Oklahoma No. 3 in college basketball
ARLINGTON, Va., Feb. 24 (UPI) -- Arizona stayed on top and Oklahoma moved up two spots to third in the latest college coaches' basketball poll released Monday.
Arizona (21-2) routed Arizona State, 92-72, in its only game last week and received 29 of the 31 first-place votes and 773 points from the panel of Division I coaches.
Oklahoma (19-4) defeated ranked foes Oklahoma State and Kansas to rise to third this week, behind No. 2 Kentucky (22-3) with 710 votes. The Sooners built a 32-point lead against the then-No. 6 Jayhawks on Sunday and went on to a 77-70 win.
The most notable fall this week belongs to Louisville (19-4), which lost to Memphis, 80-73, on Wednesday and was routed by Cincinnati, 101-80. The Cardinals fell six spots to ninth in the latest poll.
Kentucky received the remaining two first-place votes and has 746 points. The Wildcats extended their winning streak to 16 games, the longest in the nation, with a 70-62 win over Mississippi State on Sunday.
Florida (22-4) dropped to seventh last week, but rose back to fourth with wins over New Orleans and Vanderbilt.
Duke (19-4) also moved up three spots, rising to fifth thanks to triumphs over Maryland and North Carolina State.
Texas (18-5) fell one spot to sixth this week and is followed by Kansas (20-6), Pittsburgh (19-4), Louisville and Notre Dame (21-5).
Marquette (20-4) is 11th and is followed by Wake Forest (19-4), Xavier (20-4), Maryland (17-7), Syracuse (19-4), Illinois (18-5), Oklahoma State (20-5), Creighton (24-3), Stanford (21-6) and Mississippi State (17-6).
California (19-5), Georgia (16-7), Utah (20-4), Connecticut (17-6) and Dayton (19-5) complete the poll. Utah and Dayton are new to the poll this week while Missouri and Purdue dropped out.
Strong wins add to America's Cup delay
AUCKLAND, New Zealand, Feb. 24 (UPI) -- Expected gale-force winds forced the postponement of racing in the America's Cup for the fifth time on Tuesday.
That stretched delays since the last race out to more than a week.
Swiss challengers Alinghi lead Cup holders Team New Zealand 3-0 in the best-of-nine series and are firm favorites to become the first European team to win world sport's oldest trophy.
No team has ever come back from a 3-0 deficit to win the America's Cup.
Light and unpredictable winds forced race officials to postpone the fourth race four times since last Thursday. Race three was sailed on Feb. 18.
That long stretch of calm came before storms which are expected in the Hauraki Gulf off Auckland, New Zealand's largest city, for at least the next three days.
Neither team left their compounds on Auckland's waterfront, with winds expected to gust over 40 knots by the scheduled start time at 1.15 p.m. (0015 GMT) on Tuesday.
Winds were expected to increase even further on Wednesday.
NBA fines Van Exel $20,000
NEW YORK, Feb. 24 (UPI) -- The NBA fined Dallas guard Nick Van Exel $20,000 Monday for verbally abusing game officials.
The incident occurred at the end of the Mavericks' victory over the Washington Wizards on Sunday.
The incident took place at the conclusion of Dallas' sixth consecutive victory, a 106-101 overtime triumph in which Van Exel was held to 11 points on 4-of-12 shooting.
The veteran guard is averaging just under eight points per game during the winning streak and 11.7 for the season, almost four points off his career average.
The hefty fine comes after NBA commissioner David Stern promised to crack down more on disciplinary issues. Stern made the comments during his "State of the Game" address on All-Star Weekend.
The Mavericks (44-12), who own the best record in the NBA, are enjoying their longest winning streak since opening the season with 14 straight wins.
Glenn repotedly being shopped by Packers
INDIANAPOLIS, Feb. 24 (UPI) -- It looks like the days of Terry Glenn as the No. 1 wide receiver of the Green Bay Packers are about to end.
The Green Bay Press-Gazette is reporting that the Packers quietly are seeking to trade the former Ohio State star, who was third on the team in receptions last season with 56, gaining 817 yards.
The paper said his agent, Jimmy Gould, has been given permission to speak to other teams about his client, and that any contract he gets likely would be a new one.
By Friday, Glenn is due a roster bonus of $500,000. Mark Hatley, the team's Vice President of Football Operations, feels Glenn will be back.
