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Michigan Hit Hard for Old Violations

From Associated Press

More misery for Michigan basketball.

The Wolverines were barred from the next postseason and put on 3 1/2 years’ probation by the NCAA on Thursday for a booster’s payments to players dating to the Fab Five era.

The team also will lose one of its 13 annual scholarships for four years, beginning in 2004-05.

The case stems from an investigation involving deceased Michigan booster Ed Martin, who said he paid players, including current Sacramento King star Chris Webber.

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“This is one of the most egregious violations of NCAA laws in the history of the organization,” NCAA Committee on Infractions Chairman Thomas Yeager said. “The reputation of the university, the student-athletes and the coach as a result of the basketball team’s accomplishments from 1992 through 1998 were a sham.”

Michigan held itself out of the NCAA tournament last season, and the NCAA infractions committee called the university’s self-imposed penalties “meaningful” but not enough. The Wolverines were barred from the NCAA tournament and NIT next season, but the Big Ten can decide whether to allow the school into the conference tourney.

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A player recruited to Iowa State by Larry Eustachy wants out, but his junior college coach says the university has ignored the request.

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Damion Staple, a 6-foot-9 forward at Southeastern Illinois College, signed with Iowa State last month, just before pictures of the former Cyclone coach partying with college students in Missouri were published.

Eustachy resigned Monday and now Staple, from Jamaica, wants to be released from his national letter of intent.

Southeastern Coach Todd Franklin said he called Iowa State athletic officials but has heard from no one other than assistant coach Wayne Morgan, who has no authority in such matters.

Golf

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Fred Couples and Nick Price helped get the PGA Tour’s Wachovia Championship at Charlotte, N.C., off to a smashing start, each posting a six-under-par 66, good for a one-stroke lead over Rich Beem.

Paul Goydos joined Jeff Brehaut at 68. Mike Weir, in his first tournament since winning the Masters, wound up at 72.

Rosie Jones and Sophie Gustafson each shot a six-under 66 to share the first-round lead in the LPGA Tour’s Asahi Ryokuken International at North Augusta, S.C.

Annika Sorenstam shot a six-under 66 to take a share of the lead after the first round of the Nichirei Cup at Tokyo.

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Tennis

Yevgeny Kafelnikov knocked off third-seeded Carlos Moya, 6-4, 7-6 (4), to reach the Italian Open quarterfinals at Rome.

Kim Clijsters defeated Fabiola Zuluaga, 7-5, 6-3, to advance to the quarterfinals of the German Open at Berlin.

Jennifer Capriati also advanced to the quarterfinals with a 6-2, 6-3 victory over Nathalie Dechy of France.

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Amy Frazier and Anna Kournikova advanced to the quarterfinals of the Cloister Cup with second-round victories at Sea Island, Ga.

Pro Football

Right guard Mo Collins has agreed to a multiyear deal to stay with the Oakland Raiders. Terms were not disclosed.

Tim Rattay, the 49ers’ backup quarterback for the last two seasons, signed a one-year contract with San Francisco.

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The Houston Texans released free safety Kevin Williams, who played in 13 games as a backup during the franchise’s inaugural season in 2002 and had 22 tackles.

College Football

East Tennessee State will get rid of its football program after the 2003 season for financial reasons.


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