WASHINGTON Roger Clemens spent Thursday going door-to-door on Capitol Hill, lobbying congressmen investigating whether he used drugs.
His accuser, Brian McNamee, gave a seven-hour deposition behind closed doors, and the trainer's lawyers presented photographs of evidence they said prove the star pitcher was injected with steroids.
McNamee headed straight for an exit, not speaking a word to reporters, when he emerged from his interview with lawyers from the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. His attorneys wouldn't discuss the deposition, but they did talk at length about two color photographs they showed the committee for the first time.
"Roger Clemens has put himself in a position where his legacy as the greatest pitcher in baseball will depend less on his ERA and more on his DNA," said one of McNamee's lawyers, Earl Ward.
Less than an hour later, and a short walk away inside the Rayburn House Office Building, Clemens held his own news conference, during which his lawyers repeatedly attacked McNamee's character and scoffed at McNamee's newly presented evidence."This man has a total history of lying," Clemens' attorney Rusty Hardin said.
NBA: Francis lost for season
HOUSTON Houston Rockets guard Steve Francis will have season-ending surgery to repair a torn quadriceps tendon in his right knee.
The 6-foot-3 Francis hasn't played since Dec. 15. He's appeared in only 10 games this season with three starts, averaging 5.5 points and three assists. The team said Francis will have surgery Feb. 25.
Francis signed a one-year contract with the Rockets with an option for a second year, returning to the city where he played from 1999-2004. He was traded to Orlando in 2004 in a deal that brought Tracy McGrady to the Rockets. After two seasons with the Magic, Francis spent two seasons with New York.The former Maryland star has career averages of 18 points and six assists, but his numbers have steadily declined since he left the Magic.
NFL: Spagnuolo withdraws name
WASHINGTON Steve Spagnuolo pulled out of the running for the Washington Redskins coaching job Thursday, citing his desire to remain with the Super Bowl champion New York Giants.
"His heart is in New York City," Spagnuolo's agent, Bob Lamonte, told The Associated Press. "He loves the ownership. He loves the players. He feels he has to stay there."
The Giants promptly rewarded Spagnuolo with a three-year, $6 million contract, making the defensive coordinator one of the highest-paid assistants in the league.With Spagnuolo crossed off the list, Ron Meeks, former University of Utah coach Jim Fassel and Steve Mariucci were among those who remained in contention to replace Joe Gibbs, who resigned Jan. 8. However, given the secretive nature of the process, the new coach could be a yet-to-be revealed candidate who has interviewed with owner Dan Snyder during the four weeks of the coaching search.
College football: Stewart dismisses 3
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. West Virginia football coach Bill Stewart dismissed three players charged with felony possession of marijuana with the intent to deliver.
Stewart issued a statement Thursday that linebacker John Holmes, defensive lineman James Ingram and running back Ed Collington were kicked off for a violation of team rules. None were starters.Stewart says the players will retain their scholarships through the end of the school year, pending the legal process.
Baseball: Martinez at cockfight?
A video of New York Mets pitcher Pedro Martinez and Hall of Famer Juan Marichal at a cockfight was posted this week on YouTube.
Martinez and Marichal laugh before releasing the roosters. The two took part as honorary "soltadores," the word used to describe the person who puts the animal into the fight.
RED SOX SAY SCHILLING'S SHOULDER INJURED: BOSTON Curt Schilling has an injured right shoulder, and the pitcher and the Boston Red Sox have been squabbling over whether he should have surgery that could cost him the season or try something less drastic.
"Curt Schilling was examined by Red Sox doctors in January after he reported feeling right shoulder discomfort," the Red Sox said in a statement Thursday night. "Curt has started a program of rest, rehabilitation and shoulder strengthening in an attempt to return to pitching."The Boston Herald reported on its Web site that Schilling may have injured his rotator cuff or labrum, a problem serious enough to consider surgery that could keep him out for the whole 2008 season. The Boston Globe reported later Thursday that even without surgery Schilling would be out until at least the All-Star break.
Golf: Jones leads at Pebble Beach
PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. Kent Jones birdied the two most famous par 3s at Pebble Beach and kept bogeys off his card for a 6-under 66 and a one-shot lead Thursday in the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, an encouraging start for someone who has played 270 tournaments on the PGA Tour without finishing in the top five.
Nationwide Tour grad Roland Thatcher was a shot back along with Q-school grad Brad Adamonis and John Mallinger, third at Pebble Beach last year as a rookie.
Defending champion Phil Mickelson was on the verge of shooting himself out of the tournament until a birdie-eagle-birdie-birdie burst enabled him to recover with a 71 and stay in the game. Greg Norman, playing on the PGA Tour for the first time in 18 months, was holding steady until a four-putt on the 13th hole for a double bogey. He finished with a 76.