BC-AP Sports Digest
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HOUSTON — The Houston Texans wanted to honor their late owner and founder Robert “Bob” McNair, who died last week at age 81. They knew the perfect way to do that Monday night was to keep their winning streak going.. By Kristie Rieken. SENT: 930 words, photos.
— FBN--TITANS-FAILED FOURTH DOWN — By Kristie Rieken. SENT: 590 words, photos.
RALEIGH, N.C. — Mack Brown turned around North Carolina’s football program once before, and the Tar Heels believe he could do it again. The school has reached an agreement in principle with Brown on a deal for him to return to Chapel Hill as its next football coach, a person involved in the negotiations told The Associated Press late Monday night. By Aaron Beard. SENT: 610 words, photos.
BKC--T25-NORTH DAKOTA ST-GONZAGA
SPOKANE, Wash. — North Dakota State didn’t figure to pose too much trouble for Gonzaga on the day the Bulldogs rose to No. 1 in The Associated Press Top 25. The Bison didn’t. By Nicholas K. Geranios. SENT: 730 words, photos.
DURHAM, N.C. — Duke’s star-studded freshmen are facing another first, one not many expected this soon — if ever — during their presumably short college careers. Bouncing back from a loss. By Joedy McCreary. UPCOMING: 860 words, photos by 3 a.m.
FBN--BEHIND THE CALL
Von Miller declared earlier this season that his job was to “sack quarterbacks and tell jokes.” With a-half a sack to show for chasing around Ben Roethlisberger all afternoon, Denver’s superstar chose not to talk about the Broncos grappling their way back to relevance but instead channeled Bill Belichick and his “We’re onto Cincinnati” credo following a stirring 24-17 win over the Steelers. By Football Writer Arnie Stapleton. UPCOMING: 960 words, photos by 3 a.m.
FBO--ALLIANCE QB DRAFT
How often do football fans hear “It’s all about the quarterbacks?” On Tuesday night, it absolutely will be. The Alliance of American Football, an eight-team spring league that begins play the weekend after the Super Bowl, will stage a “protect or pick” quarterback draft, which broadcast partner CBS Sports Network will televise live from Las Vegas. By Football Writer Barry Wilner. UPCOMING: 570 words, photos by 3 a.m.
— FBN--JAGUARS-HACKETT FIRED — By Mark Long. SENT: 600 words, photos.
— FBN--PATRIOTS-STRONG RETURNS — By Kyle Hightower. SENT: 800 words, photos.
— FBN-RESURGENT BRONCOS — By Pro Football Writer Arnie Stapleton. SENT: 900 words, photos.
— FBN--RAVENS-QUARTERBACKS — By David Ginsburg. SENT: 660 words, photos.
— FBN--SEAHAWKS-PASSING GRADE — By Tim Booth. SENT: 740 words, photos.
— FBN--MESSY STEELERS — By Will Graves. SENT: 750 words, photos.
— FBN--VIKINGS-TOUGH STRETCH — By Pro Football Writer Dave Campbell. SENT: 650 words, photos.
— FBN--SAINTS-YOUNG RECEIVERS — By Brett Martel. SENT: 830 words, photos.
— FBN--49ERS-FOSTER — SENT: 640 words, photos.
— FBN--CHARGERS-GORDON — By Joe Reedy. SENT: 690 words, photos.
— FBN--BUILDING BROWNS — By Tom Withers. SENT: 860 words, photos.
— FBN--RAIDERS-GRUDEN — By Pro Football Writer Josh Dubow. SENT: 680 words, photos.
— FBN--BUCCANEERS-PIERRE-PAUL — By Fred Goodall. SENT: 680 words, photos.
OAKLAND, Calif. — Ever the perfectionist and competitor, Kevin Durant knows he should have scored well more than 50 points if a few more shots had fallen. “I’m pretty sure all my teammates felt that way,” the typically efficient Golden State star said. By Janie McCauley. SENT: 840 words, photos.
