THE NCAA COULD look into changing its bylaws to better establish its authority to address situations like the abuse scandals at Penn State and Syracuse, president Mark Emmert said yesterday.

The governing body already has a working group considering different rules that could prevent violations in what have traditionally been college sports' problem areas, such as recruiting and amateurism.

"This may - I'm underscoring may - become a point of discussion with them. If we're going to do something, the timing would be pretty good," Emmert said. "Right now, there's not an active discussion of it, but this is a very new topic."

The NCAA is examining whether Penn State violated bylaws covering institutional control and ethical conduct in its handling of accusations of child sex abuse against former assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky. It is monitoring the Syracuse situation - in which three men have accused former men's basketball assistant coach Bernie Fine of abuse - but has not initiated an inquiry.

Parts of the Penn State scandal may potentially be subject to NCAA bylaws, he said.

"This is allegedly about behavior that took place on campus, by members of a program and allegedly covered up by members of that program," he told reporters after speaking at the Intercollegiate Athletics Forum in New York.

The NCAA asked Penn State to respond to a letter of inquiry about the scandal by Dec. 16, though it is unlikely the school will be able to provide all the information the NCAA is seeking by then because of several ongoing investigations, school officials say.

Tennis * 

Roger Federer has committed to play for Switzerland against the United States in the first round of the 2012 Davis Cup. The Swiss tennis federation says Federer confirmed that he intended to play in the Feb. 10-12 series in Fribourg, Switzerland. The 16-time Grand Slam singles champion has not played a first-round match since 2004.

Novak Djokovic ended the season with a record $12.6 million in prize money. The 24-year-old Serb won 10 titles in 2011, including three Grand Slams, to beat the previous record of $10.1 million shared by Rafael Nadal for his 2010 season and Roger Federer for 2007.

Philly File * 

Penn midfielder Christian Barriero and Delaware forward Evans Firmpong were invited to MLS' college combine, Jan. 6-10, in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

Sport Stops * 

Formula One is returning to the United States in 2012 after reaching a 10-year deal to hold the U.S. Grand Prix in Austin, Texas. The race will mark F1's return to the United States for the first time since 2007.

Lindsey Vonn captured her first World Cup win on U.S. slopes by taking a super-G in front of a big crowd in Beaver Creek, Colo., that was cheering her with ringing cow bells.