Sports briefs: Oct. 22

October 22, 2013 

Football

Grambling team has no regrets over boycott

Naquan Smith and his Grambling football teammates have no regrets about a nearly weeklong boycott that forced the university to forfeit its game against Jackson State on Saturday.

Grambling players stood behind Smith Monday during a press conference outside of the Eddie Robinson Museum on campus. Smith said the entire team was present and that the vote to return to the field was "100 percent."

Smith said players decided end the boycott after reaching out to several Grambling greats, including former coach Doug Williams, who advised them to, "Go out there and play football." Williams also put them in contact with Baton Rouge businessman Jim Bernhard.

Smith said Bernhard told players he has their "best intentions at heart and that he would ensure we had updated facilities, but we had to agree to being back practicing Monday ... and finish the remainder of our season."


NBA

Orton has 10 rebounds in Sixers' loss

Cavaliers 104, 76ers 93: Kyrie Irving had 17 points and 12 assists to spoil the homecoming for Evan Turner as Cleveland beat Philadelphia on Monday night in an exhibition game played at Value City Arena on the Ohio State campus.

Turner, who had 14 points, was the national player of the year for the Buckeyes as a junior in 2010 before deciding to enter the NBA Draft, where he was the second overall selection.

Ex-Cat Daniel Orton had 2 points and 10 rebounds in 21 minutes on the court for the Sixers.

• Oklahoma City center Hasheem Thabeet has been suspended one game without pay by the NBA for head-butting the Pelicans' Greg Stiemsma during the Thunder's 105-102 loss on Thursday.

• Denver guard Nate Robinson has been fined $10,000 for pushing Oklahoma City's Steven Adams from behind and striking him in the chest during a pre-season game. Robinson was penalized Monday for his actions that occurred with 10:59 left in the fourth quarter of the Nuggets' 109-81 loss on Tuesday.

• The Cavaliers are retiring the jersey of former center Zydrunas Ilgauskas, the team's career leader in games and rebounds.


College athletics

Miami awaits NCAA's findings

Decision day has finally arrived for Miami.

The NCAA will unveil the findings of its long investigation into Miami athletics and release any proposed sanctions on Tuesday, about 2½ years after the probe began and more than eight months after saying the Hurricanes did not "exercise institutional control" over former booster and convicted felon Nevin Shapiro's interactions with the football and men's basketball programs.

The report will be released at 10 a.m., the NCAA said. If the case follows typical protocols, the Hurricanes will not receive their copy of the decision until Tuesday morning, shortly before the public release.

Miami is off to a 6-0 start, and the school's No. 7 ranking matches its highest since 2005. The decision will answer whether the football program, by sitting out two bowl games, last season's Atlantic Coast Conference title game and making reductions in recruiting, has already paid enough of a price for the wrongdoing.

"Shapiro alleged that he spent millions between 2002 and 2010 on football and men's basketball recruits, athletes and coaches. A study of the allegations by The Associated Press found the NCAA was able to identify about $173,330 in extra benefits — more than half of that, investigators said, going to former Hurricane players Vince Wilfork and Antrel Rolle.


Sports in the courts Hernandez judge won't recuse self

The judge in the Aaron Hernandez murder case on Monday rejected prosecutors' request to step aside because of what they called bias in an earlier case, saying she was free of it then, is free of it now and will be guided in her rulings only by the law.

Judge Susan Garsh heard 45 minutes of arguments in Fall River Superior Court from prosecutors and a defense attorney for the former New England Patriots tight end before issuing her ruling from the bench.

Garsh said she had "examined my emotions and consulted my conscience" and that she's satisfied she will oversee the trial free from prejudice.

Hernandez has pleaded not guilty to murder in the killing of Odin Lloyd, a 27-year-old semi-pro football player who was dating the sister of his girlfriend.

The prosecution earlier this month asked that Garsh step aside, citing a "well-known and publicly documented history of antagonism" between her and lead prosecutor William McCauley stemming from a 2010 murder trial he argued before her.

• A judge has scheduled a preliminary hearing for an Oklahoma junior high baseball coach accused of throwing baseballs at players as punishment. The hearing was set for Dec. 18 for Roy Martin West, who was charged last month with seven counts of injury to a minor child. West is a baseball coach at Silo Junior High School, but court records show he is not coaching while the criminal case is pending. According to the Durant Daily Democrat, authorities accuse West of hurling baseballs at seventh- and eighth-grade students in April. An affidavit says several students had bruises on their arms and legs as a result.


The last word

Titans owner Bud Adams died Monday. He was 90. Said Phil Bredesen, former Nashville mayor and Tennessee governor who negotiated the Oilers' relocation with Adams:

"He could have just eased through life. A lot of people do that, and he didn't. He went out and lived it. He did things the way he wanted to, and sometimes we'd all wring our hands when he said what he wanted to. And I admire him for it. Probably most of us should do a little more of that."

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