Florida basketball players Merlakia Jones and Andrew DeClercq were chosen as preseason candidates for the 1995 Naismith College Basketball Player of the Year Awards, the Atlanta Tipoff Club announced Tuesday. DeClercq, a senior from Clearwater, helped Florida to its first NCAA Final Four appearance last season, averaging 8.8 points and 7.9 rebounds. Jones, a senior from Montgomery, Ala., led the Gators to an NCAA Tournament appearance and averaged 18.6 points and 10.1 rebounds.
COLLEGES: The Knight Commission _ a panel of business and education leaders _ called on college presidents to reaffirm their support for higher academic standards.
GOLF: The GTE Suncoast Classic announced a purse increase to $750,000 for the 1995 Senior PGA Tour event at the TPC of Tampa Bay at Cheval. The $50,000 increase was made possible because of a contribution by Cadillac. Colin Montgomerie has become the first golfer since 1980 to win the European PGA Tour money title two years in a row, finishing with $964,671. A new PGA Seniors tournament, the Toshiba Senior Classic, will be held next March in Costa Mesa, Calif. The 54-hole event will feature a field of 78 players competing for $800,000.
VOLLEYBALL: Cuba beat the United States 16-14, 15-5, 15-12 at the Women's World Championship in Brazil.
TENNIS: Defending champion Natalia Medvedeva beat top-seeded Conchita Martinez 7-5, 6-4 at the Nokia Grand Prix in Essen, Germany. Boris Becker, upset by Richey Reneberg in the U.S. Open, beat the Texan 7-6 (7-3), 6-1 at the Stockholm Open.
BOXING: Alfred "Cobra" Kotey retained his WBO bantamweight title with a unanimous decision over Armando Castro in Middlesborough, England.
BOWLING: Doug Kent held a 229-pin lead going into the final round of match play in the Professional Bowlers Association's Greater Rochester (N.Y.) Open. Tish Johnson averaged 230.2 and overtook Marianne DiRupo to lead the $75,000 Columbia 300 Delaware Open.
SOCCER: No. 9 Tampa defeated No. 14 Rollins 4-2 in overtime. Spartans Martin Nebrelius and Adrian Bush scored two goals each.
_ Compiled from Times wires