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Sparano still in limbo in Miami

Sat., Jan. 8, 2011

Dolphins reschedule news conference

The Miami Dolphins’ strange week took another bizarre turn Friday, leaving coach Tony Sparano’s status still in doubt.

The Dolphins scheduled a late-afternoon news conference to announce the retention of Sparano, but the session was postponed 20 minutes before the scheduled start. Nearly two hours later, the Dolphins rescheduled the session for today.

A spokesman gave no reason for the postponement.

The Dolphins’ cross-country courtship of Stanford coach Jim Harbaugh ended late Thursday, and he was hired Friday to coach the San Francisco 49ers. With Harbaugh no longer an option, the Dolphins were expected to retain Sparano, who has one year left on his contract.

Sparano met Friday at the team complex with owner Stephen Ross and general manager Jeff Ireland, but there was no announcement regarding who will coach the Dolphins in 2011.

The news conference promised to be an entertaining exercise in damage control. While in limbo this week, Sparano reported to work daily, even as Ross and Ireland flew to California to get spurned by Harbaugh.

Conducting a coaching search when the Dolphins still had a coach threatened to undermine Sparano, whose status was already shaky because of his team’s late-season meltdown. The sequence of events also raised questions about the state of his relationship with Ireland, which dates back eight years when both were with the Dallas Cowboys.

Titans keep Fisher

Bud Adams has thought it over, and the Tennessee Titans’ owner has decided he isn’t ready just yet to part with Jeff Fisher.

Adams’ decision means Fisher, the NFL’s longest-tenured coach, will be back for a 17th season. Fisher wasn’t available to comment because he was traveling to Arizona to watch his son Trent play for Auburn in the BCS championship game. But he said in a statement that he and Adams had a good talk about the team.

He is under contract for 2011 for $6.5 million, but changes to his coaching staff are expected as part of his return for another season.

Judge mum on case

A Colorado judge said she wouldn’t release a court document detailing sexual assault allegations against Denver Broncos cornerback Perrish Cox because the investigation is ongoing.

Douglas County Judge Susanna Meissner-Cutler also said the document contains medical reports and statements by people interviewed by police, along with unspecified information that wouldn’t be allowed at a possible trial.

Cox was arrested Dec. 9 on sexual assault allegations and is free on $50,000 bail. Authorities have remained tightlipped about the accusations, and Cox has not been charged.

Around the league

Minnesota Vikings defensive tackle Kevin Williams has been added to the NFC Pro Bowl team as an injury replacement for Detroit Lions rookie Ndamukong Suh. … The NFL fined Indianapolis Colts linebacker Gary Brackett $35,000 for his hit on Tennessee Titans long snapper Ken Amato in last Sunday’s game. … Baltimore linebacker Terrell Suggs was fined $15,000 for striking Bengals wide receiver Jerome Simpson in the face after a play. … New England nose tackle Vince Wilfork was fined $10,000 for roughing the passer on Miami QB Chad Henne. … The Cleveland Browns interviewed St. Louis Rams offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur for their coaching position. … Bill “Tiger” Johnson, former head coach for the Cincinnati Bengals, died at his home in Fort Myers, Fla., after a long illness, the team announced. He was 84.


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