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Morning Briefing

Klever Is a Winner to Brother

November 13, 1987

The day after the New York Jets beat the Seattle Seahawks, tight end Rocky Klever told Greg Logan of Newsday that he got a call from his brother in Alaska.

Klever: "He told me he bet on us, and he called to thank me forwinning him some money. He said, 'I didn't want to go with you guys, but they said some stuff on ESPN about home underdogs on Monday night winning 80% of the time.' "

Add Klever: He is now a starter, because of an injury to Mickey Shuler, and he was asked if his friendship with quarterback Ken O'Brien will result in more passes being thrown his way.

"It's better to be (Coach) Joe Walton's friend," Klever said. "He calls the plays."

Trivia Time: What do Chicago Cubs General Manager Jim Frey, Cincinnati Reds Manager Pete Rose and San Francisco Giants coach Don Zimmer have in common? (Answer below.)

Add Frey: When he was managing the Kansas City Royals, network analyst Ron Luciano, the former umpire, said: "If it's true we learn by our mistakes, then Jim Frey will be the best manager ever."

Wrote Bill James in his "Baseball Abstract": "Jim Frey has the emotional intensity of a comatose eggplant."

Said Dallas linebacker Steve DeOssie, after Philadelphia Eagles Coach Buddy Ryan poured it on against the Cowboys and then bragged about it: "That's the pathetic ramblings of a pathetic, senile old man."

Said Ryan: "How could he call me old?"

Add Eagles: Said rookie defensive tackle Jerome Brown, explaining how Herschel Walker caught him from behind after he picked up a fumble: "I was watching myself on the stadium monitor."

Sure.

From Todd Phipers of the Denver Post: "In an effort to 'ice' Chicago kicker Kevin Butler, the Green Bay Packers called a timeout before his field-goal attempt on the final play of the game Sunday. Not only did the respite clear his mind, Butler said afterwards, but he was able to chop up the turf to create a small mound where he wanted to kick. He drilled the 52-yarder--equaling the longest of his NFL career--and the Bears won, 26-24."

Add Bears: Said Jim McMahon, looking toward Monday night's game at Denver: "I hate to lose. I'm still . . . we lost that golf match out there."

This summer, in a charity match at Denver, McMahon and Bear Coach Mike Ditka lost to John Elway and Bronco Coach Dan Reeves.

Add McMahon: Said Chicago guard Tom Thayer, marveling at the quarterback's ability to come up with big plays: "It's crazy. He'll say to the line, 'Just give me an extra second on this one. It's gonna be big.' And then, sure enough, it happens."

Thayer adds: "What sets Jim apart is not so much his physical abilities, but his intelligence. Mike Tomczak is probably a better athlete, but Jim's got the smarts."

Says Coach Mike Ditka: "Jim doesn't watch much film, but what he watches, he remembers."

Said Sacramento Kings Coach Bill Russell, after rookie Kenny Smith scored 21 points in Tuesday night's win over Denver: "It was his best game yet, but he's still a rookie. He doesn't count. He's not even a person yet."

Trivia Answer: All three attended Western Hills High School in Cincinnati.

Quotebook

St. Louis Mayor Vincent C. Schoemehl Jr., on the possible loss of the football Cardinals to another city: "Life goes on. I have it on good authority that babies were still being born in Baltimore after the Colts pulled out."

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