At age 28, major league pitcher Joe Kennedy (below). The cause of death has not
been determined, but Kennedy's agent, Damon Lapa, said that the player's family
had been told by doctors that he might have had an enlarged heart. Kennedy was
at his in-laws' house in Tampa when he collapsed early last Friday. In a
seven-year career Kennedy, a 6'4" lefthander, was 43--61 with a 4.79 ERA.
He played for three teams—the A's, Diamondbacks and Blue Jays—in 2007, going
After losing a majority decision to Ricardo Mayorga last Friday, Fernando
Vargas. "Absolutely, this is the end. This was my last fight," the
two-time world champ said. The lead-up to the fight, for the WBC Continental
Americas super middleweight title, featured plenty of fireworks, including a
brawl at their first news conference in July. And Friday's fight—one of the
best of the year—lived up to the hype. Mayorga twice dropped Vargas as the two
pounded each other for long stretches. "I am not going to take anything
away from Mayorga. He was the better man tonight," Vargas said.
By the IAAF, all of Marion Jones's results dating to Sept. 1, 2000, because of
her doping confession. Last month Jones, 32, admitted that she had used
performance-enhancing drugs from Sept. 2000 to July 2001, a period during which
she won five gold medals at the Sydney Olympics. The IAAF last week upheld her
two-year ban, erased her from the track record books and said she should pay
back $700,000 in prize money she won since Sept. 2000. The IAAF also
recommended that Jones's relay teammates be disqualified and lose their medals
from the 2000 Games.
By Real Madrid, an interest in New York Red Bulls striker Jozy Altidore
(below). The 18-year-old from Livingston, N.J., scored nine goals in 22 MLS
games last year and made his debut with the U.S. national team on Nov. 17.
Carlos Bucero, sporting director assistant for Real, which employs some of the
biggest names in the game, was reportedly in New York last week. "Jozy's
happy with where he's at in this stage of his career with the Red Bulls, but
we'll see what happens," said Altidore's agent, Richard Motzkin.
By Nebraska, embattled football coach Bill Callahan, whose four-year record was
27--22. Under Callahan the Cornhuskers' once-proud defense became one of the
most generous in the country. This year it surrendered at least 40 points six
times. Callahan also came under fire recently for making derogatory remarks
about former coach and current interim athletic director Tom Osborne (SI, Oct.
29), who made the decision to fire Callahan.
As Texas A&M coach, Dennis Franchione. In five years his teams were 32--28.
Calls for Franchione's job intensified earlier this year when it was revealed
that he had been selling an e-mail newsletter with inside information to big
boosters for $1,200 a year. On Monday the school hired Houston Texans offensive
coordinator and former Packers head coach Mike Sherman.
By 36-year-old retiree Pete Sampras in a year-end exhibition in Macau, Roger
Federer, who won three of four grand slam events in 2007. The two played three
matches in the Far East; Sampras, who won 14 Grand Slams before retiring in
2003, said he hoped to be competitive and maybe take a set from Federer. He did
better last Saturday, winning 7--6, 6--4. Federer—who won the first two
exhibitions, both in straight sets—was gracious in defeat. "I can go into
vacation and really reflect on the year but also the exhibitions and look
forward to next year," said Federer. "It's going to be fantastic, so,
no, I'm not too embarrassed [to lose]."
His improbable comeback from head and neck injuries that kept him out of the
NFL for nearly two years, Chiefs running back Priest Holmes (left). In June,
Holmes, 34, told the Chiefs that he wanted to play again after sitting out for
22 months; last month he returned to the active lineup, making two starts in
place of the injured Larry Johnson and rushing for 137 yards on 46 carries in
four games. But against the Colts on Nov. 18 he felt discomfort—he didn't
specify what kind—and decided to retire rather than risk permanent injury or
paralysis. He retires as Kansas City's alltime leading rusher, with 6,070