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National

  • Membership issues creep up again as Masters starts

    AUGUSTA, Ga. (AP) — Jabbed, prodded and poked repeatedly about a topic that never really goes away, Billy Payne wouldn’t budge.
    Faced with questions at his annual news conference about when a woman would become a member at the home of the Masters, the Augusta National chairman gave different variations of the same answer: That’s our business, not yours.
    The topic was on the front burner again Wednesday, the eve of the year’s first major, because one of the club’s longtime sponsors, IBM, has a new CEO — Virginia Rometty. The last four CEOs at IBM, all male, have been invited to be members.

  • Baylor wins title, goes 40-0

    DENVER (AP) — Brittney Griner’s place in women’s basketball history is secure.
    Blocking layups, snagging rebounds, hitting shots over two and three helpless defenders, she towered over the competition all season long to earn player of the year and outstanding player of the NCAA tournament honors.
    She was simply dominant in adding national champion to her resume on Tuesday night.
    Griner had 26 points, 13 rebounds and five blocks to lead Baylor to an 80-61 victory over Notre Dame in the NCAA women’s basketball championship, capping an unparalleled 40-0 season for the Lady Bears.

  • Kentucky beats Kansas for NCAA title

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Before his confetti-flecked suit gets back from the cleaners, John Calipari will be on the road.

    Such is life for a coach who recruits all that NBA-ready talent — especially when those players get in the habit of bringing championships back to their ol' Kentucky home.

    Cal's latest group of one-and-doners doesn't have much left to prove at this level. Despite a rough shooting night by the best of Kentucky's talented freshmen, Anthony Davis, the Wildcats defeated Kansas 67-59 on Monday night to win their eighth national title, and first since 1998.

  • Johnson's group to purchase Dodgers

    NEW YORK (AP) — One Los Angeles institution is buying another.
    A group that includes former Lakers star Magic Johnson and longtime baseball executive Stan Kasten agreed Tuesday night to buy the Dodgers from Frank McCourt for a record $2 billion.
    The price would shatter the mark for a sports franchise. Stephen Ross paid $1.1 billion for the NFL’s Miami Dolphins in 2009, and in England, Malcolm Glazer and his family took over the Manchester United soccer club in 2005 in a deal then valued at $1.47 billion.
    Mark Walter, chief executive officer of the financial services firm Guggenheim Partners, would become the controlling owner.

  • Tebow introduced in Big Apple

    FLORHAM PARK, N.J. (AP) — Tim Tebow got his first New York close-up Monday.

    And he handled it all with the same cool approach — smiling, polite, composed — that has won over so many football fans around the country.

    Speaking at news conference in the Jets' field house, because the media crush so great the session couldn't be held in the team's normal press room, the headline-grabbing New York backup QB went out of his way to play down any conflict between himself and starter Mark Sanchez.

  • Commentary: Tebow walking into a chaotic situation

    NEW YORK — Chaotic, arrogant, sometimes even crass.
    And if you think the New York Jets are bad, you should see their fans.
    Welcome to The Big Apple, Tim Tebow. If you can make it there ... well, let’s just say the attention you received in Denver — the obsessing over your throwing technique, what kind of teammate you were, your religious beliefs, your musical preferences, where you went for dinner and, yes, even your Tebowing — will seem like a quick once-over compared to the microscope you’ll be under in Manhattan.
    “I think it’s a great market; it’s a great city,” Tebow said late Wednesday night.
    Better watch what you wish for.

  • NFL suspends Payton

    The National Football League announced on its website the New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton will be suspended for one season without pay for his role in the Saints’ bounty program.
    The league levied punishments for Payton, team general manager Mickey Loomis and former defensive coordinator Gregg Williams Wednesday morning. The NFL Players Union requested the team not take any action on the involved Saints defensive players until the union completed its own investigation.
    According to NFL.com, Williams has been suspended indefinitely and Loomis has been suspended for the first eight games of the 2012 season.

  • Manning, Broncos reach a big deal

    DENVER (AP) — The big deal is done. Peyton Manning is a Denver Bronco.
    A person familiar with negotiations says that Manning and the Broncos completed his five-year contract worth about $96 million on Tuesday morning.
    The person spoke on condition of anonymity because Manning is to be introduced at a news conference at Broncos headquarters later.
    The agreement ends a wild chase for perhaps the most valued free agent in the history of the NFL, a quarterback who has won an unprecedented four league MVP awards and took the Indianapolis Colts to a Super Bowl victory in 2007.

  • VIDEO: Broncos Fans Welcome Manning, Wonder About Tebow

    Broncos fans were excited by the news that free agent quarterback Peyton Manning was reportedly negotiating a contract with the team. The AP caught up with fans who were wondering what adding Manning will do to current quarterback Tim Tebow.

  • Lobos win, Aggies fall in March Madness

    It was a mixed day for the state of New Mexico during the second round of the NCAA Tournament in Portland, Ore., Thursday.
    Fifth-seeded New Mexico held off Long Beach State 75-68 and the Lobos will face Louisville in a third-round matchup Saturday in the West Regional. Thirteen-seeded New Mexico State, meanwhile, was unable to handle Indiana inside and fell 79-66 to Indiana in the South Regional.
    In the New Mexico game, Kendall Williams scored 14 of his 16 points in the second half and bottled up Long Beach State star Casper Ware defensively.
    When New Mexico needed a big shot, Williams delivered. His 3-pointer with 4:38 left pushed the Lobos ahead for good after Long Beach State (25-9) took a 61-59 lead on a steal and windmill dunk from James Ennis.