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Thursday Sports in Brief | Raleigh News & Watchers


The College Football Playoff announced Thursday that it would consider expanding from four to twelve teams to compete in the national championship, with six seats reserved for the highest-ranking conference champions and the other six going to a wide selection.

The CFP’s surprise announcement outlined a plan that would triple the number of teams entering the postseason with a chance to win it all.

Even if the format is accepted – this fall at the earliest – there was no indication in the proposal of when an extended playoff could take place. The earliest seems to be for the 2023 season, but it is more likely after the 2026 season.

NOVI, Michigan (AP) – One of the sons of legendary University of Michigan football coach Bo Schembechler and two of his former players detailed Thursday how they were abused by the team’s longtime doctor and how Schembechler turned a blind eye to him told you about the abuse, told you to “harden yourself” and beat your son in anger.

Matt Schembechler, 62, and former Wolverines players Daniel Kwiatkowski and Gilvanni Johnson shared similar stories about how Dr. Robert E. Anderson harassed her during physical exams and digitally penetrated her decades ago.

They also talked about how Bo Schembechler, a Michigan icon whose statue stands outside a university building that bears his name, refused to protect her and allowed Anderson to abuse gamers and other patients for years.


PHOENIX (AP) – The Arizona Diamondbacks have shaken up their coaching staff to help stabilize their season.

D-Backs manager Torey Lovullo fired punch trainer Darnell Coles and assistant trainer Eric Hinske on Thursday as the team struggled to get runs and in a 5-30 distance from 4.

The Diamondbacks appointed co-hitting coaches to replace the fired couple. Rick Short was promoted to Triple-A Reno and Drew Hedman was Arizona’s production coordinator.

Arizona started the season 15-13 but now has a record of 8:43 for the majors. The D-Backs have lost a franchise record of 19 games in a row.


COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – The Blue Jackets promoted Brad Larsen Thursday to fill the vacancy as head coach after Columbus split from John Tortorella after six seasons at the helm.

Larsen, 43, a former NHL striker who has been an assistant coach with the Blue Jackets for the past seven seasons, has agreed to a three-year deal through the 2023/24 season, said general manager Jarmo Kekalainen.

NEW YORK (AP) – Connor McDavid, center of the Edmonton Oilers, Auston Matthews, center of the Toronto Maple Leafs, and Nathan MacKinnon, striker of Colorado Avalanche, were named as NHL MVP to the finalists of the Hart Trophy.

A McDavid win would make the Oilers the first team to have multiple Hart Trophy winners in consecutive seasons since the Boston Bruins 1968-69 (Phil Esposito) and 1969-70 (Bobby Orr).

Cale Makar of Colorado is a finalist for the Norris Trophy for the league’s best defender. Reigning playoff MVP Victor Hedman from reigning Stanley Cup winner Tampa Bay Lightning and Adam Fox from New York Rangers are the other Norris finalists.

Avalanche goalkeeper Philipp Grubauer is a finalist for the Vezina Trophy along with Marc-Andre Fleury from Vegas and Andrei Vasilevskiy from Tampa Bay.

Captains Mark Stone of the Golden Knights, Patrice Bergeron of the Bruins and Aleksander Barkov of the Panthers are finalists for the Selke Trophy for best defensive striker.


OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) – Giselle Juarez threw her second full game in a row, and Oklahoma won its fifth national championship, beating Florida State 5-1 in the Women’s College World Series on Thursday.

The Sooners lacked a dominant pitcher at the start of the series, but Juarez answered the call and allowed a run on two goals in decisive Game 3. Oklahoma won Game 2 6-2 behind Juarez, who went 5-0 in the World Series and was voted Most Outstanding Player. They allowed four runs in 31 1/3 innings.


GENEVA (AP) – Brisbane could officially host the 2032 Olympics when the IOC meets in Tokyo next month.

IOC President Thomas Bach said after a board meeting on Thursday that Brisbane may be granted hosting rights at a July 21 meeting ahead of the Tokyo Olympics.

The Australian city’s victory already seemed certain after being put on the fast lane in February by being named as a preferred candidate with no formal opponents.


GLASGOW, Scotland (dpa) – The Scottish club Celtic hired former Australian national coach Ange Postecoglou as coach on Thursday.

The 55-year-old Postecoglou is moving from Yokohama F. Marinos in Japan to the Glasgow club.

Crosstown rivals Rangers prevented Celtic from winning their 10th straight title that season, and Neil Lennon resigned as coach in February, with the club by far second.


FLORENCE, Italy (dpa) – The Norwegian youngster Jakob Ingebrigtsen broke a 21-year-old European record at the Diamond League meeting in Florence on Thursday when he won the 5,000 meters.

Ingebrigtsen achieved a time of 12 minutes and 48.45 seconds, surpassing the European mark of 12: 49.71 minutes set by the Belgian Mohammed Mourhit in 2000.

It was also a personal best for the 20-year-old Norwegian – who had never run the distance under 13 minutes – as well as the world best time this year.


NEW YORK (AP) – A Manhattan judge on Thursday denied an attempt to force Major League Baseball to bring the All-Star game back to Atlanta next month.

US District Judge Valerie E. Carponi ruled against a nonprofit that represents small businesses, saying a lawsuit had provided no evidence that its members were injured by the decision to postpone the game.

The lawsuit, filed on May 31, alleged that Major League Baseball was unconstitutional in moving game from Atlanta Braves Stadium to Denver after Georgia Republicans passed a restrictive new electoral law.

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