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Volume 24 No. 214
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Names In The News

Lightning Owner JEFF VINIK said that he and other investors will "create a venture capital fund" with as much as $50M or more to "support startup entrepreneurs, some with direct grants." Vinik said that he is "taking a major equity stake in the startup accelerator DreamIt, which works with startups focused on health care and urban technology to help them raise capital quickly." Vinik said that he "expects to end up with an ownership stake in the company equal to that of its founders" (TAMPA BAY TIMES, 12/6). N.J.-based bioelectronic medicine company electroCore has announced that two groups associated with Vinik were "among the investors that participated in a round of fundraising" that brought in a little more than $70M for the company (TAMPA BAY TIMES, 12/5).

COACHING CAROUSEL: Oregon football coach WILLIE TAGGERT "received a six-year," $30M deal to become the new coach for Florida State (TALLAHASSEE DEMOCRAT, 12/6)....Memphis football coach MIKE NORVELL agreed to a five-year, $13M contract extension to remain in his position. Sources said that Norvell’s new contract "runs through" the '22 season. His contract makes him one of the "highest-paid Group of Five coaches in the country" (Memphis COMMERCIAL APPEAL, 12/6)....According to reports, UCF hired Missouri offensive coordinator JOSH HEUPEL as its new coach and "agreed to a five-year contract that pays him a guaranteed" $1.7M (ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, 12/6).

NAMES: Michigan State men’s basketball coach TOM IZZO recently appeared in the audience on the show "JUDGE MATHIS," featuring retired Michigan judge GREG MATHIS. One litigant on the show said he is an Ohio State fan, and Mathis “points out to the man that sitting directly behind him is a college basketball coach who routinely beats his favorite team.” Izzo “looks on smiling and waving.” Seated next to Izzo is Michigan State assistant coach MIKE GARLAND (MLIVE.com, 12/5)....NBA Commissioner ADAM SILVER and Activision Blizzard CEO BOBBY KOTICK were named to the “Bloomberg 50:” a list of execs, entrepreneurs, experts and entertainers whose ’17 merits applause and recognition (ECONOMICTIMES.com, 12/2)....Newly appointed Nebraska football coach SCOTT FROST’s count of Twitter followers has “spiked since his hiring on Saturday.” On Friday he “had about 50,000” and by Monday his tally “rose by 30,000 (OMAHA.com, 12/5)....Boston College AD MARTIN JARMOND and his wife JESSICA “welcomed their second child into the world on Monday night” (BOSTON HERALD, 12/6).