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Popular with voters, medical marijuana finds few champions in Tallahassee

TALLAHASSEE — Medical marijuana's implementation is turning out to be a slow burn. More than 6 million Floridians voted in November to allow patients with conditions like cancer and HI …

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While Gulfport police investigate drowning of pit bull terrier, social media makes up its own mind

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Bishop Robert Nugent Lynch, at retirement, reflects on church scandals, lessons learned

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Dining: New 'St. Pete-themed' restaurant; Tis the season for wine and chocolate events

Dining: New 'St. Pete-themed' restaurant; Tis the season for wine and chocolate events

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Movies: Tampa Bay Underground Film Fest; Possession Flick 'Incarnate'

Movies: Tampa Bay Underground Film Fest; Possession Flick 'Incarnate'

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Eight fun holiday events across Tampa Bay this weekend, including the Victorian Christmas Stroll (w/video)

Eight fun holiday events across Tampa Bay this weekend, including the Victorian Christmas Stroll (w/video)

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'Into the Woods' starts new tour at Straz Center

'Into the Woods' starts new tour at Straz Center

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  1. Man dies in Thonotosassa motorcycle crash

    Accidents

    THONOTOSASSA — A 30-year-old man is dead after his motorcycle collided with a car making a turn early Friday evening, authorities said.

  2. Man struck by car in Tarpon Springs suffers life-threatening injuries

    Accidents

    TARPON SPRINGS — A 70-year-old man suffered life-threatening injuries Friday evening after being struck by a car in the 900 block of Martin L. King Jr. Avenue, police said.

  3. Tampa Bay Downs ready for festive start to lucrative stakes programs

    Parimutuels

    OLDSMAR — Food, fraternizing and a festive atmosphere will be featured Saturday at Tampa Bay Downs, which kicks off its 24-race, $2.975 million stakes program with a pair of $100,000 sprints on Cotillion Festival Day.

  4. Lightning GM Yzerman concerned but calm about skid

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — If you're a concerned Lightning fan, you've got company.

    Valtteri Filppula, left, and teammates suffered a fourth straight loss vs. the Blues. Defensive breakdowns have been key.
  5. Rays expected to pursue catcher Welington Castillo

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — There were no surprises Friday as the Rays tendered contracts to all of their majors-most 11 arbitration-eligible players.

  6. Tampa Bay Buccaneers-San Diego Chargers: Remembering the 'Yuck-aneers' game

    Sports

    The Bucs play in San Diego on Sunday, a trip to one of the true cradles in franchise history.

    They also won the Super Bowl there.

    Yeah, there was that.

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers Derrick Brooks and fellow Hall of Fame Bucs member Warren Sapp poses with Brooks bust during the Enshrinement Ceremony at the 2014 Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio, Saturday evening (08/02/14).
  7. SEC hopes to mend fences between Florida, LSU

    Colleges

    ATLANTA — Two months after Hurricane Matthew led to the postponement and relocation of the Florida-LSU game, SEC commissioner Greg Sankey said the league will try to repair any strained relationships caused by UF's resistance to moving the game and LSU's insistence on playing it in Tiger Stadium.

  8. Punter Bryan Anger the Bucs' secret weapon

    Bucs

    TAMPA — Bryan Anger understands that fans still don't quote hang times like they do 40-yard times, and that the mere appearance of the home team's punter on the field will generally be seen as a negative in the stands.

    Bryan Anger (9) takes snaps during training camp. (John Pendygraft, Times)
  9. Man shot in armed robbery in Seminole

    Crime

    SEMINOLE

    Intruder shoots armed homeowner

    A Seminole man was shot while chasing an intruder from his home early Friday afternoon, sheriff's deputies said.

  10. Bucs center Hawley claims Seahawks rookie spit on him

    Bucs

    TAMPA — Bucs C Joe Hawley said he was spat on by a Seahawks player in Sunday's win, and Friday, a Seattle rookie fired back, denying the accusation.

Prison official keeps high-paid job as state settles $800,000 case against him

The state takes no blame for what former Florida Department of Corrections inspector general Jeffery Beasley has done, but it is paying $800,000 to end a retaliation lawsuit brought by his former employees and is keeping him in a newly created job that pays $116,500 annually....

