News Summaries from The Sports Network - Tuesday, June 2

Peterson back with Vikings after nearly 9 months

Eden Prairie, MN (SportsNetwork.com) - Adrian Peterson is back with the Minnesota Vikings for the first time in almost nine months and says his return to the team went "smooth."

Peterson returned for organized team activities on Tuesday after missing last week's initial spring workout sessions due to friction with upper management.

"I had a long time to really think about things and ultimately what it came down to was getting back in the building," Peterson said.

"I've been working really hard to keep my body in shape and it came down to getting back in the building, being around my teammates, being around the coaches and getting back into the swing of things," he said. "So I reached out and gave them a heads up that, hey, I'll be in town and I'll be coming in."

Peterson missed nearly all of last season after he was indicted in Texas on charges of reckless or negligent injury to a child, having admitted to hitting his 4-year-old son with a tree branch last May.

On Tuesday, Peterson, who has been undergoing counseling, said he "made a mistake."

"I know a lot of people don't view it that way based on what they've seen, but ultimately that's what it was and my son knows that," he said. "He knows I love him and my other kids know the same."

Peterson said the first person he apologized to was his son.

"And that was right after the situation took place and I realized what happened," he said. "I apologized for the mistake that I made. It wasn't my intention, but I've been trying to move forward since."

The NFL reinstated Peterson from suspension in April, but he skipped last week's OTAs amid reports he was unhappy with his situation as he griped about his contract and the team on Twitter.

But on Tuesday, Peterson said he was "happy" to be with the Vikings and ready to get started.

"I would have loved to be out with the guys playing (last season), but that wasn't the case," he said. "After a year of recovery, my body feels good, feels fresh. My body was able to recover, just rest, physically and mentally as well."

Peterson's name was linked to trade rumors throughout the offseason, even as Vikings officials said they wanted him to remain with the team. But Vikings coach Mike Zimmer said Tuesday there were no trade talks involving the 2012 NFL MVP.

Zimmer said the players and coaches welcomed Peterson back because they "know what kind of a person and what kind of a player he is."

"I will help him in any possible way I can and I know the players in this locker room will help him in any possible way they can," Zimmer said. "He's a Minnesota Viking. He's one of our guys. He's going to be wearing the purple with us and fighting with us and sweating with us."

It was a change in tone from Zimmer's comments last week, when the coach said Peterson had two choices: play for the Vikings or not play at all this season.

Peterson, who admitted Tuesday that he contemplated retirement, said last week he wanted security the with team and that his decision not to attend workouts was strictly business.

He has three years and $44.25 million left on his current deal. However, none of that money is guaranteed. Peterson is set to make a base salary of $12.75 million in 2015, $14.75 million in 2016 and $16.75 million in 2017.

Peterson's absence from the Vikings began when he was placed on the commissioner's exempt list on Sept. 17. After reaching a plea agreement in his case, he was suspended by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell in November for violating the league's personal conduct policy.

The suspension was based on a more stringent player conduct policy that was agreed upon after the actions that led to the charges against Peterson.

Arguing that the new policy shouldn't be retroactively applied in Peterson's case, the NFL Players Association filed an appeal on behalf of the running back, which was denied by league-appointed arbitrator Harold Henderson in December.

The union then filed a federal lawsuit, leading to a ruling by U.S. District Judge David S. Doty in February that ordered the NFL to change its decision in Peterson's case.

The NFL appealed the decision to the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals and returned Peterson to the commissioner's exempt list before reinstating him in April.

And last month, the NFL Players Association filed a motion to have the NFL and Goodell held in contempt of court over their handling of the suspension and for ignoring Doty's decision..

Amid all of this, Peterson said he didn't address the team as a whole upon his return Tuesday.

"There's a lot of faces I don't know, but the guys who know me, they addressed me and I addressed them. It was family," he said. "It was different because I haven't been in the building for a long time but the love was there. Everyone who greeted me or I greeted it was with a hug, rubbing on the head or cracking jokes. It was pretty smooth, actually."

Panthers, Newton agree to 5-year extension

Charlotte, NC (SportsNetwork.com) - The Carolina Panthers announced on Tuesday that quarterback Cam Newton signed a new five-year contract extension.

