The leadership of the Movement for Progressive Change (MPC) party has suspended for time indefinite its deputy chairman for mobilization and recruitment for alleged corruption. The MPC is headed by businessman Simeon Freeman.The suspension of Augustine Kimber was announced yesterday during a press conference at the party’s headquarters in Congo Town, outside Monrovia.Kimber, who was present at the press conference, has been accused by the MPC leadership of allegedly signing for materials on behalf of the party, which he reportedly converted to his personal use.MPC national chairman, John Ballon, said the party took the action against Kimber, “because he has been in a constant habit of misusing funds belonging to the party.”Ballon said that it was also due to Kimber’s persistant refusal to formulate an action plan for the party in Montserrado County that led to his suspension.“Kimber is hereby suspended because he has also misused the MPC’s funds in the amount of US$260 intended to make the necessary arrangements at the Roberts International Airport for the arrival of the Party’s leader, Mr. Freeman on December 5, 2016,” Mr. Ballon said.He said Kimber even refused to be at the welcome ceremony and has yet to refund the money in question. Kimber was said to have recently signed for the party’s materials intended for the ongoing voter registration. They included T-shirts, 4,000 pieces of the party’s observer forms that he (Kimber) took to his house. However, said Mr. Ballon, in spite of Kimber’s suspension, he is still a member of the MPC.The accused, who was at the press conference, refused to speak to the press, but promised to react “at a later date.”Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
Tags:#automation#robots#technology In recent years, a lot of media coverage has been devoted to discussing how quickly robots will take our jobs away — and how many of us will be affected. With dire predictions about robots eating up 800 million jobs by 2030, even the most unassuming observers pin the robot job takeover as taking place within the next four decades.But that’s not the real story here: The real story is how much robots will automate and take on, freeing us up to do the things that require human input. While some jobs likely will disappear as robotic technology finds ways to streamline them and make them no-brainers, we’ll find new ways to allocate robot resources to manage the things we don’t want to handle.An example of how robotic automation can make our industries more productive and less taxing can be found in vending machines. While these sales platforms may seem simple on the surface, they offer a glimpse into how robots can help us construct the future to be less taxing, but more purposeful, for human beings.Eliminating Mindlessness in Favor of ThoughtfulnessNick Yates is the founder and CEO of Generation NEXT Franchise Brands, which builds the automatic machines that deliver frozen yogurt and ice cream in stores. With more than $130 million in franchise and licensing contracts across more than 230 locations, Yates has seen his company grow very quickly.Yates says his company’s experience is that most businesses are using robotics as a powerful tool to support their customer service strategies. “By having robots pack boxes quicker, or perhaps provide answers to simple questions for customers, a business owner can find more productive and efficient ways to use the actual human employee who has a better set of skills that should be taken advantage of,” he explains.It’s important to make a distinction between work that requires insights and work that requires speed: Streamlining is incredibly helpful for the latter but stifling for the former. “Things that enhance productivity, including robots, are what cause economies to grow and for us all to get wealthier on average,” Yates says, “but this is a world where the average may not mean what it used to because it’s a world in which there will be wider gaps between the skilled and unskilled, between those with and without jobs.”That means we need to carefully rethink how we can best make use of the resources we have: How can we eliminate work that can be automated? How can we position our companies to rely more heavily on human workers’ critical thinking skills than their manual labor?Automating Vending Through RobotsYates’ company believes it’s found the solution for the manual vending machine industry: automated robots that deliver frozen yogurt and ice cream. Its robots dispense and serve frozen treats to customers in locations that already capture high levels of foot traffic, but the experience is unique in that customers can order from a digital user interface. That interface provides a selection of up to six flavors and up to six different toppings, preparing the desserts fresh in fewer than 60 seconds.Yates says that the ice cream-dispensing robots are de facto entertainers as well, dancing and playing music while displaying animation on their screens. This enhances the customer experience — especially for its under-18 audience — and creates engagement, despite the absence of a human ice cream slinger.These unattended robots are disruptive agents in a heavily service-focused industry. “The industry has been dominated by retail franchises that require traditional brick-and-mortar infrastructures that, unfortunately, now struggle because the cost of labor has increased to a point where it doesn’t make much business sense for the owner/operator,” Yates says. “Vending ice cream that’s delivered fresh to order has never been done before. We saw an opportunity to disrupt and ran with it.”While many in the food and beverage industry may argue that the customer service experience is the entire marketing platform for restaurants and other food vendors, the growth of Yates’ model shows that humans aren’t put off by customer service presented by a robotic provider. And the model can enable scale that’s not currently cost-effective for most labor-intensive restaurants and food vendors. By repositioning human labor to focus on developing and testing products, food providers can gain flexibility in preparation and distribution, allowing them to even infiltrate difficult-to-crack outlets like stadiums.What This Means for the FutureWhile robotic technology was out of reach for many businesses, thanks to their prohibitive cost structures, that’s no longer the case. Yates points out that the technology is getting more affordable as more players enter the space. “Reliability, however, is still questionable,” he says. “As the technology evolves, the cost will drop until we get to a point where buying robots to cook, clean, serve ice cream, or do any task on a consumer level is affordable for everyone.”Yates acknowledges that incorporating robotic technology isn’t easy for any entrepreneur, but it’s worth the effort if the industry — and company — stands to benefit. “Every industry needs someone willing to be the disruptive force that moves the entire group forward,” he says. “A lot of people are wary of robots and not willing to trust them, but it’s important to remember that we control robotic technology and have a say over how it works for us.”That control, he admits, can sometimes seem elusive: “Robots can be sensitive and require the best software to operate them well,” he cautions. “Be sure to combine technologies to get the best result.”While society has long predicted that robots will take over jobs in a deflated, conciliatory tone, it might be time to look at this job loss as a celebration. As robots automate everything from security to vending, they enable humans to put their full effort into the things only they can do. Related Posts Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces Brad AndersonEditor In Chief at ReadWrite What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … Trends Driving the Loyalty Marketing Industry Follow the Puck Brad is the editor overseeing contributed content at ReadWrite.com. He previously worked as an editor at PayPal and Crunchbase. You can reach him at brad at readwrite.com.
