Tuesday Sports in Brief
TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Bruce Arians is the latest coach entrusted to transform the struggling Tampa Bay Buccaneers into winners.
The 66-year-old came out of a one-year retirement Tuesday to fill the team’s fifth coaching vacancy in a decade.
Arians replaces Dirk Koetter, who was dismissed Dec. 30 after leading the Bucs to 19 wins and no playoffs berths over the past three seasons.
Arians coached the Arizona Cardinals for five years, stepping down after the 2017 season with a 50-32-1 record that included one division title, two playoff berths, three seasons with double-digit wins and one NFC championship game appearance.
PHOENIX (AP) — The Arizona Cardinals have hired former Texas Tech coach Kliff Kingsbury, a move aimed at providing guidance for young quarterback Josh Rosen and resuscitating the worst offense in the NFL.
The Cardinals announced the hiring Tuesday after a long interview earlier in the day. He was to be introduced at a news conference at the team’s training facility in Tempe on Wednesday.
Kingsbury was fired after going 35-40 in six seasons at Texas Tech, but his teams were known for their high-scoring performances. His prize pupil in those days was current Kansas City Chiefs All-Pro quarterback Patrick Mahomes. Tuesday’s hiring came barely a month after Kingsbury was hired as offensive coordinator at USC.
GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) — Matt LaFleur has been named head coach of the Green Bay Packers, the team announced Tuesday night, confirming multiple reports from a day earlier.
The 39-year-old LaFleur spent this season as offensive coordinator of the Tennessee Titans, his first calling plays in the NFL. Before that, he was offensive coordinator for the Los Angeles Rams in 2017, helping direct a high-powered offense with coach Sean McVay calling plays.
LaFleur takes over for Mike McCarthy, who was fired during the season following a stunning home loss to Arizona on Dec. 2.
NEW YORK (AP) — Assistant coaches Sam Mills III of the Carolina Panthers and Adam Zimmer of the Minnesota Vikings will be the head coaches of the East-West Shrine Game, which features some of college football’s best prospects.
The 94th annual East-West Shrine Game will be played Saturday, Jan. 19, at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Florida, and be televised on NFL Network.
Mills will coach the East team. Zimmer will coach the West team.
VIRGINIA WATER, England (AP) — Padraig Harrington has been chosen as captain of the Europe team for the 2020 Ryder Cup at Whistling Straits.
The appointment of Harrington was announced by the European Tour at its headquarters at Wentworth on Tuesday.
The 47-year-old Irishman has served as vice-captain for the last three Ryder Cups, most recently under Thomas Bjorn last year when Europe regained the trophy outside Paris.
Former top-10 player Mardy Fish will be the new captain of the U.S. Davis Cup team, taking over the job as the event shifts to a drastically different setup.
A person familiar with the U.S. Tennis Association’s choice told The Associated Press on Tuesday that Fish will replace former captain Jim Courier, who stepped down in September after eight years leading the Americans. The person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the USTA scheduled a formal announcement about Fish on Wednesday.
The 37-year-old Fish won six titles in singles and eight in doubles as a player, earned a silver medal for the United States at the 2004 Athens Olympics in singles and competed in the Davis Cup from 2002-12.
—By Tennis Writer Howard Fendrich.
WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. (AP) — Chris Evert has been chosen to chair the USTA Foundation’s board of directors, serving as a spokeswoman and ambassador for the U.S. Tennis Association’s charitable arm.
The 18-time Grand Slam champion and member of the International Tennis Hall of Fame takes over as chair from James Blake.
DENVER (AP) — An arbitration panel has ruled in favor of taekwondo coach Jean Lopez, meaning his name has been removed from the U.S. Center for SafeSport’s sanctioned list and he is free to resume coaching without restriction.
Lopez was declared permanently ineligible in April for sexual misconduct involving three women. The ban was lifted and replaced by a temporary sanction in August pending the arbitration hearing, which was held Dec. 27.
Lopez’s attorney, Howard Jacobs, said Tuesday that arbitrators ruled unanimously in favor of Lopez.
BUDAPEST, Hungary (AP) — Antal Bolvari, a two-time Olympic water polo champion who scored a goal in Hungary’s famous 4-0 win over the Soviet Union in the “Blood in the Water” match at the 1956 Melbourne Games, has died. He was 86.
Bolvari, who won gold at both the 1952 and 1956 Olympics, died Tuesday in the hospital after a long, undisclosed illness, his family said.
Egypt will replace Cameroon as the host of this year’s African Cup of Nations soccer tournament, giving Mohamed Salah a chance to shine on his home stage.
Salah will undoubtedly be the face of the tournament in June and July, but Egypt’s organizers face a tough task to get ready with kickoff only five months away. Deepening the challenge for the stand-in host country, this will be the first African championship to be increased from 16 to 24 teams.
The tournament also arrives in Egypt at a time of political unease after years of turmoil following a revolution and the overthrow of President Hosni Mubarak in 2011.
RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Ronaldinho has joined the hall of fame of Rio de Janeiro’s famous Maracana stadium.
The 2002 World Cup champion and 2006 Champions League winner with Barcelona was given the honor on Tuesday.
The 38-year-old star joined Pele, Garrincha, Zico and other Brazilian greats who also have footprints in the stadium’s hall of fame.
MELFORT, Saskatchewan (AP) — The driver whose transport truck crashed into a hockey team bus in Canada, killing 16 people, pleaded guilty Tuesday to all charges against him.
Thirteen others were injured when Jaskirat Singh Sidhu’s truck loaded with peat moss collided with the Humboldt Broncos hockey team bus in rural Saskatchewan in April.
The 30-year-old Sidhu pleaded guilty to 16 counts of dangerous driving causing death and 13 charges of dangerous driving causing bodily harm.