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BC-AP Sports Digest

October 4, 2018

The supervisor is Fred Lief, followed by John Nicholson at 5 p.m. and Bob Lentz at 1 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@ap.org or 877-836-9477. All times EDT.

Miami Heat coach Erik Spoelstra is running a more family-friendly training camp. In the latest episode of “PodcastOne Sports Now,” he speaks with AP Basketball Writer Tim Reynolds about juggling work with fatherhood. Also, AP Baseball Writer Ben Walker breaks down the playoffs. https://www.podcastone.com/ap-sports-weekly-podcast

On the AP Top 25 College Football Podcast, USA Today’s George Schroeder joins AP’s Ralph Russo to preview the big games of Week 6, including No. 19 Texas vs. No. 7 Oklahoma in Dallas. https://www.podcastone.com/AP-Top-25-College-Football-Podcast

TOP STORIES

BBN--NLDS-ROCKIES-BREWERS

MILWAUKEE — The Milwaukee Brewers, with the league’s best record and powered by NL MVP favorite Christian Yelich, play their first postseason game in seven years when they open their Division Series matchup against the Colorado Rockies. By Genaro C. Armas. UPCOMING: 750 words, photos. Game starts 5:07 p.m.

— With:

— BBN--BREWERS-EVEN-KEELED YELICH — Just ask his mother, Yelich has always been steady and calm. By Genaro C. Armas. SENT: 500 words, photos.

— Postgame sidebar by Jay Cohen.

BBN--NLDS-BRAVES-DODGERS

LOS ANGELES — Hyun-Jin Ryu starts for Los Angeles against Mike Foltynewicz and the Braves in the opener of their NL Division Series. Ryu was 7-3 with a 1.97 ERA in 15 starts this season. Waiting for Atlanta in Game 2 is Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw. By Beth Harris. UPCOMING: 750 words, photos. Game starts 8:37 p.m.

— With:

— Postgame sidebar by Joe Reedy.

SOC--RONALDO-SPONSORS

LONDON — Pressure grows on Cristiano Ronaldo from sponsors after Nike joins EA Sports in expressing deep concern over the rape allegation facing the soccer star. The five-time world player of the year denies the accusation. By Global Soccer Writer Rob Harris. SENT: 400 words, photos. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 5 p.m.

— With:

— SOC--RONALDO-NATIONAL TEAM — Ronaldo left off Portugal team for upcoming matches. By Barry Hatton. SENT: 300 words, photos.

OLY--RUSSIAN DOPE-CYBERATTACKS

MOSCOW — With Russia’s top athletes facing doping sanctions, Moscow-based intelligence officers allegedly launched a wave of hacker attacks on some of the sports world’s biggest names and competitions. An indictment lists the Olympics and FIFA as targets. By James Ellingworth and Graham Dunbar. UPCOMING: 900 words, photos by 4 p.m.

FBN--COLTS-PATRIOTS

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — The New England Patriots simply don’t lose to the Indianapolis Colts, particularly at home. The Patriots have won the last seven meetings and haven’t fallen to Indy at Gillette Stadium since 2006. By Pro Football Writer Barry Wilner. UPCOMING: 750 words, photos. Game starts 8:20 p.m.

MMA--MCGREGOR-NUMAGOMEDOV

LAS VEGAS — Conor McGregor and Khabib Nurmagomedov put on one last show before fighting Saturday night for Nurmagomedov’s UFC lightweight title. This is expected to be the UFC’s biggest bout, spurred by McGregor’s return and the bad blood over his attack on a UFC bus in New York. By Tim Dahlberg. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 9 p.m.

SPORTS SHOWCASE

FBC--NEBRASKA’S NADIR

LINCOLN, Neb. — Nebraska was a force in college football from the 1970s through the ’90s. Now the Cornhuskers are 0-4, off to their worst start since 1945. Coaches who faced those powerhouse teams describe the fall as unfathomable. By College Football Writer Eric Olson. SENT: 800 words, photos.

BKN--FAREWELL TO THE KEY

SEATTLE — KeyArena, once the home of the Seattle SuperSonics, hosts its final event Friday night — an NBA exhibition game between Golden State and Sacramento. Then the building will be remodeled and perhaps reopened in two years as home to a new NHL franchise. By Tim Booth. UPCOMING: 750 words, photos by 4 p.m.

BASEBALL

BBA--ALDS--INDIANS-ASTROS-PREVIEW

HOUSTON — Justin Verlander looks to replicate last year’s postseason success when Houston’s ace starts for the World Series champs. He faces Corey Kluber and the AL Central champion Cleveland Indians in Game 1 of the ALDS on Friday. By Kristie Rieken. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 6 p.m.

