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DESTIN, Fla. (AP) — LSU men's basketball coach Will Wade acknowledges making "some mistakes" when he refused to speak with school officials in March regarding a leaked FBI wiretap transcript with that begged questions about whether the coach committed recruiting violations. Wade spoke publicly Tuesday for the first time since March 7. He said during the opening day of the Southeastern Conference Spring Meeting that "If I could go back and do it again, I would have taken the meeting."
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Kumar Rocker looks almost out of place on a pitcher's mound. The 6-foot-4, 255-pound Vanderbilt freshman pitcher played defensive end in high school, and football runs in his family. His father, Tracy, was the first Southeastern Conference player to win both the Lombardi Award and Outland Trophy at Auburn before playing four seasons in the NFL. Uncle David was defensive tackle with the Los Angeles Rams in the early 1990s. Kumar says baseball for him was an easy choice.
DESTIN, Fla. (AP) — Tennessee linebacker Darrin Kirkland Jr. has decided against returning to the Volunteers as a fifth-year senior this fall. Tennessee coach Jeremy Pruitt says both Kirkland and tight end James Brown have given up football. Kirkland made 28 career starts but dealt with injuries for much of his career. Brown never appeared in a game for Tennessee.
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — South Carolina's all-Southeastern Conference freshman guard A.J. Lawson has withdrawn from the NBA draft. Lawson announced his decision on social media. Lawson is a 6-foot-6 freshman who averaged more than 13 points and four rebounds last season. Lawson started 28 games and will be the team's leading returning scorer next season.
UNDATED (AP) — The Southeastern Conference hired international accounting firm Deloitte to conduct a review of its football officiating. Commissioner Greg Sankey says the move was a reaction in part to the often opinionated view of referees by the public and media. He says the SEC was not responding to a particular problem. He says the conference needs to be transparent when mistakes are made, but cannot be silent while officials face unjust criticism.
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Vanderbilt is making some improvements to its football stadium to address what athletic director Malcolm Turner says are "very clear and obvious limitations" until a plan is devised to upgrade all of the university's athletic facilities. Memorial Gym and Hawkins Field also undergo renovations. The football stadium's last major renovation was in 1981. For now, Vanderbilt is taking down one videoboard and upgrading another videoboard.
TORONTO (AP) — Toronto will host a college basketball tripleheader featuring three teams that reached the NCAA Tournament this past season. The inaugural James Naismith Classic on Nov. 16 has Tennessee facing Washington, Buffalo meeting Harvard and Rutgers matching up with St. Bonaventure. Tennessee reached a regional semifinal this past season. Washington and Buffalo advanced to the NCAA Tournament's round of 32.
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