Monday, December 21, 2015

Pia Wurtzbach: Miss Universe 2015

The Miss Universe 2015 contest has ended in confusion and disarray after the host mistakenly named the wrong woman as the winner.
Ariadna Gutierrez Arevalo from Colombia had already been crowned and was standing on stage to cheers from the Las Vegas audience when mortified host Steve Harvey returned to announce the error.
“OK, folks, um, I have to apologise,” he said, walking back on stage while Arevalo was proudly waving to fans, holding the winner’s bouquet and wearing the Miss Universe sash. “The first runner-up is Colombia,” he went on, “Miss Universe 2015 is Philippines.”
The camera panned straight to a stunned Miss Philippines, Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach, who started slowly walking to the front of the stage. For a few awkward moments the two women stood side by side, in front of a TV audience of millions from around the world, before Harvey explained that he read the card naming the winner and runner-up in the wrong order.

“It is my mistake, but it’s still a great night.”
“Please don’t hold it against the ladies, please don’t. I feel so badly but it’s still a great night.”
As he spoke, a former Miss Universe winner quickly removed the crown from Arevalo and placed it on Wurtzbach. The broadcast ended moments later.
The reaction on social media was swift, with viewers expressing dismay at the “fail of the decade”.

Later, Wurtzbach told reporters that she wished Arevalo well.
“I’m very sorry. I did not take the crown from her,” she said. “None of this was done on purpose. It was an honest mistake.”
Harvey’s mistake is not the first time the wrong woman has been named the winner of a high-profile beauty pageant. In 2010 during a live television broadcast, Australian host Sarah Murdoch read out the wrong name in the finale of Australia’s Next Top Model.
The competition started with women representing 80 countries between the ages of 19 and 27. For the first time, viewers at home weighed in, with their votes being tallied in addition to four in-person celebrity judges.
NBC Universal and Donald Trump co-owned the Miss Universe Organization until earlier this year. The real-estate developer offended Latin Americans in June when he made anti-immigrant remarks in announcing his Republican presidential run.
That led Spanish-language network Univision to pull out of the broadcast for what would have been the first of five years airing the pageants and NBC to cut business ties with Trump.
The former star of the Celebrity Apprentice reality show sued both companies, settling with NBC in September, which included buying the network’s stake in the pageants.
That same month, Trump sold the organisation that includes the Miss Universe, Miss USA and Miss Teen USA pageants to entertainment company WME-IMG.

Associated Press contributed to this report

Western Kentucky Hilltoppers: 2015 Miami Beach Bowl Champions

MIAMI -- A feel-good Western Kentucky football season ended in heartbreak, but for the Hilltoppers, the good kind.

South Florida led by two touchdowns early in Monday's Miami Beach Bowl, weathered a run of 24 straight WKU points and pulled to within one possession during the fourth quarter.

WKU hit back each time in a 45-35, season-ending victory at Marlins Park. Just when the Bulls had hope, it often vanished.

Heartbreaking, really. It's what the great teams do, and after finishing 12-2, matching the program record for victories first set during the 2002 I-AA national title season, this bunch will go down as one of WKU's best.

Second-year coach Jeff Brohm's squad likely secured spots in the final Associated Press and coaches polls, adding to a Conference USA championship won earlier this month. The Louisville native Brohm's also due for a raise, and perhaps one more spin through the coaching carousel should it start again.

Credit goes to an up-and-down day by Brohm's offense, which received few favors from its defensive counterparts.

Brandon Doughty completed 32 of 44 passes for 461 yards in his final college game, and that was after a 10 of 19 start that included an early interception. The performance made the sixth-year senior the first WKU quarterback to top 5,000 yards passing in a season and third in C-USA history.

Top Miami Beach Bowl target Nicholas Norris pushed him over the mark.

Doughty in the third quarter hit the junior Norris for back-to-back touchdowns, one for 69 yards and another for 55. His catches moved the Hilltoppers ahead for good, with a 9-yard Nacarius Fant rush, acrobatic Jared Dangerfield catch and 42-yard Anthony "Ace" Wales rush enough to hold on late.

But there was plenty of doubt as USF quarterback Quinton Flowers danced in open field for most of the afternoon, rallying the Bulls from a 38-21 deficit at the end of the third quarter. On the opening play of the fourth, Flowers threw 53 yards to Rodney Adams for a score. And on USF's next drive, his 8-yard keeper made it a 38-35 game.

From there, however, the Bulls were stopped twice on fourth down and missed a 54-yard field that would have, at the time, tied the score.

One last quick-strike scoring drive put WKU over the top. A play before the Louisville native Wales raced up the right sideline for a touchdown, Doughty set it up with a flea-flicker completion to Antwane Grant.

Playing in his home state, Doughty was near perfect after the Hilltoppers' opening five drives ended with two punts, a turnover on downs and his interception. From there, he completed 22 of 25 passes, going out on a high note and against the coach who signed him, WKU graduate Willie Taggart.