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  1. Bruce Carter expects to step into middle of things for Bucs

    Bucs

    TAMPA — Middle linebacker is a crucial position in Lovie Smith's defense, calling defensive signals, covering plenty of ground in pass coverage and having a natural leadership role in the middle of the field.

    Bruce Carter is ready for that challenge.

    "It's got to be somebody who can lead on and off the field, somewhat of a captain," said Carter, speaking to local media Monday for the first time since he signed with the Bucs last month. "Guys have to look up to him, not only vocally but in your play, how you carry yourself. That's something I'm going to work on, and hopefully I can do a great job at it."...

  2. St. Petersburg mayor's pier committee to try again

    Local Government

    ST. PETERSBURG — The three pier design team finalists must prove their worth Thursday before dozens of supporters, naysayers and a beleaguered six-member selection panel.

    The stakes are high for Alfonso Architects, the St. Pete Design Group and ASD and its partners, the three teams competing for the $46 million pier project.

    When last the selection committee met, it appeared to be leaning toward Alfonso's Alma idea, with Destination St. Pete Pier from the St. Pete Design Group and ASD's Pier Park coming in second and third in that order....

  3. Semi overturns, spills diesel fuel, fertilizer on Interstate 4

    Public Safety

    A semitrailer truck containing fertilizer overturned early Tuesday morning, spilling the substance and 120 gallons of diesel fuel across Interstate 4, said Florida Highway Patrol officials.

    The truck overturned in the eastbound lane of Interstate 4, near the MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre at U.S. Highway 301, FHP spokesman Steve Gaskins said. No one was injured.

    Crews used heavy equipment to scoop the mounds of granular urea fertilizer off the road, Gaskins said. ...

  4. 'Mythbusters' live show will get fans into the action in Tampa on Thursday

    Events

    You'd better be ready to join in when the MythBusters duo of Adam Savage and Jamie Hyneman bring their live show to Tampa on Thursday. The show promises no less than a dozen chances for audience members to swing a sledgehammer or match wits with the Discovery Channel's most popular wizards of weird science.

    Because it's in an enclosed theater at the David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts, there won't be fire and explosions like on the long-running TV show in which the hosts use scientific methods to prove or debunk rumors, myths and pop culture legends. ...

    MythBusters: Jamie and Adam Unleashed is coming to the Straz Center on Thursday.
  5. FHP: Port Richey man critically injured after car crashes into home

    Accidents

    A 31-year-old Port Richey man suffered critical injuries when he crashed his Chevrolet Camaro into a home on Grant Drive about 6 p.m. Monday, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

    Victor Rivera was driving east on Ranch Road at a high rate of speed when he lost control of the car, troopers said. The Camaro spun off the road, through a fence and into a tree before hitting the house, according to the FHP....

  6. St. Petersburg firefighters pull grandmother from burning home

    Fire

    ST. PETERSBURG — A woman was badly burned on her face and upper body by a fire in a home on 19th Avenue South overnight, authorities said.

    She was flown to Tampa General Hospital for treatment of second- and third-degree burns, according to St. Petersburg Fire Rescue Lt. Steve Lawrence.

    The blaze struck 1719 19th Ave. S about 3:05 a.m., firefighters said. Three other occupants made it out safely. Rescuers said there were no working smoke alarms inside the house....

    The blaze struck 1719 19th Ave. S about 3:05 a.m., firefighters said. Three occupants made it out safely. Rescuers said there were no working smoke alarms inside the house. [St. Petersburg Fire Rescue]
  7. Ruth Eckerd Hall's Broadway lineup brings Kristin Chenoweth, 'Bullets Over Broadway'

    Events

    Tony Award winner Kristin Chenoweth, the Broadway smash The Producers and the movie-turned-musical Saturday Night Fever are among the shows announced Tuesday by Ruth Eckerd Hall for its 2015-16 Broadway season.

    Ruth Eckerd CEO Zev Buffman said he was proud they could offer "such a wide variety of stellar musicals this season," which will also bring Woody Allen's Bullets Over Broadway and some classic Broadway shows. ...

    Actress and singer Kristin Chenoweth, seen here in New York in 2012, joins Ruth Eckerd Hall's Broadway lineup for 2015-16. Photo by Amy Sussman/Getty Images
  8. Tuesday's sports on TV/radio

    TV and Radio

    TODAY

    Baseball
    Red Sox at Rays7 p.m.Sun Sports; 620-AM
    Cardinals at Nationals7 p.m.MLB
    College baseball
    Clemson at Georgia7 p.m.SEC
    College softball
    Michigan State at Michigan7 p.m.Big Ten
    NBA playoffs, first round
    East, Game 2: Celtics at Cavaliers7 p.m.TNT
    East, Game 2: Wizards at Raptors8 p.m.NBA
    West, Game 2: Mavericks at Rockets9:30 p.m.TNT
    NHL playoffs, first round
    East, Game 3: Lightning at Red Wings7 p.m.FSF; 970-AM
    East, Game 4: Capitals at Islanders7:30 p.m.USA
    West, Game 4: Predators at Blackhawks9:30 p.m.NBCSN
    West, Game 4: Canucks at Flames10 p.m.USA
    Soccer
    UEFA Champions League: Paris St. Germain at Barcelona2:30 p.m.FS1; ESPND
    UEFA Champions League: Porto at Bayern Munich2:30 p.m.FS2
    Mexican Cup: Guadalajara at Puebla8:50 p.m.ESPND
    Tennis
    ATP: Barcelona Open7:30 a.m.Tennis
    ...

