Sports Briefs

Posted: Tuesday, October 14, 2003

Army football coach fired

WEST POINT, N.Y. Army coach Todd Berry was fired Monday with the team 5-35 in his four seasons and mired in an eight-game losing streak.

''The Corps of Cadets and the fans of Army football deserve a competitive program that is representative of this great institution,'' said Lt. Gen. William Lennox Jr., superintendent of the U.S. Military Academy.

Army (0-6) has just one win in its last 17 games. The Black Knights are averaging 63.8 yards rushing to rank last in the nation and are the only team averaging under 2 yards per carry.

South Florida, playing its inaugural Conference USA game last month, shut out Army 28-0 at Michie Stadium, marking the first time the Black Knights had been blanked at home since 1981.

John Mumford, who served as defensive line coach the past four seasons, was made interim coach.

''We have a commitment to restore the competitive vitality to the program,'' athletic director Rick Greenspan said.

A search will be under way in the next few weeks for a successor, Lennox said.

''I hate losing and the players hate it,'' said Greenspan, who hired Berry. ''It bothers them significantly. You can certainly sense their frustration. They're bitterly disappointed because they're representing a historic program.''

Boston College makes ACC an even dozen

GREENSBORO, N.C. The Atlantic Coast Conference decided even was much better than odd.

Less than four months after the ACC added Miami and Virginia Tech to form an 11-team league, Boston College agreed Sunday to become the 12th member. The Eagles most likely will begin conference play in 2006, ACC commissioner John Swofford said.

''An 11-team league can work, but does it work in the best way you would like to it to work from a number of different angles?'' Swofford said. ''We found the answer to that to be no.''

No guarantee of a football playoff game and scheduling headaches in a league with deep-rooted rivalries helped persuade the ACC's chancellors and presidents to move swiftly to add a 12th team.

Nadeau won't rush return to racing

CHARLOTTE, N.C. Jerry Nadeau will take his time coming back to racing after a May wreck that nearly killed him. So, for now, his team is making plans to compete next season without him.

When Nadeau is cleared to race again, MB2 Motorsports said he would most likely compete in ARCA and Busch Series races. Select Nextel Cup events are also a possibility.

''I have repeatedly said that I will not rush back,'' Nadeau said. ''I still have a ways to go, but I will get there. To be honest, the reality of not being able to come back sooner than I would have liked is hard to take. But I want to do this right.''

Nadeau, 33, sustained head, lung and rib injuries in the May 2 accident during a practice session at Richmond International Raceway in Virginia. He spent 24 days in the hospital, another two weeks in a rehabilitation facility, and has been undergoing therapy on an outpatient basis since.

Joe Nemechek will drive the No. 01 Pontiac in place of Nadeau next season in the Cup series. He'll take over driving duties the final month of this season, replacing Mike Skinner, the latest fill-in since Nadeau's wreck.

Nemechek owns a Busch Series car that Nadeau will likely drive when he is ready. Nadeau will also get assistance from Hendrick Motorsports, the team he used to drive for.

''Jerry continues to make progress and once he is ready to return to driving, we'll have a program in place that will allow him to gradually make his comeback to Cup racing,'' MB2 general manager Jay Frye said. ''The uncertainty of how long his full recovery will take is difficult for everyone, but Jerry is a young and determined individual who has many years of racing ahead of him.''

Since the accident, Nadeau has raced a bit at a Charlotte go-kart track to test his motor skills, but there's still no timetable for his return to full-time competition.

So the team has hired Nemechek, who was losing his job at Hendrick Motorsports at the end of this season to make way for 19-year-old phenom Brian Vickers.

Vickers had been scheduled to drive the final four races of this year in Nadeau's car, but will now get into the No. 25 Chevrolet as Nemechek moves over in a partnership worked out between Hendrick and MB2.

''Due to the reality of our current situation, we felt in the best interests of Jerry and of the race team this was the right path to take as we head into the 2004 season,'' Frye said.

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