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EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley’s struggles reached new depths Sunday when he had a career-low one rushing yard on 13 carries in a 34-27 loss to the New York Jets. He also failed to effectively block Jets safety Jamal Adams on a pair of sack/fumbles in the contest.
Barkley’s previous low in a game he played from start to finish was 28 yards, which occurred last week against the Cowboys and Week 2 of his rookie season. His longest run against the Jets went for three yards. Barkley had four rushes that went for negative yards in the contest.
Barkley was “banged up” in Sunday’s game, according to coach Pat Shumur. He was seen by reporters entering the X-ray room following the loss.
“Jets played a hell of a game. They’re a hell of a defense,” Barkley said. “Going into the game they were only averaging [allowing] 3.1 yards per carry. They did an amazing job. I reached out to [defensive coordinator Greg] Williams. Shook his hand and said, ‘good job.’”
When asked about whether the injuries were affecting his play or about the X-ray, Barkley responded: “Next question.”
Adams rips ball away from Jones for 25-yard fumble-6Jamal Adams wrestles the ball away from Daniel Jones with authority and takes off the other way for a 25-yard touchdown.
It has been a struggle for Barkley ever since returning from a high ankle sprain suffered in Week 3. He’s averaging just 2.6 yards per carry in the four games since.
There was a moment early in the second quarter when Barkley grabbed at his left leg after an incomplete pass thrown in his direction. He was taken off the field for one play, then returned without a limp.
Barkley’s previous injury was to his right ankle. Regardless, the Pro Bowl running back isn’t passing the eye test at this point. There may be reasons beyond the struggles of the Giants’ offensive line, which finished the game with three backups on the field.
“[Barkley] got banged up a little bit [Sunday], so I don’t know,” Shurmur said. “I’m sure that contributes. We’ll look at it as we go. He got banged around pretty good.”
There were moments when Barkley was on the field that he was ineffective. It showed up on two costly plays with his blocking.
Jets safety Adams silences critics with banner day
Barkley was dominated by Adams on the sack/fumbles, with the second resulting in an Adams touchdown.
“Jamal Adams beat me. Simple as that. He’s a heck of a player. All-Pro,” Barkley said. “Didn’t really want to switch jerseys with him after the game. Jokingly told him that. One of my good friends. One of my boys. Hell of a player. Much respect to him. I got to be better there.”
Barkley and the Giants (2-8) are entering their bye week sputtering and not at 100%. This gives them time to heal.
Starting wide receiver Sterling Shepard, tight end Evan Engram, right tackle Mike Remmers and center Jon Halapio all missed Sunday’s game because of injury. Left tackle Nate Solder exited in the second quarter with a concussion.
“Only thing I got to focus on is just coming in and trying to be the player I can for my team,” Barkley said. “Just focus on the bye week. It’s a week where everyone can get a chance to get healthier, not only myself but the whole team. We get to reflect on our season so far. Just try to be a better team than we were in the first half.”
The Giants enter their bye week on a six-game skid. It has everyone searching for answers.
“I mean, like, I don’t know. Yes, frustration, disappointment, anger. Everything you said,” Barkley said. “No one wants to be 2-8. No one wants to have a losing record. I don’t know, yes. Everyone is upset. Everyone is frustrated.”
After a 21-point blowout loss at home to the Cleveland Cavaliers on Sunday, New York Knicks president Steve Mills and general manager Scott Perry addressed the media to express their displeasure with the team’s struggles.
“We’re not happy with where we are,” said Mills. “This is not where we expected to be at this point — 10 games in.”
Sunday’s loss dropped the Knicks to 2-8 on the season. It was their third loss of at least 20 points in the last four games and the second at Madison Square Garden in that span.
The Cavs opened the second half on an 18-6 run and led the Knicks by as many as 30 in the third quarter. After a fast-break layup by Collin Sexton with under seven minutes left in the quarter, fans booed the Knicks.
Perry said the team has lacked consistency in its effort.
“I think the lack of consistency — that for the most part we’ve seen it, but you see sporadic efforts, too,” Perry said. “And that’s what we talked about as we sat during this game, and one of the reasons we wanted to come out and address you guys. Because we got to be consistent in all areas of the game, starting with the effort.”
Despite the struggles, Mills said the front office still believes in coach David Fizdale.
“We have patience, and we believe in Coach,” Mills said. “And we believe in the group that we put together, but we also know that, as Scott and I both have said a number of times, we need to find a way to have a consistent level of effort and execution.”
“Got to own that our home consistency is not there,” Fizdale said after the game. “I take full responsibility for that.”
