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Payne Horning / WRVO News

At the first Super DIRT week held at the Oswego Speedway, fans packed the newly renovated grandstands and eagerly awaited the premiere race on Sunday. But it wasn't without a few bumps in the road.

Payne Horning / WRVO News

The Oswego Speedway is covered in dirt for the first time since it was paved in 1952. It's just one of the many changes at the racetrack in preparation for the upcoming SuperDIRT Week race.

governorandrewcuomo / Flickr

IndyCar racing will have a home at Watkins Glen International at least for the next two years. Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced a deal to return the open car racing to the famed speedway while visiting the New York State Fair Thursday.

Track President Michael Printup says this is a landmark moment for the famed track.

"We now host every racing series in the country,” said Printup. “So it’s great to bring it back to the fans. It’s the pinnacle of racing. These are rockets on wheels.”

Jason Smith / WRVO News File Photo

The Onondaga County Legislature has solidified the future of minor league baseball in Syracuse.  Lawmakers agreed Tuesday on a new deal for the Syracuse Chiefs to rent the county-owned NBT Bank Stadium for the next decade.

NY amateurs hope legalizing pro MMA will help them, too

Aug 2, 2016
Bret Jaspers / WSKG News

Screaming fans crowded Magic City Music Hall in Binghamton one night in April to cheer on their favorite fighter at an amateur mixed martial arts match. It was hard to tell who was more invested: the fighter, or their families. 

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

Syracuse University has hired a new athletic director, after its previous one, Mark Coyle, left after less than one year on the job. University officials hope the new athletic director will be staying much longer. John Wildhack is an SU alumnus and executive vice president at ESPN in programming and production.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

For the first time in the school’s history, a woman will hold the graduate manager position for the Syracuse University Men’s Basketball Team. It’s a rarity in NCAA men’s basketball.

Katie Kolinski runs the clock on the sidelines as forward Tyler Lydon of the Syracuse Men’s Basketball team runs drills, practicing his shot.

“It’s pretty surreal, it’s literally like a dream come true,” Kolinski said.

Kolinski was already with the team for the past five years as an undergrad, including for two Final Four appearances. But being a graduate manager is a little different.

Empire League

It looks like the Watertown Bucks are back again this season as the city's own professional baseball team. For a few months last year, it looked like the Bucks were gone for good after the North Country Baseball League folded. Now, the Bucks are in a different league and its manager is determined to keep America’s pastime in Watertown for good.

Redeemer Cup brings new & old Uticans together

Jun 8, 2016
David Chanatry/NY Reporting Project

The sounds of sport filled the air in Utica this past weekend, but despite the time of year, it wasn’t the crack of the bat that was heard. More than 10 percent of the city’s population is made up of refugees, and they were playing a different game.

In Utica’s Proctor Park, between a baseball diamond and basketball court, several fields were full of sounds of “the beautiful game.”

It’s the sixth Redeemer Cup international soccer tournament, a sort of mini-World Cup in central New York. Fifteen teams competed this year, comprised of refugees and immigrants.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

As fans of all ages cheer on the Syracuse University men’s and women’s basketball teams in the Final Four this weekend, some are celebrating this milestone by looking back on Jim Boeheim's career. Boeheim is in his 40th year as the head coach, but started as a player on the team in the 1960’s before becoming an assistant coach.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

The Syracuse University men’s and women’s basketball teams will both be playing in the Final Four this year. It’s the first time in the school’s history that both will compete in the Final Four at the same time.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

It’s a big week for sports fans around the region, as the Syracuse University men’s and women’s basketball teams are each headed to the Final Four this weekend. One of the ways fans like to show their support? Buying T-shirts.

fightlaunch / Flickr

New York becomes the last state in the nation to legalize mixed martial arts, following a 113-25 vote in the Assembly Tuesday. The bill was placed on the floor for a vote after a majority of Democrats backed the legislation.

During debate on the Assembly floor, opponents urged the state to continue the ban on mixed martial arts, also known as ultimate fighting. Assemblywoman Ellen Jaffe, from the Hudson Valley, says the activity is “sanctioning violence for profit” and has no place in New York .

North Country Baseball League Facebook page

The sun refuses to set on professional baseball in Watertown. After the North Country Baseball League folded late last year, a new corporate-sponsored league is taking its place. The Watertown Bucks will open another season throwing their first pitch at the city fairgrounds this summer.

Eddie Gonzalez is a professional baseball player who coached one of the Watertown Bucks' biggest rivals — Road City. As he watched his team take the field every day, he remembered his own struggles trying to make it big in baseball.

North Country Baseball League

The North Country Baseball League has folded.  The owner of The Watertown Bucks, the city’s first pro-baseball team in twenty years, has announced the team won’t be returning.

Back in January, news spread that pro baseball was on its way back to Watertown. The plan was The East Coast Baseball League would have 16 teams including the newly minted Watertown Bucks. But by the spring, the owner of the league pulled out. Bucks owner Bruce Zicari and team manager Matt McClusky acted fast with a plan to save baseball.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

The 2015 World Indoor Lacrosse Championship is being billed as "lacrosse comes home" because it is being hosted by the Onondaga Nation and the sport was invented by indigenous nations in upstate New York. The tournament runs from Sept. 18-27.

