Sports briefs: Nov. 20

November 20, 2013 

400-Pound Running Back

Two Lake Roosevelt players tried to tackle Tony Picard. It usually takes a few more to bring down the 400-pounder.

ANDY SAWYER — ASSOCIATED PRESS

High School Sports

400-pound running back makes foes pay for tackling him

A tiny Washington high school is home to perhaps the largest running back anywhere in the country — amateur or professional.

At 400 pounds, Tony Picard racked up 576 yards rushing and seven touchdowns this year at White Swan High School. Many NFL running backs weigh half as much as Picard, who averaged nearly 6 yards per carry. Video of the 6-foot-4 player's runs has drawn more than 2 million views on YouTube. The 17-year-old plows through defenders while showing agility. Picard hopes to play college football.

"You'll see the other team just kind of looking at him when they're shaking hands, like, 'Oh my gosh, do I really have to tackle this guy?'" Picard's coach, Andy Bush, said.

"It takes multiple guys to take me down, four or five," Picard said. "I kind of take advantage of being this size."


NBA

Jones stars in Rockets' rout of Celtics

Terrence Jones scored a career-high 24 points with nine rebounds and two blocks as the host Houston Rockets beat the Boston Celtics 109-85. The ex-Cat finished 10-for-12 from the field.

   John Wall scored 14 points and tied his career high with 16 assists and the host Washington Wizards beat the Minnesota Timberwolves 104-100 to snap a four-game losing streak.

NFL

Browns, Cleveland OK stadium makeover

The Browns and the city of Cleveland reached a tentative agreement to fund a two-year, $120 million makeover of FirstEnergy Stadium. The deal calls for the team to finance the entire cost for the renovation while recouping $42 million from the city.

"Funding these renovations will protect and enhance the investments we have made in the stadium over the years and will strengthen Cleveland's reputation as a destination city," Mayor Frank Jackson said.

  Former NFL linebacker Frank Chamberlin died Sunday after a year-long battle with brain cancer. He was 35. Chamberlin, who was selected by the Tennessee Titans in the fifth round of the 2000 draft after attending Boston College, played in 43 games for the Titans (2000-02). He also played for the Cincinnati Bengals ('03) and Houston Texans ('05).

  A football fan who fell from the top deck of the Buffalo Bills' stadium into the stands below has lost his job in advertising and public relations at a Buffalo, N.Y., firm. Also, the Bills have banned him from the stadium. Erie County sheriff's officials say he could face charges. Hopkins was seen on video sliding in a seated position down a railing during Sunday's game and then toppling backward and falling about 30 feet. Authorities say he landed on another fan. Both men were taken to a hospital and later released.

  The Carolina Panthers outlasted the Patriots 24-20 Monday night after the officials picked up a penalty flag on a throw in the end zone from New England's Tom Brady to Rob Gronkowski. Panthers linebacker Luke Kuechly, with his back to the ball, appeared to hold Gronkowski while the ball was in the air. Officials said after the game the throw was deemed uncatchable.


Skiing

Vonn crashes again; prognosis uncertain

Reigning Olympic downhill champion Lindsey Vonn crashed Tuesday while training in Copper Mountain, Colo., ahead of her planned return to racing following major knee surgery.

U.S. Ski Team spokesman Tom Kelly said he was not sure whether Vonn hurt her surgically repaired right knee. "We have no reason to believe it's anything significant right now," Kelly said.

A spokesman for Vonn, Lewis Kay, said the skier was not admitted to a hospital and instead went home to Vail to be evaluated by the doctor who performed her knee surgery. "We expect to have clarity on the situation in the next 24 hours," Kay said. Vonn tore ligaments in her right knee in an accident at the world championships in February. She has been aiming to return to World Cup competition next week in Beaver Creek, Colo. The Sochi Games are in February.


Baseball

Hudson completes deal with Giants

Tim Hudson finalized a $23 million, two-year contract with the San Francisco Giants on Tuesday, returning the pitcher to his professional baseball roots. He began his big-league career with Oakland in 1999. Hudson went 92-39 in six seasons with Oakland. Now 38, Hudson went 8-7 with a 3.97 ERA in 21 starts this season for Atlanta. His season was cut short by a broken right ankle that required surgery. The Braves declined to make a qualifying offer to Hudson, who won 49 games during the previous three seasons.

  LaTroy Hawkins, who saved 13 games for the Mets in 2013, agreed Monday to a one-year, $2.5 million deal to be the Rockies closer next season. Hawkins will be 41 next month.


Sports in the courts

ACC's suit over Terps' exit to proceed

The North Carolina Court of Appeals is allowing a lawsuit to proceed in which the Atlantic Coast Conference seeks to compel the University of Maryland to pay a $52 million exit fee for leaving the conference next year.

Maryland had argued that there was no authority for a court in another state to permit the suit to continue.

But the ACC, which is based in North Carolina, countered that Maryland was bound by the equivalent of a contract — the ACC constitution. After the ACC filed suit, Maryland filed its own case in Prince George's County alleging that the exit fee is anti-competitive and should not be enforced. That suit was stayed pending the outcome of the North Carolina case.


The last word

A referee failed to allow a goal Tuesday for the United States when Geoff Cameron's header deflected off an arm of Marko Arnautovic and appeared to cross the goal line before it was swatted away by goalkeeper Robert Almer in Austria's 1-0 win in Vienna. Said U.S. soccer coach Jurgen Klinsmann:

"It was a goal, or it was a handball and we should have got a penalty. It's a friendly game so I don't want to make a big deal of it. But you have to ask why we are in 2013 and have no goal line technology. It's just a joke."

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