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  • 24 Jul
    A recently changed Big Ten tiebreaker could come into play in the East Division race, though it likely would affect only the timeline of naming a champion.?There was some brief consternation last season, when it appeared possible that Ohio State, Michigan State?and Michigan?could finish in a three-way tie for first place in the East with one loss and no head-to-head tiebreakers available.In that scenario, the division champion would have been decided by the fifth tiebreaker -- the highest-rated team in the College Football Playoff rankings. Theres just one problem for this season: The final regular-season CFP rankings dont come out until Nov. 29, meaning the teams wouldnt know who is heading to Indianapolis until four days before the conference title game.The Big Ten recognized this problem, and according to a spokesman, the leagues administrators council changed the procedures during its regularly scheduled meeting last month.?Now, the fifth tiebreaker will be best overall winning percentage.The CFP ranking was removed as one of the tiebreakers due to the timing of when the rankings are released and the potential competitive and logistical impact the timing could have on the Big Ten championship game, league spokesman Adam Augustine told ESPN in an email Sunday night.The ACC went through a similar rule change, eliminating the playoff rankings as one of its tiebreakers and instead turning to rankings from a private analytics firm.The Big Tens new rule will eliminate a potential timing headache but is unlikely to change who would make?it to the title game in the event of a three-way East Division tie between Michigan, Ohio State and Penn State this season. The Nittany Lions 24-21 upset of the Buckeyes on Saturday night left both teams at 3-1 in the conference. Penn States only loss is to Michigan, which is 4-0 in league play. If Penn State wins out, Michigan loses only to Ohio State, and the Buckeyes win out, all three teams would finish 8-1 with their losses among themselves.Therefore, the Big Tens first four tiebreakers wouldnt apply.They are:1. Records vs. one another (all three would be 1-1)2. Intradivision records3. Records vs. next-highest-placed teams in the division, in order of finish (fourth place through seventh)4. Records vs. all common conference opponentsSo a three-way tie then would go to overall winning percentage, which would eliminate Penn State because it lost to Pittsburgh and would have two overall losses, compared to one for Ohio State and Michigan. It then would come down to the head-to-head record between the Buckeyes and Wolverines, which would send Ohio State to Indianapolis.Thats not a different outcome, however, than what using the CFP rankings likely would create.Penn State likely would be ranked well below Ohio State and Michigan. And if Ohio State beat Michigan in the final game of the regular season, that most likely would convince the committee to rank the Buckeyes ahead of the Wolverines in the ensuing CFP poll.What would have happened if Penn State hadnt lost to Pitt? Or what if?a scenario arises in the future in which there is a similar three-way tie but each team has the same overall winning percentage?Under the new rules, the sixth tiebreaker is: The representative will be chosen by random draw.Thats right. A division champ and potential playoff contender could be decided by the league drawing names out of a hat.? Luke Shaw Manchester United Jersey . -- Lou Brocks shoulder-to-shoulder collision with Bill Freehan during the 1968 World Series and Pete Roses bruising hit on Ray Fosse in the 1970 All-Star game could become relics of baseball history, like the dead-ball era. Fred Manchester United Jersey . -- If this was Aaron Gordons final home game at Arizona, and it almost certainly was, then he went out in style. . Catch all the action on TSN2 at 11pm et/8pm pt. The nine-time Big 12 champion Jayhawks are positioning themselves for another title, as they have run out to a flawless 6-0 mark in conference play thus far. Timothy Fosu-Mensah Jersey . 24 Baylor in a Big 12 clash between teams trending in opposite directions. Andrew Wiggins made 10-of-12 from the foul line and scored 17 for Kansas (14-4, 5-0 Big 12), which capped a stretch of four straight games against ranked opponents unscathed. Alexis Sanchez Manchester United Jersey . The recently retired Stern was elected Friday to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and will be enshrined with the class of 2014 on Aug. Working the waiver wire is crucial to succeeding in fantasy basketball. With so many games, injuries and endless shifts in rotations throughout the season, we need to source stats from free agency in order to maximize our imaginary rosters.In this weekly series we identify players available as free agents in at least half of ESPN leagues at each position. Some nominations are purely specialists capable of helping in one or two categories, while others deliver more diverse and important statistical offerings. Either way, we believe the names below -- ordered by ownership rate at each position -- can contribute