Multiple reports indicate the pact, which is set to expire in 2020, is worth $103.8 million and includes $60 million guaranteed. Additional sources revealed the deal will pay Newton $67.6 million over the first three years, the most in league history for that span.

"I've said all along, Cam is our franchise quarterback and we are absolutely thrilled that we got the extension done," Panthers GM Dave Gettleman said. "It allows us to do the long-term planning that we need to do to make sure that he's surrounded with players and that we can continue to build this team."

Newton led the Panthers to a second consecutive NFC South title despite a 7-8-1 record and guided the club to their first postseason victory since 2005. He finished with 3,127 passing yards, 18 touchdowns and 12 interceptions over 14 games, while adding 539 rushing yards and five more TDs.

All of that came while the franchise exercised the fifth-year option on Newton's rookie deal, which extended that contract through the 2015 campaign.

"This extension shows the commitment we wanted to make to Cam as our franchise quarterback," Carolina head coach Ron Rivera said. "For me personally, he was the first draft pick we ever made and the first pick in 2011 so it continues to solidify that relationship we have with each other."

Selected with the first overall pick by the Panthers in 2011 out of Auburn, Newton has participated in 62 contests over his four-year NFL career. He has completed 1,144-of-1,923 passes for 14,426 yards and 82 scores against 54 picks. He has also rushed for 2,571 yards and 33 TDs.

Saints ink DE Jordan to 5-year extension

Metairie, LA (SportsNetwork.com) - The New Orleans Saints signed defensive end Cameron Jordan to a five-year extension on Tuesday.

With the extension, Jordan, selected 24th overall by the Saints in the 2011 NFL Draft, is under contract for six years through the 2020 season.

According to the Times-Picayune, the deal is worth $60 million.

"Since his arrival, Cameron has progressed into one of the core players on our team both on and off the field," New Orleans general manager Mickey Loomis said. "He's had a great start to his career here and we're excited about him being one of the mainstays to our defense moving forward."

Jordan compiled 51 tackles, 7 1/2 sacks and one interception in 16 starts last season. In 2013, he was selected to the Pro Bowl after posting a career-high 12 1/2 sacks.

The 25-year-old California product has started all but one of 64 games spanning four seasons for the Saints, recording 196 tackles and 29 sacks.

Rams add Jeff Garcia to coaching staff

St. Louis, MO (SportsNetwork.com) - The St. Louis Rams have added former NFL quarterback Jeff Garcia to their coaching staff.

Garcia will serve as an offensive assistant, primarily with receivers coach Ray Sherman. He spent the 2014 season coaching quarterbacks for the Montreal Alouettes of the CFL.

In a 17-year career that included NFL stops with San Francisco, Cleveland, Detroit, Philadelphia and Tampa Bay, as well as a successful four-year run in the CFL, Garcia threw for nearly 42,000 yards.

The San Jose State product was a four-time Pro Bowl selection and was also a four-time CFL All-Star and the league's 1997 MVP. He led Calgary to a Grey Cup title in 1998, then joined the 49ers in 1999.

Texans sign DL Brandon Deaderick

Houston, TX (SportsNetwork.com) - The Houston Texans have signed defensive lineman Brandon Deaderick, who played last season with the New Orleans Saints.

Deaderick, 27, appeared in 13 games for the Saints last season, making eight tackles. He has 62 tackles and 5 1/2 sacks in five seasons with New England, Jacksonville and New Orleans.

The Texans also signed undrafted rookie defensive end Jasper Coleman, who played for William & Mary. They released Mack Brown, a running back from Florida who was signed May 11 after a tryout in rookie minicamp.

Warriors' Thompson cleared for Game 1

Oakland, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson has completed the league's concussion protocol, clearing him to play in Game 1 of the NBA Finals, the team announced Tuesday.

Thompson returned to practice Monday but was questionable for the start of the series with Cleveland on Thursday after suffering a concussion during Game 5 of the Western Conference finals last week when Houston forward Trevor Ariza landed a flying knee to his head.

Thompson averaged 21.7 points, 3.2 rebounds and 2.9 assists in 77 games this season and was an All-Star for the first time in his career. He has averaged 19.7 points, 3.7 rebounds and 2.9 assists this postseason.

Kings' Landry out 4-5 months after wrist surgery

Sacramento, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Sacramento Kings forward Carl Landry underwent surgery on Tuesday to repair a torn ligament in his right wrist, the team said.

