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Archive for Saturday, June 18, 2011

National briefs: Reaching a deal not a done deal for NFL

June 18, 2011

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New York — Reaching a labor deal soon is hardly a done deal in the NFL.

Team owners will be updated on recent negotiations with the players when they meet in Chicago on Tuesday. They’ve been told to prepare to stay an extra day because of the complexity of the proposals both sides have discussed in sessions over the last three weeks.

Getting the required 24 of 32 owners to agree on anything can be difficult, let alone something as complex as a new collective bargaining agreement. And there has been enough pushback from owners familiar with those proposals that progress made recently might not lead to an agreement in the next few weeks.

Still, according to a person with knowledge of the negotiations, the faction of unhappy owners that exists isn’t yet large enough to derail an agreement. That could lead to some heavy lobbying in Chicago at the first owners’ meeting specifically scheduled to deal with the lockout.

The person, speaking on condition of anonymity because details of the negotiations are not supposed to be made public, said a new CBA is not imminent.

NFL

League looking into casino case

Dothan, Ala. — The NFL is investigating the reported investment by at least 25 NFL players in an Alabama casino that has been shut down.

League spokesman Greg Aiello confirmed the investigation Friday, a day after Yahoo! Sports reported that wide receivers Terrell Owens, Santonio Holmes, Santana Moss and other players had invested some $20 million in Country Crossing casino. The report also named defensive tackle Gerard Warren and linebacker Adalius Thomas.

NFL rules bar employees from involvement with any gaming operation. Players violating that rule could be subject to fines or suspensions and have to give up their investment.

College Basketball

Aircraft carrier may host game

San Diego — Organizers say it’s all but certain that the Michigan State-North Carolina basketball game on Veterans Day will be played aboard the USS Carl Vinson, the aircraft carrier that carried Osama bin Laden’s body to a burial at sea.

The Carl Vinson returned from its deployment Wednesday to Coronado, across the bay from downtown San Diego.

Forward transfers to E. Michigan

Ypsilanti, Mich. — Former Arkansas forward Glenn Bryant has transferred to Eastern Michigan.

Eastern Michigan coach Rob Murphy announced the move this week.

Bryant says he wanted to play closer to home after 61 games over two season at Arkansas, where he averaged 3.4 points and 2.7 rebounds.

Bryant is from Detroit, about 40 miles from the Ypsilanti campus.

Former UW guard Overton charged

Seattle — Former Washington backup point guard Venoy Overton was charged Friday in King County Superior Court with promoting prostitution, a felony punishable by up to five years in jail and a $10,000 fine.

Overton is being held in jail on $150,000 bail and will be arraigned June 30, the prosecutor’s office said.

College Football

RB Eskridge leaves Minnesota

Minneapolis — New Minnesota football coach Jerry Kill says leading rusher DeLeon Eskridge is leaving the program because he needs to be closer to home in San Francisco to attend to a family matter.

Eskridge rushed for 698 yards and seven touchdowns last year for the Golden Gophers.

35-game bowl schedule released

Arlington, Texas — College football’s bowl schedule has been released for the 2011-12 season, featuring 35 games over 23 days and ending with the BCS national championship game Jan. 9 in New Orleans.

The Football Bowl Association says the bowl season will open Dec. 17 with three games — the New Mexico Bowl, the Humanitarian Bowl and the New Orleans Bowl.

The traditional bowl date of Jan. 1 will have no games since it falls on a Sunday, when the NFL plays a full schedule of games to close its regular season.

The Rose Bowl is Jan. 2, the Sugar is Jan. 3, the Orange is Jan. 4 and the Fiesta is Jan. 5.

Golf

Perrino, Lee share Saint-Omer lead

Saint-Omer, France — Andrea Perrino and Craig Lee shared a one-shot lead after the second round of the Saint-Omer Open.

Lee had six birdies and three bogeys Friday for a 3-under 68 and 5-under 137 total in windy and wet conditions.

Auto Racing

Probation ends for Busch, Harvick

Brooklyn, Mich. — Probation is over for Kyle Busch and Kevin Harvick, but the drivers aren’t ready to shake hands and make up.

Asked how much the end of the penalty would change his driving, Busch said “zero.”

The two drivers, fined and disciplined for a run-in after the May 7 race at Darlington, were again told to cool it last week at Pocono. Harvick said afterward that he wanted Busch to know he had one coming.

NBA

Rubio to join Timberwolves

Barcelona — Ricky Rubio is making his long-awaited move to the NBA and will join the Minnesota Timberwolves next season.

The highly touted 20-year-old Spanish guard ended two years of speculation Friday, saying “I have finally decided to start the journey” to the NBA.

The Timberwolves chose Rubio with the No. 5 pick in the 2009 draft, but his $6 million buyout clause — of which an NBA team can pay only $500,000 under league rules — made him stay in Spain until it came down to a more manageable $1.4 million.

Owners, players make progress

New York — NBA owners relaxed their insistence on non-guaranteed contracts in a new collective bargaining agreement Friday, but players cautioned that isn’t enough because the league is still seeking a hard salary cap.

Even so, the proposal by the owners during a 41⁄2-hour meeting was perhaps their most significant movement yet as the sides try to agree to a new deal before the current one expires June 30.

“We think it’s significant. Very significant, actually,” Commissioner David Stern said.

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