6:45 LRN Sportscast July 4

On July 4th,  one sporting event takes precedent over all others…the annual Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest on Coney Island. The contest returns to its familiar location at Nathan’s Famous Restaurant after being forced to switch the past two years due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Joey Chestnut, generally considered the greatest hot dog eater of all time, will defend his crown after a record-breaking performance in 2020, with an incredible 76 hot dogs and buns “eaten” in 10 minutes. Defending women’s champion Michelle Lesco will try to win for the second consecutive year when the women’s championship starts at 10 am CT.

Chestnut says this year he’s looking to reach 80 hot dogs. The contest airs on ESPN.

It is confirmed that Zion Williamson has signed his extension with the New Orleans Pelicans. Williamson agreed to a deal that will keep him with the Pels for another five seasons. The deal has a base value of $193 million, but could be worth as much as $231 million should he make an All-NBA team, earn MVP, or Defensive Player of the Year next season.

The Pelicans are also rumored to be engaged in discussions about potentially acquiring All-NBA forward Kevin Durant. Any trade for Durant would likely have to include Brandon Ingram; leaving Pelicans fans conflicted in their desires to see the team add an all-time great or stick with the team and player they have fallen in love with over the past three seasons.

LSU football adds another commitment to its 2023 recruiting class. Joshua Mickens, a four-star edge rusher from Indianapolis, verbally committed Sunday morning to the Tigers. He is ranked as the No. 164 overall player and 18th-best pass rusher in the country according to the 247Sports Composite rankings. His announcement comes two days after four-star edge rusher Jaxon Howard committed to LSU. The Tigers have eight recruits lined up for next year and expect more commitments to come this week.

Four-star defensive lineman Dashawn Womack, four-star defensive end Darron Reed, and three-star cornerback Ashton Stamps reveal their decisions today.

Then three-star cornerback Jeremiah Hughes announces his choice July 7.