positively to fantasy rosters.Point guardJrue Holiday, New Orleans Pelicans (Owned in 48.0 percent of ESPN leagues): This is our last call for Holiday, a lead guard who tied for 14th in the NBA in usage rate last season and is likely to return to action this month. The Pelicans are eighth in the league in pace with 101 possessions per 48 minutes, adding upside to Holidays already rich production profile upon his return.J.J. Barea, Dallas Mavericks (40.2): Tied with Kyle Lowry among point guards in usage rate this season, Barea is also sixth in the league in drives per game. Already a valuable source of 3-pointers, assists and points, Barea also claims increased value playing behind a brittle starting point guard in Deron Williams.Ish Smith, Detroit Pistons (31.5): Smiths ownership is dwindling as Reggie Jackson nears a return, but this shift appears a bit premature, at least in deeper leagues. With Jackson still a few weeks off, we can expect nearly 30 minutes per game and helpful support in dimes and steals from Smith.Shooting guardJustise Winslow, Miami Heat (44.5): With multiple steals in four of his past six games -- as of Sunday -- Winslow can help in a scarce category. It also helps to consider that the Heat wing is averaging 36 minutes per game, tied for 11th in the league.Tyler Johnson, Miami Heat (41.8): We prefer Johnson to his teammate Winslow, as he provides more scoring and production from beyond the arc in addition to an uptick in assist output with Goran Dragic currently ailing.Sean Kilpatrick, Brooklyn Nets (31.9): A weekly inclusion in our waiver series, Kilpatrick has lofted double-digit field goal attempts in all but three games this season. Afforded rare freedom to shoot from the arc for the Nets, a team that ranks second in the NBA in pace, Kilpatrick merits more attention from fantasy investors.Thabo Sefolosha, Atlanta Hawks (10.5): The rare defensive specialist, Sefolosha is second in the league in steals per game. Steals are an entirely difficult stat to accumulate for fantasy rosters built around frontcourt assets, so adding this larcenous guard can help balance out the bench in these scenarios.Josh Richardson, Miami Heat (3.9): Were nominating three shooting guards from the same team as worthy waiver options, mostly because the void left by Dwyane Wade has left a good deal of opportunitty for these players to consume.dddddddddddd Richardsons ownership is deflated thanks to an injury that saw him sidelined in the early weeks, but now that hes back to playing steady minutes, he can help in assists -- hes assuming starting point guard duties with Dragic ailing -- and 3-point production.Small forwardMichael Kidd-Gilchrist, Charlotte Hornets (43.7): We need to look past Kidd-Gilchrists meager scoring output and instead focus on the fact hes averaging 1.3 blocks and 1.6 steals in addition to eight boards. Such helpful defensive metrics allows us to then take on more hollow scoring commodities to balance out production.C.J. Miles, Indiana Pacers (33.9): An efficient rate of .489 points per touch rates second behind only DeMar DeRozan in this efficiency metric among players averaging at least 15 minutes this season. Afforded the starting spot over Monta Ellis this past weekend at shooting guard, there could be a telling shift underway with Miles earning increased exposure and trust from the coaching staff.Maurice Harkless, Portland Trail Blazers (17.6): Similar to Kidd-Gilchrist, Harkless wont wow you in scoring production, but with 30 minutes per game in an up-tempo scheme, hes helping owners in steals, blocks and 3-point production.James Ennis, Memphis Grizzlies (11.6): Another cheap path to 30 minutes per game, Ennis is a 3-and-D commodity to consider in deeper formats.Power forwardTrevor Booker, Brooklyn Nets (42.1): With Brook Lopez again struggling on the glass and not playing every game, the Nets rely on Bookers rebounding and defense in the frontcourt. A steady double-double threat thanks to the Nets amazing pace, Booker also ranks seventh in the league in steals per game.Robert Covington, Philadelphia 76ers (25.3): The shooting percentages are atrocious, but its quite rare to find a player averaging at least two steals and 3-pointers per game. If your league doesnt count shooting percentages, Covington can provide positive production.Cody Zeller, Charlotte Hornets (16.2): Averaging nearly 25 minutes in November and regularly starting ahead of Roy Hibbert lately, Zeller provides useful block production at a scarce position.CenterTyson Chandler, Phoenix Suns (46.9): Once Chandler returns to action for the Suns (he is currently away due to a family matter), he can continue dominating on the glass, as the steady vet is third in the league in rebounds per game and fourth in rebounding chances per game.Clint Capela, Houston Rockets (33.1): As the key rim protector for the Rockets, Capela provides strong block metrics and worthy rebounding and steal rates.Kelly Olynyk, Boston Celtics (5.1): Considerably underappreciated by the fantasy market, this stretch big is averaging 17.5 points over his past two games and is a strong complementary scorer to Al Horford in the frontcourt. ' ' '