Day: May 30, 2022

Wellesley HS basketball players collect donations for Ukrainians

A group of teenagers in the Massachusetts town of Wellesley is gathering donations to support 90 Ukrainian basketball players who have been evacuated from war-town cities.Sean Tavis and several of his teammates on the Wellesley High School basketball team are collecting gently-used sneakers and other basketball equipment to send to those Ukrainians.Tavis was born and spent his childhood in Latvia, where his former basketball coach, Janis Butans, has taken in dozens of Ukrainian refugees to his basketball academy in the rural town of Valka.Basketball expenses are not covered under the refugee program, but for the traumatized Ukrainians between the ages of 12 and 17, having the opportunity to continue playing a sport they love is important during this tragic time.The Tavis family has also set up a GoFundMe page for those Ukrainian refugees, the money from which will go toward training and tournament expenses.

A group of

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The comeback: How St. Louis landed one of NASCAR’s biggest races | Local Business

MADISON — Curtis Francois was sitting in his office just steps from his racetrack last spring when he got a call from Daytona Beach. It was the big one.

World Wide Technology Raceway was in the running to host one of NASCAR’s marquee events. The France family, which founded and still owns the sport’s sanctioning body, was coming to town. Francois hung up and dialed Jason Hall, the leader of the St. Louis region’s business development organization.

“We’re going to get one shot with the whole family,” Francois told him. “How are we going to sell St. Louis?”

Today, the region is in final preparations for a weekend in victory lane. NASCAR is bringing its top-tier Cup Series to the Metro East. The Enjoy Illinois 300 is set for next Sunday.

It almost didn’t happen: Previous owners tried for years to score such an event. They eventually gave up, closed

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Iowa basketball assistant Courtney Eldridge meets with reporters

Iowa men’s basketball coach Fran McCaffery was in a new situation this off-season.

Two of his top assistant coaches, Billy Taylor (now head coach at Elon) and Kirk Speraw (retirement) left the program. For the first time, McCaffery has to replace two coaches in one off-season. 

Speraw’s replacement is to be determined. McCaffery hired Taylor’s replacement from within, promoting Courtney Eldridge. Eldridge has been on the Hawkeyes’ staff the past six seasons, serving as the program’s video coordinator from 2017-19 and director of recruiting and player development the last three years. Eldridge played for McCaffery at UNC-Greensboro.

“I have had a relationship with Courtney for a long time,” McCaffery said when Eldridge was hired on April 25. “He played for me at UNCG, has been on my staff, and has a great relationship with our players. He is a tireless worker who has tremendous character and experience that will benefit

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