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Tuesday’s Morning Mashup: Gay NFL player reportedly considers coming out 03.26.13 at 7:53 am ET
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Welcome to Tuesday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

NBA: Knicks at Celtics, 7 p.m. (TNT; WEEI-FM)
NBA: Clippers at Mavericks, 9:30 p.m. (TNT)
College basketball: NIT, Maryland at Alabama, 7:30 p.m. (ESPN)
NHL: Rangers at Flyers, 7:30 p.m. (NBCSN)
MLB preseason: Cardinals at Mets, 1 p.m. (ESPN)
MLB preseason: White Sox at Rangers, 4 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB Network: Astros at Yankees, 7 p.m. (MLB Network)


‘™¦ Could the NFL have the first openly gay athlete in a major American team sport? According to NFL writer Mike Freeman, it might happen this spring.

After interviewing several current and former players, Freeman wrote Monday that a current player is considering making a public announcement of his homosexuality and attempting to continue his career.

The player’s concern, according to the report, is not his teammates but the treatment he might receive from homophobic fans.

“I honestly think the players of the NFL have been ready for an openly gay player for quite some time now,” free agent linebacker Scott Fujita told Freeman. “Trust me, the coming out of a player would create much bigger waves outside the locker room than inside. The way I’ve seen the conversation around LGBT issues evolve, especially in the past few years, has been encouraging. Guys are more accepting than they used to be. Even those who raise personal objections to homosexuality, some of whom are good friends of mine, would still be able to coexist and accept a gay teammate.”

‘™¦ According to a forthcoming book about Lenny Dykstra, the former Mets and Phillies outfielder is a sociopath who consistently exhibited racist and sexist behavior before eventually landing in jail on charges including bankruptcy fraud and grand theft auto.

The book is called “Nailed! The Improbable Rise and Spectacular Fall of Lenny Dykstra” and its author, Christopher Frankie, at one point worked for Dykstra until quitting because he wasn’t being paid. Frankie details Dykstra’s abusive and destructive behavior, especially his mistreatment of employees, women and even his own family, from whom Dykstra reportedly stole thousands of dollars.

‘™¦ Royce White, who only days ago tweeted that he was leaving the Rockets’ D-League affiliate to spend the rest of the season in Houston, returned to the Rio Grand Valley Vipers. White, who had claimed a team doctor advised him to leave the Vipers, tweeted Monday that a “miscommunication” with the Rockets had been cleared up.

White, a first-round draft pick (16th overall) who has acknowledged having an anxiety disorder, has played in 12 games for the Vipers, averaging 9.6 points and 5.6 rebounds.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On March 26, 1974, the Red Sox released which two future Hall of Famers?

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Read More: Lenny Dykstra, Royce White,
Friday’s Morning Mashup: Jeremy Lin celebrates Harvard’s upset win 03.22.13 at 8:04 am ET
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Welcome to Friday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

NBA: Celtics at Mavericks, 8:30 p.m. (CSNNE; WEEI-FM)
NBA: Pistons at Heat, 7:30 p.m. (NBA TV)
College basketball: NCAA tournament, Albany vs. Duke, 12:15 p.m. (CBS; WEEI-AM)
College basketball: NCAA tournament, Mississippi vs. Wisconsin, 12:40 p.m. (truTV)
College basketball: NCAA tournament, Temple vs. NC State, 1:40 p.m. (TBS)
College basketball: NCAA tournament, Pacific vs. Miami, 2:10 p.m. (TNT)
College basketball: NCAA tournament, Cincinnati vs. Creighton, 2:45 p.m. (CBS; WEEI-AM)
College basketball: NCAA tournament, La Salle vs. Kansas State, 3:10 p.m. (truTV)
College basketball: NCAA tournament, James Madison vs. Indiana, 4:10 p.m. (TBS; WEEI-AM)
College basketball: NCAA tournament, Colorado vs. Illinois, 4:40 p.m. (TNT)
College basketball: NCAA tournament, FGCU vs. Georgetown, 6:50 p.m. (TBS)
College basketball: NCAA tournament, Iona vs Ohio State, 7:15 p.m. (CBS; WEEI-AM)
College basketball: NCAA tournament, Villanova vs. North Carolina, 7:20 p.m. (TNT)
College basketball: NCAA tournament, Northwestern State vs. Florida, 7:27 p.m. (truTV)
College basketball: NCAA tournament, Oklahoma vs. San Diego State, 9:20 p.m. (TBS)
College basketball: NCAA tournament, Iowa State vs Notre Dame, 9:45 p.m. (CBS; WEEI-AM)
College basketball: NCAA tournament, Western Kentucky vs. Kansas, 9:50 p.m. (TNT)
College basketball: NCAA tournament, Minnesota vs. UCLA, 9:57 p.m. (truTV)
College basketball: NIT tournament, Arizona State at Baylor, 8 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: NIT tournament, Stony Brook at Iowa, 9:30 p.m. (ESPNU)
NHL: Penguins at Islanders, 7 p.m. (NHL Network)
NHL: Red Wings at Ducks, 10 p.m. (NHL Network)
College hockey: Hockey East semifinal, Providence vs. Lowell, 5 p.m. (NESN)
College hockey: Hockey East semifinal, Boston University vs. Boston College, 8 p.m. (NESN)
MLB preseason: Tigers at Nationals, 1 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB preseason: Cubs at Brewers, 4 p.m. (WGN)
MLB preseason: Royals at Angels, 4 p.m. (MLB Network)


‘™¦ Harvard’s upset of New Mexico late Thursday night might have messed up most of America’s NCAA tournament brackets, but those with Harvard ties were celebrating the win.

