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Sports briefs for April 8, 2013

By BDN Staff and Wire Reports, Special to the BDN

Back nine open at Rocky Knoll CC

ORRINGTON, Maine — The back nine at Rocky Knoll Country Club is now open for walkers only. Call the clubhouse at 989-0109 for more information.

Brunswick baseball coach receives Al Card Award

BRUNSWICK, Maine — Bowdoin College head baseball coach Mike Connolly has been named the 2013 recipient of the Al Card Award.

Given annually by the Collegiate Baseball Umpires Association of Maine, the award is named after a charter member of the organization, Al Card. The award is presented to a recipient who has “shown professonalism, enthusiasm and dedication on and off the baseball diamond, as well as being an inspiration to coaches, players, umpires and the game of baseball in Maine.”

Connolly accepted the award prior to Bowdoin’s doubleheader with Bates on Saturday.

NJ governor backs Rutgers president in coaching scandal

NEWARK, N.J. — New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie on Monday said the president of Rutgers University made a mistake but not a fireable one when he left it to aides to view videos of the men’s basketball coach physically and verbally abusing players.

A firestorm of criticism surrounding Robert Barchi, president of the largest public college in New Jersey, intensified on Monday as students at a town hall meeting on the Newark campus demanded his resignation in the scandal surrounding basketball coach Mike Rice.

A jeering crowd of hundreds of faculty and students hoisting signs reading “Give Barchi the boot” booed as he addressed criticism that under his leadership, the school put athletics before academics.

He also attempted to fend off questions about how the school tolerated coach Rice’s homophobic slurs against players in the wake of another Rutger’s scandal — the 2010 suicide of gay freshman Tyler Clementi after his roommate spied on his romantic liaison.

ESPN sports network last week broadcast videos of coach Mike Rice throwing basketballs at players’ heads and berating them with homophobic slurs during practice.

The videos first came to Rutgers in November and Barchi delegated subordinates to view them. The university subsequently suspended Rice for three games and fined him $50,000.

The recent ESPN broadcast touched off an uproar among students, faculty and fans that cost Rice and three other school officials their jobs.

Tebow plans to attend Jets workouts

Quarterback Tim Tebow is approaching the 2013 season as if he’ll be a member of the New York Jets.

Tebow plans to attend voluntary offseason workouts scheduled to start next Monday (April 15) according to multiple reports.

Tebow, acquired from the Denver Broncos last year, is one of five quarterbacks on the roster but is reportedly on the trading block.

The Jets haven’t directly addressed Tebow’s status, but at the Scouting Combine in February, coach Rex Ryan said Tebow would come to camp ready to compete if he’s still a part of the team.

The offseason has been dramatic for the Jets with friction between first-year general manager John Idzik and cornerback Darrelle Revis becoming the primary storyline, secondary to the team’s quantity — and unproven quality — at quarterback.

Penguins’ Neal out with concussion

Pittsburgh Penguins forward James Neal suffered a concussion on Friday and won’t be with the team for its upcoming road trip, Penguins head coach Dan Bylsma told reporters Monday.

Neal, 25, was injured when he took a hit from New York Rangers defenseman Michael Del Zotto. Del Zotto wasn’t penalized on the play.

Neal has no history of concussions.

He is the Penguins’ third-leading scorer this season with 18 goals and 14 assists. Last season, he scored a career-high 40 goals and was named to the NHL All-Star Game.

Canadiens’ Emelin out for season

Defenseman Alexei Emelin of the Montreal Canadiens is out for the rest of the season because of a torn knee ligament he sustained in a collision with Boston’s Milan Lucic on Saturday, the team announced Monday.

Immediately after the injury, it was believed Emelin had only sustained a Charley-horse. But it turned out to be a much more significant injury.

Emelin has three goals and nine assists in 38 games this season while averaging nearly 20 minutes of ice time per game.

The Canadiens already have injury problems with defensemen. Raphael Diaz is on injured reserve with a concussion, and Yannick Weber recently returned from a knee injury.

No deal yet for Wrigley renovation

CHICAGO — Talks continue between the Cubs and city of Chicago over a proposed $500 million Wrigley Field renovation project but no agreement is imminent.

Cubs owner Tom Ricketts said Monday that discussions continue to move forward.

“We are committed to getting something done with the city, the mayor’s been terrific and the alderman’s been very productive,” Ricketts told reporters prior to the Cubs’ Opening Day game with the Milwaukee Brewers. “Hopefully this is the beginning of the process to get something done. We’ve just got to keep working through.”

A local television station reported that an agreement would be announced on Monday, but Rickets said nothing was final and declined to put a timeframe on a resolution.

“I think it’s moving in the right direction,” he said. “I think we’ve worked through a lot of issues over the weekend and I’ll leave it at that.”

The Ricketts family has reportedly offered to fund renovation of the century-old landmark structure.

A first priority would be upgrades of clubhouses

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