The Rundown for April 7, 2020

CORONAVIRUS UPDATE… The number of coronavirus cases nationwide rose to 366,614 yesterday while the death toll reached 10,783, according to figures provided last night by Johns Hopkins University. President Trump spoke with political rival and former Vice President Joe Biden by phone yesterday, with discussion centered on the federal response to the coronavirus crisis. Meanwhile, South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster ordered all residents to remain at home except for visits with family members or essential outings to get groceries, medicine or exercise. Eight states have yet to impose formal “stay at home” orders during the outbreak.

WISCONSIN PUSHES ON WITH PRIMARY… Wisconsin is pushing ahead with its primary today despite a massive shortage of poll workers and voters’ fears of congregating. The Wisconsin Supreme Court voted 4-2 to side with Republicans in keeping turnout limited. Wisconsin Republicans picked up another win last night when the U.S. Supreme Court overturned a federal district judge’s ruling that required Wisconsin to count mail-in ballots if they arrived by April 13 even if they were mailed after election day.

JUDGE REINSTATES OKLAHOMA ABORTIONS… A federal judge yesterday reinstituted abortions in Oklahoma after Governor Kevin Stitt implemented a ban on all elective surgical procedures amid the COVD-19 outbreak. The judge issued a temporary restraining order for Oklahoma abortion providers after ruling that the governor’s ban would cause “irreparable harm” to women who are unable to get abortions. An executive order Stitt issued last month suspended all “elective surgeries and minor medical procedures” until today.

PELOSI TO BE HONORED… House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will be honored as the recipient of this year’s Profile in Courage Award by the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation. The award is given for an act, or a lifetime, of political courage. Pelosi, who has served in the House of Representatives since 1987, is the first female to be elected Speaker and the first person elected Speaker in non-consecutive terms in more than 60 years,. The Democrat from California worked with a Republican president to pass an economic bailout package in 200, and with a Democratic president to pass landmark healthcare reform in 2010.

STOCKS GAIN… Wall Street’s week got off to a good start yesterday with stocks posting substantial gains. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 1,628.15 points, or 7.73 percent, while the S&P 500 fell 6.97 percent and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 7.33 percent. Boeing stock rose 19.76 percent to lead the Dow’s rise.

LATE-NIGHT HOSTS JOIN VIRTUAL EVENT… Late-night talk-show hosts Jimmy Fallon, Jimmy Kimmel and Stephen Colbert have agreed to help host Global Citizen and World Health Organization virtual event next Monday to support health-care workers treating coronavirus patients. “One World: Together At Home” will feature musical guests including Billie Eilish, Billie Joe Armstrong of Green Day, Elton John, John Legend and Keith Urban. Funds will be directed to the World Health Organization for the purchase of additional personal protective gear for health-care workers who are treating COVID-19 patients and to provide basic assistance for those impacted by the pandemic.

ACTRESS HONOR BLACKMAN DIES… Actress Honor Blackman, who was best known for playing Pussy Galore in the 1964 James Bond film “Goldfinger,” has died of natural causes unrelated to the coronavirus pandemic, her family announced yesterday. She was 94. Blackman also had a memorable role as Cathy Gale in the 1960s TV series “The Avengers.”

MLB HALL-OF-FAMER AL KALINE DIES… Al Kaline, who played all 22 years of his career for the Detroit Tigers and was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1980,  died yesterday. He was 85 and reportedly had suffered a stroke recently. Kaline was a 15-time All-Star and a 10-time Gold Glove winner in right field, retired shortly after recording his 3,000th hit in 1974, his final season.

The Rundown for April 6, 2020

CORONAVIRUS UPDATE… The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S. has surpassed 312,000 and more than 8,500 people have died, according to figures released yesterday by Johns Hopkins University. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Director Dr. Anthony Fauci warned that the coming week is going to be “bad,” but said that the country could see a turnaround within seven to nine days. Meanwhile, a tiger in the Bronx Zoo became the first animal to test positive for the coronavirus in the U.S. The test was administered after the tiger developed a “dry cough,” according to the Wildlife Conservation Society. Also, the Navy captain who was removed from command of the carrier U.S.S. Theodore Roosevelt after expressing his concerns over the threat of coronavirus aboard his ship has tested positive for the virus. Captain Brett Crozier began exhibiting symptoms before his removal on Thursday. Crozier was fired after a letter he had emailed to Navy leaders was leaked to the San Francisco Chronicle. The letter detailed the failures on the service’s part to provide the necessary resources to swiftly move sailors off the carrier and disinfect areas on board as the virus spread through the ship.

