpose not only for science, but for all scholarly disciplines.”  Chuck Colson in his BreakPoint commentary spoke highly of it and included links for further information.(Visited 10 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0 Interesting articles from recent issues of Science have piled up in the queue.  These might have made separate entries in CEH if time and space were unlimited.Deep Impact:  The team of the Deep Impact mission to a comet published spectral results in the July 13 issue.  “Emission signatures due to amorphous and crystalline silicates, amorphous carbon, carbonates, phyllosilicates, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, water gas and ice, and sulfides were found” in the plume of dust flung out by the probe.Keep on rovin’:  Steve Squyres and the Mars Exploration Rover team celebrated two years at Meridiani Planum by Opportunity in a paper on scientific results in the Sept 8 issue.  They argued that “ancient Meridiani once had abundant acidic groundwater, arid and oxidizing surface conditions, and occasional liquid flow on the surface.”  In the Sept 29 issue, Squyres and two colleagues discussed “Merging views on Mars,” about how data from orbiters and rovers is coming together to provide comprehensive models of Mars history.  They speculated, “Both the roughly neutral pH suggested by phyllosilicates and the lower pH suggested by sulfates could have produced habitable surface environments; the former may have been more suitable for the origin of life.”  Yet evidence for surface water appears local, not global.Plume gloom:  A major paradigm shift has been occurring in geology over the theory of mantle plumes and hotspots, and Science has had several stories on the controversy: On Sept 1, a Perspectives article discussed discrepancies with plume theory in its classic case, the Hawaiian seamount bend.  Also in the Sept 1 issue, another Perspectives piece asked if a chain of offshore Japanese volcanoes is “Another nail in the plume coffin?”  Three weeks later in the Sept 22 issue, Richard Kerr asked if plumes are phantom or real: “Seismologists probing the planet’s depths are generating tantalizing images, but whereas some researchers see signs of plumes feeding volcanic hot spots, others see noise.”Radiocarbonization:  Those interested in the assumptions behind radiocarbon dating should check Michael Balter’s article in the Sept 15 issue, “Radiocarbon dating’s final frontier.”  He talks about the “heroic and contentious effort” to calibrate the method to 50,000 years, but unveils how coming up with a “calibration curve” is a controversial matter.  Here’s a sample about Paul Mellars (U of Cambridge) that may raise eyebrows on how the sausage is made:Mellars insists that archaeologists can’t wait for a final calibration curve.  “Are we all really expected to keep studies of modern human origins on hold for the next 5 years, until they decide they’ve finally got the calibration act together?” he asks.  The working group, he argues, “has hijacked the term ‘calibration’ to mean an absolutely agreed, rubber stamped, legalistic, signed, sealed, and delivered curve.”  And even when the experts agree on a curve, Mellars says, it will not be “final and absolute” but “simply the best estimate from the data at the time.”Ocean motion:  Richard Kerr discussed a surprising discovery Sept 22 that plankton are a major factor in stirring the ocean.  This “preposterous” conclusion is supported by measurements of how krill descend into the depths during the day and ascent at night to feed.  The sheer numbers of these swimmers are a major factor in agitating ocean waters, and could be affecting global climate as well.  