The surgery was performed in New York and is expected to keep Landry sidelined for 4-for-5 months, potentially into the start of next season.

Landry averaged 7.2 points and 3.8 rebounds in 70 games this past season. He missed five games in January because of soreness in the wrist, but surgery was only deemed necessary after the pain persisted in the offseason and an MRI was performed this week.

He missed almost three months at the start of the 2013-14 season after having hip surgery.

Wawrinka knocks out Federer; Tsonga reaches French semis

Paris, France (SportsNetwork.com) - Stan Wawrinka hasn't had much success in the past against Roger Federer, but he was clearly the better Swiss player on Tuesday in the quarterfinals at the French Open.

Wawrinka's semifinal opponent on Friday will be heavy French crowd favorite Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, who ousted U.S. Open runner-up Kei Nishikori in five sets on Day 10.

Wawrinka entered Lenglen Court on Tuesday with a lifetime mark of 2-16 against the 17-time Grand Slam champion Federer, but exited with a dominant 6-4, 6-3, 7-6 (7-4) victory that put him into his first French Open semifinal.

Federer had won the past three meetings with his countrymate, including a 6-4, 6-2 thumping in a semifinal in Rome earlier this spring. He had also been 4-0 against Wawrinka at major tournaments, which included fourth-round victories at Roland Garros in 2010 and 2011.

However, on Tuesday, the tables were completely turned.

Wawrinka was the clear aggressor throughout the match in blustery conditions. He blasted 43 winners to just 28 for Federer and kept the 2009 French champion and four-time runner-up on his heels for most of the match.

Federer failed to convert any of his four break-point opportunities and was broken three times by Wawrinka, who last beat Federer for the Monte Carlo title in 2014. His only other victory against Federer also came in Monte Carlo, five years earlier.

The iconic Federer failed to break serve in a Grand Slam match for the first time since 2002 on Tuesday.

Wawrinka, a first-round loser last year on the famed red clay in the French capital, was a quarterfinalist in 2013.

Federer dropped serve for the first time in the third game on Tuesday, then failed to convert a break point in the 10th game before Wawrinka sealed the set. Wawrinka then won four straight games to finish the second.

The third set went to a tiebreak and Wawrinka took control on an overruled line call. A Wawrinka forehand was called out, but the chair umpire said it was good for a 4-3 Wawrinka lead.

Federer was clearly unhappy with the decision and went on to lose the next two points, all but sealing his fate.

"I tried many things," Federer said. "One of them was trying to put it up high. Another one was trying to chip it shorter. Another one was trying to hit through the wind. Obviously I was not going to, you know, leave the French Open without having tried everything out there. So it was tough, you know. Would have loved to have won the breaker, would have loved to come back in the first set, but wasn't so.

"Stan was clutch on the big points and really didn't give me much, so it was a credit to him for playing so well today."

Wawrinka will play in his second major semifinal of the year. He lost to eventual champion Novak Djokovic in the Australian Open semis while trying to defend his lone career Grand Slam title.

The former world No. 1 great Federer has now lost in the quarterfinals or earlier in his last three visits to the French Open. He was also a third-round loser in Melbourne earlier this year.

The amazing Swiss was trying to reach his 37th Grand Slam semifinal.

Meanwhile, the 30-year-old 14th-seeded former Aussie Open runner-up Tsonga reached his second French Open semi in three years by outlasting the fifth- seeded Nishikori, 6-1, 6-4, 4-6, 3-6, 6-3.

Tsonga appeared to be on his way to a straight-set win, with a seemingly comfortable two-set lead, but Nishikori found the range on his big forehand en route to claiming a pair of sets of his own.

But if you were expecting a nail-biting fifth-set showdown, it didn't happen, as Tsonga dominated, much to the delight of the home fans.

Tsonga broke for a 3-1 lead in the fifth and never looked back. The French star earned his first match point when Nishikori sent a forehand long, and converted on it when his Japanese counterpart then floated a backhand long, which prompted an on-court celebration by the affable Tsonga.

"Roland, je t'aime," Tsonga wrote on the red clay, using the sole of his right shoe. He then got down on the court, on his back, with arms and legs spread apart, as the crowd stood and roared their approval. In English, his message read "I love you, Roland."

The French slugger fired 10 aces among his 44 winners in the 3-hour, 44-minute victory.

