Friday's Sports In Brief

AP - Sports

PRO FOOTBALL

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) -- The Packers have ruled out Aaron Rodgers for Sunday's game against the Pittsburgh Steelers.

It will be Green Bay's seventh straight game without Rodgers since the franchise quarterback fractured his left collarbone during the first series of a 27-20 loss to the Bears on Nov. 4.

Backup Matt Flynn will make a fourth straight start. Coach Mike McCarthy said Friday that Rodgers had not yet received medical clearance.

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. (AP) - Adrian Peterson returned to practice for the Minnesota Vikings and is expected to play in Sunday's game at Cincinnati.

Peterson, the league's second-leading rusher, is listed as questionable for Minnesota (4-9-1). He missed last week's game after spraining his right foot a week earlier at Baltimore.

NEW YORK (AP) - Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Nick Foles was fined $10,000 by the NFL on Friday for an illegal peel-back block on Minnesota's Erin Henderson during the Eagles' loss Sunday.

Foles went down low at Henderson's knees, drawing a penalty and negating DeSean Jackson's 18-yard touchdown in the second quarter.

Arizona's Marcus Benard was fined $15,750 for roughing the passer on a hit on Tennessee's Ryan Fitzpatrick. Cardinals linebacker Daryl Washington was also docked $5,000 for unsportsmanlike conduct.

ISELTA PUEBLO, N.M. (AP) - Former Washington Redskins quarterback Joe Theismann says that when he wore the uniform as a player he did it to honor American Indians.

But Theismann said at the Isleta Resort & Casino at the Isleta Pueblo that he understands why some Native Americans want the name changed.

Theismann made his comments before his keynote address at a luncheon for Colorado State and Washington State, who face off Saturday in the New Mexico Bowl.

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COLLEGE BASKETBALL

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) - North Carolina said that it won't seek P.J. Hairston's reinstatement from the NCAA after the junior committed several rule violations. Hairston hasn't played all season while the school and NCAA worked to resolve eligibility questions stemming from the use of cars linked to a felon and party promoter earlier this year.

Coach Roy Williams said it was ''probably the most difficult and saddest thing I've ever gone through as a head coach.''

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OLYMPICS

WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama says the delegation he's sending to Russia for the Winter Olympics shows the United States doesn't make distinctions on the basis of sexual orientation.

Russia has come under fierce criticism for passing national laws banning ''gay propaganda.''

Obama's group heading to Sochi includes openly gay athletes Brian Boitano, Billie Jean King and Caitlin Cahow. He says the delegation ''speaks for itself,'' and they are world-class athletes who happen to be gay.

MOSCOW (AP) - A prominent Russian environmental activist who has reported on the environmental fallout from construction for the $51 billion 2014 Sochi Winter Games has been sentenced to three years in prison.

Yevgeny Vitishko and another activist were declared guilty of ''deliberate destruction of property'' and handed a three-year suspended prison sentence in 2012. The other activist, Suren Gazaryan, fled Russia.

The group Vitishko works for, the Environmental Watch on the North Caucasus, said a Russian court on Friday upheld prosecutors' demand to turn his suspended sentence into a prison term. He has 10 days to appeal.

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COLLEGE FOOTBALL

SALEM, Va. (AP) - Matt Behrendt threw four touchdown passes and Wisconsin-Whitewater's defense stymied Kevin Burke and Mount Union in a 52-14 victory in the Division III championship Friday night.

Behrendt hit Jake Kumerow and Tyler Huber for two touchdowns each, and Jordan Ratliffe ran for a pair of scores as the Warhawks (15-0) continued their domination of the series between the powerhouse programs in Division III.

FARGO, N.D. (AP) - Brock Jensen threw three touchdown passes and John Crockett ran for 196 yards to help North Dakota State overpower New Hampshire 52-14 in the Football Championship Subdivision semifinals.