On Oct. 13, a press release about this was published from Florida State University.Asteroid puzzles:  Robert Clayton gave a summary of asteroid science in the Sept 22 issue.  One puzzle is interpreting oxygen isotope differences in terms of accretion history.  “An additional unsolved problem in planet formation is the possibility of large oxygen isotope differences between the Sun and the inner planets.”  Greenwood et al. discussed this in more detail, also in the Sept 22 issue.  They had to postulate that “intense asteroidal deformation accompanied planetary accretion in the early Solar System” was responsible for the stony-iron meteorites.    In the Oct 6 issue, Richard Kerr asked, “Has lazy mixing spoiled the primordial stew?”  Drawing on the studies of isotopic composition in meteorites, he warned that new findings “indicate that the notion of permanent layering in Earth’s depths may rest on shaky assumptions about the chemistry of the early solar system.”Lab goof?  Elisabeth Pennisi explored whether a previous claim that plants can recover their grandparent’s genomes was due to contamination in the lab, in the Sept 29 issue.  One lab can’t reproduce the other’s and vice versa.  The jury is still out, she concludes.Ribosome in focus:  Scientists continue to resolve more detail in the DNA-translating factory, the ribosome.  The Sept 7 issue had a paper on the structure of the 70S ribosome complexed with mRNA and tRNA, including details of the roles of metal ions and proteins in the intersubunit bridges.  The authors didn’t explain how these could have evolved, other than to say, twice, that they “had evolved” to do this or that function.Brainy ideas:  The Oct. 6 issue featured computational neuroscience, with no less than a dozen articles and book reviews on the subject.  Evolutionary neurologists strive to reduce everything, even human altruism and the moral sense, to the connections of neurons and the actions of neurotransmitters in the synapses.  Peter Stern and John Travis gave an overview of the field in Of Bytes and Brains.    When these articles mentioned evolution at all, most of them merely assumed it, such as this selection from Greg Miller’s An enterprising approach to brain science, which can be considered representative: “This memory-prediction framework has evolved to take advantage of the spatial and temporal structure in our surroundings, Hawkins says, which helps explain why brains easily do certain tasks that give computers fits.”  If you need more examples, here are the only three mentions of evolution in Ingrid Wickelgren’s piece, Vision’s grand theorist: [Eero] Simoncelli’s analyses have already solved several longstanding mysteries in visual science: for example, how the brain assembles a moving picture of the world and why humans drive too quickly in the fog.  He’s also helped explain how evolution may have sculpted the brain to respond ideally to the visual environment on Earth.Next, Simoncelli wanted to link his image analysis to the human visual system.  He hypothesized that evolution may have forced the brain to encode the visual world in the most efficient, mathematically optimal way.  Using that concept, Simoncelli and his colleagues reported in 2001 that the nonlinear responses of neurons, such as those in the primary visual cortex at the back of the brain, are well-matched to the statistical properties of the visual environment on Earth, that is, the mathematical patterns of lightness and darkness that recur in visual scenes.The result may help explain how evolution nudged certain visual neurons to be acutely sensitive to object edges and contours, for example.last_img read more

