Tuesday's Sports In Brief

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Associated Press

Posted on August 21, 2013 at 4:06 AM

Updated Wednesday, Aug 21 at 7:35 AM

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) — Broncos linebacker Von Miller received a six-game suspension under the NFL's substance-abuse policy Tuesday, taking away the best defensive player from a team many expect to make a run at the Super Bowl.

The league wanted a longer penalty for the third-year linebacker, but the sides agreed to less than half the season, a person familiar with the negotiations between the linebacker and the NFL told The Associated Press.

The person who spoke to the AP did not want to be identified because details about the negotiations were not public.

Broncos executive vice president John Elway said the team was frustrated with what happened "and, I think, disappointed in Von."

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The Buffalo Bills signed Jairus Byrd to a one-year franchise tender Tuesday night — a deal that gives the safety $6.9 million this season under the rules of the franchise tag.

A two-time Pro Bowler, Byrd missed all of the team's offseason workouts and has missed nearly all of training camp. The Bills break camp late Wednesday afternoon.

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Ten former NFL players, including five Hall of Famers, are asking the league and its production arm to pay up.

A group that includes Curley Culp and John Riggins filed a class-action suit in U.S. District Court in New Jersey to reclaim payment for the use of their names, images and likenesses from film footage they say was used on NFL Network and to promote the league without the ex-players consent.

The other Hall of Famers suing are Dave Casper, Tom Mack and Ron Yary.

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Eagles first-year coach Chip Kelly named veteran Michael Vick Philadelphia's starting quarterback.

Vick has been solid in two preseason games, and backup Nick Foles, in his second season with the Eagles, has struggled to grasp Kelly's multifaceted offense. Vick has thrown for 199 yards this preseason and will take a 113.2 quarterback rating into Friday's game at Jacksonville (0-2).

'He's our starter for the season," Kelly said. "It's not a one-game trial basis."

WASHINGTON (AP) — Nearly three dozen members of the 1972 Miami Dolphins finally received their White House moment 40 years after they made history by winning 17 games and losing none — an undefeated NFL feat that still stands today.

President Barack Obama welcomed the former players to the East Room, a periodic occurrence at the White House these days for current sports champions.

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BASEBALL

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Boston's Ryan Dempster was suspended for five games and fined by Major League Baseball for intentionally hitting Yankees star Alex Rodriguez with a pitch last weekend.

The penalty was announced by MLB senior vice president Joe Garagiola Jr. two days after Dempster hit A-Rod in the second inning at Fenway Park. Yankees manager Joe Girardi was fined for arguing with plate umpire Brian O'Nora.

Dempster's fine was $2,500 and Girardi's was $5,000, people familiar with the discipline told The Associated Press. They spoke on condition of anonymity because the amounts were not announced.

Dempster won't appeal the decision.

DETROIT (AP) — Tigers star Miguel Cabrera has another injury to deal with as he attempts to become the first to win baseball's Triple Crown in consecutive seasons.

Cabrera might have aggravated a previous ailment, or he may have a new one.

Manager Jim Leyland says Cabrera was in pain after his first swing in the ninth inning against Minnesota. Cabrera struck out swinging with two on, closing out a 6-3 victory for the Twins.

Leyland wasn't sure if the injury was in Cabrera's groin or stomach area. Cabrera has been playing through a strained lower abdomen, injured hip and banged-up left leg.

CLEVELAND (AP) — The Indians released right-hander Daisuke Matsuzaka at his request, giving the Japanese veteran a chance to catch on with another team after failing to secure a spot in Cleveland's rotation.

Matsuzaka has spent the entire season at Triple-A Columbus after failing to win a spot in Cleveland's rotation during spring training.

ALLENTOWN, Pa. (AP) — The Philadelphia Phillies' top farm club offered a free funeral to an eastern Pennsylvania fan recently diagnosed with ALS.

The Lehigh Valley IronPigs announced the winner of its funeral giveaway during a home game at Coca-Cola Park.

Steve Paul, 64, of Freemansburg got a standing ovation as he was wheeled onto the field and announced as the recipient of a funeral package valued at nearly $10,000.

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LEGAL

DUNCAN, Okla. (AP) — With a motive that's both chilling and simple — to break up the boredom of an Oklahoma summer — three teenagers randomly targeted an Australian collegiate baseball player who was attending school in the U.S. and killed him for fun, prosecutors said as they charged two of the boys with murder.

Prosecutor Jason Hicks called the boys "thugs" as he described how Christopher Lane, 22, of Melbourne, was shot once in the back and died along a tree-lined road on Duncan's well-to-do north side. He said the three teens, from the grittier part of town, chose Lane at random and that one of the boys "thinks it's all a joke."

Hicks charged Chancey Allen Luna, 16, and James Francis Edwards Jr., 15, of Duncan, with first-degree murder. Under Oklahoma law they will be tried as adults. Michael Dewayne Jones, 17, of Duncan, was charged with using a vehicle in the discharge of a weapon and with accessory to first-degree murder after the fact. He is considered a youthful offender but will be tried in adult court.

JOHANNESBURG (AP) — The families of Oscar Pistorius and his slain girlfriend are in contact, a lawyer for Reeva Steenkamp's parents said.

The communication between the two families is over a possible out-of-court settlement that would compensate the Steenkamps for the killing of their daughter by the double-amputee Olympian, according to South African press reports.

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COLLEGE FOOTBALL

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) — Alabama coach Nick Saban suspended cornerback Geno Smith for the season opener with Virginia Tech after a weekend drunken driving arrest.

Smith, a projected starter at nickel back, was arrested Sunday morning and charged with DUI. The sophomore was at practice Tuesday for the top-ranked Crimson Tide, and Saban said Smith has some "in-house" things to do in order to return in time for the Sept. 14 game against Texas A&M.

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Former Ohio State coach Jim Tressel is teaching a fall semester course at the University of Akron.

Tressel, who has an administrative position at the school, will teach "General Principles of Coaching" this fall with former Zips coach Jim Dennison. The three-credit course will be open to Akron students and the general public. Dennison was Akron's coach when Tressel was hired as an assistant in 1974.

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TENNIS

NEW YORK (AP) — Serena Williams will be seeded No. 1 at the U.S. Open as she tries to do something she's never done: win a second consecutive title at Flushing Meadows.

Williams is a four-time champion at the U.S. Open, including in 2012. Only Chris Evert, with six, and Steffi Graf, with five, have won the tournament more times in the Open era, which began in 1968.

The U.S. Tennis Association stuck to the WTA rankings in announcing the 32 seeded women, including Victoria Azarenka at No. 2, and Maria Sharapova at No. 3. Williams is one of three seeded Americans; No. 16 Sloane Stephens and No. 24 Jamie Hampton are the others.

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SOCCER

SAO PAULO (AP) — It was a frenzied start to FIFA's attempt to fill the stands for next year's World Cup in Brazil as fans applied for more than 1 million tickets in just seven hours.

But it will be some time before they know whether they'll be among those lucky enough to get seats to football's signature event. Applicants won't hear back until October, after FIFA holds a random selection draw on all the requests.

More than 163,000 people requested the tickets online in the first seven hours.

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