In Brief


Ice Box made 3-1 favorite from No. 6 post in Belmont

For a change, Hall of Fame trainer Nick Zito has the favorite for the $1 million Belmont Stakes.

A two-time Belmont winner with long shots Birdstone in 2004 and Da’ Tara in 2008, Zito has two of the top three choices for Saturday’s final leg of the Triple Crown: Ice Box is the 3-1 morning-line favorite, and his other starter, Fly Down, is the 9-2 third pick.

A field of 12 was entered Wednesday for a watered-down Belmont that will be run without Derby winner Super Saver or Preakness winner Lookin At Lucky.

Florida Derby winner Ice Box overcame a troubled trip with a sensational rally to finish second in the Kentucky Derby, and Fly Down was a six-length winner in the Dwyer Stakes last month at Belmont.

Ice Box, who will run from the No. 6 post, skipped the Preakness, and Fly Down is making his Triple Crown race debut. Preakness runner-up First Dude is the 7-2 second choice.


UNLV men’s golf team stands 17th at NCAA Championships

The 12th-ranked UNLV men’s golf team will need a strong effort today to make the third-round cut at the NCAA Championships in Ooltewah, Tenn.

UNLV shot 4-over 292 in the second round for a 10-over 586 total, leaving the Rebels tied for 17th in the 30-team event. The field is cut to eight after today’s round for match play Friday through Sunday, and UNLV is nine strokes out of the top eight.

"We have to play a really solid round," UNLV coach Dwaine Knight said. "We have to have a couple guys get under par."

Derek Ernst shot 1-under 71 to lead the Rebels at 1-under 143, tied for 21st individually.

Florida State fired a 9-under 279 to take the team lead at 14-under 562, five shots ahead of Oklahoma State. San Diego’s Alex Ching shot 66 to take the individual lead at 9-under 135.

Also: UNLV’s football game at Idaho on Sept. 18 will be televised by ESPNU (Digital Cable 320). Kickoff will be at 7:30 p.m. Pacific, the Western Athletic Conference announced.

Kansas chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little ordered a review of athletic director Lew Perkins’ acceptance of thousands of dollars worth of exercise equipment.

Gray-Little said in a statement that Perkins returned the equipment to the now-defunct company that supplied it and paid "a fair rental value." She said she’s directed senior university staff to review the case and finish their investigation within 10 working days.

Perkins’ acceptance of the equipment surfaced days after the university disclosed the results of an investigation into an alleged ticket-scalping scam that might have cost it as much as $3 million.


Roethlisberger gets most reps at Steelers’ voluntary practices

Ben Roethlisberger is taking nearly all the snaps with the regulars and apparently will until the Pittsburgh Steelers’ voluntary practices end next week.

What coach Mike Tomlin isn’t saying is how practice time will be divided during training camp, when the Steelers will be in the unique position of preparing two starting quarterbacks for the same season.

One quarterback must be ready to play during Roethlisberger’s six-game suspension — apparently, Byron Leftwich. Roethlisberger also needs plenty of camp work because he can’t practice while he’s suspended.

During the ongoing voluntary practices, the designated No. 1 quarterback — currently, Roethlisberger — gets nearly all the work with the starters. That’s likely to change once training camp starts July 30 and full contact is permitted.

Also: New England Patriots receiver Wes Welker is running pass routes again, four months after knee surgery.

The NFL’s receptions leader last season participated in the Patriots’ voluntary practice. He took part in agility drills, made cuts while running patterns and caught passes while wearing a brace on his left knee.

St. Louis Rams free safety Oshiomogho Atogwe, the team’s top playmaker the last four seasons, has become an unrestricted free agent after failing to come to an agreement on a multiyear contract. The Rams had a late Tuesday deadline to sign Atogwe, who is coming off shoulder surgery that sidelined him for the final four games last season.

Junior middleweight titleholder Cory Spinks’ defense against Cornelius Bundrage has been postponed. Spinks (37-5, 11 knockouts) was supposed to defend the title in his hometown of St. Louis on June 12, but promoter Don King said conflicting interests forced him to move the bout to a future card.

Vijay Singh won’t have to go through qualifying to play in the U.S. Open in two weeks at Pebble Beach. The U.S. Golf Association granted Singh an exemption, citing his battle against several injuries as a key reason for him dropping out of the top 50 in the world ranking.

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