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BC-TX--Texas Sports Digest 1 pm, TX

December 20, 2018

Good afternoon! Here’s a look at AP’s Texas sports coverage. Questions about coverage plans are welcome and should be directed to the AP Dallas bureau at 972-991-2100, or at 1-800-442-7189. Email aptexas@ap.org

Reminder: This information is not for publication or broadcast, and these coverage plans are subject to change. Expected stories may not develop, or late-breaking and more newsworthy events may take precedence. Advisories and digests will keep you up to date. All times are Central.

For up-to-the minute information on AP’s coverage, visit Coverage Plan at newsroom.ap.org

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HOCKEY:

NHL:

HKN--BLACKHAWKS-STARS

DALLAS _ The Stars face Chicago after opening an extended stretch of mostly home games by beating Calgary to stop a four-game losing streak. Dallas swept the season series with the Blackhawks last season for the first time in more than 10 years. UPCOMING: 650 words, photos. Game starts 7:30 p.m. CST.

...

BASKETBALL:

NBA:

BKN--MAVERICKS-CLIPPERS

LOS ANGELES _ The Los Angeles Clippers, who have dropped four straight, host the Dallas Mavericks, who have lost their last three. By Joe Reedy. UPCOMING. 600 words, photos. Game starts at 9:30 p.m. CST.

BKN--ROCKETS-HEAT

MIAMI _ Houston, which made an NBA-record 26 3-pointers on Wednesday in Washington, completes a back-to-back when it visits Miami. By Basketball Writer Tim Reynolds. UPCOMING: 650 words, photos. Game starts at 7 p.m. CST.

COLLEGE/MEN:

BKC--TEXAS-BASKETBALL ARENA

AUSTIN, Texas _ University of Texas regents are expected Thursday to approve a plan to build a new campus basketball arena. UPCOMING: 150 words, more on merits.

BKC--UTAH ST-HOUSTON

HOUSTON _ The Houston Cougars look to improve to 11-0 when they host Utah State. By Jeremy Rakes. 600 words.

BKC--TEXAS TECH-DUKE

NEW YORK -- No. 2 Duke (10-1) plays No. 12 Texas Tech at Madison Square Garden. By Dan Gelston. UPCOMING. 650 words, with photos. Game starts at 6 p.m. CST.

BKC--ARKANSAS-PINE BLUFF-NORTH TEXAS

Arkansas-Pine Bluff plays North Texas at UNT Coliseum. UPCOMING: 150 words, more on merit.

BKC--UTSA-TEXAS A&M-CC

UTSA plays Texas A&M-CC at American Bank Center. UPCOMING: 150 words, more on merit.

BKC--PRAIRIE VIEW A&M-SEATTLE

Prairie View A&M plays Seattle at Redhawk Center. UPCOMING: 150 words, more on merit.

...

FOOTBALL:

NFL:

FBN--BUCCANEERS-COWBOYS PREVIEW

ARLINGTON, Texas _ NFL rushing leader Ezekiel Elliott and the Dallas Cowboys failed in their first shot at clinching the NFC East title. They’ll try again Sunday against Tampa Bay, already eliminated from the playoff race. By Pro Football Writer Schuyler Dixon. UPCOMING: 750 words, photos.

FBN--FREDERICK’S HEADSET

FRISCO, Texas _ Travis Frederick has known for a while that a nerve disorder would end up sidelining the Dallas Cowboys center all season. He’s tried to help in other ways for an offensive line that’s battled other injuries as well. By Pro Football Writer Schuyler Dixon. UPCOMING: 650 words, photos.

FBN--TEXANS-HOPKINS’ HANDS

HOUSTON _ DeAndre Hopkins believes if a ball comes anywhere near him he should catch it. That belief has led to some amazing catches throughout his career and lately he seems to make at least one a game that could lead a highlight reel, a skill that has helped the Texans turn around their season and leave them a win away from clinching the AFC South title. By Kristie Rieken. 600 words.

COLLEGE:

FBC--CFP-CLEMSON-EXPERIENCE MATTERS

CLEMSON, S.C. _ Amari Rodgers was a freshman trying to fit into Clemson’s plans a year ago when the Tigers opened practice for the College Football Playoff. He didn’t have to go far to have any questions answered. “Last year, it was my first time, so I was kind of asking around, Deon Cain and Ray Ray (McCloud), how they prepared for it because they won a national championship the year before,” Rodgers said. “So I just followed their ways.” This time around, Rodgers will be able to do some of the leading. The sophomore receiver is among 21 of 22 starters for the Tigers with playoff experience and said that’s a huge edge to carry into this year’s latest playoff run, which starts Dec. 29 at the Cotton Bowl in Texas vs. Notre Dame. By Pete Iacobelli. SENT: 680 words, with photos.

FBC--CFP-EXPERIENCED CLEMSON

CLEMSON, S.C. _ Clemson All-American tackle Christian Wilkins is prepping for his fourth appearance in the College Football Playoff and probably knows his coach’s practice plans better than they do. And Wilkins is not alone on the second-ranked Tigers (13-0, CFP No. 2) who certainly have the edge on experience over No. 3 Notre Dame (12-0, CFP No. 3) at the Cotton Bowl in Arlington, Texas. By Pete Iacobelli. UPCOMING, 600 words.

HIGH SCHOOL:

_ FBH--CLASS 6A ALL-STATE TEAM

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BASEBALL:

MLB:

BBA--ASTROS-SMITH

HOUSTON _ Astros reliever Joe Smith has had surgery to repair a ruptured Achilles tendon and will be out six-to-eight months. Smith had the surgery on his left leg on Tuesday after getting hurt while working out last week, the team said Thursday. The 34-year-old right-hander was 5-1 with a 3.74 ERA in 56 appearances for Houston last season. SENT: 120 words.

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