Ray Rice's "miracle" 4th-and-29 conversion against the San Diego Chargers has turned into the Ravens' gift that keeps on giving.

For everyone except the Chargers and their fans, of course.

First and most importantly, Rice's play gave the Ravens a first down that eventually led to a game-tying field goal. Then, Rice provided the world with this incredible quote about the play:

"Check down, Hey Diddle Diddle, Ray Rice up the middle."

And now Rice has created "Hey Diddle Diddle" T-shirts, with the proceeds going to his Ray Rice Foundation. And the t-shirts are selling in Baltimore like hot cakes, er, crab cakes.

The Baltimore Sun reported that hundreds of the t-shirts sold in just a few hours.

"Ray Rice has a lot of pull in this town," John Conigliaro, who owns a shop selling the shirts, told the Sun.

Conigliaro told the Sun that he had sold 700 shirts in less than 24 hours.

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to read them first!

Full Story >>

There are few professional athletes who have put their stature to better use than Ray Lewis.

Whether it's speaking to high school and college teams or befriending a dying fan, Lewis has proved time and again that he is determined to use his celebrity to advocate for good causes.

Lewis is currently sidelined with a torn triceps, but even that hasn't forced him to abandon his drive to help others. The Baltimore Ravens website this week b>told the heartwarming story of how Lewis recently went out of his way to speak with a young man dealing with an unthinkably terrible situation.

Jeffrey Lippit and his older sister Annie were driving through Utah on Oct. 12 when Lippit hit the brakes after noticing a semi-truck stopped ahead. It was a rainy day, and Lippit's Pontiac G6 spun into the back of the truck. While Jeffrey was transported to a local hospital with minor injuries, Annie was flown to Las Vegas in critical condition. Annie went into a coma, and she has been unconscious ever since.

Jeffrey is a huge Ravens fan -- Lewis is his favorite player -- so Jeffrey's father, James, got in touch with the Ravens to see if Lewis would be willing to meet with Jeffrey before the Ravens game in San Diego on Sunday. Upon hearing Jeffrey's situation, Lewis was in.

After breaking the huddle with his teammates at Qualcomm Stadium on Sunday, Lewis walked over to Jeffrey and James. Lewis introduced himself and then spoke directly to Jeffrey for about five minutes. It was a dream come true for the 16-year-old.

"He said I have to be the older brother now," Jeffrey told Ryan Mink of Ravens.com. "I have to be strong for her and she's going to come out of this. Hearing it from him, giving him a hug, him whispering in my ear and giving me a kiss, it was the most amazing thing ever. I really needed that."

Lewis took a picture with Jeffrey and James, who was as touched by the moment as his son. Shortly after the meeting, James posted a photo and wrote a note on Facebook:

"One day we will pay forward his generosity, but right now its just sinking in how special the moment was. It only lasted about 5 minutes but the memories will last a lifetime!"

For updates and more information about Annie Lippit, see here.

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to read them first!

Full Story >>

If you're looking for tips on your throwing motion, or your fauxhawk, then charitybuzz.com has an offer for you.

Tom Brady, he of the golden arm and the flowing mane, is offering his services to the highest bidder. That's right, you can now bid on a passing lesson with the three-time Super Bowl champion.

The New England Patriots quarterback has teamed up with the Mark Wahlberg Youth Foundation, and all the proceeds will go to charity.

As of now, the bid stands at $7,250, but it is valued at $20,000.

For those of you who would rather sack Brady than take a lesson from him, you'll have to wait a few more months.

(H/T to Yardbarker)

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to read them first!

Full Story >>

There's no better way to get in the holiday spirit than this story about an unbelievably kind gesture by Indianapolis Colts offensive lineman Mike McGlynn.

Last week McGlynn's wife, Megan, was watching the local news when she saw a piece about a mother of three whose minivan full of Christmas presents had been robbed on "Black Friday." The mother, 31-year-old Lori Diehl, is a teacher on maternity leave. Diehl's husband, Matthew, is also a teacher. The Diehls are in the midst of an unthinkable year, struggling emotionally and economically as Lori took off for maternity leave and Matthew completed chemotherapy to treat Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

"We’ve had a long journey this year," Lori told the Indianapolis Star.