Essential Reading! Get my 3rd book: Eat Their Lunch “The first ever playbook for B2B salespeople on how to win clients and customers who are already being serviced by your competition.” Buy Now For more than a decade now, many in sales have been neglecting what may the single most crucial activity necessary for producing sales results. That activity is prospecting, and it is what is required to open new relationships and create new opportunities. No deal is closed without first being opened, and I have written here that “opening is the new closing,” to make the point that it is now what is critical to success. If you want success, you need to build the prospecting habit.How did we get to a place where salespeople don’t spend their time prospecting? The reasons are many and varied, but two stand out above the many others, and they deserve much of the blame.How Prospecting Was LostFirst, sales managers have not held their salespeople accountable for prospecting. In many cases, sales managers know that poor sales managers focus only on activity, and many of them have worked for managers who wanted only more activity. Because they don’t want to be that manager, they don’t hold their salespeople accountable for prospecting. Others don’t believe they should have to talk about activity at all.Second, and something that made the lack of accountability and an even larger problem was the concept once called “social selling” by its proponents. The chattering class on LinkedIn sold the idea that inbound was greater than outbound, that the world had changed, and that only Neanderthals used the telephone. This anti-cold calling fever laid waste to a generation of salespeople, all who believed the lie that they could create more opportunities with less effort if they spend enough time on the social channels.Those of us who knew better pushed back against the seductive lies of con artists, picks and shovel dealers (those who would sell you the tools you need to succeed in the gold mine, and who are also the only ones getting rich while you spend your time in an empty mine), and charlatans. As we predicted, social lost its allure, its results being far less than promised. We are still working on bringing accountability back into fashion.How You Build the Prospecting HabitIf you want to create more—and better—opportunities, you need to prospect. Your willingness to be proactive and professionally persistent in the pursuit of your dream clients is the determining factor when it comes to your sales results.The following steps will help you develop the prospecting habit.Make Prospecting Primary: Selling is made up of two major outcomes: 1) Opportunity Creation, and 2) Opportunity Capture. If you are going to capture opportunities, you must first create them, as natural a law as the one requiring you plant in spring if you would reap a harvest in fall. Because Opportunity Creation is the critical first step in sales results, it has to be your primary focus. Prospecting has to dominate your time and your energy.Block Time: If you don’t make time to prospect, other tasks, projects, and distractions will consume your time. The best way to ensure you have time to prospect is to block time on your calendar and hold it sacred. The more time you spend prospecting, the more opportunities you will create, and the more opportunities you create, the more you will win (all things being equal). Blocking time to prospect on your calendar is a commitment you make to yourself—and your future self. You should treat the commitment to prospecting as sacred as a commitment you make to meet with a prospective client—as it is what allows you to schedule those meetings in the first place.Get Past the First 10 Calls: The first cold you make is always the hardest. The second call is easier to make, even if only slightly so. But once you have gotten into the rhythm, it gets easier. That usually happens after about ten calls, eight of which are going to be voice mail. The eleventh call is when you start to get into your groove, but you can’t get there if you don’t keep dialing. After number eleven, calling turns into nothing more than a game, and your resistance will subside.Use Prospecting Cadence: The phone is the single best and most effective medium for scheduling appointments, but it isn’t the only tool available to you. You can follow up with an email, and if you share something useful, you can begin to be known as a value creator. Just don’t ask for an appointment over email; instead, tell your dream client you will try them back. You can also connect on LinkedIn, as long as you don’t pitch the client. Instead, give them your number and tell them they can call you should they ever need anything (you are going to call them again later anyway. As you string these touches together, you are professionally persistent in your persist. A cadence keeps your activity high and focused, improving your results.Keep a Scorecard: Track your habit by keeping score. When I started in sales, I tracked a few metrics. I tracked how much time I spent on the telephone pursuing meetings. I tracked how many dials I made, even though I didn’t have anyone to report them to (my efficiency). I captured how many times I had a conversation where I asked for a meeting and how many meetings I booked (my effectiveness). By keeping score, you hold yourself accountable. If you want success, hold yourself accountable for your results so no one else will ever have to.Selling, in large part, is about prospecting, the creation of new opportunities. Those who believe and behave as if sales is what happens after you create an opportunity are mistaken. The sooner you develop the prospecting habit, the sooner you will produce better sales results.
