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Dak Prescott perfected his QB craft watching Alex Smith video clips … – ESPN (blog)

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — When Dak Prescott was in college at Mississippi State, he learned to play quarterback from Alex Smith.

Smith, from his college days at Utah, was inevitably in the video clips that Prescott’s head coach, Dan Mullen, would use to teach him how to properly operate the offense. Mullen and Smith have a connection, too. Mullen was Smith’s position coach at Utah.

“Half the plays we ran were brought from Utah,” Prescott said. “He would show clips of Alex running them, stuff from the shovel pass to the option to stuff in the pass game. I was honestly in college trying to mimic what Alex was doing at Utah.

“I just know a lot of Alex through Coach Mullen. Oftentimes Coach Mullen, in coaching or just trying to give a reference, would mention Alex. I didn’t know him before the NFL but I just know a lot about him and his game through Coach Mullen.”

Prescott and Smith met one another at last year’s Pro Bowl, and on Sunday they will meet again. Prescott’s Cowboys will play against Smith’s Kansas City Chiefs in Dallas.

Both are among the NFL’s top passers. Smith is the NFL’s top-rated quarterback, while Prescott is ninth.

For his part, Smith admires what Prescott has accomplished since joining the Cowboys last season. He replaced the injured Tony Romo as the starting quarterback during the preseason and immediately established himself as one of the NFL’s top QBs.

Smith knows the difficulty of that. Before he was traded to the Chiefs in 2013, it took Smith several seasons before he established his career with the San Francisco 49ers.

“I keep track of him, for sure,” Smith said. “We have mutual college coaches, so I definitely followed him all through college and the last couple of years. How could you not be impressed with what he’s done up to this point? To step into that role, you’re not expected [to play]; you’ve got big shoes to fill, obviously, with Romo going out.

“To come in and to make the plays that he’s done as a young guy, that’s hard, really hard. To be as consistent [and] to do the little things, that’s the thing you see as well. You see both. He’s got the big-play ability, but then coming in and also being so solid, doing the little things play in and play out, giving his team a good chance. I’ve been really impressed and obviously a fan of his. Just not this week.”

While Prescott is doing the same things for the Cowboys that he did last year, Smith is having his best NFL season. The Chiefs are 6-2 in part because of his efforts.

Smith is on pace for 32 touchdown passes and more than 4,300 yards. Both would break his single-season bests by large measures. He hasn’t thrown an interception in 259 pass attempts.

“You’re at the halfway point and you’ve got to just keep going,” Smith said. “If you expect to want to do any of that stuff or eclipse any of that stuff, you’ve just got to keep plugging away. It’s too early, I guess a little bit, to be feeling good or comfortable or anything like that. You just roll.

“We’ve got a bunch of big games [ahead]. They only get bigger. We’ve put ourselves in a good situation. That’s really what you want. That’s what you’ve been working hard for. You’d like that to keep going.”

What’s next for Ashland Craft on ‘The Voice?’ – WYFF-TV – WYFF Greenville

Upstate singer Ashland Craft is moving on to the playoff rounds on NBC’s “The Voice.”

Craft, 21, of Piedmont, won the knockout round on Monday against her teammate Chloe Kohanski, 23, of Nashville, which moves her on to the playoffs. Craft belted out “Wanted Dead Or Alive,” while Kohanski performed an emotional rendition of “Landslide.”

Kohanski will also move on, after coach Blake Shelton stole her for his team.

WYFF-TV

In the playoff rounds, 24 artists will be cut down to 12; three for each coach. There are three recorded episodes during which each artist performs a song they believe proves they deserve to be in the top 12 on the live shows.

The performances of Miley Cyrus’s team, including Craft’s, will air Nov. 14. Performances by Jennifer Hudson’s and Shelton’s singers will air Nov. 13, and performances by Adam Levine’s team will air Nov. 15.

If Craft makes the cut, she will be in the live shows that begin Nov. 20. The television audience will vote during the live shows to save their favorite artists and the two artists with the lowest number of votes will be sent home each week.

In the end, one will be named “The Voice” and will receive the grand prize of a recording contract.

Craft, who graduated from Woodmont High, is a regular performer at Wendell’s Dippin Branch in Anderson. She describes herself as a “small-town girl with big dreams, a lover of Jesus and a country/southern rock singer and songwriter.”

For more on Craft’s background and what the coaches have said about her, click here.

Craft’s opponent, Kohanski, said Cyrus was one of her musical inspirations growing up and that she is “obsessed with her.” She said she always wanted to be a singer, but briefly went to college to study to be an English teacher before she quit school and started performing in a blues band.

