The Rundown for November 27, 2020

CORONAVIRUS UPDATES… The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S. has reached 12,879,762 and the nation’s death toll stands at 263,413, according to figures released last night by Johns Hopkins University… Health officials fear that the rising number of deaths could reach levels initially seen in the spring, when the pandemic first hit the U.S. More than 2,300 deaths were reported on Wednesday, which marked a 57-percent increase over the 14-day average. Officials warn that daily deaths could double within a matter of days.

AMERICANS CELEBRATE THANKSGIVING… Americans marked a Thanksgiving Day holiday yesterday amid the ongoing pandemic. Nearly 6 million Americans traveled by air prior to the holiday despite political leaders and health officials discouraging travel or large gatherings. The number of air travelers is less than half of the same period last year. The traditional Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City was scaled back significantly. The route was reduced from 2-1/2 miles to one block and balloon handlers were replaced by specially rigged vehicles. Spectators were forbidden from lining the streets.

COURT BLOCKS NEW YORK COVID RESTRICTIONS… New York Governor Andrew Cuomo yesterday called Wednesday night’s Supreme Court decision blocking coronavirus restrictions imposed on religious gatherings “irrelevant.” The High Court voted 5-4 in favor of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn and two Orthodox Jewish congregations that had sought an injunction to block the restrictions from being enforced. Cuomo said the high court’s ruling would have no impact on the state’s virus control efforts because the red zone status for the area in question had expired last week.

TRUMP SAYS HE’LL LEAVE WHITE HOUSE IF BIDEN GETS EC VOTES… President Trump came as close as he has come to conceding the presidential election yesterday when he said he will leave the White House if the Electoral College votes for President-elect Joe Biden. Trump maintained it would be hard for him to concede under the current circumstances, however, and declined to say whether he would attend Biden’s inauguration. Biden won the election with 306 Electoral College votes to Trump’s 232. Electors are scheduled to meet on December 14 to formalize the outcome. Biden also leads Trump by more than 6 million in the popular vote tally.

MEXICO INVESTIGATES WAL-MART… Mexico’s anti-monopoly commission signaled yesterday that it has launched a formal investigation into Wal-Mart’s Mexican subsidiary. While the Federal Economic Competition Commission did not identify its target, Wal-Mart de Mexico told investors earlier this week that it has been notified that it is that target of an investigation. The commission has publicly revealed that it is looking into possible monopolistic practices in wholesale and retail goods distribution and sales.

ENTERTAINMENT
ALEX TREBEK DELIVERS RECORDED MESSAGE
… “Jeopardy!” yesterday day aired a Thanksgiving message that had been pre-recorded by former host Alex Trebek prior to his death earlier this month. Trebek succumbed to his battle with pancreatic cancer on November 8 at age 80. The final episodes that he recorded is scheduled to air the week of January 4, 2021.

MADS MIKKELSEN REPLACES JOHNNY DEPP IN NEST ‘BEASTS’ FILM… Danish actor Mads Mikkelsen has been tapped to replace Johnny Depp in the next “Fantastic Beasts” film. Warner Bros. The 55-year-old Mikkelsen is best known for his roles in the James Bond film “Casino Royale,” “Hannibal” and “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.” He will portray the dark wizard Gellert Grindelwald in the third “Fantastic Beasts” installment, which is currently in production outside London. Its release date is set for July 15, 2022.

SPORTS
NFL SCORES

Houston 41 – DETROIT 25
… Deshaun Watson passed for 318 yards and four touchdowns in leading the Texans (4-7) past the Lions (4-7). Will Fuller had six catches for 171 yards and two scores. Defensive end J.J. Watt returned a first-quarter interception 19 yards for a TD.

Washington 41 – DALLAS 16… Antonio Gibson rushed for 115 yards and three touchdowns as Washington (4-7) rolled past the Cowboys (3-8). Montez Sweat intercepted an Andy Daulton pass and returned it 15 yards for a score.

SUNDAY’S NFL SCHEDULE
the N.Y. Giants (3-7) are at Cincinnati (2-7-1)…
Atlanta (3-7) hosts Las Vegas (6-4)…
Arizona (6-4) is at New England (4-6)…
Jacksonville (1-9) hosts Cleveland (7-3)…
Carolina (4-7) is at Minnesota (4-6)…
Buffalo (7-3) hosts the L.A. Chargers (3-7)…
Miami (6-4) is at the N.Y. Jets (0-10)…
Indianapolis (7-3) hosts Tennessee (7-3)…
Baltimore (6-4) is at Pittsburgh (10-0)…
Denver (4-6) hosts New Orleans (8-2)…
San Francisco (4-6) is at the L.A. Rams (7-3)…
Tampa Bay (7-3) hosts Kansas City (9-1)…
Chicago (5-5) is at Green Bay (7-3)

MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL
Seattle (7-3) is at Philadelphia (3-6-1)

TODAY’S TOP 25 COLLEGE FOOTBALL SCHEDULE
No. 2 Notre Dame is at No. 19 North Carolina…
No. 13 Iowa State is at No. 17 Texas…
No. 15 Oregon is at Oregon State…
No. 24 Iowa hosts Nebraska

SATURDAY’S TOP 25 COLLEGE FOOTBALL SCHEDULE
No. 1 Alabama hosts No. 22 Auburn…
No. 3 Clemson hosts Pittsburgh…
No. 4 Ohio State is at Illinois…
No. 5 Texas A&M hosts LSU…
No. 6 Florida hosts Kentucky…
No. 8 Northwestern is at Michigan State…
No. 9 Georgia is at South Carolina…
No. 12 Indiana hosts Maryland…
No. 16 Wisconsin hosts Minnesota…
No. 18 USC hosts Colorado…
No. 20 Coastal Carolina is at Texas State…
No. 23 Oklahoma State hosts Texas Tech…
No. 25 Tulsa is at Houston

TOP 25 MEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL SCORES
No. 1 Gonzaga 102, Kansas 90…
No. 3 Villanova 83, Arizona State 74…
No. 8 Illinois 97, Chicago State 38…
No. 15 West Virginia 78, VCU 66

The Rundown for November 26, 2020

CORONAVIRUS UPDATES… The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S. has reached 12,772,653 and the nation’s death toll stands at 262,222, according to figures released last night by Johns Hopkins University… There more than 2,000 deaths reported yesterday for the first time since May… the nation’s leading infectious diseases expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, made a “final plea” yesterday for Americans to follow COVID-19 guidelines this Thanksgiving.

STATE DEPARTMENT ANNOUNCES TRANSITION UNDERWAY… The State Department has informed White House staff that the transition process has begun and a team is supporting the turnover to the incoming Biden administration. The news comes after weeks of Trump campaign legal challenges to the election results. President-elect Joe Biden yesterday called for an end to the “grim season of division” in a Thanksgiving speech. He said Americans were at war with coronavirus, not each other.

TRUMP PARDONS FLYNN… President Trump announced yesterday that he has “granted a Full Pardon” to his former national security adviser Michael Flynn. Flynn pleaded guilty twice to lying to the FBI during its investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 presidential campaign about his conversations with then-Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak during the presidential transition. At the time, Trump tweeted that he fired Flynn because he had lied to Vice President Mike Pence.