MASS ORDERS OF MEDICAL SUPPLIES BEGAN MID-MARCH… The Associated Press reported yesterday that the federal government waited until mid-March to place bulk orders of desperately-needed medical supplies during the coronavirus pandemic. Health and Human Services reportedly ordered $4.8 million worth of N95 masks from 3M on May 12 and then placed another $173 million order on March 21, but neither contract required delivery of the products to the Strategic National Stockpile until the end of April. The stockpile is reportedly running critically low.

PANDEMIC IMPACTS MORE THAN A QUARTER OF THE ECONOMY… More than a quarter of the U.S. economy has come to a standstill amid the coronavirus pandemic, according to a report in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal. The report cited a study from Moody’s Analytics that indicated the daily output of the U.S. economy has fallen about 29 percent compared with the first week of March. The study also found that the U.S. economy was disproportionately tied to urban areas, with a tenth of the U.S. drop in daily output being tied to three counties Los Angeles, New York and Cook (Illinois) counties.

DEFENSE DEPARTMENT ORDERS FACE COVERINGS… Defense Secretary Mark Esper has ordered military personnel and other individuals on Defense Department property to wear “cloth face coverings” in accordance with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s coronavirus guidance. Esper also advised in a memo that DoD employees, family members and contractors “follow CDC guidelines on the use of cloth face coverings in public settings or where other social distancing.” President Trump defied the advisory and said he was “choosing not to” wear a mask.

THOUSANDS OF RENTAL CARS DESTROYED IN BLAZE… Authorities don’t yet know how many rental cars were destroyed in a weekend fire at Southwest Florida International Airport but say the number tops 3,500. Fire officials say there were only about 20 vehicles involved when firefighters were called Friday night but the blaze quickly burned out of control. The fire sent a massive plume of smoke above Fort Myers.

WEEKND TOPS ALBUM CHART… The Weeknd’s “After Hours” sold 138,000 copies to remain atop the Billboard 200 album chart for a second week. 5 Seconds of Summer’s “Calm” jumped into second place after selling 133,000 units. Lil Uzi Vert’s “Eternal Atake” dropped to third place after selling 84,000 copies. Dua Lipa’s “Future Nostalgia” debuted in fourth place after selling 66,000 units. Pearl Jam’s “Gigaton” capped the top five with 63,000 copies sold.

‘JAWS’ ACTRESS DIES… Actress Lee Fierro, who was best known for her appearance in the 1975 film “Jaws” has died after complications with the coronavirus. She was 91. In “Jaws,” Fierro played the mother whose son was killed by the shark that spreads terror across a beach town. Fierro reprised the role in the 1987 sequel, “Jaws: The Revenge.”

NFL HALL-OF FAMER BOBBY MITCHELL DIES… NFL Hall-of-Famer Bobby Mitchell died yesterday of natural causes at age 84. Mitchell launched his NFL career in 1958 as a halfback for the Cleveland Browns but was converted to flanker after his trade to the Washington Redskins. Mitchell retired in 1969 with 14,078 total yards and 91 career touchdowns. He was inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame in 1983.

RECORD-SETTING NFL KICKER DIES… Former NFL kicker Tom Dempsey died of coronavirus complications on Saturday night, family members confirmed yesterday. He was 73. Dempsey made history in 1970 as a member of the New Orleans Saints when he kicked a 63-yard field goal despite having been born without toes on his dominant foot. For 28 years, it remained the longest field goal in NFL history. More recently, Dempsey has been suffering from Alzheimer’s disease has been living in a New Orleans senior home where more than 50 residents have tested positive.

The Rundown for April 3, 2020

CORONAVIRUS UPDATE… More than 244,000 coronavirus cases have resulted in more than 5,900 deaths nationwide, according to figures released last night by Johns Hopkins University. Earlier in the day, the Labor Department reported that the number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits has soared by a record 6.6 million people to cap the largest single-week filing increase in history. The figure is more than twice more last week’s report of 3 million new filings. According to the report, Pennsylvania had the largest claims increase, with more than 362,000. Ohio was second, followed by Massachusetts, Texas and California.

