Sports Outside the Beltway

Russian figure skater Andrei Luti charged with DUI

He also stole a car shortly after taking part in the Skate America competition. From AP-

Police said Russian figure skater Andrei Lutai stole a car and drove it while drunk after finishing 10th overall in the Skate America competition in Lake Placid.

Police said the car was stolen from a service station lot late Sunday night. A garage employee followed the car and called police.

Sgt. Carol Hayes said officers pulled over the 23-year-old Lutai, of St. Petersburg, a few minutes later.

Police have charged Lutai with grand larceny, criminal possession of stolen property, unauthorized use of a vehicle and aggravated driving while intoxicated.

In other skating news, Yu-Na Kim won the female portion of the Skate America competition. She remains the heavy favorite to win the gold at next year’s Olympics.


UNLV fires Football coach Mike Sanford

In spite of a horrific record, he got a contract extension just a year ago. From AP-

UNLV has fired football coach Mike Sanford after five losing seasons, a 15-43 record and no bowl appearances.

Sanford’s firing comes after a 45-17 loss to Air Force on Saturday made the Rebels ineligible for a bowl game.

In a joint statement, university president Neal Smatresk and interim athletic director Jerry Koloskie said Sanford will coach the final game of the season at home against San Diego State on the Nov. 28.

“We agree this action is needed at this time,” Smatresk said.

Sanford, 54, will be paid a $225,000 buyout, under terms of a three-year contract extension the coach signed last year.

Yet another case of a University paying for someone not to work. When can I get a job like this?

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Serbia’s president arrested for drinking at Soccer stadium

I’m so glad a country who has never had a President convicted of war crimes takes enforcing the law against all its citizens seriously. From AP-

Serbian President Boris Tadic faces a fine for allegedly drinking champagne at a stadium with his sports minister and the head of the soccer federation.

Judge Zoran Pasalic said Tuesday the three are requested to appear in court on Dec. 1.

Drinking alcohol at and around sports venues is illegal in Serbia and fines range from $150 to $1,500.

Police filed misdemeanor charges against all three officials after photos were published of them holding glasses filled with champagne after Serbia’s 5-0 victory over Romania last month in World Cup qualifying.

Tadic said he drank no champagne and just made a toast. I don’t care, throw the book at him.


Shooting blanks- Baltimore Ravens beat Cleveland 16-0

Would you believe this was the defensively Baltimore’s first shutout since 2006. From AP-

For 30 minutes, the Ravens were inefficient, unproductive and disorganized.Ravens Browns Football

In 17 seconds, they changed all that.

Ray Rice scored on a 13-yard run on Baltimore’s first possession of the third quarter and safety Dawan Landry returned an interception of Quinn 48 yards for a touchdown on Cleveland’s next play as the Ravens overcame a horrendous start and routed the lowly Browns.

Baltimore’s second PAT attempt was blocked. They scored a field goal later in the game.

The Browns continue to be a horrendous offensive team. They have scored SIX offensive touchdowns over their last 15 games. Whether it’s Derek Anderson of the sub-40 passer rating or the hugely disappointing Brady Quinn(Don’t Cam Cameron look like a genius now for passing on Quinn in 2007), Cleveland can’t do anything offensively. The team is 1-8 so far for 2009 and any prediction for two wins at year end is looking overly optimistic.


ShopRite Classic returning to LPGA in 2010

The full 2010 schedule will be announced later this week. From AP-

The ShopRite LPGA Classic is back in business.

Tournament organizers, ShopRite and the LPGA announced Monday that the longtime Atlantic City-area fixture will return to the women’s schedule in June after a three-year absence.

The $1.5 million event will be held June 14-20 at the Seaview Resort in Galloway Township outside Atlantic City, coinciding with the U.S. Open at Pebble Beach.

Tournament executive director Tim Erensen said the parties signed a series of five one-year contracts that include opt-outs for all signees after each year.

This is without question good news for the LPGA and it would have never happened if Carolyn Bivens was still Commissioner. It was her decision to give Shoprite’s dates on the LPGA schedule to a new sponsor and tournament(Since departed Ginn Tribute) that caused the tournament to fold up its tent. At the time it happened I sharply criticized Bivens’ actions and said the course she was taking was potentially disastrous for the LPGA. I proved to be right, but few people other than myself was willing to say the truth about Bivens till 2008. She’s gone now and it is already looking like the LPGA is better off without her and can make a recovery from the mess she created.

Hat tip- Waggleroom


Golden State Warriors trade Stephen Jackson to Charlotte

I seriously doubt Jackson is going to be happy playing for another loser. From AP-

The Golden State Warriors on Monday offloaded disgruntled forward Stephen Jackson to a nonplayoff team, sending him to the Charlotte Bobcats instead of dealing him to one of Jackson’s preferred destinations in Cleveland.

In a deal that NBA front-office sources said came together quickly Sunday night after on-and-off talks with the Bobcats in recent weeks, Golden State agreed to send Jackson and guard Acie Law to the Bobcats in exchange for veteran swingmen Raja Bell and Vladimir Radmanovic.


