Sources: Tarver top choice as Stanford D-coordinator

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Sources: Tarver top choice as Stanford D-coordinator

Jan. 25, 2011STANFORD PAGEScott Reiss and Matt Maiocco
CSNBayArea.com

Independent NFL and Stanford sources have told Comcast SportsNet Bay Area that former 49ers linebackers coach Jason Tarver is the leading candidate to replace Vic Fangio as the Cardinals defensive coordinator.

Tarver spent the past 10 seasons with the 49ers, initially joining Steve Mariucci's staff in 2001 as offensive quality control coach. Dennis Erickson retained him in 2003 and '04, giving him a promotion to assistant running backsoffensive assistant.Mike Nolan kept Tarver on the 49ers' staff in 2005 as outside linebackerscoach, a position he held the past six seasons.Tarver earned a bachelor's degree in chemistry from Santa Clara in 1997. Healso earned his master's degree in biochemistry and molecular biology fromUCLA and received the departmental prize for distinguished teaching in 1998and 2000.
RELATED: 49ers announce Fangio hireFangio, who served as Stanford's defensive coordinator in 2010 under JimHarbaugh, accepted the same position on Harbaugh's 49ers' coaching staff.Fangio interviewed for the Cardinal's head-coaching position -- a job thatwent to former offensive coordinator David Shaw.REWIND: Stanford names Shaw head football coach
In other 49ers coaching news, assistant offensive line coach Ray Brown, aformer Pro Bowl player with the organization, accepted a similar positionwith the Carolina Panthers.Brown was slated to be the 49ers' third offensive line coach, along withMike Solari and Tim Drevno, had he chosen to remain with the 49ers.Also, former 49ers assistant special-teams coach Dave Fipp accepted theposition with the Miami Dolphins, a source told CSN.More details to follow as we continue to pursue this story.

Durant gets taste of competition, plays 1-on-1 with Warriors coach

Durant gets taste of competition, plays 1-on-1 with Warriors coach

For the first time in a month, Kevin Durant got a taste of competition. Well, sort of.

Durant on Wednesday went through one-on-one sessions with Warriors assistant coach Willie Green, who is two years removed from a 12-year career as a guard in the NBA.

“He played full-court one-on-one, played some half-court one-on-one to start and then they stepped it up,” coach Steve Kerr told reporters prior to the Warriors-Spurs game in San Antonio. “Willie said it was a good workout.”

Durant and Green played five games of half-court ball and one with the full court. The active player, for the record, won all six games.

“Kevin got him pretty good, so it’s a good sign,” Kerr said before flashing a bit of humor. “If Willie had beaten him, I would have been very concerned.”

An even better sign for the Warriors is that only one man walked away feeling the burn of competition.

“Willie said he was really sore,” Kerr said. “Not Kevin. Willie.”

Durant has been out since sustaining a medial collateral ligament sprain and bone bruise to his left knee on Feb. 28 at Washington. Though there have been no setbacks in his rehab, there is no firm timetable for his return.

“It’s impossible to predict that stuff,” Kerr said. “But it would be nice for him to get a couple games in at the end of the regular season.”

The Warriors plan to re-evaluate Durant next week, after which they expect to plot out his return. There is optimism that he could be back in time to play two or three regular season games in preparation for the postseason, which begins April 15.

 

Anonymous poll: Is Sharks defenseman Burns still Norris frontrunner?

Anonymous poll: Is Sharks defenseman Burns still Norris frontrunner?

Throughout much of his dominant 2016-17 season, the words “Norris Trophy lock” have often preceded Brent Burns’ name. 

The 32-year-old has led all NHL blueliners in scoring for the past three months, building upon a strong second half last season in which he helped lead the Sharks to their first ever Stanley Cup Final, and solidifying himself as one of the best defensemen in the game.

In 76 games, Burns has 28 goals – 11 more than any other defenseman – and 45 assists for 73 points and a plus-17 rating. At one point on Feb. 19, he had 14 more points than Erik Karlsson, who was second among NHL defensemen.

But Burns went cold earlier this month. During one stretch, he went nine out of 10 games without finding the scoresheet, and finally snapped a 16-game goal drought with an overtime winner on Tuesday against the Rangers.

Meanwhile, Karlsson has been heating up. A two-time Norris Trophy winner in 2012 and 2015, the Senators defenseman has 13 points in his last 14 games. As of Wednesday morning, Karlsson was just five points behind Burns in scoring, with 15 goals and 53 assists for 68 points and a plus-seven rating.

There’s talk Karlsson could take home a third Norris, snatching it out of Burns’ grasp.

But, probably not.

In an anonymous poll among 21 PHWA members, most of whom get a vote for the Norris Trophy at the conclusion of the regular season, Burns’ designation as the frontrunner seems fairly safe with just six games to go in the regular season.

Of the writers polled, including a broad swath from across North America, 14 told CSN they would likely vote for Burns as the league’s best defensemen if the season ended Tuesday night/Wednesday morning. Three were leaning towards Burns, while only four said they would give it to Karlsson.

One writer polled had Burns first, Tampa Bay’s Viktor Hedman second, and Karlsson third.

Of course, 21 votes is just a small sample size of the PHWA membership. Last season, 183 writers took part in voting for the Norris, according to the final tally. Burns finished third in voting, well behind winner Drew Doughty, while Karlsson was second.

Still, as long as Burns stays in front of Karlsson in the scoring race, it appears he remains in line to become the first Sharks defenseman ever to earn a Norris Trophy.