January 15, 2013 Regular News Justice Overton dies Justice Overton dies Former Florida Supreme Court Justice Ben F. Overton died Saturday, December 29, in Gainesville, of complications from heart surgery.He was 86 and was Florida’s 62nd justice since statehood. “Justice Overton was one of the most influential members of the court after the sweeping reforms of the 1970s,” said Chief Justice Ricky Polston. “He will be remembered not only for his far-seeing opinions but also for his efforts in the 1970s to make the state courts more accessible by allowing cameras into our courtrooms.”In the mid-1970s, Overton was one of several newly appointed justices who elevated the reputation of the court after it earlier had become involved in scandal. He was the first justice chosen through a merit selection process created by Gov. Reubin Askew that soon was added to the Florida Constitution by a vote of the people.From his appointment on March 27, 1974, until his retirement on January 4, 1999, Overton authored more than 1,400 decisions and was a central figure in a vast series of reforms that made his court one of the most respected and accessible in the nation. He served as chief justice from 1976-78 and chaired the Article V Review Commission in 1984.He not only helped make Florida one of the first states to allow television coverage of court cases, but also was instrumental in making the Supreme Court one of the first in the world to have a website. Overton later played a pivotal role in seeing that every Florida Supreme Court case was televised, webcast, and stored in an on-line archive.Born in Green Bay, Wisconsin, Overton attended the University of Florida and later received his degree from its law school in 1952. He also earned an LL.M in jurisprudence from the University of Virginia in 1984.Overton served nearly 10 years on the Pinellas County circuit court and, for several years, as its chief judge. He was well known for his work in legal education and dispute resolution and was chair of the Dispute Resolution Section of the American Bar Association. He was also an active adjunct professor of law at the UF’s Levin College of Law. Predeceased by his wife Marilyn, Overton is survived by his children Judge William H. Overton, Robert M. Overton, and Catherine L. Overton; two grandchildren William E. and Brian H.; and one great grandchild, Adelynn. Services were held January 5 in Gainesville. After lying in state at the Florida Supreme Court on January 7, he was interred in St. Petersburg January 9. Overton served on the court for 25 years
Liam Cahill says they bring younger guys on to the panel because they always have the bigger picture in their mind.Throw-in is at 6 o’clock on Saturday evening in the LIT Gaelic Grounds, LimerickThe game will be live here on Tipp FM in association with Feile 2019 at Semple Stadium. Photo: Enda O’Sullivan Tipperary take on Cork this evening in the All Ireland U20 hurling final.The sides have met in this year’s Munster final already, while in the U21 competition last year they also met at the Munster and All Ireland final stages again.Some of last year’s panel are still available for tonight’s clash – which is of great benefit to the team according to management.
SALT LAKE CITY — So how did you spend your Saturday?Probably Christmas shopping if you’re the organized type or playing video games if you’re not. Perhaps you spent the afternoon raking the wet leaves off the lawn that have been buried under the snow for the past couple of weeks. Maybe you finally got that pile of pencils sharpened.If you’re a major college football fan, you had to be content watching the annual Army-Navy game and seeing the Midshipmen win for the ninth straight year. Otherwise there wasn’t much in the way of sports to watch on Saturday.But what if you had had the chance to watch the NCAA football quarterfinals from Phoenix or New Orleans Saturday afternoon, after watching two other quarterfinals the night before? That’s what we football fans should be doing in mid-December, instead of waiting a month between games while our interest fades.With input from my good friend and college football aficionado Tom Johnson, we have come up with a plan that could work, if only the people in charge of college football would open their eyes.I understand that similar plans have been offered out there over the years, but perhaps not exactly like this.NumbersThe ideal number for football playoffs is 16. Eight isn’t enough and 32 is too many.With 16 teams, you’re not going to leave out any deserving teams and you shouldn’t have to include any bad ones. Well, except for Connecticut.Most proposals for 16-team tournaments I’ve seen put the winners of the 11 Football Bowl Subdivision conferences in, plus five at-large teams.I suggest eight automatic and eight at-large berths.The eight automatic berths would go to winners of the six current BCS conferences, the Mountain West Conference and the best team from the remaining four conferences, Conference USA, WAC, Mid-American and Sun Belt.One may say this is as discriminatory as the current BCS system, which excludes all but the top six conferences.But really, when is the last time a team from the Mid-American or Sun Belt Conference ever had a team come close to being in the top 16? Who wants to see Auburn vs. Florida International or Oregon vs. Northern Illinois in a first-round game?However, the MWC has proven itself worthy over the past decade with the likes of TCU, Utah and BYU. And even though those three teams are leaving, Boise State has certainly proven itself worthy and Nevada, Hawaii and Fresno State will make the MWC a creditable league along with Air Force and a rising San Diego State program. To appease the other four conferences, take the best team from among those leagues.SeedingsRank the eight automatic qualifiers with the eight at-large teams much like the current NCAA basketball tournament does. You could put a committee together like the one for basketball or just keep the current BCS standings as a basis for seeding with the option to tweak the rankings slightly to avoid first-round matchups of teams from the same conference or opponents that have already played during the season.As for soon-to-be independent BYU, it could make it into the playoffs by finishing in the top 16 and getting one of the at-large berths, the same chance Notre Dame would have.ScheduleStart the playoffs the first weekend of December with first-round games played at the home site of the higher-ranked team. Two weeks later play the quarterfinals at major bowl sites with doubleheaders on Friday night and Saturday at say, the Fiesta Bowl and Sugar Bowl (if this wouldn’t satisfy the money-makers, you could perhaps include a couple of other destinations such as Orlando or San Diego.Two weeks later play the semifinals on New Year’s Day, at the other two major bowl sites Pasadena and Miami (rotate them every year).Then on or around Jan. 10 play the national championship game at the fancy new stadium in Dallas.And what about all those Beef ‘O’ Brady’s and Kraft Fight Hunger bowls out there? You can keep them and about 50 other teams happy by playing those games in the two-week stretch between Dec. 20 and Jan. 5.This yearSo what would have happened this year with such a playoff plan in place? We could have had first-round matchups such as Arkansas-Michigan State, Ohio State-LSU, TCU-Oklahoma State and Oklahoma-Boise State.Assuming the top seeds had won their first-round games, the quarterfinals would have matched Auburn-Arkansas, Stanford-Wisconsin, Ohio State-TCU and Oklahoma-Oregon.Two weeks later on New Year’s Day, we might have had Auburn vs. Stanford and Oregon vs. TCU. Finally on Jan. 10 we could have ended up with Auburn vs. Oregon in the national championship game.Just like we’ll actually have this year.But at least Oregon and Auburn would have earned their way in and not been sitting around for nearly six weeks waiting to play the game. And we all would have had some exciting games to enjoy on the boring Saturdays in mid-December.e-mail: [email protected]