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For the Record
September 05, 2005
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September 05, 2005

For The Record

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Cincinnati basketball coach Bob Huggins (above) on Aug. 24, a day after university president Nancy Zimpher said he'd be fired if he didn't step down within 24 hours. The ouster ends a power struggle between the popular coach, who won 399 games in 16 years and took the Bearcats to the Final Four in 1992, and Zimpher, who took over as president two years ago and is intent on raising Cincinnati's academic profile. She cited the basketball program's poor graduation rates and several player arrests on Huggins's watch as reasons for the ultimatum. (Last year Huggins, who received a $3 million buyout, was suspended for two months after he was arrested for drunken driving.) The Bearcats, who are preparing for their first season in the Big East, named Huggins's top assistant, Andy Kennedy, as coach. "It was a good run," a teary Huggins said at a rally in his honor at a Cincinnati sports bar last Thursday. "I certainly want to support the guys we have here."


From the U.S. Open in the first round, Svetlana Kuznetsova (right), who made the earliest departure ever by a defending women's champ. The Russian, who won the title last year after beating fourth seed Lindsay Davenport in the semis, was the fifth seed, but back problems had hampered her preparation for this year's event. On Monday, Ekaterina Bychkova, 20, the 97th-ranked player in the world, knocked her out in straight sets. "I just didn't play my game," Kuznetsova said.


From the list of NCAA schools banned from using American Indian mascots or nicknames during postseason play, Florida State. In its ruling last month aimed at eliminating "hostile and abusive" nicknames, the NCAA said schools that are supported by their namesake tribes may be able to keep their logos. Seminole tribes in Florida and Oklahoma informed the NCAA that they don't consider the school's imagery offensive; thus, Chief Osceola, the school's mascot since 1947, can ride again. Several of the 17 other schools affected by the order--including the North Dakota Fighting Sioux--are now trying to line up support from local tribes to support appeals to the NCAA.


By Kenyan native Bernard Lagat, 30, the U.S. record in the 1,500 meters. Lagat, who was sworn in as a U.S. citizen last year, ran 3:29.30 at the IAAF Grand Prix meet in Rieti, Italy, on Sunday, the fastest time in the world this year and .47 of a second faster than the American record, set by Sydney Maree in 1985.


By the Denver Broncos, running back Maurice Clarett (above). Broncos coach Mike Shanahan raised eyebrows in April when he used a third-round selection on the former Ohio State star--who proved to be an unworthy investment. A groin injury forced Clarett to miss two weeks of training camp, and he never made it on the field in a preseason game. Shanahan stopped defending Clarett to the media, and some Broncos questioned his commitment to his rehabilitation. "You can't make the club in the tub," said wide receiver Rod Smith. Clarett, who hasn't played since the 2003 Fiesta Bowl, is free to sign with any team. But his agent, Steve Feldman, said, "I'm not real confident of anything at this point."

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