BC-AP Sports Digest

Published: December 30, 2013

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

The supervisor is Fred Lief, followed at 5 p.m. by Rick Freeman and at 1 a.m. by Rick Freeman. The New York sports desk can be reached at 800 845-8450, ext. 1630; Sports Photos, ext. 1918; graphics, ext. 7636; agate, ext. 1635. AP stories, along with the photos that accompany them, also can be obtained from http://www.apexchange.com. Reruns are available from the Service Desk (800 838-4616) or your local AP bureau. All times EST.

AP Sports Extra previews the NFL Playoffs. The paginated previews are in AP Exchange. There will be a full page, half page, tab version listed as SE-NFL Playoffs

TOP STORIES

FBN–COACHES RDP

Plenty of pink slips for NFL coaches. With the regular season not even a day old, five are gone: Mike Shanahan (Redskins), Leslie Frazier (Vikings), Greg Schiano (Buccaneers), Jim Schwartz (Lions). The Browns got a jump on things by firing Brad Chudzinski a day earlier. By Barry Wilner. SENT: 550 words, photos. UPCOMING: 800 words, photos by 4 p.m.

OLY–SOCHI SECURITY

The bombings in Russia serve as a stark reminder of what the Olympics represent to terrorists: A high-profile target with more than 2,500 athletes waving flags of nearly 90 nations. To hear participants and sports leaders tell it, that’s also what will make Sochi one of the best-protected venues in the world come February. By National Writer Eddie Pells. 750 words, photos by 5 p.m.

– With:

– LONDON — OLY–IOC-Sochi-Security. By Stephen Wilson. SENT: 750 words, photos.

– MOSCOW — Russia-Explosion. By Vladimir Isachenkov. SENT: 1,100 words, photos, video.

– HONOLULU — United-States-Russia-Explosion. By White House Correspondent Julie Pace. SENT: 500 words, photos.

CAR–SCHUMACHER-INJURED

GRENOBLE, France — Doctors treating Michael Schumacher are not speculating on the outcome for the Formula One great, saying they are taking his very critical head injury “hour by hour” following his ski accident in the French Alps. By Sarah DiLorenzo and Graham Dunbar. SENT. 750 words, photos.

– With:

– PARIS — Schumacher-Adrenaline. By Lori Hinnant. SENT: 600 words, photos.

NFL

FBN–BRONCOS-Post-season

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — Finally, the Broncos can get ready for some meaningful football. Oh, sure, the 13 wins and all those records Peyton Manning set will count, but the regular season was simply a warmup act for a team with the Super Bowl on its radar. By Pro Football Writer Arnie Stapleton. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 6 p.m.

FBN–EAGLES-WORST TO FIRST

PHILADELPHIA — Nick Foles and the Eagles completed a worst-to-first turnaround under rookie coach Chip Kelly by beating Dallas on the road to clinch their first NFC East title in three years. Next, they host Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints in a playoff game Saturday night. By Pro Football Writer Rob Maaddi. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 6 p.m.

FBN–PATRIOTS-PLAYOFFS

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — The New England Patriots finished the regular season with five wins in six games, an historic performance by LeGarrette Blount and a first-round bye. Now they wait to find out who they’ll face the night of Jan. 11 in a home playoff game. By Howard Ulman. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 6 p.m.

– Also:

– CHARLOTTE, N.C. — FBN–Panthers-Needed Rest. By Steve Reed. UPCOMING: 650 words, photos by 6 p.m.

– SANTA CLARA, Calif. — FBN–49ers-Different Road. By Janie McCauley. UPCOMING: 750 words, photos by 6:30 p.m.

– METAIRIE, La. — FBN–Defiant Saints. By Brett Martel. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 6 p.m.

– GREEN BAY, Wis. — FBN–Packers-Playoffs. By Genaro C. Armas. UPCOMING: 600 words, by 7:30 p.m.

– SAN DIEGO — FBN–Chargers-Playoffs. By Bernie Wilson. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos by 7 p.m.

