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Tuesday’s Morning Mashup: Cubs mocked as they unveil new mascot, ‘Clark’

01.14.14 at 8:00 am ET
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Welcome to Tuesday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

TUESDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NHL: Maple Leafs at Bruins, 7 p.m. (NESN)
NHL: Flyers at Sabres, 7:30 p.m. (NBCSN)
NBA: Kings at Pacers, 7 p.m. (NBATV)
College basketball: Wisconsin at Indians, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Georgia at Florida, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: St. John’s at DePaul, 7 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: VCU at George Washington, 7 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Oklahoma at Kansas State, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Penn State at Michigan, 8 p.m. (BTN)
College basketball: Kentucky at Arkansas, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Temple at Cincinnati, 9 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Butler at Creighton, 9 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Pittsburgh at Georgia Tech, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
Tennis: Australian Open, 9 p.m. (ESPN2)

AROUND THE WEB:

– The Cubs officially introduced their new mascot, a cub named “Clark,” on Monday night at a charity event, and the reviews are mixed.

The team says Clark — named after the street on which Wrigley Field is located — came about after surveys found that fans would like the park to be more family-friendly. However, many in Chicago are mocking the cartoon bear, and as of early Monday morning, a poll at the Chicago Tribune indicated 75 percent of almost 10,000 respondents do not like the mascot.

The Cubs, for their part, appear sensitive to fans’ criticism, explaining that Clark will not stand atop the dugout or otherwise cause a distraction during games. The bear will greet fans at the park’s entrance and be available in his own clubhouse at Wrigley Field.

“The Cubs are thrilled to welcome Clark as the team’s official mascot,” Cubs senior director of marketing Alison Miller said in a statement. “Clark is a young, friendly Cub who can’t wait to interact with our other young Cubs fans. He’ll be a welcoming presence for families at Wrigley Field and an excellent ambassador for the team in the community.”

The Angels, Dodgers and Yankees are the only three remaining MLB teams without a mascot.

Robert Griffin III recently took to Facebook to take on his critics and defend himself for wearing a sleeve and glove during games, appearing in commercials and getting attention everywhere he goes.

Wrote the quarterback: “You think I want it to be national news that I visit a beach? Or shop at Walmart? Or wore red shoes instead of green yesterday? Well, I don’t. I’m “striving” for greatness just like my fellow teammates do. The “attention” that comes with being a QB in the league is what you are referring to. All the press conferences and talking to the media? Mandated by the league to have a press conference every week during the season and during team activities during the offseason.”

Bears tight end Martellus Bennett had the same reaction as some fans when he implied that RGIII was being overly sensitive. Tweeted Bennett on Monday: “Lame,” and “Who still has Facebook anyways? Lol. I’m going to release a statement on my MySpace Music Page.”

Bennett didn’t stop the sarcasm later, adding: “Was it not politically correct of me to say or do that? Good thing I’m not into politics.”

Bennett finished his series of tweets with this: “My social experiment for the day is complete. Thank you all for participating.”

— NFL legends Deion Sanders and Jerry Rice will draft the players selected to the Pro Bowl and form two teams for the Jan. 26 game in Honolulu, in the league’s attempt to make the game more appealing to fans.

Sanders did his part to spice things up when on Monday he tweeted that he plans to suit up for the game.

Sanders also tweeted at Cardinals cornerback Patrick Peterson that he is reserving jersey No. 21 for the game.

Rice accepted Sanders’ challenge and didn’t back down.

 

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On Jan. 14, 2007, the Patriots traveled to San Diego and knocked off the Chargers, 24-21, to advance to the AFC championship game. Which receiver — signed as a free agent from the Chargers in the previous offseason — had a huge game for the Patriots, catching a 4-yard touchdown pass with 4:36 remaining and hauling in a 49-yard pass that set up the game-winning 31-yard field goal by Stephen Gostkowski with 1:10 left?

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “We never had a single conversation with the Patriots in which they threatened to release him if he didn’€™t accept the injured reserve designation. Spikes has been a great teammate, and nobody can question the passion with which he plays the game, or how important he has been to the Patriots’ success. Although he is disappointed that he won’€™€™t be able to line up alongside his teammates this weekend against the Broncos, he won’€™€™t let these rumors serve as a distraction and has no intention of making any further comment whatsoever concerning any of these issues.” Gary Uberstine, agent for Patriots linebacker Brandon Spikes

STAT OF THE DAY: 69 – Consecutive home wins for the Baylor women’s basketball team before top-ranked UConn posted a 66-55 victory Monday night in Waco, Texas

‘NET RESULTS (mobile users, check the website to see the videos): Seahawks fullback Derrick Coleman, who is legally deaf, is the star of an inspirational commercial for Duracell. Says Coleman, who was not drafted in 2012 out of UCLA: “They didn’t call my name, told me it was over. But I’ve been deaf since I was 3, so I didn’t listen.”

A pastor who is a 49ers fan delivers a one-minute sermon in order to be able to watch the start of Sunday’s win over the Panthers.

From a hockey game in Germany’s Deutsche Eishockey Liga, Krefeld Pingue’s Adam Courchine shows some impressive stickwork by flicking teammate Kevin Clark‘s stick up and into Clark’s waiting hands while the pair skate back on defense against Adler Mannheim.

A Federal Hockey League game between Danville and Watertown devolves into a brawl that includes the coaches trading shoves from the benches.

TRIVIA ANSWER: Reche Caldwell

SOOTHING SOUNDS: Ellis Paul was born on this day in 1965.

Read More: Clark the Cub, deion sanders, Jerry Rice, Martellus Bennett