E. Carolina a full member; Tulsa in?
East Carolina will join the soon-to-be-renamed Big East as an all-sports member instead of just football, the school said Wednesday. Meanwhile, the Associated Press reported Tulsa will join the league, and cbssports.com reported the league has a deal with CBS to air men's basketball games.
East Carolina, currently in Conference USA, still will arrive in 2014. It will join USF, UCF, Cincinnati, Connecticut, Houston, Memphis, SMU, Temple and Tulane. Navy joins for football only in 2015. And if Tulsa, currently in C-USA, joins in 2015 as AP reported, the league would have the minimum 12 teams needed to play a title game. Neither the school nor league commented.
The men's basketball deal reportedly is worth $4 million over seven years and gives CBS up to 12 games (conference or nonconference) per season. ESPN recently agreed to a seven-year, $126 million deal for the league's football games.
Sun Belt: Appalachian State, Georgia Southern, Idaho and New Mexico State will join for 2014. Georgia Southern has six I-AA football titles, Appalachian State three. Idaho and New Mexico State are football independents in 2013 after the WAC's collapse.
U.S. tie sets record
The scoreless tie between the United States and Mexico late Tuesday drew about 2.385 million viewers, more than double the record for a World Cup qualifier on ESPN. The Americans (1-1-1), now 0-13-2 in qualifiers in Mexico, earned a point to move into third. Seven games remain. The top three qualify, and the No. 4 faces a play-in. The United States next is at Jamaica on June 7. Mexico (0-0-3) outshot the United States 19-1 and had 15 corner kicks, three in the final two minutes.
Rowdies: MF Kyle Clinton, a Countryside High grad, and D Jordan Gafa signed one-year deals. Both signed tryout deals during the preseason.
Logano, Hamlin text
NASCAR team owner Roger Penske said his driver, Joey Logano, and Denny Hamlin have exchanged text messages since Sunday's last-lap crash at Fontana left Hamlin out six weeks with a broken vertebra. Logano declined to comment while Hamlin said, "It didn't go well. The conversation was both short and unproductive."
Haas keeps on winning
Tommy Haas, 34, who Tuesday became the oldest man to beat a world No. 1 in 30 years when he ousted Novak Djokovic, beat Gilles Simon 6-3, 6-1 in the Sony Open quarters in Key Biscayne. He faces No. 3 David Ferrer, the highest seed left, who defeated Jurgen Melzer 4-6, 6-3, 6-0. Maria Sharapova beat Sara Errani 7-5, 7-5 despite 57 unforced errors (13 double-faults). Next is Jelena Jankovic.
Falcons get Umenyiora
Ex-Giants standout DE Osi Umenyiora agreed to a two-year deal with the Falcons. Umenyiora, 31, replaces the released John Abraham.
Texans: FB Greg Jones signed. The ex-Seminole, 31, spent his first nine seasons with the Jags.
Softball: Kourtney Salvarola, who hit a school-record three homers Sunday, hit two more Wednesday for host USF (25-11, 3-1 Big East) in an 8-2 win over Villanova. She leads the league in homers (10) and RBIs (28). … Briana Little hit a walk-off grand slam in the eighth as UF (32-3) beat FSU (26-11) 7-3 before a school-record 2,443 in Gainesville.
Horses: Itsmyluckyday was made the 2-1 favorite for Saturday's Florida Derby, a Kentucky Derby prep race at Gulfstream Park in Hallandale Beach. … Animal Kingdom, the 2011 Derby winner, drew the No. 12 post among 13 horses for Saturday's $10 million Dubai World Cup in the United Arab Emirates.
Boxing: Hall of Famer Wilfredo Gomez, 56, was hospitalized in Puerto Rico with breathing problems. His prognosis is unknown.