Today in sports: Sean Payton is appealing his Bountygate suspension, the IOC declares London fit to host the Olympics, and another snag in the NFL's plan to return to Los Angeles.
According to a source, New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton will appeal his year-long suspension for not nipping the team's bounty program in the bud. Payton almost certainly will not win the appeal, since it's being logged with the very people who decided to suspend him in the first place, but it should give NFL media types a few more weeks to play the Will Bill Parcells Coach the New Orleans Saints? speculation game. (Kudos, incidentally, to Pro Football Talk editor Mike Florio, who predicted this morning that Payton, or someone very close to him, would leak his plan to appeal to coincide Friday afternoon news dump.) [ESPN]
The International Olympic Committee has declared London "ready to welcome the world" for this summer's Olympic games following a tenth and final inspection of the city's facilities. So if you get stuck in the Tube or slip on a crack in the pavement anywhere in the vicinity of Olympic Park at any point in the next 119 days, that's your problem, not London's. [Reuters]
Oh, no: plans to build a stadium in downtown Los Angeles that would house the city's non-existant NFL team are in trouble, reportedly because AEG's Phil Anschultz won't kick in his fair share of the planned $1 billion facility. Lousy Phil Anschultz: robbing hard-working Angelenos of their chance to not support another NFL team. Makes us want to spit. [Yahoo Sports]
Tim Tebow apparently "really wants" to rent a house on the Trump National golf course in Bedmaster, New Jersey. That would put him in proximity to current Jets starting quarterback Mark Sanchez, who lives in the gated community, and has to be at least somewhat undone by the thought of his erstwhile rival living in the same zip code. Feel free to proceed with any and all Single White Tebow jokes. [New York Post]
The very good Joe Posnanski is leaving Sports Illustrated after three years to join that new joint media venture between USA Today and Major League Baseball. It's unclear what Posnanski's role will be or what the venture entials -- the announcement last month was full of media-speak about creating "new content...across digital and mobile platforms" -- but knowing Posnanski, it will be richly-textured and emotive. [The Big Lead]
And finally, on the Heavens to Betsy front: a Cincinnati Bengals cheerleader named Sarah Jones (pictured above, looking very cold) has been indicted for allegedly having sex with one of her students at Dixie Heights High School. We mention this not to embarrass Ms. Jones, or her mother, who was also indicted for allegedly "tampering with physical evidence" related to her daughter's case, but simply to note that the Cincinnati Bengals cheer squad is known as the Ben-Gals. Seriously, the Ben-Gals. Internet, get on your high horse and demand a change. [Cincinnati Enquirer , photo via Bengals.com]