BC-AP Sports Digest
The supervisor is Bob Lentz, followed by Rebecca Miller at 9 a.m. The New York sports desk can be reached at 800-845-8450, ext. 1630. Sports photos, ext. 1918; graphics, ext. 7636; agate, ext. 1635. For up-to-the-minute information on AP’s coverage, visit Coverage Plan at https://newsroom.ap.org For access to AP Newsroom and other technical issues, contact AP Customer Support at apcustomersupport(at)ap.org or 877-836-9477. All times EST.
AP Sports runs a weekly podcast looking at big moments and issues in sports. The podcast is sent every Tuesday, hosted by columnist Jim Litke. Guests include journalists, athletes and other newsmakers. Listen at podcastonesports.com, the podcastone app and apple podcasts.
The United States is sending a pair of teams to a European snow volleyball tour event in Moscow this week, a boost for the sport as it tries to grow a worldwide footprint. Four-time Olympian Lloy Ball, who won the gold medal with the U.S. indoor team in 2008, will play in the tournament and hopes to bring home some information on how the Americans can compete as the new discipline tries to earn a spot in the 2026 Olympics. If it does, volleyball would be the first sport to be a part of both the Summer and Winter Games. By Jimmy Golen. UPCOMING: 980 words, photos by 4 a.m.
NEW YORK — The Los Angeles Chargers placed seven players in the Pro Bowl, including safety Derwin James, one of six rookies across the league to make the game. SENT: 600 words, photos.
FBC--RECRUITING-EARLY SIGNING PERIOD
The vast majority of football prospects last year capitalized on an early signing period to settle on their college choices in December. This year, teams have adjusted to a new normal in which the traditional February signing day gets pushed to the background. By Steve Megargee. SENT: 800 words, photos.
— FBC--SIGNING DAY — By Football Writer Ralph D. Russo. UPCOMING: 150 words, photos. Will be updated throughout the day.
NEW YORK — LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers were rallying, trying to send themselves home on a winning note. The hottest team in the NBA wouldn’t allow it. The Brooklyn Nets ran their longest winning streak in nearly four years to six games with a 115-110 victory Tuesday night, emphatically stopping James on his first shot and then holding him off down the stretch. By Basketball Writer Brian Mahoney. SENT: 790 words, photos.
HKN--AROUND THE NHL
Emphasis on re-signing younger players to lucrative deal is placing a burden on NHL teams in managing the salary cap. The question becomes how teams retain their young stars while keeping enough money aside to fill the remainder of their roster. By Hockey Writer John Wawrow. UPCOMING: 1,100 words, photos by 4 a.m.
GLF--ON THE FRINGE-JASON-DAY
Jason Day wants to get back to No. 1 in the world, and he’s willing to lose sleep over it. He first reached the top ranking in 2015. Now he has three kids and he knows the return to the summit might be even tougher. By Golf Writer Doug Ferguson. SENT: 800 words, photos.
— GLF--GOLF NOTES — By Doug Ferguson. SENT: 1,300 words, photos.
SOC--ON SOCCER-MAN UNITED-MOURINHO
LONDON — Jose Mourinho’s firing leaves Manchester United searching for its fourth manager in the five years since Alex Ferguson retired. The problems run far deeper than a coach’s command of the squad. Team executives seem incapable of making the right calls on big decisions. By Global Soccer Writer Rob Harris. SENT: 850 words, photos.
— SOC--JOHN LEICESTER-MOURINHO’S END — By Sports Columnist John Leicester. SENT: 700 words, photos.
INDIANAPOLIS —Suddenly, the Indianapolis Colts are creating a buzz around town. Earning victories in their last two games could send the Colts back to the playoffs for the first time in four years and they could be a difficult matchup in the postseason, if they make it. By Michael Marot. SENT: 850 words, photos.
RAY RICE-DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
NEW YORK — Ray Rice says he’s not speaking out against domestic violence as a way to rejoin the NFL. The former Baltimore Ravens running back, appearing on “CBS This Morning” with his wife, says he sees similarities between himself and Kareem Hunt, who was released after video showed him shoving and kicking a woman. SENT: 500 words, photos.
