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Shelby Osborne/Twitter

Shelby Osborne, a Jeffersonville, Indiana native who played defensive back for her  high school football team, has signed on to play NAIA collegiate football this fall. 

Osborne committed this week to play football at Campbellsville University in Taylor County. It’s believed she’ll be the first female to play on the defensive side of the ball at the college level since mid-1990s when Joyce Muntari played linebacker for two junior colleges.

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California Chrome is the 3 to 5 early favorite to win the Belmont Stakes and become horse racing's 12th Triple Crown champion.

The Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner will break from the No. 2 post under Victor Espinoza on Saturday at Belmont Park. Eleven Belmont winners have come out of that post, the last being Tabasco Cat in 1994.

Trainer Art Sherman says he’s happy with the draw.

"It gives you a chance to see who’s going to have the speed and where you’re laying going into the first turn," explains Sherman.

Wicked Strong is the 6 to 1 second choice and drew post No. 9.  The colt finished fourth  in the Derby and sat out the Preakness.

Tonalist was made the third betting choice at 8 to 1 odds and will break from the No. 11 post.

Eleven horses are entered in the Belmont Stakes.

WKU Athletics

The WKU Hilltoppers have added another SEC opponent to their 2016 football schedule.

The school’s athletic department announced Wednesday the ‘Toppers will be taking on Alabama on September 10, 2016 in Tuscaloosa. 

The two teams last met in 2012, when the Crimson Tide blanked WKU 35-0 en route to a national title that year.  Also in 2016, the Hilltoppers will face Vanderbilt as the Commodores become the first SEC team ever to visit L.T. Smith Stadium in Bowling Green.

A WKU-bound high school senior has been named the Gatorade Kentucky Baseball Player of the Year.

Henderson County third baseman and outfielder Kaleb Duckworth is batting .447 with seven home runs, 35 runs batted in, and 38 stolen bases. The Gatorade player of the year award is given annually to a player who demonstrates athletic excellence, academic accomplishments, and exemplary character.

Duckworth, who has a 3.8 G.P.A., will enroll in WKU this fall.

Duckworth and his Henderson County High School teammates are taking on Christian County Tuesday in the semifinals of the Second Region Tournament.

California Chrome will be able to race after all.

There had been some doubt about whether the winner of this year's Kentucky Derby and the Preakness would compete in the Belmont Stakes, the third leg of horseracing's Triple Crown.

The thoroughbred has run and won his last six races wearing equine nasal strips. It was uncertain whether the stewards who oversee the June 7 event in New York would allow the strips, out of concern they offer the horse an unfair boost.

California Chrome Wins The Kentucky Derby

May 3, 2014

California Chrome won the 140th running of Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs in Louisville Saturday. The horse was favored to win, despite quirks that set him apart from his more traditional competitors.

"Derby dreams do come true," an announcer said after the race.

As NBC Sports reports:

Saddle Up For The 140th Kentucky Derby

May 2, 2014

The Kentucky Derby is the first jewel in horse racing’s Triple Crown. A field of 19 horses will take to the track at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky, on Saturday evening for the 140th edition of the Run for the Roses.

Joe Drape is there, as he is every year, for The New York Times. He discusses the field with Here & Now’s Sacha Pfeiffer. His picks are Wicked Strong, Intense Holiday and California Chrome.

Post Positions, Odds Set for Derby

May 1, 2014
Churchill Downs

California Chrome has been made the early 5-2 favorite for the 140th Kentucky Derby, with Hopportunity the second choice in the full field of 20 horses. Trained by 77 year old Art Sherman, California Chrome drew the #5 post. Eight horses have won from there, most recently Funny Cide in 2003.

Hopportunity drew the #11 post and is 6-1 for Saturday's race. He's trained by Bob Baffert.

Starting in the #1 post on the rail is Vicar's In Trouble with jockey Rosie Napravnik up. Wicked Strong, named for the victims of last year's Boston Marathon bombings, is the 8-1 third choice and will break from the 20th post on the far outside of the track.

WKU Athletics

The men’s tennis program at WKU has become a victim of university budget cuts.  Director of Athletics Todd Stewart announced late Tuesday the intercollegiate men’s tennis program is being eliminated for the 2014-2015 academic year. With the loss of men’s tennis, WKU is left with 18 sponsored sports as it begins its first year competing in Conference USA.

"This is certainly a disappointment," Stewart said. "Unfortunately, the cumulative effect of three consecutive years of cuts to the overall athletics budget forces us to make difficult decisions. We have actually increased both our ticket and sponsorship revenue in each of the last two years along with private donor support, but cuts to the athletics budget have lessened the impact of our growth.”

Student athletes in the men’s tennis program will have the chance to transfer to another school to keep playing tennis without having to sit out a year. Scholarship athletes who want to stay at WKU will have their scholarships honored through their senior year.

WKU Athletics

Fresh off an NCAA postseason appearance, the WKU women’s basketball team is looking forward to another tournament.  The school announced Thursday that Diddle Arena will serve as a host site for the opening round of the women’s preseason NIT tournament in November. 

“Not only being in the tournament, but having the chance to be one of the few schools to host is a sign of the national respect that our program has garnered in the women’s basketball world,” said WKU head coach Michelle Clark-Heard. “I am so excited for our team and our fan base to have the chance to have this event in E.A. Diddle Arena.”

The Lady Toppers have a 6-3 record all time in the preseason NIT tournament, which began in its current form in 1994.

The WNIT preseason tournament begins November 14th.

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