WATCH: Streetboys show off slick dance moves in Vhong Navarro’s wedding Lervin Flores jumps over three people! Perfect 50! #NCAASeason93 pic.twitter.com/B1s93NQCeh— Randolph B. Leongson (@RLeongsonINQ) September 1, 2017FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout #KicksStalker: High schooler LaMelo Ball gets signature shoe Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. MOST READ The Kapampangan forward also relished winning the title on his second try after losing last year to champion Yankie Haruna.“Without Yankie, I really took the opportunity to be a champion,” he said.Justin Gutang pys a tribute to last year’s dunk champ Yankie Haruna, gets a 45. #NCAASeason93 pic.twitter.com/Krsnuhjm7a— Randolph B. Leongson (@RLeongsonINQ) September 1, 2017ADVERTISEMENT Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netLervin Flores jumped over Renato Ular, host Andrei Felix, and judge Empoy Marquez and hammered the tomahawk dunk to win the Slam Dunk contest in the 2017 NCAA All-Star Friday at Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan.The Arellano forward scored a perfect 50 in the Finals to outlast St. Benilde’s Justin Gutang and Ular.ADVERTISEMENT LATEST STORIES UPLB exempted from SEA Games class suspension Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa LOOK: Venues for 2019 SEA Games View comments Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC “I really prepared hard for it. I was thinking in the final round to jump over (Eugene) Toba, but he lost, so I just convinced myself to be firm. I was also thinking to jump over (Elie) Ongolo Ongolo,” kidded Flores, who was undoubtedly enjoying his time with his dance celebrations to pump the crowd. Gutang paid tribute to Haruna in his championship slam with a 360 flush while wearing Haruna’s jersey, which got him a 45.Ular, meanwhile, failed to make his ambitious off-the-glass dunk in the championship and settled for 30.Flores topped the first round after completing an off-the-bounce two handed reverse to nab a 45.Letran’s Renato Ular makes his dunk, gets a 45. #NCAASeason93 pic.twitter.com/dVjVAdXjY5— Randolph B. Leongson (@RLeongsonINQ) September 1, 2017Also joining the competitions were San Beda’s Toba, JRU’s Jed Sarmiento, Lyceum’s Yancy Remulla, EAC’s Rustan Bugarin, San Sebatsian’s Allyn Bulanadi, Perpetual’s Kervin Lucente, who all missed their dunk attempts in the first round.The competition was judged by Alab Pilipinas coach Jimmy Alapag, reigning ABL Local MVP Bobby Ray Parks, celebrities Marquez and Ria Atayde, and NCAA Press Corps president Cedelf P. Tupas of the Philippine Daily Inquirer. SEA Games in Calabarzon safe, secure – Solcom chief Catriona Gray spends Thanksgiving by preparing meals for people with illnesses Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes PLAY LIST 01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games Read Next For the complete collegiate sports coverage including scores, schedules and stories, visit Inquirer Varsity.
On these lists you’ll find all the old standbys but probably some surprises, too. Kyle Lowry’s performance last year put him the 97th percentile, well within the mark we’d expect to find for the best player on a championship-caliber team. The Toronto Raptors team around him just wasn’t up to that level.You’ll also notice that four members of the San Antonio Spurs appear on these lists, while just one member of the Miami Heat does: LeBron James. The Heat were something of an outlier last season as Dwyane Wade, the team’s second-best player, had an SPM that placed him in the 82nd percentile, more than a standard deviation less than the average second-best player on finals teams. In fact the average SPM percentile rank of the Heat’s three best players last season — James, Wade and Mario Chalmers — was just 82. On only six of the 40 finals teams in this sample did the three players have a lower average mark. By comparison, the average SPM percentile rank of the Spurs’ three best players last season was 92nd.Which brings us to the 2004 Pistons, the championship team often acknowledged as lacking a transcendent star. But this perception is a misconception. No players on the team were dominant individual scorers, sure, but the Pistons’ best players performed at levels of elite stardom. Their three best players that season — Ben Wallace, Rasheed Wallace and Chauncey Billups — had SPM marks that placed them in the 95th, 95th and 92nd percentiles, respectively. In fact, the average of the trio’s SPM percentiles that season ranks higher than that of all but five of the 40 teams in this sample. The 2004 Pistons may have been starless in terms of the subjective ways we define the term, but by objective measures of performance, they had as much star power as nearly any championship-caliber team of the last 20 years.This should bring hope to teams like the Warriors, Grizzlies, Raptors and Wizards. We may not see Andrew Bogut, Mike Conley, Marc Gasol, Kyle Lowry or John Wall as the kind of stars who can help lead a team to the finals. But each has been at or near that level of production in the past. If the teams around them can provide the necessary support, the fact that they aren’t dominating scorers or sneaker-selling heroes won’t stop them from winning championships. You need stars to win championships. It’s one of the oldest pieces of NBA conventional wisdom, and every year it’s validated as another star leads his team to the title. So far this year the Golden State Warriors, Memphis Grizzlies, Toronto Raptors and Washington Wizards may hold some of the top spots in each conference while seemingly lacking the celestial requirements for championship contention. But at some point they’ll be overtaken by the Cleveland Cavaliers, Chicago Bulls, Houston Rockets, San Antonio Spurs or Los Angeles Clippers.It’s an idea that gains more credence