On Black Friday the Diehls were shopping with gift cards they had received from family friends and congregants at their church in Shelbyville, Ind. One can only imagine the horrifying feeling of returning to a car, once full of Christmas gifts bought on donated money, and seeing it empty.

"We had struggled this year and people will never know how much of a blessing they were to reach out to us,” Lori told the Star. “Somehow, I felt like I had let all of them down. I was just devastated.”

After seeing the Diehls' story on television, Megan McGlynn told Mike, who's in his first year with Indianapolis. Mike asked the Colts to get in touch with the Diehls, and when they did, he gave the family some much-needed good news: He would refund everything they lost, about $500 worth of gifts.

"I made a little donation to her and her family, just to make the Christmas time better," McGlynn told the Star.

McGlynn called the Diehls after the Colts' win over the Buffalo Bills on Sunday, and he said their 3-year-old son, Brayden, was "over the moon excited" to speak with him.

"We’re so blessed in here, what we’re doing right now," McGlynn said. "To see somebody who has something happen, everybody works hard for their money, everybody works hard for whatever they can get. To have it taken away is just the wrong thing."

McGlynn wasn't the only one who chipped in. Lori's breast pump was stolen along with the Christmas presents on Black Friday, so the police officer who responded to Lori's original 9-1-1 call donated her old breast pump.

Lori told WISH TV that the overwhelming show of support has itself been a lesson for her children.

"They took the time and really helped us show our children that even in times of adversity there are good people out there," Lori said. "We hope if somebody hears our story, they could bless someone else and find somebody in their life they could reach out to. Just the difference it can make, even if it’s just a small gesture."

(H/T to Off the Bench)

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to read them first!

Full Story >>

When Aaron Rodgers expressed disappointment with his profile on 60 Minutes, he said he was upset to see that the program did not mention his work with the Midwest Athletes Against Childhood Cancer (MACC) Fund, a Milwaukee-based charity that funds research of childhood cancers and blood disorders.

While Rodgers has done a lot of work with MACC, most of it was out of the public eye. Now, thanks to a recently released video, we have some idea of just how much time and effort Rodgers puts into the charity.

In the heartwarming clip, cameras shadow Rodgers as he visits a 10-year-old cancer survivor and enormous Green Bay Packers fan, Maggie.

Rodgers spends an afternoon with Maggie, playing dress-up, soccer and keyboard. Towards the end of the video, the two share a precious moment after Rodgers presents Maggie with an "American Girl" doll:

"You're doing a great job," Rodgers says. "You look amazing: you're beautiful, you're a great athlete and you're fun to hang out with."

"Thanks," Maggie says. "You too."

"All those things?" Rodgers asks.

"Yeah."

This text will be replaced

(H/T to Big Lead Sports)

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to read them first!

Full Story >>

For some of us, middle school and high school were times for creating wonderful memories of friendship, unique events and learning. For victims of bullying, the school experience can be a daily terror, mental and emotional abuse -- the crushing of self-esteem and even physical violence. These students may carry the harrowing images and feelings with them for a lifetime, never fully recovering. School administrators, teachers, police and even parents too often ignore the ramifications of this daily harassment by peers, until it is too late.

My daughter Katie is co-president of the Human Relations Committee, a group of 40 students from Corona Del Mar High School dedicated to preventing the abuse of students by their peers. The committee helped host a showing of the film “Bully” at The Lido Theatre in Newport Beach recently. The film's director, Lee Hirsch, was a victim of bullying himself and made this documentary so that the hidden lives of bullied children would be brought out in the open. He followed students and their families in Georgia, Iowa, Texas, Mississippi and Oklahoma during the 2009-10 school years. It focuses on the deaths of Tyler Long and Ty Smalley, victims of bullying who took their own lives. The film describes in great detail how the average American school kid cannot defend himself or herself against ridicule.