2016 National Farm Machinery Show Highlights

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest The 51st National Farm Machinery Show will host more than 300,000 attendees as they visit over 850 exhibitors covering 27 acres inside the Kentucky Expo Center. The Ohio Ag Net’s Ty Higgins found some of the highlights of the 2016 show.last_img

Mergers of banks unilateral, says Mamata in letter to PM

first_imgDescribing the merger of two banks with headquarters out of Kolkata as unilateral, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Friday wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi saying that she was “deeply concerned about the overall impact of knee-jerk merger move across the country with negative effects on the entire banking sector”. Ms Banerjee began her letter by expressing concern that “two public sector banks headquartered in Kolkata are being merged with banks headquartered in Delhi and Chennai respectively without any consultation with the State government or with the management of these two banks”. The Finance Ministry has decided to merge United Bank of India, headquartered in Kolkata, with Punjab National Bank with its head office in Delhi and also Allahabad Bank, headquartered in Kolkata, with Indian Bank with its head office in Chennai. According to Ms Banerjee the development “will adversely affect the development momentum of the State”. Ms Banerjee argued that UBI is convener of the State level Banking Committee through which the State government is lending to MSME, self help groups and farmer credit cards. “The merger of UBI with a Delhi headquartered bank (PNB) will destabilise and undermine the significant grassroots role of UBI, at a heavy cost to rural Bengal” she said.Fate of employees She also expressed concern about the fate of thousands of employees of both the banks. She pointed out that 6,598 employees of UBI and 4,201 employees of Allahabad Bank are working in the State.last_img read more

