UPI NewsTrack Sports

March 9, 2004 at 12:00 AM
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Mashburn out three weeks with knee problem

NEW ORLEANS, March 9 (UPI) -- The New Orleans Hornets announced Monday that forward Jamal Mashburn is out at least three weeks due to irritation in the knee.

Mashburn missed the first 44 games this season following arthroscopic surgery on his right knee

Mashburn is averaging 20.8 points and 6.2 rebounds in 19 games.

He sat out the fourth quarter of Sunday's loss at Toronto after he had just nine points on 3-of-14 shooting.

After the game, Mashburn complained about sharp pain. Team physician Gregor Hoffman confirmed a diagnosis of "patella femoral irritation."

Mashburn averaged 21.6 points and shot 42 percent last season, when he was named to his first All-Star team.

Houston coach McCallum re-assigned

HOUSTON, March 9 (UPI) -- Houston men's basketball coach Ray McCallum was re-assigned to a position in fund raising for the athletic department on Monday.

McCallum, who came to Houston after a successful tenure at Ball State, compiled a 44-73 record in four years with the Cougars. This season, Houston was 9-18.

"We appreciate what Ray has contributed to our program during the last four years, but the results have not been strong enough," Athletic Director Dave Maggard said. "After four years, my expectation was that we would be farther along. We can't afford to be near the bottom of Conference USA."

McCallum was the second straight failed hire for Houston, which went 19-39 under former player Clyde Drexler before he resigned after the 1999-2000 season.

Saint Joseph's takes over No. 1

MCLEAN, Va., March 9 (UPI) -- Unbeaten St. Joseph's took over the No. 1 ranking for the first time ever Monday in the latest USA college basketball coaches' poll.

The Hawks (27-0) became the first team in 13 years to complete an unbeaten regular season with an 82-50 rout of St. Bonaventure last Tuesday and moved into the top spot when Stanford (26-1) faltered, 75-62, in Washington on Saturday.

Saint Joseph's needs three wins in the Atlantic 10 tournament to become the first team since Nevada-Las Vegas in 1991 to enter the NCAA tournament without a defeat.

Gonzaga (26-2) and Duke (25-4) switched places at No. 3 and No. 4.

Mississippi State (25-2), Pittsburgh (27-3), Oklahoma State (24-3) remained at No. 5-7, and Kentucky (23-4) flip-flopped with Connecticut (24-6) at eighth and ninth, respectively. Wisconsin (21-6) completes the top 10.

Ted Williams son John Henry dies at 35

LOS ANGELES, March 9 (UPI) -- John Henry Williams, son of the late Boston Red Sox star Ted Williams, died Sunday in California.

The Red Sox issued a statement confirming the death of the son, who was 35, and who had led efforts to have his famous father's body preserved at a cryonics lab in Scottsdale, Ariz., setting off a family legal battle.

"On behalf of all of us with the Boston Red Sox, we extend our condolences to the John Henry Williams family," the team statement said. "Perhaps no person meant more to the history of the Boston Red Sox than did his father."

John Henry Williams, who played briefly in the minor leagues, was diagnosed with a form of leukemia last fall. He had been undergoing chemotherapy.

"It is particularly sad that leukemia claimed his life, for his father was a pioneer in the development of the Jimmy Fund, which has made such remarkable progress in the fight against cancer," the Red Sox statement said.

Ted Williams, one of baseball's legendary sluggers, died in 2002. A family dispute followed after his son had the body taken to the cryonics lab. The family settled the matter last year.

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