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Auto Racing

Romanowski swan dives into NASCAR’s Swan Racing

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Former NFL linebacker Bill Romanowski signed on as a minority owner of NASCAR team Swan Racing, and his health supplement company will sponsor the No. 30 Toyota this season.

Romanowski’s Nutrition53 supplement will be the primary sponsor for 10 races this year and will be an associate sponsor on the car driven by David Stremme in the remaining 26 events.

Romanowski was a two-time Pro Bowl selection and played in five Super Bowls during his stints with Denver and San Francisco. He joins a NASCAR team that’s been overhauled since Brandon Davis purchased the assets last year. Davis has added personnel and vowed to run the car in every race and not “start-and-park.”

Nutrition53 is a line of supplemental health drinks and vitamins.

College Football

C-USA splits 6 new teams evenly among 2 divisions

IRVING, Texas – The six new schools in Conference USA will be split evenly among the two divisions next football season.

Conference USA, which is expanding to 14 members even with four leaving for the Big East in 2013, announced its football schedule and new division alignments Wednesday.

League newcomers Louisiana Tech, North Texas and Texas-San Antonio will be in the West with returning teams Tulsa, Rice, UTEP and Tulane.

Middle Tennessee and Florida Atlantic, who will depart the Sun Belt early to join C-USA next season, will be with newcomer FIU in the East along with returnees East Carolina, Marshall, UAB and Southern Miss. SMU, Houston, UCF and Memphis are leaving.

Each team will play eight conference games, including two teams from the opposite division.

Cycling

Rasmussen admits to doping, then he quits the sport

HERNING, Denmark – Danish rider Michael Rasmussen admitted Thursday he took performance-enhancing drugs for more than a decade, the latest cyclist to acknowledge doping since Lance Armstrong’s confession this month.

Rasmussen, a climbing specialist who won stage victories in the Tour de France and Spanish Vuelta, said he took testosterone and growth hormones and had blood transfusions from 1998 to 2010 in an effort to boost his performance.

The 38-year-old Dane said he would quit the sport and cooperate with anti-doping agencies.

Soccer

Beckham joins French Club – for free, for charity

PARIS – In a lucrative career that has earned him millions around the world, David Beckham now joined Paris Saint-Germain. He’s pledged to play for free and donate his salary to a children’s charity.

The former England captain rejected other offers and signed a five-month contract for the French club Thursday in a stunning move that came as the transfer window was starting to close.

No details were given on how much the 37-year-old star will be paid or which charity will get the money.

Tennis

Isner, Querrey and Bryans will lead USA against Brazil

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – John Isner will play the No. 1 singles spot for the U.S. team against Brazil in the first round of Davis Cup World Group matches.

Team captain Jim Courier made the announcement Thursday at the draw ceremony.

Sam Querrey will play No. 2 singles. Mike and Bob Bryan will be the doubles team.

The Brazilian team will consist of singles players Thomaz Bellucci and Thiago Alves and the doubles team of Marcelo Melo and Bruno Soares. Querrey will play Bellucci in today’s opening match followed by the Isner-Alves match.

The three-day event will begin today at the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena.

Associated Press

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