Golfer Dustin Johnson said in a magazine interview that cocaine is not the reason he chose to sit out the last six months to get his life in order.

"I did not have a problem," Johnson told Sports Illustrated when asked about cocaine. "It's just something I'm not going to get into. I have issues. But that's not the issue."

Johnson said in August that he was taking a leave of absence from the PGA Tour to seek professional help for what he called "personal challenges." Golf.com reported that he had failed a drug test for the third and time and had been suspended. The PGA Tour denied he had been suspended.

The interview was the first for Johnson since he took his leave of absence. He missed the final major, the FedEx Cup playoffs and the Ryder Cup. He was not expected to return until his fiancée, Paulina Gretzky, had their first child. That child, a boy, was born Monday morning, making hockey great Wayne Gretzky a grandfather for the first time.

Johnson is an eight-time winner on the PGA Tour. He said he didn't go to rehab during his break from golf, instead hiring a team of experts, such as a life coach, to help him understand how to get the most out of his talent. Johnson is regarded as one of the best American players and the most athletic.

He said he learned he didn't handle stress the right way.

"My way of getting rid of it was drinking or partying," he told the magazine. "Yeah, that might work for that day or the next week, but eventually everything keeps piling up."

COLLEGE FOOTBALL

Auburn QB says he'll play corner

Auburn's Nick Marshall expects to be a cornerback in the NFL, even though he's playing quarterback at the Senior Bowl.

Marshall said he plans "to finish out as a quarterback" then move to defense after the game. The 6-foot-1, 205-pound Marshall started as a defensive back at Georgia before getting dismissed from the team.

"It wasn't difficult because I played cornerback also coming up," said Marshall, who led Auburn to the national championship game last year. "It won't be a hard transition or me to make."

Ohio State player texted suicidal messages

Kosta Karageorge, the Ohio State football player found dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head, had texted suicidal messages to his ex-girlfriend, police evidence records show. Investigators concluded that Karageorge and his girlfriend broke up around the time he went missing on Nov. 26.

AROUND THE HORN

Soccer: U.S. women's national team midfielder Megan Rapinoe strained a ligament in her right knee and will miss the rest of the team's January training camp. … The sport's world governing body FIFA said it had set up a $100 million World Cup Legacy Fund for Brazil, aimed at various projects. FIFA President Sepp Blatter pledged two years ago to give back some of the 2014 World Cup income to grassroots programs in the South American country, which spent about $15 billion organizing the event.

WNBA: Jenny Boucek is moving one chair over, becoming coach of the Seattle Storm. She succeeds Brian Agler, who left this month to coach the Los Angeles Sparks.

Boxing: Wladimir Klitschko has agreed to defend his WBA and IBF heavyweight titles against Bryant Jennings on April 25 at New York's Madison Square Garden, the champion's first fight in the United States in seven years. Klitschko has a 63-3 record with 54 knockouts; Jennings is 19-0 with 10 KOs.

Track and field: Five Russian race-walkers, including Olympic gold medalists Sergei Kirdyapkin, Olga Kaniskina and Valery Borchin, were banned by the Russian Anti-Doping Agency. Kirdyapkin, Kaniskina and Sergei Bakulin were given bans of three years, two months; Borchin was banned for eight years following a second offense; and Vladimir Kanaykin was banned for life for a repeat offense.

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