Opposing teams might be afraid of Ohio State’s combo of Jantel Lavender and Samantha Prahalis, but it is actually the other players on the team they should be cowering from. Lavender has been a mainstay at center for OSU for nearly three seasons. The addition of the sophomore guard Prahalis, who threw a coming-out party at Michigan State last Sunday, has made OSU a mountain too tall to climb for most opponents.“[Lavender’s] sophomore year, I don’t think she played with someone with the ball-handling ability of Sammy [Prahalis],” head coach Jim Foster said. “Those two run the pick and roll like two savvy NBA veterans.”Tonight’s opponent, Illinois, has already witnessed this power first-hand.Although Lavender and Prahalis combined for 45 of OSU’s 76 points at Illinois on Dec. 28 and 52 of 65 at MSU, that is not the story of the whole season. In fact, the reason for their success lies in the hands of a few other role players on the team.“[An important thing is] playing your role on the team. My role has changed since high school,” freshman guard Tayler Hill said. “It’s a team effort when you get to college.”OSU’s main threat is the 3-point field goal, not the inside game of Lavender. OSU ranks eighth in the nation in 3-point field goal percentage mostly because of two players, senior forward Sarah Schulze and junior guard Brittany Johnson.Both starters are deadly from behind the arc. Schulze is 31 of 67 (46.3 percent) on the year and Johnson is 36 of 71 (50.7 percent).Their presence on the floor forces opponents to play man-to-man defense, which gives Lavender the ability to dominate in the paint and Prahalis her chance to drive the lane.“A team may initially double team, but because you can kick it out and [the other players on the floor are] knocking down shots it just makes me a better player because I get that one-on-one post opportunity,” said Lavender. She had 31 points against Illinois on Dec. 28.The third role player is also a familiar name to Big Ten fans, guard Shavelle Little, the reigning two-time Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year.When Little comes off the bench, she changes the game instantly with her ability to steal the ball and shut down opposing players. The defensive specialist leads the Buckeyes in steals with 31 on the season, eight of which came against Illinois in their last meeting.The last piece of the puzzle is no less important than the other three. Senior center Andrea Walker is having a phenomenal season off the bench.Walker is Lavender’s replacement when she is off the floor and her 6-foot-5-inch partner in crime when both are on the floor, allowing them to steal control of the paint from any player. They have already handled tough opponents this year. Illinois’ leading scorer, center Jenna Smith, was held to only 11 points against Lavender and Walker and MSU center Allyssa Dehaan was limited to only four rebounds, despite her 6-foot-9-inch frame.“We prefer to play basketball and some teams like to wrestle, but the fact of the matter is we can pull up our sleeves and wrestle,” coach Foster said.Even though Walker only plays an average of 13 minutes per game, she is still tied for the team lead in blocks with Lavender at 20, and she averages 4.4 rebounds per game, the same rate at which Lavender rebounds.These four players along with the rest of the team make the dominance of Lavender and Prahalis possible by spreading the floor, creating turnovers, changing the pace of the game and allowing them to rest on the bench without losing control of the game.“I think everybody is starting to really understand their roles and how you can help this team by playing in that role,” Lavender said. “Players are more accepting of the role they are playing in and it makes for a better team.”OSU defeated Illinois 76-47 on the Illini’s home court in Champaign, Ill. last December. The perfect team chemistry of the Buckeyes was too much for Illinois once already this season and the Buckeyes are hoping to make that twice Thursday night.
Leicester City manager Claude Puel rues his side’s wasted opportunities but says they will learn from their 2-0 home defeat to Tottenham Hotspur.Son Heung-Min scored a stunning goal in added time of an even first half, and Dele Alli secured the victory for Spurs in the second half with a diving header.“It was a disappointment because we started very well in this game with intensity, quality, and good structure,” Puel told the club’s website.“We defended very well against this team and after our good ball recovery we tried to take the space, we had good opportunities but we wasted a lot of good moves without the precision, without being clinical with the right pass in the right moment.Maguire says United need to build on today’s win George Patchias – September 14, 2019 Harry Maguire wants his United teammates to build on the victory over Leicester City.During the summer, Harry Maguire was referred to as the ultimate…“It was a shame because our togetherness, understanding, and mentality were fantastic today. After, we regret also our first goal that was conceded in extra-time before half-time.“It was harsh because I think it was a strong first half and after the second goal it was difficult to come back in the game. We tried at the end to push, we took risks to put offensive players on the pitch and there were some good moves and chances.“I was happy about our mentality and desire and we tried to play also but we lacked composure with the ball and under pressure, we could have had other opportunities.”