UST enters UAAP Finals, topples La Salle in 5 sets

first_imgUST Golden Tigresses. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netMANILA, Philippines—University of Santo Tomas finally ended La Salle’s decade-long reign on Sunday night. ADVERTISEMENT Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Rafael Nadal confident arriving in Madrid despite disappointing run Cayetano: Senate, Drilon to be blamed for SEA Games mess DA eyes importing ‘galunggong’ anew MOST READ The Tigresses made the finals for the first time in eight years. They will then face the winner in the other Final Four encounter between Far Eastern University and Ateneo on Wednesday.The celebration looked like a championship already as UST denied three-time defending champion La Salle a finals appearance for the first time in 11 years which saw the Lady Spikers winning six titles.“It’s a privilege for us to face defending champion La Salle. These big teams, La Salle, Ateneo and FEU we learned a lot from them,” said UST coach Kungfu Reyes.UST defeated La Salle twice in a row to earn the twice-to-beat incentive it never had to use. But most importantly, it emboldened the Tigresses to chase the title it last won nine years ago.Some 15,000 spectators inside the MOA Arena and thousands more on TV and internet followed the match.ADVERTISEMENT LATEST STORIES PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games PLAY LIST 02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss And right through the joyous aftermath, it vowed to bring back its own glory days that have been long-time coming.UST woke-up from its usual mid-game stupor to pull off a hard-fought 25-19, 25-19, 20-25, 23-25, 15-10 triumph and make the finals of the UAAP Season 81 women’s volleyball tournament at Mall of Asia Arena.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSPalace wants Cayetano’s PHISGOC Foundation probed over corruption chargesSPORTSSingapore latest to raise issue on SEA Games food, logistics“When I entered college this year my promise was to bring back the glory days of UST because it’s been a long time,” said UST top rookie Eya Laure after dropping 27 points, including the one that clinched the win.It’s still a long way to go, but the 20-year-old spiker at least managed to bring the Tigresses closer to their goal.center_img Philippine Arena Interchange inaugurated View comments Hontiveros presses for security audit of national power grid Panelo: Duterte ‘angry’ with SEA Games hosting hassles SEA Games hosting troubles anger Duterte Big chunk of them UST alumni longing for that golden era in late 80s and early 90s where the Tigresses won seven straight crowns.“It’s not over yet. We still have one goal. We want to win the title. We owe it to the supporters, alumni who continue to believe in us,” said UST’s captain Sisi Rondina who fired 17 points.UST gave away 26 points on unforced errors in the third and fourth sets as it got lulled into complacency, something that usually happens this season when it appeared to have the match under control.“I told my teammates let’s not relax. We don’t want to be complacent,” said Laure.But that’s exactly what Tigresses did, allowing the Lady Spikers to get back into the match despite holding a 15-11 lead in the third set.Fortunately, everything clicked for UST in the fifth as it got big points from secondary options like Caitlyn Viray and even setter Alina Bicar.Viray finished with 10 points, while KC Galdones added 11 for UST. Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting Ethel Booba twits Mocha over 2 toilets in one cubicle at SEA Games venuelast_img read more

a month agoArsenal director Venkatesham plays down January transfers: It must be tactical

first_imgTagsTransfersAbout the authorFreddie TaylorShare the loveHave your say Arsenal director Venkatesham plays down January transfers: It must be tacticalby Freddie Taylora month agoSend to a friendShare the loveArsenal’s managing director Vinai Venkatesham has played down the likelihood of the club making moves in the January transfer window.The Gunners were active in the summer market, signing Nicolas Pepe, William Saliba, Kieran Tierney, Dani Ceballos, David Luiz and Gabriel Martinelli.But Venkatesham says any more signings in January will only come out of necessity.He told Bloomberg: “Well listen, we’ve just been through the transfer period in the summer, that’s what we always call the main transfer window. “We were very aggressive in that transfer window, signing a number of new players that we’re very excited about, predominately targeting young players that we believe can grow and develop with us over future years. “When we look forward to January, we’ll see when January comes. I’d say that we always treat the summer window as being the more strategic window.The January window is the one where you need to be a bit more tactical, maybe responding to an injury or another demand. But really our work is done in the summer and we’re really pleased with what we did in the summer.’Asked whether the defence would be strengthened again, he continued: “Listen, as I’ve said, we’ve been really focused over the summer, we made some defensive reinforcements signing David Luiz from Chelsea and Kieran Tierney from Celtic.”We’re looking forward to seeing how those players progress and how they do over the course of the season. “The players that we look for are the players we believe will make the biggest impact on the pitch from a sporting perspective.” last_img read more

