Geoff Burke/Getty Images(BLACKSBURG, Va.) -- Virginia Tech extended head football coach Frank Beamer's contract through January 1, 2019 on Wednesday.
“We are pleased to be in a position to present Coach Beamer with this contract extension,” Virginia Tech athletic director Whit Babcock said. “Announcing before our home opener serves as a tangible show of support for the winningest coach in college football who does it the right way, continues our positive momentum in recruiting, and signals the stability of leadership in our program. His stamp on our football program, and our institution, is indelible. This well-deserved extension is a reward for 27 tremendous years, certainly, but also is based upon my observations and work with him these past seven months. His integrity and work ethic is even better than advertised and he still has that competitive fire and wants to move Virginia Tech forward. I believe in him and support him, his staff, and our team. We look forward to a successful 2014 season and beyond.”
During Beamer's 27 seasons in Blacksburg, he has 266 wins -- the most of any active coach in the FBS. Beamer has also led the Hokies to 21 consecutive bowl appearances, six BCS appearancs, four ACC titles, three Big East titles, and a trip to the national championship game.
"As I've stated numerous times, the only job I desire is right here at Virginia Tech," Beamer said in a statement. "My passion and commitment have been further energized with the arrivals of President [Tim] Sands and Whit Babcock and the leadership and vision they provide. I am appreciative of the confidence they continue to show in me and our football program. I can honestly tell you that our program currently stands atop a rock-solid foundation. This coaching staff is the best I've ever had. We've had an influx of talented, young student-athletes into our program and we're hard at work recruiting more just like them."
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images(CHARLOTTE) -- Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton declared Wednesday he will be ready to start week one of the NFL season against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Newton fractured his ribs during last Friday's 30-7 preseason loss to New England. Despite the injury, Newton says it will not hinder his preparation for the season.
"No setback at all,'' Newton said. "I'm excited about the opportunity, and each day brings more confidence that I am close to 100 percent.''
The 25-year-old, who has not missed a regular season start with the Panthers since being drafted in 2011, will travel with the team to Pittsburgh for Carolina's final preseason game against the Steelers -- but will not play.
Last season, Newton led the Panthers to a 12-4 record, throwing for 3,379 yards, 24 touchdowns, 13 interceptions, while also rushing for six touchdowns.
David Lee/Thinkstock(CINCINNATI) -- Linebacker Vontaze Burfict agreed to a four-year, $20.05 million contract extension with the Cincinnati Bengals Wednesday, according to NFL.com.
Burfict, who was an undrafted rookie out of Arizona State in 2012, started all 16 games last season for a Bengals defense that ranked fifth in the NFL in points allowed. He played a big part in that ranking, leading the league in tackles with 171, while also compiling three sacks, eight passes defended, one forced fumble, and an interception.
"It's great to have this deal done and know I'm going to be here beyond this season," Burfict said. "We can have a great defense again this year, even better than the last couple years."
Banana Stock(LOS ANGELES) -- Southern California cornerback Josh Shaw told school officials that he lied about how he suffered his ankle injuries over the weekend, according to a statement released by the school. He has been suspended indefinitely from all team activities by the university.
Shaw claimed he was injured after leaping from the second story of an apartment complex to save his 7-year-old nephew, who was struggling in the pool.
“We are extremely disappointed in Josh,” USC head football coach Steve Sarkisian said in a statement. “He let us all down. As I have said, nothing in his background led us to doubt him when he told us of his injuries, nor did anything after our initial vetting of his story.
“I appreciate that Josh has now admitted that he lied and has apologized. Although this type of behavior is out of character for Josh, it is unacceptable. Honesty and integrity must be at the center of our program. I believe Josh will learn from this. I hope that he will not be defined by this incident, and that the Trojan Family will accept his apology and support him.”
USC did not release details on how Shaw injured himself.
iStockPhoto/Thinkstock(CLEVELAND) -- Cleveland Browns wide receiver Josh Gordon will miss the entire 2014 season after his season-long suspension for violating the NFL’s substance abuse policy was upheld on appeal Wednesday.
The 2013 first-team All-Pro will be allowed to apply for reinstatement following the 2014 season.
“I’d like to apologize to my teammates, coaches, the Cleveland Browns organization and our fans,” Gordon said in a statement. “I am very disappointed that the NFL and its hearing office didn’t exercise better discretion and judgment in my case.”
In 14 games last season, Gordon had 87 receptions for 1,649 yards and nine touchdowns. He was named to his first Pro Bowl in 2013.
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- The Los Angeles Clippers and head coach Doc Rivers have agreed to a contract extension through the 2018-19 season, the club announced on Wednesday. Financial terms of the deal have not been disclosed.
“This is an important day for this organization,” Clippers owner Steve Ballmer said in a statement. “I am excited to work with Doc for a long time as we build a championship culture that will deliver results both on and off the court. Not only is Doc one of the best coaches and executives in the game, but he continually embodies the hard core, committed and resilient character and winning culture that the Clippers represent. It was one of my top priorities to ensure that he was firmly in place as the long-term leader of this team.”
In his inaugural campaign with the Clippers last season, Rivers led them to a 57-25 record and first place in the Pacific Division. They lost in six games in the NBA’s Western Conference Semifinals to the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Rivers led the Boston Celtics to an NBA Championship in 2008.
Brian D. Kersey/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Even though the Kansas City Royals are in the midst of one of their best seasons in decades, manager Ned Yost decided to give the fans a piece of his mind on Tuesday night.
Despite their success this season, the team is just 25th in Major League Baseball in attendance.
“I mean, what, 13,000 people got to see a great game? ...We’re in a pennant race, yeah," Yost, who has been the Royals manager since 2010, said.
"We’ve been working on trying to build this team for the last three or four years to put ourselves in a position where we can contend for a championship. And not only the division, but we want to contend for a world championship. It’s really, really important we have our fans behind us at the stadium," he added.
"I know there’s different things you can do. You can watch it on the Internet. You can watch it on TV. But there’s a real need for our fans to be a part of this," Yost continued. "We had a great crowd last night, and I was kind of hoping we’d have another great crowd tonight, and we really didn’t.”
Heading into Wednesday night, the Royals hold a 1.5 game lead over the Detroit Tigers in the AL Central. The team hasn't made the playoffs since 1985, which is the last time they also won a World Series.
Joe Robbins/Getty Images(FLORHAM PARK, N.J.) -- After he never showed up for the team's preseason game, the New York Jets have suspended cornerback Dimitri Patterson for the remainder of the preseason.
Patterson didn't show up for the team's preseason game last Friday night against the New York Giants. He went AWOL and wasn't heard from for 48 hours.
"I think there's a level of accountability," guard Willie Colon said. "I think if he's able to stand up in front of the team and say, 'Hey, this is how I felt, such-and-such happened,' whether it's right, wrong or indifferent, for him to say something would be welcomed. We'll have to proceed from there."
Though there was speculation that Patterson could be cut, the team has decided to just suspended him until Monday as they get ready for their first game of the 2014 regular season.
The 31-year-old Patterson is a nine-year NFL veteran, but this is his first season with the Jets.
He's battled injuries the past few seasons, as he's played in just 15 out of a possible 48 games over the past three seasons.