Headlines from around the world in sports
Mariota will return to Ducks
EUGENE, Ore. – Quarterback Marcus Mariota announced that he will return to Oregon for his junior season.
There had been speculation that Mariota might declare himself eligible for the NFL. Following Oregon’s 36-35 victory over Oregon State in the Civil War last Friday, he said he hadn’t yet made a decision.
But yesterday, the school announced on its website that Mariota would stay, along with junior Hronis Grasu, a three-year starter at center.
Mariota has thrown 30 touchdowns this season for the Ducks, who finished the regular season 10-2.
Packers aren’t ruling out Rodgers for Sunday
GREEN BAY, Wis. – The Green Bay Packers aren’t ruling out Aaron Rodgers even though the star quarterback hasn’t yet been medically cleared to play since breaking his left collarbone a month ago.
Packers coach Mike McCarthy said yesterday that Rodgers will practice in a limited fashion tosday but backup Matt Flynn will take the starter’s snaps.
Speaking on his weekly radio show yesterday, Rodgers confirmed that he underwent an X-ray and CT scan earlier in the day. He admitted that the outlook wasn’t as promising as he’d hoped when he met with team physician Dr. Pat McKenzie.
The Packers enter Sunday’s game 5-6-1 and are 0-4-1 since Rodgers was injured on the opening series of their loss to the Chicago Bears on Nov. 4.
Chiefs sign Powe, release Love
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Kansas City Chiefs signed defensive tackle Jerrell Powe yesterday and released defensive tackle Kyle Love.
The 331-pound Powe was the Chiefs’ sixth-round draft pick (199th overall) out of Ole Miss in 2011. He played in 10 games in 2011-12, recording six tackles, before he was released Sept. 1, 2013.
Love, a three-year NFL veteran, played in 42 games with the Patriots and Chiefs, playing in one game for Kansas City this season.
The Chiefs also said they had added rookie fullback Toben Opurum to the practice squad. The former University of Kansas defensive player was on the squad until his release Nov. 20.
Jets place KR-WR Cribbs on IR, sign KR Reynaud
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. – The New York Jets placed kick returner-wide receiver Josh Cribbs on injured reserve and signed former Tennessee kick returner Darius Reynaud to replace him.
Cribbs injured his right shoulder in the Jets’ 23-3 loss to Miami on Sunday. Coach Rex Ryan said Monday that the injury appeared “pretty serious.”
Cribbs, signed by the Jets in October, averaged 24.5 yards on 20 kick returns and returned eight punts for a 12-yard average.
Reynaud was cut by the Titans in October after muffing a punt that resulted in a touchdown by San Francisco. He has two career punt returns for scores, and also has returned a kickoff for a touchdown. Reynaud, averaging 22.5 yards on kickoff returns and 9.7 on punts, has also spent time with the Giants and Minnesota Vikings.
Disappointing Nets reassign assistant coach Frank
NEW YORK – The disappointing Brooklyn Nets shook up their coaching staff yesterday, reassigning top assistant Lawrence Frank to a non-bench role.
Head Coach Jason Kidd said Frank will not be at practices or games, and that he will be writing daily reports. He said the two had “different philosophies.”
“This is a decision that I had to make and I made it and we move on,” Kidd said.
Kidd played for Frank with the Nets and hired him when he became a first-time coach in June. Frank had spent the two previous seasons as coach of the Detroit Pistons, and earned a league-high 21.4 percent of the vote as best assistant by executives who voted in the preseason NBA.com GM survey.
Stewart says Mobil 1 renews sponsorship with team
LAS VEGAS – Tony Stewart said ExxonMobil renewed its multiyear sponsorship of both the three-time NASCAR champion and Stewart-Haas Racing.
Stewart made the announcement that Mobil 1 will continue its relationship with him and his team while hosting the year-end edition of “Tony Stewart Live” on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.
Mobil 1 will be the primary sponsor on Stewart’s Chevrolet for 11 races. Stewart missed the final four months of the season with a broken leg, but is expected to return to his car at the season-opening Daytona 500 in February.
Stewart believes Mobil 1 was instrumental in Danica Patrick’s historic pole-winning run for the Daytona 500, as well as Stewart and Ryan Newman qualifying in the top 10.
Burton hired for NBC broadcast booth
LAS VEGAS – NBC Sports Group made driver Jeff Burton its first hire for the broadcast booth for when the network resumes covering NASCAR in 2015.
The multiyear hiring of Burton was announced yesterday in Las Vegas.
Burton’s career as a full-time driver is ending this season. Michael Waltrip Racing said Monday Burton will be a test driver for the team in 2014 and drive in select races.
NBC Sports executive producer Sam Flood says Burton will split his time in 2014 with MWR and contributing to NASCAR programming on NBC Sports Network.
NBCUniversal has the exclusive rights to the final 20 Sprint Cup Series races, and final 19 Nationwide Series events beginning in 2015 and select NASCAR Regional & Touring Series events and other live content also beginning in 2015.