STIMULUS CHECKS COMING… The Treasury Department doesn’t expect to start issuing direct deposits of Stimulus Bill funds to Americans before April 13 and it could take five months to mail out all the checks. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said yesterday at a White House coronavirus briefing that payments would go out within two weeks to people whose direct deposit details are on file with the government. Mnuchin had claimed previously that the money would go out as soon as Monday.

U.S. SOLD CHINA PROTECTIVE GEAR AS CORONAVIRUS SPREAD… USA Today reported yesterday that U.S. businesses sold $17.5 million worth of face masks, $13.6 million in surgical garments, and $27.2 million worth of ventilators to China at as the first confirmed coronavirus cases were recorded on American soil. Exports of personal protective gear skyrocketed in January and February when the virus was devastating China and U.S. intelligence agencies were warning of its spread. According to the Centers for Disease Control, the first confirmed coronavirus case in the U.S. was on January 20, The report comes as American doctors and health-care workers are facing a dire shortage of protective equipment.

HOUSE COMMITTEE TO OVERSEE WHITE HOUSE PANDEMIC RESPONSE… House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced yesterday that a new select committee will oversee how the Trump administration spends more than $2 trillion allocated to fight the coronavirus pandemic. House Majority Whip James Clyburn of South Carolina will chair the bipartisan Select Committee on the Coronavirus Crisis. The Trump administration is facing an onslaught of criticism from governors over delays in its response.

CARRIER COMMANDER RELIEVED OF COMMAND OVER CORONAVIRUS LETTER… The USS Theodore Roosevelt captain who expressed to Navy leadership concerns about a coronavirus aboard the aircraft carrier has been relieved of his command. Captain Brett Crozier will keep his rank, however, the Navy said. Crozier detailed his concerns in a letter that leaked to the press.

TAKASHI 6IX9INE RELEASED FROM PRISON… Rapper 6ix9ine was released from prison into house arrest yesterday due to concerns over his health amid the coronavirus pandemic. The 23-year-old rapper, whose real name is Daniel Hernandez, suffers from asthma that puts him at risk, a district court judge ruled. 6ix9ine was sentenced to two years in prison in December after previously pleading guilty to racketeering, firearms and drug trafficking charges.

‘TOP GUN’ RELEASE PUSHED BACK… “Top Gun Maverick” yesterday became the latest big-budget film to be rescheduled due to the coronavirus pandemic. Paramount Pictures announced that the release of the sequel to the 1986 original has been pushed back from June 24 to December 23. Tom Cruise reprises his “Maverick” character in the new film.

The Las Vegas Raiders have come to terms with free-agent safety Damarious Randall on a one-year contract.

The Rundown for April 2, 2020

CORONAVIRUS UPDATE… 884 Americans died over a 24-hour period, raising the U.S. death toll from coronavirus over 5,000, according to figures released last night by Johns Hopkins University. The Washington Post yesterday reported that the federal government’s emergency stockpile of protective equipment and medical supplies is almost exhausted. Officials told the paper that the situation has pitted the federal government against individual U.S. states in competition for safety gear. Vice President Mike Pence warned that the spread of coronavirus in the U.S. appears to be on a similar trajectory as Italy, where the death toll has exceeded 13,000.

FLORIDA, MISSISSIPPI TO IMPOSE LOCKDOWNS… At least 33 states and the District of Columbia are not on stay-at-home orders after the governors of Florida and Mississippi dropped their weeks-long resistance yesterday. Florida Governor Ron DeSantis imposed a 30-day stay-home order barring residents from venturing outside except for essential purposes. Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves issued a stay-at-home order that goes into effect 5 p.m. Friday. Meanwhile, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo ordered all playgrounds and basketball courts in New York City to close. He reported yesterday that the state’s death toll is approaching 2,000.

E-CIGARETTE MAKER TARGETED IN FTC COMPLAINT... The Federal Trade Commission filed an antitrust complaint against the tobacco giant Altria and Juul yesterday. The complaint alleges that Altria sought to monopolize profits and fix price when it bought a 35 percent stake in Juul in late 2018 for $12.8 billion while the two still had competing brands on shelves. The FTC says the investment included a clause that prevented Juul from competing against Altria for six years. The FTC called the investment and its associated agreements “an unreasonable restraint of trade” and is seeking to undo the investment.

