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Dolphins assistant, former Wake coach Caldwell to take leave for health issue

DAVIE, Fla. (AP) — Miami Dolphins assistant coach Jim Caldwell will take a leave of absence to address health issues that he says “require my full attention.”

Caldwell was hired in February to be the Dolphins’ assistant head coach and quarterbacks coach. He was expected to help in the development of second-year quarterback Josh Rosen, who is rebooting his career after a shaky rookie 2018 season with the Arizona Cardinals.

Caldwell will instead spend this season as a consultant.

The precise nature of his health issue was not disclosed by Caldwell or the Dolphins.

In a release issued by the Dolphins on Saturday, the 64-year-old Caldwell said, “I will be stepping back due to some medical complications that require my full attention.”

Miami coach Brian Flores said the team’s focus is on Caldwell’s health and providing him support. Flores also intends to take advantage of Caldwell’s 17 years of NFL coaching experience.

“With his knowledge and experience, Jim has been an invaluable member to our coaching staff and will continue to serve as a sounding board for me throughout the season,” Flores said.

Caldwell worked with Peyton Manning for nine seasons, first as the Indianapolis Colts’ assistant head coach and quarterbacks coach, and then as their head coach. He then served as an assistant coach with the Baltimore Ravens before taking over as head coach of the Detroit Lions from 2014-17.

Caldwell was the head coach at Wake Forest in 1993-2000.

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MAN CHARGED IN SHOOTING OF GIANTS DRAFT PICK AND TEAMMATE

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — An 18-year-old Kansas man has been charged in the April attack that wounded New York Giants draft pick Corey Ballentine and killed one of his Washburn University teammates, Dwane Simmons.

Francisco Alejandro Mendez was charged Friday with first-degree murder, attempted first-degree murder and five counts of aggravated battery in the April 28 attack, the Shawnee County district attorney’s office said in a news release.

Mendez is being held on a $1 million bond. His case doesn’t appear yet in online court records, and his attorney, Victoria Chundak-Gallaway, in an unrelated criminal case didn’t immediately reply to a phone message left Saturday at her office.

The two Washburn defensive backs were outside of an off-campus house party hours after the Giants selected Ballentine in the sixth round of the draft when someone opened fire from a vehicle, killing Simmons and wounding Ballentine, who has since recovered.

Washburn football coach Craig Schurig told the Topeka Capital-Journal that he called Ballentine on Friday to inform him that Mendez had been charged.

Ballentine, who was shot in the rear end, missed the Giants’ rookie minicamp in early May while he recovered. He played in 46 games as a cornerback for Washburn, finishing with 186 tackles, four forced fumbles, three fumble recoveries and five interceptions. In his final season, he won the Cliff Harris Award, which goes to the small college defensive player of the year.

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