Sports television pioneer Roone Arledge dies
NEW YORK, Dec. 6 (UPI) -- Roone Arledge, who introduced the public to Howard Cosell, instant replay, Lambchop and 20/20, died Thursday in New York of complications from cancer.
He was 71.
Arledge is considered the leading pioneer in sports television and network news, creating ABC's Wide World of Sports, Monday Night Football, World News Tonight, Nightline and 20/20 in his 30-plus years with the network.
As president of ABC Sports, Arledge created a place in prime time for the NFL, where it has staged since the inception of Monday Night Football in 1969. MNF gained instant popularity with the caustic Cosell at the microphone.
Monday Night Football also was a forum for Arledge to introduce instant replays, slow motion and advanced graphics, which have became a staple in sports broadcasting.
The Wide World of Sports' intro will forever be embedded in the minds of TV viewers that grew up in the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s, with ski jumper Vinko Bogataj's horrific fall accompanying Jim McKay's chilling words "the thrill of victory and agony of defeat."
Arledge's accomplishments went well past sports. He won his first of 36 Emmy Awards for producing a puppet show with Shari Lewis and her puppet, Lambchop.
In 1977, Arledge became the president of ABC News, producing World News Tonight, Nightline, 20/20, PrimeTime LIVE and This Week with David Brinkely.
Texas A&M ready to hire Franchione
COLLEGE STATION, Texas, Dec. 6 (UPI) -- Texas A&M University scheduled a news conference for 9:30 a.m. Friday amid reports that Dennis Franchione will leave Alabama after just two years and take over as the Aggies head football coach.
According to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Franchione and Texas A&M officials have agreed to terms on a multi-year contract.
Franchione met with Texas A&M Athletic Director Bill Byrne Thursday, one day after receiving permission from Alabama officials to do so.
Byrne has been on the job for only two days after leaving Nebraska on Tuesday to fill the void left by the resignation of Wally Groff.
Franchione, 51, would take over for R.C. Slocum, the winningest football coach in Aggies history who was fired Monday after 14 years at the school. Over the past four seasons, Texas A&M is 29-20. The Aggies have a 6-6 record this year.
Glavine headed to Mets
NEW YORK, Dec. 6 (UPI) -- The New York Mets announced Thursday night star pitcher Tom Glavine had agreed to contract terms and that he would be signed once he passes a physical on Monday.
Major League Baseball's web site said the deal is for three years and $34 million with a fourth-year option.
Glavine, who turns 36 in March, also was being wooed by the Philadelphia Phillies and Atlanta Braves, with whom he spent his first 16 seasons.
Instead, he joins the National League East rival Mets, who will insert the two-time Cy Young Award winner as the ace of their rotation. New York owner Fred Wilpon personally courted Glavine, an eight-time All-Star and five-time 20-game winner.
Glavine was 18-11 with a 2.96 ERA in 36 starts last season. But he struggled after the All-Star break at 7-7 with a 3.93 ERA and surrendered 13 runs and 17 hits over 7 2/3 innings in two starts in the NL Division Series against San Francisco.
While Glavine has not had a losing season since 1990, the fourth year of the contract was the sticking point. He has pitched at least 219 innings in each of the last seven years and will be 40 by the time the option kicks in.
Robinson carries Hawks past Bucks
ATLANTA, Dec. 6 (UPI) -- Glenn Robinson led a balanced attack with 23 points Thursday night as the Atlanta Hawks pulled away from Ray Allen and the Milwaukee Bucks, 98-80.
Robinson was traded to Atlanta last summer after spending his first eight seasons in Milwaukee. He spent the offseason trading insults with Allen, who incited the war of words with comments that Robinson was selfish. Robinson called Allen a coward.
Jason Terry contributed 19 points and 12 assists and Theo Ratliff had 13 points and 15 rebounds for the Hawks, who shot 51 percent and had all five starters score in double figures.
Tim Thomas scored 17 points and Allen 16 for Milwaukee, which has five of seven and fell to 2-8 on the road.
Penalty shot in OT wins it for Flyers
PHILADELPHIA, Dec. 6 (UPI) -- Michal Handzus converted a controversial penalty shot with 37 seconds left in overtime Thursday night, allowing the Philadelphia Flyers to end a six-game home winless streak with a 3-2 victory over the New York Rangers.
Handzus broke down the left side but was only a stride ahead of defenseman Tom Poti when he was hooked to the ice. Referee Kevin Pollock signaled a penalty shot and Handzus made no mistake, freezing Dan Blackburn with a head fake before putting a backhander over the goaltender's left pad for his eighth goal.
It was just the second successful penalty shot in overtime in NHL history. Nashville's David Legwand also beat the Rangers with a penalty shot on Dec. 23, 2000.
Mark Recchi had a goal and an assist for Philadelphia, which was 0-3-3 at the First Union Center since Nov. 2.
