Colts' coach out with leukemia
INDIANAPOLIS, Oct. 1 (UPI) -- Indianapolis Colts General Manager Ryan Grigson said Monday he expects Coach Chuck Pagano to return to work after receiving treatment for leukemia.
"That same fighting spirit that Chuck has and he's instilled in this team, in this organization, is the same spirit that he's going to carry through this fight, and put him back on that field that he loves and what he was born to do -- that's to coach football and to bring passion and love of the game to those players, and leadership and ultimately wins," Grigson said in a release on the team's website.
The 52-year-old first-year head coach will be hospitalized for about six weeks of treatment for acute promyelocytic leukemia, The Indianapolis Star reported. Pagano had been feeling fatigued in recent weeks and underwent blood tests during the team's bye week, the newspaper said.
"In just talking with his wife, Tina, last night, we feel confident in that foundation that Chuck has laid with these players, and they know how much that he cares about him. That's real. You can't fake that stuff," Grigson said.
Players and the coaching staff were told of the diagnosis Monday morning. Offensive Coordinator Bruce Arians will serve as interim head coach while Pagano is out.
'Bama No. 1 and Notre Dame back in Top 10
MCLEAN, Va., Oct. 1 (UPI) -- Alabama remains No. 1 for a fifth consecutive week and Notre Dame enters the Top 10 of the latest USA Today Coaches football poll.
Alabama (5-0) heads into an off week losing one point in the rankings. The Crimson Tide are three points shy of being a unanimous No. 1. No. 2 Oregon (4-0) picked up additional support and closed the gap with Alabama.
The first eight in the poll remain the same as last week but Stanford's loss to Washington Thursday drops the Cardinal nine places to No. 18. That led to a series of teams creeping up one place each.
Louisiana State (5-0) is No. 3 followed by fourth-ranked Florida State (5-0) and Georgia (5-0). South Carolina (5-0) comes in at No. 6 with West Virginia (4-0) seventh and Kansas State (4-0) eighth.
Texas (4-0) takes over the No. 9 spot and Notre Dame (4-0) is 10th.
Florida (4-0) is voted to the No. 11 position and Southern California (3-1) is 12th while Texas Christian (4-0) is 13th, Oklahoma (2-1) 14th and Clemson (4-1) is No. 15.
Louisville (5-0) is 16th and Oregon State (3-0), one of the big movers up this week, is 17th after a No. 21 ranking last week. Stanford (3-1) is 18th while Mississippi State (4-0) and Nebraska (4-1) are again 19th and 20th, respectively.
Rutgers (4-0) matches Oregon's four-spot gain and is 21st followed by four teams that weren't ranked a week ago. Northwestern (5-0) is 22nd and Cincinnati (3-0) takes the 23rd spot followed by No. 24 Texas Tech (4-0) and 25th-ranked Boise State (3-1).
Michigan State, Oklahoma State, Wisconsin, Baylor and Virginia Tech drop out of the Top 25 this week.
Key games this week find Georgia at South Carolina while West Virginia visits Texas and Louisiana State plays at Florida. Also, Oklahoma goes to Texas Tech.
2011 titlist Berdych wins at Japan Open
TOKYO, Oct. 1 (UPI) -- Second-seeded Tomas Berdych opened defense of his Japan Open title with a straight-set win Monday.
Berdych, seeded second this year, defeated Benoit Paire 6-1, 7-6 (8-6). Berdych won 55 percent of the points and had two breaks off Paire's serve in the first set. He overcame his only lost service game of the match in taking the tiebreaker in the second.
Berdych was good on 58 percent of his first serves and won the points in 38 of those 46 situations.
Seventh-seeded Stanislas Wawrinka edged past wild-card entrant Hiroki Moriya 7-5, 4-6, 6-4. Wawrinka, even with 10 aces, landed just 48 percent of his first serves but only lost his serve twice. He had five breaks against Moriya.
Lukas Lacko routed Albert Ramos 6-0, 6-2, winning more than two-thirds of the points in the match, and Viktor Troicki beat Robin Haase 6-2, 6-3, losing 13 points over nine service games.
Lacko will play either top-seeded Andy Murray or Gael Monfils in the second round.
Jets' Santonio Holmes out with foot injury
FLORHAM PARK, N.J., Oct. 1 (UPI) -- New York Jets leading receiver Santonio Holmes has a left foot injury that could keep him out of the lineup for several weeks, the NFL team said Monday.
Holmes was injured in the fourth quarter of the Jets' 34-0 loss to San Francisco. X-rays were negative and additional tests were ordered.
"I'm not sure how many weeks he's going to be out," Jets Coach Rex Ryan said.
"If it's muscle it could heal much quicker, if it's something else -- ligaments -- then it would take much longer. But it's good news that the X-ray was negative. Obviously, it looks doubtful for this week but further than that, I'm not real sure."
Holmes caught four passes for 29 yards Sunday before the injury. He leads the Jets with 20 receptions for 272 yards and one touchdown.
The Jets, 2-2, play the undefeated Houston Texans next Monday in East Rutherford, N.J.