MANHATTAN DA SEEKS TO CHARGE MANAFORT… The Manhattan District Attorney is once again seeking mortgage fraud charges against President Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort after failing twice in lower courts. Last month, an intermediate appeals court upheld a judge’s decision to dismiss the case on double jeopardy grounds. Last December, a trial court found that the state charges against Manafort mirrored the federal case that led to his 7-1/2-year sentence for misleading the U.S. government about lucrative foreign lobbying work, hiding millions of dollars from tax authorities and encouraging witnesses to lie on his behalf. The 71-year-old Manafort was released to home confinement in May because of concerns about the coronavirus less than a year into his sentence.

UNEMPLOYMENT NUMBERS RISE… Data released by the Labor Department yesterday found that the number of Americans seeking unemployment aid rose last week for a second straight week to 778,000 amid the ongoing pandemic. Prior to the coronavirus spread, weekly jobless claims hovered around 225,000. Consumers increased their spending last month by just 0.5 percent, the weakest rise since the pandemic was declared.

ENTERTAINMENT
MACY’S DAY PARADE KICKS OF THANKSGIVING
… For many American families, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade will kick off today’s holiday celebrations. The parade will feature its usual assortment of balloons, dancers and floats. Events include performances from the Broadway casts of “Ain’t Too Proud,” “Hamilton,” “Mean Girls” and “Jagged Little Pill,” a musical built around the music of Alanis Morissette. The Broadway performances were pre-taped.

JOHNNY DEPP DENIED APPEAL IN DEFAMATION CASE… Johnny Depp has been denied in his High Court appeal of a British court’s ruling that he assaulted his ex-wife Amber Heard. Depp had unsuccessfully sued a tabloid for libel over a 2018 article labelling him a “wife beater.” The judge who dismissed Depp’s appeal said it lacked a “reasonable prospect of success” and ordered the actor to pay the defendant’s legal fees totaling almost $850,000.

SPORTS
TODAY’S NFL SCHEDULE

Houston (3-7) is at Detroit (4-6)…
Dallas (3-7) hosts Washington (3-7)

NFL NEWS… Today’s scheduled game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and Baltimore Ravens has been moved to Sunday due to positive coronavirus tests in the Ravens organization. Team officials announced on Monday that “multiple members” of the organization had tested positive. Over the next two days, running backs Mark Ingram II and J.K. Dobbins, defensive tackle Brandon Williams and outside linebacker Pernell McPhee were placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list, meaning they either tested positive for COVID-19 or had been identified as close contacts of someone who tested positive. Ingram and Dobbins had tested positive for the virus, Ravens head coach John Harbaugh said.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL NEWS… University of Alabama football coach Nick Saban has tested positive for COVID-19 and will not coach Saturday’s game against Auburn. The 69-year-old Saban reportedly received the positive test yesterday morning and is showing “very mild symptoms.” Offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian will take over in the interim.

TOP 25 MEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL SCORES
No. 3 Villanova 76, BOSTON COLLEGE 67…
No. 4 VIRGINIA 89, Towson 54…
No. 5 IOWA 97, North Carolina Central 67…
No. 7 WISCONSIN 77, Eastern Illinois 67…
No. 8 ILLINOIS 122, North Carolina A&T 60…
No. 10 KENTUCKY 81, Morehead State 45…
No. 13 MICHIGAN STATE 83, Eastern Michigan 67…
No. 14 TEXAS TECH 101, Northwestern State 58…
No. 15 WEST VIRGINIA 79, South Dakota State 71…
No. 16 NORTH CAROLINA 79, Charleston 60…
No. 17 HOUSTON 89, Lamar 45…
No. 18 Arizona State 94, Rhode Island 88…
No. 19 TEXAS 91, Texas Rio Grande Valley 55…
No. 23 OHIO STATE 94, Illinois State 67…
No. 24 RUTGERS 86, Sacred Heart 63

The Rundown for November 24, 2020

CORONAVIRUS UPDATES… The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S. has reached 12,414,292 and the nation’s death toll stands at 257,651, according to figures released last night by Johns Hopkins University… The American Academy of Pediatrics revealed yesterday that there were more than 144,000 new cases among children last week,. The AAP says there has been a 28 percent increase in child Covid-19 cases over the last two weeks and children now account for more than 11 percent of all confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S.

PRESIDENTIAL TRANSITION UNDERWAY… The General Services Administration has taken its first step toward beginning the formal transfer of power in the White House. GSA Administrator Emily Murphy sent President-elect Joe Biden a letter informing he that the formal transition process is underway and he has been granted access to briefings and funding. President Trump has yet to concede or acknowledge Biden’s victory despite a growing number of Republican leaders, business executives and national security experts who have urged the president to let the transition begin.

BIDEN FILLING POSITIONS… President-elect Joe Biden’s transition team has unveiled its first series of Cabinet nominations and White House assignments. Biden named Avril Haines as director of national intelligence and Alejandro Mayorkas as Department of Homeland Security secretary. Biden also has chosen former Secretary of State John Kerry as his special presidential envoy on climate with a seat on the National Security Council and Linda Thomas-Greenfield as U.S. ambassador to the United Nations. The president-elect has confirmed that he has named Antony Blinken as secretary of state and Jake Sullivan as national security adviser. Biden is expected to name former Fed chief Janet Yellen as Treasury secretary.

MOB BUST IN PHILLY… Federal prosecutors yesterday announced indictments for 15 alleged mafia members in South Philadelphia and southern New Jersey. Members allegedly belonging to “La Cosa Nostra” under 56-year-old mob-leader Steven “Stevie” Mazzone, 56, were charged with bookmaking and loan sharking in Philadelphia and Atlantic City beginning in October of 2015. Ten defendants are charged with racketeering and the other five are charged with running illegal gambling rings, extortion and conspiracy to sell illegal drugs. Prosecutors accuse some of the defendants of conspiring to kidnap and kill an associate who sold them fake drugs in Philadelphia. Other defendants included Domenic Grande, aka “Dom,” “Mr. Hopkins,” “Mr. Brown,” or “Dom14,” age 41 as well as Joseph Servidio, aka “Joey Electric,” 60; Salvatore Mazzone, aka “Sonny,” age 55; Joseph Malone, age 70; Louis Barretta, aka “Louie Sheep,” age 56; Victor DeLuca, aka “Big Vic,” age 56; Kenneth Arabia, aka “Kenny,” age 67; Daniel Castelli, aka “Danny,” aka “Cozzy,” aka “Butch,” aka “Harry,” age 67; Carl Chianese, age 81; Anthony Gifoli, aka “Tony Meatballs,” age 73; John Romeo, age 58; Daniel Malatesta, age 75; Daniel Bucceroni, age 66; and John Michael Payne, age 34.

GAS PRICES AT THEIR LOWEST IN 5 YEARS… AAA spread good news yesterday by noting that gas prices heading into Thanksgiving are the lowest they’ve been in five years. The national average for a gallon of regular gasoline is about $2.11. The nation’s lowest average is in Missouri, where a gallon costs $1.75 per gallon. Hawaii has the most expensive gas at $3.25 per gallon.

ENTERTAINMENT
‘THE QUEEN’S GAMBIT’ SETS NETFLIX RECORD
… “The Queen’s Gambit” has become Netflix’s most-watched scripted limited series. The streaming service announced yesterday that the seven-episode series has been watched by 62 million households since its October 23 premiere. The series has ranked Netflix’s top 10 in 92 countries and No. 1 in 63 countries, including the United Kingdom, Argentina, Israel and South Africa.

