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Sports Briefs

Posted: Thursday, December 19, 2002

Judge: Bonds ball must be sold, proceeds split

SAN FRANCISCO -- And Barry Bonds' record home run ball belongs to ... Nobody. Not Alex Popov. Not Patrick Hayashi. But they'll still get something from it.

Judge Kevin McCarthy ruled Wednesday that neither Popov nor Hayashi could claim ownership of the historic ball, hit by Bonds for his 73rd home run on the last day of the 2001 season at Pac Bell Park. Instead, McCarthy told them to sell it and split the money -- perhaps more than $1 million.

Since it landed in the stands 14 months ago, the ball has been locked in legal limbo and a safe-deposit box. With Solomonic wisdom, the judge ruled that Popov -- who gloved the ball for an instant -- and Hayashi -- who ended up with the ball -- each has a legitimate claim and neither should get the ball outright.

UCLA hires Karl Dorrell as football coach

LOS ANGELES -- Former UCLA wide receiver Karl Dorrell was hired Wednesday night as the Bruins' 15th head coach, becoming the fourth African-American coach in Division I.

In his third year as wide receivers coach for the Denver Broncos, the 39-year-old Dorrell succeeds Bob Toledo -- fired nine days earlier after seven years on the job.

Washington State hires Doba as coach

PULLMAN, Wash. -- Longtime defensive coordinator Bill Doba was hired Wednesday as football coach at Washington State following Mike Price's departure for Alabama.

The 62-year-old Doba has never been a college head coach. He was the last remaining member of the original staff Price hired when he arrived at Washington State in 1989.

Price will coach No. 7 Washington State in the Rose Bowl on Jan. 1 against No. 8 Oklahoma, athletic director Jim Sterk said.

Riley fined $50,000 for criticizing officials

NEW YORK -- Miami Heat coach Pat Riley was fined $50,000 by the NBA on Wednesday for saying game officials are being unfair to his team because of a ''dislike of me over the years.''

Riley made the comments after a 97-92 loss to the New York Knicks last week.

''We understand what the rules are,'' Riley said before Wednesday night's game in Boston. ''If you exercise freedom of speech and they don't like it, they come down hard on you.''

Sampras to play in 2003; will skip Australian Open

LOS ANGELES -- Pete Sampras plans to play in 2003, after skipping the Australian Open. The 31-year-old Sampras had left open the possibility that he might quit tennis after winning his record 14th Grand Slam tournament title at the U.S. Open in September.

Now he's decided to stay on the tour -- for the time being.

''I'm just going to see how it goes, just kind of ride the wave and see how far it takes me,'' Sampras told the Los Angeles Times for a story published Tuesday.

Michigan State pursuing Smith

LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- Michigan State has been given permission to talk to Louisville football coach John L. Smith about the Spartans' coaching vacancy.

The Cardinals were playing Marshall in the GMAC Bowl in Mobile, Ala., on Wednesday night. Louisville athletic director Tom Jurich, who was attending the game, was contacted by Michigan State about Smith.

Michigan State is seeking a successor to Bobby Williams, who was fired on Nov. 4 after a 4-8 season, the Spartans' worst record since 1991.

Donovan happy to stay in the USA

NEW YORK -- Landon Donovan is staying right at home, just the way he wanted.

The 20-year-old sensation, who scored two goals for the United States at the World Cup, didn't want to return to Germany, where Bayer Leverkusen owns his rights. Under an agreement finalized this week, the forward will remain with Major League Soccer through the 2004 season.

The German club then can either repurchase his rights, or decline the option, which would allow MLS to retain Donovan on a longterm contract.

Holyfield to have surgery on left shoulder

ATLANTA -- Evander Holyfield will have surgery on the left shoulder injured in the first round of his loss to Chris Byrd in their IBF heavyweight title fight. An MRI confirmed an acute tear of the super spinatis tendon of the rotator cuff, Holyfield's lawyer said Wednesday.

The extent of the damage cannot be determined until the surgery Saturday at Piedmont Hospital, attorney Jim Thomas said.

Byrd won a unanimous decision last Saturday over the former four-time heavyweight champion in Atlantic City, N.J. The 40-year-old Holyfield used his left hand sparingly against Byrd, and was credited with landing only three jabs against the new champion.

Bibby returns to practice

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) -- Mike Bibby returned to practice with the Sacramento Kings on Wednesday for the first time since breaking his right foot during the preseason.

Bibby said he expects to play Thursday night at home against San Antonio, but coach Rick Adelman said it could be a gametime decision.

The 6-foot-1 guard hasn't played this season since signing a seven-year, $80 million contract to remain with the Kings following his outstanding play during Sacramento's run to the Western Conference finals last season.

If he plays on Thursday, the Kings will have 12 active players for the first time this season. Peja Stojakovic, Hedo Turkoglu, Mateen Cleaves, Bobby Jackson and Lawrence Funderburke all recently returned from injury.

Bibby averaged 13.7 points and five assists last season.



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