U.S. TO ENHANCE COUNTERNARCOTICS OPERATIONS… President Trump announced yesterday that the U.S. will deploy Navy ships near Venezuela as part of enhanced counternarcotics operations in the Western Hemisphere. Additional Navy destroyers, combat ships, aircraft helicopters, Coast Guard cutters and Air Force surveillance aircraft will double the U.S.’s capabilities in the region, Trump said. Secretary of Defense Mark Esper added that the operation would deal a blow to Venezuelan President Maduro’s control over the country.

STOCKS FALL… Wall Street continued its tumble yesterday on reports of job losses and fears of the coronavirus pandemic. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down 973.65 points, or 4.44 percent, while the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite both closed down 4.41 percent. The plunge extended the Dow’s losses from Tuesday, when it dropped 410 points to end Wall Street’s worst first quarter in history and worst three-month performance since 1987.

ADAM SCHLESINGER DIES… Singer-songwriter Adam Schlesinger died yesterday of the coronavirus. He was 52. Schlesinger co-founded the band Fountains of Wayne, which is best-known for its 2003 hit song “Stacy’s Mom.” In addition to winning three Emmys and a Grammy, he received an Oscar nomination for writing the title track to the 1996 movie “That Thing You Do.”

ACTOR ANDREW JACK DIES… Actor Andrew Jack, who played Caluan Ematt in “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” and “Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” died Tuesday at a hospital in Surrey, England, after contracting the COVID-19 virus, his agent confirmed yesterday. Jack was 76. He also served as a dialogue coach on “The Lord of the Rings” movies, “Guardians of the Galaxy” and the “Avengers” films. More recently, he was working on “The Batman.”

The Dallas Cowboys have signed defensive end Aldon Smith to a one-year contract.


The Rundown for April 1, 2020

PRESIDENT TRUMP WARNS OF ‘PAINFUL TWO WEEKS’… President Trump issued a warning yesterday that Americans are facing a “very, very painful two weeks.” National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Director Dr. Anthony Fauci projected that 100,000 to 200,000 Americans could die in the coming months. Dr. Deborah Birx, the top public health official coordinating the coronavirus task force, suggested extensive mitigation efforts could yield results by July. Meanwhile, the death toll from the pandemic topped 3,500 yesterday.

MASSIVE DRUG BUST AT CALIFORNIA-MEXICO BORDER… Authorities announced yesterday that more than two tons of drugs, including opioids, methamphetamine and cocaine, were seized following the March 19 discovery of a cross-border tunnel between Mexico and the U.S. The San Diego Tunnel Task Force said the tunnel extended about 2,000 feet and connected warehouses in Tijuana and San Diego. The tunnel had an average depth of 31 feet and a width of 3 feet. It was equipped with ventilation, lighting and an underground rail system.

LARGE QUAKE STRIKE IDAHO… A magnitude 6.5 earthquake struck about 45 miles west of Challis, Idaho, last night. The U.S. Geological Survey said the earthquake had a depth of 6.2 miles and about 16,000 people reported feeling the tremors. The Boise Police Department reported there were no immediate reports of damage.

DATA BREACH AT MARRIOTT… Marriott announced yesterday that the personal information of as many as 5.2 million of its hotel guests was compromised in a data breach in mid-January. Names, addresses, email addresses, phone numbers, loyal account information, business names, genders, birthdays, partnerships and room preferences were accessed, the hotel chain said. Marriott discovered the breach in late February after an unusually large of guest information was accessed using the login credentials of two employees at a franchised property. Marriott has created a website and a call center to help affected customers.

STOCKS TUMBLE… Stocks continued to tumble yesterday on the final day of the worst first quarter in American history. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down 410.32 points, or 1.84 percent, while the S&P 500 fell 1.6 percent and the Nasdaq Composite slid 0.95 percent. The decline followed the U.S. Federal Reserve’s announcement that it will begin lending money to foreign central banking systems.

LEADS IN ‘TIGER KING’ MISSING-MAN CASE… The Hillsborough County Sheriff in Florida says the popular Netflix docuseries “Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness” is producing new leads in the case of a man who has been missing since 1997. The missing man, millionaire Jack Donald “Don” Lewis, was married to Big Cat Rescue owner Carole Baskin, who was the intended target of a murder-for-hire plot. The plot led to a 22-year prison sentence for former Oklahoma zookeeper Joseph Maldonado-Passage, who went by the name “Joe Exotic.”

