Sports

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(Updated at 10:40 a.m. to include Livestrong Foundation's CEO comments on The Today Show.)

The Livestrong Foundation—the Austin-based non-profit that Lance Armstrong founded to help people battling cancer—has been a major part of the conversation in the fallout surrounding the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency's report on Armstrong's doping. Now, it's also a player after Armstrong's confession.

The Livestrong Foundation released a statement following the first part of Armstrong's interview with Oprah Winfrey.

The statement says employees are disappointed that Armstrong misled them during and after his cycling career. But it also says employees accept Armstrong’s apology from earlier this week and want to move on.

Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Lance Armstrong admitted to using performance-enhancing drugs in an interview with Oprah Winfrey last night. For many Austinites, the much-anticipated confession was worth a special viewing appointment. And for some, it even called for a watch party.

A few dozen watch party attendees crowded around picnic tables on the patio and at the u-shaped wood bar at Little Woodrow’s on Sixth Street as they waited for the tell-all from the Texas native on his decade-long doping cover up.

(We updated the top of this post at 10:40 p.m. ET.)

Disgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong publicly confessed to cheating on all his seven Tour de France victories.

In an interview with Oprah Winfrey, the second part of which airs Friday, Armstrong said he was never afraid of getting caught and attributed his actions to a "ruthless desire to win."

Disgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong's confession to doping isn't just a matter of passing interest to sports fans, it has the potential to be pivotal new evidence in a raft of legal matters that have swirled around the cycling star for years.

Armstrong already has lost his battle with the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, which detailed "the most sophisticated, professionalized and successful doping program" in sports when it announced a lifetime ban of the cyclist last October.

You may have heard that banned-for-life pro cyclist Lance Armstrong, in an interview with Oprah Winfrey, has admitted to doping.

You may have heard that he apologized (tearfully, reportedly) to employees at Livestrong, the foundation he started in 1997 after surviving testicular cancer.

You may have heard that he reached out to make nice with people in the cycling world whom just months ago he was branding as liars and worse, and that he may pay back some bike team sponsor money.

Feel manipulated yet?

Has Lance Confessed?

Jan 15, 2013
twitter.com/lancearmstrong

The 'will he or won't he' may be answered before Oprah Winfrey's much-anticipated interview with the cyclist airs Jan. 17. The Associated Press is reporting that Lance Armstrong has confessed to Oprah about using performance-enhancing drugs.

The AP cites "a person familiar with the situation." The newsgathering organization says "the person spoke on condition of anonymity because the interview is to be broadcast Thursday on Winfrey's OWN network."

Armstrong has also reportedly apologized to the Livestrong Foundation staff—the Austin-based non-profit he started to support people fighting cancer.

Cycling superstar Lance Armstrong, who has been stripped of his many victories because anti-doping authorities say he used performance enhancing drugs throughout his career, has reportedly told the staff at his Livestrong cancer charity that he's sorry. But it's not clear at this hour exactly what it is he's supposedly apologized for.

Bobby Blanchard for KUT News

Before sitting down with an exclusive interview with Oprah Winfrey, Lance Armstrong reportedly apologized to the Livestrong staff today.

At least seven media trucks were parked outside of Armstrong’s house Monday morning, hoping to catch a glimpse of Oprah Winfrey. The talk-show host was expected to appear at Armstrong’s house sometime Monday for an exclusive interview with the former cycling champion. However, the Associated Press reported this afternoon that Armstrong was on his way to a hotel to tape the interview.

Winfrey photo flickr.com/vtkproductions; Armstrong photo Wikipedia user Haggisnl, bit.ly/WyMQEy

From his home in Austin, Lance Armstrong will speak with Oprah Winfrey for his first interview since having his seven Tour de France titles vacated.

It was a rough 2012 for Armstrong: He saw his wins vacated once he stopped fighting doping charges from the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency last summer. USADA then issued a scathing report detailing alleged doping throughout Armstrong’s career. The fallout lead to Armstrong’s formal separation from the cancer organization he founded, Livestrong.

