Thursday, February 22, 2018

NCAA investigators to get new outlook on life on campus

INDIANAPOLIS — The NCAA's interim enforcement chief, Jonathan Duncan, said Friday he wants investigators to spend more time on campuses. Details of the plan are still being worked out.

"One of the things I hear is that our staff sometimes lacks an understanding of what campus life is really like," Duncan said. "So we are piloting a program where our staff will work on campus with athletic directors, compliance staff members and coaches and walk in their shoes so that we have a true understanding of what goes on."

Duncan also said he plans to change the way cases are investigated.

"There are those who believe that our staff members could benefit from better training in investigative techniques and interviewing techniques," Duncan said. "We are going to provide that training so that a good investigation will be done timely and professionally; though I'm not suggesting that doesn't happen now."

The changes are part of Duncan's plan to rebuild the enforcement staff's reputation. In January, the NCAA announced an enforcement official ignored its policies to improperly collect evidence against Miami.

"Certainly, it's been a difficult time in enforcement," he said. "They are tough, hard-working, good people. But they are human. I think morale is good, and I think it will continue to improve."

TCU coach downplays comment

FORT WORTH, Texas — TCU coach Gary Patterson tried to deflate any controversy created by his comments about LSU, his team's first opponent. Wednesday, he was asked about All-America defensive lineman Devonte Fields, who is suspended for the first two games for undisclosed reasons.

"My whole team would vote Devonte to be back on the team because they all want to win," Patterson said. "That doesn't teach life lessons."

The comments came two days after LSU coach Les Miles reinstated leading rusher Jeremy Hill after a vote by his players. Hill was suspended after an arrest for battery.

"I didn't mention Jeremy Hill. I didn't mention Les Miles," Patterson said. "It was more about Devonte Fields. If they want to make something up so they can get all fired up, (go ahead)."

Vanderbilt: Four former players — safety Cory Batey, defensive back Brandon Banks, receiver Jaborian McKenzie and tight end Brandon Vandenburg — were indicted on five counts of aggravated rape of an unconscious student at a campus dorm. Police alleged the incident took place June 23. On June 29, the school dismissed the players, all of whom redshirted last season, from the team and barred them from campus. Police said Batey was in custody on $350,000 bond and arrangements were being made for the other three to be taken into custody.

Wake Forest: Josh Harris, the school's leading rusher two of the past three seasons, was cleared to play. Last week, the school declared him out for undisclosed reasons and sought a waiver from the NCAA to restore his eligibility.


Boys basketball: Jesuit ekes out win

TAMPA — The Jesuit boys basketball team could be forgiven for looking past Lake Wales. The Highlanders entered the Class 6A region quarterfinal with a 13-12 record, while the Tigers had their sights on another squad — Sarasota B...
Updated: 4 minutes ago
Winter Olympics: Russian curler loses medal over doping

Winter Olympics: Russian curler loses medal over doping

GANGNEUNG, South Korea — Russian curler Alexander Krushelnitsky has been stripped of his bronze medal after admitting to a doping violation at the Olympics. Krushelnitsky tested positive for meldonium, which is believed to help blood circulation, aft...
Updated: 9 minutes ago

Boys basketball: Alonso stymied in region opener

TAMPA — Alonso made history this year. Orlando Dr. Phillips had history on its side, too.The Ravens, who won their first district championship, had their dream season end Thursday in a 68-45 defeat to the Panthers in a Class 9A region quarterfi...
Updated: 16 minutes ago
Winter Olympics: U.S. men on verge of first curling gold

Winter Olympics: U.S. men on verge of first curling gold

GANGNEUNG, South Korea — After he had a disastrous showing at the 2014 Olympics, John Shuster received an email that informed him that he had been dropped from the USA Curling’s high-performance program. In fairness, his play had been poor at the Gam...
Updated: 19 minutes ago

Boys basketball: With options aplenty, Hillsborough rolls

TAMPA — Inside. Outside.Inside. Outside.Time and time again, the Hillsborough boys basketball team repeated the shot pattern on offense in the first half.Land O'Lakes' zone defense withstood the dual threat for the game's first few minutes...
Updated: 21 minutes ago

Boys basketball: Springstead settles down in second half

SPRING HILL — It was a slow start for Springstead, but with a home playoff game for the first time since the school's state runnerup run in 2009, the Eagles turned momentum and kept it.Springstead downed King 71-44 on Thursday night in the Clas...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Bucs QB Jameis Winston uninjured in car accident

Bucs QB Jameis Winston uninjured in car accident

Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston was involved in a car accident last week but escaped without injury, according to a traffic citation.Winston, 24, was driving on the Veterans Expressway near Waters Avenue in Tampa on Feb. 13 when his Ford truck rear-e...
Updated: 1 hour ago

Captain’s Corner: Rising temperatures fire up the bite

With no cold fronts rolling into the bay area soon, it also means water temperatures are on the rise to the mid 70s. That has the bite fired up inshore and nearshore. Snook fishing is on fire with these warmer temperatures at night. We’ve been findin...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Brent Honeywell injury could be worst Rays news yet

Brent Honeywell injury could be worst Rays news yet

PORT CHARLOTTE – It may have seemed that things couldn't get worse for the Rays after an opening week of spring training that included the dumping of two veterans to harshly negative reviews including from their own players, the trade of the te...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Lightning nearing end of road-heavy stretch

Lightning nearing end of road-heavy stretch

OTTAWA – The last time the Lightning played in Ottawa, back in early January, it was one of the team's worst games of the season.Coach Jon Cooper delivered a damning opening statement in his post-game press conference – saying "entitlemen...
Updated: 3 hours ago