By Bob Knight, Dean Smith's Division I record of 879 career wins. Knight got No. 880 on Monday with Texas Tech's 70--68 win over New Mexico. The Red Raiders led by 13 at the half and withstood a furious Lobos rally in the second half. After the final buzzer, Knight (above) was given a half-hug by his son Pat, an assistant at Tech and, as he received cheers from the crowd, he tapped the chin of player Michael Prince, a playful re-creation of a November incident in which Knight was criticized for putting his hand to the sophomore's chin during a game. Knight then showed his softer side, calling his wife, Karen, from her seat to stand beside him as he addressed the crowd. "The first 15 minutes was Karen's game plan," he joked. "The rest was mine, unfortunately."
On charges of DUI and possession of cocaine, Mike Tyson, 40. The former heavyweight champ was stopped outside a Scottsdale, Ariz., nightclub at 1:45 a.m. last Friday after his BMW 745i nearly struck a sheriff's vehicle. After Tyson failed a field sobriety test, police searched his car and found the drugs. He was released later in the day and has a preliminary hearing on Jan. 16.
For violating a child custody order, Myriam Bedard, 37, who won two biathlon gold medals for Canada at the 1994 Olympics. Bedard was picked up by U.S. marshals on Dec. 22 in Maryland for taking her 12-year-old daughter out of the country without the permission of the girl's father. If convicted, Bedard faces up to 10 years in prison.
By the North Carolina bar with unethical conduct in his handling of the Duke lacrosse sexual assault case, district attorney Mike Nifong. He is accused of making misleading and inflammatory statements to the media about accused players. The bar cited nearly 50 statements Nifong made that it said constitute "improper commentary about the character, credibility and reputation of the accused." Nifong will face a bar hearing—no date has been set—and penalties range from censure to disbarment. Nifong did not say if he would recuse himself from the Duke case, which is not expected to go to trial until the spring. His only comment to reporters outside his office was, "I'm not really into the irony of talking to reporters about allegations that I talked to reporters."
January 8, 2007
At age 45 of injuries suffered in a house fire, former All Star third baseman Chris Brown. On Nov. 30, Brown (above) was pulled from a burning unoccupied house he owned in Sugar Land, Texas. Authorities considered the fire suspicious, but they were never able to speak to Brown because of his injuries. In six seasons Brown hit. 269. He made the National League All Star team in 1986, when he hit. 317 for the Giants. But a string of injuries (including one incurred when, his then manager said, Brown "slept on his eye wrong") hampered his production. Brown retired in '89 and recently worked in Iraq, where he drove a truck for Halliburton.
Below the elbow, the right arm of champion logroller J.R. Salzman. Salzman, 25, who won five logrolling titles at the Lumberjack World Championships from 1998 to 2002, was injured by an improvised explosive device (IED) while on duty with the Army Reserve in Iraq. On Dec. 21, Salzman wrote on his website, "My left [arm] has four working fingers. My legs are fine so I can still logroll!" (In October, the 2005 ESPY winner for Best Outdoor Sports Athlete wrote that "you're more likely to hit a sheep than an IED" in the area he was in.) Salzman added, "[I am] in high spirits... but I will have a long road to recovery."
By an Albuquerque jury of misdemeanor charges of resisting and disobeying police, Al Unser Sr. The 67-year-old, one of only three men to win the Indianapolis 500 four times, was arrested in August after police blocked off a road near his home—ironically, the road was named after the Unser family—in an attempt to apprehend a suspect who had led cops on a high-speed chase. According to Bernalillo County sheriff's deputies, Unser would not leave a cordoned-off area when asked by police. Unser's brother Bobby, 62, who won Indy three times, was also arrested for refusing to leave. According to Al Unser's attorney Charlie Daniels, his client objected to "the abusive way he was being treated by police." Bobby Unser's trial begins on Jan. 31.
For 10 years for cheating by the All India Chess Federation, Umakant Sharma. The 20-year-old, who played in a wool cap pulled down over his ears, shocked observers with his recent improved play. Last month at a tournament in Delhi, officials found a Bluetooth device knitted into his cap; they believe Sharma was using it to get tips from outside the chess hall. Of the ban, AICF secretary D.V. Sundar said that "we wanted to send a message to such people."
