Associated Press Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditThe Latest on the effects of the coronavirus outbreak on sports around the world:___Chicago Cubs pitching coach Tommy Hottovy is recovering from a severe case of COVID-19 that had him quarantined for 30 days. Auriemma said he’s planning as if there will be a college basketball season but is not sure that will happen. “How are certain teams going to come here and play if they come from a state that’s been severely impacted? I don’t know,” he said.___The Russian soccer league says another game involving FC Orenburg has been called off following an outbreak of coronavirus at the club.The league says the regional public health body did not sign off on Orenburg hosting Ural Yekaterinburg. Orenburg already forfeited a game on Saturday against FC Krasnodar.The league says 10 people at Orenburg have been confirmed to have the virus. The club said last week that six players and two staff members had tested positive. All of the league’s 26 teams are sequestered in hotels in advance of the tournament played without fans at the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex at Disney World. The tournament opens next week.___The Kansas City Royals have launched what they are calling a “Fanbassador” program in which up to 500 fans may purchase a plastic cutout of their likeness for $40 apiece that will be displayed in a seat at Kauffman Stadium during the abbreviated 2020 season.A portion of the proceeds will benefit the Royals Respond Fund, an effort to support Kansas City-area nonprofits that are focused on food insecurity amid the coronavirus pandemic.The idea of putting fan likenesses inside stadiums began in Germany when soccer resumed, and other baseball franchises like the Oakland A’s have proposed the same idea. Season ticket holders will have the first opportunity to purchase their likenesses. The Latest: Cubs coach details harrowing coronavirus fight There was no mention of any plan to reschedule the game.___More AP sports: https://apnews.com/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports July 1, 2020 ___Six FC Dallas players have tested positive for COVID-19 since arriving in Florida for the resumption of MLS play, after every member of the team’s traveling party was negative in league-mandated testing before departing Dallas last Saturday.The team said Wednesday that two players tested positive after arriving in Orlando and were immediately isolated from teammates and FC Dallas coaches and staff, and other MLS clubs and staffs. After more league testing, four more FC Dallas players tested positive.After consultation with MLS medical officials, FC Dallas took proactive steps to isolate the newly affected players as well as all FC Dallas players and staff that are in Florida. All members of the club’s delegation will remain quarantined in their hotel rooms pending the results of further COVID-19 testing.The league says no other team has been in contact with the FC Dallas delegation since its arrival. The 38-year-old Hottovy broke down Wednesday as he detailed a harrowing ordeal during a conference call. The Cubs resume workouts Friday for the first time since Major League Baseball shut down camps on March 12.Hottovy is in his second season as the Cubs’ pitching coach. The former major leaguer said he experienced fevers, breathing trouble and an increased heart rate. The symptoms worsened at night, making it difficult to sleep.Because he didn’t want his wife and young children to catch the virus, Hottovy isolated himself in a spare bedroom at home. He struggled during one Zoom meeting with pitchers, and manager David Ross took over for him.Things got so bad that Hottovy spent eight hours at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago on the 12th day he was sick. He finally tested negative about two weeks ago.Hottovy said he’s still weakened from the illness. He considered opting out of the season while he was sick but decided against that. ___UConn women’s basketball coach Geno Auriemma is asking for help from Congress to get foreign students, including athletes, back to campus.The Huskies have three foreign players on their roster this year: Anna Makurat, a sophomore from Poland; Nika Muhl, a freshman from Croatia, and Aaliyah Edwards, a freshman from Ontario, Canada.The Hall of Fame coach says all three are experiencing issues getting into the United States because of the coronavirus pandemic and he doesn’t know if any of them will be back with the rest of the team on July 26. Auriemma questions why professional athletes have been allowed back from overseas, but not college athletes.“We started asking questions like, ‘Why is that?’” Auriemma said. “We’ve got some really good people in Washington, D.C., looking into how to do that for international students, not just athletes but kids that have enrolled here, gone to school. What is the issue here? Why can’t we get that resolved?”