CHRISTOPHER MELONI REPRISES ELLIOT STABLER ROLE… Christopher Meloni is reprising his “Law & Order: SVU” character, Elliot Stabler, for a spinoff of the show that will air on NBC. Meloni’s character will be the boss of the organized crime division of the NYPD, instead of a Special Victims Unit detective. NBC has ordered 13 episodes.

NFL HOPES TO RELEASE SCHEDULE MAY 9… The NFL announced yesterday that it hopes to release its 2020 schedule on May 9 and expects to play a full slate despite the coronavirus pandemic. NFL Executive Vice President Jeff Pash said his confidence stems from the flattening of the pandemic’s curve that has occurred in other countries. The regular season is set to begin on Thursday, September 10 with a game hosted by the defending Super Bowl-champion Chiefs.

The Rundown for March 31, 2020

CORONAVIRUS UPDATE… More than 163,800 confirmed cases have been reported throughout the U.S. and there have been more than 3,000 deaths, according to figures released last night by Johns Hopkins University. Hospitals in New York City say intensive care units are now overwhelmed but help is on the way in the form of the Navy hospital ship Comfort, which has arrived in New York Harbor. Also yesterday, Virginia, Maryland, Arizona and Tennessee joined 28 other states in issuing stay-at-home orders.

CORONAVIRUS TASK FORCE COORDINATOR WORRIED… White House coronavirus task force coordinator Deborah Birx said during an appearance on NBC’s “Today” show yesterday that she is “very worried about every city in the United States” and believes that without drastic precautions, there could be at least 2 million fatalities. Birx said that “if we do things perfectly” the number of fatalities could be limited to as many as 200,000. “I think everyone understands now that you can go from five to 50 to 500 to 5,000 cases very quickly,” Birx warned.

TRUMP WAS TALKED INTO CONTINUING SOCIAL-DISTANCING GUIDELINES… National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Director Dr. Anthony Fauci said yesterday that he had to plead “strongly” with President Trump to stop him from withdrawing social-distancing guidelines early. During an appearance on CNN’s “New Day,” Fauci said Trump changed his mind after he saw models showing as many as 200,000 people could die. On Sunday, Trump publicly abandoned his hope of reopening the U.S. economy by Easter and confirmed he would keep federal guidelines on social distancing in place through the end of April.

MACY’S FURLOUGHING EMPLOYEES… The “majority” of Macy’s roughly 130,000 employees are being furloughed starting this week in the face of the revenue drop brought on by the coronavirus pandemic. All 775 Macy’s stores closed on March 18 but the retailer continues to sell products online. The company adopted measures that were intended to prevent the layoffs, but they weren’t “enough” to avoid cutting back on the number of employees.

FLORIDA PASTOR ARRESTED FOR VIOLATING STAY-AT-HOME ORDER… The pastor of a Florida megachurch was arrested yesterday for violating a safer-at-home order by holding two Sunday services that drew hundreds of people. Pastor Rodney Howard-Browne was charged with unlawful assembly and violation of a public health emergency order in Hernando County. The pastor’s church is located in Tampa.

ABORTION EFFORTS BLOCKED… Federal judges yesterday temporarily blocked efforts in Texas and Alabama to ban abortions during the coronavirus pandemic. A separate ruling found that a new Ohio order is also unconstitutional if it prevents abortions from being carried out. The rulings were delivered as lawsuits were also filed in Iowa and Oklahoma after governors in those states similarly ordered a stop to non-emergency procedures and specifically included abortion among them.

‘JOE EXOTIC’ FILES SUIT… A central figure in the hit Netflix documentary “Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness” has filed a lawsuit over his conviction in a murder-for-hire plot. Former Oklahoma zookeeper Joseph Maldonado-Passage, who went by the name “Joe Exotic,” is currently serving a 22-year prison sentence. His suit seeks nearly $94 million in damages, claiming his conviction was based on false and perjured testimony. Defendants include the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the U.S. Department of the Interior, the assistant U.S. attorney who prosecuted him and several witnesses.

