Now all the former world number one needs to do is avoid his ‘Friday curse’ to take another step towards a second European Tour title in four events and give himself a boost ahead of next week’s Open Championship . Sweden’s Kristoffer Broberg had established a new record of 65 at a windswept Royal Aberdeen after going out in the first group at 6:30am, but that lasted two hours as McIlroy carded eight birdies – including six in seven holes around the turn – and just one bogey. Press Association Not for the first time this season, Rory McIlroy started a tournament in brilliant fashion with a course-record 64 in the opening round of the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open. The 25-year-old used the 20mph winds to his advantage in amazing fashion on the 13th, driving the green on the downhill 436-yard par four. But he was equally pleased by the controlled iron shots which went 50 yards less than usual after practice for links golf following his “lads holiday” in Ibiza paid off. McIlroy said: “Everything was pretty much on. I controlled my ball flight really well which is the key to me playing well in these conditions and on these courses. “I’ve been working the last 10 days on keeping the ball down, hitting easy shots and taking spin off it and I went out there today and really trusted what I practised.” McIlroy revealed he had also driven the 13th in Wednesday’s pro-am, although it probably still came as a shock to the group ahead who were still on the green – which included Ian Poulter. “I’m driving the ball really well and I feel if I can get driver in my hand and have an advantage on the field I should do it,” he added. “Going out this morning in these conditions I thought anything in the 60s would be a good score so to shoot something better than that is pleasing. “I told Poulter it was a 3-wood but it was a driver. He was on the green trying to flex his muscles.” It is the fourth time in 13 events McIlroy has shot 64 or better in an opening round this season, but the two-time major winner has won none of those tournaments. His first-round scoring average of just under 68 leads the PGA Tour but his second-round average is almost five shots worse. “I’ve got off to a lot of good starts and tended to fall away. Hopefully that won’t be the case this week,” McIlroy added. “It’s more mental than anything but I am really comfortable with my game at the minute. ” McIlroy famously said after the 2011 Open at Sandwich that there was no point in changing his game for one week a year, while 12 months ago he missed the cut at Muirfield and labelled his own play “brain dead” following an opening 79. “It’s chalk and cheese,” he added. “This time last year I was trying to get the ball under control and not really too confident with anything and this year is totally different. “I’m more confident than ever in my ability to hit the shots I need in this sort of golf. I’m going to make it my favourite style of golf for two weeks of the year!” The scoring overall was excellent in the conditions, with McIlroy leading by one from Broberg and Argentina’s Ricardo Gonzalez, with fellow Northern Irishman Michael Hoey another shot back on five under after covering the back nine in 29 with four birdies and an eagle. Gonzalez was somewhat hoarse after cheering on his country’s football team in their World Cup semi-final win over Holland but he added: “I think it’s one of the best rounds of this year and that’s why I’m very happy now. To make 65 on that wonderful course, with my son on the bag, that’s great. “I enjoyed the match and maybe this is the key to play well, to relax and enjoy the day. I would like Argentina to win the World Cup and also if I can win here it would be amazing. It’s my dream.” Defending champion Phil Mickelson finished four shots off the lead after a 68 which featured an eagle, two birdies and a solitary bogey caused by three putts on the 18th.
