T25 COLLEGE BASKETBALL-LATEST SCORES
Georgetown and Syracuse, one more time
UNDATED (AP) — Syracuse is bolting the Big East for the ACC next season. Georgetown is staying but will meet the Orange one more time in that heated college basketball rivalry
Otto Porter Jr. scored 18 points and No. 5 Georgetown advanced to the Big East tournament semifinal with a 62-43 win over Cincinnati. Markel Starks had 14 points and D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera added 13 off the bench, including a tiebreaking 3-pointer that sparked a game-turning run for the top-seeded Hoyas, who are 25-5.
Georgetown, looking to land a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament, squandered an early 16-point cushion and fell behind briefly in the second half before clamping down with its trademark defense to pull away.
Meanwhile, James Southerland and Michael Carter-Williams kept Syracuse's run at one more Big East title going as the 19th-ranked Orange beat No. 17 Pittsburgh 62-59 to advance to a semifinal date with the Hoyas.
In other tournament action involving AP Top-25 teams:
— Trey Burke scored 21 points and the sixth-ranked Michigan Wolverines beat Penn State 83-66 in the first round of the Big Ten tournament, avenging a shocking loss during the regular season.
— Ben McLemore scored 24 points to lead No. 7 Kansas to a 91-63 rout of Texas Tech on Thursday, setting up an intriguing date with Iowa State in the semifinals of the Big 12 tournament.
— Freshman Shabazz Muhammad scored 12 of his 16 points in the second half, Travis Wear hit a jumper with 11 seconds left and No. 21 UCLA rallied from a 15-point deficit to beat Arizona State 80-75 in the quarterfinals of the Pac-12 tournament.
Chiefs cancel Cassel
UNDATED (AP) — Matt Cassel's (KA'-sehlz) rocky career in Kansas City has come to an abrupt ending. The Chiefs have released their former starting quarterback with two years left on his contract.
The decision to cut ties with Cassel came one day after Alex Smith was introduced after being acquired in a trade with San Francisco.
Meanwhile, Kansas City has agreed to terms with cornerback Sean Smith on a three-year deal to help shore up the secondary. He has spent the past four seasons with the Miami Dolphins, starting every game each of the past two years.
— Houston is making a big pitch for free agent safety Ed Reed. The team said on its Twitter site that general manager Rick Smith is flying to pick up the Ravens star in a private jet owned by team owner Bob McNair for talks today.
— Minnesota is set to talk with wide receiver Greg Jennings. He's the latest Green Bay free agent to be pursued by their NFC North rival.
— The Washington Redskins have signed free agent offensive lineman Jeremy Trueblood to contend for the vacant right tackle position. Trueblood has started 84 games over seven NFL seasons, all with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He lost his starting job after one game last year and finished the season on injured reserve.
Tuck rule could go...Broncos safety in hot water in Vegas
UNDATED (AP) — The tuck rule could disappear from NFL games if owners approve a proposal from the competition committee to dump it.
The owners also will consider a change to instant replay rules allowing for a video review even when a coach makes an illegal challenge. The league meetings are next week in Phoenix.
If a passer is in the act of bringing the ball down into his body rather than throwing it and loses control, it has been ruled an incomplete pass under the tuck rule. The proposal would make it a fumble.
In other NFL news:
— Denver Broncos safety Quinton Carter is facing felony charges in Nevada alleging that he cheated at a craps game last weekend at a Las Vegas-area casino. Carter, 24, was arrested late Saturday at the Texas Station casino in North Las Vegas after security officials reported he was videotaped adding a $5 chip to three bets after the dice already rolled, according to a police report.
Kobe Bryant tries to hurry back from ankle injury...League admits officials missed call
UNDATED (AP) — Kobe Bryant has received several hours of treatment on his severely sprained left ankle in hopes of a speedy return to the Lakers line-up. The All-Star guard suffered what he called the worst sprain of his 16-year career late in the Lakers loss to Atlanta Wednesday night. Bryant tweeted the ankle was very swollen today. The team says he's out indefinitely.
Bryant has been playing some of his best basketball since the All-Star break, almost single-handedly pushing the Los Angeles Lakers into the playoff race.
While X-rays were negative, the Lakers sounded pessimistic about Bryant's chances of playing anytime soon. They're nursing a half-game lead over Utah for the final playoff spot in the Western Conference.
Meanwhile, the NBA says officials missed a foul call when Bryant was injured.
The Los Angeles Lakers star complained he was fouled when he landed on the foot of the Hawks' Dahntay Jones with seconds left in the Lakers' 96-92 loss Wednesday night.
