WISCONSIN SPORTS ROUNDUP: Corey Hart now a Seattle Mariner
Milwaukee Brewers' general manager Doug Melvin said there was no way the team could match the contract offer that Corey Hart got from Seattle. The veteran first baseman agreed to a one-year contract with the Mariners yesterday that guarantees him six-million dollars plus 13-and-a-half million in incentives. The Journal Sentinel said the Brewers offered a four-million-dollar guarantee, and two-and-a-half million in incentives. Melvin said he didn't blame the 31-year-old Hart for leaving. He said the financial numbers were just too far apart. Hart spent more than eight seasons with Milwaukee, and was the longest-serving Brewer. He batted .276 in 945 games with 154 homers and 508 R-B-I with two All-Star appearances. Hart missed all of this year after having surgery on both his knees. Hart said the designated hitter option in the American League could help give him a break when he needs it. He said he a lot of appreciation for Milwaukee, but the move to Seattle was best for him and his family. Melvin agreed that a player like Hart could get up to 30 extra games as a D-H, and the talent pool for National League teams is smaller because of it. Meanwhile, the Brewers continue to look for a more solid first baseman for 2014. For now, the best option appears to be Dodgers' free agent James Loney.
Aaron Rodgers is not the only Green Bay Packers' starter who's uncertain for Sunday's game at Dallas. Running back Eddie Lacy did not practice yesterday after he sprained his right ankle in last Sunday's home win over Atlanta. Coach Mike McCarthy said Lacy would continue a rehab today, and he might practice tomorrow. The rookie has accounted for almost two-thirds of Green Bay's rushing attempts this season with 887 yards and a team rookie-record seven touchdowns. McCarthy appears cautiously optimistic that Lacy can play against the Cowboys. If not, James Starks will get the start. The Packers also have Khalil Bell and fullback John Kuhn as backups. Rodgers is still waiting to be medically-cleared in the wake of his broken collarbone. Tight end Andrew Quarless said Rodgers got snaps in yesterday with the Packer first team. Cowboys' coach Jason Garrett says his team expects Rodgers to play. He's been out since November fourth. Also, inside linebacker Brad Jones sat out of yesterday's practice with a bad ankle, and inside linebacker Jamari Lattimore missed the workout with a knee injury.
The Milwaukee Bucks got crushed by the San Antonio Spurs 109-to-77 last night at the B-M-O Harris Bradley Center. Tim Duncan outscored Milwaukee's starting five, 21-to-19. The veteran forward also had 16 rebounds in only 24 minutes, as six Spurs scored in double figures. San Antonio jumped out to a 9-nothing lead and never looked back as the Bucks couldn't match their opponents' energy level. The Spurs led by 16 after the first quarter. The Bucks got to within 11 midway through the second period, when Miroslav Raduljica made a pair of free throws. But the Spurs then pulled away with a 10-0 run. They led by as many as 38 later on, as they out-rebounded Milwaukee 52-37. Jeff Ayres had a season-high 10 rebounds without even trying a shot in 25 minutes. The Bucks were led by their rookies. Nate Wolters had 18 points and seven assists. Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 15. San Antonio is now 9-and-1 against Eastern Conference opponents. The Bucks have dropped four-of-six, falling to 5-and-17 on the year. They'll host Chicago tomorrow night.
The Wisconsin men's basketball team improved to 11-and-0 last night after pounding U-W Milwaukee 78-to-52 in Madison. The fourth-ranked Badgers did most of their damage in the first half, as they went up by 20 at the break and sailed from there. Ben Brust made his first six shots, four from three-point range, and he ended up 18 points on the night. Wisconsin hit 9-of-13 from downtown in the first half, but only hit 1-of-13 from beyond-the-arc in the second half. Still, the Badgers shot 51-percent for the game, and out-rebounded U-W-M 35-26. The Panthers committed 19 turnovers, which the Badgers turned into 28 points. Matt Tiby scored 19 and Kyle Kelm had 17 for U-W Milwaukee, which fell to 9-and-3 overall and 1-and-30 lifetime against the Badgers. Frank Kaminsky scored 16 for Wisconsin. Sam Dekker had 12 points, eight rebounds, and a season-high six assists, as the Badgers matched the school's record start of 11-and-0 set by coach Stu Jackson's team in 1993-and-'94. The Badgers can break that mark on Saturday with a home win over Eastern Kentucky.
The U-W Milwaukee women lost at Indiana last night, 87-to-68. The Hoosiers improved to 10-and-0, as freshman guard Larryn Brooks made 7-of-9 from three-point range and scored a total of 27 points. Indiana jumped out to a 6-nothing lead and never trailed after that. They were up by 13 at halftime, and as many as 24 later on. The Panthers cut the margin to 11 but faltered down the stretch. Indiana out-shot U-W-M 50-to-43 percent, and out-rebounded the Panthers 39-30. Emily Decorah scored a season-high 15 points off the bench for Milwaukee, including four three-pointers. Avyanna Young also scored 15, as U-W-M fell to 2-and-7. The Panthers will host Marquette on Sunday.
Brookfield native Kenny Harrison has been inducted into the National Track-and-Field Hall of Fame. He won Olympic gold in the triple jump in 1996 in Atlanta, with a record jump of 59-feet four-inches against a headwind of four-tenths mile an hour. It remains the U-S and Olympic record, and Harrison says it's the only record ever to be broken against the wind. Today, Harrison is the C-E-O and lead trainer at Signature Athletics in San Francisco. One of his clients is Packers' quarterback Aaron Rodgers, whom Harrison calls "the nicest person on earth."