National Sports Briefs
SYRACUSE, N.Y. — Syracuse basketball coach Jim Boeheim is wistful about his alma mater’s decision to leave the Big East Conference, but he says it’s time to move on.
“If we were leaving the old Big East, I’d probably be upset,” Boeheim said Tuesday in an interview on Syracuse radio station WSKO. “But what we have now in the Big East isn’t what we used to have. It’s completely different. Am I still sad about it? Yeah. I mean, 30 some years in a league, you bet.”
The Atlantic Coast Conference announced Sunday that its council of presidents had unanimously voted to accept Syracuse and Pittsburgh, a move that increases its membership to 14 and sends the Big East scrambling to replace two of its cornerstone programs.
“It happened pretty fast,” said Boeheim, the all-time leader in regular-season conference wins with 338. “It was one of those things that I think just came about. The university made a decision, the chancellor, and I think their concern is what’s best for Syracuse University.”
Syracuse was a charter member of the Big East, which was founded as a basketball conference in 1979.
“I think you have to understand two things,” Boeheim said. “Basketball is my concern. Are we going to a great place to play basketball? Yes. How you get there, I don’t think that matters. We’re going to a great basketball conference.”
And away from a teetering behemoth.
“We’re leaving a 17-team Big East Conference that’s going to include a team from Texas, Florida, Chicago, Wisconsin, Kentucky. We’re not leaving what we founded. We’re leaving something completely different,” Boeheim said.
ANN ARBOR, Mich. — Michigan has banned Dennis Talbott from photographing its teams on campus.
Talbott has been linked to ex-Ohio State star Terrelle Pryor in the Buckeyes’ memorabilia-for-cash scandal.
ESPN’s “Outside The Lines” has reported Pryor was paid $500 to $1,000 each time he signed mini football helmets and other gear for Talbott, a Columbus businessman and freelance photographer.
NEW YORK — Golf’s latest phenom has no interest in teeing it up with the guys.
Being able to play full-time on the LPGA Tour is challenging enough for Lexi Thompson. Two days after becoming the youngest winner on the LPGA Tour, the 16-year-old says she plans to petition for an exemption to the tour’s 18-year-old age requirement.
• LEMONT, Ill. — Fred Couples has a short list of candidates to be a captain’s pick for the Presidents Cup, and he says he will use the Tour Championship as one last audition.
One player who didn’t make the U.S. team and won’t be sweating it out his Tiger Woods. And he won’t even be playing at East Lake.
Couples made it clear three weeks ago that he would use one of his captain’s picks on Woods, and he explained his logic Sunday night during a conference call after 10 players earned a spot on the U.S. team.
“I just decided to let everyone know that they were really playing for one spot,” he said. “I felt it was justified to my team, also, that anyone outside of the top 10, they were fighting for one spot.”
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — The New Jersey Nets have hired former Duke standout Chris Carrawell to be an assistant at their NBA D League affiliate in Springfield, Mass.
Nets general manager of minor league operations Milton Lee announced the hiring on Tuesday. Carrawell will assist new Springfield Armor coach Bob MacKinnon, Jr.
The 33-year-old Carrawell joins the Armor after four years of working at his alma mater in a variety of administrative roles. He had been serving as a special assistant to the Duke women’s basketball program.
• NEW YORK — Representatives for NBA owners and players will meet twice this week, perhaps only days before training camps would have to be postponed without a new labor deal.
Staffs from both sides will meet today without leadership from either side. Commissioner David Stern, Deputy Commissioner Adam Silver, union executive director Billy Hunter, president Derek Fisher of the Lakers and other top negotiators would rejoin the talks for another meeting Thursday.
Without a breakthrough then, the NBA would likely be out of time before being forced to make changes to the calendar.
TULSA, Okla. — Bob Stoops was rewarded with a new contract extension that could keep him as coach of top-ranked Oklahoma through 2018 and pay him $34.5 million over seven years.