KAITLYN BRISTOWE WINS ‘DANCING’… Kaitlyn Bristowe beat out fellow finalists Justina Machado, Nev Schulman and Nelly to win Season 29 of “Dancing with the Stars.” Bristowe was paired with professional dancer Artem Chigvintsev. Johnny Weir, Skai Jackson, A.J. McLean, Monica Aldama, Charles Oakley, Carole Baskin, Anne Heche, Jesse Metcalfe, Vernon Davis and Chrishell Stause were eliminated earlier in the season.

SPORTS
MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL

L.A. Rams 27 – TAMPA BAY 24
… Matt Gay booted a tie-breaking 40-yard field goal with 2:36 remaining and the Rams (7-3) held on to down the Buccaneers (7-4). Jordan Fuller’s second interception of a Tom Brady pass came in the final minute and sealed the victory. Jared Goff threw for 376 yards and three touchdowns.

NFL NEWS… Team officials have confirmed that Cincinnati Bengals rookie quarterback Joe Burrow tore his ACL and MCL and suffered other structural issues in his left knee in Sunday’s loss to Washington. Burrow, the Heisman Trophy winner out of LSU, was carted off the field in the third quarter after he was sandwiched by two Washington tacklers. Burrow’s 2,688 passing yards are the fourth most ever by a rookie. He was on pace to break Andrew Luck’s record for most passing yards by a rookie (4,374).

The Rundown for November 23, 2020

CORONAVIRUS UPDATES… The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S. has reached 12,226,643 and the nation’s death toll stands at 256,745, according to figures released last night by Johns Hopkins University… The pharmaceutical company Pfizer and its partner BioNTech have submitted an application for emergency authorization in the U.S. of their Covid-19 vaccine, which has been shown by tests to be 95 percent effective. Pfizer hopes to produce up to 50 million doses by the end of the year. A Food and Drug Administration vaccine advisory committee is set to meet on December 10 to discuss whether to authorize the vaccine… Los Angeles County has issued an order that restricts in-person dining at restaurants, breweries, wineries and bars for a minimum of three weeks. The order becomes effective Wednesday at 10 p.m.

BIDEN TO START NAMING CABINET APPOINTMENTS… President-elect Joe Biden will announce the first of his Cabinet appointments tomorrow and is planning for a scaled-down inauguration due to the coronavirus pandemic, his aides revealed yesterday. The New York Times and Bloomberg reported that former deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken will be Biden’s nominee for Secretary of State. Bloomberg also reported that Jake Sullivan, a former aide to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, will be named national security adviser.

TRUMP YET TO CONCEDE… President Trump has yet to concede the presidential election despite his legal team compiling a 2-34 record in post-election court challenges. He is facing mounting pressure by allies in his own party to accept the results and press on in serving Americans amid a pandemic. Maryland Governor Larry Hogan, former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and North Dakota Senator Kevin Cramer are among the most recent Republicans who have urged Trump to move on. Ron Klain, who is Biden’s choice as White House chief of staff, called on the General Services Administration to formally recognize Biden’s victory and unlock resources for the transition process. Meanwhile, the Trump campaign distance has apparently split from attorney Sidney Powell, whose recent public appearances have included incorrect statements about the voting process, baseless and wide-ranging conspiracy theories and a threat to “blow up” Georgia with a “biblical” court filing.

McMASTER WARNS AGAINST AFGHANISTAN WITHDRAWAL… President Trump’s former national security adviser H.R. McMaster warned yesterday that the Trump administration’s decision to withdraw troops from Afghanistan will empower the Taliban. The retired lieutenant general called the plan “abhorrent” The withdrawal of about 2,000 troops from Afghanistan would leave 2,500 U.S. troops in country. It was announced earlier this month after Trump fired Defense Secretary and named Christopher Miller as his replacement.

ARREST IN WISCONSIN MALL SHOOTINGS… Police in the Milwaukee suburb of Wauwatosa, Wisconsin, last night announced the arrest of a 15-year-old suspect in connection with Friday’s shootings that left eight people injured at a mall. Officers also found a firearm that the boy allegedly used during the incident, police said. Investigators say it appears the shootings were the result of a dispute between two groups rather than a random act. Authorities said four “innocent bystanders” suffered what were believed to be non-life threatening injuries.

ENTERTAINMENT
TAYLOR SWIFT WINS BIG AT AMA AWARDS
… Taylor Swift won Artist of the Year and Favorite Pop/Rock Female Artist at last night’s 2020 American Music Awards. Justin Bieber, Dan + Shay and the Weeknd were also three-time winners. The Weeknd’s wins included Favorite Soul/R&B Male Artist, Favorite Soul/R&B Album for “After Hours” and Favorite Soul/R&B Song for “Heartless.”

AC/DC TOPS ALBUM CHART… AC/DC’s “Power Up” sold 117,000 copies to debut atop the Billboard 200 albums chart. Future and Lil Uzi Vert’s “Pluto x Baby Pluto” opened in second place with 105,000 units sold. Chris Stapleton’s “Starting Over” debuted in third place on sales of 103,000 copies. Last week’s champ, Ariana Grande’s “Positions,” dropped to fourth place after selling 75,000 units. Pop Smoke’s “Shoot for the Stars Aim for the Moon” capped the top five with 53,000 copies sold.

SPORTS
NFL SCORES

NEW ORLEANS 24 – Atlanta 9
… Taysom Hill replaced the injured Drew Brees at quarterback and rushed for two touchdowns in leading the Saints (8-2) past the Falcons (3-7). Michael Thomas had nine catches for 104 yards.

WASHINGTON 20 – Cincinnati 9… Washington (3-7) rallied in the second half to get past the Bengals (2-7-1). Rookie running back Antonio Gibson ran for 94 yards and a score. The loss was especially painful for Cincinnati, which will be without rookie quarterback Joe Burrow for the rest of the season after he was carted off the field with a knee injury in the second quarter.

CAROLINA 20 – Detroit 0… The Panthers (4-6) recorded their first shutout since 2015 in blanking the Lions (4-7). P.J. Walker passed for 258 yards and a touchdown in his first NFL start. D.J. Moore had seven receptions for 127 yards.

CLEVELAND 22 – Philadelphia 17… Linebacker Sione Takitaki returned a second-quarter interception 50 yards to open the scoring and the Browns (7-3) held off the Eagles (3-6-1). Defensive end Olivier Vernon recorded three sacks of Philadelphia quarterback Carson Wentz, one of which went for a third-quarter safety.

Pittsburgh 27 – JACKSONVILLE 3… Terrell Edmunds and Minkah Fitzpatrick each had two interceptions as the Steelers (10-0) smothered the Jaguars (1-9). Ben Roethlisberger threw touchdown passes to Chase Claypool and Eric Ebron. Diontae Johnson had 12 catches for 111 yards.

HOUSTON 27 – New England 20… Deshaun Watson threw for two touchdowns and ran for another in the first half and the Texans (3-7) fought off the Patriots (4-6). Watson passed for 344 yards on the day.

Tennessee 30 – BALTIMORE 24 (OT)… Derrick Henry’s 29-yard touchdown run with 5:21 remaining in overtime lifted the Titans (7-3) over the Ravens (6-4). Henry finished with 133 yards on 28 carries. Ryan Tannehill had a pair of scoring tosses. Corey Davis finished with five receptions for 113 yards.

Dallas 31 – MINNESOTA 28… Andy Daulton’s 2-yard touchdown pass with 1:37 remaining sent the Cowboys (3-7) past the Vikings (4-6). Daulton also hit CeeDee Lamb and Ezekiel Elliott with scoring strikes. Elliott rushed for 103 yards.

