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Required Reading 9-9-09

Every weekday, the staffers at MFDC gather some of the best links around the intraweb in an effort to make you the most well informed fan in your office.  Enjoy!

Good news for Ole Miss fans: You team doesn’t suck as bad as they seemed to on Sunday.  Bad news: they may have swine flu.  ESPN

Shannon Singletary, Ole Miss’ senior associate athletic director for sports medicine, says more than a dozen Rebels football players are sick with flu symptoms, including fevers as high as 103 degrees. Tests to confirm the presence of swine flu take two weeks to complete, but officials aren’t taking any chances.

“From what we understand the standard protocol across the country is to treat all the symptoms as if they are swine flu,” Singletary said.

Other sports and the student body in general have been hit hard over the last three weeks. Ole Miss spokeswoman Barbara Lago says 368 students have reported flu-like symptoms to campus health services staff and a system that reports absences to faculty has reported twice as many students missing class over the last two weeks than is usual for a full month during the regular fall flu season.

For some reason, perennial Pro-Bowler Richard Seymour has no desire to play for perennial cellar-dweller Oakland, unless you trust a coach who punches his assistants in the face – Oakland Tribune

Defensive lineman Richard Seymour’s failure to make it to Alameda in time for a Monday morning walk-through and afternoon practice fueled speculation that he has no intention of playing for the Raiders.

The Raiders acquired Seymour in a trade Sunday with the New England Patriots that netted the Patriots a 2011 first-round draft pick. But all bets are off until the situation is resolved.

“We know that (Seymour) wants to be here,” Raiders coach Tom Cable said after Monday’s practice, “but we have really no control over those issues.”

Cable said he spoke with Seymour by phone and that Seymour expressed a desire to play for the Raiders this season.

Cable added that the hang-up is a need for Seymour and the Patriots to work out “issues.”

Oklahoma All-Americans are dropping like flies – The Oklahoma Daily

The No. 13 Sooners welcome more bad news to the team with the announcement that senior tight end Jermaine Gresham would miss the entire 2009 season.

The news comes 24 hours after head coach Bob Stoops announced the loss of Heisman winner junior quarterback Sam Bradford for two to four weeks.

“Jermaine’s arthroscopic surgery went well for him in the long run,” Stoops said. “[Doctors] had to repair and stitch together some of the cartilage and carve parts around it.”

Stoops said the surgery requires five months of rehabilitation, which means there would have been on hope for him to return for the end of OU’s Big 12 schedule.

“For his sake the rest of the knee looks good, and this is something that heals really well,” Stoops said. “It’s just unfortunate that he comes back and he’s not able to continue to participate. So we really feel for him.”

The next Percy Harvin starts career like Percy ended it, injured – The Orlando Sentinel

As expected, wide receiver Andre Debose will not have the chance to replace Percy Harvin this year.

The freshman from Sanford Seminole will undergo season-ending surgery on a damaged hamstring tendon, Coach Urban Meyersaid after Tuesday’s practice.

Doctors must re-attach Debose’s tendon muscle to the bone, Meyer said, requiring Debose to miss a “significant time period.” The coaching staff doesn’t have a timetable on Debose’s surgery date or rehabilitation time.

BYU is good at football again.  In other news, parachute pants are back in style, as is the word “bodacious”. – The Daily Universe

As if BYU’s win over Oklahoma wasn’t big enough, the Cougars’ subsequent jump in the rankings has put them at the same level as the country’s elite teams.

BYU leaped eleven spots from No. 20 to No. 9 in Tuesday’s updated AP poll. The Cougars are no strangers to the top 10, having reached as high as No. 8 last season.

The Cougars were also ranked No. 12 in the USA Today Coaches’ Poll.

Along with the top-10 ranking, both the Walter Camp Football Foundation and the Mountain West Conference named quarterback Max Hall as Offensive Player of the Week.

“We have a lot of talent on this team and the coaches put together a great game plan for Oklahoma,” Hall said in an interview with ESPN about the national award. “This award is a result of a great team effort.”

Just when you thought NBA officiating couldn’t get any worse – ESPN

The prospect of replacement referees calling NBA games for the first time since 1995 is looming larger by the day after the latest negotiating session between the current refs and league executives broke down Tuesday.

The NBA’s most recent contract with its 60-plus referees expired Sept. 1 and Tuesday’s bargaining session in New York was called to an abrupt halt by commissioner David Stern, according to one source with knowledge of the talks.

No further talks are scheduled between the sides with only 22 days before the league’s first scheduled exhibition game Oct. 1. The likelihood that replacement refs will be needed for that game — Denver at Utah — has “increased dramatically,” according to the source.

ESPN.com reported Aug. 25 that the league is seeking an across-the-board reduction of 10 percent to a referee budget that costs an estimated $32 million.

Daily Laugh – Ohio State QB Terrell Pyror uses a unique defense of childhood idol Mike Vick, whom he honored on Saturday by writing his name on his eye-black.

That’s right, you heard him. “Not everybody is a perfect person in the world. Everyone kills people, murder people, steals from you, steals from me, whatever.”

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