Opinion Ohio State linebackers have earned back the Silver Bullets moniker

Redshirt-freshman linebacker Darron Lee celebrates during the College Football Playoff Championship against Oregon on Jan. 12 in Arlington, Texas. OSU won, 42-20.Credit: Mark Batke / Photo editorHistorically, Ohio State defenses — especially the linebackers — have lived up to their moniker.But as of late, the “Silver Bullets” have been shooting blanks.Even in August, the Buckeye linebackers were one of the biggest question marks on the team.Senior Curtis Grant had plenty of talent — judging by his five-star rating coming out of high school — but he never seemed to put it all together in Columbus. To an extent, the same could be said for junior Joshua Perry, who racked up just 69 tackles through his first two years with the Buckeyes.And then there was redshirt-freshman Darron Lee, who still looked more like the high school quarterback he was than the elite linebacker he is today.But just before the season Grant was named a team captain — which came as a surprise to some — and Perry and Lee had locked up starting spots. Lee made his mark early on with a key touchdown off a fumble recovery against Navy, but the Buckeye defense still struggled through the season’s first two weeks.And that struggle, combined with a poor day from the OSU offense, led to a 35-21 loss to Virginia Tech in the second game of the year.The next week, against Kent State, the defense pitched its first shutout of the season as a new linebacker — freshman Raekwon McMillan — burst onto the scene with a team-high seven total tackles and two sacks.But over the next nine weeks, the Buckeyes gave up at least 24 points seven times.Those high-scoring outputs seemed to be a bad omen going into the Big Ten Championship Game, but OSU — which was led in tackles by Lee — shut out a top-15 opponent as it beat Wisconsin, 59-0.Then Lee was named the defensive player of the game against Alabama, and the Buckeyes shut down Marcus Mariota in the title game, beating Oregon, 42-20.Now even with Grant departing, it’s clear that the “Silver Bullets” are making their return, and the linebackers will be the first ones out of the chamber in 2015.Look no further than Lee’s upper arm — where he has a fresh “Silver Bullets” tattoo, according to an Instagram post — to see that the linebackers have embraced a new mindset.They’ll be backing one of the best lines around once again next season, but led by Perry, who had 124 total tackles last season, Lee, who had 7.5 sacks and 16.5 tackles for loss in his first year playing linebacker full time, and McMillan, who showcased a skillset that could make him one of the nation’s best next season, the linebackers might prove to be the best position unit on the team.So much for question marks. read more

Hundreds of ancient earthworks resembling Stonehenge found in Amazon rainforest

first_img“Our evidence that Amazonian forests have been managed by indigenous peoples long before European contact should not be cited as justification for the destructive, unsustainable land-use practiced today. “It should instead serve to highlight the ingenuity of past subsistence regimes that did not lead to forest degradation, and the importance of indigenous knowledge for finding more sustainable land-use alternatives”. Using state-of-the-art methods, the team members were able to reconstruct 6000 years of vegetation and fire history around two enclosure sites. They found that humans heavily altered bamboo forests for millennia and clearings were made to build the geoglyphsThe research was published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.  Both round and square enclosures were discovered by the drones, which probably were ritual sites Credit:Salman Kahn and José Iriarte Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Hundreds of ancient earthworks resembling those at Stonehenge were built in the Amazon rainforest, scientists have discovered after flying drones over the area.The findings prove for the first time that prehistoric settlers in Brazil cleared large wooded areas to create huge enclosures meaning that the ‘pristine’ rainforest celebrated by ecologists is actually relatively new. The ditched enclosures, in Acre state in the western Brazilian Amazon, have been concealed for centuries by trees, but modern deforestation has allowed 450 to emerge from the undergrowth.  They were discovered after scientists from the UK and Brazil flew drones over last year. The earthworks, known by archaeologists as ‘geoglyphs’ probably date from around the year zero. The research was carried out by Jennifer Watling, post-doctoral researcher at the Museum of Archaeology and Ethnography, University of São Paulo, when she was studying for a PhD at the University of Exeter. The monuments look like early phases at Stonehenge in Wiltshire, say experts Credit:Salman Kahn and José Iriarte Although Stonehenge is around 2,500 years older than the geoglyphs found in Brazil, they are likely to represent a similar period in social development. The enclosures are unlikely to represent the border of villages, since archaeologists have recovered very few artefacts during excavation. It is thought they were used only sporadically, perhaps as ritual gathering places, as they have no defensive features such as post holes for fences.  Both round and square enclosures were discovered by the drones, which probably were ritual sites  Some sites had multiple banks and ditches Credit: Salman Kahn and José Iriarte Stonehenge Credit:English Heritage  Their discovery also reverses assumptions that the rainforest ecosystem has been untouched by humans.“The fact that these sites lay hidden for centuries beneath mature rainforest really challenges the idea that Amazonian forests are ‘pristine ecosystems,'” added Dr Watling. Some sites had multiple banks and ditches  The monuments look like early phases at Stonehenge in Wiltshire, say experts  Although the function of the sites is unknown Dr Watling said they resembled Neolithic causewayed enlosures found at sites such as Stonehenge in Wiltshire, although they appear to be more regular. “It is likely that the geoglyphs were used for similar functions to the Neolithic causewayed enclosures, i.e. public gathering, ritual sites,” said Dr Watling. “It is interesting to note that the format of the geoglyphs, with an outer ditch and inner wall enclosure, are what classicly describe henge sites. The earliest phases at Stonhenge consisted of a similarly layed-out enclosure.” Stonehenge last_img read more