BC-AP Sports Preview Digest

Some of the sports stories The Associated Press is covering Monday. A full Sports Digest will be sent at about 3 p.m. All times EST:

– Randy Johnson, Pedro Martinez and John Smoltz are the leading newcomers on baseball’s Hall of Fame ballot when voting is announced Tuesday. Craig Biggio and Mike Piazza are the leading holdovers.

– CHARLOTTE, N.C. – The home of Carolina Panthers coach Ron Rivera sustains ”significant” damage from an early morning fire two days after his team’s playoff victory. No one is injured.

– INGLEWOOD, Calif. – The owner of the St. Louis Rams plans to build a stadium in Los Angeles County, boosting the chances that the NFL could return to the area, according to a newspaper report.

– Oregon’s lone loss this season was to Arizona. When the Ducks look back on that game they understand that the defeat was the turning point of their season.

– South Carolina remains No. 1 in the AP’s latest Top 25 women’s basketball rankings. Men’s poll released about 1 p.m.

– RENTON, Wash. – For the Seahawks, the biggest benefit of the No. 1 seed in the NFC was rest. With the earliest bye in the NFL this season, Seattle went 12 straight weeks without a break.

– OWINGS MILLS, Md. – There’s really no such thing as home-field advantage for teams facing the Ravens in the playoffs. Of course, no one has to tell that to the Patriots, Baltimore’s next opponent.

– INDIANAPOLIS – For most of the time Peyton Manning and Andrew Luck played in Indianapolis, the Colts’ defense has been overshadowed. Not anymore.

– IRVING, Texas – Tony Romo and Jason Witten have seen plenty of bad endings in Dallas. So it was quite a change when they combined on a critical fourth-down conversion after a surprising reversal by the refs.

– PERTH, Australia – Jet-lagged Serena Williams recovers from a 6-0 loss in the first set on a sweltering day to win her match at the Hopman Cup, a tuneup for the Australian Open.