WASHINGTON — Even the Wizards seemed surprised by the way they won. Bradley Beal said he couldn’t have imagined allowing the opposing starting guards to combine for 90 points and still get a victory. “No sir. Absolutely not. No sir,” Beal said. “Not at all. It’s amazing we pulled it off still.” SENT: 710 words, photos.
PHILADELPHIA —Caught at a crossroads between a full-blown rebuild and a legitimate playoff push, the Philadelphia Flyers fired general manager Ron Hextall on Monday, the latest front-office leader to fail to win the franchise’s first Stanley Cup in 44 years. The Flyers might not be done cleaning house. By Dan Gelston. SENT: 900 words, photos.
BUFFALO, N.Y. —The Buffalo Sabres are on such a roll, captain Jack Eichel was having difficulty recalling the last time they lost. Nine games — and nine wins — later, the Sabres are the NHL’s biggest surprise two months into the season. By Hockey Writer John Wawrow. SENT: 930 words, photos.
FBC--T25-SEC CHAMPIONSHIP-WIN & IN
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. —Alabama players have been through the uncertainty before, and didn’t like it. The top-ranked Crimson Tide advanced into the College Football Playoffs after ending the 2017 regular season with a loss. This team’s resume also might be impressive enough to survive a defeat to No. 4 Georgia in Saturday’s Southeastern Conference championship game in Atlanta, but the Tide (12-0, 8-0 SEC) would certainly prefer to go ahead and lock it up this time. By John Zenor. SENT: 680 words, photos.
FBC--BIG TEN CHAMPIONSHIP
EVANSTON, Ill. —The last time the stakes were this high for Northwestern, coach Pat Fitzgerald was a star linebacker on a team that captured the nation’s imagination. A Rose Bowl run snapped a string of 23 losing seasons and made the Wildcats a feel-good story in 1995. More than two decades later, No. 21 Northwestern is one win away from a return trip. By Andrew Seligman. SENT: 890 words, photos.
FBC--T25-BIG 12 CHAMPIONSHIP
AUSTIN, Texas —The last time Texas played in the Big 12 championship, the Longhorns were wrapping a decade of 10 wins every season and appeared set for a future of winning a whole lot more. The decade that followed included a whole lot of losing and got two head coaches — Mack Brown and Charlie Strong — shoved out the door. By Jim Vertuno. SENT: 780 words, photos.
— FBC--NC STATE-NORTH CAROLINA BRAWL — SENT: 350 words, photos.
— FBC--T25-LSU-TEXAS A&M-FINE — SENT: 130 words.
EUGENE, Ore. — Trayvon Reed scored 23 points and John Jones added 20 to help Texas Southern shock No. 18 Oregon with an 89-84 victory Monday night. Reed, a 7-foot-2 senior, made all nine of his shots and also was 5-for-5 from the foul line for the Tigers (2-4), who were 24-point underdogs. It was just the fourth nonconference loss at home for the Ducks since Matthew Knight Arena opened in 2011. SENT: 600 words, photos.
BKC--T25-TOP 25 THIS WEEK
Michigan’s follow-up to its national championship game appearance has been impressive so far. Despite losing three key players, the defensive-minded Wolverines have yet to lose this season and blew out then-No. 8 Villanova in a title-game rematch. Two big tests come this week. By Basketball Writer John Marshall. UPCOMING: 770 words, photos by 3 a.m.
BKC--COLLEGE BKB POLL
Gonzaga jumps to No. 1 after stopping the Duke juggernaut in the Maui Invitational title game without one of its best players. The Zags, third in last week’s poll, edge Kansas for the top ranking. Duke, Virginia and Nevada complete the top five. By Basketball Writer John Marshall. SENT: 650 words, photos.
BKW--WOMEN’S BKB POLL
NEW YORK — Notre Dame and UConn remain at the top of the AP’s poll setting up a 1-vs.-2 matchup Sunday. The Irish won the Vancouver Showcase and the Huskies took the Paradise Jam. They are followed in the rankings by Oregon, Baylor and Louisville. By Basketball Writer Doug Feinberg. SENT: 450 words, photos.
