National Sports Briefs
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. ó The SEC has suspended officials from last weekend’s Arkansas-Florida game after the crew was involved in its second controversial call of the year.
Referee Marc Curles’ crew called a personal foul on Arkansas defensive lineman Malcolm Sheppard in the fourth quarter as the Gators were rallying for a 23-20 victory. The league said there was no video evidence to support the call.
The same group of officials called the LSU-Georgia game earlier this month, which included a late unsportsmanlike conduct penalty the league said shouldn’t have been called.
CHARLOTTE ó The Atlantic Coast Conference wants to find a city that will embrace and support its struggling football championship game.
Charlotte thinks it’s the spot, and the heavy hitters from the city’s business community lined up Wednesday to woo commissioner John Swofford.
Former Bank of America CEO Hugh McColl, Quail Hollow Championship chief Johnny Harris and others vowed that Charlotte will impress the ACC through ticket sales and auxiliary events for the 2010 and ’11 title games that the league won’t need to return to Florida, where the game has struggled to draw fans.
“It ought to be here in Charlotte,” Harris said in a news conference at Bank of America Stadium. “Our pledge is to make this not only a game, but make it an event.”
ST. LOUIS ó For the second straight offseason, Albert Pujols will undergo arthroscopic surgery on his right elbow. The 29-year-old led the majors with 47 homers this season while batting .327 with 135 RBIs.
NEW YORK ó The NBA’s locked-out referees could be back on the floor in time for the regular season.
CHARLOTTE ó The Carolina Panthers have signed safety Keith Lewis and placed cornerback Dante Wesley on the reserve-suspended list.
The NFL suspended Wesley for one game this week after his hit on Tampa Bay punt returner Clifton Smith. He’s not allowed to practice or be at the team facility until after Sunday’s game against Buffalo.
SOUTHAMPTON, Bermuda ó U.S. Open champion Lucas Glover has won the PGA Grand Slam of Golf by closing with 5-under 66 to finish five shots ahead of Masters champion Angel Cabrera.
BOSTON ó Steve Begin got his first goal with Boston, getting the tiebreaker at 8:33 of the third period Wednesday night to lift the short-handed Bruins to a 3-2 victory over the Nashville Predators.
PARIS ó Martina Hingis won’t make a comeback to competitive tennis.
The 29-year old Hingis, who retired after getting a two-year ban in 2007 for testing positive for cocaine, said in an interview with L’Equipe that she is happy with her new life.
“I’ve got a nice house, my four horses,” Hingis said. “On the tour, I had no life.”