Update on the latest in sports:


Associated Press

Posted on December 14, 2013 at 5:01 AM

Updated Saturday, Dec 14 at 5:36 AM


Alabama officials say Saban staying put

UNDATED (AP) — Alabama is hanging onto its head football coach.

The university has announced on its Twitter account that Nick Saban has reached "a long-term agreement" to remain with the Crimson Tide. Alabama didn't release terms of the new deal, which must be approved by the board of trustees.

Last year, Saban received an eight-year deal worth about $5.6 million annually and seems likely to remain college football's highest-paid coach. He's led the Tide to three national championships and is preparing his team for the Sugar Bowl against Oklahoma.

The agreement quells speculation that Saban would take over at Texas if Mack Brown steps down.


Brown doesn't acknowledge job status at banquet

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas football coach Mack Brown closed his annual team banquet without addressing his future with the Longhorns.

Brown acknowledged "distractions" for his 8-4 team, but stayed away from any hint of whether or not he'll return to the Longhorns after his 16th season.

He met with school President Bill Powers and athletic director Steve Patterson before the banquet. Patterson declined to say what was discussed or whether any conclusion had been reached.


QB Golston back in school

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Quarterback Everett Golson has been readmitted to Notre Dame after being suspended for the fall semester for what he termed "poor judgment on a test."

Golson helped the Irish go 12-0 during the regular season last year, regain the No. 1 ranking for the first time in nearly two decades and get to the national title game against Alabama in January. Coach Brian Kelly said last week Golson wouldn't be able to practice with the team until spring practices begin.


Pacers, Thunder, Spurs win again

UNDATED (AP) — It was a typical night for the Indiana Pacers, San Antonio Spurs and Oklahoma City Thunder as three of the NBA's top four teams all won.

Lance Stephenson had 20 points and 11 rebounds as the Pacers downed Charlotte 99-94. Roy Hibbert had 18 points and 11 rebounds for the Pacers, who increased their franchise-record home start to 11-0. Indiana also improved to 20-3 overall, tops in the Eastern Conference by 3 ½ games over the Miami Heat.

The Thunder clobbered the Los Angeles Lakers 122-97 as Kevin Durant poured in 31 points and Russell Westbrook added 19 points, 12 assists and eight rebounds in their fifth consecutive victory. Serge Ibaka (ih-BAH'-kah) delivered 19 points and 10 rebounds to help the Thunder win for the 13th time in 14 games.

The Spurs outscored Minnesota 37-21 in the fourth quarter to beat the Timberwolves 117-110 and tie the Thunder for second in the Western Conference, a half-game behind Portland. Tony Parker finished with 29 points and Manu Ginobili (MAN'-oo jih-NOH'-blee) added 20 to help San Antonio withstand Kevin Love's season-high 42 points.

In other NBA action:

— Eric Gordon scored 25 points on 10 of 12 shooting as New Orleans dumped Memphis 104-98. Jrue Holiday chipped in 20 points, had 12 assists and hit a clutch 3-pointer in the final minute after the Pelicans blew most of a 19-point lead.

— Mike Dunleavy hit a three-pointer with 5.8 seconds left before Joakim (JOH'-keem) Noah came up with a block that secured Chicago's 91-90 comeback win at Milwaukee. Noah scored 21 points and grabbed 18 rebounds as the Bulls stopped a three-game losing streak.

— Gordon Hayward scored a season-high 30 points to go with a career-best 13 rebounds in Utah's 103-993 verdict over Denver. Derrick Favors had 19 points for the Jazz, who rallied after blowing a 16-point lead in the third quarter.

— Dwight Howard scored 18 points, grabbed 11 rebounds and went 7-for-7 from the line as Houston knocked off Golden State 116-112. James Harden finished with 26 points and nine assists, while Chandler Parsons added 23 points to help the Rockets improve to 11-4 in their last 15 games.

— Phoenix has a season-high four-game winning streak after Goran Dragic scored 29 points and Eric Bledsoe had a career-high 28 in a 116-107 downing of Sacramento. Rudy Gay added 22 in his first game for the Kings since being acquired this week in a trade with Toronto.

— DeMar DeRozan scored 27 points and Terrence Ross had a season-high 24 as Toronto handed Philadelphia its fifth straight loss, 108-100. Greivis Vasquez scored 12 points in his first game with the Raptors, helping his new team win for just the second time in eight games.