every time an NBA analyst trots it out. Bill Simmons asks, “Can you win an NBA Championship if Carmelo Anthony is your best player?” Jeff Caplan wonders if a team “lacking a legit superstar” like the Grizzlies or the Indiana Pacers can really win it all. NBA.com roundtables lead off with questions like, “Can a team win it all nowadays without an MVP-type superstar?” The starless 2004 Detroit Pistons are often acknowledged as the exception that proves the rule.What we do know for sure is that it takes an elite team performance to win a championship, and elite teams are usually (but not always) driven by elite players. The problem is that there is no objective definition of what makes somebody a suitable enough star to win championships. Dwyane Wade didn’t have the experience to lead his team to a title … until he did just that in the 2006 NBA Finals. After his playoff struggles in 2006 and 2007, Dirk Nowitzki clearly couldn’t help his team break through … until he did in the 2011 finals. Often we don’t recognize the players who meet our imagined championship threshold until the second before they cross it.But the data — the data holds some answers. We can use it to look at the rosters of teams that made the finals and better understand just how good their best players were. Using Statistical Plus-Minus — an estimated measure of a player’s value in points per 100 possessions relative to the league average — I looked at where each finals player ranked, relative to the league, in the season his team made the finals.The table at left covers the past 20 seasons and shows the average, minimum and maximum SPM percentile for the first, second and third-best players on finals teams.That bottom row is not the fabled 2004 Pistons. It’s the 1999 New York Knicks, who made their way to the finals as an eight seed during the lockout-shortened season. Only two other finals teams over the past 20 seasons had their best player rank below the 90th percentile in SPM — the 2010 Boston Celtics and the 2000 Indiana Pacers.So the best teams are indeed almost always driven by the best players. But who are those players? Let’s use last season as an example. The table below shows SPM percentile ranks from 2013-14. The table is color-coded, separating the players into two groups: those who are within one standard deviation of the average for the best players on NBA Finals teams for the 1994-95 through 2013-14 seasons, and those who just missed the cut.1Percentile ranks are for players who played at least 115 minutes, a pool of about 200 players per season.
Culpepper2000MINSmith • Kleinsasser • Moss • Carter • Davis226 Cassel2008NEFaulk • Morris • Welker • Moss • Gaffney220 Stabler1973OAKHubbard • Smith • Siani • Biletnikoff • Moore209 New QBYrTmSkill PlayersWtd. A.V. Hogeboom1984DALDorsett • Springs • Hill • Cosbie • Renfro240 Sanchez2009NYJJones • Greene • Cotchery • Keller • Edwards188 *Weighted Approximate Value equals a player’s AV from the previous season multiplied by three, plus his AV from two seasons ago multiplied by two, plus his AV from three seasons ago. A team’s total above is the sum of the weighted AV numbers for all of its primary non-QB skill players.Source: Pro-Football-Reference.com With seconds left in the first half of the Kansas City Chiefs’ preseason game against the Atlanta Falcons last Friday, new starting QB Patrick Mahomes showed once again why KC felt comfortable dropping longtime starter Alex Smith in favor of the talented 22-year-old they took 10th overall in 2017. White1980DALDorsett • Newhouse • Hill • Pearson • DuPree264 Rivers2006SDTomlinson • Turner • Gates • Parker • McCardell291 Mahomes2018KCHunt • Ware • Kelce • Watkins • Hill221 King2000TAMDunn • Alstott • Johnson • Green • Moore234 Rypien1989WASByner • Riggs • Monk • Sanders • Clark235 Woodley1980MIANathan • Williams • Moore • Harris • Cefalo208 Phipps1972CLEKelly • Scott • Pitts • Morin • Hooker226 Manning2005NYGBarber • Finn • Burress • Shockey • Toomer210 Roethlisberger2004PITStaley • Bettis • Ward • Burress • Randle El235 Fitzpatrick2008CINBenson • Perry • H’mandzadeh • Johnson • Kelly202 Staubach1971DALGarrison • Thomas • Hayes • Alworth • Ditka211 Just how impressive was that bomb from Mahomes to Tyreek Hill? As Yahoo’s Michael David Smith noted, Mahomes’s pass traveled further through the air — 68.6 yards, according to the NFL’s NextGen Stats — than any touchdown pass did during the entire 2017 NFL season.1That’s impressive even though the 2017 stats include very little of Aaron Rodgers, king of the deep TD strike. So there’s no questioning Mahomes’s arm. And perhaps more importantly, he’ll be surrounded by plenty of supporting talent that will help him ease into his new role — maybe more of this talent than any other quarterback this decade. But does this ideal situation mean Mahomes is destined to make KC fans forget about Smith — and cure the Chiefs’ chronic postseason problems?Certainly, Mahomes will demonstrate a very different style of play than Smith did. During Smith’s seasons at the helm in Kansas City (2013-17), only Tom Brady had a lower interception percentage,2Among the 39 NFL passers with at least 800 attempts over that span. and nobody topped Smith on the percentage of passes he threw that ended up at or behind the line of scrimmage. Although Smith did begin to stretch the field more as a deep passer over his time in KC, he was mostly defined as an extremely accurate short-range passer who kept the Chiefs’ offense on schedule and didn’t make mistakes. Mahomes, by contrast, carries the “gunslinger” label for a reason: In the his one full start last season, 40 percent of his passes traveled at least 10 yards downfield, which would have ranked fourth in the league if he’d played enough to qualify. Mahomes also throws plenty of interceptions: In addition to the one he tossed during his lone NFL start (thereby increasing KC’s total picks thrown by quarterbacks by 20 percent), he also threw 25 in his final two seasons at Texas Tech,3Where, it should be mentioned, he also averaged a ridiculous 4,853 passing yards and 39 touchdowns over those two seasons. and struggled with turnovers during training camp as well.Fortunately, Mahomes will have an incredible arsenal of weapons to choose from when he’s running Andy Reid’s offense this year. At running back, KC boasts a pair of prolific rushers from the past few seasons in Kareem Hunt — who ran for 1,327 yards as a rookie in 2017 — and Spencer Ware, who missed all of 2017 with injury but notched 921 yards on the ground in 2016. Mahomes will also be throwing to wideouts Hill (1,183 receiving yards in 2017) and newcomer Sammy Watkins, who battled injuries in recent years but had 1,047 yards through the air in 2015. Finally, Mahomes can also go to Pro Bowl tight end Travis Kelce, who has racked up at least 1,000 receiving yards in each of the past two seasons — and is widely considered one of the best two TEs in the league, along with Rob Gronkowski.In other words, there’s a reason ESPN’s Bill Barnwell ranked Kansas City’s non-QB skill players as the best offensive arsenal in the league heading into the season. And in fact, if we zoom out beyond 2018 and look at NFL history, few first-time starters have ever been surrounded by a better group of skill-position talent than Mahomes will have at his disposal this season.To measure this, I went back to the 1970 NFL-AFL merger and tracked each team’s top two running backs and top three receivers (whether wide receivers or tight ends) for each season using Pro-Football-Reference’s Approximate Value metric, which assigns each player a numerical value roughly corresponding to his statistical productivity that year.4It’s not quite an apples-to-apples comparison with this season’s Chiefs, since I used end-of-season numbers for past seasons, and we obviously don’t yet know for sure who the Chiefs’ leading skill-position players will be this season. But using the players who are atop the depth chart heading into the season gives us a reasonable best guess. For those core groups of primary offensive skill players, I added up a weighted sum of their AV over the previous three seasons,5Where — somewhat arbitrarily — AV from the season before gets a multiplier of three, AV the season before that gets a multiplier of two and AV from three years ago gets a multiplier of one. to get a sense for how productive the group had been in the handful of seasons leading up to the one in question. Finally, I filtered for teams whose quarterback was in his first season as an NFL primary QB,6Meaning he led the team in attempts and started at least 10 games that season. to look for situations comparable to the one Mahomes currently finds himself in.After tallying up all the skill-position AV, here are the top supporting casts a new starter has gotten to play with since the merger: Gannon1990MINWalker • Fenney • Carter • Jones • Jordan220 Batch1998DETSanders • Vardell • Morton • Moore • Crowell258 Leinart2006ARIJames • Arrington • Boldin • Fitzgerald • Johnson235 Ponder2011MINPeterson • Gerhart • Harvin • Shiancoe • Jenkins204 George1990INDBentley • Dickerson • Hester • Brooks • Morgan203 Hipple1981DETSims • Bussey • Scott • Thompson • Hill185 Campbell2007WASPortis • Betts • Cooley • Moss • Randle El231 Leftwich2003JAXTaylor • Edwards • Smith • Edwards • Brady204 Evans1980CHIPayton • Harper • Scott • Watts • Baschnagel197 The Chiefs have set Mahomes up for successAmong quarterbacks in their first season as a primary QB, those whose primary supporting cast (2 RBs and 3 WRs or TEs) produced the most weighted Approximate Value* in the previous three seasons, 1970-2018 Although Kansas City’s talented group isn’t quite the most gifted core that a young QB has ever had to work with, it is close — ranking 12th-best since 1970 and the best this decade. In terms of what it might mean for the Chiefs, the rest of the teams on this list ended up posting an average of 8.9 wins per 16 games — just a tick below the average of 9.0 wins posted under their old QB — with the new QB generating exactly the same value (10.5 AV) as his predecessor had done in the role the year before. So if history is any indicator, Chiefs fans may not feel much of a drop-off from Smith to Mahomes, despite the latter’s inexperience.The only real concern around KC’s offense (which scored the sixth-most points of any team last year) might be the state of the team’s offensive line, which ranked among the middle of the pack in pass protection last year and has been up-and-down during the preseason thus far. But even there, Mahomes is in comparatively good hands. If we run the same exercise as above, but for Kansas City’s O-line instead of its skill players, Mahomes’s blocking support ranks 15th among first-time primary QBs since 1970. It’s not exactly the road-grading machine that Dak Prescott had in front of him when he broke in as Cowboys starter in 2016, but the KC line isn’t without talent — including 2017 second-team All-Pro Mitchell Schwartz at right tackle and former No. 1 overall pick Eric Fisher on the left side.All told, you’d have to go back to Tampa Bay Bucs QB Shaun King in 2000 to find a first-time primary signal-caller who got more support from both his skill-position teammates and his offensive line than Mahomes figures to get this season. And while King was little more than a stopgap starter for Tampa, Mahomes is lined up to be the Chiefs’ answer under center for the long haul. With ample talent around Mahomes to help smooth away any rough patches, don’t be surprised if his career as KC’s quarterback gets off to a fast start. And it had better — because if it doesn’t, neither Reid nor his young starter will have many places to lay the blame.
