National Sports Briefs
WASHINGTON, D.C. ó Congress is stepping up its efforts to push the NFL and its players toward an agreement on testing for human growth hormone.
In letters obtained by The AP, leaders of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee invited NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith and the chief executive of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency to a meeting on Capitol Hill.
Blood testing for HGH was part of the collective bargaining deal struck between the league and players this summer ó but only if the union agreed to the methods.
The players’ union has questioned the safety and reliability of the test.
OAKLAND, Calif. ó A’s general manager Billy Beane expects to hear “very soon” from Commissioner Bud Selig about whether the club will be allowed to move south to San Jose and build a new ballpark.
The reigning World Series champion San Francisco Giants currently hold the territorial rights to San Jose and technology-rich Silicon Valley in Santa Clara County, where the A’s hope to build a new ballpark and then relocate some 40 miles south of their current home.
A spokesman said the commissioner’s office had no further update or comment. The Giants declined to comment as Selig has asked the two clubs not to publicly debate the issue.
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. ó Tennessee athletic director Dave Hart says the Southeastern Conference will expand again and officials at each school need to have a number of frank discussions before moving forward.
The addition of Texas A&M as the SEC’s 13th team was a good one, Hart said, but the league’s leaders must take their next steps deliberately.
The SEC announced Sunday that Texas A&M will join the conference in July after leaving the Big 12. SEC Commissioner Mike Slive said later in the week that the league’s presidents and chancellors are not currently considering any other schools for admission.
KINGSBARNS, Scotland ó Dustin Johnson doesn’t begrudge Tiger Woods for hiring his caddie, saying such decisions are part of the business of golf.
Joe LaCava left Johnson on Sunday to become Woods’ third full-time caddie.
“I spoke to Tiger about it. There’s no hard feelings at all,” Johnson said Thursday after shooting a 1-under 71 in the first round of the Dunhill Links Championship.
LaCava was the longtime caddie for Fred Couples but joined Johnson this summer. Johnson, one of the most talented American players, was looking for a caddie. Johnson won The Barclays last month with LaCava on the bag.
TORONTO ó The lawyer for a man who threw a banana at a black NHL player says his client deeply regrets what he did and had no idea his actions could be seen as racist.
Lawyer Faisal Joseph says Chris Moorhouse was caught up in the drama of a tense game featuring his favorite hockey team and threw the banana at the Flyers’ Wayne Simmonds in hopes of preventing the winning goal. The Red Wings won the game played in London, Ontario.
Moorhouse, who says he is deeply remorseful, has been charged under Ontario’s Trespass to Property Act and faces a maximum fine of $2,000. Police say his actions do not meet the test for a hate crime or mischief charge.
BLOOMFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich. ó Detroit Pistons center Ben Wallace was charged with drunken driving and unlawfully carrying a concealed weapon after a traffic stop.
Bloomfield Township police said the 37-year-old Wallace was arrested about 3 a.m. Saturday after officers observed a Cadillac Escalade being driven erratically. Police said they found an unloaded pistol in a backpack.
Officers say Wallace was above Michigan’s blood-alcohol limit of 0.08 percent.
Wallace, who helped the Pistons win the 2004 NBA title, was arraigned and released on a $5,000 personal bond. His next court hearing is Monday.
CINCINNATI ó The NCAA placed the University of Cincinnati on two years of probation for violating rules on calling recruits in its women’s basketball and football programs.
The NCAA said the university discovered the improper calls and reported them. The NCAA found a major violation in women’s basketball and secondary ones in football and women’s basketball.
The university said the NCAA accepted its self-imposed sanctions, which it has completed. They include restrictions on making calls to recruits during certain periods and on the size of the women’s basketball staff and its recruiters this season.
Cincinnati said the major violation case came in June 2009-November 2010.
NEW YORK (AP) ó Sky center Sylvia Fowles was named the WNBA’s defensive player of the year.
Fowles received 19 of 40 votes from a panel of sports writers and broadcasters. She edged Indiana’s four-time defensive player of the year Tamika Catchings.
Fowles was second in the league in rebounding at 10.2 per game, including a league-best 7.3 defensive boards. She was also tops with 2.0 blocks per game.
The former LSU star finished third in scoring (22.0), becoming the second player in WNBA history to average 20 points and 10 rebounds in a season ó joining Chamique Holdsclaw, who had 20.5 and 10.9, respectively, for Washington in 2003.