This abuse goes on every day at schools across the country. Just this month, a 16-year-old student and football player in Omaha was beaten by his teammates so brutally that a blood clot near the brain was caused and he still fights for his life. In late September, seven student-athletes in Arkansas were suspended for tying a noose around their black teammate's neck and started to hang him. Kids are beaten up and verbally taunted on school buses, the schoolyard and in bathrooms. They are taunted in a way that may scar them for life.

In the social hierarchy of most schools, where students divide themselves into cliques and "types." Athletes sit at the top in terms of prestige and respect. Because of our veneration of sports, the feats of student-athletes, especially football players, give them top status. They tend to be a magnet for the most attractive members of the opposite sex. They tend to be better developed physically, larger and stronger than their peers. Sports builds tremendous camaraderie and friendships, so athletes tend to congregate with each other when they have time. If there is a desirable "crowd" of friends to be part of on a campus, they will almost always be at its center.

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to read them first!

There are endless programs that can be brought into a school to promote tolerance. Many of them make the bully experience for the first time what it feels like to be ostracized or physically threatened. There is a dehumanization of the target in bullying. Athletes need to be exposed to such programs and encouraged to set the tone of acceptance for their schools. Too often, they may be the students who bully. They need to be the students who set an example for others.

My whole law/agent practice has been built these past 38 years on the premise that athletes can be role models and trigger imitative behavior. Because they are perceived as “macho” and “courageous” they can deliver a message that penetrates the perceptual screen that many young people erect to tune out authority figures. A rebellious adolescent may devalue advice from parents, teachers and police, but will be receptive to a message from the right athlete.

When I helped Lennox Lewis cut a public service announcement that said, "Real Men Don't Hit Women" or Oscar De La Hoya and Steve Young do a poster that proclaimed "Prejudice Is Foul Play," it made an impact. Athletes are perfectly positioned on high school campuses to help stop bullying when it starts. The ostensible reason they participate in sports is to build character, teamwork and self-discipline.

The most important message they could deliver is one of empathy, fairness and "helping" out the victims. The right athletes, properly motivated, could help stem this emotionally and physically crippling practice.

-- Leigh Steinberg has represented many of the most successful athletes and coaches in football, basketball, baseball, hockey, boxing and golf, including the first overall pick in the NFL draft an unprecedented eight times, among more than 60 first-round selections. His clients have included Hall of Fame quarterbacks Steve Young, Troy Aikman and Warren Moon, and he served as the inspiration for the movie "Jerry Maguire." Follow him on Twitter @SteinbergSports.

Full Story >>

Impoverished children all over the world have been receiving new, indestructible soccer balls recently, and they have a world-famous rock star to thank.

British musician Sting teamed up with entrepreneur and lyricist Tim Jahnigen to create a soccer ball which they hope changes the way children play the sport. Using PopFoam, a type of hard foam made out of a material similar to that used in Crocs, Jahnigen designed a durable soccer ball that is nearly impossible to destroy. Not only does the ball inflate itself, it has proven it can withstand even the harshest of conditions.

Sting covered the cost of development and also provided the name for the ball, the One World Futbol. That label is borrowed from the Police's hit song, One World (Not Three).

"The goal of the One World Futbol project is to distribute indestructible soccer balls wherever they're needed," Sting says in a promotional video. "To impoverished areas, refugee camps, conflict zones, and U.N. hotspots all over the world."

The balls, which Jahnigen estimates should last 30 years, allow children to throw away the waddled-up pieces of trash and water bottles that had been passing as soccer balls.

This text will be replaced

Jahnigen has produced about 50,000 balls thus far and dropped them in more than 120 countries. But cost is an issue, especially compared to cheaper, less durable balls.

Still, the demand is extremely high, as organizations across the world are bring the balls to all corners of the globe.

"A child can play to their heart’s content where there are no content hearts," Jahnigen told the New York Times. "We don’t understand that having a ball is like the best PlayStation 3 or a rocket to Mars."

To read more about the One World Futbol Project, see here.

(H/T to Yardbarker)

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to read them first!

Full Story >>

Tags:
Road, Sting

Kentucky fans may never forgive Christian Laettner for the physical and emotional toll he exacted on the Wildcats in the 1992 Elite Eight. Not only did Laettner break the hearts of Big Blue with a buzzer-beating shot, his stomp on Kentucky's Aminu Timberlake added some serious salt to the Wildcats' wounds.