The school’s only current NBA alumnus, Rockets guard Jeremy Lin, posted a message and photo on Facebook, writing: YYYYYYYEEEEEESSSSSSSSS!!! HARVARD winssss!!! hahahahhah i told you’€¦. #threepointgoggles

Tweeted the Harvard Lampoon: America, we are sorry for messing up your brackets and also your financial system and everything else

Not all Harvard alumni were believers. President Barack Obama predicted a New Mexico win, even though he attended Harvard Law School and is close friends with the father of Crimson sophomore walk-on guard Alex Nesbitt.

Said Nesbitt in the days leading up to the game: “If we were to pull off an upset, [the president] would know about it and be excited for sure.”

‘™¦ The Royce White saga continues, as the would-be Rockets rookie tweeted that he’s leaving his D-League team and returning to Houston in order to prepare for next season. White, who battles anxiety disorder, has yet to play for the Rockets this season.

Tweeted White: Have been advised by our team physician it is most logical I be in Houston the remainder of the season. Thank @rgvvipers for having me.

Added White: Working out in Houston to transition to next year has been medically deemed the healthiest option. I’m excited to get to work.

The Rockets, who reportedly did not take part in White’s decision, said only that White is still on the Rio Grande Valley Vipers roster.

Following negative feedback, White tweeted later: Don’t understand the uproar because I’m working out in Houston’€¦ Lol relax ppl Showing you’re too high strung over sports.

‘™¦ Lakers center Dwight Howard turned up at Los Angeles International Airport on Thursday, working the Delta Airlines check-in counter and taking boarding passes for a flight to Hawaii. Accompanied by the Laker Girls, he also ran a trivia contest.

“I am part of Delta, the team. They are the official airline for the Laker Girls and the Lakers,” Howard said. “This is a great experience for me to come out and enjoy L.A.”

It provided a rare lighthearted moment in what has mostly been a rough season for Howard, due to be a free agent this offseason. He had little to say regarding his future Thursday, only joking: “Will I re-sign with Delta? That’s a good one.”

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On March 22, 1995, the Celtics raised a number to the rafters in honor of which player?

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Read More: Barack Obama, Dwight Howard, Jeremy Lin, Royce White
Monday’s Morning Mashup: Seahawks CB Richard Sherman receives smack after talking smack 01.07.13 at 7:59 am ET
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Welcome to Monday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

College football: National championship, Notre Dame vs. Alabama, 8 p.m. (ESPN; WEEI-AM)
NBA: Celtics at Knicks, 7:30 p.m. (CSNNE; WEEI-FM)
NBA: Cavaliers at Bulls, 8 p.m. (WGN)
College basketball: Notre Dame at Cincinnati, 6:30 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Indiana at Penn State, 7 p.m. (Big Ten Network)


‘™¦ The Seahawks rallied from a 14-0 deficit for a 24-14 victory over the Redskins on Sunday, and loud-mouthed Seattle cornerback Richard Sherman continued his brash ways after the game ended. Sherman, who gave Patriots quarterback Tom Brady an earful following their game in Seattle on Oct. 14, didn’t get away unscathed this time, as Washington lineman Trent Williams shoved his hand in Sherman’s face and smacked him away.

According to Sherman, Williams initiated the confrontation. “He came up and tapped me, ‘What’s up now? I’ll swing on you,” Sherman told USA Today, saying that he responded: “Swing!”

Added Sherman: “He told me he was going to swing, and he swung. That’s what he did, and that’s that. He thought I was going to be scared. I’m not scared.”

Sherman acknowledged that his chirping must be getting to opponents.

“I guess so,” he said. “You know, the playoffs, everybody gets a little frustrated. You lose, your season’s over. I guess you can call it frustration. But you never want to be involved in that. I wasn’t looking for anything. I was trying to shake hands. That’s how it happens sometimes.”

Williams admitted he might have overreacted. “Just high emotions, man,” he said. “I let them get the best of me. It’s nobody’s fault but mine. I’ve got to calm down a little bit.”

Later in the evening, Sherman and Williams worked things out via Twitter.

Tweeted Sherman: Received a very classy text from @TrentW71. Great player! This is an emotional game no ill will either way. Have a great Pro Bowl! Well deserved.

