Sports Log

Probert’s brain reportedly had disease

March 3, 2011

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Two newspapers are reporting researchers at Boston University have found a degenerative disease in brain tissue donated by former NHL enforcer Bob Probert. The New York Times and The Globe and Mail in Toronto reported on their websites last night that Probert had chronic traumatic encephalopathy when he died last July of heart failure at age 45. Probert played 16 seasons in the NHL and his 3,300 penalty minutes ranks fifth all time.

Crisp arrested in Ariz., faces DUI charge Oakland outfielder Coco Crisp was arrested early yesterday morning in Scottsdale, Ariz., on suspicion of drunken driving. Crisp, a former Red Sox player, was released from jail and arrived at Phoenix Municipal Stadium in time to take part in pregame drills before Oakland’s exhibition against Cleveland. He did not speak with reporters . . . Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira has ended his relationship with longtime agent Scott Boras. Teixeira, who is in the third season of a $180 million, eight-year contract negotiated by Boras, has not yet hired a new agent . . . The Dodgers signed Opening Day starter Clayton Kershaw to a one-year deal worth $500,000 . . . The Cardinals expect Chris Carpenter to miss at least one spring start even though the righthander’s strained left hamstring is feeling better . . . Giants righthander Matt Cain will miss his scheduled start today against the Rockies with right elbow inflammation . . . The Indians traded lefthander Aaron Laffey, who was in the mix to be the club’s No. 5 starter, to Seattle for minor league utilityman Matt Lawson.

Report: UMass football decision nears Chancellor Robert Holub said the University of Massachusetts will announce whether its football program will make the jump to the Bowl Subdivision level “sometime in early March,’’ according to a report on An earlier Globe report said indications point to the Minutemen leaving the Championship Subdivision to become a football-only member of the Mid-American Conference starting in the 2013 season . . . Sophomore forward Brandon Davies was dismissed from BYU’s basketball team after he admitted to having a sexual relationship with his girlfriend, the Salt Lake Tribune reported. BYU’s honor code forbids students from having premarital sex . . . NCAA president Mark Emmert said he’s willing to help create a playoff format to decide a national championship for the top level of college football. However, that won’t happen unless the leaders of institutions fielding teams in the Bowl Subdivision want to make such a change after contracts with the current Bowl Championship Series expire in 2014. Emmert stopped short of endorsing a playoff, saying that the NCAA also sees value in the bowl system . . . Middle Tennessee basketball player Tina Stewart was stabbed to death at her apartment close to campus and police have two people in custody and were searching for a third. The 21-year-old Stewart averaged 5.5 points in 28 games . . . An investigation of 25 top college football programs by Sports Illustrated and CBS News has revealed that Oklahoma and TCU were the only ones to do criminal background checks on recruits. The study found about 7 percent of the 2,837 players — 204 total — “had been in trouble with the law either before or after entering college.’’

USGA names Davis executive director Mike Davis has been selected as the new executive director of the US Golf Association. Davis has worked for the USGA since 1990, and for the past six years has been senior director of rules and competition, which put him in charge of setting up the golf courses for its most important championships, including the US Open. Staying involved in course setup was key to Davis taking over as the organization’s seventh executive director. He replaces David Fay, who retired at the end of last year after being in charge for 21 years . . . Jack Nicklaus doubts his lead in career Grand Slam titles will last — he figures it’s just a matter of time before Tiger Woods ends his slump. “I still think he’ll break my record,’’ said Nicklaus, who won 18 major championships, currently four more than Woods. “I’m surprised that he has not bounced back by now.’’

Ireland tops England in cricket shocker Kevin O’Brien scored the fastest Cricket World Cup century to lead Ireland to a three-wicket win over England in one of the biggest upsets in the tournament’s 35-year history . . . Citing fatigue, Novak Djokovic will skip defending Davis Cup champion Serbia’s first-round series against India this weekend . . . Davis Cup teams will no longer have to play a fifth match if one side already has an unbeatable 3-1 lead. The International Tennis Federation announced the new “dead rubber’’ rule ahead of this weekend’s World Group first-round matches . . . The Revolution re-signed second-year players Zak Boggs and Tim Murray to undisclosed deals. Boggs, a forward/midfielder, started four games last year and scored two goals. Murray didn’t make any appearances, but finished the season as the second-string goalkeeper . . . Amy Rodriguez and Megan Rapinoe scored first-half goals and Abby Wambach returned from a heel injury as the US defeated Japan, 2-1, in its opener at the Algarve Cup in Vila Real de San Antonio, Portugal.