BC-AP Sports Preview Digest

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

– LOS ANGELES – Jon Lester takes the mound for the Chicago Cubs against rookie Kenta Maeda of the Los Angeles Dodgers in Game 5 of a tied NLCS. Lester won Game 1, allowing one run in six innings. Game starts 8:08 p.m.

– CLEVELAND – This sports year in Cleveland has been like no other. First, the Cavaliers ended the city's championship drought after 52 years. Now, the Indians are in the World Series for the first time since 1997.

– LOUISVILLE, Ky. – The NCAA accuses Louisville of four violations stemming from its investigation into allegations that a former basketball staffer hired escorts and strippers for sex parties with recruits and players.

– GREEN BAY, Wis. – The Packers, trying to get their passing game going with Aaron Rodgers, play the Bears in the NFL's oldest rivalry. Green Bay (3-2) faces a Chicago team that is 1-5 and coming off two tough losses. Game starts 8:25 p.m.

– HOUSTON – As much as Oakland Raiders owner Mark Davis wishes otherwise, a decision on whether to allow his team to move to Las Vegas isn't likely to come soon. That's not to say it won't happen.

– MINNEAPOLIS – The Minnesota Lynx try to win back-to-back titles and match the WNBA record with their fourth championship, when they host the Los Angeles Sparks in the decisive Game 5 of the finals. Game starts 8 p.m.

– BOISE, Idaho – In the only Top 25 college football game Thursday night, No. 14 Boise State plays BYU. Game starts 10:15 p.m.

– TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – Texas A&M quarterback Trevor Knight was a redshirt freshman for Oklahoma when he picked apart Alabama's defense in the 2013 Sugar Bowl. He faces the top-ranked Tide on Saturday.

– The Cleveland Cavaliers know what it feels like to enter the season as Eastern Conference favorites. They begin this one with an entirely unfamiliar label – defending champions.

– PITTSBURGH – The Penguins and Sharks meet four months removed from Pittsburgh's victory over San Jose in the 2016 Stanley Cup Final. The Penguins are off to a 2-1-1 start while the Sharks are 3-1. Game starts 7 p.m.

– NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Why aren't more SEC basketball teams in the men's NCAA Tournament? The conference's coaches count the reasons: weak scheduling, backlash for football dominance, poor recruiting, coaching turnover.

– NYON, Switzerland – The Champions League final could be taken outside Europe, the new president of the European soccer's governing body tells the AP.

– SOELDEN, Austria – Lara Gut, the first overall World Cup champion from Switzerland in more than two decades, begins her title defense Saturday. U.S. star Mikaela Shiffrin could be her closest challenger.