Ransomware is popping up as an increasingly viable threat for online businesses, but not many people know how it works or how to navigate the threat to protect themselves and their customers.Related: Do This to Prevent Cybercrime and Save Your Business from DisasterYet they should know, because ransomware can be as scary as it sounds. That’s why entrepreneurs need to understand how the threat works, to prepare themselves, should an attack hit their company.In fact, a ransomware attack can happen to any business or customer, but keep in mind that the most prevalent ransomware doesn’t actually exist in your website’s backend or servers. Instead, it lives in the browsers and devices of your customers, or even those of your staff. It’s part of a larger group of malicious software called Client-Side Injected Malware — malware that individuals unknowingly download into their own systems via bundled apps or otherwise legitimate software.Your website may be operating perfectly fine, but when a consumer’s browser or computer becomes infected with ransomware, the consumer sees malicious links and advertisements overlaid on your website — and oftentimes these things look innocuous. There may be a fake link, for instance, for “Free Shipping” or “Recommended Products” that looks authentic to the naked eye, but once clicked on, triggers a ransomware attack.That’s what makes this ransomware so dangerous: It completely bypasses your website servers, as it loads after your page renders, so all the protections and safeguards you earlier put into place to secure your website will do nothing to stop ransomware from attacking your site visitors on their own computers. All they have to do is click on one of those fake links in order for it to rear its ugly head.Once your customer does click, his or her computer immediately locks up and something terrifying like this appears:In other words, the ransomware itself often looks like a legitimate system message. It can also take the form of popups or windows urging the consumer to contact a customer service center in order to resolve the issue.No amount of force-quitting the browser or restarting the computer will resolve it. Ransomware is persistent and insidious, and once it’s taken over a computer, it’s a nightmare to deal with. What’s worse is that consumers won’t know their computers are infected until an attack occurs.Related: 4 Ways Your Small Business Can Better Prevent Cyber CrimeIf, as in the illustrated example, a consumer calls the phone number on the popup, he or she will be led to a call center offering antivirus and cleaning apps, sometimes at a monthly subscription cost of hundreds of dollars, and with a logmein client that allows the criminals to remotely control the user’s computer until they get what they want.With full access to the computer, the culprits will deny the consumer access to their own systems and files until a hefty ransom is paid. Considering the lifetimes of photos, work and personal content that most people put on their devices, it’s no wonder that many in recent months have reported actually paying those ransoms, to regain access to their files.The worst part? The vast majority of consumers assume that your website, not their own computers, is infected with the malware that has caused this nightmare. You may get frantic customer phone calls, formal complaints from shoppers or inquiries from local media and watchdogs. As a business owner who knows little about this new form of Client-Side Malware, you may assume the problem is coming from your backend.You’ll impulsively place urgent calls to your CTO or IT staff, but the point is, you shouldn’t react without considering the problem first.It’s critical that you understand what kind of malware is behind the attack, because oftentimes it will not have come through your backend. It’s very possible that Client-Side Malware is the underlying cause. Ransomware is especially destructive because it can ruin an online business’ credibility without ever passing through the website itself. So be sure you understand exactly what you’re dealing with first. Many site owners will pour thousands (if not hundreds of thousands) of dollars into emergency server protections when the problem