Mystery Team May or May Not Have Deal in Place with 49ers for Quarterback Alex Smith

Mystery Team May or May Not Have Deal in Place with 49ers for Quarterback Alex Smith

In news with implications that could count twofold for some
Eagles fans, there are currently a set of conflicting rumors around the San
Francisco 49ers and their coveted property, quarterback Alex Smith.’s Jason La Canfora reported on Sunday (via
Deadspin) that a trade for Smith is “effectively complete,” although a swap
cannot be finalized until the new league year begins on March 12, and which
team has allegedly agreed to deal is unknown. On the other hand, Matt Barrows
of the Sacramento Bee (via ProFootballTalk) indicates it’s all posturing from San
Francisco’s end.'s Adam Schefter chimed in on Monday, painting San Francisco as confident a trade will take place at some point.

We have to agree with PFT’s take on this one, which is without
Smith’s destination being named, it’s hard to regard the report he’s all-but-traded
as definite. Perhaps the 49ers are trying to drum up the price. For his part, La Canfora has not revised his story.

But it is sort of interesting from a Philadelphia
perspective. The likeliest landing spot for Smith might be the Kansas City
Chiefs, who are confirmed to be looking for a QB, and in turn have already inquired
about Nick Foles.
If Foles were to be dealt – not believed to be happening at
this point – Kansas City makes the most sense because Andy Reid would probably
be willing to give up the most.

Obviously if Kansas City can be linked to Smith in any way,
that could drive Foles’ value down. Foles could also be the Chiefs’ leverage on
the Niners, or Plan B if they are unable to pry the first-overall pick of 2005
away from San Fran at their price.

Of course, there are plenty of fans who wouldn’t mind seeing
the Eagles make a play for Smith themselves. Given what the 49ers will be
asking for, and Smith’s up-and-mostly-down career, I’m not sure the Birds should
have any serious interest in the soon-to-be 29 year old – and by all
appearances, they have none.

The story is worth following to see what develops though,
because the far-reaching impact of a trade could potentially be felt here. The
49ers will almost certainly wind up moving Smith this offseason one way or the
other due to the ascension of Colin Kapernick to starter.

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The Sixers are for real (and Sam Hinkie had nothing to do with it)

The Sixers are for real (and Sam Hinkie had nothing to do with it)

The biggest sports story in town in the Sixers, winners of 4 of 5 and an exhilarating team on the floor, led by a superstar player who seems to actually get us as a fan base. And to think, all it took to bring us to this point was getting rid of Sam Hinkie.

Look at what a dark place the Sixers were in a year ago. They were in last place, with the league’s worst roster and no hope for the future except for a bunch of ill-defined future draft picks. And they were led by a general manager with absolutely zero interest in winning, explaining himself, or (worst of all) appearing on the WIP Morning Show. 

But now, there’s hope. Joel Embiid is the real deal. The supporting cast is rapidly improving, with guys like T.J. McConnell, Robert Covington and Dario Saric looking like valuable supporting players, and Ben Simmons joining them very soon. 

I know the Hinkie apologists are going to say these improvements are because of him and that he deserves credit -- please. To credit Hinkie with drafting Joel Embiid is the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard of in all my years of watching Philadelphia sports. We all know Hinkie wanted Andrew Wiggins -- therefore, he gets no credit for drafting Embiid. And as Bob Brookover pointed out last week, Embiid is a Sixer because of luck.  

Ben Simmons, of course, was drafted by Bryan Colangelo, who also acquired the best Sixer since Thaddeus Young, Ersan Ilyasova. And if the two first-round picks next year turn out to be stars, Colangelo will get credit for those, too

Hinkie did things like draft three centers in a  row, take Jahlil Okafor over Kristaps Porzingis, trade valuable players like Michael Carter-Williams and K.J. McDaniels for nothing, and sign no veterans at all for three years. 

Joel Embiid is a winner, Sam Hinkie is a loser, and that’s all there is to it.  

In other Sixers news, it was nice to see Simmons warming up on the court last week against Boston- when Embiid did that, it meant he was 16-18 months away from returning to action. In the last two years, the Sixers lead the league in pre-game social media posts featuring players who aren’t active for that night’s game. 

And speaking of records, congrats to Nerlens Noel for breaking Shane Victorino’s longstanding local athlete record for use of “you know” in a single interview, when he talked to Woj last week

Other Philly sports takes: 

The Cowboys’ loss to the Packers on Sunday proves two things: Dak Prescott is a fraud, and the Cowboys were never very good anyway. The only reason they went 13-3 was the easy schedule. 

Can you believe Allen Iverson getting photographed in a Cowboys jersey? Doesn’t he know the rules? If you play in Philly, you must root for every one of the city’s teams, regardless of circumstance, for the rest of your life. 

Even so, shame on the Knicks’ Derrick Rose for no-showing a game. If you want to be a legendary NBA guard, you’re supposed to skip PRACTICES, not games. Not a game. 

Angelo made a good point: Embiid is so perfect as a Philadelphia athlete that it makes me notice how much Carson Wentz isn’t. Hunting trips? Shotgun gifts? Getting locked in a gas station bathroom? That’s just not cutting it. Carson, immediately, needs to start drinking Shirley Temples, imitating pro wrestler entrances, and insulting porn stars on Instagram, or else I fear he won’t last in this town. 

Another good column by Marcus Hayes -- the Eagles must sacrifice multiple draft picks to trade up for wide receiver Mike Williams. Whatever it takes. 

Come on Eagles- no room on the staff for either of Buddy’s sons? How about both? 

Follow @FakeWIPCaller on Twitter. 

Penn State men's hockey ranked No. 1 for first time in program history

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Penn State men's hockey ranked No. 1 for first time in program history

At 16-2-1, Penn State's men's hockey team is ranked first in the nation for the first time in program history.

The Nittany Lions have improved each of the last four years under head coach Guy Gadowsky. 

Their record by year:

      2013-14: 8-26-2
      2014-15: 18-15-4
Last season: 21-13-4
This season: 16-2-1

Penn State received 30 of 50 first-place votes in the USCHO Division I poll. Denver is ranked No. 2, followed by Boston University, Minnesota-Duluth and Massachusetts-Lowell (see USCHO poll).

Penn State was ranked fourth last week before sweeping Michigan State.