MONDAY SPORTS: Clemson remains #3; Clemson/Syracuse time announced; Kiffin fired
*Clemson did not move in the new AP and Coaches’ polls released Sunday. The Tigers remain 3rd and 4th respectively in the rankings after their win over Wake Forest. South Carolina, coming off a narrow victory at Central Florida, dropped one spot in the AP ranking to 13th but moved up one spot in the Coaches poll to 12th. Alabama and Oregon remain #1 and #2 in both polls.
*The ACC Sunday announced the game times and TV outlets for the four October 5th games that were not assigned last week. Clemson and Syracuse will kickoff at 3:30 PM from the Carrier Dome and will be televised regionally on ABC and to the rest of the nation on ESPN2. Clemson has opened as a 13.5 point favorite.
*Southern California fired coach Lane Kiffin early Sunday morning, ending the coaches tenure a few hours after the Trojans lost 62-41 at Arizona State. Ed Orgeron was picked as USC’s interim head coach by Athletic Director Pat Haden, who fired Kiffin at the airport following the Trojan’s flight home.
*In the NFL Sunday, the New England Patriots held on to defeat the Atlanta Falcons 30-23 at the Georgia Dome, despite a huge performance from Falcon tight-end Tony Gonzalez. The Patriots are now 4-0 for the third time under coach Bill Belechek. The previous two times were both seasons in which they appeared in The Super Bowl.
*Monday Night Football game on ESPN:
Miami Dolphins at New Orleans Saints (8:30 p.m. ET)
*The Clemson men’s basketball team opened practice on Sunday, the first of 30 prior to the Tigers’ 2013-14 regular season opener on Nov. 8 against Stetson. Thirteen of Clemson’s 14 players dressed and competed in practice, with the lone exception being freshman guard Patrick Rooks, who is out for the season with a hip injury. Head Coach Brad Brownell took his team through a workout that lasted just over two hours on Sunday at Littlejohn Coliseum.
*In the majors on Sunday, the Braves finished off the regular season with their 96th win, their most in nine years. Evan Gattis had a two-run homer among his three hits, Elliot Johnson drove in five runs and the NL East champions beat the Philadelphia Phillies 12-5.
*The Miami Marlins’ Henderson Alvarez threw a no-hitter on the last day of the regular season Sunday against the Detroit Tigers, and he clinched it in an usual way, completing the feat while in the on-deck circle. It was the bottom of the ninth inning with the bases loaded, two outs, and the score 0-0 when the Marlins scored the lone and winning run of the game on a Luke Putkonen wild pitch, and the 23-year-old Alvarez began to celebrate with his teammates in the on-deck circle. Alvarez needed the run for his no-hitter to be official, because only complete games of nine or more innings with no hits count as no-hitters. The no-hitter ended a dismal season for the Marlins, who had the worst record in the National League at 62-100. Alvarez’ no-hitter was the third this season; the other two were pitched by the Cincinnati Reds’ Homer Bailey and Tim Lincecum of the San Francisco Giants.
*The Texas Rangers and Tampa Bay Rays will play a one-game tiebreaker Monday night for the second American League wild-card after both won their games on the last day of the regular season Sunday to end in a tie for the spot. The winner of their game Monday in Texas will play the Cleveland Indians — who clinched the first wild-card berth Sunday — in another one-game matchup. The winner of that contest will face the Boston Red Sox in the AL Division Series.
*The Olympic flame began its journey Sunday from Greece to Sochi, Russia, site of the 2014 Winter Olympics games next February. The flame was lit using reflected sun’s rays in a ceremony held in the ruins of the Temple of Hera and carried out by actresses dressed as ancient priestesses. The flame was first passed to 18-year-old Greek alpine skier Ioannis Antoniou, who then handed it to Russian NHL star Alex Ovechkin. The torch’s journeys before arriving in Sochi will include being carried in a hot-air balloon, on a dog sled and in a nuclear-powered ice breaker, and even up to the International Space Station.