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Morning Briefing

Larry Brown Knew Danny When a Boy

January 28, 1985

Let's see, shortly after Ed Manning was named an assistant basketball coach at the University of Kansas he was followed by Danny Manning, his 6-foot 11-inch son from Page High School in Greensboro, N.C.

Funny business? The people in Carolina country thought so, but Kansas head Coach Larry Brown can't understand all the howling. He points out that Ed Manning once played for him when he coached the Carolina Cougars in the ABA.

"What people forget is that I knew Danny before he was a basketball player," Brown said. "I remember him trying to imitate his dad when he would come to shoot-arounds on game days."

Says Danny Manning: "When people say my father got the job just because of me, I laugh. If people say he can't coach, how do they explain me? He's the one who taught me how to play the game and people seem to think I'm a pretty good player."

Says Brown: "Danny Manning is the most complete young player I have ever seen. He'll be the best."

If Ralph Sampson and Akeem Olajuwon are the Twin Towers in Houston, what are 265-pounders Lonnie Shelton and Melvin Turpin in Cleveland?

"The Twin Tubbies," suggests Mark Kiszla of the Denver Post. He adds: "The only time Cleveland runs is when meals are waiting."

Said Boston Coach K.C. Jones after Sunday's 128-127 win over Portland: "At the end of the game the ball belongs in Larry Bird's hands. I started to set up a play for Cedric Maxwell, but Larry said, 'To hell with that, give me the ball.' "

They did, and he hit a behind-the-backboard baseline jumper at the buzzer for the winning basket.

Said Portland Coach Jack Ramsay: "It was a fantastic shot by a magnificent player. He's the best in the league, and one of the best of all time. Nothing he does surprises me anymore."

Weeb Ewbank, who coached both Joe Namath and John Unitas, explains what made them special: "A lot of quarterbacks can throw a ball 70 yards. Joe and Johnny, those two could pass it 60 yards."

From Jack Clark, looking forward to playing in St. Louis after being traded from San Francisco: "I'll be playing somewhere I can be more productive and it will be a little more fun coming to the park every day. You don't develop good work habits at Candlestick. You can't always do what you want to do out there, like trying to hit Nolan Ryan with dust blowing in your eyes."

For What It's Worth: Hart Lee Dykes, the third-leading receiver in Texas high school history, said he is considering USC and UCLA, along with SMU, Texas A&M and Illinois.

Dykes, 6-4 and 212, was voted Mr. Blue Chip of 1985 by Southwest Conference coaches after catching 32 passes for 910 yards, a 28-yard average, for Bay City High School. He also threw four touchdown passes on end-arounds and as a safety he had eight interceptions.

Quotebook

TV analyst Al McGuire, noting that Rollie Massimino paid his dues as a high school and small college coach before becoming the head basketball coach at Villanova: "He doesn't have to back up to the window when he gets his paycheck."

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