UNDATED (AP) — A pair of Heisman Trophy finalists announced yesterday that they are skipping their senior season and entering the NFL draft. Michigan linebacker Jabrill Peppers is expected to be chosen in the first round after winning the Hornung Award as the nation’s most versatile college football player. Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson is also giving up his final year of eligibility after guiding the Tigers to a 32-3 as a starter and winning the national championship against Alabama on Monday.
NEW YORK (AP) — Knicks guard Derrick Rose has been fined by the team after he missed Monday’s loss to New Orleans for what he says were family reasons. Rose is expected to be in uniform for tonight’s game in Philadelphia. The 2011 NBA MVP is averaging 17.3 points this season but had been on the bench for the fourth quarters of the previous two games before Monday.
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Joe Gibbs Racing is losing its top driver. Two people with knowledge of the situation tell The Associated Press that Carl Edwards is walking away from the final year of his contract, telling Gibbs just before Christmas that he no longer wants to compete. The racing team is expected to announce Edwards’ decision and name reigning Xfinity Series champion Daniel Suarez as the replacement driver at separate news conferences tomorrow.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Rookies Auston Matthews of Toronto and Patrik Laine (LY’-nay) from Winnipeg are among the players selected for the NHL All-Star Game at Staples Center. The rosters also include Washington’s Alex Ovechkin, Pittsburgh’s Evgeni Malkin, John Tavares of the Islanders and Chicago teammates Patrick Kane, Jonathan Toews (TAYVS) and Duncan Keith. Pittsburgh’s Sidney Crosby, Edmonton’s Connor McDavid, Nashville’s P.K. Subban (SOO’-ban) and Montreal’s Carey Price already were chosen by fans to be captains of their respective teams.
ZURICH (AP) — FIFA (FEE’-fuh) will expand the World Cup from 32 to 48 teams for the 2026 tournament, which is likely to be held in North America. President Gianni Infantino’s favored plan has been unanimously approved by the FIFA Council and will consist of 16 three-team groups, with the top two in each group advancing to the second round. FIFA projects the 16 additional matches with bring in the equivalent of $1 billion extra income at current rates from broadcasting and sponsor deals, plus ticket sales.