Sports briefs for 12/31/13: OSU still without DE Spence


COLUMBUS -- Ohio State coach Urban Meyer says he may know today about the availability of All-Big Ten defensive end Noah Spence, who did not travel with the team to the Orange Bowl because of a "personal issue."

The Buckeyes are preparing to play Clemson on Friday night.

Spence did not travel with the team Sunday. Meyer isn't revealing details about the issue.

The sophomore leads the team and is second in the Big Ten in sacks with 8.0 and is sixth in the league with 13.5 tackles for loss.

Meyer also says cornerback Bradley Roby (knee bone bruise) and linebacker Curtis Grant (back) are still recovering from injuries and several players missed practice with a stomach virus.

• Football

Hartline hurt: A person familiar with the situation says Miami Dolphins receiver Brian Hartline has a torn posterior cruciate ligament in his left knee that will not require surgery.

Permission to speak: A team spokesman says Broncos offensive coordinator Adam Gase is postponing any interviews with other teams until after Denver's season is over.

The Cleveland Browns sought the Broncos' permission to interview Gase about their vacant head coaching position Monday following the firing of Rob Chudzinski.

Bengals moves: The Bengals put tight end Alex Smith and defensive tackle Devon Still on injured reserve Monday, getting their roster ready for the playoffs.

Smith suffered a dislocated wrist during a 34-17 win over Baltimore on Sunday. He played in all 16 games and had three catches for 12 yards.

Tebow joins SEC Network: Tim Tebow has his next football job -- talking about the sport on TV.

The Heisman Trophy winner has been hired as a college football analyst for the new SEC Network, but says he still hopes to play quarterback in the NFL.

Entering draft: Washington running back Bishop Sankey will skip his senior season and enter the NFL draft after the best rushing season in school history.

• Basketball

Fischer withdraws: Indiana freshman Luke Fischer has withdrawn from school and is expected to transfer.

Fischer, a 6-foot-11 center, played in all 13 games for the Hoosiers (10-3) and was averaging 2.8 points and 2.1 rebounds in 10.0 minutes.

Men's poll: Arizona and Syracuse lead the same top five teams in The Associated Press' college basketball poll for the fourth straight week.

The three Big Ten schools -- Ohio State, Wisconsin and Michigan State -- remained third through fifth.

Women's top 25: UConn continued its unanimous run atop the Top 25 on Monday after opening up American Athletic Conference play with a victory over Cincinnati.

Notre Dame remained second after surviving a tough game at Oregon State. Duke, Stanford and Tennessee rounded out the first five.

Out a week: Los Angeles Lakers guard Xavier Henry will be out for at least a week after bruising his right knee during a loss to Philadelphia on Sunday night.

• Elsewhere

World juniors: Nic Petan broke a tie on a power play with 2:46 left in Canada's 5-3 comeback victory over Slovakia on Monday in the world junior hockey tournament.

In the other Group A game, Germany beat the Czech Republic 3-0. In Group B, Finland beat Russia 4-1, and Switzerland edged Norway 3-2.

Olympic concerns: The bombings in Russia serve as a chilling reminder of what the Winter Olympics represent to terrorists: a high-profile target with more than 2,500 athletes waving the flags of nearly 90 nations.

So, while many Olympic leaders called for calm the day after two bombings about 400 miles from Sochi killed at least 31 people, some of the athletes heading to Sochi spoke of a different reality -- their security is never sure thing.

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