- Associated Press - Monday, March 28, 2016

MIAMI (AP) - Hundreds of family, friends and members of the Baltimore Ravens paid respects to Tray Walker, the Ravens cornerback who died after being injured in a dirt bike crash in northwest Miami-Dade.

The Miami Herald reports (https://hrld.us/1UVmdMh) that Walker’s funeral was Saturday. Multiple players and coaches were in attendance including head coach John Harbaugh.

The 23-year-old was injured March 17 when he was riding a white Honda dirt bike, without a helmet and wearing dark clothing.

He collided with a Ford Escape and was taken to a hospital, where he died the next day from his injuries.

Walker grew up in Miami and played for Miami Northwestern High.

SOCCER

PARIS (AP) - French Prime Minister Manuel Valls says the European Championship soccer tournament will go ahead as planned, despite the attacks in Paris last November and Brussels last Tuesday.

Speaking on French state television, Valls said the “strongest answer to terrorists, in addition to the deployment of all intelligence and security measures, is life. The terrorists wanted to suppress life (…). The Euro should be held, and will be held.”

With Europe on high alert following the attacks, there are concerns that Euro 2016 in France from June 10-July 10 could be targeted, and especially the fan zones where spectators gather to watch games on large screens.

Valls said seven to eight million fans are expected to visit the open-air areas and that authorities will ensure their safety with strengthened security measures.

COLLEGE BASKETBALL

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP) - A judge found that ESPN did nothing malicious in its reporting of claims that a former Syracuse University assistant basketball coach sexually abused two ball boys decades ago and his wife had a sexual relationship with one of them.

The libel case came down to whether the wife, Laurie Fine, was a public or private figure. As a public figure, she would have to show malice in the 2012 lawsuit she filed against the network, but as a private figure she would have to show a lesser legal standard of gross irresponsibility.

U.S. Magistrate Judge David E. Peebles threw out the lawsuit Friday after concluding Fine was a public figure because she had served as a radio personality, had easy access to the media and invited public attention to herself and her views about protecting at-risk youth.

Fine is married to Bernie Fine, a one-time assistant Syracuse coach who was fired by the university in November 2011 after allegations of child molestation against him surfaced in the immediate aftermath of the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal at Penn State. He was never charged and has adamantly denied wrongdoing.

Syracuse beat Virginia on Sunday night to advance to the Final Four.

PITTSBURGH (AP) - Pittsburgh hired Kevin Stallings away from Vanderbilt with hopes he can rejuvenate a program that idled during the final years under Jamie Dixon.

Stallings spent the last 17 seasons with the Commodores. He has a 332-220 record while leading his team to seven NCAA Tournament appearances. Vanderbilt was 19-14 this season, losing to Wichita State in the opening round of the NCAAs.

The 55-year-old is a two-time SEC Coach of the Year. He led the Commodores to eight 20-win seasons. He takes over for Dixon, who left Pitt last week after 13 years to take the same job at TCU, his alma mater.

Athletic director Scott Barnes says Stallings plays an up-tempo style and runs his programs with “impeccable character.”

NBA

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Blake Griffin has been medically cleared to return to the Los Angeles Clippers and will immediately begin serving a four-game suspension for punching their assistant equipment manager, the team announced.

Griffin, who has not played since December, practiced with the Clippers on Saturday. He was cleared by the team’s doctor before Sunday’s game against the Denver Nuggets.

In terms of conditioning, coach Doc Rivers said, Griffin still has a long way to go

Griffin sat out the game against Denver and will also miss games against Boston, Minnesota and Oklahoma City. The Clippers imposed the four-game suspension after the forward punched assistant equipment manager Matias Testi in Toronto on Jan. 23.

He missed 41 games because injuries.

BASEBALL

BRADENTON, Fla. (AP) - A man apparently angered by the Tampa Bay Rays’ recent trip to Cuba made his way onto the field and threw a full can of beer into the team’s dugout during a spring training game against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Nobody was hurt. A member of the Pirates’ grounds crew and Rays third base coach Charlie Montoyo restrained the protester until police arrived, briefly delaying the game.

The man was arrested and will be charged with causing a fray, trespassing and assault, Bradenton police Lt. John Affolter said. Police would not yet identify the man.

During the seventh inning, the man moved toward the field from the seats behind third base, jumped a short fence and ran onto the grass in front of the Rays’ dugout at McKechnie Field.

According to players and Bradenton police, the man shouted obscenities about the Castro regime in Cuba. He threw a can of beer that smashed into the back wall of the Rays’ dugout.

“Nobody got hit,” Tampa Bay pitcher Jake Odorizzi said.

OLYMPICS

MOSCOW (AP) - Russia’s sports minister plans to make it illegal for officials to report that an athlete has failed a drug test.

Vitaly Mutko tells Russia’s state sports broadcaster that leaking the name of an athlete who has failed a drug test causes “noise and uproar” and violates the presumption of innocence.

Athletes provide an “A” and “B” sample when they are tested, and if the “A” sample is positive, can request the “B” sample is tested, too. While some athletes have been cleared of doping when a “B” sample comes back negative, such instances are rare.

Mutko accused Russian sports federations of routinely leaking drug test results before “B” samples are tested, adding “we’re now going to administratively and criminally forbid it.”

Russia has faced numerous doping scandals in recent years.

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