OU football: Tennessee DB Key Lawrence announces he will transfer to Sooners
Tennessee DB Lawrence announces transfer to OU
Another one of Tennessee football's former top recruits is transferring to Oklahoma.
Defensive back Key Lawrence announced on Twitter on Monday he intends to play for the Sooners. He entered the transfer portal Friday.
Former five-star offensive tackle Wanya Morris previously indicated he would be transferring to OU from UT on Jan. 18.
Lawrence is the sixth ex-UT player to announce their transfer from Tennessee to a Power 5 school this offseason: Morris (Oklahoma), quarterback J.T. Shrout (Colorado), outside linebacker Deandre Johnson (Miami), quarterback Jarrett Guarantano (Washington State) and running back Ty Chandler (North Carolina).
Lawrence, a Nashville Ensworth product, was the No. 81 prospect in the nation in the 247Sports Composite for the 2020 class. He picked the Vols over the likes of Alabama, Auburn, Clemson, Florida, Georgia, LSU and Ohio State.
The 6-foot-2, 200-pound Lawrence played in all 10 games as a freshman as a reserve defensive back and on special teams. He made eight tackles. Lawrence bounced around the secondary during the season. He worked at safety in the preseason, moved to cornerback early in the season and worked at nickelback.
Lawrence was the fifth Vol to enter the portal since Jeremy Pruitt was fired for cause Monday amid an investigation that revealed sweeping recruiting violations within the football program. Chancellor Donde Plowman called the investigation's findings "stunning" based on the amount of violations and number of people involved.
Arizona's Cactus League wants to delay season
The executive director of the Cactus League, which houses 15 teams in 10 Phoenix-area ballparks during spring training, has formally requested that Major League Baseball delay the start of the season by a month.
The proposal, sent by Cactus League director Bridget Binsbacher, was endorsed by all eight mayors and a tribal community in the Phoenix area in a letter that was sent Friday to Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred.
“In view of the current state of the pandemic in Maricopa County — with one of the nation’s highest infection rates — we believe it is wise to delay the start of spring training to allow for the COVID-19 situation to improve here," the letter, which was obtained by USA TODAY Sports, said. “This position is based on public data from the University of Washington’s Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, which projects a sharp decline in infections in Arizona by mid-March."
The letter comes in the aftermath of the Cactus League representatives and mayors meeting last week with MLB in preparation for spring training games. They discussed the possibility of selling tickets in a limited capacity, which will require pod seating and contactless transactions.
MLB officials side with the Cactus League and would also like to delay the start of spring training and the regular season by a month. Yet the Major League Baseball Players Association informed MLB that it does not want a delay unless players still are fully compensated for a 162-game season.
MLB first offered to delay the season by a month in December, but it was swiftly dismissed by the union. There have been no recent discussions on the matter.
RED SOX: The Boston Red Sox have turned to an old World Series foe to bolster their depth at second base and, possibly, elsewhere in the field. MLB.com reported Boston and former Dodgers infielder Kiké Hernandez agreed to a two-year, $14 million deal. The 29-year-old was a free agent for the first time and is the fourth player to be signed by the Red Sox this offseason, joining outfielder Hunter Renfroe and pitchers Martin Perez and Matt Andriese. Hernandez played Triple-A ball in Oklahoma City, once as a Houston Astros farmhand and another as a Dodgers prospect.
YANKEES: The New York Yankees made a rare trade with the rival Red Sox, sending struggling reliever Adam Ottavino to Boston on Monday along with minor league right-hander Frank German for a player to be named or cash. As part of the trade, the Yankees agreed to send Boston $850,000 on July 1 to cover part of the $8 million owed to Ottavino, a 35-year-old right-hander entering the final season of a $27 million, three-year contract. New York remains responsible for Ottavino’s $3 million signing bonus, due next Jan. 15.
Chiefs tackle Fisher out of Super Bowl with injury
Kansas City Chiefs left tackle Eric Fisher will miss out on the opportunity to play in Super Bowl 55. Fisher suffered a torn Achilles in his team's 38-24 victory Sunday over the Buffalo Bills in the AFC Championship, according to NFL.com.
Fisher's injury occurred in the fourth quarter and after the game coach Andy Reid told reporters: "It doesn't look too good."
Fisher being officially ruled out means the Chiefs will go into the Super Bowl without either of their starting tackles, as right tackle Mitchell Schwartz has been out for several months with a back injury.