DENVER 20 – Miami 13… Justin Simmons’ interception of a Ryan Fitzpatrick pass in the end zone with 1:03 left sealed the win as the Broncos (4-6) topped the Dolphins (6-4). Denver sacked Miami starting quarterback Tua Tagovailoa six times and knocked him out of the game earlier in the fourth quarter. Melvin Gordon rushed for a pair of touchdowns.

L.A. CHARGERS 34 – N.Y. Jets 28… Justin Herbert completed 37 of 49 passes for 366 yards and three touchdowns and the Chargers (3-7) handled the Jets (0-10). Keenan Allen hauled in a franchise-record 16 receptions for 145 yards and a score.

INDIANAPOLIS 34 – Green Bay 31 (OT)… The Colts (7-3) rallied from a 28-14 halftime deficit to outlast the Packers (7-3). Rodrigo Blankenship’s fourth field goal of the game came from 39 yards out with 7:10 to go in overtime. Philip Rivers threw touchdown passes to three different receivers.

Kansas City 35 – LAS VEGAS 31… Patrick Mahomes connected with Travis Kelce on a 22-yard touchdown pass with 28 seconds remaining to give the Chiefs (9-1) a last-minute win over the Raiders (6-4). Kelce finished with eight catches for 127 yards. Tyreek Hill had 11 receptions for 102 yards and a score. Clyde Edwards-Helaire ran for two TDs.

MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL
the L.A. Rams (6-3) are at Tampa Bay (7-3)

AP TOP 25 COLLEGE FOOTBALL RANKINGS… Alabama is the unanimous No. 1 in this week’s Associated Press college football poll. The Crimson Tide received all 62 first-place votes after beating Kentucky 63-3 on Saturday. The top eight teams in this week’s poll held their spots.

  1. Alabama
  2. Notre Dame
  3. Ohio State
  4. Clemson
  5. Texas A&M
  6. Florida
  7. Cincinnati
  8. BYU
  9. Miami
  10. Oregon
  11. Northwestern
  12. Indiana
  13. Georgia
  14. Oklahoma
  15. Iowa State
  16. Coastal Carolina
  17. Marshall
  18. Wisconsin
  19. USC
  20. Texas
  21. Oklahoma State
  22. Auburn
  23. Louisiana
  24. Tulsa
  25. North Carolina

The Rundown for November 20, 2020

CORONAVIRUS UPDATES… The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S. has reached 11,710,084 and the nation’s death toll stands at 252,484, according to figures released last night by Johns Hopkins University… The number of hospitalizations in the U.S. has jumped nearly 50 percent over the past two weeks… The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention yesterday urged Americans not to travel for the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday in order to limit the spread of COVID-19… California is imposing a limited Stay-at-Home Order that goes into effect tomorrow. Non-essential work and gatherings must stop from 10 p.m.-5 a.m. in 41 counties representing over 94 percent of the state’s population. The order ends on the morning of December 21.

BIDEN CHOOSES TREASURY SECRETARY… President-elect Joe Biden revealed yesterday that he has made his choice for treasury secretary. Biden also said he has discussed a possible nationwide mask mandate with state governors during a call. The president-elect said wearing a mask was “not a political statement, it’s a patriotic duty” during remarks after the call with both Republican and Democratic state governors. He also urged the federal government to deliver financial relief to states so they can tackle the virus.

RECOUNT CONFIRMS BIDEN WIN IN GEORGIA… The recount of ballots in Georgia’s presidential race has confirmed Joe Biden beat President Trump by 12,284 votes and found no widespread fraud. Officials in the state are scheduled to certify the results by the end of the day. Trump’s reelection campaign yesterday dropped its bid to challenge Biden’s victory in Michigan. Instead, Trump has invited state Republican leaders to a meeting at the White House today. The Trump campaign also had lawsuits tossed in Maricopa County, Arizona, and Bucks County, Pennsylvania.

SCHUMER SAYS McCONNELL AGRESS TO NEGOTIATE… Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said yesterday that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has agreed to resume negotiations over a potential new Covid-19 relief bill. Congressional aides on both sides, however, warn that Schumer might have been overly optimistic. Democrats and Republicans are seeking to avoid a government shutdown on December 11.

742K NEW UNEMPLOYMENT FILINGS… Another 742,000 U.S. workers have filed for new unemployment benefits, according to figures released by the Labor Department. The number reflected an increase of 31,000 from the previous week and brought the unemployment rate at 4.3 percent. Most economists expected about 700,000 new claims. There are almost 6.4 million continuing claims, the report said.

ENTERTAINMENT
NBC’S CHRISTMAS SPECIAL FILLS OUT LINEUP
… Kelly Clarkson and Gwen Stefani have joined the list of performers on NBC’s 2020 Christmas in Rockefeller Center special. The network says Clarkson will perform with Brett Eldredge. Other performers include The Goo Goo Dolls, Meghan Trainor and Earth, Wind & Fire, Dolly Parton and the Radio City Rockettes. The special will air on December 2 at 8 p.m. Eastern.

BOBBY BROWN JR. FOUND DEAD… Police have confirmed that the son of R&B singer Bobby Brown was found dead in his Los Angeles home on Wednesday, police have confirmed. Police say there is no sign of four play in the death of 28-year-old Bobby Brown Jr. Officers responded to residence following the report of a “medical emergency.” Brown was the stepson of the late Whitney Houston.

SPORTS
NFL SCORE

SEATTLE 28 – Arizona 21
… Russell Wilson threw first-half touchdown passes to DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett and the Seahawks (7-3) held off the Cardinals (6-4). Carlos Hyde ran 2 yards for a third-quarter score.

SUNDAY’S NFL SCHEDULE
New England (4-5) is at Houston (2-7)…
New Orleans (7-2) hosts Atlanta (3-6)…
Tennessee (6-3) is at Baltimore (6-3)…
Washington (2-7) hosts Cincinnati (2-6-1)…
Pittsburgh (9-0) is at Jacksonville (1-8)…
Carolina (3-7) hosts Detroit (4-5)…
Philadelphia (3-5-1) is at Cleveland (6-3)…
Denver (3-6) hosts Miami (6-3)…
the N.Y. Jets (0-9) are at the L.A. Chargers (2-7)…
Minnesota (4-5) hosts Dallas (2-7)…
Green Bay (7-2) is at Indianapolis (6-3)…
Las Vegas (6-3) hosts Kansas City (8-1)

MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL
the L.A. Rams (6-3) are at Tampa Bay (7-3)

TOP 25 COLLEGE FOOTBALL SCORE
No. 25 Tulsa 30, Tulane 24 (2OT)

NBA NEWS… The Golden State Warriors announced yesterday that guard Klay Thompson has suffered a torn Achilles tendon and will miss the 2020-21 season. Thompson suffered the injury during a workout on Wednesday. The 30-year-old Thompson missed the entire 2019-20 season after tearing the ACL in his left knee during the 2018-19 NBA Finals.

The Rundown for November 17, 2020

CORONAVIRUS UPDATES… The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S. has reached 11,036,935 and the nation’s death toll stands at 246,214, according to figures released last night by Johns Hopkins University… A second coronavirus vaccine in the U.S. has shown to have a high success rate. Moderna’s mRNA-1273 vaccine was 94.5 percent effective in preventing COVID-19 infection, according to interim data from a late-stage trial published yesterday. Last week, Pfizer announced that early data showed its vaccine is more than 90 percent effective… California governor Gavin Newsom announced yesterday that his state is “pulling the emergency brake” in moving 28 counties accounting for 94 percent of the state’s population back into the most restrictive purple tier. The move comes after the number of cases doubled over the past 10 days. Total hospitalizations and cases in intensive care units have shot up 48 and 39 percent, respectively, over the past two weeks.

