Kathy Willens / AP


The NBA has eliminated the desire for teams to tank games in an effort to improve their chances for a No. 1 draft pick. The league has also made it tougher for coaches to rest their top players.

Each of the league's three worst teams will have a 14 percent chance of landing the No. 1 pick, beginning with the 2019 draft. The team with the worst record previously had a 25 percent shot of winning the lottery and could fall to the No. 4 spot in the draft. Now, that team call tumble all the way to fifth.

Darron Cummings / AP


The University of Miami president says a member of the coaching staff is being investigated as part of the federal probe of basketball recruiting at seven universities.

President Julio Frenk says the U.S. Attorney's Office has confirmed it is investigating a potential tie to a Miami coach and recruit. Frenk says school officials are "alarmed and disappointed" by the development.

An attorney for head coach Jim Larranaga says Larranaga has no involvement with any accusations in the investigation. The attorney says Larranaga will continue to lead the Hurricanes.

Among several allegations, federal prosecutors say at least three top high school recruits were promised payments of as much as $150,000, using money supplied by Adidas, to attend two universities sponsored by the athletic shoe company. Court papers didn't name those schools but contained enough details to identify them as Miami and Louisville.

Louisville has placed coach Rick Pitino and athletic director Tom Jurich on administrative leave.


College basketball is facing a major scandal involving several schools and a major manufacturer of sports apparel.

Federal prosecutors have announced charges of fraud and corruption in college hoops, including against four assistant basketball coaches from Arizona, Auburn, Southern Calif and Oklahoma State.

Baseball player Aaron Judge
flickr: apardavila


Aaron Judge set a major league rookie record for home runs while the New York Yankees prevented the Boston Red Sox from moving closer to their second straight AL East title.

Judge slammed his 49th and 50th homers while collecting three RBIs in the New York Yankees' 11-3 pounding of Kansas City. He hit a two-run shot in the third before his seventh-inning blast topped the rookie mark of 49 home runs set by Oakland's Mark McGwire in 1987.


Jordan Howard has led the Chicago Bears to their first win in nine September games over three seasons under coach John Fox.

Howard had 138 of Chicago's 220 yards rushing and scored the winning touchdown in overtime to give the Bears a 23-17 triumph over the Steelers. He raced 19 yards for the game-ending TD 7:33 into the extra period after rookie Tarik Cohen initially appeared to score on a 73-yard burst. Cohen was ruled out of bounds at the Pittsburgh 37, but Howard's run dropped the Steelers' all-time record in Chicago to 1-13.

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A lawyer for Aaron Hernandez says the brain of the former Patriots tight end showed severe signs of the degenerative disease chronic traumatic encephalopathy. CTE can be caused by repeated head trauma and leads to symptoms like violent mood swings, depression and other cognitive difficulties. Hernandez killed himself in April in the jail cell where he was serving a life-without-parole sentence for a 2013 murder.

Syracuse Football
Flickr: matt_the_w


Syracuse University and the University at Albany have agreed to a future non-conference football game, the schools announced in a joint release today. The Orange will host the Great Danes at the Carrier Dome in the first-ever meeting between the programs to open the 2021 season.


Matthew Stafford put up modest numbers against the New York Giants on Monday night, but they were more than enough the way the Detroit Lions' defense and special teams were playing.

Stafford completed 15 of his 21 passes for 122 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions as the Lions thumped the Giants, 24-10 at the Meadowlands. Stafford's scoring throws came in the first half, including a seven-yard pass to Eric Ebron that put Detroit ahead to stay.


If Tom Brady and the Patriots were suffering from a Super Bowl hangover, it looks as though a trip to New Orleans pulled the defending champions out of it. The 40-year-old Brady hasn't often looked better in his long, illustrious career. Bouncing back with a vengeance from a season-opening loss, Brady threw three touchdown passes in the first quarter for the first time in his career, eclipsed 300 yards passing in the first half for only the second time, and New England scored 30 first-half points en route to a 36-20 victory over the winless Saints.


The New York Giants could have their top deep threat on the field for Monday's game against the Detroit Lions.

Wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. practiced on a limited basis Thursday for the first time since spraining his left ankle more than three weeks ago. The three-time Pro Bowler took part in some individualized drills and followed that by participating in some team drills.


Just a few hundred feet from the Rock and Rock Hall of Fame, the Cleveland Indians cut a record.

The Indians have set an American League mark with their 21st consecutive victory, 5-3 over the Tigers in Cleveland. The Tribe broke the previous AL record set by the 2002 Athletics.

flickr: Keith Allison


The NFL is moving quickly in hopes of reversing a federal judge's decision that blocked the league's six-game suspension of Dallas running back Ezekiel Elliott in a domestic violence case in Ohio.

The league has asked the judge who ruled in Elliott's favor to stop the preliminary injunction that cleared last year's NFL rushing leader to play while the case is in court. A notice of appeal was also filed with the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans.


The Green Bay Packers could be a lot more than an offensive juggernaut this season.

The Packers gave up no touchdowns and turned a big defensive play into a score to earn a 17-9 win over the Seahawks. Seattle had to settle for three field goals and finished with just 225 net yards, with Russell Wilson completing 14 of 27 passes for 158 yards.


The Kansas City Chiefs have opened their season by knocking off the defending Super Bowl champs.

Alex Smith and rookie Kareem Hunt led an offense that shredded the Patriots in a 42-27 win at New England.

Smith threw a pair of long touchdown passes and Hunt scored three times after fumbling on his first NFL carry. Smith was 28 of 35 passing for 368 yards and four TDs.

