By Bernard Lagat, the 1,500 and the 5,000 meters at the U.S. track and fieldchampionships in Indianapolis (page 148), making him the first to sweep theevents at the nationals. This was the first U.S. championships for Lagat, 31, aKenyan who became a U.S. citizen in 2004. He won the 5,000 last Friday, and onSunday he outsprinted Gabe Jennings on the final lap to take the 1,500 in3:39.29. Now Lagat (above), who holds the U.S. record in the 1,500, will turnhis attention to the '07 world championships, where he will compete as anAmerican for the first time. "I got a really warm reception here," hesaid. "I feel like there's a connection with the people ... they're saying,'You're a part of us.'"
By the Big Ten, plans for a 24-hour cable network. The Big Ten Channel isexpected to launch in August 2007 and carry live events and highlight shows,including football and basketball games and 170 contests in lower-profilesports such as baseball, tennis and gymnastics. It will also reserve time formember schools to broadcast nonsports and academic programming. "Parentswant to see their kids play," said Wisconsin athletic director BarryAlvarez. "Now they'll be able to."
By a group of current and former NFL players, the league and the NFL PlayersAssociation, for endorsing an Atlanta-based investment firm run by an allegedlycrooked money manager. Last month Kirk Wright, 35, was arrested in Miami andcharged with mail fraud; he allegedly bilked clients, including former BroncosSteve Atwater, Ray Crockett and Terrell Davis, out of as much as $185 million(SI, April 3). Wright was registered as a financial adviser by the union andsubjected to a background check by the league's security department. SaidAtwater, whose group is seeking unspecified damages, "The NFL and theplayers association failed us."
By Anaheim's NHL franchise, the word Mighty from its name. The former MightyDucks of Anaheim will now be known simply as the Anaheim Ducks. The team wasnamed after the Disney film The Mighty Ducks, but with new owner Henry Samuelihaving taken over from Disney in June 2005, an image overhaul is under way."It's time we separate ourselves from Disney," said G.M. Brian Burke."Without them, there's no team here. But it's time."
By University of Portland soccer star Christine Sinclair, the Honda-BroderickCup as the NCAA's top female athlete. Sinclair (above) set a single-season NCAArecord with 39 goals as a senior and led the Pilots to the nationalchampionship, and she finished her career as one of just six players in NCAAhistory to have 100 goals and 30 assists. The other finalists were LSU'sSeimone Augustus, the basketball national player of the year; Texas pitcher CatOsterman; Georgia swimmer Mary DeScenza; and Alabama gymnast Ashley Miles.
By Lance Armstrong, new allegations that he used performance-enhancing drugs.Last Friday the French newspaper Le Monde reported that it had obtained swornstatements made to an arbitration panel by Betsy Andreu, the wife ofArmstrong's former U.S. Postal Service teammate Frankie Andreu, whichimplicated Armstrong. Andreu reportedly said that on Oct. 28, 1996, three daysafter Armstrong underwent surgery to treat the testicular cancer that hadspread to his brain, she heard Armstrong tell a doctor that he had used EPO,growth hormones and steroids. (Andreu testified last January in the arbitrationcase over Armstrong's prize money for winning the 2004 Tour de France, whichwas withheld after doping allegations were made against the cyclist.) Armstrongreleased a two-page denial last Friday, calling the report "stale,unfounded and untrue."
In a court filing by federal authorities investigating the leaks of secrettestimony given by Barry Bonds, Jason Giambi and others in 2004, that BALCOfounder Victor Conte told San Francisco Chronicle reporter Mark Fainaru-Wada inan e-mail of an admission by Giambi to the grand jury that he used steroids.Conte (above), who was provided the grand jury testimony so he could prepare adefense against steroid distribution charges--he pleaded guilty last year andserved four months in jail--joked in another e-mail exchange that he should beplaced on the newspaper's payroll in exchange for information about athletes'testimony. His lawyer, Mary McNamara, said last week that "Mr. Conte didnot leak grand jury transcripts." Fainaru-Wada and Lance Williams, theauthors of the book Game of Shadows, are fighting subpoenas that would forcethem to testify in the government probe.
By the Indy Racing League and Champ Car World Series, a preliminary ownershipsharing agreement that could lead to a merger of the rival racing circuits. Inthe 1980s and '90s open-wheel racing flourished under the management ofChampionship Auto Racing Teams, but in '96 Indianapolis Motor Speedway CEO TonyGeorge split from CART and founded the IRL. The ensuing feud between CART andthe IRL coincided with a decline in the popularity of both circuits. (CART wentbankrupt in 2004 and was replaced by the Champ series.) According to TheIndianapolis Star, the first step toward a merger could be having drivers fromboth series compete at next year's Indianapolis 500, an IRL event. "We'veagreed conceptually," George told the paper. "Now we have to agree onhow we would go about resolving differences that might come up."
By Raiders receiver Randy Moss, a franchise of the Colorado-based fruitsmoothie chain Inta Juice, in Charleston, W.Va. Moss (above) fell in love withthe juice bar's products--his favorite is Caribbean Blend, a concoction ofpeach, pineapple, orange, strawberry, and banana--during his days with theVikings, whose training facility was near an Inta outlet. "I think it's agood fit," said Moss, who served smoothies at the store's grand openinglast Saturday. "We really didn't have anything here in town ... that tastedlike this and [is] as healthy as it is."
Rainouts at Fenway Park this year, the most the Red Sox have had at home in aseason since 1989.
Home runs hit by the Phillies' Bobby Abreu before the All-Star break last year,when he won the Home Run Derby at the All-Star Game.
Home runs, in 145 games, by Abreu since the Home Run Derby.
E-mails sent to FIFA by fans angered by the officiating in South Korea's 2--0World Cup loss to Sweden, a deluge that forced FIFA to block all messages fromSouth Korea.
Height cleared by Bill Wambach, 80, at the Badger State Games in Madison, Wis.,last week, a new U.S. high jumping record for octogenarians.
Andre Agassi, anenfant terrible turned tennis statesman, decides to hang it up
IN 1989 Andre Agassi, then an 18-year-old bundle of boorishness, played a DavisCup match against Paraguay and publicly mocked his overmatched opponent. "Iwasn't making fun of him," Agassi said. "I was making fun ofParaguay." Contrast that with the tableau in the Wimbledon pressroom lastSaturday when Agassi, now 36, explained his decision to retire following theU.S. Open, which begins on Aug. 28. "It's starting with my family, startingwith what it takes to be out here and compete on this level," he said,choking back tears. "I have to make sure I approach this through the senseof what's best for who I care about the most."
You'd behard-pressed to find an athlete who matured as much as Agassi did over thecourse of a career. As his frosted, shoulder-length hair gave way to baldness,Agassi metamorphosed from a crass, commercialized punk into a dignified elderstatesman. Along the way he won each of the four Grand Slam titles, spentconsiderable time in the rankings penthouse and outlasted all his peers. Hewill go down as one of the five best players of the Open era.
But--this isalmost inconceivable to those who remember him early in his career--Agassi willbe recalled as much for his sportsmanship and philanthropy. In the end, he gotit. Substance matters. His tennis capstone might as well read IMAGE IS NOTHING.--L. Jon Wertheim
JEFF GENTNER/AP (MOSS)
PAUL SAKUMA/AP (CONTE)
STEVE GIBBONS (SINCLAIR)
RACKET MAN Agassi has 60 singles titles and seven Grand Slam wins.