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home : sports : regional July 22, 2014

2/19/2014
Quick Hits

COLLEGE

QB Testifies in Bid To Form College Union

CHICAGO -- Northwestern quarterback Kain Colter testified Tuesday that he was essentially paid to play via his scholarship as the National Labor Relations Board opened a closely watched hearing on a bid to form what would be the first union for college athletes in U.S. history.

From a witnesses stand in a federal court building, Colter characterized playing college football as a job and said schools make clear to incoming players that athletics are a higher priority than academics.

Colter, a co-founder of the newly formed College Athletes Players Association, said players adhere to grueling schedules, putting in 40- to 50-hour weeks on football during and before the season. During August training, he said, players wake at 8 a.m. and often only finish practice at 10 p.m.

"It's a job, there is no way around it -- it's a job," said Colter, a 21-year-old senior whose college career is over.

Asked why Northwestern gave him a scholarship of $75,000 a year, he responded: "To play football. To perform an athletic service." Later, he said players earn the money, in part, "by sacrificing our bodies."



Go Green

NASCAR

Bestwick Named Indianapolis 500 Announcer

ORLANDO, Fla. -- Allen Bestwick has agreed to a multi-year deal with ESPN and will become the lap-by-lap announcer for the network's coverage of the IndyCar Series.

He'll call the Indianapolis 500 and four other IndyCar races on ABC. ABC will televise the Indy 500 for the 50th straight year. He'll work in the booth with Scott Goodyear and Eddie Cheever.

Bestwick had been part of ESPN's NASCAR coverage since 2007. He'll continue to anchor the network's NASCAR Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series telecasts in 2014, the final year of ESPN's contract to televise live NASCAR racing.

BASEBALL

Cuban Player Hit in Face with Bat in Brawl

HAVANA -- A bench-clearing brawl in which a ballplayer hit a rival in the face with a bat disgusted sports fans and pundits bemoaning the state of Cuba's national sport on Tuesday.

The trouble came in the seventh inning after Matanzas catcher Eriel Sanchez hit a solo home run off right-hander Freddy Asiel Alvarez. Alvarez beaned the next man up at the plate, Yasiel Santoya.

Two batters later Alvarez came back in high-and-tight on Victor Victor Mesa, plunking the coach's son in the upper arm.

Video images show Matanzas' Demis Valdes charging the mound brandishing a wooden bat at Alvarez, who rips off his glove and hurls it him. Valdes takes a vicious right-handed cut, though it's not clear if he misses the ducking pitcher or deals a glancing blow.

But Valdes' backswing catches Villa Clara captain and first baseman Ramon Lunar in the face, knocking him to the ground.

Both dugouts emptied as coaches and players met in a scrum near the third-base line that resulted in a long delay. Lunar was hospitalized overnight for observation, but not seriously injured.







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