DAVIE, Fla. (AP) — Laremy Tunsil and the Miami Dolphins were quick to agree on his value in the wake of his NFL draft freefall.
The offensive lineman from Ole Miss signed a $12.45 million, four-year contract before joining the Dolphins’ rookie minicamp that began Friday.
Touted at one time as a potential No. 1 overall choice, Tunsil was taken 13th last week after a video was posted on his Twitter account shortly before the NFL draft showing him smoking from a gas mask connected to a bong.
Another post on his Instagram showed an alleged text exchange with an Ole Miss football staff member that included Tunsil’s request for money. The school is investigating.
Tunsil said his social media accounts were hacked, likely costing him millions of dollars.
His deal is comparable to the $11.4 million, four-year contract signed by last year’s 13th draft pick, Saints offensive lineman Andrus Peat. Last year’s No. 1 pick, Jameis Winston, signed a $25.35 million, four-year deal with the Buccaneers.
Tunsil seemed excited to start the minicamp, first-year Miami coach Adam Gase said.
“We haven’t talked extensively,” Gase said. “Everything happened so fast after the draft. Our conversations have been short, but we’ve had a couple of good talks.”
The Dolphins conducted months of research into Tunsil and said they’re comfortable about his character. Tackle wasn’t a priority for the Dolphins, and Tunsil is expected to be tried at guard as they try various offensive line combinations during OTAs later this month.
“When you have the OTAs and you have the minicamp, you can do some experimenting,” Gase said. “It’s going to be a little bit of a process for us to figure out what the right five are for us, but we’re going to use all that time.”
Miami also signed quarterback Brandon Doughty, a seventh-round pick, and 12 undrafted college free agents: linebackers Akil Blount, Tyler Gray and James Burgess, center-guard Ruben Carter, long snapper Ryan DiSalvo, safety A.J. Hendy, tight end Gabe Hughes, defensive end Farrington Huguenin, kicker Marshall Koehn, cornerback Lafayette Pitts, and receivers Rashawn Scott and Brandon Shippen.
AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and http://twitter.com/AP—NFL
NEW YORK (AP) — A statue of Jesus that was stolen from a New York City church has been found in a trash can.
The Diocese of Brooklyn says the family that found the Sacred Heart of Jesus statue contacted church officials Thursday after seeing media reports about the theft.
Police said the statue was taken from Saint Peter and Paul Roman Catholic Church in Williamsburg on April 30. They released a surveillance video showing three suspects.
No arrests have been made.
The statue was damaged and is being restored at D’Ambrosio Ecclesiastical Art Studios in Mount Kisco.
KINGSTREE, S.C. (AP) — A high school employee in South Carolina who was caught on cellphone video using a chokehold on a 15-year-old student could face a criminal charge.
The Post and Courier (http://bit.ly/1ZjiMPy ) reports Kingstree Police Chief Eric Williams says the investigation remains ongoing as detectives try to work out a dispute with a magistrate over how to charge 69-year-old Mack Burgess. Currently, no one has been arrested.
The incident started Monday as a fight between two girls at Kingstree Senior High School. A police report says that in cellphone footage, Burgess can be seeing trying to separate the girls.
The report says that as the fight continued, Burgess grabbed one girl’s neck from behind. The video shows that after several seconds in the chokehold, the girl went limp. The girl was taken to a hospital for treatment.
The Williamsburg County School District has not confirmed Burgess’ position. Burgess couldn’t be reached for comment.
JANGSEONG, South Korea (AP) — The stars of the latest online trend in South Korea stay out of sight most of the day. Viewers don’t seem to mind waiting for hours while nothing happens. When the stray cats finally come to eat the food left out for them, people watching online sit enraptured by their feline charms.
The livestreamed “Cats Meok Bang” show is a twist on an online trend of young South Korean men and women tucking into feasts in real time, while viewers send messages and sometimes virtual cash. In a country where young adults increasingly live and dine alone, the shows have become so popular, some hosts have made small or big fortunes from the virtual cash sent from viewers.
While the stars of those programs seek a rapport with their fans, cat TV has gained viewers despite its uneventfulness. Some avid fans say they quit watching soap operas, reading online news or playing mobile phone game to watch. One says instead of smoking every time he gets stressed at work, watching the cats restores his peace of mind. While cats have generally fascinated the Internet, a show devoted to watching them eat is unusual. But it has helped change negative images of stray cats in South Korea, which has traditionally seen them as thieves.
“Cats Meok Bang,” a mash-up of the Korean words for broadcasting and eating, began by accident. While visiting his mother-in-law in a mountainous village in southwestern Korea, Koo Eun-je saw a cat outside, wondered how it survived and put out leftover fish for it. The next day, the cat was back so Koo kept feeding him, and the others who followed. Finally, he set up a surveillance camera and livestreamed the scene online.
“We started the channel simply for me and my wife to watch, but other viewers also started watching it,” the 35-year-old who previously worked as a web designer said in an interview near the lake where he goes bass fishing for the cats. “We guessed that there would be one or two cats, but now it turns out that 17 cats are coming to eat food.”
