Ex-Wildcat Williams headed to Clippers

The Associated Press

LOS ANGELES In a swap of centers, the Los Angeles Clippers acquired Brian Williams from Denver on Tuesday, sending Elmore Spencer to the Nuggets.

Williams, who played at Arizona and was the No. 10 overall pick in the 1991 NBA draft, averaged 7.9 points, 4.9 rebounds and 20 minutes a game last season. He appeared in 63 games, starting 10.

The 6-foot-11 Williams will be returning to the Los Angeles area; he played at St. Monica High School in Santa Monica.

The 7-0 Spencer averaged 6.9 points, 3.4 rebounds and 19 minutes a game last season. Spencer had two separate stints on the injured list and played in just 19 games, starting eight.

Also Tuesday, the Clippers announced they renounced their rights to free agents Harold Ellis and Michael Smith.

MESA, Ariz. Mesa Community College's basketball coach has resigned over having offered a chance to play to a New York prep star who pleaded guilty to sexual assault.

The college administration ruled later that Richie Parker, 18, could enroll but couldn't take part in sports.

''The players and the people who know about the situation, they know what I stand for and what I represent,'' Rob Standifer said Monday. ''It's been a very difficult time for everyone, and I'm doing what I think is best for the team. I'd love to be out there with my men, but it's in their best interest that I'm resigning.

''We didn't recruit him. He chose us,'' Standifer said of Parker.

Parker had played in a summer all-star competition at the Mesa campus. Two Mesa players were in a New York youth program with Parker. Parker brought a New York friend with him who plans to play for Mesa this season.

Mesa president Larry Christiansen said Standifer's resignation takes effect immediately. Basketball practice opens Oct. 2.

''Because of the extensive public attention on who wasn't playing, rather than who was playing, it was increasingly clear that something had to be done to shift the focus back on the program itself,'' Christiansen.

''Coach Standifer agreed that it was in the best interests of the program for him to step aside. We realize what a difficult decision this was for Rob and we appreciate his sensitivity and concern for the players and the basketball program.''

Parker has been attending classes and is expected to try to transfer to a four-year college at the end of the school year.

Seton Hall, Utah and George Washington all had recruited Parker, a 6-foot-5 guard-forward, but withdrew scholarship offers after he pleaded guilty to forcing a 14-year-old girl into oral sex.

Under a plea agreement, Parker was given five years' probation, apologized to the girl, and promised her a portion of his earnings if he plays basketball professionally.

Standifer, 28, was an assistant coach here for five years after playing for Mesa in 1986-87. He became head coach last season and directed the team to a 15-15 record.

With fall practice beginning in two weeks, Athletic Director Allen Benedict said the school hoped to find a replacement for Standifer quickly.

''Obviously, time is a real consideration,'' said Benedict, one of the first Mesa campus officials to meet with Parker when the possibility of his enrolling or playing first arose in late August.

''Nonetheless, I think Rob made the right decision with the good of the program at heart,'' Benedict added.

Benedict said he would check with former coach Tom Bennett, who headed the Mesa program for 18 years before Standifer took over, but that he doubted Bennett would be interested in coming back.

SAN DIEGO Ken Caminiti of the San Diego Padres on Tuesday night became the first switch-hitter in major league history to homer from both sides of the plate three times in a season.

The Padres third baseman had eight RBIs through seven innings in a game San Diego led 14-4 over Colorado.

Caminiti also homered from both sides of the plate Saturday and Sunday against the Cubs.

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