BBA--ALDS-YANKEES-RED SOX

BOSTON — The Yankees arrive in Boston to renew their rivalry with the Red Sox. The ALDS opener Friday night marks the first playoff meeting between the teams since New York’s epic 2004 collapse. By Jimmy Golen. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 6 p.m. With matchup capsule by 5 p.m.

BBO--WORLD SERIES-POTENTIAL MATCHUPS

Familiar faces in the American League, new blood in the National League. The AL teams were all at this stage last year. The NL welcomes the Braves, Brewers and Rockies — none having played in a Division Series since Atlanta in 2013. By Noah Trister. SENT: 700 words, photos.

NFL

FBN--NFL THIS WEEK

When last they met, the Eagles and Vikings were vying for a spot in the Super Bowl. Now they are searching for consistency while looking up at other division leaders. By Pro Football Writer Barry Wilner. UPCOMING: 1,700 words, to move after Colts-Patriots game Thursday night.

FBN--CHIEFS-KEEPING IT LIGHT

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Receiver Tyreek Hill calls his quarterback slow. Coach Andy Reid calls his quarterback’s voice “froggish.” And Patrick Mahomes insists he can dish the trash talk as well as take it. As the Chiefs keep winning, the banter keeps things light. By Dave Skretta. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 4 p.m.

FBN--CARDINALS-FITZGERALD

TEMPE, Ariz. — Larry Fitzgerald says it’s the victories that keep him playing in the NFL. If that’s true, it must have been a miserable first month to his 15th pro season. By Bob Baum. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos by 8 p.m.

FBN--TEXANS-CLOWNEY

HOUSTON — Jadeveon Clowney pounced on a fumble for a touchdown. On the next drive, he shoved a lineman out of his path and tossed Andrew Luck for loss to force a punt. This is what the Houston Texans envisioned when they drafted him No. 1 in 2014. By Kristie Rieken. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 6 p.m.

— Also:

— FBN--STEELERS-SCUFFLING D — By Will Graves. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos by 6 p.m.

— FBN--BENGALS-BOYD EMERGES — By Joe Kay. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos by 6 p.m.

— FBN--COWBOYS-DOMINANT D-LAW — By Pro Football Writer Schuyler Dixon. UPCOMING: 650 words, photos by 9 p.m.

— FBN--DOLPHINS-DRAKE — By Steven Wine. UPCOMING: 500 words, photos by 5 p.m.

— FBN--SEAHAWKS-REPLACING ET — By Tim Booth. UPCOMING: 550 words, photos by 8 p.m.

— FBN--SAINTS-INGRAM — By Brett Martel. UPCOMING: 650 words, photos by 6 p.m.

— FBN--INSIDE THE NUMBERS — By Pro Football Writer Rob Maaddi. SENT: 450 words, photos.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL

FBN--LSU-DIALED IN

BATON ROUGE, La. — With nearly 600 yards of offense against Ole Miss and first-year quarterback Joe Burrow turning in his best passing performance, No. 5 LSU’s offense looks dialed in. The question is whether such a game carries over on the road against No. 22 Florida. By Brett Martel. UPCOMING: 650 words, photos by 6 p.m.

— With:

— FBC--T25-FLORIDA-TEBOW — By Mark Long. UPCOMING: 500 words, photos by 5 p.m.

FBC--T25-NOTRE DAME-TILLERY’S TRAVELS

SOUTH BEND, Ind. — Jerry Tillery is a gifted student, budding musician and world traveler. He is also one of the nation’s most disruptive defensive linemen. The only trip on his itinerary now is California in January, with No. 6 Notre Dame playing for the national title. SENT: 750 words, photos.

FBC--T25-ALABAMA RECIEVERS

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — No. 1 Alabama has one of the SEC’s most talented collection of receivers, and the Crimson Tide is spreading it around among Jerry Jeudy, Henry Ruggs III, DeVonta Smith and Jaylen Waddle. By John Zenor. UPCOMING: 550 words, photos. Expected by 3 p.m.

— Also:

— FBC--T25-AUBURN-RUNNING GAME — By John Zenor. SENT: 550 words, photos.

— FBC--T25-NC STATE-MOVING THE CHAINS — By Aaron Beard. UPCOMING: 600 words and photos by 4 p.m.

— Conference previews on ACC, SEC, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-12.

NHL

HKN--FLYERS-GETTING GRITTY

PHILADELPHIA — The Flyers mascot Gritty has been loved and lampooned, swept into politics and become the orange face that launched a thousand memes. Gritty has been plastered on beer cans and schmoozed with TV talk show hosts. The voting ends already: The NHL rookie of the year is Gritty. By Dan Gelston. SENT: 900 words, photos.

