NCAA

Unlike Goodell, CFL's Ambrosie had a problem with easy solution and solved it

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USATSI

Unlike Goodell, CFL's Ambrosie had a problem with easy solution and solved it

The Canadian Football League failed once again to be like its massive brother south of Trump’s Second Invisible Wall. It had a problem with an easy solution, and it solved it.

More specifically, commissioner Randy Ambrosie, doubtless in concert with the eight owners who don’t run the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, solved it by nullifying the hiring of former Baylor head coach Art Briles to become the assistant head coach for the Ti-Cats. No fuss, no muss, no investigators, no long drawn-out stall. Just a simple, “This is bad, let’s not do it.”

Briles, who while at Baylor worked tirelessly to run an excellent football team that took a disturbingly active role in hiding sexual assault cases involving his players and was fired as a result, had been hired by the winless Ti-Cats’ coach June Jones over the weekend, to a bi-national hue and cry of “What the hell are you thinking?”

Jones was thinking he knows Briles, felt sorry for his current lot in life and threw him a lifeline despite his revolting role in the Baylor scandal. Jones was also thinking Briles is a bright football mind and the Ti-Cats need all the help they can get.

But Ambrosie was thinking something else, namely, “What the hell are you thinking?” And then he thought something else – that Briles’ employment was a very bad idea that needed to be halted. And so it was, Monday night, before Briles even had a chance to move his stuff into the office.

Ambrosie thus did what Roger Goodell hates doing – acting swiftly to fix an obvious failure in social comprehension – and is being hailed for it because, after all, if a commissioner has any role at all in the modern sports world other than as the boy who fetches the tea, it is to act when the solution is clear to everyone but the fellow who caused the problem.

If there are lessons to be drawn from this, the obvious first one is that shielding people accused of rape is always wrong and when done as many times as Briles did is worthy of exclusion from public work. The second one is that commissioners do not always have to canvass the room for weeks and talk to lawyers for months before doing what it clear to everyone in the room.

It took less than 24 hours to undo the deed. Now that wasn’t so hard, was it?

Louisville has 'effectively fired' head coach Rick Pitino

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AP

Louisville has 'effectively fired' head coach Rick Pitino

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Louisville has placed coach Rick Pitino and athletic director Tom Jurich on administrative leave amid a federal bribery investigation.

Jurich is on paid leave, while Pitino is on unpaid leave. The coach’s attorney, Steve Spence, told the Courier-Journal Wednesday that Louisville has “effectively fired” Pitino.

Pitino’s exit comes after the school acknowledged on Tuesday that the men’s program is part of a federal investigation into alleged bribery of recruits. The 65-year-old coach was not named in the indictment that resulted in the arrest of 10 people including four assistant coaches at other schools and an Adidas executive.

It is the latest black eye for the Cardinals program. Pitino and Louisville are in the middle of appealing NCAA sanctions following an embarrassing sex scandal.

Jurich has supported Pitino through his transgressions during the athletic director’s nearly 20-year tenure at the university.

Cal fights USC into fourth quarter, can't complete the upset

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AP

Cal fights USC into fourth quarter, can't complete the upset

BOX SCORE

BERKELEY -- Stephen Carr ran for a fourth-quarter touchdown two plays after Southern California's defense forced one of its six turnovers and the fifth-ranked Trojans won their 13th straight game, 30-20 over California on Saturday.

USC (4-0, 2-0 Pac-12) has dominated the series with its in-state rival by winning 14 straight against the Golden Bears (3-1, 0-1), but this was one of the tightest matchups in years as the game was tied early in the fourth quarter.

Sam Darnold threw for 223 yards and two touchdowns for the Trojans but also had an interception and was under pressure for much of the day.

It was the defense that stepped up for USC, intercepting a pass from Ross Bowers in the first quarter to set up a field goal and then delivering the big play early in the fourth quarter after Chase McGrath gave the Trojans a 16-13 lead with his third field goal of the game.

Josh Fatu knocked the ball out of Bowers' hand and Uchenna Nwosu recovered the fumble at the 3. Carr ran it in two plays later from the 2 to make it 23-13.

Ykili Ross then intercepted Bowers' pass on the next possession, setting up Darnold's 4-yard TD pass to Deontay Burnett that put away the game.

Bowers finished 22 for 50 for 303 yards with one touchdown, four interceptions and two lost fumbles.

THE TAKEAWAY

SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA: The Trojans struggled for much of the game without starting RB Ronald Jones (ankle) and WR Steven Mitchell (groin) but managed to pull away late in their first road game of the season.

CALIFORNIA: The Bears used an improved defense to start 3-0 under first-year coach Justin Wilcox but this was supposed to be the test of how far they had come. Cal showed plenty by sticking with a national title contender for three quarters. A sequence on the opening drive of the second will haunt the Bears. Patrick Laird dropped a potential TD in the end zone and Matt Anderson then missed a 29-yard field goal that kept the game tied at 13.

POLL IMPLICATIONS

A win against an unranked team should do little to alter USC's poll position.

UP NEXT

SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA: Visits No. 18 Washington State on Friday.

CALIFORNIA: Visits No. 24 Oregon on Saturday.