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    There have been no zeroes in Week 0 in N.J., check out some hot takes from the first and second day of games from the Garden State.

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    Dogs and cats throughout the Garden State await adoption.

    Some fun and interesting facts about cats and dogs from Nationwide pet insurance:

    *  Dogs only sweat from the bottoms of their feet, the only way they can discharge heat is by panting. Cats do not have sweat glands.

    *  Dogs have about 100 different facial expressions, most of them made with the ears.

    *  A cat can jump as much as seven times its height.

    *  Dogs do not have an appendix.

    *  Cats have over one hundred vocal sounds, while dogs only have about ten.

    *  Using their swiveling ears like radar dishes, experiments have shown that dogs can locate the source of a sound in 6/100ths of a second.

    *  A cat's tongue is scratchy because it's lined with papillae--tiny elevated backwards hooks that help to hold prey in place.

    *  When faced with the choice of going the way around something that untangles herself or the way that makes it worse, my dog will choose the wrong way 101 times out of 100.

    Greg Hatala may be reached at Follow him on Twitter @GregHatala. Find Greg Hatala on Facebook.

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    A Top 10 upset shifted the football Top 20 after an eventful Week 0.

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    Significant delays due to volume are being reported up and down the Garden State Parkway as the holiday weekend comes to a close.


    You probably saw this coming.  

    In what could be the most predictable event of the year, pockets of significant traffic delays are beginning to appear up and down the Garden State Parkway as the holiday weekend comes to a close, according to the Department of Transportation's traffic monitoring website,

    A 16-mile backup is being reported from exits 77 to 91 along the Garden State Parkway north, in and around the Brick area. 

    Farther north, congestion is also being reported from exit 98 in Wall to exit 109 near Tinton Falls, according to the DOT.  

    A two-mile delay is also being reported on the Garden State Parkway north near the Driscoll Bridge.  

    The Parkway remains fairly clear farther South, but several feeder roads like Routes 47 and 50 are also reporting congestion due to heavy volume.  

    Stephen Stirling may be reached at Follow him on Twitter @sstirling. Find him on Facebook.

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    The median N.J. teacher salary in the top district is more than $100,000.

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    A look at the top players at ball-handling positions for the 2018 season.

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    Where do you need to be on the first week of boys soccer season?

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    New Jersey's largest police union has weighed in to the debate over Nike's ad campaign featuring Colin Kaepernick, who was the first NFL player to kneel during the national anthem, to protest police brutality. The union posted a photo of Pat Tillman, who gave up a multi-million dollar NFL contract to become an Army Ranger after the Sept. 11 attacks.

    New Jersey's largest police union has weighed in to the debate over Nike's ad campaign featuring former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who was the first player to kneel during the national anthem to protest police brutality and racial injustice.

    Kaepernick became the face of a Nike ad that reads "Believe in something, even if it means sacrificing everything" for the 30th anniversary of the company's iconic "Just Do It" slogan.

    In a tweet Tuesday, the New Jersey State Policemen's Benevolent Association offered a riff on the controversial ad campaign. The post included a photo of Pat Tillman, who gave up a multi-million dollar NFL contract to become an Army Ranger after the Sept. 11 attacks.

    The Arizona Cardinals player died in Afghanistan in 2004 from what was later revealed as a case of friendly-fire.

    "We just want everyone to know what it really means to....," the PBA tweeted with Tillman's photo, including the same line about sacrifice from Nike's ad.

    Though some NFL players take a knee for differing reasons, PBA President Patrick Colligan said the former quarterback has been clear in his views about law enforcement.

    "He wears socks with pigs on it," Colligan told NJ Advance Media. "I think it sends a poor message."

    Colligan said there were better role models for a Nike ad than Kaepernick. Still, the union leader did not call for a boycott of Nike gear and added that he respects the rights of people to speak out.

    "That's what great about America," said Colligan, whose organization represents more than 30,000 members in municipal, county and state agencies.

    The PBA joined others to use the Tillman comparison to criticize Kaepernick's Nike ad on social media. The fallen soldier's widow, Marie Tillman, issued a statement last year urging people not to politicized her husband's service.