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Good morning. This Monday should be relatively mild, with a high near 60. But beginning Tuesday, a strong storm system is expected to blow into the Austin area. The National Weather Service says rainfall totals of three to four inches are in the forecast, with up to six inches in isolated spots. 

Let us know what sort of rains you experience: email news@kut.org or tweet pics and messages to KUTnews.

Armstong’s end game: We noted late Friday evening a report from The New York Times that Lance Armstrong, the seven time Tour de France winner who saw his wins erased in a massive doping scandal, was considering admitting to use of performance-enhancing drugs.

It's well known that routine physical activity benefits both body and mind. And there are no age limits. Both children and adults can reap big benefits.

Now a study published in Clinical Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science, explores whether certain factors may help to explain the value of daily physical activity for adolescents' mental health.

Flickr user Princess Stand in the Rain, bit.ly/10ZwQ6h

Two of UT’s biggest rivals - past and present - go head-to-head tonight.

The ninth-ranked Aggies face off against the No. 11 Oklahoma Sooners in the Cotton Bowl Classic this evening. It’s a battle for conference pride. Oklahoma will try to score a victory for the Big 12 over the SEC.

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett (R), says the NCAA badly overreached itself when it imposed punitive financial sanctions on Penn State over the handling of sexual predator and former Penn State assistant football coach, Jerry Sandusky. Corbett is filing a federal anti-trust lawsuit against the collegiate athletic association, saying it ignored its own disciplinary rules in its rush to castigate the Pennsylvania university.

Daniel Bayer via flickr.com/aspensnowmass

A British newspaper is suing Lance Armstrong for about $1.5 million over a settlement it reached with the  cyclist in 2004.

The Sunday Times paid Armstrong almost half a million dollars after he accused the paper of libel when it printed allegations that he used performance enhancing drugs.

twitter.com/lancearmstrong

Here’s one Austinite that’s probably ready for 2012 to end: Lance Armstrong.

Cyclist, cancer survivor and seven-time Tour de France winner Armstrong found himself enveloped by controversy this year that ultimately lead to the erasure of his wins.

In February, federal prosecutors announced they had dropped a two-year investigation into whether Armstrong participated in doping. But later that summer, the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA), a non-governmental watchdog of doping in sports, announced it was bringing its own charges of doping against Armstrong.

Greg Echlin, KUT News

The Texas Longhorns have advanced to the women’s volleyball championship game for the third time in four years.  The only thing standing in the way of a possible national title is Penn State. 

The Lady Lions has defeated the Longhorns in their last two final four appearances. Texas coach Jerritt Elliott hopes this will be different than their last trip to the title game in Tampa three years ago, a heartbreaking five-set loss against Penn State.

The four NFL players who were fined and given multi-game suspensions for their alleged parts in the New Orleans Saints' "bountygate" scheme that paid bonuses for injuring opposing players have had their punishments vacated, the league says.

Texas A&M Athletics

The Heisman Memorial Trophy Award, a 13.5-inch tall bronze trophy weighing 25 pounds, has been awarded to the most outstanding player in college football since 1935.

The Heisman, probably the most recognized individual award in all of sports, has had many suitors this college football season – but few as electrifying as the finalists: Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel, Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o and Kansas State quarterback Collin Klein.

Of the three finalists Manziel – a.k.a. Johnny Football – is the favorite to win college football's most prestigious award on Saturday night in Manhattan. If Manziel does win he would be the first freshman to win the Heisman and the first Texas A&M player since halfback John David Crow won the school's only Heisman in 1957.

Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

The Texas Longhorns will play Oregon State in the Alamo Bowl in San Antonio this post-season.

The Longhorns have played the Oregon State Beavers twice. UT won both times. Oregon State does have a better record and a higher rank this season. The game is Dec. 29.

Some expected the Longhorns to head to the Cotton Bowl. Instead, that’s where UT’s Big 12 rival Oklahoma will play former Big 12 rival Texas A&M on Jan. 4.

