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Associated Press

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COLLEGE HOOPS ROUNDUP: Georgia Tech rips The Citadel, 73-41, to continue its fast start

Off to its best start in years, Georgia Tech continues to impress following Saturday’s 32-point win against The Citadel. (ADDS: roundup items on Georgia beating USC and Florida State edging Charlotte on Saturday.)

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Holiday returns to help 76ers beat the Hawks, 99-80

The Hawks fall, 99-80, to a revamped 76ers team and Jrue Holiday, who returns after missing four games with a sprained foot.

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MLB/COLLEGE BASEBALL NOTEBOOK: Braves' minor-leaguer suspended 50 games; SEC Tournament undergoes changes

Atlanta Braves minor-league pitcher Billy Bullock is suspended 50 games Friday by Major League Baseball for a second failed drug test. (ADDS: item on SEC baseball tournament expanding to 12 teams, five days)

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Famed former U.S. Olympic running star Hamilton admits to shocking double life as escort

Suzy Hamilton — the most decorated female college track star in NCAA history and a three-time U.S. Olympian — dropped a bombshell Thursday: Despite being married and living and working as a private business owner in Wisconsin, she's also been moonlighting for the last year as a prostitute in Las Vegas.

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The next LeBron? Nation's No. 1 prep basketball recruit Parker picks Duke

Jabari Parker, a 6-foot-8 basketball star from Chicago's Simeon Career Academy, announces in front of a national TV audience that he is taking his talented to Duke.

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Defense says 'Bama fan accused of poisoning trees competent for trial

Harvey Updyke Jr., the Alabama fan accused of poisoning Auburn's famed oak trees, is fit to stand trial, his defense team says Thursday.

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Atlanta seeks to keep Detroit's Suh away from Ryan

Atlanta's last meeting with Detroit ended with finger-pointing over the alleged dirty play of Lions DT Ndamukong Suh.

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Falcons determined to avoid letdown against Lions

Needing just one win to clinch the No. 1 playoff seed in the NFC, the Falcons assure their fans they won't let their foot off the gas Saturday night in Detroit.

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COLLEGE FOOTBALL ROUNDUP: Auburn hires OL coach, signs top JUCO RB; Gators land record-setting N.C. quarterback

J.B. Grimes will come from Arkansas State and join Gus Malzahn's staff at Auburn.

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Ex-UGA star Stafford mired in worst slump of career

Matt Stafford left Athens early for the NFL in hopes of a shining pro career -- but there's no denying he's taken a step in the wrong direction after a dreadful 2012 season.

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Nebraska coach: Capital One Bowl vs. UGA could 'get ugly'

After getting embarrassed by Wisconsin in the Big Ten Championship game, Nebraska is hoping it doesn't play equally bad against Georgia in the Capital One Bowl.

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Thunder beat Hawks, win 12th straight game

Kevin Durant scores 41 points Wednesday to lead the streaking Thunder to a 100-92 win against the Hawks.

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Hawks outlast lowly Wizards in OT

Late Tuesday night, Atlanta goes into overtime with Washington, then prevails by five points.

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NFL NOTEBOOK: DeCoud emerging as Falcons' pickmaster

The Falcons' defense is having a great year, and to find out why, look no further than star safety Thomas DeCoud's team-leading six interceptions. (ADDS: Jets bench QB Sanchez — finally)

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Pitino, No. 5 Louisville set to face son, FIU

For the first time since Richard Pitino became the head coach at Florida International, he will face his father and legendary hoops coach Rick Pitino tonight.

Morning glory

In a rare 11:30 a.m. start Tuesday morning, Georgia takes on in-state foe Mercer and gets a much-needed win behind Kentavious Caldwell-Pope's game-high 17 points.

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Duke takes over top spot in AP poll

After Butler's upset against No. 1 Indiana on Saturday, Duke moves into the No. 1 spot in the AP's college men's basketball poll on Monday.

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Syracuse's Boeheim joins exclusive 900-win club

Jim Boeheim becomes the third Division I men's coach to reach 900 wins as No. 3 Syracuse beat Detroit 72-68 on Monday night in the Gotham Classic.

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Vick returns, but will stay on sidelines

Eagles QB Michael Vick returns to the team after missing five games with a concussion, but will remain on the sideline for the remainder of the season.

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Statement makers

The Falcons’ 34-0 win against the Giants might have quieted Atlanta’s critics, but the team still isn’t losing focus on its ultimate goal — making a deep playoff run under coach Mike Smith.

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Georgia Tech continues best start in 3 years

The Yellow Jackets rout lowly Alabama State, 75-41, for their largest win of the year and improve to 7-2 — their best start since beginning the 2009-10 season with a 13-2 record.

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Funerals begin a sad procession

Families and friends grieve as they bid they final goodbyes to loved ones lost in Friday’s shooting massacre.

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NFL ROUNDUP -- WEEK 15: Bailey’s OT field goal lifts Cowboys past Steelers

Brandon Carr’s interception and Dan Bailey’s 21-yard field goal in overtime give the Cowboys a win and move them into a three-way tie for first in the NFC East with New York and Washington.

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No. 6 Georgia women rout Lipscomb, 93-42

The No. 6 Georgia women’s basketball team stays undefeated Sunday with a 93-42 rout of Lipscomb.

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Newtown victims remembered around NFL

Two days after the tragic school shooting in Newtown, Conn., teams around the NFL remembered the victims with tributes and moments of silence.

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Giant shutout

The Falcons blank the defending Super Bowl champion Giants, 34-0, and now just need to win one of their final two games to clinch home-field advantage throughout the conference playoffs.

