NCAA

Stanford beats Notre Dame 28-14, finishes regular season 11-1

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Stanford beats Notre Dame 28-14, finishes regular season 11-1

BOX SCORE

STANFORD (AP) -- Andrew Luckwalked back into the overcrowded home locker room at Stanford Stadium,greeted by hugs and handshakes and serenaded with a chant that suitedhim just perfectly."Macho, Macho man!" teammates bellowed, singing the lyrics to the Village People's famous song. "I want to be a Macho man!"Only one has earned that title on The Farm.Luck set the school record for themost career touchdown passes and eclipsed his own single-season mark,throwing for 233 yards and four scores to lead fourth-ranked Stanfordpast No. 22 Notre Dame 28-14 in his home finale Saturday night.Luck topped John Elway's record of 77touchdown passes and helped the Cardinal (11-1) build a 21-0 halftimelead. He has thrown for 80 touchdowns in three years - while it tookElway all four - and 35 this season."There's no player in America like Andrew Luck," Stanford coach David Shaw said. "Forget about the stats. Forget about the comparisons of other guys. It doesn't matter."Luck of the Irish? Forget it.Luck is on Stanford's side.The victory likely vaulted theCardinal into consideration for an at-large BCS bowl bid for the secondstraight year - with the Fiesta Bowl among the leading possibledestinations - but they will not play for a major championship thisseason. The lone loss to Oregon put the Ducks in the Pac-12 title gameout of the North Division and crushed Stanford's dreams of a nationaltitle."I think one loss, that's great,"said Luck, who turned down a chance to be the NFL draft's top pick thisyear. "We've been on a 23-2 run for a while, I think it's prettyimpressive. We put ourselves in position to be in a good bowl game, andthat's what we wanted to do."Notre Dame's stumbled at the finish line again.Tommy Rees threw an interception, lost a fumble and took a bruising blow to the ribs for Notre Dame (8-4) before getting benched. Andrew Hendrix threw for 192 yards and a touchdown and ran for another score in a second-half rally for the Fighting Irish that came up short.Keeping Stanford close gave the Irish little satisfaction."We didn't come here for secondprize," said Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly, who would not name astarting quarterback for the bowl game. "We got off to a slow start andbattled against it. To me, the scoreboard showed 28-14 and that's notgood enough. The slow start put us in a tough position."Stanford coach David Shaw shined thespotlight on his program and his quarterback's Heisman Trophy campaignwith a calculated rip of the "flawed" BCS system this week. TheCardinal's play matched his words for 30 minutes.A sloppy second half almost took everything else Stanford had worked for this season.Kelly benched Rees in favor ofHendrix to start the third quarter, and the move pumped some life intoa stagnant Irish offense. Notre Dame took advantage of passinterference and roughing the passer penalties for its first score.Hendrix threw a 6-yard TD to Michael Floydto slice Stanford's lead to 21-7 halfway through the third quarter.Floyd finished with 95 catches on the year, breaking the single-seasonmark of 93 set by Golden Tate in 2009.The Irish were driving for another score when Hendrix overthrew a receiver, the ball was tipped and intercepted by Michael Thomas. When Notre Dame regained possession, Hendrix was sacked by A.J. Tarpley for a 13-yard loss that sent another drive tumbling."Consistency is the one thing I have struggled with the most," said Hendrix, who completed 11 of 24 passes.Only room for one quarterback to steal the show.Luck quickly connected with Coby Fleenerfor a 55-yard TD pass to extend Stanford's lead to 28-7 with 5:40remaining to put the game out of reach. Fleener also caught a 28-yardTD in the first half that gave Luck every major school touchdownrecord.Stanford's Senior Day belonged to the redshirt junior.Luck lobbed a fade to the short corner of the end zone to complete a 3-yard score to Levine Toilolo,giving Stanford a 7-0 lead in the first quarter. Even he had to holdback a smile running to the sideline to a swarm of well-wishes fromteammates for the records-tying toss.But Luck lost his rhythm when a back-side blitzer closed the pocket, and he tossed a short pass that Darius Flemingintercepted and returned 35 yards. Notre Dame took over at the Stanford10 after a 15-yard penalty on Fleener for a horse collar.Stanford stifled the Irish on consecutive plays and forced a 20-yard field goal that David Ruffer missed wide right.Luck followed with a 28-yard TD pass to Fleener. The tight end dragged cornerback Robert Blanton the final 10 yards into the end zone, sealing Luck's marks in the school record book."I think it's something I'll be ableto tell my kids and grandkids when I'm watching Andrew on TV someday,"Fleener said. "He's got my Heisman vote."

