Jazz great and Hall of Fame coach Jerry Sloan dies
UNDATED (AP) — Jerry Sloan was a tenacious shooting guard before becoming one of the winningest coaches in NBA history.
The Utah Jazz say Sloan died Friday at 78 following complications related to Parkinson’s disease and Lewy body dementia.
Sloan was an All-Star for the Chicago Bulls in 1967 and ’69. An outstanding rebounder at 6-foot-5, he averaged 14 points and 7.4 boards in an 11-year career spent almost exclusively with the Bulls.
But it was his coaching ability that put him in the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2009. Sloan coached the Jazz for 23 seasons, guiding them to the NBA Finals in 1997 and ’98 before losing to Chicago each time. He currently ranks four on the NBA all-time list with 1,221 victories.
Jets get Flacco to back up Darnold
UNDATED (AP) — The New York Jets are giving Joe Flacco a chance to continue his NFL career.
Flacco has signed a one-year deal to serve as Sam Darnold’s backup, giving the Jets a veteran presence under center. Flacco led Baltimore to a Super Bowl victory following the 2012 season and spent 11 years with the Ravens before playing for Denver in 2019.
He started eight games for the Broncos, completing 65.3 percent of his passes for 1,822 yards, six touchdowns and five interceptions before a neck injury caused him to miss the last two months of the season.
Flacco has completed 61.9% of his passes for 40,067 yards, 218 touchdowns and 141 interceptions.
He was waived by Denver in March with a failed physical designation but is expected to be fully recovered in time for training camp in the summer.
In other NFL news:
— The Seahawks have signed running back Carlos Hyde to a one-year package. Hyde is coming off his best NFL season, rushing for 1,070 yards and six touchdowns for the Texans. The six-year veteran has had three seasons of at least 900 yards rushing.
— Packers defensive lineman Montravius Adams was arrested in Georgia this week and charged with marijuana and driving offenses. He was stopped Tuesday on suspicion of driving with a suspended registration and no insurance, according to a Houston County Sheriff’s Office report. It was not immediately clear why police had such suspicions.
NHLPA approve playoff proposal
UNDATED (AP) — The NHL Players’ Association's executive committee authorized moving forward in talks with the league on returning to play from the coronavirus suspension, approving 24 teams making the playoffs with other aspects still to be negotiated
The NHLPA did not provide a breakdown of the vote of its 31 player representatives in making the announcement Friday night, a day after the proposal was presented to the union's executive board. In giving the format the green light, the NHLPA stressed several details still need to be negotiated before games can begin.
Under the plan proposed by the NHL/NHLPA Return To Play committee, the top four teams in each conference would play each other in a mini-tournament for seeding. The remaining 16 teams face off in a best-of-five series play-in round to set the final 16 to compete for the Stanley Cup.
The proposal will now go to the NHL board of governors, which is expected to approve the plan in the next few days. Once approved, the proposal effectively ends the season of the league’s bottom seven teams.
Items still unresolved include potential game locations, when players can return to their respective teams and what non-playoff teams will be allowed to do during what could potentially become a 10-month break between games. While NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly said the league has a plan in place, he stopped short of providing details by saying it would be premature to do so at this time.
Hall of Famer Ewing treated for COVD-19
UNDATED (AP) — Georgetown basketball coach Patrick Ewing has tested positive for COVID-19 and is being treated at a hospital.
The Hall of Fame player and former Knicks center says the virus is serious and should not be taken lightly, adding that he wanted to encourage everyone to stay safe and take care of themselves and their loved ones. Ewing also thanked the healthcare workers and everyone on the front lines
The school said the 57-year-old Ewing is the only member of its men’s program who has contracted the coronavirus.
In other developments related to the coronavirus pandemic:
—The Southeastern Conference is allowing voluntary athletic activities to occur on each of its campuses starting June 8, at the discretion of each university. SEC officials noted the workouts would take place “under strict supervision of designated university personnel and safety guidelines developed by each institution.” The SEC had suspended all athletic activities through May 31 due to the pandemic. College football national champion LSU announced it will resume voluntary workouts for players on June 8 in accordance with the decision.
— The Arizona Diamondbacks have started individual workouts as baseball begins a measured return to play from the coronavirus pandemic. A small number of players worked out at Chase Field in downtown Phoenix and Salt River Fields, their spring training facility about 20 miles away in Scottsdale. The players were separated as much as possible to follow league-mandated guidelines, and the workouts were cleared by Major League Baseball.
—Texas Gov. Greg Abbott says he thinks college football will return on schedule with some level of fans in the stands. Abbott has already issued new rules to allow youth sports leagues to resume in June and for some professional leagues to hold events without spectators. But the state rules have so far not touched college sports.
— The Big Sky Conference will reduce conference schedules in men’s and women’s basketball from 20 to 16 games. The decision by the conference’s President’s Council will be a one-year adjustment to help members cut expenses during the pandemic and have more flexibility in nonconference scheduling.