"I'd be surprised if the Packers didn't pay the bonus," Hatley told the paper.
The paper said it appears the Packers think two younger receivers, Robert Ferguson and Javon Walker, are ready to play bigger roles next season. In 2002, Donald Driver was the Packers' primary receiving threat and had 70 receptions.
Green Bay also made heavy use of running back Ahman Green, who was second on the team with 57 catches.
The Press-Gazette noted that, if the Packers trade or cut Glenn, 28, before paying the bonus, they'll have a net salary-cap savings of $1.4 million. They'll save $2 million in roster bonus and base salary, but $600,000 in accelerated prorated signing bonuses will count against this year's cap.
The 5-11, 195-pounder, who was a No. 1 draft pick by the Patriots, has had a reputation of being a malcontent while in the NFL. He was acquired by Green Bay in a trade with New England in 2001.
In his seven-year career with the Packers and Patriots, he has 385 catches for 5,486 yards and 24 touchdowns. He had two scoring receptions last season.
He currently is under contract until 2006.
Jackson having kidney stone removed
LOS ANGELES, Feb. 24 (UPI) -- Los Angeles Lakers Coach Phil Jackson was scheduled to have a kidney stone removed Monday.
When a team official made the announcement Sunday night, Jackson was not expected to miss a game.
The procedure was to be performed by Dr. Lawrence Paletz, a urologist at Centinela Hospital Medical Center in Inglewood, Calif.
Jackson will miss practice Monday, but hopes to return for Tuesday's game against the crosstown rival Los Angeles Clippers.
Jackson, 57, is in his fourth season as Lakers' coach. He owns the highest winning percentage in NBA coaching history at .723, and is tied with Red Auerbach with nine NBA championships.
The Lakers have won four straight to climb a season-high five games over .500 at 30-25. They are in seventh place in the Western Conference, one-half game ahead of Phoenix and three games behind Utah.
McMurray wins Rockingham 200
ROCKINGHAM, N.C., Feb. 24 (UPI) -- Jamie McMurray waited two extra days before showing his dominance Monday by winning the rescheduled Rockingham 200 NASCAR Busch Series race.
The race had been rained out on Saturday.
He led 192 of the 197 laps in the race to win for the second-straight Busch Series race at North Carolina Speedway.
The 192 laps led set a Busch series record at this track. McMurray also won at Rockingham last fall.
Monday's win was his third career Busch Series win with two of those coming at the 1.017-mile track located in the Sand Hills region of the Tar Heel state.
"This was an awesome race car," McMurray said. "I have to thank team owner James Finch for hiring me for this ride. We made an adjustment on that final pit stop and nobody could catch me after that."
McMurray is a rookie in the NASCAR Winston Cup series. He finished fifth in Sunday's Subway 400.
He took the lead on the opening lap when he blew past pole-sitter David Green and never really had to look back.
He led the first 118 laps before the race was red-flagged on that lap following a crash in the first turn involving Shane Hmiel and Mike Wallace. Neither driver agreed on the cause of the crash, and had to be separated by Busch Series officials and crew members.
"I got hit in the right-rear corner and pushed up into Mike Wallace," Hmiel said. "I wasn't too happy about it and neither was he."
Replays showed that Larry Gunselman's car clipped Hmiel's after Hmiel tried to clear him following a pass.
After the delay to dry off the track with jet-dryers to blow off the fire extinguisher foam, oil, fluid, and rubber, the race resumed with McMurray once again leading the way, followed by David Green, Scott Wimmer, and Michael Waltrip.
Waltrip moved up through the field and was in second place, ready to challenge McMurray for the lead. With 34 laps to go, Waltrip passed McMurray for the lead, just seconds before a yellow caution flag waved. McMurray had led the first 164 laps.
Princeton loses Gloger to academics
PRINCETON, N.J., Feb. 24 (UPI) -- Princeton forward Spencer Gloger has been lost to the men's basketball team for the balance of the season because of academics.
Gloger, 6-7, a native of Los Angeles, was the Tigers' leading scorer and rebounder with per game averages of 15.7 points and 5.7 boards, and also had a team-high 44 three-pointers.
"I'm disappointed that I won't be able to help my teammates for the rest of this season," Gloger, 22, said in a prepared statement. "I'll be pulling for them."
