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Sports briefs for March 19, 2013

By Wire Service Reports, Special to the BDN

Jets’ Ryan says Tebow will compete for spot

As long as Tim Tebow remains property of the New York Jets, he’ll get a chance to compete for the starting job, head coach Rex Ryan told reporters Tuesday at the owner’s meetings.

The question is: How long will he remain with the team?

Ryan said embattled incumbent Mark Sanchez will begin the offseason program as the starter, but his spot isn’t guaranteed.

“The first snap, he’ll be the guy running out there first, but there’s going to be competition at that spot, there’s no question about it,” Ryan said. “We need to get better at the quarterback position.”

Sanchez threw for 2,883 yards and 13 touchdowns last season, ranking him 26th in passing and tied for 25th (with Kansas City Chiefs’ quarterback Alex Smith) in touchdowns. He also tied Indianapolis Colts’ rookie Andrew Luck for third with 18 interceptions.

Tebow appeared in 12 games, mostly in the wildcat formation, and completed six of eight passes for 39 yards. When Sanchez was benched for a game last season, the Jets started backup Greg McElroy.

Citing a league source, reported that the Jets hope to deal, but will release otherwise.

Patriots, Wilson finalize three-year deal

The Patriots finalized a contract with strong safety Adrian Wilson.

The 12-year veteran signed a three-year, $5 million deal that includes a $1 million signing bonus.

Wilson, 33, was a five-time Pro Bowl safety and he started 14 of the 15 games in which he played for the Arizona Cardinals last season. He had one interception and three sacks in 2012.

Wilson likely will play in early-down situations for the Patriots, but not on passing downs.

The Patriots had lost safety Patrick Chung to the Philadelphia Eagles earlier.

Hasselbeck agrees to deal with Colts

The Indianapolis Colts agreed to a two-year deal with Matt Hasselbeck, who was released by the division rival Tennessee Titans on Monday.

The contract is worth $8 million over two years according to the Indianapolis Star.

Hasselbeck gives the Colts needed experience behind Andrew Luck, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2012 draft who led the team to the playoffs as a rookie. Hasselbeck, 36, is fourth among active quarterbacks and fifth in touchdowns and wins.

Hasselbeck was owed $5.5 million in 2013 and chose not to listen to the Titans on negotiations to reduce his salary.

The Titans responded by releasing Hasselbeck and signing former Bills starter Ryan Fitzpatrick to a two-year contract.

McLaren apologizes to Red Bull after software glitch

LONDON — McLaren apologized to Formula One rivals Red Bull on Tuesday after a standard engine control unit that they supply to all teams contributed to Mark Webber’s poor start at his home Australian Grand Prix.

“There was a software-related issue that meant that Mark Webber’s…car’s garage data system had to be re-started during the formation lap,” a McLaren Group statement said.

“That disrupted his preparations for the start of the race, for which Mark and the team has our apology. We are working together with them to prevent any recurrence.”

Webber had qualified on the front row, alongside team mate and triple world champion Sebastian Vettel, but the problem dropped him to seventh place after the opening lap of the season-opening race. He finished sixth.

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner had pointed the finger of blame at McLaren, whose McLaren Electronics Systems business supply the ECU, after a race that saw Vettel cross the line in third place.

Delany, Big Ten threaten non-scholarship model

Commissioner Jim Delany wrote that the Big Ten could revert to a Division III non-scholarship model if former UCLA player Ed O’Bannon and others win a lawsuit seeking a share of television revenues, according to

“It has been my longstanding belief that The Big Ten’s schools would forgo the revenues in those circumstances and instead take steps to downsize the scope, breadth and activity of their athletic programs,” Delany wrote in the declaration obtained by “Several alternatives to a ‘pay for play’ model exist, such as the Division III model … These alternatives would, in my view, be more consistent with The Big Ten’s philosophy that the educational and lifetime economic benefits associated with a university education are the appropriate quid pro quo for its student athletes.”

O’Bannon and other college football and basketball players have filed an antitrust lawsuit seeking a percentage of television revenues. If the NCAA loses the suit and is forced to pay some of the hundreds of millions in revenues, conferences like the Big Ten could be in a tough spot.

Dane Sorensen latest to admit to doping

COPENHAGEN — Olympic silver medallist Rolf Sorensen has admitted to doping during his successful years in the nineties, the Dane said on Monday.

“It is time that I too — long overdue — admit to having been part of the Epo-era that was a part of the sport in the 90s”, Sorensen, who won silver at the Olympic Games road race in Atlanta in 1996, said in a statement.

Sorensen admitted to having taken the hormone erythropoietin (EPO) and cortisone but told Danish newspaper Ekstra Bladet he was more “a party smoker on Saturdays as opposed to a needle addict”.

“I have never used blood transfusions, which I am totally against, and I simply will not be compared with Lance Armstrong”, he added in the newspaper.

Sorensen is the latest in a long line of cyclists to have confessed to doping after Lance Armstrong admitted in January to taking performing-enhancing drugs during his seven straight Tour de France victories from 1999-2005.

Earlier this year fellow Dane Michael Rasmussen admitted to more than a decade of doping.

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