Mill Creek's Murdock named Coach of the Year

Mill Creek fastpitch softball coach Kelly Murdock was selected as the Georgia Women's Intersports Network Coach of the Year at Wednesday night's National Girls and Women in Sports Day banquet. She was recognized for the honor Thursday morning at the Georgia Capitol by Gov. Sonny


Murdock led the Hawks to back-to-back Region 7-AAAAA tournament championships in 2005 and 2006. Mill Creek was third in Class AAAAA last season.

Locals nominated for Atlanta Sports Awards

Duluth grad and Atlanta Braves catcher Brian McCann, former Duluth resident Regina Jaquess, Collins Hill senior Maya Moore and the Peachtree Ridge football team are nominated for Atlanta Sports Awards.

McCann is up for professional athlete of the year, Jaquess is nominated for amateur athlete of the year, Moore is up for high school athlete of the year and Peachtree Ridge's football squad is one of the finalists for team of the year.

The winners will be announced Feb. 15 at a black-tie event at the Fox Theatre.

Peachtree Ridge's O'Dell signs soccer scholarship

Peachtree Ridge soccer player Evan O'Dell became the school's first Division I soccer signee when he signed with South Carolina on Wednesday.

"I really liked the campus and the soccer program is really up to my standards," said O'Dell, who chose the Gamecocks over Clemson and Furman.

O'Dell, who plays defense for the Lions, is a three-year starter and was team captain the last two years.

O'Dell is the son of Janice and Rick O'Dell.

Eagles' Munson signs with Shorter softball

Collins Hill senior pitcher Libby Munson has signed a letter of intent to continue her softball career at Shorter College in Rome. She is the daughter of Valerie and Paul Munson.

Munson, a four-year letter winner, pitched Collins Hill to the Class AAAAA state title as a junior and to a AAAAA runner-up finish as a senior.

Parkview girls win JV basketball title

The Parkview girls junior varsity basketball team won the Region 8-AAAAA tournament last weekend with a 53-34 victory over South Gwinnett in the finals.

The Panthers, who also defeated Grayson and Brookwood in the region tourney, were led by MVP Chanale Buchanan and All-Tourney selection Mia Antione. Other members of the championship team are: Makia Clarke, Jamie Dennis, Cally Hannon, Enjolie Johnson, Diane Martin, Morgan Mitchell, Chelsea Ramsey, Sarah Smith and Jennifer Wormley.


Auburn's Blackmon not enrolled this semester

AUBURN, Ala. - Auburn linebacker Tray Blackmon is not enrolled in school this semester and will miss spring practice, coach Tommy Tuberville said.

Tuberville said he expects Blackmon, who was twice suspended last season, to rejoin the team in June. The former Parade All-American is ''taking care of personal problems,'' the coach said.

''We are expecting Tray to be back with his teammates the first of June,'' he said Wednesday. ''It's not up to me. It's up to him.''

Tuberville said Blackmon could remain academically eligible through summer school. He missed the first six games of last season under suspension and was also held out of the Cotton Bowl for another unspecified violation of team rules.

Blackmon finished with 15 tackles as a redshirt freshman, recovering three fumbles and forcing another.

Tuberville said Blackmon's absence doesn't mean his future with the team is in doubt.

''He's just got to make up a lot of ground,'' Tuberville said. ''That's all in (his) court. We've had a couple (players) do that before. They've just got to take care of business.''

Tuberville said tailback former Parkview running back Brad Lester, also suspended for the Cotton Bowl, will participate in spring practice.

Landis agrees not to ride again in France this year

PARIS - Floyd Landis will skip the Tour de France - and all races in France this year - as part of an agreement with French doping authorities in a case that could strip him of cycling's most prestigious title.

Last year's Tour champion had hip-replacement surgery 41⁄2 months ago and was unlikely to have competed in this year's Tour. He agreed Thursday not to race again in France until 2008, and in return the French anti-doping agency postponed its decision on whether to suspend him from competing in France for a maximum of two years because of a positive doping test.

Cowboys replace Parcells with Wade Phillips

IRVING, Texas - Wade Phillips was hired Thursday to coach the Dallas Cowboys, providing the club with an experienced replacement for Bill Parcells and someone well-versed in the 3-4 defense.

The seventh coach in team history, Phillips is only the second to arrive in Dallas with previous head coaching experience. The other was Parcells, who retired Jan. 22 after four seasons with the Cowboys.

Phillips, defensive coordinator at San Diego the past three seasons, has a 48-42 head coaching record over three seasons with Buffalo, two with Denver and season-ending interim stints with New Orleans and Atlanta. The 59-year-old son of longtime Houston Oilers coach Bum Phillips has been in the NFL for 30 of the last 31 seasons.

- From staff, wire reports