Greene makes cutfor Buchanan Award
HATBORO, Pa. -- Senior defensive back LeVar Greene remains as one of 16 players making the second cut for the Buck Buchanan Battle list.
The second cut was announced Thursday. The Buck Buchanan award honors the nation's top Division I-AA defensive player of the year.
Last year, YSU's Tim Johnson finished third in the voting. Tony Moss of The Sports Network tabbed Greene the nation's best defensive player through the first half of the season.
Greene has had a solid season so far. He leads the team with 12 pass breakups and five interceptions. He has 31 tackles, 23 solo stops, two fumble recoveries, a forced fumble and he blocked a punt against Western Kentucky that was returned for a touchdown.
Niles kickerpicks Akron
NILES -- Senior Billy Sullivan of Niles McKinley High has verbally committed to attend the University of Akron.
Sullivan, a placekicker and punter on the Red Dragons' football team, was 15-for-15 on extra points this season and made three field goals. He also averaged about 40 yards per punt.
Astros tabJimy Williams
HOUSTON -- The Astros hired Jimy Williams as their manager, hoping he can break the club's playoff jinx.
Williams, fired by the Boston Red Sox in August, was among six candidates interviewed by Houston over the last two weeks.
Langer, Licklitershare lead
HOUSTON -- Germany's Bernhard Langer, back at the Tour Championship for the first time in 14 years, shot a 6-under-par 65 for a share of the lead with Frank Lickliter.
Tiger Woods injured his lower right back and struggled to a 70, squatting to stick his tee in the ground and retrieve his ball from the cup, grimacing every time he tried to hit a big drive.
Funk shoots 65
MADISON, Miss. -- Fred Funk, bothered by left shoulder and hand injuries since falling off his son's mini-motorcycle in June, shot a 7-under 65 to take a one-stroke lead after the first round of the Southern Farm Bureau Classic.
Mark Brooks, Dicky Pride and Cameron Beckman opened with 66s.
First picks madefor Team USA
The next NBA version of Team USA has its first seven members, with Jason Kidd at point guard, Reggie Miller and Ray Allen at shooting guard and a pair of players with Indianapolis connections -- Jermaine O'Neal and Antonio Davis -- at center.
Seven of the 12 roster spots for the U.S. team were announced by USA Basketball for the FIBA World Basketball Championship to be played at Conseco Fieldhouse and the RCA Dome next summer.
Small forward Shawn Marion of Phoenix and swingman Michael Finley of Dallas also were selected.
DENVER -- Broncos offensive lineman Dan Neil was fined $15,000 for an illegal block that broke Bryan Cox's right leg during Denver's 31-20 victory over the New England Patriots last weekend.
Also, the league fined Broncos linebacker Al Wilson $5,000 for hitting New England quarterback Tom Brady in the shoulder after a Patriots touchdown.
Davenport in semis
MUNICH, Germany -- Lindsay Davenport won her 14th straight match, beating Jelena Dokic 6-4, 6-2 to reach the semifinals of the Sanex Championships.
The victory allowed Davenport, who has won her last three tournaments, to move forward in her attempt to overtake Jennifer Capriati atop the rankings.
Capriati, who had the day off, can stay at No. 1 by reaching the final.
PARIS -- Gustavo Kuerten, the world's top-ranked player, was beaten 4-6, 6-4, 6-4 by Sjeng Schalken in the Paris Masters.
Also ousted in third-round play was defending champion Marat Safin. Andreas Vinciguerra beat Safin 6-4, 6-4, ending the Russian's hopes of qualifying for the season-ending Masters Cup in Sydney, Australia.
Only Tommy Haas and Sebastien Grosjean can take the last spot in the elite eight-man event.
Haas, seeded seventh, advanced to the quarterfinals by beating Xavier Malisse 7-5, 6-1. Grosjean, seeded sixth, delighted the home audience by eliminating Christophe Rochus, 6-0, 3-6, 6-0.
Fourth-seeded Yevgeny Kafelnikov, who secured the seventh spot in Sydney the day before, beat Albert Costa 6-3, 6-4.
Vindicator staff/wire reports