BC-AP Sports Preview Digest

BC-AP Sports Preview Digest

Some of the sports stories The Associated Press is covering Monday. A full Sports Digest will be sent about 3 p.m. All times EST:

- NEW ORLEANS - The lights went out at the Super Bowl for 34 minutes, and now the league, the Superdome and an array of New Orleans officials confront a question: What exactly happened?

- NEW ORLEANS - The mayor of New Orleans says he doesn't think the power failure during the Super Bowl will hurt his city's chances of getting the NFL's championship game in 2018.

- NEW ORLEANS - Here's a scenario worth considering: What would have happened at the Super Bowl if the lights didn't come back on?

- NEW ORLEANS - Super Bowl MVP Joe Flacco and Ravens coach John Harbaugh bask in their NFL title after a night that did not include a whole lot of sleep.

- NEW ORLEANS - The 49ers were almost there. Now they must move forward with the hope of keeping their team together. A key concern is the future of backup quarterback Alex Smith.

- NEW YORK - The Ravens' victory over the 49ers sets a record for highest overnight ratings in Super Bowl history. An estimate of how many people watched is expected later in the day.

- The AP releases its latest Top 25 rankings in men's and women's college basketball, with the Indiana men set to jump to No. 1 after their victory over Michigan.

- INDIANAPOLIS - The Pacers can pull into a tie with the Bulls for the Central Division lead with a victory over Chicago. The Bulls are without injured starters Joakim Noah and Kirk Hinrich. Game starts 7 p.m.

- SCHLADMING, Austria - Skiing's world championships begin Tuesday, with Lindsey Vonn among the favorites in the super-G. She is only now regaining speed after a midseason break because of health problems.

- THE HAGUE, Netherlands - A match-fixing investigation uncovers more than 680 suspicious matches, including World Cup and European Championship qualifiers and two Champions League games, European police say.

NFL announces locations for 2019, 2020 and 2021 Super Bowls


NFL announces locations for 2019, 2020 and 2021 Super Bowls

The NFL has decided on the locations of the 2019, 2020 and 2021 Super Bowls. The vote took place at the NFL owners meetings in Charlotte on Tuesday. 

Atlanta will host Super Bowl LIII in 2019, while South Florida (Miami) will get the event in 2020 and Los Angeles will host in 2021. 

The cities chosen each included new or upgraded stadiums in their pitches to the league. 

Atlanta will be home to the new Mercedes-Benz Stadium, opening in 2017. 

Miami's stadium (Sun Life Stadium from 2010-2016) is undergoing a $400 million renovation that will include an open-air canopy to provide shade for 92 percent of seats, according to Sports Illustrated. Construction should be complete before the 2017 season. 

And Los Angeles will boast a new 300-acre, campus-style stadium housing the Rams and potentially a second team. The $2.6 billion project will be the most expensive sports arena in the world, reports CNN, and should be ready before the 2019 NFL season. 

AFC North: Bengals' Eifert expected to miss three months due to surgery


AFC North: Bengals' Eifert expected to miss three months due to surgery

Bengals Pro Bowl tight end Tyler Eifert will undergo ankle surgery, according to multiple reports.

Estimates varied on when Eifert would return, but he was not expected to be back on the field until at least mid-August.

Eifert suffered his injury at the Pro Bowl, which he left wearing a walking boot.

His ankle has not responded to treatment as well as Eifert hoped, and he could not join his teammates for OTA’s this week.

A first-round pick in 2013 (21st overall), Eifert led all NFL tight ends with 13 touchdown catches last season, and had 52 catches overall for 615 yards. Still only 25 years old, Eifert has emerged as a major weapon for the Bengals, and they have already picked up his fifth-year option.

The priority for the Bengals is to have Eifert ready for Week 1 when they visit the Jets. Ryan Hewitt, Tyler Kroft, and C. J. Uzomah will see plenty of reps at tight end until Eifert returns.



NFL owners vote for modest changes to replay, shun overhaul


NFL owners vote for modest changes to replay, shun overhaul

The NFL made modest changes to replay rules Tuesday, but did not institute major changes that some teams, including the Ravens, had proposed in recent months.

Owners voted for changes that slightly increased situations where plays can be reviewed, and when officials can turn to the league office for help during games.

Situations subject to replay review, which were not before, include:

- Penalty enforcement

- Proper down

- Spot of a foul

- Status of game clock

Plays not reviewable in the past, that can now be reviewed, include:

- Where a ball in the air crosses the sideline.

- Whether a player was blocked into a loose ball.

- Advancement by a player after either a valid, or invalid, fair catch signal.

- Whether player impetus forced a ball to travel into the end zone.

The Ravens made a proposal in March that would have made all plays reviewable except for offensive and defensive holding, offensive and defensive pass interference, illegal contact, illegal use of hands, and whether a quarterback, receiver, or kicker had been hit illegally. The Patriots had previously proposed that all plays be made reviewable, but that has also been resisted by the owners and the competition committee.

Each team will still be given two replay challenges per game, and will be awarded a third challenge only if the first two are successful.