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Posted at 01:32 PM ET, 07/22/2014

Tony Dungy clarifies comments on Michael Sam


(Dilip Vishwanat / Getty Images)

NBC Sports commentator and former NFL coach Tony Dungy issued a statement to clarify his comments that he would not have drafted Michael Sam, the first openly gay player taken in the NFL draft.

His full statement first appeared on Pro Football Talk (via his NBC colleague Mike Florio):

On Monday afternoon while on vacation with my family, I was quite surprised to read excerpts from an interview I gave several weeks ago related to this year’s NFL Draft, and I feel compelled to clarify those remarks.

Dungy told the Tampa Tribune’s Ira Kaufman that the presence of Sam, a seventh-round draft pick by the St. Louis Rams, would be a distraction:

“I wouldn’t have taken him, not because I don’t believe Michael Sam should have a chance to play, but I wouldn’t want to deal with all of it. It’s not going to be totally smooth … things will happen.”

By  |  01:32 PM ET, 07/22/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:27 PM ET, 07/22/2014

Former prep basketball standout Emmanuel Mudiay signs one-year pro deal in China


(For SMU Coach Larry Brown, Emmanuel Mudiay is the one who got away. (Associated Press)

Emmanuel Mudiay, a prep standout who announced last week that he would play professional basketball overseas instead of at Southern Methodist, has signed a one-year deal to play for Guangdong of the China Basketball Association.

Yahoo’s Adrian Wojnarowski has a source telling him that the deal is worth $1.2 million.

Mudiay, considered by most to be the top high school point guard in the recruiting class of 2014, is expected to be a high lottery pick in the 2015 NBA draft.

Mudiay had been accepted by SMU but had yet to be cleared academically by the NCAA’s Eligibility Center. As CBS Sports’ Gary Parrish reported last week, his chances of gaining eligibility “were slim” because he spent the past two years at Prime Prep Academy, a Texas charter school co-founded by NFL Hall of Famer Deion Sanders that could soon be closed because it failed to comply with the state’s education code.

According to Parrish, Prime Prep has been “under an extended evaluation period to determine if it meets the academic requirements for NCAA cleared status.” And while players from Prime Prep have been cleared by the NCAA in the past, those players had done enough academic work at other schools to qualify for a waiver. Because Mudiay attended Prime Prep for two years, he almost certainly did not have enough academic work from another school to qualify for a waiver.

A source told Parrish that the NCAA has never once allowed Prime Prep coursework to count toward a prospective student-athlete’s transcript.

According to Sports Illustrated’s Seth Davis, SMU Coach Larry Brown thought Mudiay would have qualified.

Only two high-profile prep basketball players are known to have foregone college basketball to play professionally overseas. Brandon Jennings, the No. 1 recruit in the class of 2008, spurned Arizona to play professionally in Italy for one season after graduating from high school. He was selected 10th overall by the Milwaukee Bucks in the 2009 NBA draft and currently plays for the Detroit Pistons. Jeremy Tyler, meanwhile, skipped his senior year of high school in San Diego to play professionally in Israel, playing in only 10 games for Maccabi Haifa for the 2009-10 season. He spent the 2010-11 season playing professionally in Japan before getting drafted with the 39th overall pick by the Charlotte Bobcats in the 2011 NBA draft.  Last season, he played 17 games for the New York Knicks.

By  |  01:27 PM ET, 07/22/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:46 PM ET, 07/22/2014

Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympics preparations aren’t going well and South Korean officials are investigating why


Pyeongchang Mayor Sok-ra waves the Olympic flag during the closing ceremony for the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics in February. (Marko Djurica/Reuters)

Hosting the Olympics or World Cup? Better be prepared for an investigation.

Along with Russia, the host of the 2014 Winter Olympics and 2018 World Cup, Brazil, host of the 2014 World Cup and 2016 Summer Olympics, and Qatar, the host of the 2022 World Cup, Pyeongchang, South Korea is now joining the list. The host of the 2018 Winter Olympics has been under investigation over its preparations for the games, South Korean said Tuesday. The Associated Press reports:

The confirmation by the Seoul-based Board of Audit and Inspection came one day after the resignation of organizing committee chief Kim Jin-sun.

However, whether the audit, which began in late May and ended on July 11, centers on either of those two issues is unclear. Nor is it clear whether Jun-sun’s resignation had anything to do with the investigation, the full results of which should be released in three months. The Associated Press reports:

[Officials in the eastern Gangwon province, which includes Pyeongchang], who spoke on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to give their names under department rules, said the construction delay should have nothing to do with Kim’s resignation because building issues are overseen by provincial officials, not by the organizing committee.

At least one thing seems certain: Unlike Russia, Brazil and Qatar, South Korea has yet to come under fire for human rights reasons. Hopefully it won’t.

By Marissa Payne  |  12:46 PM ET, 07/22/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:40 PM ET, 07/22/2014

Charles Barkley’s golf game is still turrible and not even cussing will help


(Getty Images)

Charles Barkley has been playing golf again and that means only one thing — good, solid summer comedy.

First, Sir Charles, whose hitch continues to be impeded by an inexplicable giddy-up, tried a one-armed swing in the American Century Championship.

He had a rather turrible outing, finishing last among 86 celebs and managing to bogey only five times in 54 holes. He did, though, choose to address his ball — profanely and rather hilariously. (TMZ has the video and the language is unsuitable for the workplace and small children.)

Barkley did get a nice offer from Paul Azinger, though. Maybe he should take him up on it.

By  |  12:40 PM ET, 07/22/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:58 AM ET, 07/22/2014

The WWE’s Damien Sandow trolls Miami fans on ‘Raw’ by impersonating LeBron James


(Leo Correa/AP))

Monday night’s WWE “Raw” was by all accounts terrible. Even the ending, which was should’ve been awesome with Paul Heyman’s unveiling of “Plan C,” a.k.a. Brock Lesnar, didn’t have the payoff some fans were hoping for. That’s probably because the current story lines have become all too predictable. (And of course, this SummerSlam ad that leaked last week didn’t help with keeping fans on their toes either.)

With that in mind, obviously Damien Sandow, whose been relegated from the once great “Intellectual Savior” of the WWE to terrible impersonator/village idiot, trolled the Miami audience by coming out dressed up as LeBron James.

Yeah. It managed to be way worse than the time he came out dressed as Lance Stephenson.

In other Raw news, Stephanie McMahon was arrested for slapping what seemed to be a Ric-Flair-level drunk Brie Bella in the face. While it’s mind-blowing that Bella is even still a story line, at least that terrible bit produced the best GIF ever. Please to view the shocked expression on the man’s face behind Bella after she insults McMahon with a word that has no place on a PG television program.


(Via WrasslorMonkey)

By Marissa Payne  |  11:58 AM ET, 07/22/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

 

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