Tsonga is just the second Frenchman in the Open Era to reach multiple semifinals at Roland Garros.

The Tsonga-Nishikori match was interrupted, with Tsonga leading 6-1, 5-2, when three spectators were injured after a piece of metal fell from the scoreboard at Court Chatrier. The injuries were described as minor.

The situation delayed the quarterfinal bout for about 30 minutes and fans eventually returned to their seats.

Video of the incident showed a long sheet of metal, roughly 15 feet wide, falling from the top of the scoreboard in one corner of the stadium. The sheet, which was covered in spikes to deter birds, appeared to have been dislodged by the wind.

Tsonga will face Wawrinka in the final four. The two have split six career ATP matchups, including a split of two meetings at Roland Garros. The Swiss topped the Frenchman in the round of 32 in Paris in 2011 and Tsonga bested Wawrinka in the round of 16 the following year.

Two more quarterfinals will be staged on Wednesday, including a blockbuster affair between the top-seeded Djokovic and sixth-seeded former world No. 1 and nine-time French Open king Rafael Nadal -- the 14-time major champion who's an incredible 70-1 lifetime at the French.

The other quarter will pit third-seeded Andy Murray versus seventh-seeded 2013 Roland Garros runner-up David Ferrer.

Djokovic lost to Nadal in two of the previous three French Open finals, including last year. Nadal leads their lifetime series 23-20, including 9-3 at the Slams and a perfect 6-0 record at Roland Garros.

Djokovic currently holds the Aussie Open and Wimbledon crowns and has won his last 26 matches on tour overall, including a 13-0 mark on clay this season.

The eight-time major champion from Serbia still needs a French Open title to complete a career Grand Slam.

Nadal has won five straight French Open titles, this following a run of four straight championships from 2005-2008. His lone loss at the French came in the fourth round against Swede Robin Soderling back in 2009.

The "King of Clay" Nadal will celebrate his 29th birthday on Wednesday.

The two-time Grand Slam titlist Murray, who's a perfect 14-0 on clay this year, is 9-6 lifetime versus Ferrer, but has never beaten the Spaniard on clay.

Murray was January's Aussie Open runner-up to the high-flying Djokovic.

Ivanovic, Safarova advance to French Open semis

Paris, France (SportsNetwork.com) - Ana Ivanovic and Lucie Safarova won quarterfinal matches Tuesday at the French Open.

Ivanovic, the 2008 women's champion, rolled to a 6-3, 6-2 victory over Elina Svitolina of the Ukraine and will next play Safarova, who followed her monumental upset of defending champion Maria Sharapova with a 7-6 (7-3), 6-3 triumph over Spain's Garbine Muguruza.

There was little drama for Ivanovic, who needed just 75 minutes to advance to her first Grand Slam semifinal since winning her lone major championship seven years ago on the famed red clay at Roland Garros.

"Obviously, I'm very thrilled to be in my first semifinal at a Grand Slam since 2008," said Ivanovic. "It's been a long road and hard work. And you can't take any victory for granted, let alone a quarterfinal. It's not every day that you reach that -- it's been a long time. So I am really pleased."

The seventh-seeded Serb ripped 37 winners, including 28 on a dominant forehand side, while converting four of her five break-point opportunities. Svitolina, in her first Grand Slam quarterfinal, managed only one break of serve and hit only eight winners in falling to 0-7 lifetime against Ivanovic.

"It was tough conditions, obviously for both of us," said Ivanovic. "It was very, very gusty. I really tried to just execute my game plan and tried to move my feet more because in windy conditions that's just what you have to do."

Ivanovic ascended to the top of the women's rankings after her triumph in the French capital in 2008, but it's been mostly a struggle since. Only twice in the last 27 Grand Slam tournaments has she even reached the quarterfinals -- falling in the round of eight at the 2012 U.S. Open and at the same stage in the 2014 Australian Open.

This week's run has featured a trio of three-set matches, including two when she had to rally after dropping the first set. She'll next have to face an opponent that ended her 2014 French Open stay.

Safarova beat Ivanovic last year in the third round at Roland Garros, a 6-3, 6-3 triumph. The pair also met in the second round in 2008, a 6-1, 6-2 romp for Ivanovic on her way to the title.

