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Great deal: Dodgers fan buys World Series tickets for $9.08

Tickets to a World Series game are always a hot item, and demand for the first two games in Los Angeles this week caused prices to soar into four-digit territory. Meanwhile, a Dodgers fan in California bought his tickets for $9.08.

>> Read more trending news

That’s not a typo: $9.08.

Jordan Benedict was searching for tickets for Game 2 on StubHub when he stumbled across the incredible deal.

According to TicketIQ, a firm that tracks ticket sales and availability, the average asking price for games in Los Angeles were $3,164 per ticket. What Benedict found seemed too good to be true.

“I knew these tickets must have been posted at the wrong price, but it was too good to not make an effort of trying to buy them,” Benedict wrote on his Facebook page. “I completed the purchase and was delivered the tickets to my email and the app.”

>> World Series tickets soar in price

Just to be sure, since it “was such an insane deal,” Benedict contacted StubHub, which initially told him they would refund his money. But after talking with a supervisor, Benedict’s $9.08 price was honored, but in a different section of Dodger Stadium, KCBS reported.

“I know ticketing services get a bad wrap (sic) for multiple reasons, but StubHub really stepped it up and did something amazing to honor the purchase I made,” Benedict wrote on Facebook. “With that being said, I am going to the World Series for $9.08!”

Benedict got to watch a classic, as the Houston Astros defeated the Dodgers 7-6 in 11 innings on Wednesday night to even the best-of-seven series at 1-1.

NFL wide receiver walks to work after bike is stolen

Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster is now walking to practice because he said someone stole his bike.

>> Read more trending news

Smith-Schuster took to Twitter on Tuesday to post a video letting his followers know that his bike was stolen and he was walking to practice.

The tweet was followed by another showing him riding his bike Monday while wearing his Steelers helmet.

Smith-Schuster, the NFL’s youngest player at 20 years old, is known for riding his bike to work.

Teammate Antonio Brown tweeted his support in helping Smith-Schuster find his bike. Brown is offering two tickets to a Steelers home game for whoever returns the bike.

Jim Larranaga: 'I am Coach-3' in FBI college basketball probe

University of Miami coach Jim Larranaga said his legal team believes he is “Coach-3,” as noted in the Department of Justice report about the FBI investigation into college basketball’s underbelly.

>> Read more trending news

“I am grateful we have come to that conclusion,” said Larranaga, “as I know I did nothing wrong, and it is comforting to know none of my assistants are connected in any way.” He added that the U.S. attorney’s office has not confirmed the identity of “Coach-3.”

In a news conference at the Watsco Center, Larranaga addressed the media for the first time since the Sept. 26 complaint was unveiled in New York. Uncharacteristically, he read from a prepared statement. He fielded questions afterward from reporters about the emotional impact, but referred all inquiries about the investigation to his statement, which said he appreciated that the media had a job to do, but that he would not offer comment.

Larranaga’s full statement: 

“I cannot state more emphatically that I absolutely have no knowledge of any wrongdoing by any member of our staff and I certainly have never engaged in the conduct that some have speculated about,” Larranaga said, holding a piece of paper with both hands.

“I have tried to live every single one of my 68 years on this earth with integrity, character, and humility. … To have those values that I cherish so dearly even questioned, is disheartening and disappointing.”

“Coach-3,” in the FBI report, was said to know about an Adidas executive and others conspiring to funnel some $150,000 to a 2018 recruit, later learned to be Orlando-based five-star wing Nassir Little. Little and his father signed statements, provided to The Post by Larranaga’s legal team, saying they accepted no money, never discussed payment with any of the men charged, and they and Miami did nothing wrong.

>> Related: Auburn, Oklahoma State, USC coaches among 10 charged with corruption

Asked about his relationship with former Adidas executive Jim Gatto, who was one of 10 men indicted by the FBI on conspiracy and fraud charges, Larranaga declined to comment, referring to the statement.

“It’s been a strain, physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually,” Larranaga said. “It’s something that’s there. I have to deal with it. I have the support of my wife and a wonderful family. I have the support of the university, my staff and players.”

Both Ja’Quan Newton and Bruce Brown, the two players Miami made available to the media, said they were not aware of the details of the investigation. They said practice has been as usual, and they’ve noticed no change in their coach.

“Around us, ‘Coach L’ isn’t going to show he’s hurt,” Newton said. “He’s so happy to be around us.”

