It's the end of the World Cup as we know it: The FIFA Council made it official, unanimously approving an expansion of the menís World Cup field. Starting in 2026, the field will increase from 32 to 48 teams. There will be 16 groups of 3 teams, with the top two finishers in each group advancing to a 32-team knockout stage.
Michael Phelps and Katie Ledecky in the Same Relay? It Could Happen.: What if there were one last event, a mixed-gender medley that teamed the nationís winningest women with its most-medalled men.
Lionel Messi retires from Argentina after Copa America final loss to Chile: Asked if he were retiring, the 29-year old said, "I tried my hardest. It's been four finals, and I was not able to win. I tried everything possible. It hurts me more than anyone, but it is evident that this is not for me. I want more than anyone to win a title with the national team, but unfortunately, it did not happen." The news comes off the back of Messi's criticising the Argentine football federation (AFA) ahead of the final and revealing in a news conference on Friday that he had a backlog of complaints with the AFA.
Fifa scandal: Jack Warner banned for life by FIFA: More than four years after quitting football, the governing bodyís ethics committee today announced the outcome of an investigation into Sepp Blatterís disgraced former vice-president, who is also facing criminal charges in the United States over an alleged £100 million fraud. Warnerís ban begins at the same time as Fifaís ethics committee examines evidence that could lead to the suspension of Blatter and Michel Platini over a £1.3m suspected criminal payment to the Uefa president.
Brady Hoke's Dangerous Incompetence So Bad ESPN Announcers Denounce It: Michigan quarterback Shane Morris took a nasty, and illegal, hit to the skull in the fourth quarter of last night's loss to Minnesota. Not only was Morris immediately re-inserted into the game, but Wolverines head coach Brady Hoke claimed " I didn't know if [Morris] had a concussion or not." Over-the-top deadspin headline aside, there is a growing demand to relieve Coach Hoke of his duties in Ann Arbor that isn't even based on the team's 2-3 start to the season. The university released a statement last night defending the team's handling of the situation, though not referencing the suspected head injury.
Alex Rodriguez attorney accuses Yankees of hiding MRI results: Joseph Tacopina, the attorney representing Rodriguez in his appeal of a 211-game suspension for his involvement with Miami-based Biogenesis and performance enhancing drugs, said the Yankees hid MRI results from Rodriguez that showed a torn labrum in his hip in October 2012, an injury that would eventually require offseason surgery and sideline the third baseman for the first four months of the 2103 campaign. Rodriguez hit just .120 (3-for-25) during the 2012 playoffs for the Yankees, who lost the ALCS to the Tigers.
Sochi Athletes Subject to Anti-Gay Law: Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko warned Thursday that athletes and visitors to the Sochi Olympics will be subject to the country's laws against promoting homosexuality, contradicting a statement from the International Olympic Committee that the government had promised they would be exempt.
Mark Cuban Working on His Own College Football Playoff: Mark Cuban wants to create a playoff for Division I-A college football, and he's willing to offer schools millions of dollars to make it happen. Heís formed a limited liability company called Radical Football.
Big Ten Conference Reveals New Logo and Honors Football History with Division Names and Trophies: The Big Ten Conference today made several announcements that complete a series of decisions prompted by the upcoming addition of the University of Nebraska - Lincoln as the conference's 12th member school. The conference revealed a new logo to be used for all sports beginning with the 2011-12 academic year and also unveiled names for its two football divisions and a list of names for 18 trophies to honor coaches, teams and student-athletes starting with the 2011 football season. The LEGENDS Division will include Iowa, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Nebraska, and Northwestern, and the LEADERS Division will include Illinois, Indiana, Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue, and Wisconsin.
Why CONCACAF Is Killing the Best Rivalry in North America: They're killing the most important rivalry in American soccer. That's [Grant Wahl's] unavoidable conclusion after speaking to Chuck Blazer, the general secretary of CONCACAF, who confirmed that he expects FIFA to approve a new regional qualifying format for World Cup 2014.
2011 NCAA Men's Basketball Championship: to begin with four first-round games as entire tournament to be nationally broadcast across four networks for first time. The Division I Men's Basketball Committee today announced plans for the 2011 NCAA "First Four" to showcase the expanded field for the NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Championship.
League announces 2000s NFL All-Decade Team: This decade's 53-player team is comprised of two quarterbacks, four running backs, one fullback, four wide receivers, two tight ends, four offensive tackles, four guards, two centers, four defensive tackles, four defensive ends, six linebackers, four cornerbacks, four safeties, two kickers, two punters, two kick returners and two punt returners. Current New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick and retired Colts coach Tony Dungy also were chosen for the team.