— Kyrie Irving scored 31 points and Cleveland put together a 14-0 run in the fourth quarter to turn a five-point deficit into a 109-100 win over Orlando. Dion Waiters sparked the comeback and contributed 20 of his 21 points in the second half.

— Boston beat New York for the second time in a week as Avery Bradley scored seven of his 13 points in the fourth quarter of the Celtics' 90-86 triumph over the Knicks. Jared Sullinger delivered 19 points and six rebounds, while Courtney Lee added 18 points.

— Al Horford capped his season-high, 34-point performance by hitting a buzzer-beating jumper in overtime to give Atlanta a 101-99 victory against Washington. Paul Millsap and Kyle Korver had 16 points for the Hawks, who blew a 15-point lead in the fourth quarter.

— Brooklyn's three-game winning streak is over after Andre Drummond had 22 points and 13 rebounds in Detroit's 103-99 win over the Nets. The Nets cut a 21-point, third-quarter deficit to two before Kyle Singler hit two free throws with 10 seconds left to help the Pistons halt a three-game skid.


Rodgers to sit again

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) — Matt Flynn will be under center again when the Green Bay Packers face the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday.

Aaron Rodgers will miss his sixth straight game due to a broken collarbone. Rodgers worked out on a limited basis this week and even took some reps with the first-string offense in drills Wednesday and Thursday.

But after consulting with the team doctor, coach Mike McCarthy decided his franchise quarterback would sit out another week.

Flynn will get his third straight start for the Packers, who are in the thick of the battle for the NFC North title despite a 6-6-1 record.


McCluster questionable

UNDATED (AP) — Kansas City kick return star Dexter McCluster is listed as questionable for Sunday's game against Oakland with an infected ankle. Swabs were taken from the affected area, but test results are not back yet. Team trainer Rick Burkholder is concerned McCluster may have MRSA (MUR'-suh), a potentially deadly strain of staph infection that is resistant to antibiotics.

In other NFL news:

— Denver Broncos linebacker Von Miller has been fined $25,000 by the NFL for his helmet-to-helmet hit on Tennessee Titans quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick last Sunday.

— Chicago Bears wide receiver Brandon Marshall was docked $15,000 for wearing non-approved orange cleats during Monday's win over Dallas.

— Cowboys defensive back Orlando Scandrick was fined $21,000 for a helmet-to-helmet hit on Marshall, who was deemed a defenseless player on the play.

— Seattle Seahawks center Max Unger and tight end Zach Miller are both listed as probable for Sunday's game against the New York Giants. Unger has a pectoral injury that limited him earlier in the week, and Miller missed two days of practice with a rib injury. Brandon Browner, K.J. Wright and Percy Harvin have been ruled out for the game.

— Defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul will miss his third straight game with a shoulder injury when the Giants take on Seattle Sunday.

— Denver rookie cornerback Kayvon Webster fractured his right thumb in the Broncos' loss to San Diego Thursday night. He's scheduled for surgery, but might only miss one game.

— Vikings running back Adrian Peterson returned to practice Friday after being sidelined with a with a sprained right foot, but his status for Sunday's game against the Philadelphia Eagles is questionable.

— Chicago linebacker Lance Briggs will miss Sunday's game against Cleveland as he continues to recover from a fractured left shoulder. Briggs has been sidelined since suffering the injury Oct. 22.

— The Jets have placed wide receiver Stephen Hill on season-ending injured reserve with an injured left knee. Hill had just 24 receptions for 342 yards and a touchdown, including one catch for 2 yards in his last four games.


Cardinals Jones sidelined

UNDATED (AP) — Louisville point guard Chris Jones could miss the next two games because of a sprained wrist on his shooting hand.

Cardinals coach Rick Pitino says Jones injured his right wrist about a week ago and hurt it again in practice Thursday. Jones' absence leaves the sixth-ranked Cardinals without their second-leading scorer for Saturday's game against Western Kentucky.

Jones is averaging 14.9 points and 2.6 assists per game.


Pens score early, hang on to beat Devils

UNDATED (AP) — The Pittsburgh Penguins played about one period of solid hockey, but that was enough to stretch their home winning streak to seven games.