AUTHOR TOMIE dePAOLA DIES… Popular children’s book author Tomie dePaola died yesterday in a New Hampshire hospital of complications from surgery performed after a fall last week. He was 85. DePaola was best-known as the writer of the Strega Nona picture book series. He wrote or illustrated more than 270 books that sold nearly 25 million copies.

NEW OLYMPIC DATES… Organizers yesterday announced new dates for the Olympic Games and the Paralympic Games following the first-ever postponement of the quadrennial sports events. The Summer Games in Tokyo are now scheduled to begin on July 23, 2021, while the Paralympic Games will start a month later. The new dates will allow minimum disruption to the international sports calendar and will allow athletes time to finish the qualification process, according to the International Olympic Committee.

IMPACTED COLLEGE ATHLETES GRANTED EXTRA YEAR… The NCAA Division I Council agreed yesterday to grant an extra year of eligibility to all spring-sport student-athletes whose seasons were canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic. The decision applies to all athletes, not just seniors. The NCAA will leave it up to each school to decide whether to grant seniors in spring sports less or equal financial aid next year, the NCAA said.

The Rundown for March 30, 2019

CORONAVIRUS GUIDELINES EXTENDED… The White House is extending federal guidelines to prevent the spread of the coronavirus outbreak through April 30. The decision comes after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a travel advisory urging residents of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut to avoid non-essential travel. There are 142,328 cases of the coronavirus in the U.S. and 2,436 deaths, according to numbers released last night by Johns Hopkins University.

CORONAVIRUS HITS LIBERTY UNIVERSITY… Liberty University, which defied medical experts by partially reopening its campus amid the coronavirus pandemic, has confirmed that 11 students are battling coronavirus symptoms. University president Jerry Falwell Jr. initially planned to follow Virginia’s public health directives and close the school to almost all students but apparently changed his mind. Eight-hundred of the 1,900 students that initially returned to campus last week have left.

SENATORS’ STOCK SELL-OFFS INVESTIGATED… CNN reported yesterday that the Justice Department is investigating stock sell-offs by members of Congress who had been privately briefed about the brewing coronavirus crisis. The FBI has already interviewed Republican Senator Richard Burr of North Carolina, who dumped as much as $1.7 million worth of stock. Republican Senator Kelly Loeffler of Georgia is also on investigators’ radar, as she and her husband sold up to $3 million worth of stock.

VIRUS-LADEN CRUISE SHIP TO DOCK IN FLORIDA… A Holland America cruise ship carrying four dead passengers and more than 130 others who are battling flu-like symptoms has received clearance to dock in Florida in the “near future.” The ship has been anchored outside the Panama Canal after being denied entry. One of the dead passengers is reported to be an American.

STRONG STORMS BATTER MIDWEST, SOUTH… Officials say there were no deaths reported after strong storms brought tornadoes, high winds, hail and rain to parts of the Midwest and South on Saturday. Tornadoes were spotted in Arkansas, Illinois, Iowa and Wisconsin as thunderstorms swept through. High winds and a possible tornado were also reported in Indiana. Jonesboro, Arkansas, was particularly hard-hit, as it was struck by an EF3 tornado with winds of up to 140 mph.

JOE DIFFIE DIES, JOHN PRINE IN CRITICAL CONDITION… Joe Diffie, who had a string of chart-topping hits in the 1990s, has died from complications related to the coronavirus. He was 61. Two of Diffie’s 13 albums went platinum and another two were certified gold… Meanwhile, singer-songwriter John Prine is in “critical” condition with Coronavirus symptoms, according to family members. The 73-year-old Prine was hospitalized on Thursday and was intubated Saturday night. He has survived two battles with cancer.

THE WEEKND TOPS ALBUM CHART… The Weeknd’s new release, “After Hours,” sold 444,000 copies to top the Billboard 200 album chart. Last week’s champ, Lil Uzi Vert’s “Eternal Atake,” slipped into second place with 115,000 units sold. Lil Baby’s “My Turn” dropped to third place after selling 60,000 copies. Bad Bunny’s “YHLQMDLG” sold 51,000 units to finish fourth. Conan Gray’s “Kid Krow capped the top five with

The Detroit Lions have agreed to a one-year contract with wide receiver Geronimo Allison.

The Washington Redskins have signed Ronald Darby to a one-year deal.