— BKC--OBIT-HANSON — SENT: 130 words, photos.
CHARLOTTE, Mich. —The former president of Michigan State University on Monday made her first court appearance since being charged with lying to investigators about what she knew during the investigation into sexual assault allegations against disgraced former sports doctor Larry Nassar. By David Eggert. SENT: 540 words, photos.
TEN--YEAR-END ATP RANKINGS
The Big 3 are the year-end top three, something that last happened in 2014. With Novak Djokovic at No. 1, Rafael Nadal at No. 2 and Roger Federer at No. 3 that trio of tennis greats leads the season’s final ATP rankings for the seventh time. By Tennis Writer Howard Fendrich. SENT: 480 words, photos.
TOKYO —A corruption case involving a powerful International Olympic Committee member is overshadowing meetings this week in Tokyo with local 2020 Olympic organizers, IOC officials, and the heads of 206 national Olympic committees. By Stephen Wade. SENT: 700 words, photos.
ATLANTA —The Atlanta Braves added a pair of free agents following their first division title in five years, agreeing to one-year contracts with third baseman Josh Donaldson and catcher Brian McCann. Donaldson agreed to a $23 million contract, according to a person familiar with the agreement. McCann’s $2 million deal was announced by Atlanta, where he was a seven-time All-Star from 2005-13. By Paul Newberry. SENT: 960 words, photos.
— BBA--ANGELS-YANKEES-BRIDWELL. SENT: 220 words, photos.
— BBO--ROYALS-CARDINALS-GREENE. SENT: 120 words.
— BBA--TWINS-CRON — SENT: 130 words.
— BBN--BRAVES-MCCANN — SENT: 130 words, photos.
— BBN--DIAMONDBACKS-COACHES — SENT: 130 words.
— BBN--DODGERS-JANSEN — SENT: 160 words.
— BBN--METS-RIGGLEMAN. SENT: 330 words, photos.
— BBO--POSTSEASON SHARES —SENT: 170 words.
SOC--COPA LIBERTADORES FINAL
BUENOS AIRES, Argentina — South America’s ruling soccer body will decide Tuesday whether to disqualify River Plate from the Copa Libertadores final, force the second leg with archrival Boca Juniors to be played behind closed doors or transfer the match to a neutral site. By Debora Rey. SENT: 500 words, photos.
— SOC--CHAMPIONS LEAGUE-LOOKAHEAD —By Ciaran Fahey. SENT: 850 words, photos.
— JAPAN-PACIFIC SWIM —SENT: 200 words, photos.
— BKN--NBA CAPSULES
— HKN--NHL CAPSULES
— BKC--T25-TOP 25 CAPSULES
— BKW--T25-TOP 25 CAPSULES
Tuesday Time Schedule (EST)
New York at Detroit, 7 p.m.
Atlanta at Miami, 7:30 p.m.
Toronto at Memphis, 8 p.m.
Indiana at Phoenix, 9 p.m.
L.A. Lakers at Denver, 9 p.m.
San Jose at Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Ottawa at Philadelphia, 7 p.m.
Anaheim at Tampa Bay, 7:30 p.m.
Carolina at Montreal, 7:30 p.m.
Pittsburgh at Winnipeg, 8 p.m.
Vegas at Chicago, 8 p.m.
Colorado at Nashville, 8 p.m.
Arizona at Minnesota, 8 p.m.
Dallas at Edmonton, 9 p.m.
Los Angeles at Vancouver, 10 p.m.
TOP 25 BASKETBALL
No. 3 Duke vs. Indiana, 9:30 p.m.
No. 5 Nevada at Loyola of Chicago, 8 p.m.
No. 9 Michigan State at Louisville, 7:30 p.m.
No. 13 Virginia Tech at Penn State, 7 p.m.
No. 14 Iowa vs. Pittsburgh, 9 p.m.
No. 22 Wisconsin vs. N.C. State, 9 p.m.