College football • Despite its lopsided loss to Alabama in last January's BCS national title game, LSU will open the 2012 season ranked No. 1 in at least one poll.
LSU sits atop the USA Today Top 25 coaches poll released on Thursday, with Alabama second and Southern California third.
LSU received 18 first-place votes, slightly fewer that the 20 first-place votes for the Crimson Tide and 19 first-place votes for the Trojans. Still, the Tigers narrowly had the most overall points in the poll, which awards 25 points for a No. 1 vote down to one point for 25th.
Oklahoma and Oregon round out the top five, followed by Georgia, Florida State, Michigan, South Carolina and Arkansas.
• In State College, Pa., Anthony Fera was the second Penn State starter to leave after the kicker-punter announced he would be booming kicks for Texas this year.
Sounders roll to CONCACAF win
Soccer • Andy Rose had a goal and two assists to help the Seattle Sounders beat Caribbean champion Caledonia AIA of Trinidad and Tobago 3-1 in Seattle in their opening Group Four game in CONCACAF Champions League.
• Real Madrid scored early and often in outclassing the Los Angeles Galaxy on Thursday night, opening a four-game U.S. exhibition tour with a 5-1 victory over Major League Soccer's champion at Carson, Calif. Gonzalo Higuain scored the opener in just 85 seconds.
From wire reports