Marshall traded to Bears; Bucs sign ex-Charger Jackson
The Chicago Bears acquired Pro Bowl receiver Brandon Marshall from the Miami Dolphins. There was widespread speculation that the Bears would go after a high-profile free-agent receiver such as Vincent Jackson, but they filled their biggest hole with a blockbuster trade, instead, sending two undisclosed draft picks to Miami.
It's the first big move under new general manager Phil Emery, who replaced the fired Jerry Angelo, and it gives Jay Cutler the go-to receiver he's been seeking since he arrived from the Broncos in a trade three years ago. Even better, it reunites him with one of his top targets in Denver.
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■ Free agent wide receiver Vincent Jackson has signed a five-year, $55.55 million contract with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Jackson was one of the top wideouts available in free agency once San Diego decided not to give him the franchise tag. It didn't take him long to hook up with Tampa Bay and quarterback Josh Freeman, in whose honor Jackson got all those 5s in the deal; Freeman wears uniform No. 5.
■ Wide receiver Marques Colston decided against testing free agency and will remain with the club that gave him his first chance in the NFL as a little known seventh-round draft choice out of Hofstra. Colston and the Saints agreed to a new contract that runs up to five years. Colston has amassed more than 1,000 yards receiving in five of his six seasons in the NFL.
■ The Washington Redskins moved aggressively in the first minutes of free agency Tuesday to find some targets for likely new quarterback Robert Griffin III, agreeing to terms with wide receiver Pierre Garcon. Garcon's deal is a blockbuster: five years for $42.5 million with about $21.5 million guaranteed, according to Fox Sports. The team also agreed to terms with Josh Morgan on a contract worth $12 million over the first two years, with $7.5 million guaranteed. The full contract is for five years, but the final three can be voided. Morgan had 131 catches for nine touchdowns and a 13.5-yard average in four seasons with the San Francisco 49ers.
■ The Atlanta Falcons agreed to terms on new deals with backup quarterback Chris Redman and third receiver Harry Douglas. Both starred at the University of Louisville.
Bat Cats roll to 17th straight victory
Freshman starter A.J. Reed pitched six strong innings, giving up one run, and added three hits, including a home run and three RBI, to lead undefeated Kentucky to a 9-1 win against Wright State on Tuesday at Cliff Hagan Stadium.
Kentucky (17-0) is ranked 16th by Collegiate Baseball. Reed became the first player in UK baseball modern-era history (1979-present) to start a game on the mound and as the No. 4 hitter in the order. Reed (3-0) allowed seven hits and had six strikeouts.
Reed, who also plays first base, has hit .364 (20-for-55) with a Southeastern Conference-leading 26 RBI this season.
■ Senior UK track and field athlete Josh Nadzam is one of five finalists for the Coach Wooden Citizenship Cup. The award is presented annually to two athletes, one collegiate and one professional, for their character and leadership on and off the field and their contributions to sport and society.
Other collegiate finalists are Tommy Chase of Notre Dame (baseball), Aleca Hughes of Yale (ice hockey), Roddy Jones of Georgia Tech (football) and Cody Reichard of Miami, Ohio (ice hockey). The professional winner is Tennessee women's basketball head coach Pat Summitt.
■ Kentucky's softball team scored three runs over the final three innings but its late-inning surge fell short, 5-4, against Western Illinois at the UK Softball Complex. Ginny Carroll hit a two-run home run in the fifth for the Wildcats (10-12).
Panel upholds penalties against Knaus
The crew chief for five-time champion Jimmie Johnson lost his appeal Tuesday challenging penalties for failing the opening-day inspection at the Daytona 500. The three-member committee heard testimony from Hendrick Motorsports and NASCAR, then ruled unanimously in favor of the sanctions against Chad Knaus.
NASCAR said Knaus presented a car that had illegally modified sheet metal between the roof and the side windows. Knaus maintains NASCAR made that determination with a visual inspection, the No. 48 Chevrolet never even made it to the templates at Daytona, and the car had been used at all four restrictor-plate races in 2011.
Team owner Rick Hendrick said the team will appeal to the National Stock Car Racing chief appellate officer, and Knaus will work this weekend at Bristol Motor Speedway during the appeal process.
"I don't accept it," Hendrick said outside NASCAR's R&D Center. "Period."
Knaus was suspended six races and fined $100,000; Johnson was docked 25 points; and car chief Ron Malec also was suspended six races.
Hollywood Park sells its naming rights
Hollywood Park will add the name of sponsor Betfair to the historic track in the first such naming rights deal for a U.S. racetrack. The five-year deal announced Tuesday calls for the track to be renamed Betfair Hollywood Park and for major technology, facility and infrastructure upgrades pending approval of the track's racing dates for 2013. The upcoming spring-summer meet is to run April 26-July 15. Betfair US is a Los Angeles-based subsidiary of Betfair Group that also owns TVG, the horse racing network.
Gordon, Cain lead Royals past Reds
Alex Gordon and Lorenzo Cain homered and Everett Teaford pitched three scoreless innings as the Kansas City Royals defeated the Cincinnati Reds 7-5 in Surprise, Ariz. Gordon's home run to lead off the fourth snapped a 4-4 tie. Cain homered to open the fifth.
Jay Bruce homered in the first inning to extend his hitting streak to six games, the longest by the Reds this spring.
Neither starting pitcher was sharp. Reds right-hander Mike Leake allowed four runs on eight hits and two walks in three innings. Royals left-hander Jonathan Sanchez left after 51 pitches in two-plus innings, charged with four runs on three hits and two walks.
Lee, Patterson star in Rockets' victory
Courtney Lee and rookie Chandler Parsons each scored 21 points, Patrick Patterson blocked Serge Ibaka's point-blank putback attempt in the final 2 seconds, and the Houston Rockets charged back from an 11-point deficit in the final three minutes to beat the Oklahoma City Thunder 104-103 on Tuesday night. Lee, who starred at Western Kentucky, drilled a three-pointer from the left corner with 15 seconds left to complete a 13-1 run in the final minutes for Houston. Patterson, who starred at UK, had 12 points.
■ A source told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that the Milwaukee Bucks agreed to trade center Andrew Bogut and forward Stephen Jackson to the Golden State Warriors. The Bucks will receive guard Monta Ellis, forward Ekpe Udoh and center Kwame Brown.
The last word
Don't look for tennis star Maria Sharapova to strut her stuff on Dancing With the Stars.
"Even though I like to dance and all, there's something about dancing in prom costumes in front of national television that is just not very appealing to me."