Some of the sports stories The Associated Press is covering Wednesday. A full Sports Digest will be sent by about 3 p.m. All times EST:
– ATLANTA – Lane Kiffin is closing in on his finale as Alabama’s offensive coordinator, a partnership with Nick Saban that has netted three straight playoff appearances.
– ATLANTA – Overlooked in the College Football Playoff, the Washington Huskies know just about everyone figures they’ll be one-and-done against mighty Alabama.
– SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – The last time Ohio State played Clemson the Tigers ripped up the Buckeyes’ defense. That 2014 Orange Bowl game prompted Urban Meyer to revamp Ohio State’s defense.
– Four bowl games Wednesday: Pinstripe (Northwestern-Pittsburgh, 2 p.m.); Russell Athletic (Miami-West Virginia, 5:30 p.m.); Foster Farms (Indiana-Utah, 8:30 p.m.); Texas (Kansas State-Texas A&M, 9 p.m.).
– AP’s package of year-end stories: Games of the Year. Sometimes games actually do live up to the hype. Putting on quite the show this year were the Cubs and Indians, Warriors and Cavs, Tar Heels and Wildcats.
– Among the worst calls in the NFL in 2016 was the Texans breaking the bank for Brock Osweiler. Among the best: the Cowboys keeping Tony Romo.
– Should he stay or should he go? That’s the clash some teams are considering as the NFL season winds down. Here are the pros and cons for keeping eight coaches in their jobs.
– ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. – Anthony Lynn will close the season as the Buffalo Bills’ interim coach after Rex Ryan was fired. One of his first moves is expected to be a switch at quarterback.
– OAKLAND, Calif. – In a game between division leaders, the Golden State Warriors return from a road trip to face a Toronto Raptors team that has won four straight. Game starts 10:30 p.m.
– Two notable college basketball games: No. 2 UCLA at No. 21 Oregon (9 p.m.) and No. 12 Virginia at No. 6 Louisville (7 p.m.).
– Elite young defensemen are adapting to the NHL quicker than players from previous generations. This challenges the notion that defensemen take longer to develop than forwards.
– Bradley Wiggins retires from cycling after a career in which he became Britain’s first Tour de France champion and won eight Olympic medals.
– SEMMERING, Austria – Mikaela Shiffrin wins her second World Cup giant slalom in two days, extending the American’s lead in the overall standings.
– Bob Bradley, the first American coach in the English Premier League, was fired after just 85 days at Swansea. The seeds of turmoil, however, had been planted at the Welsh club before he arrived.