Conservation groups file lawsuit to protect endangered killer whales

first_imgVANCOUVER – A collection of conservation groups has teamed up to launch legal action aimed at protecting endangered southern resident killer whales.The groups said Wednesday that the federal government failed to recommend an emergency order to protect the whales under the Species at Risk Act and they want a Federal Court to review that decision.Margot Venton, a lawyer and nature program director at Ecojustice, said they want the court to force the ministers to address existing imminent threats to the whales with an emergency order under the act.The order is a legal tool that enables the government to fast-track protection for critically endangered populations like the southern residents, she said.“The whales need a quieter ocean with more fish to eat, and they don’t have that right now,” she said. “The whales’ situation is not improving, and in these dire circumstances the groups are left with no choice but to go to court to force the federal government to act.”There are just 75 southern resident whales remaining and their critical situation has been highlighted in the recent attempt by experts to save the life of a young, emaciated killer whale within the pod.Also this summer, a female orca from the same pod pushed the body of her dead calf for more than two weeks when it died shortly after birth in July.The other groups taking part in the legal action are the David Suzuki Foundation, the Georgia Strait Alliance, the Natural Resources Defense Council, the Raincoast Conservation Foundation and the World Wildlife Fund Canada.In January, the same groups petitioned the federal government to use the emergency order power to protect the unique whales, Venton said.The federal government closed down several recreational and commercial chinook fisheries off the B.C. coast in May in an effort to free up more the fish for the whales. Chinook is a favoured meal for the resident killer whales that are found in coastal waters between B.C. and California.The fisheries and environment ministers said then that a lack of prey for the whales was one of the critical factors affecting their recovery.“The law is very clear,” Venton said. “Once the ministers determine the threats are imminent they must recommend cabinet issue an emergency order. Legal protections already exist and unfortunately the ministers have failed to meet this responsibility”Fisheries Minister Jonathan Wilkinson said in an emailed statement that the government is committed to protecting species at risk.“Our government has taken unprecedented, sustained, ambitious action over the past two years to protect and recover the southern resident killer whale,” he said.Measures in the $170-million whales action plan include reducing chinook fisheries, funding wastewater treatment facilities, implementing vessel slowdowns and moving shipping lanes to reduce noise, and conducting additional research in contaminants and more, the statement said.In response to requests from environmental and industry stakeholders the government has convened a working group to monitor implementation and to discuss additional measures that may be required, the minister said.“We are committed to working collaboratively with all willing partners, including Indigenous communities to ensure that we effectively protect and recover this iconic species.”Michael Jasny, marine mammals director for the Natural Resources Defense Council said it’s not that the government is doing nothing, but that it isn’t acting in a way that fully addresses the threats that face the whales.“And that’s not just us saying that, that’s not just science saying that, it’s what the government itself acknowledged.”last_img read more

Don McKellar has a message for filmmakers who want to stay in

first_img Twitter Advertisement Facebook LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Login/Register With: This weekend, Don McKellar’s apocalyptic directorial debut Last Night continues 11 straight Saturdays of classic Canadian on the CBC. But before the big show, McKellar himself will sit down for an interview on the latest episode of The Filmmakers, CBC Arts’ new film talk show. And in the above video, we’re offering up a little tease, which includes some sound advice for any Canadians wanting to follow in McKellar’s footsteps.“If you want to just make money, then you should go to the States, because you’re not going to do that here,” McKellar says. “What you do have that to compensate for that is control, and the possibility to work with likeminded people and create a vision together that is distinctive.” Advertisementlast_img read more

