You can attend Dwyane Wade's fantasy camp

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You can attend Dwyane Wade's fantasy camp

From Comcast SportsNet Monday, August 22, 2011

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. (AP)-- Dwyane Wade(notes) has the basketball on the wing. Tom Crean is setting up a play. Scattered around the court are a number of players, many nodding in unison.

No, this wasnt Marquette, circa 2003.

Welcome to the inaugural Dwyane Wade Fantasy Camp, where 100 or so men between the ages of 35 to 68 are spending four days with Wade, Hall of Famer Chris Mullin, Miami Hurricanes coach Jim Larranaga, Florida Atlantic coach Mike Jarvis, former Duke star Jay Williams and a slew of otherswith everything taking place at a posh Miami Beach hotel, all for 12,500 per person.

We learned a lot from each other. Continue to do, said Crean, Wades coach at Marquette and now the coach at Indiana. And hes not only a player that Ive coached and a person that I love. Im inspired by what he does. Im inspired by what he does on the court and looking at what hes done as a person, as a man, as a father, as a businessman, those things are just fantastic.

So through Sunday, this group of campers is getting a close-up look at what Wades all about.

The star Miami Heat guard is mingling with the guys, taking pictures, teasing them about their games, and giving them a glimpse of what makes him tick. On Friday, the first full day of the camp (it began Thursday with orientation and a player draft, among other events), Wade and Crean spent more than 30 minutes breaking down aspects of pick-and-roll offense before taking some questions and sending the campers off for some games.

Just like old times, said Wade of working with the coach who helped him to the 2003 NCAA Final Four.

Its all happening inside a massive hotel ballroom, with three full courts set up inside. Wade was worried at first that the ceiling15 feet, maybe a bit higherwould be too low to allow for decent play. That concern was quickly erased when the 2006 NBA finals MVP took some shots of his own, his normal arc having plenty of room to spare.

This is the first year and were going to get better from here, Wade said. At the end of the day, like I told all of the campers here, we all have something in commonand its the love of the game. Everyones here because of the love of the game.

Part of Fridays session was a question-and-answer period, where Wade let the campers ask whatever they wanted. One particular question seemed to bring out an especially good answer, when someone asked how he can get better.

Ive done a lot of great things in eight years. So what? Wade said. Ive got to figure out in the next wave of my career, how do I get better? In my mind, I have what I feel is a next level. And I have a blueprint in front of me. I have the Michael Jordans of the world. I have the Kobe Bryants of the world. I have these guys that are showing whats the next level.

And he said his teammates with the Heat, especially LeBron James(notes) and Chris Bosh(notes), will join him in a quest to keep improvingwhich is what he was trying to teach his campers how to do.

The only way the Miami Heat gets better is if individually I come back better, if individually LeBron comes back better, if individually Chris comes back better, Wade said. So going forward, I know that every year, my role might change. At the end of the day, its about team success. Individual success, Ive had it, Ive done it. Team success is way better.

Wade has had a busy summer, with trips to Europe and China, business in New York and Los Angeles, and an upcoming Wades World weekend in Chicago ahead, along with more appearances in September. He also worked a number of camps for kids, and found a lot of what works with them doesnt necessarily hold with the older customers.

Its very different, Wade said. Obviously with the kids, theres a lot of whistles being blown. These guys are veterans of camps. They kind of know what they like. They know what theyre expecting. We asked them what they want to do, and they want to play. So theyll be very sore by Sunday.

Report: Shanahan 'almost certain' to accept 49ers' offer

Report: Shanahan 'almost certain' to accept 49ers' offer

Atlanta Falcons offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan is reportedly “almost certain” to accept the 49ers’ offer to become head coach.

Shanahan is the lone remaining candidate among the six individuals who interviewed with 49ers executives Jed York and Paraag Marathe. The 49ers plan for a second interview with Shanahan and a job offer, a source told CSNBayArea.com. Shanahan is expected to accept the 49ers’ offer, reports Michael Silver of the NFL Network, citing sources familiar with both parties.

The 49ers continued to work Tuesday evening on the process of narrowing down the general manager choices, a source said. Shanahan is expected to play a role in the select the team’s next GM, sources said.

On Tuesday, Seattle offensive line coach Tom Cable and Seahawks co-director of player personnel Trent Kirchner removed their names from consideration for the vacant coach and general manager positions. The 49ers fired Chip Kelly and Trent Baalke after the 49ers' 2-14 season.