The Warriors, meanwhile, had reached the point where they felt they had to move Jackson as soon as possible in the name of team health. The Warriors were not only privately furious that Jackson would unsettle the team with a trade demand so soon after receiving an extension but also fearful that Jackson’s discontent would continue to hang over a group of promising youngsters headlined by Stephen Curry and Anthony Randolph.

So Golden State decided not to wait until Dec. 15, when rookies and players who signed contracts over the summer become eligible to be traded. Cleveland’s best offer would have provided more payroll relief, but the Warriors contend that they satisfied multiple objectives by taking the Bobcats’ offer.

Bell’s $5.3 million contract expires at season’s end, while Radmanovic is earning $6.5 million this season and is due to earn $6.9 million next season. Jackson is earning $7.7 million this season before starting a three-year contract extension worth nearly $28 million, so the long-term savings of having Radmanovic on the payroll instead of Jackson is roughly $21 million.

So Golden State traded a high priced pain in the ass for a high priced unproductive player. I just don’t see the Warriors being any better from this deal.


San Jose State Coach Dick Tomey announces his retirement

The Spartans haven’t been particularly successful since he took over in 2005, but Tomey leaves the school as its winningest coach in 20 years. From AP-

Dick Tomey created countless long-term relationships during his 29 years as a head football coach.

The Gold Room in the Simpkins Center was overflowing Monday with his latest friends, colleagues and players when Tomey announced he was retiring from coaching, effective following San Jose State’s game against Louisiana Tech on Dec. 5.

The 71-year-old coach said this was an opportunity for he and his wife, Nanci Kincaid, to “open a new chapter.”

“We have a lot of responsibilities left on the mainland, including six grandchildren to visit, but effectively we will be going back to the place we love the most and that’s Hawaii,” said Tomey, who has 182 wins during stints at Hawaii, Arizona and San Jose State.

Tomey’s first college head coaching job was at Hawaii, which he built into a powerhouse when he took over in 1977. He left for Arizona in 1987 and built the Wildcats into a top 10 power before leaving after the 2000 season.

He took over at San Jose State in 2005 and found a program in turmoil. Academic penalties cost the Spartans 57 scholarships and limited spring practices during his tenure at the school.

Enjoy your retirement coach.


She did it- Michelle Wie wins Lorena Ochoa Invitational

She edged Paula Creamer by two shots. Wie opened the final round tied for the lead with Cristie Kerr.

Wie birdied two of the first three holes and was never out of the lead. At some point during the final round, both Creamer and Kerr tied Wie for the lead but fell back. Creamer’s bogey at 17 was particularly critical.Mexico LPGA Tour Golf

Wie closed out her win with a birdie on 18.

Jiyai Shin after entering the weekend with a 3-shot lead, finished 74-71 and ended the tournament in a 3-way tie for 3rd with Kerr and Morgan Pressel.

Lorena Ochoa finished sixth. While Shin widened her lead for POY it is still a very much open race. Ochoa can still take the title and doesn’t necessarily need a win. Kerr can do it with a win if Ochoa and Shin both finish out of the top 10 in next week’s tour championship.

I won’t mention what Wie’s victory ended. The golf media has only been hammering it over our heads for the last few months. Then some members of the media and the American public look at Wie or Asians as lesser Americans. I won’t get into that stupid subject unless one of those culprits then make hay of Wie’s win as a American triumph.

The next few days are sure to see a deluge of articles about how big the win was for both Wie and the LPGA. Wie’s critics can’t separate the fact that the LPGA’s future success or even survival may be riding on this woman’s back. What other female golfer excites fans and brings them to tournaments? It ain’t Ochoa, Shin, or even Kerr and Creamer.


Former NBA Coach and Player Al Cervi dead at 92

Also known as Digger, he once led the NBL in scoring. RIP.Cervi

Al Cervi, a pro basketball star who coached the Syracuse Nationals to the 1955 NBA championship, has died in upstate New York at age 92.

The 5-foot-11-inch Cervi was one of the strongest backcourt players of the 1940s and 1950s. Nicknamed “Digger,” he was the 1947 National Basketball League scoring champion and MVP as a guard for the Rochester Royals.

He became a player-coach for the Syracuse Nationals in 1948, continuing in that role after the team joined the NBA. He retired as a player in 1953 but coached the Nats until 1957.

He was elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1985.


Carolina signs Goalie Manny Legace

He will be the Hurricanes backup netminder as Michael Leighton fills in for the injured Cam Ward. From AP-

The Carolina Hurricanes have signed veteran goaltender Manny Legace to a one-year, $500,000 deal, general manager Jim Rutherford said Monday.

The Hurricanes lost starting goalie Cam Ward to injury Saturday for at least a month.

Legace, a 10-year NHL veteran with the Los Angeles Kings, Detroit Red Wings and St. Louis Blues, has played six games with the AHL’s Chicago Wolves this season, logging 317 minutes while going 2-2-1 with a 3.21 goals-against average.

He last played in the NHL for the Blues last season.

At this point in his life, Legace is a mediocre backup Goalie at best. The Canes better hope Leighton picks up the slack or this season will grow even worse than one that already features a eleven game streak without a win.


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