Laettner has since apologized for his dirty play and called it a "big mistake." This week Laettner extended the proverbial olive branch again, at a fundraiser for Duke and Kentucky supporters in Atlanta on the night before the anticipated matchup between the Blue Devils and the Wildcats.

Laettner let the five highest bidders at the event pose for a photo (below) while stomping on his chest, the Advocate-Messenger of Kentucky reported. The proceeds from the contest went to the V Foundation for Cancer Research.

Yes, the Kentucky fans in the picture are wearing T-shirts that read, "I Still Hate Laettner."

This isn't the first time that Laettner has been on the wrong side of a stomp. This summer he let former Kentucky star Anthony Davis pose for a photo with his foot on Laettner's chest.

While Kentucky fans aren't too fond of Laettner, many might be surprised to find out that Laettner was nearly a prodigy of the Wildcats' coach, John Calipari. Laettner said he attended a camp in Pittsburgh as a high schooler, and Calipari (who was an assistant at Pitt at the time) was also there. Laettner idolized Calipari, and he even included considered going to Pitt solely because of Calipari.

Now, Laettner has enjoyed watching Calipari from afar.

"I am not surprised at all with the level of successs he has anywhere he goes," Laettner said. "He gets very good players. He is a very good recruiter. He gets high-level players, and he is able to get them to play a certain way in a short period of time because a lot of his kids leave early (for the NBA). He regroups and has another good team the next year, so I just think he is a great coach."

While Laettner's gesture this week won't completely heal old wounds, it is certainly a "stomp" in the right direction.

(H/T to The Advocate-Messenger)

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to read them first!

Full Story >>

Mike Ehredt's long journey is over, and in his trail is an incredible memorial to the more than 2,000 American service members who died in Afghanistan.

The 51-year-old Ehredt, an Army veteran himself, spent the past 10 weeks running from northern Minnesota to the Gulf of Mexico. His journey was exactly 2,140 miles, and for every mile he ran he planted a flag in the ground to honor a fallen service member.

Two years ago Ehredt made a similar journey, running 4,424 miles from Oregon to Maine and planting flags for those who died in Iraq.

"It's to honor and say thank you to those that died in Iraq and Afghanistan," Ehredt told ABC News. "I stop each mile, put a flag down that bears the name, rank, and hometown, in the numerical order of their deaths, and it creates an invisible wall across the country. I just wanted to do something for them, something genuine and pure that no one would replicate."

Ehredt's trip took eight weeks, making his pace roughly one marathon per day. Not bad for a grandfather of three.

On his journey from the Canadian border to Galveston, Texas, Ehredt stayed with 67 host families, most of whom were associated with the American Legion or veterans' groups. Ehredt said he drew joy and inspiration from these families, as well as the various individuals who joined him along the way.

"I can honestly say if I was this enthused about my work when I was working for the post office ... I would never have retired," Ehredt told ABC News. "I'm enthused about getting up every day."

To learn more about Ehredt and Project American Run, see here.

(H/T to Daily Mail)

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to read them first!

Full Story >>

The Philadelphia Marathon lived up to its town's reputation as the "City of Brotherly Love" this week when it announced that it would open up 3,000 slots for runners who had registered for the ING New York Marathon, which was cancelled last week due to the aftereffects of Hurricane Sandy.

The Philadelphia Marathon, set for Nov. 18, is sold out, but race executives decided to open 3,000 spots for runners who were registered to run the New York Marathon.

"We are sympathetic to those who were unable to participate in the NYC Marathon,” Philadelphia Marathon executive director Melanie Johnson said in a statement. "It was a careful decision that took into account many factors such as the capacity of the course to accommodate the increased field of competitors, maintaining the quality of experience, and the turn-around time to secure additional supplies and resources."

Runners who were registered in New York have until 5 p.m. Thursday to sign up for a lottery on the Philadelphia Marathon's website. Out of that pool, 3,000 participants will be randomly chosen to participate in the Philadelphia Marathon.

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to read them first!

Full Story >>