isn’t stemming from that side of the equation at all. And that’s a mistake that can be costly and ineffective.The takeaway here is that malware developers are coming after online businesses with Client-Side Injected Malware because they know it’s far easier to infiltrate a consumer’s browser than it is to attack your heavily guarded website servers.Your customer’s front door has become their new back door, and until consumers wake up to the issue, ransomware will continue to grow online. It’s your job to understand the new forms of malware your customers are vulnerable to so that when a problem does arise, you’ll be able to handle it. Related: 5 Ways Lax Security Makes Small Businesses Cyber-Morsels for Computer Criminals Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. How Success Happens Listen Now Hear from Polar Explorers, ultra marathoners, authors, artists and a range of other unique personalities to better understand the traits that make excellence possible. 5 min read August 5, 2015
Captain Kirk himself has a mission for us: Develop new technologies and businesses in order to save the world from itself. “It’s not about closing down the government,” he explains, “but enhancing governmental research and development into new ideas. That’s where all you young entrepreneurs should be at.”We’d be wise to listen. After warping onto the scene in the original 1960s Star Trek TV series, William Shatner has proven himself a genius at staying relevant as an actor, author, musician and supporter of products ranging from travel websites to solar-panels to VR companies to electric bicycles.Related: From Rock God to Master Rosé Winemaker: a Conversation With Jon Bon JoviShatner chatted with Entrepreneur via phone (communicators weren’t available) to discuss his recent partnership with Pedego Electric Bikes — but the conversation soon reached the furthest reaches of the galaxy.What made you first hop on an electric bike?The whole idea that I didn’t have to pedal home. It’s true! I have an indelible picture in my mind: Years ago I was driving up a hilly coastal highway in Washington state in a convertible, and I passed by two bikers — a man and a woman — and the woman was crying. It just suggested to me that she couldn’t go up another hill; she was fatigued and couldn’t make it to the next town. I’ve sort of carried that picture with me whenever I go biking, because how many times have you enthusiastically set off to pedal your bike, gone a certain distance, then turned around and thought, “Oh my God, I’m really tired and getting back is hellish”? It doesn’t have to be that way with an electric bike, and that’s incredible.Your Pedego commercials are hilarious. Was shooting them as fun as it looks? Absolutely. Everybody brought the right equipment, there was a terrific director, the material was good, and the bikes all worked.I particularly liked the one with the guy getting the rectal exam.I thought that was hysterically funny. It’s obvious that you believe in the product you’re endorsing. I really do. I wanted to become part of the company, because it’s so good. Pedego is a company with a great product that’s run beautifully, and I’m so glad to be associated with it. Related: 20 Business Ideas You Can Start With Less Than $10,000Besides acting, you make music, write books, endorse products — do you think of yourself as an entrepreneur?I don’t think of myself as an entrepreneur, I like to think of myself as an artist. However, there is artistry in entrepreneurship. There is the joy of creativity, of making the business work, of being successful at whatever it is you’re doing. There is artistry in that. And so you can be an artist and an entrepreneur, in fact you should be an artist and an entrepreneur at the same time.Knowing how to deal with failure is also important.Well, it’s a well-known fact among us entrepreneurs that you have to fail. You can’t know what is successful until you find out what isn’t successful. You’d be hard pressed to find anybody who says, “Oh, I don’t know failure, I only know success,” because it’s a path untrod. You’re going to trip, and you have to learn where to place your feet.What inspires you to keep trying new things?The basic philosophy — if there is such a thing in my life — is to say yes. The books that I have written, the last one in particular, are all about saying yes to life. It’s very easy to say no and close the door and expire slowly. And it hurts to get out! The muscles are tight, the bones are grinding…but you gotta do it, otherwise you’re essentially dead. Are you excited about the race to send regular citizens into space?Well, I don’t want to go myself. There’s an amusing story that I’ve told about Richard Branson. Richard Branson offered me a seat in the airplane that’s going up into space, and he said it would cost me $250,000. I said, “You got the wrong idea, it’s going to