Sports briefs 1-24-14: Browns hire Mike Pettine after twisting search

TOM WITHERS AP Sports Writer Published:

BEREA -- Mike Pettine knows he might not have been Cleveland's first choice or even the Browns' second pick.

All that matters to the son of a high school coaching legend is that he's the one they selected.

"It's been my life-long dream to be an NFL head coach," Pettine said Thursday, "and however that opportunity presents itself, it's fine with me."

After nearly a month of twists, turns and talk, the Browns found their man.

Buffalo's defensive coordinator, who didn't seem to be on Cleveland's radar when the team began a coaching search last month, signed a five-year contract Thursday and was named the Browns' seventh full-time coach since 1999. Pettine replaces Rob Chudzinski, fired on Dec. 29 after just one season.

• Football

New OSU assistant: Ohio State coach Urban Meyer has filled the last of two vacancies on his coaching staff with the hiring of Chris Ash as the team's co-defensive coordinator/safeties coach.

The 40-year-old Ash was coordinator and secondary coach at Arkansas last season, filling the same role the previous two years at Wisconsin, also under Bret Bielema.

Ash replaces Everett Withers, who left after the season to become head coach at James Madison. Ash, a Drake graduate, will share coordinator duties with holdover Luke Fickell.

Hurtt to Bears: Louisville defensive line coach Clint Hurtt is heading to the Chicago Bears, said a person familiar with the situation.

The person spoke to The Associated Press on the condition of anonymity Thursday because no announcement had been made about Hurtt joining the Bears' staff. Hurtt, 35, was sanctioned last fall by the NCAA for violations committed as a Miami assistant.

• Basketball

Dawson breaks hand: Michigan State's latest film session was a major flop.

Junior forward Branden Dawson will be out four to five weeks after breaking his right hand Thursday when he banged it on a table while watching video.

Dawson said he was reviewing film of the third-ranked Spartans' win over Indiana with teammates and coach Tom Izzo and became angry with his play of late.

Four first-timers: Kobe Bryant called for younger players in the All-Star game, and the fans listened.

They still want Bryant, too.

Stephen Curry, Kevin Love, Paul George and Kyrie Irving were voted NBA All-Stars Thursday, putting four first-time starters in the Feb. 16 game in New Orleans.

Curry, perhaps the biggest snub last season, will join him in the Western Conference backcourt. Love passed Dwight Howard in the final days of voting and will start in the frontcourt along with Oklahoma City's Kevin Durant and the Clippers' Blake Griffin.

• Elsewhere

Cink leads: The best score belonged to Stewart Cink. The best round belonged to Pat Perez. Tiger Woods didn't come close to claiming either Thursday in the Farmers Insurance Open, where the seven-time champion failed to break par in the opening round for first time in his career.

Cink ran off three straight birdies late in his round on the easier North Course at Torrey Pines for an 8-under 64. That gave him a one-shot lead over Gary Woodland, who also was on the North, which is more than 600 yards shorter.

Chipper starts fire: Former Atlanta Braves star Chipper Jones committed an error in retirement, starting a fire when he dumped some ashes in the woods near his suburban home after cleaning out his fireplace.

Jones tweeted about the fire, which broke out Wednesday evening. It was quickly extinguished by the Roswell fire department.

Game will be cool: They're just about ready to drop the puck at Dodger Stadium.

The NHL's ice crew has built a fully functioning rink in the middle of the iconic baseball field, and only a few tweaks remain before Saturday's historic outdoor game between the Los Angeles Kings and the Anaheim Ducks.

It's the NHL's first official outdoor game in a warm-weather climate.

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