Daily Local News (West Chester, PA)
49ers hire Steve Wilks as defensive coordinator
The San Francisco 49ers are hiring former Carolina interim head coach Steve Wilks as their new defensive coordinator.
A person familiar with the choice said Tuesday that Wilks will fill the void created when DeMeco Ryans was hired as head coach in Houston. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the hiring hadn’t been announced.
NFL Network first reported that Wilks got the job.
SUPER BOWL BETTING PROJECTED TO REACH $16 BILLION THIS YEAR >>
A record 50.4 million American adults plan to bet on this year’s Super Bowl, wagering a total of $16 billion, the gambling industry’s national trade group predicted Tuesday.
The American Gaming Association forecasts that 1 in 5 American adults will place a bet on Sunday’s NFL championship game between the Philadelphia Eagles and the Kansas City Chiefs.
The estimate includes legal bets, and those placed with illegal bookies or casually among friends or relatives.
TITANS PROMOTE KELLY TO COORDINATOR, HIRE FIRST FEMALE COACH >>
Tennessee Titans coach Mike Vrabel has shaken up his coaching staff and announced Tuesday that he promoted Tim Kelly to offensive coordinator from passing game coordinator.
Vrabel also announced several new hirings and changes to his existing staff.
The Titans added Charles London from Atlanta to replace Kelly, hired last year as the passing game coordinator, as the new pass game coordinator and quarterbacks coach; Chris Harris is the new defensive passing game coordinator and cornerbacks coach.
Vrabel also has hired the franchise’s first fulltime female coaching assistant, adding Lori Locust as defensive quality control coach from Tampa Bay along with Justin Hamilton in the same position.
Baseball CLEVELAND GUARDIANS HIRE FEMALE MINOR LEAGUE HITTING COACH >>
Amanda Kamekona, a former star softball player at UCLA, has been hired as a minor league hitting instructor for the Cleveland Guardians. She’s the first female on-field coach in team history.
Kamekona will be based at the team’s yearround complex in Goodyear, Arizona, where she’ll work with the team’s developmental players. The Guardians have an Arizona Rookie League team.
The 36-year-old’s hiring continues a trend throughout Major League Baseball of teams adding female coaches to their staffs. The Guardians have had women coach mental skills, but have never previously had a female instructor working with players on the field.
College football AP SOURCES: MIAMI IS HIRING LANCE GUIDRY FROM TULANE AS DC >>
Miami is hiring Lance Guidry, who was defensive coordinator at Marshall last season and recently accepted
the same position at Tulane, to lead its defense, two people with knowledge of the decision told The Associated Press on Tuesday.
The people spoke on condition of anonymity because a deal was still being finalized between Guidry and Miami.
ESPN first reported Miami was expected to hire Guidry as its defensive coordinator.
Fighting UFC TO EXPAND INTO MEXICO WITH NEW TRAINING FACILITY >>
The UFC will open a multimillion-dollar, 32,000-square-foot MMA training facility in Mexico City late this year, the organization announced Tuesday morning.
“Some of the greatest athletes in combat sports history have come from Mexico,” UFC President Dana White said in a statement. “Our teams at the (Las Vegas Performance Institute) are the best in the world at what they do, and we know that by making the resources and training available in the country, Mexico can become one of the greatest sources of MMA talent in the world. This is a massive opportunity for the sport of MMA and for athletes throughout Latin America.”
NBA HEAT TRADING DEDMON, 2ND-ROUND PICK TO SPURS >>
The San Antonio Spurs are acquiring center Dewayne Dedmon from the Miami Heat, a person with knowledge of the move told The Associated Press on Tuesday.
The Spurs also are getting a second-round draft pick while the Heat will receive cash considerations, according to the person who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the deal has not been finalized.
The move, once completed, opens some financial flexibility and a roster spot for the Heat.
HEAT SAY LOWRY OUT AT LEAST THREE GAMES WITH KNEE ISSUE >>
Kyle Lowry has been ruled out for the Miami Heat’s next three games with a left knee issue, and he could be sidelined even longer.