The Sooners lost out on a chance to play in a BCS bowl when Mid-American Conference champ Northern Illinois moved up in the rankings and earned an automatic bid.

MJ&M Facebook Page

An actor, a musician and UT’s head football coach are joining forces to help kids in need.

Mack Brown, Jack Ingram and Matthew McConaughey are putting together an event they’re calling “Mack, Jack & McConaughey" or "MJ&M."

There's not a lot of information right now—even the event's website says "additional details to be announced."

What we do know is that MJ&M will be a two-day, celebrity-filled special event held in Austin in April to raise funds for various children’s charities. The only charity already listed by name as one that will be supported is McConaughey’s just keep livin Foundation.

Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Just two years after the idea was first floated, Formula 1 is a go in Austin.

The U.S. Grand Prix at Elroy, Texas’ Circuit of the Americas track is this Sunday, Nov. 16.  But a full weekend of practice sessions, qualifying races and more will entertain an estimated 300,000 attendees over the entire weekend.

Meanwhile, local officials and regular citizens alike are prepping for visitors. City management has activated its emergency area command to monitor traffic and public safety in conjunction with additional state and federal authorities. Regular Austinites are facing a choice: batten down the hatches and avoid the madness, or embrace it. Even without F1 tickets, the latter should be easy with events like Austin Fan Fest closing downtown streets and offering free entertainment.

flickr.com/altera

The organization Lance Armstrong founded to help those battling cancer has dropped his name.

A media representative for the organization confirmed to KUT News that the Lance Armstrong Foundation is now officially the Livestrong Foundation—a name that many already knew it by.

Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Ready or not, Formula 1 has arrived.

As Austin readies for an onslaught of some 100,000 visitors, we’ve heard lots about traffic planshelicopter permits, and even counter-terrorism measures.  But what about the actual race: the cars, the drivers and the sport itself? Confused? KUT News has assembled a primer on this weekend’s Formula 1 race.

  • What Sort of Cars Are These?

The FIA Formula One World Championship is the highest class of single-seater auto racing that is authorized by the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile.

The "formula" in Formula 1 refers to a set of guidelines that each racing car must adhere to. The results are state-of-the-art.

flickr.com/wallyg

The University of Texas at Austin community is invited to attend a public memorial service for Darrell K Royal today.

The longtime football coach passed away last Wednesday. He was 88 years-old.

The memorial service is being held at the Frank Erwin Center. The doors will open at 10:30 and the event will begin at noon.

University officials expect traffic in the area will be congested.

twitter.com/lancearmstrong

Lance Armstrong has fully stepped down from Livestrong, the cancer-fighting charity he helped create.

Armstrong stepped down as Livestrong chairman in in mid-October. He apparently resigned from the board on Nov. 4, although news outlets didn’t catch up with that news until this weekend.

The Washington Post spoke with a Livestrong official. He told the Post the move was necessary to preserve Livestrong's viability:

In a statement, new board chairman Jeff Garvey said Armstrong resigned from the board to spare the organization any negative effects resulting from the controversy surrounding his cycling career.

Austin Auction

An auction of Coach Darrell K Royal’s sports memorabilia, personal collections and historic artifacts is happening this Sunday.

The event had been planned for months but takes on new meaning after the longtime University of Texas at Austin football coach died on Wednesday. He was 88 years-old.

For fans that no longer have the opportunity to meet Coach Royal, it’s a chance for them to find a certain closeness to him.

“Before this even happened, Edith, Coach Royal’s wife Edith Royal, who is of equal importance, made the statement that she hoped that Darrells’s fans would be the ones to own these things now. She’s cherished them for a lifetime. And that was her wish that Darrell’s fans would come out and be able to share the memories by owning a piece of that history that they created," Chris Featherston, co-owner of Austin Auction, says.

texassports.com

Longtime University of Texas football coach Darrell Royal passed away this morning. He was 88-years-old.

