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Good morning. Adam Silver must’ve read yesterday’s Sprint. The NBA corrected its mistake and named Devin Booker an All-Star. He’s replacing an injured Anthony Davis.
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In today's Sprint:
🏈  Staying home
⚽️  Record setting
⛳  Building a brand
Trivia: Which college football program spends the most on recruiting (as of 2019)?
  1. Alabama
  2. Ohio State
  3. Georgia
  4. Clemson

COLLEGE FOOTBALL
Recruiting
During recruiting Dead Periods, coaches aren’t allowed in-person contact with a recruit. Neither can the recruit take official or unofficial visits to schools (as deemed by the all-powerful NCAA).
Like the rest of us, they’re stuck with phone calls, texts, and Zoom.
Timeframe: Normally, the Dead Periods take place in August and December.
But this year that looked different. The NCAA imposed a ban on in-person recruiting last March when the pandemic struck. It was set to expire on April 15th.
That is, until the NCAA extended the ban through May 31st.
The consequences: Recruits, mostly 18-year-olds, may not get to visit campuses or interact in-person with potential coaches and teammates before making the biggest decision of their young lives.
And, as fans, we miss out on stories like Jim Harbaugh sleeping over at a recruit’s house or Nick Saban doing the Cupid shuffle. Even the famous father / son photoshoots are on hold.
Getting creative: Some schools figured out ways to skirt the Dead Period rules.
Zoom out: Forcing kids to choose schools without stepping foot on campus or talking with a coach in-person doesn’t seem like a great idea. Expect the Transfer Portal to be busy next season.

AROUND THE LEAGUES
Blue Moon
Aside from PSG’s 4-1 drubbing of Barcelona and FC Porto’s upset of Juventus, the first leg of the Champions League round of sixteen went as expected. Including City's continued dominance...
Manchester City 2 vs. Borussia Moenchengladbach 0
  • Across all competitions, City has won 19 games in a row. That’s the longest win streak ever by an English top flight club.
  • The best part? Pep Guardiola’s explanation, “We have a lot of money to buy a lot of incredible players.”
Real Madrid 1 vs. Atalanta 0
  • Considering it lost a man to a red card in the game’s opening minutes, underdog Atalanta put up a great fight. Ferland Mendy scored the clutch 86th minute goal to secure the first leg for Real.
NBA
(26-6) Utah Jazz 114 vs. (22-11) Las Angeles Lakers 89
  • The Lakers need Anthony Davis back ASAP. They’ve dropped four games in a row and, other than LeBron, look lost.
  • Meanwhile, the Jazz showed out in front of a national audience.
(15-16) Charlotte Hornets 124 vs. (20-11) Phoenix Suns 121
  • Malik Monk (29 pts) and Lamelo Ball (20 pts, 8 ast, 6 rebs) provided enough spark to push the Hornets past the surging Suns.
NCAAM
(18-5) #20 Arkansas 81 vs. (18-6) #6 Alabama 66
  • Shooting more free throws than the other team is always a good strategy. Arkansas took that to the extreme, outshooting Alabama 43 to 8 at the free throw line.
(11-9) NC State 68 vs. (15-6) #15 Virginia 61
  • After rising to #7 in the rankings, Virginia has lost three in a row. The Cavaliers have just two games to get right before the ACC tourney.
NHL
(12-4-1) Tampa Bay Lighting 3 vs. (12-5-1) Carolina Hurricanes 0
  • The reigning champs spread the puck around, ending the game with three different goal scorers and an impressive shutout.

THURSDAY WATCHLIST
NCAAM
Game of the day: #9 Iowa (17-6) vs. #3 Michigan (16-1) - 7:00 ET on ESPN
#4 Ohio St.(18-5) vs. Michigan St. (12-9) - 9:00 ET on ESPN
NBA
Dallas Mavericks (15-15) vs. Philadelphia 76ers (21-11) - 7:00 ET on TNT
Milwaukee Bucks (19-13) vs. New Orleans Pelicans (13-17) - 9:30 ET on TNT

WATER COOLER TALK
⛳  Macklemore, the rapper, launched a golf clothing line aptly named Bogey Boys. Dressed like this, he may mess around and win the 2021 Masters.
⛳  Tiger Woods underwent successful surgery. Afterward, he was “awake, responsive, and recovering.” Check out St. Andrews' remarkable tribute to Tiger.
🏈  Antoine Winfield Jr., who was fined $7,815 for flashing Tyreek Hill his patented peace sign in the Super Bowl, donated the same amount to the Bucs’ Youth Leadership Program.
🏀  The NBA announced the schedule for the second half of the season. The Lakers and Nets boast the most televised games (21 and 20, respectively).
⚽️  The US Women’s National team crushed Argentina 6-0 to win the SheBelieves Cup. The US Women haven't lost a match since November 2019.

ANSWER
C. The Georgia Bulldogs spent $2.6M on football recruiting in 2019, the most in the nation.
Fun fact: that’s more than the school’s 20 other sports combined.
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