October 25, 2012

LAWT Wire Service


The Dorsey High School football team, coaches and administrators celebrated this past Friday with Los Angeles real estate developer Sonny Astani and former Labor Leader, Martin Ludlow with a new state-of-the art weight room.

Astani made his donation to the Dorsey Football Boosters, a non-profit organization which was created by Ludlow to help purchase uniforms, medical supplies, training equipment and college-bound computer programs.  Astani’s donation enabled the boosters to completely renovate the school’s weight room. Now, student-athletes for the Dorsey Dons can work out with new free weights and gym equipment in a freshly-painted facility adorned with state-of-the-art flat screen televisions and audio systems. High school game films can now be assembled and viewed on a digital editing system.

“For years, Dorsey High student-athletes have worked out in an inferior facility,” said Dorsey Football Boosters founder Martin Ludlow. “With the monetary donation from Sonny Astani and the enthusiastic support of the principal and head coach, this renovated weight room is a symbol of progress, and it’s a show of support for the outstanding legacy of Dorsey High athletics.”

Astani added: “One of the joys of being able to help others is to witness the work of organizations like the Dorsey Football Boosters. I am proud to be associated with a group that’s dedicated to helping young men and women achieve success in life -- now and in the future.”

The ceremony on Friday in the weight room included Dorsey head coach Paul Knox and Dr. Reginald Sample, Dorsey principal.


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October 18, 2012

Associated Press


Connecticut’s Tina Charles was the leading vote-getter for the All-WNBA team, and Indiana’s Tamika Catchings earned her seventh first-team selection.

Catchings, a first-team pick for the fourth straight season, tied Seattle's Lauren Jackson and Phoenix's Diana Taurasi for second place on the career list with seven selections to the first team. Former Los Angeles star Lisa Leslie is the leader with eight.

Charles, who won her first MVP award, received 196 points from a national panel of writers and broadcasters. Joining Charles and Catchings on the first team were the Sparks’ Candace Parker, New York's Cappie Pondexter and Minnesota's Seimone Augustus.

The Lynx’s Maya Moore and Lindsay Whalen were selected to the second team, along with Chicago’s Sylvia Fowles, Los Angeles’ Kristi Toliver and San Antonio’s Sophia Young.

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October 18, 2012


Associated Press


The NFL is again urging a federal judge to avoid interfering in Commissioner Roger Goodell’s efforts to discipline four players for the Saints’ cash-for-hits bounty pool.

In a response to papers the players filed earlier this week, the NFL says its collective bargaining agreement with the players’ union gives Goodell the power to handle discipline involving conduct detrimental to football “at his discretion.”

U.S. District Judge Ginger Berrigan is considering the players’ request to overturn varying suspensions to Saints linebacker Jon Vilma (full season), Saints defensive end Will Smith (four games), free agent defensive lineman Anthony Hargrove (seven games) and Cleveland linebacker Scott Fujita (one game).

The players also want Berrigan to appoint a “neutral arbitrator” to handle any discipline in the matter.

The NFL argues that the players’ request “turns the CBA (and the law) on its head.”

“The parties agreed to trust in (the Commissioner’s) personal judgment,” the papers filed by the NFL said.

The players have argued Goodell’s public comments about the matter, dating to before he had even disciplined to the players, prove he cannot be impartial, and therefore has violated the players’ industrial due process rights, which are also an inherent part the league’s labor deal.

The NFL responded that the standard to prove partiality for an arbitrator within the framework of a labor agreement is much higher than for a judge in a court case. The league cited case law stating, “Nothing in the parties’ contract requires arbitrators to arrive with empty heads.”

The NFL also argued its evidence in the bounty matter is strong enough to justify the commissioner’s actions, whether he was partial to one side or not.

“When all of the circumstances are considered, it is clear that the reasonable observer would not have to conclude that ... the outcome is due to ‘bias,’” the NFL said. “The circumstances here include the fact that Plaintiffs do not dispute that the Saints program offered incentives for cart-offs and knockouts, and that cart-offs and knockouts were plays in which an opposing player was disabled or injured, at least temporarily.

“Not disputing that this program existed, Plaintiffs should not be heard to complain that an adverse appeal decision would have to be due to bias.”

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October 18, 2012

By DAVID GINSBURG Associated Press


Ray Lewis has been placed on injured reserve with the “designated to return” tag, which provides him the chance to play again this season.

Lewis tore his right triceps in Sunday’s game against Dallas. He was scheduled to undergo surgery on Wednesday.

His return this season is unlikely, but by being designated to return, the 37-year-old is eligible to come back in six weeks.

Coach John Harbaugh says, “We have no idea whether that time frame has anything to do with the injury, but there’s an opportunity and we’re going to keep the door open.”

The loss of Lewis was balanced somewhat by the return of linebacker Terrell Suggs, who practiced Wednesday for the first time this season. Suggs has been out with a torn right Achillies tendon.

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October 18, 2012


AP Sports Writer


Kentucky freshman forward Nerlens Noel has been cleared by the NCAA to play this season for the Wildcats.

NCAA spokesman Cameron Schuh said the 6-foot-10, 228-pound Noel was “cleared to practice and play” following a probe into the funding of unofficial visits to Kentucky.

Schuh did not provide any details or findings of the NCAA’s investigation.

Before the recent decision, Noel, considered the nation’s top recruit, could only practice after finishing summer classes to meet reclassification requirements.

Kentucky spokesman DeWayne Peevy said via text that the school does not confirm eligibility until competition begins.

The defending national champion Wildcats open Nov. 9 against Maryland at the Barclays Center Classic in Brooklyn, N.Y.

Kentucky coach John Calipari first revealed Noel’s status during an appearance on ESPN promoting the debut of the network’s all-access program about the Wildcats.

However, Calipari seemed confident during last week’s media day that Noel would be eligible, saying, “he will practice, and if we played tomorrow, he would play.”

Noel is part of Kentucky’s highly touted freshmen class including 7-footer Willie Cauley-Stein, guard Archie Goodwin and forward Alex Poythress.

His game has been compared to Anthony Davis, last year’s Final Four most outstanding player after leading the Wildcats to their eighth title. Davis went on to become the NBA’s top overall draft pick and win an Olympic gold medal with Team USA in London this summer.

Noel, who talked with Davis after arriving on campus, didn’t seem concerned about his eligibility last week.

“I’m not worrying about it at all,” he said. “I’m just focusing on getting better every day.”

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