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Sports Briefs

Parlor owner sentenced to prison

COLUMBUS (AP) — A federal judge has handed down a 3-year sentence to the tattoo parlor owner whose purchase of Ohio State memorabilia triggered a far-reaching football scandal.

But U.S. District Court Judge Gregory Frost found Wednesday that Edward Rife didn’t have the ability to pay a $10,000 fine.

The 31-year-old Rife never faced any charges connected to the football scandal, but he says he received death threats over his involvement and saw his family’s finances destroyed.

Rife pleaded guilty in June to drug trafficking and money laundering charges unrelated to the scandal.

Federal authorities investigating Rife’s role in a marijuana distribution plot discovered he’d been buying Ohio State memorabilia from football players or giving them discounts on tattoos for the items.

That discovery triggered coach Jim Tressel’s resignation and several player suspensions.

Maualuga expects to return next week

CINCINNATI (AP) — Bengals middle linebacker Rey Maualuga (mow-uh-LOO’-guh) hopes to miss only one more game with a severely sprained left ankle.

Maualuga had to sit out a win over Indianapolis before the team’s bye week. He had a cast removed from the ankle on Monday and is walking around in a protective boot this week.

He doesn’t expect to play at Seattle on Sunday, but thinks he might be ready for a game the following week in Tennessee. That would be his best-case scenario. If the injury lingers any longer, he would miss a pivotal AFC North game in Cincinnati on Nov. 13 against the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Browns’ receivers sit out practice

BEREA (AP) — Browns starting wide receiver Mohamed Massaquoi and tight end Benjamin Watson are not practicing because of concussions.

Both players were hurt in Cleveland’s win on Sunday over Seattle. Coach Pat Shurmur said Massaquoi and Watson, who have a combined 38 receptions, both attended team meetings Tuesday and neither have yet been ruled out of this week’s game in San Francisco.

Also, running back Peyton Hillis practiced after missing Sunday’s game with a hamstring injury. Shurmur said Hillis is still the team’s feature back.

Hillis said he won’t talk about his contract situation any more this season and focus stricktly on football.

“I would rather not talk about a contract the rest of the year,” Hillis said. “There’s no sense in it. It’s in the past and I want to move forward from here on out. I’ve got to play and that’s the bottom line.”

Linebacker Scott Fujita is back “and full go” after sitting out last week’s game with a concussion.

Shurmur said kicker Phil Dawson, who made two field goals beyond 50 yards last week despite a bruised thigh, and starting right guard Shawn Lauvao (knee) will be limited in practice.

Irish lose Lewis-Moore for rest of season

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Notre Dame defensive end Kapron Lewis-Moore will miss the rest of the season after detaching the medial collateral ligament in his right knee.

Irish coach Brian Kelly on Tuesday likened the injury to an ACL repair. Lewis-Moore will have surgery, and be out 4-6 months.

Lewis-Moore was hurt during Saturday’s 31-17 loss to Southern California. Kelly says the Irish staff initially thought the senior had injured his ankle because he still had stability in his knee. But an MRI on Monday revealed the detached ligament.

Notre Dame plays Navy on Saturday.

Democrats want hearing on HGH tests

WASHINGTON (AP) — Three Democratic House members are urging the House Energy and Commerce Committee to hold hearings on the impasse between the NFL and players union on testing for human growth hormone.

California Rep. Henry Waxman, the top Democrat on the committee, and two others made the request in a letter Tuesday to chairman Fred Upton, a Michigan Republican. The Associated Press obtained a copy before its official release.

The NFL and the players agreed to begin blood testing for HGH as part of their new collective bargaining agreement reached in late July — but only if the union agreed to the methods. The union has delayed implementing the test, asking for more scientific data to prove it is reliable.

The Democrats called the delay “a cause for concern.”

Favre visits National Guard troops

HATTIESBURG, Miss. (AP) — Former NFL quarterback Brett Favre has paid a surprise visit to Ohio National Guard soldiers who are preparing to deploy to Afghanistan in the next few days.

Favre spoke to and took photos with the 500 soldiers during an hour-long visit Tuesday at the Camp Shelby Training Center south of Hattiesburg, Miss. The soldiers make up five units of Task Force 1st Battalion, 134th Field Artillery.

“I’ve had the opportunity to be part of some great things, but to be invited and asked to come speak to these guys, it’s a special feeling. For what these guys and these ladies do, words can’t really express our gratitude towards them,” Favre said before talking to the soldiers.

“To be here and put a smile on their face … If it seems so minor to be able to come in and say hello and maybe lift people up and offer your time, but it’s a special thing to me. I’m more honored.”

The Hattiesburg American reports Favre talked about teamwork, dedication to a goal, team chemistry and working as a unit.

Favre retired this fall after a 20-year career.

“It really was motivating,” said Spc. Edward Hughes, holding a football that Favre had autographed. “He has a lot of experience with teamwork and team building and I really took it to heart. I know it’s going to help as we go forward.”