Cal’s Montgomery Retires
Mike Montgomery, head coach of the California basketball team, discusses his retirement during a news conference Monday, March 31, 2014, in Berkeley, Calif. Montgomerys departure comes after 32 years as a collegiate head coach at 677 career victories according to Cals athletics department. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
Berkeley, Calif. — California coach Mike Montgomery is retiring after six seasons at the school.
Cal announced the decision after Montgomery met with athletic director Sandy Barbour on Monday. ESPN first reported Montgomery’s decision.
The 67-year-old Montgomery decided to retire following an up-and-down season that ended last Wednesday with a loss to SMU in the quarterfinals of the NIT.
The Golden Bears went 21-14 and made the postseason for the sixth time in as many years under Montgomery but struggled late in the season and missed out on a return trip to the NCAAs.
Montgomery finishes his career with a 677-317 record, having also spent 18 years at Stanford and eight at Montana. Montgomery also had disappointing seasons as head coach of the NBA’s Golden State Warriors in between his stints at Stanford and Cal.
Johnson In-Law Dies In Skydiving Accident
San Diego — A skydiver found dead after a collision with another parachutist in eastern San Diego County has been identified as the 27-year-old brother-in-law of NASCAR driver Jimmie Johnson.
The county medical examiner’s office said in a statement Monday that Jordan Jor-El Janway died Sunday while skydiving with two others at Jamul. Janway collided with one of the other jumpers during freefall, failed to open his parachute and impacted the ground.
A statement posted on Johnson’s website says Janway was the brother of Johnson’s wife, Chandra. The statement asks for prayers and privacy.
Jackson, Redskins Meeting
Washington — A person familiar with the situation says three-time Pro Bowl receiver DeSean Jackson planned to visit the Washington Redskins on Monday night and today.
The person says the Redskins were one of several teams interested in Jackson, who was released Friday by the Philadelphia Eagles after a career-best season and amid reports of off-the-field concerns. The person spoke to The Associated Press Monday on condition of anonymity because the Redskins had not announced the visit.
The Eagles had tried to trade Jackson and there were questions about his work ethic. He also upset the organization further when he lobbied for a new contact shortly after Philadelphia was eliminated in the playoffs.
When Jackson was released, he issued a statement denying he was associated with gang activity.
Saban: Athletes Deserve ‘Voice’
Tuscaloosa, Ala. — Alabama coach Nick Saban says college athletes should have “a voice in what happens” to them during their careers.
Asked about the prospect of a union, Saban said Monday night he’s always supported players’ rights and that they should be compensated “the best that we can to help them.” He didn’t give an opinion on last week’s ruling by a regional director of the National Labor Relations Board that Northwestern’s football team can bargain with the school as employees. The school is appealing.
Saban says it’s easy to determine how much a scholarship costs, but that he’d like to see a study to determine the total value. The former Kent State player, who made about $6 million last year, says it’s been worth a “pretty significant” amount to him.
Russian, Ukrainian Teams Set Aside Tensions
Moscow — Boxing teams from Russia and Ukraine put aside political tensions Monday to contest a World Series of Boxing quarterfinal in Moscow, with the hosts landing most of the blows in the ring.
The Russian Boxing Team took a 4-1 lead against the Ukraine Otamans ahead of the return meeting in Donetsk next weekend in a contest that received added attention following Russia’s annexation of Crimea and escalated military buildup on the Ukrainian border.
The Ukrainian team was greeted by polite applause by the crowd of about 500 people at the Arena Moscow, which included Russian Olympic Committee chief Alexander Zhukov and International Boxing Association president Wu Ching-Kuo. The crowd also stood up when the Ukrainian national anthem was played before the first bout, and Wu said the contest was marked by “sportsmanship.”
“I think that the audience has really showed their support for both teams,” Wu said.
Occassional cries of “Russia” and “Ukraine” drifted across from the supporters sitting ringside, but that rarely managed to drown out the trainers’ instructions.
“A good atmosphere,” Ukrainian fighter Denys Berinchyk said. “Boxing fans who love boxing, and love Ukrainian boxing. It’s a better reception for us than, for example, Germany. In Germany they greeted us with whistles and jeers and here with normal applause.”
The Ukrainian team took an early lead as 20-year-old Hasanboy Dusmatov beat Olympic bronze medalist David Ayrapetyan in a split decision in a light flyweight bout.
However, the Russian Boxing Team won the next four fights by unanimous decision, including a surprising victory when World University Games winner Radzhab Butaev beat Berinchyk, the Olympic silver medalist in light welterweight.
The Russian franchise is owned by oil and gas engineering company Stroytransgaz, which is controlled by Kremlin-linked billionaire Gennady Timchenko, who was placed on a U.S. Treasury sanctions list following the annexation of Crimea. The Ukrainian franchise is run by the national boxing federation.
The International Boxing Association allows fighters to receive a salary for competing in the World Series while still keeping their amateur eligibility.
The winner is scheduled to face either the USA Knockouts or the Cuba Domadores in the semifinals on April 25 and May 2.