Henson: Well, they say there is a first time for everything. And now, for the first time ever, a Heisman trophy winner is forfeiting college football’s most coveted award. After months of speculation, Reggie Bush is giving the Heisman back. Bush has embarrassed not only himself in the investigations involving his career at Southern California, but he has embarrassed his university and the Heisman Trophy Trust with his actions. In 2005, Bush was one of the brightest stars in the world of sports, scoring touchdowns left and right, flying into the end zone at heights we had never really seen before. Every Saturday we knew we were going to see some insane highlights come from the Trojan running back, and he captivated an entire country with his remarkable athletic ability. It’s a shame that historic season had to be tarnished. It’s a shame fans can no longer remember Bush for the jukes and the spins. Instead, we are left with a former Heisman winner who is making news due to the poor decisions of his past. All Bush had to do was wait a couple years, wait until his name was called in the NFL draft. The money would be plentiful, and he could support his family with a hard-earned professional salary. Just stay away from the agents, stay away from the temptations. Instead, Bush elected to take improper benefits, and he’s become the face of a growing problem in college athletics. That’s a far cry from being the face of one of the most storied programs in college football. Now, USC has done all they can to erase Bush from their memory. Images and references of the electrifying running back have been removed from anything and everything involving USC. After years of hard work and dedication to a school, all it took was a couple mistakes to ruin a once proud legacy. Pretty embarrassing if you ask me.Holt: Reggie Bush is but one man. Well, I suppose he embarrassed one of college football’s most storied programs as well, but it’s always ‘USC this’ and ‘USC that,’ and I don’t think anybody outside of SoCal was really that upset about the whole thing. Over on the East Coast, the other team I got sick of hearing about on ESPN made yet another headline for some improper treatment of a media type/television personality. No, that “media type” wasn’t Glenn Beck and in that case, I would have hoped the “improper treatment” involved physical violence and a tire iron. Instead, Ines Sainz, of Mexico’s TV Azteca, was the target of the New York Jets and their catcalls on Saturday. Sainz was waiting to interview quarterback Mark Sanchez (A former Trojan and a Jet? Can he be any more overbearing?) at practice and noticed how passing drills curiously seemed to end near and around her for a great portion of the practice. Later, she was reportedly subject to some hoots, hollers and other “H” words, while in the locker room. Whoopsy daisy. You can’t do that. I’ll back up for a second. Sainz is pretty universally recognized as an attractive woman. The Erin Andrews of Mexican sports television, if you will. She’s the kind of woman who could have you buying her dinner and forking over your bank account info in the same night, using nothing more than a pair of tight jeans and a bat of the eyes. So with that information, this behavior doesn’t seem too bad – if you’re a construction worker in the 1950s. Or an eighth-grade traveling football team. Not a professional athlete – or professional anything, for that matter. Don’t give me that “boys will be boys” nonsense. These men were at work – even if work for them is hitting people and catching a ball. Next time you’re at work, try whistling and catcalling a pretty girl. Then count to 10; that’s roughly how much longer you’ll have a job. Come on Jets. Losing to the Ravens in your shiny new home is pretty bad. But getting just as much press for acting like hormone-crazy high school freshmen? Now there’s a Rex Ryan-sized embarrassment.
Behind only the defending national champions in the national poll, the undefeated men’s volleyball team is off to its hottest start in 24 years. After closing out a two-game home stand last week without dropping a set, the team will fly to Honolulu today for two matches against Hawai’i.The No. 2 Trojans (7-0, 6-0 MPSF), who defeated Long Beach State last Wednesday in three sets then swept Cal State Northridge Friday, can maintain a lock on first place in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation standings if they can come back with two more victories.No. 6 Hawai’i (6-2, 3-1) lost both matches to USC last year, taking only one set during the Rainbow Warriors’ trip out to Los Angeles. Head coach Bill Ferguson said it will be crucial for the Trojans to control the energy during the road trip because Hawai’i plays very well in front of its home crowd.“Hawai’i at home is an almost entirely different team than on the road,” Ferguson said. “It’s the best volleyball crowd in America, bar none. They really get behind their team and give them a lift. They’re good for about three points a set.”Despite entering slightly hostile territory on the court, it will still be a nice homecoming for senior setter Micah Christenson, freshman outside hitter Larry Tuileta and redshirt junior middle blocker Tyler Cundiff — all Honolulu natives.The last time the Trojans were in Hawaii they dropped both matches in five sets. In both matches, the Trojans took the first two sets and dominated for most of the third, but it wasn’t enough to match Hawai’i and their support from their home crowd.“Hawai’i fans are so loyal, so helpful to that team,” Christenson said. “They really feed off of it.”Ferguson added that, much like the Trojans, the Rainbow Warriors serve very aggressively and a key to the game will be who can receive serves better.