Pro basketballYoungest NBA players may begin season...

THE BALTIMORE SUN

Pro basketball

Youngest NBA players may begin season on injured reserve

The debut of the two youngest players in NBA history may take a week or two.

Kobe Bryant won't play for the Los Angeles Lakers before the third game of the season at the earliest, and he might be placed on the injured list today. And Jermaine O'Neal of the Portland Trail Blazers will definitely begin the season on the injured list. Bryant, who turned 18 on Aug. 23, has a strained left hip flexor.

O'Neal, also 18, must sit out five games while he recovers from a sprained left knee.

Bullets: The team cut its roster to 15 by releasing guard Bernard Blunt. He joined the team as a free agent on Oct. 16 and averaged 4.0 points, 1.0 rebounds and 1.5 assists.

NBA: The Board of Governors approved a plan to provide up to $3 million per year of financial assistance to between five and eight low-revenue teams.

Boxing

Morrison opponent wanted in Oklahoma warrants

A new opponent was quickly found for HIV-infected heavyweight Tommy Morrison, and it appears he'll be a much more difficult foe than the one Morrison was supposed to meet in Tokyo this weekend. Anthony Cooks, originally scheduled to fight Morrison, returned to Oklahoma and turned himself in to law enforcement authorities. There was a warrant for Cooks in Okmulgee, Okla., on a complaint he raped a 15-year-old on Oct. 19. There also was a warrant for Cooks for failing to appear for a jury trial on a charge of intent to distribute cocaine and marijuana. Promoter Ron Weathers said Morrison (45-3-1) will instead fight Marcus Rhode of St. Joseph, Mo.

Colleges

Texas won't start four who met with an agent

The University of Texas has told the Big 12 Conference and NCAA it is probing a report that four football players may have met with an agent.

According to a source close to the university, the investigation centers on a reported meeting Sunday at an Austin hotel that included Texas receiver Mike Adams, safeties Tre Thomas and Chris Carter, and cornerback Bryant Westbrook. The players will not start against Baylor.

UMBC basketball: Freshman forward Kennedy Okafor had surgery Monday to repair a small avulsion fracture in his right knee. He will miss 8-10 weeks.

UMBC soccer: Senior midfielder Olivier Bityeki scored late in the first half, and goalkeeper C. J. Norton recorded his eighth career shutout as UMBC (7-8-1) edged St. Francis (Pa.) (3-14) by 1-0 in a non-conference game that ended two minutes early because of a fight between two players.

Maryland soccer: Cindy Parlow scored two goals as No. 2 North Carolina toppled No. 8 Maryland, 5-0, in Chapel Hill, N.C., to clinch the Atlantic Coast Conference regular-season title. The Tar Heels (16-1) outshot the Terps, 25-2, for their eighth straight win. It was the second shutout of Maryland (16-2-2) this season.

Commitments: Three Boys' Latin senior lacrosse players have orally committed to college scholarships. All-Metro midfielder Greg Patchak, last year's Baltimore Sun All-City/County Player of the Year, is headed for Duke, and Aaron Vercollone, another All-Metro midfielder, along with attackman Ian Shure will attend Virginia.

SAT help: On Nov. 9 at a free all-day session, area high school student-athletes can receive help in preparing for the Scholastic Assessment Test along with clarifications on the NCAA's new requirements for freshman eligibility. For more information, call 1-800-2REVIEW.

Et cetera

Spirit waives Brad Smith; City-Poly tickets on sale

The Spirit placed forward Brad Smith on waivers. Smith, 31, has not appeared in a regular-season game after being the Spirit's ninth-leading scorer in 1995-96 with 33 points. "Brad did a good job for us, but we have a number of forwards and I don't think it would be fair to keep Brad around if he wasn't playing regularly," Spirit coach Mike Stankovic said.

City-Poly tickets: Tickets for the annual City-Poly football game, scheduled for 1 p.m. Nov. 9 at Memorial Stadium, are on sale at the athletic offices at the schools. Tickets are $5 in advance and $7 at the gate.

Pro tennis: Pete Sampras and Boris Becker lost their opening matches at the Paris Open, with Becker denouncing the arena as a "zoo" and "madhouse." Marc Rosset had 20 aces and clocked one serve of 129 mph to beat Sampras, 6-4, 6-4. Becker lost to Carlos Moya of Spain, 6-3, 5-7, 6-4, then complained bitterly.

The quiz

Airing it out

The Ravens' Vinny Testaverde on Sunday became the 15th NFL quarterback to pass for at least 400 yards in a game in the 1990s. What three passers have done it three times? (Answer, 4D)

Quiz answer

Dan Marino, Warren Moon and Steve Young

Pub Date: 10/31/96

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