cost you!” I never heard from him again. Absolutely! That should be an honor for him to have you on that flight.That, I think, is the definition of entrepreneurship.Related: The Best Employees Have Side Hustles — Here’s WhySo besides Richard Branson, Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos are also developing spacecraft. Who do you think has the best shot?Well, they all have their qualities, don’t they? I mean Branson has been at it a long while, and he’s got long wavy hair.It’s almost Khan-like, isn’t it?I suppose you could say that. But it’s long and wavy and streaked, and he looks marvelously dramatic. The picture I have of Elon Musk is him being sleepless in his office as he tosses and turns over the success of his rockets. And as for Mr. Bezos, after his divorce I don’t know that he can afford to go into space. Do have any advice for budding entrepreneurs?The future is rife with new technologies. But it’s not just a matter of which technology will be the one to advance, but which company of that technology is the superior company. That superiority usually resides in the management. It’s not the exterior — whether the buildings are made of glass and titanium or not — it’s what the management is doing. That’s where the entrepreneurship is.Related: Need a Business Idea? Here are 55Absolutely.There’s never been more need for new technology. The old technology has taken us to the brink of the extermination of human beings. And we may be over the brink!Hopefully not!Well, if we’re not, it’s up to technology to save us — direct the carbon dioxide and the methane out of the air. I just keep thinking someone is going to say, “Eureka!” The world needs a technological revolution in order to save itself; that’s where our energy should be. January 24, 2019 6 min read Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. 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One technology stock that many analysts and market commentators are very high on is the Chinese Internet search company, Baidu (BIDU). According to data provided by Thomson First Call, 22 out of 29 analysts currently rate BIDU either a “buy” or a “strong buy.” The median price target among all the analysts covering the company is $142 per share… an extraordinarily high 46% above its recent share price of $97. One analyst sees BIDU going to $215 per share in the next 12 months. That represents roughly a 125% increase from current levels. Many market commentators at the most popular financial websites are similarly bullish. One of the commentators in a recent article called Baidu “the biggest bargain in big tech.” Another claims that Baidu is “the best stock for 2013.” A quick evaluation of Baidu makes it easy to understand the reason for all the optimism. First of all, Baidu – with roughly an 80% search-engine market share – is well positioned to benefit from the rapid Internet adoption rate in the lucrative Chinese market. Second, BIDU sports an incredibly strong balance sheet, with a current ratio of 3.6, long-term debt to equity of 0.15, and intangibles to total assets of 0.17. From a valuation standpoint, BIDU looks very attractive, with a forward PEG ratio of 0.53. But a closer look reveals a very important – and largely ignored – risk that investors should consider before jumping on the Baidu bandwagon. That is the risk associated with the company’s VIE structure. The VIE Structure When you purchase shares of Baidu, you’re not assuming direct ownership of the company, as you would if you purchased shares in a US company like, let’s say, Google or Apple. Rather, you’re buying shares in what the legal minds at Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi refer to as “an offshore holding company or shell company whose entire viability hinges on the soundness of its contracts with its Chinese operating company counterpart.” This is what is known as a “variable interest entity” (VIE) structure; it is commonly used by Chinese companies as a way to sidestep China’s ban on foreign investment in certain economic sectors (e.g., the Internet, media, and telecom). Some of the more familiar names that have adopted the VIE structure include: Yoku.com, RenRen, New Oriental Education, Sina, and 21Vianet Group. One major flaw with the VIE structure is that the various contracts and legal agreements between the shell company and the wholly owned Chinese operating company may not be enforceable under Chinese law. And this – as the law firm Robins et al. points out – “exposes foreign investors to the risk that Chinese VIEs may readily breach their contracts with their U.S.