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Sports briefs


NEW A.D. AT SUU: Southern Utah University has signed Michael Sumpter as its new athletic director. He is a two-time athletic director and is presently serving at the University of Nebraska-Kearney, a school much the same size as SUU.

Sumpter previously served as the A.D. of Colorado Christian University in Lakewood, Colo. He is replacing Jack Bishop at SUU, who is retiring after many years of service as the head football coach and athletic director.

Sumpter was one of 50 candidates from around the country who applied for the post.

"Our screening committee worked diligently to review the applications of many candidates," said Dr. Gregory Stauffer, chair of the screening committee. "I salute their effective efforts and contributions and am very confident that we have found a seasoned, effective leader and athletic administrator in Mike Sumpter."


FREEZZ SIGNINGS: Rob Baarts and Matt Hein, the 2000 draft picks of the Utah Freezz, officially signed contracts with the second-year franchise on Monday. Baarts joins the Freezz for his eighth season of professional soccer, having previously played for Portland.

Hein is entering his first season of professional soccer. He recently finished college at Indiana-Purdue at Fort Wayne.

Utah begins its season with an exhibition game against Holland on July 29.

DECISION UPHELD: Soccer's governing body, FIFA, upheld the contentious vote for the 2006 World Cup that was won by Germany.


WILLIAMS FINED: The second and third technical fouls of coach Fred Williams' entire career were costly. The WNBA has fined the Utah Starzz coach an additional $1,500 for verbally abusing the referees and failing to leave the court in a timely manner following his ejection with 15:48 remaining in the Starzz 73-69 loss to the Detroit Shock July 7.

The fine is the third-largest in the three-plus years of the WNBA. Phoenix Mercury head coach/general manager Cheryl Miller has previously been fined $5000 and $2,500. Richie Adubato of the New York Liberty was also dealt a $1,500 fine.

Including the two $150 fines for each technical received in Friday's loss to the Shock, Williams's grand total will equal $1,800.

Williams and the 9-10 Starzz return to action Wednesday night in the Delta Center hosting the expansion Portland Fire, 5-12, at 7 p.m. Utah is 1-0 against the Fire this season.

NO CONTEST FOR COLEMAN: Charlotte Hornets forward Derrick Coleman pleaded no contest to a disorderly conduct charge stemming from an incident in a Detroit restaurant. Coleman paid a $100 court fine and has to run a free basketball clinic for underprivileged children in the city. He also received six months probation.


NEW COTTONWOOD COACH: When Steve Coburn recently announced his resignation as head football coach at Cottonwood High, the Colts' administration didn't have to look far to find a late replacement.

The Colts went back for their future, hiring Tom Jones to be the new coach for the upcoming season. Jones is a familiar name for Cottonwood faithful. He is currently the school's athletic director and was the head football coach for the Colts from 1979-90.

During his tenure at Cottonwood, Jones led the Colts to a 52-68 record. His teams made the playoffs five times, including semifinal appearances in '79 and '84 and a quarterfinal showing in '87.

After two rough years at Cottonwood and a previous stint at Ogden High, Coburn is leaving the prep ranks to take an assistant job at Snow College.

XFL IN VEGAS: Las Vegas will be awarded a franchise in the new Xtreme Football League, the director of Sam Boyd Stadium said.

Pat Christenson told the Las Vegas Review-Journal that the XFL will conduct a news conference Thursday at Sam Boyd Stadium to announce the move.

The XFL will begin play in February, with teams also in New York; Los Angeles; Orlando, Fla.; Memphis, Tenn.; Chicago; and San Francisco. Birmingham, Ala., is also expected to field a team.

The XFL is owned by NBC and the World Wrestling Federation.

McDONALD RETIRES: Safety Tim McDonald, released five months ago by the San Francisco 49ers, retired after 13 NFL seasons. McDonald, 35, played in the Pro Bowl six times.

LANE REMEBERED: Fred Lane was remembered by his former NFL teammates and coaches for an unabashed running style on the football field and a penchant for locker-room pranks.

Former Carolina Panthers head coach Dom Capers, linebackers coach Sam Mills, cornerback Doug Evans and several other members of the team were among some 500 mourners at a church visitation for Lane, 24, who was shot to death last week.

Lane, the Panthers' career rushing leader who joined the Indianapolis Colts this offseason, was killed Thursday in his home. Police said Lane's wife, Deidra, shot him, but no charges have been filed in the case. He will be buried Tuesday in his hometown of Franklin, Tenn.

ON BOARD WITH THE JETS: The New York Jets signed defensive end Shaun Ellis and linebacker John Abraham, the first two of the team's unprecedented four first-round draft picks.


AMERICA'S BEST: Michael White (Sioux City, IA) made his World Championship debut with USA Softball a memorable one, throwing a no-hitter Monday night against host South Africa, as the U.S. National Team improved to 4-0 overall with a 4-0 decision.

White, who missed a perfect game by default of a fifth-inning error, has played in four previous World Championships, but all were with the New Zealand National Team.


DEVIL OF A RANGER: The New York Rangers signed defenseman Vladimir Malakhov from the Stanley Cup-champion New Jersey Devils. Malakhov, acquired by the Devils from Montreal on March 1, signed a four-year, $14 million deal with a one-year option with New York.

Malakhov missed the Canadiens' first 53 games with a knee injury. He had a goal and four assists in 24 regular-season games with the Devils, and a goal and four assists in the playoffs.