— FBN--TITANS-MARIOTA — By Pro Football Writer Teresa M. Walker. SENT: 660 words, photos.
— FBN--POWER RANKINGS — By Simmi Buttar. SENT: 570 words, photos.
FBC--CFP-NOTRE DAME-PREPARING FOR TIGERS
SOUTH BEND, Ind. — Notre Dame’s offensive line is preparing for its biggest challenge of the season. The Fighting Irish will face Clemson in a playoff semifinal at the Cotton Bowl on Dec. 29. The Tigers have one of the best defensive lines in the country and the No. 2 defense overall. By John Fineran. UPCOMING: 800 words, photos by 4 a.m.
— FBC--CFP-OKLAHOMA-RILEY’S WORLD — By Cliff Brunt. SENT: 900 words, photos.
FBC--COMEBACK PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Kent State receiver Antwan Dixon, Dartmouth defensive lineman Seth Simmer and Carson-Newman running back Antonio Wimbush win the Mayo Clinic college football Comeback Player of the Year Award. The new award recognizes college football players from all divisions who overcome injury, illness or other challenges. By College Football Writer Ralph D. Russo. SENT: 650 words, photos.
FBC--BOCA RATON BOWL
BOCA RATON, Fla. — Two seasons after shutting down its football program, UAB closed out the year on an electrifying note. Tyler Johnston III threw for 373 yards and four touchdowns, three of them to Xavier Ubosi, and UAB beat Northern Illinois 37-13 in the Boca Raton Bowl on Tuesday night. SENT: 760 words, photos.
— FBC--FRISCO BOWL PREVIEW CAPSULE — SENT: 350 words, photos.
SYRACUSE, N.Y. —All Buffalo coach Nate Oats had to do was pull out the tape from last year’s game at Syracuse. His rising Bulls did the rest. CJ Massinburg scored 25 points, Jeremy Harris added 18, and No. 14 Buffalo rallied past the Orange 71-59 on Tuesday night to remain unbeaten. It was the first win over the Orange since January 1963 for Buffalo (11-0), one of only nine undefeated teams of the 353 that play in Division I. By John Kekis. SENT: 900 words, photos.
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Stanford has beaten two previously undefeated top-10 teams in four days and still believes it has room to improve. DiJonai Carrington scored a career-high 33 points and pulled down 13 rebounds Tuesday as No. 8 Stanford defeated No. 9 Tennessee 95-85, handing the Lady Volunteers their first loss of the season. By Steve Megargee. SENT: 850 words, photos.
EUGENE, Ore. —Oregon coach Kelly Graves chided guard Sabrina Ionescu following No. 7 Oregon’s win over No. 4 Mississippi State as she rested her head in her hand while addressing the media. She’d certainly earned a breather. Ionescu scored 29 points, including all 17 of her free throws, as the Ducks handed the Bulldogs their first loss this season 82-74 on Tuesday night. By Anne M. Peterson. SENT: 940 words, photos.
INDIANAPOLIS —Larry Nance Jr. put himself in perfect position to make the final play Tuesday night. After outwrestling Victor Oladipo in front of the basket, the Cleveland Cavaliers center waited patiently as he anticipated Rodney Hood’s errant layup then threw up his right hand and barely beat the buzzer. By Michael Marot. SENT: 740 words, photos.
PHILADELPHIA —Carter Hart had a night he’ll never forget, and the rest of the Philadelphia Flyers had a night they really needed. Hart made 22 saves in his NHL debut and Shayne Gostisbehere and James van Riemsdyk each had a goal and an assist as Philadelphia defeated the Detroit Red Wings 3-2 on Tuesday night and made interim coach Scott Gordon a winner in his first game. SENT: 790 words, photos.
DETROIT — Jordy Mercer was struck by how quickly the Detroit Tigers pursued him as a free agent shortstop. Mercer is one of three players the rebuilding Tigers have already added this offseason. By Baseball Writer Noah Trister. UPCOMING: 600 words by 4 a.m.