Pac-12 basketball teams near Barcelona terrorist attack safe

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AP

Pac-12 basketball teams near Barcelona terrorist attack safe

Men's basketball teams from Oregon State, Clemson and Arizona were staying at a hotel in Barcelona, Spain, near where a van drove into pedestrians on Thursday, but team officials said everyone was safe.

Spanish police have confirmed they are investigating the bloodshed in Barcelona's historic Las Ramblas district as a terror attack. The area is a popular summer tourist spot.

Tulane also was playing in Barcelona, but it was unclear if they were staying in the same hotel as the other teams.

Oregon State assistant coach Gregg Gottlieb posted to Facebook: "We are all luckily ok. Our hotel/restaurant is located right on Las Ramblas. This tragedy happened right in front of us as our team just sat down for pregame meal. Thoughts and prayers for all those that are were hurt."

The Beavers' game Thursday night was canceled. It was supposed to be the first of a five-game tour.

Clemson was scheduled to play Thursday night against a Spanish All-Star team.

"We've been in contact with our men's basketball program currently in Barcelona and the entire travel party is safe and secure. Their exhibition game for tonight has been cancelled and the team will return to Clemson as previously scheduled tomorrow morning. Our thoughts are with the people of Barcelona," the South Carolina school said in a statement.

Clemson coach Brad Brownell confirmed in a text to The Associated Press that the three teams were staying in the same hotel.

"We are fine. Thankful to be safe and together," Brownell wrote.

Tulane athletic director Troy Tannen confirmed via social media that the Green Wave players and staff were safe.

Replying to a Twitter inquiry from a Portland television about whether the team was OK, Oregon State head coach Wayne Tinkle responded: "Yes we are, happened directly in front of our hotel while we were having a team meal in the restaurant, so senseless and sad! All accounted4."

Oregon State said it has not yet determined the remaining schedule for the team, which was supposed to be on the exhibition tour until Aug. 25.

A spokesman for Arizona said the Wildcats have canceled their third and final exhibition of their tour and "are currently working on travel plans to return home."

The future of Cal athletics, or lack thereof

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USATSI

The future of Cal athletics, or lack thereof

Your education dollars are always at work, so it is with pride and bewilderment that we report that the University of California’s incoming class (2021, for those few who can get out in four years) marched to Memorial Stadium and formed the world’s largest human letter.
 
It was . . . wait for it . . . a “C.” A 7,196-person-strong “C.”
 
But the school, as it occasionally does, missed a golden opportunity to seize a golden opportunity. All they needed to do was have a quick whip-round, get $55,586.44 from each and every one of the captives . . . er, students, and they could have wiped out their entire athletics deficit in one night.
 
You see, while forming gigantic letters is always fun (or as the kids used to say when double negatives didn’t mean voting, never not fun), Cal is staring at quite possibly the bleakest future a major athletic university ever has. The athletic department, whose chief officer, Mike Williams, has just announced his intention to quit, is over $400 million in debt between construction costs, ambition, shrinking allegiance and the absence of a Phil Knight-level sugar daddy to buy the pain away.
 
And before you blame Williams, he inherited this indigestible planetoid from his predecessor, Sandy Barbour, who grew it from her predecessor, Steve Gladstone, and hastened it from . . . well, you get the drift. 
 
Cal’s been blowing through money it hasn’t been taking in for years upon years, didn’t realize the deficit-cutting benefits of the Pac-12 Network (because they largely don’t exist), and the day of reckoning looms closer and closer, especially now that new chancellor Carol Christ (no apparent relation) described the deficit as “corrosive” and has insisted that the athletic department have a balanced budget by 2020.
 
In short, the school may only be able to afford a lower-case “C” before too long. Maybe in comic sans.