For $1.9 million, the world's oldest hockey stick. Gord Sharpe, 45, got the hand-carved hickory stick, which was made between 1852 and '56, as a gift from his great-uncle when he was nine. Sharpe received 26 bids for the stick (left) in an online auction; the winning one came from an anonymous Canadian buyer. The stick had been on display at Wayne Gretzky's restaurant in Toronto, but the buyer has agreed to display it at the Hockey Hall of Fame. The entire $1.9 million will go to fanscharity.com, a site Sharpe runs to teach kids about the importance of philanthropy.
At age 73 of heart failure, James Brown. Before he was the Godfather of Soul, Brown was an aspiring boxer and a lefthanded pitcher blessed with what his 1986 autobiography called "a good fastball, a sharp curve and a wicked floater." A leg injury shifted his focus to show business, but sports influenced his career. Brown said he incorporated some of his boxing footwork into his act, and in '05 he explained to NPR his inspiration (below) for his trademark splits: "Those years, Jackie Robinson... came into major league baseball and he was doing the split on first base."
31.2 Turnovers per game in the NBA through Sunday, the last day the league used the new synthetic ball that was introduced this season.
28.8 Turnovers per game last season when the NBA used its leather ball, which was reinstated on Monday.
12 NBA coaches who have won 800 games; George Karl joined the club when the Nuggets beat the SuperSonics last Thursday.
20 Consecutive years that Vinny Testaverde has thrown a touchdown pass; the Patriots' QB, 43, extended his NFL record with a six-yarder against the Titans on Sunday.
416 Carries by Chiefs running back Larry Johnson this season, an NFL record.
A 'Sickening' Loss
On the night his second season ended, Broncos CB Darrent Williams is shot dead
EARLY MONDAY MORNING, a few hours after the 49ers knocked them from playoff contention, a bad weekend for the Broncos turned tragic. Following what police said was a confrontation at a nightclub during a New Year's Eve party, 24-year-old cornerback Darrent Williams was shot and killed in a drive-by shooting as he sat in a white Hummer limousine in Denver. Two other people in the car with Williams were injured. According to police Williams was not involved in the incident that led to the shooting. "Why this happened, we're not sure," police spokesman Sonny Jackson said. "There was some confrontation between a group of people in the vehicle and a group at the nightclub."
After playing part time as a rookie, Williams, a Fort Worth native, started all 16 games this season, finishing second on the team with four interceptions. He returned two punts for 50 yards and had three tackles in Sunday's overtime loss to San Francisco. The Broncos were supposed to have Monday off before their final meeting on Tuesday, but about two dozen players showed up at headquarters when they heard the news about Williams. "He had a big heart and a lot of courage," assistant strength and conditioning coach Cedric Smith said. "It's a tragedy, a complete tragedy. It's sickening."
Woman's Best Friend
Thanks to her faithful dog, an adventure racer survives a frigid 52-hour ordeal
AROUND NOON on Dec. 13 pro adventure racer Danelle Ballengee and her dog, Taz, went for a casual eight-mile trail run outside Moab, Utah. After an hour Ballengee slipped on an icy patch and fell 60 feet down several rock faces. With Taz, a 3 year-old mutt, by her side she crawled for a quarter mile before the pain forced her to stop. Says Ballengee, 35, "I kept telling him, 'Taz, I'm hurting. Maybe you can find someone to help me.'"
The first night, with the temperatures dipping into the 20s, Taz curled up on Ballengee's stomach. The next day the dog began leaving for long stretches. On the third day a member of a rescue party spotted Taz barking frantically and followed him down a trail for five miles into a remote canyon. Ballengee broke into tears when she heard the rescuer's ATV approach. "I wasn't ready to die," she said. "I was thinking of having to face a third night. I was starting to get depressed." A week after her rescue Taz and Ballengee—who is expected to recover fully from a shattered pelvis, internal bleeding and frostbite—were reunited at a Denver hospital. There the four-time winner of the Pikes Peak Marathon gave her pooch a well-deserved scratch behind the ears.