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Morning Briefing

Manley Is Usual Manley

February 04, 1988

The season's over, but Dexter Manley remained his outrageous self Wednesday when the Washington Redskins were honored at the White House.

While President Reagan was shaking hands with the players on the South Lawn, Manley grabbed the microphone and told the crowd, "We're going to renegotiate the President's contract for four more years."

Never mind that Reagan is constitutionally prohibited from seeking a third term.

Meeting with Mayor Marion Barry at the District Building, Manley yelled at autograph seekers: "Hey, outta the way, I gotta make a call."

He proceeded to pick up the phone on the mayor's desk and said, "Hey, Mr. President, this is the mayor, Mayor Manley. If George Bush doesn't answer those questions, I'll come over and answer them. Put them in writing please."

Now-it-can-be-told dept.: Doug Williams, who played his first game of football as a safety for his ninth-grade team in Zachary, La., recalls this turning-point play: "It was just me between a fullback and the goal line. I stopped him--but he nearly killed me. I got up and went to the coach and told him I was through with defense. I've been a quarterback ever since."

Would-you-believe-it dept.: Larry Bird admits he looks to the rafters of Boston Garden to draw inspiration, but he's not focusing on the retired jerseys of Bill Russell, Bob Cousy or any of the Celtics but on the jersey of Boston Bruins great Bobby Orr.

"I never saw him play, but I've gotten to know him," Bird said. "Before games, during the playing of the National Anthem, I look up at his No. 4 hanging from the rafters. Maybe it's silly, but that's me. It's spine-tingling. It gets me ready for the game."

Trivia Time: What do basketball coaches Lou Carnesecca of St. John's, Larry Brown of Kansas and Ladell Andersen of Brigham Young have in common? (Answer below.)

How bad was it for Wyoming Coach Benny Dees when the Cowboys lost four of six games?

"My travel agent called me with a play," he said.

And?

"I wrote it down," he said.

The Bear Facts: From Don Pierson of the Chicago Tribune: "When the Bears played the Raiders in the L.A. Coliseum, where they sold 86,011 tickets at $28, $20 and $13, the Bears earned a larger paycheck than they made on home games in Soldier Field.

"At home, the Bears earn between $550,000 and $560,000 for their 60% of the gate. Their 40% check from the Raiders was $660,000."

Add Tribune: The paper recalled that the new wife of Redskins owner Jack Kent Cooke was interviewed by Washington TV reporter Barbara Harrison after this season's opener, in which Jay Schroeder was injured.

Asked if her husband got upset when any of the football players became injured, the now-estranged Suzanne Cooke said: "Certainly, yes he does, as if one of our racehorses was hurt."

Trivia Answer: All three coached in the American Basketball Assn.--Carnesecca (New York Nets), Brown (Carolina Cougars, Spirits of St. Louis, Denver Nuggets), Andersen (Utah Stars).

Quotebook

Larry Bird, admiring a life-size sculpture of him that will be permanently displayed at the New England Sports Museum: "It's probably got a better vertical jump than I do, and may be a little bit faster, but I don't know if it shoots as good."

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