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Morning Headlines: UA's Cancelled Football Opener Puts Money in Limbo; Heat Closes Dozens of Schools

Photo of a football

Here are your morning headlines for Tuesday, September 4:

  • University of Akron's cancelled football opener puts money in limbo;
  • Heat closes dozens of NE Ohio schools;
  • New Columbus entertainment complex sparks debate;
  • Toledo Zoo plans to revive a nearly-extinct species;
  • Lorain teen sentenced to 30 days in jail for bringing gun to school;
  • Columbus to host 2020 Gay Softball World Series;

University of Akron's cancelled football opener puts money in limbo

A big payday could be in limbo for the University of Akron's athletics department. The Zips football team travelled to Lincoln, Nebraska over the weekend to take on the Nebraska Cornhuskers in the season opener Saturday, but the game was cancelled due to lightning. Now, the Beacon Journal reports it is unclear if Nebraska will honor its contract to pay the Zips $1.17 million. There was speculation that the game would be played on Sunday, but UA officials said that would have been a logistical nightmare as the team had already checked out of its hotel for the nationally televised game. South Dakota State travelled to Iowa State over the weekend only to have its game cancelled. Iowa State reportedly honored its contract with SDSU and payed that school.

Heat closes dozens of NE Ohio schools

Dozens of schools and district buildings across Northeast Ohio are closed today due to the heat. In Akron Pfeiffer and Firestone Park elementary schools, Essex Early Learning Center, North, Ellet and Kenmore-Garfield high schools and Miller South School are all closed.

Eighteen Cleveland Metropolitan School District schools and buildings are closed, as well. And Elyria City Schools has cancelled all classes.

New Columbus entertainment complex sparks debate

A massive new entertainment complex is being planned north of Columbus that backers say will rival Cedar Point and Kings Island. Cleveland.com reports that construction is expected to start this year on the $2-billion, 350-acre Planet Oasis complex. Officials said it will include extreme sports, e-sports, water sports, and a health and wellness center. 

Some local residents expressed concern that the complex with effect property values, increase traffic, and alter the fast-disappearing rural atmosphere in Delaware County.

Toledo Zoo plans to revive a nearly-extinct species

The Toledo Zoo is planning to release thousands of young lake sturgeon in hopes of restoring a fish species in Lake Erie that is nearly extinct. The Blade reports the zoo will release about 3,000 juvenile sturgeon into the Maumee River on Oct. 6. The river that runs through Toledo is one of Lake Erie's largest tributaries. Lake sturgeon can live 100 years or more. The species was once abundant in Lake Erie but nearly disappeared by the early 1900s because of overfishing.

Lorain teen sentenced to 30 days in jail for bringing gun to school

A northeast Ohio teen who brought a gun to school earlier this year for what he said was self-protection has been sentenced to 30 days in jail. Eighteen-year-old Codsh'e Berger of Lorain pleaded guilty to carrying concealed weapons and illegal possession of a deadly weapon in a school zone. A Lorain County Judge Friday sentenced Berger to 12 months on each count, but told Berger he would grant judicial release after 30 days. Berger’s attorney says his client has no criminal record and had brought the gun to Lorain High School in May for protection. Cook said the teen could have accomplished that without bringing a gun to school.

Columbus to host 2020 Gay Softball World Series

Ohio's capital city is once again hosting theGay Softball World Series, dubbed the world's largest LGBT single sport, week-long athletic competition. The North American Gay Amateur Athletic Alliance on Sunday announced Columbus will host the 2020 series. It's the third time Columbus has hosted the event following the 2010 and 2015 competitions. Officials estimate the event will bring more than 5,000 participants from 45 cities, 25 states, and several Canadian provinces. Tampa, Florida, is hosting the 2018 Gay Softball World Series this month, with Kansas City, Missouri, hosting in 2019.

Mark Arehart joined the award-winning WKSU news team as its arts/culture reporter in 2017. Before coming to Northeast Ohio, Arehart hosted Morning Edition and covered the arts scene for Delaware Public Media. He previously worked for KNKX in Seattle, Kansas Public Radio, and KYUK in Bethel, Alaska.