Morning State Sports Briefs: Rodgers status for practice today undeciidedWisconsin Sports
-- Green Bay Packers’ coach Mike McCarthy says he’ll decide this morning whether quarterback Aaron Rodgers will take part in today’s only fully padded practice of the week.
GREEN BAY - Green Bay Packers’ coach Mike McCarthy says he’ll decide this morning whether quarterback Aaron Rodgers will take part in today’s only fully padded practice of the week.
Rodgers hurt his left calf in Sunday night’s Green Bay victory at Houston, on a touchdown run that was nullified by a holding penalty. He did some individual work yesterday. But he was held out of team drills for the first time since he had a concussion in December of 2010. Rodgers said the calf was tight yesterday but there’s no way he’ll sit out this Sunday’s game at Saint Louis. The Packers and Rams are both 3-3, and the Pack is trying to string together two straight wins for the first time this year.
McCarthy says corner Sam Shields and outside linebacker Nick Perry would most likely not play against the Rams. Shields hurt a shin against the Texans. Rookie Casey Hayward and second-year pro Davon House shared practice time at Shields’ spot yesterday. The rookie Perry suffered a knee injury in the last game. McCarthy said he’ll be evaluated again today, and he’ll wear a brace. Nose tackle B.J. Raji missed the Texans’ game with an ankle injury, but he expects to return this weekend. Four other injured players returned to practice yesterday – tight ends Andrew Quarless and D.J. Williams, linebacker Frank Zombo, and rookie safety Sean Richardson. Quarless and Zombo sat out six weeks after being placed on the physically unable-to-perform list. Richardson practiced for the first time since late September, after nursing a bad hamstring – and he has not played in a regular season game yet. Also, the Packers placed linebacker D.J Smith on injured reserve yesterday, after he was ruled out for the season with a torn ACL knee ligament. It’s possible that Quarless or Zombo will end up taking that roster spot.
The Green Bay Packers filled two openings on their eight-member practice squad today, by signing defensive lineman Drew Vanderlin and receiver Jeremy Ross. Vanderlin graduated from Green Bay Southwest High School before playing his college ball at Michigan Tech. He finished second on the school’s all-time career sack list with 20. The 6-3, 288-pound Vanderlin took part in the Packers’ rookie orientation and tryout camp in May. Ross is a rookie from California. Besides being a receiver, he ranked second on Cal’s all-time punt return list with an average of 15-point-two yards per return. The Packers lost a practice squad player today, when the Indianapolis Colts signed defensive lineman Lawrence Guy to their 53-man roster. The second opening was created last weekend, when offensive lineman Greg Van Roten was promoted to the Green Bay roster.
Game-Four of the American League Championship Series was postponed last night as thunderstorms were about to reach Detroit. The Tigers are going for a four-game sweep of the New York Yankees – and they’ll try to eliminate the Yanks this afternoon, and advance to their first World Series in six years. It would be the first Fall Classic for ex-Brewers’ first baseman Prince Fielder, who has struggled at the plate with a .182 batting average for the post-season. Game-Four starts at 3:07 this afternoon from Comerica Park. Max Scherzer will start for the Tigers. Former Brewers’ southpaw C.C. Sabathia will go for the Yankees.
Meanwhile, the Saint Louis Cardinals took a two-games-to-one lead in the National League title series with a 3-to-1 home win over San Francisco. Game-Three was delayed by rain for almost three-and-a-half hours in the seventh inning. Matt Carpenter hit a two-run homer for the Redbirds, who can take a commanding three-games-to-one lead in Game-Four tonight.
Two veterans with the Milwaukee Brewers have become free agents, after they rejected outright assignments to the minors. Reliever Livan Hernandez and catcher Yorvit Torrealba have both decided to shop around for new big league teams, instead of reporting to Milwaukee’s Triple-“A” farm club at Nashville. Also, the Brewers added minor league reliever Jesus Sanchez to their 40-man big league roster. The Brewers acquired Hernandez in June after Atlanta designated him for assignment. He had a 7.68 ERA and a 3-0 with no saves in 26 relief appearances in 2012. The Brewers picked up Torrealba from Toronto in September, with the idea of providing veteran experience had the Crew made the playoffs. He was 0-for-5 for the Brewers, after batting .233 for Toronto this year with four homers and 14 RBI’s. Sanchez went 4-and-1 this year with Triple-“A” Nashville, after going 3-2 at Double-“A” Huntsville earlier in the season. His ERA with Nashville was 1.71 in 20 relief appearances. And he had a 1.59 ERA at Huntsville in 32 contests.
The University of Wisconsin men’s soccer team ended a four-game losing streak to UW-Green Bay, with a 3-0 victory in Madison last night at the McClimon Track and Soccer Complex. Jerry Maddi, David Cabahn, and Nick Janus scored as the Badgers improved to 5-6-3 overall. The game was played during a steady rain with strong wind gusts. Green Bay’s record fell to 2-9-3.
The University of Wisconsin volleyball team was shut out at Minnesota last night, three-sets-to-none. The two teams traded points in the final set, as the Badgers staged a late comeback attempt which fell short. Ellen Chapman had 13 kills and Anne-Marie Hickey had 13 digs for Wisconsin, which dropped to 3-6 in the Big Ten and 15-7 overall. No. 10 ranked Minnesota, which had the nation’s second-highest hitting percentage coming in, improved to 7-2 in league play at 16-4 overall.
The University of Wisconsin men’s basketball team is ranked 21st in a preseason coaches’ poll put out by USA Today. The Badgers went 26-10 a year ago under coach Bo Ryan. Marquette University also received votes from the coaches, but the Golden Eagles are 10 spots away from the Top-25. They and Wisconsin both made the NCAA Sweet-16 a year ago. But the coaches apparently figure that Marquette lost a lot when seniors Jae Crowder and Darius Johnson-Odom moved on at the end of last season.