TRUMP, ALLIES DROP SUITS… Voters in four states who had filed suit challenging Joe Biden’s win in the presidential election dropped their cases yesterday morning. Suits filed in Georgia, Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania federal courts were all backed by the law firm of a nationally known conservative attorney, James Bopp Jr. On Friday, a federal appellate court ruled that voters couldn’t bring some constitutional claims. Trump has refused to concede the election and continues to make false claims of widespread voter fraud with no evidence. His campaign and GOP allies have posted just a minor win in Pennsylvania among the 25 post-election lawsuits they have filed. The Trump campaign will be back in court today trying to overturn Biden’s victory in Pennsylvania. The campaign unsuccessfully argued to delay the trial yesterday after three of four attorneys on the team quit. Two previous sets of Trump lawyers stepped away from the case over the past week.

GEORGIA SEC OF STATE SAYS REPUBLICANS APPLIED PRESSURE OVER VOTING… Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger told the Washington Post that Republican lawmakers have pressured him to discredit absentee ballot votes in the state following Joe Biden’s victory there. Raffensperger said South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham was among those applying pressure. Graham allegedly questioned Georgia’s signature-matching law and suggested that Raffensperger find a way to toss out legal ballots.

BIDEN, HARRIS TALK ECONOMIC RECOVERY… President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris met with business and labor leaders yesterday before before publicly presenting their plans for managing the economy. During a speech in Delaware, Biden stressed the importance of harnessing the coronavirus pandemic, developing a fair tax structure and buying U.S.-made products. He warned of dire consequences if the Trump administration continues its refusal to coordinate with Biden’s transition team on the coronavirus pandemic and block briefings on national security, policy issues and vaccine plans. Harris stressed the impact of the pandemic on the economy.

HATE-CRIME MURDERS SPIKE… Annual data released yesterday by the FBI showed that hate-crime murders surged to a record high in 2019 and overall hate crime incidents also rose. Studies found 51 people were the victims of murder or non-negligent manslaughter motivated by hate in 2019, far surpassing the 24 people killed the year before. 2018 had already been the deadliest year on record for victims of hate crimes since the FBI began tracking the data in the early 1990s, according to the Anti-Defamation League.

CREW DOCKS AT SPACE STATION… The SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft delivered four astronauts to the International Space Station last night. The spacecraft docked at approximately 11:15 p.m. Eastern after launching from Florida’s Kennedy Space Center 27 hours earlier. NASA astronauts Michael Hopkins, Victor Glover and Shannon Walker arrived on the mission, as did Soichi Noguchi from Japan’s space agency. The crew is expected to spend about six months working on a variety of science experiments and conducting space walks to continue updates and repairs on the space station’s exterior.

ENTERTAINMENT
SINBAD RECOVERING FROM STOKE
… Comedian and actor Sinbad is recovering from a recent stroke, family members revealed yesterday. The condition of the 64-year-old entertainer was not disclosed. Sinbad is best known for his stand-up comedy specials, as well as his work on the TV sitcom “A Different World” and in films that include “Houseguest.”

2 DANCERS ELIMINATED… Olympic figure skater Johnny Weir and actress Skai Jackson were eliminated during last night’s “Dancing with the Stars” semi-finals. Weir had been partnered with pro dancer Britt Stewart for Season 29 of the competition series. Jackson danced with Alan Bersten. Actress Justina Machado, reality TV stars Nev Schulman and Kaitlyn Bristowe, and rapper Nelly have advance to next week’s finals.

SPORTS
MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL

Minnesota 19 – CHICAGO 13
… Kirk Cousins’ second touchdown pass to Adam Thielan came from 4 yards out and broke a fourth-quarter tie in carrying the Vikings (4-5) past the Bears (5-5). Cousins found Thielan with a 17-yard scoring toss in the first quarter. Justin Jefferson had eight receptions for 135 yards. Chicago led most of the third quarter after Cordarrelle Patterson returned the second-half kickoff 104 yards for a TD.

NFL NEWS… The New Orleans Saints are expected to be without quarterback Drew Brees indefinitely as he recovers from multiple rib fractures and a collapsed lung. Brees suffered two fractured ribs and the collapsed lung on his right side in Sunday’s win over the San Francisco 49ers and sustained three fractured left ribs in the previous week’s defeat of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

NBA NEWS… The Phoenix Suns have acquired All-Star guard Chris Paul in a blockbuster trade with the Oklahoma City Thunder. The deal brings Paul and Abdel Nader to Phoenix in exchange for Kelly Oubre Jr., Ricky Rubio, Ty Jerome, Jalen Lecque and a 2022 first-round pick. The 35-year-old Paul will be reunited with Suns coach Monty Williams, who coached the point guard for one season in New Orleans… ESPN reported that the New Orleans Pelicans were nearing completion of a deal to send guard Jrue Holiday to the Milwaukee Bucks in exchange for Eric Bledsoe, George Hill and “significant” draft compensation.

MLB NEWS… The San Diego Padres announced yesterday that pitcher Mike Clevinger is scheduled to undergo Tommy John surgery today and will miss the 2021 season. The announcement came after the team reached agreement with the righthander on a two-year, $11.5 million contract extension. San Diego acquired Clevinger from Cleveland on August 31, but he left with a sore elbow in his final start of the regular season and was not available for the playoffs.

The Rundown for November 16, 2020

CORONAVIRUS UPDATES… The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S. has reached 11,036,935 and the nation’s death toll stands at 246,214, according to figures released last night by Johns Hopkins University… The nation’s leading infectious-disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, said during an appearance on CNN’s “Face the Nation” yesterday that efforts to combat the pandemic in the U.S. will be limited until health officials are allowed to work with President-elect Joe Biden’s team. President Trump has not cooperated while contesting election results… The governors of Michigan and Washington have announced new restrictions amid the outbreak. Beginning Wednesday, Michigan will ban indoor dining at restaurants, in-person instruction at high schools and colleges, and gatherings of over two households for at least three weeks. Washington has instituted new restrictions on gatherings that will remain in effect through December 14.

TRUMP ACKNOWLEDGES LOSS… President Trump yesterday went on Twitter to offer his first acknowledgement that he lost the presidential election to Joe Biden but reiterated his false claims that the vote was rigged. Trump has yet to concede the election despite Biden claiming 36 Electoral College votes more than he needed to win the presidency. Trump’s campaign yesterday dropped a major part of a lawsuit it brought seeking to stop Pennsylvania from certifying its results. Pennsylvania officials have asked a judge to toss Trump’s lawsuit due to its false claims. President-elect Biden’s incoming chief of staff Ron Klain urged the federal government yesterday to sign off on the transition team efforts to receive national security briefings and address COVID-19.

ASTRONAUTS LAUNCHED TO ISS… A team of four astronauts aboard the Crew Dragon capsule powered by SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket launched last night for a six-month stay on the International Space Station. The astronauts include Victor Glover, the first Black extended crew member on the ISS. The crew is expected to arrive on the ISS tonight and join three other astronauts.