World Cup Crib Notes Day 15

The Americans will be looking to match the Germans better than they did in 2002, which will be difficult against a German offense that is the second-strongest in the tournament (with a 3.2 SPI offensive score). At a minimum, a draw would send the Americans to the knockout stage, so a 0-0 scoreline will suffice. But the Germans are a full goal ahead of the Americans in projected goals for this match (2.1 to 0.9, to be exact), so shutting them out won’t be easy.There are no players left on the American roster who played in that 2002 game, but the U.S. is equipped with a roster full of German-Americans. Fabian Johnson, John Brooks, Julian Green, Jermaine Jones and Timmy Chandler are all of German-American descent, which perhaps isn’t very surprising given head coach Jurgen Klinsmann’s German roots. Johnson and Jones spent time on Germany’s youth national teams, and four U.S. players (Chandler, Green, Brooks and Johnson) currently play in the Bundesliga. All of this to say that there might be even more at stake on Thursday for some of these players than the numbers suggest.YESTERDAYThe Argentina-Nigeria game started with a flourish, as Lionel Messi’s third-minute opener was matched by Ahmed Musa’s fourth-minute equalizer. It was the first time in World Cup history that both teams scored within the first five minutes of a match. And to follow it up, in the second half, Musa scored in the 47th minute and Marcos Rojo the 50th.Messi’s opening goal was the first conceded by Nigeria; entering the match, the Super Eagles were the only team that had not allowed a goal in this year’s tournament. Messi’s second goal came from a free kick, something and somewhere commonplace for him but rare for Argentina in the World Cup.  Messi has scored three of his five career World Cup goals from outside the penalty area, and his nine free kick goals over the past four La Liga seasons are second only to Cristiano Ronaldo’s 13. But it was Argentina’s first free kick goal in the World Cup since 1982.Messi’s second goal gave Argentina the lead just before halftime, essentially guaranteeing La Albiceleste the win. Argentina is now 28-1-0 in World Cup matches when leading at half, with its single loss coming in the 1930 final to Uruguay. Messi also became the third player at this year’s tournament with a multi-goal first half (Switzerland’s Xherdan Shaqiri later became the fourth), something that no player managed in the 2010 tournament.Although Nigeria lost, it became the first African team to advance to the knockout stage for a third time. Musa’s brace was the first for Nigeria in its World Cup history, and Nigeria passed Cameroon for the most goals by an African nation in the World Cup. France and Ecuador played to a scoreless draw, good enough for France to win Group E.  The French had the advantage throughout the match, finishing with 242 touches in the attacking third compared to 57 for Ecuador. But France was held scoreless in large part thanks to Ecuadorian goalkeeper Alexander Dominguez, whose nine saves are tied for the most in a match this tournament. He leads all players with 18 total saves.The Swiss finished second in Group E , thanks to a hat trick from Shaqiri — the first by a Swiss player in the World Cup since Josef “Seppe” Hugi in 1954. The game also marked the first time Switzerland scored three goals in a World Cup match since 1994. — Jacob Nitzberg, senior stats analyst for ESPNOFF THE PITCHThe United States and Germany have an interesting historical relationship, to say the least. The strong ties between the world powers are well known, despite recent hiccups, such as the revelation that the American National Security Agency had been spying on German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Germans and Americans also often visit each other’s countries and even migrate between them. According to the OECD International Migration Database, 20,149 American nationals migrated to Germany in 2011, and 6,125 German nationals moved in the other direction. This may seem like a big disparity, but when adjusted for total population, just about .001 percent more Germans per capita migrated to the U.S. than the other way around. Cross-tourism data shows a similar relationship. The U.S. Department of Commerce reports that 1.88 million Germans visited the United States in 2012, while the German National Tourist Board shows that 4.85 million Americans spent time in Germany the same year. — Hayley MunguiaFURTHER READINGIt’s Judgment Day in World Cup Groups G and HWas the U.S. Robbed Against Portugal? It Depends on What Time MeansHome or Away: Where Does the Future Lie for the USMNT and American Soccer?CORRECTION (June 26, 10:21 a.m.): An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated that Landon Donovan would have been the only returning player on the U.S. team this year from the 2002 World Cup quarterfinals. Demarcus Beasley is on the current roster and was on the 2002 team, but didn’t play in that quarterfinals match.CORRECTION (June 26, 10:58 a.m.): Previously, this story mistakenly said that any two teams from Group G could move on to the next round of the tournament. While any one team can still advance, there is one combination of two teams — Ghana and Portugal — that cannot advance together. As if you needed any data to tell you why you should watch Thursday’s U.S. vs. Germany game (and the Portugal vs. Ghana match, if you’ve got a split-screen setup), but we’re going to give it to you anyway.U.S. vs. Germany 12 p.m. EDTPortugal vs. Ghana 12 p.m. EDTAlgeria vs. Russia 4 p.m. EDTSouth Korea vs. Belgium 4 p.m. EDTIN BRIEFSee our World Cup predictions for the latest probabilities.IN DEPTHGroup G has shaped up to be one of the most exciting yet-to-be-decided groups of the tournament — as it stands, no team is mathematically guaranteed to advance (though Germany is very close at 99.7 percent). The are a huge number of possible outcomes of Thursday’s matches, and any team can technically still advance to the next stage of the tournament.If the uncertainty of Group G isn’t enough to make you tune in, the level of play we’re expecting to see between the U.S. and Germany should; the teams’ combined Soccer Power Index scores is higher than that of any two teams playing Thursday. Although the odds are heavily favored for Germany (63.4 percent to the U.S.’s 14.8 percent), we don’t expect this game to be a blowout (see Belgium vs. South Korea for that).In their last meeting, a June 2013 friendly, the U.S. beat Germany 4-3. But friendlies are friendlies; the teams’ last competitive encounter was at the 2002 World Cup quarterfinals, when the Germans edged the Americans 1-0 in what is considered one of the best U.S. performances at any World Cup. (The U.S. did reach the semifinals at the inaugural 1930 World Cup.) read more

