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SIDELINES

Corso Delivered Quiroz's Olympic Ring by Telephone

August 09, 1996

Volleyball coach Jess Quiroz was watching the Olympic opening ceremonies at home when he received a phone call from Atlanta.

On the line was U.S. water polo Coach Rich Corso.

Corso, who also coaches water polo at Harvard-Westlake High, called Quiroz, the Wolverines' volleyball coach, from a cellular phone as he was entering Olympic Stadium with the rest of the U.S. delegation.

"Do you see me on TV?" he asked Quiroz.

Quiroz said no. Corso said he'd go stand near a TV camera, and the two hung up.

A few moments later, Quiroz saw his friend.

"Sure enough, I saw the back of his head," Quiroz said. "And he was still using his cellular."

Cut down to size: Perhaps there was another reason why Cal State Northridge football Coach Dave Baldwin changed his mind about offering a scholarship to Derek Poole besides the running back's guilty plea in a calling-card scandal at Oregon State.

During his senior season at Western High in Las Vegas, Poole was listed at 6 feet 1.

In the 1995 Oregon State media guide, he's listed at 6-0.

In the 1996 guide, he's 5-11.

Who wants a shrinking running back?

Saved by the bell: Mike Johnson, an assistant basketball coach at Cal State Northridge, almost recruited himself to death.

Johnson and Northridge Coach Bobby Braswell were in Las Vegas last month spending just about every hour of the day watching high school basketball. It must have taken a toll on Johnson, because one night while stopped at a red light he fell asleep at the wheel.

As he dozed, his foot slipped off the brake and the car rolled into the intersection. He awoke just in time to avoid oncoming traffic when his pager went off.

The page was from his wife. Must be woman's intuition.

Swapping recipes: Beach volleyball player Gail Castro was in the kitchen area at the Olympic Village when it hit her that one of her good friends loves to cook.

She figured a chef's outfit with the Olympic logo would be the ultimate souvenir.

"So I traded a chef one of my bathing suits for one of his uniforms," said Castro, from La Crescenta. "It's an awesome outfit."

And how did her friend like the souvenir?

"Well, this week I'm going to the White House, then to a tournament in New York, so I won't even be home till [Monday]," Castro said.

Quotebook

"The dorms were pretty good, but the food really sucked."

--Olympic beach volleyball player Gail Castro of La Crescenta on her experience in Atlanta.

Things to Do

Branford and Woodland Hills recreation centers will represent the Valley in the Los Angeles City Recreation and Parks baseball final at 9 a.m. Saturday at El Sereno Park in East L.A.

Compiled by Rob Fernas. Contributing: Mike Bresnahan, Jeff Fletcher, Irene Garcia, Bryan Rodgers.

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