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Morning Briefing

He's Been There and Knows the Score

June 21, 1986

Cesar Luis Menotti, who coached Argentina to the World Cup soccer title in 1978, was asked to name the winners of this year's quarterfinal games.

Menotti: "Brazil will beat France, 2-1; West Germany will defeat Mexico, 2-0; Argentina will edge England, 1-0, and Spain will down Belgium, 3-1."

How about the semifinals?

"Brazil will beat West Germany, 2-0, and Argentina will edge Spain, 1-0."

And the championship game?

"I believe Brazil will become the world champion, but I don't want to predict the score."

Wishy-washy.

Todd Phipers of the Denver Post asked Denver Nuggets Coach Doug Moe to describe Duke's Mark Alarie, the second of two first-round picks by the Nuggets.

Said Moe, struggling for the right words: "You don't pick out one thing. He's a winner. He makes things happen, just a player that plays and is always successful."

He stopped and laughed.

"Your basic stiff," he said.

Trivia Time: Who were the three revolving quarterbacks in Red Hickey's shotgun offense for the San Francisco 49ers in 1961? (Answer below.)

For What It's Worth: Willie Mays Aikens is hitting up a storm for the Puebla Angels in the Triple-A Mexican League. He's batting .447 with 37 homers and 106 RBIs in 90 games.

Aikens, 31, who started his major league career with the Angels, said a part-time Angel scout has been watching him.

"I can help someone as a DH. I know I can," he said.

Said Toronto Maple Leafs owner Harold Ballard, when asked what he was looking for in a coach following the resignation of Dan Maloney: "Anything I can get within the $75,000 range."

Bruce Lowitt of the St. Petersburg Times asked a couple of baseball scouts what they thought of Bo Jackson.

Dick Bogard, Oakland: "It would take him a number of years in the minor leagues--I don't know, maybe three or four--just for him to learn how to play the game."

Fred Uhlman, Baltimore: "He's got all the right muscles but in all the wrong places."

From Buddy Baron WWNK radio in Cincinnati: "I just wish one thing--that I could buy a set of tires that lasts as long as the basketball season."

It's getting crazier in golf-crazy Japan, where you can now buy golf comic books. They have such titles as Birdie Comic, Golf Comic and Big Golf Comic.

Says Golf magazine: "They're aimed not at youngsters, but at businessmen who read the comics while commuting. The stories normally match a good guy and a villain, with the baddie resorting to typically poor sportsmanship to win. Sometimes he succeeds.

"For those who prefer to look at the pictures, scantily clad female golfers abound. Eat your heart out, Jan Stephenson."

San Francisco Giants Manager Roger Craig, who pitched the first game in New York Mets history, threw out the first ball when the club celebrated its 25th anniversary.

Craig: "They should have had the bases loaded, because every time I pitched for them that's what happened."

Trivia Answer: John Brodie, Bill Kilmer and Bobby Waters.

Quotebook

Richard Petty, on becoming the first driver to compete in 1,000 NASCAR Grand National races: "It's easy to start races, but it's hard to win the dad-gummed things."

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