Four months on, 110,000 South Koreans watched the show on a monthly average and more than 10,000 of them have bookmarked the show. Some viewers sent him virtual cash items, which help cover his living expenses and cat food. Others send food and donations to Koo. As his cat TV got popular, at least one copycat show emerged.
Koo has turned the area outside the family home into what he calls “a restaurant for cats.” Its decorations change regularly. A chalkboard features the day’s menu, and about a dozen cats’ nicknames are written on a piece of paper. A fish bowl and trays of food sits on a pink blanked covering the ground. Everything is at a standstill except a pinwheel spinning in the background and small toys, a rubber duck and sometimes hula dancers, in the foreground. Serene music plays from a speaker. Larger toys like a Hello Kitty doll are in the background, and beyond them are rice and pepper farms and a patch of sky.
Sometimes birds fly by. Other times, Koo’s mother-in-law is seen sweeping outside the house. Once or twice a day, Koo appears onscreen, replenishing the food.
When a cat finally enters the scene, viewers share their excitement, exchange live chats, call out the cat’s name and tell them to eat well.
“They are like unexpected joy suddenly visiting you,” said Park Tae-kyung, a 33-year-old computer graphic designer in Seoul. For the past two months, Park said she played the cat TV all day at work on a computer screen and watched the show before going to bed. When she spotted a cat at work, her colleagues rushed to the screen to stare at it.
During the slow hours after patients leave his office, Yoo Young Hoon, a 49-year-old physician in Seoul, said he always plays the cat TV on the screen next to the medical chart. The show has replaced his time on Facebook and his day is full of newfound cat-related activities although he still does not plan to adopt one.
“I was never fond of cats before,” he said. “Now when I take a walk after lunch, I go to places where I might run into street cats.”
The only game he plays, he said, is Neko Atsume, the popular mobile game where users collect and feed cats.
Unlike dogs that are considered loyal to their owners, cats do not have a positive image in South Korea. Stray cats are called “thief cats” because they are believed to survive by stealing food from humans. They are unwelcomed creatures who scavenge rubbish. Many of South Korea’s older generations still view cats as a wicked, untrustworthy animal.
But viewers of the cat TV said they began paying attention to those animals roaming around the street with affection.
“I always walked looking straight ahead. But now once in a while I look down, like beneath a car, to see what kind of cats live near my house,” Park said. “When looked closely, those street cats were full of charms.”
Fortunately, the reactions from Koo’s mostly elderly neighbors were heart-warming.
“They were surprised how devotedly the meals were prepared,” Koo, the host of the cat TV, said. “I wish the show would be remembered as a channel that people can blankly stare the cats eating and rid their stress and worries from life.”
The livestream service is available only in Korean on Popkon TV but some past videos can be viewed here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCzxKMM2z5BW11OpFXiUcVyA
Lee reported from Seoul. She can be reached on Twitter: www.twitter.com/YKLeeAP
Her previous works can be found on: http://bigstory.ap.org/content/youkyung-lee
WASHINGTON (AP) — Long before Donald Trump swatted away his Republican presidential rivals, his likely Democratic opponent and her allies began laying traps for him.
Priorities USA, the lead super PAC backing Hillary Clinton, has already reserved $91 million in television advertising that will start next month and continue through Election Day. In addition, Clinton’s campaign and Priorities USA have both debuted online videos that cast Trump in a negative light — a preview of what voters will see on TV over the next six months.
So far, Priorities USA is the only group on either side that has rolled out such an ambitious advertising plan geared toward the general election. The group’s leaders say they’re trying to avoid what they see as the core mistake made by Trump’s Republican rivals — not pushing hard enough against him until it was too late.
“There’s a reason that we have a head start,” said Justin Barasky, a Priorities USA spokesman, “and it’s that we’ve taken Donald Trump seriously all along, unlike the Republicans.”
The group’s ad strategy will test what has been a hallmark of Trump’s GOP primary rise: his ability to withstand — even thrive in the face of — tens of millions of dollars in attack ads.
An Associated Press review of Priorities USA’s TV buys, collected by Kantar Media’s Campaign Media Analysis Group, reveals a formidable 22-week advertising blitz through what the group considers key battleground states: Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, Ohio and Virginia.
In those states, Priorities USA will start ads in major metropolitan areas, then broaden its outreach to smaller cities as the November election approaches. The group will also start ads on satellite TV in September.
According to the CMAG data, Priorities USA plans to spend about $4 million a week through most of June. The group then slows spending through July, taking off the weeks of the Republican and Democratic conventions, when widespread television coverage essentially provides free media time for the candidates.
Priorities USA returns to the airwaves in August and begins unloading $60 million in ads between September and Election Day. The week of the election, Priorities USA plans to spend about $8 million in the seven battleground states.
The heaviest concentration is in Florida, where the group has reserved $23 million in time, mostly in Orlando and in Tampa.
The group also plans to spend about $19.5 million in the traditional presidential bellwether state of Ohio. More than half is for Cleveland, Akron and Columbus.