“The Voice” airs Mondays and Tuesdays at 8 p.m. on WYFF Channel 4.

Gold rises as investors await Trump’s choice of Fed chair – CNBC

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Gold

Gold prices inched up on Thursday, helped by a weaker dollar as investors waited for the nomination of a new U.S. Federal Reserve chair and the unveiling of U.S. tax reform legislation later in the day.

A decision by the U.S. Fed on Wednesday to leave interest rates unchanged pushed the dollar lower, helping lift dollar-denominated gold by making it cheaper for holders of other currencies.

“The slightly weaker dollar is the main explanation (for gold’s rise),” said Julius Baer analyst Carsten Menke.

Spot gold was up 0.09 percent at $1,275.91 an ounce at 8:35 a.m. ET after touching $1,281.43, the highest since Oct. 26. U.S. gold futures fell 0.1 percent at $1,276 an ounce.

Investor focus was moving to the choice of the next Fed chair, said Menke.

U.S. President Donald Trump is expected on Thursday to nominate Fed Governor Jerome Powell to replace Janet Yellen as leader of the central bank. Powell is seen as less likely to push for rapid interest rate rises than other candidates.

Gold is sensitive to rising interest rates because they push up bond yields, making non-yielding gold less attractive, and tend to boost the dollar.

“If he (Trump) were to pick Fed Governor Powell as expected, gold would likely make slight gains,” said analysts at Commerzbank.

But Menke predicted prices could fall to $1,200 by the end of the year. “We think further rate rises are on the cards, which should support the U.S. dollar and yields,” he said.

Markets are pricing a 97 percent likelihood of a rate increase in December, according the CME Fedwatch tool, but are less certain of the pace of rises next year.

That pace could be accelerated if tax reform legislation to be unveiled by Republicans in the House of Representatives on Thursday were enacted and succeeded in speeding economic growth.

On the technical side, gold was struggling to break above its 100-day moving average at $1,275.60 and indicators suggested prices will fall, analysts said.

“Gold continues to weigh on the downside and still implies a test of the current October low and the 200-day moving average at $1,260.55/$1,260.89,” said Commerzbank technical analysts.

“Between here and the $1,250 2017 uptrend we should see the market attempt to stabilize,” they said in a note.

In other precious metals, silver was down 0.2 percent to $17.09 an ounce.

Platinum was down 0.2 percent to $929 an ounce and palladium was 0.35 percent lower at $998 an ounce.

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Hershey’s Gold: Candy company offers first new bar variety since 1995 – USA TODAY

PHILADELPHIA — The first new candy bar to carry the Hershey’s name in more than two decades is set to hit shelves next month.

The Hershey, Penn.-based candy maker says Hershey’s Gold will go on sale Dec. 1. It’s described as a caramelized cream bar embedded with salty peanut and pretzel bits. Hershey’s says the bar is a response to trends that it says show “the rising popularity of crunchy multi-textured candy.”

Hershey’s Gold will be the fourth bar for the brand and the first new one since Hershey’s Cookies ‘n Creme was introduced in 1995. The original Hershey’s bar was released in 1900 and was followed up by the special dark variety in 1939.

WSU researchers document transformation of graphite into hexagonal diamond – EurekAlert (press release)




A new study by Washington State University researchers answers longstanding questions about the formation of a rare type of diamond during major meteorite strikes.

Hexagonal diamond or lonsdaleite is harder than the type of diamond typically worn on an engagement ring and is thought to be naturally made when large, graphite-bearing meteorites slam into Earth.

Scientists have puzzled over the exact pressure and other conditions needed to make hexagonal diamond since its discovery in an Arizona meteorite fragment half a century ago.

Now, a team of WSU researchers has for the first time observed and recorded the creation of hexagonal diamond in highly oriented pyrolytic graphite under shock compression, revealing crucial details about how it is formed. The discovery could help planetary scientists use the presence of hexagonal diamond at meteorite craters to estimate the severity of impacts.

The research was possible because of an unprecedented experimental development-the WSU-led Dynamic Compression Sector at Argonne National Laboratory’s Advanced Photon Source. The DCS is a first-of-its-kind experimental facility that links different shock wave compression capabilities to synchrotron x-rays. Using its unique capabilities, the WSU team was able to take x-ray snap shots of the transformation of graphite to hexagonal diamond in real-time.

The results of the researchers’ work are published in the journal Science Advances.

“The transformation to hexagonal diamond occurs at a significantly lower stress than previously believed,” said WSU Regents Professor Yogendra Gupta, director of the Institute for Shock Physics and a co-author of the study. “This result has important implications regarding the estimates of thermodynamic conditions at the terrestrial sites of meteor impacts.”

