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Sports news briefs
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Off-field issues for Manziel cloud Texas A&M camp
: HOUSTON (AP) — Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin says the university is gathering facts after a report that quarterback Johnny Manziel was paid for signing hundreds of autographs in January.

Speaking to the media Monday before the Aggies open camp, Sumlin says he learned of the ESPN report Sunday. ESPN says the NCAA is investigating whether the Heisman Trophy winner was paid for the autographs, which could potentially violate its amateurism rules and put his eligibility in question.

Sumlin said he would not speculate whether Manziel will be his starter when the season begins Aug. 31 against Rice.

He also said starting defensive tackle Kirby Ennis, who was arrested in February on a weapons charge, will be suspended for the Rice game.


Sprint Car driver dies after crash at Pa. track
: ABBOTTSTOWN, Pa. (AP) — A veteran Sprint Car driver has died from injuries suffered during a qualifying race at Lincoln Speedway in central Pennsylvania.

The York County coroner’s office says 63-year-old Kramer Williamson was pronounced dead at York Hospital at about 1:15 p.m. Sunday. He had suffered serious injuries during a crash that happened Saturday night during the United Racing Company 358/360 Sprint Car Challenge in Abbottstown.

United Racing Company co-owner John Zimmerman says they’re mourning the loss of a popular and accomplished driver.

Officials say Williamson was inducted into the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame in 2008 and had been racing for more than 40 years. He shared the 1971 rookie of the year title at Williams Grove Speedway in Mechanicsburg.

The last driver fatality at Lincoln was in 19


Dempsey joins Seattle in prime of his career
: SEATTLE (AP) — For the past few seasons playing in England, even as he participated in a Europa League final with Fulham and was on the verge of a Champions League berth at Tottenham, Clint Dempsey felt the pull to come back to America grow stronger.

He didn’t want to be an aging player on the back side of his career when he finally made the decision to return to Major League Soccer.

That pull was at the heart of Dempsey’s decision to have his representatives reach out to MLS in late July and start the process that was finalized over the weekend when Dempsey signed with the Seattle Sounders as their newest designated player.

Dempsey was formally introduced on Monday. He said the Sounders “moved mountains” to make his transfer from Tottenham to Seattle a reality.


IceArizona completes purchase of Coyotes
: GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) — The Phoenix Coyotes finally have an owner.

IceArizona completed its purchase of the franchise from the NHL on Monday and received approval from the league’s Board of Governors, ending a four-year ownership saga in the desert.

Completion of the sale triggers a $225 million lease agreement for Arena reached last month by the city of Glendale and Renaissance Sports and Entertainment, managing partner of IceArizona,

RSE, headed by George Gosbee and Anthony LeBlanc, completed the deal after numerous suitors came forward and then pulled away since former owner Jerry Moyes took the franchise into bankruptcy in 2009.

The Coyotes have been run by the NHL the past four years, making the playoffs three times.