Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly will be trying for his first Bowl Championship Series title instead of a Super Bowl next season. The third-year Fighting Irish...

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College football

Kelly decides to stay

Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly will be trying for his first Bowl Championship Series title instead of a Super Bowl next season.

The third-year Fighting Irish coach, who interviewed with the Philadelphia Eagles a day after Notre Dame was beaten 42-14 by Alabama in the BCS National Championship Game, said his interest with the NFL is over for the moment.

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“Like every kid who has ever put on a pair of football cleats, I have had thoughts about being a part of the NFL. However, after much reflection and conversation with those closest to me, I have decided to remain at Notre Dame,” the 51-year-old Kelly said in a statement released by the university Saturday.

“This decision was motivated purely by my love for Notre Dame and the entire Fighting Irish community, the young men I have the great fortune to coach and my desire to continue to build the best football program in the country.”

The remarks were the first comments by Kelly since news broke he had interviewed with the Eagles.


NHL lockout ends

The NHL finally is back, and this time it is official.

Nearly a week after a tentative labor deal was agreed to by the league and its players, the sides agreed to a required memorandum of understanding Saturday night that makes the lockout a thing of the past.

Training camps will open Sunday, and a 99-day regular season will begin Saturday.

Each team will play 48 games and there will be no interconference play until the Stanley Cup Final in June. No exhibition games will be played this week.

Players voted to ratify the collective-bargaining agreement with the league by a 667-12 margin. The new deal is for 10 years, but either side can opt out of it after eight years. The previous agreement was in effect for seven seasons.

The Vancouver Canucks will play their first three games at home — against Anaheim on Saturday, Edmonton next Sunday and Calgary on Jan. 23.


Mullins, Dunn honored

Maryland forward Patrick Mullins and North Carolina midfielder Crystal Dunn, both juniors, have won the Hermann Trophy as the top college players in the United States.

Most ballots are cast by Division I coaches whose programs are part of the National Soccer Coaches Association of America.

Chelsea routs Stoke

Chelsea routed Stoke 4-0 to move into third place in the English Premier League, taking advantage of Jonathan Walters’ two own goals and missed penalty kick.

Walters headed the ball into his own net on attempted clearances in the second minute of first-half stoppage time and in the 62nd.


Alice McKennis of Glenwood Springs, Colo., earned her first World Cup skiing victory by winning a downhill in St. Anton, Austria, and superstar Lindsey Vonn of Vail, Colo., was sixth after returning from a nearly monthlong break because of an intestinal illness.

McKennis, 23, had never finished among the top three before her run of 1 minute, 14.62 seconds beat runner-up Daniela Merighetti of Italy by 0.07.

• Meanwhile, Ted Ligety of Park City, Utah, won a World Cup giant slalom in Adelboden, Switzerland. The 28-year-old has 15 career World Cup victories, all in giant slalom.

• Hall of Fame jockey Gary Stevens, 49, won his first North American race since 2005, when he began a retirement that ended last weekend. Stevens took the first race at Santa Anita in Arcadia, Calif., aboard Branding, who paid $13.20 to win

Stevens led the jockey standings at Longacres in Renton in 1983 and 1984. He has 4,889 career victories.

Zeewat ($3.80 to win), a colt owned by George Todaro of Seattle and trainer Jerry Hollendorfer, beat Wildcat Moon by a half-length in the $100,000 California Derby at Golden Gate Fields in Albany.

Russell Baze rode Zeewat, who ran 1-1/16 miles in 1 minute, 46.50 seconds.

Seattle Times news services