Royal coached the Longhorns from 1957 to 1976 and led the team to three National Championships. Royal also served as athletic director from 1962 to 1979.

The University honored Royal in 1996 by renaming the football stadium, Darrell K Royal-Memorial Stadium. During the announcement, UT System chancellor William Cunningham said, “No individual has contributed more to athletics at UT-Austin than Darrell Royal. He is a living legend.”

Royal was the all-time winningest coach of the Longhorns.  KUT spoke with Royal's wife, Edith, last month. She said Royal enjoyed attending UT football games long after he retired from coaching the team.

A friend of the Royal family told KUT News that plans for his memorial services are underway. The LBJ Presidential Library has set up a memorial page for Royal with photos and a phone conversation between Royal and President Lyndon Baines Johnson. 

After the news of Royal's passing broke this morning, fans used Twitter to express their reactions and condolences:

Richard Justice, an MLB.com correspondent (@richardjustice): "RIP Darrell Royal.  Man of integrity and humor, intimidating and kind, absolutely brilliant with people."

Brian Jones (@BJ_CFB), a former UT football player and current football analyst for CBS Sports: "Thoughts and prayers to the Darrell Royal family and Longhorn Nation!  We lost a great one!"

Cole Constien (@ColeConstien): "Thank you for the memories Darrell Royal.  You have a place in every true sports fan's heart.  Rest in peace."

Yvette (@YLoTexas): "Rest in peace Coach Darrell Royal.  A great man, champion and Texan.  The Eyes of Texas shed a tear today.  Hook 'em."

Jeff Howe (@JeffHowe247), a football reporter for 247Sports.com:"Somber start to the day with the passing of Darrell Royla at age 88.  He's responsible for why so many cheer for the Longhorns."

Here's a statement from Governor Rick Perry on the passing of Darrell Royal:

“Darrell Royal was a coaching icon and the face of football in the Lone Star State for a generation of Texans. His legacy can be counted in national championships, but also in his unending devotion to his university and in the Darrell K Royal Research Fund for Alzheimer’s Disease. Anita and I join Texans everywhere in mourning his loss. Our thoughts and prayers are with his beloved wife, Edith, son, Mack, and his extended family and friends.”

Current UT Football Head Coach Mack Brown also shared his thoughts:

"Today is a very sad day. I lost a wonderful friend, a mentor, a confidant and my hero. College football lost maybe its best ever and the world lost a great man. I can hardly put in words how much Coach Royal means to me and all that he has done for me and my family. I wouldn't even be at Texas without Coach. His council and friendship meant a lot to me before I came to Texas, but it's been my guiding light for my 15 years here.

"Coach gave so much more to the State of Texas and college football than he took away. He forgot more football than most of us will ever know, including me. His impact on the game, the coaches and players, the community and the millions of lives he touched, is insurmountable. He will be missed in so many ways.

The World Anti-Doping Agency announced Friday that it won't fight the sanctions imposed against American cyclist Lance Armstrong.

KUHF

A Hardin County Judge is expected to rule today on whether to allow a group of high school cheerleaders to continue to display Bible verses at football games.

The Kountze High School cheerleaders are seeking a temporary injunction after Kountze Independent School District officials told the cheerleaders they could no longer use scripture on banners. An atheist group complained about the displays.

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott says he’ll defend the East Texas cheerleaders.

flickr.com/deltamike

The City of Houston has been selected as one of two finalists to host Super Bowl LI in February 2017.

At the NFL’s Fall Meeting, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announced that San Francisco and South Florida will duke it out for the opportunity to host the NFL’s 50th Super Bowl, Super Bowl L, in 2016. Goodell says the losing city will compete with Houston for the chance to host Super Bowl LI.

NFL owners will vote on the two Super Bowl sites during league meetings in Boston next May.

Houston’s bid is being lead by the Texans, the Greater Houston Convention and Visitor Bureau, the Harris County – Sports Authority and Reliant Park.

Texans president Jamey Rootes says Houston should feel good about their chances to host the Super Bowl in 2017.

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