BEMIDJI (AP) -- Bemidji State BASKETBALL coach Dave Gunther announced his retirement Tuesday after a 27-year career that included 476 wins and four schools.
Gunther spent the last six seasons with the Beavers, who were 10-17 this season.
His greatest coaching success came at North Dakota, where he guided the Fighting Sioux to a 342-177 record over 18 seasons, including five conference championships.
Gunther played collegiately at Iowa, where he was named All-Big Ten and honorable mention All-America.
Lynx announce preseason schedule
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- The Minnesota Lynx announced Tuesday their four-game preseason schedule, which includes a pair of late-May home games with Utah and Charlotte.
The Lynx play on the road May 12 against Charlotte and May 16 against Portland, then return to home to face Utah May 18 and Charlotte again May 26.
The Lynx open their third WNBA regular season on the road May 31 at Portland.
Viking sign one-year pacts
EDEN PRAIRIE (AP) -- The Minnesota Vikings signed three players, including Pro Bowl center Matt Birk, to one-year contracts Tuesday.
Birk and the Vikings were unable to agree on a long-term deal, so he instead signed a one-year tender believed to be worth about $1.15 million.
Minnesota also signed wide receiver Joey Kent and long snapper Mitch Palmer.
"Obviously, this is where I want to be," said Birk, who made $358,000 last year. "That's no secret. I'm optimistic that we can do a long-term deal, but at least I know where I'm going to be next year."
Birk will be eligible for unrestricted free agency in 2002, and the team hoped to sign him to a five- or six-year contract. Linta is believed to be seeking a contract approaching an annual average of $4 million.
In his first year as a starter last season, Birk went to the Pro Bowl to back up Jeff Christy. Birk replaced him after Christy became the league's highest-paid center when he joined the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
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