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Hank Aaron: No. 44 made baseball history 44 years ago today

It was a historic day for baseball: 44 years ago today, No. 44 entered the record books.

On the evening of April 8, 1974, Atlanta Braves slugger Hank Aaron became the career home run king, slamming a 1-0 fastball off Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Al Downing into the left-center field bullpen at Atlanta’s Fulton County Stadium. Home run No. 715 allowed Aaron to pass Babe Ruth’s career record that had stood since 1935, and tied the game at 3 and ignited a four-run rally for the Braves. Atlanta would win the nationally televised game, 7-4.

There was an 11-minute delay to celebrate the homer, as the crowd of 53,775 roared its approval.

Here are two iconic broadcast calls of Aaron’s home run, starting with Braves announcer Milo Hamilton:

And here is the call by Vin Scully, the longtime Dodgers broadcaster:

Which one do you like better? There is the pure, unbridled excitement of Hamilton, whose “There’s a new home run champion of all time, and it’s Henry Aaron” is the more commonly heard audio.

And then there is the more nuanced call by Scully, who was silent for 22 seconds after the ball cleared the fence so listeners could soak in the moment. 

“What a marvelous moment for baseball,” Scully said when he spoke again. “What a marvelous moment for Atlanta and the state of Georgia. What a marvelous moment for the country and the world.”

Which one was better? You make the call.

Humboldt Broncos junior hockey team: 5 things to know

The Humboldt Broncos were heading to Nipawin, Saskatchewan, when the bus the players and coaches were riding on was T-boned by a tractor-trailer. Here are a few things to know about this junior team that plays in the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League.

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Home base: Humboldt is a city in the province of Saskatchewan, Canada. It is located 70 miles west of Saskatoon.

Trailing series: Humboldt was facing a 3-1 series deficit in the semifinals of their SJHL series. The Broncos lost in triple overtime to Napawin on Wednesday night in Humboldt. Game 5 was postponed by the junior-A league Friday night. Game 6 was scheduled for Sunday in Humboldt. The Estevan Bruins had already advanced to the championship final.

>> 14 killed in crash that involved Canadian youth hockey team

Great record: The Broncos are the most successful team in SJHL history, winning 10 league championships. Humboldt has won the RBC Cup, which is Canada’s junior A championship, two times since 1996.

Broncos in the NHL: Humboldt has produced six players who have played in the NHL since the Broncos were founded in 1970: Sheldon Brookbank, Curt Giles, Neil Hawryliw, Grant Jennings, Bill McDougall and Terry Ruskowski played for Humboldt. Jennings won a pair of Stanley Cup titles with the Pittsburgh Penguins in 1991 and 1992.

From all over: Humboldt team president Kevin Garinger said the Broncos roster includes players from Edmonton, Slave Lake and Airdrie in Alberta and from Saskatchewan and Manitoba.

Astros give ‘Mattress Mack’ a World Series ring

There were many heroes during the Houston Astros’ run to their first World Series title last year, but the team decided to honor a local entrepreneur whose heroic work helped the city recover from Hurricane Harvey last year.

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Gallery Furniture owner Jim McIngvale, known as “Mattress Mack,” received a World Series ring from the team, according to an Instagram post Friday by his daughter, Laura McIngvale Brown.

McIngvale paid off a bet it made with customers last year, a wager that cost his business $10 million. McIngvale bet that if the Astros won the World Series, customers who had spent $3,000 on mattresses would receive a full refund.

>> Astros fans win again: Furniture company refunds $10 million

McIngvale also surprised 20 Astros fans and 20 first responders with tickets to Game 6 of the World Series and flew the group to Los Angeles on a chartered plane, KHOU reported.

He also made headlines when he opened his mattress warehouse and stores as shelters for Houston-area residents affected by floods in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey.

Tim Tebow hits 3-run homer on first pitch he sees with Binghamton Rumble Ponies 

Tim Tebow made his debut with the Class AA Binghamton Rumble Ponies a memorable one, smashing a three-run homer on the first pitch he saw Thursday night, the Binghamton Press reported.

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The two-out homer by the 2007 Heisman Trophy winner gave the Rumble Ponies a 5-0 lead in the first inning of the team’s season opener and came off Portland Sea Dogs pitcher Teddy Stankiewicz.

Tebow also homered in his first at-bat when he played for the Low-A Columbia Firefly in 2017.

Thursday night, Tebow batted seventh for Binghamton, a minor-league affiliate for the New York Mets. He also played left field, the Press reported.

The Rumble Ponies won the game, 6-0.

Bear Bryant's great-grandson commits to Alabama

The great-grandson of legendary University of Alabama football coach Paul “Bear” Bryant has committed to play for the Crimson Tide, ESPN reported.

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Quarterback Paul Tyson of Hewitt-Trussville High School in Trussville, Alabama, made the announcement on Twitter.

"It's a family thing, but I definitely tried to look past that and just realize that I'm going to be here for four years and not let that decide where I go to college," Tyson told ESPN. “I let the fan out of me, basically. I visited all different places and stayed open and just wanted to go where home is, and that's Alabama.”

Bryant played at Alabama from 1933 to 1935, but he is better known as the head coach of the Crimson Tide program from 1957 to 1983, where he won a record six national championships.

That total was tied last season by current Tide coach Nick Saban, who convinced Tyson to play in Tuscaloosa. Tyson, a 6-foot-5, 210-pound pocket passer, also visited Duke, Kentucky, LSU, Michigan, North Carolina State and Tennessee before deciding on Alabama, ESPN reported.

