BC-AP Sports Preview Digest

Some of the sports stories The Associated Press is covering Thursday. A full Sports Digest will be sent by about 3 p.m. All times EDT:

- FOXBOROUGH, Mass -The NFL season begins, with the Super Bowl champion New England Patriots and Tom Brady taking on the Kansas City Chiefs. Game starts 8:35 p.m.

- NEW YORK - Venus Williams faces Sloane Stephens, and Madison Keys plays CoCo Vandweghe in the first all-U.S. women's semifinals at the U.S. Open since 1981. Play starts 7 p.m.

- NEW YORK - Rafael Nadal's bid for his second Grand Slam title of 2017 and 16th of his career will need to go through Juan Martin del Potro in the semifinals, not Roger Federer.

- CHICAGO - Researchers are pursuing fresh questions about a degenerative brain disease now that it has been detected in the brains of nearly 200 football players after death.

- LOS ANGELES - The Dodgers have baseball's best record but have lost six in a row and 11 of 12, including six to Arizona, a team that could give them fits in the playoffs.

- CHICAGO - The Cleveland Indians try for a franchise-record 15th straight victory when ace Corey Kluber (14-4) faces the last-place Chicago White Sox. Game starts 8:10 p.m.

- FRISCO, Texas - Dak Prescott, the Cowboys quarterback coming off an outstanding rookie season, ignores the sophomore slump talk. He thinks his best days are ahead.

- CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Julius Peppers is back in Carolina after seven years. The Panthers still think they can get good things out of the 37-year-old Peppers even if he doesn't start.

- College football preview of Friday's lone game involving a Top 25 team: No. 11 Oklahoma State at South Alabama.

- Previews of four key Top 25 games Saturday: Ohio State-Oklahoma; Clemson-Auburn; USC-Stanford; Georgia-Notre Dame.

- SOUTH BEND, Ind. - A former Notre Dame linebacker with permanent neck damage sues the university, contending it concealed results of a spinal scan from him.

- INDEPENDENCE, Ohio - Isaiah Thomas is to discuss his hip injury when introduced by the Cleveland Cavaliers following the blockbuster trade with Boston involving Kyrie Irving.

- SPRINGFIELD, Mass. - Rebecca Lobo, who helped popularize women's basketball at UConn, is enshrined in the Hall of Fame on Friday, not far from where she grew up.

- NEW YORK - WNBA attendance was up for the second straight year. The average crowd was 7,716, the highest total since 2011. Defending champion Los Angeles led the way at 11,350.

- INDIANAPOLIS - Stacy Lewis, last week's winner in Portland, begins play in the inaugural Indy Women in Tech. Also in the field are Lexi Thompson, Cristie Kerr and Brooke Henderson.

- NEW YORK - Every NFL game will be shown live online this season, but there's no guarantee you'll see them. Two old standbys are better bets: cable or satellite TV subscription.

- MADRID, Spain - Ousmane Dembele, the 20-year-old French striker picked by Barcelona to succeed Neymar, is expected to make his debut Saturday against Espanyol.

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