HKN--KINGS-KOVALCHUK

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. — Ilya Kovalchuk is back in the NHL for the first time since 2013. The Los Angeles Kings are counting on him to put some spark in their offense. The 35-year-old Russian is a former All-Star who has played for Atlanta and New Jersey. By Joe Reedy. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos by 7 p.m.

COLLEGE BASKETBALL

COLLEGE CORRUPTION

NEW YORK — The father of a prized college basketball prospect is set to testify in federal court about how his family was offered money to sign with certain schools, including Louisville. By Tom Hays. UPCOMING: 450 words by 6 p.m.

BKC--ARIZONA-BIG GUARD U

TEMPE, Ariz. — Arizona State made a run to the NCAA Tournament last season behind a group that became known as Guard U. The Sun Devils’ bid for a repeat trip will hinge on a new group that’s being called Big Guard U. By Basketball Writer John Marshall. UPCOMING: 600 words by 6 p.m.

BKW--SOUTH CAROLINA-STALEY

COLUMBIA, S.C. — Less than a week after leading the world’s best women’s players to a World Cup title, U.S. national team coach Dawn Staley returns to her job as South Carolina coach. By Pete Iacobelli. UPCOMING, 600 words by 5 p.m.

— Also:

— BKC--TENNESSEE-EXPECTATIONS — By Steve Megargee. UPCOMING: 600 words by 5 p.m.

GOLF

GLF--SAFEWAY OPEN

NAPA, Calif. — The new PGA Tour season begins with the Safeway Open. Phil Mickelson, whose management company runs the tournament, is the only Ryder Cup player in the field. Fred Couples is making a rare PGA Tour start. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos by 10 p.m.

— Also:

— GLF--INTERNATIONAL CROWN — Mixed start for U.S. women at team event in South Korea. By John Duerden. SENT: 500 words, photos.

— GLF--DUNHILL LINKS — Brooks Koepka highlights start of Dunhill Links Championship in Scotland. UPCOMING: 400 words, photos by 5 p.m.

SOCCER

SOC--MEXICO-US

CARY, N.C. — The U.S. begins its bid to qualify for next year’s Women’s World Cup when it faces Mexico. The Americans, who won the World Cup in 2015, are playing in a CONCACAF group assured three spots for next year’s tournament in France. UPCOMING: 600 words. Game starts 7:30 p.m. With NewsNow on Trinidad/Tobago-Panama (5 p.m.).

— Also:

— SOC--SPAIN SPOTLIGHT-COMPETITIVE LEAGUE — With Real Madrid and Barcelona faltering, Spanish league is wide open. By Tales Azzoni. SENT: 600 words, photos.

— SOC--EUROPA LEAGUE ROUNDUP — Chelsea hosts Hungary’s Vidi in one of 24 second-round games in Europa League. By Karel Janicek. UPCOMING: 500 words, photos by 4 p.m.

AUTO RACING

CAR--F1-JAPANESE GP

Lewis Hamilton has won five of the last six Formula One races. This week, he drives in Suzuka, where three of the last four times he has won the Japanese Grand Prix. With five races to go, his fifth world championship is almost a certainty. By Jim Armstrong. SENT: 350 words, photos.

OTHER

— OMAHA, Neb. — Welterweight champ Terence “Bud” Crawford fights unbeaten Jose Benavidez Jr. on Oct. 13 in Omaha, Neb. By Eric Olson. UPCOMING: 400 words, photos by 6 p.m.

— BKN--PRESEASON RDP — — Roundup of two exhibition games: Pacers-Rockets (8 p.m.), Kings-Lakers (10:30 p.m.) UPCOMING: 500 words by 2 a.m.

— Tennis tournaments in Beijing, Tokyo.

CAPSULES

— HKN--NHL CAPSULES.

___

Thursday’s Time Schedule (EDT)

Baseball (NL Division Series)

Colorado at Milwaukee, 5:07 p.m.

Atlanta at Los Angeles, 8:37 p.m.

NFL

Indianapolis at New England, 8:20 p.m.

NHL

Washington at Pittsburgh, 7 p.m.

Boston at Buffalo, 7 p.m.

N.Y. Islanders at Carolina, 7 p.m.

Columbus at Detroit, 7:30 p.m.

Nashville at N.Y. Rangers, 7:30 p.m.

Chicago at Ottawa, 7:30 p.m.

Winnipeg at St. Louis, 8 p.m.

Arizona at Dallas, 8:30 p.m.

Minnesota at Colorado, 9 p.m.

Philadelphia at Vegas, 10 p.m.

NBA Exhibition

Indiana at Houston, 8 p.m.

Sacramento at L.A. Lakers, 10:30 p.m.

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