"Lucie is a great player. She's showed that many times," Ivanovic added. "She had a great match against Maria, and she won Doha beating Azarenka. And last year I lost in straight sets to her here. She's doing great, and she obviously deserves her spot here. So it's going to be a tough matchup for me."

Overall, Safarova owns a 5-3 advantage in the all-time series.

Safarova advanced to her second career Grand Slam semifinal. She also made the final four last year at Wimbledon, falling to eventual champion Petra Kvitova.

Muguruza was playing in her second straight French Open quarterfinal, but again could not advance farther. She lost to eventual champion Sharapova in three sets last year and on Tuesday had no real answer for Safarova's sharp play.

Safarova won the tiebreak, converting a minibreak on a 26-stroke rally, after neither player managed to break serve in the first set. The Czech failed on six chances to break in the first set, then came up with a pair of breaks in the second and finished the match with a backhand winner.

The remaining two quarterfinal matches will take place Wednesday.

Two-time French champion Serena Williams will take on 2012 runner-up Sara Errani and Timea Bacsinszky of Switzerland will meet Belgium's Alison Van Uytvanck.

Williams, the 2002 and 2013 winner, has had to rally from a set down in each of her last three matches, including Monday's 1-6, 7-5, 6-3 decision over fellow American Sloane Stephens. Errani, who lost to Sharapova in the 2012 final, will play in her fourth straight French quarterfinal.

Bacsinszky, seeded 23rd, knocked off the fourth-seeded Kvitova on Monday in the fourth round to reach her first career Grand Slam quarterfinal. Van Uytvanck is also making her major championship quarterfinal debut, but has yet to face a seeded player in her first four matches.

Devils name John Hynes as new head coach

Newark, NJ (SportsNetwork.com) - The New Jersey Devils have named John Hynes as their new head coach.

Hynes has been the coach for the Pittsburgh Penguins' minor league affiliate in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton since 2010. He was selected for the American Hockey League position by new Devils general manager Ray Shero when he held the same position in Pittsburgh.

The 40-year-old Hynes will be the youngest coach in the NHL. He had a record of 231-126-10-17 over five seasons at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton and guided the team to the AHL playoffs each year.

"This is really exciting for me," said Hynes at a Tuesday press conference. "Ray and I worked well together in the Pittsburgh organization. I felt very comfortable coming in here, knowing what Ray wants from his coaches. That's very important -- to be on the same page with the GM. I'm honored to be the head coach of the New Jersey Devils."

There were reports over the weekend that Phil Housley was the frontrunner for the vacancy, but Shero said no other candidates were offered the position.

"I did not offer this job to anyone other than John Hynes," said Shero on Tuesday.

The Devils have missed the playoffs in each of the last three seasons since making a run to the Stanley Cup Finals in 2012.

Pete DeBoer was fired on Dec. 26 while in his fourth season with the club and the Devils finished the campaign with co-coaches Scott Stevens and Adam Oates behind the bench, along with team president Lou Lamoriello.

Shero said Tuesday no other decisions on the remainder of the coaching staff have been made.

Canadiens, Petry announce 6-year pact

Montreal, QC (SportsNetwork.com) - The Montreal Canadiens revealed on Tuesday that defenseman Jeff Petry has agreed to terms on a six-year contract extension.

Acquired from Edmonton at the trade deadline in March, Petry finished the season with seven points (3G, 4A) over 19 games. Between the Oilers and Habs, he compiled seven goals and 15 assists over 78 appearances.

Petry made his playoff debut with Montreal, totaling two goals and one assist in 12 contests.

A five-year NHL veteran and Michigan State product, the 27-year-old has accumulated 81 points (20G, 61A) but has endured a minus-68 rating over 314 appearances.

Rangers backup G Skapski undergoes hip surgery

New York, NY (SportsNetwork.com) - The story of the New York Rangers' injuries grew larger on Tuesday, as the club announced Mackenzie Skapski underwent hip surgery and is expected to be sidelined for 4-to-5 months.

The 20-year-old backstop had the arthroscopic procedure to repair a labral tear on his right side.

Skapski was called to the NHL for the first time in February, serving as the backup for Cam Talbot, when usual starter Henrik Lundqvist was sidelined with a neck issue.

He finished 2-0-0 with an 0.50 goals-against average and one shutout in that span, while posting a 2.40 GAA, three shutouts and amassing a 15-8-3 mark for Hartford in the AHL.