‘™¦ The Rockets and first-round draft pick Royce White continued their dispute Sunday when the team suspended the forward for “refusing to provide services” required by his contract.

White will not be paid during his suspension, although Rockets general manager Daryl Morey said the team continues to try to work out an agreement with White, who refused an assignment to Houston’s D-League affiliate a week ago.

White, who has been critical of the team’s efforts to help with his anxiety disorder, continued to voice his displeasure via Twitter.

Wrote White: Threats, Fines, Suspension won’t deter me. I won’t accept illogical health decisions, I will keep asking for safety & health. #BeWell @dmorey.

‘™¦ A former NFL draft pick who played in the Canadian Football League in 2012 died over the weekend while participating in a flag football tournament in Miami. Wide receiver Chandler Williams, 27, was a seventh-round draft pick out of Florida International in 2007. He was on the practice squads of the Vikings in 2007, the Dolphins in 2008 and the Chiefs from 2009-11.

Williams also was a member of the Tampa Bay Storm of the Arena Football League. He caught 83 passes for 996 yards and 17 touchdowns last season.

Said Storm president Derrick Brooks: “We are shocked and saddened.”

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On Jan. 7, 1991, who was named to succeed Rod Rust as coach of the Patriots?

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Read More: Chandler Williams, Richard Sherman, Royce White, Trent Williams
Monday’s Morning Mashup: Tony Sparano reportedly will take fall for Jets’ offensive woes 12.31.12 at 7:39 am ET
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Welcome to Monday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

College football: Music City Bowl, NC State vs. Vanderbilt, noon (ESPN)
College football: Sun Bowl, USC vs. Georgia Tech, 2 p.m. (CBS)
College football: Liberty Bowl, Iowa State vs. Tulsa, 3:30 p.m. (ESPN)
College football: Chick-fil-A Bowl, LSU vs. Clemson, 7:30 p.m. (ESPN; WEEI-FM)
College basketball: Dartmouth at Boston College, 2 p.m. (WEEI-AM)
College basketball: Harvard at St. Mary’s, 8 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Cincinnati at Pittsburgh, noon (ESPN2)
College basketball: Michigan State at Minnesota, 2 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Central Connecticut at Syracuse, 3 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Indiana at Iowa, 4 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: UNC Greensboro at NC State, 5 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Gonzaga at Oklahoma State, 6 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: New Mexico at Saint Louis, 7:30 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: North Texas at Middle Tennessee, 8 p.m. (ESPNU)


‘™¦ The Jets plan to fire offensive coordinator Tony Sparano following the team’s dismal offensive performance this season, according to an ESPN report. Sparano was hired last offseason after being fired as head coach of the Dolphins, but the Jets finished 30th in total offense and were unable to produce much from the wildcat package Sparano had success with in Miami.

Of course, part of the offense’s troubles can be traced to the quarterback position, where Mark Sanchez struggled and neither Greg McElroy nor Tim Tebow showed much in limited action. Sanchez returned to his starting role for Sunday’s finale against the Bills due to McElroy’s concussion, and he continued to cough up the ball, turning it over twice (one interception, one fumble) in New York’s 28-9 loss.

“This game was a microcosm right here of everything we’€™ve done this year,” linebacker Calvin Pace said after the Jets fell to 6-10. “I know those guys [on offense] are trying. It’€™s one of those things, man, when you’€™re dealing with professional football and the best of the best, trying isn’€™t good enough — trying will get everybody fired.”

Said coach Rex Ryan: “The future is going to be addressed at a different time. … Six wins isn’t up to anybody’s expectations, for this team and certainly not mine.”

‘™¦ Outfielder Torii Hunter, who recently left the Angels to sign with the Tigers as a free agent, is getting some attention for a comment he made in a weekend Los Angeles Times story on gay athletes.

Asked how a homosexual teammate would be treated in the locker room, Hunter made it clear he would have an issue.

“For me, as a Christian ‘€¦ I will be uncomfortable because in all my teachings and all my learning, biblically, it’s not right,” he says. “It will be difficult and uncomfortable.”

Added Clippers guard Grant Hill: “It’s still taboo in the locker room.”

‘™¦ Rockets rookie Royce White, who has not played a game this season, refused an assignment to the D-League and made it clear he remains far apart with the team on a plan to deal with his anxiety disorder.

“I do wish to play, but I only intend to do so with the collaboration and recommendation of trained professionals,” White said a statement released Sunday. “The purpose of a doctor’s confirmation is to ensure that health decisions are made in the sole interest of health and not conflicted with business. My only hope is that decision-makers involved realize that doctors are the only logical source to decide action.

“There is an admitted lack of knowledge on behalf of the Rockets and the NBA, it becomes transparent as they choose to forgo the knowledge of trained professionals and make independent decisions for something as complex as mental health without consulting any doctors.”

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On Dec. 31, 1978, in the Patriots’ first playoff game in Foxboro, New England lost 31-14 to which team?

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Read More: Grant Hill, Mark Sanchez, Rex Ryan, Royce White