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Five things to watch in Bucs-Chargers game Sunday

TAMPA -- Bucs coach Dirk Koetter is seeking the "California sweep," with wins at San Francisco and San Diego in the same season.

In their first 40 seasons, the Bucs totaled just four regular-season wins in California -- at the 49ers in 1980, at the Chargers in 1996, back in San Francisco in 2010 and in Oakland in 2012 -- as well as, of course, their Super Bowl win against the Raiders in San Diego in January 2003.

So two in one season would be quite an accomplishment. Here are five other things to watch in Sunday's Bucs-Chargers game ...

1. Can Brent Grimes intercept a pass from Philip Rivers? Again? Rivers has thrown 147 career interceptions, but no individual player has more than the four that Grimes  has, all in three games over the last three seasons. Rivers is also the quarterback that Grimes has picked off the most in his career, edging the Bucs' Josh Freeman (3) and the Saints' Drew Brees (2), who he'll face twice in the next four games.

Rivers has been around long enough that three other Bucs can claim interceptions against him while with other teams -- CB Alterraun Verner, LB Daryl Smith and S Major Wright.

Just to balance that, Rivers is one of just 13 quarterbacks ever to throw for four touchdown and no interceptions against the Bucs, doing so in a 2008 win. He's only had three such games in his 176-game career; the other two were against the Jaguars.

2. Can Doug Martin rush for 100 yards against San Diego? Martin hasn't cracked 100 yet this season in his five games, topping out at 87 in the win against Seattle.

It'd be notable, in that the Chargers are one of just four NFL teams that haven't given up a 100-yard rushing game this season, along with the Patriots, Cowboys and Giants. Those other three teams are a combined 28-6, as many losses as the 5-6 Chargers have. The Bucs just missed that group, allowing the Bears' Jordan Howard to rush for exactly 100 yards in their win over Chicago.

San Diego hasn't allowed anyone to rush for more than 82 yards -- that's an NFL low -- but the three teams that got 70-yard games against the Chargers all came away with wins.

Most 100-yard games allowed this season? It's easily the 49ers, who have given up eight, double the next-worst run defense, as the Colts and Raiders have allowed four each.

3. Can Robert Ayers stay perfect in San Diego? Ayers started his NFL career in Denver as a division rival of the Chargers, and he's 4-0 in his career at Qualcomm Stadium. Overall, he's 6-3 in his career against San Diego, including a playoff win in 2013.

"Philip Rivers is one of my favorite quarterbacks to play against," said Ayers, who got a sack and forced fumble against him in 2011. "He's a super-fiery guy, super-competitive, brings a lot of passion to the game, like most defensive guys are and how I'd like to think I am."

4. Can the Bucs really win four in a row? Tampa Bay's only had one four-game win streak since the start of 2009, over seven-plus seasons. Their last one came in 2012, and coincided with the last time they played the Chargers.

How many Bucs playing today were in that win against San Diego? Just six -- Martin, Demar Dotson, Gerald McCoy and Lavonte David as starters, with Keith Tandy and Luke Stocker as backups. Four years is a long time. ...

5. How many fumbles can the Bucs defense force? Here's a major opportunity -- Tampa Bay's defense is tied for the NFL lead with 11 forced fumbles, and the Chargers offense is tied for the NFL with 11 fumbles lost.

Travis Benjamin's three lost fumbles are the most by any NFL receiver, and only one running back has lost more than Melvin Gordon, who has two last year and lost four as a rookie last year. Rivers, too, has lost three fumbles.

While we're on the topic of fumbles, the Bucs offense need be careful, too -- Jameis Winston is tied for the NFL lead this year with four lost fumbles, and Doug Martin, who lost one last week, led all NFL running backs with five last season....

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Five steps to loving Stars Hollow: The Musical from 'Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life'

We have had a week to sit with the Gilmore Girls revival. And while I'm never going to excuse certain things — Lorelai would NOT be okay with Rory's questionable life choices; Paris and Doyle would definitely get back together because they are perfect for each other — I don't think I was ever going to be capable of hating whatever Amy Sherman Palladino and her husband Daniel produced. ...

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