Ex-Cat Lorenzen goes from GM to QB for indoor team
Jared Lorenzen is moving from the front office to the field.
Lorenzen, general manager of the Northern Kentucky River Monsters, announced he will be starting at quarterback when the indoor football team makes its debut Friday night against the Canton Cougars.
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Lorenzen, a former standout at Highlands and the University of Kentucky, will relinquish his general manager title while he's on the active roster. "I've been around it since September and I have resisted the urge," Lorenzen said. "Then when the pads came out, I couldn't resist any longer."
Lorenzen has played professionally for the New York Giants — with whom he won a Super Bowl ring in the 2007 season — and the Lexington Horsemen of the AF2 league. He automatically becomes the biggest name in the Ultimate Indoor Football League.
The River Monsters play their home games at the Bank of Kentucky Center on the campus of Northern Kentucky University. Their first home game is March 18.
League to use new test for concussions
The NFL says it will use a new sideline test to determine concussions next season. The league said in a release Wednesday that the test will include a checklist of symptoms, a limited neurologic evaluation and a balance assessment. It will use many components of the evaluation process developed during a Concussion in Sport meeting at Zurich in 2008.
The NFL also wants all 50 states and the District of Columbia to pass legislation that could help cut down on concussions suffered by young football players. The GOP-led House is unlikely to support that kind of federal role in local matters, so the league sees a bigger opening at the state level.
■ Linebacker LaMarr Woodley signed Pittsburgh's one-year franchise tender offer, the Steelers announced on Wednesday. In the final season of his rookie contract, Woodley, 26, made $550,000. But next season, he'll stand to make more than $10 million because of the tag and his position. The Steelers could also sign him to a long-term contract.
■ The Jacksonville Jaguars placed a franchise tag on Pro Bowl tight end Marcedes Lewis. The Jaguars and Lewis will continue to negotiate a long-term deal, but the non-exclusive tag essentially assures both sides at least another season together.
■ A person with knowledge of the procedure said Houston Texans Pro Bowl running back Arian Foster, the NFL's leading rusher in 2010, underwent arthroscopic surgery on his right knee. The person, who spoke on condition of anonymity because neither Foster nor the team has publicly disclosed the details, called Wednesday's procedure "minor" and said Foster was already walking again.
■ New York Jets Coach Rex Ryan plays himself in an episode of CSI: NY shot Wednesday in Los Angeles. CBS says Ryan and Jets General Manager Mike Tannenbaum appear in a scene with actors Gary Sinise and Eddie Cahill that is scheduled to air in the spring.
Legends tickets go on sale at Fan Fest
The Lexington Legends' annual Fan Fest is scheduled for Saturday, March 5 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Whitaker Bank Ballpark. Fan Fest marks the first day tickets to individual games will be on sale. There will be free tours of the ballpark, including the players' clubhouse, along with a visit from Legends mascot Big L and activities for children. Individual game tickets will go on sale at 10 a.m. at the Whitaker Bank Ballpark box office, by phone at (859) 422-7867, or online at www.lexingtonlegends.com. The Legends' home and season opener is Thursday, April 7 at 7:05 p.m. against the Charleston RiverDogs, an affiliate of the New York Yankees.
Zenyatta bred to Bernardini
Horse of the Year Zenyatta made her first trip to the breeding shed on Wednesday to mate with 2006 Preakness Stakes winner Bernardini. According to Zenyatta.com, which is run by Zenyatta's racing manager Dottie Ingordo Shirreffs, wife of trainer John Shirreffs, Zenyatta was vanned from Lane's End Farm to Darley, where Bernardini is stabled.
Zenyatta was retired in November after a spectacular career in which she won 19 times in 20 starts, the 7-year-old's only defeat coming by a head to Blame in the Breeders' Cup Classic. She edged Blame to win the Eclipse Award for Horse of the Year in January.
The meeting marked the second high-profile mating this week. Rachel Alexandra, the 2009 Horse of the Year, was bred to two-time Horse of the Year Curlin on Monday.
SPORTS IN THE COURTS
Alleged tree poisoner finds attorney
A Birmingham attorney plans to represent the man accused of poisoning the oak trees at Toomer's Corner on Auburn's campus after three predecessors withdrew. Glennon Threatt Jr. said Wednesday he has spoken with Harvey Updyke Jr. "extensively about the case" by phone and filed a notice of appearance in Lee County Circuit Court. Updyke had called a radio show Jan. 27 saying he poisoned the trees at Toomer's Corner, where Auburn fans have for years celebrated wins, after the Alabama-Auburn game.
"He gave what's tantamount to a confession on the radio, but he told the police that he didn't do it," Threatt said when asked if Updyke had discussed his guilt or innocence. Updyke is free on bond on a first-degree criminal mischief charge. Threatt says a preliminary hearing will be held March 2.
Concussions force Arizona St. QB to quit
Arizona State quarterback Steven Threet says he's quitting football after suffering four concussions in the past five years, including two last fall. Threet had a concussion Oct. 23 at California and another Nov. 26 against UCLA that ended his junior season. He told The Arizona Republic on Wednesday that he's still experiencing symptoms from the last concussion and still has headaches and has trouble sleeping.
Olympic Trials qualifier in Lexington
Boxers from five states will meet in Lexington this weekend for a three-day tournament that could lead to a shot at the U.S. Olympic Trials. The Kentucky Amateur Boxing Association and Lexington Police Activities League are sponsoring the 2011 USA Boxing Region 5 Senior Open Championships Friday through Sunday. Two Lexington athletes will compete: Traynora Locke, in the women's 178-pound class, and Greg Vagara in the men's 141. Tiffany Hearn, a reigning women's national champion from Louisville, will also compete, along with boxers from Ohio, Indiana, Michigan and Illinois.
Friday's and Saturday's competitions will be held at Consolidated Baptist Church, 1650 Russell Cave Rd. Bouts begin at 5 p.m. Friday and 3 p.m. Saturday. Sunday's finals will be held at 4 Seasons Martial Arts at 951 Floyd Dr., Suite 100, with finals beginning at noon. For more information, call tournament coordinator Jerry Loughran, at (859) 333-7025.
The last word
Budd Bailey of the Buffalo News, after Trevor Bayne, 20, won the Daytona 500 in just his second NASCAR race:
"He's believed to be the first victor of the race to be on a learner's permit."