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PRESS BOX: NASCAR driver Burton loses ride

The SportsXchange

NASCAR veteran Jeff Burton is out next season as a driver for Richard Childress Racing, the team announced Wednesday.

No replacement was named for the 46-year-old driver who is 22nd in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series standings this season. The No. 31 car will retain Caterpillar's primary sponsorship next year.

A possible replacement could be Ryan Newman, who will not return to Stewart-Haas Racing for the 2014 season. The three-car Childress team's other drivers next year are expected to be Paul Menard and Austin Dillon, who likely will be promoted from the Nationwide Series.

The last of Burton's 21 career Cup wins came in 2008. The last time he made the season-ending Chase for the championship was in 2010.

GOLF

Fred Couples added Jordan Spieth and Webb Simpson as his captain's picks for the U.S. team that will play in the Presidents Cup next month.

The selections were announced Wednesday for the biennial matches against an international team on Oct. 3-6 at Muirfield Village Golf Club in Dublin, Ohio.

Spieth and Simpson join the 10 players who qualified on points: Tiger Woods, Brandt Snedeker, Phil Mickelson, Matt Kuchar, Jason Dufner, Keegan Bradley, Steve Stricker, Bill Haas, Hunter Mahan and Zach Johnson. All 10 U.S. qualifiers have experience in the Ryder Cup or Presidents Cup.

Others presumed to have been in the running for the captain's spots were Steve Stricker, Jim Furyk, Bubba Watson, Rickie Fowler and Dustin Johnson.

The 20-year-old Spieth came out of nowhere to make the team. He won the John Deere Classic in July at age 19 and also has eight top-10 finishes this year, including a tie for fourth in the Deutsche Bank Championship when he finished with three birdies and an eagle on the final four holes for a 62.

Couples said he texted Furyk on Tuesday night because "I just couldn't handle" calling him with the news.

The international team will be composed of Brendon de Jonge, Marc Leishman, Adam Scott, Jason Day, Charl Schwartzel, Ernie Els, Louis Oosthuizen, Branden Grace, Richard Sterne, Hideki Matsuyama, Graham DeLaet and Angel Cabrera.

Since the event began in 1994, the U.S. team has a 7-1-1 record. Its only loss came in 1998 at Royal Melbourne.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL

Alabama received a commitment from the nation's No. 1 offensive tackle recruit in the backyard of Southeastern Conference rival LSU.

Cameron Robinson of Monroe, La., announced Wednesday on ESPNU his commitment to the Crimson Tide over the home-state Tigers.

The 6-foot-5, 330-pounder, rated as the top overall recruit at all positions by 247Sports.com, joins an Alabama recruiting class of 20 that already is ranked No. 1 in the country. He also is the sixth offensive tackle to commit to the Crimson Tide for 2014.

Robinson said his plan is to graduate from high school in December and enroll at Alabama in January for the spring term, which would allow him to participate in offseason workouts and spring practice.

Commitments are not binding until a recruit signs a national letter of intent in February.
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