IOWA CITY — The train that has carried thousands of Iowa football fans from Coralville to Kinnick Stadium on games days will cease operations, the athletic department announced Wednesday.

The Iowa Northern Railway’s Hawkeye Express has made the 10-minute trip on game days since 2004. The athletic department and railroad said now is the time to end the train rides because of the likelihood of continued social distancing this season season and the need for equipment upgrades and increases in operating expenses.

An average of 3,700 fans boarded the train in Coralville on game days in 2019. Fans weren’t allowed to attend games in 2020 because of the pandemic.

“The Hawkeye Express has been a wonderful part of our Hawkeye football gameday experience,” senior associate athletic director Matt Henderson said. “While it was a difficult decision to make, we all agree it is the right decision.”

The Hawkeye Express ran on track owned by the Iowa Interstate Railroad, which operates between Council Bluffs, Iowa, and Chicago.

Fans who rode the Hawkeye Express are encouraged to use public parking lots around the stadium.

Nike has suspended its endorsement contract with Deshaun Watson amid allegations of sexual assault and harassment against the Houston Texans quarterback. Watson has been accused of sexual assault or harassment in lawsuits filed by 22 women.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The Tennessee Titans have hired veteran defensive coordinator and former Lions head coach Jim Schwartz as a senior defensive assistant.

Schwartz has been defensive coordinator for 14 NFL seasons, the last five with Philadelphia. The Eagles ranked third in the NFL last season with 49 sacks. Schwartz was on the Philadelphia staff that won the 2017 NFL championship.

CINCINNATI — The Cincinnati Bengals continued to part with veterans when they released running back Giovani Bernard on Wednesday.

Bernard, who had a year left on a two-year contract that would have paid him $4.1 million in 2021, played his entire eight-year NFL career in Cincinnati and established himself as a reliable blocking back and receiver. The 29-year-old Bernard became a starter for the last 10 games of 2020 after Joe Mixon suffered a foot injury.

WRESTLING

IOWA CITY — The University of Iowa will celebrate the NCAA championship wrestling team April 17 at Kinnick Stadium following the Iowa football open practice. The open practice begins at 9:30 a.m., and the championship recognition begins at approximately noon.

Admission to both events is free. Fans will be required to wear masks. Additional information can be found at hawkeyesports.com/footballgameday.

BASKETBALL

Arizona has parted ways with men’s basketball coach Sean Miller as the program awaits its fate in an NCAA infractions investigation, a person with knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press. Miller and the Wildcats have been in the NCAA’s crosshairs since being ensnared in a 2017 FBI investigation into shady recruiting practices.

BASEBALL

The Milwaukee Brewers are going to start allowing tailgating again outside American Family Field before home games.

Tailgating wasn’t permitted for the team’s first home series as part of their pandemic-related protocols. The Brewers said tailgating will be permitted again starting with Monday’s game against the Chicago Cubs. Brewers officials say the move has the support of the Milwaukee Health Department.

GOLF

The LPGA Tour says the final event of its three-tournament Asia swing has been canceled. The Blue Bay LPGA on Hainan Island in China was scheduled for May 13-16, following tournaments in Singapore and Thailand.

The LPGA said the the cancellation was due to current health concerns and travel restrictions from the COVID-19 pandemic, and the decision was guided by the China Golf Association, which oversees all golf events in China.

It is expected to return to the schedule in 2022.

Golf’s European Tour says the French Open has been postponed because of COVID-19 restrictions the government announced last week. The tour says it will work with the French golf federation to try to reschedule it. The French Open was scheduled for May 6-9 at Le Golf National.

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