STORM PUMMELS MIDWEST, NORTHEAST… High winds and rain pounded the Midwest and Northeast yesterday. The storm that formed Saturday over the Great Plains is blamed for power outages affecting 750,000 customers as of yesterday. Forecasters expect and flooding along the shores of the Great Lakes. Buffalo, New York; Michigan City, Indiana; and Benton Harbor, Michigan, were expected to be among hardest-hit areas.

BOY SCOUT ABUSE CLAIMS TOP 81K… The New York Times reports that more than 81,500 people have come forward claiming they were sexually abused while they were involved with the Boy Scouts of America over the past few decades. Claims have been pouring in ahead of today’s deadline by a Delaware bankruptcy court, where the Boy Scouts initiated a Chapter 11 filing earlier this year. The national organization claims it seeks a process where survivors could receive compensation. Lawyers working on the claims say the number eclipses the sexual abuse and molestation accusations filed against the Catholic Church.

ENTERTAINMENT
ARIANA GRANDE REMAINS ATOP ALBUM CHART
… Ariana Grande’s ‘Positions” sold 82,000 copies to remain atop the Billboard 200 album chart. Pop Smoke’s “Shoot for the Stars, Aim for the Moon” jumped into second place after selling 57,000 units. The Kid Laroi’s “F*ck Love” finished in third place on sales of 52,000 copies. Luke Combs’ “What You See Is What You Get” stayed at No. 4 with 46,000 units sold. King Von’s “Welcome to O’Block” capped the top five with sales of 44,000 copies.

STALLONE JOINS ‘SUICIDE SQUAD’ CAST… Director James Gunn has confirmed that Sylvester Stallone is joining the cast of “Suicide Squad.” Gunn also said cast additions would include Idris Elba. Returning castmembers include Margot Robbie, Jai Courtney, Joel Kinnaman and Viola Davis. The next installment in the franchise is scheduled for a 2021 release.

SPORTS
NFL SCORES

DETROIT 30 – Washington 27
… Matt Prater’s 59-yard field goal as time expired lifted the Lions (4-5) over Washington (2-7). Matthew Stafford threw touchdown passes to three different receivers.

GREEN BAY 24 – Jacksonville 20… Aaron Rodgers had two touchdown passes and ran for a score as the Packers (7-2) held off the Jaguars (1-8). Marquez Faldes-Scantling had four receptions for 149 yards and a score.

Tampa Bay 46 – CAROLINA 23…. Tom Brady passed for 341 yards and three touchdown in leading the Buccaneers (7-3) in their rout of the Panthers (3-7). Ronald Jones ran 98 yards for a score.

N.Y. GIANTS 27 – Philadelphia 17…Wayne Gallman Jr. scored on a pair of touchdown runs to help the Giants (3-7) grind out a win over the Eagles (3-5-1). Daniel Jones threw for 244 yards and ran for a score.

CLEVELAND 10 – Houston 7… The Browns (6-3) overcame wild weather in Cleveland to hold off the Texans (2-7). Nick Chubb rushed for 126 yards and a fourth-quarter touchdown. Kareem Hunt added 104 rushing yards.

ARIZONA 32 – Buffalo 30… Kyler Murray connected with DeAndre Hopkins with a desperation 49-yard touchdown pass on the game’s final play to send the Cardinals (6-3) past the Bills (7-3). Murray ran for two scores. Hopkins finished with seven catches for 127 yards.

MIAMI 29 – L.A. Chargers 21… The Dolphins (6-3) fought their way past the Chargers (2-7) for their fifth straight win. Tua Tagovailoa threw two touchdown passes.

LAS VEGAS 37 – Denver 12… The Raiders (6-3) made it three straight wins by rolling past the Broncos (3-6). Josh Jacobs ran for 112 yards and two touchdowns. Devontae Booker added two scoring runs. Defensively, Oakland forced five turnovers.

NEW ORLEANS 27 – San Francisco 13… The Saints (7-2) handled the 49ers (4-6) despite playing the second half without injured quarterback Drew Brees. Alvin Kamara ran for two scores and had a touchdown reception.

L.A. RAMS 23 – Seattle 16… The Rams (6-3) got a pair of touchdown runs from Malcolm Brown and another from Darrell Henderson in fighting off the Seahawks (6-3). Jared Goff passed for 305 yards. Darious Williams intercepted two Russell Wilson passes.

PITTSBURGH 36 – Cincinnati 10… Ben Roethlisberger passed for 344 yards and four touchdowns in leading the Steelers (9-0) past the Bengals (2-6-1). Chase Claypool had two TD catches. Diontae Johnson had six receptions for 116 yards and a score.

NEW ENGLAND 23 – Baltimore 17… The Patriots (4-5) surprised the Ravens (6-3) in a contest played among high wind and rain in Foxborough. Cam Newton threw for a score and ran for another. Damien Harris rushed for 121 yards.

MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL
Minnesota (3-5) is at Chicago (5-4)

COLLEGE FOOTBALL NEWS… The University of South Carolina has fired football coach Will Muschamp. His dismissal comes after three straight losses have dropped the Gamecocks to 2-5 on the season. Muschamp was in his fifth season at South Carolina. His teams went 28-30 overall.

DUSTIN JOHNSON WINS MASTERS… Dustin Johnson shot a 4-under 68 yesterday to win his first Masters title by five strokes. His 268 72-hole total broke the Masters record of 270 set by Tiger Woods in 1997. Australian Cameron Smith and South Korea’s Sungjae Im finished five strokes off the lead.

The Rundown for November 13, 2020

CORONAVIRUS UPDATES… The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S. has reached 10,526,906 and the nation’s death toll stands at 242,621, according to figures released last night by Johns Hopkins University. There were 89,206 new cases and 400 deaths yesterday, with more states reporting record highs in daily cases. California has joined Texas as states with at least 1 million cases… Wearing a face mask doesn’t just protect other people from potentially getting infected with the coronavirus, it protects you too, according to updated guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention… Chicago mayor Lori Lightfoot has issued a stay-at-home advisory and Detroit stopped in-person schooling yesterday to combat outbreaks.

DEMS WANT TRUMP CONCESSION… Pressure is mounting on President Trump to concede the 2020 presidential election. Democratic leaders Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer yesterday called on Republicans to accept the election results so Congress can focus on passing a new coronavirus stimulus package. John Cornyn, Ron Johnson, James Lankford, Chuck Grassley and Lindsey Graham are among a growing number of Republican senators who are urging the Trump’ administration to allow President-Elect Joe Biden access to presidential daily intelligence briefings. Trump has been unsuccessfully challenging the outcome in courts, where his team is 0-12 in pressing its claims of widespread voter fraud. Biden has surpassed the 270 Electoral College votes required to become president and his lead in the popular vote has grown to more than 5.2 million votes. The Department of Homeland Security hit back at Trump’s voter-fraud claims yesterday with a strongly worded statement issued jointly by two committees. “There is no evidence that any voting system deleted or lost votes, changed votes, or was in any way compromised,” the statement noted. CNN and NBC declared Biden the winner in Arizona last night, raising his Electoral College total to 290.

TURNOVER CONTINUES AT DHS… The continuing turnover atop the Department of Homeland Security continues to alarm defense analysts. Yesterday, Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency Assistant Director Bryan Ware and DHS Assistant Secretary International Affairs Valerie Boyd both resigned. CISA’s director, Christopher Krebs, expects to be fired, according to Reuters.

