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Idaho Murder Update and a Revolutionary Phosphate Project

Quote of the Week:

“The color of springtime is in the flowers; the color of winter is in the imagination.” – Terri Guillemets

Fact of the Week:

A famous thoroughbred racehorse from the 18th-century was named Potoooooooo after a humorous misunderstanding. The chestnut colt was born in 1773, sired by the undefeated Eclipse. Willoughby Bertie, the breeder, intended to call his colt Potato and instructed his stable boy to write the horse’s name on the feed bin.

The stable boy, misunderstanding Bertie, wrote Potoooooooo on the bin, thinking that Bertie wanted the name 'Pot’ followed by ‘eight o’s'. The name Potoooooooo so amused Bertie that he decided to keep it.

Potoooooooo would go on to win 34 races and was considered one of the greatest racehorses of the 18th century. He was retired in 1784 and sired several Epsom Derby Winners.

Horse Nation contributed to this article.

News Update:

Ethan Chapin, Madison Mogen, Kaylee Goncalves and Xana Kernodle. Via People Magazine

If you do a quick Google search of “College News” or “University News,” you’ll see that the Idaho University murder mystery continues to dominate the headlines. It’s a story we covered two weeks ago, yet it remains at the forefront of the media because of the mystifying circumstances.

There are still startlingly few pieces of evidence from which the police can work. The murder weapon has not been found, and no suspects have been identified. The police believe the murderer was a man, but they have not even been able to corroborate the tips that Kaylee Goncalves, one of the victims, had a stalker. Her family has held off holding a funeral for fear that the murderer will show up to it.

It is a bizarre and frightening case, made even more so by the police walking back their statement that there is no potential threat to the community by the murder. This is a situation we will continue to monitor as we hope for news that the murderer is found.

In the meantime, we’d like to add one bit of good news this week. Students at the University of Bath in England “are pioneering a system to extract harmful phosphates from wastewater to reuse them as fertilizer,” according to BBC.

Via Bioplastics News

Phosphate rock is found in only a handful of countries where it is mined and put into fertilizer. It then enters our body through food and is released into the water through our waste. Even in waste treatment centers it often remains at high levels, so that when it is released back into the environment, it, “in combination with nitrates, can cause eutrophication - excessive plant or algal growth that starves other life of light and oxygen, sometimes creating vast dead zones.”

The students and researchers working on the PhoBac Project, as it’s called, are hoping to genetically modify a bacteria which could be released into the wastewater at treatment plants. The hope is to extract and then recover the phosphate, before reusing it in fertilizer. It would allow a more sustainable path to harvesting phosphate and prevent the harmful algae blooms. Still, it may be a few more years before PhoBac receives regulatory approval.

ABC News and BBC News contributed to this article.

Sports Update:


The Men’s NCAA Soccer Tournament has been full of upsets, with Kentucky, the number one overall team, the latest to fall. The Wildcats lost 2-1 to Pittsburgh after giving up two second-half goals, including the second with under four minutes remaining. Pitt will now face unranked Portland in the quarterfinals. On the same half of the bracket, #12 UNC Greensboro upset #5 Stanford in penalties after a 1-1 tie, and they’ll face #13 Indiana, who beat Marshall 1-0.

On the other side of the draw, unranked Creighton (who previously beat #2 Washington) continued its run by topping #15 Tulsa, 2-1. They’ll face #7 Duke, who beat #10 FIU 1-0. Unranked Vermont beat UCLA 3-0 to advance to the quarters where they’ll face the highest seed remaining: ACC Champion and #3 overall, Syracuse, who topped #14 Cornell 1-0.

The quarterfinals will take place this Saturday, with the winners heading to Cary, North Carolina for the College Cup.

Want to win 50% off Last Cup Scaries’ Fire Island t-shirt? DM the correct answer of this riddle to lastcupclothing on Instagram, and if you’re the first person to respond correctly, we’ll send you a code! Previous winners are excluded.

What has one eye but can’t see?

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