The Sideline – March 25

Lucky 7: Handful of local selections perfect

In the Daily Reporter’s polling of local officials for their Final Four predictions prior to the start of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament last week, seven such “celebrities” remain perfect.

IHSAA commissioner Bobby Cox, Dave Scott (Hancock County Visitors Bureau), Jeannine Gray (Stillinger Family Funeral Home), Zach Muegge (Muegge Heating, Plumbing and Cooling), Michael Low (Forty Financial), and the Daily Reporter’s Noelle Steele (editor) and Kristy Deer (staff writer) saw all four of their Final Four squads make it through to the Sweet 16. Of those seven, only Low (Wisconsin) and Deer (Duke) have a team other than Kentucky winning the NCAA championship, and only Deer is predicting Kentucky to fall short of the Final Four, with a loss to Notre Dame.


Indianapolis signs NFL veteran cornerback Carr

INDIANAPOLIS — Indianapolis has added cornerback Deveron Carr, signing the NFL veteran who is trying to restart his career.

The 5-foot-11, 190-pound Arizona State alum played nine games with Tampa Bay in 2013. He was primarily a special teams player before he was waived in August.

Indy decided to give him a chance after he performed well at the NFL’s veterans scouting combine in Arizona.

The Colts have been trying to reinforce their secondary during the offseason after releasing safety LaRon Landry and losing another safety, Sergio Brown, in free agency. Indy already has re-signed its other starting safety, Mike Adams.


Rahal gets sponsor for 5 races, including Indy

INDIANAPOLIS — Steak ‘n Shake will enter IndyCar this year as primary sponsor for Graham Rahal for five races, including the Indianapolis 500.

It’s the first foray into racing for the Indianapolis-based company, which claims to be “the home of the original Steakburger.”

The partnership with Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing begins next month at Long Beach, California, and includes both races at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Detroit and Mid-Ohio.

Joked team co-owner and Indiana native David Letterman: “I’ve been eating them since I was 11. Finally, free Steakburgers!”

Maxim Magazine branding also will be featured on the racecar. Maxim and Steak ‘n Shake are both owned by Biglari Holdings Inc.


Florida Gulf Coast falls to Florida State

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Florida Gulf Coast struggled from 3-point range and missed a chance to extend its 26-game winning streak.

FGCU, which includes New Palestine graduate Bethany Murrell, made just 7 of 25 shots from beyond the arc.

The Eagles lost for the first time since November, and Florida State advanced to the Sweet 16 with a 65-47 win on Monday.

“To beat a team as good as Florida State on their home court, you’re going to have to shoot the 3 at a high percentage,” FGCU coach Karl Smesko said.

“You’re going to have to finish your layups at a high percentage. When we got those types of shots, it wasn’t our day to make it. Florida State is just too good to leave that many points out on the floor.”

Taylor Gradinjan scored 12 points for FGCU (31-3), but the Eagles couldn’t generate nearly enough offense to keep up with FSU (31-4).

Murrell, a junior, did not score in two minutes of action Monday for the Eagles, who will lose just one starter to graduation.


Prep Calendar


Baseball: Greenfield-Central at New Palestine (scrimmage), 5:30 p.m.; Mt. Vernon at Eastern Hancock (scrimmage), 5:30 p.m.

Softball: Greenfield-Central at New Palestine (scrimmage), 5:30 p.m.; Mt. Vernon at Eastern Hancock (scrimmage), 5:30 p.m.

Wednesday, April 1

Track: Mt. Vernon at Fishers, 5 p.m.