– CINCINNATI — FBN–Bengals-Playoff Drought. By Joe Kay. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 5 p.m.

– KANSAS CITY, Mo. — FBN–Chiefs-Playoff Ready. By Dave Skretta. UPCOMING: 750 words, photos by 4 p.m.

– Separates on all teams that fired coaches.

– Wrapups on all other teams that did not make playoffs.

COMMENTARY

FBN–ON FOOTBALL-OFFICIATING

NEW YORK — The NFL season closed with some wild playoff chases, and even more uproar over officiating. It has not been a great year for the zebras, with fans in Pittsburgh now screaming about being robbed of a playoff berth because of a rules gaffe. By Pro Football Writer Barry Wilner. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 6 p.m.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL

FBC–T25-ALAMO BOWL

SAN ANTONIO — Mack Brown coaches his final game at Texas after 16 seasons when the underachieving Longhorns (8-4) take on BCS-snubbed No. 10 Oregon (10-2) in the Alamo Bowl. By Paul J. Weber. 750 words. Game starts 6:45 p.m.

FBC–T25-HOLIDAY BOWL

SAN DIEGO — No. 16 Arizona State, which has scored 53 or more points six times, and Texas Tech, which averages 88 plays a game, meet in the Holiday Bowl. By Bernie Wilson. UPCOMING: 750 words, photos. Game starts 10:15 p.m.

FBC–ARMED FORCES BOWL

FORT WORTH, Texas — Keenan Reynolds, who holds the NCAA record for touchdowns rushing by a quarterback, runs for two more and Navy wins for only the second time its last seven bowl games, beating Middle Tennessee State 24-6 in the Armed Forces Bowl. By Stephen Hawkins. SENT: 130 words, photos. UPCOMING: 750 words, photos. Game started 11:45 a.m.

FBC–MUSIC CITY BOWL

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (7-5) look for a second straight bowl win in the Music City Bowl. They face the Mississippi Rebels (7-5), who are trying to bounce back from an overtime loss in the Egg Bowl. By Teresa M. Walker. UPCOMING: 750 words, photos. Game starts 3:15 p.m.

Tuesday Games:

– SHREVEPORT, La. — FBC–AdvoCare 100 Bowl. By David Brandt. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 4 p.m. ET.

– EL PASO, Texas — FBC–Sun Bowl. SENT: 650 words, photos.

– MEMPHIS, Tenn. — FBC–Liberty Bowl. By Steve Megargee. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 4 p.m.

– ATLANTA — FBC–T25-Chick-fil-A Bowl. By Charles Odum. UPCOMING. 700 words, photos by 4 p.m.

– Also:

– TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — FBC–T25-Florida St-Heading Out. By Kareem Copeland. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos by 5 p.m.

– SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — FBC–T25-Fiesta Bowl-Tall Order. By College Football Writer John Marshall. UPCOMING: 750 words, photos by 6 p.m.

– FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — FBC–T25-Orange Bowl-Boyd. By Tim Reynolds. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 2 p.m. EST.

– LOS ANGELES — FBC–T25-Rose Bowl. By Greg Beacham. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos.

– ATLANTA — FBC–Bobby Dodd Award. By Charles Odum. SENT: 250 words, photos.

OLYMPICS

OLY–SPD-US SPEEDSKATING TRIALS-CRASH

KEARNS, Utah — Olympic hopeful Theresa Cliff-Ryan is injured lands on her head after being struck on the sidelines by a crashing speedskater. There is no immediate word on her condition, but she was conscious and talking to paramedics. By National Writer Paul Newberry. SENT: 550 words, photos.

OLY–SPD-GUNTHER’S COMEBACK

KEARNS, Utah — Kelly Gunther is reminded daily of the time when she couldn’t put on skates and go fast on the ice. The speedskater endured a gruesome crash in 2010, a couple of months after she failed too make the U.S. Olympic team. Gunther is going to the Sochi after earning a spot in the 1,000 metres. By Beth Harris. UPCOMING: 650 words, photos.

