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MORNING BRIEFING

That Wasn't Protein Powder in Package Sent to Swimmer

October 29, 1994|MAL FLORENCE

Danish Olympic swimmer Peter Rohde is on a protein diet, so he ordered fruit from a South American country.

He got more than be bargained for--about 13 pounds of cocaine valued at $4 million. The dope was found in a shipment at Copenhagen's main fruit and vegetable market.

Police wouldn't identify the South American country, or the type of fruit.

And please, no jokes about going bananas.

Trivia time: When last did a team ranked No. 1 in the Associated Press poll play in the Rose Bowl game?

Confession: Mike Royko in the Chicago Tribune on baseball owners paying huge sums to mediocre players:

"Now they are saying, 'Save us from our silliness.' Sorry but you should join Splurgers Anonymous. Stand up at a meeting and say, 'Hi, I'm George Steinbrenner, and I am a splurge-aholic.' "

Forgettable season: Jackie Robinson, one of UCLA's most famous athletes, played on its worst football team.

The Bruins had a 1-9 record in 1940, losing a school-record seven consecutive games before beating Washington State, 34-26. Robinson, a halfback, averaged only 3.2 yards a carry after averaging a school-record 12.2 in 1939.

Snubbed: In 1932, Colgate was undefeated, untied and unscored on in nine games--and uninvited to the Rose Bowl.

Unbeaten Pittsburgh got the invitation instead and lost to USC, 35-0. There were no other major bowl games at the time.

Settling down: Remember Darryl Dawkins, the backboard shattering center with the Philadelphia 76ers who once declared his homeland as the Planet Lovetron?

Well, he has come back to earth with the Sioux Falls Skyforce of the Continental Basketball Assn. and is hoping to get back to the NBA.

Conventional wisdom: ESPN analyst Beano Cook in the News and Observer in Raleigh, N.C.: "Writing is the hardest job there is. The other two? Moving and being an air-traffic controller.

"You go 9-2 as a football coach, you've had a good year. You go 9-2 as a traffic controller and it's a bad day."

There's a limit: Asked whether he would manage the Oakland Athletics in 1995 if the Haas family sold the team, Tony La Russa said:

"That depends. . . . If they sold it to a group of writers, then I would exercise the option and I'm out of here."

Easy game: Golf hackers have to be envious of Bruce Lietzke. The veteran player takes considerable time off from the PGA Tour, but it doesn't affect his performance.

"I've used the same swing for 20 years, so that allows me to go home and not touch a club," Lietzke told Steve Hershey of USA Today.

Trivia answer: In 1980, when Ohio State was No. 1 before losing to USC, 17-16.

Quotebook: Derek Harper, New York Knick guard, on teammate Charles Oakley: "He's like Dennis Rodman--with sense."

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