Lowry is averaging 12.0 points and 5.3 assists on 39.6% shooting this season, numbers all down from a year ago when Miami went into the Eastern Conference playoffs as the No. 1 seed. He will miss games against Indiana on
Wednesday, versus Houston on Friday and at Orlando on Saturday.
NHL SABRES AGREE WITH COZENS ON $49.7M, 7-YEAR EXTENSION >>
The Buffalo Sabres have agreed to terms with forward Dylan Cozens on a seven-year extension worth $49.7 million.
The team announced the contract Tuesday. Cozens will count $7.1 million against the salary cap through the 2029-30 season.
Cozens, who turns 22 Thursday, is the latest core player the Sabres have extended over the past six months. Buffalo signed All-Star forward Tage Thompson for $50 million over seven seasons in August and defenseman Mattias Samuelsson to a $30 million, sevenyear deal in October.
WALSH TO LEAVE BIDEN CABINET FOR NHL UNION >>
U.S. Labor Secretary Marty Walsh is expected to leave the Biden administration to run the National Hockey League Players’ Association, according to two people familiar with his plans.
The hockey players’ union has been searching for a new executive director to take over for Don Fehr. An association spokesperson had no official update on the situation when reached Tuesday.
A serious fan of the Boston Bruins, Walsh showed an encyclopedic knowledge of the sport in videos posted online during his tenure from 2014 to 2021 as mayor of Boston.
Skiing SHIFFRIN RULES OUT RACING DOWNHILL >>
Mikaela Shiffrin has ruled out skiing the downhill at the world championships — keeping to her pre-announced schedule of four events.
Shiffrin inspected the course before the opening downhill training session Tuesday just to take a look at the layout ahead of Wednesday’s super-G race. But she did not enter the training session.
Then she performed a few runs of super-G training.
UKRAINIAN SKIER PUSHES TO KEEP RUSSIANS OUT OF THE OLYMPICS >>
Ukrainian skier Ivan Kovbasnyuk, a two-time Olympian, can’t train at home in the Carpathian Mountains because war in the country has damaged the power grid so severely that there’s not enough energy to make the chairlifts
That’s just one of the reasons why he thinks athletes from Russia and Belarus shouldn’t be allowed to compete at the next Olympics — or in any international sports events.
“It’s not fair when Ukrainian sportsmen don’t have a chance to participate in the Olympics because they are dying on the battlefields while Russian athletes are just silently supporting (Vladimir) Putin’s crime regime,” Kovbasnyuk said after competing in the combined race at the Alpine skiing world championships on Tuesday.
Auto racing DALY TO ENTER DAYTONA 500 WITH FLOYD MAYWEATHER’S TEAM >>
IndyCar driver Conor Daly will attempt to qualify for the Daytona 500 with the NASCAR team owned by Floyd Mayweather.
The Money Team Racing raced its way into the Daytona 500 last year with driver Kaz Grala; Daly made his Cup Series debut for the team in October on The Roval at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
“The Money Team Racing shocked the world by making the Daytona 500 last year and I believe in this team and know we will prepare a great car for this year’s race,” Mayweather said Tuesday. “Like a fighter who’s always ready to face the best, Conor has the courage to buckle into this beast without any practice and put that car into the field.
“Conor is like a hungry fighter and my kind of guy. I sure wouldn’t bet against him.”
JESSICA PEGULA REVEALS HER MOTHER KIM PEGULA’S HEALTH CRISIS >> Pro tennis player Jessica Pegula has revealed that her mother, Buffalo Bills and Buffalo Sabres co-owner and president Kim Pegula, went into cardiac arrest in June and is still recovering while dealing with significant language and memory issues.
In an essay that The Players’ Tribune published Tuesday, Jessica Pegula detailed for the first time the medical crisis that abruptly removed her mother from the public eye and suggested that her mother may not resume the same level of involvement in the family’s sports franchises.