Suso is happy at Milan after the “mess of the Chinese takeover” has been resolved and the new executives are sound in football matters.AC Milan was under Silvio Berlusconi’s control for over three decades, but sold to Yonghong Li in April 2017 with the aid of massive loans from US hedge fund Elliott Management.However, Yonghong Li failed attempts to keep up repayments, led to Elliott reclaiming the club.“Everything has calmed down after the mess of the Chinese takeover,” Suso disclosed this to Football Italia in a recent interview.“Now everything has changed with the Americans, they have brought back legends like Leonardo and Paolo Maldini, people who know about football and know about Milan.”The latter has been a big help with the players since his return to the club where he spent his entire career.Serie A Betting: Match-day 3 Stuart Heath – September 14, 2019 Considering there is a number of perfect starts so early in the Serie A season, as well as a few surprisingly not-so perfect ones….“He is very observant. Maldini speaks little but imposes himself and he is very close to the team.”The former Liverpool winger has been impressive with two goals and six assists in seven games so far this term.“I enjoy playing football, otherwise I’d do something else. Italian football is very tactical and demanding for offensive players, because every week you face well-organised defences.“I’m very calm. I’m waiting for my child to be born in the next four weeks in a city that I like and that has everything.”The 24-year-old is set to be one of the main protagonists in next weekend’s derby showdown against Inter.“I will dedicate my next goal to Alessio. That is the name we have already decided on.”
Schalke 04 manager Domenico Tedesco has revealed he intends to win the team’s final group stage game of the UEFA Champions League despite already securing qualification to the second round.The Royal Blues face Lokomotiv Moscow tomorrow night, and Tedesco has stressed the importance of winning the game.“The game is important because we want to underline the fact that we deserve to be in the last 16,” said Domenico Tedesco, according to the club’s official website.“In the Champions League, we’ve played well four times and very badly once.”“On Tuesday, it’ll be about representing the club and the Bundesliga in the best way possible once again.”The Schalke manager also suggested that there could be changes from the 2-1 loss to Borussia Dortmund on Saturday.Tedesco: Schalke fell apart after Aguero’s penalty Andrew Smyth – March 13, 2019 Schalke 04 manager Domenico Tedesco believes Sergio Aguero’s penalty literally caused his side to fall apart following their 7-0 Champions League defeat.Guido Burgstaller, who was taken off after 36 minutes against Dortmund, won’t be available for Tuesday’s UCL game.Steven Skrzybski is also expected to miss out, and it’s still too early for Cedric Teuchert to think about playing the entire game.However, injuries can also provide the opportunity for other players in the squad to impress.“Ahmed Kutucu will definitely be in the squad. Ahmed is someone who always wants the ball and get forward. He can play up top, but he also plays quite well in midfield,” said Tedesco.The youngster has been causing a stir in the club’s U19 team recently.“He’s got great character and he’s earned the chance to get a few minutes under his belt,” added Tedesco.