The Knicks didn’t necessarily have playoff expectations this season after whiffing on landing a big free agent in the offseason, but they were expected to be more competitive than last season’s league-worst 17-65 team. So far, that hasn’t been the case.
“We’re not here focused on the record,” Mills said. “We’re focused on improvement and delivering a consistent effort, because we believe that if this team plays with the kind of effort that they played against Dallas that we’ll win basketball games.”
Prior to facing Cleveland, the Knicks played the Mavericks on Friday, earning their second win of the season in Kristaps Porzingis’ first game against his former team. Offseason acquisitions Marcus Morris Sr. (29 points) and Julius Randle (21) led the team in scoring in the 106-102 win.
“[Mills and Perry are] right. We need to win,” Morris said after Sunday’s loss. “We got great players. We got great chemistry. We got great guys on this team. … If I was front office, I’d be upset too. Our coaches are doing a great job. We just got to be better. They’re not the ones giving up 20-point leads in the beginning of the first half. That’s us. It’s all on us, and we have to own it.”
Mills said team owner Jim Dolan still believes in the plan he and Perry have in place but wants to see better results on the court.
“He’s [as] passionate as we are about this,” Mills said. “So he would want us to have better results on the floor as well. And I think Jim is a fan and believes in what we’re doing, but he has the same kind of expectations that we have.”
The San Francisco Giants have hired former Cubs front-office executive Scott Harris as general manager, the team announced Sunday.
Harris spent seven years in the Cubs’ front office and was named their assistant GM in January of last year. He has long been seen as a future GM and was an integral part of the Cubs’ recent rise.
“We’re thrilled to be able to bring in an executive of Scott’s caliber to help lead our Baseball Operations group,” president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi said in a statement. “The combination of his breadth of experience, contributions toward building a championship-winning perennial contender in Chicago and his Bay Area roots made him an ideal fit for our General Manager position and I’m looking forward to executing our vision together.”
Reports: Giants narrow manager search to 3
Harris is the 10th GM in Giants history and the first hired during Zaidi’s tenure, which began last year. The Giants still need to find a manager to replace Bruce Bochy, who retired after the 2019 season.
A native of Redwood City, California, Harris attended Columbia Business School while working for Major League Baseball as the league’s coordinator of major league operations for two years prior to joining the Cubs in 2012.
Toronto Maple Leafs star Mitch Marner will be out a minimum of four weeks after sustaining an ankle injury Saturday against the Flyers.
Marner, 22, is the Leafs’ second-leading scorer with 18 points (four goals, 14 assists) in 18 games this season.
“I’m disappointed for Mitch, I’m disappointed for our hockey team,” coach Mike Babcock said after Sunday’s 5-4 loss to Chicago.
“In saying that, someone else is going to get an opportunity. As a coach, we’ve got to figure it out, get our lines — we had a different line for each period (Sunday) — we’ve got to get our lines right to maximize the group we have, get the right people in the right spots.”
Marner signed a six-year contract worth almost $11 million per season after registering 94 points (26 goals, 68 assists) in 2018-19.
The team said he will be reevaluated at the end of the four weeks.
Liverpool opened up an eight-point lead at the top of the Premier League with an emphatic and hugely impressive 3-1 win over defending champions Manchester City at Anfield on Sunday.
The victory leaves unbeaten Liverpool on 34 points from 12 games, eight ahead of Leicester City and Chelsea, and nine in front of Pep Guardiola’s fourth-placed City.
Liverpool grabbed a sixth-minute lead with a thundering drive from Brazilian Fabinho, who pounced on a clearance from Ilkay Gundogan and blasted past Claudio Bravo from distance.
Yet City felt the stunning effort should have been ruled out — and a penalty awarded to them — as prior to the break that led to the goal Liverpool defender Trent Alexander-Arnold appeared to handle the ball inside the box but the VAR review went against the visitors.
City pushed forward in response and Raheem Sterling missed a close-range header, but Liverpool struck again in the 13th minute when Andy Robertson crossed from the left and Mohamed Salah nodded the bouncing ball past Bravo to make it 2-0.
City’s third defeat of the season look assured when Liverpool made it 3-0 six minutes after the interval as Jordan Henderson worked space for a cross on the right flank and Sadio Mane stooped to head home at the back post.
Bernardo Silva pulled a goal back for City in the 78th minute, drilling home a low cross from Angelino and the visitors enjoyed some late pressure but Liverpool held firm.
“What happened today we showed why are champion, I am so proud of my team, more than ever,” City boss Guardiola said postmatch. “We can be proud of how we played against the strongest team in Europe.
When pushed about the controversy around the first goal, he added: “Ask to the referees, don’t ask me. Ask to Mike Riley and the guys in VAR. I would like to talk about our performance, it was so good.