Other NHL results: Boston 4, Atlanta 3 in overtime; Tampa Bay 3, Edmonton 2; Detroit 5, Phoenix 3; St. Louis 2, Ottawa 2; Minnesota 1, Calgary 1.
Furyk leads elite field
THOUSAND OAKS, Calif., Dec. 6 (UPI) -- Jim Furyk got off to a quick start Thursday and never let up, tying the tournament record with an 8-under-par 64 for a one-shot lead after one round of the Target World Challenge.
Furyk was 4-under after collecting an eagle and two birdies on the first four holes.
Nick Price of Zimbabwe and Padraig Harrington of Ireland were tied for second after opening-round 65s, one shot better than Davis Love III. Defending champion and tournament host Tiger Woods parred just two of the first 11 holes en route to a 4-under 68 and a share of eighth place in a field of 16.
Twelve players in the elite field were under par at the Sherwood Country Club. Germany's Bernhard Langer, recently enshrined in the World Golf Hall of Fame, managed an even-par 72. PGA Championship winner Rich Beem carded a 74, Tour Championship winner Vijay Singh of Fiji signed for a 75 and Bob Estes struggled to a 76.
Storm affects college basketball
MISSOULA, Mont., Dec. 6 (UPI) -- No. 25 Gonzaga won the only college basketball game involving a top 25 team Thursday night while on the other side of the country, bad weather disrupted the schedule.
Gonzaga rallied to defeat Montana, 75-64, to improve to 4-2.
Five games, however, were postponed or canceled due to wintery weather. Chief among them was St. Peter's scheduled game at Seton Hall.
NHL clears Fluery's return
CHICAGO, Dec. 6 (UPI) -- Chicago Blackhawks right wing Theo Fleury, who was suspended two months ago for violating the NHL's substance abuse aftercare program, was cleared by the league to return Thursday.
Suspended indefinitely on Oct. 8, Fleury is expected to make his season debut on Friday, when the Blackhawks host the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim at the United Center.
"Fleury has participated fully and has been cooperative in his intensive treatment program," the league said in a joint statement with the NHL Players Association.
The fiery 34-year-old received clearance to practice with the team on Nov. 25. He signed a two-year, $8.5 million contract with Chicago last August after three eventful seasons with the New York Rangers but missed practice without permission on Oct. 2, telling team officials he was with his father, who has prostate cancer.
Fleury recorded his 400th goal, 600th assist and 1,000th point and played his 1,000th game during his stint with New York. But he also voluntarily checked himself into the NHL's substance abuse program on Feb. 28, 2001 and missed the final 20 games of the 2000-01 season.
Tennessee accepts Peach Bowl bid
ATLANTA, Dec. 6 (UPI) -- Officials of the Peach Bowl Thursday announced that Tennessee has been matched against Maryland for the New Year's Eve contest at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta.
The Volunteers, who had a disappointing and injury-filled season but won their last three games, will be making their 14th straight bowl appearance.
The Vols were 8-4 this season, and 5-3 in the SEC East. They finished the campaign ranked No. 25 in the Bowl Championship Series.
Brack returns to IRL
INDIANAPOLIS, Dec. 6 (UPI) -- Former Indy Racing League champion Kenny Brack of Sweden will return to the Indy Racing League in 2003 with Team Rahal in a partnership with Honda Performance Development, Inc.
Brack, who won the IRL title in 1998 and the 1999 Indianapolis 500, will drive a single-car entry for owner Bobby Rahal, for whom he drove before trying his luck in CART.
The 36-year-old Swede also drove for Team Rahal in the CART series during the 2000-01 seasons. He recorded four victories, including this past year's final race in Mexico, 11 top-three finishes and 24 top-10s in that period.
NFL fines Steve Herndon
NEW YORK, Dec. 6 (UPI) -- The NFL fined Denver Broncos guard Steve Herndon one game's pay Thursday for his illegal block from behind on San Diego Chargers defensive tackle Jamal Williams last Sunday.
Herndon will forfeit $17,647 of his $300,000 salary after falling on the back of Williams' left ankle as the two ran downfield following a screen pass to running back Clinton Portis.
Williams suffered a dislocated ankle, which will force him to miss the rest of the season. He had surgery Monday.
Herndon, a first-year guard, and Broncos coach Mike Shanahan have apologized for the hit.
Dave Andreychuk goes on injured list
TAMPA, Fla., Dec. 6 (UPI) -- Tampa Bay Lightning veteran left wing Dave Andreychuk was placed on injured reserve Thursday with a hairline fracture of his right big toe. He is expected to be sidelined up to six weeks.
Andreychuk, the team captain, has appeared in all 25 games with the Lightning this season, collecting 12 points and 10 penalty minutes. He is third on the team with eight goals.
Earlier this season, the 39-year-old Andreychuk set an NHL record with his 250th career power-play goal and also notched his 600th career goal.