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Hurricane’s Impact Alters Football Games

From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Louisiana State postponed its scheduled football game Saturday night against North Texas because of Hurricane Katrina.

“The events of yesterday and this morning have made it clear that this is not the time to play a football game,” LSU Athletic Director Skip Bertman said Tuesday. “This is a dire situation that rivals any in the history of our state, and our priorities are on participating in recovery efforts.”

The school hopes to announce the date for the postponed game in the next two to three days. LSU is ranked fifth in the nation.

Also, the Tulane-Southern Mississippi game scheduled for Sunday in Hattiesburg, Miss., has been moved to the Saturday after Thanksgiving.

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In other changes, Nicholls State’s game at Utah State on Saturday has been canceled. Nicholls State is in Thibodaux, La.

Also, Southern University’s game Saturday at McNeese State in Lake Charles, La., has been canceled, and Jacksonville’s game Thursday night at Southeastern Louisiana in Hammond, La., has been postponed indefinitely.

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Central Michigan University and the University of North Dakota have formally appealed the NCAA’s decision to restrict the use of their nicknames.

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Central Michigan, nicknamed the Chippewas, and North Dakota, nicknamed the Fighting Sioux, are among 17 schools whose nicknames are considered “hostile or abusive,” under a new NCAA policy.

Those schools are barred from playing host to NCAA tournaments and from using the names or imagery in the postseason.

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Hockey

Restricted free-agent defenseman Hal Gill re-signed with the Boston Bruins, agreeing to a one-year contract.

The Mighty Ducks signed defenseman Kent Huskins and center Geoff Peters to one-year contracts. Huskins, 26, played with Manitoba of the American Hockey League last season. Peters, 27, has played the last two seasons with Rochester of the AHL.... Defenseman Brian Muir signed a contract with the Washington Capitals, who acquired him from the Kings.

Mike “Doc” Emrick, a 25-year veteran hockey broadcaster, was hired as the lead play-by-play announcer for the Outdoor Life Network, which will televise NHL games this season.

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Jurisprudence

Todd Shell, coach of the Arizona Rattlers in the Arena Football League, was arrested and admitted he had been snorting cocaine, police said.

Shell, 43, was spotted about 1 a.m. by an officer doing a routine check behind a strip of businesses in Mesa, Ariz.

Connecticut point guard A.J. Price pleaded not guilty to larceny charges stemming from the theft of laptop computers from an athletic dormitory.

New Mexico basketball player J.R. Giddens was charged with misdemeanor battery and disorderly conduct, stemming from a fight outside a bar in May in Lawrence, Kan., during which he was stabbed in the leg.

Giddens was playing for Kansas at the time of the fight.

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Golf

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The richest prize in an official golf tournament was not enough to make Tiger Woods, Vijay Singh or Phil Mickelson want to play in the World Match Play Championship at Wentworth, England, scheduled for Sept. 15-18.

Along with losing the top three players in the world rankings, the 16-man field -- which offers $1.78 million to the winner -- will be without defending champion Ernie Els, who is recovering from knee surgery.

Sergio Garcia, Masters runner-up Chris DiMarco, Fred Couples and Davis Love III also decided not to play. No Americans are in the field.

Qualifying for the $80,000 California State Open Golf Championship will be held at four sites: Rio Hondo Golf Course in Downey on Sept. 26, Hunter Ranch Golf Club in Paso Robles on Sept. 29, the PGA of Southern California Golf Club in Beaumont on Oct. 5 and Temecula Creek Inn on Oct. 13. Jason Gore is the defending champion of the State Open, which will be Oct. 19-21 at Redhawk Golf Club in Temecula.

Details: Brad Storman 951-544-5881, or SCPGA.com.

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Miscellany

Santa Ana Mater Dei High forward Taylor King will make an unofficial visit to USC and meet with new Coach Tim Floyd today.

King, a top 10 nationally ranked small forward who averaged 25 points and 11 rebounds for the Monarchs as a sophomore last season, made a nonbinding oral commitment to UCLA Coach Ben Howland as an eighth-grader but opened up his recruitment last spring.

England striker Michael Owen joined Newcastle United from Real Madrid on a four-year contract, bringing him back to the English Premier League.

Newcastle did not reveal the transfer fee but said it surpassed the club-record $26.8 million it paid for Alan Shearer in 1996.

Busch Series driver Reed Sorenson’s crew chief was suspended for six races for soaking tires to improve the grip on the track at Bristol Motor Speedway.

Brian Pattie was fined $35,000, suspended until Oct. 26 and put on probation until the end of the year. Crew member Brandon Stafford also was suspended for six races and Sorenson was docked 50 points.

The World Boxing Hall of Fame has elected eight new members. The group includes five fighters -- former lightweight champion Ray “Boom Boom” Mancini, former bantamweight titleholders Jeff Chandler and Alfonso Zamora, middleweight Joey Archer and lightweight Glen Flanagan -- along with three -- Nevada boxing commission executive Marc Ratner, trainer Teddy Atlas and referee/judge Gwen Adair -- in the expanded category.

Induction will take place Oct. 22 at a banquet at the Crowne Plaza Commerce Casino Hotel in Commerce.


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