– Also:

– OLY–SKI-Mancuso’s Break. SENT: 120 words.

COLLEGE BASKETBALL

BKC–T25-LOUISVILLE-MOVING ON

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Louisville can’t wallow too long after its loss to Kentucky. On Tuesday night, the No. 14 Cardinals play their American Athletic Conference opener at Central Florida. By Gary B. Graves. Upcoming. 550 words, photos by 3 p.m. Developing from 12:30 p.m. news conference.

BKC–T25-IOWA ST-KANE

AMES, Iowa — Point guard DeAndre Kane is flourishing in his only season at No. 13 Iowa State. The Marshall transfer is averaging nearly 15 points a game and 7.5 rebounds. By Luke Meredith. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos by 6 p.m.

– Also:

– BKC–T25-Ballot Breakdown. By Basketball Writer Jim O’Connell. SENT: 400 words, photos.

– BKW–T25-Ballot Breakdown. By Basketball Writer Doug Feinberg. SENT: 400 words, photos.

FEATURES

TEN–AUSTRALIAN OPEN SERIES ROUNDUP

BRISBANE, Australia — Every point mattered for Maria Sharapova, even in a first-round match in a season-opening tournament against an opponent ranked 74th. The four-time major winner had played only one match following an early exit at Wimbledon last season because of a shoulder injury. By John Pye. SENT: 550 words, photos.

– With:

– BEIJING — TEN–Shenzhen Open. SENT: 100 words, photos.

– CHENNAI, India — TEN–Chennai. SENT: 200 words.

– DOHA, Qatar — TEN–Qatar Open. SENT: 100 words, photos.

BKN–REBUILDING KINGS

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Kings coach Michael Malone gathered his players following a two-day Christmas break last week and asked them one question: What kind of team do they want to be this season? The rebuilding Kings are 9-20, but Malone sees small signs of improvement. By Antonio Gonzalez. UPCOMING: 650 words, photos by 6 p.m.

OTHER NEWS

– HOBART, Australia — SAI–Sydney-Hobart. Victoire declared handicap winner of Sydney to Hobart yacht race, 1 1/2 days after Wild Oats XI takes line honours. UPCOMING: 300 words by 4 p.m.

– MALMO, Sweden — HKO–World Junior. Canada beats Slovakia 5-3 at world junior hockey tournament. SENT: 150 words, photos..

CAPSULES

– BKN–NBA Capsules.

– HKN–NHL Capsules.

– FBC–Bowl Capsules.

– BKC–Top 25 Capsules.

– BKW–Top 25 Capsules.

Monday’s Time Schedule (EST)

NBA

Washington at Detroit, 7:30 p.m.

Dallas at Minnesota, 8 p.m.

Chicago at Memphis, 8 p.m.

Portland at New Orleans, 8 p.m.

Miami at Denver, 9 p.m.

Charlotte at Utah, 9 p.m.

Phoenix at L.A. Clippers, 10:30 p.m.

NHL

Washington at Ottawa, 7:30 p.m.

Los Angeles at Chicago, 8 p.m.

Detroit at Nashville, 8 p.m.

Philadelphia at Vancouver, 10 p.m.

College Bowls

Armed Forces at Fort Worth, Texas — Middle Tennessee vs. Navy, 11:45 a.m.

Music City at Nashville, Tenn. — Mississippi vs. Georgia Tech, 3:15 p.m.

Alamo at San Antonio — Oregon vs. Texas, 6:45 p.m.

Holiday at San Diego — Arizona State vs. Texas Tech, 10:15 p.m.

College Basketball (Top 25)

Men

No. 6 Oklahoma State vs. Robert Morris, 7 p.m.

No. 9 Baylor vs. Oral Roberts, 8 p.m.

No. 16 Kansas vs. Toledo, 8 p.m.

No. 24 Gonzaga vs. San Francisco, 9 p.m

Women

No. 16 LSU vs. Jackson State, 9 p.m.

No. 20 Syracuse at Arizona State, 8 p.m.

15:48ET 30-12-13

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