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• Six first-year eligible candidates are among the 27 semi-finalists for the Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2018: CB/S Ronde Barber, G Steve Hutchinson, LB Ray Lewis, LB Brian Urlacher, WR Randy Moss andDE/DT Richard Seymour. The Class of 2018 will be unveiled during NFL Honors, a two-hour prime-time awards special to air nationally (Feb. 3, 2018) on the eve of Super Bowl LII.
• The New York Knicks named Dan Sabreen vp-public relations, effective Nov. 27. Sabreen has spent more than a decade at CBS Sports, most recently as vp-communications.
• For every save made by goalkeepers during MLS Eastern and Western Conference Championships and MLS Cup, Allstate said it would donate two new soccer nets to fields in need in that club's city. MLS goalies participating inlcude Zack Steffen (Columbus Crew), Joe Willis (Houston Dynamo), Stefan Frei (Seattle Sounders) and Alex Bono (Toronto FC).
• 2018 BBWAA ballot unveiled, with 14 1st timers including Chris Carpenter, Johnny Damon, Andruw Jones, Chipper Jones, Hideki Matsui, Jim Thome, Johan Santana, Omar Vizquel Full ballot

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2018 NFL Pro Bowl Voting (To Date)
1. Carson Wentz QB Philadelphia Eagles 273,367
2. Tom Brady QB New England Patriots 239,989
3. Le’Veon Bell RB Pittsburgh Steelers 227,771
4. Todd Gurley RB Los Angeles Rams 215,687
5. Antonio Brown WR Pittsburgh Steelers 215,584
6. Drew Brees QB New Orleans Saints 207,751
7. Kareem Hunt RB Kansas City Chiefs 204,611
8. Jared Goff QB Los Angeles Rams 200,346
9. Russell Wilson QB Seattle Seahawks 183,630
10. Alex Smith QB Kansas City Chiefs 178,392
11. Rob Gronkowski TE New England Patriots 168,663
12. Zach Ertz TE Philadelphia Eagles 156,183
13. Julio Jones WR Atlanta Falcons 124,556
14. Joey Bosa DE Los Angeles Chargers 117,480
15. Kyle Juszczyk FB San Francisco 49ers 116,816
16. Aaron Donald DT Los Angeles Rams 102,194
17. Luke Kuechly LB Carolina Panthers 101,131
18. A.J. Buoy CB Jacksonville Jaguars 92,686
19. Everson Griffen DE Minnesota Vikings 91,621
20. Geno Atkins DT Cincinnati Bengals 88,126
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Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#46Ul8rBF4XpB4lo0.99
Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#JZxA5jXY4rCwemgZ.99
Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#JZxA5jXY4rCwemgZ.99
Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#46Ul8rBF4XpB4lo0.99
Wednesday
Jun282017

Dale Jr. Unveils JR Nation Appreci88ion Campaign To Fete Fans, Nascar Career

By Barry Janoff

June 27, 2017: Arnold Palmer had Arnie’s Army, his most loyal fans who would support and honor him through thick and thin.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. has JR Nation, his most loyal fans, many who have been with him long before his first win in the 1998 Coca-Cola 300.

Now in his final laps as a fulltime Nascar driver, having shared this past April his decision not to race full time following the current season, Earnhardt Jr. has launched what he called JR Nation Appreci88ion, a five-month campaign to get closer to, and connect with, his fans.

"The rest of this season is about two things . . . Winning and #Appreci88ion," Earnhardt Jr. wrote on his social media platforms, which include more than two million followers on Twitter and nearly three million on Facebook.

In a video posted to Nascar.com, Earnhardt Jr. unveils the campaign and even thanks many of his fans by name.

The effort begins July 1 at the Daytona International Speedway during the Coke Zero 400 and will continue through the completion of the 2017 Monster Energy Nascar Cup series.

According to Earnhardt Jr. he will "create opportunities in social media, at-track activation, fan engagement, industry participation and philanthropy to celebrate his historic career while offering gestures of gratitude to everyone who made the ride possible."

He said that includes fans, teammates, colleagues, family members, lifelong friends and "anyone who influenced (my) time in the driver’s seat."

Earnhardt Jr. has also unveiled a line of Appreci88ion merchandise, including hats, T-shirts and mugs. The goods will be available at tracks in the Dale Earnhardt Jr. souvenir trailer and at ShopJRNation.com.

Among other activation, Earnhardt Jr. said he would release weekly videos "recollecting memories and milestones achieved at each of the specific racing venues."

His sponsors and industry partners will have featured roles as well, activating in "unique ways to give back to JR Nation."

Earnhardt Jr.’s partners include Nationwide, Mountain Dew, Chevrolet, Hellmann’s, Breyers, Suave, Goodyear, Wrangler, Under Armour and Axalta.

He said he selected  Daytona International Speedway  to launch the effort because "it has been home to many (of m) career highlights," including two Daytona 500 trophies (2004, 2014), four total Cup wins, seven non-points Cup victories and six Nascar Xfinity Series wins.

"My expectations were very low when I started racing — I just wanted to pay my bills," Earnhardt Jr. said in a statement. "If I could pay bills and make a living by racing, that was a win.

"Now some 18 years later, I look at what became of it, and I just feel grateful. I wouldn’t be where I am today without the support of so many people, especially fans.

"So as I visit tracks for the last time in this role, that is my motivation. I’m going to drive as hard as I can for the people who made an 18-year Cup career possible," he said.

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