Monday Sports in Brief

December 22, 2020 GMT

NFL

NEW YORK (AP) — Led by their star quarterbacks, the Seattle Seahawks, Kansas City Chiefs and Green Bay Packers each had seven players selected to the Pro Bowl.

The Baltimore Ravens also had seven players chosen.

Kansas City’s Patrick Mahomes joins Buffalo’s Josh Allen and Houston’s Deshaun Watson as the AFC quarterbacks. For the NFC, it’s Green Bay’s Aaron Rodgers, Seattle’s Russell Wilson and Arizona’s Kyler Murray.

Mahomes and Rodgers are the starters, though there will be no actual game this season because of the COVID-19 pandemic. On Jan. 31, the players will be celebrated during two Pro Bowl-themed shows airing on an ESPN/ABC simulcast, with a virtual Pro Bowl experience within the Madden NFL 21 video game.

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — The Carolina Panthers fired general manager Marty Hurney on Monday after the team lost eight of its last nine games and failed to make the playoffs for a third straight season.

Hurney’s contract was set to expire after the season.

That had been Hurney’s second stint with the Panthers. He served as the general manager from 2002-12 and again from 2017-20.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL

LSU defensive coordinator Bo Pelini is leaving the program after one difficult season in which the Tigers allowed six opponents to gain more than 500 yards..

In a statement released by LSU on Monday, Pelini said he and head coach Ed Orgeron “mutually decided it’s best” to part ways.

Pelini signed a four-year contract with LSU worth more than $9 million. He would still be owed nearly $7 million under the terms of his deal, but LSU said Pelini agreed to leave with a one-time payment that had not yet been disclosed.

Pelini was in his second stint as defensive coordinator at LSU, having served in the same capacity under Les Miles when the Tigers won a national title in the 2007 season.

LUBBOCK, Texas (AP) — Former Texas Tech quarterback and assistant coach Sonny Cumbie is returning to the Red Raiders as their new offensive coordinator after seven seasons at Big 12 rival TCU.

Cumbie’s hiring was announced by second-year Tech coach Matt Wells on Monday night, a week after offensive coordinator David Yost was fired following a 4-6 season.

Before going to TCU as co-offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach in 2014, Cumbie had been a full-time coach for the Red Raiders for four seasons, as inside receivers coach from 2010-12 before serving as co-OC and outside receivers coach in 2013.

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — Army went from left out of the bowls to replacing Tennessee in the Liberty Bowl on Monday night, hours after the Volunteers withdrew because of COVID-19 test results.

The Black Knights, who had been committed to the Independence Bowl since October before the game was called off, will now play West Virginia in Memphis, Tennessee, on Dec. 31.

The Black Knights (9-2) were left without a bowl Sunday night when the Independence Bowl, scheduled for Dec. 26 in Louisiana, was called off without an available opponent.

MLB

WASHINGTON (AP) — Howie Kendrick is retiring after 15 major league seasons that included earning NLCS MVP honors during the Washington Nationals’ 2019 World Series run.

Kendrick announced his retirement Monday night on Instagram, saying he’s “forever grateful for the many life lessons” learned over 32 years in baseball since beginning to play at age 5.

The Nationals decided in October not to pick up their side of Kendrick’s $6.5 million mutual option for next season, but general manager Mike Rizzo recently said the 37-year-old utility player would be welcomed back.

Kendrick played 1,621 regular-season and 50 playoff games with the Nationals, Dodgers, Angels and Phillies since making his debut in 2006. He drove in four runs and hit .333 during the NLCS when he was named MVP.

COLLEGE BASKETBALL

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — Penny Hardaway has agreed to a five-year extension worth $12.2 million with Memphis, keeping the third-year coach under contract through April 2026.

Memphis announced the extension Monday.

Hardaway is 48-27 (.640) overall with Tigers. He had the No. 1 recruiting class in the nation in 2019.

SOCCER

SANDY, Utah (AP) — Nine-time All-Star midfielder Kyle Beckerman retired Monday after 21 seasons in MLS, the last 14 with Real Salt Lake.

The 38-year-old Beckerman retires as the MLS’s all-time leader in regular-eason matches played (498), matches started (461) and minutes played (41,161). Beckerman started his career with the Miami Fusion in 2000, before moving on to Colorado in 2003. He was traded to Real Salt Lake in 2007.

Beckerman was named captain of RSL in 2008 and a year later helped lead the club to its only MLS Cup title. RSL also reached the CONCACAF Champions League final in 2011, U.S. Open Cup final in 2013 and the MLS Cup final in 2013.

OBITUARY

Hall of Fame linebacker Kevin Greene, considered one of the fiercest pass rushers in NFL history, has died. He was 58.

Greene died Monday, the family confirmed, as did the Pro Football Hall of Fame. No cause of death was given.

A two-time All-Pro and five-time Pro Bowl selection, Greene finished his career with 160 sacks, which ranks third in league history behind only Bruce Smith (200) and Reggie White (198). He also had 23 forced fumbles and five interceptions.

Greene was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2016.

He played 15 seasons in the NFL for four teams: the Los Angeles Rams (1985–1992), Pittsburgh Steelers (1993–1995), Carolina Panthers (1996, 1998-99) and San Francisco 49ers. He was All-Pro in 1994 and 1996.

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