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Smith has off night as Hawks crushed by Warriors

Josh Smith has one of the worst game of his NBA career Saturday night as the Hawks fall at home to the red-hot Warriors, 115-93.

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GEORGIA HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL STATE TITLE ROUNDUP: Jefferson upsets Calhoun; Sandy Creek wins its third state title in four years; ECI crushes Dooly in the Class A public school state title game

Jefferson upsets Calhoun, 31-14, to win the Class AA state title while Class AAAA Sandy Creek wins its third state title in four years with a 45-10 rout against Ridgeland, and ECI rips Dooly, 47-7 to win the Class A public school state football title Saturday in the Georgia Dome.

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Branch back in New England, wants to retire a Patriot

Albany’s Deion Branch returned to the team he loves most this week, and he’s hoping to be a Patriot when he ends his career — whenever that day might be.

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COLLEGE FOOTBALL ROUNDUP: Penalties, late gaffes cost Georgia Southern in FCS semis; Mount Union wins D-III title --- again

Georgia Southern tallies a season-high in penalty yards --- including two inexplicable personal fouls late in the game by senior defensive leader Brent Russell --- and it costs the Eagles in a 23-20 loss to No. 1 seed North Dakota State late Friday night in Fargo, N.D.

COLLEGE NOTEBOOK: SEC won’t punish Alabama DE for hit on UGA QB Murray; UNC RB Bernard, the No. 1-rated NFL prospect, declares for draft

Alabama DE Quinton Dial's vicious hit on Georgia QB Aaron Murray in the conference title game won't be penalized by the SEC, allowing him to play in the BCS National Championship game against Notre Dame. (ADDS: item on Georgia Tech top hoops recruit Poole being cleared by NCAA on Friday).

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PREVIEW: VSU looks to deny Winston-Salem history in title game

Unbeaten Winston-Salem enters today’s Division II national title game in Florence, Ala., against Valdosta State looking to become the first historically black college to win it all.

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Hamilton agrees to $125M, 5-year deal with Angels

Josh Hamilton becomes the latest star to take his talents to Southern California when he signed a five-year, $125 million contract with the Angels on Thursday.

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After embarrassing loss at Carolina, Falcons’ defense looking for focus

Carolina scored 30 points and rushed for 195 yards last week against the Falcons, who are working to correct their mistakes before Sunday’s crucial game vs. the Giants.

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Southern runnin’

Georgia Southern’s FCS-best 409 rushing yards per game will meet a tough North Dakota State defense in today’s national semifinal.

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Div. II title game an escape for VSU QB Cochran

Saturday’s Division II title game comes just six days after Valdosta State QB Cayden Cochran watched his house go up in flames — the second time his family’s home has been destroyed in the past two years.

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UGA trying to regroup from SEC loss before bowl

With the Bulldogs calling the SEC title game their "toughest loss ever," UGA's Mark Richt tries to refocus his team to play Nebraska in the Capital One Bowl and forget about a missed chance to play for the BCS title.

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Hawks hold off late charge to beat Magic

The Hawks struggle to find the basket Wednesday, but the Magic are even more terrible on offense in Atlanta's 86-80 victory.

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Falcons' Turner didn't expect such a reduced role

Falcons running back Michael Turner says Wednesday that he is shocked to be taking a back seat in Atlanta's running back to second-year back Jacquizz Rodgers.

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Alabama QB McCarron to return for senior year

Junior A.J. McCarron, Alabama's national champion quarterback, declares Wednesday that he has decided to return for his senior season and wait on the NFL.

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NFL NOTEBOOK: Tagliabue to rule on bounty-gate today; RG3 has ACL sprain, not tear

The final ruling on the Saints' bounty scandal will come today after long deliberations by former NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue.

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Luke Bryan sweeps ACAs

Leesburg's Luke Bryan wins seven Academy of Country Music Awards.

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Rollin' the dice

Bobby Petrino, the shamed Arkansas coach with a very recent checkered past, is surprisingly given another chance at Division I football Monday when he’s hired by Western Kentucky.

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Messi scores 86th goal to break 40-year-old record

Arguably the most coveted record in pro soccer is passed Sunday by Barcelona’s Lionel Messi, who scores his 86th and 87th goals of the year to break the 40-year-old, single-season scoring mark.

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NFL ROUNDUP --- WEEK 14: Seattle embarrasses Arizona, 58-0; RG3 hurt in Redskins' OT win vs. Ravens

The Seahawks break all sorts of franchise records Sunday when their defense goes wild and crushes the Cardinals to the tune of 58-0

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Sin City stunner

Fighting for an unprecedented fourth time, Manny Pacquiao and Juan Manuel Marquez put on a show for the ages late Saturday night in Las Vegas, complete with four knock downs --- two by each fighter --- and one shocking, last-second, sixth-round knockout by Marquez.

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Hawks use 3rd-quarter rally to beat Memphis, 93-83

The Hawks score 20 unanswered points in the third quarter to pull away from Memphis on Saturday and win, 93-83

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Cowboy's Brent charged after teammate dies in auto accident

Cowboys defensive lineman Josh Brent is facing an intoxication manslaughter charge after a one-vehicle accident that killed teammate Jerry Brown, a member of the team’s practice squad.

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Rangers deal All-Star infielder Young to Phillies

Rangers infielder Michael Young, a seven-time All-Star, is traded to the Phillies on Saturday, ending a 12-year stay in Texas, where he set the team’s career record for hits with 2,230.

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VSU defeats Minnesota State, 35-19, in Division II semifinals

Valdosta State is headed to the Division II national championship after beating Minnesota State-Mankato in Saturday's semifinal, 35-19.