The supervisor is Vin Cherwoo, followed by Fred Lief at 9 a.m. The New York sports desk can be reached at 800 845-8450, ext. 1630. Sports Photos, ext. 1918; graphics, ext. 7636; agate, ext. 1635. AP stories, along with the photos that accompany them, also can be obtained from http://www.apexchange.com . Reruns are available from the Service Desk (800 838-4616) or your local AP bureau. All times EDT.
NEW YORK — A year ago at this time, Maria Sharapova was sitting out the U.S. Open, getting checked by doctors and having tests on the surgically repaired right shoulder that has troubled her off and on. On Wednesday, Sharapova rallied to beat 95th-ranked Alexandra Dulgheru of Romania 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 in the second round. No. 19 Venus Williams was among the seeded winners, while No. 4 Agnieszka Radwanska and No. 21 Sloane Stephens lost. In the men's draw, No. 3 Stan Wawrinka advanced to the third round, while No. 6 Tomas Berdych and No. 7 Grigor Dimitrov reached the second round. By Howard Fendrich. SENT: 773 words.
AP POLL-KIDS SPORTS
Nearly half of parents say they're not comfortable letting their child play football amid growing uncertainty about the long-term impact of concussions, according to an Associated Press-GfK poll. A majority, however, say they haven't prevented their child from playing the game they love. By Kurt Voigt. UPCOMING: 745 words by 4 a.m.
— AP Poll-Kids Sports-Method. UPCOMING: 222 words by 4 a.m.
CLEVELAND — Josh Gordon's wait is over, and so is his 2014 season. Now the star wide receiver's career is in peril. The Browns learned Wednesday that Gordon's indefinite suspension by the NFL has been upheld and he will miss at least 16 games for another violation of the league's substance abuse policy. A repeat drug offender, Gordon had appealed the penalty, hoping it would be reduced so he could play this season. The NFL, though, came down hard on Gordon, who must now pay the price for stepping out of bounds. By Tom Withers. SENT: 930 words.
LOS ANGELES — Josh Shaw has been an exemplary teammate and a valuable leader at Southern California. His fellow Trojans say they had no reason to doubt him when he explained his two sprained ankles with an elaborate story about saving his nephew from drowning. Shaw's tale turned out to be pure fiction, and USC is left wondering exactly what drove a team captain to such deception. After Shaw confessed Wednesday that he lied to school officials about how he injured his ankles last weekend, the school swiftly suspended him from all team activities and acknowledged his heroic tale was "a complete fabrication." By Greg Beacham. UPCOMING: 990 words by 4 a.m.
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. — North Carolina coach Larry Fedora said Wednesday the team has suspended four players for this weekend's season opener, a day after a report of an alleged hazing altercation that left a redshirt freshman walk-on receiver with a possible concussion. Fedora said the four players were suspended for a "violation of team policy," but offered no other details about what rules were broken. The players suspended were sophomores Des Lawrence and Brian Walker, redshirt freshman Donnie Miles and true freshman M.J. Stewart. By Aaron Beard. SENT: 362 words.
LOS ANGELES — Doc Rivers is staying with the Los Angeles Clippers for another five years. In Steve Ballmer's first big move since taking over as the new owner, he gave Rivers a contract extension through the 2018-19 season. Ballmer said Wednesday it was one of his top priorities to ensure that Rivers remains as the long-term leader of the team. By Beth Harris. SENT: 330 words.
NEW YORK — U.S. Open fans can't seem to get enough of practice. That's right, practice. In a new feature at Flushing Meadows this year, elevated stands loom over five practice courts and allow fans to see stars like Roger Federer and Serena Williams groove their strokes, tinker with strategy and sometimes bicker with coaches. By James Martinez. UPCOMING: 740 words by 4 a.m.
— NEW YORK — TEN--US Open-What to Watch. By Howard Fendrich. SENT: 562 words.
— NEW YORK — TEN--US Open-Wawrinka. By Howard Fendrich. SENT: 561 words.
— NEW YORK — TEN--US Open-VWilliams. By Howard Fendrich. SENT: 440 words.
— NEW YORK — TEN--US Open-SJohnson Retires. By Rachel Cohen. SENT: 364 words.
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The change made by the Kansas City Chiefs a few years ago was subtle — one word, really — yet it ushered a pronounced change in the way the franchise viewed its most important fans. Season-ticket holders became known as "season-ticket members." Suddenly, the entire paradigm shifted. No longer were Chiefs fans merely customers, buying a ticket, attending a game and then heading home afterward. And by offering those members exclusive gifts and experiences, the Chiefs have rebuilt their season-ticket rolls at a time when many franchises are having a hard time filling stadiums. By Dave Skretta. UPCOMING: 925 words by 4 a.m.
FBN--WATCH THOSE HANDS
Continue reading this story on the...