“It was one of the best performances we have played. We played like back-to-back champions. We cannot deny how good Liverpool are but the way we played, the personality, it was good. It was quite similar to the Champions League game. It was an incredible situations in that game too but the performance today was so good.
“Always we try, never give up that is why we are back-to-back champions. Always fight until the end. “It is important to grow as a club and as a team. It was an honour for both team to show Premier League to spectators this type of game.”
LSU is an overwhelming No. 1 in The Associated Press college football poll after beating Alabama in a 1-2 matchup, and Minnesota moved into the top 10 for the first time in 57 years.
After two weeks of historically close voting at the top of the poll, LSU received 54 first-place votes in the AP Top 25 presented by Regions Bank. Ohio State was No. 2 with five first-place votes and Clemson was third with three first-place votes. Alabama fell two spots to No. 4.
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Georgia was fifth, followed by Oregon and Minnesota at No. 7. The Gophers won Saturday’s other matchup of unbeaten teams, defeating Penn State at home. The Nittany Lions slipped four spots to No. 9.
No. 24 Indiana is ranked for the first time since 1994, snapping the longest poll drought among Power Five conference schools.
It wasn’t a great week for Alabama, but the Crimson Tide did extend their record for consecutive weeks in the top five of the AP poll. Alabama has been among the five highest-ranked teams for 66 weeks, a streak that started on Nov. 8, 2015.
The second-longest streak of top-five appearances is Miami, which had 55 from Oct. 8, 2000 to Oct. 26, 2003.
Minnesota has its best ranking since it reached No. 5 in 1962 and finished 10th.
AP Top 25
1. LSU (54) 9-0
2. Ohio St. (5) 9-0
3. Clemson (3) 10-0
4. Alabama 8-1
5. Georgia 8-1
6. Oregon 8-1
7. Minnesota 9-0
8. Utah 8-1
9. Penn St. 8-1
10. Oklahoma 8-1
11. Florida 8-2
12. Baylor 9-0
13. Auburn 7-2
14. Michigan 7-2
15. Wisconsin 7-2
16. Notre Dame 7-2
17. Cincinnati 8-1
18. Memphis 8-1
19. Boise St. 8-1
20. SMU 9-1
21. Navy 7-1
22. Texas 6-3
23. Iowa 6-3
24. Indiana 7-2
25. Oklahoma St. 6-3
Indiana had a great off week with the help of another Power Five school that had not been ranked in years. Wake Forest slipped out of the ranking after a loss at Virginia Tech. The Demon Deacons earlier in the year earned a ranking for the first time since the 2008.
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The Hoosiers (7-2) already have their first seven-victory season in 12 years and will head to Penn State next week trying to win as a ranked team for the first time since late in the 1993 season. The previous time Indiana was ranked, it moved into the rankings on Sept. 18, 1994, after beating Kentucky to get to 3-0. Ranked No. 25, the Hoosiers visited No. 16 Wisconsin, lost 62-13, and have not been ranked since.
Now that Indiana has ended its drought, the Hoosiers’ in-state rivals have the longest run of being unranked among Power Five schools. Purdue hasn’t been ranked since 2007. The next-longest droughts are Kansas (since 2009), Illinois (2011) and Rutgers (2012).
• No. 22 Texas moved back into the rankings after beating Kansas State and knocking the Wildcats out of the Top 25.
• No. 25 Oklahoma State moved back into the Top 25 for the second time this season.
• San Diego State fell out after losing to Nevada.
For the sixth time this season, three of the top five teams are from the SEC.
Big Ten — 7 (Nos. 2, 7, 9, 14, 15, 23, 24).
SEC — 5 (Nos. 1, 4, 5, 11, 13).
American — 4 (Nos. 17, 18, 20, 21).
Big 12 — 4 (Nos. 10, 12, 22, 25).
Pac-12 — 2 (Nos. 6, 8).
ACC — 1 (No. 3).
Mountain West — 1 (No. 19).
Independent — 1 (No. 16).
RANKED vs. RANKED
No. 5 Georgia at No. 13 Auburn. Another top-10 opponent for the Tigers.
No. 7 Minnesota at No. 23 Iowa. The Gophers still have work to do in the Big Ten West.
No. 24 Indiana at No. 9 Penn State. The Nittany Lions look for a bounce back before their showdown with Ohio State.
No. 10 Oklahoma at No. 12 Baylor. Could be first of two meetings, with a Big 12 championship rematch.
No. 21 Navy at No. 16 Notre Dame. The Midshipmen have an opportunity to give the American Athletic Conference a statement victory.