Larranaga said he briefed his players on Sept. 26, along with UM Athletics Director Blake James.

“They have nothing to do with this,” Larranaga said. “It hasn’t been talked about since.”

Asked how the investigation has affected recruiting, Larranaga said it has been a negative, but his staff is “very strong and resilient, and we’ll figure out a way to recruit successfully.”

UM does not have a verbal commitment for 2018. It had an official visit set up the weekend of Sept. 9 with five-star point guard Immanuel Quickley, but it was canceled when Hurricane Irma forced UM to evacuate the campus.

Asked if he has received messages of support from colleagues, Larranaga answered, “Yes.”

Asked if that has helped, Larranaga answered with the same flat, “Yes.”

Trump says there's 'no leadership in NFL'

President Donald Trump on Monday lamented what he called a lack of leadership in the NFL days after the league’s commissioner said no plans are in place to force football players to stand during the national anthem.

>> Read more trending news

“Two dozen NFL players continue to kneel during the National Anthem, showing total disrespect to our Flag & Country,” Trump tweeted on Monday morning. “No leadership in NFL!”

NFL commissioner Roger Goddell said last week that he believes players “should” stand for the anthem, but that team owners and other officials are focused on understanding the issues that are prompting the protests. He said that players will not be penalized if they choose to kneel during the anthem.

"I think our clubs all see this the same way -- we want our players to stand, we're going to encourage them to stand and we're going to continue to work on these issues in the community," Goodell said Tuesday at a news conference following the Fall League Meeting in New York.

Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick first started kneeling during the anthem last year, to protest police violence against minorities. The protest got mixed reactions, but other NFL players -- and players in other sports -- have since followed Kaepernick’s lead, to protest inequality.

>> Related: NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell wants players to stand during national anthem, memo says

“They're talking about criminal justice reform,” Goddell said last week. “They're talking about changes that, I think, will make our communities better -- that there's bipartisan support for and that need focus. … They're talking about equality issues, making sure we're doing everything we possibly can to give people an opportunity, whether it's an education or economic and what we can do to try to effectuate that. And we believe, with the players, that we can help them, we can support them. And those are our issues, national issues, American issues that are all important."

Trump suggested last month that NFL team owners should fire players who refuse to stand during the anthem, telling a crowd in Alabama that “that’s a total disrespect for our heritage.”

Goddell said last week that players “are not doing this in any way to be disrespectful to the flag, but they also understand how it's being interpreted, and we're dealing with those underlying issues."

Homecoming queen kicks game-winning field goal

It was a great week for a Texas high school student. She was named homecoming queen last week, and on Friday she kicked five extra points and the game-winning field goal for her football team.

>> Read more trending news

Claire Jeffress was the clutch kicker for Dawson High School on Friday, converting a 30-yard field goal with 1:08 to play to snap a tie and give the Eagles a 38-35 victory against Pearland.

“Homecoming queen knocks it through, Dawson wins,” Dawson head coach Eric Wells told the Houston Chronicle. “You have to love that.”

Wells said Dawson “doesn’t get rattled” during games. 

“There wasn’t even a question that she was going to kick it,” he said.

Besides, it wasn’t even Jeffress’ first game-winning kick. She made a go-ahead extra point on Oct. 5 to give Dawson a 14-13 victory against George Ranch.

Jeffress has been playing football since she was a seventh-grader. She told TMC News in January that she felt she needed to prove herself to play on the boys squad.

“I didn't want to make the team because I was a girl -- I didn't want it to be some special factor," she told TMC News. “I wanted to make it because I deserved to be on the team. They understood that.”

On the night she was crowned homecoming queen -- her homecoming dress was adorned with a football -- Jeffress was 6-for-6 on extra points as Dawson defeated Brazoswood 51-16. 

So kicking a game-winner on Friday was not a pressure situation, she said.

“I just wanted to do what I've always done and not think of it as any big deal,” Jeffress told the Chronicle. “My team had faith in me, and they were going to block for me, and the snap and the hold were going to be good, so I just had to do my job.”

49ers icon Dwight Clark, battling ALS, asks fans for ‘prayers and thoughts’

Former San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Dwight Clark, whose iconic reception in the 1981 NFC Championship Game will be forever known as “The Catch,” gave an emotional speech Sunday as his team honored him during halftime of Sunday’s game against Dallas.