Ryan Delaney / WRVO file photo

Syracuse University announced Thursday that assistant men's basketball coach Mike Hopkins will succeed head coach Jim Boeheim when Boeheim retires in three years. Hopkins played at Syracuse from 1989- 1993 and has been an assistant coach on the team since 1996.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

Syracuse University’s new athletic director is promising strong academics and winning teams as he was introduced to the public by Syracuse University. Mark Coyle is leaving his job as athletic director at Boise State University, to take the helm of an athletic department that’s seen its share of troubles lately.

Dads, college guys get to test their rides at Watkins Glen

Apr 25, 2015
Monica Sandreczki / WSKG News

It’s springtime (even if it doesn't feel like it) and you know what that means – racing season. Watkins Glen International speedway marked it opening weekend by opening its track to amateurs. The big weekend is the NASCAR race in August. But right now, it’s all about the amateur racing.

A few hundred New Yorkers came down to the speedway to drive their personal cars around the track. All it takes is $25 and a drivers license and you’ve got your ticket to ride.

Matt Richmond/WSKG

The NBA playoffs begin this weekend. And while big city teams like Oakland, Cleveland and Atlanta are the favorites, sixty years ago the league looked much different.

In 1955, the Syracuse Nationals took home the title, beating the Fort Wayne Pistons in seven games. One of the guards on that team was Binghamton resident Bill Kenville, known during his playing days as Billy the Kid, and Kenville followed a surprising path to the NBA.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

This is a big weekend for central New York’s hospitality industry – 30,000  people are rolling into town this weekend for the NCAA men's East Regional basketball games at the Carrier Dome held Friday and Sunday. And they’ll bring plenty of dollars to spend. 

Tracey Burkey of the Syracuse Visitors Bureau says this is one of the biggest events the city hosts over a short period of time. They’ve been planning for months. But they decided against what many other communities do when hosting games, that is creating a fan festival that brings visitors to one place.

Chris Boese / via Flickr

Ski slopes this winter had some of their best snow in years, but record cold temperatures kept many skiers sheltered indoors. Now a cold March is allowing ski resorts to get a late-season boost to business.

This will be the last weekend of operation for Labrador Mountain, located south of Syracuse. Peter Harris, who owns Labrador and Song Mountains, says there will be a few more weekends to ski and ride at Song, which has a slightly deeper snowpack.

He says business all year has been about average, balancing the great snow with cold temps.

cuse.com

A major instance of academic fraud with the Syracuse University basketball program was the work of "rogue individuals," according to now former S.U. athletic director Daryl Gross.

Gross, who stepped down last week following an NCAA investigation into Syracuse athletics, spoke with WRVO News Tuesday.

Ryan Delaney / WRVO

Syracuse University basketball coach Jim Boeheim will appeal sanctions handed down on him from the NCAA, calling the penalties "unduly harsh."

For the first time since the NCAA released a report on the Syracuse athletic department March 6 charging the basketball program had run off the rails, Boeheim addressed the accusations. He spoke to the media for an hour Thursday at the Carrier Dome, saying he wanted to put forth his opinion on how events of academic fraud and poor oversight outlined by the NCAA took place.

  

MGoBlog / via Flickr

The career of basketball coach Jim Boeheim at Syracuse University now has an end date, with his announced retirement coming in the aftermath of an NCAA investigation into his program.

The university says Boeheim’s retirement in three years will bring certainty to the program and allow for "a successful, longer-term transition in coaching leadership," Chancellor Kent Syverud wrote in an open letter.

MGoBlog / via Flickr

The impact of an NCAA investigation into Syracuse University's athletics department has come to bear: Daryl Gross is out as athletic director and men's basketball coach Jim Boeheim will retire in three years.

The university also announced Wednesday it will appeal the vacation of more than 100 wins as ordered by the NCAA.

MGoBlog / via Flickr

  Top Syracuse University officials that work with student athletes say the culture that allowed for its top sports programs to violate NCAA rules over the span of a decade is no more.

The university says it took a number of steps to ensure better compliance with NCAA rules before the college sports governing body handed down the results of its investigation. That includes hiring Tony Powell to be assistant provost for student athlete development. He works closely with Rick Burton, who was named academic athletics representative last year.

MGoBlog / via Flickr

Syracuse University could make a decision on whether to appeal harsh sanctions against its athletic department from the NCAA as early as next week.

Syracuse University Chancellor Kent Syverud and other university officials plan to sit down Monday to discuss the penalties and fines handed down from the college athletics governing body. In a letter to university faculty, interim Vice Chancellor Liz Liddy detailed the meeting and timeline.

Matthew Snyder / via Flickr

There is plenty of snow on the ground, but frigid temperatures are keeping people away from upstate New York’s ski mountains.

With schools out for winter break last week, President’s Day week is usually a key money-maker for ski slopes. But temperatures barely got into the double digits last week and despite good conditions, many skiers stayed inside.

Jim Hickey, who owns Toggenburg Ski Resort south of Syracuse, says it was “crazy” how cold it was last week.

cuse.com

Syracuse University announced Wednesday that it has instituted a self-imposed postseason ban for this year's men's basketball team, following an investigation by the NCAA Committee on Infractions. 

In a news release, the university said it self-reported potential violations to the NCAA in 2007. Many of the potential violations were academic in nature. The university said that most of the alleged conduct occurred "long ago and none occurred after 2012." The university says no current student athlete is involved in the investigation. 

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