Ameryst Alston solidifying place in Ohio State womens basketball history

OSU senior guard Ameryst Alston (14) drives to the hoop during a game against Northwestern on Jan. 28 at the Schottenstein Center. Credit: Samantha Hollingshead | Photo EditorAs the sunset fell on the Charleston Harbor in South Carolina in November 2012, the rays radiating into the faces of the Ohio State and Notre Dame women’s basketball players during the Carrier Classic, then-freshman guard Ameryst Alston lined up on the charity stripe for the first time in her collegiate career.After a couple of warmup dribbles to get a feel of the leather ball, Alston hit nothing but nylon to score her first point sporting the scarlet and gray.The first-year player would finish the game only scoring three points in the 21 minutes that she played, but, as the season progressed, Alston created a name for herself in the Buckeye rotation. Eventually, she would become one of the more pivotal players in the program’s history.Fast forward three years, 12 weeks and three days, and there was just under 1:30 to play in the third quarter in the Carver-Hawkeye Arena in Iowa City, Iowa. The No. 7 ranked Buckeyes were leading the Iowa Hawkeyes at their home gym, 76-59. As the clock ticked down, Alston, now a senior, made a stutter-step move from the right wing toward the basket, dribbling to the opposite side of the cylinder, where she pulled up and connected on a short jumper. Usually, a late-game score to put a team up 19 points like Alston’s would be nothing but a trifling tally on a box score. Except that pull-up jumper was not usual — it was historic. With the make, Alston surpassed the 2,000-point scoring mark, making her only the sixth OSU women’s basketball player to achieve the milestone. Instead of cracking an immediate smile and having play stop to send the ball over to the bench to celebrate an archival moment of her career, Alston did what she had done after scoring all the other 1,998 points over the past four years: hustle down to the other end of the court to play defense.That is just who Alston is: a selfless player who is obsessed with earning team accomplishments instead of impressive individual accolades.  “I’m really close with her, and I didn’t even know she was close to 2,000 points,” senior guard and four-year teammate Cait Craft said. “She never spoke about it, and even when she scored her 1,000th, I had no idea it was coming.”Alston was solely a role player when she came onto the scene in Columbus. It wasn’t necessarily her fault, though, as it was just because of all the talent that the Buckeyes had at the time, including Tayler Hill (who Alston just passed on the scoring list) and Amber Stokes, both of whom would go on to sign professional contracts.OSU senior guard Ameryst Alston (14) dribbles the ball during a game against Northwestern on Jan. 28 at the Schottenstein Center. Credit: Samantha Hollingshead | Photo EditorAt the time, Jim Foster was at the helm of the OSU program, but he would be relieved from the position for a lack of postseason victories.The program then turned to former Washington coach Kevin McGuff in April 2013 for guidance.Upon arrival in Ohio’s capital city, McGuff said he was comforted by the fact that he was inheriting a talent like Alston, who was only going to be heading into her sophomore year.“When I got here I was obviously excited to have her in the program,” McGuff said. “I knew she could be a big piece of (OSU) kind of rebuilding the program, and she has certainly been that.”In McGuff’s first year as coach, Alston had a remarkable sophomore campaign, receiving a first-team All-Big Ten selection by coaches and the media. She scored 19 points per game and also led the team with 112 total assists. Coming into her junior year, the Buckeyes were able to pick up a couple of premier recruits and transfers, including McDonald’s All-American and the nation’s leading high school scorer in 2014-15, Kelsey Mitchell. The influx of improving talent might have created a feeling of anxiety for a player who wanted to be the face of a program. For Alston, this was not so. “She was our main scorer and our go-to person our sophomore year, and then last year we had a bunch of young talent come in, and that never really bothered her,” Craft said. “It wasn’t just all on her anymore. There were other people to help her, but she took it in stride and she understood that was what was best for the team.”As a junior, Alston finished the year with 694 points, averaging 19.8 points per game and earning another All-Big Ten selection. She helped the Buckeyes become runner-ups in the Big Ten tournament before leading them to the second round of the NCAA tournament, where OSU would eventually fall to North Carolina by one basket. Now Alston, who is one of the two seniors on the team, has progressively become a vocal leader, as well as a leader by example, which she said is something she grew into over her four years in Columbus. “Being vocal is not something that I came in here with,” Alston said. “Now, I’m just trying to help give direction.” OSU is currently 21-4 and 13-1 in conference play, and it is in the midst of a nine-game winning streak. Even with all the success the Buckeyes are having and scoring her 2,000th point, there are still goals that Alston and her squad have with four games left in the regular season. And those start with cashing in on the promising postseason future OSU looks to have.“We are just taking it one game at a time,” Alston said. “The goal is to win every game and to hopefully get a Big Ten championship.”As Alston continues to be one of the Buckeyes’ go-to scorers this season, she will continue to rise on the all-time scoring list in OSU basketball history. With 2,032 points and counting to her name, only three players are above her. Of the trio, Jessica Davenport’s third-place position with 2,303 points is the only one in jeopardy. Even so, the humble Alston never truly had a passion to score 2,000 points in her collegiate career. Her prerogative was always staying focused on her mission of the team winning games. “(Scoring 2,000 points is) actually not something I think about … It just kind of comes with it,” Alston said. “This year has been very special in terms of our success as a team. It’s always great, and fun, when you’re winning.”The next chance for Alston and her team to keep winning is set for Thursday, as OSU is scheduled to take on Nebraska at 6 p.m. at the Schottenstein Center. read more

