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SPORTS BRIEFS

Basketball

RUCKUS DEADLINE EXTENDED: Roundball Ruckus keeps on rolling and organizers have extended the registration deadline until noon Wednesday.

The seventh annual three-on-three basketball tournament, sponsored by the Deseret News, the Utah Jazz and Coca-Cola, will be played May 29 through June 1 at South Towne Center, 10600 South and I-15 in Sandy.

Each team consists of four players, and teams are bracketed based on age, experience and even height. The cost per team is $80, but teams can save $10 by including four, 12-pack proofs of purchase from any Coca-Cola product.

Registration forms are available at all 7-11 stores and Smith's and must be delivered to Coca-Cola, 875 S. West Temple by Wednesday at noon.

Nearly 2,000 teams are expected to participate. For more information, call 1-800-989-4087.

RODMAN'S MONEY WOES: Dennis Rodman was nearly bankrupt before he joined the Chicago Bulls last year, SmartMoney magazine reported in its June issue.

The magazine said Rodman was more than $1 million in debt because his spending sprees and forays to Las Vegas had gobbled up his $2.5 million salary. He had trouble covering his $9,000 monthly alimony payment and had not made a payment on a $500,000 house loan for five years.

NO TURNING BACK: Massachusetts star Marcus Camby has signed a contract with ProServ, ending any chance the junior center would return for his final year of eligibility.

Camby, the national player of the year, had already declared for the June 26 NBA draft. Under NCAA rules, once a player signs with an agent he no longer is eligible to play in college.

JORDAN'S FATHER: A man who helped send a friend to prison for life for killing Michael Jordan's father received the same sentence.

Jurors deliberated about two hours before deciding Larry Martin Demery, 20, should not be executed for his role in the 1993 murder of James Jordan.

Demery pleaded guilty last year to first-degree murder in the death of Jordan, 57, and testified against Daniel Andre Green, 21. Green, whom Demery said shot Jordan in his car, was sentenced to life in March.

Baseball

SURGERY FOR BUTLER: Brett Butler, the Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder diagnosed with cancer of the right tonsil, was scheduled to undergo surgery this morning at Emory University Hospital.

A malignant tumor was discovered and removed when Butler, 38, underwent a tonsillectomy earlier this month.

PHILLIPS CASE: In Milwaukee, a prosecutor questioned Chicago White Sox outfielder Tony Phillips for two hours and said she hadn't decided whether to file charges against him for punching a heckling fan last week.

Assistant District Attorney Rayann Chandler-Szychlinski said she still had several people to interview, including Chris Hovorka, 23, of Racine, Wis., whom Phillips punched twice in the jaw during a game May 15.

The Milwaukee County sheriff's department has recommended Phillips be charged with misdemeanor battery, and is seeking a disorderly conduct charge against Hovorka.

SECOND OPINION: After two months of frequent flying to Baltimore, Minnesota Twins star Kirby Puckett will stay closer to home for a second opinion on the status of his blurred vision.

Puckett was to visit Dr. Bert Glaser at the Retina Institute in Baltimore today. He will head to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. - a short drive from the Twin Cities - on Thursday.

Football

MORE 'BAMA SANCTIONS: The NCAA stripped Alabama of another scholarship, this time for failing to notify it of loans to players guaranteed by a Birmingham tire dealer. The action brings to 14 the number of 1996-97 scholarships taken from Alabama for violations of NCAA rules.

In August, Alabama was placed on three years' probation for violations involving former players Gene Jelks and Antonio Langham. The punishment included the reduction of some two dozen scholarships, forfeiture of 11 games in 1993 in which Langham played, and a postseason ban last season.

WEAVER PLEADS GUILTY: Ron Weaver, a California man who played at the University of Texas last season under an assumed identity, pleaded guilty to misusing a social security account number.

Weaver, 30, took the name of a younger acquaintance, Joel Ron McKelvey, after his own eligibility to play college football expired at Sacramento State in 1989.

FRENCH OPEN SEEDINGS: Pete Sampras, the top-ranked player in the world who is still seeking success on clay, was designated the top seed in the French Open ahead of defending champion Thomas Muster.

The organizing committee for the two-week tournament that opens May 27 went along with the world rankings despite Muster's dominance on clay courts. Steffi Graf and Monica Seles share the top position on the women's side.

WORLD TEAM CUP: In Duesseldorf, Germany, Marc Rosset upset Boris Becker 7-6 (7-4), 6-4 and Jakob Hlasek beat David Prinosil 3-6, 6-1, 6-3 as Switzerland beat Germany 3-0 in the first round of the World Team Cup.

In the other Red Group match, Sergi Bruguera beat Thomas Enqvist 1-6, 6-4, 6-4 and Alberto Costa defeated Magnus Larsson 6-2, 6-3 to lead Spain to a 2-1 victory over Sweden.

College

BIG 12 STANDARDS: Big 12 presidents, overruling most of their football coaches, voted to proceed with initial eligibility standards that are tougher than the NCAA's and those of most other conferences.

With Texas threatening to bolt the conference last December, Big 12 presidents voted unanimously to let each school enroll two male and two female partial qualifiers each year, and exclude non-qualifiers altogether.

Under the NCAA's Proposition 16 requirements, partial qualifiers lack either the minimum standardized test score for freshman eligibility or the minimum grade point in core courses. They can practice and receive financial aid as freshmen, but cannot play.

Softball

MILLER TOYOTA: The Larry H. Miller Toyota fastpitch team, ranked No. 2 in the world, split their weekend efforts against the Tampa Bay Smokers, a team rated No. 5 in Clearwater, Fla.

Dwayne Dyck (8-2) won both games he pitched against the Smokers, 7-1, and 2-1. Saturday night's 2-1 victory came after tying the score, 1-1, in the sixth inning on Gary Daniels' RBI triple, scoring Pete Spoerl, who had singled.

In the seventh inning, with two outs, catcher Kenny Garinger's RBI triple brought Brian Lehrman, who had singled, home.

Now, Miller Toyota (16-4) enters a tournament Friday night in Erie, PA., in which the team will face No. 1 ranked Toronto Gators, Saturday at 5:30 p.m. (MDT). Of course, the Gators, with Darren Zack, defeating Miller Toyota for the ISC World Championship last August.