After Illini lets Gophers have it, Tubby takes it up a notch
Mired in the first four-game losing streak of his four-year tenure as coach at Minnesota, Tubby Smith lashed out at his struggling team after a 71-62 home loss to Illinois on Thursday night. Few were spared in a post-game rant that criticized Blake Hoffarber, Rodney Williams, Colton Iverson, Chip Armelin individually and the overall mentality of his team. The Golden Gophers (16-8, 5-7 Big Ten) are 1-4 since point guard Al Nolen went down with a broken foot.
"We've got to get those folks believing and trusting in what we're doing and doing it the right way," Smith said. "Obviously what happens is people start questioning Coach's philosophy. 'Coach sucks. Coach don't know what he's doing.' After 37 years, everybody's going to question when you're losing. I don't care what it is. I don't care if it's a four-game losing streak or a one-game losing streak. I don't mind taking it. But I'm not going to take it when guys aren't doing it the way we say to do it."
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■ Texas point guard J'Covan Brown says that he didn't write profane Twitter posts under his account that complained about getting pulled from the No. 3 Longhorns' win over Oklahoma. Brown said a cousin posted the tweets and said he has apologized to his teammates. The Twitter account has been deactivated.
Softball team rips Ohio State in opener
Three Kentucky batters homered to ignite a 9-0 five-inning upset of No. 22 Ohio State on the opening night of the Florida International Combat Classic at Miami. UK, which also opened with an upset of a ranked opponent last year (No. 5 Arizona), led 4-0 before getting homers from junior Erika Silence and seniors Meagan Aull and Samantha DeMartine in a five-run fourth inning. Junior ace Chanda Bell tossed a three-hit complete game, striking out 10. UK took on Florida International late Friday night.
■ Senior Lisa Faulkner and freshman Greg Ferrucci earned career-best scores on the first of three days of the Southeastern Conference Diving Championships at Florida. Faulkner scored 347.60 on the women's three-meter board finals to place fourth. Ferrucci scored 378.50 on the men's one-meter board to place fifth.
■ UK had a pair of women's winners in the Tyson Invitational indoor track and field meet at Arkansas. Sophomore Shelby Kennard cleared 12 feet, 91/2 inches to prevail in the unseeded division of the pole vault. Precious Nwokey, a junior, took the long jump with a distance of 20-21/2. Keith Hayes, a junior, clocked 7.90 to place fifth in the men's 60-meter hurdles.
■ UK's 12th-ranked men's tennis team fell 4-3 at No. 16 Illinois. Kentucky got wins from second-ranked Eric Quigley and Anthony Rossi. Quigley and Brad Cox won their doubles match, but the Illini took the other two doubles. Quigley topped No. 11 Dennis Nevolo 6-3, 6-4. Rossi edged Stephen Hoh 3-6, 6-1, 6-3.
■ No. 19 Northwestern (4-3) swept UK 6-0 in women's tennis at Evanston, Ill. UK's Wildcats fell to 0-5.
Bonds must enter a third plea
Barry Bonds will have to be arraigned and enter a plea next month for the third time since he was initially charged in 2007 with lying to a federal grand jury about his steroid use. U.S. District Judge Susan Illston on Friday ordered Bonds to enter his new plea after prosecutors revised the charges against him, cutting his indictment from 11 counts to five. Bonds is expected to plead not guilty for the third time at a hearing March 1.
■ Roger Clemens has issued a subpoena to the House committee that he's accused of lying to about using performance-enhancing drugs during his pitching career. The former baseball star wants all interview summaries, notes and memoranda related to the hearing on steroid use in Major League Baseball held three years ago by the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. Clemens is facing perjury, false statement and obstruction of Congress charges in federal court.
■ Indians minor league left-hander Jeremy Sowers has had surgery to repair a tear in his rotator cuff. The 2004 first-round draft pick and former Ballard High School star spent last season at Triple-A Columbus, pitching with soreness.
■ Right-hander Jeremy Guthrie and the Orioles have agreed to a $5.75 million, one-year contract, avoiding salary arbitration. Guthrie, 31, led the Orioles in wins and was 11-14 with a 3.83 ERA.
■ First baseman James Loney and the Dodgers have agreed to a one-year contract worth $4,875,000, avoiding arbitration. Loney hit .267 with 10 homers and 88 RBI last season.
■ The Houston Astros have agreed to one-year deals with three pitchers: Sergio Escalona ($417,000), a left-hander acquired from Philadelphia last month, and former Lexington Legends right-handers Arcenio Leon ($414,000) and Henry Villar ($416,500).
■ Chuck Tanner, the manager who led the We Are Family Pittsburgh Pirates in 1979 to one of the greatest comebacks in World Series history, died Friday after a long illness. He was 82. He died in his hometown of New Castle, Pa., where he had been in hospice care. Tanner managed the White Sox, Athletics, Pirates and Braves to a record of 1,352-1,381 from 1970-88. He won one division title and finished second five times.
Marino leads by 4; Holmes fires 64
Steve Marino made only one mistake, on the par-5 14th for his only bogey of the tournament. He followed with three birdies over the last four holes of the host course for a 7-under 66 and a comfortable lead in the Pebble Beach National Pro-Am in California. Having opened with a 65 at Spyglass Hill, Marino has a 36-hole total of 13-under 141. D.A. Points shot 70 and is 9-under par, a stroke better than Keegan Bradley. Low score of the day, 64s at Monterey Peninsula, were turned in by Kentuckian J.B. Holmes (7-under 135) and D.J. Brigman (2-under 140).
■ Tiger Woods turned in the day's best score with a bogey-free 6-under 66 to surge into contention at the Dubai Desert Classic. The round put him at 7-under 137, four strokes behind leader Rory McIlroy. Woods finished with six birdies. McIlroy followed his opening 65 with a 68.
■ Jay Don Blake opened with an 8-under 64 at the Allianz Championship to take a one-stroke lead over Tom Lehman after the first round of the Champions Tour circuit's first full-field event, at Boca Raton, Fla.
Clijsters regains No. 1 tennis ranking
Kim Clijsters has regained the No. 1 women's ranking. The Belgian took another big step in her return to tennis by defeating Jelena Dokic of Australia 6-3, 6-0 on Friday to reach the semifinals of the Open Gaz de France at Paris. Clijsters will take the top spot from Caroline Wozniacki when the rankings are released Monday.
■ In the most significant test of the recently repaved 2½ -mile Daytona International Speedway, cars topped 203 mph Friday during practice for the Budweiser Shootout. Joey Logano turned the fast lap with an average speed of 203.087 mph in the second of two practice sessions. Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Kyle Busch also topped 203 mph. In all, 10 cars hit 200 mph.
■ Tom Carnegie, the veteran broadcaster who became best-known to generations as the voice of the Indianapolis 500, died Friday at his Indianapolis home following an illness, according to former employer WRTV. He was 91.
The last word
Top-ranked Lee Westwood, who had four birdies but bogeyed two of his last four holes Friday at the Dubai Desert Classic:
"I didn't give myself enough chances. It was just a plod round really, a bit of a boring day."