Jaguars sign 2nd-, 3rd-round draft picks
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) - The Jacksonville Jaguars have signed their second- and third-round draft picks.
Safety Johnathan Cyprien and cornerback Dwayne Gratz inked contracts Tuesday, leaving the team with four draft picks unsigned. Seventh-rounders Jeremy Harris and Demetrius McCray signed rookie deals last month.
Cyprien, the 33rd overall pick in April's draft, had 365 tackles, six forced fumbles and seven interceptions in four years at Florida International. He led the team with 93 tackles and four interceptions last season. He is expected to start as a rookie alongside veteran Dwight Lowery.
Gratz, the 64th overall selection, finished his college career with 189 tackles, 30 passes defensed and eight interceptions at Connecticut. He returned 2 of his eight picks for touchdowns. He also is a projected starter, working the entire offseason opposite Alan Ball.
NBA Finals Game 5 viewership down from last year
NEW YORK (AP) - The NBA Finals' television viewership for Game 5 was down 12% from last year.
The San Antonio Spurs' 114-104 victory over Miami on Sunday on ABC was watched by an average of almost 16.3 million people. That's down from nearly 18.5 million for the Heat-Thunder series in 2012.
Miami clinched the title in Game 5 a year ago, and decisive games tend to draw more viewers.
Rookie Fernandez a rare bright spot for Marlins
MIAMI (AP) - While fun has been in short supply for the Miami Marlins, rookie right-hander Jose Fernandez is making their season more bearable.
The 20-year-old Cuban defector is 4-3, remarkable considering the rest of the pitching staff began the week a combined 17-44. Heading into Wednesday's start at Arizona, Fernandez ranks among the top three rookies in the majors in ERA (3.11) , strikeouts per inning (77 in 72 1-3) and opposing batting average (.210).
Such statistics are all the more impressive because he doesn't turn 21 until July 31. In his most recent outing, Fernandez became the first pitcher under 21 to strike out 10 or more since Felix Hernandez with Seattle in 2007.
TWINS-MINOR LEAGUE CRASH
Twins minor league team involved in Fla. crash
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) - A bus carrying a minor league team affiliated with the Minnesota Twins was involved in a wrong-way interstate crash in Florida that killed the driver of the other car.
Florida Highway Patrol Sgt. Dylan Bryan says no one on the Elizabethton Twins bus was injured in the crash that occurred about 4:25 a.m. Tuesday near Jacksonville. A second bus picked up the team and went on to Elizabethton, Tenn. The Twins are a member of the Appalachian League and open their season Thursday.
Bryan says the driver of a black Honda died. The car was traveling south in the northbound lanes on Interstate 295 when it collided head-on with the bus.
The driver was described as a man in his mid-20s. His identity was being withheld until family is notified.
Daytona frontstretch getting $400M facelift
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (AP) - Daytona International Speedway is getting another facelift.
Three years after a complete repaving project, the famed track is getting a revamped frontstretch that will enhance the "fan experience."
International Speedway Corp. estimates the redesign with cost about $400 million. The project is scheduled to begin July 5 and is targeted for completion in January 2016, in time for the Rolex 24 At Daytona and the Daytona 500.
The redesign includes expanded entrances and a series of escalators and elevators to transport fans to three different concourse levels, each featuring spacious and strategically-placed social "neighborhoods" along the nearly mile-long frontstretch. Those 11 neighborhoods, each measuring the size of a football field, will allow fans to meet and socialize during events without ever missing any on-track action.
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