ANN ARBOR, MI – OCTOBER 17: Head coach Jim Harbaugh of the Michigan Wolverines leads his team onto the field before the college football game against the Michigan State Spartans at Michigan Stadium on October 17, 2015 in Ann Arbor, Michigan. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)Solon, Ohio’s Najee Story is just a high school sophomore, but he’s likely to become one of the biggest recruits in the Midwest.Story’s season was unfortunately cut short due to a broken leg in the fall, but he showed enough to land an offer from Dana Holgorsen’s West Virginia staff.Now, two of the biggest programs in the region have come calling.Last week, while on a junior day visit, Michigan defensive line coach Shaun Nua extended a scholarship offer to Story.From 247Sports:“Before we left, their new defensive line coach Shaun Nua came over to me and said he couldn’t let me leave without giving me a Michigan offer,” he added. “I was very surprised by that, to be honest. It felt amazing and I was pretty speechless because I had just met Coach Nua that day. This was my first visit to Michigan and everything was great.”When he returned from Ann Arbor, the Wolverines’ hated rival, Ohio State, came calling for the home-state star.A planned Ohio State trip earlier this month was canceled, but Buckeyes coach Tony Alford made sure to offer Najee Story.He has also spoken to new Buckeyes head coach Ryan Day, when he visited for bowl practice:“Shortly after landing his Michigan offer, Story talked with Ohio State assistant coach Tony Alford by phone. Story was supposed to attend the Ohio State junior day the week before, but that was canceled due to weather.‘I did speak with Coach Alford the night I got back from Michigan, and he told me he intended to do something in person but that wasn’t possible because things got canceled,” Story explained. “He went ahead and offered me a scholarship right then. Ohio State has been the team I’ve watched growing up, so for them to offer me is hard to put into words.’”Now, Story is heading back to Columbus this Saturday with his father.It is too early to know who the finalists will be, and there are dozens of offers inevitably coming Story’s way, but Ohio State and Michigan are definitely getting out ahead of their other recruiting rivals, and both appear to have made a strong earlier impression.[247Sports]
Beginning his day in Damascus, the Secretary-General met with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to review efforts to calm tensions in the Middle East. According to a UN spokesman, the talks lasted for more than an hour and included a tête-à-tête session. The two leaders also discussed the stalled Syrian track of peace negotiations with Israel, tensions along the Lebanon-Israel border and the Security Council’s review of the Iraq sanctions regime.Talks between the Secretary-General and the Syrian President touched on the report of the committee of fact-finding headed by former United States Senator George Mitchell. Speaking to reporters after the meeting, Mr. Annan said he had pointed out that the Mitchell committee report did not supplant UN resolutions which form the foundation for a peace settlement. “I indicated that the Mitchell report is not replacing the resolutions but it is an interim step to get the parties back to the table,” he said, adding that a settlement “will have to be based on ‘land for peace,’ which is the basic premise of the UN resolutions.”Asked about the discussions on Iraq, the Secretary-General noted President Assad’s view that the Security Council should bear in mind the concerns of neighbouring countries, and added that the question of Iraqi oil sales to Syria was “part of the issue being discussed.”Mr. Annan also discussed the Middle East and Iraq during a meeting yesterday evening with Syrian Foreign Minister Farouk al-Sharaa, who then hosted a dinner in the Secretary-General’s honour.Following his talks in Damascus, the Secretary-General travelled to Aqaba, Jordan, where he met with King Abdullah the Second, Prime Minister Ali Abul Raghed and Foreign Minister Abdul Elah al-Khatib. Their 45-minute encounter included a 10 minute one-on-one session between the Secretary-General and the King.According to the UN spokesman, the discussions focused on the Israeli-Palestinian situation. The Secretary-General also received a comprehensive briefing on the implications for Jordan of the current Security Council discussions on Iraq.The Secretary-General is scheduled to travel to Beirut, Tel Aviv and Ramallah in the coming days. “The immediate focus of my mission is the crisis between Israel and Palestine, but I also hope to help stabilize the situation on the Blue Line of Israeli withdrawal [from Lebanon], with a view to avoiding further escalation by either side,” he told the press in Damascus.
The disarmament of Iraq through the inspection process is an alternative to the avenue of armed conflict, the chief United Nations arms inspector, Hans Blix, said today in Vienna, where he made a brief stopover on his way to Baghdad for further talks with Iraqi officials this weekend.”I think everybody would like to see effective inspections to be the way to disarmament,” Mr. Blix, Executive Chairman of UN Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission (UNMOVIC), said in an address to a group of inspector trainees. “This is certainly the wish of the Arab world, all Europeans and I’m convinced also of [US] President Bush and [UK Prime Minister Tony] Blair.”The group of 57 men and women from 22 countries, having completed their three-week training course, are going back to their respective countries and are now on a roster from which UNMOVIC can draw personnel for future inspections.In his statement, Mr. Blix also stressed that the disarmament process requires active cooperation from Iraq, both on process and substance. “We had eight years there when a lot was achieved, but we would like to have a disarmament that is quicker than that,” the Executive Chairman said. “The world is not going to wait another eight years.”Mr. Blix and Mohamed ElBaradei, Director-General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), are expected to arrive tomorrow in Baghdad, where they will hold two days of talks with senior Iraqi officials. A press conference is scheduled for the conclusion of the discussions on Sunday evening.