Around the Nation (Feb. 16): Former Ohio St. coaches, players honor Woody Hayes

Associated Press Published:

ASSOCIATED PRESS

FOOTBALL

Ohio State coaches, players honor Hayes

COLUMBUS -- Former Ohio State players and coaches were among the 1,000 people who gathered in Columbus to pay tribute to legendary football coach Woody Hayes.

The event Friday night came as the university marked the 100th anniversary of Hayes' birth this week.

Former Ohio State coach Earle Bruce and Hayes' former players including Archie Griffin, Rex Kern and Jeff Logan shared stories about the coach who won 13 Big Ten titles in his 28 years.

Also at the event were former Buckeye greats John Hicks and Paul Warfield.

Earlier this week, an 8-foot-tall bronze statue of Hayes went up outside the athletic center that bears his name.

Mich. State says offensive coord. leaving to join Saints

METAIRIE, La. -- The New Orleans Saints have hired Michigan State offensive coordinator Dan Roushar to coach running backs and reassigned Bret Ingalls to overseeing the offensive line.

In a move announced by the team on Saturday, Ingalls takes over an offensive line that had worked since 2008 under Aaron Kromer, who left after the 2012 season to become Chicago's offensive coordinator.

Ingalls has coached the offensive line at several college stops, including his most recent at Northwestern from 2006-08 before joining New Orleans.

Roushar, who spent six seasons at Michigan State, says in a statement released by the school that moving to the Saints is an opportunity he can't pass up, but he also thinks Michigan State is poised to have a "tremendous" 2013 season.

AUTO RACING

Danica posts fastest time at Daytona prac.

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- Danica Patrick was fastest on the first day of Daytona 500 practice.

Patrick turned a lap of 196.220 mph in the second of Saturday's two practice sessions. The sessions were focused solely on qualifying for the Daytona 500.

Tony Stewart, her teammate and car owner, was second fastest with a lap at 195.363 mph.

Kyle Busch was third, Dale Earnhardt Jr. fourth and Jamie McMurray fifth as Chevrolets took four of the top five spots.

Juan Pablo Montoya's engine blew during the second practice.

BASKETBALL

Hunter voted out as head of NBA players' union

HOUSTON -- Billy Hunter has been unanimously voted out as executive director of the NBA players' association.

President Derek Fisher says Saturday was a day of change for the union, which has been building since a review of the union last month was critical of Hunter's leadership and urged players to consider whether they wanted to keep him.

In brief remarks, Fisher says, "We want to make it clear that we are here to serve only the best interests of the players."

Hunter had led the union since 1996 and his attorneys have indicated there could be a legal challenge if he was removed.

BASEBALL

Bailey, Reds agree to $5.35M contract

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Right-hander Homer Bailey and the Cincinnati Reds have agreed to a $5.35 million, one-year contract, ensuring baseball will set a record low for arbitration hearings.

No cases have been argued before three-person panels this year among the 133 players who filed for arbitration last month and just two remain scheduled for hearings next week: San Diego left-hander Clayton Richard and Baltimore reliever Darren O'Day.

O'Day and the Orioles have an agreement on a $5.8 million, two-year contract that is pending a physical. Richard has asked for a raise from $2.705,000 to $5.5 million and has been offered $4,905,000 after he went 14-14 with a 3.99 ERA last tear.

Baseball's previous record low was three hearings, set in 2005 and matched in 2009 and 2011. The high was 35 in 1986.

Bailey's deal was announced Saturday.

TENNIS

Serena reaches Qatar Open final by beating Sharapova once again

DOHA, Qatar -- A day after regaining the No. 1 ranking, Serena Williams defeated Maria Sharapova 6-3, 6-2 Saturday to reach the Qatar Open final. Williams has beaten Sharapova 10 straight times.

Williams will play for the title against Victoria Azarenka, whom she will replace at the top of the new rankings Monday. Azarenka beat Agnieszka Radwanska 6-3, 6-3 in the other semifinal.

Williams had been inconsistent for much of the week but was dominant Saturday. She broke Sharapova to go up 4-2 and had a love service game on the way to winning the first set.

Sharapova came out stronger in the second set and had a chance to pull in front 2-0. But Williams saved the break point and broke the third-ranked Russian to lead 2-1. She broke again for 5-2.

GOLF

Haas shoots 64 to take lead at Riviera

LOS ANGELES -- Bill Haas had no reason to think this round at Riviera was going to be anything special.

With an iron in his hand, he failed to make birdie on the par-5 opening hole, the easiest on the golf course. Solid iron shots led to a pair of birdies on the front nine, and with Riviera playing tough in warm, dry conditions on Saturday, he was part of a large group challenging for the lead.

Three holes changed everything.

Haas made a tough 30-footer for birdie on No. 9. He pitched in from 60 feet for eagle on the scary par-4 10th. And he hit a good bunker shot with little margin for error on the par-5 11th that set up a birdie.

Just like that, he was on his way to a 7-under 64 and a three-shot lead going into the final round of the Northern Trust Open.

His 64 was the best round of a difficult day by three shots, and it was nearly eight shots better than the average score. It put Haas at 12-under 201, leaving him in good position to become only the eighth back-to-back winner in the 76-year history of this tournament.

All he cares about Sunday is winning.

"It's very difficult in this game to just pull away from the rest of the field," Haas said. "You've only seen a few guys ever really do that, and those are guys like Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson. So I think I've just got to stay in the moment, don't let my emotions get the best of me."

Former Kent State University star Ben Curtis shot a third-round 72 and sits at 1-under heading into the final day's action. He shot a 68 on Thursday and 72 on Friday.

A year ago, Haas was two shots behind going into the final round and wound up winning in a playoff over Mickelson and Keegan Bradley. This time, he has a comfortable margin over U.S. Open champion Webb Simpson and former Masters champion Charl Schwartzel, who each thought they did well for a 68.

John Merrick bogeyed the 18th hole for a 70 and joined Simpson and Schwartzel at 9-under 204.

Luke Donald overcame a sloppy start -- three bogeys in a six-hole stretch -- with four birdies on the back nine to salvage a 70 that put him four shots behind, along with Fredrik Jacobson (72).

Mickelson was hopeful of making a move and instead went the other direction. He missed three par putts of about 6 feet on the front nine and had a 72, putting him nine shots behind. Ernie Els, playing with Mickelson, also dropped shots early and dropped out of the hunt with a 73.

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