Racing

Wednesday's Sports In Brief

OLYMPICS

MOSCOW (AP) Russia's top Olympic official says he expects a final decision by Sunday on whether the entire Russian team will be banned from next month's games in Rio.

The International Olympic Committee is examining the legal options following a report by World Anti-Doping Agency investigator Richard McLaren that accused Russia's sports ministry of overseeing doping of the country's Olympic athletes.

Russian Olympic Committee president Alexander Zhukov says ''the issue will be finally resolved by the end of this week, probably on Sunday.''

The Court of Arbitration for Sport will issue its verdict Thursday on Russia's appeal to overturn the IAAF ban on its track and field athletes for the games. The IOC will take that into account before making its own decision.

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) - The World Anti-Doping Agency said it has reinstated the laboratory that will carry out drug testing for the Rio de Janeiro Olympics, which start in just over two weeks.

The lab was shuttered last month for what WADA called ''nonconformity with International Standard for Laboratories.''

In a statement, WADA says the Rio laboratory ''has successfully complied with the ISL's requirements for reinstatement and no further suspension is required.''

The statement will be a relief for local organizers and the International Olympic Committee, which would have been forced to send thousands of samples abroad for testing.

The Rio Olympics have faced myriad problems: the Zika epidemic, soaring crime and security worries, slow ticket sales and severe water pollution in venues for sailing, rowing, canoeing, triathlon and distance swimming.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL

PRINCETON, N.J. (AP) - The Ivy League will use an experimental rule this season to move kickoffs to the 40-yard line and touchbacks to the 20-yard line in an effort to reduce concussions and further promote the safety and welfare of its student-athletes.

The goal of the experimental rule is to limit kickoff returns, which account for 23.4 percent of concussions during games despite representing only 5.8 percent of overall plays. The Ivy League will evaluate the concussion and kickoff return data after the season.

The request was made to the NCAA as a part of The Ivy League's overall review of concussions, which began with football in 2010 and has included eight other sports to date (men's and women's lacrosse, men's and women's ice hockey, men's and women's soccer, wrestling, rugby).

It will only be used in conference games.

AUTO RACING

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - Dale Earnhardt Jr. will not race again this month because of concussion-like symptoms and the No. 88 car will be turned over to trusted former teammate Jeff Gordon for the next two weeks.

Hendrick Motorsports announced that Earnhardt has not yet been cleared to drive by doctors and will miss Sunday's Brickyard 400 as well as next weekend's race at Pocono. NASCAR's most popular driver has been battling balance issues and nausea since a July 2 crash at Daytona.

Earnhardt pulled himself out of the car last weekend in New Hampshire and was replaced by Alex Bowman. After another medical evaluation Tuesday in Pittsburgh, doctors told Earnhardt to take more time off.

Team owner Rick Hendrick says the team is looking forward to having NASCAR's most popular driver back racing ''soon.''

Gordon is the only five-time winner of the Brickyard 400 and race organizers billed the 2015 race as his ''last ride'' in Indy. Since retiring at the end of last season, he served primarily as a commentator for Fox Sports.

SOCCER

LONDON (AP) - Russia's hosting of the World Cup is becoming increasingly problematic for FIFA's leaders after the International Olympic Committee withdrew support for sporting events being staged in the doping-tainted nation.

The IOC's move followed this week's second damning World Anti-Doping Agency report, which accused Russia of state-sponsored doping.

The scandal landed at FIFA's door after Russian soccer was for the first time implicated in the alleged doping cover-up by a country that has been entrusted with soccer's most prestigious event in 2018.

Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko, whose department is accused of orchestrating the deception, is also head of the country's soccer federation and is a member of FIFA's ruling council.

Soccer's governing body is standing by the 2018 hosts - just as it has done throughout six years of scrutiny since the contentious vote to hand the World Cup to Russia for the first time.

HOCKEY

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - A chancellor will rule within the week on whether a co-owner of the Nashville Predators can keep his lawsuit against the team's ownership group in a Tennessee court or have to submit to arbitration.

Chancellor Ellen Hobbs Lyle heard nearly three hours of arguments on a motion that would force David Freeman out of her court and back into arbitration with NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman.

Freeman, a former team chairman, sued Predators Holdings LLC and current team chairman Tom Cigarran on June 23 and is seeking $250 million in damages for his original 48 percent stake in the team being diluted.

The lawsuit states that Freeman, through Commodore Trust, organized the Holdings investment group in 2007 to keep the Predators in Nashville. But it charges that some Holdings members ''have conspired to repay his dedication to the team and community by claiming that Commodore owns less than one percent of Holdings.''

COLLEGE BASKETBALL

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - The NCAA has donated $50,000 to the Pat Summitt Foundation in memory of the late Tennessee coach.

The money will go toward the Summitt Foundation's goal of raising $2.5 million for the Pat Summitt Alzheimer's Clinic at the University of Tennessee Medical Center, which is scheduled to open in December.

Foundation director Patrick Wade thanked the NCAA for its support in the fight against Alzheimer's. The NCAA's donation and money donated since Summitt died June 28 will be used for research, treatment and support of Alzheimer's patients and families in Tennessee.

Summitt was the winningest Division I college basketball coach with 1,098 wins over 38 seasons. She announced in August 2011 that she had been diagnosed with early onset dementia, Alzheimer's type.

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