Tuesday's Sports in Brief
CHICAGO (AP) The BCS commissioners backed a four-team playoff plan with the sites for the national semifinals rotating among the major bowl games and a selection committee picking the teams.
The plan announced Wednesday will be presented to university presidents for approval next week.
Once the presidents sign off - and that seems likely - major college football's champion will be decided by a playoff for the first time starting in 2014.
IN THE COURTS
BELLEFONTE, Pa. (AP) - The defense in Jerry Sandusky's child sex abuse trial rested on its third day Wednesday without calling the former Penn State assistant coach to dispute charges that he molested boys at his home and on campus over more than a decade.
Closing arguments were set for Thursday in the case that led to the dismissal of Hall of Fame football coach Joe Paterno, the ouster of the university president and a re-examination of college administrators' role in reporting abuse charges.
NEW YORK (AP) - Painter and sketch artist LeRoy Neiman, best known for evoking the kinetic energy of the world's biggest sporting and leisure events with bright quick strokes, died at age 91.
Neiman was the official painter of five Olympiads and was a contributing artist at Playboy magazine for many years. His longtime publicist, Gail Parenteau, confirmed his death at a Manhattan hospital but didn't disclose the cause.
MANILA, Philippines (AP) - Manny Pacquiao says he wants a rematch with Timothy Bradley after a five-judge panel assembled by the WBO championship committee unanimously favored the Filipino fighter in a video review.
Pacquiao said he would prefer a rematch rather than Bradley giving up the WBO welterweight title that he won on a split decision because ``people may think I just usurped it.''
LAS VEGAS (AP) - Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin won the Hart Trophy as the NHL's most valuable player.
The Russian superstar and NHL scoring champion won the Hart for the first time at the NHL Awards ceremony at the Wynn Las Vegas casino. Malkin also collected the Art Ross Trophy as the league's top scorer and the Ted Lindsay Award from his fellow NHLPA members as the NHL's best player.
``It's the best day of my life,'' Malkin said. ``It's very exciting.''
New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist won the Vezina Trophy in his fourth nomination, topping an impressive list of Swedish winners at the awards ceremony. Ottawa's Erik Karlsson won the Norris Trophy as the NHL's top defenseman, and Colorado's Gabriel Landeskog won the Calder Trophy as the top rookie.
Boston forward Patrice Bergeron won the Selke Trophy as the NHL's top defensive forward. Florida's Brian Campbell became the first defenseman since 1954 to win the Lady Byng Trophy for sportsmanlike play, and Montreal forward Max Pacioretty won the Masterton Trophy for his comeback from serious injury.
St. Louis' Ken Hitchcock won the Jack Adams Trophy as the NHL's top coach for the first time in his lengthy career, while Blues general manager Doug Armstrong was named the league's top executive.
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - Three-time national champion Connecticut and nine other men's basketball teams were banned from the NCAA tournament because of poor Academic Progress Rate scores.
The penalties affect seven conferences, each of which must adapt to a new landscape for their league tournaments. Four conferences - the Big East, Big West, Ohio Valley, Southland and Southwest Athletic - said the banned teams cannot compete in their league tournaments.
Joining the Huskies on the sideline next March will be Arkansas-Pine Bluff, California-Riverside, Cal State Bakersfield, Jacksonville State, Mississippi Valley State, North Carolina-Wilmington, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, Toledo and Towson.
Cal State Bakersfield, which became a full-fledged Division I member in 2010-11 and doesn't have a conference affiliation in basketball, could be removed from the banned list because some of the school's data is still being reviewed.
NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Saints assistant head coach Joe Vitt says a piece of evidence recently made public in the NFL's bounty investigation falsely portrays him pledging $5,000 for knocking then Minnesota quarterback Brett Favre out of the 2010 NFC title game.
In a statement issued by the Saints, Vitt said he has never pledged money for any type of performance incentives, let alone the cash-for-hits bounty program that the NFL says the Saints ran from 2009-11 under former defensive coordinator Gregg Williams.
EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. (AP) - Percy Harvin was nowhere to be found at the Minnesota Vikings' mandatory minicamp practice after reportedly requesting a trade from the team that drafted him in the first round in 2009.
Harvin is unhappy with several issues, according to a person with knowledge of the situation who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the issue.
After participating in a light walk-through in the morning with his teammates, Harvin wasn't present for the full afternoon practice.
Vikings general manager Rick Spielman said the organization considers Harvin a cornerstone player and will work to resolve any issues that have upset him.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois, the No. 2 Senate Democrat, called off a proposed hearing on bounties in professional sports because he is satisfied with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell's response to the issue, including setting up an anonymous hotline.
Durbin met with Goodell about three months after he first said he wanted Congress to examine whether federal law should make it a crime to have a bounty system such as the one the NFL says the New Orleans Saints ran from 2009-11.
NEW ORLEANS (AP) - The New Orleans Hornets traded forward Trevor Ariza and center Emeka Okafor to the Washington Wizards for forward Rashard Lewis and a second-round draft pick.
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) - The Orlando Magic hired Rob Hennigan to be their new general manager.
Hennigan spent the past four seasons with Oklahoma City, including the past two seasons as the Thunder's assistant general manager/player personnel. Before that Hennigan spent four seasons with the San Antonio Spurs.
PHILADELPHIA (AP) - Colorado Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki will have surgery on his left groin area on Thursday.
Rockies manager Jim Tracy says a timetable for Tulowitzki's return won't be known until he has the surgery. The operation will be performed by Dr. William Meyers in Philadelphia.
BERLIN (AP) - Chancellor Angela Merkel will travel to see Germany's European Championship quarterfinal match against Greece - a game that brings together nations at opposite ends of Europe's debt crisis.
Germany, Europe's biggest economy, has been a major contributor to international bailouts for Greece and was instrumental in demanding structural reforms and hugely unpopular spending cuts in return. Merkel is not a popular figure for Greeks, to say the least.
WARSAW, Poland (AP) - FIFA President Sepp Blatter called goal-line technology a ``necessity'' only hours after Ukraine was denied what appeared to be a legitimate goal in its must-win match against England at the European Championship.
Marko Devic's shot in the 62nd minute of Tuesday's match looped up off England goalkeeper Joe Hart and appeared to cross the goal line before it was cleared by defender John Terry. The official standing near the post didn't signal for a goal, leaving the referee no option but to play on.
FEDERAL WAY, Wash. (AP) - Kristian Ipsen missed only one dive in advancing to the 3-meter springboard final with the top score at the U.S. Olympic trials.
He led throughout the six-round semifinal, scoring 993.80 points and putting more distance between him and synchro partner Troy Dumais, who is bidding to join Greg Louganis as the only American men to make four Olympic diving teams.
Dumais totaled 954.20 after missing two dives. Scores carry over to Sunday's final.
MADRID (AP) - Rafael Nadal will carry the flag for the Spanish Olympic team at the London Games.
The 11-time Grand Slam champion was chosen by the Spanish Olympic Committee to lead the team at the opening ceremony July 27.
ASCOT, England (AP) - So You Think won the Prince of Wales's Stakes at Royal Ascot ahead of Carlton House, the horse owned by Queen Elizabeth II.
LONDON (AP) - Five-time champion Venus Williams and four-time Grand Slam winner Kim Clijsters are unseeded at Wimbledon for the first time in more than a decade.
The seedings were announced for the Grand Slam tournament that starts Monday, with top-ranked defending champion Novak Djokovic heading the men's list and Maria Sharapova leading the women's - both for the first time.
EASTBOURNE, England (AP) - Andy Roddick reached the quarterfinals of the Eastbourne tennis championships, needing eight match points to overpower Jeremy Chardy 6-2, 7-6 (6).
DEN BOSCH, Netherlands (AP) - Top-seeded David Ferrer beat Leonardo Mayer 6-3, 6-1 to reach the Unicef Open quarterfinals.