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PRESS BOX: Truex, Waltrip Racing lose sponsor

The SportsXchange

NAPA Auto Parts is severing ties with Martin Truex Jr. and Michael Waltrip Racing, ending the sponsorship at the end of the current season just 13 months into a three-year extension.

NAPA was outspoken against the team after the Sept. 7 race in Richmond when teammate Clint Bowyer prevented Ryan Newman from winning the race by intentionally spinning out with just seven laps to go. NASCAR acted swiftly to remove Truex from the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship and fined MWR $300,000.

NAPA is the primary sponsor for the No. 56 Toyota Camry and pays at least $12 million annually to be the named sponsor for the entire schedule.

"NAPA believes in fair play and does not condone actions such as those that led to the penalties assessed by NASCAR," NAPA said in a statement. "We remain supportive of the millions of NASCAR fans and will evaluate our future position in motorsports."

Without sponsorship, Truex could lose his car, and the MWR team, which includes Bowyer and Brian Vickers, would be forced to cut its workforce significantly.

CBK

Formal bids from prospective host cities are being accepted by the NCAA for the next round of Men's Final Four locations for 2017-2020.

Specifications became available this week to prospective Final Four hosts, with the intention of announcing in November 2014 the winners.

The 2014 Men's Final Four will be played at Cowboys Stadium in Texas, followed by Indianapolis in 2015 and Houston in 2016.

CFB

---Almost a month into the season, the NCAA granted Notre Dame transfer Chris Badger his eligibility at BYU, the school announced Thursday.

Badger left Notre Dame after last season and enrolled at BYU. He has practiced with the Cougars since late August. Approval of Badger's hardship waiver makes him eligible this year. Badger sought the transfer to be closer to his ill mother in Provo.

Badger was redshirted at Notre Dame last year after returning from a church mission in Ecuador. He had signed with the Fighting Irish out of high school in August 2010.
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