>> Read more trending news

Clark, 60, is fighting amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease. “Dwight Clark Day” at Levi’s Stadium gave the former NFL star a chance to say thanks and reunite with his former teammates, the Mercury News reported.

“I think you all know I’m going through a little thing right now,” Clark told the crowd. “And I need your prayers and thoughts. I appreciate those that you’ve been giving me.”

Clark spoke from a private suite at Levi’s Stadium during halftime of the 49ers’ a 40-10 loss to Dallas, the team he beat for “The Catch.”

Clark is in a wheelchair because of the terminal neuromuscular condition that affects his ability to move, speak, eat and breathe, the Mercury News reported. Clark revealed in March that he was battling the fatal disease. The 49ers asked him what they could do, and Clark asked for a reunion with his teammates, “So I could see them one more time.” 

Thirty-seven members of that 1981 Super Bowl champion squad returned to pay tribute, along with former team owner Eddie DeBartolo Jr., the Mercury News reported.

Clark is best known for his 6-yard grab with 58 seconds left against the Dallas Cowboys in the NFC Championship Game on Jan. 10, 1982. 

The 49ers would win five Super Bowls, but the catch and victory was the springboard for the team’s future successes.

“He’s very well known to all you 49ers fans and, oh, yeah, to you Cowboys fans, too,” said Hall of Fame quarterback Joe Montana, who threw that game-winning pass. “Any time you turn on the NFL and you’re watching TV, you’ll see him flying high in the back of that end zone and making one of the most iconic catches in NFL history.”

Justin Timberlake will headline Super Bowl LII halftime show

Singer Justin Timberlake will be returning to the Super Bowl stage for the first time since he was part of Janet Jackson’s “wardrobe malfunction” in 2004, the NFL confirmed Sunday.

>> Read more trending news

Timberlake, who will be performing in his third Super Bowl halftime show, will be the featured artist during the intermission of the NFL’s showcase game on Feb. 4, 2018 in Minneapolis. He previously appeared at Super Bowl XXXV in Tampa in 2001, but it was his appearance with Jackson at Super Bowl XXXVIII in Houston in 2004 that caused controversy.

Related: Justin Timberlake in talks to do 2018 Super Bowl halftime show, report says

An estimated 140 million people were watching the show when at the end, Timberlake popped off part of Jackson’s corset, exposing her breast. The incident, later described as a “wardrobe malfunction,” led to numerous complaints and a large fine by the Federal Communications Commission, The New York Times reported. The fine was eventually vacated by an appeals court, the Times reported. For Jackson, there was more fallout. Rolling Stone reported she was essentially blacklisted, which affected her music career.

During an interview televised during NBC’s “Sunday Night Football” broadcast, Mike Tirico asked Timberlake if the NFL had addressed the incident with him.

The singer smiled and said, “That won’t happen again.”

Timberlake, the 10-time Grammy Award-winning singer and songwriter, rose to fame with the boy band ’N Sync. He has since had solo hits such as “Sexy Back,” “Cry Me a River” and “Rock Your Body.”

Timberlake also had a hit with “Can’t Stop the Feeling” on the soundtrack for the animated movie, “Trolls.”

While Jackson remains banned from singing at the Super Bowl. Several people on Twitter were angered by the choice of Timberlake. 

“It had better damn well be a 15 minute apology to Janet Jackson for hanging her out to dry in 2004,” one person tweeted. 

Another tweeted that Timberlake was “still ensuring white privilege remains in style in 2017. Meanwhile, Janet Jackson is still left in the cold.”

“ My only request is that you don't perform any of the music inspired by her brother or any Black artist. You love our culture, but disrespect our people.”

2017 World Series: 5 fun facts

The Houston Astros punched a ticket to the World Series on Saturday night with a 4-0 victory in Game 7 against the New York Yankees in the American League Championship Series.

>> Read more trending news

Game 1 is Tuesday night in Los Angeles, and already this will be a historic Fall Classic. Here’s how:

Astros complete unprecedented double

By winning Game 7, the Astros became the first major-league team to reach the World Series by winning pennants in both leagues.

In 2005, Houston defeated the St. Louis Cardinals in six games to win the National League pennant. The Astros entered the postseason as a wild-card team and defeated the Atlanta Braves in four games to reach the National League Championship Series.That elusive winThe Astros' next win in the World Series will be their first. Houston was swept in four games by the Chicago White Sox in 2005.

