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THE INSIDE TRACK | NEWSWIRE

NASCAR Fines Stewart but Doesn't Suspend Him

July 12, 2001|From Staff and Wire Reports

Tony Stewart avoided a costly suspension Wednesday when NASCAR fined him $10,000 and extended his probation through the end of the season for separate blowups with a Winston Cup official and a reporter after Saturday's Pepsi 400.

Stewart, who was already on probation through August for spinning out Jeff Gordon on pit road earlier this season, could have received a stiffer punishment ranging from suspension from races to a loss of championship points.

Instead, NASCAR said Stewart would be subjected to those punishments should he violate his probation again.

Stewart, who attended his grandfather's funeral in Lafayette, Ind., on Tuesday, was not available for comment.

College Basketball

Pete Gillen, who guided Virginia to its highest ranking in years and to the NCAA tournament last year, is discussing a long-term contract with the school.

Gillen, 54, and Virginia have been discussing a new contract for about six weeks, interim Athletic Director Craig Littlepage said. The deal would replace the last four years on Gillen's original contract and would pay the coach a reported $9 million.

A dispute that began when Cincinnati overscheduled its men's team and canceled a game last season has escalated: Temple billed Cincinnati $85,000.

Cincinnati Athletic Director Bob Goin said his school paid Temple the money but called off what would have been a makeup game next season.

Goin now says the Bearcats will never again play the Owls, a regular nonconference opponent during the 1990s, while he is athletic director.

Duke center Carlos Boozer will join All-America teammate Jason Williams and leave school for the pros after next season, according to Blue Devil assistant coach Chris Collins. Boozer averaged 13.3 points and 6.5 rebounds as a sophomore last season when the Blue Devils won the national championship . . . Kurtis Townsend, a former assistant at Michigan, California and Eastern Kentucky, has joined the USC men's program as an assistant coach. . . . Courtney LaVere, a 6-foot-3 center/forward who will be a senior at Buena High in the fall, has made a commitment to attend Notre Dame in 2002. She averaged 13.8 points and 7.6 rebounds as a junior.

Jurisprudence

Federal prosecutors will decide within two months whether to pursue a criminal indictment against former Minnesota basketball coach Clem Haskins.

The school is suing to have Haskins return much of the $1.5 million he received in a buyout after being fired in the wake of the academic fraud scandal uncovered in the men's basketball program in 1999.

Josh Brown, starting kicker for the Nebraska football team the last two seasons, pleaded no contest in Lincoln, Neb., to misdemeanor assault charges and was fined $350 for a fight last month with another student. . . . A tentative settlement was reached in a lawsuit that accused Louisiana State of violating federal law by shortchanging women's sports programs. LSU lawyer Michael Pharis and plaintiffs' lawyer Nancy Rafuse said they could not give details until the agreement is final.

Miscellany

Wimbledon champion Goran Ivanisevic has offered to help British tennis find a home-grown winner.

Ivanisevic, who defeated England's Tim Henman in the Wimbledon semifinals, has offered to help coach youngsters as part of a program by the Lawn Tennis Assn. to encourage British children to play tennis.

The role suggested by Ivanisevic is similar to one proposed by two-time women's champion Venus Williams and her sister Serena, but with no money involved.

Second-seeded Juan Carlos Ferrero of Spain defeated Julien Boutter of France, 7-6 (2), 6-2, in the third round of the Gstaad Open in Switzerland. . . . Andreas Vinciguerra of Sweden failed to capitalize on three set points in the opening set and lost to Andrea Gaudenzi of Italy, 7-5, 6-1, in a second-round match in the Swedish Open at Bastad.

Officials of the World Track and Field Championships are warning international federations about a bacteria that killed a professional golfer in Edmonton, Canada. The warning letter does not necessarily recommend athletes going to Edmonton for the Aug. 3-12 championships get a vaccination. Dr. David Reid, chief of medical services for the championships, said the decision to send the letter was made after it was revealed that Zimbabwean golfer Lewis Chitengwa died of the Edmonton strain of meningococcal bacteria when he was in the city for a golf tournament June 30. . . . Donovan Bailey, the former world record-holder and 1996 Olympic champion at 100 meters, will run the final race of his career in the World Championships despite painful bone spurs in both heels.

Bernard Hopkins angered fans of Felix Trinidad by again throwing the Puerto Rican flag to the floor in San Juan.

The promotional event for their undisputed middleweight championship fight, Sept. 15 in New York, ended abruptly in a near-riot as fans rushed the stage and threw bottles and chairs.

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