1st Down: Aaron Judge has a case coming up on Friday. No, this isn’t some stupid pun this time. His arbitration hearing will take place to determine how much he is going to be paid by the New York Yankees in 2022, and he set himself up pretty perfectly on Thursday with yet another statement. Judge helped the Yankees take down dreaded rivals Houston 7-6 when he hit a 3-0 pitch into the corner of left field to allow Jose Trevino to come home. It was the Bronx Bombers’ ninth walk-off win in 70 outings this season, and it gave him yet another argument to make ahead of the ‘trial’ to come. Judge is asking for $21 million, while the team wants it lowered by $4. We’ll see who comes out on top, but no matter what he’s shown he is worth the money. That much is for sure.
2nd Down: Arch Manning is headed to the SEC. Eventually, that is. After months of conjecture about where the next member of the Manning quarterback dynasty would play his college ball, he made his decisions known on Thursday by selecting Texas. The Longhorns, who are slated to join the SEC in 2025 by most, went 5-7 last season under head coach Steven Sarkisian, but they pulled off a coup by landing the QB with the massive name. Manning, who had 72 touchdowns and racked up well over 5,000 yards in three years of high school ball, will follow his tight end Will Randle to suit up for the Horns.
3rd Down: One day after falling in a close-run game with the Arkansas Razorbacks, the Ole Miss Rebels got the job done and punched their ticket to the College Baseball World Series with a 2-0 win on Thursday in Omaha. The win was led by Dylan DeLucia’s impeccable outing on the mound as he threw all nine innings against his SEC West foes and allowed just four runs (with no walks) in the clincher. Kevin Graham’s double in the fourth and Calvin Harris singled in the seventh to provide all the run support DeLucia would need on this afternoon. The Rebels now will face future SEC rivals Oklahoma in the best-of-three Championship Series beginning on Saturday.
4th Down: Rory McIlroy has been playing some really strong golf of late, and he maintained that form on Thursday in the first round of the Travelers Championship PGA Tour event. McIlroy’s name has been in the news a lot for both his play and his feud with the LIV Series, and he kept his name in the headlines by shooting a 62 to open the tournament. Xander Schauffele and Martin Laird are a shot back as McIlroy looks to follow up a win at the Canadian Open two weeks ago and a top-five at the US Open last week.