retirement from international play, Gasol only p

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COLUMBIA, Mo. -- Barry Odom has tried to maintain optimism throughout his tumultuous first season as coach at Missouri.The Tigers (3-8, 1-6 Southeastern Conference) have struggled with everything from closing out games to scheme adjustment, as well as a string of season-ending injuries.Among the biggest bright spots was the development of the running game, especially the emergence of freshman Damarea Crockett, who eclipsed 1,000 yards rushing in Saturdays 63-37 loss to Tennessee . He rushed 24 times for a season-high 225 yards and a touchdown, surpassing former quarterback Brad Smiths school record for rushing yards by a freshman.Early Sunday, Crockett was arrested for suspicion of possession of marijuana and he was suspended for the season finale Friday against Arkansas.Odom expressed frustration with the incident , but also hopes others can learn from it.Damareas done a lot of great things and hes going to have a tremendous future, Odom said. He realizes one decision obviously affects this football program and it affects him. Its the discipline of doing everything right every day. Kids make mistakes and Im going to use every one of them that I can as a teachable moment on how we can become better.With 153 carries for 1,062 yards and 11 touchdowns, Crockett is Missouris leading rusher by more than 300 yards and ranks fourth in the SEC in total rushing, above names like Georgias Nick Chubb and LSUs Leonard Fournette. Arkansas (7-4, 3-4) ranks seventh in the conference in rushing yards allowed, surrendering 216.5 yards per game.Odom said replacing Crocketts production will likely be a collective effort between Ish Witter and Nate Strong.Itll be those two, Odom said. I thought Nate did some good things the other day for sure. Still, I said right after the game, I think hes got a really bright future ahead of him. Hes got size, hes got speed. Hes getting an understanding of the tempo and pace of the game.Witter has 157 carries for 738 yards and six touchdowns, which ranks 15th in the conference. He had career highs for attempts and rushing yards against Tennessee with 31 carries for 163 yards and two touchdowns.Ish did a great job the other night, Odom said. Im proud of what Ish has done this year. Hes fought through some injuries. He runs with more energy, with a little more purpose than he has. Hes done a good job.Witter attributes much of the teams success running the ball to its offensive line.Just being patient and reading the holes, Witter said. Our O-linemen theyve been doing their jobs. Theyre definitely making holes, so just figuring out how to be patient ... then see what happens.---More AP college football: www.collegefootball.ap.org and https://twitter.com/AP-Top25. Ben Gamel Jersey . Robredo, ranked No. 16, bounced back from an upset loss to Leonardo Mayer in the second round of the Royal Guard Open in Chile last week to down Carreno Busta in 1 hour, 25 minutes. On a day filled mostly with qualifying matches, fifth-seeded Marcel Granollers of Spain also entered the second with a 7-5, 3-6, 6-2 win over Aljaz Bedene of Slovenia, while Guido Pella of Argentina defeated Guillermo Garcia-Lopez of Spain 7-6 (6), 6-4 to advance. Denard Span Jersey . The Masters champion and winner of last weeks Australian PGA has a three-round total of 14-under 199 at Royal Melbourne. "Im in a really good position for tomorrow," Scott said. http://www.marinersrookiestore.com/Mariners-Edgar-Martinez-Kids-Jersey/ . Oaklands loss to Seattle clinched the ALs best record for the Red Sox with one day to spare in the regular season. "I think everybody was kind of watching," catcher David Ross said. "Demp (Ryan Dempster) came out before he went to the bullpen and was just yelling that they lost. Mike Marjama Jersey . Kiriasis and brakeman Franziska Fritz finished two runs in one minute 55.41 seconds -- a mere 0.01 seconds ahead of Meyers and Lolo Jones, who likely bolstered her Olympic hopes by helping give USA-1 a huge push in the second heat. Edwin Diaz Jersey . You can watch the game live on TSN at 7:30pm et/4:30pm pt. The Flyers had won seven of eight before dropping their last two outings on consecutive days over the weekend. Philadelphia was handed a 6-3 loss by the visiting Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday afternoon before dropping a 4-1 decision to the Rangers the following night in New York City. RIO DE JANEIRO -- The proud man looked over the heads of the gathered reporters and then wistfully at the exit. He spoke slowly.Pau Gasol sounded