UNDATED (AP) — This is going to be a cold day for NFL fans and players in Cincinnati and Green Bay. The one saving grace may be that neither game is being played this evening, although the Packers-Niners game is a late-afternoon start.
First up in Cincinnati, the Bengals are playing host to the Chargers in the AFC game of the day. Just a month ago the Bengals edged the Chargers 17-10 in the warmth of San Diego. Today's game is being played on the cold shores of the Ohio River. After that loss at home the Chargers ended the season with four straight wins.
Today's game marks the third straight season the Bengals have reached the postseason, a team record.
The only other time these clubs have met in postseason play was the so-called "Freezer Bowl" in the 1981 AFC Championship game, when the Bengals won 27-7. The wind-chill temperature for that game fell to minus-59.
It's probably going to be even colder in Green Bay today for the Packers-Niners game. The forecast calls for a high of about minus-2. The coldest NFL game on record is the 1967 championship game at Lambeau Field, when the Packers beat the Cowboys 21-17 in what has come to be known as the "Ice Bowl." During that game, the temperature plunged to minus-13 with a wind chill of minus-46.
These two teams met way back at the start of the season when the 49ers beat the Packers 34-38 on Sept. 8. They met in last year's playoffs, a 45-31 win for the Niners.
This year San Francisco racked up a record of 12-4 while the Packers earned their spot in the postseason with a 33-28 win over the Bears in Chicago to win the NFC North.
BOWL GAME-GO DADDY
Mobile, Ala. (AP) — It's going to be cold for this evening's GoDaddy.com bowl game in Mobile, Ala., as the temperature for the game may dip to the upper 20s.
This year's matchup has Arkansas State, which is looking for a second straight GoDaddy championship, playing the Ball State Cardinals. In fact this marks the third straight year Arkansas State has been in the GoDaddy game.
Ball State is led by quarterback Keith Wenning, who tossed for just under 4,000 yards and 34 touchdowns. The 10-4 Cardinals are enjoying just the third 10-win season in their history. Arkansas State is 7-5.
Nine ranked teams in action today
UNDATED (AP) — There are three Top-25 matchups in men's basketball today featuring two ranked schools. Wisconsin is the highest-ranked school in action. The fourth-ranked Badgers are home to 22nd-ranked Iowa. Tenth-ranked Oregon may have its hands full playing at No. 20 Colorado while 16th-ranked Kansas is home to No. 21 San Diego State.
In other games today eighth-ranked Wichita State is home to Northern Iowa, No. 11 Villanova is entertaining Providence and 19th-ranked North Carolina is at Wake Forest.
Pacers and Thunder look for win No. 27
UNDATED (AP) — Four teams in the NBA have 26 wins this season and tonight two of them are in action.
Indiana tops the Central Division and the Eastern Conference with a record of 26-6 and this evening the Pacers are in Cleveland against the Cavaliers.
The remaining 26-win teams are from the Western Conference and tonight in Oklahoma City the 26-7 Thunder are home to the Boston Celtics.
There's one game being played this afternoon as Detroit is home to Memphis.
The rest of the schedule is tonight with Toronto at Miami, Golden State at Washington, the Knicks in Dallas, Denver in L.A. against the Lakers and the Raptors at Miami. Toronto tops the Atlantic Division with the paltry record of 16 wins and 15 defeats while the Heat lead the Southwest at 25-8.
Conference leaders look to pad their leads
UNDATED (AP) — The Eastern Conference-leading Pittsburgh Penguins can pad their lead this afternoon with a win at home against Winnipeg. That is the lone day game on the NHL schedule.
This evening the league-leading Chicago Blackhawks are home to San Jose. The Blackhawks top the NHL and the Central Division with 66 points while the Sharks reside in second place in the Pacific Division with 58 points, seven behind first-place Anaheim. The Ducks are home this evening to Vancouver.
In the final game of the night, Tampa Bay is at Edmonton.
PGA-TOURNAMENT OF CHAMPIONS
Zach Johnson surges to lead
KAPALUA, Hawaii (AP) — Zach Johnson is the leader at the midway point of the Tournament of Champions in Hawaii. Johnson fired a 7-under-par 66 yesterday for a 13-under total, good for a three-shot lead entering today's third round.
Defending champion Dustin Johnson, Matt Kuchar (KOO'-chur) and Jordan Spieth (speeth) are three shots back at minus-10.