NEW YORK —Wilson Ramos had a grip on the New York Mets from the moment he walked into their winter meetings suite in Las Vegas last week. By Baseball Writer Ronald Blum. SENT: 790 words, photos.
— BBN--NATIONALS-ADAMS — By Stephen Whyno. SENT: 440 words, photos.
— BBA--ANGELS-HARVEY — By Baseball Writer Ronald Blum. SENT: 600 words, photos.
— BBA--RANGERS-LYNN — By Stephen Hawkins. SENT: 670 words, photos.
— BBA--TWINS-MAUER — By Dave Campbell. SENT: 660 words, photos.
SALT LAKE-OLYMPIC REBOOT
SALT LAKE CITY — Two decades ago, Salt Lake City got caught in a fierce bidding war and bribery scandal that nearly derailed plans for the 2002 Winter Olympics. Now the script has flipped. The IOC is struggling to find cities willing to take on the burden of host. That’s why Utah is in the running for 2030. By Brady McCombs. SENT: 800 words, photos.
SELVA DI VAL GARDENA, Italy — Ilka Stuhec wins a World Cup downhill for her first victory since missing all of last season, including the Pyeongchang Olympics, with a knee injury. This is the first time the Saslong course is hosting women’s World Cup races. By Andrew Dampf. SENT: 650 words, photos.
— SKI--WCUP-LEDECKA’S SCHEDULE — By Andrew Dampf. SENT: 350 words, photos.
— SKI--VILETTA RETIRES — SENT: 130 words, photos.
— SOC--CLUB WORLD CUP — SENT: 350 words, photos.
— SOC--MESSI-GOLDEN SHOW — By Joseph Wilson. SENT: 200 words, photos.
— SOC--MLS-GALAXY-IBRAHIMOVIC — SENT: 390 words, photos.
— SOC--US MALE PLAYER-STEFFEN — SENT: 250 words.
— SOC--ENGLISH ROUNDUP — By Steve Douglas. SENT: 490 words, photos.
— SOC--FIFA INVESTIGATION-GAMBIA — SENT: 140 words
— BKL--WINGS-AGLER — By Stephen Hawkins. SENT: 610 words, photos.
— BKN--NBA CAPSULES
— HKN--NHL CAPSULES
— BKC--T25-TOP 25 CAPSULES
— BKW--T25-TOP 25 CAPSULES
Wednesday Time Schedule (EST)
Cleveland at Charlotte, 7 p.m.
New York at Philadelphia, 7 p.m.
San Antonio at Orlando, 7 p.m.
Indiana at Toronto, 7:30 p.m.
Phoenix at Boston, 7:30 p.m.
Brooklyn at Chicago, 8 p.m.
Detroit at Minnesota, 8 p.m.
New Orleans at Milwaukee, 8 p.m.
Washington at Houston, 8 p.m.
Golden State at Utah, 9 p.m.
Memphis at Portland, 10 p.m.
Oklahoma City at Sacramento, 10 p.m.
Pittsburgh at Washington, 8 p.m.
Montreal at Colorado, 8:30 p.m.
Frisco (Texas) Bowl: San Diego State vs. Ohio, 8 p.m.
COLLEGE BASKETBALL (Top 25)
No. 3 Tennessee vs. Samford, 7 p.m.
No. 5 Virginia at South Carolina, 7 p.m.
No. 7 Auburn at N.C. State, 6 p.m.
No. 11 Florida State vs. North Florida, 7 p.m.
No. 13 Virginia Tech vs. N.C. A&T, 7 p.m.
No. 17 Mississippi State vs. Wofford, 8 p.m.
No. 22 Indiana vs. Central Arkansas, 7 p.m.
No. 1 UConn at Oklahoma, 8:30 p.m.
No. 2 Notre Dame vs. Western Kentucky, 7 p.m.
No. 23 Texas A&M vs. Southern Cal, 6 p.m.