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Missouri native, Illinois grad living in space

Thursday, 26 September 2013 08:00 Published in Local News

Missouri and Illinois have a mutual interest in the most recent crew of the International Space Station. The Russian Soyuz arrived yesterday at the Space Station with two Russian astronauts and American Mike Hopkins. The Missouri native is also a former captain of the Fighting Illini football team. Hopkins was born in Lebanon, Mo. and grew up in Richland. While attending the University of Illinois to earn a bachelor's degree in aerospace engineering he captained the U. of I. football team in 1991.  Hopkins, a Colonel in the Air Force, will remain at the space station until mid-March. Officials at the school say he is the sixth alumnus to become an astronaut. A schedule of the sightings of the ISS can be found at: spotthestation.nasa.gov .

Traffic stop yields drugs and guns

Thursday, 26 September 2013 07:29 Published in Local News

A traffic stop on I-64 in Illinois has led to the arrest of three men and the recovery of marijuana, an assault-style weapon, a handgun and $25,000. Illinois State Police say the men aroused suspicion when they were stopped on Tuesday because they appeared nervous while being questioned. That prompted a search of their vehicle. Authorities say the men, ranging in age from 19 to 27, were headed from Georgia to Colorado to buy marijuana when they were pulled over on Interstate 64 in Nashville, Illinois.  The driver is charged with possessing marijuana and aggravated unlawful use of a weapon. The passengers are facing a marijuana-possession charge.

 

Can 49ers find a way to handle Rams this season?

Wednesday, 25 September 2013 17:19 Published in Sports

On their way to the Super Bowl last season, the 49ers couldn't solve one team: the Rams. St. Louis beat San Francisco once and the teams played to a tie, rare blemishes on the 49ers' record.

Jim Harbaugh's team gets another shot at the Rams on Thursday night, and the 49ers (No. 12 in the AP Pro32) are 3-point favorites over No. 23 St. Louis.

Coming off successive losses in which their offense was awful, the 49ers are in turmoil. Linebacker Aldon Smith is taking a leave of absence to deal with personal problems. At least in a short week, they have no choice but to concentrate heavily on football.

"I think it's a distraction to whoever wants to think about it, to whoever wants to pay attention to it," cornerback Carlos Rogers said. "When I get out there on the field and play, I'm thinking about playing whatever team, I'm not thinking about Aldon and whatever situation went on with him."

Pretty good advice, especially facing Jeff Fisher's Rams, who also come off a poor outing. One of the NFL's top coaches for two decades, Fisher is likely to have St. Louis ready for the defending NFC West champs.

"We've been on the losing end of a lot of games, this organization has," Fisher said. "Now last year, we got our feet back on the map, but I don't think there's a rivalry yet. It's a division opponent. It's a big challenge for us on a short week, but I don't necessarily see it as a rivalry yet. Hopefully, it will become one."

This game could help do that.

49ERS 20-16

No. 21 Philadelphia (plus 10½) at No. 1 Denver

Eagles will score some points. Broncos will score many, many points.

BEST BET: BRONCOS, 40-24

No. 3 Chicago (plus 2½) at No. 15 Detroit

Was tempted to make this BEST BET, too.

UPSET SPECIAL: BEARS, 26-13

No. 8 Baltimore (minus 3½) at No. 24 Buffalo

Along with UPSET SPECIAL, another road team win.

RAVENS, 23-20

No. 9 Cincinnati (minus 4½) at No. 25 Cleveland

And another.

BENGALS, 20-13

No. 26 Washington (minus 3) at No. 30 Oakland

You get the message.

REDSKINS, 22-17

No. 2 Seattle (minus 3) at No. 11 Houston

A real road test for Seahawks. Win convincingly and they rule the NFC. Nope ...

TEXANS, 21-20

No. 7 Miami (plus 6) at No. 4 New Orleans, Monday night

A real road test for Dolphins. Win in any manner and playoff goals look real. Nope ...

SAINTS, 27-20

No. 10 Indianapolis (minus 8½) at No. 32 Jacksonville

Lay the points against Jags until they show something.

COLTS, 24-10

No. 5 New England (plus 1½) at No. 16 Atlanta

Falcons need to figure out their problems now. Tough chore, but doable.

FALCONS, 24-21

No. 28 Minnesota (plus 1) vs. No. 27 Pittsburgh

The first of two London games. What a dud the Brits are getting.

STEELERS, 17-15

No. 22 Arizona (plus 3) at No. 31 Tampa Bay

Turmoil in Tampa leaves Bucs vulnerable, even to injury-ravaged Cardinals.

CARDINALS, 23-20

No. 29 New York Giants (plus 4½) at No. 6 Kansas City

Giants yielded seven sacks to Panthers. Chiefs REALLY know how to get after QBs.

CHIEFS, 20-17

No. 18 New York Jets (plus 4) at No. 17 Tennessee

Two coaches on hot seats whose teams are producing.

JETS, 24-19

No. 13 Dallas (minus 1½) at No. 19 San Diego

Would Cowboys clinch NFC East with win? Not quite.

COWBOYS, 30-23

___

2013 RECORD:

Against spread: 8-7-1 (23-22-3). Straight up: 10-6 (33-15).

Best Bet: 2-1 against spread, 3-0 straight up.

Upset special: 1-2 against spread, 1-2 straight up.

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