Reds' Byrd hit by pitch, fractures right wrist

Philadelphia, PA (SportsNetwork.com) - Cincinnati Reds outfielder Marlon Byrd fractured his right wrist when he was hit by a pitch in the Reds' 5-4 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies on Tuesday night.

Byrd was hit on the right hand by Sean O'Sullivan leading off the sixth inning. He was replaced in left field in the bottom of the seventh by Brennan Boesch.

The 37-year-old Byrd is hitting .212 with 10 home runs and 25 RBI.

Dodgers' Van Slyke lands on DL

Denver, CO (SportsNetwork.com) - The Los Angeles Dodgers placed outfielder Scott Van Slyke on the 15-day disabled list Tuesday due to left mid-back inflammation.

Van Slyke has batted .264 with 14 RBI and two home runs in 34 games this season, his fourth with the Dodgers.

Outfielder Chris Heisey was recalled from Triple-A Oklahoma City to take Van Slyke's spot on the active roster and pitcher Ian Thomas was also called up to be the 26th man for the team's doubleheader in Colorado.

Rays designate P Frieri for assignment

Anaheim, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - The Tampa Bay Rays designated pitcher Ernesto Frieri for assignment on Tuesday.

Frieri, who signed a one-year contract with the Rays during the offseason, compiled a 1-0 record with a 4.63 earned run average and two saves over 22 appearances this season.

The 29-year-old right-hander has been on the decline since losing his closer role with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim last season. He was promptly traded to the Pittsburgh Pirates and finished the 2014 campaign 1-4 with 11 saves and a 7.34 ERA.

Frieri owns a career record of 11-13 with a 3.55 ERA in 298 appearances with the Padres, Angels, Pirates and Rays.

The Rays also recalled outfielder Mikie Mahtook from Triple-A Durham.

A's activate P O'Flaherty from DL

Detroit, MI (SportsNetwork.com) - The Oakland Athletics activated reliever Eric O'Flaherty from the 15-day disabled list on Tuesday.

O'Flaherty posted an 0-2 record with an 11.57 earned run average over eight relief appearances before landing on the DL with a strained left shoulder on May 2.

In a corresponding move, the A's optioned pitcher Angel Castro to Triple-A Nashville.

Nats' Harper continues to lead NL All-Star voting

New York, NY (SportsNetwork.com) - Washington Nationals right fielder Bryce Harper continues to lead the National League by a healthy margin in the latest All-Star balloting update.

Harper's voting tally increased to 2,323,186, while San Francisco's Buster Posey moved in front of St. Louis' Yadier Molina for the top spot among catchers with a lead of 137,499 votes.

Two Cardinals players held their positions in voting, as third baseman Matt Carpenter stayed in second place in overall voting and shortstop Jhonny Peralta maintained his lead over San Francisco's Brian Crawford.

Miami Marlins second baseman Dee Gordon and Los Angeles Dodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez remained as the leaders at their respective positions.

Cardinals left fielder Matt Holliday and Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton were second and third in voting for outfielders.

This year's All-Star Game is scheduled for July 14 at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati.

Blue Jays activate Navarro from DL

Washington, DC (SportsNetwork.com) - The Toronto Blue Jays activated catcher Dioner Navarro from the 15-day disabled list following a 2-0 loss to the Washington Nationals in the opener of Tuesday's doubleheader.

Navarro, sidelined by a left hamstring injury, last played on April 21. He was batting .267 with four RBI in eight games prior to his injury.

The Blue Jays also optioned catcher Josh Thole to Triple-A Buffalo and recalled pitcher Scott Copeland from Buffalo for Game 2 of the doubleheader.

Leinart, Crouch headline 2016 College HOF ballot

Irving, TX (SportsNetwork.com) - Former Heisman Trophy winners Matt Leinart, Eric Crouch and Rashaan Salaam are among 76 Football Bowl Subdivision players on the ballot for election into the 2016 class of the College Football Hall of Fame.

Leinart, the 2004 Heisman recipient and a two-time First-Team All-American at Southern California, is on the ballot for the first time. He led the Trojans to three straight national championship games from 2003-05, helping the school to consecutive Associated Press titles in '03 and '04.