Tags 2020 Hyundai Palisade review: Posh enough to make Genesis jealous Car Industry 2019 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Bison: A tougher off-roader 2019 GMC Sierra Denali review: So close to greatness GMC CanyonIf you’re looking for a slightly fancier version of the Colorado that’s more focused on luxe than dirt, check out the GMC Canyon. The top Denali trim gets standard heated and ventilated front seats as well as a heated steering wheel. Maximum payload capability is 1,665 pounds while max towing is a fairly healthy 7,600 pounds.The Canyon is available with the same 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine, 3.6-liter V6 or 2.8-liter diesel as the Chevrolet Colorado. It’s also built in Wentzville, Missouri. Comment Tags 2019 Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport loves to hustle 26 Photos 81 Photos Honda RidgelineAgain keeping the status quo, the Honda Ridgeline maintains third place on the American Made Index. This crossover-that-looks-like-a-truck provides a better ride than a traditional pickup and gets an awesome lockable trunk right in the floor of the bed. And it doesn’t do the truck stuff too badly, either, as it’s able to carry 1,860 pounds of payload and tow 3,500 pounds.The Ridgeline is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 good for 280 horsepower and 262 pound-feet of torque. That is channeled through a six-speed automatic transmission with available all-wheel drive. It’s built in Lincoln, Alabama. Honda OdysseyThe feature-rich Honda Odyssey minivan also retains its number-two slot from last year’s list. While the 2019 model doesn’t see any changes from last, it’s still a darn good choice for families on the go with reconfigurable seats, Wi-Fi and an excellent rear-seat entertainment system. The Cabin Watch video system lets parents keep an eye on their little darlings without turning around in their seats, while Cabin Talk amplifies their voice so no yelling is required.The Odyssey is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 rated for 280 horsepower and 262 pound-feet of torque. Most trims get a nine-speed automatic but the top Touring and Elite trims now use a 10-speed automatic with stop-start technology. The Honda Odyssey is made in Lincoln, Alabama. 2019 Honda Ridgeline: The commuter’s pickup truck 10 Photos 2019 Jeep Cherokee can handle the rough stuff 2019 Honda Odyssey offers plenty of room and features for families 2019 Honda Passport: A well-rounded midsize offering Renault,Enlarge ImageIt’s all in a day’s work for the Jeep Cherokee, the most American-made car in 2019. Jeep With high trade tensions looming and increasing talk of tariffs, more and more consumers are looking to buy American. Cars.com has released its annual American Made Index, showcasing companies that use the most American-sourced parts and labor in their vehicles. The results may surprise you.Cars.com analyzed more than 100 US-built vehicles for five key data points: manufacturing location, parts sourcing, US employment, engine sourcing and transmission sourcing. You might think something like the Ford F-150 would top the list, but it drops from its No. 5 spot for 2018 and out of the top 10 completely. Even the first-place holder, the Jeep Cherokee, is a pretty global product. It’s a Jeep, sure, but that brand is part of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, an Italian-owned business.Cars.com surveyed 1,000 people and found that half are concerned about automotive import tariffs, with 41% saying they are unsure if tariffs would make them more likely to buy American. Either way, we’re big fans of all the vehicles on this list. These days, buying American doesn’t necessarily mean sticking with a US-based automaker. 52 Photos General Motors Chevrolet Honda Jeep Acura 2019 Chevy Colorado ZR2 Bison: An off-road animal Post a comment Acura RDXThe third-generation Acura RDX squeaks into the top ten list with larger proportions, plenty of interior space and better handling than its predecessor. Forward collision warning with collision mitigation braking, adaptive cruise control that works even in low-speed traffic, lane-keeping steering assist and road departure mitigation are all standard across the board. Like its MDX counterpart, the RDX is available with the A-Spec styling package.The RDX sports a 2.0-liter, turbocharged, four-cylinder engine. Output is stated at 273 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque, and it’s mated to a 10-speed automatic transmission. The new RDX is built in East Liberty, Ohio. Honda PassportThe Honda Passport is a new (well, reborn) entry to both the Honda lineup and the American Made Index. This midsize crossover comes to the fray with great driving dynamics and plenty of tech like the standard Honda Sensing suite of active safety features. An available 8-inch touchscreen gets Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as well as a Wi-Fi hotspot.Under the hood is the stalwart 3.5-liter V6 producing 280 horsepower and 262 pound-feet of torque. However unlike the Ridgeline, the Passport sends that power through a nine-speed automatic transmission. Having said that, just like the Ridgeline, this is the only powertrain available. The Honda Passport is built in Lincoln, Alabama. Honda PilotDropping down to seventh place for 2019 is the Honda Pilot. Like its two-row Passport sibling, the three-row Pilot offers parent-focused technology like Cabin Talk as well as myriad standard driver-assistance features through the Honda Sensing tech suite. Honda’s largest crossover offers up nearly 84 cubic feet of cargo space. Honda’s 3.5-liter V6 engine shows up again, making a serviceable 280 horsepower and 262 pound-feet of torque. Touring and Elite trims get a nine-speed automatic transmission while lower trims have to make do with a six-speed auto. The Honda Pilot is made in Lincoln, Alabama. 69 Photos More From Roadshow 2019 Acura RDX A-Spec: Sharp handling, sharper looks 2019 Honda Ridgeline review: Light duty, heavy punch 18 Photos 7 Photos Share your voice 71 Photos Chevrolet CorvetteMoving up from the 10th-place slot last year is the 2019 Chevrolet Corvette. While we’ve all been ogling the new mid-engine Corvette, it’s easy to forget what a performance bargain the current-generation ‘Vette is. From the base trim to the Grand Sport to the bonkers ZR1, the Corvette is an American icon.My preference is for the Grand Sport, which strikes a perfect balance between everyday drivability and canyon-carving performance. The 6.2-liter V8 puts out 460 horsepower and 465 pound-feet of torque. You can get it with a seven-speed manual or eight-speed automatic transmission, but the kicker is the borrowed chassis and aero parts from the beefier Z06. Like I said, perfect balance. The Corvette is made in Bowling Green, Kentucky. 