Friday Sports in Brief
Friday Sports in Brief
By The Associated Press
Saturday, January 5, 2019
PITTSBURGH (AP) — The Pittsburgh Steelers have parted ways with outside linebackers coach Joey Porter.
The team announced Friday that Porter’s contract would not be renewed. The move is the first of what could be several coaching adjustments by the Steelers after Pittsburgh failed to make the playoffs for the first time since 2013.
The 41-year-old Porter, who spent 13 seasons in the NFL before going into coaching, joined the Steelers as a defensive assistant in 2014 and was promoted to outside linebackers coach in 2015. His tenure with the team was marred by an incident in January 2017 when he was arrested following an altercation with a bouncer at a bar. Most of the charges against Porter were later dropped.
West Virginia and Troy’s Neal Brown are completing a deal to make him the next coach of the Mountaineers, two people familiar with the situation told The Associated Press on Friday.
The people spoke to AP on condition of anonymity because the contract was not yet final. Brown would replace Dana Holgorsen, who this week left West Virginia to become Houston’s coach.
Yahoo! Sports first reported West Virginia and Brown were close to a deal.
The 38-year-old Brown has coached Troy since 2015 and is 35-16 at the Sun Belt Conference school. His teams have produced impressive performances against Power Five competition, winning at Nebraska this season and at LSU in 2017. The Trojans also lost 30-24 at Clemson in 2016, the season the Tigers won the national title.
—By AP College Football Writer Ralph D. Russo.
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Quarterback Justin Fields confirmed Friday night he is transferring to Ohio State following one season as Georgia’s backup.
Fields’ much-anticipated announcement gives new Ohio State coach Ryan Day a sublimely talented dual-threat passer to run his offense if Dwayne Haskins Jr. makes an expected jump to the NFL.
Fields decided to transfer from Georgia after he was unable to beat out starter Jake Fromm. Fields announced the transfer after he was expected to visit the Ohio State campus earlier Friday.
NORMAN, Okla. (AP) — Oklahoma has hired Ohio State co-defensive coordinator and safeties coach Alex Grinch as defensive coordinator.
The school made the announcement on Friday.
Grinch spent three years as defensive coordinator and secondary coach at Washington State under Mike Leach from 2015-17 and turned a unit that ranked 99th nationally the season before he arrived into one that ranked 16th overall and ninth in pass defense in 2017.
After that, he spent one season at Ohio State and helped the Buckeyes reach the Rose Bowl. Now, he looks forward to working under Oklahoma coach Lincoln Riley.
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Notre Dame All-America cornerback Julian Love and tight end Alize Mack are forgoing their final seasons of eligibility and entering the NFL draft.
Both players made their announcements Friday on Twitter. Love’s decision was no foregone conclusion and will leave a big hole in the Fighting Irish secondary in 2019.
ATHENS, Ga. (AP) — Georgia’s offense was hit with a four-player exodus of juniors to the NFL on Friday that took away the team’s top three receivers and second-leading rusher.
Tailback Elijah Holyfield, tight end Isaac Nauta and wide receivers Riley Ridley and Mecole Hardman announced Friday they are skipping their senior seasons to enter the NFL draft.
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) — George Welsh, who coached football at Virginia for 19 years and retired as the Atlantic Coast Conference’s career victories leader, has died.
The school made the announcement in a release Friday, saying Welsh’s family says he died peacefully in Charlottesville on Wednesday. He was 85.
Welsh compiled a 134-86-3 record at Virginia from 1982-2000. He was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2004, and the school named its indoor practice facility for him when it was completed in 2013.
PIRAEUS, Greece (AP) — Rick Pitino’s winning streak with Greek club Panathinaikos is over.
After two straight victories in his first European coaching job, Pitino’s team was dealt a 79-65 loss on the road Friday to archrival Olympiakos in a game for the Euroleague, Europe’s premier club competition.
Olympiakos broke open the game late in the first half with a 10-0 run that extended its lead to 36-21. Olympiakos led by as many as 21 points and Panathinaikos could not get closer than 12.
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (AP) — Penn State has suspended basketball coach Patrick Chambers for one game for shoving a player during a timeout Thursday night in a loss at No. 2 Michigan
Midway through the first half in the 68-55 loss, the ESPN broadcast showed footage of a fired-up Chambers in a huddle, reaching out with one arm and pushing freshman guard Myles Dread in the chest.
Penn State athletic director Sandy Barbour announced the suspension Friday. Chambers will miss Nittany Lions’ home game Sunday against Wisconsin.
Chambers said in a statement Friday that he had apologized to the player and his family; he called his actions inappropriate.
LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) — Bob Burrow, a two-time All-American whose per-game average of 17.7 rebounds remains a Kentucky single-season record, has died.
The school made the announcement in a release Friday, saying that Burrow died Thursday in Franklin, Tennessee. He was 84. No cause of death was given by the school or funeral home.
Burrow pulled down 459 rebounds in 26 games during the 1954-55 season. His 34 boards against Temple on Dec. 10, 1955 are tied with Billy Spivey for Kentucky’s single-game mark. His 20.1-point scoring average ranks fourth in school history and his 823 rebounds rank 10th.
BALTIMORE (AP) — The Baltimore Orioles claimed right-handed reliever Austin Brice off waivers from the Los Angeles Angels on Friday.
Brice was designated for assignment by the Angels last week. He appeared in 33 games for Cincinnati last season, going 2-3 with a 5.79 ERA.
The 6-foot-4 Brice started his career in Miami in 2016 and was with the Reds in 2017. Over his career, the 26-year-old is 2-4 with a 5.68 ERA in 70 games.
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Martin Truex Jr. landed Bass Pro Shops as sponsor for 24 races this season with Joe Gibbs Racing.
Bass Pro first partnered with Truex in 2001 and was on his car when he won the 2017 Cup Series championship with Furniture Row Racing. That team folded at the end of November because another sponsor left NASCAR and Furniture Row could not replace the funding.
It made Truex available to move to JGR, and Bass Pro will follow as his primary sponsor.
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Indiana senior defender Andrew Gutman and Stanford sophomore forward Catarina Macario are the winners of the Hermann Trophy as the top college soccer players.
Presented Friday by the Missouri Athletic Club, the Hermann Trophy honors the United Soccer Coaches National Players of the Year in NCAA Division I.
BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — Montana State University’s play-by-play broadcaster for football and men’s basketball has resigned after the university investigated a reporter’s complaint that he sexually harassed her, an allegation that he denies.
Jay Sanderson told The Billings Gazette that he left his position as “the voice of the Bobcats” last month to help an ill family member in Wichita, Kansas. He denies former Missoulian reporter Amie Just’s allegations that he touched her inappropriately and sent her sexually suggestive text messages.
Just granted permission to use her name to The Associated Press, which normally does not name alleged sexual harassment victims.
NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie wants lawmakers across the country to resist a bill that would give the federal government control over regulating sports betting.
The Republican said Friday at a conference of legislators that states have proven they can handle the job. Christie began a court battle against the major pro and college sports leagues that ended with the U.S. Supreme Court clearing the way for all states to choose whether or not to offer sports gambling.
Speaking Friday in New Orleans at the National Council of Legislators from Gaming States conference, Christie also urged lawmakers to resist granting the leagues “integrity fees,” which are essentially a slice of the action on sports bets, and said they should refuse demands to use official league data in sports betting.
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