The century club

The Dodgers won 104 games during the 2017 regular season, while the Astros captured 101 victories. It’s the first World Series showcasing a pair of 100-game winners since 1970 when the Baltimore Orioles (108-54) defeated the Cincinnati Reds (102-60) in five games.Playoff historyThe Dodgers and Astros have met in the playoffs before, but both as members of the National League.In the 1981 season, a 50-day players strike erased nearly 40 percent of the schedule. Major League Baseball decided to split the season and declared that the champions of each half meet in a first-round of the playoffs. In a weird way, this postseason was the ancestor of the divisional series now employed by MLB.In 1981, the Dodgers, who won the first half of the NL West Division, faced the Astros, who took the second half. The Dodgers qualified for the postseason with a 36-21 record in the first half of the season and went just 27-26 in the second half. Houston, meanwhile, went 28-29 in the first half but took the division title in the second half with a 33-20 mark.The two teams met to determine the overall NL West champion, and the Dodgers prevailed in a five-game series.Rookie influence

If the Dodgers’ Cody Bellinger wins NL Rookie of the Year honors as expected, he will become the first award winner to play in the World Series as a rookie since San Francisco’s Buster Posey competed in 2010.

Florida State football coach trades verbal jabs with fan after loss

It has been a frustrating season for Florida State football coach Jimbo Fisher, who has watched his team stumble to a 2-4 start, including its first 0-3 start at home since 1974.

>> Read more trending news

That frustration boiled over Saturday after Fisher and a fan at Tallahassee’s Doak Campbell Stadium got into a verbal altercation after the Seminoles’ 31-28 loss to Louisville.

As Fisher exited the field, the fan yelled that the Seminoles needed to make changes to their staff. “Get new coaches!” the fan yelled from the first row, The Tallahassee Democrat reported. Fisher walked over to the stands and yelled back, inviting the fan to “walk … down here and say it,” the Democrat reported.

In his postgame news conference, Fisher said he should not have argued with the fan but felt obligated to defend his Seminoles.

"Just support, you know what I'm saying," Fisher said. "There's no reason to be nasty. But at the same time, defending players and people you're with, I'm in charge of them. I love them like a father. When they say something to your family, you take up for it."

FSU is now in danger of missing a bowl game for the first time since 1982, ESPN reported.

“I mean, I understand (the frustration),” Fisher said. "That's what's part of this. If you're a fan, are you going to be a loyal fan or not? Just keep fighting with us. We ain't quitting on you. Please don't quit on us. We're going to keep fighting, scratching, coaching, playing, and you see the heart and desire of those kids. And understand something: What if that's your kid? If that was one of your kids or your nephew or your cousin or your friend, keep supporting them, you know what I mean? Just keep supporting because it ain't that.

“When success happens, (fans) put you too high, and once failures happen, they put you too low. That goes with the territory,” Fisher said. “We're going to keep coaching the same way because there's no quit in us, either.”

World Series tickets for Dodger Stadium games soar in price

Emotions among fans in Southern California were sky-high after the Los Angeles Dodgers nailed down their first World Series berth in 29 years.

>> Read more trending news

Also rising are the cost of World Series tickets.

According to TicketIQ, a firm that tracks ticket sales and availability, the average asking price for games in Los Angeles are $3,164 per ticket. Only the Chicago Cubs last year, with an average asking price for games at Wrigley Field, had a higher amount, at $3,480, ESPN reported.

StubHub had several large sales for Game 1 of the World Series, which will be played in Los Angeles for the first time since 1988. One fan paid $37,804 (including fees) for a pair of front-row seats behind the Dodgers’ dugout, ESPN reported. Another paid $72,008 (also including fees) for four seats in the second row behind the Dodgers’dugout.

According to reseller Vivid Seats, the cheapest ticket available for Game 1 on Tuesday night is a standing room-only pass for $1,002, before fees. There was only one of those tickets available as of late Saturday morning.

Prices could even jump higher if the New York Yankees defeat the Houston Astros in tonight’s Game 7 of the American League Championship Series. The Dodgers and Yankees have met 11 times in the World Series since the two longtime rivals faced each other for the first time in 1941, when the Dodgers were based in Brooklyn. The Yankees have beaten the Dodgers in eight of those World Series.

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