Randy Lerner reached a deal to sell the Cleveland Browns to Tennessee truck-stop magnate Jimmy Haslam III — a minority stockholder...
Browns sold for $1 billion
Randy Lerner reached a deal to sell the Cleveland Browns to Tennessee truck-stop magnate Jimmy Haslam III — a minority stockholder in the rival Pittsburgh Steelers.
Lerner will sell 70 percent of the Browns to Haslam now. The other 30 percent will revert to him four years after the closing date.
"This is a very exciting time for my family and me," Haslam said through the team.
"To own such a storied franchise as the Cleveland Browns, with its rich tradition and history, is a dream come true. We are committed to keeping the team in Cleveland and seeing it get back to the elite of the NFL — something all Browns fans want and deserve."
While the papers have been signed, the NFL still must approve the sale. Getting the nod from 24 of the 32 teams is required, and no date has been set for a vote because the sale has not been presented to the league.
ESPN reported the sale price was more than $1 billion. For comparison, the Miami Dolphins sold at a value of more than $1 billion in 2009.
The Browns were valued at $977 million last year by Forbes magazine.
Asked if he was surprised by the deal, team president Mike Holmgren said: "On one hand, the surprising part was the time of the year. But in this business, I gave up being surprised a long time ago."
Eagles, Colts make deal
The Philadelphia Eagles traded linebackers Moise Fokou and Greg Lloyd to the Indianapolis Colts for cornerback Kevin Thomas and a conditional seventh-round pick in the 2013 draft.
Panthers terminate contract
The Carolina Panthers terminated the contract of offensive tackle Jeff Otah, a former first-round draft pick. Carolina dealt Otah to the New York Jets for a conditional seventh-round draft pick in 2013, but the trade was rescinded after Otah failed a physical.
Saints CB needs surgery
Saints starting cornerback Jabari Greer will have sports hernia surgery after pulling his groin during practice this week. He should return in time for the regular season.
LSU tops coaches poll
Despite its lopsided loss to Alabama in January's BCS national title game, Louisiana State will open the 2012 season ranked No. 1 in the USA Today Top 25 coaches poll. Alabama is second and USC third.
Oklahoma and Oregon round out the top five, followed by Georgia, Florida State, Michigan, South Carolina and Arkansas.
Washington missed being ranked by two votes.
Penn St. kicker to Texas
Anthony Fera is the second starter to leave Penn State after the kicker-punter said he would be booming kicks for Texas this year. The junior, who is from the Houston area, will have two years of eligibility left.
Eight players have left Penn State since the NCAA imposed penalties July 23, including a four-year bowl ban and significant scholarship reductions.
Ball won't be ready for camp
Wisconsin coach Bret Bielema said star running back Montee Ball won't be ready for camp after suffering a concussion during a street fight.
Bielema gave no indication Ball would suffer any long-term problems. He said Ball's absence will spare last year's Heisman Trophy finalist hits and give other backs more repetitions.
Real Madrid routs Galaxy
Real Madrid scored early and often in outclassing the host Los Angeles Galaxy, opening a four-game U.S. exhibition tour with a 5-1 victory over Major League Soccer's champion.
Former NBA guard and Kentucky assistant coach Rod Strickland was arrested near the Kentucky campus and charged with driving on a DUI suspended license. Strickland, 46, was also charged with not having registered license plates and failure to signal.
Stiemsma signs with Wolves
Greg Stiemsma, a 6-foot-11, 260-pound defensive specialist, signed a two-year contract with the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Fish, Querrey advance
Sam Querrey finished off Benjamin Becker with his eighth ace of the match, winning 6-4, 6-3 to advance to the Citi Open quarterfinals in Washington, D.C.
Top-seeded Mardy Fish also advanced, beating Ricardas Berankis 6-3, 6-1. In the women's tournament, Vania King was a 6-1, 3-6, 6-4 winner over Coco Vandeweghe.
• Houston Texans defensive end J.J. Watt dislocated his left elbow and will miss some practice time, but the team doesn't believe his injury is serious.
• Tennessee Titans starting center Eugene Amano injured his right triceps in a collision in team drills. Amano left the field holding his arm — the one he uses on snaps — and was escorted to the locker room.
• Ohio State running back Bri'onte Dunn pleaded innocent to a disorderly conduct charge after a weekend arrest resulted in police finding marijuana in the car he was driving.
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