All Hall all the time for Ohio State against Buffalo

Shelby Lum / Photo editorRedshirt-senior running back Jordan Hall fights for extra yards during a game against Buffalo Aug. 31, at Ohio Stadium. OSU won, 40-20.Heading into Ohio State’s 2012 season, it was widely expected that then-senior running back Jordan Hall would be the featured back in the first year under new coach Urban Meyer.Hall was even named captain for the 2012 squad, but was forced to sit on the sidelines for all but three games because of two unrelated injuries.“It was tough, it wasn’t as tough because we won every game, so I feel like if we had lost a couple of games it would have been even tougher because I would have felt like I could’ve helped,” Hall said when asked about his time spent on the bench last season. “But we won every game so I was happy for my teammates.”After being granted a medical redshirt and since returning to full health, Hall was thrust into the spotlight for the 2013 season opener against Buffalo.Hall was named the starter for the game after the suspensions of top running backs senior Carlos Hyde and redshirt-junior Rod Smith.Hall quelled any doubts fans might have had by halftime, tallying 126 yards and two touchdowns on the ground in the first half. He finished with 159 yards on the day, a career high.Coach Urban Meyer said Hall stood out against Buffalo on offense for the Buckeyes.“Offensive champions were Jordan Hall, great to see him, 159 yards and graded out 81 percent. I guess those are career highs for him and I thought he played very well,” Meyer said.Both of his touchdowns came on big runs, one of which was a career-long at 49 yards. The other, a 37-yard sprint, came one play after Buffalo had cut the lead to 10 points and all but dashed any hope the Bulls had for a comeback.Junior quarterback Braxton Miller said Hall’s second touchdown helped to keep the momentum in Ohio State’s favor as the game was starting to slip away from the Buckeyes.“It slipped a little bit. But Dontre (Wilson) came back with a nice kickoff return, we got up a little bit and then Jordan (Hall) scored a nice little run,” Miller said.Hall credits his touchdown runs to the holes created for him by the offensive line.“I just was like, wow, I don’t know if they messed up or the O-line just did what they do and I just (saw) it and I took it,” Hall said.During the offseason, Meyer said he thought Hall would end up as the H-back and use his skill set to help the team there rather than in the back field.“Last spring, I had the intention of making Jordan Hall more of an H, but an H that can come in and motion in and that’s when he can cause issues for defenses,” Meyer said.Hall said he spent time preparing to be the H-back, but was also ready if he was needed as a traditional running back.“I was going to be the H and coach told me I had to learn both positions, so wherever they put me, I’m going to do what I have to do to help the team win,” Hall said.Hall finished the game with three catches for 14 yards to go along with his rushing total, but also caught a pass for a two-point conversion from senior quarterback Kenny Guiton.Although he wasn’t expecting to be on the field for the conversion, Hall thought it was a nice addition to the offense.“At the beginning of the season, I wasn’t even the person that caught the ball. Then in the first week, (running backs) coach (Stan) Drayton put me in there. I like it. The defense can’t take a play off,” Hall said.Hall was glad to see the team come out to a fast start, taking a 23-0 lead after the first quarter, but felt the team got complacent and slowed their pace after that.“Coach (offensive coordinator Tom Herman) challenged us to come out fast, get things going, and I think we did that,” Hall said. “In the second half, we slowed down a little bit, but we’ll be better next week.”Hyde, the expected starter heading into the season, is set to return from suspension Sept. 21 against Florida A&M. With Hall’s performance in the opener the player who will be the Buckeye’s long-term starter at running back remains up in the air.Hall said he isn’t worried about Hyde’s return, and said it’s about the team, not his individual stats.“Carlos (Hyde), he earned his right. He had a good season last year and I know that he was going to be the running back at the beginning of the season before he got in trouble or whatever and I was going to play a different position,” Hall said. “Coach Meyer knows that he has a bunch of people that can play running back or H position so I think it’s just going to be harder for a defense to prepare for that.”Drayton said when redshirt-junior Rod Smith returns from suspension Hall’s role might not change.“The beauty of Jordan (Hall), again, like I said, his strength is his intelligence on the football field and he has been cross-trained and he is continually being cross-trained at both of those positions,” Drayton said. “So with the addition of Rod Smith coming back, it doesn’t necessarily mean that Jordan Hall’s role gets lesser. No, it just may be distributed a little bit differently throughout the scheme.”OSU is set host to San Diego State Saturday at 3:30 p.m. at Ohio Stadium. read more