Crouch captured the 2001 Heisman as a senior quarterback at Nebraska after leading the Cornhuskers to the national title game that season. He still owns the NCAA record for rushing touchdowns by a quarterback with 59 and led the Huskers to a record of 42-9 with four bowl berths during his career.

Salaam took home the 1994 Heisman as a junior at Colorado, leading the nation with a school-record 2,055 rushing yards while scoring 24 touchdowns that season.

A trio of Pro Football Hall of Famers, running back Eric Dickerson (SMU), linebacker Derrick Brooks (Florida State) and defensive back Rod Woodson (Purdue), are also listed on the ballot, as are former NFL stars Ray Lewis (Miami-Florida), Brian Urlacher (New Mexico), Morten Andersen (Michigan State), Jerome Brown (Miami-Florida), Keith Byars (Ohio State), Randall Cunningham (UNLV), Bert Jones (LSU), Antwaan Randle El (Indiana) and Andre Tippett (Iowa).

Other notable names on the ballot included Terrell Buckley (Florida State), Kerry Collins (Penn State), Tim Couch (Kentucky), Raghib Ismail (Notre Dame) and former Arizona Diamondbacks manager Kirk Gibson -- an All-American wide receiver at Michigan State in 1978.

This year's ballot also contains five ex-FBS coaches: Jim Carlen, Pete Cawthon Sr., Danny Ford, Billy Jack Murphy and Darryl Rogers.

The 2016 College Football Hall of Fame class will be revealed on Jan. 8, three days before the College Football Playoff national championship game in Glendale, Arizona. Induction ceremonies will take place Dec. 6, 2016 in New York City.

Players must have been named a First-Team All American by a major outlet and have at least 10 years since their final collegiate game to be eligible for selection. Additionally, they must have played within the last 50 years and be retired from professional football.

Coaches with at least 10 years and 100 games of experience can be included on the ballot provided they won at least 60 percent of their games and have been retired for a minimum of three years, though active coaches over 75 years old are immediately eligible and there is no waiting period for retired coaches over 70.

Wagner, Michigan blank Florida to even Women's CWS

Oklahoma City, OK (SportsNetwork.com) - Haylie Wagner outdueled National Player of the Year Lauren Haeger as No. 3 Michigan blanked top-seeded Florida 1-0 to even the best-of-three Women's College World Series.

Wagner, who hasn't allowed a run in 20 innings during the CWS, scattered six hits and struck out five.

Game 3 is Wednesday.

Michigan scored its lone run on Kelsey Susalla's RBI first-inning single in against Haeger (31-2), who smacked a two-run homer among her three RBI in leading the defending national champion Gators to a 3-2 Game 1 win.

Sierra Lawrence led off Michigan's half of first with a single to left, advanced to second when Sierra Romero reached on a fielder's choice and crossed the plate on Susalla's base hit to center two batters later.

The Gators' best chances to score came in the second, fourth and sixth innings. Florida had runners on the corners with two outs in the second before Aubree Munro struck out. Bailey Castro popped out and Taylor Schwarz grounded out in the fourth with pinch-runner Jessica Damico at second with one out. Taylore Fuller lined out to shortstop with a runner at second and two away in the sixth.

Wagner punched out two in the seventh to complete her gem.

Florida is seeking to become the third program to win back-to-back Women's College World Series titles.

Chattanooga extends Foster through 2020-21

Chattanooga, TN (SportsNetwork.com) - Chattanooga women's basketball coach Jim Foster had his contract extended through the 2020-21 season on Tuesday.

Foster has been successful over his first two seasons with the Mocs, guiding the team to a 58-8 overall record, including a perfect 32-0 in conference play, and two Southern Conference Tournament titles.

"The accomplishments of our women's basketball program have certainly exceeded our expectations," athletic director David Blackburn said. "Coach Foster has improved upon the program's tradition of excellence, and we want him to finish his Hall of Fame career here at UTC."

Foster was named Southern Conference Coach of the Year after his team upset No. 4 Tennessee and No. 7 Stanford last season.

The 66-year-old previously coached St. Joseph's (1978-91), Vanderbilt (1991-2002) and Ohio State (2002-13).

A 2013 women's basketball Hall of Fame inductee, Foster and C. Vivian Stringer are the only men's or women's college basketball coaches with at least 200 wins at three different schools.

06/02 23:26:48 ET

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