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The Inside Track | Morning Briefing

Heisman Needs Stronger Stance Against Sponsors

September 18, 1997|MAL FLORENCE

Michael Mayo of the Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel lamenting the corporate intrusion in sports, such as the image of the Heisman Trophy being leased by the Coors brewery:

"Imagine the Red Lobster Red Sox or the Boeing Jets, the SuperCuts Clippers or the Dodge Rams? Or Nike Jordan, Shaq Reebok and Gatorade Griffey Jr.?

"It's enough to make you cry in your Heisman."

And this from Greg Cote of the Miami Herald: "Now that Coors sponsors the Heisman Trophy will there be a separate Heisman Light for small schools?"

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Trivia time: Who is Larry Owings and what is his claim to fame?

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Neat solution: From Tim Keown of the San Francisco Chronicle: "This week's realignment plan: 30 teams, 30 divisions, all intrasquad games, zero travel costs."

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A classic: From reader George Kiseda: "On a one-sentence filler item that said only that cheetahs were the fastest land animals, a Pittsburgh Press copy editor named Jim Gregg once wrote the following headline: 'Cheetahs Never Lose.' "

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Whoa, everybody! everal readers have called to say that the expression "Whoa, Nellie" was first popularized here by wrestling announcer Dick Lane on local television in the 1950s. It's also a trademark expression for ABC college football announcer Keith Jackson.

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Women's choice: Carol Slezak in the Chicago Sun-Times: "The NFL says that more than 40 million women watch the NFL on an average weekend, and 50 million women watched Super Bowl XXXI (which was a million more women than watched the Oscars).

"The NFL says it beats out major league baseball (No. 2), the NBA (No. 3), figure skating (No. 4) and the NHL (No. 5) as the favorite spectator sport of U.S. women aged 12 and older.

"And you thought the NFL stood for No Female League. Nope."

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The angry man: From syndicated columnist Norman Chad: "You know, if [Chicago Bear] linebacker Bryan Cox were a tree, each autumn he'd yell at the leaves for falling."

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Looking back: On this day in 1946, Joe Louis knocked out Tami Mauriello in the first round at Yankee Stadium in New York to retain the world heavyweight title.

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Looking back again: On this day in 1965, UCLA lost to Michigan State, 13-3, in a season-opening game at East Lansing. However, the Bruins avenged the loss by beating the No. 1-ranked Spartans, 14-12, in the Rose Bowl game.

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Trivia answer: He is the only man to beat Dan Gable in wrestling. Gable had a 182-1 record in high school and college. Owings defeated Gable, 13-11, in the 142-pound class of the 1970 NCAA finals.

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And finally: The SportsLetter of the Amateur Athletic Foundation of Los Angeles reports some universities make no gender distinction when naming sports teams. Others do, of course.

"Our favorite is the University of Puerto Rico at Mayaquez, a provisional NCAA school, where the men's teams are the Tarzans and the women's teams are the Janes."

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