Making diamonds

WSU shock physicist Stefan Turneaure and a team of researchers found that the crystalline structure of a highly oriented form of graphite transforms to the uncommon hexagonal form of diamond at a pressure of 500,000 atmospheres, around four times lower than previous studies had indicated.

To obtain their results, the researchers shot a lithium fluoride impactor at 11,000 mph into a 2 mm thick graphite disk. They then used pulsed synchrotron x-rays to take snapshots every 150 billionths of a second while the shockwave from the impact compressed the graphite sample. Their work clearly showed the graphite sample transformed into the hexagonal form of diamond before being obliterated into dust.

“Most past research relied on microstructural examination of samples after they were shock compressed to infer what might have happened,” Turneaure said. “Such late-time measurements do not tell the whole story of what happened to the material during shock compression.”

Moving forward

Turneaure and Gupta said the next step in the research will be to investigate under what conditions pure hexagonal diamond can be recovered after shock compression.

“Diamond is a material that is very easy to get excited about and our work in this area is just beginning,” Gupta said. “Moving forward, we plan to investigate the persistence of this form of diamond under lower pressure. Because it is thought to be 60 percent harder than the common cubic diamond, hexagonal diamond could have many potential uses in industry if it could be successfully recovered after shock compression.”

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What’s next for Ashland Craft on ‘The Voice?’ – WYFF Greenville

Upstate singer Ashland Craft is moving on to the playoff rounds on NBC’s “The Voice.”

Craft, 21, of Piedmont, won the knockout round on Monday against her teammate Chloe Kohanski, 23, of Nashville, which moves her on to the playoffs. Craft belted out “Wanted Dead Or Alive,” while Kohanski performed an emotional rendition of “Landslide.”

Kohanski will also move on, after coach Blake Shelton stole her for his team.

WYFF-TV

In the playoff rounds, 24 artists will be cut down to 12; three for each coach. There are three recorded episodes during which each artist performs a song they believe proves they deserve to be in the top 12 on the live shows.

The performances of Miley Cyrus’s team, including Craft’s, will air Nov. 14. Performances by Jennifer Hudson’s and Shelton’s singers will air Nov. 13, and performances by Adam Levine’s team will air Nov. 15.

If Craft makes the cut, she will be in the live shows that begin Nov. 20. The television audience will vote during the live shows to save their favorite artists and the two artists with the lowest number of votes will be sent home each week.

In the end, one will be named “The Voice” and will receive the grand prize of a recording contract.

Craft, who graduated from Woodmont High, is a regular performer at Wendell’s Dippin Branch in Anderson. She describes herself as a “small-town girl with big dreams, a lover of Jesus and a country/southern rock singer and songwriter.”

For more on Craft’s background and what the coaches have said about her, click here.

Craft’s opponent, Kohanski, said Cyrus was one of her musical inspirations growing up and that she is “obsessed with her.” She said she always wanted to be a singer, but briefly went to college to study to be an English teacher before she quit school and started performing in a blues band.

“The Voice” airs Mondays and Tuesdays at 8 p.m. on WYFF Channel 4.

Gold hits 1-week high; Fed chair pick in focus – CNBC

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Gold

Gold rose to a one-week high on Thursday amid a weaker dollar, on increased demand from Chinese retail investors and as the market waited for the announcement of a new chair of the U.S. Federal Reserve, expected later in the day.

Spot gold was up 0.3 percent at $1,278.10 per ounce at 0617 GMT, after earlier rising to $1,281.43, the highest since Oct. 26.

U.S. gold futures edged up 0.1 percent to $1,278.80 per ounce.

“The return of Chinese investor interest in gold at these levels is a welcome vote of confidence for long-suffering gold bulls,” said Jeffrey Halley, a senior market analyst with OANDA.

Higher demand from Chinese retail buyers has raised domestic bullion prices and global prices have risen to narrow the gap, he said.

U.S. President Donald Trump is expected on Thursday to nominate Jerome Powell as the next head of the Fed, putting his own stamp on the leadership of the U.S. central bank while signalling continuity on monetary policy.

“A lot of the focus is on the Fed chair, and Trump’s expected nomination of Jerome Powell,” said OCBC analyst Barnabas Gan.

“The current movement in prices is not really about him (Powell) being hawkish or dovish, but more so about market uncertainty about what his nomination would mean.”

The dollar pulled back from a 3-1/2-month high versus the yen and also fell against the euro, sagging ahead of a U.S. tax bill that will be unveiled after a one-day delay.