If he re-enrolls at Princeton, he would be eligible to play again after the spring 2004 semester begins.
Collegiately, Gloger has had a wild ride.
He originally committed to attend Princeton out of Santa Margarita High School in California1999 only to change his mind and accept a scholarship to UCLA. Then in August, he changed his mind again and decided to attend Princeton.
He started as a freshman for former Coach Bill Carmody, and earned All-Ivy League honorable-mention honors while averaging 12.0 points and setting a school freshman record with 65 three-pointers.
After a tumultuous 2001 for Princeton, when assistant coach Joe Scott left for Air Force, Carmody left for Northwestern, and star center Chris Young sacrificed his final two years of eligibility to sign a baseball contract with the Pittsburgh Pirates, Gloger decided the Tigers weren't NCAA Tournament material and transferred to UCLA just after the school year began.
Ironically, as he spent a redshirt season in the UCLA program, Princeton won the Ivy League title and went to the NCAA Tournament. After deciding he missed Princeton, Gloger transferred back in September 2001.
Because he had been on scholarship as a member of the UCLA program, he had to sit out another season, which sacrificed his sophomore year of eligibility at Princeton.
Princeton (13-9, 7-2 Ivy League) won twice last weekend, beating Dartmouth, 70-60, and Harvard, 67-66,.
The Tigers play at Yale on Friday, and at Brown on Saturday.
Valdez quits Texas Tech basketball
LUBBOCK, Texas, Feb. 24 (UPI) -- Forward Nick Valdez has decided not to rejoin the men's basketball team at Texas Tech and that means his college career is over.
Valdez, a 6-6 senior, had been suspended for the Red Raiders' game at Iowa State recently for a team rules violation. Turns out that violation was for changing his room assignment before a recent game without staff approval.
Coach Bob Knight told Valdez and guard Andre Emmett, who was suspended before the Texas game, that their teammates would have to vote on whether the pair would be allowed back to the squad. Both players were voted back pending Knight's conditions, although the vote for Valdez unanimous.
According to a statement by the school, the stipulations included fulfilling all his academic responsibilities and following the established team policies. He also would run sprints for the Iowa State incident and for other violations of team policies. If there were any further incidents, which Knight called "irresponsible behavior," he then would be dismissed from the team.
After hearing that, Valdez answered, "I'm going to leave."
Several media sources claimed Valdez' father, Joe, was irate that his son had been disciplined by Knight for the Texas incident because both he and Emmett overslept, which caused them to miss a morning shoot-around.
Knight admitted on his weekly radio show last week that Valdez had been a problem all season.
"I think we have had a whole series of irresponsible things with Valdez in the past," Knight said on Friday. "We've had very little with Emmett. Emmett has been an excellent student. He's been good academically. There have been no problems whatsoever off the court with Emmett. It's simply not the case with the other guy. Valdez has a long history of things."
Valdez' father issued an apology after learning the facts about the suspension, but that did not change his son's mind.
"(Valdez and Emmett) missed a walkthrough prior to practice when (the practice) was about 15 minutes away, walking distance, from the hotel where we stayed," Knight said. "I think it's inexcusable, and if anybody else differs with me on that, I'm sorry. But that's really not their prerogative to make that decision in this case. It's mine."
Injury-plagued Karpotsev out again
CHICAGO, Feb. 24 (UPI) -- Defenseman Alexander Karpovtsev of the Chicago Blackhawks will miss the next four to six weeks with a fractured cheekbone and a cracked orbital bone.
He already missed more than five weeks earlier this season with a broken ankle.
Karpovtsev suffered the injury in Thursday's 2-0 loss to Phoenix, when was hit in the face with a deflected shot by Coyotes defenseman Danny Markov. He initially was diagnosed with a fractured cheekbone, and another exam this weekend revealed the cracked orbital bone.
Karpotsev, considered one of the better shot-blocking defensemen in the NHL, fractured his right ankle in November when he was hit with a shot by Brett Hull of Detroit.
The native of Moscow has one goal and nine assists in 33 games this season. He missed 16 games in last season with a series of injuries, but made it back for the playoffs.
The Blackhawks already are without veteran defenseman Phil Housley, who broke his right foot last week.
Chicago is ninth in the Western Conference, six points out of the eighth and final playoff spot.