Sports Briefs


No change in top 4 of CFP
rankings; Georgia, ‘Bama 1-2

(AP) — Georgia, Alabama, Notre Dame and Clemson held their spots in the top four of the College Football Playoff rankings, and unbeaten Miami moved up three spots to No. 7 before its showdown with the Fighting Irish.

Oklahoma remained fifth and TCU moved up to sixth in the rankings released Tuesday. The Sooners and Horned Frogs play a key Big 12 game on Saturday, with the winner taking sole possession of first place in the conference.

After Miami, unbeaten Wisconsin was No. 8, the highest-ranked Big Ten team. Washington, the highest-ranked Pac-12 team, is ninth and Auburn is 10th.

No. 14 Penn State and No. 15 Ohio State fell out of the top 10 after losses.

Jokic nets 41 as Nuggets beat Brooklyn Nets 112-104

DENVER (AP) — Nikola Jokic had a career-high 41 points for Denver, and Will Barton and Paul Millsap scored 17 apiece as the Nuggets beat Brooklyn 112-104 on Tuesday.

Jokic also had 12 rebounds, two steals and two blocks. The Nets starters couldn’t match Jokic’s output; they combined for 40 points.

Grizzlies top Trailblazers despite 36 points by McCollum

Portland, Ore. (AP) — Tyreke Evans scored 21 points, Mike Conley had 20 — all in the second half — and the Grizzlies held off the Trail Blazers.

Marc Gasol added 16 points as the Grizzlies improved to 2-1 on their five-game road trip.

CJ McCollum led Portland with 36 points. Damian Lillard had 12 points on 4-for-16 shooting.

UCLA basketball players accused of shoplifting in China

HANGZHOU, China (AP) — UCLA basketball players were “involved in a situation” in China, with police being summoned to the team’s hotel to investigate the unknown matter, the Pac-12 Conference commissioner said.

Commissioner Larry Scott said in a statement that “UCLA is cooperating fully with local authorities.”

Citing a person close to the situation, the Los Angeles Times reported that freshmen LiAngelo Ball, Cody Riley and Jalen Hill were involved in a shoplifting incident.

Ball is the younger brother of Lonzo Ball, the former UCLA star and current Los Angeles Lakers rookie. Their father, LaVar Ball, is also in China and told ESPN that he was “going to wait until I get more intel on what’s going on” before commenting.

Scott did not elaborate on what occurred and said the league was directing all inquiries to UCLA.

Broncos coach sticking with Osweiler at QB

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) — Vance Joseph is sticking with Brock Osweiler after his sputtering return to the Denver Broncos’ lineup in a 51-23 flop at Philadelphia.

Joseph said Osweiler energized the Broncos (3-5) last week even though he threw two interceptions that led to touchdowns Sunday. Osweiler replaced the turnover-prone Trevor Siemian a week ago.

Joseph also said that neither QB Chad Kelly (wrist, knee) nor tight end Jake Butt (knee) would be activated this week, thus ending any hopes of the rookies playing in 2017.

Former Penn State assistant drops whistleblower lawsuit

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (AP) — A former Penn State assistant football coach has ended his defamation and whistleblower lawsuit against the university.

Court records show Mike McQueary’s attorney filed for the lawsuit to be discontinued and ended with prejudice Friday, meaning the lawsuit cannot be brought back to court.

McQueary filed his lawsuit against the university in 2012 after he lost his job following the firing of former head coach Joe Paterno. He later testified during the child sex abuse case against the school’s former defensive football coach Jerry Sandusky.

McQueary was awarded more than $12 million last year after his civil suit trial. The university had been filing a series of appeals in an attempt to overturn the verdict.

Neither side has disclosed if a settlement has been reached.

Minnesota Timberwolves eager for litmus test vs. Warriors

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The last time the Minnesota Timberwolves won five straight games, five head coaches and nearly nine long years ago, Al Jefferson was the centerpiece of the team. Kevin Love was a rookie, still coming off the bench. Fifteen different players started at least one game.

Karl-Anthony Towns had just turned 13. President George W. Bush was still in the White House.

The woebegone Wolves have waited a long time for this. They will play at Golden State on Wednesday night, just one-half game behind the defending NBA champion Warriors for the best record in the Western Conference.

Forget for a moment that the regular season is merely 12 percent complete. For the first time in, well, 13 years or so the Wolves will be a legitimate participant in a marquee national game on ESPN rather than a token opponent.

“You want to see where you are and how you measure up,” coach Tom Thibodeau said. “Everyone in the league is chasing them.”
These Wolves (7-3) have produced the franchise’s best 10-game start to the schedule since a 9-1 record in 2001 when Kevin Garnett was 25, Terrell Brandon was the point guard and Anthony Peeler was the first player the off the bench.