NRL Melbourne Storm not stewing over Cameron Smith career call

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Melbourne say they aren’t troubled by the possibility Friday’s NRL preliminary final against Canberra may be the last match for their skipper Cameron Smith.

The 37-year-old is still to declare his plans beyond this season and teammate Dale Finucane says it hasn’t been a talking point for the Storm.

If Smith is set on retirement and Melbourne lose, the Suncorp Stadium showdown it will be his 429th and final game after 18 years with the club.

Finucane, who has been out since August with a calf injury and is racing the clock to play, says the team aren’t putting any pressure on their captain to show his hand.

Finucane was surprised by the public criticism of one of the game’s greats and said the team felt Smith had earnt the right to make a call whenever he saw fit.

“It’s not something that’s discussed at all,” Finucane said.

“It’s like any player in any given year, whether they are moving clubs or retiring – it’s a personal decision for the individual and their family and it’s not really our business.”

“With the legacy that Cameron has and the amount of time he’s been involved in the game, he’s earned the right to take his time and do what he likes.”

Finucane said that if the game did turn out to be Smith’s last hurrah, the team would ensure a fitting send-off even if it didn’t involve any grand on-field gestures.

“Regardless of what happens, those sort of things will be done in our own way when the season finishes,” he said.

“If that’s the way he goes, I’m sure the boys would be happy to have those sorts of celebrations off the field.”

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Alex Smith returned to action nearly 2 years after a gruesome injury

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LANDOVER, Md. (AP) — The ball slipped out of Jared Goff’s right hand trying to spike it after a touchdown. That was about the only time he wasn’t in control.

“It wasn’t great,” he said. “I have the excuse that it was wet.”

Goff threw for 309 yards and two touchdowns and ran for another, and the Los Angeles Rams improved to 4-1 by beating Washington 30-10 on Sunday in Alex Smith’s return almost two years since a gruesome injury put his career in jeopardy.

“It’s incredible what he has overcome,” Rams coach Sean McVay said. “You almost wish it were in better conditions. Weird to say when it’s also our defense making things difficult for him. I’m just so impressed with him.”

Smith played his first NFL game 693 days since breaking his right tibia and fibula, entering when new Washington starting quarterback Kyle Allen injured his left arm. Smith was 9 of 17 for 37 yards on the same field he was carted away from on Nov. 18, 2018 before undergoing 17 surgeries to repair the injury.

“Very surreal at first,” Smith said of completing his comeback. “To have it happen as fast as it did was probably almost a blessing. … It was kind of nice in that situation not having to think about it. You just go out and do it.”

Former Washington QB Joe Theismann, who broke his right leg in similar fashion 33 years to the day before Smith was injured, said it was spectacular to see his return, adding, “I’m so thrilled and excited for him.”

The Rams are thrilled with such a strong


Smith College receives $50M gift; largest individual donation in its history

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NORTHAMPTON — Smith College has received a $50 million endowment gift — the largest individual donation in the school’s 155-year history.

The college announced Tuesday that the gift — $40 million designated for student financial aid and $10 million to “re-envision” the school’s career development program — is from an alumna who wishes to remain anonymous. It was made through a private foundation.

“I could not be more grateful for this alumna’s generosity, vision and belief in the power of a Smith education,” Kathleen McCartney, Smith College president, said in a statement.

“Her investment in the college will allow us to make a giant stride in equalizing the Smith experience for students from low- and middle-income backgrounds.”

The announcement included a statement from the donor saying, “Smith had a meaningful impact on my life, both personally and professionally, and I feel an obligation to pay it back.”

One of Smith College’s goals, according to McCartney, is to admit qualified students without regard to family circumstances, referred to as “need-blind admissions.”

“It is my deepest wish,” McCartney said, “that this alumna’s generosity will inspire others to help the college reach this goal.”

Smith College, which enrolls more than 2,500 undergraduates from nearly every state and more than 70 other countries, said it awarded more than $80 million in federal, state and college aid to 69% percent of its students during the last academic year.

Established in 1871 and opening four years later, Smith College has educated notable authors, journalists, activists, politicians, philanthropists, actresses, filmmakers, academics, CEOs, two First Ladies and recipients of the Pulitzer Prize, Academy Award, Emmy Award, MacArthur Grant, Peabody Award, and Tony Award.

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Hutch Gonzales: ‘I will always credit my coaching career to Allie Smith’ | St. Tammany community news

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What began as a whirlwind, taking over a Mandeville program that had gone through two years of turmoil and change, has now turned into a model of steadiness.

That stems from the work put in by Coach Hutch Gonzales. He now feels comfortable with the reins of the Skippers and has them primed to contend for a District 6-5A championship, as they just missed last season and made an improbable run to the Class 5A quarterfinals.

So who is Hutch Gonzales? He’s a man who loves spending as much time with his family as he does on the football field, even if he doesn’t always have as much time as he’d like to do so.

In our Coaches Corner segments, we take a stroll around the parish and get an inside, personal look at our 12 football coaches in St. Tammany Parish.


Age: 37

Wife: Ashley

Children: Samantha (10), Max (8) and one on the way

High school: Covington, Class of 2001

Talk about your family. How much time do you get to spend with them, and what sort of things do y’all like to do?

The big break, and especially the 4 or 5 months before we were able to get back into football was depressing at times and stressful, but it was nice to be able to spend that much time with family and being home. My wife works for parish government, so they were working from home as well. We spent a lot of that time at home together and with the kids, and we did all kinds of fun things.

I got to coach my son in baseball and watch my daughter do gymnastics. Obviously, we were locked in the house for a long time, so we are having another baby (laughs), but it


University of Maryland Names Prabhudev Konana Dean of Robert H. Smith School of Business

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COLLEGE PARK, Md., Sept. 28, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — The University of Maryland has named Prabhudev Konana, Ph.D., Dean of the Robert H. Smith School of Business, effective January 2, 2021. In this role, he will lead Smith in its mission to create knowledge, promote an inclusive learning environment that fosters intellectual discovery, and equip current and future leaders to assess complex problems and deliver innovative solutions.

University of Maryland, College Park Logo. (PRNewsFoto/University of Maryland)
University of Maryland, College Park Logo. (PRNewsFoto/University of Maryland)

“I am thrilled to accept the role as Dean of the Robert H. Smith School of Business,” said Konana. “As business education is rapidly changing in the current social, political, technological, and market trends, I look forward to all that can be accomplished with the students, faculty and staff at the University of Maryland.”

Konana currently serves as the Associate Dean of Instructional Innovation, William H. Seay Centennial Professor of Information Management and Distinguished Teaching Professor at the University of Texas at Austin McCombs School of Business. As associate dean, he helped develop the focus and identity of the McCombs School of Business, emphasizing entrepreneurship and innovation, and successfully led the transition of the entire business school faculty to online synchronous teaching, among other notable accomplishments in teaching and research.

Prabhudev Konana is perfectly positioned to assume this role in the highly competitive landscape of business education,” said Senior Vice President and Provost Mary Ann Rankin. “I have no doubt that he will swiftly implement big ideas, while strengthening academic connections throughout Smith and across campus. Dr. Konana’s contributions will positively impact the Smith School’s fearless and innovative academic reputation.”

Prior to his current role, Konana previously served as Chair of the Department of Information, Risks, and Operations Management at the Texas McCombs School of Business. As Chair he founded