The Horsey Set Shuns a Chechen Autocrat

Meanwhile, the Jacksonville Jaguars aren't going to Los Angeles and the plot is on to take the World Cup away from Qatar.

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Today in sports: The Jacksonville Jaguars aren't going to Los Angeles, the plot is on to take the World Cup away from Qatar, and Ramzan Kadyrov's horse is not welcome in New York or Kentucky.

  • The Jacksonville Jaguars briefly stopped being the NFL's sleepiest franchise Tuesday when owner Wayne Weaver announced at a press conference that he had fired head coach Jack Del Rio, given general manager Gene Smith a three-year contract extension, and agreed to sell the team to Illinois businessman Shahid Khan. Jacksonville's the third-smallest media market in the NFL and the team has long been mentioned as a possible candidate to relocate to Los Angeles, but Weaver says Khan, who was born in Pakistan and tried to buy the St. Louis Rams last year, has pledged to keep the team in northern Florida. The rest of the owners still have to sign off on the sale, with a vote slated for early January. [ESPN
  • Syracuse University chancellor Nancy Cantor stated her support for men's basketball coach Jim Boeheim amid the ongoing investigation into sexual abuse allegations against longtime Boeheim assistant Bernie Fine, who the school fired over the weekend. "Coach Boeheim is our coach," Cantor told reporters. "We're very pleased with what he said Sunday night, and continue to stand by him." What he said Sunday night was that he was sorry for initially calling Fine's accuser a liar and a con artist and that and that regretted any remarks that "inhibited [an investigation] from occurring or [were] insensitive to victims of abuse." [AP]
  • Proving once again that no nationally televised Thanksgiving forearm stomping goes unpunished, the NFL has suspended Detroit Lions defensive lineman Ndamukong Suh two games for doing just that to Green Bay Packers offensive lineman Evan Dietrich-Smith when the two teams played last Thursday. Suh, who you can currently see driving around his hometown of Portland in commercials for Chrysler, plans to appeal the suspension so he can play against the New Orleans Saints Sunday night, but you have to get up pretty early in the morning to outfox the NFL league office, which is planning an "expedited hearing" process in order to have a ruling before then. [AP]
  • Australian soccer chief Brian Lowy is promising that "the last word has not been heard yet" on Qatar securing the 2022 World Cup, a truly out-of-the-blue choice that raised eyebrows and payoff accusations on four continents. "It's not over," Lowy Lowy, who spearheaded his country's failed $45 million bid told the local press. "I don't exactly know where it will bounce. The only thing I know is it's not over yet." He has an ally in British prime minister David Cameron, but it's difficult to envision a scenario where the event would be just taken away from the tiny country, even if, as Lowy darkly promised "the state of the FIFA executive committee" makes that kind of power play feasible. [Reuters]
  • Thoroughbred racing officials in New York and Kentucky "have taken steps to exclude from racing a horse" that belongs to Ramzan Kadyrov, the Chechen leader and alleged murdering war criminal who had Hillary Swank to his birthday party earlier this year. Kadyrov tells the Times that  efforts to exclude his horse -- the adorably named Sweet Ducky --  is tantamount to "ideological sabotage against the Chechen authorities," but his horse also might be the problem. Sweet Ducky came in last in his most recent race in Toronto, hasn't run since, "and his whereabouts are a mystery." [The New York Times]
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.