The Fed kept interest rates unchanged on Wednesday and pointed to solid U.S. economic growth and a strengthening labor market while playing down the impact of recent hurricanes, a sign it is on track to lift borrowing costs again in December.

“Right now, we see prices supported above $1,270 until perhaps a week from now. But beyond that, when the Fed meets in December, we expect one more rate hike,” OCBC’s Gan said.

“On that note, we are still bearish on gold and expect prices to touch $1,250 at year-end, underpinned by the rate hike.”

Gold is highly sensitive to rising U.S. interest rates, as these lift the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding bullion, while boosting the dollar, in which it is priced.

Spot gold may break a resistance at $1,283 per ounce, and rise into a range of $1,289 to $1,295, said Reuters technical analyst Wang Tao.

Silver prices edged up 0.1 percent to $17.13 per ounce.

Platinum inched up 0.1 percent to $931.70, while palladium eased 0.2 percent to $1,000.00.

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What’s next for Ashland Craft on ‘The Voice?’ – WYFF-TV – WYFF Greenville

Upstate singer Ashland Craft is moving on to the playoff rounds on NBC’s “The Voice.”

Craft, 21, of Piedmont, won the knockout round on Monday against her teammate Chloe Kohanski, 23, of Nashville, which moves her on to the playoffs. Craft belted out “Wanted Dead Or Alive,” while Kohanski performed an emotional rendition of “Landslide.”

Kohanski will also move on, after coach Blake Shelton stole her for his team.

WYFF-TV

In the playoff rounds, 24 artists will be cut down to 12; three for each coach. There are three recorded episodes during which each artist performs a song they believe proves they deserve to be in the top 12 on the live shows.

The performances of Miley Cyrus’s team, including Craft’s, will air Nov. 14. Performances by Jennifer Hudson’s and Shelton’s singers will air Nov. 13, and performances by Adam Levine’s team will air Nov. 15.

If Craft makes the cut, she will be in the live shows that begin Nov. 20. The television audience will vote during the live shows to save their favorite artists and the two artists with the lowest number of votes will be sent home each week.

In the end, one will be named “The Voice” and will receive the grand prize of a recording contract.

Craft, who graduated from Woodmont High, is a regular performer at Wendell’s Dippin Branch in Anderson. She describes herself as a “small-town girl with big dreams, a lover of Jesus and a country/southern rock singer and songwriter.”

For more on Craft’s background and what the coaches have said about her, click here.

Craft’s opponent, Kohanski, said Cyrus was one of her musical inspirations growing up and that she is “obsessed with her.” She said she always wanted to be a singer, but briefly went to college to study to be an English teacher before she quit school and started performing in a blues band.

“The Voice” airs Mondays and Tuesdays at 8 p.m. on WYFF Channel 4.

Gold prices up; focus on pick for US Fed chair – CNBC

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Gold

Gold prices held onto gains early on Thursday after the U.S. Federal Reserve left interest rates unchanged on Wednesday, and as investors awaited an announcement on a new chair for the central bank later in the day.

Spot gold was up 0.3 percent to $1,277.76 per ounce at 0047 GMT.

U.S. gold futures for December delivery edged up 0.1 percent to $1,278.60.

The dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of six major rivals, was down 0.2 percent to 94.645.

The Federal Reserve kept interest rates unchanged on Wednesday and pointed to solid U.S. economic growth and a strengthening labor market while playing down the impact of recent hurricanes, a sign it is on track to lift borrowing costs again in December.

Asian shares advanced after the Fed expressed optimism about the economy, virtually cementing the case for a year-end rate hike as investors awaited the formal nomination of the next head of the central bank.

U.S. President Donald Trump plans to nominate current Fed Governor Jerome Powell as the next chair of the U.S. central bank, a source familiar with the matter said on Wednesday.

Rising expectations that President Trump will tap Powell, who is seen as more dovish on interest rates, have pressured U.S. Treasury yields and the dollar this week.

The U.S. economy unexpectedly maintained a brisk pace of growth in the third quarter as an increase in inventory investment and a smaller trade deficit offset a hurricane-related slowdown in consumer spending and a decline in construction.

Traders also awaited Donald Trump’s tax plan, which Republicans plan to release Thursday morning.

Holdings of the SPDR Gold Trust, the world’s largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, fell 0.14 percent to 849.59 tonnes on Wednesday.

The Perth Mint’s sales of gold products fell 3.87 percent in October from a month earlier, while silver sales rose about 43 percent, the mint said in a blog post on its website on Wednesday.

South African precious metals producer Sibanye-Stillwater confirmed on Wednesday that it had laid off more than2,000 gold miners as it shuts its loss-making Cooke shafts where illegal mining syndicates have plagued its operations.

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