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J O I N U S O N L I N E S T L T O D A Y. C O M / S P O R T S

WEDNESDAY • 01.04.2017 • B

CLOSING IN ON CANTON? Warner, Bruce are inalists for Pro Football Hall of Fame

Watching Rams stink goes from fun to boring BE BEN FREDERICKSON St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Here’s how the Rams finished their first season back in Los Angeles: They were trailing a bad Arizona Cardinals team by 38 points with 34 seconds left in their seventh consecutive

BY JIM THOMAS St. Louis Post-Dispatch

loss when their third-string quarterback fumbled on the game’s final play. It was a perfect ending, so ugly it was beautiful. I would be lying if I said I watched it. I’ve been an outspoken proponent of hate-watching the Rams since they relocated. I’m not here to tell you to stop. But I


Rams quarterback Kurt Warner looks to pass to Marshall Faulk in the 2002 Super Bowl against New England.


Is this the year for quarterback Kurt Warner? The former Super Bowl champion and NFL most valuable player with the St. Louis Rams was among 15 modern-era finalists announced Tuesday for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. This is Warner’s third

year as a finalist. New to the finalist list this year is another star of those Greatest Show on Turf teams, wide receiver Isaac Bruce. The list also includes the late Don Coryell, the offensive innovator who coached the “Cardiac Cards” St. Louis football Cardinals teams of the mid-1970s. The rest of the modernera finalist list consists of

See NFL • Page B6

Blues need more of same


BRINGING UP Tigers take four-game losing streak into conference opener against LSU


Classic performance had right formula BY TOM TIMMERMANN St. Louis Post-Dispatch

BY DAVE MATTER St. Louis Post-Dispatch


Missouri’s Willie Jackson (right) fouls Arizona’s Rawle Alkins on Dec. 10, in Columbia, Mo.

> 8 p.m. Wednesday vs. LSU, SEC Network > Kentucky freshman Monk leads SEC in scoring. B4 > Team-by-team previews, preseason rankings. B4

The Winter Classic was touted by some as a once-in-a-lifetime event. It would be a big help for the Blues if the way they played wasn’t. The Blues proved again Monday that it can be done, that they do have it in them to play a winning style against a top club. Against the Blackhawks, one of the best third-period teams in the league, they took control of the game in the final 20 minutes and, against a team that was 191-3 when either ahead or tied after two periods, put together one of the team’s biggest feelgood wins since, well, they beat the Blackhawks in Game 7 of the playofs last season. The Blues didn’t just outscore the Blackhawks 3-0 in the third period at Busch Stadium on Monday, they outshot them 12-6, and the game’s possession stats began to swing noticeably in the Blues’ favor from early in the second period on. “That’s how we need to play,” said forward Patrik Berglund, who got the goal that evened the score at 1-1. “We need to check and make the right decisions and if we do that, we will be really successful this year. But we’ve been going too much back and forth and that is our problem this year. But if we can find a way to put a couple of games

OLUMBIA, MO. • There’s

nothing Kim Anderson can do to erase the Missouri basketball team’s first two months of the season, but to salvage his third year on the bench, he’s tried convincing his team the season starts anew this week. The Tigers finished nonconference play 5-7 — only three other high-major conference teams are under .500 — and trudge into their Southeastern Conference opener on a four-game losing streak. Heading into Wednesday’s 8 p.m. tipoff against Louisiana State (8-4, 0-1 SEC) at Mizzou Arena, Anderson has pressed the reset button on the season and reminded his players their record is back to 0-0. Anderson understands it’s a coaching cliché, but he’s running short of motivational tactics. “People probably don’t want to hear this, but as you look back on the nonconference (games), certainly we didn’t accomplish what we would have liked to, but I think you can realistically say it wasn’t like we got blown out by 35 points every game,” Anderson said. “We competed. We had some games where we didn’t play well and certainly there were some teams on our schedule we should have beaten and we didn’t. There’s nothing I can do about that now. I’ve talked to our guys that this is an opportunity for a new start. I’m sure a lot of coaches are saying the same thing today. We just are going

See BLUES • Page B3

>7 p.m. Thursday vs. Carolina, FSM

See MIZZOU • Page B4

Putting the student in student-athlete SLU’s Kemph is an excellent example of how system should work JOSE de JESUS ORTIZ St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Every once in a while, you hear about a kid who makes you feel good about amateur athletics, a young star who puts a genuine

emphasis on the the student part of student-athlete. If you haven’t heard of Jackie Kemph, do yourself a favor and watch one of her St. Louis University women’s basketball games this season. Midway through her junior year, the talented guard is already SLU’s all-time assists leader. And she’s well on her way to becoming the Billikens’ all-time

leading scorer. She’s as competitive as any athlete in St. Louis — amateur or pro, men or women. Equally impressive, I challenge you to find a more committed student-athlete in the state, whether at SLU, Mizzou or any other school. With all due respect to the brilliant Vladimir Tarasenko, ASSOCIATED PRESS

See ORTIZ • Page B5

SLU guard Jackie Kemph figures to own several school records.




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