5 AMERICANS KILLED ON PEACEKEEPING MISSION… Five Americans were among seven international peacekeepers killed when their helicopter crashed in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula yesterday. The crash also left one American peacekeeper injured. The cause “appears to be mechanical in nature,” officials said. The peacekeepers are part of the international mission that oversees the enforcement of the 1978 peace treaty between Egypt and Israel.

ETA RETURNS… Eta returned to the U.S. as a tropical storm yesterday morning near Cedar Key, Florida, before turning north and bringing heavy rain and dangerous flooding to the Carolinas and Virginia. The storm is blamed for the deaths of at least six people, including five in North Carolina. Flash flood warnings remain in effect across a large portion of North Carolina with flash flood watches in effect along the mid-Atlantic coast, from South Carolina to Virginia.

ENTERTAINMENT
THE WEEKND TO PERFORM AT SUPER BOWL HALFTIME
… Grammy-winning singer The Weeknd has been chosen as the halftime performer at Super Bowl 55. The game is scheduled for February 7 in Tampa, Florida, and will air on CBS. In making the announcement yesterday, the NFL called the singer “one of today’s most compelling and significant artists of a generation.” Jennifer Lopez and Shakira headlined last year’s halftime show.

VetsAid LINEUP GROWS… Gwen Stefani, her fiance Blake Shelton, Eddie Vedder of Pearl Jam, Jon Bon Jovi and other performers have signed on to appear during the virtual VetsAid festival from Joe Walsh. VetsAid 2020: Home for the Holidays is scheduled for December 12. Other performers include Ryan Bingham, Alice Cooper, Kenny ‘Babyface’ Edmonds, Vince Gill, James Hetfield and Tim McGraw.

SPORTS
NFL SCORE

Indianapolis 34 – TENNESSEE 17
… The Colts (6-3) scored 21 unanswered points in the second half to roll past the Titans (6-3). Nyheim Hines caught a Philip Rivers touchdown pass and ran for a score. Rivers completed 29 of 39 passes for 308 yards. Michael Pittman Jr. had seven receptions for 101 yards.

SUNDAY’S NFL SCHEDULE
Washington (2-6) is at Detroit (3-5)…
Green Bay (6-2) hosts Jacksonville (1-7)…
Tampa Bay (6-3) is at Carolina (3-6)….
the N.Y. Giants (2-7) host Philadelphia (3-4-1)…
Houston (2-6) is at Cleveland (5-3)…
Arizona (5-3) hosts Buffalo (7-2)…
the L.A. Chargers (2-6) are at Miami (5-3)…
Las Vegas (5-3) hosts Denver (3-5)…
San Francisco (4-5) is at New Orleans (6-2)…
the L.A. Rams (5-3) host Seattle (6-2)…
Cincinnati (2-5-1) is at Pittsburgh (8-0)…
New England (3-5) hosts Baltimore (6-2)

MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL
Minnesota (3-5) is at Chicago (5-4)

JOSE ABREU NAMED AL MVP… Chicago White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu has been named 2020 American League Most Valuable Player. The 33-year-old Abreu becomes the first White Sox player to win the award since Frank Thomas in 1994. He also becomes the oldest AL MVP since 38-year-old Dennis Eckersley won the award in 1992. Abreu played in all 60 regular-season games and led the AL with 76 hits and 60 RBIs. His 19 homers were second in the league behind Luke Voit’s 22 for the New York Yankees.

IVY LEAGUE CANCELS WINTERS SPORTS… The Ivy League announced yesterday that it has cancelled winter sports, including basketball, for the 2020-21 season. The decision to become the first Division I conference not to participate in winter sports came after days of talks among conference presidents. The basketball season was to start in 12 days.

THE MASTERS UNDERWAY… Wet conditions led to more than two dozen golfers posting under-par scores on yesterday’s first round of the 2020 Masters. Play was delayed three hours by rain and some golfers will be finishing their first rounds this morning. Paul Casey leads the field at 7 under after posting a bogey-free 65. Xander Schauffele, Justin Thomas and Webb Simpson follow at 5 under.

The Rundown for November 10, 2020

CORONAVIRUS UPDATES… The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S. has reached 10,110,922 and the nation’s death toll stands at 238,235, according to figures released last night by Johns Hopkins University… Drug maker Pfizer announced yesterday that the coronavirus vaccine it developed with the German drugmaker BioNTech appears to be able to prevent more than 90 percent of people from getting COVID-19. No serious safety concerns have been observed during tests on 43,500 people in six countries, Pfizer added. The company plans to ask the Food and Drug Administration for emergency authorization and hopes to manufacture enough doses to immunize 15 to 20 million people by the end of the year.

TRUMP FIRES DEFENSE CHIEF, CLIMATE SCIENTIST… President Trump announced yesterday that he fired Mark Esper as his defense secretary. Insiders say the move was the result of Trump questioning the Pentagon’s loyalty following his loss in the presidential election. Traditionally, losing presidents have kept their Pentagon chiefs in place until Inauguration Day to preserve stability in the name of national security. Director of the National Counterterrorism Center Christopher Miller has been named acting Defense Department secretary. In another departure, Michael Kuperberg has been removed as director of the U.S. Global Change Research Program. Kuperberg oversaw the 2018 National Climate Assessment, which made it clear that climate change is a devastating threat to the U.S. and warned of its destructive economic impact.

BARR ALLOWS DOJ TO EXAMINE VOTING ALLEGATIONS… Attorney General William Barr is allowing federal prosecutors to examine allegations of voting irregularities before states move to certify results in the coming weeks. However, Barr urged investigators not to pursue “fanciful or far fetched claims.” Despite a lack of evidence, President Trump blames voting irregularities for his loss in last Tuesday’s election and has refused to concede defeat to President-elect Joe Biden. Barr’s memo authorizing an investigation prompted the resignation of Richard Pilger, who directs the Election Crimes Branch at the Department of Justice.

GEORGIA SENATORS ATTACK SECRETARY OF STATE… Georgia’s Republican Senators Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue have called on the state’s Republican Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to resign. The two senators cited failures in Georgia’s election process without citing specific examples. Raffensperger vowed the he would not resign and declared Georgia’s election a “resounding success,” citing low wait times and high turnout. Loeffler and Perdue will go into January 5 runoff elections against their respective Democratic challengers Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff.

ETA FLOODS SOUTH FLORIDA… Tropical Storm Eta brought torrential rain to South Florida yesterday before moving into the Gulf of Mexico, where it is expected to strengthen into a Category 1 hurricane. There was widespread flooding amid a forecast of up to 18 inches of rain around Miami and Fort Lauderdale. Forecasters say the storm could make a second landfall along the northern Gulf Coast of Florida late Friday into early Saturday.

ENTERTAINMENT
NETFLIX ANNOUNCES KEVIN HART SPECIAL
… Netflix announced plans to air a new Kevin Hart comedy special. “Kevin Hart: Zero [Expletive] Given” is scheduled to premiere on November 17. Hart filmed the show on September 20 in Los Angeles. Hart’s last standup special on Netflix, “Kevin Hart: Irresponsible,” premiered April 2. Hart also starred in the Netflix docuseries “Kevin Hart: Don’t [Expletive] This Up” last year.