The league posted a statement on its web site today that said "video replay confirmed that referees missed a foul call on Jones as he challenged Bryant's shot and did not give him the opportunity to land cleanly back on the floor. Bryant should have been granted two free throws."
What's up with the Spurs?
UNDATED (AP) — They have the best record in the NBA's Western Conference, but the San Antonio Spurs has posted a couple of stinkers in their last three games. They're hoping to get things right when they host Dallas tonight as part of an abbreviated two-game schedule.
The Spurs got pounded by 24 points by lowly Minnesota Tuesday night which followed a stunning 30-point blowout at the hands of Portland Friday. Sandwiched between was a win over fellow Western Conference powerhouse Oklahoma City.
The Spurs were without Tim Duncan and Kawhi Leonard for the Timberwolves debacle. Both players had sore knees. Coach Gregg Popovich could have just been giving them a mid-season rest and it wouldn't be a surprise to see both back in the line-up, healthy tonight.
Dallas has won four in a row and trails the Lakers by 2½ games for the final playoff spot in the Western Conference.
Portland is a game back of Dallas as the Trail Blazers head into tonight's home game against the Atlantic Division-leading Knicks who are nursing a game-and-a-half lead over Brooklyn.
Owners OK realignment
NEW YORK (AP) — NHL owners have signed off on realignment for next season, sending Detroit and Columbus to the Eastern Conference.
The new format will feature two eight-team divisions in the Eastern Conference, and two seven-team divisions in the West.
That means Detroit and Columbus will switch conferences by moving into the East, while the Winnipeg Jets will move into the Western Conference.
The top three seeds in each division will qualify for the playoffs. The next two teams with the best records in each conference will earn wild-card playoff berths.
The NHL Players' Association signed off on the realignment format, which will be in place for at least three seasons.
Kings, Staples Center company off market
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Billionaire Philip Anschutz (AN'-shoots) says he is pulling AEG off the market and the company that owns the Los Angeles Kings and the Staples Center is no longer for sale.
Anschutz says in a statement that he had made clear that he wouldn't sell the company unless the right buyer came forward.
AEG's holdings also include the Los Angeles Galaxy, part-ownership of the NBA's Los Angeles Lakers, and major entertainment and real estate holdings in Los Angeles.
AEG also is spearheading a stadium proposal to bring back a professional football team to Los Angeles.
Charlie wants to stay
CLEARWATER, Fla. (AP) — Charlie Manuel says he has no plans to retire after this season and wants to continue managing the Philadelphia Phillies.
Manuel, the franchise's all-time leader in wins, is entering the final season of his contract and it's widely assumed that the team's new third base coach, Ryne Sandberg will eventually replace him.
Manuel told The Associated Press that he still wants to manage and isn't ready to get out of the game.
Manuel has led the Phillies to five straight NL East titles, two pennants and the 2008 World Series title. The postseason streak ended last year when the Phillies couldn't overcome a slew of injuries and finished 81-81.
Cards skipper rejoins team
JUPITER, Fla. (AP) — Cardinals manager Mike Matheny has returned to the club after undergoing back surgery Monday in St. Louis.
Matheny was beset with severe pain for several days, stemming from a ruptured disc in his back that caused particles to come into contact with a nerve. Surgeons found and removed four particles during a 90-minute procedure.
Matheny says he notice an improvement almost immediately.
PGA-TAMPA BAY CHAMPIONSHIP
Donald defending title
PALM HARBOR, Fla. (AP) — Tag Ridings and Brendan Steele survived surprisingly cold conditions to shot matching 3-under 68's and share the clubhouse lead in the first round of the Tampa Bay Championship.
Temperatures were in the lower 50s on Thursday morning, and it felt even colder in a strong wind.
Defending champion Luke Donald was 4-under for the round until dropping three shots on the last four holes for a 70. Even so, only 10 others from the 78 players who teed off in the morning broke par.
Past champions Vijay Singh and K.J. Choi were among those at 69, while Ryo Ishikawa was at 71.
High school coaching great dies
NEW YORK (AP) — Jack Curran, among the nation's winningest high school coaches in basketball and baseball, has died. He was 83.
His death has been confirmed by Archbishop Molloy High School in Queens, where he coached for more than a half century. The school said the family has yet to release further information, but more details are to come later in the day.
Curran had been weakened by lung and kidney problems and fell on the ice last month.
Among the players he coached at Archbishop Malloy who went on to the NBA were Brian Winters, Kevin Joyce and Kenny Anderson.