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UPI NewsTrack Sports

Jan. 28, 2013 at 5:15 PM   |   Comments

Kansas tops coaches' poll

MCLEAN, Va., Jan. 28 (UPI) -- Kansas replaced Duke as the No. 1-ranked team in the USA Today Coaches' poll Monday, with Michigan a very close second.

Last week was another tough one for ranked teams, with 14 of the Top 25 falling at least once and four -- including former No. 1 Louisville -- losing twice. One of those victims was Duke, which was routed 90-63 at Miami (Fla.) two days after returning to the top spot last Monday.

That opened the way for Kansas (18-1) to move atop the poll. The Jayhawks are listed first on 16 of the 31 ballots and have a total of 760 poll points. Michigan (19-1) pulls in 14 first-place mentions and 757 points.

With upsets coming every day ranked teams played last week, there was much movement in the Top 25. Six teams improve their positions at least five spots, including No. 3 Indiana (18-2), which was eighth last week. Mississippi is up eight places to No. 16 and Oregon and Wichita State are both up seven. Also, Miami, unranked a week ago, is 15th.

Going the other way, five teams fall at least four spots, with Duke (17-2) going from first to fifth while Minnesota plummets 10 places to 24th, Louisville and Kansas State both drop eight places and Creighton is off five. That doesn't include Virginia Commonwealth, which was 16th last week and drops from the rankings this week.

Florida (16-2) takes the final first-place vote and is up three places, coming between Indiana and Duke in fourth.

Syracuse (18-2) is voted sixth, with Gonzaga (19-2) up to seventh and Arizona (17-2) in eighth. Michigan State (17-4) comes in ninth and Butler (17-3) completes the Top 10.

Ohio State (18-2) is 11th followed by Oregon (18-2) and Louisville (16-4) in 12th and 13th, respectively. Big upward movers Wichita State (19-2) and Miami (15-3) are 14th and 15th.

Mississippi (17-2) is No. 16 ahead of No. 16 Creighton (18-3) and 17th-ranked Missouri (15-4). North Carolina State (16-4) is 19th before No. 20 San Diego State (16-4).

Kansas State (15-4) sits in the 21st spot with New Mexico (17-3) at 22nd while, in order, Cincinnati (16-4), Minnesota (15-5) and Marquette (14-4) fill out the rankings.

Notre Dame joined Virginia Commonwealth in falling out of the rankings this week.MLB seeks DEA help in doping investigation

MIAMI, Jan. 28 (UPI) -- Major League Baseball is trying to determine if southern Florida is a source of banned performance-enhancing drugs, sources told the South Florida Sun Sentinel.

MLB officials asked federal drug agents for help, the newspaper reported Sunday, quoting two sources.

Many baseball players who recently flunked drug tests live or train southern Florida or travel there for treatment, the sources said.

MLB sent investigators to South Florida to determine the source of drugs and passed the information gathered to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration because the league does not have subpoena powers, the report said.

Numerous wellness and anti-aging clinics are in the region. Anti-aging treatments include testosterone and human growth treatment, two types of performance-enhancing drugs.

Baseball officials believe an organized ring could be involved in distributing testosterone or other steroidal drugs to players, the report said.

It wasn't clear how far the DEA is into the investigation. A spokesman for the agency's Miami field office declined to comment.


Ferrer passes Nadal in tennis rankings

LONDON, Jan. 28 (UPI) -- Rafael Nadal slips to No. 5 in the world rankings as of Monday, the first time in nearly eight years he's been ranked out of the Top 4.

Nadal has been sidelined since a second-round loss at Wimbledon because of a knee injury. He was scheduled to return from that late last year but a stomach virus then kept him off the court and forced him to miss the Australian Open.

He was the 2012 Australian Open runner-up, picking up 1,200 rankings points but those evaporated when the 2013 Australian Open ended.

As a result he has 5,400 ranking points and was passed by David Ferrer for No. 4 in the rankings. Nadal hasn't been this low in the rankings since May 23, 2005, just before he won his first French Open title.

Ferrer's move to fourth allows him to match his previous career high.

Novak Djokovic, who picked up his third consecutive Australian Open title Sunday, has 12,920 points and is No. 1 in the world. He's held that spot for the last 13 weeks and 66 weeks overall. He's six weeks short of Stefan Edberg, whose 72 weeks atop the rankings is 10th most all-time.

Roger Federer, who appeared in his 10th consecutive Australian Open semifinal last week, remains second with 10,265 points while Andy Murray, the runner-up to Djokovic for the second time in three years, is No. 3 with 8,480 points. Ferrer has 6,865.

Tomas Berdych remains sixth with 4,680 points followed by No. 7 Juan Martin del Potro (4,210) and eighth-ranked Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (3,555). No. 9 Janko Tipsarevic (3,180) and 10th-ranked Richard Gasquet (2,720) complete the Top 10.


Erakovic opens Pattaya Open with upset

PATTAYA, Thailand, Jan. 28 (UPI) -- Marina Erakovic ousted third-seeded Hsieh Su-Wei in one of Monday's opening-day matches at the PTT Pattaya Open tennis tournament in Thailand.

Erakovic came away a 6-2, 6-2 winner over Hsieh in just more than an hour. She won 60 percent of the points in the match, including more than half off Hsieh's serve.

Erakovic ended up with five breaks in eight receiving games and saved four of the five break points she faced. She was particularly successful on her own first serve, winning 27-of-33 points when she got her first serve in.

Erakovic will go against local favorite and wild-card entrant Varatchaya Wongteanchai in the second round. Wongteanchai beat Annika Beck 6-3, 6-3 Monday by converting half of her 12 break-point opportunities. She won 59 percent of the points in the match.

Also Monday, Mathilde Johansson got by Chang Kai-Chen 6-4, 6-3 behind five breaks and Alexandra Panova was up 7-6 (8-6), 3-2 when Irina-Camelia Begu retired.

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