Soccer star Daniel Sturridge says stolen dog returned

LOS ANGELES — European soccer star Daniel Sturridge has been reunited with his beloved dog, a day after reporting it stolen from his Los Angeles home.

Sturridge said in an Instagram posting Wednesday that he and some friends retrieved his Pomeranian, Lucci, from a South Los Angeles home late Tuesday night.

He added: “Absolutely delighted. Can’t believe it!”

KCBS-TV says Sturridge told police he didn’t believe the people who returned the dog were involved in the original burglary and that no money changed hands.

Sturridge said his house was broken into on Monday night. He posted surveillance video showing a shattered glass door and three men in hoodies walking through the home.

No arrests have been made.

Sturridge most recently played for Liverpool of the Premier League before being released.

NCAA charges NC State with 4 men’s hoops violations

RALEIGH, N.C. — The NCAA has charged North Carolina State with four violations, accusing a former assistant coach of providing payments and benefits connected to the recruitment of one-and-done basketball player Dennis Smith Jr.

The school said Wednesday that its notice of allegations was received Tuesday, and now has 90 days to respond.

The notice includes four serious charges, with two that are potential top-level charges. The NCAA alleges that from 2014-17, former assistant Orlando Early provided Smith and his associates approximately $46,700 in impermissible inducements and benefits — including $40,000 that a government witness testified he delivered to Early intended for Smith’s family in 2015.

The NCAA also said former coach Mark Gottfried, now coaching at Cal State Northridge, was “presumed responsible” and “did not demonstrate” that he monitored Early for compliance. It also accuses Gottfried of failing to monitor the program’s pass list, leading to a total 164 impermissible complimentary admissions to games.

The notice indicates the NCAA’s hearing panel could levy show-cause penalties against both Gottfried and Early.

NFL adds 2 former players among 6 officials for ‘19 season

NEW YORK — Two former NFL players are among the six new officials for the upcoming NFL season.

Field judge Nate Jones joins the NFL officiating staff from the Pac-12, following an eight-year pro career as a defensive back. Umpire Terry Killens was a linebacker during his seven NFL seasons before officiating in the American Athletic Conference.

The other first-year officials are side judges Dave Hawkshaw and Jimmy Russell, down judge Patrick Holt and line judge Tripp Sutter.

Referees Walt Coleman, John Parry and Pete Morelli retired after last season. Line judge Jeff Bergman, entering his 28th NFL season, is now the longest-serving official.

The roster also includes two other former NFL players. Back judge Steve Freeman was a defensive back for 13 seasons and down judge Phil McKinnely was an offensive lineman for seven years.

Freeman and his son, side judge Brad Freeman, are the only set of father-son officials active in the NFL. Referees Shawn Hochuli and Alex Kemp and line judge Walt Coleman IV also are the sons of former NFL referees. 

Additionally, three sets of brothers — Allen and Rusty Baynes, Jeff and Jerry Bergman, and Carl, Dino and Perry Paganelli — are on the 2019 roster.

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