BC-Sports Showcase Digest,ADVISORY

A look ahead to top enterprise and feature stories planned globally by AP Sports. New digests will go out each Thursday and Monday and will be repeated on other weekdays. Please note that story plans may change depending on news and other issues.

For access to AP Newsroom and other technical issues, contact AP Customer Support at apcustomersupport(at)ap.org or 877-836-9477. For reruns, call the Service Desk 800-838-4616 or your local AP bureau.

As with all our operations, we welcome and want your feedback. If you have thoughts or questions about the Sports Showcase Digest or the material listed, please reach out to Oskar Garcia, assistant sports editor for the U.S. east region, at 215-446-6632 or at ogarcia(at)ap.org.

All times are Eastern.

WEDNESDAY, March 14

BKC–NCAA-BONDED BY TRAGEDY

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Dan D’Antoni was a 21-year-old coaching assistant at Marshall back in 1970, and a babysitter, too. He was at the home of a friend and major program supporter for the Thundering Herd one night when a plane carrying members of the Wichita State football team crashed in Colorado, killing 31 people. Six weeks later, he was watching some of the booster’s six children with his dad when the news somehow was even worse: Another plane had crashed, killing 75 – including the booster and members of the Marshall football team. D’Antoni left Marshall a year later, the athletic department ripped apart by the crash. D’Antoni is back at Marshall and has the Herd in the NCAA Tournament, where the opening game Friday will come against Wichita State – two schools forever linked by tragedy all those years ago. By John Raby and Dave Skretta. SENT: 1,200 words, photos.

THURSDAY, March 15

HKN–CENTERS OF ATTENTION

Building down the middle has always been a Stanley Cup recipe, though now it’s important to have more than just four good centers in the NHL. The Philadelphia Flyers and Tampa Bay Lightning are already stacked with centers all over their lineups and when contenders added at the deadline, it was no shock what position they cared most about. You can never have too many centers all the time, but especially down the stretch and in the playoffs. By Hockey Writer Stephen Whyno. UPCOMING: 800 words, file photos by 5 a.m. Thursday.

MONDAY, March 19

OLY–JOHN LEICESTER-BOTTLING OUT

They’ve held the urine of sport’s greatest stars and been the cornerstone of anti-doping since they were first rolled out at the 1998 World Cup. But in the next three or four months, the global stock of Berlinger sample collection bottles will run out. Their Swiss manufacturer, its previously impeccable reputation battered by Russian cheats who found ways to open the bottles, is withdrawing from the niche industry it dominates, leaving a void into which anti-doping could collapse without a solution. By Sports Columnist John Leicester. UPCOMING: 800 words, photos and online video.

Again, if you have questions about the Sports Showcase Digest or the material listed, please reach out to Oskar Garcia, assistant sports editor for the U.S. east region, at 215-446-6632 or at ogarcia(at)ap.org.

Thanks,

AP Sports