68 Photos 2019 Honda Pilot Elite: A smoother, tech-rich crossover SUV Chevrolet ColoradoMaking its debut in the top 10 is the Chevrolet Colorado. Shown here in the tough ZR2 Bison off-road spec, the Chevy Colorado is an excellent truck and one of the two midsize pickups you can get with a diesel engine. Adding to the ZR2’s two-inch lift and front and rear locking differentials, the Bison gets beefier skid plates (trust me, that’s a good thing), steel bumpers and integrated recovery points. Heck, you can even get a snorkel.Base models get a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine with a six-speed manual transmission, but a more popular choice is the 3.6-liter V6 gas engine with 308 horsepower and 275 pound-feet of torque, mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission. Meanwhile, the 2.8-liter diesel pumps out 186 horsepower and a delicious 369 pound-feet of twist and is mated to a six-speed automatic. The Chevy Colorado is built in Wentzville, Missouri. 1 Renault e-Plein Air is ready to hit the beach in silence 2019 Acura MDX adds new features and an A-Spec model 49 Photos 2019 GMC Canyon: A fancier Colorado 2020 Kia Telluride review: Kia’s new SUV has big style and bigger value More From Roadshow 12 Photos Acura MDXMoving up one slot to sixth place on the American Made Index is the non-hybrid variant of the Acura MDX. With its SH-AWD system, the MDX is one of the better handling midsize luxury crossovers, and for 2019 the company gives us the A-Spec treatment with a new front fascia and side skirts, 20-inch wheels, wider exhaust tips, unique gauges, a new steering wheel, carbon fiber trim and various Alcantara interior touches.However, both the standard and A-Spec models get a 3.5-liter V6 engine, rated for 290 horsepower and 267 pound-feet of torque going through a nine-speed automatic transmission. The Acura MDX is made in East Liberty, Ohio. 0 2020 BMW M340i review: A dash of M makes everything better Share your voice Jeep CherokeeKeeping its top-of-the-list placement, the Jeep Cherokee is 2019’s most American-made car. Refreshed for 2019, the compact crossover now features more tech, better cargo space and a slightly tweaked look. It’s available in no fewer the nine trims, including the off-road specific Trailhawk and a fancy-pants Trailhawk Elite.For 2019, the Cherokee gets a new 2.0-liter, turbocharged, four-cylinder engine with 270 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque, though naturally aspirated I4 and V6 choices are also available. Regardless of engine, a nine-speed automatic transmission gets the power to the pavement — or dirt as the case may be. The Cherokee is made in Belvidere, Illinois. Concept Cars Electric Cars Classic Cars Enlarge ImageIt’s just so cute! Renault It’s always nice to see an automaker giving an old car a breath of 21st-century air. For the 10th anniversary of 4L International, a festival dedicated to Renault’s first front-wheel-drive family car, the French OEM borrowed from its current stable to create a very interesting one-off.Renault this week unveiled the e-Plein Air, an electric take on the automaker’s doorless, open-top runabout. The e-Plein Air is the creation of Renault Classic, Renault Design and Melun Rétro Passion, which sells parts and accessories for older vehicles. The result is something that looks just as beach-ready as the day it debuted.The automaker didn’t give out too many details, but it did say that the e-Plein Air borrows its EV underpinnings from the Renault Twizy two-seater. Its 6.1-kWh battery only offers about 62 miles of range in the Twizy. Since we’re unsure how close the e-Plein Air comes to the Twizy’s 992-pound curb weight, it’s unclear if this concept will get better or worse mileage than the quadricycle.Nevertheless, it’s a sharp little thing. The exterior isn’t exactly the same as the usual Plein Air variant of 4L; there’s some new livery along the lower body panels, and there’s a much more modern grille up front. The interior gets a new set of seats, a cute little picnic basket in the back and a digital display that lets the driver monitor not only speed, but battery capacity, too.While I can’t imagine that Renault would actually craft a small-batch run of these diminutive beach-combing EVs, I suppose there’s nothing stopping a Plein Air owner from going out, buying a Twizy and hacking together their own custom electric creation.
BNP chief hosts an iftar programme at a city hotel on Tuesday for the family members of those who were killed or made to disappear in the past two AL regimes. Photo: BNPBangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) chairperson Khaleda Zia on Tuesday alleged that ruling Bangladesh Awami League has long been engaged in making BNP leaders and activists disappear with a ‘plot to perpetuate’ its power, reports UNB.Speaking at an iftar programme at a city hotel, she also hoped that the missing BNP men can be traced once the Awami League-led government quits power.”They [AL government] are of the impression that if the proactive BNP leaders and activists can be made to disappear, the party will get weakened paving the path for Awami League to cling to power. That’s why they’ve been indulging in such activities since they’ve come to power,” said Khaleda, also former prime minister.She said though Awami League had indulged in repressive acts in the past, it is unimaginable and unspeakable how they persecuted people under their current rule.The BNP chief hosted the iftar programme for the family members of those who were killed or made to disappear during the party’s movement during the past two AL regimes.Voicing her deep sympathy to the victim’s family members, Khaleda said, “We still hope our missing leaders and activists will came back to us someday. We hoped we’ll be able to find them out after the fall of the current oppressive regime.”She also presented the victim’s family members with Eid gift after the iftar.