There’s no substantive GOP counterweight to the pro-Clinton effort — partly because Trump has repeatedly trashed big donors and called the outside groups that can raise unlimited money from them “corrupt.”
As the presumptive GOP nominee, Trump is now beginning his outreach to donors. But even if he fully embraces outside help, he’s far behind: One super PAC backing him, Great America, was almost $700,000 in debt at the end of March.
Another group that was a major player in the 2012 race, American Crossroads, is still “evaluating what our specific role will be,” said spokesman Ian Prior.
Television ads are only one part of Priorities USA’s strategy. It is putting at least $35 million into online advertising between June and Election Day, Barasky said. Those ads will largely aim to drive up turnout among core Democratic groups: African-Americans, Hispanics, women and younger voters, Barasky said.
Trump is already getting a taste of what some these ads will say.
On Thursday, Priorities USA overlaid audio of Trump talking about “unifying” the Republican Party with images of violence that has erupted inside and outside of his massive rallies. “I think we’re going to win in November,” Trump says at the end. “NOPE,” reads text on the screen. “Vote for Hillary Clinton.”
That follows an online video the Clinton campaign put out Wednesday that features clips of prominent Republicans, including his former rivals, bashing Trump in every possible way.
“He needs therapy,” says former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush at the end of the spot.
Follow Chad Day and Julie Bykowicz on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/ChadSDay and http://twitter.com/Bykowicz
NEW YORK (AP) — James Taylor thought back four decades to his Carnegie Hall debut and said it was “the sort of cultural sign” that he had made it to a certain level of stardom.
“We celebrated,” the singer-songwriter said. “That’s why I don’t remember it that well.”
Taylor helped Carnegie Hall commemorate its 125th anniversary Thursday night with a gala concert that included performances by singer/pianist Michael Feinstein, soprano Renee Fleming, mezzo-soprano Isabel Leonard, pianists Emanuel Ax and Lang Lang, violinist Itzhak Perlman and cellist Yo-Yo Ma.
Two retired singers, soprano Martina Arroyo and mezzo-soprano Marilyn Horne, gave spoken tributes, and first lady Michelle Obama recorded a video that was played. Horne, who is 82, joked that she felt as if she’d been at Carnegie for all 125 years.
Host Richard Gere paid tribute to the violinist Isaac Stern, who made his Carnegie Hall debut in 1943, led the campaign that saved the hall from demolition after the New York Philharmonic moved to Lincoln Center in the 1962 and served as Carnegie’s president until his death in 2001.
“Mr. Stern, we thank you, sir,” Gere said to applause.
A two-part gala was held when Carnegie celebrated its centennial on May 5, 1991 — exactly 100 years after Tchaikovsky conducted his Festival Coronation March with the New York Symphony Orchestra during the first performance. The centennial gala opened with a world premiere, Joan Tower’s “Third Fanfare for the Uncommon Woman,” and James Levine and Zubin Mehta conducted the New York Philharmonic. Both programs were solely classical, with no musical tribute to the jazz greats who performed at Carnegie or the rock bands such as the Beatles and Rolling Stones.
This program, which lasted a little more than 90 minutes, was more varied, starting with classical and moving onto Feinstein and Taylor. With Pablo Heras-Casado conducting the Orchestra of St. Luke’s and the Oratorio Society of New York, Gere spoke between performances and listed many of Carnegie’s most famous performers, such as pianist Vladimir Horowitz and violinist Jascha Heifetz. He recounted anecdotes accompanied by video projections of more than a century of photographs and programs.
Among the highlights was Fleming and Leonard in the Barcarolle from Offenbach’s “Les Contes d’Hoffmann (The Tales of Hoffmann),” a revered singer and one of classical music’s rising stars. With the lights turning the hall a shimmering blue to evoke the mood of the sky above a Venetian Canal, Fleming’s vibrant, milky soprano and Leonard’s dusky mezzo combined in “Belle nuit, o nuit d’amour (Beautiful night, oh night of love),” a duet that made one think of music’s past and future.
Lang Lang, ever the showman, sparked in Ernesto Lecuona’s “… y la negra bailaba! (and black danced)” and later served as a celebrity page-turner for Ax during the encore as the two took turns at the keyboard.
Fleming was richly moving in Strauss’ “Morgen,” and Leonard gave a vocally hearty but dramatically restrained performance of the Habenera from Bizet’s “Carmen.”
After Horne and Arroyo spoke, the amplification was turned on for Fleming in Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelijah.” Feinstein injected the most energy when he sang and played George Gershwin’s “Strike Up the Band” and accompanied Leonard for an Irving Berlin and Jerome Kern medley.
Taylor, his voice having lost none of its sweetness at age 68, sang George Harrison’s “Here Comes the Sun” accompanied by Yo-Yo Ma and paid tribute to Prince when he inserted “purple” before “rain” in “Shower the People.” All the performers came on stage for the encore of Roger Edens’ “The Joint is Really Jumpin’ in Carnegie Hall,” made famous by Judy Garland.
On to the next quarter century.