Hall of Famer Rick Pitino was named basketball coach at Iona College on Saturday.

Pitino coached at Louisville from 2001-17 before being fired in a pay-for-play scandal and had been coaching in Greece. He replaces Tim Cluess, who resigned Friday after 10 years and six NCAA Tournament appearances due to health concerns.

“My passion in basketball started in New York and will end there at Iona College,” Pitino said in a statement released by the school. “Tim Cluess has done a spectacular job creating success and a winning spirit. At Iona, I will work with the same passion, hunger and drive that I’ve had for over 40 years.”

The 67-year-old Pitino has a 770-271 overall record in college and became the first coach to take three different schools to the Final Four. He won national titles at Louisville (2013) and Kentucky (1996).

MEN’S BASKETBALL: Syracuse freshman Brycen Goodine is transferring.

The 6-foot-3 guard from New Bedford, Massachusetts, played in 23 of the Orange’s 32 games. He averaged just under nine minutes and 1.9 points.

WOMEN’S BASKETBALL: UConn forward Megan Walker has decided to forgo her senior season and enter the WNBA draft.

The decision came a day after UConn Coach Geno Auriemma told reporters he had no reason to believe that anyone on his team with remaining eligibility would not return next season.


RETIREMENT: Martin Fourcade finished his career as one of the greatest biathletes by winning his last race, in Kontiolahti, Finland, on the 10th anniversary of his first pursuit win – in the same place.

France’s most successful Winter Olympian with five gold medals announced his retirement then won his final race in Kontiolahti, Finland, narrowly missing out on an eighth World Cup sprint title.

With perfect symmetry, Fourcade’s 83rd and final individual win was 10 years to the day where he got his first individual win.


IDITAROD: As Iditarod mushers drove their dog teams across Alaska, race officials scrambled to make last minute changes prompted by concerns over the new coronavirus, including asking fans not to fly to Nome for the finish. Officials late Friday urged fans, especially those from out of state, to skip the finish this week. City officials in Nome followed most other Alaska cities in closing or limiting access to most public buildings in wake of the state’s first positive test, that of a man from outside the U.S. The man was tested Thursday at an Anchorage hospital after earlier arriving in the city on a private cargo plane.


PARIS-NICE RACE: German cyclist Maximilian Schachmann won the Paris-Nice race, in Valdeblore-La Colmaine, France in a rare case of a sporting event still going ahead amid the coronavirus pandemic. While France’s soccer and rugby leagues scrapped their matches indefinitely on a hectic Friday organizers maintained one of cycling’s biggest stage races. They only shortened it by scrapping Sunday’s traditional last stage into the southern city of Nice.

– News service report

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