tired. You would, too, after pushing a rock up the hill four times and then helplessly watching it roll back down to the bottom. This time, which marked the end of Spains dream of Olympic gold at the hands of Team USA yet again, the semifinal ended by a not-as-close-as-it-sounds 82-76.Our hearts are bleeding, said Sergio Scariolo, who coaches Spain but whose penchant for drama marks him as indelibly Italian.Beating Team USA in Fridays Olympic semifinal was always going to be a heavy lift for Spain, let alone for the 36-year-old Gasol. He was already forced to take on more responsibility to cover for the absence of his injured younger brother and fellow NBA All-Star star, Marc. Then Nikola Mirotic, Spains only other legitimate inside threat, picked up his fourth foul before halftime.What made it more frustrating still is that he was convinced the Americans looked more beatable than in any of the four Olympic tournaments in which theyve knocked him and Spain out.Thats just the way I felt, Gasol said. They are not playing as well as other times theyve played, but they are still a very talented team individually.If we had been a little sharper with our shots, if we would have moved the ball a little better, if we would have boxed out more, and make it a two- or three-possession game, then youre talking about a whole different story.Thats three very big ifs if youre keeping score at home. And even if somehow all three of those wishes were granted, it might not have made much difference.Team USA had hold of this game from the start and the last time Spain had a real chance to make it competitive came with two minutes left, down 61-55. But Sergio Rodriguez missed a 3-point shot and Kevin Durant made his on the other end, imposing order once more on what had been a herky-jerky game because of all the chippy fouls and technicals.Its the most different game Ive coached internationally. It was just a real different game today, said U.S. coach Mike Krzyzewski.He was loathe to say more about the referees, though he credited the crew with bringing the coaches and captains together at the start of the second half and telling them, `Lets just play basketball.Like Gasol, his coach cited a few could-have-beens that might have changed the outcome. Scarioloo ticked off rebounding, blocked shots and intimidation.ddddddddddddThe first two were easy enough to quantify: the Americans had a 53-41 edge in rebounds and 7-1 in blocks; the intimidation factor is hard to measure, but easy to see. Like Gasol, a handful of his Spanish teammates have played in the NBA for several years. Unlike him, however, they took most of their chances from distance, rarely challenging the longer, quicker U.S. defenders one on one in the paint.Hes got back-to-the basket game and a face-up game and he can shoot the long ball, said DeAndre Jordan, the toughest U.S. defender in the post. Anything I could do to make his catches tough, play with length and physicality, I was just trying to make it as tough on him as possible.I tried to push him off the block and just play him with length, he added. I just wanted to make everything tough on him.Gasol scored a game-high 23, leading Spain as he has in nearly every climactic battle with the Americans. In 2004, he left Athens empty-handed and settled for silver both in 2008 and 2012. The best the Spanish can manage this time around will be bronze.Its been a tough tournament for aging international stars. Already, Argentinas Manu Ginobili and Frances Tony Parker announced the end of their Olympic careers and Gasol will be 40 when the next Tokyo Games convene in 2020.Asked about the possibility of his retirement from international play, Gasol only promised to assess his situation year by year.But at the end of this game, after exchanging handshakes and hugs with the friends and rivals he made over 16 seasons, he sauntered over to the USA bench and did the same with Coach K and assistants Jim Boeheim and Tom Thibodeau.Then Gasol stopped and looked into the crowd for a few long seconds, like a man drinking in a scene one final time.Paus a great player, Krzyzewski said. No one is going to stop him.But as Gasol answered his final question and began the long, slow walk down the hallway toward Spains gloomy locker room, there was a better-than-even chance he was wondering where hed find the strength after Sunday to climb back onto the international stage again.---Jim Litke is a national sports columnist for The Associated Press. Write to him at jlitke(at)ap.org and http://www.Twitter.com/JimLitke . ' ' '

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