Thursday, June 21, 2018
News Roundup

Daystarter: Cool, then warming; volunteers needed for college title game; meet poop-scooping Santa

• Cool this morning, with temperatures climbing into the mid to upper 70s in the afternoon, according to 10Weather WTSP. It should continue to warm up through Christmas day, with highs reaching near 80 degrees.

• As you head out for your morning commute, check out our live blog for the latest traffic updates and road conditions across Tampa Bay.

• The College Football National Championship is 18 days away from kicking off at Raymond James Stadium, but organizers still need volunteers to help fill about 1,500 volunteer shifts for the big event. Most won't be working the big game, but will instead be needed to work the 30 playoff events that will take place from Jan. 4 to game day Jan. 9. To find out how the Tampa Sports Authority is recruiting people, read read Anastasia Dawson's story.

• Oh the weather outside is … actually pretty hot for this time of year. But Tampa Bay Times columnist John Romano is a lot better with Christmas carols than we are. Read his annual take on the news in holiday musical form at tampabay.com. Here's a preview: "Here comes sewer waste! Here comes sewer waste!"

• By day, Paul Chesler of Seminole runs a dog poop-scooping business. But come December, he dons a $1,500 Santa suit and works private events as jolly ol' Saint Nick. In a wide-ranging interview, we talk to Santa Paul about what comes with the job — the Santa job, not the poop scooping one. Read the story by Tony Marrero at tampabay.com.

• The Magic Kingdom was once alcohol-free, but starting today four more restaurants will sell beer and wine daily to visitors at Disney World's most popular theme park.

• ICYMI (Part I): After being drenched and battered by two hurricanes in 2016, Florida is facing a new weather threat in 2017: Wildfires. It's been years since the state has faced the kinds of fires that killed 14 people in Tennessee, but officials fear wildfires will return next year due to a dry winter. Craig Pittman reports why officials are concerned.

• ICYMI (Part II): In 1996 the breakneck growth of no-frills airline ValuJet ended when one of its planes crashed into the Everglades, killing all 110 people aboard. The name ValuJet was irreparably tarnished. But for the past 14 years, one of ValuJet's founders has been using the same business blueprint to transform a tiny charter service into one of the largest carriers in the country: Allegiant Air. Check out our special report.

• ICYMI (Part III): Wondering how we built our scale model of the Howard Frankland Bridge for our stop-motion, Lego-driven story last week? Get a behind-the-scenes look.

• If all that shopping has made your wallet a bit light, here are 5 things to do under $5 this week including a Ferris wheel in the park, a bowl game block party and a free concert at an indie music store.

• Here are the top things to do today in Tampa Bay including Broadway's American in Paris a musical version of the TV classic Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.

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Florida eliminates Texas Tech at College World Series, faces Arkansas for title-round spot

Florida eliminates Texas Tech at College World Series, faces Arkansas for title-round spot

OMAHA, Neb. — JJ Schwarz hit a two-run homer and Florida built enough cushion to survive Texas Tech's six-run outburst over the seventh and eighth innings to eliminate the Red Raiders from the College World Series with a 9-6 win Thursday night....
Updated: 2 hours ago
Missed time a good mental reset for Rays’ Matt Duffy

Missed time a good mental reset for Rays’ Matt Duffy

ST. PETERSBURG — Missing all of 2017 might have been the absolute worst thing for Matt Duffy.Frustratingly idled as he eventually recovered and rehabbed from ongoing left heel issues, he couldn't play the game he loved, couldn't show the Rays o...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Timeline of investigations, suspensions and allegations involving Jameis Winston

Timeline of investigations, suspensions and allegations involving Jameis Winston

The NFL will suspend Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston three games without pay to start the regular season for violating the league's personal conduct policy. The suspension could be increased if he fails to meet certain undisclosed requirements expect...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Jameis Winston suspension means Bucs will turn to Ryan Fitzpatrick at QB

Jameis Winston suspension means Bucs will turn to Ryan Fitzpatrick at QB

TAMPA — The news of Jameis Winston's suspension to start this season likely means the Bucs will have veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick stepping in at quarterback for the first three games of the regular season.Fitzpatrick took over as the starter for th...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Kevin Knox to Knicks makes NBA history locally

Kevin Knox to Knicks makes NBA history locally

More than a year ago, Kevin Knox stepped across the stage at the Straz Center to receive his high school diploma.On Thursday, the former Tampa Catholic star was on basketball's biggest stage as he fulfilled his lifelong goal of making the NBA.Knox wa...
Updated: 2 hours ago
2018-19 schedule unveiled: Lightning opens with five straight at home

2018-19 schedule unveiled: Lightning opens with five straight at home

NHL schedules all balance out at the end, but the Lightning will open 2018-19 with five straight home games and end the season with its last four on the road.The Lightning released its schedule Thursday evening for the upcoming season, with all sorts...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Without a first-rounder, Lightning still could have busy draft weekend

Without a first-rounder, Lightning still could have busy draft weekend

The Lightning doesn't have a first-round pick in this weekend's draft, but that's not to say the weekend couldn't be busy for general manager Steve Yzerman and his front office.The Lightning sent its top draft pick to the Rangers in February as part ...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Next move is simple for the Bucs: Get rid of Jameis Winston

Next move is simple for the Bucs: Get rid of Jameis Winston

Trade him. Waive him. Cut him.Whatever.Just get rid of him.Jameis Winston should never play another game for the Tampa Bay Bucs.Plain and simple, he's a bad guy and the Bucs should have nothing more to do with him.He already will miss the first three...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Charles Krauthammer, Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist and intellectual provocateur, dies at 68

Charles Krauthammer, Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist and intellectual provocateur, dies at 68

Charles Krauthammer, a Pulitzer Prize-winning Washington Post columnist and intellectual provocateur who championed the muscular foreign policy of neoconservatism that helped lay the ideological groundwork for the 2003 U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, died...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Rays journal: Jake Bauers proves he’s up to speed on bases

Rays journal: Jake Bauers proves he’s up to speed on bases

ST. PETERSBURG – Rookie 1B Jake Bauers has impressed at the plate and in the field since his June 7 promotion.Also, with his hustling on the bases."I knew he played hard; everybody said that at every level,'' manager Kevin Cash said. "I di...
Updated: 5 hours ago