Roger Federer


Roger Federer was unable to set up his first U.S. Open match against Rafael Nadal.

Federer lost in the quarterfinals to Juan Martin del Potro in four sets.

The U.S. Open is the only Grand Slam tournament where Federer and Nadal have never met. Del Potro will face Nadal in the semifinals.

Mark McGuire of The Daily Gazette and Keith Strudler of Montclair State University join Vox Pop to discuss sports including the NFL, MLB and more. WAMC's Ray Graf hosts.


With Hurricane Irma bearing down on South Florida, the Miami Marlins are allowing families of players and staff to travel with the team on their upcoming road trip.

The Marlins host the Nationals tonight and Wednesday before embarking on a seven-game road trip to Atlanta and Philadelphia.

The National Hurricane Center says Irma has been upgraded to a Category 5 storm, the strongest hurricane in the Atlantic basin on record.


Hurricane Irma could alter the NFL's opening-week schedule.

A person familiar with the discussions tells The Associated Press the league is considering moving Sunday's Dolphins-Buccaneers game in Miami to another site or playing it earlier this week because of the hurricane. The person says the game could be held Thursday or Friday with Irma expected to threaten South Florida over the weekend. Kickoff is scheduled for 1 p.m. EDT Sunday.

Tennis Player Venus Williams
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Venus Williams passed her first difficult test in reaching the U.S. Open quarterfinals for the second time in three years.

The 37-year-old Williams was extended to a third set before completing a 6-3, 3-6, 6-1 victory over Carla Suarez Navarro. The ninth seed is trying to get to her third Grand Slam final of the season.


In pre-season NFL football action, Josh McCown and New York's first-team offense got the start in the preseason finale as the Jets beat the Philadelphia Eagles 16-10 last night. The 38-year-old McCown, who hadn't played since the opening series of preseason against Tennessee, took a shot to his chest after completing a 20-yard pass to Austin Seferian-Jenkins with 7:13 left in the opening quarter. But he just had the wind knocked out of him.

Houston Astros MinuteMaid Park
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The Astros plan to host the Mets in a three-game series that will begin on Saturday.

The Astros had to relocate their current series against the Rangers to St. Petersburg, Florida, following the catastrophic flooding in the wake of Hurricane Harvey. The team will be back in Houston following its finale with Texas on Thursday.

A doubleheader with the Mets is planned for Saturday, followed by a single game on Sunday before the Astros hit the road for a 10-game trip.

Houston Astros MinuteMaid Park
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Hurricane Harvey has forced both the Houston Astros and Houston Texans to play home games miles away from the flood-stricken city. Players are now beginning to wonder when they will be able to come back.

New York Yankees stadium
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The New York Yankees have shaved another game off the Boston Red Sox's lead in the American League East.

The Yankees spotted the Mariners an early lead before scoring six times on five errors in the first inning of a 10-1 rout of Seattle. Jacoby Ellsbury, Greg Bird and Chase Headley drove in two runs apiece, while Starlin Castro went 4-for-4 with an RBI and two runs scored.

Lucas Willard / WAMC


Tomorrow marks the biggest racing day at Saratoga race Course, the 148th annual Travers stakes. The horses to beat are Kentucky derby winner Always Dreaming, Preakness champ Cloud Computing and Belmont winner Tapwrit. The grade I race for 3-year-olds has a post time of 5:44 PM Saturday. The purse is a huge $1.25 million, with $670,000 to be awarded to the winner’s owner.

Colin Kaepernick
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— The NAACP wants a meeting with NFL commissioner Roger Goodell to discuss the fate of Colin Kaepernick. The former San Francisco 49ers quarterback who refused to stand for the national anthem is a free agent now, and no club has signed him.

Kyrie Irving
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The Cleveland Cavaliers and Boston Celtics are giving NBA fans another reason to tune in for their season-opening clash on Oct. 17.

The Cavs are shipping Kyrie Irving to the Celts for Isaiah Thomas in a blockbuster trade of All-Star guards. Cleveland also gets forward Jae Crowder, center Ante Zizic and a 2018 first-round draft pick.

Odell Beckham Jr.
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The New York Giants' exhibition season has gotten serious.

Star wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. hurt his left leg during Monday night's game against Cleveland when he took a legal-but-questionable hit on the knee from Browns cornerback Briean Boddy-Calhoun.

Dr. Keith Strudler
Montclair State University

We’re going to talk now with a familiar voice on WAMC for more than a decade: sports commentator Keith Strudler. Each Wednesday afternoon, Strudler has weighed in on the intersection of sports and society, tackling everything from the NFL’s concussion crisis to the corruption of youth sports. With a PhD in Mass Communication from the University of Florida, Strudler founded the Center for Sports Communication at Marist College in Poughkeepsie. This fall, he’s starting a new job as the Director of the School of Communication and Media at Montclair State University in New Jersey. Don’t worry: he’s staying on as WAMC’s sports commentator. But we wanted to catch up about the job and the world of sports in the meantime.

Curtis Granderson
flickr: slgckgc

The Los Angeles Dodgers have acquired outfielder Curtis Granderson and cash from the New York Mets for a player to be named later or cash.

The teams announced the deal after their games Friday night. The 36-year-old Granderson is hitting .228 with 19 home runs and 52 RBIs this year.

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— The Boston Red Sox's principal owner says he wants to take steps to rename a Fenway Park street that has been an enduring reminder of the franchise's complicated racial past. John Henry told the Boston Herald that he is "haunted" by the racist legacy of former owner Tom Yawkey and that he welcomes renaming of Yawkey Way in front of the ballpark and offices.