Update on the latest sports


Peyton Manning, Charles Woodson top Hall of Fame candidates

UNDATED (AP) — More than two decades ago Charles Woodson beat out Peyton Manning for the Heisman Trophy. On Saturday, they likely will share an even more impressive football honor: entry into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Manning and Woodson are two of the most dominant players at their positions in the NFL from 1998 until their retirements in early 2016. They are among four first-year-eligible finalists. During the NFL Honors television show when The Associated Press announces its 2020 individual awards they are among the leading contenders for induction.

The other first-year eligibles under consideration for the August enshrinements are former Lions receiver Calvin Johnson, and sack master Jared Allen, who played for four teams.

The other finalists:

— Three more defensive backs, including current 49ers general manager John Lynch. This is Lynch’s eighth time as a finalist. It’s the first for Ronde Barber and the second for appearance in the finals for Leroy Butler.

— Along with Johnson are wideouts Torry Holt and Reggie Wayne, who was one of Manning’s top targets for the Colts.

— Another dependable defensive linemen, Richard Seymour, in the finals for the third time.

— Zach Thomas, who also excelled on special teams, is one of three linebackers making the finals, joining the late Sam Mills — a star in the USFL and then the NFL — and Clay Matthews, who led some strong Cleveland defenses from 1978-1993 before playing three season in Atlanta.

— Two offensive linemen who have been frequent finalists: Alan Faneca and Tony Boselli. Faneca, who played guard and tackle and starred for three franchises (Steelers, Jets, Cardinals) has made his sixth final in as many years of eligibility while tackle Boselli, a standout for Jacksonville, reached the finals for a fifth time.

Three previously announced candidates are coach Tom Flores, contributor Bill Nunn and senior Drew Pearson.


Highlights: Alabama visits Missouri, Virginia hosts Pittsburgh, UCLA visits Southern Cal

UNDATED (AP) — The SEC’s top two men’s basketball teams meet when No. 10 Alabama visits No. 18 Missouri on Saturday. The Crimson Tide bounced back big from having its 10-game winning streak snapped by No. 24 Oklahoma State in the SEC/Big 12 Challenge, routing LSU 78-60. Missouri is coming of a 75-70 win over Kentucky and has its best 15-game start since 2013-14 season. The Tigers have also won five of six since a COVID-19 pause last month. The game features three of the SEC’s top scorers in Mizzou’s Xavier Pinson and Alabama’s Jaden Shackelford and John Petty.

It’s rare that the North Carolina-Duke rivalry isn’t the headliner on the ACC schedule, but with both unranked there is conference-leading No. 14 Virginia hosting Pittsburgh on Saturday. The Cavaliers rebounded from their first conference loss of the season with a seven-point victory at North Carolina State on Wednesday night, while Pitt was notching an 83-72 home victory over No. 16 Virginia Tech, the only team to beat the Cavaliers in conference action.

Duke and North Carolina enter their latest rivalry game in the unusual position of being unranked. Saturday’s game will mark the first with both teams unranked in The Associated Press men’s college basketball poll since February 1960. The Tar Heels are coming off a loss to Clemson that was filled with turnovers and bad shooting. The Blue Devils are coming off a loss at Miami in a performance Hall of Fame coach Mike Krzyzewski (shuh-SHEF’-skee) labeled “soft.”

No. 21 UCLA visits crosstown rival Southern California Saturday night in a nationally televised game matching the Pac-12′s two best teams at Galen Center. The Bruins lead the Pac-12 with a 9-1 mark. The Trojans are in second place with a record of 8-2. The game on Saturday night features USC star freshman Evan Mobley, whose eight double-doubles lead the Pac-12, and his older brother Isaiah. UCLA is winning without star players or future first-round draft picks. Bruins top scorer Chris Smith had his season ended early by a torn ACL.


Stricker lurking as Schauffele leads

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (AP) — Steve Stricker is threatening to become the oldest player to win a PGA Tour event.

Less than three weeks from his 54th birthday, Stricker fired a 5-under 66 to get within a stroke of leader Xander Schauffele (SHOW’-flee) entering the weekend of the Phoenix Open at TPC Scottsdale. The U.S. Ryder Cup captain bogeyed his final hole to prevent him from catching Schauffele.

Sam Snead is the oldest winner of a PGA event, taking the 1965 Greater Greensboro Open at 52 years, 10 months and eight days. Davis Love is the last 50-something to win on the tour, doing it at 51 in the 2015 Wyndham Championship.

The fourth-ranked Schauffele is coming off a second-place tie last weekend at Torrey Pines. He played the back nine Friday in 6-under 30 in the afternoon for a 64 that leaves him minus-12.


Williams, Osaka and Azarenka withdraw from Australian Open tuneup events

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — A run of withdrawals has taken star players out of tuneup events on the weekend before the Australian Open is due to begin. Former Australian Open champions Naomi Osaka and Victoria Azarenka pulled out of women’s tournaments a day after Serena Williams withdrew, all citing soreness or niggling injuries but all vowing they’ll be fine for the year’s first major.

Alexander Zverev hurt his back while playing for Germany in the ATP Cup but still took it the distance before falling to Daniil Medvedev in a result that ensured Russia’s spot in the final.

The Australian Open starts Monday.