Sports

ATLANTA (AP) — Arthur Smith, who inherited a rebuilding project in his first NFL head coaching job and failed to lift Atlanta from its playoff drought, was fired late Sunday night, hours after completing his third straight losing season with the Falcons. Smith, the 41-year-old son of FedEx founder Fred Smith, finished with a record of 21-30. He went 7-10 each year.

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Derek Carr passed for four touchdowns to lift the New Orleans Saints over the Atlanta Falcons 48-17 Sunday, but both teams missed out on a chance to win the division when Tampa Bay beat Carolina. Either New Orleans (9-8) or Atlanta (7-10) would have won the NFC South by winning their regular-season finale if the Buccaneers lost. Baker Mayfield and Tampa Bay finished a 9-0 victory while the Saints and Falcons were still on the field.

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Reserve quarterback Jameis Winston and New Orleans' offense capped off a convincing victory with an aggressive play call that defied the orders of their own coaches and upset the rival Atlanta Falcons. Leading 41-17 with 1:10 left, the Saints lined up in “victory formation" — indicating Winston intended to take a knee to run out the clock — but surprisingly handed off to Jamaal Williams for a 1-yard touchdown that made the final score 48-17.

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Russel Tchewa scored 18 points and grabbed 11 rebounds as Georgia closed out a 75-68 win at Missouri in the Southeastern Conference opener for both teams on Saturday afternoon.

MOBILE, Ala. (AP) — Lucas Taylor scored 22 points as Georgia State beat South Alabama 90-76 on Saturday night. Taylor shot 9 for 13, including 3 for 4 from beyond the arc for the Panthers (7-7, 2-1 Sun Belt Conference). Toneari Lane scored 20 points while shooting 7 for 16, including 6 for 12 from beyond the arc. Leslie Nkereuwem had 13 points and went 6 of 8 from the field.

ATLANTA (AP) — Devin McGlockton scored a career-high 30 points, and Boston College rallied from a 16-point deficit in the second half and beat Georgia Tech 95-87 on Saturday for its first Atlantic Coast Conference win and ending a five-game losing streak against the Yellow Jackets.

The Atlanta Braves added depth to their bench on Friday by signing former New York Mets utility infielder Luis Guillorme to a $1.1 million, one-year deal.

HATTIESBURG, Miss. (AP) — Austin Crowley scored 25 points, Andre Curbelo recorded a triple-double and Southern Miss beat Georgia State 79-73 on Thursday night. Curbelo had 13 points, 10 rebounds and 11 assists to become the first Golden Eagle to reach the triple-double mark since 1980.

JONESBORO, Ark. (AP) — Dyondre Dominguez scored 26 points as Arkansas State beat Georgia Southern 109-83 on Thursday night. Dominguez had 12 rebounds for the Red Wolves (5-9, 1-1 Sun Belt Conference). Taryn Todd scored 20 points while going 8 of 12 (2 for 4 from 3-point range), and added eight assists.

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The regular season-ending matchup between the Atlanta Falcons and New Orleans Saints symbolizes the NFL’s efforts to promote parity. Neither team has a winning record, yet both are still playing meaningful football.

ATLANTA (AP) — Jalen Johnson scored a career-high 28 points and the Atlanta Hawks held off Oklahoma City 141-138 on Wednesday night, ending the Thunder’s five-game winning streak. Atlanta opened the game with 11 straight points and never trailed. Trae Young had 24 points and 11 assists, one of four Hawks players who scored more than 20.

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Chandler Jackson scored 14 points to lead four in double figures, and Florida State jumped out early and beat Georgia Tech 82-71 on Wednesday night.

ATHENS, Ga. (AP) — Junior tight end Brock Bowers, who led No. 6 Georgia in receiving despite missing four games, confirmed his plans to enter the NFL draft on Tuesday night. Bowers announced his decision on Instagram.

ATLANTA (AP) — Already assured of their sixth consecutive losing season, the Atlanta Falcons and their coach, Arthur Smith, still have reason to believe all is not lost. For that, they should give thanks to the woeful NFC South.

ATLANTA (AP) — The Boston Red Sox will pay the Braves $17 million in equal installments of $8.5 million on April 1 and July 1 as part of last weekend's trade that sent left-hander Chris Sale to Atlanta.

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The remarkable comeback story of Michael Penix Jr. is a victory away from a perfect ending for Washington. Penix passed for 430 yards and two touchdowns, and the Huskies held off Texas 37-31 in the Sugar Bowl on Monday night to advance to the College Football Playoff title game, earning both the sixth-year quarterback with two surgically repaired knees and the beleaguered Pac-12 a chance to go out a champion.

PASADENA, Calif. (AP) — Blake Corum rushed for a 17-yard touchdown on the second snap of overtime, and top-seeded Michigan advanced to its first College Football Playoff championship game with a 27-20 victory over fourth-seeded Alabama in the Rose Bowl on Monday.

ATHENS, Ga. (AP) — Georgia running backs Daijun Edwards and Kendall Milton say they are entering the NFL draft. Edwards led the Bulldogs with 880 rushing yards. Milton capped a productive senior season by rushing for two touchdowns in the Bulldogs' 63-3 rout of Florida State in the Orange Bowl.

FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. (AP) — The Atlanta Falcons' season of uncertainty at quarterback will continue through the final week of the regular season. Falcons coach Arthur Smith said Monday that Taylor Heinicke, who left Sunday's 37-17 loss to the Chicago Bears with a left ankle injury, will try to return this week.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Trae Young had 40 points and 13 assists, Dejounte Murray added 32 points and the Atlanta Hawks overcame a slow start and spotty late foul shooting to beat the Washington Wizards 130-126 on Sunday.

CHICAGO (AP) — The Atlanta Falcons had a chance to increase their slim chances of making the playoffs for the first time since 2017. They failed. And a familiar problem played a major role. Taylor Heinicke threw three of Atlanta's four interceptions during the Falcons' 37-17 loss to the Chicago Bears on Sunday. He was 10 for 29 for 163 yards in his second straight start after Desmond Ridder was benched for the second time this season.

Cale Yarborough, considered one of NASCAR's all-time greatest drivers and the first to win three consecutive Cup titles, died Sunday. He was 84.

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (AP) — Carson Beck passed for 203 yards and two touchdowns, backup QB Gunnar Stockton passed for two more scores and No. 6 Georgia routed previously undefeated and fourth-ranked Florida State 63-3 in the Orange Bowl on Saturday night in a matchup of teams missing out on the College Football Playoff.

ATLANTA (AP) — De'Aaron Fox scored 26 of his 31 points after halftime and the Sacramento Kings rallied from a 23-point, first-quarter deficit to beat the Atlanta Hawks 117-110 on Friday night.

Mercer defeats Talladega 74-50

MACON, Ga. (AP) — Jalyn McCreary scored 24 points to help Mercer defeat Talladega 74-50 on Friday.

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