  9. Clearwater football coach Donnie Abraham steps down

    Footballpreps

    Clearwater High football coach Donnie Abraham announced Monday that he is resigning to pursue other opportunities.

    The decision comes a week before the start of spring football. Don Mesick, an assistant coach with the Tornadoes, will take over as interim head coach.

    Abraham, a former player for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers who previously coached at Gibbs, did not say what those opportunities would be. He was 4-16 in two seasons at Clearwater. His son, Devin, a former East Lake standout, is currently a defensive back at USF....

    Former Bucs player Donnie Abraham, middle, said Monday that he was resigning after two seasons as the head football coach at Clearwater High. The Tornadoes went 4-16 during his tenure.
  10. Are Tampa police violating civil rights law with bicycle stops?

    Public Safety

    Tampa City Council Chairman Frank Reddick called Monday for an investigation into whether the Tampa Police Department is violating civil rights law with its long-standing practice of targeting poor, black neighborhoods for bicycle tickets.

    Reddick said he wants police Chief Jane Castor and Mayor Bob Buckhorn to publicly answer questions about how officers are handing out tickets.

    Reddick's call was in response to a Tampa Bay Times report on Sunday that revealed police have been using bicycle law as an excuse to stop, question and search riders in high-crime neighborhoods. ...

    Lloyd Brown, 63, center, of Tampa Heights, shown at the Joe Haskins Bicycle Shop on March 27, was stopped by Tampa police for not having his lights on. He was then searched by the officer, who found a small amount of crack cocaine, leading to his arrest and a charge of felony possession. 
  11. Free and cheap fun: 5 things to do under $5 April 23-29

    Events

    1 Pets in the Park: See Twiggy the waterskiing squirrel at this free day out for pets, formerly called Pet-a-Palooza, in Raymond James Stadium's Lot 6. The Ultimate Air Dogs dock jumping competition will also be there and there's a pet costume contest and lots of vendors. It runs from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday. Free.

    2 Healthy Kids Day Tampa: The day to help families develop healthy routines at home includes bounce houses, fitness demonstrations, arts and crafts, water safety tips, healthy snacks, music by DJ Jake Dela Cruz and sports giveaways. It's free at Curtis Hixon Park, 600 N Ashley Drive, Tampa, from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday....

    iStockphoto.com
  12. Lightning seeks at least a split in Detroit

    Lightning Strikes

    DETROIT — The Lightning is feeling pretty good after the first two games of its first-round series with the Red Wings.

    It has been arguably the better team in both, controlling play for large portions, dictating the action with its speed.

    But with a 5-1 victory Saturday clinching just a split at home, Tampa Bay still needs to steal at least one win on the road to take this best-of-seven series....

    Lightning goalie Ben Bishop hangs on for a save in the first period of Game 2, in which Tampa Bay evened its series against Detroit with a 5-1 victory.
  13. Jason Garrison progressing, but still doubtful for Game 3

    Lightning Strikes

    DETROIT — Lightning D Jason Garrison isn't likely to return to the lineup by tonight's Game 3 in Detroit.

    "Doubtful," coach Jon Cooper said. "He's probably out."

    But Garrison, sidelined with an upper-body injury since March 28, is encouraged with his progress, and it appears he could be back this week. Originally scheduled to be out 3-4 weeks, the four week mark is Saturday's Game 5. Cooper said after tonight, he'll be a "game-time decision" going forward....

    Lightning defenseman Jason Garrison, injured in this March 28 game against the Red Wings, is doubtful for Tuesday’s Game 3. [Associated Press]
  14. Rays: Kacey Musgraves added to concert series

    The Heater

    Concert add

    The Rays announced that budding country music star Kacey Musgraves will join the summer concert series. She's scheduled to perform on Saturday, July 25, after the Rays host Baltimore.

    Numbers of the day

    .425 Home winning percentage since the start of the 2014 season

    .609 Home winning percentage from 2008-13

    Rays vs. Red Sox

    When/where: 7:10 tonight; Tropicana Field...

    Kacey Musgraves’ follow-up to her major-label debut is expected out by the summer.
  15. U.S. House bill could bring $94 million to MacDill

    Military

    TAMPA — If U.S. Rep David Jolly gets his way, MacDill Air Force Base could see about $94 million more dollars next year.

    Jolly, R-Indian Shores, announced Monday he secured the money in a bill that the Military Construction and Veterans Affairs subcommittee approved.

    The bill allots $39 million for a new 36,600-square-foot Special Operations facility at the base. It also allots another $55 million for runway improvements, which will accommodate 23 incoming Army Reserve Black Hawk helicopters. ...