Corwin’s four touchdown passes went to four different Bulldogs, including senior wide receiver Shane Feller (Charles City, Iowa), who caught the second TD. Feller finished with his first 100-plus receiving day with 102 yards on career-high six catches. Feller has had an outstanding season as he second on the team in catches with 11 and yards with 174 and is tied for lead in touchdown catches with two. Buy Tickets Live Stats Valpo Game Notes Drake is picked to finish third in the 2019 Pioneer Football League Coaches Preseason Poll as it returns eight All-PFL performers. Four of those PFL selections return on defense in defensive linemen, Gavin Dineen and Erin Morgan, linebacker Zac Rujawitz and safety Will Warner. The quartet were part of last season’s unit that ranked in the top 15 in nearly every defensive statistical category. Warner had an outstanding junior season that was capped by being named Drake’s first first-team All-American since Eric Saubert in 2015 and the Bulldogs’ first Associated Press first-team All-American since 1982. Individually, Warner was second in the nation in interceptions with eight to also tie the Drake program record. He also led the nation in interception return yardage at 223 total yards. Outside of his interceptions, Warner was second on the team in solo tackles with 41 and successfully defended a total of 12 passes. Dinnen was a 2018 All-PFL First Team selection who recorded 3.0 sacks and 38 tackles. Morgan was selected to the 2018 All-PFL Second Team after he tallied 3.5 sacks, 8.0 tackles for loss and 21 tackles at defensive end. Rujawitz started all 11 games and is the top returning tackler with 54, including 22 solo stops. On the other side of the football, Drake will have a new quarterback under center in true freshman Ian Corwin. Corwin comes to Drake after a decorated prep career for Jenks High School in Tulsa, Okla. At Jenks, Corwin broke 15 school records, went 29-8 in three seasons as the starter and helped Jenks finish as state runners-up in 2018. Corwin will play behind an experienced offensive line and will have help from the Bulldogs’ top three leading rushers and receivers from last season. Corwin’s top three receiving targets, Devin Cates, Steven Doran and Mitch McFarlane combined for 1,865 receiving yards and 21 receiving touchdowns. The Bulldogs’ top three returning rushers, Braeden Hartwig, Drew Lauer and Cross Robinson ran for 935 combined yards and seven touchdowns. Also, back is senior punter Ross Kennedy. Kennedy was an All-PFL honorable mention selection last season. He recorded 52 punts for an average of 37.3 yards, including a season-long 57-yarder against Montana. Kennedy placed 17 punts inside the 20-yard line and didn’t kick a touchback all year. He finished the season No. 93 among FCS punters with his average of 37.3 yards per punt. Print Friendly Version Scouting DrakeDrake begins a new era in 2019 under the leadership of first-year head coach Todd Stepsis. Stepsis, who is the 27th head coach in Drake football history in its 126 seasons. Stepsis takes the reins of the Bulldogs’ program after serving as the program’s defensive coordinator for the past five seasons under previous head coach Rick Fox. As the defensive coordinator, Stepsis, built the Drake defense into one of the nation’s top units and coached a total of 42 all-conference selections including the program’s all-time leading tackler, John Hugunin and the most recent Pioneer Football League Defensive Player of the Year, Nathan Clayberg. DES MOINES, Iowa – The Drake University football team welcomes Valparaiso Saturday in its Pioneer Football League home opener at Drake Stadium. Kickoff against the Crusaders is scheduled for 1 p.m. and its Homecoming and Friends and Family Weekend for the Drake campus. RewindThe Bulldogs began league play with a dominant road win at Marist, 41-17, last Saturday. Drake started fast against the Red Foxes, scoring on its first offensive drive after the Bulldogs’ defense forced a punt. Quarterback Ian Corwin (Tulsa, Okla.) found Devin Cates (Yuba City, Calif.) for a 22-yard touchdown and Drake never looked back as it would lead by as many as 31 points to improve to 8-0 all-time against Marist. Corwin had a career day with four touchdown passes and 255 yards on 20-of-29 passing. He was honored nationally for his outstanding performance by being named the FCS Stats National Freshman Player of the Week. Joining Corwin with award hardware was junior defensive back Jeran Proctor (Johnston, Iowa), who earned his first PFL Defensive Player of the Week. Proctor finished with three tackles and picked off a Red Foxes’ pass late in the second quarter that helped set up a Bulldogs’ touchdown just before halftime. Drake Game Notes Live Video Drake (1-3, 1-0 PFL) hosts Valpo (0-4, 0-0 PFL) for just its second home game this season and first since Sept. 7. Live Audio Story Links read more
At least one expert believes A’s first-round draft pick Kyler Murray could end up playing for Oakland after all.With the Raiders.Murray, the Oklahoma quarterback who won the Heisman Trophy after being the No. 9 selection by the A’s in the baseball draft, could be a target for coach Jon Gruden at No. 4, according to longtime ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper Jr. “You talk about a fascinating player, it’s Kyler Murray, and probably the most fascinating team in this draft for obvious … read more
CLICK HERE if you are having a problem viewing the photos or video on a mobile device OAKLAND – Though there is not an official timetable outlined for his recovery, Kevin Durant revealed on his Instagram page that he had surgery on Wednesday to treat a ruptured right Achilles tendon.“My road back starts now! I got my family and my loved ones by my side and we truly appreciate all the messages and support people have sent our way,” Durant wrote on Instagram about the injury he suffered … read more