— Alabama-Huntsville is dropping men’s hockey and men’s and women’s tennis as part of budget cuts in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Men’s hockey had been the lone Division I sport for Alabama-Huntsville.
—A group of Power Five baseball coaches led by Michigan’s Erik Bakich is proposing a later start to the 2022 season. Under the proposal, there would be nine weeks of preseason practice instead of five, the regular season would run from the third week of March to the third week of June and the College World Series would wrap up the last week of July.
—The Pittsburgh Steelers are holding back a portion of their ticket inventory for the 2020 season to be ready in case social distancing measures are required in stadiums this fall. Individual single game tickets went on sale Friday. Team spokesman Burt Lauten says the club withheld 50% of the allotment as a “proactive” measure should the NFL use social distancing guidelines.
— Watford manager Nigel Pearson says two more of his players are in self-isolation after family members tested positive for the coronavirus. The unnamed pair join Watford defender Adrian Mariappa and two staff who went into isolation this week after they tested positive in the English Premier League’s first round of testing. Pearson said the team's two new cases came from people they had contact with testing positive for COVID-19, even though the players' own tests were negative.
— Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez announced Saturday that the soccer league in Spain will be allowed to resume June 8. It is unclear when the first games will be held. The top tier, La Liga, has said it wants to resume play on June 12. There has been no play in the top tier due to the coronavirus crisis since March 12. Teams have recently returned to training at club facilities, but with players practicing individually. Barcelona is top of the league with a two-point lead over Real Madrid after 27 of 38 rounds.
— The World of Outlaws raced in front of live fans for the first time in months at a Sprint Car event in Peavley, Missouri. The Outlaws returned last week in Iowa at Knoxville Raceway for a race run without fans. On Friday night at Federated Auto Parts I-55 Raceway, Brad Sweet edged brother-in-law Kyle Larson -- back in his beloved dirt cars after losing his Cup ride for using a racial slur during an online race -- by 0.189 seconds in the 30-lap feature. In qualifying, Larson became the first Sprint Car driver to break the 10-second barrier at the one-third mile, high-banked oval, turning a lap in 9.995 seconds. The series will complete the doubleheader Saturday night.
Star college football recruit charged with attempted murder
ACCOKEEK, Md. (AP) — A high school football player designated as a star recruit for colleges by ESPN is accused of trying to kill his ex-girlfriend's boyfriend.
Luke Hill faces charges including attempted first-degree murder after allegedly firing gunshots that struck a home in Accokeek, Maryland, on Monday night. That’s according to charging documents obtained by The Washington Post.
Hill is a defensive back who graduated from St. Frances Academy in Baltimore after withdrawing from St. John’s College High during his junior year. He had committed to play at the University of Oregon, but Coach Mario Cristobal told The Oregonian that he was cut from their program this spring.
COLLEGE FOOTBALL-ARKANSAS STATE-COACH
Anderson gets restructured extension
JONESBORO, Ark. (AP) — Arkansas State football coach Blake Anderson has received a restructured contract extension that runs through 2023.
Anderson took the job before the start of the 2014 season. He has led the Red Wolves to a pair of Sun Belt Conference titles and six consecutive bowl appearances. He is one of just two active Group of Five head coaches to lead their programs to at least two conference championships and six bowl games since 2014.
Marquette’s Bailey entering NBA draft
MILWAUKEE (AP) — Marquette forward Brendan Bailey is bypassing his final two seasons of eligibility to pursue a pro career.
The son of former NBA player Thurl Bailey had entered his name into consideration for the NBA draft in April but still had the option of returning to school. Bailey and Marquette coach Steve Wojciechowski announced Friday that Bailey was indeed moving forward with his pro career.
The 6-foot-8 forward averaged 7.1 points, 5.2 rebounds and 25.3 minutes this past season, starting each of Marquette’s 30 games as the Golden Eagles went 18-12.
COLLEGE ADMISSIONS BRIBERY
Loughlin, Giannulli plead in college scam, but fate is hazy
UNDATED (AP) — “Full House” star Lori Loughlin and her fashion designer husband, Mossimo Giannulli, have pleaded guilty to paying half a million dollars to get their two daughters into the University of Southern California as part of a college admissions bribery scheme.
Under their proposed deals, Loughlin hopes to spend two months in prison and Giannulli is seeking to serve five months. But the judge said he will decide whether to accept the deals after considering the presentencing report, a document that contains background on defendants and helps guide sentencing decisions.
Forbes slides Osaka past Serena has highest-paid female athlete
UNDATED (AP) — Naomi Osaka has unseated fellow tennis star Serena Williams at the bank.
Forbes.com says Osaka is the top-earning female athlete, ending Williams’ four-year run atop the list. Forbes says the 22-year-old Osaka earned $37.4 million over the past 12 months from endorsements and prize money, eclipsing Williams in that span.
Forbes said Osaka’s total is a one-year record for a female athlete, topping the previous mark of 29.7 million set by Maria Sharapova in 2015.
Osaka is No. 29 overall, with Williams at No. 33, on Forbes’ annual list of the 100 top-earning athletes.