-listed counterparts if this serves the VIE’s interests, because Chinese courts will not enforce these contracts against the VIE anyway.” It may happen infrequently, but VIEs do sometimes breach their contracts with the holding company. Once the market becomes aware that a holding company has “lost control of the VIE,” shares go into a tailspin, giving shareholders little time to react. So in a sense, VIE stocks can be a ticking time bomb. Cautionary Tales In early 2008, shares of the PRC seed producer Agria Corporation sank roughly 50% in a matter of days when it was announced that Agria was losing control of its Chinese VIE. The issue was with a Chinese executive at the VIE who became disgruntled at not having received certain compensation for services to the holding company that he believed was owed to him and his management team. The dispute was eventually resolved (and the VIE remained intact) when Agria essentially met the demands of the executive by granting him and other members of management “a significant amount of shares in the offshore parent as well as cash compensation for services rendered to the company.” But shareholders didn’t fare so well; Agria shares never recovered, presumably because investors lost confidence in the company’s corporate structure. Another high-profile example of loss of control over a VIE involved GigaMedia. In early 2010, GigaMedia decided to part ways with a Chinese executive who ran (and largely controlled) its VIE. In an act of defiance, the Chinese executive – emboldened by the fact that he would probably face no legal repercussions – refused to surrender his personal ownership of the Chinese operating licenses for the VIEs… licenses essential to GigaMedia’s business in China. Despite suing the executive in multiple jurisdictions, including in China, GigaMedia wasn’t able to fully regain control of its VIE. GigaMedia shares lost more than half their value as a result. It is important to note that the scenarios above are less likely to happen to Baidu, which has certain safeguards in place to somewhat minimize the risk of losing control of its VIEs. For example, the Chinese executive Yanhong Li, who largely controls Baidu’s VIEs, also has a significant stake in the offshore holding company (BIDU). This serves to align his interests with that of the foreign shareholders, making for a more solid VIE structure. But even with that structure in place, there can be a contagion effect when other companies experience problems with their VIEs. For instance, in May of 2011, Baidu shares fell nearly 30% following the announcement that Alibaba had lost its VIE. The threat of contagion pales in comparison to the threat that Chinese regulators can at any time decide to shut down a VIE. This is what happened to Buddha Steel in March 2011, when it abruptly canceled its proposed public offering in the United States, citing that the company “was advised by local governmental authorities in Hebei Province that [its VIE structure contractual control arrangements] contravene current Chinese management policies related to foreign-invested enterprises and, as a result, are against public policy.” Some have speculated that Buddha Steel was targeted merely because it competed against state-owned steel companies. But others see something more ominous – a potentially broad Chinese government crackdown on the whole VIE structure. Whatever the case may be, one thing is for sure: the Buddha Steel case exposed the vulnerability of the VIE structure whenever it faces regulatory scrutiny in China. Our Final Take on Baidu Ultimately, the Baidu bulls’ claims that shares will surge from current levels may prove to be correct. But because of its VIE structure, Baidu is decidedly not the kind of blue-chip stock many are touting it as. Instead, it’s a far more speculative investment, and it should be treated as such. In Big Tech, we tend to shy away from such speculative and potentially disastrous investments as Baidu. Instead, we focus on the rock-solid stocks that can be counted on to deliver 20%+ annual gains. And sometimes, in our quest to find these stocks, we hit one out of the park, as we did with one company that has returned nearly 150% since we first recommended it. Bits & Bytes Robotic Arm: Mind-Controlled Limb Closer than Ever to Real Human Limb (Huffington Post) This is a fascinating and heartwarming article that found its way into my inbox the other day. It’s about a technology that restores movement for paralysis victims. Will Big Data Get Too Big for the Metric System to Handle? (MIT Technology Review) Andrew McAfee, principal research scientist at MIT’s Center for Digital Business, believes that global IP traffic will surpass the current limit of measures by the end of the decade. Hedge Funds’ Hail Mary: Bet on Tech (BloombergBusinessWeek) Recent SEC filings revealed that the smart money placed some aggressive bets on technology stocks in the most recent quarter. A Devastating Report for Amazon’s Kindle Business (Business Insider) Bad news for Amazon as Pacific Crest analyst Chad Bartley projects sales of the Kindle Fire will come in lower than previously expected for 2013.