Sports Briefs

Published 1:30 am Friday, August 26, 2011

Pryor, Raiders OK 4-year contact

NAPA, Calif. (AP) — Quarterback Terrelle Pryor agreed to a four-year contract with the Oakland Raiders on Thursday, three days after being picked in the third round of the NFL supplemental draft.

A person familiar with the negotiations confirmed the deal to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because it had not been announced by the team. ESPN first reported the announcement.

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Pryor can start practicing with Oakland on Friday. The Raiders play their third exhibition game on Sunday against New Orleans. The Raiders then will have three practices before the exhibition finale at Seattle on Sept. 2.

After that game, Pryor will be ineligible to practice with the Raiders until serving a five-game suspension.

Witnesses: victim threw first punch

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Two employees of the bar where LSU quarterback Jordan Jefferson and three teammates are accused of injuring four people in a parking lot brawl say one of the victims “threw the first punch.”

Shady’s Bar general manager John Peak and door manager Jordan Neldare told The Associated Press Thursday versions of the fight that differ from a police report.

The report includes a statement from alleged victim Andrew Lowery, who says he was punched and kicked repeatedly by LSU players after coming to the aid of a man pulled from a pickup truck. Another witness says she saw Jefferson kick Lowery in the face.

The bar employees say Lowery threw the first punch, “that’s one thing we do know.”

Flannagan’s death ruled suicide

BALTIMORE (AP) — Former Cy Young award winner Mike Flanagan died of a self-inflicted shotgun wound to the head, the Maryland medical examiner ruled Thursday.

A police investigation revealed that the 59-year-old pitcher was upset about financial issues. He left no note.

Flanagan’s body was found Wednesday afternoon about 250 feet behind his home. An investigation showed he was home alone when he took his life.

SMU wants to join Big 12 Conference

DALLAS (AP) — SMU wants to join an automatic qualifying BCS conference and believes the Big 12 would be the best fit.

SMU athletic director Steve Orsini says he’s had informal talks with Big 12 officials for some time to inform them of the school’s improvements and growth.

He says it’s been SMU’s goal to join a BCS conference since it wasn’t included in the Southwest Conference’s merger with the Big 8. With Texas A&M looking to leave the Big 12 for the SEC, he felt it was time to promote SMU, currently in Conference USA, as a possible replacement.

The Big 12’s BCS status is the biggest draw for the Mustangs, but Orsini says getting to rekindle regional rivalries from the Southwest Conference also makes the Big 12 an attractive option.