Pascal Dupuis scored 41 seconds into the Pens' seventh victory in their last eight games, a 3-2 downing of New Jersey. Chris Connor and Jayson Megna also had first-period goals to put the Penguins ahead 3-0 at intermission.

Marc-Andre Fleury turned back 37 shots and blanked the Devils after Patrik Elias (EH'-lee-ahsh) and Dainius Zubrus (DY'-nuhs ZOO'-bruhs) scored 56 seconds apart early in the second period.

The outcome puts Pittsburgh just one point behind Boston for the NHL's Eastern Conference lead.

Elsewhere on ice:

— Tomas Kopecky scored in the 10th round of a shootout to lift Florida past Washington 3-2. Aleksander Barkov and Dylan Olsen had the regulation goals before the Panthers completed their fourth victory in five games.

— Roberto Luongo stopped 19 shots for his 65th career shutout as Vancouver beat Edmonton 4-0. Jason Garrison set up goals by Daniel Sedin (seh-DEEN'), Zack Kassian and Dale Weise as the Canucks earned their season-high sixth consecutive win.


Howard out 2 to 4 weeks

DETROIT (AP) — Red Wings goalie Jimmy Howard is expected to miss two-to-four weeks with a sprained knee. The team says Howard has a sprained MCL suffered in Wednesday's practice.

The injury could affect the 29-year-old Howard's chances at making the U.S. team for next year's Olympics in Russia.


Cyclones win battle of Iowa

UNDATED (AP) — Just four top-25 college basketball teams were in action on Friday, two of which squared off in Ames, Iowa.

— Georges Niang scored 24 points, including the go-ahead basket with 18.8 seconds left to lead 17th-ranked Iowa State past No. 23 Iowa 85-82. Dustin Hogue had 12 points and 16 rebounds for the 8-0 Cyclones.


— Shaq Goodin and Joe Jackson each scored 17 points as No. 16 Memphis beat Arkansas-Little Rock 73-59. The Tigers shot 52 percent in the second after trailing by double digits before intermission.

— Spencer Dinwiddie scored 17 points and 21st-ranked Colorado earned its 10th straight win by thumping Elon. Xavier Johnson added 12 points and 15 rebounds for the Buffaloes, who were coming off a win over Kansas


DENVER (AP) — The Colorado Rockies have signed first baseman Justin Morneau (MOHR'-noh) to a two-year, $12.5 million contract.

Morneau is a four-time All-Star and a lifetime .277 hitter with 221 home runs and 863 RBIs. He won the 2006 American League MVP Award after hitting .321 with 34 homers and 130 RBIs for the Minnesota Twins.


KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Omar Infante (ihn-FAHN'-tay) appears to have found a new team.

A person close to the negotiations tells The Associated Press that the Kansas City Royals and the second baseman are nearing an agreement on a four-year contract.

The 31-year-old Infante hit .318 with 10 homers and 51 RBIs in 118 games for Detroit last season.


Terps, Irish advance to Sunday's title game

CHESTER, Pa. (AP) — It will be Maryland against Notre Dame in the NCAA men's soccer title game Sunday near Philadelphia.

Patrick Mullins scored his 17th and 18th goals of the season to lead the Terrapins to a 2-1 victory over Virginia in the semifinals. The Terps are vying for their third national championship in nine years.

Patrick Hodan scored both goals and Patrick Wall made five saves as the Fighting Irish beat New Mexico 2-0.


Tie at the top

NAPLES, Fla. (AP) — Defending champions Kenny Perry and Sean O'Hair shot an 8-under 64 in modified alternate-shot play for a share of the first-round lead in the Franklin Templeton Shootout. The teams of Matt Kuchar-Harris English and Charles Howell III-Justin Leonard also shot 64. The 24 teams will play better ball Saturday and finish with a scramble Sunday.


Marquette AD resigns

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Marquette athletic director Larry Williams says he is resigning to pursue leadership opportunities outside of the university.

Williams has overseen Marquette's athletic department for two years.

Former Marquette AD Bill Cords will serve as athletic director until a replacement is named.


Kardashian files for divorce

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Khloe Kardashian is ending her four-year marriage to Lamar Odom.

The professional celebrity has filed for divorce in Los Angeles County Superior Court, citing irreconcilable differences. It comes days after Odom pleaded no contest on Monday to a misdemeanor drunken driving charge.