    Family members have not commented on calls for Nike to feature Tillman instead.

    "As a football player and soldier, Pat inspired countless Americans to unify. It is my hope that his memory should always remind people that we must come together," she said last September. "Pat's service, along with that of every man and woman's service, should never be politicized in a way that divides us. We are too great of a country for that."

    Last week, Kaepernick scored a legal victory in his grievance against the NFL and its 32 teams when an arbitrator allowed his case to continue to trial. The quarterback claims that owners conspired to keep him out of the league because of his protests of social injustice.

    Kaepernick contended the owners violated their collective bargaining agreement with players by conspiring to keep him off teams. His case hinges on whether owners worked together rather than decided individually to not sign Kaepernick.

    - The Associated Press contributed to this report

    Noah Cohen may be reached at Follow him on Twitter @noahycFind on Facebook.


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    The baby's head was already starting to pop out when the officer arrived

    An off-duty sheriff's officer was awakened early Sunday morning by an unusual call for help.

    The daughter of Essex County's jail warden was about to give birth, and they needed an escort to the hospital from their Piscataway home. 

    Officer Kaisha Madera, a seven-year veteran of the Essex County Sheriff's Office, rushed to the home of warden Charles Green -- her boyfriend's uncle -- arrived to find the warden's daughter, Rajine Green, did not need a ride anymore.

    The expectant mother was on the floor and in labor.

    Rajine's water had already broken, and she was in the final phases of labor, the sheriff's office said. 

    "My dad wasn't home and I really needed a ride, because the contractions were getting to a point where I just couldn't tolerate it," Rajine told NJ Advance Media. 

    Madera, a mother of two teenagers, safely guided the baby's head and shoulders out, Sheriff Armando Fontoura said in a statement. 

    After Madera cleaned up the newborn -- who weighed in at 7 pounds, 13 ounces --  she then wrapped her in a blanket and called 911 for that ride.

    "She wanted to make a grand entrance, and she did," Green added. 

    Green and her newborn daughter Koren were taken to St. Peter's University Hospital in New Brunswick for further observation, and are expected to return home Tuesday evening, the sheriff's office said.

    "The whole experience was a bit of a shock to all three of us, but everything turned out for the best," Madera said in a statement Tuesday.

    Green, who was still in the hospital Tuesday, praised Madera for her help. 

    "I know she was pretty scared, even though she wasn't showing it," Green said. "I love her, and I appreciate everything she's done for me and my baby." 

    She also shared some wisdom for other expecting mothers.

    "If you're having contractions, don't wait too long for that call from the doctor," she said. "Go straight to the hospital." 

    Gianluca D'Elia may be reached at gdelia@njadvancemedia.comFollow him on Twitter @gianluca_delia. Find on Facebook.

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    It's New Jersey vs. Pennsylvania in three nationally ranked showdowns and multiple rivalry games highlight the action.

    WashingtonTwp.JPGUnder second-year coach Mark Hendricks, Kingsway hits the road for this WJFL Royal matchup looking to extend its winning streak to five games against the Minutemen. The Dragons won last year's contest 25-0. The game will also mark the debut for Washington Township coach and 2008 graduate Mike Schatzman. The Minutemen are coming off back-to-back losing seasons. 

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    More than 79 percent of the firearms seized by New Jersey law enforcement during the first six months of the year were first purchased out of state.

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    A look at some of the top linemen, tight ends, kickers and punters in New Jersey this season

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    Which teams have the best dual threat offensive combinations?

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    Heading back to school through the years in New Jersey.

    This is a totally unscientific and opinionated theory ... but I think I know why it was harder to go back to school at the end of the summer when I was a kid than it is now.

    We spent more time outdoors. School takes place indoors.

    treeclimb.jpgClimbing trees, for instance. 

    This isn't a rant about "kids nowadays," it's simply a pragmatic look at the difference between then and now. Then, not as many homes had air conditioning as now; going outside didn't seem like a bad choice. There weren't as many things to DO inside, and again, I'm not making any judgments about imagination and creativity; there were only a handful of channels on TV and no videotapes or video games.

