Weekend Sports in Brief
The San Francisco 49ers said Sunday they plan to release linebacker Reuben Foster after he was arrested at the team hotel in Tampa, Florida, on a domestic violence charge.
An arrest report from the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s office said Foster was booked into jail at 11:11 p.m. Saturday and released Sunday on $2,000 bail. Foster was arrested by Tampa police at 9:10 p.m. at the Grand Hyatt hotel where the team was staying before playing the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Foster will be placed on waivers officially on Monday. The other 31 teams will have an opportunity to claim him, although the NFL could place him on the commissioner’s exempt list if he is signed. Spokesman Brian McCarthy said the league is reviewing the matter.
The 24-year-old Foster was charged with one count of first-degree misdemeanor domestic violence. Tampa Police spokeswoman Janelle McGregor said a woman told police that Foster slapped her phone out of her hand, pushed her in the chest area and slapped her with an open hand on the left side of her face. McGregor said officers observed a 1-inch scratch on the accuser’s left collarbone.
CHICAGO (AP) — Hall of Fame tight end and former Chicago Bears coach Mike Ditka is recovering from a mild heart attack.
Steve Mandell, Ditka’s agent, tells ESPN that doctors inserted a pacemaker. He says Ditka is “doing much better,” and the iconic coach “appreciates the outpouring of support and expects to be home soon.”
The Bears wished Ditka a “speedy recovery” on Twitter.
The 79-year-old Ditka played 12 seasons in the NFL and made the Pro Bowl five times. He finished with 427 receptions for 5,812 yards and 43 touchdowns.
Ditka might be best known for his coaching career. He coached the Bears and the New Orleans Saints, finishing with a 121-95 record in 14 years, and he led Chicago to the Super Bowl title after the 1985 season.
LUBBOCK, Texas (AP) — Kliff Kingsbury has been fired at Texas Tech after the former record-setting Red Raiders quarterback had a losing overall record in his six seasons as their head coach.
Athletic director Kirby Hocutt announced the move in a news release Sunday, a day after the Red Raiders finished their third consecutive losing season with a 35-24 loss to Baylor when they had a chance to get bowl eligible. That was their fifth straight loss after a 5-2 start this year.
Kingsbury finished with a 35-40 record. The Red Raiders were 19-35 in the Big 12 games during that span.
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina says football coach Larry Fedora is out after seven seasons.
The school announced the decision in a news release Sunday morning. That came less than a day after an overtime loss to rival North Carolina State that dropped the Tar Heels to 2-9 and concluded with a brawl between the teams in the end zone.
Fedora’s exit completes a swift fall. The program won 11 games and an Atlantic Coast Conference division championship in 2015. UNC went 5-18 over the past two seasons marred by injuries, inexperienced players and close losses.
The move will cost UNC about $12 million owed on Fedora’s contract that runs through the 2022 season.
Turner’s B/R Live brand is offering a refund to those who experienced technical difficulties during the Phil Mickelson-Tiger Woods pay-per-view match in Las Vegas.
B/R Live said Saturday that it would offer refunds. Charter Spectrum, Cox Communications, Dish/Sling TV and AT&T — via its DirecTV and U-Verse platforms — also announced refunds.
Technical difficulties marred the Friday event, which was billed as golf’s first pay-per-view broadcast.
Some viewers unable to view it on their televisions after paying $19.95. Turner and Bleacher Report representatives sent out links on social media allowing people to view it for free on their computers and mobile devices.
There were over 500 people on hold online waiting for assistance during one point.
REGINA, Saskatchewan (AP) — Former NHL referee Mick McGeough has died at 62.
The NHL said in a statement Saturday that McGeough died Friday night in Regina. A page set up on the Go Fund Me website to support his family said he had a stroke a week ago.
McGeough worked 21 seasons from 1987 through 2008, refereeing 1,083 regular-season games and 63 playoff games. He was one of the last referees to officiate without a helmet. Most recently, he worked as an NHL officiating supervisor
NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman called him “one of the league’s top referees” whose “passion for the game shone through on a nightly basis.”
BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) — The Copa Libertadores final between fierce Argentine rivals Boca Juniors and River Plate was postponed again Sunday in a major embarrassment for South American football, a day after Boca players were injured in an attack by River fans.
The game — the continent’s equivalent of Europe’s Champions League final — had already been put back from Saturday to Sunday after River fans threw stones, sticks and bottles at Boca’s team bus. The attack took place just blocks from the Monumental de Nunez Stadium, adding another chapter to Argentina’s long history of soccer-related violence and increasing security concerns just days before the country hosts a G-20 summit of world leaders.
South American soccer body CONMEBOL said on Sunday that the second leg of the final will be rescheduled, but did not give a date or say whether the venue would be changed. It will meet to discuss the details in its headquarters at the Paraguayan capital of Asuncion on Tuesday.
DUBLIN (AP) — Mick McCarthy has returned for his second stint as Republic of Ireland coach, replacing Martin O’Neill, who left Tuesday after five years in charge.
The Football Association of Ireland said Sunday that McCarthy would stay in charge for two years, and that Stephen Kenny, who was taking immediate charge of the Under-21s team, would succeed him after the 2020 European Championship.
The 59-year-old McCarthy is tasked with leading an uninspiring side to Euro 2020, which includes four games to be hosted in Dublin.
McCarthy led Ireland to qualification for the 2002 World Cup in his first stint in charge between 1996-2002
EDMONTON, Alberta (AP) — Terry Williams helped the Calgary Stampeders end their Grey Cup misery.
Williams had a Grey Cup-record 97-yard punt return for a touchdown and Calgary beat the Ottawa Redblacks 27-16 on Sunday night after falling short the previous two years in the Canadian Football League title game.
Calgary lost 39-33 in overtime to Ottawa in 2016, and dropping a 27-24 decision to Toronto last year.
Bo Levi Mitchell — the CFL’s most outstanding player this season after throwing a league-best 35 TD passes — was the game MVP. He was 14 of 21 passing for 182 yards and two touchdowns, but also had two interceptions.
LILLE, France (AP) — Marin Cilic sealed Croatia’s victory over defending champion France in the Davis Cup final with a 7-6 (3), 6-3, 6-3 win over Lucas Pouille on Sunday.
Cilic, a former U.S. Open champion, gave Croatia a 3-1 unassailable lead in the best-of-five series on indoor clay in northern France with a ruthless display.
Cilic lived up to his status of team leader this weekend, winning his two matches without dropping a set. He was surrounded by the whole Croatian team on the court and covered his shoulders with the Croatian flag after the country’s president, Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic, warmly hugged him.
“It’s not every day that you become a world champion,” Cilic said. “For us, it’s a dream come true, for this nation, we are so passionate, you can see the fans. And I feel that in Croatia it’s going to be incredible too.”
Croatia claimed a second title in the team event following its first win in 2005.
MONACO (AP) — Ireland flyhalf Johnny Sexton was named World Rugby Player of the Year at a glittering ceremony in Monaco on Sunday, leading a sweep of the major awards by an Ireland team which has swept all before it this season.
Coach Joe Schmidt, widely acclaimed as the architect of Ireland’s rise over the last five years to No. 2 on the world rankings, was named Coach of the Year and Ireland was named Team of the Year in recognition of its Six Nations Grand Slam and its historic home win this month over top-ranked New Zealand.