One source said Cable and Kirchner believed the 49ers were using them as leverage to hire Shanahan. Cable interviewed with 49ers co-chair Denise DeBartolo York over the phone on Tuesday, NFL Network reported.

The 49ers are allowed to interview Shanahan for a second time after the Falcons’ NFC Championship game against the Green Bay Packers on Sunday. The 49ers are prohibited from hiring or making a formal contract offer to Shanahan until the Falcons' season has concluded.

The top remaining candidates for the general manager job are believed to be Green Bay executives Brian Gutekunst and Eliot Wolf, Arizona's Terry McDonough and Minnesota's George Paton.

Wilcox embracing challenge, will change the way Cal looks on field

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AP

Wilcox embracing challenge, will change the way Cal looks on field

BERKELEY — With more than a half-century without a Rose Bowl berth, tougher academic standards than most Pac-12 schools and lackluster fan support in a pro-sports focused market, there are plenty of hurdles for a football coach at California.

Coach Justin Wilcox took the job for the Golden Bears because he embraces those obstacles and he wants players who feel the same way as he seeks to rebuild a program that has one winning record in the past five years and no conference championships since 1958.

"When you come here, there are challenges," Wilcox said at his introductory news conference Tuesday. "You don't come here and go through school and just go through the motions. You'll be challenged in the classroom, challenged on the football field and learn to interact in a dynamic society. I believe in that and that helps guys grow."

Wilcox faces many hurdles in his new job replacing the recently fired Sonny Dykes less than three weeks before national signing day. He has to put together a coaching staff, evaluate the players already on campus and try to keep together, and even add to, a recruiting class that committed to a different staff.

Athletic director Mike Williams fired Dykes after four seasons on Jan. 8 because he wanted a coach committed to Cal instead of flirting with other jobs and needed someone who could excite a fan base that often stayed away from Memorial Stadium in recent years as the Bears teamed porous defenses with sometimes exciting offenses while posting a 19-30 record.

Williams had five finalists for the job but chose a former Cal assistant with a defensive background and familiarity with the Pac-12 as an assistant for seven years at three schools in the conference.

"He truly gets this place, he truly gets coaching in the West," Williams said. "He came in and was very organized and thoughtful. He knew what he wanted to do and who he wanted to hire. ... It's a special place and I think he'll treat it as a special place."

While Dykes flirted with job openings at Houston and Baylor this past offseason in part because of his concern about increased academic standards for recruits, the Bears hope Wilcox is someone who wants to stick around after more than a decade of being on a self-described "windy" path as a top defensive coach.

The former Oregon defensive back began his coaching career in 2001 as a graduate assistant at Boise State. He spent three years as linebackers coach under Jeff Tedford at Cal from 2003-05 when the Bears nearly ended their Rose Bowl drought during a 10-win season with Aaron Rodgers at quarterback in 2004.

Wilcox has spent the past 11 years as a defensive coordinator with stops at Boise State, Tennessee, Washington, Southern California and finally Wisconsin, where he helped the Badgers field a top 10 defense and win the Cotton Bowl.

Wilcox has worked and played for many successful coaches, including Tedford, Chris Petersen, Dan Hawkins, Mike Bellotti, and Paul Chryst.

"I've been extremely fortunate to work for and with people I learned so much from," he said. "Each step along the way, I've seen it done a lot of different ways. I'm not trying to be any of those people. I always try to take pieces and make it my own."

Wilcox has begun putting together his staff, having hired former Eastern Washington coach Beau Baldwin as offensive coordinator and longtime Oregon offensive line coach Steve Greatwood to fill that role on the Bears.

The Bears will look very different under Wilcox than Dykes. Wilcox said he will recruit tight ends as Cal moves from the spread "Bear Raid" offense that relied on four receivers almost exclusively to a more balanced offense with tight ends and more power concepts.

While he will delegate most of the offensive responsibilities to Baldwin, Wilcox said he will be more involved on defense where he wants to find players who can fit into his base 3-4 system.

Cal ranked 125th in total defense, 127th in scoring defense and 122nd in yards per play out of 128 FBS teams last season on the way to a 5-7 record.

"Every second is critical right now," Wilcox said. "I will not sacrifice the long-term good of the program for what everyone wants which is certainty. Things will happen quickly. I understand the recruits have some anxiety about the situation and there's emotions involved. That's totally understandable. I'd feel the same way."