    MORE: Vintage photos around New Jersey

    I think the main reason we saw the start of school with foreboding was that we'd spent most of our time outdoors all summer, and school was going to place us indoors for a solid seven hours. Add in how many new advancements have come to the classroom -- technology, activities and, in many, air conditioning -- and I'd bet we would have been just a bit more eager to go back.

    Well, okay, maybe not "eager." Perhaps "accepting."

    Here's a gallery of vintage photos of the start of another school year in New Jersey. And here are links to more galleries you'll enjoy.

    Vintage photos of going back to school in N.J.

    Vintage photos of schools and students in N.J.

    Vintage photos of returning to school in N.J.

    Greg Hatala may be reached at Follow him on Twitter @GregHatala. Find Greg Hatala on Facebook.

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    The Garden State has a whole lot more than gardens.

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    A look at the top linebackers and defensive backs in New Jersey this season

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    James Dimino allegedly sold heroin and fentanyl to a 31-year-old man who died May 16, 2016.

    A man has been arrested and charged with selling the drugs that led to another man's fatal overdose more than two years ago.

    James Dimino, 33, of Middlesex borough, was charged on Tuesday with strict liability for a drug-induced death and distribution of a controlled dangerous substance. Middlesex County Prosecutor Andrew Carey announced the charges in a news release.

    Dimino allegedly sold a combination of heroin and fentanyl to a 31-year-old Middlesex County man who died May 16, 2016. The county Medical Examiner reported that the man died from heroin and fentanyl toxicity.

    Borough police investigated leads in the years following the man's death and eventually learned of a drug transaction between Dimino and the victim, the office said.

    Dimino is in the Middlesex County Adult Correction Center and has a detention hearing Friday in Superior Court in New Brunswick.

    Anyone with information on the case can contact borough Detective Paul Steffanelli at 732-356-1900 ext. 311 or prosecutor's Detective Michael Connelly at 732-745-3254.

    Joe Brandt can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @JBrandt_NJ. Find on Facebook.

    Have a tip? Tell us. 


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    Charlie Rogers, a Manalapan Regional HS standout who played for the Seahawks and Bills, threatened to blitz an opposing team's 11-year-old player until he was forced out of a game

    Charlie Rogers Bills ball Getty.jpgCharlie Rogers, before becoming an American Youth Football coach.  

    A former NFL player could be suspended from his youth football coaching job in Matawan over an expletive-laden voicemail message threatening to blitz an opposing 11-year-old player until he was forced out of the game, according to a published report.

    Charlie Rogers, a punt returner, running back and wide receiver for the Seattle Seahawks, Buffalo Bills and Miami Dolphins from 1999 to 2003, is the head coach the midget-class team in Matawan's American Youth Football program.

    Rogers, 42, who is also an assistant coach at St. John Vianney High School, left the message on Aug. 25, for Christ Schuster, who is a former Matawan AYF president and the father of the player being threatened, The Asbury Park Press reported.

    "We are going to blitz every (expletive) play util your guy comes out of the game," Rogers can be heard saying on the message in reference to the Oct. 7 game.

    Hear the voicemail Rogers allegedly left below.

    Rogers, who declined to comment, was angry that Schuster had pulled his son from the Matawan team and placed him in the East Brunswick program, the Press reported. Jersey Shore American Youth Football, the league that includes Matawan, will hold a hearing to decide what action to take against Rogers, including a suspension of one game or more, the report said.

    Neither Rogers nor Schuster could be reached. American Youth Football officials from Matawan, the Jersey Shore Conference and the organization's national office did not respond to requests for comment. Officials at St. John Vianny also did not respond.

    Matawan's local AYF program was criticized on social media for failing to take action on its own against Rogers, a Matawan Regional High School standout who as a rookie with the Seahawks in 1999 led the NFL in yards per punt return.

    And word of the controversy has begun to spread around the Garden State's youth football community. For example, the Manalapan Youth Football Association posted about it on the associations Facebook page.


    Steve Strunsky may be reached at Follow him on Twitter @SteveStrunsky. Find on Facebook

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    These are the big names and future stars of college football.

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    While home values decreased in almost all counties from 2008 to 2012, the markets closest to New York City have bounced back in recent years.

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