AE preseason hoop polls released

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — The University of Maine men’s basketball team was picked to finish eighth and the women’s basketball team has been selected to finish sixth in the America East preseason polls announced Wednesday.

In the men’s poll, Vermont was picked first with six first-place votes and 64 points. The Catamounts were followed by Stony Brook and (3 first-place votes, 58 points), defending champion Albany (49), Hartford (44), New Hampshire (31), UMBC (28) and Binghamton (24) were picked ahead of the Black Bears (20) and league newcomer UMass Lowell (8).

In the women’s voting, defending champion Albany was named the preseason favorite with eight first-place votes and 64 points. The Great Danes were followed by Hartford (54 points), Stony Brook (48), New Hampshire (46), Vermont (30), Maine (27), Maryland Baltimore County (24), Binghamton (23) and UMass Lowell (8).

Sea Dogs announce hirings

PORTLAND — The Portland Sea Dogs have announced the hiring of four new front-office employees for the 2014 season. Joining the Sea Dogs full-time staff are four native Mainers: ticket office manager Dennis Carter and account executives Ashley Montgomery, Lindsey Oliver and Justin Phillips.

The additions bring the Sea Dogs full-time year-round staff up to 11 employees.

Patriots’ Mayo placed on IR

New England Patriots inside linebacker Jerod Mayo, the team’s leading tackler, is out for the rest of the 2013 season with a torn pectoral muscle. Mayo was placed on injured reserve Wednesday.

Brandon Spikes, a fellow Florida product, and rookie Jamie Collins could become the starters in the 4-3 defense with Spikes in the middle. Dont’a Hightower would remain at strong-side linebacker.

To fill Mayo’s roster spot, the Patriots re-signed defensive tackle Andre Neblett.

Cuban cleared of insider trading

Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban was found not guilty by jurors Wednesday that he did not commit insider-trading when he sold most of the shares in an Internet company he was a majority shareholder of in 2004, according to media reports.

The victory over the federal government in federal district court in Dallas should end a lengthy battle for Cuban, who had been accused by the Securities and Exchange Commission that Cuban committed a number of violations of SEC law, including trading on nonpublic information to sell nearly $8 million of stock on, a Canadian-based search engine, in 2004.

Had he been found guilty, Cuban would have been forced to pay $750,000 in losses plus penalties.

British driver Edwards dies in crash

British racing driver Sean Edwards has been killed in a crash at the Queensland Raceway in Australia.

The 26-year-old, the son of former Formula One driver Guy Edwards, died on Tuesday when the Porsche in which he was a passenger instructing a 20-year-old male, slammed into a wall and caught fire.

Edwards, who was leading the drivers’ championship in the 2013 Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup season with one race to go, was taking part in a private training day, according to news reports.

Fryar charged in alleged scam

Former New England Patriots Pro Bowl wide receiver Irving Fryar was indicted on charges of conspiracy in theft for a mortgage fraud scam, the New Jersey state’s Attorney General office announced Wednesday.

Fryer and his mother, Allene McGhee, allegedly attempted to steal nearly $700,000 by applying for five home equity loans on her house during a five-day period in 2009.

Fryar, 51, is pastor of New Jerusalem House of God in Mount Holly, N.J., and a football coach at Robbinsville High School. The school district suspended Fryer without pay.

No sanction for Burns’ hit

San Jose Sharks forward Brent Burns will not face a disciplinary hearing from the NHL for Tuesday’s hit on Brenden Morrow of the St. Louis Blues, a league spokesman said Wednesday.

Burns’ hit knocked Morrow out of the game at 16:07 of the first period and received a boarding minor penalty. However, Morrow returned to play more than five minutes in the second period and three minutes in the third.

Trauma, drowning killed sailor

SAN FRANCISCO — British Olympic champion Andrew Simpson died from “blunt trauma with drowning” after the Swedish America’s Cup craft he was sailing capsized and broke apart in San Francisco Bay, according to a medical-examiner’s report released on Tuesday.

Simpson, 36, a two-time Olympic medalist and father of two young boys, suffered multiple blows to his head and body in the May 9 accident involving the 72-foot Artemis Racing catamaran, the report said.

Simpson was wearing a helmet, wetsuit, flotation device and shoes when he was trapped for approximately 10 minutes beneath the yacht.

Cowboys release veteran Ratliff

The Dallas Cowboys released veteran defensive tackle Jay Ratliff under a failed physical designation on Wednesday.

Ratliff, 32, had not played this year. He was placed on the physically unable to perform list before the season with sports hernia and hamstring injuries but was eligible to be activated from the PUP this week.

The 2005 seventh-round draft pick went to four Pro Bowls during his eight-year career with the Cowboys. Last year, he was limited to six games and had 25 tackles with no sacks.

Bucs’ Nicks has surgery on infected foot

Tampa Bay Buccaneers guard Carl Nicks underwent surgery Tuesday night on the left foot after a recurrence of a MRSA infection, the team announced.

Nicks missed Sunday’s game against the Philadelphia Eagles after the serious infection was diagnosed.

Nicks and Buccaneers kicker Lawrence Tynes first picked up the infection, which is resistant to some antibiotics, during training camp in August. Rookie cornerback Johnathan Banks was diagnosed last week but played against the Eagles.

Sooner suspended after indecent exposure

Oklahoma suspended wide receiver Trey Metoyer indefinitely after it was reported Tuesday that the sophomore faces two felony counts of indecent exposure from two separate incidents.

Metoyer, a former five-star recruit, could receive a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and a $20,000 fine. The Tulsa World and cited Cleveland County District Court documents in their report of the charges against Metoyer.

According to, Metoyer exposed himself to a woman in two separate incidents.