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Kentucky star transfers

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KENTUCKY junior power forward Kyle Wiltjer made it official: He's transferring to Gonzaga, CBS Sports and ESPN.com first reported.

The news was confirmed to the Louisville Courier-Journal by a person with knowledge of the situation who requested anonymity because the enrollment had not been made official yet.

Wiltjer and Wildcats coach John Calipari released oddly-worded statements last month saying Wiltjer was considering a transfer -- but also might stay.

In his earlier letter to fans, Wiltjer said after his experience on the Canadian national developmental team this summer, where he shined in international competition, he wanted "a more significant role" in college and "I recognize that my new and adjusted goals require me to make some very difficult upcoming decisions."

Wiltjer, a 6-10 long-range shooting specialist, is 15th on Kentucky's career three-point percentage list (.390) and sank 90 threes in two seasons with the Wildcats. He averaged 7.3 points and 2.8 rebounds at Kentucky and was the Southeastern Conference's sixth man of the year in the 2012-13 season.

Vilanova steps down, thanks fans

BARCELONA, Spain -- Tito Vilanova thanked Barcelona, its players and fans for "five wonderful years" on Saturday, a day after the club announced he was stepping down to fight his recurring throat cancer.

Vilanova wrote in an open letter on Barcelona's website "the moment has arrived to face a change in my professional life and dedicate my energies and efforts to following a treatment for an illness doctors diagnosed a year and a half ago."

Vilanova had previously twice been obliged to take a medical leave after consecutive surgeries to remove tumors from a saliva gland.

Barcelona said it will name his successor next week with the Spanish league set to start on Aug. 17.

"These are difficult times for me and my family," he wrote. "Now that I am stepping down as Barcelona's coach I hope to have the tranquility and privacy that I and my family need so much at this moment."

Vilanova said he was resigning because his doctors told him the new treatment he will pursue was incompatible with the "responsibilities of the first team coach."

He said he would, however, continue "working for this club that I love so much in other areas of sports operations" without specifying his role.

Lambeau Field can now hold 80,750

WHEN it comes to playing with the big boys, the Green Bay Packers can compete with the best of them.

They've proven that on the field by winning more NFL championships than any other team. And they've done themselves proud off the field with the development of the money-making machine known as Lambeau Field.

Although Green Bay is the smallest city in professional sports by far, its stadium now has the third-largest seating capacity in the NFL.

With the completion of yet another Lambeau expansion, the Packers will play home games in front of capacity crowds of 80,750. That's a staggering number for a city with a population of just more than 104,000, and a far cry from the 32,500 capacity when Lambeau opened in 1957.

FedEx Field in Landover, Md. (85,000), home of the Washington Redskins, has the largest seating capacity in the NFL. MetLife Stadium (82,566) in East Rutherford, N.J., home of the New York Giants and Jets, ranks No. 2.

The Packers reported record revenue and profits this week, and their decision to add 7,000 seats to Lambeau beginning this season was shrewd and economically sound.

The team is coming off a remarkable two-decade run of success, and the Packers' season ticket waiting list hovers just above 100,000.

-- from the news services

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition July 21, 2013 B12

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