“Hawai’i has some guys that can really get after it from the service line. We’ve been able to pass well and we’re going to need to against Hawai’i because they can serve the daylights out of the ball.”Tuileta and Hawai’i’s sophomore outside hitter Kupono Fey were high school teammates, earning two state championships and two Interscholastic League of Honolulu titles together at Punahou in three years. This will be the first time that the two match up on the court for their respective universities; it will definitely be a change from the time the two were dominating the net for Punahou.The Trojans’ offense, run by redshirt sophomore Christopher Orenic, senior middle blocker Robert Feathers and junior outside hitter Alex Slaught, continues to dominate the net so much so that other teams just can’t seem to contain them. They are averaging 12.9 kills per set with an attack percentage of .323, while holding their opponents to an average of 10.2 kills per set and .166 hitting percentage.In accord with the season, the Trojans are averaging 1.6 aces per set. Christenson continues to dominate the serving with 14 aces on the season averaging .54 per set. The dominance from the back line proves successful for the Trojans.Hawai’i currently sits in fourth place in MPSF standings. Hawai’i took both matches from UC Santa Barbara at home in four sets then split matches at UC Irvine, winning one in four sets but losing one in straight sets.The Rainbow Warriors are led by junior outside hitter Sinisa Zarkovic, senior opposite Brook Sedore and redshirt senior middle blocker Taylor Averill on offense. As a team, Hawai’i averages 13.2 kills per set — more than the Trojans — but their opponents average 13.6 kills per set, which should benefit the Trojans. They also have an average attack percentage of .308, while their opponents average an attack percentage of .287.Similar to USC, Hawai’i also has success from the service line, averaging 1.1 aces per set. Ferguson pointed out that it will be important for USC to be balanced and focus on passing the ball well, like they’ve been doing recently.“Hawai’i has some guys that can really go after it,” Ferguson said. “They can serve the daylights out of the ball.”The Trojans won at UC Irvine in five sets earlier this year but have not yet hit Santa Barbara. UC Irvine is tied for fourth in MPSF standings with Hawai’i, and BYU and Pepperdine are tied for second place at 5-1. Pepperdine’s only conference loss was at USC in four sets earlier this year and BYU will come to town for two matches next week.The top eight teams in the conference will qualify for the MPSF tournament, with the order of seeding determining home-court advantage. The winner of the MPSF tournament will automatically qualify for the NCAA tournament. One automatic qualifier from each of the four Division I conferences will earn a tournament bid and two at large bids will be given.Last year, the Trojans finished 14-10 in the conference, grabbing the last spot in the MPSF tournament. However, they were eliminated by BYU, the regular season winner of the conference, in the first round of the tournament. BYU went on to win the tournament, while Stanford, runner-up in the tournament, grabbed one of the at-large bids. Loyola-Chicago, the only team the Trojans currently trail in the national poll, went on to win the national title.Last week, Cal State Northridge (4-5, 2-3 MPSF) came to the Galen Center unranked in the American Volleyball Coaches Association Top 15 national poll. However, the Matadors were one of three unranked teams receiving votes in the poll. In the most recent poll, the Matadors were still unranked but receiving votes. The Matadors currently sit in seventh place in the MPSF standings.The Matadors upset the Trojans last year at home, winning in straight sets. The Trojans returned the favor when they hosted the Matadors and also won in three sets.Ferguson compared the team’s performance to that of the Seattle Seahawks under former USC football coach Pete Carroll, saying the Trojans kept a simple game plan but executed really well on defense.“We didn’t do anything complicated,” he said. “You listen to Coach Carroll talk about the Seahawks, they talk about doing their thing, and tonight that was us. We didn’t throw a whole lot of different stuff at them, we were just really good at reading what they were doing and getting in front of their attackers as blockers and really affecting what they were doing.”The Trojans honored two former Players of the Year, Tom Duke (1988) and Bryan Ivie (1990, 1991), after the match by retiring their jerseys. Both were members of the 1988 national championship team and Ivie won a second national title in 1990. Duke holds the record for the highest hitting percentage in a game with .941. Ivie holds the record for most career kills with 2,380, single season kills with 770, career blocks with 661 and single season blocks with 199. Ivie also won a bronze medal with the U.S. national team at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics.On Saturday, the Trojans honored Bob Yoder, former player and head coach for the Trojans, at the second annual “Ernie Event” in the Founders Room of the Galen Center. Yoder won the national championship as a player in 1977 then was the head coach of the 1988 national championship winning team. Yoder’s nephews Lucas and Jack are both sophomores on the 2015 team. The Ernie Event is named after legendary former men’s volleyball coach Ernie Hix.The first match against Hawai’i is today at 10 p.m. local time, 7 p.m. Hawaiian time. The two teams play again at the same time on Friday.