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Headlines from around the world in sports


Source: Special teamer Osgood back with 49ers

SAN FRANCISCO – A person with knowledge of the deal said veteran special teams standout and wide receiver Kassim Osgood has agreed to terms on a new one-year deal with the San Francisco 49ers.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity yesterday because the team hadn’t announced Osgood’s signing. In his first season with San Francisco last year, the 33-year-old Osgood had 12 special teams tackles by the 49ers’ count, a fumble recovery, his first career blocked punt, and a touchdown. He recovered a muffed punt in the end zone in a win at Tennessee on Oct. 20.

An 11-year NFL veteran, Osgood played in 14 regular-season games for the 49ers and also had one catch for 17 yards playing a limited role in the deep 49ers receiving corps.


Steelers sign Moats to one-year deal

PITTSBURGH – The Pittsburgh Steelers signed former Buffalo Bills linebacker Arthur Moats to a one-year contract.

The 26-year-old Moats spent four seasons in Buffalo and posted career highs last season with 12 starts and 48 tackles.

The Steelers are looking for depth at both inside and outside linebacker after cutting Larry Foote and LaMarr Woodley earlier this month. General Manager Kevin Colbert said during NFL owners meetings in Florida on Sunday that the team isn’t ruling out the chance at bringing back James Harrison, who spent a decade with the club before being released last spring.

Harrison spent 2013 with the Cincinnati Bengals but is now looking for work after he was cut.


Judge refuses to release Sharper from jail

LOS ANGELES – A judge in Los Angeles has again refused to release former NFL All-Pro safety Darren Sharper from jail.

Sharper is awaiting trial in Los Angeles after pleading not guilty to charges that he raped and drugged two women last year. He was previously released on $1 million bail before being charged in Arizona with similar counts.

Now, his lawyers said he should be freed again and kept under house arrest because authorities in Arizona have said they won’t seek his extradition.

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Renee Korn rejected that argument on Monday, saying she would wait and see if Arizona does seek extradition.

Her ruling came after prosecutors said the Arizona governor’s office is preparing a warrant to extradite Sharper, even though he will first go on trial in Los Angeles. An April 15 hearing was set.

College basketball

CBS, Turner report big numbers for NCAA tourney

NEW YORK – CBS Sports and Turner Sports said viewership of the NCAA men’s basketball tournament is the highest since 1993.

The two networks, which share coverage of the tournament, released Nielsen numbers yesterday after the conclusion of the opening weekend of the tournament. The event averaged 9.227 million total viewers, which is up 4 percent from the same weekend last year, according to Nielsen.

The 5.9 rating averaged in U.S. households through the first six days is the highest number in 17 years, dating to the 5.9 scored in 1998.

The games have been broadcast across CBS, TBS, TNT and truTV, and viewership has climbed through every round.

Coverage resumes with the regional semifinals on Thursday and Friday.

College basketball

Houston Coach Dickey resigns after 4 seasons

HOUSTON – Houston Coach James Dickey said he is stepping down after four seasons with the Cougars because of “a family matter that requires my time and energy.”

Dickey just completed the fourth season of a five-year contract with Houston. He coached Texas Tech from 1991-2001, and replaced Tom Penders at Houston in 2010. Dickey has a career record of 217-196.

He says in a statement it was a difficult decision, but did not give details as to why.

The Cougars went 17-16 this season with an 8-10 record in the American Athletic Conference. They also beat three Top 25 teams.

The Cougars’ only postseason appearance under Dickey came in 2013 in the CBI.

Athletic Director Mark Rhoades said Dickey’s “decision to step down comes with great heartache for all involved.”


Silver: Two years of college best for NBA players

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Adam Silver said he’s heard the “Bill Gates theory” numerous times from critics over the last month: You shouldn’t be required to attend college to become a millionaire.

But the new NBA commissioner steadfastly believes that basketball players should spend at least two years in college before being allowed to enter the draft – instead of the required one.

Fair or not, he said it’s simply best for the league.

Speaking before yesterday’s Rockets-Bobcats game in Charlotte, Silver says “I think two years is the right balance.”

That means if Silver had his way Jabari Parker and Andrew Wiggins would be staying in school another year. But there’s little he can do about that.

An agreement between the league and players association is not imminent.


Lakers C Gasol has vertigo, doubtful for tonight

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. – Los Angeles Lakers center Pau Gasol was diagnosed with vertigo.

Gasol isn’t expected to play when the Lakers host the New York Knicks today.

The 7-foot Spaniard missed the second half of Los Angeles’s victory over Orlando after complaining of dizziness and nausea. He spent the night in a hospital, but the Lakers said an MRI of his head was normal.

Gasol will be re-examined today, but likely won’t play against the Knicks.

Gasol’s vertigo is the latest in a staggering list of injuries and ailments for the Lakers (23-46), who are on track for their worst season since moving to California.

Lakers guard Xavier Henry plans to keep playing with a torn ligament in his wrist. Steve Nash is questionable for today with his usual back problems.


Ex-player Ross erroneously reported dead

DALLAS – Former SMU and NBA basketball player Quinton Ross had to ease the fears of friends and family members after he was erroneously reported dead.

Ross lives near Dallas and was attending last night’s NIT game between LSU and SMU.

He said he woke to a phone loaded with messages from people concerned about his well-being. He went online and found the New York Post had run a story identifying him as a man found dead and buried on a beach.

The newspaper later corrected the story.

The 32-year-old Ross says he called loved ones and posted on Facebook to “let everybody know I was OK.”

He said: “I mean, it was a tough day, man. Mostly for my family and friends.”

Ross played seven NBA seasons with five teams.


Quintana gets $21 million, five-year deal from White Sox

CHICAGO – Pitcher Jose Quintana and the Chicago White Sox agreed to a $21 million, five-year contract that would increase to $26.5 million if he is eligible for salary arbitration after this season.

The deal announced yesterday includes two team options that could add $22 million.

Quintana has 1 year, 133 days of major league service. The cutoff for arbitration eligibility was 2 years, 122 days this year and 2-139 last year.

After agreeing this month to a one-year deal paying $550,000 in the major leagues and $300,000 in the minors, Quintero gets an $850,000 salary this season.

If eligible for arbitration at the end of this year, he would get $3.4 million in 2015, $5.4 million in 2016, $7 million in 2017 and $8.85 million in 2018.


Mariners release RHP Baker

PEORIA, Ariz. – The Seattle Mariners released pitcher Scott Baker.

The 32-year-old right-hander asked for his release after refusing an assignment to Triple-A Tacoma. The club made the move yesterday.

Baker was 1-1 with a 6.75 ERA in four spring training starts for Seattle, allowing nine earned runs and 16 hits in 12 innings.

Baker was in contention for a spot in the starting rotation, currently missing injured pitchers Hisashi Iwakuma and Taijuan Walker. Neither is expected to be ready for his first turn.

With ace Felix Hernandez the only certainty, the Mariners have right-handers Blake Beavan and Erasmo Ramirez and left-handers James Paxton, Roenis Elias and Randy Wolf in the mix for four available spots.

Baker spent his first six major league seasons with Minnesota and pitched briefly for the Chicago Cubs last year.

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