Joppatowne's appeal denied by MPSSAA
The Joppatowne football team's appeal of game forfeitures because of an ineligible player has been denied by the Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association. The outcome of the hearing, held Tuesday, was revealed yesterday during a news conference at the Harford County Board of Education in Bel Air. The appeals committee upheld the sanction, forfeiting 10 games from the 2007 season, when Joppatowne went 11-2, won the 1A South regional championship and advanced to the Class 1A state semifinals. The team also has to forfeit its first three victories this season. The forfeits were the result of falsified residency documentation that was submitted by a player's parent. Joppatowne has 30 days to decide whether it will file a second appeal directly to the state superintendent of schools. "The school played an ineligible player and benefited from that player's services," said Ned Sparks, the MPSSAA executive director. "Yeah, they were hoodwinked. Yeah, they were dealt a dirty blow. But they still played with an ineligible person and had that advantage." Joppatowne, which has continued to win and is 5-3, is still in contention for a playoff berth. "There is disappointment over this among some of our coaches," said Joppatowne principal Macon Tucker, who is also the father of Joppatowne quarterback Benjamin Tucker. "But the players are pretty resilient."
Ken Macha was hired as manager of the Milwaukee Brewers, taking over from Dale Sveum after the team's first postseason appearance since 1982. Macha, 58, who managed the Oakland Athletics to a pair of American League West titles and was fired after the 2006 season, agreed to a two-year contract. He replaces Sveum, who became interim manager when Ned Yost was fired with 12 games left in the regular season. The Brewers lost in four games to the Philadelphia Phillies, the eventual World Series champions, in the first round of the playoffs.
Nationals:: Closer Chad Cordero, reliever Ryan Wagner and infielder Pete Orr opted to become free agents when Washington outrighted them to Triple-A Syracuse. The Nationals also rejected their $5 million club option for 2009 on outfielder Wily Mo Pena, but he exercised his $2 million option.
Free agency:: Outfielder Manny Ramirez, first baseman Mark Teixeira (Mount St. Joseph) and pitcher Ben Sheets were among 65 players who filed for free agency on the first possible day. Yesterday began a 15-day window in which about 180 players can become free agents.
Et cetera:: Outfielder Ken Griffey Jr.'s $16.5 million option was declined by the White Sox, making him eligible for free agency. ... The Tigers declined the option on shortstop Edgar Renteria's contract, choosing to give him $3 million instead of $11 million to return. ... Outfielder Fernando Tatis agreed to a one-year, $1.7 million deal with the Mets. ... The Marlins traded first baseman Mike Jacobs to the Royals for right-handed reliever Leo Nunez.
The Los Angeles Lakers signed Andrew Bynum to a contract extension, removing the possibility the center, 21, would become an unrestricted free agent next summer. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Bynum will make $2.8 million this season.
2010 All-Star Game:: The NBA announced that the exhibition will be held at the new Dallas Cowboys stadium, and plenty of good seats are available - more than 100,000. The Mavericks and Cowboys are collaborating on hosting next season's game. It will be among the first major events at the $1.1 billion facility in nearby Arlington.
Thomas:: A newly released police report indicates the person who called 911 around midnight Oct. 23 about an overdose at Isiah Thomas' home believed the victim had stopped breathing. The patient's name is redacted from the Town of Harrison, N.Y., report, which was released to the Associated Press. Authorities have not publicly identified the former Knicks coach as the accidental overdose victim, but a person familiar with the case confirmed to the AP that it was Thomas.
Et cetera:: LeBron James had 22 points, nine rebounds and nine assists as the Cavaliers won their home opener, 96-79, over the Bobcats. ... Yao Ming scored 30 points and Ron Artest had 29 to carry the visiting Rockets to a 112-102 win over the Mavericks. ... The Pistons and forward Jason Maxiell agreed on a four-year, $20 million contract extension, a basketball official told the AP. ... The Nets exercised a fourth-year contract option on center Josh Boone (South Carroll) and third-year options on forwards Sean Williams and Yi Jianlian. The team declined to pick up the fourth-year option on guard Maurice Ager.
Judge: Vick must appear in person for plea in Va.
Former NFL quarterback Michael Vick won't be allowed to plead guilty to dogfighting charges Nov. 25 by videoconference, a judge ruled in Sussex, Va. Vick's lawyers had requested that he be allowed to enter the plea from federal prison in Leavenworth, Kan., where he is serving a two-year term since admitting he bankrolled a dogfighting operation and helped execute dogs. But citing high public interest in the case, Surry County Circuit Judge Samuel Campbell said it would be better for Vick to appear in person.
More NFL: : As safety Bob Sanders (ankle, knee) and running back Joseph Addai (hamstring) practiced for a second straight day, coach Tony Dungy said cornerback Marlin Jackson will miss the rest of the season with a knee injury he suffered during Wednesday's practice.
College football:: Playing with a soft cast protecting his broken left forearm, Tony Pike threw for 281 yards and two touchdowns for host Cincinnati (6-2, 2-1 Big East) in a 24-10 win over No. 24 South Florida. The Bulls, the only ranked team in the conference, fell to 6-3, 1-3.
Golf:: Nick Price and David Eger shot opening-round 6-under-par 66s in Sonoma, Calif., to lead the Champions Charles Schwab Cup Championship. Jay Haas, who leads Fred Funk, a former golf coach at Maryland, by 12 points in the Schwab Cup competition, shot a 69. Funk had a 74. ... Kent Jones birdied the 18th hole in Palm Coast, Fla., for a 7-under 65, giving him a share of the lead with Michael Letzig in the PGA Ginn sur Mer Classic.
NHL:: The Capitals aren't sure when Alex Ovechkin will be back in the lineup. General manager George McPhee spoke to the star player but did not have an updated timetable on a possible return. Ovechkin left the team Monday to travel to Russia and be with his ailing grandfather.
College basketball:: North Carolina star forward Tyler Hansbrough is out of practice indefinitely with a stress reaction condition in his right shin.
Soccer:: David Beckham will join AC Milan in January on a three-month loan from the Los Angeles Galaxy to maintain his fitness and prolong his career with the English national team.