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Wednesday’s Sports in Brief

March 22, 2018

COLLEGE BASKETBALL

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The Big East has recommended replacing one-and-done with a two-or-none policy in college basketball, along with NCAA regulation of agents and the creation of an elite player unit to focus on “players with realistic aspirations of playing in the NBA.”

The Big East’s recommendations come a week after a similar report by the Pac-12 for the NCAA’s commission on college basketball, led by former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. The commission was created in response to a federal investigation into corruption in college basketball.

The Big East’s plan calls for the elimination of the NBA’s one-and-done rule, which prohibits its teams from drafting players until they are at least 19 or a year removed from high school.

Two-or-none would be an NCAA policy requiring basketball players who decide to go to college to commit for at least two seasons. Meanwhile, high school players who declare for the NBA draft would forfeit future college eligibility.

PRO FOOTBALL

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (AP) — The NFL’s catch rule would get less complicated if team owners approve recommendations from the powerful competition committee.

One of the first orders of business when the league’s annual meetings begin Monday in Orlando, Florida, will be a proposal by the committee to clarify what is a catch. Commissioner Roger Goodell said during the week of the Super Bowl he would urge simplification of the rules.

“Catch/no catch is at the top of everyone’s minds,” Troy Vincent, the NFL’s football operations chief, said Wednesday before outlining the committee’s recommendations.

The owners will be asked to vote on clarifications that eliminate parts of the rule involving a receiver going to the ground, and that also eliminate negating a catch for slight movement of the ball while it is in the receiver’s possession. No calls in the last few years — not even pass interference — have caused more consternation than overturned catches in key situations, including those by Dez Bryant, Jesse James and Austin Seferian-Jenkins.

“We were at the point as far as players and particularly coaches who asked, ‘Why is that not a catch?’” Vincent said. “We talked to fans, coaches and players and we asked the groups, ‘Would you like this to be a catch?’ It was 100 percent yes.

“Then we began writing rules that actually apply to making these situations catches.”

BASEBALL

COOPERSTOWN, N.Y. (AP) — The baseball Hall of Fame says it no longer will use the Cleveland Indians’ Chief Wahoo logo for plaques of new members.

In a statement, the Hall said Wednesday that it “concurs with the commissioner’s sentiment and acknowledges the shifting societal view of Native American logos in baseball.”

Former Cleveland slugger Jim Thome was elected in January and said he wanted a block C logo on his plaque when it is unveiled in July. Thome said it was “the right thing to do.”

Major League Baseball announced earlier this year the Chief Wahoo logo won’t appear on Cleveland uniforms starting in the 2019 season. The decision came after discussions between Commissioner Rob Manfred and team owner Paul Dolan.

For years, groups of Native Americans and their supporters have protested outside Cleveland’s stadium before the home opener, saying Chief Wahoo is an offensive depiction of their race.

The Hall said that while the Chief Wahoo logo appears on Early Wynn’s 1972 bronze plaque and other exhibits in the museum, it won’t be used on future plaques.

TENNIS

LOS ANGELES (AP) — When Lois Goodman was in court six years ago, she stood accused of murder for allegedly bludgeoning her elderly husband with a coffee mug. On Wednesday, she was the accuser, blaming a medical examiner of falsifying an autopsy report that led to her arrest, tarnished her reputation and left her in financial trouble.

Goodman, a tennis umpire who was on her way to officiate a U.S. Open tennis match in New York in 2012 when police handcuffed her in front of news cameras, wants at least $100,000 for legal expenses and the ordeal she suffered for months before prosecutors dropped the charges.

Attorney Todd Thibodo told jurors in federal court that Deputy Medical Examiner Yulai Wang in the Los Angeles coroner’s office provided no justification when he determined Alan Goodman’s death was a homicide not an accident. Wang had omitted important elements about the death and ignored the office’s rules about including evidence of other possible causes of death in his report, he said.

SOCCER

MANCHESTER, England (AP) — Manchester United has applied to set up a professional women’s team for the first time in the club’s history.

If the English Football Association accepts the request, United would enter its team in the second tier of the Women’s Super League.

Ed Woodward, United’s executive vice-chairman, says the women’s team “must be built in the same image and with the same principles as the men’s first team.”

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