| DIED |
At age 72, a year and a half after his idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis required a lung transplant, former college basketball coach Charlie Spoonhour. Spoonhour (above), who used such colorful expressions as hickory nut head to criticize players, had a 373--202 record in 19 seasons as a Division I coach. He began his career in 1983 with Missouri State, and took the Bears to the NCAA tournament five times. In '92 he took over a Saint Louis team that had won five games the year before, and in '93--94 he led the Billikens to their first tournament in 27 years. Spoonhour retired briefly in '99, then spent three years at UNLV and twice led the Runnin' Rebels to the NIT. After retiring due to health problems in 2004, he worked as a TV analyst for the Missouri Valley Conference.
| DENIED |
By brothers Marty and Murray Howe, reports that their father, 83-year-old Red Wings legend Gordie Howe, has dementia. The Canadian Press reported last Thursday that Gordie (below) was suffering from dementia similar to the Pick's disease that killed his wife, Colleen, in 2009. "Both as his son and as a physician, I wouldn't call it dementia," Murray, a radiologist, told The New York Times. "It's a very focal, very modest decline—no more than anyone else who's [his age]." Gordie Howe, whose 801 goals and 1,049 assists were once NHL records, now spends much of his time appearing at pro-am hockey tournaments to raise money for the Gordie and Colleen Howe Fund for Alzheimer's.
| DIED |
At age 21 of undetermined causes, Louisiana Tech sophomore running back Tyrone Duplessis. Medics responded to his off-campus apartment after he awoke with chest pain and his roommate made an emergency call. Duplessis, who played for the Bulldogs as a true freshman before a knee injury sidelined him last year and for all but two games this season, was an all-state running back at O. Perry Walker High, in New Orleans. As a Tech freshman in 2009, he had 70 carries for 277 yards, including a 14-carry, 75-yard performance in a nationally televised 27--6 win over Hawaii.
| ANNOUNCED |
By UConn men's basketball coach Jim Calhoun, that he would take an indefinite leave of absence due to back problems. The Hall of Fame coach was diagnosed last summer with spinal stenosis, a very painful narrowing of the spinal canal that limits mobility. According to Calhoun, the pain became overwhelming during the Huskies' road trip to Georgetown on Feb. 1, and he was bedridden for two days afterward. The coach, 69, who has led UConn to three national titles in 25 years, and who is sixth on the alltime wins list with 867, elected not to retire after last season's national championship because he wished to see his program through NCAA sanctions imposed last year for a failure to maintain an "atmosphere of compliance." Calhoun sat out three games earlier this season as part of the punishment. Associate head coach George Blaney will take over in his absence.
| CLOSED |
By the U.S. Attorney's office, the nearly two-year federal investigation into allegations that seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong (right) used and distributed performance-enhancing drugs while he was the leader of the U.S. Postal Service team from 1999 to 2005. The office gave no reason for ending the investigation, which began because of accusations by Armstrong's former teammate Floyd Landis in April '10. Another teammate, Tyler Hamilton, made similar allegations on 60 Minutes a few days later. "It is the right decision," Armstrong said in a statement. "I look forward to continuing my life as a father, a competitor, and an advocate in the fight against cancer without this distraction." The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, which has also been looking into the case, says that its investigation remains open.
| STRIPPED |
Of his 2010 Tour de France victory, by the Court of Arbitration for Sport, Alberto Contador, who tested positive during that year's Tour for clenbuterol, which dilates breathing passages and is used by athletes as a performance enhancer. Contador, 29, who was also banned from cycling for two years, had contended that the positive test stemmed from his ingestion of contaminated meat. The decision also erases his racing results from Jan. 25, 2011, until now. Contador will receive credit for a provisional five-month, 19-day suspension he served during parts of '10 and '11, and will be eligible to compete again on Aug. 6, meaning he will miss the Giro d'Italia, the Tour de France and the London Olympics. He has not commented on the decision. Austrian rider Andy Schleck, the runner-up to Contador in '10, has been elevated to Tour champion.
| SCORED |
By the Jacksonville Giants (left) of the American Basketball Association, 211 points, in a win last Saturday over the Columbus Riverballers (who put up 84), breaking the scoring record for the 12-year-old ABA, and believed to be the most points ever in a pro basketball game. Here's a pointed look at the top scoring teams across the hoops spectrum.
Dec. 13, 1983
Pistons over Nuggets (184)
Jan. 5, 1991
Loyola Marymount over Alliant Int'l (140)
July 24, 2010
Mercury over Lynx (124)
Feb. 16, 1987
Long Beach State over San Jose State (69)
NHL PLAYERS POLL
Who is the toughest goalie to beat in a shootout?
Henrik Lundqvist, Rangers 28%
Pekka Rinne, Predators 28%
Marc-Andre Fleury, Devils 8%
Ryan Miller, Sabres 7%
Tim Thomas, Bruins 5%
Lundqvist, who leads the NHL in save percentage (.939) won the All-Star Skills Competition, stopping six of seven shootout attempts.... The pick of a whopping 40% of players from his own Western Conference, Rinne ranks first among active goalies in career shootout save percentage (.784).... Fleury, just 20th in overall save percentage, leads the league with seven shootout wins.... In a similar poll on Facebook, Lundqvist filled the top slot with 31% of the votes, ahead of Thomas (30%), while Rinne tallied just (7%).
Based on 186 NHL players who responded to SI's survey
Consecutive goals by Manchester United over a two-game stretch that came from the penalty spot, an English Premier League record.
Jersey number Vikings RB Adrian Peterson announced he wanted to adopt, replacing his current 28.
Amount Peterson would have to pay to Reebok to buy back outdated jerseys, leading him to stay with 28.
Miles from the North Pole to the South Pole run over 262 consecutive days by 48-year-old Australian Pat Farmer, who raised $100,000 for the Red Cross.
World-record number of water-skiers towed by one boat, in Tasmania's Macquarie Harbour, surpassing by 31 the mark set two years ago in the same harbor.
Consecutive losses by the Clippers to the Jazz in Salt Lake City, dating to 2003, before L.A. won 107--105 on Feb. 1.
Clippers' record in Salt Lake City before the lone win in '03.
BOBBY KING/JACKSONVILLE.COM (GIANTS)
DAVID E. KLUTHO (SPOONHOUR)
DAVE SANDFORD/NHLI/GETTY IMAGES (HOWE)
SCOTT CUNNINGHAM/NBAE/GETTY IMAGES (WNBA BALL)
ELIZABETH KREUTZ (ARMSTRONG)
CHUCK MYERS/MCT/ZUMAPRESS.COM (LUNDQVIST)
JOHN RUSSELL/NHLI/GETTY IMAGES (RINNE)