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SPORTS
February 11, 2014 | By Kevin Baxter
COLUMBIA, Mo. - Craig Kuligowski heard the words, but at first they didn't register. In nearly three decades in college football, the University of Missouri defensive line coach had come to view summer team-building sessions as a typically uneventful training camp exercise. So he wasn't expecting different on a sweltering day last August when he gathered 15 players in a nondescript, windowless meeting room on the first floor of the Mizzou Athletic Training Complex. There, beneath seven black-and-gold placards professing an adherence to teamwork, camaraderie and character, one of the players tested whether those were core values or just empty words.
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SPORTS
February 11, 2014 | Wire Reports
The Cleveland Browns fired their coach after one season. Now they're sweeping out their front office. Owner Jimmy Haslam announced Tuesday that Chief Executive Joe Banner will step down in the next two months and General Manager Michael Lombardi is leaving the team. “Mike and Joe have left us in good position in terms of free agency and cap space as well as this year's draft, where we have 10 overall picks and three of the first 35,” Haslam said at a news conference. Haslam also said assistant GM Ray Farmer, who was pursued by Miami to be the Dolphins' GM this winter, has been promoted and will immediately take over the team's football operations and lead the Browns during free agency and the draft.
NATIONAL
February 10, 2014 | By Michael Muskal
The aftermath of Michael Sam's announcement that he is gay and will likely become the first openly homosexual player in the National Football League was greeted Monday with the kind of coverage usually reserved for the lead-up to the Super Bowl. Michelle Obama was the latest to join the chorus of praise for the All-American defensive lineman from Missouri who is expected to be chosen in a high round of the NFL draft. "You're an inspiration to all of us, @MikeSamFootball. We couldn't be prouder of your courage both on and off the field.
WORLD
February 8, 2014 | By Amro Hassan
CAIRO -- Leftist politician Hamdeen Sabahi has become the first candidate to announce his candidacy for president in Egypt's upcoming election. Sabahi, who ran unsuccessfully for the office in 2012, faces an uphill battle if the nation's de facto leader, Field Marshal Abdel Fattah Sisi, takes the expected step of running for the office. "My personal decision as a citizen is to run in the coming presidential elections. Hamdeen Sabahi's battle is the battle of the revolution," the leftist politician said Saturday during a news conference.
NATIONAL
February 6, 2014 | By Lisa Mascaro and Brian Bennett
WASHINGTON - Just a week after Republicans raised hopes for a bipartisan overhaul of the nation's immigration laws, House Speaker John A. Boehner all but abandoned the effort Thursday, saying it would be "difficult" to get any legislation approved this year by his GOP majority. Boehner's sudden shift, coming after his high-profile unveiling last week of Republican immigration principles that were partly embraced by the White House, left immigration advocates fuming and renewed speculation that the speaker's tenuous grip on a rebellious rank-and-file was slipping again.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 6, 2014 | By Nardine Saad
Supermodel Doutzen Kroes has another little angel on the way! The Victoria's Secret model and husband Sunnery James are expecting their second child and announced the news Thursday with a nude Instagram photo of the model cradling her protruding belly. Some people just have the genes for that sort of thing ... PHOTOS: 2013 Victoria's Secret Fashion Show  |  Backstage "This is not a #throwbackthursday this is now!" the 29-year-old wrote . "So happy to share with you that we are expecting.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 6, 2014 | By Mike Kupper, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Ralph Kiner, who spent 10 seasons hitting towering home runs in the major leagues, then spent most of the rest of his life joyfully calling baseball games on radio and TV, died Thursday at his home in Rancho Mirage, Calif. He was 91. The Baseball Hall of Fame announced his death, citing natural causes. An outfielder, Kiner played for three clubs - he was a shining star for the otherwise dreary Pittsburgh Pirates in the late 1940s and early '50s - but New York fans knew him as the funny guy who broadcast Mets games for more than 40 years, mixing up the players' names and goofing up the language.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 5, 2014 | By Christie D'Zurilla
This is one contest in which Clay Aiken really doesn't want to finish second: The singer is running for Congress, aiming to represent a district in North Carolina. Aiken, 35, who finished a close second to Ruben Studdard in the second season of "American Idol," announced his candidacy Wednesday via YouTube, Twitter and his own official website . He'll have to make it through a Democratic primary to take on the incumbent, Republican Rep. Renee Ellmers, who also has a primary challenger in what's reportedly a GOP-leaning district.
SPORTS
February 5, 2014 | By Gary Klein
USC Coach Steve Sarkisian wanted to finish a short recruiting season with a flourish. He did that Wednesday, landing all three of the top players that were targeted and uncommitted heading into national signing day. Long Beach Poly defensive back/wide receiver John “Juju” Smith announced at 1 p.m. that he would attend USC, giving the Trojans a clean sweep. Smith's announcement came two hours after Gardena Serra cornerback/receiver Adoree' Jackson announced he would sign with USC. Damien Mama, an offensive lineman at Bellflower St. John Bosco, announced Wednesday morning that he would become a Trojan.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 5, 2014 | By Gerrick D. Kennedy
From “American Idol” to Congress? Clay Aiken hopes so. The former “Idol” runner-up has formally announced his run for Congress as a Democrat in his native North Carolina. (And yes, we are just as confused as you are.)  Aiken officially launched his campaign for the seat held by Republican Rep. Renee Ellmers on Wednesday, and he's already issued a campaign video. In the nearly five-minute video -- it's on YouTube and is featured on his new campaign site -- the 35-year-old pop crooner stands in a modest living room, saying it's the home of a family friend who took him and his mother in years ago. PHOTOS: Celebrities by The Times "For most Americans, there are no golden tickets.
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