The two-time national champion Bison (14-0) advanced to the FCS title game Jan. 4 in Frisco, Texas, against the winner of Saturday's semifinal between Eastern Washington and Towson.

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) - Notre Dame won't play a Big Ten opponent in 2015, the first time that's happened in more than 100 years, but the Fighting Irish will play a home game against Boston College at Fenway Park.

Notre Dame will play six ACC opponents in 2015, including a home game against Boston College at Fenway Park as part of its annual Shamrock Series.

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) - The Southeastern Conference fined four schools a combined $60,000 for violating league policies during the football season.

Mississippi State and Mississippi each received $25,000 fines.

Mississippi State was fined for violating the league's artificial noisemaker policy a second time. Ole Miss was fined for violating the league's field access policy a second time. Fans rushed the field following the school's 27-24 victory over LSU.

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BASEBALL

BALTIMORE (AP) - The Baltimore Orioles won't be closing a deal for All-Star closer Grant Balfour.

Days after reaching a preliminary agreement with the free agent pending a physical, the Orioles said that they weren't satisfied with the results of Balfour's exam.

Orioles executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette declined to say what specifically concerned him about Balfour, who turns 36 later this month. Balfour had shoulder and elbow surgeries that kept him out of the majors in 2005 and 2006.

NEW YORK (AP) - Kevin Youkilis is leaving the major leagues after an injury plagued season and heading to Japan.

The three-time All-Star agreed to a one-year contract with the Rakuten Golden Eagles of Japan's Pacific League, agent Joe Bick said.

Youkilis, a 34-year-old first baseman and third baseman, will have a $4 million base salary and can earn $1 million in bonuses - including some based on walks, a provision not allowed in major league contracts.

NEW YORK (AP) - Baltimore Orioles relief pitcher Troy Patton was suspended by Major League Baseball for the first 25 games of next season after a positive test for a banned amphetamine.

Patton told The Baltimore Sun that he took an Adderall pill four days before the season finished, trying to improve his short-term focus.

PHOENIX (AP) - The Arizona Diamondbacks promoted Mark Grace to hitting coach of Class A Hillsboro, 16 months after the former All-Star left his broadcasting job following a second DUI arrest.

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) - Former Tampa Bay designated hitter Luke Scott signed a $300,000, one-year contract with SK Wyvern in South Korea's baseball league.

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HOCKEY

GRAND FORKS, N.D. (AP) - Jocelyne Lamoureux took exception to Brianne Jenner's late run at Josephine Pucci, setting off fiery finale in the latest round in the U.S. women's hockey team's rivalry with Canada.

Lamoureux nailed Jenner with an illegal bodycheck and, seconds later, Lamoureux, sister Monique and U.S. teammates Hilary Knight, Gigi Marvin and Kacey Bellamy were brawling with Canada's Jenner, Melodie Daoust, Jocelyne Larocque, Meaghan Mikkelson and Vicki Bendus.

The referees handed out 10 fighting majors and a string of other infractions after the melee with 9 seconds to play in the Americans' 4-1 victory. The two teams also fought in October late in a game in Burlington, Vt., with all 10 skaters squaring off late in the third period. They had another big scrap in 2010.

DENVER (AP) - Prosecutors are dropping a domestic violence case against Colorado Avalanche goalie Semyon Varlamov because they have new information leading them to believe they couldn't win a conviction.

Varlamov was arrested and charged with misdemeanor assault after his girlfriend told police he knocked her down with a kick, stomped on her chest and dragged her by her hair at their apartment on Oct. 30.

Evgeniya Vavrinyukat also accused him of telling her that he would have beaten her more if they had been in Russia, where he is from, authorities said.

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SKIING

VAL GARDENA, Italy (AP) - Aksel Lund Svindal increased his overall World Cup lead by winning the Val Gardena super-G for the third time, while Ted Ligety skied off the course and Bode Miller finished eighth after colliding with the last gate.

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