TYLER HUBBARD TESTS POSITIVE FOR COVID… Florida Georgia Line lead singer Tyler Hubbard announced on social media yesterday that he has tested positive for COVID-19. Hubbard said he has been quarantining on his tour bus outside of his home in Nashville. He noted that he’s not experiencing any symptoms of the virus. Hubbard has been removed as a performer at tomorrow’s 2020 Country Music Association Awards. Florida Georgia Line is nominated for vocal duo of the year. Hubbard is the second singer to pull out of the show due to COVID-19, following Lee Brice.

SPORTS
MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL

New England 30 – N.Y. JETS 27
… The Patriots (3-5) scored 13 unanswered points in the fourth quarter to rally past the Jets (0-9). Nick Folk booted a game-winning 51-yard field goal as time expired. Cam Newton had a pair of short touchdown runs.

MLB NEWS… Seattle Mariners center fielder Kyle Lewis was named the American League Rookie of the Year last night. The 25-year-old Lewis received all 30 first-place votes in balloting by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America. He batted .262 with 11 homers and 28 RBIs in 58 games.

The Rundown for November 9, 2020

CORONAVIRUS UPDATES… The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S. has reached 9,962,900 and the nation’s death toll stands at 237,567, according to figures released last night by Johns Hopkins University… The nation added 127,399 cases yesterday, topping 100,000 new infections for the fourth consecutive day. The death toll rose by more than 1,000 for the fifth consecutive day as 1,040 new fatalities were reported.

PRESIDENTIAL RACE IN FOUR STATES TOO CLOSE TO CALL… Even after former Vice President Joe Biden has secured enough electoral votes to win the presidency, races in Georgia, North Carolina, Arizona and Alaska remained too close to call yesterday as votes were still being counted. Biden has secured nine more electoral votes than the 270 required to become president. Former President George W. Bush yesterday congratulated Biden on his win.

BIDEN GEARING UP FOR PRESIDENCY… President-elect Joe Biden is scheduled to announce his 12-member pandemic task force today. The coronavirus task force will develop a blueprint for containing the disease once Biden takes office in January. It will be headed by three co-chairs, former surgeon general Vivek Murthy, former Food and Drug Administration commissioner David Kessler, and Dr. Marcella Nunez-Smith of Yale University. While prioritizing containment of the pandemic, Biden is reportedly preparing to take quick action elsewhere. Yesterday, his campaign adviser Symone Sanders vowed that the president elect, is “going to make good on his promises” made on the campaign trail.” Biden has promised to rejoin the Paris climate accord and the World Health Organization, repeal Trump’s ban on travel from some Muslim-majority countries and reinstate the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.

CREWS CONTINUE OIL-SPILL CLEANUP… Crews continue their efforts to clean up an oil spill that spans the Delaware and Maryland coastlines. The spill was detected October 19 at Delaware’s Broadkill Beach and was spread by tidal action. An estimated 75 tons of oily sand and debris have been removed from coastal areas. The source of the spill has not been determined.

ETA ARRIVES… Tropical storm Eta carried maximum winds of 65 mph as it made landfall in the Florida Keys last night. Officials in Florida had braced for a storm that could hit at hurricane force. In Florida, governor Ron DeSantis declared a state of emergency Saturday for eight counties and urged residents to stock up on supplies. Miami-Dade county declared a state of emergency Friday night and also warned a flood watch would be in effect through tomorrow night.

ENTERTAINMENT
ALEX TREBEK DIES
… Alex Trebek, who of the gameshow “Jeopardy!” since its 1984 debut in syndication, died yesterday of pancreatic cancer. He was 80. Trebek revealed his diagnosis in March 2019. “Jeopardy!” episodes hosted by Trebek will air through Christmas Day. Trebek’s last day in the studio was October 29. Trebek won five Daytime Emmy Awards for outstanding game show host. In 2011, he received a Peabody Award for “encouraging, celebrating and rewarding knowledge.” Trebek hosted more than 8,200 “Jeopardy!” episodes over the course of 37 seasons.

ARIANA GRANDE TOPS ALBUM CHART… Ariana Grande’s new release, “Positions,” sold 174,000 copies to give her a fifth No. 1 on the Billboard 200 album chart. Trippie Redd’s “Pegasus” debuted in second place on sales of 60,000 units. Pop Smoke’s “Shoot for the Stars, Aim for the Moon” sold 60,000 copies to remain in third place. Last week’s champ, Luke Combs’ “What You See Is What You Get” dropped to No. 4 after selling 52,000 units. Sam Smith’s “Love Goes” debuted at No. 5 with 41,000 copies sold.

SPORTS
NFL SCORES

MINNESOTA 34 – Detroit 20
… Dalvin Cook rushed for 206 yards and two touchdowns to lead the ground game and the Vikings (3-5) rolled past the Lions (3-5). Kirk Cousins found Irv Smith with two of his three touchdown passes.

KANSAS CITY 33 – Carolina 31… Patrick Mahomes passed for four touchdown passes as the Chief s (8-1) held off the Panthers (3-6). Tyreek Hill had nine catches for 113 yards and two scores. Travis Kelce caught 10 passes for 159 yards.

Baltimore 24 – INDIANAPOLIS 10… The Ravens (6-2) came alive in the second half to top the Colts (5-3). Gus Edwards and Lamar Jackson ran for second-half touchdowns.

BUFFALO 44 – Seattle 34… Josh Allen completed 31 of 38 passes for 415 yards and threw touchdowns in leading the Bills (7-2) past the Seahawks (6-2). Stefon Diggs had nine receptions for 118 yards.

TENNESSEE 24 – Chicago 17… The Titans (6-2) withstood a fourth-quarter rally to down the Bears (5-4). Ryan Tannehill threw touchdowns to A.J. Brown and Jonnu Smith. Desmond King returned a fumble 63 yards for a score.

ATLANTA 34 – Denver 27… Matt Ryan threw touchdown passes to three different receivers as the Falcons (3-6) held off the Broncos (3-5) for their third win in four games. Olamide Zaccheaus had four receptions for 103 yards and a score.

Houston 27 – JACKSONVILLE 25… The Texans (2-6) held on at the end to hand the Jaguars (1-7) their seventh straight loss. Deshaun Harris threw 57- and 77-yard touchdown passes.

N.Y. Giants 23 – WASHINGTON 20… Logan Ryan’s interception of an Alex Smith pass late in the fourth quarter preserved the Giants’ (2-7) win over Washington 2-6. Daniel Jones hit Evan Engram with a 16-yard third-quarter touchdown pass. Wayne Gallman ran for a score.

Las Vegas 31 – L.A. CHARGERS 26… Derek Carr had two touchdown tosses and the Raiders (5-3) got touchdown runs from Devontae Booker and Josh Jacobs in topping the Chargers (2-6). It was a heartbreaking loss for L.A., as Justin Herbert’s 4-yard TD pass to Donald Parham Jr. on the final play was overturned after a replay review.

Miami 34 – ARIZONA 31… Tua Tagovailoa passed for yards and two touchdown in his first NFL start and the Dolphins (5-3) rallied past the Cardinals (5-3) in the fourth quarter. Jason Sanders’ 50-yard field goal with 3:50 remaining was the difference.

Pittsburgh 24 – DALLAS 19… The Steelers (8-0) scored 15 unanswered points in the fourth quarter to upend the Cowboys (2-7). Ben Roethlisberger threw three touchdown passes.

New Orleans 38 – TAMPA BAY 3… Drew Brees hit four different receivers with touchdown passes and the Saints (6-2) throttled the Buccaneers (6-3). Defensively, New Orleans intercepted Tom Brady three times.

MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL
New England (2-5) is at the N.Y. Jets (0-8)