PHILADELPHIA — When N. Jeremi Duru, a lawyer and expert in sports law, advocated for the Rooney Rule after it was implemented across the league, he described it as an “extremely controversial” time.

While serving as counsel for the Fritz Pollard Alliance, an organization comprised of coaches, scouts, and executives of color in the NFL, Duru and the rest of the group wanted more opportunities offered to minorities.

Copyright 2022 Tribune Content Agency.

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A 4-0 start put Kansas atop the others receiving votes pile in The Associated Press college football poll, 41 points behind No. 25 Kansas State. The Jayhawks have not been ranked since mid-October 2009, a dry spell of nearly 13 years that is currently the longest among Power Five conference programs. Getting stuck behind the Sunflower State rivalry must have been particularly annoying to Kansas fans. Kansas’ resume has a similar look to No. 24 Pittsburgh’s. Reality Check says advantage KU. The voters are going to make the Jayhawks do more.

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The Top 25 teams in The Associated Press college football poll, with first-place votes in parentheses, records through Sep. 25, total points based on 25 points for a first-place vote through one point for a 25th-place vote, and previous ranking:

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Seven-time NASCAR champion Jimmie Johnson tells The Associated Press that he is retiring from full-time racing and will turn his focus toward spending time with family. He figures his future schedule will include no more than 10 bucket-list events. The 47-year-old says he has no idea what his racing schedule will look like, or whether he'll run any IndyCar races next season. He wants to do the 24 Hours of Le Mans with NASCAR and Hendrick Motorsports, and has interest in “The Double” of the Indianapolis 500 and Coca-Cola 600 on the same day. But he also wants to travel with his family and perhaps spend a year living abroad.

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Shohei Ohtani vs. Aaron Judge for the American League MVP figures to be the most hotly debated postseason award this season. Judge is closing in on Roger Maris’ AL record of 61 homers and might also win the Triple Crown. He’s done it while playing quite a bit of center field for a team that’s nearing a division title. Ohtani is pitching better than he did when he was the unanimous MVP last year. He may even be putting himself in the Cy Young conversation — to go along with his 34 homers.

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The 334 laps at Texas Motor Speedway provided quite a tumultuous start to the NASCAR playoff round of 12. There were a lot of tire issues that contributed to a track-record 16 cautions. There was also a 56-minute red flag for lightning, and a record 36 lead changes among 19 drivers. Chase Elliott entered as the points leader, and was ahead in the race around the midway part when he had hard contact and a fiery finish. Playoff contender Christopher Bell also got knocked out after a tire issue. And there were some bumping between William Byron and Denny Hamlin.

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Jimmy Garoppolo felt a little out of step in his first start of the season. A misstep that took him out of the back of the end zone for a safety only epitomized his problems. Even with tight end George Kittle back after missing the opening two games with a groin injury, the 49ers just couldn’t sustain any sort of rhythm in an 11-10 loss to Denver. They turned the ball over three times and went 1 of 10 on third-down conversions. It was a recipe to keep the Broncos hanging around until Russell Wilson led a game-winning drive, culminating with a short Melvin Gordon score.

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The NFL’s quarterback carousel may start spinning a bit faster. Mac Jones, Tua Tagovailoa and Josh Allen got banged-up Sunday. Justin Herbert and Jameis Winston played hurt. Already, Dak Prescott and Trey Lance have gone down. Backups, be ready. Jones’ leg injury appears most serious. The second-year pro hopped off the field late in the fourth quarter of New England’s 37-26 loss to Baltimore, and he appeared to be in extreme pain in photos showing him being assisted to the locker room. Backup quarterbacks are always one play away from entering the game. They have to be prepared.

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Steve Flesch birdied the 18th hole at Pebble Beach to win the Pure Insurance Championship for his second PGA Tour Champions victory of the season. Flesch birdied the first four holes and five on the front nine in a strong start, then stalled on the back. But he got the only birdie he needed on the par-5 finishing hole for a one-stroke victory over Ernie Els, Steven Alker and Paul Stankowski. Flesch closed with a 4-under 68 for a three-round total of 11-under 205 and earned $330,000. The 55-year-old won the Mitsubishi Electric Classic in May.

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Melvin Gordon scored from a yard out and Kareem Jackson recovered a fumble in the closing minutes Sunday night to secure Denver's 11-10 win over Jimmy Garoppolo and the San Francisco 49ers. Russell Wilson again struggled to get the Broncos offense humming. The Broncos went three-and-out nine times and Denver's only susteained drive was an 80-yarder over 12 plays that Gordon capped with his 1-yard TD. Garoppolo threw a touchdown pass and was intercepted in his first start in place of injured starter Trey Lance, who broke an ankle in Week 2.

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Georgia Tech's athletic association board has called a meeting for Monday and the future of football coach Geoff Collins appears to be in the balance. Georgia Tech spokesman Mike Flynn says the meeting will be open only to board members. There has been increased speculation about Collins’ status following three consecutive three-win seasons and a 1-3 start this month. Georgia Tech athletic director Todd Stansbury, who hired Collins, has also faced increased criticism. Collins is 10-28 in his fourth season at Georgia Tech. The Yellow Jackets lost 27-10 to UCF on Saturday.

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Brandon Nakashima earned his first ATP Tour victory in his hometown, beating friend and fellow Southern Californian Marcos Giron 6-4, 6-4 in the San Diego Open final. Nakashima, a 21-year-old who grew up in San Diego and trained extensively at the event’s site as a junior, clinched the opening set in only 30 minutes. The second set, filled with lengthy rallies, took nearly an hour. Giron, the No. 5 seed and former NCAA title winner from UCLA, wasn’t able to fend off Nakashima’s persistent ground strokes and well-placed serves. Nakashima had eight aces, six in the first set.