The Crimson Tide has two solid quarterbacks already with Jalen Hurts and January’s national title game hero, Tua Tagovailoa, but Tyson said he was comfortable with the legacy he will be expected to uphold.

"Really it just came down to Coach Saban, Coach (Dan) Enos and the great relationships with them," Tyson said. "Them wanting me to commit now, me loving it down here. It's just home."

Perhaps Tyson can take inspiration from an old video of his great-grandfather addressing incoming freshmen at Alabama:

Jack Nicklaus’ grandson sinks hole-in-one, brings grandpa to tears

Gary Nicklaus, 15, aced the ninth hole as the caddie for his grandfather Jack Nicklaus.

Known as GT, the younger Nicklaus scored his first-ever ace and had his grandfather in tears in a wild celebration. The 78-year-old Nicklaus finished tied for fourth at 4-under par. Their playing partner was 82-year-old Gary Player who finished tied for 10th.

Nicklaus, the six-time Masters champion, said he ranks the hole-in-one by his grandson as his number one golf memory.

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“To watch your grandson do that is special,” a still choked up Nicklaus said.

Gary Nicklaus said he was just trying to hit the ball on the green.

“For that to happen was unbelievable,” Gary Nicklaus said. “… It was surreal.”

Nicklaus said he asked his grandson three days ago whether he wanted to take the last tee shot. When he agreed, Nicklaus said he told the youngster he would get a hole-in-one.

The 68-year-old Tom Watson won the Par 3 Contest.

Nick Fleetwood and Thomas Pieters finished tied for second at 5-under par and Adam Hadwin and Chez Reavie finished tied for fourth with Nicklaus. 

Photos: Villanova beats Michigan in NCAA championship game

Villanova has its second national championship in three years after a 79-62 victory over Michigan.

NCAA Championship: Villanova's Donte DiVincenzo breaks Michigan's defense in national title win

Donte DiVincenzo came off the bench to pour in 31 points to lead Villanova to a 79-62 win over Michigan in the 2018 National Championship Game and claim the game’s Most Outstanding Player award.

>> PHOTOS: Villanova beats Michigan in NCAA championship game

Michigan’s defense was its biggest strength. KenPom’s analytics ranked the Wolverines’ defense as third best in the country, but DiVincenzo split them up all night. Villanova brought home its second title in three years, and he’s a big reason why.

>> WATCH: Notre Dame wins NCAA women's championship on Arike Ogunbowale buzzer-beater

Donte DiVincenzo is usually solid on 3-pointers, but he was on fire in title game

DiVincenzo hit 5 of his 7 shots from beyond the arc. His teammates were 5 for 22. Michigan’s perimeter defense is one of the best in the country, but the Wolverines were no match for Villanova’s red-headed marksman.

DiVincenzo usually shoots a perfectly respectable 39 percent on threes. He was outstanding on Monday when it mattered most.

>> PHOTOS: Notre Dame defeats Mississippi State to win women’s basketball championship

Donte DiVincenzo’s hot shooting part of why Villanova surged past Michigan

The Wolverines were up as many as seven points over Villanova in the first half, and it looked like they’d have a shot at pulling off an upset over the favored Wildcats.

DiVincenzo’s 3-pointer in the second half is when we all knew Villanova had this game for sure.

But his 25th, 26th and 27th points were perhaps the biggest. DiVincenzo knocked down a 3 to make it 62-44 with under 8 minutes to go and virtually put the game and the national title away for the Wildcats.

Yankees’ Aaron Judge promises more home runs in Pepsi digital spot

Promising to hit home runs is nothing new for major-league baseball players. Babe Ruth famously promised a four-bagger to 11-year-old Johnny Sylvester in 1926 -- and then delivered.

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Ruth’s slugging descendant, Aaron Judge, does a 21st-century version in a new digital spot he shot for Pepsi, the New York Daily News reported.

Judge, who hit 52 homers as a rookie in 2017, is shown in the video sitting in a New York pizza parlor, eating a slice of pizza and sipping on a Pepsi Zero Sugar drink.

The owner of the restaurant is on the telephone talking with his mother, and the woman insists on talking to the Yankees outfielder.

The 2017 American League Rookie of the Year takes the phone and promises the woman he will do his best to hit 80 home runs in 2018.

>> Snowed under: Blizzard forces Yankees to cancel home opener

Judge will need to crank up his power stroke to reach that plateau. Through four games, he is batting .200 with three hits and no home runs, the Daily News reported.

The New York slugger will resume his quest Tuesday, as the Yankees’ home opener against the Tampa Bay Rays was canceled Monday because of a blizzard that hit the New York area.

Internet memes get mean with Sister Jean

It didn’t take long for some internet users to turn mean on Sister Jean.

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After the University of Loyola-Chicago’s fairy tale college basketball season ended Saturday with a loss in the Final Four, memes began to surface, mocking the team’s inspirational chaplain, Sister Jean Dolores-Schmidt.

The Crying Jordan memes popped online after No. 3 Michigan defeated Loyola-Chicago, 69-57. A head shot of Michael Jordan, with tears streaming down his face, was superimposed over the face of the 98-year-old nun, who has rooted for the Ramblers since the early 1960s.

Another meme showed a young boy faking out an elderly woman during a one-on-one basketball game. The boy drives to the basket as the woman tumbles to the ground.

#Michigan said bye bye to #SisterJean in the #FinalFour,” the meme read.

A third tweet showed a group of people tossing a wheelchair with a fake elderly woman strapped to it over a railing into a ravine.

It just goes to show that when it comes to the internet, nobody is off limits.

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