Chris Nicoll, AP
Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert (27) goes up for a dunk between Oklahoma City Thunder guard Alex Abrines (8) and forward Jerami Grant (9) during the second half of an NBA basketball game Saturday, Oct. 21, 2017, in Salt Lake City. The Utah Jazz won 96-87. (AP Photo/Chris Nicoll)

Same ol' Jazz, different season

With the NBA season underway, the new-look Utah Jazz remain competitively on defense after four games even without former all-star forward Gordon Hayward. According to the Ringer, the Jazz have not only shown that they might be better off without Hayward, the team also made it clear that Rudy Gobert was the team's most valuable player last season — not Hayward. Also the signing of Ricky Rubio from the Minnesota Timberwolves has helped the Jazz at point guard. Rubio now averages 7.5 assists a game for the 2-2 Jazz. The Jazz face the Phoenix Suns Wednesday at 8 p.m. MDT

Kyle Van Noy, the most improved player for the Patriots

Kyle Van Noy has received praise for his improvement as a starting linebacker for the New England Patriots. Van Noy had a huge stop on fourth-and-goal in the Patriots' 23-7 win against the Atlanta Falcons last week. The former Cougar tackled Atlanta's Taylor Gabriel for a five-yard loss after the Falcons went for it from the 1-yard line on fourth-and-goal.

Other links

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Jalen Davis named a semifinalist for the Jim Thorpe Award

Alex Smith one of the top passing leaders in the NFL

Kavika Luafatasaga gets Polynesian Player of the Year spotlight

And finally ...

Steve Smith Sr. and the Steve Smith Family Foundation recently worked with another non-profit organization to help a domestic violence survivor in North Carolina place siding on her house. The retired NFL player and newly inducted Crimson Club Hall of Famer has always been active and supportive in his community. His foundation originally started in North Carolina where Smith Sr. played 13 seasons with the Carolina Panthers before he finished his career playing two seasons with the Baltimore Ravens. According to his website, the Steve Smith Family Foundation promotes health and wellness along with showing awareness and the prevention of domestic violence.