Sports briefs: April 30

April 30, 2013 

College football

Obama meets boy who won hearts in Nebraska spring game

The 7-year-old cancer patient who became an Internet sensation for his touchdown run in Nebraska's spring football game has yet another fan — President Barack Obama.

Jack Hoffman, his family and former Cornhuskers running back Rex Burkhead visited Obama for 15 minutes in the Oval Office on Monday. Obama presented Jack with a new football and told him he was proud of him.

"I thought it was awesome," Jack said.

Burkhead, who was drafted by the Cincinnati Bengals on Saturday, befriended Jack shortly after the boy was diagnosed with brain cancer in 2011. Their friendship led to the "Team Jack" campaign that has raised awareness and funds for research.

Jack has been a familiar face to Huskers fans who have rallied around the "Team Jack" campaign and saw him help lead the team's traditional Tunnel Walk before last September's game against Wisconsin.

The rest of the nation got to know Jack from the April 6 spring game, after the coaching staff invited Jack to run a play in the fourth quarter. Wearing a miniature Burkhead uniform, he took a handoff from Taylor Martinez and scooted 69 yards to the end zone.

Players on both sidelines poured onto the field, followed him across the goal line and mobbed him, lifting him on their shoulders to the delight of the crowd of 60,000. ESPN and national news networks showed video of Jack's TD run for several days, and it received almost 8 million views on YouTube.

• LSU has indefinitely suspended its leading running back, Jeremy Hill, following his weekend arrest in connection with an alleged bar fight near the campus.

Hill was already on probation after he pleaded guilty in January 2012 to misdemeanor carnal knowledge of a juvenile. Following the early Saturday incident, he was charged with simple battery, also a misdemeanor.

LSU coach Les Miles announced the suspension Monday in a brief emailed news release. He said he would let the case "play out through the legal system" before commenting further.

The 20-year-old Hill, was LSU's leading rusher with 755 yards and 12 touchdowns in 2012, his freshman season.


UK sports Softball's Nunley earns SEC accolades

After impressive performances over Louisville and Missouri where she posted wins in the circle in both starts, Kentucky freshman pitcher Kelsey Nunley was named Southeastern Conference Freshman of the Week, the league office announced Monday afternoon.

This is the second SEC weekly honor of the season for Nunley, who was named SEC Pitcher of the Week on April 15, becoming the first freshman in school history to earn such honors.

Nunley's week started with a complete-game effort against Louisville, allowing only one run on seven hits with three strikeouts. The win snapped the Cardinals' 15-game winning streak. In her start against Missouri, she threw her 17th complete game of the year and allowed one earned run on six hits with four strikeouts.

Overall this season, Nunley is 22-7 with a 2.02 ERA and 159 strikeouts. The rookie is the lone Wildcat in school history to win 20-plus games in a single season.


Running sports

Atlanta mayor vows increased security for annual 10K road race

Officials in Atlanta and organizers of an annual road race that draws 60,000 runners to the city say they will be taking enhanced security measures in the wake of the April 15 Boston marathon bombings.

Mayor Kasim Reed said Monday that details are still being worked out but participants and spectators at the very least can expect to see more police officers at the AJC Peachtree Road Race on July 4. Reed says authorities also will be taking measures behind the scenes, using every city resource to ensure public safety.

The 10K race is in its 44th year.


College basketball

Scheyer returns to Duke as coach

Duke is bringing back former basketball player Jon Scheyer as a special assistant. Coach Mike Krzyzewski announced Scheyer's hiring Monday.

Scheyer was a captain on the Blue Devils' last national championship team in 2010.

Krzyzewski calls Scheyer "one of the greatest young men to ever wear the Duke uniform."

This marks Scheyer's first coaching position. He played in the NBADL and overseas after concluding his Duke career.


Minor-league baseball Legends fall to GreenJackets

Matt Duffy's single drove in Jesus Galindo with the tie-breaking run in the top of the eighth inning, and the Augusta GreenJackets went on to a 4-2 victory over the Lexington Legends at Whitaker Bank Ballpark on Monday afternoon. Duffy also had a solo home run in the third inning, and Bubba Starling hit a two-run shot in the fifth.


The last word

NBA center Jason Collins knows his physical playstyle defies the common stereotype surrounding gay men. He isn't sure how other players will react to his revelation that he's homosexual, but he's willing to chat with them about it — as long as they keep at least a bit of an open mind. Said Collins in his piece for Sports Illustrated:

"Openness may not completely disarm prejudice, but it's a good place to start. It all comes down to education. I'll sit down with any player who's uneasy about my coming out. Still, if I'm up against an intolerant player, I'll set a pretty hard pick on him. And then move on."

Lexington Herald-Leader is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service