FOOTBALL

Ken Riley, the former Cincinnati Bengals standout who was head coach and athletic director at alma mater Florida A&M, died Sunday. He was 72.

The school announced the death, saying Riley died in his hometown of Bartow. A cause of death was not released.

Riley played 15 seasons for the Bengals as a defensive back, with 65 career interceptions for 596 yards and five touchdowns – all franchise records. The interceptions rank fifth in NFL history. He also recovered 18 fumbles.

Before his NFL career, Riley was a four-year starter at quarterback for Florida A&M.

Riley, who was African American, was chosen in the sixth round of the 1969 NFL draft by the Bengals, who decided to convert him to cornerback. At the time, black starting quarterbacks in the NFL were all but unheard of.

He retired in 1983 and spent two seasons as an assistant with the Green Bay Packers before taking over as coach at Florida A&M, where he went 48-39-2 from 1986-93. He won two Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference titles and was a two-time MEAC coach of the year.

John Zook, who teamed with Hall of Famer Claude Humphrey to give the Atlanta Falcons a dynamic combination at defensive end in the 1970s, died at age 72 after a long battle with cancer.

Initially a fourth-round pick by the Los Angeles Rams out of Kansas, Zook wound up in Atlanta after a pair of trades, first to the Eagles, then to the Falcons.

Zook was with Atlanta from 1969-75, lining up on the right while Humphrey held down the left side. The team has scant success, with only two winning seasons and no playoff appearances during that time, but the duo was recognized as one of the team’s few strong suits.

Zook never missed a game during his tenure with the Falcons, starting 97 of 98 contests. He made his only Pro Bowl appearance in 1973, joining Humphrey in the all-star game.

TRACK AND FIELD

SUSPENSION: Salwa Eid Naser was already being investigated for missing three doping tests when she raced to an upset win in the 400 meters at the 2019 world championships in Qatar.

The Nigeria-born sprinter, who represents Bahrain, surged past Olympic champion Shaunae Miller-Uibo of the Bahamas to win in 48.14 seconds, the fastest time since 1985.

The Athletics Integrity Unit, which oversees drug testing and disciplinary cases in track, said Sunday that Naser racked up a fourth whereabouts failure in January.

AIU records show she wasn’t charged and provisionally suspended until this week. The AIU statement didn’t explain the reason for the delay.

Three whereabouts violations within 12 months can lead to a suspension if the athletes can’t justify why they weren’t available for testing.

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